Tag Archives: Heidi Watney

Manager hunt done, John Henry begins trolling Boston bar scene in search of next Heidi Watney

Who says Red Sox owner John Henry isn’t active enough in his team’s affairs?

Several club sources have confirmed that Henry recently took the reins in Fenway Sports Group-owned NESN’s search for a successor to the infinitely popular Heidi Watney, who confirmed last month that she’s moving back to California.

John Henry's eyes are trained on Larry Lucchino. But his mind is ... elsewhere ... (Courtesy of Providence Journal).

“The Red Sox front office has heard all the grumblings from fans that Mr. Henry is diverting too much attention to other business endeavors, such as the soccer team in Liverpool. But that’s simply not the case. John’s instrumental role in the search for new on-field talent for NESN is a perfect example,” said a NESN spokesperson.

While Boston Sports Media Watch ventured a respectable list of possible Watney replacements on Monday, Henry’s tireless pursuit of talent seems to suggest that the potential slate of candidates is quite a bit meatier than just names already known within the television industry.

The affable team owner may have employed a “hands-off” approach to the lengthy search for a new manager, which was reportedly close to completion as of Tuesday morning. However, it would seem that Henry believes he may find a diamond-in-the-rough or at least a girl-next-door who could be molded into on-air talent if afforded with the right opportunity.

And, yes, Henry knows a thing or two about finding broads at watering holes. He met his current wife, Linda Pizzuti, at a bar in the Liberty Hotel and famously won her heart by writing her an endearing letter. Pizzuti is believed to be all-in on Henry’s search for a Fenway star as long as it does not interfere with his exploitation of corn futures.

For their part, fans also seem to be responding positively to the news that their beloved owner is taking such an active interest in the team’s lengthy offseason chore list. In particular, female bar goers in the Boston area seem to welcome the added scrutiny.

“He’s kind of creepy when you first notice him lurking in the corner,” said Worcester product Laura Taylor at M Bar in the Mandarin Hotel during a recent night in which Henry was spotted. “But, yeah, it would be fun to be on television. I may have unbuttoned a couple of buttons once I noticed him in the corner sipping on a dry martini.”

As fans may recall, former Sox GM Theo Epstein once ate Thanksgiving dinner with Curt Schilling’s family. So this isn’t the first time the Red Sox have used the “wine-and/or-dine” tactic to assemble a team. However, it is presumably the first time the team has employed the technique to acquire non-roster talent.

Said one club official: “We can say for certain that this is the first time in this ownership group’s tenure that we’re expressly angling toward a home-grown product.”

Confirmed another team source: “Tina Cervasio and Heidi Watney were carpetbaggers who predictably split town after a few years. We think signing someone local will give us the long-term stability we’re lacking in that part of the organization.”

And, really, what better way to find local talent than to plumb the city’s bustling night clubs and lounges?

Some scouts, however, remain skeptical that the Red Sox will be able to merely plug in a cheap, relatively unknown replacement into such a prominent role as Watney’s.

“Who do they think they’re kidding? On-field interviews and features on ballpark cuisine are high-leverage, pressure-packed situations,” said one long-time scout. “That type of spot requires a certain level of raw talent that simply doesn’t grow on trees. You’re better off paying for a known commodity with the experience and the know-how.”

Nevertheless, the Sox owner is reportedly undeterred. But aspiring on-field journalists beware: John Henry may be able to see you, but you may not be able to see John Henry.

“A lot of it is being done under the cloak of clever disguise…” said one Henry assistant requesting anonymity. “Believe it or not, there are some women out there who get gussied up and show up at ritzy bars simply to meet rich men who can make them feel financially secure. John needs to know that whoever replaces Watney is indeed sincere about the important things – like getting Kevin Youkilis to speak to her after a walkoff, bases-loaded beaning.”

Clubhouse sources would not comment on anyone else’s involvement in the vetting process beyond Henry.

But Sox fans seem to feel strongly that multiple front offices executives would only serve to gum up an already tall task.

“Larry Lucchino better not be holding up the process with whatever weird fetishes he happens to have,” said Nathan Prince after swearing he spied Henry during a recent night at the bar at Bond in the Langham Hotel.

“I mean, let’s be honest. It’s six in one; half a dozen in the other. I trust Mr. Henry’s judgement on this,” said a Sox fan last night at Lolita Tequila Bar. “As long as the new girl can post a lineup on Twitter and stay out of Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s pants, I think Sox fans will be happy.”

Jarrod Saltalamacchia declined comment for this story.

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Local man begins following NESN’s Heidi Watney on Twitter

CARVER, Mass.—Francis Flynn never bothered opening the owner’s manual that came with his new iPhone. As the owner and primary caretaker of nearly 10 acres of cranberry bogs, Flynn says he doesn’t have the time to learn too many of the smart phone’s bells and whistles.

Just having access to the inner thoughts of his favorite NESN television personality, Heidi Watney, is plenty stimulation enough for Flynn, who let his beard grow scraggly thick during a particularly desolate, snowy winter that left his fields in a depressing, dire condition.

“I stumbled on Heidi’s Twitter account one day while I was trying to order a couple of replacement parts for my tractor—it took a pretty good beating during all the storms in January,” Flynn explains.

“I was on the phone with the supplier and all of a sudden I heard a strange ping noise and there was a message congratulating me on setting up an account. Turns out I had accidentally tapped some shortcut button while I was trying to talk and wipe fresh bog soil off my nose at the same time. I’m still waiting for that fuel hose for my engine…But obviously God planned for my tractor to stall out so that I’d find Heidi on Twitter.”

And so it began for Flynn (or @2y4hr?h0ijh$F, as he is known on Twitter).

Up to this point, NESN’s Number One Blond Bombshell—(“You better get off my goddamned bog if you think Kathryn Tappen is better,” Flynn says, unsolicited)—has primarily used her account to notify fans of daily lineups, to relay tidbits picked up in her interviews and to wish her many followers ‘Happy Birthday.’

But Flynn believes @HeidiWatney will evolve into so much more and he intends “to be there when she slips up and posts some kind of inappropriate photo of herself in front of her bathroom mirror or something.”

In the meantime, Flynn says knowing the Red Sox batting order in advance of the game broadcast—well before he’s even close to done for the day working in his bog—is a pretty nice perk.

“Heidi has the lineup posted a few hours before the first pitch,” Flynn says. “I’m out there in my tractor around quarter of four already asking myself if Francona’s doing the right thing hitting Jarrod Saltalamacchia fourth. I love it.”

Flynn, who has experienced his fair share of Heidi obsession and fatigue over the years, is downright giddy at the prospect of being connected to her 24 hours a day throughout the upcoming regular season.

However, he has taken note of some significant drawbacks.

“Certain news, I’d rather hear straight from Heidi’s face on a television screen,” he says.

Flynn was devastated when he heard news of Daniel Nava’s demotion to the minors while trying to call the Plymouth County Animal Control office to report a dead coyote that was rotting in one of the far reaches of his bog.

“It was really tough to have to hear about Danny that way…on a damn phone. I knew it was coming, but I really thought Heidi and I would share that moment together on TV…not on some social networking site. It felt so impersonal.”

Asked if he planned to follow Red Sox stars such as Jacoby Ellsbury and Saltalamacchia, who also recently joined Twitter, Flynn didn’t have to think long for his reply.

“Ballplayers never say anything interesting…unless they’re talking to Heidi.”

Clay Buchholz’s Love Doctor Mailbag: Red Hot Summer Edition

Red Sox pitcher Clay Buchholz is on a roll thus far in 2010. He’s 10-4 with a sub-3.00 ERA and appears to be putting together an All-Star-caliber season. Using his instinctive guile, Clay is tearing through batting orders the same way he used to plow through women before marrying model Lindsay Clubine last fall. Even amidst preparations for the birth of his firstborn child, Buchholz found some time to impart some of his pimping wisdom to his faithful fans at Fenway Pastoral.


Clay, what’s the deal with NESN Sportsdesk anchor Jade McCarthy’s mole located above her top lip? At times, I’m able to rationalize it as a Cindy Crawford-esque beauty mark, but just as often it just seems like a regrettably-placed distraction. Help?

– Andrew from Plymouth

I’m not a big fan of facial blemishes, Andrew. Whenever I turn on NESN and Jade and Her Mole are on the screen, I imagine that she is wearing one of those sexy silver stud rings some girls have pierced onto their faces. Usually, when you see a chick who has a weird piercing like that on her lip or nose or (obviously) her tongue, it means she’s gonna be pretty wild when you get down to rolling around in the hay with her.

Clay, you managed to impregnate your wife within a couple months or so of marriage. But Sox owner John Henry was married to his wife/muse for nearly a year before he was able to slip one past the goalie. What gives?

– Lynn from Chatham

Well, Lynn, I can’t say for sure, but it’s probably all the energy drinks and protein shakes. Also, there are certain positions that I like my partner to be able to contort herself into that are more conducive to getting a broad pregnant. Honestly, Mr. Henry is kinda old, so I hope he didn’t try any of my moves.


Clay, I’m 17 years old and pretty new to the … “dating” scene. Whenever I’m in the throes of the moment in the bedroom, I find it useful to think about baseball when delaying arrival at the finish line. This method must not work for you since you’re probably always thinking baseball all the time anyway, right?

– Brett from Lexington

Brett, I spend six-plus months in a major league locker room. I see a lot of dudes parading around in towels on a daily basis and they’re not all svelte guys in their primes. I’ve got plenty of ammunition to slow down the clock if I really need it. But in all honesty, dude, why are you trying to delay the inevitable? You’re young. Relax and let the game come to you. You can’t move onto the next batter until you’ve gotten the one at the plate out. Also, throwing a few side sessions in the “bullpen” in between starts might help a young player like yourself find the proper rhythm.

What, exactly, did Jason Varitek get himself into with Heidi Watney? The guy romances her a few times and the next thing he knows, the chick is scurrying over to him every time she needs a player to toss her a bone with some throwaway quote on camera.
– Jeff from Manchester

All I can say about that situation is I feel bad for poor ‘Tek. Generally speaking, a man should always make it clear to a female from the get-go whether he sees her as a full-time starter or just a situational reliever.

Clay, I was at a gentleman’s club in Austin last week getting a lap dance when I noticed that the woman taking care of me had a small tattoo of the New York Yankees logo just to the left of her landing strip. I, uh, immediately wilted like A-Rod in October and actually cut the dance short before the end of the 20 minutes I’d paid for. What’s the etiquette in that situation? I already paid for about twice the amount of time she was with me, but she seemed peeved I didn’t give her a tip on top of my wasted up-front fee.

– Gerald from Bangor

You did the right thing cutting the dance short, Gerald. But really, it sounds like your laziness lead to some buyer’s remorse. You should always make sure you get a good overview of the lady offering you a private dance before shelling out any dough. Next time, have the dame do a few twirls in front of you to get a better idea what you’re getting into. It’s OK to say no and if any other strippers are around, they’ll appreciate your discerning tastes.

Click here to read the Valentine’s Day edition of the Love Doctor Mailbag

Click here to read last October’s edition of the Love Doctor Mailbag

Lingering Concerns After 47 Games

About 29% of the season is over, which means it is time to start asking some tough questions.

Are we still pretending Heidi Watney missed the first four weeks of the season with a concussion? Lies were told and no one seems all too anxious to flesh out the truth. The whole concussion story never made much sense and people were crying BS from the get-go. Watney isn’t an NFL quarterback. Even if she was, she wouldn’t have missed four weeks of the season with a head injury sustained in some kickboxing class at the local gym. NESN could have cut most of the speculation/dick jokes off at the root by just explaining what exactly, you know, concussed her. All they had to do was make up some story. Instead, they gave an alibi that was intriguing enough to make us want to know more.

When will it be enjoyable to cheer for John Lackey? He looks like Sloth from The Goonies, he is inexplicably married to a hot blond woman and his fastball consistently sits at an underwhelming 90-91 MPH. He doesn’t seem like a bad guy, but sometime over the next year or two, he’ll need a J.D. Drew 2007 ALCS grand slam moment™ to defibrillate his big-contract status on the team. In reality, that moment can’t happen before autumn. Until then, Lackey’s starts are the anti-Pedro starts: can-miss games in which fans can feel free to turn on the game around the sixth or seventh inning as Manny Delcarmen warms in the pen.

Does anyone actually read articles like Peter Abraham’s effort in Wednesday’s Boston Globe headlined Rays refuse to hit panic button? Apparently, when beat writers aren’t trying to dig up quotes from the Red Sox about whether the season is over in May, they try to incite Boston’s opponents to admit bleakness. Perhaps this approach is some backward notion of impartiality. Rather than reporting on a non-story, maybe these reporters should work on writing apologies for attempting to portray the season as a lost cause before the team finished a quarter of its schedule.

Is Joe Nelson going to bother explaining his choice for Fenway entry music, Miley Cyrus’ “Party in the USA”? Is it a joke? Payoff for a lost bet? Ritual hazing? Was Daisuke Matsuzaka upset he didn’t think of it first? Talk, Joe. Fans deserve to know.

A Few Things about the Jordan’s Furniture Monster (Hit) Scam

The sign in center field is just above bleacher section 40, just waiting to be peppered with tape-measure home runs as part of the Jordan’s Furniture Monster Hit promotion.

So any home run that hits that sign during a game means free furniture for anyone who made a purchase before the deadline?

Well, no. Not every home run is eligible—just those hit by Red Sox players…after July 15.

OK, that’s fine—nobody wants free furniture because Ramon Ramirez threw a flat fastball to Carlos Pena. The Red Sox have actually shown a decent amount of power thus far in 2010. And the ball carries well to center during the summer at Fenway. Home runs occasionally glance off the back wall behind section 40 from time to time. And that’s right where the sign is located. There’s a chance!!

Just a second there, Lloyd Christmas. The free furniture thing is limited to homers that hit the small baseball printed on the left-hand side of the sign…(The fine print: The hit will not be considered “direct” if it caroms off another object or is touched by a fan before hitting the baseball on sign.)

Oh.

Based on available data from Hit Tracker Online, 186 home runs were hit at Fenway Park in 2009 (about 2.30 per game). One of those homers landed in the vicinity of the Monster Hit sign. In 2008, two home runs out of 147 would have had Jordan’s insurers holding their breath. In 2007: three of 148. In 2006: three of 156.

Some of these home runs probably wouldn’t have even appeared as close as Hit Tracker’s scatter plots suggest. Nevertheless, in the most charitable scenario, there is a 1-2% possibility that any given home run has a chance of making a dent somewhere on the sign based on data from the last four years (9 dongs out of a total of 637 hit). But the actual area taken up by the baseball itself is probably something like 5% of the total sign’s space. So in reality, the promotion is akin to a blindfolded shot from half court at a Celtics game where just hitting the backboard would be an impressive accomplishment.

But the trouble isn’t solely that the probability of a “Monster Hit” begins with a decimal point followed by a bunch of zeroes. It could happen. The more glaring reality is that Jordan’s is preying on the dumbest subset of fans by enticing them to bet on the likelihood of a player hitting a specific spot on a sign over 430 feet from home plate at Fenway Park. The possible reward should be more interesting than free second-rate furniture.

So what would be a better reward for customers who buy furniture at Jordan’s based on the possibility that it will be free if someone hits the target?

It has to be something equally as far-fetched. It should be interesting and rewarding for everyone involved. Not just for those who purchased sofas and loveseats. It should universally atone for all the aggravation the company will put NESN viewers through with its incessant advertising spots. It should offset the mental pressure it puts on David Ortiz—Does the slugger’s homerless psyche really need to have a tiny home run target as a backdrop in center field?

It should also punish Jordan’s Furniture for being unoriginal. This promotion is a watered-down version of MasterCard’s long-running sponsorship of targets at the MLB All-Star Game home-run derby event.

At the very least, that guy in their ads should have to cut off his ponytail so that Jade McCarthy and Heidi Watney can use it as a French tickler while enthusiastically hooking up on a memory foam mattress while Don Orsillo and Jerry Remy provide a play-by-play analysis on live television.

Release of Heidi Watney peephole video stalled by post-production hurdles

BOSTON–In an attempt to combat newly hired on-air talent and possibly parlay her local fame into a more fulfilling national gig, NESN on-field reporter Heidi Watney hopes to soon release a professionally produced voyeur-style video clip of herself undressing in a hotel room. Filming concluded several weeks ago and the video could make quite a media splash if, as planned, it is released just before the Red Sox begin playoff action early next month.

However, after hundreds of hours of excruciating post-production work, the timeline for the release of the viral video on the Interweb is in jeopardy due to a dispute between Watney and the film’s contracted distributor, Mortimer VonHoffstreuzen, say several members of the film’s production staff.

The major point of contention is VonHoffstreuzen’s insistence that Web sites hosting the four-minute video clip be required to pay a $10,000 fee for the rights to stream the file.

Watney believes that viewers should be able to access the file for free–especially because it was deliberately filmed with a low-quality web-cam in order to give the impression that it was made surreptitiously.

“Heidi is right,” says an industry analyst. “It’s folly to expect people would be willing to pay to watch this video when better-quality videos can be found everyday in every corner of the Internet absolutely free of charge. Viewers will simply go elsewhere to watch women undress, which would make it hard for any Web site to justify buying rights to this relatively soft-core entertainment.”

VonHoffstreuzen’s counterpoint is that Watney’s celebrity status makes the video premium, elite content that should merit payment for full access.

“This isn’t just any blond woman taking her clothes off,” says the distributor. “This is someone who is on the television, on the radio and who even writes her own blog for NESN.com. She is a star and it is insulting to compare her work in my film to that of any filthy skank with a web-cam.”

With NESN’s recent hiring of Newton native Jade McCarthy, an anchor/reporter cut very much from the same cloth as other female talent appearing on the station (Watney, Kathryn Tappen), Watney is said to be increasingly worried about the possibility that her colleagues may divert attention from her work.

“NESN is accumulating voluptuous blond bombshells faster than Clay Buchholz tears through trashy playmate girlfriends,” says someone close to Watney’s camp. “Competition for viewer affection could get pretty ugly once this new girl starts in January.”

Indeed, McCarthy won two Emmys last year for her sports coverage for NBC’s Philadelphia affiliate. The achievements could overshadow Watney’s work unless the incumbent on-field reporter manages to make a splash of her own.

A member of the film crew told Fenway Pastoral, “From a creative standpoint, I’m still trying to figure out how Heidi distinguishes herself from the millions of other clips that are posted on the Internet every day. I’m sure there’s a following for her work that will help sell the product if the film distributor has his way…But there’s a huge risk that people will feel alienated if it isn’t free.”

Francis Flynn, once believed to be Watney’s most devoted fan, was noncommital when asked if he would pay to watch a peephole video starring the NESN reporter.

Reached via CB radio while harvesting his cranberry bog in Carver, Flynn reasoned, “I already have hundreds of pictures of nude models in various poses with Heidi’s face photoshopped over the originals. For me, it seems like I’d be paying for recycled, repackaged content. Maybe they should come up with a better business plan.”

Local man is bored with Heidi Watney

CARVER, Mass.–Heavy rains recently transformed the rectangular plots of Francis Flynn’s cranberry bogs into dark, murky pools of standing water. The cloud cover above is so heavy that Flynn is forced to use a flashlight in mid-afternoon as he checks the engine of one of his tractors–one of several with a hanging Red Sox logo painted onto the front end. There is not much the cranberry harvester can do on rainy days aside from taking refuge in the dryness of his storage shed.
 
With summer’s dog days on the nearby horizon, the rainfall keeps his bogs nourished and healthy. The Red Sox are in first place and it should be a good year for cranberries. Yet Flynn still sighs as he organizes his shed’s tool rack.
 
“I wish I knew what was going on with Heidi. I’m bored with her,” Flynn says, shaking his head. “Last year, every time she was on camera felt like some momentous event. Lately, though? I’ve got to admit she hasn’t been doing it for me.”
 
After expressing strong hopesfor Watney’s sophomore season as NESN’s on-field personality in March, Flynn’s feelings toward the blond-haired reporter have cooled considerably.
 
“Yeah, of course I still think she’s attractive. It’s just seeing her two or three times a game? Every night, all summer long? I never thought I’d say this, but I’m looking forward to the All-Star Break next week. Will Erin Andrews be covering the Home Run Derby for ESPN again?”
 
Flynn is unable to pinpoint exactly what spawned his boredom, but offers some hard criticism of Watney’s wardrobe choices thus far in 2009.
 
“She’s wearing scarves and long sleeves on 70-degree days at the ballpark. That’s just plain wrong,” he said. “And there’s that one blue shirt that she wears about once or twice a week. I wish NESN had a rule where once Heidi wears something on air, it gets thrown away after the broadcast.”
 
Watney’s unchanging hair styling has also miffed Flynn over the first half of the 2009 season.
 
“She wears it the same way every night. I say curl it or put it in a ponytail or braid it or just do something different with it. She’s so stubborn. You know what it reminds me of? Papelbon’s insistence on throwing sliders lately. Maybe both of them have lost something off their fastballs…” 
 
Flynn measures his response carefully when asked if he would prefer Watney be replaced or temporarily spelled by colleague Kathryn Tappen.
 
“It’s not that I don’t think she can do it…I think she’s done a good job working the Bruins games and all that,” he says. “But it just seems like she’s a poor man’s Heidi. If I’m sick of Heidi, what’s Kathryn Tappen going to add at this point?”
 
The possibility of teaming both of them together briefly intrigues the pensive Flynn.
 
“You know, maybe. Heidi’s in a rut. The Sox’ bats are in a rut…It’s drastic, but maybe that’s what we need,” Flynn says. “A shake up of the lineup, so to speak.”
 
Still, the cranberry bogger hints at a clear departure from the ethnic diversity NESN once boasted. The Filipino-born and Canadian-reared Hazel Mae, former SportsDesk anchor, left the station last year and has since landed a gig with MLB Network.
 
“After Hazel left, they basically replaced her with some white guy who gives in-game updates,” laments Flynn. “I think I was less upset when Theo tried to replace Pedro Martinez with Matt Clement. You mean to tell me there haven’t been any other female Asian or Spanish television reporters looking for a job over the last year?”
 
A thunder shower moves through the area and drizzle gives way to a steady downpour. Flynn puts on his red rain jacket and fastens its hood around his head as he exits his tool shed. As the rain becomes heavier, Flynn realizes he has left the window to his tractor open and the driver’s side has become flooded with incoming rainwater. Cursing like a longshoreman, he angrily slams the door after rolling up the window.
 
“I hate to say it,” Flynn says as he peers up at the sky, “But I think Heidi’s time may be up.”