Originally posted on Fenway West  |  Last updated 5/10/12

After last season's epic collapse, Josh Beckett became the poster boy for underachieving players who cared more about lounging around eating fried chicken and drinking beer than they did about helping their team win.  While some of that elements of that storyline were partially true, the collapse should not be blamed on Beckett.  It was not until spring training that Beckett finally got around to addressing some of these issues and even then he seemed more concerned with clubhouse snitches than with owning up to some of his failures.  The fans and media wanted a scapegoat for the disastrous end to the season and Beckett was doing his part in playing the villain. 

Jump to the 2012 season and the Red Sox are continuing to struggle.  Everyone is trying to find someone to blame for the 12-19 start and fingers have been pointed at Bobby V., the bullpen, Adrian Gonzalez, Buchholz and now Beckett.  By playing golf when he was bumped from a start and not volunteering to pitch in the extra inning loss to the Orioles, Beckett is once again fitting perfectly into the storyline that he does not care enough.  He followed that up with one of the worst starts of his career. 

When asked if he understood why people might question his golf outing, Beckett responded with, "I spend my off days the way I want to spend them."  This was just the answer the media was looking for.  Beckett took the bait and he is playing the villain once again.  Look no further for the scapegoat Red Sox Nation, Josh Beckett is front and center.

Beckett is still answering questions like he did in 2007, but his pitching looks nothing like it did in 2007.  Nobody would have cared if he drank a six pack and played a round of golf in the morning before a start in 2007 as long as he was putting up W's.  Winning gives players all kinds of cover, just ask Manny Ramirez.  When you no longer have the cover of winning you need to chance you approach.  If Beckett tries to maintain his don't F with me attitude with the press he will see as slew of headlines where he is tared and feathered. 

There is blood in the water and the sharks are circling.  Beckett had two ways to get out of the water; one was to pitch well tonight, the other was to show some understanding why some people would think he wasn't being a team player.  He did neither and he will pay a heavy price in the media.

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