More Thoughts on Crawford, ‘roids.

I received a number of outstanding entries in the “Be Dan Shaughnessy” contest yesterday. It’s amazing how well some of you have his style down pat. If you’re planning on entering (You don’t have a do a complete column, 3-4 paragraphs will do), please get your entry to me by the end of the weekend. As mentioned, we’ll have a nice prize or two for the winner.

John Tomase talks to a number of players who were on the Red Sox during the time Paxton Crawford was around, including Mike Stanley, John Valentin and Jeff Frye, all deny that steroids were being used by members of the team and claim that Crawford is making stuff up, that he wasn’t around the big league clubhouse long enough to know what the veterans were doing. Jim Fennell talks to a couple members of the Nashua Pride, whom Crawford pitched for in 2003, who aren’t really surprised at his admissions. Art Martone notes that baseball has a long history of cheating, and includes a quote from 1969’s Ball Four, which would seem to sum up the feeling of players even today. The subject of Paxton Crawford and steroids is also the topic of a Boston Globe Editorial this morning.

Gordon Edes and Michael Silverman each have stories on Bronson Arroyo, whose manager on the Reds says it’s an “automatic” that he’ll start the All Star game for the NL and is a potential Cy Young candidate. Arroyo says he has no bitterness against Boston and would like to pitch for the Red Sox again some day.

Jeff Horrigan reports on Kevin Youkilis, who is making the most of finally being an everyday major league player. David Heuschkel also focuses on Youkilis, who is often the subject of ribbing from his teammates, including Manny Ramirez. Phil O’Neill has more on Youkilis, who has been better than anticipated in almost every facet of the game. Tomase has a look at Trot Nixon putting up big numbers in his (surprise) contract year. Ron Chimelis examines the Red Sox success in interleague play this season. Mike Fine has a look at Jon Lester, and another at David Ortiz. Chimelis also has an interesting article on sidearm pitchers, of which Josh Papelbon is one.

Bob Ryan reports on Roger Clemens’ first game since coming off his three month sabbatical.

Chris Snow’s notebook looks at how and why the Red Sox are feasting on National League competition. (Reasons which could also explain Arroyo’s success.) Horrigan’s notebook reports on the Red Sox signing their top draft pick, high school outfielder Jason Place. The 18-year-old says he models his hitting style after Albert Pujols and his fielding after Andruw Jones and Jim Edmonds.

Snow’s minor league notebook has a look at AA pitcher Chris Smith, who seems to be overlooked when talking about the Red Sox pitching prospects. Rich Thompson’s minor league notebook has a look at the potent Pawtucket double play combination of Alejandro Machado and Dustin Pedroia.

Steve Conroy looks at Joe Thornton winning the Hart Trophy as NHL MVP. That one hurts. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell says that all signs point to Mike Sullivan being out as Bruins head coach. Mike Loftus has more on Sullivan waiting to hear his fate. Joe McDonald also looks at Sullivan’s wait. Kevin Paul Dupont looks at one of the potential Bruins selections in Phil Kessel. Stephen Harris looks at Waltham’s Brian Strait, who should be the first New Englander picked in the NHL draft. Christopher Hurley looks at another local, Joey Ryan, who should also be selected. Conroy’s notebook reports on the Bruins likely losing their director of Pro scouting to the Los Angeles Kings.

Steve Bulpett tries to figure out which direction Danny Ainge is going to go with the #7 pick in next week’s NBA draft. Scott Souza also has a look at what Ainge might be trying to do with his top selection.

Albert Breer says that the Patriots were not present at workouts for Virginia linebacker Ahmad Brooks, who will be available in a July 13th supplemental draft. Yesterday, Breer had a good profile of Brooks, who had been thrown off the Virginia squad by head coach Al Groh. We’ll have more from Breer this afternoon…