I am not a Chipper Jones fan.

I always said I wasn't going to discuss this publicly, but I'm tired of the supposed "Braves Fam" bullying me about it, so here's why I'm not a Chipper fan.

He made my brother cry.

My mom was sick pretty often when I was a kid. I won't go into details, but it's a chronic (and possibly eventually terminal) illness, and I ended up mothering my little brother as much as sistering him since my dad worked two, sometimes three jobs. "Can you fix Brother a snack?" "Can you make sure Brother gets a bath?" and so on.

The three of us also have "unidentified" bleeding disorders, and are treated by the same doctors who care for cancer patients. So when we were <18, we were often invited to Make-A-Wish Foundation parties and dinners. At one of these Christmas parties, Chipper and his first wife Karin were in attendance. He signed autographs for a long line of kids before we got up there. He took a picture with us...

so many turtlenecks

Then asked Brother...

Chipper: Do you play ball, kid?
Brother: Yes sir, I'm a pitcher.
Chipper [nasally exhaling]: Pitching sucks, you should play third base.
Brother: [eyes well up]
Karin : You need to apologize; little kids don't get sarcasm.
Chipper: You need to sit down and shut up.

Now...
1. Brother was an all-star pitcher / center fielder.

2. His wife was correct, little kids don't understand sarcasm. He cried all the way home and was upset for days afterwards. In his mind, a Brave just told him HE sucked.

3. He did not apologize, and about half the parents in earshot left the line and didn't allow their kids to speak to him.

Yes, this is what I'm saying. (https://twitter.com/Bravesmeme/status/252247982739701760)

 

I do not hate Chipper Jones. I appreciate Chipper's on-field contributions to the Braves over the last two decades. His numbers certainly show that he deserves to be in the hall of fame.

However. I do not appreciate fans, media, and anyone else saying that it's impossible to be a Braves fan without being a Chipper fan. I do not appreciate the personal attacks I've received over this non-issue. I do not understand why people are taking it personally that I am not a fan of their favorite player.

Dale Murphy is my all-time favorite Brave. If you don't like Murph - or any of my other favorite Braves - that's fine. I'm sure you have your reasons. It really has nothing to do with me.

I think that's what all this boils down to... there is no shortage of stories about how "Chipper was so nice when I met him" or "Chipper was so rude to me / my family". If he's your guy because you like how he plays the game and you talked to him for 20 seconds at an autograph session, that's great. But I'm not a fan, and unless you are Mr. Jones and reading this, it has nothing to do with you or your personal feelings about Chipper.

Today I taught the Young Women at church about forgiveness. It's something we all have to continually work on. Again, I don't hate Chipper and with an adult perspective it's easy to realize he was just being sarcastic/flippant, but it was a long drive home and a long few days after that event.

To recap: I love the Braves. I do not love Chipper. I definitely believe he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame, and I hope no other Brave ever wears #10 or uses "Crazy Train". And it's okay if you feel differently than I do.

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