Saturday, April 30, 2005
Our Doug, who played at Natick High and then won the Heisman Trophy while at Boston College in 1984, has returned to New England.
``I don't know if I'm going to be a No. 2 or a No. 3 (quarterback on the depth chart). In fact, my biggest contribution here might not take place on the field. It could happen in the classroom. Hopefully I can be a sounding board for Tom and a security blanket for the team.''
This is a great move by the Patriots. Flutie will not be a distraction at this stage of his career, and provides a legitimate backup, ball control quarterback that can fill in capably for Tom Brady for a few series or a few games if necessary. Rohan Davey has failed to show that he has the accuracy and poise to handle the #2 position. Nice to see Doug back home with the Patriots. -NF
Friday, April 29, 2005
But really, what did you expect? The Red Sox made some cost-efficient decisions over the winter, which is a nice way of saying they took the cheap way out. And now they have three starters on the disabled list - Wells, Schilling and Wade Miller [stats, news] - and there is legitimate reason to wonder just how good any of them will be if and when they return. "
Red Sox should never have gone into the season with 4-5 key free agents. This was a recipe for disaster; we hear that the Red Sox may be changing their logo to a Red Cross. -NF
If David Stern follows precedent,
Antoine Walker Will be Sitting Down For Crucial Game 4.
O'NEAL JAKES WALKER OUT OF THE GAME-THROWS ELBOWS AT WEST-YET ONLY WALKER GETS BOOTED
WALKER IS AT RISK FOR SUSPENSION,
AS HE INADVERTENTLY RUNS OVER ONE ZEBRA WHEN "T" CALLED BY ANOTHER ZEBRA.
TOMMY LOSES POINTS TONIGHT ALONG WITH HIS OBJECTIVITY
"Walker was ejected with two technical fouls, both after hard personals on O'Neal. The second time, with just over four minutes to go, O'Neal also received a technical for shoving Walker, but stayed in the game and hit two more free throws for an 88-65 lead.
'Things happen, people say things,' O'Neal said. 'I don't take anything personally. You're going to do things that sometimes don't sit well with other people. It's part of the game.'"
Thursday, April 28, 2005
THE HUB SPOTLIGHTS: THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS DRAFT PICKS
The Patriots' Drafted based upon need in 2005:
Round 1/32 -- Logan Mankins, OL, 6-4, 307, Fresno State
The Patriots look for position flexibility and found it in an offensive line prospect they may have taken too high, but one that fits what they were looking for up front. He will compete for playing time immediately at left guard or right tackle while providing much needed depth at left tackle, where he played in college.
Round 3/84 -- Ellis Hobbs III, CB, 5-9, 186, Iowa State
Needing more depth at corner, the Pats went with an intelligent, undersized corner who plays with solid instincts and ball skills. He will compete for time in the nickel and dime packages. He improved annually for Iowa State and has upside as a third rounder despite being a smaller corner who could have trouble with big receivers. Look for him to work in the slot for New England.
Round 3/100 -- Nick Kaczur, T, 6-5, 319, Toledo
A solid line prospect, Kaczur needs to work on his strength, but sustains blocks well, can drive defenders off the ball and has good quickness. He needs technique work, but may have the ability to play guard. He won't likely play much in 2005, but the Pats have the luxury to let him develop. His first season will be a redshirt-type year.
Round 4/133 -- James Sanders, SS, 5-11, 214, Fresno State
New England needs a young strong safety to learn behind aging veteran Rodney Harrison and may have landed their future starter in the fourth round with a player who is consistent and has good speed and tackling skills, but needs seasoning and refinement playing near the line of scrimmage. He'll get it in New England's secondary while he plays special teams. This was a good pick.
Round 5/170 -- Ryan Claridge, OLB, 6-2, 254, UNLV
NFLdraftscout.com labels Claridge as a natural leader who wants to coach when his playing days are over. He can play inside in the Pats 3-4 defense or rush the passer from the outside. He needs to get stronger and improve his technique, but he's aggressive and agile and not afraid to play in traffic. He's had injury problems but has shown the toughness to play through them.
Round 7/230 -- Matt Cassell, QB, 6-4, 222, USC
A backup at USC, Cassell had a strong workout in the spring in which he showed good velocity and accuracy on his throws. He will start camp fourth on the Patriots depth chart behind Tom Brady, Rohan Davey and Chris Redman, the latter two of whom are scheduled to be free agents after the 2005 season.
Round 7/255 - Andrew Stokes, TE, 6-4, 253, William Penn
Stokes has good hands and runs good routes, but is a long-shot prospect that will have a hard time making the roster. He is quick, but needs some bulk on his frame.
(Thanks PatriotsInsider.com) http://patriots.scout.com/2/374655.html
Next Time: The Hub will review recent Patriots draft history. -NF
Sweet lou Piniella and his fella
Originally uploaded by nomarfan2004.
I'M SO PRETTY
SWEET LOU MAKES HIMSELF ALL PRETTY FOR HIS DATE WITH CURT SCHILLING...
"I Left him a message; I hope he calls," said a visibly upset Piniella.
INJURIES TO DAVID WELLS AND CURT SCHILLING A BLESSING IN DISGUISE. A VIEW FROM THE "HALF FULL GUY."
As Red Sox Nation watched Pedro Martinez and Derek Lowe saunter off to other cities this offseason, the Front office sold us on a different approach; The depth of the new Red Sox rotation and, staff overall, had the potential to make the 2005 Red Sox even better than the 2004 World Championship version. Most of the Nation was buying...or maybe they were still just buzzing over the improbable dream ending to the 2004 season.
We will now find out the hard way if Theo and the trio were forthright, or if they simply saved some cash and sold us a bill of goods. Or maybe, once again, their instincts and statistics would defy baseball convention. After all, the Nomar deal had worked out better than even Theo Epstein could have possibly imagined. Maybe depth and payroll flexibility would make the pitching better too, much as it had the offense and defense in 2004. Perhaps, Clement and/or Arroyo will step up big time over the next month or so, and the Sox will have developed a much needed #3 stud for the post season. If they can pull this one off, then it will be time to raise these guys to Belichick/Pioli status in New England. One time can be brushed aside as one part skill and 2 parts luck. Twice in two years, especially with a baseball team that hadn't won in 86 years, can't possibly be a fluke.
As long as Boomer and Schilling are healthy by June and beyond, the Sox will win at least a wild card, and will wind up better off than the Spankees in terms of playoff pitching. Believe it or not, these injuries may actually be a good thing, as the Sox could wind up with a newly confident #3 and two well rested, proven post season arms. -NF
The Troy Brown situation could resolve itself within a week, according to word from Brown's camp. While Brown's representatives would not offer specifics as per their client's request, they expect a resolution on his status with the Patriots soon. Coach Bill Belichick said last week that he has spoken with Brown this offseason and that it was "possible'' the Pats would bring him back. It appears that Brown, who was released just prior to the free agency period, is looking for a firmer answer. -- Boston Herald
The Steelers want to sign veteran linebacker Chad Brown, and he said he wants to play for them in the worst way, but there remains one small matter standing between them: A contract. -- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
With Pittsburgh, Denver and New England in the mix, the Packers appear no longer interested in free agent linebacker Chad Brown. -- Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
The Cubs announced the surgery to repair groin tissues on Nomar Garciaparra was successful. Cubs trainer Mark O'Neal denied a radio report that the recovery from the injury would take six months or longer. No timetable has been set, but the Cubs expect Garciaparra to be ready to begin playing by August.-- Chicago Tribune
David Wells' "right foot sprain," in actuality, is a sprain of the plantar fascia ligament on the bottom of his foot. General manager Theo Epstein confirmed as much yesterday, two days after Wells left a game against Baltimore after 3 2/3 innings. -- Boston Globe
Crawford Comes To Lou's Defense : "Piniella was so upset after learning of Schilling's remarks Tuesday afternoon on Boston radio station WEEI, he had a late- night talk with OF Carl Crawford at the team hotel after the Rays' 7-5 loss to Toronto.
``I haven't heard anybody on the team even come close to saying anything like that,'' Crawford said Wednesday. ``I think Schilling is just talking trash to stir things up. Nobody questions what Lou does around here, at least not in front of me.
``I told Lou, `I don't think anybody on the team said that. I think he is just trying to get under your skin.' ''
Still upset Wednesday, Piniella called a team meeting before the Rays' 8-2 loss against the Blue Jays. He also issued a statement in response to Schilling's remarks, which Piniella described as a ``personal attack on my character and integrity.'' "
"Reliever Trever Miller said Schilling was the one doing the trash-talking on the field during the two bench-clearing incidents.
'You couldn't hear anybody else over Schilling,' Miller said. 'He was berating our manager, our ownership, all the way to our waterboys. He was kind of contradicting himself yelling at us and telling us how to play the game when he's going out there stirring the pot and being immature about it. So I find that ironic and pretty sad, especially for a guy that has all that time in the game.''
During the Pax broadcast of Sunday's bench-clearing incident, when he said it was "shocking" that Schilling was "running his mouth again," and that Schilling was "too old for this" and that he "threw his walker down and tried to make his way out there." ESPN included Magrane's analysis in its highlights Sunday night and Monday.
"He's an idiot. He's a frickin' idiot. The funny part about that is a guy whose career is over at 24-25 (actually 57-67). He was a sub-.500 pitcher ... but getting on my health when he was done at 25 (actually 31) and I had my best years after I was 34, I mean there's kind of an irony there I guess, I don't know," Schilling said.
"But, you know, Joe Magrane (was a) tool when he played, and he is now. I mean, he's the kind of guy when you're in the clubhouse and the game's on, you turn the sound down. It's tiring to listen to, and it's the same way when he played. But you expect that from people like Joe. That's how he was when he played. He was an idiot."
"Piniella later said he had Tampa Bay's traveling secretary call Boston's traveling secretary to try to contact Schilling. Piniella said last night, before the Devil Rays played at Toronto, that he had yet to hear from Schilling.
'I was told Curt was going to call,' he said. 'I'll be happy to pick up the phone if that's what it takes.'"
'The problem is when you're playing a team with a manager who somehow forgot how the game is played, there's problems,' he said. 'This should have been over a little bit ago.'
Schilling also said the Devil Rays players agreed with him.
'Lou's trying to make his team be a bunch of tough guys,' he said, 'and the telling sign is when the players on that team are saying, 'This is why we lose 100 games a year, because this idiot makes us do stuff like this.' [The Rays' players] said that on the field.'
When asked for comment by the Florida media after Tuesday's game in Toronto, Piniella shot back at Schilling.
'I think he should just concern himself with pitching and forget making comments about anybody else. I think he'd be better served,' Piniella said. 'I don't think I've forgotten how to play the game. I know exactly how the game should be played, and why. Quite frankly, I'm disappointed in his comments, very disappointed in his comments.'
Pineilla also disputed Schilling's claim that Tampa Bay's players agreed with him.
'Go talk to the players,' Piniella said. 'I don't think they'd say that. I know you wouldn't get one to say that.'
Schilling ripped Magrane as a person and as a pitcher on D&C...
During the television broadcast, Magrane -- a former major-league pitcher -- joked that Schiling was 'too old' to be involved in the fight and that 'he must have thrown down his walker to get out there.' Schilling was angered by the remarks, and ripped both Piniella and Magrane."
"And while the party line is that Wells' injury is not a stress fracture, the Sox admitted he has been treated for plantar fascitis already at times this season. The bottom line is the foot will be immobilized for at least three weeks. "
Does it come out of the blue that 41-year-old David Wells' body has betrayed him yet again, forcing him to the DL for the fifth time in his 18-year career, this time for what general manager Theo Epstein called a "sprained plantar fascia?"
Is it a coincidence that these are two pitchers for whom conditioning (read: weight) is an issue, no doubt contributing to extra stress on the feet/ankles?
Wednesday, April 27, 2005
"Detroit didn't have a pick in the fifth round, so it traded next season's fourth-round pick to the New England Patriots in exchange for the latter's fifth-round selection in this year's draft and next season's fifth- and sixth-round picks."
This guy is a nice sleeper pick who has been underrated from high school on up...He lifted a 1AA football program into winners versus 1A/Big East competition the past couple of seasons. Could he be the next...uh-hum...Tom Brady? Alumni S-T-R-E-T-C-H... Look for him to be an NFL starter in the next few years. -NF
Huskies' Krug Will Get His Next Chance With Pats
Tri-captain Is One Of Four UConn Players Set To Sign NFL Free-agent Contracts
This guy has the smarts and toughness that it takes to be an OL in the NFL. Look for Krug to stick with the Patriots at a need position. -NF
Don't mean to say "We told you so." Really, we're not enjoying this either. This guy just doesn't have the makeup or control to pitch in the Boston market. In the end, his stats will be those of a respectible #3 starter. Just don't count on him to be a stopper, or win the big game. He is what he is; a guy with all the negative aspects of a D. Lowe psyche, without the the positives that led to big game performances. Now that he is the Defacto #1 starter, at least for a few weeks, lets hope that he can discover a part of himself that he has yet to display in his major league career, focus, harness his nasty stuff, and rise to the occasion. Suddenly, the season may depend on it. -NF
"When you're playing a team with a manager who somehow forgot how the game is played, there's problems. Lou's trying to make his team be a bunch of tough guys, and the telling sign is when the players on that team are saying, `This is why we lose a hundred games a year, because this idiot makes us do stuff like this.' They were saying this on the field." -Schilling on WEEI
Piniella responded "I think he should just concern himself with pitching and not worry about what other managers do or don't do. Go talk to the players. I don't think they'd say that. I know you wouldn't get one to say that." -Sweet Lou responds to Schilling's comments.
Now that he's (Schilling) hurt, he'll have even more time to give interviews. Schilling should worry about his own team. He's a jerk.
-ESPN Radio The Herd today.
Ricky Davis and Curt Schilling are B.F.A.M. (Brothers from another mother). Apparently, they learned to trash talk before they learned to walk. Ricky is talented, but has yet to win anything...SHUT UP!!!
Schill has won, and is justified if he wants to talk about what it takes to win, but talks out of both sides of his mouth on a regular basis about everything from politics to Devil Rays clubhouse chemistry...See (paraphrased) Schilling's comments on Lenny Dykstra: "I don't believe that's in his makeup...I don't believe he did steroids...He didn't come back bigger than a lot of guys (in 1993).
Hey Curt, your mouth is already in great shape; the rest of your body could use some spin classes. Too bad the bruise isn't on your mouth, so that you could just shut up and do what he does best: Lead the Sox to victory.-NF
Red Sox starters didn't miss a start last season. This year's rotation is older and less talented; As should be expected, age and the odds are now catching up with the Boston Red Sox rotation. -NF
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
1-ON-ONE PLAY RESULTS IN 1-1 SERIES
THE CELTICS RESORTED TO BAD OLD HABITS, STANDING AROUND AND SETTLING FOR OUTSIDE SHOTS INSTEAD OF APPLYING FURTHER PRESSURE BY TAKING IT TO A FOUL TROUBLED PACER TEAM.
When I was young,
I never needed anyone.
And making 3's was just for fun...
Celtics need to steal one of the next two in Indy to have a shot at this series.
Davis was both puzzled and bothered by a published report that claims he chanted ``Sweep'' from the bench near the end of Game 1.
Last night, he denied handing that kind of bait to the Pacers.
``I didn't say nothing like that - I definitely wouldn't want to give the Pacers that kind of material,'' he said, before adding later, ``I wanna know what it is I said. I heard I talked about a sweep, but I didn't.''
RICKY PLEASE LOSE THAT MOUTH. -NF
Monday, April 25, 2005
NEW ENGLAND - The Patriots refused to reach for help at linebacker or in the secondary, instead choosing some versatile offensive linemen with size who will help shore up an area that has been somewhat suspect despite the team's recent remarkable successes. Both No. 1 pick Logan Mankins and third-round choice Nick Kaczur have great size and are known to be extremely aggressive and competitive. Both can play either guard or tackle. Mankins played left tackle in college but guard at the Senior Bowl and had no problems with the transition. Kaczur was considered perhaps the best player in the Mid-American Conference last season and also has shown ability to play an interior position or step out to tackle. Sandwiched between them was cornerback Ellis Hobbs III, who like the linemen is considered a versatile guy with return skills as well as the ability to cover."
Sunday, April 24, 2005
In an essay published this winter - in something called The Baseball Research Journal, a Jamesian outlet if ever there was one - he argued that clutch hitters might indeed walk the earth. Not only that, but he also proceeded to challenge a handful of other numbers-based doctrines, including the belief that hot and cold streaks do not exist."
WHO'S DOWN WITH OBP??
Teahen was another beneficiary of the Oakland experiment -- another player dismissed by scouts for his lack of power to whom the A's had given a better chance. The reason the scouting journal Baseball America listed him a lowly 134th on its 2002 list of the best college players was the same reason it ignored Steve Stanley: Teahen didn't hit home runs. Like Steve Stanley, he hit lefty. Like Stanley, he preferred pitches on the outside half of the plate, out of a hitter's natural power zone -- but in the place where he could hit the ball the other way and beat out base hits. And like Stanley, his chief contribution to a baseball offense was his ability to get on base. The difference was that, unlike Stanley, Teahen had no obvious alibi: he was a big kid who played a position, third base, expected to generate home runs. And yet here he was, hitting .412 his junior year with a mere six home runs. ''My college coach sat me down early in my junior season,'' Teahen says, ''and told me that if I wanted to get drafted high I had to hit more home runs.
HUB PREDICTION: THE CELTICS HAVE THE VETERAN POISE TO MAKE SOME NOISE IN THE PLAYOFFS. THEY WILL BEAT THE PACERS IN 5 GAMES AND TAKE THEIR ROUND 2 OPPONENT (DETROIT?) TO THE BRINK...AND MAYBE OVER.
A REJUVINATED ANTOINE WALKER ONCE AGAIN SACRIFICED HIS STAT LINE...AND HIS FACE...IN THE NAME OF TEAM.
Saturday, April 23, 2005
"'Without question, that's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard,' Garciaparra said. 'It's right up there with me saying I didn't want my [World Series championship] ring, or that I faked my injuries last year.' "
C.H. MARY OTTI THROWS NOMAR UNDER THE BUS IN CHITOWN.
BOB "MULLIGAN" RYAN TAKES THE EASY SHOT IN BOSTON. Maybe Joumana Kidd should slap him. -NF
Friday, April 22, 2005
Unlike some of the delicate geniuses in the Boston media, I can't say for sure who did and didn't take steroids, but I can conclusively say this:Players take these drugs for the benefits such as recovery from fatigue and injury as much, if not more than, for added power. If you simply focus on who "looks like they are on the juice", then you are no better than some of the frauds, like CHB and Bob "Mulligan" Ryan, that are in the habit of penning a little "creative speculation without documentation," for their own fanfare.
Once again, I will briefly review what we actually do know about Olde #5 and his injuries, acknowledging that, without a smoking gun, I will always give the players the benefit of the doubt:
Nomar acknowledged that he has taken supplements, including Creatine, which is notorious for causing muscle cramps, pulls, and subsequently tear problems. If a player took Androstenedione(completely legal when Nomar had his best years and in '98 when McGwire made it famous, then essentially the player was on a legal steroid. Andro is a precurser to steroids, which means that it indirectly increases the amount of testosterone available. Ask your local doctor or pharmacist about how these drugs work in the body; the result of using Andro. is likely the same as injecting steroids directly.
OTC supplements that are made out of the U.S.A. were, and sometimes still are, readily tainted with steroids.
Nomar is a workout and diet fanatic (ala Gabe Kapler). This is well documented. He gained muscle mass consistently over 3-4 seasons before changing his workout routine, following the wrist injury, to more of a flexibility program and less weight training. This is also well documented by players that have joined him in the same Arizona strength program.
So, there are many plausible explanations for Nomar's current Bambino-Billy Goat curse; Guys from top to bottom feeder, Gammons to Mo Vaughn to Canseco, have said that steroids don't fit the Garciaprofile. Unless otherwise named in an FBI investigation or some other PROOF source that leaves us beyond a reasonable doubt, we should recognize Nomar and all other players as innocent until proven guilty. Now as for Balco Barry Bonds...
"1876: In the first National League game, Joseph Borden of Boston beat the hometown Philadelphia team 6-5." -NF
Clement got ahead of the hitters last night and pitched a gem. He got stellar support from new shortstop Edgar Renteria...
Timlin, a member of The Angel Fund family, will also present awards to individual students who will be recognized as top fundraisers."
Time to cover some positive news about a player that is a true role model. -NF
Thursday, April 21, 2005
"I am still in trick-or-treating mode, blissfully gorging on any pro-Sox memory dropped in my cranial bag. In that spirit, I recently digested two of the too-numerous-to-count new Sox books: Johnny Damon's "Idiot: Beating the Curse and Enjoying the Game of Life" and Bill Lee's "Have Glove Will Travel: Adventures of a Baseball Vagabond."
Groin muscle is torn away from the bone; surgery could be in store for Ex-Sox Star.
Baker gave him Monday off but Nomar went 0-for-5 Tuesday. Garciaparra then volunteered to vacate his No. 3 spot in the order: "I said, 'If you switch me, it's not like you're gonna hurt my feelings. I wanna win here. If you feel you have to do that, it doesn't bother me. Don't make the decision based on how I'm gonna take it."'
CHICAGO PAPERS CALLING NOMAR AND WALKER "DOUBLY-CURSED." HE IS NOW ON THE DL, AND IT IS A GOOD POSSIBILITY THAT HE WILL MISS THE RED SOX-CUBS SERIES IN JUNE. -NF
Nomah falls to .157 and the ground; hits rock bottom.
"The only other team projected to owe a tax are your World Series champion Boston Red Sox, who would pay $969,177."
Boston's Payroll:$131.2 million
In the adjusted 2004 luxury tax payroll figures, the Yankees led at $207 million, followed by the Red Sox at $134.5 million and the Angels at $124.7 million.
Last season, Boston paid $3,148,962.
John Henry has vowed to phase out paying any luxury tax; The Sox reduced both payroll and this tax from 2004 levels. Not a bad price for a World Series Championship. -NF
NOMAR GETS A MOST UNCOMFORTABLE HAND
When he was kicked out unceremoniously, he cursed the Cubs, saying that they'd never win the pennant again until a billygoat sat in Wrigley Field....and for 50+ years, they have not. (billygoat.org)
INJURY STRIKES SELFLESS GARCIAPARRA
"ST. LOUIS -- This one goes under the truly unfortunate heading of 'no good deed goes unpunished.'
So Nomar Garciaparra, hitting .163, gets word to Chicago Cubs manager Dusty Baker that he will voluntarily drop down in the batting order, because he isn't helping the team batting .163 while hitting third.
This is a good thing, a selfless thing. This is the kind of thing that became an issue with the Cubs last season when Sammy Sosa did not take particularly well to his own demotion in the order. But Garciaparra removes all elements of controversy by not only accepting, but in a way, initiating his own demotion in the order.
Baker puts Garciaparra sixth in the Cubs lineup Wednesday night. Everybody understands that this is temporary. The record says that Garciaparra will not only get straightened out, he might very well hit roughly twice as much as .163. His gesture of offering to hit lower in the order is both understood and appreciated.
'That was big of him to say and do that,' Baker said. 'That's when you find out about a person, when they're going bad. It's easy to be a team guy when you're going good. When you're going bad, that's when you find out who a person is. He's a hell of a dude.'
So for a moment there, life is good for the Cubs. One of the biggest names on the team has acted unselfishly for the collective good. "
Hasn't the poor man suffered enough already?
There was a time when baseball came very easily to the handsome shortstop with five vowels in his name and two batting titles before his 28th birthday. But for anyone who has been paying attention over the last three seasons, that crumpled mass lying 10 feet up the first-base line at Busch Stadium had a familiar look to it.
When something can go wrong for Garciaparra these days, it somehow manages to go even worse. He has the sadiM touch - that's Midas in reverse.
Wednesday, April 20, 2005
Taylor: I don't actual believe in the curse but I believe in the belief of the curse. There's no question about it that we came unglued so many times with the Yankees. Our level of play went way down in our concentration. We were rattled. The fans, too. They behaved really badly when the Yankees were in the park. It just generations of frustration and trying to get beyond it. It's a different world now to have finally done it. So I don't believe there is some gypsy mechanism at work but definitely some kind of a psychic landscape, like a mountain, that we had to cross."
Tuesday, April 19, 2005
In addition, the club put in a unique clause that will allow them to pick up an option for Wakefield in 2007 and any season thereafter. "
Kudos to Theo and the rest of the front office for getting another of their own players to take the Old Towne discount. As a knuckler, Wakefield is not consistent enough to be a top tier starter, so although he took less money to stay, the deal makes sense for him too. -NF
Monday, April 18, 2005
Like most of the castles featured on ''Cribs,' Johnny Damon's Orlando, Fla., estate is overkill, and the place looks about as lived in as a hotel room. (What's in the fridge? Barely anything except Sam Adams.) But for a good glimpse of Damon's off-season digs, fans of the Sox center fielder will want to tune in to Tuesday's episode of MTV's celebrity home show. Damon has a small fleet of vehicles, of course, but to his credit, he does not own an Escalade or a Hummer. (Raking in $8.5 million this year, Johnny certainly could swing an extravagant ride but opts instead for a '71 Ford Bronco, a '99 Porsche Cabrera convertible, and a motorcycle.) Inside the sprawling stone manse, Damon and wife Michelle Mangan show off a clothes closet that may be bigger than their apartment at the Ritz-Carlton and a screening room with eight leather recliners. Admiring the four-poster bed that dominates the couple's bedroom, Mangan says to her hirsute hubby, ''If I'm bad, you can tie me to it.' Hmm. Finally, Damon introduces us to his adorable twins, Madelyn and Jackson, and the whole family walks out to the boat docked on a private lake. As the pleasure craft sputters away from shore, Damon yells, ''Sox rule!'"
Sunday, April 17, 2005
HUB PREDICTION: HANLEY WILL NOT BE TRADED. THIS FUTURE ALL STAR WILL REMAIN IN THE INFIELD AND TAKE OVER EITHER 2B OR 3B IN 2006.
Saturday, April 16, 2005
Sort of like the Yankees losing three straight and five of six to fall to 4-7, their worst record after 11 games since an identical start in 1991.
Yankees should renovate "The House That Ruth Built" retro to 1927 (plus luxury boxes). Currently, the Yankee Stadium sign lights up with a color that matches A-Rod's blue lips. Tearing down the big guy's house can't be good for Karma. The curse has officially landed on the Yankees.
Friday, April 15, 2005
Prime time games include 9/8 (Raiders), 10/30 (Bills), 11/7 (Colts), 12/26 (Jets).
"BOSTON - The New York Yankees got into another scuffle with fans on a testy night at Fenway Park. This time, Gary Sheffield was in the middle of it.
Sheffield was fielding Jason Varitek's two-run triple along the right-field fence in the eighth inning of Boston's 8-5 victory Thursday night when a fan swung a short uppercut in his direction, appearing to graze the side of the slugger's face with his right arm.
I just felt something hit me in the mouth, Sheffield said. "I don't know if he hit me or not, it felt like it. I thought my lip was busted.
After Sheffield picked up the ball, he shoved the fan before throwing the ball back to the infield as two runs scored. Another fan's beer sprayed in Sheffield's direction.
Sheffield then whirled around with a cocked fist, shouting in the face of the first man, but did not throw a punch. A security official quickly jumped over the three-foot wall to separate the two.
"It could have been worse if I didn't hold my composure," Sheffield said. "I almost snapped, but the thing is I thought about the consequences."
Why don't you throw some more balls away on purpose, like you admitted you did as a Brewers third baseman, instead of punches, "Growth Hormone Gary." I guess your shoulder is okay to push fans with. To quote the CHB, this guy is a "piece of garbage." -NF
AND THEN THERE'S SHEFF...WHO CAN'T GO OVER EASY AND GETS A FAN TOSSED...
DUE TO A LACK OF PHOTO ANGLES OF THE RIGHT FIELD CORNER, WE HAD TO GO TO THE VIDEO TAPE...SORRY, MRS. SHEFF... -NF
Thursday, April 14, 2005
Rodriguez risked his life Wednesday to save an 8-year-old boy from getting hit by a fast-moving truck on Newbury Street, the boy's father, Joe McCarthy, said last night. As fate would have it, the boy, Patrick, is a diehard Yankees fan living in Red Sox Nation.
'I can't express enough gratitude,' Joe McCarthy said. 'He saved my son's life.'
Rodriguez said he was about to enter a car when he noticed a truck heading in his direction and quickly decided to step back to protect himself. When he turned around, he saw young Patrick running into the street and directly toward the utility truck. A-Rod said he acted instinctivelyduring the lunchtime incident, grabbing the boy and pulling him back with him."
"It was just unbelievable, truly a God moment," Joe McCarthy said from his Martha's Vineyard home. "A-Rod could have been seriously hurt, but that didn't stop him. It was the best catch of his career."
Maybe A-Rod really can make the big play when it counts. His first instinct showed a lot of character. Talk about internal conflictions...This really makes it tough to dislike the guy. -NF
Mets are desperate for pen help; Could the 7 train be his next destination??
Rocker's age and IQ are a surprisingly low 30.
Rocker last pitched for the Devil Rays in 2003.
In parts of six major league seasons, Rocker went 12-22 with 88 saves and a 3.42 ERA. His best season came in 1999, when he went 4-5 with a 2.49 ERA and 38 saves for the NL champion Braves.
He hopes to pitch good enough for the Ducks that he's signed by a major league team -- possibly even the Mets -- within six weeks of the season opener on April 28.
"Whoever wants to give me a jersey and sign my check, I'll play for," Rocker said. "I don't care who it is."
On a day when the Patriots were honored at the White House quarterback Tom Brady expressed some concern about a new contract. "I'd love to be here for the rest of my career, but it's not entirely my decision," said Brady, who was the most valuable player of New England's first two Super Bowl wins and guided the team to its third title in four years last February.
-- Boston Globe
The Patriots are set to visit with free-agent middle linebacker Chris Draft at Gillette Stadium later this week, an indication the Patriots are still considering adding personnel to their middle linebacker corps, even after agreeing to terms on a two-year deal with free-agent Monty Beisel last Thursday. A 1998 sixth-round draft choice of the Bears, Draft spent one season in Chicago (1 game), one in San Francisco (7 games) and the last five with the Falcons (79 games, 52 starts).
-- Metro West Daily News
Content summary, SI
Fruit Bat collects 5-2 mind easing save versus cold Dead Sox.
Sox fans "cheer" Rivera once again...when he went out to the pen in the 8th inning...and even louder when he entered the game for a cheap 3-run save in the ninth.
Womack robbed Bellhorn to lead off the ninth...a screaming liner that could have opened up another can of worms for the Fruit Bat...a huge sigh of relief could be heard on the mound and in the Yankee dugout.
Giambi showed a quick bat tonight...His 2-run shot deep to RF off of Schill should restore some confidence. -NF
Giambi collects HR #1 of the 2005 season; It was Curt-ains for Schilling on this night.
Wednesday, April 13, 2005
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
He did not preen nor prance nor rag on opposing players. He was the perfect professional. He was more than a blip on major-league baseball's 128-year history.
Sad is what the current reigning world-champion Red Sox have become. A blip on history. A team lacking dignity and honor, a team of overflowing egos, a team of classless athletes who have shamed their classy Boston baseball uniforms with their behavior"
The rest of the country does see us through green colored glasses...but it is time to tone it down and move on to defending the title. Professionals such as Edgar Renteria and Matt Clement should help that cause. -NF