The Red Sox Mutiny
The Red Sox Mutiny
The 2012 Red Sox season is playing out exactly like an episode of ‘Survivor’–folks dropping like flies, in-team hostility and last but not least mutiny. There will be someone getting voted out, unfortunately for manager Bobby Valentine it’s starting to look more and more like the tribe has spoken.
Yahoo! Sports was first notified by news of a team staged meeting led by 1st baseman Adrian Gonzalez, and Red Sox staple 2nd baseman Dustin Pedroia, in which they vehemently voiced their displeasure in playing for Valentine. The meeting took place during an off day on July 26th just before the team kicked off a series against the Yankees in New York. The season started off rocky for Valentine from the get go as would be predicted from a team hot off the heels of one of baseball’s biggest collapses, Valentine had his work cut out for him. Follow that up with the flat out fact that the Red Sox as a team just really aren’t that good and it was like a powder keg waiting to implode. The Red Sox front office had been fighting tooth and nail to try to keep the brewing drama under control from the eyes of the media, but it’s starting to be to no avail, Red Sox GM Ben Charington tried to downplay the meeting by telling Yahoo!:
The intent of the meeting was to provide a forum for people to express whatever frustration needed to be expressed at a time during the season when things were not going exactly the way we wanted to on the field in hopes that we could put whatever issues were there aside and focus on playing games the rest of the season. That was the intent of the meeting. That was the focus of ownership.
Dustin Pedroia who has been pegged as one of Valentine’s biggest enemies has denied reports of his desire to have Valentine fired. Whatever backing down the team does it’s still widely common knowledge that neither the team or Valetine are in love with each other, even Kevin Youkilis offered his two cents about Bobby V on his way out the door to the White Sox. Valentine has a reputation for being a hot head and controversial skipper who gets his players to play, the Red Sox thought that kind of spunky attitude would be just the turn around they needed after letting go the more affable Francona. The experiment has so far been a bust and the Sox are three games under .500 at 57-60 with all their chances at a wild card evaporating down the drain. Is Bobby V being scape goated in all this?
Baseball has been called an indivdual’s game within a team game–you’re on your own in the batter’s box, separated by 60 feet around the infield and even more so in the outfield, the pitcher stands on the mound solo…there’s a huge element of self sufficiency in the game. Baseball is a carry your own weight game, or else get sent down and be replaced in the blink of an eye; there’s no crying allowed. So you can kind of imagine just how paltry and pathetic the Red Sox have come off the past few seasons blaming their manager every time things crumble for them. Last year it was blame everything on Francona, drag him through the mud even though they won two world series under his tenure and this year it’s the witch hunt on Valentine, when are they gonna man up? Yes, the manager does and should bear a portion of the blame for poor play, but let’s admit it the Red Sox aren’t the elite squad they’ve been known to be and haven’t been in quite a while. Too many people are going by the past and the big time names like Big Papi, Pedroia and Gonzalez and falling into the trap of believing that they’re still the same team from 2007 and 2004–they’re not. Even the team itself can’t take a long hard look in the mirror and face the reality of the matter. The front office tried to run away from the truth by throwing big money at an average but speedy player like Carl Crawford to mask the ever more visible cracks in their crumbling facade and now this elaborate game of pin the blame on the manager each season is getting tiresome. While the team was staging the failed mutiny to oust Valentine maybe they would’ve been better off using that time to take in some batting practice. Don’t you think?
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