Shaughnessy Spanks $ox, Globe
(5.3.06: Boston Globe front page)
"Speaking of no-win propositions, we've got a problem here at Daddy Globe. Those of you not living in caves know by now that the New York Times Co. owns us, and also owns 17 percent of the Red Sox. This conflict of interest taints everything we do on these pages and the Globe looks especially compromised on days like yesterday when we ran a Page 1 story entitled, ''Hit the road with the Sox and get . . ."
"Yesterday's journalistic wet kiss included a nifty graphic detailing exactly what Sox fans get if they purchase an official team VIP road trip package. The story contained no inside info that couldn't be gleaned by a fan with access to the Internet, but the timing was abysmal and the packaging worse. By any measurement, this was a Red Sox infomercial, a front-page story guaranteed to embolden those who believe the Globe is part of a Red Sox Cartel and certain to make life more difficult for Messrs. Snow, Edes, and all others who toil tirelessly to bring balanced coverage to our readers.
"...But it never stops with these guys and Henry's NASCAR-ization of Fenway has crossed the line. Everything is sponsored. Everything is for sale.
"...Then again, can anything be a surprise after the $ox sold the sacred sod of 2004 or sanctioned gambling by getting their own Mass. Lottery scratch card? Yeesh.
"The $ox have been appropriately applauded for all they have done in the community and for the amazing improvements at ancient Fenway, but the ballpark has officially morphed into a haven for the rich." -- 5.4.06, Dan Shaughnessy, The Boston Globe
Verducci Mailbag: "In your Red Sox column, I couldn't help but stutter when I got to the part about Jason Varitek and Trot Nixon ("noticeably trimmer and with less pop"). Short of saying "Jason and Trot sure miss that flaxseed oil and the clear," what are you insinuating? I'm not from Egypt, and don't know about da' Nile. -- John, Windsor, Conn."
"Ah, yes, this is the shadowy age we live in, the one owners and players created by giving us the Steroid Era. Scouts take note all the time of players who look smaller and show less pop. They use the line "Congress got him" to explain some guys' declines. If you've been watching the past two seasons, you know what I mean. That said, I do think both players got very big, and at their age, and in Nixon's case, with his injury history, they're probably better off being a bit lighter. The question is not what happened -- everybody deserves the benefit of the doubt -- but will they suffer any decline? Pudge Rodriguez, Bobby Higginson, Scott Spiezio, Ryan Klesko, Nomar Garciaparra ... all suffered declines when they weren't as bulked." -- 5.3.06, Tom Verducci's Mailbag