ESPN - Our long (not so national) nightmare is over. Red Sox win! Red Sox win! Red Sox win! The beleaguered players admitted it has been tough to sleep since the losses began mounting. Losing often breeds doubt and negativity, so general manager Theo Epstein, a normally low-key and somewhat elusive figure in the Red Sox clubhouse, made a rare foray into his team’s inner sanctum and delivered an impassioned pregame speech to remind them they are a championship-caliber team that would emerge stronger from their recent struggles. Slugger David Ortiz said Epstein’s words were both inspiring and surprising. “I was shocked,” admitted Ortiz. “Theo doesn’t talk. Sometimes he walks right by you and doesn’t see you.” If the general manager had been speechless over his team’s recent play, who could blame him? Epstein went out and assembled a lineup that cost $160 million and was forecasted to be the best in baseball. The pressure was mounting. The Sox came home with some trepidation, unsure how their discerning fans would respond to a team that was clearly scuffling. Epstein’s pre-emptive move to bolster his players was met with almost universal approval. “Once in a while the lead man has got to light the fire,” said Jonathan Papelbon, who pitched a dominant ninth inning to close out the win. “Thats what he did. He let us know we’re a good team. And when it comes from the top, it trickles on down.” David Ortiz has been down this road before. His notoriously slow starts have led to wild speculation in recent years that he was all done, that he could no longer hit, only to rebound in the final months to post respectable numbers. “Before I saw it totally differently,” Ortiz said. “Before it was, ‘What the [expletive] is going on? People want to go crazy after 10 games.’ But now I see it. This is the Boston Red Sox, not the Pittsburgh Pirates. I’m not trying to say anything bad about their organization, but you know what I mean. “Every hit, every play, every at-bat, every swing, these people, they care. They worry about everything, and sometimes it gets out of hand. “Trust me, there were a lot of sad faces these past six games. Even [with] the guys who had good games.” The theory is that once the new players settle into their new uniforms and their new routines, the Red Sox will come together and begin to resemble the team that so many baseball experts predicted would win 100 games.
So the Sox break out of the terrible, terrible slump, and they do it over the Yankees. Sweet. But I’d really like to know more about this speech Theo gave than anything. I didn’t even see the game, I was working, but if this speech is what lit the fire under these guys asses to win, then I wanna know what was said. Because I can’t imagine quiet, squirrely, little Theo making a Al Pacino in “Any Given Style” kind of speeches. He’s not gonna be the guy in the trenches with the players that is fighting side by side to eek out a win. The only thing I can picture is him going the fuck off in the locker room. Just apeshit nuts all over these sorry saps. All down in the dumps after going 0-6, feeling bad about themselves. Then Theo comes kicking the door in, shoving Carl Crawford’s contract in his face, dick whipping the starting rotation, and making death threats to Youk. Just going all Full Metal Jacket on their ass. That’s the only way I see this going down. For it to impress Paplebon that much, you know it must have been a serious meltdown on the team. Well done Theo. You single-handedly whipped this rag tag crew of misfits together and got immediate results. We might be 1-6, but we’re 1-0 against New York, amiriight??