If this report is correct, Martha Coakley is toast.
Appearing on WBZ Radio's "Nightside" program, the Democratic Senate candidate described former New York Mayor Rudy Guliani as a New York Yankees fan. Nothing newsworthy about that; Mr. Guliani has been a rabid Yankees supporter since his boyhood in New York.
Then, in the same breath, Coakley also called former major league pitcher Curt Schilling a Yankees fan as well.
For those who haven't watched a major league baseball game in the last 20 years, Curt Schilling is a former pitcher for the Boston Red Sox. And not just any pitcher; in 2004, he led the Red Sox to their first World Series championship since 1918, winning the second game of the fall classic despite an ankle injury that left his sock soaked in blood. It remains one of the gutsiest performances in baseball history.
And for the record, he never played for the Yankees.
If Ms. Coakley was trying to make a joke, it fell flat. New Englanders take baseball very seriously, and they live and die with the Red Sox. For his role in bringing a World Series championship to Boston, Schilling became an icon, ranking with Ted Williams, Yaz, Pudge Fisk, Jim Rice and other greats who have worn a Red Sox uniform.
With tonight's little crack, Coakley again proved that she's an arrogant pol who has nothing in common with her constituents. Insulting a living sports legend in a town like Boston is stupid politics, pure and simple. For a follow-up, perhaps she'd like to take shots at Tom Brady, Larry Bird and Bill Russell.
Making matters worse, Coakley didn't offer her insult on some NPR outlet. WBZ is the most popular news-and-talk outlet in New England, with a 50,000 watt, clear channel signal that blankets the eastern U.S. at night. We're sure that thousands of listeners--and Sox fans--heard Martha Coakley put the final stamp on her failed campaign.
ADDENDUM: Mr. Schilling responds; "I've been called a lot of things...."