Sunday, February 22, 2009

More on Shaughnessy's Plagiarism

I wanted to follow-up on my morning's post about Shaughnessy's self-plagiarism.  I think it is bad and I think it is worthy of his suspension.   I was able to find 8 items in today's column that were also pretty much written up in the same way in his book Spring Training co-written with Grossfeld.

Here are the quotes from today's column:

"Spring training is where Ted Williams and Carl Yastrzemski played a steel-cage tennis match at the Winter Haven Ramada Inn in 1979."

"Spring training is where I saw a Montreal left fielder crash into a fence in Winter Haven chasing a fly ball. Back in 1976. The kid was out cold for a spell. Fans applauded when he finally got to his feet. He wound up spending most of his career behind the plate. Gary Carter. Hall of Famer."

"Spring training is where Twins owner Calvin Griffith stood on the balcony of his Orlando condo and stared blankly into a sky filled with wreckage from the Challenger spacecraft in 1986"

"It's where the local newspaper published the titles of overdue videos (all pornos) rented by Boyd. The Maniacal Chuck Waseleski dubbed it "the Can's Film Festival."

"Spring training is where … Bill Clinton spoke with Wade Boggs outside the visitor's dugout in Kissimmee in 1992."

"It's where Boggs announced, "I'm the white Irving Fryar," after tumbling out of the family jeep when his wife wheeled out of Christy's Restaurant in Winter Haven in 1992."

"Spring training is where a 5-foot-8-inch Orioles catcher named Dave Criscione caught three foul pops in a single inning against the Braves in West Palm Beach in 1978. Anybody ever see that, at any level? Criscione played only seven big league games."

"It's where Bill Lee told baseball writers of the Sox' acquisition of Dennis Eckersley in a six-player blockbuster in 1978, screaming, "Send lawyers, guns, and money, the [expletive] has hit the fan!" Eck wound up in Cooperstown."

Now from his 2003, Spring Training book

”It’s where Ted Williams and Carl Yastrzemski played tennis against each other at a Winter Haven Ramada Inn in 1979.”

"I remember sitting with young Globe Scribe Peter Gammons watching a young Montreal outfielder named Gary Carter slam into a fence in Winter Haven"

"It’s where Calvin Griffith stood on the balcony of his Orlando condo and stared blankly into the sky at the wreckage of the Challenger spacecraft"

"Spring training is where silly stories can become big news.  In the spring of 1987, the Winter Haven police came into the Red Sox clubhouse to inform pitcher Oil Can Boyd of some video rentals that were overdue.  Naturally, the local newspaper unearthed Oil Can’s play list and the titles were predictably ribald…Western Massachusetts statistical wizard Chuck Waseleski dubbed the event “the Can’s Film Festival”"

"It’s where Bill Clinton spoke with Wade Boggs outside he dugout at the Astros complex in Kissimmee Florida during the early stages of the 1992 campaign."

"In 1992, Boston’s final spring training in Winter Haven, Boggs and his wife Debbie dined at Christy’s and somehow Wade fell from the family jeep when Debbied wheeled out of the parking lot.  Wade wasn’t seriously hurt but the back wheel of the jeep ran over his elbow; the next day the batting champ showed off scars from the steel-belted radial and announced, "I'm the white Irving Fryar!"

"I remember one night when we marveled at the exploits of an Oriole catcher in West Palm Beach earlier that day.  Dave Croscione was a backup backstop who stood 5 foot 8 and played only seven games in his major league career.  But against the Braves on that particular March afternoon, he’d caught three pop ups in a single inning"

"This was the same area where the Boston scribes gathered in the spring of 1978 waiting to learn if the Sox had pulled off a trade for young Cleveland ace Dennis Eckersley.  When word of a six-player megadeal was leaked to the dugout, Bill Lee ran toward the scribes in the right field pen and exclaimed “Send lawyers, guns and money.  The shit has hit the fan.”


Bill Lee's last quote could apply to Dan Shaughnessy and his current situation.

Hope I am not the only one who believes this is a serious breach of journalistic integrity?


Anonymous said...

I'm with ya....mark me down for 1 "suspend the Shank" vote!...better yet they should fire his lazy butt altogether

Little Ricky said...

in a way you can't blame Shank.......he probably figured NOBODY read his book so he would get away with this shameful act. The Shank's legacy is now tainted and his chances for induction into the Sportswriters hall of Fame are now gone......TAINTED SHANK!

Roger Bournival said...

There are other ways for a newspaper to stop spending money besides suspending its writers:

Philadelphia Newspapers L.L.C., which owns The Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News, and, filed for bankruptcy protection yesterday in a bid to restructure its $390 million in debt load.

The company, bought by a group of Philadelphia-area investors for $562 million in 2006, said the voluntary Chapter 11 filing would not interrupt its daily operations.

"This restructuring is focused solely on our debt, not our operations," chief executive officer Brian P. Tierney, who led the group that provided about $150 million of the purchase price three years ago, said in a news release.

"Our operations are sound and profitable," said Tierney, referring to operating profits before interest and certain other costs.

Anonymous said...

Look, I hate Shank as much as anyone. But rehashing stuff HE previously wrote in a book years ago in a current column is not plagiarism. Plagiarism is using the words of another as ones own without crediting the source.

What Shank did is Lazy and injustice to his employers and readers who expect fresh & insightful material. But it isn't plagiarism and in a vacuum is not suspension worthy.

On the other hand, if I were his employer and he continued to produce rehashed stuff like this, continued using his column as a weapon in his personal vendettas and continued his frequent submissions of the worthless 'picking up the pieces' columns, then I would consider firing him.

dbvader said...

Dave M is aware that is not plagiarism. The original post contained the term "Self Plagiarist", which Dave knows is an logically absurd term but uses to denote the practice of reusing you own writings almost word for word.

Anonymous said...

Thanks DB...self-plagiarism is an interesting beast and logically inconsistent on one level. Yet, I think it represents a serious breach between reader and journalist. When I read a column, I expect that it is fresh/new material unless I am told otherwise. I was not told otherwise here. At best, it's extreme laziness (but what else is new with CHB); at worst, it's a significant breach of trust with the reader (which is also logically inconsistent because SHank does not have my trust but this episode does formalize my distrust and contempt for him)

Dave M

JJS37 said...

I don't think you can plagiarize yourself. I can't stand this guy. He shouldn't have a job. He's lazy, he has mental issues with athletes because he couldn't be one, and he's lazy (yeah, I said it twice).

But you can't plagiarize yourself. You can rehash shit you wrote. (Case in point: Jon Bon Jovi was in the movie "Young Guns II" and wanted to write the theme music for it. He was going to do "Wanted, Dead or Alive" but thought he already did it, so he did "Blaze of Glory." Basically the same song. When asked about it, he said, "Yeah, might as well copy from yourself.")

I don't think the issue of plagiarism is what's wrong with the article. I think it's the fact that he could have done this from his house instead of Florida that's the problem. I think that there's 10,00 issues in spring training, and he doesn't mention any of them, instead taking his little self-walk down Memory Lane.

Honestly, who effing cares? Gary Carter crashed into a wall 30 years ago and Wade Boggs fell out of a pick-up. Super.

Here's what I need to know: Who the hell is playing Short this year? How come the Sox haven't thought about Orlando Cabrera who is still out there? Didn't he do a pretty good job last time around? How about Brad Penny? Which one of him are we getting? What's up with Mike Timlin? Is he even on the roster? Who's replacing him? Is Delcarmen going to have a breakout year? What about Saito? Is anyone going to say the name "Jason Bay," ever? I mean, he's only the starting LF and it seemed like he got a hit and drove in a run in like every single game he played in last year after the trade.

And on and on. There's a thousand subjects and a thousand questions and a thousand stories.

But hey, let's talk about 1992 Spring Training and Bill Clinton's conversation with Wade Boggs! Yeah! What did they talk about? Being invisible? How to cheat on your wife? Cigars?

God. Who cares?

JJS37 said...

On the other hand, I am looking forward for some updates on "The 3-2 Kid." How's he doing?

dbvader said...

How come the Sox haven't thought about Orlando Cabrera who is still out there? Didn't he do a pretty good job last time around?

Because the Red Sox already have two SS. Because Cabrera is 34 years old and not very good offensively.

JJS37 said...

"Because the Red Sox already have two SS. Because Cabrera is 34 years old and not very good offensively."

Vader: I hate to tell you this, but Jed Lowrie hit .258 with 2 HR and 46 RBI and 1 SB and 34 runs scored last year.

Julio Lugo hit .268 with 1 homer and 22 RBI with 12 SB and 27 runs scored last year.

Orlando Caberera hit .281 with 8 HR and 57 RBI and stole 19 bases and scored 93 runs. And he hit .301 the previous year with 81 RBI.

This is a guy who had more homers, runs scored, stolen bases, and is a better fielder than both Lowrie AND Lugo.

And I don't think that being 34 is a problem considering he played 161 games last year and 151 the year before that.

Plus, didn't they sign Smoltz for $5 mil for this year so he can pitch in like 15 games?

You can trade Lugo (teams have been interested, you just eat the contract), keep Lowrie as you infield utility guy.

So again, why aren't they thinking about Cabrera?

dbvader said...

Assuming your stats are accurate measures, a marginal upgrade at SS in not worth what it would cost to get Cabrera.

Further, your stats are BS. First, look at their projections. Lowrie will do better because he is young and improving while Orlando is 34.

Second, look at OBP and not silly stats like RBI and RS. Lowrie and Lugo had better OBP's than Cabrera. Lowrie outslugged Cabrera.

Finally, Lowrie had an injury last year. He will hit better. There is nothing to justify the Red Sox picking up Cabrera.