Why Its Okay to Boo Milton Bradley But You Were Kind of a Dick for Booing Jacque Jones
So everyone is making a big deal out of Cubs fans booing Milton Bradley in the first 6 weeks of the season. Some are looking to blame blogs, and some just think the booing is inappropriate. Either way the question of whether Cubs fans are too quick to boo has arisen again.
Booing is not necessarily a bad thing, however. Everyone’s gut reaction to it is that its insensitive and/or just plain rude. The argument that always appeals to me is when someone says, “How would you like it if you were doing shitty at your job and 10s of 1000s of people gathered around your little cubicle and booed you?” The problem with that is, at least at my job, I’m not being paid $30 million dollars to be accountable to the entire City.
Booing can be a reflection of an intelligent fan base. Cubs fans get so much shit for being “too loyal” to the team, even when the team trots out miserable squads year after year. Well just because we love baseball and are willing to watch a 65 win team all summer doesn’t mean we are idiots. If someone deserves to be booed, then Cubs fans will boo them.
Which brings me back to Milton Bradley. He knows what he signed up for. He signed a gigantic multi-year deal and with those kinds of things come expectations. As he even put it himself after last night’s home run:
”I didn’t come here to suck. I know I’ve sucked so far, but give me some love, you know what I’m saying? I am a Cub.”
I mean we love you as a Cub, but you’re going to need to start hitting and earn that contract.
So why was it not okay to boo Jacque Jones and okay to boo Milton? Expectations. Jacque Jones signed a 3-year $16 million dollar deal. He had been the kind of guy that hit about .285 with 20 home runs a year before he signed that contract. Not to say that isn’t a huge contract, but when he struggled in April by hitting around .230 Cubs fans mercilessly booed him. It was 1 month and he wasn’t supposed to be an all-star. Bradley’s contract is twice that and he has been even worse, hitting well below .200.
I guess my point is it’s ok to boo Bradley, but booing Jones wasn’t cool. Unless I’m completely wrong and Cubs fans are just racist.