Monday, June 29, 2015

Positive Red Sox Tweets, By Dan Shaughnessy

You know you hate the Red Sox (or you're just a miserable douchebag) when you feel the need to point out...

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Flipping for the Sox

The CHB yet once again reminds us that the Red Sox are playing poorly and have no chance this year and is furious that the management won't admit as much.

One would think someone who has written on this topic for as many years as Shank would know by now that 9 games out in June is not a death sentence. Remember '78? That was a 14 game comeback that began in July.

And what's remarkable is that he kind of does(!), as a few grafs down he writes about the Sox going 40-15 following a "particularly animated discussion" between Sox president Larry Lucchino and then manager Terry Francona in the World Series championship year of 2004. So we have a situation where the Sox -- per Shank -- can't win, even though history shows they have.

Here's where Shank really gets stupid: "Some of us are comparing the Hanley-Pablo signings to the Gonzalez-Crawford acquisitions before 2011. You got away from that philosophy, now it feels like you’ve flipped back."

Well, lo and behold, it was none other than The CHB who just last October insisted the "Red Sox can't sign Sandoval fast enough," and was still singing his praises in February called him a player who can "hit when it matters most." Who's the flip-flopper now?

Most absurdly of all, he asks whether the World Series win in 2013 somehow negatively affected the franchise. Are you kidding? Has the bar been set so high that three World Series wins in 10 seasons is now no longer good enough?

And once again The CHB is complaining about the stats guys, never stopping to realize that every team in the major leagues employs an army of statisticians, including favorite sons Giants, who don't make a move without getting the OK from Yesh Goldfarb (seriously, that's his name).

The CHB: Looking more anachronistic by the day.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Stakes Are High, And So Am I

Well, someone had to work in the Ted Nugent reference!

On the scene from New York City, Shank has been writing this here column for some time now.
NEW YORK — In 1987, former US Secretary of Labor Raymond Donovan was tried on charges of fraud and grand larceny. When the former Reagan cabinet member was acquitted by a Bronx County jury after an eight-month trial, Donovan famously asked, “Which office do I go to to get my reputation back?’’

On Tuesday at 9:09 a.m., Tom Brady went to a basement conference room at the NFL’s offices at 345 Park Avenue and testified under oath . . . in an attempt to get his reputation back.

It might take days, weeks, months, or even years for Brady to remove the tarnish from his golden résumé. Or he might never return to the lofty perch. He might instead be remembered as a champion . . . and a cheater.

It’s still hard to believe we are here.
No it's not, you disingenuous bastard - you've been doing everything you can to insure this story remains in the news. Why travel to New York City to cover this hearing if that's not your goal here?
In years to come, there will be considerable debate regarding strategic blunders, arrogance, coverups, lawyering up, and defiance on the part of the New England Patriots. What is in dispute in New York this week are Brady’s reputation and his legacy.
Funny - it looks like there's been plenty of 'considerable debate' already, and it looks like the actual dispute will be centered around the Wells Report, which determined Brady was 'generally aware' of the deflated footballs. The AEI report casts significant doubt about the Wells Report's determination that the balls were underinflated. So, if you go from 'generally aware' to 'not aware' and / or you go from 'underinflated' to 'not (intentionally) deflated', that would present grounds for nullifying the suspension.
I doubt there was much talk about the “science” once the parties got into the basement conference room. PSI and AEI are not the issue now.
Speculation - overruled!
The presence of Wells at Tuesday’s session was interesting. Wells has been taking a beating since his 243-page report was released, and the veteran lawyer no doubt was eager to get into a room with Brady and hear some new information. (Prepare for some leaks. According to ESPN, there were 40 people in the room, and that means lots of loose lips.)
So, if Wells has been 'taking a beating, it stands to reason that his report will be subject to further beatings, right? This is what lawyers do, Shank - create and / or establish reasonable doubt (at a reasonable price!).

They Said Galileo Was Wrong, Too

Eminent physicist Albert Einstein Dan Shaughnessy on reports ripping the Wells Report apart:

Burn the heretic!

Tom Brady Watch

The Globe duo of Shank & Ben Volin are covering today's showdown between Roger Goodell and Tom Brady, liveblogging it.

Monday, June 22, 2015


If it's the Monday before Tom Brady's showdown with Roger Goodell, it's the perfect time for another installment of Shank's random musings.

The only thing worth noting with this column - his two largest paragraphs are devoted to yet more criticism of the Red Sox and the Patriots, not including certain other paragraphs. Shocking, I know...

Friday, June 19, 2015


Former Red Sox great Carl Yastrzemski makes one of his rare trips to Fenway Park, so we get a civil column from Shank.
Folks in the Fenway Park tour group had no way of knowing that there was greatness behind the wheel of the Ford Expedition in the dark underbelly of the ancient ballpark.

How could they possibly have known? They were an assortment of tourists from New Hampshire, Virginia, Texas — even a few from France. They wore Red Sox jerseys, had cameras in their hands, and seemed to be enjoying their discovery walk under the stands behind home plate.

Suddenly, a couple of Fenway security people asked the folks to step aside and make some room in the cramped space. A silver SUV was wedged between a couple of the load-bearing beams in the dark concourse and the vehicle was attempting to back up, pivot, and exit from the bowels of Fenway.

And so the tourists made room and the SUV maneuvered its way out of Fenway Park with precision and ease.

“Pretty good, huh?’’ said the smiling driver, Carl Yastrzemski, as he turned onto Yawkey Way. “I still got it.’’

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Sarcasm Noted

The Red Sox win a game, which motivates Shank to write an insincere column of praise for the team.
You don’t see a lot of 4:05 p.m. starting times on weekdays during the school year at major league ballparks.

We had one at Fenway on Tuesday, and it was a day of little miracles.

Start with the final score. The sorry Red Sox beat the Atlanta Braves, 9-4.

That’s right, boys and girls . . . the last-place Red Sox won a baseball game. It was the Sox’ first victory since June 7, snapping a string of seven consecutive painful losses.
Nothing better than a Globe columnist and his condescending, patronizing attitude!

And what's a Red Sox column without a mention of Patriots coach Bill Belichick?
The afternoon started strangely when, while the Sox were arriving at the ballpark, word leaked that the vaunted St. Louis Cardinals are in a heap of trouble with the FBI and MLB because they allegedly hacked the Houston Astros’ database. Inevitable comparisons with the Patriots and Deflategate surfaced immediately, and Twitter trolls had a field day when a photo surfaced of Bill Belichick wearing a Cardinals jersey.

It is well known that Belichick is friendly with former Cardinals manager Tony La Russa and it was impossible to avoid the irony and the oddity of the respective scandals. Clearly one is nothing like the other and it’s totally unfair to infer any linkage, but it was amusing nonetheless.
One column, shots taken at the Red Sox & the Patriots - it's a twofer!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Bash Brother

The only thing Shank likes doing more than shitting on the New England Patriots is shitting on the Boston Red Sox, complete with a childish Dustin Pedroia insult.
Fenway Park was the place to be Monday afternoon. The moribund Red Sox held yet another team meeting (what’s next? exorcism? human sacrifice?), Dustin Pedroia came out with tiny elbows flying, and manager John Farrell faced a firing squad that was downright Pitinoesque.

After staggering through one of the worst weekends in the long history of the franchise — getting swept by the Blue Jays in spectacular fashion and stretching their losing streak to six games — the last-place Sox arrived at the ballpark in mid-afternoon and immediately held the latest in a string of team meetings. These guys have more meetings than the UN Security Council.

The carnivorous Boston media surrounded Pedroia’s locker when he emerged from the meeting just after 4 p.m., and the de facto captain of the SS John Henry indicated that the fellows had identified their problem and agreed on a solution to make things better.
Certain paragraphs tend to jumpout at the reader:
Pretty true. The great Leigh Montville said it to me in 1982, and I’ve been saying it ever since: When good things happen, we write good things. When bad things happen, we write bad things.
Who's he kidding with that nonsense?

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Feel The Excitement!

Looks like they couldn't find anybody else to be the fifth wheel...

UPDATE, at 3:20 PM - Judging from that picture, it looks like Shank's turning into the Gray Jheri Curl...

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Another Recycled Column

Shank takes a look at his 'favorite' Red Sox player, David Ortiz, and notices his low levels of production in 2015.
BALTIMORE — It’s almost always like this at the end. Not many baseball players retire at the top of their game. Sandy Koufax walked away at the age of 30 after winning 27 games in 1966, but he’s in a small club. More typically, there’s a gradual diminishment of skills, some reduction of regular appearances, and finally a moment when a guy gets politely nudged into retirement or released.

And so again we wonder if we are seeing the final days of David Ortiz.

Ortiz turns 40 in November. He is hitting .219 with 6 homers and 21 RBIs on June 9. He is batting .114 against lefthanders and has gone 17 games (66 at-bats) without hitting a home run, hitting .169 over those 17 games.
Shank's been writing the 'is it over for Big Papi?' column for at least three years now; eventually he'll be right.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Polar Opposites

Leave it to Shank to watch Eduardo Rodriguez pitch a gem, then have the Red Sox lose the game 1 - 0, write a positive column about Rodriguez, then write a negative tweet about the 1 - 0 result:

A Brief Michael Felger Rant

I was checking out this post at fellow site Boston Media Sports Watch and, on a whim, decided to respond to this snippet with a mini-rant in their comments section. I know this goes against the grain of being a site devoted to the Red Jheri Curl, but it's like this - Shaughnessy, Felger, Borges & Massarotti are the Mount Rushmore of Boston Sports Media Assholes, so I'm using a mulligan here.

I generally like Michael Felger - he's entertaining, funny, very knowledgeable and, yes, a Grade A Asshole (and psychopath, from what I heard secondhand from one of his old neighbors in Framingham). This past Monday afternoon, however, marked a turning point for me where I just had to turn off his show as it grated on me so god damned bad. I'm not sure I view / listen to Felger & Mazz the same way anymore because of it. Boston radio in general has been a real shitshow the past five years, for me because of the losses of WBCN and WFNX and the quality of other radio stations is simply not there, in my opinion. I don't know if this Felger thing below is just another example of that continuing decline in quality, but I suspect it is. I suppose that remains to be seen / heard.

And no, I wasn't boozin' when I wrote this rant. That's the surprising part!

Now, onto the rant!

Michael Felger hates the NBA so much, he can simultaneously trash the Warriors, Steph Curry and LeBron James all at the same time. THAT’s talent.

I've had the displeasure of reading that f*n prick Shaughnessy from Day 1 in 1981. I stopped buying the Boston Globe in 1995 solely because of that f*n prick Shaughnessy, and the taking over primary blogging duties at DSW in September of 2009, so I thought all these years of exposure to unrelenting negativity and hostility would have left me prepared / inoculated for that full solar flare blast from Felger & Massarotti when I tuned in on Monday to get their take on that Game 2 of the NBA finals.

Nope - not even close! I might as well have been a test dummy on one of those islands in the Pacific when they tested the first hydrogen bomb - I was instantly vaporized by Felger's blast of unrelenting negativity and hostility, and Mazz chiming in was just getting thrown by the blast's shock wave. I turned it off in about four or five minutes.

I have managed to recover from that beating, and since I'm on the road at the time they kick off in about twelve hours from now, I'll see if my brain can withstand another dose of Michael Felger Grade A radiation. Should be fun!

Just had to get that off my chest - I picked the wrong week to give up booze...

(crossposted on Boston Sports Media Watch)

They Owed Us One

Shank sure has an irritating way of starting one of his once-in-a-blue-moon positive columns about a Red Sox player.
BALTIMORE — Anybody remember the Jeff Bagwell deal?

They have one like that here in Baltimore now. Eduardo Rodriguez has a chance to become Dan Duquette’s Jeff Bagwell.

Red Sox fans over the age of 35 know what we are talking about. In 1990, lovable Lou Gorman swapped Sox infield prospect Jeff Bagwell for a journeyman pitcher named Larry Andersen. Andersen was a funny dude who used to attach sunflower seeds to his face. He pitched 22 innings of pretty good relief for the 1990 Sox and the Sox won the AL East by two games. Then they were swept by Oakland in the ALCS.

Bagwell went on to hit 449 home runs with a .297 lifetime batting average. He won a Gold Glove. He was National League MVP in 1994. In 2002, fans responding to an ESPN poll voted the Bagwell-Andersen deal as the second worst in baseball history, trailing only Babe Ruth-to-the-Yankees-for-cash.
Just have to rub our noses in it, doesn't he?

Well, now the shoe may be on the other foot:
The Orioles last summer gave the Red Sox Rodriguez in exchange for Andrew Miller at the trading deadline. Miller pitched very well for Baltimore the rest of the way. The Orioles won the American League East by 12 games but were taken out of the playoffs by the Kansas City Royals in the ALCS. Like Andersen, Miller immediately signed with another team.

Eduardo Rodriguez threw six shutout innings, adding to what has been a brilliant introduction to the majors.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox have a guy who looks like one of the best young pitchers in baseball. The 22-year-old Rodriguez was positively dazzling in his first two big league starts, going 2-0, allowing only one run in 14⅔ innings. He walked four and struck out 14. He worked quickly. He immediately made himself the darling of the fandom.
Does anyone else think John Henry pulled Shank into his office and said "Humor me - try writing one damn positive column about the Red Sox!", or is this just a coincidence?

Exit question - isn't the aforementioned Jeff Bagwell one of the players not on Shank's 2013 Hall of Fame ballot because he 'suspects' him of using PED's back in the day? (Answer - why, yes he is!)

Monday, June 08, 2015

Swich Hitting

What's this - a halfway positive Red Sox story from Shank?
It was the best inning of the season. It was the best game of the season. It was a seven-run, eight-hit frame, starting with “Sweet Caroline,’’ and ending after the Red Sox greeted Oakland’s fifth pitcher of the inning with “Everything Is Awesome.’’

Stop the presses, people. Trailing, 4-0, in the eighth, the beleaguered, much-buffeted Red Sox scored seven times in the home half of the inning and beat the Triple A’s, 7-4, Sunday at sunny Fenway Park.

It was a breakthrough day in every way. The Sox had been 1-26 in games in which they trailed after seven innings. They had not won three straight since April 9-11. The victory gave the Sons of John Farrell a three-game winning streak and kept them out of the cellar of the American League East by a few percentage points.


Upstairs in the press box, the sad stories and obits were being prepared.
So, Shank had his negative column mostly written, then had to throw it away to write this one? Couldn't happen to a nicer guy...

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Shank On Boston 2024, Part IV

Shank's been having quite a blast these past few weeks, from DeflateGate to the epic suck that so far has been the 2015 Boston Red Sox season. He now half rewrites the same No To Boston 2024 column for the third, or fourth, or even fifth time. In all this excitement, I can barely keep count myself!
We need a volcano.

The 1908 Summer Olympic Games were originally scheduled to be held in Rome. The Rome 1908 committee (I believe it was fronted by Stephano Pagliuca and Giovanni Fish) secured the bid for the IV Olympiad and everything was all set until Mount Vesuvius erupted on April 7, 1906, burying Rome and Pompeii in volcanic ash. The IOC relocated the Olympic Games to London.

At this hour, Boston needs some molten lava to stop the madness around the 2024 Olympic bid.

In six short months, Boston 2024 has become a punchline. Someday folks will look back at this misguided effort and compare it to “Gigli,” the PT Cruiser, and Google Glass . . . one more bad idea from the early part of the 21st century. Boston 2024 needs to be put out of its misery. The sooner the better.
Here's an interesting tidbit:
Still, the folks running Boston 2024 don’t seem to like us. Last Monday they bailed on meeting with the Globe’s editorial board because they did not want news people attending the meeting (on an off-the-record-basis), which had been planned for two weeks.
That tells you one or two things - the Boston 2024 organizers don't want you to know certain things, and from that, you shouldn't trust them as far as you can throw them.

As a reminder, this is one issue where DSW agrees with Shank. Read the rest of the column for other interesting nuggets.

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Shank Unloads

Shank finally gets around to penning his magnum opus on the 2015 Boston Red Sox.
The Red Sox are a myth, and the sooner folks understand this, the sooner ownership will be forced to address the hard truth.

The myth of the Sox is that they are some kind of perennial playoff contender. You know . . . three championships in 10 years.
Well, they are tied with the San Francisco Giants with three World Series championships during that stretch. Using that same compelling 'logic', are the Giants a myth of a perennial playoff contender? No matter - it counts for squat in Shank's book.
Swell. But despite the hype, the highest prices in baseball, and the $200 million payroll (not exactly! -ed), the Sox are no longer legitimate contenders. They are not a good team and they have not been a good team for quite some time.
Wake up, people. Your baseball team is not smarter than all the other teams. Your farm system is not the best in the majors.
Your Red Sox are an aggregate 31 games under .500 (267-298) since Sept. 1, 2011.
Why does Shank continue to use this misleading starting point, ignoring their 83-52 record from Opening Day 2011 to Sept. 1, 2011? Because he's a relentlessly negative asshole, that's why.

You knew this rant of his was coming; we just had to wait for Shank's Deflategate erection to subside.

Ok, that's another visual y'all could do without. Sorry!

Monday, June 01, 2015

Tweets Lacking In Self-Awareness, By Dan Shaughnessy

Ever stop to ask 'why', Shank?

Maybe You Should Move There

Here's Shank writing about the NBA Finals, jumping on the Cleveland bandwagon:
Go Cleveland. Go Cavaliers. Go LeBron.

It’s the only way to go.

The NBA Finals start Thursday, and unless you are a fan of the Golden State Warriors, or perhaps a fan of Steph Curry’s adorable 2-year-old daughter, you simply must root for the Cavs.

Sorry, I know many of you will find it hard to cheer for LeBron James. He’s a little full of himself, he has been a Celtics rival for many years, and he inspires a lot of irrational hatred for a guy who never really has done anything offensive other than stage an ill-conceived media event with Jim Gray.
'Ill-conceived' is Shank speak for 'convenient memory lapse':
“Despicable Me.’’

Starring LeBron James, ESPN, Jim Gray, and the Miami Heat.

All despicable.

It’s been more than 36 hours since “The Decision’’ and I’m still nauseous.

Truly, has there ever been a more hideous sports-related hour than what we saw Thursday night?

It’s hard to know where to start. We had MeBron speaking of himself in the third person and saying, “I’m going to take my talents to South Beach.’’ We had ESPN lying to us about at what point MeBron would announce his move, then morphing into game-show mode. We had Gray forever forfeiting all semblance of integrity, taunting America (particularly Clevelanders) by intentionally delaying the only question we wanted him to ask. And now we have the Miami Heat — a veritable team of A-Rods, the team we will root against in every game as long as LeBron, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh are together.

Despicable. All of them.
This column's his makeup call for trolling Cleveland a few months ago, nothing more.