When New York Times Eric Lichtblau wrote an essay in this Sunday's Times about baseball, heroes and bonding with his sons, San Francisco Giants Buster Posey received a mention — but not in a good way.
Lichtblau, who embarked on a five-day, eight baseball-game trip with his sons, wrote about his disappointment in Posey when the catcher waved his son off — twice — when asked for an autograph. The incident provided a "life lesson," Lichtblau wrote, "about the way heroes can disappoint us."
Heartbroken, Lichtblau's son, who happens to idolize Posey, called Posey a "jerk." That comment didn't go down too well with Posey fans, with many calling Lichtblau out on Twitter. Posey, who himself is the father of twins, is known to be one of the nicest players on the team, and spends a lot of time volunteering for different causes.
"Shaming a person for not doing something they are not required to do is crazy. Your life lesson is from a very entitled POV," one person wrote.
"Cheapshot," another said.
But others backed Lichtblau up: "Sad to see the great Buster Posey shrug off @EricLichtblau's son," one tweet said.
"Maybe Buster will be shamed into making amends!" Lichtblau replied.
SFGate's John Shea chimed in, saying that maybe the way Lichtblau had gone about helping his son get the autograph was all wrong.
Lichtblau was waiting with his son Andrew outside the visitors' clubhouse at Wrigley Field after the Giants lost to the Cubs, orange "Posey for Prez!" sign in hand. Five other Giants, including Madison Bumgarner, signed autographs as they made their way to the bus. When Posey showed up. Andrew yelled out "Mr. Posey! Mr. Posey! Could I get your autograph?” and Lichtblau held the “Posey for Prez!” sign over his head, but no luck.
"He always seemed to be smiling in his commercials, but now he just looked annoyed as he walked away," Lichtblau wrote. “Maybe he’s just having a bad night," he told his son.
The next day Andrew went back again, but this time Posey "didn't even look up." The "Posey for Prez!" sign ended up in the trash.
"Don’t hold a “Posey for Prez!” sign over your kid’s head when he’s seeking an autograph," Shea offered as advice to parents. "The less you’re involved, the better. The further you’re away, the better. The fewer props, the better. The less you say, the better."
And sometimes, he added, "heroes can disappoint us."
@EricLichtblau I guess u or ur son believed u/him were entitled an autograph? Otherwise I don't see a reason to say Posey is a jerk?
— Nick Matteoli (@NickMatteoli) September 1, 2015
@EricLichtblau next on your agenda should be Mark Zuckerberg and give us a good report on how that goes thanks so much
— Ricardo morales (@Kcirselarom) September 1, 2015
@EricLichtblau your article on baseball & Buster Posey illustrates your lack of understanding the game, especially what a catcher does.
— christopher (@corwinatorx) September 1, 2015
Maybe Buster will be shamed into making amends! Thanks, Shane https://t.co/cPVXSWAdq2
— Eric Lichtblau-NYT (@EricLichtblau) August 31, 2015
— David Joachim, NYT (@davidjoachim) August 31, 2015