Wednesday, February 22, 2006

M-M-M-Manny and the Soxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx....

Pitchers and catchers have reported for spring training for the 2006 season, with position players filtering in this week. That is, unless your name is Manny Ramirez. Ramirez has been given until March 1st to report to the team's training facility in Florida, a day before he is scheduled to join the Dominican team for the World Baseball Classic. While all his teammates are in camp already, Manny has been given permission to join the team late because he is "in Florida completing an extensive training regimen, and is prepared to have an exceptional season.” Does that first part sound like Manny to anyone else? I didn't think so. It is a known fact that Manny works very hard at his hitting, but he has never been known to be the most phycially fit player on the team. I seriously doubt he is undergoing extensive training for the season. That being said, I have no idea why he isn't in camp. Maybe he won't ever show up, forcing the Sox to trade him or he will sit out. Nobody knows what is going with Manny; not God, not his teammates, probably not his wife and definately not himself.

Manny being absent from spring training actually gives me an opportunity to talk about something I despise...The Boston Media. A lot is made about this group of haggard writers, overweight radio hosts, and ridiculous commentators. Boston has a bad reputation as being a tough place to play, because of all the pressure, and deservingly so. The big misconception is that the fans have alot to do with it. To me, that is not the case, and here is why. The fans who put pressure on the players are not always true fans. There are alot of people who come to Boston that may have never been Sox fans, but they are now. They put on the radio and hear the guys bashing Keith Foulke, and the fans follow suite because they don't know any better. True Red Sox fans are cynical, but they never try to hurt the team, or hate for the sake of hating. I have been watching almost every game in every season since high school, and before that I watched a lot of games. I used to get mad when Mark Belhorn struck out all the time, or Renteria made an error last year. But it ended at that. Radio shows and internet sites drag it out and want blood for these mistakes. That is where the problem lies.

At any time of any day, if you are in Boston you can find news on the Red Sox. It's almost an up-to-the-minute soap opera. The people bringing you the news are part of the old group of Sox fans; the cynical, out of touch complainers who fill the airwaves and pages with negative views of the Sox. Herald writer Steve Buckley is at the top of my list. This moron runs his mouth and intenionally writes abrasive articles about the Sox, whether in season or out. I believe he does this to boost his guest television appearances, and to make a name for himself. There are too many loudmouths in this town who feel their opinion rules, or is the voice of the people.
Another place you will find this sort of person is on WEEI, specifically what is known as The Big Show. I'm not sure if the show is named as such because every guy in the studio takes up two chairs, or that they think their show is a big deal. I realize it gets a lot of listeners, but its like the situation with Sportscenter...what other options do you have? If you are in the car on the way home and want to hear something about the Red Sox, thats where you go. Glenn Ordway and Pete Sheppard seem to be the ring leaders, the ones who run the show. I want an installment of The Big Show broadcast on t.v., because this is what you would see: five fat middled-aged men, trying to talk louder than the next guy, all trying to voice their negative opinions on that day's topic. They have segments where they take calls, but don't be fooled only exist to be laughed at, ridiculed, and looked down upon by these has-been hosts and no-talent contributers. Also, don't even try to make a good point, because when that happens shit really hits the fan. Argue against what they are saying during the show, and they just start talking over you while you are still talking. I guess the prevailing thought is, he who talks loudest is right. Then they dismiss the caller like they don't know anything, make fun of him for a few, then keep the show rolling onto the next sap. I am putting the most of the blame for Boston's negative media squarely on the husky shoulders of these two slugs, and anyone who contributes to their show.

Back to Buckley. He writes for the sports section of the Herald. This guy is garbage. I read the Boston Herald, and I can only think of one article I didn't hate by him. I don't even remember what it was about, just to show the quality of this guy's work. Also, he thinks he is funny and clever when hes not. His response to Manny being late for spring training is that he does it because he thinks its funny to fuck with management. He says that the Sox management is lying for Ramirez, which is probably true, but then goes on to say..."...and they lie. They lie for Manny Ramirez, sitting at home watching it all get replayed on 'SportsCenter' and laughing so hard that his milk starts coming out of his nose." I seriously doubt this is the case, and since it isn't funny, I am led to believe that Steve Buckley is a functional idiot. He thinks by putting a hard edge to his writing that he will enhance his personal popularity. Nobody gives a shit about him, he's just a writer, and a shitty one at that. Hey, Buckley, if you ever see this, I would rather read a novel written by my 5 year old cousin based the intricacies of the fuedal system in ancient Japan than to read your articles. Keep up the shitty work, maybe soon your editor will realize your words poison every eye that view them. Hopefully there are more people like me who see the word "Buckley" and your ugly mug next to an article and immediately turn the page.

So I got off track tearing up a writer and the morning radio show. I also should mention my growing contempt for Jerry Remy, yes the Rem-Dawg or as he has become over the past two years, Whore-Dog. Hey Remy, do they SELL OUT at your concession stand on Yawkey Way? Have you SOLD OUT of Rem Dawg shirts on your website? I think you get the point. This guy went from being the color guy to hawking any and everything he can put his name on. It's pretty pathetic, but thats all I will mention. I am talking about the media, the negative media, and Jerry isn't too negative. But I had to make my thoughts on him known.

The final piece of this sad puzzle is the internet. I like going to for one reason; because they collect every Sox article written during the day and post it or a link to it on their site. That is where my love for this site ends. I have sent several emails to the webmaster of this site asking for clarifacation on why they continue to function the way they do. The site would be great if it would stick to the news on the Red Sox. Instead, I open the page and find that someone has changed the words to Green Day's song "Time of Your Life" to make fun of Johnny Damon. The title of that song is also Good Riddence, which is a good indicator of the media around here. A day after Damon signed with the Yankees, Good Riddence. Thanks for the championship you long haired freak, now get the fuck out of town. I have expressed my views on Damon already in a previous post, but to attack the guy hours after he leaves town, totally forgetting what he has done in the past, is irresponsible. But it feeds the public opinion.

There is a sampling of the Boston media. Maybe it would help people who don't live around here to get a glimpse of what really goes on. The media here is suffocating, and every single person covering the Sox in this town has his own agenda in mind. The main goal of a sportswriter should be to report the news and give a responsible opinion. Boston sports writers are adept at taking a quote or an action, and turning it into a huge story...or at least trying to. By showing examples from the print, television, and online media, I have provided a strong basis of support for my feeling that the media here is poison.
This brings me back to Manny Ramirez. It is my opinion that all the extra curricular stuff he gets involved in is just immaturity. The man is 32 years old, he isn't going to all of a sudden start acting normal; he has had over thirty years to do that. So Boston, MY stance on Manny is, enjoy him while you can. It's only a matter of time before this guy gets traded, and it will be a sad day for Boston regardless of your opinion of him. Whether you hate him or love him, there is one underlying fact contributing to his time here: Manny Ramirez is one of the greatest righty hitters in the history of baseball. Last year some felt he had a slow year with the bat: he hit 45 HRs and had 144 RBI. With a .314 career average, a .409 career on-base percentage, and he will reach 500 HR's by the end of next season. If we were discussing any other player, he would have been gone from the team a long time ago. Can you imagine if Adam Hyzdu pulled this shit?ButManny is a special hitter, and this is a special case. Put it this way; after all the shit he has done, all the boneheaded decisions and his antics, the Sox still won't trade him...he is that good.

I'm calling for all the sports media in Boston to make a decision; stick with Manny or don't. You can't sing his praises for going 4-4 with 2 Hr's if you are goign to destroy him the next day for being late for a meeting. In an ideal world, the best players have the best habits, and make the best decisions. But in an ideal world, I would own an island and be married to . Sometimes you just have to take life as it is, and that is how we must treat Manny. He might not be on time, he might daydream in the field, and he might request a trade every few months. But every night at 7pm during the summer I thank God that I get to watch Manny Ramirez swing a baseball bat.

So to all you Steve Buckley's out there, to the Big Show crew, the perps on bostondirtdogs, listen up: Nobody cares about YOU, nobody tunes in or reads an article or visits the website because of YOU. YOU have the privelage of working in Boston and the honor of covering the Red Sox. That is where you're 15 minutes of fame ends. If you did your job the right way and stopped trying to make everything a bigger deal than it is, things might be different in this town. Manny might stop requesting trades and players might not want to leave because they lack privacy. Who knows how many free agents over the years have went elsewhere because of Boston's reputation. Even a World Series couldn't shut you assholes up.


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