Welcome to Football Friday, a baseball column by Connor. I am Connor. Each week I will dive into the previous seven days of baseball news, shout my opinion into the void, discuss some things about the Colorado Rockies, and answer your emails. Some of them.
Send them to email@example.com and we'll see what happens, OK?
Last Thursday, in a surprise move, the Rockies traded outfielder Corey Dickerson and prospect Kevin Padlo to the Tampa Bay Rays for lefty reliever Jake McGee and prospect pitcher German Marquez.
The move was widely criticized by just about everyone who could criticize it. What are the Rockies doing? They don't need a closer, they don't have enough pitching to even get them TO the ninth! They need starting pitching! They need an ace! Rabble rabble rabble.
Now, I'm not here to defend a trade that I'm still not sure I like. But I am here to prompt a question that the guys at Purple Dinosaur Podcast brought up, a question that Rockies fans need to ask themselves when they start to read reviews and criticism of the trade or any move the Rockies make...
"Are the Rockies going to be criticized regardless of what they do?"
The Rockies live in a chasm of negativity. It's a place they've created for themselves with unsuccessful teams and poor drafts and terrible luck with prospects. The team lives in a soundproof room where the only opinions that force their way through are negative, and the only analysis you can find is the word "bad" scratched into the walls. Jeff Bridich and company haven't revealed a plan that makes sense to baseball types, so they clearly don't have a plan, apparently. Or the plan is very stupid.
This chasm of negativity, whether we know it or not, creates bias. Well respected analysts like Dan Szymborski and Ken Rosenthal are victims to it. Criticism of the Rockies lives in the past mistakes, since the organization has screwed up enough times that it's easy to look at a move you don't understand and immediately decide that it is bad.
I'm not saying that this isn't fair, or that the Rockies don't deserve this—they've lost enough games that this type of criticism and negativity surrounding their trades is most deserved. But I think it's important to recognize the chasm's existence, and we must recognize the preconceived notions in our heads.
After the trade, I remembered another trade by another organization that isn't very highly regarded. I remembered when the Browns traded former top five draft pick Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts for a first round pick. I remembered the immediate reaction to that trade both on Twitter and in analysis pieces. The Browns were criticized heavily for the deal, fans believing that trading a player they drafted just a year ago was a sign the organization still lacked a plan or any idea with what to do with the future.
But, it turned out, Trent Richardson sucks. The Browns front office may have wasted that extra pick on Johnny Manziel and the future may still be muggy, but the point remains. We've seen this before: a chasm of negativity surrounds any move the Browns make whether it becomes savvy or not, and it's probably the same with the Rockies.
It's going to take more than one good trade and one good team to crawl out of this chasm, the Rockies have had those before and they're passed off as luck or blind chance. Negativity will surround anything the Rockies do and analysis pieces will reflect that for as long as the Rockies don't succeed, and probably a little longer too.
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The Good Opinion of the Week
Each week, I will personally scour Rockies-related Twitter feeds for good opinions on food, music, movies, or even bottled water. I will feature anything that I look at and think "that is a good opinion." This week, the good opinion comes from Rockies prospect (and friend of the website) Correlle Prime who tweets:
Get uncomfortable— Correlle Prime (@realprimetime32) February 2, 2016
On the surface, this doesn't seem like an opinion. It's more like a command, like Correlle is a terrible party host and he's saying "instead of chairs I have these rocks with spikes on them, please get uncomfortable." But I don't think that's what he means at all; I think Correlle is speaking s ome very good advice for anyone at any point in their lives. Get uncomfortable, push your limits, and don't get complacent.
I did stand-up comedy for a little over a year in Fort Collins, Colorado. I was pretty good. I definitely don't have a future in it due to the pressure I put on myself and the nerves associated with that, but I was pretty good. That's not important, though; what is important is that I took myself as a dumb 23-year-old kid and I stood on a stage and I tried to make a room full of people laugh. I pushed the boundaries of my existence and made myself uncomfortable so that I could grow.
It's always good to grow yourself, to put yourself in an experience and a situation you wouldn't normally put yourself in. This is a good opinion. Get uncomfortable. Unless you're shopping for a new couch. Only buy comfortable couches.
[NOTE: We're skipping the mailbag this week. It will return next week. This week we have a special celebrity extended version of Has Connor Been Owned?]
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Has Connor Been Owned? (Celebrity Edition)
Each week, our team of investigators and officials here at Connor, Inc. will look into whether or not Connor was the victim of an "own." For the uneducated, an own is often a comeback or put down that renders the person speechless and unable to turn the conversation around. It's also described as a "serve," or a "savage." I'm a medical miracle in that at no point in my life have I been owned by anyone online or in real life.
This week, the committee has been brought forth a celebrity attempt.
Two kinds of people in the world: People who get the show. And those who don't. pic.twitter.com/Ab9Epb7tJz— Dan Le Batard Show (@LeBatardShow) February 2, 2016
Dan Le Batard is a Miami Herald columnist who has also worked on ESPN shows and the HBO program Ballers. Dan also moonlights as a traveling attraction known as "The Biggest Head on Earth."
This tweet sat up for four hours before someone told me about it, so my Twitter account was just floating around the dot com world and I had no freaking idea. If there's anything that could be considered an own in this sense, it is that I had no idea.
But this also brings up a point as to why this is not an own, DLB here didn't @ me in this joke, he simply put up a picture like a Peeping Tom and acted like that was sufficient. In more ways than one, I'm grateful he didn't @ me. If he had, I would've been getting notifications all night from jabronis who are only about a quarter as funny as Dan and probably 1/10th as clever. So thanks for that, Dan, but not dropping my Twitter handle in this tweet with a shot fired across the bow of my brand is cowardly, though. He didn't give me even the chance to respond and for that, I cannot see the board finding in his favor.
But before I get to the committee's decision I would like to respond to this size-10 hat-wearing son of a gun.
Dan Le Batard's head is huge, and beyond that it's somehow perfectly shaped like a ball. If Dan shaved all the hair on his head and stuck his head on a rack of volleyballs I wouldn't be able to tell the difference until someone tried to warm up with him and dragged his sorry neck with him.
Here's an accurate scientific diagram of Dan's head in comparison to the solar system.
Fifty times the size of Ceres, the dwarf planet! Ceres is a 945-kilometer asteroid like planet that is so big it pulls other asteroids with it, like this asteroid belt separates Mars and Jupiter. Dan's head is so large that it pulls in 100,000 or more Twitter followers who call me names for using the term "Touchdown Tom".
Folks, are we going to let this monster headed freak determine what is an own? I don't think so. This is why the committee has ruled that I was not owned in this instance, the first of Has Connor Been Owned? (Celebrity Edition).