Today's cover of the Globe speaks volumes. Boston Globe Screenshot
Solace has been fleet for the citizens of Boston lately. It was just last Thursday night that our subway caught on fire, causing dozens to suffer from smoke inhalation, and thus resulting in significant train delays for days to follow. The MBTA is already a system heavily under strain, and stories like this have moved passed the realm of normal, and are now just expected. Daily I'm being told by both conductors & robots alike of significant delays that lie ahead during my daily travels. I used to chalk up these inconveniences to the rigors of city life, however, when it's happening four out of five days a week something larger seems to be amiss.
Suffice to say that I wasn't shocked when I learned Saturday that the infection of ineptitude our city is run on has spilled over to our very own water supply. We're being told that this contamination is due to a breach in a pipe out in Weston that's - get this, only seven years old. Amazing isn't it? The event is being described as 'Catastrophic' and a subsequent State of Emergency has been imposed on the Greater Boston Area, affecting nearly two million residents. Ironically, a State of Emergency has also been imposed on the residents of Red Sox Nation, population unknown.
Last March, in the final throes of the Manny Ramirez era, I wrote tepidly about the State of both the Red Sox and their fans. One of my first questions was if the Red Sox were boring or not, and unfortunately, that question has become a statement.The Boston Red Sox are a boring team to watch.
I've been a large proponent of the Bill James Era in Boston, and believe that you need to look at large sets of data to properly understand what you're looking at, however - I think it's finally time to admit that our noses may have been a little too deep in the numbers. Since 2004 the Red Sox have fielded Teams that have been less fun to root for and watch with each succeeding year. This may work for Belichick and the Patriots, but they're only playing once a week for a limited time of the year. If you're a Red Sox fan they live with you on a daily basis, and watching them fail night after night, for four plus hours, is not a very enjoyable way to pass the time.
Maybe if they were more likable it'd be easier to endure these down times, however, their personality is pure vanilla, and the discontent emitting from the millionaire veterans on our bench is infecting the greater part of the Team and fan-base. Theo Epstein should have his genius card revoked. David Ortiz, Jason Varitek, and Mike Lowell being locked with the money they're making is a crime. This caused (forced) the Red Sox to try and plug holes with guys like Adrian, Cameron, and Scutaro. Those are all great players, however, they don't scream "Championship" when you see them in the line-up. It all seems like a cheap fix to a bigger problem, which is ironic.
To think, this is all coming in a year where the Red Sox players are making more money than ever before. It all points to poor management in my book, and when you're spending money like they are, you're not allowed to call it a "rebuilding year", when in fact it's a "Recover from numerous mistakes we made year". I expect the Red Sox sellout streak to end this season as well, because again, they're just not a fun bunch to root for, and when they're not winning, it's much less in vogue for pink hats and businessmen to be at the games.
When flipping over to NESN from the NBA or NHL playoffs it's laughable, and is the most distinct line drawn between what entertainment and habit is. Maybe it's not fair to compare May baseball to the playoffs of other sports, but that's whats competing with baseball right now, and baseball's losing big. Shit, the NFL beat everyone last weekend by moving their draft to prime-time, making a full blown gala of it, which further cements football as the New American Sport, for better or worse.
They're saying now that our water supply should be fixed within 48 hours, unfortunately for the Sox, their contamination can't be fixed in that brief of time, and you just hope they don't have to boil their water for too much longer, because from the fans I've been speaking to, we're already past the boiling point.