Thursday, March 20, 2008

UPDATE: The Noble Red Sox

Quick post here with an article from the Boston Globe for everyone that thinks I'm just being a Yankee-homer and Red Sock-hater. (If you play for the Red Sox, you are a Red Sock.) The article is from The Boston Globe and if you read in detail, you'll see that this whole "boycott" thing was rather stupid. The A's coaches were never going to get paid and still might not be and they didn't make big noise about it. When the Yankees went in '04 the coaches got paid, but through a pool of money that the players chose how to distribute. It's likely the Red Sox players and union reps messed this one up, but we won't hear much about that.

1 comment:

Gaaaaarrrrry said...

From Buster Olney this morning:

As the Red Sox threatened a boycott of Wednesday’s game, they worked for team unity, as Jackie MacMullan writes.

The sentiment behind what was essentially a three-hour boycott was admirable, but the players handled the situation very clumsily; it was their union that negotiated the stipends for the players and did not support the coaches, just as it has for years, and if the players weren’t aware of that, that’s their fault. But it was the fans who bought tickets to the game in Ft. Myers on Thursday who ultimately suffered, and were forced to sit around without information, while waiting to see if a resolution could be reached.

Given that it was the responsibility of the Red Sox players to understand the situation before it became a crisis, a more magnanimous gesture would have been for some of the Boston players to offer up their stipends to the coaches, given that some of them are paid somewhere between $60,000 and $100,000 a day, rather than victimizing the fans. Or the Red Sox players could’ve quietly informed the Players Association and Major League Baseball that once in Japan, they intended to insist that the coaches’ situation be addressed. The nuclear option of sitting out games only needed to be implied, because there was zero chance that the Red Sox would’ve forfeited these games; there was zero chance that Major League Baseball would’ve let that happen.

Instead, the Red Sox walked out on a crowd that had paid in good faith to see a baseball game. “At the end of the day, it is the fans that took the hit,” said a major league executive with another team, in disgust.

To repeat: The sentiment behind the gesture is admirable. The relationship between the Red Sox players and their coaching staff is as close as any player-staff relationship in the sport. It was a money matter that had nothing to do with greed on the part of the players. But their action was rash and not particularly thought out or executed well.