A big star leaves town and his former hometown fans feel betrayed. They hate him and call him greedy. They boo him when he returns and hold a grudge until the end of their days — or until the guy comes back on a final one-year deal at the end of his career, after which all is forgiven.
It’s a tale as old as time. Or, well, as old as free agency.
A lot of the time the booing and the hatred seems unfair to me. Sometimes guys who are simply traded away are booed, which is odd given that they didn’t have a choice. Often, when a guy leaves via free agency, the team made no real effort to keep the player, again, giving him no choice but to leave. Doesn’t matter, though. There is always going to be a certain segment of fans who root for laundry, who hate players who don’t wear the preferred laundry and who especially hate the players who once wore the preferred laundry and don’t anymore.
Which makes me wonder: if they love the laundry so much, why do they destroy it like these Nats fans did to their very expensive Bryce Harper jerseys, as seen at yesterday’s Mets-Nats game:
No word on whether they hold a similar grudge against the billionaire owners of the team who lowballed Harper in contract negotiations. Maybe they defaced their Armani suits to protest that and we just haven’t seen ’em yet.