Update: Bill Barnwell has a new column posted on the Patriots Game Day page, this week looking at whether the “running back by committee” approach such as the Patriots might appear to be going with has any advantages over the traditional one-lead-back approach.
David Ortiz made history for the Red Sox last night, hitting his 50th home run of the season in an 8-2 loss to the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park.
Michael Silverman looks at Big Papi tying the club record in a loss that clinched the division for the New York Yankees. Amalie Benjamin says that last night, all the disappointment of the game and the season didn’t matter. It was all about Papi. Steven Krasner has more on Big Papi joining Jimmie Foxx atop the Red Sox record books. David Heuschkel has Torii Hunter feeling good for his former teammate and what he’s been able to accomplish here. David Borges says that it is appropriate that Ortiz’s home run gave the Red Sox the lead. (temporarily) Phil O’Neill reports on the blast, which created a bittersweet night for the Red Sox. Jon Couture has more on the night from Fenway. (Nice redesign for the Standard-Times/SouthCoastToday.com website.)
Steve Buckley has a look at the Twins, who despite being a small market club, boast a roster full of stars. Alex Speier says that the Red Sox are going to need to overhaul their bullpen this offseason, something that is no easy task. Speier also wonders if Keith Foulke will be closing for the Red Sox in 2007.
Buckley also says that Double X would’ve been proud of Ortiz. Silverman looks at the negotiations between the club and the fan who caught the home run that tied Foxx’s record. Lenny Megliola looks a the Ortiz mark as a highlight of an otherwise rag-tag September.
Tony Chamberlain looks at Peter Gammons coming back home to Fenway Park.
Silverman’s notebook has Matt Clement feeling that he is a starting pitcher and not really warming to the idea of moving to the bullpen next season. Benjamin’s notebook has the MRI done on Manny Ramirez coming back clean, ruling out a fracture, so the only thing to do for his patellar tendonitis is rest. It should be noted that John Valentin suffered with the same thing, and eventually ruptured the tendon, which effectively ended his career as a full time, productive player. Krasner’s notebook looks at Curt Schilling trying to shake off the rust in his outing last night. Heuschkel’s notebook has Julian Tavarez saying that Manny is definitely done for the season. Borges’ notebook says that Craig Hansen isn’t close to being ready to take over for Jonathan Papelbon as the Red Sox closer next season. O’Neill’s notebook has Curt Schilling showing signs of life last night.
Mike Reiss looks at the 11-up blitz, which has foiled the Patriots a few times now, including last week against the Jets and in the playoffs against Denver. John Tomase examines how Champ Bailey and the Broncos trapped Tom Brady into throwing the key interception in last winter’s playoff game. Shalise Manza Young looks at the last thing offenses want to do, which is turning the ball over. The Patriots hope to avoid a repeat of their last outing against the Broncos. Chris Kennedy looks at the Patriots and Broncos mixing things up this time around. Ian Clark notes that the Patriots can’t dwell on their recent struggles against the Broncos. Jeff Howe has the Patriots reviewing their nightmare night in Denver last winter.
Alan Greenberg notes that the Patriots depth on the defensive line allows them to play more 4-3 this season which could actually serve to get rest for certain players. Tony Massarotti looks at the Patriots offensive line having fun with the running game and being able to get out and hit people.Tomase says a highlight for Sunday night with be Logan Mankins and Ebenezer Ekuban renewing acquaintances in the trenches. Jennifer Toland has Tom Brady ready to move on from the playoff loss. Michael Parente looks at the Patriots duo of Corey Dillon and Laurence Maroney and how they make up something that this team hasn’t had.
Albert Breer has a look at Mike Wright, whose emergence and versatility on the defensive line has made him a bigger piece to the Patriots defense this season. Dan Pires looks at how the undrafted Wright fits in with all the first round picks that surround him on the defensive line.
Breer has Stephen Gostkowski’s teammates not blaming him for the blocked field goal against the Jets. Massarotti has Bill Belichick speaking about Jake Plummer, who has come under fire early in the season. Eric McHugh offers up a report card for the Patriots against the Jets.
Tomase’s notebook revisits Cedric Cobbs’ comments about Bill Belichick, which come off as sour grapes. Reiss’ notebook has Tom Brady hoping to raise the level of his game in this, the third week of the season. Young’s notebook has Bailey and Mike Shanahan praising Benjamin Watson for his hustle play on the Bailey interception and runback in the playoff game. Toland’s notebook has Tedy Bruschi pleased with his return and glad to be back on the field. Parente’s notebook has Brady looking for an improved connection with his receivers.
David Ferris offers up some fantasy football advice in the Herald.
Jackie MacMullan writes about Bruins first round pick Phil Kessel and whether he is ready to make the team and play in the NHL as an 18 year old. Stephen Harris reports on the Bruins preseason game with Montreal last night in which Zdeno Chara took a shot off the foot and eventually left the game, though he wanted to continue. Fluto Shinzawa and Dan Hickling have more on the injury to Chara and the game. Bud Barth has the story of goaltender Jordan Sigalet.
Steve Bulpett has Wally Szczerbiak eager to have a whole season with the Celtics.
Bob Ryan looks at the evolution of the Ryder Cup from a gentleman’s event to a competitive one. Jim McCabe looks at the US squad taking practice as a team yesterday. George Kimball has Tiger Woods speaking out against a Dublin tabloid for things said about his wife. McCabe’s notebook looks at fans being disappointed due to adverse conditions at the club yesterday.
Bob Hohler has a feature on racial inequities among the coaching ranks in college football, both nationally and in New England. He has a quick bit on the only black head college football coach in New England, Mel Mills of Division 3 Becker College. He also quickly looks back at the first to break the color barrier in New England college football, Boston State College’s MacDaniel Singleton in 1975.
NESN has Twins/Red Sox at 7:00. ESPN has Virgina/Georgia Tech at 7:30. TBS has Braves/Rockies at 8:30.