Dan Shaughnessy’s latest Boston Globe column begins with some not-quite-revelatory observations about Red Sox starter/punk Josh Beckett (“a pariah oathed more than LeBron James, Albert Haynesworth, and the Sedin twins. He is the poster boy for chicken and beer, the man who got Tito fired, and the guy who plays 18 holes when he’s too hurt to take his turn in the rotation. He’s the stubborn Texan who’ll never give us the satisfaction of an explanation. He is a guy who gets booed when he comes out of a game with an injury”), but concludes with a bizarre aside regarding manager Bobby Valentine. To hear the CHB tell the tale, the big thing keeping Boston fans from embracing Valentine was the skipper’s prior reluctance to publicly embrace…Dan Shaughnessy!
Late Tuesday afternoon, as I stood near the dugout with a Comcast microphone in my hand, Bobby came up from behind me, looked over my left shoulder into the camera and exclaimed, “It’s not true! I’m not trying to get fired, folks. It’s not true, it’s not true! It was all made up by him! It’s not true.’’
It was TV gold. John McNamara hated me more than Vicente Padilla hates Mark Teixeira and he never did anything like that.
Bobby is flexing his muscles. This is good. He got thrown out of the finale in New York. Tuesday night he took Ryan Sweeney to task for punching a door and fracturing a knuckle.
“It comes under knowing the difference between right and wrong,’’ Valentine said.
Good. Stick up for Beckett. Brag about the contribution of Mortensen, who came up from the minors for a day to rescue Beckett. But defend yourself against the media and call out your players when they deserve it. Fans will embrace this version of Bobby Valentine. And if the Sox can string together a few more wins, fans will be happy to hop aboard the Magic Ciriaco Bus.