Sunday, November 11, 2007

Hypocrisy and other nonsense

Today, Shank meets his quarterly requirement to have a picked up pieces column

With the Celtics doing well and with a roster of what seem to be “good guys”, I was wondering what angle Shank would take with the Celts to spew sarcasm…would it be a litany of “thanksdad” references? Rick Pitino hits? Or how about even Jesus Shuttlesworth mentions? Well, today, he uses one of his favorite techniques,,,,the “Let’s make travel dates for the XXX [insert league] finals” line…of course, this is dripping with sarcasm and a poke at the Celts euphoria since the Celts are but five games into the season.

Shaughnessy slams the provision in Schilling’s contract that gives him a $1 million bonus if he gets a single Cy Young vote. He claims that it will be easy for there to be collusion between Schilling and any particular sportswriter. He concludes that the BBWA should give up the vote because of the “blatant conflict” with clauses such as this. I guess this is to protect the sanctity of the sportswriting fraternity? Frankly, I don’t get the logic here. What is the conflict? It’s not like Schilling is going to share the money with the sportswriter, is he? That is not going to happen. If anything, I can see a NY based writer giving Schiling a vote to drive up the Sox payroll. If so, I think that would be pretty clever. In which case, I think economic market forces takes care of this issue – the Sox will realize the foolishness of such a clause and would not include it in future contracts. Problem solved.

So, while Shank gets on his high horse about “blatant conflicts”, he happily shills for a book by fellow Globe writer Neil Swidey-- a “tome” about Charlestown High School basketball. Hmmm, is there a conflict here Shank? You guys sharing royalties? Maybe it’s time for sportswriters to give up using their columns to push the work of fellow sportswriters? You are such a hypocrite.

More on conflicts, Shank rails against the fact that George Mitchell is heading the steroids probe while still being on the board of the Red Sox. This is a fair criticism except for the timing. Shank, Mitchell has been doing this probe for what, over a year now? And you are just now making this connection? Why are you just mentioning this now? My guess is that Shank is simply setting himself up for when the report comes out in January…if there are no Red Sox named, he can say “See I told you so.”

There are a few more annoyances in this disgraceful column. Read for yourself if you can stand it.


Dave M said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I have a question regarding the Quarterly Picking up the pieces comment ... quarterly meaning at least 1 for every 4 weeks? Because they occur more frequently then 1 every 4 months!

dbvader said...

He mentions the Sen. Mitchell conflict because it was mentioned on sports radio recently. The guy is a fraud.

The Walpole Field Hockey team is named "The Porkers"? I had to double check that.

Dave M said...

Anon 1047....My intent was that it seems to be once every three months...and I think you right in that they are more common than that.

In fact, this is picked up pieces column #5 for 2007 but the last one that I could find was Jul 12th so it has been awhile. He had 8 such columns in 2006.

Dave M said...

Another point from today...Not sure what his point here is but he makes the comment

"When ESPN The Magazine produced its first issue in 1998, four pro athletes graced the cover billed as "NEXT." The four? Alex Rodriguez, Kobe Bryant, Eric Lindros, and Kordell Stewart. Lindros retired last week. Quietly. And Stewart is long gone and hard to find."

Is he criticizing ESPN? Dont know what his idiotic point is.

We can always go to past articles and pick apart nuggets like this. In fact, why dont we? From his May 9th picked up pieces column, Dan writes:

"Didn't we all like Alex Gonzalez and Mark Loretta a whole lot more than Julio Lugo and Dustin Pedroia? The keystone change at Fenway has done wonders for the career of Alex Cora."

What an idiot. DBVader had Pedroia pegged right from the start of the season but the idiot Shank couldnt let Pedroia (Poster Boy for the Minions) alone. I should not be surprised that Shank makes no mention of the fact that poster boy played the last two months with a broken wrist. This would have been nice...."Picked up pieces while also picking up crumbled pieces of Dustin Pedroia's hamate bone"

shamrock1957 said...

It will be tough for any single sportswriter to 'collude' with Schilling ("Hey! vote for me and I'll give you $200,000 of the $1 million I get!") because he will only get one vote. And that one vote will stick out more than Rudolph's red nose does. That lone writer would be toast...absolutely toast...for being a Shill for Schilling. Don't get me wrong: I love Schilling because of his blog and because he angers people like Shaughnessy since Curt can reach the masses without having to 'go through' a columnist to get his story told. But Schilling has no chance of getting that single Cy Young vote because that single vote is the only one he'd get. And the spotlight would fry any plebe baseball writer foolish enough to cast a vote Schilling's way because it would be clear and obvious payola.

Dave M said...

Shamrock--I agree with you - CHBs outrage is misplaced

ObjectiveBruce said...

How incredibly naive.

No, Schilling isn't going to share his million dollar bonus with a sportswriter who throws him a vote. But with a million on the table, can it be said that Schilling won't be friendly toward a sportswriter who could give him a vote? Doesn't giving a sportswriter the opportunity to single-handedly increase someone's income by a million dollars also give that sports writer greater access and give the player an incentive for giving information to that writer -- and not just information about the team but, oh say maybe information about what happened ina close-door clubhouse meeting?

The conflict of interest could not be more clear. It is truly naive if you can't see the difference between placing a reporter in a position where he can make someone that he covers a million dollars richer and praising a book by a colleague.

Oh, and notes columns have been a staple of sports pages forever. But that small fact disrupts your silly agenda.

mike_b1 said...

Schilling's been friendly with good sportswriters for years.

Dave M said...


You continue to amaze....

Let's see -

1) Either Shaughnessy doesn't trust his fellow sportswriters thinking that they would fall prey to such a tit for tat exchange

2) or this is a tacit acknowledgement that sportswriters are simply pawns for players/management

Either case doesnt speak highly of the profession, does it?

As for Shank shilling for his co-writer...conceptually, I dont see the difference. It has become a widespread practice for one writer to push the work of another. What if the particular work is crap and doesnt deserve the mention? What if there is some behind the scenes exchange - whether it be as blatant as royalty exchange or something less obvious but nonetheless insidious like what you describe between the writer and Schilling?

Regardles, Shamrock is right....a single vote will stick out like a sore thumb--"market forces" will take care of the issue--the writer would be outed and would look bad.

But again does Shank really have such a lack of faith in his fellow sportswriters?

My guess is that you will ignore this comment like the dozens of others that call out your mistakes and/or your faulty line of reasoning.

dbvader said...


I am still waiting for your statement admitting your error. I know how much you believe in accountability.