Clay’s Not OK

David Scott has his latest edition of Monday Morning Media Matters, with a look at Gordon Edes finally getting ready to debut for Yahoo!, and Dan Shaughnessy’s carte blanche assignment in Los Angeles, where he gets to appear on Jim Rome each day and put out Manny rumors that the Globe’s own baseball staff shoots down.

Clay Buchholz was once again ineffective as the Red Sox fell to the White Sox in Chicago yesterday, 6-5.

Amalie Benjamin has a look at the latest bump in the road for Buchholz this season. Michael Silverman has the Red Sox scrambling for starters after another poor outing from Buchholz and with Tim Wakefield getting scratched from his scheduled start today. Sean McAdam has the doldrums continuing for Buchholz, whose spot in the rotation would be in jeopardy if the Red Sox had any alternatives. Jeff Goldberg has the Sox piling up yet another one run loss on the road.

Daniel I. Dorfman looks at an up-and-down day for Mike Lowell yesterday, who is showing signs of breaking out of his slump at the plate. John Tomase has Lowell going from hero to goat in the same game.

Tomase has Justin Masterson finding a fan in Jim Thome.

Benjamin’s notebook has Tim Wakefield going on the 15-day DL with shoulder tightness. Silverman’s notebook has more on the injury to Wakefield. McAdam’s notebook has more on Wakefield. Bill Ballou’s notebook has Kevin Youkilis also getting scratched from the lineup yesterday. Goldberg’s notebook says that either Michael Bowden or Devern Hansack is likely to get the call to start tomorrow night against the Rangers.

Patriots

Over on Patriots Daily, Chris Warner has a closer look at last Thursday night’s Patriots/Ravens preseason game, and does it Q&A style. Be sure to also check out The Sunday Links for a look at the weekend coverage of the Patriots.

Mike Reiss has a look at the impressive play of the Patriots young linebackers on Thursday night. Mark Farinella has more on the play of the young linebackers in the first preseason game. Karen Guregian offers a few leftover observations from Thursday night. David Brown has the Patriots getting back to work after an underwhelming debut. Mark Farinella has a look at Ray Ventrone and Matthew Slater, who have both been playing all sides of the ball during the preseason. Baxter Holmes says that special teams coverage is an area that the Patriots could use some improvement in.

 Misc

Kevin Henkin wonders if Gerald Green can find himself with the Mavericks.

A few Olympic stories: Shira Springer says that the games may never be free from PEDs. Patricia Wen has Chinese basketball fans rooting for Yao, but idolizing the NBA stars. Bob Ryan has a look at the USA’s 101-70 defeat of China in mens basketball, a game in which Ryan sees a few worrying signs for the US. Marc J. Spears has the US players happy to get this one out of the way.  

A Friday Megalink Day

Ken from Fang’s Bites with you once again with the Friday Megalinks. Lots of links to get to. As you can imagine, the media columns today are Olympic-heavy.

But first, let’s go over the Weekend Viewing Picks.

With the Olympics now underway, they are the main viewing pick for this weekend. I’m not going to list everything. You can go to NBC’s site to see what’s on this weekend. It starts tonight with the Opening Ceremonies (tape delayed) on 7NBC and NBC 10 starting at 7:30 p.m. Just wait until you see how the Olympic flame was lit. It was quite amazing to see. I won’t spoil it for you.

The PGA Championship is also in session. TNT will have early third and final round coverage this weekend starting at 11 a.m. CBS (WBZ and CBS12) comes in with full 18 hole coverage of the season’s last major championship at 2 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. PGA.com also has full online coverage as well.

Over to baseball, NESN has all three games of the Red Sox-White Sox series starting tonight at 8. On Saturday, NESN/WGN have the game at 7 p.m. Then on Sunday, TBS joins NESN for the series finale at 2 p.m. During Sunday’s game, TBS will have a tribute to late Atlanta Braves announcer Skip Caray who died on Sunday.

Fox has two games on Saturday. Most of the country will see the Cardinals-Cubs while others will watch the Yankees at Anaheim. The split and announcing assignments can be seen here. On Sunday, ESPN will have Cards-Cubs live from Wrigley on Sunday Night Baseball at 8 p.m.

Exhibition football is in full swing. The NFL Network will have two games tonight, one live. The Philadelphia Eagles face the Steelers in Pittsburgh at 7:30, then at 11:30, it will air the Seattle Seahawks traveling to the Metrodome to face the Minnesota Vikings on tape delay. Then on Saturday, NFL Network has a live doubleheader with the Bills at Redskins at 7, followed by Dallas at San Diego at 10.

NASCAR’s Nationwide Series will be shown Saturday at 3 p.m. on ABC as the Zippo 200 takes place. Then on Sunday, ESPN will air the Sprint Cup Series Centurion Boat at the Glen at 2 p.m.

Indy Car heads to Kentucky for the Meijer Indy 300 which ESPN2 carries at 6:30 Saturday night.

ESPN2 has the Countrywide Classic finals, Sunday at 5 p.m. as the U.S. Open Series continues.

A full listing of sports on TV can be seen at USA Today.

Let’s do your links.

National

USA Today’s Michael Hiestand has some suggestions for NBC on how to make the Olympics more palatable for viewers.

Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated says NBC’s networks will be all-Olympics, all the time.

CNBC’s Darren Rovell in Beijing looks at the best selling NBA jerseys in Communist China.

James Hibbard of the Hollywood Reporter has some reviews of the Olympics Opening Ceremonies.

Marisa Guthrie of Broadcasting & Cable says NBC will be hyping its primetime lineup during the Olympic Games.

Larry Barrett of Multichannel News writes that Spike TV will have a special celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Madden NFL video game.

Mike Flaherty of Variety says Brett Favre’s playing for the New York Jets could lead to higher ratings for CBS which carries the AFC package.

East and Mid-Atlantic

David Scott has some ramblings from Foxboro.

Nancy Marrapese-Burrell in today’s Boston Globe says despite not having Tiger Woods, there are still several reasons to watch the PGA Championship.

Richard Sandomir of the New York Times looks at how Brett Favre has boosted the Jets in more ways than one.

Newsday’s Neil Best has three stories on Favre signing with the Jets. The first story looks at the business impact on the Jets. Then, Neil talks with Fox Sports’ NFL insider Jay Glazer who broke the story while spending 24 hours in the Orlando airport. Neil writes that ESPN is an early winner with a Jets game on Monday Night Football in Week 3.

The New York Post’s Phil Mushnick says MLB Commish Bud Selig should have punished Ken Griffey, Jr. for his throat slash directed at Reds analyst Jeff Brantley just before last week’s trade deadline.

Also from the Post, Justin Terranova talks with ESPN’s MLB analyst Steve Phillips about the NL East race. And Justin has five questions for CBS golf analyst Nick Faldo regarding the PGA Championship.

Laura Nachman says CBS’ Charley Casserly joins Gus Johnson to call Eagles exhibition games.

The Baltimore Sun’s Ray Frager looks at NBC’s enormous amount of Olympics coverage.

Two things from the DC/Baltimore Examiner’s Jim Williams. First, Jim says WUSA and Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic begin their annual battle of Redskins coverage. Finally, Jim says this weekend’s PGA Championship has been lost in all of the Olympics hype.

Tim Lemke of the Washington Times says Versus has signed a 10 year deal with the Indy Racing League.

South

Doug Nye of The State says this year, NBC is offering the most hours of Olympic coverage ever.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald calls the amount of coverage NBC will provide from Communist China, “staggering.”

Dave Darling of the Orlando Sentinel says NBC has made this year’s Olympics easier to watch, although he erred in saying the Opening Ceremonies will be seen live tonight.

Jerry Greene, also from the Sentinel writes that with or without Tiger Woods, watching golf on TV is a true struggle.

David Barron from the Houston Chronicle says NBC is showing the Olympics on multiple platforms.

Ray Buck of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram says SportsCenter won’t look the same in the mornings starting on Monday.

Mel Bracht of the Daily Oklahoman looks at the 3,600 hours of the Olympics that NBC will provide. Mel has an Olympic channel guide. Mel says Cox Communications is ramping up its high school football coverage. And Mel has his weekend viewing picks.

Midwest

George M. Thomas of the Akron Beacon Journal says NBC is going to be showing the Olympics on all of its cable channels.

Bob Wolfey of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel tells his readers to get ready to see a lot of the Jets with Brett Favre on CBS.

Michael Zuidema of the Grand Rapids (MI) Press says it will be tough to avoid the Olympics on your TV.

Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune says long-time Chicagoland sports personality Lou Canellis is happy to be back in the sports scene.

Neal Justin of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune says NBC’s coverage of the Olympics will be the most intense ever. Neal has his five don’t miss moments for the Games.

Paul Christian of the Rochester Post-Bulletin tells us that NBC will flood our TV’s with the Games.

The Kansas City Star’s Jeffrey Flanagan has some quotes from last night’s KCTV broadcast of the Chiefs-Bears game.

Let’s welcome the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Dan Caesar to the Friday megalinks. He had been writing on Saturdays, but now moves his media column to Friday. Today, Dan writes about Charter Communications refusing to pick up some of NBC’s HD Olympic coverage.

West

Over to the San Diego Union-Tribune where Jay Posner talks with Padres voice Matt Vasgerian who is working the Olympics for NBC out of the Saturday Night Live studios in New York. Here are the ratings from San Diego last week.

John Maffei of the North County Times also talks with Matt Vasgerian.

Jim Carlisle of the Ventura County Star says Olympic viewers will go from having too little to watch to possibly having too much.

Randy Harvey of the Los Angeles Times has a day-by-day highlight guide of what to watch at the Olympics.

Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News says the amount of Olympics coverage on NBC is overwhelming. Tom has his extensive media notes in his Farther Off the Wall blog. And Tom writes that NBC did the Olympic time warp during the Today show this morning carefully avoiding the Opening Ceremonies which were taking place at the time.

Ron Judd of the Seattle Times live blogged CBC’s coverage of the Olympics Opening Ceremonies.

Canada

William Houston of the Toronto Globe and Mail says while this may be CBC’s last Olympics for at least six years, it’s not going out quietly.

Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star writes that Olympics coverage on CBC/TSN and NBC is reaching new heights.

That’s going to do it for now. Enjoy your weekend.

Pats Get ’08 Kicked Off

Head on over to Patriots Daily for a look back at last night’s preseason opener between the Patriots and Ravens. The defense looked ok, the offense, not so much.

Get all the newspaper and blog coverage from last night at PatriotsLinks.com.

Over on Scott’s Shots, we’ve got some Rumblings and Bumblings in Foxborough from last night as well.

The Red Sox open a weekend series with the White Sox tonight. They are also in pursuit of Padres outfielder Brian Giles, having put in a waiver claim on the veteran. The two teams are trying to work out a trade. Check the stories at RedSoxLinks.com.

Check back later for another edition of Ken Fang’s Friday Megalinks….

Funayama To Replace Simpson on B’s Telecasts

Fluto Shinzawa on the Boston.com Bruins blog reports that NESN has hired Naoko Funayama to replace Rob Simpson as Bruins reporter on the network’s telecasts.

Funayama has been a freelance reporter for NESN on Red Sox stories while working at NH’s WMUR-TV as a full time sports reporter.

She was born in Tokyo and speaks fluent Japanese, this garnered her some attention during the early days of the Daisuke Matsuzaka era as she was pretty much the only local media person who could talk directly wth the Japanese ace. She stepped in as a translator in at least one early press conference.

She has a hockey background, as her NESN bio states that she is a youth hockey volunteer and serves as a coach for SCORE Boston, a program that provides inner-city youth with an opportunity to participate in the sport of hockey.

Here’s an archived article from the New Hampshire Union Leader on Funayama.

Who Are These Guys? – Mark Farinella

Mark Farinella has been a regular on the Patriots beat since 1977 – which makes him the longest tenured day-to-day guy covering the Patriots.

He writes for The Sun Chronicle out of Attleboro, and is pretty prolific at cranking out the coverage, singlehandedly putting out 4-5 articles on the day after a game. His daily coverage of the team is top notch, and this season he’s also been Blogging Fearlessly on the SC web site.

As a high school student, Farinella actually covered the first game ever played at then-Schaefer Stadium in August 1971 for the Mansfield News.

In the late 1980’s, Farinella spent two years at the Patriot-Ledger, backing up Ron Hobson. He also worked for the AP as a stringer from 1982-2003.

Sox Offense Starts At Top

Amalie Benjamin has Jacoby Ellsbury boosting the offensive attack with a three run homer in the Red Sox 8-2 win over the Royals last night. Michael Silverman has Ellsbury and Tim Wakefield leading the charge. Sean McAdam has the offense finally giving Wakefield some support. Jeff Goldberg has more on the offense finally getting things together. Paul Jarvey has Wakefield getting a much deserved night on cruise control.

Nick Cafardo looks at how Dustin Pedroia’s preparation for each game has made him into a great player. McAdam has Pedroia getting the night off last night – his first in quite a while. Tony Massarotti says that Jed Lowrie might be the long-term solution at shortstop for the Red Sox. Cafardo has Tim Wakefield giving the Red Sox yet another quality start.

Buddy Thomas says that Manny is just what the Dodgers needed.

Benjamin’s notebook has Kevin Youkilis OK after being hit by yet another pitch last night. Silverman’s notebook says that Youkilis was lucky he didn’t have his hand broken by the pitch. McAdam’s notebook has X-rays of Youkilis’ wrist coming back negative. Goldberg’s notebook has Ellsbury still leading the league in stolen bases despite going a month between steals. Jarvey’s notebook has more on Youkilis.

Patriots

With Brett Favre joining the New York Jets late last night, the AFC East at least got more interesting this morning.

Scott Benson has a look at tonight’s preseason opener for the Patriots, noting who he’ll be watching, and also introduces us to three new Patriots Daily staff members.

Mark Farinella has the Ravens providing the first test of 2008 for the Patriots. Eric McHugh has a cheat sheet of 11 players you should keep an eye on tonight. Rich Garven has five players or positions you should be watching. Douglas Flynn gives us another four things to be watching for. Karen Guregian also provides us with plenty of things to be watching out for in the preseason opener. Christopher Price has five things to watch for in tonight’s game. Ian Clark says that the positional battles will really start to heat up tonight.

Christopher L. Gasper has Adalius Thomas feeling much more comfortable heading into his second season with the Patriots. John Tomase has Randy Moss locked and loaded for an encore performance in his second year in New England. Guregian adds that Moss is a more than willing teacher to the younger players on the team. Shalise Manza Young has C.J. Jones as one of those young receivers looking to make an impact.

Lenny Megliola has had enough of Brett Favre.

Gasper’s notebook has Randy Moss serving as a mentor and teacher to some of the younger receivers on the roster. Guregian’s notebook has Chad Jackson looking to embrace his fresh start tonight. Young’s notebook says that the Patriots will not use a defensive headset tonight.

Misc

Frank Dell’Apa has a look at the new schedule for the Celtics, which has them opening on Oct 28th against the Cavs.

Bill Reynolds says that the US mens basketball team has a lot to lose if they don’t come home with the Gold. Michael Muldoon says that LeBron James’ legacy isn’t going anywhere until he can win a title.

Bob Ryan takes a deep breath and gets ready for the Olympics.

 

Infamous Moments – McDonough Punches Clayborn

We’re back with another installment of infamous moments in Boston sports media history.

The relationship between the media and professional athletes has always been an adversarial one. Rarely however, has it gotten physical.

On September 9th, 1979, the Patriots had just routed the New York Jets 56-3.

These days morning talk show hosts and ESPN analysts would be eviscerating the Patriots for running up the score and showing poor sportsmanship- the Patriots scored 14 points in the fourth quarter when they were already up 42-3.

The atmosphere in the Patriots locker room following the game should’ve been light hearted, but cornerback Raymond Clayborn was miserable. He had a bad week, twice scuffling with teammates in practice.  

After the game, Clayborn was snapping at writers and bumping into them on purpose. Legendary writer Will McDonough of The Boston Globe took exception, saying “”Hey, Ray, there’s no need to do that.”

Clayborn reacted by jabbing his finger in McDonough’s face, poking him in the eye. McDonough then punched him twice, knocking him into a laundry cart and taking down a number of people with him.

The story immediately went into legend, with some accounts stating that McDonough had knocked Clayborn “out cold” with a single punch, and others describing more of a scuffle between the two.

McDonough was lionized among his colleages in the media for the incident, which was lauded as an example of “southie justice.”

From a Globe story after McDonough’s death:

”After that, he became a folk hero.” says Vince Doria, the former Globe sports editor who is now vice president/ director of news at ESPN.

”You know how when you’re a kid, you go around saying, `My dad can beat up your dad’?” says Sean McDonough. ”Well, after that, I went to school saying, `Never mind beating up your dad. My dad can beat up an NFL player.”’

What do you think would happen if a member of the media and an athlete got into a fight in the locker room these days?

Beckett, Sox Right Ship

Amalie Benjamin has Josh Beckett, Jason Bay and Jacoby Ellsbury leading the Sox to a much needed 8-2 road win over the Kansas City Royals. Michael Silverman has Beckett returning to form as the Red Sox ace last night. Sean McAdam has Beckett bringing his ‘A’ game last night. Jeff Goldberg has Jason Bay leading the offense with four hits last night. Paul Jarvey has Beckett and the Sox giving us a little piece of last year.

Tony Massarotti says that David Ortiz needs to forget about the pain in his wrist and the trade of Manny Ramirez and just start hitting. Nick Cafardo has a look at former Red Sox replacement player (as an outfielder) Ron Mahay, who has made himself into one of the top left handed relievers in the league. Massarotti has Jason Bay adding to his impressive start with the Red Sox. McAdam has Mike Lowell getting back into the lineup last night.

Silverman has Curt Schilling talking on WEEI about a confrontation with Manny back in 2005. Mike McDermott recaps Theo Epstein’s appearance on the station during the Dale & Holley show.

Benjamin’s notebook has injury updates on David Ortiz and Mike Lowell. Silverman’s notebook has Ellsbury getting back into the swing of things. McAdam’s notebook has Ortiz pressing on despite his sore wrist. Goldberg’s notebook asserts that Ortiz needs to get healthy mentally. Jarvey’s notebook has more on Ortiz and the pain in his wrist.

Patriots

Mike Reiss has a look at the offensive line, which has been a concern all through camp. Karen Guregian has a look at how the defense is shaking up a few weeks into camp. Mark Farinella says that camp has been pretty quiet this summer, but that no news is good news when it comes to training camp.

Mark Farinella has Mike Vrabel joining the team for his first practice of the summer yesterday. Rich Thompson has more on Vrabel joining his teammates on the field. Robert Lee has Vrabel with some unfinished business to take care of this season. Jennifer Toland has Vrabel excited to get back out on the field coming off one of the best seasons of his career last year. Hector Longo has the Patriots linebacker returning to action with something to prove.

Douglas Flynn has rookies and veterans alike looking forward to the preseason opener tomorrow night. Eric McHugh says that a number of Patriots starters will likely be held out of that game. Lee has coach Belichick offering some praise for Matt Cassel, who will likely see a lot of action tomorrow night. McHugh checks in with Pierre Woods, who along with Eric Alexander has something to prove this preseason.

Reiss’ notebook has ‘old man’ Vrabel returning to practice yesterday after being taken off the PUP list. Farinella’s notebook examines the crowded field at backup QB for the Patriots. Guregian’s notebook also reports on the QB competition behind Tom Brady. Lee’s notebook has Wes Welker hungry for more this season. Toland’s notebook has the Patriots rookies eager to show their stuff in a game. Flynn’s notebook has more on Vrabel returning to practice.

 

Sox Stall in K.C.

We’ve got a summertime post from Kevin Henkin over on the BSMW Full Court Press. He has a look at Paul Pierce making the news this week, and whether its an issue that the Celtics captain was out at 3am in Las Vegas.

The Red Sox new-look offense stumbled in Kansas City last night, as they were unable to get things going against Gil Meche, and fell to the Royals 4-3. To top things off, David Ortiz once again felt a click in his wrist. Check all the coverage over at RedSoxLinks.com.

The Patriots practiced inside Gillette Stadium last night in front of the season ticket holders. Preparation is underway for Thursday night’s preseason opener against the Baltimore Ravens. Get all the stories from PatriotsLinks.com.

Pink Hat Hell reviews the season two premiere of Sox Appeal.

Mike Reiss has the latest installment of his Ask Reiss mailbag.

Chad Finn offers some final, scattered thoughts on Manny Ramirez.

 

Back To Their Winning Ways

Nick Cafardo has the Red Sox regaining their confidence with a weekend sweep of the A’s. Joe Haggerty has the Sox able to salvage the homestand with the sweep of Oakland. Jeff Horrigan says that energy returned to the Red Sox this weekend and it showed on the field. Jeff Goldberg has Dice-K’s pitching and Jed Lowrie’s timely hitting adding up to a win for the Sox. Glen Farley has the Sox moving past the Manny madness of last week. Garry Brown has sweeps season continuing for the Red Sox. Jennifer Toland has the Sox busting out the brooms on the A’s this weekend.

Michael Vega has Jed Lowrie enjoying his time at shortstop and working to develop a routine to keep him hot at the plate. Steve Buckley has Lowrie plugging the hole at shortstop for the Sox, but showing that he could be much more than just a stopgap replacement. Joe McDonald asserts that these last three games have been crucial for the Sox. Mike Fine has the Sox new kids feeling pretty good about themselves as they head out on the road.

Steven Krasner says that we have to accept that Daisuke Matsuzaka is a six-inning pitcher and nothing more. Alex Speier says that with the Manny situation resolved, it’s time to examine the pitching staff. Buckley has Jason Bay keeping the Fenway fans cheering, but also looking forward to going out on the road with his new club. Horrigan previews the Futures Games coming to Fenway on Saturday. Kevin Cullen has a column today about the Dodgers and their new habit of collecting Red Sox castoffs.

Over at Cursed to First, Beth has put together what might be the ultimate look back at the Manny Ramirez era in Boston.

Cafardo’s notebook has Daisuke Matsuzaka improving to 12-2 on the season despite once again not being able to reach the seventh inning. Horrigan’s notebook says that this was the latest in a series of strong outings for Dice-K. McDonald’s notebook has Kevin Youkilis’ hitting streak reaching 10 games. Goldberg’s notebook has Youkilis opening up the second half of the season on a roll. Brown’s notebook says that Bay could be hitting cleanup tonight in Kansas City. Toland’s notebook has Lowrie showing that he belongs in the lineup.

Patriots

Scott Benson has a pet theory on why Brett Favre is acting the way he is.

Christopher L. Gasper examines the candidates vying to become Tom Brady’s top backup. Rich Thompson has rookie Kevin O’Connell among those battling for the spot. Eric McHugh has the trio of backup QB’s all looking forward to getting their shot on the field this preseason.

John Tomase has rookie linebacker Jerod Mayo appearing to be well on his way to grasping the Patriots defense. Mark Farinella talks to James Sanders about the team loading up at safety. Bud Barth has Wes Welker looking at a lot to live up to in his second season with the Patriots.

Matt Collette has former Patriot Tebucky Jones getting arrested after an altercation at Mohegan Sun.

Gasper’s notebook has David Thomas again showing flashes of his talent in his return to practice. Tomase’s notebook has more on Thomas, who looks to silence the doubters. Farinella’s notebook has the Patriots practicing inside Gillette for the first time tonight. McHugh’s notebook has Wes Welker showing a little bit of rust in his first few practices this weekend. Barth’s notebook has the PUP listing shrinking for the Pats.

Misc

David Scott has a weekend recap, and a look at 890 ESPN settling on their new local lineup.

Lenny Megliola has a thoughts column.

Steve Conroy has five questions and challenges for the Boston College football team as they start camp today.