Learned a new term during a family trip out to see the in-laws: the obli-cation. This cannot help but make one wonder: whatever happened to the island getaway?
Catching up on the news and trying to make up for lost time …
- Departed on Aug. 12, when the Red Sox were five games back in the division and 3 1/2 games back in the wild-card race. Returned on August 20 to find the Red Sox 6 1/2 games back in the division and five games behind in the wild card. This is hardly what one would call progress.
- Josh Beckett may be unmovable in the wake of a four-year, $68 million contract extension that begins next season, but now is the time if the Red Sox ever have any intention of exploring a trade for him. Beckett will become a dreaded 10-5 man late next season – at least 10 years of major league service, at least the last five with the same team - which means he will have the right to veto any and all deals from that point forward.
- The more you think about it, the more you cannot help but feel that the Red Sox season ended on that June weekend in San Francisco when Dustin Pedroia fouled a ball off his foot.
- By the way, Bill Hall now has more home runs than J.D. Drew.
- Amid all of the unending discussion about Jacoby Ellsbury now that he has returned to the disabled list, just how are the Red Sox going to get equal value for him following a season in which Ellsbury has played in 18 games and had his attitude openly questioned?
- As for Jed Lowrie, on the other hand, now seems like a golden opportunity to strike while the iron is hot and sell high.
- With regard to Roger Clemens, here’s the part that just won’t go away: does Clemens really think he’s pulling the wool over anybody’s eyes? As one longtime baseball executive noted, the Texas courts don’t believe him; the media doesn’t believe him; the government doesn’t believe him; and the public doesn’t believe him.
- Since we’re on the topic of chronic liars and general disingenuousness, now might be a good time to wonder whether Brett Favre and Roger Clemens have ever actually met, or, for that matter, exchanged recipes. You know, from one southern boy to another.
- Which reminds me: Favre emphasizing commitment to the team in any meetings is like Tiger Woods preaching fidelity.
- So would you take Tiger on the Ryder Cup team?
- Let’s not get too excited about the Patriots just yet. In any professional sport, the preseason is utterly worthless when it comes to handicapping the field. The good news is that the Patriots appear to be emphasizing a return to basics and that the very early signs are good with regard to some of their most recent draft picks. At this stage, we’re just looking for progress.
- Is anyone else completely unsurprised by the fact that Stephen Strasburg is ailing? Take a good look at those rookie pitchers with whom Strasburg compares with regard to strikeouts per nine innings. The majority of them flamed out.
- Just for kicks, let’s review some of the players the Red Sox have picked up during this season: Jonathan Van Every, Niuman Romero, Kevin Cash, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Ryan Shealy, Eric Patterson, Rich Hill, Argenis Reyes, Jack Hannahan, Daniel Turpen and Carlos Delgado.
- By the way, Kerry Wood, who cost the Yankees nothing but a little cash, now has a 0.84 ERA with New York and has racked up seven straight scoreless appearances.
- Don’t look now, but the start of Bruins training camp is rapidly approaching. Salary cap issues aside, the Bruins should keep Marc Savard and Tim Thomas, then roll out the pucks.
- If the Celtics hadn’t made that run to the NBA Finals, does anyone else think we’d be talking about Doc Rivers right now the way we’re talking about Lou Piniella?
- On the flipside: do you think Piniella would have skipped out if the Cubs were in contention?
We think not.
In the baseball world, this is known as an 0-fer.
Does that sound like a management group that is serious about contending, particularly given a history that has included some absolute blockbuster, midseason deals?
Tony's Top 5
Best offseason moves in recent Red Sox history