The ban hammer was dropped on both the Blue Jays and the Rangers this past Tuesday. As expected, Rougned Odor received an 8-game ban for slugging outfielder Jose Bautista during last Sunday’s game. Whether you agree or disagree with the suspensions is moot. Whether you think it was a cowardly move to hit Bautista with a pitch or not is also moot.
The real point here is that all of this happened because a player celebrated one of the greatest moments of his baseball career, seven months ago! How childish and embarrassing does that sound? The whole point of sport is for one team to celebrate at the end. The unwritten baseball code strikes again. Stars aren’t allowed in the game and bat-flipping is a no-no. The Texas Rangers want to take fun out of the game and according to some older ex-players this is the way it should be. Today’s game is just different.
Rising stars such as Bryce Harper and Marcus Stroman are an example of this.
Harper, undoubtedly baseball’s biggest star is part of this new generation that embraces the showing of emotion and having a little more fun out there. Marcus Stroman, rising star pitcher of the Blue Jays recently made a few hitters angry when talking a little too loudly to himself while pitching. But, I do believe things will slowly change with the new generation of baseball players coming through the game.
Even Major League Baseball is turning a corner. The aren’t stupid and know they need stars in their game. Stars like Bryce Harper, Marcus Stroman, and Jose Bautista. After the bat flip happened, they were happy to celebrate the moment on their website and social media accounts. It is a sign of a change happening in baseball. A change that cannot happen soon enough. Moments like those are what make the game more exciting for fans. Basketball encourages the building of stars. Whether it’s Steph Curry celebrating shots before they even go in or the marketing of James Harden’s beard. These stars make the game more interesting. How many stars are their in baseball? How many people can name a current baseball star. They are few and far between and that is just no fun. Ratings are up for baseball. My nephews local baseball league almost tripled participants from the previous year. All because of moments like Jose Bautista’s bat flip.
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