SOME POSITIVES WITH FARRELL
Whether or not John Farrell will be successful as the Boston Red Sox manager is anyone’s guess. But he sounds like he is putting himself and the team in a good position to succeed.
Here are five positives so far:
1. He said he will stress an open line of communication between him, the pitching coach and the pitchers, but also will stress that the pitchers cannot bypass the pitching coach. Farrell is not only establishing a chain of command but also stressing strong communication, something that was lacking last year.
2. Farrell has stressed he will try to let positional players know at least one day in advance when they will not start a ballgame. This show Farrell will be well-prepared strategically well in advance. Plus, many baseball players are creatures of habit who want to know what they are going to do be doing that day before arriving at the park. That said, Bobby Valentine often waited until the players arrived at the park to tell them what they would be doing that day.
3. Farrell wants his pitchers to be aggressive early in counts. This is good news as certain Red Sox pitchers have lacked some aggressiveness the past couple of years.
4. The new manager stressed that the team has a good core of returning players, including the pitching to a degree, adding that the starting pitching needs some improvement. He seems to believe his team is capable of winning with the Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz at the front of the rotation as long as some adjustments are made. I think it’s possible, too.
5. Farrell, the Red Sox pitching coach from 2007-10, said he saw very obvious flaws in Lester’s delivery this past year. That makes me think he can help Lester rebound in 2013.
LOVE WINDHAM’S DISCIPLINE
One of the toughest parts of being a high school football backup player is staying behind the second white line on the sidelines, and therefore, not getting too close to the playing field.
Typically, at least one of the coaches on a high school staff has to tell the non-starters to back up about 20 times a game. Sometimes, refs threaten to penalize a team if the players do not back up some.
I have no idea what Windham head coach Bill Raycraft said to his players at the beginning of the year about staying away from the playing field but whatever he said worked.
I’ve covered three Windham football games this year and none of the Jaguars ever get too close to the sideline. They stay back and show tremendous discipline — the type of discipline I never showed when I played high school football at 5-foot-3, 120-pounds.
Check out Syracuse.com to see an interesting story on Celtics rookie Kris Joseph, who averaged a team-leading 13.4 points per game for the Orange last year.
The story is titled “Kris Joseph, likely to make Boston’s 15-man roster, is living the dream.”
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
The San Francisco 49ers (5-2, 2-1 on road) play at the Arizona Cardinals (4-3, 3-1 at home) today at 8:30 p.m. on Monday Night Football.
It should be a low-scoring game as San Francisco has allowed just 14.3 points per game this season (second in the NFL) and Arizona has allowed just 16.9 points per game (fourth in NFL).
NLCS MVP Marco Scutaro isn’t responsible at all for the Red Sox’ 2011 September.
The San Francisco Giants shortstop batted .387 with a .438 on-base percentage, two homers, 21 RBIs, 18 runs and 12 doubles in 26 games last September.
Great to see a hard working player like him in the right place this year.
MERRIMACK GAMES MOVED
Both the Merrimack men’s and women’s soccer quarterfinal games have been moved from today to Wednesday because of Hurricane Sandy.
The top-seeded men will host eighth-seeded AIC at 7 p.m. while the the No. 4-seeded women will host No. 5 seed Franklin Pierce at 4 p.m.
The men’s basketball team’s home exhibition game against Laval University has been moved to 4 p.m. today.