CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

<< Previous Article
Premium Article Contractual Matters: D... (09/06)
<< Previous Column
Prospectus Perspective... (09/03)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Prospectus Perspective... (09/08)
Next Article >>
Premium Article On the Beat: The Long ... (09/06)

September 6, 2010

Prospectus Perspective

The La Russa-Rasmus Feud

by Steven Goldman

the archives are now free.

All Baseball Prospectus Premium and Fantasy articles more than a year old are now free as a thank you to the entire Internet for making our work possible.

Not a subscriber? Get exclusive content like this delivered hot to your inbox every weekday. Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get instant access to the best baseball content on the web.

Subscribe for $4.95 per month
Recurring subscription - cancel anytime.


a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Purchase a $39.95 gift subscription
a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

On Sunday, the long-rumored antipathy between Tony La Russa and his young center fielder, Colby Rasmus, broke out into the open, when it was revealed that the player had asked to be traded by the Cardinals in late July. Though Rasmus denied the story, La Russa confirmed it. Subsequently, Albert Pujols landed on the kid with both feet:

If you don’t want to be part of this great organization, man, this is one of the special organizations that you want to play for. And if you don’t want to be a part of this, then you know what? You need to figure out a place to go and play.

Thanks for the TLC there Albert. Given recent public appearances, Pujols can’t be counted on to know what’s in his best interest or that of the Cardinals organization, and he’s off base here. Rasmus might “figure out a place to go and play,” and perhaps he would be happier and more productive. The consequence for Pujols—and this may well come to pass regardless of what happens to Rasmus—would be that he and Matt Holliday age into irrelevance together, surrounded by I’m-just-happy-to-be-here guys like Skip Schumaker and Brendan Ryan. This might make for a sunnier, more harmonious clubhouse, but it would likely preclude further championship rings. There should be no rush to judgment on the part of La Russa, Pujols, or general manager John Mozeliak, lest they prove the old adage “A fool and his impact-level center fielder are soon parted.”

The fool here may well be La Russa. I don’t know Colby Rasmus, and it is entirely possible that being around him is far less entertaining than watching him play. This would not be at all surprising: it is a lucky few of us who have never had to deal with that one crazy coworker who makes coming to what would otherwise be a pleasant workplace a nightmare. I once shared a cubicle wall with a guy who would shout things like, “MIDGETS! MIDGETS! MIDGETS! MIDGETS LANDING ON MY TOES!” as I was trying to edit columns of tiny numbers—there were days when the only thing keeping that guy alive was the absence of a blunt object heavier than a pad of post-it notes. Perhaps Rasmus shouts out things like that during Pujols’ at-bats. Maybe he doesn’t shower after games. Maybe he showers during games while wearing La Russa’s underwear. We won’t know until such time as the Cardinals start talking or La Russa writes his autobiography and settles a few scores. I submit that unless Rasmus is doing something immoral or illegal, whether he comports himself with appropriate clubhouse dignity (whatever that is), or if La Russa likes him or not is irrelevant to what should be the manager’s main concern: how Rasmus can help the Cardinals win games now and in the future.

“Future” is the key word in the foregoing, because the Cardinals have plummeted out of the National League Central race. Fortunately, Rasmus, who turned 24 in August, has plenty of future left. The average major-league center fielder is hitting .260/.326/.403; Rasmus is hitting .264/.349/.495. Despite being inconsistent—he piled most of his hitting into April and June—and leg problems that caused him to miss chunks of July and August, he has made important progress this year, holding his own against same-side pitchers after hitting only .160/.219/.255 against them his rookie year. Rasmus is going to be a key part of the Cardinals’ future or, if traded, a key part of some other organization. Either way, he’s going places. The question is if the Cardinals want to ride him or watch him go. This is the kind of decision that can hold a franchise down for years.

It is possible that La Russa is suffering from hardening of the managerial arteries. La Russa will turn 66 in October. Historically, many older managers have lost patience with the care and feeding of the young around retirement age. Skippers like Casey Stengel and Sparky Anderson, who thought of themselves as teachers up through the midpoint of their careers, didn’t want much to do with rookies as they headed into the homestretch. Joe Torre’s maladroit handling of the 25-year-old Matt Kemp may be symptomatic of the manager’s age. Torre is 70 now, but even as a youthful 64-year-old he preferred a 36-year-old Bernie Williams in center field over any more youthful, limber replacement the Yankees might have proposed.

That said, there is no safe generalization to be made about aging managers. Connie Mack built his great 1929-1931 A’s team in his late 60s. In his last years, Tommy Lasorda brought along a plethora of youngsters, including Mike Piazza. Bobby Cox will go out this year at 69 with Jason Heyward, 20, as a final monument—and Cox might have used Heyward last year if he had been allowed. Cox probably hasn’t thought of it in such morbid terms, but there is a chance that Heyward’s baseball career will be longer than the remainder of Cox’s life. It would certainly have outlasted any reasonable extension that Cox could have taken had he not wanted to step down.

Some managers, wanting to go out on a high note, might have pressed the Braves to keep the kid on the farm for another year and sign a 33-year-old veteran to hold his place. Cox did not, and though we can’t say if it’s because he was simply so enthused with the kid’s potential that he knew he would be better than, say, another go-‘round with Garret Anderson or if he was thinking of Heyward’s place in the circle-of-franchise-life that we’re discussing here, the effect is the same: Cox positioned the team to move on without him. The irony is that he has benefited from the decision even as he heads for the door.

As with Heyward and Cox, Rasmus’s career will far outlast La Russa’s, but the manager doesn’t seem to be thinking on that level, failing to communicate to Rasmus the reasons for frequent non-injury benchings. Traditionally, a manager does not owe it to his charges to iterate the reasoning behind his every move, but there are times, and this is clearly one of them, where it is more expedient to do so than not. Here, perhaps, is where we run into the problem of graybeard managers: the indignity of a senior citizen and two-time World Series winning manager having to hold himself accountable to a twentysomething ballplayer with less than a thousand career at-bats. If La Russa was thinking of the team’s future, he might be more willing to speak slowly, use small words, or whatever it takes to make Rasmus, to paraphrase Sessue Hayakawa, happy in his work.

In his anti-Rasmus rant, Pujols said “To play in this organization, just behind the Yankees in World Series (victories), to play in the postseason almost every year—it’s pretty special.” Pujols had to say “almost every year” because this October he’s going to be home re-felting his pool table instead of playing in the National League Division Series. The break might seem a fluke to him now, but the Cardinals have made it into October just once in four years since winning the World Series in 2006, and it’s not the first time the Cards have gone soft; even this great organization has had its fallow periods, be it the later Whitey Herzog and Joe Torre years or the long run of mediocre teams that lay between the pennants of 1967 and 1968 and Herzog’s championship of 1982. As Stengel once observed, it is far easier to tear a club down than to build it up. The Cardinals can get a fast start towards the former by pushing Rasmus out the door just because he doesn’t like his manager.

Steven Goldman is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Steven's other articles. You can contact Steven by clicking here

66 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

BP Comment Quick Links

Clonod

WORD.

Great column, Steven.

Sep 06, 2010 08:07 AM
rating: 1
 
Richie

I don't recall hearing Albert ever call out a teammate before. Nor sucking up to his manager, either.

LaRussa I'm willing to perceive as getting old and cranky. Albert's weighing in, that sounds off a loud alarm for me regarding Rasmus.

Sep 06, 2010 08:38 AM
rating: 1
 
Richard Bergstrom

Agreed. I'm on LaRussa and Albert's side on this. Colby's definitely talented, but he still has a chunk to learn and if he is so unhappy that he demands a trade at age 24 instead of asking for advice from veteran players, he'll be too egotistical to adjust his swing or ask for advice if he goes into a major slump.

Sep 06, 2010 20:24 PM
rating: -2
 
Matt Kory

Not that it really matters, but how do you know he didn't ask for advice from veteran players?

Sep 06, 2010 22:14 PM
rating: 2
 
Richard Bergstrom

Because if he had said he was upset with the Cardinals and had talked to the veteran players, I'm sure the last thing they would've told a 24 year old 2nd year player to do was to talk to the media about his problems.

Sep 06, 2010 23:01 PM
rating: -2
 
Matt

How does anybody know Rasmus talked to the media about this? The linked article says a "report surfaced". Rasmus himself seems to be avoiding commenting.

Sep 07, 2010 10:19 AM
rating: 2
 
Richard Bergstrom

Here is an article that describes his encounter with the media on September 4th. There appear to be discrepancies between what Rasmus, LaRussa and Mozeliak. But the transcript itself makes Rasmus sound he's either avoiding the topic of staying in St. Louis, or isn't sure what he wants when a simple "I love it here" would've worked better. He did say "I love it here" after the game, but not in the pregame conference.

"Rasmus offered a less-than-convincing endorsement of his situation during his first go-round with the media.

Asked if he likes it in St. Louis, Rasmus' answer was telling. "I'd rather not answer that if I don't have to," he said.

Asked, do you want to be here next year?

"I'm not going to say either way. I'm going to come in and play hard every day."

When it was pointed out that his answer will likely be interpreted as a "no, you don't want to be here," Rasmus said, "I didn't say that, though."

Asked, so are you saying you don't know?

"I'd like to be here but there's no telling. I'd rather say nothing so you won't write nothing, if you don't mind. But you do what you want."

Asked, does your wanting to be here depend on who is the manager?

"No."



http://www.sportingnews.com/mlb/feed/2010-09/struggling-cards/story/rasmus-isnt-thrilled-with-cardinals

Sep 07, 2010 11:12 AM
rating: 1
 
lefty50

This is Albert's team. He's a straighforward guy, but he doesn't shoot from the hip. No reason to defend Rasmus; he's a 24 year-old part-timer. And the inference to Pujols and LaRussa attending the Beck rally is way off bsse. There's no way this is a negative reflection on the Cardinals or Pujols. This will either put Rasmus in his place or they can trade him for a couple of good prospects.

Sep 06, 2010 09:14 AM
rating: -2
 
Ogremace

Dudes's started 212 of the past 296 games. Calling him a part-timer is stupid because it misses that 1) it's his second year, and 2) it fails to mention that minor injuries made a bit dent in that number.

And really what has he done? They don't like him but they seem to have little to say about his actual issues - maybe if they would tell us about these it would seem less like a bitch fight.

Sep 06, 2010 09:45 AM
rating: 9
 
jalee121

The only reason he's a "part timer" is because TLR loves himself small sample size in favor of better players.

Sep 06, 2010 09:54 AM
rating: 5
 
Richie
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

Hadn't even noticed the inference, but you're right. There in the third paragraph.

This is, needless to say, not a 'Tea Party'-friendly zone. BP's political preaching is irritating, but seldom strident. Just something to put up with, I've figured.

Sep 06, 2010 09:44 AM
rating: -6
 
SamVan

The reason that BP isn't a "Tea Party friednly zone" is because the writers and readers tend to be sane. The Tea Party is like the right wing equivelent of the Chicago Seven. If a ballplayer attended a rally with someone like Abbie Hoffman, I'd probably buy his jersy, but I'd also understand that he put his organization in a highly dubious position.

Sep 06, 2010 12:52 PM
rating: -2
 
Matt Kory

I'd hardly say calling Pujols' decision-making into question because he stood at the podium during one of the most divisive public rallies in recent memory "political preaching." I think you're looking too hard.

Sep 06, 2010 16:11 PM
rating: 2
 
morillos

I'm a huge, longtime Cards fan, and I'm with Goldman on this one. Losing Rasmus to personality issues would be a monumental blunder. And if that's your basis for trading him, other teams will know it and you'll get crap in return.

Sep 06, 2010 10:33 AM
rating: 8
 
Aaron/YYZ

Not mentioned, but it's not like TLR hasn't had issues with other star players over the years (e.g. Rolen).

Sep 06, 2010 11:07 AM
rating: 9
 
tkoegel

Can someone explain the reference to Pujols' other recent public pronouncements?

Sep 06, 2010 13:28 PM
rating: 0
 
bbqswinger

I'm assuming it's the appearance at the Glenn Beck rally but I'm not sure.

Sep 06, 2010 14:26 PM
rating: 0
 
Matt Kory

Pujols and LaRussa were both front and center at the most recent Glen Beck rally in DC.

Sep 06, 2010 14:46 PM
rating: 0
 
orlandoca7

If I'm not mistaken, LaRussa's club still has a hole at 3B, the same hole since he decided to teach Rolen a lesson. Maybe the hitting coach can play center next year.

Sep 06, 2010 13:48 PM
rating: 3
 
bbqswinger

I tend to agree with Richie regardign Albert weighing in being a 'loud alarm' but I also am still bitter about the Rolen/LaRussa thing and Rasmus was getting it done for most of the year.

This situation is sounding more like what Billy Beane said regarding clubhouses - (something like) when you're winning, clubhouse chemistry doesn't matter but when you're losing it's suddenly to blame.

And we were losing to the Pirates/Nats/Astros with Rasmus on the bench so I don't know where to take this.

Sep 06, 2010 14:30 PM
rating: 2
 
Richie

tkoegel, the reference is to the Glenn Beck rally. Goldman and many of the comment raters found it very, very offensive.

Sep 06, 2010 14:50 PM
rating: 0
 
lemppi
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

Sorry Goldman. Your liberal douchebaggery has no place in that article. Its fine to infer what you want about Albert attending a Beck rally in other forums such as your chats. (not that you'd have the guts to say it to his face) But the "Rasmus Situation" is a major part of the news of the day. If BPro is going to give Premium Subscribers information and opinion on the situation it can be done w/o political preaching no matter how short or from either side of the political spectrum.

I don't see the libs that write here deriding any loony left actions like burning down housing developments to stop urban sprawl or ruining medical experiments in a research lab because a fuzzy creature is being used....but, boy oh boy, if over 100,000 folks want to peacefully congregate to talk about religion and the direction of their country all the while having no arrests AND picking up after themselves, then that needs to be torn apart and mocked/ridiculed.

I'm sure the ranking system will be all over this to get it banished. Fine.

Sep 06, 2010 14:55 PM
rating: -25
 
BP staff member Steven Goldman
BP staff

Lemppi, there is NO preaching here, and as for douchebaggery, one wonders if you would say such things to MY face. As for what I would have said to Pujols and LaRussa re Beck it would go like this, and it has nothing to do with my own political leanings: "Albert, Tony, Beck is a highly polarizing figure. The Cardinals have to sell tickets and Pujols T-shirts to the entire political spectrum in this country, not just people who use terms like 'liberal douchebaggery.' As such, whatever the intentions or potential outcomes for this particular event, it would be better for the Cardinals organization and you personally not to divide our/your fans by attending." I would say the same thing to any player in any organization who got publicly involved with a divisive figure, left or right. When Derek Jeter burns down a housing development, I'll be the first here to call him out on it, but until he does, we don't have cause to comment here, do we? We just have Pujols, TLR, and Beck, and your bringing up those other things is completely irrelevant. Finally, this is BP. It's supposed to be about reasoned analysis, not name-calling, so for goshsakes, before you start throwing names around THINK about the problem from all angles.

Sep 06, 2010 15:49 PM
 
mikebuetow

Steven is right here.

Michael Jordan's reported quote, "Republicans buy shoes, too" would apply in spades. Why needlessly alienate fans?

Sep 06, 2010 18:38 PM
rating: 6
 
lemppi
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

Republicans subscribe to BPro too, Mr. Buetow. Perhaps Goldbrick should take that under consideration.

Sep 06, 2010 18:55 PM
rating: -9
 
misterjohnny
(925)

So do moderates. And this moderate (and registered Democrat) refused to buy 2009 BP because of the Olberman intro. Sometimes it does matter.

Sep 07, 2010 09:49 AM
rating: -1
 
Matt Kory

Sorry to hear that. You missed out on a good book.

Sep 07, 2010 11:22 AM
rating: 1
 
Rob Miller
(162)

So do libertarians.

Sep 07, 2010 13:28 PM
rating: 0
 
lemppi
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

I'd say it to your face in a heartbeat. Zero hesitation. None.

Sep 06, 2010 18:50 PM
rating: -8
 
Richard Bergstrom

Beck being a highly polarizing figure who Pujols or LaRussa supports is not near the same level as burning down a housing development.

But just as there are some things you might say at church or at a social event that you'd never say at work, and vice versa, I'm not sure how this makes LaRussa suffering from a hardening of managerial arteries...

I don't think LaRussa is an angel.. I hate the way he responded to drinking in the clubhouse after Hancock's death a few years back... but you didn't show this level of venom for him then.

You might want to take your own advice... "There should be no rush to judgment on the part of La Russa, Pujols." Since it seems you did rush to judgement on LaRussa and Pujols

Sep 06, 2010 20:34 PM
rating: 2
 
pikapp383

Sorry Richard, didn't see your comment when I made mine.

Sep 07, 2010 12:08 PM
rating: 0
 
pikapp383

Attending the Beck rally is rhetorically the same as burning down a housing development? Really?

Sep 07, 2010 12:04 PM
rating: -1
 
singledigit

It's funny. The subject was broached in the commentary given in the article. llempi commenst on it, and suddenly it is out-of-bounds.

If you didn't want such commentary why allow it in the first place?

Douchebaggery works for me.

Sep 07, 2010 12:57 PM
rating: 2
 
Paul Andrew Burnett

I'm so sick of all these ballplayers like Chris Tuby and Albert Belle with their burning down housing developments and ruining medical experiments.

Sep 07, 2010 15:54 PM
rating: 3
 
Richard Bergstrom

Nyjer Morgan threw a baseball at a fan and that generated less outrage.

Sep 07, 2010 16:23 PM
rating: -1
 
Matt Kory

I'm sure the ranking system will be all over this, but you, sir, are the douchebag.

Sep 06, 2010 16:13 PM
rating: 0
 
Matt Kory

The previous from me was in response to lemppi, not Mr. Goldman.

Sep 06, 2010 16:14 PM
rating: 0
 
jmb79

Funny that someone trying to defend Pujols' right to appear at Beck's rally would use the term "liberal douchebaggery". Not divisive at all, huh?

Sep 06, 2010 18:13 PM
rating: 15
 
FLeghorn

I'm guessing Pujols went to Whitestock because his manager, a proponent of Arizona's immigration law, asked him to, despite Albert's speaking out against the law. I am also guessing that it was requested by Dick Armey's Freedom Works ( sorry 'Tea Party' )group which owns Beck and all of his minions via their corporately-funded 'grassroots' movement, that Albert attend so that they can all point and say 'Look, a Mexican. See, we're not racists!'
Nice to see even on BP there is a place for teabaggers to vent, and Beck apologists to build strawmen to support his lunatic conspiracy theories. That would seem to be a good example of those 'constitutional rights' that they all seem to think people are denying them of.
On the real subject, if the Cards want to trade good young talent like Rasmus, I can think of any number of teams who would be happy to fleece TLR for him.

Sep 06, 2010 16:18 PM
rating: -1
 
ofMontreal

You were one of my fav cartoon characters and now I like you even more! It was pretty sad to NOT see Rasmus in a nationally televised game against the team they MUST beat.

Sep 06, 2010 18:26 PM
rating: -1
 
Richie

"Given recent public appearances, Pujols can’t be counted on to know what’s in his best interest"??? This is highly insulting, to Albert Pujols.

Sep 06, 2010 16:45 PM
rating: 1
 
Matt

Great article Steven.

Sep 06, 2010 16:48 PM
rating: 2
 
Richie
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

How many pro jocks have publicly come out against the proposed Arizona 'check arrestees for immigration status' law? Soooo, where on this site can I find an article advising those players that they should clam up?

Sep 06, 2010 16:50 PM
rating: -5
 
Aaron Moreno
(314)

I don't think the TLR's and Pujols' appearance at the DC rally was in their best interests, simply because they should focus on winning baseball games. I actually don't care about their politics, just like I don't care about Goldman's. Unfortunately, I know more than I care to about all three of these men's politics now.

Hey, I'm an Angels fan in SoCal, and the child of Mexican immigrants. And I don't know Arte Moreno's stance on Arizona SB 1070. Can't even find it online. I love that.

Sep 06, 2010 17:49 PM
rating: 7
 
Smokey
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

Of course, Beck's rally was horribly divisive.

"America, come back to God," really is a horrifying message.

And for Pujols accepting a medal for all the wonderful

things he's done for children, the community, and the DR is

beyond reproach. Abbie Hoffman deserved that medal!

Che Lives!!!


Sep 06, 2010 19:47 PM
rating: -13
 
Erik Rupp

For the 20% of Americans who aren't Christian, 'America, come back to God' truly is a divisive issue. America was founded with "freedom of religion", not "freedom to practice one mildly derivative form of Christianity over another".

As an atheist, America's direction should be decided using fiscal responsibility and compassion for others, not based on religious propaganda where even the most strident members have been outed for failing to follow their own doctrine.

Sep 07, 2010 03:53 AM
rating: 7
 
Erik Rupp

Also, when 80% of the country identifies as Christian, any platform based on bringing the country back to God is false. Christians are the majority, and if the country isn't running the way they would prefer, it might be time for some self-reflection.

Sep 07, 2010 04:13 AM
rating: 2
 
Richard Bergstrom

I love how the media jump all over the Pujols/Beck thing of late. I guess since they couldn't pin Pujols on steroids and had no other way to tear him down, they chose this one.

Look I'm not a Beck fan, but the vitrol on ESPN (and some here) on this topic is just crazy.

Sep 06, 2010 20:27 PM
rating: 1
 
Richie

You have touched on a part of it, Smokey. (accidentally??) A number of Christopher Hitchens fans on this site, including among the writers. Nate Silver was a big one.

Sep 06, 2010 20:34 PM
rating: -3
 
bbqswinger

I'm glad everyone gave their opinion on the Rasmus situation in all these comments. It just repeats the inane "discussion" going on across country. I read BP so I don't have to read all this political nonsense.

Lemppi, take a deep breath.

Sep 06, 2010 21:19 PM
rating: 7
 
Rob_in_CT

I read that reference to the Beck rally and I just knew that most of the comments would be about it. Now Steve's a pretty sharp guy, so I rather doubt he wrote it w/o realizing it was highly likely to become the primary discussion point.

If so, perhaps LaRussa & Pujols aren't the only fellows who should be reminded about discretion?

On the politics, I happen to agree w/Steve... but this isn't the venue.

Sep 07, 2010 05:59 AM
rating: 2
 
MWSchneider

I don't like Beck and I'm no LaRussa fan but I don't see how going to a rally should affect the team. No one focuses on baseball 24 hours a day. The players are adults; they certainly realize that not everyone agrees with everyone else. Their job is to play baseball. Unless LaRussa is discussing politics in the clubhouse, this seems like a pretty flimsy excuse for the Cardinals struggling. They were struggling before the rally as well.

No one really knows what goes on in the clubhouse so it's hard to comment on Rasmus. The Braves had a similar issue with Yunel Escobar, except in his case, it was his on-field actions and lack of professionalism that led to him being traded. It seems a bit unfair to come down on LaRussa and Pujols without really knowing anything about the situation. But, as someone pointed out, this isn't the first time LaRussa has had problems with players.

Sep 07, 2010 07:05 AM
rating: 1
 
Matthew Avery

This is a great point. To mention Cox as the counter-example just months after he helped force out a young, up-the-middle player that looked like a franchise corner stone only 5 months ago seems like an odd choice. If you want to cite the performance (Escobar was having a bad year at the plate while Rasmus was hitting quite well), I guess you can do that. But Until the Cardinals trade Rasmus for Gary Matthews Jr., I don't know you can say that it's Cox who handles clubhouse issues with young, potentially elite players better.

One thing you can (and always should) credit Cox for, though, is keeping it all in-house. There wasn't any newspaper drama in Atlanta over this, whereas LaRussa has once again managed to get his name in headlines. What a tool.

Sep 07, 2010 10:37 AM
rating: 1
 
JParks

Funny how an article supposedly about a 24 year old asking for a trade in the middle of a pennant race turned into a referendum on the politics of the best player in the league and a manager with a sure ticket to the HOF as soon as he retires. Nate's political legacy holds true...

I see the Rasmus trade demand as a pretty serious leading indicator that the guy is putting his own interests ahead of those of the team. IMHO Cardinal fans are the best fans in baseball. I am a lifetime Phillie fan and can imagine the kind of reception Rasmus would have received upon taking the field after that quote. See Scott Rolen, the early years.

Appears to me Rasmus has quite a bit of growing up to do. Hopefully for him and the fans in StL he can mend the fences with his manager and teammates.

Sep 07, 2010 08:09 AM
rating: 0
 
eeyore
(885)

I have, on several (or more) occasions in my life put my own interests ahead of my employer's. I'm willing to bet that you have, too. A couple of times, I have even demanded a trade to another organization, typically by telling my current employer I quit and showing up at work for the new one.

It has never made sense to me that fans demand a certain sort of behavior from athletes that they would never consider demanding of themselves. Unless you want me to believe that you have always put your boss' interests ahead of your own, you should reconsider your take on Rasmus.

Sep 07, 2010 10:56 AM
rating: 3
 
Guancous

As a Cubs fan, I've seen the damage that hasty personality trades can inflict (Milton Bradley, soon to be Carlos Zambrano).

Steve's comment was a lot more subtle than people seem to think. Everyone should take a deep breath and quandary Radmus onto their favorite 25 man roster.

If anyone should be offended, it is the dwarf community.

Sep 07, 2010 14:38 PM
rating: 0
 
Richie
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

I guess the simplest observation to make is that Steve feels free to offend 20% of his customers with his political analysis of Glenn Beck, while declaring Pujols incompetent of assessing what's good for his own self due to his doing the exact same.

Which works fine if, in so doing, you make 30-40% of your fan base really, really happy due to their sharing of the prejudice in question. Which pretty clearly applies here, and I'd suggest does so for Pujols, too. I posit that Glenn Beck fans are far more likely to buy baseball jerseys than amnesty/open border believers are, while also generally outnumbering them by some amount.

Sep 07, 2010 08:29 AM
rating: -5
 
mikebuetow

Not commenting on anyone in particular, so please don't bother taking offense, but can we all please give this a rest and get back to baseball?

Sep 07, 2010 08:40 AM
rating: 6
 
PeterBNYC

I want to applaud mikebuetow for the first sensible thing said in this entire thread. Steve, some restraint on your part is recommended- you were the one who put this out there, yet nothing you or any other commenter has said indicates Pujols' attendance at a Beck rally has anything whatever to do with the issue of Rasmus' value to the Cardinals. It's a shame LaRussa appears to be letting the attitude problems of a young player influence his lineup card choices, to the apparent detriment of the ballclub, and its a shame Rasmus can't keep his mouth shut. The reason why I subscribe to BP is to get the facts on which to base my own views on issues like this. If Larussa is sitting Rasmus for personality issues, I'd like to hear it from him. Anything else is irrelevance. Wish that stopped people from this kind of comment overreach, but it never does.

Sep 07, 2010 11:49 AM
rating: 1
 
lemppi
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

I wonder if Goldman thought that the 5 Tampa Rays who showed up at the Obama Rally prior to the World Series (that they lost!) were out of bounds. Or were they on Golda's side of the political spectrum, unlike Pujols' appearance, so it was okay? Maybe they should have been watching video of Brad Lidge instead of pimping for the Prez-to-be.....

Personally I'm okay with anyone expressing their views in public at a rally. My original point was that Goldbrick's political commentary isn't what I'm paying for here. Didn't like it, didn't need it. But it was an article that was ostensibly focused on the events of the day...the Rasmus Situation....dropping a none-too-subtle Beck-bash was inappropriate.

Sep 07, 2010 09:25 AM
rating: -6
 
Matt Kory

People might take what you have to say more seriously if you quit the namecalling.

Sep 07, 2010 11:45 AM
rating: 4
 
lemppi
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

Oooh, name calling. Send me a bill for the therapy.

Sep 07, 2010 12:14 PM
rating: -4
 
Matt Kory

Thanks for making my point.

Sep 07, 2010 12:24 PM
rating: 5
 
Mike White

My therapist only accepts American Express. You got?

Sep 07, 2010 23:44 PM
rating: -1
 
jlefty

People are hilarious.

Sep 07, 2010 12:03 PM
rating: 1
 
kentstreethounds

according to what I've read, Rasmus did not go to the media. Somebody leaked the report to the media. He quietly asked for a trade. I have no problem with that...why does Pujols have to tell Rasmus to "shut his mouth" in the media? And after watching Carpenter humiliate Brendan Ryan a few weeks ago on national TV, I am starting to suspect that being a young player on the Cards is probably not a lot fun...

As a Jays fan, I will be ecstatic to send them Vernon Wells for Rasmus. I'm sure Albert and Tony would love a veteran guy like Wells who would know all the clubhouse rules...

Sep 09, 2010 18:33 PM
rating: 0
 
You must be a Premium subscriber to post a comment.
Not a subscriber? Sign up today!
<< Previous Article
Premium Article Contractual Matters: D... (09/06)
<< Previous Column
Prospectus Perspective... (09/03)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Prospectus Perspective... (09/08)
Next Article >>
Premium Article On the Beat: The Long ... (09/06)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Painting the Black: Pedro Alvarez's Trip Fro...
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of Thursday, Apri...
Premium Article What You Need to Know: April 17, 2015
Going Yard: How Bryant Can Crush
The Call-Up: Kris Bryant
Premium Article Rubbing Mud: So You Want to Trade Your Draft...
BP Boston

MORE FROM SEPTEMBER 6, 2010
Premium Article On the Beat: The Long Road Back for Strasbur...
Premium Article Contractual Matters: Diminished Skills and F...
Premium Article Under The Knife: A Difficult Task
Premium Article Playoff Odds Update: Philly Gets a Bump
The Week in Quotes: August 30-September 5

MORE BY STEVEN GOLDMAN
2010-09-23 - Premium Article Kiss'Em Goodbye: New York Mets
2010-09-17 - Premium Article Kiss'Em Goodbye: Houston Astros
2010-09-10 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Man Up, Mariners!
2010-09-06 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: The La Russa-Rasmus ...
2010-08-19 - Premium Article You Could Look It Up: Not a One-Shot Wonder
2010-08-16 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: The Last of The Czar...
2010-08-14 - You Can Blog It Up: The Shockingly Non-Bunty...
More...

MORE PROSPECTUS PERSPECTIVE
2010-09-10 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Man Up, Mariners!
2010-09-09 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Race to the Top
2010-09-08 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Not Dead Yet
2010-09-06 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: The La Russa-Rasmus ...
2010-09-03 - Prospectus Perspective: Waiving Good-Bye?
2010-08-31 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: A Wrigley Rebuild?
2010-08-30 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Going, Going, Gone
More...

INCOMING ARTICLE LINKS
2010-09-09 - Premium Article Prospectus Hit List: NL: Trouble at the Top
2010-09-09 - Premium Article Prospectus Perspective: Race to the Top