Anyone who read my last post knows exactly how I feel about the Red Sox ownership and their recent turmoil. Monday afternoon, former Red Sox great Curt Schilling decided that there wasn’t enough fuel in this fire, so he added more. Curt Schilling appeared on 98.5 the Sports Hub, and the now infamous Felger & Massarotti afternoon segment when he said, “…he’s [John Henry] full of ****.” Strong words to say the least from the former Sox, but not uncharted waters for Schilling. Almost a week ago now on October 12, Schilling, while on national TV on ESPN’s Baseball Tonight, said, “These [owners] are some bad people.” That is a very big accusation to make, not just about the organization, but about the character of the owners. Schilling is saying that the 3 owners, Tom Werner, Larry Lucchino, and John Henry, are not good human beings; that there is something morally wrong with them. Could this just be the ramblings of a bitter man, after arguing with the Sox when he hurt his shoulder in 2008 after signing a 1 year $8 million contract? Perhaps. Yet again, Schilling would know exactly how the Red Sox organization operates after spending 4 years there and winning 2 World Series. This brings us to Monday afternoon.
Schilling was a special guest on the Felger & Massarotti show Monday afternoon, and he was asked to provide some insight into the team. “It’s a ton of mudslinging and finger-pointing, and at the end of the day the 2 guys most responsible for bringing 2 world championships here and turning this organization around are gone.” Schilling said. When asked what he thinks about John Henry saying that ownership was not involved in the recent release of private information about Terry Francona and the Sox clubhouse Schilling said, “I think he’s full of ****… and I think he’s disingenuous at best. I think there’s been a lot of that, and I think when Terry comes out and says, very candidly, in the press conference… I didn’t feel like the ownership of this team had my back. That is such a much more powerful statement then the words being used. And then to have someone follow that up with… I was confused by that when he said that… That’s not true. You know this is a group of people who would love everybody to believe that they just sit back and watch baseball ops run the team, it’s not true, they’ve been involved, they’re always involved. When asked if Schilling had even been involved with anything like this Schilling said, “Oh absolutely. Absolutely, I got to see it… I’m not speculating. I got to see it, and experience it and watch it happen.” Schilling added one last jab at ownership when asked about what the perception of the Red Sox organization is he said, “When things like this information, Tito’s marriage stuff, and the medical stuff, and the pills and stuff; when that stuff starts coming from a ‘source’ in the organization, that’s people with an agenda, and people with power in an organization because those things don’t come out, they can’t come out from people other than that. The amount of people that can know enough about that information to make it to be a source is very, very small.”
While Schilling was putting the blame on ownership for the leaking of information, he still maintained that close friend Terry Francona and some of his former teammates were very much responsible for the collapse. When asked if Francona was totally blameless for the collapse Schilling said, “No, absolutely not! … He’s one of the few guys to have the wherewithal, the integrity, to stand up and say this is my fault I couldn’t reach the players… ” Schilling then explored what is the root of all this sludge, an idea that I personally explored in a post right after the collapse, which is the players quitting on this team.
Schilling said he was caught off guard by some of the comments Jon Lester had made earlier in the day, with Lester acknowledging that Francona had lost a voice in the clubhouse. “You’ve got a bunch of grown man admitting that they no longer felt like they listen to the guy in charge, and I don’t understand that.” Schilling said. “… you have a player basically telling you exactly what happened… which means, again I go back to the fact that these players quit. They quit on each other, they quit on the manager, they quit on the organization, they quit on the fans. I think that much is clear.” he added. The comments he’s referring to can be found in the article below.
Schilling has always been known for speaking his mind, and he leveled into ownership and the players during his interview. We all know that Francona lost the clubhouse, and personally I think that we all can accept that fact. From everything that’s come out, it is clear that it was not Francona’s fault for the collapse. It was not ownerships fault for the collapse either, it is all on the players. Yes ownership is completely at fault for leaking information to the public. The information that has come out these past few days should confirm that. But there comes a point when what’s going on in the clubhouse doesn’t matter to you or me. I am very concerned about what’s going on in that clubhouse, and I will continue to voice myself on that. The releasing of information is ridiculous, and the owners deserve to be called out on that. But the players are where the root of all this sludge comes from. That’s where there needs to be a change. If these players decided that they didn’t need to listen to their manager, and they could go and eat fried chicken and have a couple of beers (there’s no way it was just 1 Jon Lester, sorry, but that’s a lie for PR), then something has to be done to re-emphasize that these players are adults making millions of dollars a year to play a game. Jon Lester basically said that these players need a babysitter, that they can’t be trusted to do their jobs. That is just pathetic, when you think about a grown man acting like he is 10 years old. These players want to be able to do whatever they want, as long as that means they don’t have to go to work or be held accountable for their mistakes. They had that chance with Francona, as he would defend his players and their performance on the field ever day he was the manager of the Red Sox. Now that Francona’s gone, you are seeing exactly what the Red Sox didn’t want us to see. The players and the front office did not expect to have this type of information come out, and without Francona to defend his players you are seeing upper management throwing their once great manager under the bus to protect their players. The time for action is now. The owners of this team should stop protecting their players, and start holding those players accountable for their shameful performance on the field. If the owners had simply done this from the beginning, then you wouldn’t have seen the information about Francona come out. Red Sox nation does not care nor want to know about all of these goings ons in the clubhouse or with Francona, we just want to see results. If this information was not released, and the Red Sox were to get rid of Francona for reasons I’ve stated earlier, and then Lackey, Beckett, and Varitek to try to clear up this clique, and the Sox went out and won a World Series, no one would have a bad thing to say about the Sox. The PR games need to stop at Fenway if they want to see a playoff game at Fenway.