Archive for the ‘golf’ Category

How was your week

Posted: August 8, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, golf, NASCAR, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

For the second time this season NASCAR is going to have a doubleheader weekend. Now it’s not a baseball style doubleheader where both games are played on the same day. A doubleheader in NASCAR means that there’s a cup series race today and then another cup series race tomorrow. Both races are at the Michigan International Speedway. Today’s race is the FireKeepers Casino 400 while tomorrow’s race is the Consumer Energy 400.

NASCAR was the first sport to return during the Covid-19 outbreak and to make up for the missed races they’ve been having races on days that we’re not use to seeing them. While we’ve been getting the Sunday races like we’re use to there have also been races held on Wednesdays, Saturdays and then due to weather Monday.

NASCAR did have a doubleheader earlier in the season at Pocono Speedway the on June 27th and 28th. These two races where on the NASCAR schedule to be run as back to back even before the season was stopped do to the Covid-19 outbreak, but it was still interesting to watch.

At the Pocono Speedway doubleheader Kevin Harvick won the Saturday race while Denny Hamlin was victorious in the Sunday race.

With 6 races left until the playoffs start there are 10 drivers who have won a race and qualified for a playoff spot. Hamlin leads all drivers with 5 wins this season, but there are some names that we’re not always use to seeing in victory lane, but they’ve found a way to win a race this season and they’ll be in the playoffs.

Rookie Cole Cutster, Austin Dillion and Alex Bowman have found their way to victory lane and have taken one of the available playoff spots. Is it possible will see another driver or maybe two that we’re not use to seeing win a race find their way into the playoffs? Even of that doesn’t happen as of now there are only six playoff spots available for drivers to get into the playoffs on points. Could we see some of the drivers that we’re use to seeing in the playoffs not race for a title this season.

Heading into this weekend Aric Almirola, Kurt and Kyle Busch, Clint Bowyer, Matt DiBeneditto and William Bryon would make it into the playoffs on Points, but rookie Tyler Reddick is just  points out of a playoff spot. In his last season Jimmie Johnson finds himself 25 points out of a playoff spot. Now if NASCAR was simply going by points like they use to Austin Dillion would be holding on to the last playoffs spot and Cole Custer wouldn’t even be in the playoffs, but since they both have wins they’re in.

So who do you think wins this weekend in Michigan? Will we see a driver who’s already won a race get another win? Or will one of those drivers looking for a win this season get one?

In other NASCAR news it was announced on Thursday that Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) won’t be resigning Erik Jones. Jones has been the driver of the #20 car since joining in 2018.

Jones is just 24 years old and is in his fourth season in the cup series. Jones spent his first season in the cup series driving for the now defunct Furniture Row Racing before moving over to JGR. Those two racing teams had an alliance with each other and after his rookie season Jones took over the #20 car for JGR.

Jones won the Gander Truck series championship in 2015; which was his first season in that series. Jones was moved up to the Xfinity series for the 2016 season; he won four races in what turned out to be his only season in the Xfinity series. As a cup series rookie Jones finished 19th with five Top 5 finishes. In 2018 Jones picked up a win as well as picking up nine Top 5 finishes. Jones finished 15th in 2018. Last season Jones picked up another win and improved his Top 5 finishes with 10. Through 20 races this season Jones has five Top 5 finishes and is 19th in the points standings.

Jones 2018 win came at Daytona International Speedway while his win last season was at Darlington Raceway.

The Professional Golfers Association (of America) is holding the first “major” golf tournament of the season the PGA Championship at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco California.

Through two rounds Haotong Li is the leader at 8 under par. Behind Li there are six golfers tied at 6 under par. They are Justin Rose, Daniel Berger, Jason Day, Tommy Fleetwood, Brooks Koepka and Michael Lorenzo-Vera.

Tiger Woods is playing this weekend. He had a solid first round shooting two under par, but he had his issues yesterday shooting two over par. Woods did make the cut and is tied for 44th place heading into the 3rd round. Phil Mickelson also had his issues shooting to over par on Thursday, but bouncing back a little bit yesterday shooting one under par. Mickelson also made the cut and is tied for 60th place heading into today’s 3rd round.

Li is 25 years old and is ranked 114th in the world. Li has seven tour wins, but none have been on the PGA tour. He has two wins on the European Tour, two wins on the OneAsia Tour and three wins on the PGA Tour China. Li’s best finish in a PGA major tournament was when he tied for 16th at the 2018 U.S. Open.

I’m not sure how people if ay have Li hanging on through the final two rounds to win the PGA championship, but if you like to root for the underdog then you’ve got a golfer to cheer for. He’s got quite a few top golfers just two strokes behind him and it will be fun to see if Li can stay atop the leaderboard or if there someone on the course today who’s going to make a run.

Who do you think will win the PGA championship? Do you think Tiger Woods can comeback from eight strokes down and win?

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Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: April 15, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, golf, pro wrestling, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

With the Corona virus having just about everything shutdown most if not all sports fans are wondering when will get to watch sports again and which league will be the first to get back up and running. It looks like we might have some answers to our questions.

PGA Tour Officials are expected to announce this week that the season will resume on June 11th at the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth Texas. If this is the case the the PGA gets up and running their will be no fans in attendance at this tournament.

The Tour looks to follow health and safety guidelines put in place by government. Other early tournaments that where postponed also are expected to be played without spectators.

There was a memo sent out by the Tour late last week saying they where looking at returning at the Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, but the memo also said that the Tour was looking at options to  “preserve the maximum number of events we can while giving us more time as the crisis evolves.”

Now originally the RBC Canadian Open was scheduled to be played June 11th through the 14th, but that event ended up being cancelled; so the date became available. The Charles Schwab Challenge was originally scheduled to be played in May, but that wasn’t going to be possible. Luckily enough this date opened up and it looks like they’ll be able to play it that June weekend.

The PGA hasn’t played an event since March. The first round of The Players Championship was played before the event was cancelled and that was the last we saw of the PGA.

After the cancellation of The Players Championship their where more major tournaments either cancelled or moved for this upcoming PGA season.

First it was The Master’s that announced they where postponing their tournament until November. It was then announced that since the first time since 1945 The British Open would be cancelled. In the case of the Senior British Open the organizers have postponed the event and they hope to still be able to play it in the 2020 calendar year.

Here is a partial schedule released by Golf Digest:

▪ RBC Heritage: June 18-21

▪ Travelers Championship: June 25-28

▪ Rocket Mortgage Classic: July 2-5

▪ John Deere Classic: July 9-12

▪ The Memorial Tournament: July 16-19

▪ 3M Open: July 23-26

▪ WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational: July 29 – Aug. 2

If your a fan of golf or not it has to be looked at as a step in the right direction that will have some type of sporting event played. Of course with no fans in attendance it won’t seem the same, but at least will be able to watch it on live television and hope fully it won’t be long after this tournament that fans will be allowed to attend events again.

What are your thoughts on the PGA returning?

Did you watch the NBA’s H-O-R-S-E Challenge? I didn’t see any of the event, but I read that their where quite a few people that didn’t like the camera work for the event. If you did watch; please let me know what you thought.

Here are the results from the first round of the H-O-R-S-E challenge.

Group 1 saw Chauncey Billups defeat Trae Young and Mike Conley defeat Tamika Catchings.

Group 2 saw Zach LaVine defeat Paul Pierce and  Allie Quigley defeat Chris Paul.

It’s interesting that both Young and Paul where eliminated in the first round. They where the first two names announced for this event and a lot of people expected them to meet in the finals.

The semi-finals and the finals will be tomorrow night on ESPN starting at 8:00 p.m. cst. It appears as though there are two hours blocked off for this event.

It looks like the first match up will see will be Billups vs. Conley. That will of course be followed by LaVine vs. Quigley. The finals will feature the winners of these two contest and should appear shortly after the conclusion of the LaVine/Quigley match up.

Quigley was the biggest underdog heading into this contest at +1000. Billups was set at +800 while Conley is +450. LaVine should be the current favorite to win this competition as he was a +350 coming into the event.

It had to be difficult to put odds on this since it’s very much a game of chance and creativity. Most players should be able to hit the normal shots that would be taken in a game; so you have to come up with some innovative trick shots in this type of contest. I did see one highlight where Quigley took a page out of Pete Maravich’s play book and took and made a shot while she was sitting down. Hopefully will see more creative shots like this in the second round and the finals.

Are you planning on watching the second round and the H-O-R-S-E finals tomorrow? If you read this before it takes place let me know who you think is going to win.

I was surprised to hear that the state of Florida has deemed that the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) is considered essential. I’m not sure how this decision was made, but it will allow the WWE to continue to put on live events on Monday’s, Wednesday’s and Friday nights. Of course there are no fans in attendance at these events, but there are a number of wrestlers, backstage employees and television crew on site. There was one report that a WWE on-air talent tested positive for the Corona virus, but there was no name released. Hopefully that will be the only case that the WWE will have to deal with as they continue to produce their product.

I do wonder if wrestlers where presented with the option of not participating in these events due to the Corona virus. We do know that one of the WWE’s top star Roman Reigns didn’t compete at Wrestlemania due to the Corona virus and it’s being reported that he won’t return to the WWE until the outbreak is over. Reigns has had two battles with leukemia and would be considered high risk; so it makes perfect sense for him to step away for a while.

Do you watch WWE? If so how do you like these shows with no fans in attendance?

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How was your week

Posted: July 20, 2019 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, golf, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Now I know I’ve mentioned this here before, but my love of sports developed through my father. As a young child he would haul his black and white television into our backyard and I would run around while he watched sports on that television.

Now the majority if the time what was on that little black and white television was baseball, but remember this was a time when we could only watch Chicago Cubs or Chicago White Sox games.

Once those games ended or if they weren’t on until later in the day their where other sports on that we’d watch.

If you’re old enough you’ll remember the Wide World of Sports and their tag line the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat. The defeat part came with a ski jumper crashing at the end of the ramp and tumbling to the ground. The other networks had shows to compete with this. One was called the Sports Spectacular, but I’m drawing a blank on what the third show was called.

These shows allowed me the opportunity to watch sports that I would’ve never watched. Boxing was a big feature on a lot of these shows, but they also showed many, many other types of sports. I can remember seeing track and field events, different skiing events as well as speed skating. It was one of these shows where I first saw the Harlem Globetrotters.

These types of shows helped me develop an interest no mater how small it was in other sports besides baseball, football, basketball and hockey. Not only did it help me develop an interest in these sports, but it also made me want to try them. Now there where different varieties of success with these different sports and there where I few I couldn’t try at all due to the cost of them.

One of the sports I was exposed to and got out try was golf and while I never got very good at it I always did enjoy playing it. I have thrown my fair share of clubs, but luckily I never broke one. Getting upset seems to be one of the rites of passage when playing golf. There where also quite a few rounds when I understood what Mark Twain meant when he said “golf is a good walk spoiled”. I haven’t had the chance to play a round in a long time and due to the various injuries I’ve had through the years I don’t even think I could swing a club, but I do still watch golf on television from time to time.

I don’t watch as much golf as I use to. My father was the driving force behind me watching golf when I was younger and now there are a lot more sports on to watch. I do however tune in every now and then especially when they’re playing a major tournament.

That’s the case this week as The Open Championship is being played this weekend at Portrush Golf Club in County Antrim, Northern Ireland.

The 3rd round of the tournament is actually going on as I’m writing this. J.B. Holmes and Shane Lowry are tie for the lead at -8 while Tommy Fleetwood and Lee Westwood find themselves one stroke back at -7. It’s still a little over an hour before any of these golfers will tee off for their 3rd round.

I am wondering if the golfers that missed the cut for The Open Championship are going to be talked about more than the golfer that wins The Open Championship.

Three of he biggest names in golf missed the cut and won’t be playing this weekend in Northern Ireland. Phil Mickelson (+8), Tiger Woods (+6) and Rory McIlroy (+2) didn’t make the cut for The Open Championship.

With these three players out of the tournament this weekend will this stop you from watching it? Unfortunately I believe that these three big name players missing the cut will dissuade the casual  golf fan from checking things out, but I’ll still flip over to it from time to time and see how it’s going. With the tournament being shown live there isn’t any other sporting event on that’s live and I like that; so I’ll be watching even without Tiger, Rory and Phil.

There hasn’t been a perfect game thrown in Major League Baseball since Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners threw one on August 15th 2012 against the Tampa Bay Rays. Well last night another Mariners pitcher took a perfect game into the 9th inning.

Seattle starter Mike Leake may have been making his last start in a Mariners uniform as his name has been mentioned quite a bit in trade talks. If this was Leake’s last start for the Mariners he will have left them with something to remember.

Last night Leake was pitching against the Los Angeles Angels. Through 8 innings Leake was perfect as no Angels player had reached base either by walk, hit or error. The Mariners had staked Leake to a 10-0 lead heading into the bottom of the 9th; so the only thing left to be decided was if there would be a perfect game.

Angels rookie 2nd baseman Luis Rengifo was leading of the 9th inning. Rengifo fouled off the first pitch. Leake missed outside with the second pitch to make the count 1-1. On the third pitch of the at bat Rengifo broke up the perfect game and the no-hitter with a single to rightfield.

In a lot of these cases as soon as the pitcher loses a bid like this he is immediately removed from the game, but Leake was allowed to stay in. It took him a hitter to get himself righted again as Kevan Smith walked following Rengifo’s single. With runners on 1st and 2nd a ground out for the 1st out of the inning moved them up to 2nd and 3rd, but that’s where Leake left them. There was a pop up to 2nd base for the second out and Leake struck out Mike Trout to end the game.

Leake threw 98 pitches in his what ended up being a complete game one hitter. He had just the one walk in the 9th inning and he struck out 6 in the game. With the win Leake improved to 8-8 this season and his ERA dropped to 4.27.

With the trade deadline just 11 days away; do you think this was Leake’s last start with the Mariners?

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How was your week

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

FYI all the tee times where in Eastern Standard Time.

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The Golden State Warriors won 73 regular season games and there was a lot of talk about this was the best team ever. This 73 win team made it to the NBA Finals for the second season in a row. Now the issue becomes is this the best team ever or is this the best regular season team ever since they lost Game 7 and the NBA Championship 93-89 to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday. The record Golden State broke belonged to the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls, but that Bulls team won the title. The next year the Bulls won 69 games to tie for the second most wins in a season at the time with 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers. Both of those 69 win team won the title. I guess the question is; what does a 73 win regular season mean when you don;t win the NBA title. The record is impressive in this NBA day and age where players are always looking to take regular season games off and not to mention staying healthy. Did setting the wins record in the regular season hurt Golden State in the playoffs. To be fair the NBA did everything in it’s power to make sure there was a Game 7. The NBA and the referees did quite a bit to stack the deck against the Warriors in Games 5 and 6, but Game 7 appeared to be on the up and up and they didn’t win. Without the NBA title on their resume where does this Golden State team rank in NBA history. Would they make it into the Top 5 or do they make the Top 10. Is there even a possibility that they’re outside the Top 10 because they didn’t win the title. Even if the Warriors had won the NBA title there where people who thought that the 1995-96 Bulls team led by the greatest player of all time Michael Jordan was still a better team. By not winning the championship Golden State made it easier for anyone and everyone who want to compare these teams to drop them down the list. If you’re making your list; where do you have this Golden State team on it?

While we’re talking about the Warriors they made some noise yesterday about who they might target in free agency. NBA free agency officially starts July 1st and there are reports that Golden State’s number one target is Kevin Durant. Now of course teams always need a back up plan and yesterday the Warriors back up plan may have opted out of his contract. While he is 38 wouldn’t Dirk Nowitzki fit nicely into the scheme that Golden State runs.  Nowitzki has spent his entire 18 year NBA career with the Dallas Mavericks, but could he leave Dallas for a shot at another NBA title with Golden State. The Mavericks won the NBA championship in 2010-11 season and Nowitzki was voted finals M.V.P. Nowitzki won the league M.V.P. in 2007; he’s a 13 time All-Star and has been named to the All-NBA team 12 times all with the Mavericks. Nowitzki is the Mavericks all time leading scorer and is 6th in NBA history. Nowitzki is also the Mavericks all-time leader in games,  rebounds, field goals, three-point field goals and free throws. I think it would be tough for Nowitzki to leave Dallas, but is the allure of another championship enough for him to sign with Golden State.

While we’re on free agency Dwight Howard declined the $23.1 million dollar option in his contract and come July 1st will be a free agent. Now guys like LeBron James and Dwayne Wade will opt out of their contracts and sign max deals with their respective teams. With the increase of the salary cap and the influx of money do to the new television agreement there will be a lot of players opting out of there deals on a yearly basis to get bigger and bigger contracts. This move might make sense for a lot of those players, but is it the right move for Howard. Will the Houston Rockets or any other NBA team pay him more than the $23.1 million he just opted out of. Last season Howard’s scoring average (13.7 points per game) reached it’s lowest since his (12.0 points per game) in his rookie season. Howard is still a solid rebounder and shot blocker, but he’s also still a terrible free throw shooter. With the way the NBA game has changed it’s hard to see a team paying Howard upwards of $20 million, but it does only take one team to see something in Howard or have a use for him. Would you want your favorite team to sign Howard with the price tag of over $20 million.

The NBA draft is tomorrow and the Philadelphia 76ers have the 1st pick. Word has leaked out that the 76ers plan on selecting LSU forward Ben Simmons with that 1st pick. There was some talk that Simmons didn’t want to play for Philadelphia and would prefer to be drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers with the 2nd pick. That talk seems to have passed as Simmons had his first workout for an NBA team and it was the 76ers. With Simmons now appearing to be a lock for the #1 pick this leaves the Lakers drafting Duke forward Brandon Ingram. It’s been reported over and over that Simmons and Ingram are clearly the Top 2 players in this draft. The Boston Celtics have the 3rd pick and they’ve dangled it in front of the Chicago Bulls in a deal for Jimmy Butler. Boston is a young team and adding a veteran for this pick would be a good move, but if they hang onto it I’m not sure who they’d draft. Could it be California forward Jaylen Brown, Washington forward Marquese Chriss or possible Croatian forward Dragan Bender. It pretty much seems that after Simmons and Ingram come off the draft board it’s kind of up for grabs on who goes next.

I was wondering if or when we’d start hear Olympians bow out of the Rio de Janeiro games because of the Zika virus. World’s #4 ranked golfer Rory McIlroy has decided not to compete at this summer’s Olympics in Rio due to fears about the Zika virus. McIlroy joins a list including Adam Scott, Louis Oosthuizen, Charl Schwartzel, Marc Leishman and Vijay Singh having already said they will not travel to Brazil; while world #6 ranked golfer Rickie Fowler has also cast doubt on his participation. The situation is a difficult one for golf as it  returns to the Olympics for the first time since 1904. Concerns about the Zika virus, which has been linked to birth defects, have cast a shadow over Rio 2016, but the International Olympic Committee, with guidance from the World Health Organisation, has resisted calls for the Games to be moved or postponed.

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The Chicago Cubs have won the first two games in their four game series against the Washington Nationals to improve their record to a Major League best 22-6. When the season was getting under way most if not all of the media expected the Cubs to be good and they haven’t disappointed. At first the Cubs winning was viewed as nothing but positive since it’s the Cubs and everyone knows the story. No World Series win since 1908. Then as odd as it might seem as the Cubs continued to win these early season games the media started to question if the Cubs where that good or if it was there schedule that has been allowing them to put up this type of record; so this four game series against the Nationals was seen as a big test for the Cubs.

The Cubs opened the 2016 season with an odd 2-game series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Behind the starting pitching of Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester the Angels didn’t score in either game and the Cubs started off the season 2-0. The Angels are currently 13-16 and weren’t the challenge the media thought they’d be for the Cubs. The Cubs stayed out West for a 4-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Diamondbacks looked to have won the off season, but that didn’t translate into this series as the Cubs took 3 of 4. Arizona is currently 13-18 and in last place in the National League West; so they apparently weren’t the match up the experts where looking for the Cubs to face either. After their  trip out West, the Cubs came home for their home opener and a 3-game series against the Cincinnati Reds, which the Cubs swept. While it’s difficult to sweep a team this wasn’t much of a surprise to anyone. The Reds did get of to a good start to the season, but are now 13-17. After the Reds, the Colorado Rockies came to Chicago for a 3-game series and the Cubs hit their first speed bump of the season as the Rockies took 2 of 3 in this series. Colorado is one game under .500 at 14-15, but the N.L. West is so close that they’re just one game of of 1st place. After losing there first series of the year the Cubs went back on the road to face there rivals the St. Louis Cardinals in a 3-game series. This was looked at as the Cubs first test of the season and they appeared to pass as they took 2 of 3 games in St. Louis. The Cardinals have struggled a little bit and since they’re just .500 at 15-15 this series win wasn’t good enough for the Cubs. The Cubs then went to Cincinnati for a 4-game series against the Reds; which they where expected to win and they took 3 of the 4 games. It was back to Chicago for the Cubs and another N.L. Central match up; this time against the Milwaukee Brewers. Because of rain the series ended up being just 2 games and the Cubs won both. This was another expected outcome as the Brewers are in rebuild mode. Milwaukee is 11-18 and currently in last place in the N.L. Central. The Atlanta Braves where the next team on the schedule as they came to Chicago for a 3-game series, but more rain allowed just 2 games to be played and the teams split the shortened series. Was this the chink in the Cubs armor experts where looking for? The Braves are also rebuilding and have the worst record in baseball right now at 7-21, but look out they won a game in Chicago. The Cubs headed back out on the road and jumped back into N.L. Central play as they faced the Pittsburgh Pirates in a 3-game series. This was suppose to be another test for the Cubs as the Pirates where and still are in 2nd place in the N.L. Central. This appears to be another test the Cubs passed as they swept the Pirates. Pittsburgh is 16-13 on the season. This brings us to where we are now with the Cubs facing the Nationals.

You’ve seen the schedule the Cubs have played and are they just a creation of the teams they faced or are they a serious contender. I hope you’re leaning towards contender and you’re not looking to make excuses for the tams success. I’ve also been trying to figure out how the schedule is the Cubs fault. I believe the schedule was set by Major League Baseball  and the Cubs or any other team don’t have anything to do with the scheduling of games. Will the Cubs continue to win games at a clip of .786 like they are now; probably not. While the Cubs are on a 5-game winning streak right now and they haven’t lost back to back games there will probably be some times when they lose multiple games in a row. Will that be the test the media needs, to see how they bounce back from a losing streak or is it something else. While it’s still too early in the season to hand the Cubs the World Series trophy they look like a team that might be in the mix for it at the end of the season.


The Sprint Cup series is going racing tonight in the GoBowling 400 at Kansas Speedway. Chris Olmstead usually joins the Sports Time Radio podcast on Sunday mornings to preview the race and give his Top 3 drives he thinks has h the best chance to end up in victory lane. Well with the race being on Saturday night Chris has sent us his picks for tonight’s race. Chris is going with Kevin Harvick; who’s starting 26th, Chase Elliott who’s starting 13th and Kyle Busch who’s starting 6th. Martin Truex Jr. took the pole with an average speed of 190.921 miles per hour. Matt Kenseth starts 2nd with his teammate Denny Hamlin starting 3rd. Kurt Busch will start the race 4th and last weeks winner Brad Keslowski rounds out the Top 5 starting 5th. Hopefully Chris will be able to join The Big Jack and Mr. Fantasy on Sports Time Radio tomorrow (Sunday) to review the race.


Zac Blair is a professional golfer and yesterday he was disqualified from the Wells Fargo Championship on Friday for using a bent putter. Now how did Blair’s putter get bent? Well Blair missed a putt on the 5th hole of his round on Friday and proceeded to hit himself in the head with his putter and bent it. Everything would’ve been fine if Blair hadn’t use the putter, but Rule 4-3b states that you can’t use a non-conforming club and by bending his club in anger Blair had a non-conforming club. Blair could have tapped in with a wedge and played the rest of the round without a putter. The Rules of Golf allow you to replace a damaged club during a round but not if the damage was done in anger. Blair  approached a rules official on the sixth tee and explained the situation, which resulted in disqualification. Blair was 4 over par at the time and in danger of missing the 36-hole cut. In case you’re wondering Andrew Loupe is leading the tournament at -8 going into Saturday’s round.

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After last night I’m sure a lot of people are asking, who is Ross Stripling? As you know by now Stripling is a pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers who had a no-hitter against the San Francisco Giants last night for 7 1/3rd innings, but was removed from the game because he was on a pitch count. Stripling is 26 years old and played college baseball at Texas A&M. He was originally drafted in the 9th round of 2011 amateur draft by the Colorado Rockies. Stripling didn’t sign with the Rockies and after spending another season in college the Dodgers selected him in the 5th round of the 2012 amateur draft. Stripling is a right handed pitcher who has spent the last 3 seasons working his way through the Dodgers minor league system. Stripling has made 48 minor league starts and has appeared in 55 minor league games before this season. His minor league record was 12-10 with an ERA of 2.83 over 235 1/3rd innings. He had 1 complete game in the minors and also recorded 1 save. The Dodgers have had their share of injuries to starting pitchers and they where looking for a 5th starter to open the season with. Stripling was able to land that 5th starter spot with his spring training performances. Overall this spring Stripling made just 1 start, but appeared in 4 games covering 11 innings overall this spring. Stripling was 1-1 with a 4.09 ERA but did average a strikeout an inning during spring training. The Dodgers saw enough in Stripling to give him the 5th starters job and for 7 1/3rd innings last night it paid off. While it was a great outing for Stripling sadly he ended up with a no decision and the Dodgers ended up with a loss in extra innings last night. Stripling’s official line was 7 1/3 rd innings 0 hits, 1 run allowed, 4 walks and 4 strikeouts. The Dodgers gave Stripling a 2-run lead in the 5th inning as A,J, Ellis and Corey Seager each singled in the inning to drive in runs. After Stripling walked Angel Pagan Dodgers manager Dave Roberts went to the bullpen for Chris Hatcher. The first Giants batter Hatcher faced was catcher Trevor Brown who greeted him with a 2-run home run to tie the game at 2-2. The game stayed tied at 2 into the bottom of the 10th inning. Joe Blanton came out of the Dodgers bullpen to pitch the 10th inning. Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford was the first batter Blanton faced and Crawford hit the 2nd pitch he saw over the left field fence for a walk off home run. Sadly Stripling’s great outing went for nothing as the Giants ended up taking Game 1 of the series 3-2 in 10 innings. The teams meet again on Saturday and it will be  it will be Clayton Kershaw against Madison Bumgarner in their first match up of 2016. The ace lefties are each 1-0 in 2016 and matched up four times in 2015. This will be the eighth overall meeting between them.

The Chicago Cubs lost their first game of the 2016 season last night 3-2 to the Arizona Diamondbacks, but really the first loss this season for the Cubs happen before the game started when it was announced that outfielder Kyle Schwarber will miss the entire 2016 season with a knee injury. Schwarber collided with centerfielder Dexter Fowler in Thursday night 14-6 victory as they where going for a fly ball in the left centerfield gap. Schwarber had to be carted off the field and an MRI showed that Schwarber suffered full tears to the ACL and LCL in his left knee. Schwarber also suffered a severely sprained ankle in the collision with Fowler.  Schwarber is expected to have surgery in one to three weeks and will remain at the Cubs’ spring training facility in Mesa, Arizona, until he is ready to travel back to Chicago. The Cubs hope that Schwarber can return for spring training next year, but with damage to two ligaments, they aren’t sure of the timetable. Munenori Kawasaki will be recalled from Triple-A Iowa to take Schwarber’s roster spot.Jorge Soler played left field in Friday nights game at Arizona. The Cubs have some depth and you may see Tommy La Stella get some playing time in Schwarber’s place, with third baseman Kris Bryant being another option in left field. The Cubs also have Matt Szczur to insert into the outfield rotation. Schwarber was a catcher by trade and is still in the learning process in leftfield. While the injury will take playing time away from Schwarber he’ll have the opportunity to watch and learn the position this season. If he’s able to return for the start of the 2017 season he may end up being a better defensive outfielder.


We don’t talk a lot of golf on the Sports Time Radio podcasts, but this is Master’s weekend and I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least look at who’s leading the tournament going into today’s round. Defending champion Jordan Spieth is leading the tournament at -4 under par. Spieth has tied Arnold Palmer’s record by being in the lead at the Master’s for 6 consecutive rounds. Rory McIlroy is one shot behind at -3 under. Danny Lee and Scott Piercy are tied at -2 under and then there are three golfers; Brandt Snedeker, Soren Kjeldsen and Hideki Matsuyama tied at -1 under. Spieth is trying to be the first golfer to repeat as Master’s champion since Tiger Woods won back to back in 2001 and 2002.


The NASCAR car Sprint cup series takes the track tonight (Saturday) at Texas Motor Speedway for the Duck Commander 500. Carl Edwards took the pole with a s qualifying speed of 194.609. Joey Logano is starting 2nd with Martin Truex Jr. 3rd. Chase Elliot (4th) and Rickey Stenhouse Jr. (5th) round out the Top 5. None of these five drivers have a win; so they’ll be looking to use there good starting spot to get that win and lock themselves into the Chase. Chris Olmstead from will join the Sports Time Radio podcast on Sunday morning as usual, but instead of his normal preview he’ll do a review of tonight’s race. As I’m writing this I don’t have Chris’ picks for his three drivers to look for in victory lane. If I can get them before the race starts maybe I’ll be able to tweet them out and let you know who he’s going with. 

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The American League beat the National League 6-3 in the All-Star game last night. The win for the American League means that the team that represents them in the World Series will have home field advantage. Home field advantage in the World Series is one of the things that makes baseball’s All-Star game different than any other sport. Baseball has the one All-Star game that is similar to what actually happens during a regular season game. That’s the one reason I’ll watch the Baseball All-Star game over the other three sports NFL, NHL, NBA various All-Star games. They will actually play defense in baseball’s All-Star game and if you’ve seen the other sports All-Star games you know that defense is the last thing on anyone’s mind. Now there are always complaints about the fan voting or who should’ve been selected for the team, but when the game is on the field it’s an actual baseball game not a facade of itself.

Now you know that the network executives at Fox where doing cartwheels when Mike Trout led the game off for the American league by hitting a home run. While Trout is the best player in baseball right now by hitting that home run he allowed the broadcasters to bring his name up all night without having to find a reason to. You also had to know that as soon as Trout hit that lead off home run there was nothing any other player could do to win the MVP.  The home run was Trout’s only hit in 4 at bats during the game. He did walk and score another run later in the game. While the MVP pretty much has to come off the winning team.  You’d think Trout was a good of a choice as any, but I really thought that Prince Fielder deserved the award more. Lorenzo Cain was the only player in the game to get more than 1 hit and he also stole a base, but I don’t think he got much consideration for MVP. The most impressive player might’ve been Wade Davis the Kansas City Royals relief pitcher. Davis pitched the 7th inning for the American League and struck out 2, but once he gave up a hit you knew they wouldn’t consider him for MVP.  While I’m not sure that Trout should’ve won MVP no one else stood out enough for anyone to jump up and down about it and scream. Trout becaomes the first player to win the MVP award in back to back All-Star games.

How did your favorite player do last night? Locally for us Anthony Rizzo was 0-2 and Kris Bryant was 0-1 with a walk. Besides Trout’s lead off home run there where 5 other extra base hits. Cain and Manny Machado doubled for the American League and Brian Dozier homered in the 8th inning. On the National League side Ryan Braun tripled in the bottom of the 9th and Andrew McCutchen homered in the 6th inning. On the mound Jacob deGrom is getting rave reviews for his inning of work. deGrom pitched the 6th inning and struck out all 3 batters he faced. Aroldis Chapman of the host team Cincinnati reds also struck out all 3 batters he faced pitching the top of the 9th inning for the National League. National League pitchers totaled 15 strikeouts in the game while the American League pitchers stuck out 9. There were only 13 hits in the game and Clayton Kershaw was the pitcher who gave up the most with 3. Kershaw also gave up 2 runs and took the lost for the National League. David Price worked the right inning for the American League and picked up the win.

As it gets closer and closer to the NFL season there are 4 top players who haven’t signed their franchise tender. Those 4 players are Dez Bryant of the Dallas Cowboys, Demaryius Thomas of the Denver Broncos, Justin Houston of the Kansas City Chiefs and Jason Pierre-Paul of the New York Giants. Most of the talk has been about Bryant and if he’ll skip mini camp or sit out regular season games if he doesn’t get a long term deal. Now these 4 players have until today to sign a contract or else they have to play for whatever the franchise dollar amount is for their position. It’s been reported that Thomas and the Denver Broncos have had some contract talks, but Thomas wants more money than the highest paid receiver in the NFL Calvin Johnson. You have to think that Thomas and his agent realize they have to cash in before Peyton manning retires and someone else is quarterbacking the Broncos. The Kansas City Chiefs and Houston were expected to meet on Tuesday, but they’ll have to move quickly if they want to get a deal done. It’s been reported that there hasn’t been any negotiation between the sides lately. There seems to be some optimism about Houston getting a long-term deal as Kansas City has made it clear they’d like Houston to be a Chief for a long time. Now Pierre-Paul and the New York Giants are in a unique situation and  after Pierre-Paul suffered injuries from fireworks that included having his right index finger amputated. Don’t forget the fiasco that occurred when the Giants personnel went to visit Pierre-Paul and weren’t allowed to see him. The franchise tag for Pierre-Paul would be $14.8 million, but there have been some reports that the two sides are discussing a lower dollar amount. Will any of these 4 players get the long term deal they want before the deadline. If they don;t get that long term deal will they skip mini camp or would they actually sit out one or more regular season games to get that deal. How much would it affect these 4 players teams if they did decide to sit out during the regular season?

Now we don’t talk much golf if any on the podcast, but the British Open starts tomorrow at The Old Course at St. Andrews. Jordan Spieth has won the first 2 majors of the season and is the odds on favorite to win the British Open. Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler and Justin Rose players with good odds to win this week. I’m not going to pretend that I know anything at all about golf except for the fact that I play the game poorly, but I’d like to see Spieth win and continue to chase the grand slam.

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