Tony Massarotti held a chat on Boston.com today, and there were a few items of interest to come out of the session.
Here’s one noteworthy exchange:
12:42 [Comment From BruschiJersey]
Mazz – you often seem to insult Boston fans, and imply that none of them see the faults of their own teams, why do you despise all of us so much?
12:44 Tony Massarotti:: What? I don’t despise anyone. I believe in open, honest discourse. I don’t believe in being a homer or a blind loyalist as I don’t think that accomplishes anything. The best relationships have some give and take, self-criticisms, etc. Why is everybody so sensitive?
So being a homer or blind loyalist doesn’t accomplish anything, but being a contrarian on everything, and being critical just to stir people up is productive? Help me out here.
As far as being sensitive, this is the guy who complained about how the younger player never “asks about you, the way any grounded person would. He never asks you for a movie tip or restaurant recommendation.”
Later in the chat, he was asked about the steroid issue:
12:13 [Comment From Nick MD]
Is it safe to say that we can now assume that David Ortiz took steriods? He is having the classic steriod breakdown that players have. Thoughts?
12:14 Tony Massarotti:: I don’t think we can “assume” anything until there is a reason to. I am very reluctant to make these sorts of accusations without some definitive proof. That’s why most media people don’t just throw names out there. Too risky.
So wait, the other day he criticizes the Boston fans for having “spent relatively little time wondering about the ramifications” of the steroid era on our players while “in our cozy little cocoon.”
But at the same time, we can’t make assumptions, or accusations, especially against the guy Tony wrote a book with. I see.
12:55 [Comment From Janice Harwood]
Tony, why isn’t anyone looking deeper into this reported meeting with the Duquette Sox where a doctor may have spoken to players about the advantages of using steroids in front of a consenting front office? Was there any buzz about this practice back then where you were covering the team? And was there any buzz about Manny Ramirez’s activities back in 2002-2008 that could have been reported on?
12:57 Tony Massarotti:: I think we are looking deeper, but it’s hard to prove one person’s word versus another. Merloni has clarified his statements some, saying the team never “promoted” steroids so much as they were aware that use existed. I think we all knew that, but it’s a different matter when a player (or former player) says it. To me, it’s akin to a HS rally on drug use. We KNOW kids are using; we just don’t know which ones.
12:58 Tony Massarotti:: At the time, I can assure you there was no buzz. And if there was something shady about Manny that we knew of, we would have reported it.
12:58 Tony Massarotti:: Still, criticisms of the media during the steroids area are legitimate. We didn’t understand the magnitude of the problem, either, until it was too late. Shame on us.
Wait, is KNOWING (but not really) the same as assuming, or not? I’m confused. So it’s fine to assume in general but not in specifics? How does that work?
He says there was no “buzz” about Manny, yet we’re the suckers for believing that he was clean while here?
The last bit the media not understanding the magnitude of the problem reads good at first glance, but did they not understand it, or did they just ignore it? The guy who reported about seeing all the stuff in Mark McGwire’s locker, Steve Wilstein was villified and treated as an outcast by his media colleagues for what he reported.
“Shame on us” – Not “me,” Nothing saying “I screwed up” but making into a collective act, without personal responsibility.
Still, it’s better than nothing. I doubt however, that we’ll see that kind of admission in a column.