Sox and Rockies Set To Go

Game one of the 2007 World Series is set for Fenway Park tonight, and the morning papers are filled with stories of every type about the Series.

Tony Massarotti gives us his Five keys to the series as the teams set to open tonight. Michael Silverman brings us the Series matchups – position by position. Steven Krasner tries to answer the question Who are these guys? McAdam also looks at the matchups for the series. Mike Fine also tries to tell us who the Rockies are. Garry Brown says that the experience of the Red Sox gives them the edge. David Brown says that experience isn’t a factor.

Gerry Callahan says that the Red Sox will steamroll the out-of-their-class Rockies in five games. Dan Shaughnessy says that no one is taking the Rockies seriously in this series. Sean McAdam says that the Rockies won’t be strangers for very long. Jeff Horrigan says that the Red Sox aren’t just happy to be in the World Series, they want more. Jeff Goldberg notes that a second World Series title would really cement how much the Red Sox have been transformed in the new century. Alex Speier looks at a non-deal that worked out for both teams this spring. Couture says that this series will be won by the Rockies in 6.

Bob Ryan looks at the sore shoulder (or is it his back) that has Tim Wakefield sitting this series out. Steve Buckley has more on the painful decision keeping Wakefield out of the series. Amalie Benjamin has more on Wakefield getting left off the World Series roster. Joe McDonald also reports on the downer for Wakefield in being unable to play. Lenny Megliola looks at the seriousness of the injury for Wakefield, who could’ve put himself at risk by pitching. Paul Jarvey has more on Wakefield being unable to shoulder the load any longer. Jon Couture also examines the tough decision that led to the knuckleballer being left off the roster.

Jackie MacMullan has a look at Terry Francona, who is totally immersed in his trade, agonizing over the tough personnel decisions, even to the detriment of his health at times. Tony Massarotti has Josh Beckett on a quest to be the best, and doing it his way. Gordon Edes has Josh Beckett on a Bob Gibson-like postseason run. McDonald looks at the matchup of Beckett vs Francis to open the series tonight. Fine also looks at the pair of aces that will go head-to-head tonight. Ron Chimelis says that Beckett should win the American League Cy Young. Joe Haggerty says that Beckett is the best there is.

Michael Vega has a piece on Dustin Pedroia, who has gone from struggling rookie to key component this season. Michael Silverman has Jon Lester getting ready for his game four start in place of Wakefield. Krasner has Jonathan Papelbon wondering how the Red Sox can be 2-to-1 favorites with the Rockies on such a roll. Ron Chimelis has a look at both teams getting ready to play ball. Jarvey looks at a pair of rookie infielders who could have a big impact on the series. Bill Ballou says Manny was right and next year is here already.

Benjamin has Eric Gagné glad he was able to post a scoreless inning his last time out, in game six of the ALCS, and grateful for the chance to win a World Series. McAdam notes that Gagne won’t be the only native of his country playing in the series, as it will feature two Canadians, Gagne and Rockies ace Jeff Francis. Bradford has good luck charm Parlay the Parrot being returned to the Sox bullpen after being found in a NU freezer. Mike Petraglia has a look at Sox hitting coach Dave Magadan. Haggerty has a piece on the intensity of Kevin Youkilis.

Yahoo! Sports has launched the Rox & Sox Blogtoberfest for the World Series. Dan LaMothe from the Red Sox Monster blog is one of the writers.

Rob Bradford has a key to this World Series appearance for the Red Sox their being able to forget 2004. Edes examines the blueprint that guided the Sox to repeating their success in getting back to the World Series this season. With only eight players remaining on the roster from the 2004 series, Bradford charts the whereabouts of the rest of that squad.

Stan Grossfeld has kids allowing their children to stay up late on school nights to watch the Red Sox in the postseason. Kerry J. Byrne offers up some tasty eats for the series.

Edes’ notebook has Francona in line for a contract extension after the season. Horrigan’s notebook has Jacoby Ellsbury staying in the lineup for game one. Krasner’s notebook looks at the trade that wasn’t from this past offseason, which nearly had Rockies first baseman Todd Helton coming to the Red Sox. Goldberg’s notebook has more on Wakefield being unable to pitch in the Series. Chimelis’ notebook has Ellsbury getting the start in centerfield for game one. Jarvey’s notebook has Francona with some praise for the Rockies.

Rockies

Jim McCabe has the Rockies squeezed in the tiny visitors clubhouse at Fenway, but not feeling tight as the Series opens. Brendan McGair and Joe McDonald look at Rockies backup catcher Chris Iannetta, a native New Englander from Providence, and the first Rhode Island native since Davey Lopes to play in the World Series. Brown looks at Rockies MVP candidate Matt Holliday.

Jon Couture says that the Rockies are not concerned about their long layoff. Peter May has more on Todd Helton, finally enjoying a World Series appearance after 11 years with the Rockies. Megliola has the Rockies not in awe of Fenway and the World Series. Brown says that the Rockies can play both sides of the ball. Joe Haggerty welcomes the Rockies to town with a look back at their last visit.

In McCabe’s notebook, he chats with Rockies assistant Walt Weiss, who had some moments on the big stage in his career, including against the Red Sox.

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