Photo Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
Goose Gossage is old and has bad opinions. Not to excuse it, but that just seems to be a thing that happens to a lot of old guys as the world evolves and changes around them and they… y’know… don’t.
I probably wouldn’t feel the need to go around calling him “trash,” though, if he didn’t also think that his bad opinions are not only not bad, but correct and The Right Way To Think About Things, or that he’s somehow a respect-worthy gatekeeper (dude, your name is Goose!) when it comes to the question of how the game should be played and how one should conduct oneself on the field.
Or if it wasn’t kinda funny to take feast on this delicious and low-hanging fruit.
Honestly, I also wouldn’t feel that quite so much if he hadn’t just trashed Jose Bautista and the Blue Jays either… hey, but he totally did!
Here’s the beginning of Andrew Marchand’s latest from ESPN.com:
Hall of Fame reliever Goose Gossage called Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista a “disgrace to the game” and blasted “nerds” for turning baseball into a “joke” during a 10-minute interview Thursday.
Oh and the shouldn’t-be-a-Hall-of-Famer’s full quote is even better. That is, if you’re into bitter old men yelling at clouds and having the temerity to speak for groups he has nothing to do with!
“Bautista is a fucking disgrace to the game,” Gossage told ESPN. “He’s embarrassing to all the Latin players, whoever played before him. Throwing his bat and acting like a fool, like all those guys in Toronto.”
Yes, Goose, I bet all the Latin players that played before the current generation will really be keen on the self-appointed spokesperson for what they believe in being Rich goddamn “Goose” goddamn Gossage.
I’m also sure that back in your day you really did have different views on how to respect other people, cultures, and the game. I’m just not so sure those hold up real well, buddy! (Then again, according to Andy Martino’s latest for New York’s Daily News, sadly, inside clubhouses maybe things haven’t even changed so much at all.)
It’s sad more than anything, really. A cry for attention. And Jose basically treated it as such in his response, telling Marchand that he’s “disappointed” to hear the comments, but adding simply that his focus is on “getting ready for a new season; hopefully, we will whoop some more ass.”
Also the best, though, is Bryce Harper. The young Nationals star pointedly addressed exactly this kind of fusty nonsense in another piece today at ESPN.com.
“Baseball’s tired,” he says. “It’s a tired sport, because you can’t express yourself. You can’t do what people in other sports do. I’m not saying baseball is, you know, boring or anything like that, but it’s the excitement of the young guys who are coming into the game now who have flair. If that’s Matt Harvey or Jacob deGrom or Manny Machado or Joc Pederson or Andrew McCutchen or Yasiel Puig — there’s so many guys in the game now who are so much fun.
“Jose Fernandez is a great example. Jose Fernandez will strike you out and stare you down into the dugout and pump his fist. And if you hit a homer and pimp it? He doesn’t care. Because you got him. That’s part of the game. It’s not the old feeling — hoorah … if you pimp a homer, I’m going to hit you right in the teeth. No. If a guy pimps a homer for a game-winning shot … I mean — sorry.”
He stops, looks around. The hell with it, he’s all in.
“If a guy pumps his fist at me on the mound, I’m going to go, ‘Yeah, you got me. Good for you. Hopefully I get you next time.’ That’s what makes the game fun. You want kids to play the game, right? What are kids playing these days? Football, basketball. Look at those players — Steph Curry, LeBron James. It’s exciting to see those players in those sports. Cam Newton — I love the way Cam goes about it. He smiles, he laughs. It’s that flair. The dramatic.”
Yep. 100% this forever. (Though let’s maybe add Bautista, Donaldson, and Stroman next time, eh?)
Go away, Goose. Go away, old man.