How was your week

Posted: August 18, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

I think it’s pretty easy to pick out the Washington Nationals as the most disappointing team in baseball this season. The Nationals have been hanging around .500 most of the season; they are currently 62-61 which puts them 7 games back of the National League East leading Atlanta Braves. There are a lot of questions that Washington has to answer down the stretch.

Will this be the only season that Dave Martinez is the manager? Martinez signed a three year deal to replace Dusty Baker who had guided the Nationals to the NL East title the in the only two seasons he was the manager. When the Nationals didn’t renew Baker’s contract they mentioned how they where interested in a younger manager who would relate better with today’s players and Martinez seemed to have the resume they where looking for.

Martinez started as a spring training instructor for the Tampa Bay Rays in 2006 and 2007. In December of 2007 Martinez was hired as the Rays bench coach. While Martinez had a few managerial interviews during his stint as the Rays bench coach it appeared as though his best chance to get hired as a manager was when Joe Maddon left Tampa Bay to take the Chicago Cubs manager’s job. Martinez was one of three finalist for the Rays job, but Tampa Bay decided to hire Kevin Cash. After not getting the Tampa Bay job Martinez announced that he’d be leaving Tampa Bay. In December of 2014 Martinez signed on with Maddon to be the Cubs bench coach which was the position he was holding when the Nationals hired him.

Martinez has always been looked at as a future manager and it looked as though he found one of if not the best landing spot possible with the Nationals, but it hasn’t worked out this season. With two years left o his contract; does Washington give Martinez another season to show his managerial skill? Or will they make a change?

One of the main goals Washington had hoped to accomplish with Martinez as their manager besides wining a World Series was to convince Bryce Harper to re-sign with them.

Even though Harper is having what has to be considered a down year he’ll still be one of the most sought after free agents this off season. Harper’s batting average has been on heading in the right direction lately as he is now up to .248. While the average may be down the power has been there all season. Harper has 30 home runs to go along with 23 doubles. He has a good chance to surpass his career high of 42 home runs that he hit in 2015 when he was the NL MVP.

As the Nationals have failed to make up ay ground in the NL East the rumors have started that Harper could be traded. As I’m sure you know the trade deadline was July 31st, but teams can still make deals until August 31st as long as a player is put on waivers.

I’ve never understood how these things get started, but there was an un-named (no surprise there) General Manger who stated that Harper would end up with the Philadelphia Phillies. While it’s an interesting scenario and Philadelphia has been predicted by many already as Harper’s landing spot as a free agent this off season I don’t think will see this trade happen.

What kind of deal could the Nationals get for Harper? If you where going to trade a superstar like Harper you’d need to get quite a few big time prospects for him. What team is going to give that up for just a month and a half of having Harper on their team. Imagine if the Phillies gave up two or three of their young starting pitchers and maybe someone like J.P. Crawford who’s had an injury plaque rookie season, but I looked at as a top prospect for Harper and then he signs somewhere else in the off season. I wonder how the Philadelphia fans would react to that.

When rumors like these come out they also seem to forget that the Nationals have stated that they would like to re-sign Harper. I seriously doubt if they traded him that he would sign with them as a free agent this off season.

While I don’t see Harper changing teams before August 31st I wouldn’t be surprised if Washington made some other moves.

Daniel Murphy is in the final year of his contract and finally looks to be fully healthy. Murphy’s batting average is over .300 after struggling after his return from the disabled list. Murphy is currently on a 10-game hitting streak that has seen his average jump 27 points.

Murphy’s bat could be an interesting add for a contender as he’s had post season success. Murphy is a .323 hitter in the post season and he also won the NLCS MVP in 2015 while with the New York Mets.

The Nationals might have some pitchers that could draw some interest. I don’t think that Kelvin Herrera or Ryan Madson would be moved since they’re both currently injured and the deadline is just 13 days away, but it is possible. It’s more likely that a team could be interested in adding a back of the rotation starter like Gio Gonzalez or even Jeremy Hellickson. All four of these players are in the final year of their contracts; so I don’t think the Nationals would get a ton in return for any of them, but they could get something for a player that they’re not going to be bringing back.

What do you see the Nationals doing?

Did bad luck just cost A.J. McCarron his opportunity to be the Buffalo Bills starting quarterback?

McCarron was signed to a two year $8.1 million dollar contract this off season and was looked at as the Bills starting quarterback until #1 draft pick Josh Allen was ready to take over.

McCarron made his start for the Bills Friday night against the Cleveland Browns. During the game McCarron suffered a hairline fracture of his collarbone and it appears that he’ll be out about 4 to 6 weeks. Even if McCarron was to return on the short end of his injury window he’d still miss the final two pre-season games and the first two regular season games.

Besides McCarron and Allen the Bills also have Nathan Peterman on their roster. Most people will remember Peterman from his 5 interception game last season against the San Diego Chargers.

While McCarron has never been a starting quarterback it appeared as though the Bills where going to give him that chance this season. You would have to think with this injury to McCarron that the Bills would turn to Allen as the starter and since he’s the future of the franchise there would be no really reason to go back to McCarron unless Allen was to get injured.

What do you think the Bills will do. Start Allen Week 1? Or let Peterman try to hold don the job for a few weeks until McCarron returns?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that you can also listen to the podcast whenever you’d like at TuneIn.com.

Feel free to look me p on Twitter @Burketime

 

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Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 15, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, fantasy, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The NFL season is right around the corner; so hopefully you’ve started getting ready for your fantasy draft. Of course I’m sure there are quite a few fantasy players who have already had a draft; so I hope it went well for you. I did notice one thing as I was looking at the pre-draft rankings and that is the running back is back.

We have two 20 team leagues that we run through Yahoo.com and in their pre-draft rankings their Top 4 players are running backs. There are 6 running backs total in the Top 10 with the other four slots going to wide receivers. This is quite a turn of events from the last two or three seasons where the wide receivers dominated the Top 10. Now the question is; are you buying the change? and are you going to take a running back with your first pick?

Todd Gurley II of the Los Angeles Rams is ranked at #1 followed by Le’Von Bell of the Pittsburgh Steelers. David Johnson of the Arizona Cardinals is returning from an injury that allowed him to play in just 1 game last season, but he’s ranked at #3. Ezekiel Elliott of he Dallas Cowboys is another running back who missed some games last season, but that was due to a suspension. Elliott takes the 4th spot in the rankings. The other two running backs in the Top 10 are New York Giants rookie Saquon Barkely who comes in at #6. Right behind Barkley at #7 is New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara.

Those are the running backs that found their way into the Top 10, but there are two more running backs that just missed out. Kareem Hunt of the Kansas City Chiefs is ranked at #11 and Melvin Gordon of the Los Angeles Chargers is ranked at #13.

It will be very interesting to see where these running backs come off the board during our draft and how many actually end up being picked in the 1st round.

Do you like the order that these running backs are ranked in? or would you have them in a different order?

As you start to breakdown the rankings with the running backs making a comeback another position would have to take a fall. It appears as though the quarterback position is the one that took the hit.

The Yahoo draft board is broken into 25 players and there’s not a quarterback on the first board. You actually have to go down to #36 before you’ll run into Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers headlines a group of seven quarterbacks who are ranked close. Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks is at #40, Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers is ranked at #42, you’ll find Tom Brady of the New England Patriots at #44, despite returning from a knee injury Deshaun Watson of the Houston Texans is ranked at #48 and then it’s Drew Brees of the new Orleans Saints who’s ranked at #53 that end this pack.

The interesting thing with this is a healthy quarterback who plays in 16 games can rack up some points for you. While Wilson is ranked at #4o this season he was actually the second highest scorer overall in our league last season behind only Gurley II.

Looking back a little more at quarterback scoring from last season and you’ll find Brady was the 7th highest scorer in our league and he was followed by four other quarterbacks. Carson Wentz of the Philadelphia Eagles was 8th, Alex Smith is now with the Washington Redskins, but last season he was our leagues 9th highest scorer as a member of the Kansas City Chiefs. Cam Newton filled out the Top 10 in our league at #10 while Phillip River of the Changers rolled in right behind him as the 11th highest scorer in our league.

There could be a lot of strategy in our league if you can get a player who’s going to end up in the Top 10 or maybe the Top 5 in scoring in the 3rd round or later.

Now we have two 20 teams leagues. One is an auction league and the other is a snake style drafting league. Like I mentioned we run them through Yahoo.com and they are both free. If you’re interested in joining here are the links to the leagues. The first link is the auction league; so the second link will be for the snake style draft league. The drafts are over the Labor Day weekend holiday; so make sure you’re available before joining.

https://football.fantasysports.yahoo.com/f1/210245/invitation?key=80a28bb46f9c54a2&soc_trk=lnk&ikey=9731ec491ee7e0d7

https://football.fantasysports.yahoo.com/f1/210333/invitation?key=afbdffc30a917caf&soc_trk=lnk&ikey=8523ae88376e8c05

Hope to see you in the leagues; good luck.

There have been a couple of more injuries that could impact a couple of playoff teams as the baseball season winds down.

Trevor Bauer of the Cleveland Indians went on the 10-day DL with a small stress fracture in his right fibula.

Bauer was hit in the leg by a comebacker in his last start. Bauer came out of the game after 6 1/3rd innings, but the Indians went on to get him his 12th win of the season as they beat the Chicago White Sox 3-1 on August 11th.

Fortunately the Indians have the largest lead of any division leader in baseball at 12 1/2 games; so they can be extra careful with Bauer and not rush him back.

The biggest issue the Indians face with Bauer is there has been no timetable set for his return. In a perfect world the Indians would get Bauer back in time for him to make a coupe for starts before the Indians head into the post season, but will have to wait and see how his recovery goes.

The Seattle Mariners swept the Houston Astros in a four game series last weekend and had gotten themselves back into the hunt or a wild card spot. Then the Mariners got to add Robinson Cano back onto their roster last night after serving an 80 game suspension. Just while things where seemingly looking up for the Mariners it might have all came crashing down just three hitters into last nights game.

Jed Lowrie of the Oakland A’s was the 3rd batter to face James Paxton last night. Lowrie hit a line drive that went off of Paxton’s left arm. Paxton was removed from the game and luckily the x-rays where negative, but it looks as though Paxton will have to go on the 10-day DL.

Felix Hernandez came out of the Mariners bullpen for the first time in his career to replace Paxton. Hernandez went 5 2/3rd innings in relief, He gave up 2 runs on 5 hits while walking 2 and striking out 2. Hernandez was also he losing pitcher as the A’s beat the Mariners 3-2 last night. That was the second straight game the A’s have beat the Mariners. Seattle now finds itself 4 1/2 games behind the AL West leading Astros and they are now 3 1/2 games behind the A’s for the second American League wild card spot.

The Mariners ad the A’s wrap up their 3-game series this afternoon and if Paxton is going to have to make a trip to the DL the Mariners really needs salvage at least one game in this series. Mike Leake is making the start for Seattle while Oakland is starting Brett Anderson.

Can the Mariners stay in contention with Paxton out? and is it Hernandez who fills that rotation spot?

Yo can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but you can also listen to the podcast any time you want at TuneIn.com.

Don’t forget to look for me on Twitter @Burketime

 

 

How was your week

Posted: August 11, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The last thing that any playoff or World Series contender wants to deal at this point of the season is a serious injury to one of their key players. Unfortunately for the Los Angeles Dodgers this is what they’re going to have to deal with.

Yesterday the Dodgers placed their closer Kenley Jansen on the 10-day disabled list with and irregular heartbeat. Estimates have Jansen out about a month.

Jansen has converted 32 of his 35 save chances this season. He is 0-3 with an ERA of 2.15. His 32 saves ties Jansen with Wade Davis of the Colorado Rockies for the most in the National League.

Jansen was hospitalized after the Dodgers/Rockies game on Thursday, but he was released and allowed to travel from Denver back to Los Angeles; where he will undergo more tests. This isn’t the first time that Jansen has had to deal with an irregular heartbeat. Jansen missed about of month of the season back in 2011 and 2012 when he had this same issue. After the 2012 season Jansen underwent a surgical procedure to attempt to resolve the problem.

While this isn’t the first time Jansen has had to deal with this issue; it’s also not the first time Jansen has had to deal with this issue in Colorado. Jansen’s irregular heartbeat  that occurred back in 2012 also happened while the Dodgers where on a road trip in Colorado. this brings up the question if the thin Mile High air is causing Jansen’s issues.

While first and foremost the most important thing is Jansen heart and his health, but the Dodgers have to continue their road trip in Colorado and they’ll have to do so without one of the best closers in baseball.

With Jansen not at the end of the game on Thursday it was Scott Alexander who ailed down the save in a Dodgers 8-5 win in Colorado. It was Alexander’s 2nd save of the season. There was no save opportunity last night for the Dodgers as they dropped a 5-4 game to the Rockies. Zac Rosscup gave up a couple of runs in the 6th innings and took the loss, but both Dylan Floro and John Axford had scoreless outings in the game.

The question now is who will the Dodgers use to close games? Will they try to use the closer by committee? Or will Alexander get a shot at the job? There are some other options in the Dodgers bullpen, but the only one with full time closing experience is Axford. Caleb Ferguson and Josh Fields each have 2 saves this season, but Ferguson has picked up his saves by pitching more than 3 innings in a game and Fields just start a 6 week rehab program as he recovers from shoulder inflammation. Floro has been a big plus for the Dodgers bullpen as a set up man as he is 1-0 with an ERA of 1.93 in 13 games; so he could be an options, but he’s never been a closer.

Of course there s a chance that the Dodgers could find a closer on the trade market; if that player has made it through or can get through waivers, but who could they go get.

Since Fernando Rodney was just traded from the Minnesota Twins to the Oakland A’s yesterday; he’s off the Dodgers list. I’m guessing if the Dodgers had their choice they’d try to land Raisel Iglesias of the Cincinnati Reds. Iglesias is 28 years old and has converted 22 of his 25 save chances this season. He is 1-1 with an ERA of 2.52 in 46 games this season. The other closer available would probably be Shane Greene of the Detroit Tigers. Greene has converted 24 of his 27 saves chances this season, but has an ERA of 4.13 while going 2-5 in 49 games. There’s also Kyle Barraclough of the Miami Marlins. Barraclough didn’t start the season as the Marlins and has had some issues at the end of games as he is 0-5 with an ERA of 3.75 in 51 games. Barraclough has also blown 6 of the 16 save chances he’s had this season.

Those look like they could be the top closer on the trade market right now, but I think there might be kind of an off the wall option for the Dodgers. Now bare with me here, but what about the Dodgers using Julio Urias to close out games.

Urias has been recovering from shoulder surgery, but just made his season debut pitching 1 2/3rd innings in the Arizona Rookie League last Saturday. Urias topped out at 94 mph on the radar gun while striking out four of the six batters he faced and giving up a hit. Urias did work another 1 2/3rd last night for Rancho Cucamonga which is the Dodgers High Class-A team. Urias gave up 1 run on 3 hits while walking 1 and striking out 2.

There where plans to call Urias up on September 1st and have him pitch out of the bullpen; so why not do it earlier if he shows that he’s healthy. Now this may not be the best idea and there is a chance that the Dodgers wouldn’t want to have Urias pitch on back to back days like a closer might have to, but with the trade market looking weak at this point of the season it gives them an internal option I’m not sure a lot of people thought they’d have.

The Dodgers are currently tied for 1st place in the National League West with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

The Oakland A’s have surged into the second wild card spot in the American League as they’ve been one of if not the best team in baseball over the last month of the season. Oakland currently has a 1 1/2 lead over the Seattle Mariners for that second American League wild card spot and it’s a bit of a surprise they’re here.

When you look at Oakland’s starting rotation you wouldn’t think that this is a playoff team as due to injuries they have used 13 different starters this season. While the A’s expected Sean Manaea to be a big part of their rotation this season they also expected Daniel Mengden, Andrew Triggs and Kendall Graveman to be in he rotation. Graveman was the opening day starter, but both he and Mendgen where ineffective and are now in the minors while Triggs is on the 60-day disabled list with a right tricep strain. The A’s have also been without two more of their young starting pitchers Jharel Cotton and Daniel Gossett. Both pitchers are recovering from Tommy John surgery and aren’t expected back until next season. You can also add Paul Blackburn to that list as he made 6 starts this season before winding up on the disabled list with right elbow epicondylitis. There’s a chance Blackburn could return at the end of this month.

Looking at that list you’d think there’s no way the A’s would be in contention for a playoff spot, but here they are. How did they do it? Well they’ve gotten contribution from some unlikely veteran starters.

Trevor Cahill is 4-2 with a 3.13 ERA in 13 starts. Edwin Jackson is 3-2 with a 2.87 ERA in 8 starts and while Brett Anderson’s ERA is a little high at 4.64 he’s 2-3 over 9 starts. Frankie Montas has also filled in nicely going 5-3 with a 3.75 ERA in 10 starts. Oakland has tried to bolster their starting rotation by adding Mike Fiers who’ made one start for them. Fiers pitched 5 1/3rd innings and got a no-decision. He gave up 1 run and 4 hits while striking out 8.

Now to back up what you wouldn’t call a stellar starting rotation the A’s added bullpen arms through the trade market.

Oakland was the team that stepped up and added Jeurys Familia from the New York Mets. When Shawn Kelley had a bit of a meltdown and was designated for assignment by the Washington Nationals it was the A’s that picked him up in a deal. Then yesterday they went out and struck a deal with the Minnesota Twins for Fernando Rodney.

Familia and Rodney where both shutdown closers at points in their careers, but both have experience as set up men while Kelley has always had a big time arm. You add these three veterans to a bullpen that features closer Blake Treinen who has a sub 1 ERA (0.93)and 29 saves plus set up man Lou Trivino who’s 8-1 with an ERA of 1.29 in 46 games with 4 saves and you’ve got a dangerous bullpen come October.

If the A’s find a way to win the wild card game and their starting pitching can keep them in playoff games early; how big of a threat are they in the American League?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to whenever you want at TuneIn.com.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 8, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Before you know it the NFL regular season is going to be starting and there are two top defensive lineman that have still not reported to their teams training camps. Both players are looking for new contracts and there has been some talk that one could actually be traded. Let’s see what we can figure out.

Aaron Donald of the Los Angeles Rams is scheduled to make a little over $2.5 million dollars in the final year of his rookie contract. That’s quite a deal the Rams are getting for a player who has been recognized as the best defensive tackle in the NFL.

Donald played in and started 14 games last season. He recorded 11 sacks an forced 5 fumbles last season. Over his four seasons Donald has made 148 tackles to go with 56 assists; he also has 39 sacks and has forced 9 fumbles recovering 2 of them.

Believe it or not Donald is actually the 14th highest paid player on the Rams and is even scheduled to make less than punter Johnny Hekker going into this season.

Donald has an estimated market value of $18.9 million dollars, but would the Rams be willing to meet that number in a contract?

It will be interesting to see if and when Donald reports to camp. It seems right now the Rams hold all of the cards. Even if Donald holds out into the season if the Rams decide they want to keep him they have the option of putting the franchise tag on him next off season.

Do you see the Rams and Donald agreeing on a contract?

The other hold out is Oakland Raiders defensive end Khalil Mack who is also in the final year of his rookie contract and is scheduled to make just under $4.7 million dollars this season.

It’s become an interesting situation because obviously Mack wants more money, but his production has been down the last couple of seasons. Mack posted a career high 15 sacks in 2015. That total dropped to 11 in 2016 and 10 1/2 last season. Now those 10 1/2 sacks did lead the Raiders last season, but it’s not quite the numbers an elite defensive end puts up.

As of late there have been some that the Raiders are “open for business” when it comes to Mack. That more or less means that they would be willing to listen to trade offers for the defensive end. Even though these reports have said that the Raiders are willing to listen they also say that there is a very slim chance that a trade would actual happen.

It looks as though in the end the Raiders and Mack will agree on a new deal. Mack has come out and said that he wants a contract comparable to Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller. In 2016 Miller signed a 6-year $114.5 million dollar contract with Denver. If the Raiders see Mack as a talent like Miller then it should be a simple negotiation, but do the Raiders see him as that type of a player?

What do you have the Raiders doing with Mack? Will he get a new deal or will they actually trade him?

It hasn’t been made official yet, but there is suppose to be an announcement by the NBA later today, but it looks as though we’re going to get to see the Los Angeles Lakers visit the Golden State Warriors on Christmas Day.

The Warriors/Lakers game will be headlining a Christmas Day line up that has four there games on the schedule.

Besides LeBron James visiting the defending champions will get to see the Philadelphia 76ers taking on the Boston Celtics. We also get the Milwaukee Bucks against the New York Knicks, the Utah Jazz against the Portland Trailblazers and the Houston Rockets against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Yes it is just August, but this set of games especially the Warriors/Lakers game is going to be talked about like it’s happening tomorrow and in some cases it already is being talked about like that.

Which on of these games are you most looking forward to on Christmas Day?

While we’re on the NBA it appears as though Carmelo Anthony and the Houston Rockets have verbally agreed to a contract.

The 34 year old Anthony played with the Oklahoma City Thunder last season in what turned out to be the worst season of his career. Anthony averaged a career low 16.2 points per game He shot 43.7% on 2-pointers and 35.7% on 3-pointer for a combined shooting percentage of 40.4% last season. Anthony also grabbed 5.8 rebounder per game and handed out 1.3 assists per game.

In July Oklahoma City traded Anthony to the Atlanta Hawks who subsequently released him. Not surprisingly Anthony cleared waiver and became eligible to sign with any team.

Anthony has stated that he doesn’t want to come off of the bench, but that might be where he finds himself with the Rockets. It appears as though Anthony will be asked to pick up some of the offense that Trevor Ariza did last season. Ariza signed as a free agent with the Phoenix Suns this off season.

While Ariza did leave Houston in free agency the Rockets where able to re-sign point guard Chris Paul and center Clint Capela. The Rockets also add 2014 Rookie of the Year Michael Carter-Williams to add depth at guard.

Does pairing Anthony with James Harden and Chris Paul give the Rockets the trio they need to challenge Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference?

The Washington Nationals are still trying to get themselves into the race in the National League East. Washington has gotten over the .500 mark at 58-55 which outs them 6 games behind the East leading Philadelphia Phillies and 4 1/2 games out of a wild card spot.

Now the Nationals shipped off a couple of relievers for some interesting reason this past week. Brandon Kinztler was traded to the Chicago Cubs after there was a report that he was a clubhouse snitch; which apparently was untrue and then they dealt Shawn Kelley to the Oakland A’s after Washington had designated him for assignment after he acted childish when he was called upon to pitch in a blow out.

So being a couple of arms down the Nationals added some what they hope will be help to the bullpen by signing Greg Holland. Now Holland has had his struggles this season and ended up being released 7 days ago by the St. Louis Cardinals.

Can the Nationals get Holland right? He was 0-2 with an ERA of 7.92 with St. Louis. Holland made his first appearance yesterday for Washington. He pitched 1 inning; striking out 3 and walking 1 in Washington’s 8-3 win over Atlanta. Maybe getting off to a good start with the Nationals is what Holland needs.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

 

How was your week

Posted: August 4, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

As the baseball season heads into the home stretch there’s been a lot of talk about which teams have the best chance to win the World Series, but there hasn’t been a lot of talk about who might win what award. Earlier in the week I did see a pole on who might win the MVP award in each league, but there was nothing about the other three big awards; so I thought we could take a look at those.

The National League Cy Young has quite a few contenders for it right now, but I’m going to try and cut it down to the Top 5.

Jacob deGrom of the New York Mets is going to get some well deserved votes, but I don’t think he’ll get enough to win the award. In 22 starts deGrom is just 5-7, but has an ERA of 1.85 over 146 1/3rd innings. He has 173 strikeouts and a WHIP of 0.97.

Aaron Nola has had a breakout year for the Philadelphia Phillies. Nola is 12-3 in 22 starts with an ERA of 2.35 over 142 innings. Nola has recorded 142 strikeouts and has a WHIP of 0.97. I don’t think Nola will win the Cy Young, but I’ll be interested to see where he finishes in the voting.

After spending the past three seasons pitching in Japan Miles Mikolas was signed by the St. Louis Cardinals and so far the move has paid off. Mikolas is 11-3 in 22 starts with an ERA of 2.75 over 137 1/3rd innings. Mikolas isn’t overpowering like some pitches on this list as he has just 97 strikeouts and a WHIP of 1.08. So far it’s been an impressive return for Mikolas, but I don’t think he’s winning the Cy Young.

Zack Greinke is having a good season for the Arizona Diamondbacks as he is 12-6 in 23 starts with an ERA of 2.96 over 142 2/3rd innings. Greinke has struck out 148 hitters and has a WHIP of 1.04. Greinke is having a good season, but I think he’s going to come up a little short in the Cy Young voting.

Right now my Cy Young award winner is Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals. Scherzer is 15-5 in 23 starts with an ERA of 2.33 over 154 2/3rd innings. Scherzer has 210 strikeouts and a WHIP of 0.91. This would be Scherzer’s 3rd NL Cy Young in a row and his 4th overall.

Just outside the Top 5 pitchers like Jon Lester, Sean Newcomb and maybe even Zach Godley have a chance to move up in the voting over the final two months of the season.

Over in the American League there are quite a few Cy Young contenders; so cutting it down to just a Top 5 was more difficult than I thought, but here’s what I came up with.

Last week I would’ve given this award to Chris Sale of the Boston Red Sox, but with his recent trip to the disabled list I think he’s going to fall just short again. Sale is 11-4 with an 2.04 ERA in 22 starts covering 141 innings. He has struck out 207 hitters and has a WHIP of 0.87.

Blake Snell of the Tampa Bay Rays is 12-5 with an ERA of 2.27 in 20 starts covering 119 innings. Snell has a WHIP of 1.07 and has struck out 134 batters. Snell returns from the disabled list tomorrow from Tampa Bay. It’s been a good year for Snell and while he’ll get some Cy Young votes his numbers don’t match up with the other contenders.

Justin Verlander has had a resurgence since being traded to the Houston Astros. He is 11-6 in 24 starts over 156 1/3rd innings with an ERA of 2.19. Verlander has a very good chance to pick up his 2nd career Cy Young award. Verlander has 204 strikeouts and a WHIP of 0.88, but I think the problem is going to be that there are three Astros starters that are having good seasons and it looks as though they may cancel each other out.

Corey Kluber of the Cleveland Indians won his 2nd career Cy Young award last season and he’s in the running for the award again this season. Kluber is 13-6 in 22 starts with an ERA of 2.79 over 145 innings. Kluber has 139 strikeouts and a WHIP of 0.94. Kluber is in a situation like Verlander. The Indians have another starter who has put up good numbers and that might hurt Kluber in the voting.

I think that Luis Severino of the New York Yankees is going to be the last guy standing in the end and will take home his 1st career Cy young award. Severino is 14-5 with an ERA of 3.08 in 23 starts covering 143 1/3rd innings. He has struck out 159 hitters and has a WHIP of 1.11. The voting should be close, but I think that Severino will sneak away with the award.

There are other pitcher who will get some votes and could improve their position over the final two moths of the season. Astros Gerrit Cole and Charlie Morton are going to compete with Verlander for Cy Young votes just like Trevor Bauer of the Indians will compete with Kluber for votes. Rick Porcello of the Red Sox picked up a Cy Young award in 2016 while picking up 22 wins. He looks like he’s going to be a 20 game winner again; so he’ll get some votes as well.

Now there is almost two full months of baseball left to play; so there will be pitchers that step up and show they’re a contender for the Cy Young and then their will ne pitchers that fade down the stretch.

As of right now both races are very tight, but I’m going with Scherzer in the NL and Severino in the AL. Who do you have? Leave your pick in the comments.

I mentioned at the start of this blog that there was a poll for MVP done earlier in the week. Freddie Freeman of the Atlanta Braves won a very close vote over Nolan Arenado of the Colorado Rockies. Both guys are having good seasons and their team are in playoff contention; so I can understand that voting. What really confused me was the American League voting. Out of 30 voters Mike Trout got 25 of the 1st place votes.

I’m guessing these voters just picked Trout out of muscle memory. Trout is having a good season and deserves to get some MVP consideration. Trout’s team the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have fallen out of playoff contention which seems to affect every other player when it comes to MVP votes, but Trout has been immune to it. I’m under the impression that these voters just forgot to look at the season Mookie Betts is having for the team with the best record in base the Red Sox.

I’m very confused by this; so I’m hoping someone can help me out with this. Please leave me a comment and let me know if I’m off on the Mike Trout MVP debate.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is available for you to listen to when ever you want at TuneIn.com.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 1, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Yesterday was the end of baseballs non-waiver trade deadline and there where quite a few deals that got done. Now teams can still make trades, but a player has to be put on waiver for any trades to happen.

Baseball has one of the simpler systems to understand. When a player is out on waivers there are a few things that can happen. He can get through waivers unclaimed and then can be dealt to any team. If a player is claimed his team can pull him off of waivers and keep him or they can try to work out a deal with the team that claimed him. There is one more option, but it doesn’t happen to often. If a player is claimed on waivers the team that placed him on waivers can simply let him go to the team that claimed him. The team claiming him would get him with no players exchanging teams, but would be responsible for all the money left on that players contract. The waiver claim order goes from the team with the worst record at the time the players was placed on waivers to the team with the best record being given the last chance to claim any player.

Oddly with all of the deals that ended up being made yesterday I feel that there was more talk about a player that wasn’t traded; that of course being Bryce Harper.

Washington Nationals General Manager came out early in the day on Tuesday and said flat out that Harper wouldn’t be traded, but that didn’t stop everyone from talking about him being traded. I guess they thought that Rizzo was bluffing and he had a Harper deal in the works. In the end Harper stayed with the Nationals and I guess I was the only one surprised that happened.

I understand that the Nationals have had a disappointing season and I believe they’re the most disappointing team in baseball. Even with as bad as Washington has been they’re still a .500 team at 53-53 and are just 5 1/2 games behind the Philadelphia Phillies for 1st place in the National East.

Now I know there are going to be a lot of people out there who will talk about the fact that the Nationals have to pass two teams to get into 1st place and in a lot of cases that can be too big of a mountain for a team to climb, but because of scheduling I don’t think that’s the case this time. The Nationals have 17 more games against the Phillies and the Atlanta Braves who are currently in 2nd place in the National League East. Washington will play Philadelphia 9 times and Atlanta 8. There’s no easier way to make up ground in your division then by beating the teams in front of you.

Of course for the Nationals to make this move they’re going to have to get some things back on track starting with Harper being better than the .223 hitter he’s been so far. They’re also going to need some offensive help from Ryan Zimmerman and it would be an extra plus if they could get any kind of offense at all out of their catching position.

On the plus side Daniel Murphy seems to be finding his swing as he’s hit .474 over his last six games. If Murphy starts to hit that could help Harper see better pitches and just with Murphy’s improvement Harper is hitting .350 over his last six games. The Nationals will also need rookie Juan Soto to continue to play like the way he’s played and Anthony Redon will also need to produce.

Max Scherzer is fine at the top of the Nationals rotation, but after that there are questions starting with Steven Strasburg. Strasburg is currently on the disabled list with a pinched nerve in his neck. He’s expected back in the middle of the month; so he’ll need to contribute to the pitching staff.

Now after the big two it looks as though the Nationals will be going with Gio Gonzalez, Tanner Roark and Jeremy Hellickson to round out their rotation.

Gonzalez is 6-7, but has an ERA of 3.78 in 21 starts. If he can get some run support his record could be better. Roark has been terrible this season. He’s appeared in 22 games making 22 starts. He has a record of 5-12 with a 4.37 ERA. He’ll need to pitch much more like the guy who has a career ERA of 3.55 to help the Nationals get back in the playoff race. Now Hellickson has been a nice surprise for Washington. He was a late signee and has only made 15 starts, but he’s 4-2 with an ERA of 3.59. If Hellickson can just continue to pitch like he’s been he’ll be a big help down the stretch.

Washington did make a trade deadline deal yesterday as the sent reliever Brandon Kintzler to the Chicago Cubs for minor leaguer Jhon Romero.

The Nationals have some questions in the bullpen and it starts with when will closer Sean Doolittle return? Doolittle is on the disabled list with left toe inflammation and while on the disabled list suffered a stress fracture in that foot. It appears he is still weeks away from returning.

With Doolittle out who will the Nationals turn to in closing situations? Ryan Madson has converted 4 of his 6 save chances, but has an ERA of 4.54. Kintzler had 2 saves in 5 chances. Kelvin Herrera is 1 for 1 in save chances since being acquired and you’d think he’d be the guy the Nationals would turn to since he had 14 saves with the Kansas City Royals before being traded to Washington.

Beside who will close games the Nationals are going to have to find pitchers in their bullpen that can get the game to the closer.

Someone in the bullpen is going to have to step up and fill the main set up role. Matt Grace has been good from the left side with a 2.77 ERA and Justin Miller is 6-1 this season. Shawn Kelly has an ERA of 3.34; so this combination will have to continue to hold leads for whoever ends up closing games for the Nationals.

Have you given up on the Nationals? Or do you think they still have a chance?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live in BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that you can listen to the podcast ay time you want at TuneIn.com.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Burketime

 

How was your week

Posted: July 28, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The MLB trade deadline is just three days away. After that I’m sure you’ll see a lot of articles about which teams where winners and which teams where losers. I thought we’d get a jump on that, but with a twist. Instead of looking at the trades that where made and how they will affect the pennant race let’s take a look at them and see how they’ll affect your fantasy team.

Let’s start with the biggest name that’s been traded so far Manny Machado who went from the Baltimore Orioles to the Los Angeles Dodgers. This is an easy one. Machado was having an MVP caliber season with the worse team record wise in baseball and there’s no reason to think that won’t continue. Machado may even have a chance to pick up some more RBI’s and score more runs for his fantasy owners being in a better hitting line up. The return of a healthy Justin Turner would give Machado even more of a chance to produce, but even without Turner it’s still a fantasy Win.

Let’s go with Machado’s teammate Zach Britton next who was traded from the Orioles to the New York Yankees. If you drafted and held on to Britton you where expecting him to return and pick up some saves for you, but he’s not going to get too many of those opportunities now. In my category leagues Holds is one of the categories; so Britton will be able to contribute in those leagues, but I most other leagues it’s going to be difficult to get a contribution from Britton for the remainder of the season. This one has to go down as a fantasy Loss.

Let’s stick with the Yankees as they also acquired left handed pitcher J.A. Happ from the Toronto Blue Jays. Happ picked up 10 wins with a Toronto team that was under .500. You have to think that a move to a contender should be good for him, but you never know. Happ has been om a bit of a downward cycle as he hasn’t pitched more than 5 innings in his last three starts and over his last seven starts his ERA is 5.20. Now he’s moving to a hitter friendly ballpark, but he’ll also have a better hitting team behind him even without Aaron Judge for a few weeks. I think this will be a Win for you fantasy team.

The Boston Red Sox also picked up a starter as they traded with the Tampa Bay Rays for right hander Nathan Eovaldi. The first thing that comes to mind is will Eovaldi stay healthy. Even think season Eovaldi didn’t make his first start until May 30th. He appears healthy and four of his last five starts have been very good. Moving to the best team in baseball should also be a big plus. All things point to this being a fantasy Win. 

The Milwaukee Brewers have made a couple of moves the first one being a deal with the Chicago White Sox for reliever Joakim Soria. With the White Sox Soria was the guy at the end of the bullpen getting the opportunity to get a save. He’s not going to be getting those chances with the Brewers. Soria has performed well in the set up role before which is what he’s expected to do for Milwaukee, but if you took a chance and drafted him I fantasy you took him as a closer. With that being said this ends up as a fantasy Loss.

The other deal the Brewers made was last night as they acquired Kansas City Royals 3rd baseman Mike Moustakas. This trade adds another power bat as Moustakas has hit 20 ho runs this season and is coming off a 2017 season where he posted a career high 38 home runs. With Eric Thames being out injured Moustakas should side nicely into that role of left handed power hitter for the Brewers. Being added to a better line up should also help Moustakas as he shouldn’t be pitched around now. This looks like a fantasy Win. 

The defending World Series champion Houston Astros have also made a couple of moves. The first one was acquiring catcher Martin Maldonado from the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Maldonado has always been looked at as a good defensive catcher and a quality handler of a pitching staff, but he did post a career high 14 home runs last season. The question here is going to be playing time as I how much will he get. Max Stassi has dome a nice job filling in for the injured Brian McCann; so you have to figure right off the bat Maldonado is going to be sharing time. When the veteran McCann returns he’ll need the at bats to get ready for the playoffs. With all of this working against Maldonado this one is a fantasy Loss.

The Astros also added some bullpen help last night as they picked up Ryan Pressly from the Minnesota Twins. It was thought that the Astros might be looking for a closer, but Pressly is a set up guy who’s appeared in 51 games this season and has posted 8 holds. Pressly’s ERA is a little higher than most would like for a reliever, but I think this is another situation of a player going to a better team. This is a tough call, but I think this one will go down as a fantasy Win.

The Chicago Cubs added to their starting rotation picking up former World Series MVP Cole Hamels from the Texas Rangers. Hamels has had some struggles this season. I his last start Hamels gave up 7 runs in 5 innings and over his last seven starts has an ERA of 6.69. A lot of Hamels trouble has been associated with pitching in Texas where during the summer months the baseball really jumps at the Ballpark at Arlington. Is a change of scenery what Hamels needs? This season and last season Hamels ERA has been over 4.00, but he has had success in the National League before. I think the move to the Cubs will be a positive for Hamels and while he may not match the stats he had the last tie he was in the National League I think his numbers will improve. This should be a fantasy Win.

It had been reported that the Philadelphia Phillies where interested in adding a middle infielder and that’s what they did when they traded with the New York Mets for Asdrubal Cabrera. Cabrera is a career .270 hitter, but is ahead of that number this season and has hit better than that the last two seasons. Cabrera also appears to be on his way to posting a career high in home runs; he has 18 home runs right now and his career high is 23. Cabrera has played 2nd, short and 3rd in his career, but this season he has exclusively played 2nd base. I’m not sure where the Phillies are panning on playing Cabrera, but he fits what was perceived as their need. As long as Cabrera continues to get regular at bats with the Phillies there’s no reason he shouldn’t continue to put up the numbers he’s been doing all season; so this should be a fantasy Win.

Another team that went out and traded for a position of need was the Arizona Diamondbacks as they acquired shortstop Eduardo Escobar from the Minnesota Twins. Escobar was the Twins best player this season posting a .274 batting average with 15 home runs and 63 RBI’s. What’s paid off for fantasy owners with Escobar this season is he has a MLB leading 37 doubles this season. This looks like a good move for a Arizona team that is 1 1/2 games out of 1st place in the National League West and are currently holding the second National League wild card spot. Escobar is moving into what is a better hitters parks; so this should be a fantasy Win.

I saved this trade for last because I’m guessing it doesn’t affect too many leagues, but it will have an affect in the two 20 team leagues I’m in.

The Colorado Rockies added to their bullpen acquiring Seunghwan Oh from the Toronto Blue Jays. It appeared as though Oh was going to get some save opportunities in Toronto and earlier on he did, but converted just 2 of 5 save chances. Oh had his trouble in the closing role for the Blue Jays and was shifted into more of a set up role where he did well. Oh’s ERA is 2.68 in 48 games. The Rockies have a very crowded bullpen and I’m not sure how many chances Oh will get plus his home game are now in Coors Field. I think the combination of this many this one a fantasy Loss.

I think we got all of the major trades that should affect your fantasy leagues as of right now. Let me know n the comments if I missed one or what you think of these deals.

Don’t forget to listen to Sports Time Radio live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss it live you can go over to TuneIn.com and listen to the podcast any time you’d like to.

Remember to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

 

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: July 25, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The Baltimore Orioles rebuild started by sending Manny Machado to the Los Angels Dodgers and it continued last night with the trade of Zach Britton.

Britton was dealt to the New York Yankees for three prospects all pitchers. Dillion Tate is a right handed pitcher who was 5-2 with a 3.38 ERA in 15 starts at Double-A. Right hander Cody Carroll and lefthander Josh Rogers where both pitching in Triple-A. Carroll has pitched in 32 games and is 3-0 with an ERA of 2.38 with 9 saves. Rogers was 6-8 with an ERA of 3.95 in 19 starts.

The Orioles kept all three in the minors at the levels they where at. Tate went to Double-A Bowie while Carroll and Rogers where assigned to Triple-A Norfolk.

Britton’s season didn’t start until June 12th as he had Achilles tendon surgery in the off season. He’s appeared in 11 games for the Orioles going 1-0 with an ERA of 3.45 with 4 saves.

Britton isn’t quite back to that dominant closer form he showed before getting injury, but he hasn’t given up a run in his last 8 appearances and truth be told the Yankees don’t need him to be that guy. Britton has been used in back to back games, but hasn’t pitched more than an 1 1/3rd in a game this season.

Britton strengthens what looked to be an already strong Yankees bullpen. Aroldis Chapman has an ERA of 2.03 while Dellin Betances (2.55) and Chad Green (2.63) have ERA’s under 3 while David Robertson has a respectable 3.05 ERA. Jonathan Holder and A.J. Cole have also contributed to the Yankees bullpen success. Adam Warren recently returned from injury while Chasen Shreve has had some struggles this season.

The addition of Britton will allow the Yankees to match up late in games against left handed hitters without having to stretch Chapman out. Britton also has the closing resume to give Chapman a day off if needed.

Britton is in the final year of his contract and since he was dealt mid-season the Yankees will not be able to give him a qualifying offer. That means if Britton signs with someone other than the Yankees next season New York won’t receive any compensation for him. The Yankees are also picking up the remainder of Britton’s 2018 salary which is right around 4.38 million dollars.

There where a lot of teams interested in acquiring Britton and the Yankees getting him is as much a game of keep away as it is improving their own bullpen. It was reported that the Houston Astros and the Chicago Cubs where two contenders interested in Britton. Now they’ll have to look elsewhere and the Yankees won’t have to face Britton if they where to meet up with the Astros in the post season.

With Britton, Brad Hand and Jeurys Familia all being traded it’s going to be difficult for a team to find a closer type of pitcher. Even though everyone seemed to think that the Oakland A’s should be sellers and deal their closer Blake Treinen they decided to go a different route and traded for Familia. With the Pittsburgh Pirates on an 11 game winning streak which has got them back into striking distance of a wild card spot they’ll more than likely hang into their closer Felipe Vazquez. So who’s that leave out there?

Fernando Rodney has converted 21 of his 26 saves chances for the Minnesota Twins. Rodney is 41 years old and in his 16th season, but can still get the job done. The Twins are 46-53 and it doesn’t look like they’ll be catching the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central; so they might look to trade Rodney. Rodney would be owed the remainder of his $4.25 million dollar salary for this season and he has an option for next season at the same salary, but he could be bought out for $250,000.

The Texas Rangers aren’t going to be contenders this season and there has been a lot of talk about them trading Cole Hamels, but would they deal their closer? Keone Kela is just 25 and has converted 23 of his 24 save chances this season. The price tag might be a little high for Kela as he doesn’t reach arbitration until this coming off season and can’t be a free agent until the 2022 season. There are some reports that the Pirates have contacted the Rangers about Kela’s availability.

At 43-60 the Detroit Tigers have played better in the first year of their rebuild than I think even they expected, but with the rebuild going on I’m sure they’d be open to dealing their closer Shane Greene. Greene has converted 20 of his 23 saves chances this season, but does have an ERA of 3.86. Greene is 29 years old and goes into arbitration next season and can become a free agent in 2021.

The Chicago White Sox are in the exact same position that the Tigers are. Jokim Soria is closing for the White Sox this season and has converted 16 of his 19 save opportunities. Soria is 34 nd in his 11th season. He’s actually spent more time pitching as a set up man than he has a closer; so it shouldn’t be difficult for him to work back into that role. Soria is making $9 million dollars this season and has an option for next season at $10 million dollars, but the contract has a $1 million dollar buy out.

I think the hot name on the relief front will be Raisel Iglesias of the Cincinnati Reds. Iglesias has converted 19 of his 22 save chances this season, but has an ERA of just 2.20. Iglesias is 28 years old and any team acquiring him would have him under control for four years if they wanted to. Iglesias is eligible for arbitration in 2021 and would be allowed to become a free agent in 2022. Interestingly there are teams out there that have mentioned that they’d be interested in seeing if Iglesias could become a starter, but that would be next season after a full spring training of being stretched out as a starter. the Reds seem to have been rebuilding for quite a few years without much success. Would they move Iglesias for a package of prospects and try to speed up that rebuild?

There’s a pretty good list of closers that could be traded before the July 31st deadline. Did you see someone that your favorite team should be looking at? Or is there someone that isn’t listed that should be? Let me know in the comments.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

Look me up on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: July 21, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, golf, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

I understand in today’s online world that it’s very important for you to be the first one to report on a story no matter if it’s good, bad or indifferent. This has led to some very poor reporting from some very good journalists. Last night I came across an odd situation like this.

After the Mets/Yankees game wrapped up last night there was a lot of talk about the fact that the Mets didn’t use Jeurys Familia in a save situation last night. That led to a lot of speculation that he either had been traded or was about to be traded.

I decided to check Twitter because a lot of trades come out there before any place else. As I was scrolling through my Twitter feed there was a post from a prominent baseball reporter who I believe works for ESPN. I’m honestly not sure if he’s still employed there. I watch games on ESPN, but I don’t know if they still have a baseball show; so I haven’t seen this guy on their network lately. Anyway in his tweet he reported that Familia was on his way to the Oakland A’s then he added as soon as the teams can work out the deal. After reading the tweet; I sat there and thought isn’t that how trades are made? So I couldn’t figure out from his report if the two teams had made a deal or not, but more importantly than giving us any information he was the first one to get it out on Twitter. Luckily a little further up on my Twitter feed there was a report from a baseball writer who reports on the MLB Network and he reported that the two teams where talking, but no deal was in place. He also mentioned that there where other teams still interested in Familia.

I’m actually kind of rooting for this trade to happen just so I can hear the response from all of the guys on the MLB Network who have saying for weeks before the All-Star break that the A’s should be sellers at the trade deadline. I found it hilarious that a team that is currently just 4 games out of a wild card spot should be a seller, but all these guys seem to care about is acquiring prospects.

If the A’s are the team that ends up making a deal for Familia he’ll slide into a set up role in front of Oakland’s closer Blake Treinen. Familia was a set up guy for the Mets as a rookie; so he has some experience in that role. Familia is only signed through the end of the season; so he’ll be a free agent this off season.

Familia has appeared in 40 games for the Mets this season covering 40 2/3rd innings. He was 4-4 with 17 saves and an ERA of 2.88. He’s struck out 43 batters and walked just 14, but 1 was intentional while allowing 1 home run.

Familia would give the A’s another power arm in their bullpen in front of the already hard throwing Treinen. Lou Trivino has been a break out pitcher out of their bullpen this season. Trivino has appeared in 36 games covering 44 1/3rd innings. He is 7-1 with an ERA of 1.22 while piking up 4 saves and posting a team high 12 holds. Treinen by the way has converted 24 of his 27 saves chances while posting an ERA of 0.94.

While there seems to be quite a few bullpen arms on the trade market Familia would be one of if not the top reliever on the trading block. Not only would he be a big add to the Oakland bullpen, but if they get him the other contenders looking for relief help will have to go shopping somewhere else.

The Chicago Cubs are one of those contending teams and right out of the All-Star break they added a veteran arm to their bullpen.

The Cubs sent minor league left hander Tyler Thomas to the Texas Rangers for veteran right hander Jess Chavez.

Chavez is a well traveled veteran as the Cubs will be the 9th team he’s played for in his 11 year career. Chavez has been durable throughout his career as he has been used as both a starter and a reliever. It does appear that the Cubs are planning to use him out of the bullpen, but in case of emergency he could make a spot start.

Chavez appeared in 30 game for the Rangers this season; all in  relief. He was 3-1 with an ERA of 3.51 while recording 1 save and 3 holds.

While it’s not the major move I’m sure that some fans would like to see the Cubs make. It is a move that they needed to make. The Cubs bullpen has battled injuries all season with the latest being closer Brandon Morrow going back on the disabled list. It wouldn’t be a big surprise to see the Cubs add another veteran reliever before the trade deadline.

We don’t spend much if any time talking about golf on Sports Time Radio, but they are playing one of their major tournaments this week. This year it’s being played at Carnoustie Golf Links in Angus Scotland.

The 3rd round of the tournament has already teed off, but the leaders won’t be headed out for their round for a few hours.

After two rounds Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner are tied at the top of the leaderboard at -6 under par. Pat Perez, Xander Schauffele and Tommy Fleetwood are all jut one stroke behind at -5 under par. There are also five golfers tied at -4 under par.

Schauffele is scheduled to tee off at 10:40 a.m. and he’s playing with Rory McIlroy who is one of those golfer tied at -4 under par. Perez and Fleetwood are scheduled to tee off at 10:50 a.m. while the leaders Johnson and Kisner have an 11:00 a.m. tee time.

Since I’m sure everyone is wondering Tiger Woods is at Even par through two rounds which puts him in a tie for 33rd right now. Woods is scheduled to tee off at 8:15 a.m. and he’s playing with Shaun Norris who is also at Even par heading into round three.

FYI all the tee times where in Eastern Standard Time.

Don’t forget that you can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

Feel free to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: July 18, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

It’s All-Star break time in Major League Baseball. I’m not a fan of any of the All-Star games, but the baseball All-Star game is as close to the actual sport than any of the other All-Star games out there. I didn’t watch any of the game tonight nor did I watch the Home Run Derby yesterday. I guess it’s kind of my mid-season baseball break to prepare for the trade deadline and playoff races. While we’re on trades.

While the All-Star game was on I caught some breaking news on one of the many sports channel I have and they where reporting that Manny Machado will be traded very soon. Apparently the Baltimore Orioles have agreed to trade Machado to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

When the news of the trade first broke the team that was going to be acquiring Machado was unknown, but as the night went it became clear that the Dodgers where that team.

Now there are a few things that the teams have to work out before this trade will be official. It appear right now that the Orioles will receive just one player Yusniel Diaz from the Dodgers. Diaz is a 21 year old outfielder who is the Dodgers #4 ranked prospect. What the teams are trying to work out now is if the Orioles will send any money along with Machado to the Dodgers. If money is added to the deal Baltimore could receive another player. Adding money to the deal would also help the Dodgers with some of their luxury cap concerns.

Will have to wait until the deal is officially agreed on before will know everything, but I’m surprised that the Orioles where only able to get one prospect as of now for Machado.

The Dodgers are currently in 1st place in the NL West by 1/2 game over the Arizona Diamondbacks.

By adding Machado the Dodgers will be able to get their line up back to where to was at the start of the season. Los Angeles lost their starting shortstop Corey Seager after 26 games this season. Seager sprained the UCL in his right elbow and has under gone Tommy John surgery. He should be ready to return in spring training next season. Chris Taylor has been filling in at shortstop, but was originally going to be the everyday centerfielder; Kiki Hernandez has been helping fill in at centerfield with Taylor at shortstop. With the addition of Machado it will allow Taylor to return to centerfield and Hernandez can return to be a utility guy.

Taylor is hitting .253 with 11 home runs, but has struck out 109 times this season. Hernandez is hitting .230 with 16 home runs. Machado would bring a .315 batting average with 24 home runs. It would be a big upgrade for the offense at that position, but Machado is also playing solid defense at shortstop with a fielding percentage of .980.

Even if the Dodgers do end up being the team that adds Machado there are no guarantees that he’ll put them over the top. Los Angeles is still dealing with a lot of injuries. Justin Turner missed the final four game before the All-Star break with left abductor tightness. Turner is expected to return when the season restarts on Friday. Yasiel Puig ended up on the disabled list right before the All-Star break with Grade 1 right oblique strain and is expected to still be out a couple of weeks. The Dodgers also have five relievers and one starter on the disabled list and don’t forget that both Rich Hill and Clayton Kershaw have missed starts this season with injuries.

While adding a player the quality of Machado will be a big, big plus for the Dodgers it might be even ore important if they can get healthy and stay healthy.

How do you feel about Machado to the Dodgers. Does it make the favorite in the NL West or the National League? How much does it improve their odds to win the World Series?

The Portland Trail Blazers won the Las Vegas Summer League championship on Tuesday by beat the Los Angeles Lakers 91-73.

The Trail Blazers jumped out to a 31-19 lead after the 1st quarter and where able to cruise home from there. K.J. McDaniels was named MVP of the championship game. McDaniels was the games high scorer with 17 point and also grabbed 7 rebounds. McDaniels came off of the Portland bench to go 8 of 14 in his 20 minutes of action. Caleb Swanigan grabbed a game high 9 rebounds while Wade Baldwin IV handed out a game high 6 assists for the Trail Blazers.

Josh Hart was the Lakers high scorer with 12 points. Hart ended up getting ejected in the 4th quarter after picking up two technicals for complaining. Jonathan Williams grabbed a team high 6 rebounds while Alex Caruso handed out a team high 4 assists. While the Lakers didn’t win the championship Hart was named Summer League MVP.

While the Lakers where playing for the Summer League championship second year guard Lonzo Ball was having surgery on his left knee.

After a month of rest and looking into other treatment option for his injured knee which included platelet rich plasma injections Ball ended up having arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus ligament.

Ball ended up missing the final eight games of the regular season with what was described as a knee contusion. Ball then took another month off after the season ended to allow the injury to strengthen and heal. While Ball spent time lifting weights and getting stronger he didn’t spend much time on the basketball court because of the knee injury. After the surgery Ball is expected to be ready for training camp without any complications.

Once Ball is healthy he’ll have to battle it out with veteran Rajon Rondo for the starting pint guard spot. Rondo was signed as a free agent this off season. Even though Ball was the #2 pick in last years draft the Lakers have said that the four spots around LeBron James would be open for competition in training camp.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime.