New York Mets second baseman David Murphy sparked some media controversy last week after taking two days off from baseball so that he could be by his wife Victoria’s side while she gave birth to their first child. After his announcement, radio hosts Craig Carton and Boomer Esiason ripped Daniel for missing the first two games of the Mets’ 2014 campaign. Both hosts provided their reasons for their disgust including Boomer’s drastic claim that he would have “forced my wife to schedule an early C-section so that he could continue to play baseball.” Let’s just hope that Mrs. Esiason missed that day’s radio show.
Thankfully, Murphy was not that selfish and did what many would have done in the same situation: be at your wife’s side for the birth of your child. Even though baseball consumes the majority of these players’ lives, it still does not take precedent to family, especially when it involves the birth of a child. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and something that both Murphy and his wife will remember forever. Yes, I understand where Boomer and Carton are coming from when they reasoned that this is his profession and it is what will provide for the child throughout his life, but still, in my mind, missing two regular season games takes a back-row seat to your child’s birth. In my opinion, what made this instance more controversial than it should have been was the lack of communication between Murphy and the manger, Terry Collins. After listening to Boomer and Carton’s rant, it’s implied that Murphy and Collins never explicitly marked a date for Murphy’s return back to the team, leaving the Mets in a vulnerable place, forced to call up prospect Wilmer Flores as a replacement. The ambiguity between the manager and Murphy left some of the media bitter about his decision, when really he only missed two games. In other words, if I was Murphy, I would have explicitly marked a date of return to the Mets, giving Collins the privilege to plan accordingly.
In hindsight, after only missing two games, this controversial instance seems rather minuscule and an overreaction on Boomer and Carton’s part. Yet, at the time, if I were Collins, I would have been slightly upset by the lack of communication. Nonetheless, even in the most dedicated and binding of professions, family takes precedence and it’s hard to dispute Murphy’s decision to take paternity leave. After a successful birth, Murphy rejoined the Mets and is now back to his everyday job: playing second base. To put it in perspective, Murphy missed two regular season games out of a total of 162 in order to witness a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence and arguably one of the most memorable moments in a man or husband’s life. In spite of Boomer and Carton, it seems that Murphy made the correct decision. Let’s just hope Boomer gave a big apology to his wife after his tirade.
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