Monday Thoughts – Ugh, Red Sox.

At what point do we declare the 2012 Red Sox a lost cause?

After the most encouraging win of the season last Thursday night, allowing the Red Sox to take 3 of 4 from the White Sox, after taking 2 of 3 from the Rays, the Red Sox were swept, in decision fashion, by the then-last place Toronto Blue Jays this weekend. As a result, now the Red Sox sit in last place in the AL East.

Horrific starts by Josh Beckett and Jon Lester did the Sox in this weekend, continuing a season-long trend. Rob Bradford notes that the Red Sox are 13-23 in starts by those two this season.

I read over and over how the team cannot trade either of those two while their value is so low. But clearly, something needs to change.

All in all, this may have been the most devastating/disappointing weekend of a season that has been disaster from the beginning.

Elsewhere:

A couple of interesting media bits from the weekend football notes. First Mike Reiss in his Sunday thoughts column:

Bill Belichick is scheduled to meet with reporters each day at training camp at 1 p.m., right before the team takes the field for its lone practice (1:30-4 p.m.). Those news conferences will be in the press box at Gillette Stadium, per usual in camp, but in a change from years past, that’s also where media will work throughout the 2012 season (instead of the media workroom). The team is expanding its weight room into the area where media members usually work during the season.

Over-under on number of times this is mentioned throughout the season? 50?

Then, in the Globe Sunday Football Notes, Shalise Manza Young, filling in for Greg Bedard cited ridiculous comments made by Jets receiver Santonio Holmes about how the media needs to be more supportive of the Jets, and used them to launch into a lecture on the impartiality of beat writers.

That’s not how media works. A good beat reporter isn’t a team’s enemy, and isn’t a fan. He or she is there to gather facts, anecdotes, and quotes and pass them on to readers or listeners. Is every reporter completely impartial? Sadly, no. Can some be accused of being a fan of the team they cover? Sadly, yes.

Being impartial means writing about the good and the bad, and trying to paint as honest a picture about what’s going on as possible. If a team or player is struggling, sometimes the truth isn’t well-received. But at the end of the day, a beat writer’s job is to present what he or she knows, good or bad.

If it were only that simple. I often wonder where the lines of being a beat reporter end. For many of them, what they write in the paper is much different than what they write on Twitter, or what they say in online chats or radio/TV appearances. Are they still a beat writer in those instances, or are they crossing over into a more opinion-based role, and does that negatively impact their self-claimed “impartial” beat writer material?

It really is not as simple as just presenting facts and quotes and passing them onto readers.

WEEI-FM is a finalist for the 2012 Marconi Awards Sports Station of the Year. That seem a little strange to you?

On the Penn State matter, I’m glad some people are keeping a proper perspective on these events:

[blackbirdpie id="227391836145213440"]

To be fair, the original Tweet was deleted fairly quickly by Breer, but not after it had been re-tweeted extensively, thus preserving a record of it.

  • Linda Austin

    Albert Breer is such a loser.

  • Wilfred

    Talk about pure stupidity from Breer.

  • Siggy

    I caught Pete Shepard’s show Sunday after the Red Sox game. The Meatman was in full blown outrage mode…it was great. Pete is working his way back. Putting him on the EEI midday show would seem to be a no-brainer.

  • Winning_Again

    How can a station that finished consistently 2nd amongst sports talk shows in a market be up for nomination for Sports Station of the Year?

    • JSR

      since when do ratings=quality?

      • Greg

        According to WEEI, any other time they’ve won the ratings book.

      • Winning_Again

        Marconi usually bases their nominees solely on ratings, so I’d use that as a starting point. This could be a lengthy back and forth if you want to debate quality between both stations. I agree that each station has its strong points and also several weak points but I’d give the edge to TSH. That’s a personal opinion and is in no way a justification on whether one should be nominated over the other. It’s a good debate point that would likely end with each poster getting no-where lol.

        • JSR

          No, I think both stations have their strengths and weaknesses, I just don’t think ratings should matter for a Marconi award. But either way, since Marconi isn’t just a Boston metro award, add up the ratings of all of WEEI’s affiliates throughout New England and I’m guessing they have more total listeners than 98.5.

        • Winning_Again

          LMAO, have the minions at WEEI taken our residence on this board? You seriously went to the argument “But what about Providence?????” on us. Wow, rather than have interns do show prep I guess Wolfe has them dispersed here.

          Bruce. what the hell is going on.

        • JSR

          Sorry, I don’t work for WEEI. I do sometimes enjoy listening to the station, however. I also listen to the Sports Hub just as often, especially when Gresh is not on. I live in RI and spend a lot of the winter at Sunday River in Maine. WEEI has affiliates in both areas and I’m sure many people listen to them. I’m not sure why these people shouldn’t matter from a national perspective. I believe they also have Springfield, Worchester and Cape Cod stations. I really don’t care which station wins in the ratings, I’m just pointing out that it is possible that more human beings on the planet Earth listen to WEEI programming, especially considering they don’t go head to head with WBZ-FM in a lot of those markets. But my main point is that ratings should not matter. I don’t think American Idol is the best TV show because it is the most watched, just like I don’t think Justin Beiber and Lady Gaga make the world’s best music because they sell the most albums.

  • John

    Further proof that Albert Breer is the dumbest person on this planet.

  • latetodinner

    Bruce,

    Nice piece exposing SMY…yet again. How she has a job and yet remains completely clueless is beyond me. Having said that I think you asked the wrong question. You asked to paraphrase “when does beat writing end…at twitter, at Facebook, when the writer clearly crosses over into opinion?” I think the correct question to ask is “When is it okay for a professional sports reporter to stop being professional?”

    I honestly do not have a problem with beat writers injecting their opinion in pieces. If they didn’t they would be robots. My issues come when their writing consistently wrecks of bias and it therefore stops them from doing their job professionally. So for me, I think that if an entity is paying someone to write professionally for them on the Beat then they should have a reasonable expectation that the beat writer upholds a level of professionalism in whatever forum they choose to express themselves…twitter, Facebook, TV, radio, etc. SMY is too stupid to understand this. She thinks she is part of some old boys club whereby ridiculing Bill Belichick is not only fashionable it is a must. Her laziness and lack of football knowledge coupled with her disrespect of the subjects she covers make her work unreadable and unprofessional. She has the perfect job working at the Globe.

  • JonB

    Seems all the WEEI obituaries being penned a year ago were a bit premature. You do have to at least give them some credit, the overall on-air product has improved since the station begrudgingly acknowledged the existence of TSH – only took them two years.

    I’m excluding Mutt & Merloni though. They are still as awkward and grating to listen to as ever. Every time I hear their show I just picture Muttnansky reading from some flow chart out of a Sports Talk for Dummies book; “If caller responds with ‘X’, say ‘Y’.”

    I didn’t understand the midday move when it was made, and I don’t understand it now. I was never a big Dale Arnold fan, but I don’t recall there being a hue and cry to have him removed from the airwaves. I also don’t understand why Mutt & Merloni continue to get the better national guests and interviews. Wouldn’t EEI be better served having guys like Buster Olney and Peter King appear during AM/PM drive-time where the advertising dollars are much bigger? Not to mention the actual insight that might be gained by having a semi-experienced interviewer asking questions, rather than two noobs like Mutt & Lou?

    I’ll second the earlier comment made about Pete Sheppard – he’s been an entertaining listen on the weekends and I’m glad he’s back. His fill-in “flash boy” work on D&C over the last few weeks has been great as well. Thought his style added a different element that was particularly refreshing when compared to the incessant parroting of Callahan waterboy Meterparel. While Pete’s act could become tiresome when mixed with the bombast of the old Big Show, his pro-Patriots homerism and willingness to mix it up a bit with D&C would make him an interesting addition to that show. Anybody would be better than Meter. I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a single person that finds his take on anything to be either enjoyable or interesting.

    • bsmfan

      If this was in response to my comment about interns from WEEI/TSH being on here?

      First, if you’re hopping around usernames to circumvent some detection, how is that fair to anyone? To me, what you said above, is what the forum/board is intended for.

      Second, how does astroturfing benefit anyone? What if TSH dispatched their interns to sonsofsamhorn.net or another forum to bomb it with anti-WEEI posts? Yelp.com had this problem and still suffers from it. Boards go real fast like this, no?

      Third, I’ll say it again: competition is a good thing. From my two years on here, it seems like the board was heavy on the anti-WEEI comments, as TSH was the nascent station. As time has gone on, it seems like TSH is getting some of the criticism back that used to be directed to WEEI. I also think Bruce has done a good job at “not being in the bag”. I don’t think most of us would be here if he was some pocket shill for whatever station, right?

      I have no clue of the “market theory” when it comes to local radio markets, but if it works anything like how cable news did, it seems like each station will carve out their own niches and continue to appeal within those audiences. We had this discussion recently on T+R vs. D+C a few posts ago.

      Going on this, if someone like Felger continues to make “Skip Bayless” like comments, for whatever reason, he’ll get takes on here that. Along with others, I’ll continue to pound his “cap is crap” mantra. I’ve suggested 3+ times now to him+Tony that they get on Andrew Brandt to “clear the issue up”–which, something tells me, won’t change his position on it because of his ego.

      • JonB

        Yes, this was a response to a reply you left on one of my earlier comments regarding WEEI.

        First off, I don’t work for WEEI, have never worked for WEEI, and have never had the desire to work for WEEI. Do people now need to disclose this anytime they make a neutral or, God forbid, slightly positive comment about the station on this board?

        And I don’t know what the hell you’re talking about with all this multiple username conspiracy theory nonsense. I’ve tried registering this username several times but somehow it never works for more than a few days. It’s not my fault the Disqus commenting platform sucks. I’ve commented on a few posts here and there as a “Guest”, so if that constitutes a crime, please report me to the internet police and have me banned.

        * Non-WEEI Employee Disclosure: No information or opinion contained herein constitutes a representation or solicitation to listen to any radio stations mentioned herein. The above commentator is not an employee or shareholder of Entercom Communications Corp., or its subsidiary entity WEEI, and is not subject to any agreement that would otherwise constitute a conflict of interest as of the time of this posting.

  • GRBSPR

    I laugh at ‘media awards.’ Marconi this and Emmy that. Media hacks backslapping other media hacks, is what they are.

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