The Red Sox pulled out another home win last night, coming from behind and erasing an early deficit. The Patriots had their first cutdown day yesterday and new defensive coordinator Eric Mangini met with the press. The Bruins made a couple of small moves, and there’s another couple items here and there in this morning’s links.
It looked to be a long night for the Red Sox, as Curt Schilling again struggled out of the game, putting his team in a 5-0 hole after two innings. However, the erstwhile ace settled down, and looked much better over his last several innings, and the Red Sox rallied for a 7-6 victory at Fenway Park. Chris Snow wishes the Red Sox could bottle whatever passion seems to arise from them seemingly whenever they play Tampa Bay. Jeff Horrigan says that Schilling is still inconsistent, but fortunately his teammates who swing the bats are the same bunch. Steven Krasner writes that Trot Nixon should be awarded a save and a win for his contributions last night. David Heuschkel notes that it was a small step for Schilling last night as his teammates were able to rally for the win. Lenny Megliola observes that after hearing a few boos in the second inning, Schilling pitched four scoreless innings the rest of the way. David Borges says that number seven once again came up lucky for the Sox.
Dan Shaughnessy compares Schilling to “Cam Neely after Ulf Samuelsson’s cheap shot.” You know Dan is secretly reveling in the struggles of Schilling, though he does show him proper respect by calling the booing which occurred last night “Sheer blasphemy”. Jon Couture says that nothing is certain about Schilling right now, except that he’s going to work at getting better. Sean McAdam says that the Red Sox know that their team runs on offense, while at the same time trying to come up with ways to improve their pitching. Tony Massarotti wonders how much longer the team can go on being so one-dimensional.
Matt Kalman has a brief report on Keith Foulke’s outing in Lowell last night, where the Red Sox rehabbing closer struggled once again, giving up four hits and two runs in one inning, while topping out at 87 mph. Nick Cafardo looks at David Wells getting summoned to the commissioner’s office after his statements from Monday night. The Wells comments dominated talk radio and television yesterday. As I listened and watched, I began to wonder when exactly did comments made by the players become more important than the onfield action. Certainly what Wells said was newsworthy and warranted some discussion. However, the almost 24 hour analysis of what he said, as if he were the President or some other Statesman in the “real world” seemed a little out of place with all the other things going on around here. John Tomase wishes Wells would grow up. Horrigan and Borges look at the respect that the Red Sox have for their former teammate, Mark Bellhorn, who signed with the Yankees yesterday. Interesting how many media types said strongly that no team would want to pick up Bellhorn down the stretch.
Bob Hohler submits a semi-feature on the Faith of the Red Sox. He says that the club has on the roster a dozen players who are evangelical Christians, which he says is the largest group on one team in baseball. He examines the growing influence of religion in the clubhouse and how the Red Sox are leading the pack in this regard. Both the Yankees and A’s apparently wanted Bellhorn very much. Howard Bryant (subscription only)looks at how Bronson Arroyo has apparently canceled his remaining musical appearances for this season to concentrate on baseball, whether Johnny Damon might be a fit for the Yankees after the season and the resurgence of the Oakland A’s. Steve Bailey in the Downtown section of the Globe says that it is slowly becoming clear what the Red Sox want to do in the way of improvements in the Fenway area. Sasha Talcott reports on how the Red Sox/Boston College partnership in the Fenway Sports Group is working out.
I was amazed yesterday while listening to the Big Show that all of the panel members (Pete Sheppard, Michael Felger and Sean McAdam) were talking about Craig Hansen and how he would be getting called up Thursday and what his role in September would be. They were even getting a little heated as to whether he would close, or be eased into a setup role. A caller had to bring to their attention Gordon Edes comment in the fourth paragraph of his game story yesterday when he reported that Hansen had been shut down indefinitely with a tired arm.
Snow’s notebook looks at moves the club is making in preparation for setting their postseason roster. He also reports on Hansen, and how the closer will throw Friday to see if his arm is merely “dead” as many pitchers experience during spring training, or if there is something more significant going on. Horrigan’s notebook looks at Wells getting summoned to Bud Selig’s office and reports that trade talks for Steve Trachsel are dead, as Mets GM Omar Minaya has apparently been playing with the Red Sox again. The ProJo notebook looks at Johnny Damon getting into the game last night. Heuschkel’s notebook has more on Wells. Borges’ notebook reports on Kevin Youkilis rejoining the big club today.
Eric Mangini was in the spotlight yesterday as the Patriots defensive coordinator spoke to the media about the progress of his unit during his first training camp in charge. Alan Greenberg has probably the most complete report on the session yesterday. Jerome Solomon reports that Mangini seemed a little uncomfortable in the spotlight and didn’t give many specifics during his session. Chris Kennedy says that it has been a smooth transition thus far for the defense. Michael Parente says that Mangini and Romeo Crennel, and even Bill Belichick, are cut from the same cloth. Shalise Manza Young refers to Mangini as a coaching savant, as his rise through the coaching ranks has been rapid.
Karen Guregian looks at Deion Branch, who wishes to shed the “fragile” label. Branch hasn’t been injured during camp, but hasn’t played a down in any of the preseason games, mostly it appears as a precaution. Ian M Clark looks at Monty Beisel making an impact on the Patriots during the preseason. Hector Longo says that Rohan Davey’s career in New England was cut short by poor timing. He seems to indicate that New England fans never accepted the backup quarterback due to his race, comparing him to Michael Bishop and saying the fans never gave him a fair chance. Guregian has a quick report on Tedy Bruschi making an appearance in the lockerrom and how his mere presence can lift up the club.
Solomon’s notebook focuses on the cuts made yesterday, as does Young’s notebook. Guregian’s notebook has more on Mangini. Kennedy’s notebook has another look at Deion Branch. Parente’s notebook has more on the cuts.
Nancy Marrapese Burrell, Stephen Harris and Mick Colageo all report on Hal Gill signing his one year qualifying offer and the Bruins making a minor trade yesterday. Terry Nau talks to Pawtucket native and NHL defenseman Keith Carney about getting back to work and the damage done by the work stoppage.
Jim Donaldson reports on getting out of New Orleans, where he had been this last weekend while getting his son settled at Tulane University.
The Yankees lost in Seattle last night, The New York Times has an article on Curt Schilling. You can get the coverage over at the New York Sports page. Check out the news from the West coast on the Bay Area Sports page.
NESN has Red Sox/Devil Rays at 7:00. ESPN has baseball at 8:00, and ESPN2 has A’s/Angels at 10:00.