Thursday, January 30, 2014


"In my view, every player has a right to remain silent. ... It’s not the guys who don’t talk that bother me."

So says The CHB today, maintaining a Lou Gehrig-like streak of consecutive columns of total BS.

Not every word of today's "effort" is false, of course. For instance, Shank writes, "Manny Ramirez exercised that right [to ignore the press] for long stretches and we didn’t think any less of him for it."

This is actually true. Shaughnessy hated Manny because he was 1) Hispanic, 2) paid $20 million a year, 3) beloved by fans no matter what he did, and 4) Hispanic. Whether he spoke with the press was moot.

He doesn't mention Nomar Garciaparra today (although he did yesterday) but Nomar would be another one. As The CHB wrote a few years ago, "What a fraud. Nobody hated the media more with less cause than our guy Nomie." Yep, Nomar didn't talk much to the media either. He was completely articulate about why, however, noting that while he recognized the press had a job to do, that making their job easy wasn't his job." But again, Nomar was 1) Hispanic, 2) paid $15 million a year, 3) beloved by fans no matter what he did, and 4) Hispanic.

This is the best part: Four grafs from the end of the column, this little bit gets thrown in, sans transitions or explanation as to its relevance: "Lynch is 5 feet 11 inches, weighs 215 pounds, grew up in Oakland and went to California. His mom’s name is Delisa Lynch and he has a brother named Davonte. A couple of his cousins played professional football. He played three-plus seasons with the Buffalo Bills and has been with Seattle since the 2010 season. He rushed for 1,257 yards this year and scored 14 touchdowns."

Thanks, Dan. Without you, I might never had known Marshawn's mother's name is Delisa. Delisa!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Out of Place

Maybe you've heard Bill Belichick and the Patriots are not playing in the Super Bowl this weekend.

If so, would you please inform The CHB. Because I don't think he knows.

Else, why would he ask Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker, "Why does Bill hate you?"  (Appropriately, Welker replied by saying that's a question for his former coach.)

Then Shank rips on Randy Moss ("one of those wildly talented ballplayers who hated and disrespected the media during his playing career, then joined the media as soon as the paychecks stop coming"), all the while not fully realizing that the ex player was far more able to ask relevant questions (and extract relevant answers) from Welker.

Being shown up by Moss, no one's definition of Einstein, would be enough to send most self-respecting humans sportswriters back to their caves.

Not Shaughnessy. He tries once more to divine Welker's thoughts: "He’s also driven to win a Super Bowl. For himself. And to stick it in Bill’s face one more time."

Does anyone really think, on the even of the biggest game in American sports, Welker is giving his former coach a second thought?

Of course not. But even at the Super Bowl, The CHB has to try to stir up trouble.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Cashed Out

Even though he hasn't given The CHB his walking papers -- yet -- I have to give John Henry credit: Shaughnessy is actually working for a living, for a change.

Yet while the effort is there, the output, well, not so much.

His second column in two days (!) is a tired attempt to paint David Ortiz as whiny and greedy. Oh sure, Big Papi wants a new deal. (Who doesn't?) But Papi is the one guy who is so revered in Boston, that minority or no, The CHB just can't outright take the knife to him like he wants to.

Still, he calls a player who is coming off one of the most remarkable seasons in baseball history, one in which he carried to a World Series crown a Red Sox team predicted by none other than The CHB to finish last, and who in adhering to the long-standing practice of athletes in the final year of their contract asks for a new deal, "tone-deaf, selfish, and offensive."

And he trots out perhaps the weakest of the straw man arguments, comparing Ortiz's situation to that of Curt Schilling's following the 2007 season: "After Curt Schilling staggered through the 2007 playoffs, winning on smarts and guile, someone thought it would be a good idea to bring him back for $8 million in 2008. Schilling never threw another pitch in the big leagues."

As if it makes any sense to compare a pitcher whom (just about) everyone knew needed arm surgery to a hitter coming off a 30 homer season in which he also hit .309. 

But the Sox would be bidding against themselves, whines The CHB. "National League teams won’t hire him and the Red Sox are just about the only team still paying big bucks to a full-time DH."

Well, let's see: Big Papi was 44th in all of baseball last year in wins above replacement (WAR). That's out of 955 batters who appeared in a major league game during the 2013 Championship season. Ortiz then hit a clutch grand slam home run to turn around the Tigers in the ALCS, and clobbered .688 to finish off the Cardinals. Maybe, just maybe, the Red Sox know something all those other teams don't.

"The Sox know what it’s like to have dead money on the books," writes The CHB. 

Yes, and so does John Henry, every time he picks up the Boston Globe Sports section. 

The Rem Dawg Returns

Jerry Remy, on a self-imposed television exile since the August 2013 indictment of his son Jared on murder charges, will return to NESN this year to broadcast Red Sox games.
In an emotional and unconventional half-hour session in a NESN boardroom Monday, Jerry Remy met with a small group of reporters and told us he has decided to come back for a 27th season as color commentator on Red Sox telecasts.

The hardest part was . . .

All of it.

Every word. Every pause. Every question. Every answer. Every attempt to hold back tears. All of it was hard. None of it was easy. Nothing will ever be easy again for Jerry Remy or any of the families devastated by the murder of Jennifer Martel.

“Call me a bad father if you want,’’ Remy said softly when asked about the series of crimes and reports that have been a plague on his house. “But I’ll be damned if my wife is not a good parent.’’

You know the tragic story. Remy, 61, was cruising through his 26th season in the broadcast booth last August when his son Jared was arrested and charged with the murder of Martel, the 27-year-old woman who was the mother of Jared Remy’s then-4-year-old daughter. A troubled man with a lengthy criminal record, Jared Remy is incarcerated awaiting trial, and multiple families are forever damaged.
The column reads as sympathetic towards Jerry Remy, a notable change from Shank's usual M.O. of hyperbolic criticism, passing of judgment and running athletes out of town. In fact, I'll add that Shank's restraint here is remarkable. At least he's consistent in this particular situation.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Peace And Quiet

Now that Shank doesn't have the Patriots to kick around anymore, he turns his attention to the 2014 Red Sox, his column possibly motivated by the recent free agent signings by the New York Yankees.
Listen . . .

Hear that sound of silence? The big fat nothing?

This is the sound of the Red Sox offseason of 2013-14. Neil Diamond no doubt would call it “a beautiful noise.’’
Nope, not dating ourselves here!
The Red Sox are the reigning world champs and everything is just swell in the Nation. The Sox can do no wrong. They can lose their starting center fielder, shortstop, and catcher and hear nothing but applause from the cheap (and expensive) seats. The Boston Strong, worst-to-first campaign of 2013 has made the Sox almost bulletproof from question and criticism.
So, let's devote a column to the relative inaction of the Red Sox' offseason.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Familiar With The Subject Matter

This is the second chapter from yesterday's column, the 2013-2014 New England Patriot's epitaph.
Bill Belichick obviously hates Wes Welker

DENVER — A day later, some clarity.

We know for sure now that Bill Belichick hates Wes Welker with the power of 1,000 suns. Belichick blames Welker for dropping a pass that cost him a Super Bowl ring two years ago.
Does anyone recall Bill Belichick actually saying anything explicit about this? I sure don't recall it, and a quick check of the archives don't mention anything specifically about that game and it's aftermath.
But then the game started, and it was obvious. Tom Brady had no one to throw the ball to. Amendola, the man who replaced Welker, was targeted only once and dropped the throw, a no-show performance that would put the Celtics’ Jeff Green to shame. Meanwhile, Welker — Peyton Manning’s fourth option in the Broncos’ pinball offense — caught four passes for 38 yards.

Welker also took Aqib Talib out of the game with a pick-play block.

And now Belichick hates him more than ever.
This, from a columnist that has criticized and run out of town more athletes than I have time to write about.
Belichick has been unusually contrite these last couple of days. Sunday he talked of “mistakes, especially by me,’’ and Monday he said, “Nobody makes more mistakes around here than I do.’’

Everyone forgives you, Bill. You took this team much further than it deserved to go. But some of the mistakes were made last spring and summer. And letting Welker go was one of those mistakes.

He’s going to the Super Bowl. And the Patriots are picking up pieces of their broken luck. Again.
You can almost picture Shank with a shit-eating grin when he's writing this column, can't you?

Monday, January 20, 2014

It's Over, Patriots

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the column Shank has been dying to write for the better part of a decade.
Championship days are all over for the Patriots

DENVER — So there. In the end, it was about talent and merit, instead of myth and legacy. It turns out that an appearance in the Super Bowl is not an entitlement.

In the end, the overachieving, house-of-cards Patriots were simply not good enough to go to the Meadowlands for Super Bowl XLVIII. Not even close. The amazing part is that a lot of folks actually believed this team was going back to the big game.
Shank writes a pro-forma paragraph here and sentence there 'congratulating' the Patriots for what they've done this season, then devotes the rest of the column shedding crocodile tears and mounting nearly every criticism possible, as the Patriot's championship years are now long behind them.

It's worth noting the effort that Shank seems to put into epitaph columns such as this one. Hell, he probably had half of it written before kickoff.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Wilt! Get It?

Today's column by Shank looks at Peyton Manning and his performances in playoff games, and speculates on Manning's performance on Sunday against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.
Peyton Manning can’t afford to wilt now

Patriots fans think the Patriots are going to win Sunday because they are confident Tom Brady will play better than Peyton Manning in any big game.

Manning will choke.

That’s the book.

A case can be made that, excluding Super Bowls, this AFC Championship is the biggest, grandest, most-hyped NFL contest of the last 50 years. It’s the 15th playing of the NFL’s 1812 Overture. Bill Belichick has a chance to tie Tom Landry as the winningest playoff coach in NFL history. Brady is already the winningest quarterback in postseason history (18 victories as a starter), and with one more championship, he can join Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw in the exclusive four-ring club.
Fair enough. Shank, however, overstates a few facts to support his column.
It’s amazing. Manning has morphed into Wilt Chamberlain. Despite all the awards (Sports Illustrated’s Sportsman of the Year in 2013) and commercials, he is disrespected on a par with no athlete this side of Alex Rodriguez.
Except that this statement isn't true with Manning's peers:
As part of ESPN's NFL Nation Confidential survey of more than 320 players, the questions were asked, "If you had to start a team with one player, whom would it be?" and "Which player do you respect the most?"

And Manning was the top choice for both.

Manning was the leading vote-getter as first pick to start a team, with 62 votes (19 percent). Andrew Luck, who replaced Manning in Indianapolis, received 56 votes, and Tom Brady was third with 41 votes.
More from Shank:
Oh, and you know the rest of it. Imagine how great Tom Brady would be if he’d had Manning’s receivers through the years. Tom never had Reggie Wayne or Marvin Harrison.
Except that Tom had, over the years (among others) Troy Brown, Wes Welker, Randy Moss, Gronk and Aaron Hernandez. Not exactly third-tier receivers and tight ends.
Manning never had the defenses that Brady had in New England.
I don't recall the Colts having bad defenses, and when you throw in names like Dwight Freeney and Bob Sanders, you could say that the Colts had pretty good defenses. With Denver, their defense has improved during the year and played well against San Diego last week.

You almost get the sense that Shank's backtracking a bit from Wednesday's column.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Finger On The Pulse

Hayden Bird of Streetwise Media is all over Shank's schtick:
Every Time I Read Dan Shaughnessy, I Die a Little Inside

Calm down people, and ignore the troll. He plays a very cynical game with New England sports fans, and to his Machiavellian credit, he usually wins. Whether it's waxing poetic about the Red Sox being sure to suck this year, or conjuring David Ortiz PED rumors out of thin air, he types words without ever actually saying anything himself. His only intention, which he clings to desperately, is to upset and anger the largest number of local fans possible. For this reason, I die a little inside every time I read him.

I can't quite tell if it's his obviously cynical strategy to troll the hell out of New England fans just to get attention, or simply the fact that he genuinely doesn't care if he's actually right about anything. Like some curly-haired, red-cheeked Voldemort, he just doesn't seem to have a soul.
I can't speak for Hayden here, but I don't die myself one little bit when I read Shank's columns; he's not worth it.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Stirring The Pot Or Telling The Truth?

Shank looks ahead to Sunday's AFC Championship game between the Patriots and the Broncos, and doesn't like what he sees:
The Broncos are going to beat the Patriots Sunday.

Sorry, that’s just the way I see it. I am not rooting for the Broncos. I am not into Satanic worship. Please do not kill my whole family. I am often wrong (remember the 2013 Red Sox, destined for last place?) and hopefully for New England fans, I will be wrong again.
So the Patriots have that going for them!
The Patriots have proven folks wrong time and again. Overcoming doubters is the foundation of the Patriot franchise.

Doubting the Patriots this weekend is hardly a daring position. They are significant underdogs in Vegas.
Would you call a five point underdog 'significant'? Ten points or more, yes, but not five.
Most of the national TV panel guys will pick against New England.
How did that last big game prediction work out for them?
Some of the handicapping local car dealers will pick the Broncos. There might even be a footy-pajama fanboy or two with doubts about the Patriots’ ability to beat Peyton Manning.
For what it's worth, Tom Brady is 10-4 in head-to-head matchups with Peyton Manning. If Shank thinks the Patriots are going to lose, that's all I need to take the Patriots.

Sunday, January 12, 2014


Nothing says mailed-in column quite like a paint-by numbers game recap of the Patriots 43-22 win over the Colts, a few quotes from Brady & Belichick, and plenty of Shankisms.

Definitely a column worth not reading.

Saturday, January 11, 2014


Is it possible to take the day off on the same day you write a column?

It is if your name is Shank and you tell the fanboy masses how awesome the New England Patriots are on Saturday nights. Shank does the heavy lifting for you and notes their record is 5 - 0 on those nights, then tells you about each of those games.

That's it. The entire column is summed up in those two sentences. Worth every penny we're paying for...

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Stupid Sanctimonious Prick

That could sum up Shank's entire career at the John Henry Boston Globe, but this piece of crap column has plenty of contradictions and a dash of holier than thou attitude.
How do we change Hall of Fame process?

The Hall of Fame vote has been announced. Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and Frank Thomas will be enshrined in Cooperstown this summer.

Some takeaways:
Local fanboy showing a provincial attitude? Check:
■ Big congrats to Glavine, a Billerica guy who had to choose between hockey and baseball. It will be a long time (probably never) before we see another young man from the Merrimack Valley grow up to win 300 games in the major leagues.
Submit a ballot of your own that has plenty of logical contradictions, then have the nerve to complain about other ballots? Check:
■ Sixteen of 571 voters did not vote for Maddux. These are 16 people who will not concede that Friday traditionally follows Thursday. They will dispute that penicillin was a good discovery for civilization. You know the thinking: two wrongs make a right. “Willie Mays wasn’t unanimous? I’ll be damned if I vote for Greg Maddux on the first ballot.”
But he'll sleep better knowing he's not the sole voter responsible for this omission:
■ Craig Biggio missed by two votes. He was named on 74.8 percent of the ballots. Thank God he missed by two votes, and not one. I did not vote for Biggio and it would have been tough to sleep at night knowing a single non-vote kept a guy out of Cooperstown.
Viewed that way, Shank, you bear half the 'responsibility' for Biggio not making the Hall of Fame. I do hope you manage to sleep comfortably until he's elected into the Hall.

Actually, no I don't...
■ Jack Morris is gone from the ballot. Morris was the poster child for old-school voters. He’s a 1980s star who had a high ERA (3.90) but still won 254 games, pitched 175 complete games, and was a World Series MVP. He is hereby turned over to the Veterans Committee. This makes the Stat Pack very happy.
At least part of Shank will sleep well at night knowing that, despite his best efforts, Jack Morris will eventually make it in, just not this year. And in the end, getting a good night's sleep is what really matters, isn't it? Nitey-nite, don't let the bedbugs bite!

Rich In Irony Department:
■ The vitriol in the Hall of Fame debate is officially off the charts. It’s way past, “You’re fat, you’re ugly.’’ Today the emboldened fanboys want votes stripped from those who disagree with Basement Nation. It’s not enough to disagree. It’s no longer, “I like Morris, you like Mussina.” It’s, “Vote the way I vote, or please die.’’ Truly an uncivil climate.
The poster child for Boston's intemperate sportswriters and columnists, everyone!
■ Sanctimonious? Out of touch? “Get Off My Lawn!’’ Thy name is BBWAA. No group is more easily ridiculed. That said, it would be nice if the legion of critics would come forward with solutions.

What is the answer to this flawed voting process?
According to Shank, it is not this guy:
■ The wildly talented Dan Le Batard of ESPN turns out to be the voter who chose to mock the system by turning over his vote to a website that exists solely for the purpose of embarrassing people.
Embarrassing people? One wonders if Shank is blissfully not self-aware of that concept or simply doesn't give a rat's ass. I vote for the latter...
A lot of hard-working men and women have been involved in this process for 75 years, and like the rest of us, Le Batard was fortunate to be included in the process.

Effecting change from within is difficult. Anonymous betrayal and ridicule is easy. A stand-up guy would have recused himself.
If you were Shank, who has apparently given this subject some level of thought as noted above, you'd think that Dan LeBatard's 'mock(ing) the system' might be one of the additional actions necessary to effect change or improvement in the process. Apparently not.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Radio Chaos

Here's what well-known football critic and Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy told an Indianapolis radio station today:

"I’m begging [the Colts] to come in here and play up to [their] potential; in my view, [the Patriots] are one of the worst 12-4 teams ever assembled.”

(And no, The CHB did not mention the other crappy 12-4 teams on his list.)

Rooting for the story, eh? Well the story is The CHB's incessant flip-flopping, which at this point is probably giving him whiplash.

Wanting It Both Ways - II

Every now and then, the Shankster's columns make for national mock and ridicule. Yesterday's column is one of them. A brief sample of the comments:
Screw you, Shaughnessy. This is such an obvious setup for a potential post-Pats-loss "ha, ha, you suckers thought this team was invincible" column that it's ridiculous.

Colt 45, Pats 10. I normally would think the Pats would win this game, but the author of that article just buried the Pats in his douchiness.

It's just that (a) Shaughnessy's trolling is 100% predictable and paint-by-numbers, (b) someone actually pays him a salary to do it, and pays to send him on the road to cover large events, and (c) as somedude210 said, people outside New England read CHB and think he speaks for us when locals generally hate him with the fire of a thousand suns.

What a cocksucker. Does he not watch the NFL? Is he not aware that the Colts beat San Fran, Denver, and Seattle?

Wait, CHB is calling the Colts lucky? Did he watch the Patriots play at all this season?

If the Patriots' success hinged on how big a douche their sportswriters were, they wouldn't have won a game since the Nixon administration.

Pay no attention to the hack behind the curtain. He is just trying to pump up the market for his new book about the Curse of the Hobbino, which explores the widespread belief that the Patriots will never win another Super Bowl due to their mistreatment of star defensive back Ellis Hobbs.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

The One Where He Wants It Both Ways

The Patriots stink, but they will still win on Sunday because the Colts stink more.

That's The CHB's take today.

The Colts are 22-10 over the past two years. It's tough to call them patsies. (The Pats have won 24 over that same time.) It is not, as The CHB says, "just like two years ago." Andrew Luck is not Tim Tebow.

But here's where Shank goes off the ledge: "The abject mediocrity of the AFC is now the Patriots’ best friend. And so we can only ask: In a season in which no team has distinguished itself, why can’t a depleted Patriots team go all the way to the Super Bowl?"

Well, why doesn't he answer that himself, like he did on Dec. 16:, when he asserted that "these Patriots simply are not that good. [T]he notion that they were the AFC’s top seed is laughable."

To sum up Shank's argument: the Pats will make it to the Super Bowl, but it's because no team in the AFC, Patriots included, are any good.

Friday, January 03, 2014

Rem Badge of Courage

The "Bravest Columnist Joe Sullivan Has Ever Known" takes a break from writing about, well, nothing, to pen what most would consider a serious-minded column ... and then fails to provide an opinion.

Yes, indeed, while Shank has no problem offering his keen insights into such vital issues as "The Top 12 QBs in the Playoffs" or "BarStools I Have Known and Loved," when he attempts to handle something heavy, he inevitably kicks the can down the road.

Remy, the popular Red Sox announcer, has been sidelined since last year after his son reportedly murdered his girlfriend. It appears the exile is self-imposed, as NESN indicates it would like Remy to return.

What does The CHB think about this "awful and awkward" situation? "Now [Remy] has to make a hard decision."

How insightful.

How poetic.

How brave.

Thursday, January 02, 2014


A day after John Henry the Boston Globe snubs Shank's latest book on baseball, Shank responds with the most obligatory, boring and predictable of NFL playoff columns - the quarterback rating column!
When it comes to handicapping the NFL playoffs, it’s all about quarterbacks. The tournament starts Saturday, when the Chiefs play at Indianapolis. Here’s one man’s ranking of the 12 QBs in the 2014 postseason.
To anyone that follows football, that's probably the most informative part of the column, and the rest of it is equally uninspired and underwhelming.

Truly an epic mail-in job of biblical proportions...

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Booked (Not So) Solid

Good judgment, or a Shanktastic oversight?

Either way, The Boston Globe dissed The CHB's memoir with Terry Francona, as it failed to make the Globe's top sports books of the year.

Perhaps the 2013 Series win undercut just a little of Francona/Shaughnessy's argument that management cared more about marketing than on-field results.