You Had a Bad Day

Boston Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz tugs on his cap after giving up his second two-run home run against Tampa Bay Rays in the fourth inning during their spring training baseball game in Fort Myers, Fla., Tuesday March 31, 2009. Buchholz lasted 5 1/3 innings, giving up six earned runs on nine hits.
(AP)

Things Didn't Go Clay's Way, So He's Probably Going Away

"Because you had a bad day
You're taking one down
You sing a sad song just to turn it around
You say you don't know
You tell me don't lie
You work at a smile and you go for a ride"

-- Daniel Powter

...But Sox Rally Back Against AL Champs: Boston 8, Tampa 7
'Tek Turns Up the Power with 3-Run HR
Old Friend Gabe Kapler Is Good for a Double
Buch Tagged for 6 Runs, 9 Hits, 5 1-3 Innings
Clay's ERA Jumps from 0.46 to 2.52

"If Penny's ready to go, they're going to give him the ball and I'll start in Pawtucket. And if not, I'm the next guy in line. So, I'm just going to keep coming out every day and doing work and hopefully something good'll happen. Something'll come out of it." -- Clay Buchholz is probably getting on that bus

Penny for Your Thoughts?
Put Your Two Cents In ...


Look Who's Available

Wily Mo Pena of the Washington Nationals reacts after striking out. Gary Sheffield waiting to bat during spring training
(Getty Images / AP)

Just In Case J.D. Can't Go, You Never Know

Wily Mo Pena Released, 499 Sheff, Too

"I wouldn't say I'm shocked, but I am surprised. To do this when somebody is one home run away ... I don't know how to react to it." -- Sheffield to The Oakland Press of Pontiac

Dice-OK
Boston Red Sox pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka, of Japan, throws to an Atlanta Braves batter during the second inning of a spring training baseball game, Monday, March 30, 2009, in Kissimmee, Fla.
(AP)

WBC MVP Is Back on Track with America's Team

Matsuzaka, Kawakami Both Sharp in Kissimmee
Dice Keeps It Under Control, 3 Walks, But Just Two Hits in 75 Pitches Over 5
Extra Bases: Farrell Content with the Effort
The Spring Thing Is Winding Down: Braves 4, Sox 3
Baldelli Hits Bomb No. 2

"Luckily today, going up against Kenshin-san on the other side gave me a change to get revved up. When I'm going up against any Japanese player, whether pitcher or position player, I'm always keeping an eye out on what kind of game they're going to pitch or how they're doing in the batter's box." -- Matsuzaka through an interpreter

Smoltz Shoulder Must Be Solid: John Tees It Up with Tiger, Visits Braves
This Just In... Red Sox Opening Day Not Canceled
Guitar Bronson Arroyo Has Carpal Tunnel Issues
Manny's First Error Is a Trip

Loose Lips Sank Sox

BDD AP/Dom Miguel Photography
(LTH: AP / Henry: Dom Miguel Photography)

The Bronx Bother: Teixeira Now Says Sox Talk
Cheapened the Talks with the Sox

Leigh Teixeira's Husband Talks About Quiet Time

Teixeira was asked specifically if the public nature of the Red Sox negotiations last winter bothered him. "It did, it did," replied Teixeira. "And I think in the end, it probably worked against them a little bit, because everyone thought the Red Sox were [my] No. 1, but in reality, the Yankees were gonna be the team, like I said all along, if all things were equal, the Yankees were the place that I wanted to go.

Throw King in the Ring

Author Stephen King throws out the ceremonial first pitch prior to the Boston Red Sox vs St. Louis Cardinals spring training baseball game in Fort Myers, Fla., Friday March 27, 2009.
(AP)

Author Stephen King May Be Penned Into Sox Rotation
You Just Can't Have Enough Starting Pitching

Eight Is Enough... Now Sox Should Be All Set:
Lester, Beckett, Buchholz, Matsuzaka, Smoltz,
Penny, Wakefield, King, ... and Masterson?


Who? Who? Julio Lugo

Boston Red Sox shortstop Julio Lugo stretches his arms as walks onto the field during a spring training baseball practice in Fort Myers, Fla., Friday March 27, 2009. Lugo, who did not participate in the practice, had knee surgery last week.
(AP)

... Was Back on the Field, Sort Of

Lugo Back in Camp After Knee Surgery

"Hopefully, in three weeks I'll be ready. Probably three or four weeks, I'll be fine."
-- The Man, Julio Lugo

Dices Are Wild: Matsuzaka Came Back Today, Too
Beckett Knocked Around in Walkoff Win

The Pitchmen Cometh

... Ahhh Spring …a time for baseball, hot dogs, apple pie
and furniture commercials on NESN!

The 4 Guys
BDD - Penny, Smoltz, Wake, Buchholz
(AP)

... For Just 2 Spots.
Who's It Gonna Be Come June?

Tim Wakefield: Well-Known Knuckleballer Rolls Through Yankees Lineup
Can the Loyal Sox Legend and Fan Favorite Be Denied?
Brad Penny: Former NL All-Star's Fastball Hums in 3 Strong Innings
Penny Could Be the Steal of the Free Agent Market If Healthy
Clay Buchholz: Young Starter Nearly Unhittable This Spring, 0.46 ERA
Does He Really Deserve to Start in Pawtucket?
John Smoltz: Hall of Fame Lock Looks Great in 40-Pitch 'Pen Session
How Can You Keep Smoltz on the Sidelines?

Leigh Teixeira's Husband
to Fenway: Bring It On

Leigh Teixeira's Husband enters in during batting practice before their spring training baseball game at Brighthouse Field in Clearwater, Fla., Monday, March 23, 2009.
(AP)

Pinstripe Phony Thinks It's Good to Be the Bad Guy in Boston
We'll See How That Works Out for Him on April 24

McAdam: Teixeira Up for Rivalry

"I hope I am [the bad guy], I think that’s good. " -- Leigh Teixeira's husband looking forward to Fenway

Yanks Spank A-Roid: Tone Down the Off-field Act
More Bad Guys: Frank Deford Names Marbury and Manny As Two of
The Four Horsemen of the Athletic Apocalypse


And Smoltz Makes Seven

John Smoltz throws this morning in Fort Myers, Fla.
(AP)

This Just In: The Red Sox Have Too Much Pitching:
Beckett, Lester, Dice, Wake, Penny, Buch, and John Smoltz

The Future Looks Bright: Smoltz Throws 40 Fastballs in Fort Myers

Wake No Mistake

Boston Red Sox manager Terry Francona, center, talks to pitcher Tim Wakefield before taking Wakefield out of the game in the sixth inning of the Red Sox 7-1 loss to the New York Yankees in their spring training baseball game at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla., Tuesday, March 24, 2009.
(AP)

... Tim Still Has Something Left in the Tank

Pitchers' Duel Turns to Blowout in Tampa
Wake Keeps Pace with Burnett for Five Plus
By George, I Think He's Got It! Kottaras Is Eye Catching
Ramon Ramirez Doesn't Blow Up, But MDC and Hansack Do
Get Used to It: Leigh Teixeira's Husband Goes 0-for-3
Wilkerson (.119), Baldelli (.179) Aren't Going to Be Filling Manny's Shoes
Austin Power: Jackson Was the Straw That Stirred the Drink Tonight
By the Way, the Final: NYY 7, BOS 1

"I'm very comfortable throwing to Georgie. He's got unbelievable hands. I know he's doing a lot of work with Gary Tuck as far as catching knuckleballs on the machine twice a day. Just getting his comfort level there. But as far as I'm concerned, I'm very comfortable throwing to him. I thought he did an outstanding job last night." -- 3.25.09, Tim Wakefield on WEEI's Dale and Holley


Remember That World Baseball Classic?


Well It Looks Like Japan Won The Thing

Now Playing in Theaters

BDD -- Mr. Punchy
(BDD / Mr. Punchy)

Even Dan Thinks Schilling's the Man

Shaughnessy: He Was Bloody Good Here

"The Schilling Hall debate could rage for five, 10, or even 20 years. Today is a day to cut through the blogs, blurbs, blabs, and political agendas and remember that Curt Schilling was one heck of a major league pitcher, a guy who wanted the ball when it mattered most. His last appearance in the majors was a 2-1 victory over Colorado at Fenway in the second game of the 2007 World Series. He gave up one run on four hits over 5 1/3 innings. He went out on top." -- 3.24.09, Dan Shaughnessy, Boston Globe

BDD / Mr. Punchy
(BDD Photo Illustration / Mr. Punchy)

The Schill Is Gone

Curt Schilling in dugout with Kevin Millar 2004 ALCS in New York
(Jim Davis / Boston Globe File)

Curt Schilling Won't Be Stepping on That Mound No More
Thanks for the Memories, and the Trophies

Blogging, Radio Co-Hosting, Gaming Company Stewardship, Facebook Updating,
and Family Vacations Not Enough to Get Schill in Major League Shape
... So He Calls It Quits

"This party has officially ended. After being blessed to experience 23 years of playing professional baseball in front of the world's best fans in so many different places, it is with zero regrets that I am making my retirement official." -- Big Schill on his blog

Where Are The Tears and the Three Hour Press Conference? Sincerely, Brett Favre
Wish He Had Posted This On His Blog After the 2007 Season. Sincerely, Theo Epstein
A Little Lidocaine and B-12 and He'd Still Be Pitching. Sincerely, Roger Clemens


This Just In: There Once Was a Bloody Sock ...

BDD / Frank Galasso illustration
(BDD / Frank Galasso Illustration)

... The Ankle Prior to Game 2 of 2004 World Series


Those Were The Days My Friend ...

July 11, 2004
(Jim Davis / Globe File Photo)

... We Thought They'd Never End
A Look Back at Schilling in Boston
Mazz: Schilling is Hardly an Open-and-Shut Case for Hall
No Way, Jose?

The End of the World

Team USA's Derek Jeter sits in the dugout during the ninth inning of their semifinals of the World Baseball Classic against Team Japan in Los Angeles, California March 22, 2009. Team Japan defeated Team USA.
(Reuters)

USA Has Their Backs to the Wall...
Oh Wait, They're Going Home... Or Back to Florida
Japan Wins WBC... Wait... Oh, There's Another Game Tonight

Japan 9, A Few Guys Left That Have Some Country Pride 4 | Box
Seems Like August, Tito: Dice-K Throws His Usual 4 Innings, 100 Pitches
Jimmy Rollins Can't Do It All; Roberts, DeRosa Can Fill In for Pedroia, Youk
Roy Oswalt Pitched Like It Was Spring Training... Hey, Wait a Minute
Good Thing USA Lost, Papelbon Was Ready to Jump on a Plane to Grab a Save Tonight
Meanwhile, Beckett Pitched Like He Could Have Beaten Japan Last Night
Sox 3, The Real World Baseball Champs 0

"I'm very, very disappointed. We had high hopes. This is the second time we were supposed to win. We taught these people the game." -- The eloquent ambassador Tommy Lasorda congratulating Japan


Client No. 10
A-Rod and the madam

A-Rod Does It Again

Stop Us If You Heard This... Alex Rodriguez Embarrasses Himself
Daily News Sources: Madam Dated A-Rod, Provided Him with Hookers
... So It Will Be Blond Masks, Mirrors, and A-Roid Chants at Fenway in June...

"All I can say is there is a connection." -- Elliot Spitzer Madam Kristin Davis to Newsday

It's Been Such a Long Time

9-26-2001: Former Red Sox first baseman Mo Vaughn (right) was a visitor at Fenway Park during Boston's batting practice. He got together in the stands and had a few laughs with ex-teammate Nomar Garciaparra.
(Jim Davis / Boston Globe File)

... Since the Sox Had Power We Could Call Our Own

BDD's exclusive excerpt of the Maple Street Press 2009 Red Sox Annual
Power Trip: The Search for Homegrown Middle-of-the-Order Bats, by Chris Paddock

200_RS09_Cover-100.jpg

"No big news flash here. It’s been a bit of problem.”

So began a thread on the Sons of Sam Horn message board this past October titled “Red Sox and developing power hitters.” Not a historical problem, of course. Boston’s storied past is flush with homegrown sluggers, from Ted Williams to Carl Yastrzemski to Jim Ed Rice to Mo Vaughn. And Boston’s Fenway Park has long held a reputation as a hitter’s haven, which served as a potential obstacle in the famed Thanksgiving negotiations with Curt Schilling, and probably contributed to Rice’s long wait for the Hall of Fame.

What people were getting at in the thread is that it’s been some time since a bona fide power hitter made his way through the system. Since 1990, only three players drafted by the Sox have hit more than 25 home runs in a major league season: Trot Nixon, Nomar Garciaparra, and Kevin Youkilis. You can add Hanley Ramirez when international signings are included. That’s a total of four “power hitters” in just shy of 20 years of amateur drafts and international signing periods, and only three total seasons of over 30 home runs (one by Ramirez, two by Garciaparra).

Given that Boston’s current general manager, Theo Epstein, has all but finished construction on his “$100 million player-development machine,” you have to wonder if this is not an accident, as plenty of observers do. His minor league staff has done an incredible job of producing top-level, homegrown talent, but, stars that they are, you’re not going to see Dustin Pedroia, Jonathan Papelbon, or Jon Lester hitting cleanup very often.

And when, in this past year’s draft, Boston gave out their highest draft bonus ever to a legitimate two-way high school player, Casey Kelly, who they coveted much more as a pitcher, and also offered what would have been their second-highest bonus ever to towering, young hurler Alex Meyer (who turned it down), you have to start wondering about it your-self. Add in recent big-ticket picks that the Red Sox have not signed, such as mashers Pedro Alvarez, Matt LaPorta, and Hunter Morris, and you can see where this theory might have some legs to it.

No one in the Red Sox organization will say there is an overt strategy to draft and develop pitching, and to find power via free agency and trade. When it comes to amateur talent, they’ll say they’re looking for the best players avail-able, just like any other organization.

But even with the obvious lack of middle-of-the-order, farm-fed bats at the Fens, and regardless of Boston’s recent draft history, and despite the fact that Director of Amateur Scouting Jason McLeod himself will admit, if pressed, that he thinks pitching may ultimately be a more valuable equity than hitting—that “the value of pitching in baseball right now is incredibly high”—it’s very difficult to say, when you look a bit deeper, that the Red Sox have intentionally shied away from amateur power hitters.

Sound bites like “can’t have enough pitching” and “best player available” may come across as company lines, but there is a lot of evidence to support that Boston’s recent homegrown power outage really has been, by and large, dictated by circumstances, not strategy. When you start looking into each draft under Epstein, one by one, and hone in on the indi-vidual context of every high-level pick, scrutinize who the Sox could have selected instead (admittedly, a slippery slope), and try to understand why certain kids weren’t signed, it becomes difficult to substantiate the argument that Boston deval-ues amateur power hitters in favor of pitching.

The Most Important Start in the History of the Universe

Pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka of Team Japan leaves the field after a workout for the semifinals of the World Baseball Classic in Los Angeles, March 20, 2009.
(Reuters)

Matsuzaka-San Takes on the United States of America
in the Most Anticipated Game in the World

Short-Handed Team USA Will Try to Advance to the Finals Tonight at 8 p.m.
Darvish Can Step in if Dice-K Falters

The Buch Starts Here

Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz delivers against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the first inning of a spring training baseball game in Fort Myers, Fla., Friday March 20, 2009.
(AP)

Make Room in the 'Pen for Penny... Or Give Wake a Break
Because Clay Is Pitching His Way Into the Starting Rotation

0.66 ERA for Clay
Can Papelbon Keep Shouldering the Load? Sincerely, Minneapolis Star Trib
Sox Mop the Deck with Pirates, 11-4
Welcome Back Dustin Pedroia, Now Hop on a Plane to LA, Sincerely Bud Selig
We're Not Letting Lowrie's Booming Bat Go Unnoticed
This Just In: Kottaras Can Hit a Little Bit, Too
Gotta Hand It to Him: At the End of the Day, J.D.'s OK
More Good News: Youk Sheds His Boot Today

"Again, a big step in the right. I thought he was throwing the ball real well. And his demeanor, his tempo on the mound have all been improving this whole spring. And it's sure nice to see." -- Brad Mills, the next manager of the Red Sox, on Buchholz's performance

Catching Up with Old Friends: Nixon, Kapler, Coco, and El Guapo
Leigh Teixeira's Husband Hits First Homer for Yankees

Spring is Here

... And the Hot Dog Man of City of Palms Park Barks Out a Few Springtime Orders!

The WBC Is Killing Us!
Team USA's David Wright is congratulated by Kevin Youkilis, Derek Jeter, second from right, and Shane Victorino after a 6-5 win over Puerto Rico at the World Classic Baseball game in Miami, Tuesday, March 17, 2009.
(AP)

Youk Injures Ankle, Foot, Follows Pedroia Back to Fort Myers
Is Dice-K Going Down Next Bud Selig?!?
Sure Looks Like the Rolling Dogpile Was the Culprit

YOUK DROPS OUT OF WBC WITH INJURY
MRI Negative But the WBC Is Positively at Fault
Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm:
USA Manager Says Youk Injury Happened '3 or 4' Days Ago
So He's Jumping Around Like Crazy On His Bad Ankle and Foot After the PR Win?
It Is the WBC. There's No Dogpile When the Sox Win the Mayor's Cup
Adding Insult to Injury: Dunn Can't Fill Youk's Glove in 10-6 Loss to Venezuela
Video: Watch Youk Breaking Tackles in the Wild Celebration


WBC video of celebration

"To limit movement and allow his ankle to heal, Youkilis will wear a walking boot for the next several days..." -- 3.18.09, part of the Red Sox statement.... wonderful


So This Scrum Had Nothing to Do With It?

Coach Mike Schmidt #20, Kevin Youkilis #21, Shane Victorino #50 and Derek Jeter #2 of United States jump on David Wright #4 after Wright delivered the game-winning hit in the bottom of the ninth inning against Puerto Rico
(Doug Benc / Getty Images)

Umm, OK... Sure... Got It Davey

"He's a huge part of this ball club. But also we don't want to take any chances. Ankles can linger, and that's something that needs to be addressed right away. He played with kind of a sprained ankle the other night." -- Davey Johnson, USA manager who added that Youkilis did not injure the ankle during the wild celebration after Tuesday's comeback 6-5 victory over Puerto Rico.


Hey, Wait a Minute ...

Jeter jumps on Youkilis after Team USA defeats Puerto Rico
(Doug Benc / Getty Images)

Did Captain Yankee Jump on Youk's Foot
And Was It An Accident?

Hamming It Up
Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez attempts to hit a ball with a cricket bat Wednesday, March 18, 2009, at the Arizona Cricket Club's pitch in Gilbert, Ariz. Ramirez tried his hand at the game as part of a promotion for DirecTV's Cricket Ticket broadcasting package
(AP)

Same Old Manny Sticks It to Dodger Fans

Manny Can't Step Up to the Plate, But He Steps Onto the DirecTV Pitch
Ramirez Takes a Swing at Cricket

Manny Ramirez's tight hamstring is keeping him out of the Dodgers lineup this week but the former Red Sox outfielder faced live pitching today... from a cricket bowler... as part of a promotion for DirecTV. Ramirez was swinging at googlies and grubbers instead of split-finger fast balls in his debut as a cricket batsman. Manny hit five of eight pitches from the bowler, including a rocket shot that dispersed a crowd standing behind the bowler.

"I have faced some tough pitchers before, but we don't have to ever swing at a bouncing ball that is rising as it passes us," said Ramirez, who was coached at the event by Australian cricketer Shaun Marsh. "Shaun is a great hitter and he gave me some great pointers. I hadn't watched much cricket in the past, but the game is a lot like baseball. Shaun said I definitely have a future in the game."

After signing a two-year, $45-million contract and reporting late to spring training, Manny developed the tightness in running drills in Arizona last week. He aggravated the sore hamstring on Sunday while running down a double playing left field for the first time this spring. The Dodgers then decided to rest Ramirez, at least through this week.

"We're just going to lay low till we get rid of this," Los Angeles Dodgers manager Joe Torre said Monday. "We're just going to keep him out. I can't give you a time because I don't know the time, but it's certainly going to be through the weekend and probably beyond that."

"Maybe age is catching up on me," Ramirez said after exiting the game on Sunday.

Material from DirecTV was used in this update.

Manny Ramirez jokingly raises a cricket bat prior to attempting to hit a ball,  Wednesday, March 18, 2009, at the Arizona Cricket Club's pitch in Gilbert, Ariz.
(AP)

Must See TV: Manny Is 'El Maniaco'

Backup to the Future

Frank Galasso illustration
(BDD / Frank Galasso Illustration)

Sox Pick Kottaras

Catching Upset: Sox Release Josh Bard
Mazz: In Some Ways, Kottaras a Better Fit

Mirrod
Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez poses for a photo spread in DETAILS magazine.
(Details magazine photo by Steven Klein)

Bring Your Mirrors to Fenway on Tuesday Night, June 9...
Sexy Alexy Will Like What He Sees

The Dope Opera in New York Continues as Oddball 'Roid-Boy Alex Rodriguez
Takes a Really Good Look at Himself in Details Magazine
More A-Rod Striking the Pose | It's All in Details

3.17.09 New York Post: "Details writer Jason Gay noted that A-Rod frantically reached out to him after the interview to retract the revelation of his favorite Madonna song. The meltdown seemed like an odd concern of A-Rod's, according to Gay, considering that the Bomber's chat with Details came after Sports Illustrated reported he had used banned substances, and days before he faced teammates and media in Tampa. A-Rod told the writer he didn't want that particular Madonna song blaring at rival American League parks at every road game."... just play 'em all Mr. DJ... Borderline... Vogue...

Somebody Buy This Man Some Sheets

Alex Rodriguez stretches out and stares at his own reflection in this photo for Details magazine.
(Details magazine photo by Steven Klein)

And Once Again, We'd Like to Thank Don Fehr and the Glorious Players Association for Keeping This Crazy Cat Out of Boston

The Wright Stuff

Team USA's Kevin Youkilis is congratulated by teammate David Wright after he hit a third inning home run against Team Puerto Rico during their second round World Baseball Classic game in Miami, Florida, March 17, 2009.
(Reuters)

Semi-Tough USA Rallies Past Puerto Rico

David is Goliath with 2-Run Single in the 9th as Team USA Sneaks Past PR, 6-5
Youk-S-A Smacks 3rd WBC Homer, Draws Key Walk
A Couple of Fans in the Stands Go Wild
Someone Watched It on TV, Too

"You're celebrating a game. You're celebrating a nation." -- 3.17.09, Kevin Youkilis, the ultimate patriot

Short Story

Dressed as a leprechaun, Tedi Valentine of Cape Coral, Fla. high-fives Boston Red Sox players prior to their spring training baseball game against the Minnesota Twins in Fort Myers, Fla., Tuesday March 17, 2009.
(AP)

And a High Five: O'rtiz Taped No. 15 on the Little Guy's Back

Another version... Much to the delight of Larry Lucchino, Dustin Pedroia models the new Red Sox Hanging Shamrock hat... on sale now at RedSox.com...

Video: 'Leprechaun' Stops in for Chat with Remy and D.O.
Top O' the Afternoon: Sox Power Up on St. Patrick's Day
Green Day: Sox Win It 9-to-5, Left Turns: Ortiz Homers, 'Tek Too
Ellsbury, Bay Goes Bay, Waaaayyy Back, It's a Hit Parade in Fort Myers
Photos: Sox Go Green, Sort Of, for St. Patrick's Day
Deadspin: Cashman Poses with Yankees Suck T-Shirt Wearer
Surviving Grady: Julian Tavarez Signs With the 600-Pound J-Lo

Julio Who?
Boston Red Sox' J.D. Drew congratulates Jed Lowrie after Lowrie's solo home run off Toronto Blue Jays starter Roy Halladay during the third inning of a MLB spring training exhibition baseball game in Dunedin, Florida March 16, 2009.
(Reuters)

Take Your Time J.L. Sincerely, J.L.

Lowrie Leads Sox to Win Over Jays, 6-4
Lowrie, Carter, and Bailey Go Deep Off Doc
Masterson Hit a Little Bit, Daniel Bard Remains Untouchable
Nether-Ending Story: USA Lives Another Day | Sunday: Orioles Own Sox
How 'Bout That Dice-K?... Threw, Like, a Hundred Pitches
T.J. Simers: Boston Won't Give Up Its Obsession with Manny
Wilbur: T.J. Hooks 'Em: | This Just In: Hammy Sidelines Manny

WBC TKO'S MVP

Dustin Pedroia  of the USA looks on during batting practice during the 2009 World Baseball Classic Pool C match on March 8, 2009 at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
(Elsa/Getty Images)

AND USA MIA VS. PR

Injuries Pile Up for Sox: Pedroia Strains Abdominal Muscle

Et Tu, Dusty? Pedroia Hurt, Pulls Out Of Lineup in WBC Debacle
Bud Selig's Marketing Venture Costs Sox in the End
America's Team Hammered Mercilessly, 11-1
Pedroia Optimistic | Lester Gets 5-Year Deal | Lugo Surgery Set

"I’ve played with pain before but I’ve never really dealt with anything like this."
-- 3.14.09, Dustin Pedroia

Lugociaparra
Boston Red Sox shortstop Julio Lugo kicks his right leg while working out prior to Friday's game against the New York Yankees in Fort Myers, Fla., Friday March 13, 2009. According to manager Terry Francona, Lugo later left during the first inning of the game with soreness in his knee
(AP)

Another Kick in the Teeth at Shortstop
Sox Are Knee-Deep In Trouble

The Comeback Kid Is Back on the Sidelines
Lugo Down with Knee Injury, Will Have Surgery Tuesday

Lugo May Have Meniscus Tear; Returning to Boston
This Guy Seems a Little Fragile for a Shortstop. Sincerely, Nomar Garciaparra
Hey Tito, Can We Can the Rockettes Stretching Routine Before Games? Thanks...

Julio Lugo: "I'm worried. Every time you have something hurt, you're worried because I know I'm the type, when something bothers me, when I say something, I'm in pain. Otherwise I'm not going to complain to pain. If you see me coming out, I'm hurting."


This Just In ...

A-Rod's dog is ready for his walk
(Craig Good Photo)

A-Roid's Dog Is Ready for His Walk

Lowell, Papi Not Done Yet, Pair Goes Deep as Sox Beat Yanks, 8-4
Wake Roughed Up Again, Saito, Tazawa Sharp
We-Always-Wanted-Lowrie Starts to Hit Just in Time
Will Mariano Rivera Be Passing the Torch to... Daniel Bard?
Sox Pass on Barry Bonds*

Simon Says ...

Greenie? Bardsie? Wilkie? Bailsie? Who Will Be the Next Spring Training Idol?

The 'C' Word
Papelbon's still talking about Manny
(AP)

Papelbon Unloads on Manny, Calls Him a Cancer
Paps Doesn't Back Away from Comments Today
Manny Pulls Out of Dodgers Game with 'Tight Hammy'

"... And for him not to be on the same page as the rest of the team was a killer, man! It just takes one guy to bring an entire team down, and that’s exactly what was happening. Once we saw that, we weren’t afraid to get rid of him. It’s like cancer. That’s what he was. Cancer. He had to go. It sucked, but that was the only scenario that was going to work. That was it for us. And after, you could feel it in the air in the clubhouse. We got Jason Bay — Johnny Ballgame, plays the game right, plays through broken knees, runs out every ground ball — and it was like a breath of fresh air, man! Awesome! No question." -- Jonathan Papelbon goes off on LA Ram

Did Pap Go Too Far With His Latest Rant?
Papelbon Sounds Off on Manny in Esquire Magazine
Steven A. Smith: If Pap Didn't Say It to Manny, He's a Punk
Gammons: 'Jonathan Did Not Use His Words Well'

Peter Gammons on Papelbon: “Jonathan’s very emotional. He’s not Abraham Lincoln. But there’s a lot of hard feelings. It was very telling in Colleen Dominguez’s interview with Manny that he doesn’t talk to anybody on the Red Sox. She said David Ortiz? He said no. … and it’s kind of too bad but Manny became obsessed with the money and there were things that happened like stiffing all the clubhouse kids, and stuff like that that left very bad tastes in his teammates mouths. And also the fact that Manny made it very clear. Winning is not important, my contract is. That’s the way he left. And that’s the way the players felt… I find it really distasteful for anyone to use the word “cancer” in relationship to a human being because it just, it doesn’t fit. Jonathan did not use his words well." -- 3.12.09, Peter Gammons on ESPN radio

And Steven A. Smith may have a point... Papelbon said today that while some players tried to talk to Ramirez about his behavior, he was not among them. "Well, I think some guys on our team that maybe could talk to him," Papelbon said. "Guys like me I can't talk no sense into him. I think there's other guys on this team that had a better opportunity at that than me."

I Have No Problem Calling Out Someone 3,000 Miles Away. Sincerely, Joe Torre
Umm, I Don't Think Manny's a Cancer. Sincerely, Jon Lester
Not Sure I Like the Nickname "Chemo Treatment" Paps. Sincerely, Jason Bay
Gimme Back That Filet-O-Fish! Give Me That Fish! Sincerely, Manny Ramirez

Meanwhile, Manny Just Wants to Ride His Tricycle...


No Country for Sox Men

Kevin Youkilis of the USA reacts after he struck out and ended the game during the 2009 World Baseball Classic Pool C match at the Rogers Centre March 11, 2009 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Venezuela defeated the USA 5-3.  Dustin Pedroia watch seventh-inning.
(Elsa / Getty Images | AP)

Pedroia and Youk Combine For An 0-for-9 | Box
Venezuela Holds Off USA, 5-3
All 12 in Attendance in Toronto Were Shocked

Youk Calls for USA to Step It Up: "Hopefully we get a crowd that roots for us in the United States. It’s going to be tough. I think our fans need to step it up. The people of the United States need to step it up and cheer us on.” -- Kevin Youkilis on the weak fan support for Team USA

Do You Believe in Miracles?

Netherlands' players celebrate after defeating the Dominican Republic 2-1 in the tenth inning of a World Baseball Classic game in San Juan, Tuesday, March 10, 2009. Netherlands advanced to round 2, and the Dominicans were eliminated.
SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO - MARCH 10: Jose Guillen, Damaso Marte, Jose Reyes, and Robinson Cano of the Dominican Republic react after losing 3-2 against the Netherlands during the 2009 World Baseball Classic Pool D match at Hiram Bithorn Stadium March 10, 2009 in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
(AP | Al Bello / Getty Images)

Dominican't Get Past The Netherlands

Down Goes DR! Down Goes the DR!

"Little roller up along first, BEHIND THE BAG! It gets through Aybar! Here comes Kingsale and the Netherlands win it!" -- Sincerely, Vin Scully

Netherlands Advances 2-1 | Box | Video: Wild Finish for Dutch
DR Must Be Missin' an Angel, Missin' One Angel Guy... Sincerely, Angel Presinal
Stuifbergen a Sharp Starter for Dutch in 4 Innings of Work
Smit, Cordemas, Neuman, Markwell, and Boyd Go 7 Strong in Relief
It's the Pedro of Old Again for 3 Innings
Ortiz Forced to Play First, Goes 1-for-4

Hellowell Again

Boston Red Sox Mike Lowell connects for a single against the Baltimore Orioles during the seventh inning of their spring training baseball game in Fort Myers, Fla., Tuesday March 10, 2009. Lowell, who had hip surgery in the off season, had one hit in his first game back this season.
(AP)

Mike Lowell Is Back in the Swing of Things for the Sox

Third Baseman Starts Slow, Finishes Strong
Orioles Beat Up on Second String Pitching, 5-1 | Box
Lowell Looked a Little Rusty to Me. Sincerely, Leigh Teixeira
Felix Doubront and Kris Johnson Come Undone with Game On the Line... (Who?)
Lowrie Slams an Inside-the-Park-Long-Out
Papelbon Blows No-Hit Bid in 4th

"I'd like to play a full load. I'd like to play, if I can, 150 games. That's normal. I don't think that's an unrealistic goal." -- 3.10.09, Iron Mike Lowell could be back


A Perfect Reminder

Boston Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz delivers against the Baltimore Orioles during the second inning of their spring training baseball game in Fort Myers, Fla., Tuesday March 10, 2009.
(AP)

Buchholz Does It, Again!... For 3 Innings

Clay Line: 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R
He Looked Like a No. 4 Starter Out There. Sincerely, Brad Penny and Tim Wakefield
Good to Know: D-Lowe Settling in with Braves
Author Q&A: Making Sense of Manny
Is This News That Clemens Is Clearly a Cheat?
Jason Bye... Italy Boots Neighbors to the North in WBC

Brady's New Bunch

Newlywed and football star Tom Brady Guest Stars on one episode as Himself in a celebrity golf tournament for Autism Speaks. He is joined by Mark Wahlberg, Adrian Grenier, Kevin Dillon, and Jerry Ferrara.
(DM / Mayer Photo)

Some Would Call It His Entourage

Turtle, Drama, Vince... and Hollywood Tom Brady
But Is He Ready for Some Football?
More Photos Brady and the Boys from PopSugar

Brad Boys, Brad Boys
Whatcha Gonna Do?

Boston Red Sox' Brad Wilkerson is greeted by teammates Jed Lowrie, Josh Bard, right, and Jeff Bailey,left, after driving them in after hitting a grand-slam home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the third inning of the spring training baseball game in Bradenton, Fla., Monday, March 9, 2009.
(AP)

Big League Brad Wilkerson Hits 4-Run Homer,
Unknown Sox Hold Off Pirates in 15-14 Extra Inning Thriller

Full Box: Kids That Hope to Be Sox15, Pittsburgh 14 | Recap the Drama
Could Nick Green Make Pedroia Expendable? No, But He's Having a Nice Spring
Reddick Comes Through in a Pinch in the 10th | Great Story on Josh and His Dad
Lowrie Says 'No Mas' in Short Shortstop Battle with Lugo
Bard, Bailey, Brown Look Like They Could Play in Boston
Lester 57 Pitches, Mum on Deal
Mazz: Another Good Sign

"Nothing is final. Nothing is written on paper or written in stone. Like I said, I just show up and do what I'm told and go where I'm told to go. That all I worry about." -- 3.10.09, Jon Lester sounding really excited about his alleged deal with Sox


Scattered Sox and Some Old Friends

 caption info
(Wire Photos)

Pedro, Nomar, and Some Really Long Hair on LA Ram

Welcome to the WBC Zone

The Red Sox are in a Different Time and Dimension,
A Place Beyond Terry Francona and Fort Myers

Matsuzaka Gets the Win As Japan Routs Korea | Ortiz is DH for DR
And Here's to Their Health:
Drew Back in the Game | Upbeat Diagnosis for Penny
Mike Lowell Nears Start


YOUK-S-A GOES DEEP IN WIN

Sox fans in Toronto
(BDD / ESPN screen image )

Youk Leads USA Again in 15-6 Win Over Venezuela, America Advances
Who? Who? Julio Lugo Leads Sox Over Rays, 8-2
Masterson Shines; Daeges, Van Every, Green Homer
Team USA Edges Canada in Thriller, 6-5
Tampa Bay Pounds Boston in Port Charlotte, 15-7
6 Sox Errors, 2 for Lowrie
Van Every, Kottaras Homer for WBC Battered Squad
Wake's ERA 5.14 and He's Not Getting Any Younger. Sincerely, Clay Buchholz
Lars Anderson, .083 AVG., Just Sayin'

Suffering The Fool

Los Angeles Dodgers Manny Ramirez speaks to the media in Glendale, Arizona, March 5, 2009.
(Reuters)

A Few More Parting Shots at Boston From Manny

He Suffered for 8 Years. He Won. He Got Out of Here.
Video: Happy Manny: No More Suffering

"I’m in a happy place, where I wanted to be, so . . . I don’t think . . . actually, I won. I won getting out of there [Boston] because I’m in a great place. I’m in a place that I want to play. I’m in a place that I’m gonna be happy.

"My teammates, they love me. The fans love me, the way I play. Hey, sometimes it’s better off to have a two-year deal in a place that you’re gonna be happy, than have an eight-year deal in a place that you’re gonna, you know, suffer." -- 3.5.09, Manny puts a Hollywood spin on his presser

LA Times, T.J. Simers: Manny's Back and Everyone Loves It
Shaughnessy: Lip Trouble (And Hip Trouble)

"There you go, Sox fans. Manny was suffering while you were cheering for him. He was suffering when the Sox paid him $160 million. It must have been hell, making all that cake, hearing the applause, and seeing little kids and big dads wearing his No. 24 Sox jersey. I guess we'll never know how hard it was to win two World Series, playing in front of baseball's best fans in baseball's best ballpark. It must have been tough to face zero sanctions or team exposure when he repeatedly quit on his team." ---- 3.5.09, Shaughnessy on Manny and A-Rod

Ramirez's Boston condo hits the market for $8.5m
Manny being clueless again? You decide
Read More Nonsense on LA Ram

Tom Flabby?
Tom Brady spotted relaxing on a balcony with new wife Gisele Bundchen (not pictured) and son John Edward Thomas Moynahan (not pictured) in Pacific Palisades, California.
(Star Pix / Aguilar / INFphoto.com)

Is Brady Getting Fat and Happy Now That He's Settled?

Names: Brady Looks Soft on the Balcony
More Non-Football Activity: Brady Will Star in New Episode of 'Entourage'
I Don't Think He Looks Flabby At All. Sincerely, Glen "Big Baby" Davis
Tommy Looks Just Fine to Me (... burp...). Sincerely, Phil Mickelson
YES HE IS FLABBY! HE'S A BIG FAT JERK, TOO! Sincerely, Bridget Moynahan
Meanwhile, Far Away From Hollywood, Matt Cassel Is Throwing and Lifting

Are You Serious?

BDD Photo Illustration / Joseph Boucher
(BDD Photo Illustration / Joseph Boucher)

... Minus the Boras Commission and California Taxes Of Course
Was Short Money Worth Shooting His Way Out of Boston?
So Much for All The $100 Million 'Serious' Offers...

Done Deal: Manny and Dodgers Agree to $45M Deal
Video: Manny Arrives at LAX. Short Answers. Long Hair.
Mazz: Dear Frank: Walk Away from Manny
Dear Manny, It's Not the Economy... It's You! Sincerely, Mark Teixeira

Manny Ramirez to T.J. Simers: "No, gas isn't up any more, but the price of milk is the same... Two years is fine with me... the economy is making me adjust. That's just the way it is." -- 3.4.09, Los Angeles Times


Tito Being Baghdad Bob

Red Sox manager Terry Francona (left) and outfielder J.D. Drew are seen at a Spring Training workout.
(Jim Davis / Globe Staff)

Francona's Back Spin Is Hard to Swallow

"If I needed somebody to put a needle in me, Bill Palmer's doing it." -- 3.4.09, Terry Francona... has got to be kidding

Shaughnessy: An Injection of Speculation
Drew: Back Injection, Penny: Shoulder Not Strong Enough,
Lugo: Stomach Issues Again, Mazz: Pained Expressions

"Does that make any sense? A guy with a herniated disk flies three hours in the teeth of a snowstorm to get a shot that could be administered in the training room at City of Palms Park. Who does that? And we are supposed to believe this is no big deal?" -- 3.4.09, Dan Shaughnessy, Boston Globe


Youk.S.A. ... Youk.S.A.

Team USA's Kevin Youkilis bats in the sixth inning against the New York Yankees in an exhibition spring baseball game in Tampa, Fla., Tuesday, March 3, 2009.
(AP)

Youkilis, Jeter Lead Team USA Over Yankees

Americans Beat Yankees, 6-5 | Reds Stop Sox, 9-8
Coco Crisp Could Have Pitched Better Than Ramon Ramirez

The Cold Shoulder

Boston Red Sox pitcher Brad Penny takes a breath between throws during a baseball spring training workout, in Fort Myers, Fla., Monday, Feb. 23, 2009.
(AP)

Delayed Starter? Penny Can't Get Loosey-Goosey in Fort Myers

MLB.com: Brad Penny's First Start May Be Delayed
ProJo: Masterson Should Be Ready to Start if Penny Can't Go
See, I Told You This Would Happen. Sincerely, Larry Bowa

Justin Masterson in waiting: "I do watch to see how he's doing just because I like the guy," Masterson said. "He's a really nice guy and I hope the best for him. I wouldn't say it's more along the lines of whether or not I'll be a starter if he can't make it, or anyone else. I'm " -- 3.2.09, ProJo.com

The Shell of Pedro Martinez Won't Be Disrespected!
Martinez Wants to Stop the Steroids Talk, and Start Talking About Him
ScottBoras.com: McCourt Could Be 'Playing with Fire,' Giants Should Step In


Green Day

Nick Green of the Boston Red Sox leaps over Ryan Freel of the Baltimore Orioles trying to turn a double play during a spring training game at Fort Lauderdale Stadium on March 2, 2009 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
(Rob Tringali / Getty Images)

Nick Green Looks Seasoned: Double, RBI, Single, Score

Extra Bases: Orioles Drop Sox, 5-3, Box
Pitching Strong Again: Masterson Solid for 2 Today
Future Hall of Famer Lars Anderson Goes 1-for-3, BB
Mills Gets the Loss, But Billy Traber Got Tagged

BDD is a feature of Boston.com. The site is not produced by the Boston Globe sports dept.

Boston Globe:

Red Sox agree to deal with Pierzynski > Sox non-tender Bailey, Kalish > Sox face arbitration decisions

Boston Herald:

Sox set Bailey, Kalish free > Doug Fister dealt to Nats > White Sox agree to 1-year contract with C Flowers

ProJo:

Pierzynski reaches deal with Red Sox > Kalish, Bailey non-tendered > Mike Napoli still ideal at first base > Middlebrooks, Red Sox both looking for improvement

NY Post:

Cashman pessimistic on Yankees re-signing Cano > Report: A-Rod called PEDs 'Food'

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