Dan Shaughnessy: Taking a dump in your mouth one column at a time

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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It's just self-preservation. He knows that he's old, lazy and not insightful. Which really leaves him with little choice -- his career is now defined by trying to come up with takes that will allow him to keep his job. He's figured out a way to insulate himself from criticism, because he always has refuge in acting as though he's the one not afraid to tell it like it is and so any criticism is a cover up.
 

bigq

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Imagine having this platform, this amazing job, and this is what you do with it? Rile up the haters three times a week with embarrassing dogwhistle word salads?
It's effectively the written equivalent to F&M sports talk radio. I guess foolish hot takes drive engagement but it's a turnoff to me.
 

nattysez

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Are we OK as a society with using the term "pink hat fans" as an insult? That is definitely a term I've used in the past, but it feels a little misogynist, no? I don't see a lot of dudes wearing pink Sox hats. I'm not trying to start up a campaign to cancel Shank on this basis, but reading it today made me realize it might not be the most enlightened term to use in 2023.
 

tims4wins

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Are we OK as a society with using the term "pink hat fans" as an insult? That is definitely a term I've used in the past, but it feels a little misogynist, no? I don't see a lot of dudes wearing pink Sox hats. I'm not trying to start up a campaign to cancel Shank on this basis, but reading it today made me realize it might not be the most enlightened term to use in 2023.
Also, do they really "rely on an idiotic song"? I mean yeah the song is campy and whatever but does it really draw people to the stadium? It gets played in the bottom of the 8th. No one is sitting through 3 hours of baseball just to be able to sing Sweet Caroline.
 

Kliq

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There are a lot of old cynics out there that agree with Shaughnessy. There are plenty of people that romanticize the good old days and are easily frustrated with the way things are today, and Shaughnessy is the voice of those people. To us, he comes across as very predictable and basic, but I think a decent amount of the Globe readership still agrees with him on a lot of things.

I don't take his writing seriously, but I find his suggestion that the Red Sox are the fourth-most popular team in Boston strange. For starters, I don't think that is true--if I were to hazard a guess I'd say the Bruins are, but the weirder thing is to view that as a problem. If the Sox have slipped in popularity in Boston, it has to do largely with the success of the Celtics and Bruins at the moment were they are both about to launch very competitive playoff campaigns, and less to do with the Red Sox struggling. It's a GOOD thing for Boston sports fans that our teams are good, yet here it is framed as a problem.

I get pining for the halcyon days of the 60s and 70s and 80s when the Red Sox were the biggest thing in town. Of course, the Sox were not particularly popular pre-1967, which uncoincidentally lines up closely with when Shaughnessy would be coming of age. But largely if the Sox aren't the most popular team in Boston anymore, that is largely because football has usurped baseball in general pop culture. It's not because the Red Sox haven't been competitive because the opposite is true.
 

Two Youks

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The Boston area has been exceptionally blessed in the sports department for the last 20 or so years. So, I find it strange that not only does Shaughnessy continue to have a job spewing discontent for all those that would listen, but that there's apparently enough of an audience for him and others of his ilk to thrive here.

I will never understand engaging in this kind of misery porn. If sports are no longer entertaining or fulfilling for you then... find something else? Life is short, and there's far better things one can do with their time living than creating or consuming his kind of negativity.
 

JohnnyTheBone

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Dan has sucked forever. I'm old enough to remember reading Shaughnessy when he was the fresh face on the Globe scene. Even then, he was a massive step below the likes of Montville, Ryan, Gammons, and McDonough. He was never good. Dan is a mediocre wine that quickly turned to vinegar.
 

GoJeff!

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Dan has sucked forever. I'm old enough to remember reading Shaughnessy when he was the fresh face on the Globe scene. Even then, he was a massive step below the likes of Montville, Ryan, Gammons, and McDonough. He was never good. Dan is a mediocre wine that quickly turned to vinegar.
I think it is more tragic than that. He's a strong writer, maybe the strongest of that group. But along the way he completely lost his enthusiasm for sports, and the bitterness became a larger and larger part of his writing. And now that's pretty much all there is.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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He's super bitter and sucks and has for a long time.

That said, he's not wrong about this team.
That’s my take too. The Sox played a shit game after a disappointing offseason. What do you want him to write about?

And FTR I think it is a big deal that the Sox have fallen to fourth in the city’s sports consciousness. You could get tickets for Opening Day tickets for $14 yesterday on the secondary market. When was the last time you saw that? This should worry John Henry and company a lot.
 

pinkhatfan

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Are we OK as a society with using the term "pink hat fans" as an insult?
I'd prefer it if we weren't. I'm a woman. And a fan. And I like my pink hat. There is really no need to use gendered terms to denigrate certain parts of the fan base. But I don't really expect that kind of introspection from Shaughnessy.
 

jose melendez

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I'd prefer it if we weren't. I'm a woman. And a fan. And I like my pink hat. There is really no need to use gendered terms to denigrate certain parts of the fan base. But I don't really expect that kind of introspection from Shaughnessy.
I can still call you "pinkhatfan" thought right. Because it's your name?
 

cornwalls@6

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Along with the misogynistic implications, Shank's use of Pink Hat is just another example of what a tired, lazy, played out hack he is. When was the last time it was edgy/current to use it as a pejorative? Like ten years ago? I'm surprised he didn't manage to get a Springsteen or Godfather reference into that column(and I love them both, but enough Dan).
 

54thMA

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That’s my take too. The Sox played a shit game after a disappointing offseason. What do you want him to write about?

And FTR I think it is a big deal that the Sox have fallen to fourth in the city’s sports consciousness. You could get tickets for Opening Day tickets for $14 yesterday on the secondary market. When was the last time you saw that? This should worry John Henry and company a lot.
Yup, me as well.

And they are absolutely fourth in the city's sports consciousness.

Up thread it was mentioned the Bruins are fourth; seriously? I'd argue they might be #1, Bruins fans are incredibly passionate about the team, they bang out the building every night, the atmosphere is electric, Celtics games have the same atmosphere, another passionate group of fans.

The Patriots are now a middling team, 9-8, 8-9, rinse, lather, repeat, the owner talks a good game about how not making the playoffs is unacceptable; talk is cheap.

I had a friend of mine text me asking if I wanted to go to opening day, nope, hard pass, my girlfriend reached out to me as well as her company had tickets up for grabs as well, told her thanks but no thanks.

This is a major sports market and we're stuck with a minor league talent of a team, it's embarrassing to see how this team is run, home grown stars are allowed to walk and are replaced with middling at best talent and we're all just supposed to go along with it.

Replace the GM all you want, he's not the one who controls the purse strings, that's 100% on ownership.

If this ownership is not committed to winning a championship, then sell the team and let someone take over who is.
 

jose melendez

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I’d add that even if you accept that they couldn’t keep Mookie, the return they got was inadequate. One decent major leaguer, and two, at best, question marks three years later, one of whom is gone. Yeah, they got rid of Price too, but Mookie for not having rich people spend money and one middling ml talent is something they should catch enormous heat for.
 

E5 Yaz

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The Boston area has been exceptionally blessed in the sports department for the last 20 or so years.
20 or so? 1980-2000 has chunks of 2000-2023 in its stool.

I think it is more tragic than that. He's a strong writer, maybe the strongest of that group.
Shaughnessy on his best day was never in the same league as Leigh Montville
 

pk1627

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That’s my take too. The Sox played a shit game after a disappointing offseason. What do you want him to write about?

And FTR I think it is a big deal that the Sox have fallen to fourth in the city’s sports consciousness. You could get tickets for Opening Day tickets for $14 yesterday on the secondary market. When was the last time you saw that? This should worry John Henry and company a lot.
This argument is flawed. You can get tickets for every baseball game on the secondary market for every game. In almost every one of these games, someone is going to list a bleacher seat for $20 or less. I got a ticket on StubHub in 2018 - when we had the great Mookie Betts and the team won 108 - for $8.

Attendance for opening day was 36,000.
 

Koufax

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I've been to 2 Bruins games in my life and basically pay no attention to hockey until the playoffs. (This year is just a little different because they are so damn good). I've been a season ticket holder to the Sox for about 30 years. The Sox are 4th in my consciousness. I am not going to any games this year - I've sold off every ticket.
 

GoJeff!

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Shaughnessy on his best day was never in the same league as Leigh Montville
That very well could be true. I don't remember Montville's stuff that well.

But he was a much better pure writer than Gammons or Ryan, both of whom are vastly more enjoyable in large part due to their continued enthusiasm. (They also bring other reporting skills/game knowledge to the table, but that wasn't ever Shaughnessy's plus talent).
 

Van Everyman

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My biggest problem with Shaughnessy's sullen outlook on the Sox and Boston sports is that, well, it's been so much worse for so much longer and he (and some posters here) should know better.

Like, I'm sorry @54thMA but the Sox were in the ALCS like 16 months ago -- I'm sorry you had to pass on Opening Day and, yeah, I'm not sure exactly what is going on with their roster management recently either, but that team was very exciting. The Pats were in the playoffs 2 seasons ago and despite all the dysfunction in the hunt this last year. All the "embarrassing" and "talk is cheap" complaints reek of entitlement in the purest sense of the word -- you literally are saying that as a fan you are entitled to better teams.

Also, Shaughnessy's column today complaining about the Sale contract is him trying to have it both ways. Like, I wish they had waited on Sale's health before inking him to that huge deal too. But you can't be like, "They're cheap! They're not willing to spend money to take risks!" and then complain literally a day later that the big contract they signed their star pitcher to has been terrible.

All that said, yes -- Shaughnessy is definitely articulating a feeling that a lot of teams have that these teams *should* be better and that the ownership/management of the teams is what's holding them back. Me? I find the state of both franchises a little frustrating but I also know how much worse it could be. Because it was, in my lifetime, for both teams, and it was absolutely horrible.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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This argument is flawed. You can get tickets for every baseball game on the secondary market for every game. In almost every one of these games, someone is going to list a bleacher seat for $20 or less. I got a ticket on StubHub in 2018 - when we had the great Mookie Betts and the team won 108 - for $8.

Attendance for opening day was 36,000.
36000 people were there on Thursday? Sure they were. A lot of them were dressed as seats I suppose.

And you got a 2018 Opening Day ticket for less than face?
 

54thMA

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Like, I'm sorry @54thMA but the Sox were in the ALCS like 16 months ago -- I'm sorry you had to pass on Opening Day and, yeah, I'm not sure exactly what is going on with their roster management recently either, but that team was very exciting. The Pats were in the playoffs 2 seasons ago and despite all the dysfunction in the hunt this last year. All the "embarrassing" and "talk is cheap" complaints reek of entitlement in the purest sense of the word -- you literally are saying that as a fan you are entitled to better teams.
Don't feel sorry for me for passing on opening day tickets, feel sorry for the people who went and froze their nutbags off to witness that opening day shitshow.

Like, I'm not talking about the team 16 months ago; great, they made the playoffs and got hot, beat the Yankees and Tampa, were up 2-1 on the Astors but then ran out of mojo, their bats collectively went silent and that was that, a nice little run.

How does that compare to the team they have now, you yourself are questioning the roster construction as are countless others, they are in a highly competitive division and look like a last place team.

I've been a Red Sox fan since 1967, Bruins since 1969, Celtics since 1967 and Patriots since 1968.

Entitled?

I've witnessed quite a bit in that time, some of it good/great, some of it bad/heartbreaking; all I ask is management makes every effort to field a competitive team, like Celtics and Bruins management has done.

And yes, talk is cheap, so is resting on your laurels and expecting fans to line up like sheep and support a team.

I'm "entitled" to a quality product for what it costs to attend sporting events in this city.

It will get ownerships attention if fans vote with their wallets and stop going.
 

pk1627

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36000 people were there on Thursday? Sure they were. A lot of them were dressed as seats I suppose.

And you got a 2018 Opening Day ticket for less than face?
I was at the game Thursday. Not completely full but pretty much. The attendance in the box score is what I said. The clubs were very full because of the temp. Packed.

I am saying the least expensive secondary ticket price for any game is not indicative of anything. I think the low price you mention was more about weather than some unimportant theoretical question of which franchise is fourth.

Opening Day in 2018 was in Tampa.

PS. I’m looking for a ticket to todays game. Rain is clearing and temp expected in the 60’s. Lowest price is $32. A non-bleacher seat about $50. Did the Sox suddenly double in popularity?
 
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John Marzano Olympic Hero

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PS. I’m looking for a ticket to todays game. Rain is clearing and temp expected in the 60’s. Lowest price is $32. A non-bleacher seat about $50. Did the Sox suddenly double in popularity?
Yes. That’s exactly how it works.

And I just found a seat for $24. So maybe they’re losing popularity as we speak.

But no, you’re right. Everything is great at Fenway. Everyone loves this team and thinks that they’re 1000% on the right track.
 

Van Everyman

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My kid’s friend regularly gets tickets online right before first pitch for like 10 bucks. You just have to be willing to wait it out.
 

CoolPapaBellhorn

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Also, do they really "rely on an idiotic song"? I mean yeah the song is campy and whatever but does it really draw people to the stadium? It gets played in the bottom of the 8th. No one is sitting through 3 hours of baseball just to be able to sing Sweet Caroline.
If it doesn't draw people in (I believe it does), it absolutely keeps them there until the late innings. The park has noticeably cleared out after the 8th for years.
 

tims4wins

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If it doesn't draw people in (I believe it does), it absolutely keeps them there until the late innings. The park has noticeably cleared out after the 8th for years.
That's fair about people not leaving until Sweet Caroline. For a period of time they didn't play it unless the Sox were winning. I think they changed it specifically for the reason you mention.
 

Kliq

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The dislike of Sweet Caroline stems from the stupid logic that fans shouldn't be chanting "good times never felt so good" if the team is bad or losing. Which is stating that fans can't have fun at the ballpark unless the team wins, which is a really toxic attitude towards sports.
 

OurF'ingCity

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The dislike of Sweet Caroline stems from the stupid logic that fans shouldn't be chanting "good times never felt so good" if the team is bad or losing. Which is stating that fans can't have fun at the ballpark unless the team wins, which is a really toxic attitude towards sports.
1000% agree with this. Getting mad that other people like singing along to a song, regardless of how you personally feel about that song, never made sense to me.

I don’t personally think “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” is much of a song either, but I guess somehow it’s fine for people to sing along to that one but not Sweet Caroline?
 

pk1627

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Yes. That’s exactly how it works.

And I just found a seat for $24. So maybe they’re losing popularity as we speak.

But no, you’re right. Everything is great at Fenway. Everyone loves this team and thinks that they’re 1000% on the right track.
Whatever. I’m loving it. Got a $20 great seat 10 minutes before the game. Fun game. Weather is gorgeous
 

pk1627

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We just hope you will sit there with your arms folded during Sweet Caroline if the Sox are still losing.
I’m indifferent to the “tradition.” I will say that there have been some games where the entire ballpark is into it big time. Game 7 against Cleveland in 2007 they got that huge double play and the stadium was singing as loud as they could.
 

Van Everyman

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I’m indifferent to the “tradition.” I will say that there have been some games where the entire ballpark is into it big time. Game 7 against Cleveland in 2007 they got that huge double play and the stadium was singing as loud as they could.
Awesome. BTW if it wasn’t clear I was kidding. My kids look forward to singing it every time we go and that’s good enough for me.
 

nattysez

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Officially looking forward to his next column now.
Here's a preview: Chris Sale's is the worst contract this side of Jonnu Smith, you can't consistently win in baseball giving up 8 runs a game, the bullpen will die if they continue to be called upon this much, etc.
 

Van Everyman

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Here's a preview: Chris Sale's is the worst contract this side of Jonnu Smith, you can't consistently win in baseball giving up 8 runs a game, the bullpen will die if they continue to be called upon this much, etc.
The parts he’s transparently already written will be glorious tho.
 

pk1627

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Yes. That’s exactly how it works.

And I just found a seat for $24. So maybe they’re losing popularity as we speak.

But no, you’re right. Everything is great at Fenway. Everyone loves this team and thinks that they’re 1000% on the right track.
29,000 at Game 2. I estimate most had a ton of fun and stayed into the ninth, despite the fact that the team is in big, big trouble because a guy got a $20 ticket in loge on SeatGeeks