Rough Night All Around at Fenway

It was a rough weekend for the Red Sox, as they dropped two out of three to the Angels, including last night’s 10-4 whipping of Curt Schilling and company. The Sox were dangerously close to being swept over the weekend, as it took a late inning rally to salvage the one win in the series on Saturday.

Gordon Edes reports from Fenway about the game, the injury to Trot Nixon and all the trade rumors swirling around the club which have players on edge in the clubhouse. Michael Silverman looks at a night of just all bad news for the Red Sox. Bill Ballou reports on a night of precious little good cheer at Fenway Park. Joe McDonald has more on the Angels handing Curt Schilling his first home loss of the season. Tommy Hine has more on Curt Schilling getting rocked at Fenway Park last night. Scott Barboza also reports on Schilling perfect home record coming to an end thanks to seven extra base hits by the Angels against him.

Sean McAdam looks at the trade-rumor mill, and reports that those close to Roger Clemens claim he is sorry he picked the Astros over the Red Sox, and would love to be dealt to Boston, but will not ask the team to trade him. Alex Speier looks at Red Sox players getting dizzy with all the trade rumors swirling around them. Jon Couture has Terry Francona very comfortable with his team even if no further moves are made. Steve Buckley says that the injury to Trot Nixon last night might throw a wrench in to the Red Sox trade plans. Nick Cafardo reports on the Yankees acquiring Bobby Abreu, someone whom the Red Sox had been rumored to covet. Buckley gets opinions from the Red Sox clubhouse on the trade that netted the Yankees Abreu.

Amalie Benjamin has Curt Schilling extremely disappointed in his outing last night which saw him give up three home runs in an inning for the first time since 1997. Stephen Krasner has more on Schilling’s rough night, in which he kept battling despite his struggles. Lenny Megliola also reports on the shelling of Schilling.

Kelsie Smith reports on the injury to Nixon, which might leave the Red Sox outfield – and trade options – up in the air. Mark Murphy has more on the right biceps injury or Nixon, which could have him out for a while. Matt Kalman reports on yet more bad news, as Keith Foulke had to be scratched from his rehab appearance in Pawtucket yesterday. Kevin McNamara also has a report on Foulke. Murphy also notes that the Red Sox will be counting heavily on David Wells’ return to the rotation, which begins tonight against the Indians.

Edes’ notebook looks at the trade rumors around Mike Lowell and Mark Loretta, and has an update on Manny Delcarmen’s sore thumb. Silverman’s notebook looks at a rumored three way deal between the Red Sox, Rockies and Padres. The Projo notebook (or Red Sox Journal as they call it today) has a look at David Wells taking the mound for the Red Sox tonight. Hine’s notebook says Terry Francona hopes that the Indians don’t try to bunt their way on against David Wells and his rehabbing knee. Ballou’s notebook has Terry Francona remaining mum and any possible moves.

Patriots

Jerome Solomon says that one reason for the increased number of two-a-days in training camp this year is for the players to spend more time working on the fundamentals, something that Bill Belichick feels last years club came a short on. John Tomase looks at the training camp kicking battle of which rookie Stephen Gostkowski is participating. Tom E Curran has a look at Eric Warfield as the veteran tries to adjust to the Patriots system. Michael Parente has Warfield hoping to get a clean slate with the Patriots, and getting help from Tebucky Jones in learning the system.

Michael Felger wonders if the Patriots have enough depth at wide receiver. Alan Greenberg has Tom Brady extra focused with the longer offseason this year and confident he has the tools to succeed with this team. Albert Breer has Corey Dillon being as salty as ever this training camp. Bob Halloran says there is no room for emotion in the NFL.

Felger also says that Hawkins could be a key in the Patriots secondary, perhaps allowing Eugene Wilson to return to cornerback. Jennifer Toland says that Hawkins could also be filling in for Rodney Harrison if he is unable to start the season on the field for the Patriots. Curran also says that the Patriots defense works best as a group effort, with all players trusting each other. David Brown has old-timers Chad and Troy Brown imparting their NFL knowledge to the younger players on the roster. Ron Borges reports that the search for a new NFL commissioner is down to five candidates.

The Globe Notebook has Warfield diligently trying to pick up the Patriots system. Tomase’s notebook has Corey Dillon receiving the support of the fans in attendance yesterday. Toland’s notebook has Dillon feeling fine about his conditioning.

Highlights from the Weekend:

Kevin Paul Dupont had a very good feature on 19th century African-American baseball player Frank Grant, who was among those inducted into the Hall of Fame yesterday. Tony Massarotti’s Covering All Bases checked out the baseball playoff races, where, wouldn’t you know it, the wildcard might just come out of the AL East once again after another year spent with all the “experts” saying it wouldn’t. Rob Bradford had a look at how players like Mike Lowell deal with the rumors at the trading deadline. Nick Cafardo led off his Baseball Notes talking to five figures in the game about of baseball about what team they wouldn’t want to face in the playoffs. Maureen Mullen caught up with former Red Sox reliever Jeff Gray, 15 years after the stroke that ended his career. Lots of praise for Manny’s defense in the Red Sox Notebook from Sunday in the Herald.

Bruce Mohl of the Globe had an interview with Jim Holzman, president of Ace Ticket, and discussed the sometimes questionable tactics used by ticket resellers.

Mike Reiss had the Football Notes and checked in with things up in Buffalo with Marv Levy. Tom E Curran looked at Eugene Wilson showing his versatility by playing both cornerback and safety. Tony Massarotti had a look at Tedy Bruschi attacking training camp with zeal and vengeance. Albert Breer’s Patriots Beat said that the 2005 rookie class has to step into bigger roles this season. Ron Borges had a pair of very good articles over the weekend. Saturday he reports on Bill Belichick lamenting how the “Oklahoma Drill” isn’t prominently featured in NFL training camps any more, and on Sunday, had Chad Brown talking about his return to the Patriots and where he is in his career. John Tomase had more on Belichick pining for Oklahoma.

Mark Murphy’s NBA Notes say that the Celtics are a bit stuck now that the 76ers say that Allen Iverson is not on the trade market. Peter May checked out the rebuilding of the Indiana Pacers in the Basketball Notes. Scott Souza in his Courtside View had a look at Craig Smith as the former Boston College forward prepares for his shot in the NBA with the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The BSMW Power Play crew checked in with a look at the players the Bruins have added during this offseason. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell had a look at the Bruins hiring of Jim Benning as the club’s director of player personnel in her Hockey Notes. Benning had been the Sabres’ director of amateur scouting. Stephen Harris’ NHL Notes had a look at how the Bruins new roster could benefit Wayne Primeau.

NESN has Red Sox/Indians at 7:00.

Weekend Watch – Trade Deadline Weekend

The Red Sox take on the Angels in a big series this weekend at Fenway Park. Keep up with the coverage on the Red Sox Daily Links page, and get the view from the opposition in the pages of the Los Angeles Times and the Los Angeles Daily News. Expect plenty of trade talk this weekend as well, with the MLB trading deadline coming up on Monday.

The Red Sox will be featured in both National games this weekend as tomorrow’s game is on FOX and Sunday is on ESPN. Viewers on Sunday will be reprieved of having to listen to Joe Morgan alongside Jon Miller as Morgan will be attending the Hall of Fame induction in the afternoon. Orel Hershiser will fill in for Morgan and Bonnie Bernstein will be the third member of the crew as she continues to fill in for Peter Gammons.

* Now that training camp is upon us, there will be daily stories in the papers on the Patriots. Keep up with them on the Patriots Daily Links page. Be sure to also check out the Patriots Game Day Page, the full training camp preview is now posted, including a position-by-position examination of the roster.

* A shout out to the Football Outsiders, who celebrate their third anniversary today. The site continues to grow nicely into their role as the gridiron version of Baseball Prospectus, and founder Aaron Schatz is an under-used resource for local TV and radio programming.

* Nice to hear Sean McDonough on the local radio this week as he guest hosted alongside Michael Holley. We could’ve used less lament from McDonough over losing the Red Sox gig to Don Orsillo, but all in all, it was good to have Sean back on the radio.

Of course, Glenn Ordway, Pete Sheppard and company proved themselves to be the class acts that we all know them to be by not participating in a “crossover” segment between the two shows and then making fun of and ripping McDonough once safely ensconced in their own program.

* It was also great to hear Gary Gillis on Friday in with Holley. Since leaving Channel 7 Gillis has been out of the sports media eye, to the point that Gerry Callahan joked during the crossover that he thought Gillis had died.

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* New on the bookshelves this month is Interviews from Red Sox Nation by David Laurila. It is a compilation of interviews that he has done for the RedSoxNation.net web site. It includes dozens of interviews from players from minor league prospects to Red Sox legends as well as media figures and long time fans and observers. The book is published by Maple Street Press and is available now.

National Media Columns

Lots of Harold Reynolds items sprinkled among these links:

Jim Baker, Nashua Telegraph – Media returns to normal after two Americans take wins abroad.

Richard Sandomir, New York Times – Statistics on the Spot for Yankees’ Broadcasts.

Andrew Marchand, New York Post -There’s A Tough Road Ahead For Reynolds.

Andrew Marchand, New York PostCall It The Wayne Event: Chrebet Eyed For SNY Jet Shows.

Neil Best, New York Newsday – Boss still draws rabid attention.

Bob Raissman, New York Daily News – Sid (Rosenberg) may soon sign back on.

Michael McCarthy, USA Today – NFL, cable operators square off.

Teddy Greenstein, Chicago Tribune – ESPN reporter regrets Soriano ‘scoop’.

Aaron Bracy, Courier Post – Starting 30th year, (Merrill) Reese still has love for game.

Bob Smizik, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette – Pirates nearing radio deal.

Laura Nachman, Bucks County Courier Times – Gudel still cooking on Comcast SportsNet.

Jane McManus, Westchester Journal News – Blogs blurring the lines.

Roger Brown, Cleveland Plain Dealer – FSN Ohio talks exclusive with Cavs.

Jim Sarni, South Florida Sun Sentinel – Boog and Zaslow are radio’s dynamic duo.

Dave Darling, Orlando Sentinel – ESPN knows countdowns.

Judd Zulgad, Minneapolis Star-Tribune – Gophers’ radio airwaves will become a beer-free zone.

Chris Zelkovich, Toronto Star – TV poker holds hot hand.

David Barron, Houston Chronicle – Houston Symphony to tackle music of NFL.

Dan Caesar, St. Louis Post-Dispatch – KTRS soars, but KMOX is No. 1.

Michael Lev, Orange County Register – (Al) Michaels turns page in broadcasting life.

Jim Carlisle, Ventura County Star – NBC’s pregame show strives to be different.

Larry Stewart, Los Angeles Times – Replay Edit Wasn’t a Conspiracy.

Tom Hoffarth, Los Angeles Daily News – He’s in town for his favorite thing.

Jay Posner, San Diego Union Tribune – Don’t look for sports fix at 7/39, at least not at 5.

Patriots Pitching PUP Tents

The Patriots start training camp today for the 2006 season, and what promises to be an interesting year begins with 10 players landing on the PUP list to start camp. Deion Branch won’t be there today, but Laurence Maroney will be.

Get your season kicked off with the BSMW Game Day crew, who kick around a few issues on the minds of the fans as camp begins. Check back later today for an offensive and defensive preview.

Albert Breer broke the news last night that first round pick Maroney and the Patriots have agreed on a five year contract. This means all rookies are signed and will be on hand to start camp. Jerome Solomon rehashes the Branch situation and also reports on the contract for Maroney. Albert Breer also addressed the Branch holdout and the reasons behind it for both sides. Michael Parente also examines the Branch situation.

Tom E Curran looks at Bill Belichick as the coach begins his seventh training camp with the Patriots, and notes that after week three, he will become the teams all time leader in games coached. John Tomase has an optimistic preview to start camp, but feels there are five or so issues that need to be ironed out for this team to be really successful. Alan Greenberg updates us on who is healing and who is holding out for the Patriots. Ian Clark has a look at positions in transition for the Patriots and who might step up to fill bigger roles for the team. Eric McHugh has 10 pressing questions facing the team if they hope to get to Super Bowl XLI in Miami. Parente also offers up a special teams preview to kick off camp.

Curran’s notebook throws a new wrinkle into the Branch negotiations. The agent for the holdout wide receiver has stated that Branch will report to camp without a new deal if the Patriots promise not to use the Franchise tag on him next spring. The Globe notebook details the players placed in the PUP list to begin camp, and also looks at Chad Brown rejoining the fold. Tomase’s notebook looks at the same matters, as well as the release of linebacker Ryan Claridge.

The Red Sox have a big weekend series with the red hot Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim starting tonight. Gordon Edes has a preview of the series, which looks to be a competitive one at Fenway Park the next three days. Jeff Horrigan looks at rookie starter Jon Lester, who looks to be more efficient and keep his pitch count down in future outings, starting tonight. Bill Ballou says that this weekend’s series will feature a number of impressive young arms on display.

Karen Guregian looks at an amazing rookie class out there in baseball, and notes that Jonathan Papelbon might have a tough time taking home any postseason hardware. David Heuschkel takes a quick snapshot of the Red Sox and looks ahead to the rest of the season. Ron Chimelis wonders if the Red Sox rotation could be their downfall. Jessie Noyes looks at David Ortiz’s new role as corporate pitchman.

Steve Buckley says that the Red Sox should not include any of their top prospects in a deadline trade this weekend. Sean McAdam notes that competition is stiff in the trade market right now. The Herald looks at deadline deals since 1986 made by the Sox, highlighting four that helped and four that didn’t.

Horrigan’s notebook reports on Javier Lopez getting recalled from Pawtucket and has a number of other items of note. Edes’ notebook looks at Mike Lowell as a candidate for the AL Gold Glove award at third base. Nick Cafardo has a minor league notebook focusing on the Red Sox second round pick from last month, Justin Masterson who is pitching for Lowell.

Paul Gaeta offers up some fantasy baseball advice.

David Scott has a wide ranging edition of Scott Shots, where he examines Bob Hohler’s “$neaker War” series, the competition on the Patriots beat and a follow-up to NESN’s out of market issues. Fluto Shinzawa looks at TV networks’ attempts to deliver “clean” broadcasts – something that doesn’t always happen as TNT can attest to.

Frank Lays a Hurtin’

The Red Sox couldn’t finish off the sweep of the A’s, dropping the series finale 5-1 yesterday afternoon in Oakland. After pounding out 18 hits the previous night, the Red Sox were held to four hits yesterday.

Gordon Edes looks at Frank Thomas putting a hurt on the Sox with two homers in the win for the A’s. Jeff Horrigan notes that for the third time in four starts the fifth inning was the undoing of Kyle Snyder. Sean McAdam reports on the Red Sox managing only a feeble attack in their loss yesterday. David Heuschkel notes that other than two pitches to Thomas, Snyder had a decent outing for the Red Sox.

You knew this was coming…Lenny Megliola invites Roger Clemens to come back to the Red Sox since the Astros seem intent on wasting each one of his starts. Karen Guregian insists that Theo Epstein needs to “step up” and deliver a starting pitcher to the Sox before Monday’s trade deadline.

Amalie Benjamin has Doug Mirabelli having hard time coming up with anything that Kyle Snyder did wrong in his start yesterday. Guregian also has a look at Jermaine Van Buren, who pitched a scoreless seventh inning yesterday, including a strikeout of Thomas. Horrigan reports on Kason Gabbard getting sent back down to Pawtucket after yesterday’s game.

Check the Bay Area Sports Pages for Oakland/San Francisco coverage.

Edes’ notebook takes a peek at the 2007 schedule for the Red Sox, which includes four trips to the West coast. Horrigan’s notebook has Keith Foulke heading to Lowell and then Pawtucket this weekend for a couple rehab outings. McAdam’s notebook reports that Foulke could return to the Red Sox as soon as Monday. Heuschkel’s notebook looks at the frustrations of Foulke, who might consider retirement at the end of the year should this latest comeback not go well.

John Tomase has a very good article this morning on the two tight end offense, something that could be a prime weapon for the Patriots this coming season. The Herald also gets Pat Kirwan to describe how this offense can cause problems for an defense. Jerome Solomon offers up his camp preview, taking a position-by-position look at what we can expect in the next five weeks. Michel Parente examines the defensive backs in his latest camp preview.

Tom E Curran says that the only person exploiting Deion Branch is his agent, who he says is giving the Patriots wide receiver bad advice. Tomase’s notebook has Branch’s agent not backing off his stance, and insisting Branch will not be in camp. Dan Pires also reports on Branch. Larry Phung reports on Rosevelt Colvin working to raise money for Easter Seals.

Alan Greenberg has an AFC preview, wondering if Dante Culpepper is enough for the Dolphins to overtake the Patriots in the East. Eric McHugh has 10 questions and answers about the AFC as well.

Mark Murphy reports on the Celtics signing undrafted free agent Kevin Pittsnogle. Shira Springer also has a brief report on the signing.

Michael Vega talks to former BC star Troy Bell, who prepares to make his boxing debut while waiting for his NBA career to take off. Kevin Gray chronicles what it is like to step in the box against 63 year old Tommy John. I think Bob Halloran is attempting to answer his critics, but I can’t be sure.

Check the New York Sports Pages to keep up with the Yankees and other NY sports.

John Molori’s Media Blitz catches up with the very first voice of the Red Sox on NESN, Kent Derdivanis. David Scott reports that Nancy Marrapese-Burrell is off the Bruins beat, switching roles with Fluto Shinzawa.

ESPN has Cardinals/Cubs at 8:00. The Red Sox are off today.

Manny, Trot Bash A’s

The Red Sox made it two in a row over the Oakland A’s as they thumped Ken Macha’s club 13-5 last night, giving Curt Schilling his 13th win, which ties him with Josh Beckett for the league lead. Manny Ramirez and Trot Nixon homered in the win for the Sox.

Sean McAdam looks at the Red Sox making an all out assault on Oakland pitching last night. David Heuschkel reports on Manny and Trot Nixon leading the attack. Jeff Horrigan looks at Manny once again coming up big for the Red Sox in the win, and notes the huge difference between Manny of now and Manny of last year’s trade deadline. Gordon Edes reports on the Sox pounding out a season high 18 hits in support of Schilling.

Gerry Callahan says that the A-Rod near-deal of the winter of 2003 is the greatest non-trade in Red Sox history. Callahan notes how Manny handles the pressure of playing in Boston just fine, has more home runs and RBI than A-Rod since the non-trade and Jon Lester is 5-0. All this while A-Rod is getting booed nightly in New York.

Karen Guregian has the Sox hoping that David Wells is able to be the trading deadline pitching pickup they need to plug into their rotation. Amalie Benjamin has Trot Nixon hoping that his home run last night will provide a spark to his power hitting. The right fielder feels he needs to be a little more angry in the batter’s box. Garry Brown says that if history is any indicator, we can expect that Theo Epstein will make some sort of deal before the trading deadline on Monday. Jon Couture says that the Red Sox need more than simply pitching in the trade market. He also looks at what the other contending clubs’ needs are.

Guregian also talks to Wily Mo Pena, who really hopes to stay in Boston and get the chance to show the fans what he can do. Benjamin has Mike Timlin teaching visualization to the young Red Sox pitchers, something he learned from Jamie Moyer. Guregian also reports on Curt Schilling joining Beckett in the 13 win club.

Check out the coverage of the game from the Oakland/San Francisco area on the Bay Area Sports Pages.

Horrigan’s notebook reports on Wells getting very close to being activated and put into the rotation. Edes’s notebook has more on Wells, who appears to be headed for the rotation as soon as next week. McAdam’s notebook looks at how Manny Delcarmen has been a godsend for the Red Sox bullpen. Heuschkel’s notebook has more on Wells closing in on a return.

Steve Bailey reports on Aramark Corp fingerprinting every employee who works at Fenway Park.

Chad Finn examines a number of topics in the headlines as of late.

Ron Borges reports that Deion Branch will not report to Patriots training camp on Friday and will be a hold out, despite the $14,000-per-day fine. Alan Greenberg says that things will be a lot different for the Patriots this training camp, with no championship to defend, no winning streak to extend and having to deal with the loss of several key players. John Tomase takes a position-by-position look at the defense. Mike Reiss takes a look at the cornerback position for the Patriots. Michael Parente says that Monty Beisel needs to take a giant step forward in his second year with the Patriots. Eric McHugh steps up with 10 questions and answers about the NFC heading into training camps.

Stephen Harris and Nancy Marrapese-Burrell report on Peter Chiarelli starting to fill out the front office and coaching staff of his new administration. Kirk Luedeke of the New England Hockey Journal reports that the Bruins have come to terms on a new one year contract for defenseman Milan Jurcina.

Mike Fine hopes that the Celtics do not trade for Allen Iverson. CelticsBlog.com examines a report that the Celtics have given a two-year deal to former West Virginia big man Kevin Pittsnogle. Peter May reports on the US national team wrapping up their first week of practice yesterday.

Check out the New York Sports Pages to keep up with the Yankees and more coverage on Harold Reynolds’ dismissal from ESPN.

NESN has Red Sox/A’s at 3:30. ESPN has Yankees/Rangers at 8:00.

Boston Bats Bolster Beckett

The Red Sox bounced back from a tough loss in Seattle on Sunday by bashing three home run in support of Josh Beckett in a 7-3 win last night against the Oakland A’s. Alex Gonzalez, Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz all went deep, while Beckett recorded his league leading 13th victory.

Jeff Horrigan looks at the Red Sox getting a little retribution against the A’s. Gordon Edes reports on Manny rewarding his manager’s defense of him on Sunday with his bounce-back play last night. Sean McAdam opens his game story noting that the Red Sox have hit more home runs on the road than at home this season. David Heuschkel starts his narrative off with the same information.

Amalie Benjamin looks at a solid outing for Beckett, who got roughed up by the A’s the last time he faced them. Karen Guregian also looks at Beckett, who didn’t watch any of the film from his last start against Oakland while preparing for this one. Horrigan says that despite holding onto first place, the Red Sox still have a lot of problems and question marks. McAdam looks at Trot Nixon, who is at a loss to explain his power outage.

Benjamin also reports on David Wells pitching a simulated game yesterday, and looking pretty sharp (and competitive) doing it. Guregian talks to Curt Schilling, who remains adamant that he will retire after next season. She also has a sidebar with Schilling laughing at the Mike Lowell for Jake Peavy trade rumor from last week.

Edes’ notebook has Trot Nixon frustrated with his lack of power numbers and dealing with his name involved in trade rumors. Edes also has some astounding numbers showing just how consistent Manny Ramirez really is. Horrigan’s notebook has more on Wells’ simulated game. McAdam’s notebook says that Kason Gabbard will be skipped in the rotation this week with the off day on Thursday. Heuschkel’s notebook looks at the struggling Coco Crisp, who aims to stay positive.

The Two Cents and a Schilling blog offered some strong commentary on the whole NESN “Out of market” issue from last week. Baseball Prospectus also addressed this issue in detail, though you’ll need a subscription to read the full article.

John Tomase previews the Patriots Offense, a unit led by quarterback Tom Brady. Tomase notes that while the roster is seemingly thin at wide receiver, Brady has no shortage of weapons to use on offense. Mike Reiss looks at Logan Mankins, who will be ready to go come Friday, just as he was for all 16 regular season games last year, one of only three first round picks to start each game last season. Michael Parente has a preview of the defensive line, which might be the deepest position on the team. Ron Borges says that Deion Branch hasn’t decided for sure whether he will be a holdout come Friday, but as of last night he was leaning in that direction. Borges also looks at the five players placed on the PUP list, including Rodney Harrison. Albert Breer reports on the Patriots coming to terms with more rookies, leaving only first round pick Laurence Maroney unsigned at the moment. Reiss also previews the Inside Linebackers in his blog today.

In the latest edition of the BSMW Full Court Press, Jon Duke takes a look at Danny Ainge’s offseason thus far and offers some perspective.

Bob Hohler wraps up his three part “$neaker War” series with the final installment this morning.

Mike Shalin talks to ACC coaches, who all agree that the Boston College football team belongs in their conference. Shalin’s notebook looks at a change in the Bowl selection process, and notes that Billy Flutie might be given a shot to play as a freshman.

For reasons not entirely clear, ESPN has Fired Harold Reynolds. Reynolds was one of the best parts of the Baseball Tonight program and seemed a fixture at the network, even calling the Little League World Series games each summer. ESPN won’t comment, and it appears Reynolds is not welcome around Bristol any longer. (The Big Lead)

NESN has Red Sox/A’s at 10:00.

Sox Slide in Seattle

After taking the first game of the series in Seattle on Friday night, the Red Sox dropped the last games Saturday and Sunday, both being in rather tough fashion. Yesterday’s 9-8 loss was particularly frustrating as both starting and relief pitching struggled for the Sox. Mike Timlin gave up a walkoff shot to Richie Sexton in the bottom of the ninth to give the Mariners the win.

Gordon Edes notes that adventures in the outfield also caused problems for the Red Sox in the loss. Jeff Horrigan calls this one the season’s most deflating loss. Sean McAdam reports on the back and forth, up and down affair from Safeco Field. David Heuschkel writes his story around Manny’s adventures in the outfield.

Karen Guregian also focuses solely on Manny’s awful day in the outfield, even though he was not the only one who looked bad yesterday. Amalie Benjamin reports on a tough afternoon for the Red Sox bullpen as Manny Delcarmen and Mike Timlin were both roughed up a bit. Guregian also looks at Jon Lester not being able to pick up a win in front of his hometown crowd.

Horrigan’s notebook looks at Trot Nixon’s power outage, as the outfielder is hitting for average but no power in his contract year. Edes’ notebook says that despite his rough outing, yesterday was a happy homecoming for Jon Lester in front of his family and friends. McAdam’s notebook also looks at Lester’s disappointing homecoming and also reports that David Wells could be in line to get a start next Sunday for the Sox. Heuschkel’s notebook speculates that Kason Gabbard could’ve been being showcased for a possible trade with his start on Saturday.

Mike Reiss and John Tomase report on Ty Law agreeing to a five year contract with the Kansas City Chiefs. Joanna Weiss in the Globe reports on NBC’s huge investment and hype of Sunday Night Football. Michael Parente has a look at the men charged with protecting Tom Brady as he previews the offensive line heading into camp this Friday. Reiss previews the Outside Linebackers in his camp preview today. An article in the Eagle-Tribune (Hector Longo?) takes a look at Chad Jackson and whether the Patriots second round pick will be a star or another Florida flame out in the pros.

Jim McCabe reports on Tiger Woods winning his 11th Professional Major tournament with his victory yesterday in the 135th British Open. Jim Donaldson says that it is always fun watching greatness at work. Bob Ryan says that Woods was certainly A Man With A Plan and he carried out that plan to perfection this weekend. McCabe’s notebook looks at second place finisher Chris DiMarco, whose play this weekend was a highlight of an especially tough year.

Mick Colageo says that the Bruins need to step up and pay Patrice Bergeron.

CBS4 and Bob Lobel had a sitdown interview with Ted and Jackie Johnson last night where the couple discussed the domestic incident which ended with both of them being arrested last weekend. The CBS4 Website has the video of the interview if you missed it. Jackie Johnson says she takes almost total responsbility for the incident, which she says the police should never have been involved in. She says she did not know what was involved when she called the police. It will be interesting to see the reaction of the local media who came out so strongly against domestic violence in the Brett Myers case. (Very much deservedly so, I might add.) While this case is certainly different, with no independent witnesses available to provide testimony on what really happened, will the media gloss this over because they know Ted Johnson and believe him to be a stand-up guy, or will they come after this case with the same furor they did with Myers? I’m guessing judgment will be reserved as they note that the facts are not all available. This incident will likely do some damage to Johnson’s future marketability, but probably won’t tarnish his image beyond repair. The interview might do a lot towards repairing the perception of Ted Johnson in this incident, I thought they came off as sincere and regretful about the whole thing. (Though David Scott feels differently and makes some good points.)

Bob Hohler has part II of his Sneaker War series, here’s the link to yesterday’s piece if you missed Part One.

Highlights from the Weekend:

Ron Borges’ Football Notes lead off with Deion Branch’s contract situation and how the Patriots have “exploited” NFL rules over the years. If you need a counter to what Borges asserts here, check out Mike Florio on ProFootballTalk.com. Look for the section entitled “Upshaw Slams Pats”. He notes that the Patriots weren’t the first club to start signing rookies to maximum length deals, and that just because a club operates according to the rules doesn’t mean they’re guilty of “exploiting”. Albert Breer of the Metrowest Daily News examines some of the issues facing the Patriots as they begin training camp at the end of this week. Tom E Curran lists out 10 things the Patriots will want to clear up before the end of camp. Ian Clark also had a look at questions facing the Patriots heading into camp. Jennifer Toland says that the status of Deion Branch is going to be the biggest story going into camp for the Patriots. Dan Pires also examines the issues that the Patriots will have to deal with before the season. Chris Kennedy lists out seven points that the Patriots have seven weeks to answer. Parente had a preview of the wide receivers on Sunday.

Steve Bulpett in his NBA Notes has more from Paul Pierce on his new contract with the Celtics. In Courtside View, Scott Souza asserts that the Pierce deal was a no-brainer. Peter May in his Pro Basketball Notes said that Kendrick Perkins should be next in line for a contract extension from the Celtics. In his very first sentence, May essentially refutes the Globe’s “Clarification” of his own column from last week which stated that the option years of NBA contracts are rarely exercised by players.

Art Davidson had a look at Red Sox centerfield prospect Jacoby Ellsbury, who has gotten off to a great start since being promoted to AA Portland. In Nick Cafardo’s Baseball Notes, he speculated that teams might be interested in trading for Wily Mo Pena. Tony Massarotti had an interesting edition of Covering All Bases, where he reports that Terry Francona basically put into motion the series of events that led Josh Beckett to a three year extension with the Red Sox.

Stephen Harris’ NHL Notes updates us on the ongoing saga of Bruins top pick Phil Kessel and whether he will return to college or join the Bruins. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell looked at the chaos that is the New York Islanders in her Pro Hockey Notes. Douglas Flynn’s On Hockey has a look at Natick native Dan LaCouture, who would like to return to the Bruins.

NESN has Red Sox/A’s at 10:00. ESPN has Yankees/Rangers at 7:00.

Weekend Watch – British Open Edition

It’s a rather slow weekend for sports viewing, with only baseball, golf and auto racing on the docket. (There is also the Tour de France which is on OLN at 8:30 AM on Saturday and 7:30 AM on Sunday).

The Red Sox will be in Seattle this weekend. Keep up with the coverage on the Red Sox Daily Links page, as well as in the Seattle Times and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

Today’s Seattle Times had a good article by Larry Stone on Red Sox rookie starter Jon Lester, who grew up a Mariners fan in Tacoma, Washington.

David Scott did a good job covering the NESN/Satellite/Out of Market issue in Scott’s Shots this morning. The Yanksfan vs Soxfan blog also had some strong thoughts on the matter.

WEEI has been crowing about their ratings once again this morning, and truth be told, they have bounced back pretty nicely from a tough winter. However in the overall scheme of things, they remain tied for third in the Boston market behind WBZ and WJMN. The numbers from the Spring ’06 Book also reflect that WEEI remains .08 of a point below the same time period a year ago.

ABC has coverage of the British Open this weekend from the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, England.

The ABC production will include:

* “Only at the Open” segments that will recap shots and elements that seem to be unique to the British Open.
* Players walking through their practice rounds as they prepare for a course they have never seen.
* A segment on what players pack for this trip.
* X-Mo camera, a super slow-motion camera for swing analysis.

Monday will see the debut of Outside the Lines First Report hosted by Bob Ley on ESPN. This 3:30 PM daily show will replace and expand upon the Outside the Lines Nightly show which had aired at 12:40 AM nightly.

ESPN’s weekday afternoon lineup will now look like this:

3:30 p.m. ET – Outside the Lines First Report
4 p.m. – NFL Live
4:30 p.m. – Jim Rome Is Burning
5 p.m. – Around The Horn
5:30 p.m. – Pardon The Interruption
6 p.m. – SportsCenter

Just a week until the Patriots start training camp. Check the latest Patriots news on the Patriots Daily Links page.

Keep up with the sports news from New York, including Yankees coverage on the New York Sports Pages.

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Sports Media Columns from Around the Nation

Jim Baker, Nashua Telegraph – OLN fooled briefly as American rider Landis recovers.

Phil Mushnick, New York Post – Hitting Below The ‘Waste’ – ESPY’s Blew Chance to be Great.

Andrew Marchand, New York Post – BCS Shows May Be ‘Damn’-ed – Fox’s Rose Leads Race for Studio Gig.

Richard Sandomir, New York Times – Wacky Ice Capades Come to Town.
(Islanders challenging Knicks for most dysfunctional sports organization.)

Neil Best, New York Newsday – Ratings rivalry that’s must-see.
(YES vs. SNY)

Bob Raissman, New York Daily News – TBS may pitch to Costas.

Jane McManus, Westchester Journal News – Tirico fills in on British Open broadcast

Michael McCarthy, USA Today – Psst, ABC and TNT, Woods-Faldo feud is a grudge match.

Michael Hiestand, USA Today – Billy Packer influence at this week’s British Open? Sort of.

Laura Nachman, Bucks County Courier Times – How Philly?s leading ladies rate.

Aaron Bracy, Courier Post – FCC defeats Philly fans, then ducks them.

Teddy Greenstein, Chicago Tribune – Quite frankly, Baker bails out – Host denies incendiary e-mail came from staff.

Jim Sarni, South Florida Sun-Sentinel – Landis, Woods giving U.S. something to cheer about.

Rick Harmon, Tampa Tribune – ABC Missing Golden Opportunity.

Chris Zelkovich, Toronto Star – Tour de Floyd? Uh-uh.

David Barron, Houston Chronicle – Time to get with the NFL Network program.

Judd Zulgad, Minneapolis Star-Tribune – Breakup between Twins, WCCO shouldn’t surprise.

Bob Wolfley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel - A small role in NY’s ‘Greatest Days’.

Jim Carlisle, Ventura County Star – British Open an alien game in an alien land.

Michael Lev, Orange County Register – Losing ABC trio is rough for golf.

Larry Stewart, Los Angeles Times – Landis Keeps Hope Alive in Tour.

Given what has appeared in the Boston Herald this week, I think this Gawker post as well as this Boston Magazine article are both good reading.

Sox Head West

David Scott in Scott’s Shots looks at the NESN blackouts of pre and post game shows in markets outside of Boston, an issue that has resulted in a number of emails to this address this week and has generated a huge amount of discussion among out of town fans.

The Red Sox made it four wins in a row yesterday afternoon with their 6-4 win over the Texas Rangers at Fenway Park. Curt Schilling, though not having his best game, pitched well enough for his 12th victory on the season. Mike Timlin worked the ninth for his second save of the season.

Fluto Shinzawa looks at the Red Sox offense coming through after the pitching carried the club through their last two wins. Michael Silverman looks at the Red Sox finishing up their homestand with a flourish before heading to the West coast. Paul Kenyon notes that Schilling was just good enough to get the job done for the Red Sox. Jeff Goldberg looks at the Red Sox squeezing out enough positives to get the win at Fenway. Lenny Megliola reports on a makeshift Red Sox lineup getting the job done yesterday. Garry Brown says this one was a grinder of a ballgame, one that defines team effort. David Borges looks at the Sox heading West on a winning note. Bill Ballou compares Fenway Park to the Statue of Liberty in his game story.

Tony Massarotti says that Mark Loretta deserves a pass for his mistakes yesterday because they were a fluke. Kelsie Smith has more on Loretta, who had three hits, but also had a very rough day on the basepaths, getting thrown out at home after not sliding, and later getting picked off second. Steven Krasner looks at Loretta keeping his focus at the plate despite the blunders on the basepaths.

Alex Speier has a look at the Red Sox 1-2 punch of Curt Schilling and Josh Beckett and how the duo is pushing each other as they sit tied atop the league in wins. Jon Couture says that the Red Sox are going to have to keep scratching their way to wins. Julian Benbow talks to Manny Delcarmen about what Mike Timlin has meant to him, and the rest of the bullpen with all of his experience and savvy. Massarotti has more on Delcarmen, who now has the ability to shake off Jason Varitek according to how his curveball feels in his hand. Krasner and Joe McDonald have a report on Tim Wakefield and his injury status.

Steve Buckley analyzes and dissects the burning issue of uniform numbers. The Red Sox rookie pitchers are wearing some very high uniform numbers. Will they change them if they get a chance? What is involved in changing a uniform number? Are there any great stories in baseball involving uniform numbers? Get answers to all these important questions and more in Buckley’s mini-series. In Part II, he looks at the most popular selling jerseys in the Red Sox team store. Buckley examines other urgent baseball matters such as Doug Mientkiewicz and Keith Foulke whining about returning historic items to the Red Sox while nine-year-old boys will gladly give the ball from Curt Schilling’s 200th victory back to him. That Buckley is really on top of things. (Goldberg also has a look at nine-year-old Danny Russell, who returned the ball to Schilling.)

Shinzawa’s notebook reports on Tim Wakefield’s trip to the disable list, where the knuckleballer should remain for up to a month to allow his cracked rib to heal. Silverman’s notebook has more on Wakefield. The Projo notebook looks at Delcarmen growing into his role as a reliable arm out of the pen for the Sox. Goldberg’s notebook reports on Wakefield and on David Ortiz getting his first day off of the season. Borges’ notebook has more on Wakefield heading to the DL for only the second time in his 14 year MLB career. Ballou’s notebook also reports on Wakefield and his replacement in the rotation. Couture’s notebook has more on Wakefield, looks at what Doug Mirabelli will do while Wakefield is out, and notes the lineup changes yesterday.

Rich Thompson looks at The Minors, focusing on Dustin Pedroia’s play at Pawtucket. Nick Cafardo’s Minor League Notebook looks at Kason Gabbard, who is lined up to get the start tomorrow for the Red Sox in Seattle against the Mariners. Kevin Gray looks at Yankees top prospect Phillip Hughes, who will take the mound tomorrow afternoon in Manchester against the Fisher Cats.

Susan Bickelhaupt has a look at Hazel Mae, who received a contract extension from NESN earlier this week. Bill Doyle looks at NESN’s “What if” production from last night.

Jim Donaldson says watching the Red Sox makes him worry about Tom Brady and the Patriots. Michael Parente notes that the Patriots biggest concern this coming season…and every season…is keeping Tom Brady healthy, especially with no experienced backup in the fold at the moment. The Herald is a year behind in their training camp report, though it does make an interesting thumbnail look at how quickly things can change in a year. (Note: the link has since been removed.)

Nancy Marrapese-Burrell has a feature on new Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli settling into his job of rebuilding the Bruins into a champion.

Steve Bulpett says that the buzz surrounding the Celtics’ pursuit of Allen Iverson has calmed somewhat, and examines the veterans around the league that have been linked to the Celtics in trade rumors.

Jim McCabe looks at Tiger Woods playing his way onto a crowded leaderboard at the British Open. Bob Ryan looks at the greatness that has eluded Sergio Garcia thus far in his career.

Beckett Shines with New Deal

Other than stories on the Red Sox second straight 1-0 win over the Kansas City Royals yesterday, it’s a really slow sports day.

Get the stories on the win and the news of Josh Beckett’s new three year contract extension on the Red Sox Daily Links page.

The Boston Phoenix has more from Seth Mnookinand his book, but they also have a nice little sidebar entitled the Five Dumbest Globe Stories about the Sox.

Bill Reynolds says that Paul Pierce’s new contract is a signal that the Celtics are trying to win now.

Mike Reiss looks at the tights ends today in his training camp preview.

NESN has Red Sox/Rangers at 2:00 (Makeup game). ESPN has Yankees/Blue Jays at 7:00.