Monday, April 24, 2006

Owner Bites Man....Numbers Geeks Define Value

I'll get to baseball in a minute, but I had a very odd thing happened to me on the way home.

If I'm a little crazy, please let me know.

I had just picked up my dinner and was walking home when I saw a Pitbull puppy tied to a parking meter. Anyone who knows me knows that I love dogs and I saw that the puppy was pretty well-behaved and didn't act scared or threatened around people so I went over to say hello.

Call me crazy, but I've been around enough pits to know when to stay away and when to approach. Most puppies, unless they've been abused, aren't dangerous. And yes, this was a puppy. Several months old, If I had to guess.

I was about to stick my hand out so he could get a scent when his owner yells "Yo!" from inside the bodega. He yells, "don't do that!" I back off and say no problem, I respect that and start to walk away.

He then yells "How would you like if I pet your dog?"

Huh? Most dog owners I know, even Pit and Rot owners have no problem when people complement their dogs and try to pet them provided the dog is disciplined and well behaved.

I said that, "I wouldn't have a problem, but I'll respect your wishes, it's your dog. Sorry. Not a problem." And tried to walk away.

He then yells "Ok, the next time, I see you with a dog, I'll come over and pet it and see how you feel."

I didn't how to respond to that one. I shrugged my shoulders and said ok and left. He was clearly trying to pick a fight even after I backed off and apologized. But I wasn't angry. Just confused. Did he think I was trying to steal him? If so, his reaction was calmer than mine's would have been.

Then I realized something from my past dealings with certain pit owners and some of their stories. He didn't want me to pet the dog because he didn't want the dog socialized.

He wants the dog on edge around people. He doesn't want him friendly. The dog might be fine around people when the owner's around. But if you walk into the backyard or the house without out.

The amazing thing about these owners is that when their dog bites a kid or takes a chunk out of their girlfriend...they're shocked. Common sense is never that common. It's not the imaginary burglar who suffers. It's your five year old.

The scary thing is that he assumes everyone is like that. Which tells me that he's not alone in this line of thinking.

Personally, I could never live with something that turn on one of my loved ones without provocation. But that's just me.

That's why half the people who own dogs in this city shouldn't be allowed. If you want a weapon, buy a gun. You don't have to feed or train a gun.

This is the last city where folks should have a dog. Yet you can't walk down the street without having to dodge the poop and piss in the street. It's amazing more people aren't bitten every year.

I'm a fan of all numbers crunchers and sabermatricians...but sometimes they get so caught up in the numbers that they miss the obvious.

Nate Silver article for ESPN 2 on Baseball's Most Valuable Players is a perfect example of this.

Albert Pujols is an obvious choice for number one. Noone in the game's history can matchup with his first five years in the league.

But David Wright at number two? Ahead of A-Rod and Miguel Cabrera?

I love this kid. I do. He has star potential. A monster in the making.

But you can't put a season and a half against what Cabrera has done in four and certainly not against the youngest man to ever hit 400 home runs.

Talk to me about David Wright when he shines on the same stage Cabrera did at 19. Facing Roger Clemens in the World Series. Clemens delivers a little chin music to let the kid know he was serious. You know, how the kid responds? He sends the next pitch into the rightfield bleachers. Talk to me when Wright does that against Randy Johnson in the World Series and we can talk.

You have to ask yourself, as good as Wright is and will be, would he rate this high if didn't play in New York? Would he be in the top 20 much less number two?

A Mets fan friend of mine likes to say about Derek Jeter, that even though he's a great player, he's still overrated. And this was after he won four titles. Could the same be said about Mr Wright?

As much as these writers love to rail against New York and big market teams....they're certainly influenced by the allure of Madison Avenue and the cult of personality.

Nice to see the Mets on the dart boards of Middle America finally.

BJ Upton ahead of Chris Carpenter, Dontrelle Willis, Roy Halladay and Michael Young?

This guy has barely been up here for a cup of coffee and he's rated higher than two Cy Young winners, a runner up and an AL batting champion.

This is why the game is played on the field folks....


Blogger kigogal said...

I'm terrible at numbers and stats, so I'll avoid commenting on the 2nd half of your post, but as to the first half, you are totally correct in your assumptions about that guy (I think.) In Oregon we have a huge Pit problem, but I actually like to call it a huge Pit Owner problem. There are a lot of trailer park crazies who keep their dogs from being socialized (good analogy on that one) and then when it tears a little kids leg off they get uber-angry when the courts want to put the dog down. I've had lots of dogs in my life, and even adopted a purported "vicious" dog once and totally turned him around with some love, lots of socialization, and lots of training. These kooks with mean dogs are doing it on purpose and then they act dumb later.

Ooops, did I just hop up on a soap box? :-)

I'll step down.

5:31 AM  
Blogger Darth Marc said...


You were so on point. Pit Owner problem is an excellent way to put it. Here it's these thug wanna-bees who wanna be like DMX in these rap videos. Drives me nuts.

9:03 AM  
Blogger Uncle Buck said...

you should have kicked the dog and then kicked the owner you wimp

1:47 PM  
Blogger Kat said...

My sister had a 160lbs rottie. Gentle as hell. Scary at first, but he was the best dog ever! I have a very good friend who works for the NYPD. Huge animal lover, .. man, he can tell you some stories of how owners treat their dogs, it would make your skin crawl. I feel sorry for these poor animals.

1:58 AM  
Blogger Darth Marc said...

I really hate people sometimes...

4:29 AM  
Blogger kigogal said...

Good Grief Uncle Buck! As if my perception of Red Sox Fans couldn't get any'd kick a poor defenseless puppy tied to a tree?


Glad I wasn't out walking my puppy while I was in Boston recently...

5:30 AM  
Blogger brooklyMetFan said...

That story is a good example of why I HATE PEOPLE!

As a Pit owner I can attest they they are the most loving dogs you could ever wish for - mine just wants to sit in people's laps - It's disgusting how these losers try their hardest to make their dogs hate - I guess they didn't get enough love as children

7:10 AM  

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