Chemistry is a tough subject

Jim Leyland has been widely praised for gaining control of the clubhouse. All the players are saying all the right things. Team chemistry couldn’t be better, whether or not that is due to Leyland or winning is open to debate. In any case everybody is happy right?

Not anymore.

Terry Foster has an unamed Tiger player that okay’d Foster to use the following quotes about the return of Dmitri Young:

“We don`t want him back, we don`t need the aggravation, we are all doing well without having him and his bully ways he has played the race card for 4 years, he is a prima donna.
To answer your second question.
He was turned into major league baseball because he got to the point where he was out of control. He was scary. You never knew what to expect from him. He reached the point where he could not be dependable on the field.
Sorry to have to write these things about DY, but unfortunately he is not wanted or needed on this team. We have gotten along this far without a left handed bat, and until the trade time comes along we will all do well. I am afraid that he will up set the chemistry of this team. ./././ Can finally be proud to say I am a Tiger.

This has me angry and frustrated on a number of levels.

I’m mad at Dmitri. I’m mad that he’s wasting tremendous athletic ability. I’m mad that he’s letting down his team, his fans, and his teammates.

I’m mad at the unnamed player. While it’s fine to be concerned that Young will disrupt the clubhouse, what does said player think about acting as a mole in the clubhouse? How is this helping team chemistry? What happens if not everyone agrees with him? Will there be factions in the clubhouse? According to Foster, said player gave him permission to use the quotes so the player knew this was going to come out. It’s a tacky and classless move. This player may have had the best intentions in trying to prevent Young from coming back, but he’s not helping. I don’t disagree with the sentiment, I disagree with the method.

I’m mad that I’m writing about this instead of a feel good story about how wonderful the first half has been.

I”m frustrated that Foster wrote the article the way he did. He did very little to protect unnamed players anonymity. There’s only a handfull of players who have been with the team the last 4 years. As such there are only a handfull of players who are all suspects.

I don’t necessarily doubt Foster on this one, but there is one piced that doesn’t add up. Last year during the Pudge-Vacation fiasco, which Foster was also first on, he was reporting that Young had become the new leader in the clubhouse. Now Foster is saying that his same source is saying that he’s tired of Young being a primadonna and a bully. I don’t see how such a player could have been a leader last year.

I don’t want to overstate the importance of chemistry in terms of winning. But as a fan, this just sucks. My team has been a lot of fun to root for this year not only because of their performance. These are all guys that I enjoy rooting for and this stuff isn’t fun.

In any case Jim Leyland has another one of those fires to put out. Clearly somebody isn’t on board with “what happens in the clubhouse stays in the clubhouse.”

14 thoughts on “Chemistry is a tough subject”

  1. Wow.

    I agree with the comments the player made. I could care less if DY came back, and wouldn’t be sad at all if he never did.

    But I also agree with every single point Billfer makes. Having an informer in the dugout especially rubs me the wrong way. Despite any differences, teams need to stick together, and creating a potential problem like this(especially in such a public way) is not cool.

  2. i have actually forgotten that dmitri played for the tigers this year. he’s been good as traded/out of baseball in my head this year. that being said, i’d love to see the tigers get a good left-handed bat for him. i think that’s pretty feasible…

  3. I can think of 8 million reasons why the Tigers won’t get a left-handed bat for Dmitri Young. The good news is the Tigers will have Young’s and Percival’s salaries to spend next year!

  4. I think they mean Dmitri’s left-handed bat, or a left-handed bat in addtion to Dmitri. I don’t think you’d find a team in the world that would trade for his 5M remaining (1M buyout next year), possibly even if the Tigers paid it!

    As it is, this is disconcerting. I don’t like DY myself. I don’t like discord either. I thought the whole plan of giving DY a chance sounded like a cost-free risk. Either he improves and helps the team, or he doesn’t improve and doesn’t make the team. I’m under the impression it would still work like that, maybe falsely so. I still believe he won’t be added unless they really think he’s going to be in shape to help the team right away, otherwise he’ll be cut free. I just hope that’s the case. We don’t need this team hurting itself down the stretch.

  5. This is definitely a bummer for all of the (sometimes conflicting) reasons that you mentioned.

    I”m frustrated that Foster wrote the article the way he did. He did very little to protect unnamed players anonymity. There’s only a handfull of players who have been with the team the last 4 years. As such there are only a handfull of players who are all suspects.

    I don’t like Foster one bit, but I don’t think you can pin this on him. The player should have (or maybe did) done the math on this one. I counted 4 players, only one of which I don’t care much about. This is definitely disconcerting. If DY is a legitimate cancer in the clubhouse, it’s good that this came out (as it will make it harder for DD to bring him back), but we’re screwed if this guy is just an #$@hole. Previously, I’ve given DY the benefit of the doubt because I had no reason to believe he deserved less, but now that this has come out, I actually hope the unnamed player is right…. Otherwise, this team is in some trouble.

  6. It is a bit upsetting to hear this because of the timing Leyland can not nip it quickly, he will have to wait for everyone to return. The young guys are the most at risk as they have never been through this before. Some of the older guys (Rogers, Maggs, Pudge etc) have been aound long enough to have seen and delt with club house problems. What is important is that we have a really seasoned manager here, that has coached some real personalities in the past and not only has the ability to handle it but has the repect of ALL the players and he is not going to let something like this run through the clubhouse. This may be tough to work out but I really think Jim can handle this. He is a no non sense guy whne its comes to the approach of the game. If he thinks that DY or the player giving out the info (and he will be figured out) is a problem, he is close enough to DD to get one or both of them out. Its not like our work places where if there is a problem, with a whimpy manager at the helm and HR looking over their shoulder everything gets overlooked and we are all told to place nice in the sand box.

    I say as must as I think DY should get another chance Jim brings them both in and gets it out on the table. If it cant be worked out then see you later.

    BTW great all star game last night.

  7. Oy. 4 year player, likes to talk to the media… well. Maybe we can chalk it up to a guy who just likes to talk to the press and who’s been disgruntled with DY’s behavior of late and is back-projecting? I mean, I have a feeling people wouldn’t have complained about Ugie being a clubhouse cancer before his psychotic break last season, but in retrospect a lot of players would probably note him as a black cloud on the team, yeah?

    Any way you slice it, it’s messy. The moral of the story, kids, is to stay off drugs and treat your ladies right.

  8. I have to admit, the chemistry argument doesn’t cut much ice with me. I would love to be able to go in to work and say “OK, I’ll work with you and you and you, but not you or you.” Life’s not like that. These guys are grown-ups making more money than most of us can even dream about. Quit whining and get to work.

    That being said, I’m having a hard time envisioning D returning to this team. However, I think it’ll be his own misdeeds and lack of performance that will sink him.

  9. I’m with Anne. I’d think the primary concern would be making the playoffs and winning the World Series. If DY makes peace with management, gets himself into shape, and looks like he’ll add to the team’s offensive arsenal, then the Tigers will want him.

  10. If DY makes peace with management, gets himself into shape, and looks like he’ll add to the team’s offensive arsenal

    Not only does he have to do those things, but he also needs to be perceived as doing those things.

    If he does them, but his teammate(s) don’t believe him, it will still cause problems. Compare it to the Farnsworth trade. At the time, it caused a HUGE perception problem and certainly sped up Tram’s demise, but we’re less than a year away and it’s obvious that it was a brilliant move.

    You can argue that DD got lucky with Miner, but I recall hearing that DD has been high on Miner for years, so i would be willing to bet that we just out-scouted Atlanta on that one.

  11. Speaking of left-handed bats, Huff is off the market.

    Only for a couple weeks… That ‘Stros aren’t going anywhere this year 🙂

  12. I wish the unnamed player had kept this to himself. It’s an implusive and self-important violation of team solidarity. It’s an insult to Leyland’s project of keeping the team together and focused as well. There is nothing going on with this team that Leyland can’t handle–even this complication–but adding to his workload is inexcusable.

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