RED SOX STEW

25 MEN – 25 CABS, NOT THIS YEARS GROUP

Definition Team:

1. a group of people organized to work together 2. (General Sporting Terms) a group of players forming one of the sides in a sporting contest

3. 2013 Boston Red Sox

Alright, I confess.  #3 wasn’t in the dictionary, but it should have been.  This years Red Sox epitomize what a “TEAM” can do when everyone is working together. There was not one player on the roster that dragged this team down.  It was a close to perfect stew!.

THE STEW IS CREATED

Most of the ingredients in this concoction were gathered by Ben Charrington (MLB Executive of the year?).  Once that happened, John Farrell (AL Manager of the year?) was able to blend, season and prepare the stew, letting it simmer to perfection.

A FEW EARLY FLAWS IN THE RECIPE

There were a few items that originally didn’t seem to be blending in (Will Middlebrooks/Stephen Drew), but after some solid nurturing, they quickly fit in where they were supposed to.  During their absence a “miracle” broth named Jose Iglesias kept the stew brewing,  Pedro Ceriaco tried his hardest to season the pot, but he was just a bit tasteless.

And then there were some things that were overstuffed (Felix Dubront) and had to be drained before reaching their potential.

Unfortunately, some of the ingredients went bad early (Andrew Bailey/Joel Hanrahan/ Andrew Miller), and couldn’t be used.  But, “lo and behold,” there were different pieces (Koji Uehara/Junichi Tazawa/Craig Breslow) that were fresh and tasteful.

One of the opening day potables (Alfredo Aceves) just wasn’t ready to be part of the stew and was quickly put in the garbage disposal.

BRUISED

As in any good stew, some pieces get damaged (Clay Buchholz/David Ross/Jacoby Ellsbury) and others have to step in (Jake Peavy/Ryan Lavarnway/Jackie Bradley Jr) until they are ready.  Some took longer than others, but ultimately they were all repaired and ripe enough to add to the flavor.

TASTY OLD STAND-BYS

Any stew needs standard items (David Ortiz/Dustin Pedroia/Jon Lester) that have blended well in the past and continue to assure that any new pieces (Shane Victorino/Johnny Gomes/Ryan Dempster/Mike Napoli/Mike Carp) are allowed to blend in smoothly with other ingredients (Jarrod Saltalamachia/Daniel Nava) that have ripened over the past months.

SOUR TO SWEET

Things that had been sour in the past (John Lackey) were sweetened with a little sugar and suddenly added an alluring aroma that had been missing.

ALLOWING TO BREATHE

It is important that the chef’s assistants…

Greg Colbrunn Hitting Coach
57 Victor Rodriguez Assistant Hitting Coach
47 Juan Nieves Pitching Coach
43 Arnie Beyeler First Base Coach
13 Brian Butterfield Third Base Coach
17 Torey Lovullo Bench Coach
58 Dana LeVangie Bullpen Coach

…add to the blending of all the ingredients, being sure the freshness and quality is allowed to breathe.

THE FINAL PRODUCT

When the stew (Red Sox) was ready, it became the tastiest, most flavorful and easiest to digest meal in the entire café (MLB)

Congratulations to the dramatically different Boston Red Sox!!!!  Anything after this is cream in the coffee.

THANKS from Red Sox Nation for giving us a year that we never expected.

BEWARE OF ANGRY FALCONS

RELAX AND ENJOY

For the first time this year you could sit back and enjoy the second half of a Pats game without worrying about the outcome.

No thoughts of the D giving up a critical late TD…No worry that the Pats offense would collapse and give the Bucs a bunch of chances to come back…No feeling that the rookies would do something really dumb and turn the ball over…Absolutely no sense that the Tampa QB would suddenly turn into Joe Montana

BEWARE OF ANGRY FALCONS

Enjoy it while you can, the Falcons are next and they have their talons ready to grab whoever is next on their schedule. Unfortunately, that is the Patriots.  The game is in Atlanta and a team many thought could be Super Bowl contenders is on the ropes.  They are 1-2 and the only team below them in the NFC South is Tampa!  They just lost to the suddenly dangerous 3 & 0 Miami Dolphins. Another loss, particularly at home, and their season will start to slip away.  This will be the toughest test for the Pats D…we’ll find out if they are for real.

GAME 3 THOUGHTS

IT STARTED UGLY

* Tom Brady looked like he was afraid to throw the ball on the first three possessions.  Tampa was blitzing and he was holding onto the ball longer than he usually does.

*  The offensive line wasn’t helping and Brandon Bolden, who started his first game as a Pat, missed a key block early that lead to one of 3 Tampa sacks in the game.

*  The Pats punted on their first three possessions.

*  Tampa seemed to move the ball with ease.  They missed a chip shot field goal and scored on another chip shot to lead 3-0 after the first quarter.

THEN THE 2ND QUARTER BEGAN AND THINGS GOT BETTER

*  The Pats scored 17 unanswered points in the second quarter and the game was all but over.  They ended up scoring 23 straight, since they shut out the Bucs for the final three quarters.

*  The Bucs reverted to the same team they were in their 1st two games

*  Brady suddenly found his rhythm and throws to Aaron Dobson, Julien Edelman & Kenbrell Thompkins started to hit more than they missed

*  Thompkins scored two TDs, one in the end zone and one he caught just outside and made a nice move to get in

* The combination of Blount, Ridley and Bolden started to run with authority

Aqib Talib had his 3rd interception of the year with 11 seconds left in the first half, which led to…

*  …Stephen Gostkowski converting a 53 yard field goal (he was 3-3 on the day) with seconds left in the first half.

*  The D kept Doug Martin in check.  He did end up with 88 yards on 20 carries for a 4.4 average, but was never a factor in the game.

Josh Freeman reverted to….Josh Freeman. Nuff Said.

THE FINAL SCORE WAS DECEPTIVE

The Pats actually had at least 3 more chances to score, but left points on the field.

1)  Brady had both Thompkins and Edelman wide open behind the Tampa D for an easy TD.  Instead, after the play action fake handoff to Ridley he threw an incomplete sideline pass to a well cover Zach Sudfeld.

2)  Later Brady kept his eyes locked on Sudfeld in the Red Zone as he released the ball.  Tampa SS Mark Baron read his eyes and picked it off in the end zone. After the game Brady said he “would see that play in his dreams.”

3)  The Pats had the ball deep in Tampa territory late in the game.  In the past this is when Bill Belichick poured it on, but not this time.  Four running plays turned the ball back to Tampa as time was running out.  You have to wonder if BB was taking it easy on his friend, Tampa (and former Rutgers) Coach Greg Schiano.

RANDOM THOUGHTS

*  It was reported before the game that Brady had texted former Pats Deion Branch and Brandon Lloyd to see if they were interested in coming back.  He denied having made contact with either in the post game press conference.

*  Brady had a TD pass (actually two in this game) for the 51st straight game.  He trails only Drew Brees, who had TD passes in 53 straight games and has a chance to catch him in just two weeks against Cincinnati.

Brandon Bolton started his 1st game as a Pat and amassed 100 yards (51 yards rushing, 49 yards receiving)

*  Thompkins scored his 1st (of many, hopefully) & 2nd NFL TDs

Pats had 3 sacks and applied good pressure throughout the game

*  The D held Josh Freeman under 50% passing. Never mind, forget that one, he’s under 50% for the year…no big deal!)

*  Aqib Talib did a good job defending Vincent  Jackson, who left the game injured late in the 3rd quarter (3 receptions for 34 yards and 1 drop).

*  Red Zone efficiency was OK (2 for 5 for 40%).  A little deceptive, as they made no attempt to score on their last possession.  Still have a long way to go.

*  The Bucs came in the most penalized team (accepted penalties) in the NFL, but the Pats had more penalties in this game then the Bucs did (Pats 6 for 50 yards, Bucs 4 for 48)

*  Pats  held Bucs to 35% on 3rd downs (5 for 14) and 0 for 4 on 4th down

*  Bucs held Pats to 40% on 3rd (6 for 15).  Pats were 1 for 1 when they actually went for it on 4th down (stats 1 for 2 because late in game they just turned the ball over without going for first down)

*  The Pats are 3-0 for the first time since 2007 (the almost perfect season)

*  The supposedly “weak” division actually has looked pretty good so far & the Pats may have their first real challenge with the Dolphins (3-0) looking like they have improved dramatically.

*  I don’t know about you, but I think the NFL has really gone overboard on all the fines.  It’s football guys.  Let them tackle the guy with the ball without worrying about their pocketbook on every play.

A FACT YOU DIDN”T WANT TO KNOW

On the Dan Patrick show Monday morning former Patriot Rodney Harrison acknowledged that it is not uncommon for players to pee in their pants during the game.  He said he had done it and his teammates would confirm. Since you have to be ready at all times, you can’t go back inside during the game so you have no choice. BET THAT’S UNCOMFORTABLE!

I’ll take a closer look at the Falcons game later.  Meanwhile, enjoy the win in a game many thought the Pats were ripe for losing (Not me, I predicted 21-10 win in “PATS GO 3-0 blog before the game).

WRAP UP

Really looking forward to next Sunday night’s match-up of Pats and Falcons.

The comments on this blog are my opinions and I welcome all comments pro & con.  Debate is good.  Differing opinions are good.  Disagreement with me is…not good!

 

Have a great week.  If you like this blog please share it with your friends.

If you are a tweeter I’d appreciate a re-tweet.

Tags:  Atlanta Falcons  Steven Gostkowski  Aqib Talihe Pats are 3-0 for the first time s…  Aaron Dobson  Kenbrell Thompkins

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HERE COMES OCTOBER

Originally posted on snowdonblog:

  • Nights are cooler. Break out the blankets. Time to cuddle
  • Leaves start changing color.  Get the rake out of the shed.  Leaf peepers are coming from everywhere!
  • Baseball play-offs are just around the corner.  Sox haven’t been selling out during the season, but don’t expect that to continue in post season…this isn’t Tampa!
  • Patriot’s are a soft 2-0 & Brady hasn’t been Brady.  That’s not going to continue either

LET’S START WITH THE SOX.

What we all thought was a rebuilding year has turned into a season in which their longest losing streak is 3 games.  How about that sport’s fans. 

As I write this they have the best record in baseball. 

PITCHING

Lester is pitching like an ace.  Bucholtz has a microscopic ERA & pitching almost as well as he did before he tweaked his shoulder.  Uehara just gave up his first base runner (and run)…

View original 608 more words

HERE COMES OCTOBER

  • Nights are cooler. Break out the blankets. Time to cuddle
  • Leaves start changing color.  Get the rake out of the shed.  Leaf peepers are coming from everywhere!
  • Baseball play-offs are just around the corner.  Sox haven’t been selling out during the season, but don’t expect that to continue in post season…this isn’t Tampa!
  • Patriot’s are a soft 2-0 & Brady hasn’t been Brady.  That’s not going to continue either

LET’S START WITH THE SOX.

What we all thought was a rebuilding year has turned into a season in which their longest losing streak is 3 games.  How about that sport’s fans. 

As I write this they have the best record in baseball. 

PITCHING

Lester is pitching like an ace.  Bucholtz has a microscopic ERA & pitching almost as well as he did before he tweaked his shoulder.  Uehara just gave up his first base runner (and run) since Ortiz was a teenager (slight exaggeration, but you get the point).  Peavy has been steady.  They finally scored some runs for Lackey in what was his poorest performance of the season. The world is good & the Sox are ready to kick butt in the playoffs with this staff.  How’s that for optimism?

HITTING

It’s hard to believe, but this team won 9 straight games against lefties before a loss the other night.  We were all questioning their right handed power while this was happening.  Guess it hasn’t been a problem, huh?  They lead the league in runs scored & run differential despite being shut out 10 times…how can that be?  Top to bottom there is no automatic out.  Ellsbury should be back shortly.  With him leading off, Victorino batting 2nd, Pedroia 3rd & Ortiz clean-up they match up against just about anybody. Bring on your aces, anybody.

Alright, a little hyperbole there.  I know I sound a little cocky, but I’m excited about this team. And, as I said in an earlier post…I LIKE this team!  I know I have to keep it in check some…at my age the heart may give out before the real games begin.

HOW ABOUT THOSE PATS

Despite scoring less total points in the 1st two games than they used to in a half, they are 2-0 and about to play an offensively challenged Tampa Bay team that leads the league in penalties Sunday in Foxboro.  Brady has been inconsistent.  The WRs have dropped more than they caught. The TE’s are dead last in receptions & lead the NFL TEs in drop percentage! The OL has been, at best, mediocre. Ridley didn’t play after critical fumbles in game 1 (I know he was just charged with 1, but was called down on another) and came close to another in game 2 on a bobbled pitch from Brady.

SMILE.   All this & they are still 2-0!

Things are about to get better. Gronkowski will be back shortly (possibly this Sunday).  Amendola doesn’t need surgery and is back practicing.  Thompkins, despite looking like a rookie (oh, he is!) is on pace to have more receptions and yardage than Lloyd had last year (bet you didn’t know that).  Sudfeld is healthy again and should help out the TE pass catching numbers (as long as he doesn’t have to block too much).

The defense has been pretty good, even if it was against two rookie QBs.  They had four sacks in game two along with a ton of pressures against the J-E-T-S.  They also forced four turnovers while having none of their own.

HOCKEY  ANYONE?

The Bruins are just around the corner and look stronger than last year, when they played in the finals for the Stanley Cup.  Despite losing Horton, which hurt, and Seguin , which did not hurt, they have stronger, more reliable line-combinations and the defense, which was good, will still be solid.  And, have you seen what the PP did the other night?  This team should go deep in the play offs again barring any major injuries.  The Spoked Wheel is ready to roll.

AND THEN THERE’S BASKETBALL

Well, you can’t have everything.  This years Celtics are playing for a high draft choice.  The last time I remember they did that they lost out on Tim Duncan and continued to be bad for years.  Nuff said!

So, to wrap it up…BRING ON OCTOBER!  Boston’s fans are ready.

Until next time, hope you enjoyed this blogAs always, I welcome your comments. If you have a twitter account you can follow me at #SnowdonBob.

THE BEST TIME OF YEAR IN SPORTS

Originally posted on snowdonblog:

Fall is by far the best season for sports fans!

Let’s see, you have:

  • Baseball races & Playoffs
  • NFL
  • NHL teams start practice
  • College Football
  • NBA starts

RED SOX

Could anyone ask any more from this years team?  At first we thought it was a “rebuilding year.” As the year moved on we began to think “maybe….” Then it was “If they can just get thru this series.”  Next came “Who’s the ace of this staff?” And FINALLY it became “Damn, this team is for real.” Let’s just enjoy them.

After the last few years, it was easy to stop liking the Sox.  You still followed them out of loyalty…but you didn’t really like them.  Then they got rid of lot of the “big $$$” players and signed a lot of, what you thought were, “Good Clubhouse Guys” with not as much talent.

Boy, were we wrong! These guys can…

View original 370 more words

THE BEST TIME OF YEAR IN SPORTS

Fall is by far the best season for sports fans!

Let’s see, you have:

  • Baseball races & Playoffs
  • NFL
  • NHL teams start practice
  • College Football
  • NBA starts

RED SOX

Could anyone ask any more from this years team?  At first we thought it was a “rebuilding year.” As the year moved on we began to think “maybe….” Then it was “If they can just get thru this series.”  Next came “Who’s the ace of this staff?” And FINALLY it became “Damn, this team is for real.” Let’s just enjoy them.

After the last few years, it was easy to stop liking the Sox.  You still followed them out of loyalty…but you didn’t really like them.  Then they got rid of lot of the “big $$$” players and signed a lot of, what you thought were, “Good Clubhouse Guys” with not as much talent.

Boy, were we wrong! These guys can really play…and root for each other…and seem to enjoy playing the game.  And guess what?  They are also pretty good on the field.  No Superstars, just a bunch of good players having fun together.  What a concept.

Yeah, they have Petey and Ortiz who have had their usual good years, but players we were questioning also started having fun too.  Lester….Lackey….Ellsbury…and the beat goes on.

Players don’t have to like each other to perform, but it is sure more fun to watch them when they seem to.  Uehara, Gomez, Victorino, Peavy, Carp & the rest have made a huge difference in the “likeability” of this year’s team.  Than there’s Nava & Salty having career years. Middlebrooks not pouting when he is sent down & returning with a purpose.

Hey, “I like them again!”

You can’t say enough about what Uehara has done. Not only does he make the save, but he makes it look easy. Who was the last Sox closer you could say that about?

They may not win the World Series this year (however, they could), but I’m now enjoying them as a team…and it’s fun.  How about you?

PATRIOTS

Are you ready?  Like the Sox, this year’s team is a lot different than what we’ve come to expect..

  • 14 rookies!
  • 7 Undrafted Free Agents
  • A whole new cast of receivers
  • No Wes Welker
  • No Aaron Hernandez

Despite that, they have some of the “Old Timers” still playing great.  Wilfork…oh yeah, and a guy named Brady.

Gronkowski looks like he’s close to coming back & that’s good.

Their depth on the defensive line, safety & corner back is real thin & that’s bad.

The rookies WR’s look to be gaining Brady’s trust quickly & that’s good.

The rookies are rookies, & rookies usually are inconsistent.  That’s bad.

There’s Tom Brady & that’s always good.

There’s a possible suspension coming for Alfonso Dennard & that’s bad

With all that said, this should be another interesting year for Pat’s fans.  Some real highs, but also some real question marks.  Bring it on…I’m ready!

Well, that’s it for this blog. Hope you enjoyed it.  I’ll welcome all comments, both good and bad (but I’ll like the good more!).

Bob