It’s almost a cliche when the topic of veteran leadership is brought up, but it can’t be overstated what Julio Franco did tonight.
Carlos Beltran was unfairly booed Opening Day, and maybe was thinking payback when he refused to go out for the obligatory curtain call after his home run. “I’ll teach them to boo me,’’ might have been his thinking.
Franco knows that’s counter-productive; that it does no good to get in a spitting contest with the paying public. Fan, afterall, comes from the word “fanatic,’’ and that was Franco’s message to Beltran. Once they turn on you it’s hard to get them back, and the crowd’s urging was its peace gesture.
Sure, Beltran was upset about the way he was treated, and he had a right to be, but rebuffing the crowd’s gesture would have only further turned them against him. And, that’s the last thing he needs.