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12/02/2011 - 3:39pm
Cherington: 'I've spoken with' Beckett

Speaking on the Mut & Merloni show, Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said that he has talked to Josh Beckett on more than one occasion this offseason and remains optimistic the pitcher will be in a good mindset heading into the 2012 season.

"I've spoken with Josh at least a couple of times since the season ended," Cherington said. "I really have a great deal of respect for Josh. He's carried us at certain points during his time with the Red Sox. When he's on the mound I trust him, and we have a good chance to win that game when he's out there. You guys know he has a lot of pride, he's competitive. I don't believe anyone should be judged on one moment. We should be judge people by the body of work in a sort of larger picture, and through that lens Josh has been an incredible player for us, an incredible pitcher for us, an incredible part of our team for a long time. We've achieved things at a team in large part because of his...

12/02/2011 - 3:38pm
Cherington: 'Don't think' Sveum was a fit

Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington, during an appearance on the Mut & Merloni show, said that while former Brewers hitting coach and new Cubs manager Dale Sveum emerged as an early front-runner in the Sox' managerial search, he did not believe that in the end the former Sox third base coach would have represented the right fit for the Sox. Cherington suggested that experience did become a separating factor, to the point where Bobby Valentine (armed with 15 seasons of experience as a big league manager in the majors and seven more in Japan's NPB) was hired over Gene Lamont, a veteran of eight seasons as a manager with the White Sox and Pirates.

"I don’t think [Sveum would have been hired at the end of the process]," said Cherington. "I think the way this evolved, as we got deeper into the process, this was a learning experience for me. This was the first time I’ve run a managerial search process. I was involved in a much...

12/02/2011 - 3:34pm
Cashman issues challenge to Valentine

Yankees GM Brian Cashman would like to see new Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine match him in a daredevil feat.

Cashman, who on Sunday will rappel down the side of a building in Stamford, Conn., as part of the city's "Heights of Lights" festival -- something that he will be doing for the second straight year -- suggested that he would like to see Stamford native Valentine join him in the undertaking next year.

“I publicly challenge Bobby Valentine to join me on the building,” Cashman told reporters on Friday while engaged in a practice run down a building in Stamford's Landmark Square. “Landmark Square, first week of December. Be there. 2012.”

Cashman, who knows Valentine well from his time as manager of the New York Mets...

12/02/2011 - 1:34pm
Celtics open NBA season on Christmas

The NBA made it official: The Celtics will open the season on Christmas Day at Madison Square Garden against the Knicks at noon. It will be the first NBA game of the 2011-12 season and will be broadcast on TNT.

Full schedules aren't expected to be announced until next week. Here's the rest of the Christmas slate:

Miami at Dallas (ABC), 2:30 p.m.

Chicago at Lakers (ABC), 5 p.m.

Orlando at Oklahoma City (ESPN), 8 p.m.

Clippers at Golden State (ESPN), 10:30 p.m.

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

 

 

 


12/02/2011 - 1:34pm
Only Vollmer, Spikes miss Pats practice

FOXBORO -- All but two players were accounted for as the Patriots practice in sweats and shells on Friday inside Gillette Stadium. Sebastian Vollmer (foot/back) and Brandon Spikes (knee) were not spotted as the team continued preparations for the Colts this Sunday in Foxboro. 

Spikes attended the walkthrough on Wednesday but missed the next two days as he continues treatment for his right knee, injured in the Nov. 6 loss to the Giants. Vollmer has missed practice all week after suffering an ankle injury in last Sunday's win in Philadelphia. 

Coach Bill Belichick said safety Patrick Chung and other injured players like Devin McCourty continue to "make progress" but stopped short of commiting to their return this Sunday against Indianapolis. 

For more, visit the Patriots team page at weei.com/patriots and the blog It Is What It Is...

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