Anyway, today's piece is about the woes of Terry Francona, and there are many. Let us ignore the sickening cleverness of the canine-themed title and first sentence. I don't see what it has to do with anything, as the theme is not continued.
The last time the Sox lost 17 games in a month, they fired Jimy Williams in mid-month and replaced him with Nutty Professor Joe Kerrigan. The last time they lost 18 games in August, they finished in the basement and were managed by Daddy Butch Hobson.There is something awkward about the way this paragraph is written. The parallel structure doesn't really work. The cutesy nicknames are irritating. Et cetera (uh-oh, a sentence fragment!). Not much to see here, except that I think Dan is really starting to force it, sort of like Bill Simmons and his increasingly contrived pop culture references on ESPN's Page 2.
Something about this passage is incredibly disturbing. Is Dan seriously telling us that the media is just standing around watching Francona spit up blood? And then when he tells them he's overdosed on blood-thinners, they shrug and continue to hammer him with Manny questions? What would they do if they were interviewing Theo and he suddenly passed out at their feet? Write "the strain of a failed season in which nearly every move has been questioned finally got to Epstein yesterday blah blah blah" and walk away? If I'm talking to a guy who is coughing up blood into a towel, I'm going to stop talking to him, ask him if he's OK, and find somebody to help him. I'm sure as hell not going to keep asking him questions. This is really weird.
And what is this doing to Terry Francona, the manager of the 2006 Sox? He was coughing up blood and spitting it into a towel while he answered questions after yesterday's loss.
``I might have OD'd on my blood thinners," explained the beleaguered manager. ``I think I took too much."
Filling out his lineup card has become more difficult than organic chemistry.He wanted to make an analogy to the hardest thing he could think of and all he came up with was organic chemistry? That's the hardest thing he could think of? What kind of courses did he take in college?
The Sox-Held-Hostage-By-Manny-Tour takes a toll on everyone.I actually do appreciate his clarification of the "Sox-Held-Hostage-By-Manny-Tour" reference, and I think it's fairly accurate, but let's not fool ourselves, faking it exactly what he's suggesting that Manny's doing, even if he doesn't want to say it. And that phrase is completely ruined by having too many hyphens in it. Maybe if he used quotation marks?
This is not to suggest that Manny Ramírez is faking, but his curious on-again, off-again availability -- coupled with the increasingly frequent necessity to remove him from games -- gives the manager fits and is taking the team down.
When the lineup's finished, Francona talks with pitching coach Dave Wallace to see who's available in the bullpen and who can start the next day. The bullpen situation is ever-dicey. Mike Timlin has morphed into Steve Crawford, Keith Foulke is always hurt, and the others besides Jonathan Papelbon are either not ready or over the hill.And then whatever the answer, Francona inevitably misuses them. Perhaps Dan should tell him that Mike Timlin has morphed into Steve Crawford, because I don't think he knows. I've been pretty disgusted with the bullpen management the last few nights. Where is Manny Delcarmen?
Jon Lester was sent home yesterday because his back hurts in the aftermath of a car accident last week on Storrow Drive. Reminds me of the 1970s when Reggie Cleveland and Rogelio Moret both got into crashes and Bill Lee said, ``We don't need a pitching coach, we need driver's ed."Lester was rear-ended. It was the other guy's fault. He doesn't need driver's ed.
Still wondering why Theo Epstein never signed his contract? The young GM was in Seattle with his free-falling team over the weekend, and who could blame him if he took a cue from thoseFirst of all, do we need to be reminded that Theo is "young" in every single paragraph about him? At what point does this stop? Yes, Dan, we know that he is only 32, which is younger than you. Given that he has accomplished a lot more than you have in two-thirds the time, you shouldn't exactly be advertising this fact. It's not making you look superior to him.
Southwest Airlinescommercials that feature an embarrassing moment followed by the question, ``Want to get away?"
Also, this contract business again? Why? Does Dan know for sure that it hasn't been signed? Theo has been more secretive than a Swiss bank when it comes to his private business, so I don't know how anything has been added to this story since Dan "broke" it in May. And why do I get the feeling that he is indirectly accusing Theo of planning to cut and run?
Oakland tonight. Day 8 of the Sox Held Hostage By Manny Tour.Ah, he took my advice about the hyphens. Thanks.