Earlier my esteemed colleague Cameron Martin tried to spin Devil Rays Manager “Coach Joe” Maddon’s decision on who to start in Game Five as “conceding the game to Boston.”
For those of you who don’t get satire, let me make it absolutely clear that starting Scott Kazmir in Game 5 instead of The Master Of The Modified Circle Change James Shields is ABSOLUTELY THE RIGHT CALL.
Now I could go into records this season about Shields on the road and particularly at Fenway versus at home — and that might persuade some people, as the fact that the Devil Rays hammered Tim Wakefield all three times they faced him in the regular season might’ve persuaded Francona to start somebody else — but I don’t need that.
All we need to know to know that this decision is ABSOLUTELY CORRECT is to know WHO made the decision.
Joe Maddon, the greatest manager, the greatest mind the game of baseball has ever known made this decision. And you’re gonna doubt his decision. I mean, Cam, bravo, you called the Browns beating the Giants Monday, but still sir, you are no Joe Maddon.
Think that’s hyperbole? Tell me the last time Joe Maddon made a mistake. Except for not pinchrunning for Floyd late in Game One. Other than that, the man has been the quintessence of infallibility.
Now, infallibility is a pretty big word for the Yankee and Red Sox fans in our reading audience, so allow me to offer this definition from The American Heritage Dictionary:
1. Incapable of erring: an infallible guide; an infallible source of information.
2. Incapable of failing; certain: an infallible antidote; an infallible rule.