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

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.

Now that National League Football (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 (three) would be good choices I think Charles is the pick here. Out of these 3 (three) 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 (two) running backs a week; so we have to hunt up other guys as well. I have three (3) 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 (three) 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 (1) 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.

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Every time I heard someone talk about the New York Yankees making a trade they ta;l about how they need to add pitching. Well the Yankees made a trade yesterday and it was for a third baseman. The Yankees dealt infielder Yangervis Solarte and minor league pitcher Rafael De Paula to San Diego in exchange for Chase Headley. Headley has been struggling this season in San Diego. In 77 games Headley was hitting.229 with 7 home runs and 32 runs batted in (RBI). Headley’s big season was 2012 where he finished 5th in the Most Valuable Player (M.V.P.) voting. He’s battled injuries since then and hasn’t regained his form. Maybe a move to New York helps Headley find that 2012 form again. Solarte had been getting regular playing time for the Yankees, but was sent to the minors a few weeks ago. Solarte appeared in 75 games for the Yankees hitting .254 with 6 home runs and 32 R.B.I.’s. De Paula was pitching in Class A ball for the Yankees. He was 6-5 in 17 starts and had and Earned Run Average (E.R.A.) of 4.15. Will the Yankees go out and try to get more pitching like people say they need. The Yankees have talked to the White Sox about left-handed starting pitcher John Danks, but it never got farther than talks.

It looked like the biggest pitcher that would be on the trade market would be Tampa Bay Rays lefty David Price. You have to wonder if he’s even available right now. Tampa Bay is 5-3 in their last 10 games and are currently on a 6 game winning streak. Tampa bay is 48-53 and 8 games out of 1st place in the American League East. With 60 games left Tampa Bay can easily make up those 8 games, but I don’t think they could do that without Price. Will this winning streak be enough to get Tampa Bay to hold onto Price or is there a team out there that can bowl the Rays over with an offer they can’t pass up. It’s going to take quite an offer to get Price and you have to wonder if someone even has the prospects Tampa Bay would want in a deal for Price. Will find out in 8 days if Price is going anywhere.

I saw an interesting segment on which teams should’ve trading players and who they should be trying to trade. The thing I found interesting about this was the two (2) experts they had in this segment had the Philadelphia Phillies moving quite a few players. They had the Phillies dealing or trying to deal 1st baseman Ryan Howard, second baseman Chase Utley, shortstop Jimmy Rollins, outfielder Marlon Byrd, staring pitcher Cliff Lee and closer Jonathan Papelbon. Some of these players may be dealt by the Phillies, but all of them I don’t think that will happen. The Phillies are 13 games out of 1st place and in last place in the National League East, but if these players were traded it may be the biggest in season make over of a major league team. As nice as it is to talk about these players being traded you must have a team that’s interested in them for that to happen. While pitching always draws interest and I could see Papelbon and Lee being traded. Do you want any of the other Phillies listed? Byrd is the one player I’ve actually heard talked about. It’s been said the Seattle Mariners might have an interest in Byrd. Seattle is looking for right-handed hitting power and Byrd has 19 home runs and 21 doubles so far this season. I haven’t heard any of the other names Howard, Utley or Rollins being mentioned in any trade talks. I guess it is fun to speculate and think about what a guy could do for a contending team if he was traded there.

Are you ready for some football? All the NFL teams training camps will be up and running by this weekend. Are you ready for your fantasy season? How do you think your favorite team will do this season? Can the Seattle Seahawks repeat? Slowly but surly these questions should start to get answered as we see more and more of these teams. We have two (2) twenty (20) team fantasy leagues that Mr. Fantasy, Dan the Man and I play in. One is an auction league; so you have to figure out what you’re willing to pay for who. Our other league is a regular snake style draft set up. You need to start two (2) running backs every week in this league and with twenty (20) teams it can be tough to find a good mix of backs. They come off the board pretty fast and I think I know who the first five (5) or six (6) picks will go. Not in exact order, but the players that will be picked. After that it’s tough to figure out who’s going where. Hopefully I’m picking in the Top 5 in this years draft.

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The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have acquired Huston Street from the San Diego Padres in a 6 player deal. Prospects Taylor Lindsey, R.J. Alvarez, Jose Rondon and Elliot Morris will head to San Diego while the Angels will also get right-hander Trevor Gott. Street has 24 saves and has only given up 4 earned runs in 33 appearances for an ERA of 1.09. Ernesto Frieri started the season as the Angels closer and did get 11 saves, but had his issues along the way and was eventually dealt to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Joe Smith moved into the closer role after the Frieri deal and picked up 15 saves to this point for the Angels. Street is in his 10th season and the Angels will be his 4th team. He has closed for the Oakland A’s, Colorado Rockies and of course the Padres before the trade. Street has 258 career saves with his high water mark being 37 saves for the A’s in 2006. The back-end up the bullpen was the Angels weakness going into the season, but with the trade for Street they get an experienced closer who should help keep them in the American League West race. The Angels are 1 1/2 behind the A’s in the West and would claim a wild card spot right now. The top two teams in the A.L. West the A’s and the Angels have made big trades. Does this mean the Seattle Mariners have to make a deal to stay in the A.L. West race? The Mariners are currently 9 games behind Oakland, but would be the 2nd wild card team right now.

I’m not sure how many of you where rooting for the New York Yankees this season. With it being Derek Jeter’s last season I thought they might get themselves into the playoffs and Jeter would go out that way. Now with the pitching injuries the Yankees have had I don’t think will get to see Jeter in the playoffs one more time. Masahiro Tanaka has issues with the ligament in his pitching elbow. No one has said the magic Tommy John word when it comes to Tanaka, but you have to wonder if that surgery is down the road for him. The Yankees have also announced that CC Sabathia’s season is officially over. Sabathia is scheduled to have arthroscopic debridement surgery this coming Wednesday. No team can lose it’s top two starting pitchers and hope to compete; so sadly for Yankees fans and Derek Jeter fans it looks like his career will end at game 162 this season.

As you’ve known for a week or so now LeBron James signed a 2 year deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Well now James wants Kevin Love to be a Cavalier and the trade rumors have started. Unlike James’s situation when he went to Miami, Love has a contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves; so Cleveland just can’t sign him. The trade rumor I’ve heard the most has Cleveland sending this year’s #1 overall draft pick; Andrew Wiggins, last years #1 overall draft pick Anthony Bennett and a 2015 1st round draft pick to Minnesota for Love. It’s being reported that the Timberwolves want more than this for the Cavaliers for Love. James must realize that the way the cavaliers roster is right now that they’re too young and inexperienced to win and NBA title and adding a player like Love brings the Cavaliers closer to that title. Don’t forget though that the Golden State Warriors have long had an interest in Love. The Warriors are offering a package that includes David Lee and Harrison Barnes. Minnesota would like Klay Thompson in any deal they make with Golden State, but right now the Warriors have been hesitant to include Thompson in any deal. The Chicago Bulls where the 3rd team that had major interest in Love, but with the signing of Pau Gasol and Nikola Mirotic signing the Bulls are out. I mentioned earlier that James only signed for two seasons with Cleveland. Will we have to go through “Decision 3″ with James? I don’t think that will happen. Two years is a good signing by James and his people. After that 2nd season the new television contract kicks in for the NBA and the salary cap should go up allowing James to get more money in a couple of seasons. I don’t think Cavaliers fans should panic about the short-term deal for James; I think it was just a smart business move by his agent.

So how was your week?

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So this may be the slowest sports week of the year. Major League Baseball is on their All-Star break. Most of the big name free agents in the National Basketball Association have signed with teams. National Football League training camps don’t open until next week for most teams. The National Hockey League gets pushed to the side unless they’re actually playing games. Even the World Cup has ended; oh what to do.

If you’ve been following NBA free agents and where they ended up signing, did you notice that the Los Angeles Clippers didn’t sign any players? Could that be because Donald Sterling still owns the team? This is going to be the case right into the regular season unless something big happens. Even though Sterling was offered a unbelievable $2 billion dollars for the Clippers I don’t think he wants to sell the team and will do everything he can legally to hang on to them. While I don’t side with Sterling or the comments that he made he is allowed due process like any other American is and we have to deal with this. I don’t know why he didn’t take that offer and run; since it was way over what the team is worth, but he didn’t. It looks like his family would like him to take that offer, but that might end up being decided in court as well. As it looks, this will drag out into the NBA regular season and how will this affect the Clippers? Would you go to a Clippers game if Sterling still owns the team? Why would Sterling hang on to this team if attendance drops and the Clippers start to lose money. Who knows when this will wrap up as it looks like Sterling is going to go through every and any legal channel he can find to some how try to hang onto the Clippers. It’s a tough spot for the NBA and new commissioner Adam Silver to be in to start the season.

Did you watch the MLB All-Star game last night? I think the MLB All-Star game is far and away the closest to an actually game than any of the other sports. The American League defeated the National League 5-3. Max Scherzer was awarded the win while Pat Neshek took the loss. Glen Perkins of the hosting team the Minnesota Twins got the save for the American League. Mike Trout won the Most Valuable Player award. Trout was 2 for 3 with a triple and 2 RBI’s in the game. While Trout was a good of choice as any, weren’t you secretly rooting for Derek Jeter to win the MVP in his last All-Star game? I can honestly say that I was and Jeter did enough to win the award, but Trout did a little more. Jeter went 2 for 2; leading off the bottom of the 1st with a double and scored the 1st run for the American League. Maybe it would’ve been overkill had they given Jeter the MVP award, but hey Mariano Rivera won it last season pitching just one inning. Jeter got his moment to say goodbye after 6 innings as Alexei Ramirez came out to replace Jeter after the American League had taken the field. It was a nice moment for the 14 time All-Star as Jeter waved to the fans and tipped his cap. Jeter waved multiple times at the National League dugout and I think he hugged everyone in the American League dugout.

The British Open starts tomorrow (Thursday) or as it’s just being called now The Open. ESPN has the coverage and you know they have to be jumping up and down that Tiger Woods has decided to play. While I think it would be a bit of a surprise if Woods ended up winning this tournament, but it would be a great scenario if it happened. Woods isn’t that far removed from being injured and you have to wonder if he’s 100% healthy. I’m sure Woods is most people’s pick to win this weekend, but there are some other golfers to watch. Lee Westwood should’ve won The Open last year at Muirfield and he may bounce back and win this year. How about Bubba Watson? He can play big in big tournaments or he could go out and double bogey the front nine, but he’s fun to watch. Graeme McDowell may surprise some people this week. He’s from Northern Ireland and should be familiar with the course; so don’t be surprised to see his name high on the leaderboard though the weekend. So there are a couple of other names other than Tiger Woods to look out for over the weekend for you.

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So LeBron James made a decision without us having to watch a decision special and I’m very happy about that. Not a real surprise move by James; he’s going back to Cleveland. You pretty much had to figure he was either going to stay with the Miami Heat or go back home to play for the Cleveland Cavaliers. I did throw out the Houston Rockets as a dark horse team in the show, but that was a long, long shot at best. I have no issues at all with LeBron going back to Cleveland; my biggest issue was the way this was covered. ESPN cancelled their regular programming to cover this story. Was it really that important? While I understand James is the best basketball player in the world and him switching teams is a big sports story with the way it was covered you would’ve thought the Messiah had returned to Earth. I was trying to find sports highlights last night and every show had the LeBron signing as the lead story; which it should’ve been, but did half to three-quarters of the show have been about it. I even ended up seeing the shot you always get of LeBron”s home in Cleveland. The weird thing though was all of the media outlets knew he wasn’t there and they still went to his house; so we could see the end of his driveway and the security gate. Was this really necessary coverage since James himself announced he was going to Brazil to watch the World Cup final. To be fair basketball is my least favorite of the 4 major sports and I’m sure that played into the fact that I thought this was incredibly stupid coverage. Let’s break this signing down into a sports perspective and not the major media garbage they turned it into yesterday. By signing James the Cavaliers automatically become a contender in the Eastern conference and to a lesser extent a contender for the NBA title. Remember the Cavaliers are a very young team and young teams don’t normally win NBA titles. James will play with point guard Kyrie Irving (22 years old), but Irving has had some trouble staying healthy. Also on the Cavaliers roster 2014 1st round draft pick Andrew Wiggins (19), 2013 #1 overall pick Anthony Bennett (21), Dion Waiters (23) and Tristan Thompson (22); Cleveland does still have veteran center Anderson Varejao on their roster with these young players. Now this roster and players I listed could all change through trades and there are already rumors of those out there, but if this roster stays intact this is a very young team with no playoff experience. Even with the greatest basketball player in the world on it can they win a championship. There three rumors I heard yesterday where. 1) a trade with Minnesota for Kevin Love. Love did say he would sign a long term with Cleveland if traded there. 2) Ray Allen would be signed as a free agent to rejoin James and 3) Mike Miller would be another free agent signing. There where some other NBA free agent moves yesterday even though you wouldn’t know it from the media coverage; remember only LeBron matters to them. I’ve been saying for weeks now that Chris Bosh needed to get out of James’s shadow and see if he’s still a top player in the NBA. While he didn’t sign with the Houston Rockets like I suggested he do he did get a 5 year $118 million dollar contract to stay with the Heat. While no one see Miami as the top team in the eastern conference they’re still a playoff team and now it’s up to Bosh and Dwayne Wade to keep them relevent. One of the under the radar free agents appears to be on the move as well. Isaiah Thomas agreed to a 4 year $28 million dollar deal and will be sent to the Phoenix Suns in a sign and trade. The next big NBA free agent show to drop will be Carmelo Anthony and while I bet he stays with the New York Knicks there where reports last night that the Chicago Bulls where still in the running to sign him. The Bulls are also the front-runners to sign Pau Gasol, but they both can’t be signed by the Bulls. If your favorite team hasn’t made a move yet there are still some quality players still out there as free agents besides Anthony and Gasol. Greg Monroe is a restricted free agent and while the Detroit Pistons could match any offer he gets a team could make him an offer to good to refuse; or that Detroit just can’t match. Paul Millsap is an unrestricted free agent and a good NBA big man if your team needs some inside help. Swing man Luol Deng is out there as well as Lance Stephenson. So your favorite team could still find a guy to help them this off-season.

It seems to be major injury week in Major League Baseball (MLB). The St. Louis cardinals lost starting Catcher Yader Molina for 8-12 weeks with a torn ligament in his thumb. The New York Yankees put Japanese import Masahiro Tanake on the disabled list (DL) with what turned out to be a tear in his UCL ligament. Also the Cincinnati Reds lost 2nd baseman Brandon Phillips for 6-8 weeks with a torn thumb ligament. It always hurts to lose a quality starting pitcher like Tanaka I’m not sure the Yankees where a playoff team with him, but in the cases of Molina and Phillips their teams are in the race for 1st place in the National League Central. St. Louis finds itself 1 game out of first place going into today’s game and Cincinnati is just a 1 1/2 games out of 1st. Molina is the best catcher in baseball and while his offense has been down this season there no way to replace what he does behind the plate. St. Louis is going to try to fill Molina’s spot from within the club, but you have to wonder if the recently designated for assignment A.J. Pierzynski might get a look from them. Cincinnati has Ramon Santiago who can fill in for Phillips for now and they also have Skip Schumaker who has plated 2nd base at the major league level before. Schumaker did just go on the 7 day DL for a possible concussion, but I still don’t think Cincinnati goes outside of the organization to fill Phillips’s spot.

So how was your week?

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The baseball trading deadline is at the end of the month, but the Oakland A’s and the Chicago Cubs got things started on July 5th. The Cubs traded two starting pitchers; Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija to the A’s and received shortstop Addison Russell, Billy McKinney, Dan Straily and a player to be named later or cash considerations. Living in the Chicago area this has been talked about quite a bit. I’ve heard a lot of baseball people say the Cubs got a great deal, but did they? Hammel and Samardzija are top of the rotation pitchers while the Cubs have potential. Straily started the season in the Oakland rotation and was so bad he was optioned to Triple A. McKinney is in Class A ball; that’s a long way away from being in the major league. The best player baseball people say the Cubs got in the deal was shortstop Russell; who was in Double A at the time of the trade and injured. For this trade to come out good on the Cubs end doesn’t Russell have to be a break out major league player? Shouldn’t McKinney at least get the majors and be a solid player. Shouldn’t Straily be a 4th or 5th starter for the Cubs. There are so many if’s involved in this deal for the Cubs I’m not sure you can say it’s good on there end to start with. Now it may work out to be a great deal for the Cubs, but can you call it that way right now or should you wait to call it a great deal. Remember you don’t always get John Smoltz for Doyle Alexander or Mark McGwire for T. J. Matthews, Blake Stein and Eric Ludwick. I gave Cubs fans a break there and they all know what I’m talking about. Or course having Hammel and Samardzija wasn’t going to get the Cubs into the playoffs any time soon; so they might as well move them for prospects who might be major league ready when and or if the Cubs ever improve. Does this trade have to get the A’s into the World Series for it to be a good deal for them? The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim also made a trade on July 5th. The Angels got left-handed pitcher Joe Thatcher and outfielder Tony Campana from the Arizona Diamondbacks for outfielder Zach Borenstein and minor league pitcher Joey Krehbiel. I’m not quite sure if this move by the Angels is equal to the move that the A’s made, but it should make the American League West fun to watch. The Diamondbacks made another trade the next day sending starting pitcher Brandon McCarthy to the New York Yankees for pitcher Vidal Nuno. You have to believe the Yankees where looking for a veteran starting pitcher since it looks more and more like C.C. Sabathia will be lost for the season. The Yankees still have a shot at being a playoff team and they’ll need a veteran starter like McCarthy in their rotation. As the deadline gets closer their will be more and more trades made as team try to get ready for a playoff run.

If you listen to the show you know I’ve been very tough lately on Chris Bosh. Bosh was offered a 4 year $88 million dollar deal by the Houston Rockets and hasn’t taken it yet because he apparently is waiting to see what LeBron James does. If you don’t remember Bosh used to be a Top 10 or maybe even a Top 5 player in the NBA now he’s an after thought in Miami. Bosh’s last year in Toronto he averaged 24.0 points per game. He’s never averaged over 20.0 points per game with Miami. I think Bosh needs to get out of the shadows of James and Dwayne Wade. While Wade isn’t the player he used to be he’ll always be the face of the Miami Heat. Wade was their draft pick and won a title before James and Bosh got their. I’m telling Bosh to go to Houston take that deal and try to win a title with James Harden and Dwight Howard. If Bosh passes up the Rockets deal and signs a veteran exception or whatever the NBA calls it then he’s a coward and he has no confidence in his own ability. It would be sad for Bosh if I thought he had more talent than he thinks he does.

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Here we go with the now 2nd annual Sports Time Radio All-Stars. Dan the Man, Mr, Fantasy, Schaumburg Stu and I have all picked the players we think should be playing in this years All-Star game. Here’s how the voting was handled. A player got 8 points for a 1st place vote. 6 points for a 2nd place vote. 4 points for a 3rd place vote, 3 points for a 4th place vote, 2 points for a 5th place vote and 1 point for a 6th place vote. We picked 3 players each at Catcher, 1st Base, 2nd Base, Shortstop and 3rd Base, 6 Outfielders, 6 Starting Pitchers along with 4 Relievers. We ended up with four players being unanimous selection; three in the National League and one in the American League. Here’s how the voting came out. The point total a player accumulated will appear in parentheses next to his name.

Catcher: American League
Salvador Perez (24) Kansas City Royals; Kurt Suzuki (22) Minnesota Twins; Derek Norris (14) Oakland A’s; Yan Gomes (12) Cleveland Indians.
National League:
Jonathan LuCroy (28) Milwaukee Brewers; Yader Molina (20) St. Louis Cardinals; Buster Posey (14) San Francisco Giants; Miguel Montero (6) Arizona Diamondbacks; Evan Gattis (4) Atlanta Braves.

1st Base: American League
Miguel Cabrera (32) Unanimous, Detroit Tigers; Jose Abreu (18) Chicago White Sox; Edwin Encarnacion (18) Toronto Blue Jays; Brandon Moss (4) Oakland A’s.
National League:
Paul Goldschmidt (32) Unanimous, Arizona Diamondbacks; Anthony Rizzo (18) Chicago Cubs; Freddie Freeman (12) Atlanta Braves; Adrian Gonzalez (6) Los Angeles Dodgers; Justin Morneau (4) Colorado Rockies.

2nd Base: American League
Jose Altuve (28) Houston Astros; Robinson Cano (26) Seattle Mariners; Ian Kinsler (14) Detroit Tigers; Brian Dozier (4) Minnesota Twins.
National League:
Dee Gordon (22) Los Angeles Dodgers; Anthony Rendon (14) Washington Nationals; Daniel Murphy (12) New York Mets; Scooter Gennett (8) Milwaukee Brewers; Chase Utley (8) Philadelphia Phillies; Neil Walker (4) Pittsburgh Pirates; Matt Carpenter (4) St. Louis Cardinals.

Shortstop: American League
Alexei Ramirez (26) Chicago White Sox; Alcides Escobar (18) Kansas City Royals; Derek Jeter (12) New York Yankees; Erick Aybar (8) Los Angeles Angels; Xander Bogaerts (4) Boston red Sox; Elvis Andrus (4) Texas Rangers.
National League:
Troy Tulowitzki (32) Unanimous Colorado Rockies; Hanley Ramirez (14) Los Angeles Dodgers; Starling Castro (10) Chicago Cubs; Brandon Crawford (6) San Francisco Giants; Dee Gordon (6) Los Angeles Dodgers; Jhonny Peralta (4) St. Louis Cardinals.

3rd Base: American League
Josh Donaldson (26) Oakland A’s; Adrian Beltre (20) Texas Rangers; Kyle Seager (12) Seattle Mariners; Evan Longoria (8) Tampa Bay Rays; Lonnie Chisenhall (4) Cleveland Indians.
National League:
Todd Frazier (32) Unanimous Cincinnati Reds; Casey McGehee (22) Miami Marlins; Matt Carpenter (10) St. Louis Cardinals; David Wright (4) New York Mets; Anthony Rendon (4) Washington Nationals.

Outfield: American league
Mike Trout (30) Los Angeles Angels; Jose Bautista (17) Toronto Blue Jays; Micheal Brantley (16) Cleveland Indians; Yoenis Cespedes (9) Oakland A’s; Adam Jones (8) Baltimore Orioles; Melky Cabrera (6) Toronto Blue Jays; Nelson Cruz (4) Baltimore Orioles; Alex Gordon (3) Kansas City Royals; Alex Rios (2) Texas Rangers; Jacoby Ellsbury (1) New York Yankees.
National League:
Andrew McCutchen (28) Pittsburgh Pirates; Giancarlo Stanton (24) Miami Marlins; Yasiel Puig (17) Los Angeles Dodgers; Carlos Gomez (10) Milwaukee Brewers; Charlie Blackmon (7) Colorado Rockies; Hunter Pence (4) San Francisco Giants; Ryan Braun (4) Milwaukee Brewers; Mike Morse (1) San Francisco Giants; Billy Hamilton (1) Cincinnati Reds.

Starting Pitching: American League
Felix Hernandez (25) Seattle Mariners; Masahiro Tanaka (22) New York Yankees; Mark Buehrle (12) Toronto Blue Jays; Max Scherzer (12) Detroit Tigers; Yu Darvish (8) Texas Rangers; David Price (8) Tampa Bay Rays; Chris Sale (4) Chicago White Sox; Scott Kazmir (4) Oakland A’s; Jon Lester (1) Boston Red Sox.
National League:
Adam Wainwright (30) St. Louis Cardinals; Clayton Kershaw (18) Los Angeles Dodgers; Johnny Cueto (16) Cincinnati Reds; Zach Greinke (12) Los Angeles Dodgers; Julio Teheran (5) Atlanta Braves; Tim Hudson *4) San Francisco Giants; Josh Beckett (2) Los Angeles Dodgers; Tim Lincecum (2) San Francisco Giants; Madison Bumgarner (2) San Francisco Giants; Steven Strasburg (1) Washington Nationals/

Relief Pitchers: American League
Greg Holland (26) Kansas City Royals; Fernando Rodney (24) Seattle Mariners; Koji Uehara (9) Boston Red Sox; Glen Perkins (8) Minnesota Twins; Wade Davis (4) Kansas City Royals; Dellin Betances (4) New York Yankees; Jake McGee (3) Tampa Bay Rays; Joba Chamberlain (3) Detroit Tigers; Casey Janssen (3) Toronto Blue Jays.
National League:
Francisco Rodriguez (30) Milwaukee Brewers; Huston Street (17) San Diego Padres; Craig Kimbrel (10) Atlanta Braves; Kenley Jansen (10) Los Angeles Dodgers; Trevor Rosenthal (6) St. Louis Cardinals; Aroldis Chapman (4) Cincinnati Reds; Sergio Romo (4) San Francisco Giants; Jean Machi (3) San Francisco Giants.

Felix Hernandez would be our starting pitcher for the American League while Adam Wainwright would be our National League starter.

There are our choices for this years All-Star game. Agree or Disagree?

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

Tomorrow (Thursday) is the first Sports Time Radio outing. Mr. Fantasy, Dan the Man and I are going to the Kane County Cougars game. Schaumburg Stu was unable to make it this year as his son is in town for a visit. The Cougars are a Class A farm team of the Chicago Cubs and their playing the Peoria Chiefs who are the Class A farm team of the St. Louis Cardinals. Kyle Schwarber was promoted to Kane County by the Cubs a couple of weeks ago; so hopefully he’ll be in the line up tomorrow and will get to see him play. Schwarber was the Cubs #1 draft pick this season and is hitting .379 with 4 home runs for the Cougars. Schwarber was one of the best bats in this years draft and moved up to Class A very quickly. It will be interesting to see him live.The Cougars where 45-25 in the first half and finished in 1st place in the Midwest League Western division. The Cougars are off to a fast start in the 2nd half as well. They’re 9-2 and in 1st place a 1 1/2 ahead of the Peoria Chiefs. The Chiefs finished the 1st half with a record of 39-32 in 3rd place. The Chiefs have first baseman Justin Ringo hitting .354 with 4 home runs and second baseman Mason Katz has 14 home runs, but his batting average is just .212 so far this season. The pitching match up we’re scheduled to see is Chase Brookshire for the Chiefs and Daury Torrez for the Cougars. Brookshire has appeared in 19 games this season with 9 of those appearances being starts. He is 2-3 with a 4.92 ERA and 45 strikeouts in 53 innings this season. Torrez has 14 appearances all starts for the Cougars. He is 8-3 with an E.R.A. of 3.14 in 80 1/3 innings this season. Torrez has a complete game shutout this season as well. I’m hoping we get to see a good game and maybe this will turn into something we can do every season. It would be nice if we could hit some different minor league parks, but I think I’m reaching there. I guess for right now I’ll take this first outing and will see how it goes from there.

I have all of our major league baseball All Star votes, so Saturday’s blog will have the 2nd annual Sports Time Radio All Star team in it. Mr. Fantasy, Dan the Man, Schaumburg Stu and I all picked our teams. We picked three players at every position with six outfielders and six starting pitchers. A player gets 8 points for a 1st place vote, 6 points for a 2nd place vote, 4 points for a 3rd place vote and so on down the line. I’m going to get everything totaled up and have it all ready for you by Saturday. I know one position that will be different for sure and that’s shortstop in the American League. Being that it’s Derek Jeter’s final season he’ll win the fans vote to start at shortstop, but I doubt your picks will go that way. Mr. Fantasy hates the fan voting because of this type of situation, but I don’t have a big problem with it when it’s for a player like Jeter. Jeter is hitting a solid .276 so far; with 2 homers and 20 runs batted in and 5 stolen bases in 72 games this season. Since there aren’t a ton of great shortstops in the American League Jeter is a good of choice as any to start what will be his final All Star game. You’ll see your starting shortstop on Saturday; who’s your American League starting shortstop?

The NBA and NHL free agent frenzy started this week. While the NBA got off to kind of slow start with just a few minor signings and everything being focused on players like Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James. The NHL had a flurry of signings with some big name players moving to new teams. The Colorado Avalanche made a big move signing Jarome Iginla away from the Boston Bruins. Thomas Vanek is leaving Montreal to play for the Minnesota Wild and goaltender Ryan Miller is leaving St. Louis to play for the Vancouver Canucks next season. The Blues did go out and sign center Paul Stastny. Those are a few of the signings that were made on day 1 of free agency. How did your favorite team do on day 1 of NHL free agency? Or are they waiting for LeBron and Carmelo to come visit your NBA city.

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

While we don’t talk a lot of NASCAR on the show I have to say I like this new “win and you’re in format” for the Chase they have set up. Wins should be important and I don’t have to hear a driver interview at the end of a race where he’s talking about it “was a good points day”. While you can still get into the Chase on points a win pretty much gets you in. Right now Matt Kenseth is the first driver without a win; he’s in 11th place at this point of the season. They also bumped the number of driver in the Chase from 12 (twelve) to 16 (sixteen) drivers. Just that 1 (one) win is so important to a driver that I think the drivers without a win are going to really start pressing for a win as the regular season schedule winds down. There are 10 (ten) races left before the Chase starts. It’s a Saturday night race tonight for the drivers in Kentucky; so will see if a driver without a win can get one and a spot in the Chase.

Both the NBA and NHL drafts were held this week. The difference being when your favorite NBA team drafts a player he’s pretty much expected to come in and contribute right away. When your favorite NHL team drafts a player there’s a chance you may not see him for two (2), three (3) or even four (4) seasons. Top draft picks can and have come in and contribute to the team that selects them right away. The Florida Panthers are hoping this is the case with defenseman Aaron Ekblad. Ekblad was the #1 overall pick in the draft by the Panthers. With the 2nd pick the Buffalo Sabres took centerman Sam Reinhart. At #3 the Edmonton Oilers picked another center Leon Draisaitl. With the 4th pick the Calgary Flames took another center Sam Bennett and rounding out the top 5 (five) the New York Islanders picked left winger Michael Dal Colle. By position there where 9 (nine) centers, 9 (nine) right wingers, 7 (seven) left wingers and 5 (five) defenseman were drafted in the 1st round. No goalies; 0 (zero) where drafted in the 1st round. Does it surprise you that no goalies where drafted in round 1?

We covered the NBA draft in Wednesday’s blog; the day before it happened. I don’t think there where any really surprises maybe with the exception of the Orlando Magic making Aaron Gordon the 4th pick in the draft. Did any of the 1st round picks surprise you? We discussed the draft one yesterday’s show with Mr. Fantasy and Dan the Man. Dan was explaining how he dislikes the way trades our made during the draft and didn’t think it made sense. He didn’t understand and I don’t think myself or Mr. Fantasy did either. Why can’t a team who make the trade for that spot make the pick? Here’s an example; with the 10th pick the Philadelphia 76ers took point guard Elfrid Payton. There was a lot of discussion among the panel of experts covering the draft before one of them finally mentioned that their might be a trade. They even had an interview on the draft show with current 76ers point guard Michael Carter-Williams; who actually questioned of he’d still be with the 76ers. Interesting comments by Carter-Williams and if you’re a 76ers fan you couldn’t have been too happy with the way he was talking. Of course all of this was for nothing in the end. With the 12th pick the Orlando Magic took power forward Dario Saric. It was then announced that the Magic and the 76ers had agreed to trade Payton for Saric. Now if this was done before the 10th pick was made why couldn’t have Orlando of made that pick? I would love to say that they where trying to get a story out of Carter-Williams, but I really don’t think that’s what it was. I think they just caught a break their with his reaction. Their where a couple of trades during the draft and they where all handled this way. I don’t get it; can you explain it to me.

So Edwin Encarnacion of the Toronto Blue Jays, Nelson Cruz of the Baltimore Orioles and Jose Abreu are all tied for the American League lead in home runs with 25. Would you like to see these three (3) players compete for the American League in the Home Run Derby? How about on the National League side. Do you want Miami Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton on your team? how about Todd Frazier of the Cincinnati Reds. I know they’ve changed to a bracket format for the home run derby, but it still doesn’t make me want to watch it. I know Major League Baseball (MLB) is trying to make this interesting, but it’s just to long for me. I can remember watching the old Home Run Derby; in black and white. It had two (2) players facing off against each other and they got three (3) outs per inning. With as many players involved in the Home Rune Derby now I’m not sure they could use that format, but for me they need to find a way to make it shorter. I understand it’s done for television and I’ll check in on it to see what’s happening, but I just can’t sit down and watch the entire thing all the way through. Can you watch it from start to finish?

So, How was your week?

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