Adam LaRoche: Father of the Year?

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Adam LaRoche retired this past week from major league baseball. Adam who? At least that is what I asked when I saw the headline. However, instead of leaving a game due to the ravages of injury and age, LaRoche chose to walk away from a guarantee of $13 million all because hie employer asked him to cut back on the amount of time his 14-year old son spent in the Chicago White Sox locker room.

It seems his son Drake has been a fixture there for years, with the White Sox and Washington Nationals. Dad pulls him out of school to spend time with him while he travels the nation to play a game that has allowed Adam to earn over $70 million over the span of his 12-year career. LaRoche would have us believe his son being with him is worth more than any amount of money. However, before giving LaRoche father of the year awards, consider some of the following:

First, LaRoche has $70 million in the bank and never needs to work another day in his life. It’s easy to tell your boss to take your job and shove it when you have no financial worries. Who in their right mind really thinks raising their son in the environment of a professional sports team’s locker room is a good idea? Do you have any idea as to what goes on inside one?  Put it this way, if it was a movie, no one under 18 would be allowed to view it.

Second, why should LaRoche — or any baseball player — be allowed to have their kid with them at work all the time? This is not allowed in the real world. As a retired teacher, I have known some teachers who had their kid in their class, but as a student and not as a kid. After coaching my son in football for three years, one of my players said to me, “Coach, I had no idea Joe was your son. I just thought he was like the rest of us, one of the players.” I doubt that was the case with Adam’s son, Drake.

Would LaRoche take the same stand if he was a fork lift driver? Electrician? Cop? EMT? There is nothing wrong with management asking a player to not have his son with the team 24/7.

I also do not care that Adam’s White Sox teammates have come to his defense. Some have ripped into management and there was talk of boycotting a game, albeit just a meaningless exhibition. This is what paying over grown kids way too much money for playing a game does to the brain. It stunts their sense of reality. Would they have reacted in the same manner if they were fork lift drivers? Electricians? Cops? EMTs? Of course not because it is not expecting too much when an employer tells his employees to leave the kids at home.

So before heaping praise on a player who, by all accounts, is overpaid when you consider how often he strikes out and how his .207 batting average is an embarrassment when you consider his salary, just remember, Adam LaRoche is clueless to how the rest of us in the real world have it. It just goes to show, all the money in the world does not help you to fully grasp reality. Maybe now that Adam LaRoche is unemployed, he will have time to better understand it.

Top photo via YouTube screen shot.