Another Manny mess, a Red Sox win, good news on Matt Clement, and reporting day for Patriots training camp make up most of the stories today.
Surrounded by turmoil and chaos is when these Red Sox seem to do some of their best work, and it was shown once again yesterday as they defeated the Devil Rays 4-1 in an afternoon game in Tampa. Chris Snow has the game story for the Globe, noting the quirky lineup and even some small ball used by the Red Sox to get the win. Michael Silverman looks at Tim Wakefield again coming through for the Red Sox and pitching into the eighth inning to give the bullpen a bit of a rest after the extra inning affairs of the last couple nights. Steven Krasner notes the heads up play of Edgar Renteria allowed the Red Sox one of their runs in the sixth. David Heuschkel focuses on the job turned in by Wakefield in his game story. David Borges says that Wakefield was the perfect guy to pitch yesterday and in the process notched his 123rd victory with the Red Sox, moving him into a third place tie all time for the franchise. Only Cy Young and Roger Clemens have more wins as members of the Red Sox.
The game of course was secondary, and you will likely not hear much talk of what actually happened on the field today on the airwaves. You won’t hear about the heady play of Edgar Renteria, nor the gutty performance of Tim Wakefield. You might hear some about Curt Schilling escaping in the ninth, but I kind of doubt it. You’re going to have Manny talk…all day, probably tomorrow too, as there is an off day today. The articles in the paper today aren’t as nasty as I thought they might be, Gordon Edes writes that it’s time to stop giving Manny a free pass. His strongest word on the matter is calling it “pathetic” that Manny needed a day off yesterday after his teammate Matt Clement left the field on a stretcher the night before. Tony Massarotti provides some pretty good analysis of what Manny really is…and what he isn’t:
All of this reflects most poorly on Ramirez, who is not a bad guy as much he is an astonishingly irresponsible one. Like Matt Damon in "Good Will Hunting," Ramirez does not want the burden of his talent because, you know, someone might actually start to expect something from him. So he breezes along through life, worrying only about what matters to him (hitting, most of the time) and showing little regard for the wants and needs of others.
I think that might be the best portrait of Manny that I’ve seen recently. David Heuschkel has a good piece on the Ramirez topic today as well, and he notes that the reaction in the Red Sox clubhouse to Manny’s actions yesterday “wasn’t as negative as it probably will be on the talk shows today.” Michael Silverman reports on Terry Francona’s explanation for Manny’s absence from the lineup. An emailer asked if recent events vindicate John Tomase’s article from earlier this season about Manny. My response? Since Tomase himself recently said on WEEI that his article was “needlessly over the top” in how he went after Ramirez, I say no, he isn’t vindicated by recent events.
Interestingly, the Globe’s answer to the Inside Track, the Living/Arts Names column was able to get a hold of Mrs Ramirez, who confirmed that she is pregnant, and said the couple is happy in Boston.
As for the Sports Illustrated item insinuating that the proud papa is unhappy in Boston and wants out, Juliana had this to say: "Manny hasn't told me anything about that. As a family, we love Boston and love living here."
Larry Lucchino on Dennis and Callahan this morning however stated that Manny did ask for a trade and that the team is exploring their options.
The good news from yesterday was that Matt Clement was released from the hospital, just a day after being struck on the head by a line drive. Edes and Snow have the story of the Red Sox All Star pitcher in the Globe, Tony Massarotti reports on Clement being discharged to the team’s care yesterday and flying back with the club to Boston last night. Krasner reports that while Clement is seemingly ok, Trot Nixon was placed on the DL with his oblique strain. Borges also has a piece on the two injuries and the prognosis for each. Michael Levenson reports in the Globe on reaction to Manny Decarmen’s debut with the Red Sox back in his home neighborhood of Hyde Park.
Snow’s notebook examines Nixon’s injury a little more. Silverman’s notebook has more on the Red Sox right fielder. Krasner’s notebook looks at Manny sitting out yesterday. Hesuchkel’s notebook looks at Clement being released from the hospital, but also reports that Mike Timlin has a bit of a sore elbow. Borges’ notebook has more on Manny not being in the lineup.
Today is reporting day for Patriots veterans at training camp and Tom E Curran knows we’re tired of the usual “Training camp questions” columns, so he starts out with some answers, and then goes into the questions. Ian M Clark says that yeah, there may be some questions, but c’mon, these are the Pats we’re talking about here. Michael Felger analyzes the special teams this morning and says there are some issues and questions there. Michael Parente also looks at the special teams, headlined by Adam Vinatieri. Nick Cafardo reports that while Richard Seymour’s contract is still up in the air, apparently the Patriots have done something to make Rodney Harrison happy. Much praise has been heaped (deservedly so) on Mike Reiss’ blog, Reiss’ Pieces, however it looks like he’s about to get a little competition, as the Projo has launched a Patriots blog with Tom E Curran, simply called the Projo PatsBlog.
Mick Colageo ponders whether the Bruins could be without both Joe Thornton and Sergei Samsonov come next summer. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell and Stephen Harris take a quick look at the schedule, which was released and has the Bruins opening up on October 5th against the Canadiens.
Shira Springer talks to the newest Celtic, Brian Scalabrine.
The Yankees lost to the Twins last night, pushing the Red Sox lead in the AL East to two games. Larry Brown is expected to be named coach of the Knicks today. Get all the stories at the New York Sports News page.
The Red Sox are off tonight, NESN has CFL football with Montreal/Toronto starting at 7:30.