The Streak Ends

Sometimes you just have to tip your cap to the opposition and move on. Last might the Red Sox were shut out on a terrific performance by Ted Lilly. The game stories are served up by Kevin Paul DupontJeff HorriganSteven KrasnerDavid Heuschkel and David Borges. Lilly’s performance last night showed the promise that so many have seen in the lefthander, but which has not always be realized on the mound. Gordon Edes takes a look at the pitcher and inconsistency that has plagued his career thus far. Michael Silverman looks at Lilly outdueling Pedro last night. Gerry Callahan (subscription only) says that the trade of Nomar has made the Red Sox a better team, and as Johnny Damon says…in every way. Callahan goes on to say:

It seems silly to give Epstein so much credit for a move that makes so much sense, but this deal would not have been made three years ago, five years ago, 10 years ago. Probably not 20 or 30 or 50 years ago, either. It was almost an institutional thing. The stodgy old men in the Sox' front office didn't even consider trading their superstars - even if the situation begged for it - because they once sent a certain pug-nosed slugger to the Bronx and things have been a little uneven around here since. So they refused to pull the trigger and watched as Clemens walked, Mo Vaughn walked, Wade Boggs walked. The Sox had little or nothing to show in return, but at least the little men in the big offices didn't get burned in effigy.

Stan Grossfeld has a feature on a day in the life of Manny Ramirez. An entertaining read, and a glimpse of Manny that many have not seen before. Jon Couture looks at the hopes raised by the Red Sox six game winning streak. Jeff Sullivan has a number of baseball related thoughts, most prominent of which is his assertion that this isn’t the year for the Red Sox. Garry Brown says the Sox can never win when they have a great 1-2 punch at the plate. Gordon Edes looks at Dave Roberts, waiting for his chance to contribute. Michael Silverman looks at Doug Mirabelli, your starting catcher the new few nights while Jason Varitek serves his suspension. The notebooks are all about Varitek dropping his appeal. Dupont’s notebook doesn’t have much else, Horrigan’s notebook has the Sox providing encouragement to the Rhode Island Little League squad, Krasner’s notebook has a couple injury updates. Heuschkel’s notebook has some Pedro notes. Borges’ notebook looks at the Sox options at the backup catcher spot with Mirabelli starting.

Michael Felger says that what the Patriots went through Saturday night should just serve as a taste of things to come for the Patriots, who are going to play every game this season with a target on their backs. Alan Greenberg has a look at wide receiver/kick returner hopeful Michael Jennings, who has impressed some in camp, and hopes to at least turn it into a practice squad gig. Adam Kilgore has a look at Ted Johnson, still contributing and hoping to be in New England for some time to come. Tom Curran had a Patriots chat on ProJo.com last night. Felger’s notebook looks at the progress of Benjamin Watson.

From yesterday, Eric McHugh says the nose tackles have been a huge disappointment thus far. Chris Kennedy said the Patriots looked like chumps in Cincinnati. Glen Farley said the Patriots were “thoroughly humiliated by a franchise that has been an NFL version of the Los Angeles Clippers.” Hector Longo finds a lot of things to pick at from the loss. McHugh’s notebook says Rosevelt Colvin was the only bright spot from Saturday.

John Molori’s Media Blitz looks at the sports advertising agency of Duffy & Shanley and some Olympic items. Christopher Price says that even though athletes may deny it, they do read the papers and listen and watch sports programming.

NESN has Red Sox/Blue Jays at 7:00.

Chi-Town Sweep

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The Red Sox finished off a sweep of the White Sox in Chicago in a nationally televised ESPN game. After the White Sox had rallied to take a 5-4 lead, Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz had back-to-back home runs to put the Red Sox back on top and the bullpen held the lead. David Heuschkel feels this could be the signature win of the season for the Red Sox. Bob Hohler looks at Manny and Ortiz picking up Derek Lowe. Jeff Horrigan looks at the lethal 1-2 punch that left Chicago KO’d and the Red Sox right in the thick of the division race. Steven Krasner focuses on Ortiz breaking out of his slump, and David Borges says Red Sox fans have visions of the Yankees. Michael Silverman looks at how much the standings have changed in just a week’s time. Gordon Edes looks at Mike Timlin coming through in a clutch situation for the Sox, overcoming a Manny slip in the outfield that put the tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position in the eighth inning. Alex Speier says there is no doubt, this Red Sox team is better than the one before the big trade. Silverman says we got to see both sides of Manny on display last night. Hohler’s notebook says Ortiz’s struggles have been in part to the change to the cleanup spot in the order, though he had little trouble there last night. Krasner’s notebook also looks at Ortiz. Horrigan’s notebook has more on Mike Timlin coming through in a tough spot. Heuschkel’s notebook has Jason Varitek likely dropping the appeal of his suspension, even though he is in the middle of a hot streak. Borges’ notebook says Alan Embree is ready for action again after getting a week off to rest his arm.

If you’re an on-air Boston sports media personality and at a loss for words and things to stir up and complain about regarding the Red Sox, take heart. You can spend this week ripping the Patriots. Then, if they should lose to a charged-up Panthers team in another meaningless preseason game next Saturday, you can keep the panic going another week and bring it to new heights. Nick Cafardo, voice of reason, says that no team deserves a mulligan more than the Patriots. Kevin Mannix though, disagrees.

If anything, the reality of seeing the defending Super Bowl champions being completely outclassed, outhustled, outperformed and outcoached by Cincinnati is even more disconcerting a day later. Particularly given what's on the horizon.

I’m not sure how it is possible to be outcoached in a preseason game, seeing as how no game plans are usually put in, but hey, Kevin is on a roll here. Let him have his moment. Tom Curran says that this debacle will hopefully serve as a wakeup call for the Patriots. Alan Greenberg says the loss signals a rough week of practice ahead for the lads of Bill Belichick. Michael Parente says the Patriots may not lose often, but when they do, they make it ugly. Joe Burris says that the problem with the Patriots Saturday night was simple fundamentals. Michael Felger says that the Patriots miss Ted Washington. Mike Reiss agrees that there are some serious holes in the Patriots run defense at this point. Felger’s notebook takes a look at Rosevelt Colvin’s performance on Saturday night as the linebacker took part in 33 snaps, had some struggles against the run (as did all the Patriots) but had some good moments in getting to the quarterback.

Bob Halloran says that no one dares question “super genius” Bill Belichick but we’ll rip a similar move by Terry Francona. Del Jones continues his AFC East preview and wonders if this is year Drew Bledsoe finally puts it all together. Funny moment from the Buffalo game this weekend as reported by the Buffalo News:

Referee Johnny Grier apparently was late in hearing Drew Bledsoe had been traded to the Bills two seasons ago. Bledsoe called a timeout on the Bills' second series, and Greer announced, "Timeout, New England," before realizing his mistake.

David Scott looks at the Sunday night shows, says the Pats people aren’t panicking and the Globe won’t have its Smith replacement until after the Olympic flame burns out.

NESN has Red Sox/Blue Jays at 7:00. ESPN will have Rangers/Twins at 8:00. ABC will have Rams/Chiefs at 8:00.

Patriots Rear View

Sorry for the lack of Sunday links, I’m still trying to finalize a new deal for a Sunday person. Negotations are tough as the potential linker has hired the Poston Brothers to handle the talks.

In the meantime, you can check out the Patriots Gameday Rear View for last night’s preseason loss in Cincinnati.

A Granny For Manny

Abbreviated Saturday links by Rich ([email protected])

Rocket Dud

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The Red Sox had an off day yesterday, but there was a buzz going around in the early evening hours. Bob Lobel had reported on the early news that the Red Sox and Astros were in talks to bring Roger Clemens back to Boston. This whole scenario was no doubt brought about by the item in Mike Lupica’s column (see the afternoon links of yesterday) where he casually dropped the news that the Red Sox had put in a waiver claim on Clemens. So the buzz got hot and heavy for a few hours there, and then on the 10:00 news, Lobel said that talks were off and the window was closed. A curiously short window, I’d say. Dirt Dog says 48 hours was the window and Kevin Youkilis was part of the price. Bob Hohler’s notebook today seems to downplay the report and that there were any real trade talks going on between the clubs.

Michael Silverman has a feature-style article on Scott Williamson and the tough season he’s had with injuries and how his absence has been devastating to the Red Sox. He addresses the injury in Yankee stadium and subsequent confrontation with Curt Schilling, who in hindsight, appears to have been way out of line. Bob Hohler has a look at Orlando Cabrera’s stature in his home country of Columbia. He hails from an area with many Red Sox fans. David Heuschkel says the upcoming road trip is crucial to the Red Sox playoff hopes. They simply can’t afford to slide back into their old road ways. John Tomase looks at the Red Sox finding their way without Nomar. He breaks out some interesting fielding numbers for the Red Sox and Cubs, but before and after the trade. Tony Chamberlain has yet another look at Bill Lee. Silverman’s notebook says things have been looking up for the Sox since the blockbuster trade of Nomar. He also downplays the talk of Clemens to Boston. Jeff Sullivan’s notebook looks at the return of Mark Bellhorn.

Steve Buckley (subscription only) says that everyone in New England is rushing to the boxscores every morning to see how Nomar is doing. He says he and the rest of the media are rooting for a Red Sox/Cubs World Series:

Red Sox. Cubs. World Series. And I have no difficulty saying I am rooting for it to happen. A story like this comes along but rarely, and those of us who write about sports for a living always dream of that elusive, compelling story that begs for over-the-top coverage. Show me a New England sports media representative who isn't rooting for a Cubs-Red Sox World Series, and I'll show you a liar, or a naive fool.

With things so tranquil down in Patriots training camp, some media types feel the need to try to stir things up and manufacture a story. We saw Hector Longo do it last weekend, the other night on FSN Greg Dickerson labeled the entire Patriots training camp to date “lackadaisical”, then quickly backtracked and amended it to “laid back”. Today Kevin Mannix, playing the role of Inspector Clouseau unveils the scandal that Tom Brady and Troy Brown were held out of practice yesterday!

There it was, the final real practice of the week, and neither Tom Brady nor Troy Brown was in uniform. Something serious must have been going on. Why else would coach Bill Belichick keep two critical veterans like Brady and Brown out of practice so close to a game - even a preseason game, particularly since the passing game needs so much work?

I think I got a whiff of sarcasm in the air there. Mannix tries to throw some more mud against the wall in his notebook, where he says that Belichick and Law are feuding…he says there is a “dispute” between them related to a workout bonus. Yet there is not a single shred of evidence in the piece about ANY such dispute. It appears to be 100% conjecture on Kevin’s part. Even if it is not, why not provide something to back your claim, Kevin?

Tom Curran takes a look at Ted Johnson, who is still a Patriot after all these years, and is approaching the time in his life where he has to at least begin pondering his football mortality. Adam Kilgore (more on him later) has a look at Jim Miller, who has had a valuable role during camp, despite not throwing a single pass. Alan Greenberg has a look at Corey Dillon as he prepares to return to Cincinnati tomorrow night and his continued work to fit in with his new club. Ian M Clark has a very extensive Patriots notebook, looking at the return to health of several players, the rise of Asante Samuel and the continued learning process for Dan Klecko. Michael Parente has a look at battles for several backup positions. Kilgore’s notebook has a look at Rosevelt Colvin, and also looks at Brady and Brown sitting out yesterday. Instead of deeming it a scandal, Kilgore tells us that they were given the session off, and it happened to the longest (nearly three hours) that the team has had thus far. Curran’s notebook looks at Jim Miller.

Bill Griffith looks at NBC using the storytelling angle to hook and keep viewers for the Olympics. David Scott has a two part Scott’s Shots with a Stump the Schwab column AND a regular edition of Scott’s Shots with more questions for the Globe Sports desk, Olympic highlights and Mold Pizza problems. He also looks at the Sports Plus show on NESN the other night that dealt with the Boston Sports Media. Interestingly only 30% of those polled said that they trusted the sports media in Boston. Now you see why a site like this exists.

Keeping on the media theme…I gotta ask…what is going on over at the Globe sports department? Yes, I know, there is an Olympics going on, so the staff is going to be spread thin. But there are disturbing things happening in what used to be the finest sports section in the country. New sports editor Joe Sullivan has had to deal with two defections…Michael Holley and Michael Smith and has yet to replace either one. (Yeah, it’s early yet with Smith.) Sources say that the freelance budget has been slashed, the golf section trimmed. Earlier this summer Sullivan had to deal with one of his most prominent writers, Ron Borges, getting involved in an embarrassing scuffle with another writer while at a boxing event. Borges denies steadfastly that any suspension was handed out, but moles at the Globe say that Borges quietly got a week suspension worked in around his normal July vacation. The sports page has been relying heavily on the work of two college interns, Marc Carig and Adam Kilgore for much of its content in recent weeks. This week Kilgore has been running ragged between Foxboro and Fenway, covering both in the same day. Those two have been doing a fine job, but what’s going to happen when they head back to school in a couple weeks? Who is going to replace Michael Smith? Are we in for a full season of Nick Cafardo and Borges’ (Read: negative) slanted coverage of the World Champion Patriots? The Sullivan era at the Globe hasn’t been a smooth one thus far. It’s probably not all his fault…The NY Times Company has a lot to do with these decisions, I’m sure.

UPN38 has Red Sox/White Sox at 7:00. FSN will have Pete Brock and John Tomase at 6:30 and Andy Gresh at 10:00. CN8’s Sports Pulse will have Andre Tippett at 10:00.

08.19.04 Afternoon

With the shortest paragraphs this side of Jim Donaldson, Bob Stern looks at the Red Sox hitting their stride with a three game sweep of the Blue Jays. Rob Bradford looks at the Sox finishing off a .700 homestand. Alan Greenwood says the “experts” said a 7-3 homestand would be acceptable, and that is what the Sox delivered. Mike Fine has a look at Tim Wakefield hoping to round back into form for the stretch run. Mike Lupica says the Red Sox would be a very dangerous playoff opponent…if they can get in. Fine’s notebook looks at Earl Snyder’s Red Sox debut.

Eric McHugh looks at Jim Miller, returning to health and hoping to be a part of the 2004 Patriots. Glen Farley and Chris Kennedy each have articles on linebacker Justin Kurpeikis, who led the Patriots with nine defensive tackles last Friday night, but faces an uphill climb in trying to make the rotation. McHugh’s notebook looks at Matt Light, Kennedy’s notebook looks at concern over the passing game.

Sweep of the Jays

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The Red Sox finished off a three game sweep of the Blue Jays, finishing the 10 game homestand at 7-3. Bob Hohler looks at a good performance from Tim Wakefield. Michael Silverman says that the sweep leaves Sox fans with hope for October. Joe McDonald looks at the eight strong innings from Wakefield leading the Sox. David Heuschkel says even though things got interesting late, this was an easy win for the Red Sox. David Borges says the front offices of these two clubs may share similar ideas, but on the field, it’s no contest. Lenny Megliola says it was smooth sailing for the knuckleball of Tim Wakefield last night. Michael Vega says the knuckleballer left the Jays in his Wake. Steve Buckley says last night was a morale booster for Wakefield and the Sox. Joe Haggerty has a final look at the night for Wakefield.

Howard Bryant has a “Boston Uncommon” column today. (subscription only) In it, he explores the fact that the Red Sox are trying to “tone down” the expectation levels around this club. Not that they don’t think they can win the World Series, but because they set them so high to begin with, this club has been under a microscope with every game and morale has suffered. He says:

In a sense, the Red Sox asked for this situation with their "World Series or bust'' attitude, a viewpoint that is tiredly accepted in the Bronx and fatal everywhere else. Boston fans, it appears, were not prepared for the rigors of a full season, more comfortable instead to pick up where the Sox and Yanks left off last fall. Exploiting this sentiment, Red Sox management marketed the team through the prism of the Yankee rivalry. While it's been great for revenues, the strategy has been bad for morale, hence the joy over beating up the Devil Rays.

He concludes the column with a note about Larry Lucchino denying that the Red Sox leaked any information about Nomar’s injury as Bryant had claimed in a column last week. Michael Gee looks at Earl Snyder making his Red Sox debut. David Heuschkel and David Borges also look at Snyder. Adam Kilgore looks at Kevin Millar stepping up and filling the fifth spot in the batting order. There is a brief sidebar by Steve Buckley about a 104 year old Sox fan, who remembers the glory days of the franchise. Gee’s subscription column says the Sox are in the “must win” section of their schedule. Good thing they got those losses out of the way before the playoffs, huh Mike? Hohler’s notebook looks at the close return of Mark Bellhorn. Silverman’s notebook says Keith Foulke is ok with his increased workload as of late. McDonald’s notebook looks at Sox fans getting behind Earl Snyder. Heuschkel’s notebook looks at another radio outlet for Sox fans in Connecticut.

Alan Greenberg looks at the Patriots tackles, Matt Light and Tom Ashworth, getting back into the swing of practice and having a little fun at the same time. Michael Felger has a look at new Patriots linebackers coach Dean Pees, who is making the transition from successful college head coach to NFL positional coach. Adam Kilgore looks at Assante Samuel, who is aiming to take over a starting cornerback position. Michael Parente says that Bill Belichick was unhappy with the performance of the passing game last Friday night.

Hector Longo has a look at Daniel Graham, hoping to make 2004 his breakout season. Eric McHugh looks at the Patriots young receivers, trying to carve out a spot for themselves in the NFL. Glen Farley and Rob Bradford each have a look at David Patten as he tries to come back from injury and ward off the aforementioned young receivers from taking his spot on the roster. Felger’s notebook looks at Belichick’s dissatisfaction with the passing game. Tom Curran’s notebook also looks at the attempts to fix the issues with the passing. Kilgore’s notebook has still more on the passing. Parente’s notebook looks at the Pats having some fun at the end of practice, and McHugh’s notebook looks at a healthy camp for Adam Vinatieri.

Michael O’Connor says that Mike O’Connell is ok with the arbitrator’s award to Joe Thornton.

NESN will carry the Portland Sea Dogs vs Trenton tonight at 7:00. You can check out SS prospect Hanley Ramirez.

Orlando’s Magic Kingdom

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Red Sox

Orlando Cabrera delivered in the bottom of the ninth, giving the Fenway faithful something to cheer the Red Sox shortstop about. Game stories are provided by Bob HohlerMichael SilvermanJoe McDonaldTom YantzGarry Brown and David Borges. As mentioned, Cabrera delivered his first big moment for the Red Sox last night, and Lenny Megliola takes a look at the shortstop, who is still adjusting to life in Boston. Sean McAdam says that Tommy Harper has been trying to help Cabrera in his new life with the Red Sox. Marc Carig looks at Cabrera, finally feeling good about himself with his new team. Steve Buckley also has a subscription column on Cabrera, which even though I have a subscription to, I can’t read because the login page is messed up. Joe Haggerty also looks at Cabrera delivering for the Sox.

Adam Kilgore has a look at the performance of Pedro Martinez last night, who didn’t get the victory, but was happy with the team win. Michael Gee also had a subscription column on Pedro. (see above) Steve Buckley has a look at the contributions of Johnny Damon last night, who hit a solo home run and scored the winning run from first. David Borges has a look at callup Earl Snyder, who got the call yesterday to replace Kevin Youkilis on the big league roster. Michael Gee has a look at Keith Foulke, who got the win last night and doesn’t really think of himself as a closer. Marc Carig takes a look at the time that Terry Francona the player had to switch to a position he had not played before. Hohler’s notebook looks at Youkilis and David McCarty heading to the DL. That is also the subject of Silverman’s notebook, who also looks at the continued tensions between the Sox and Blue Jays. McDonald’s notebook looks at Earl Snyder being called up as a replacement. That is also the lead topic of Yantz’s notebook. Brown’s notebook and Borges’ notebook also look at the continued roster shuffling by the Red Sox.

Patriots

Michael Parente and Kevin Mannix each look at Dan Klecko’s efforts to make the transition from Nose Tackle to Middle Linebacker. The second year player is getting assistance and advice from Tedy Bruschi, who made a similar move early in his career, changing from a lineman to a linebacker. Adam Kilgore – doing double duty – Sox and Pats (see the David Scott article below) looks at Bill Belichick’s fondness for taking Lineman and turning them into linebackers. Joe Burris and Chris Kennedy each look at speedster Michael Jennings, hoping to transform from a track star to a wide receiver. So far he has opened a few eyes and looks to be a prime practice squad candidate. Alan Greenberg takes a good look at the Troy Brown at Cornerback experiment and the reasoning behind it by Bill Belichick. Christopher Price also looks at this topic.

Kevin McNamara looks at the Patriots situation at backup QB. Glen Farley has a good look at Lonnie Paxton as he comes back from the first major injury of his career with a new perspective on life and football. Dave D’Onofrio has a look at Dana Stubblefield as he continues to learn the system and fit in with his new team. Eric McHugh has a look at Tom Ashworth getting back to work. Jonathan Comey says that the NFL is targeting the Patriots. Burris’ notebook looks at Earthwind Moreland. Mannix’s notebook and McNamara’s notebook each have more on Michael Jennings.

Celtics

Shira Springer says Marcus Banks has no hard feelings towards the Celtics for trading him to the Lakers and then taking him back. Danny Ainge was on with John Dennis and Steve DeOssie on WEEI this morning and one of the things he mentioned was that he tried very hard to keep in touch with Banks throughout the process, but that the second year guard was a very hard person to get a hold of. He said he left numerous messages with him and his agent and tried to keep him informed throughout. He says things are good now between them, a view Banks agrees with in the Springer article. Ainge also said that he thinks Gary Payton will eventually report, he thinks Payton will have a session with the Boston media sometime in the next 10 days or so. He called Delonte West a Mike Bibby/Chris Mullin type player, in that he’s very under control, smart and deliberate, but also very athletic. He had very good reports on Tom Gugliotta, feeling that he is completely over his health issues, and feels he can play 80 games this year. He was also high on Raef LaFrentz, feeling that he is going to be good for 75 games. Ainge said towards the end of the conversation that the only team in the East that he feels that he would concede is better at this point would be the Pistons. He feels the Celtics are right there with everyone else in the East. Michael Muldoon has a look at “Poker Game” between the Celtics and Payton.

Bruins

Kevin Paul Dupont and Michael O’Connor look at Joe Thornton receiving 6.75 Million in an arbitration decision.

Media

David Scott has a BSMW exclusive look at the departure of Michael Smith from the Globe to ESPN, and suggests a capable replacement on the Patriots beat for Smith. Steve Buckley has a preview of his Old Time Baseball Game, being held tomorrow night.

NESN has Red Sox/Blue Jays at 7:00. ESPN will have Yankees/Twins at 7:00. ESPN2 will have Braves/Padres at 10:00.

Tito’s Folly Averted

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What could’ve been known as Tito’s Folly instead now will hopefully become a footnote on the season. After the lineups were announced yesterday afternoon and included Doug Mientkiewicz starting at second base, the airwaves were filled with critics, both professional and amateur. Francona didn’t really help his cause with his explanation. WEEI, NESN and FSN all hammered the move prior to the game. In the end, Mientkiewicz wasn’t really a factor in the game, other than getting bowled other by Carlos Delgado on the basepath. Nick Cafardo has the game story for the Globe, and he notes the testiness of the contest after the aforementioned incident. Jeff Horrigan focuses on the effort by Derek Lowe and some timely hitting. Steven Krasner asserts that because of the conditions last night, the contest turned into survival of the fittest. Jeff Goldberg says that Lowe and Sox didn’t wilt despite having some circumstances against them. David Borges also has a recap of the night at Fenway. Keith Foulke got himself a two inning save last night, and Sean McAdam says we should expect that Foulke will be serving as his own setup man more often as we go down the stretch. Steve Buckley (subscription only) defends the move of putting Mientkiewicz at second base. He says its thinking-outside-the-box, something that is frowned upon in baseball, and around this region. He says it wasn’t like the Sox put Dick Stuart or Mo Vaughn at second. Mientkiewicz is “an average-sized, slick-fielding first baseman.” The move worked out just fine.

Paul Harber looks at Derek Lowe sending a message to Carlos Delgado. Michael Gee says the Sox and Blue Jays played a little rough last night. Adam Kilgore looks at the collision between Mientkiewicz and Delgado. Alex Speier looks at the shortage of infielders for the Red Sox. Joe Haggerty looks at the Sox once again showing signs of life in the rain. Jeff Sullivan looks at Bill Buckner getting booed at Pawtucket, and a number of other Sox related items. Harber also looks at Curtis Leskanic, itching to get back into action. Steve Buckley looks at Orlando Cabrera feeling the heat of Fenway for the first time. Kilgore also takes a look at Blue Jays Interim manager John Gibbons. Gee also has a subscription column looking at the struggles of the Blue Jays this season. All of the notebooks look at the situation at second base for the Red Sox. Cafardo’s notebook also has Trot Nixon saying he’ll be playing in September and October. Horrigan’s notebook looks at Kevin Youkilis resting up. Krasner’s notebook has Mark Bellhorn getting some swings in. Goldberg’s notebook says Bellhorn is getting close. Borges’ notebook just pretty much sticks with Mientkiewicz.

Michael Felger looks at Benjamin Watson getting welcomed to practice by his teammates. Some typical rookie treatment going on by the lads. Alan Greenberg and Michael Parente also look at Watson coming aboard. Michael Smith says that Ty Warren is shaping up to be a very good selection by the Patriots last year. Tom Curran says Chas Gessner is having a solid camp, especially on special teams, and might just have a shot at making the team. Mark Carig looks at Tom Ashworth finally getting on the practice field. Christopher Price takes a look at the Watson signing. Felger’s notebook looks at Richard Seymour becoming a mentor on defense. Curran’s notebook and Smith’s notebook each look at the signing of Watson.

Shira Springer looks at the Celtics/Lakers trade, saying that Danny Ainge clearly got the better of Mitch Kupchak and the Lakers, and that Ainge is hopeful that Payton will join the team eventually. Mark Murphy looks at the Celtics signing Tom Gugliotta. Springer also has a look at the signing of Gugliotta. With Ainge making all these moves, Lenny Megliola is finding it hard to keep up. Kevin McNamara also has a look at the moves made by the Celtics. Murphy’s notebook has Ainge trying to smooth things over with Marcus Banks. Bob Ryan says the US Basketball team got an easy bracket draw, but that’s still not enough to say they’re going to get a medal.

Bill Griffith looks at the Olympic Games opening ceremonies beating the Sox and Patriots on Friday night. He also looks at Eddie Andelman’s on-air apology yesterday, noting that it sounded “stilted” on the show. John Molori also has a detailed look at the Andelman comments in this week’s Media Blitz.

NESN has Red Sox/Blue Jays at 7:00. Mike Petraglia and John Molori will be among the guests on CN8 Sports Pulse at 10:00.

08.16.04 Afternoon

Eddie Andelman led off his show on WWZN today with an apology to anyone who may have been offended by his comments last week. He said it was an emotional topic that probably shouldn’t have been brought on-air. He said he feels he’s earned some trust with 35 years on radio, and hopes to continue earning that trust for a long time to come. He was clearly hurriedly reading a statement and when finished with it moved onto talking about his family’s experience at Fenway yesterday. Eddie may not have meant to offend anyone, but he did so, and his apology is actually more than was expected from this space. It shows that someone does care what is said on the airwaves of 1510.

More stories on yesterday’s Red Sox loss. Win Bates says it was once again close but no cigar for the Red Sox. Chaz Scoggins uses the same expression in describing the loss. Mike Fine says that the Red Sox have not really turned the corner as we all thought they might’ve. Garry Brown says the one run losses continue to mount for the Red Sox. Gary Fitz has a Red Sox notebook looking at the play that resulted in injury for Kevin Youkilis. Fine’s notebook looks at Bronson Arroyo. Brown’s notebook has Orlando Cabrera enjoying his stay at Fenway, and hoping to increase his production.

Glen Farley looks at Daniel Graham, trying to grab hold of his opportunity in camp.

Word is that the Celtics have signed Tom Gugliotta.