Vintage Papi Hits Walk Off Blast

I hope you savored last night. I know I did, hitting the replay button on the TV several times to rewatch David Ortiz’s game winning home run in the bottom of the ninth to give the Red Sox a 3-2 victory over the Chicago White Sox at Fenway Park. It was the second home run of the night for Ortiz, who continues his second half home run revival. Remarkable, when you consider how bad he has looked at times this season.

Amalie Benjamin has Ortiz and Tim Wakefield both at the top of their games last night. John Tomase has the Red Sox winning like old times. Daniel Barbarisi has Wakefield reminding all at Fenway why they missed him. Jeff Goldberg says that it was just like old times at Fenway last night. Bill Ballou has Big Papi turning back the clock. Mike Fine has Wakefield leaving teammates in awe.

Bob Ryan has Wakefield coming back from his injury and dominating right from his very first pitch. Alex Speier has Wakefield restoring order to the Red Sox rotation. Silverman has more on the knuckleballer’s first start since July 8th. Barbarisi has Victor Martinez doing a fine job catching Wakefield for the first time. Eric Avidon says that Wakefield could be the key to a Red Sox playoff push. Jim Fenton has more on Martinez’s first effort at catching the knuckleball.

Michael Silverman doesn’t want the Red Sox criticizing how he and his media brethren do their jobs. He claims the players just want “fan-boy journalism.” He concludes by saying “when the Red Sox start playing media critic, they lose me.” When the media starts making themselves the focus and whining about how they should not be criticized, they lose the fans. It’s a bit surprising to have this come from Silverman, one of the quieter, non-controversial members of the local press.

Kevin McNamara has Big Papi dusting off his Superman cape last night. Maureen Mullen has Ortiz reflecting on a difficult season. Jessica Camerato has Ramon Ramirez and Junichi Tazawa forming an unlikely friendship. Barbarisi looks at some potential Red Sox callups for Sept 1. Paul Kenyon has Chris Carter in a strange middle ground right now as he is stuck in limbo between the Red Sox and Mets. McNamara has Kevin Youkilis stating again how much he loves playing in Boston.

Nick Cafardo has Billy Wagner just hoping to fit in with the Red Sox. Brian MacPherson says that Wagner gives the Red Sox yet another bullpen weapon. Chaz Scoggins wonders if we saw a sign of the future last night with how Terry Francona used Daniel Bard.

Bob Hohler reports on a federal appeals court ruling that government agents illegally seized the list of  more than 100 positive substance tests from the 2003 season. In other news, after all his horses were stolen, farmer Brown decided to lock the stable door.

Benjamin’s notebook has Kevin Youkilis  clarifying things after his comments in yesterday’s Globe were crucified all day long by faux-angry sports radio hosts. (on both stations) Tomase’s notebook has Brad Penny asking for and receiving his release by the Red Sox. The Projo Red Sox journal has Ortiz shrugging off the news about the court ruling. Goldberg’s notebook has Youkilis insisting he wasn’t taking a shot at the fans.  Ballou’s notebook looks at the difficult adjustment the White Sox in going from Wakefield to Daniel Bard.

Today and tomorrow is the WEEI/NESN Jimmy Fund Radio-Telethon, and even if you don’t want to listen to the station, I highly recommend making a donation and having a part in this great event.

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-08-26

  • Ebersol calls Costas, Michaels and Collinsworth a "trio of talent [that] is unsurpassed probably in the history of television." #
  • As usual, Dennis Drinkwater couldn't get out of Fenway fast enough after the ball left Ortiz's bat #redsox #
  • I liked the bit between Remy & D.O. about if Remy did a "rehab start" in the minors before returning to the #redsox booth. #
  • RT @richarddeitsch: If you get the MLB Network, something cool: Net is simulcasting Vin Scully’s FSN Prime call of LA-Col tom. at 3pm ET. #
  • BSMW Network Post: Wednesday’s Links http://bit.ly/wMHHH #
  • BSMW Network Post: Brady Comments Spark Media Overreaction http://bit.ly/11yv5i #
  • RT @PatriotsDaily: New blog post: Brady Comments Spark Media Overreaction http://bit.ly/DZVJt #
  • RT @realpatriots: Yesterday's press corps included a TV crew from the UK and a reporter from Germany. Next week, a crew from China. #
  • BSMW Network Post: Wednesday Quicklinks – Sox Beat Sox Again http://bit.ly/7CY78 #
  • BSMW Network Post: Wednesday’s Viewing Picks http://bit.ly/1nvOW #
  • BSMW Network Post: Pats Linebackers Still a Concern http://bit.ly/NzNDp #
  • BSMW Network Post: Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-08-25 http://bit.ly/2U6tK9 #

Wednesday Quicklinks – Sox Beat Sox Again

There’s a lot on the plate today, so we’ll have to make do with a few quick links and comments for this morning…

The Red Sox beat the White Sox last night 6-3 at Fenway Park. Check all the coverage from RedSoxLinks.com.

In that game, Jacoby Ellsbury stole his 55th base of the season, a new Red Sox franchise record.

Dan Shaughnessy catches Kevin Youkilis with some things to say.

Tom Brady’s comments to the media yesterday about money and contracts had the media abuzz yesterday. Their articles are all over at PatriotsLinks.com.

Over on Patriots Daily, we’ve got a column from Jeremy Gottlieb, who notes that the Patriots linebackers are still a concern on defense. Check back over there a little later today as we look at the coverage of Tom Brady’s comments yesterday.

Fang’s Bites has the nightly viewing picks, and media links from around the country.

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-08-25

  • You'd think they were talking about the Oakland Raiders #
  • Felger & Mazz killing the Patriots all afternoon. More horrible radio from 98.5 #
  • RT @realpatriots: The Patriots have signed 2009 3rd round pick LB Tyrone McKenzie and released S Tank Williams. #
  • BSMW Network Post: All Red Sox Games Back on WEEI http://bit.ly/1yqE0H #
  • BSMW Network Post: BREAKING NEWS: Red Sox Games Return to WEEI http://bit.ly/lrA6Y #
  • RT @bostonradio: Next step will probably be to expand their local postgame(Sox or C's) talk to 1am or 2am. #
  • All Red Sox games back on WEEI: http://bit.ly/IiNdb #
  • RT @bostonradio: @bruceallen I say Sox off to 850 fulltime and WKAF 97.7 simulcast #
  • Or this: RT @bostonradio: FCC granted Entercom permission to boost WKAF's power from 1700 watts to 2050 watts Part of plan to run WEEI on FM #
  • WEEI announcement coming at 3:02. Any guesses? Expanding to FM signal? Red Sox off 680 and back to 850? New stations in NH? #
  • "Major Announcement" coming on WEEI's Big Show today. Hopefully they've "stolen" Gary Tanguay from WBZ-FM…. #
  • RT @lenno212: Announcement coming shortly on Wagner. Looks like the trade to Boston is going to happen. #Mets. #
  • BSMW Network Post: Tuesday’s Links http://bit.ly/UJtae #
  • RT @Adam_Schefter: Denver and Patriots at it again. This time the Broncos acquire Russ Hochstein from the Patriots for late-round 2010 pick #
  • BSMW Network Post: Patriots/Redskins One of Just Two Preseason Games for CBS http://bit.ly/2b54R2 #
  • BSMW Network Post: Contract Talk Still Popular Topic Around Patriots http://bit.ly/7hXH9 #
  • BSMW Network Post: Two-out Success Fuels Red Sox http://bit.ly/gx38Z #
  • RT @JonCouture: #RedSox Gm 124 (12-8 W) at http://bit.ly/18Kjl4 — Apologies to A.J. Pierzynski, not as "Varitekian" with SBs as I thought. #
  • BSMW Network Post: Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-08-24 http://bit.ly/gJobR #

All Red Sox Games Back on WEEI

In possibly yet another sign that they view 98.5 The SportsHub as a real competitor in the Boston sports talk radio arena, Entercom Boston/WEEI announced the following today:

Entercom New England announced today that, effective with the team’s game against the Chicago White Sox Wednesday evening, August 26th, all future Boston Red Sox games will be carried on WEEI 850 AM in Boston, the flagship station of the WEEI Sports Radio Network.

From 1995 to 2006, Red Sox games were carried exclusively on WEEI. In 2006, the games were shifted to Entercom sister station WRKO AM 680.

“We have a tremendously close partnership with the Red Sox, and are very excited to bring them back to WEEI,” said Jason Wolfe, Entercom New England’s Vice President of AM Programming. “This move will add consistency to our lineup, whereby all of our sports assets will be consolidated in the same place. There’s no better compliment to the Boston Celtics, Patriots Monday and Patriots Friday, Sunday Night and Monday Night NFL football, the Super Bowl and NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, than adding Red Sox baseball back to nation’s biggest sports radio station.”

Added Julie Kahn, Entercom New England Market Manager/VP: “We’re delighted to bring the Red Sox back to their original home on WEEI. The Red Sox and WEEI have a long history together and it’s a partnership that’s a win for all – WEEI, the Sox and the Boston sports fans.”

“Our partnership with Entercom ensures that Red Sox fans know where to go for the best, most compelling sports news and features on radio,” said Red Sox President and CEO Larry Lucchino. “Today’s announcement marks a return home for us, and now all of Red Sox Nation will know they can turn to WEEI to catch every Red Sox game all season long.”

Bringing the Red Sox back to WEEI makes sense for the station, especially now with a potentially viable* competitor on the airwaves. Mike Adams now doesn’t have to worry about going up against The D.A. Show on 98.5 on nights the Red Sox are playing. More important, it allows WEEI to state that they are the flagship station of the Red Sox and Celtics, while 98.5 has the Patriots and Bruins.

*But of course, as long as 98.5 employs Gary Tanguay as a full time host, they can’t be considered a true alternative to WEEI.

Contract Talk Still Popular Topic Around Patriots

With right tackle Nick Kaczur getting a contract extension from the Patriots that will take him through the 2014 season, some, like Ron Borges, feel that the Patriots are being hypocritical in their dealings with players, having said previously that next year’s labor uncertainty is preventing them from getting a deal done with defensive tackle Vince Wilfork. What Borges, and some others miss is that the Kaczur deal is for peanuts compared to what Wilfork would be receiving.

If Kaczur collects his entire deal…by no means a sure thing…he could make a total of $16 million over four years. Wilfork, if he views Albert Haynesworth as a model, could ask to collect that much in a single season. These deals are apples and truffles.

Mike Reiss writes today that perhaps the Patriots should agree not to franchise Wilfork next season, just to avoid any hard feelings. I’m not sure I agree with that take. The NFL is a business on both sides, and if the Patriots agreed not to franchise Wilfork next season, there’s no guarantee that that will get them any favor with Wilfork next offseason. The only way I can see the team agreeing to give up the tag is if Wilfork leaves camp and holds out. Jim Donaldson notes that the Patriots are usually correct when they decide to let a player walk.

Ian R. Rapoport has a look at Jerod Mayo’s role growing by leaps and bounds in his 2nd year. Carolyn Thornton has long snapper Nathan Hodel striving for consistency in camp. Rich Garven has Hodel and rookie Jake Ingram battling for the same job.

Christopher Price and Glen Farley try to figure out the final 53-man roster. Rapoport has Alex Smith struggling a bit to pick up the Patriots offense. Jeff Howe looks ahead to Friday night.

Rapoport’s notebook has Benjamin Watson returning to practice. Reiss’ notebook has Tom Brady placing the blame on himself for the hit he took from Robert Geathers. Thornton’s Patriots journal has Watson in a battle for his job. Garven’s notebook says that the starters will likely see more action in Friday’s night’s preseason game against the Redskins. Farley’s notebook has more on Brady taking the blame for the hit.

Boston College/Misc

Mark Blaudschun talks to wide receiver Rich Gunnell about catching passes from three quarterbacks in three season. Steve Conroy has the projected starting QB, Dave Shinskie out with a broken rib. Eric Avidon has BC hoping to lean on the running game this season. Blaudschun’s notebook has more on the injury to Shinskie.

Jessica Camerato has a recap of the community work done by the Celtics this summer.

John Powers has an extensive Olympic notebook.

Two-out Success Fuels Red Sox

The Red Sox enjoyed a unusual amount of success with two outs last night in their 12-8 victory over the Chicago White Sox at Fenway Park.

Adam Kilgore notes the Red Sox unleashing their newest, most lethal weapon, as 11 of their 12 runs were scored with two out. Michael Silverman has the Red Sox offense picking up a shaky Clay Buchholz. Joe McDonald looks at a matchup of teams both fighting for playoff life. Jeff Goldberg has Buchholz with a shaky outing that was thankfully not against a top pitcher. Bill Ballou has old-time Red Sox baseball on display at Fenway last night. Jim Fenton has the Boston bats staying hot last night.

Sean McAdam has pitching coach John Farrell saying that Josh Beckett’s problems in his last two outings have been mechanical. Tony Massarotti provides an overview of the wild card race the rest of the way out. Brian MacPherson wonders if there is any room in the bullpen for Billy Wagner. Ron Chimelis looks at the recent controversial comments from Jim Rice. Mike Fine has the Red Sox happy their hitting the ball right now. Rob Bradford says that the Red Sox can get by just fine without Billy Wagner.

Bob Ryan looks at a crazy third inning as the key frame for the Red Sox. McAdam looks at the six unearned runs in the third inning. Fluto Shinzawa has Daniel Bard and the bullpen putting out the fire last night. Kevin McNamara has a peek at Daisuke Matsuzaka’s first rehab start. David Willis has Kason Gabbard trying to salvage his once-promising career. Joe Haggerty has a look at the offensive revival of the Sox. Teddy Panos wonders if he was wrong about Buchholz.

Kilgore’s notebook has Daisuke Matsuzaka making progress in his rehab. The Herald notebook has the Red Sox still attempting to deal for Billy Wagner. The ProJo Red Sox journal says that the Wagner saga should be decided today. Ballou’s notebook looks at Jason Bay’s short-lived steal of home last night. Fenton’s notebook has more on the rehab start for Dice-K.

Patriots and other links coming…

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-08-24

  • RT @SportsMediaNews: New blog post: Comcast and Dish Network To Carry NFL Network's New "NFL RedZone" Channel http://bit.ly/ZxYl1 #
  • RT @romenesko: When newspapers decide to charge for web news, readers will jump to TV/radio news websites. http://is.gd/2wLvj #
  • BSMW Network Post: A Monday Linkfest http://bit.ly/27nTIw #
  • Forget HD, it's 3D! RT @SportsMediaNews: ESPN to Test 3D Production of USC @ OSU College Football Telecast September 12 http://bit.ly/Q7qX9 #
  • RT @JonCouture: I'm dying to know, with "Pocket Money" debuting tonight, what % of people think Fitzy is real – http://bit.ly/LELE8 #
  • BSMW Network Post: Monday’s Viewing Picks http://bit.ly/Yb5UP #
  • BSMW Network Post: Wilfork, Patriots No Closer To Extension http://bit.ly/47yKZq #
  • BSMW Network Post: Beckett, Sox, Smacked Around Again http://bit.ly/2p5z6 #

Wilfork, Patriots No Closer To Extension

Tom Brady’s return has been the biggest story of training camp, but one of the subplots thus far has been the contract status of Vince Wilfork, who is in the final year of his rookie deal, and apparently getting frustrated over the lack of progress on a new contract.

Christopher L. Gasper has Wilfork describing his situation as “pretty frustrating” and not buying Robert Kraft’s explanation that the labor uncertainty is making new deals difficult to complete. Karen Guregian has more on Wilfork’s frustrations, though he does say that he and his family are still happy here. Glen Farley has Wilfork and his teammates on the D-Line finding a flow in the 4-3 alignment.

Shalise Manza Young has rookie Myron Pryor working himself into NFL shape. Rich Garven has second-year cornerback Terrence Wheatley working to get himself back on track after a rough night on Thursday. Guregian has Tom Brady taking the blame for the big hit that he took in the Bengals game. Christopher Price has Randy Moss growing into his new role as a mentor to teammates.

Guregian’s notebook has Belichick praising Randy Moss for his work with his teammates, and also has the Patriots coach handicapping the tight end competition. The Globe notebook has Nick Kaczur close to an extension with the Patriots, which is noteworthy considering the situation with Wilfork. The notebook also has Derrick Burgess getting more comfortable with the defense, though the results haven’t been there yet. Young’s Patriots journal has more on the possible extension for Kaczur. Farley’s notebook has a look at the competition at tight end. Garven’s notebook also looks at the tight ends, and says that the 4-3 looks like it might become a permanent addition to the defense.

Greg Montalbano

I thought I’d round up some of the articles written over the weekend on former Northeastern star and Red Sox farmhand Greg Montalbano, who lost his battle with cancer.

Greg Montalbano a fighter on, off field - Steve Buckley

Greg Montalbano, 31, engineer, Red Sox prospect pitched in minors 5 years - Emma Rose Johnson (Globe)

Montalbano recalled as extraordinary  – Lenny Megliola

Local star passes on too soon - Art Davidson

Remembering Greg Montalbano - Mike Petraglia

Baseball pitcher mourned Sox, Tornadoes grieve for collegue - Paul Jarvey

Misc

Steve Conroy has the Boston College QB battle still wide open. Conroy’s notebook has BC redshirt freshman LB Alexander DiSanzo showing promise.

Monique Walker has the Revolution getting three goals from Kheli Dube in a 3-1 win over Real Salt Lake last night.

Beckett, Sox, Smacked Around Again

After his last two starts, would anyone be shocked to see Josh Beckett take a little trip to the injured list? For the second straight start Beckett was smacked around by the opposition, and this time, no one can say it was because Jason Varitek wasn’t catching him. Beckett gave up a career-high five home runs in the 8-4 loss to the New York Yankees.

Amalie Benjamin has the Yankees leaving Beckett with little to say after the game. John Tomase has Beckett letting this one turn into just another easy Yankee victory. Daniel Barbarisi has Beckett getting pounded early and often last night, right from the first pitch, in fact. Bill Ballou notes the hard-to-believe fact that the Red Sox still lead the season series. Mike Fine has Beckett and the Red Sox once again being humbled by the Yankees.

Steve Buckley has Beckett failing to live up to his big game reputation. Jeff Jacobs says that Red Sox fans should be concerned about Beckett. Paul Jarvey says that blame for last night goes to Beckett, not his catcher or pitching coach. Alex Speier has things we learned last night while Beckett was being humbled.

Dan Shaughnessy has a number of thoughts from another weekend of Red Sox/Yankees. Michael Silverman says that it is clear that the Red Sox can only make the playoffs as the wild card.

Nick Cafardo examines Jonathan Papelbon’s outspokenness on the possibility of the Sox obtaining Billy Wagner. Silverman has Papelbon not sold on Wagner as a great pickup. Joe McDonald has Rocco Baldelli enjoying his time with the Red Sox this season. Brian MacPherson has Casey Kotchman learning to accept his backup role with the Red Sox. Joe Haggerty looks at whether the Sox will be able to add to their strong bullpen.

Adam Kilgore has Tommy Harper ready to be the first to congratulate Jacoby Ellsbury when the latter breaks the formers Red Sox stolen base record. Buckley has Tim Wakefield taking it easy before his return to the Red Sox rotation. Lenny Megliola remembers Greg Montalbano.

Adam Kilgore has Hideki Matsui wrapping up a monster weekend against the Sox, in which he hit four home runs. Ron Borges has the Yankees completely turning the tables on the Red Sox from earlier in the year. Barbarisi has more on Matsui hammering the Red Sox this season.

Benjamin’s notebook has Terry Francona choosing to go with Mike Lowell at DH last night over David Ortiz. Tomase’s notebook wonders if this is the year Derek Jeter gets the MVP nod. The ProJo Red Sox journal has Junichi Tazawa set to remain in the rotation for now, with his next start penciled for Thursday. Ballou’s notebook has Jeter’s leadoff home run a very bad sign. Jim Fenton has the Yankees widening their lead with this series.

Patriots Links coming.