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One wouldn’t expect a spring training game between the Red Sox and the Marlins to be eventful. They play in different leagues, don’t have a history of being rivals, and couldn’t be on further ends of the success spectrum.
Then again, not every spring training game gets a “super premium” designation; apparently tempers run hot when as much as $12 per ticket (!) is at stake.
First, the Marlins were “outraged” over the lineup the Red Sox fielded when the two teams squared off on Thursday, because it didn’t have the required minimum of four major league players. Then, because Boston teams seem unable to let such stories peter out of the non-stop media cycle, John Henry took to Twitter to respond:
They should apologize for their regular season lineup.
— John W. Henry (@John_W_Henry) March 8, 2014
Mr. Henry, if you happen to be reading this (just play along, will you?), might I ask if you really need to get into a war of words with the lowly Marlins, winners of a grand total of 62 games last year? And that’s even after Miami spent hundreds of millions of dollars on free agents in the 2012 offseason, only to be forced to have a fire sale half a season later because they still couldn’t compete. You’re the defending World Champion! What are you doing thumbing your nose at them?
No, of course you’re not wrong. Everybody’s thinking it, you’re just saying it. But all the more reason you should just stay above the fray! There’s no need for you to point out that Giancarlo Stanton might break Barry Bonds’s record for intentional walks in a season because there’s no one in that lineup who can protect him. (Apologies to Salty. Speaking of Jarrod, hasn’t he been through enough when you snubbed him with lowball offers? Now you have to trash his new team, and him by association? Playing on the Marlins is punishment enough.)
Your pockets are billions of dollars deep and you own one of the most iconic franchises in major league baseball. Stop taking pages out of Larry Lucchino’s book; it doesn’t suit you.
I could understand if you’re a little bitter that the team you sold back in 2002 won the World Series the very next year, and now has the publicly funded stadium that you were hoping for.
But if you’re going to say something, at least run such passive-aggressiveness through the official Red Sox Twitter handle. That way you can always make the lowly social media employee the fall guy, yet still hit the retweet button. Win-win — it’s what champions do.