Let’s talk some football to open. First of all, I’d like to announce the launching of a new website, the aim of which is to look at football in a whole new light. There are many statistics in football which can be used in misleading ways. For example, do good teams “establish the run early” as a key to winning the game, or do they get a big lead and then pad their running stats while sitting on the lead? Did Lawyer Milloy really do nothing all year last season as Jim Donaldson said in a recent column? The traditional stats might say one thing, while a better analysis might show something else. While there are many new statistical ways of looking at football on the site, it’s not all about the stats. There will be articles on various topics, hopefully presented with a bit of wit. There is also a blog to highlight the top football articles from around the country. The site will be useful to the fantasy football owner as well as to the casual and serious fan. The site is named Football Outsiders and the address of the site is http://www.footballoutsiders.com/. You might be interested in checking out the AFC East Preview, which is up, and will give you some insight you’re not likely to see elsewhere. I have a very small role on the site, mainly finding articles from the AFC and NFC East to post in the blog. It should be a fun thing to be a part of though.
Keeping with the football theme, above, I mentioned the theory of establishing the run. Michael Smith writes in the Globe today that the Patriots are committed to playing a physical style of play, establishing the run early in the game. Michael Parente looks at the second week of camp, with things picking up and falling into place. Tom Curran says the additions of Brenden Stai and Larry Centers will add much needed depth to the team roster. Dan Pires says Stai could be a steal, and also reports on a flood at Gillette stadium last Tuesday during the Bon Jovi concert. Rich Thompson has a closer look at Stai. Alan Greenberg looks at another fresh start for Stai, as he’s on his fifth team in five years. Christopher Price says Stai is an offensive lineman-for-hire. Parente notes that Stai knows some of the Patriots, having played with Mike Vrabel and Tedy Bruschi before. Michael Gee’s pay column exhorts fans to forget about the 2001 Patriots and never compare this club or any other club to that team. Thompson’s notebook looks at Belichick getting down to business in the second week of camp. Curran’s notebook has “Assistant pro personnel director Ty Law” speaking on some new additions to the club. Smith’s notebook has Stai ready to jump into the action.
Another Dan Shaughnessy column comes and goes without contrition for his out-of-place comments about David Ortiz before the season. He does dub him the “new Yankee-killer”, but nothing about Dan’s own rude comments. Tony Massarotti says that the Sox may have exchanged roles with the Yankees, and now the Bomber might be the ones looking back over their shoulders. David Heuschkel says John Henry didn’t cry after the Sox beat the Yankees Sunday night, but he did get goosebumps… Steven Krasner says Casey Fossum is in a familiar position, wondering about his future with the trading deadline approaching. Michael Silverman looks at George Steinbrenner’s comments from yesterday and the reaction to them around the Sox. Gordon Edes also looks at Steinbrenner’s comments, and remind us that the Sox have a tough month of August still to play. Stan Grossfeld has the first of a two part feature on the individuals involved in the making of baseballs. Silverman also reports that the Sox don’t have any big trades in the works before the deadline. I would say that even if they did, we wouldn’t know about it, as Theo and his team have done a good job of keeping these things quiet. We had no real notice of the Kim and Sauerbeck trades until they were right upon us. Jon Wallach was feeling pretty good about the Sox after this weekend, but as his Yankee fan friend reminded him, it’s really not over. Bob Halloran says Grady Little won the weekend chess match with Joe Torre. Gerry Callahan’s pay column today says that it is a good thing that Billy Beane backed out of taking over the Red Sox. He would’ve dumped Varitek, announced the club wasn’t going to re-sign Nomar and wouldn’t have gotten along with Lucchino. Callahan says Theo is doing the job and doing it well. Edes’ notebook looks at Casey Fossum spending some time in Pawtucket, and Manny’s hot streak since the All Star break. Silverman’s notebook also looks at Fossum. Krasner’s notebook looks at AL player of the week Manny Ramirez.
Shira Springer reports on a sign and trade deal the Celtics have in the works to bring Jumaine Jones to to the team for J.R. Bremer and Bruno Sundov. Mark Murphy reports on the Celtics giving second round pick Brandon Hunter a two year deal. Murphy also reports on the Jones deal.
Bill Griffith reports on the 8th Big Man Run this past weekend as well as numbers from the weekend and assorted notes, including what’s up at WHDH TV. Jim Baker reported on the Sox/Yankees numbers in his pay column.
NESN has Sox/Rangers at 8:00. TBS has Braves/Astros at 7:30.