Nats owner Mark Lerner apparently didn't want you to forget that Dan Snyder's not the only terrible owner in town. In an e-mail interview with Nats.com (one of the few he gives), he spit through his talking points about how the team is on the right track -- even though there's little evidence of this since they took over and despite their constant previous reassurances.
But mostly he whined.
You fans don't understand what they're doing. And the media? They're unfair and mean to us.
Cue the tiny violins.
"As a fan, and as an owner, no one hates to lose more than I do, but I like to base my opinions and my emotions on fact, not on cocktail party suppositions. That's the difference between a mature fan or pundit, and a childish tantrum."
Got that rube? Leave your cocktail party suppositions home. If it's a conversation you batted around with Winston and Marla between sips of port and nibbles of foie gras, then Mark doesn't want to hear it.
Be a mature fan, he insists. Wait around for shovel-fulls of Flavor-Aid (Mmmm, Grape!) in his twice yearly e-mailed interviews.
If you don't understand all the progress they've made, then the problem's clearly with you. CLEARLY.
"I'm disappointed and angry about our won-loss record, but only because I'm impatient, not because I think somebody's always trying to hide a dime."
But what if you're the owner and you know where all the dimes are hidden? Of course you wouldn't be upset then. You know their secret location AND they're yours!
"I have to remind myself that the job of many reporters is filling column inches more than being factual or informed. It does seem, however, that this year... reporters knew in advance that their stories were incorrect, but wrote them anyway."
See! The media's out to get them. They can't be trusted. Mark Lerner a teabagger? Who knew?
Name names, Mark. Which reporters? By implication, he's painting Washington's beat writers with an awfully broad brush. The rumors -- and rumors should always be washed down with salt -- that were most incorrect came from national media: Jon Heyman and Ken Rosenthal were particularly egregious. The local reports who, by and large, do a solid job chased those rumors, reporting actual facts.
This is a lame cheapshot that reeks of paranoia, and it says a lot more about the agenda and the biases of the Lerner family than it does the quality of the local media.
If these guys think they have it rough, they should consider what it'd be like to work in a real baseball town. There are only two opinion columnists who write regularly about the Nats. Tom Boswell is a breezy optimist who, when he gets angry, has all the sternness of a 1950s TV dad. Thom Loverro is the only one who ever takes them to task, calling BS when he sees BS.
In any other market, these guys would be ripped up and down for the constant series of blunders, missteps, incompetence and half-truths they've uttered since day one.
The Lerners have it easy. It's a shame they're too myopic and thin-skinned to realize it.