Baseball is a remarkably unfair game, exacerbated by the fact that it’s run by a bunch of Al Pacino’s spawn from The Devil’s Advocate. Here’s the first of a semi-regular series this season on baseball’s most heartless organizations. Batter up, O’s.
Written by Kyle Magin
Baseball players are human beings. It’s true! They drink, chew, weep, suffer from broken hearts and mature at different paces. You can forget that when looking at guys, constantly, like they’re a superhero body filled with OPSes and ERAs and HRs and WHIPs.
The Baltimore Orioles have forgotten about the humanity of outfielder Hyun-Soo Kim, who’s newly imported from the Korean Baseball Organization. Kim logged 45 at-bats in spring training, hitting .178 and generally underwhelming at the plate if you assessed him only on paper. Apparently paper was Baltimore’s only consideration when they asked him to go down to the minors, a request Kim denied because he negotiated his two-year, $7 million contract well.
The Baltimore brain trust got what it had coming when Kim told them to sit and spin. You don’t bring a non-English speaking foreigner to America, give him two-and-a-half-weeks worth of at-bats, give up and send him to Norfolk. There obviously was a miscommunication between the front office who signed Kim and Manager Buck Showalter, who apparently wants nothing to do with playing him. Put yourself, honestly, in his shoes and try not to feel at least pissed, if not also hurt, scared and confused.
O’s, you signed Kim because you liked what he did over in Korea (28 homeruns last year!) and you should never sign any baseball player you’re not willing to ride out a slump with.
You should give a 28-year old who is learning a new language, in a new league, against new pitchers, more than four fucking weeks to figure it out, especially when you negotiated the bit of the contract that lets him stay in the bigs.
If you’re not willing to do that, then you’re the most heartless organization in baseball, and the dumbest!