(Photo: Associated Press)
For the last several years, JSOnline’s chats with Brewers beat writers have been a terrific source of amusement. There’s nothing particularly groundbreaking about them, but it’s usually fun to see how professional sportswriters react to the (shall we say) occasionally impetuous sentiments expressed by fans.
In this week’s installment, Tom Haudricourt had to respond to the following question by an incorrigible fan calling him/herself “Appleton Fox.”
Do you think Mark Antanassio is wearing blinders in thinking Doug Melvin and Ron Roenicke actually know what they are doing? Melvin had made so many costly personnel blunders it borders on being criminal. Roenicke is completely lost when it comes to making rational managerial moves. Are the Brewers stuck with these 2 losers because Antanassio can't see their incompetence?
Haudricourt answered with typical class, reminding us that the Melvin/Roenicke-era Brewers won a division championship and made a late run at the playoffs last year – not exactly evidence of criminal incompetence.
Appleton Fox exemplifies one of the more tedious types of sports enthusiast – the Fire Someone fan. Similar to his cousins, Trade Someone and Demote Someone, Mr. Fire Someone thinks that a winning streak is right around the corner…just as soon as you give the manager or GM his walking papers. That’ll shake the team up! The reason the players have underperformed is the coaches and front office staff aren’t in fear of their jobs nearly enough!
You can’t listen to sports talk radio without Mr. Fire Someone calling in and explaining his nifty motivational technique. Why haven’t more teams realized by now they can pink slip themselves to a World Series championship? Surely, if only there was more turnover in the Detroit Tigers organization, they wouldn’t have been swept by the Giant last year. Mr. Fire Someone probably still uses the phrase “tough love” without irony, and thinks American decline began when parents stopped spanking their children.
Over the course of Melvin’s tenure, the Brewers have gone from a 100-loss team to a .500 team, to a winning team, to a wild card winning team, to a division winning team. Sure, the Suppan and Hall contracts were bummers, but no one’s perfect. Based on the totality of Melvin’s track record, Mr. Fire Someone ought to get down on his knees and shine Melvin’s shoes.
There’s an infamous retort stand-up comics use to shoot down hecklers, something along the lines of, “I don’t come down to the corner where you work and tell you how to [perform casual sex act].” Mr. Fire Someone would do well to heed that sentiment.