Week Log: Ready For Some Football

Welcome back for another Week Log and, more importantly, another NFL campaign. The always controversial preseason kicks off for the Pats against the defending Super Bowl-champion New Orleans Saints at Gillette Stadium tonight, so let’s start in Foxborough.

Patriots

Pats Fans give you five good reasons for watching this game tonight, as if you needed any. Patriots Gab has the Saints following the Patriots model to perfection last season. Patriots Daily is worried how the Pats will fare tonight given all the new kids who’ve never played a down before.

Boston Sports Then And Now tries to figure out how the Pats can pressure opposing QBs this fall, while Pats Pulpit examines the lingering question of inside linebackers. NE Patriots Draft has Aaron Schobel a potential resolution to the uncertainty at outside linebacker. It Is What It Is has long-forgotten CB Terrence Wheatley beginning to pay dividends.

On ESPN Boston New England Patriots Blog, Mike Reiss doesn’t believe a Tom Brady deal will be done before kick-off tonight. The Rap Sheet reveals how Randy Moss kept himself in great shape this offseason, while Extra Points examines Wes Welker’s long and improbable comeback to the September 12th opener.

Pats Confidential‘s eyes tell them that, despite impressive career stats, Drew Bledsoe does not belong in the Hall of Fame. Jeff Howe has ex-Pats and Raiders CB Mike Haynes defending Jack Tatum’s 1978 hit of Darryl Stingley as coming in an intent-to-hurt era. Yeah, that works for me.

Red Sox

With a split salvaged in the Bronx, Boston Blood Sox has things not so doom-and-gloomy to start this baseball week. Hit And Run With Dan Roche says the chance to redeem yourself as Jon Lester did on Monday is what baseball is all about. Confessions of a She-Fan bemoans her Yanks’ lost game of what ifs. Subway Squawkers thinks this series lacked the typical Sox-Yanks buzzworthiness.

Recent Yankee woes have Bosox Injection declaring the full-time sport of scoreboard watching officially back in season. Extra Bases says there’s still plenty of room on the pennant-chasing bandwagon. Boston Sports Blog believes this 2010 edition is more entertaining, a better story, and a better team than last year’s. All the unsung heroes that have kept the Sox in dreaming range of the playoffs remind A Very Simple Game of the 1967 Impossible Dream team.

Surviving Grady is hearing the footsteps now as the Sox crept closer to the Yankees with a win to open their series in Toronto on Tuesday. Better Red Than Dead‘s prognostication of doom in Toronto got off to a bad start after Mike Lowell’s go-ahead homer proved the difference. Boston Dirt Dogs is glad to see Lowell back in the swing. The Bottom Line has timely hitting and – yes! – the bullpen as two sights for their sore eyes. Full Count calls last night’s win a collective effort by Clay Buchholz and the bats. Red Sox Monster says Buchholz keeps getting better and better. Over The Monster has the Sox closing the long ball gap between them and the Blue Jays after last night’s 4 HR effort.

Fire Brand of the American League does some reworking of the Sox lineup to maximize run-scoring potential. Beantown Sports Observer thinks it well worth the wait for Carlos Delgado to recover his stroke. The Mighty Quinn Media Machine wonders if the No. 21 jersey will be available when Delgado gets to Boston. And to goldbricking slackers like Jerry Thornton, J.D. Drew is a hero.

Finally, Beyond Fenway reports on an unprecedented trifecta of Players of the Week down on the Sox farm.

Odds & Sods
. . . an unstructured wandering through the Boston blogging world

With UFC en route to Boston, SportsCenter 5 Overtime Blog says Shaq will not be the biggest thing to come to town this summer. We’re Just Saying found their summer oasis in the parks of the Cape Cod Baseball League.

As the Revs prepare for a chance to become the first two-time SuperLiga champs, New England Revolution compares this run to 2008.

Hey, are the big media outlets really plagiarizing the work of Masshole Sports? You be the judge as the prosecution takes the stand.

Thanks for checking in. We’ll be back next Thursday.

Week Log: Seven And Fading

Beantown Sports Observer gripes that after an early summer flood of interesting topics, there is zilch gong on now unless you count baseball. Fortunately, Week Log does count baseball so let’s get started there, where the count is presently at seven games back – eight in the lost column, five in the Wild Card.

Red Sox

With MLB-leading run production, yet middle-of-the-pack starters and the third worst bullpen in the A.L., SawxBlog calls 2010 the Year of the Strange. But as the deficit in the standings grows, Peter’s Red Sox Forever is just calling it a season.

Red Sox Monster stops short of calling Daisuke Matsuzaka’s gem on Monday his best start ever, but agrees it was just what the Sox needed to open a 10-game West Coast swing. The Soxaholix sees a favorable pattern developing when Dice-K walks two or fewah battahs.

When the Sox reward Surviving Grady‘s time and emotional investment with a spirit-deflating loss as they did on Tuesday night, everyone pays. Nor is there any joy at The Joy Of Sox after Terry Francona left Jonathan Papelbon in the pen during the extra innings loss. Tim Wakefield blew a four-run lead earlier that night, as The Bottom Line likens his knuckler to a box of chocolates. With Clay Buchholz and Josh Beckett back, The Mighty Quinn Media Machine speculates it could have been Wake’s last start ever. I’m Just Sayin’ wonders if the returning Buchholz and Beckett are enough to make the Sox contenders again this year. Full Count has Buchholz off his game yesterday, struggling in each of his four-plus innings. Tony Lee has the oft-forgotten Jed Lowrie’s return the brightest spot in yesterday’s rubber game loss in Oakland.

Boston Dirt Dogs has Theo & The Trio’s administration denying they’re doing things on the cheap, while Touching All The Bases recalls the baseball vagabonds brought in during the Dan Duquette administration. And the baseball team might be fading, but Keep Your Sox On has the Remy/Orsillo broadcast tandem GQ‘s pick as best in the American League.

Patriots

All this speculation concerning a potential Tom Brady holdout makes Michael Hurley wonder if the NFL offseason has run its course. Extra Points has Brady’s name conspicuously absent from SI’s Fortunate 50 list that places Vince Wilfork at No. 38.

See how far down the list the Pats sit on the training camp edition of It Is What It Is‘s Power Rankings. NE Patriots Draft annoints the Packers and Patriots as bride and groom in their 3rd annual Ridiculous NFL Preview. Pats Pulpit explains why Randy Moss fared well in their preseason look at Most Valuable Patriot candidates.

Tom E. Curran sees the secondary as a serious tender spot in the Pats’ hopes of returning to the NFL’s elite. Patriots Daily looks at the shake-up among the big fatties on the defensive line.

On ESPN Boston’s New England Patriots blog, Mike Reiss explains how the Pats roster is 6th-oldest in the NFL despite including 24 draft picks from the last two years. The Rap Sheet has first-round pick CB Devin McCourty’s agent confident you can throw his client into the youth movement come the start of training camp. And Boston Sports Then And Now looks back on The Decision I, when Bill Belichick dissed the NYJ in LeBronian fashion.

Odds & Sods

Our weekly perusal of the Boston sports blogging community starts with Mass Hysteria, which is concerned about nicknames for a C’s team that could sport five guys over the age of 33. The Crowe’s Nest serves up another reason to root against the Miami Heat next season.

Jessica Isner has all the shootout action from last night’s Football at Fenway club soccer match. Better Red Than Dead can’t imagine how this event can be viewed as anything but a success, while Toeing The Rubber wonders what genius decided to screw with the Fenway Park field by scheduling non-baseball events in mid-season. Fenway Pastoral thinks this excessive whoring out of Fenway Park speaks to a new organizational arrogance on Yawkey Way.

ESPN Boston’s New England Revolution blog has Steve Ralston missing out on a swansong game with the Revs before retiring on Tuesday. Masshole Sports says Tim McCarver’s stand against George Steinbrenner is better late than never.

You can have your HBO, but nothing shall come between Boston Sports Blog and their HD sports programming. And finally, a shout out to SoxSpace News for getting some quality face time on NESN.

The blog ranks are a little light with summer vacations, and that’s where I’ll be for the next two weeks. Week Log won’t be back again until August 12, when we welcome all the new faces that Theo acquires between now and the trading deadline next week. See you then.

Week Log: Second Half Kick-Off Edition

It’s the dog days all right. NHL and NBA hot stoves have cooled; NFL OTAs are done and training camp awaits; and the three-day MLB All-Star break has just concluded. We stand ready to roll into the official start of the second half of the Red Sox season, so let’s kick it off there.

Red Sox

At 51-37 at the break, Boston Blood Sox calls it a laudable first half for the Sox, but the fourth-best record in all of baseball may still leave them out in the cold come October. Touching All The Bases has the best and worst of the first half of a season they think shouldn’t start until May 1. Beantown Sports Observer looks at the castoffs and journeymen who have kept the Sox within striking distance of the A.L. East lead. Jessica Isner has Erin Andrews, in particular, looking at one of Boston’s first half surprises.

Red Sox Monster defends MLB’s All-Star Game as the greatest in professional sports. SawxBlog concedes it is head-over-heels the best among all-star games, but finds it a ridiculous determinant of home field advantage in the biggest series of the year. Mass Hysteria would rather watch the All-Star Game than get a pizza with Hanley Ramirez.

Fenway West thinks David Ortiz may have earned his option year after winning the All-Star Home Run Derby Monday night. BoSox Injection says it’s tough not to be happy for Big Papi. Boston Sports Then And Now hopes this win will do for Ortiz what the Three-Point Contest did for Paul Pierce. Peter’s Red Sox Forever has Papi’s baserunning costing the A.L. home field advantage in the World Series.

If you’re looking forward to seeing Clay Buchholz or Victor Martinez right out of the blocks after the All-Star Break, Brownie Points will set you straight. Fenway Nation has Jacoby Ellsbury’s account of his injuries contrasting that of Sox brass. Hit And Run With Dan Roche has Josh Beckett hitting 96 down in Pawtucket, and on schedule to return mid-week next week. Baseball Heavy calls Beckett a good pitcher but a questionable human being.

Red Sox Reality Check takes pleasure in watching Jon Lester evolve into one of the elite pitchers in baseball. Surviving Grady pleads for a return of The Pappet.

Boston Dirt Dogs pays homage to George Steinbrenner, while The Crowe’s Nest reminisces of his only encounter with The Boss. Subway Squawker Lisa is shocked by the outpouring of sympathy and tributes from Yawkey Way. Toeing The Rubber doesn’t think that baseball lost ‘a good one’ so much as ‘a scandalous one’ on Tuesday.

Clubhouse Insider reports that the price hasn’t dropped for Kansas City OF David DeJesus. Fire Brand of the American League takes us behind the plate, as they examine the catcher’s craft of calling a game.

Patriots

Just another couple of weeks until camp! Pats Pulpit thinks the Pats went a long way in rebuilding their locker room by drafting character players in April. NE Patriots Draft has the NFL with a lot of work to do in signing first- and second-round picks, and the Pats are no exception as talks with first-rounder CB Devin McCourty are progressing slowly.

It Is What It Is has Terrell Owens willing to take less money and a lesser role to come to the Patriots. Having T.O. alongside Randy Moss is enough to give Masshole Sports a wet dream. Pats Fans examines the curious OTA of second-rounder TE Rob Gronkowski, whom some pundits bill as the complete player. Extra Points thinks Sebastian Vollmer is the biggest part of the Pats’ future on the offensive line. Patriots Daily has Tom Brady a polarizing figure in the ever-present war between optimists and pessimists.

Odds & Sods
. . . an unstructured wandering through the Boston blogging world

Steinbrenner was the second loss in the Yankees family this week. And Another Thing . . . remembers PA announcer Bob Sheppard, who evoked a semi-religious experience with his glorious tones. Although the Voice of God will never echo in Yankee Stadium again, its memories induce shivers and goosebumps through Greg Cavanaugh.

Green Street has new C’s center Jermaine O’Neal subordinating play time for the chance to win a championship. We’re Just Saying looks at the spectacle that was ‘The Decision.’

Last weekend’s 2-0 win over the L.A. Galaxy did wonders to bail out New Enlgand Revolution‘s mid-season progress report on five preseason predictions.

The Iroquois may have gifted lacrosse to the world. but Lacrosse Examiner has them being denied reentry into the U.S. if they play in the World Lacrosse Championships under their Iroquois passports.

With football around the corner, I’d love to hear about some good Pats blogs you like but never see on Week Log. Some of our old favorites won’t be back this season, so fresh blood is needed. Drop me a line. As always, I’m at [email protected]