Red Sox Chick/Toeing the Rubber

Because you always need a backup plan

Dear Érik Bédard:

Hello.  Oh, and welcome to Boston.

I couldn’t care less if you never speak to one member of the media here in Boston as long as you don’t stink. You haven’t thrown one pitch for the Boston Red Sox and already Gerry Callahan is comparing you to Albert Haynesworth (without really comparing you, but, yes, he’s comparing you*) because you dare to express your dislike of the media.  Oh, you’re a “recipe for disaster” not only because you seem to be a bit injury prone but because you don’t like to deal with crap from sports writers.  How dare you, Monsieur?

I like your new General Manager’s response to all the talk of your dislike of speaking to the media:

“Maybe he lets his arm do the talking, which is fine with us. Based on what we know, he fits in fine with his teammates. There are lots of labels in baseball. We’ve found those labels aren’t always accurate.”

The Red Sox needed a pitcher, you’re a pitcher and they got you. If you can ignore all the idiots who choose to write about you negatively because you know that’s what they’ll do regardless of whether you talk to them or ignore them, that’s half the battle in this town.

Here’s the deal from the fans:  Pitch well.  Don’t pitch horribly.  It’s as easy as that.  The number of fans who actually care about your disdain for the media will pale in comparison to the number of fans who will just be happy to see the letter “w” next to your name every five games.  Hell, even if you just pitch well enough to win, fans will have your back.  The same, as you know, can’t be said for the media.

While I’m here, I’d like to thank you for this quote from 2007 (with a hat tip Jared Carrabis for sending me to Lookout Landing, a Seattle Mariners blog that speaks very highly of you):

There will be jokes about how Bedard is too soft for the Boston environment. There will be matter-of-fact declarations that Bedard is too soft for the Boston environment. With that in mind, this Bedard interview from 2007 is interesting:

Q: Most fun city in baseball?

A: Boston. I love the stadium and the city. It’s not overwhelming like New York.

Actually, Erik, if you need an ego boost, visit the Lookout Landing page, where you will read lines like these below from someone who has actually been paying attention to your career (as opposed to those like Callahan who probably only just heard of you on July 31st and Googled you to find out how much you hate the media):

The entire Bedard experience, boiled down to two numbers. Bedard infrequently pitched. When he pitched, he was good, even when he was pitching hurt.

And he pitched hurt. He pitched a lot of those starts hurt. Bedard developed a bad reputation early on that he was never able to shake, a reputation for surliness and softness, but he didn’t deserve it. He didn’t deserve all of it, anyway, and he didn’t deserve for it to last the whole time. He was definitely surly and unpleasant with the media early on, but he got better as he grew more comfortable, and he pitched when he could. People acted as if Bedard’s injury-proneness somehow reflected on him as a person. He wasn’t blessed with Randy Johnson’s body. So what? He tried.

If you try, Erik Bedard, I can promise you that you’ll gain more fans than naysayers. So don’t be intimidated by the already negative stories coming out before you’ve even taken the mound. Stand your ground, Erik. Stand your ground and (please) don’t suck.

Looking forward to the Erik Bedard 2011 Era,

Cyn

* An aside to Gerry Callahan:  Just using Haynesworth’s name in your story is comparing the two.  There was no reason to bring him up, you get paid to write for the Herald, if you want to bitch about him have at it in a separate piece.  Adding him in here was piling on Bedard just because your pants are in a bunch over his feelings about people who do your job.  Very bad form, Gerry.  Not that I expect anything less from you.

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August 2, 2011 - Posted by | 2011 | , , ,

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