BOSTON (CBS) – A few thoughts on a beautiful summer morning in New England…..

–The Red Sox starting rotation is in disarray. Common sense has Jon Lester returning in about 3 weeks as the Sox will be extremely cautious with his lat injury. Look for Clay Buchholz and his mystery injury to take a bit longer. You get the feeling that the Sox just need to get to the All-Star break where they can re-group and gear up for the second half. The offense will be critical for the next month and will have to carry the team.

–I know Adrian Gonzalez has the sweet swing and David Ortiz has had a tremendous first half, but I would tell the kids to watch and appreciate the drive and passion that Kevin Youkilis and Dustin Pedroia bring to the park every day. Every day.

–If you venture down to the Cape this summer, it’s a must that you take in a Cape League game. Went down for the 4th of July weekend with the family and saw two games at Cotuit and one night game at Chatham. Hard to explain, but there’s just something about the games that makes you appreciate baseball. Very relaxing and you’re watching kids that will be playing in the big leagues in the future. My son was a big fan of Cotuit’s Victor Roache out of Georgia Southern. Looks like he could be a stud on the MLB level.

–Went to Ray Allen’s Vitamin Water charity event Wednesday night in Boston. Was interesting to hear Ray use the word embarrassing when it comes to the money that the players and owners are arguing about as they try to hammer out a new CBA. Wes Welker said pretty much the same thing when talking at his football camp last month.

Ray Allen On NBA Lockout “It’s Embarrassing”

–By the way… even if the NBA lockout lasted for a year it sounds like Ray Allen has no intention of retiring. Every other word Allen used when speaking to kids at his event was seemingly “workout”. It’s his life.

–Don’t know about you, but I still have Stanley Cup playoff hockey withdrawals. Miss the games. The intensity. And, if you feel the same way… don’t forget the Bruins developmental camp this weekend in Wilmington.

–And finally, he said it a few months back andI believe him. Patriots owner Robert Kraft said if you take the lawyers out of the room, the owners and players could hammer out a new CBA deal in a couple of weeks. I have to believe that is exactly what’s happened and when the deal gets done I have no doubt in my mind that Robert Kraft will have played a huge role in getting this done. The guy is as good a negotiator and businessman as you’ll ever come across.

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