June 15th, And The Red Sox Season Is Over

It sure feels that way, doesn’t it?

School’s not out yet, but Red Sox done – Scott Lauber has the team out of contention before they can even launch their “Calling all kids” campaign in earnest.

It’s time for the Red Sox to call for a changeup – Chris Gasper says “We’re officially in Bobby Valentine, avert-your-eyes territory, people.

Red Sox’ chosen path has proven to be wrong one – Rob Bradford says the Red Sox have lost their way.

Boston Red Sox’s 2015 season to date is worse than the 2012 Bobby V debacle; has the team hit rock bottom? – Christopher Smith with another reference to the Bobby V experience.

Four is enough of those. I think we get the point. The Red Sox are bad. Really bad. If they’re not going to fire the Manager and GM, what are they going to do?

Maybe this can make us all feel better:

Not bad, not bad.

At the end of last week (I was away) the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) put out a report on the Wells Report. – Deflating Deflategate

Their conclusions are that the Patriots did not tamper with the footballs and that the Wells Report was deeply flawed.

A bit later Boston Globe NFL writer Ben Volin sent out the following Tweet: (since deleted)

Ben Volin ‏@BenVolin
Kraft Foundation is a corporate supporter of the American Enterprise Institute, author of latest #Deflategate report http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/american-enterprise-

In his eagerness to perhaps get something to discredit the report or nail the Krafts and Patriots on, he failed, epically, in his job. Later:

Nice job. Any repercussions for having to apologize to an entity that you cover as part of your job? Apparently not.

Finally:

What he’d give to have heard this conversation … –  Mark Farinella would’ve loved to have listened in on the conversation between Bill Belichick and Brandon Spikes following the car incident last week. He also gives details of a time when he and other reporters were able to listen in on Bill Belichick’s private conversation. The media version of Spygate.

Sports Writers Hall has home at Fenway – The home of the Red Sox will today become the home of PEN New England’s new Sports Writers Hall of Fame. The inaugural class will be Grantland Rice, Red Smith, Ring Lardner and W.C. Heinz.

I would have just assumed that Dan Shaughnessy would’ve been included in that class.

BUTLER SUSPENDED FOR THREE WEEKS….or something…

Quick – which is the bigger story:

A) David Ortiz benched again against a lefthanded pitcher amidst a deep slump.

B) Malcom Butler has to sit out offseason field drills in June for a few days because his flight was cancelled.

Based on reaction yesterday, it was B, definitely B.

What does that say about the state of the Red Sox and Patriots, respectively? For all the insistence from the old guard that this is a Red Sox town, even with the Celtics and Bruins out of the playoffs, and the Patriots still about seven weeks away from the start of training camp, the Red Sox are mostly an afterthought.

The Butler news, first broken by Jeff Howe, immediately set off reactions on Twitter and sports radio. It continued into the evening on television. National guys like Albert Breer and Ian Rapoport weighed in.

While the initial report was three weeks, it actually is more like two, and we don’t know how many actual on-field practices the team had in that span. They’re allowed up to 10 days of OTA’s in total, plus a mandatory minicamp.

Patriots.com has their OTA schedule thusly:

Bill Belichick’s team will hold its 10 OTA sessions on May 26, May 28-29, June 1, June 3-4, June 8-9 and June 11-12, leading up to the mandatory mini-camp June 16-18.

I’ve heard, but not confirmed that Butler was on the field this week. June 8-9. He is supposed to be on the field today and presumably tomorrow.

So it would seem, at most, that Butler missed six days of on-field OTA sessions.

Boom:

A little different than:

THREE WEEKS!!!!!

OK, six days. And the whole time he was in facility, working out, watching film, etc etc.

Still, you might say, holding a guy out for 60% of the OTA sessions because his flight was cancelled?

I take it like this, the Patriots think Butler is a pretty special talent. They also know that since the Super Bowl, he has been lauded and fetted and fussed over wherever he’s gone. This sends a message that that time is over. It’s time to focus, it’s time to be fully committed. Would they do this to Tom Brady? Probably not. Would they do it to Daxton Swanson? I don’t think so either.

Butler is a guy they’re going to need to contribute and they need his complete focus. This sends that message.

Edit: Tom Curran says it much better than I: Butler helps Belichick gets message out

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Patriots TE Davis looks to make good on second chance – The Patriots released TE Tim Wright this morning, which makes this article on Fred Davis by Phil Perry even more relevant.

Red Sox are still searching for real Rusney Castillo – Rob Bradford looks at a player we are all desperately trying to figure out.

Claude Julien knows Bruins need to change – Fluto Shinzawa has the Bruins coach acknowledging the need to make adjustments, while…

Meet the new Claude, same as the old Claude – Joe Haggerty had a much different takeaway.

Sticky situation for David Ortiz – Scott Lauber says things are starting to get awkward around the Red Sox slugger.

Kentucky’s Dakari Johnson tries to show Celtics what he can do – Adam Himmelsbach looks at a guy who could be an intriguing prospect, having not had much opportunity in college to really shine.

Is The BuzzFeed Era At Boston.com Over?

When the separation of Boston.com and BostonGlobe.com was made, it seemed the aim of Boston.com was to become something of a buzzfeed clone. A whole lot of clickbait, not a lot of substance.

Over the last year, many changes have been made. Bloggers have been let go. More recently the layout of the site has been undergoing changes – right now if you want to read Chad Finn’s latest columns, you don’t go to the Chad Finn page. Last night another shoe dropped when Bill Speros, better known as “Obnoxious Boston Fan” on Boston.com made the following Tweets:

Interesting. Seems like they’re looking to get out of the clickbait business. Which is a positive.

However, the title “Obnoxious Boston Fan” was something of a misnomer. That wasn’t how Speros wrote most of the time. He was thoughtful, capable of great storytelling and reporting. Seems odd that they would cite what they did as the reason for letting him go.

It will be interesting to see what is next for Boston.com. The current content seems to revolve around Finn and Eric Wilbur, with Adam Kaufman and others chipping in.

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Boston Red Sox have history with first-rounder Andrew Benintendi; GM Ben Cherington: ‘It was obvious who we were taking – Jen McCaffrey with a look at the Arkansas outfielder that the Red Sox took with the 7th overall pick last night in the MLB draft.

Junichi Tazawa has come a long way, on and off field – Enjoyed this Peter Abraham look at the Red Sox reliever.

Don’t look now, Red Sox might have discovered their next All-Star shortstop – Rob Bradford pegs Xander Bogaerts as a potential All Star – this season. Scott Lauber also looks at the development of the 22-year-old.

Celtics aren’t as smitten with Kevin Love – Steve Bulpett is bumming me out a little bit. Not because I’m high on Kevin Love, but because of his comment that the Celtics may actually be further from contention than they were a year ago.

Patriots’ signing of CB Derek Cox sparks memories of solid Bill Belichick trade – Mike Reiss revisits a 2009 trade that allowed Jacksonville to draft Cox, but also netted the Patriots two cornerstone players.

What does Carl Soderberg’s upcoming departure from Bruins mean for Loui Eriksson? – DJ Bean examines what breaking up a duo that was almost always on the ice together last season means for the Bruins.

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Michael Felger hates the NBA so much, he can simultaneously trash the Warriors, Steph Curry and LeBron James all at the same time.  THAT’s talent.

Is Shaughnessy actually being ironic?

No, I refuse to believe he’s self-aware enough to be ironic.