Andy Pettitte…the pitcher I fear most going against the Sox each time…did it again yesterday, shutting down their white hot slugging bats. Jeff Horrigan gives Pettitte his due. Bob Hohler points to John Burkett and David Ortiz, both of whom were among the particular Sox bested by Pettitte yesterday. Sean McAdam says the odds favored the Sox coming down to earth at some point. Jack O’Connell looks at Pettitte doing what was expected of him. Don Amore says the Yankees just had enough of being battered by the Sox. Bob Ryan looks at Pettitte’s Harry Trumanesque career, which has inspired a lot of faith from his manager. Steve Buckley looks at more first inning troubles for Burkett. Steven Krasner says the bigger the stage, the better Andy Pettitte is. Mike Shalin looks at Byung-Hyun Kim, who has not been fazed by the razzing he’s received from the Yankees fans. Alex Speier looks at Gabe Kapler, answering questions that have become commonplace to him. Dan Shaughnessy says despite yesterday, it’s still been a great holiday weekend for Sox fans, he can’t be all positive though, as evidenced:
But then you worry. Yankees fans remind you that the Red Sox have been trying to bash their way to a world championship for 84 years without success. What's your answer to that? You know that if the Yanks beat Pedro today, your Sox are four games behind again, back where they started before those home run festivals Friday and Saturday.
I’m still waiting for the retraction column, or even an apology from Shaughnessy to David Ortiz after calling him “a huge sack of you-know-what” numerous times on-air before the season. That was above and beyond the usual Shaughnessy attacks. Aaron Harlan looks at the Yankee debut of Curtis Pride. All Star selections…and snubs…are a hot topic today. Gordon Edes looks at the effect on the Red Sox. Shalin also gets All Star reaction in the Sox locker room. McAdam notes that Sox are a little miffed to only have two representatives on the AL squad. Manny likes the idea of building a legacy for his children to see. Krasner looks at how RI’s Rocco Baldelli didn’t make the squad either. Buckley’s pay column says that Varitek’s omission just shows that the whole voting process is a joke, even the players can’t get it right, instead voting for Ramon Hernandez over Varitek. Howard Bryant has a pair of pay columns, in the first, he says the Sox need to make a statement today, or else it’s just like always, they won’t have shown they can beat the Yankees when it absolutely counts. In his Boston Uncommon column, Bryant touches on topics such as closer by committee (don’t call it dead yet), the “disabled lists” vs the “injured list”, “October Men”, By Roger Kahn, and how technology has ruined the All Star game. Hohler’s notebook looks at today’s pitching matchup, and has some Sox still chirping at Clemens. Horrigan’s notebook has David Ortiz not backing down from subtle threats from the Rocket. Krasner’s notebook looks at more first inning woes for Burkett. David Heuschkel’s notebook looks at Kim and Millar enduring taunts at Yankee Stadium.
A couple of coverage notes from the weekend. WBZ’s coverage of the July 4th game included some hilarious seventh inning banter from McDonough and Remy. Bill Meuller’s second home run of the day ended up near several, shall we say large, Yankee fans. The Sox broadcasters then launched into a series of doubletalk that had me rolling. McDonough started it while the camera was still on the people, by simply saying “Wow’ and pausing. He then added something along the lines of “Some big, BIG…blasts by the Red Sox today…”, Remy could be heard to stifle a laugh in the background and then sputtered, “yes, very large”. McDonough also mentioned about the Red Sox “feasting” on the Yankees.
In the Fox broadcast of Sunday’s game, Tim McCarver launched into an ignorant, clueless rant about Bill James and how James doesn’t feel a team needs a stopper in the bullpen. He went on and on, naming all the stoppers on the good teams, and became very sarcastic and even nasty towards what he perceived James’ theories were. It became obvious that McCarver has not read anything that James has written, and was just spouting off something he had likely picked up from someone else. James of course, does not object to having a stopper in the pen…in fact he encourages it. How James differs from traditional baseball thinking is “when” the stopper is used. He suggests using it at the key juncture of the game, be it the seventh inning or the ninth, rather than just trotting the guy out at the very end of the game.
Celtics first round pick Marcus Banks is expected to sign with the team today, reported the Las Vegas Review Journal on Saturday. I waited for this to get picked up by a writer around here the last couple days, and it has not been, as of yet. Yesterday, the Lawrence Eagle Tribune had a point-counterpoint as to whether the Celtics should be trying to trade Antoine Walker. David Willis says yes, Phil DiPirro says no.
Yesterday, Mike Reiss looked at the tough negotiations and decisions the Patriots will have to make on Ty Law and Lawyer Milloy after next season.
NESN has Sox/Yankees at 1:00. ESPN has Braves/Mets at 7:00. ESPN Classic has game 1 of the 1999 ALCS between the Red Sox and Yankees at 9:00.