Last night, on the Bobby Valentine Show
Tom Caron: So, Bobby. Hows it been managing a guy like Dustin Pedroia this season? Coachs dream, right?
Valentine: Oh yeah, you know. Dustins been great. Hes really getting out there and leading this club, and really does just about everything you need.
Caron: Yup. That sounds about ri
Valentine: The thing about Dustin, though. Hes just so small.
Caron: OK, th
Valentine: And I think thats going to hurt us at some point this season.
Caron: Umm. Wow, so do y
Valentine: All things being equal, I just like my second basemen a little taller Toby Harrah, Julio Franco, Edgardo Alfonzo. Thats just my preference. So when it comes to that position, well see what we can do about getting a little more size out there.
We now take you live to Fenway Park
Reporters: Bobby! Bobby! Have you spoken with Dustin this morning?
Valentine: Yes, yes. We spoke. And listen, this is such a misunderstanding. I explained that to him, and that was that. Were moving on.
Reporters: Bobby! What do you mean misunderstanding? You said he was too short . . .
Valentine: Guys, listen. You know, this has all been taken the wrong way. Honestly, I just thought I was answering a question. I never knew people would actually listen to the answer! This wasn't my intention, and I told Dustin that. Im not sure if he believes me, but thats the truth.
Reporters: But Bobby
Valentine: Heres the thing that you guys dont get, and what I explained to Dustin. I wasnt saying that hes too short. I said you know he was too small. Yeah, thats it. Its just that sometimes, he just uhh he crouches down a little too much out there. Right? You know, small? Hes ummm he makes himself so much smaller than he really is. And as a former middle infielder, you know, I just, uhhh, that just seems little inefficient. And thats what I meant. Id like him to be a little bit more upright. And moving forward, Im going to do my best to see if we cant get him to play a little taller.
Of course this didnt really happen.
But given the circus we watched unfold yesterday, its not too far-fetched, right?
Oh. It is?
OK, well then lets just move on.
Not back, to what actually happened yesterday, to all the bombs, back-tracking and confusion that filled Fenway Park. That story's way passed overkill anyway, and the truth is that we'll probably never get the truth. My guess is that it falls somewhere between our original assumption and Bobby's BS explanation. That his intentions were neither as malicious as everyone initially thought, nor as innocent as he ultimately claimed. But either way, it's time to move on.
Hell, the Texas Rangers are in town. The two-time defending AL champion Rangers. The 8-2, second-best-record-in-baseball Rangers. Not to mention, despite taking three of four from the Rays, the Sox are still only 4-6. They're still in last place.
This is an enormous series on the horizon, one that dwarfs, or at least should dwarf any petty behind-the-scenes drama between a loose-lipped manager and exceedingly malcontent veteran. So let's treat it that way. Let's put it in the past.
But as part of moving forward, let's also lay out one ground rule for any and all future Bobby Valentine-related drama:
Ignorance is no longer an excuse.
If he wants to keep doing things his way. That's cool. If he wants to lift the veil that Terry Francona had stapled to the floor of that clubhouse, hold players publicly accountable and give Boston and its fans an unfiltered perspective of what he sees in his team. All the power to him.
The Red Sox didn't bring him here to be Francona. For better or worse, they brought him here to be Bobby Valentine. So if Bobby Valentine thinks the best way to get his team to play for him and with each other is to continue making vague and enigmatic statements about his players in the media, then he should. He should do it his way and achieve the success he has planned for himself and this team, or go down guns blazing.
But he should never be surprised by the reaction.
"I never thought this would become a big deal."
"I wasn't trying to be critical."
"I should have said this."
"I really meant that."
It doesn't work. Not anymore. It barely worked yesterday.
If Valentine's as smart and aware as he'd like us to believe, then there's no longer any question in his mind as to what constitutes a "big deal" in Boston, as to what will be taken the wrong way, blown out of proportion and morphed into an immediate and enormous controversy.
He should have known that already. But has to know that now.