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Dave O’Brien’s Disturbing Confession


Tampa Bay Rays v Boston Red Sox Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images

When I go to a baseball game, I like to keep score. In fact, I purchased a scorebook with the goal of eventually scoring a game in every major league stadium. Not long after I received the book, I brought it to Fenway to begin crossing venues off my checklist. Almost immediately, the Red Sox scored six runs, batting around in the process. At that point, I realized that the book I purchased only had space for nine innings. Oh well. I did what any rational person would do, used a space in the next inning. After the third out was recorded, I drew a line and continued on in the same column to get back to normal. Looking back at it now, it’s slightly convoluted but easy enough to read.

This is where Dave O’Brien comes in. On Thursday afternoon, as the Red Sox hit around in the third inning, Kevin Millar asked his broadcast partner how he should proceed with his scorecard. O’Brien, without a hint of sarcasm, told Millar that he crams it in the same box. If it were a joke, you would assume O’Brien would have come clean at some point, but he didn’t. He continued on with the game, business as usual as if that’s ordinary.

It’s one thing to reuse the same box. It’s another to share that on television and teach others that practice. At best, it’s cause for concern. At worst, it’s sociopathic behavior. If O’Brien is doing this without feeling remorse, what else is he doing? Eating bananas without peeling them? Writing Paw Patrol fanfiction? Murdering people? Nothing is off the table for the rogue broadcaster.

Tim McCarver’s scorecard for the 2011 All-Star Game is a mess, but at least he didn’t use the same box twice.

Baseball is a game built on statistics. There are entire websites dedicated to historical stats, made possible by old game logs and scorecards. We’re lucky Dave O’Brien wasn’t scoring games back in the early days of baseball. We’d probably still know who Babe Ruth is, but someone like Bob Cremins and his 5.1 career innings could be entirely lost due to OB’s reckless scorekeeping practices.

As a scorekeeper, my jaw dropped when I heard OB’s technique. Someone needs to talk to him, set him straight, and check his basement for prisoners. If he refuses to change, he should be put in solitary confinement until he learns to act right.