In the fifth inning last night against the Toronto Blue Jays, it finally happened. Facing rookie pitcher Brett Cecil, David Ortiz broke through and connected for his first home run of the season – a bomb to the camera position in straight-away center field.
Hopefully it is the first of many more to come.
Adam Kilgore has Ortiz as the main story in the clubhouse following the Red Sox 8-3 win last night. Michael Silverman has Ortiz finally putting the “Big” back into Big Papi. Kevin McNamara has Ortiz’s father coming into town to offer support and advice. Jeff Goldberg has Ortiz putting an exclamation mark on things last night. Ron Chimelis has life returning to normal last night at Fenway. Bill Ballou has the Sox hoping that last night was just the start of things for Ortiz.
A warm and fuzzy Dan Shaughnessy says that the fans reaction to Ortiz is why the truly great players love to come here. Steve Buckley says that last night turned into an outrageously festive night at the old ballyard. Bill Reynolds says that fair or unfair, Ortiz is branded with baseball Scarlett Letter of steroid suspicion. Mike Fine has more on the return of Big Papi.
Tony Massarotti explores whether Ortiz will be able to make the necessary adjustments as he ages to in order to remain productive. Brian MacPherson notes that finally all is right with the world. Alex Speier looks at what we can learn from the end of the drought.
Nick Cafardo has Jacoby Ellsbury tying the major league record with 12 putouts in centerfield last night. McDonald has more on Ellsbury catching a major-league record last night. Joe McDonald notes that the Red Sox offense returned with Kevin Youkilis. Speier notes the struggles of another slugger in the Red Sox organization, Lars Anderson, who is hitting just .229 in AA Portland.
Kilgore has Jason Bay saying that he doesn’t want to play all 162 games this season, it just puts too much strain on the body. McNamara though, says that Boston’s new ironman doesn’t plan on missing any games. Buckley has the Grandfather of Daniel Bard, Fran O’Brien, who happened to coach baseball at MIT and Holy Cross, thrilled at being able to watch his grandson at Fenway Park. McNamara notes that it was a rough home debut for Bard.
Jon Couture has a look at Toronto second baseman Aaron Hill, who led the Wareham Gatemen to the 2001 Cape League title.
Kilgore’s notebook has Kevin Youkilis picking up right where he left off with three hits last night. Silverman’s notebook has more on Ellsbury tying the record. Chimelis’ notebook has more on the return of Youkilis. Ballou’s notebook has the Sox weathering the storm in Youkilis’ absence, and glad to have him back. A notebook from Glen Farley reports that Mark Kotsay is heading to Pawtucket in preparation for a return to the Red Sox.
The media got to take a look at the Patriots Organized Team Activity sessions yesterday, and though it was mostly for the young players and newcomers, there was plenty to report.
Karen Guregian has veteran Fred Taylor among those on the field yesterday. Mark Farinella has the Patriots uniform suiting Taylor very well. Shalise Manza Young has Taylor glad to be able to get on the field and have a chance to learn the playbook. Andy Vogt says that the running back seems Taylor-made for New England. Mike Petraglia has Taylor hoping to catch Jim Brown in the record books.
Ron Borges has Tank Williams believing that he can be a big part of the Patriots defense this season. Christopher L. Gasper has second year players Shawn Crable and Terrence Wheatley looking to make a big leap this season in the team’s defense. Vogt has Kevin O’Connell taking center stage at QB yesterday. Christopher Price has O’Connell ready to take another step forward.
Farinella complains about Tom Brady speaking only to a team-run “media” outlet:
The quick Brady interview is another example of the Kraft organization’s growing inclination to sidestep traditional, non-affiliated media to produce “news” it can control and sanitize through its own outlets, which include the newspaper “Patriots Football Weekly,” the Webcasts under the “Patriots Today” label, television programming produced by the Kraft Group such as “Patriots All-Access” and “Totally Patriots,” and exclusive content to WEEI radio in which players and Coach Bill Belichick are contractually obligated to appear as live or phoned-in guests on WEEI programs.
Guregian’s notebook has Tom Brady saying that he feels great and is looking forward to getting on the field. The Globe notebook has more from Taylor and Brady. Farinella’s notebook has backup QB Kevin O’Connell talking to the media yesterday. Young’s Patriots journal has former Bears safety Brandon McGowan excited about getting a chance with the Patriots.
Mark Murphy has Doc Rivers talking about the end of the season for the Celtics, and what they need next year to get back on top. Buddy Thomas says that the best thing that could’ve happened to the Celtics was losing on Sunday night to the Magic. David Willis thinks that the Big 3 have another year in them. Patrick Gilroy says that there are plenty of decisions looming for the Celtics. Murphy’s notebook has the Kings adding Tom Thibodeau to their coaching search.
Michael Felger dumps all over the Celtics in his mailbag.