Boston, Beer, and Baseball

English: Bobby Valentine signing a ball at the...

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No more beer in Boston? I must apologize for not posting in a long while, but of course sometimes life happens. That being said, I decided to jump back in for the time being thanks to a faithful follower of mine. Thanks Bill. Bobby Valentine has dictated no more beer in the Red Sox Clubhouse. Kudos to Bobby V.

Baseball clubhouses are the quintessential fraternity. Once the reporters leave, what happens in the clubhouse, stays in the clubhouse. The Red Sox are not the first professional sports organization to have alcohol in the clubhouse. What then is the problem for Boston? Simple, they are the Red Sox. Just as Babe Ruth was notoriously known for his larger-than-life, off field living, drinking in the Boston clubhouse is news.

To what extent, if any, the drinking contributed to Boston’s collapse in 2011 is mere speculation on my part. The allowance of alcohol speaks to a larger organizational culture issue. In my opinion, the atmosphere was simply too relaxed. The culture today is not that of the 1950’s or 1960’s.

The Red Sox are one of the most high-profile sports organizations in American sports. Alcohol consumption in the clubhouse was bound to get out. This was never a question of if, but when. The days where reporters kept players personal behavior sacred are long gone. Valentine’s action serves another purpose: banning beer in the clubhouse brings the reality of the workplace back to professional sports. To my knowledge, there are few professions that allow alcohol consumption on the premises or during work hours. In one motion, Valentine reminded the players they are there to work….and win.

Like most stories of this nature, this will pass and become old news. The Red Sox team Valentine inherited consists of the most talent he’s ever managed. The culture in Boston has changed. Let’s see what they can do in 2012.



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