Today, the Angels traded young pitcher Tyler Chatwood for Rockies catcher Chris Iannetta. The speculation is that veteran Angels catcher Jeff Mathis won't be offered a new contract. This makes me sad. I like Mathis; he works hard, and defensively he's a pretty good player. Offensively, he could stand to improve--a lot. Then again, you could say that about a lot of the Angels.
I know that these days especially, sports are a business, and GMs live and breathe player stats. Fine. But I also like Mathis because he seems like a good guy. With all the not-good people running around professional sports, being a good person wins a lot of points with me. I appreciate those who are good-natured; who try to be leaders in their communities, whether it's a clubhouse or a neighborhood; and who understand that it's best to leave ego out of the equation. That's pretty true of how I look at everyone, though, whether it's the people down the street, the guy who collects my garbage, the person who delivers the mail, the player on the field, the actor on the screen, the band on the stage. Nice person, hard worker, does his/her best at the job--that is the way to win my heart. Stats, yeah, stats are great: Oscars, gold records, most catalogs delivered, biggest zucchini on the block. Those aren't the measure of the person, though, and not always an indicator of the talent.
I've always followed the players. I get some grief about being sentimental, but that's ok. That's part of the measure of me.
Go listen to some music: "Piece of My Heart" from the album Cheap Thrills by Big Brother and the Holding Company.