Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Feeding the Monster By: Seth Mnookin

This book is an in-depth look at the interworkings of the Boston
Red Sox. As with any Red Sox book worth it’s salt, it begins with a brief history of the team itself, exploring the so-called curse, as well as the Yawkey ownership. It follows with a thorough account of the sale of the team to the group eventually led by John Henry. It then hit the big time with a behind the scenes look at the 2003 Red Sox team and front office. With unprecedented access to the front office, Mnookin shows readers what happens before something happens. It’s a hard look at personalities and egos both on the field, and in the offices.

The jacket of the book talks about Mnookin’s access. It brags that he had a key to Fenway Park, and a desk in the front office. The theory being that the kind of access he had must mean that he has the best information. In reality, it means he has the most one-sided information. I’m not saying the Red Sox front office spent time misleading him with false information or opinions. (Although, I wouldn’t put it past them.) But, there are two sides to every story, and Mnookin mostly got one side. The good thing? He told the side he had wonderfully. This is a fantastic book. The section on the sale of the team was especially interesting to me. The back and forth between the team and bidders, and bidders themselves was fascinating. It was also interesting to hear the Red Sox version of many of the personnel issues facing the team. After reading Becoming Manny, the opposite explanation for some of the incidents makes you think. This is certainly a must read for any Red Sox fan.

Rating: 4 bases

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