Former Mets general manager and current SiriusXM sports radio host Steve Phillips joined Mut & Merloni (with Kirk Minihane in for Lou Merloni) on Friday to talk about Bobby Valentine, the World Series and performance-enhancing drugs.
Valentine broke his silence following his firing when he appeared on Bob Costas' NBC Sports Network show on Tuesday night, and he made some negative comments about his time in Boston.
“I’m not surprised,” Phillips said. “Having been fired, you get defensive. When Bobby was fired in New York, he had cultivated relationships with members of the media who were able to do his bidding. … He didn’t have the time or the relationships to develop that sort of collateral with the media in Boston, so he’s doing some of that on his own. It’s a natural tendency to defend yourself when you feel like you’ve been wronged.”
Valentine, in the interview, cast doubt on a story he had told WEEI concerning a sarcastic comment to rookie Will Middlebrooks. Phillips said he thinks Valentine could be making things up based on his own perception.
“The answer to that is probably, yes,” Phillips said. “I can’t recall a specific item [in which Valentine made things up]. What happens is, we make up our own reality. What we understand took place may not necessarily be what actually did take place. … I think with Bobby, he does experience things differently. Certainly did to me. I think he does that more than most other people. And I think some of what you’re hearing right now is exactly his reality, which is different than others.”
Asked if Valentine got a fair shake in Boston, Phillips said: “What’s fair? I think that the [Kevin] Youkilis situation blew up on Bobby. It was difficult for him after that to overcome. … They wanted him to be a changer … and in doing that it was going to rub some people the wrong way.”
Phillips said if he were a general manager again he would consider hiring Valentine, just not immediately.
“I would consider Bobby to manage again, probably not this year.” Phillips said. “I think the dust needs to settle. … I think that as time goes by we start to better understand who is responsible for what and stuff that we attach to somebody that might not have been their stuff. The facts become little bit clearer, so I think somewhere down the line I would consider Bobby to manage. I think he’s a brilliant baseball man. I think it has to be the right situation.”
Following are more highlights from the interview.
On new Sox manager John Farrell: “I’ve crossed paths with him both from a front office perspective and when he was Red Sox pitching coach. … I know he is very well-respected, a very mature baseball guy. I followed some games up in Toronto with him when they were decimated by injuries, so the one thing I’ll say is that with all the injuries the Red Sox had, you’ve got a manager coming in who at least have knows how to handle some of that situation because he dealt with that himself this past year. … Where he’ll have an impact is that he’s not Bobby Valentine. And I say that with respect to Bobby, but he’s more like Terry Francona and he will be much more readily accepted and won’t have to start from scratch earning the respect of the players, of the fans, of the front office, and of everybody else.”
On the Giants taking a 2-0 lead over the Tigers in the World Series: “I had Tigers in 6. So, I think the Tigers have got them right where they want them right now. Hasn’t gone quite how I thought it would’ve. [Justin] Verlander would’ve won Game 1 and maybe even split the series in San Francisco. That being said, I do think that the Tigers are not out of this series. So many people are discounting them right now. They’re going back to Detroit with a fan base that is really behind their team; they play really well there. … I think they can bounce back in this series, it’s not going to be easy. This is a Giants team that is playing inspired baseball, to say the least. Overcoming six elimination games is nothing to laugh at. … I believe the Tigers will find a way to bounce back.”
On the Giants not being punished as a team for having a player, Melky Cabrera, test positive for PEDs: “There’s nothing that’s taken into account with the fact that the team that you’re playing on gets a dramatic benefit in your performance from the fact that you were cheating. ... He was the centerpiece of their offense. So from my perspective to say let’s dock him 50 games but not in any way acknowledge the fact that the San Francisco Giants benefited from his performance, I don’t know what that exact number is. I personally believe that it could be anywhere from eight to 10 games, that if they had some other guy there or if it was the Melky Cabrera who was a Yankee and Brave who was like a .265 hitter with eight home runs on the season, knocked in 48 and scored 50, if that were the guy then they would be eight to 10 games less than what they were. But he was their best offensive player.”
Glenn Ordway and Fred Smerlas talk with Cornerback Malcolm Butler in the lockerroom after the Patriots handily beat the Pittsburgh to advance to Super Bowl 51.
Fauria calls the boys to give his take on the game today and why he sees a Patriots victory on the horizon - although he says he's getting more and more nervous as kickoff approaches. He gets into the match-ups, "fire alarm-gate", how the Steelers D will approach the Pats - zone or man, and more.
The boys chat about the importance of the versatility of Dont'a Hightower and his impact on the Pats D throughout his career but especially this season.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ben Kichen of the 'Dale and Holley Show' talk about Isaiah Thomas' flagrant foul against the Heat, and also discuss why it's time for the Celtics to address their biggest need.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ben Kichen of the "Dale and Holley Show" discuss the latest news on the injury that has kept Isaiah Thomas off the court and how valuable it is for Marcus Smart to stay in control.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ben Kichen of 'The Dale and Holley Show' talk about last night's disappointing finish against the Rockets and they talk about their love for DeMarcus Cousins.
Mut, Rob, and John are talking about some of the Hall of Fame candidates who gained or lost support within the last year. Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds both gained support, while Curt Schilling lost a chunk of votes he had gotten last year.
Mut, Bradford, and Tomase are in after it was announced that Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, and Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. They also talk about some notable candidates who weren't elected this year like Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds.
Rob Bradford is joined by Jackie Bradley Jr. to discuss race in baseball and in Boston, along with the importance of Martin Luther King Day. The Red Sox outfielder also dives into how he never really felt comfortable in a major league clubhouse until last year, the approach he's taking heading into 2017, and why he's not playing in the World Baseball Classic.
Guys discuss if or when the Bruins will fire Coach Julian
Ken, Rear and Ty get into a very solid week for the B's beating St Louis and the Flyers and losing a hard-fought game against the Predators. Is this team turning things around? Krug and Marchand are kicking things up a notch. The guys also talk about Claude and Sweeney's job security before getting into some big hits around the league this week.
Ken, Rear and Ty talk all things Bruins as they come off a 4-0 shutout win in Florida and head to Carolina later today. Did that victory save Claude's job? The boys get into Don Sweeney's recent comments on Claude's job and what the future holds for the black and gold.
Hour 4. Kirk and Gerry discuss how players from bad teams can come to New England and win.
Hour 2. Albert challenges Kirk and Gerry. Headlines with Kirk covers the Women's March.
Tim Hasselbeck joins the show.
Old Friend Tim Benz joins OMF, and while they regale tales of dysfunction, Benz manages to predict that the Patriots will win Sunday.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian enjoy the festivities ahead of the Inauguration, and give their predictions for Patriots-Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian love how Bill Belichick reacts to the plethora of stupid questions he receives from the Media during his Press Conferences.
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe spend the day discussing the AFC Championship.
We close out the work week with the best sound clips of the day.
We check in with hall of famer Michael Irvin to find out what happened to his Dallas Cowboys and look at the remaining playoff match-ups.
Kirk Minihane brings Chad Finn back to the show to talk about the Charlotte Wilder story about the relationship between the Pats and Trump. Chad defends Charlotte for some of the story and her previous articles, Kirk still has problems with what he thinks is lazy reporting. Kirk and Chad also talk about whether a third sports station in Boston would be viable and if Curt Schilling will ever make it into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Kirk Minihane has a loud and very confrontational argument with media personality John Ziegler about the guilt or innocence of Jerry Sandusky. Kirk believes him to be guilty, John believes beyond a shadow of a doubt that Sandusky is innocent. Yes, it may be an old case, but you all remember it and this episode may change your mind about some of the things you previously thought with regards to Penn State, Jerry Sandusky, and Joe Paterno.
Kirk Minihane wants to sit down with both sports editors at the major newspapers in Boston. Only Boston Herald sports editor Sean Leahy took Kirk up on the invitation to join the show. What you will hear is a great conversation between two people who are very interested in the newspaper business and how that business has changed over the years and what the future holds for newspapers. Kirk and Sean talk about the ongoing and longstanding rivalry between the Herald and Globe.
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis recap a Patriots Monday after a Patriots AFC Title game win and a Tom Brady appearance with Kirk & Gerry.
Uncle Buck, George from S**t Pats Fans Say, and Jerry Thornton talk about the Patriots history in the AFC Championship game, the big wins, the bad losses, and what it will take for the Pats to win another AFC Championship game.
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis wrap up the K&C week after a Friday show with Kirk, Mut and Ben Volin in studio.
Tom Brady joins the show the morning after winning the AFC championship for the seventh time. Brady talks about the upcoming Super Bowl and his call to President Donald Trump.More from this show
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe spend the day discussing the AFC Championship.More from this show
Hour 4. Bill Belichick holds his Friday press conference while Mut and Kirk try and play a game. Mut has a big announcement. Gerry calls in from the Inauguration on his crystal-clear cell phone.More from this show
Hour 1. The Patriots are going to the Super Bowl, which means Kirk and Gerry are going to Houston. Tom Brady joins the show.More from this show
Pete goes on an impassioned rant about the Boston Bruins management and ownership amid rumors that the team would be announcing the firing of Claude Julien in coming days.More from this show