There has been universal brouhaha in New England about David Ortiz's extended essay defending himself. Ortiz has been enormously popular, even worshiped during his tenure with the Red Sox, but apparently that is not enough. He seems to find it intolerable that absolutely everyone, even here, does not love him. This oversensitivity and self-centeredness is pretty much why there are a few holdouts.
I don't think there's anyone in New England who hates the guy, but some of us are merely pleased that he hits a baseball well and does it for us, and otherwise find his act a bit tiresome. He can be a jerk.
I don't have any problem rooting for jerks on my sports teams. Some of my all-time favorites are Jim Rice, Danny Ainge, and Randy Moss. I am betting that a week's vacation spent in close quarters with any of my favorite teams might put me off rooting for them forever.
Ortiz also referenced PED's, and how people still doubt him and think his abilities are/were enhanced. That would be cheating, and though more and more people give that a pass, I don't. The lines can be fuzzy - some sports and some eras seem to have so many offenders that one is tempted to condemn only the worst, shrugging at the guys who were driving 70 in a 65 zone. Yet I do pretty quickly hit a point that I turn on a guy for cheating. I wasn't paying attention at the time to the open secret that Manny Ramirez was a user, and feel I was robbed of a Red Sox WS win when I learned. People who used and stopped I can accept, though a bit grudgingly.
Criminality is another whole realm, I just turn off and stop rooting. Guys who seem to be making an effort or turning things around can win me back. But I tend to be pretty suspicious of life-changes.
The curious piece about Ortiz's rant was not his assertion that being more suspicious of him because he is Dominican is racist. It was the automatic acceptance of this as true that floored me. Oh, well I agree with that! I don't know what else you'd call it. Of course it's racist.
How so? I am suspicious of every track and field record, especially for women, coming out of East Germany from 1960-90. I'm a little suspicious of every T&F record, period. I am more suspicious of college athletes who are in the big, hypercompetitive conferences. I am suspicious of athletes coming from most Caribbean countries, white or black, Spanish, French, Dutch or English-speaking because PED's are legal in so many of them and they have had so many athletes test positive. Ditto Bulgarian weightlifters. I suspect power-hitters more than singles-hitters, linemen more than quarterbacks, and guys who hung out with Lance Armstrong more than golfers.