Tuesday, December 29, 2015

He Means Anything Recorded After 1979

Is Shank Pretending To Be An NBA Scout?

I couldn't help but think that when I read this article:
The latest case comes from a NBA scout who anonymously commented on several of Kentucky’s basketball players to Sportsnet New York’s Adam Zagoria in the wake of the Wildcats’ 75-73 win over Louisville Saturday, praising point guard Tyler Ulis, offering mixed comments on shooting guard Jamal Murray and calling big man Skal Labissiere a “fraud,” “a ‘Paper Tiger,'” and “a mock draft myth.”
One word here certainly sticks out, doesn't it?

It's not like Shank lacks the motivation to take a shot at coach Calipari. I'm just asking the question!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Flipped Out

It's Dan's World...we just live in it.

Or so he wants us to think, given the lede to his column today:

It amuses me that the football world is talking about coin flips, deferrals, arrogance, hubris, amazing luck, insulting the opposition, and the Patriots’ chances to win Super Bowl 50 in Santa Clara Feb. 7.  
Welcome to my world. I’ve been writing about this stuff for years. Finally, everyone is paying attention.

Ahh, yes. The CHB knows football! He knows Cover 2 and the stack. He knows the nickel and the blind side and the short side. He knows the route tree and the "T."  He even knows the Statue of Liberty (the play and the drink). He's brilliant, and we would do well to bask in his reflected glory.

Getting back to reality, the only thing Shank knows about football is that he can't play it. He certainly can't critique it. What he thinks passes for analysis is really just one part observation mixed with two parts whining.

For example, The CHB thinks he was the first (and only) fellow to notice that Patriots head coach Bill Belichick defers the ball when they win the coin flip (which they almost always do). To The CHB, this is arrogance (and perhaps, cheating). To the rest of us, this is common sense: when the hole parts and you can walk in for the score, you do so.

Next, confirming what we had guessed at before, Shank reports on what all the bloggers and tweeters have to say. We always assumed The CHB spent most of his day listening to talk radio and reading what others wrote, then lifting either the best lines, or, when he was feeling particularly lazy or hungover or both, the entire premise of the column.

He compounds his journalistic sins by alleging for the umpteenth time that the Patriots throw games in order to improve their playoff chances.

Finally, he closes with the most pathetic of puns: "Heads they win. Tails you lose." Stolen from Jim Rome?  Or Ben Watanabe? Or Barstool Sports?

Arrogance is ripping off the same lame retread column and somehow thinking it makes you clever.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

...Or Did The Patriots Screw Up In Overtime?

If Shank does a column on this game, this call will be central to it:

UPDATE AT 4:31 PM - Just heard part of the press conference by coach Belichick. He stated unequivocally that they elected to kick.

Let The Second Guessing Begin!

Posted within seconds of the New York Jets beating the Patriots 26 - 20, Shank invents an excuse for being glaringly wrong on his prior afternoon tweets:

Never mind that Baltimore beat Pittsburgh fifteen or so minutes ago, but we gots to be sure!

You Were Saying?

Shank, the great prognosticator:

Familiar Concept


Original Patriots Tweets, By Dan Shaughnessy

Check the coins, Shank!

Your Stupid Shank Tweet Of The Day

Then again, the Patriots haven't won the coin toss yet!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Shank Missed Out On A Writing Award

We fully expected Shank to make this list, but it wasn't to be:
The Worst American Sportswriting Of 2015

As we’ve noted before, sportswriting tends to follow what you might call the Anna Karenina Principle. The good stuff—the stuff that makes year-end lists like Longreads’s and Richard Deitsch’s—is all, on a certain level, the same, similarly structured long profile after similarly structured long profile, all in one way or another tracing the actual workings that animate the world of superficial appearances. The worst is ... not. Every truly bad article and every truly bad post is a unique, delicate flower, blossoming in this harsh world despite its lack of redeeming qualities. So please, read on and bask in the unrepeatable, indescribable, mind-numbing awfulness of 2015’s worst sportswriting.
There's always next year!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Just How Dumb Is This Guy? - III

Alternative headline - The One Where Shank Finally Endorses Cheating!

Let's see if this blogger has this straight - it's not okay when this guy is alleged to have cheated, but it's perfectly fine to suggest throwing a shitload of basketball games in order to secure the services of...
We should consider the possibility of the Christmas blues setting in, right?

Just How Dumb Is This Guy? - II

It looks like Shank just gave us a new theme:

First point - Odell Beckham Jr. is being suspended for one game for multiple penalties in yesterday's game as well as taking a run at Panthers cornerback Josh Norman. Beckham has appealed this decision. Tom Brady was accused of complicity in allegedly deflating footballs before last year's AFC championship game with the Colts and faced a four game suspension, which was appealed, denied by the same man who ruled on the original suspension, then adjuicated in a Federal courtroom, where Judge Berman basically pulled down Roger Goodell's pants and exposed the massive deficiencies in both the examination of evidence and due process procedures inherent in the original ruling and the appeal process.

Second point - is Shank seriously suggesting a one game suspension for an attempt to injure Josh Norman is worthy of a Federal judge's intervention?

This blogger will go with Shank's historical propensity for trolling & stirring the pot; for him to suggest otherwise simply shows a staggering lack of perspective or a room temperature IQ.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

That's Original

Shank must be hung over if it took him this long into the game to uncork this inanity:

A tweet in response, keeping with the Christmas spirit:

UPDATE, AT 4:53 PM: Kirk Minihane appreciates Shank's pop culture arrival into more recent times:

Just How Dumb Is This Guy?

Ignore for a moment the endless juvenile nature of the subject matter at hand:

Aren't alleged professional writers obliged to be somewhat precise with words? The odds of winning a lottery are in the millions to one range, but it is not impossible to win a lottery. Conversely, winning coin tosses at a 75% rate translates to 4 to 1 odds, which makes this situation improbable, but not a 'statistical impossibility'. It's self-evident numbers are not Shank's strong suit.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Hall No, Shank Won't Go!

The CHB today whines about how the Hall of Fame was "more fun when it was all about baseball. Comparing Player A to Player B."

Our question: When did it stop being about that?

If anything, comparing what actually happened on, you know, the field, is more than ever about what took place between the white lines, since understanding the effects -- if any -- of what took place outside them isn't possible. But since Shank is stuck in the gravity of his own id, there's no other way to took at it.

On with the nitpicking!

On the subject of new candidate Trevor Hoffman, Shank says "saves are overrated, especially in the era in which Hoffman pitched." Give him Goose Gossage and Rollie Fingers, he says.
Except he didn't vote for Gossage, but he did for one-inning marvel Dennis Eckersley.

As for saves, if they were overrated then, they have always been overrated, since getting five or six outs really isn't that much harder than getting three. It'd be great to know whether Shank voted for Rollie Fingers in the 1981 MVP race, given he pitched all of 78 innings that year. Given who finished runner-up, I'll bet he did.

That said, saves are overrated, which makes some of the other arguments The CHB attempts even more nonsensical. Such as: "woe is [he who] values things like wins." He promptly insists he won't vote for Mike Mussina despite his 270 wins because "he always pitched for good teams."

Except that he didn't. I looked it up.

Mussina pitched for the Orioles for 10 seasons, from 1991 - 2000. During that time, Moose went 147-81 (a 65% winning percentage). The Orioles as a team were 926-812 (53%). Perhaps Shank stopped to consider that maybe the reason the O's were good was because they had Mussina? As for "always good teams," consider that in those 10 seasons, the O's finished below .500 five times. Nice try, though!

Moreover, his entire premise is a clear admission that wins are a byproduct of something far bigger than just "I pitched good." None of that kept him from voting for Jack Morris, a far inferior pitcher to Mussina, of course.

Moving on. Shank says he's not going to vote for players who he "thinks" cheated, yet he voted for Paul Molitor, who was a drug user.

He calls Alan Trammell a "PED backlash vote," which is downright comical given that Trammell was better than at least a dozen other shortstops who are in the Hall.

Here's the best part (isn't it always?): When he resorts to name-calling. Per usual, it's a shot at those who understand math (the "Bill James Blog Boys"); those guys who actually studied in class and went on to make some serious coin while also doing on the side what The CHB does for a living -- and doing it better than he ever could have dreamed.

Finally, the gist of the column was written in 2009:

2009: "It is one of the great privileges of being a baseball writer.
2015: "It’s still the greatest honor of membership in the vaunted Baseball Writers’ Association of America."

2009: "[Voting] has become a tremendous pain in the posterior."
2015: "Voting for the Hall of Fame ... was more fun when it was all about baseball."

The names may change, but the words remain the same.

Shank's Part-Time Job - Scaring Children

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

View from Above

Anyone recognize this place? And would you know if it has Internet in the basement?

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Always Tape Machine Recording

Had the displeasure to listen to Shank's weekly appearance on 'Zo and Bertrand at 11:00 this morning. What did he talk about during the first half hour, you ask? John Calipari. In other words, he rehashed his Sunday night column.

Not an original thought in his mind. Absolutely pathetic.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Clearing A Very Low Bar

Cal Up in Arms Over UMass Award

This is classic.

The CHB continues blasting the decision by UMass Amherst to honor former men's basketball coach John Calipari and no one cares!

This is not the first time Shank has whined about the pending feting. He made essentially the same argument back in March.

But it's better this time because when The CHB queries UMass president Marty Meehan about the move, the "sports buff and a Massachusetts lifer" completely shoots him down:
In the four months I’ve been on the job as president of the system, I haven’t got one complaint about this from the Amherst campus,’’ said Meehan. “The Amherst campus, the faculty, the dean, the students, they’re not shy. Calipari is very involved with UMass. He’s raised significant money for UMass. He’s contributed to UMass. And we’re a university that needs to get more people to come back and do that.
This is why the joke in j-school is that "dumb sportswriter" is redundant: The CHB has his skirt all tied up in knots over something that no one cared about 20 years ago and is even less (if possible) newsworthy today. It's just sports! It's a kid's game!

Everyone (except, apparently, Shaughnessy) knew Coach Cal was cheating long before the NCAA blew its whistle, and Dapper Dan would have known too, had he not been so busy losing bets and scamming the IRS.

Do you think The CHB feels remorse for asking Tom Werner for a job for his daughter, as has been rumored for years?

Do you believe the Elf on the Shelf is real?

Messing with Texans

Here's The CHB a couple days ago as the Patriots headed into a matchup with the Texans:
[T]he Patriots are a team on the way down. They have lost two in a row. The Texans, meanwhile, are 6-6, hungry, and serious. Patriot Nation is a little nervous about this one. Me, too. There will be no taunting from this space. The wounded, reeling Patriots are on the road against a legit team and fear losing a third consecutive game for the first time in 13 years.
And here's The CHB today, following last night's decisive Patriots victory:
Put your hand to your ear and listen: That clinking and clattering is the sound of Tomato Cans falling down on the Patriots’ path to Super Bowl 50 in Santa Clara, Calif.
In just two days, Shank's flip-flopping goes from unintentional constipation brought on by some serious ass-clenching to his typical a-hole boasting about Patriot/Super Bowl inevitability.

The absolute low-light of the column is when he mocks "the immortal Whitney Mercilus" (once again, it's a minority who is singled out) for missing a tackle on Rob Gronkowski: "Great idea having a linebacker try to cover Gronk."

Which goes to show what The CHB knows about football. (Nothing.)

Indeed, those teams who have attempted to cover Gronk with a defensive back end up peeling the unfortunate souls off his cleats in the end zone.

Yet had The CHB had looked past Mercilus' uniform number and knew anything about his actual experience, he would have correctly noted that a defensive lineman (Mercilus' position in college and before they signed 2012 overall first pick Jadeveon Clowney) caught Gronk from behind 40 yards from the line of scrimmage. That's not such a good thing.

Any chance The CHB will "parachute down from Planet Patriot and get in touch with reality" anytime soon?

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Whatever That's Supposed To Mean

Shank, at his incoherent worst:

Insults 'R Us

Douchebag Alert

Remember Shank's last column saying the Patriots are a team on the way down? He doesn't:

Bonus douchebaggery for the coin toss / game over mentions. He's so predictable.

Rewriting History - LXXV

Dear Pedro:

Remember that time I wrote a meritorious column about you? We're good now, right?

Your pal,


No Laughing Matter

In this week's installment of Patriots columns, Shank gleefully rejoices in his previous trolling efforts:
HOUSTON — We’ve had a lot of fun laughing at the Houston Texans in recent years.

Remember how this went down three years ago? The Texans were 11-1 and came to Foxborough wearing their letterman jackets for “Monday Night Football.” Houston wideout Andre Johnson said it was going to be the biggest game in franchise history. We openly mocked the Texans for their stupid hype of a regular-season game. The Patriots, in turn, mocked them on the field, running to a 21-0 lead in the first 19 minutes. It was 35-7 in the first minute of the fourth quarter. The final was 42-14. It was embarrassing for the Houston frauds.

Five weeks later, the Texans came back for a playoff game and it was the same drill. I wrote that this matchup represented the first time in league history that a team had back-to-back bye weeks to start the playoffs. Arian Foster was so offended he made the Globe column his Twitter avatar. The Texans insisted they deserved respect. We gave them none. The Patriots routed them again, 41-28.

How were we supposed to take the Texans seriously when they had Matt Schaub at quarterback, Fraidy Cat Gary Kubiak as head coach, and bumbling Wade Phillips as defensive coordinator?

Sure enough, a year later the Texans lost 14 consecutive games and everybody got fired.
"Hey - remember that time I wrote a column designed to antagonize an entire city? Good times, good times!"

With injuries hitting the New England Patriots hard going into the latter part of the season, Shank is singing a markedly different tune and is no longer calling opposing teams 'tomato cans':
Things feel different now as the Patriots prepare to play at NRG Stadium on Sunday night. Going into this meeting, the Patriots are a team on the way down. They have lost two in a row. The Texans, meanwhile, are 6-6, hungry, and serious. Patriot Nation is a little nervous about this one. Me, too. There will be no taunting from this space. The wounded, reeling Patriots are on the road against a legit team and fear losing a third consecutive game for the first time in 13 years.
Somehow, this blogger anticipates a) the Patriots winning the coin toss and b) Shank making a stupid tweet or two about it and the game already being over. Same crap, different week!

Catching Up Is Hard To Do - II

This is why Shank wins 'prestigious' awards - the Golden State Warriors came to town on Friday, with former LA Laker Luke Walton now working as an assistant coach for the Warriors. You know the drill by now - half of the column is a walk down Celtics memory lane, complete with multiple Larry Bird sightings.

Catching Up Is Hard To Do

So Shank wins an award from his fellow baseball writers:
Members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America recognized Shaughnessy for meritorious contributions to baseball writing during his career.
Meritorious contributions indeed! I'll let my co-blogger identify a few of Shank's meritorious contributions:
Would that be "tweaking" like when he called David Ortiz a sad sack of you-know-what? Was it tweaking when he called Carl Everett "the Ebola virus of the Boston clubhouse?" Or when he wrote “We have rejoiced in the retirement of Keith Foulke?” Would that be "exposing" when he wrote, "Why does America hate Barry Bonds so much? Is it because he's too good?" all while neglecting to mention Bonds' PED use for another five years. Was that exposing when he accused Manny Ramirez, the previous season's World Series MVP, of quitting on the team during a month where he put up a .930 OPS and 6 HRs in 24 games?
Let's not forget Shank's most meritorious contribution to baseball writing, the infamous 'Dirty Laundry' column, in which Shank acted as Larry Lucchino's mouthpiece (or Charles Steinberg's, take your pick) in order to trash then Red Sox GM Theo Epstein. This also explains why Shank has been persona non grata at Yawkey Way for the past decade.

This blogger is highly amused by the dichotomy of Shank winning a lifetime achievement award and at the same time being nearly constantly mentioned as one of the worst local sportswriters and / or one of it's most miserable members for covering a team he despises. (UPDATE - Remember Shank being the Most Hated Man in Boston? He can put that on the trophy mantle too!)

Maybe a certain former Boston Globe employee can explain this dichotomy to us?

UPDATE AT 2:05 PM- Yep, we're just piling on, just in case that former Boston Globe employee complains about an insufficient number of data points. When writing about departing or retiring Red Sox players, who can forget about the meritorious nature of the Pedro Martinez column, or a few Roger Clemens columns, or some Manny Ramirez columns, or the Nomar Garciaparra column, or calling Jose Offerman 'a piece of junk', or getting scooped by Yahoo Sports on the chicken & beer fiasco, or...


UPDATE II, AT 3:20 PM - The server error's been resolved!
Yeah. Much has changed since 2002 when I began doing this, but a world in which Dan Shaughnessy is honored by a sports hall of fame is not one which has any sort of grip on what people are interested in. When was the last time Shaughnessy actually wrote a baseball column that was of value? How does that translate to hall of fame worthiness?
But it seems now, almost constantly on the air, and more and more in print, that the focus is on making fans miserable. Whether it be mocking them as “fanboys,” attempting to diminish accomplishments, dreaming up doomsday scenarios for local teams, telling us how arrogant the greatest coach in NFL history is, or just the constant trolling, it is enough to make someone wonder just why they subject themselves to this.

It certainly has made me wonder. Why have something so toxic like that as part of your life? It’s not healthy. Toxic things come with a warning. They should be avoided. More and more, I’m avoiding toxic sports media altogether.
Dan Shaughnessy has recycled columns and taken the same cheap shots for 25 years, made a cottage industry out of a hokey “curse”and it now rewarded for it by the Baseball Hall of Fame?

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

How Do You Really Feel, Kirk?

I'm starting to like this guy!

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

DHL Dan - L (For Loser)

Shank passes on a column ripping the Patriots only to give us a Picked up Pieces column instead. It's like an early lump of coal in our collective Christmas stocking!

The column started out innocently enough, looking like Shank did his usual column preparation of 'sampling' local sports opinion and passing it off as his own. In this column, however, Shank writes something so phenomenally ignorant, wrong and flat-out stupid, it should settle for all time any argument about Shank having any editorial oversight whatsoever (emphasis mine):
The Patriots were cuffed around by the Giants and Bills and needed miracles to come up with two victories to get to 10-0. This is not a workable formula for success. Ordinarily, winning football games comes down to talent and execution, not the time-tested Patriot way of waiting for the other guy to fall down.

If they want to advance to the Super Bowl, the wounded Patriots can’t simply rely on the brilliance of Bill Belichick, the clutch play of Brady, and the abject mediocrity of the AFC. You actually have to be a good team.
Barely acknowledging the rash of Patriot injuries, it is truly incredible that any 'professional' sports writer can pen such drivel about a team who a) are arguably the best team in football, b) just happens to be the defending Super Bowl champions and 3) who have won 25 of their previous 33 games and assert that this team is bereft of talent and cannot execute plays. Coach Belichick has been preaching 'Do Your Job' for years and we're supposed to take the word of a Boston Globe sports columnist that they're not doing this?

Then again, maybe Shank's just trolling us again?
Not to go all Trent Dilfer on you, but how good are the Patriots right now? They have no running game and no deep threats. Their offensive line has been awful. The defense looked strong in midseason, but lately they can’t stop the run (certainly not without Dont’a Hightower) and they have little pass rush.
Funny how these things were never mentioned by Shank until they lost two games, isn't it?

That's enough idiocy for this blogger in this column; you masochists can read on...

Monday, December 07, 2015

The One Where Larry Bird Steals Shank's Lunch Money

This one had to hurt, Shank...
Despite injured hand, Larry Bird won $160 off Dan Shaughnessy in shooting contest
Larry was MVP in ’84, ’85, and ’86, and the height of his powers was ’85. He was on the cover of Time magazine and it was a big deal. That’s when he had the 60-point game in New Orleans against the Atlanta Hawks. So, we found out later he’d gotten in a barroom fight in downtown Boston, down by Faneuil Hall. It was a bar, I think it was called Chelsea’s. Larry had come to the defense of a teammate, or some issue, and doing the old-school Indiana thing he swung at a guy and he messed up his hand. And he was taping it at practice, and it was a very odd-looking kind of a web-taping, splitting his hand into two sets of fingers.
And then the cheap SOB had the nerve to try and expense it with the Globe:
HIMMELSBACH: So wait, you expensed the $160 that you lost in a shooting contest?

SHAUGHNESSY: Yes, and evidently the IRS frowns on the word ‘wager’ in expense accounts, (because it's a personal expense, maybe? - ed.) because it bounced back and they said ‘You cannot put ‘wager’ in an expense account.’ So I just made it eight $20 lunches with [Celtics center] Robert Parish. We just substituted.
Like you really need to know more than that about a person's character.

Larry Bird Watch - II

Larry Legend turns fifty-nine today. Will Shank do something to commemorate this historic occasion?

Sunday, December 06, 2015

Patriots Predictions - II

On a scale from 1 to 10, how scathing and vicious will Shank's next column be concerning the Patriots' loss to the Eagles tonight? How many second guesses will there be on a column he began to write just after Malcom Jenkins returned that pick 100 yards for the touchdown to make the score 28 - 14? And will Shank once again mention coach Belichick putting his hands on a female NFL referee?

Outrage Machine Ginned up

Shank's just doing his part to make a mountain out of a molehill, because that's what scumbags do:
The comments are what you'd expect - half of them sanctimoniously faking indignation and outrage, which has become the new American pastime. Just further proof that Twitter is largely a cesspool for idiots and whiners. Losers, all...

The Sun Rises In The East...

...and Shank continues to make dumb, juvenile tweets during a Patriots game:

Patriots Predictions

Will Shank insult us with blathering Twitter inanities about the Patriots winning the coin toss, or will we get a stern but predictable dire warning of the dreaded 'double score'?

No reason it can't be both - stay tuned!

Shank Needs A Dictionary

For two reasons - the first one's embarrassing enough; what's always bothered this blogger is his decades-long cavalier use of the word 'fraud' to describe people he doesn't like. We'll look forward to Shank's explanation, if he can ever be bothered to articulate it.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

No Price Too Low

The Red Sox have signed David Price, and The CHB is singing Glory, Glory, Hallelujah!

"Why quarrel with what the Red Sox will be paying Price if he ultimately gets hurt or falters in the final years of this contract?" he writes.

Oh yes, why indeed? Especially because the Royals -- you remember them? -- won the World Series the season after shedding their best pitcher.

Or perhaps because, just three months into their first season with the Red Sox, The CHB compared high priced free agents Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval to the "baseball version of Sidney Wicks and Curtis Rowe," two players who by the time they reached the Boston Celtics were known more for their attitude than their production.

The rewrites of history continue. Ben Cherington "failed." (Didn't the Red Sox win a World Series in 2013? I keep forgetting.) David Price is sensitive, but Manny Ramirez (the "diva") and Keith Foulke (whom upon his signing in 2003 The CHB wrote: "People in the A's front office think Keith Foulke made a mistake coming to Boston ... and some of the A's believe Foulke is too sensitive. I tend to agree.") aren't. The Boston farm system is overrated (the best player on the team in 22-year-old Mookie Betts; the AL Silver Slugger award winner as shortstop in 23-year-old Xander Bogaerts; the best defensive OF in baseball in 25-year-old Jackie Bradley Jr.; and enough prospects to land the best closer in baseball, but OK...).

And Shank, it's time to drop the "big bowl of awkward" cliche. That's twice in two months you've rolled it out, and we all know you stole it. Booyah!

The Hurst of Times

Aw, Shank, still crazy after all these years. There he is, dredging up the memories of 1986, and whining about -- of all things -- white collar jobs going to people with college degrees.

Wonder if he thinks any kid out of high school can replace him? Wonder if he knows a blind monkey could?

And in a piece ostensibly on Bruce Hurst, the ex Red Sox hurler who starred in the 86 World Series against the Mets, there are no fewer than four grafs about Roger Clemens.

P.S. Larry Bird sighting!