Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Worshipping at the Altar of the Scrappy White Guy

So the narrative goes like this:

Star player doesn't give 100% on a particular play.
Local sports talk radio calls him out for not hustling.
Idiot calls in, carefully identifies himself as Not A Racist, and then demands to know why Star player, who is often African-American, can't hustle like Scrappy Infielder Guy, who is always white.
Someone says "Hey, dude, that's kinda racist."
Chest-thumping about how not racist saying the white dude tries harder than the black dude is invariably ensues.

Seriously. I have never heard anyone say "Why can't Jim Thome hustle like Joe Thurston?" Because, for all that I adore the awesomeness that is Thome, the guy's built like Bluto and for the sake of his hammys, doesn't always bust those tiny little gams of his up the line on routine grounders. Joe Thurston, on the other hand, never seemed to be going less that nine million miles an hour, even on a swinging bunt that would do everything but crawl into the pitcher's glove and beg to be petted. Or how about Jose Oquendo? Or Hector Luna? Or Michael Martinez? Or Jose Altuve, or Josh Harrison, or....well, there's a whole lot of scrappy out there that's not named David Eckstein. Honest. Watch a few games. You'll see.
So, first time caller, long time listener, do me a favor. Next time you call in to bitch about a guy not hustling, see if you can find an example of scrappiness to compare him to who isn't at least six shades paler than he is. If you can't, then hold off on the "I IS TOTALLY NOT RACIST BUT THE BLACK /HISPANIC GUY DOESN'T HUSTLE AND THE WHITE GUY TOTALLY DOES" bullcrap until you can, and then think about what you're saying.
Okay?
Thanks.
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