Feel Free To Boo Robinson Cano

Since when is it not OK for fans to boo an athlete? I think it’s every ticket holder’s right to do whatever they want (within reason), especially when ticket prices have soared to an all-time high. If you’re paying $100 to watch the All-Star Home Run Derby — feel free to boo Robinson Cano — or anyone else for that matter.

Here’s a quick rundown of what I’m talking about:

Robinson Cano Kansas City

New York’s Robinson Cano during the Home Run Derby

New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano was selected as the captain of the American League team for this year’s All-Star Home Run Derby. The game was in Kansas City, so Cano said that he would select Royals first baseman/designated hitter Billy Butler for his squad. Well, he didn’t. Cano went with Toronto’s Jose Bautista, Detroit’s Prince Fielder and Los Angeles’ Mark Trumbo instead.

Let’s just say the Kansas City fans weren’t very pleased. When Cano came to the plate at Kauffman Stadium for the Home Run Derby, the boos started to echo through the stands. The fans didn’t stop booing until Cano stopped hitting. As Cano recorded his final out, the boos actually turned into cheers. That’s because (as karma would have it) Cano, the defending Home Run Derby champion, went homerless in his first at-bat — in turn — eliminating him from the competition.

The boos didn’t go over well in the world of baseball. Commissioner Bud Selig told the Baseball Writers’ Association of America that, ”While I understand Kansas City and I understand the whole Billy Butler thing, I really felt very badly.” Union head Michael Weiner even voiced his displeasure after the Home Run Derby by saying, “It struck me that it moved a little bit past traditional, good-natured booing, particularly for an event like that, and got into another area.” Wait, so you can boo, but don’t boo so much that you might hurt a players feelings? I didn’t realize there were different levels/areas of booing. That’s just a ridiculous statement.

Billy Butler Robinson Cano

Kansas City’s Billy Butler watching the Home Run Derby

Athletes are in the spotlight. They choose that lifestyle. When they sign their name on a multi-million dollar contract, they open themselves up to criticism. It’s just part of the deal. They know exactly what comes with the territory. I don’t feel bad for Robinson Cano, or anyone else who gets booed. This is what they signed up for.

I honestly don’t boo at games myself. Most of the time I can’t because I’m a member of the media and there’s a “No cheering/No jeering” rule you have to abide by. But, even when I go to games as a fan…I stay away from booing. It’s just not the way I am. With that said, I’m not opposed to other people booing. Think about it – boos are the only way a sports fan can voice their displeasure. The folks in Kansas City could write an angry letter to Robinson Cano, but that wouldn’t accomplish anything, because Cano would never read or respond to them. But, boos, there’s no hiding from those. I think Cano heard the message loud and clear.

What do you think of the Robinson Cano situation? How about booing at sporting events in general? I would love to hear your opinions. You can leave a comment right here or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Don’t forget you can also find me on Pinterest and YouTube, or you can always visit http://allaroundtim.com for more!


  1. Dan says:

    I agree. Boo away!! As loudly as you like. I tend to believe it’s negative energy and a waste of energy but I’ve been know to boo and I believe fans have every right in the world to let players no how they feel.. as long as they keep it clean. GREAT blog Mr. Lewis!

  2. Brian Sartin says:

    Do the fans have the right to boo? Absolutely! Do the fans in this situation have a right to be a little upset that Billy Butler wasn’t selected? Sure. If I was one of those fans would I have voiced my displeasure? Yeah to an extent, but I would have ended it after he stepped to the plate. Why? Because while a passionate sports fan, I am also a bit of a realist. Which AL slugger would you leave out just so Butler could hit? Jose Bautista? No!! Prince Fielder? Yeah right! Mark Trumbo? possibly, but he was certainly worthy.

    That being said, where some of these fans crossed the absolute line was the report that Cano’s family was harassed at the stadium. Should the home team have a participant in the home run derby? No way, just like not every team should be represented. If you eliminate the stupid rule that every team is represented, you would eliminate most of the issues of worthy players getting snubbed. Then there is the whole argument about the fan voting and who should have started the game, but that is a completely different subject for another time.

  3. Brandon. says:

    Not only was I okay with the way the KC fans treated Cano, I was kind of pleased by it.

    Being a Yankee means you’re going to be hated by people, and if you give them even more of a reason to dislike you then you are just asking for the type of treatment that Cano got.

    The only reason people can give for him not picking Butler is that Butler was 16th in the AL in Homeruns this season. To me, that doesn’t matter come HR Derby time, I don’t think there is any doubt that a guy like Billy Butler can swing the bat in BP, and with the crowd enthusiasm he would have had, he could have had a lot better chance than he would any other day.

    That being said, Cano almost did Butler a favor for the next night. I don’t think Butler has ever/or will ever recieve an ovation like that again when being introduced.

  4. Mattyreech says:

    It’s shocking to me that this became as big a story as it did. So what if he got booed in a home run derby. What is he a 9-year-old girl? I feel like if I was in his shoes I would laugh if people booed me. All I’d want to do is hit 20 homers in the first round to shut them up. He hit 0, and gave the crowd what they wanted. Hell, he could be considered a good showman for doing that. He is a Yankee and I’ll freely boo him just for putting on that stupid uniform that represents some of the least deserved championships in all of sports. But, grown men making more money than 99.5% of the rest of the world getting booed for 10 minutes have nothing to complain about. Not to mention, HE DIDN’T CARE. Why does everyone else?

Let me know what you think!