Monday, April 03, 2006

Opening Bray

The CHB's annual opening day extravaganza is a piece of fetid crap. Sorry: We here at the Watch try to be a bit more analytical than that, but just trying to sort through it is giving me a headache.

The banter runs from the trite to the absurd. For instance: "It is Opening Day 2006, all teams are 0-0 ..." he says, a compound error which would be remedied only if 1) the season hadn't started the night before, and 2) that game, which pitted Cleveland vs. Chicago, had been rained out. (It wasn't.)

"It all goes back to pitching and defense," he claims (wrongly), then moments later cavalierly says Boston "will score enough runs to win 95-100 games."

In comparing the Sox to the Yankees, he for some oddball reason singles out a pitcher, Mike Mussina, who threw 180 innings last year as someone who "could implode at any moment," as if that's not true of any pitcher.

And he says the loss of Damon, Mueller, et al has led "many experts to dismiss the Red Sox as a noncontender." Many? Really, Dan? That's a huge overstatement.

And then The King of All Hyperbole reminds fans "not to overreact if your team loses the first game." Per usual, he's conveniently forgetting his own public hissy fits. Let's go back to what he wrote after some recent Opening Day losses:

* 2003: Dan's ready to tar and feather Bill James after the bullpen blew Game 1 of the season, a loss he termed was a "calamity."
* 2002: Dan writes, "[Martinez] had almost nothing. He said he feels fine. He credited the Blue Jay hitters. But clearly he is not yet Pedro. Will he ever be again? It's the big question that plagues Red Sox Nation as fans chew on this painful loss and pray that it's not too late to salvage the season."

We'll be sure to revisit that one if this team starts the season 4-6.

There's something about the start of a season that sends Dan into emotional overload. At least he didn't predict Schilling would throw a no-no as he used to with Pedro.


jenny said...

Some picking of my own:

"They are a Greater Boston institution on a par with Harvard, Durgin Park, and the Swan Boats."

Oh my gosh. No, they're not. What the hell is Durgin Park? If I haven't heard of it, it can't be as big as the Red Sox. Swan boats? Jeez, Dan. They are so far above those things that this comparison is just stunning.

"Curt Schilling gets the ball this afternoon (no truth to the rumor that he arrived here on Air Force One with a macrobiotic chef)"

Where the hell did this come from? Is this supposed to be some sort of inside joke? Like inside Dan's head? I have no clue what he's talking about.

"In a winter that could only be characterized as hideous, wonderboy general manager Theo Epstein walked out in a huff (escaping Fenway in a gorilla suit on Halloween); the Sox said goodbye to Idiot heroes Johnny Damon, Kevin Millar, Bronson Arroyo, Bill Mueller, and Doug Mirabelli; the fishtank known as the 406 Club was demolished as part of the most extensive Fenway renovation since 1934; World Series stud Josh Beckett was acquired from the Marlins; Edsel Edgar Renteria was sent away while a new infield was acquired; breakfast of champions Coco Crisp took over in center; Manny Ramírez and David Wells asked to be traded (and were retained); and Epstein returned with the newfound power and attitude of Bill Belichick."

This is hilarious. He calls the winter hideous and then lists all these things that happened to IMPROVE the team. Okay, yes, the whole Theo thing was mildly hideous, thanks to Dan Shaughnessy!

Minor nitpick: the "breakfast of champions" is Wheaties. I am quite sure that Coco Crisp (or Cocoa Puffs or Cocoa Krispies or whatever they are) has possibly the least nutritional value of any cereal on the market. This joke doesn't work.

Also, I love how he acts like Theo wanting to imitate a genius football coach with 3 championships is a BAD thing.

"Julian Tavarez, who has a chance to make his mark as the Dominican Carl Everett"

Are we going to call him Cretaceous Tavarez or something unique and hilarious like that? I'm waiting...

"Despite the ridiculousness of the winter of 2005-06 (remember when Ben and Jed were co-GMs?), the Red Sox at this hour are perfectly capable of overtaking the Yankees."

Bad news. He says this every year. It never happens. Book it: the Red Sox won't win the division. Also, yeah, Dan, I remember when Ben and Jed were co-GMs. They did a hell of a job and I have nothing but praise and respect for them. Unlike you at any point in your life.

"[several paragraphs of rehashing the painfully obvious while making it clear that he has only a superficial knowledge of baseball and then repeating his division winner prediction]."

Someone make him stop. I can't take another season of this.

troywestfield said...

Chief: You better watch out that jenny doesn't outchief you.

Where is ob to rebut today's post? I kinda miss the little guy. One wonders (oops, how Shaughnessian!) how he would have refuted the foolishness the chief recapped. Probably with a "I am still waiting for the blogger to issue a correction of blah blah blah ..."

jenny: I'm guessing, knowing Dan's fondness for topical references that are presented as jokes despite not being remotely amusing (remember the post-9/11 line about establishing a Department of Homeplate Security?), that the Air Force One reference is regarding when Schilling made an appearance on behalf of George W. Bush (the Shaughnessy of presidents!) shortly after the World Series and shortly before the 2004 election. No idea what the macrobiotic chef reference is to.

Did you know that some longtime followers of the Boston sports scene swear that long, long ago, before any of us were born, Dan Shaughnessy was good? It's true!

Sally said...

I wonder if Julian Tavarez starts calling Dan "Curly haired boy(friend)" as well?

Dan's "jokes" remind me of the father who is no longer looked up to by his kids so he makes jokes and dropes referances to show how cool he is. Only the jokes and comments all fall flat...

dbvader said...

Where is ob to rebut today's post?

OB has been absent since he made statements that revealed he has a position at the Globe that offers him access to CHB's original, pre-publication columns. I think that his little f-up has either upset his bosses (CHB perhaps) on Morrissey Blvd., or has scared him off from further posting (maybe he is CHB).

OB has never answered this question: How did he know that a version of CHB's column contained a reference to Oh and Aaron if neither the online nor print edition contained that reference?

The Couch Potato said...

Great blog! I followed this link from The Joy of Sox and will be adding this to my site as well.

I just have one question - why does this guy still have his job?

jenny said Did you know that some longtime followers of the Boston sports scene swear that long, long ago, before any of us were born, Dan Shaughnessy was good? It's true! Sadly, this is very true. I used to enjoy reading his column. However, it seems that once Will McDonough passed on, he decided to fill the vacant seat of innuendo master.