Saturday, October 31, 2015

Bean Misfire

Something to understand about The CHB: He is not predisposed to athletes with brown skin.

If a Hispanic pitcher offers up a high, hard one, he's an "irresponsible baby."

If it's a white pitcher delivering the goods, however, as Mets hurler Noah Sydergaard did last night in World Series Game 3 against the Royals, it's the "ultimate New York moment" that "changed everything."

Beyond acting as baseball's color guard (get it?), The CHB as usual overstates the importance of a single moment in the game of baseball, especially when it comes to pitching inside.

He has written often about the game where Alex Rodriguez was made to eat the better part of Jason Varitek's mitt, calling it the "day the passive Red Sox finally fought back." Right. The Sox were so fired up, they went 7-6 over the next 13 games. And the Yankees were so taken aback, they only won 10 of their next 14 contests.

But don't let the facts get in the way of a good cliche.

"The World Series is back in New York and the Mets are back in the Series," The CHB gushes.

(Except that tonight they lost to go down 3-1, so ...)

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Hot Patriots Takes, By Dan Shaughnessy

With the Patriots losing the coin toss, then rolling on the Miami Dolphins 19 - 0 at halftime, Shank issues these trenchant observations of the game:

The Wit Of Dan Shaughnessy

Dan Shaughnessy, unaware that the AFC East currently has the second highest win total of the eight divisions in the NFL, continues to peddle the cutesy 'tomato can' meme, and combines it with the last name of the new Miami Dolphins coach to get extra cutesy:
We breathlessy await the inevitable 'coin flip' tweet...

Hair Raising Column

Pretending to write about Game 2 of the 2015 World Series, Shank milks a theme:
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Hair. Long, beautiful hair. Here, there, everywhere.

It was Woodstock Meets World Series at Kauffman Stadium Wednesday night as two long-haired moundsmen took the ball at the start of Game 2 of the 111th World Series. It was Kansas City’s Johnny Cueto and his Bob Marley dreadlocks vs. New York’s Jacob deGrom, who appears to be auditioning for the Bee Gees.

Step aside, “Take Me Out To the Ball Game.” Game 2 could have been played to the tune of David Crosby’s “Almost Cut My Hair.’’
Song and band references from the Sixties & Seventies? That's a new one!

From there, the cookie-cutter game recap is done, and one last lame hair reference concludes the 'effort':
The story line rarely changes with the great young players: Hair today . . . gone tomorrow.

Sorry. Couldn’t resist.
For the sake of your readers, maybe you should.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Sensing A Theme Here

Stuck In History

Shank knows this theme well - it defines his entire career as a sports reporter and columnist and constitutes the majority of his Game 1 recap of the 2015 World Series. This game ended roughly an hour ago - try telling me this column wasn't written either before or as the game progressed. There's nary a god damned thing about the actual game itself, like he was sipping on comped beers the whole time when this retro mode suddenly shot over him.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — No sports institution values history, and gets stuck in history, like Major League Baseball.

And you never know when history will be made.

Let’s take the opening game of the 2015 World Series on Tuesday night, for example. The 5-4 Royals win in 14 innings — tied for the longest game in Series history — was heartfelt and historic. One for the ages. It featured the sorrowful scene of a pitcher (KC’s Edinson Volquez) starting the game just hours after the death of his father. It featured the first Series inside-the-park homer (KC’s Alcides Escobar) since the immortal Mule Haas turned the trick against the Cubs in 1929. It featured the first Series game delay (fourth inning) owed to a television power outage. It featured the first series late-inning go-ahead run due to a first baseman’s error (Eric Hosmer) since Bill Buckner’s gaffe-for-the-ages in 1986. It featured a game-saving, bottom-of-the-ninth homer by KC’s Alex Gordon off Met closer Jeurys Familia — a Kirk Gibson-esque moment for sure. It featured an 11th-inning Dwight Evans-like running catch by Met right fielder Curtis Granderson.

All this on October 27, a historic date for the Mets, the Royals, and yes, the Red Sox.

The Royals are sitting on a World Series drought of 29 years. The last time Kansas City sat atop the baseball world was Oct. 27, 1985, when Brett Saberhagen beat John Tudor in the seventh game of the World Series.

The Mets also like Oct. 27. That’s the day that they recovered from a 3-0 deficit (two days after the Buckner game) and beat the Red Sox, 8-5, in the seventh game of the 1986 World Series. The Mets have not won the World Series in 30 years.

All good Red Sox fans celebrate Oct. 27 because it was 11 years ago on that date that the Sox broke an 86 year curse (wholly invented by Shank - ed. )under a blood red moon in St. Louis. Oct. 27 is an unofficial Hub Hardball Holiday.
Only an old dinosaur of a columnist could churn out the following self-serving swill:
The Mets are still about Tom Seaver, Dwight Gooden, Keith Hernandez, and Gary Carter. The Royals are about George Brett, Bo Jackson, and Saberhagen. It’s going to take a championship in 2015 to awaken fans to a new generation of baseball gods.
I could write something detailed about the aforementioned pitcher that would be rejected by my co-blogger. It involves 'friends' in other cities when baseball players travel to said other cities, and it will be left at that.

And noted nutritionist Dan Shaughnessy feels the need to weigh in on the following, which would bring great sadness to the likes of former Red Sox pitcher Bob Stanley:
It might also be considered a bad omen for baseball when you wake up on the first day of the World Series and read that the World Health Organization has determined that hot dogs — the official food of baseball for 120 years — actually cause cancer. What ever happened to baseball standing for “all that was once good” in America?
Short response to that one - how many times in your life did you hear 'health experts' declare that eggs were bad for you, then good for you, then bad for you, and so on?

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

He Really Is A Miserable Fuck

It's that, or Shank's a) just hoping to move more of his books by perpetuating the now vanquished Curse of The Bambino or b) reflexive hate of the Boston Red Sox. Check out these retweets in the past hour:

Then again, all these reasons are right on the money.

Patriots Blamed In 3, 2, 1...

Informative World Series Tweets, By Dan Shaughnessy

Our Man Shank is on the scene in Kansas City:
Guess he'll be hitting the bar soon, eh?


No, this isn't a picked up pieces column, but reading Shank's opening World Series missive gives the distinct whiff of a column half written while taking a dump in the bathroom:
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Perhaps you don’t care about the World Series. Understood. A lot of folks in Boston don’t care. The Red Sox have morphed into a perennial doormat, far removed from the postseason baseball conversation, and it’s all about the Patriots these days. The Patriots play the Dolphins on Thursday night. Kickoff is at 8:25 p.m.
You mean the doormat that's won three of the previous eleven World Series? There's no other word to describe this guy besides shithead.

From there, Shank devotes the column to fellow pasty white Irishman Dan Murphy, second baseman of the New York Mets, who played with Rob Gronkowski's brother in college. That's the column, and you're welcome in advance for saving you the chore of reading it.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Johnny One Note

Nope - this'll never get old!

Shank's aware these games have been close in recent years, right?

Saturday, October 24, 2015

A Well Known Subject

Shank is familiar with this theme. A week or two after helping to get Kirk Minihane shitcanned from Comcast SportsNet, he can't help but wonder:
The hate has drained out of Patriots-Jets

Jet Week was too tame for me. Robert’s Rules Of Order replaced the Hatfields and McCoys. We saw respect from both camps. We heard one polite comment after another. In a week that’s traditionally full of fury and foolishness, trash talk was banished to the curb.

So little emotion. No cheap shots.
Any theories?
I think I can explain this absence of malice. From the New York side, folks are simply consumed with the Amazin’ Mets, who look like they are going to win their first World Series since the 1986 Metropolitans shocked Bill Buckner and the Boston Red Sox. The Mets’ magic ride in October of 2015 is the stuff of legend and has taken Apple folks’ eyes off the matchup with the Patriots.

Here in New England, the Jets have moved to the back of the pack of Patriot enemies. There are so many teams we hate more now. In the wake of Deflategate, the Colts and Ravens have moved to the top of New England’s Nixonian enemies list.

It’s hard to get fired up about Ryan Fitzpatrick when the region has so much hate reserved for Roger Goodell, Chris Mortensen, Bill Polian, and Bob Kravitz. After decades of annoying the Patriots, the Jets played virtually no role in the Deflategate debacle.
In conclusion...
Doormats in recent seasons (4-12 last year), the Jets are a surprising 4-1, losing only to the Eagles. All of New York’s victories have been by margins of at least 13 points. New York’s defense ranks first in the league in points and yards allowed. The Jets have an easy schedule the rest of the way. They have a rookie coach (Todd Bowles), who presents as a mature adult instead of a rat (Mangini) or a clown (Rex Ryan).
So much for the Tomato Can Division theory...

Thursday, October 22, 2015

This Is Why He's Called Shank, Folks

The origin of this nickname can be traced back to Glenn Ordway (I believe it was late 1990's), and this notion has just been heavily reinforced. I spotted a response to one of Shank's tweets earlier this week alluding to this matter, and now there's confirmation:
Kirk Minihane vs CSNNE (and Fred Toucher, Tony Massarotti and Dan Shaughnessy.)

Minihane said that Fred Toucher and Tony Massarotti went to the powers to be at Comcast SportsNet and asked them to keep Minihane off the air.

He also stated that Dan Shaughnessy has actively been trying to screw him over and cause him to lose work. Mostly because Minihane calls him Shank. Bart Hubbuch also factors into this, after he took the clip of Minihane saying that Roger Goodell should be “murdered” and put it on Twitter, leaving out the part where Minihane said he was joking.

Minihane, John Dennis and Gerry Callahan did an expletive-filled podcast on the topic where Kirk let loose on his enemies and what he feels they’ve done to him.

Dennis touches on his long-standing hate-feud with Gene Lavanchy as well.
I don't have a solid opinion about Minihane, but I'm aware he's kind of a shit stirrer like Shank. Why can't shit stirrers all get along?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Fisk and Shits

Quick: Do you remember where you were on this date 40 years ago?

The correct answers are "of course not" and "who cares."

As it turns out, it was 40 years ago today that Carlton Fisk hit the 12-inning homer to beat the Reds in the 1975 World Series. It was Game 6 before there was "Game 6."*

And that's what The CHB wants to tell us about.

Here's the problem: Fisk's moment was transcendent. The date doesn't matter. It's an iconic moment, not in baseball history, not in New England history, but in SPORTS history. For years it was part of opening sequence to the NBC Game of the Week, and the Bat in the Night is part of a display in Cooperstown.

What's more, everyone and their dog is trotting out pieces on it this week. Even The Boston Globe Magazine beat Shank to the punch.

Oh, the problems with the piece are rampant. The CHB says Fred Lynn was the "best center fielder we’d see until Jackie Bradley Jr. came around." Not even close. Coco Crisp -- the prototype for JBJ -- was twice the defensive CF that Fragile Freddy was. Even Rick Miller, Lynn's contemporary, was a superior OF.

He calls Luis Tiant the "best best big-game pitcher we would ever see." El Tiante had a 2.86 ERA and 20 strikeouts in 34 post-season innings. Jon Lester has a 2.85 ERA and 87 K's in 98 innings -- in a higher octane offensive era. (Perhaps Shank keeps his eyes closed when Lester is on the mound.)

All in all, Shaughnessy's homage is familiar in tone and content to Clark Booth's writeup from 2004.
Fisk's home run is memorable. The CHB's hasty, crappy memory of it, not so much.

*Screw you, Buckner!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Milking It, By Dan Shaughnessy

Flipping channels after seeing the Kansas City Royals killing the Toronto Blue Jays, 9-2 in the seventh inning, I spot Shank on the Early Edition of the local cable channel Comcast Sports Net New England. The subject of Shank's appearance? A rehashing of yesterdays column. Quelle surprise!

No heavy lifting, and an appearance fee. The only thing missing was a free meal somewhere. Great day for Shank!

Monday, October 19, 2015

And Why Shouldn't He?

A lazy, lethargic Boston Globe sports columnist takes nearly a full day to deliver his take on last night's Patriots / Colts game. The entirety of Shank's column is so chock full of lies, bullshit and borderline slander that the only effective remedy is for this blogger to deliver the required Fisking of the column in its entirety, or close to it.
Angry Tom Brady is force to be reckoned with

Once again after the Patriots’ 34-27 victory Sunday night in Indianapolis, Tom Brady was quick to brush aside the media.

By Dan Shaughnessy Globe Staff October 20, 2015

Tom Brady is an angry man. This is probably a good thing for the Patriots and Patriot fans.

No more Mr. Nice Guy. Brady is captain of the Revenge Tour and he no longer cares about hurting anybody’s feelings. He’s not going to go out of his way to help, or be nice to folks who weren’t nice to him after the air was taken out of the balls last season. After Sunday’s 34-27 win in Indianapolis, Brady blew off NBC’s Michele Tafoya, then issued three terse answers when asked about keeping a souvenir football or two.
Please explain the rationale for being nice to a group of people who, on a collective basis, called you a cheater or worse and doubted your integrity for the past nine months, Mr. Shaughnessy. Naturally, that rationale is not provided here.
Q: “Did you keep the football after the game, and if so, I was curious what that meant to you and what make you want to keep that football?”

A: “I didn’t keep it.’’

Q: “I saw you kept two balls for a keepsake, one after LeGarrette Blount’s touchdown run, and then at the end of the game you put the football in your helmet. Why two footballs? Are you giving it to somebody else?”
A: “I didn’t keep them.’’

Q: “Are they going to somebody else?”

A: “I don’t know.’’

Deflate that.
Whatever that's supposed to mean!

But wait - it gets better:
Brady has been brief and joyless in his mandated weekly and postgame sessions with folks who cover the Patriots. He is doing the minimum and nothing more. He will take a few questions, move his lips, then wrap up abruptly with, “Thanks, guys.’’
Any reason why this might be the case, Einstein?
It doesn’t matter, of course. All that matters is what Brady does on the field and the results are thus far unimpeachable. Brady no longer has Randy Moss or a veteran line, but he is more precise than ever. He has one interception in five games and that was a ball that bounced off Julian Edelman. Not Tom’s fault.

Brady was clearly angry at the end of the game. A lot of that anger comes from his insistence on perfection.
You're sure about that?

He can’t stand leaving points on the field. He knows that the Patriots’ offense could not shut the door Sunday night. They could not put the game away the way they wanted. Like coach Bill Belichick, Brady wants to finish strong every week. When he doesn’t finish strong, he’s angry.

The most telling statement he made to the local media last week was an acknowledgment that “I’m human.’’

He’s human and the fallout from Deflategate has made him angry. After the AFC Championship game, Brady was hung out to dry by just about everyone except his dad.
And including a certain Boston Globe sports columnist! Eager to keep the fires of DeflateGate burning, in an impressive display of passive / aggressive behavior, Shank goes on:

First his coach said, “Ask Tom.’’
Shot at coach Belichick? check.

Then his owner, ever hungry to keep his seat at the NFL’s Big Boy table, played footsie with the Commish and the other owners and accepted the largest punishment in the history of the league. This made it open season on Tom, his legacy, his honor.
Except that this 'open season' on Tom Brady by the NFL league office exceeded / violated their own rules on this sort of thing.

Then it was leaked that Brady destroyed his cellphone on the day he was called to testify before Ted Wells.
It's of questionable legal or NFL precedent / requirement whether Brady was required to turn that data or phone over to Ted Wells. This is just further evidence into Shanks lack of knowledge of the situation.

When the starry-eyed judge ultimately lifted Brady’s suspension, the haters (a.k.a “realists”) were quick to remind everyone that Brady was not cleared of guilt as much as he was allowed back on the field because of the bungled procedures by the league.
So we're supposed to believe that the NFL's appeals process, clearly lacking in the due process department and clearly stated as such by Federal judge Berman, was overturned on a mere technicality?

Tom is human so he’s no doubt wounded that so many were quick to brand him as a liar and a cheater. Longtime Patriot watchers know that Brady’s greatness and his honors are owed to talent, hard work, and a magical coach-player relationship unseen since Messrs. Auerbach and Russell ruled the basketball world.

We don’t really know Tom.
Jesus H. Christ, where have we heard this disingenuous tripe before?

But we have seen him grow and mature in his 16 seasons in Foxboro. We have seen him cultivate and polish an image as a man of wealth and taste. We have seen him marry a woman more wealthy and famous than himself. We have seen him applaud one president at a State of the Union address, then snub another president when the Patriots were invited to the White House. We have seen him demonstrate more emotion and anger on the sideline.

Meanwhile, we are hearing him say less in almost every public forum.

This year, he’s done a couple of friendly sitdowns with former Patriot quarterback Scott Zolak on “Patriots All Access”, but that’s about it as far as television goes. On the radio side, Brady’s remained loyal to WEEI’s “The Dennis & Callahan Show,” which promises to feature Tom again Tuesday at 9 a.m.
Again, why should he appear on hostile media shows after the beating he's taken over the past nine months? Inquiring minds might need that answer.

Is this misdirection?

Last week’s Brady segment on WEEI was revealing, and at times, disturbing. Brady was neither terse nor angry. When effectively cornered by host Kirk Minihane regarding Brady’s disgraced training guru Alex Guerrero, Brady spoke passionately and at great length. Brady correctly reminded us that his good health and great play is the best advertisement for Guerrero’s alternative methods, but also sounded like a man who has come under the spell of manipulative forces. There was a Tim Thomas/Tom Cruise level of discovery in that interview that made some of us wonder who’s pulling the strings behind Brady’s iron curtain.

Brady’s personal health choices are his and his alone, and worthy of great respect, but he gets into a dangerous area when he promotes his body coach/business partner with statements such as, “What I want to provide to athletes — so much of it is being pro-active — not wanting to get sick, not wanting to get injured. Lifestyle choices are very important to your health and wellness.’’
It appears to the casual observer that Brady has done just fine in this department as it concerns personal health. But hey, Shank's just asking the question!

Swell. But there’s a hint of blaming victims in all this. Let’s not suggest that everyone who gets cancer or a concussed could have prevented it with better eating habits. Please don’t try telling us that “when you get hit the head,’’ you should ask yourself, “What have you done previously to try to prevent those things?’’

Brady is taunting the sports god when he suggest that avoiding NFL injuries is a “lifestyle choice.’’ What’s the magic potion that saves any quarterback from the Bernard Pollard hit?
This is disingenuous in the extreme - you need to read into that and draw false conclusions to conclude otherwise. From this standpoint, Tom Brady has taken care of himself physically and, aside from that Bernard Pollard hit, has largely avoided serious injury. This blogger is pretty sure this angle is not subject to debate.

But by all means, let's bring up something from thirty fucking years ago!

Something tells me that the Patriots hierarchy is not pleased that Guerrero is traveling with the team and working with multiple players. It reminds me of a situation with Celtic scorer Scott Wedman and his personal trainer when the C’s played the Lakers in the epic 1984 NBA Finals. Wedman’s guy, Steve Krischel, was banned from the locker room after he worked on Robert Parish’s shoulder. (”I thought the guy was a plumber,’’ said Celtic trainer Ray Melchiorre.)

That’s not going to happen to Guerrero. The Patriots are going to let Brady do anything he wants. He’s the ticket to Super Bowl 50.

Tom can say whatever he wants. Or say nothing.

Terse or talkative, an angry Tom Brady is good for the business of winning another Super Bowl.

Friday, October 16, 2015

And Now For More Boston Globe Bashing - XXVI

Stop me if you've heard this one before - the Boston Globe announced some layoffs:
The Boston Globe on Thursday underwent a staff reduction for the second year running as the newspaper seeks to cut costs and deploy more resources toward its digital efforts.

According to multiple sources at The Globe, at least 10 employees are being laid off, with more than a dozen staffers accepting buyouts.

In an email, Boston Globe Editor Brian McGrory said the newspaper had “nothing to announce at the moment.”

The layoffs, which have been anticipated by Globe staffers for some time, come several months after the Globe announced a buyout program seeking volunteers to trim headcount at the newspaper.

At the end of July, McGrory said in a note to staffers that the newspaper was seeking to streamline its copy desk and alter its Web production, layout and design processes.

“It will mean that most stories will get fewer reads, placing more responsibility on reporters and line editors to make sure they’re in good shape,” McGrory wrote. “It means that rather than a copy desk, we will have a multiplatform production desk where stories are copy edited, posted on line, perhaps placed in the social stream, and later set on pages for print.”
In other words, get ready for more screw-ups.

At least we'll have Shank to kick around some more!

Twitter Trolling

Shank's gonna have to step up his game if he's trying to antagonize everybody in Indianapolis:

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Living Someone Else's Dream

The CHB hates the basement dwelling stat boys, who have ruined baseball for the "real" fans. So what does he do but pen a loving soliloquy to Daniel Okrent, one of the fellows who cooked up (get it?) the idea for Rotisserie baseball, aka fantasy sports.

Unfortunately for The CHB, the idea to write on Okrent has been done many times, not of leat of which by Okrent himself.

Indeed, the money quote from Okrent that The CHB uses is, in fact, the same quote used in a piece on Mr. Fantasy in The New Yorker in April: "I feel like J. Robert Oppenheimer, having invented the atomic bomb." And it shows up again in a piece in 2011. If that's not enough, here's a video of Okrent himself making -- yes he does -- the exact same comment, and referring to how he's been dropping it for more than 20 years!

This is an old, old story. Okrent published a column about it in SI more than 30 years ago. Two of Okrent's cofounders then wrote a book on, titled, appropriately, Rotisserie League Baseball. 

If that weren't enough, the Washington Post also did a column on this earlier this year.

If one were to read The New Yorker column, one would think perhaps Shank borrowed from it a bit too, shall we say, liberally? From how he came up with the idea "on a flight from Hartford to Austin," to how it was nurtured from infancy to a full-fledged industry, to the potential impact of the gambling sites on the real games, there's a lot of similarities here (The New Yorker's piece is much more extensive and well-researched, unsurprisingly).

We are used to The CHB plagiarizing himself ad nauseam. Now he's really pushing the publishing boundaries.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Plenty of Mileage in Pats Payback Meme

There's always a theme, regardless of how contrived it is.

For the Red Sox, it was the Curse of the Bambino. Then it was the Carpetbaggers (when John Henry beat out the local favorites to buy the team.) From there it became the Sons of Bill James, in reference to the use of -- gasp! -- data to aid decision making.

For the Patriots, the latest contrivance is the Patriot Revenge Tour, and the myth The CHB is pushing today is built on the notion that the teams the Patriots are facing/demolishing were all somehow involved in the Deflategate conspiracy.

Of course, this runs completely counter to the Bill Belichickian approach that each game, nay, each series is simply about executing perfectly, no matter the opposition.

Furthermore, it ignores the fact that Shank himself was convinced the Patriots had cheated.

No worries. He'll get plenty of mileage out of this latest made-up motto. Indeed, in pure Shankesque fashion, he already has.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

It's News To Him?

Catching up on recent events (or the past decade), Shank does his formulaic weekly Sunday football column.
IRVING, Texas — When American Airlines Flight 1583 from Boston touched down in the Texas prairie Friday morning, a flight attendant welcomed the passengers to Dallas/Fort Worth, thanked us for flying American, then said, “Go Patriots!’’ and played “Dirty Water” over the speaker system.

Just about everyone on board roared in approval. A sprinkling of fans in Cowboys garb slinked into their seats and said nothing.

“How ’bout them Patriots?!’’

The axis of power has shifted dramatically in NFL America. There was a time when the Cowboys were America’s Team, God’s Team, the North Dallas Forty, and perennial Super Bowl contenders. They had the iconic Lone Star logo. Their owner was a caricature of new money and old ego. The Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders were subjects of books and a television movie. The Cowboys were the gold standard in the NFL; the ultimate brand in America’s new national pastime. The Cowboys were pro football’s Yankees. You either loved them or you hated them. No one was neutral.

He Won't Complain About The Barbecue

...but he'll bitch about the lack of amenities:

Thursday, October 08, 2015

I Felt The Same Way

Do you remember this column, faithful readers? I watched tonight's episode of Comcast Sports Net's 'The Early Show', hosted by Gary Tanguay, and I had a painful reminder of what an obnoxious, stubborn, obtuse asshole Glenn Ordway has become since his days with Johnny Most doing Celtics games. I simply could not bear to listen to this fucking carnival barker on WEEI's 'The Big Show' because Ordway has an overly loud mouth, to the point I found it borderline unprofessional, even for sports talk shows. I used to tune into that miserable excuse for sports commentary when Ordway would simply START FUCKING SCREAMING OVER HIS CALLERS - YEEEEARGH! within a minute or two of myself tuning in, just to win the argument over said caller. I'd rather do acupuncture to myself with rusty nails.

Apparently, this old dog cannot learn new tricks:

I just happened to tune in tonight when this was happening, and I had a baaad flashback. Right on fucking cue, Ordway starts raising his voice multiple times when Tanguay was saying something, and the tweeter Kevin Flanagan was dead on with this comment, as Shank was pretty uncomfortable during those segments when he was on with Ordway. Hope the check clears, Shank!

I mention 'obtuse' for this reason - Tanguay brought up the upcoming Patriots / Cowboys game, and he asked (paraphrasing) - 'Is this game a measure of revenge for Robert Kraft on Jerry Jones, given that Jones would not help out Kraft during Deflategate?' Multiple times, Ordway starts looking at and waving his notes and saying / rephrasing - 'I don't see Kraft on the roster - is he playing at linebacker / corner? Is he in the lineup?'. Even with Shank chiming in and backing up Tanguay's notion, Ordway kept at it, not budging an inch, completely ignoring or missing the point they both were making and waving around his notes like that should end the argument in his favor. I think Ordway's just a complete piece of shit at this point in his career.

It got even more uncomfortable a few hours later on that channel when I flipped back to Felger's Comcast Sports Net show. Ron Borges got on Marc 'Beetle' Bertrand because Beetle criticized Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for not getting back to winning playoff football over the past decade or show, at one point calling Beetle an idiot. Of course, Felger's laughing the whole time, and he didn't even have to instigate that fight. I was hoping for Beetle to knock Borges on his ass and do a bellyflop on him and break a few of his ribs, but I'll just have to tune in later and see if the steel cage match between them becomes reality.

Seriously, what a complete shitshow tonight was on local sports programming...

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Mr. October

Shank starts his annual sporadic coverage of the baseball postseason and, as luck would have it, writes a column about the Chicago Cubs and former Red sox general manager Theo Epstein.
Theo Epstein isn’t complaining. His Chicago Cubs just finished their regular season with 97 wins, which hasn’t been topped by any Cubs team since 1945, and the Cubs’ whole season could be over Wednesday night . . . but Theo knows that’s how the playoffs work. He was a little kid in Brookline when the 99-win Red Sox were taken out of the playoffs by a swing of Bucky Dent’s bat back in 1978.

Doesn’t matter. That’s October baseball. And there’s no crying.

Nothing in baseball beats a one-game playoff. That’s what we saw Tuesday night when the Astros beat the Yankees, 3-0, and that’s what we get Wednesday night in Pittsburgh when the Cubs and Pirates — two of the three best teams in baseball — play a single game for the right to move into the Division Round.

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Funny Shank Story

I should have posted this in a more timely manner, but I still need to mention it even after this brief passage of time. It sometimes makes me wonder why Shank doesn't do this more often, given that he could tell more of these stories, but then I realize he just loves being a negative asshole.

In any event, Shank was on the Bertrand & Zolak radio show three or four weeks ago about his trip to New Orleans during Super Bowl XXXI when the Patriots were playing the Green Bay Packers. It was the Saturday night before the game, and Shank was with some people on Bourbon Street when a bunch of revelers were bopping around, including one guy dressed up as a clown. The clown goes by Shank & company, takes a few steps, then turns around and yells out - 'Shaughnessy - YOU SUCK!'

Monday, October 05, 2015

Deep Thoughts, By Dan Shaughnessy

Tin Foil Hat Securely In Place

I'm not saying Shank's a conspiracy theorist, but sometimes you have to wonder...

He Came To Bury Them

As the Red Sox wrap up their 2015 season, Shank expands on his douchebag tweet from yesterday (which one? - ed.) and gives his negativity a full column.
CLEVELAND — In an effort to “close that loop’’ and “make sure we protect ourselves,” Red Sox baseball boss Dave Dombrowski announced Sunday that John Farrell will manage the team next season and that Torey Lovullo has signed a two-year extension to remain as bench coach while forfeiting his right to interview for managerial positions for one year.

Swell. The Sox do not intend to replace the skipper who stepped aside in mid-August to undergo treatment for Stage 1 lymphoma. Meanwhile, the Sox have secured the services of Lovullo, the popular interim manager who was at the helm when the team played better (28-20) over the last six weeks of yet another last-place season. If Farrell at any point is not healthy enough to manage, Lovullo will be present and prepared to take over.

All good.

But what if Farrell is healthy and the Sox get off to another bad start? What if things go sour for a prolonged stretch next season? A number of fans and some voices in the media already have made it clear they believe Lovullo deserves the job. Won’t Lovullo’s presence create a massive distraction?
Looking at the time line of his two tweets on the subject (the first being the announcement of the signings, then the douchebag follow-up tweet posted below), it took him a whopping six minutes to think of the best negative angle available to him. What Shank 'accomplishes' with this column is interject his perpetual negativity into these recent signings and keep people talking about the Red Sox and himself. Mission accomplished.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Doubling Down

Leave it to Shank to put negative spin on today's Red Sox announcement that manager John Farrell and bench coach Torey Lovullo are coming back next year:
Of course Shank has to guess that Lovullo was 'taken care of', since he's persona non grata with the Red Sox.

Fantastic Timing, Shank!

Here's Shank with his most recent column, written yesterday around 12:00 PM:
CLEVELAND — Red Sox manager-on-leave John Farrell is still battling cancer, and interim manager Torey Lovullo is likely to be a hot commodity in a few days.

It is a big bowl of awkward.

The Sox finish their season Sunday at Progressive Field against the Indians. That’s when the managerial firings will start around baseball. That’s when Sox boss Dave Dombrowski might start getting calls from folks who want to interview Lovullo.

Lovullo has been the manager since Farrell went on medical leave to be treated for Stage 1 lymphoma Aug. 14. The Sox were a whopping 13 games under .500 when Lovullo took over and have been one of the top teams in baseball since. ASaturday night’s loss, the Sox were 28-19 under Lovullo.
A mere twenty-four hours later:
CLEVELAND — John Farrell will be back as manager of the Red Sox in 2016, the team announced on Sunday.

Bench coach Torey Lovullo, who has managed the team since Farrell took leave to receive treatment for cancer, agreed to a two-year contract and waived the right to pursue any managerial positions for 2016.
My my, that was... awkward!

The moral to this story - if Shank hadn't nuked his bridges with the Red Sox, he would have known this was coming and could have avoided embarrassing himself once again and providing more fodder for us.