Building on Saturday, today we’ve got three pro sports teams in action, two of them in the playoffs, the Red Sox going for a four game sweep of the Orioles, and the Boston Marathon on top of it all.
If you’ve been following this site for some time, you probably know not to expect the full range of Marathon links out of BSMW. No disrespect to the Marathon, it’s a Boston institution and anyone who undertakes the challenge of taking it on has my deepest respect. For the Marathon stories, we’ll send you over to the special sections set up by Boston.com and the BostonHerald.com.
The Red Sox beat the Orioles yesterday, 2-1 behind a strong performance from Jon Lester, who looked more like the 2008 version of Lester we enjoyed so much last season. Adam Kilgore has Lester firing his full fastball yesterday after appearing to be limited in previous starts. John Tomase has the Sox getting to .500 after their fourth straight victory. Paul Jarvey has Lester turning in his best performance of the young season. Joe McDonald and Jeff Goldberg have more on the return to form for Lester.
Michael Vega has Takashi Saito notching his first save with the Red Sox, albeit a shaky one. Steve Buckley thinks that we might be watching Jon Lester-Nick Markakis battles for years to come. Brian MacPherson has Lester turning things around yesterday. Lenny Megliola says that this was a statement start for Lester and the Red Sox. Ron Chimelis says that Lester made it look easy, but it wasn’t. Mike Fine has Lester and the Sox turning a corner yesterday.
Kilgore has David Ortiz and his teammates still not worried about Big Papi’s slow start. Jim Donaldson breaks the news to us that Ortiz is struggling. Chimelis reminds us that Ortiz has started slowly before for the Red Sox. Rob Bradford tries to figure out Papi’s problem in his five things from yesterday.
Buckley has Jacoby Ellsbury starting to shake the cobwebs off his swing. Daniel Barbarisi has Brad Wilkerson deciding to retire. Joe Haggerty has the bullpen proving to be a strength for the Red Sox thus far.
Joe Fitzgerald checks in with 100-year-old Red Sox fan Arthur Giddon, who will be an honorary batboy this weekend.
Kilgore’s notebook has Josh Beckett dropping the appeal of his suspension, at the request of the club. Tomase’s notebook has more on Beckett, and on a visit from Mike Timlin. McDonald’s notebook has Beckett dropping the appeal after the suspension was reduced by a game. Glen Farley’s notebook has more on the reduced suspension for Beckett. Chimelis’ notebook has still more on Beckett. Jarvey’s notebook has Jonathan Papelbon getting the day off. Bradford picks up Some stuff from another win.
The Bruins are in Montreal tonight for game three of their opening round series, holding a 2-0 series lead.
Kevin Paul Dupont has the Bruins getting a simple message from their coach: “Stay grounded, and focus on the next game.” Stephen Harris says that the strong game two win was a benchmark performance for the Bruins. Mike Loftus has the Bruins set to face their game three test without Milan Lucic. Megliola has the Bruins aware that they are heading into hostile territory tonight. Haggerty says that Not All is Lost For the Habs.
Fluto Shinzawa has the Bruins keeping teammate Matt Hunwick in their thoughts after the defenseman underwent surgery Saturday afternoon to remove a ruptured spleen. Loftus has the Bruins hearts and minds with Hunwick. Steve Conroy has the Bruins showing a kind of toughness that often is overlooked in game two. Conroy says that the Bruins will be without Milan Lucic tonight.
Shinzawa’s notebook has Milan Lucic suspended for tonight’s game for his “reckless” hit on Maxim Lapierre. With Lucic out, Conroy’s notebook says that Byron Bitz is likely to make his playoff debut tonight.
After dropping game one, the Celtics face basically a must-win tonight at the Garden.
Marc J. Spears has the Celtics focused on what to do with “Little LeBron” as Bulls rookie Derrick Rose has been dubbed. Steve Bulpett tries to figure out the latest in the Kevin Garnett saga after KG was spotted at the Celtics practice facility last night. He also has the Celtics hoping they can do a far better job on Rose tonight. Bill Doyle has Kendrick Perkins saying that Rose won’t have another game like Saturday. Scott Souza says that the Celtics aren’t going to change their gameplan, just the execution of it. Jeff Goodman says that Ray Allen disappearing the playoffs is nothing new.
Frank Dell’Apa has the Celtics focused on the missteps in game one and clear on what they need to do to turn around. Mark Murphy says that the Celtics hope to have things cleaned up for tonight’s game. Robert Lee says that the Celtics have plenty to correct for game two. Tim Weisberg has Ray Allen confident that he and the Celtics will be better tonight. Jim Fenton says that the Celtics will need to bounce back in a hurry tonight.
Murphy has Danny Ainge out of the hospital.
Scott Benson continues the Patriots Daily draft preparation with a look at the First Day Defensive Linemen. For a complete directory of the extensive PD draft materials, check out Your One Stop Links Shop for PD Draft Coverage.
Christopher L. Gasper has a good look at the draft preparation put in by Bill Belichick and the Patriots front office. Christopher Price has Sammy Morris looking forward to his third season with the Patriots. Michael Felger wonders if the much-discussed Julius Peppers deal is finally getting close.
Mike Reiss looks at cornerbacks in the draft, including UConn’s Darius Butler. Karen Guregian checks out the running backs and the Quarterbacks, with an eye on a possible Tom Brady successor. Mark Farinella checks the tight ends.
James Vaznis says that visiting sports fans have provided the city an economic punch.