On the drive back from Rio Hondo College in Whittier yesterday, I managed to hear Angel Talk for the first time. It's the call-in show that follows any game by your Anaheim Angels and is hosted by Angels radio broadcaster Terry Smith. Yesterday, people called in whining about shortstop Erick Aybar not performing (although I saw him on Sportscenter's Top Plays yesterday...), how there are too many Halos fans who don't remember the lean years of the 1970s, and other such diamond minutiae. To be honest, I tuned out most of the back-and-forth between fans and Smith: pleasant enough, but dull. Besides, I'm a Cubs fan.
My inattention changed with one Tom of San Diego. He started his call by saying he was a longtime season-ticket holder until this year. His reason for not renewing? Too many Latinos on the team.
I was actually driving on the 5 Freeway at this point instead of texting away in traffic, so I couldn't take notes. But Tom's rationale will forever remain in my mind. He said that the recent influx of Latinos in the major leagues would ruin the "American" sport, that none of the Angels' Latino players spoke English and therefore "Americans" couldn't connect to the players (wonder what his response is to tow-headed kiddies and their Vlad Guerrero jerseys?) and that seeing the Angels' Latino players made any Halos home game seem as if "it was in Mexico," an absolutely hilarious proposition considering owner Arte Moreno and that the team's two players of Mexican heritage, third baseman Freddy Sandoval and closer Brian Fuentes, played college ball and are pochos. Of course, Tom wasn't racist, proclaiming he had friends of many races, but he just couldn't go to games anymore and support teams with so few Americans.
Smith's weak response after the jump!
Smith could've easily lit into Tom of San Diego for his contradictory, racist remarks. Instead, he--to use baseball jargon--struck out. "You're entitled to your own opinions," Smith meekly uttered and said he disagreed with Tom. But instead of calling thependejo
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a racist, or even defending the team's Latino players and staff, Smith went on to extol the team'sAmerican
virtues! He even said some of the Latinos on the team speak good English!
The following caller after Tom of San Diego rightfully blasted Tom, while Smith just muttered his agreement. First time I listened to Angel Talk, and the last. If a supposed homer like Smith can't muster a strong defense against racist "fans" like Tom of San Diego, what good is he for?