So who are they going to kick around now?
The Boston sports media lost their favorite whipping boy yesterday when the Red Sox gave Manny Ramirez to the Dodgers, and traded Brandon Moss and Craig Hanson to the Pirates for Jason Bay, who has some might big shoes to fill in the Red Sox lineup.
There’s plenty of ugliness in the stories today, some of it rightfully so, given the disgraceful way Manny behaved in his final weeks with the Red Sox. But seriously, once the smoke clears, who are they going to kick around? Who are they going to spend hour after hour, day after day talking about? Columnists and sports radio hosts should be in mourning today, rather than exchanging awkward high fives in the office.
Let’s see, Dan Shaughnessy – check. Gerry Callahan – double check. Gerry’s been waiting his whole life to write this column. David Scott has this whole Manny mania really setting Peter Gammons off yesterday. Gammons had some very, very harsh things to say about Ramirez. Bill Reynolds says that the circus has finally left town. Jeff Jacobs says that Theo Epstein found a cure for (clubhouse) cancer with this deal. Jim Donaldson says that the Red Sox are now underdogs in the playoff race.
Sean McAdam has the Red Sox paying a heavy price in order to get Ramirez out of town. Rob Bradford and Gordon Edes, each on their last day on the job, report on how the Manny trade went down. Jeff Goldberg has the Manny marriage coming to an end after eight years. Paul Jarvey has the Red Sox ridding themselves of a major distraction with the deal. Bill Burt says that the post-trade Red Sox will have their work cut out for them. Jon Couture notes that going forward, the Red Sox will have no one to blame except themselves. Joe Haggerty also reports on the deal.
Amalie Benjamin has Jason Bay saying that he’s not trying to replace Manny Ramirez. Um, sorry Jason, that’s exactly what you’re doing. Good luck with that. Steven Krasner says that the Red Sox offense is certainly not going to pack as much punch with Bay in the lineup instead of Manny. Mike Fine says Bay will fit in nicely to the Red Sox lineup. McAdam has two National League talent evaluators weigh in on Bay as a player. “Bland” is one word they use. Alex Speier talks to Pirates GM Neal Huntington, a NH native about Bay and the trade process. Mick Colageo says that Bay has some mighty big shoes to fill.
Nick Cafardo says that the Manny deal was necessary. Tony Massarotti says that the Red Sox ultimately caved on this one, and game Manny exactly what he wanted…again. Massarotti has one of the better takes on this whole situation. Lenny Megliola says that the trade had to be made. Ron Chimelis is perhaps the first to speculate which hat Manny will wear into the Hall of Fame. Kevin Gray has the Manny era ending with a sigh of relief. Paul Kenyon has Brandon Moss reacting to the trade with surprise. Dom Amore lists out the winners and losers at the trade deadline.
Benjamin’s minor league notebook has a look at Charlie Zink, who has been dominant at Pawtucket.
Mike Reiss has a feature on Andre Tippett, whose playing career will be honored with his enshrinement into the Hall of Fame this weekend. John Tomase talks to Jim Kelly and Ken O’Brien – the two QB’s most sacked by Tippett, about the Hall of Fame Patriot.
Christopher L. Gasper has a look at second year safety Brandon Meriweather, who has been making a lot of noise…literally…during this camp. Karen Guregian also has a look at Meriweather, who has opened eyes as well as ears in this camp. Douglas Flynn has Meriweather a year older and wiser in this camp, and the experience is paying off. David Brown says that confidence is the biggest difference for Meriweather in this camp.
Eric McHugh says that Patriots training camp has been pretty quiet this summer as compare to previous years. Kevin McNamara has Tedy Bruschi working with the young linebackers in Patriots camp to make sure they know their roles and what is expected of them. Steve Buckley has Ty Warren not yet ready to buy into the hype about this new Patriots defense. Rich Garven has Tank Williams hoping to provide a boost to the Patriots defense – wherever he plays. Mark Farinella has rookie Terrence Wheatley doing his best to learn the ropes in his first camp.
Christopher Price has Marcus Pollard comparing Bill Belichick and Tony Dungy. Buckley has a look at cancer survivor Joe Andruzzi, who was at Patriots camp, and plans to settle in the Boston area. Ian M. Clark says that with the departure of Donte’ Stallworth in the offseason there is an opening at third receiver. Eric Peterson says that Chad Jackson and Jabar Gaffney are both competing for that spot.
Gasper’s notebook has Fernando Bryant bouncing back from an ugly collision with a teammate in practice. Guregian’s notebook has Rodney Harrison responding to the “dirtiest player” label that has been stuck on him. McNamara’s notebook has a direct call from Bill Belichick being the reason Pollard is here with the Patriots. Garven’s notebook has former safety Ray Ventrone learning the ropes at receiver this camp, while also keeping up with defense and special teams. Brown’s notebook has rookie linebacker Jerod Mayo mistakenly taking out the punter at practice yesterday. Farinella’s notebook has the team getting a break today after 13 practices in 8 days.
Marc J. Spears has the Celtics making plans to hold training camp in Newport, Rhode Island this fall.
Steve Conroy has a mini-feature on Patrice Bergeron, who has his injury behind him, and is looking forward to the upcoming season with the Bruins.
Bill Doyle checks in with WCVB sports anchor Mike Dowling.