Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Jersey Debate

(Two blog posts in less than an hour? I must be really bored lol)

For those who don't know me personally (which is probably 99% of anybody reading this), I am a jersey addict. Having a discount on merchandise is a huge cause of my addiction.

To give a little bit of background on my addiction, and why these two pictures are being shown, I shall explain.

I went back to paying attention to the Jays after my "emo-before-it-was-cool-minus-the-bad-hair-and-makeup" teenager phase in July of 2003. At that point, since I was in college, I couldn't exactly afford a jersey though I truly wanted one. Not only did I want one, but I wanted one crested with "Hinske 11". Obviously, times have changed since at the end of 2003 I met Josh Towers briefly a few days after he pitched an amazing game against the Orioles (which if I remember correctly brought his record to 9-1) and he was seriously the awesomest player I had met so far. In 2004, I truly started to go to more games (of course right after the True Jays Rewards promotion ended) and my money situation looked up so I got a Towers jersey for my birthday. It was the first of many jerseys to come. But it was also the first to make it a tiny bit unbearable to wear.

Jays fans don't need to be reminded of every one of Josh's years pitching for the Jays except for what is known as "his career year" or the contract he was given after "his career year" so I'll spare the details. But to get back on topic somewhat, I actually had to stop wearing my Towers jerseys (I got one for free) at Jays games because I was being personally heckled and threatened by Jays "fans" who attended the games. At one point, it got so bad that one of my friends wore her Shea Hillenbrand jersey so "fans" could focus their hatred on her instead of me.

Where am I going with this? A vent. Yes, I've already broken my New Year's resolution.

The Towers jersey incidents were the first in what would actually happen pretty much almost every season since. I won't go into too much detail, but here is my list of jerseys and the amount if applicable. They are also listed in chronological order post-Towers.

Rios - Got the jersey in 2005 (his second season in the MLB). Most Jays "fans" at the games didn't know that at the time he was one of the top prospects in the Organization. So I received, "Who the F*** is that?" comments.

McGowan (2) - The first one I got was back when he wore #40 and didn't really show any of the potential he had. Obviously, that automatically meant he "sucked" to Jays fans. At least until his almost no-no against the Rockies (still hate you, Jeff Baker). So the next season, I got a new road jersey with #29, then he fell apart and hasn't pitched since.

Janssen (3) - Bought his jersey 2 days after the home opener in 2007. I think the worst comment received was in a Pizza Pizza one night after a game. "You have a jersey for the set-up guy? Ah. You must think he's hot, then." Because, of course, I am a female Baseball fan so that must be the only reason.

Inglett (3) - Started to like him back when we saw the Bisons play the formerly-known-as-Skychiefs in Alliance Bank Stadium. I bought my first Inglett jersey truthfully because of how nice he was to me after meeting him. I seriously didn't know much about how he played. That whole season, in which Gibby dubbed him "Voodoo Joe", he had Yo-Yo syndrome without really being sent down due to injuries. He was a bright spot in another unremarkable season for the Jays. Which, obviously, was unknown to Jays "fans" in 2009 since one night I was being personally heckled so bad that I had to get the Ushering supervisors involved. It takes a LOT for me to do that. Anyhoo, I digress :)

Scutaro - I've liked him since he was an A. Since he became a Jay, I had contemplated getting his jersey but I didn't get around to it because Jingles got in the way :P Finally got it the same day I inadvertently professed my "love" for him during Fan Club Batting Practice *facepalm*. Since I got this jersey in 2009, aka a season of awesomeness for Mr. Scutaro, I received zero criticism.

Cecil - The last jersey I got, thanks to free cresting. Since I got it at the end of the 2009 season as a birthday gift, people had stopped going to the games and didn't really care. Actually, the only "criticism" (which was in jest) I got was from Josh Towers the day he was called up by the Yankees.

So here's the deal. Is there any good reason why I should be criticized personally because I don't have a Halladay/Wells/Hill/Lind jersey? Is there something wrong with rooting for the underdogs? Heck, we're all Jays fans, we're all rooting for the underdogs as it is. Does it make me a bad fan because I get the "reject" jerseys?

I'm proud to support my team, and I'm proud to support my favourite players. Is it such a bad thing to have pride in the team you love, despite all of the BS going on in the organization? My butt is in my seat 81 home games a season plus a handful of road games and each day I wear a jersey. How does that deserve personal insults? It's something I will never understand.

Which begs the question and another debate....whose jersey will I be getting this season? :P

(Side note: Jersey underdogs apparently only apply to my Jays jerseys. Non-Jays jerseys: Morneau - Team Canada, Arroyo - Reds, Braun - Team USA)

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