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The Case of the Purloined Presser

Yeah, the Shank must have seen Good Night, and Good Luck and now he's got a woody to be the heroic journalist fighting the powah and bringing the truth to the people.


Right, because, you know, the biggest issue for Red Sox fans right now is getting to the backstory behind the Theo press conference that was then wasn't.


Are you kidding me? Since this story broke, it's all I can think about. I mean what duplicitous machination is at work ovah there at Yawkey Way? Why this sinistah "dramatic depahtchah from the ownahship's media-friendly style"? Only our Shanktastic hero has the journalistic integrity to get to the bottom of this scandal.


Absolutely. I mean the jejune sportswriter might mistakenly think Red Sox fans would want to read a piece about, I dunno, our new shortstop Alex Gonzalez.


Sure, someone with less savvy than Dan the Man might try to present evidence to back up ESPN's claim that A-Gon's "defense has been Gold Glove quality for the past few years" or how "He has a cannon arm and has thrown runners out from his knees from deep in the hole …"


But, hey, you don't get to make self-proclamations about being "at the top of your profession" by writing about the game on the field. Oh, no, not when there's shit going down like cancelled pressahs.


Oooh, I smell a Pulitzer.


The Case of the Purloined Presser


The PHB takes another one for the team.

And thanks, h.b., for sparing us another "Cuckoo For Coco" reset.

Is there gas in the Truck yet?


I don't know who I dislike more, Alex Gonzalez or CHB. Oh who am I kidding, I barely hate anyone more than Shaughnessy.

Really, really dislike Gonzalez though. Also, ESPN is wrong, Gonzalez is a below-average fielder according to Clay Davenport, and he's a reprehensible SS. Cora not only had a better 2005 with the Sox, but his defense was far, far, far, far, far better.

It's almost like the front office has no idea what they're doing. hmmm...

Gonzalez is a below-average fielder according to Clay Davenport, and he's a
reprehensible SS.

I dunno, one of the premier sabrematricians out there, Dave Pinto, ran some numbers on Probabilistic Model of Range that suggest "that the Red Sox will be making a significant defensive upgrade if they end up replacing Renteria with Gonzalez."

Well, technically having a small wooden wall at SS would be an improvement over Renteria. At least that would block the ball, allowing Lowell or Loretta to run over and pick it up.

I don't see a benefit to signing Gonzalez over our already signed SS in Cora. Also, uhm, why do we need 7 infielders? And why in god's name isn't graffanino playing SS, since he's infinitely better than both gonzalez and cora?

What bombshell do you think Shaughnessy will drop next?
Maybe he's ready to unleash his 10,000 word expose on the Red Sox front-office's alleged "eavesdropping program," you know, anonymous inside sources whispering that Lucchino has been secretly monitoring the phone calls to the bullpen to see if anyone's talking about him?
The Senate Judiciary Committee better clear the docket for that one.

But hey, at least your hometown paper writes about your hometown team.
The NY Times, which is a part-owner of your Sox, is running a puff-job today, pondering the similarities between Kobe Bryant and Theo Epstein.
Imagine opening a Boston paper this morning to find an article pondering the similarities between Brian Cashman and, I dunno, say Terry Bradshaw. Yuck, oily discharge, right?

Off topic: The Soxaholix (and by association all of you) was described as "arcane" by Darren Everson in Slate. I love it.

Kind of makes you wonder what word he meant to use, or if he's just pulling words at random out of an SAT review book.

In any case: much as I hate to admit it, this MFY fan thinks you've got the best baseball blog on the net, hands down. Great work.

"R. Cane" would be a good pseudonym, certainly better than "S.O. Teric."

Shaughnessy is a shitburger. Period.

I love arcane.

Let's shoot for occult.

Sean O -

Yeah, Davenport's metrics HATE el mejor alex gonzalez (obv mejor is subjectivo) - some other figures don't, and Davenport's took a nosedive last season IIRC. I think the key difference in his metrics comes in whether the data relies simply on chances, or whether pitch-by-pitch numbers are utilized. Regardless, I agree that it's not an upgrade over Cora, automatically.

However - Graffanino has absolutely zero ability to glove at SS, and has played something like 60 games there total in his career. He would be a significant upgrade with the bat, but might actually be a downgrade over the 'small wooden wall' (well put) with the mitt.

Good call with the different metrics. Graffanino has a surprisingly good scores for SS, and with 93 games at ss and no particular injury history, his 99 Rate2 is more than enough for me. Let's just say that we give a +/- 5 Rate 2 margin of error for both Gonzalez and Graffanino, so Gonzalez has a 100 Rate2 and Graffanino has a 95. The fact that graffi beats Gonzalez's numbers in every category means I think he's the solution. I mean, obviously he's going to regress a bunch from last season, But if he drops .40 points all around, that's a .280/.320/.410, well better than Gonzalez's numbers. And there's a chance he drops to a .300 hitter, which is a huge improvement.

Most importantly, a Graffanino / Cora platoon means we have a good chance of success, while waiting for Mr. Pedroia. If Pedroia has a plus season at Pawtucket, we can't do anything with him.

I really wanted to see if Graffanino could handle SS ever since we picked up Loretta but it never seemed like the powers that be agreed. I think if he was lead off, we wouldn't miss Damon at all but from what we saw last season, I thought his defense at second was questionable. He's got a hell of a bat though and I'd be interested to see what kind of deal can be made for him if that is the intent.

On another note, does anyone in Boston not lose their lunch whenever Shaughnessy says something? If so, what is wrong with them? If not, how does this guy have a job?

Just a reminder:


It's not mine, but it's a great source of showing Shaughnessy up.

Gonzalez deal is final? I can't seem to find anything that says either that or the deal for Covelli are complete (only that the Indians are waiting on Mota's physical). C'est la vie dans RSN.

Despite the accolades heaped upon A-Gon's fielding skills by his former manager, I can't say I'm too psyched to give this guy $10 mil for two years when he hits around the .225 mark. I would've been content to see Cora and Pedroia give it a go. Either one of those guys gould easily fill the 9 spot (and yes, I keep telling myself that Pedroia is the future, better version of David Eckstein) as well as Gonzalez, and for significantly less $. I'd say give 'em a shot with Graff as a backup (though he fields like elephants fuck) and if it's our glaring weakness at midseason, go get OC from the Angels.

Woah-getting waaaaaaay ahead of myself. When does the Truck leave again?

Very funny strip today HB. Of course, lampooning CHB is like harpooning a white whale at the Holiday Inn swimming pool, but you still did it well. "I smell a Pulitzer" indeed.

When it comes to A-Gon, I'm with NV. T-Graff and D-Ped deserved a shot at SS. But hopefully it will work out. Maybe the idea is to build up a 2-0 lead with great pitching and fielding and then bring Graffanino in as a late-inning offenseive replacement?

Bonus points to whoever can identify the Massachsetts native responsible for these lyrics: "I want to keep my place in the old world. Keep my place in the arcane. Because I still love my parents, and I still love the old world."

Sean -

Yeah, I looked at the Rate2s - it's interesting that his best rate/rate2 came in 2003, where he played the most games at short . . . obviously, small sample sizes abound, which is really the problem with this discussion, unfortunately.

For what it's worth, tango's 'true talent' UZR data lists Graff significantly higher tha Gonzalez (12 v. 7, overall) and also lists Graff as better at the 6 (9 v. 2) - this data only runs from 99-03, though, which leaves out graff's worst year(s) and includes his best, plus the stdev and r values are massive for graff (more than twice that for gonzalez), so grains of salt exist.

Bottom line, for me, is that I can't really support the Gonzalez signing in any direction - although the data makes me a little more comfortable with the idea of Graff at short, I really don't hate Cora there for glove purposes . . . although tango's data really kicks Cora in the sack, by listing him as negative at the 6 (but between Graff and AGon overall). Interesting.

I can't say I'm too psyched to give this guy $10 mil for two years...

I'm seeing rumors suggesting 2mil and change plus a games played incentive that could raise the value of the contract close to 3 mil with an out option for the Sox in 2007.

guessing for the bonus points...jonathan richman?

I actually just read something similar to those #s, hb. I was going off of the initial reports which made me want to swallow my tongue... what would that have made for- an extremely light-hitting left side for $14 mil/ year. Yikes.

Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers are correct Hazel. The song ends. "Bye bye old world, bye bye." Arcane indeed.

word round the campfire is Mota failed a physical...time to restructure the deal. Maybe they'll throw in delcarmen and papelbon and hansen

Dear God I hope you're wrong...

From rotoworld.com:

WIP radio in Philadelphia is reporting that the Coco Crisp trade is being held up because Red Sox reliever Guillermo Mota failed his physical.
Concerns about Mota's elbow or shoulder are apparently providing a stumbling block, but they may not kill the deal. There's been talk of Red Sox reliever Manny Delcarmen being involved, with him maybe replacing Mota in the deal. It's also possible that David Riske could be taken out of the trade. If the Indians can get Andy Marte, they shouldn't let the relievers stand in the way. It's just too good of a trade for them. The Phillies would also come away disappointed if the Crisp deal doesn't go down, as they won't be getting Arthur Rhodes in return for Jason Michaels.

There was a "band" (one guy doing everything) on 4AD in the mid-1980's called A.R. Kane - their 1st 12" EP was a prime bit of My Bloody Valentine shoegaze/noise with some anger and bite behind.

Does anything remind you of Boston (besides the Sox and Mission of Burma) than Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers? Their debut LP w/ John Cale producing still holds up strong after over 30 years. Doubt very much anyone is going to feel the same way about artists like Franz Ferdinand or Fall Out Boy...

All I know is that when I read that King Theo was going to resume his duties as all -powerfull GM I whipped out my copy of Fever Pitch and watched it on my home theater, took the Cristal outta the fridge, popped it and drank while I giggled like a school girl. I don't care what the CHB says or if he feels snubbed at by what the Red Sox did. King Theo is back. Long live the King!

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