Bill Buckner

Feeding the (Blue) Monster, Part One

This was my original thinking, the only reason I'd read any book about the Red Sox would be to gain insight into Theo Epstein's approach to roster construction and player acquisition. Still, I'm a sucker for a good baseball story and I have to admit that learning about the Cubs sister AL team that suffered from the 'Curse of the Bambino' had it's appeal, if for no other reason than  this old Billy Goat's misery loves company.

Seth Mnookin's 2006 book, 'Feeding the Monster' is an in-depth look at the Red Sox, focusing on team management and the eventual 2002 ownership change as the reason their drought ended. The Red Sox truly overcame urban legends created by the Boston press with their constant harping on eight decades of Epic failures and generations of fan misery.

Something I understand (except for the "overcame" part).

Now with the Theo "Compensation-gate" mostly completed, this book is filled with insights into the personalities behind what should have been a simple and quick front office only transaction (with no compensation as you will soon read). Why it became a bollixed, vitriol filled, press inflated, word-slinging mess that only Boston is known for makes more sense to me after this read.

There is a lot of story to set up before Theo Epstein jumps in, so prepare for the first part of the world's longest book summary.  Most of Theo's story will be in part deux.  Part one, after the jump...

Closure For Billy Buck?

Former Cub Bill Buckner threw out the first pitch before the Red Sox home opener Tuesday against the Tigers. In a tearful press conference--lot of that going around this week--Buckner said he had finally been able to forgive the media for the brutal treatment he and his family had received following Buckner's fateful error in Game Six of the Sox' 1986 World Series loss to the Mets.

For a whole generation of fans, Buckner's connection to that Mookie Wilson-hit ground ball has obscured the fact that the guy was a terrific baseball player. The onetime Dodger played seven full seasons on the North Side after the Cubs had acquired him and Ivan DeJesus in a January, 1977 trade for Rick Monday.

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  • soler + hammel for mike trout is pretty much a sure thing. *nods*

    crunch 5 hours 10 min ago view
  • Not an inspired outing by Rondon. Seemingly got ahead of every hitter but had no swing and miss pitch today, slider had no bite.

    Somebody give Soler some smelling salts - yeesh

    Eric S 5 hours 11 min ago view
  • And...now that runner scores on a single...

    The E-Man 5 hours 22 min ago view
  • So where do you think Soler will be traded to this off season?

    jacos 5 hours 23 min ago view
  • And right on cue he throws to third with no chance to get runner on 2nd so the batter takes 2nd easily. How long has he been playing baseball??

    The E-Man 5 hours 24 min ago view
  • Man you cannot put Soler out there late in games for Playoffs. Yuch...

    The E-Man 5 hours 31 min ago view
  • Such is the life of a fatted calf...

    JoePepitone 5 hours 45 min ago view
  • fowler with a triple in the 4th...he's a HR away from a "natural" cycle

    crunch 6 hours 18 min ago view
  • ...and contreras takes one off the hand and he's in obvious pain. sigh.

    he's staying in the game, though he's wringing his hand out during breaks in the action. aside from that he seems to have no issue giving signs or tossing back to the pitcher.

    ...and he's batting in the cubs half of the following inning. sweet.

    crunch 6 hours 22 min ago view
  • his collapse started on august 21st this season...so it's a slight improvement.

    but wow, what a collapse since then...only 2 out of 7 can be considered good/decent.

    crunch 6 hours 33 min ago view
  • I'm really going to enjoy watching Hammel watch the playoffs.

    Jackstraw 6 hours 52 min ago view
  • The always combustible Jason Hammel

    jacos 7 hours 12 min ago view
  • Hammel :(

    Charlie 7 hours 14 min ago view
  • That was fun.

    Charlie 10 hours 13 min ago view
  • "home field advantage through the playoffs?"

    Except for the away games.

    VirginiaPhil 10 hours 26 min ago view
  • Eh, I read it as tongue-planted-firmly-in-cheek. VEB seems to have good heads on their shoulders.

    Brick 11 hours 34 min ago view