Time for a closet cleaning on some issues that surfaced with the Boston Red Sox as we all observed our former general manager abolish another curse and capture another trophy. What is that Dave? Three to your one?
The Red Sox may not bask in the glory of a World Series championship, but they do have an abundance of new titles added to the ever expanding corporate depth chart. The latest (surprise) is another vice president – Frank Wren – as his latest is Senior VP of Player Personnel. Being appointed a VP with the Red Sox is about as significant as being named an assistant manager at a 7-11.
The corporate wheels did not stop at Wren as several other additions to the layer staff was noted. What caught my itty bitty attention span was ex-pitcher Dave Bush – no known connection to Billy Bush – brought into the payroll wagon as Pitching Development Assistant.
Apparently Bush is now under the auspices of Brian Bannister, who is VP of Pitching Development and Assistant Pitching Coach. Bannister was originally hired as somewhat of a metrics guru and when the pitching staff went south was “promoted” to assistant coach. This represented – at least to me – an attempt to meld together metrics into the reality of the mechanics of pitching.
Bannister, a former pitcher, may have had an impact since the staff turned it around when he took on the new pitching gig. Now Bush will be added to the management roster to continue to apply the work of Bannister to the staff.
The Red Sox also made other acknowledgments of the corporate shuffle as promotions, or at least titles, were handed out for those that chose to stay and not go west. But how do you pay for this? Why a Red Sox tradition that I believe dates back to when George Washington chased those pesky Redcoats out of town – you raise ticket prices.
The Red Sox are hiking the tab for a figure slightly under three percent, but the brunt of the increase will be placed on the credit cards or equity lines of those holding a high-priced seats. Now a high priced seat is certainly open for debate when you look at Fenway Park, where virtually all tickets are high priced. Where else can you squander a few hundred bucks for a Loge seat only to see some plays on a video screen since not all the field is in your line of sight?
David Price engaged in a Twitter war with fans over his stellar reputation as a pitching piñata when it counts. Reading the responses Mr. Price was about as successful defending his performances as the Polish Calvary was in stopping the German blitzkrieg in 1939.
Price in the postseason calls for medical standby for a baseball Heimlich maneuver since a choke is the expected outcome. Always pleased to see Jon Lester do what is expected with far greater proficiency and cheaper dough.
Why is the FBI wasting their white collar task force on the shenanigans of foundations? What they should be investigating is the $800,000 buyout the Red Sox gave to catcher Ryan Hanigan. Hanigan’s agent is listed as Tom O’Connell and did he have something on management?
If I was a player and saw that type of option I would crawl across a ground glass covered minefield to get into the O’Connell ledger.
The Red Sox also gifted Clay Buchholz with his option that was in excess of $13,000,000 – do I have enough zeros? Buchholz is being rewarded for essentially showing up the last six weeks of the season. Prior to that, he had disappeared. This is the same as getting a divorce and then hitching up with your ex a few months later for a second marriage.
Since history does repeat itself expect Buchholz to have bouts of success and failure during the entire 2017 season. However, the ultimate goal of another sucker – er, team – will be achieved and Buchholz will undoubtedly sign a three-year sinecure somewhere.
Now the second season begins where the Red Sox can wheel and deal in an attempt to bring a team that is capable of performing somewhat better than the three and out a collection of 2016. Don’t count on it.
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