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Finn: Gammons wrong to call out Globe reporter (Hohler)


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#1 joyofsox


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 12:51 PM

Was this reported when Gammons on the Hub?

Peter Gammons wrong to call out Globe reporter
By Chad Finn | GLOBE STAFF APRIL 20, 2012

The perception that Peter Gammons’s journalistic compass can go on the fritz when it comes to matters of the Red Sox is not a new one.

(pay wall)


Finn, quoted at Hardball Talk:
http://hardballtalk....e-boston-globe/

During his weekly appearance on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s “Felger and Massarotti’’ show last Wednesday, Gammons asserted that Globe reporter Bob Hohler should reveal the anonymous sources from his bombshell story last October on the factors contributing to the Red Sox’ historic collapse. Those factors, according to Hohler’s sources, included manager Terry Francona’s personal issues and a fractured clubhouse in which a clique of pitchers were drinking beer and eating chicken during games.

It was an absurd suggestion.



#2 Andy Merchant

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 12:57 PM

I remember Gammons saying that and Felger & Mazz disagreeing with him about it. FWIW, he did back off of that statement on his appearance the following week.

#3 Titoschew

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 12:57 PM

Unless Gammo posted it on Twitter, I don't believe it even happened.

#4 nattysez

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 12:59 PM

Finn was also very outspoken in defending Hohler's article on Twitter when it first hit the newsstands.

I can't figure out if he does this on his own or if he is being directed to do this by his bosses -- it's suspicious that the only well-liked writer on the Globe staff who writes much about baseball (Amalie doesn't do that much baseball coverage anymore) is the one tasked with repeatedly defending the hatchet job.

Anyway, I wish he'd stop -- it makes me think less of him.

Edit: I entirely agree with the idea that a journalist should not reveal his sources. What annoys me is Finn repeatedly insisting that mentioning the pills/family stuff regarding Francona was fair.

Edited by nattysez, 20 April 2012 - 01:00 PM.


#5 wutang112878


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 01:19 PM

I really like Chad 99% of the time, but I think he is off-base on this one. About 4 months ago he wrote an article suggesting that Santos and Cappelletti step down, simply stating his opinion but critiquing their performance. But now he is critiquing Gammons because he is critiquing the 'trash him on the way out of town' article that the Globe published with 'team' sources which is just a little vague. There are times and issues that Gammons can be called out on, like his pro-RedSox bias, or lack of reporting on steroids stuff, sure. But in this case, I think he has a valid point, that if you are going to publish such a damaging article you should have some more specific citations for your sources. Its the very similar to the problem that we had originally with the Tomase article claiming that the Pats taped the Rams walkthrough, that if you are going to make such damaging claims in an article you better have some very good sources, and even if you dont completely reveal them, simply citing 'team sources' is unacceptable.

#6 wutang112878


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 01:23 PM

Edit: I entirely agree with the idea that a journalist should not reveal his sources. What annoys me is Finn repeatedly insisting that mentioning the pills/family stuff regarding Francona was fair.


I agree, reporters cant reveal their sources or they wont get stories. And this really makes Finn look bad IMO, I have to believe if the Herald had published this story he would have a very different opinion on this situation.

#7 Harry Hooper


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 01:28 PM

As noted above, Finn is way behind as PG already acknowledged that asking Hohler to name his sources is not a viable option. He does maintain. however, a low opinion of the article itself.

#8 Gambler7

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 02:18 PM

I don't get the article or the timing. I heard the original interview over two weeks ago and I don't really remember him "asserting" anything. I remember him saying maybe the only way for all this to be put behind everyone is for him to come out and say where it came from. Was it a dumb comment considering who Peter is? Yea, but he wasn't on the radio blasting Hohler demanding he reveal who it was. Tony M called him out on it this week and he agreed it was something that would never happen, etc and it wasn't really an option to reveal the source.

I think that article is well over the top.

Edited by Gambler7, 20 April 2012 - 02:19 PM.


#9 Chad Finn

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 04:30 PM

Appreciate the thoughts on the column, guys. I grew up idolizing Gammons, as many of you did. But he's dead-wrong on this, and it's a double-standard he's lived by himself for a long time. As the media writer, I had to call him out for it. No, I wasn't tasked to writing this -- my boss didn't even know about it until yesterday afternoon. There's not much I can add here that I didn't address in my column, but I will ask again: Why does Tito continue to have a strong relationship with the Globe? The answer is obvious -- Bob was more than fair, and Tito knows it. And in telling the story of why the season went so wrong -- the question all of us were asking following Andino vs. Papelbon, Game 162 -- Tito's personal issues did matter, because that certain click of players tuned him out and disrespected him, taking advantage of him being distracted. Regarding Gammons, it's absurd that he'd suggest that any reporter should reveal his confidential sources. It's a basic tenet of the business.

#10 soxfan121


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 04:37 PM

There's not much I can add here that I didn't address in my column, but I will ask again: Why does Tito continue to have a strong relationship with the Globe? The answer is obvious -- Bob was more than fair, and Tito knows it.


Thanks again, Chad. You could hire a skywriter or buy the advertising space on the CF wall to make this point and some people will never acknowledge it as being true. To them, Hohler & ownership conspired to smear Francona and nothing you say will change their opinion.

#11 Dummy Hoy


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 04:38 PM

I really like Chad 99% of the time, but I think he is off-base on this one. About 4 months ago he wrote an article suggesting that Santos and Cappelletti step down, simply stating his opinion but critiquing their performance. But now he is critiquing Gammons because he is critiquing the 'trash him on the way out of town' article that the Globe published with 'team' sources which is just a little vague. There are times and issues that Gammons can be called out on, like his pro-RedSox bias, or lack of reporting on steroids stuff, sure. But in this case, I think he has a valid point, that if you are going to publish such a damaging article you should have some more specific citations for your sources. Its the very similar to the problem that we had originally with the Tomase article claiming that the Pats taped the Rams walkthrough, that if you are going to make such damaging claims in an article you better have some very good sources, and even if you dont completely reveal them, simply citing 'team sources' is unacceptable.


The only person that Hohler's has to be specific to is his boss, who can then decide to run with it or not. He doesn't owe you a thing. If you think that what he's saying is crap- then you can continue to. Hohler had legit sources, his bosses knew that, and Tito knew it as well. That's what really counts.

#12 Dalton Jones

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 05:27 PM

This sucks because it involves two writers I respect. And of course journalists shouldn't reveal their sources, which Gammons later conceded. But Chad Finn ignores the fact in his piece and here that journalists are at times manipulated by their sources, who use their power to grant access to reporters as a way to sully the reputations of others, or shape opinion. They can do this because the competitive nature of the news business compels reporters to worship the scoop. The story made waves, everyone talked about it for weeks, and the Globe got eyeballs.

So Gammons's gaffe now provides a chance for Chad to get on his high journalistic horse and scold a legend to the general applause of the profession.

Bravissimo!

#13 nattysez

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 05:33 PM

Thanks again, Chad. You could hire a skywriter or buy the advertising space on the CF wall to make this point and some people will never acknowledge it as being true. To them, Hohler & ownership conspired to smear Francona and nothing you say will change their opinion.


The rational argument is not that Hohler was hand-picked by Sox management to write the hatchet job. The rational theory - and not one thing that Finn has said contradicts this - is that Sox ownership was responsible for feeding Hohler the most damning information in the story. The fact that Tito is still so upset with Sox management while being willing to work with certain Globe writers strongly suggests that this is what he thinks as well. Tito may believe that Hohler was just doing his job, while Sox management fed him information that should have remained in-house.

And I will maintain that the pills/family information had no place in the story, and Finn is dead wrong when he says they did. That's a difference of opinion and I'll happily stick with mine.

Edited by nattysez, 20 April 2012 - 10:42 PM.


#14 Dehere

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 05:39 PM

Chad, do you believe that anonymity should have been granted to the source(s) as it related to Tito's pills and marital situation? That's highly personal stuff with debatable relevance to the job Tito did as manager last year.

While I certainly agree that the sources could not and should not be revealed after publication, I question whether the anonymity should have been allowed. To me anonymity is a tool you use when a source is revealing important information at some personal or professional risk to themselves (but I'm not a journalist). Did these revelations really meet that standard

#15 Sampo Gida

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 06:22 PM

Chad, do you believe that anonymity should have been granted to the source(s) as it related to Tito's pills and marital situation? That's highly personal stuff with debatable relevance to the job Tito did as manager last year.

While I certainly agree that the sources could not and should not be revealed after publication, I question whether the anonymity should have been allowed. To me anonymity is a tool you use when a source is revealing important information at some personal or professional risk to themselves (but I'm not a journalist). Did these revelations really meet that standard


Would the disclosure of the pills Tito was prescribed be a violation of HIPAA?. Maybe the DOJ should investigate. Let Hohler testify in front of a Grand Jury.

#16 Mo's OBP

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 07:04 PM

The pills and beer in the locker room--and Manager's office--is the Lucky slander.

Thank you Pedro and Nomar (and Mo, who actually got in trouble) for coming back today.

#17 joeyp

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 08:22 PM

not to call out a fellow poster, but Chad Finn's post was full of horsefeathers, and he knows it. while he is correct in stating that no respectable reporter would give up his sources, Chad also knows that no self respecting reporter would allow himself to be used by a source. Chad knows who Hohlers source was, and he knows that as a writer in Boston he is also dependent upon that sources good graces for access. imagine if Chad came out and admitted who was behind the Hatchet job and he suddenly was no longer given access to the lockerroom?

Chad calling Gammons to task was self serving in the very least because Hohler allowed himself to be used, knowing full well that the source of the quotes could hide behind the guise of journalistic integrity. Gammons was correct in stating that the only way for the truth to come out would be for the reporter in question to reveal his source. thats a fact and nothing Gammons said is disingenuous.

Chad is being very disingenuous because he is trying to obfuscate the real issue, namely that Hohler allowed his source to hide behind the guise of journalistic integrity and run a story that really wasnt worthy of print. Hohler and Chad Finn by extension are buttering their own bread as it were, by cultivating a source that gives them access, selling their journalistic integrity for future stories, and calling out Gammons, just to hide their own Culpability,

The crime here isnt Gammons statement, The crime here is that Hoohler and by extension Chad Finn, allowed themselves to be used as hatchet men for their own personal gain

and I dare Chad Finn to dispute that. Gammons shows more integrity by speaking honestly, While Chad Finn obfuscates by muddying the waters calling Gammons out

Tito's personal issues did matter, because that certain click of players tuned him out and disrespected him, taking advantage of him being distracted. Regarding Gammons, it's absurd that he'd suggest that any reporter should reveal his confidential sources. It's a basic tenet of the business.


this is further obfuscaton on Chads part, since if tito's personal matters were relevant, to the Red Sox failures, then Wouldnt the Sources relationships with Theo and Tito and the team be equally as relevant? of course they would be. But Chad wont address that, Why? because his livelihood depends on the source for access.

Chad has alot of explaining to do, at least Gammons was honest in his opinion, Chad not so much

Edited by joeyp, 20 April 2012 - 08:42 PM.


#18 Chad Finn

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:00 PM

Joey, not to call out a fellow poster, but you're theory is short-sighted and ill-informed Hohler was not used. And everything in that story, as I believe my editor said at the time, was corroborated by at least two sources. I'm not obfuscating anything. I'm telling you why I wrote it the way did. And the whole "dependent upon the sources" thing is ridiculous. I'm a media writer who writes a mostly baseball column a few times a week. My sources have nothing to do with Bob's on this story. You, however, are reliant upon the bold-type command. This reads like a note I'd get from John Dennis.

#19 joeyp

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:46 PM

and you chad are covering your posterior, thats all you are doing. as i stated before if tito's job was affected by his medinal use of painkillers, Then is it not equally possible that Tito's and Theo's ability to do their job, was affected by the Source? yes or no Chad?

thats where you are disingenuous, Theo and Tito' were directly influenced by your source each and every single day, I would think that would have a much higher corelation to their ability to work effectively than any medicinal treatment. yet Hohler relied on that person as his source. He did not address whether "the Source had any ulterior motive, Which is the first criteria of whether a source is credible or not, that my friend is how I know you are full of horsefeathers, any investigator or detective will tell you that.

The reason you and Hohler didnt do that is because you are dependent on your source for access and if you deny that then you are untruthful. you can try and obfuscate that all you wish by putting me down all you like, but the people of Boston arent fools. Your source has a long history in the public eye and that history cries out the truth

The fact that you try now to obfuscate the truth just proves that you have even less integrity than I surmised and if you or Hohler had even an ounce of the Journalistic integrity you claim to have, then:

A) your source would have been at least as much a part of the story as Tito's medical use (basically because "the source" had at least as much, if not more impact on Theo's and Tito's ability to do their jobs)

and B) Hohler would have addressed the issue of whether "the Source" had an Ulterior motive for releasing the information. the credibility of the information does not solely depend upon the accuracy of said information, but also upon the reason the information is revealed by the source. Thats Journalism 101.

That my friend is why youre full of it, and no obfuscation by putting me down will deny those simple truths.You are a liar Chad and eventually when the source is revealed you will be exposed and this has nothing to do with John Dennis, it actually has more to do with Edward Bennett Williams and his theories, Which ties directly to your Source.

Edited by joeyp, 20 April 2012 - 09:57 PM.


#20 BannedbyNYYFans.com

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:52 PM

This reads like a note I'd get from John Dennis.


The ultimate insult. Stop the fight.

And fwiw, Gammons tweeted a fascinating and insightful response to Chad's article:
Spoiler


#21 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:55 PM

Thanks again, Chad. You could hire a skywriter or buy the advertising space on the CF wall to make this point and some people will never acknowledge it as being true. To them, Hohler & ownership conspired to smear Francona and nothing you say will change their opinion.


Sigh. The issue, as always, has not been whether or not the charges were true. The issue was why the Red Sox were providing damaging personal info about Francona for public dissemination in the Boston Globe for the express purpose of destroying Tito's reputation out the door.

It was a disgraceful act and one of the worst in ownership's tenure. Of course they conspired to smear the guy. True or not, that stuff had no business being broadcast to the whole world. Had Sox ownership and members of the organization not agreed to give Hohler such info, the story would not have been run. Hohler was doing his job and calling around for information. It was apparently freely provided.

#22 joeyp

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:00 PM

Would the disclosure of the pills Tito was prescribed be a violation of HIPAA?. Maybe the DOJ should investigate. Let Hohler testify in front of a Grand Jury.


bingo this is the key point, why didnt Hohler address the credibility of the source?

#23 joeyp

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:09 PM

SJH, you are correct of course, but as I pointed out credibility doesnt solely depend upon the information's accuracy, the journalist is responsible also to assess the reason the information is revealed by the source. that is just as important to credibility as accuracy is.

the question is why didnt Hohler do that, and why Chad felt obligated to call out Gammons, while ignoring Hohler's failure to follow up on this most basic of journalistic endeavors

#24 Mystic Merlin


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:14 PM

If you bold another clause, I'm going to reach through the portal and strangle you.

#25 Average Reds


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:29 PM

Would the disclosure of the pills Tito was prescribed be a violation of HIPAA?. Maybe the DOJ should investigate. Let Hohler testify in front of a Grand Jury.


bingo this is the key point, why didnt Hohler address the credibility of the source?


This was addressed when the story broke last fall.

The only possible way this could be a HIPAA violation would be if the source of the information was a covered entity. And unless the Red Sox are self-insured for their healthcare coverage (extremely unlikely) they are not a covered entity.

Even if the Sox were a covered entity, this would not be enough to prove that a HIPAA violation took place. For that to be the case, it would need to be proven that the individual who leaked the information was a Red Sox employee who had access to Tito's confidential medical records and that he/she gained their knowledge of Tito's usage of medication from looking at those records (and not from personal observation, for example).

Basically, unless the Sox are self-insured and the source was the Red Sox medical director, there's no HIPAA violation. Which is to say that I'm 100% certain that while the leak of the information was a slimy thing to do, there's no HIPAA violation here.

#26 joeyp

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:30 PM

If you bold another clause, I'm going to reach through the portal and strangle you.


I just do that so chad has to respond to the points, and not hiding behind obfuscations

it appears to me that it suited his purpose to come down on Gammons, yet when Hohler failed to do the journalists first responsibility, which is assessing credibility of the source, he was strangely silent

Edited by joeyp, 20 April 2012 - 10:40 PM.


#27 86spike


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:33 PM

I wish I had a big bottle of pain killers so I could take some and silence the source of the headache I get from reading this.

#28 Van Everyman


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:36 PM

Sigh. The issue, as always, has not been whether or not the charges were true. The issue was why the Red Sox were providing damaging personal info about Francona for public dissemination in the Boston Globe for the express purpose of destroying Tito's reputation out the door.

It was a disgraceful act and one of the worst in ownership's tenure. Of course they conspired to smear the guy. True or not, that stuff had no business being broadcast to the whole world. Had Sox ownership and members of the organization not agreed to give Hohler such info, the story would not have been run. Hohler was doing his job and calling around for information. It was apparently freely provided.

I'm sorry, did I miss you singlehandedly unveil Sox ownership as the culprit here? Has it ever occurred to you that the players, all but one of whom left Tito twisting in the wind btw, may have told Hohler about this? After all, they're the ones who got him fired in the first place with their unprofessional, immature behavior and pitiful play down the stretch.

For a long time, I wondered whether Theo was the rat. But the longer I watch this team continue to stink it up and not show much in the way of accountability, the easier it is for me to believe that the players who turned on Tito at the end of the season stabbed him in the back again after it was over.

#29 Sprowl


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Posted 20 April 2012 - 11:31 PM

I think it is worth going back to Hohler's story and especially to his subsequent spoken comments, which Pedros Hairstylist posted last fall. I have italicized several phrases below in this excerpt from PH's account because I think they speak directly to the question of whether there was a singular culprit (Lucchino was a favorite candidate), many culprits, or just a clubhouse full of witnesses.

As expected, Hohler and the others said "many, many sources" contributed to the story, including the issue about pill popping and its perceived effect on the Tito's ability to manage the team. There was a wide net cast -- as there should be -- and the allegations about the pill issue appeared to have legs given the number of people who talked about it and were in a position to know. He didnt say (obviously) if he took it to Larry or Werner or John Henry, nor did he say if he took it to Theo or Cherington (who also would have known if there was a legitimate concern or not), but I think the story implies that there was verification of some sort at every level within the ball club. Hopefully this puts to bed the lone peanut vendor theory, the ask-my-colleagues-what-they-think theory and the "pulling stuff out of the ass to get eyeballs on my article" theory...

Hohler also added that because of the volume of confirmation they got on this one issue, they could not leave it out and did take it right to Francona to confirm/deny.


Just before the Hohler story came out, many of the coaching, training and medicals staffs had already been fired, or could see their Red Sox employment circling the drain. There were lots of people with motivation to speak freely about the collapse. If that many people at that many levels are confirming the story, it makes the hunt for a single culprit look rather silly to me.


joeyp: for somebody who seems to care very much about journalism, or at least about what a few journalists wrote, you can't write worth a damn. I heartily recommend standard capitalization and punctuation for any further posts you hope to make.

#30 joeyp

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 12:43 AM

I think it is worth going back to Hohler's story and especially to his subsequent spoken comments, which Pedros Hairstylist posted last fall. I have italicized several phrases below in this excerpt from PH's account because I think they speak directly to the question of whether there was a singular culprit (Lucchino was a favorite candidate), many culprits, or just a clubhouse full of witnesses.



Just before the Hohler story came out, many of the coaching, training and medicals staffs had already been fired, or could see their Red Sox employment circling the drain. There were lots of people with motivation to speak freely about the collapse. If that many people at that many levels are confirming the story, it makes the hunt for a single culprit look rather silly to me.


joeyp: for somebody who seems to care very much about journalism, or at least about what a few journalists wrote, you can't write worth a damn. I heartily recommend standard capitalization and punctuation for any further posts you hope to make.


Sprowl, while you make valid points, even you bring out that many levels are merely confirming the story, it seems to me that it makes a world of difference if someone in the front office gave Hohler the story and it was confirmed on other levels afterward as opposed to the converse.

Given past history of certain executives in both San Diego and Baltimore, and Theo's near earlier exit, one would logically conclude that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck. then most likely it is a duck. People generally follow the patterns they have established over a lifetime

Yet there was one more detail about Francona, revealed to the newspaper, that elevates this particular hatchet job:

“While Francona coped with his marital and health issues, he also worried privately about the safety of his son, Nick, and son-in-law, Michael Rice, both of whom are Marine officers serving in Afghanistan.”

To drag into this, the service to this country of Francona’s son, and son-in-law, is beyond any pale. They didn’t just get there this year. But publicizing where they are is something Francona has asked even his friends not to do. It actually might materially affect their safety. This points to someone with an agenda, not merely someone with an axe to grind over a firing.

One need only research incidents in San Diego with Scott Boras over Kevin Brown, and allegations that arose with unions involved with the Construction of Camden Yards in Baltimore, to recognize that incidents like this are not isolated events. it merely shows that this is all part of a single modus operandi, one that has been used several times before.

Edited by joeyp, 21 April 2012 - 12:46 AM.


#31 Sprowl


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 01:03 AM

Sprowl, while you make valid points, even you bring out that many levels are merely confirming the story, it seems to me that it makes a world of difference if someone in the front office gave Hohler the story and it was confirmed on other levels afterward as opposed to the converse.

Given past history of certain executives in both San Diego and Baltimore, and Theo's near earlier exit, one would logically conclude that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck. then most likely it is a duck. People generally follow the patterns they have established over a lifetime

Yet there was one more detail about Francona, revealed to the newspaper, that elevates this particular hatchet job:

“While Francona coped with his marital and health issues, he also worried privately about the safety of his son, Nick, and son-in-law, Michael Rice, both of whom are Marine officers serving in Afghanistan.”

To drag into this, the service to this country of Francona’s son, and son-in-law, is not only beyond any pale. They didn’t just get there this year. But publicizing where they are is something Francona has asked even his friends not to do. It actually might materially affect their safety. This points to someone with an agenda, not merely someone with an axe to grind over a firing.

One need only research incidents in San Diego with Scott Boras over Kevin Brown, and allegations that arose with unions involved with the Construction of Camden Yards in Baltimore, to recognize that incidents like this are not isolated events. it merely shows that this is all part of a single modus operandi, one that has been used several times before.


So you are contending, based on nothing in particular beyond vague insinuations about Larry Lucchino's past, that Lucchino leaked it first as a smear campaign, while nobody else would mention it, and that subsequently everybody else merely confirmed the story? I recognize that Bad Cop Lucchino is a dislikable character. That dislike does not constitute an adequate basis on which to conclude that it was a Lucchino-originated smear campaign, and that nobody else in a clubhouse full of witnesses (for example, fired trainers, discharged coaches, or players in the clique that tuned Tito out) could have given the answer first.

I think you need to detail why those separate incidents constitute a single characteristic mode of operating sufficient to conclude that Lucchino is a singular culprit. Why does reference to officers serving in Afghanistan indicate a single agenda? That paranoid leap makes zero sense to me. You are asserting the equivalent of Lucchino's fingerprint on the smoking gun, but what I am hearing is that the great witch-hunt of 2011 is ongoing, and you really, really want to see if Lucchino will float.

#32 Sampo Gida

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 02:07 AM

This was addressed when the story broke last fall.

The only possible way this could be a HIPAA violation would be if the source of the information was a covered entity. And unless the Red Sox are self-insured for their healthcare coverage (extremely unlikely) they are not a covered entity.

Even if the Sox were a covered entity, this would not be enough to prove that a HIPAA violation took place. For that to be the case, it would need to be proven that the individual who leaked the information was a Red Sox employee who had access to Tito's confidential medical records and that he/she gained their knowledge of Tito's usage of medication from looking at those records (and not from personal observation, for example).

Basically, unless the Sox are self-insured and the source was the Red Sox medical director, there's no HIPAA violation. Which is to say that I'm 100% certain that while the leak of the information was a slimy thing to do, there's no HIPAA violation here.


No expert, but assuming the Red Sox have a fully insured health plan, the covered entity is the "group health plan". The group health plan would be treated as a component within the employer. As sponsor of the plan, the Red Sox may receive PHI for administrative purposes. If anyone involved in that group health plan disclosed Titos PHI, members of the Red Sox or not, directly or indirectly, that would be a HIPAA violation.

https://www.bcbsmt.c...PAABlueBook.pdf

Proof is a different matter. Before you can prove anything, you have to investigate to determine the source of the leak, and then go on from there. I would think Tito has to file a complaint for that to be done by anyone other than the Red Sox.

#33 Harry Hooper


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 02:56 AM

Appreciate the thoughts on the column, guys. I grew up idolizing Gammons, as many of you did. But he's dead-wrong on this, and it's a double-standard he's lived by himself for a long time. As the media writer, I had to call him out for it.


Gammons is no sacred cow here in these forums, One of my first (if not my very first) posts on the old SoSH board was a criticism of something PG had written. So, by all means he should not be exempt from your scrutiny, but “I had to call him out for it.”? Really now? PG had already acknowledged that he made a mistake regarding Hohler naming the sources -- a mistake that arose not from a carefully considered analysis on PG’s part but from a bit of spitballing on live radio about potential ways to sort of clear the air between Tito and the team. He made a mistake and readily acknowledged it. You can put your Émile Zola suit back in the cedar closet.


Why does Tito continue to have a strong relationship with the Globe? The answer is obvious -- Bob was more than fair, and Tito knows it.


Tito’s working on a book with Dan “Shank” Shaughnessy, and cozying up to someone before slipping the knife in is part of that writer’s m.o. (e.g., ask Ted Williams’ kids). Also, a wounded Tito seeking a bit of revenge possibly would be attracted to working with a writer known for routinely taking shots at the management/ownership of the local teams. Yes, many of these shots were well-deserved, but many others were cheap blather (e.g, criticizing Henry for being distracted by Liverpool after criticizing Kraft for being too involved with scouting players). Hey, Shaughnessy is enough of a misanthrope that he whacked Lou Gorman in the process of thanking Lou for sending along a note of concern for his daughter getting diagnosed with cancer. Time will tell if Tito regrets the deal he made with the local Iago.

And in telling the story of why the season went so wrong -- the question all of us were asking following Andino vs. Papelbon, Game 162 -- Tito's personal issues did matter, because that certain click [sic] of players tuned him out and disrespected him, taking advantage of him being distracted.


You’re showing a lot of easy certitude if you claiming that the Sox failed to make the playoffs because of Tito’s issues. Players compete on the mound or the batter’s box against the other team, not their own manager. The Hohler & Co. article was a mess in my opinion because it because it ran through a laundry list of on-field and off-field issues (many common among MLB teams enduring a 6-month campaign) without being informed enough or maybe courageous enough to explicitly link specific issues to the record in September. In other words, it’s heavy on titillation but light on rigorous explanation.

Last September, I remember posting on SoSH that if Tito & Holley were writing a new book on the 2011 Red Sox, the title should be Managing Naked because he didn’t have a viable starting rotation. Nothing saps the life out of a team more than playing from behind almost every night because the starting pitchers aren’t doing their jobs. That’s how you end up with a historically poor W-L record, and not because players are disrespecting the manager, not hitting the cutoff man, drinking beer on off-days, and so forth. Look at what’s happening right now with the 2012 Sox. Tito’s gone, but the struggles continue chiefly because the starting pitching keeps allowing too many early runs by the opposition.

Regarding Gammons, it's absurd that he'd suggest that any reporter should reveal his confidential sources. It's a basic tenet of the business.


Again, you can put the club away. He already said it was a mistake. If you want to show some bravery as a media critic, you might want to examine the work of your Globe colleague Abraham. It seems a reputation for misleading writing and dissembling preceded his arrival at the Globe. He certainly appears to be guilty of willfully misrepresenting Gonzalez’s comments about the scheduling of getaway games, and he possibly contributed to the mischaracterization in the Hohler article of the players’ issues with the doubleheader planning in August.

#34 wutang112878


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 06:29 AM

Chad - thanks for checking in on this. Follow up question for you that has bugged me about this issue for a while. If what Hohler wrote is accurate and many sources confirmed that Tito had a problem with pills, why wasnt there a follow up article on ownership and Larry? Specifically asking, can you confirm that Tito had a problem with pills? [As far as I know they never came out and said no, or denied that there was a problem] And if they said there was a problem, then what did they do to address that during the season and if they didnt do anything why didnt they fire him during the season? I think these would be interesting questions to ask, and if the Globe thinks the fans are entitled to the news about Tito having an addiction problem, I would argue the fans are also entitled to know specifically what ownership did about this, or if ownership completely denies this. Unfortunately, I dont think the Globe did enough adequate follow up in this area.

One last question, also if ownership/Larry were to not deny the pill thing, but claim that they 'didnt know' about it, how inadequate do they look? They not only cant figure out for Tito who leaked this stuff, but they also were completely oblivious to the entire issue. I think that would be a worthwhile CHB article that I would gladly give him page reads for, and its because these questions have never been answered or asked to my knowledge that I feel some additional reporting should be done.

Edited by wutang112878, 21 April 2012 - 06:34 AM.


#35 pedros hairstylist


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 08:44 AM

The reason why Bob Hohler was the one to write that story (as opposed to a full-time sports writer) was because he had not only the reporting chops to do it and turn it around quickly, but because of his distance from the team. He still had contacts in and around the team from his time covering the Sox earlier in the decade, but he would not be beholden to them for access in order to do his job going forward.

That is the inherent problem with having the same beat writers covering a team year in and year out -- they get lazy and complacent, thinking they're bigger than the people they cover, and do too much horse trading to do a 100 percent honest job. Every time you cut a deal with source, whether explicit or implied, you've sacrificed some of the truth.

#36 soxfan121


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 09:11 AM

Wow. I...there....uh...fuck.

If what Hohler wrote is accurate and many sources confirmed that Tito had a problem with pills, why wasnt there a follow up article on ownership and Larry?


Francona confirmed there was concern. And denied there was a problem. Hohler heard CONCERNS from multiple sources at different levels of the organization. And there were "follow up articles". Look them up.

Specifically asking, can you confirm that Tito had a problem with pills? [As far as I know they never came out and said no, or denied that there was a problem]


I'm not Chad but I'll guarantee he's not answering this, nor should he. It's a bullshit gotcha question. And the second part is flat out wrong. Whether you believe them or not is a different question, but claiming ownership "never denied" is wrong. Look it up.

And if they said there was a problem, then what did they do to address that during the season and if they didnt do anything why didnt they fire him during the season?


First, that you think an appropriate way for an employer to handle a concern about an employee is to FIRE the employee is illuminating.

Second, you do know that it is the GENERAL MANAGER'S role to directly supervise the manager, correct? You should be asking what Theo knew and when he knew it.

I think these would be interesting questions to ask, and if the Globe thinks the fans are entitled to the news about Tito having an addiction problem, I would argue the fans are also entitled to know specifically what ownership did about this, or if ownership completely denies this. Unfortunately, I dont think the Globe did enough adequate follow up in this area.


Do you really think you are the first to ask these questions? Do you really think the Globe (Joe Sullivan, Bob Hohler, etc.) wrote the story, kicked their feet up on the desk, laughed and said "fuck it, our work here is done?"

Unfortunately, I don't think you understand that the Globe cannot force sources to talk, cannot conjure up what YOU think YOU are entitled to and cannot be held responsible if you don't bother to seek out the information you are interested in. Sprowl's post above directly addresses ALL of this...yet, you wrote this as if you hadn't read that post or understood it.

to my knowledge that I feel some additional reporting should be done.


No shit. Your knowledge here is lacking and you're ignorantly demanding something that has already been provided. That you jumped to a conclusion without a proper understanding of the situation is not the responsibility of the Boston Globe. Unfortunately, you are directly responsible for your own ignorance, starting with your inability to read Sprowl's posts in this thread and stretching back to September, where all of "additional reporting" you feel entitled to sits in a Google Cache, waiting for you to read.

As expected, Hohler and the others said "many, many sources" contributed to the story, including the issue about pill popping and its perceived effect on the Tito's ability to manage the team. There was a wide net cast -- as there should be -- and the allegations about the pill issue appeared to have legs given the number of people who talked about it and were in a position to know. He didnt say (obviously) if he took it to Larry or Werner or John Henry, nor did he say if he took it to Theo or Cherington (who also would have known if there was a legitimate concern or not), but I think the story implies that there was verification of some sort at every level within the ball club. Hopefully this puts to bed the lone peanut vendor theory, the ask-my-colleagues-what-they-think theory and the "pulling stuff out of the ass to get eyeballs on my article" theory...



Of course they conspired to smear the guy. True or not, that stuff had no business being broadcast to the whole world. Had Sox ownership and members of the organization not agreed to give Hohler such info, the story would not have been run.


No. If Francona had declined to comment, if would not have been run. Fact, not opinion.

#37 Judge Mental13


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 10:31 AM

You guys are all just obfuscating the obfuscations of these obfuscaters

#38 wutang112878


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 01:02 PM

Wow. I...there....uh...fuck.


A great place to start would be to post without being snarky. Its possible to disagree and express different viewpoints while being nice.

Francona confirmed there was concern. And denied there was a problem. Hohler heard CONCERNS from multiple sources at different levels of the organization. And there were "follow up articles". Look them up.


Those arent my issues though. Ownership has never denied that there was a problem would be a nice gesture towards Tito, they also wont go on record and acknowledge that there was a problem and take accountability for allowing him to manage if they were indeed concerned. My point is that they shouldnt be allowed to play both sides of the fence, they should be called out and IMO much more than they have been. And to be fair, if Gammons is so upset about this he should be calling them out on this as well. If there were any follow-up articles with quotes, or denials or even 'no comments' from ownership please point me in that direction, I dont think I have seen them.

I'm not Chad but I'll guarantee he's not answering this, nor should he. It's a bullshit gotcha question. And the second part is flat out wrong. Whether you believe them or not is a different question, but claiming ownership "never denied" is wrong. Look it up.


I think asking for some real evidence that there was a problem before such personal matters are made public isnt an outlandish request. Again, if you can point me in the direction of the article where they denied, not that they were the source, but that there was a problem with pills please let me know.

First, that you think an appropriate way for an employer to handle a concern about an employee is to FIRE the employee is illuminating.

Second, you do know that it is the GENERAL MANAGER'S role to directly supervise the manager, correct? You should be asking what Theo knew and when he knew it.


I didnt suggest they just fire him. I suggested that if they were indeed concerned, then they should take some action and if they didnt feel the action was working and were concerned it affected his job performance then yes as the management of the organization it would then be their responsibility to fire him if they felt it would make the team more effective. If they didnt feel the team would be better off without him, then they should not be concerned about his job performance. Its another issue where I think they are playing both sides of the fence.

Do you really think you are the first to ask these questions? Do you really think the Globe (Joe Sullivan, Bob Hohler, etc.) wrote the story, kicked their feet up on the desk, laughed and said "fuck it, our work here is done?"

Unfortunately, I don't think you understand that the Globe cannot force sources to talk, cannot conjure up what YOU think YOU are entitled to and cannot be held responsible if you don't bother to seek out the information you are interested in. Sprowl's post above directly addresses ALL of this...yet, you wrote this as if you hadn't read that post or understood it.


This is repetitive to my comments above, but has there been any article interviewing the ownership and asking the specific questions I asked and getting them to say something on the record? To my knowledge no, and I really do think they are valid questions considering the damage that was done to the most successful manager we ever had.

As for Sprowls post, I am just suggesting that ownership be held accountable, I am not questioning who did the leaking here. If I was a stockholder in a company and someone was fired and it was learned that people were concerned about an addiction problem, I think its a reasonable request to have management detail what they did about it. While I dont own stock in the RedSox, as a fan I think to a degree there are things that we are entitled to. So I think for the sake of TItos reputation they should come out and deny there was a problem, or address it head on, and personally I dont believe they have effectively done either, and I dont think its unfair to criticize them for this issue.

#39 joeyp

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 08:19 PM

So you are contending, based on nothing in particular beyond vague insinuations about Larry Lucchino's past, that Lucchino leaked it first as a smear campaign, while nobody else would mention it, and that subsequently everybody else merely confirmed the story? I recognize that Bad Cop Lucchino is a dislikable character. That dislike does not constitute an adequate basis on which to conclude that it was a Lucchino-originated smear campaign, and that nobody else in a clubhouse full of witnesses (for example, fired trainers, discharged coaches, or players in the clique that tuned Tito out) could have given the answer first.

I think you need to detail why those separate incidents constitute a single characteristic mode of operating sufficient to conclude that Lucchino is a singular culprit. Why does reference to officers serving in Afghanistan indicate a single agenda? That paranoid leap makes zero sense to me. You are asserting the equivalent of Lucchino's fingerprint on the smoking gun, but what I am hearing is that the great witch-hunt of 2011 is ongoing, and you really, really want to see if Lucchino will float.


What i am suggesting Sprowl is that when anyone engages in a systematic smear campaign more than once in several cities and in numerous different business scenarios, one would be a fool to discount the possibility. One of the reasons George Santayana's statement of those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it, is considered a truism is because people are creatures of habit. When allegations arise repeatedly around a particular individual one would be wise to take note and act accordingly.

You are correct that we may never know if Hohler keeps quiet, but isn't that what the an offending party relies upon? Wasn't it Edmund Burke who stated:

"All that is necessary for the forces of evil to triumph is for enough good men to do nothing"

There comes a point where absent of evidence to the contrary that occam's razor must be applied, namely to select among competing hypotheses that which makes the fewest assumptions and thereby offers the simplest explanation of the effect.

simply put, where there is smoke there is likely fire, having formerly been a federal revenue officer based in Washington D.C. I have had some contact with the man in question, I have also heard allegations made by those in a position to know who have had fiduciary dealings with him. 23 years of experience gives one a nose for these things. You do not of course need to rely on my knowledge. You need to rely on your own. However sooner or later the evidence of numbers speaks on its own.

Edited by joeyp, 21 April 2012 - 08:27 PM.


#40 Sprowl


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 09:11 PM

What i am suggesting Sprowl is that when anyone engages in a systematic smear campaign more than once in several cities and in numerous different business scenarios, one would be a fool to discount the possibility. One of the reasons George Santayana's statement of those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it, is considered a truism is because people are creatures of habit. When allegations arise repeatedly around a particular individual one would be wise to take note and act accordingly.

You are correct that we may never know if Hohler keeps quiet, but isn't that what the an offending party relies upon? Wasn't it Edmund Burke who stated:

"All that is necessary for the forces of evil to triumph is for enough good men to do nothing"

There comes a point where absent of evidence to the contrary that occam's razor must be applied, namely to select among competing hypotheses that which makes the fewest assumptions and thereby offers the simplest explanation of the effect.

simply put, where there is smoke there is likely fire, having formerly been a federal revenue officer based in Washington D.C. I have had some contact with the man in question, I have also heard allegations made by those in a position to know who have had fiduciary dealings with him. 23 years of experience gives one a nose for these things. You do not of course need to rely on my knowledge. You need to rely on your own. However sooner or later the evidence of numbers speaks on its own.


Occam's Razor is a heuristic test used to evaluate two or more competing hypotheses that purport to explain the same set of facts. What is this set of facts? Put it out there: specific charges, with supporting links (even if it's just to journalists citing anonymous sources). If you want to air some dirty laundry, a message board is a reasonable place to do it, but we want more than insinuations of things you want to claim as support for these charges, but won't actually put up for inspection. What business scenarios? Which cities? Which reputations and what smears? How did Larry Lucchino turn you into a newt, and did it get better?

You have not earned the benefit of the doubt here, so you had better come up with specifics -- not smoke, not fire, not hazy metaphors and magical thinking, but specific claims with sources to back them up. Otherwise, I stand by my charge that you are engaged in vindictive and paranoid thinking of the kind consistent with a witch-hunt.

#41 joeyp

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 11:02 PM

think what you will then, i could care less. allegations have been made and evidence presented but not to the point of charges being filed. if you wish to believe thats the same as being innocent that is your right. I wont say another word about it

#42 86spike


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Posted 21 April 2012 - 11:30 PM

Is joeyp another Maalox gimmick account?

#43 Van Everyman


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Posted 22 April 2012 - 07:21 AM

I dunno, is Maalox a "former federal revenue officer" with friends who've had "dealings" with Larry Lucchino that clearly suggest that his is the kind of character that would assassinate Tito's?

Seriously, that is one of the craziest posts I've read in a long while.

#44 Dick Pole Upside

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 09:42 AM

think what you will then, i could care less. allegations have been made and evidence presented but not to the point of charges being filed. if you wish to believe thats the same as being innocent that is your right. I wont say another word about it


Pretty please?

Seriously, that is one of the craziest posts I've read in a long while.


He got this board mixed up with the Son of Sam board.

Edited by Dick Pole Upside, 22 April 2012 - 09:44 AM.


#45 pedros hairstylist


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Posted 22 April 2012 - 02:35 PM

Wow. Sprowl really deserves a raise, or at least a taser.

#46 PedroKsBambino


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Posted 22 April 2012 - 02:51 PM

The Globe has maintained, and Chad Finn explicitly states above, that TIto's personal issues impacted the team.

If this is so, then it is newsworthy. What a number of people have questioned, I think, is whether we should have the level of confidence in the cause-and-effect justification for the story that the Globe possesses. Because, if it is not so certain a connection then Tito's personal issues are not really something a legitimate paper should be reporting on.

The question for Chad Finn/the Globe then is what specific facts suggest that this cause-and-effect is a certainty?

#47 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 22 April 2012 - 03:16 PM

No. If Francona had declined to comment, if would not have been run. Fact, not opinion.


100% bullshit. "Francona declined to comment for this story."

#48 teddywingman


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Posted 22 April 2012 - 03:33 PM

think what you will then, i could care less. allegations have been made and evidence presented but not to the point of charges being filed. if you wish to believe thats the same as being innocent that is your right. I wont say another word about it


Well, at least he cares a little.

(the bolding is mine this time)

#49 crystalline

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 04:58 PM


The reason why Bob Hohler was the one to write that story (as opposed to a full-time sports writer) was because he had not only the reporting chops to do it and turn it around quickly, but because of his distance from the team. He still had contacts in and around the team from his time covering the Sox earlier in the decade, but he would not be beholden to them for access in order to do his job going forward.

 

This post is underappreciated - I hadn't realized exactly what Hohler's position with the Globe was now and that he really doesn't much need access to Sox sources going forward. 

 

Also, above Chad said that Francona has a good relationship with Hohler and the Globe.  Interesting, given this quote

 

“Somebody went out of their way to make me look pretty bad,’’ Francona said, referring to a story by the Globe’s Bob Hohler that cited unnamed club sources expressing concerns that Francona’s job performance may have been affected by his use of pain medication. “It’s a shame. I’m sure they’ll have a great event and I was part of a lot of that stuff there, but I just can’t go back there and start hugging people and stuff without feeling a little bit hypocritical.’’

So we know he isn't that annoyed at the Globe, and pissed at the owners.  That suggests there's a lot of interesting stuff that happened between them.  The story I'd really like to read is where some enterprising reporter would dig up is the nature of that relationship, and explain why he doesn't like them, beyond feeling like they didn't have his back in September 2011.



#50 xjack


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Posted 02 May 2012 - 09:20 AM

Realize I'm late to this topic, but given Gammons ties to NESN and the Sox organization, isn't it safe to assume he wants the leakers revealed because the info would absolve ownership of any involvement or prior knowledge of the leaks?