Saturday, January 31, 2009

Northeastern and the Beanpot

(I have had a bad track record lately--keep missing these Dan columns. My regrets)

Dan's piece yesterday focused on the Northeastern hockey team and how they can top off a stellar season by winning the Beanpot. He discusses how Northeastern is the team on the local scene that gets no respect and even though they are ranked #4 in the country this season, they would dearly love a Beanpot win to answer any lingering questions of how far they have come aand how good they are.

The one strange bit comes in the first paragraph...Shaughnessy compares Northeastern to Ringo Starr (ok - fair enough - but I think Shaughnessy has used that more than once and it is a little dated now) and then to Teddy Roosevelt on Rushmore (since all the other guys have monuments). Hey Dan, Teddy has his own island in DC ( and he is featured in some great recent movies (Night At the Museum and its upcoming sequel). Not too bad for ole Teddy :)

It's a solid piece but anything would be better than the Brady crap from the other day (For those people who said the Brady piece was satire, can you fill me in on what actually Shaughnessy was satirizing?)

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Dan has a meaningless column that offers nothing except the silliest notions of sports talk radio callers.

I guess when you are as bankrupt of ideas as Shank is, anything will do.

Monday, January 26, 2009

A Look at Ray Allen

Dan takes the occasion of a Celtics' blowout to focus on Ray Allen, who scored 23 yesterday, 20 by halftime.

Dan starts with an interesting anecdote from Ray Allen's childhood and goes on to describe the game while discussing Ray Allen's improved season.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Varitek and Other Things

Totally missed this piece...thanks DBVader for mentioning it. Shaughnessy writes about Jason Varitek: Varitek needs a job; the Sox need a catcher and therefore they need to work this out. (Despite the bad blood with Boras). Actually, a decent piece though I take issue with this sentence:

Reward him for past contributions. Put together a deal that makes it look like something less than capitulation.

The whole "reward him" thing...first, Varitek has been paid handsomely enough already, has he not? Second, this is coming from Shaughnessy who has bitched and moaned about Schiling's contract from last year...a contract which I personally think had a "reward him for past contributions" aspect to it.

Totally different topic. I am reading the book "Juicing the Game" by Howard Bryant. He references a 1990's CHB special in which Shaughnessy declared that there was no relationship between steroids/performance enhancing drug use and a baseball player's performance. Shaughnessy was writing just after McGwire got caught by a reporter for having andro in his locker. Shaughnessy wrote

It's no wonder players loathe the media. In McGwire's case, it is misleading to write that he's using a performance enhancing drug. He's a baseball player, not an Olympic sprinter. There's nothing sold at drugstores that would help any of us hit a home run in the big leagues (unless that store has a book on hitting written by Ted Williams.) Facing Randy Johnson and hitting a ball over the fence requires bravery, timing, hand-eye coordination, reflexes, leverage, and strength. Most of all, it requires practice."

Sure, I admit it's very easy for me to criticize Shaughnessy with 20/20 hindsight. But I still would argue that this was lazy and shallow analysis, which is all too typical of Shank

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Picking Up Sides Has Never Been So Difficult

So, who are you pulling for?

Dan Shaughnessy in all his laziness?

Or the new, Curt Schilling-infused WEEI?

I cannot root for either, unfortunately.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Monday, January 19, 2009

Dan Back to His Roots

In a head scratcher, The Globe sent Dan Shaughnessy to Phoenix to cover the NFC Championship game. Christopher Gasper busted his hump all season and gets to read Dan. Life is unfair.

And the game piece sucks. Dan uses the first two-hundred words of the article to give the history of the Cardinals and tweak Patriots fans. It took only fifty words before Dan mentioned the Super Bowl XLII.

But what about the notes column, you ask. It sucked too. Unless you consider this nugget as something that adds something to your enjoyment and understanding of football:
Donovan McNabb had an easy commute after the game. McNabb owns a home in Phoenix

And Dan even manages another Super Bowl XLII mention.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Isn't It Ironic?

I loathe Dan Shaughnessy. Okay, he represents the face of Boston Red Sox for the rest of America. He "invented" the Curse of the Bambino. He is a local kid who grew up in Mass and went to Holy Cross and has labored for the Boston Globe for more than 20 years. Still, I can't forgive him for the drivel he writes day in and day out for the Boston Globe...It is a disgrace.

How ironic it is that once again Shaughnessy (the poster child for "mailing it in") attempts to take the higher ground as he rips the Arizona Cardinals for their performance against the Patriots in December? And how ironic it is that Shaughnessy is rewarded with a trip to a warm climate when his company is a sinking ship? (Exactly why did he need to be in Arizona to write this particular piece?)

As a disclaimer, I thought Arizona's performance against the Patriots was a joke as well...but to use that as a springboard for an all-out attack like this is over-the-top. The Cardinals did what they had to do to get the playoffs. If they were such a joke, they would not be in the NFC Championship game - more power to them.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

You Knew It Was Coming

Dan's view on Jim Rice and the counterarguments have been well hashed out on this site and others. Yesterday was a day for Dan to celebrate. And he managed a good column, capturing some of the factors at work and giving a little bit of color to Rice's career.

But he couldn't resist this one shot:
there was a backlash among new-age, basement-dwelling number crunchers who found flaws in Rice's résumé (always borderline by Cooperstown's lofty standards).

Two points:
1) If Rice's case for the Hall is borderline, then criticism of his career is legitimate, not the result of misguided stats geeks.

2) Rob Neyer doesn't need me to defend him, but I have to say this: Rob watches more baseball in a season than Dan has in the last 10 years. Rob has forgotten more baseball history than Dan remembers. To dismiss him out of hand is insulting and a sign of Dan's blissful ignorance of all things new.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Real Simple

Dan's Celtics column in three easy steps:

1) Things are going bad - insert clever remarks about losing to the Lakers, Knicks, and Bobcats.

2) There are many theories as to why things are going bad - insert a bunch of quotations; list the many theories, never offer a solid opinion on any of them.

3) Things will get better - Don't try to explain, just simply conclude the Celtics will do better:
He means it. Fans and media might be a tad nervous, but the guys in the locker room are not worried. They've got a ton of experience and they've got a ring and they know how to fight through the NBA's midwinter blues.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Ignorance Fuels Indignation

Dan starts today's column with a question:
Precisely when did a contract become a one-way deal?

And the answer is pretty simple. When it's an employment contract. Because of that whole no slavery or involuntary servitude thing in the United States, people cannot be forced to work under a contract if they don't want to. Yet the employer is always on the hook for the money if it wants to get rid of an employee under contract without just cause. Them's the breaks.

It's obvious who the focus of the column is going to be, but Dan cannot get to things before getting a few lashes in on Manny Ramirez and Curt Schilling, the latter who had the gall to get injured after signing a contract.

Dan goes on to spout off, blithely ignorant of both the facts and the law. Coaches skip out on contracts all the time. When a head coach opening comes around they cannot wait until the end of their contract to take it because someone else will. It's the nature of the system. And do you know what? Everybody knows it; the players, the coaches, the athletic directors.

And do you know what else? A smart AD can do something about it. When Rich Rodriguez left West Virginia for Michigan, he had to pay WVU something like $4 million to break his contract. That's what smart people do, they negotiate the terms of the contract in order to protect themselves. Dumb people rely on a handshake and looking somebody in the eye

Dan has all the other BC talking points that the media has picked up: "But Jags promised" (Look up the parol evidence rule, Dan); "he has no shot at the job"; and "it was more about not telling DeFilippo." These scattershot arguments belie their validity.

Finally, who cares? It's BC and the coach took decent teams to the conference championship in a weak league and promptly got smoked.