Ryan Franklin Is A Crybaby
Ryan Franklin sure does know how to make friends and influence people, doesn’t he?
In what is probably the worst Cardinals public relations maneuver since Garry Templeton flipped off fans in 1981, Franklin blasted the fans who booed him after another unimpressive performance in Wednesday’s doubleheader. He said:
“You don’t boo your own team. I don’t care who you are or what you say or just because you spent your money to come here to watch us play that somebody happens to make one bad pitch and give up a homer and you are going to start booing?
“They are supposed to be the best fans in baseball. Yeah, right.”
News flash for Franklin: Yeah, paying $50 for a ticket and $9 for a beer and $45 for a ballcap and $7 for cold nachos and $30 for parking DOES give fans the right to boo when they come to the stadium and see poor baseball. Especially on cold afternoons. And even more so when they have a guy tossing batting practice who is making $3.5 million and maintains a goofy goat beard on his chin.
Baseball players, like most celebrities and other wealthy people, live in an insulated bubble of constant admiration, tremendous prosperity, and positive reinforcement. Like a spoiled brat, they expect to be treated with kid gloves, or thanked whenever they fail at their job. And let’s not forget – their “job” is to play a child’s sport for six months a year.
But the people who come to the stadium to pay those exorbitant prices for tickets, parking, and refreshments (and who, in turn, pay those crazy salaries) do not have lives as blessed as Franklin’s cushy situation. They work shitty jobs they hate. Their boss is often rude and unappreciative. They make peanut shells for wages. They have to struggle to get things done at the home – laundry, repairs, kid stuff, etc. – when they aren’t busting their ass to scrape together a living. Yet St. Louis fans still come to that brand new stadium and pony up everything they have so that they can see their beloved team play a baseball game.
But that love and devotion comes at a price: fans expect good baseball for their hard earned money and their precious time. Cardinals fans are knowledgeable, mostly polite, but ultimately fair. Ask any scrappy-but-marginally-talented player who has basked in the love of Cardinal fans, and they’ll tell you that there isn’t a better audience in the game. Rex Hudler was a STAR in St. Louis, and I guarantee that he appreciates that every day of his life.
Yes, fans booed and heckled Franklin Wednesday. And they should’ve booed him. The fans are tired of obvious mediocrity out of Franklin, sure, but they were also tired of the excuses coming out of everybody’s mouth – you cannot tell this fan base that you have good stuff when it’s clear to knowledgeable fans that you don’t. The fans also booed because they rightly disagreed with Tony LaRussa’s decision to leave Franklin out there for a second inning when it was such an obviously bad idea. These are not stupid fans, folks, and stuff like this doesn’t get a free pass just because it’s the Midwest or because these players are millionaires.
Franklin’s crybaby routine demonstrates how little he understands Cardinals fans, or how good he has it here. More importantly, Franklin has forgotten how good he has it in general. He’s a rich man who has six months off every year and works four hour days when he’s “on the clock.” He’s famous, has excellent medical care, and has opportunities 99% of the population will never have in a thousand lifetimes.
In other words, Ryan … change your tampon, pop some Midol, and get over yourself. You want to be treated better? Then shut up and pitch.