Rich Levine's Red Sox Home Opener Live Blog


Rich Levine's Red Sox Home Opener Live Blog

Rich Levine's Opening Day Live Blog

In a little bit, the Red Sox will take the field at Fenway for the first time since September 21.

On that day, they dropped a close one to the Murderers Row Baltimore Orioles, 6-4. Josh Beckett picked up the loss. The immortal Clay Rapata registered the win. And in the 205 days since, life has gone from bad to worse to holy hell for the Sox.

You know what happened. We dont need to relive it here. But, as a result of what did happen, heres the reality that we live in today:

The Sox are going to get booed.

Maybe not individually. In fact, when it comes time for each player to be introduced before the game, Josh Becketts the only guy who will or should receive any sort of negative ovation. (Thats assuming they dont introduce John Lackey, and thats not to say some of player ovations wont be a little more subdued than theyre used to).

But, when they take the field as a team, when Carl Beane introduces Your 2012 Boston Red Sox! there will be boos. Maybe not across the board, but theyll be there. More than you ever could have imagined at any point over this past decade.

The boos will in some part be aimed towards the team, to the collective group of players who couldnt get in done down the stretch last season, havent got it done in the early going this season, and in the process have helped make our lives a living hell. But more than anything, the boos will be directed to the bozos in the background, pulling the strings and signing the checks. To the institution of the Boston Red Sox, which has failed so miserably on so many levels in the years since that first World Series win and especially in the months since last Septembers collapse.

For years and years, ownership screwed with their real fans. They alienated the people who stuck with this team when times were tough. But at the same time, back then, the Sox were winning, so what could you say? Why complain about what was going on behind the scenes when there was so much success right in front of your face?

Today, that success is gone. As a result, there will be a whole bunch of pent up booing on display. And theres only one thing the Sox can do to make it stop.


Becketts back on the mound, and Im back on the keyboard. Ready to relay all the action as it happens, complete with a little analysis, a little humor and, hopefully, minimal typos.

So, please follow along, and I hope you enjoy it.

If not, feel free to boo.

Butler imitates Brown with post-interception dance: 'Nothing personal'


Butler imitates Brown with post-interception dance: 'Nothing personal'

Malcolm Butler didn't mean any disrespect. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. 


When the Patriots corner picked off a Landry Jones pass in the first quarter -- one that was intended for receiver Antonio Brown -- Butler stood up in the end zone, faced the Heinz Field crowd, stuck one arm in the air a and gyrated like someone had attached jumper cables to his facemask. 

He was doing his best to mimick one of Brown's well-known touchdown dances.

"Me and Brown had conversation before," Butler said, "and it was a joke to him once I showed him how I do it. Much love for that guy. Nothing personal."

For Butler, it was the highlight of what was a productive afternoon. The third-year corner was asked to shadow Brown for much of the day, and he allowed Brown to catch five of nine targets for 94 yards. He also broke up a pair of passes intended for Brown's teammates.

“Stopping Antonio Brown, that’s impossible," Butler said. "You can’t stop him. You can only slow him down. I just went out there and tried to compete today . . . Great players are going to make plays but you have to match their intensity.”
Even on the longest throw from backup quarterback Landry Jones to Brown, a 51-yarder, it appeared as though Butler played the coverage called correctly. 

Butler lined up across from Brown and trailed him underneath as Brown worked his jway from the left side of the field to the right. Butler was looking for some help over the top in that scenario, seemingly, but because Brown ran across the formation, it was hard for the back end of the defense to figure out who would be helping Butler. 

Belichick admitted as much after the game. 

"He was on [Brown] a lot the way we set it up," Belichick said. "Look, they've got great players. They're tough to cover. They hit us on a couple over routes, in cut where they kind of ran away from the coverage that we had. 

"The plays were well designed. Good scheme, good thorws and obviously good routes by Brown. They got us on a couple, but I thought we competed hard. We battled all the way. We battled on third down. We battled in the red area. They made some. We made some, but they're good. They have a lot of good players."

And Brown, in particular, is about as close as it gets to unstoppable in the NFL. Butler found that out in Week 1 of last year when he matched up with Brown in his first game as a starter, giving up nine catches for 133 yards to the All-Pro wideout. 

Though Sunday might not have been perfect for Butler, it was better than that day about 14 months ago. And at times, it was worth dancing about. 

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Seahawks, Cardinals miss OT FGs, tie 6-6


SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Seahawks, Cardinals miss OT FGs, tie 6-6

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Seattle's Stephen Hauschka and Arizona's Chandler Catanzaro missed short field goals that would have won the game in overtime and the Seahawks and Cardinals settled for a 6-6 tie Sunday night.

Hauschka's 27-yard field goal was wide left with seven seconds left after Catanzaro's 24-yarder bounced off the left upright.

The tie was the Cardinals' first since Dec. 7, 1986, a 10-10 draw at Philadelphia when the franchise was based in St. Louis. It was the first for the Seattle since entering the NFL in 1976.

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