Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 28, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The NBA Finals ended on October 11th when the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Miami Heat 106-93 to win the series four games to two. Now the NBA wants to start the 2020-21 season on Christmas day and apparently “The King” Lebron James might not be too happy about that.

Lakers forward Dany Green was on a podcast and mentioned that if the NBA does start the season on Christmas day he expect James and a few other veteran player to sit out the first month of the season.

Now the NBA has a big, big money television contract that says they have to play at least 72 regular season games; so a Christmas day start date makes sense. If they end up starting later they’d have to squeeze in those 72 games in a much shorter timeframe.

Now what I’m having trouble understanding is why is this an issue? The Lakers and the Heat would’ve been off for two and a half months, but Green made it seem like that wasn’t enough time off. Unfortunately he never really explained why; so we’re left to guess.

My guess is that the players are selfish and they want that big money, but they don’t want to play the actually games to get it. Now this doesn’t go for all the players in the NBA just the ones that would take that first month of the regular season off.

Now don’t forget that James complained about the All-Star break not being long enough; so the NBA gave it to him. Now the All-Star break is a week long. Remember James wanted that extra time to spend with his family, but then that first year the NBA extended the All-Star break James spent time in Miami with his buddies and then went to a Dallas Cowboys game. Sounds like family time to me.

What these players don’t seem to realize is that no one is watching their games anymore. Just take a look at how far down the ratings fell during the NBA Finals and for that matter the ratings fell for all of the games played in the bubble. Now the NBA got that big money television deal based on their ratings doing well for the networks that they’re games are shown on. With the ratings in the tank do they think that the next television contract is going to be for as much money as this last one was. Of course there isn’t a player out their that’s going to take a pay cut when that smaller television money is offered to them.

Now I’ve mentioned many times that I’ve lost all interest in the NBA and judging by the ratings I’m not the only one. Imagine what the ratings would be if players like James sit out the first month of next season. If they couldn’t get fans to tune in to watch James win a championship he was pretty much handed; how are they going to get fans to watch with star players not playing? I’d love to know an answer to that.

I get that the NBA is a players league and they’ve bowed down to James before; so it will be interesting to see if he pushes for a later start date if the NBA gives in again. It’s really not a good look for any league when one player has so much power.

On Sunday NASCAR started the Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, but only got 52 laps in before the rain came. Now they tried to wait out the rain on Sunday, but where unable to get the rest of the race in. They had originally planned to finish the race on Monday, but the weather wouldn’t allow that either; so they moved it to Tuesday. Well you guess it the weather still didn’t cooperate and they had to postpone the race again. Now the race is scheduled to finally restart at 2:00 p.m. (CST) today; weather permitting.

In case you don’t remember Clint Bowyer was leading the race when the rains came on Sunday. He’s followed by Jimmie Johnson in 2nd, Eric Jones in 3rd, Joey Logano in 4th and Martin Truex Jr rounds out the Top 5 in 5th place.

There are still 282 laps to go; so the running will probably change few times over. That is if the weather allows them to actually finish the race today.

Are you going to watch?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss he live edition of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you want to.

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How was your week

Posted: October 24, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Now I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t understand the Los Angeles Dodgers pitching strategy going into Game 2 of the World Series. I didn’t like the idea of having what their manager Dave Roberts called “a Bullpen game” and in the end I was right. The Dodgers used seven pitchers and even though their offense tried to keep them in the game they got down early and ended up losing Game 2 by a 6-4 score.

Fortunately it doesn’t seem as any of the other things I was concerned about are going to happen. By pretty much giving Game 2 away I was afraid that the Dodgers would allow the Tampa Bay Rays a chance to build some momentum heading into Game 3, but any advantage the Rays had was quickly taken away from them by the pitching of Walker Buehler.

Buehler gave the Dodgers 6 dominant innings in Game 6. He set a record by striking out 10 batters over those six innings. He did give up 1 run which was meaningless as was the 1 walk he had while giving up 3 hits and throwing 93 pitches. If the series goes that long it would be difficult to bet against Buehler in a Game 7.

On the other side of the pitching line Charlie Morton had his worst 2020 post season start in Game 3. Morton gave up 5 runs on 7 hits while lasting just 4 1/3rd innings against a tough Dodgers offense. Morton did pick up 6 strikeouts while walking 1 and allowing 1 home runs and throwing 91 pitches.

The Dodgers got on the scoreboard early with a Justin Turner solo home run in the 1st. They then proceeded to add two runs in the 3rd and 4th innings to take a 5-0 lead and basically put the game away. The Dodgers added a run in the 6th innings while the Rays scored in the 5th and the 9th, but they never got close to a comeback as the Dodgers took Game 3 by a 6-2 final.

Last nights win gives the Dodgers a two games to one lead in the series heading into tonight’s Game 4. The Dodgers are going to start Julio Urias; who I thought should’ve started Game 2 while the Rays are going with Ryan Yarbrough.

Neither one of these young starting pitchers have been allowed to throw very many innings this post season; so it will be interesting how long they last in tonight’s start.

Urias has pitched in four post season games and has managed to get the win in all four of those games, but he’s only thrown 16 innings. His last appearance was against the Atlanta Braves on October 18th when he worked 3 innings throwing 39 pitches. As for Yarbrough he last pitched on October 20th against the Dodgers, but he only pitched 2/3rds of an inning and threw just 19 pitches. Yarbrough has made three post season appearance for Tampa Bay. He’s pitched 10 2/3rd post season innings giving up 11 hits 3 of which have been home runs. He’s allowed 4 runs to score while striking out 6 and walking 3.

How do you see Game 4 going tonight? Do you see the Dodgers taking a big three games to one advantage? Or can Tampa Bay even things up? I’d also like to know which starting pitcher you think will have the better outing tonight?

Now as someone who roots for the Seattle Seahawks I couldn’t of been happier when I heard that Antonio Brown had signed for the remainder of the season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

I understand that may sound weird to some people, but if you think about it while Brown was at one time in his career a top wide receiver in the NFL he has proven that he is a cancer to any team he’s on. Somehow Brown has seemed to have issues on three different teams that are coached by Super Bowl winners. Brown’s issues with the Pittsburgh Steelers led him to be traded to the Oakland Raiders who he never played a regular season game for. From Oakland he went to New England where he played one game before his off field problems led to him being released after playing just one game for the Patriots. That means Brown has had some type of issues with teams run by Mike Tomlin, Jon Gruden and Bill Belichick. That’s a pretty impressive list of coach’s to have problems with.

Now Brown reunites with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay and I’m sure they’re hoping that Brady will be the one who’s able to keep Brown under control. The Buccaneers are coached by Bruce Arians who is in his second year with Tampa Bay. Arians doesn’t have a Super Bowl win on his resume like the other coaches Brown has played for; so right away you have to wonder if Brown couldn’t respect a coach that’s won a Super Bowl do a coach like Arians stand a chance?

You have to think this is a disaster in the making and like I mentioned earlier; I’m glad he didn’t sign with the Seahawks.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the live version of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 21, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

With 28 Major League Baseball teams working on their off season plan the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays are playing the World Series in Arlington Texas at the new home of the Texas Rangers; Globe Life Park. This is the first time in the history of baseball that the World Series is being played at a neutral site.

Game 1 was last night and the Dodgers had Clayton Kershaw ready to make the start while the Rays turned to Tyler Glasnow. Kershaw has been the best pitcher in baseball for probably the past 10 seasons, but he’s had his share of post season struggles and everyone really seems to like to talk about those.

Kershaw came into last nights start with a post season ERA of 4.22, but a struggle was the last thing Kershaw had last night. Kershaw threw 78 pitches over 6 innings for the Dodgers last night. He gave up 2 hits and one run while walking 1 and striking out 8. The only blemish on Kershaw’s start was a Kevin Kiermaier home run.

The Rays have had their offensive issues this post season and with Kershaw rolling along this led to an easy 8-3 Game 1 win for the Dodgers.

The Dodgers jumped out to a lead in the bottom of the 4th inning when Cody Bellinger hit a two run home run to right centerfield.

Kiermaier cut the Dodgers lead in half in the top of the 5th inning when he hit a solo home run off of Kershaw to right field with two outs in the inning.

The Dodgers got that run back plus more in the bottom of the 5th inning. Mookie Betts walked and then stole second. Corey Seager also drew a walk to put runners on 1st and 2nd. Justin Turner struck out for the first out of the inning, but during his at bat Betts stole third while Seager stole second. Max Muncy grounded into a fielder choice scoring Betts and moving Seager to third. Will Smith singled in Seager and Muncy went to third on Smith’s hit. Ryan Yarbourgh was called out of the Rays bullpen and got Bellinger to pop out for the second out. Chris Taylor singled scoring Muncy while Smith advanced to second. Kiki Hernandez pinch hit for Joc Pedersen and singled scoring Smith and moving Taylor up to second, but Austin Barnes flied to left field for the final out of the inning. The Dodgers picked up 4 runs and3 hits in the inning and took a 6-1 lead.

Betts led off the bottom of the 6th inning with a solo home run to right field to give the Dodgers a 7-1 lead. Then Turner and Muncy hit back to back doubles with Muncy’s double driving Turner in to make it a 8-1 game.

Manuel Margot singled to centerfield with one out in the top of the 7th inning. Joey Wendle then followed with a double and Margot advanced to third. Mike Brosseau pinch hit for Ji-Man Choi and singled home Margot with Wendle moving up to third. Kiermaier then singled home Wendle while Brosseau moved up to second to make it an 8-3 game. Mike Zunino lined out back to the pitcher and Brosseau was doubled off of second base to end the Rays inning.

that was it for the scoring on the night as Pedro Baez worked a 1,2,3 8th inning for the Dodgers and Joe Kelly worked a 1,2,3 9th inning as the Dodgers took Game 1 by an 8-3 final score.

Kershaw got the win (W) while Glasnow took the loss (L). Glasnow pitched 4 1/3rd inning. He gave up 6 runs on just 3 hits, but he walked 6, but he did strike out 8 while throwing 112 pitches.

Game 2 is tonight and Tampa Bay will send Blake Snell to the mound to make the start while Los Angeles counters with Tony Gonsolin.

Now Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has already said that Game 2 will be a bullpen game; so who knows how long Gonsolin will actually pitch. The Dodgers used for relievers last night, but none of them threw more than 15 pitches; so the entire Dodgers bullpen should be available for Game 2.

Do you see the Dodgers taking a 2-0 lead in the series tonight or can Snell pitch the Rays back to a 1-1 even series?

Don’t forget to listen to the live edition of the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you do happen to miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you want to.

Also look me up on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: October 17, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The Houston Astros are trying to do something in the playoffs that has only been done one time. That’s comeback from being down 0-3 in a playoff series. The only other team to ever accomplish this feat was the 2004 Boston Red Sox who did it to the New York Yankees.

The Tampa Bay Rays won the first three games games of this series and looked like they’d cruise into their first World Series appearance since 2008, but the Astros apparently decided they weren’t going to make it easy on the Rays.

It’s not going to be easy for the Astros to win four straight games, but they’ll try tonight in a do or die Game 7. Houston is going with Lance McCullers Jr. as their starting pitcher while Tampa Bay turns to Charlie Morton to make the start for them.

These two pitchers faced off in Game 2 of this series. McCullers Jr. gave the Astros 7 solid innings, but ended up being the losing pitcher as he gave up 4 runs on 4 hits, but only 1 of those runs was earned as the Astros defense let him down. McCullers struck out 11 and walked 2 in that start. Morton pitched 5 innings in Game 2 and didn’t give up any runs. Morton struck out 5 and walked 1 while allowing 5 hits in his Game 2 start.

McCullers Jr. has had his share of injuries in his career and missed all of last season as he recovered from Tommy John surgery. McCullers Jr. made 11 starts in the shortened 2020 season, but he logged just 55 innings; so it will be interesting how many quality innings McCullers Jr. can give the Astros tonight.

Morton turns 37 years old next month and just completed his 13 season. There was some talk that 2020 would be his last season, but since it was a season unlike no other maybe Morton will return for what would hopefully be one more full season of baseball. Now Morton did miss some starts this season with shoulder inflammation. He made 9 starts for the Rays and logged just 38 regular season innings and in his last start he just pitched 5 innings.

Will Game 7 turn into a battle of the bullpens? Or will one of the starters be able to pitch deep into the game?

Over in the National League the Los Angeles Dodgers found a way to fight off elimination by winning Game 5 by a 7-3 score. The Atlanta Braves still need just one more win to advance to the World Series as they lead the series 3-2.

Walker Buehler returns to the mound for the Dodgers in Game 6 while the Braves will go back to Max Fried as their Game 6 starter. These two pitchers where the starters for the opening game of this series which the Braves won 5-1.

Buehler went 5 innings in that game giving up 1 run on 3 hits while striking out 7 and walking 5. The strikeouts and the walks pushed Buehler’s pitched total up to 100 pitches over his 5 innings. If Buehler has better control in Game 6 can he give the Dodgers some more innings? and get them into a Game 7.

Fried gave the Braves a quality start as he went 6 innings giving up 4 hits and 1 run while striking out 9 and walking 2. The only run Fried gave up was a solo home run to Kiki Hernandez. Can Fried match his Game 1 start and move the Braves along into the World Series for the first time since 1999.

Now earlier this week the New York Jets released running back Le’Von Bell and no one thought that Bell would be out of work long and he wasn’t. On Thursday Bell signed for the remainder of the season with the Kansas City Chiefs. Bell will receive $679.412 for the rest of this season.

It was a very interesting signing as the Chiefs drafted running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire with the 32nd pick in this past draft. Edwards-Helaire is the Chiefs leading rusher with 344 yards through 5 games and he’s also caught 17 passes for 169 yards.

Is it possible that the Chiefs are disappointed in Edwards-Helaire’s performance? Or was Bell just too good of a deal to pass up on.

I guess will have to wait and see how things play out in the Chiefs offense as Bell learns it and gets used to it.

Now the one group of people this moved bothered was fantasy football owners especially if they spent a high draft pick on Edwards-Helaire thinking he’d be the #1 running back in the high powered Kansas City offense. If Edwards-Helaire and Bell split time in the Chiefs backfield neither player will end up being worth the investment any fantasy owner out into them.

Did you end up with Bell or Edwards-Helaire in your fantasy league? If you did end up with one or maybe bother; how are you going to handle the situation? Do you think you could be successful playing both player at the same time?

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss out of the live edition of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you want to.

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 14, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Though five weeks of the NFL season there are still three teams that haven’t got their first win yet. The New York Giants the New York Jets and the Atlanta Falcons.

Now out of these three teams the Falcons are the only one to have made a coaching change as well as firing the general manager. The Houston Texans where also a winless team until this week and they removed head coach/general manager Bill O’Brien after their Week 4 loss.

Since the Giants head coach Joe Judge is in his first year with the team I doubt they’d make a change during the season, but you have to wonder what the Jets are thinking.

Adam Gase is in his second year as the Jets head coach and has a record of 7-14. Before getting the Jets job Gase was the head coach of the Miami Dolphins for three seasons where he had a combined won loss record of 23-25. In Gase’s first year in Miami they went 10-6 and made the playoffs; so that means he was just 13-19 in his final two seasons there.

Gase has always been looked at as an offensive minded coach and I believe the hope was that he’d be able to develop Sam Darnold into a franchise quarterback, but so far that hasn’t happened.

The Jets used the 3rd pick in the 2018 draft to select Darnold hoping he be their starting quarterback for a long time. Darnold has yet to play a full 16 game season as he missed two games in each of his first two seasons and he won’t play in all 16 games this season as he sat out last weeks game. Darnold has made 30 starts for the Jets and has a record of 11-19. He has a career completion percentage of 59.8% and he has thrown 39 touchdowns compared to 32 interceptions. Now while the Jets failures shouldn’t all fall on Darnold’s shoulders; he’s the quarterback and he’ll be the player they look at.

So the question becomes; would a coaching change and maybe a new offensive philosophy get Darnold’s career on track to be a franchise quarterback?

While the Jets haven’t made a coaching change yet they did make a major move yesterday as they cut running back Le’Von Bell.

Bell was a huge free agent signing free agent signing for the Jets a couple of seasons ago. They gave him a four year deal worth $52.5 million dollars with $8 million dollars as a signing bonus.

After being hugely productive as not only a runner, but as a receiver Bell never really found his footing with the Jets. Now it didn’t help that after his signing head coach Adam Gase actually said he didn’t want to sign Bell. Bell played in 15 games for the Jets last season and had 789 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns. He averaged just 3.2 yards per carry. Bell also caught 66 passes for 461 yards and 1 touchdown.

Bell is just 28 years old and has three 1000 plus yard rushing seasons on his resume; so he probably won’t be out of work very long. Earlier I saw a list of 10 teams that might show interest in bringing Bell in for the remainder of the season.

Here’s the list that I saw of teams that may have interest in Bell. The Chicago Bears, the Kansas City Chiefs, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Cleveland Browns, the San Francisco 49ers, the Tennessee Titans, the Seattle Seahawks, the Miami Dolphins and Bell’s former team the Pittsburgh Steelers. Do see Bell signing with one of these teams? Or do you have another destination in mind for him.

With Bell gone the Jets have Frank Gore and La’Mical Perine as the running backs that should see some carries. Bell missed three of the Jets five games this and with him out Gore is the Jets leading rusher with 204 yards on 64 carries. Perine has rushed for 56 yards on 15 carries. The Jets have just 1 rushing touchdown from a running back and that’s Josh Adams. Do you think Gore who is 37 years old and in his 16th NFL season will be able to hold up as a #1 running back? He hasn’t really been the #1 running back since his final season with the Indianapolis Colts in 2017.

There are a lot of questions for the Jets as the final 11 games of the season play out. Will Gase make it through the season as head coach? If Gase does get through this season as Jets head coach; is he the head coach in 2021? If the season continues to go South and they end up with the top pick in the draft would they take Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence and move on from Darnold? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how the Jets season plays out.

Before I post the blog I’d like you to leave me a couple of baseball predictions if you wouldn’t mind.

Do you have the Tampa Bay Rays sweeping the Houston Astros out of the playoffs tonight? Also do you have the Atlanta Braves winning the next two games of their series against the Los Angeles Dodgers and sending them home? If you don’t see the Braves sweeping; do you see them winning the series with the Dodgers?

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlgTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live it is also available on TuneIn.com where you cn listen any time you’d like.

I’m also on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: October 10, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

When baseball was in spring training and there looked like there would be a 162 game season there where a lot of people predicting that we’d see the Los Angeles Dodgers and the New York Yankees in the World Series.

Well as we all know we didn’t get anywhere near a 162 game season and had to settle for an abbreviated 60 game season with expended playoffs.

Now this shortened season didn’t affect the Dodgers at all as they posted the best record in Major League Baseball at 43-17 and rolled through the first two rounds of the playoffs sweeping the Milwaukee Brewers in the wild card round and the San Diego Padres in the NLDS.

Unfortunately for the Yankees they dealt with about as many injuries as any other team did in the 60 game season. Luckily they got most if not all of their players back to get themselves into 2nd place in the AL East and after a wild card round wipeout of the Cleveland Indians it looked like the Yankees where back to being the team that people had predicted to go to the World Series.

Well those predictions turned out to be wrong as last night the Yankees where eliminated from the playoffs by the Tampa Bay Rays 3 games to 2 in their ALDS series.

The first four games in the series where high scoring as the team combined for 41 runs over those four games, but last night was different. Maybe there where some nerves being that it was an elimination game or maybe the pitchers where just pitching really well, but there where just 3 runs scored as Tampa Bay won Game 5 2-1 to advance to the ALCS to face the Houston Astros.

Both of last nights starting pitchers where coming back to make the Game 5 start on short rest. The Yankees turned to their Game 1 starter Gerrit Cole while the Rays went with Tyler Glasnow who was coming back on just 2 days rest. In today’s baseball this is a rarity and you had to wonder how many innings either starting pitcher could give his team.

As it turned out Cole gave the Yankees 5 1/3rd innings of 1 hit baseball; that hit was an Austin Meadows home run to tie the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the 5th inning. Cole also struck out 9 while walking 2 in his start.

It should come as no shock that Glasnow pitched just 2 1/3rd innings. Don’t forget that the Rays have used an “opener” many times and while that’s normally a reliever in that role coming back on such short rest that role really fit Glasnow here. Now Glasnow kept the Yankees off the scoreboard as he allowed no runs and no hits while walking 2 and striking out 2 while he was in the game.

Nick Anderson was the first of three Rays relievers to coms into the game and he surrendered the Yankees only run; an Aaron Judge home run in the top of the 4th inning to give the Yankees the lead at 1-0.

After the Rays tied it up the Yankees went to Zack Britton out of their bullpen and while he did give up a hit and walked a batter he allowed no runs and struck out 2 in his 1 1/3rd of relief.

Anderson gave the Rays 2 2/3rds innings of relief and then they went to Peter Fairbanks who held the Yankees in check for 2 innings and kept the game tied at 1-1.

In what may be looked at as a little bit of a surprising move the Yankees brought in closer Aroldis Chapman in the bottom of the 7th inning to get the final out; which he did, but you had to wonder how long they’d leave Chapman in the game. It’s rare in today’s game that a closer pitches more than one inning, but this is something Chapman has done before.

After Diego Castillo held the Yankees in check in the tp of the 8th inning Chapman returned to the mound to try and keep it a tie game. It took Chapman just two pitches to get the first out of the inning on a ground out to the shortstop. The second hitter for the Rays that inning was Mike Brosseau. https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/b/brossmi01.shtml Chapman quickly got ahead of him 0 and 2. The next two pitches where balls to even the count at 2 and 2. Brosseau fouled off the next two pitches before taking another ball to make it a full count. Two more foul balls led to the 10th pitch of this at bat which Brosseau lined over the left field fence for a home run and a 2-1 Tampa Bay lead.

Now the Rays still needed three outs to advance to the ALCS and the question would they turn to a Blake Snell or Charlie Morton who where both waring up in the bullpen; not to start the inning as Castillo headed to the mound.

Giancarlo Stanton led off the 9th for the Yankees and after taking the first two pitches for balls he then looked at the next three which where strikes and he was the first out of the inning. Luke Voit was next for the Yankees and he took the first pitch for a ball. Voit also took the second pitch which as a called strike. Voit then swung and missed the next two pitches for the second out of the inning. Now it was all up to Gio Urshela to try and keep the Yankees season alive. Urshela swung at the first pitch and hit a line shot down the 3rd baseline, but Joey Wendle had him played perfectly and was able to snare the line drive before it down into the leftfield corner for the final out and the Rays where headed to the ALCS to face the Houston Astros.

What I’d like to know is; do you consider this an upset? The Rays won the AL East and had the best record in the American League (40-20) over the 60 games season, but there where a lot of people who had picked the Yankees to go to the World Series. Where do you stand on this?

While baseball moves into it’s championship series the NBA was just one Los Angeles Lakers win away from that season being over. Well the Miami Heat had other ideas.

Jimmy Butler recorded another triple-double; 35 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists as well as adding 5 steals as the Heat avoided elimination with a 111-108 Game 5 victory.

The Lakers had their chances to win this game late. With 7.1 seconds left Danny Green missed a 3-pointer, but Markieff Morris grabbed the offensive rebounds. Unfortunately Morris threw the basketball out of bounds allowing Miami to take possession with 2.2 seconds left. Tyler Herro was quickly fouled and he stepped to the free throw line and made both of his free throw attempts giving the Heat a 3 point lead at 111-108. LeBron James heaved up a 40 footer as time expired, but was nowhere close to making it as the Heat picked up their second win of the series.

Now the Lakers are still clear cut favorites to win the NBA title, but they’re going to have to wait to Sunday to try and finish off the Heat. Game 6 is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. on ABC Sunday.

Are you watching the NBA finals? Because no one else is.

Listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live all you have to do is stop by TuneIn.com and you can listen to it any time you want to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 7, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

While the National League just had Game 1 of their divisional series there’s a chance that one of the American League division series could end today. The Houston Astros are leading their series with the Oakland A’s 2 games to none and need just one more win to advance to the championship series. In the other American League series the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays have each won a game.

While it’s pretty clear to see why the Yankees are playing better; they got healthy. The Astros on the other hand are a different story. The only key injury they had was to Justin Verlander and they knew that not only would he not be back for any playoff games, but he’ll be out all of next season. Is it possible that they’re embracing their roles as villains and just running with it. As you know the Astros where caught cheating and while the players where not punished their manager and their general manager where both terminated and then suspended for a full season by Major League Baseball. Could this be the motivating factor that driving the Astros?

After cruising to a 10-5 win in Game 1; Game 2 started off the same way for the Astros. Kris Davis hit a solo home run in the bottom pf the 2nd inning to give the A’s a 1-0 lead. That lead didn’t last long as George Springer hit a solo shot in the Top of the 3rd inning to make it a 1-1 game. The Astros then picked up 4 runs over the next two innings capped off by another Springer home run in the Top of the 5th  while the Oakland A’s where only able to add a run on a Chad Pinder home run. There was no scoring after that top of the 5th as both teams pitching controlled the rest of the game.

Framber Valdez threw 7 strong innings for the Astros. He gave up those two solo home runs which was part of the 5 hits he gave up. He walked 1 while striking out 4. Enoli Paredes and Ryan Pressly each pitched an inning with Pressly picking up the save in the Astros win.

Sean Manaea who didn’t get a start in the wild card series against the Chicago White Sox made the start for the A’s in Game 2. Manaea pitched 4 1/3rd innings giving up 4 runs on 5 hits while striking out 2 and walking 1. Yumeiro Petit gave up the last run to the Astros. Mike Minor, Joakim Soria and Lou Trivino didn’t give up a hit or a run to the Astros over the final 4 innings of the game.

It was originally reported that Zack Greinke would make the Game 3 start for the Astros, but it appears as though Jose Urquidy will take the mound to try and close out the series for Houston. Oakland is going with Jesus Luzardo as their Game 3 starter, but with their elimination just one loss away I’m sure just about everyone is available to pitch for the A’s today.  

As for the Yankees and the Rays. In Game 1 the Yankees got to Blake Snell for 4 runs over his 5 innings of work and while the Rays where ale to cut the lead to 4-3 heading into the 9th inning Giancarlo Stanton put the game away from New York with a grand slam off of Rays reliever John Curtiss. Stanton’s grand slam followed and bases loaded single by Aaron Hicks that made the score 5-3 Yankees. Stanton’s grand slam put the game away giving the Yankees a 9-3 Game 1 win.

In Game 2 last night it was the Rays that jumped out to an early lead. Randy Arozarena hit a solo home run to give the Rays a quick 1-0 lead, but Stanton evened things up for the Yankees with a solo shot of his own to make it a 1-1 game. A 2nd inning homer by Mike Zunino and a 3rd inning home run by Manuel Margot put the Rays up 5-1, but it was Stanton again who came through for the Yankees this time with a three run home run in the 4th inning to make it a 5-4 game. Tampa Bay picked up a run in the 5th inning and then Austin Meadows capped the Rays scoring with their fourth home run of the night to give Tampa bay a 7-4 lead. New York did add a run in the top of the 9th, but it wasn’t enough as the Rays win Game 2 7-5 to even the series at one game apiece.

Rookie Devi Garcia made the start for the Yankees, but last just 1 inning. Garcia threw just 27 pitches giving up 1 run on 1 hit before being removed. J.A. Happ followed Garcia to the mound. Happ pitched 2 2/3rds innings giving up 4 runs on 5 hits while walking 3 and striking out 2. Adam Ottavino pitched 2/3rds of an inning after Happ and gave up a run. Jonathan Loaisiga gave the Yankees an 1 1/3rd giving up 1 run. He was followed by Jonathan Holder and then Nick Nelson who each worked clean innings.

Tyler Glasnow got the start for the Rays. He gave them 5 innings allowing 4 runs on 3 hits while walking 3 and striking out 10. Glasnow was followed by Diego Castillo who pitched an inning without giving up a run. Nick Anderson was next out of the Rays bullpen and he threw 2 scoreless innings. Peter Fairbanks pitched the 9th inning for Tampa Bay and while he did give up a run on 1 hit he was able to close out the game and pick up a save for the Rays.

Game 3 is today. Charlie Morton will make the start for the Rays while the Yankees are going with Masahiro Tanaka as both teams try to take a one game lead in the series.

As for the National League series the Atlanta Braves beat the Miami Marlins 9-5 to not only take Game 1 of that series, but also handing the Marlins their first ever playoff loss. In the other National League series it was the Los Angeles Dodgers who took Game 1 there as they beat the San Diego Padres 5-1. Game 2 in each of those series will be played today. The Braves will start rookie Ian Anderson while the Marlins will start Pablo Lopez. The Dodgers will go with Clayton Kershaw in Game 2 while the Padres have yet to announce their starting pitcher for today’s game.

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkradio.com, but if you miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: October 3, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Well the first round or the wild card round as they where calling it of the Major League Baseball playoffs is in the books and I don’t think there where any really surprises as to which teams are moving forward.

Now I know that there where a few people who thought that the Minnesota Twins would beat the Houston Astros in their wild card match up, but once you looked at Minnesota’s recent playoff history and the fact that they would be without Josh Donaldson; is it a surprise they got sent home? I did think that Minnesota would win a game, but instead they dropped their 17th and 18th consecutive playoff games and are done for the season.

I’m also sure there where a lot of people who thought the Chicago Cubs would beat the Miami Marlins in that wild card match up, but I don’t know where they came up with that or why they thought it would happen. The Cubs started the season off hot and got out to a big lead in the NL Central, but they’ve been a terrible team for about the final 30 games or more and it showed in this series. Of course I do live in the Chicago suburbs; so it’s no surprise I heard everyone picking the Cubs.

Now to me these wild card match ups didn’t even seem like playoff series. They just felt like regular three game series. Maybe it was the fact that their where no fans in the stands to add that playoff type atmosphere or maybe it was the fact that this was just a joke of a season with only 60 games and whoever wins the World Series isn’t really going to be a true champion. I’m not sure which one it was or maybe it was something else all together, but I just didn’t think of this as playoff baseball.

The only thing I found interesting about the entire 8 team playoff set up was the fact that the NL Central had four teams and the AL Central had three teams make this little tournament. Of course all seven of those teams from those two divisions that got into the wild card round where eliminated. I mentioned that the Astros sent the Twins home and the Cubs embarrassed themselves against the Marlins. The rest of the NL Central had the St. Louis Cardinals being knocked out by the San Diego Padres. As for the Milwaukee Brewers and the Cincinnati Reds they where both swept out of the wild card round. The Brewers by the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Reds by the Atlanta Braves. As for the AL Central the New York Yankees beat the Cleveland Indians two straight to send them home and the Oakland A’s knocked the Chicago White Sox out in three games.

I gave the AL Central teams a much better chance to get out of the wild card round than I did the NL Central teams, but in the end they all got knocked out with only the Cardinals and the White Sox managing to win a game.

I also feel tat I was lied to by Major League Baseball. I didn’t look ahead at the playoff scheduling and when I heard tat there would be no off days I was excited to see how teams handled their pitching staffs. What I didn’t realize was that their where multiple days off between each series. I guess it’s my fault for not looking at the schedule, but this really bothered me as they made it seem when they announced this that there would be baseball for at least or up to 15 days in a row. With as quickly as the wild card round ended there are now two days with no baseball games.

Unfortunately for baseball this will give the casual fan plenty of time to find other things to watch and when the playoffs start back up they probably won’t be tuning back in. With both the Cubs and the White Sox out of the playoffs I doubt there will be too many fans from Chicago turning the games back on when they restart on Monday.

Now I understand that no other sports wants to find itself having games on Sunday’s with it being football season, but if you just look at the hit the NBA took in the ratings giving your fans free time allows them to find other things they want to do or watch. Now I’ll still be tuning in because I’m a baseball fan, but will you be watching?

Just like in the wild card round the American League starts things off. The Astros and the A’s start things off on Monday followed by the Yankees and the Rays. Tuesday has all of the remaining playoff teams in action as the National League jumps in with the Padres vs. the Dodgers and the Marlins vs. the Braves.

Hopefully these will be some interesting series, but in all honesty I would’ve liked to have seen Major League Baseball wait until the championship series to have division rivals face off. I’m also wondering what the Dodgers and the Rays get for being the top seeded teams in their leagues. In essence they got nothing if you look at these match ups. Why weren’t the match ups reseeded? It’s not like it would’ve affected travel or anything like that since they’re all going to the same location. It not only seemed like winning your division didn’t mean anything, but also have the best record in your league only gets you the final at bat. How much of an advantage is that?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the live edition of the podcast just head over to TuneIn.com and you can listen anytime you’d like.

I’m also on Twitter @Burketime if you’re interested in looking me up there.

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: September 30, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The American League playoffs kicked off yesterday with the Houston Astros, Chicago White Sox, Tampa Bay Rays and the New York Yankees all picking up wins in Game 1 of their series.

Now today not only does the National get their wild card series started, but the American League will play their Game 2’s today. That means there is going to be a ton of baseball on television to watch, but how are you going to watch it all?

The games today have scheduled start times of 11:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m. 1:00 2:00 p.m. 3:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m. 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. Obviously there’s going to be quite a bit of over run in these games and that’s going to make them difficult to keep up with.

Now while I do have multiple televisions and a couple of other devices that I can stream on, but I don’t have nowhere near enough screens to watch all of these games at the same time. If you have the ability to watch all of these games at the same time I’m very jealous of you.

Let me know if you’re going to try and keep up with all of the games that are going to over run each other or if you just have one or maybe two games that you’re going to focus on.

Humorously we had some technical difficulties yesterday while doing the Sports Time Radio podcast. We where about halfway through the podcast when I got dropped off the line and I was unable to reestablish a connection; so we only about 30 minutes into the podcast.

Now we had covered the American League games that had been played and we where getting ready to move onto the Cleveland Indians/New York Yankees match up when I dropped off. In what was a funny turn of events dropping off may have been the best thing for me.

As we where getting ready to preview Game 1 of the Indians/Yankees series I was going to talk about how I thought that Cleveland was in a good position to beat the Yankees in this short series because of there pitching. I had planned to talk about how Shane Bieber will easily win the American League Cy Young and should be able to handle the Yankees line up in Game 1. Well Bieber had what has to be his worst outing of the 2020 season. He pitched 4 2/3rd inning; he gave up 9 hits and 7 runs while walking 2 and striking out 7. When Bieber exited the game the Indians found themselves down 7-2. That’s not exactly where I thought they’d be with Bieber starting, but it was another case of what do I know.

Facing Bieber was Gerrit Cole and he showed why the Yankees gave him that 9 years $324 million dollar free agent deal this past off season. Cole pitched 7 innings; he gave up 6 hits and 2 runs while striking out 13.

Bieber may have shown during the regular season that he was the dominant starting pitcher in baseball, but come playoff time Cole step up and staked the Yankees to a 1-0 lead and set them up to just have to win one of the final two games to move on to the next playoff round.

Today the Yankees will send out Masahiro Tanaka to try and get them to the next round. The Indians are countering with veteran Carlos Carrasco to try and stave off elimination.

So what do you think; do the Yankees eliminate the Indians today? While you’re at it do you see the Rays, Astros or White Sox finishing off their series today?

I’d also be interested to know what surprised you about any of the Game 1’s that where played yesterday. I think it’s clear that I was very surprised by how easily the Yankees knocked Bieber around and cruised to a Game 1 victory. What surprised you?

While we’re on baseball the Boston Red Sox have decided to make a change at manager after a disappointing season. The Red Sox where 24-36 and finished last in the AL East and while I didn’t expect them to finish in last place I didn’t think they where a playoff contend in any way.

Once the Red Sox lost Chris Sale and Eduardo Rodriguez for the season you knew they where in trouble. There’s no team in baseball that can survive losing their top two starters and still contend.

Now you have to ask yourself; was Ron Roenicke given a fair chance to manage the Red Sox properly or was this the plan all along. I know you’re wondering what plan. Well remember Alex Cora was let go by the Red Sox before the 2020 season for his part in their cheating scandal. Now only was Cora fired by the Red Sox, but he was suspended for one year by Major League Baseball. Well that year is now over and the Red Sox need a manager. I fully expect for the Red Sox to name Cora as their manager again and Roenicke will go back into his role as bench coach. So basically Boston is making a mockery out of Rob Manfred and baseballs rulings.

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast lie on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the live edition of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you want to.

I’m also on Twitter if you want to look me up. I’m @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: September 26, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Now I’ve been told and I’ve always thought of myself as a big sports fan, but I’m starting to wonder if there are just too many sports on for this time of the year?

Just last night we had Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals, Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals in the NBA, there where 17 MLB games played last night. There where 18 games scheduled, but one got rained out. There was also a college football game and don’t forget that sports like tennis and golf have their own channels devoted to them; so fans of those sports can watch at any time. I also forgot to mention that they show horse racing from around the country as well as a NASCAR truck series race and even though it’s called sports entertainment WWE had their show Smackdown on last night.

That’s a lot of channel flipping for a sports fan to do or with so many different sports on it makes it hard for that sports fan to choose what he or she is going to watch. Now this has never happened before since normally the NBA and the NHL are done with their seasons by this point of the year, but 2020 is like no other year.

Unfortunately with all of these choices out there one or more of these sports is going to have a reduction of viewers and in this case it seems to be the NBA that is the sport people are not watching. Now I’ve been wondering why people have chosen to turn off the NBA and while I don’t know for sure I have some ideas.

After the NBA signed their deal with ESPN to televise their games the NBA immediately became the main topic of ESPN’s coverage over ever other sport. Now that should’ve been a good thing, but for whatever reason ESPN focuses that coverage on a limited number of players and it takes an extraordinary performance for someone to even get a mention on Sportscenter.

Unless you’re Lebron James then you’re mentioned on ever and any show that covers the NBA. Even the commercials ESPN runs for the NBA seem to place James over every other player in the league and while he’s one of the best players to ever play in the NBA this isn’t good for business.

After a couple of stops with the Cleveland Cavaliers and one with the Miami Heat James landed with one of the NBA marquee teams in the Los Angeles Lakers a few seasons ago. While media focused on this move they seemed to forget that not everyone is a Lakers fan and they want to hear about their favorite team.

James himself hasn’t done the NBA or himself any favors lately. After the Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks was named the NBA’s MVP James went on an interview after a Lakers playoff victory and instead of talking about the game and winning an championship James complained about not being named MVP. That’s not a good look for the player that the television networks are focusing their coverage on.

Then after Game 3 of the Western Conference finals which is the only game the Denver Nuggets have won in this series against the Lakers James and his teammates complained that he wasn’t getting enough foul calls. James only shot two free throws, but in Game 4 of the series James went to the free throw line 14 times as the Lakers took a 3 games to 1 lead in the series by winning Game 4 by 6 points 114-108. Again this is not a good look for someone who is considered the best player in the game today.

The way James has acted probably isn’t the only reason why the NBA’s ratings are way down; 17% at the last report. It’s also the way that ESPN has presented the game. Have the featured anyone else besides James in a commercial for the league or playoffs? It has to be difficult for the league of 30 teams to be of interest when the focus is on just one player in the league.

To be fair ESPN did their best to try and elevate Zion Williamson of the New Orleans Pelicans, but he was injured quite often this season and that hurt any promotions that he was featured in. The NBA did everything they could to get Williamson and the Pelicans into the playoffs, but the Pelicans decided to limit their future stars minutes instead of making a playoff run which probably would’ve only lasted one round.

I’m sure it hasn’t helped the NBA and their television providers that it’s been quite clear that it’s been set up for the Lakers to win the NBA title from the start of the season. From the point where they magically moved up in the draft to have enough assets to acquire Anthony Davis from the Pelicans it was clear that the Lakers where being positioned as the front runner for the NBA title. Is it ay fun to watch a sport where you know who’s gong to win? Unless you’re a fan of that team I’d have to say no.

Once you start adding these things up and then you add in that it was as down of a year for the Golden State Warriors as it could’ve been there became no real reason to watch the NBA. If it was Stephen Curry and Golden State challenging the the Lakers in the Western Conference finals NBA ratings might actually be up instead of dropping like they have. Unfortunately injuries derailed the Warriors season early on, but they did get the #1 pick in the draft and I don’t think anyone would be surprised if they where challenging the Lakers next season, but that’s not going to help this seasons ratings.

So the Lakers will cruise into the NBA finals and wait for the winner of the Miami Heat/Boston Celtics series to join them in the finals. I doubt it matters which Eastern Conference team gets into the finals as it’s been clear since before this season started that ESPN and the NBA wanted the Lakers to win the NBA title. Now that they’re going to get their wish the question becomes; will anyone watch them win the title?

You can listen to the live edition of the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen anytime you want.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime