Is Boston.com Ever Going To Address The Eric Wilbur Embarrassment?

It worked, Eric.

By calling this site out, you’re getting the attention you so pathetically crave. OK, lets go over your column from Wednesday and see what we can take from it.

Still waiting. Silence from Patriot Place.

This is the REAL crime that has been committed here.

Oh, yes, the New England Patriots have acted and released Aaron Hernandez in the wake of his murder allegations, describing the process as “the right thing to do,” but no member has yet to speak about the matter publicly and shed some light on how an organization that preaches righteousness swung and missed like Mark Bellhorn when it came to determining their tight end’s character. A week ago, the transaction seemed logical. But with every hour producing a new tale of just how messed up Hernandez is, it’s only logical to wonder how much the Patriots knew, and how much they ignored.

So was releasing him immediately and cutting off any future payments NOT the right thing to do? I’m confused. The Mark Bellhorn reference is outstanding. And timely.

I mean, you don’t just deliver $40 million contracts out of faith.

No, sometimes you hire private investigators, follow the subject around, gauge his fitness for the market, and still hand out $142 million contracts.

Instead, we know what we’ll get. Bill Belichick will take the podium later this month at the dawn of training camp and dodge every question tossed his way with regards to “what’s best for the team,” the same way he deftly handled the New Hampshire political reporters and whatever other ratings-grabbing brigade was sent to Foxborough on the first day of Tim Tebow coverage. It’s what Bill does best, after all. And it’s tired.

Again. We’re on to the REAL crime. “Bill doesn’t tell us anything. Whah!

“It is what it is” ain’t what it was in this particular case. The more we learn about Hernandez’s past, the more the Patriots owe us all an explanation. How exactly was their judgment clouded so impeccably, even as former teammates like Matt Light opine in the aftermath about what a bad guy he was? With all due apologies to the salacious hound dogs at the Patriots’ temple over at Boston Sports Media Watch, the status quo that Belichick preaches won’t cut it.

I’m really confused about this whole “owe us” thing. First of all, who is “us?” Fans? Media? Civilization as a whole? Why is this owed? Do other privately held companies hold press conferences when one of their employees is charged with a crime? When the Globe has yet another plagiarism scandal, will they sit there and take questions from the Herald and channels 4,5 and 7?

Have other former teammates spoken out against Hernandez? They must have, because Wilbur says teammates – plural. Other than some nameless ex-teammates saying Hernandez was a loner – not exactly a scathing condemnation – but other than Light, and his quotes were mysteriously not followed up on by his interviewer, the only other public quotes have come from Deion Branch, and could not be more different than Light. So Hernandez apparently had at least some of his teammates snowed too.

Patriots temple? Is that also a shot at the Krafts? I’m not saying it is, and I’m not saying it isn’t. I do like the “salacious hound dogs” reference – another great word picture. Horny dogs. OK.

The fans and the rest of the NFL deserve more knowledge than that.

Why? Curiosity? I mean, if say, Dan Shaughnessy’s son was arrested for, say, assaulting a police officer, does Dan and the Globe hold a conference to tell us more? Don’t we deserve more knowledge?

It’s difficult to believe that the Patriots, a franchise that has prided itself on background checks, didn’t know that there was more to Hernandez than met the eye. Hell, the marijuana issues aside, Hernandez’s past reads like a Spenser novel. How soon until we get an Aaron Hernandez special edition of “Clue?”

Wait, wait, wait – “prided itself on background checks” – is that even remotely true? Or is Eric just making stuff up? What does that even mean? “Jonathan – we sure nailed another background check! Put that one on the wall!” Seems an odd thing to be prideful over.

A Spenser novel! Awesome. Special edition of Clue! Just stop it! I can’t handle this incredibly witty and relevant humor!

The Patriots want to lead you to believe that they had a model, reformed citizen on their hands in Hernandez, that any troubled past was merely a matter of puff, puff, pass the dutchie on the left-hand side and nothing more. His teammates sure seemed to know. How did his employers miss the boat so egregiously?

They’re leading us to believe that by cutting him immediately? Musical Youth reference? Awesome.

Again, that “teammates” – plural – wording. Does Eric know something he’s not sharing with us? We demand to know!

Fans will line up this weekend to exchange their “Pro Shop-purchased” Hernandez jerseys during the Patriots’ PR stint to put the past behind them. It’s OK to continue wearing it apparently if you bought your jersey at Sports Authority. If the Pats were serious about ridding the streets and stands of its tainted criminal’s name on people’s backs, no questions should be asked. They can handle that as they deftly proved with Hernandez.

I don’t have a ton to argue with here. If they’re going to take #81 jerseys back, take ‘em all back. Eric, we have common ground here. A start, right?

There has to be a disgruntled backlash in the locker room, and not just because the team released a guy for reasons other than having diabetes. Hernandez’s criminal past could have affected Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, or any other teammate the same way it did victim Odin Lloyd. What if Stevan Ridley was the one to find out that Hernandez may have murdered two people in cold blood last summer? Do you think he would skirt any sort of cover up from a guy who theoretically took three days to plot Lloyd’s murder and still butchered the process so badly that the likes of Clouseau would consider the case a waste of time?

Yes, there HAS to be. Eric says so. Ah, the little Florio-type slam on the Kyle Love release, nice to work that in there.

Now, is Wilbur saying that we should be mad at the Patriots because Hernandez could’ve killed Tom Brady? (You already did that, Eric.) It sounds like it. What the heck does that sentence about Ridley even mean? I’ve read it about 20 times and it still doesn’t make any sense. “skirt any sort of cover up”?

To say the Patriots made a huge error in tossing their good faith at Hernandez is an understatement, yet we’ve heard nothing from the owner, the coach, or the quarterback about how they went so astray. Unless you’ve already Hale-Bopped your allegiance, doesn’t that make you in the least bit frustrated?

No. Not at all. And being a Patriots fan doesn’t exactly equate with a suicide cult, another nice reference. I’m waiting for the Globe to say they erred in hiring Mike Barnicle, Patricia Smith or Ron Borges.

Sorry, the Patriots owe you that much.

Again this “owe” thing. And this time it’s YOU they owe. Not “us.”

This is no longer a matter of what did they know and when did they know it, but a situation that needs some semblance of closure from the franchise. They were the ones who took a fourth-round flyer when nobody else would, after all. They were the ones who awarded him with millions just days within a suspected double murder. They were the ones who kept him around, the reason he was in our community.

Wait, in the first paragraph you said it was logical to wonder what and when. Now its about closure. For me, closure came when they cut him. That was enough of a statement to me. They didn’t even know the charges. They didn’t stick by him like the Ravens did with Ray Lewis. The Ravens made Lewis the face of the franchise. The Patriots cut all ties then and there. Actions can say things better and more eloquently than words at times. What more needs to be said?

Three men are dead that we know of. Who knows what the evening will bring.

Thanks for the reminder, I kind of forgot about that after the whole column was about the culpability of the Patriots in the matter and what they OWE you, us, whoever.

One thing we’re pretty sure of, it won’t include a Patriots apology or admittance of fault. That’s not the Patriot Way, of course. Then again, as we’re rapidly discovering, the Patriots Way is a bogus load of tripe.

As is this column. Spare me the hand-wringing over over a media-created standard that has been supposedly violated.

And we continue to wait, as an exposed institution shows its true, cowardly colors.

The most accurate line of the entire column.

Ron Borges Caught In Another Lie, Mazz Making Stuff Up, and Peter King’s Laughable Rationalization

Just another day in the world of the Boston sports media.

In the morning, we had Pete Sheppard taking on Ron Borges on the Dennis and Callahan Morning Show. Borges, as usual sounded like a raving madman, screaming, yelling and cursing on the air- getting bleeped out, shouting down any accusations or points made against him. As far as defenses go, its a reliable one, if you’re on the offensive and changing the talking points every two seconds, it’s going to be hard to build that stable case against you in the short time you have on the air.

Of course, the case against Borges was made a long time ago, and it has only been added to since.

One accusation that Sheppard made was that Borges had had dinner at Drew Bledsoe’s house, and how this closeness was part of the reason Borges turned on Bill Belichick so venomously when Belichick named Brady the starter even when Bledsoe was ready to return in 2001.

Borges went ballistic on Sheppard, screaming, asking what evidence he had of this supposed dinner, and when pressed on it yelled “NO I DIDN’T” and demanded again to have Sheppard reveal evidence.

Here’s your evidence, Ron: From Drew Bledsoe himself:

So there you go. Yet another documented case of Ron Borges lying.

Gerry Callahan was his usual loathsome self during the show,  at one point dropping into his whiny, feminine voice to say that Sheppard would now be wearing a fireman’s helmet to the games and leading the cheers of P-A-T-S, PATS!

When the topic of Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning throwing the ball on the Packers with five minutes to go came up, the goalposts were shifted again, instead of it being only the evil Patriots and Bill Belichick that do this, it became “we’re only concerned with Tom Brady and him getting hurt.

In the afternoon, Tony Massarotti spent the afternoon yelling that Jermaine Cunningham was clearly much bigger than he was in previous seasons and that the suspension was definitely not for Adderall.  He presented absolutely zero evidence of this, and really,  how could he? How much is he around the team? I’m not convinced that he even watches the games.

Meanwhile, if you want to know about Adderall, and why NFL players might want to take it, and why it is banned, Tom E Curran has it all.

A GIS search of Cunningham shows no obvious changes in his body since joining the Patriots. Some modest increase in strength, but no Barry Bonds-like transformation. Yet Massarotti was screaming that if you didn’t see, it, you’re an idiot, a moron and just plain stupid.

I continue to be baffled as to way anyone who actually enjoys sports and their teams would listen to this type of programming willingly. I’m clearly old-school, maybe not this old school, but definitely from before the time when sports radio only existed to dump on the local teams 24/7.

The running-up-the-score hypocrisy will not die. Peter King in his MMQB, Tuesday Edition answered an email from a New England NFL fan:

BELICHICK DOES IT ALL THE TIME. COUGHLIN, NOT SO MUCH. “How about a team that is up by four touchdowns (38-10) with five minutes left and keeping the starting quarterback in and is STILL throwing the ball? Man, that Belichick is one evil…. oh wait… that was Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning against Green Bay Sunday night. When it’s not Belichick, the moral outrage goes away, right?”
– Tom, Portsmouth, N.H.

It’s a little different. Belichick’s done this often over the years. You need more than one hand to count the times Tom Brady’s been in a total blowout in the middle of the fourth quarter. But Coughlin had a reason, I believe. His offense had been struggling for four weeks, and he has every right to use the game to do what he can to make sure his team is back on track for the stretch run. People wouldn’t be killing Belichick if it were a one-time occurrence. Obviously, it’s not.

My mind is still spinning at this.

It’s OK for Coughlin to use a real, live game to work on things to make his team better and make sure they’re in top form for the postseason. Bill Belichick does it, and it’s just out of spite and poor sportsmanship. Got it.

I mean, it’s not like Saint Tony Dungy ever did this sort of thing with Peyton Manning. Oh, wait.

I think this might be the more accurate explanation for why only Belichick gets flayed for this.

The other thing to wonder is how often are other teams even in this position? It’s all well and good to say that Coughlin, or any other coach doesn’t leave their QB in with a 35-point lead, or isn’t passing under five minutes with a 35-point lead. How many teams routinely have 35-point leads?

Still on the Patriots, with the Gil Santos era winding down, the subject of his replacement is gaining momentum.

John Rooke, The Obvious Choice To Take Over For Gil Santos – Derek Havens looks at why Rooke and his 20 years of working for the Patriots make him the best choice for the job. I’m on-board with this, certainly if it keeps Gary Tanguay or Jon Meterparel away from the gig.

Meanwhile, Red Sox reporters are waiting for something to happen.

Abraham of course, wrote a Lester column himself, but that was sort of his point. Right now, the Red Sox media is jumping on any scrap of information and writing about it.

I thought Abraham and Chad Finn had a nice 1-2 punch on the Jon Lester for Wil Myers rumor(?) Is it even a rumor? Speculation?

Lester for a prospect? Here’s why it’s crazy – Abraham

Jon Lester for Wil Myers? Why not? – Finn

Just What Is A “Produced” Touchdown?

This drab little note in Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback column this week has provided considerable fodder for the likes of Felger of Mazz.

Opposing passers have produced more touchdowns than Tom Brady, 19-18.

This is just a weird sentence. “Produced more touchdowns?” What is the definition he’s using here?  Solely passing TD’s?

If we’re going by strictly “passing” yes, opposing QB’s have thrown 19 TDs, and Tom Brady has thrown 18. Brady also has two rushing touchdowns this season, and Kevin Kolb in week two rushed for a touchdown against the Patriots.

It would seem logical that “produced” by the quarterback would also include TD’s scored personally by the quarterback. So when we get there, we’re at 20-20 on the season.

By using this stat, some (Felger and Mazz) have made the completely inexplicable leap to the conclusion that Brady has or is losing it, and the Patriots have lost the advantage they had of having Tom Brady as quarterback. They’re going by King’s 19-18 stat (Has Dan Shaughnessy jumped on that one yet?) and saying that the QB doesn’t even matter.

Whoa.

Just another example of the surface-deep analysis you get from the likes of these guys.

The Patriots have 14 rushing touchdowns on the season. That’s the most in the NFL, by the way. (By way of comparison, opponents have five.) That’s 32 offensive touchdowns. Again, that’s the most in the NFL. Does the QB only produce the passing ones? He has nothing to do with drives that end in rushing touchdowns?

So what if Tom Brady had thrown for 27 touchdowns at this point and the team had rushed for five? Same 32 touchdowns. Would Peter King and Felger and Mazz be happy with that?

The likes of Felger and Mazz would be bewailing the absence of the running game that could prolong Brady’s career. They’re too reliant on Brady, they don’t have any balance to their offense!

The Patriots have enough problems right now. The quarterback isn’t one of them. Bending stats and not giving the entire picture is just fraudulent muck-raking, something some around here are very proficient in.

Playing Stupid And Making Big Bucks – The Life Of A Sports Media Superstar

INT. MASSAROTTI HOME – 8:00 P.M. APRIL 11TH

A weary TONY arrives home after a long, arduous day in the 98.5 The Sports Hub Studios.

TONY

Honey, I’m home!

MRS. MASSAROTTI

Hi Dear! I just put the kids to bed, and your dinner is in the oven. How was your day?

TONY
(sighs)

Just another day at the office. I made a complete and utter fool of myself, just as I am paid to do. I actually made the statement that Rajon Rondo’s 18 point, 15 assist performance against the Heat is proof that he is NOT a great player in this league!

MRS. MASSAROTTI
(confused)

Um, OK.

TONY
(squeaking excitedly)

YES! Because if he WAS a great player, he’d do that every night! See? It’s brilliant! I totally ignore the part where he’s had double-digit assists in 19 straight games – the longest streak in the NBA in 20 years! I also ignore the part where, since 1986 there have only been seven triple-doubles with at least 10 points, 10 rebounds and 20 assists and Rondo has the last five of them! Not a great player! I sounded so dumb!

MRS. MASSAROTTI
(placatingly)

Well honey, you know we’re still really proud of you..

TONY
(interrupts)

Wait, there’s more! I’m learning, I really am. Instead of “You’re absolutely right, Mike.” I’m learning to mix it up a little, saying things like “No doubt, Mike.” and “Listen Mike, I can’t argue that.” I’m really getting a grip on this whole “play dumb on the radio” role! I also insulted the Celtics fans, and suggested that maybe, just maybe the team is “juiced up” and then Mike and I suggested that Terry Francona is just like Josh Beckett. He’s only interested in finding the snitch, not admitting that he really was a drug-addled philanderer like Hohler said he was!

MRS MASSAROTTI
(sighs)

Well, today was payday, right? You’re such a good provider for the kids and I. Even if you do refer to them as “little monsters” in that Dragon Naturally Speaking commercial you do. How much did you make off that again? Never mind, I can see you’re exhausted from thinking so much today.

TONY
(relaxes)

Thanks honey. I do it all for you guys. It not always easy playing a complete imbecile, but the pay makes it worth it. You know what I’ve decided to post on Twitter tomorrow morning?

EXT. TONY’S COMPUTER 8:39 A.M. TODAY

[blackbirdpie id="190418910011588609"]

2011 Approval Ratings – Chris Gasper

Chris Gasper is an online columnist for Boston.com.

Gasper joined the Boston Globe in 2002, covering sports for the Globe North section. During his career he’s covered high school and college sports, as well as a healthy amount of time covering the Patriots. During the Mike Reiss years, he and Reiss were a very strong combination on the beat. He moved into the columnist role when Boston.com became more of a seperate entity from the Globe, though his columns still occasionally appear in the Globe.

Gasper can be seen and heard on many outlets, including Comcast SportsNet, 98.5 The SportsHub (where he makes a nice balance to Felger and Massarotti as an in-studio guest on their show), the Patriots pregame shows on 98.5 and SportsCenter 5 OT.

Chris Gasper 2011 Approval Ratings
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2011 Approval Ratings – Tony Massarotti

Tony Massarotti is the co-host of the Felger and Mazz show on 98.5 The SportsHub.

A Waltham native, Massarotti also hosts The Baseball Reporters on 98.5, and is a Boston.com sports columnist. He joined the Boston Herald as a sports intern in 1989, joining the likes of Michael Felger, Bill Simmons, Michael Silverman and Paul Perillo. In 1994 he started covering the Red Sox for the Herald, a focus he held until he left the paper in 2008. He then joined Boston.com, and in August 2009, he and Felger started their popular afternoon drive show on 98.5, which has unseated long time ratings champ Glenn Ordway and The Big Show on WEEI. Interestingly, Massarotti, like Felger had been a frequent co-host on the WEEI show in the past. The duo signed a new deal with the station in April of this year.

Once a dogged and capable baseball reporter, Massarotti now focuses on playing the contrarian, especially when it comes to the Patriots – a franchise and fan base that he clearly loathes. He has also proclaimed his love for Derek Jeter, and does an absolutely horrible voice impression of Boston sports fans.

Massarotti  has written or co-written several books, including Dynasty: The Inside Story of How the Red Sox Became a Baseball Powerhouse, as well as bios with Tim Wakefield

 

Tony Massarotti 2011 Approval Ratings
Total Votes: 1404 Started: July 20, 2011 Back to Vote Screen

Avoiding Super Bowl Media Crush No Easy Feat

Much of the time, I tend to take a very Boston-centric view to the sports world. While I certainly keep up with the sports world outside of New England, there much out there that I could take or leave. The Super Bowl media hype for a game not involving the Patriots is one of those. Especially when much of the media focus seems intent on trying to compare Ben Roethlisberger to Tom Brady or trying to determine the real “team of the decade” – even though we’re firmly in a new decade by this point.

When Sunday comes, I’ll be watching the game, but until then, I’m not too interested in the coverage leading up to it. I can’t avoid it, but that doesn’t mean I’m enthralled by it.

Patriots should think outside the system – Mike Reiss does tie a Super Bowl angle to the Patriots, looking at pass rushers LaMarr Woodley and Clay Matthews, both of whom were available to the Patriots in the draft, and wonders if it is time for Bill Belichick to adjust his thinking on the position.

Twitter’s got the NFL by the tail – Tom E Curran has an interesting look at the problems that Twitter is causing for the NFL, as the league can’t control the things being tweeted by its players.

Management was so impressed with Tony “Miserable” Massarotti’s straw-man-laden Boston.com column yesterday – “Don’t Count The Lakers Out Yet” that they repackaged it and put in the Globe sports section today – “Too early to plan Celtics parade.” I’m wondering exactly who these people are who are counting the Lakers out and already planning the Celtics parade route for June.

Some, like Chris Forsberg, are writing that the Celtics the best, and getting better – but no one is saying that they are unbeatable and are a lock to win the NBA title. Gerry Callahan writes today that the Celtics are Leaving it all on floor – but he also acknowledges the possibility that the Celtics could “run out of gas and come up short of a championship.”

It’s just like Massarotti to take a very convincing and satisfying victory and do his best to discount it and make fans miserable.

Did Kevin Garnett Turn Down A Ball Boy With A Bin Laden Reference? – Deadspin.com follows up on the disappearing Tweets of J. A. Adande and Marc J Spears about KG’s treatment of a Lakers ball boy. They report:

Twitter being what it is is also what led both writers to take down the messages within minutes of being posted. We’re told that the sheer number of people retweeting the messages — thousands of them — were overwhelming the writers, making Twitter unusable. The easiest thing to do was to simply delete the Tweet and move on, the news already having been put out there.

So there you go. No misquotes, no warnings from Big Brother Stern. Just the limits of mobile technology.

I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t sound just right to me.  Adande in particular doesn’t tweet enough for this to impact his ability to use Twitter. Deleting the original message has a limited impact. If people are using a third-party twitter client – which many people do – the message is still going to appear. Most of those clients also have the ability to turn off viewing of retweets, an option that the writers could’ve used to keep on working. There was no limit of mobile technology in play here. Limited knowledge by the user, perhaps, not the technology.

Celtics aiming to keep focus – Julian Benbow has the Celtics looking to avoid a letdown in Sacramento.

Red Sox brass discuss Pedroia, Yanks, TV ratings – Sean McAdam reviews the Red Sox “town meeting” held last night. Michael Vega  and Alex Speier also cover the event.

Sox just want Beckett to be Beckett – Scott Lauber says that management doesn’t want Beckett to try to do too much.

Bruins find a keeper in Steve Kampfer  – Joe Haggerty examines the circumstances which led to the defenseman landing in Boston.

Bruins may shut down Marc Savard – Joe McDonald has Peter Chiarelli acknowledging that shutting down the center might be the best decision.

You’ll Have To Pay To Read Shaughnessy Starting in 2011 (Perhaps Not)

The Boston Globe announced today that starting next year, they will break the content of the Globe and Boston.com into two separate sites. BostonGlobe.com will require a paid subscription to access, while Boston.com will remain free.

Globe to offer two websites: one free, one pay

So soon you’ll need to pay for the privilege of reading Dan Shaughnessy. On the other hand, apparently you’ll get all the Tony Massarotti and Chris Gasper you want for absolutely free!

Update…

The following was posted on Twitter by a Boston.com sports producer:

The good news about all of this two websites business is that all of sports will be free. Sports fans have nothing to worry about.Thu Sep 30 20:13:32 via Seesmic Desktop

Now I have to say, if true, that is extremely smart on the part of the Globe. Sports articles are among the most visited on the website, (some people only visit the sports articles) and to continue to offer them from free would be a win for many consumers.

I can’t help but think that the amount of competition out there in this market for sports coverage lead to the decision to keep it free. Who would pay just for the Globe’s take on sports when they can choose from dozens of other outlets?

Globe Staff Going Whole Hog On Brady Holdout

C’mon guys.

The Boston Globe. Allegedly THE paper of record for New England sports, is embarrassing themselves with this Tom Brady holdout garbage.

Albert Breer’s lede on the Extra Points blog:

With all the noise of a Tom Brady holdout (which I hear pretty strongly isn’t happening … and was never happening), it’s worth asking this question: How could it really come to this?

Um, what? Yeah, How could it really come to this which was never happening? Does that lede even make a modicum of sense?

Breer then goes on to quote colleague Chris Gasper, who has a few gems of his own:

He shouldn’t have to threaten not to show up to camp to get a new contract.

What threats would those be? The ones solely created by the media to “move the needle?”

The Patriots are playing a dangerous game here with their most valuable asset.

As far as I can tell, they’re not playing any game here.

The CBA has become a rather convenient bit of CYA for the Patriots not to cut Brady a big, fat check.

Right. That’s really all it is. How stupid does he think they are?

Tony Massarotti took his whack at the situation earlier this week…practically begging Brady to hold out. Not only hold out, but not play the entire season.

Meanwhile, Peyton Manning sits in the exact same situation. The only difference being he’s getting a higher base salary than Brady. But isn’t he also risking $50 million dollars by showing up for Colts camp?

Congratulations, Boston Globe, for abandoning any real reporting in favor of trying your hardest to simply stir the pot.

Mainstream Media Review: Boston.com/sports

As Bruce is on vacation this week. BSMW will be featuring reviews of some of the websites and content from several Mainstream Media outlets this week.

Today, we’re taking a look at the sports section of Boston.com and the ties it shares with the Boston Globe sports section.

Boston.com was once the go-to site for pretty much all things Boston sports. For many people, it still is. Several new competitors have muscled into the scene, but Boston.com is still a monster in terms of traffic, and often leads the way in integrating new technologies and methods into its content. It’s constantly changing, being updated and evolving. That’s a good thing. If you’re looking for the very latest breaking news, they generally make it pretty easy to find there.

The sports section is a very busy place, in fact, it can be pretty overwhelming if you land there looking for something specific. (Go ahead, go there right now and find Chad Finn’s Touching All The Bases blog.  Go ahead. I’m timing you.)

The page is broken down into sections by sport, which is nice, but each sub-page is just as busy as the home page. Each team page has their blog in the upper right corner, making those at least easy to find.

Advertising is a necessary evil on websites. I have plenty of it here. We all need to find a way to pay the bills and make some money off the content that is being put out. A problem I have with Boston.com and the Globe site is some of the obnoxious-acting ads that they use. The worst one, to me, is when I’m going through the Boston Globe sports stories in the morning. I like to link to the full-length version, mostly as a convenience to the reader – if I do it, you don’t have to – that sort if thing. Anyway, something is rigged with some of those “Single Page” links so that when you click on them, it doesn’t open the single page version, instead it serves you a pop-up ad. Do it again, and the same thing happens. Finally on the third attempt, your single page article will load. There does seem to be some sort of cap on these, so once you’ve had to do it a few times, it stops and actually loads what you want. Minor thing, but incredibly annoying.

Now, as for the content, I go every day without fail and check out the Globe sports stories. Using that link doesn’t even bring me to the Boston.com/sports side, it’s just the stories from the Globe that morning. For the actual Boston.com/sports site, I can honestly say that the only time I’ve been going there on my own recently – just going to the homepage, not following a link to a specific article/post – is to find Finn’s latest blog entry. (By the way, if you haven’t found it yet, you need to scroll down the right side of the page, find the “Blogs” widget, and scroll down inside that until you come to the link for the blog.)

The Globehas had a lot of staff turnover in the last few years, but columnists Dan Shaughnessy and Bob Ryan are constants. On the baseball beat, Amalie Benjamin and newcomer (via The Journal NewsPeter Abrahamdo a very nice job with the Red Sox, while another holdover, Nick Cafardo takes care of the national beat and Sunday notes. The Patriots are covered by Shalise Manza Young, recently brought over from the Providence Journal, and Monique Walker, with Albert Breer, hired last season, serving as national football writer. The Celtics are covered by beat writer Julian Benbow, with Frank Dell’Apa also a reporter, and Gary Washburn, hired last August as the national guy. The Bruins are covered by Fluto Shinzawa, with Hall of Famer Kevin Paul Dupont taking the NHL beat.

Boston.com has two of it’s own columnists, who generally don’t appear in the print version of the paper. WBZ-FM afternoon co-host and former Boston Herald writer Tony Massarotti is one, and former Globe Patriots writer Chris Gasper is the other. Charles P. Pierce also has been doing quite a bit for them aside from his work for the Boston Globe Sunday Magazine, but his contributions on Boston.com are mostly as a blogger. Massarotti’s role has been reduced since he took on the radio gig, but he’s still a regular contributor.

An issue I have with much of the content on the sports pages of Boston.com is tone. I’m making a distinction here between the content published in the Boston Globe and that which appears on Boston.com. The former is generally even-handed and fair. Most of the editorial content on the latter seems to be aimed at “tweaking” the readers. This is especially true for Massarotti, Gasper and the blog entries of Albert Breer. (Is it just me, or is every single blog post that Breer puts up worded in such a way so as to tweak Patriots fans?)  That’s good for stirring up attention and getting lots of comments and page views, but it doesn’t do it for me.

The good part of Boston.com is the sheer amount of content that is put up every day. Beyond the four majors, there are blogs for college sports, high school sports, Eric Wilbur’s Boston Sports blog, a marathon blog, golf blog, and a good soccer blog that not only has Revolution items, but soccer from all over the world.

As previously mentioned, when news is breaking, Boston.com is a great place to head first. The aforementioned Finn, who is an editor for the site, is generally the one posting updates in the various blogs on these breaking news items. For this reason alone, it is a site that is worth checking out regularly. If you can dig and sort through all the noise, there is plenty of other worthwhile content here as well.

Tomorrow: BostonHerald.com/sports.