Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Chipper Jones and Twittagate

Welcome to the Route 30 Detour! US Route 30 intersects at I-95 in Philadelphia and goes from coast to coast, including passing through Pittsburgh and the home of Drexel University SMT student and blog contributor, Bryan Fyalkowski (@fyalkowski)...

The Grand Hyatt New York is a four-star hotel in a prime location right next to Grand Central Station and just minutes away from Times Square. Most reviews are positive, but about one out of every five is not, such as this brief, yet telling, account from online hotel reviewer MPavlov on

No offense to MPavlov, but when I want hotel recommendations, I go right to Chipper Jones. That's right, as of Friday night, this 40-year-old switch-hitting third baseman is a qualified, trustworthy hotel connoisseur. First of all, let me explain how Chipper has emerged as a Twitter sensation.

Using the handle @RealCJ10, Chipper has burst on the "twitta" scene with his funny Southern charm and his nightly announcements of who went "yicketty," "jimmyjack," "mammo" or "yaya." He has become as entertaining as any ballplayer in 140 characters or fewer in just a matter of days.

Feeling pretty confident from the positive feedback of his first 27 tweets, Chipper felt as if he could share anything with over 100,000 of his closest fans. The Grand Hyatt New York would serve as the Atlanta Braves' hotel during the team's weekend series against the Mets, but the future Hall-of-Famer was not impressed.

In a series of three tweets, Chipper alienated himself from the chic hotel community while sounding like a grumpy old online reviewer. His first was to complain about the heat setting in the room: "If anyone was thinkin about stayin at the Grand Hyatt in NY,dont! My AC is set on 65 and its north of 80 in here. Like a freaken sauna!"

On a hot summer day, an air conditioned hotel room should be the least of your worries, so it is easy to understand Chipper's beef. His next complaint explained a bit of the back story: "The movie channels dont work and the beds make my back spasm up! Am i complaining too much? Im sorry, gotta vent to someone. Love yall!!!"

Oh, so now we have figured out these are issues that have arisen more than once. Remember his back spasm issue, because that will come up later. Last but not least, Chipper weighs in on the ramifications of his previous comments: "Ahh the power of social media. TV guy just showed up at my door. Didnt even have to call the front desk. See what happens when u vent a tad?"

The next day, David O'Brien, Braves beat writer for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, tweeted the starting lineup from @ajcbraves and Chipper was starting at third base and batting fourth against the New York Mets. Just hours later, O'Brien announced that Chipper was scratched from the lineup due to back tightness because of the hotel accommodations.

O'Brien elaborated: "Not the first time the beds in this NYC hotel have left #Braves Chipper Jones with sore back or spasms. Seems almost annual thing."

Then O'Brien continued where Chipper left off the night before: "#Braves Chipper hopes to play tomorrow. By the way, he said he didn't let hotel employee in his room who came up after he tweeted yesterday."

Finally, O'Brien provided a solution to any future Grand Hyatt back problems, and other issues that had arisen in the past 24 hours: "#Braves Chipper said might be time for him to stay someplace else in NYC, saying he couldn't order room service here now anyway after tweets."

From the AJC Blog, Chipper has missed several other games against the Mets over the years due to back tightness or spasms, but he could only remember it happening after he slept on beds at the Grand Hyatt New York.

Chipper has had many back problems towards the tail end of his career, but this is too common of a circumstance to be a coincidence. During this recent Twitter complaint, not only have we found out the reasoning for some of Chipper's missed games, but the Grand Hyatt New York got negative publicity that is arguably more detrimental than a bad review on a travel magazine.

Although a large number of Chipper's followers on Twitter are probably from the south, many national outlets such as the The Wall Street Journal and the New York Daily News have covered "Twittagate." With nearly 500 properties all over the world, Hyatt should be able to survive, but Thursday was definitely a day that will negatively affect the Grand Hyatt New York to some degree.

Do you recall any instances of an athlete or celebrity using social media to express their negative feelings about something? We would love to hear them! Please share it below in the comments section.

Enjoy your trip back to I-95 and I'll see you next week!

1 comment:

  1. This is fantastic. Only way it could be any better is if you had McKayla Maroney and Chipper Jones in the same picture rocking the McKayla is not impressed face.