Weekend Watch – The Open Edition

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The Open Championship headlines this weekend’s sports viewing. TNT has the early morning coverage both days this weekend, with ABC taking over two hours later.

The weekend also sees the US debut of David Beckham, when he dons the uniform of the Los Angeles Galaxy in an exhibition against the against English Chelsea FC, which won the English Premier League in two of the last three seasons. The match will be aired on ESPN Saturday night at 8:30. However an ankle injury suffered by Beckham could limit his playing time to about 15 minutes or so.

It’s a battle of the Sox at Fenway this weekend. FOX has Saturday’s game between the Red Sox and White Sox, Thom Brennaman and Joe Girardi will have the call of that game. Keep up with the Red Sox coverage this weekend on RedSoxLinks.com.

It’s possible that this weekend could also see Barry Bonds tying or breaking Hank Aaron’s home run record. The Giants are appropriately enough in Milwaukee this weekend, both Bud Selig’s hometown and the city where Aaron played 14 of his 23 season. Most still feel that the Giants will manipulate things so that the record is broken in San Francisco, but FOX will still show Bonds’ at-bats live on Saturday in a split screen. Ken Rosenthal is also in Milwaukee for the weekend. If Bonds is on the verge of breaking the record on the other days of this weekend, ESPN will cut to the at-bats.

890 ESPN is rolling out a new Sunday program, the Baseline Report which will air from 10:00-11:00am. Former major leaguer Mike Pagliarulo co-hosts with Adam White, and they promise “a very candid, hard-hitting evaluation of players and front office personnel from a player’s standpoint.”

A pair of TNT announcers had very different opinions on the Thursday telecast about the accusations by Gary Player that professional golfers are using performance-enhancing drugs. Here’s what Bobby Clampett said:

Gary (Player's) got so much integrity, he speaks from the heart. As a player, it saddens me that these kinds of reports would be coming out. This is a game of integrity that we have enjoyed being free of any of these kinds of allegations in the history of the game. It looks like we might have to move into drug testing of players, that saddens me.

And here is Peter Alliss’ take on the comments:

I have no idea (what prompted Gary Player’s statement) unless he needed the publicity. I don’t know why he waited until he was 70-odd years of age to come out with it and then not tell us who it is. Just taking a stick and stirring a muddy pond for no reason, it’s very stupid.

Murray Weiss has the HUGE story of an NBA referee being investigated for allegedly betting on basketball games over the last two season, including games in which he worked. You can bet this will take some attention off of Michael Vick and his problems. (Jackie MacMullan says the official is 13 year veteran Tim Donaghy)

Joe Haggerty has Peter Gammons’ comments on Craig Hansen from his appearance on 890 ESPN this week, where Gammons says that Scott Boras’ coaching staff has completely changed Hansen’s delivery from what it was a St John’s and blames this for his struggles in the minors.

Jessica Camerato has a Celtics summer league recap.

The Media Circus confirms for us that Steve Phillips is unequivocally an idiot.

Three more Patriots positional previews today, Mike Reiss has the linebackers, Albert Breer the receivers and Erik Scalavino the cornerbacks.

Pat Kirwan notes that the Patriots have loaded up on experience this offseason, which he says fits in very well with the Bill Belichick/Scott Pioli method of doing business.

Don Pierson thinks that only the Patriots can beat the Patriots.

Dave Hollander talks to Frank Deford about his new book The Entitled. The interview starts off with a few thoughts on the state of sports media today.

Chad Finn has his Nine Innings national column for FoxSports, complete with a baseball card of Tim McCarver as a member of the Red Sox.

Dan Lamothe is disappointed with the Inside Track.

Paul Gardner says that the David Beckham hype is very much like the hype when Pelé joined the New York Cosmos.

Weekend Highlights

7:00pm, NESN – White Sox @ Red Sox

7:00am, TNT – British Open
8:00am, Versus – Tour De France
9:00am, ABC – British Open
3:30pm, FOX – White Sox @ Red Sox
8:30pm, ESPN – Chelsea FC @ Los Angeles (Beckham debut)
8:30pm, ESPN2 – Busch Series: Gateway 250

6:00am, TNT – British Open
8:00am, ABC – British Open
8:00am, Versus – Tour De France
2:00pm, NESN – White Sox @ Red Sox
4:00pm, TV38 – Dynamo @ Revolution
8:00pm, ESPN – Cardinals @ Braves

New England
David Scott is back, with a look at all that has been going on this summer in the world of Boston sports media, from Jason Wolfe’s embarrassments, to NESN making a mistake by dumping Dale Arnold, the Globe’s attempts at create Boston’s version of PTI, and Bill Simmons declaring himself still in the race for President of Red Sox Nation after all. Susan Bickelhaupt has a look at ABC’s coverage of The (British) Open this weekend. Bill Doyle has more on ESPN/ABC putting its own stamp on their coverage of The Open Championship.

New York
Phil Mushnick has Joe Morgan’s untrue story on Sunday Night Baseball last week as just the latest example of how ESPN is killing sports for viewers. Neil Best says that ESPN’s Who’s Nowis definitely not must-see TV. He also offers tips for watching SportsCenter. Bob Raissman says that the Michael Vick story will be a costly one for the NFL and its TV partners. Richard Sandomir looks at the coincidence that Barry Bonds could be going for the all time home run record this weekend, in Milwaukee, where Hank Aaron spent much of his career with the Braves and Brewers.

Mid Atlantic
Michael Hiestand says that NBC and FOX are both destinations that make sense for Dan Patrick in the future. Laura Nachman has Sports Radio 950-AM looking to increase local programming. With the Michael Vick case everywhere, Jim Williams asks if the media has learned anything from the Duke lacrosse case. Chris Zelkovich notes that amateur sports, even to the level of the Pan Am Games, are getting virtually no airtime. Williams also talks to Sirius Radio’s Giorgio Chinaglia about David Beckham’s potential impact on US Soccer.

Dave Darling has a whole cornucopia of information about ESPN, including a look at the network finally getting around to devoting a daily highlight show to college football. Barry Jackson has the Dolphins media coverage getting an upgrade with revamped shows. He also reports that former Dolphins Rob Konrad and Keith Byars are not being retained by 790 The Ticket. David Barron has Chronicle columnist Richard Justice joining Houston’s newest sports talk station, KILE (1560 AM) this summer. Barry Horn has the All Star ratings hitting new lows.

Teddy Greenstein has NFL photographers from several prominent newspapers considering boycotting NFL games this fall because of a league edict that would require them to wear red vests with prominent product logos. Bob Wolfley has SportsCenter anchor John Anderson – a Green Bay native talking about his family history related to the Packers. Judd Zulgad examines a report that ran Wednesday night on KSTP-TV’s news which “painted a rather unflattering picture — literally — of various Gophers football players who have Internet pages on MySpace and Facebook.”

West Coast
Larry Stewart covers a number of items in his column this week, starting off with this weekend’s coverage of The British Open. Tom Hoffarth wonders if David Beckham will be able to carry ESPN’s soccer coverage, even with a bad ankle. His media blog delves even deeper into Beckham. John Maffei says that Beckham’s US debut is the “equivalent of Babe Ruth coming back from the dead to play right field for the New York Yankees.” Jim Carlisle says that The Open being played at Carnoustie brings back memories of Jean Van de Velde’s 1999 meltdown. Jay Posner has channel 4 covering more than just the Padres these days, and a number of other media notes.


Weekend Watch – ESPY’s Edition

Note: The messageboard is back online…

Also, Eric McHugh reports this morning that the Patriots and Asante Samuel could be closer to getting a long term deal done before Monday’s deadline.

With the All Star break behind us, summer is in full swing, and the standings become ever more important. The Blue Jays are in town this weekend, hoping to cut into the Red Sox massive AL East lead. Julian Tavarez goes on Friday night, Daisuke Matsuzaka on Saturday and Josh Beckett on Sunday for the Red Sox.

Even though it is the middle of summer, there is still a variety of sports on the airwaves. There are two Celtics summer league games on FSN, Saturday features the AFL conference finals on ESPN, there is the John Deere classic on CBS both days this weekend and Sunday night features the ESPY Awards at 9:00.

Keep up with all the Red Sox coverage this weekend over at RedSoxLinks.com. Check in with the Celtics in Las Vegas at CelticsLinks.com.

Peter Gammons and Curt Schilling have quite a little feud going. On his weekly 890 ESPN Boston appearance this week, Gammons uncharacteristically struck back at a player, stating that if Schilling thinks that his unwillingness to work out in the offseason has nothing to do with the Red Sox hesitation to give him a new contract, he’s in fantasyland. He also said that Schilling thinks he knows more than the doctors when it comes to medical conditions, and pointed out that his ERA has been 4.43 since the end of the 2004 season, so he has not been the top-of-the-rotation guy that he wants to be paid as.

Mike Holbrook says that the Patriots and Jets are head and shoulders above the Dolphins and Bills in the AFC East.

Chad Finn thinks that Manny Ramirez should drop the hustle and just go back to Manny being Manny.

Matt Casey has the All-Star team, movie edition.

The Media Circus has all that was wrong with the All Star Game coverage.

Sean McAdam says that pitching makes the NL West competitive.

ESPN has an AFC Team-by-Team training camp guide.

Clark Judge has 12 NFL preseason games worth checking out.

Adrian Wojnarowski says that Michael Jordan’s executive legacy is on the line in Charlotte.

BostonSportz says that ESPN’s Who’s Now Doesn’t Like Boston.

A pair of new books from the gang at Maple Street Press crossed my desk this week, the first is the Maple Street Press Guide to New England Ballparks: From Maine to Fenway to the Cape . . . and Everything in Between. It is exactly what it says it is. 250 pages of the history, ambiance and surroundings of the baseball stadiums of New England.

The second is The Ultimate Red Sox Companion: A Complete Statistical and Reference Guide, which is 400 pages of every Red Sox stat and fact you could possibly need. Stats for every player who has ever put on a Red Sox uniform is in here, as well as in-depth examinations of every year the Sox appeared in the playoffs, and all the team’s transactions and draft picks.

Also, you might have noticed an addition to the left hand sidebar of this site, a bit down on the page. It is a list of Boston sports books, and allows you to rank them. I encourage everyone to contribute to the voting, and you can even add in books that aren’t there which you think should be included in the list.

Weekend Highlights


7:00pm, NESN – Blue Jays @ Red Sox
7:30pm, TBS – Pirates @ Braves
8:00pm, FSN – Las Vegas Summer League: Celtics vs. Bucks


1:00pm, ESPN – AFL Conference Final – Columbus at Georgia
3:00pm, CBS – John Deere Classic
3:00pm, ABC – Busch Series: USG Durock 300
3:30pm, FOX – Cardinals @ Phillies
4:00pm, FSN – Las Vegas Summer League – Celtics vs. Knicks
4:00pm, ESPN – AFL Conference Final – Chicago at San Jose
7:00pm, NESN – Red Sox @ Blue Jays
7:30pm, ESPN – IRL: Firestone IndyCar 200

1:00pm, TBS – Pirates @ Braves
2:00pm, NESN – Blue Jays @ Red Sox
3:00pm, CBS – John Deere Classic
4:00pm, TNT – Nextel Cup: USG Sheetrock 400
6:00pm, ESPN – Cardinals @ Phillies
9:00pm, ESPN – ESPY Awards

Here are links to five sites that are doing the whole “Media Watch” theme:

Sports Media Watch – an often updated look at the latest ratings and news in the sports media world.

Sports Media Journal – “a site where you’ll find out more about the people and organizations that manage and report sports.”

The Starting Five They state: “We are scrupulous in our reporting of sports-related topics and subject matter; we source actual people; we reference actual publications. We relate the truth as it finds us, not as we want it to be.”

Awful Announcing: “Putting announcers on notice since 2006.”

Call of the Game – “The industry resource for sports broadcasting news, jobs and discussion, since 2001.”

New England and New York
Susan Bickelhaupt has Dan Patrick addressing his departure from ESPN and talking about his new show with the Content Factory. Bill Doyle has a pair of hockey voices in Dale Arnold (Boston Bruins) and Jamie Smock (Worcester Sharks) getting silenced this week. Bruce Allen (that’s me) wonders why we don’t seem to hate Barry Bonds as much as we’re told that we should. With Ralph Kiner night scheduled at Shea Stadium for Saturday night, Phil Mushnick and Richard Sandomir remember the legendary Mets announcer for more than just his work in the booth, they look at his career as a Pirates (mostly) slugger and GM of the San Diego Padres of the Pacific Coast League. Bob Raissman asserts that Bud Selig is not torn about being in attendance for Barry Bonds’ record breaking home run, he’s simply doing what he always does – make himself the story. Neil Best talks to Keith Hernandez about winning the inaugural Mustache Madness contest.

Michael Hiestand has CBS offering viewers a look inside the production truck for this weekend’s John Deere Classic. Leonard Shapiro says that HBO’s Brooklyn Dodgers: The Ghosts of Flatbush brings back some strong memories, 50 years after the Dodger left Brooklyn. Bob Smizik has FSN Pittsburgh doing away with Pittsburgh Sports Tonight and carrying wrapup shows only after Pirates or Penguins games. Laura Nachman has former Eagles linebacker Garry “G” Cobb tackling a number of multimedia projects. Michael McCarthy has the networks taking bold steps to bring viewers where they haven’t been before. Chris Zelkovich has sports talk radio doing surprisingly well on TV with Rogers Sportsnet. Jim Williams talks to Tour De France analyst Phil Liggett and Gol TV Analyst Ray Hudson.

Barry Jackson has some Miami sports media talent shifting around the airwaves. Dave Darling polls some local sports personalities about the top event they’ve witnessed. David Barron has Lance Zierlein trying to find a way back onto the air. Barry Horn says that Barry Bonds will be sports’ biggest newsmaker during the summer of ’07.

Teddy Greenstein talks to the woman who some refer to as “he Barbara Walters of NASCAR” – Wendy Venturini. With the Brewers enjoying their best season in years, Bob Wolfley reports on radio station WSSP-AM adding a new show on the team. Judd Zulgad says that the firing of a Clear Channel executive could disrupt renegotiation talks with popular KFAN afternoon-drive host Dan Barreiro. Dan Caesar looks at the launch of a new magazine covering St. Louis sports. Jeffrey Flanagan says that the Nashville Predators won’t be moving to Kansas City without a fight.

West Coast
Larry Stewart points out that “Sometimes lost among all the laughs, the tears, the glory for the honorees and the self-promotion for ESPN is the good that the ESPYs do.” Tom Hoffarth has a couple of announcers, including Vin Scully, talking about how they would call the Barry Bonds record breaking home run. Stewart’s notebook has Dan Patrick joining a new broadcasting venture, while Hoffarth’s blog has photos from the red carpet of the ESPY’s. John Maffei says that ESPN, with all their gimmicks, is going to miss the straight-shooting Patrick. Jim Carlisle reports on ESPN being punished at the All Star game.

On Friday, July 13th WGAM (900-AM in Nashua, 1250-AM in Manchester, online at wgamradio.com) listeners will have the opportunity to bid on an autographed pitching rubber signed by Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon.

All proceeds from this auction will go towards the C2 Mission.

The C2 Mission is a Foundation created to benefit children and families affected by Cerebral Palsy and Cystic Fibrosis. The C2 Mission is run and operated by Jon and Lauren Goode.

Their “Pick me Up” programs have become a huge part of C2 Mission.

Past pick me ups have included a special birthday party for a little boy who turned five. What was special about his birthday party was it was the first birthday party he ever received because his family could never afford one because of medical expenses. It was a birthday party for the ages with a hall for his entire family, caricatures, balloon animals and of course a Blues Clues Birthday cake.

Other pick-me-up’s have been sending two families to Disney World, paying bills, providing therapeutic horse riding lessons, concerts, camps and much more. The money raised through the C2 Mission has a direct impact on families right here in the area affected by CF and CP.

You can find out more about this great cause at http://www.C2Mission.org.

They will start the bidding beginning at 3PM on Friday, July 13th. You can call 603-886-9276 to bid.

Red Sox/Tigers Top Hot Summer Weekend

Two of the top teams in the American League this season hook up this weekend in the final series before the All Star break. The Red Sox and Tigers meet up in Comerica Park (not in New York) for a three game series between potential playoff opponents.

Julian Tavarez, Kason Gabbard and Daisuke Matsuzaka will pitch the three games for the Red Sox and will be opposed by Andrew Miller, Jeremy Bonderman and Nate Robertson.

You can keep up with the action this weekend with the help of RedSoxLinks.com and the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit News.

Those looking to get a look at Celtics second round draft picks Gabe Pruitt and Glen Davis will be able to see the youngsters as well as several other holdovers from last season’s roster, including Gerald Green, Rajon Rondo, Leon Powe and Allan Ray on FSN’s broadcasts of the Celtics summer league games from Las Vegas starting tonight at 10:00.

Tonight’s game might be a little tough to watch, as it is against Greg Oden and the Portland Trailblazers…Mike Gorman will be reporting from Las Vegas each night on Mohegan Sun Sports Tonight. Keep up with the coverage on CelticsLinks.com.

Weekend Viewing Highlights:

7:00pm, NESN – Red Sox @ Tigers
10:00pm, FSN – Celtics/Blazers – Las Vegas Summer League

9:00am, NBC – Wimbledon Women’s Final
3:30pm, FOX – Angels @ Yankees
7:00pm, NESN – Red Sox @ Tigers
7:30pm, TV-38 – CD Chivas USA at Revolution
8:00pm, TNT – Nextel Cup: Pepsi 400

9:00am, NBC – Wimbledon’s Men’s Final
1:00pm, NESN – Red Sox @ Tigers
8:00pm, ESPN – Braves @ Padres

Boston will be featured on July 12th as part of ESPNEWS six week summer series City by City.

City by City will take fans down memory lane to relive some of the biggest moments in each city’s sports history,” said Barry Sacks, senior coordinating producer, ESPN Studio Production. “Whether it is the Red Sox reversing the curse, Texas’ thrilling comeback in the Rose Bowl over USC or Peyton Manning and the Colts winning the Super Bowl, ESPNEWS understands the passionate rooting interests fans have for their local pro and college teams. City by City will capture the experience of what it means to be a sports fan in one of these cities.”

Highlights of the ESPNEWS City by City series:

  • Daily feature segments highlighting great sports moments each city’s history;
  • Profiles of the city’s top athletes, pro and college teams;
  • Interviews with sports personality, celebrities from the city;
  • Roundup interviews with a leading sports journalist from each city to provide fans with context of each city’s sporting past, its present and future opportunities and challenges.

David Scott reports on NESN’s announcement that Jack Edwards will be calling all the Bruins games this season, leaving Dale Arnold out of the role he’s described as his dream job.

Richard Deitsch and Sports Illustrated have a look at the best-ever athletes by each uniform number.

Gordon Edes checks in with an edition of the Ask Edes Red Sox mailbag.

Chad Finn has a midseason Red Sox report card.

Earlier in the week, Bill Burt wrote a strong column stating that Michael Wilbon was a “jerk” for comments he made about the racial climate in Boston. Last night, Burt apologized for calling Wilbon a jerk, saying that the comment was over the top.

How can Houston have FOUR sports radio stations, when Boston can’t come up with a real viable alternative to WEEI?

The Media Circus has some harsh words for former Globe writer Michael Smith’s fill-in performance on Jim Rome is Burning.

Pat Imig has a media critique of the Chris Benoit coverage on the cable news shows.

Dr. Z’s Mailbag this week continues the discussion on benefits for retired NFL players. Randy Moss’ name somehow comes into the mix.

Scott Miller has his Anti-All Stars, of which Julio Lugo is the starting shortstop.

Tony Massarotti hands out some NL midseason awards.

Mike Freeman is worried for Barry Bonds’ safety.

Sports Media Columns From Around the Country

New England
Susan Bickelhaupt looks ahead to the All Star game, in which a lot of chatter will be focused on Barry Bonds and his assault on the all time home run record. She also has a bit from Red Sox fan Oliver Platt, who is playing George Steinbrenner in the ESPN mini-series The Bronx is Burning which debuts on Monday. Bill Doyle has the Ray Allen trade getting the approval of the Celtics TV crew.

New York
Phil Mushnick would apparently rather prep for a colonoscopy than be subjected to listening to John Sterling’s “It is high! . . . It is far! . . .” calls for yet another warning track fly ball. Sounds like the complaint that Boston fans had for Jerry Trupiano’s “Way Back…” calls of the last few years….Richard Sandomir looks at the contestants who spent their 4th of July shoving hotdogs and buns down their throats for the “greater glory of gross intemperance” in the Nathan’s Famous hot dog eating contest. Neil Best is still on vacation, but still filling up his blog. Yesterday he had a couple of interesting notes about MLB putting some sanctions on ESPN for reporting the All-Star selections last Saturday afternoon when TBS had the rights to do so with a special show scheduled that night.

More East Coast
Michael Hiestand has a look at Bud Collins’ long run with NBC at Wimbledon, which will come to an end with this year’s tournament. Leonard Shapiro has more on Collins’ last Breakfast at Wimbledon. Laura Nachman has Philadelphia native (and high school tennis star) Chris McKendry in her element as the host of the Wimbledon evening highlights show on ESPN2.Jim Williams has Maryland basketball coach Gary Williams serving as a golf analyst for Comcast SportNet’s coverage of the AT&T National. Williams’ Watch This! blog has John McEnroe talking about Wimbledon. Bob Smizik reports on the gloves coming off and getting personal during a discussion of the Pirates fan walkout on KDKA’s “Sports Showdown” Sunday night. Chris Zelkovich says that we’ll be getting a lot more Barry Bonds this week…just what we need.

Dave Darling has a look at the pair of baseball films that debut this week, ESPN’s The Bronx is Burning (Monday) and HBO’s Brooklyn Dodgers: The Ghosts of Flatbush (Wednesday). Barry Jackson reports on the battle between ESPN and FOX to be able to show Barry Bond’s 756 home run live. He also talks to Sid Rosenberg, who shifts to mornings beginning Monday on 790 The Ticket. Rick Harmon notes that Tampa will be featured on August 16th as part of ESPNews six-week “City by City” summer series. David Barron talks to a pair of Texans who were part of the original crew for the grand experiment that was WFAN, America’s first all-sports radio station.

Teddy Greenstein reported earlier this week that ESPN could be losing Dan Patrick. He has a short update on the situation in the middle of today’s column, in which Mark Grace throws his support behind Mark Buehrle’s demand for a no-trade clause. Bob Wolfley has Joe Buck saying that the NL Central race will shake out between the Brewers and Cubs. Judd Zulgad notes that the Twins on-field struggles this season have not hurt their TV ratings. Dan Caesar has St. Louisan Dan Nassif hoping to cash in big once again at the World Series of Poker.

West Coast
Larry Stewart has a further look at the two-hour HBO documentary on the Brooklyn Dodgers and their eventual move to Los Angeles. Stewart’s notebook has TNT showing commercials during this Saturday’s Pepsi 500, but never cutting away from the action. Jay Posner has FOX invading San Diego for the first time this season to take a peek at the Padres. Tom Hoffarth has a look at the difficulties some in the media might have in addressing “The Bonds Situation.” Hoffarth’s blog contains a number of other media notes for the week. John Maffei has more on the Padres getting some national attention this weekend after basically being shunned all season thus far. Jim Carlisle isn’t a fan of the arrangement that has the winning league in the All Star game getting home field advantage in the World Series, but notes that the FOX broadcasters, not surprisingly, do support the arrangement.

Weekend Watch – NHIS in the Spotlight

New Hampshire International Speedway is the center of the NASCAR world this weekend with the LENOX Industrial Tools 300 scheduled for Sunday afternoon at 1:00pm (TNT). The race will also see the debut of the #99 Red Sox car of Roush Fenway Racing. (There’s plenty more on the weekend at NHIS below.)

Both NBA & NHL free agency periods kick off this weekend…sort of. The NBA allows teams to negotiate with free agents, but cannot actually sign them until July 10th because of the Free Agency Moratorium when “the NBA and NBPA conducts an audit that assists in the determination of the new Salary Cap figure for the following season.” The NHL does not have that moratorium, and can announce deals immediately. Last year the Bruins made a huge splash on July 1st with the signing of Zdeno Chara.

Keep up with any news on the two winter teams at Celticslinks.com and Bruinslinks.com.

The Red Sox return to Fenway Park this weekend after two trips to the West coast in the month of June and badly in need of some home cooking. The Texas Rangers provide the opposition this weekend as they invade Fenway for a four game series. Keep up with the action at RedSoxLinks.com.


The Hartford Courant redesigned their web page this week, and at the same time made some rather unfortunate changes and cuts.

They will no longer be doing their own coverage of the New York Yankees, but instead will be running the stories that appear in New York Newsday. Since both papers are owned by the Tribune company, it was decided to save the money and not run separate coverage of the team. Reader Representative Karen Hunter explains in her blog:

Another reader called this morning to find out if The Courant had cut staff again and why AP stories were being used to report on the Yankees and Red Sox. I offered him the explanation Sports Editor Jeff Otterbein has provided: "Newsday is now covering the Yankees games stories. We have decided, since we also are a Tribune newspaper, to not duplicate efforts, thus freeing Dom [Amore] up to do many other types of stories in New York and Connecticut.”

That did not sit well with the gentleman. We discussed why it mattered whether a Newsday story or a Courant reporter covered the game as long as there was a story in the newspaper. He explained, "That is the one thing I really liked about your paper. The New Haven Register dropped its beat writers years ago and I didn't like that. That's why I started with The Courant. It's more personal. The beat writer is going to know a lot more inside information that I care about. I think it makes a difference. If you're going to do this with the NFL too, well, this is going to make me think very hard about canceling my subscription. I know it's a money thing, but sometimes you have to spend money for quality."

BSMW reader (And Red Sox fan) Tim chimes in:

But this is horrible news. The Courant has decided to run NY Newsday Yankee stories instead of having their own beat writer…removing Dom Amore, who I believe is 2nd in seniority when it comes to Yankee beat writers. I’ve long enjoyed his work; because even though he is an actual Yankee fan, he’s probably the best and most fair beat writer they have.

Later in the blog, Representative Hunter stated that “a Courant reporter would still be covering some of the Red Sox games.” (Emphasis mine)

Followup: I’m told that the Courant plans to cover all remaining Red Sox games this season, except for a 6 game West Coast road trip in August.

Here is a follow up in the Sunday Courant on dropping the Yankees coverage.

Bill Simmons has his annual NBA draft diary column.

Chris Mannix lists the Celtics as the top winners of draft night.

Charley Rosen says the Ray Allen trade is a steal for the Celtics.

Jack McCallum loves the deal for the Celtics.

King Kaufman, not so much.

Bill Barnwell tries to figure out what Patriots fans might be able to expect in terms of production from Wes Welker this season.

Pete Prisco examines the Hall of Fame chances of 45 current NFL stars. Brady, Bruschi, Harrison, Moss and Seymour (along with Adam Vinatieri) are all discussed.

Jesse Noyes looks at the Patriots “international marketing game plan, which stresses going long in China.”

Vic Carucci lists the Patriots among his most improved teams this offseason.

Is Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs interested in buying the Buffalo Bills?

Chad Finn checks in with Nine Innings for FoxSports.

Tom Curran notes that Roger Clemens’ return to the Yankees has not gone as planned.

Tony Massarotti picks the NL All Star team.

Sports Media Columns From Around the Country

New England
Susan Bickelhaupt has a number of media notes this week, including a look at the new ABC, ESPN and TNT television contract with the NBA. Bill Doyle in his “Tuning In” column this week, has a look at NESN’s Jayme Parker, who has been “flashing” listeners at WEEI. Tom King talks to Exeter, NH’s Jason Kosow, who pitches for the Nashua Pride, and played the role of Catfish Hunter in ESPN’s upcoming mini-series The Bronx is Burning.

New York
Phil Mushnick wonders if the Chris Benoit tragedy will finally wake up the media to the fact that Vince McMahon has been operating a death mill the past 25 years. Richard Sandomir notes that Brooklyn still has the Dodger blues, which will be stoked with HBO’s upcoming two-part documentary, Brooklyn Dodgers: The Ghosts of Flatbush, which will be broadcast July 11. Bob Raissman wonders what will happen to the YES ratings numbers if the Yankees continue to stumble along. Neil Best might be on vacation this week, but he just keeps filling his blog with entries.

More East Coast
Leonard Shapiro has Sam Huff coming back for a 35th season of analyzing Redskins games. Michael Hiestand has David Stern talking about television of the future in discussing the NBA’s new broadcast deal with ABC, ESPN and TNT. Laura Nachman has Jimmy Kimmel promising not to hold back at the ESPY’s, and she also has some awards you won’t see on the broadcast. Bob Smizik has FSN Pittsburgh saying that they won’t show a proposed fan walkout of Saturday’s Pirates game. Jim Williams has Cal Ripken Jr expressing some confidence for the Orioles future in a TBS conference call. Williams also has more on the new NBA TV deal in his Watch This! blog. Chris Zelkovich has 18 year CFL vet Danny McManus heading to the broadcast booth.

Dave Darling talks to Chris “Mad Dog” Russo about his Orlando roots as part of a look at WFAN’s 20th anniversary. David Barron has a look at Calvin Murphy returning to the Houston airwaves. Barry Jackson has 790 The Ticket moving Sid Rosenberg to mornings to replace Joe Rose, who is expected to join WQAM. He also has former Miami coach Larry Coker heading to ESPNU as an analyst. Barry Horn has Fran Fraschilla talking about the draft.

Judd Zulgad has a look at how important sourcing is on a hot topic story like the Kevin Garnett trade rumors, where several outlets might be reporting many different things. Teddy Greenstein has an update on the drama surrounding WMVP-AM’s franchise show, “Mac, Jurko & Harry.” Dan Caesar has Tim McKernan, who just left KFNS and his morning show “The Morning Grind,” weighing an offer from SportsNet New York. Bob Wolfley has ESPN’s Andy Katz getting it right with his call of Yi Jianlian being drafted by Milwaukee.

West Coast
Tom Hoffarth has a good look at WFAN marking their 20th anniversary of becoming the first radio station to go to an all-sports format. He also expands on the story even more in his blog, talking to WFAN’s Steve Somers for his thoughts on the anniversary. Jim Carlisle has Tony Gwynn and Cal Ripken saying that they have no problem with putting Barry Bonds on the NL All Star team. Carlisle’s notebook looks at some changes at Wimbledon. John Maffei looks at a few announcing gigs being filled in the San Diego market.

From TNT on this weekend’s coverage in New Hampshire:

This Sunday (July 1), TNT will provide exclusive coverage of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Racing from the New Hampshire Intl. Speedway with prerace coverage beginning at 1 p.m. ET, leading up to the green flag at 2:30 p.m. ET. The network’s pre-race coverage includes analyst Kyle Petty visiting the Victory Junction Gang Camp, which is located in the Piedmont Triad of North Carolina, and was created in memory of his son Adam. The racing-themed camp serves children with life threatening illnesses and health issues to give them a magical experience full of adventures while maintaining a medically-safe environment. Petty will discuss the camp and its impact on the many children and families that have attended it in the three years since it was founded by he and his wife Pattie.

Also on Sunday, TNT’s Pride of NASCAR series continues with a feature on ‘Gentleman Ned Jarrett,’ a two-time NASCAR Champion with 239 career wins. TNT’s Bill Weber spent a day walking the links with Jarrett as he reminisced about his illustrious career over a round of golf. Topics discussed included Jarrett’s “early” retirement from racing at age 34 in 1966, his second career as a pioneering NASCAR broadcaster, his family (including 1999 Cup Champion son, Dale Jarrett) and his youth in rural North Carolina. Jarrett also recounted his most memorable moment in racing – calling the 1993 Daytona 500 which was won by his son. Additional Pride of NASCAR pieces featuring legends David Pearson, Benny Parsons and Junior Johnson are available to view on TNT Inside Angle on NASCAR.COM and include additional excerpts from the interviews that have not been televised.

Multi-platinum selling rock band Hinder will set the stage on Sunday as they perform a live concert at the race track in Loudon, and TNT will be on hand to air a portion of the concert prior to race. Hinder will play songs from their Extreme Behavior album, including the hits Lips of an Angel and Better than Me as well as their remake of the rock classic Born to Be Wild, which serves as the 2007 NASCAR on TNT Summer Series anthem.

Pre-race coverage will also include a segment featuring NASCAR wives, girlfriends and moms who will dish the dirt on the NASCAR men in their lives, including wives Shana Mayfield (husband is driver Jeremy Mayfield), Kim Wallace (husband is driver Kenny Wallace), Michelle Gilliland (husband is driver David Gilliland), the girlfriend of Kyle Busch, Erica Dewey, and Ryan Newman’s mother. The network will also air footage from Ralph Sheheen’s night with the drivers from Roush Racing as they headed to Fenway Park for a Boston Red Sox game. In the last year, Roush Racing and the Fenway Sports Group formed Roush Fenway Racing.

TNT’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Racing from New Hampshire begins at 1 p.m. ET with NASCAR on TNT Live! and Allstate Countdown to Green featuring TNT announcers Marc Fein (host), Bill Weber (host and play-by-play announcer), Kyle Petty (analyst), Wally Dallenbach (analyst) and Larry McReynolds (analyst/reporter). The pit reporting crew of Marty Snider, Matt Yocum, Ralph Sheheen and Lindsay Czarniak will check in throughout pre-race coverage and during the race which revs up at 2:30 p.m. ET.

From ESPN on this weekend’s coverage in New Hampshire:

ESPN on ABC’s NASCAR Countdown will have a live preview at 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday of the NASCAR Busch Series Camping World 200 presented by RV.com at New Hampshire International Speedway. Brent Musburger will host NASCAR Countdown from the ESPN Pit Studio, while two-time NASCAR champion crew chief Tim Brewer will report from the ESPN Chevy Cutaway Car. Dale Jarrett, one of the founding drivers of the NASCAR Busch Series and the 1999 NASCAR Cup Series champion, will work in the ESPN booth as analyst for the telecast, joined by two-time NASCAR champion crew chief Andy Petree. Dr. Jerry Punch will handle play-by-play.

NASCAR Countdown will include segments from pit reporters Allen Bestwick, Dave Burns, Jamie Little and Mike Massaro as the NASCAR Busch Series makes its only appearance of 2007 at the 1.058-mile New England oval.

NASCAR Countdown will originate from the ESPN Pit Studio at New Hampshire International Speedway as it sets the stage for ESPN2’s coverage of the NASCAR Busch Series race Saturday. Highlights include:

Juan Pablo Montoya: Has he arrived?
NASCAR driver Juan Pablo Montoya won his first NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Race at Sonoma on June 24 – his second road course win of the season after taking the checkered flag in the NASCAR Busch Series race in March in Mexico City. ESPN pit reporter Mike Massaro will report on Montoya’s accomplishments this year and his return to the NASCAR Busch Series after a three-week break. Massaro will ask the questions, “What do these wins mean?” and “Has he ‘officially arrived’ or does he still need an ‘oval win’ to show he will be a NASCAR force?”

Aric Almirola and Denny Hamlin’s win at Milwaukee
Last week’s NASCAR Busch Series come-from-behind win for the No. 20 car officially was designated as Aric Almirola’s first NASCAR Busch Series win in the record books, but NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin was behind the wheel at the finish. ESPN’s Allen Bestwick will report on Hamlin’s “unofficial win” in Milwaukee when he arrived late by helicopter to replace Almirola. Hamlin managed to come from a lap down to bring the No. 20 car to victory lane. The feature will include thoughts from Almirola on being pulled from the car even after leading a majority of the race to that point.

NASCAR driver Jon Wood Returns to Racing at Daytona
ESPN pit reporter Dave Burns will have the first sit-down interview with NASCAR Busch Series driver Jon Wood, son of legendary owner Ed Wood, who is set to return to the No. 47 car next Friday at Daytona. Wood has been absent from the NASCAR Busch Series for more than a month, after dealing with a misdiagnosis for ADD.

Companion Weekend: NASCAR Busch Series and NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Races at New Hampshire
After three straight weeks of stand-alone NASCAR Busch Series racing, the series rejoins the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup at New Hampshire International Speedway. NASCAR Countdown reporters and analysts will report on the chances for a win for NASCAR Busch Series regulars Stephen Leicht, Steven Wallace, Jason Leffler, Marcos Ambrose and others while many of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup drivers will pull double duty at the track, including NEXTEL Cup driver Tony Stewart, who had a win at New Hampshire in 2005.

Weekend Watch – NHL Draft

The Red Sox are in San Diego for an interleague series with the Padres this weekend. The series features three pretty good pitching matchups, led off by Daisuke Matsuzaka facing off against Greg Maddux on Friday night. Saturday night is Tim Wakefield against Chris Young, and then Sunday afternoon features a beauty with Josh Beckett, (10-1, 3.14) taking on the Padres Jake Peavy (9-1, 1.98)

The NHL draft starts tonight using a model that the NFL is thinking about going to with the first round in prime time starting at 7:00 on Versus, while rounds 2-7 will be tomorrow starting at 10:00am.

Gotta love the Big Show’s reaction to the post here Wednesday afternoon about Gerry Callahan’s condition. Rather than address or dismiss concerns about the health of the morning show co-host, Glenn Ordway attacked what was a side observation of the post and proudly exclaimed that they have indeed been making fun of Callahan, pointing out that they’ve made the sex change operation jokes almost every day! Good for them. There’s nothing like the “We’ve been making sex change operation jokes every day about him” comeback to shut up the critics…

A reminder that my “headline dashboards” for each of the four major Boston pro teams are now finished, and you can use them at any time to check out the latest headlines from the local papers, national sites and fan blogs on the local teams.

RedSoxLinks.com (In San Diego this weekend)

BruinsLinks.com (Draft weekend)

CelticsLinks.com (Draft and Trade Rumors)


Please update your bookmarks, as these are new URL’s and will be the permanent homes to these dashboards as I continue to add onto them.

Former Globe sports staffer Dave Doyle, who couldn’t get off the high school beat at the Globe under Joe Sullivan and had left to carve out a nice role for himself over at FoxSports.com, is on the move again as he has accepted a position as Mixed Martial Arts/Boxing producer for Yahoo! Sports. In that role, he’ll be traveling around the country to the major UFC shows and boxing matches. Seems like he hasn’t done too badly for himself since deciding he wasn’t going anywhere at the Globe.

Chris Jenkins looks at Red Sox fans invading stadiums all over the country, including this weekend in San Diego.

John Donovan of SI.com looks at the patience that the Red Sox have shown in Dustin Pedroia paying off in a big way.

Tony Massarotti looks at the risks involved in big-name free agent pitchers.

Tom Curran has Steve DeOssie leveling some harsh criticism at NFLPA executive director Gene Upshaw. (Was this interview done in the WEEI hallways?)

Curran also lists the most complete safeties in the NFL. Rodney Harrison does make the list.

Sports Media Watch explains everything you ever wanted to know about the NBA television contract.

Clark Booth says that there is one standard for the NFL; another for all the other games under the sun.

Michael McCann of Sports Law Blog has an AP reporter publishing a scouting report that was found on dugout floor of the Arizona Diamondbacks prior to a recent game with the New York Yankees, which revealed how the Diamondbacks intended to pitch to the Yankees.

Josh Bacott & Pat Imig are back with another edition of the Media Circus.

Sports Law Blog also examines whether Kevin Garnett saying no to the Celtics is selfish or understandable.

Bill Simmons matches up Kevin Durant and Greg Oden.

Mike McMahon has a look at new Bruins coach Claude Julien.

Mike Loftus says that Bruins might find some Pat Burns in their new coach.

Win Bates has Providence coach Scott Gordon content for now to wait his turn for an NHL job.

Sports Media Columns

New England/New York
Susan Bickelhaupt looks at Versus expanding its offerings and viewership. Phil Mushnick says that ESPN’s coverage of Sammy Sosa’s 600th home run was stunning for what it ignored regarding the Rangers slugger. Bob Raissman says that we can’t really blame the Mets for their over-the-top campaigning to have Paul LoDuca elected to the National League All Star team, the finger should be pointed at MLB. Richard Sandomir notes that this year’s Tour de France will be under the dark cloud of the doping scandal. He also has a look at the upcoming ESPN miniseries The Bronx Is Burning, which will debut on July 9. Neil Best has Tom Seaver getting into the wine business. Adam Reilly in The Phoenix examines why Dan Shaughnessy is the most hated man in Boston.

More East Coast
Michael McCarthy reports on ESPN tabbing Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic to lead the second game of their Monday Night Football opening night doubleheader. Laura Nachman has Philadelphia’s legendary Palestra as the subject of a documentary. Jim Williams has WUSA-TV 9 Sports Director Brett Haber garnering an Emmy over retired legend George Michael of NBC 4. He also notes that TV color analysts are becoming far more honest about the teams and the leagues that they cover. Chris Zelkovich has former Blue Jays outfielder Jesse Barfield launching a new career with CBC. Michael Hiestand has Kyle Petty serving as TNT NASCAR analyst while driving in this weekend’s Sunday’s Save Mart 350.

Dave Darling notes that MLB has a nightmare on its hands with Barry Bonds approaching home run 756. David Barron looks at Houston’s three sports radio stations vying for listeners. Barry Horn says that while San Antonio and the rest of Texas should be proud of the NBA champs, the rest of America doesn’t get the Spurs.

Teddy Greenstein grades Chicago’s four baseball broadcast teams. Bob Wolfley looks at the Bucks options in next week’s NBA draft. Dan Caesar looks at KFNS’ rowdy and often bawdy morning drive-time show, “The Morning Grind,” on the verge of grinding to a halt. Judd Zulgad notes that the Gophers football team will be debuting on the new Bit Ten Network. Tom Dienhart says that the Big Ten Network will change football on TV.

West Coast
John Maffei looks at this weekend’s Padres/Red Sox series getting overlooked by FOX and ESPN. John Scheibe talks to ESPN’s Erin Andrews about the College World Series. Jay Posner has NBC already getting ready for next year’s U.S. Open at Torrey Pines. Tom Hoffarth has Shaquille O’Neal talking about his new ABC reality show. Jim Carlisle does some sports media ranting and raving. He also notes that Wimbledon goes online this year in his notebook. Joe Davidson has “Dare Dave” finding a home at ESPN.

Weekend Watch – Barry Bonds Hits Boston

Former Boston Globe sports reporter Larry Whiteside, a pioneer in many respects, passed away Friday morning at the age of 69.

Nick Cafardo offers a few thoughts, as well as a copy of the nomination letter he sent to the national committee for the J.G. Taylor Spink Award (Baseball Hall of Fame) earlier this year. Baseball commissioner Bud Selig commented on the passing today as well.

The letter from Cafardo gives you some idea of just how great a man Whiteside was, and yet what he did and accomplished in his career is largely unknown to the average Boston fan.

The Bruins have “relieved” head coach Dave Lewis Dave Lewis and associate coach Marc Habscheid of their duties. Douglas Flynn and Kevin Paul Dupont report on the news.

Hmmm, the Bruins choose 6:00pm on a Friday night to announce it. I guess I just don’t get that practice in general. It’s almost insulting to the fans and public. Much like the Borges “retirement” being announced on a Friday evening.

Messageboards are buzzing that Pat Quinn could be a possible replacement.

Barry Bonds is coming to town this weekend, and the Fenway faithful should be sufficiently stoked up enough to give the San Francisco Giants slugger a loud welcome. Certain members of the Boston media have been salivating over this weekend for months, encouraging the fans to boo Bonds and chant at him for the entire weekend.

Many of these same media types talk about the importance of being objective, and not a home town yahoo. Is encouraging the fans to taunt Bonds any more or less objective than rooting for the home team?

Granted, most of the ones encouraging this behavior are columnists and talk show hosts, not the day-to-day beat writers. But the ones who are advocating the harsh treatment of Bonds have completely lost the right to be critical of the fans for how they behave. If an ugly incident happens this weekend, are those same media types going to knock the fans for “going too far?” Bonds may be a lousy human being and a cheater, but the media’s encouragement to the fans has been distasteful.

A positive this weekend should be warm reception for 2004 ALCS hero Dave Roberts.

Keep up with the news this weekend with the help of RedSoxLinks.com and PatriotsLinks.com.

Check out the view from the Bay Area on the Bay Area Sports Pages.

Bob Ryan provides another entertaining blog entry with The amazing Mr. Scully.

Chad Finn has Nine Innings on FoxSports.com

He’s also got his local edition of Touching All The Bases, where he’ll be live-blogging the first matchup between the Red Sox and Giants in 95 years.

Evan Brunell on Fire Brand of the American League says that letting Orlando Cabrera go was Theo Epstein’s biggest mistake.

Pete Prisco lists out his top 50 NFL players.

Peter Schrager isn’t ready to anoint the Patriots NFL champs for the upcoming season.

Matt Mosley on ESPN’s Hashmarks is an incredibly prolific blogger.

Here’s Bill Simmons’ latest podcast with David Stern.

SI.com has an excerpt from Dan Shaughnessy‘s new book Senior Year: A Father, A Son, and High School Baseball.

Dr Z. has the latest edition of his NFL Mailbag.

You mean it might not be entirely Bill Belichick’s fault that Ted Johnson is having health issues? A tough column from Mike Downey of the Chicago Tribune.

They’re pretty excited about their rings out in Indy.

Sports Media Columns

New England
David Scott has a look at an unexpected infusion of intelligence on the WEEI airwaves. Susan Bickelhaupt notes that the NBA Finals lacked competition…and viewers for ABC. Clark Booth explores why the NBA and NHL ratings have been so horrible this spring.

New York
Bob Raissman says that “major significance should be attached to MLB.com hiring Harold Reynolds.” Phil Mushnick wasn’t pleased with ESPN’s opening round coverage of the U.S. Open. Neil Best looks at ticket resellers such as StubHub getting a boost with the passing of a recent New York bill. Richard Sandomir has a look at the dismal ratings for ABC in the NBA Finals.

More East Coast
Michael Hiestand has some ideas on how to juice up the ratings for the NBA playoffs. Chris Zelkovich has a look at the straight shooting Johnny Miller. Laura Nachman looks at Philly Sports Radio 950 bringing in a local guy to do their morning show. Jim Williams has a look at a huge weekend of racing action.

Dave Darling encourages you to watch the U.S. Open, even if you need to employ a drinking game to get into it. David Barron notes that the NBA Finals were an afterthought for much of the viewing public.

Judd Zulgad has Carl Pohlad-family owned Northern Lights Broadcasting purchasing an FM radio station, but issuing denials that the Twins (who are owned by Pohlad) will end up there in the future. Teddy Greenstein has WSCR-AM 670 host Mike North having a rather heated exchange with White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper on the air Thursday morning. Bob Wolfley has the Milwaukee Admirals finding a new radio home.

West Coast
John Maffei looks at Johnny Miller returning to the site of his own U.S. Open triumph. Joe Davidson says that many viewers seem to prefer Nick Faldo over Miller. larry.stewart has a look at the all-out coverage that the Open is getting. Tom Hoffarth tears into Chris Berman and ESPN’s coverage of the first round of the event. Jim Carlisle notes that pars will be hard to come by for the field this weekend. He also has a notebook on the NBA finals reaching a new low. Jay Posner reports on a pair of Padres announcers keeping busy on the side with some college sports work.

Weekend Viewing Highlights

Friday, June 15

7:00pm, NESN – Giants @ Red Sox

Saturday, June 16

1:00pm, NBC – U.S. Open, 3rd Round
2:00pm, ESPN – College World Series
3:30pm, FOX – Giants @ Red Sox
7:00pm, ESPN – College World Series
8:30pm, ESPN2 – Busch Series: Meijer 300

Sunday, June 17

1:00pm, NBC – U.S. Open, 4th Round
2:00pm, NESN – Giants @ Red Sox
2:00pm, TNT – Nextel Cup: Citizens Bank 400
2:00pm, ESPN – College World Series
7:00pm, ESPN2 – College World Series
8:00pm, ESPN – Mets @ Yankees

Weekly Media Columns – 5/18/07

It’s been a busy week here, and the late afternoon/evening postings have suffered. This one will as well.

Here’s just a few links and the weekly media columns:

Albert Breer has Al Groh talking about linebacking in the Belichick system.

Football Outsiders has an issue with Gil Brandt apparently using their research on NFL.com without giving them credit.

Bill Simmons has a few thoughts on the state of the NBA playoffs and a few links.

Paul Perillo has another offseason edition of Ask PFW.

Clark Booth offers up a number of thoughts and observations on the sports scene.

Curt Schilling analyzes his most recent start against Detroit on his blog.

Jordan Ellenberg on Slate examines whether Roger Clemens is going to be worth what the Yankees are paying him.

Sports Media Columns from Around the Country

New England
David Scott says that Don Orsillo and Jerry Remy really didn’t challenge MLB commissioner Bud Selig in his appearance in the NESN booth last night. Susan Bickelhaupt has a look at ESPN’s announcement earlier in the week about new programming for the network. Bill Doyle has Worcester Sharks announcer Jamie Smock hoping for a shot at an NHL job. Shawn Courchesne looks at a new TV deal for UConn.

New York
Phil Mushnick says the NBA got it right with their suspensions in the Spurs/Suns series. Richard Sandomir notes that Mets/Yankees is the king of the interleague matchups. Neil Best has a look at Lee Mazzilli’s foray into television this season with SNY. Bob Raissman says that this weekend’s Mets/Yankees is of great importance to the Yankees, who can’t afford to fall further behind the Red Sox.

More East Coast
Michael Hiestand notes that sports history has an odd way of finding Craig Sager, from Hank Aaron’s record setting home run, to Larry Bird’s 1979 NCAA tournament run with Indiana State, to a number of other interesting moments. Chris Zelkovich has CBC Sports rising from the grave with a new deal with the Blue Jays. Laura Nachman looks a number of announcers lining up for MLB jobs. Leonard Shapiro looks at Gold Channel’s search for the perfect pairing with Nick Faldo. Jim Williams looks at the Preakness coverage this weekend, and also has a look at the Nationals/Orioles interleague matchup.

Barry Jackson has a look at the amazing Jack Ramsay, who is 82 years old, battling lung and brain cancer, caring for his wife who has Alzheimer’s disease, swims in the Gulf of Mexico each in addition to his daily routine of 60 push-ups and 135 sit-ups and still analyzed 35 games this year for ESPN Radio. Looking ahead to next weekend, Dave Darling looks at the Red Sox/Yankees rivalry, listing the top ten moments in the rivalry. David Barron has Jeff Van Gundy ready to call it as he sees it in his role as ESPN analyst for the playoffs.

Teddy Greenstein has Cubs announcer Ron Santo red-faced after his comments about the pink bats used last Sunday to raise awareness of breast cancer on Mother’s Day. Judd Zulgad has the Vikings dividing up their team TV programming among three different stations. Bob Wolfley says that the debate between Dan Patrick and David Stern this week on ESPN radio made for a great listen.

West Coast
Tom Hoffarth has NBC getting ready to cover the Preakness without making too many references and mentions of last year. Larry Stewart also has a look at NBC’s plans for coverage of the race. Jay Posner has Padres announcer Matt Vasgersian calling it “ignorant” and a “disservice” to viewers to suggest that announcers shouldn’t mention a no-hitter in progress after a recent 5 1/3 inning no hit stint by Greg Maddox. John Maffei has baseball setting itself up for some cold weather games this fall. Jim Carlisle looks at ESPN’s coverage of sports the network has a stake in. Rhiannon Potkey looks at softball star Jessica Mendoza working the NCAA softball telecasts for ESPN. Joe Davidson has the NFL thinking about speeding up the draft a bit.