Sunday, January 2, 2011

Texts From Last Night

For our first post of the new year, I'm just going to direct all you guys to an article posed as a legitimate article from NESN.com. Nevermind Sox Appeal, Pocket Money, or Employ the Owner's Wife, the three great programs that took chunks out of the Red Sox's regional sports network's legitimacy. It Eric Ortiz's January 1, 2011 that finished NESN off, just as December 6, 2006 stripped Theo Epstein of his legitimacy and November 4, 2010 stripped ownership of its legitimacy.

I don't even need to go into analysis to show how this article just takes it to a whole new level. The title takes care of itself. This is why this is going to be the easiest post of the year. By far.

2011 Red Sox Will Challenge 1927 Yankees for Title of Greatest Team in Major League History

A couple of the highlights:

"Look at the starting lineup...This lineup has it all. Good luck finding a hole from 1 to 7."
Right, like the 1 hitter who hit .192 in 18 games last year and has a career OPS of 92. Or the 6 hitter who shows up in June and is devoting most of his time trying to investigate why his steroid test showed up positive. Or the 7 hitter who is JD Drew.

"the 25-year-old [Saltalamacchia] could be ready for a breakout season"
or another year under .200.

"Youth, experience and versatility will ride the pine like lions waiting to hunt."
Yes, Mike Cameron and Jason Varitek are young.

"The Japanese right-hander is the only pitcher in the rotation who has never been an All-Star, but this could be the ear he ends that streak...While the Phillies might be the popular choice for the best rotation in baseball, don't be surprised if people are singing a different tune come October."
Career BB/9 of 4.3. 13-12 with an ERA close to 5 in the last two seasons. Why let facts stop us? Whee!

"Albers could be a diamond in the rough...Papelbon is pitching for a contract, so trust he will be ready to show he's far from washed up. Reliability and consistency...will be common words associated with this group."
Eric Ortiz has passed various members of the Albers family as the all-time leader in getting amped about a reliever with a 5.11 ERA!

"100 wins doesn't just appear plausible. It seems downright inevitable. So does a date with history." [This precedes rambling about the 116-win Mariners, 116-win Cubs, and 1927 Yankees.]

Two more points to make about this:
1. This guy went to Stanford. I no longer have any respect for a Stanford degree. Surely a writing degree, because phrases like "riding pine like lions waiting to hunt" are something we haven't seen since John Steinbeck. Somewhere, Mike Mussina's crying.
2. Happy new year, it's 1999 again. The era of the pink hat is over. The comments readers left Ortiz on this article ask if it's an April Fool's article, call for his job, ask how he got the job, and wonder if the guy snorted a kilo of cocaine on New Year's Eve. Red Sox fans are back, grounded in reality and skepticism that has normally been reserved for alongside the Schuylkill River over the past seven years. These guys know that this team is questionable, and the recent re-signing of Okajima just makes it worse.

Either way, this kind of nonsense deserves to be on Texts from Last Night alongside text messages involving Jello shots and marijuana bongs made out of Legos.

However, this humor inspired much joy in my living room, so maybe Tom Werner and NESN are ensuring that this article is as good as a World Series.

6 comments:

Patrick said...

we're on the same page here, as this was going to be the subject of my first post of 2011. well done.

this article is hysterical. the best part is the increasing degrees of ridiculousness. it goes from 100 wins being likely, to setting the all-time win record, to the greatest major league team of all time. never mind that the first sentence of the article points out that the red sox have won 100 or more games only 3 times in their 110 year history, and goes on to say that they haven't done so in 64 years. that's not to say that they won't do it this year, but if they are only doing it 2.7% of the time, and we know how difficult it is to just win 100 games, then how hard is it to set the all time win mark or be the best team ever? better yet, how hard is it to predict such a thing? you obviously can't take this article seriously, but i don't even know what you base such a hypothesis on. dv mentioned the comments - which are awesome - and one of the best one points out that magical, record breaking seasons just happen, they can't really be predicted.

the red sox have had a great offseason, no doubt about it. but the reaction out of new england has been over the top, even putting this article aside. i understand that part of this is that the red sox haven't really had a big offseason in recent years, so adding two big name players is going to generate extra excitement. but while they've added those two, they've lost vmart/beltre. an upgrade no doubt, but it's not like they are just building on what they already had without losing production. they've added an upside arm and a probability arm to a bullpen that was 8th worst in the league last year, and have the same rotation that finished in the bottom half in baseball. their 2011 season is going to be much more about bouncebacks from lackey and papelbon (or moving bard to closer) as well as beckett having another outlier season where he actually pitches well than either of their big ticket additions to the offense. they already had the second best offense in the league last year, and that was with injuries to youkilis and pedroia. if papelbon continues to close ineffectively, lackey is a league average pitcher, and josh beckett is as inconsistent as he has been for most of his career it's not going to matter as much what the new offensive additions do. they have to get better pitching. when you include daisuke they certainly have strength in numbers that somebody will bounce back, but it's not just like they need one or two guys between the rotation to be a little better. they really need a number of guys to step up. they are more than capable of doing so, but based on the last few years there are a lot of "ifs" on that pitching staff, and adding two impact bats doesn't make those ifs any more likely to succeed.

Patrick said...

*they a number of guys between the rotation and bullpen to step up. basically, adding gonzalez and crawford were great moves, moves that the red sox needed to make as we discussed. impact players. but the excitement over them is overshadowing that their pitching has been in the bottom half of baseball the last two seasons, and that, not the offense, is what has been holding them back. if some guys pitch better, they are going to be one of the toughest teams in the game. if they get more of what they've gotten the last two years, they are probably going to get results similar to what they've gotten the last two years, considering they were 2nd and 3rd in the game in runs the last two years respectively. and there's nothing wrong with that, they picked up a wild card and knocked on the door despite injuries in those two seasons. but they won't be the elite team everyone is talking about unless they get better pitching.

TimC said...

Credit where credit is due: Beckett will exceed six wins.

Actually, wait, let me think it over. Anyway, great start to 2011.

Anonymous said...

DV

A few things here--first, this is a NESN article. Of course it's going to be outrageously biased. It's supposed to be. The Sox own NESN, they have an agenda, and they're going to push it. You don't expect to hear Don Orsillo crushing JD Drew on the air, so you shouldn't expect much more from the staff writers at NESN.com.

Also, I remember a time when a few jerk-offs in my year held a "Funeral For America" in November of 2004. And I still have a lot of respect for a Colby degree. I think we should cut Stanford a little slack.

Lastly, as for the substance of the article itself, of course it's ridiculous. The Sox are going to be a good team this year. They will be better than last year (provided everyone stays healthy). But will they be one of the greatest teams ever? Probably not. The reality is that the likelihood that ANY team in ANY year will be one of the all-time greats is low, so the odds are even lower for one particular team. I'd just be happy if this team was as good as the 2007 Red Sox.

--the Gunn

Ross Kaplan said...

Perhaps even funnier than this article was the article linked at the top of the page "Bobby Jenks' Early Off-Field Woes, Abysmal Professional Debut Couldn't Smother His Dreams." That's not at all an ominous sign of how that kind of pitcher will do when thrown into the baseball crucible that is Boston.

Gunn: It's one thing to be a hired a mouthpiece, but it's a totally different story when you're delusional. Yankees/YES.com always have glowing articles of players giving back to the community and all that good stuff, but I don't recall anyone ever writing that Brett Gardner was the second coming of Rickey Henderson.

the gm at work said...

PF,

It's been a long time since an article this asinine has sent shock waves up and down the eastern seaboard. Maybe not since John Tomase decided to run his mouth about the Patriots the day of the Super Bowl. You can just sense the author getting more and more hyped-up on Kool-Aid as the article progresses. Not to say that in the 1,500 articles on this blog neither of us have ever done that. But we don't write for NESN.com. The fact that you emailed me asking if you could write about the article - while I was writing about it - speaks for itself.

Are you saying that against a left-handed pitcher, there's a chance the Red Sox get three-hit? No way. They're going to score eight runs a game. THAT'S why Josh Beckett is going to win more than six games. Either that or because 2007 is the REAL Josh Beckett.

Gunn, I think Remy crushed Drew adequately after instinct took over that Saturday night in Tampa. This is well above and beyond not saying anything negative.

The Funeral for America, the Darfur "Speak-Out," and the recent "sit-in" phenomenon have depreciated our Colby degrees. Opinion, not fact.

Ross, EARLY off-field woes? Some of the things going back and forth with the White Sox are not very nice.