Hal Steinbrenner Is Wondering When We'll Forget About Aroldis Chapman's Past, And I Can't Imagine Why
USAToday- Aroldis Chapman was brought back to the Yankees as their big free agent prize, receiving a record five-year, $86 million contract, the most ever given to a reliever.
And no, Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner isn’t about to apologize for the signing. He says although Chapman clearly made a mistake in his domestic violence case - shooting a gun eight times in his garage after an argument with his girlfriend that turned physical and resulted in a 30-game suspension - he has been a model citizen.
“Quite frankly it was manageable the minute he got here last year,’’ Steinbrenner said at the quarterly owners’ meetings Thursday. "He was great. Look, he admitted he messed up. He paid the penalty. Sooner or later, we forget, right? That’s the way we’re supposed to be in life. He did everything right, and said everything right, when he was with us.’’
I think I'm just going to take the reigns on this and speak for everyone when I say the answer is later. Yeah. Definitely, definitely later. That's not to say that I don't believe in second chances, because I do. In fact, my belief in second chances is only rivaled by my belief that athletes should never hesitate to bend their employers over the barrel in search of contracts that are sure to look stupid before they expire. That doesn't mean I am ready to completely expunge my memory just so the Yankees and their nepotic owner feel better about giving a domestic abuser an 86 million dollar deal. Now, I'm not exactly going to be traveling to the Bronx trying to ruin everyone's 'Take Me Out To The Ball Game' experience with some egregiously large sign reminding the pinstripe faithful that their closer locked his significant other in a garage and went Yosemite Sam all over her ass. However, I'm also not ready to give the guy a clean slate, and that's what Hal's use of the "forget" is an implication that's what he is hoping we do.
I don't have much experience hiring allegedly reformed criminals, but I'm pretty sure there's a reason they usually put that checkbox on job applications and it's because we are not supposed to forget. Forgive maybe, but forget? There's not enough "right" things that could be said that are going to make us "misremember" (shoutout Roger Clemens) the wrong that Aroldis Chapman has done. Plus, even if we wanted to put aside the transgressions of a professional athlete the quickest way to remind us of them is to suggest that we are supposed to dismiss them in the interest of a billionaire who runs an insufferably entitled baseball franchise.