Not a lot of support for the moves by the Red Sox on radio today. On WWZN Eddie and Jags were both rather down on the Red Sox and the moves they’ve made, complaining about the lack of defense. Tony Massarotti came on the program and said outright that he doesn’t like the moves. It appears Tony is carving out for himself the role as Theo’s harshest critic in town. Tony as a heavy, that’s rather amusing. Eddie continues to hammer away at the Red Sox management, criticizing them for being too PR conscious. How strange is it that the previous regime was always criticized for being inaccessible, now there is the opposite and that gets knocked as well. Eddie says this Red Sox team will set the record for most press conferences. About the moves over the weekend, Eddie says he doesn’t like the Bill James hiring or having his input into deals, and he doesn’t “have a good feeling that the Red Sox know what they’re doing”. Of course, when a caller asked about the Rule 5. draft, neither Eddie nor Jags had a clue what it was all about. After a while with help from Debbi Wrobleski, they figured it out. They reported throughout the day seemingly as a fact, that Cliff Floyd would accept arbitration from the Sox. Over on WEEI, Dale & Neumy talked a lot of baseball as well, being the first to report several moves during the day. Stanton signing with the Mets, possible deals with the Rockies and Mets, etc. They did know about the Rule 5. draft. They also reported Cliff Floyd coming close to agreeing to a deal with the Dodgers if they are able to shed some payroll. This contrasts with WWZN reports that Floyd would simply be accepting arbitration from the Red Sox. We’ll see who is right.
One thing strikes me with the Red Sox and media coverage of them. For years, seemingly all we hear is how they have no prospects in the minors, perhaps the worst farm system in baseball, etc etc etc. How then, do they manage to keep trading minor leaguers for established veterans? Three deals last year, two more this offseason, not a single guy off their major league roster, and they’ve picked up Embree, Howry, Floyd, Walker and now Giambi. Then they also had two more players taken off their system in the Rule 5. draft today.
For the second week in a row, Peter King takes a shot at Manny Ramirez in his Monday Morning Quarterback column. I think he’s being contaminated by being around Boston media members too much. I sent Mr. King an e-mail attempting to reason with him on this topic. I’ll let you all know if I get a response from him.
Sports Business Daily today awarded its 2002 Sports Industrialists of the Year Award to Patriots Owner & Chair Robert Kraft and his son, Patriots Vice Chair Jonathan Kraft. The press release on this event reads in part:
“The Krafts, who operate the Kraft Group, which owns the Patriots, MLS Revolution and Gillette Stadium, were recognized for the on- and off-the-field successes of their sports properties, overseeing the opening of the NFL’s first privately-financed facility, aggressively and creatively marketing and promoting their sports operations and their contribution to league and community affairs.
“The Krafts’ storybook year is the result of nearly a decade of strategic planning, sound financial management and masterful marketing,” said Marcus DiNitto, Managing Editor of The Sports Business Daily. “The Krafts have taken the Patriots, previously one of the most moribund professional franchises in sports, and made them into a thriving $1 billion sports and entertainment property producing record revenue. By running their sports operations with modern-day business principles, the Krafts have significantly increased the value of their investment, while delivering a quality product and experience for their consumers.”
Previous winners of the award include David Stern, Paul Tagliabue, and ESPN President George Bodenheimer.
Eric McHugh looks at Bill Belichick’s 33 career appearances on Monday Night Football. David Pevear looks ahead to tonight’s game, and notes that Patriots fans no longer dread their team playing in these games. Jonathan Comey tries to figure out the playoff picture, including how the Patriots can clinch a playoff berth next week. ESPN.com has a few different previews and articles looking towards tonight on its MNF page.