Clint Hurdle is all that is wrong with this country. The Rockies manager told the DENVER POST that he abhors the Dodgers, which is as un-American as hating the Dallas Cowboys, or Peter King speaking ill of Brett Favre.
I thought that despising the Los Angeles baseball team that actually plays in LA was a right reserved for Jeff Kent (and, eventually, Manny Ramirez, because that’s his shtick), but apparently anybody can do it.
“I just hate the Dodgers. I love to see them lose,” Hurdle said. “It’s nothing personal with anyone there. You know how some people love the Yankees? I choose to hate the Dodgers.”
The rich irony of the words wasn’t lost on Hurdle. Not only does his team need the Dodgers’ help to crawl back into playoff contention, but, in truth, every member of the National League West should send a card to the Dodgers, thanking them for their dysfunction.
I get that, but to be fair, hating the Dodgers isn’t even all that original. Hurdle’s detestations could be better focused; the Dodgers grossly outspend their division opponents, yet they’ve won the NL West a whopping one time this decade.
That said, things are changing. Sorta:
Give former general manager Dan Evans and current scouting director Logan White credit. They stockpiled talent. Starting in 2002, they selected, among others, James Loney, Jonathan Broxton, Matt Kemp, Russell Martin, Chad Billingsley and Clayton Kershaw.
Yet, their arrival in the big leagues has not translated into success because of a flawed roster. Had the Dodgers gone completely young, they would have been better off. That is a hard sell, particularly in a market that demands stars.
So rather than trust the kids, they made some of the worst decisions with money since Charles Barkley on a Vegas bender. Jason Schmidt ($47 million), Andruw Jones ($36.2 million), Esteban Loaiza ($8 million) and Nomar Garciaparra ($18.5 million) have been complete busts.
Andruw Jones did provide a near-endless supply of fat jokes, though - no idea if it was worth $36 million, but it had to be close. To the larger point: Yeah, the Dodgers have chronically underachieved, and for as much as Hurdle can’t stand them, it could be worse. Just ask Toronto or Baltimore.