Two things strike me...
- Shaughnessy has mocked and criticized all of the attention received by Matsuzaka's and yet he flames the fire with a detailed story about live batting practice. (I suppose I should not be too harsh, however, because if Shaughnessy had not covered it, someone else would have)
- Again, Shaughnessy paints the picture that this spectacle is a unique one-of-the-kind phenomenon in the history of sports media coverage (more layups on an 8 foot goal?). Francona quickly puts the damper on that thought process when he is asked if "he'd ever seen anything like it."
"Yes," he said. "I had Michael Jordan. And this guy can't dunk, so I've seen it." (Francona managed Jordan in the Arizona Fall League in 1994.)
(Imagine that Shank: A media circus and a Boston area team/player wasn't even involved...unthinkable)
I apologize for not writing about yesterday's column on Josh Beckett. Shaughnessy wrote how Beckett could be the forgotten man in the Red Sox pitching rotation. It was an uninspired piece. When I read an article like this, I would like to see insight as to how or why Beckett will be able to put last year's relatively poor season behind him. Outside of Shaughnessy stating that Beckett is not making excuses for last year, there is little insight.
But we were treated to some nice swipes at Curt Schilling....Shaughnessy is wholly fixated on Schilling and I am sure Schilling will be the target of Shaughnessy's annual "Let's drive this guy out of town" campaign. Previous year recipients of this campaign include Nomar, Manny, and Carl Everett to name a few.
I sure hope Shank gets a day off soon--it must be tough toiling away in the sun.