Friday, July 22, 2005

Bill Swerski's Super Fans

Now this'll probably sound a tad hypocritical coming from someone who has a blog and who has written a trillion words about the team, but today's Post has an article, which if I didn't know was serious, I'd think was parody.

David Fahrenthold writes about some Nats fans (most of whom are from the BPG message board) who think they've figured out why the team's losing.

It's not because of the crappy hitting. It's not because of a burned out bullpen. It's not because of a senile manager managing like it's 1968. Hell, it's not even a reversal of luck.

It's the fans.

Yep. The Nationals are losing because there aren't the right 'type' of fans in the stands.

How freakin' egocentric, self-promoting and delusional do you have to be?

Not everyone is going to enjoy the game on the same level. some people are going to be there to have fun and there are going to be some people who will show up covered in Nats logos from cap to sock.

Both are valid 'fans'. Both paid their money. And neither has an appreciable effect on the game.

We like to believe that we have an influence. It makes us feel like we're the difference in wins and losses. Get over ourselves. We're not.

I'm sure the team does take some energy from playing in front of actual life-like crowds this year, and that that has helped their focus on the field. But it hasn't given them any wins. Their bats and their gloves have done that.

Some will point to Chad Cordero's statement about how he enjoys the way the stands bounce. I'm sure he does, but to think that that has been the key to his success, as opposed to his slider, is delusional. Maybe it IS a factor, but it pales in comparison to his talents as a pitcher.

The article does have one valid criticism. One person notes that some fans have told him to stop cheering so loudly. I'd tell that blue-haired hag to go do something that'd make the Nationals Inquirer blush.

When I sat in the blue-blooded seats with Nats Blog, the crowd was fairly silent, and the person in the row in front of us was bothered by our cheering and applauding. Tough, lady. Tough.

It's a baseball stadium, not a library.

But we should be happy that they at least have enough interest or curiosity about the team as to go. The game experience at RFK is not a good one. It is if you're a diehard like us; we're there for the game, for the most part.

But we need to respect that there are other people there for many other reasons.

Besides, isn't it pretty reasonable to think that the reason the 'tone' of the crowd has changed has to do with two things? 1) Their crappy play over the last 18 days, and 2) The UNGODLY heat and humidity over the last week, which makes reasonable people just sit there trying to survive instead of exuding even more energy.

These people, who may be learning baseball for the first time, aren't changing the 'karma' of the stadium. They're not changing the atmosphere. If anything, they're enhancing it, because there's more energy in a full stadium than a half-empty one, even if they're just sitting on their hands.

And blaming them for not being SUPERFANS is especially obnoxious. Enjoy the game for the sake of enjoying the game.


  • I think you should have to answer some sort of baseball quiz at the gate to be able to get into the game. (kidding) Actually, I completely agree with your post.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7/22/2005 12:32 PM  

  • Nah, we need to keep them coming in so we can laugh at them when the get the Easy Around The Horn Trivia questions wrong.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 7/22/2005 12:33 PM  

  • "2) The UNGODLY heat and humidity over the last week, which makes reasonable people just sit there trying to survive instead of exuding even more energy."

    Just went to five straight games in this heat and humidity and I'll just note two things: 1) I had to take tonight off because of this constant heat and humidity blurring my vision and blocking my vision (my glasses filling up with drops of sweat); 2) I can live with the quiet and the loud fans. The fans that annoy me are the ones that arrive, sit near me and then start loudly talking about everything but the game (like the current situation in Iraq).

    Note on a comment:

    "I would have thought the quashing of the "Guzman improvement theory" (cheer him out of the slump!) would have set some people back to reality. Nope."

    I'm confused. Everytime I hear Guzman's name annoucned everyone around me starts booing heavily.

    By Blogger Soji Slade, at 7/23/2005 6:41 PM  

  • Basil, well, I can't speak for the experience in the rest of the stadium, but my area along the third baseline seems to boo when Guzman's name is announced, instead of cheer.

    By Blogger Soji Slade, at 7/25/2005 8:28 AM  

  • Brian said: "This area is a transient area."

    Thanks for supporting the team. Just one note: while I recognize that this is very much a transient area, there are some life-long natives (like me) that have not actually lived any where else.

    By Blogger Soji Slade, at 7/26/2005 3:31 PM  

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