Monday, April 02, 2007

Blame It On Theo

Argh! More crapShaughnessy has become so predictable, it is laughable. The Sox lost their season opener and Dan spews the inevitable drivel and takes the expected pot shots at his favorite targets:

- Multiple references to Schilling’s blogging. (Curt pitched as if he had “carpal tunnel syndrome” but darn the luck, no in game blogging)

- Calls Julio Lugo the “Bill James-mandated shortstop”

- Mocking reference to Theo and the Minions huddling over the computers this winter to put together $150M+ team that looked so anemic

The asinine aspect of this column is that Shaughnessy goes to lengths to explicitly say that a season is not won or lost based on a single game and yet he intimates based on a single game that 1) Julio Lugo is money poorly spent; 2) Gil Meche was perhaps a good signing by the Royals after all; 3) Varitek and Crisp are headed for poor seasons. He spells out a few other negatives as well…Okajima gave up a homer….and he points out the Red Sox’ swoon last year began with a sweep at the hand of the Royals. Damnit, Shank, this is one ballgame—enough already. (But hey Shank, why no mention of the overmatched Pedroia? He had two hits today.)

The other thing that really torques me is his relentless criticism of Epstein’s and James’ reliance on statistics. What would you have them rely on Shank? Just because you spew your columns with little thought and even less analysis, does that make it the right way to run a baseball team? I think not. You may think you turn out good work relying on your gut instinct but you would be wrong. Instead of castigating Epstein and James, why not do a little more analysis of your own and make your writing stronger? It wont happen though—you are too lazy to be bothered with quantitative and ultimately meaningful analysis.

(Edit: Okay, I need to pull back on one criticism...Shaughnessy has a separate and generally upbeat sidebar about Pedroia's performance. Yet CHB still gets this zinger in "He is a poster boy for Theo Epstein and his crew of baseball stat men". DBVader pegged it right yesterday when he pointed out that CHB's dislike of Pedroia is driven by his petty jealousy of Theo Epstein.)


mouse said...

But hey Shank, why no mention of the overmatched Pedroia?

Because he made fun of Dustin in another column. (Hey, a two-fer!)

God, what an ass. And of course this outpouring of Red Sox affection after a bad loss was entirely predictable. Shank wouldn't have it any other way.

Wayne said...

Looks like Dan is on his way to yet another Dave Egan Award.

Iain said...

The minions now get a capital 'M' - Theo and the Minions - making them sound like a band from the 60s. How appropriate in a Shaugnessy column...

Cormac said...

I have to ask, has anyone else noticed the similarities between CHB and Dirt Dogs? Or is it just me?

The Chief said...

Ortiz (you know, that "sack of sh*t") was a poster boy for those same stat men. So was Manny Ramirez. And Frank Thomas and Ryan Howard, for that matter.

Paul said...

Y'know, I finally figured out why Shank and most of the Boston media are negative all the time. They aging baby boomers (or forgotten gen-ers) who grew up in the area when the Sox were horrible. They loathe new media like the internet due to their techno-fear and the threat it poses to their jobs.

I think what is needed is new faces for a fresher perspective. How long has Shank, the Big O, D&C etc. been at it. They bring nothing new to the table. You know what they're going to say before they even say it. Even some of the younger guys on FSN don't really say anything original or controversial.

Was anyone surprised by Shank's column today? Schilling laid an egg so all the tired cliché's about blogging come out. Not to mention some nonsensical, esoteric references to events that happened a long time ago or have no relevance to the KC game. Sorry, I don't know who Clive Rush is. Boston Dirt Dogs is starting to sound like Shank. I wonder if there's a connection. *cough* run-by-the-Globe *cough*

endangered coffee said...

I'm sorry, I couldn't make it past the Arsenio Hall reference in the first graf. Someone should check Shank's tv to figure out how it remains constantly tuned to 1988.

Anonymous said...

"Theo and the Minions."

Everybody drink!!

Anonymous said...

For the record both Cy Young Award winners (Webb and the Great Santana) didn't exactly have their best stuff either yesterday. Chris Carpenter wasn't very good Sunday.

I think it makes far more sense to take about fifty deep breaths and step back from the situation a bit. But then again what do I really know about baseball anyway? It's not like I'm getting paid to right about it.

mouse said...

Worse, Chris Carpenter is apparently aching. See how much worse it could be?

ObjectiveBruce said...

I've seen many columnists mail it in over the years. But now we're seeing a new phase of the New Media. (You know, the media that people who actually learned their trade and apprenticed under knowledgeable editors are said to be "jealous of")

Bloggers who mail it in.
And Blogger-comment-leavers who mail it in.

We're shoveling the same old complaints here, boys. Nitpicking the whimsical references. Decrying the "relentless criticism." Accusations of "petty jealousy."

Time to freshen up the act.

Cormac said...

I respectfully disagree Bruce.

I think we should tackle this negativity that is oozing out of the Globe in particular recently at every opportunity.

Anonymous said...


You truly are an idiot

Paul said...


You can be critical without being rude or making personal attacks. For instance, you can say "Schilling may be showing signs of his age" instead of "Maybe he should do less blogging and more pitching".

The Pats and Red Sox are both in a renaissance period, yet the Boston media feels the need to trash both organizations. I'm not saying they should say the Sox are going to go 161-1 and the Pats 16-0 every day. All I want is objective analysis maybe an opinion or two if it is valid and pertinent. No "player-hating" unless they deserve it (i.e.- Carl Everett). Is that too much to ask?

Anonymous said...

So Bruce goes blog to blog (including Curt's) in the name of defending Shank?

Someone has too much time on their hands.

dbvader said...

New link for column:

ObjectiveBruce said...

Sorry anon. 10:20. It's not about "Shank" as you so eloquently put it (Incidentally, you seem to have plenty of time on your hands to browse through blogs.) It's about the strong reaction I have to people who take their devotion to a for-profit corporation (in some cases spending hundreds of dollars for the thrill of wearing clothing adorned with registered trade marks) to an extreme where they feel compelled to lash out at someone who treats kids games as kids games and refuses to adore millionaires playing kids games.

My present sports hero is the guy I spotted at the Fens who had one of those name-one-the-back Red Sox jerseys made up with "12" and "Mantilla" on the back.

And as for the guy who doesn't know who Clive Rush was, that's OK, a lot of people don't. But before parading your ignorance, perhaps a basic inquiry is in order.

Cormac said...

''I have to people who take their devotion to a for-profit corporation (in some cases spending hundreds of dollars for the thrill of wearing clothing adorned with registered trade marks)''

Come on Dan, that's you, isn't it? Either that or you are pretty much copy and pasting from his articles. Dan LOVES knocking adults who wear Red Sox jersey. I for one thoroughly enjoy wearing my 'Foulke' road jersey to work on casual Friday.

Anonymous said...

Cormac - I suspect that you may be right - Objective Bruce = CHB himself

The jersey comments give him away

Paul said...

Bruce (or Shank...whatever),

I don't know who Clive Rush is and, since he's not a coach for the Pats now, I don't really care. I'm not a sports historian or a crazy obsessed fan. I'm just a fan that also has a life outside of watching sports.

The reason I comment on this blog is threefold. My job is boring, I don't like Shank, and I'm a Boston sports fan. How does Shank close all his letters...Oh yeah, "You have a nice day"

Anonymous said...

There's a simple reason why so many comment on this blog criticizing CHB: when you buy a meal at a restaurant, and most of it’s satisfactory, but one of your favorite parts of the meal taste like crap, then of course your gonna complain. You might still go there because you like all the other food, but you’ll still complain in hopes that they’ll fix the bad part. That’s why I don’t get these people who say “why waste time making a whole blog criticizing him, just stop reading him”, well maybe they enjoy the rest of the globe but would enjoy it more if the sports section was fixed up.

Oh, and OB, when you say:

“I've seen many columnists mail it in over the years. But now we're seeing a new phase of the New Media. (You know, the media that people who actually learned their trade and apprenticed under knowledgeable editors are said to be "jealous of")”

First, no one ever said “jealous”, people say they’re “threatened”, and CHB’s recent article attacking bloggers is blatant proof of this, the article had little to do with sports and tried to personally attack all bloogers even though most are just harmlessly passing time (how is that any different then someone who enjoys passing time painting, both are “wasting time”, why not start attacking painters?). Second, saying bloggers is the new media is half true, it is a new outlet to get information, but to hold them to the same level of sports writers is ridiculous, sports writers get PAID to accurately and professionally report on sports, so when I read them I expect some level of professionalism, when I read bloggers I know they are just every day people speaking their mind, so I take everything with a grain of salt, look into claims to see how true they are. So it’s real sad when unpaid bloggers are doing a much better job writing then a paid sports writer, it just shows how bad someone like CHB is doing.

Oh and that whole bit about “…people who actually learned their trade and apprenticed…” reminds me oh that Good Will Hunting scene where the guy thinks he’s so much better because he was going to Harvard even though Will was much smarter then him, guess what, most reader could care less “who you apprenticed” under, they just care about reading good writing. I like reading articles that are informative and that I enjoy, I could care less if the writer has had no formal training.

dbvader said...

Bruce you are a simpleton. You dress you arguments in such exaggerated, inaccurate terms that it is impossible to argue with you.

You seem to indicate that anyone who finds any enjoyment following baseball is a dolt. As I have pointed out before, sports fans are no more or less well adjusted than any other segment of society. They understand the relative insignificance of sports. Following sports is a social experience that enriches peoples lives. As it is a large part of our lives, we want journalists who can enhance this enjoyment by either writing eloquently about the experience or giving insight into the sport. Dan offers neither. I don't care if he is negative, but back it up. Dan's rip jobs are so transparent that everybody who is truly objective understands his motives are not pure. Quit trying to change the subject with hyperbole about for-profits and trademarks.

As for the Clive Rush issue. If the vast majority of the intended audience does not get a reference, it is not good writing.

Robbie said...

I think Bruce is being ironic, but.... uh.... I could be wrong.

dbvader said...

I don't know how to read bruce anymore.