“Jim Ingraham was the lone voter to leave Verlander off his ballot yesterday, and I think he did it for totally the wrong reason (which will be the point of the rest of this post), but he certainly had the right to do so, and I'm kind of glad someone did.” -Bill, like, two hours ago
Seriously, man, TCM does not understand how you can believe that Ingraham has the right to blatantly ignore the voting rules for an organization he belongs to. His post was well certainly thoughtful and his willingness to fully explain himself is completely appreciated on this end, but man is he wrong.
You’re a lawyer; do you get to ignore the rules of evidence simply because you don’t like them? Do you get to call the press and tell them what a scumbag your client because you think attorney-client privilege is bunch of bunk that only protects the guilty? Do you have the right to disrupt a sentencing hearing because you find the death penalty abhorrent?
Of course not. You chose to be a lawyer, and to abide by specific rules in order to be one. Similarly, Jim Ingraham chose to become a sportswriter, and chose to vote in the BBWAA election. It is incumbent upon him, then to follow the rules of that organization. If he doesn’t like the rules, he can lobby the BBWAA to change them. There are a number of writers who would agree with him. But there is no excuse for a writer to impose his own rules on the process, particularly when his decision to do so has the ability to hurt Justin Verlander just like it hurt Pedro Martinez in 2000. It’s selfish, petty, and thoughtless.
If you break the rules that constrain your profession, there are consequences. You can be censured, or you can be held in contempt, or you can be disbarred. There needs to be a similar consequence for writers like Ingraham who openly flaunt the rules of the organization of which they are otherwise proud to say they’re a member. You don’t get to make up your own rules and impose them on the rest of us. And neither does Jim Ingraham.
Your friend and nemesis,
The Common Man