Wrong Place at The Wrong Time – Boston Red Sox Fire Manager Bobby Valentine

 

Bobby Valentine, former Red Sox Manager

It was an uphill battle from the start and unfortunately for Bobby Valentine the climb has ended. The Boston Red Sox have announced the firing of Valentine as manager after one year on the job. One extremely long year.

 This comes as no surprise to anyone who follows baseball and I have to even applaud Valentine for hanging in there until the very end this year. He’s a good baseball guy with a solid track record. He also can come off as arrogant and confrontational. That just wasn’t a good mix for someone to take to the Red Sox and be their manager, not this year and not with that team.

The Red Sox finished the year in last place of the AL East division with a 69-93 record. That won’t get it done in Boston.

 When Valentine accepted the manager’s position in Boston, he knew what he was walking into. The Red Sox had just parted ways with long-time manager Terry Francona and general manager Theo Epstein respectively. Valentine was inheriting a roster that wasn’t his and not anywhere prepared to for his in your face managerial style. The Red Sox thought they could shake up a team that may have tuned out Francona’s voice with someone like Valentine. This proved to be a major mistake.

In fairness to Valentine, the Red Sox were a team hit hard by injuries in 2012. Valentine never was able to find a starting lineup to put on the field consistently. However he also clashed with his players and at times rubbed them the wrong way. These were players who were used to running through walls for their former manager, not for the new guy on the block.

 To fire a manager after one year is a statement move. It means that things were so bad in that one year that you just can’t take the risk of letting that person lead the team any further. Valentine was indeed that bad. The Red Sox needed to just turn the page and move forward.

 The Red Sox can still turn things around and bounce back next year. If they can put the right person in place for the job, they’ll still have Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz as team leaders and not to mention they will also have saved over $250 million worth of salary from parting ways with Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, and Carl Crawford earlier this year via that major trade with the Dodgers.

 The Red Sox just need the right guy for the job and Valentine just wasn’t that guy. He was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Motivation 101 > Derek Jeter

“There maybe people who have more talent than you, but there’s no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do.” – Derek Jeter, New York Yankees  Shortstop

Congrats to the New York Yankees , 2012 AL East Division Champs

 

Moneyball is Back – Don’t Look Now, Here Come The Oakland A’s

Oakland A’s – 2012 AL West Division Champs

Came back from 13 games behind to catch the Texas Rangers on the last day of the season to win the AL West division. Congrats to the Oakland A’s. General Manager Billy Beane consistently finds a way to field a winning team with a low budget. Moneyball strikes again!!

 

Miguel Cabrera Wins Baseball’s First Triple Crown In 45 years.

Was starting to think I’d never see a Triple Crown winner in baseball during my lifetime, Congrats Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers !! Hand that man his MVP Award too while we are at it.

Turbulent Times For The New York Jets

 

Santonio Holmes is gone for the season and the Jets need to find answers and fast. (Image Credit – AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

I’m sitting here trying to think of something nice to write about when it comes to the current state of the New York Jets. I’d have an easier time getting the Republican Party to let Bush endorse Mitt Romney with a speech on national television.

 One month into the 2012 NFL season the Jets are the walking wounded. It’s hard to believe that this team is actually 2-2 right now and not 1-3 or even 0-4. They’ve lost their two best players on offense and defense respectively, still can’t run the ball, and a starting quarterback with no one to throw to.

 Oh … and then there is Tim Tebow.

 These are the 2012 New York Jets. This is the team that head coach Rex Ryan so proudly declared is the best team he’s had since taking the job. This is a team that is coming off a 34-0 loss at home to the San Francisco 49ers. This is a team that could very well be planning for the 2013 NFL Draft very soon.

 Injuries do happen to teams and unfortunately the Jets were hit as hard as can be hit by that this year. They lose cornerback Darrelle Revis for the year in week 3 to a torn ACL. They lose wide receiver Santonio Holmes in week 4 to foot surgery for a Lisfranc injury which has altered the playing career of many athletes. These were the Jets two best players on the roster.

 There is no replacing Revis and what he brings to the table. He’s a shutdown cornerback and one of the best in the game. However the Jets dropped the ball with their wide receiver depth. Tight end Dustin Keller has yet to play this season because of injuries and Holmes was the only reliable target for Sanchez to throw to this season. The Jets now are left with Stephen Hill, Chaz Schilens, and Jeremy Kerley. Meanwhile Plaxico Burress, Chad Johnson, and Terrell Owens are out there and available.

 Oh but wait … the Jets did sign a wide receiver. Jason Hill.

 I won’t say much more about that because I’m leaving that for my thoughts on the Tebow-Sanchez soap opera in a later post, so I’ll just finish with this …

 Deep Breath … Get Mark Sanchez someone to throw the football to!!! Someone we know !!!

 It’s not impossible that the Jets can surprise everyone and win some more ballgames. I just don’t see it happening with that current roster. Optimism is one thing, denial is another. The Jets are about as close to denial as one can be.

Motivation 101 > Jerry Rice

“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.” – Jerry Rice, Hall of Fame NFL Wide Receiver

Tony’s NFL Week 4 Radar > Seahawks, Vick, Mario Williams, Green Bay

Seattle’s defense led by Chris Clemons has made the road a little easier for young starting quarterback Russell Wilson.

Week 4 Radar:

 Which players and teams are on my radar this week in the NFL?

 Seattle Seahawks

 I like what’s going on out in Seattle so far this season. Maybe it’s the new uniforms or something, I don’t know yet. The Seahawks get after it on defense and it’s been fun to watch so far. They put a serious beatdown on Aaron Rodgers this past Monday Night in that controversial win over the Packers that saw their defensive effort take a backseat to the replacement refs and the crazy conclusion to the game. The Seahawks defense sacked Rodgers 8 times in the first half, 4 of those sacks were from defensive end Chris Clemons. It was a beast-mode type of performance.

 The defense is at the top of the league statistically so far and that’s allowed for head coach Pete Carroll to bring along his young starting quarterback Russell Wilson at a slow pace while putting the weight of the offense on running back Marshawn Lynch. The Seahawks head into St. Louis to take on the Rams.

Michael Vick

 The Philadelphia Eagles have a big Sunday night game at home against the New York Giants and I’m curious to see which version of  Michael Vick takes the field. Will it be the Vick that played so well two seasons ago that the Eagles had to reward him with a new contract and the keys to the offense? Will it be the Vick that so far this season has been a turnover machine whenever he’s on the field?

 The Eagles have found ways to win despite the mistakes from Vicks, however that won’t last for much longer. Vick knows he’s going to have to take better care of the football and make better decisions out there. The pressure is already on as it seems everyone knows that the Eagles have a backup quarterback named Nick Foles that has a great deal of potential. Head coach Andy Reid made it clear that Vick is his guy, however football fans all know that in the NFL it’s NOT FOR LONG when the type of mistakes are continuously made such as the ones Vick has been making.

Mario Williams

 The Buffalo Bills gave Williams a lot of money to get after the quarterback and make plays for their defense. They gave him $100 million dollars to do that and so far he’s been pretty quiet. Williams did show some life against the Cleveland Browns last week, however a big game against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots could go a long way in helping him and the Bills.

Green Bay Packers

 This one is a no-brainer for me because everyone will be watching to see how they respond this week after that horrible loss in Seattle on Monday Night Football. The Packers are 1-2 and even though they arguably shouldn’t be, the reality is that they are. Aaron Rodgers took a beating in that loss to the Seahawks and the Packers are going to need some help from their running game. I’m looking to see Cedric Benson get the football much more than he has so far this season.

 What makes this game even more interesting is that they happen to be playing a team desperate for a win right now, the 0-3 New Orleans Saints.

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