So, let's take a quick inventory after tonight's game ... it actually holds some important lessons about 2012.
Beckett pitches pretty well for 5 innings. Then a defensive missed opportunity and a lack of bullpen support conspire to make it look in the box score like he simply can't pitch anymore.
AGon goes 0-4 and strands 4 runners, most of whom he left at a stage in the game where a key hit would have made a huge difference. Easy to look at the box score and forget how absurdly hot he's been and see him as "not clutch."
Sox go 1 for 10 with Runners in scoring position, including a flyout rocket against the wall, an at-'em ball to the CFer, a nifty little short-hop pick-up by the ss.
From the box score, they played poorly. On talk radio they lack character and inmates are running the asylum. In reality, lack of execution from secondary players and poor timing made tonight -- and this season -- look a lot worse than they probably are.
The notion that Bobby V and his relationships are driving the disappointing results seems absurd to me. Yes, he is terrible, and as I mentioned in another post, he brings almost nothing to the table that this organization would value -- completely and utterly the wrong person at the wrong time in the wrong place. But his lack of skill, and the players' (completely reasonable) unhappiness with same, are not why the team is not winning.