Deal with the media under pressure packed conditions long enough and you are likely to get annoyed once and a while. Venting may make you feel better for a while — but it rarely helps.
According to the Washington Post, Nationals manager Matt Williams has a weekly gig where he is paid to call into to a local sports talk radio station. On Wednesday morning he was served up a softball question.
One of the show hosts asked about the National’s struggling young star, Bryce Harper.
“Is it a terrible idea – just a wacky idea – to send him town to (the National’s AAA minor league affiliate) Syracuse for a week, just to get him right?” he was asked.
“Is that just a stupid idea on my part?”
Williams responded reasonably: “I don’t know. I don’t think it’s stupid.”
But a few hours later reporters who cover the team asked Williams about his comments. Apparently the idea became stupid in the interim.
“So, I will caution everybody in this room. The minute you think you can read my frickin’ mind you’re sorely mistaken. OK? It pisses me off to even think about the fact that somebody would take a comment that I make on the radio and infer that I am thinking one way or another. I’ve had it. Don’t do it anymore.”
Check out the video below.
If Williams had simply dismissed the follow-on questions by saying something like: “Ah, I was just trying to humor one of your fellow journalists by telling him he is not stupid,” the matter would have received little coverage. But by overreacting the way he did — he guaranteed much more attention to the suggestion of sending Harper to AAA.
Apparently the follow up questions touched a nerve with Williams.
BTW, the Nationals are in first place in their division by four games. We can only imagine Williams’ rant if they had a losing record.