Merloni: Tito, Theo deserve some blame


Merloni: Tito, Theo deserve some blame

The Red Sox' stumble down the strech is "everyone's fault", says ex-Sox infielder Lou Merloni . . . and that includes both manager Terry Francona and general manager Theo Epstein.

"There are mental mistakes that this team is making thatthey should just not be making," the current WEEI Radio host told Michael Felger on'Sports Sunday'. "When a team doesn't play fundamental baseball well, unfortunately it's a reflection on a manager. It is. It's just the way it is."

Nor did he spare Epstein any criticism.

"The dropoff in talent from the starters to the reserves on this team that everyone thought was great and didn't feel like making a move or doing anything at the trade deadline, maybe is one of the reasons for the collapse, too," he said.

"They don't have any bodies right now down the stretch. They barely have big-league arms to use in a pennant race."

But he wasn't willing to spare the players, especially the healthy ones.

"Daniel Bard's . . . losing his mind in the last twoweeks," said Merloni. "Jon Lester's got to pick it up. I'm sorry. He's healthy. But he losttwice now to the Tampa Bay Rays in the last week. Outduel someone. You're Jon Lester.You're one of the aces on this staff. Go out and outduel someone. Win agame yourself."