Since taking over as GM of the Boston Red Sox, Chaim Bloom has been an easy target.
Bloom arrived with a track record of managing low payrolls. He quickly implemented those tactics in Boston, shedding enough salary and talent from the Red Sox to build them into a last-place team. Red Sox fans and media were used to watching the major market baseball team fulfill their championship expectations by spending money. They have experienced a sense of culture shock by the change in philosophy.
Bloom was recently the subject of a feature by the Boston Globe, which writes that the Red Sox GM has received significant abuse. Specifically, death threats and antisemitic abuse from disgraceful fans. In terms of the media criticizing his performance, however, Bloom says some of it’s a sham.
“I’ve also had a lot of people who write and say that stuff on the radio who will privately disavow it and tell me they’re performing, so I don’t take any of it personally,” Bloom told Stan Grossfeld of The Globe. “We sucked, so of course they’re pissed like they should be … When I was a kid [in the Philadelphia suburbs] and things weren’t going right, I booed.”
Sports TV or radio shows and hosts being theatrical and ramping up the drama in an effort to keep their audience’s attention is not exactly breaking news. It takes a unique person to be that excited about every sports topic for hours each day. And Bloom’s brief tenure in Boston has certainly lent itself to exaggerated criticism or showmanship. The Red Sox finished in last place in two of the previous three seasons. Bloom also let two franchise players go in Mookie Betts and Xander Bogaerts.
However, Bloom’s quote about the media is kind of damning about the sports media industry. It’s one thing to be bold and loud on-air for a show. It’s entirely another to blatantly backtrack from what you’re spewing by blaming it on “performative art.”
I don’t know what’s worse: The fact that we can tell when some hosts are being overly dramatic for the show. Or the fact that some of them won’t stand by their takes and content when faced with the people they’re talking about.