Re: Clean up starts with Josh Beckett-Ridding clubhouse of stench means he must go
posted at 10/13/2011 11:23 AM EDT
Wow, Josh Beckett was the next best thing to mom's apple pie a few months ago. Now we have to get rid of him? It is amazing to think that but for Elsbury running into the wall, and Papelbon not getting the save in the last game, none of this would be going on. And all of you high and mighty and what have you done for me lately complainers are probably hoisting your beers as you are complaining. What went on the Sox clubhouse is no different than so many other ball clubs, but to simply trash the team, and Francona, is ridiculous. The clean up starts with erasing all that went on this year and starting anew with a clean slate, but that clean slate doesn't mean getting rid of all the players. Clean up starts with Josh Beckett-Ridding clubhouse of stench means he must go
[QUOTE]By John Tomase/Boston Herald D ETROIT — The cesspool that was the Red Sox [ team stats ] clubhouse has been laid bare, and the stench is overpowering. Now begins the toxic cleanup, a job likely to fall to GM-in-waiting Ben Cherington. If there’s a silver lining, it’s that Cherington will have the power to clean house bloodlessly and emotionlessly. It’s a skill the Sox front office admires of Patriots [ team stats ] coach Bill Belichick , who long ago drowned his sentimentality in a tub. But scrubbing the margins won’t cut it. Bid adieu to veterans Tim Wakefield [ stats ] and Jason Varitek [ stats ] if you want — truly altering clubhouse culture requires bigger changes. And once you start examining the possibilities, all roads lead to the same conclusion: Josh Beckett must go. Whatever chemistry problems plagued the 2011 Red Sox, most trace to the starting pitchers. They were the ones not only drinking beer in the clubhouse during games while the season spun down the toilet, but eating fried chicken and playing video games, too, according to the Globe. They’re the ones who have consistently flouted the concept of team, carrying themselves with an aloofness that breeds resentment. And they’re the ones who failed the team most acutely when it needed them most down the stretch. To be clear, we’re really talking about a gang of three — Beckett, Jon Lester [ stats ] and John Lackey. Clay Buchholz is more like a junior member. Give him better leadership, and he’d get in line. So what are the Red Sox to do? They’d love to rid themselves of Lackey and the roughly $45 million remaining on his contract. But after watching him post the worst full-time ERA in Red Sox history (6.41), who exactly will take him? Even in a bad-contract-for-bad-contract scenario, Lackey’s still nearly impossible to move. The latest clubhouse revelations won’t help his cause either, though he’s more liked than his combative press conferences would suggest. OK, fine. Lackey’s going nowhere. So how about Lester? Simply put, the Red Sox aren’t trading their best pitcher. End of story. Lester’s young (27), talented (16-8, 3.33, on average, since 2008) and more of a follower than a leader. Same goes for Buchholz. Trading him coming off a back injury when his value is low makes little sense, particularly since he’s a mostly harmless clubhouse presence, strumming his guitar, joking around and generally acting like everyone’s little brother. No, the problem is the big brother Buchholz admires. A lack of maturity has long dogged Beckett, but by late 2009 it appeared he had turned the corner. Manager Terry Francona routinely referred to him as the leader of the pitching staff and the other starters followed suit. But Beckett’s act didn’t sit well with the entire team. One veteran complained that Beckett and the other pitchers operated on their own workout schedules. Reporters played an informal clubhouse game wondering when Beckett would talk to a position player. Even former Marlins manager Jack McKeon contributed yesterday when he told the Palm Beach Post he had to lock the clubhouse doors during the 2003 championship season because Beckett and fellow starting pitcher Brad Penny were spending too much time there during games. McKeon wanted them on the bench, where in addition to cheering teammates, they could scout the next day’s opponent. Despite suffering a relapse, Beckett should still have trade value. After all, only 11 pitchers won at least 13 games last year while posting an ERA below 2.90 and Beckett was one of them. Even with $46 million remaining on his contract through 2014, the 31-year-old remains a bona fide high-end starter. Cutting the cord won’t be easy. The Red Sox [ team stats ] lack pitching already. But that just means they’ll need to swing a trade or dive back into free agency. They’ll have all winter to address that deficiency. Their first order of business should be removing the stink from the clubhouse. It will require bold action and nothing would be more shocking than ditching Beckett. It’s why he’s the guy who’s got to go.
Posted by 2004Idiots[/QUOTE]