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07/03/2012 - 9:47am
Bard has efficient, effective outing
By: DJ Bean

Daniel Bard had his most encouraging outing of his Triple-A assignment Monday night, retiring the side on 10 pitches (eight strikes) against Rochester. All three batters he faced grounded out. 

It was the second straight day in which Bard threw for the PawSox. On Sunday, he threw 21 pitches (only nine strikes), giving up a hit and a run while walking two and throwing a wild pitch. Despite the poor performance, Bard told ESPNBoston that he felt good during the last three at-bats of the inning, so after exiting the game and throwing 15 more pitches in the bullpen, it was decided that he'd get into Monday's game as well. 

"He turned it loose," PawSox manager Arnie Beyeler said of Bard's performance Monday. "It was like, 'Hey, I quit caring and I'm just going to throw it.' His arm action tonight...

07/03/2012 - 8:31am
Report: Allen to meet with Heat, Clippers

The Celtics want Ray Allen back and for the moment they are in position to offer him the best deal -- $12 million over two years -- but they have competition. TNT's David Aldridge reports that Allen will meet with the Heat and Clippers and is also being pursued by the Grizzlies and Timberwolves. 

Miami can only off the taxpayer mid-level, a contract that starts at just over $3 million annually. The Grizzlies and Clippers can offer the full mid-level, a contract that starts at $5 million annually.

Per Aldridge, Allen is scheduled to meet with Miami on Thursday and the Clippers on Friday, so his recruitment could last well into the weekend. Players can't sign contracts until July 11, but they can reach verbal agreements.

For more Celtics news, visit the team page at weei.com/celtics....

07/03/2012 - 7:52am
Mashup: Heat struggle financially despite title

Heat owner Mickey Arison is celebrating an NBA championship, but he says the on-court success is not enough for the team to turn a profit.

"This is a hobby of passion, it's not a business," Arison told CNBC's Darren Rovell. "Every year in the building we've lost money aside from last year, under the old collective bargaining agreement, because of LeBron [James]."

Arison says the new CBA hurts his team because Miami isn't one of the bigger markets yet he has to share revenue due to his team's huge payroll (about $7 million over the $58 million cap this past season). Even the fact that the Heat have not paid rent in the 12 seasons they have played in county-owned American Airlines Arena isn't enough to put his team in the black.

"The reality is we're not a big market team," said Arison, who has owned the team since 1995. "Minnesota is a larger market than Miami. Where we find ourselves struggling is our local...

07/03/2012 - 1:39am
More neck woes for Matsuzaka in loss

Red Sox starter Daisuke Matsuzaka told reporters in Oakland that he is once again dealing with discomfort in his neck, a condition that afflicted him both in spring training and at the end of May, when he required a cortisone injection that prolonged his stay on the disabled list as he made his way back from Tommy John surgery. The right-hander said that he wasn't able to throw a bullpen session between starts, but believed that he could give the Red Sox a serviceable start. Instead, he was battered for five runs while pitching just one-plus inning, dropping to 0-3 with a 6.65 ERA on the year.

"Leading up to the start, my neck tightened up a little bit. I ended up not being able to throw a bullpen. I focused on getting myself in condition to be able to pitch tonight. I went out there tonight, but I ended up not being able to get my arm through," said Matsuzaka, whose fastball velocity was mostly in the high-80s. "[The injury is in]...

07/03/2012 - 1:05am
Daisuke done in: A's pound Matsuzaka

Daisuke Matsuzaka retired just three batters and was knocked out of the game in the second inning after allowing five runs as the Red Sox fell to the A's, 6-1. Matsuzaka permitted two homers, both to ex-Red Sox -- with Josh Reddick taking the right-hander deep in the first inning and Brandon Moss doing the same with a three-run last in the second that broke a 1-1 tie and gave Oakland a lead it would not relinquish -- and his velocity faded over the course of his 28-pitch night. He lacked power (his fastball was in the high-80s for much of the night, and he did not get a single swing and miss) and his control was a struggle, as he walked a pair.

While reliever Clayton Mortensen stabilized the game by limiting Oakland to a run in five innings, the Sox offense could muster almost nothing against Jarrod Parker and the Athletics bullpen. The team plated a run in the first when Daniel Nava led off with a double and Dustin Pedroia followed with an RBI single,...

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