I have heard some extraordinarily dumb comments made in the last 24-36 hours since the Sox activated Carlos Quentin and optioned Brian Anderson down to Charlotte.
First off, it seems like Sox fans were more outraged about Anderson being sent out than they were happy about Quentin's return. That doesn't make sense to me. The Sox and their fans had to wait almost two months to get their starting left fielder back. The addition of Quentin to the 25-man roster makes the Sox a better team, even if we don't know how healthy Quentin is or how productive he will be.
Secondly, the talk-show meatheads and apparently some e-mailers have suggested that Anderson was sent down and DeWayne Wise was retained because Ozzie Guillen is a racist. Whoa. The people who are saying that stuff need to check themselves, because that argument can be turned around rather easily.
A lot of people believe Guillen has something personal against Anderson, and they keep citing the same circumstantial anecdotes to support their claims. For some reason, they've taken that to the nth degree and suggested the personal stuff is racially motivated.
Well, you know what? There are plenty of circumstantial anecdotes that suggest that some fans have a personal vendetta against Wise. For example, the man was BOOED ON OPENING DAY. That was totally uncalled for.
Coming into Tuesday's action, Wise is batting .196 with a homer and seven RBIs. That's definitely terrible. I don't have a problem with anybody who is booing Wise right now, because we're 91 games into the season and his performance has been poor.
Wise isn't the only .196 hitter in MLB getting booed (see Kearns, Austin). But booing a guy on Opening Day, before he even gets a chance to prove himself, before he has failed at his job, suggests something personal against that player.
I'm not going to say the Opening Day booing was racist. That's a crazy, stupid argument. But it's no more crazy or stupid than saying Ozzie Guillen sent Brian Anderson to the minors because he's white. That's hyperbole. It's exaggerating the argument to the nth degree, and it's embarrassing. But here's my point: When you play the race card, that can be thrown back in your face without too much trouble. People should be more careful before they make reckless accusations like that.
Anderson is a career .225 hitter who was hitting .238 with only two home runs this season. He has not capitalized on his opportunities. I think all Sox fans are disappointed in his lack of development as a hitter. Unfortunately, some fans are taking their frustrations out on Guillen, who probably deserves only a small fraction of the blame for Anderson's struggles. He certainly doesn't deserve to be called a racist.