BSMW Group Project – Worst Boston Sports Columns

Before I left on vacation at the beginning of the month, Jim Donaldson of the Providence Journal wrote a column that was simply staggering in its stupidity. The column was titled Has marriage cost Tom Brady his competitive edge? 

It got me thinking…where does that column rank in the annuals of just bad, absurd, off-base Boston sports columns of the last few years?

There are no shortage of candidates. You’ve got Tony Massarotti’s column while at the Herald last year (“Nobody Wins This One – 5/15/08)  in which he called New England “the official home of yahoos, hero worshipers and gutless suck-ups.”

There’s Gerry Callahan’s over-the-top farewell to Manny Ramirez on August 1, 2008, (“No Dodging it: Manny Ramirez just a bad, bad man”) which can be summarized as “Manny hates kids with cancer.”

We can go with Bob Ryan’s claim that the Celtics might just barely be a playoff team after aquiring Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett. (Title for Celtics far from a done deal – 8/2/07) “That’s it? Someone actually thinks this Celtics team will win the East and contend for the championship? Really?” The column ends with “They might even make the playoffs.” The only player the Celtics added before the season started was James Posey.

Going back a little further, we’ve got the column Dan Shaughnessy wrote which essentially caused Theo Epstein to quit – Let’s iron out some of this dirty laundry (10/30/05)

That’s without touching anything from Bill Burt, Ron Borges, Steve Buckley, Nick Cafardo, Peter May, Bill Reynolds, Jeff Jacobs or even Buddy Thomas.

John Tomase’s Rams Walkthrough Tape report doesn’t really fit here, as it was reported as news, not an opinion column, so it doesn’t fit here. We’re looking for columns only here. Let’s keep it fairly recent, maybe the last 10 years or so.

Your assignment is to submit further columns – with links and excerpts if possible, and post them in the comment section below.

There will be prizes given away as part of this project. Everyone who submits a comment suggesting a column or voting on a suggested column will be entered in a giveaway for one of two AX MEN (Mondays 10:00pm on HISTORY) roadside kitsclick here for a photo of the prize - they’re pretty sweet.

You need to enter a valid email address in the comment form email field (won’t be displayed to others) to be eligible for the prize.

We’ll leave this open through the end of the week, and then we’ll publish a list of the top columns as suggested and put them to a formal vote.

  • Michael

    My entry is a 1998 column where Shaugnessy implores us to get behind NY and root for the Jets in the playoffs.
    This only a year after Parcells bolts to the Jets, and then takes Curtis Martin with him.

  • Peter

    Any column by Steve Buckley. Has he ever written anything good?

    • Mitch

      The column that Buckley wrote several years ago about Dana Wingate, the Harvard ballplayer who was the first batter in the history of Fenway Park, is one of the best pieces of sportswriting I’ve ever read.

  • http://boston.com Dirk Diggler

    That article on Eric Van from a few years back

  • Anonymous

    Jackie MacMullan’s column on Tom Brady’s “Body Language” always stuck out to me as just awful:

    Body betrays a mental slump

    With that in mind, it’s time to state the obvious: Tom Brady’s body language in Sunday night’s loss to the Denver Broncos was downright troubling. There were moments when New England’s franchise quarterback looked like he wanted to be anywhere but Gillette Stadium, and that’s something that I previously would have considered unfathomable.

  • Phil

    I think that Donaldson’s column (full disclosure, I didn’t read it after viewing the headline) is the leader in the clubhouse. I sent Art Martone, the ProJo sports editor, an e-mail asking him to replace Donaldson with a more competent writer. I’m not expecting a reply.

    • Phil

      I owe an apology to Art. He sent a respectful and lengthy reply. Good for him.

  • http://www.patriotsdaily.com Scott

    Anything by Bob Halloran on the subject of Bledsoe v. Brady.

    • http://www.patriotsdaily.com Dan

      Good one. Halloran compared Brady to a sneeze guard at a buffet.

  • shawno

    The column by Shaughnessy when he called David Ortiz a useless bag of you-know-what.

    • Bruce

      That was actually on a TV appearance. Two of them, in fact. I don’t think he ever put it into a column.

      • shawno

        my bad then.

        Either way it makes Shaughnessy the worst in general.

      • ObjectiveBruce

        Oh, so now it’s a television appearance? The story used to be that it was on radio, on whatever the call letters were at the time at what used to be the Big X. I’ve been waiting for years for someone to produce tape but it hasn’t happened yet. It’s kind of like Ted’s last game; if everyone who claimed to have been there had actually been there, the joint would have been banged out.

        • BSF34

          Hi Dan.

        • Bruce

          Sorry OB, he said it twice. First on Sports Final (TV:

          WBZ’s Sports Final had Steve

          Shaughnessy said they had better not sign that “Ortiz guy”, as “he is a sack of you know what”. He said he’ll jump on McDonough’s bandwagon if they sign that guy.

          and then a few weeks later on the radio (WWZN)

          Though on the sidelines, Antoine

          David Ortiz, officially signed by the Red Sox yesterday. Shaughnessy had very harsh words on the subject of Ortiz a few weeks ago on Sports Final, (and called him a “sack of you know what” on WWZN today)

          I appreciate you sticking up for Dan all over the internet, OB, but I can assure you I’m not making these up. I heard them both with my own ears.

        • ObjectiveBruce

          Thank you Bruce.

          I’ve been asking others to cite to a specific instance but they couldn’t or wouldn’t.

          While I disagree on such things as your use of SporTView, I have no reason to doubt your credibility.

          By the way, I don’t defend Dan. I defend perspective, common sense, and treating paid mercenaries as paid mercenaries.

  • bholmes

    On a day when they could have had impact players David Terrell or Koren Robinson..they took Georgia defensive tackle Richard Seymour, who had 1 sacks last season in the pass-happy SEC and is too tall to play tackle at 6-6 and too slow to play defensive end. This genius move was followed by trading out of a spot where they could have gotten the last decent receiver in Robert Ferguson and settled for tackle Matt Light, who will not help any time soon.
    – Ron Borges

  • Beaker

    I know of two Shaughnessy columns during the Celtics/Lakers finals last year. One was one of those “talking to a dead guy” columns with Red Auerbach. Leigh Montville did it much better. The other was whether Celtics fans would be upset if the team won in LA.

    I also submit Jim Donaldson for a lifetime low achievement award. Still looking for his first original thought.

  • http://soxanddawgs.com Ian

    Can we just put in there the column that we know the CHB will write about Schilling’s retirement.

  • Nopointe

    Any column where Borges offered his opinion on how the Pats did in the draft.

  • Lance

    I think Mike Mulddon’s article was pretty awful about “classless” Belichick:
    http://www.eagletribune.com/pusports/local_story_036062703.html

    He sounded like a hysterical housewife who bragged about having a husband associated with Madoff then left him when he lost his money.

  • John Kelley

    How about Buckley’s column today ripping Davey Johnson of all people? Or a few weeks back when he ripped Mike Lowell for saying he was hurt by the Sox pursuing Texeria. I mean, he only took less money to re-sign here and played hurt for as long as he could when he could barely walk. I mean, what right did he have to be hurt?

    Then there’s the column from Jim Donaldson a couple of years back who ripped Michael Vick for giving the fans the finger after he was booed. Donaldson cited how he himself had sat stoically while he received similiar abuse he was getting from fans while he was covering a Providence Friars game.

  • BSF34

    You could nominate Hector Longo for a lifetime achivement award in this category. Usually his dumbest ones are where he does his NFL predictions the day after the schedule is released. Expect another one when the schedule comes out this April.

  • Beaker

    Another classic from Jim Donaldson. He so crazy!

    http://www.projo.com/celtics/content/projo_20050516_16jdcol.22ec631.html

    • John Kelley

      Wow. That column was borderline racist.

      • mandb97

        I wouldn’t say borderline it was. He makes it sound like an Amos N Andy radio skit. What a meathead.

  • sjc

    This gem by Ron Borges after the Pats-Raiders snow game in 2002. The title sets off the tone:

    Ruling Keeps It From Being A Just Win, Baby on Jan 20, 2002

    He then digs up quotes from Ben Dreith saying that the “tuck rule” reversal was a horrible call (despite the fact ruling was correct).

    • Tony

      And do you know the worst part of it? Borges, and several of his ex-colleagues at the Globe STILL believe to this day that the call was incorrect (Shaughnessy, Ryan, and the ultimate gasbag, Charles Pierce, all believe to this day that Walt Coleman was wrong). Borges, for his part, continues to maintain his brilliant analysis, now 7 years old, that “if it looks like a fumble, then it’s a fumble, period.”

      It’s really quite amazing.

      • sjc

        I know. They know nothing about football especially since the call was OVERTURNED, not a bad call on the field without clear refuting evidence like so many times in the last Super Bowel. Coleman saw the call was wrong and reversed it because the rule and the visible evidence was clear. And this exact call is not an uncommon occurrence in football games.

  • topofyormomsprofession

    I remember this particularly bad Shaughnessy column…just bits and pieces though. Something about snowbirds, Warren Zevon, Lou Gorman, Animal House? Can anyone help me here?

    • Nopointe

      thats the one with the college kids tying up Boston traffic with Uhaul trucks right?

    • http://PD Chris W.

      I seem to remember a mention of Red Auerbach, too. And Bruce.

  • Teddy’s Missing Mojo

    Some great nominees here . . .

    My nominee would be the column submitted by Kevin Paul DuPont in the Globe the morning before a Game 7 (I think), complaining that Joe Thornton should resign the captaincy of the Bruins because he wouldn’t speak with the media.

    • Wilson Tisdale

      Totally disagree. The column was dead on accurate listing the reasons why Joe wasn’t captain material. The playoff choke against Montreal being Example A. It wasn’t about the media.

    • Mike

      The article bested the headline.

      Plus, he was right. Joe had an obligation, not to the media, but to his teammates, to take the heat and answer a question. But we know that Joe isn’t a leader and Dupont was right.

      • mandb97

        Both Mike and Wilson are completely wrong. He did not speak because O’Conell did not want him to due to the injury. Dupont was the baby because he could not deal with the fact the Bruins were taking a Belicheckian approach to the media.

  • John

    Didn’t Bob Ryan write a coulmn at the Final Four breaking down the matchups of two teams who weren’t even playing each other?

    • http://PD Chris W.

      Yup. He had the big boys of LSU (Big Baby) and George Mason going head-to-head, but they never played each other.

  • Tony

    I’m kind of partial to Bill Burt’s “this was all Pedro’s fault” column after Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS. When the whole of the baseball world was, rightly, blaming Grady Little for the Sox blowing that 3-run lead, Burt laid the blame squarely at the feet of the man who had thrown over 100 pitches (his effectiveness limit at that point of his career, and everyone knew it) and allowed just 2 runs through 7 innings against one of the best lineups in baseball, on the road no less.

  • NAOP

    Mazz explaining what’s wrong with the latest generation of ballplayers:
    “The young guy? Between stints in front of his Wii and Xbox 360, he spends most of his time listening to his iPod. He shows up at the ballpark early and leaves late, working on his body before, during, and after. Along the way, he tells us about such things as his dietary habits, sleep habits, and daily routine, mostly because we stand in front of his locker and ask him.

    His mistake comes in believing that somehow those things matter to anyone else. Here’s something the young player never does: He never asks about you, the way any grounded person would. He never asks you for a movie tip or restaurant recommendation, the way someone like Bret Saberhagen might. He never talks about his failures as candidly as David Cone.”

    http://www.boston.com/sports/ot/2009/01/a_large_dose_of_reality.html

    • Fred West Lynn

      “He never asks you about you…”

      Pretty much says it all.

      Here’s how I read that impressively succinct phrase of self-importance:

      “WE are the story. You may have just won the game, but what does that matter when I have a hot restaurant tip or a really thoughtful movie recommendation? Worse, because you — Mr. Smug and Young Athlete — don’t ask me, then I can’t put it in my column and enlighten all my readers, too. You selfish, heartless, swine!”

  • Tiki

    Here are my two, one recent and one from the dustbin.

    Tony Mazz on Boston Sports Injuries:
    http://www.boston.com/sports/columnists/massarotti/2009/03/the_bostonians_guide_to_sports.html

    I can’t find a link to this one but Clark Booth’s column for the Pennysaver about Pedro being a bigger prima donna than Ted Williams was just brutal.

    • Tom

      I completely agree Tiki. This was terrible. It’s interesting how often these guys try to be funny and it falls completely flat. Maybe that’s a sign they should stop trying to be funny. My comment on this is comment #5.

    • Classless

      Ech. That injury column Mazz did screamed amateur.

  • Jon B

    Another candidate from Bob Ryan. The day after the Celtics hoisted Banner 17, Ryan wrote an article calling Pierce’s speech “embarrassing and self-indulgent.” Even worse, he erroneously claimed that the 17th banner is “conspicuously larger” than the first 16 banners.

    http://www.boston.com/sports/basketball/celtics/articles/2008/10/29/little_rhythm_but_no_blues/?page=full

    That statement about the banners is completely false, and if it were true would imply that the current Celtics ownership is trying to downplay the achievements of past Celtics greats. I called out Bob Ryan but received no response and I also e-mailed his editor, who responded to me but never issued a correction.

  • Jeff

    Bob Halloran in the Metro, about 3 years ago.

    He took the feel-good story of the autistic high school basketball team manager, who came into the game and kept hitting 3-pointer after 3-pointer, and decided to play contrarian by viciously ripping the coach.

    • HighWireNickEsasky

      Lots of good submissions for worst column, but this one should win because of the target. Any garden-variety bad columnist can rip a pro athlete or coach, but it takes a world-class d**chbag to go after a high school coach, and by extention, a disabled teenager.

    • Classless

      Picking the opposite side and arguing for it takes no discernible talent. That is why Halloran is a boob.

      • Jason Coyote

        All true, but it would make ol’ Bob the best on his high school debate team.

    • tmurph

      Yeah I remember that one and thinking what a self-important prick. His stuff is generally pretty vile.

    • Bruce

      Here it is, though it’s not on the Metro site anymore. I actually found it on PatsFans.

      Coach is Not the Saint He was Portrayed to Be

      If you saw the story of the 17 year old autistic boy who scored 20 points in a high school basketball game recently, you know how inspiring the story is. But you might not have noticed what an evil hypocrite the boy’s coach is.

      Coach Jim Johnson called the experience one of the greatest moments he’s ever had in sports, but he’s lying when he says it. Winning a division title mattered more to him than seeing one of the most loyal and dedicated kids he’s ever been around get a chance to play and to shine–otherwise, why did wait to put Jason McElwain into the game until there were just over four minutes to play and his team was up by 20 points? Obviously, if Greece Athena was in a nail-biter, McElwain would never have played. McElwain’s dream meant nothing to Coach Johnson. Absolutely nothing.

      The dreams of an autistic and immensely popular kid meant nothing to him in the first game of the year, the 12th game of the year, and every other game of the year when he failed to let McElwain play–or else McElwain would have played long before senior night. But Coach Johnson couldn’t take the chance that if he played McElwain, Greece Athena might have lost somewhere along the way, then that precious division title might have slipped through his greedy little fingers.

      Coach Johnson is a disgrace. He’s patting himself on the back right now thinking he gave the kid an opportunity, but in point of fact, he robbed McElwain of endless opportunities to play, to feel proud and to feel like a normal kid who fails and falls and gets back up again. Clearly, McElwain can play a little bit. He was 6-for-10 from 3-point range. Maybe a good coach, a kind coach, a coach with his kids’ best interests at heart could have found two minutes here or there throughout the course of the season to let everyone on his team play–even the autistic kid with the deadly aim from beyond the arc.

      By the way, where was the hero of the home finale two days later? Back on the bench. Greece Athena was playing in the sectional tournament, and Coach Johnson basically told McElwain, “You had your moment kid. Now get out of the way, we’ve got games to win.”

      Gotta win, you know. Forget the kids, and all their hard work. “No child left behind” doesn’t apply to sports. Leave ‘em all behind. Unless the can run the pick’n’roll, who needs them?

      I wish Coach Johnson had noticed how many fans packed the gym that night after they heard that there was a chance that “J-Mac” might get in the game. They didn’t care if Greece Athena won. They only wanted to see their friend, their classmate who inspired them with his work ethic, positive attitude and genuine kindness on a daily basis-play. They rushed the floor and lifted him high above their shoulders. They didn’t celebrate a 79-43 win and a division title. They celebrated a person.

      I don’t think they’ll ever lift Coach Johnson up on their shoulders.He’s not the kind of person worth celebrating.

      • http://PD Chris W.

        Wow. Stunning. McElwain got national acclaim for that moment and will cherish the memory forever. Way to crap on a dream.

      • Jason Coyote

        I only wish this column had been forwarded to Coach Johnson along with ol’ Bob’s home address so a just revenge could have been executed.

  • Angry Old Bastard

    Can’t find any links but I’ve got 2 nominees from Kevin Mannix. The infamous, “Belichick is Pond Scum” column…..and The other column he wrote saying the Pats should be charged with “consumer fraud” because they didn’t play the starters in a freeking pre season game……This is a real mind bender,Bruce. …..I know there are even MORE foolish columns I’ve read, but now that I’m trying, I can’t recall them……

  • Angry Old Bastard

    Thanks to the person who just mentioned Clark Booth….How about the one Booth wrote were he ripped Bill Belichick for running a fake field goal against the Rams. (It went for a touchdown in a CLOSE game) Booth went on and on saying it showed “poor sportsmanship” gave it as a reason Belichick is “disliked” throughout the league…..It was unreal…..couldn’t find a damn lnk to that one either

    • Clinton Tyree

      Booth clearly had no understanding of why everyone around the league loved that play: they were tired of Mike Martz’s “I’m an Offensive Genius, and I Know It Act.” Belichick had to have called that play to tweek Martz.

      • Angry Old Bastard

        well maybe.. but I think he ran that play because he was,ya know…TRYING TO WIN THE GAME…If I remember right the score was fairly close at the time. It wasn’t like a garbage time touchdown or anything like that. I still shake my head over what Booth wrote. It’s the NFL not pee-wee football. The hatred some of these guys have for Belichick boggles the mind.

        • Clinton Tyree

          No doubt that was the #1 reason: Win the Game. And you’re right, it wasn’t the Flutie Drop Kick in a meaningless game.

          I just meant that everyone loved the call because the self-proclaimed offensive genius couldn’t see it coming.

        • Rich

          This was the game they were supposed to get blown out because the secondary was in shambles (Troy was playing DB). BBs strategy was to score as much as possible to keep up with Bulger getting hot (he never did). The tweaking was also probably in his mind.

  • EC

    Anybody remember this oldie but baddie from Shaughnasty
    http://www.boston.com/sports/football/patriots/articles/2007/01/06/after_research_yahoo_is_on_board/? The icing on the cake for me was that Dan plagiarized some of the column from Charlie Pierce’s column in Slate 3 years before http://www.slate.com/id/2093642/

  • http://BSMW Corner Blitz

    Great topic Bruce. Off the top of my head with no linkage, Borges 2001″Belichick lied” carrying Bledsoe’s water. Will Mcdonough’s look at me piece in 97 “Parcells vs. Kraft” in which he completely and unethically was the story as he carried Parcells’s water and tried to humiliate Kraft.Most recently you have Borges again, supposedly a knowledgable boxing scribe, dismissing Manny Pacquiao’s chances against De La Hoya as laughable and foolhardy. Nevermind that Pac-Man was a great fighter and that de La Hoya had looked lackluster for the last 6 fights. We should have known that ol’ ronnie had an agenda as it seems that Golden Boy Productions had contracted Mr. Borges for some pr work and water carrying, which Ronnie is the(Don) king of. Ron Borges has no objectivity when it comes to money or access, which is a big deal when you are a journalist.Plagiarism? I’m not so sure of that.

    • Tony

      You’re spot on about the McDonough piece in ’97. That was shameful, “look at me, I’m the story” journalism at its worst. In fact, I believe Will the Shill’s opening line in the article was: “This is my story, and I’m sticking to it.”

      Nice.

      In his twilight years, McDonough was a shameless butt-boy for Parcells, John Harrington and Jeremy Jacobs. He was not a journalist anymore at that point.

      • Classless

        Oh, but he was everyone’s FRIEND…

  • ben

    Shaughnessey on his daily 1 mile run. While it doesn’t showcase embarrassing biases and flat out wrong info like these others, he hoists upon the public a column purely celebrating himself . . . and for a relatively minor accomplishment.

    • Classless

      I missed that one. Shouldn’t a 1 mile run be a warm up?

    • Jason Coyote

      Occasionally I spot ol’ Dan on his morning jaunt while I’m driving in to work. Should I attempt a wrong turn one of these days?

  • Big D-man

    Borges’ Patriot columns for The Globe were just total crap. I remember that Seymour column well. But Donaldson’s about the married Tom Brady turning into a Nancy-boy is the worst I’ve seen in a while. But I admit, there is a lot of material from which to choose.

  • Tom

    Eric Wilbur said towards the end of the 2007 regular season that the Red Sox had no hope of winning the World Series. I can’t find the original article, but here is FJM taking it apart.

    http://www.firejoemorgan.com/2007/09/hey-red-sox-time-to-hang-it-up.html

    • Classless

      I’m sorry, but a blogger (and a terrible one at that) shouldn’t even get acknowleged.

  • ben

    Googling the CHB’s daily mile column it appears as if he worked it almost word for word into the book on his son.

  • http://masshysteriasports.blogspot.com DaveR

    Does it have to be a piece by a Boston-based writer? If not, I’d like to nominate Gregggggggg Easterbrook’s frantic declaration that the 2007 Pats-Colts matchup was nothing less than the final Armageddon between Good and Evil.

    It was like a six-year-old’s screamed treatise about how a 7:00 bedtime is a violation of his constitutional rights and a Stalinist pogrom by his parents…. Epicly mentally unbalanced. To the point where even mild-mannered Le Anne Schreiber the Ombudswoman bitch-slapped him in print over it. (To which he replied that it was “satire”…. which is a familiar theme in these entries, isn’t it?)

  • Tony

    DaveR….I think we could start another thread devoted entirely to Spygate! Many local writers didn’t exactly cover themselves in glory during that time period, when the most overhyped “scandal” in history was front-page news practically every single day.

  • http://www.jonvssports.blogspot.com Jon

    For me, the great rivalry is between the Herald’s Hat Trick of Patriots Hating (Mazz’s “Yahoo” diatribe, Tomase’s BS walkthrough column and Howie the Hostage’s despicable gloating over the Brady injury) and any column by CHB. Ever.
    Globe vs Herald. To the DEATH.

  • AK

    Kevin Manixs column after Milloys release.
    Michael Gees column in 2003 about how the Pats should lose a game before the playoffs started.
    Marriotis column asking for an investigation on the Cassel trade.

    • Classless

      Michael Gee was a guilty pleasure of mine.

  • Michael Gee

    Finally, a nomination!!! Thanks for remembering AK. For the record, I by no means believe that was my most misbegotten column. I award that dishonor to my 1996 prediction it would take several years for Tiger Woods to hit his stride on the PGA Tour.

    • Lance

      Umm a column on golf? Yeah I guess technically it’s a sport. Must have missed that one somehow. Makes you wonder where the outrage was.

    • AK

      Your are welcome! I didn’t think that was the worst column. Just listing some bad ones that I remembered. I don’t go that far back in the US (didn’t get here till ’98) to know about your 96 column. Kudos to you for nominating it.

      Another bad one I recall was from that Worcester T&G guy (Ken Powers i think was the name) that got fired for plagarising from Peter King. It was a column about how big a meanie BB was for chewing out a member of the press for asking some moronic question. I think it went something like “Its a sham of a a sham of a sham…” I remember Bruce lambasting the column.

  • Angry Old Bastard

    …..in another “group” catagory….I’d like to nominate those columns written after the Red Sox won their 1st World Series that lamented, “The Red Sox aren’t the same now” I believe several Boston scribes went that route. ….Here’s a quote from Shank Shaughnessy back then:

    “When you have a goal for this long and you finally realize that goal, it’s kind of like the song: Is That All There Is? It’s going to be great, short-term, no question. I do think the long view is something will be lost”

    well Shank, I’ve seen the, “long view” ….what was it we “lost”?????

    • Jason Coyote

      AOB, you totally missed his point because you’re right, we haven’t lost anything. The way ol’ Dan actually meant to write that paragraph was, “When I have a goal for this long and I finally realize that goal (publishing COTB and the 27 addendums that followed), it’s kind of like the song: Is That All There Is? It’s going to be great, short-term, no question (short-term people still bought the book to remember why they were angst-ridden in the first place). I do think the long view is something will be lost (the continued profits from my book sales).”

      • Angry Old Bastard

        LMAO!….right on,Jason

  • Classless

    Someone stole my thunder already about the Greg Easterbrook column concering the “good vs.evil” Colts/Pats matchup, so I’ll give you this abortion (granted, it was a blog entry):

    http://www.fannation.com/si_blogs/for_the_record/posts/38641-boston-backslide-to-mediocrity-is-return-to-familiar

    This guy should just quit life. Period.

  • http://hockeyfightproductions.blogspot.com hockeyfight

    I nominate Tony Massarotti’s infamous “pink hat” article:

    (Hey fake fans: Make like Damon and leave – Friday, June 2, 2006)

    “The Red Sox win some and lose some, though they succeed more than they fail. They still stir the passion in most of us and they still fill the summer, and they leave us wanting for more. And while the newbies prance around and act like they’ve never been there, the rest of us do the only thing we can.

    We wait to get our seats back.”

    I love the first person plural in which Massarotti includes himself proudly with the “rest of us” true Boston fans. 2 years later, Tony stepped out from their ranks and ripped them as “yahoos, hero worshipers and gutless suck-ups” in his post-spygate apology article.

    There’s nothing more impressive than versatility.

    • http://www.umpbump.com Sarah Green

      I wholeheartedly agree, second the motion, and would like to nominate any and ALL pink-hat columns. It seems like every (male) columnist in Boston has had to weigh in on this weighty subject at least once.

  • AK

    Michaels Wilbons column calling for someone to intentionally take out Brady’s knee during the 16-0 season. I’m suprised nobody threw that back in his face when Bernard Effing Pollard took his advice to heart.
    Didn’t Jamele Hill (spelling?) write something similar about KG and the Cs last year?

    • Classless

      Was that a column or a PTI on air quote?

      • AK

        I think he wrote it for the Washington papers he writes for.

  • Brian

    Plenty of good nominees here – I’ll add one from CHB the morning after Game 7 against NY in ’04 where his entire column was devoted to reminding everyone in his usual haughty tone that the Curse (which he made up, BTW) wasn’t officially over until they won the WS. He hardly mentioned at all that they had just completed arguably one of the greatest comebacks in sports history, or winning the last two games in Yankee Stadium, or Tim Wakefield’s emotional moment on the field after the game. Instead, the column was all about him and his stupid made-up curse.

  • http://bsmw Fred Derf

    Anything by David Scott or Charlie Pierce. Are they different people?

  • Chris

    Bill Burt wrote a column several weeks ago claiming that Matt Cassel was a top 5 or 6 quarterback in the NFL. That has to be one of the most absurd examples of homer-ism I’ve seen recently.

  • Steve from Yellowstone

    Two come to mind that haven’t been mentioned yet.

    One one from Shaugnhessy around 2002 or so. Late in a Sox game, Jose Offerman is put up to bunt in the 8th or 9th inning, with two men on first and second and one out. Offerman refuses to bunt, swings away, and hits into a game killing double play. Sox lose the game. Next day Shaughnessy comes out with this very over the top rambling ripping Offerman to shreds, using lines like “Take for example the piece of junk that is Jose Offerman”, calling him a “Bowser” and other potential racist terms…

    The other one is from Ron Borges round that same year, between the 2001 and 2002 Pats seasons. It was a column about how the Pats were doomed to failure because they were not hitting home runs with their late draft picks. Yeah, they hit a home run with the #1 that year (Seymour), the #2 (Matt Light), and *cough* drafted a little known guy called Tom Brady in the 6th round a year earlier and they’re doomed to failure over this subject!??!

  • Matt

    For me it was the NFL notes column written some years ago by Nick Cafardo where he gushed on and on about the homecoming Tedy Bruschi was going to have when he went back to his alma mater, Arizona State, to play the Cardinals at Sun Devil Stadium. The only problem of course was that Bruschi actually went to U of A.

    Cafardo is by far the worst sportswriter in Boston and has been for years. He’s lazy, ill-informed, and worst of all boring.

  • Mike

    Easterbrook comparing the Colts to small-town, American, wholesome, apple-pie goodness and the Patriots to the devil.

    Equally as lame: his “claim” that the article was tongue-in-cheek even though there were zero hints in the actual article.

    That is the dumbest column I ever read. Second would be his article about Belichick being suspended for a year.

    • Tony

      I disagree….his dumbest column was suggesting, a few days after Matt Walsh turned over NOTHING NEW that the NFL didn’t already know, and made Easterbrook (and the rest of the hyperventillating morons down in Bristol) look like the fool he is, that Belichick should resign as Pats’ coach, “because an honorable man would do just that…..and it’s for the good of the game” (I’m paraphrasing, but it may even have been written in the same article that you’re referencing above).

      It was his last ditch attempt to make Spygate seem like something serious, when it had become completely evident that it was nothing but a media-hyped non-story, with Easterbrook the leading hype’ster.

  • Mike

    Oh, Jemele Hill’s article comparing Celts fans to Nazis.

    That was classy.

    One of the best ever? J.A. Adande’s column praising the C’s and Red for the team’s role for doing just that.

  • Copious Note Taker

    Ken Rosenthal – Oct 14, 2008 – “Will Non-White Free Agents Shun the Red Sox?”

    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/8670984/

    Steve Buckley – June 10, 2002 – Red Sox should set their rotation so Derek Lowe can pitch game 1 of the playoffs

    http://www2.bostonherald.com/sport/sports_columnists/buck06102002.htm

  • BSF34

    I haven’t seen this mentioned yet (a lot of posts, so it’s possible I missed it if it was) but how about Will McD’s “Bag Job” column on the sale of the Red Sox?

  • Dan Riley

    To give ballast to this little exercise, here’s something from Kristoff in the NYT yesterday:
    “So what about a system to evaluate us prognosticators? Professor Tetlock suggests that various foundations might try to create a “trans-ideological Consumer Reports for punditry,” monitoring and evaluating the records of various experts and pundits as a public service. I agree: Hold us accountable!”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/26/opinion/26Kristof.html?_r=1&em=&pagewanted=print

    So, Bruce you’re doing the Lord’s work here.

    BTW, the column that still makes my head spin–Ryan’s on the state of Connecticut when Kraft was doing his let’s take the Pats to Hartford thing (full disclosure here–I was born in Mass but raised in the Nutmeg state). The article would have been fine if he’d stuck to the political and financial shenanigans, but he spun it into this wildly insane anti-Connecticut tirade. You’d think he was writing about North Korea. To make matters worse, it was at a time when the only respectable sports of any kind being played in all of New England was in Podunk, Connecticut.

    • Angry Old Bastard

      what I remember most about that time period was Eddie Andelman SCREAMING every 2 minutes, “IT’S NOTHING MORE THAN A BIG TIME MONEY GRAB,DALE!..IT’S NOTHING MORE THAN A BIG TIME MONEY GRAB!!!!!….Andelman also repeated again and again how, “IF THEY MOVE TO CONNECTICUT I’LL NO LONGER BE A PATRIOTS FAN!…..why not Eddie? ..wouldn’t they still be the NEW ENGLAND Patriots?…..one of the few thing WEEI ever did right was can that pompous ass

  • Juan Genge

    Way back when Callahan wrote for SI and before McGwire/Sosa, Gerry wrote a love letter to Manny saying how great he was for Cleveland and he would be the one to break the record.
    I can’t find the link but he also spent months on the show (back when it was 2 hours) Giving Manny a giant wet kiss on the mouth.

    • Bruce

      I guess that would be this one:

      Son Of Sammy

      • Juan Genge

        Thanks. I guess my timeline was off.

  • Rich

    I would include any of Buckley’s “if you don’t like it, LEAVE!” columns, where he bashes athletes for having an opinion. Foremost among these is the article where he ripped Mike Lowell for thoughtfully expressing an honest opinion about how he felt watching the Sox drool after Teixeira. From Lowell’s quotes, he did this matter-of-factly and without either malice or hand-wringing, but Guardian Buckley still took the chance to get a hatchet job in.

  • Fred West Lynn

    In the “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” line of thinking, I’d have to say nearly any Shaughnessy column on Schilling, although in regard to that subject, where Shank really shows his petulant snarkiness is in the frequent drive-bys where he would haul Schilling into a passing (negative) reference unrelated to the main topic just to engage in “neener-neener” schiit-stirring. Kinda like Callahan’s Manny Ramirez fixation/Tourette’s at present.

    However, for sheer awfulness I have to tout the immortal Shank homage to Barbara Walters: “If Tom Brady was…” column. I suspect that Shank and his handlers thought it was a witty parody of the (then-) unchallengeable affection that New England had for its heroic 3-time SB winner. As with so many things Shaughnessy, the “you don’t get it — it’s supposed to be funny” (aka the Rupert Pupkin Defense) is just that: a defensive and indignant lashing out because the writing is not funny or even high-school level competent.

    What IS true is that this piece encompassed all of Dan’s stylistic tics. References/Comparisons pulled out of the ‘ sock puppet drawer of the Sports Mind'; Brief observations that are intended to be tart but are instead fetid; no evidence at all of there being either an assignment editor or a copy editor that was aware of what he was writing; and, best of all, taking an extremely thin idea and pounding it like cheap veal until it is paper-thin and tasteless. I personally know of elementary and middle school children who break into convulsive (and derisive) laughter just at the mention of “If Tom Brady was…” (is was it ‘were’?). Glorious self-indulgence! “If Tom Brady was a tree…” “If Tom Brady was an ice cream flavor…” It could go on forever, and it certainly felt like it did.