Archive for the ‘Auto Racing’ Category

How was your week

Posted: May 6, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, baseball, horse racing, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Joey Logano picked up his first win of the of the NASCAR season as he won last Sunday’s Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Speedway, but the win will not count towards the post season for Logano and his #22 team. On Thursday NASCAR issued an L1 level penalty to Team Penske’s No. 22 team for a rear suspension violation discovered during teardown. The penalty carries multiple consequences, which includes making  Logano’s win at Richmond on Sunday encumbered. What the encumbered win means is that Logano cannot use the Richmond win as consideration for an automatic playoff spot. Should Logano still make the postseason, the five playoff points that come with a victory would not apply for Richmond. The official race record will still list Logano as the winner. Additional penalties are a $50,000 fine and two-race suspension for crew chief Todd Gordon, and the loss of 25 driver points and 25 owner points. Team Penske announced it would not appeal the penalties.

There was also a penalty accessed to Richmond 3rd place finisher Denny Hamlin and his Joe Gibbs Racing #11 team, but it was nowhere near as stiff as Logano’s. During a post race check Hamlin’s car was found to have a unsecured lug nut on one of the tires. Hamlin’s crew chief Mike Wheeler was handed a $10,000 fine after one lug nut was found to be improperly secured.

Tomorrow the Monster Energy NASCAR series has the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Talladega is a restrictor plate race; so that has to bring everyone to the thought of this race being the one that the retiring Dale Earnhardt Jr. can get a win a qualify for “The Chase”. Earnhardt Jr. is still one of the best if not the best restrictor plate racer in the Monster Energy Series and he’s always a good choice to win at Talladega, but he didn’t have a great practice session yesterday; so we’ll have to see how he does in qualifying today.

While we’re on the subject of racing; the race for the triple crown starts with the running of the 143rd Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs today. The favorite to win right now is Classic Empire who has 4-1 odds and is being ridden by Julien R. Leparoux. There are also two horses who’s odds are close to Classic Empire’s at 5-1. You can get McCracken or Always Dreaming at those 5-1 odds. Irish War Cry is the only other horse with betting odds under 15-1 as he’s currently at 6-1. So betting wise it looks as though it’s a four horse race.

Now I’ll be the first to tell you I know absolutely nothing about horse racing or how to bet on it, but I’m picking Girvin to win today. Girvin is currently at 15-1 odds and is being ridden by Mike E. Smith. Girvin will start the race out of gate #7 and let’s face it; how can I not pick a horse who’s named after former NBA star George Gervin.

The Baltimore Orioles won their game Friday night 4-2 over the Chicago White Sox, but when it came time to close the game out the Orioles where without closer Zach Britton who wasn’t in their bullpen last night. Not Britton was just activated from the disabled list on Tuesday. Britton went on the disabled list on April 18th with left forearm strain and it appears as though Britton may have had a recurrence of the injury. Britton did pitch a scoreless inning Tuesday night and then again Thursday night, but was unavailable last night due to the injury flare up. Britton underwent an MRI on his pitching arm and Baltimore’s manager Buck Showalter said “There’s some talk about the next step to take with him.” Brad Brach assumed the closer role for the Orioles last night just like he did when Britton was on the disabled list. Brach entered Friday nights game with a three run lead and got the save despite allowing a run on two hits to the White Sox in the 9th inning.

With an odd set of circumstances behind it the Orioles lost their starting pitcher in last nights game after he record two outs. Wade Miley made the start for the Orioles against the White Sox last night and threw just 12 pitches as he was hit by line drives off the bats of consecutive White Sox hitters. Miley gave up three hits, but no runs in what was the shortest start of his career at 2/3rd on an inning. Miley left the game with what the Orioles are calling a left wrist contusion. White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu was the first player to hit Miley with a line drive as he hit a ball that caught Miley on his pitching hand. Baltimore’s trainer came out and examined Miley, but Miley convinced him that he was okay and was allowed to stay in the game. Then two pitches last White Sox outfielder Avisail Garcia hit a liner back up the middle that caught Miley in the back of his left leg. Miley walked off the field under his own power as Gabriel Ynoa came out of the Orioles bullpen to retire the side with no runs being allowed. It was reported that the baseball Abreu hit had an exit velocity of 103 m.p.h. while the baseball Garcia hit was clocked at 102 m.p.h.

Now I played a lot of baseball growing up and now I watch way too much baseball and I’ve never seen a pitcher get hit in consecutive at bats like that. Please leave me a comment and let me know if you every seen this happen in a baseball game.

There was another odd set of pitcher injuries last night in the Seattle Mariners/Texas Rangers game. In the 11th inning of what turned out to be a 3-1 Texas win in 13 innings the Mariners lost two pitchers to injury on consecutive batters. Jean Machi was removed from the game with two outs in the Top of the 11th after walking Carlos Gomez. Evan Marshall came out of the Seattle bullpen and was given all the time he needed to warm up since Machi left the game do to an injury. On the second pitch Marshall threw to the Rangers Joey Gallo he screamed in pain grabbed the back of his right leg and went down. Marshall ended up having to be helped off the field and was diagnosed with a hamstring injury. Mariners manager Scott Servais told reporters after the game that Machi had a nerve issue in his right thumb that made it difficult to feel the baseball.

Now there have been a ton of pitcher injuries early this season, but these are two of the oddest set of injuries I’ve ever seen.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com or find the podcast any time you want at TuneIn.com

Don’t forget you can find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: April 26, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, baseball, hockey, NASCAR, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

I was caught off guard yesterday by the news that Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be retiring at the end of this NASCAR season. Earnhardt Jr. missed the last 18 races of the 2016 season with concussion like symptoms, but was medically cleared to return to racing this season. Even though Earnhardt Jr. missed pretty much the entire second half of the 2016 season he still won Most Popular Driver as voted by the National Motorsports Press Association. It was the 14th year in a row that Earnhardt Jr. had won that award. Career wise Earnhardt Jr. won 26 races and 9 exhibition races; he is also one of only eight drivers to have won the Daytona 500 two or more times. Earnhardt Jr. won his first Daytona 500 in 2004 and then 10 years later in 2014 he won the race again. Earnhardt Jr. was actually leading this years Daytona 500 when he got caught up in a wreck. He ended up finishing 37th.

Even though he won’t be behind the wheel any more don’t expect Earnhardt Jr. to be too far away from the race track. He still co-owns JR Motorsports which is involved in the NASCAR Xfinity and truck series.

It’s been a slow start to the 2017 season for Earnhardt Jr. His best finish was a 5th place at Texas Motor Speedway on April 9th. That’s been his only Top 10 finish so far this season, but there are 28 races left this season. It would be nice to see Earnhardt Jr. get himself into The Chase and have a chance to win a championship in his final season.

Dustin Pedroia has missed the last two Boston Red Sox games after Manny Machado slide into and past 2nd base spiking Pedroia in the calf area. There was some swelling in the area that caused Pedrioa to sit out the final two games of that series against the Baltimore Orioles. There where reports that Machado reached out to Pedroia via text message and apologized for the incident and it appeared that the two players had worked things out between themselves.

On Saturday there was no attempt made by the Red Sox to retaliate on behalf of Pedroia and it looked like everything was put in the past. Then in the final game of the series on Sunday Machado came up to bat with Matt Barnes pitching for the Red Sox. The first pitch Barnes threw to Machado was a 90 plus mile an hour fastball behind his head that actually hit Machado’s bat. Barnes was ejected after that pitch and Machado went on to hit a RBI double off Joe Kelly who came in to replace Barnes. After this incident Machado and Pedroia exchanged words while Machado was in the on deck circle and it seemed as though Pedroia was saying that he didn’t ask the Red Sox or in this case Barnes to do that.

Now I would’ve had absolutely no problem at all if the Red Sox would’ve hit Machado as some type of retaliation for his slide into Pedroia, but my issue with this is you don’t go head hunting when you’re doing it. There was a similar incident in the Minnesota Twins/Detroit Tigers series over the weekend and when the Tigers pitcher retaliated he threw at the rear end of the Twins batter. Now that I can deal with, but you can’t go up around or after a guys head when you’re doing this.

Now I was hoping that Major League Baseball would come down on Barnes hard and set an example of what they would do to pitchers who go head hunting, but sadly they choked in a big way. All Barnes got was a 4-game suspension for throwing at someone’s head and he’s appealing that. This is just sad and a huge joke at the hands of Major League Baseball. Barnes should’ve easily gotten double digit games for what he did and to suspend him for just 4 games is laughable. What would’ve been Barnes suspension had he actually hit Machado in the head? Machado would’ve missed multiple games with the concussion he probably would’ve gotten from the pitch had it hit him. Is that what it would’ve of taken for Barnes to get and actual punishment. Major League Baseball truly dropped the (base)ball in this time and I hope it doesn’t take someone getting hit in the head by a pitcher who’s retaliating for one of his players for them to realize that this is a serious issue and it needs a serious suspension.

The 2nd round of the NHL playoffs gets started tonight. The Western Conference series will drop the puck tonight. The teams that knocked out the #1 and #2 seeds in the Western Conference will meet in the 2nd round as the St. Louis Blues host the Nashville Predators in Game 1 of their series. Then the Anaheim Ducks will host the Edmonton Oilers in Game 1 of their 2nd round series. Both of these games can be seen on the NBS Sports Network.

On Thursday the 2nd round in the Eastern Conference gets started. The Ottawa Senators host the New York Rangers in Game 1 of their series. This game will be shown on CNBC. Then a half an hour after the first game starts the series that everyone is talking about gets started as the Washington Capitals host the Pittsburgh Penguins in game 1 of that series.

Now I don’t want to take anything away from the Rangers or the senators as they both won their 1st round series and deserve to be here, but does it seem right that the Capitals and the Penguins are meeting in the 2nd round and not the Conference Finals? Most people thought that the Capitals and the Penguins where the best two teams coming into the playoffs and now they meet in the 2nd round; that just doesn’t seem right to me. I know the NHL re-did their playoff format, but I don’t understand how the teams with the top two points on the season should meet in the 2nd round of the playoffs. I don’t know maybe it’s just me. Feel free to let me know what you think of the NHL playoff seeding for the 2nd round in the comments.

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

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: March 18, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, basketball, College Basketball, football, NASCAR, sports

I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a huge college basketball fan, but it seems like this time of year you almost have no choice. With the NCAA tournament under way it seems like there are no other sports on television to watch. It’s always more interesting when there’s a local team in the tournament and in my area we have the Northwestern Wildcats. It was the first time they’ve ever made the tournament and they won their 1st round game against Vanderbilt on Thursday. In the 2nd round they play the #1 seeded team in their region Gonzaga. It was a big plus that they made the tournament and then it’s cool that they won a game. I’m not sure how many people expected them to beat Gonzaga today, but I do know quite a few people who picked Northwestern to get a win in their bracket. I picked Gonzaga to win this game, but I don’t think it will be a blow out. Do you have a local team in the tournament that you’re rooting for?

While we’re talking about the tournament; how did your bracket end up after the 1st round? I managed to get through the 1st round losing just four teams, but none of the teams that I lost in my bracket I had going to the Sweet 16. I lost two teams in the  Midwest bracket and two teams in the East bracket. I had Creighton over Rhode Island and Nevada over Iowa St. in the Midwest and I had UNC Wilmington over Virginia and SMU over USC in the East. I thought losing just four teams in the 1st round was pretty good, but I don’t really know. How did you do in the 1st round?

Now not only did UNC Wilmington lose in the first round of the NCAA tournament, but after the game they also lost their coach. On Friday it was announced that Kevin Keatts would be moving from UNC Wilmington to take the head coaching job at North Carolina State. Keatts was 72-28 in three seasons at UNC Wilmington and the last two years they went t the NCAA tournament. The team won CAA regular season titles all three seasons under Keatts, who became the first coach in conference history to win back to back Coach of the Year accolades. The team also set a new season high in wins with 29 this season. He will replace Mark Gottfried, who was fired after six seasons in Raleigh. Gottfried took the Wolfpack to the NCAA tournament in each of his first four seasons, but the program failed to live up to expectations the past two years and finished 13th in the ACC each season.

The Milwaukee Bucks beat the Los Angeles Lakers last night 107-103, , but more interestingly there was a bit of a shoving match that ended with three players being ejected. With :36 seconds left in the 3rd quarter Malcolm Brogdon fouled Nick Young a little on the hard side. Young didn’t appreciate the foul and shoved Brogdon. Gregg Monroe quickly jumped in and shoved Young, That in turn brought D’Angelo Russell and Brandon Ingram into the fray as they engaged Monroe. The referees quickly jumped in and accessed double technical to Russell and Monroe; so they where ejected. Young had picked up a technical foul earlier in the game; so when he was given another one by the officiating crew he was ejected as well. Young and Russell addressed the media after the game, but Monroe left without speaking to reporters. The players will now have to wait and see how the NBA rules on this incident and if there will be any suspensions or fines from it.

Now the loss by the Lakers did eliminate them officially from the playoffs for the fourth year in a row. This is the longest stretch that the Lakers have went without making the playoffs. Before this stretch the longest the Lakers had been without making the playoffs was two consecutive seasons.

Latavius Murray signed with the Minnesota Vikings as a free agent this week. Murray was with the Oakland Raiders last season and his departure leaves the raiders with a need at the running back position. Adrian Peterson is still out on the free agent markets, but there are reports that the Raiders would like to acquire retired running back Marshawn Lynch from the Seattle Seahawks. Since Lynch is still under a contract with the Seahawks the Raiders would either have to workout a trade with Seattle or just hope they would release Lynch; so they could sign him. Under Lynch’s contract he has a $9 million dollar salary for the 2017 season with a salary cap hit of $9 million dollars as well. For the 2018 season Lynch’s salary is $7 million dollars, but there is also a $3 million dollar roster bonus he would be due. Now Lynch is from Oakland; so would playing for his hometown team be enough to get hi to return to the NFL. Lynch also has a “Beast Mode” apparel store in Oakland. Lynch will turn 31 in April.

Lynch spent nine seasons in the NFL. Lynch spent three plus seasons with the Buffalo Bills before being traded to the Seahawks after the fourth game of the 2010 season. Lynch has 9112 career rushing yards and has rushed for more than a 1000 yards in a season six times. Lynch led the NFL in rushing touchdowns in 2014 and 2015. If the Seahawks decide to trade Lynch to Oakland would his season off hurt him in his return? If there is a trade what would the Raiders have to give the Seahawks for Lynch?

NASCAR is entering the third week of their season as they heads to Phoenix International raceway for the Camping World 500 on Sunday. Joey Logano took the pole for Sunday’s race with a speed of 137.321 m.p.h. Ryan Blaney will start 2nd with Dale Earnhardt Jr. 3rd. Kyle Larson (4th) and Jamie McMurray (5th) will round out the Top 5. While Logano took the pole after his run in with Kyle Busch last week; Busch will start 9th on Sunday.

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

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

 

The NFL is into the playoffs and they started last Saturday with wild card weekend. So since there where games we made picks. Schaumburg Stu and I went 4-0 for the first weekend of the playoffs while Dan the Man and Mr. Fantasy went 3-1. Dan the Man thought the Oakland raiders would get a win with 3rd string quarterback Connor Cook under center while Mr. Fantasy’s loss was the Miami Dolphins.

Now we’re into the divisional round. There again are 4 games. Two on Saturday and two on Sunday. Saturday starts with the Seattle Seahawks at the Atlanta Falcons. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:35 p.m. The second game has the Houston Texans at the New England Patriots. The scheduled kickoff for this one is 7:15 p.m. On Sunday the first game is scheduled to kickoff at 12:05 p.m. as the Pittsburgh Steelers are at the Kansas City Chiefs. The second game features the Green Bay Packers at the Dallas Cowboys. The scheduled kickoff for this game is 3:40 p.m.

There where no upset in the wild card round and let’s face it the games where pretty boring. All the home teams won and the closest game was 27-14 between the won by the Houston Texans over the Oakland Raiders. Now the match ups look a little better this week; so we’ll see a higher seed lose?

It came as a little bit of a surprise yesterday when the Oakland Raiders announced that they wouldn’t be retaining offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave. The Raiders offense was ranked 6th in the league in total offense and they scored the 7th most points in the NFL. With quarterback Derek Carr becoming an M.V.P. candidate before breaking his fibula in Week 16. It was reported that Oakland’s head coach Jack Del Rio told the rest of the staff Tuesday afternoon of the move. Musgrave was the Jacksonville Jaquars offensive coordinator in 2003 and 04 when Del Rio was the head coach there. Quarterback coach Todd Downing will take over the offensive coordinator duties. There where reports that Downing had a very good chance of getting an offensive coordinator job with one of the teams hiring a new head coach and there are people wondering if this facilitated this move. Musgrave did have his critics. They pointed out how the Raiders offense seemed to be slow starting and then when they got a lead Musgrave would get too conservative.  Now the Raiders defense finished ranked 26th on the season, but reports are that defensive coordinator Ken Norton’s job is safe.

I was stunned yesterday when I saw the headline that Carl Edwards was walking away from the Joe Gibbs Racing and the #19 car. It was announced that Edwards was retiring from NASCAR immediately. Joe Gibbs Racing has called a news conference Wednesday where Edwards is apparently going to example why he’s walking away from NASCAR. Edwards is 37 years old and showed no sign of injury after an accident, yet he is stepping away from the sport. Certainly any team would want him if he ever decides to return. The timing of the decision certainly leads to speculation of a variety of reasons Edwards could want to stop racing. Maybe Edwards was just mentally spent after another near miss at the championship. Maybe the Joe Gibbs Racing driving corps isn’t as tight as it’s portrayed. Maybe he really is a Ford guy who has a plan in the back of his mind to return to that stable in the future. Maybe he has another job lined up in television? Edwards has done some commentary before and is very good in the booth calling the races. Edwards does have 28 career wins, but never did win a Cup title. He does have two 2nd place finishes on his record. 2016 Xfinity champion Daniel Suarez is expected to take over the #19 car. Suarez, who helped bring the Arris sponsorship to Joe Gibbs Racing makes the jump, but it might of happened a year or two early. Joe Gibbs Racing seemed to have quite a stable of drivers and you had to wonder down the line which driver might lose there ride. Matt Kenseth signed a contract extension last season. It’s being reported that Denny Hamlin has signed a contract extension as well. Kyle Busch is one of the top drivers in NASCAR and Eric Jones has been set up with Furniture Row Racing for the 2017 season, but is expected to return to Joe Gibbs Racing in either 2018 or 2019. Maybe Edwards felt like the odd man out and just decided to walk away. It looks like the question now is; will we ever see Carl Edwards in a full time NASCAR ride again?

We had a couple of more free agents sign in the last couple of days. Outfielder Colby Rasmus agreed to a one year $5 million dollar deal with the Tampa Bay Rays. Rasmus is coming off his worse season batting average wise. Rasmus hit .206 in 107 games with the Houston Astros. Rasmus did have 15 home runs and drove in 54 runs. Rasmus has played all three outfield positions, but it looks as though he’ll spend the majority of his time with the Rays as a corner outfielder.

The other signing has Trevor Plouffe going to the Oakland A’s on a one year $5 million dollar deal. Plouffe has spent his entire seven year career with the Minnesota Twins. Plouffe was limited to just 84 games last season do to injury. Plouffe is a career .247 with 96 career home runs. Plouffe spent time at 1st and 3rd base last season, but it appears as though the A’s will use him at 3rd and Ryon Healy will shift to 1st base and spend time at Designated Hitter.

While slowly, but surely players sign with new teams you have to wonder how much longer it will be before players like Mark Trumbo, Jose Bautista and Matt Wieters sign new deals. It seems as just about every team in baseball has “checked in” on Trumbo and you have to wonder why he isn’t signed yet. Apparently the Texas Rangers are the team with the most interest in Trumbo right now. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have shown some interest in Wieters, but there seems to be very little interest in Bautista. Is Bautista the guy in this free agent market that’s going to have to take a one year prove it type of deal and then try the free agent market again next season.

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

You can find me o Twitter @Burketime

Week 15 in the NFL just wrapped up and Dan the Man came out on top of our picks with a 13-3 record. The difference was Dan the Man was the only one who had the Carolina Panthers beating the Washington Redskins on Monday night. Schaumburg Stu and Mr. Fantasy where both 12-4 for the week while I was 11-5. Overall Schaumburg Stu looks to be on his way to winning this years contest as he is 148-76through 15 weeks. Dan the Man took 2nd place back by a game over Mr. Fantasy. Dan the Man is 141-83 and Mr. Fantasy is 140-84. That of course means I am in the cellar and it looks like I’ll be staying there. I’m 130-92 overall. There are two weeks left for our picks.

With the NHL coming up on there Christmas break it’s a bit of a surprise that the Chicago Blackhawks have the most points with 48. With the hard salary cap the NHL has the Blackhawks have had to allow top players leave through free agency and others have had to be traded away to keep the team under the salary cap. The Blackhawks are carrying six players 25 or under on their roster. The Blackhawks have six rookies that are contributing to the teams success. Ryan Hartman has 6 goals and 6 assists in 30 games. Vinnie Hinostroza has 3 goals and 5 assists in 26 games. Tyler Motte has 4 goals and 3 assists in 28 games. Gustav Forsling has 1 goal and 3 assists in 29 games and Michal Kempny has 2 assists in 23 games. The Blackhawks had to pick up a lot of these points while there captain Jonathan Toews and #1 goaltender Corey Crawford have been out injured.

While the Blackhawks are at the top right now there are some teams right behind them. The Pittsburgh Penquins and the New York Rangers have 47 points on the season. The Columbus Blue Jackets who are on a 10 game winning streak right now and the Montreal Canadiens have 46 points on the season. The Philadelphia Flyers and the Minnesota Wild each have 42 points and the Washington Capitals, Ottawa Senators, San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues all have 4 points this season. Either way it should be an interesting race for the President’s Cup.

Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers is the NHL points leader with 40. McDavid also leads all other players in assists with 28 while Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penquins leads the league in goal scoring with 22. Ryan Suter of the Minnesota Wild is the plus-minus leader at +22. In goal Devin Dubnyk leads all goalies in three of the four major categories. Dubnyk leads in Goals Against Average with a 1.55, Save Percentage at .948 and shutouts with 5. Sergei Bobrovsky of the Columbus Blue Jackets in the wins leader with 19.

As for the rookies. Patrick Laine of the Winnipeg Jets leads in points with 29 and goals with 18. Mitchell Marner of the Toronto Maple Leafs leads in assists with 15. Xavier Ouellet of the Detroit Red Wings is the plus-minus leader at +9. In the goal it’s all Matt Murray of the Pittsburgh Penquins as far as rookies go. Murray leads in Goals Against Average at 1.85, Save Percentage at .938, Shutouts with 2 and Wins with 13.

The Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Milwaukee Bucks 114-108 in overtime Tuesday night. LeBron James scored 34 points and in the process passed Moses Malone for 8th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. James now has 27,442 career points. Shaquille O’Neal is 7th on the list at 28,596. James has a good chance to get past O’Neal before the season ends.

While James moving up the scoring list on the Cavaliers win was a positive the chance that they may loss J.R. Smith with a broken thumb is the negative. Smith exited the game in the 1syt half when it appeared he injured his thumb trying to strip Giannis Antetokounmpo of the basketball as he drove to the basket. The X-rays taken at the arena were inconclusive, according to the Cavaliers. Smith will travel back to Cleveland with the team and be re-evaluated Wednesday. Smith, who signed a four-year, $57 million extension with Cleveland in the offseason after the Cavaliers championship win entered Tuesday’s game averaging 8.8 points on 33.7 percent shooting (35.8 percent from 3). Smith  previously missed six games because of knee and ankle injuries this season. The Cavaliers take on the Bucks again Wednesday night this time in Cleveland as the teams are playing a back to back; home and home series. The Cavaliers are on top of the Eastern Conference with a record of 20-6 while Milwaukee is currently .500 at 13-13.

We’re coming up on Christmas day where the NBA will run out five games for fans to watch. The first game is at 11:00 a.m. and features the Boston Celtics at the New York Knicks and is on ESPN. The second game with a scheduled 1:30 p.m. start time has the Golden State Warriors at the Cleveland Cavaliers in an NBA finals rematch is on ABC. Game three has a 4:00 p.m. scheduled start time has the Chicago Bulls at the San Antonio Spurs on ABC. The fourth game is scheduled to start at 7:00 p.m. and has the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Oklahoma City Thunder on ESPN. The fifth and final game of the night is scheduled to start at 9:30 p.m. and has the Los Angeles Clippers at the Los Angeles Lakers on ESPN. I know the Clippers and the Lakers play in the same building, but for scheduling purposes the Lakers are the home team. All the game times I listed are for the Central time zone.

The top series in NASCAR is getting a new name. Sprint will no longer be the top sponsor for NASCAR. Starting with the 2017 season will have the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Monster Energy will be the 5th different name for the top series. It was known as the NASCAR Winston Cup Grand National Division from 1971 to 1985, the NASCAR Winston Cup Series from 1986 to 2003, the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series from 2004 to 2007 and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series from 2008 to 2016. Even with the new sponsor and the modernized NASCAR logo that moves the colors solely to the left of the wording instead of having colors behind it, includes the sanctioning body’s name after the series sponsor for the first time. NASCAR kept one thing the same; the word Cup is still in the title.

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

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

 

Week 11 in the NFL ended with the Oakland Raiders getting past the Houston Texans 27-20 on Monday night.  That game also wrapped up our picks for the week; so here’s how we did. Dan the Man and Mr. Fantasy tied for the top spot with a record of 11-3. Schaumburg Stu was a game behind at 10-4 and my belief in the Green Bay Packers out me in the cellar at 9-5. On the season Schaumburg Stu is holding onto 1st place with an overall record of 102-59. Dan the Man is 2nd overall at 96-65. Mr. Fantasy is 3rd at 92-69 and I am bringing up the rear with an overall record of 87-74. Let’s see if my luck turns around in Week 12.

While we’re on Week 12 being that tomorrow there are three games on the schedule. The day kicks off with the Minnesota Vikings at the Detroit Lions. Both these teams are 6-4 and tied  for 1st place in the NFC North. Kickoff is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. c.s.t. The middle game is the Washington Redskins at the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys are 9-1 and in 1st place in the NFC East while the Redskins are 6-3-1. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. c.s.t. The third and final Thanksgiving day games is the Pittsburgh Steelers at the Indianapolis Colts. The Steelers are 5-5 and are tied with the Baltimore Ravens for 1st place in the AFC North. The Colts are also 5-5 and are one game behind the AFC South leading Houston Texans. Kickoff for this game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. c.s.t. The games are spread out over three networks. CBS has the first game, FOX has the second game and NBC will carry the night game.

There where quite a few injuries in Week 11. The first one that will come up is in Thursday nights Steelers/Colts game. Andrew Luck is in the NFL’s concussion protocol and as of now hasn’t been cleared to play yet. Luck didn’t practice yesterday and there’s no word on if he’ll practice today. Luck is in serious jeopardy of missing the game against Pittsburgh. It looks as though Jay Cutler’s season could be over. It’s being reported that Cutler has a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder. Reports are Cutler will get a second opinion and hope for a different result. The Cincinnati Bengals placed Giovani Bernard on season ending injured reserve. Bernard torn his ACL during the Bengals final drive of Sunday’s loss to the Buffalo Bills. The Bengals also lost wide receiver A.J. Green on the second play of Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury. It was originally reported that Green had a torn hamstring, but I don’t believe that’s been confirmed as MRI results haven’t been released. It’s looking like Green will miss this week’s game against the Baltimore Ravens. San Francisco 49ers safety Eric Reid torn his bicep Sunday and has been placed on injured reserve. Reid has already had surgery and has said the procedure went well. Obviously Reid is done for the season. Another injury that might impact one of tomorrow’s game. Minnesota wide receiver Stefon Diggs missed practice Tuesday with a knee injury. Diggs is the Vikings leader in receptions with 67, targets with 87 and yards with 747. The Vikings broke there four game losing streak last week and Diggs led the team with 6 receptions. It’s looking like Diggs will play tomorrow, but if you have him in fantasy watch the injury report.

I’m always a little confuse when the people who report on the NBA try to say who the best team is when we’re all of 15 or so games into the season. If you just go by record the Los Angeles Clippers are the best team at 13-2. How many people out there are confident enough to say that the Clippers will win the NBA title when the season is over. The teams I think most people expect to meet in the NBA finals are right behind the Clippers. The Golden State Warriors are 12-2 and the Cleveland Cavaliers are 10-2. The only other team in the NBA with double digit wins right now are the San Antonio Spurs who are 11-3. It won’t be long until we see how the Clippers match up with the Cavaliers and the Warriors. On December 1st the Clippers are in Cleveland to take on the Cavaliers and then on December 7th the Clippers will play host to Golden State. When it’s this early in the season these games don’t mean a ton, but it will be good to see how the Clippers due against the expected top teams in the NBA.

You’ll notice the only Easter Conference team listed above are the Cavaliers. Is there another team in the Eastern Conference that you see challenging the Cavaliers for a spot in the NBA finals. The Atlanta Hawks and Chicago Bulls have 9 wins and the Charlotte Hornets, Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics each have 8 wins. Now those five teams all seem pretty equal, but will or are at of them capable of knocking off Cleveland in a seven game playoff series. The Cavaliers first loss of the season was at home to the Hawks, but would Atlanta be able to repeat this in a playoff series. Even though we’re this early in the season it looks as the road is paved for the Cavaliers to make the NBA finals barring a huge upset.

The 2016 NASCAR season wrapped up with the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The Chase for the Sprint Cup was also down to four drivers as Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Joey Logano and Carl Edwards where the guys looking to win the title. Edwards led the most laps (47) out of the four, but during a late restart Edwards tried to block Logano from making a pass and the two touched. Edwards got the worst of the collision as he went into the wall and was knocked out of the race. Edwards finished 34th. After the wreck Logano managed to find his back to the front of the pack and was right there in the end with Busch and Johnson. In the end Johnson took the lead with three laps to go and survived a late restart to claim his 7th Sprint Cup title. Logano finished 4th and Busch came home 6th. Johnson 7th title win ties him with “The King” Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt Sr. for the most titles won by a driver in his career. Johnson last title came in 2013, but he won five seasons in a row from 2006 to 2010. Is there an 8th title in Johnson’s future? He’ll start his defense of his latest title in February at the Daytona 500.

You can listen to Sports Time Radio live on BlogTalkRadio.com and you can find the podcast any time you want at TuneIn.com

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

With Week 4 of the NFL in the books here’s the update on our pick contest. Schaumburg Stu, Dan the Man and I all ended Week 4 with an 8-7 record while Mr. Fantasy may have set a record for his 5-10 record. Overall Schaumburg Stu is holding the lead at 37-26. Dan the Man is one game behind at 36-27. I’m in 3rd place at 31-32 while Mr. Fantasy slipped deeper into the cellar with a record of 28-35. Let’s see how Week 5 goes.

Could the MLB playoffs have gotten off to a better start? The Toronto Blue Jays hosted the Baltimore Orioles in the American League wild card game yesterday. The Blue Jays sent Marcus Stroman to the mound for the game and the Orioles countered with Chris Tillman. The Blue Jays got on the scoreboard first on a solo home run by Jose Bautista to lead off the bottom of the 2nd inning. In the top of the 4th inning Adam Jones got the first hit for the Orioles to lead off the inning. Jones went to 2nd on a ground out and then there was a liner to centerfield for the 2nd out. Then Major League home run leader Mark Trumbo gave the Orioles the lead when he hit a 2-run home run to leftfield. With one out in the bottom of the 5th inning Michael Saunders hit a ground rule double to left followed by a Kevin Pillar double to right, but some how Saunders only advanced to 3rd base. Ezequiel Carrera singled to centerfield to drive Saunders in and tie the game at 2-2. That ended Tillman’s night and the scoring for 6 innings. Brian Duensing was on the mound to start the bottom of the 11th inning for the Orioles. Duensing struck out Carrera for the 1st out of the inning and was then removed from the game for Ubaldo Jimenez. Devon Travis greeted Jimenez with a single. Josh Donaldson followed with a single of his own and Travis advanced to 3rd base. Edwin Encarnacion was up next and hit a 3-run walk off home run to leftfield for a 5-2 Blue Jays win.

Francisco Liriano picked up the win for the Blue Jays in relief while Jimenez gets the loss. Stroman went 6 innings giving up 2 runs on 4 hits while striking out 6. After Stroman the Blue Jays bullpen didn’t give up a run over 5 relief innings. Brett Cecil pitched 1/3rd of an inning, Joe Biagini pitched 2/3rd of an inning, Jason Grilli pitched an inning, Roberto Osuna pitched an 1 1/3rd innings then it was Liriano who pitched the final 1 2/3rds. Tillman lasted just 4 1/3rd innings for the Orioles giving up 2 runs on 4 hits while walking 1 and striking out 4. The Orioles had the best bullpen in baseball and it showed last night as they matched the Blue Jays outing up zero’s for 6 1/3rd innings. Mychal Givens followed Tillman and pitched 2 1/3rd innings. Then it was Donnie Hart for 1/3rd of an inning, Brad Brach for 1 1/3rd innings, Darren O’Day pitched 1 2/3rd innings before Duensing worked his 1/3rd of an inning. Jimenez didn’t get anyone out; so he didn’t pitch any innings. What you’ll notice about the Orioles pitching is that closer Zach Britton wasn’t used in the game. Britton had 47 saves and an ERA of 0.54 in the regular season.

Donaldson and Carrera where the only players with multiple hits in the game; they had 2 hits apiece. The Orioles recorded just 4 hits in the game.

The Blue Jays now advance to play the Texas Rangers starting Thursday night at Globe Life Park in Arlington Texas. The Blue Jays haven’t announced a starting pitcher for the game, but the Rangers are going with Cole Hamels as their Game 1 starter.

Can the National League wild card game match the excitement of last nights AL wild card game? The San Francisco Giants are going with Madison Bumgarner while the New York Mets have Noah Syndergaard on the mound tonight. Based on the starting pitchers it looks like we’ll get a pitchers duel, but the games don’t always go that way. Will we get that 1-0 or 2-1 game that people might think we’re going to get or will we see a 6-5 or a 9-8 game. While Syndergaard is still putting together his post season resume we’ve seen Bumgarner pitch in these situations time and time again. Will Bumgarner’s experience lead the Giants to a victory or will Syndergaard start to build that resume with a win for the Mets tonight.

With the NBA regular season starting at the end of the month fans of the Philadelphia 76ers finally got to see Joel Embiid play in a game. Embiid missed the first two seasons of his NBA career with foot injuries. In 13 minutes last night Embiid scored 6 points, grabbed 4 rebounds and blocked 2 shots in the 76ers 92-89 win over the Boston Celtics. In an odd twist for the 76ers Embiid made his debut the same day this season #1 overall pick Ben Simmons had foot surgery. Simmons is expected to be out a minimum of 8 weeks, but there have been reports that it will be longer than that.

The NHL season is even closer to starting than the NBA season and the Tampa Bay Lighting are still without one of their top players. Nikita Kucherov is a restricted free agent and is not in training camp with the start of the season a little less than two weeks away. Kucherov’s agent is Scott Greenspun and reports are he’s told Tampa Bay’s general manager Steve Yzerman that Kucherov will not show up until he gets a new deal. Kucherov is just 23 years old and was the Lighting’s leading scorer last season. Kucherov had 66 points on 30 goals and 36 assists. He was also the Lighting’s leading scorer in the playoffs with 19 points on 11 goals and 8 assists. Even though he hasn’t been in traing camp with hos teammates Kucherov has been on the ice as he played for Team Russia in the World Cup of Hockey.

NASCAR has moved into the 2nd round of The Chase and that means that the field of drivers was cut from 16 to 12. The 4 drivers who where eliminated from The Chase where Chris Buescher, teammates Jamie McMurray and Kyle Larson as well as Tony Stewart. Stewart is in his last season in NASCAR and there where a lot of fans who where hoping to see him go deep into The Chase. The 2nd round of The Chase kicks off Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway with the Bank of America 500. Will we see one of the 12 remaining Chase drivers get a win and automatically move into the 3rd round or will someone outside of The Chase find their way into victory lane.

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How was your Week

Posted: September 17, 2016 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, baseball, NASCAR, sports
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The Chicago Cubs became the first team to clinch a playoff spot when the San Francisco Giants beat the St. Louis Cardinals last Thursday night. You can call it a back in or however else you want to describe it, but with the lead the Cubs had in the division it they where going to win it one way or another.

The Cubs have 15 games left and there’s some good and some bad in that. The good of course is you can get your starting rotation set up in the order you want it. Another good thing is that you can get players like Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo some rest heading into the playoffs. Both Bryant and Rizzo have played in 142 games heading into this afternoon’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers. These last 15 games will also give the coaching staff a chance to look at the guys they’ll want to carry on the playoff roster. There’s always that last spot or two left on the playoff roster and while it may not matter as these players may not see the field you never know. The Cubs will also have a chance to get guys healthy. Jorge Soler left yesterday’s game with an injury that was reported as not being serious, but either way he’ll have time to get back to 100%. Pedro Strop should be returning soon and he’ll have some games to get ready to go for the playoffs.

There isn’t a ton of bad that goes with clinching early, but I think there are things that you have look out for. You have to make sure you don’t get complacent while your off. There is such a thing as too much rest; so you have to make sure the regulars stay sharp. I think the biggest thing that the Cubs will have to watch out for is when you have this type of lead and you get to cruise down the stretch is turning it back on again when the games count. You can add injuries in here, but you just never know when an injury is going to come up; so you can’t count that. Again there aren’t huge negatives with clinching early; it’s just stuff that the Cubs will have to look out for down the stretch.

The Chase for the Sprint Cup starts tomorrow at the Chicagoland Speedway with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400. There are 16 drivers who either won a race or qualified on points to make at Top 16. Chase Grid  Qualifying is this afternoon; so we don’t know who’s going to be on the pole, but they did have a practice session yesterday. Jimmie Johnson posted the fastest practice time, but there where four other Chase drivers right behind him. Carl Edwards was 2nd fastest with Denny Hamlin 3rd, Brad Keslowski 4th and Chase Elliott 5th. The NASCAR playoffs are starting.

We have our fantasy hockey draft coming pretty soon and while I know the top names I have a difficult time as the draft winds down finding that guy who can really help my team. It’s an auction style league; so there is some strategy on who to nominate when and try to make sure you land the guy you wanted. I found a couple of names that I think could help out a fantasy team later in the draft and I’m wondering what you think of them.

Nick Bjugstad of the Florida Panthers. Bjugstad is coming off an injury plagued season in 2015-16. He played in 67 games and put up 34 points last season. Can he get back to the player that led the Panthers in goals like he did in 2014-15.

Thomas Vanek scored 18 goals and 23 assists with the Minnesota Wild last season. In July the Detroit Red Wings signed Vanek 1-year $2.6 million dollar contract. Vanek will be looked upon to halp replace Pavel Datsyuk. Vanek has scored 40 goals twice in his NHL career and is it possible he gets close to that with the Red Wings.

Maybe I could sneak a young rookie defenseman through in the draft. How about someone like Nikita Zaitsev. Zaitsev played the last 3 season in the KHL for CSKA Moscow. He was a KHL All-Star in 2015 and 2016 as well as being named IIHF World Championship All-Star team in 2016. I know it’s tough for a rookie to make a big impact on defense, but this is a player who while considered a rookie isn’t really a rookie. Hopefully the Toronto Maple Leafs can find some ice time for him.

There’s a couple of names I’m looking at. Feel free to send me a name or two your looking at later in your draft.

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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.

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Baseball’s non-waiver trade deadline ended Monday afternoon and there where a lot of players that ended up changing teams. Now I’m not going to try and breakdown every trade that happen, but I want t talk about the way the trade deadline was rated. As you know by now they either rate a team as a trade deadline winner or losers. The one team that everyone seemed to continue to jump on and make sure everyone knew they lost at the trade deadline was the Chicago White Sox. Now the White Sox did trade set up man Zach Duke to the St. Louis Cardinals for minor league outfielder Charlie Tilson. This deal was not enough for the experts or anyone breaking down the trade deadline moves and the White Sox got the brunt of it.

The reason the White Sox where being considered the biggest loser at the trade deadline is the fact that they didn’t trade starting pitcher Chris Sale. This of course is just a huge joke. Sale is one of the top pitchers in baseball and to trade him you’d have to get quite a bit in return. There’s no way the White Sox should’ve traded Sale anywhere unless they could’ve gotten 5 prospects Double-A or higher who are major league ready. Now you’re really limiting which teams you can deal with by handling it that way, but you have to get value if you’re going to move a talent like Sale. So the White Sox couldn’t get a deal done for Sale and I don’t know why it’s such a bad thing for them to hold on to him.

The White Sox are 51-55 and find themselves 10 games behind the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central. They are 7 1/2 games out of a wild card spot, but they have 5 teams they’d need to jump to get one of those spots. It’s starting to look like the White Sox will not be a playoff team; so it’s a viable option to deal Sale, but if and only if your asking price is met. Sake is just 27 years old. He is 14-4 with an ERA of 3.17 in 20 starts. He has 3 complete games this season with 1 of them being a shutout. He has placed in the Top 6 of the Cy Young voting the last 5 seasons and he’s sure to end up there again. He led the American League in strikeouts last season and is currently 2nd this season with 133 strikeouts. So Sale is the best player on the White Sox and would easily bring the most in return if traded, but since the White Sox didn’t trade him they’re losers.

How about a team that is 10 games under .500 at 48-58. They’re 13 1/2 games out in their division and 10 games out of a wild card spot. Now this team didn’t trade it’s best player and they could’ve gotten a lot in return for him maybe even more than the White Sox would’ve gotten for Sale, but I didn’t hear this team lambasted like the White Sox where and put into the loser bracket. Why did no one jump up and down on the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for not trading Mike Trout? Aren’t the Angels farther away from competing than the White Sox are and couldn’t a rebuild really get started by dealing Trout for a boat load of prospects. Let’s keep looking for another team.

How about the 43-64 Arizona Diamondbacks. They are probably the most disappointing team in baseball this season. Now they paid big, big money for Zack Greinke in the off season and they also have Paul Goldschmidt on their team. Even though the Diamondbacks are going nowhere this season Greinke and Goldschmidt are still both with the Diamondbacks. It was just laughable that the White Sox where expected to move Sale, but these other under performing teams aren’t expected to move their best players to fix there teams. Are these guys just upset because Sale had that clubhouse freak out and cut up those throw back uniforms and that’s why he has to be moved. Either that or they where secretly rooting for Sale to be dealt to a team they want to see win and he could be the piece that puts them over the top. Anyway the guys breaking down the trade deadline where way, way out of line putting the White Sox where they did and expecting them to just more or less give away a top pitcher in baseball. Stupidity just plain and simple stupidity.

On Sunday the NASCAR race was postponed do to weather and moved to Monday. There where just 21 laps left when the Monday race had to be red flagged because of fog with rookie Chris Buescher in the lead. Buescher had to wait 80 minutes as the NASCAR officials decided what to do. With threats of severe weather and no lifting of the fog, NASCAR decided to end the race and Buescher had his very 1st Sprint Cup victory. Buescher along with 3rd place finisher Regan Smith hadn’t made their final pit stops when the caution flag came out for that fog at lap 132.  The drivers stayed on the track under caution for 7 laps as NASCAR decided to throw the red flag at lap 139. While there was some rain in the area the majority of the drivers pitted either because they needed fuel or because they thought the race would go longer. No one could predict the fog rolling in and ending the race. Buescher became the first rookie to win a Sprint Cup race since Joey Logano did it in 2009. What can be considered an odd win for Buescher had to use an odd Victory Lane. They moved Victory Lane into the garage since NASCAR couldn’t use the real Victory Lane because of the threat of lightning. While Buescher did get the win he hasn’t yet qualified for The Chase for the Sprint Cup. Buescher sits six points behind 30th-place David Ragan in the Sprint Cup standings. A driver has to be in the top 30 to qualify for the Chase via a race victory. Buescher has 5 races to make up those 6 points and get himself into the Top 30 in points and qualify for The Chase. NASCAR Schedule

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