How was Your Week

Posted: August 27, 2016 by Sports Time Radio in NASCAR, sports
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Is Baltimore Orioles closer Zach Britton a serious candidate for the AL Cy Young? The last relief pitcher to win the AL Cy Young was Dennis Eckersely back in 1992. If you’re not taking Britton as a serious contender than who are you looking at for the award. Detroit Tigers rookie Michael Fulmer and Kansas City Royals lefty Danny Duffy have probably been the two best starting pitchers in the AL, but are they Cy Young worthy? Fulmer is 10-4 with a 2.58 ERA in 20 starts as of right now. He will probably win the AL Rookie of the Year award, but could he claim the Cy Young as well. Duffy has made 19 starts, but has appeared in 35 games since he started the year pitching out of the Kansas City bullpen. Duffy is 11-1 with a 2.66 ERA going into today’s schedule start against the Boston Red Sox. J.A. Happ of the Toronto Blue Jays is 17-4 in 25 starts with an ERA of 3.19 while Rock Porcello of the Red Sox is 17-3 in 26 starts with an ERA of 3.23 and will receive consideration for the award. The fact that Porcello is having a good year and wears a Red Sox uniform may actually make him the front runner for the award. All 4 of these pitchers have had good seasons to this points and there starts down the stretch will impact where they finish in the Cy Young voting, but I don;t think any of them has had a better year than Britton. Britton has appeared in 55 games for Baltimore. He is 2-1 with an 0.69 ERA and is 38 for 38 in save opportunities this season. Britton has pitched 52 innings, allowed 27 hits and allowed 7 runs to score, but just 4 of then where earned. He’s struck out 61 batters while walking 16 and has allowed just 1 home run. Opponents are hitting .150 against him and his WHIP is 0.83. Baltimore has 34 games left and since they’re in the pennant race there’s a chance Britton gets close to 80 appearances. I’m sure Fulmer, Duffy, Happ and Porcello’s teams all have close to the sane number of games so they should each get 4 or 5 starts depending on where they are in their rotations; so they’ll have some chances to show they deserve the award. The Orioles are currently 70-58 in the AL East. They are 2 games behind Happ and the Blue Jays for the division lead and 1 game behind Porcello and the Red Sox for 2nd place. Baltimore is holding onto the 2nd AL wild card spot right now as they have a 1 game lead over Fulmer’s Tigers. Duffy’s Royals are 67-61 and are currently 3 games out of the wild card spot. So as you can see each guy is pitching for a playoff contender. That means the choice should come down to who the best pitcher is.

I can understand if you don’t recognize the name Kerry Hyder. It took me a little while t figure who he was and who he played for. Hyder is a defensive lineman for the Detroit Lions. In the Lions August 18th game against the Cincinnati Bengals Hyder put a hit on Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton that the NFL decided was roughing the passer. Hyder was fined $18,231 for this hit. This happens pretty much every week in the NFL, but this one is interesting because Hyder has yet to earn an “accredited” season in the NFL he is only making $1000 a week during pre-season. So basically the NFL just fined Hyder about three times what he’ll make. Now Hyder can appeal this fine and the players Collective Bargining Agreement has provisions for this situation. “On appeal, a player may assert, among other defenses, that any fine should be reduced because it is excessive when compared to the player’s expected earnings for the season in question,” the CBA also states; “However, a fine may be reduced on this basis only if it exceeds 25 percent of one week of a player’s salary for a first offense, and 50 percent of one week of a player’s salary for a second offense. The rule also says: “A player may also argue on appeal that the circumstances do not warrant his receiving a fine above the amount stated in the schedule of fines.” You’ll have to think that Hyder will go the appeal route and use these CBA provisions to get his fine reduced.

Hyder was on the New York Jets practice squad in the 2014 season and was with the Lions on their practice squad during 2015 before being signed for the final game of the 2016 season with Detroit. Hyder is 25 years old and played in his college ball at Texas Tech is trying to make the Lions and add some depth at their defensive tackle position.

There are just 3 races left until The Chase; so any driver looking for a win to get in is running out of time. This week the NASCAR Sprint Cup series is at the Michigan International Speedway for the Pure Michigan 400. Joey Logano won the pole with a speed of 201.698 m.p.h. Jimmie Johnson will start 2nd with Denny Hamlin 3rd, last weeks winner Kevin Harvick will start 4th and Chase Elliott rounds out the Top 5 starting the race in the 5th spot. Elliott is the only driver in the Top 5 without a win this season, but he is currently in The Chase on points. Elliott along with Austin Dillion, Ryan Newman and Jamie McMurray are the 4 drivers that would qualify for The Chase without a win right now. If any driver not currently in the Top 16 finds his or her way into victory lane they would bump one of these drivers out of The Chase. Newman is the driver in 16th place right now and he has a 35 point lead on 17th place Trevor Bayne and a 39 point lead on 18th place Kyle Larson. With just 3 races to go that’s a pretty sizeable points margin to make up unless Newman has difficulties in all 3 races. Chris Buescher picked up a win in the rain shortened Pocano race and has moved into the Top 30 in points; so he’s in The Chase. Will we see a driver outside the Top 16 get a win and move into The Chase or will someone already in start to look like a serious cup contender and grab another victory. On a side note Alex Bowman who is driving the #88 car this week for Dale Earnhardt Jr. had a good qualifying run and will start 6th tomorrow.

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I’m not sure how you feel about it, but I think that the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants just opened a big 3-game series yesterday in Los Angeles. The Dodgers came into Tuesday nights game with a 1 game lead in the NL West. It appeared that the Giants had the advantage in the starting pitching match up last night as San Francisco had their ace Madison Bumgarner on the mound. The Dodgers countered with NL Rookie of the Year candidate Kenta Maeda. Looking at the starting pitching match up you might think that it would be a low scoring pitchers duel to start the series. That’s not what these two teams gave everyone last night. Bumgarner gave up a run in each of the first 3 innings and only lasted 5 innings. In total Bumgarner gave up 5 runs; all earned on 9 hits. He struck out 7 while walking 1 and giving up 1 home run. Bumgarner took the loss. Maeda picked up the win, but only lasted 5 innings himself. Maeda gave up 3 runs; all earned on 6 hits while walking 4 and striking out 4. San Francisco’s bullpen had it’s issues over the final four innings as they gave up 4 runs. Corey Gearin pitched just 1/3rd of an inning, but gave up 3 hits and 2 runs; both earned while striking out 1 batter. Will Smith came in and settled things down for the Giants pitching 1 1/3rd scoreless innings striking out 2 batters. George Kontos came in to pitch a 1/3rd of an inning and while he didn’t give up a hit he did walk a batter and allowed a run to score. Javier Lopez came in to pitch the final inning and gave up 2 hits with one of them being a solo home run. Lopez did strikeout 2 and walked 1 in that inning while giving up the 1 earned run. Jesse Chavez was the first call out of the Dodgers bullpen and he had some issues. Chavez lasted just 1/3rd of an inning giving up 2 hits and 1 run. Adam Liberatore (2/3rd) and Joe Blanton (1 2/3rd)didn’t give up any hits and Blanton struck out 2 over their 2 1/3rd innings of relief to get the ball to Kenley Jansen. Jansen did pick up a four out save his 36th of the season, but not without a little trouble. He gave up 1 run on a solo home run before closing the game out. Jansen also recorded a strikeout over his 1 1/3rd innings of work.

The Dodgers took the early lead putting up a run an inning in the first three innings off Bumgarner. The Giants did get 2 back in the top of the 3rd and where able to tie it up with a run in the top of the 5th. The tie didn’t last long as the Dodgers added 2 runs in the bottom of the 5th inning. San Francisco got 1 run back in the top of the 6th, but Los Angeles turned right around and added 2 more runs in the bottom of the 6th. The Dodgers topped off their scoring by adding 2 runs in the bottom of the 8th and while the Giants did add a run in the top of the 9th all it did was change the number of runs the Dodgers would win by. In this case it was a 9-5 victory for Los Angeles. The win improves the Dodgers record to 70-55 and gives them a 2 game division lead over the Giants who fall to 68-57 with the loss.

Corey Seager and Justin Turner both went 3 for 4 for the Dodgers. Seager scored 3 runs while Turner drove in a run. Adrian Gonzalez went 2 for 4 while driving in 3 runs while Andrew Toles pinch hit and then stayed in the game going 2 for 2 with a home run 3 RBI’s and 2 runs scored. Enrique Hernandez also went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a stolen base.

Denard Span and Angel Pagan each had 2 hits for the Giants. Span was 2 for 4 with a home run an RBI and 2 runs scored while Pagan was 2 for 5 with an RBI and a run scored. Brandon Belt and Buster Posey both went 1 for 4 and each drove in a run. Joe Panik and Eduardo Nunez where both 1 for 3 and Nunez added a stolen base. Ehire Adrianza picked up a pinch hit and an RBI as well.

Johnny Cueto takes the mound for the Giants tonight. Cueto is 14-4 with an ERA of 2.90 on the season. He is also 2-0 with an ERA of 3.63 against the Dodgers this season. The Dodgers are going wit Rich Hill who was 9-3 with a 2.25 ERA for the Oakland A’s before being traded to the Dodgers. Hill spent the past month on the disabled list with blisters on his middle pitching finger; so this will be his 1st start for the Dodgers. Hill hasn’t faced the Giants since August 22nd of 2007 when he was a member of the Chicago Cubs. Hill didn’t factor in the decision, but he did pitch 7 innings giving up 2 runs on 6 hist while striking out 10. There’s really not much you could learn from that outing, but I knew that Schaumburg Stu would enjoy seeing that.

There are still 37 games left in the season for the Giants; so you can’t really say that these games are must wins, but I’m sure they would like to win 2 of 3 games in this series. Again they seem to have the advantage on the mound, but can they turn that into a win tonight?

While I am still in baseball mode I am slowly trying to start getting things ready for my upcoming fantasy football drafts. I’m noticing more and more that in one order or another Antonio Brown of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Odell Beckham Jr. of the New York Giants and Julio Jones of the Atlanta Falcons are ranked 1, 2 and 3. I’m trying to figure out if I end up with a top 3 pick in my drafts if I would be comfortable taking one of these wide receivers with that pick. Would it be a safer pick to take what would be your top running back on the board or grab one of these receivers. Workhorse running backs are few and far between in today’s NFL and while there is a gap between these three receiver and the next one you could get would it make more sense to grab that running back. As it gets closer and closer these are the things that will have to be figured out. Of course I know exactly what will happen. I’ll decide what more I want to make and then I won;t end up with a pick anywhere near the top 3, but that’s just how things go for me.

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It appears to start off great with a leadoff home run to Dexter Fowler.  But just as quickly as the inning is over, like Tyler Anderson, Kyle Hendricks gives up a leadoff home run in the bottom half of the first to David Dahl.  In the top of the third, Kyle grabs a one out single and with two outs, Kris Bryant also singles.  Anthony Rizzo also singles to score Kyle to put the Cubs up by one.  The Cubs score again in the fifth as Bryant singles in Baez who walked, advanced on a sac bunt and stole third.  Addison Russell drives Rizzo on his 15th home run of the year.  Cubs are now up 5-1.  

Travis Wood joins the Cubs in the seventh, he gives up a two out double to Daniel Descalo who scores on a fielding error by Bryant on Nick Hundley’s ground ball.  In the eighth, after giving up a walk and a single, wood is out and Carl Edwards, Jr enters the game and gives up a ground ball to DJ LeMahieu that goes down the line that is ruled as a ground rule double due to fan interference.  Carlos Gonzalez ground out but another run scores.  Nolan Arenado flys out to left and DJ would attempt to score but is gunned down by Matt Szczur.  The Rockies challenge and it’s overturned for a tie game.  

We go to 11 innings and Aroldis Chapman enters the game getting the first out.  He then gives up a single to Nick Hundley who ends the game scoring on Ryan Raburn’s walk off double.  Not a great start for this trip out west but it’s only one game.   

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

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In 2013 Carlos Gomez was with the Milwaukee Brewers. He hit .284 with 24 home runs, 73 RBI’s, 10 triples and 40 stolen bases. He made his first All-Star team won his first Gold Glove and finished 9th in MVP voting. Gomez hit .284 again in 2014 he had 23 home runs and again had 73 RBI’s to go along with 34 stolen bases. He made the All-Star team again and finished 16th in MVP voting. In 2013 the Brewers finished 4th in the NL Central. In 2014 they looked to be a playoff team and led the division for quite a while before faltering and ending up in 3rd place with a record of 82-80. As the 2015 rolled around the Brewers appeared to be a struggling team and there was talk of tearing the team down and rebuilding. Gomez was seen as a great trade piece and the Brewers used him as that. Gomez was sent to the Houston Astros along with pitcher Mike Fiers and cash in exchange for at the time four minor league players; Josh Hader, Brett Phillips, Adrian Houser and Domingo Santana. The Astros where in the pennant race and Gomez looked to be the missing piece in their outfield. Gomez played 41 games for the Astros in the 2014 season. He hit .242 with 4 home runs and 13 RBI’s, but did add 10 steals. Gomez hit a solo home run in the Astros wild card victory over the New York Yankees. Gomez did homer in the ALDS against the Kansas City Royals, but that was one of just three hits Gomez had in the 5 games he played in. Houston lost that series to the eventually World Series champion Royals. Houston looked like they’re rebuild was going well and coming into the 2016 series they where ready to contend and they had a two-time All-Star centerfielder in Gomez for the entire season. Gomez battled some injuries and you have to wonder if his personality just didn’t fit with the Astros. In 85 games with the Astros Gomez was hitting .210 with 5 home runs and 29 RBI’s before being released on August 18th. Since no other team claimed Gomez and the Astros couldn’t find a deal for him after they designated him for assignment he now becomes a free agent and Houston will be on the hook for the rest of his $9 million dollar salary. Is there a playoff contender out there that might take a shot at bringing Gomez in and if they did could he help them?

Let’s see if we can find a new team for Gomez. How about the Miami Marlins. Giancarlo Stanton is out for the season with a Grade 3 hamstring strain. While Gomez could never replace the production Stanton provides he still is a solid defender and can still steal a base. The Marlins are going with Christian Yelich, Marcell Ozuna and Ichiro Suzuki as their everyday outfield. I love Ichiro, but he is 42 years old and you have to wonder if he can be a productive everyday player. Gomez and Ichiro could make a nice platoon type of situation and then the Marlins would also have a bench piece to turn to late in games.

How about the Detroit Tigers. The Tigers look to be fading in the AL Central race and they need t do something to get their team going. Cameron Maybin is on the DL and they’ve lost infielders Nick Castellanos and Jose Iglesias. Gomez would be an upgrade over the platoon their now using of Tyler Collins and Alex Presley. The Tigers are scrambling to stay in the AL Central race and the $100,000 it would cost them to bring Gomez in could be money well spent if he performs like he did back in Milwaukee.

How about the Texas Rangers. Shim-Soo Choo is lost for the season and the Rangers will have to turn to Delino DeShields, Ryan Rua and Drew Stubbs to fill the void. The Rangers have a solid lead in the AL West, but the addition of a player like Gomez could help come playoff time. Going to a team like the Rangers could give Gomez the time he needs to get back on track without the pressure of a pennant race.

How about the New York Mets. The Mets have one of the worst offenses in baseball. Remember last season they went out and picked up Yoenis Cespedes and that helped them make a playoff run that ended in a World Series lost, but they did get there. Don’t forget the Mets lost Juan Lagares for the season and with Cespedes returning from the DL soon the addition of Gomez could spark the team again.

How about the St. Louis Cardinals. Now this normally isn’t a move the Cardinals would make, but they did just lose outfielder Matt Holiday for at least the remainder of the regular season. Randall Grichuk has been back and forth to Triple-A a few times this season, but has been hot as of late. Gomez is more of a natural centerfielder than Grichuk. Then if Holiday does return for the playoffs Gomez could work into the outfield rotation or be a bat off the bench.

There are 5 possible landing spots for Carlos Gomez, but there could actual be more. Don’t be surprised if teams like the Washington Nationals, Toronto Blue Jays or even the San Francisco Giants kick the tires on Gomez. Whoever Gomez ends up with it will be interesting to see which player they get. Will they get the guy who use to get MVP votes or are they getting the .210 hitter the Astros released.

UFC 202 is tonight at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main event on the card is the re-match of Nate Diaz vs. Connor McGregor. Diaz took the first fight between these two on short notice and pulled off the upset by getting McGregor to tap out to a choke hold. McGregor was on top of the world at the time of that loss and will be looking for revenge. Oddly Diaz was so disgruntled with the sport and his contract in 2014; he actually requested a release from the UFC. Now I’m not a huge UFC fan; so I have no idea who’s going to win this fight. What I do wonder is if McGregor picks up the win do we get a third fight between these two? Now if Diaz gets the win tonight you have t start wondering what this will do to McGregor’s standing in the UFC. I’ve seen both guys picked to win this fight and since I’m clueless on this I would just hope for a good fight.

There are four featured undercard bouts on UFC 202. Anthony Johnson vs. Glover Teixeira in a light-weight bout. There are two welterweight fights on the undercard. Donald Cerrone vs. Rick Story and Neil Magny vs. Lorenz Larkin. The fourth fight features bantamweights Cody Garbrandt vs. Takeya Mizugaki.

Are you buying the pay per view?

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In the series finale with the Brew Crew, Jake Arrieta takes to the mound searching for his 15th win of the season.  He is 1 – 0 against the Brewers seeing them last in April.  He takes on Zach Davies who faced the Cubs last on July 23 and took the W.

Today would see another great start at the plate for the Cubs but not so great for Davies as he only goes four innings.  In the first inning, he gives up a single to Kris Bryant, then a double to Anthony Rizzo.  Bryant scores on Ben Zobrist’s ground out to first.  Rizzo scores on Addison Russell’s single to center.  The third inning would start with Matt Szczur leading off with a single and then being brought home Byrant’s 29th home run of the season.  With two outs and two men on, Wilson Contreras doubles to right bringing in Zo for the fifth run of the day.  In the fourth, Szczur leads off with a double and scores on Bryants double.  Bryant then scores on Rizzo’s double.  The Cubs have earned 7 runs after four innings.

Jake would get through the first three innings with only one walk.  In the top of the fourth he would give up two, two out walks then gives up a three run homer to Kirk Nieuwenhuis, his 11th of the year.  He gets out of the fourth but  after four innings the Cubs are up 7 – 3.  Jake gives up two more walks in the fifth inning but retires the next three batters to get out of the inning.  He does however give up a leadoff home run to Hernan Perez in the top of the sixth and walks Chris Carter for the second time.  He gets the next two outs but then gives up back to back walks to Ramon Flores and Keon Broxton.  With the bases loaded, Maddon decides to bring in Spencer Patton who gives up an RBI base on balls to Jonathan Villar but gets out of the inning.

The bottom of the sixth, Craig Counsel decides to bring in Blaine Boyer who gets out of the inning but not before giving up a solo homerun to Kris Bryant for his second of the day and his 30th on the year.  The Cubs are now up, 8 – 5.  Spencer Patton remains in the game for the seventh and makes it a five pitch inning as does Carlos Torres in the bottom half of the inning.

Patton remains in for the top of the eighth and gives up a leadoff double to Kirk Nieuwenhuis who scores on Ramon Flores’s one out ground out.  Patton walks pinch hitter Manny Pina and that would be enough as Justin Grimm enters the game.  He gives up a single to Villar but gets Scooter Gennett to ground out to Rizzo to end the inning and we go to the bottom half of the eighth.  Corey Knebel joins the game and his first batter is Javier Baez who grabs a single to leadoff.  With one out, Matt Szczur walks to bring up Kris Bryant who has two homeruns today.  He sends a line drive to left field driving in Baez and going 5 for 5 today picking up his 78th RBI.  Rizzo and Zobrist fly out to end the inning.

We go to the top of the ninth with Aroldis Chapman taking to the mound for another save opportunity.  He strikes out Ryan Braun for the first out.  Hernan Perez next up and he singles.  Chapman gets Chris Carter to strike out for out number two.  Nieuwenhuis grounds out to end the game giving Chapman his 27th save of the year and the Cubs get their 13th sweep of the season!

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

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Brew Crew vs Cubs

Posted: August 17, 2016 by Daniel Kupres in sports

Jon Lester is looking for lucky number 13 this season and his first win against the Milwaukee Brewers.  His last start against them in Milwaukee was his second worse start of the season on July 24 only going four innings giving up four runs on four hits and five walks.  Jimmie Nelson is also looking for his first win against the Cubs in his fourth start.  He is 0-2 but has only given up five runs on 11 hits in those three games and he has struck out 14.  It should be a pitchers duel tonight through at least the first four innings but all bets will be off after the fifth.

I was completely wrong about tonight’s pitcher’s duel.  It would appear that way as Jon Lester only gives up two hits and a walk through five innings.  Jimmie only makes it to the end of the fifth inning and would not have as much luck in this game as he was in the previous match ups.  I didn’t think he would make it out of the first inning.  He leads off the game by walking to Dexter Fowler then hits Kris Bryant.  Ben Zobrist sends a sharp ground ball to right driving in Fowler for the first run.  Then Addison Russell sends a soft grounder to second that scores Bryant.  With only one out, Jorge Soler launches a deep fly ball to left center for his ninth home run on the year making it a 5-0 game.  Heyward doubles but Ross strikes out.  Lester walks but batting for the second time in the inning, Fowler strikes out to end the inning.

The Cubs would grab a couple base runners in the second but no one crosses the plate.  The bottom of the third would see David Ross launching his eighth home run of the season for the sixth run of the game.  As I said, Nelson makes it through the fifth and Tyler Cravy takes the sixth, walks Ross and gives up a single to Fowler but the Cubs do add another run.

The sixth inning  would see Keon Broxton leading off with a single then stealing both second and third bases, then scores on Orlando Arcia’s ground out.  In the seventh, Lester takes to the mound and gets the first two outs but gives up a walk to Jake Elmore and Maddon would decide to bring in Carl Edwards, Jr who ends the inning.  He gives up a single in the top of the eighth but retires the next three batters to end the inning.

Damien Magnifico tries to keep the Cubs at bay and gives up a lead off single to Soler.  He gets Heyward to flyout, then gives up a walk to Ross.  Travis Wood takes the ninth inning prevent the Brew crew from scoring and he makes it a 1-2-3 inning.

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

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Back at the baseball trade deadline the Chicago White Sox some how managed to ignore the advice of the baseball pundits and experts that said they just had to trade Chris Sale. Sale is 27 years old and is signed through 2017 with team options for 2018 and 2019.  Now if the White Sox could have recieved five or six major league ready or close to ready young players then maybe they would’ve dealt Sale. I fully supported the White Sox hanging on to Sale and there’s no way I’m moving a pitcher of this quality. What I am wondering though; is Chris Sale out of gas? Sale was 14-3 going into the All-Star break. He’s made 5 starts since the All-Star break and he is 0-3 and the White Sox have won just 1 of his 5 starts. Sale has pitched 35 2/3rd innings since the All-Star break. He’s giving up 12 earned run for a post All-Star break ERA of 3.03. Sale game log  Of course maybe Sale’s not the problem and it’s the White Sox offense that’s just not doing the job. If you consider this a struggle for Sale; do you think the White Sox will trade him in the off season? Looking at the stats it seems as though it’s a White Sox offensive thing more than it is a Sale pitching thing. It would be difficult to see the White Sox deal a perennial Cy Young award contender, but I guess stranger things have happen. Ask our friend Schaumburg Stu about the Chicago Cubs trading Lou Brock to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Are we watching the San Francisco Giants fade out of the playoffs? The Giants lost their 3rd straight last night; 4-3 to the Pittsburgh Pirates. That loss with the Los Angeles Dodgers 15-5 win over the Philadelphia Phillies gives the Dodgers the lead in the NL West by a 1/2 game. The Giants are 9-20 since July 15th and haven’t been able to win more than 2 games in a row during that stretch. Even with the struggles the Giants have had and even with the Dodgers moving into 1st place San Francisco is still the top wild card team. The Giants hold a 3 game lead on the St. Louis Cardinals who hold the second wild card spot. The Pittsburgh Pirates and the Miami Marlins are 4 games behind San Francisco. With the troubles the Giants have had is it possible we see them slide all the way out of the wild card game. I’m sure you’ve heard the it’s an even year theory and maybe that’s what you’re holding onto if you’re rooting for San Francisco, but you have to wonder why this team has been tanking and not in the NBA way. You would’ve thought the return of Hunter Pence would be enough to get the Giants back on track. Pence was looking like an MVP candidate before he got injured. Pence has played in 16 games since returning from injury. He’s hitting just .203 with 1 home run and 4 RBI’s. As Pence gets more and more at bats and should return to form; will that be enough to get the San Francisco ship righted?

Everyone including myself thought the pick up of Eduardo Nunez was a great get for the Giants. In 17 games for San Francisco Nunez is hitting .214 with 1 home run and 3 RBI’s; on the plus side he does have 2 triples. Is it possible that coming from the last place Minnesota Twins and joining a 1st place team has mounted pressure on Nunez and he’s struggling to deal with it. Nunez isn’t the only Giants trade acquisition that hasn’t really worked out. Matt Moore is 0-2 in 3 starts with an ERA of 4.50 over 18 innings. Left handed set up guy Will Smith was brought in to help settled down a bullpen that’s been missing the retired Jeremy Affeldt. Smith has appeared in 7 games covering 3 2/3rd innings. Smith is 0-1 with an ERA of 12.27 and has blown a save chance. These looked like three very good moves by the Giants and as of right now they just haven;t worked out. Now there’s no reason at all that Nunez, Smith and Moore can’t return to the form they had when they where traded for. If they could rectify their issues since coming to San Francisco there’s no reason the Giants can’t get into the playoffs as either a wild card team or even the NL West winner. Of course once your in the playoffs anything can happen.

Now the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series had last weekend off, but the X-Finity Series ran the Mid-Ohio Challenge at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Saturday. Now we Don’t talk about the X-Finity Series at all, but I wanted to bring this race up because if you didn’t see it they kept the race going even after it started to rain. The race started out under sunny conditions, but that only lasted two laps as the rain started and the drivers ended up coming to pit road to put there rain radial tires. Now the rain made for a different style of racing that we’re not use to seeing in the Sprint Cup Series. It made for an entertaining race as the cars where sliding into and around every corner and sometimes even in the straight-aways. When it was all said and done Justin Marks got his 1st career X-Finity victory. Sam Hornish Jr. finished 2nd about 4 seconds behind Marks. Ryan Blaney was 3rd, Ty Dillon was 4th and Justin Allgaier round out the Top 5 in 5th place.

The Sprint Cup drivers return to the track for the Bass Pro Shop NRA Night Race at the Bristol Motor Speedway. The Bristol Motor Speedway is a concrete shirt track as it’s just a little over a half mile. It’s 0.53 miles around to be exact. Carl Edwards won the April race at Bristol. Will Edwards get another Bristol win? Will we see someone who already has a win get to victory lane? Or will we manage to get a driver looking for his first win this season and a way into The Chase. Including Saturday nights race there are only 4 races left before The Chase starts. So drivers looking for a win to get into The Chase are quickly running out of time.

The Big Jack

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Game 1.

The first game of a day night double header and Trevor Cahill gets his first start of the year against the Milwaukee Brewers.  Former Cub, Matt Garza gets the nod for the Brew Crew in his first start of the season against his former team.

Cahill goes five solid innings only allowing four base runners on two hits and two walks.  He strikes out three batters and gives up no runs.  Matt Garza would counters with five full innings also.  Garza strikes out two batters and walks three batters.  He gives up five hits and that starts in the first inning with a leadoff single to Dexter Fowler.  Kris Bryant reaches but forces Fowler out.  Anthony Rizzo sends him to third on his single.  Garza then loads the bases with his first walk of the game to Ben Zobrist.  Addison Russell drives in the first run of the game with a sac fly to left.

Garza scores his second walk in the bottom of the third to Fowler.  With one out, Rizzo grabs another single and each runner advances on Zo’s force out.  With Russell at the plate, Garza throws a wild pitch and Fowler scores the second run of the game.

In the bottom of the fourth, Chris Coghlan leads off with a double and advances to third on Miguel Montero’s single.  Coghlan is able to reach home and scores the third run of the game as Cahill helps himself out with a sac bunt.  Dexter walks again but Garza gets out of the inning.  Garza has a 1-2-3 ground out fifth and that would be all for him.  The Cubs score the fourth run of the game in the eighth after Damien Magnifico walks Zo then hits Russell and let’s both runners advance on a wild pitch and Zo scores on Coghlan’s sac fly.

To finish off  the Brew Crew, Mike Montgomery grabs his fourth hold of the year in two innings gives up a hit, a walk and strikes out three.  Hector Rondon takes one inning and only walks one and also gets a hold.  Joe Smith gets one out in the ninth and walks two but is pulled for Aroldis Chapman who strikes out one and ends the game for his 25th save of the year.

Game 2.

Jason Hammel gets the nod for game 2 as he takes on Chase Anderson.  Hammel must have been eating his Sea Salt Chips as he goes seven innings only giving up two hits, three walks and strikes out seven.  He has definitely broke his old ways of declining after the All Star break.

Chase Anderson for the Brew Crew leaves the game after two batters with an injury.  Jhan Marinez takes over him going 2 & 2/3 innings.  He walks three and and gives up four hits but the Cubs only score one run in the third on Kris Bryant’s single to left that brings in David Ross.

Rob Scahill enters the game in the sixth for the Brewers and gives up a leadoff double to Zo who scores on Wilson Contreras line to right.  Javier Baez steps in the box and launches his 13th home run of the year putting the Cubs up again by four.

Justin Grimm takes on the eighth and giving up only one hit and strikes out one.  Top of the ninth and the Cubs are up by four and Joel Maddon decides to go with Travis Wood.  He gets the first out on a bouncer to third.  Chapman is up in the pen just in case as Wood gets the second out of the inning.  The Cubs have a chance to pull off the first double header shut out sweep as Len and JD brought up but almost as quickly as they said it, Wood gives up a solo home run to left to Hernan Perez.  Chris Carter gets a bloop single to to center just out of range for Zo.

That would be it for Wood as Maddon decides to bring in Chapman for the final out but allows Carter to advance on a high fast ball off the back stop.  Jake Elmore takes eight pitches and walks.  Keon Broxton steps in the box and sends a slow bouncer just out of reach of Chapman halting Bryant from picking it up.  Bases Loaded for Maldonado and he gets called out on strikes as Chapman saves both games today not with out making it an exciting ending.  Jason Hammel gets his career high 13th win of the season.

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

The Podcast now on Tunein.com, Download the app today and follow us or Apple users can download us in the Podcast app today!

The Cubs wrap up their four game series Sunday night prime time on National TV.  John Lackey takes to the mound looking for his 10th win of the season.  John is 1-1 in three starts against the Cardinals and Mike Leake looking to get to .500 with his ninth win of the season.  His last start against the Cubs was April 18th against Lackey which was a loss.

Lackey makes it a quick top half of the first with a 1-2-3 inning.  Leake is not so lucky as he starts off by walking Dexter Fowler then gives up a single to Kris Bryant.  Anthony Rizzo sends a ground ball to right scoring Fowler for the first run of the game pushing Bryant to third.  Ben Zobrist sends a fly ball to left scoring Bryant for a sac fly.  In the first, the Cubs are up by two.

Lackey gives up a single and a walk in the 2cd but gives up no runs and strikes out two.  In the top of the third he gives up a one out single to Greg Garcia, then hits Stephen Piscotty.  Matt Carpenter sends a ground ball to short, Addison Russell throws to second getting the force out but Zo’s throw to first is wild and Garcia scores.

After the first, the Cubs bats wouldn’t be able to get to Leake until the bottom of the sixth inning with Bryant sending a one out fly ball to center for a his first triple of the year.  Rizzo then drives him in for the Cubs third round of the game.  After six the Cubbies are up 3 – 1 .

In the top of the 7th, Lackey gives up a leadoff single to Yadier Molina but gets the next two outs but that would be enough for Maddon as he brings in Justin Grimm to strike out Randal Grichuk to end the inning.  Leake starts off the bottom half by giving up a double to Chris Coghlan and makes it to third on Jason Heyward’s infield single.  Cardinals skipper, Mike Mathena decides to pull Leake for Matt Bowman who loads the bases by walking Wilson Contrearas but gets the next three batters out to end the inning.

Hector Rondon enters the game in the top of the eighth and gives up back to back singles to Kolten Wong and Garcia.  Both runners ate driven in by Stephen Piscotty when he takes Rondon deep to the center field bleachers.  He does get the next out but then gives up a solo homer to Brandon Moss.  Joel Maddon decides to bring in Travis Wood who gets the second out of the inning but walks Jhonny Peralta and gives up a single to Jedd Gyorko.  Grichuk comes in and doubles driving in Peralta putting the Cards up 6-3.  Kolten Wong back up again for the second time this inning flys out to end the inning.

Kevin Siegrist enters the game in the bottom of the eighth for the Cards to face Rizzo who takes the first pitch then drives the next fast ball off the right field score board.  Zo strikes out but Siegrist would have some unannounced injury and be replace by Seung Hwan Oh.  Oh comes in and strikes out Russell in three strikes.  Baez grabs himself a single.  Jason Heyward flys out to end the inning.

Top of the ninth.  Aroldis Chapman enters the game and strikes out the first two batters and gets Matt Carpenter to ground out.  Cardinals closer as of late, Oh stays in for the ninth.  He only sees Contrearas, Soler and Fowler and strikes out all three batters to end the game to help split the series between the Cubs and Cardinals.

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

The Podcast now on Tunein.com, Download the app today and follow us or Apple users can download us in the Podcast app today!

Kyle Hendricks as who some would refer to as the best pitcher for the Cubs right now takes the mound looking for his 12th win of the season and to continue the Cubs wining streak.  He would be taking on rookie Luke Weaver in what starts as a pitcher’s duel.

Kyle would hit Stephen Piscotty in the first but strikes out the other three batters he faces to end the inning.  Luke starts his career out by striking out Fowler and Bryant and gets Rizzo to groundout to end the inning.  Kyle then gives up a leadoff hit to Yadier Molina but strikes out the remainder of the batters he faces.  Ben Zobrist leads off the bottom half of the second with a double and Addison Russell drives him in with a deep fly ball to left for his 14th homer of the season.  Weaver then loads the bases on two outs but gets out of the inning.

Both pitchers would get into a groove making quick of their opponents through five innings.  It would be the Cardinals who strike back in the top of the sixth with Brandon Moss’s two out home run to right center putting the Cardinals within 1 run.  Hendricks then gives up another solo home run in the top of 7th to tie the game at 2 to Jedd Gyorko.   Weaver only made it through four innings as Alex Reyes would take over for him in the bottom of the fifth.  He is able to hold the Cubs through the end of the 7th.

Carl Edwards Jr, replaces Kyle in the top of the 8th and gets the first out but almost as quickly loads the bases for Yadier Molina.  Molina strikes out but the ball would get passed the Contreras to put the Cards ahead by one.  Carl then walks Peralta to load the bases again and then Gyorko gets an RBI walk for the fourth run of the game.  With two outs Joe Smith replaces Carl to face Randal Grichuk who takes Smith deep for a grand slam but he does retire the next batter to end the inning.  Cardinals now up 8-2.  Kevin Siegrist takes over in the bottom half of the 8th retiring Fowler, Bryant and Rizzo without a hitch.

Mike Montgomery takes over in the top of the 9th gives up a two out single but gets out of the inning.  Cubs have one last chance as they take on Seth Maness who gives up back to back singles to Zo and Russell.  Zo scores on Heyward’s single who’s throwing error by Maness allows Russell to reach third as Heyward goes to second.  Zack Duke looking to redeem himself for the Cards joins the game getting the next three batters out but Russell does score but the Cubs go down 8-4.

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

The Podcast now on Tunein.com, Download the app today and follow us or Apple users can download us in the Podcast app today!