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Doug: To stand or not to stand

There’s a big question that every D-back fan has to answer tonight at Chase Field. Do you stand and applaud, applaud only, do nothing, or boo Randy Johnson?

Wednesday night during the third inning, the D-backs will show a video tribute to Randy Johnson honoring his 300th win. It’s a classy move by the D-backs. The expectation is for Randy to come out of the dugout and acknowledge the crowd at the end of the piece.

I realize I’m in the minority but I wouldn’t stand and applaud. There’s no way I would boo. The man had every right to go to the Giants. There is no World Championship in Phoenix without Randy Johnson. I have no problem with you clapping or giving a standing ovation. I would have a problem with anyone booing because he did so much on the field for the D-backs. I’m just not ready to forgive for last year.

With all the struggles of the D-backs, it’s very easy to forget that the D-backs were two games out of a playoff spot last year. The team started to play a little better baseball going into St Louis. They had a chance for one final push to re-take the division. Randy Johnson didn’t show up to the series until the day he pitched. What if a pitcher was struggling with a certain batter and Randy could have offered advice? What if the game would have gone 18 innings and RJ could have pitched an inning? He then got lit up in the one game in the series he did pitch. It’s impossible to expect 24 guys to not be distracted when some prima donna rides in on the white horse, isn’t apart of the journey, then doesn’t perform in the moment.

Randy Johnson had every right to skip the road trip. It’s in his contract and he was given permission. We all have a right to do the wrong thing and that right doesn’t make it correct. Randy caused a distraction at the time the team needed all hands on deck. I can’t applaud that.

This has nothing to do with the Hall of Fame. Johnson is a first-ballot HOFer. If I had a vote, I’d vote for him in a second. His treatment of fans, media, and teammates is completely irrelevant to his HOF status. I completely separate the two. Showing respect for his record is why there’s a HOF, but this is about the man who let the players and fans hang out to dry just one season ago. I agree with the term “salute the rank not the man,” and I would still say “Mr. President” to man I don’t respect because of the office he holds. This is different. The man is being honored by the very team he was too busy to be a part of and I don’t want to celebrate that.

In no way am I dismissing the accomplishments of the man. I think the accomplishments are historic but the human is not someone I support. If you are applauding because of what he did over time and are forgiving him for the end of last year, that’s a great stance and you’re probably a better person than me. I just don’t see why he couldn’t do what ever it takes in 2001 and 2008.