CHICAGO -- Buster Olney, a senior writer at ESPN the Magazine who writes a daily baseball blog for ESPN Insider, was here this weekend as part of the Sunday Night Baseball crew. He offers a much darker vision of the Sox clubhouse than has been portrayed elsewhere, though he says the Sox can still be a factor in October.
Here's Olney's take in his Sunday blog (click here for more):
Carl Crawford is working out and is very close to beginning his minor league rehabilitation assignment, Jacoby Ellsbury is making progress and could be back in the lineup in less than a month, and Adrian Gonzalez feels like he's one swing away from putting himself back together at the plate. So anybody who is ready to bury the Boston Red Sox now is out of their mind; they've got some really good players who are going to be augmented by more good players coming back from the disabled list.
But it doesn't take long to ascertain that the Red Sox are a splintered group, with a lot of players and staff unhappy for a lot of different reasons. If they do come back and make the playoffs, it's not going to be because of a united clubhouse. It's toxic -- but that doesn't mean they can't win.
Take a look at Buster's blog post (Insider access required) this morning for more on the Red Sox and their clubhouse issues.