Earlier today, Pablo Sandoval using Instagram during Wednesday night's game became a thing. A thing I was really, really hoping would never show up here:
There will be zero words regarding Pablo Sandoval's Instagram activities published on OTM if I have my way.
— OverTheMonster (@OverTheMonster) June 18, 2015
Unfortunately, it seems I don't get to have my way, because John Farrell has decided to bench Pablo Sandoval for Thursday night's game against the Braves because, yes, he was using Instagram.
The Red Sox have hit a lot of lows this season, but to this point they had all come on the field. Disaster starts, terrible hitting, comedic errors...It was all at least baseball, which is more than can be said for the 2012 season which saw Bobby Valentine preside over a miserable soap opera/three-ring circus of a club as they crawled inevitably to a last place finish in the AL East.
But this? This is 2012 levels of stupid. It's not on Pablo Sandoval, either. He was using his phone in the bathroom. Does it break a team rule about using social media during games? Yes. Is it something just about every player on the roster probably does? Also yes. And so do you, God knows. I rarely feel comfortable making blanket statements about the activities or opinions of readers, but come on. If anything, Sandoval comes away from this looking like a saint for apologizing to the team and taking this lying down.
Pablo Sandoval isn't harming anyone by using Instagram or Twitter or Facebook or anything else in there rather than staring at a stall wall. And Farrell dropping the hammer on him here is punishment for punishment's sake from a manager who has perhaps heard too many people saying he's "lost the clubhouse." Whatever that even means.
You can be upset with Sandoval for his poor performance. His defense has been unacceptably poor, and his offense is only now starting to creep up out of that same territory. But in a season where the Red Sox are already a laughing stock, John Farrell had a chance to wave away some of the year's silliest of controversies. And instead he's made it a thing.
This season is the worst.