Friday, June 5, 2009

Kerrzy's Notebook: Don't Apologize Alex!

On Friday, Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Alex Rios issued an apology to his fans, his team and his teammates for something he says he "should never have done."

Don't worry Toronto fans - though it sounds like the type of apology baseball fans have become accustomed to, it has nothing to do with steroids!

So what's all the fuss about?

Well, a video surfaced on YouTube showing a tuxedo-clad Rios getting harassed by a grown man while trying to leave a gala put on by the Jays Care Foundation. Rios issued that apology because he responded like a lot of us would.

According to reports, the whole thing started when Rios "brushed off" a kid who wanted an autograph. As he walked to his car, this old man yelled out to him "The way you played today Alex, you should be lucky someone wants your autograph!"

"The way you played today" refers to Rios setting a Blue Jays record with a seventh consecutive strikeout in a heartbreaking 6-5 loss to the LA Angels, part of an 0-for-10 slump at the plate. Needless to say, it had been a frustrating day.

Rios responded with a couple of swear-words, or one swear word a couple of times, and then this idiot went on to call him a "bum" and yelled "remember where you came from!"

Okay, first of all: It's a school night. What is a kid doing wandering around Toronto late on a Thursday night? Was that his dad in the video? If so, I'm not surprised Rios snubbed his autograph request. The apple doesn't fall far from the three, if you know what I'm saying.

Secondly, I can't STAND people that harass celebrities or athletes and then play the victim when the person they're bothering snaps (I'm looking at you TMZ). I can't stand it. Who's the bum? The guy getting paid millions of dollars to play baseball, or the chump on the street talkin' smack?

Third of all - what does the guy mean when he says "remember where you came from?" What does being born in Coffee, Alabama, have to do with striking out five times in one game?

Maybe I'm going against the grain here, but I honestly don't think Alex Rios should have apologized.

What he said to the guy wasn't even that bad. He didn't say anything you haven't heard before, I guarantee you that. In fact, I can definitely think of some far worse things he could have said!

Here's how I see it: If you're just minding your own business and wind up on the end of some unprovoked verbal abuse, there's nothing wrong with telling that person where to go.

Pro athlete or not, Alex Rios shouldn't have to put up with that any more than you or I should.

And if any kids happened to see the video, which has since been yanked from YouTube, there's even a great lesson to be learned:

If some chump tries to bully you, stand up for yourself!

Let Kerrzy read it to you here:

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