Physican, Heal Thyself


The Boston Red Sox, to the envy of the sports world, have enjoyed an enthusiastic, knowledgeable and loud fan base. It is also one of the most, if not the most, loyal fan base. It’s like family. I can hit my sister, but if you do, it’s war.

Then, from the depths of despair, the most unlikely group of grinning band of jesters shoved the Bambino’s curse into the gutter. In 2004 we got the Holy Grail. With precious few exceptions, we were blessed with a team that played as a team, lived as a team and fought like a team. You cut Damon, Millar bled. And we did it again in 2007. Pedroia caught cold and Ellsbury sneezed. Wonder of wonders.

Now we come to 2011. If you ask the Red Sox organization, from ball boy(girl) to John Henry, September’s astonishing failure was caused poor play. Of course it was, just as the heart stops when you die . But why? The same talented athletes that compiled the best record in baseball unto they got to September did not merely forget how to hit, pitch or catch.. To paraphrase the bard (the playwright not the pitcher), something is rotten in the club house. You cannot have the self induced implosion which we, the wringers of hands, painfully watched, helplessly from the sideline, without a serious unit failure.

We turned into losers, quitters, whiners; Where was the fabled leadership of our storied captain who wears his self aggrandizing “C” on his chest? How and when did Jacoby Ellsbury get sent to Redemption Island? Who didn’t tell out infant terrible, Kevin Youkilis to shut up? Where was Big Papi’s calming influence, and what in the name of all that’s holy happened to the pitching staff.
To an old fart like me, the answer is pretty simple. Out beloved Bosox became a group of cliques with acne scarred mentalities, not a team, and those cliques need to be broken up.

Don’t re-sign Jonathan Papelbon. Every time he takes the mound, one can only wonder which pole of his bipolar performance will appear. Let Papi go. His Warholian time limit is up. Sell John Henry’s yacht and get rid of the scowling Mr. Lackey. Make Jason Varitek a coach or send him packing. I also hear the fair Ms. Watney can cause her share of trouble as well. It pains me greatly to say this, but banish her from the Nation. Get some new life in the dugout that will wear the uniform with pride.

Henry et al. owe it to the fans. Where’s our yacht trip and earphones. We pay a good deal of money and plump up egos with our cheers and T-shirts. Get some air freshener for the club house. As painful as it may be, the old guard no longer guards. They are the ones that let the team collapse like a new bride’s first soufflé.

In short, physician heal thyself.