Boy, I am in one hell of a moral quagmire.
My dear, darling, beloved, pin-striped Yankees have just added the best reliever in baseball to their bullpen. The Yanks now boast the only three relievers in baseball who had 100+ strikeouts in 2015 and all of them throw over 100 mph. The dominate three are Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller, and a guy who just happens to be under investigation for some horrific domestic violence charges.
The Yanks’ latest addition, Aroldis Chapman, has been accused of domestic violence charges that includes (but is not limited to) choking his girlfriend, pushing her against a wall and firing a gun eight times in his garage. Basically, he is accused of the stuff human garbage piles are made of. It seems as though, with this trade, the Yankees have undone all of the good work Joe Torre has done in bringing domestic violence issues to light (check out his DV outreach foundation, Safe At Home, at joetorre.org).
All of their good karma seems to have been burned up.
The price for Chapman was too good to pass up. The Yankees sent four minor prospects, only one of whom is close to major-league ready, for a man who is arguably the best reliever in baseball. When two teams backed out of trades when these allegations surfaced, Chapman’s price was driven way down. The Cincinnati Reds were desperate to get rid of him and I don’t blame them. The deal for Chapman is risky because we are not sure how many games he will miss due to suspension and he is in the last year of his contract.
As a baseball move, it was a brilliant no-brainer. As a moral move, it makes you wanna barf.
So how am I, as a woman and a huge Yankees fan, supposed to react to this signing?
In my other blog earlier this year, I wrote a scathing critique of the Dallas Cowboys and Greg Hardy. The big difference is that I have no attachment to the Cowboys. I hate them, in fact, so it was easy to skewer them. Now, I am forced to ponder how to root for my team while still being disgusted with Chapman. I am SO EXCITED for the Betances-Miller-Chapman three-headed monster that will be the bullpen, but I’m sick about what Chapman has allegedly done. I don’t want him playing for my team, but I really want him playing for my team.
Cheering for the Yankees does not mean I cheer for domestic violence. Cheering for the Yankees also does not mean I am ignoring the awful things Chapman has allegedly done. Perhaps I am simply rooting for the laundry, as Seinfeld coined so appropriately. I root for the Yankees, but I won’t root for Chapman. He will get support through osmosis until he can prove to me that he is changed. If he takes the Ray Rice route and owns up to what he has done and takes steps to better himself, perhaps I will cheer for him genuinely.
Until then, I am going to die of happiness because of the amazing bullpen the Yanks boast, but I am also going to hate myself a little.
Oh, and by the way, don’t think that PED use and domestic violence are the same thing and warrant a similar suspension. Nope. Nope nope nope. If you think that, you’re wrong. I’d rather see DV offenders suspended for 80 games and PED users suspended for far less. I’d rather have someone cheat than have them put their hands on a woman. When I have kids, I’d rather them look up to someone like A-Rod or Ryan Braun instead of Greg Hardy or Aroldis Chapman. But whatever.
http://www.pinstripealley.com/yankees-editorials-opinions-analysis/2015/12/30/10687970/mlb-aroldis-chapman-yankees-brian-cashman-trade-domestic-violence ………This article by Pinstripe Alley was wonderful and perfectly describes how I feel about the trade.