Higginson, who has gone from fan favorite to poster boy of today's overpaid, underproductive, whining ballplayer, managed to live up to the latter definition in the article by Jim Hawkins. In addition to making all too clear that he doesn't "have to go where I don't want to go", Higgy said:
"People don't understand, they say, 'You're making $8 million a year,' " Higginson said. "But I just want to play baseball and be treated with a little bit of respect."
I about fell out of my chair. No, Mr. Higginson, you do not just want to play baseball. If you just wanted to play baseball, you would void your no-trade clause to play elsewhere. Especially, in light of your potential imminent release from the Tigers. If you just wanted to play baseball, you would have re-negotiated your contract years ago to help the Tigers financially. Which, oh by the way, might have helped the team land you some more talented co-workers. Nope, you wanted the money and to play baseball, not just play baseball.
And the respect comment? Please. Did Higginson respect the front office when Jeff Weaver got dealt? Did he respect Juan Gonzalez, whose mere presence helped Higginson to his best year ever? Did he respect all the managers he had? Now, he wants respect?
When Hawkins suggests the Tigers, while unlikely, could designate Higginson for assignment while waiting to ship him out, the veteran Tiger outfielder said:
"If that was to happen, that would be very disappointing," said Higginson, a Tiger since 1995. "They've had plenty of time to possibly trade me. That would definitely not be the right thing to do."
This last statement may be more laughable than the first. We all know the ballclub has been trying to peddle Higgy for years. His combination of salary and diminishing production have made that impossible. He lowered those odds even further by refusing to waive his no trade clause and not taking a pay cut. Higginson now expects or thinks the team should do what he has been unwilling to do throughout the majority of his career-the right thing?
After all he has put the Tigers through in the public, why would they even consider doing the right thing by him?
So much for me taking the high road. After this article, it's safe to say I probably won't be able to remember Higginson's career quite so fondly.