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Peter Gammons called out in the Boston Globe

Apr 20, 2012, 10:30 AM EDT

Peter-Gammons

Media spats tend not to interest most people, but this one is pretty notable: Peter Gammons, Boston icon, called out in the pages of his old paper, the Boston Globe:

During his weekly appearance on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s “Felger and Massarotti’’ show last Wednesday, Gammons asserted that Globe reporter Bob Hohler should reveal the anonymous sources from his bombshell story last October on the factors contributing to the Red Sox’ historic collapse. Those factors, according to Hohler’s sources, included manager Terry Francona’s personal issues and a fractured clubhouse in which a clique of pitchers were drinking beer and eating chicken during games.

It was an absurd suggestion.

That’s Chad Finn of the Globe taking Gammons to task.

Finn notes that Gammons has since come off the notion that Hohler should reveal his source, but he still believes that the story was unnecessary and irrelevant. Which, sure, many people might feel that way. But as Finn notes, those people tend to be Red Sox fans who don’t necessarily want to hear of discord on their team, legitimate or cooked up or otherwise.

I follow a ton of reporters and columnists. Most of them keep the proper journalistic distance from the teams they cover. Some of them, I hate to say it, seem to become fan boys or apologists over time.  I don’t think Gammons is that way, but in this instance he does seem to be hitting the wrong notes, and I think Finn was right to note it.

  1. lardin - Apr 20, 2012 at 10:36 AM

    Are you talking about, Peter, An unnamed club executive told me, Gammons? Pot this is Kettle, Kettle this is pot..

  2. aceshigh11 - Apr 20, 2012 at 10:44 AM

    It would be career suicide for any reporter to betray an anonymous source’s trust.

    I’m not a big fan of anonymous sources to begin with, but as far as modern journalism goes, we’re stuck with them, so that’s the paradigm reporters operate under.

    Hohler would never get another scoop in his career if he named names.

  3. Jack Marshall - Apr 20, 2012 at 10:45 AM

    Gammons, a couple of years ago, quoted an anonymous source that Ted Williams once used a corked bat…using random hearsay to smear the memory of a man Gammons claimed to respect and admire, and whose integrity as a player is a major aspect of his reputation. No confirmation, no chance of defense from Ted’s Head, and pure rumor. I gave up on Peter after that.

  4. deathmonkey41 - Apr 20, 2012 at 10:52 AM

    Gammons is just a shill for ESPN to push their Red Sox propoganda. If anyone criticizes the Red Sox in any way, they send their little wrinkled pitbull out to attack.

    • lardin - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:00 AM

      He doesnt work for ESPN anymore. He works for NESN and for the MLB network. But you are correct in that he’s a shill for MLB, and a complete homer for the Red Sox on NESN.

      • deathmonkey41 - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:24 AM

        I thought I saw them interviewing him recently.

      • spudchukar - Apr 20, 2012 at 12:02 PM

        Interviewed or not he left ESPN, and has no official role with the EastCoast Sports Network.

      • deathmonkey41 - Apr 20, 2012 at 1:08 PM

        As you can tell, I try to avoid ESPN whenever I can. My greatest nightmare is that when they have Yankees games on ESPN, Chris Berman is going to be in the booth.

  5. drewzducks - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:00 AM

    As an employee of NESN, aka the Lucchino propaganda machine, his actions should come as no surprise to anyone. Having read his Globe notes column for years anyone could surmise that he has become a ” throw everything against the wall and something is bound to stick” type of reporter. Anyone wanna buy a brick?

  6. jacflash - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    I see Gammons’ point here, and properly understood, he’s hardly defending the Red Sox — rather the opposite. Hohler’s article was as much a hit piece as it was news. The backstory behind it would also be news — news that would almost certainly embarrass the Sox’ current ownership — and the argument that it should be reported has a lot of merit.

    • lardin - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:10 AM

      In this context, I see your point. But not just as it applies to the Hohler story and Tito. If someone was to write the story, the story should be about why this ownership group, with the exception of Tek and Wake, trashes every major star on their way out of the organization. Nomar, Manny, Orlando Cabrerra, Derek Lowe, Johnny Damon? Are they that image conscious that they trash players on the way out as a way of dealing with the negative publicity? This is a story I would want to read.

    • 18thstreet - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:25 AM

      I think Hohler’s piece was terrific. Francona was given every opportunity to rebut those unnamed sources; surely, the front office was given opportunities to rebut them on the record, too.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 20, 2012 at 12:10 PM

        Francona was given every opportunity to rebut those unnamed sources

        So you wanted Francona to A, refute a negative (that he didn’t do X, Y, and Z) and B, have to defend, in public, issues of his private life?

        No thanks

    • deathmonkey41 - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:25 AM

      Is that you, Peter? Larry?

  7. paperlions - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    I would be ironic if Gammons truly thinks this story was “unnecessary and irrelevant”, because that describes nearly everything Gammons has done during my adult life (last 25 years). All he ever reports is baseball gossip, no analysis, no baseball first reporting, no breaking stories…just gossip.

  8. WhenMattStairsIsKing - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    Gammons made a bad call-out, he took it back, the end. Mistakes happen.

  9. nfugitt - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    Does he even need to ask? It was obviously ownership leaking the info.

  10. skeleteeth - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    Why is Howard Bryant never mentioned here?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 20, 2012 at 12:10 PM

      Because 90% of his articles are race baiting, and the other 10% are just pure trash?

      • skeleteeth - Apr 20, 2012 at 12:47 PM

        Straight up Craig’s alley!

    • deathmonkey41 - Apr 20, 2012 at 5:37 PM

      My unnamed sources tell me he likes to put puppies in a sack and light them on fire.

  11. deadeyedesign23 - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:22 AM

    I dont’ have a problem with that story so much as the ones about Tito and his marriage and his alleged pill addiction.

  12. smithwood488 - Apr 20, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    The unnamed source is OBVIOUSLY ownership. More specifically it is Lucchino. Not sure why Gammons would even utter such a request. Unless he “wants” Hohler to name Lucchino – because perhaps Gammons and Lucchino are spatting about maybe how bad this year’s team really is – or how bad the Bobby V. hire has turned out.

  13. mybrunoblog - Apr 20, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    What is really being forgotten here’s that very quietly the U.S. Treasury has put Peter Gammons face on all of our $20 bills. Think I’m kidding? Go look and get back to me.

  14. a125125125 - Apr 20, 2012 at 12:33 PM

    Does anyone ever read Gammons’ column in Baseball America? I play a game to see how many often he mentions the Red Sox…it isn’t a fun game because he does it every week. Even when he’s writing stories about the Dodgers, Joe Torre, a minor league prospect….you name it…..he ALWAYS shoehorns the Red Sox in some how. It’s ridiculous.

  15. cintiphil - Apr 20, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    I lived in Boston in the late sixties and in the seventies. I always thought Gammons was loser, in addition to being a homer. He had some good comments from time to time, but I just thought he was too full of himself and thought he was another Royko or someone like that.

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