Tongue firmly in cheek and dripping with sarcasm, Shank uses the first few paragraphs to take his patented dump on the Olde Town Team:
Welcome to Jeter-palooza. Hub Fans Bid Jetes Adieu. Three final sellouts and more eyeballs diverted from the train wreck of the 2014 Red Sox.The rest of the column is in fact devoted to Jeter, and the obligatory comparison to Ted Williams is made.
The Red Sox are truly blessed. They’ve managed to finish in last place in two of the last three seasons, but everybody’s still having a swell time singing “Sweet Caroline’’ before the home half of the eighth.
Nobody’s mad at the Local Nine. After all, they’ve won the World Series three times in 10 years and they won it last year and they’re going to bring Jon Lester back (OK, I made that one up) and everybody is happy just to enjoy another day in America’s most beloved ballpark.
Fenway fans don’t mind paying the highest prices in baseball to watch the Pawtucket Red Sox stagger across the finish line in the basement of the once-proud American League East. Now, thanks to Derek Jeter, the ready-for-golf Red Sox and Yankees are the feature game on Fox today, and seats behind the Yankee dugout Sunday are fetching something north of $20,000.
And in case you needed to be reminded about the Red Sox' performance in recent years, Mr. Sunshine drives the point home to wrap things up:
The Red Sox, meanwhile, continue to enjoy the widespread notion that they are a perennial contender. They are not. Since losing the 2008 ALCS to Tampa in 2008, the Sox have won a playoff game in only one of six Octobers. They have not made the playoffs in four of the last five years. Since Sept. 1, 2011, they are an aggregate 24 games under .500.
But never mind all that. Pay no attention to those AL East standings on the Green Monster. The sun is shining and Derek Jeter is here to say goodbye. It’s going to be a great baseball weekend.