We have already established that the Tommy Pham-Joc Pederson fantasy football beef is the sports story of the year, and perhaps the best thing to happen to baseball in the last several decades. The question now is how do we keep this stupid little scandal burning for as long as we can, possibly even forever? Involving Mike Trout would be a good starting point. And there's some good news on that front!
Yes, the best baseball player in the universe now has a tangential role in this wonderful stupid mess. This news comes from Pham himself, who returned from the three-game suspension that he received as punishment for slapping Pederson and helpfully offered some more detail on the saga. Chief among this new stuff: Trout was the commissioner of the fantasy football league in which Pham's distaste for Pederson was forged, and Pham lays some of the blame for the league's deterioration at Trout's feet. From The Athletic:
“Trout did a terrible job, man,” Pham said, with the hint of a smile. “Trout’s the worst commissioner in fantasy sports. Because he allowed a lot of shit to go on and he could’ve solved it all.”Pham did appear somewhat sympathetic to Trout, however, recognizing at least that he didn’t want the job in the first place.“Nobody wanted to be commissioner, I didn’t want to be the fucking commissioner. I’ve got other shit to do. He didn’t want to do it; we put it on him. It was kind of our fault too, because we made him commissioner,” Pham said.The Athletic
Trout, perhaps not realizing how goddamn important this story is, declined The Athletic's request for comment. Thankfully, Pham had a few more details to share: the 12-team league's buy-in was $10,000, the team that finished in last place had to pay an additional $10,000, and Pederson in fact sent "more than a few texts or jokes aimed at me or the Padres" to the league's group chat. Pham added that he has "the screenshots to prove it."
The next step is obvious. We must see these screenshots. Pham is certainly welcome to share them with the world, but I would much prefer it if Pederson reprised his role in this fracas and once again took it upon himself to make sure that every goofy detail of this story is known. Pederson must spend some time before tonight's game against the Phillies huddled up with reporters, phone in hand, scrolling back through the group text archives until we have seen every GIF, meme, and joke that was sent. I want to see a Wolf of Wall Street meme that is somehow about the fact that Pham hit .229 last season. I want to see Pham attempting to respond to that with a Sarcastic Wonka, but the text over the photo just says "FUCK YOU." I want to see Trout sharing some cool weather facts in a feeble attempt to calm things down.
If we keep this story alive for long enough, I believe we can end up not only forcing a comment from Trout, but every other player who was in the league. What comes after that? The league office hiring Mary Jo White to launch an official investigation into the fantasy league? One can only hope!