We’ve come to that stretch of calendar when three new seaons all get underway. Last week the B’s kicked off their regular season, and last night the C’s their exhibition season. Tonight, the Sox get working on their postseason, and that’s where we’ll start.
The Sox will take on the Los Angeles Angels as their ALDS gets underway out in Anaheim, and Extra Bases says that means Theo Epstein’s work is now done, with nothing left for him to do but scratch his lottery ticket.
Over The Monster finds eleven things he likes about the Angels, while Thanks For Playing cites ten reasons he hates them. Funny, Mike Scioscia even makes both lists and for pretty much the same reason!
Fire Brand of the American League analyzes every aspect of this series, with the bullpen as the X-factor tipped decidedly in Boston’s favor. Mazz says the Sox cannot forfeit their bullpen advantage if they hope to advance. Over on Boston Dirt Dogs, I’m not so sure the Sox can keep swiping the Angels’ hat year after year.
I’m Just Sayin’ doesn’t understand Jon Lester getting the Game 1 start over Josh Beckett given the latter’s storied postseason career, but The Bottom Line predicts Lester will look like the 2007 Beckett. Small White Ball takes Gary Tanguay to task for his analysis concluding that Beckett tanks after 200 innings.
Utility Lou says Daniel Bard’s ability to throw his slider for strikes will partially dictate Boston’s success. Toeing The Rubber is bummed that MDC was left off the ALDS roster. Fighting Words sees a postseason meltdown for Jonathan Papelbon . . . but not until he faces the Colorado Rockies in the World Series.
Looks like we won’t have Jason Varitek to kick around if the Angels run wild. Full Count has Varitek not sure when his next start is going to come. Michael Hurley has The Captain handling things with his usual class. Cameron Martin says the onus to control the Angels’ running game will be on the Sox pitching anyway. 38 Pitches thinks Jacoby Ellsbury is more dangerous than any Angels baserunner.
Circling The Bases is rethinking their preference for TBS’s MLB coverage over that of Fox after Chip Caray’s now infamous “line drive, base hit” call. Fack Youk admits to hardly listening to Caray, even after the announcer downplayed Brandon Inge’s game-saving play at third on tuesday night. Boston Sports Blog kills Caray over another huge on-air blunder last night.
The Pats’ 27-21 win over the Ravens last Sunday may have been their best of the year, but The Patriot Act was frustrated with the offense, as Tom Brady was reduced to a sidekick. The Boston Score has Brady’s QB sneak jump-starting the red zone offense. Basegirl was only too happy to miss all the commotion going on around Brady’s knees. Pats Chowder knew Rodney Harrison was joking all along, but thinks QBs are getting some soft treatment.
Sure, Laurence Maroney may have come up three carries and four yards short of a double-double against the Ravens, but One If By Land says the O-Line is not putting him in a position to succeed. Blaug awards his offensive game ball to a RB but surprisingly, it wasn’t Maroney.
By waxing romantic about the Pats’ reborn defense, PatsFans is this week’s poster child for why you don’t take your wife to a football game. Michael Felger calls the defense good and Leigh Bodden’s interception “lovely,” which is probably why his wife doesn’t take him to a football game.
First and Ten From Foxborough has Sunday’s win moving Belichick into third in all-time winnning percentage, at least for the time being. Pats Pulpit wonders where all the Josh McDaniels bashers have gone.
4Sport Boston premiers this season’s Five Minute Major with a look at the B’s Jekyll-and-Hyde start.
Hub Hockey wonders whether the B’s overpaid Milan Lucic in his recent three-year contract extension. Something’s Bruin is happy to have the heart and soul of the B’s sticking around for a while. Kathryn Tappen can now enjoy another three years’ worth of osso buco with the Looch.
Big Bad Blog updates us on the intriguing world of NHLPA politics as Mark Stuart becomes the new B’s player-rep. The Hockey News says Andrew Ference stepped down from the post in order to avoid the off-ice embarrassment of an overthrow.
Stanley Cup Of Chowder says team enforcer Shawn Thornton could be pressed into service when the Anaheim Ducks come to town tonight.
The road to Number 18 started off on the wrong foot in Hidalgo last night, as the C’s opened their exhibition season with a 96-90 loss to Houston. Boston Sports Nation is excited about preseason, but he doesn’t want to see anyone actually play until the real games begin on October 27. Celtics 17 has Ray Allen aspiring to be in the best shape of his career, but Celtics Hub says the C’s look like they’re playing the wrong sport. Rich Levine says it’s finally time to take the veil off The Knee. And Red’s Army likes what they saw from Marquis Daniels at the point.
Green Street has the C’s as the NBA’s best defensive team according to GMs, but that’s not going to be good enough to win it all.
There’s sure no shortage of events to watch these days, and that includes Jim and Pam’s wedding on The Office tonight. Enjoy them all, and go Lester! See you next week.