Butch Stearns has another “done deal” proclamation. He opened the McDonough group by saying his sources in NY say that the labor situation is resolved and just need Selig and Fehr to sign off on it. Jim Thome sure looks good at first for the Sox these days…Seriously though, ESPNNews is reporting that things are just about settled, and that a strike has been all but averted. The Yankees, Rangers and Dodgers are said to be the teams that would be affected by the tax, but may also include the Red Sox. Stearns is joined by Kip Lewis and Rico Petrocelli. Stearns also talked about media guys and some Red Sox players going out after the game for a guys night out.

Art Martone addresses the Grady issue and some of the guys in the lower end of the batting order. Bill Simmons reviews “The Replacements”. Michael Hiestand reports that Fox Sports Net’s new NFL pregame show — on Saturday nights — will include a band, dancers and comedy. Sean McAdam, moonlighting at ESPN.com writes about the borderline apathy in Boston about these Red Sox. Tim Kurkjian writes about the ’95 replacement players. He includes Lou Merloni on his list. Daubach gets a lot of attention in the media about his not being part of the union, somehow Framingham Lou has avoided the attention. Newest Sox Benny Agbayani is also on the list. ESPN the Magazine has its NFL Preview, and the Patriots are predicted for third in the division.