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Monday’s Morning Mashup: Tim Tebow reportedly set to sign 1-year deal with Eagles

Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Orioles at Red Sox, 11:05 a.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Yankees at Tigers, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL playoffs: Rangers at Penguins, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL playoffs: Blues at Wild, 8 p.m. (CNBC)
NHL playoffs: Ducks at Jets, 9 p.m. (NHL Network)
Road racing: Boston Marathon, 7 a.m. (WBZ-TV), 8:30 a.m. (Universal Sports Network)

AROUND THE WEB:

Tim Tebow apparently is going to get another chance at the NFL, as multiple reports out of Philadelphia indicate the Eagles will sign the quarterback to a one-year deal.

According to ESPN, Tebow flew to Philadelphia on Sunday night and will sign a minimum-level contract and join the team for its offseason program that starts Monday.

Tebow worked out for the team last month, and there has been speculation that coach Chip Kelly would be willing to give the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner an opportunity to play in his high-octane offense. Kelly later said at the NFL meetings, “I’ve always been a fan of Tim.”

The Eagles already have four quarterbacks on their roster: Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley and G.J. Kinne. With Tebow they will have three QBs who rank in the bottom five in QB rating over the last five years: Tebow (33.4), Sanchez (40.4) and Bradford (40.7).

Tebow, 27, last played in an NFL game in the 2012 season with the Jets, who acquired him from the Broncos. He participated in training camp with the Patriots in 2013 but was cut at the end of the preseason. He was an analyst for ESPN and the SEC Network last season.

Tweeted Tebow after his release from the Patriots: I will remain in relentless pursuit of continuing my lifelong dream of being an NFL quarterback.

— The names change, but the troubles continue for football players in Florida. On Saturday night, University of Florida defensive back J.C. Jackson was arrested for allegedly participating in an armed robbery in Gainesville.

Jackson, who redshirted as a freshman this past season, is accused of setting up the robbery by going to the victim’s apartment with two friends, then leaving while the friends committed the robbery at gunpoint.

Florida coach Jim McElwain issued a statement saying the situation was “being handled accordingly due to the severity of his actions.”

Jackson, 19, has had previous brushes with the law. He was grazed by a bullet on Christmas Eve in his hometown of Immokalee, Florida.

— Troubled Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton is getting divorced from his wife, as he filed papers in February, around the same time he acknowledged having a relapse of his substance-abuse problems.

According to the court papers (as reported by The Associated Press), Hamilton is not allowed to see his children without supervision, nor is he allowed to visit the family’s homes in Westlake, Texas; Valley Mills, Texas; and Newport Coast, California — the latter of which was placed on the market Friday.

Hamilton, who had right shoulder surgery before spring training, has not been with the team since he reported his relapse to MLB officials, who did not discipline him.

Hamilton is owed $83 million over the final three seasons of a five-year, $125 million he signed as a free agent in 2012, although his future with the Angels is in question.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On April 20, 1986, Michael Jordan scored an NBA playoff record 63 points at the Boston Garden, but the Celtics beat the Bulls in double overtime, 135-131. He broke the record of 61 set in 1962, also against the Celtics at the Garden, by which player?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “We’re still confident. Guys are ready for Game 2, knowing that good or bad you’ve got to have a short memory. There are possibly seven games in this series and it could go either way.” Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas, after Sunday’s 113-100 loss to the Cavaliers in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series

STAT OF THE DAY: 6.24 – The ERA of the Red Sox‘ starting rotation, worst in the majors, after Sunday’s 8-3 loss to the Orioles in which Rick Porcello allowed eight runs in five-plus innings

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): John Tavares scores 15 seconds into overtime to give the Islanders a win over the Capitals.

Nelson Cruz hits a walkoff single with two outs and two strikes in the ninth inning to lift the Mariners over the Rangers.

Jon Lester can’t get the ball out of his glove, so he tosses it to first baseman Anthony Rizzo for the out against the Padres.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Elgin Baylor, who scored 61 points to lead the Lakers past the Celtics, 126-121, in Game 5 of the 1962 NBA Finals

SOOTHING SOUNDS: The late Luther Vandross, the singer of “One Shining Moment,” was born on this day in 1951.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar

Reports: Tim Tebow, Eagles reach agreement on contract

Tim Tebow spent roughly three months with the Patriots in the summer of 2013. (Elsa/Getty Images)

Tim Tebow spent roughly three months with the Patriots in the summer of 2013. (Elsa/Getty Images)

He’€™s back.

According to multiple reports, Tim Tebow has reached an agreement on a deal with the Eagles and will sign a contract on Monday. The quarterback, who has suited up for the Broncos, Jets and Patriots, spent the 2014 season out of football working for ESPN.

The 27-year-old, a former Heisman Trophy winner with the University of Florida, joins an intriguing group of quarterbacks in Philly, as he’€™ll battle Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez and Matt Barkley for snaps.

Tebow was in Foxboro for the summer of 2013, and had issues with New England while working as one of the backups to Tom Brady. In three preseason games, he was 11-for-30 for 145 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions before being released. However, he earned the respect of many in the locker room, including a nod from the starting quarterback.

“I enjoyed being around him very much,” Brady said of Tebow when asked about him by WEEI shortly after Tebow was cut. “He’s a very talented football player, and to have a chance to spend a couple months with him and kind of become a friend of his was a great thing.’€

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price

Red Sox starting rotation struggling after first 2 weeks, posting worst ERA in baseball

After three starts, Rick Porcello has the sixth-worst ERA in the AL among qualifiers. (Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

After three starts, Rick Porcello has the sixth-worst ERA in the AL among qualifiers. (Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

Going into the season it was understood the Red Sox wouldn’t have the best starting rotation in the game.

But, the worst starting rotation (by ERA) after two weeks? That wasn’t expected, or accepted.

Following Rick Porcello allowing eight runs in five-plus innings in an 8-3 loss to the Orioles on Sunday, through 12 games the Red Sox‘ starting rotation has a combined ERA of 6.24, the worst in baseball.

Porcello, who had been the best starter to this point in the year, struggled with his command as well as the home run ball, allowing two homers en route to the eight runs in five-plus innings and his first loss. He’s now allowed five home runs in 19 innings so far this season.

“Just pitches up in the zone,” Porcello said. “Good pitches for them to drive. I’€™ve got to work better at getting the ball down.”

Of the 12 games the Red Sox have played so far this season, Red Sox starters have recorded an out in the seventh inning just three times, gone less than five innings three times, and have allowed more than seven runs four times.

The last stat is particularly alarming — in a third of their games this season, Red Sox starters have allowed seven or more runs.

Clay Buchholz allowed 10 against the Yankees, Porcello eight against the Orioles, and lastly Wade Miley and Justin Masterson seven against the Nationals. (For what it’s worth, Jon Lester and John Lackey combined for four starts allowing seven or more runs all of last season)

Buchholz and Porcello were predicted to lead the rotation, but after the first two weeks the Red Sox have two players in the top-10 for worst ERA’s in the American League among qualifiers — Porcello (sixth, 6.63) and Buchholz (ninth, 6.06).

While teams can survive without an ace, those teams cannot get by without having dependable starters. With starters not going deep into games, it puts a lot of pressure on the bullpen, and sooner or later taxing the group with innings will ultimately force the group to crack. Having an ace, or two, can alleviate some of that pressure by going at least seven or more innings every time they take to the mound.

“You realize it’€™ll be a reality where a starter will put together three, four, five good runs through the rotation at a time and we’€™ll be sitting back there comparing about the lack of work and then a couple of times through it will feel like we’€™re out there pitching probably too much,” reliever Craig Breslow said after throwing three scoreless innings of relief Sunday.

So far the bullpen hasn’t seen the affects of their starters not going deep into games, as after Sunday they have an ERA of 2.74. They were 14th in baseball in relief pitching ERA going into the day, but could crack the top-10 after four scoreless innings.

The alarming trend is they’ve now thrown 49 2/3 innings in 12 games. While the 19-inning game against the Yankees needs to be taken into account, the group has thrown the third-most innings in all of baseball for relievers going into play Sunday. There is no doubt if the trend continues it can only lead to bad things.

By way of comparison to Red Sox teams in past years, Red Sox starters had an ERA of 4.36, 26th in baseball last year, leading to a last place finish. In 2013, the World Series champs had a 3.84 ERA, 11th in baseball.

Getting the ball next for the Red Sox are the two pitchers who have seemingly had the most issues this year — Masterson (10 2/3 innings/9 runs) and Miley (7 2/3 innings/9 runs) each allowing seven runs their last time out.

As Breslow pointed out, things can go the other way where starters get in a groove and go deep into games. The Red Sox can only hope that is the case coming up.

The team lost two straight games for the first time this year Sunday, and without a solid outing from Masterson on Monday, they could be looking at their third.

“You’€™ve got to have a short memory and turn the page,” Porcello said.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Duke WR Jamison Crowder

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2015 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

JAMISON CROWDER

Position: Wide receiver

School: Duke

Height: 5-foot-9

Weight: 175 pounds

Achievements: 2014 All-ACC first team wide receiver and return specialist, 2014 Biletnikoff Award candidate for best receiver, 2014 Maxwell Award watch list for top player, 2013 All-America second team punt returner (FWAA, SI), 2013 All-ACC wide receiver and return specialist, 2012 All-ACC honorable mention

What he brings: As well as being a very successful slot receiver, Crowder carries a lot of value as a return man. Scouts like his ability to make defenders miss and use his quickness to create space. However, he is small for an NFL receiver and will have to overcome some physical hurdles to maintain his effectiveness in the pros. The hope among scouts and experts is that his speed and skills will help make up for what he lacks in size.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 3-5

Notes: As a senior captain in 2014, Crowder caught 85 passes for 1,044 yards and six touchdowns. He finished his career with an ACC record-tying 283 receptions for 3,641 yards and 23 touchdowns. He returned four punts for touchdowns, a school record. He is looking to become the first Duke receiver to be drafted since 1990.

Related articles:

USA Today: Crowder’s Draft Diary

DetroitLions.com: WR Jamison Crowder making a big impression at Senior Bowl

Video: Here are highlight’s from Crowder’s Duke career.

Blog Author: 
Nik Beimler

5 things we learned as Cavaliers take Game 1 from Celtics in convincing fashion

The Celtics kept LeBron James in relative check, and still lost Game 1 to the Cleveland Cavaliers by double digits — an ominous sign for the remainder of their first-round playoff series.

James finished with 20 points on 18 shots and added seven assists with five turnovers, so instead Kyrie Irving made the Celtics pay, scoring 30 points in a 113-100 victory that gave the Cavs a 1-0 series lead. Kevin Love added a double-double (19 points, 12 rebounds).

The Celtics actually owned the lead 20 minutes into the game, thanks to 55 points from their bench, but couldn’t overcome Cleveland’s 15 offensive rebounds and 13 3-pointers. Isaiah Thomas led six C’s in double figures with 22 points and 10 assists. Kelly Olynyk and Evan Turner added 12 points apiece, while Brandon Bass, Marcus Smart and Jae Crowder each added 10.

For the complete box score, click here.

SOLID START

After the first quarter, this series seemed like it might go longer than anyone anticipated. The Celtics scored 31 points on 57.1 percent shooting, taking a 31-27 lead into the second frame. Tyler Zeller did the damage with six points against his former team early, Turner drained a corner 3-pointer to tie the game at 11 midway through the first quarter, and the bench carried the load late to take a 31-27 lead.

KO PUNCH

Olynyk couldn’t have enjoyed a better start to his first playoff appearance. Demonstrating the breadth of his offensive skill set, Olynyk drove baseline to score his first basket a minute after checking into the game, and then knocked down a 3-pointer on his next trip down the floor to give the C’s a 16-13 lead. Two minutes later, he threw down a driving dunk past fellow Canadian Tristan Thompson, and his second 3 of the game gave him 10 points in the opening quarter.

STARPOWER Cleveland’s stars were bound to take over at some point, and Irving was the first to make the Celtics pay, scoring 12 of his 20 first-half points in a second quarter that saw the Cavaliers drop 35 points and turn an eight-point deficit into an eight-point lead by halftime. The All-Star point guard made eight of his 12 shots in the opening 24 minutes, including all four of his 3-point attempts — the last of which came at the buzzer and gave Cleveland their 62-54 halftime edge.

REBOUNDING

In what may very well have been Celtics coach Brad Stevens‘ first between-quarter sideline interview on national TV, he wasn’t satisfied with his team’s four-point lead after the first quarter, if only because of Cleveland’s 27 points at the time. The C’s were defending well, but giving the Cavaliers too many second-chance points, and the rebounding edge caught up with them in the second quarter and beyond. All in all, the Cavs grabbed 14 offensive boards and out-rebounded the Celtics 35-12 through three quarters, taking a 91-76 lead into the fourth.

CLOSING THE THIRD QUARTER

The Cavaliers opened a 20-point lead with 4:33 left in the third after four straight points from Kevin Love, but the Celtics answered with a 14-0 run to cut the deficit down to six on the strength of reserves Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Jonas Jerebko and Marcus Smart. And then it all went to hell. The Cavs closed the quarter on a 9-0 run, including a James Jones 3 for their second buzzer beater in as many quarters, and established an insurmountable lead going into the fourth.

Blog Author: 
Ben Rohrbach

Closing Time: Rick Porcello struggles, David Ortiz ejected as Red Sox fall to Orioles

Rick Porcello allowed eight runs and tied a career-high in hits allowed (12) taking his first loss of the season. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Rick Porcello allowed eight runs and tied a career-high in hits allowed (12) taking his first loss of the season. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Some nights the Red Sox offense will be able to bail a starting pitcher out for not having a good performance, but it’s tough when the starter allows eight runs over 5+ innings.

Red Sox starter Rick Porcello allowed eight runs in 5+ innings, as they fell to the Orioles 8-3 Sunday at Fenway Park. The Orioles have won two straight games in the series after the Red Sox had a walkoff win Friday night.

After throwing 96 pitches through the first five innings, Porcello went back out for the sixth and after hitting Caleb Joseph to lead off the inning, allowed three straight hits, including a bases clearing double to Adam Jones, as the Orioles extended their lead to five runs.

Porcello finished going five-plus innings, allowing eight runs on 12 hits, while walking three and striking out six. The 12 hits allowed tied a career-high and his is ERA through three starts is 6.63.

Through 12 starts, the Red Sox’ starting rotation has a collective ERA of 6.24.

Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez went five innings, allowing three runs on five hits to earn the win. Red Sox hitters finished with six total hits in the game, and just four after the first inning. They finished the game 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position.

SWENSON GRANITE WORKS ROCK SOLID PERFORMER OF THE GAME: Jones. Besides the big double in the sixth, Jones hit a monster home run in the first inning and finished 4-for-5 with five RBI. The five RBI and four hits both tie a career-high.

Here is what went wrong (and right) in the Red Sox’ loss:

WHAT WENT WRONG

— Porcello continues to struggle with allowing home runs this season. The right-hander came into the season allowing 0.94 home runs per nine innings, but has allowed five in 19 innings so far this year. He allowed a two-run Jones home run in the first and a solo homer to Ryan Flaherty in the second.

David Ortiz was ejected by home plate umpire John Tumpane (after he took over for Paul Emmel) for arguing balls and strikes in the fifth inning. Ortiz appeared to hold up on a check swing, but it was ruled he went around. This comes after Ortiz didn’t like a call third base umpire Jerry Meals made earlier in the game on a check swing.

— Mookie Betts continues to struggle at the plate of late, going 0-for-4 in the game. He is now 0 for his last 11, and is 4-for-21 (.190) on the homestand.

— Xander Bogaerts went 0-for-4 in the loss. He came into the game leading the team with 15 hits.

— Although the defense wasn’t charged with an error, Hanley Ramirez misplayed a ball off the wall again, allowing it to go over his head. Shane Victorino also took a poor route on a ball hit to right field and before finding it in the air, the ball landed on the warning track going for a double.

WHAT WENT RIGHT

— Ramirez belted his first home run at Fenway Park this year in the first inning, giving the Red Sox a 3-2 lead at the time. He ripped the first pitch he saw from Gonzalez over the Monster, hitting the Sports Authority sign. It was his fifth home run of the year, which is second in the American League. He went 2-for-4 in the loss.

— Taking over for Porcello, Craig Breslow gave the Red Sox a solid performance in relief. After coming in with a runner on second with no outs in the sixth, he got out of it without any damage. In all he went three innings not allowing a run on two hits. Edward Mujica threw a scoreless ninth.

— Brock Holt continues to make the most of his playing opportunities. Giving Dustin Pedroia a day off at second base, Holt singled to lead off the game and has now hit safely in six straight games.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Clemson OLB Vic Beasley

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2015 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

VIC BEASLEY

Position: Outside linebacker

School: Clemson

Height: 6-foot-3

Weight: 235 pounds

Achievements: 2014 All-America first team, 2014 All-ACC first team, 2014 ACC Defensive Player of the Year, 2014 finalist for Bednarik, Lombardi and Hendricks Awards for best defensive player, 2013 All-America first team, 2013 All-ACC first team

What he brings: Scouts love Beasley’s athleticism; he used to play running back and is able to use quickness and agility to get around blockers and into the backfield. He has impressed with his ability on the pass rush, but there are questions about his run defense. Some experts are concerned that he doesn’t have the size to match up with NFL linemen and may rely too heavy on his athleticism instead of strength.

Where the Patriots could get him: Round 1

Notes: Beasley finished 2014 with 28 tackles and 11 sacks. In four years with the Tigers he had 52.5 tackles for loss, a school-record 33 sacks, 29 quarterback pressures, 11 pass breakups, seven forced fumbles and two recovered fumbles. At the scouting combine he finished first among linebackers in the 40-yard dash (4.53 seconds) and bench press (35 reps), third in the vertical jump (41 inches) and broad jump (10 feet, 10 inches), and fourth in the three-cone drill (6.91 seconds) and 20-yard shuttle (4.15 seconds).

Related articles:

Greenville Online: Beasley’s character matches his skill

NFL.com: Beasley compares himself to Broncos’ Von Miller

Video: Beasley makes three tackles and two sacks against FSU in September 2014.

Blog Author: 
Nik Beimler

Brandon Workman 2 or 3 weeks away from throwing program after receiving PRP injection

Brandon Workman

Brandon Workman

Anytime a pitcher visits with Dr. James Andrews the news usually isn’t good.

For Brandon Workman, it could have been much worse as the right-hander avoided surgery and received a PRP (platelet-rich plasma) injection after visiting with him earlier this week.

Workman will remain in Boston and begin the rehab process.

“He’ll remain here. He’s still probably two or three weeks away from initiating any type of throwing program,” manager John Farrell said. “So he’ll remain here in Boston.”

“There are some changes to the ligament,” he added. “To what extent, or percentage of tear, I don’t have that. But that is why he received the injection he did.”

Farrell said the expectation is he will be able to pitch again this year.

Workman was set to begin the year in Pawtucket’s bullpen, but he had his optioned reversed as the injury first occurred while he was on the major league roster, so he is currently on the major league disabled list.

For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Red Sox lineup: Shane Victorino returns, Dustin Pedroia gets ‘planned’ day off

After being scratched from the lineup Saturday with bruised ribs, Shane Victorino returns to the Red Sox lineup Sunday against the Orioles.

The right fielder spoke in the clubhouse before the game and said he feels fine after running into the right field wall Friday night. He swung in the cage during Saturday’s game and is ready to go Sunday.

Dustin Pedroia will get his first day off of the season. The second baseman is 0 for his last 7 and has committed two errors over the first 11 games.

“Just a day off. One of the benefits of Brock Holt,” manager John Farrell said.

“No, not a reaction,” to Pedroia’s recent struggles he added. “Planned day knowing we have an early morning game tomorrow and a left-hander on the mound. A chance to give him a spell.”

Holt will lead off with Mookie Betts sliding down to the No. 2 spot. Farrell said that was just a way to break up the left-handers in the order.

Sandy Leon will catch Red Sox starter Rick Porcello, as the Red Sox go up against Orioles right-hander Miguel Gonzalez.

For an extensive look at the pitching matchups, click here.

1. Brock Holt, 2B
2. Mookie Betts, CF
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Hanley Ramirez, LF
5. Pablo Sandoval, 3B
6. Mike Napoli, 1B
7. Shane Victorino, RF
8. Xander Bogaerts, SS
9. Sandy Leon, C
Rick Porcello, RHP

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Washington DT Danny Shelton

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2015 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

DANNY SHELTON

Position: Defensive tackle

School: Washington

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 339 pounds

Achievements: 2014 All-America first team (AP), 2014 All-Pac-12 first team, 2014 Academic All-Pac-12 first team, 2013 Academic All-Pac-12 first team, 2012 Academic All-Pac-12 first team

What he brings: Shelton is burly and hard to fight off. Rob Rang of CBS Sports regards him as “surprisingly light on his feet” and notes that Shelton has “generates impressive momentum to collide with ballcarriers.” Shelton has a good feel for where ball-carriers are and is always game to try and knock down some passes. According to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com, Shelton is “an above-average interior pass rusher for a man his size, thanks to his surprising athleticism” and must show improved consistency of effort if he wants to reach his potential.

Where the Patriots could get him: Round 1

Notes: Shelton has drawn comparisons to former Pats nose tackle Vince Wilfork. In 2014 he led the nation in fumble recoveries with five and had 16 tackles for loss. He also had 9.5 sacks this past season. He did not miss a single game in college due to an injury. At the combine Shelton had 34 reps on the bench press, which earned him top-performer status, and ran a 5.64-second 40-yard dash. He also recorded a 4.65-second 20-yard shuttle and a 30.5-inch vertical jump. In 2011, when Shelton was 17, two of his brothers were shot in front of him. Shennon Shelton was shot in the head and died in the hospital later, while Gaston, who had been shot in the chest, survived. Danny didn’t have the easiest childhood, as he, his sister, three brothers and mother moved around to avoid Shelton’s abusive father.

Related articles:

Redskins.com: Danny Shelton brings energy from defensive line

Akron Beacon Journal: 2015 NFL Draft: Washington nose tackle Danny Shelton overcomes tragedy to become projected first-round pick who’s drawn interest from Browns

The Seattle Times: Huskies’ Danny Shelton saw a nightmare but is living his dream

Video: Here is a video of some of Shelton’s highlights.

Blog Author: 
Judy Cohen