Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Elijah Dukes deserves praise; not punishment

Elijah Dukes has gotten himself into plenty of trouble in the past for poor off-the-field behavior.

So what happens when he goes above and beyond to do what's right?

The Washington Nationals … worst in MLB in on- and off-field relations … decide to punish him.

By now, you’ve probably heard the story of how Dukes was benched and fined $500 for being late to last Saturday’s game vs. the Florida Marlins.

But in his defense, he was at a local Little League signing autographs, speaking to players and watching a parade.

Evidently, since Duke was late (for warm-ups, not the game) and the event was not sponsored by the Nationals, he was made an example of by team management.

So now, it appears that the message to Nationals players is not to do anything nice on your own because you could face discipline. (One must wonder if Dukes would’ve faced repercussions if the event had been sponsored by the Nationals.)

The Nationals need all the help they can in the community, as well as on the field. This poor judgment by team management matches the team’s record … which is worst in MLB.

The Great Falls Little League, where Dukes was speaking, says it will pay the $500 fine (even though $500 is like pennies to a MLB player.)

But this is not about money; it’s about principle. And the Washington Nationals have truly blown it off the field, just as they so often do between the lines.

1 comment:

sam said...

This guy has taken plenty of criticism for the stuff he has done wrong. Why would the Nationals do this to him when he does something right?