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Jarrod Saltalamacchia has until June

Apr 6, 2011, 3:00 PM EST

Saltalamacchia_Jarrod

One of the things I’ve been watching in the early going is who the scapegoat will be in Boston if things don’t turn around quick. The easy choice — and leader at the moment — is Jarrod Saltalamacchia.  He fits for so many reasons. He’s more or less unproven. He’s been given a starting job more or less by default. His backup is a fan favorite. As a catcher he’s a handy person to blame for both offensive woes (his own) and pitching woes due to his calling the game (even if the pitching stinks and the game is called from the dugout; no one said the scapegoat business is fair).

While the search for scapegoats can be nasty business, I’m kind of agnostic about it with a team like the Red Sox because they’re managed by smart people who tend not to overreact. If Salty is skewered, it will likely be after he’s had every reasonable shot to prove himself, not because the press and talk radio went nutty.  And based on Jon Heyman’s column today, that seems to be what’s happening:

A Red Sox person said they weren’t concerned yet about Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who went 0-for-10 with five strikeouts to open the season against his old team, the Rangers. Word is, he has until June to prove he belongs as the starting catcher.

That’s a pretty decent amount of time before a contender looks at other options.  In the meantime: get hitting, Salty.

  1. bobwsc - Apr 6, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    jeez. and Papelbon will continue to have excuses made on his behalf as he serves up meatballs. Theo’s neck should be on the line for some of those gross contracts tied to underperforming players (Lackey, Dice-K, Beckett’s extension).

  2. wurst2first - Apr 6, 2011 at 4:01 PM

    Is anyone else totally weirded out by Salty’s headshot? The face, neck and torso all seem to come from three different people. Is this what the Sox are doing now, playing Frankenstein to gain an advantage?

    • BC - Apr 6, 2011 at 4:19 PM

      Maybe the guys that did this photo also did this one?

  3. screename529 - Apr 6, 2011 at 4:13 PM

    I hope he doesn’t get hitting. It would be hilarious to see them try to use Varitek every day.

    • bigharold - Apr 6, 2011 at 6:10 PM

      It certainly would be fun to see Capt sucker punch back.

      And, if not the Ol’Capt, .. what happens if he doesn’t hit after 2-3 months? I’d guess he gets another 2-3 months?

      • tadthebad - Apr 7, 2011 at 10:02 AM

        bigharold – are you Fack Youk brethren?

      • bobwsc - Apr 7, 2011 at 10:05 AM

        how was it a sucker punch when gayrod was asking for it?

  4. BC - Apr 6, 2011 at 4:16 PM

    This guy came up with Atlanta, went bezerk for a short stretch and enabled the Braves to grab Texiera for a bit. Since then, it’s been sdfgsdiugasdsdizdfgzxdghshsdhsljsh. No clue about this guy.

  5. Ace - Apr 6, 2011 at 4:34 PM

    I nominate Carl Crawford. Precisely because there were no expectations for Salty, it’s really hard to hold him responsible for Boston’s offensive woes. Crawford, on the other hand, was paid a tremendous sum of money to be a centerpiece of this offense, and is currently batting (and slugging) .133. Of course, I fully expect him to turn things around, just as I expect the Red Sox to start winning any day now. But until one of those things happens (and I suspect there’s some correlation between the two), I think Crawford is the goat.

  6. BC - Apr 6, 2011 at 4:43 PM

    Maybe he needs to change his name to Jarrods. Add the “s”, might change Karma.

    • spudchukar - Apr 6, 2011 at 6:12 PM

      BC, what do you have against “esses”? Is it a phobia or something?

      • BC - Apr 7, 2011 at 9:37 AM

        Yeah. My four phobias are bees, needles, heights and “S’s”. Note that the other three phobias also end in “s”. See, it multiplies on itself! Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!

  7. baseballisboring - Apr 6, 2011 at 5:10 PM

    Eh…Tek’s not really a ‘fan favorite’ nowadays. He’ll always have a place in my baseball heart, but I don’t think anyone’s really clamoring for him to play.

    I mean, it’s hard to tell who the scapegoat will be after 4 games, we don’t know who’s going to play well yet. But I’m sure it’ll be somebody more high profile/making more money than Saltalamacchia…but it’s gonna get turned around anyway so it’s irrelevant.

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