Booing At A Homerun Derby?

DC Sports Nexus ---- Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Home Run Derby Drama
If you watched the Homerun Derby last night you were treated to a great performance from the likes of Trumbo, Batista, and the champion Prince Fielder.  There were some monster shots and plenty of fountain balls all night long.  However, the "signature" moment of the night was, with out a doubt, the booing and mock cheers of the KC fans as Robinson Cano swung his way to 0 homeruns.

For those who may not know the whole story, the KC faithful were upset at Cano, the AL team captain, for not choosing Billy Butler of the Kansas City Royals to participate in the derby.  Therefore they booed the whole time he hit, and cheered every time he made an out.

There have been a ton of comments supporting and vilifying the KC fan base.  So I figured I'd throw my two cents in.  Full disclaimer, as an long term fan of the Orioles, I have no love for the Yankees...

I didn't have a huge problem with what the KC fans did.  I did think it got a little excessive as it continued through the whole at bat, but it didn't bother me that much.  When you put on a Yankee uniform, you know you are invoking the hatred of the rest of the league.  Combine that with the fact that you left the hometown slugger out of the derby, and you have set yourself up for disaster.

From where I stand, there was a VERY easy solution to this problem.  The announcers made a huge deal about the late ball game Cano played in and how he didn't arrive in KC until 5 AM.  Why not graciously bow out and let Butler take your spot.  Easy fix! 

Obviously, Cano was feeling some exhaustion tonight that prevented him from hitting a single homerun and that move would have instantly turned him from hated to beloved in KC. 

Now I get that Cano was the former champion of the derby.  I also get that he is probably a competitive guy.  However, he has to realize that All Star Weekend, and particularly the derby, is all about the fans.  The year particularly the Kansas City fans.  Butler should have been in the derby.

In many ways I have the same problem with Matt Kemp.  If you are hurt and can't play with your team or in the All Star game, you shouldn't be hitting in the derby.  I'm not just saying this because of his comments and "snub" of Harper.

Why not bow out of the derby and give your spot to someone who has a better chance to put on a good show for the fans.  Instantly he would have been seen as the "good guy" as suppose to having people questioning his involvement.

A very simple idea that I saw floating around twitter last night was to require 1 member from the host city to take part in the derby.  Good thinking, get on that MLB.  Then we can avoid this mess next year.

So was Kansas City's booing of Cano mean?  Sure it was.  Guess what though, they haven't been to the playoffs since 1985, the year they won the World Series.  Fans of KC haven't had much to look forward to in the last couple of decades, and all they wanted to do was see THEIR guy in the Home Run Derby tonight that took place in THEIR city.

Who can really fault them for that?

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