Tony Massarotti

Mazz: Did the door just open for the return of Mookie Betts?

Translation: the pandemic and its effects would have major free agency ramifications for a player who has been intent on going to the market from seemingly the day he set foot in the big leagues. And while the likelihood is that Betts would choose a one-year contract and hit the market when all economies are healthier, could the offer like the one the Red Sox presented him last spring be back in play?

Mazz: On Opening Day ... an opening salvo

David Price (and those like him) makes his $31 million annually, fully guaranteed, and takes an eternity between pitches. And then, when the notion of the pitch clock comes up, he doesn’t merely hold on to the ball. They hold on to the ball and defiantly tell you that they have no intention of changing, directly spitting into the face of the person who matters most: you.

Mazz: For Belichick and the Patriots, it feels like a massive rebuild

By Tony Massarotti, 98.5 The Sports Hub If we’re being honest, this is not how anyone envisioned it, least of all Bill Belichick, who started preparing for the departure of Tom Brady almost six years ago. That’s when Belichick selected Jimmy Garoppolo in the second round of the NFL draft while essentially telling us that…

Mazz: The end of an era

Along the way, of course, there was always the possibility he would leave. Maybe even there was the probability. And yet, as news of Tom Brady’s departure broke this morning, there was s suddenness that felt, well, final.

Mazz: The one question the Red Sox still haven't answered

If the Red Sox knew they had to be under the luxury tax threshold as far back as the fall of 2018, why did ownership “green-light” the combined $213 million signings ($43 million annually in luxury tax) of Chris Sale and Nathan Eovaldi, two pitchers with histories of breaking down?

Mazz: The real story of this trade? It's not about Mookie Betts - it's about Chaim Bloom

Does Chaim Bloom really know what he is doing? Did the Red Sox get even remotely decent value for Mookie, even if Betts did have just one year remaining on his contract? Are the Red Sox merely cycling through another GM (and manager) since the departure of Theo Epstein (and Terry Francona), or are they actually building something again with a longer-term, more sustainable model?

Mazz: On Jimmy Garoppolo, Kyle Shanahan and the failings of the helicopter coach

Systems like the ones run by McVay and Shanahan are designed to make decision-making easier for relatively inexperienced NFL quarterbacks, but they are also restrictive. And when it inevitably comes time for the quarterbacks to make a play – to make a snap-decision – they have proven incapable, at least in part because Daddy has been protecting them and making all of the decisions for them. Welcome to the world of helicopter coaching.

Mazz: Time to end the Mookie Betts saga

The Red Sox have been a year behind in most every offer while Betts has sought a contract that would effectively make him the second-highest-paid player in the game – behind only Trout by what amounts to relative pocket change. Pretty bold of Mookie don’t you think? (He’s not that close to Trout.) And pretty laughable of the Red Sox, right?

Mazz: You know what? Baseball sucks right now

Think about it: the NFL, NBA and NHL all have instituted changes in recent years to shorten delays, making the games faster, more entertaining. Meanwhile baseball can’t even get the pitchers to throw the ball. If pitchers like Price and Justin Verlander are going to give Manfred the finger when he talks about a pitch clock, what chance does the commissioner possibly have of getting the positional players to stop stealing signs?

Mazz: Cora has Red Sox, Henry, Bloom backed into a corner

Obviously, there’s a lot to address here, particularly as the Red Sox look to shed payroll under a first-time general manager who must think he just bought a ticket on the Hindenburg. David Price is chronically unhappy. Mookie Betts probably wants out. Your $80 million starting rotation remains an unknown and your manager is in the eye of a historic cheating scandal.

Mazz: Upon further review, Cora has to pay

Let’s make something clear here: organizational penalties are great and all, but they’re impersonal. The penalties always mean a little more when someone specific is paying the price. This brings us to Hinch and, more specifically, Cora, who is now starting to look downright devious.

Mazz: Is meeting with Buffalo another beginning or The End?

So here we are now, in Week 16 of what could be Tom Brady’s final season in New England, and the Patriots have one final hurdle to clear in the regular season: the Bills. Buffalo might effectively sit between Brady and The End, between New England and a final Super Bowl run or the Patriots and an ominous appearance on wildcard weekend.

Mazz: Unfortunately, size matters for Celtics

In the fourth quarter last night, Joel Embiid torched the Celtics for 16 points, eight of which came from the free-throw line. Embiid made shots from the perimeter and in the paint, and the Celtics really couldn’t do a thing about it.