Joe Torre hasn't exactly had the best PR week in the history of sports figures. He alluded to the fact that he would be open to the Mets' managing position despite the fact the position is not yet vacant. That was certainly a mistake and unseemly. Mr. Manuel wasn't exactly magnanimous in his response, and rightly so. But to Mr. Torre's credit, he did apologize and accepted that he was wrong in what he said. In steps David Wells, that erstwhile former pitcher who couldn't quite keep himself focused or in shape enough to make the most of his incredible skills. Wells came out and publicly blasted Torre and called him a coward.
This smacks the Fan of a kid who made it a habit through his school years to be in hot water with the principal taking pot shots at the principal years after getting out of high school. Wells claims that Torre treated him differently. Well, so do principals treat troublesome students differently than the ones that follow the rules. Come on, David.
The worst part is that this Fan always liked Wells. But then again, we always like rebels in this country, don't we? We love Willie Nelson and get some weird satisfaction from his long hair and the fact that his tour bus keeps getting busted for pot. We look up to the kids in school with the leather jackets and the look of indifference. But sooner or later, we'd much rather put our stock with people who are solid and do things the right way. Wells was never that guy.
Wells was the rock 'n roller of baseball, a trait that made him embraceable to the fans but an irritant on all the teams he played for. The fact is that David Wells didn't make so many stops around the majors because more people wanted to get in on his citizenship. He kept getting jobs because he could get big league hitters out. But he wore out his welcome just about everywhere he went.
But the thing is, Wells has ridden his bad boy image to a cushy job as a baseball analyst for TBS. That gives him a platform to blast his former employers with impunity and where they can't respond. That is its own brand of cowardice. Wells never bought into anyone's rules. He never wanted to be a good teammate or a good citizen in baseball. He was enabled because his golden left arm got the job done. But now he is again enabled to throw rocks in the form of pot shots from a lofty perch that he was given largely because the American public is a sucker for the iconoclast.
Keep it classy, David Wells. Nice going