Valentine regrets tenure
Says he should not have taken Red Sox job
Good morning, all! It’s Frriiiidddaaaayyyyy!
Let me write at the top, I have always been a Bobby Valentine fan; admired all that he has accomplished, enjoyed his hubris and the enthusiasm he brings to God’s greatest gift- life. Truth be told, about 20 years ago, I was the master of ceremonies at which Bobby was the guest speaker at a fundraising banquet for the University of Hartford’s baseball program. Fast forward five years later and Bobby paid a visit to the New Britain Rock Cats broadcast booth, where Jeff Dooley and I were broadcasting the game. He remembered me, immediately. Without my prompting, he recalled the UHart event and some of the details from that night, including that future Hall of Fame player Jeff Bagwell (UHart alum) was in attendance. How can you not admire someone like that?
The point is, Valentine has never been afraid to take a chance, in an illustrious career that has included being one of the greatest athletes in Connecticut scholastic history, a promising major league baseball player, whose career was cut short by injury, a major league baseball manager in both the United States and Japan, a broadcaster, a successful restaurant owner - he is credited with inventing the wrap - an expert ballroom dancer and now the athletic director at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT. But like everyone else, even Valentine has his regrets, one of them was taking the reigns as manager of the Boston Red Sox in 2012.
It has been nearly a decade since a divided Red Sox ownership hired Valentine for that one disastrous season. Boston finished last, the ballclub revolted against Valentine, and he was fired the day after the end of the season.
In the April 22 edition of the Boston Globe, Stan Grossfeld penned an excellent piece about Valentine’s Boston tenure and what he is doing now as Sacred Heart AD.
“I shouldn’t have taken that job to begin with. I should have stayed at ESPN, where I was making $2.5 million and didn’t have a care in the world, instead of working my ass off and not being appreciated for seven months of my life.”
When Valentine took the Sacred Heart AD job just months after being bounced by the Red Sox, there were some who predicted he would not last long in that position. Seven years later, he has pumped life into that program and is still going strong. At age 70, he is not done yet, telling Grossfeld he is considering a run for mayor of his hometown of Stanford, CT.
Whatever is next in Valentine’s chapter his has been a life well lived, and in many cases it is just beginning.
Sorry may not be enough
The blowback from the now decomposing effort by some of the world’s elites to form a super soccer league continues, and saying “sorry” may not be enough. John Henry, owner of the Liverpool Football Club of the English Premier League - one of the club’s which would have had automatic entry each summer into the European summer tournament - issued an impassioned video apology earlier this week. But for fans and former players “I’m sorry” is not cutting it.
“This is just the beginning. The supporters will not forgive the people who decided to go for this idea. They will not forgive them, because they come on, talk a good game, tell us how much they love their football clubs, how much they are behind it and for the long term, and they’ve been shown to be people who would take the quick money. They would sell their soul, basically.”
-Graeme Souness, winner of three European Cups playing for Anfield
Me thinks the fallout from this gross misjudgment of the soccer fan is just beginning. As for Henry, who also owns the Red Sox, criticism of his baseball team will seem mild compared to the avalanche of criticism he is receiving on the other side of the pond.
More holes than Swiss cheese
As the New York Yankees continue their imitation of the 1965 Yankees, ardent observers should not be surprised. The starting pitching, mediocre at best, has been abysmal. But to those expressing dismay over the offense missing in action, it is time to face reality; Yankees’ hitters have more holes than Swiss cheese. In last season’s playoffs, Tampa Bay pitching exposed the weakness of the supposed Yankees vaunted lineup. Throw them fastballs up-and-in to set them up with off speed pitches away or tie up their sluggers with inside fastballs, which they invariably swing at, and you have the recipe to stop their hitters cold.
Baseball is a constant game of adjustments. Players who possess the talent to adjust, survive. Those who do not adjust, seek other careers. At the rate the Yankees’ hitters are going, many of them may need to dust off their resumes, no matter how much faith in them is being shown by GM Brian Cashman and manager Aaron Boone. For that matter, it might not be a bad idea if Cashman and Boone look for their resumes too.
On that note, I hope you have a great weekend and thank you for your support!