Over at Waiting for Next Year, Scott Sargent keenly points out that following the Tribe’s dramatic come-from-behind win against Seattle on Monday, closer Chris Perez deleted his Twitter account; in large part, of course, to the barrage of filth flying towards the way of the two-time All-Star.
Snippets of tweets at Perez, as Sargent points out, include:
@ChrisPerez54 Worthless piece of (expletive)
– Michael Barone (@MedinaHockey96)
@ChrisPerez54 you dumb fat (expletive), we should trade
your nasty (expletive) beard (expletive) (expletive) (expletive)
to the (expletive) cubs or pirates. We DONT need you #(expletive)
– Nate Testa (@TheRealGord)
Now to be entirely fair, I’m not a tremendous fan of Perez. Prior to the season the IPL staff was asked to make several predictions, one of which being whether Perez would last the year in Cleveland. My response: “I hope not. Look, Chris Perez is a fine pitcher but he’s overrated. Plus, he’s getting expensive. My only fear is that the team really punted on getting maximum return for him this past offseason.”
The root of my concern is quite simple, really: in a bullpen of eight, Chris Perez ranks no better than second (behind Pestano) and maybe as far down as fifth (behind Joe Smith, Cody Allen and Bryan Shaw).
And as anyone that’s followed my writings before coming to IPL knows, I tend to rant about the now-polarizing closer. But it’s always analytically driven, clean, and I never take any personal shots. And, to me, that’s OK. I refuse to cross a line that apparently many Twitter users fail to recognize. And there’s a problem with that.
In a society that’s more become more reclusive and yet incredibly accessible, it’s fair to assume that not only does a professional athlete and celebrity open themselves up to such idiocy, but bravado becomes stronger when hidden behind the walls of technology.
It just doesn’t mean it is OK, though.
In fact, it’s wrong; it cheapens the player-fan interaction and more likely than not it causes a player to sour on the entire environment. Granted, Perez has a tendency to, shall we say, stir up the proverbially hornets’ nest. But these types of indiscretions by the fans put a stain on an incredible win.