Pokey Fever Grips Hub

The Red Sox scored a prime time 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers last night thanks in great part to a terrific pitching effort by Pedro Martinez, and more spectacular play in the field by Pokey Reese, who also drove in two of the runs for the hometown nine. Pokey’s defensive efforts, especially a leaping snare of a rising liner in the seventh were the talk of the game afterwards. Nick Cafardo’s game story looks at the fans demanding a curtain call from Pokey after that play. Jeff Goldberg looks at Pokey contributing to the win with both his glove and bat. David Borges notes that Pokey has further solidified his spot as a fan favorite in Boston. Tony Massarotti and Sean McAdam focus their game stories on the performance of Pedro, whose strong outing became all the more important with the uncertain status of Curt Schilling’s ankle injury.

Speaking of Pedro, yesterday John Tomase had an extensive piece in which he puts forth the notion that Pedro actually suffered a partially torn labrum back in 2001, in addition to the frayed rotator cuff. More serious labrum injuries usually spell the end of a career for a pitcher. New information that I haven’t seen elsewhere. In the completely opposite vein, Dan Shaughnessy tells us that, hey, did you know that Pedro used to pitch for the Dodgers? And that the gave up on him because they didn’t think he could be a starter? And that he holds a grudge against Tommy Lasorda? Fascinating stuff, all revealed for the first time. Really, not a horrid article by Shaughnessy, (I could’ve done without the game 7 reference) but absolutely nothing new, either. Mike Shalin has Dodger’s manager Jim Tracey, who was a bench coach in Montreal when Pedro won the Cy Young there, speaking about the effort and changes he’s seen in Pedro. Alex Speier also looks at Pedro facing the Dodgers.

Score one for the media. At least in part due to the whining of Tony Massarotti and other media members, Curt Schilling has decided to stop, or at least cut back severely on his on-line posting and chatting with Sox fans over at the Sons of Sam Horn. Schilling made that announcement over the weekend, and named Massarotti as a media person he has issues with. He’s gotten tired of the “small jabs” taken at him by Tony Mazz, and brought up the time that Massarotti said that if Schilling didn’t want to talk to the media, then they (he) wouldn’t promote Schilling’s charitable efforts. Way to go Tony, ruin the fun and enjoyment for a group of fans just because of your own insecurities.

Rob Bradford has a look at the glove magic of Pokey. Rich Thompson has a look at David McCarty hoping for a chance to get some pitching in. Michael Gee (subscription only) says that Schilling needs to take some time to heal now, and be healthy for later in the season. Joe McDonald reports that Trot Nixon will be traveling with the Sox out to Colorado, and should be activated in the middle of the week sometime. Local guy Jeff Goodman has an article on Nomar for the Washington Post (free subscription required) Framingham’s own Lou Merloni is quoted in the piece, and gives some insight into Nomar’s feelings about the offseason:

"It really hit home when he found out the deal was on the table," said Cleveland Indians first baseman Lou Merloni, a close friend of Garciaparra's since their days as minor leaguers. "They were trying to exhaust everything to get rid of him or get A-Rod, however you want to look at it. He didn't understand why they didn't want him after everything he'd done for the organization. He basically resigned himself to the fact that his career in Boston was over."

That’s not really new information, but I’m not sure if I’ve seen something like that from someone who really is close to Nomar and not named Uncle Victor. Marvin Pave has another look at Pokey’s amazing catch. Shalin reports that Glenn Hoffman has no hard feelings at being passed over for the managerial job of the Red Sox. Thompson also has a look at a good outing from the Sox bullpen last night in relief of Pedro. Cafardo’s notebook has Nixon aiming for a Wednesday return. Goldberg’s notebook, Massarotti’s notebook and Borges’ notebook all look at the imminent return of Trot as well. The ProJo notebook says one of either Anastacio Martinez or Mark Malaska will likely be sent down when Nixon is activated.

Michael Felger, Christopher Price and Adam Kilgore have a look at the Patriots new Super Bowl rings, the largest in league history. In looking back at the just concluded mini-camp, Dan Pires has some serious issues with Ty Law.

Peter May and Steve Bulpett look at the Pistons pushing the Lakers to the brink of elimination. Bulpett’s notebook looks at how Danny Ainge helped the Pistons get to this point. May’s notebook looks at Chucky Atkins feeling a little upset at being left unprotected for the expansion draft.

Russ Conway’s extensive NHL notes start out with a look at the impending work stoppage. He says agents have been told to prepare for the league to be shut down for anywhere between a year and 18 months. James Murphy starts the countdown to the work stoppage.

Dave Scott takes a look at the Sunday night shows, and takes offense at some soft-serve writing from Dan Shaughnessy over the weekend.

NESN will have PawSox/Durham Bulls at 7:00. ESPN has Cubs/Astros at 8:00.


Ring Day

Today may be ring day for the Patriots. But the Dodgers rang Tim Wakefield’s bell yesterday as they routed the Sox 14-5. The only good news is that the Big Four of the Sox bullpen got the day off. Of course, those four are Foulke, Embree, Williamson, and Timlin. Bob Hohler, Jeff Horrigan, and Steven Krasner have the game stories.

Dan Shaughnessy finds an easy target in the optimistic Tito Francona as Shank has another theme piece today. This feature has Tito making excuses for every Sox gaffe during the last hundred or so years. In Bob Hohler’s notebook, the main topic is the injury to the most important player on the team, Curt Schilling. Schilling’s ankle injury is serious enough that he may have to shut it down until after the all-star break. Hohler also reports on the return of BH Kim and Pedro trying to get some revenge on a team he absolutely despises – the Dodgers. Horrigan tells us in his notebook to forget about seeing Carlos Beltran in a Sox uniform this year. He also has more on the Schilling and Nixon injuries. In his baseball notes, Gordon Edes makes the case for Jason Varitek. Edes also has a look at the Sox top draft pick, infielder Dustin Pedroia, who has the reputatoin of being a gamer. Paul Harber has a puff piece on Kevin Millar who made it to the bigs as a Northern League veteran.

Karen Guregian reports that Curt Schilling does not like the way the Boston media disrespects the players’ privacy in the clubhouse. Tony Massarotti commends the Sox on their performance up to this point without Garciaparra. Tony Maz also tells us that the Cubs resemble the Sox and Angels in that they have battled with serious injuries all season. Sean McAdam explains that the Sox are a bit thin on the pitching staff right now. Krasner’s notebook focuses on the Schilling injury and Sox pitchers getting hammered.

Now that he is done serving as Ty Law’s agent, Michael Smith has moved on to Richard Seymour and Tom Brady. It doesn’t seem to matter to Smith that both are signed through the next three seasons and won’t be free agents until 2007. Smith also fancies himself as a capologist and wants Brady’s contract restructured to free up some room on the salary cap. Smith also speculates that San Diego will wind up with David Patten or JJ Stokes. In some good news, Smith reports that Mike Vrabel went back to school and earned his degree from the Ohio State University this Spring. That woud allow the star to go back to his alma mater to coach when he retires. Mike Reiss has a more analytical look at the Patriots salary cap situation. The team will need to find $3 million in space to sign its draft picks. The maniacal one, Miguel, pegs the number at closer to $2 million. Reiss also looks at Brady as a candidate for a restructure. Speaking of Brady, Reiss related that Brady likes the way Corey Dillon has fit in with the team. It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, it is always the season for Kevin Mannix to go off on Bill Belichick. Mannix latest problem is the coach’s request that the press not reports on injuries at mini-camp. He argues that if the camp is open, the press should be allowed to do as it sees fit. In his notebook, Mannix rehashes a rough week for Parcells and finds someone who has another excuse for another rough season for Bledsoe. Tom Curran has a feature on Robert Kraft who has reached the top in helping to build his team and the NFL. Tom Curran seems to be one of the few actually providing news in his notebook as to the Pats mini-camp letting us know that JJ Stokes has had a great camp. Their are more kudos from Belichick to Daniel Graham. Curran also explains that Tom Brady will be even more of a coach on the field as he will be given more freedom to call audibles at the line of scrimmage.

Kevin Paul Dupont makes a case for the election of Terry O’Reilly to the Hall of Fame.

Peter May wishes the Celtics had kept Chauncy Billups. He also likens this year’s Finals to the 1984 Celtics-Lakers series. Steve Bulpett tells us that ML Carr likes Danny Ainge’s approach as GM of the Celtics. In his notebook, Bulpett explains Ainge’s use of a doctor who analyzes brain types of players. He also reports that John Carroll is not looking for a job.

Bill Griffith focuses on NBC’s coverage of the olympics. He also previews tonight’s late night sports shows. Ch. 7 has Christian Fauria and CBS-4 has Derek Lowe.

The Red Sox-Dodgers 8:00 pm game is the ESPN Sunday Night game of the week. Ch. 5 has the NBA Finals at 9:00 pm. Other than NCAA baseball tournament coverage on ESPN (all day) and NASCAR on FOX-25 (1 pm), it is not a busy day of sports on tv this afternoon. Enjoy a beautiful June Sunday.

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World Bowl XII

Saturday guest links by Rich (Rich@bostonsportsmedia.com)

Red Sox / MLB
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A late afternoon update…

More Ty Law stuff from the afternoon papers. Eric McHugh says that like any good cornerback, Law sure can backpeddle. David Pevear says Law and Bill Belichick played nice yesterday at mini-camp. Glen Farley also has a look at Law changing his tune.

Mike Fine looks at the Red Sox welcoming Eric Gagne and the Dodgers into Fenway Park. Bob Stern looks at the Red Sox bats finally coming alive. Alan Greenwood looks at Nomar coming through in a pinch for the Sox. Chaz Scoggins looks at Pokey Reese having a big night on his birthday.

Jim Baker, who retired from the Herald at the end of last year, has re-emerged with the Nashua Telegraph, doing a couple of columns a week for them. Today he looks at the job Doc Rivers is doing on the ABC broadcasts.

Frantic Friday

A very busy day for links…

The Red Sox buried the Padres last night 9-3, thanks in large part to the restored 3-4-5 part of their lineup and the contributions of the birthday boy, Pokey Reese. Steven Krasner says it’s amazing what the addition of one powerful bat can do to a lineup. Jeff Horrigan looks at the middle of the lineup doing the damage we saw last year. Nick Cafardo also looks at the Sox restoring order in their lineup. Jeff Goldberg looks at Schilling and Nomar coming up big last night. David Borges looks at the bats coming alive for Pokey’s birthday bash. Tony Massarotti still doesn’t like that Curt Schilling chats with fans online, and he’s even madder that Schilling is revealing stuff like injury information in his SoSH sessions. He takes a few potshots at Schilling and the internet in his piece from today. Looks like Evil Tony is in the house. He also furthers the stereotype that Red Sox fans must always have something to obsess about and worry over, this time it being Schilling’s ankle. Is it the fans or the media that always has to have something to talk about, to stir emotions with and to obsess over? Paul Kenyon essentially does the same thing in his article today, also looking at Schilling’s ankle, also stating that this gives Boston fans their dream…something to worry about. John Connolly and Adam Kilgore also look at Schilling’s performance last night. Mike Shalin has a look at the big night for Pokey Reese last night, while Kilgore tells us that Pokey jerseys and shirts have become the third biggest seller on the team at Twins, behind only Nomar and Johnny Damon. Rich Thompson, Kevin McNamara and Marc Craig look at Trot Nixon’s night in Pawtucket.

The Dodgers are coming, the Dodgers are coming. Bob Ryan says it’s about time. There’s an old rivalry here that needs to be picked up. Ryan chronicles some of the early World Series battles between the two franchises. Gordon Edes looks at super-closer Eric Gagne. Cafardo’s notebook says that Terry Francona will find time to play everyone. Horrigan’s notebook has more on how Francona will rotate players at SS, 2nd and 3rd. Krasner’s notebook looks at some anxious moments for Nomar last night. Goldberg’s notebook looks at Mark Bellhorn sitting last night. Borges’ notebook looks at Andy Dominique.

Ty Law wants to retire a Patriot. A bit of a reversal from his earlier statements that he never wanted to wear the jersey again. Anyhow…Law’s arrival was of course the focus at the start of Patriots mini-camp yesterday, and there are plenty of articles on the Patriots cornerback: Michael SmithMichael FelgerTom CurranAlan GreenbergMike ReissMichael Parente. Whew. Get through all of those? Yesterday was Corey Dillon’s first on-field session with the Patriots. Kevin Mannix still says the idea of Dillon on the Patriots is hard to reconcile. Curran’s notebook says that the action was fast and furious at the morning session yesterday. Felger’s notebook looks at Tom Brady taking more than a full load yesterday with backup Rohan Davey still over in Europe. Parente’s notebook looks at Rosevelt Colvin getting some action in the non-contact drills. Reiss’ notebook has more on Brady, and he is the only one to say how Colvin actually looked in the drills when he says the Patriots linebacker “appeared to move well”. That’s probably the single biggest thing I wanted to see from this camp, and while the various accounts say he participated in the drills, they’re not telling us how he looked in doing so…did he have any limp, was he at partial speed, holding back? Inquiring minds want to know…Smith’s notebook looks at Matt Light missing camp for an appendectomy. On Patriots.com, Andy Hart has an informative article from day one of camp, and you can read the transcript of Bill Belichick’s press conference.

Steve Bulpett has Danny Ainge disagreeing with Larry Bird’s comments on race. Michael Gee (subscription only) also disagrees with Bird’s comments, stating that the biggest issue is whether the player can play the game or not. He states:

At this point in Celtics history, if Danny Ainge drafted a 6-foot-10 member of the Taliban complete with beard and turban and the kid could turn in 20 points and 15 rebounds a game, Bostonians would adore their anti-American hero.

I’m not sure about that. Bulpett also has a notebook with a few Celtics related items of interest.

Nancy Marrapese-Burrell and Stephen Harris look at Andrew Raycroft winning the Calder Trophy for NHL Rookie of the year.

Jackie MacMullan looks through her childhood autograph book and comes to a realization.

Bill Griffith looks at tonight’s History Channel documentary on Bill Russell and Red Auerbach. Dave Scott lokos at the Larry Bird comments and all other happenings in Friday’s edition of Scott’s Shots. (Warning: Shameless plug ahead.) Don’t forget to check out and spread the word about Philly Sports Media Watch as well.

UPN38 has Red Sox/Dodgers at 7:00. The History Channel show mentioned above airs at 8:00 on said channel.

Midday Update

Another edition of Lunchtime Links…

Mike Fine says Nomar is back and all fans can take a deep breath. Bob Stern looks at a short, but sweet night for Nomar in his return to the big leagues. Alan Greenwood notes that an anemic night at the plate by the Red Sox spoiled the 2004 debut of Nomar.

Russ Conway looks at Ray Bourque’s election to the Hockey Hall of Fame. Mike Loftus says that Bourque always did things his way – and it led him to the Hall. Glen Farley also looks the honor for Bourque.

The Patriots opened their mini-camp this morning. Ty Law was there. He apparently had a meeting with Bill Belichick, after which he stated he wants to retire as a Patriot. You can also listen to Bill Belichick’s press conference. He’s a little testy in the beginning dealing with the repeated Ty Law questions. Nick Cafardo was on WWZN with Dave Jageler and in response to a caller stated that he can’t believe anyone wouldn’t want to hire Charlie Weis as their head coach as he is Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick rolled into one.

Padres Rain on Nomar’s parade

Nomar returned to the Red Sox last night, but the Sox fell to the Padres 8-1 with a lengthy rain delay in the middle of the game. Always fun to see what NESN can trot out there for delays of that length. Game stories from the washout are filed by Nick CafardoSean McAdamJeff HorriganDavid Heuschkel and David Borges.

Nomar’s return was of course the major story of the evening. Many seem to feel that last night was just the beginning of Nomar’s final season with the Red Sox. Tony Massarotti feels it could be that way. Dan Shaughnessy is more certain, he feels Nomar is gone for sure at the end of the year. He even tells us that Nomar’s agent is telling people he wants to play second base for the Yankees next year. Shaughnessy seems to hint that he doubts the severity of Nomar’s injury by weaving in terms like “mysterious injury” and “magic bullet theory”. (Perhaps a bit inappropriate as the nation buries a former President) He says Nomar announced that there will be no Nomar Bowl in 2005 and gives that as evidence that Nomar is outta here next year. I believe Nomar’s plan all along was to make this year’s event the last one, because it was the fifth one, and he does everything in fives…Steven Krasner doesn’t focus on the future, he just looks at last night for Nomar. Ron Borges on MSNBC says that Nomar’s return to the Red Sox is much needed. David Heuschkel says last night was Nomar’s own personal opening day. David Borges also has a look at the night for Nomar. Michael Silverman notes that Nomar’s debut was the only positive thing that happened for the Red Sox last night. Joe Haggerty says that Nomar’s return puts a big piece back in place for the Sox, and soon they’ll have Trot Nixon back as well. Michael Gee (subscription only) says that nothing about the delay in Nomar’s return was sketchy or had any ulterior motives attached. It was just the best for all parties involved for Nomar not to return until he felt ready to play. John Connolly looks at the effect of Nomar’s return on the fans. Mike Shalin gets reaction from the players that will be affected by Nomar’s return, namely Pokey Reese and Mark Bellhorn.

Adam Kilgore looks at Andy Dominique, who is relieved not to have been sent down to the minors with Nomar’s return. Dominique dropped a throw that hit him in the glove from Nomar last night, and then threw wildly to home, allowing the Padres to score twice. The ball hit him in the glove, yet Jon Meterparel, a noted Nomar-basher, (is it an act? probably) said on his sportsflash this morning that Nomar’s throw was “errant”. Sorry Jon, your agenda is showing. Connolly looks at the night for Bronson Arroyo, who pitched fairly well, but had his defense let him down. Marc Craig says Trot Nixon is closing in on his own return to Fenway. The ProJo notebook says that Nixon isn’t quite ready yet. Horrigan’s notebook says Nixon hopes to be back within a week. Cafardo’s notebook looks at Brian Daubach being sent down. Heuschkel’s notebook has more on Daubach, while Borges’ notebook looks at the moves of the day for the Red Sox.

Yesterday was a big day for Ray Bourque as the former Bruin was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell, Steve Conroy, and Paul Doyle have articles on Bourque. Everyone knew this was coming, and Kevin Paul Dupont confirms that yesterday was just a mere formality. Marrapese-Burrell also looks at Andrew Raycroft, who could be up for some postseason awards.

Michael Felger and Tom Curran look at the Patriots mini-camp which starts today. The biggest subplot is of course Ty Law and what if anything, the cornerback will have to say about his situation. Michael Preston looks at Rohan Davey’s smashing season in NFL Europe.

Steve Bulpett looks at who the Celtics might leave exposed in the expansion draft. Chucky Atkins is a surprise candidate.

John Molori looks at the comments from Larry Bird and Bill Parcells this week and gives credit to The Chris Collins Brand for being ahead of the curve on the Nomar return in this week’s edition of Media Blitz

WB56 Sports Director Mike Ratte has just signed a new three-year contract at the station. WEEI has been broadcasting in Rhode Island on 103.7 FM for over a month now, but today on their “official” opening broadcast, with live remotes in the state, they’ve run into all sorts of technical difficulties.

NESN has Red Sox/Padres at 7:00. ABC has Lakers/Pistons game three at 9:00.

Lunchtime Links

A few links from the afternoon papers. Bob Stern looks at Pedro’s outing last night, and says Pedro feels the best is yet to come. David Pevear also has a look at Pedro displaying his old form. Alan Greenwood looks at a battle of the aces last night at Fenway. Mike Fine has an extensive look at the Red Sox awaiting the return of Nomar. The Dirt Dogs website says that Nomar will play for Boston tonight, but also says that the Red Sox will make a decision based on a physical exam this afternoon. That’s about as clear as mud. Greenwood’s notebook has more on Nomar’s extended stay in the minors. Fine’s notebook looks at the dominance of Pedro last night.

Sports Business News has an interesting feature on Red Sox broadcaster Joe Castiglione – a guy no one has a bad word to say of.

Larry Bird is in the headlines today, after making comments in an ESPN interview that the NBA needs more white stars, and then nothing offended him more during his playing days then to be guarded by a white player.

Eric McHugh looks at Corey Dillon as he prepares for his first mini-camp action with the Patriots. McHugh also has a look at the other new faces in camp, and takes a quick look at each position.

Vintage Pedro

Pedro was on his vintage game last night, outdueling David Wells and blanking the Padres over eight innings. Jeff Horrigan notes that Pedro was able to find a flaw in his delivery that he corrected and you saw the results. Steven Krasner looks at Pedro returning to Ace form. David Heuschkel has Pedro giving credit to his defense. Some great defensive plays turned in by Johnny Damon, Manny and Pokey Reese. Bob Lobel last night on his sportscast asked how in the world you can justify taking Reese off of shortstop when Nomar returns. Bob Hohler is into hair. Lenny Megliola says Pedro finally performed up to his salary. David Borges says with the Pedro/Wells matchup, it was 1998 all over again. Dan Shaughnessy feels all warm and fuzzy after the performance of Pedro last night. Howard Bryant (subscription only) says that a lot of things looked familiar last night, but the biggest thing was the dominance of Pedro. A no-name ProJo article says that Pedro’s performance last night was the result of a lot of hard work.

Tony Massarotti says that Nomar is sticking it to the Red Sox, and he doesn’t blame him one bit for doing so. Alex Speier looks at what the deal it with Nomar, asking could, should and would Nomar return. Jeff Jacobs says that Nomar’s delayed returned is just part of his obsessive compulsive disorder and that he is just trying to plan for the perfect time to come back. John Tomase says that times have certainly changed for Nomar here in Boston. Michael Silverman says that the Sox and Nomar will get together today to decide if he’s ready to play on the big club tonight. Adam Kilgore looks at Nomar’s night in Pawtucket. Jeff Sullivan also looks at Nomar’s decision to stay in Pawtucket another night.

Mike Shalin has a look at Rod Beck, happy to be in baseball and with the Padres. Michael Gee (subscription only) says that students of pitching would be better off watching David Wells instead of Pedro, because Wells has learned and perfected the craft of pitching, while Pedro relies more on natural ability. Marc Craig looks at some of the Padres getting to check out Fenway for the first time. Shalin also has a look at Johnny Damon driving in the winning run last night. Hohler’s extensive notebook says that Scott Williamson will soon return to the Red Sox. Horrigan’s notebook leads with Theo drafting some sons of Red Sox employees, including the son of Terry Francona. Steve Krasner looks at Lynn Jones making an appearance in uniform at Fenway. Heuschkel’s notebook looks at Nomar in Pawtucket last night. Borges’ notebook also looks at the Nomar watch.

The Patriots have their mini-camp this week, and Charlie Weis wanted to clear the air before it got started and not be a distraction. Michael Felger looks at Weis distancing himself from the comments of his agent. Tom Curran wonders is Weis made the clarification at the request of the Patriots. Michael Smith also has a piece on Weis, saying that the coach is happy with his contract and status with the Patriots. Eric McHugh looks at Rosevelt Colvin, who is cautiously looking forward to training camp. Felger also has a look at Richard Seymour as he copes with the offseason tragedy involving his father.

Kevin Paul Dupont ponders the future of the NHL, and lists out some things for hockey fans to look forward to this summer. Stephen Harris looks back at the Stanley Cup Finals series which could’ve boosted the sport.

Steve Bulpett and Peter May look at the Lakers tying up the NBA finals after being rescued by Kobe. Bulpett’s notebook has a look at Doc Rivers and how he is balancing his ABC broadcasting duties with his new job as coach of the Celtics. May’s notebook looks at Mark Blount opting for free agency, and also the Celtics bringing in Nate Walton, son of Bill as an intern.

Bob Halloran looks at some athletes who have made deals with the devil in the past.

NESN has Red Sox/Padres at 7:00. (ESPN Nationally – Alternate game is Cubs/Cardinals) ESPN2 has Reds/A’s at 10:00.


Will Nomar play tonight for the big club or won’t he? That is the question of the day. The shortstop seems hesitant to make the jump to the big club and declare himself ready to play. Bob Hohler reports that Garciaparra may wish to play one more game for Pawtucket before joining Boston. Talk radio has been a little more harsh on Nomar, with WEEI hosts and callers still openly speculating if Nomar is trying to stick it to management and control the situation. In certain aspects I can’t help but think of when Manny broke his finger a couple years ago, and played in Pawtucket – played awful – and the press was all over him for taking his time coming back to the big club. In that instance, the radio people were saying Manny was more comfortable in Pawtucket and would prefer to just stay there. What do any of these guys (radio) know about the injuries and what is going on in a players mind? They don’t know any more than you or I. The Nomar situation is curious, no doubt about it, but getting the facts and discerning them from the wild speculation is a job in itself for fans of the team. Michael Silverman agrees that tomorrow or Thursday seems more likely for Nomar’s 2004 debut with the Red Sox. Gerry Callahan (subscription only) tells us that Nomar is going to fell the pressure immediately, and we will all get to see how he is going to react. It’s as if he’s being put into a playoff situation everyday for the rest of the year. Alex Speier has an article looking at how Nomar and Terry Francona go way back. Tony Massarotti says that when Nomar does return, he’s going to provide a huge energy boost to the Red Sox and their lineup. David Heuschkel also has a look at Nomar’s impending return.

The MLB draft was yesterday, and Red Sox fans felt further frustration with the ineptitude of the information provided by the local media. WEEI Flash guy Pete Sheppard was consistently an hour and half behind in the process, showing no initiative to do a little work and get information out to listeners. (Red Sox picks were posted on the message board of this site and others within minutes of being announced, along with information about the draftees.) The MLB draft isn’t a big deal like the NFL draft, but it’s still nice to get information as it happens. Michael Silverman’s notebook looks at the Red Sox nabbing a shortstop with their first pick at #65 overall. Marc Craig looks at Mark Rogers from Maine, being selected by the Brewers with the fifth overall pick. Dan Ventura looks at Peabody’s Ryan Moorer getting picked by the Cubs. John Gillooly looks at Pawtucket’s Jay Rainville being picked 39th overall by the Twins. Kevin Gray has a look at some NH kids being drafted. Christopher L. Gasper and Ventura have articles on Jeff Allison, the former Peabody star isn’t ready to rejoin the Marlins organization anytime soon, as he still has some things to sort out in his life.

Bob Hohler’s notebook has a look at the many Padre/Red Sox connections that will be in evidence for this week’s interleague series. He also reports on Trot Nixon, who is ready to begin a rehab assignment of his own. The ProJo notebook has more on Nomar, and looks ahead to the Dodgers shuffling their rotation for Fenway.

I mentioned in this space yesterday about Michael Smith’s budding relationship with the Poston brothers and how that could be influencing his writing. I guess I’m not the only one who noticed. From ProFootballTalk.com under the subheading “Postons Trying To Soften Image?”

Given the realities of gathering and reporting NFL news in major newspapers, some league insiders believe that the Postons have been playing quid pro quo with Michael Smith of the Boston Globe in exchange for favorable coverage in the market where the team with which they have a bad relationship resides, due in large part to a lingering dispute between the Pats and defensive back Ty Law.

Kevin Paul Dupont and Stephen Harris have coverage of Tampa winning the Stanley Cup. Mick Colageo says the Cup will be making a stop in New Bedford this summer, and has other NHL news of note. Dupont’s notebook looks at Ray Bourque providing a boost to a couple of old teammates. Harris’ notebook has Dave Andreychuk finally getting the Cup.

Steve Bulpett reports that the Celtics are close to a deal with another assistant coach, this time one who will focus on developing the skills of young players. Shira Springer looks at the Lakers hoping to bounce back in game two. Bulpett also looks at the Pistons getting their offense in gear with the help of lousy defense from the Lakers. Bill Reynolds says we might have an NBA Finals, after all.

Bob Ryan says that while Smarty Jones may not have won the Triple Crown, thoroughbred racing could be a big winner and back on the rise.

Bill Griffith looks at WEEI’s “Official” launch in Rhode Island. East Side Boxing has still more details on the Borges/Katz rumble in Vegas.

NESN has Red Sox/Padres at 7:00. ABC has Pistons/Lakers at 9:00.