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December 06, 2001

If you're frustrated, call me
By Rob Dibble

Simply put, the fans in left field of the Metrodome were an embarrassment on Wednesday night. At a time when they should be enjoying the Twins' success, their actions were irresponsible and immature.

Note to Twins fans: Your frustrations are misguided.

If you want to get angry with someone, get angry at the front office. Owner Carl Pohlad chose to spend zero of his billions to keep Chuck Knoblauch in Minnesota. That's his prerogative. It's your prerogative as a fan to be upset by that. But the price of admission does not give anyone the right to vent his or her frustrations by throwing stuff onto the field.

Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch played seven years for Tom Kelly in Minnesota.

Knoblauch is a class act. He has never done anything except what baseball players are asked to do. While in Minnesota, Knoblauch played hard and well for the Twins, helping them win a world championship. In baseball, a player either becomes a free agent to get the best market value or he pushes for a trade to better his circumstances. Four years ago, the Twins traded Knoblauch and in return strengthened their own team with Eric Milton, Cristian Guzman, and Brian Buchanan.

Note to New Yorkers: Retaliation is not the answer.

I actually always loved when fans taunted me. I used it as a motivational tool. But I can tell you from personal experience that taunting is one thing, while throwing objects onto the field is entirely another. I know, because I lost my temper and unfairly retaliated.

No one felt worse than I did after a bad day at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati. I totally lost my cool and fired a baseball 450 feet into the center-field stands, hitting an unsuspecting woman sitting in her seat. She never wronged me in any way. She was innocently watching a baseball game and never expected to get beaned by some jackass pitcher who lost his temper. I often think about the "what ifs." What if I hit her in the face or in the head? What if I caused permanent damage? Or worse? I was very lucky she wasn't seriously hurt. I will always regret my horrible actions that day.

Please, take it from me -- don't take your frustrations out on a guy who is just on the field doing his job. If you want to vent, I'm here everyday and ready to go toe-to-toe. Send e-mails to the Dan Patrick Show or send questions to my weekly chat or BBTN Online. That way, no one gets hurt and we all feel better at the end of the day.

P.S. I got my one American League save in Minnesota. I thought it was one of the best places to play in all of the big leagues. I'd hate to have a couple of bad apples spoil the bunch.

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