Open Memo To The Players' Union: Let Chacon Go
If you walked into work tomorrow morning and your boss told you that your transfer request had been denied, you'd probably be pretty upset. People put in transfer or trade requests for any number of reasons, but usually because they don't see their current situation as the right one for them.
If, in your disappointment over the situation, you hit your boss, or even if you just swore at him, you'd probably find yourself seeking new employment altogether; I know I would.
Worst case scenario, not only would you be fired, but you'd be arrested and charged with assault, because your boss is a pansy and thought your little shove was the beginning of a serious beatdown. Sure, you'd probably never serve a day of the sentence, and get off with some community service, but you'd have it on your record, which would make finding a new job even harder.
Shawn Chacon found himself in exactly this situation this weekend, when he shoved Astros GM, his boss, Ed Wade, to the ground multiple times. By Monday, Chacon had been given his walking papers, just like any other employee in America would.
Tuesday, a grievance was filed by the Players' Union on Chacon's behalf, saying that he was unreasonably terminated.
Reailty Check: Chacon assaulted his boss; he deserves to be fired.
The Players' Union isn't exactly a friend of the public's right now, not after Union Head Donald Fehr was grilled at a congressional hearing and after accusing the owners of colluding to exclude Barry Bonds from playing this season.
They would have been much better off coming out with a statement saying something like "The actions taken by Shawn Chacon over the weekend were regrettable at best. We, the Union, will do everything in our power to get Shawn back into the league and into a situation where he can thrive", but instead they asserted that Chacon's rights had been violated under the latest MLB Collective Bargaining agreement.
Chacon doesn't have a prayer here, he clearly violated the provision that requires players to maintain a level of good citizenship and sportsmanship. The Union should have immediately gone into damage control mode and worked to get Chacon out of the media spotlight, out of Houston, and into somewhere he could try to rebuild his career.
Instead, they chose to fight a futile battle and take another major hit to their credibility. Perhaps it is time for new leadership in the Players' Union.
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