No Excuses for Opportunities Missed

Is it only me, or does it seem that more and more this generation is becoming a “excuse” dependent generation. Seems like daily there is someone or something thrown against the wall as a solidified “reason”, or possible outside influence or environmental hazard that evokes a failure or a justification for lose. Who in their right mind would have though the current demise of Red Sox Nation would be somehow find its abyss within a bath of beer and fried chicken?

Why is it we, as a Baseball Nation, do not revolt but instead act as symbolic enablers giving ballplayers the leeway for ignoring the basic human responsibility traits we ourselves have to adhere to or face punishments from public ridicule to criminal confinement. Why do we let the ballplayers our kids idolize take the short path of giving excuses to proceed their misguided rants and finger-pointing as their internal “excuse monster” looks for another victim or folly to blame instead of themselves.

Failure is a destructive force that can not live on it’s own merits, it needs the seeds of negativity to flourish grow and destroy the positives before it. I understand totally that the Tampa Bay Rays came within a few inches on two seperate occasions during the Red Sox last two contests of seeing the balance shift towards the Red Sox, possibly burying these soiled moments and excuses for another time.

By now you have heard the recent smattering of excuses from the Red Sox Nation for their late season collapse. Even before their uniforms hit the floor, the banter and fingers dissected the once harmonious Boston clubhouse, pushing some members towards the door and other cowling away from the media hoping it was all a nasty dream.

Some took the low road immediately and started to point their bony finger towards the Red Sox’s anemic rotations woes, kinks in their defensive armor, or the visual sense of emotional suicide as one-by-one of members of the Boston roster realized their mission was lost. Others took to poking holes in the fragile Boston dike which finally succumbed to the pressures and stress and released all its pent up fury drowning more than the sorrows of their faithful.

Losing a chance at the postseason on the last day, pretty much on the last play of the season brought to the surface all of the vented anger of 180 days, plus exposed to the sunlight the true unapologetic emotions of some highly regarded current Red Sox icons. It might take longer than just this off season to repair and mend this currently divided Boston clubhouse.

Casualties have begun to mount as Red Sox Manager Terry Francona threw himself on the Boston sword, taken a boatload of the blame and pressure upon his weary shoulders. This is not the way Red Sox Nation ever thought they would see their beloved “Tito” leave Fenway.

General Manager Theo Epstein, the sculptor of this current Red Sox empire is also trying to get a far away from the impending carnage as he can, possibly heading to the Windy City to take on another rebuilding project in the Northside of Chi-town. Here is a GM that most consider one of the brightest young minds in baseball doing everything short of giving up money and limbs to obtain a speedy exit stage right out of the Boston bubbling lobster cauldron.

Rumors of members of the Red Sox pitching staff eating fried chicken and drinking alcoholic beverages while watching the dismantling of their season in front of them has been met by spiraling commentary from both sides of the spectrum. What reasoning was there for someone deep within the inner circle of Red Sox Nation to unclench their hand from over their mouth and spewing out the “inside scoop”, ruined the air of trust and privacy of the clubhouse domain.

These game day actions have sent some within Red Sox Nation spiraling downward without a safety net, wondering if the rips in the fabric of the hallowed Red Sox mystic might be unrepairable. Why is it someone decided to pull the curtain back and expose the inner workings by the wizards of Yawkey Way possibly forever tainting the magic. When did the mantra “what happens in the clubhouse, stays in the clubhouse” become moot?

Instantly this accusation of pitcher’s enjoying an adult libation with fried foods has been vaulted atop the expanding Red Sox “excuse” pile, providing new justifiable set of factoids for their team’s dismal September. The essence of this unimaginable and incurable “sin” by some within the sanctum of the 2011 Red Sox have thrust up this viable excuse for those within the Red Sox Nation to decide for themselves if it is another reason for their failure and eventual fall from grace not with a bang, but with a H-bomb type implosion.

Why is it the Red Sox  players and their sulking Nation of fans feel the need to push out excuses, find reasoning for the September madness? Couldn’t it have been as simple as key games got away from them by pitchers not suited for these pressure situations? That their rotation was inadequate to battle the American League East foes over that last month. Why does there have to be a boatload of reasons for the failure instead of just the plain truth they had the weapons, but some night still found themselves under the Executioner’s axe.

I will leave you with a quote I once wrote in a paper in Composition in college: “Every organization has holes in their ever flowing fabric, but the one that mends and sews those holes with vigilance and confidence sees them hold when times are harrowed and fingers begin to wag and point.” Maybe that is something all of us need to remember.


Maybe this will help shed a at least a little bit of light upon it.
It wasn’t part of a generational need for excuses, which is still a correct theory on the current state of civilization, but just another mushroom cloud on Yawkey Way. It had been so long so we had one, we just forgot what Nuclear Winter was like.

Best part of it all for me was not the Carl Crawford implosion during the season, or even his two-game error streak. The best part is hearing the Boston excuses for his faltering, plus seeing the Rays Sam Fuld get more votes for a Gold Glove than CC….poetic justice……maybe a hair.

I agree, there’s no excuse for September other than they folded. The season ended the same way it began, period. For Carl, there’s no excuse other than he didn’t adapt. Travel schedules, press coverage, adapting to a new, natural, outdoor homefield… nah. A-Gon didn’t seem to have a problem and he came from an even ‘smaller’ market than Tampa.
At the end of the day, the manager lost his boys, the GM didn’t do enough to secure a solid rotation in the stretch run, the inmates were running the asylum and it just broke down. It happens, nuff’ said. No chicken, no beer, no excuses… The Sox need leadership, ahem, vocal leadership. Varitek is apparently no Jim Rice but oh well. It’s time for Youk, Pedey (Pap if he returns) and the (to be named later) manager to structure a no excuse clubhouse who can support their teammates, stay in shape and put the 25 guys 25 cabs routine behind them.

I was surprised when someone inside the clubhopuse spoke out about the chicken and beer gatherings. Just goes to show you when a clubhouse is divided, you never know who your true friends are. Boston will build themselves back into contention. Heck, it was only a twist of bad fate on both the Rays and Boston that got them into that September mess. If either had vaulted forward instead of posting single digit wins in April, September would never have been an issue.
Like I always say, there is a reason we play 162 games…Problem is the Boston heart and soul got lost in a few of them and their chances diminshed with them.

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