Marquise Hill 1982-2007

Patriots defensive end Marquise Hill hadn’t yet shown a lot on the field in his three-year NFL career, but according to reports, Hill made this play of his life this weekend just before he lost a struggle with the waters of Lake Pontchartrain in New Orleans Sunday night.

April Simpson and Michael Levenson have the story in the Globe, while John Tomase and Jessica Heslam have the coverage in the Herald of this tragedy.

Mike Reiss has Hill being remembered as fun loving and positive behind the scenes by his Patriots teammates. John Tomase has another story on the death of Hill and the reaction from the Patriots. Albert Breer has more from Hill’s Patriot and LSU teammates about his tragic death. Laurel J. Sweet talks to a Mattapan multiple sclerosis sufferer who was assisted by Hill in the past.

Red Sox
The Red Sox welcomed Trot Nixon back to Fenway Park as the former Boston outfielder returned for the first time with his new club, the Cleveland Indians. It was a nailbiter at Fenway, with the Red Sox holding on for a 5-3 win.

Rob Bradford has the Sox passing what he calls their first true test of the season. Amalie Benjamin has the Red Sox getting a ninth inning break that might’ve saved the game for them on a night full of ovations. Kevin McNamara has Curt Schilling turning in one of his strongest performances of the season in the win. Paul Doyle has Schilling and Kevin Youkilis leading the Sox to victory. Garry Brown has more on Schilling returning to top form last night. Paul Jarvey has the Sox benefiting from a gift call to hold on at Fenway.

Bob Ryan has a look at the return of Trot Nixon to Fenway Park, and at his long career with the Red Sox. Jon Couture examines another Red Sox reunion at Fenway Park. Mark Murphy has more on Trot playing the role of homecoming king last night. Steve Krasner also has a look at the return of the ultimate Dirt Dog to Fenway. Lenny Megliola has Trot getting a hero’s welcome at Fenway Park. Jarvey says that Red Sox fans love grit, which is why Nixon was beloved by so many. Mike Petraglia has more on the return of a Red Sox folk hero.

Steve Krasner has a look at the controversial strikeout call in the top of the ninth inning which got the Red Sox a much-needed out. Karen Guregian has a look at Kevin Youkilis’ inside-the-park home run. Doyle has a good look at the competitiveness of the Papelbon brothers, which extends outside of the baseball diamond. For Wall Street Journal subscribers, there is a story today on the struggles of John Henry’s investment funds, which have taken a beating recently.

Alex Speier has a different look at the Red Sox defense, one that shows that the 2007 club is better than last year’s edition with Alex Gonzalez at shortstop. He also looks specifically at the improvement of Coco Crisp in center as a big part of the team’s success. Mark Murphy has Curt Schilling talking about finding his splitter again, and giving credit to pitching coach John Farrell. Guregian has David Ortiz sitting out another game with his sore hamstrings. She also has Josh Beckett getting ready to return to the mound tonight. Joe Haggerty has more on tonight’s return of Beckett.

Nick Cafardo has a feisty Roger Clemens ready for the majors after his final minor league tuneup last night.

Bradford’s notebook has the Indians talking about Keith Foulke’s sudden retirement in spring training. Benjamin’s notebook has Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis having a good-natured argument about who is faster. The Projo notebook has more on the Pedroia/Youkilis debate. Doyle’s notebook has more on the return of Nixon. Brown’s notebook has Schilling giving credit to John Farrell for his outing last night. Jarvey’s notebook says that the Red Sox will be cautious with Josh Beckett in his return tonight. Couture’s notebook has Kevin Youkilis stealing the thunder from Trot Nixon’s return.

Clay Getting Some Play

There will be no afternoon/weekend post today, as I will be “off grid” for a couple of days.

This weekend, keep up with the Red Sox news on the newly re-designed (again) BSMW Red Sox mashup.

Check Patriots news on the BSMW Patriots News Mashup.

Rob Bradford has a mini-feature on Sox pitching prospect Clay Buchholz, who went against Roger Clemens the other night and had scouts more impressed with him than Clemens. Bradford points out a few things about Buchholz, such as the fact that he was drafted with the compensatory pick the Sox received when Pedro Martinez signed with the New York Mets, and that he was available with that pick because of an incident in college where he showed extremely poor judgment. Jeff Horrigan notes that in addition to his .347 average, Kevin Youkilis has also “quietly fortified a reputation as one of the most adept-fielding first basemen in the American league.”

Sean McAdam looks at three areas of concern for the Red Sox despite their 9.5 game lead over the Yankees. David Heuschkel has Terry Francona managing a fair amount of stress these days in addition to his ballclub. Steve Buckley says that the Red Sox don’t need to worry about beating the Yankees as long as they beat everybody else. Lenny Megliola looks at the struggles of J.D. Drew and the stress of Francona.

Bill Ballou, who was the target of Francona’s wrath this week in New York, looks at the manager’s patience with struggling players, and how for the most part, this approach has paid off. Gordon Edes looks at the job of the official scorer, a role often filled by newspaper reporters.

Horrigan’s notebook as Daisuke Matsuzaka unsatisfied with his changeup, and working extensively on it during a bullpen session on Tuesday. Edes’s notebook has a look at Jon Lester’s rehab start last night for Pawtucket. A Projo note has Alex Rodriguez apologizing to Dustin Pedroia for his hard slide into second base on Tuesday night.

Maureen Mullen has Lester putting together a solid start for AAA Pawtucket in his rehab assignment.

Michael Silverman has a look at the Red Sox other AA pitching prospect that people paying attention, Michael Bowden. Amalie Benjamin catches up with Lancaster (Single A) first baseman Aaron Bates, who hit four home runs in a game earlier this month, the first time a Red Sox minor leaguer had done that since 1949.

Patriots
Gerry Callahan notes that the day is coming when Tom Brady is going to have to answer questions about impending fatherhood, Gisele, and of course, Randy Moss.

Randall Gay is officially back in the fold, having signed his one year tender offer. While it is a minor move, Karen Guregian has Gay and his agent hoping to stick with the Patriots for a while longer. Christopher L. Gasper and Shalise Manza Young have more on what Gay can bring to the Patriots, namely depth in the secondary, and perhaps more if he can stay healthy and recapture the form of his rookie season.

Celtics
Jackie MacMullan says that it is time for the Celtics to start making their own luck. She points to the Phoenix Suns as a team that has done the job of building a contender despite never having a really high draft pick.

Shira Springer has the Celtics shifting their focus to who will be available with the 5th pick in the draft.

More Celtics news on the BSMW Celtics News Mashup.

Misc
David Scott looks at how the Globe has no problem speaking out against Bernard McGuirk’s proposed tryout at WRKO, but won’t give a statement on their own problems with Ron Borges. He also looks at Bob Ryan’s new blogging adventure and a few other items.

Susan Bickelhaupt looks at NBC’s switching off an NHL overtime playoff game in favor of horseracing last weekend.

Kevin Paul Dupont looks at former Bruin Brian Leetch calling it a career.

Frank Dell’Apa leads a Globe series examining British soccer.

Dan Duggan looks at Ultimate Fighting getting big time exposure these days, as a look at the cover of Sports Illustrated this week will confirm.

Michael Vega looks at defending Indianapolis 500 winner Sam Hornish Jr, while David Exum has Kasey Kahne trying to turn his season around.

Thursday Speedlinks

Bob Ryan is blogging.

Rob Bradford looks at the performance of Clay Buchholz last night.

David Picker looks at the Red Sox secret weapon…socks.

Good article from David Fleming in ESPN the magazine on the long hours put in by NFL coaches.

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Tonight

7:30pm, TBS – Mets @ Braves
8:00pm, TNT – Cavs @ Pistons