Interesting piece. I too believe Mike Trout should have won the MVP. I have heard the arguments in favor of Cabrera, I understand them, and I think they’re nonsense. After spending years engaging in similar debates, I’ve come to the conclusion that they don’t benefit me in the least.
It’s one thing to debate someone who disagrees with you and is able to make coherent points. I’m certainly not saying that anyone who disagrees with me about anything is wrong, I am always right, or there is no value or fun in debating.
But I’m significantly older than you are. Maybe it’s because I can see the horizon a little bit and hear the clock ticking, but I don’t care how civil anybody is: I just don’t have time to argue with people who are just plain wrong.
I would agree. It doesn’t really do any good to name call or simply dismiss someone’s opinion as worthless. You’re not going to open anyone’s mind that way.
I always start by playing devil’s advocate and trying to make the best possible argument I can make for the opposite case and the worst possible argument I can for the case I favor. In Cabrera’s case, I believe that there was a narrow argument in favor of his winning the MVP award. In the end, though, that argument was too narrow for me to justify making the case against Trout. Playing devil’s advocate does two things: it allows me to try and see the other side of the argument, but it also allows gives me a more thoughtful basis on which to refute the other side. I think there is a knee-jerk nature to these sorts of debates where we wind up simply dismissing someone else’s opinion based on our own deeply ingrained beliefs. We might be “right”, but we’re not going to convince anyone by shouting them down. Good post Eno.
It is just so frustrating when it shouldn’t even be a debate and then 79% go the other direction. It is sad that when we can actually determine who the most valuable player is, when even considering the limitations of the statistics and the margins for error that they posses they still point definitively in one direction, and somehow the overwhelming majority of voters ignore the facts and give the award to the wrong player. I should stay civil, and as a 24 year old maybe civility will come with age, but in this case at this time it is really, really hard.
Comment by McAnderson — November 16, 2012 @ 12:25 pm
In reading this, I first thought it was an excerpt from Eno’s new autobiography. I’d buy that.
The two biggest teaching points in my son’s kindergarten class were “respect others” and “life’s not fair”. The idea of true meritocracy is a myth, so its better that we all just get along.
Comment by Justaname — November 16, 2012 @ 12:40 pm
Screw them! Delete everyone from your facebook!
Comment by DodgersKingsoftheGalaxy — November 16, 2012 @ 1:17 pm
I am a German born American. Always played soccer growing up. When I attempted to play baseball (and even basketball) in the States, I was often told to go back to being a “foot fairy”.
Loved the game of baseball, especially scouring the minor leagues to give me an advantage (which it has…I’ve had to step it up with sites like this)
Trout should have ran away with the MVP voting. A lot of pundits simply ignored WAR and voted for Miggy because he was the first Triple Crown winner since Yaz. Miggy is the best power hitter, Trout was the all around best player…that is what the MVP award is all about.
Or a deep love of the Windows 95 start-up sound (correct age range?). The comment was mostly in jest – I stand by my statement on Boston. I’m 25, but a huge Eno fan (Brian, but you seem cool too). And I love that your parents named you after him.
Comment by El Vigilante — November 16, 2012 @ 4:36 pm
Fantastic piece, Eno. Completely agree. Would love to see more personal stuff like this from other FG writers as well.