Boston fans are not happy with the state of the Red Sox. A few weeks ago, a number of them booed the team’s president, Sam Kennedy, when he announced at an annual event that payroll for the 2024 iteration of the team would be lower than that of last year’s sub-.500 squad. (On-field personnel budgets in Boston have been significantly lower since the season after the team last won the World Series in 2018, and the Sox have finished in last place in the American League East division three of the past four years.)
“I want you to know the boos, the anger, the hate we see on social media — we get it,” said Kennedy, per a Sun Journal report. “It is our job to turn things around to make you proud. There’s only one way to turn the boos into applause. And that’s by winning baseball games.”
For some reason, that’s the atmosphere under which team leadership thought it a good idea to have a camera crew document an entire season of competitive professional baseball.
Forcing the Bears Onto “Hard Knocks” Could Be a Win for HBOThe Broncos and Saints could also be coerced into participating in the series
MLB and the Red Sox announced yesterday that Netflix will produce a documentary series about the team’s 2024 season to air a year from now. According to The Athletic, the project has been in the works for three years, and the streaming giant will also air a documentary film celebrating the 20th anniversary of the 2004 World Champion Red Sox team this year.
There’s a good chance the latter piece of content will be received more favorably by fans than the series about the upcoming season. The team’s front office made no significant player acquisitions during the winter, which is especially notable because the franchise put in place a new chief baseball officer, former pitcher Craig Breslow, in November. So far, he’s failed to put any thumbprint on the franchise, at least in terms of on-the-field considerations. But the players he is putting out there will have off-the-field events involving them closely scrutinized.
“Filming for the yearlong documentary is set to commence in spring training, which begins next week,” wrote The Athletic. “Unlike other sports documentaries such as HBO’s Hard Knocks, it won’t be formatted like a weekly tick-tock of the team’s wins and losses but rather focus on the human interest element of players’ lives.”
Red Sox Chief Marketing Officer Adam Grossman told The Athletic that the team will not receive any compensation from Netflix for taking part in the production. He described the eventual series as “a marketing initiative.” “This is really about getting more people under the tent through telling the stories in a way they’ve never been told before on a really important and growing medium,” Grossman said. “A lot of people, even in the athlete community, don’t fully understand what it’s like to play 162 games, it’s unlike anything in professional sports.”
How many of those 162 games will end up as wins for the Red Sox remains to be seen. PECOTA projects the team to finish last again in 2024, so those behind-the-scenes stories better be good — at least as compelling as those from the championship “Idiots” of 2004.