Thursday, December 29, 2005


According to the Seattle Times, the Mariners have offered pitcher Gil Meche as well as center-fielder Jeremy Reed for either prospect pitcher Jon Lester, or Jonathan Papelbon. If you ask me, this deal would be unwise for the Red Sox. As badly as we need a center-fielder, this deal would hurt us immensely.

The two biggest young assets we have now are Lester and Papelbon. To give them up for a center-fielder that is basically a prospect, and a below average starting pitcher. Yes, Jeremy Reed has potential, but at the moment he isn't that good of a player. Gil Meche is just not that good and wouldn't have a chance to make the rotation. He was 10-8 in 26 starts last season with a 5.09 ERA.

In the same article, a Red Sox trade rumor with Tampa Bay. The Sox are trying to get short-stop Julio Lugo and outfielder Joey Gathright. Lugo has good potential and could be a leadoff hitter. He hit .295 last season with 39 SBs, and an OBP of .362. He doesn't have much power, though. Joey Gathright is a young outfielder that batted .276 in 76 games for Tampa last season. He is a player with a great deal of potential.

The Tejada drama continues. Peter Gammons reported that the Orioles were seriously considering a deal that would send Ramirez and Clement to Baltimore for the MVP short-stop. I would aboslutely love this deal because Clement is somewhat expendable and Tejada would be a much better leader than Ramirez with similar production and could slot into Manny's spot in the lineup.

However, the Orioles have said "There is absolutely no deal we find acceptable to trade this very special player to another team." The O's also signed outfielder Jeromy Burnitz so any need or desire for Manny has probably diminished.

Kevin Millar has publicly blamed WEEI for the moves the Red Sox have made for the past few seasons which includes his non-signing. Here's an article in the Salem News Online about it.

Millar is simply a moron. To think that a corporation as large as the Red Sox would base huge personnel decisions on sports radio is somewhat ridiculous. However, I am sure that they use WEEI as a way to gauge the fans thoughts and opinions because they always seem to pander to callers when it comes to things like cell phone usage behind home plate.

According to Peter Gammons, Sox slugger David Ortiz as well as former Ace Pedro Martinez and potential future players Miguel Tejada and Julio Lugo have been named as co-defendants in a $35 million civil lawsuit against a calling card company. The players, along with Octavio Dotel, endorsed a calling card company that produced devalued cards. They would claim to provide 70 minutes of calling time to the Dominican Republic, but only provide 10 minutes. Here's the report.


I know, Boston College let up BIG TIME in the 2nd half and let the Broncos of Boise State get back into it. However, they ended the game on a big interception and were the first team to wlak off the blue field as winners against Boise State in 31 games. THAT is an achievement. To go out and win a bowl game that is essentially a road game is an achievement. The Eagles did it last year in North Carolina, and they did it this year in Idaho. The Eagles also extended their bowl winning streak to 7, the highest active streak in the nation. Maybe next year, when it comes to Bowl Selection day, the Eagles will get a bowl game in a warm climate, with an historic name, and in a neutral location.

Unfortunately, the national attention for college sports will be falling on the Alamo Bowl between Michigan and Nebraska, two of the biggest programs in the country. The wild ending to that game couple with the upset of ranked Michigan by unranked Nebraska, coupled with the resurgence of Nebraska's program under Callahan will probably dwarf any recognition Boston College will get tomorrow. Maybe next year BC will get a prime time bowl.

I particularly enjoyed this victory because I don't really like Dan Hawkins (BSU's head coach for the game, now Colorodo's head coach) style of football. This whole "riverboat gambler" "play to win" risky style of his works when you're team is much more talented than the other team. You may screw up and not convert on a 4th and 4, but you'll get another chance soon enough. But against teams on a similar level of talent, like BC, it doesn't work. Maybe that's why Hawkins had a 2-6 record against teams in BCS conferences when he was at Boise State.

The Broncos had an opportunity to kick a field goal when it was 27-0 in the early stages of the 3rd quarter. They elected to go for it on 4th and 4 and were stopped short. Had they kicked a field goal and the game played out the same way, they could have kicked a field goal to tie the game in the 4th quarter instead of desperately tossing the ball into coverage in the end zone. Could you imagine Bill Bellichick being described as "a river-boat gambler?" But he's reached heights that most coaches can only dream about.

Boston College will probably pass #20 Michigan in the final BCS rankings as they lost to Nebraska 32-28. When Virginia Tech beats Louisville, BC should move up again. Every other team will probably stay ahead of BC. They should finish within the top 20 though which is pretty good for some "soft East Coast team."

Wednesday, December 28, 2005


J.T. Snow used to be one of the best first basemen in the NL. Now, he is nowhere near that. But we're going after him because we have no choice! There just aren't very many free agent first basemen this season and the one big one, Paul Konerko, was kept in Chicago by the White Sox.

J.T. Snow will not be on the Giants as San Francisco has already gotten a replacement for him. The Red Sox want him because he is a lefty and can share time with Youkilis at first base. Snow was a great player back in 2000, winning a Gold Glove, hitting 19 HRs and knocking in 96 RBI. But now he is at the end of the line. He hit .275 last season. His OBP was .343. He had 4 HR and 40 RBI. Then again, Millar only had 9 HR and 50 RBI. Snow will probably give us some good pop off the bench when he isn't in and maybe Fenway will be a good place for him to regain some offensive form. But we still have to get him in order for this to happen.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005


At the moment, the Patriots are the #4 seed in the playoffs which mean they would host the #5 seed - the top Wild Card team - in the 1st round. At the moment, that is Jacksonville. If the Patriots don't win, they will be the #4 seed no matter what.

The Pats can move up to be the #3 seed if they win and Cincinatti loses. That would give the Pats and Bengals the same record (11-5) and the Patriots would have better tie-breakers. If the Patriots do get the #3 seed, they'll host the #6 seed - the second Wild Card team - in the first round. At the moment, that is Pittsburgh, but if a lot of things happen, it will be Kansas City.

Jacksonville is probably going to beat the Tennessee Titans which will lock up a #5 seed for them. The only way the Steelers will miss the playoffs is if they lose to the Lions, Kansas City beats Cincinatti, and San Diego loses to a Denver Broncos team that has nothing to play for.

If the Patriots get a #3 seed and win their first round game, they will automatically go to Denver to play the Broncos in the 2nd round. If the Pats wind up as a #4 seed and win in their first round game, they'll play Indianapolis in Indy if the Bengals win their game. If the Bengals lose, the Patriots would go to Denver.

So what do the Patriots want? Obviously, a first round game against Jacksonville seems more inviting than one against Pittsburgh, but we know Pittsburgh a lot better than the Jaguars. But the Steelers are playing pretty well as of late. Then there's the second round. Would you rather play the Colts in Indy or the Broncos in Denver? Neither one is very appealing.

The Patriots are going to win against Miami, most likely. It will be January and the Dolphins are the Dolphins. Cincinatti will probably beat Kansas City, but that game is a lot closer to call. Furthermore, the game is in Kansas City and the Chiefs are playing for life, not for seeding. The Chiefs just might pull off an upset and cause a disturbance to the playoff scenarios. I don't think they will, though. I see us being the #4 seed, hosting the Jaguars (who will have a better record than us). We will win a close game, Pittsburgh will beat Cincinatti. We will then go to Denver and the Steelers to Indy. I'm not going to predict any further than that as I am getting too ridiculous.



23 December 2005 C Whitmer

After suffering through last season’s devastating playoff sweep, Red Sox fans everywhere found themselves uttering that old familiar phrase: “Just wait’ll next year”.

Well Red Sox fans, the wait is over. With spring training only weeks away, the 2006 MLB season is on its way, and the Boston Red Sox have already made some big moves as they get ready to chase down another Championship. And as Red Sox fans everywhere dust off the old cap and mitt and anxiously await the spring thaw, one thing they do not have to wait for is the opportunity to score great tickets to the Red Sox games of their choice. Licensed online ticket brokers are already offering excellent seats for the 2006 regular season, as well as the post season, and (cross your fingers) the World Series.

So it’s time to start anew. Now that the fair-weather fans have jumped off the bandwagon, only the true die-hards remain. And as a die-hard fan nobody needs to tell you just how sweet it will be to avenge that playoff nightmare and knock those “other Sox” back down to the bottom of the league.

Because if we had to wait 86 years to see a World Series winner in Boston, missing a year in between isn’t the worst thing that could happen. The 2005 season was a tough one to take, but the Sox are now poised to pitch, catch, slide, dive and hit their way right back to the Fall Classic. Eager fans everywhere are expecting nothing less, and though the Red Sox fell just short of becoming back-to-back champions last season, winning it all again this year would easily make up for it.

And heck… 2 out of 3 ain’t bad.


Not surprisingly, the Red Sox bungled their negotiations with Kevin Millwood, who signed a 4 year deal with the Rangers. The Red Sox only offered him three years. Even though Larry Luchino bragged about the extra money they have to work with, they didn't seem willing to spend any of it to get Millwood. Boras and Millwood were asking for quite a bit, but what they asked for is about on par for pitching free agents this off-season.

Millwood's record last year was an unimpressive 9-11, but his ERA was an AL best at 2.86. He would have given the Red Sox great depth in the rotation and given us more leeway to trade guys like Clement, Wells, and Arroyo. Instead, the Red Sox didn't propose an offer that would have had a chance of convincing Millwood to come play for Boston as opposed to Texas.


The Patriots won this game in the first half and sealed it with their 9+ minute drive to begin the second half. They made a great deal of mistakes, however. Brady did not show up with his A game. The defense did very well once again and a combined rushing attack allowed the Pats to dominate the game. The Jets sucking helped out a lot, too.

Mike Vrabel stood out as the best player on the field. He caught 2 TDs and sacked Bollinger as one of his 4 solo tackles and 6 overrall. He is the first player since sacks have been recorded as a statistic to record one and catch 2 TDs in the same game. Vrabel now has 6 career regular season TD catches. He has only caught touchdowns.

The Pats had a great combined running attack. 50 carries spread to 6 players. Dillon had 26 for 77 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Faulk had 10 carries for 38 yards. Heath Evans came in for 6 carries and 16 yards. Patrick Pass had 3 for 14 yards. Tom Brady sneaked 3 times for 7 yards. Each sneak was a succesful 1st down run. Doug Flutie carried it twice for -1 yard. 50 carries for 151 yards. Not a great average per carry, but a consistent and relentless ground attack that dominated the time of possession. The Pats had the ball for 24 minutes in the 1st half and 44 in the entire game. At one point, they ran 31 straight plays before the Jets got the ball back.

The defense was stellar. The Front Seven got excellent pressure on Bollinger. They recorded 4 sacks. Few of those Sacks were pure individual pressures. They were well designed and well executed plays. McGinist, Colvin, and Vrabel all had great days once again.

The defense pressured Bollinger and stopped the run as well. The Jets only had 40 rushing yards in the game. The defensive backs were able to cover decently enough and gave the pressuring pass rushers time to get to Bollinger and force some bad throws, including the one Samuel picked off.

There are a few things to be worried about. Brady was not very accurate or all that wise with his decisions. He was good, but not the normal Brady we're used to seeing. The biggest worry from the game is the status of Tedy Bruschi. TB54 went down in the 1st quarter with what appeared to be a problem with an ankle. All that is officially known is that it is a left leg injury and that he will be receiving X-Rays. I wouldn't be shocked if we saw little to no Tedy Bruschi in the Miami game on Sunday.

Monday, December 26, 2005


While the rest of baseball opened presents and ate their Christmas dinners, the Blue Jays and Diamondbacks were working on a deal that brought Troy Glaus to Toronto for Orlando Hudson and Miguel Batista. Glaus had 37 HRs and 97 RBIs and if you ask me, would have looked good in a Red Sox uniform especially if we don't hang on to Manny or if Manny decides he's not going to play that hard.

The Blue Jays have improved themselves quite a bit this off-season. A.J. Burnett, B.J. Ryan, Lyle Overbay, and now Troy Glaus. They're going to be a solid team. We lost the season series to them in 2005 and 2006 won't be any easier. With the Yankees and Blue Jays in our division, we're looking at 38 games against solid teams and that's just within the divison.

Friday, December 23, 2005


There are a great deal of fans in Red Sox Nation who feel "betrayed' by Johnny Damon. They feel like Damon has no loyalty. They feel like their girlfriend has left them for their biggest enemy. Are they right? I suppose so. Damon did say he'd never play for the Yankees. However, we've heard similar promises from Roger Clemens (he said he could never pitch against the Red Sox), and most of Red Sox Nation is clamoring for him now.

On December 20th, 2001, Damon was a hot commodity. The Oakland Athletics offered him a deal. Then the Red Sox swooped down and offered just a few million dollars more. Damon signed with the Red Sox. Now, we're shocked that he did the same thing to us? We didn't call him a traitor back then. He wanted to be where he would get more money and at the time, that was Boston. He's done this before so we shouldn't be surprised.

Yes, I know. He never won a World Series with the A's. But then again, in 2001, the A's were much better than the Red Sox. Oakland won 102 games that season, Boston won 82. Damon has always been a player that has gone where the money is. So we shouldn't be at all taken aback that he continues to do so.

In other news, the Sox got former Yankee Catcher John Flaherty. I'm glad the Red Sox are addressing such a serious need as backup catcher. Especially considering we already have Shoppach. I'm glad we're filling our needs.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


There's been a great deal of buzz surrounding the Johnny Damon incident. Many are speculating that if Theo Epstein were the Red Sox General Manager, we would have been able to sign Damon. I don't think this is necessarily true. However, I do think we would be in a better situation than we are in if Theo were still here.

If the Red Sox were absolutely not willing to pay the same amount of money as the Yankees, then whoever the GM was wouldn't matter. Damon would have signed with them. However, the Red Sox brass have often showed tendencies to enter into bidding wars with the Yankees (See: Jose Contreras). Given John Henry's and Larry Luchino's obsession with the Yankees, they probably would have been willing to enter into a bidding war with New York. They at least would have made an offer to Damon matching the Yankees offer. But this didn't happen.

The Red Sox put an offer on the table in front of Damon and Scott Boras. Then they got up and left. They probably went to go argue with Doug Mienktiewicz about the World Series ball, place a few phone calls to Dan Shaughnessey about the current Sox GMs, and find places in Fenway to stick 50 seats in. Menawhile, Boras and Damon went to the Yankees. The Yankees didn't create any deadlines. They did, however, mention that they were looking at other players as replacements. The Red Sox did no such thing. They completely mishandled their negotiations just as they mishandled their negotiations with Theo. People will complain that the Yankees simply swept in with more money and stole Damon from us. We let them take him though. Neither one of the Sox GMs, nor Larry Luchino contacted Boras or Damon after the offer was put on the table.

One of the things about MLB GMs is that they establish communication networks. They have ways of getting information. In their business, information is power. Theo had a system of collecting information. Other baseball executives have complimented him because he seemed to be trying to be a part of every deal that went down. Theo probably would have known that Boras was talking to the Yankees. If he had not been able to make a deal with Damon in competition with the Yankees, he would have at least been able to sign a replacement like Kenny Lofton.

Now the Red Sox are in a bad, bad situation. Free agent outfielders were few and far between before Tuesday and now they are even fewer. There are trades possible, but every team knows we're in desperate need of a center fielder and a leadoff hitter. This means we'll have to overpay and give up more than we should have to. Theo would not have allowed us to be in this situation.

During his press conference, Larry Luchino bragged about how much money the Red Sox have available to spend. Did anyone bother to ask him what is out there for the Red Sox to spend money on? I see Roger Clemens, who is probably going to retire, as the only thing out there to spend much money on. And if the Red Sox don't spend money and get a short-stop better than Alex Cora, then they will have proven, to me at least, that they're a bunch of greedy misers that wanted to line their own pockets before they put out a winning team.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005


There are rumors flying around that the Red Sox have been and are in discussion with the Seattle Mariners for 24 year-old center fielder Jeremy Reed. Reportedly, the Red Sox have offered Matt Clement. Bronson Arroyo could also be a possibility. I know we've added to our pitching staff and we have Papelbon coming along. However, this Jeremy Reed guy doesn't seem to be that great. I know he's only 24, but he only hit .254 last season in 144 games for the M's. His OBP of .322 isn't very good. He is solid defensively, but so isn't a guy like Gabe Kapler. He also only slugged .352. He stole 12 bases, which isn't a lot for the Mariners. He had a mere 45 RBI and 3 HRs.

There is something rotten in the State of Red Sox Nation. We're starting to suck.


Here is a list of free agents that the Red Sox could have signed, but instead signed with other teams. The list will include only players that play position which we need to have filled. The team is the team that signed or re-signed them.

OF Jacques Jones - Cubs
OF Kenny Lofton - Dodgers
1B Heep Sop-Choi - Dodgers
SP Joe Kennedey - Athletics
SP Jarrod Washburn - Mariners
RP Mike Myers - Yankees
OF Johnny Damon - Yankees
RP Braden Looper - Cardinals
RP Ricardo Rincon - Cardinals
SP Kenny Rogers - Tigers
OF Dave Roberts - Padres
SP Matt Morris - Giants
IF Lou Merloni - Indians (just kidding)
CP Jose Mesa - Rockies
RP Todd Jones - Tigers
SS Rafael Furcal - Dodgers
SP A.J. Burnett - Blue Jays
SP Paul Byrd - Indians
RP Tom Gordon - Phillies
RP Kyle Farnsworth - Yankees
1B Paul Konerko - White Sox
RP Bobby Howry - Cubs
CP Billy Wagner - Mets
SP Estaban Loiaza - Athletics
CP B.J. Ryan - Blue Jays

That is quite a bit of talent that the Red Sox simply missed out on. It wasn't for lack of money, either. They haven't spent a whole lot of it. In fact, they've saved quite a bit by trading Renteria, and now losing Damon will save them a few million dollars. But, they have done next to nothing on the free agent market.

Oh, and by the way. Has anyone noticed that the Yankees coaching staff is nearly as ridiculous as their $115 million lineup? They got Tony Pena to coach first base, Larry Bowa to coach third, Lee Mazilli as bench coach, Ron Guidry as pitching coach, Joe Kerrigan as bullpen coach, and Don Mattingly as hitting coach. This all behind Joe Torre. That's simply ludicrous. They've got 5 guys who have managed MLB teams on their staff.

My friend asked me "What are the Red Sox going to do?" My reply: "lose."


Another question emerged for the Boston Red Sox as Johnny Damon has reportedly signed a 4 year, $52 million deal with the New York Yankees. This leaves the Red Sox without a center fielder, as well as a leadoff hitter that was a big part of the Red Sox offensive machine.

The fact of the matter is, Damon wanted too much money. By the way, I love the bull that spews out of players and agents. Damon has been whining and moaning like a neglected girlfriend. "The Red Sox didn't want me enough. The Yankees proved they wanted me." Also, like some girlfriends but not all, these are codes for "The Yankees spent more money on me."

So the Yankees will have Jorge Posada, Jason Giambi (probably), Robinson Cano Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon, and Gary Sheffield. We have, for certain, Ortiz, Tek, Mark Loretta, Mike Lowell, and Trot Nixon. Anyone else sensing a bit of disparity?

The LA Dodgers have signed another former Red Sox player. Nomar Garciaparra signed a 1 year deal with the struggling team. He joins former teammates Bill Mueller, and Derek Lowe as well as former Manager and fellow loser, Grady Little. Nomar will play first-base. The Dodgers also nabbed a possible Red Sox replacement for Johnny Damon. They picked up Lofton in a 1 year deal for $3.85 million. Don't you think the Red Sox could have at the very least matched that? I know he's old, but he is still productive.

The Red Sox picked up Rudy Seanez for 1 year with a contract reportedly worth $2.1 million. You may remember this guy. He pitched for us in 2003. He went 8.2 innings and allowed 6 earned runs. He wasn't very good for us. However, he's been solid over the past 2 seasons. He made 39 outings in 2004 with both the Royals and Marlins. His ERA for 2004 was a combined 3.33. In 2005, he made 57 appearances and had an ERA of 2.69. He could fit in nicely as a set-up man.

It appears that Keith Foulke will once again be in the closer's role with the Red Sox. This is despite his poor 2005 season which was probably due mostly to injury. The Red Sox really don't have much of an option in this department. At least, they don't now. They did at the outset of the offseason when more talent was available on the free agent market.

Sounds kind of gross, doesn't it? The Red Sox tendered contracts to three arbitration eligible pitchers. Bronson Arroyo, Josh Beckett, and Guillermo Mota. They did not tender contracts to Wade Miller, understandably, and Chad Bradford, not so understandably. Bradford was actually one of our ebst releivers last season with an ERA of 3.86. If the

With the inevitable loss of Wade Miller and Kevin Millar, as well as the loss of Bill Mueller, the Red Sox will go from three Millers (close enough to Millers) to none in one offseason. With the acquisition of Mike Lowell and Josh Beckett, the Red Sox now have 4 players with last names that are also towns in Massachusetts. Lowell, and (Tim) Wakefield are up in the northeast, Becket is a town in western Mass. Jon Lester's last name is close enough to Leicester's pronunciation so it counts. Leicester, by the way, is out near Worcester.

Tony Graffanino accepted salary arbitration and will be back with the Red Sox in 2006. So we have two second basemen, no first baseman, no short-stop, and no centerfielder. But hey, if arbitration works out we just might have the World Series Baseball. And in the end, isn't that all that matters?

All last week, every one of the morons on ESPN, Fox Sports, et cetera, were claiming that there was no way the Colts would lose a game. Lo and behold, the San Diego Chargers accomplished it. Now, it seems as though the Colts are not as pristine as once beleived. Manning looked as shaken as he looks after throwing his 3rd pick against the Pats in his annual playoff collapse. If the Patriots win their first round playoff game, they will go to Indianapolis and play the Colts. They can win. But there is much more football to play between then and now.

Saturday, December 17, 2005


The Patriots are once again contenders. They beat the previously 9-4 NFC South leading Buccaneers. They beat them pretty easily. They beat them 28-0. The Patriots clinched the 2005 AFC East title. It is their 3rd straight divisional title, their fourth in five years, and their 8th of all-time.

The Patriots just looked better in every aspect of the game. They seemed to move faster. They seemed to play with a bit more ferocity. The offense did well, but the defense totally dominated this game. The longest run they Buccs had was a 4 yard carry by Pittman in the 4th quarter. Tampa had 30 total rushing yards.

Their passing game was also held in check, mostly through defensive pressure. The Pats racked up 7 sacks. Bruschi and McGinist each had 2. Artrell Hawkins, Roosevelt Colvin, and Mike Vrabel each had a takedown of the QB. Bruschi also added a forced fumble as did Mike Vrabel. McGinist had a fumble recovery and a nice return after it to set up a score. The Buccs only had 108 yards of passing. They had 138 yards of offense compared to our 336.

Tom Brady had a great game. His Questionable listing worried me, but he did very well. He had a lot of time thanks to the O-line and his receivers did a great job for him. He threw for 258 yards and 3 TDs. He spread the ball to 9 different receivers (4 WRs, 1 TE, 3 RBs, 1 OT). By the way, how screwed up is it that LB Mike Vrabel is now a decoy? GREAT play on the goal-line getting Ashworth the ball.

David Givens had a career high receiving day. He caught 6 passes for 137 yards and a TD. He also had 2 carries for 13 yards.

Everyone else had a solid day. It was really good seeing vrabel play a comfortable outside positio nagain. Colvin has begun to step up and show some of the stuff he showed before he got hurt last season. Bruschi is definately back. McGinist is as good as ever. Seymour, Warren, and Wilfork are all doing their jobs. The defense is really starting to come together.

The Pats have a long week. They play the night after Christmas against the Jets in New Jersey. That should be an easy victory. Then they finish the season on New Years Day against the Phins in Foxborough. Considering the Dolphins history in Foxborough when it is cold, that should be a win. I'm not saying these games are won, I'm only saying they should be.

If the Pats beat the Jets and the Phins, they'll finish 11-5. They're probably going to be the 4th seed. If Denver and Cincinatti screw up, we'll be a 3rd seed. That means a 1st round home game against one of these 4 teams in the Wild Card races: Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, Kansas City, and San Diego. None of those teams really scare me, but none of those teams would be easy games to win. Heck, we lost to KC and San Diego. San Diego even beat us at home. But that wasn't in January. This team looks different though. Maybe it won't last. But if it does, we are definately contenders.


With Manny Ramirez's situation up in the air, and Johnny Damon being the league's biggest flirt, the Red Sox are not surprisingly looking at other outfield options. One of them, is Cleveland's Coco Crisp. The Indians, like the Yankees, Dodgers, Astros, and Braves, are looking at Nomar Garciaparra. They view Nomar as a potential right fielder. The Red Sox appear to be talking about dealing newly acquired prospect Andy Marte along with newly acquired releiver Guillermo Mota for Crisp.

The 26 year old outfielder hit .300 last season with 69 RBI, 16 HR, and an OBP of .345. He also stole 15 bases in 21 attempts. He's a solid player, but he is hardly on the same level as Ramirez or Damon. Furthermore, the Red Sox can save a prospect like Marte for pitching. In fact, I think they should. Especially if we don't have Ramirez or Damon, our run scoring ability will be dramatically lower. This means our pitching needs to be that much better just to be where we were last season. and where we were last season wasn't good enough.

Roger Clemens is said to be considering four teams to play for. The Astros, the Rangers, the Yankees, and the Red Sox. He's also more apt to retire than play. There's also the possibility that he'd play a partial season. time will tell with this situation.

The Red Sox are going to arbitration with Doug Mientkiewicz. Over a f*cking baseball! Seriously, the Red Sox need to focus on making a winning team and forget about an inanimate baseball. It isn't as if Mientkiewicz has been keeping the ball to himself. Maybe the arbitrator will grant joint custody. The Red Sox will be able to visit for a few hours every weekend.

The Patriots can win the AFC East today with a win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Pats can also win the division if the hapless Jets overcome the mediocre Dolphins on Sunday. Here is the Pats injury report for the game:

T Matt Light (Ankle)

T Tom Ashworth (Knee)
QB Tom Brady (Shin)
RB Corey Dillon (Calf)
FB Heath Evans (Shoulder)
RB Kevin Faulk (Foot)
TE Daniel Graham (Shoulder)
CB Artrell Hawkins (Thigh)
WR Bethel Johnson (Pelvis)
T Nick Kaczur (Shoulder)
FB Patrick Pass (Hamstring)
CB Asante Samuel (Infection)
SS Michael Stone (Ankle)
TE Ben Watson (Head)

Thursday, December 15, 2005


Not surprisingly, with Edgar Renteria gone and the Red Sox looking for help at short-stop, the name of Nomar Garciaparra has popped up, after swinging at the first pitch. Already, there are two online petition sites to bring Nomar back. As far as I can tell, there are NO "Bring Back Pedro" sites out there. Boston fans can be really stupid sometimes.

Here are some reasons why Nomar Garciaparra should never ever be on the Boston Red Sox again.

1. He gets injured way too much. Last year, he missed 100 games. In 2004, he missed 81. In 2001 he missed 141. Do we really want a guy like that on our team? He's going to be on the DL at least once in the season and every time he gets hurt, his play gets worse.

2. He isn't exactly the Nomar of the 1990's. Up until the 2001 season, Nomar was one of the best players in baseball. In 2003, he had a very good year with us, but since then injuries have really plagued his play and his stats.

3. He's never been a great defensive player. He's amde 25 errors in a season twice in his career. Edgar Renteria's fielding percentage last year was .954. Nomar's career fielding percentage at SS is .968. That means in 2005 Edgar only made one more error than Nomar does in every 100 chances. (a SS gets about 700 chances a year so the difference between Nomar 1996-2005 and Edgar 2005 is about an error every 23 games, or 7 extra errors a season. That is a somewhat big number, but consider how bad Edgar played defensively. 23 errors in the same # of chances isn't very good either).

4. Can he even play SS anymore? His range, which was one of his best defensive attributes, will be greatly reduced after numerous leg injuries. Last year, he played 43% of his games at third base for the Cubs. We already have several players at 3B, and a full-time DH. So the place to put him would be 1st base. He wouldn't even be able to play SS a full season, I don't think, which means we'd have to spend a lot on a backup which means we'd have to reduce our spending elsewhere.

5. Do we want him back in the clubhouse? Wasn't it made fairly clear in 2004 that he was detrimental to the clubhouse? Didn't the attitude of the team lighten up just a little bit once he was traded? Statistically, one can see a big difference from the team with Nomar and the team without Nomar.

Nomar was traded on July 31. On August 1, 2004, the Red Sox were 56-46 (.549). In their last 60 games, they went 42-18. That is precisely .700 baseball. They upped their winning percentage by over .050 points and finished at 98-64 (.605). That is the most wins in Red Sox regular season history since 1978. The Red Sox didn't stop there, though. They went on to beat the Angels 3-0, then come back and beat the Yankees 4-3, then sweep St. Louis in 4 games. That combined 11-3 (.787) makes the record for the Red Sox in 2004 109-67 (.619), that is tied with the 1912 Red Sox for the most total wins in a season. Without Nomar and including the playoffs, the Red Sox went 53-21 (.716). That is a HUGE difference from the barely over .500 ball that had been played up until that point.

Now, after all that, do you really want to bring back someone whose absence, or at least whose replacement, seemed to help us?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


I understand why New York wants Damon. They need a CFer and a guy at the top of the lineup. However, them going after Nomar is a bit odd to me. Sources are saying Nomar would play first, which makes sense considering his inability to throw the ball with accuracy. Now, if the Yankees get Nomar, I will probably laugh. It will be just far too ridiculous. And you know what, they can have Nomar for all I care. The guy brings nothing but misery and woe wherever he plays.

Another former short-stop related item. Someone with more energy/more time went out and has done the easy math and seen that Edgar Renteria made 14 of his 30 errors on the road. I guess the jungle like conditions of Fenway's brand new infield were responsible for those extra 2. That's not really a lot, is it Edgar? If you're going to lie, make it a good one. We check for this kind of stuff all the time.

Monday, December 12, 2005


The Red Sox are declaring this the end of a period of uncertainty. Ben Cherington and Jed Hoyer have been named as co-consuls, I mean co-General Managers by the team. It is notable how much the Red Sox are trying to connect these two guys to Theo Epstein.

Now, co-GMs can work for a short period. When it is December, for example, and there is time to converse and have dialogue about trades and free agents. However, what will happen in the middle of the season. Theo was renound for his vigor at the trade deadline. Will people know which GM to call late in the afternoon? The Orioles tried a two man GM system and it didn't pan out. Now, was it the system, or was it the men? Maybe these two will know to cower to Larry Luchino's will.

I know, the Red Sox front office has done well this offseason considering it has been essentially devoid of a GM. I remember WEEI's Michael Holley remarked after the Beckett deal "Who needs a GM?" He was serious, too. The thing is, this committee stuff can only work temporarily. No two people will ever make the same decisions all the time. Eventually, there will be disagreements. Then there will be division. Then there will be failure. This MUST be a temporary solution, perhaps for only the 2006 season. It simply will not work longer than that.


The Globe is reporting that the Red Sox are trying to get Theo back into the fold as a consultant or advisor. This has already been insinuated by Peter Gammons of ESPN on sports radio. He, among others, beleives that Theo was consulted on the recent deals that went down.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox are starting to show an interest in Hall of Famer Roger Clemens. I'm glad they've started to do this. I think the chances of landing him are minimal, but he would be a great addition to our staff.

Apparently, Edgar Renteria wanted out of Boston. It wasn't fans pressuring him or a new set of pitchers, or a new city. It was the Fenway infield. Apparently that is why Edgar had 30 errors. If I had the time or the energy, I'd look up to see if he had more home errors than road errors. But I don't at the moment.

In related news, Miguel Tejada has backed down from his trade demand just a bit. Time will tell how that all works out.

Sunday, December 11, 2005


35-7 and it wasn't even that close. Now, all the Pats have to do is win 1 game or have Miami lose a game and they win their 3rd straight AFC East title.

I'm not going to look at this blowout and think that the Patriots are a great team. Let's face facts, the Bills suck. They are terrible. They were still able to exploit our coverage though. Our front defensive 7 was able to shut them down, thankfully. They will be the key to any success we have in the post-season.

Brady had a solid day but made a few mistakes. He threw for 329 yards, and 2 TDs. He also threw 2 picks. However, he did run for 17 yards on 4 carries including a 3 yard TD run. He got shaken up in the 1st quarter though. If he goes down, we might be in bad shape.

Corey Dillon had a great day, which we needed with Evans and Pass on the bench and brady limping. Dillon ran for 102 on 22 carries with a touchdown. He also caught 4 passes for 29 yards.

Kevin Faulk had a good day. He only ran for 14 yards, but he caught 6 passes for 71 yards. His backfield versatility has been missed for most of the season and it was good to see him back to form.

Eight different Patriots caught passes. Four receivers, two running backs and two tight ends. Branch led them with 83 yards while Troy Brown and Christian Fauria each had a TD grab.

Defensively, the Pats were able to rack up 3 interceptions, all of which came because of the front 7. Ellis Hobbs, Asante Samuel, and James Sanders each had one. Sanders took his back for 6.

Roosevelt Colvin has stepped up big time the past few weeks and played well today. He got a sack and contributed to a great deal of pressure on JP Losman. Seymour also made some statistical noise as opposed to the unnoticed noise he makes week in and week out. He too had a sack. Tedy Bruschi had a solid day, tipping the pass that Sanders eventually intercepted. Ty Warren had a good day on the line with 7 tackles.

Solid win by the Patriots today. The Chargers are down 20-17 to the Dolphins. If they can come back, we clinch the AFC East.

If you look to your left, you'll see I have a new sponsor. They seem to have a good variety of tickets to buy. They also have the best phrasing for their ads and I know for a fact that they know they're sports and are Curt Schilling fans.


The United States qualified for the World Cup and will be in Group E. They finished 2nd in their group because they scored 3 fewer goals than Mexico. They will be grouped with Italy, a perennial powerhouse. Italy won Group 5 in the European qualifying rounds. They finished ahead of Norway, Scotland, Belarus, Moldovia, and Slovenia. Italy is not as good as they were a few years ago but being forced to play them so early could harm the US's chances of advancement.

Also in the group is Ghana. Ghana won Group 2 of the African qualifying rounds. Rounding out the group is the Czech Republic. They qualified via the European playoffs. The Czech Republic made it to the semi-finals in 2004's European Championships.

The United States will open up their World Cup on June 12 against the Czech Republic in Kelskirchen, Germany. They'll play Italy on the 17th in Kaiserslautern. Then they'll go to Nuremburg on the 22nd to play Ghana. None of the games will be insanely early in the morning like the 2002 World Cup in Korea/Japan. They will all be mid to late afternoon games.

The top 2 teams will advance. I think the US will finish 2nd behind Italy. I think they will beat the Czech Republic in a close game, dominate Ghana, and draw with Italy or lose. Italy will win the group because they will score more goals against Ghana and the Czech Republic.

If the US advances to the elimination round they will face either the 2nd place team from Group F (Brazil, Croatia, Australia, Japan) which will probably be Croatia, if they win Group E. If they finish in 2nd, they will play the winner of group F which will probably be 2002 Champions Brazil. It is imperative that the US win their group because Brazil is simply the best team in the world. Man, we got a crappy draw. Had we scored 4 more goals in qualifying, we could have gotten Mexico's draw. Mexico is with Iran, Angola, and Portugal. This could be a very short World Cup for Team USA even though they are amongst the top 10 in the World. It is a shame because if we make a good run at it, it would definately boost interest in the sport in the US. Oh well.

Friday, December 09, 2005


After getting Josh Beckett from the Marlins, the Red Sox have resumed sitting on their beleaguered pitching staff, seemingly waiting for lightning to strike twice. While all the fans and all the other bloggers ask "Who will play shortstop?" I ask a much more significant question. Who the heck is going to pitch for us?

We have Josh Beckett, that's one answer. Curt Schilling is still under contract, that's half of an answer because God only knows whether or not he will be able to pitch in any capacity with any amount of effectiveness. He's going to be another year older and still recovering from an injury. What if he shows up to Spring Training out of shape again? Then we have David Wells, who doesn't want to pitch here and is requesting a trade. Then we have Matt Clement, again only half an answer because he is a first half pitcher. Then there's Papelbon. Is he ready to start? Don't we need him in the bullpen as well. We've also got Wakefield who has lost his personal Catcher. Wake should give us a solid season of 30 starts with 15 wins. That's good for the back end of the rotation, but we need more than Beckett on the frontline.

AJ Burnett has gone to Toronto. We hardly made a noise on that free agent. Our most consistent releiver behind Mike Timlin, Mike Myers, has been signed away under our noses by the New York Yankees. How could we let this guy simply go without a fight? It wasn't as if the Yankees overpaid for him either. Two years for $2.4 million. Certainly we could have matched that or gone over that. There goes our situational lefty and BOOM here comes a guy to face David Ortiz for the Yankees. All we had to do was offer him a f*cking contract but we were too f*cking busy playing mind games with Damon, cowering to Manny, and trying to get rid of our average Short-Stop to focus on our desperation for pitching, particularly out of the bullpen.

Another one of the 2004 Champions is gone. Bill Mueller has signed a deal with the LA Dodgers. You think Grady will want to see Mueller's ring or not? We all figured Mueller was gone after this season. The deal that got us Beckett also landed us Mike Lowell. The deal that dumped Renteria got us Andy Marte. We also have Youkilis who has been waiting in the wings for years now.

Here is a quick list of some 2004 World Series Champions that will be playing elsewhere next season:
Theo Epstein
Kevin Millar
Mark Bellhorn
Bill Mueller - LAD
Orlando Cabrera - LAA
Pokey Reese
Nomar Garciaparra
Doug Mirabelli - SD
David McCarty
Doug Mientkiewicz - NYM
Dave Roberts - SD
Cesar Crespo
Brian Daubach
Ricky Gutierrez
Ellis Burks
Andy Dominique
Earl Snyder
Sandy Martinez
Derek Lowe - LAD
Pedro Martinez - NYM
Ramiro Mendoza
Alan Embree
Curt Leskanic
Scott Williamson
Terry Adams
Mark Malaska
BH Kim
Jamie Brown
Jimmie Anderson
Phil Seibel
Bobby Jones
Joe Nelson
Frank Castillo
Mike Myers

Now, not all of these guys we will miss very much, but the core guys: Pedro, Lowe, the entire infield, the General Manager, are all gone. Damon and Ramirez aren't exactly still in Boston either. Who is left (for sure)?

Jason Varitek
Trot Nixon
Tim Wakefield
Bronson Arroyo
Keith Foulke
Curt Schilling
Gabe Kapler
Kevin Youkilis
Mike Timlin
Terry Francona

We're not exactly building dynasties here in Boston. It is becoming more and more apparent that the goal of this organization was to win 1 World Series. They build the 2004 team to do that and now they seem to be trying to build a competetive team every season. A team that will win 90 games, make the playoffs, and fill the seats. Teams with exciting offenses that keep the Sox in the game for 9 innings, but with no pitching so we get swept and dominated by teams such as the White Sox.

The Yankees also went out and signed Kyle Farnsworth while we were playing with Edgar Renteria, Doug Mirabelli, Hanley Ramirez, Manny Ramirez, and Johnny Damon.

And you know what, Johnny Damon needs to shut the hell up. He's whining and moaning about how the Red Sox didn't make an effort to resign him during the season or before it. You know what, Johnny, you claim you took all the risk of injury, but the Red Sox risked about $8 million every season you were here. It's give and take.

Speaking of money, the Red Sox are going to have to foot some of the remaining bill for Edgar Renteria. $11 million of it, in fact. This deal starts looking worse and worse. I know Renteria was a bust, but to only get a 3B prospect and not to be able to dump the entire salary is a shame. Again, we could have just kept Orlando "right when I got to Boston we started winning" Cabrera, but no. We had to improve a position that needed little improvement in an effort to...I don't know. What was the point of that signing again? Now look at us, Nomar Garciaparra has become a serious option for us at SS. What a freaking shame. In fact, Nomar is leading a fan poll at on who should play SS for us next year.

Just a bit about Andy Marte. It looks as though he is at least another year away from Major League Baseball but he could be an option along with Lowell at third base. He only hit .269 last year in AAA Richmond and slugged .530 with an OBP of .369. He could make his debut with us in the 2006 season if he has a good Spring Training. If not, I wouldn't be shocked to see him move up and down a few times eventually landing on the team in a more permanent role in August.

Just a quick question. How come the Yankees are said to be going after Roger Clemens, but we aren't? Couldn't we use a guy like him. He would dramatically improve our rotation. We'd have Clemens, Schilling, Beckett, Wakefield, and Clement. We could then easily trade Wells, move Arroyo to the pen, and keep Papelbon in AAA getting starting experience or keep him in the bullpen where he thrived last season.

According to a few sources, Miguel Tejada is unhappy in Baltimore and would like to be traded. I doubt the O's would be dumb enough to trade him within the division considering how stellar a player he is but just imagine him on the Red Sox. Maybe we could ship Manny down I-95 to Baltimore for Miggy. Tejada, by the way, is one of the ebst players in the game. Since the 2000 season, he has had 98 RBI or more, averaging 118 per season over that stretch. He has also hit 26 HRs or more since 2000, averaging 30. His batting average since 2000 is .291. He's been in the MVP voting for the past 6 years including a 2002 triumph. He has played 162 games each of the last 5 years, and he's a leader. And guess how much $$$ he makes. About the same as Edgar Renteria! IT'S PERFECT! Barring a major blockbuster like sending Manny down there along with some $ and a lesser player, we're not going to see Miguel Tejada playing Short Stop for us. A man can dream, though. A man can dream.

Here's a summary of the Red Sox Rule 5 Draft These guys rarely pan out but once and awhile they do. They can occasionally be solid fill-in players for a team like the Red Sox but the draft helps the smaller clubs out a lot more than the bigger clubs like us.

The Red Sox remain up in the air. Here is what we're pretty sure of:

C - Jason Varitek
1B -
2B - Mark Loretta
3B -
SS -
LF -
CF -
RF - Trot Nixon
DH - David Ortiz

SP - Josh Beckett
SP - Curt Schilling
SP -
SP -
SP -

Closer -
RP - Mike Timline
RP -
RP -
RP -
RP -

Manager: Terry Francona

That's it for now. How bout some pitching, Red Sox?

Thursday, December 08, 2005


Edgar renteria has been traded to the Atlanta Braves for 3B prospect Andy Marte according to sources including Peter Gammons of ESPN.

This was a salary dump, pure and simple. Do you think the Red Sox are actively seeking third base prospects? No! We have Mike Lowell, we offered arbitration to Bill Mueller, and if that's not enough, Kevin Youkilis is on the verge of being a Major League player. We were, however, seeking to get rid of Renteria's contract.

It would have been great if we had been capable of doing this deal earlier which would have freed us to enter into the AJ Burnett sweepstakes with more ammunition.

What will the Red Sox do with this extra money lying around? Pay Johnny Damon? Get some pitching? Build 200 luxury seats that cost $1,000 each?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005


Word on the street is that the Red Sox have traded backup catcher Doug Mirabelli for mediocre second baseman Mark Loretta. Doug has been the best backup catcher in baseball, in my books, for the past two seasons and was most adept at catching for Tim Wakefield. Loretta strikes me somewhat as a Bill Mueller type player. His career average is .301 but he doesn't hit for much power with only 63 career homeruns in 9 full MLB seasons. He, like Mueller, is also a career National Leaguer.

The one thing Loretta has going for him apart from his batting average is his defensive versatility. He has played over 160 games at each of the four infield positions. He's also made an appearance in left-field, DHed a few times in Interleague games, and pitched an inning (no runs, 1 hit, 1 walk, 2 Ks). As far as second basemen go, he is a decent hitter. He's no Alfonso Soriano, but he should be able to replace Bill Mueller in the lineup.

It is sad to see Mirabelli go. He was a great hitter, and a great catcher for Tim Wakefield. He was an integral part of the 2004 World Series team and despite his numbers, he knew the value of winning was more important than playing time.

Reportedly, the Red Sox are also close to a deal to trade Manny Ramirez. Moreover, Edgar Renteria is being talked about as part of possible deals.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox have seemingly decided to rest on their laurels in the Josh Beckett deal. AJ Burnett was out there, and now he is not. The Blue Jays have signed him for $55 million over 5 years. I think he would have been worth it and would have DRAMATICALLY improved our rotation.

On a funnier note, Grady Little has been hired to manage the LA Dodgers. The Dodgers downward spiral shall now continue indefinately.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005


Boston College finished its first season in the ACC with an 8-3 record, 5-3 within the ACC, and a tied first place finish for the Atlantic Division with Florida State. Then game Selection Sunday, when the 28 college football Bowls select who is going to play for them.

As an ACC team, these were the non BCS Bowls the Eagles could have been selected for:

Champs Sports Bowl - Orlando, FA - vs. a Big XII team
MPC Computers Bowl - Boise, ID - vs. a WAC team
Emerald Bowl - San Francisco, CA - vs. a Mountain West team
Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl - Nashville, TN - vs. a Big Ten team
Chick fil-a Peach Bowl - Atlanta, GA - vs. an SEC team
Meineke Car Care Bowl - Charlotte, NC - vs. a Big East team

The Miami Hurricanes, understandably, got the Peach Bowl against LSU. Then the NC State Wolfpack, which BC defeated 30-10, got selected for the Meineke Bowl. Then the Champs Sports Bowl picked Clemson, which BC beat 16-13 in South Carolina. Boston College was then picked to play Boise State on Boise State's field in the winter wonderland of Idaho in the MPC Computers Bowl. The game will receive little national attention, and the Eagles have very little chance of winning. Boise State has won 31 straight on the blue turf and 45 of 46 since 1999.

The Eagles had this coming, in a way. They've never been a team that travelled very well in terms of fan support. And they certainly could have beaten North Carolina which would have given them the Atlantic Division title, a chance, albeit a slim one, at a BCS Bowl, and no way in hell could any bowl turn them down had they made it to the ACC Championship game.

If BC can win this game, it will be a big story. They'll get some attention on a national scene and some respect from the ACC, and college football.

BC deserves some recognition and praise for another thing they have already accomplished. This year, 41% of Bowl bound teams failed to meet academic standards outlined by the NCAA, including #1 USC and #2 Texas. Only Northwestern had a higher graduation rate than Boston College for players in Division I-A. Only Navy and Rutgers had a higher Academic Progress Rating. Considering how mediocre those teams are, and how consistently good BC is, it is made an even more impressive achievement.

Monday, December 05, 2005


Two quarters of mediocrity, a bust of great play, then solid ball possesion resulted in a nice win for the Patriots over the hapless New York Jets. 16-3.

Brady had a solid rebound game after his 4 INT performance in Kansas City last week. He is now 5-0 after games in which he threw 4 picks. He went 27/37 for 271 yards.

Dillon, Faulk, Cloud, and Brady combined for a nice rushing performance. Dillon ran for 65, Faulk for 35, Cloud for 27. and Brady for 19. Combined, they got 146 yards on the ground.

Defensively, the Pats looked good. Green and Colvin each had a sack. Ellis Hobbs had a nice game sealing interception. The Pats got pressure on Bollinger all game preventing him from making good throws.

It was a game that the Patriots should have won and did. Having Dillon, Faulk, and Cloud helped run out the clock a great deal. Although Brady didn't throw any TDs, he didn't make any mistakes and drove the ball down the field well enough to win.

Adam Vinatieri recorded his 1,134th point in the 2nd quarter which gave him more than Patriot legend and announcer Gino Capaletti as the all-time leading scorer in Patriots history.

Friday, December 02, 2005


Why is this whole thing a story? Why are the Red Sox paying ANY attention to an inanimate object? I guess everything is A-OK on Yawkey Way and the Sox brass are simply bored. It isn't as if we have a free agent center fielder demanding more money than he's worth. It isn't as if we have a power hitting left fielder demanding a trade. It isn't as if we still have a lackluster pitching staff. It isn't as if we don't have a GM.

I guess this is the type of stuff that's important to the Red Sox orgnization. The Sox are actually going to court in an effort to bring the game winning World Series ball back to Boston. I wish this was a joke story. It really shows what the Red Sox organization is all about: pathetic symbolic displays. If they spent half as much time as they do on this baseball and on making up nicknames for the Yankees, we might actually have a General Manager.

t's a friggin' baseball people! It is no different from any other. The '04 World Series was such a joke anyway that the first baseball used in it, in my opinion, was the game winning ball. And let's look at things from Mientkiewciz's side. Do you think anything as great as that moment has happened to him on the field? The only thing that comes close is when he won the Gold Medal in the Olympics. Do you think anything as special as ending the 2004 World Seriesl will ever happen to him on the baseball field? I know I don't.

So let's move on and focus on baseball, not a baseball.

Thursday, December 01, 2005


Wednesday night, the Bruins traded Captain Joe Thornton to the San Jose Sharks for defenseman Brad Stuart, German left winger Marco Sturm and center Wayne Primeau.

The Bruins needed to shake things up and this was a major shake up. Yes, Joe is one of the most talented forwards in the NHL, but it just wasn't working. At least not this season. I think having three solid players instead of one great player might help us win more hockey games.

The Bruins season was over if they didn't do something. I think this deal is a better idea than firing the coach. The first game after a deal like this or a coach being fired is often not an indicator as to how good the deal is. Rather, it is an indicator as to how good the shakeup was. Will it last? I don't know. But the Bruins beat the Ottawa Senators, the best team in the league, 3-0 tonight.

I'm sorry I haven't been able to post much. I just got back from a trip to London and a short stop in Frankfurt. This coupled with massive schoolwork has resulted in a lack of posting. I haven't even had an opportunity to watch the Pats game I taped from Sunday. Or maybe I just don't want to watch it.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


Doug Flutie and the BC Eagles beat Miami in the Orange Bowl with a 48 yard walk-off Hail Mary Touchdown. Also, I was born. Time to go to the liquor store.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


The Red Sox have reportedly sent prospects Hanley Ramirez, Anibel Sanchez, and Jesus Delgado for 25 year old righty Josh Beckett and veteran third baseman Mike Lowell.

Beckett went 15-8 last year with 2 CGs, 1 shutout, 178.2 IP, 166 Ks, and a 3.38 ERA. He is 41-34 in his career. He is a young pitcher that has potential to be something special. If he cana djust to the AL and Fenway Park he could be a potential 20 game winner down the line. Beckett is perhaps best known for his 2003 World Series MVP. In Game 6, he pitched a shutout in Yankee Stadium to clinch the Series.

Mike Lowell is essentially a salary dump for the Marlins. He is going to get paid $18M over the next 2 years. However, in years past he has hit well. Before last season, he had 5 seasons of 85 RBI or more. In Fenway Park, he could benefit greatly. He could be a .280-25-90 type of guy which is pretty good production. Furthermore, he won the Gold Glove at third base last year.

The Red Sox will be giving up some nice prospects. All we'v heard about for the past few years is how amazing Hanley Ramirez is going to be. Hanley struggled in AA Portland last season but his athleticism is very impressive. He still would have had at least one season in AAA.

Anibel Sanchez is another AA prospect who probably would have started 2006 in Portland. He still has a great deal of potential. He's only 21 years old. He went 6-1 for A Wilmington but went 3-5 for AA Portland.

Jesus Delgado is a 21 year old A prospect. He had Tommy John surgery a few years ago and has stuck around the A level. He had a decent season with Greanville last year going 7-3 with a 3.50 ERA.

I think this is a good trade for the Red Sox. It is still pending physicals, but it will probably be announced soon. The Sox needed some youth in their rotation. Lowell provides a short term solution for third base. Lowell also means that Youkilis will probably see time at first-base unless the Sox make another deal or signing for a first baseman.

Sunday, November 20, 2005


This morning, before the New England Patriots took on the New Orleans Saints, it was made known that Steve Belichick, father to Pats head coach Bill Belichick and former Coach at Navy, died of heart failure last night at the age of 86. Reports say he died while watching a college football game. Fitting way for The Coach to go.

The Patriots were able to win a game for Bill and for his father 24-17 over the Saints.

New Orleans began the game with a nice drive that sputtered around midfield. They punted and were able to pin the Patriots deep within their own territory.

The Pats started with the ball on their 2 yard line. Pass, back form injury, ran up the middle for 3 yards, getting the Patroits outside the shadow of their own goal posts. Pass ran to the right for 4 more yards, setting up a 3rd and 3. Brady hit Branch for 6 yards. McKenzie hit Branch hard, but Branch got up and had enough yardage for the 1st down.

Brady missed Pass on 1st and 10 at the 15, then Pass ran for 5 yards to the right. The Patriots were featuring a good deal of running which would set up a good deal of play action passing later in the game. Brandon Gorin was penalized for a false start. On 3rd and 10, Brady hit Watson on a beautiful seem route for 29 yards and a 1st down.

Pass ran to the left for 5 yards up the the 49. Brady hit Branch for 11 more. After an incomplete to Andre davis, and a Pass run up the gut for a yard, Brady hit Pass in the middle for 7 yards. On 4th and 2, Watson caught a pass for 4 yards and a 1st down at the New Orleans 28.

Brady hit Watson again for 5 more yards. Pass ran for 3 yards off the right guard. On the 2 yard line, Vrabel checked in at tight end, and Klecko at fullback with Heath Evans as tailback. Brady threw a bit too late and missed Fauria in the end zone. However, Brady was able to hit a wide open Deion Branch off a play action that induced the entire Saint secondary into jumping forward, leaving Branch all by himself in the back of the end zone. 7-0 Patriots.

The Pats defense took the field and made a nice stand. The Saints moved the ball 3 yards on the ground on 1st down and that was it. Antawan Smith was stuffed by MCGinist and Colvin at the line of scrimmage. Brooks then threw an incomplete pass intended for Horn. Mitch Berger's punt was shanked and went only 25 yards. The Pats got the ball back on the New Orleans 48.

Brady began the 2nd drive for the Pats with a 6 yard pass over the middle to Heath Evans. Heath is slowly becoming one of my favorite players. Evans ran around the right for 11 yards to the 31. The 1st quarter ended and the teams switched sides. To begin the 2nd quarter, Brady threw a screen to Pass who took it 29 yards to the 2 before being taken down.

The screen was perfectly designed and executed. The offensive lineman delayed but eventually allowed the Saints defensive rushers to get by. Brady dropped back a little over 10 yards. Pass escaped to the left side of the field. Only three men were on that side. Pass, and two offensive linemen. They blocked and Pass cut back towards the middle of the field. He nearly got into the end zone.

Evans got a handoff and run up the gut for a yard. On 2nd and goal from the 1, Brady hit Vrabel off a play action pass in the end zone. He was wide open. It was Vrabel's 6th career TD reception. 14-0 Patriots.

I remarked to my friend Charlie, part of me thinks we're going to pull away and win in a blowout, but I know we're going to get too comfortable, screw up, and it'll be close. I hate being right, but it all worked out.

The Saints were held to a 3 and out. Thanks to a 23 yard punt return by Tim Dwight, the Pats had excellent field position. From the New Orleans 42, Evans ran for 5 yards. Then he ran for 2. On 3rd and 3, Brady hit Ben Watson for 10 yards for a 1st down at the New Orleans 25. Evans was stuffed at the line. Kaczur was completely beaten by Will Smith on the left side of the line, allowing Smith to come around and sack Brady from the blind side. Smith knocked the ball out of brady's hands. The Saints recovered after a scrum on the ground between offensive and defensive linemen.

The Saints weren't able to score, but they moved the ball from their 33 to our 27. They took away a good deal of momentum. The Pats were probably going to get at least 3 and then the Saints stopped that. The Pats would get the ball back after a big 4th down stop. However, we were only able to move the ball 2 yards forward. Miller had a nice 54 yard punt.

The Patriots defense looked very susceptible on the next New Orleans drive. On 3rd and 11 from the 27, Brooks was able to hit Hakim for 32 yards. After a few penalties, the Saints were able to get 23 yards on 3rd and 20. A pass from Brooks to Stecker made it 1st and goal. Brooks hit Stallworth in the end zone. 14-7 Patriots.

The Pats got the ball with 1:12 on the clock. They didn't do much with it. Evans surprised the Saints and ran for 20 on 1st down. Brady then hit Evans for 15 yards. On 1st and 10, Brady overthrew Tim Dwight, who had beaten the coverage. On 2nd and 10, Brady underthrew Andre Davis, who had beaten McKenzie. On 3rd and 10 with 0:31 on the clock, Brady was sacked for a loss of 12. Miller's punt for a touchback ended the first half.

The Patriots didn't look too good in the later part of the 1st half, nor would they look good to begin the 3rd. The Pats were able to get 1 first down on their initial drive of the half, but a sack on 3rd and 8 ended it abruptly.

The Pats made a big play on the Saints first drive of the 2nd half. New Orleans moved the ball to the Patriot 43 yard line. On 3rd and 1, Wilfork and Seymour stacked up Aaron Stecker at the line of scrimmage for no gain. The play stopped the Saints drive and forced them to punt.

The Patriots offense seemed to feed off the big defensive stop. After a 2 yard run by Evans and an incomplete pass, Patrick Pass ran around the left end for 31 yards. On 1st and 10 from the Patriots 40, Brady threw downfield to Andre Davis. This time he was more accurate. Davis caught the ball in stride for a 60 yard touchdown. 21-7 Pats.

The Saints had a long drive that appeared would give them some points. They drove all the way down to the 7 yard line. On 3rd and 6 from the 7, Brooks threw incomplete to Horn. After a delay of game penalty, Carney missed a 30 yard field goal.

With 13:16 on the clock in the 4th quarter and a 2 touchdown lead, the game seemed relatively in hand. The Saints were having trouble finishing their drives, our defense was making the big plays, and we were able to run well and pass well.

On 1st and 10 from our 20, Evans got a handoff and ran to the left for 6. He then ran to the right for 8 and a 1st down. Having a guy like Evans is nice when wanting to run the clock down and run the defense down. On 1st and 10 from the 34, Brady hit Branch for 9 yards. McKenzie forced Branch out of bounds but out of frustration he continued the tackle on the Patriots sideline after the whistle. Tempers were starting to flare up.

On 1st and 10 from the New Orleans 42, Evans was stuffed for no gain. After an encorachment penalty, Evans ran 4 yards. On 3rd and 1, Brady sneaked up the middle for 5 yards. On 1st and 10 at the 28, Evans was stuffed. Will Smith was penalized three times on the play, all three of which were personal fouls. He kneed Christian Fauria after the whistle, threw his helmet, and had an undisclosed unsportsmanlike conduct. For some unkown reason, he wasn't ejected.

Only one of the penalties could be enforced so it was 1st and 10 on the 14 yard line. Evans was stuffed for no gain. Brady misthrew intended for Dwight. Pass was blown up in the middle for a loss of 5. Vinatieri kicked a 37 yard field goal. 24-7 Pats.

The Patriots defense seemed to get worse and worse as the game wore on. I think that the Saints were learning how to exploit our defensive backs better and better. Our DBs have a good number of weaknesses that can't be hidden for long.

The Saints were able to score their first TD of the game thanks to a series of mid-range passing. The score was set up by Stecker who had a 46 yard kick return that gave the Saints the ball on the New england 48. The Saints took advantage of the short field. Brooks hit Stallworth for a TD. 24-14 Pats.

For some reason, the Pats went away from the run and went to the deep pass. I know that Evans was getting stopped at the line of scrimmage a few times, but running the ball takes patience. It pays off in the end. There was 5:00 left in the 4th quarter when the Pats got the ball back.

First play: deep pass incomplete to Davis. (:06 taken off the clock)
Second play: Evans runs 11 yards. (:42 taken off)
Third play: deep pass incomplete to Davis. (:07 taken off)
Timeout NE
Fourth play: Pass runs 5 yards. (:06 taken off clock, Saints use timeout)

Pass fumbled the ball after this, but it was reversed. The Pats punted. New Orleans got the ball back with 3:38 left on the clock and 2 timeouts. Had we run on the 1st and 2nd plays, we could have taken off about 1:30 of clock while at the same time protecting the ball, wearing out the defense, resting our defense, and maybe pick up a few first downs.

The Saints moved the ball with ease against our defense. Then they got stopped at our 28 yard line. The Patriots were getting to Aaron Brooks, especially Willi McGinist. By the end of the day, Brooks had a 55 tattooed on his jersey. Carney hit a 46 yard field goal. 24-17 Pats.

The Pats got the ball back with 2:14 on the clock. Evans ran to the right for 2 yards. A Gorin holding penalty brought it back. On 1st and 20 from the 18, Evans ran up the middle for a yard. Just after the 2 minute warning, Brady once again missed Davis on a long pass. Patrick Pass ran on 3rd and 19 forcing New Orleans to burn a timeout.

The Saints got the ball back with 1 timeout and 1:36 on the clock. On 1st and 10 from the 22, Brooks hit Horn for 23 yards to the 45. Brooks then hit Hilton for 9 yards into New England territory. On 2nd and 1 from the NE 46, Brooks hit stecker for 4 and a 1st down. They called their last timeout with 0:34 on the clock. On 1st and 10 from the 42, Brooks was pressured but found a lane and ran for 20 yards. From the 22, Brooks stopped the clock with a spike. With 0:15 on the clock, Brooks threw to Stallworth in the corner of the end zone. "The Presence" Eugene Wilson intercepted it as time expired for a "walk off interception."

The score was closer than the game really was. Had the play calling been better, or the execution better at the end of the game, this contest would have been decided by at least 3 TDs.

Tom Brady had a good beginning but didn't really have it near the end. Overrall his numbers weren't bad. His completion percentage (15/29) was skewed by the number of deep passes the Pats were attempting. His execution on those plays was not as good as it could have been. Then again, how many times has he thrown to Andre Davis in his career? It makes sense that there would be an apparent level of uncomfortness.

Heath Evans had another solid day. He rushed for 74 yards on 16 carries. That's an average of 4.6 YPC which is dam good for a 260 pound fullback. He also caught 2 passes for 21 yards.

Patrick Pass had a decent day. He rushed for53 yards and had 36 yards receiving on 2 catches. Overrall the Patriots rushed for 132 yards which was huge as it established play action, screwed with the linebackers, and ate up a good amount of clock.

Ben Watson had a nice day receiving. He caught 4 passes for 66 yards. Andre davis only caught one pass but it was for 60 yards and a touchdown. Branch had 5 receptions for 38 yards and a touchdown. All of his catches seemed to come at key times. Mike Vrabel only had one catch for one yard, but it was a big yard. Vrabel also had 11 tackles on defense.

Wilfork and Seymour did a good job in the trenches. Warren wasn't heard from but didn't seem to hve a bad game. Bruschi looked good, as did Vrabel in the unfamiliar ILB spot. Colvin had a good day stopping the run from the outside and got in on alot of pressure of Brooks. Willie McGinist seemed to be involved in every defensive play. Apart from Wilson the defensive secondary was terrible and easily exploited by the Saints.

The Dolphins, Jets, and Bills all suffered losses. The 6-4 Patriots now have a 2 game lead in the division with 6 games left on the schedule, 4 left within the division. The AFC East is ours to lose.

Saturday, November 19, 2005


Boston College/Maryland isn't exactly a rivalry, but there are alot of intense games all over the country.

#23 Boston College beat Maryland 31-16. The game was kept close by Boston College miscues but the Eagles eventually took off and left the Terps behind. This was the last regular season game for Boston College.

The Eagles finished their first season in the ACC with a 5-3 record. Two of their three losses came to division leaders within the ACC. Two of their three losses were on the road. The Eagles finished in a tie with the FSU Seminoles for the Atlantic Divison title, but their 28-17 loss to them earlier in the season cost BC a bid for the ACC Championship Game. BC might get a bid to the Chik-fil-a Peach Bowl in Atlanta.

Harvard beat Yale 30-24 in triple overtime in the 122nd playing of The Game.

Also in D-IAA, #1 New Hampshire beat Maine 59-47.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


Dayton Moore has reportedly taken himself out of the running to be the next Red Sox GM. Moore was head of palyer development for the Atlanta Braves and was considered to be the front runner for the vacant spot in the Red Sox organization when he was asked back to Boston for a second interview.

The million dollar question, or rather the $125 million question is, why did he pull himself out? Was it fear of the pressure of Boston's media and their unholy alliance with The Grinch Larry Luchino? It was far too early in the negotiations for there to be a contract dispute. Was he afraid that if he didn't do well, he'd be fired within 2 years and have an abrupt end to a career as a General Manager. Was he afraid that if he did a good job, he would be gone in 3 years unless he bowed down before Master Larry? Perhaps it was a combination of both. As was feared, the Boston Red Sox have created a no-win situation for any prospective GM, particularly a young one, to come to Boston.

The Yankees are reportedly finished talking with Johnny Damon. Apparently, Damon's requests for a contract were too high even for New York. The numbers being written about are $84 million over 7 years. Ladies and gentlemen, if this is true, then Johnny Damon and Scott Boras need to seek psychological counseling NOW! $12M a year for 7 years?!? If he thinks that anyone will pay him that much for that long, he must be insane. I know he's endured alot of run ins with the wall at Fenway Park, but that is still no excuse for such an unreasonable demand. Damon would be 39 in the last year of this contract. Good luck, Johnny. Maybe you'll get a spot on a Mexican League team for 84 million pesos.

Defensive back Randall Gay and Center Dan Koppen are both out for the remainder of the season. They were both placed on Injured Reserve today. Koppen suffered a disloacted shoulder. Gay reaggravated an ankle injury, apparently. Koppen is the 3rd defensive lineman who will miss a start due to injury. Gay is the 6th defensive back to go on injured reserve.

The news out of Foxborough isn't all that bad. Patrick Pass practiced with no signs of serious pain. Kevin Faulk and Matt Light have been listed as "doubtful" on the mid-week injury report. Here is the full injury report:

Offensive tackle Matt Light (ankle) -- doubtful
Running back Kevin Faulk (foot) -- doubtful
Offensive tackle Tom Ashworth (knee) -- questionable
Linebacker Monty Beisel (back) -- questionable
Receiver Troy Brown (foot) -- questionable
Running back Corey Dillon (calf) -- questionable
Receiver Tim Dwight (rib) -- questionable
Receiver David Givens (knee) – questionable
Tight end Daniel Graham (shoulder) -- questionable
Defensive lineman Jarvis Green (shoulder) -- questionable
Fullback Patrick Pass (hamstring) -- questionable
Safety James Sanders (ankle) -- questionable
Quarterback Tom Brady (right shoulder) -- probable

The 5-4 AFC East leading Patriots host the 2-7 Saints on Sunday to begin the relatively easy part of the schedule. The Saints aren't pushovers, though. They have been playing with a good deal of pride this season despite their record, and the Patriots have had trouble winning each of their 5 victories.

Monday, November 14, 2005


Alex Rodriguez won his 2nd career MVP today, edging David Ortiz by the slimmest of margins. A-Rod got 16 first place votes, Ortiz got 11. A-Rod amassed 331 points from the voting, Ortiz had 307. Somehow, Vladimir Guerrero got a 1st place vote.

A-Rod had better numbers than Ortiz, but Ortiz's presence on the team was much more VALUABLE than A-Rod's. In "close and late" situations, Ortiz was 27 for 78, A-Rod was 22 for 75. (Ortiz: .346, A-Rod: .293) Ortiz had 11 HRs compared to A-Rod's 4. Ortiz had 33 RBI compared to A-Rod's 12. Ortiz also led the league in game winning RBI, and RBI that put the team ahead. In August, Ortiz hit 11 HRs and knocked in 30 RBI. He did the same in September.

Ortiz lost because he doesn't play the field. Anyone who has watched baseball the past few years knows that team defense is great, but it is offense and pitching that wins ball games, not Gold Glove defense. Furthermore, Ortiz would play first base if it weren't for players like Millar and Olerud who are already on the roster. Ortiz plays a capable first-base in interleague games and it does not affect the team's hitting.

I think this MVP race should have a runoff vote or the voting procedures should be changed. A-Rod's A-trocious playoff series against Anaheim didn't count against him because the voting ocurred before the playoffs. Ortiz had a solid series but fell victim to having no men on base in front of him.

Here's a suggestion. Because the playoffs are the most valuable part of the baseball season, they should matter when considering a most valuable player. Perhaps the MVP voters should determine 5 regular season candidates for the MVP before the playoffs. Then after the playoffs, vote for an MVP. If this had happened, the TRUE most valuable player would have gotten an award today, not A-pathetic, A-hole.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


Huge win by the Patriots this afternoon in Miami. They didn't have Dillon except for 1 play, their defensive injuries are well documented, Tom Ashworth was out, Dan Kopen missed some time, Daniel Graham didn't play, David Givens didn't play, and quite a few of the men in blue left the field with injuries but most came back.

By the way, Tom Brady is the man. The INT in the 4th quarter was his fault, but he more than made up for that.

The Patriots started the game off with what else? A penalty. Bethel Johnson's long kickoff return was brought back by a holding penalty. The Pats drove nicely. Brady hit Johnson for 6, then Heath Evans ran for 21 up the middle. Brady threw to Troy Brown for 16 more yards. Evans was stuffed for a gain of 1. He then ran to the right for 8. The drive was stopped on 3rd and 1 when Mike Cloud got the handoff and lost a yard. Miller had the first of several great punts, pinning the Dolphins at their 3 yard line.

The Dolphins didn't look too good on their first drive. Brown ran to the right for 2. Frerotte threw incomplete to Chambers down the field. Eugene Wilson could have had an interception but he was interfered with by Chambers. The penalty wasn't called, though. On a broken play, the Dolphins were able to convert a 1st down. They weren't able to get another one, though, and were forced to punt.

The Pats won the special teams battle all day long. They started off with the ball at their 18. The Pats allowed a sack to begin the drive but didn't lose any yardage on the play. Cloud ran around the tackle for 7. Christian Fauria caught his first pass of the season for a gain of 5 to the 30 yard line. Cloud ran for 2. Brady threw and incomplete and was then sacked. There could have easily been a late hit penalty called on Kevin Carter, but it wasn't. Logan Mankins was called for holding and it was declined. Miller punted the ball 54 yards down to the Miami 15. Wes Walker muffed it but recovered at the 10.

The Dolphins looked a little bit better on their 2nd drive. Frerotte passed to Brown for 4 yards. Brown then ran for 3 yards. Booker caught a pass for 9 yards on 3rd and 3. Ricky Williams got his first touch and lost a yard. Frerotte threw incomplete to Chambers twice in a row. On 4th down, the Dolphins punted.

The Pats started on their 12 yard line and weren't able to do much with the ball. Evans had a 4 and a 14 yard run. Brady missed Branch, Cloud lost 3, and then Branch was called for a false start. Tom Ashworth's replacement, Brandon Gorin, was called for another false start. On 3rd and 23 from his 17, Brady hit Branch for 16 yards. Miller had a 48 yard punt.

The Dolphins 3rd drive was even better than their 2nd. Williams ran for 2, McMichael had a 7 yard gain. The Phins then went to a no huddle. Williams ran up the middle for 5 then 2. Frerotte hit Chambers for 12 yards, entering New England territory. Booker then had a 12 yard catch. Williams lost a yard. Frerotte threw an incomplete to Barnes then one to Welker. Olindo Mare tried a 31 yard field goal but missed to the right.

The Pats went 3 and out. Miller kicked a 51 yard punt. The Dolphins were able to move the ball on the exhausted and depleted defense. Booker had a 24 yard reception, Brown ran for 13, Williams for 1. Frerotte hit McMichael for 8, Brown ran for 2, then 2, then 16. On 1st and goal from the 3 yard line, Frerotte hit Chambers for a TD. Chambers might have pushed off but it wasn't called. 7-0 Miami.

The Patriots responded with a 3 and out on offense. They needed a big defensive play BADLY. They got one. On 1st and 10, Frerotte threw to McMichael who got the ball down to our 9 yard line. Roosevelt Colvin forced a fumble. Ellis Hobbs picked it up and ran it to the 15 yard line.

The Patriots haven't been that good this season when it comes to scoring with less than 2:00 on the clock. This time they were able to do something. Heath Evans started the drive with a surprise run for 14 yards. After an incomplete, Evans ran for 3 more. Brady threw to Troy Brown for 15 yards. Fauria caught his 2nd pass of the day for 18 yards. Jason Taylor was called for offside. On 1st and 5 from the Miami 30, Brady missed Brown then hit Branch for 13 yards. With 0:07 on the clock, Vinatieri hit a 35 yarder. 7-3 Miami.

The Dolphins started the 2nd half with a 3 and out. The defense played much better in the 2nd half. Brady threw an interception on the first Patriot drive of the 2nd half. The Dolphins moved the ball into New England territory but were stopped. The Patriots had a big play to start the enxt drive but they stalled near midfield. The Dolphins then went 3 and out.

The back-and-forth between the teams finally ended halfway through the 3rd quarter. Brady threw incomplete to Andre Davis but a pass itnerference call resulted in a 1st and 10 on the Miami 17. Johnson caught a 4 yard pass. Evans was stuffed at the line, and Brady threw incomplete to Brown. Vinatieri kicked a 32 yard field goal. 7-6 Miami.

The Pats got the ball with 5:01 left in the 3rd. Thanks to a poor Miami punt, the Pats started on their 47 yard line. Brady hit Tim Dwight for 3 yards. Evans ran to the right for 3 more. On 3rd and 4, Brady hit Brown for 5 yards and a 1st down. Evans caught a 2 yard pass, then a 5 yarder. On 3rd and 3, Evans ran for 3 yards and a 1st down. Brady missed Branch on 1st and 10 on the Miami 32. He then found Branch for 17. Cloud was stuffed for a loss of 1. On 2nd and 11 from the 16, Brady hit Watson in the end zone for his 2nd carrer touchdown. The 2 point conversion attempt failed. 12-7 Patriots.

I really didn't like the decision to go for 2. Why? It was way too early. Fifteen minutes left in the game. There is quite a bit of scoring possible. Had the Pats settled for 1, they could have had an 8 point lead in the late stages of the 4th quarter, which is MUCH more comfortable than a 7 point lead because it forced the other team to make a 2 point conversion in order to tie.

The Dolphins began the 4th quarter with an interception to Ellis Hobbs. The Pats got the ball on the Miami 23. The drive didn't really go anywhere and the Pats were forced to settle for 3. 15-7 Patriots.

The Dolphins finally got something going. They moved the ball from their 25 all the way down to the New England 16 yard line. The defense stood up though. On 1st and 10 from our 16, Vrabel and McGinist stuffed Williams for a loss of 2. Frerotte missed McMichael twice and the Dolphins settled for a field goal. 15-10 Patriots.

The Patriots got the ball with 8:07 left on their 31. They needed to move the ball, eat some clock, and at the very least pin the Phins back in their own territory with little time on the clock to work with. Instead, Brady made a terrible pass which was intercepted near midfield.

The Dolphins started with the ball on their 44 with 5:09 on the clock. Frerotte threw an incomplete. Then he hit Booker for 6, and then 28. On 1st and 10 from the New England 22, Frerotte missed Booker. Then he hit Chambers for 7 to the 16 yard line. On 3rd and 2, Frerotte fumbled the snap, the Pats defense stayed motionless, Chambers ran his route, Frerotte found the ball, threw, and hit Chambers for a touchdown. The Dolphins failed to convert a 2 pointer. 16-15 Miami.

The Pats got the ball with 2:53 on the clock and only one timeout. On 1st and 10 from the 24, Brady hit Tim Dwight for 59 yards. On the next play, Brady threw to Watson in the end zone. Heath Evans got the carry for the 2 point conversion attempt and made it into the end zone. 23-16, Patriots.

The only problem with the Patriots scoring drive was that it only lasted 43 seconds. Miami got it back with 2:11 on the clock. The Dolphins marched all the way down to the New England 5 yard line, needing only a touchdown and extra point to tie and force overtime. On 1st and goal from the 5, Ellis Hobbs broke up a pass intended for Marty Booker. Frerotte overthrew Chambers on 2nd and goal. On 3rd and goal, Tedy Bruschi got into Frerotte's face, forcing an early throw. Frerotte hit the outlet man, Brown, but McGinist coralled him and Poteat finished him off for a loss of 5. On 4th and goal from the 10, Frerotte threw incomplete intended for Chambers. The Pats got the ball back. Brady took a knee, and the game was over.

Saturday, November 12, 2005


Patriots CB Duane Starks has been placed on Injured Reserve, ending his first year with the Champs. Starks has been slowed by a thigh injury and was noticeably incapable of one on one coverage.

Guess how many defensive backs are on IR for the Pats. Five! Safeties Rodney Harrison and Gus Scott, Cornerbacks Tyrone Poole, Chad Scott, and now Duane Starks. This coupled with the release of Ty Law before the season has seriously disabled the Patriots ability to defend against the pass. I don't care who you are, when you have 5 DBs out for the season, you're going to give up quite a few points. Of the 10 DBs the Patriots started the season with, 5 are out for the year, and 2 (Randall Gay and James Sanders) have missed significant time due to injury.

Ellis Hobbs will probably move into the #2 CB position oppositte Asante Samuel. Hobbs was the 10th man on the Pats cornerback depth chart. Randall Gay will probably play at Safety if he can play. Hank Poteat, who was cut after camp, will be the #3 corner. Troy Brown could also see some time at defensive back. It isn't official or a rumor, but I wouldn't be too surprised if Tom Brady and Doug Flutie saw some time at cornerback if the injuries keep occuring.

The Patriots will begin the 2nd half of the regular season with only their 2nd divisional game. They're on the road against Miami, much later in the year than we are used to seeing us have to play in Florida. However, the forecast for tommorrow is 80 degrees and sunny.

Of the 8 remaining games on the schedule, 5 are within the division, 1 is non-divisional but within the AFC, and 2 are against NFC teams. 4 are at home and 4 are on the road. The Pats don't have 2 home games or two road games in a row. The schedule is much easier than the first 8 games of the season. We play the Dolphins twice, the Jets twice, the Bills, Chiefs, Saints, and Buccaneers. The Pats really need to capitalize on those division games and beat up on some bad teams if they want to claim the AFC East for the 3rd year in a row.

Friday, November 11, 2005


The Atlanta Braves are renowned for their player development. Their team had 18 rookies this season and they still made the playoffs by winning their 14th consecutive NL East title. Dayton Moore is an up and coming executive who cut his teeth in the player development department of the Braves organization. The Red Sox are seriously considering him as a candidate for Theo's replacement. I think it is a good idea to try to get someone who is good at developing young players. The Red Sox definately need to be better at this, particularly when it comes to pitching.

Yesterday was the last day of exclusive negotiations for teams to talk with free agents. Now, anyone can talk to anyone. The Red Sox have resigned Mike Timlin, and that is it. Players like Johnny Damon are free to be romanced by other teams.

Thursday, November 10, 2005


Paul Pierce had 29 points, 7 rebounds, 8 assists, and 3 steals to lead the Celtics to a 99-98 buzzer beating victory over the Memphis Grizzlies. Lafrentz added 10 points, Blount had 17, and Delonte West had 8. Ricky Davis had 18 points including this jumper with, as you can see, only 0.3 seconds remaining. Pierce got the asisst. Every Celtics game has been down to the wire. It could be a very exciting season.


Does anyone else ever think that Manny Ramirez isn't real? Does he not act like a character out of a movie? Some quiet guy who is amazing at something but never really seems focused on it. The character can't really figure out what he wants so he is always changing his mind.

Manny Ramirez has asked to be traded away from the Boston Red Sox. Why? Who the hell knows why? The Red Sox are entertaining him and making it very well known that they are seeking trading partners. This raises suspicion in me because the trade talks are so public. The Red Sox usually don't make things widely known unless it is a stratagem. On previous occasions when Manny has asked to be traded, it has been supressed by the Organization. Now, it is almost as if they are trying to make Manny beleive that they are truly looking at trading options.

This is where the lack of Theo, who is truly gone by the way, has hurt us. Theo was very energetic and creative when it came to trades. Remember 2003 when he traded prospects to the Pirates for a player and then got those prospects BACK in a deal a few days later? That's just ingenious, right there. Anyway, without Theo, the Red Sox are essentially tied at the hands until a replacement can be found.

What would be the positives for trading Manny? We'd save about $60 million over the enxt three years. We wouldn't have to deal with his lapses in the outfield and his frequent needs for vacation days. We could get someone really good in return for him.

What is he downside to trading Ramirez? There is no way that he will be replaced. He is much too good of a hitter. Even if we got a good hitter in return and spent the money we saved on hitting, we would still have to dramatically alter our offensive approach to the game.

Our lineup centers around Ortiz and Ramirez. The 1 and 2 hitters get on base, Ortiz and Manny knock them in. They also get on base for the 5, 6, and 7 hitters who knock them in. The 8 and 9 hitters knock those guys in a few times and also get on base for the 1, and 2 hitters. Without Manny, we would be losing about 150 RBI, 40 HR, and an OBP of about .400 which allows Manny to score about 110 runs. We can probably get a few guys whose offensive production will add up to Manny's, but there is no-one out there who will produce as much as Manny produces in one spot of the lineup.

Manny also helps out Ortiz. He doesn't just knock him in, he protects him. Ortiz was walked 102 times this season with Manny hitting behind him. Just imagine how many more times he will be walked with no Manny behind him. What will happen to our offensive production then?

With no Manny Ramirez, the offensive philosophy of the Red Sox, which has proven quite successful, will have to change. They'll have to use a system that utilizes production from more spots in the lineup. This could work, but consider how many younger players are coming up soon. They are going to be under a good deal of pressure to produce even from the bottom of the lineup. I think Theo could compile a team without Manny that scored 900 runs, but I don't know about anyone else in the league apart from maybe Brian Cashman.

I wouldn't be surprised if the Red Sox kept Manny. After all, we've already paid him $100 million, why not hold on to him for 3 more seasons? We have so much improvement to do elsewhere on the team, why completely change the offense, as well? Finally, he might decide he wants to stay here again.