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1. NFL Draft:

* If I’m Tampa I throw up in my mouth when I see Jamis Winston mocking people with the picture of himself celebrating the draft with crab legs

* Who were the advisors to the 14 underclassman who declared for the draft but didn’t get drafted

* Sign of a program’s decline – Boston College players drafted in the first five rounds – ZERO (haven’t had a player drafted in top three rounds in three years)

2. Red Sox:

* I’m glad to see that Napoli’s much talked about surgery to help him sleep has helped his hitting

* John Farrell’s updated career record 334-339

* Hanley Ramirez is on pace for 65 home runs / 143 RBI Continue reading Connelly’s Top Ten: NFL Draft, Red Sox and Pandas »

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Congratulations on your MLB debut, Blake! Now, here's some unsolicited advice from an unqualified advisor... (Boston Herald)

There is nothing positive about losing the top two catchers on your depth chart. Christian Vazquez lost the 2015 season to Tommy John surgery, and his replacement as the starting catcher, Ryan Hanigan, will be out until at least the All-Star break.

But if there’s a silver lining, it’s that Boston Red Sox fans get to see the anticipated debut of top prospect Blake Swihart in the major leagues. After watching his first career start against the New York Yankees, though, I do have a piece of (unsolicited) advice for the rookie if he wants to have a successful career with the Red Sox.

Dearest Blake…

Continue reading A Piece of Advice for Swihart after his Red Sox Debut »

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After Saturday night’s “fight” and eventual decision, preserving woman-beater Floyd Mayweather’s undefeated professional record, we are left with this wonderful gif that proves if the justice system can’t fully prevail over Money’s extensive history of domestic abuse, he at least continues to get into a ring and can be punched… hard.

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(h/t Deadspin)

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The Patriots completed their 2015 draft selections with four selections in rounds five through seven. With the 166th overall selection, the team selected Navy long-snapper Joe Cardona. At pick 178, the Patriots took Mississippi State linebacker Matthew Wells and at 202nd overall Arkansas tight end AJ Derby joined the defending champs. The Patriots final selection of the draft was 247th overall and the team selected Marshall corner back Darryl Roberts.

Prior to the selection of Cardona the Patriots had only one long snapper, Tyler Ott. Normally, one long snapper is plenty for a football team, but Ott is only in his second year out of Harvard and did not snap for the team last year. Bringing Cardona in will allow for some competition in camp give the Patriots confidence going into the season that they have stability at that position.

Wells will most likely have to earn his spot on special teams and look for reps on defense from there, as is the case for most late round picks. He started every game for Mississippi State the last two seasons and was a dependable outside linebacker. One other note is that the Patriots heavy selection of defensive lineman could spell the end for some of their current depth players such as Jake Bequette and Michael Buchanan.

Derby began his college career as a quarterback before transitioning to tight end. His 6’4″, 255 pound body will make for a great red zone target if he makes the team. He is still raw, which is expected when a player moves from one position to another. He has good speed for a player his size and rarely drops a pass his way. His blocking needs work and his progress in that area will determine how much he plays in 2015 if he makes the team.

Roberts is a taller corner at 6’0″ but needs to add some muscle as he only checks in at 187 pounds. He has excellent speed and can play physically at the line of scrimmage. He sometimes gets to physical and was penalized six times in 2014 for it. Patriots fans saw a highly penalized corner last season with Brandon Browner, but Roberts will get less benefit of the doubt. In a relatively thin corner group, Roberts has a good chance to make the team. His coverage skills are good and if he can add more strength he could very well end up getting serious reps in games.

 

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MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 01:  Tre' Jackson #54 of the Florida State Seminoles walks on the field against the Northern Illinois Huskies during the Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on January 1, 2013 in Miami Gardens, Florida.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Entering the fourth round the Patriots had three selections, picks 101, 111, and 131. Arkansas defensive end Trey Flowers was the pick at 101, with Florida State guard Tre’ Jackson being taken at 111 and Georgia Tech Center Shaq Mason getting his call from the Patriots at 131.

Flowers led the Razorbacks in tackles for loss (15.5) and had six sacks. He is a powerful edge player who could look to get snaps in sub defense and third down situations. His 6’2″, 266 pound frame was best on display in SEC play this season, especially against Texas A&M. His speed is not great, which has him rely more on his power and bull rush than anything else. It was another team captain selection for New England, as Flowers was a leader and captain of the Arkansas defense. Continue reading Patriots Select Three in Round Four, Including (Finally) two Guards »

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Coming in to day two of the 2015 NFL draft, the Patriots held one pick in the second round (64th) as well as two picks in the third round (96th, 97th). By the end of day two, the Patriots selected Stanford safety Jordan Richards and Oklahoma defensive end Geneo Grissom while trading the 96th pick.

Richards is regarded as a strong safety who could play alongside Devin McCourty. he is universally viewed as a highly intelligent player who is rarely caught out of position. He also was a heavy presence on special teams at Stanford, something the Patriots value. At 5’11”, 211 pounds, Richards has the size to play in the box and physicality to be a presence close to the line of scrimmage. He had some struggles in coverage, especially deep, but with McCourty already entrenched in the secondary, Richards probably won’t be asked to patrol the deep part of the field regularly. Continue reading Patriots Select Jordan Richards, Geneo Grissom; Make Trade on Day 2 of Draft »

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A-Rod took advantage of the Red Sox bullpen to hit home run #660 to tie Willie Mays for fourth on the all-time home run list and give the Yankees a 3-2 win. (NY Daily News)

Sitting at 659 home runs for his career, Alex Rodriguez wasn’t in the initial lineup to start Friday night’s game at Fenway Park between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. It appeared he, and the rest of the baseball world, would have to wait another day to see him tie Willie Mays on the all-time home runs list.

It didn’t seem like it would change much when A-Rod pinch-hit in a tie game in the top of the eighth inning either and quickly was ahead of Red Sox reliever Junichi Tazawa 3-0. But with a green light (I guess that’s the case when you have over 600 home runs for your career) and one long swing, A-Rod is tied for fourth in MLB history with 660 home runs.

Though A-Rod’s is certainly the headline of last night’s loss to the Yankees — not only historically but also as the go-ahead home run in the 3-2 win over the Red Sox — the real story is in the tale of two bullpens.

Continue reading Yankees 3, Red Sox 2: A-Rod Ties Willie Mays on All-Time HR List in Tale of Two Bullpens »

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