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07/22/2012 - 8:39pm
Reports: C's invite Christmas, Smith to camp

The Celtics agreed to contracts with Summer League standouts Dionte Christmas and Jamar Smith in addition to veteran center Jason Collins, according to multiple reports.

Collins is expected to sign a veteran minimum deal to replace the departed Greg Stiemsma, while shooting guards Christmas and Smith have been invited to C's training camp, presumably on non-guaranteed contracts.

"Wanna thank the @Celtics for giving me this opportunity to make my dream come true," tweeted Christmas, a 6-foot-5, 205-pound guard who averaged 19.5 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.5 steals as a senior for Temple in 2008-09. He has played in Israel, the Czech Republic and Greece since.

The 7-foot, 33-year-old Collins, known as a Dwight Howard stopper defensively, averaged just 1.3 points and 1.6 points in 30 games for the Hawks last season. He averaged 2.4 and 2.4 in 17 minutes a night over five games in the first round of the playoffs against the...

07/22/2012 - 5:49pm
Lester: 'I've let my team down a lot'

In the wake of the worst outing of his major league career, Red Sox lefty Jon Lester didn't pull any punches when describing his performance on Sunday. Lester allowed 11 runs on 10 hits, including a career-worst four homers in a 15-7 loss at the hands of the Jays Sunday at Fenway.

"I think it pretty much describes itself," Lester said. "I don't really need to have any words for it."

But Lester expanded upon the outing that was disastrous from his very first pitch, a fastball that was driven over the Green Monster by Brett Lawrie.

"It's never good, it's embarrassing," Lester said. "I've let my team down a lot this year. It's hard for me to walk around this clubhouse and look guys in the eye right now. I'm not pitching well. I'm not doing my job. Guys scored seven runs today. We should win this game. Like I said, it's embarrassing. That's all I can really say about it."

Lester, who is now 5-8 on...

07/22/2012 - 4:05pm
Battered: Lester shelled, Sox swept

In the worst start of his major league career, Jon Lester was shelled for four home runs, a career-high 11 runs and 10 hits in just four-plus innings as the Jays routed the Red Sox, 15-7, completing a three-game sweep and send Boston reeling into a six-game road trip through Texas and New York. The sweep dropped the Red Sox (48-48) into the AL East cellar all alone, a half-game behind Toronto.

The Jays wasted no time in making life miserable for Lester as Brett Lawrie rocketed the first pitch of the game - a 93 MPH fastball down the middle - over the Green Monster for a leadoff home run. The Jays kept up the assault with a walk and a single. Edwin Encarnacion and J.P. Arencibia doubled and Jeff Mathis executed a safety squeeze as the Jays built their lead to 5-0. Lester allowed four hits, walked one and threw a wild pitch on strike three as the Jays batted around. 

The Red Sox got right back into the game in the bottom of the inning as Adrian...

07/22/2012 - 11:07am
'Good' signs for Bailey, Atchison

Relievers Andrew Bailey and Scott Atchison are getting close to pitching in minor league games as part of their rehab from forearm injuries, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said before Sunday's series finale with the Blue Jays. 

Atchison went on the disabled list on July 15 with tightness in his right forearm while Andrew Bailey has missed the entire season to date following right thumb surgery to repair the UCL ligament in his right hand and forearm. Atchison is on deck to return to game action next weekend, possibly for Triple-A Pawtucket. 

"He's good," Valentine said of Atchison, who is 2-1 with a 1.76 ERA in 37 games for the Red Sox this season. "He's going to throw on Friday in a minor league game. He has no pain. He's throwing really well. One or a couple, just to see how the ball comes out of his hand.

"Andrew Bailey threw real well in the bullpen, off the mound, 100 percent. He'll throw batting...

07/22/2012 - 10:10am
Lineup: Crawford, Middlebrooks sit

Jacoby Ellsbury is back in the lineup for the Red Sox on Sunday and Daniel Nava will receive a second straight start, this one in right field, but the Red Sox will have both Carl Crawford and Will Middlebrooks on the bench as each gets a day off against Blue Jays right-hander Henderson Alvarez. Ryan Sweeney -- who is 4-for-10 with three doubles against Alvarez -- will be in the lineup in right, while Nick Punto gets the start at third base.

Jon Lester will be on the mound for the Red Sox, looking to stop a skid that has dragged his record down to 5-7 with a 4.80 ERA. He will throw to Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who is back in the lineup after his three-run homer on Saturday.

For complete batter vs. pitcher matchup histories, click here. For comprehensive team coverage, visit...

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