January 26, 2012

Sox: Announce Ross, DFA Atchison, Sign Bailey, Make Offer To Oswalt

Scott Atchison was designated for assignment to make room for outfielder Cody Ross on the 40-man roster.

ESPN's Buster Olney states that the Red Sox made a 1/5 offer to Roy Oswalt and a similar pitch to Edwin Jackson (although the Jackson offer may not have been official). Olney says the Red Sox
don't want to get locked into any long-term deals ... [I]f they can get an Oswalt or a Jackson at their offer price, they're OK with that. If they can't, I think they're OK with that too considering they have other alternatives at this point with the rotation.
ESPN's Gordon Edes takes a wider look at the rumours and reports.

Andrew Bailey avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year contract worth $3.9 million, with another $100,000 in incentives. There are two arbitration cases that remain unsettled: David Ortiz and Alfredo Aceves.


Maxwell Horse said...

Off topic: I know this blog primarily talks about baseball, and that when it delves into politics, it usually does so when there's at least some vague relation to a current baseball story. But I'd be interested in hearing your take on the Boston media's outrage over Tim Thomas's Dixie Chicks'-like disrespect against America, or our President, or freedom, or something. Along with many people, I was shocked to find that Thomas is some crazy political radical under the delusion that the people in Washington aren't working in our interests. Judging from comments posted under various articles, it seems that the majority of the public agree that Thomas is a traitor to the American way of life.

(I wonder if it's apparent how I feel about the topic. I'm just so subtle.)

allan said...

PeteAbe made an idiotic comment in a catch-all Extra Bases post the other day and I was going to point that out, but then I figured why bother. ... I have read nothing about it - though I saw on SoSh that Mazz apparently wants him deported or something. All I know is the guy decided not to go to the WH. (Oh, the horror.)

Maxwell Horse said...

Well, maybe it would be best not to read about it. I've read some of the reader comments under the Globe articles and listened to some clips from the WEEI site, and I was left with the impression that New England sports fans might not be very smart.

laura k said...

I was left with the impression that New England sports fans might not be very smart.

What's that you say? NE Sports fans are not unique in the history of sports in the history of the world? But no!

Seriously though, we can only hope that comments on stories and talk radio are not indicative of The People at large. Here in Canada, based on comments you'd think Bill O'Reilly could be Prime Minister here.

laura k said...

but then I figured why bother

Because one of your favourite commenters asked you to, and because it's what you do.

Jim said...

I often muse about how the "comments" section is viewed by management on the big newspaper websites. Are they de facto replacements for the original "letter to the editor"--of which we were only treated to selected samples? Are they simply considered a counting stat? How often are they held up as proof of "public opinion". Does some fat, balding, ink-stained editor (can't chomp cigars in the newsroom anymore) go up to PAbe and his ilk once a day and say "You only got 80 comments on that fucken' Dice-K bit yesterday, I need more outta ya, sport." Or maybe such messages are simply e-mailed.
Is there even a newsroom anymore?
I wonder about such things.

allan said...

I decided against it before he commented. But so ...

Abrahams's (and everyone else's) stupidity in this area really gets under my skin: "You reap the benefits of being in America, well, you damn well better respect the office (if not the man). You can't have it both ways."

Like it's written in the Constitution that all players on championship teams MUST meet the president. (When I type that out, I feel like I should write "bow before the King". That's what it is, right?)

Anyway, as if the USA isn't the fucking capital of the universe of having it both ways. Politicians preach self-responsibility while blaming lowly staffers for their mistakes. Saying children are the future while letting public schools turn to shit. Being prudes about sex education while sex is everywhere in advertising. Accepting a Nobel Peace Prize while proudly boasting about killing innocent people in more than five countries. Sportswriters who get holier-than-thou about players/money and then switch jobs for more dough at the drop of a pencil. And on and on and on and on and on ...

allan said...

I've read some of the reader comments

the worst mistake you can make. never read the comments under a mainstream news article. never never never never. NEVER! your IQ will drop a point for every minute you spend reading them.

allan said...

I often muse about how the "comments" section is viewed by management on the big newspaper websites.

More comments/hits means more visits means higher ad rates, so the more controversy (as opposed to reporting straight facts (boring!)) a writer can generate - get clicks and get people talking about what he said -- the better for the news outlet. Which is why it is vital to completely ignore the CHB and his ilk (are you listening, Allan?)

laura k said...

Jim, I wonder the same thing. I think that old-fashioned letters to the editor still "count" more and are valued more. I believe the comments serve only one purpose: to increase clicks, and therefore sell advertising. I'm guessing the editorial side (if there is such a thing anymore, as you said) doesn't care about comments at all. That's my take, based on general media cynicism.

laura k said...

Anyway, as if the USA isn't the fucking capital of the universe of having it both ways.

The US trumpets itself throughout the world as THE capital of the universe in having it both ways - the place where we are all free to disagree, to protest, to speak our minds. A "free country", we are told, unlike those enemies of freedom that the US compares itself to with pride (formerly USSR, now North Korea and Iran).

But step out of line...

Sadly, the irony is lost on the "love it or leave it" types.

laura k said...

Re comments and clickage, a friend who is a columnist at the Toronto Star has told me that certain bonus pay and good placement is tied to clickage, although not comments. Ever since I learned that, if I quote a columnist on wmtc, I only post a couple of paragraphs with a "click here for more" link.

It's fucked up, because if (for example) Common Dreams re-runs her columns, many more people read her work, but it means nothing in terms of her career.

This is extra fucked up because she's been writing forever and is quite well known.

johngoldfine said...

Invitations are by definition refusable for good, bad, or no reason. One has no obligation to be part of a photo op that helps sell a politician whose work you dislike.

The outraged writers don't want respect: they want obsequiousness.

If Tim Thomas admires Glenn Beck, he is a jerk, but his public statement about refusing the invitation was coherent, reasonable, polite, and dignified.

allan said...

If someone could post his statement, I'd appreciate it. I'd rather not wade into the muck of the reporting/opinions of the decision.

Jim said...

Yeah, thanks for the examples, laura k. A simple counting stat. with no accounting for quality (or accuracy). As you say, fucked up.

johngoldfine said...

from wikipedia:

"I believe the Federal government has grown out of control, threatening the Rights, Liberties, and Property of the People. This is being done at the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial level. This is in direct opposition to the Constitution and the Founding Fathers vision for the Federal government. Because I believe this, today I exercised my right as a Free Citizen, and did not visit the White House. This was not about politics or party, as in my opinion both parties are responsible for the situation we are in as a country. This was about a choice I had to make as an INDIVIDUAL. This is the only public statement I will be making on this topic. TT"

allan said...

Thanks, John. I don't care if he thinks like me or is a Birther or a Bagger, good for him.

today I exercised my right as a Free Citizen

So anyone faulting him for his decision - Tony Massarotti apparently used the phrase "love it or leave it" non-ironically on the radio THREE TIMES - is saying:

"Tim, this is America. You are not free to think for yourself."

Maxwell Horse said...

I'm glad I could kick off this discussion, and I'm glad to see that there are some people somewhere who aren't complete morons. (But of course, I probably wouldn't have posed the 'request' on any other site. I knew there was a good chance any responses here would not make me want to shoot someone.)

I too can't believe anyone would have a problem with Thomas' Facebook statement either. That is what the country is supposed to be about. "Love it or leave it" is the friggin' opposite of being a patriot. And man, all the people condemning him--have they been drunk for the past decade? Do they live in some CandyLand?

Seriously though, we can only hope that comments on stories and talk radio are not indicative of The People at large.

I'd like to think that, but then I catch a glimpse of American Idol, and I realize the horror.

It's disturbing how many people seem so maleable to authority or group thought. It's like their entire character, opinions and ethics included, is based on the "tone of the room." (See also the famous Milgram Shock experiments, or the recent Penn State scandal.) I wonder if the Boston media were taking the stance of lauding Thomas for "making a stand," if some of the people now screaming for his head would instead be going, "Yeah, I kind of agree with Thomas. Good for him."

laura k said...

Well, I'm not making any pronouncements on what the majority of USians (or people anywhere) think. I'm about as familiar with the underside of US culture as you can get: that's why I'm now a Candian citizen. And there's the mob mentality vs what someone will say in a more reasoned conversation - that is, if they are capable of such.

But still, even given this and everything you write (American Idol, Milgram, etc.), I would not say that what one sees in the cesspool of comments to news stories or call-in radio shows is what Joe or Jane America is thinking, any more than I would say the Tea Party represents the majority of USians. It's a sample of the worst of the worst. I think the spectrum is much broader than that.

laura k said...

It's disturbing how many people seem so maleable to authority or group thought.

It's incredible disturbing. It's perhaps my greatest fear for the US, people's love-affair with authority.

Re Tim Thomas's statement and this issue itself, johngoldfine's comment at 10:02 AM says it all. +1 x 1000000

allan said...

As I have said before, no one in the world lives by "love it or leave it". The moe-rons who say it certainly don't.

Don't like 100% of your job?

Don't like 100% of your house?

Don't like every single thing your wife or husband or partner does?

Kids make you frustrated?

Are you a bit down about your life?

Basically, if you are not completely happy with anything, then get rid of it. ... But no one does that. Except truly insane people.

Also, as I used to say (many) years ago, where did these yahoos go to live while Clinton was president? ... Oh, they are complete hypocrites and are now spewing pure bullshit? Gotcha.

Maxwell Horse said...

That's a good point about Clinton. It's so obvious, but I never thought about it like that before. I have no doubt that anyone saying "love it or leave it" have hated (possibly justified) some politician or another. And of course (preaching to the choir here) America is supposed to be about holding government accountable.

I wish I could be less cynical about my views on what the majority thinks, but I'm not that person. I guess my attitude is in regards to things that are an established status quo--if the majority of people truly opposed them, then they wouldn't be the status quo. Of course, maybe "love it or leave it" in regards to Tim Thomas might not be status quo. (But certainly American Idol is!)

9casey said...

You wonder if the the media in mass. Would have cared as much if Bush was in office.

And i dont quite get the American Idol reference. Its a tv show , are you just saying the people on there are what america is percieved to be?

Most of them are kids and also i think put on a little bit for ratings, i hope when you catch a glimpse of it you do realize that...

Someone told me the other day that wrestling was fake...I say .BULLSHIT.....

America ,in my opinion, is great just for the daily entertainment value alone..

laura k said...

if the majority of people truly opposed them, then they wouldn't be the status quo.

If only that were true! The status quo is not brought to a vote. There is no giant referendum on the whole system.

It's a very small minority of people who move the system one way or the other. Whether its big money at the top or a vocal minority at the bottom, either way, it's not the majority. The majority is usually silent and acquiescent - but that doesn't mean they approve.

laura k said...

You wonder if the the media in mass. Would have cared as much if Bush was in office.

You're joking, right? You're implying the media crucifying this guy are liberal or dems??? Oh holy cow, Casey. Think for a minute how talk radio would have acted if a player said they didn't want to visit the White House because they opposed the invasion of Iraq. (Carlos Delgado says hi.)

laura k said...

Whether its big money at the top or a vocal minority at the bottom,

Or the two combined, as we see in the anti-choice and anti-gay movements.

9casey said...

No i am saying when the dixie chicks did it the conservatives were all over them and the liberals are all over Thomas... The media is split down the middle in this country when it come to ploitics. Thats all

laura k said...

The media is split down the middle in this country when it come to ploitics.

Not so, unless you call 95% right-wing vs 5% liberal "down the middle". Or else your definition of liberal comes from the Fox News playbook.

And sports media is all on one side, and it ain't the liberal side. There is no liberal mainstream sports media in the US.

Maxwell Horse said...

9Casey, my point isn't how the individuals on American Idol behave. My point is that it's one of the most popular shows in the universe, so its idiotic content is kind of an indictment on the populace.

Offtopic to the already offtopic topic: The majority of people also seem to not have any aesthetic perceptions beyond the most superficial things--like babies, they only seem to notice if things are "shiny." And so as a species, we have discarded film and videotape as artistic, communication and entertainment mediums. So the hideous plastic, artificial, dead look of American Idol (especially on the latest HDTV) and basically all media these days, I think really are an indication of how non-perceptive the majority is.

The analogy I always come up with is if people voted to discard all our old carbon-based food and replace it with "extreme" neon-colored plastic food. And it would be then that it dawns on you, the sole "taster," that all these years no one else but yourself actually noticed that plant/animal-based food had taste, texture and nutrients. No one else missed those things after the transition because they never perceived them in the first place. They just know the new food is colorful.

laura k said...

M Horse, I agree with your perception on this (although not on the film vs video thing, as previously discussed in these pages!), with one difference. I don't think this is a new or contemporary phenomenon. I think it's always been the case, ever since there was a thing called popular culture.

Pop culture has gotten bigger and brighter and louder, because of newer technologies, but it's always been filled with loads of dreck.

When you look at art from other eras that you admire and revere, was that art popular and consumed by masses? Or was it more critically acclaimed and admired by relatively few? Chances are, from any era, your favourite movies were not blockbusters, your favourite books were not best-sellers, etc. Sometimes art or entertainment is both hugely popular and very high quality, but it's not the norm.

allan said...

No i am saying when the dixie chicks did it the conservatives were all over them and the liberals are all over Thomas... The media is split down the middle in this country when it come to ploitics.

I'm pretty sure it ain't liberals telling Thomas to get the fuck out of the country. Actual liberals are a-okay with someone thinking for himself and not sheepishly following the groupthink.

I do not listen to sports radio, but I assume it - like the sports media world in general - is extremely conservative. Individual members may not be that right-wing in person, but their work shows a clear conservative bent. (Peter Abraham strikes me this way. He has posted some poilitical opinions that I agree with 100% (often in his "sitting in the airport at 5 AM waiting to board my flight" EB posts), but when it comes to respecting the monarchy like this, he falls right in line with the jingo crowd.)

allan said...

Actually, if there are real-life liberals out there getting on Thomas for his opinions, list them here. I wanna see who they are.

johngoldfine said...

I guess we know who won't be invited!


"When it’s the former President of the United States of America making the invitations, you’re going to have folks like this showing up to the party. For the 10th installment of the George H.W. Bush Celebrity Golf Classic, held at the Cape Arundel Golf Club in the Bush family’s summer-hometown of Kennebunkport, the list of participants is scheduled to include Dave Cowens, Ray Bourque and Luis Tiant."

Maxwell Horse said...

Laura, I don't want to be an annoying contrarian, and while your point I'm sure is correct in many ways, I know that for me personally, I miss a lot of very mainstream stuff. (Including what used to be acceptable mainstream visual/sound standards.) I actually think that popular culture for the "masses" has gone downhill to an insane degree over the last decade. I used to very much enjoy television. The stuff on often wasn't the highest of art, but I could watch it and feel like the people making it were creative and cared about what they were doing. I turn on the TV now and I feel like a character in the movie Idiocracy. News programs used to not make one feel embarassed for humanity, MTV actually played music-oriented stuff instead of reality TV and the "summer blockbusters" were actually nominated for best picture and best screenplay Oscars because they were actually kind of good movies.

I sometimes see old clips of "Star Search" and I realize that I actually might on some level enjoy American Idol, if it weren't the most lurid, trashy-looking presentation ever. Hell, I enjoyed the first season of Survivor. But again, the people on TV back then actually looked like living human beings. The screaming plastic digital standard is something that only just came about relatively recently.

By the way, I realize it's kind of sad how I hijacked the original JOS post, and now I'm hijacking my hijacking. The topic could be airline food, and I will find a way to rant about digital images.

Please continue with the Tim Thomas, media, patriotism, etc discussion. It might get especially interesting (i.e. sad), if some Bruins "fans" wishes are respected and he is actually cut from the team because of the fallout from this (which is something being discussed on WEEI as a possibility the last time I listened to the Mut & Merloni show.

allan said...

By the way, I realize it's kind of sad how I hijacked the original JOS post

Please note that no one objected. I certainly didn't.

The topic could be airline food

And what's the deal with peanuts on airplanes? They don't let you take any drinking water onto the plane but the first thing they give you once you're on the plane is a snack that makes you thirsty? ...

laura k said...

MH, I appreciate your perspective, and by all means, you may be right. I wouldn't know, I gave up on mainstream TV long ago, with a few exceptions.

Culture is so fractionated now (not sure that's the right word?), so divided into tiny niches, which I think is healthy and good. It could be that what's left on network TV really is the dregs.

I do agree that TV in general used to be higher quality, that there was more decent stuff on TV, but that was when the networks had little competition. There are still a lot of very good shows, but they're not on network TV. They're made for cable then come out on DVD - but they still exist. (There's a parallel in other arts too. Exciting young writers used to flock to off-Broadway theatre - now they write screenplays and make independent films.)

But maybe you're not talking about quality writing and acting, maybe the ***dreaded word I can't believe I'm going to use*** content is not even what you're talking about. If it all comes down to digital images, well... you lost me again.

allan said...

I thought of this

It's disturbing how many people seem so maleable to authority or group thought.

when I read this quote, from Arthur Silber:

After Iraq, after Afghanistan, after Libya, after all of these horrors and many more, can the American people be led into another war? Why, it's the easiest thing in the world.

9casey said...

Tv to me has opened doors to me that otherwise i would have never gone through. I consider myself a decent cook by just watching the food network and also a decent handy man by watching numerous episodes of Holmes.

I also watched the premiere of Touch , with Kiefer Sutherland, the other night and found that quite good.

Breaking bad is good , I also enjoy the writing in Californication.

I believe there is good tv, art , and music out there you just have to look beyond some of the fluff.

But will we ever have another Seinfeld, Cheers, or honeymooners, I doubt it .

But TV and sports still give me that oulet where I can just zone out for a bit and listen...

And Mh do yourself a favor and for the love of god do not listen to Mutt and Merloni, those two are beyond awful . And say things without having reliable sources..

Boston sports radio is so far much worse than new york it amazes me...

I mean the Boston area has produced so many championships over the last decade and these dopes just tell you why all teams are going to lose.

laura k said...

9Casey makes a good point. We watched a few series this winter that were amazing - all written for cable, but it's still television. There's a lot of potential.

Good advice, too, re radio. Worse than talk radio in NYC... *shudder*

laura k said...

Why, it's the easiest thing in the world.

So true, so sad.

Maxwell Horse said...

9Casey, it's funny that you say Mut and Merloni are the worst. I don't listen to much sports radio because I hate the loutish unthinking personalities that seems to be a requirement of radio hosts everywhere. But the reason I listen to clips of M&M is becuase I honestly find them to be the least painful of the bunch. They at least don't sound like they're on mental auto-pilot. "Mut" in particular has at least a subtle earnestness. (I know I'm damning with faint praise.)

On the other hand, I used to enjoy the heck out of the Food Network. But then they gradually changed their programming. Not only aesthetically (it's now a world of plastic and rubbing alcohol mannequins) but intelligence-wise. I wish I could bring myself to watch it again because I really do miss television, but I think the last time I tuned in I lost at least 10 or 20 IQ points that I never got back. I don't remember the last time I saw a show on there that actually showed how to cook something, but it was a while ago, and I think the recipe involved mixing Miracle Whip with Corn Nuts and KFC popcorn chicken with your fists, and then topping it off with Dunkin Hines frosting and licking the whole thing off your own hands. ("We're hip and on the go! We don't have time to for fuddy-duddy stuff like utensils!")

9casey said...

and I think the recipe involved mixing Miracle Whip with Corn Nuts and KFC popcorn chicken with your fists, and then topping it off with Dunkin Hines frosting and licking the whole thing off your own hands. ("We're hip and on the go! We don't have time to for fuddy-duddy stuff like utensils!")

Ugh Miracle Whip, sad excuse for mayo.....:)

laura k said...

MH, I didn't want to seem like I was picking on 9C's comment, but I also gave up on Food Network. I used to enjoy cooking shows when they were actually about cooking. I got cooking ideas and I learned about food.

Then one day I tuned in and it was all gimmicks - quick cuts, contests, "road trips" with self-important hipster hosts. Hard to find actual food and cooking.

This was about the time I downgraded our cable package because there was less and less worth watching. We recently had a free preview of Food Network and it was even worse.

I'd LOVE to get rid of cable altogether, but we need at least the basic digital package for baseball.

But for me this is not a recent thing. You mentioned Survivor and Star Search. I'd do just about anything before I watched a minute of those shows. I haven't been into TV in a very very long time. Anything worth seeing on TV (IMO) will come out on DVD and I'll watch it on my own time.

I think I'm repeating myself, as I am wont to do, soon to be accused of needing to win an argument or getting a last word... when I am merely chatting and not even arguing. So I'd better stop now! :)

9casey said...

The one i lke on the food network everyone seems to hate and that is Alton Brown. And with the dvr I chhose only to watch the shows i want when i want, cant remeber the last time i watched live tv. And here a lot of the "cooking shows" have moved to the the cooking channel, food networks sister station.

Maxwell Horse said...

Laura K, yeah, I hope 9casey didn't take offense at my comment either. The only thing I seem to ever have a desire to watch on our cable package are the Red Sox games as well. And even then since I'm always aware how artificial the look is, I kind of have to hold my nose.

I only mentioned Star Search (as something I probably would have enjoyed if I thought to watch it when it was on; there seems to at least a humanity to it unlike Idol) ...and the first seasons of Survivor (a definite, trashy "guilty pleasure") to show that I don't personally think my standards are too high and mighty. I mean, if I could enjoy Survivor Season 1, I'm not exactly the most refined snob. So American Idol must be truly grotesque (visually, intellectually, but mostly visually) for me to reject it.

And then I turn on even "news programs" these days (like NBC's Today Show), and they're just as lurid, making the prospect of watching any TV for me non-existent. I wonder for all the millions of people who love the "new" programming, how many people there are who have simply been repelled like I have. The ratio has to be like a million to one, or else they wouldn't have made the technological (and intellectual) changes to the infrastructure at all.

Maxwell Horse said...

9casey, I used to enjoy Good Eats a lot as well. This is probably no surprise from my previous comments, but I only lost interest in it when he started shooting digitally. For me, it transformed a fun, humane program into Land of the Dead. But I know I'm pretty much the only person that had such an overt response to the show's cinematography.

allan said...

It turns out that Thomas is more Ted Nugent than Michael Moore.

Amusing bit in the article saying that the Tea Party admires Thomas for his disgust with both Rs and Ds. ... Even though the Rs (through the Koch brothers) who created the Tea Party out of whole cloth.

laura k said...

I didn't know there was a cooking channel. This thread has been very educational.

I feel bad for MH coping with the digitized world. I think it must be how I feel about the world being plastered with ads.

Maxwell Horse said...

I feel bad for MH coping with the digitized world.

It is hard. I actually think that at least some (certainly not all) people who seem okay with the new digital standard simply don't remember or have a clear picture in their head of what's been taken away, and that's why they don't put up a fuss. People forget and get acclimated to mediocrity pretty fast I've noticed, in basically all things (even government). Since art, visuals and sound have always been very important to me, I guess I just established within a clearer sense than most of how entertainment used to look/sound before the "digital revolution." This internal "point of reference" makes digital's awfulness apparent to me.

Sorta related: there was a Rolling Stone article I saved at the end of 2007 called "the mp3 challenge." The writer Joe Levy did a comparison between analog record albums and digital versions. And he was surprised how much better the analog sounded, like real music, whereas the digital felt like a fake "representation" of that music. I figure either that Rolling Stone writer was 12 years old, or over the past few years he got acclimated to the new "standard of mediocrity" of digital, hence his revelatory response.