Bruins Nation suffered a scare last night, as Tuukka Rask needed help getting off the ice following the team's 4-3 win over the Vegas Golden Knights.
Fortunately for the Bruins and their fans, the situation was extremely minor.
"Just cramping...I'm good," Rask said following the game, noting the Vegas heat likely playing a factor.
Rask made 31 saves on 34 shots in the win. In two games this season, the 32-year-old is 2-0 with a 2.00 GAA and .937 save %.
The Red Sox will have a new pitching coach in 2020, as Dana LeVangie has been relieved of the job's duties, several outlets reported on Tuesday.
LeVangie, who spent the last two seasons as the team's pitching coach, will return for his 30th season with the organization as a pro scout. LeVangie was a pro scout for the Red Sox in 2005 before becoming an advance scout from 2006-12.
In addition to LeVangie's reassignment, Brian Bannister and Steve Langone will have new positions in the organization as well:
The parting ways with Andy Barkett was the first move the Red Sox announced following their disappointing 84-78 season; Barkett was the team's assistant hitting coach for the last two years.
For fans, the reassignment of LeVangie doesn't come as much of a surprise. After overlooking a pitching staff that posted a 3.75 ERA in 2018—which ranked eighth in the majors—that number went up this past season to 4.70, 19th in the majors. In addition, Boston's 4.95 ERA from starting pitchers in 2019 ranked 20th, a season after finishing eighth with a 3.77 clip.
While the struggles of Boston's pitching staff can't fall entirely on LeVangie due to injury-plagued and flat-out underachieving seasons from key members of the team, somebody has to pay the price.
For the first time since the 2001-02 season, the Bruins are off to a 3-0 start, after their 4-3 win over the Las Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday night.
Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak led the Bruins with three points apiece, combining for three of the team's four goals, while Tuukka Rask made 31 saves on 34 shots for his second win of the season.
As of Wednesday, the Bruins are one of just four teams in the NHL to have a perfect record after at least three games (Carolina 4-0, Anaheim and Edmonton both 3-0).
Boston began the season with a 2-1 win over the Dallas Stars on Thursday night, before Jaroslav Halak shut out the Arizona Coyotes 1-0 on Saturday night.
The Bruins take on the Colorado Avalanche tomorrow night (Thursday), before returning home to TD Garden on Saturday night to take on the New Jersey Devils for their home opener.
After three games, Marchand leads the Bruins with three goals and four points. Pastrnak, Danton Heinen, Torey Krug, and Brett Ritchie have one goal each, while Pastrnak and Patrice Bergeron both have two assists. In all, 11 skaters have registered at least one point.
Prior to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, Patrice Bergeron reportedly had a message for his Bruins teammates.
Whatever it was, it worked, as they came out on top to force a Game 7.
How fitting it is that it was Bergeron. He's the longest tenured player of the team, one of the leaders, one of the best two-way forwards in the game, all of it. No one better to get his troops ready for battle in a must-win, elimination game.
You know there'll be another message prior to Game 7 from Bergy.
8 pm, tomorrow night, Boston.
Some New Developments On The David Ortiz Situation, Including That He's Resting Comfortably In Boston
Yesterday when I wrote this article about the shocking shooting of David Ortiz in the Dominican Republic, I mentioned Eddy Vladimir Feliz Garcia. That's who we all thought was the gunman at the time. I called him a piece of shit. Which I'm not taking back, either.
But as several outlets have reported, turns out that Garcia wasn't the shooter. He was just the driver of the motorcycle that left the scene at the bar Ortiz was at. So still, he's an accessory to attempted murder. There was a video of Garcia getting beaten to a pulp, so naturally, we all thought it was him who shot Ortiz.
According to a source close to ESPN Deportes, both Garcia and the suspected gunman are in police custody. Officials have not yet released the identify of the shooter.
Ortiz, who was shot at about 8:50 pm on Sunday night in Santo Domingo, was treated for his injuries in the DR in the immediate aftermath. According to CBS Boston, doctors removed Ortiz's gallbladder and part of his intestine while in intensive care.
The 14-year Red Sox slugger was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston on Monday night, where he's in stable condition following a second surgery; it's unclear how long Ortiz will need to stay there for.
Ortiz's wife, Tiffany Ortiz, issued the following statement:
Stay tuned for further updates on Ortiz and the ongoing situation.
GRAPHIC: Sox/MLB Legend David Ortiz Shot In Dominican Republic, Expected To Be Okay; Suspect In Custody
As all of New England was engaged in the Bruins' 5-1 win last night, reports on Twitter started to quickly come in that Red Sox legend David Ortiz was shot in his native Dominican Republic, specifically Santo Domingo, the country's capital.
CDN News out of the Dominican first reported that Ortiz had been injured in an incident and sent to a hospital, before later confirming he was shot.
Surveillance footage shows a gunman approach behind Ortiz shooting him in the back, as Ortiz was on the outdoor patio of a bar. Beware, it is indeed graphic:
It didn't take long for the piece of shit to get tracked down:
The suspect has been identified as 25-year-old Eddy Vladimir Feliz Garcia. During his beating, he suffered a cranium contusion and trauma to this thorax, knee, and leg. Well deserved, in my opinion. He was treated for his injuries before being handed over to the police.
Now of course, everyone's first reaction is shock. It's David Ortiz, the king of Boston. He helped break the curse and win three titles for the Red Sox. Who would think to do such a thing to him in his own country, where he's adored by absolutely everyone, as well as in Boston and many other parts of America? He's a legend in two countries, no doubt about it. Who goes after a guy like that? Especially one known for his charitable contributions, especially in the DR?
All of Red Sox nation was in disbelief, as tweets started to pour out. There's a billion, so I won't share any. But they were all thinking the same thing—is Ortiz OK? Will he survive?
Thankfully, he did, and is expected to be OK. Thank God. This is David Ortiz we're talking. He's arguably the most iconic as well as adored Boston athlete in this recent run of dominance. Bigger than Tom Brady, some will tell you. That's the type of influence he's had on the city of Boston in this era of sports. To have him be taken away at just 43, with so much life in front of him, would be absolutely devastating.
But Big Papi isn't going anywhere.
Prayers and best wishes to Ortiz for a speedy recovery.
Boston strong indeed, baby.
With their backs against the wall last night, the Bruins prevailed in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, beating the Blues 5-1 to force Game 7 in Boston on Wednesday night.
Five different Bruins scored on Sunday night. Brad Marchand's (9th) power-play goal in the first period got things going, while the remaining four came in the third, courtesy of Brandon Carlo (2nd), Karson Kuhlman (1st), David Pastrnak (9th), and Zdeno Chara (EN, 2nd), in that order. For Kuhlman, it was his first game since April 30, having just been inserted into the lineup over David Backes, who was a healthy scratch for the second straight game.
Kuhlman's goal gave the Bruins a 3-0 lead in the third with less than 10 minutes to go. It was also one of the prettiest goals scored by the Bruins in these playoffs:
With the goal, Kuhlman became the 21st Bruin to score a goal this postseason, tying the 1987 Philadelphia Flyers for the all-time record by one team. Of everyone who's appeared this postseason for Boston, John Moore is the only skater to have not scored.
Tuukka Rask was sharp in net once again, saving all but one of the 29 shots he faced, improving his save percentage to .938 this postseason.
So this is it. Game 7 in Boston. Wednesday night. It's the first Game 7 at home for the Bruins in their nearly 100-year history, and first one for Boston in a championship game since 1984 when the Celtics beat the Lakers.
Can't wait. Let's fucking go.
Red Sox starter Nathan Eovaldi's return to the mound will have to wait a bit longer, as biceps soreness has pushed back his next scheduled bullpen session.
The Boston Globe's Pete Abraham broke the news today:
Eovaldi hasn't pitched since April 17. On April 22, he underwent surgery to remove loose bodies from his right elbow. Following the surgery, multiple outlets reported that Eovaldi would return in no less than six weeks.
The hard-throwing righty was progressing nicely in his rehab, with the Red Sox hoping for a mid-June return prior to his setback.
In four starts this year, Eovaldi is 0-0 with a 6.00 ERA.
It's do-or-die for the Bruins, down 3-2 to the Blues in the Stanley Cup Final with Game 6 tonight in St. Louis.
There will be a change for the Bruins, as forward Karson Kuhlman will be inserted into tonight's lineup. Kuhlman will replace David Backes' usual spot on the second line, as Backes will sit out his second straight game.
Kuhlman has skated in six games this postseason with the last one being on April 30 against the Columbus Blue Jackets, Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinal. In those six games, he has two assists and nine shots.
The Red Sox improved to 1-2 in their weekend series against the Rays, splitting a doubleheader on Saturday. Boston lost 9-2 in the first game, followed by a 5-1 win, in which David Price struck out 10 in six solid innings to improve to 4-2.
Price is now unbeaten in his last six starts dating back to April 27. His 10 strikeouts in the game tied a season-high, which came on April 21—also against the Rays.
Michael Chavis and Marco Hernandez (who played both ends of the doubleheader for his first MLB games in over two years) each recorded two-run doubles to back Price, coming in the third and fifth innings, respectively.
Brandon Workman, Marcus Walden, and Matt Barnes each fired a scoreless inning to close out the win.
Josh Smith started the first game for Boston, taking the loss as he allowed four earned runs (all in the second inning) in four innings. For Smith, it was his fifth game and second start this season, as he's now 0-2.
Mike Shawaryn fired two scoreless innings for his second game in as many days, the first of which was his MLB debut; Shawaryn struck out three and now has seven through two appearances with an .077 batting average-against (1-for-13).
Boston's record after the doubleheader was 34-31, while Tampa Bay's was 39-24. The Rays' record is now the same as the Yankees for a first-place tie in the AL East, with the Red Sox sitting six games back and seven in the loss column.
The Red Sox will look to split the weekend series with a win this afternoon, as Eduardo Rodriguez (6-3, 4.88 ERA) takes the mound for his 13th start of the year against defending Cy Young winner Blake Snell (3-5, 3.68 ERA).