Archive for the ‘baseball’ Category

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: September 2, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Monday was the trade deadline in Major League Baseball and there was a lot more activity than everybody thought there would be. Where you surprised by all the deals at the trade deadline?

Now it seems as the San Diego Padres have won the award for trade deadline winners, but there where a lot of teams that made moves and some where surprising.

The Cleveland Indians did decide to part way with Mike Clevinger and he was dealt to San Diego in a trade that had nine player in it. The Arizona Diamondbacks dealt a couple of what would’ve been their upcoming free agents as they sent left hander Robbie Ray to the Toronto Blue Jays. They also traded outfielder Starling Marte to the Miami Marlins. Humorously earlier on Monday everyone thought the Marlins where going to be sellers because they sent Jonathan Villar to the Blue Jays, but then they surprised everyone by turning around and acquiring Marte. These where just a few of the players that ended up changing teams on Monday, but I’m not going to go through every deal because I’m sure there have been plenty of other people who have already done that.

Now while there are winners at the trade deadline there are also losers. Even though the Los Angeles Dodgers have looked like the best teams in baseball they where added into the loser slot because the only deal they made had them sending Ross Stripling to Toronto for two players to be named later. The New York Yankees where also looked at as trade deadline loser since they didn’t make a deal. Now I want to look at who where the trade deadline losers, but in another way.

In a weird way I think the biggest losers at the trade deadline where the fans. Now maybe you where happy that your favorite team picked up what could be a key piece in a playoff run r maybe you’re happy with what you’re favorite team did in working towards rebuilding their franchise and that’s not where the fans lose out.

So why do I think the fans came out as losers in this trade deadline? Well for the 8th time in 9 seasons it looks like the best player in baseball Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels will be at home during the playoffs and that’s sad.

Trout has made just one playoff appearance in his career and that lasted just three games. In 2014 the Angels where swept by the Kansas City Royals in the ALCS and this is the only time Trout has seen playoff baseball. Not including this season which looks like it will be their 5th the Angels have been an under .500 team and it doesn’t seem they’re on their way to changing that.

The Angels are currently 12-24 and in last place in the AL West. They are 11 games behind the division leading Oakland A’s. And while they weren’t really huge sellers at the trade deadline they didn’t go out looking to add anyone either.

At the trade deadline the Angels sent catcher Jason Castro to the Padres for right handed pitcher Gerardo Reyes who was immediately sent to their alternative training site. The other deal the Angels made saw them sending outfielder Brian Goodwin to the Cincinnati Reds for left handed pitcher Packy Naughton and either a player to be named later or cash considerations.

Reyes pitched in 27 games for the Padres last season and while he did go 4-0 while striking out 38 batters over 26 innings, but he had an ERA of 7.62. Reyes will probably fill a relief role if he’s used by the Angels. As for Naughton he was picked by the Reds in the 9th round of the 2019 draft and hasn’t pitched in the majors. He split 2019 between high Class A and Double A where he went 11-12 with an ERA of 3.32 in 28 starts covering 157 innings. Naughton is 24 years old; so maybe he’ll develop into a starting pitcher for the Angels, but will have to wait and see.

While the Angels have always had a good offense it’s been pitching that’s been holding them back and while they added some depth to the starting rotation this past off season they never really address the bullpen. The Angels came into the 2020 shortened season with Hansel Robles as their closer. In 2019 Robles looked like he might be able to handle to closing role as he picked up 23 saves after taking over the closers role, but unfortunately Robles was unable to continue that success into the 2020 season. Robles has appeared in 12 games pitching 11 innings. He managed to pick up just 1 save and his ERA is 10.64 not exactly the kind of numbers you’re looking for out of a closer. Ty Buttrey has taken over as the Angels closer and has done a solid job posting 4 saves and an ERA of 3.00 in 16 games this season.

Trout has been in the majors for 9 full seasons and he’s signed with the Angels until the 2030 season; so he’s not going anywhere unless the frustration of not making the playoffs gets to him and he forces a trade. So it brings up the question of; when will we see Trout back in the playoffs? Or maybe the question should be; will we see Trout back in the playoffs?

Being that the Angels are a west coast team Trout doesn’t get the exposure that some players do, but if he and the Angels could just find their way into the playoffs a tie or to he’d have the showcase he needs to truly become the face of baseball. To be honest I’m not sure that Trout would even want to be that as he really hasn’t looked for media attention with the exception of those Subway commercials a few years back, but it would be nice if baseball fans could see the best player in baseball perform on the biggest stage baseball has.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com. If you miss the live version of the podcast it is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

Feel free to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 26, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

As I was doing my research for fantasy baseball season one of the things that seemed to be agreed on was that with the exception of the very best starting pitchers they wouldn’t have much impact this season. There where also people who thought that starters would only pitch 3 or 4 innings per start. Now either these experts where wrong or after last night Lucas Giolito has moved into the upper echelon of starting pitching.

Through five starts this season Giolito was 1-2 with and ERA of 4.88. On August 20th he went 7 innings against the Detroit Tigers. He struck out 13 and didn’t give up any runs. Last night it was Giolito’s turn to start. This time against the Pittsburgh Pirates and made it a memorable start.

Last night Giolito threw the 19th no-hitter in Chicago White Sox history. He also recorded the most strikeouts 13 in any no-hitter thrown by a White Sox pitcher.

It took Giolito 101 pitches to no-hit the Pirates last night. He did walk one batter and of course there where some good defensive plays to help keep the no-hitter in tacked.

Jose Abreu made two good plays on throws from Tim Anderson. On one play Abreu had to come off of 1st base to handle a throw from Anderson, but was still able to tag the Pittsburgh runner trying to reach base safely. The other play saw Anderson one hop a throw to 1st base that Abreu was able to pick cleanly for an out. The other quality defensive play was the final out of the game. On what may have been the only bad pitch Giolito made all night he left a pitch up and Eric Gonzalez hit a line drive that looked like it might be headed for the rightfield corner. Luckily Adam Engel took the proper angle on it and was able to cut the ball off and make the catch to end the game and keep the no-hitter for Giolito.

Giolito was the 16th pick in the 2012 draft by the Washington Nationals, but thing didn’t go all that well for him with Washington. After pitching in part of four minor league seasons with the Nationals Giolito was called up. He made 4 starts for Washington and pitched in 6 total games to end the 2016 season. Giolito had his issues; he pitched 21 1/3rd innings and went 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA. After having those struggles at the major league level Washington traded Giolito along with Reynaldo Lopez and Dane Dunning to the White Sox for outfielder Adam Eaton.

After being drafted as high as he was Giolito was looked at as someone who would develop into a #1 starter. He spent most of the 2017 season in AAA Giolito was called up and made 7 starts that season and pitched well. In those 7 starts Giolito went 3-3 with a 2.38 ERA. After showing that potential Giolito spent the entire 2018 season in the starting rotation and he had his issues. He made 32 starts that season pitching 173 1/3rd innings. He went 10-13 and posted a 6.13 ERA which I believe was the highest for any starting pitcher that season. It should’ve come as no surprise that there was talk that Giolito would never become the pitcher people thought he would be when he was drafted, but last season he showed he could develop into that. Giolito pitched in 29 games covering 176 2/3rd innings. He went 14-9 ad his ERA came down to 3.41. He also had 3 complete games; 2 of which where shutouts. Now you add a no-hitter to Giolito’s resume and it looks like the White Sox got a pretty good deal.

Giolito’s next start is scheduled for this coming Sunday against the Kansas City Royals; so we’ll see if he can continue to pitch well or if there might be a little bit of a no-hitter hangover.

The White Sox could use for Giolito to turn into that #1 starter people thought he’d be coming out of the draft. Right now the White Sox would make the expended playoffs, but they’d be one of the two wild card teams. As it’s turning out the AL Central is looking like it’s going to be a tougher division than people predicted it to be. The Minnesota Twins currently lead the division by 1 1/2 games over the Cleveland Indians and the White Sox.

With the win last night the White Sox are 18-12; so their season is officially half way over. They’ll have seven more games against the Twins and three more games against the Indians to try and make up some ground and not have to play in that wild card game.

Do you see the White Sox making the playoffs? And if they do get into the playoffs; would you consider that a surprise?

While we’re in the AL Central the Indians and the Twins are playing the third game of a three game series today. Minnesota won the first game 3-2 behind Kenta Maeda while Cleveland took the second game 4-2 behind Shane Bieber. Interestingly for the rubber match today the Indians are bringing Mike Clevinger back from the teams alternative training site to make the start in today’s game. The Twins will be countering with Jose Berrios.

I found it interesting that Clevinger is being brought back up, but Zach Plesac is not. Without going into the whole story I’m sure you remember that Clevinger and Plesac had some issues in Chicago after going out on the town after a Plesac start.

I understand that Clevinger is the better pitcher out of the two, but I really think what he did ended up being worse than what Plesac did. Remember Clevinger actually got on the team plane and flew back to Cleveland with his teammates potentially exposing them to Covid-19. Now it’s possible Plesac would’ve gotten on the plane as well, but he got caught sneaking into the team hotel and was given a rental car and had to drive back to Cleveland alone.

Adam Plutko took a couple turns in the starting rotation and top prospect Triston McKenzie made his major league debut while Clevinger and Plesac where at the alternative training site. It looks like Plutko will head back to the bullpen while McKenzie will stay in the rotation along with Clevinger.

So what does this mean for Plesac? With the trade deadline 5 days away you have to wonder if his days in Cleveland are numbered.

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

Feel free to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 19, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The Cleveland Indians are currently in 2nd place in the American League Central just 1 1/2 games behind the division leading Minnesota Twins, but they find themselves in a bit of a quandary with a couple of their starting pitchers.

Let’s do a quick recap. On August 8th Zach Plesac made a start against the Chicago White Sox. Plesac picked up the win; he pitched 6 innings gave up 5 hits and no runs while walking 1 and striking out 7. It was Plesac’s first win of the season in 3 starts and it lowered his ERA to 1.29. So he was off to g a good start this season.

Now Plesac was born in Crown Point Indiana and went to college at Ball State which is in Muncie Indiana neither of which are too far from Chicago. After the game Plesac decided to go out to dinner with some friends. Now this is against MLB’s protocol due to the Covid-19 situation. Now Plesac got caught sneaking back into the Indians hotel and the team got him a rental car and made him drive back to Cleveland by himself just in case he had been exposed to the Covid-19 virus while he was out.

As it turned out unbeknownst to the Indians another of their starting pitchers was out that night with Plesac. Mike Clevinger joined Plesac on his night out in Chicago, but apparently made it back into the team hotel without being caught and even flew back to Cleveland on the team plane before it was found out that he was out with Plesac.

Once back in Cleveland Plesac and Clevinger where both placed in quarantine and tested for the Covid-19 virus now luckily neither player has had a positive test, but the incident has caused a bit of a rift with their Indians teammates. With both Plesac and Clevinger going through their 10 day quarantine with no positive tests they where eligible to rejoin the team. Now before the Indians game Friday night against the Detroit Tigers there was a team meeting and players spoke their minds about what Plesac and Clevinger had done. Now apparently Francisco Lindor spoke and was very critical of Plesac and Clevinger’s action, but the player who really made an impact at the meeting was veteran reliver Oliver Perez who went so far as to say that if Plesac and Clevinger where put back on the roster he’d opt out of the remainder of the season.

Now I thought they might all be able to get together and work something out so Plesac and Clevinger could rejoin the team, but as of right now they are both at the teams alternative training site, but that can’t last forever.

So what do you do if you’re the Indians?

Clevinger is 29 years old and has really come into his own as a starting pitcher. He had some injury issues last season, but still went 13-4 in his 21 starts with an ERA of 2.71. Plesac is even younger; just 25. Last season he made 21 starts going 8-6 with a 3.81 ERA.

Is it possible that the Indians might be forced to trade away two young starting pitchers? If they did go that route; what could they get for them? and which team would be willing to make a deal?

Not only are both of these starters young, but Clevinger has two more seasons of arbitration while Plesac is still in pre-arbitration and doesn’t reach free agency until 2026. That’s a lot of value in two young starters, but do the Indians have to trade them?

Now look what they did was wrong and they got very luckily that neither of them contracted Covid-19 while they where out especially Clevinger who endangered his entire team, but I’m not sure if this is an offense that  means banishment from the team. I can understand their teammates being upset with them and they should be, but there’s got to be a way to work this out without them being forced off the team.

Now if the Indians where to trade them; what would they be looking for? Don’t forget that Lindor only has one more year of arbitration before he becomes a free agent and there’s very little chance of him staying in Cleveland unless he’s willing to sign a contract they way under his value. Is it possible that Cleveland could use either Plesac or Clevinger to try and get their future shortstop? There are some shortstops ranked in the Top 10 major league prospects, but would their current teams be willing to deal them for a young starting pitcher; it’s difficult to say. It’s possible that the Indians might want young pitchers who are still in the minors for their major league young pitchers and it also might be that Cleveland could be looking for a cornerstone type of outfielder since they haven’t had much luck with their own outfield prospects.

Now only time will tell which way the Indians go with this situation, but it might be sooner than you think. I believe that since Plesac and Clevinger where on the 40 man roster they can only spend a maximum of 10 days at the alternative training site; so we might get a answer as soon as next week.

I definitely need your opinion on this one. How do you feel about what Plesac and Clevinger did? Then what do you think the Indians should do? Do you think they should trade them? Or do you think they should let them stay with the team and try to regain their teammates trust? Now if you think they should be given a second chance by the Indians; do you think this affects the way the team plays? I’m also wondering if you think that other players have done something similar to this and gotten away with it?

I do know if I was many of the rebuilding team in MLB I’d be in contact with the Indians very quickly to find out if we could work out a deal. A pair of starters like Plesac and Clevinger could really speed up a teams rebuilding process.

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the live version of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you’d like to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

 

How was your week

Posted: August 15, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The New York Yankees are 13-6 and have won their last three games in a row. They are in 1st place in the American League East two games ahead of both the Tampa Bay Rays and the surprising Baltimore Orioles.

Now the Yankees where a popular pick to win the World Series before the season started and they’ve looked like a good choice so far, but they’ve had a couple of injuries that could slow them down.

Now the Yankees knew all along that they would be without starting pitcher Luis Severino for the entire  game season. Aroldis Chapman hasn’t pitched this season due to illness, but was scheduled to throw a simulated game yesterday. If Chapman’s simulated game went well he could possibly join the Yankees bullpen soon. That bullpen took a hit earlier this month when set up man Tommy Kahnle injured his elbow. Unfortunately Kahnle is done for the season and will require Tommy John surgery. In almost a flashback to last season the injuries just seem to keep coming for the Yankees. Four days ago the Yankees placed outfielder/designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton on the Injured List. Stanton was diagnosed with a Grade 1 strain of his left hamstring. This injury normally has a recovery time of three to four weeks, but it was reported yesterday that Stanton’s injury is worse than expected and his timetable for return may be long than those three to four weeks. Then yesterday the Yankees added outfielder Aaron Judge to the Injury List. Judge hadn’t played in the last couple of games because of his injury which was diagnosed as a mild calf strain.

Judge has been the Yankees best player this season. He was hitting .290 with 9 home runs and 20 RBI’s. Those 9 home runs lead all of baseball and his 20 RBI’s are tied for the lead in baseball with three other players. Even though Judge had played just 17 games there where quite a few media members who had already awarded him the MVP.

Now last season the Yankees had quite a few injuries and where still able to win the A.L. East. The Yankees swept the Minnesota Twins in the ALDS before being beaten by the Houston Astros 4 games to 2 in the ALCS. Of course the Yankees where able to recover from their injuries last season over the course of a 162 game season. Will they be able to do the same thing this season with just a 60 game season?

In last nights Yankees line up Luke Voit batted 2nd in the Yankees line up; which is where Judge normally hits. Mike Tauchman played rightfield in Judge’s place while Clint Frazier was called up from the teams alternative site and filled in for Stanton as the designated hitter. Thairo Estrada was called up to take Judge’s spot on the roster.

Obviously not just one player can replaced what Judge has given the Yankees on offense this season, but it could soften the blow a little if Gary Sanchez, Gleybar Torres and Brett Gardner start to hit. Currently Sanchez is hitting .113, Torres is hitting .217 and Gardner is hitting .163.

Tauchman and Frazier should get the majority of the playing time in rightfield, but it’s possible that utilityman Tyler Wade might see some innings out there. Even though Frazier filled in at DH last night you have to think that Mike Ford will get some of those DH at bats. The Yankees also have Miguel Andujar at their alternative training site; so it’s possible he could be brought back up and help fill the void left by the bats of Judge and Stanton.

The Yankees currently have a two game lead in the division, but can they hold onto that lead with Judge gone for a minimum of 10 days and Stanton appearing to be gone for a month or more. With the expanded playoffs this season it’s doubtful that even if the Yankees struggle with these players out they’d miss out on those playoffs, but I guess it’s an outside possibility.

With 41 games left on their schedule; where do you think the Yankees will end up?

The St. Louis Cardinals haven’t played a game since July 29th do to a Covid-19 outbreak within the team, but the Cardinals are scheduled to restart their season with a doubleheader against the Chicago White Sox today.

With just five games under their belt this season it’s very doubtful that the Cardinals will be able to play the entire 60 game schedule. It does appear that Major League Baseball is going to try and get the Cardinals to that 60 game mark, but that’s going to entail them playing multiple doubleheaders and you have to think that the strain of that kind of schedule isn’t going into play towards the Cardinals favor of making the playoffs.

How do you think the rest of the Cardinals season goes? When the Miami Marlins came out of their Covid-19 quarantine they played and have continued to play very well. Could St. Louis go on a run like the Marlins did and get themselves into the expanded playoffs? Or is the strain of trying to play 55 games over the remainder of the season just be too much for the team to handle?

The Cardinals four have doubleheaders schedule between now and their next day off which is September 3rd. After that day off the St. Louis has seven doubleheaders on the schedule and just one other schedule day off on September 9th. I doubt that at any other time in baseball history has a team tried to play that kind of a schedule.

Just as the Cardinals are getting ready to return to play it was reported that the Cincinnati Reds had a player test positive for Covid-19 jeopardizing the teams game tonight against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

While this isn’t the first time this season that the Reds have had Covid-19 issues it doesn’t appear as this is the first actual case the team has had. Reds infielder Matt Davidson actually had a positive test results, but all follow up testing came back negative which led to the belief that the first test result was a false positive. Mike Mouatakas and Nick Senzel self reported symptoms and ended up on the injury list until a negative test allowed them to be reinstated. Joey Votto also spent one day on the injury list before being allowed to return.

The Reds will have to go through extensive testing and with that going on you’d have to think that the remainder of their series against the Pirates will be postponed. Hopefully those will be the only postponements the Reds will face, but will have to wait to find that out.

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you don’t catch up with the live edition of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you’d like.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 12, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Major League Baseball announced the suspensions from Sunday when the benches emptied in the Oakland A’s/Houston Astros game and I have to say I think they really dropped the ball on this.

Now if you remember there was a lot of concern at the start of spring training that pitchers would throw at Astros hitters because of the cheating scandal. MLB even went so far as to warn teams about excess Astros being hit by pitches. Apparently MLB didn’t happen to mention anything to the Astros about their pitchers hitting batters.

As of now Joe Kelly of the Los Angeles Dodgers appears to be the only pitcher who has intentionally tried to hit Astros hitters. Kelly ended up with an eight game suspension even though he didn’t manage to hit anyone and wasn’t even ejected from the game he was pitching in.

That brings us to last weekend. In the process of being swept in a three game series by the A’s somehow Astros pitchers managed to hit five Oakland hitters while no one from Houston was hit. If you go back to the start of the accusations about Houston’s cheating it was one of their former players Mike Fiers who pretty much confirmed everything and that’s when MLB decided to look into the matter further. Interestingly enough Fiers now pitches for the A’s. Is it possible that the Astros are the team that’s carrying the grudge and not the teams they cheated against? Obviously with Fiers being a pitcher in the American League he’s never going to come to the plate for an at bat; so what’s the next best thing? Go after his teammates and it appears that’s what the Astros pitchers did.

On Sunday after Oakland outfielder Ramon Laureano was hit for the second time in the game he was a little upset on his way to first base and rightfully so. Laureano started jawing with the Astros dugout on his way to first base and things escalated after he got to first base. Houston’s hitting coach Alex Cintron was responding to Laureano from the dugout and from reports was saying some disparaging things about Laureano’s mother. After trading some barbs Laureano had enough and went after Cintron, but Cintron hide behind some of the Astros players and Laureano was cut off by his former teammate now Houston back up catcher Dustin Garneau. Of course the benches emptied, but there where no punches thrown just a lot of pushing and shoving.

Now going back to the start of this 60 game season MLB told each team that they didn’t want the benches to empty in situations like this because of the Covid-19 outbreak. MLB also said there would be harsh penalties if teams didn’t follow this rule. I’m not sure the suspensions they announced would be considered hash.

Yesterday MLB announced that Laureano is suspended for 6 games. He is appealing by the way. Cintron who was really the instigator in this incident was given a 20 game suspension. Being that he’s a coach Cintron doesn’t have the option to appeal and began serving his suspension last night.

Now I think MLB really blew it here, but not with Laureano. I honestly thought that Laureano would get an eight game suspension like Kelly got, but I’m okay with him getting six games. It the Cintron suspension that I have a real issue with.

Now you can’t hear what anyone is saying on the video, but you can clearly see that it’s Cintron who is the main Houston in this case coach who is doing the majority of the bantering with Laureano. You can also see Cintron motion over and over for Laureano to come towards him, but when Laureano did Cintron hide very, very quickly. I’m sorry, but this deserved way more than a 20 game suspension. I really believe that Cintron should’ve been suspended for the rest of the season and the playoffs if the Astros make it into the post season. MLB had said that this is the last thing they wanted to have happen this season and Cintron was the guy who made it happen. You’d think that would make him the perfect guy for MLB to make an example of to make sure no coach does something like this again. I just don’t think 20 games is enough.

If you haven’t seen the video please take the time to take a look at it and then try to tell me I’m wrong. If you’ve seen the video I’d be interested to know what you think about these suspensions. Do you think 6 games was enough for Laureano? Or do you believe he should’ve gotten more or less? What about Cintron was 20 games enough? Or do you believe he should’ve gotten more or less?

How about we wrap the blog up with a nice comeback story.

Last night in the Colorado Rockies 8-7 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks Daniel Bard got his 1st save for the Rockies this season. Not only was that Bard’s first save this season it was his first save since 2011 when he was a member of the Boston Red Sox.

Bard was looked at someone who would be a future closer for the Red Sox and after very good years as a set up man in 2010 & 2011 an injury limited Bard to just 17 appearances in 2012. Unfortunately Bard also struggled with more injuries in 2013 and only made 2 appearances for the Red Sox that season. Bard was always thought to have a good arm; so teams continue to take a look at him. He pitched in the minors with the Texas Rangers, St. Louis Cardinals and New York Mets and teams like the Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates had him on their rosters, but he never pitched for them. Bard pitched in 23 games from 2014, 2016 & 2017. He hadn’t pitched the last two seasons or in 2015, but this off season the Rockies signed him. That time off seems to have done Bard some good. He’s appeared in 8 games for the Rockies this season. Bard has an ERA of 3.00; he’s 1-0 with that 1 save and he’s struck out 12 hitters over 9 innings while not walking anyone. Since the media likes to hand out awards early in a season I’d have to say that Bard is definitely the front runner for Comeback Player of the Year.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkradio.com, but if you miss the live edition of the podcast all you have to do is head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you want.

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

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 5, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

It’s the start of August and there are plenty of sports on television for fans to watch and while you’d think it’s a good thing I’m not totally sure it is. Now normally this is just baseball season with sports fans getting ready for football, but with the pandemic we also have the NHL and the NBA playing. This can make things difficult to not only watch, but to keep up with. Are you keeping up? I’m not.

As I’ve mentioned many times I don’t enjoy what the NBA has turned into and all I really do is flip on a game to get a score and then I move on. Watching professional basketball players stand around at the 3-point line and shoot doesn’t interest me. I’m also not interested in watching a guy dunk when he has to travel to do it. I thought that’s what the dunk contest was for. It’s just so boring for me to watch a player drive the lane and either dunk or throw the basketball out to the 3-point line so one of his teammates can launch a 3-pointer. I’m not even going to go into defense in the NBA mostly because it’s nonexistent and if a player seems to try to play defense he’ll be called for a foul. I know that the NBA has lots of fans, but I’m just not one of them.

As for the NHL I guess it’s just the fact that it’s August and they should be preparing for next season not just starting the playoffs. I’m sure the fact that it’s summer and not cold and snowy out like I picture the weather being outside when the NHL plays. I’ve tried multiple times to sit down and watch one of these NHL playoff games, but it just doesn’t hold my attention for more than a few minutes. Maybe I’ll find myself more interested as teams get eliminated, but I’m not actually sure if that will happen or not. at least I have a local team to root for in the NHL playoffs, but who knows if the Chicago Blackhawks will even get out of this play in round or whatever they’re calling it. I think if the Blackhawks could get on a run in these playoffs that might peak my interest, but it just seems weird to me to watch playoff hockey in August.

I don’t believe that either the NBA or the NHL has mentioned when they might try to get what would be their 2020-21 season started. There was some talk about the NBA waiting until Christmas day to open their season, but I haven’t heard any rumors about what the NHL might do.

When the next season finally does open for the NHL and the NBA will they allow the players to travel or will they attempt to do another “bubble” type set up. Would either league try to play a full schedule of games next season? There’s no doubt that both the NHL and the NBA seasons for what would’ve been 2020-21 is going to start late. Will either league try to pay a full 82 game schedule? I’m not sure if either league would be willing to try to do that, but if not what number of games would they come up with? Would they set it up along the lines that Major League Baseball did and have teams play mostly within their division. With the geography of the NHL and the NBA it might be best if they have team just play against conference opponents. Of course the NBA would have to figure out what to do with the Memphis Grizzlies since they are in the Western Conference. The Grizzlies ended up in the Western Conference because when they entered the NBA they played in Vancouver.

What do you think about next season. How many games do you think that the NHL or the NBA might try to play next season?

Obviously I’m not keeping up with the restarted NBA season, but I don’t believe that they’ve even started their playoffs yet. How long is this NBA season going to go? I get that they brought the league back because they wanted to get their hands on as much television and sponsorship money as they could, but it seems ridiculous that they’re still having what would be considered regular season games. At least the NHL is in some sort of playoff situation.

On the plus side when it comes to the NHL and the NBA it seems as though their “bubble” set up is working as I don’t believe either league has reported a positive Covid-19 test since they’ve been playing in the “bubble”. Let’s hope that continues and neither league has to deal with any kind of virus outbreak like MLB has had to. Don’t forget that the NHL has two “bubble” set ups with no positive Covid-19 tests.

MLB had to deal with another team dealing with a Covid-19 outbreak. This time it was the St. Louis Cardinals. I believe the Cardinals ended up with 13 total members of their traveling party testing positive for the Covid-19 virus.

Yesterday St. Louis placed Paul DeJong, Junior Fernandez, Kodi Whitley, Edmundo Sosa, Rangel Ravelo and Yader Molina on the IL. All players have tested positive for Covid-19. Carlos Martinez was also added to the IL yesterday, but his injury was listed as undisclosed.

Due to this outbreak the Cardinals have canceled a four game series in Milwaukee against the Brewers as well as a four game series in Detroit against the Tigers. Even though that series was in Detroit the Cardinals where scheduled to be the home team in two of those games. Major League Baseball also went ahead and canceled the Cardinals game against the Chicago White Sox on August 13th that was scheduled to be played at Field of Dreams in Iowa. As long as the Cardinals can clear Covid-19 testing they’ll restart their season this Friday as they host the Chicago Cubs for the start of a three game series.

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: August 1, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Major League Baseball returned for a shortened 60-game season on July 23rd. Now with the season just 10 days old the question is; will they be able to get even a 60-game season in?

On Friday MLB commissioner told MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark on Friday that if the sport doesn’t do a better job of managing the coronavirus the season could come to an abrupt end.

MLB’s concerned started with the Miami Marlins. After the Marlins took two of three from the Philadelphia Phillies in Philadelphia they where preparing to return to Miami for their home opener against the Baltimore Orioles.

Unfortunately for the Marlins they where unable to return home as they had multiple players and coaches test positive for the Covid-19 virus. As of now 21 members of the organization tested positive for COVID-19 and they haven’t played a game since July 26th and they’re not scheduled to even try to play again until this coming Tuesday August 4th. AS of now 7 Marlins games have been postponed; 4 against the Orioles and 3 against the Washington Nationals. No make up dates have been announced for these games and it hasn’t even been announced if the Marlins will be able to restart their season against the Phillies on Tuesday.

Then yesterday as the Milwaukee Brewers where getting ready to play their home opener against the St. Louis Cardinals the Cardinals had 2 players test positive for the Covid-19 virus and the game was immediately postponed. As for this game it was announced that it would be made up as part of a doubleheader on Sunday.

If another outbreak was to take place like the one that the Marlins are going through right now commissioner Manfred has the power to shutdown the season and it appears he’d move in that direction if another team suffered an outbreak. It’s possible that commissioner Manfred could shut the season down as early as Monday if the number of positive test continue to rise or if players don’t continue to follow the league protocols.

Not only has union head Clark been briefed, but multiple players have also been told about the situation. Keith Olbermann of ESPN is reporting that Major League Baseball has reached out the the networks that are televising their game and advised them to look at possible alternate programming after this weekend.

It’s difficult to know what players do where they’re away from the ballpark, but one high ranking official has said “There are some bad decisions being made.” Chicago Cubs outfielder Steven Souza took things a step further saying “Every player in this league better take a hard look at what you’re doing off the field, because what you do affects, more than just you and your team.” Souza added “Your decisions off the field will put all of our seasons in jeopardy this year.”

On Thursday Major League Baseball along with the players association announced the results from their Covid-19 testing. There have been 11,895 samples taken by MLB over the past week. 29 of the test came back with a positive result for the Covid-19 virus. 20 of those positive test belonged to players while the other 9 positive test where from team staff members.

When the outbreak happened with the Marlins the media jumped all over Major League Baseball and did everything they could to vilify them and accuse them of not handling the situation properly. In what has to be looked at as a strange turn of events Dr. Fauci who has become the go to guy when it comes to the Covid-19 virus whether he wanted to or not came out and said that Major League Baseball did a good job of handling the Marlins outbreak. Of course none of those media members that destroyed MLB when the outbreak happened haven’t mentioned anything that Dr. Fauci said; of course that’s no surprise.

Do you think that MLB will be able to finish this shortened season?

The National Football League finally announced Antonio Brown’s punishment. In case you don’t remember the NFL has been investigating Brown since he was accused of sexual assault by an artist who was working in his home in 2017. Brown also had an incident in June and ended up pleading no contest to a felony burglary with battery charge and two lesser misdemeanor charges related to a January incident with a moving truck company outside his home in Hollywood, Florida.

For these two incidents Brown was given and 8-game suspension for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy. Brown has also been advised by the NFL to continue counseling and treatment.

Brown’s agent Ed Wasielewski said that Brown has no plans to appeal this 8-game suspension.

With this ruling teams now understand what they’re dealing with if they decide to sign Brown. Even with this 8-game suspension Brown would be able to participate in the team that signs him preseason activities. The suspension would take effect after the final roster reduction September 5th and he would be eligible to return after the team plays eight games.

While there have been a few teams that have expressed some interest in Brown there’s also a possibility that he could could be facing another suspension.

The NFL is still investigating Brown as another woman is alleging that she was sexually assaulted by Brown. A former trainer of Brown’s has filed a lawsuit against him over these sexual assault claims. Brown has stated that his sexual relationship with this trainer was consensual and Brown met with the NFL in November as part of this investigation.

Once the NFL concludes it’s investigation into this incident it’s possible that Brown could face another suspension or depending on when the ruling is made it could be another suspension.

Brown played one game for the New England Patriots in September of last season before being released as some of these allegations started to surface.

Brown has shown throughout his NFL career that he is talented, but you have to wonder if there’s a team out there that think he’s worth taking a chance on with all the baggage that comes along with him.

Would you like to see your favorite NFL team sign Brown?

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

Also feel free to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: July 29, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Apparently this is going to be a different type of baseball season for me. When they first put in this 60 game season I had almost no desire to watch any of the games, but then they started. Opening day didn’t really interest me; so I only ended up watching an inning or two of those games, but then my local teams opened up. I don’t know why, but my interest really picked up for opening day of the two local Chicago teams. Now we’re six games into the season and I barely watch either of what turned out to be three games the Chicago games where involved in yesterday. I’m not sure what causing this, but all of a sudden I’m this bipolar baseball fan and I’m wondering if the entire season is going to be like this.

I’m looking for some kind of help here. If this is happened to you or if you have any idea why my interest in this baseball season waned so quickly.

I do know that one of the things that has bothered me the last couple of days is the way the mainstream media has reacted to the Miami Marlins situation.

I’m sure you know that they had multiple players and coaches test positive for the Covid-19 virus and their games have been suspended until at least Sunday.

I found it shocking that there where mainstream media members that where surprised this happened and they went on to call it a nightmare scenario for baseball and there where even some of these goofs calling for an immediate end to the baseball season. Did they honestly believe that we would get through the entire baseball season without one positive test for the Covid-19 virus?

I know that a lot of people and the media want to try and compare Major League Baseball to the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League, but you can’t.

Both the NBA and the NHL have set up “bubble” situations for their players to pay under. If you’re a baseball player you’re more or less living your normal life. If you have a home game you sleep in your own bed and spend time with your family before going to the ballpark. In the case of the Marlins they where on the road; so they where staying in a hotel. Did someone pick up the virus there or did some of the players or coaches go out for dinner and possibly contracted it while they where out. Unfortunately there’s just no way to tell.

Now of course this was played up as a terrible story and everyone wanted to put baseball in a bad light over this. Oddly what very few reporters mentioned was that the Philadelphia Phillies who where the team that was hosting the Marlins had ZERO positive tests for the Covid-19 virus. Do you find it odd that a lot of reporters left this fact out of their story?

Obviously it’s a big deal that these players and coaches got sick and hopefully they’ll all recover quickly and without any issues, but unfortunately this kind of thing can happen when you’re working in normal society. Remember these players are going to work like a lot of people still are; so they’re having interactions with people who aren’t involved with Major League Baseball and they can’t control how or what those people do in their lives. Of course this doesn’t mean that people are out there intentionally trying to infect a sports team all I’m saying is their daily interactions can’t be monitor by Major League Baseball, but a player may run into someone on a plane, in the hotel the team is staying at or quite a few places when a team is on the road.

I’m sure that most of the mainstream media just wants to point the finger at Major League Baseball and say it’s all their fault, but since all of the Phillies players and coaches tested negative you’d have to think that Citizens Bank Ballpark where the Philadelphia plays it’s home games is clean.

Now not only did Major League Baseball postpone all of the Marlins games until Sunday they also postponed the series between the Phillies and the New York Yankees that was scheduled to start last night in Philadelphia. As of now Miami has seven games postponed; four against the Baltimore Orioles and three against the Washington Nationals. The next scheduled game the Marlins might play might be at home oddly enough against the Phillies. Will have to wait and see if Major League Baseball allows the Marlins to play those games.

The one thing that I’m very interested in that Major League Baseball hasn’t announced yet is how are they going to make up these games. I’m sure most people don’t consider the Marlins a playoff contender, but in a shortened 60 game season you never know. Of course the Yankees and the Phillies where considered playoff contenders and they’ll have four games to make up against each other when this is all said and done. Those four games could have huge playoff ramifications; so they’re probably going to need to find a way to play them.

What do you think Major League Baseball should do with these postponed games? Should they make them up? Or just try to go with an unbalanced schedule?

Should anybody be really surprised that the Los Angeles Dodgers pitchers threw inside, over and behind some of the Houston Astros hitters last night?

As I’m sure you all remember that it was the dodgers that the Astros where caught cheating against in the 2018 World Series; so you had to expect that there where going to still be some hard feelings on the Dodgers side. What may be more surprising is the fact that there where no hit batsman in the game.

In the end the Dodgers used a 5-run 5th inning to put the game away winning 5-2. This is just a short two game series and you have to wonder if we’ll see some more inside pitches from the Dodgers staff tonight.

Have you been listening to the Sports Time Radio podcast? The live version airs on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss that edition you can head over to TuneIn.com and listen any time you want.

Also feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: July 25, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Well after quite a delay the Major League Baseball season finally got underway Thursday evening with two games. The New York Yankees beat the defending World Series champion Washington Nationals 6-1 in a game that was shortened to 5 1/3rd innings due to rain. In the second game the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Francisco Giants 8-1; that game went all 9 innings.

Now if you’ve listened to the Sports Time Radio podcast or just kept up with the blogs right here you know that I’ve been hot and cold or maybe you’d call it here or there on if I was going to watch baseball this season. Like a lot of fans I was very frustrated with the way the negotiations went, but in the end I was right there to watch Max Scherzer throw the first pitch of the season to Aaron Hicks.

What I didn’t expect to happen was how bored I was by the Yankees/Nationals game. Honestly I don’t know what my issue with the game was, but luckily when my two local Chicago teams started the season yesterday I found myself enjoying those games much, much more. Maybe the problem was I’m not really invested that much into this shortened baseball season; so seeing the Yankees and the Nationals start the season didn’t get me excited for baseball. I guess I’ll have to play it by ear and see how it goes today as there will be quite a few games for me to watch, but only two of them will feature the teams in my area.

I should have access to a minimum of five games today. At 12:05 p.m. Fox will be showing it’s first game of the season featuring the Milwaukee Brewers at the Chicago Cubs. At 1:10 p.m. the Chicago White Sox will be hosting the Minnesota Twins. At 1:15 p.m. the MLB Network will be showing the Pittsburgh Pirates at the St. Louis Cardinals. Then at 3:10 p.m. Fox will be showing the San Francisco Giants at the Los Angeles Dodgers. The final game that I’ll have a chance to watch will be on Fox Sports 1 at 8:10 p.m. as the San Diego Padres host the Arizona Diamondbacks.

All the listed start times are for the Central time zone; which of course is where I live.

The listed pitching match ups for these games are as follows. Corbin Burnes starts for Milwaukee, Yu Darvish starts for the Cubs. Randy Dobnak is starting for the Twins while Dallas Keuchel stats for the White Sox. Trevor Williams starts for the Pirates while Adam Wainwright starts for the Cardinals. San Francisco has yet to announce their starting pitcher for todays game, but the Dodgers listed start is Alex Wood. In the last televised game in my area the Diamondbacks are starting Robbie Ray while the Padres are going with Dinelson Lamet.

There are your games and your starting pitchers for the televised games; so what I want to know from you is; what are your viewing habits going to be today? The only game you won’t be getting would be the White Sox/Twins game unless you live in that viewing area and if not it would be replaced by your local teams broadcast. Are you planning on watching one game? Or will you watch two games? Is it possible that you’ll watch three or even four games? Or are you just planning on skipping all of the baseball games today?

What I’d also be interested in knowing from you is; what was your highlight from opening day?

As for me I’m not sure if you would call it a highlight, but the thing that I enjoyed the most was watch Kyle Hendricks of the Cubs pitch a complete game shutout against the Brewers. With all the talk coming into this season I wasn’t expecting to see a pitcher throw a complete game in all of the 60 games each team was playing and here Hendricks throws one in the Cub home opener.

Hendricks was allowed to go 9 innings because he kept his pitch count down. Hendricks threw just 103 pitches in his complete game shutout with 74 of them being for strikes. He struck out nine while giving up just three hits. Interestingly all three of Milwaukee’s hits where by Orlando Arcia who was hitting 9th for the Brewers. The 1 through 8 hitters in Milwaukee’s line up went 0 for 27 against Hendricks.

To be fair Hendricks wasn’t the only opening day starter to register a complete game, but he was the only one that went 9 innings. In Thursday nights game Max Scherzer and Gerrit Cole get credit for a complete games. Since the game was rained shorten and they where the only two pitcher to appear for their teams it goes down as a complete game for each pitcher and while Scherzer did strikeout 11 and Cole gave up just 1 hit neither outing was as impressive as Hendricks was.

I wanted to leave baseball for a story that’s been confusing me for the better part of a week now; Antonio Brown.

Brown had been working out with Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and there was some talk that Seattle might be interested in signing him. Then kind of out of the blue Brown more or less said that he was retiring from football. Then just two days later Brown backtracked on his retirement and then went on to blame to NFL for holding up his career.

In case you don’t remember the NFL is investigating Brown for about sexual assault and rape allegations. That means Brown is head for a suspension or possible a spot on the Commissioner’s Exempt List. Of course Brown would have to be signed by a team before he could serve out any suspension. Even with this hanging over his head there are multiple teams that have shown some interest in possibly signing Brown.

Brown played in just 1 game last season with the New England Patriots even though he signed a big money deal with the Oakland raiders during the off season. I don’t think we need to rehash all the incidents he had with them before being released. He did catch 4 passes and score a touchdown in his one game with New England last season.

If your favorite NFL team was desperate for a wide receiver would you like to see them sign Brown? He is very talented, but he appears to bring a lot of baggage with him.

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you do miss the podcast live all you have to do is head over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want.

Feel free to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

 

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: July 22, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Well sports fans we’re right on the brink of getting all four major sports back. NFL training camps open tomorrow, the NBA and the NHL are just about a week and a half away from restarting their seasons, but most importantly starting tomorrow we’re going to get baseball games that count.

Baseball gets rolling with two showcase games tomorrow. Opening the season the defending World Series champion Washington Nationals host the New York Yankees. While the nightcap features old rivals as the Los Angeles Dodgers host the San Francisco Giants.

Both games will be shown on ESPN. The Nationals/Yankees games has a scheduled start time of 6:00p.m. While the Dodgers/Giants game has a scheduled start time of 9:00 p.m. Both start times are for the Central time zone; which is the time zone I live in.

Now there has been some questions about how much starting pitchers will impact these games right out of the gate and we should get an idea tomorrow how teams might handle their starters. Three of the games top four starter pitchers will take the rubber tomorrow. Max Scherzer makes the start for Washington The Yankees will counter with their big free agent signing Gerrit Cole. The Dodgers are going with Clayton Kershaw as their opening day starter and he’ll face off against Johnny Cueto; who’s getting the opening day start for San Francisco.

You have to wonder if these pitchers will be on a pitch count or if they’ll be allowed to work as long as they can. Out of the four opening day starters Cueto may be the one with the most questions since he’s returning from Tommy John surgery. Cueto did make 4 starts last season, but totaled just 16 innings and posted an E.R.A. of 5.06. My guess is that he’ll be on the shortest leash of the four opening day starters, but you never know what a team might have planned.

What would you consider to be a good start for these starters? Do you think it’s possible that we’ll get a “quality start” out of any of these opening day starters? The definition of a quality start is 6 innings pitched while permitting no more than 3 earned runs. Going 6 innings might be too much to ask out of even these big name pitchers to start this odd season.

After opening the season with two games on Thursday the rest of the league get started on Friday. The Dodgers and Giants will play their second game of the season on Friday, but the Yankees and the Nationals get Friday off.

With just the start of the baseball season a day away; how are you feeling about baseball?

I’ve been back and forth about this shortened 60 game season, but we had our fantasy drafts this past weekend and that helped me start to look forward to baseball coming back. When the first announced that this was the format they where gong with I was less than interested in baseballs return and was convinced that I wouldn’t watch an inning.

My stance has softened on that as the start of the season has gotten closer, but I do have some concerns. I think my biggest issue is; are we going to get spring training baseball to start off with? With expanded roster to start the season and the designated hitter being universal managers are going to have a lot of flexibility. Will we see a lot of situation substitutions? Also if starting pitchers aren’t going to be going deep into games to start the season; how many pitching changes will there be?

Now besides the DH becoming universal and the expanded rosters to start the season there are a few other new rules this season.

We have the three batters minimum for relievers. Instead of teams being able to match up pitchers to hitters this season when a pitcher comes out of the bullpen he’ll have to face three batters. The only way they won’t face three batters will be because the inning came to an end or that reliever became ill or got injured.

Placing a runner on 2nd base in extra innings. This is easily the new rule I dislike the most, but in a shortened season like this Major League Baseball is trying to avoid marathon games; so starting in the 11th inning A baserunner will magically appear on nd to start the inning.

I didn’t remember hearing about this one, but there’s a wet rag rule. Apparently pitchers will be allowed to bring a wet rag with them to the mound. The pitcher will be allowed to use this rag to moisten his fingers instead of licking them. I’m not sure if this rule is just for this year do to the pandemic or if it’s something that will stay on the books.

There is also a no brawl rule for this season. Since MLB is going to try and have players, managers and coaches maintain social distancing it’s understandable why they wouldn’t want teams fighting. MLB has mentioned that the possible penalty for breaking the no brawl rule could be immediate ejection and subsequent discipline, including a possible fine and suspension.

What do you think of these rules? As I’ve mentioned I don’t like the runner being placed on 2nd bae rule, but I’m okay with the other changes.

I’m not a big fan of the DH being universal a I liked the differences between the two leagues, but remember the collective bargaining agreement expires after the 2021 season and there was a very good chance that the Major League Baseball Players Association was going to be asking for the DH to be added to the National League. Let’s face it with al of the complaining that the media does about pitchers hitting this was going to happen sooner or later. This way the media will have one less thing to cry about when it comes to baseball, but I’m sure they’ll still find plenty of other things to whine about.

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

You can also look me up on Twitter @Burketime