I'm not talking about obvious examples, like if Andruw Jones were to squish out of the visitor's dugout, or every time Gary Sheffield and his collection of burnt bridges come back to Dodger Stadium. I'm talking about fan favorites. Joe Beimel got booed. Eric Gagne got booed. Same with Mike Piazza, Paul Lo Duca and Shawn Green.
Nomar, the biggest pre-Manny fan favorite in years, received probably 75 percent cheers as an A's player at Dodger Stadium last month. What was the other 25 percent thinking?
Nomar came up during an A's rally, which accounts for some of the negative reaction. But the overall reason behind the booing is quite simple: Most Dodger fans are just that: fans of the team. Call it rooting for laundry if you want, but there's very much an if-you're-not-with-us-you're-against-us attitude at Dodger Stadium — a mindset that works equally well for all levels of fans.
The booing may not be becoming, but it's convenient and unifying...like those other crowd pleasers, the wave and beach balls. Consider these quirks a price for consistently having among the best attendance in the majors. After all, no one can hear you being classy.
photo by Winslow Townson/AP