That Didn't Take Long At All

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The anti-vuvuzela backlash is here, and it is being led by Marlins players. Via Joe Capozzi:
"It was awful, awful. I can't tell you how awful it was," said outfielder Cody Ross.

"That was the worst handout or giveaway I've ever been a part of in baseball," said Dan Uggla, who wore earplugs. "This isn’t soccer. I know the World Cup is going on but this is baseball."
Even the easygoing Chris Coghlan complained that he couldn't sleep last night due to the ringing in his ears.Of course, the worst case of sour grapes came from Rays manager Joe Maddon, who otherwise seems like a nice guy. "I really believe the horns should be banned from Major League Baseball," he said after the game. Someone has been spending too much time around Yankee Stadium, if you ask me.

In fact, the only real legitimate criticism of the vuvuzela-like horns given out at last night's game came from local radio host Jorge Sedano, who noted in successive tweets, "The Marlins Vuvuzela's sound like party favors.... like horns from new years eve..." and "Need more bass in my vuvuzela." 

He's right. At game seven of the 1997 World Series, we sat in front of a man with a vuvuzela at Joe Robbie Stadium (we thought it was pretty annoying, until the Marlins won the game and the series, at which point we hugged the dude and he let us take the vuvuzela for a test drive. Honestly, at that moment we would have been hugging Saddam Hussein if he was sitting behind us). A true vuvuzela has a trumpet-like mouthpiece on the front end. Last night's horns appear to be more like a large kazoo. The two sound completely different, as Sedano noted. So instead of getting a loud drone with a solid bottom as we have been hearing at World Cup matches, last night's game sounded like it was being played in the midst of a swarm of bees.

Regardless, I dug it. The problem with Marlins games is that the usually small crowds create a relatively sedate atmosphere even during the more exciting moments. Last night was different. Every beat writer I follow on Twitter noticed the difference, and even though they were for the most part annoyed by the horns, they appreciated the energy at the park, it seemed. So here's my rebuttal to the players' protests after the game:
  1. I have a feeling there would be less grousing about the horns had the Marlins not lost in extra innings despite scoring 8 runs. Fredi Gonzalez admitted as much, saying, "I think 11 walks from the bullpen that puts a dagger in your heart."
  2. About twice a year we have to listen to one Marlins player lamenting the fact that they play 81 home games a year at a mostly empty stadium where the visiting team's fans will occasionally drown out the handful of Marlins' fans. Now that the fans have a device that amps up the in-stadium noise and energy, they hate it. Get over it, dudes. Sun Life Stadium will never be Busch Stadium, so take what you can get. 
  3. I alluded to it earlier, but will mention it again: Do you really want the Marlins to be like the Yankees when it comes to fan relations? The correct answer is no.
Rant concluded. If you need me, I'll be looking for vuvuzelas on eBay.

Update: Once again, via Igor, this is a vuvuzela. Sounds great, but Igor needs to do some breathing exercises to build up that lung capacity.

Image via Palm Beach Post


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