(Because of absolute despondency over the collapse of our beloved Phillies, I may have to refrain from writing about the Fightins for awhile. Just kidding. But it is the offseason, which means I give myself permission to write about teams other than the Phillies and sometimes, things other than baseball. Enjoy. Or don’t. I don’t care. Because when the Phillies lost, I turned into a hollow shell of hate and apathy….)
So the Red Sox had an historical collapse and missed the playoffs.
Anytime the Red Sox or the Yankees flame out, I’m happy. But the Boston misery didn’t end in September. The offseason hasn’t been kind to the Red Sox either. First, Tito Francona and the Sox “mutually agreed” to part ways. Yesterday, it came out that wonder kid general manager Theo the Great is packing up and heading to Chicago. And today, a front page report on espn.com partially blames Francona’s failing marriage and pain-killer addiction for the Red Sox 2011 debacle, at least according to a “team source” that flapped his gums to the Boston Globe.
It’s always good to see organizations (that aren’t in Philadelphia) fall apart at the seams. I understand why Tito wants to leave. I can even understand why Theo wants to leave. But why are “team sources” blasting Francona to the local media? Unless this is a personal thing between Francona and the source, it seems absurd that any member of an organization would start drug dependence rumors on a departing manager, especially one as successful as Francona. I could see if this was Phillies era Francona. Those teams consistently sucked. Hell, even Rich Kotite and Ray Rhodes left this town without “drug dependence” allegations.
The manager’s out. The GM’s leaving. And the inmates are running the asylum in Boston.
But what might be worse than accusing an ex-manager of abusing pain medicine, is claiming that it was at least partially responsible for the team’s poor play. From the article, “team sources also had concerns that Francona's performance may have been affected by his use of pain medication.” So drugs = poor Francona performance = losses. Really? Ron Washington and his coke use has the Rangers in the ALCS but Francona takes some Vics or Percs and the Red Sox blow a division lead. Shoddy logic, there.
Did Francona’s vicodin cause Carl Crawford to hit .255? Did his Oxy make John Lackey have a 6.41 ERA? Did it cause the injury to Buchholz?
You want to talk about drugs? How ‘bout somebody ask what Theo was on when he gave Dice-K that huge contract!
C’mon Boston, get your shit together. Or don’t. I don’t care.
For Your Reading Pleasure:
SI.com write Joe Posnanski has Ryan Howard’s five-year,$125MM contract fourth on his list of the ten worst contracts in baseball.Article HERE. The highlight: he writes that Howard is “becoming a less and less useful player all the time.”