Roses in November
God gave us memories that we might have roses in December. --J.M. Barrie, Courage, 1922
A memory is what is left when something happens and does not completely unhappen. --Edward de Bono
Finally--finally--a starving Red Sox Nation, having burned speedily and greedily through homemade highlight reels and newspaper scrapbooks and now hungering for more, was blessed with the first official release of commemorative film from MLB and the Red Sox.
Dirt Dogs was unimpressed:
MLB DVD misses mark on capturing high drama, Leary narration lifeless, more shots of Ruth than Roberts, shows ALCS sans-Slap, makes too many C-word and about 86 "86 years of suffering" references, and force feeds you "Tessie" one more time to boot in lieu of "Dirty Water."
They probably have a point. But those "Why Not Us?" shirts are pretty cheesy too, and I still say you should be the one to tell a hardcore member of RSN not to wear one. Not me.
Honestly, I get exasperated with the snobbery sometimes, but that's neither here nor there. I thoroughly enjoyed the DVD, and if that makes me somehow less of a fan, I apologize.
One of the features I liked best was the repeated slow-motion replays of the final out of the World Series, from different angles, giving it precisely the gratuitous ogling it deserved. I liked the interviews with the players--it seemed like they'd managed to get every one, even Manny. I liked the behind-the-scenes footage. I just liked being able to see highlights from the ALCS again, since I didn't tape it myself.
Yes, it had its flaws--in particular, the narration from the players was confusing. Though their studio interviews were obviously after the fact, they spoke in the present / future tense as if the games hadn't happened yet in some cases. I don't know why they did that--it's obviously a retrospective. And quite possibly the best part of the whole DVD, a bunch of clips from various parts of the season with "Tessie" (and I'm not joining the "Tessie" backlash, I like the song, so deal) over it, was obscured by the credits. So, yeah, it could've been better. But it dissects the Roberts steal in nearly perverse detail. And ease off on Dennis Leary--the man's a bona fide Sox fan and one of my favorite comedians ever, and it sure as hell beats Affleck.
Well, anyway. I liked the DVD, I'm glad I bought it, I'm going to probably watch it over again every day this week, all while salivating over the prospect of NESN's lengthier release next week.
Meanwhile, Gabe Kapler signed a one-year deal worth $2 million to play in Japan. To which I say, more power to him. It was admirable of him to play less often for less money to help us win a World Series. Now he deserves a big payday. Although he's big enough that the Japanese populace may mistake him for Godzilla. It'd be a hoot and a half to see Kapler's daily life in Japan at some point, if only to watch him try to physically fit into places. Perhaps NESN will give us some kind of little update next year.
Also, revel in the cheesy genius of Surviving Grady as pertains to the departure of the Hammer.
Speaking of big paydays, I've had just about enough of Pedro.
I get the definite sense that George has talked to Pedro to try and stick it to the Red Sox, either by signing him or, more probably, by jacking up the price. Meanwhile, I think Pedro is definitely being manipulative by talking with George. I understand that when it comes to contracts, emotions take a back seat, but as a fan, I don't appreciate being played like that. So my reaction is, fine, good riddance to Pedro.
Frankly, while the Yankees clearly need pitching, I don't believe that Pedro will help the Yankees if he signs there. He's not what they need--they need a horse and preferably a lefthander. The only reason George would overpay for him (and I say George because it's clear Cashman is not on the Pedro Bandwagon) is because he thinks it would hurt the Red Sox. It can't be because he fulfills a need on the Yankees--if I were a Yankees fan, I wouldn't feel secure with him a the ace, and I don't as a Red Sox fan, anymore, either.
To me, an ace is a pitcher who you know will dominate, who you absolutely know for a fact will let you write down a "W" in ink before his start and not have to go back on it later. To me, that person is not Pedro Martinez anymore. I never felt comfortable this year with him on the mound. His first-inning struggles spell trouble for me...the way he seems to almost be using the first inning or so as warm-up and only settling in later. Why? He's babying his arm. It's one thing not to be able to throw 97 and to have to pick your pitches; it's another to be less than effective for the first inning or so of most starts.
He already has a partially torn labrum. That's just a fact. He's going to break down at some point. I don't want to be the team relying on him as an ace when he does.
Putting aside contract details for the moment, I still feel strongly that Jason Varitek is much more of an asset than Pedro, and more worth the risks that signing him may present. It's well known that Pedro has shoulder problems and is trying to stave off the surgery that ended his brother Ramon's career, but Tek, who while 33 years old has also caught fewer games than most catchers his age, and except for an elbow injury in 2001 (which I don't think has really caused him lasting damage) has no significant health problems or lasting injury effects.
Meanwhile, the real difference for the Red Sox this year was a focus on depth in pitching (and before you go screaming contradiction after all I've just said about Pedro, when I say "pitching" in this case I mean our staff as a whole, from the top of the rotation to the back end of the bullpen, many of whom in the latter category were called upon to bail Pedro's ass out in game 5) as well as defense. Jason Varitek is the cog around which all the pitchers revolve, a backbone that holds them together as a staff; the pitchers themselves have said as much. Belli is ok, certainly the best backup anywhere, but if given a choice between a team leader and some kind of Macgyver bubble-gum and duct-tape platoon situation, I'll take Door Number 1. Bottom line is, if Pedro leaves, we'll still have Schilling. If Tek goes...
So there ya go, kids. All the Red Sox news I see fit to print. Go ahead and argue amongst yourselves. Oh, and if you want more off-season news about me, be advised to check my personal blog, which I will probably be updating more frequently now that Sox fever has died down.
As Mayor Mumbles once put it, together, we can make it happen. Thank you all for comin'.
P.S. I don't normally put up links to everything I think is awesome on other blogs / sites because if I did that, this site would consist mainly of "Check out what I found lying around on the Internet", and besides, nearly everything I would link from is on my blogroll anyway, and I figure, you'll either check those sites out like I do on a regular basis and read for yourself, or you aren't interested, which means an entry saying "OMG WTF LOL CHCEK TIHS OUUT!!!!11!!!!!!@@@!!!" will only be a total waste of space.
That said, this is fucking hilarious. Hilarious