Pope Clement Remains Perfect

A strong performance from Matt Clement and some leftover items from the weekend make up a pretty busy Monday edition of the links.

The Red Sox finished a wet series with the Atlanta Braves at Fenway yesterday with a 5-2 win behind a impressive complete game from Matt Clement. Nick Cafardo says that Clement was very clean and tidy in his performance yesterday afternoon. Cafardo also seems to go out of his way in the article to point out twice that despite going 0-4, Edgar Renteria worked the count on John Smoltz a couple times, forcing his pitch count higher. With the trend on the air seeming to be to bash Renteria at any opportunity, it’s good to find someone looking for the positive at least. Tony Massarotti says that it seemed like Clement and Smoltz switched pitching styles for the day, with Smoltz being the one with control issues and high pitch count. Sean McAdam notes that this was quite a contrast from Clement’s last start, out in Oakland. David Heuschkel says that there was no debate in the dugout as to whether Clement should go out in the ninth and finish the game himself or not. David Borges says that the afternoon was a complete success for Clement. Joe Haggerty also has a look at the outing for Clement.

Lenny Megliola says there are some good signs that the sky is brightening for the Red Sox as we near the end of May. Mike Shalin looks at Manny Ramirez appearing to wake up a little bit with a 3-5 afternoon that included a two run homer. John Tomase yesterday had a piece on Manny in which he raised the possibility that either Manny could be on “a precipitous down phase of his career” or that he simply could have a desire problem and is guessing at the plate too much. Howard Bryant (subscription only) looks at Kevin Millar asking the press to get off of Edgar Renteria and asks if the fans are going to boo anyone, it should be him, not the shortstop.

Rich Thompson looks at Bill Mueller’s hot day yesterday against John Smoltz. Marvin Pave looks at Clement’s impressive 5-0 start to his Red Sox career. Massarotti has a brief piece discussing Kevin Youkilis’ impressive play at first base. Paul Harber examines at the continued struggles of Edgar Renteria. Shalin has a quite bit on new assistant coach Mike Barnett, who is impressed with what he’s seen of the team thus far, there’s also another sidebar on Johnny Damon’s plans for Cooperstown. Michael Gee (Subscription only) writes that Clement’s complete game could signify that Terry Francona might use Keith Foulke a little differently until he gets his problems straightened out.

Borges’ notebook looks at Manny seeming to snap out his funk a little bit yesterday. Heuschkel’s notebook has Millar asking people to lay off Renteria. McAdam’s notebook looks at Youkilis looking pretty impressive over at first base yesterday. Massarotti’s notebook has Millar refusing to get the boot. Cafardo’s notebook leads with more on Youkilis.

You knew Dan Shaughnessy was begging for this assignment, and in my opinion he should’ve been the last guy the Globe sent down to the New York to cover Pedro Martinez pitching for the Mets against the Yankees. You know he was praying that Pedro would blow up and that the Yankees would ride roughshod over him. He manages to keep the insults to a minimum, but of course he can’t let a piece go by without mentions of “He Who Must Not Be Named” – very lame. And by the way…Pedro sure looked like he was scared and ducking the Yankees yesterday, didn’t he?

If you missed it yesterday, Mike Reiss had a good article on Patriots linebacker Rosevelt Colvin, who finally feels completely healed from his broken hip from 2003 and is looking forward a bigger role in the Patriot defense this season. Desmond Conner reports on Bill Belichick receiving his honorary doctorate from Wesleyan University. The big news over the weekend was the return of Troy Brown to the fold. One thing that bugged me in the coverage of it however was the constant references by sports anchors and hosts to the claim that Brown had been “released” earlier in the offseason by the team. This may be a minor point, but it is simply not true. The team declined to exercise the outsized option for this year on Brown’s contract, making him a free agent. There’s a difference. As I said, it may seem to be a minor point, but these people are professionals and should be accurate in their reporting of what happened.

Frank Dell’Apa has Eric Wynalda singing the praises of the Revolution’s Tyler Twellman. Wynalda, the US national team all time leading scorer, believes that Twellman will break his record someday. Of course, he has to still make the team, and according to Gus Martins, the US coach doesn’t appear to be all that impressed with Twellman.

Yesterday, Bill Burt spoke with Al Jefferson’s high school coach about the future for the Celtics forward. Peter May looks at the questions around Shaquille O’Neal going into tonight’s game one of the Eastern Conference finals.

A couple items on the Bob Lobel lawsuit against ”Get Fuzzy” comic strip creator Darby Conley, United Feature Syndicate, and the New Bedford Standard-Times. First, BSMW reader “Feejis” has some thoughts on how the local Boston sports media has reacted to this incident, and I believe he raises many good points in his analysis. I would highly recommend a read of this article. Also Michael Feldman has some thoughts on the comic strip and Lobel in his blog, he also includes the original cartoon in case you missed it.

More on Lobel…Sports Final last night which celebrated 25 years on the air at the station was pretty much a home run. The 25 minute highlight package was outstanding, showing the highs and lows of Boston sports from the last quarter century, with many of Lobel’s sportscast from the events. After the highlights, the Three Bobs of Boston sports media, Lobel, Ryan and Neumeier (sorry Bob Hohler) gave their thoughts on the last 25 years and what stood out the most. Bob Ryan’s most vivid memory was the Snow Bowl game, and he singled that out as the night he’d most like to re-live. Neumeier focused on the tragedies and untimely deaths of Len Bias and Reggie Lewis and covering those. I also enjoyed following the program, the various advertisments from over the years that Lobel had done with Ted Williams, Bobby Orr and others. The one where he gets checked by a Bruins player against the boards and spits out a few teeth was one of the funniest.

TNT has Pistons/Heat at 8:00.