Archive - Sports Article
August 20th, 2013
PROVIDENCE â€” Perhaps thereâ€™s no way getting around it. Coming up with a realignment proposal that soothes the Rhode Island Interscholastic Leagueâ€™s masses is not as simple or straightforward as snapping oneâ€™s fingers.
That said, a few ruffled feathers has not impeded the realignment committee branch of the Rhode Island Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (RIIAAA) from coming up with a solution that on the surface could help foster the kind of harmony that has been elusive whenever this particular topic is mentioned.
PAWTUCKET â€” Is Xander Bogaerts really and truly ready for the big leagues â€“ this after spending a little more than 10 weeks at Triple-A Pawtucket?
PAWTUCKET â€” Clayton Mortensenâ€™s 2013 season has featured a wide range of emotions.
From making Bostonâ€™s Opening Day roster to landing on the disabled list with a right groin strain to getting designated for assignment for the first time ever, the 28-year-old Mortensen is living baseball proof that what doesnâ€™t kill you makes you stronger. Moving past what seemingly must feel like a lifetimeâ€™s worth of transactions that were compartmentalized into a short period has perhaps been reconcilable thanks to the right-handed pitcherâ€™s new role with the Pawtucket Red Sox.
Everyone has to start somewhere.
Beginning Monday, high school football coaches and players around Rhode Island will officially take the first steps â€“ baby ones, mind you â€“ in a journey that both parties hope culminates with the following symbolic gesture: Dumping a large bucket of ice water on the Super Bowl-winning coach come the first weekend in December.
For Ryan Kalish, embarking on the comeback trail has featured an eerily similar narrative.
Thereâ€™s the surgery aspect, which Kalish has down pat by now. Since diving for a ball in center field at McCoy Stadium on April 21, 2011 â€“ a play the 25-year-old dubs â€śa stroke of bad luckâ€ť â€“ the onetime Red Sox outfield prospect has been subjected to one corrective procedure after another. Yearning to feel like his old self has proven a tough road to hoe, his left shoulder and neck never quite getting back in sync.
PAWTUCKET â€” Thereâ€™s light at the end of the tunnel as far as David Ross and his minor-league rehab assignment is concerned.
The veteran catcher is scheduled to be behind the plate for back-to-back nine-inning games for the PawSox on Friday and Saturday before visiting concussion specialist Dr. Micky Collins on Sunday.
If everything checks out accordingly, Ross would rejoin the Red Sox Monday night in San Francisco.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Every two years, Smith & Streetâ€™s SportsBusiness Journal releases its annual rankings of the top minor-league markets in the country.
According to the publicationâ€™s 2013 findings that were unveiled earlier this week, the Providence/Pawtucket market weighed in at a solid 12th out of the 229 markets that were scrutinized and taken under advisement. Two cities that are home to International League clubs finished 1-2 in this yearâ€™s compellation with Toledo, Ohio grabbing top honors followed by Rochester, N.Y., which boasts four minor-league operations.
PAWTUCKET --- Itâ€™s been more than a month-and-a-half since the Pawtucket Red Sox strung together four wins in a row, but on Wednesday afternoon, they were able to extend their win streak at the expense of the Louisville Bats.
Three-run homers from Xander Bogaerts and Mark Hamilton and a strong start from Clayton Mortensen enabled the defending International League champions to hold off a seventh-inning rally by the Bats and come away with a 6-5 win at McCoy Stadium.
PAWTUCKET â€“ There are two schools of thought regarding Will Middlebrooks and the third basemanâ€™s recent return to major-league duty.
Given the Red Sox were receiving zero in the way of offensive production at the hot corner following the departure of Jose Iglesias â€“ the post-July 31 non-waiver trading deadline saw Brock Holt and Brandon Snyder struggling to the tune of a combined .135 batting average (5-for-37) â€“ the ball club was more than justified in being in the market for an upgrade.
PAWTUCKET â€“ As Lincoln All-Stars' manager Matt Netto drove the 125-plus miles home to Central Falls from Bristol, Conn. late Saturday night, dozens upon dozens of â€śWhat ifs?â€ť flooded his mind â€“ how an extra-base hit with Braedon Carney on first with no one out in the third could've changed matters; how Patrick Gribbin could've scored after beating out a perfect bunt with two down in the fifth; how similar this defeat was to the one Lincoln suffered in this same scenario four years before.
Just when all seemed copacetic, serious doubts have crept in regarding this autumnâ€™s Rhode Island high school gridiron slate and the inclusion of a full complement of registered R.I. football officials.
BRISTOL, Conn. â€” Back on Monday afternoon, the Lincoln All-Stars suffered their first and only defeat of this long summer, an 8-1 decision to South Burlington, Vt., and they didnâ€™t look good doing it.
The previously-unbeaten squad uncharacteristically struck out seven times and committed a pair of errors in the ugly 8-1 defeat, causing parents and others to state to skipper Matt Netto that the team appeared downtrodden, like they didnâ€™t care about being in their lofty position.
As much as Mother Nature tried her best to put a damper on things Friday, Jamison Randall braved the wet weather and walked approximately eight holes at The Country Club, located in Brookline, Mass.
BRISTOL, Conn. â€“ It had been billed as a sensational pitcherâ€™s duel â€“ South Burlington, Vt. fireballer Ben Tate against Lincolnâ€™s crafty southpaw Kyle Marrapese.
The pair didnâ€™t disappoint, as they combined to whiff â€“ get this â€“ 19 foes.
In the end, however, Marrapese captured the battle, and it happened due to one precious, hellacious swing from teammate Steve Andrews.
PAWTUCKET â€” As difficult it is to get the word out, glean sponsors, attract teams from â€“ at the very least, from eastern half of the United States â€“ and put it all together for a premier event, Edd Pedro revels in it all.
Pedro, with the help of some family members and friends, is about to host his 10th annual â€śFight For A Cure Wiffle Ball Tournament and Mega-Raffleâ€ť at Slater Park beginning at 9 a.m. sharp Sunday.
BRISTOL, Conn. â€” As soon as Little League New England Regional Tournament officials asked the Lincoln All-Stars to walk to home plate to greet â€śDugout,â€ť the eventâ€™s mascot, Aaron DeSousa knew what was coming
Together with foe Rye, N.H., they performed the dance accompanying the tune prior to their contest, and it looked like they had a blast doing it.
â€śI remember other teams doing that from years before, when I was watching on TV,â€ť DeSousa said. â€śI kind of expected it once they called us over. While we were dancing, it took all the butterflies away. I just didnâ€™t feel as nervous.â€ť
FOXBORO â€” This is the time of year when the conversations between Texas childhood pals Will Middlebrooks and Ryan Mallett slow to a crawl.
On the surface, itâ€™s perfectly understandable.
Middlebrooksâ€™ baseball duties are in full bloom with two or possibly three months in his season remaining. With Mallett, the dog days of summer represent a hectic time, with practices and intra-squad scrimmages going hand in hand with film sessions and preseason football contests.
MINNEAPOLIS â€” The Boys & Girls Club of Pawtucket RBI Junior Division All-Stars fell behind 2-0 in the fifth inning before ultimately falling to Miami, Florida, 2-1, on Day 1 of the RBI Junior World Series.
Pawtucketâ€™s lone run came in the sixth inning when Steven Otis scored on a fielderâ€™s choice by Nick Gagnon. The locals loaded the bases with two down in the seventh but proved unable to capitalize.
BRISTOL, Conn. â€” Lincoln All-Starsâ€™ assistant coach Marty Gaughan Sr. had a feeling his team would face South Burlington, Vt. ace Sammy Premsagar in the third game of this Little League New England Regional Tournament on Monday afternoon.
Thatâ€™s why he took all necessary measures to prepare the kids offensively.
â€śThey say heâ€™s a real fireballer; thatâ€™s why I just spent the last hour pitching batting practice to them,â€ť he said perhaps 40 minutes before the tilt. â€śI was throwing them 100-mph heaters so theyâ€™d be ready.â€ť
BRISTOL, Conn. â€” Thankfully for Lincoln Little League, Brandon Lee is just one player.
The No. 3 hitter in Newton South Eastâ€™s lineup certainly did some damage Sunday, slugging two home runs with four RBI and two runs scored. Collectively, Lincoln was able to overcome the Herculean effort and knock off the Massachusetts representative. 14-8, in the second game round-robin play of the Little League New England Regional Tournament.
Both squads ended up spraying the ball all over Leon J. Breen Field, tallying 22 runs and 25 hits, including 10 extra base hits.