John Farrell Impresses In Introduction, Now Has Plenty Of Work To Get To

The Red Sox formally introduced John Farrell as their 46th manager in team history yesterday, and if there was one takeaway from the day – including the press conference and the numerous on-air and print interviews Farrell did – it is that he couldn’t be more unlike his immediate predecessor.

Speaking of which, Bobby Valentine appeared on Costas Tonight on the NBC Sports Network to give his first extended interview since being fired by the Red Sox the day after the season ended. In the interview, Valentine was critical of one of the only players to actually defend him this season, David Ortiz, saying that the DH essentially quit on the team. Rob Bradford says that Valentine needs to check his facts on many things he said.

I had to laugh yesterday afternoon when Glenn Ordway, attempting to throw a wet blanket on any good feelings about the hire, stated that the fans all loved the hiring of Valentine last season and were excited after his introduction as well. I know Glenn doesn’t leave the comfort of his state of the art home theater all that much, but he couldn’t be more out of touch on that one. To his credit, Michael Holley jumped on the statement immediately, quipping that the hire was only popular in the Lucchino household.

Mike Mutnansky and Lou Merloni did a nice job with their interview with Farrell, which was the first on-air one after the press conference. They asked him about Terry Francona, and Farrell said that he had been in contact with his former boss, who gave him his “blessing” to take the job.

John Farrell has big plans for Red Sox – Peter Abraham has Farrell coming in knowing that there is work to be done.

When pressed, John Farrell has answers – Chad Finn looks at the responses Farrell gave to many questions yesterday, and how different it was from what we saw a year ago.

John Farrell quick to credit 1st big league manager – Steve Buckley looks at how the 1988 Indians were a breeding ground for future managers under Doc Edwards.

Farrell should be the fix Sox organization needs – Sean McAdam says that Farrell’s background as both a pitching coach and a farm director will help the Red Sox.

Common ground – Christopher Smith says that Farrell’s experience will make for a smooth relationship with the front office.

Tall task ahead for Farrell – Jon Couture says that Farrell will not matter if the quality of the players on the roster is not improved.

Red Sox looking for turnaround – Gordon Edes has the Red Sox thinking they can content in 2013, but realize they have a lot of work to do.

Experience should help John Farrell – John Tomase says that two years in Toronto, regardless of results, were a learning experience that Farrell can draw on.

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Adam Pellerin, Jamie Erdahl to Join NESN as On-Air Anchor-Reporters – NESN announced two hires yesterday.


Bird’s Rookie Year – Game Six vs Spurs

Justin Barrasso will be perusing the box scores of the Boston Celtics during the Larry Bird years, starting with Bird’s rookie year in 1979-1980. The opportunity to reconnect with the Bird era is always fun, especially during his early years in the league. We’ll be posting the box score as well as some commentary each game day as we re-visit the ’79-’80 season. Enjoy.

Celtics (4-1) vs. Spurs (2-2)
Tuesday, October 23

The San Antonio Spurs, another hold-over from the ABA, transitioned more much successfully to the NBA than the Pacers.  A year removed from a 48-34 record and trip to the Eastern Conference Finals (they wouldn’t move to the West until 1982), the Spurs featured the explosive George Gervin, who averaged an incredible 33.1 points that season.

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Wrapping up Patriots-Jets, new era for Sox starts today

Although it wasn’t pretty, a win is a win, and the Patriots are now in first place in the AFC East despite having many flaws. The main concern for me surprisingly is not the secondary, it’s the offenses inability to close out games. For the third time in six games, the Patriots blew a two possession lead in the fourth quarter. In each of these  games the offense has had the chance to first make it a three possession game over the course of the game, and then having possession of the ball with around five minutes to play and a one possession lead, but have given the ball right back to their opponent fairly quickly, failing to produce a good drive when it matters most.

There is no question the secondary is bad, but there isn’t going to be a drastic turnaround. On the other hand, the offense is one of the most prolific in the league. There is no excuse for failing to put teams away, and struggling with their four-minute offense. A lot of this has to with the Patriots not having an idenity on offense. Tom Brady was asked about it and he said he didn’t really know either. This is not good when it’s Week 6 and you still don’t know your idenity on offense. The Patriots are messing too much with the run. They are a built to be a passing offense. Line up four or five wide with Brady in the shotgun and let him pick defenses apart, stop messing with a running game, especially in key situations.

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It’s their biggest concern– Shalise Manza Young says giving up big plays is the biggest issue for the Patriots.

Patriot report card– Ron Borges hands out his grades for Week 7.

Patriots must keep pace fast– Jeff Howe says the team is at their best in the no-huddle.

McDaniels keeps seeking consistency– Tom E. Curran looks at the Patriots offensive play-calling.

The Red Sox are set to introduce their new manager John Farrell today with a press conference at Fenway scheduled for Noon. Unlike last year, the Red Sox got their number one choice. Only time will tell if it was the correct move, and the organization better hope it was because they certainly passed on some very worthy candidates. For the record, I do believe Farrell was the right guy for the job as he has the ability to change the pitching staff around, which is the key to the 2013 Red Sox.

John Farrell isn’t more pf the same for Sox– Chad Finn has the Farrell hiring being the right move.

Best job ever– Gerry Callahan says Farrell cannot do any worse than the job Bobby Valentine did.

No comes hard part for Red Sox– Peter Abraham looks at hardest part of the off-season being rebuilding the team.

Red Sox can expect Farrell to understand team, city– Sean McAdam has Farrell’s familiarity with Boston will do him well.

Pitching Farrell: New manager’s most pressing task is obvious– Alex Speier says Farrell will need to turnaround the teams’ pitching staff right away.

Patriots Suffer Worst Win of Brady/Belichick Era, Sox Get Their Man

The Patriots did manage to win the football game yesterday, though it surely won’t seem like it for much of this week, as once again they couldn’t hold onto a fourth quarter lead, and instead appeared to hand the game to the New York Jets when Devin McCourty fumbled a kickoff return with two minutes remaining. The Patriots managed to rally, getting a game-tying field goal from Stephen Gostkowski as time expired in regulation, and a game winning field goal in overtime (do those count as “clutch” kicks, or not?) and the defense made a big play in overtime to seal the game for the Patriots.

This team has some prominent flaws, and at times you scratch your head at the play calling (I don’t know about you, but I didn’t anticipate pining for the days of Bill O’Brien – and that’s no knock on O’Brien.) and execution, but in the end they got the win, an important division win, and that’s the most important thing at this point.

Don’t Let the W Fool You – Bill Barnwell disagrees, saying that if you’re a Patriots fan, you are required to panic right now. Thanks, I’ll hold off on that.

Win over Jets exposes flaw Pats will need to overcome – Tom E Curran says that what the Jets were able to do yesterday should be of concern.

Patriots defense still a concern – Even the steady Mike Reiss can hardly contain his fret over the Patriots defensive woes.

Late execution is killing them – On the other side of the ball, Greg A Bedard says that the four-minute offense needs to improve for the Patriots.

Clutch beats good every time – If you’re looking for a positive, Bill Burt notes that while the Patriots weren’t very good yesterday, they were clutch, and clutch is what wins Super Bowls.

What we learned Sunday: A win is a win, but questions remain – Christopher Price looks beyond the easy takeaways at a few deeper points we can glean from this game.

Thankfully, this is a Red Sox town. (or so I’m told repeatedly.) Instead of hearing endlessly about the Patriots fatal flaws, we’ll hear about the Red Sox new manager, and the rebuilding project Ben Cherington faces this offseason. Right?

Late Saturday night, news broke that the Red Sox and Blue Jays had come to an agreement to allow John Farrell to come to Boston to manage the Red Sox.

While some seem to be down on this move, (Nick Cafardo is heartbroken) I’ve got no problem with it all. If you want any shot of unity in the clubhouse, you need to have it between the manager and front office. Farrell is a smart guy who was worked in both the front office and on the field, and from all accounts commands respect.

I don’t think the Red Sox are going to turn around immediately. Right now this is a team and organization stripped of talent. Their biggest advantage is money, and while there aren’t the type of franchise free agents out there this offseason that can make a team – and haven’t we seen that might not be the way to go anyway – the franchise has the ability to make moves by taking on salary in trades.

Ben Cherington’s neck is on the line – Gordon Edes says that now that Farrell is in the fold, the GM has to deliver.

Pitching Farrell: New manager’s most pressing task is obvious – Alex Speier looks at job #1 for John Farrell as he takes over the Red Sox.

Jays GM no fan of Red Sox games – Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos isn’t happy with the leaks to the media that he feels the Red Sox put out there to gain an advantage in the Farrell talks.

The Celtics wrapped up their preseason schedule, and now prepare to face Ray Allen (who seemingly won’t stop talking about how the Celtics disrespected and evicted him) and the Heat next week in the season opener.

Sizing up the C’s at the end of the preseason – A. Sherrod Blakely looks at where the Celtics stand.

Meet the new and improved Jeff Green – Paul Flanney looks at the impressive preseason by the Celtics forward.

Bird’s Rookie Year – Game Five vs Pacers

Justin Barrasso will be perusing the box scores of the Boston Celtics during the Larry Bird years, starting with Bird’s rookie year in 1979-1980. The opportunity to reconnect with the Bird era is always fun, especially during his early years in the league. We’ll be posting the box score as well as some commentary each game day as we re-visit the ’79-’80 season. Enjoy.

Celtics (4-0) vs. Pacers (2-3)
Saturday, October 20
Market Square Arena

In 1979, the Indiana Pacers were still a relative newcomer to the National Basketball Association.  Entering just their fourth season since the NBA merged with the American Basketball Association, the one-time ABA stalwart was still in search of its first winning season in the NBA.  The Pacers were one of two teams, along with the Kentucky Colonels, who were able to stay in existence for all nine ABA seasons (1967-1976) without folding, relocating, or changing team names.  This is particularly impressive considering that the Pacers are still in operation.

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Bird’s Rookie Year – Game Four vs Bullets

We’re always looking to add to the site here at BSMW, and I am hopeful you enjoy this new feature. Justin Barrasso will be perusing the box scores of the Boston Celtics during the Larry Bird years, starting with Bird’s rookie year in 1979-1980. The opportunity to reconnect with the Bird era is always fun, especially during his early years in the league. We’ll be posting the box score as well as some commentary each game day as we re-visit the ’79-’80 season. Enjoy.

Celtics (3-0) vs. Bullets (1-2)
Friday, October 19
Boston Garden

The Celtics, wrapping up a brief two game homestand (and having played three of their opening four at the Garden), faced off against the Washington Bullets on this Friday night thirty-three years ago on 150 Causeway Street.

The Bullets were among the finalists for the Eastern Conference’s Team of the Decade in the ‘70s, appearing in four NBA Finals and winning one.  They won the East (as Baltimore) in ’71, then again as Washington in ’75.  Washington broke through and won the championship in ’78, but lost in a Finals rematch to the Super Sonics in ’79.

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