Thursday, May 11, 2006

No Contract a Bad Sign? Only to Dan

Shaughnessy's report on Theo Epstein's contract status leads with this darn-near accusatory hiss: "Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein is working without a signed contract."

A few grafs later, The CHB, whose relationship with Red Sox management has turned vinegar-sour, states: "Last night, Epstein and Henry insisted there was nothing newsworthy about the fact the GM has been working without a signed contract for almost four months."

"Insisted." Nice pejorative. One would almost think it's an editorial. But it's not.

Never mind that the two men to whom this matters -- John Henry and Theo himself -- both emphatically state that there is an agreement in place and that the lack of a piece of paper is irrelevant. The CHB's tone is needlessly harsh, not to mention out of place for a news story.

Let's consider another, neutral way to phrase it: "Boston Red Sox executive Theo Epstein has worked nearly four months without a formal contract, although he and tram owner John Henry agree a 'long-term commitment' is in place." Or something like that.

I'm sure no one in the history of the world has ever worked a high level position without of piece of paper signifying the terms. Only Shaughnessy could be bothered by this. Let's hope that Theo never signs.


jenny said...

Note of interest: This same column, word for word,is in the Wichita Eagle. There is no credited author. I have no idea what this means, only that I am confused.

"Terms of Epstein's contract were not disclosed when he returned to Fenway in a highly-publicized press conference Jan. 25."

There was no highly-publicized press conference. There was a series of one-on-one interviews, specifically designed to keep the mediots from creating an ugly situation. In fact, CHB himself wrote a column bitching that there was no press conference and calling the FO a bunch of pansies. How soon we forget.

fadedredsoxhat and I had a little discussion going on this in a different set of comments, so, in summation of my general remarks, I will say that I am somewhat concerned about there not being a contract, despite what Theo and John Henry say. Why would they say it meant anything? Theo has pretty much stopped saying anything openly, and Henry has made so many of these "there's no problem" statements in the past 6 months that I've stopped believing him. Theo working without a contract is either a)remarkably stupid and careless or b)deliberate and therefore troubling.

But did CHB even write this? That's my real question. If he did, why didn't it say that in the Wichita Eagle, and if he didn't, why is his name attached?

fadedredsoxhat said...

Chief, I'm with you on this one. Its no big deal.

What Jenny uncovers here is much more interesting. I went to the Wichita Eagle website and the article has been removed. Hmm.

Did CHB lift an erroneous statement from a small-town newspaper "for the readers"? This must be investigated!

If it is his writing, then he is just flat-out senile to forget about the Theo and Larry Media Tour.

The Chief said...

That's not unusual at all. The Globe story was no doubt put on the wire and other AP papers picked it up without attribution. Happens all the time.

(What the rest of us call plagiarism the AP papers call sharing.)

fadedredsoxhat said...

It was worth a shot, right?

So what that means is that CHB is simply going senile for forgetting that there was no "Theo Returns" press conference.

How about Friday? Comparing Hideki Matsui's broken wrist to Joe Theismann's broken leg? What an idiot!

jenny said...

The Matsui/Theismann comparison was truly stupid. Yes, Matsui's injury was pretty gross to watch. Theismann's injury was a thousand times worse. Hey, CHB, did you see the play last year where Brian Roberts' elbow flexed completely backwards? Maybe that would have been a little closer.

I still can't jump on this "there's nothing to worry about" bandwagon. In my paranoia, I'm starting to believe that this is just mostly a temporary thing until the end of the year so Theo can season Jed Hoyer, at which point he'll go elsewhere. I guess I don't really have a problem with this, as I don't want anybody miserable, but if I'm put through another offseason like the last one, I will have a coronary. I bounced this scenario off a few other Sox fans and they all agreed that it sounded disturbingly plausible. We shall see.

Check on the Globe's NESN links, CHB is talking about this in a video. He really needs to do something with his hair, it looks like a washed-out dye job gone bad.

fadedredsoxhat said...

Jenny, you won't be put through an off-season like last one. When Theo leaves, Jed takes over. No stories about assistants on other teams turning down interviews. No stories about recycled and unaccomplished GMs interviewing twice. No stories on Theo calling from Argentina with advice. It will be a smooth transition.

CHB had throw another shot at Curt Schilling:

"Last night, the inimitable Schilling managed to make himself the center of attention again by leaving the ballpark in full uniform for a trip to a local medical facility. Just like Schilling to fly under the radar like that."

So thats why he went to the hospital - to make himself the center of attention. Nice try, CHB!

DCKen said...

I have been reading your commentary for a while since I met the CHB in Indianapolis where he was covering the Pacers Celtics Series last year and was a complete ass to my daughter and I. Neither here nor there. Had to write in today once I read his article. Nice attack on Shilling that had nothing to do with the "story" he was writing about. How is Shilling making himself the center of attention by either A. Going to the hospital and getting treatment for something and not talking about it or B. (as some are reporting) going to the hospital and talking to a sick little kid and then not talking about it??? It was such a hack move and he wrote it like a seventh grader without even try to segue it into the flow (term used lightly) of the "story". He also must have been short of words so he recapped the entire series and then threw in a shot at the Patriots for the way they report injuries. Is this guy even trying? Keep up the good work. You guys keep me laughing.

jenny said...

I hope CHB feels like a real piece of shit for that. It was confirmed on WEEI that Schilling was rushed to the hospital to visit a sick child who wanted to see him. I can only assume this was a Make a Wish thing or something like that. The source? 2 NYPD officers called into the station to reveal the story. Nice job, CHB. I want an apology.

The Couch Potato said...

Jenny - On 'The Big Show', one of the guests (Steve Buckley, I think?) said that he was at the game last night and that he heard from NY police officers that Schilling was not visiting a sick kid. *shrug* Not that it really matters. It's essentially a non-story until the Sox or Schilling decide to say something about it> Leave it to CHB to start the rumors flying.

fadedredsoxhat said...

It was CHB being CHB.

Schilling could have had a hemorrhoid for all I care. It was a low blow. He can't resist because he can't fill out his columns like a professional. He's an entrenched columnist-for-life at The Boston Globe who has lost all pride in his work.

The Couch Potato said...

//He's an entrenched columnist-for-life at The Boston Globe who has lost all pride in his work.//

Faded - I think you hit the nail precisely on the head with this. I've started to believe that Shank doesn't care at all about what he's writing. It's apparent in how sloppy his writing has become in general.

Anonymous said...

Not buying the sick kid claim. If Schilling was visiting a sick kid, why didn't the New York tabs have something on it? I would think that if a Red Sox player left Yankee Stadium, in uniform, in a Yankee van, to visit a sick kid in a New York hospital during a Red Sox/Yankee series, the NY tabloids would have the kid's name, illness, date of expected death, nurse's name, nurse's sexual proclivities, parents names, parent's association with members of the Gotti family, and child's rooting interest splashed on the front page! EEI has't broken a story since it was created, since its "reporters" are more interested in cheap shot commentary than in reporting.