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Checking in with this morning’s Red Sox hyperbole

Apr 8, 2011, 8:54 AM EDT

McDonald bag.bmp

I know a lot of Red Sox fans in that way you know people on the Internet. Twitter and message boards and stuff. Most of them are understandably bummed about the team’s start, but almost none of them are wallowing or anything. The consensus is “this is straight shite, but they’ll turn it around.”  It’s a sensible view. The “panic” people refer to at times like these is really media panic. Talk radio and columnists and stuff. And I don’t think they’re really panicking per se, as opposed to just trying to outdo themselves in characterizing how bad things are.

I don’t listen to Boston talk radio, sadly, and my guess is that’s where the best stuff will be today. Hosts trying to top one another in framing the apocalyptic nature of it all while their producers try to find the looniest loon they can find on the phone lines to put on the air.  I mean, if your wish is to get on the radio today, call in to the sports squawk station and say that you think Terry Francona should be fired. You’ll get your air time.

The columnists are doing their part too, even if they’re not quite as nutty. Here are the two best I’ve seen so far. First, Steve Buckley at the Herald, who is proposing — maybe seriously? maybe not? — that the Sox should cancel all the pregame pomp and circumstance today. No flyover, no introductions, no ceremonial first pitch. Just baseball, because we’re all too depressed to do anything else. Or something.  His best line:

The 2011 Red Sox are starting to look like the 1988 Dukakis for President campaign. As in, high hopes followed rather quickly by a disastrous tumble. (Picture Sox GM Theo Epstein riding in the little tank.)

Mr. Buckley: I followed the 1988 presidential election. I knew the 1988 presidential election. In a way, it became a friend of mine. Mr. Buckley, this team is no Michael Dukakis.

Now, over to Dan Shaughnessy, who quite frankly disappointed me with his failure to truly go after it. Most of it is sensible if a bit obvious. I liked this one though:

Any way you look at it, the Sox haven’t been the same since John Henry bought Liverpool FC

I can’t decide if that’s a tongue-in-cheek reference to something that really doesn’t matter but people chatter about anyway or if Shaughnessy is really going with the notion that John Henry’s buy-in to English soccer represents some kind of distraction that has competitive implications for the 2011 Red Sox.  If it’s the former, that’s kind of funny. If the latter: dude, they bought Liverpool in, like, October. I’m going to go out on a limb and say nothing good or bad has trickled down since then.

Ah well. Maybe the columnists will bring their really top-grade stuff on Sunday if the Sox drop the first two of the Yankees series.  Until then … Panic.

  1. Jonny 5 - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:11 AM

    The team is more like the Donald Trump for president “thing” right now. But I’m pretty sure it will soon morph into the Obama for president campaign we last saw. There will be “change” and people will “believe” And then when it all wraps up we’ll be reminded that they’re just another baseball team picking the willing pockets of the fans. Can the Bosox borrow some wins from later in the season to use now? Because this whole political analogy could really work well then.

  2. fenwaywest - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:12 AM

    There is no panic in the nation right now. Most fans think playing at home will light the fire and bring about a series victory over the Yanks.

    If however, the Yanks sweep the Sox there will be full fledged panic like the scene on the movie airplane when they announce they’re out of coffee.

    • derpdederpdederp - Apr 8, 2011 at 11:44 AM

      “There’s no reason to become alarmed, and we hope you’ll enjoy the rest of your flight. By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?”

      yeah, i can see that kind of panic breaking out

  3. uyf1950 - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:16 AM

    I’m certain I don’t need to state the obvious but I will in any case. As most posters on this site know I am NOT a Red Sox fan. I respect them yes, but a fan that’s something else. Having said that I think it’s equally important to say I don’t believe the Sox’s fans are in panic mode and I now most Yankee fans expect the Sox to pull out of their dull drums (I just hope in not in the next 3 games).

    The next to 10 days however are very important to the Sox with this 3 game series against the Yankees, then a series against the Rays and then another against the Jays. These next 10 games will be very telling for the Sox and their fans…and to be honest a .500 record during that time isn’t going to cut it. That’s just my opinion.

    • uyf1950 - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:21 AM

      Sorry, my fingers missed the “k” in the 3rd line of “now” should have been know.

    • rsnorth - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:33 AM

      Red Sox will take .500 on the home stand. Even just a win to get off the schneid. Then, with ormal breathing restired, the climb towards respectability begins.

      • rsnorth - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:34 AM

        I can type respectability but not normal or restored.

      • uyf1950 - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:36 AM

        You had the same problem I had. I goes with the territory. No big deal.

      • uyf1950 - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:39 AM

        rsnorth – the bad part if the Sox only play .500 ball during that time they could find themselves 8 to 10 games out of 1st place by then. That wouldn’t be an easy mountain to climb.

  4. BC - Apr 8, 2011 at 9:37 AM

    I can’t think of another team where if they stink on ice, fans go bezerk, and if they’re reaaaalllly good, fans go bezerk, more than Red Sox fans. It’s fun to watch.
    As a Mets fan, my mindset – whether the team kicks butt or is horrible – is always, OK, what’s going to go wrong next?

    • Utley's Hair - Apr 8, 2011 at 12:16 PM

      BC is the typical “The glass used to be full, but now is only half empty because there’s a hole in the bottom” kind of guy.

      • BC - Apr 8, 2011 at 3:23 PM

        Of course I am. I’m a Mets fan.

  5. paperlions - Apr 8, 2011 at 10:27 AM

    I am surrounded by Red Sox fans here in CT, and not a single one shows anything approaching panic or doubt…to a man/woman, each is disappointed with the start, but thinks this team has too much talent to truly be this bad.

  6. tribester - Apr 8, 2011 at 1:13 PM

    Craig, thanks for clarifying the ‘panicking’ stories. A panicked media makes a lot more sense than panicked fans.

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