Dan the Man actually requested this blog. I’ve never had a blog requested before; so I figured I better write it.

We’re going to go back 5 years and look at the 1st round of the 2009 National Football League (NFL) draft. Any time the general manager or coach of your favorite team talks about the draft that team had they say something close to; it takes 5 years to really see how good or bad this draft was.

With the 1st pick of the draft the Detroit Lions picked Matthew Stafford quarterback (QB) from the University of Georgia. Stafford has had some injuries during his career, but he’s pretty much been the franchise QB the Lions where looking for. Stafford has played every game the last 3 seasons and had a career high 5038 yards and 41 touchdowns in 2011.

With the 2nd pick the St. Louis Rams selected offensive tackle Jason Smith from Baylor University. Smith never really worked out with the Rams. He played in 29 games for them starting 26 in the 3 seasons he was there. In August of 2012, the Rams traded Smith to the New York Jets for offensive tackle Wayne Hunter. Smith played in all 16 games for the Jets in 2012, but didn’t start any games for them. Smith didn’t play in 2013.

The Kansas City Chiefs had the 3rd pick and selected defensive end Tyson Jackson from LSU. Jackson has played in 74 games for the Chiefs starting 55 of those games. Jackson has 9 career sacks with a high of 4 last season. Jackson also has 137 tackles and 62 assists through his 5 years with Kansas City.

The Seattle Seahawks had the 4th pick and took linebacker Aaron Curry from Wake Forest. Curry spent 3 seasons with the Seahawks playing in 35 games starting 30 of them. Curry totaled 5 1/2 sacks for the Seahawks before they traded him to the Oakland Raiders for 2012 7th round pick and a 2013 5th round pick. Curry played in 13 games for the Raiders starting 9, but is currently out of the NFL.

The New York Jets traded up to the 5th pick; so they could take QB Mark Sanchez from USC. Things started well for Sanchez with the Jets as he quarterbacked them to back to back playoff appearances in 2009 and 2010 in his first 2 seasons there. Sanchez started 62 games for the Jets before missing all of the 2013 season with an injury. Sanchez was sacked 126 times in 4 seasons as the Jets starter. Sanchez is currently a back up QB for the Philadelphia Eagles.

The Cincinnati Bengals had the 6th pick and they took Andre Smith offensive tackle from Alabama. Smith has played in 59 games since being drafted starting 50 of them. In the last 2 seasons Smith has started 31 of a possible 32 games for the Bengals.

With the 7th pick the Oakland raiders took Darrius Heyward-Bay a wide receiver from Maryland. Heyward-Bay spent 4 seasons with the Raiders playing in 56 games while starting 53 games. He had 140 catches for 2071 yards and 11 touchdowns. Last season Heyward-Bay was with the Indianapolis Colts. He started 11 games for the Colts, but played in all 16 games. Heyward-Bay caught 29 passes for 309 yards and 1 touchdown.

The Jacksonville Jaquars had the 8th pick and selected Eugene Monroe offensive tackle from Virginia. Monroe was with the Jaquars for 4 seasons playing in 65 games; starting 62 of those games. Jacksonville traded Monroe to the Baltimore Ravens for a 4th and 5th round picks in the 2014 draft. Last season in Baltimore, Monroe played in and started 11 games for the Ravens.

The Green Bay Packers where picking 9th and took B.J. Raji defensive tackle out of Boston College. In 5 seasons with the Packers Raji has played in 76 games and has started 63 of those games. He has 10 1/2 career sacks with a season high of 6 1/2 sacks in 2010. Raji has made 91 career tackles and has assisted on 42 other. In 2011 Raji rushed 1 time for 1 yard scoring a touchdown.

The San Francisco 49ers had the 10th pick and took Michael Crabtree wide receiver from Texas Tech. Crabtree has been injury plagued during his career playing only one full season for the 49ers in 2012. Crabtree has 279 career receptions for 3629 yards and 22 touchdowns. His best year was 2012 with 85 catches for 1105 yards and 9 touchdowns.

The Buffalo Bills had the 11th pick and selected Aaron Maybin defensive end from Penn State. Maybin spent just 2 seasons with the Bills. He played in 27 games, but only started 1. He made 14 tackles and assisted on 9 others in his two seasons with Buffalo, but never got a sack. Maybin spent the next two seasons with the New York Jets. Maybin played 21 games for the Jets, but didn’t start any. He did however record his only career sacks with the Jets in 2011 when he got 4 of them.

The Denver Broncos had the 12th pick and they selected Knowshon Moreno running back out of the University of Georgia. Moreno has battled injuries while with Denver, but played in every game last season putting up 1038 yards; his 1st 100 yard season and 10 touchdowns, both career highs. Moreno has rushed for 3468 yards and scored 26 rushing touchdowns. He also caught 157 passes with Denver for 1401 yards and 9 more touchdowns. Moreno left Denver for the Miami Dolphins as a free agent this off-season.

With the 13th pick the Washington redskins pick Brian Orakpo a defensive end from the University of Texas. Orakpo has played in and started 64 games for the Redskins. Injury forced him to miss 14 games in 2012. Orakpo has 39 1/2 career sacks with his career high coming in his rookie season when he got 11 sacks. He has 157 career tackles and 75 career assists and last season he had his 1st career interception which he returned 29 yards for a touchdown.

At 14 the New Orleans Saints took cornerback Malcolm Jenkins from Ohio State. Jenkins has played in 71 games for the Saints starting 63 of those games. Jenkins has 6 career interceptions and has returned 2 of those for touchdowns. He also has 4 1/2 career sacks with a high of 2 1/2 coming last season. Jenkins has also returned a fumble for a touchdown.

The Houston Texans had the 15th pick and selected Brian Cushing linebacker from USC. Cushing has had an injury plagued career, but when healthy he’s a good player. He’s played 56 games starting all of them for the Texans in five seasons. He has 11 career sacks getting season highs of 4 in his rookie season 2009 and then again in 2011. He also has 8 career interceptions and has return 1 of them for a touchdown. Cushing has 278 career tackle and 133 assists with 1 of those tackles going for a safety.

The San Diego Chargers had the 16th pick and took Larry English a defensive end from Northern Illinois. English didn’t become the pass rusher the Chargers had hoped he would. He did record 11 sacks while with the Chargers. His season high was 3 sacks in 2010. English played in 52 games, but started just 9 of them. English signed with the Tampa bat Buccaneers in the off-season.

Speaking of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They had the next pick, #17 and they took QB Josh Freeman from Kansas State. Freeman played 4 plus season with the Buccaneers before they cut him last season. Freeman played 60 games starting 59 of them for Tampa Bay. He had a record of 24-35 as the starter. He threw for 13,534 yards and 80 touchdowns for Tampa Bay. The Minnesota Vikings picked him up last season and he started 1 game for them. The New York Giants signed him in the off-season, but he was released before the pre-season started. Currently Freeman isn’t on a NFL roster.

The Denver Broncos have there second 1st round pick at #18 and they selected Robert Ayers defensive end from the University of Tennessee. Ayers has played in 72 games for the Broncos, but has started just 27 of them. Ayers is used mostly on passing downs and has 12 career sacks with a high of 5 1/2 coming last season. Ayers does have 1 fumble return for a touchdown that came during his rookie season.

With the 19th pick the Philadelphia Eagles selected Jeremy Macklin wide receiver from Missouri. Macklin has missed some time due to injuries including all of last season. He has played in 59 games for Philadelphia starting 57 of those games. He has 258 career receptions for 3453 yards and 26 touchdowns in his career. Macklin has also handle some of the punt and kick return duties for the Eagles.

At #20 the Detroit Lions took Oklahoma State tight end Brandon Pettigrew. Pettigrew has missed a couple of games with injuries the last two seasons, but has played 71 games starting 68 of them for the Lions. He has 284 career receptions for 2828 yards and 16 touchdowns. Pettigrew never really solved the Lions issues at tight end as they spent this years 1st round draft pick on Eric Ebron.

With the 21st pick in the draft the Cleveland Browns took center Alex Mack from the University of California. Mack has started all 80 games for the Browns since he was drafted. On April 9, 2014, it was announced that the Jacksonville Jaguars had offered Mack a five-year contract, worth reportedly $42 million. The Browns had a maximum of five days to match Jacksonville’s offer, which they did on April 11. Mack had been previously assigned the transition tag, nullifying his free agency unless a team signed Mack to an offer sheet.

With the 22nd pick the Minnesota Vikings selected wide receiver Percy Harvin from the University of Florida. Harvin spent four seasons with the Vikings missing quite a few games do to migraine headaches. Harvin played in 54 games starting 43 games for the Vikings. He caught 280 passes for 3302 yards and 20 touchdowns in Minnesota. Harvin made his mark as a kickoff returner. He had 5 kickoff returns for touchdowns and averaged 27.9 yards per return for Minnesota. Harvin was traded to the Seattle Seahawks before the 2013 season for a 2013 1st round, a 2013 7th and a 2014 3rd round draft pick. Do to injuries Harvin played in just 1 regular season game for Seattle last season.

The Baltimore Ravens had the 23rd pick and they took offensive tackle Michael Oher out of Ole Miss. A lot of people know Oher from the movie the Blind Side. They might not know that Oher has played in and started all 80 games for the Ravens since they drafted him. Oher is versatile and has played both tackle spots along the Ravens offensive line.

At #24 the Atlanta falcons took defensive tackle Peria Jerry from Ole Miss. Jerry has played up and down the Falcons defensive line. He’s played 64 games, but has only started 29 of them. Jerry has 5 1/2 career sacks with his season high coming last season when he recorded 3 1/2 sacks. Jerry also had a career high in tackles last season with 25.

The 25th pick belonged to the Miami Dolphins and they selected cornerback Vontae Davis out of the University of Illinois. Davis played 3 seasons for the Dolphins before being traded to the Indianapolis Colts for a 2013 2nd round draft pick. Davis played 44 games with the Dolphins starting 36 of those games. He had 1 sack and 9 interceptions while playing for Miami and returned 1 of those interceptions for a touchdown. In 2 seasons with the Colts Davis has played in 26 games; all starts. He has 1 sack and 4 interceptions playing with Indianapolis.

With the 26th pick the Green Bay packers took USC linebacker Clay Matthews. Matthews has had some injuries, but has been a 4 time Pro Bowl player for the Packers. He has 50 career sacks with a season high of 13 1/2 sacks in 2010. Matthews has played in 69 games starting 66 of those games. Matthews is a pass rush specialist at linebacker, but does have 4 Career interceptions. He’s returned 2 of those interceptions for touchdowns and also has a fumble return for a touchdown.

At #27 the Indianapolis Colts selected running back Donald Brown from the University of Connecticut. Brown played in 66 games for the Colts starting 20 of them. Brown scored 17 touchdowns and rushed for 2377 yards. He also caught 83 passes for 767 yards and 2 touchdowns. Brown signed with the San Diego chargers as a free agent this off-season.

The Buffalo Bills had the 28th pick and selected Eric Wood a center from Louisville. Wood has played in 63 games for the Bills starting all of them including every game last season. Wood has spent some time at right guard as well as center for Buffalo.

The New York Giants where next at #29 and selected wide receiver Hakeem Nicks out of UNC. Nicks struggled with some injuries while playing for the Giants. He played in 70 games and started 59 of them for New York. He caught 311 passes for 4622 yards and 27 touchdowns. Nicks had back to back 100 yard seasons in 2010 and 2011. Nicks signed with the Indianapolis Colts as a free agent in the off-season.

With the 30th pick the Tennessee Titans selected Kenny Britt a wide receiver from Rutgers. Britt was a problem child for the Titans. He played in 57 games, but started only 30 of those games. He caught 157 passes for 2450 yards and 19 touchdowns. Britt was Tennessee’s many kick returner in 2009. He returned 24 kickoffs for an average return of 21.8 yards. Britt is now with the St. Louis Rams being reunited with Jeff Fischer.

At #31 the Arizona cardinals selected Ohio State running back Chris “Beanie” Wells. Wells battled injuries through out his career. He played in 51 games for Arizona starting 23 of those games. He rushed for 2471 yards in his career and broke the 1000 yard mark in 2011 with 1047 yards. Wells had 24 career rushing touchdowns. He also caught 28 passes for 293 yards in his career. On October 9th 2013, Wells tore his ACL during a work out with the Baltimore Ravens.

With the last pick of the 1st round #32 the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Missouri defensive tackle Evander “Ziggy” Hood. Hood has played all three spots along the Steelers defensive line. He’s appeared in 80 games starting 46 of them for Pittsburgh. Hood has 11 1/2 career sacks with a season high of 3 in 2010, 2012 and 2013. Hood set a career high in tackles last season with 26.

That was the 2009 1st round. How did your teams pick turn out? Did they even have a pick?

Just a couple of other picks for you. In the 5th round pick the Saints got Pro Bowl punter Thomas Morstead. In the 7th round the Jaquars drafted running back Rashad Jennings; who may be the Giants #1 back this season. The Chiefs had the last pick in the draft and selected kicker Ryan Succop with pick #256. Succop is still the Chiefs kicker.

How about some guys that weren’t even drafted that might be familiar to you. How about running back Arian Foster of the Houston Texans. Browns starting quarterback Brian Hoyer. 49ers hold out offensive lineman Alex Boone and Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett all went undrafted in 2009.

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

Pittsburgh Steelers running backs Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount Where arrested along with a female 3rd passenger and will be charged with marijuana possession following a traffic stop Wednesday afternoon. Bell was also charged with driving under the influence (DUI) of marijuana A traffic officer pulled over Bell’s Camaro when he noticed a strong odor coming from the vehicle. The officer found a 20 gram bag of marijuana inside the car. Bell, Blount and a female passenger all claimed ownership of the marijuana according to police. Blount and the female passenger were arrested and released while Bell was taken to a local hospital to have blood drawn before being released. The Steelers had a game Thursday night against the Philadelphia Eagles and while both Blount and Bell played Bell missed the team flight due to the arrest and had to buy a ticket on a commuter flight to make the game in Philadelphia. There was a little media uproar over the fact that Steelers coach Mike Tomlin allow Bell and Blount to play in the game. Blount carried the ball 7 times for 32 yards while Bell ran the football 9 times for 23 yards. Last season Bell set a franchise record for total yards by a rookie running back last season, smashing the mark set by Hall of Famer Franco Harris. The second-round pick out of Michigan State ran for 860 yards and eight touchdowns and caught 45 passes for 399 yards despite missing the first three games of the season with a foot injury. Blount was in the mix in the New England Patriots backfield last season and signed with the Steelers as a free agent this off-season. Blount rushed for four touchdowns setting the Patriots record for most rushing touchdowns in a playoff game last season against the Indianapolis Colts. Blount finished the day with 166 rushing yards on 24 carries. Since these arrests just took place this week the National Football League (NFL) hasn’t made any type of ruling or suspension for Bell and Blount. Bell should be a fairly high draft pick in most fantasy drafts this season and if your league is big enough you’d like to have Blount as a handcuff for Bell. A looming suspension for either player may make fantasy owners look another direction for running backs.

On Thursday, the Chicago White Sox traded 2nd baseman Gordon Beckham to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Beckham was the White Sox 1st round draft pick in 2008 and was #8 overall. Beckham spent a little over a year in the minors for the White Sox making his major league debut on June 4, 2009. I bring up Beckham because he’s one in a long, long line of 1st round major league baseball draft pick that never reached the heights in his career that scouts and other experts thought he would. While a very good defender Beckham never really hit in the majors; his career average is .244. While I don’t think you could say Beckham is a bust there have been some throughout baseball. Do you remember Danny Goodwin? He was selected #1 overall twice. Once by the White Sox in 1971 and then again in 1975 by the California Angels. Goodwin’s career lasted 6 seasons. He played in 252 games with a career batting average of .236 with 13 home runs. How about Brien Taylor? He was the #1 overall pick of the New York Yankees in 1991 and never made it to the majors. In 1993 Taylor suffered a dislocated left shoulder and torn labrum while defending his brother in a fist fight. Following surgery, he was never the same pitcher and ended up spending most of the rest of his professional career struggling in Class A. He was done for good-by 2000. What about Matt Bush the 2004 #1 overall draft pick by the San Diego Padres. Bush received a $3.15 million signing bonus, but he was arrested a few weeks later. After a few more arrests and a few more teams Bush is out of baseball having never played in the major leagues. How about the #1 overall pick in 1966 Steve Chilcott. The Mets took Chilcott over Reggie Jackson; who went 2nd to the Oakland A’s. Chilcott played 7 seasons in the minor leagues, but was plagued by injuries and never made it to the major leagues. In 1979 the Seattle Mariners selected outfielder Al Chambers with the 1st pick in the draft. Chambers played 57 games in parts of 3 seasons for the Mariners. Let’s find one more. Remember Bryan Bullington? in 2002 he was taken #1 overall by the Pittsburgh Pirates out of Ball State University. Bullington spent parts of 4 seasons in the majors. 2007 with the Pirates, 2008 with the Cleveland Indians, 2009 with the Toronto Blue Jays and 2010 with the Kansas City Royals. Bullington pitched in 26 major league games and was 1 – 9 with an ERA of 5.62 over 81 2/3 innings. Now I could go on and on with draft picks that didn’t work out, but there’s 5 for you to look at.

So how was your week?

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

What I’ve noticed when I turn on a highlight show no matter what network it is they have three stories that are always on the show. They mention Tony Stewart and the incident he had about three weeks ago. There’s a story in the show on little league player Mo’ne Davis. They also have an update on Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel. So here’s pretty much my take on these three stories.

On August 8th at Canandaigua Motorsports Park Tony Stewart was racing in the Empire Super Sprints series in upstate New York. As you all know during the race Stewart’s car collided with a car being driven by Kevin Ward Jr. Ward’s car was forced into the wall and he was out of the race. Ward Jr. proceeded to get out of his wrecked race car and started walking in the on coming cars looking for Stewart. I’m sure you’ve seen and or heard what happens from here. Stewart’s car hits Ward Jr. killing him. Stewart hasn’t raced in a NASCAR or any event since the incident. At first Stewart was going to race two weeks ago on the road course at Watkins Glen, but put out a statement on what happen with Ward Jr. and decided not to race. Stewart also missed Sunday’s NASCAR race in Michigan and there’s no time-table as to when he may return to the track. A lot of reports are really going after Stewart for not coming out and doing an interview or making a full statement. Let’s tell the truth here; they don’t care about Stewart or anything like that they’re just looking for a story. They seem to forget that this is an actual ongoing legal investigation and Stewart make have been advised by a lawyer to not comment until the investigation is over. While this is a horrible situation it’s in Stewart’s best interest to wait to talk about the incident. I think what’s worse than anything is that reporter have hounded the Ward family to get them to comment on the accident. I’ve seen comments from Ward Jr’s father and sister and it’s sad that they weren’t even given time to grieve before they were accosted by reporters looking for a quote. The investigation is close to being wrapped up and will see what they find and if Stewart will make a statement. I know the other thing that reporters are going after Stewart for is racing at Canandaigua Motorsports Park that night or at any non NASCAR event. NASCAR is a sport where guys don’t forget where they started off at and a lot of drivers go back to these tracks where they cut their teeth at. It’s also a big deal for whoever owns that certain track a NASCAR guy is going to race at. How many extra fans went out that night just to see Stewart. Of course hindsight is 20/20.

I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t watched much of the Little League World Series. There is a local team in the tournament still; so I’ve been checking in on them from time to time, but that’s really about it for me. Of course by the coverage it’s gotten you wouldn’t realize that there is more than one team even playing in this tournament. It seems that all of the attention has been focused on a 13-year-old pitcher from Philadelphia Mo’ne Davis. For whatever reason the first thing that popped into my mind was if she’s 13 years old why is she even in this tournament. The division she is playing in is for ages 10-12, but I know if you turn 13 after a certain date you play at the lower level. It’s weird that I remember that, but when I played in Little League I had to play with the ids a year older than me because I have a July birthday. Since they’re pushing the fact that she’s 13 I’m guessing her age is fine. There are so many issues with this story it’s not even funny and it was announce yesterday that Davis will be on the cover of Sports Illustrated this week. As the competition gets tougher what happens if she goes out and has a bad outing on the mound. It’s not like they can go out there and rip her performance; she’s just a kid. Is she the first girl to play in the Little League World Series? A girl being a talented little league player isn’t new to me at all. When I was playing one of the top players every year I played was a girl by the name of Cathy Wold. It’s been a long time and I hope I got her last name correct. Davis herself has handled all of this new-found fame well. She’s even said that she’d like to play college basketball at the University of Connecticut and play point guard for Geno Auriemma. I believe Davis and her team the Taney Dragons of Philadelphia who represent the Mid-Atlantic region in this tournament play tonight (Wednesday) against the Las Vegas team.

The player who dominates the sports news every time you turn on a major sports only network is Johnny Manziel. If Manziel isn’t living it up and posting photos of himself and some other famous person to his Instagram account he might be flipping off the team he’s playing. With all the so-called outside distractions that reporters love to comment on when it comes to Manziel he’s shown on the field that he’s as good if not better than any other quarterback that was drafted in May. Even though the Cleveland Browns named Brian Hoyer the starting quarterback for Week 1 Manziel made his case on the field and the Browns could’ve easily went with Johnny Football. Manziel completed 63.6 % of his passes this pre-season and rushed for 27 yards on 6 carries and his quarterback rating was a 79. If you look at the stats Manziel outplayed Hoyer, but remember these stats were put up against 2nd team players. Right now Hoyer is the best choice as starting quarterback for the Browns. Cleveland’s first three games would be rough for a player like Manziel and Hoyer’s experience should help them. The Browns open Week 1 in Pittsburgh against the Steelers. They’re home Week 2 and Week 3 against the New Orleans Saints and then the Baltimore Ravens before they get a Bye in Week 4. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if come Week 5 in Tennessee that Manziel isn’t under center against the Titans.

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

While the NFL pre-season is up and running and that has a lot of people preparing for their fantasy football drafts don’t forget about MLB and some of the good pennant races they still have going. A couple of division leaders are trying to pull away, but there are still some divisions up in the air.

In the American League East the Baltimore Orioles (69-51) have gotten away from the Toronto Blue Jays (63-60) by 7 1/2 games entering Saturday’s games. The New York Yankees (61-59) are in 3rd place 8 games back and the Tampa bay Rays got themselves back to .500 at 61-61 and are 9 games out of 1st place. Defending World Series champions the Boston Red Sox (55-66) are 14 1/2 and last in this division. With a little over 40 games left in the season the Orioles look like they’re going to win this division. Baltimore is 7-3 in their last 10 games while the Blue Jays are the opposite 3-7 in their last 10 games. The Yankees have hung around this race most of the season, but you have to wonder if they’re really a threat.

The A.L. Central has become an interesting division to watch these last few weeks. This division has always been the Detroit Tigers (65-55) to lose and right now they find themselves 1 1/2 games behind the Kansas City Royals (67-54) who’ve been the hottest team in baseball and are 9-1 in their last 10 games. 1 1/2 games isn’t much of a division lead and don’t sleep on the Cleveland Indians (61-60) just 6 games back. The Chicago White Sox (58-64) are 9 1/2 back, but are a non-factor in this division. The Minnesota Twins (54-66) are 12 1/2 games out and in last place in this division. Can the Tigers get righted and win this division or will the Royals stay hot and win it. Don’t forget that Cleveland was a playoff team last season.

It seems like when I hear an expert talk about the A.L. West they act like the Oakland A’s (73-49) have this division wrapped up. Going into play today the A’s have just a 1 game lead over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (71-49) in the division. The Seattle Mariners (66-55) are trying to hang around, but are 6 1/ games back. The Houston Astros (51-72) are out of last place in this division for the first time since they moved into it a few seasons ago as the Texas Rangers (47-75) are at the bottom. By the way the Astros are 22 1/2 games out of first while the Rangers find themselves 26 games out.

Over in the National League, the Washington Nationals (67-53) have opened up a little room between themselves and the Atlanta Braves (62-60) in the N.L. East for the first time this season. The Nationals are 6 games up on the Braves and 8 games ahead of the Miami Marlins (60-62) who I’m sure everyone had fading by this point in the season. The New York Mets (58-65) are 10 1/2 games out while the Philadelphia Phillies (54-68) with a veteran roster find themselves 14 games out of 1st place.

In the N.L. Central the Milwaukee Brewers (68-55) seem to have been in 1st place all season long, but this is still a very close division race. The Brewers have a 2 games lead over the St. Louis Cardinals (65-56) who’ve been hanging right there with the Brewers this season. The Pittsburgh Pirates (64-58) are right there in this division race as well just 3 1/2 games back. It can be tough to jump multiple teams this time of year, but that’s what the Cincinnati Reds (61-61) need to do in this division. The Reds are just 6 games back at this point of the season, but like I mentioned it will be tough to jump three teams. The only team out of the N.L. Central race is the Chicago Cubs (52-69) 15 games behind.

The N.L. West has been a two team battle for a while now and the Los Angeles Dodgers (70-54) have opened up a 5 1/2 game lead over the San Francisco Giants (63-58) headed into Saturday’s action. The reason the Dodgers have opened up a little lead is they are 6-4 over their last 10 games while the Giants have struggled at 3-7 over their last 10 games. The San Diego Padres (57-64) find themselves in 3rd place in the West 11 1/2 out. The Arizona Diamondbacks (53-69) and the Colorado Rockies (47-75) are the final two teams in this division. The Diamondbacks are 16 games out of 1st while the Rockies are 22 games behind the division leader.

How did your pre-season standings compare to what’s going on right now? I have three of the division winners picked correctly right now. Of course there are a little over 40 games left in the regular season for most teams and some of these races are so tight that a game here or a game there can change everything. It should make the last month plus of the baseball season exciting to watch even though a lot of people have switched to football mode. I’m telling you don’t give up on baseball; you might miss something!

You can follow me on Twitter @Burketime

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

If you listen to Sports Time Radio you know that we play in two 20 team fantasy leagues for baseball and football. One of the leagues is done using an auction format style draft while the other uses a more common snake style draft. Well the football drafts are coming up at the end of the month and it’s time to get ready for them. The auction league is much, much easier for me to get ready for. The snake league on the other hand can be difficult. How many of you have wanted a player and he goes a pick or two before you where going to take him and then you have to scramble and find another player at the last second? To add a little more pressure when that happens we run the leagues through Yahoo and there is a time limit on how long you have to make a pick. What’s given me trouble the last few seasons has been the running back position. We have to start two running backs each week and of course you’d like at least one running back on your bench to cover your bye weeks. That means that 60 or more running backs can be selected in our draft and if you don’t get a quality guy early on your in trouble. I’ve been trying to get running backs in order and here’s what I’ve come up with; maybe it will help you out as well.

If you happen to be drafting in the top four picks you’re going to get a top quality running back. You could put the names of Adrian Peterson, Vikings, LeSean McCoy, Eagles, Jamaal Charles, Chiefs and Matt Forte, Bears into a hat and as long as that player stays healthy you’ve got your guy. I have them ranked with Charles #!, Forte #2, Peterson #3 and McCoy at #4. Charles is on top because he doesn’t have the weapons around him that Forte has and that’s a good thing in fantasy football. Peterson has never really been involved in the Minnesota passing game and that can hurt his value especially in PPR (Points Per Reception) leagues. I think McCoy will be hurt be the addition of Darren Sproles this off-season more than people think he will be. There are four guys who aren’t quite to the level of the top 4 but you’d like to have. Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks, Eddy Lacy, Packers, Le’Veon Bell, Steelers and DeMarco Murray, Cowboys. Most experts would’ve included Lynch with the top-level guys, but look for his carries to be cut down this season. He;s also added up quite a few carries the last couple of seasons and that will wear on a running back. Bell and Lacy are kind of the same back. Both of them are coming off of solid rookie seasons where each of them missed games due to injuries. When healthy though they’ve proven they can get yards and touchdowns for fantasy owners. If there was a guarantee that Murray would play all 16 games this season he would be right up there with the top guys, but he always seems to be injured. If you take him this season and he stays healthy you could have a fantasy star on your hands. For me it’s Lynch at #5, Bell at #6, Lacy #7 and Murray #8. As we move along it gets tougher to rank guys as it’s guys coming off of injuries or guys who haven’t reached their potential yet. Montee Ball, Broncos, Doug Martin, Buccaneers, Arian Foster, Texans, Alfred Morris, Redskins, Andre Ellington, Cardinals, Giovani Bernard, Bengals, Reggie Bush, Lions and C.J. Spiller, Bills. For me I have Ball at #9; he had surgery for an Appendectomy, but all signs point to him being ready for Week 1 and he’s got Peyton Manning as his quarterback. #10 is Martin; he’s coming back off of an injury, but his new head coach s Lovie Smith and old school guy who likes to run the football. #11 I’m going with Spiller. There’s so much talent there and you think sooner or later he’s going to have that breakout season. I have Morris at #12 and Foster at #13. These are two guys in new systems with new head coaches that had great success in their old systems. Will that carry over? Bernard is #14; if he was the only back in the Cincinnati system he;d be ranked higher, but you have to wonder how much time he’ll share. Bush is #15; another guy in a time share situation and that’s to bad. He might out up big numbers if he played every down. Ellington lands at #16 for me. His head coach has praised him and said he’d be the every down back; you’ll just have to take that chance. We’re headed towards what would be the end of our 1st round; so if you reach a little here I can understand that. This next group could reward your choice. Ben Tate, Browns, Ryan Mathews, Chargers, Rashad Jennings, Giants and Toby Gerhart, Jaguars. Tate is #17; this is his first shot at being a teams every down back. He has had some injury issues; so there may be some risk reward with this pick. Jennings is at #18 another running back who needs to prove he can stay healthy, but if he does the Giants like to run the ball and if he’s their guy you’ll get the fantasy points. Gerhart would be that “sleeper” pick at #19. He’s the every down guy on a bad Jacksonville team, but he is effective in the passing game; so he should score points for you even on a bad team. Mathews split time last season, but got the majority of the carries; so I have him at #20. He’s another guy who needs to stay healthy for his fantasy owner. Remember you’re going to need to start two running backs every week. Zac Stacy, Rams, Frank Gore, 49ers, Chris Johnson, Jets and Ray Rice, Ravens. #21 Stacy could be a guy who ends up being better than this draft positions. The thing that may hold him down is the division he plays in. #22 Rice is in a new system run by Gary Kubiak and backs in that system do well. Remember though he’s suspended the first two games of the season. Johnson at #23 is with a new team that has a young quarterback and may rely heavily on the running game. That would be a huge plus for Johnson’s fantasy owner. Every year they say that #24 Gore’s carries are going to be cut or he’s going to play less and every year he puts up solid numbers. There’s always a chance that could happen; so there’s some risk with this pick. Bernard Pierce, Ravens is way up my board at #25. He’ll get to start the first two games of the season and Kubiak’s system has always featured two running backs. #26 Stevan Ridley, Patriots. you know he’s going to split time when you draft him, but he’s the rushing guy in that split. He should also be the guy getting the goal line carries. #27 Joique Bell, Lions maybe the best of the time share running backs out there. He should get those short yardage goal line carries. #28 Trent Richardson, Colts They seem dedicated to giving him carries. Will produce some numbers based on opportunities, even if he doesn’t wow you while doing so. #30 Steven Jackson, Falcons At one time a top-tier fantasy running back, but those skills appear to be gone. He should still get the bulk of the carries in this offense. #31 Darren Sproles, Eagles he goes from one offense where he fit in well to an offense where he might be a perfect fit. This is a pick that may pay off big for you. #32 Bishop Sankey, Titans should be the first rookie running back off of the board. The concern may be that he doesn’t get the goal line carries. #33 DeAngelo Williams, Panthers he’s been a let down for me before and I’ll try to stay away from him, but it’s that time of the draft. #34 Pierre Thomas, Saints he should get the most playing time out of their three headed backfield. With Sproles gone he could be used in the passing game more. #35 Danny Woodhead, Chargers had a good season last year and you’ll be looking for him to repeat that. #36 Shane Vereen, Patriots is mostly used in the passing game, but from time to time will get a carry. #37 Fred Jackson, Bills he’s Spiller’s back up, but if there’s an injury or if Spiller doesn’t produce Jackson could be a value pick. #38 Knowshon Moreno, Dolphins was the breakout running back last season, but left Denver. Had minor knee surgery recently. #39 Chris Ivory, Jets they like to run the football and someone has to carry it when Johnson doesn’t have it. #40 Mark Ingram, Saints I bought the hype that he would breakout last season and it cost me, but here I am again making him my last ranked running back. Here are a few more names in no particular order if you;re still looking for running backs. Khiry Robinson, Saints, Lamar Miller, Dolphins, Maurice Jones-Drew, Raiders, Andre Williams, Giants, Terrance West, Browns.

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

Are you surprised that Tiger Woods missed the cut yesterday at the PGA Championship? I think I was more surprised that he decided to play than I am that he missed the cut. It was the last tournament of the season for Woods and I wonder if that played into his decision to go out and try to play. Woods played in just seven PGA tournaments this season and won’t qualify for the Fed Ex Cup playoffs that start in two weeks. There was some talk of Woods playing in the Ryder Cup, but you’d have to think that right now it’s better for him to rest and try to recover. I just kind of have a feeling that we’re not going to see Woods in a tournament for a while.

Rory McIlroy is leading the PGA Championship at -9 and has a one shot lead over Jason Day and Jim Furyk. Ryan Palmer, Rickie Fowler and Mikko Ilonen are just two shots back at -7 under. Phil Mickelson is tied for 7th place going into Saturday’s round and is three shots behind McIlroy at -6 under par. McIlroy has been the hottest player on the tour lately and will see if he can add a second major win in a row during these next two rounds.

Kevin Durant left Team USA this week citing mental and physical exhaustion. Durant likely would have split his time between the two positions, starting at small forward. Now Team USA’s best options there are first-timers Gordon Hayward, Chandler Parsons and Kyle Korver, none of whom have made NBA All-Star teams. Anthony Davis, a 21-year-old, is the only All-Star frontcourt player left for Team USA, unless Love decides to play now that his trade to the Cleveland Cavaliers is agreed upon. I have to wonder if the Paul George’s injury had anything to do with Durant’s decision. Durant plays a lot of basketball and you can’t blame him for wanting some time off. His team; the Oklahoma City Thunder goes to the NBA playoffs every season and that adds games to his year as well as these tryouts and basketball camps. You can see where it could get mentally and physically draining on a player. Sacramento Kings forward Rudy Gay has been added to Team USA’s roster to replace Durant.

The NFL pre-season got up and running last night. I know there’s been a Hall of Fame game then the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens played Thursday night. Friday had more of a full slate of games. Just some quick take a ways from last nights action. The Chicago Bears defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 34-28, but Bears tight end Martellus Bennett did not participate do to his suspension. Blake Bortles was solid in his preseason debut Friday night, throwing for 117 yards and leading a second-half drive for a field goal in a 16-10 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Bortles went 7 for 11 for 117 yards in the game. Matt Cassel outplayed rookie Teddy Bridgewater in the Minnesota Vikings’ opener a 10-6 win over the Oakland Raiders. Cassel went 5-6 for 62 yards while Bridgewater was 6-13 for 49 yards. Derek Carr went 10-16 for 74 yards on the Raiders side, but did throw and interception. Carolina Panthers Pro Bowl quarterback Cam Newton did not play in Friday night’s preseason-opening 20-18 victory over the Buffalo Bills. This is not a setback for Newton, who underwent surgery in March to tighten tendons in his left ankle, as much as it is precautionary. In St. Louis Michael Sam got an extended look at defensive end in the St. Louis Rams’ pre-season opener in a 26-24 loss to the New Orleans Saints. Just a quick little NFL pre-season wrap up from last night.

Did you have the Baltimore Orioles leading the American League East by 5 games at this point in the season? Well that’s right where the Orioles are. A 5 game lead over the New York Yankees. I guess you could see the Orioles in 1st place being led by first base man Chris Davis; no. Davis has had some injuries this season and is having a down year coming off of 2013. Davis does have 20 home runs and has driven in 55, but he’s hitting .198 for the season. Then you’re thinking catcher Matt Wieters is having a break out season; no. Wieters is on the disabled list having playing in just 26 games for Baltimore this season. So how have the Orioles gotten themselves into 1st place. Adam Jones and Nick Markakis lead the offense as full-time players and a great free agent signing of Nelson Cruz have helped. Makakis is hitting .287 with 10 home runs and 39 RBI’s and has been a great defender in right field. Jones is hitting .284 with 22 home runs and 70 RBI’s while being a top defensive center fielder as well. Cruz is supplying the big power numbers for Baltimore this season with 29 home runs and 77 RBI’s. Shortstop J.J. Hardy;s power numbers have been down, but he’s gotten his average up to .281 and leads the team in doubles with 25. Wei-Yin Chen is leading the pitching staff in wins with 12, but Bud Norris and Chris Tillman have 9 wins apiece. After Tommy Hunter’s injury Zach Britton has stepped in and locked down the closer role. Darren O’Day has been a top set up guy with 18 holds and the Orioles went out and added left-handed pitcher Andrew Miller at the trading deadline. Will see if the Orioles can hold off the Yankees and the Toronto Blue Jays down the stretch in the A.L. East.

So how was your week?

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

It’s looking more and more like Tiger Woods won’t be playing in this weeks PGA Championship. Woods aggravated his back injury hitting a shot and almost falling into a bunker. He managed to get through a few more holes before having to withdraw from last weeks tournament. There has been no official word from Woods on if he’ll be playing this week, but it would take a miraculous recovery for him to do that. With Woods out injured the media is scrambling to find a face to put on television. They’ve tried this a few times and I’m guessing they’ll turn to Rory McIlroy. McIlroy won last week and won the last major played; The Open Championship a few weeks ago. I seem to remember the media has tried this before with McIlroy and it didn’t work out, but who knows how things will go this time. I don’t know why they have to try to put a face on every tournament instead of just running the best golfer out there as the tournament is going on. I guess they figure no one will watch if they can’t find a guy to out into Tiger’s spot. Besides McIlroy here are 5 other golfers who might be holding the Wanamaker Trophy after Sunday’s final round. Watch Adam Scott, Bubba Watson, Rickie Fowler, J.B. Holmes and as a wild card this week Hideki Matsuyama. Just a few guys I think the course fits well and have good chances to win.

I just heard a report that Woods has shown up at the golf course and is going to play a practice round today and see how his back is. I bet every reporter covering this tournament is hoping Woods back holds up.

Well I heard the start of my favorite debate yesterday. What debate you ask. Well it’s time for everyone to start figuring out how to give Mike Trout the American League MVP this season. Miguel Cabrera has won the award the last 2 seasons, but his stats are a little down this season and if they’re going to give Trout the MVP this may be the year to do it. Now you’re going to hear them push Trout’s Wins Above Replacement (W.A.R.) so be ready for that. The biggest issue I have with this stat is it’s estimated. You don’t estimate a players batting average, home runs, RBI’s or stolen bases. Again I’ll say that Trout is the best position player in baseball, but has he had a MVP season to this point? Right now Trout is 12th in Batting average, 5th in home runs, 4th in RBI’s Remember they pushed the fact the last two 2 seasons that Trout stole bases and Cabrera didn’t. Trout is tied for 23rd in stolen bases this season. So while there is no clear-cut candidate for MVP right now, but there are still a couple of months to go in this season. Will someone break out and win the award or will the experts get their way and finally get to give Trout the MVP. Who are some of the other candidates for MVP in the American League. You know the MVP is going to come off of a playoff team; so let’s see who’s out there. The Baltimore Orioles best player this season is Adam Jones. Jones has 21 home runs, 69 RBI’s and is hitting .285. The Toronto Blue Jays might be a wild card team with Jose Bautista being their best player, he has 21 home runs, 65 RBI’s and is hitting .292. The New York Yankees are hanging around the wild card race; it looks like Brett Gardner is having the best season for New York. Gardner has 15 home runs, 50 RBI’s and is hitting .283 and is in double digits for stolen bases at 18. Detroit should win the American League Central barring some type of collapse. Victor Martinez is having the best season for the Tigers. Martinez has 23 home runs, 66 RBI’s and is hitting .324, but remember he’s a full-time (DH) designated hitter. The Oakland A’s should find a playoff spot, but who’s their best everyday player? How about Derek Norris? Norris has 9 home runs, 41 RBI’s and is hitting .295 but has only played in 84 of the A’s games this season. Brandon Moss and Josh Donaldson both have hit 23 home runs this season. Donaldson has 78 RBI’s while Moss has 72 RBI’s but Donaldson is hitting .244 while Moss is hitting .251. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim look to grab one of the wild card spots. No argument with Mike Trout being their best player. The Seattle Mariners still have a chance at a wild card spot and Robinson Cano is their best player. Cano is hitting .329, but his power numbers are down. He has 8 home runs and has driven in 62 RBI’s this season. Did any of those numbers jump out at you? I mentioned that these guys still have a couple of months to add to these stats and see if someone can win this award. Let’s face it even though he won’t win the MVP. This season the award should go to Houston Astros 2nd baseman Jose Altuve, who is hitting .337 this season and has 4 home runs with 33 RBI’s this season. Altuve isn’t a power hitter and those numbers will be much lower than everyone else’s, but he does lead the American League in stolen bases with 44. We all know Altuve has 0% chance to win the MVP and the Astros aren’t good enough and he isn’t even on a lot of people’s radar. I’d be surprised if he even found his way into the top 5 of the voting, but right now he’s the best player in the American League. See what happens to me when they start talking about this stuff. Have I ever told you how much I hate the WAR stat?

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

If you’re an Indiana Pacers fan the worst possible thing happened last night in the scrimmage for Team USA basketball. George’s leg landed and then buckled at the base of the basket stanchion after he fouled James Harden on a drive to the basket just 27 seconds into the fourth quarter. George suffered a open tibia-fibula fracture and had surgery on it last night. George is expected to remain hospitalized for about three days. One of the reports that came out said that while there didn’t appear to be additional damage besides the fractures, doctors believe George likely will miss all of next season, though no official prognosis has been given. The White team led George’s Blue team 81-71 in the scrimmage at the time of the injury, but the rest of the game was cancelled after George got hurt.

The Indiana Pacers had the best record in the Eastern conference last season before losing in the conference finals to the Miami Heat. George is the Pacers best player averaging 21.7 points per game, 3.5 assists per game and 6.8 rebounds per game. In 19 post season games last season George’s scoring average increased to 23.6 points per game. With the majority if not all of the top NBA free agents signed by now the Pacers don’t really have to many options to try to replace George outside of the organization. Remember the Pacers lost Lance Stevenson as a free agent in the off-season. I guess will see if the Pacers male a move and try to add a player like Shawn Marion or Al-Farouq Aminu to fill some of the void left by George’s injury.

The MLB non-waiver trading deadline was July 31st and a lot of teams made moves before the deadline. The day start with the Boston Red Sox making their 1st of s couple trades they would make by sending Jon Lester, Jonny Gomes and cash to the Athletics for Yoenis Cespedes and a Competitive balance pick. The day ended with the Detroit Tigers, Seattle Mariners and Tampa Bay Rays making a three team deal. The Tigers landed the big prize in this deal getting David Price. The Mariners got the right-handed bat a lot of experts say they needed in Austin Jackson and Tampa Bay came away with three players Nick Franklin, Drew Smyly and top shortstop prospect Willy Adames. The Red Sox also sent John Lackey, minor league pitcher Corey Littrell and Cash considerations to the St. Louis Cardinals for Allen Craig and Joe Kelly. By far the busiest team at the trade deadline Boston made two other trades sending Andrew Miller to Baltimore for minor league left hander Eduardo Rodriguez and then trading Stephen Drew and cash to New York Yankees for Kelly Johnson. It was a year where major league players were traded for major league players, but as always there was a share of prospects moved in deals. The Yankees added another infielder getting Martin Prado from the Arizona Diamondbacks for minor league catcher Peter O’Brien and a player to be named later. The Diamondbacks also Gerardo Parra to Milwaukee Brewers for two minor leaguers Anthony Banda and Mitch Haniger. The A’s sent Tommy Milone to the Minnesota Twins to get back outfielder Sam Fuld. The mariners did land a 2nd right-handed hitter getting Chris Denorfia from the San Diego Padres for Abraham Almonte and minor league pitcher Stephen Kohlscheen. The Houston Astros had said earlier in the week that they would be willing to trade a starting pitcher and they did sending Jarred Cosart, Enrique Hernandez and Austin Wates to Miami Marlins for Jake Marisnick, Colin Moran and Francis Martes. If you where listening to the show yesterday (Friday) you heard us talking about the Cubs trade to get another prospect. The Cubs traded Emilio Bonifacio, James Russell and cash to Atlanta Braves for Victor Caratini.

I think I got through all of the trades from deadline day and now will see if these deals work out for the stretch run. Of course there will be questions out there. Did the Rays get enough in the David Price deal? If Jon Lester is just a rental for the A’s; do they have to win the World Series to validate this trade? As this plays out the last couple months of the season will get these answers.

Did your favorite team make a move? Did they make themselves better or did they ship off players from their major league roster for prospects?

So how was your week?

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

Is there another sports league that gets more negative publicity than the National Football League (NFL)? It seems like almost daily there’s another NFL player arrested for something or failing a drug test. There’s the ongoing storyline with Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice and his now wife. ESPN’s Steven A. Smith was suspended over the comments he made about the situation. There’s the suspension of Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon. Gordon not only failed a drug test, but then got arrested for DUI. Just a month ago Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman John Abraham was arrested for DUI. Just in the month of July besides Gordon; Jimmy Smith of the Baltimore Ravens, Keelan Johnson of the Philadelphia Eagles, Jo-Lonn Dunbar of the St. Louis Rams and Jacksonville jaguars wide receiver Justin Blackmon have all been arrested for different offenses. There was also Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay’s arrest for DUI and I didn’t even mention that former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez is still in jail awaiting trial for murder. I also left out former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe. I thought Kluwe was trying to do something good when all of this first started with him, but more and more it’s starting to seem like he’s just out for himself.

Even through all of this the NFL remains the most popular sport in the United States. If you’re reading this I’m guessing you have at least one (1) if not more NFL fantasy drafts coming up. I myself actually have 3 (three) fantasy drafts coming up. I have a money league team that I share with Mr. Fantasy. Then there are the 2 (two) Yahoo fantasy football leagues we have. There’s the Sports Time Radio league which is an auction style draft and then there’s the league we’ve had for years titled Next Year is Here; which is a more traditional snake style draft. If you’re interested in joining either of our leagues they are free and run through Yahoo sports; email me at Sportstimeradio@hotmail.com

The Major League Baseball (MLB) trading deadline is tomorrow or at least the first trading deadline is tomorrow. Is your favorite team a buyer or a seller this season? David Price looked like he was going to be the big pitching prize on the market this season, but then his team the Tampa Bay Rays began to play better. Now the talk has turned to Boston Red Sox left-hander Jon Lester. Lester is a free agent after this season and the Red Sox look to be out of it in the American League (A.L.) East. Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington has said he’d need to be blown away by an offer to move Lester as the Red Sox hope to resign him in the off-season. It looks like the St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates, Los Angeles Dodgers and Seattle Mariners are the primary suitors for Lester heading into Wednesday. The Miami Marlins aren’t entirely out of the Lester sweepstakes. However, the Marlins won’t part with top prospect Andrew Heaney in a Lester deal or a deal for any rental player. Last night, Lester was scratched from his scheduled start tonight. A clear indicator that the Red Sox are looking to deal there ace. Lester may not be the only Red Sox starting pitcher headed out of Boston at the trade deadline. John Lackey’s name has come up in trade rumors with the Kansas City Royals and the Los Angeles Dodgers showing the most interest right now. Lackey’s five-year, $82.5MM contract with the Red Sox contained a clause that gave Boston a 2015 club option at the league minimum in the event that he missed significant time with an elbow injury. A torn ulnar collateral ligament that required Tommy John surgery triggered that clause, making Lackey a highly appealing trade chip even to teams with the most modest of payrolls. It seems as if the Dodgers are in on even big name pitcher or just pitcher whose name comes up on the trade market. They’ve been linked to Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies and San Diego Padres closer Joaquin Benoit. Benoit got the Padres closer job when Huston Street was trade to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. It seems like teams are looking for pitching, pitching and more pitching. Will have to wait and see if any of these big names pitchers changes teams and how much a team will have to give up to get one. If your favorite team could land a Lester, Price or Hamels in a deal it could lock up a playoff spot for that team and maybe get them into the World Series.

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.

Now that NFL training camps are open fantasy football drafts should start happening. Yesterday (Friday) on Sports Time Radio we spent the entire show discussing football. There’s also suppose to the first Mr. Fantasy mock draft coming soon; so look for that. The conversation of who would be the #1 overall pick in our league came up. I believe that it will be Philadelphia Eagles running back LeShom McCoy or Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles. Mr. Fantasy added in Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson. While any of these 3 would be good choices I think Charles is the pick here. Out of these 3 running backs Charles is the only one with an experienced NFL quarterback in Alex Smith. While Nick Foles had a break out season last year for the Eagles there are still some questions about him and remember he didn’t play a full season. Even though Peterson is used to have what you would call a below average quarterback under center it allows teams to stack the line of scrimmage against him and it does hurt his numbers. Can you just imagine the kind of numbers Peterson might out up with just an average quarterback. Does Peterson having Matt Cassell, Christian Ponder or rookie Teddy Bridgewater handing him the ball make you think teams won’t be keying on him. Top running backs always need help from a quarterback and while McCoy will get some help from Foles I don’t think Peterson will get enough from his quarterback and Charles will get the most from Smith. If you don’t end up with a top 3 pick; what do you do? Well with the Marshawn Lynch hold out Matt Forte clearly looks like the next best running back on the board. After Forte there are a group of players that could have great seasons for you or could leave you looking at your team asking yourself why you drafted this guy in the 1st round. In our league you have to start 2 running backs a week; so we have to hunt up other guys as well. I have three running backs that I’m looking at and wondering if I get them as my 2nd running back will they be worth that spot. Toby Gerhart is with the Jacksonville jaguars now and all reports are saying they like him as a 3 down back. If this is the case even on a bad team Gerhart might be worth a shot. This is the first time Gerhart will be the #1 running back for a team and that may have him trying to prove something. Another running back who hasn’t really been under the radar the last few seasons, but has changed teams and is that teams #1 running option is Ben Tate. The Cleveland Browns signed Tate to be their #1 running back and take some pressure off of Brian Hoyer to start and then Johnny Manziel, Tate has put up good number before as Arian Foster back up with the Houston Texans, but in Cleveland he’s the clear-cut #1 running back. The 3rd guy on my list is Rashad Jennings now with the New York Giants. David Wilson is coming off a serious neck injury and even when healthy was a disappointment last season. Jennings has some injury concerns of his own, but the Giants like to run the football and this could increase his numbers for you. Jennings should be the Giants #1 running back and it’s nice to have the #1 running back on a year that likes to run the football. If your that Fantasy football guy who likes to try to find the best rookie running back this may be a tough season for you to do that. Off the bat it seems like the only one who might get a reasonable amount of playing time would be Bishop Sankey of the Tennessee Titans. While Sankey is scheduled to split time with Shonn Greene; Sankey is the receiving back out of the pair. This should help Sankey pick up points from 20 yard line to 20 yard line, but it’s Greene who the Titans will use in-goal line situations. That means Greene will steal some touchdowns that belong to Sankey and of course points from your team. As always it’s still early in the NFL season and injuries change things in a big, big hurry. Will have to see how pre-season plays out, but it’s always fun to talk about it.

It seems like when Dan the Man wasn’t looking the San Francisco Giants took the National League West division lead from his Los Angeles Dodgers. While the Giants only have a half of a game lead over the Dodgers as I’m writing this a lot of baseball experts had the Giants as dead when the Dodgers went past them into 1st place earlier in the season. In pre-season picks we all went with the Dodgers to win the West, but a lot of people made that choice. I did have the Giants in the playoffs as one of the wild card teams. As the trade deadline draws closer you wonder if either team will make a move to try to separate themselves in the division. There has been some talk that Matt Kemp would be okay with being traded by the Dodgers and you have to wonder what they could get in return for him. Kemp is signed through 2019 for around $20 million dollars a season. I guess the question I would ask is would Kemp the right combination of prospects and a whole bunch of money be enough for the Dodgers to land David Price. Dan the Man’s ears just perked up. Yes I said David Price. While the Tampa Bay Rays have worked their way back into the pennant race in the American League East you have to wonder if a deal like that could happen. Would the Dodgers be willing to deal a Joc Pederson, Julio Urias, Corey Seager or Alexander Guerrero in a package to bring back Price. It would be a lot to give up, but it could give the Dodgers a World Series. Without a deal by either the Giants or the Dodgers will have some fun watching the N.L. West these last couple months of the season.

You can find Sports Time Radio on BlogTalk Radio and you can find me on Twitter @Burketime.