Mr. Hanky, you are the biggest liar south of DC.
I came out very hard against the Vtek signing for $5M before the 2009 season. You clearly have lost your mind.
Do people really think that players would come forward after the collapse and say, "Jason got in my mug a few times and told me to smarten up, get in shape, and try harder!"
Is Jason the type of guy that would come forward and say, "I got in Beckett's mug 4 times during the season, but he wouldn't listen to me!" Would that be what Mr. Hanky, Geo and others on this thread would expect and want from their team leader? To out a fellow player to the media? Yeah, that's true leadership qualifications.
If something did happen involving VTek being proactive or aggressive as a captain, there's a good chance we would not have heard about it from anyone. Maybe even Tito wouldn't have known he did it.
There is no evidence to prove that VTek did or did not actively try anything, and then on top of that, there's no evidence that if he had done it, it would have worked or made a significant difference.
The evidence presented is totally speculative: Beckett and Lester did poorly in September, so it must be because they were not determined enough to win. It's because VTek didn't force them to the gym all year to lose weight and build stamina.
What captain does that? Ever.
Guys, we had Miller (12 starts) , Weiland (5 starts), Wakefield (23 starts), Lackey (28 starts pitching injured), and Bedard (8 starts) and came 1 game away from making the playoffs. If we had spread the losses out all year, would anyone have blamed VTek for us not making the playoffs?
The nature of the "collapse" begged for assigning blame to many who live by that creed.
We lost our starting RF'er for most of the year, our star 3Bman for a crucial stretch and then watched him hit at a .525 OPS when he returned in Septemeber. Should VTek have yelled at Youk?
We lost Scutaro and Lowrie for a stretch.
We lost Wheeler for a while and he never fully recovered.
We pretty much lost Jenks all year.
We had Rich Hill pitch 9 scoreless innings, then miss the rest of the year.
In hinsight, the most amazing fact of the season was not really the collapse, it was more the hot streak we had for 4 months with all these guys missing. We actually overperformed for 4 months and underperformed for 2. Where's the credit given to VTek for those 4 months? Was any credit given to VTek for helping turn the team around in late April and May?
Did anyone even remember the specifics of April?
I'm not bashing Salty, but do you guys remember what happened?
We lost the first 8 out of 9 games started by Salty (and 9 out of 11 up to April 15th).
The team went 1-2 with VTek in that same stretch, but then won 5 straight from April 16-20th. Did anyone give credit to VTek then?
No, they only give negative points.
We then went 6-3 in Salty starts after the poor start up to April 15th, but then lost 3 straight in Salty starts (May 4-6). After May 6th, the team went 8-1 under VTek. No kudos. In fact many poster scoffed at the idea that a catcher has that much influence over wins and losses or a pitcher's performance, yet when we lose, VTek is suddenly this massive negative influential character on the team?
I don't buy it. You shouldn't either.
We went 42-22 when VTek caught most of the game. We had a losing record when he didn't. (We were 22-12 in non-Beckett games caught by VTek). In case you are thinking VTek caught all the better pitchers, think again.
PAs w VTek Salty (ERA w /VTek vs w/Salty)
Beckett 715 52 (2.62 to 7.36)
Lester 165 610 (2.48 to 3.77)
Miller 154 156 (7.28 to 4.08)
Lackey 152 591 (6.82 to 6.31) Pretty close
Dice-K 151 16 (3.82 to 31.50)
Bedard 67 84 (3.38 to 3.86) Pretty close
Wake 53 624 (4.15 to 5.21)
Weiland 22 86 (13.50 to 7.64)
Buch 88 265 (3.38 to 3.52) Pretty close
Relievers (by IP) VTek to Salty
Aceves 2,34 (42.1) to 2.82 (67.0)
Bard 1.44 (31.1) to 4.54 (39.2) You think VTek was "Josh's binky"?
Paps 2.45 (25.2) to 2.75 (36.0) Pretty close
Albers 4.00 (36.0) to 5.53 (27.2)
Wheeler 5.40 (15.0) to 4.19 (34.1)
Morales 3.14 (14.1) to 4.24 (17.0)
Atchison 5.14 (7.0) to 2.70 (23.1)
Salty caught more innings than Vtek by a 3:2 ratio. The pitchers highlighted in blue were caught at a percentage by VTek or more than 40%. The ones in black had Salty catch them at more than 60% of the time.
11 out of our top 16 pitchers by IP in 2011 did better with VTek than Salty. 4 were pretty close, so one could say VTek's record was 8-4-4(ties).
Pitchers responded to something VTek was doing, but you won't call that leadership, ohhh NOoooooo! or having a positive influence.... OHhhhh NOoooo!
"Lead by example". Doesn't exist, I guess.
Hard evidence means nothing to some of you.
Conjecture, innuendos, and media witch hunts are the gospel.
VTek was not a superstar or even a star his last 4 years, but he was a very very good back-up catcher. The evidence shows this. Your evidence is a smokescreen for venting your frustration and, for some, your hatred towards VTek.
Blaming VTek tidies things up nicely for you. You were right all along, Our team was great despite the injuries, but this damn VTek guy sunk the win-the-ring ship. Boot the bum outta here, and leave your last words for this Sox hero words of spite, hatred and disgust. Real class, boys, real class. You give Sox fans a bad name.