Ethics Dunces: The Boston Red Sox

The bloody sock…

(Never let it be said again that I allow my personal biases to affect my ethics criticism….)

Last night, the Boston Red Sox had the ceremonial first pitch of Game #2 of the World Series thrown en masse by seven members of the 2004 World Series winning Sox, the team that ended Boston’s  86 year World Series championship drought, forever banishing the franchise’s reputation as the team that could never quite manage to win the final game. David Ortiz, Pedro Martinez, Tim Wakefield, Jason Varitek, Kevin Millar, Keith Foulk and Alan Embree received the cheers of the crowd, but perhaps the biggest symbol of the team’s achievement of all, pitcher Curt Schilling, was absent. Schilling was the warrior who started two crucial games (One on the way to beating the Yankees in the league championship series, and another against St. Louis in the World series), winning both, with his ankle tendon crudely stitched to his skin to keep it stable, as blood seeped into his sock for all to see. It is one of the great moments of on-field sacrifice and heroism in baseball history.

How could they snub Schilling, of all players? Was he invited? “Nope,” he tweeted to a fan who asked during the game. “No worrries though, great to see @45PedroMartinez, @davidortiz and @KMillar15  though.”  “Oh,” he added, “and I get to keep my 3 rings and 3 trophies, so it’s all good.”

Not really. Schilling was obviously insulted, and should have been. “Were my feelings hurt? In one sense, yes, not being able to be on the field with the men who I will always share …2004  with and not being able to once again thank the folks who paid for the tickets and whose lives changed with ours sucks,” Schilling  posted on Facebook today.

The team, through a spokeswoman, denied an intentional snub. “The ceremonial first pitch started with a couple of 2004 guys and then grew organically as we learned of other ’04 players who were planning to be at the ballpark for Game 2. There was no blanket invite to the entire team,” she said, “and no slight intended to anyone not included.”

What utter BS.

If that were true, then the Red Sox PR department is populated by morons, and we know it is not. The team is extremely savvy in its public relations, and it had to know that Schilling’s absence would be noticed and criticized. But Red Sox ownership, and much of its management presumably, tilts hard leftward, as the recent disgraceful removal of  the name “Yawkey” from a street boarding the Fenway Park, an insult to the man and the family most responsible for the team’s enduring popularity, and an act worthy of enshrinement in the Ingratitude Hall of Fame. Curt Schilling, in contrast, is an outspoken and not especially diplomatic arch-conservative. This has so far kept him from being voted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame, where he unquestionably belongs, and lost him his job with ESPN, after some politically incorrect political jibes and criticism of Hillary Clinton on social media. (A  scandal involving Rhode Island investing gobs of state money in his game company, which promptly went bankrupt, probably didn’t help.) Now the team that owes hims so much—Schilling’s pitching while injured almost certainly curtailed his career—has decided that that being a Donald Trump fan even disqualifies a genuine local sports hero from being properly respected, honored and remembered.

Schilling,to his credit and his pain, is defiant, writing last night and today,

“What they did, or did not do, tonight was done 100% on purpose and completely expected … But ANYONE that knows me knows that whatever you think of my beliefs and integrity and my word, anyone that knows me knows how I feel about them. They are, in my opinion, the core of a man…One thing I do know for a fact. Most every night of my life I have slept soundly. That’s not to say I’m perfect, I’m FAR from it and always will be but my dad told me that would be the case going in. But I’ve held true to my loves, passions, beliefs and faith in a world desperate to make people abandon all of them. People say ‘you paid the price’ and I honestly disagree. What I’ve been able to experience is so far beyond anything i could have ever hoped for….I wanted to write this because I have been overwhelmed with DM’s, PM’s and texts to a level I had no concept of, of people apologizing for the Sox. No need. I will sleep soundly again tonight.because I know what I did in 2004, the men on that field know what I did … I don’t need a ceremony to know what we did that year.

“So no, I didn’t get invited, I didn’t get snubbed. I just didn’t get an invitation from a few ‘weak’ men who’ve spent their entire lives paying and watching other men achieve.”

Alan Embree?

12 thoughts on “Ethics Dunces: The Boston Red Sox

  1. Schill’s the greatest. A bit of a nut, but an athlete’s athlete. He was great for the Diamondbacks as well. And Philly. Remember having him just about commit suicide in the Phillies dugout when they’d bring in that super wild reliever, Mitch Wild Man Williams? Guys in the Diamondbacks dugout would run away from him for fear he’d sit next to them and chew their ear off. He was a complete motor mouth. A local Phoenix guy. And a great sense of humor. The day after Randy Johnson fell rounding first, Schill made a chalk outline of RJ’s sprawled 6’ll’ body on the infield dirt at the scene of the fatality. Tremendous.

    So I guess I’m an arch conservative. Hmmm. I used to be considered a moderate.

  2. Okay, since you are tooting your horn about your lack of bias, I have to respond directly to what I did indirectly today: your response to valkygrrl on the calorie count was biased. You responded that her criticism was “knee-jerk” and “progressive” was thrown in there too. I think that was a bad response as both she and I (radical right-wing conservative that people think I am) had the same reaction to your calorie count summary of England’s pizza ban. I think your response was wrong.

    But, now, I can give you a Ruddigore’s pass for redeeming yourself.


    • But Jut, she didn’t read the story. That’s the point, and that’s a valid point. If you are biased, you don’t bother about the details, because you already know what you want to believe.

      However, the Ruddigore reference gets so many bonus points that I won’t argue about it.

      • My point was: she and I made the same mistake. We made it because we both relied on your description of the calorie count. I will often not click on links when I think the underlying info has been given to me, as I typically do with you. Neither she nor I read the article; both of us; your description was not the best. It was THAT, the less than ideal summary, not knee-jerk progressive reaction that caused her response. By the way, this is barely a criticism of you; I think your description was faulty, but, obviously, easily explainable. I rarely blame people for unintentional misunderstandings. They happen; and both sides gave an obligation not to misunderstand or be misunderstood. I believe you and she (and I) were operating in good faith.

        Or, even if it was a knee-jerk reaction on her part, it was not in my case. But she and I made the same mistake for similar reasons. And, call me a knee-jerk progressive…well, them there’s fightin’ words.

        I am just saying that she may have had a valid critique completely unrelated to her predispositions.

        You should acknowledge that your evaluation of her critique may have been hasty, considering that others with differing predilections had the same reaction.


        • Sure. But that’s why I put in the links, and putting in the links is one of the annoying things that makes this so time consuming.

          I agree “calorie count” was ambiguous. I left an adjective off, somehow. It made sense when I wrote it…sometimes my mind fills in what my typing leaves out. In fact, I’m going to fix the damn thing.

          • Yes, you do the work. It is often thankless. But thank you for doing it. I often find myself saying, Damn it, Jack, give me an ethics warm up!

            But, seriously, my day today: drive 80 miles to a courthouse; phone conference in another case; check court records on a criminal case; meet potential client in jail; drive another 50 miles to meet another client in jail; brief frolic and detour; sit down for lunch; read your post; go to bathroom to wash hands (unrelated); sit down to eat and read Valkygrrl’s post (which prevented me from posting the almost exact same comment; then, off to Court and another 90 minute drive to get back.

            You have your time constraints. We have ours. I did eventually read the link, but only to clarify what I had missed. I read the judge one too and it was a waste of time because I got nothing new from it. I don’t take short-cuts because I am lazy. It is a matter of time; you get that; you don’t fail to post because you are lazy; it is life getting in the way. You may have the greater burden , but you know why.

  3. One can enjoy the Red Sox success so far and still be aware that the majority shareholder of the team owns the Boston Globe, the staff of which which has wet dreams of being taken as seriously in elite circles as the NYT and the WaPo. They chortle at being the Paper of Record for Harvard and MIT, being fully aware that the real games are being played 175 miles west-southwest and 400 miles due southwest.

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