Thursday, November 17, 2011

Laughingstock of Baseball

This was the blog post tag assigned to the Best Team Ever by legendary baseball blog  But the embarrassing behavior coming from the Best Team Ever's organization will not stop.  I thought the thirteen-post rampage I went on throughout the month of October was going to put closure to this.  But the continued moves being made by clearly Larry Lucchino and to a lesser extent John Henry and Tom Werner is further solidification of the Best Team Ever's current position of the laughingstock of baseball.

Today, the following broke:

1.  Despite a second interview with Dale Sveum, the Best Team Ever sat with their thumbs up their rear ends instead of offering the managerial candidate a job.  Sveum took the job with the Cubs.
2.  Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports wrote that Sveum was the overwhelming choice of the baseball operations people, but was vetoed by ownership.  What a great way to usher in your new general manager than to have him screen out potential hires for one of the most important positions in the organization, then tell him to go and get his shine box.  Good job, Larry.  If this guy had any balls, he would bust out the gorilla suit immediately.  If you like justice, you would hope Cherington tells Lucchino to find another GM as well.  After all, Lucchino has John Henry, so he'll never walk alone.

The Rosenthal article said in as many words that Lebron, Liverpool, Fitzy, and Associates kicked Francona's ass out the door, made working conditions so unpleasant that the GM from Brookline ran out of the job not once but twice, and now, in the new GM's FIRST managerial decision, decides to not listen to him.  I don't understand why Roush Fenway Racing would so something like that.  Then again, NEITHER WILL MY READERS.

3.  The Sons of Maverick Carter have not only vetoed Cherington's first recommendation, virtually stripping him of all power, but have already spoken with Bobby Valentine.  The same cat who vehemently crushed their coaching staff for their handling of the Gyroball Kid and the same guy who more or less treated the Mets' on-field product like Joe Torre treated the arms of Scott Proctor, Tom Gordon, and Tanyon Sturtze:  Drove them right into the ground.

4.  Cherington and most of the baseball people are going to the Dominican Republic.  Therefore, the Disciples of Carmine very well may re-interview Valentine and, who knows, offer him a freaking job without the general manager actually in the room, region, or country!  I have a feeling the private jet only charters flights to Liverpool and Mark Teixeira's house only and doesn't stop by any countries where the primary language is anything but the Queen's English. 

The fact that these major baseball-related decisions are being made without the input of the baseball people is just further evidence that this ownership group prioritizes winning baseball games far lower than membership cards, concourse bricks, Sweet Caroline, Pocket Money, Sox Appeal, college GPAs approaching a gillion, income approaching 20% higher than the year before, Liverpool, lower luxury taxes overseas, NASCAR racing, the holes in Carl Edwards's car, Charlie Moore, Ernie Boch Jr. doing play-by-play, Maverick Carter, Phish concerts, rugby games, and at least the first three quarters of certain NBA playoff games.  I feel like this group values winning baseball games slightly more than it values performance in the fourth quarter of certain NBA games, because that has not seemed to be a priority either judging by the way #6 plays.  Talk all you want about George Steinbrenner; his meddling was borne from an intense desire to win.  John Henry, Larry Lucchino, and Tom Werner care about profit.

Speaking of which, Valentine is most certainly a Werner thing.  He provides dubious value at all when it comes to managing a baseball team (perhaps a bit of a hyperbole), but his real value corresponds with him being an animated character who will enhance the ratings of post-game press conferences on NESN!  Who cares what happens between 7:00 and 10:00 on game nights, it's all about what happens between 10:00 and 11:00.  Apparently the team will be in the market to hire a new booth babe with Heidi Watney moving on as well.  Great news for the 11th guy on the Lakers' bench.

5.  Sources tell Boston radio show hosts Andy Gresh and Scott Zolak that the source of the Bob Hohler article material was none other than Theo Epstein.  Interesting, especially considering that the article was reasonably critical of the former general manager and as recently as a few days ago said that the 2011 team was a bunch of "choir boys" compared to the beloved 2004 team, something counterintuitive to anything written in that article.  This is clearly Lucchino leaking the information to the Globe in the first place, saying that "there were a lot of articles in the Globe" in a smug, snarky way, denying it, and now throwing Theo under the bus for one very last final time.

6.  Sean McAdam and Peter Gammons have also started going after the Lebron Group for undermining the general manager and the Francona smear campaign (respectively).

I was thinking about the following when all this went down on this fine Thursday:  The Best Team Ever was a freaking mess when the idea for this blog came about in 2006.  They are in far, far worse shape now than they were five years ago.


Anonymous said...


I wasn't a huge fan of Dale Sveum, but that was based exclusively on his tenure as the Sox 3rd base coach. I know nothing about his ability as an actual manager. For what it's worth, if Theo signed him as a free agent per-se, I don't think Sox fans need to be too, too worried about it.

Still, if it's true that the GM and his advisers wanted Sveum and he slipped away that is a terrible start not only for them, but for their relationship with ownership. We may be well on our way towards more of the same action we've seen the past two seasons if this keeps up.

On Heidi Watney--as soon as I saw where she was headed I immediately thought she'd be getting filled by Shannon Brown or someone else of that ilk. I'm sure the two of us were not only ones to reach that conclusion.

--the Gunn

the gm at work said...


Someone said Ron Artest, but he's not the 11th man on the roster. Neither is Metta World Peace.

Can't wait for more of the same. Following the Red Sox over the last three years has been an absolute pleasure. Um, uh-huh.

I trust the baseball guys.

And a little nugget from the Boston Business Journal: Lucchino was named one of the top 50 influencial Bostonians. He had a favorite quote in there that you just can't make up:

"Nothing is often a good thing to do and always a brilliant thing to say."

Ross Kaplan said...

I'd be shocked if Boston hires Valentine or if they offer him the position, he'd take it. From his Mets days I remember him being the kind of outspoken manager who wouldn't take shit from the Boston media and tow the company line. Also, he's currently firmly entrenched with his ESPN analyst duties so why would he want to give up a comfy gig where he's probably earning decent money to deal with the stress of managing in Boston while potentially getting thrown under the bus by his employers.

ZWeiss said...

Can they just sell this team already?