We're all going to miss Ken Giles.
Years ago, we heard of a kid in Reading chucking baseballs at 100 m.p.h. With a team at the pro level that couldn't keep up with the Marlins, it was alarmingly hopeful to imagine someone in our largely decried farm system being worthy of praise. But there was Ken "100 Miles" Giles, weakly formed rhyming nickname at all, crushing Eastern League hitters with triple digit velocity.
The Phillies managed to hang onto the phenom, and on June 12, 2014, he made his debut for a 27-36 Phillies squad in desperate need of something to get psyched about. Fans who had been closely following Giles' career since the minors were overjoyed to see him take the mound, and eagerly turned their heads to see the speed of his first few pitches. Upon a mere sub-100 m.p.h. number appearing on the radar gun, a wave of boos crossed the stadium - not at the kid, of course, but at the guy holding the gun, at the board displaying the numbers; hell, probably at math and physics for their part in determining the number. His reputation had preceded him so resoundingly that the joke was clear to everyone - how could he not throw the fabled heater for every pitch?! Eventually, Giles would end the game with an 89 m.p.h. slider, giving the Phillies a 7-3 victory over the Padres - the first strikeout of his MLB career.
He would become the only player on the Phillies roster, minus a brief fart of a Cody Asche rumor, who would be deemed a tradeable asset at the 2015 MLB Winter Meetings. Teams, desperate for horrifying pitching displays in the ninth inning, wanted him bad. And new GM Matt Klentak felt no need to deal the 25-year-old... unless the right trade came along.
And along it did come, from the Houston Astros. Giles sealed his place in Phillies history as not only a bringer of heat, a summoner of cheers, or a quarter of a no-no; but as a young player who was so sought after that Houston was willing to part with multiple prospects in exchange for him, thus aiding the Phillies' rebuild with additional resources. As he left town, Giles drafted a farewell note and reflected on those initial boos as a moment that bonded some overly defensive fans with their young pitcher.
But to the pathetic media aggregates of the online world, this friendly exchange between a team and its former star was simply another reason to pull the "Philly fans suck" archetype out of storage, blow the dust off it, and act like they'd discovered something.
Ken Giles thanks Phillies fans despite being booed in MLB debut. https://t.co/Zf5FRKBDGK
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) December 13, 2015
Those in the know saw through the charade immediately. But it really made it clear how much an outlet like Yahoo Sports really cares about things like "baseball" or "accuracy" - things that a baseball news outlet may want to consider from time to time.