pressherald.owens

Half of the 16 non-roster invitations to Boston Red Sox Spring Training were handed out to promising pitchers. The pitchers headed to JetBlue Field include Henry Owens, Brian Johnson, both left-handers, along with right-handed pitchers Dalier Hinojosa, Keith Couch, Felipe Paulino, Mitchell Boggs, Dana Eveland and Noe Ramirez.

Continue reading Eight Pitchers Offered Non-Roster Invites to Spring Training »

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Evan Turner's Buzzer Beater Lifted the Celtics to an 89-88 Win Over 1st Place Atlanta. (Photo courtesy David Butler II/USA Today Sports)

Sean Grande, the Celtics radio play-by-play voice, said it best:

“Strange things happen the last game before the All Star break.”

And strange things did happen as the Celtics defeated the Eastern Conference leading Atlanta Hawks 89-88. Evan Turner was the hero for the Green with his near buzzer-beating right-handed floater.

These Celtics are proving more and more that they deserve a shot and that none of us should be rooting for another tanked season. Let’s get into the Eastern Conference playoffs. Continue reading Hey Celtics: Forget Tanking, Go for the 8-Seed »

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Cady Lalanne and the UMass Minutemen are all smiles after moving into 1st place in the A-10. (Photo courtesy of UMass Athletics)

Well, they’re not alone at the top of the conference, but after a very good stretch of conference play, the UMass Minutemen find themselves part of a four way tie at the top of the Atlantic 10. Dayton, Rhode Island, and current #20 VCU are the three others tied with UMass, but for once it seems that conference play seems to be the better part of the season in Amherst. There’s still a lot of games left to be played, but UMass seems to have gotten lucky at the right time and are having balls bounce their way to get into this position. If you had asked me in December if I thought it was possible UMass had a chance at first place in the conference or even just a shot at one of the first round conference tournament byes, I would have thought you were crazy, but here we are on February 12th with the Minutemen headed in the right direction.

I mentioned that UMass has been lucky over the last couple of weeks and while that is true, one cannot discredit the Minutemen’s play and ability to have such a good stretch. Right now, UMass has won five straight and eight of their last ten, something they haven’t done since rattling off a string of six in a row last season from 12/28-1/18. Continue reading Don’t Look Now, but the Minutemen Sit Atop the A-10 »

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1. Boston success:

Since 2002, the Boston teams have been 20 Conference Finals (or an amazing 1.54 every year for 13 years): What other four-sports-team cities are close?

* Detroit……..14

* Philly……….10

* Chicago……..8

* New York…..8

2. Bruins stuff:

* David Krejci is on pace to average 63 games over the last three years Continue reading Connelly’s Top Ten: I Miss the Patriots »

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Dustin Pedroia leads a strong Red Sox infield in 2015 (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

The Red Sox are expected to have one of the best lineups in baseball, and most of that comes from their versatility and depth around the infield. This could be one of the best offensive teams in baseball during the 2015 season, and with the rotation lacking luster at the top, manager John Farrell will need more offensive pop than the 2014 team could produce. Newcomer Pablo Sandoval adds a fresh new look at third base, but it will be a more familiar face lighting up the infield this season in Boston.

Red Sox have one of the strongest MLB infields

This preview includes the three players we can expect to see significant time at each of the infield positions, along with the designated hitter spot, and explains how each position could function in 2015 depending on the health and performance of the starter.

First Base: Mike Napoli, Allen Craig, Daniel Nava

Mike Napoli brings a powerful right-handed bat, plate discipline, and better defense than most at first base, a once foreign position for the former catcher. Continue reading Red Sox 2015 Preview: Napoli, Pedroia, Bogaerts, Sandoval, Ortiz »

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JBJ222

Well once again, the Boston Red Sox missed an opportunity to pick up a strong starting pitcher in James Shields. Shields, 33, agreed in principle to a 4 year, $75 million deal with the San Diego Padres that also includes an option for a 5th year.

This was expected, as the Red Sox recently signed Wade Miley, Rick Porcello and Justin Masterson to provide some depth along with Clay Buchholz, Joe Kelly and Brandon Workman, among others. Cherington has been quoted as saying that the Red Sox will not make any additions to the pitching rotation prior to spring training, but with Cole Hamels possibly up for grabs, who knows what can happen. Will we see another addition to the pitching staff, or are the Red Sox quitting while they are ahead? Continue reading Red Sox Miss Golden Opportunity to Sign James Shields »

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wilfork

Throughout the next several weeks, I will be taking a look at each positional grouping for the Patriots. I will analyze current talent in place, what the need level for improvement is, and who could possibly be brought in as an addition.

Current Personnel:

DT: Alan Branch, Joe Vellano, Vince Wilfork, Chris Jones, Sealver Siliga, Dominique Easley

DE: Chandler Jones, Rob Ninkovich, Zach Moore, Jake Bequette (Practice Squad)

Need Level: Moderate

Possible fits: Eddie Goldman (Florida St.), Markus Golden (Missouri),  Michael Bennett (Ohio State), Gabe Wright (Auburn)

Vince Wilfork and company played well this year, but upgrades are needed. Continue reading Patriots Position Review: Defensive Line »

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