Web Analytics and Web Statistics by NextSTAT The Boston Sports Nut: June 2008

Monday, June 30, 2008

Rays hold on to Beat Sox 5-4

Monday, June 30. Tampa Bay, FL. Ever since they got rid of the 'Devil' the Rays have been playing like hell. Since shortening their name from the Devil Ray's, Tampa Bay has managed to turn things around this season and are now (unfortunately) highly competitive. There was a time the Sox ran up a lot of 'W's' against them. Such is not the case now.

No punches, no angry words exchanged. With first place on the line in the AL East, the Tampa Bay Rays and the Red Sox and Boston Red Sox stuck to playing baseball Monday night. James Shields scattered five hits over 6 1/3 innings and B.J. Upton and Gabe Gross homered, helping the Rays remain unbeaten at home against the Red Sox with a 5-4 victory that hiked their lead to 1 1/2 games in the division.

The Rays (50-32), surprising owners of the best record in baseball, have won six of seven and shrugged off a six-game losing streak to Boston, which is 6-0 against Tampa Bay at Fenway Park but 0-4 at Tropicana Field. "I knew from both sides nothing was going to happen. It was over," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "We're professionals, they're professionals, and all that business is in the past." Shields was suspended for six games for his part in the brawl. This time, he limited Boston to two runs before Tampa Bay's bullpen barely held on to hand the Red Sox their 11th straight one-run road loss.

J.D. Drew hit his 16th homer for Boston, cutting Shields' lead to 4-2 in the sixth. It gave him 12 homers in June, third-most by a player in Red Sox history behind Jackie Jensen (14 in 1958) and Ted Williams (13, 1950). Lowell drove in Boston's first run with a fourth-inning single off Shields, who walked one and struck out five. The Rays scored four runs off Justin Masterson (4-2), three of them following two-out walks. Upton homered on the right-hander's first pitch of the game, and Gross added a two-run shot after the Boston starter walked Navarro in the fourth.

Manny being Manny? Uh uh uhhhhh.

What happens in the clubhouse, stays in the clubhouse. This wasn't very nice, but I just don't want to hear anymore about this. The media is itching to blow it out of proportion. Anything to disrupt the Red Sox, who have been playing some very inconsistent baseball all season long.

The Red Sox are confident it wasn't Manny just being Manny. Manny Ramirez has apologized for pushing the team's traveling secretary to the ground in the visitors clubhouse during a confrontation Saturday in Houston, according to a report in The Providence Journal.

RamirezRamirez had requested 16 tickets from Jack McCormick for Saturday's game against the Astros, the report said. After McCormick said that it might not be possible, Ramirez replied by yelling "just do your job," according to Monday's report. Ramirez and McCormick later discussed the incident in a private meeting, during which the left fielder made amends.
"That's over," Ramirez said Sunday, according to the report. "We're fine now."

Boston manager Terry Francona said the team had resolved the matter and was "satisfied with how we handled this." "Sometimes things happen," Francona said, according to The Journal. "And when they do, we choose to handle them internally." It wasn't the first time Ramirez was forced to put a sour incident behind him this season. Ramirez, who on May 31 became the 24th major leaguer to hit 500 home runs, had to be separated from first baseman Kevin Youkilis earlier this month after apparently taking a swing at him during a dugout argument.

"It's in the past," Ramirez said the next day. "It's a new day."

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Tough Week ahead for Sox

Hopefully, it'll be a tougher week for the Tampa Bay Rays and the N.Y. Yankees.

The Red Sox have come to a critical juncture this coming week. Having tail-spinned into second place, 1/2 game behind the Rays and 5 games ahead of the week, the Red Sox are in what amounts to must-win situations. They Rays just will not go away and apparently, they are for real. The Yankees are close behind and making a run at the Red Sox, who will play 4 important games in Yankee Stadium

Monday's matchup:

Boston Red Sox (50-34) at Tampa Bay Rays (49-32) .... Rookie Justin Masterson (4-1 3.43) goes up against James Shields (5-5 3.76) for the Rays. Big Papi is still on the DL, where it looks like he will remain until after the All Star break. Pedroia is smokin, J. D. Drew has done a great job taking Ortiz' place in the 3 spot and has had a great month...Youk has been hot at times. Manny has cooled off the past couple weeks, but he put one out today and our pitching staff is okay at times, middle relief being the big problem right now.

Friday, June 27, 2008

KRod Closing in on Saves Record.

Acl Angels closer Francisco Rodriques is cooking up a memorable season in bite-sized increments. With 37 appearances, 35 innings and 31 saves in the books, he's ready to take aim at one of the most hallowed and talked-about pitching records in Major League Baseball history.

Bobby Thigpen.......1990 57
Eric Gagne..........2003 55
John Smoltz.........2002 55
Trevor Hoffman......1998 53
Randy Myers.........1993 53
Mariano Rivera......2004 53
Eric Gagne..........2002 52
Rod Beck............1998 51
Dennis Eckersley....1992 51
Mariano Rivera......2001 50

Mets Killing Yankees

NEWS FLASH: Carlos Delgado puts Mets in front 15-5 in eigth inning. The 3-run homer gave him 9 RBI'S for the game. Let's play two!!! Yes, they'll move over to Yankee Stadium for the nightcap.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Do you remember?

Do you remember Earl Wilson (left) and Pumpsie Green (right) in 1959 playing for the Red Sox? Pumpsie played for the Sox from 1959-1962 and finished his career the following season with the Yankees. Appeared in only 277 games and batted .233, .242, .261, .233. Hit a total of 12 home runs for the Sox, of which 2 came in a game on August 25, 1961.

Through his career, Green was a modest infielder who had the distinction of being the first black player to play for the Red Sox, the last major-league club to integrate. In his Boston tenure, he was used mostly as a pinch runner or day-off replacement for infielders Pete Runnels and Frank Malzone. He made his debut on July 21, 1959, pinch-running in a 2-1 loss against the White Sox.

In an 11-season career, Earl Wilson posted a 121-109 record with 1452 strikeouts and a 3.69 ERA in 2051.2 IP. A 6-foot-3, 215-pound pitcher who relied on sliders and fastballs. Wilson made his major league debut with the Red Sox on July 31, 1959, as their first black pitchers. On June 26, 1962, at Fenway Park, Wilson no-hit the L.A. Angels, 2-0, a game in which he hit a home run. He also became the first black major league pitcher in the American League to pitch a no-hitter. Was with the Red Sox from 1959-1966 and was nothing much more than a .500 pitcher, winning a total of 56 games while losing 58. Probably would have achieved more success as a position player, as he was one of the better hitting pitchers in baseball, slugging 6 home runs in 79 at bats in 1965. Named to AL All Star time in 1966 and 1967.

This day in Red Sox History

June 26. 1962: Earl Wilson pitches a no-hitter at Fenway Park against the Los Angeles Angels.

June 24. 1958: The Red Sox trade Jack Spring to the Washington Senators for Bud Byerly.
June 23. 1917: Ernie Shore pitches the only perfect game ever at Fenway Park. Babe Ruth starts the game, but is ejected after walking the leadoff batter. Shore relieves, and after the runner is caught stealing, he retires the next 26 batters in a row.
June 23.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Tim Wakefield outduels Randy Johnson 5-0

In a matchup featuring two of the oldest current players in the Majors, Tim Wakefield shut down the Arizona DBacks completely. "I'm not facing him as a hitter, so it's kind of cool," the 41-year-old Wakefield said. "I'm actually facing their hitters and they have a pretty good lineup over there." So do the Red Sox, who got three doubles from Coco Crisp. The youngest player in their lineup, 24-year-old Brandon Moss, drove in both runs the 44-year-old Johnson allowed.

Wakefield relied on his knuckler, which travels about 65-70 mph. He mixed in some curveballs, one as slow as 55 mph -- Johnson throws some pitches almost 40 mph faster than that.
"Two guys with some great statistics going at it, totally different game, with good numbers," Crisp said. "It's a classic."

Wakefield (5-5) was 1-4 in his previous eight starts. Johnson (4-6) had his best outing in five starts, but has lost all of them.
Wakefield baffled the Diamondbacks with his knuckleball and allowed two of Arizona's three hits in seven innings.

"It was tough," Chris Young said. "It's a tough pitch to hit. Guys struggle with it because you don't really know how to approach it." Wakefield struck out six, walked one and has allowed three runs or fewer in at least seven innings in six straight starts. Manny Delcarmen struck out two in a perfect eighth and Jonathan Papelbon struck out Chad Tracy for his 23rd save in 27 chances after Craig Hansen loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth. Johnson went six innings, allowing two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and two walks.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Red Sox rally to beat DBacks 5-4

Tuesday, June 24, 2008 BOSTON Behind 4-1 in the eighth inning, the Red Sox pushed across 4 runs to take a 5-4 lead. Varitek began working his way out of a long slump and the Boston Red Sox emerged from a short one, beating the Dbacks 5-4 Tuesday night with a four-run eighth inning capped by the captain's go-ahead single. Varitek was mired in a 1-for-30 slump before driving in the go-ahead run for the Red Sox.

"Tek's been a little bit unlucky," said Mike Lowell, whose two-run double tied the game at 4. "He's hit better than just those numbers, but it always feels good for a ball to drop, especially in a big situation." They were dropping all over the place in the eighth. Boston had six hits in the inning, one more than it totaled in the first seven and two more than the Red Sox managed in Monday night's 2-1 loss in the series opener. The win maintained their one-game lead in the AL East over Tampa Bay, which beat Florida 6-4.

"Any comeback win is big," Lowell said, "especially when I saw Tampa Bay won and we can stay atop our division." Chris Smith (1-0) pitched two scoreless innings in relief of another rookie, Justin Masterson, for his first major league win. Arizona led 4-1 going into the bottom of the eighth behind the pitching of Davis and the hitting of Chad Tracy, who singled home a run in the second and hit a three-run homer, his third of the season, in the third.

"We had a good feeling going into that inning," Diamondbacks manager Bob Melvin said. "A couple of guys get on and it unraveled on us." Dustin Pedroia's seventh homer in the first was the only run off Davis through seven innings. But the left-hander allowed singles to the first two batters in the eighth, Julio Lugo and Jacoby Ellsbury, and was replaced by Chad Qualls (1-6). Pedroia singled in Lugo, but Qualls nearly got out of the jam by striking out Drew and retiring Manny Ramirez, who has one RBI in 11 games, on a grounder to third.

Here's the new Fenway Park they proposed in 1999

A proposal for a replacement for Fenway Park, made by then team CEO John Harrington on May 15, 1999, had the Red Sox moving across Yawkey Way into a bigger, modern version of Fenway Park, similar in design to the retro-style ballparks of Camden Yards in Baltimore and Jacobs Field in Cleveland. It would have been built on 15.5 acres bounded by Yawkey Way, Brookline Avenue, and Boylston Street, retained the old field dimensions and made to look like Fenway.

To read more

The Mets new ballpark (what the heck)

Comparing Yankee Stadiums

Usually I don't pay attention to anything the Yankees & Steinbroner do, but here's a comparison of the old and the new. Kind of makes you want a brand new FENWAY POCK!!!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Julio pointed the way for us!!!

Red Sox Players losing ground in All-Star Voting

Get your Ya-Ya's out, people!!

The Red Sox haven't exactly lost their grip. But as indicated by the latest weekly voting update, announced Monday afternoon, they have lost two significant edges, and their hold on a couple of other positions is looser. At catcher, Minnesota's Joe Mauer culminated a furious charge of several weeks by finally overtaking Boston's Jason Varitek. A 323,000-vote week catapulted Mauer into a 44,775 lead over the Red Sox veteran.

Meanwhile, Derek Jeter zipped past David Ortiz to grab the lead in overall votes. The Yankees captain attracted more than 424,000 votes last week to jump his total to 1,988,251, giving him a slim lead of fewer than 6,000 over the Boston designated hitter. Ortiz extended his lead at DH to more than 750,000 votes over the Yankees' Hideki Matsui, and while three of Big Papi's teammates also maintained their position leads, they are shrinking.

At first base, Kevin Youkilis' edge over Mauer's teammate, Justin Morneau, is down to fewer than 270,000. At second base, Texas' Ian Kinsler made up more than 50,000 votes on Dustin Pedroia to creep within 166,000. And among the outfield leaders, No. 1 Manny Ramirez continues to lead the Rangers' Josh Hamilton, but his cushion is down to less than 126,000 votes

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Jon Lester's last 11 starts

Jon Has Gone 5-1 with a 2.13 ERA in His Last 11 Outings

.................score.IP H R E W K
Jun 22..St.Lo....W 5-3 7.1 9 2 2 1 3
Jun 17..at PHIL..W 3-0 7.0 6 0 0 1 5
Jun 12..BAL......W 9-2 7.0 7 2 2 1 3
Jun 5...TB.......W 7-1 6.1 8 1 1 0 5
May 31..at BAL...W 6-3 5.0 7 2 2 3 4
May 25..at Oak...L 6-3 5.0 7 4 3 2 3
May 19..KC.......W 7-0 9.0 0 0 0 2 9
May 14..at Bal...L 6-3 6.0 5 2 2 2 4
May 9...at MIN...L 7-6 5.1 8 5 3 1 2
May 4...TB.......W 7-3 6.0 4 1 1 3 5
Apr 29..TOR......W 1-0 8.0 1 0 0 4 6

Youkilis Hits Walk-off in 13th; Sox Win 5-3

June 22, 2008. BOSTON, MA Kevin Youkilis socked his second home run of the game in the bottom half of the 13th inning, giving the Red Sox a 5-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals. After leading off the 10th, 11th and 12th innings with doubles and failing to score, Kevin You-Killed-Us hit a two-run home run off of Mike Parisi in the bottom of the 13th inning to lift the Boston Red Sox to a 5-3 victory over the Cardinals on Sunday.

The Red Sox avoided being swept in a series at home for the first time since losing two contests to the Blue Jays last April. The Cardinals had a chance to take the lead in the top of the 13th off Javier Lopez(2-0), but Chris Duncan was thrown out at home plate by Red Sox right fielder J.D. Drew trying to score on Adam Kennedy's base hit. "He hit the ball hard enough to be able field it on a nice run," Drew said. "I was surprised to see him going and it wound up that it was a nice hop to Tek and he had time to duck under."

After the Red Sox scored twice in the eighth to take a 3-2 lead, the Cardinals tied the game in the ninth off Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon, who blew his fourth save opportunity of the season. After striking out the first two Cardinals he faced, Duncan drew a walk and Adam Kennedy doubled to center to tie the game at 3. Joel Pineiro, who hasn't won since April 29, gave up two runs and seven hits over seven-plus innings. In his last three starts, Pineiro has allowed only five earned runs over 19 innings. Lester was nearly as good as Pineiro, allowing nine hits over 7 1/3 innings. It was his 11th straight start in which he has held his opponent to three earned runs or fewer.

Who hit the longest HR in Fenway Park history?

n Fenway Park, there is a single red seat in the right field bleachers: Section 42, Row 37, Seat 21, that measures 502 feet from home plate. It marks the spot where Ted Williams hit a home run off of Fred Hutchinson of the Detroit Tigers on June 9, 1946, the longest home run in Fenway Park history.see:


This Day in Red Sox History

June 22, 1907

The Red Sox trade Bill Dinneen to the St. Louis Browns for Beany Jacobson and $1000.

June 21, 1916

The first no-hitter ever thrown at Fenway Park was by "little George Foster, the farmer boy from Oklahoma" (as the New York Times described him). The 5'7½" Foster beat Bob Shawkey and the Yankees, 2-0. Foster walked three. The win earned Foster a $100 bonus from Red Sox President Lannin.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Dubai Sports Complex

You (and me) bought this with the oil money!!!

The image you see above is a sports complex located in Dubai. Do a google image search on 'Dubai' and see the interesting things that pop up. Matter of fact, why don't you just click on the link.
We paid for this city. It looks like something out of Disneyworld, The Jetson, etc. Wow. That shows what jacking up those oil prices will do for you.

Season Over - Schilling to have shoulder surgery

BOSTON -- Curt Schilling said Friday he will not pitch this season.

In an interview Friday morning on WEEI-AM, the Red Sox right-hander said that he will undergo surgery Monday on his injured shoulder. When asked whether that will end his season, the 41-year-old Schilling said "Yes." It is not clear if Schilling addressed whether the surgery would spell an end to his career, which has spanned 20 seasons with Baltimore, Houston, Philadelphia, Arizona and Boston.

I recall earlier in the year, Schilling wanted to have the surgrey done, but management insisted that 'he go along with their plan' to wait it out and rest his arm. I do believe that he wanted it done even before the season was underway.

I guess that this looks like the end of the road for him. I truly do not expect him back next year. It would have been great to have him pitch in Philadelphia this past week, since he did want to do a season-long curtain call. Thank you Curt for all the great memories you provided us with. However, at times you spoke out of turn. But that was probably good that you made your comments because attention was drawn toward you and away from other players. These sports writers always needed something to write about.

Be sure to check out Curt's blog 38 pitches, where I am sure he will post information on his career and surgery. He hasn't provided us with an entry yet.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

J.D. Drew's 4 hits helps down Phils 7-4

June 18, 2008 PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Eleven years later, J.D. Drew gets the same welcome whenever he visits the City of Brotherly Love: "Booooooo!" The jeers only got louder each time he got a hit.

Drew tied a career high with four hits and fell a triple short of the cycle, Justin Masterson pitched five effective innings and the Red Sox downed the Phillies 7-4 on Wednesday.
Booed each time he came up, Drew hit a three-run homer in the first inning, doubled in the third, had an RBI single in the fourth and singled in the sixth before tapping out in the eighth. He finished 4-for-5 with four RBIs. Drew has been vilified in Philadelphia since refusing to sign with the Phillies after they drafted him with the second overall pick in the 1997 amateur draft. Now with his fourth different team, the rude treatment hasn't changed. Drew even had to dodge batteries thrown from the stands the first time he came to Philly with St. Louis in 1999.
"They're not going to forget, I know that much," Drew said. "It's always one of those situations where you go out there and battle and you're going to hear things that you don't normally hear at other parks. It makes it fun."

Masterson (4-1) allowed two runs and four hits in the shortest of his six career starts. Jonathan Papelbon, the fourth Boston reliever, pitched a perfect ninth for his 21st save in 24 chances.

Red Sox Logos through the years

The following logos have been used by the Boston Red Sox over the many years they have been in existence. Perhaps you might recogize some?

Left - 1909-1911... right 1912-1930

left 1931-1932........right 1934-1949

left 1950-1959..... middle 1960-1961.... right 1962-current

Red Sox All-time Stolen Base Leaders

The following players have the highest number of stolen bases in a single season.
1. Tommy Harper......54 (1973)
2. Tris Speaker......52 (1912)
3. Tris Speaker......46 (1913)
4. Tris Speaker......42 (1914)
4. Otis Nixon........42 (1994)
6. Harry Hooper......40 (1910)
6. Billy Werber......40 (1934)
8. Harry Hooper......38 (1911)

9. Harry Lord........36 (1909)
10. Patsy Dougherty..35 (1903)
11. Jacoby Ellsbury..34 (2008)

Celtics chomp LA Lakers 131-92

June 17, 2008. Boston, MA The Boston Celtics capped off one of their greatest season's ever, winning the NBA Championship for the 17th time... on the 17th of June with #17 (John Hondo Havlicek) in the house. Kevin McHale, Robert Parish and Larry Bird did not come walking through that door, but the 2007-8 edition of 'The Big 3' most certainly did. Beginning with preseason practices in Europe, these were men on a mission and everything they set out to do was accomplished by winning it all.
At times, they stumbled through the playoffs, having difficulties winning on the road in Atlanta, Cleveland and Detroit. They were able to win game 4 in Los Angeles and that set the stage for what was about to happen. Intensity and defense. That was what won this last game for them. The Big 3 combined for 73 points and 25 rebounds. Ray Allen tied the playoff record with seven 3 pt field goals.

Where's Kobe? Who is this Kobe dude? He scored 11 points in the first seven minutes of the game and pretty much disappeared after that as the tough Celtic defense smothered him completely. This is a 'team game'... it's not all about Kobe Bryant. Take a lesson from the Boston Celtics. Defense and team unity are two elements that these world champions possessed.

With Russell and Havlicek sitting courtside, and Red surely lighting up a victory cigar somewhere, the Celtics returned to glory like the great teams before them, dominating in a way the Finals have never seen. On a new parquet floor below aging championship banners hung in the rafters two decades back, the Celtics won their 17th NBA title and a first one -- at last -- for Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen -- their Big Three for a new generation.

"It means so much more because these are the guys, the Havliceks, the Bill Russells, the Cousys," Pierce said. "These guys started what's going on with those banners. They don't hang up any other banners but championship ones.
"And now I'm a part of it."

Rajon Rondo came up big, had 21 points, eight assists, seven rebounds and six steals as the Celtics, who built a 23-point halftime lead and obliterated the Lakers, who were trying to become the first team to overcome a 3-1 deficit in the Finals. They didn't stand a chance.
Boston's 39-point win surpassed the NBA record for the biggest margin of victory in a championship clincher; the Celtics beat the Lakers 129-96 in Game 5 of the 1965 NBA Finals.

It's was Boston's first title since the passing of Auerbach, whose presence was the only thing missing on this night. Even Auerbach, who died in 2006, got some satisfaction. Led by Rivers, Auerbach's beloved team denied Lakers coach Phil Jackson from overtaking him with a 10th championship. The Boston-Los Angeles rivalry, nothing more than black-and-white footage from the 60s and TV highlights of players wearing short shorts in the 80s to young hoops fans, remains tilted toward the Atlantic Ocean. The Celtics are 9-2 against the Lakers in the Finals.

Lester silences potent Phillie's bats 3-0

June 17, 2008. Philadelphia, PA. Jonathan Lester pitched seven strong innings, allowing six hits and walking only one, improving his record to 7-3. He has allowed three runs or less in each of his last 10 starts and is 5-1 with a 2.09 ERA over that span. Lester struck out five over seven shutout innings and Coco Crisp homered to lead the Bosox to a 3-0 win over the Phillies on Tuesday night. "I think his confidence is growing," Francona said of Lester. "It looks like he's trying to grow up as a major league pitcher."

"It seems like every start, things are getting better," Lester said. "Walks are going down, I'm more around the zone with better command of my stuff. I have the confidence to throw any pitch, any time." Lester peered over reporters' heads to catch a glimpse of the NBA Finals halftime show. Crisp gave him all the offense he needed with a two-run homer in the second inning off left-hander Jamie Moyer (7-4). Julio Lugo added an RBI double in the sixth. Papelbon struck out the side in the 9th for his 20th save.

Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Pat Burrell finished 0-for-12 with eight strikeouts against three Boston pitchers. Burrell was impressed with Boston's lefty starter.
"We hadn't seen him before and he's pretty good," he said.

The Red Sox went wild on the basepaths, stealing a total of 6 bases. Jacoby Ellsbury stole his league-leading 34th base; was caught attempting to swipe 3rd base though, the 4th time a pitcher has nabbed him.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

While Boston placed Bartolo Colon on the 15-day DL because of lower back stiffness, they do expect Daisuke Matsuzaka to rejoin the rotation Saturday. Meanwhile, injured right-hander Curt Schilling was sent back to Boston for an examination with team doctors. Colon (4-2, 4.09 ERA) was injured Monday taking a swing during an at-bat against the Phillies. Colon left after five innings because of the stiffness.

"He has a history of issues, that's why we're being somewhat cautious," manager Terry Francona said before the Red Sox played the Phillies. "We would like to have him for the whole year and not just have him, but have him be productive and healthy." Boston recalled righty Chris Smith from Triple-A Pawtucket to take Colon's spot. Here's Chris Smith's stats

With Colon on his way out, Dice-K appears to be on his way in. Francona said Matsuzaka was set to start Saturday against St. Louis. Matsuzaka (8-0, 2.53 ERA) allowed two runs and three hits over five innings in a rehab start for Triple-A Pawtucket on Monday night, his first game action since straining his rotator cuff last month.

Schilling is a whole different story. On the 60-day DL since spring training with shoulder weakness, Schilling will head back to Boston to have his shoulder examined by medical director Dr. Thomas Gill. Francona said Schilling had reached a "little bit a plateau" in his recovery.
"It's been a frustrating week for him," Francona said.

Colon DL'ed; Dice-K threw in Pawtucket

The Red Sox, as expected, placed Colon on the 15-day disabled list.

Meanwhile, the PAWSOX defeated Lehigh Valley 9-6 on Tuesday as Dice-K started for them and threw 5 innings, allowing 3 hits and 2 runs. He also struck out 5 and walked 1. He tossed a total of 65 pitches in his 'workout', 47 of which were strikes, an excellent ration. He is expected to return this weekend against St Louis.

Let's Do it Tonight!!!

Let's unwrap the boxes of cigars; Put the champagne in the ice bucket and get ready to PARTAY!!!! Just get ready..... but we've got one hell of a ballgame to play. Our defense has to pave the way to a 17th World Championship. The Larry O'Brien Trophy is in the house. David Stern is on hand to present the gaudy gold bucket-and-ball to the Boston Celtics for the first time in 22 years. The Celtics have come too far to blow this thing now, and that's why it ends tonight. But let's not count our chickens until they hatch.

Ray Allen is expected to play in Game 6 of the Finals tonight after tending to a medical situation involving his youngest son in Los Angeles. According to a team official, Allen was at the hospital all day yesterday with his son and was scheduled to fly home late last night or early today. According to the official, Allen's son went to the hospital for treatment prior to Game 5 Sunday night and has recovered well. The official said Allen was disappointed after hearing about erroneous reports suggesting his oldest daughter was being treated at the hospital.

Looks like Perkins is going to give it a shot tonight.... Maybe it was meant to be... the Celtics winning the Championship on the home parquet. Let's get it over tonight...anything could happen in a Game 7 if we don't.

Circus Acts continue in NY - Randolph Fired

The New York Mets (finally) dumped Willie Randolph as their manager this morning. Jerry Manuel will take over as interim manager. Last season, the Mets got off to a fantastic start and were heavily favored to make it to the World Series. He was the first big-league manager to get canned this season. The Mets have a payroll of $138 million and had just won two in a row but are hovering right around the .500 mark.

Yankee's Wang out until September!!!

Yankees ace Chien-Ming Wang is expected to be sidelined until at least September after injuring his foot running the bases, prompting club co-chairman Hank Steinbrenner to chastise the National League for playing without a designated hitter. An examination in New York on Monday showed Wang partially tore a tendon and sprained his right foot Sunday during the Yankees' 13-0 interleague win at Houston. He will be on crutches and wear a protective boot for a minimum of six weeks, the latest blow to the team's banged-up pitching staff. "My only message is simple. The National League needs to join the 21st century," Steinbrenner said in Tampa, Fla. "They need to grow up and join the 21st century.

AL Player of the Week - June 9-15

Sabathia named AL Player of the Week
Indians left-hander rewarded for two strong starts

C.C. Sabathia's Cy Young form has evaded him for much of this season. Not last week, though. The Indians' ace had it hook, line and sinker. His two starts last week had Indians fans reminiscing of his 19-win, American League Cy Young Award-winning performances of last season. For his efforts, he earned a pair of wins and on Monday, the big left-hander was named AL Player of the Week. But in his two starts last week, he looked like his old dominant self. He tossed a complete-game shutout against the Twins on Tuesday, and followed it up by outdueling four-time Cy Young winner Greg Maddux on Sunday. In those starts, he permitted just three runs, 11 hits and one walk while striking out 15.

Hopefully, J.D. Drew's week did not go unnoticed. Three Red Sox players have received the 'award' this season: John Lester (May 19-25), Kevin Youkilis (May 5-11) and Manny Ramirez (Apr 14-20).

Monday, June 16, 2008

Contracts of Red Sox players

I found a website that provides details of player's contracts. Here's the page for the Red Sox. You can also check on other teams. This website will be listed on my baseball links located on the left hand side of this page.


Ryan Howard homers twice to crush Sox 9-2

In a battle between two of the top teams in MLB, the Red paid a visit to Philadelphia and did not get any 'Brotherly Love" (city of Brotherly Love) as they were drubbed 9-2. The Phillies put on an early show of power, clubbing a couple home runs in the first inning.

Ryan Howard provided the biggest bat, socking two home runs and a triple, driving in four runs. Jimmy Rollins also homered.

Phils pitcher Cole Hamels (7-4) allowed two runs and seven hits in seven-plus innings. Since consecutive poor outings last month, the left-hander has a 1.50 ERA in his last three starts.
"I believe we're destined to play each other in the World Series," Hamels said. "We can compete with them any day of the week." Dustin Pedroia and J.D. Drew hit consecutive homers for Boston, which has won twice as many World Series titles in the last four years as the Phillies have in the franchise's 126-year history.

Red Sox starter Bartolo Color (4-2) gave up four runs and six hits in four innings before leaving with back stiffness. "I think I did it on a swing," Colon said through a translator. "We'll find out more tomorrow, but I think I'll make my next start." week."

Howard is hitting just .224 on the season and leads Major League Baseball with 97 strikeouts, 13 better than Arizona's Mark Reynolds, who is in second. Howard is on pace to break his major league record of 199 strikeouts he set last season by 19.

Colon down, Dice-K up, Justin stays

That's what it's going to look like in a couple days after Colon has his latest injury evaluated. This time he hurt his back swinging during the Phillies game. Dice-K was supposed to throw tonight in the minors, but it was raining. Looks like he'll be back in time to take Colon's place later in the week against the Cardinals. So, instead of being sent back down, Masterson will be around for a couple more weeks or even longer than that.

Red Sox 20 Top Prospects?

Red Sox Top 20 Prospects as rated by Josh Poore of Hardball Scouts
The Boston system is a strong one. Clay Buchholz and Jacoby Ellsbury are household names to anyone who follows prospects and both should be impact players for years to come. However, those two players are just a taste of the talent that the Red Sox have waiting in the wings.

Clay Buchholz, RHP Righty phenom with fine change and curve looks to be in the Boston rotation for years to come.
Jacoby Ellsbury, OF Speedster showed he is ready for the big stage and should be able to provide a steady presence at the top of the lineup this year.
Lars Anderson, 1B Power prospect should mash in Lancaster this season. A candidate to be at the top of this list a year from now.
Jed Lowrie, SS In a great bounce-back year, he continued to show great plate discipline while adding power.
Justin Masterson, RHP Big bodied groundball specialist moved from the 'pen to the rotation and showed no ill effects.
Michael Bowden, RHP Breezed through the Cal League, which is no small feat. Fly ball pitcher with great control.
Nick Hagadone, LHP Lefty had a great pro debut, with a 0.00 ERA over his last nine appearances at short-season Lowell.
Ryan Kalish, OF A broken hamate cut his season short, but at 19 years old in the NY-Penn League he put up a .368/.471/.540 line against older competition to go along with 18 steals in just 23 games.
Oscar Tejeda, SS Toolsy shortstop held his own at just 17 years of age, showing the ability to hit for average and steal bases. Huge upside.
Josh Reddick, OF Flashed power in his pro debut in the SAL while playing all three outfield spots. Will Middlebrooks, SS/ 3B Signed over slot and too late to see action. Has a good arm and was considered a much better talent than his 5th round draft status may indicate.
Brandon Moss, OF Profiles as a solid backup OF at the MLB level. Strikes out a lot, but has some pop. Could see time in Boston this year.
Devern Hansack, RHP Ranked this high because he is Major League ready. Highly doubtful he will ever be better than he is right now, but he has posted strong numbers in the high minors and could see time in Boston this year if injuries strike the BoSox staff.
Zach Daeges, OFDemolished the Cal League with a .330/.423/.579 line. Granted, it was in Lancaster, a hitting paradise, but he is still a player to watch.
Craig Hansen, RHP Needs to find a more consistent slider and build mental toughness. Still too young to give up on.
Dustin Richardson, LHP Overlooked prospect strikes out a hitter per inning while giving up very few gopher balls.
Aaron Bates, 1B A good mix of power and patience. Playing at Portland this year will tell us if he is for real.
Ryan Dent, SS Showed speed in his pro debut but needs to sharpen up his strike zone. Another exciting young middle infielder in this system.
Jason Place, OF Toolsy outfielder who needs to make more consistent contact. Looking like an overdraft at this point.
George Kottaras, C Once promising catching prospect has slipped badly. Bat has gotten worse as he has aged and now profiles as a backup at best

A great website for Red Sox fans!!

Just stumbled across another nice website for fans to visit. It is called:


and contains a wealth of information.

*Why is Sweet Caroline played at the ballpark?
*info on The Red Sox Radio Network
*Obstructed View; The Poles at Fenway Park
*Top 20 Red Sox Prospects

Check it out sometime. I'm going to add the link on the left-hand side of the page so we all can check it periodically.

Greatest Baseball Movies

Of course, any movie about the Red Sox has to rank amongst the 'greatest', but here are a couple links to websites that provide listings of the 'Greatest Baseball Movies.'

http://www.bostonbaseball.com/baseball_movies/ provides info on a large number of movies and shows their DVD covers. (see illustrations below)

http://www.sandlotshrink.com/moviebb.htm This is a numerical listing of all-time favorite baseball.

This Day in Red Sox History - June 16

In Red Sox history the following events occured on this date:

1982 Pitching one scoreless inning to protect a 1-0 lead, Red Sox reliever Jeff Reardon breaks Rollie Fingers' career save mark of 341.

1965 Denny McLain enters the game in relief in the first inning and strikes out the first seven batters he faces to set a major league record. The Tigers go on to beat the Red Sox, 6-5

May 26, 1976 Ken Brett (White Sox) no-hit bid end with two outs in the ninth, when third baseman Jorge Orta hopes Angels’ Jerry Remy slow roller will go foul. It doesn't and the no-hitter is lost, but George’s brotherwins game in 11th, 1-0.

Celtics fight back huge deficits again; but lose. NO CIGAR YET.

Sunday, June 14, 2008. Los Angeles, CA Put away the cigars, pack up the champagne and head to Boston for Game 6 of the 2008 NBA Finals. The C's fought back from huge deficits once again, 18 points and 12 points, but couldn't hold on to their slim lead in the 4th quarter as the Lakers bounced back and pulled out a 103-98 victory.

Paul Pierce was the star of the game, as he led the Celtics with 38 points and played all but two seconds. He tossed in 16 points in the second quarter, leading the comeback. KG put up good numbers, dropping in 13 points and 14 rebounds, and Ray Allen had 16 points. But Boston's Big Three couldn't close out their first chance at winning it all, and now will get two cracks at home.

Following the game, Allen did not speak to the media. Celtics coach Rivers said: "Ray Allen was forced to leave Staples Center right at the conclusion of tonight's game due to a health issue with one of his children. We ask that you please respect Ray's privacy at this time, and we'll keep you up to date as best we can moving forward." Allen has a daughter, Tierra, and sons Walter Ray Allen III and Walker. The Celtics, trying to win their first title since 1986, are consoled by the fact they are going home. They are 47-7 at TD Banknorth Garden this season.

Boston Celtics center Kendrick Perkins did not play, as he was resting his strained left shoulder.
Leon Powe took Perkins' place in the starting lineup. It was the first playoff start of Powe's career.

"I know I'm not ready to go," Perkins said in the visitor's locker room at Staples Center, wearing street clothes while the rest of his teammates got in uniform for the potential clincher. "If we have a Game 6, I'm sure I'll be ready to go. But I hope we close it out."

Reds Rumors are Flying

Reports that Reds right fielder Ken Griffey Jr. is considering waiving his no-trade clause so he could be dealt to the Rays appear to be untrue. That is just one of the stories coming out of Cincinnati lately.

I heard during the Reds broadcast yesterday (listened to the Red Sox-Reds on XM radio) and they could be unloading a number of high profile players, including Griffey. In addition, Bronson Arroyo, Adam Dunn were named. I highly doubt that the Red Sox will pick up anybody and I don't foresee the Yankees going after any of the Red's players yet.... except they do need pitching and could use some bench strength. The Yankees will be making moves by the end of July, even though they have been winning LATELY. They are going to 're-tool'.

Red Sox play long ball - smash 4 homers in 9-0 drubbing

June 14, 2008. Cincinnati, OH. The Red Sox pounded out four home runs as they beat the sinking Cincinnati Reds 9-0. J.D. Drew socked his 7th homer during the month of June to continue his torrid hitting. Cocoa Crisp homerd and drove in 4 runs. Jacoby Ellsbury homered and stole two more bases. Dustin Pedroia also homered, making it four round-trippers, the most they have slugged in a game this year. Drew has been Boston's mainstay in June, batting .447 with seven homers and 16 RBIs.

Manny Ramirez sat out a second straight game with a sore right hamstring, and Big Papi was in Boston taking care of a sore wrist. The Sox have now won 12 in its last 16 games. "Those guys make us better, no doubt," Crisp said. "Without them, we were still able to put up some runs. It shows we're a good team without our two superstars."

Ellsbury opened the game with a single, stole second and third, and scored on Pedroia's sacrifice fly. Ellsbury's 33 steals are a club rookie record, two better than Amby McConnell's mark from 1908. Cleveland's Kenny Lofton stole 66 bases in 1992 for the American League record by a rookie and that mark appears to be in jeopardy. The Sox have never had a baserunner like Ellsbury. The major league record for steals by a rookie is 110, set by the Cardinals' Vince Coleman in 1985.

"It's pretty neat to do something that hasn't been done in Red Sox history for 100 years," Ellsbury said. "Still, it's all about getting momentum in the game. I wouldn't say it's deflating to steal second and third then score, but it does establish momentum with Josh on the mound."

Boston took two of three in a city that holds nothing but bad memories for its fans. The Red Sox lost two of three in Cincinnati during the 1975 World Series, which the Big Red Machine finished off in Game 7 at Fenway Park.

Josh Beckett (7-4) turned the big lead into his first career victory over the Reds, who hit him hard the two times he faced them with Florida. Beckett allowed six hits -- three by Joey Vottoo -- in seven innings.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Celtics pull off Miracle comeback from 24 down

Thursday, June 12, 2008. Los Angeles. CA. The Boston Celtics pulled off the greatest comeback in NBA Playoff history, as they fought back and overcame a 24-point deficit in hostile Los Angeles giving them a commanding 3-1 lead in the 7-game series, which is heading back to Boston on Sunday.

This was how the Boston Celtics of yesteryear -- Cous and Russell and Bird and Hondo and the Chief -- would do it. Digging deep, they fought for every loose ball, scrapping with grit and guts, champions clad in green. These Celtics are no different. dAnd they are just one win from another NBA title. "Yeah," said KG said. "I can taste it."

In their comeback season, Boston saved its biggest one of all for the finals.
The Celtics rallied from a 24-point deficit and beat the Lakers 97-91 on Thursday night to take a commanding 3-1 lead in this history-rich series and move within one victory of a 17th championship that seemed impossible a year ago.

Boston's comeback included a 21-3 run over the final five minutes, fueled by two 3-pointers from Eddie House, who was getting more playing time because of Rajon Rondo'd tender left ankle. The Celtics were still down by double digits with 2 minutes left in the third but closed the quarter with a 10-1 run, capped by P.J. Brown's dunk -- a slam that could be felt all the way back to Boston's North End. The Celtics finally caught the Lakers at 73-all on Leon Powe's jumper in the lane with 9:05 remaining, tying the score for the first time since it was 2-2 in the first minute.

At that point, the Lakers looked lost, confused, you name it. And when House hit an 18-foot jumper with 4:07 remaining, the Celtics had their first lead, 84-83. Boston's bench erupted, Lakers fans gasped and it was just a matter of time before they were heading out of Staples Center wondering what went wrong.

Lowell Slams O's 9-2

Thursday, June 12 Boston, MA. Mike Lowell blasted his second grand slam of the season and Kevin Youkilis also hit a two-run homer as the Red Sox posted a 9-2 win at home against the Baltimore Orioles. Red-hot J.D. Drew, filling in for slugger David Ortiz, hit a two-run homer and a double. With Big Papi missing, the Sox are 8-3 and have pulled 2 1/2 games ahead of second place Tampa Bay.

Drew is 18-for-36 with six homers and 15 RBIs since the designated hitter has been sidelined with a wrist injury, raising his batting average from .282 to .324. He also has five doubles, a triple, 15 runs and 10 walks in that span.

John Lester had another solid pitching performance. Lester (5-3) allowed seven hits and one walk while striking out three in seven innings in his return from a five-game suspension after he hit two Tampa Bay batters June 5 during a game in which there was a benches-clearing brawl. The extra day of rest "made it worse," he said. "It feels weird."

He allowed just two runners to reach second base in the first five innings, then struggled in the sixth when he gave up doubles to Brian Roberts, Oscar Salazar and Aubrey Huff that cut the lead to 5-2.

The streaking Drew kept filling the hole left by Boston's injured slugger on Thursday night when he hit a two-run homer and a double as the Red Sox kept rolling at home with a 9-2 win over the Orioles.

Life with Milton

It hasn't been easy for Milton Bradley. Milton, my man, you need to sit down with Jimmy Piersall (79 years old) and have a chat with him. I see a lot of parallels between the two of you. (Readers: After you are finished reading about Milton, please scroll down to 'Things to read' in the left hand column and click on Jimmy Piersall and you shall see similar behavior patterns. Milton, I hope you can last in MLB (3-4 more teams) until you are at least 37 years old. You could have a good career ahead of you and then get yourself into broadcasting. You have a lot to say. Maybe you and Ryan Lefebvre might get a chance to team up in a booth someplace. Who knows, the two of you could end up broadcasting for the Staten Island Yankees in the NY-Penn league. Or even the NY Yankees....at least you wouldn't be babbling all kind of useless, idiotic 'Yankee this, Yankee that' jibberish!!

The oft-injured Bradley has a history of losing his temper. Here are some of the altercations that Milton has been involved in:

*He slammed a plastic bottle at the feet of a fan in the right-field seats at Dodger Stadium in 2004 after someone threw it on the field. With San Diego in the pennant chase last September, he tore the ACL in his right knee when he was spun to the ground by Padres manager Bud Black, who was trying to keep him from an umpire.

*He was suspended for five games after slamming the bottle, and had a four-game suspension for tossing a bag of balls onto the field after an ejection.

*There was a dugout confrontation with Cleveland manager Eric Wedge during spring training in 2004 before getting traded to Los Angeles. Bradley claimed umpire Mike Winters baited the player into the confrontation and directed a profanity at him last September. Winters was suspended the final five days of the regular season and didn't work the postseason.

"We weren't singling out Milton Bradley," Lefebvre said. "We also spent a lot of time complimenting Milton Bradley, but that's not what he heard when he was in the clubhouse.
"We weren't tearing up Milton Bradley. I told [Washington and Daniels] this wasn't a Milton Bradley rip session, but just based on the pictures we've seen in this series of him walking to the dugout all the way to right field, dropping his bat, making gestures to the fans in right field and above the dugout and taunting them. He's the only person in baseball I know that does that type of stuff."

Fenway food stands failed inspections

Fenway Park's food stands flunked city health inspections on more than a dozen health and safety measurements on Red Sox opening day April 8, from storing food at unsafe temperatures to failing to clean food preparation counters.

City inspectors discovered the violations, which were significant enough to pose a risk of food poisoning for patrons, even though they had found virtually the same set of problems in an examination more than a week earlier and demanded corrective action.

Read more on food stand heath inspections

Heeeeeere's Milton.

Milton Bradley.... please, somebody give him a hug. He needs one. One of the true 'characters' of the game. His stormy past has resurrected itself in spite of the wonderful season he is having.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. --Milton Bradley stormed out of the Texas Rangers clubhouse after an 11-5 victory Wednesday night over Kansas City and bounded up four flights of stairs looking for Royals television announcer Ryan Lefebvre. Bradley, who was the designated hitter, heard what he considered derogative remarks made by Lefebvre on a TV in the Rangers clubhouse.
General manager Jon Daniels and manager Ron Washington were close behind and intercepted Bradley before he reached Lefebvre. "I don't want to get necessarily into the details," Daniels said. "He was upset. Someone who doesn't know him was passing judgment on TV. It was obvious he was hurt by the comments." Bradley never reached Lefebvre, although he was within about 20 feet of him in the TV booth before being led back down to the clubhouse.

"There was no incident," Daniels said. Upon returning to the clubhouse, Bradley screamed at teammates and broke down in tears. "I'm tired of people bringing me down," Bradley said. "It wears on you. I love you guys, all you guys. I'm strong, but I'm not that strong. All I want to do is play baseball and make a better life for my kid than I had."
Lefebvre, who is the son of former major league manager Jim Lefebvre, said he met with Daniels and Washington about his on-the-air comments, but did not talk to Bradley. Lefebvre said the comments were intended to praise Josh Hamilton, who missed nearly four years of professional baseball with cocaine and alcohol additions, rather than tear down Bradley. "It was a conversation about how Josh Hamilton has turned his life around and has been accountable for his mistakes," Lefebvre told The Associated Press. "Right now, it seems like the baseball world and fans are rooting for him. ... It doesn't seem like Milton Bradley has done the same thing in his life."

Looks like it's time for a 'mental health day' for the Texas Ranger's slugger who was hitting .333 with 14 dingers and 45 RBI's. It's a shame that Lefebvre or somebody there had to mess with the guy, who is having his best year. A career .278 hitter, the 30-year old Bradley has played for a total of 6 major league teams over a career spanning 9 years. However, he has not lasted more than 2 years with any team. In the coming days, I'll detail some of his stormy past. I hope he gets discounts when he buys multiple uniforms for all these different teams. Maybe he'll be wearing Giant orange in the future. Those guys need another character (who can hit) in their lineup to stir things up. We know he'll never end up with the Red Sox. However, we do have some hot tempers in our clubhouse.

Colon Bags Win #150; Sox beat O's 6-3

June 11, 2008 Boston, MA
Bartolo Colon picked up the 150th win of his career as the Red Sox survived a mini-rally in the 9th inning by the Orioles.

I don't really think about the wins," Colon, who signed a minor league contract in spring training, said through a translator. "Every start I do, I'm starting to feel a little better."
Colon (4-1) got his last win of 2007 on June 14. On Wednesday, he allowed one run in six innings under a contract worth $1.2 million plus performance and roster bonuses.

The 35-year-old right-hander already has more than half as many wins as he totaled over the last two injury-plagued seasons with the Los Angeles Anges when he was 7-13 with a 5.72 ERA in 29 games. This season, he's looked more like the pitcher who won the Cy Young three years ago with a 21-8 record and a 3.48 ERA.

Varitek's three-run homer capped the five-run first against Garrett Olson (5-2). Varitek hadn't been feeling well and was replaced in the ninth by Kevin Cash. "I wasn't feeling real good all game," Varitek said. "I'm pretty achy and [Francona] with the five-run lead decided to make the switch. ... I'll get a good night's sleep and we'll see."

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Saga of Tim Donaghy

Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy has pleaded guilty to federal felony conspiracy charges alleging that he passed along inside information on NBA games. Donaghy also alleges that referees helped alter the outcomes of games during the '02 and '05 postseasons.

First of all, Donaghy is heading for jail and is liable to concoct a number of stories. Take everything he says with a grain of salt. Believe what you may.

Was Game 3 of the 2008 NBA Finals held at the scene of a crime? Disgraced ex-referee Tim Donaghy alleged as much Tuesday in a filing made by his attorney in U.S. District Court in New York, saying the highly controversial Game 6 of the Lakers-Kings playoff series in 2002 was impacted by the actions of two of the three referees who worked the game.''

NBA commissioner David Stern vehemently denied the allegations, saying they are the desperate act of a convicted felon. He also disclosed that the league has already briefed members of the U.S. Congress on certain facets of the Donaghy investigation. "We welcome scrutiny here. This is something that should be scrutinized," said Stern, who called Donaghy a "singing, cooperating witness" and repeatedly referred to the former referee as a felon as he spoke with reporters for more than eight minutes near the loading dock of the Staples Center as he arrived for Game 3 of the Finals.


"Referees A, F and G were officiating a playoff series between Teams 5 and 6 in May of 2002. It was the sixth game of a seven-game series, and a Team 5 victory that night would have ended the series. However, Tim learned from Referee A that Referees A and F wanted to extend the series to seven games. Tim knew referees A and F to be 'company men,' always acting in the interest of the NBA, and that night, it was in the NBA's interest to add another game to the series. Referees A and F heavily favored Team 6. Personal fouls [resulting in obviously injured players] were ignored even when they occurred in full view of the referees. Conversely, the referees called made-up fouls on Team 5 in order to give additional free throw opportunities for Team 6. Their foul-calling also led to the ejection of two Team 5 players. The referees' favoring of Team 6 led to that team's victory that night, and Team

The Lakers-Kings series was the only one that postseason that went seven games, and the officiating in Game 6 was so questionable that consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader called for a formal investigation. The Lakers attempted 40 free throws to the Kings' 25 in that game, and Los Angeles made 21 of 27 from the line while Sacramento converted 7 of 9 in the fourth quarter alone. in addition, a foul was called against Mike Bibby of the Kings after he was shoved and elbowed by Korbe Bryant, denying the Kings an opportunity to try for a tying basket. Also in that game, Kings centers Vlade Divac and Scot Pollard fouled out, and Kings coach Rick Adelman was highly critical of the officiating afterward.

"My first thought [upon hearing Donaghy's allegation] was: I knew it," Pollard said Tuesday night. "I'm not going to say there was a conspiracy. I just think something wasn't right. It was unfair. We didn't have a chance to win that game." The Lakers went on to win the 2002 NBA championship.

Pierce 2-14 in Celtics 87-81 loss

Paul Pierce cooled off from his great performance, shooting just 2-14 in the 3rd game of the NBA Finals. Kobe Bryant popped in 36 points and Sasha Vujacic added 20 points The Lakerw were in danger of going down 3-0 in the NBA Finals

Magic Johnson looked very nervous. Across the court, Jack Nicholson fidgeted with his sunglasses, Sylvester Stallone squirmed in his seat and nearly everyone else styling in shades of purple and gold was on edge.

Ray Allen scored 25 points -- 15 on 3-pointers -- for the Celtics, but only one-third of Boston's Big Three showed up. The other two, Garnet and Pierce scored a grand total of 19 points while the two of them went 8-35 shooting. "As bad as we played, we still had opportunities," Allen said. "That's the positive. We can look at it, but I don't think on either side of the floor we were good. We had so much more room for improvement."

Pierce grew up in Inglewood, Calif., where he learned to play in the shadow of the Fabulous Forum, the Lakers' former home where Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and "Showtime" had an extended run of championship seasons.

But Pierce's finals homecoming was homely. The Celtics' star forward, who came in averaging 25 points in the series, went just 2-for-14 and missed all four 3-pointers. Despite his struggles, the Celtics were only down six early in the third quarter when Rondo went down with a sprained left ankle. As he laid on the floor, his teammates rushed over to check on Rondo, who limped off the court without aid -- or a wheelchair -- like Pierce famously needed after hurting his knee in the opener. Boston.com boxscore

O's Huff and puff their way to a 10-6 win

Boston, MA June 10. The Sox lost at home for just the 7th time this season in a see-saw battle as they lost for only the second time in their last 17 games at Fenway Park. After J.D. Drew (9) and Manny (15) went back-to-back, giving the Sox a 6-4 lead, the O's put up 3 runs in the seventh inning with Aubrey poking a two-run single off an ineffective Okajima, who took the loss in giving up a total of 3 runs in 1/3 inning of work. The Orioles have eight of the nine runs Okajima has allowed this year.

Josh Becket gave up 8 hits and 4 runs in 6 innings of work. He had just one bad inning when he gave up four runs in the second on two-run doubles by Bynum and Roberts that gave Baltimore a 4-3 lead. He constantly had to work out of jams in the early innings. Craig Hansen finished up allowing 3 runs on 4 hits in the 9th inning.

On a steamy night with a game-time temperature of 93 degrees, the Orioles scored in just three innings with four runs in the second, three in the seventh and three in the ninth. They've scored 29 runs in their last four games, three of them wins. "It's tough to come in here and play. It always has been ever since I've been in this division," said Huff, who spent 6½ seasons with Tampa Bay. "Probably the best thing we did was tack on three more runs there in the ninth inning because I've seen these guys come back."

In a pregame ceremony, Murray presented Ramirez with a plaque commemorating his 500th homer, hit off Bradford in Baltimore on May 31

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Legend Named Harry

"The Mayor of Rush Street"

Too bad that Harry Caray is not around to enjoy this season as sportscaster of the Chicago Cubs. I can hear him now....."Cubs win!!!! Cubs win!!!". We all loved his renditions of "Take me out to the ballgame" which he sang along with the fans in the bottom of the seventh inning. Probably could call him eccentric.

Harry was born on March 1, 1914 in St. Louis, Missouri and passed away on February 18, 1998 in Rancho Mirage, CA. was a radio and TV broadcaster for four Major League franchises; the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs, Oakland A's (one year) and the Chicago White Sox (eleven years).

He caught his first big break when he landed the job with the Cardinals in 1945. and quickly proved to be as much an expert in selling the sponsor's beer as he was in promoting KMOX. He lasted 24 years with the Cardinals.

In 1969, he became an announcer for the Oakland Athletics, lasting only one year as he and Charlie 'O fell out of favor with one another. Apparently the feeling was mutual; Finley later said "that shit [Caray] pulled in St. Louis didn't go over here.") As had happened in St. Louis, Caray became popular with Chicago listeners and enjoyed a reputation for joviality and public carousing (sometimes doing home game broadcasts bare-topped from the bleachers). He wasn't always popular with players, however; Caray had an equivalent reputation of being excessively critical of home team blunders and for continuing criticism of certain players after even one on-field mistake. He wasn't always popular with players, however; Caray had an equivalent reputation of being excessively critical of home team blunders and for continuing criticism of certain players after even one on-field mistake. In 1970, he took a job as a Chicago White Sox announcer.

In 1976, during a game against the Rangers, Harry had former outfielder Jimmy Piersall (who was working for the Rangers at the time) as a guest in the White Sox booth that night. This odd couple proved to work so well, that Piersall was hired to be Harry's partner in the White Sox radio and TV booth beginning in 1977. Piersall and Caray became very popular, and are and still fondly remembered by White Sox fans to this day. They made the White Sox broadcasts interesting even if the team was not doing well. You can just imagine how wild these two must have sounded together.

Caray went from local favorite to national phenomenon, however, after joining the Cubs following the 1981. At the same time White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf was unsuccessfully floating a pay-TV scheme for White Sox games, thereby rendering Caray all but invisible, the Cubs' television outlet, WGM had now become among the first of the cable TV superstations, offering their programming to providers across the United States for free, and now Harry was to become as famous nationwide as he'd long been on the South Side and, previously, in St. Louis

The Cubs won the NL East in 1984 and captured WGN's nationwide audience. Millions came to love the microphone-swinging Caray, continuing his White Sox practice of leading the home crowd in singing "Take Me out to the Ball Game" during the seventh inning stretch, mimicking his mannerisms, his gravelly voice, his habit of mispronouncing or slurring some players' names (which some of the players themselves mimicked in turn), and even his trademark barrel-shaped wide-rimmed glasses. Ca Nicknamed "The Mayor of Rush Street" which referenced Chicago's famous tavern-dominated neighborhood and Caray's well-known taste for Budweiser. Illness and age began to drain some of Caray's skills, even in spite of a remarkable recovery from a stroke in 1987. There were occasional calls for him to retire, but he was kept aboard past WGN's normal mandatory retirement age, an indication of just how popular he really was.

His famous 7th inning singing of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" came about almost by accident, during his tenure with the White Sox. Habitually singing the song in the broadcast booth when it played by organist Nancy Faust, Caray was doing it one afternoon when WMAQ radio producer/broadcaster Jay Scott decided to open the booth mikes on him without his realizing it. (Scott had suggested the idea in a memo some years before, but Caray had rejected the idea. He accepted it once it caught on with the home fans.) For the rest of his career, Caray enthusiastically led the song's singing during the seventh-inning stretch, using a hand-held microphone and holding it out outside the booth window. And, he inserted the home team's name for "the home team" in the song's lyric, a practice that has been copied by fans all around baseball singing the same song.

Caray had a home in Palm Springs, CA along with his legal residence in Chicago. On the day he passed away, he was at a Palm Springs restaurant, celebrating Valentine's Day with hsi wife, Dutchie, when he collapsed and was rushed to hospital in Rancho Mirace, never regaining consciousness, dying of cardiac arrest with resulting brain damage four days later.

NBA 2008 Free Throw Pct. Leaders

The following players led the NBA in Ft Pct.

1. Peja Stojakovic......NOR 92.857 130-140
2. Chauncey Billups.....DET 91.762 401-437
3. Ben Gordon...........CHI 90.785 266-293
4. Ray Allen............BOS 90.717 215-237
5. Steve Nash...........PHO 90.612 222-245
6. Caron Butler.........WAS 90.076 236-262
7. Jerry Stackhouse.....DAL 89.189 132-148
8. Derek Fisher.........LAL 88.298 166-188
9. Sam Cassell......BOS/LAC 88.194 127-144
10. Dirk Nowitzki...... DAL 87.868 478-544

Roger Clemens and other athletes pop Viagra

Sometimes, enough is enough... They just won't stop picking on Roger.

Roger Clemens, whose claims he never took steroids are under federal investigation, has apparently discovered the benefits of another performance-enhancing drug sweeping the sports world - Viagra.

Clemens stashed the clearly marked, diamond-shaped pills in a GNC vitamin bottle in his locker at Yankee Stadium according to a source familiar with the clubhouse, perhaps keeping the drug undercover to avoid the inevitable wisecracks about all the girlfriends he needed to please.

Clemens wasn't alone. The pitcher, who is believed to have scored the drug from a teammate, joined the burgeoning number of athletes who have turned Vitamin V and its over-the-counter substitutes into one of the hottest drugs in locker rooms. The drug is so widely used for off-label purposes that it has drawn the attention of anti-doping officials and law-enforcement agencies in the United States and beyond.
About the picture above: Of course, I made certain to use a Yankee picture of Roger. Did not want to use a Red Sox image from 85 when he had 'some' respectability. I found the meanest looking picture I could get.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Forbes Values of Baseball Teams


Came across this interesting and informative website. Very nice with loads of info, stats, etc. Included are Stories of the Sox, The Record Book, Red Sox jokes, Red Sox in the All Star games, Sox broadcasters, Red Sox opening day lineups.... and a lot lot more. I love it!!

RedSox Diehard

Ken Griffey Hits Number 600

Ken Griffey Jr. became the newest member of an elite club on Monday. With his two-run shot vs. the Marlins, Griffey became just the sixth player in MLB history with 600 career homers to his name. Next up? Sammy Sosa and 609.

The 38-year-old homered with Jerry Hairston on third and one out. The left-handed swinger launched a 3-1 pitch 413 feet into the right field seats. Griffey received a standing ovation from the relatively sparse crowd and responded by coming out of the Reds dugout and tipping his helmet to the fans

Controversy ensued in the stands following the home run. Justin Kimball, a 25-year-old from Miami, said he caught the home run ball, put it in a wool cap and then had the cap ripped from his hands. Kimball said someone ran off with the ball. Police said they had found the fan with the baseball and would look at video tape to see if Kimball's claims could be supported. However, the Florida Marlins announced Major League Baseball had authenticated the home run ball for a middle-aged male fan who would only give his first name as Joe.

Red Sox Stats and Standings

Boston......40-26 .606 ----
Tampa Bay...37-26 .587 1 1/2
New York....32-31 .508 6 1/2

Hitting: Pitching:
Team stats - Hitting
334 runs (2) 71 HR (2) BAVG .282 (2) OBP .357 (1) SLG .444 (2)
Team stats - Pitching
ERA 3.87 (5) SAVES 20 (4) WALKS 245 (13) SO 475 (1) BAA .243 (3)

Curt Schilling at the Celts-Lakers game

'He'd yell at someone, make a point, or send a message, turn and walk away, and more than once the person on the other end would roll eyes or give a 'whatever dude' look' said Curt in his blog.

Read more about the Celtics, Lakers, THE game, etc. on Schilling's blog 38 pitches.

Bob Cousy - first basketball autograph

I guess it was back in March 1962 while I was living in Holyoke, MA. My brother had entered a science fair which was held at the Holyoke Armory and I was there looking at the exhibits. I heard that the 'famous' Bob Cousy was in another area signing autographs and I quickly ran over and got his autograph on a program of the science fair. That was exciting for me because the Celtics were so great back then.

Antics and Problems of Jimmy Piersall - Characters of the Game

On May 24, 1952, just before the game against the NY Yankees, Piersall engaged in a fistfight with Billy Martin. Following the brawl, Piersall briefly scuffled with teammate Mickey McDermott in the Red Sox clubhouse. After several such incidents, he was sent down to the Minors to the Birmingham Barons on June 28. The final straw came when Piersall actually spanked the 4-year old son of teammate Vern Stephens in the Red Sox Clubhouse during a game.

In less than three weeks with the Barons, Piersall was ejected on four occasions, the last coming after striking out in the second inning on July 16. Prior to his at-bat, he had acknowledged teammate Milt Bollings home run by spraying a water pistol on home plate. Piersall then moved to the grandstand roof to heckle home plate umpire Neil Strocchia.

Receiving a three-day suspension, Piersall entered treatment three days later at the Westboro State Hospital in Massachusetts. Diagnosed with "nervous exhaustion," he would spend the next seven weeks in the facility and miss the remainder of the season. According to his autobiography, Piersall blamed much of his condition on his father, who pressured him to succeed as a baseball player as a small child.

Nevertheless, not only would Piersall return to baseball by the opening of the 1953 season, but he finished ninth in voting for the MVP Award. The next year he became the Red Sox's regular center fielder, taking over for Dom DiMaggio and playing well enough to remain a fixture in the starting lineup through 1958.

He once played a game in a Beatles wig, led cheers for himself in the outfield during breaks in play, and "talked" to Babe Ruth behine center field In his autobiography, Piersall commented, "Probably the best thing that ever happened to me was going nuts. Whoever heard of Jimmy Piersall, until that happened?"
Piersall was selected to the AL All-Star team team in 1954 and 1956, largely due to his outfield play, which drew favorable comparisons to Joe DiMaggio.
On December 2, 1958, he was traded to the Cleveland Indians for Vic Wertz and Gary Geiger. , Piersall was reunited with his former combatant Billy Martin, who also had been acquired by the team. In the Memorial Day doubleheader in Chicago, he was ejected in the first game for heckling umpire Larry Napp, then after catching the final out of the second game, whirled around and threw the ball at the White Sox' scoreboard. He later wore a little league helmet during an at-bat against the Detroit Tigers and after a series of incidents against the Yankees, Indians team physician Donald Kelly ordered psychiatric treatment on June 26.

After a brief absence, Piersall returned only to earn his sixth ejection of the season on July 23, when he was banished after running back and forth in the outfield while the Red Sox' Ted Williams was at bat. His subsequent meeting with American League president Joe Cronin and the departure of manager seemed to settle Piersall down for the remainder of the season.

Piersall came back during the 1961 season, earning a second Gold Glove while also finishing third in the batting race in with a .322 average. However, he remained a volatile player, charging the mound after being hit by a Jim Bunning pitch on June 25, then violently hurling his helmet a month later, earning him a $100 fine in each case.

On September 5, Piersall's 74-year-old father died of a heart attack. Two days after attending the funeral, Piersall returned to play in New York only to be the target of continued fan abuse. During the September 10 doubleheader at Yankee Stadium Piersall was accosted on the field by two fans, one of whom he punched before attempting to kick the other. Despite the minor eruptions, Piersall earned a $2,500 bonus for improved behavior, but following three hectic years in Cleveland, Piersall was dealt to the Washington Senators on October 5. His time in the nation's capital would not be long after his production declined, with the veteran outfielder then being sent to the Mets on May 23, 1963, for cash and a player to be named later.

In a reserve role with the second-year team, Piersall played briefly under manager Casey Stengel. In the fifth inning of the June 23 game against the Phillies, Piersall ran the bases while facing backward (though in the correct order) after hitting the 100th home run of his career off Phillies pitcher Dallas Green. One month after reaching the milestone, Piersall was released by the Mets, but he found employment with the Los Angeles Angels on July 28. He would finish his playing career with them, playing nearly four more years before moving into a front office position on May 8, 1967. More info in Jimmy Piersall

First autograph... Jimmy Piersall

I lived on South Street in Holyoke, MA. In 1957, there was a new shopping center across the street from us and a new 'Food Mart' had opened up. Somebody told me that Jimmy Piersall was there and I quickly ran over and got his autograph. You know, I can not recall what I had him sign though. That was 51 years ago. He played for the Red Sox from 1950 until 1958 and then 'drifted' around the majors after that.

Being a kid, I wasn't aware of his 'antics' and mental health problems. I guess back then people didn't really mention things like that to youngsters. Completely different times back then...safe to walk the streets, etc.

My Early Days as a Red Sox Fan

I was born back in 1951 in Holyoke, MA which is about 94 miles from Fenway Park. I vaguely recall going to my first games back in 1957 and I know that for two of the games, I saw the Red Sox play Kansas City and Chicago. I checked retrosheet, which lists boxscores of ALL games and I really couldn't determine which ones I first saw. They played each team 22 times back then, but I know that I went during the summertime. Back then my favorite players were Ted, Sammy White, Jackie Jenson, Frank Malzone (considered one of the top 3-4 third-baseman back then), Jimmy Piersall.

It seemed like whenever we went, we pretty much sat out there in left field (nice view of the Green Monster) and there seemed to be something like a New Hamshire Day, Connecticut day, etc. They had their 'pre-game ceremonies' which seemed to take forever for a kid 7-8 years old.

The game I remember the most? I was able to find the box score on Retrosheet, so I sure of the date, etc. I was a member of the Cub Scouts back then and on Saturday, July 11 we all went to see the Red Sox play the much-hated New York Yankees. I wasn't fully aware of the intense rivalry between these two teams yet. But there was only 24,232 people there and the Red Sox just weren't drawing the crowds they do in this era.

Starting lineups were: Yankees
RF Bauer 3B Lopez CF Mantle 1b Skowron C Berra LF Howard SS McDougald 3B Richardson P Maas

For the Red Sox:
SS Buddin CF Keough 2B Avila 1B Wertz RF Jensen LF Williams 3B Malzone C White
P Casale

So anyhow, the game was tied up 4-4 in the bottom of the 9th inning. The Sox loaded the bases and Don Buddin smacked a grand slam. The place was wild. I checked the stats from the game and Jackie Jenson went 3-5, Ted went 1-3 and Vic Wertz 2-3.

The Sox were behind 3-1 in the 8th, came up with 3 runs. Ted singled and Stephens came in to run for him and then play LF, which was typical back then because Williams was aging. Tony Kubek homered in the 9th to tie it up.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Feuding Rays

Rays starting pitcher Matt Garza and Catcher Dioner Navarro had to be separated in the dugout -- minutes after an angry confrontation on the mound -- in a 6-3 loss at Texas in which Tampa Bay missed a chance for its first series sweep on the road this season.

Celtics go up 2-0 over Lakers

The Boston Celtics won game 2 of the NBA Finals, eeking out a 108-102 victory after being up by 24 points in the 4th quarter. The Lakers caught the Celtics being content with their huge lead.

The Lakers trailed 95-71 with less than 8 minutes to go, but used a 31-9 run to pull to 104-102 on two free throws by Bryant with 38.4 seconds left. Pierce, though, made two free throws, then blocked a 3-pointer by Sasha Vujacic and James Posey made two free throws with 12.6 seconds left to ice it for Boston.

"We've got to play through the game for 48 minutes, and I didn't think we did that," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "I thought we got cute when we got the lead." As usual, Boston's Big Three -- Pierce, Ray Allen (17 points) and Kevin Garnet (17) -- were the ringleaders but Powe, a second-year reserve had the game of his career, adding his 21 points in 15 minutes that may make him a Celtics fan-favorite for life.

Powe, who played a total of 68 seconds during one stretch of 13 games during the season, scored six points to close a 15-2 run ending the third quarter that gave the Celtics a 22-point lead. The quick burst had the Lakers California dreaming. At one point in the fourth quarter, Boston fans discarded the familiar chants of "Beat L.A." for cries of "Le-on Powe!" Leon Powe came up big for the Celtics


• Boston has won 15 of its last 16 home games and eight of their last 10 games overall.

• Red Sox starter Justin Masterson improved to 3-0. He is the third Red Sox pitcher under 24 with three consecutive wins to start his career in the last 25 years.

• J.D. Drew hit his eighth homer of the season and in his last eight games, Drew is hitting .519 (14-for-27) with 10 runs, four homers and 10 RBIs.

Justin Masterful again...Drew's HR beats Mariners 2-1

Masterson pitched six strong innings and J.D. Drew hit a go-ahead homer for Boston, lifting the Red Sox to a 2-1 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Sunday. "Every time he takes the ball, the organization's got their chest out a little, as they should," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "This isn't a fluke. He's been prepared very well how to pitch, how to act and how to compete. It's exciting."

Masterson (3-0) gave up one run on three hits and struck out four for Boston, which has won 15 of its last 16 at home and eight of 10 overall. Jonathan Papelbon pitched a perfect ninth for his 18th save.

Paul Pierce expects to play

Pierce said that he will be playing tonight and let's hope for the best. Celtics need to win this one, since the format calls for 3 games in Los Angeles. If we lose tonight, then we MUST win at least one in LA. Still, do not want to come back to Boston with 3 wins for LA under their belts.

Jim McKay dies at age 86

Jim McKay, the venerable and eloquent sportscaster thrust into the role of telling Americans about the tragedy at the 1972 Munich Olympics, has died. He was 86. He died Saturday of natural causes at his farm in Monkton, Md., said son Sean McManus, president of CBS News and Sports. The broadcaster who considered horse racing his favorite sport died only hours before Big Brown attempted to win a Triple Crown at the Belmont Stakes.

He was host of the influential "ABC's Wide World of Sports" for more than 40 years, starting in 1961. The weekend series introduced viewers to all manner of strange, compelling and far-flung sports events. The show provided an international reach long before exotic backdrops became a staple of sports television.

McKay provided the famous voice-over that accompanied the opening, in which viewers were reminded of the show's mission ("Spanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sports") and what lay ahead ("the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat").
McKay -- understated, dignified and with a clear eye for detail -- covered 12 Olympics, but none more memorably than the Summer Games in Munich, Germany. He was the anchor when events turned grim with the news that Palestinian terrorists had kidnapped 11 Israeli athletes.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Red Sox sink Mariners 11-3

Tim Wakefield's knuckleball danced all over the place as he went 7 innings allowing 5 hits and 2 runs with 6 strikeouts and 2 walks. It looked like a backyard game of catch, with Wakefield getting the ball and pitching quickly. One knuckler to Kenji Johnson in the second inning was clocked at 56 mph.

"I've always been the type that likes to keep the game going," Wakefield said. "I slow the game and make adjustments. Obviously, I didn't need to today, so I just wanted to get the ball and keep throwing." Boston rebounded from Friday's 8-0 loss to Seattle for its seventh victory in nine games; and 16th of 18 at Fenway Park.

Ramirez tied Eddie Murray for 23rd on the career list with a two-run drive over the Green Monster seats. J.D. Drew continued his hot-hitting as he homered, tripled and singled. One thing did go wrong for the Red Sox, Kevin Youkilis dropped a throw in the ninth, ending his major league-record 238-game errorless streak at first. He started the game at third, but moved over in the eighth.