Before the game Friday, A’s third baseman Josh Donaldson said it had been tough to hear A’s fans boo reliever Jim Johnson Thursday when the right-hander gave up two runs to the Tigers in the seventh inning.
The booing first struck on opening night when Johnson pitched the ninth inning of a 0-0 game, gave up two runs and took a 2-0 loss at the hands of the Indians. It’s gone on at varying levels since then, all the more so because Johnson’s numbers are so much worse at home (0-2, 14.04 ERA) than on the road (3-0, 1.98).
Donaldson said he was disappointed, telling mlb.com it seemed like booing was “almost like the cool thing to do.’’
After the game in which he’d homered twice and driven in four runs in a 9-5 win over the second-place Angels, Donaldson suggested he didn’t know what might happen next.
“I respect that if they buy a ticket, the fans can do what they want,’’ Donaldson said. “They can boo. I’m not telling anyone what they can do.’’
He went on to say that if the ticketholders turned boo-birds want the best outcome, however, they need to think twice.
“It’s not good for him,’’ Donaldson said. “And it’s not good for us. It’s making things awkward for us with the fans.
“I’ve never been in another big league uniform, but here it’s always been the case that we have a special relationship with the fans. We feed off each other.’’
And now Donaldson is wondering if that symbiosis is over.