Ten free minutes for me, 10 free throwaway lines for you . . .
1. CNNSI's Jon Heyman speculates today that the Red Sox will consider pursuing Marco Scutaro in the offseason. All things considered, I'd rather have Gonzo back, even at his $6 million rate. At least you'd know what you were getting -- a graceful defender who occasionally surprises you at the plate. Scutaro has had the definition of a career year at age 35, batting .283 with 11 homers and 92 runs scored. But he's never had a career adjusted OPS higher than 96 until this year. (He's at 110 right now.) I have a feeling that if the Sox signed him, he'd sooner rather than later end up as more evidence that Theo has a fundamental flaw in identifying useful shortstops.
2. I've never seen a football player turn pure passion into overachieving performance quite the way Tedy Bruschi did. We're not underestimating his talent here, because it was vast, but more than anything else it was his uncommon and unrelenting desire for his profession that allowed him to go from a pass rushing defensive end in college to one of the most versatile and dependable big-play linebackers of his era. Kudos to Bruschi for knowing it was time for him to go, and for leaving so many wonderful memories behind.
3. Quick Pats predictions: Preseason All-Star BenJarvus Green-Ellis makes it as the fifth running back, Terrence Nunn gets cut and claimed before Belichick can stash him on the practice squad, Brandon McGowan makes it because of Matthew Slater's injury, A.J. Feeley is acquired before the end of the weekend for a mid-round pick, and Ben Watson beats out Alex Smith for the backup tight end job.
4. Joe Mauer is the American League Most Valuable Player, Zack Greinke deserves the Cy Young Award, and if you think otherwise, you're either from New York and/or have forgotten the Royals exist.
5. If Josh McDaniels decides the Brandon Marshall headache isn't worth it, here's hoping he does his former employer a favor and deals the childish wide receiver to the Jets. With blowhard Rex Ryan as the coach and a rookie at quarterback, he'll have no trouble demolishing the chemistry on that team quickly.
6. You know, I'm starting to think Matt Wieters isn't going to hit those .311/.395/.544, 31-homer, 102-RBI Pecota projections after all. But that's not going to stop me from drafting him five rounds higher than I should again next year, because at some point, the Orioles' rookie catcher will become Mike Piazza with Gold Glove defensive skills.
7. Speaking of fantasy sports, had my first of four football drafts this past weekend, and while I realize no one gives a flying Houshmandzadeh about other peoples' fantasy teams, you really think that's going to stop me? So I ask you, what would you think of a roster in a 10-team league that included Brian Westbrook, Randy Moss, Kurt Warner, Marion Barber, Greg Jennings, Bernard Berrian, Jonathan Stewart, Darren McFadden, Tony Romo, the Pats D, and some kickers and other spare parts? Because I like it a lot, which probably means I'm destined for my usual seventh-place finish.
8. Quick, completely subjective grades for "The Sports Hub 98.5" through three mostly encouraging weeks . . .
Toucher and Rich: B+. Some of the bits ("Ask a Pink Hat") go on too long, but they are legitimately funny and entertaining, particularly when hammering on . . . Tanguay and Zolak: D. Zolak is fine -- maybe better than fine -- when he's talking football. But Tanguay's insistence on searching for controversy when there's none to be found is beyond annoying. Felger and Mazz B. Considerably more enjoyable than their WEEI alternative. Just wish they'd tone down the "this is what the fans think" generalities. Damon Amendolara A. Reasons why this show suggests the suits at CBS Radio know what they are doing are covered here.
9. Sure was a treat to watch Pedro's almost-vintage performance last night, when he whiffed nine and routinely touched 93 on the gun. But almost as good was Pedro's classy postgame tip of the hat to the young ace he defeated, San Francisco's Tim Lincecum, of whom Pedro said: "He's amazing. He reminds me a lot of me, only twice as better at the same time in the big leagues." Can't think of higher praise for a young pitcher, particularly considering the source.
10. As for today's Completely Random Baseball Card:
Because you can never go wrong with Boomer, that's why.
About Touching All The Bases
Irreverence and insight from Chad Finn, a Globe/Boston.com sports writer and media columnist. A winner of several national and regional writing awards, he is the founder and sole contributor to the TATB blog, which launched in December 2004. Yes, he realizes how lucky he is.