April is over and May is already a different month for your Boston Red Sox. Jonathan Papelbon blew his first save of the season last night against the Oakland A’s, and Brendan Donnelly gave up the game winning run in the 10th inning as the Red Sox fell 5-4 at Fenway Park.
Jeff Horrigan looks at the back end of the bullpen faltering for the first time this season for the Red Sox. Gordon Edes has more on the loss for the Red Sox, which saw Oakland’s Huston Street come in and slam the door on the heart of the Sox lineup after being given the lead. Steven Krasner says that it was just one of those nights for Papelbon. Tom Yantz reports on a frustrating loss for the Red Sox. Phil O’Neill says last night might be a hint that the rest of the season might be tougher than April was for the Red Sox.
Check out the coverage from Oakland on the Bay Area Sports Pages.
Rob Bradford looks at Papelbon’s first blown save of the season, and the man who hit the home run off of him, A’s rookie outfielder Travis Buck. Christopher L. Gasper also looks at the home run by Buck, who is now hitting .221 on the season. Sean McAdam has more on one that got away for Papelbon. Nick Cafardo looks at the shock of seeing this happen to Papelbon, who has been so dominant thus far. Lenny Megliola also looks at a rare failure for the Sox closer.
Stephen Harris has Curt Schilling coming up empty after pitching seven strong innings and seeing his win evaporate when Papelbon blew the save. Alex Speier writes about how effective the Red Sox bullpen was in April. Cafardo asserts that Terry Francona is at the top of his game right now, making all the right moves, noting that he is managing better right now than any manager in the history of the franchise. (I agree, but how do you measure that?) Bradford has Julian Tavarez saying that he thinks the Sox don’t need to get Clemens.
Jon Couture says that this season will go a long way in determining Theo Epstein’s worth as a team builder. Bradford also has Mike Lowell breaking in a new game glove to try and get his errors under control. Alex Speier looks at tonight’s starter, Josh Beckett, who appears to have matured as a pitcher thus far this season.
Horrigan says that Jon Lester is likely to be given more time in Pawtucket to build up his stamina and arm strength. Brendan McGair has Lester learning to deal with the cautious treatment he’s getting from the Red Sox. McGair also reports on the first rough outing for Craig Hansen, which left the reliever frustrated enough to punch the water cooler.
Horrigan’s notebook has Terry Francona outlining his plan to give both Dustin Pedroia and Alex Cora time at second base. Edes’ notebook has more from Francona on the second base rotation. The Projo notebook has Donnelly also being scored on for the first time this season. Yantz’s notebook has Coco Crisp not thinking about his injured side as he went all out to catch a fly ball in the seventh inning last night. O’Neill’s notebook has Francona staying patient with Pedroia despite his struggles at the plate.
John Altavilla says that bringing in Randy Moss does represent a remodel of sorts for Bill Belichick and the Patriots, but that the risk is low and the potential rewards are great. Eric McHugh says that the “Randy Moss trade doesn’t signal the end of New England Patriots civilization as we know it.” Mark Farinella talks to the “voice of doom” about Moss to the Patriots, and the latter has a hard time making a case for the doom of the Patriots. (Did I really just say that about an imaginary conversation?) Jim Donaldson says that the Dream Team that the Patriots have assembled is sure to give opponents nightmares.
On BSMW Game Day, Dan Snapp has heard about enough from another Dan.
Mike Reiss outlines five issues that the Patriots still have to resolve before the season starts, noting there is plenty of work to be done between now and then. Karen Guregian has Tedy Bruschi talking about how much things have changed during his tenure with the Patriots, where now all the top players in the league want to come to Foxboro. Christopher Price looks at the misconceptions which have dogged Patriots first round choice Brandon Meriweather. Guregian’s notebook has Bruschi relieved to be getting the cast off his wrist today, and has Scott Pioli appearing on WEEI to talk about the Randy Moss acquisition.
Jackie MacMullan has playoff basketball envy.