This morning, I was catching up 0n my RSS feed reading, and came across this article that was mentioned on Big League Stew. It is, quite simply the best baseball related article I have read all year. It is probably the best story I have read in a long time. I’m not overstating this. It isn’t hyperbole. It really is that enjoyable and I implore you to check it out.
I hate the St. Louis Cardinals, but I find myself incapable of disliking Albert Pujols, even a little. He is a great baseball player and he has Kansas City ties, but more importantly he is a terrific human being. As a huge fan of baseball, a father of 2 boys, and husband to a wife who is almost as big a baseball fan as I am, I’m not ashamed to admit that this story made me tear up a little.
It is Labor Day weekend, and I think now is a good time for us all to reflect on the fact that there is more to life than winning. For me personally, how you win, or lose, is more important than winning. I don’t buy into the “win at all costs” attitude and I never will. I know I’m on an island when it comes to this, but Albert has shown me that I’m not alone.
The Royals trade of prospect Danny Gutierrez has brought a lot of the “winning is the most important thing” attitude to the forefront yet again. I won’t spend a lot of time discussing the merits of the trade itself, but if the Royals felt that Gutierrez was a problem or a detriment to the organization, regardless of his talent, then I am glad he’s gone. Same goes for Dan Cortes. I doubt that in the long run the Royals will regret trading either player away.
Albert Pujols, and the Cardinals organization, are proof that you can win and do it with class, dignity, and a healthy dose of compassion for those around you. Albert serves as a reminder that who you are as a person and how you conduct yourself is far more important than winning. Luckily for Cardinals fans, they get the best of both worlds.
By the way if you want a good take on the Gutierrez trade, click here. It is from a Texas Rangers perspective, but the points are all fair and reasonably unbiased. A tip of the cap to Royals Review for putting the link out on their site.