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"Francona: The Red Sox Years" (Due Jan. 22, 2013)


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#101 terrynever


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:22 AM

I thought Tito was a smart guy. He didn't want to write the book with DS for the obvious reasons but was manipulated to do so. Oh to have been a fly on the wall when they had lunch.

I'm shocked (not) that fans and media (local and national) took the bait and are running with the inflamatory quotes. My god, the story is front page, above the fold in today's Globe. I know, I know, they're promoting a book written by one of their employees but c'mon. Front page news?

I still have no interest in helping the CHB pay the cost of educating his kids. Whatever I need to know, I'll read here.

Won't Tito make some money on this book, too? Isn't that probably the reason he decided to team up with Shaughnessy?

#102 dcmissle


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:35 AM

For a score settling sensational book, the quotes posted above seem extremely milquetoast to me.


Tempest in teapot.

1. None of this stuff is surprising. We're not talking about the St. Louis Cardinals who quietly go about their business on the merits, and everyone knows it. The marketing side of this operation under the new regime has been obvious since day 1.

2. CHB would never carry out a hit against this ownership. He's a designated mouthpiece when the brass want to to leak and spin. He is to LL what Will McDonough was to Parcells and John Harrington.

From the beginning it was obvious to me that these guys were going to thread the needle -- try to make it interesting in some broad sense but inflict no mortal wounds.

#103 SeanBerry


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:57 AM

I thought Tito was a smart guy. He didn't want to write the book with DS for the obvious reasons but was manipulated to do so. Oh to have been a fly on the wall when they had lunch.


Why isn't Tito a smart guy? Because he dared to speak out against the all knowing and all powerful Red Sox ownership group? The same guys that kicked him to the curb and hired an actual clown to manage the team?

BSL: What would the current ownership have to do to make you think poorly of them?

#104 HillysLastWalk

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:00 PM

Why isn't Tito a smart guy? Because he dared to speak out against the all knowing and all powerful Red Sox ownership group? The same guys that kicked him to the curb and hired an actual clown to manage the team?

BSL: What would the current ownership have to do to make you think poorly of them?


I thought it was more along the lines of picking Dan as your co-writer, as opposed to her view of ownership.

#105 LoweTek

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:07 PM

BSL: What would the current ownership have to do to make you think poorly of them?


BSL and CHB have a little history. Leave it at that. Not speaking for BSL but I don't think the thrust of the post was deifying ownership. It was more directed at the choice of CHB as a co-author.

It will be interesting when the book can be fully considered. I have always thought something very significant happened internally in early September 2011 and we still don't know what. I doubt Tito will expose it here but hold out hope the buzz generated by whatever he does disclose will shed more light.

#106 brs3


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:14 PM

Any NY SoSHers planning on going to the book signing next Wednesday?

#107 JimD

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:14 PM

I really wish Tito had gone with his gut instinct and told CHB to take a hike. I refuse to believe that Shaughnessy didn't take advantage of Francona to grind a few axes by selectively editing the skipper's words and thoughts.

#108 David Laurila


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:42 PM

IMy god, the story is front page, above the fold in today's Globe. I know, I know, they're promoting a book written by one of their employees but c'mon. Front page news?


My concern isn't that the Globe put it on the front page, but rather that they're compromising journalistic integrity with a headline like "Former Sox manager says marketing trumped winning." Nowhere in the article does Francona say that..

#109 Sprowl


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:44 PM

I really wish Tito had gone with his gut instinct and told CHB to take a hike. I refuse to believe that Shaughnessy didn't take advantage of Francona to grind a few axes by selectively editing the skipper's words and thoughts.


If Francona has re-read the manuscript seven times, then I'm pretty sure that the axes are being ground because Tito wants them ground. The quotations we've read are clearly plucked out of context to make them seem more pungent and inflammatory than they will be in the full tale.

Once the full version emerges, I suspect that it will be very much like Tito's 2012 in the broadcasting booth and his 2004-2010 on-screen interviews from the dugout: sensible, urbane, good-natured and ultimately forgettable.

#110 The Gray Eagle


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 01:04 PM

My favorite part of all of this is from Massarotti's article: "the team paid $100,000 for a marketing research study to determine why its television ratings had dropped 50 percent from 2007 to 2010."

Hmm, let's see:
2007 96 wins, Division Champions, beat out the Yankees by 2 games with a World Championship level team.
2010, 89 wins, 3rd place, no playoffs, not even a real pennant race.

Why oh why aren't people watching as much on TV? It must be because we need more sexy players! We need more drama, we need to win in a more exciting fashion, we need more base stealers, more guys who look good in their uniforms. That's why people aren't watching! It's not the forest, it's the trees!

People aren't going to watch on TV if it's clear in August that the team isn't likely to make the playoffs. Win a lot of games and people will watch. That should be blindingly obvious.

#111 Savin Hillbilly


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 01:27 PM

I would guess that ownership's thinking was something like this: the serious baseball fans are a finite group whose response to the product on the field is fairly predictable; beyond that group are the people whose interest is going to depend on the success of our marketing efforts--the "pink hats". Ultimately we need to engage this group in order to thrive, so that's who our marketing strategy is going to focus on. Obviously, however, we don't want to make decisions that make the team on the field suck, or we risk losing some of the serious fans and make marketing to the pink hats more difficult.

Which is why Werner didn't say "we need more excitement whether it wins games or not," he said "we need to start winning in more exciting fashion." I can't help suspecting that he had his tongue at least a few centimeters into his cheek when he said this, but regardless, he's asking for sizzle and steak, not sizzle instead of steak. And while serious baseball fans may have little patience with that thinking, because we take for granted that winning is hard enough if you focus on that goal exclusively, from a business POV it makes sense. You have multiple audiences with different interests and expectations from your product; you try to balance your strategy to suit all of them.

My concern isn't that the Globe put it on the front page, but rather that they're compromising journalistic integrity with a headline like "Former Sox manager says marketing trumped winning." Nowhere in the article does Francona say that..


But as we've already demonstrated on this board, lots of reasonably intelligent people will read what Francona said and assume he meant that.

#112 HriniakPosterChild

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:51 PM

That list seems both limited and weighted towards wholesale clubs. Is that normal? I don't, you know, read real books.


When Bill Clinton came to Seattle to sign his book, he did it at the Issaquah Costco.

Costco and Sam's Club and friends sell tons of books.

#113 JimBoSox9


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:59 PM

My favorite part of all of this is from Massarotti's article: "the team paid $100,000 for a marketing research study to determine why its television ratings had dropped 50 percent from 2007 to 2010."

Hmm, let's see:
2007 96 wins, Division Champions, beat out the Yankees by 2 games with a World Championship level team.
2010, 89 wins, 3rd place, no playoffs, not even a real pennant race.

Why oh why aren't people watching as much on TV? It must be because we need more sexy players! We need more drama, we need to win in a more exciting fashion, we need more base stealers, more guys who look good in their uniforms. That's why people aren't watching! It's not the forest, it's the trees!

People aren't going to watch on TV if it's clear in August that the team isn't likely to make the playoffs. Win a lot of games and people will watch. That should be blindingly obvious.


You seem to be saying that since winning is the primary driver of attendance, the non-baseball ops departments shouldn't be making any efforts to determine secondary factors that drive attendance and see if gains can be made there. Is that an accurate assessment of your stance?


Guys, everyone agrees that baseball ops decisions should be made for baseball reasons. No one needs to be convinced of that. Tito and Theo, as department heads, are going to have some exposure to the business side of the org and their needs and wants. Based on what we know, there is absolutely, positively no evidence that baseball ops decisions were made for marketing reasons. All we know is that there was some desire from marketing to do things that help marketing, which is a tension that exists in every MLB team ever.

Everyone should actually read the linked Mazz article. It's a classic. He takes two completely un-linked facts (the Theo quote and the marketing report) and explictly presents it as "Damnation. Condemnation. Internal proof that the Red Sox were forcing business wants on their baseball needs purely in the name of greed." His reaction is like a primer on How To Not Consume Information.


When Bill Clinton came to Seattle to sign his book, he did it at the Issaquah Costco.

Costco and Sam's Club and friends sell tons of books.


Thanks. Never would have known that. Hell I was in a Sam's two weeks ago and I don't remember even seeing a book section.

Edited by JimBoSox9, 16 January 2013 - 03:00 PM.


#114 lexrageorge

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:02 PM

My favorite part of all of this is from Massarotti's article: "the team paid $100,000 for a marketing research study to determine why its television ratings had dropped 50 percent from 2007 to 2010."

Hmm, let's see:
2007 96 wins, Division Champions, beat out the Yankees by 2 games with a World Championship level team.
2010, 89 wins, 3rd place, no playoffs, not even a real pennant race.

Why oh why aren't people watching as much on TV? It must be because we need more sexy players! We need more drama, we need to win in a more exciting fashion, we need more base stealers, more guys who look good in their uniforms. That's why people aren't watching! It's not the forest, it's the trees!

People aren't going to watch on TV if it's clear in August that the team isn't likely to make the playoffs. Win a lot of games and people will watch. That should be blindingly obvious.


Be careful of taking Massarotti's rantings and bleatings seriously. He still thinks the Red Sox actually had a chance to land Teixeira.

I'm not sure the marketing study is outrageous as it sounds. Yes, the 2010 team did finish 3rd, but to claim they were never in the race is incorrect. For most of June and early July they were only a couple of games off the pace. They had crippling injuries that season, but even so by August 27th they were only 4.5 games out of first and still had a shot at the wild card. A 50% drop in TV ratings is pretty serious, and trying to understand the root causes of that drop and how much different factors contributed to that drop (team record, economy, market saturation) is money well spent. Especially given that FSG does own NESN.

Now whether the consultant's report was useful or not, or whether the team reacted in the correct manner to that report, are different issues that are both more relevant to the discussion at hand and also well beyond Massarotti's capability to explore.

#115 wutang112878


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:13 PM

Guys, everyone agrees that baseball ops decisions should be made for baseball reasons. No one needs to be convinced of that. Tito and Theo, as department heads, are going to have some exposure to the business side of the org and their needs and wants. Based on what we know, there is absolutely, positively no evidence that baseball ops decisions were made for marketing reasons. All we know is that there was some desire from marketing to do things that help marketing, which is a tension that exists in every MLB team ever.


Correct, we dont have a smoking gun, but using this logic there is absolutely no evidence that baseball ops decisions were never made for marketing reasons. To my knowledge Theo has never come out and black and white said he was never meddled with, he also never said he was indeed meddled with. Based on the Theo's quote and the use of 'pressure' in the exerpt, it sounds like he at the very least felt 'pressured' at times. This becomes a bit of a gray area, what amount of pressure is enough to be considered owner meddling? To make an analogy, in a court of law there is no cirminal case here but there is a chance at a civil case.

#116 Rovin Romine

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:13 PM

Well, I actually think there's an argument to be made that more people might tune into a wild card team with some great players (Pedro) v. a wild card team with a bunch of ho-hum players. I would suppose the marketing report would look at all kinds of factors including that one. If so, one suggestion might have been that a marquee player might bring in more revenue than two lesser players contributing the same or greater WAR. So maybe you can spend more on one, since your TV revenue will increase?

#117 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:18 PM

Guys, everyone agrees that baseball ops decisions should be made for baseball reasons. No one needs to be convinced of that. Tito and Theo, as department heads, are going to have some exposure to the business side of the org and their needs and wants. Based on what we know, there is absolutely, positively no evidence that baseball ops decisions were made for marketing reasons. All we know is that there was some desire from marketing to do things that help marketing, which is a tension that exists in every MLB team ever.


The process which resulted in the hiring of Bobby Valentine is as strong a counter-example as I can possibly think of. They pretty much admitted it too.

#118 The Allented Mr Ripley


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:19 PM

Which is interesting, because I don't know a single fan (even a casual one) who thought that was a good hire at the time.

Edited by The Allented Mr Ripley, 16 January 2013 - 03:19 PM.


#119 TheoShmeo


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:23 PM

The process which resulted in the hiring of Bobby Valentine is as strong a counter-example as I can possibly think of. They pretty much admitted it too.

Who admitted that they hired Bobby for marketing reasons? Where and when? I think they hired him because they lost their minds and thought his "innovative and intelligent approach" would help turn the team around after the disastrous 2011 season. I've never read that it was driven by putting fannies in the seats and eyes on NESN. Maybe you're right but I missed it if so.

#120 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:25 PM

Who admitted that they hired Bobby for marketing reasons? Where and when? I think they hired him because they lost their minds and thought his "innovative and intelligent approach" would help turn the team around after the disastrous 2011 season. I've never read that it was driven by putting fannies in the seats and eyes on NESN. Maybe you're right but I missed it if so.


My mind has been ravaged by rage and regret since they announced the hire, but I am positive that Lucky himself said something along the lines that they wanted a bigger name than Sveum.

#121 curly2

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:33 PM

I thought Tito was a smart guy. He didn't want to write the book with DS for the obvious reasons but was manipulated to do so.


How? Unless Shaughnessy has something to blackmail him with, Tito has free will as to whether or not he wants to write a book and who he wants to write it with.

#122 terrynever


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:45 PM

My mind has been ravaged by rage and regret since they announced the hire, but I am positive that Lucky himself said something along the lines that they wanted a bigger name than Sveum.

This NESN link provides some insight into Lucchino's thinking but of course no one will ever admit Valentine was hired for marketing purposes. This link suggests he was hired to change the clubhouse culture they had found lacking in Tito's final season.

http://nesn.com/2012...battled-former/

#123 smastroyin


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:09 PM

I think people and especially the ownership group understand the relationship between wins and revenue. While I don't think that there was really a "flashy player" mandate, I can see the group not wanting to do a real "bridge year" and instead saying to go out and buy the guys that were needed. I still think it is on Theo who made the choices (and most on the players who failed to live up to any reasonable expectation) and Tito for not really getting them on board. A guy like Lackey is not exciting in any way. Neither is Gonzalez. I guess you could make that argument for Crawford. At the same time, everyone and their brother loved Adrian Beltre with his home run swings and weird phobia about his head, and in retrospect that would have been a better decision than what they did.

I can see ownership mandating (or at least, really pushing for) the last extensions of Lowell, Varitek, and Schilling.

#124 BoSoxLady


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:29 PM

How? Unless Shaughnessy has something to blackmail him with, Tito has free will as to whether or not he wants to write a book and who he wants to write it with.


When CHB proposed the project, Tito's first instinct was to say : "No, not with you." Tito was well aware of CHB's reputation. He must have heard an unbelievable pitch. I'm pretty disappointed by their collaboration.



#125 Pearl Wilson


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:54 PM

One possibility - maybe CHB told Tito he was planning to do a book in any case and Tito decided the best plan would be to co-author.

#126 JimBoSox9


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Posted 16 January 2013 - 09:42 PM

Correct, we dont have a smoking gun, but using this logic there is absolutely no evidence that baseball ops decisions were never made for marketing reasons. To my knowledge Theo has never come out and black and white said he was never meddled with, he also never said he was indeed meddled with.


I am not remotely trying to say that baseball decisions in the Trio era have never been influenced, perhaps even decisively, by factors external to baseball ops. I wouldn't try to say that because it's not true and never has been for any club.

Based on the Theo's quote and the use of 'pressure' in the exerpt, it sounds like he at the very least felt 'pressured' at times. This becomes a bit of a gray area, what amount of pressure is enough to be considered owner meddling? To make an analogy, in a court of law there is no cirminal case here but there is a chance at a civil case.


I hold you in contempt of reason. I'm not going to engage you in how the excepts should be interpreted, because I don't remotely care about that question. The good news is, if you're looking for evidence that baseball ops was not a silo isolated from the rest of the org, you're going to find it. The questions on the table, in my view, are:

1) Do the facts outlined in the newly-released data represent anything beyond the normal, business-as-usual operations of any major international conglomerate?

2) Is a sample valid if it is presented completely without context and specifically selected by PR types hunting for coverage?

The answers are obviously no, and no. The conclusions being drawn by those I've quoted and others are absurdly baseless on not one, but two levels. It's literally right out of the WEEI handbook. Mazz's column (a radio host) only underscores the point.


When CHB proposed the project, Tito's first instinct was to say : "No, not with you." Tito was well aware of CHB's reputation. He must have heard an unbelievable pitch. I'm pretty disappointed by their collaboration.


A equally valid interpretation of the facts is that the more Tito spent alone time with Shaughnessy outside of the Fenway pressure cooker, the more he realized that the reputation is not the man.

One possibility - maybe CHB told Tito he was planning to do a book in any case and Tito decided the best plan would be to co-author.


Next, on Homeland!

My mind has been ravaged by rage and regret since they announced the hire, but I am positive that Lucky himself said something along the lines that they wanted a bigger name than Sveum.


We all have our own way of coping with the Bobby V debacle, and your guess may very well be right. I tend to doubt it because at the time it's not like Bobby was a white-hot name. I feel like it was just this low simmer for a long time and then boom, we just got stung. If it was for PR, wouldn't there have been a little more early sizzle from the candidate? Myself, my theory is close to TheoShmeo's. I believe Bobby's great talent, in corporate-speak, is managing up. I think he got his buddy Larry in a room and sold him a bill of goods. Full stop. The great thing, though, is usually in these situations you've got the optimists crowding around one interpretation and the pessimists around another. When it comes to Bobby, though, everyone's all scattered around because all the possibilities suck.

Edited by JimBoSox9, 16 January 2013 - 09:57 PM.


#127 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 17 January 2013 - 11:09 AM

Edes has a response from Theo about the excerpted comments:

Epstein attended that meeting with consultants in November 2010, and was quoted in the book as being highly critical.

"They told us we didn't have any marketable players, that we needed some sizzle," he is quoted in the excerpt as saying. "We need some sexy guys. Talk about the tail wagging the dog. This is like an absurdist comedy. We'd become too big. It was the farthest thing removed from what we set out to be."

Epstein said that quote should not be construed as a criticism of the Sox owners, as many have done.

“My quote about how 'they told us... we needed sizzle' was in response to a question about the meeting to discuss the consultants' study on NESN ratings," Epstein said. “It was specifically about the consultants' meeting; it was not about ownership."

Epstein took exception to the assertion made in the book that after that meeting, he was responding "to the pressure from his bosses and the sagging ratings" when he traded for Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford, signing the pair for a combined total of 14 years and $296 million.

“There is no direct link between that meeting and the Red Sox moves that winter," he said Wednesday. “I take full responsibility for those moves. It was my job to handle the pressure of a big market and make good decisions."



Theo also tells Gordon that Werner's comment about needing to win in a more exciting fashion was in fact made in jest. Interesting.

#128 HillysLastWalk

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 11:19 AM

Theo also tells Gordon that Werner's comment about needing to win in a more exciting fashion was in fact made in jest. Interesting.


Yeah, this is why I was saying up-thread that the released comments didn't seem inflammatory and this is just a typical over-reaction to out-of-context excerpts. In fact, I thought, when I heard the Werner comments, that they must have been said in jest. In summation: people be crazy.

#129 Otis Foster


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Posted 17 January 2013 - 12:36 PM

I have a clear bias, but there's no way Tito could not have known what a viper CHB was. I'm talking about the CHB in media; in real life, he may be the spawn of Albert Schweitzer, but that has nothing to do with what we're talking about. CHB is incapable of associating with any enterprise that doesn't result in a slur on someone. He uses all the tools of the trade: unwarranted inferences, challenges to his target to prove the negative of his inferences, you name it.


As for the threesome "liking baseball but not loving it" because of focus on business: so what? If I had the choice, Justin Verlander would be in the rotation, but this isn't a fantasy league where we can move assets around without consideration to financial impact. They're businessmen, they took this franchise out of the shitter and got us what we've been waiting for for years and increased value accordingly. So far as we know, they never made a financial decision knowing that it would diminish on-field productivity.

In this town, success on the field and value enhancement are linked. They know it. You need a winner on the field. So, they made or permitted some bad baseball decisions. Who hasn't? What's important is that they've clearly realized it and dumped the losers.

#130 wutang112878


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Posted 17 January 2013 - 01:16 PM

The good news is, if you're looking for evidence that baseball ops was not a silo isolated from the rest of the org, you're going to find it. The questions on the table, in my view, are:

1) Do the facts outlined in the newly-released data represent anything beyond the normal, business-as-usual operations of any major international conglomerate?


This is probably where we have a slight difference of opinion. While I agree that within sports franchises pressure from management/ownership to make certain personnel moves, that might not be the best long-term on the field decisions, this behavior certainly exists and is common. However, my issue with this is 2 fold: 1 I dont believe this is the ideal setup to have sustained success and just because its common doesnt justify the behavior. 2 these owners keep dodging this meddling issue without taking real accountability, IMO anyway, and instead provide reasoning to justify their intentions/actions.

Compare this to Kraft, he has ultimately said that after getting burned by Parcells he meddled a bit with Carroll, didnt have the organizational structure setup correctly, and it was the wrong thing to do for the franchise. Now he is fortunate enough to have Bill and is as hands off as an owner gets in sports. Thats how I think it should be done, owners realize what they wanted wasnt ideal long-term, they change their behavior and take accountability. Kraft is also an unique example because Bill is one of a kind, but I would argue that the Celts are pretty close to this model with Danny as well, and while Danny is a great GM IMO, he doesnt have BIll like status. The Celts ownership were beginning to pressure Danny before the Big3 trades, but now I think they realized his strategy was a good one and they are hands off.

The point is, even though what they did might be common, it doesnt have to be done that way and we have examples where not meddling leads to great things for a franchise. Because of that, I think its fair to critique this ownership group as a result. They certainly arent awful owners, I have been too strong suggesting that, but I think its fair to say that they could be better owners and just because they are good or what they do is common shouldnt shield them from criticism.

#131 SoxScout


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Posted 17 January 2013 - 10:43 PM

Posted Image

Speier on EEI just got a copy of the book and said this antidote was in the first few pages. Francona wore an Arizona hat during the 2004 parade in silent protest because when they were getting on the duck boats they were all supposed to wear a sweatshirt the Sox wanted to market, but the box was missing in the clubhouse. Lucchino then railed out a Red Sox employee saying, "Can't we do anything right?"

#132 Jordu

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 11:25 PM

From reading the full Sports Illustrated excerpt today, two things are clear:

1) This is Shaughnessy's book, framed and narrated by Shaughnessy, with Francona as his main source.

2) Theo will also be a major source for Shaughnessy's story of the Henry-owned Red Sox.

Even the brief SI excerpt featured themes Shaughnessy had been banging on in his column for years: Lucchino is an asshole, Werner is a clueless Hollywood cretin, Henry is ignoring the Red Sox to shower his time and love on Liverpool. You can almost hear him asking Francona, "John Henry spends too much time thinking about soccer, right?"

Edes' interview with Theo that Smiling Joe linked seems to demonstrate that Shaughnessy took Epstein's quotes and set them up and trimmed them to make the points Shaughnessy wanted to make.

#133 dcmissle


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 08:43 AM

I read the SI excerpt, which I think is well written and rings true. It's naturally sympathetic to Tito. Warts are revealed on everyone else, Theo included.

As we sit here today, the club is the polar opposite Werner's vision, composed in the main of unsexy grinders. A question that jumped out to me is, if these guys really don't love baseball, why not sell the club after the incredibly efficient housecleaning by Ben? It's balance sheet perfect; the economy is mending; and among the 4 major sports, baseball is where I'd place my money. Then again, this ownership group has put together a sports conglomerate, and perhaps the trio have come to terms with a period of relative underperformance by the baseball segment.

What also jumped off the page is the fact that the owners were sitting on a bubble not too different than the ones in real estate and, much earlier, tech stocks that had preceded it. At a minimum, they were just never going to hold the pink hats, much less continue the meteoric growth. So Theo's remark -- *This has grown too big for any of us to manage.* -- resonates deeply.

#134 John Marzano Olympic Hero


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:09 AM

I have a clear bias, but there's no way Tito could not have known what a viper CHB was. I'm talking about the CHB in media; in real life, he may be the spawn of Albert Schweitzer, but that has nothing to do with what we're talking about. CHB is incapable of associating with any enterprise that doesn't result in a slur on someone. He uses all the tools of the trade: unwarranted inferences, challenges to his target to prove the negative of his inferences, you name it.


[helen lovejoy]Won't someone please think of Tito?[/helen lovejoy]

Good Grief, the handwringing and caterwauling in this thread about Francona's working relationship with CHB is laughable. You people do realize that:

A. Terry Francona is a grown man, capable of making his own decisions about who to work with
B. Terry Francona had a relationship with Shaughnessey where he'd talk to him nearly every day for seven years. It's not like they were introduced the day before writing started and Francona had no idea who he is.
C. Terry Francona wants to make some cash and get his side of the story out, pairing up with Shank is probably the best way of accomplishing these goals. Who else would Francona write a book with? Massarotti? Bradford?

Francona said that he's read the manuscript seven times, SEVEN TIMES, so if there's something in there that sorta sucks and changes your opinion of the Sox, upper management, any players; tough luck Francona wants it in there. Shaughnessey did not kidnap Francona and force him to say bad things to troll Sox fans.

#135 DLew On Roids


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:16 AM

I've been a member of this community since 2001. Since that time, without fail, every single product of the CHB's keyboard that's been discussed here has been crafted, first and foremost, to suck the fun out of following the Red Sox in service of his own importance and bank account. His entire output is contemptible.

For over a decade, these threads wind up dissecting things like whether Theo's comments about a marketing meeting were directed at the writers of the study or at ownership, but that misses the point. The CHB could have been clear about what was said and what happened, but he chose to maximize sensation by inferring the maximal amount of conflict and personal acrimony.

The CHB is a parasite and a vampire. He doesn't deserve our attention. I'm not suggesting the rest of you shouldn't discuss this book, but understand that you're playing his game just by doing so.

#136 Steve Dillard


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:29 AM

So, is the basic take-away and comparison to the Patriots:

* Organizations and owners behave very similarly during virtually all periods, geared toward maximizing profit, selling the brand in ways that is unseemly to hard-core fans
* the organizations have success when they have superlative generational players (Brady/Manny/Pedro)
* fans then take success on the field and project it into how wonderful the owners are. I can't remember how many times people fawn about the Sox having the best ownership from 2003-2009, and how people fawn over Kraft circa 2001-present.
* it is very difficult, and requires more luck than skill, to get a generational player
* once the on-field success stops due to the loss of the unique generational player (Brady/Manny/Pedro) the same things the owners did before are now viewed as bad

#137 dcmissle


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:00 AM

Adalius Thomas aside, the Pats have never sent big money down a rat hole for an underperforming star. And they certainly have not done this to the point that it strapped them for a multi-year period from a competitive standpoint. Absent the LA Dodger miracle, that's where we'd be.

Also, time and again, Pats fans main bitch has been steering away from stars, particularly in the draft.

#138 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:01 AM

And Adalius Thomas was very, very good in his first two years in NE. He was awesome during the 18-1 season. It was only his last year in NE that he became a distracting turd.

#139 dcmissle


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:19 AM

Beyond this, from an operational standpoint, I know of no instance in the last 13 years in which one of the Krafts has meddled in the football side. Sign or draft this player, hire this coach, and so forth. The contrast with the RS in this respect is pretty stark.

#140 John Marzano Olympic Hero


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:20 AM

I've been a member of this community since 2001. Since that time, without fail, every single product of the CHB's keyboard that's been discussed here has been crafted, first and foremost, to suck the fun out of following the Red Sox in service of his own importance and bank account. His entire output is contemptible.


The guy is a professional (though well-written) troll without a fan base to mock anymore. He's more pitiful than anything.

CHB has lost his power, everyone knows he's a joke (one that can get people riled up still though, see the column about the Texans) both here and nationally. To view him as anything else is to give in to him. His columns are paint-by-numbers or Mad Libs or whatever cliche you want to use. In fact, when I listen to him on the radio (where he isn't that bad) I get the feeling that he doesn't believe half the crap he's slinging. Now he's painted himself into a box (crank) and is playing the role.

#141 Rovin Romine

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:50 AM

I've been a member of this community since 2001. Since that time, without fail, every single product of the CHB's keyboard that's been discussed here has been crafted, first and foremost, to suck the fun out of following the Red Sox in service of his own importance and bank account. His entire output is contemptible.


I think he had a good article following the first WS win. He's also made the occasional good point in his otherwise obnoxious columns. That's the best I can say for him. Even without hyperbole, he's pretty awful.

#142 JimD

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 12:27 PM

Adalius Thomas aside, the Pats have never sent big money down a rat hole for an underperforming star. And they certainly have not done this to the point that it strapped them for a multi-year period from a competitive standpoint. Absent the LA Dodger miracle, that's where we'd be.


It's pretty easy to avoid being hamstrung by a bad contract when the contracts in your league are not guaranteed. John Lackey would not be a member of the Boston Red Sox today if Theo and Ben had that option at their disposal.

#143 dcmissle


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Posted 18 January 2013 - 12:32 PM

It's pretty easy to avoid being hamstrung by a bad contract when the contracts in your league are not guaranteed. John Lackey would not be a member of the Boston Red Sox today if Theo and Ben had that option at their disposal.


Tell that, until quite recently, to the Washington Redskins and, now, to the NY Jets. And nobody put a gun to our heads on Lackey or Crawford.

#144 curly2

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 03:37 PM

From reading the full Sports Illustrated excerpt today, two things are clear:

1) This is Shaughnessy's book, framed and narrated by Shaughnessy, with Francona as his main source.


If that's the case, Tito's a lot dumber than I thought. The great majority of the world will think if this as HIS book. The SI cover says "By Terry Francona." No mention of Shaughnessy.

If there is anything in there that Tito doesn't want, or that is told with Shaugnessy's point of view and not his, that's Francona's fault.

I'm guessing the excerpts will be the inflammatory part of the book, and they aren't that bad. And if there is bitterness, why should we assume it didn't come from the guy who was the best manager in franchise history but was trashed after he left by "management sources?

#145 Jordu

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 08:58 PM

BostonGlobe.com just posted a piece for the Sunday magazine by Shaughnessy about his collaboration with Francona on the book.

It's behind a pay wall, so I'll post a couple of excerpts below. Here's the link: http://www.bostonglo...zEIL/story.html

Our writing process was simple and structured. Terry and I would meet, usually in a hotel coffee shop or restaurant. I’d record a couple of hours of conversation, then disappear for a few weeks to write. When a chapter was finished, I’d e-mail it to Terry, and he’d call back with corrections, clarifications, and occasionally a deletion.

“Do we have to call Heathcliff Slocumb ‘useless’?” he’d say. “Let’s take that out.”

Gone.

“I know you don’t like Schill, but we’re not going to call him a blowhard in my book.”

Fine. Schill is not a blowhard. Not in this book, anyway. We agreed it would be good to soften my wise-guy commentary and let Terry’s voice emerge. As the process unfolded, the manager became increasingly engaged. He stopped seeing me as the enemy. He let me in.


-------------

He was happy with the finished product.

“I’ll deny this if you ever repeat it to anyone, but you’re actually a pretty good writer,” Terry told me.

Here’s what he wrote in the book’s acknowledgments, on Page 346: “If you had told me on September 1, 2011, that by November of 2011, I would be jobless and writing a book with Dan Shaughnessy, I would have told you . . . that this would happen as soon as a 200-pound hog jumps out of my ass.”

Thanks, Tito.

Wish I could write like that.




#146 Edelpeddle

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 06:53 PM

Anyone else find it telling that the Red Sox ownership has not issued one of their standard denial statements by now?

#147 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 19 January 2013 - 06:57 PM

Have to love CHB taking the insults towards Schilling et al out of the book, but still making sure he gets those shots in in some other public forum.

What a goddamn asshole.

#148 Edelpeddle

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 07:03 PM

Have to love CHB taking the insults towards Schilling et al out of the book, but still making sure he gets those shots in in some other public forum.

What a goddamn asshole.


Yeah, CHB calling anyone a blowhard is the pot calling the kettle black. Had he not been involved in this book I definitely would have read it, now I have no interest.

#149 joyofsox


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Posted 20 January 2013 - 12:19 AM

We agreed it would be good to soften my wise-guy commentary and let Terry’s voice emerge



Mighty white of the CHB.

EDIT - Not behind a pay wall for me at the moment!

Edited by joyofsox, 20 January 2013 - 12:22 AM.


#150 941827

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 02:08 AM

“Do we have to call Heathcliff Slocumb ‘useless’?” he’d say. “Let’s take that out.”

Gone.

“I know you don’t like Schill, but we’re not going to call him a blowhard in my book.”

Fine. Schill is not a blowhard. Not in this book, anyway.


And there's CHB in a nutshell. Francona specifically asks him NOT to characterize what he was saying about two players in a specific way, and, forced to remove those lines from the book, CHB insists on finding a way to put them in written form.




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