A day late, (because of me) here is week’s edition of Thoughts by Kent Thaler.
Jeff Horrigan tells us that for the first time in four years “Fall” won’t mean “Fail” at Fenway. Steven Krasner says the finish line is in sight. Paul Doyle looks at the Sox win and a strong finish from Byung-Hyun Kim. Bob Hohler looks at a win that included the Sox full complement of players. Michael Silverman looks at Jeff Suppan, taking it one pitch at a time. Kevin McNamara has another look at last night’s Sox starter. Jackie MacMullan says Grady deserves to be back next year. Lenny Megliola looks at another night closer to the playoffs for the Sox. Kevin Paul Dupont examines the life and times of Tim Wakefield, who next year will mark his 10th year in Boston, a seeming miracle for a knuckleball pitcher picked up off the scrapheap. Alex Speier looks at the return of the bats last night at Fenway. MacMullan also looks at another shaky ride from the bullpen. Jim Fennell looks at former Sox player and manager Butch Hobson, one win away from managing the first ever two time champion of the Atlantic League. Steve Buckley has a pay column looking at Kim, who he thinks might be on track after Grady yanked in him from the game last Friday night. Dupont has a quick look at David Ortiz, who hit # 28 last night after a brief slump. Silverman looks at Scott Williamson and his concerns off field with the health of his infant son and wife. Horrigan’s notebook looks at a baserunning blunder from Johnny Damon that would’ve been a capital offense had Manny done it. (Not from Horrigan, just in general.) Damon can joke about with the media, so he’s all set. Hohler’s notebook looks at Williamson’s situation. Krasner’s notebook has more on the same topic.
The injuries are still the topic with the Patriots. Bob Ryan looks at the situation, acknowledges Belichick’s attempts at black humor on the topic, and looks for the positives…the contribution of the rookies who have stepped in to fill big shoes. I still say some of Ryan’s colleagues at the Globe could learn so much from Ryan. Kevin Mannix hands out the weekly report card. B’s and C’s all around. Tom Curran looks at what the Pats are trying to do to deal with the hand they’ve been dealt. Alan Greenberg looks at the injuries and what the Pats are doing to get by. Jim Baker has another injury related article. Check out what Tom Brady’s elbow looked like last week after the Philly game. Nick Cafardo looks at the cuts into the roster all these injuries have made. Dan Pires wonders what’s next for the Pats. From Saturday, Mark Farinella calls Bill Belichick a liar. Even the reporters from the small papers don’t get it. The fans don’t care how Belichick treats you guys, or if he makes you feel like a moron so quit whining about it. If fact, I’d venture to guess most fans enjoy that part of it. Don’t try to say he’s doing injustice to the fans by how he treats you, either. Do your job, there are other sources of information besides Belichick’s press conferences. Back to the injuries, never mind the jokes, the loss of Ted Washington is huge for this team. Michael Parente looks at what it means for the team. Rich Thompson also looks at what the big guy means inside. Jon Wallach is concerned about all the injuries. Mike Reiss says it’s time to lower the expectations for this team. Gerry Callahan has a pay column in which he tells us the broken hearts in the locker room from two weeks ago have been replaced with broken hips, legs and arms. He concludes:
We said it two weeks ago, we'll say it again. Now we'll find out what kind of coach Bill Belichick really is. He bounced back nicely after making the mistake with Milloy, but that was then. This is now. The broken hearts have healed. The broken bones will take a while. Until then, the Patriots need more than a smart coach with a good plan. They need a miracle.
Ian M. Clark says the running game is on the rebound. Christopher Price says one of the reasons Bill Belichick can still sleep at night is Adam Vinatieri. Thompson’s notebook looks at Mike Compton, finished for the year. Cafardo’s notebook looks at the acquisition of Wilbert Brown. Curran’s notebook looks at Jarvis Green, hoping for a shot at the nose tackle. Parente’s notebook has more on the injury report.
NESN has Red Sox/Orioles at 7:00.
Pats improve to 2-1, but not without paying a heavy price. The injury bug once again claims starters. Nick Cafardo says the Patriots said “So what?” to all the injuries and just went out and won anyway. Tom Curran says given the ways things are going, get used to this kind of win. Ugly. Alan Greenberg says that eventually these injuries are going to catch up with the Pats if they continue to mount, but yesterday they had enough to get it done. Michael Felger looks at a victory marred by costly injuries to key players. Ian M. Clark says the Pats defense, though battered, came up big when it had to. Mike Reiss says the Patriots turned to an old formula to pull out he win yesterday; just manage to win. Michael Parente says a bend-don’t-break mentality got the Patriots through this one. Christopher Price wraps up the story of a war of attrition. Ron Borges looks at the injuries, noting that it’s going to be hard for Bill Belichick to keep all of them under wraps. He does get off a pretty good line when he says Ted Washington having a broken leg is like a giraffe having a sore throat. He also says that Mike Vrabel has either a broken wrist or arm. Kevin Mannix notes that the injuries led to some eye opening combinations on the D-Line by the end of the game. He comes away impressed by the Patriots grit and effort. Jim Donaldson says the sky is falling. Dan Shaughnessy has a look at Tom Brady and a rough start to the season as far as injuries to the QB and team. Steve Buckley has a rambling pay column in which he says this Patriot team has no identity, and needs to find one soon. Michael Smith and Jim Baker look at Ty Law, bouncing back from an injured ankle to return to the game. Paul Kenyon looks at Law and Asante Samuel having big afternoons on the corner. Lenny Megliola has a look at Samuel, as #22 made the biggest play on a day that began with a moment of silence for Ron Burton, who wore that number. It was his first ever interception return for a touchdown. Peter May has a similar look at Samuel stepping in and making the big play. Jeff Jacobs has a third story on the play by the rookie. In addition, Howard Bryant has a pay column on Samuel and his pick. Kevin McNamara looks at the Jets failure on third downs, which led Herman Edwards to try a fake field goal, which was also unsuccessful. Joe Burris also looks at the unusual call by Edwards. Tim Weisberg says that with all the injuries, the Patriots 2003 draft is paying early dividends. Mark Murphy looks at the strong running game exhibited by the Patriots yesterday. Price also has a look at Faulk & Smith playing well. Parente has a more in depth look at the improvement in the running game, which was a key to victory. Curran has a look at Colvin’s injury and the accusations made towards Belichick that he was lying in the matter. Speaking of Colvin, Ken Powers, along with Jennifer Toland, today in the Telegram & Gazette, speculate that Colvin’s career may be over. They use as their source a doctor who is quick to point out that he has not examined Colvin, nor has he had access to any medical information on the situation. The headline of the article screams that Colvin’s career could be in jeopardy, but the doctor, Dr. Rick Herman, who is used by WBCN on their pregame shows, says:
"As far as returning to play, the worst-case scenario might be that he may have played his last down in the NFL," Herman said. "Injuries of this type are incredibly rare. In fairness, however, the best-case scenario is it's a small fracture that required a minimally invasive amount of surgery and, after an adequate window of rehabilitation, he'll fully recover."
He goes on to says that comparing this injury to that suffered by Bo Jackson, is “speculation on a speculation.” Steve Solloway wonders if the curse of Lawyer Milloy is responsible for all the injuries. Kenyon has more on the injury epidemic that is striking the Patriots. Gus Martins looks at another rough game for Curtis Martin. Mike Lowe looks at the Patriots depth paying off. Rich Thompson has a look at Rick Lyle, who will be pressed into full time duty with the injury to Washington. George Kimball has a pay column in which the Jets lament their lost opportunities. Sam Garnes’ dropped interception being foremost. Cafardo’s notebook looks at the running game, which was fun for all involved. He also mentions the WBCN report on Colvin. Felger’s notebook looks at the key injuries on defense. Curran’s notebook looks at Tom Brady, in denial about this injury. Parente’s notebook says the Pats are getting a crash course in dealing with injuries. The Standard-Times notebook says that Colvin has not officially been placed on the injured list yet.
Sox inch closer to the playoffs on the arm of Pedro. Bob Hohler looks at a big performance from the trio of Pedro, Manny and Kim, all of whom were silent after the game. Hohler doesn’t seem to mind. Michael Silverman says the Sox were able to put Saturday out of their mind and bounce back yet again. Sean McAdam says that Pedro can cure any bad game hangover. David Heuschkel says that Pedro saved his best for last. Tony Massarotti echoes those sentiments. Gordon Edes says that Pedro is a comic book superhero. Literally. Massarotti looks at a small step forward for Byung-Hyun Kim. Hohler’s notebook looks at a tough stretch for Scott Williamson, on and off the field. Silverman’s notebook looks at Nomar having to leave the game early after getting plunked in the side. McAdam’s notebook looks at who will be on the postseason roster. He says Sauerbeck will be in that mix. Heuschkel’s notebook looks at Kim getting another chance yesterday.
NESN has Red Sox/Orioles at 7:00. ABC has Raiders/Broncos at 9:00.