Joc Pederson staring down a heckler after hitting a nuke is what baseball is all about
The post-COVID return to normalcy at sporting events has led to a boom in verbal altercations between players and fans. There's been much debate on how players should handle these situations. Kyrie Irving went the double bird route with Boston Celtics fans last week, and Cleveland Guardians outfielder Myles Straw went the climb-the-fence route with New York Yankees fans over the weekend.
The best way to handle these hecklers is by doing what San Francisco Giants slugger Joc Pederson did to a few Milwaukee Brewers fans on Monday night -- literally shut them up. Well, first Pederson told them to shut up, then he promptly shut them up with an absolute nuke to deep center, giving the Giants the lead in the top of the eighth:
That, friends, is how it's done. Just go full alpha on their ass and silence the haters. To deep center, no less. Savage.
Got heem indeed. Joc wasn't quite done with the fan after the ball went over the wall (and off the freaking scoreboard), either. After touching home plate, he dropped what we'll go ahead and call a "not safe for work" line. Earmuffs, kids:
Too far, or good ol' fashioned family fun? Either way, these fans probably deserved it. The cherry on top? The Brewers went on to tie the game in the bottom of the eighth, but then gave up another two-run bomb in the top of the ninth to center fielder Luis Gonzalez, which ended up being the difference in a 4-2 Giants win. Last laugh for SF, last laugh for Joc, Brewers fans go home sad.
The best part, though, came well after the game, when Pederson was being interviewed on TV and was asked about the situation. Here was his A+++++ response:
Perfect. This is the best case for why heckling is actually bad. Not because players can't take it or fans shouldn't, but because more often than not you might fire the guy up and it might lead to said guy ripping your team's heart out (see: Miller, Reggie).