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Bobby Valentine Attacks the Yankees – The Spin Starts Here

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Whether you like Bobby Valentine, new skipper of the Boston Red Sox, or not, you have to admit he knows how to stir the pot and cause a commotion. Bobby V (as he is affectionately known here in New York) is a master provocateur, a spin artist of the highest caliber. Bill O’Reilly’s famous catch phrase is “The spin stops here.” Bobby’s might as well be “The spin starts here.” Believe it or not, he would not have it any other way.

It has been ten years since Bobby has managed a Major League Baseball team. In that time he has not climbed a mountain in Tibet and become enlightened; no, Bobby hasn’t changed one bit. He started talking to the press and you know there is always a game plan. There was some negative press going on about the Red Sox: beer was being banned in the clubhouse, Jason Varitek was retiring, the team blew it last year, etc. What better way for Bobby to spin things his way than to attack the New York Yankees? You can either get agitated about it or sit back and admire how crafty Bobby V can be.

Today Bobby Valentine is splashed across the headlines in the New York papers. Yankees fans are outraged that he spoke about the sacred cow Derek Jeter, and the less than sacred cow A-Rod. Jeter lied about a play being practiced by the Yankees a decade ago; who can even remember what happened last season? Varitek beat A-Rod up; I am not even sure about when or where this happened. For Bobby V the devil is not just in the details – it is the light of his life to get people agitated about them.

As a Mets fan I still like Bobby Valentine. I admire how he managed my team, how he stood up for New York after 9/11, and the way he pushed his team to be the best team it could be (even when that was difficult to say the least). All the other stuff with Bobby V is the package deal: getting thrown out of the game and sitting with a disguise in the clubhouse, for example. Saying things that he knew were going to get people angry or talking. That’s Bobby and there’s no changing him.

The problem is that Yankees fans now want to break down Bobby’s comments and defend their guys. They want to prove that Jeter did practice that play, that A-Rod didn’t get beaten up, and on and on. The problem is that is exactly what someone like Bobby wants. You argue about what he says, you get into a debate, you rage against him and the Red Sox, and he thinks he is winning. You know what, since the focus is off his team and on these silly comments, he has succeeded exactly as planned.

So take it from a Mets fan who knows Bobby V’s act – the devil is in the details. Yankees fans (and anyone else for that matter) should not get sucked in by what he says. They shouldn’t get angry and bothered and want blood, because in that way Bobby thinks he is winning, and maybe he is because it is his fault the spin gets started but it’s everyone else’s for letting it spin out of control.

One thing is for certain, the baseball season will be a lot more entertaining with Bobby V back in the picture. Welcome back, Bobby Valentine!

Photo Credit – AP

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About Victor Lana

Victor Lana's stories, articles, and poems have been published in literary magazines and online. His books 'A Death in Prague' (2002), 'Move' (2003), 'The Savage Quiet September Sun: A Collection of 9/11 Stories' (2005), and 'Like a Passing Shadow' (2009) are available in print, online, and as e-books. His latest books 'If the Fates Allow: New York Christmas Stories,' 'Garden of Ghosts,' and 'Flashes in the Pan' are available exclusively on Amazon. He has won the National Arts Club Award for Poetry, but has concentrated on writing mostly fiction and non-fiction prose in recent years. He has worked as a faculty advisor to school literary magazines and enjoys the creative process as a writer, editor, and collaborator. He has been with 'Blogcritics Magazine' since July 2005 and has written well over 500 articles; previously co-head sports editor, he now is a Culture and Society editor. Having traveled extensively, Victor has visited six continents and intends to get to Antarctica someday where he figures a few ideas for new stories await him.
  • You know, Charley, I just don’t remember that moment. I don’t remember much from that time with a baby and two jobs at the time. I think I was sleep walking through most of 2004.

  • Charlie Doherty

    Varitek didn’t technically “beat up” A-Rod. He just told him to get to first base after Bronson Arroyo hit him with a pitch the Saturday before the DNC started in Boston – I was working as a student journalist at the time and wasn’t sure I was even going to see this game near the end of July 2004 but was glad I did get to, so that’s how I remembered when it occurred.

    Anyway, A-Rod swore at Varitek and he reacted appropriately by shoving his catcher’s mitt in his face. The iconic image lives on in many photos (especially now that ‘Tek has retired). Can’t believe you don’t remember that moment, Vic!

  • What’s even more interesting, Sport, is that Boston fans call Jet head coach Rex Ryan a “big mouth,” well now they have one of their own.

  • Vic, I agree with you. Valentine is getting the response he desired. He’s annoying the Yankees. He should be an instant hit with BoSox fans.