The nightmare that is the 2012 Boston Red Sox not only continues but is getting more surreal and less believable.
Not only are the Red Sox a losing team in late August, but their clubhouse seems as joyous and fun as that pit prison in The Dark Knight Rises.
Then there was the controversy over Bobby Valentine leaving Jon Lester in too long on a July 22nd game against the Blue Jays. According to Jeff Passan and Yahoo! Sports, a group of Red Sox players led by Adrian Gonzalez texted the Red Sox front office to complain about Bobby Valentine.
That story made sense. It did not put the players in the best light. Instead of complaining about their manager, they should have been focused on winning on the field. Maybe they should have been more upset at Jon Lester giving up 11 runs than Valentine trying to see if his supposed No. 1 starter could go five innings.
The controversy has continued to the point where on a day when Adrian Gonzalez hit a big home run in a victory against the Yankees, the questions continued to be about his text messages. Gonzalez replied, "I know why you’re asking, but we’re not going to talk about that anymore.”
So what is the narrative now? Well, according to the New York Daily News, Kelly Shoppach, the Red Sox backup catcher, was the one who sent the text message to management. Because when a team looks for a leader and a representative, they turn to someone who started 42 games all year.
And evidently knowing that management would rather hear this from a star rather than a backup catcher, Gonzalez let them send a text message from his phone. And, according to the same article, an anonymous player said, "The text message was not (Gonzalez's) idea, his opinions or his words."
In order for this story to be accurate, a players meeting needed to end with Adrian Gonzalez saying, "This situation is terrible. Hey backup catcher. Take my cell phone and send a message to the front office. I don't know what you are going to write and I will probably disagree with it. Here's the cell phone. See you later."
Who does that with their phone?
Who lets people send messages on their behalf?
Nobody does that. Certainly not the highest-paid player on a high-profile baseball team about to do an action that will have crazy media repercussions.
And why is Shoppach of all people the one who sent the text message? By an incredible coincidence he was traded to the New York Mets and is no longer on the team. So that makes it convenient that the person who typed the message is not their high-priced superstar but a backup catcher who is not on the team anymore.
Does any of this make any sense?
It sounds like a half-baked lie thought up by kids to cover their tracks.
The letters "B" and "S" are coming to mind, and not for "Boston" and "Sox."
Melky Cabrera's website was more truthful than this story.
As I wrote in an earlier Bleacher Report article, this could be the least-fun Red Sox team in generations. But this incident shows that they may not only be putting a losing product on the field but are gutless off the field as well.
If a message was sent to the front office, either own up to it or say "it's a private issue." Do not dump the responsibility on a backup catcher who is not there anymore.
As Shoppach said in the New York Daily News, "“I have no influence on what they’re doing with upper management. I am a backup catcher doing my job."
And who would have thought that the reeling Mets, still feeling the effects of the Bernie Madoff scandal, would be a more stable clubhouse than in Boston?
This season cannot end fast enough.
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