New England Patriots’ 2018 NFL schedule: No shortage of tests for Tom Brady and Co.
Marquee game: As is customary, the Patriots’ schedule lends itself to being one of the NFL’s most high-profile dockets. Dates with the Texans, Jaguars and Steelers all seem highly compelling, and matchups against Matt Patricia’s Lions, Malcolm Butler’s Titans and Danny Amendola’s Dolphins will each provide reunion subplots. But Week 9’s rare showdown with Aaron Rodgers and the Packers on Sunday Night Football has to take the cake as a potential Super Bowl LIII preview.
The Tigers just launched a lengthy rebuild, and Miguel Cabrera won’t be a star when the team has a chance to win again. The Wings finally committed to a complete overhaul, touting youngsters and precious draft picks. The Pistons are stuck in limbo, trying to squeeze a couple big seasons out of Blake Griffin.
HOW? Kahnle, whose fastball averaged 98.11 mph last year, has seen it average just 95.49 mph this season. His average velocity dropped every outing from his March 30 season debut until it bounced back a bit in Boston last week.
THE DIAGNOSIS: Bullpen coach Mike Harkey told Kahnle he didn’t believe his warmups looked the same lately. After pressing Kahnle on his health, the pitcher told the team he felt something funny in his shoulder. He doesn’t feel anything that’s too wrong in there but I said he’s had a little bit of trouble getting warmed up, Boone said.
WHAT BOONE THINKS: We’re hoping this is something we can knock out with a few days of rest. But that will unfold over the next 24 hours and the days ahead. At least optimistic that it’s a minor situation, the manager said.
WHO TAKES HIS PLACE? Luis Cessa, a right-hander who was set to start at Triple-A on Tuesday, was recalled. He hasn’t given up a run in either of his one-inning appearances in the majors this season.
Pulled after allowing three goals on five shots in the first period of Game 2, Andersen then robbed Pastrnak with a stellar diving stick save with Rask on the bench for an extra attacker with just over two minutes to go.