Patriots

Sox signees: Who you should pay attention to

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Sox signees: Who you should pay attention to

You can wade through the release to see the names of the 12 players the Red Sox signed to minor-league contracts (and invited to spring training) on Tuesday, but there are some a bit more interesting than others:
JESSE CARLSON: The ex-Blue Jay, whose signing was reported a week or two ago, could -- if healthy -- provide some left-handed help to the bullpen.
CARLOS SILVA: Remember him? He once went 14-8 for the Twins (granted, it was 2004) and won his first eight decisions for the Cubs in his only season (2010) in Chicago. But he finished that year 10-6, was released at the end of spring training last season, blasted the Cubs on his way out of town, and spent the first half last year in the Yankees' minor-league system before being released again because of what were described as "shoulder problems". If the problems are over, he'd be a classic "depth" signing: Someone who'd stay at Pawtucket until openings arose in Boston.
And if you think those types of players aren't important, think back to who was starting some crucial games during last September's collapse.
BRANDON DUCKWORTH, CHARLIE HAEGER, RICH HILL, TONY PENA JR., NATE SPEARS: They're all coming back after spending at least parts of last season in the Sox' system.

Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

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Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

BOSTON – At the end of the day, it was simply a game where the Bruins allowed themselves to get outworked in the third period and overtime. 

The B’s held a three-goal lead in the second period and still enjoyed a two-goal lead in the third period, but eventually dropped a frustrating, futile 5-4 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden on Saturday night. It was clear to most speaking after the game that the Bruins eased up on the gas pedal once they’d scored their fourth goal of the game in the second period, and simply watched as the Sabres stomped all over them in the game’s second half. 

“I think we might have been a little bit too scared to play [in the third period], you know? We tried to just flip the pucks away, and didn’t make any plays trying to get it in the zone. Instead we should have just kept going like we did in the first two periods,” said David Pastrnak, who scored a pair of goals early in the loss to allow the Bruins to build up the three-goal lead. “Obviously we’re disappointed. We got one point. I think we didn’t play our game in the third period. We kind of stopped playing and they were all over us, and you know, it’s on us. We were the ones that gave them their point, but the first two periods were good. It’s just another learning session.”

To Pastrnak’s point, the Bruins were outshot by a 15-6 margin in the final 20 minutes of regulation and 21-6 overall in the third period and overtime prior to Ryan O’Reilly’s game-winner during 3-on-3 play. It was at this point the Bruins certainly missed stalwart stay-at-home defensemen Adam McQuaid and Kevan Miller in the D-zone, and fell short of qualified penalty killers while trying to burn off a Brandon Carlo interference call at the end of the third period. 

All of that caught up to them once the Bruins loosened their grip on the Sabres, but certainly the feeling is that the loss should’ve been avoidable even if some of the circumstances made it difficult for the Black and Gold. It also should have been avoidable against a Sabres hockey club that was dreadful last season, and is again one of the doormats in the Atlantic Division in the early going thus far. 

“Those are the games you can’t lose. We obviously didn’t do the job there in the third and close it out, but we’re going to have to regroup and work on our game and be better for the next one,” said Brad Marchand. “We didn’t play the game we needed to play. We relaxed a bit and we started losing a few battles in the wrong areas, and you know, they just played better than we did.”

It’s mystifying that any team would need a crash-and-born loss like Saturday night in order to learn any lessons moving forward, and it certainly might have been a different story for the Bruins if they weren’t missing a few big defensive pieces. But that’s not how it went down for the Black and Gold as they sagged under rising pressure from the Sabres, and simply stopped working when the chips were on the table late in Saturday night’s game.