The Tigers are still right in the thick of things, having entered Thursday afternoon’s game against the Twins just one game out of the second Wild Card slot in the American League. The club, however, lost 5-1, continuing a stretch of mediocrity dating back to early August. The club hasn’t won more than two games in a row since the end of August.
Including today’s loss, the Tigers are 17-19 since August 7. Tigers fans, understandably, are a bit frustrated. But fans tend to take out their frustrations by booing or heckling players, or harassing them on social media. As Catherine Slonskis of SB Nation’s Bless You Boys reports, veteran first baseman Miguel Cabrera is trying to protect the club’s newer and younger players from the negativity.
I’ve been here a lot of years. I’ve been through it. To me, it doesn’t matter what people say. But we got a lot of new guys here (and we tell them) ‘Don’t worry about that stuff.’ They think about it and read stuff. But we need to stay positive and go out there and play.
Cabrera added, “We’re human.”
Per Slonskis, Cabrera also considers a player’s phone — on which he can access social media and thus the negative sentiment from the fan base — a “dangerous” device. Tigers players tend to avoid going onto social media prior to games, according to Slonskis.
While fans have a right to express their frustrations, Cabrera also has a right to push back against it. And he’s right that players are human. It’s a perspective that some segment of every team’s fan base lacks, particularly towards the end of a season and in the playoffs. Tigers fans are watching a 78-68 team that could find itself in the postseason. Fans of many other teams would love to trade places, I assure you.