I'm starting to get really sick of this season.
I know AIM conversations are tough to read but I wanted to immortalize this discussion between myself and Sam about trading deadline stress, identity, Mannygate, Schilling and politics.
Me: Hooray for us going to the game tonight!
Sam: I know!
Me: Did you see my dad with the heckla?
Sam: I did! He seemed affable enough, for all his shouting.
Me: Yeah my dad says he's really cool. Of course, my dad gets along with pretty much everybody.
Sam: Nice shirt.
Me: Yeah..it's autographed by Orsillo and Remy. He said Remy made fun of him when he was signing it.
Sam: I'll bet! They make fun of Wally when he wears them.
Me: Right...just trying to think of happy dad things so I can avoid giving myself a stroke over the Manny BS.
Sam: Alan Embree is a Yankee, you know.
Sam: Yeah...And I thought he wanted to go somewhere closer to home. Oh well.
Me: Did that happen today?
Sam: Hm, relatively recent, maybe today. Yankees signed LHP Alan Embree for the rest of the season. It would have been worth it for the Red Sox to pay his $1 million trade bonus to prevent this from happening. Embree should get an opportunity to work in the sixth and seventh innings for the Yankees. That's via Rotoworld...I don't know how to permalink their stuff. We also seem to be getting Larry Bigbie. I can't tell if that's a done deal or not, but Andrew seems to think it is.
Me: Wait he plays...what does he play again?
Me: Oh...Trot or Manny replacement?
Sam: Maybe since Trot's on the DL? I don't know. He's more comparable to Trot than Manny, but then again, isn't everyone?
Me: True ... is Manny really going?
Sam: Dunno...that trade, last I heard, had hit a snag. And I heard there was a 'soft deadline' for noon today, but then i hadn't heard anything else.
Me: Who were we going to get?
Sam: Mike Cameron and Aubrey Huff was the rumor.
Me: Aubrey Huff...not Cliff Floyd? Perhaps that was the snag. I hope so...I can't wait for this part of the season to be over. So I can know who I can love and who I have to start booing.
Sam: Huff's been better this year tho...or wait, maybe not. Just these last few weeks.
Me: I'm taking this Manny thing really hard.
Sam: I know, me too.
Me: I'm actually starting to take this whole season really hard. Is July 30 too soon to declare this season sucky?
Me: Sigh...everything is just so...stupid.
Sam: Sure. But there's lots of time left.
Me: Like not even a dramatic passionate crap like 2003 game 7. Just...stupid.
Sam: And we're still in first place.
Me: I know, but that just makes me think of the Dan Duquette thing: "More days in first place more days in first place more days in first place..."
Sam: Hey, last year when we had the .500-ball stretch, it was kind of like this.
Me: Yeah...I guess I sided with the majority on Nomargate. And this time I think Mannygate sucks.
Sam: I wanted Nomar gone.
Me: Toward the end there I did too.
Sam: I was so mad about him underperforming, when he left all I could think was 'good'. In retrospect I miss him and what he did for us all those years, but the immediate reaction was 'Thank god, we've got that off the bench' .
Me: This feels different, though. It feels really contrived.
Sam: I know, I don't feel like we NEED to get Manny out of there like we did with Nomar.
Me: With Nomar, it was new not to hustle. With Nomar, it was new to have such a public display of attitude. With Manny, none of these things strike me as any better or worse than say, the pharyngitis episode or the cocktails with Enrique Wilson thing...but all of a sudden it's WWIII.
Sam: Plus, Manny's still delivering, and Nomar isn't. Wasn't. Well, also isn't. But you know.
Me: Good point. That thing you posted about WEEI made me had to walk away from the computer. Unfortunately, I couldn't do it today when I read about Big Papi's comments.
Sam: Imagine being in the car when you heard it.
Me: I would've changed the station. In fact, I did change the station, sometime during spring training.
Sam: Nah, I just started screaming.
Me: I never listen to WEEI anymore. Which is sad, because I used to listen to it all the time. I loved the Whiner Line. But now that I stopped listening and see it from outside, I see the damage it can do. I stopped listening when I started listening all day and the stuff I'd hear about as "hypothetical" on Dennis and Callahan was "fact and we must avenge" by the Big Show.
Sam: Ha ha, yeah, that's true. The Patriots stuff yesterday was fantastic tho...Bill Belichick presser... Roosevelt Colvin interview. It was so good to hear from them.
Me: Yeah, probably I'll start listening with the Pats because there's not as much drama.
Sam: Training camp opened yesterday. The biggest controversy was how many reporters there were in the room for Belichick's press conference. It was funny.
Me: Sweet. I know Bill Belichik rules with an iron fist. I'm glad we still at least have Matty Light. I was afeard he was going to go. Although I'm pretty sad about Ted Johnson / Tedy / Joe Andruzzi.
Sam: Oi, I know. It sounds like Ty Law is kind of still on the radar.
Me: But the thing is? I'm SAD about those guys...in a "that's too bad" kind of way. IN STARK CONTRAST TO THE SEARING ANGST OF THE RED SOX.
Me: I'm starting to get sick of said searing angst.
Sam: You and the rest of the region.
Me: Like really sick of it, like, can we please just be sane for just one season.
Sam: No. We're Boston.
Sam: That's what separates us from the Florida Marlins of the world. C'mon, we've felt this bad about the team before.
Me: I don't know what would have been sadder, if the World Series had changed us, or the fact that it hasn't.
Sam: You have to have the lows if you're going to have the extreme highs, though.
Me: But it's a fabricated low, this Manny thing. It's not necessary. It's not the same as losing game 7 or being down 0-3.
Sam: That WS wouldn't have been half as sweet if we just took everything in history in stride, though. Feeling this pissed off about the team is part of it.
Me: Those are lows you have to go through. This is just drama.
Sam: Oh c'mon, we've had drama before.
Me: I know but there were emotional reasons, baggage of the 86 year drought etc. Now, we don't have that, and it seems like some kind of perverse sadomasochism.
Sam: So now we're just learning that Boston is Boston whether we've won a WS or not. If anything, this is resounding proof that winning a WS did NOT make us lose our identity as fans.
Me: I guess. But parts of it were only explicable with the lack of WS. With the WS to me it makes a lot of it indefensible. And what is that identity? That we are always looking for reasons to hate our team? Fuck that, that's not my identity. That's what I'm feeling right now. Sam: We're insane and passionate and it's not going to be easy for anyone to play here. No free rides. I don't think it's necessarily hating the team.
Me: To me, being a Sox fan was about loving the team through everything. It was about supporting them no matter what happened. It was about taking the punishment of game 7 and getting back up again. It's still about that to me. Loving them no matter what.
Sam: Sure. And I still love Manny, and I still love Nomar to an extent. Doesn't mean I wasn't ripshit at Nomar by the end there. Sometimes you get furious with the guys you love.
Me: Right, so if there are good reasons to get rid of them, let's hear 'em. But things seem so...squishy. Like, the moral indignation is just...
Sam: No, I agree that this stuff with Manny is crap. I think we all agree about that.
Me: Right. That's what troubles me. We don't all agree—the people who booed last night obviously are 180 degress with you and me.
Sam: Although c'mon, it was YOUR boy getting into fisticuffs with him.
Me: My boy?
Sam: Apparently Ortiz had to 'step between them'.
Me: This is what happens when you don't listen to the radio...Argh Christ. Even if that did happen, what does it mean? All of this is just gossip and drama.
Sam: Um, I didn't hear that on the radio... it was in the ProJo.
Me: We don't know what happened. We can't make an informed decision. This is why I've been avoiding MSM. We don't know what the conversation was, or who went at who.
Sam: Well, not much infor, but: "Ramirez's insistence that he be given a day off Wednesday as promised, sources indicate, infuriated some teammates and resulted in an angry confrontation between Curt Schilling and Ramirez. Schilling got into a heated argument with Ramirez and David Ortiz had to step in and separate them."
Me: Right, but we don't know what was said. We can imagine, but it's just that - imagination. And we're going to fly off the handle about what we think we know. That's what bothers me.
Sam: But it's not good that fighting has reached the clubhouse at all, regardless of what was said.
Me: Right, so why is no one calling for Schilling's head? Maybe Schillling should let his management handle it and not be such a drama queen. You know? I mean, I love the guy dearly, and I'm sure I can't judge the situation unless I was there. But there's that possibility also.
Sam: Because the perception is going to be that Schilling was saying what the Whiner-Line-section of RSN was saying, or something similar.
Me: Right, again, key word: perception. Personally, I think it's interesting that Trot hasn't seemed to be involved in this except as the circumstance that has brought the Manny issue under the microscope.
Sam: Has he been in the dugout?
Me: You'd have to think he'd have been in the clubhouse. But you know, you can say, Trot is staying out of it. So why can't Schilling?
Sam: Well, yeah. I do say that. But you know how I get about Curt.
Me: I know how everyone but me gets about Curt. Even saying all this stuff I still don't feel negatively towards him.
Sam: I know. I've given up trying to make you see reason.
Me: Just that you have to take things with him involved with a grain of salt.
Me: A grain of salt, is all. I genuinely believe his intentions are good.
Sam: And with Curt around, we'll never get goiters, then.
Me: If he got in Manny's face because he feels the way WEEI whiners are feeling then I'm sure he was sincere about the way he felt. And I'm sure clubhouses police themselves all the time
Sam: Undoubtedly. But, this being Boston, and this being CURT SCHILLING and MANNY RAMIREZ, omg teh world is ending.
Sam: Trading deadline stress. It's making us all nuts.
Me: Totally. Thing is, I think where I disagree with a lot of people is that my belief and my perception is that Schilling is sincere.Which of course is just my belief / perception. Whether or not his actions are always ideal is of course another matter but I think he's...well...he's like me. He says first and asks questions later.
Sam: Oh, I agree that he's sincere. That's what scares me sometimes. I mean, all those anti-abortion nuts are completely sincere in their beliefs. It would almost be better if he was a flake.
Me: Nah. I guess I just identify with him a lot. I feel like he and I have a lot in common personalitywise.
Sam: I love when he speaks out and says what he's thinking ABOUT BASEBALL. It just drives me nuts when he does so about politics or whatever.
Me: Well, my view on that is a) he's done so well with baseball, I give him a free ride to a certain extent, and b) he's a citizen of this country and has a right to political speech. If I had the opportunity because of celebrity elsewhere to bend the President's ear or drum up support for my candidate, I'd do it too.
Sam: Of course he has a right to political speech. But when he uses what he's done on the baseball field to bolster his political beliefs, it worries me. Like keeping religion and state separate.
Me: Well, I guess that's where I feel differently. I see what you're saying. Like it cheapens baseball to be using it for leverage. But on the other side, you can say that baseball is cheap compared to politics and important current issues, and it's only a skewed set of values in this country that make Curt Schilling enough of a celebrity to hang out with the President - but if that's how things are, then why shouldn't he take advantage of it?
Sam: It's a skewed set of values in this country that got us that President in the first place. I don't know.
Me: I actually read an interview with Curt where he says pretty much that, that he doesn't think it's right he makes millions more than his son's teachers, but that's the way things are and he works within the system. I mean you or I can feel how we want about that, but I don't think there's really anything wrong with it. Funny thing is I agree with you wholeheartedly re the Pres. I totally hate him, I was pissed when he got reelected, etc. but it's got little to do with how I perceive Schilling.
Sam: If he doesn't think it's right that he makes millions more than his kids' teachers, maybe he shouldn't be a Republican.
Me: Well, but what he said was, that's just the way things are. You don't have to agree with him, but it's his way of looking at stuff. I dunno, I think I'm just the weird one here. Because it honestly doesn't bother me.
Sam: Eh, we're all the weird ones. We're Red Sox fans.