Archive for the ‘sports’ Category

How was your week?

Posted: February 5, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

I guess the best way to look at this if you’re a fan of the National Football League is while there’s no actual football game today there are football like activities to watch.

While we have to wait a week until the Super Bowl is played the NFL is running out its new version of the Pro Bowl. The Pro Bowl festivities as I guess you’d call them started on Thursday as they had organized skill challenges. Now I’m going to be completely honest with you, I didn’t watch any of these skills challenges that the NFL had starting back on Thursday. I just wasn’t really interested in them just like I have no interest in what is now the actual Pro Bowl game.

I’m sure you know by now that the Pro Bowl game is now a flag football game. I understand why the NFL had to make these changes. When you have professional football players who make millions of dollars playing the sport the last thing that anyone wants to have happen would be for one of them to get seriously injured in a game that means absolutely nothing. The last few years the game has more or less been a flag football game anyway as there was no real hitting that took place in it.

What’s always come as a surprise to me is that the Pro Bowl has always done well in the television ratings. Now to be fair those ratings have declined the last few years and I’m sure that was part of the reason that the NFL looked for ways to change the game.

I used to watch the Pro Bowl pretty much every season because it was the last chance to see the best players on the non-playoff teams play in a game. You also have to remember that I live in the Chicago area and growing up Bears playoff appearances were few and far between, so I liked to watch those guys play one more time before their off season started.

Even with the new Pro Bowl format it’s clear that not all of today’s players have any interest in playing in it. There were still multiple players that asked out of the game due to injury. In one of the funnier cases Buffalo Bills quarterback josh Allen said he couldn’t play in the game because of an injury. Interestingly Allen played in the Pebble-Beach Pro-Am golf tournament this weekend. Of course, it’s Allen’s choice weather he wants to play or not, I just thought it was funny that he ended up in a golf tournament this weekend.

Now if you’re interested in checking out this new version of the Pro Bowl it’s on ABC, ESPN and ESPN plus. The game has a scheduled start time of 2:00 p.m.

Now the National Hockey League just also happens to have reached the All-Star break in their season. Now I actually would’ve watched the NHL Skills competition and I would’ve checked out some of the game, but I somehow forgot that everything was this weekend.

In the semi-final games the Central division beat the Pacific division 6-4 while the Atlantic division won their semi-final match up against the Metro division 10-6. Then in the finals the Atlantic division got the win over the Central division. 7-5.

Mathew Tkachuk of the Florida Panthers was named the All-Star game Most Valuable Player. Tkachuk had a goal and an assist in the Atlantic divisions 7-5 victory in the finals.

Now unlike a lot of other professional sports specifically the National Basketball Association the NHL doesn’t give their players too many days off after the All-Star game. There are six games on the NHL schedule for Monday, so it’s right back to work for a few teams.

If you haven’t been keeping up with the NHL, you might be a little bit surprised to find out that the Boston Bruins have been the best team in the league heading into the All-Star break.

The Bruins have racked up 39 wins which is five better than anyone else in the league and Boston has also posted a league leading 83 points. The Bruins currently lead the Easten conference and the Atlantic division by 13 points.

Currently the Eastern conference has the four teams with the highest point totals in the NHL. The Bruins is on top with their 83 points. Boston is followed by Carolina Hurricanes who have 76 points. Then the Toronto Maple Leafs are 3rd with 70 points while the New Jersey Devils have the 4th highest total with 68 points. Over in the Western conference the Dallas Stars have the highest point total, but they trail the Bruins, Hurricanes, Maple Leafs and Devils with 66 points.

Of course, it’s been proven over and over again in the NHL that the team or teams that end up with the highest regular season point totals don’t always win the Stanley Cup. The NHL may be the only one of the four major professional sports where the lowest seeded playoff team actually has a shot at winning the title.

Now’s the time that I turn things over to you. Did you watch any of the NFL or NHL skills challenges? Did you watch any or all of the NHL All-Star games? And finally, are you planning on watching the Pro Bowl this afternoon?

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

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Let’s call it Wednesday!

Posted: February 1, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Between the National Basketball Association and the National Football League there’s been quite a bit of discussion about officiating.

This is actually something I have experience in since I’ve coached Baseball, Basketball and football at the youth level and have dealt with referees and umpires. I have also umpired some baseball games as well, so I have some experience on that side as well. I also have three very close friends that have been Illinois high school basketball referees for over 20 years now.

I’ve had people tell me that the officiating is much worse now than it used to be at all levels of sports, but I’m not sure that’s the case. You have to wonder if the fact that technology has improved so much that we’re seeing things that have always been there and we didn’t notice before.

Now any time you have a human being doing something there’s always going to be human error involved there’s just no way around that. None of us are perfect and every referee or umpire is going to miss a call or two from time to time. The best you can really hope for is that the game is called evenly for both teams.

I read a report yesterday on how referees and umpires are quitting right and left, and I can’t say I’m surprised by that. Now the reason their quitting is one that should be controlled, but it’s not. We’re losing these referees and umpires because of the way the parents are treating them.

Now I have no issue at all with a parent being upset with a call that an official made and voicing their opinion while the game is going on, but some of these parents take it way too far. Parents have followed officials to their vehicles and in some cases have even gotten physical with them and there’s no place for that in youth sports.

Now I’m not a parent, but like I mentioned I have umpired baseball games before and I have been yelled at quite a bit by parents, but that was all that ever happened to me. I honestly don’t know how I would’ve handled a situation like some of these officials have had to deal with, but I know the first question I would’ve asked that parent would be, is this the example you want to set for your child?

You actually have to start to wonder if there will come a time when we don’t have enough officials for these games. It’s not a well-paying job and in some cases it’s actually a volunteer position. Imagine getting screamed at when you’re just there as a volunteer. I don’t know how you get people to sign up for that.

Now in baseball there has been a lot of talk the last few seasons about having a robot umpire to call balls and strikes, but there are plenty of other sports where having a robot officiate the game isn’t a possibility.

I’m not sure what the answer is or if there even is an answer, but I keep hoping that adults will act like adults and understand the position some of these officials are in especially at the youth levels. In no means am I saying that you can’t voice your opinion. All I’m saying is remember who’s watching you voice that opinion and remember the affect you could have on those kids or even young adults that are also able to hear what you say and see how you act.

I’d love to hear if you’ve had experience with a situation like this. Maybe you coached or officiated like I did. Or maybe you were just a parent watching your kid play and did some yelling at an official. I’d like to see as many sides of this as possible.

Here’s an update on my NFL playoff picks. I actually went 3-1 on Sunday. I had the Philadelphia Eagles winning and covering which they did. I also had the Kansas City Chiefs winning and covering. Well, the Chiefs did win, but they didn’t cover. Either way as we head to the Super Bowl in just under two weeks, I’ve actually managed to win more than I’ve lost this playoff season. I’d have to go back and check, but I believe that I am now 14-10 on my playoff picks. Now, I know that’s still not great, but usually I’m right at .500 or under .500, so I’m pretty happy how these NFL playoff picks went.

Since the Super Bowl is still aways off I’ll wait until the Sunday of the game to make my pick. I did see that Philadelphia was the early betting favorite, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see that go back and forth between both teams quite a few times before the game.

As always don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

How was your week?

Posted: January 29, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

We’ve reached the conference championship games in the NFL playoffs, so after today will know which two teams will meet in the Super Bowl on February 12th.

The NFC has the first game today as the Philadelphia Eagles host the San Francisco 49ers. Looking at the betting line this morning the Eagles are a 2 1/2-point favorite in this game. San Francisco has the #1 rated defense in the NFL while Philadelphia has recorded more sacks than any other team since the 1986 Chicago Bears. Looking at that you’d think that this game might be a defensive struggle, but that’s no longer the case in today’s NFL. Both of these teams like to establish their running game, but what I think the difference is going to be is the deep passing game. San Francisco has given up some long touchdown passes this season and if Jalen Hurts can find the time either with the help of his offensive line or by using his legs to create it he could beat that #1 rated San Francisco defense deep.

With that in mind I’m going to go with Philadelphia to get the win in this game and I also think that they’ll cover the 2 1/2-point spread.

Over in the AFC championship game we have the Kansas City Chiefs hosting the Cincinnati Bengals. This is a rematch of last season AFC championship game, a game that the Bengals won. No one has really mentioned that this week as most of the talk has been about Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and his high ankle sprain. To no one’s surprise Mahomes is going to play in this game, but we won’t know what type of mobility he has until the game is under way. On the Cincinnati side they’ll still be without three of their starting offensive linemen, but they seemed to be able to work around that last week. The betting line on this game has moved all over the place and right now Kansas City is favored by 1 1/2-points.

This is a tough game to pick, but I’m going to go with Kansas City to get the win and a little revenge from last season and I believe that the Chiefs will cover the 1 1/2-point spread in this game.

As always let me know who you think is going to win both of these games and where you’d put your money according to what the point spreads are. Will also have to see if I can manage to keep doing fairly well with my picks.

The baseball Hall of Fame announced the results from their vote this year and there will be one new member added to the Hall of Fame.

Scott Rolen was the only player to receive enough votes to get into the Hallof Fame this time around. Rolen received 297 votes or 76.3% of the writers’ votes. You need 75% of the votes to be elected to the Hall of Fame.

If no player had been elected, it would’ve been the second time in three years that no player had received the 75% of the votes necessary to get into the Hall of Fame. Now I don’t have an issue when no one gets into the Hall of Fame, but there are plenty of people that do. You have to remember what this award is. This is for the greatest players off all-time, and this is where my issue comes up.

In my opinion Rolen was a very good player, but not an all-time great player. Rolen’s career started in 1996 with the Philadelphia Phillies. From Philadelphia he went to the St. Louis Cardinals. He also spent a couple of seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays before finishing his career in 2012 as a member of the Cincinnati Reds.

Overall Rolen played in 17 seasons. Rolen was the 1997 Rookie of the Year with the Phillies and won a World Series in 2006 as a member of the Cardinals. Of course, when I think most people think of Rolen they think of defense as he is an eight-time Gold Glove award winner. In a way that kind of proves my point. Rolen was very good, but not great.

Rolen never had a 40-home run season. Over his career he had three 30 home runs seasons with his career high in 2004 when he hit 34. He never won the Most Valuable Player award; he ended up in the Top 25 of the MVP voting four times in his career with 4th being the highest he ever finished in the voting. Rolen is not a member of the 3000-hit club he had 2077 in his career and he’s not a member of the 600-home run club as he hit 316 home runs in his career. Rolen never won a batting title and had just two seasons in his career where he hit over .300. When you look at Rolen’s offensive stats he actually never led the league in any category.

Now I’m never going to say that Rolen wasn’t a good player, but good players don’t belong in the Hall of Fame great players do. So, ask yourself this do you think that Scott Rolen was a great player?

Remember to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

Let’s call it Wednesday!

Posted: January 25, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Well, my predictions for Sunday went pretty well as I hit on three of the four, I made. That actually puts me two games over .500 at 11-9 for the NFL playoffs. I guess will have to see how it goes for the conference championship games.

I did have the Buffalo Bills winning their game against the Cincinnati Bengals, which was the one prediction I got wrong, but luckily, I took the Bengals and the points. In the second game I had the San Francisco 49weers to win and to cover which they managed to.

What I did find kind of strange was the way the media especially ESPN covered the San Francisco victory. Oddly they focused on the Dallas Cowboys losing the game more than San Francisco winning the game. As you may have noticed in the paragraph before this that I mentioned that San Francisco covered the spread which meant they were favored to win the game all along, but the way it was covered you would’ve thought that San Francisco pulled off an upset.

I understand that Dallas is “America’s team” and they’re always going to get coverage when they don’t deserve it, but if you think about San Francisco’s situation it’s pretty impressive that they’re where they are right now. The NFC West had the defending Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams who had a very down season, but the division did have the surprising Seattle Seahawks team in it. You also have to remember that San Francisco is on its third starting quarterback this season and he’s a rookie.

It might actually be in San Francisco’s favor that the media isn’t making as big a deal out of their success as they should as it might make it just a little easier for them to sneak up on or maybe surprise teams a little. Of course, now that there’s only two teams left in each conference that will be a lot harder to do.

Both conference championship games are on Sunday, so I’ll make my picks in the Sunday blog, but here’s how the schedule is set up for Sunday. The NFC has the first game as San Francisco visits the Philadelphia Eagles. Philadelphia is a 2 1/2-point favorite right now. The game is scheduled to start at 2:00 p.m. and it’s on Fox. In the second game the Kansas City Chiefs host the Cincinnati Bengals. Right the now Bengals are a 1 1/2-point favorite, but I’m sure this line will move quite a bit depending on the injury status of Kansas City’s quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes was diagnosed with a high ankle sprain but is expected to play in this game. The game is scheduled to start at 5:30 p.m. and it’s on CBS.

It appears as though the Boston Red Sox have made a decision on their shortstop for the 2023 season. The Red Sox decided to not try and sign Xander Bogaerts and he ended up signing with the San Diego Padres. With Bogaerts moving on it looked like Trevor Story would take over as the Red Sox shortstop. Story turned out to have an issue with his right elbow and needed internal brace surgery and will miss a significant part of the 2023 season. Story’s injury left the Red Sox with a hole at shortstop again. Yesterday it seems as though the Red Sox fill the shortstop position by acquiring Adalberto Mondesi from the Kanas City Royals for left-handed pitcher Josh Taylor.

Mondesi has appeared in parts of seven seasons for the Royals and was thought to be their starting shortstop last season, but injuries limited him to just 15 games in the 2022 season. Unfortunately, Mondesi has had a bit of an injury plagued career and will be looking to change his luck with the Red Sox. Tye most games Mondesi has played in a season is 102, but it appears as though the Red Sox will be hoping that he’ll be able to play more games this season.

Besides trading for Mondesi the Red Sox also announced that they have signed outfielder Adam Duvall to a one year $7 million dollar deal. With incentives Duvall could make $10 million dollars in total.

Duvall spent the last season and a half with the Atlanta Braves and was a member of their World Series winning 2021 team. Last season Duvall was limited to 86 games due to injury, so he’s another player the Red Sox will be looking to be healthy for the 2023 season.

Duvall is a Gold Glove winner who can play all three outfield positions, but it’s possible that the Red Sox will play him in Centerfield full time. Duvall hit a career high 38 home runs in 2021 and is expected to add that power to the Red Sox line up especially in Fenway Park.

Alright, if you’d like to feel free to leave me your picks for the conference championship games if you’d like to. If not feel free to wait until Sunday like I’m going to.

Remember to look for me on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

How was your week?

Posted: January 22, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Well, as it turned out it was another set of predictions that ended up at the .500 mark for me. Yesterday I had the winners of both games correct, but I was way, way off on betting the spread of those games.

In Saturday’s opening divisional playoff game, the Kansas City Chiefs had a tougher time getting past the Jacksonville Jaquars than I thought they would. Kansas City ended up picking up a 27-20 victory. Patrick Mahomes injured his ankle in the game, but I don’t know how much affect that had on the final score as Jacksonville found ways to stay in the game and it appeared had chances to tie or maybe even find a way to get win, but two late turnovers cost them.

The divisional round night playoff game wasn’t anywhere bear as close as the first one was, The Philadelphia Eagles cruised past the New York Giants by a score of 38-7. Philadelphia had a 14-0 lead after the 1st quarter and never looked back. The Eagles were up 28-0 by the time the Giants scored their touchdown in the 3rd quarter. The Eagles added 10 4th quarter points just to extend the final score.

So, we move on to today’s games and the AFC has the first game on the schedule today as the Buffalo Bills host the Cincinnati Bengals.

Last season Cincinnati made a run through the playoffs and represented the AFC in the Super Bowl, but they didn’t have to face the Bills on that run. The other interesting fallout from this game is that if Cincinnati wins, they’ll play the AFC championship game in Kansas City, but if Buffalo wins the game will be played at a neutral sire which is Atlanta. I don’t think that the weather will be too big of a factor in this game and Buffalo is currently a 6-point favorite. This is probably the toughest game of the weekend for me to pick, but I’m going to go with Buffalo and I’m going to lay the points.

The divisional round playoffs wrap up with the San Francisco 49ers hosting the Dallas Cowboys. I’ve heard a lot of the sports personalities on ESPN complaining that the 49ers have an unfair advantage coming into this game since they had two extra days rest. I guess these people didn’t notice that the Cowboys played the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the network they work for on super wild card Monday, and it was probably at the request of that network. I guess they were setting up an excuse for the Cowboys if they lose which I think they will.

San Francisco is currently a 4-point favorite for today’s game. It will be interesting to see how Brock Purdy plays against the Cowboys defense, but I believe that he’ll do enough for the 49ers to win and to cover the 4-point spread.

Now I understand that with the way baseball is looked at now through sabermetrics and analytics that winning a batting title is no longer considered what it used to be, but I still think it’s a pretty impressive feat. You’ll have to let me know your feelings about that in the comments.

Anyway, Luis Arraez of the Minnesota Twins won the American League batting title with a .316 average. Arraez played in 144 games last season and had 547 at bats, so it’s not like he backed into the batting title.

Well yesterday Arraez is now a member of the Miami Marlins as he was dealt along with two minor leaguers for right-handed pitcher Pablo Lopez and two minor leaguers.

There had been a lot of rumors that the Marlins would trade one of their starting pitchers this off season and that Lopez was the most likely candidate to be dealt.

On the surface this might not be a blockbuster trade, but what I thought was interesting about it was this is the second time since 1979 that the winner of the American League batting title has been traded and oddly it was the Twins who were involved in that deal as well.

After winning the American league batting title in 1978 Rod Carew was traded by the Twins to the then California Angels for four players.

Who knows if Arraez will go on to have the same type of career that Carew did and to be fair it’s doubtful, but as for now they have this little odd tidbit in common involving the Twins and winning a batting title.

Well, it’s that time again. Let me know who your picks for the two NFL playoff games we’ve got going on today and also include if you think your picks will cover the point spread.

Remember to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

Let’s call it Wednesday!

Posted: January 18, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

I got off to a bad start with my NFL playoff predictions, but I managed to bounce back and finished the super wild card weekend 6-6. So, I’m dead even heading into this weekend. This week we have two games on Saturday and two games on Sunday and just like last week I’ll make my predictions for the Saturday games today, but I’ll wait until the Sunday blog to make my picks for those two games.

Saturday kicks off with the AFC #1 seed Kansas City Chiefs hosting the Jacksonville Jaquars. Arrowhead stadium is a tough place to play, and a young Jacksonville team might run into some issues against a veteran Kansas City team there. I believe that the Chiefs will win this game outright and I’m going to go ahead and lay the 8 1/2 points that the Chiefs are currently favored by. This has a chance to be a very good game to watch, but I believe that in the end Kansas City will pull away and win.

The second game on Saturday has the NFC”s #1 the Philadelphia Eagles hosting a team they’re very familiar with the New York Giants. Philadelphia won both of the regular season match ups against the Giants including the final week of the regular season when Jalen Hurts returned. There will be some questions about how healthy Hurts is for this game, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be playing. I have the Eagles winning this game, but I’m going to take the Giants and the 7 1/2 points as I think this will be a close game.

On Sunday night the Cincinnati Bengals got by the Baltimore Ravens on one of the odder plays that I think anyone had seen. Baltimore’s quarterback was trying to stretch the football out to break the plain of the goal line. While Todd Hundley was trying to get the ball across that line it was knocked out of his hands and Bengals defensive lineman Sam Hubbard grabbed it and took it 98 yards for the game winning touchdown.

While that was truly and exciting play, but things could’ve just as easily went the other way, and it might’ve been the Ravens moving on to the divisional playoff round and there are a few people out there who think that Baltimore would’ve advanced had Lamar Jackson decided to play.

Jackson last played in Week 13, but it looked as though he was going to be able to recover in time to play in the playoff game against the Bengals. Jackson ended up sending out a tweet explaining that his injury was worse than expected and he would be missing the Ravens playoff game against Cincinnati. Jackson injured his PCL, and it was originally called a Grade 2 sprain, but in his tweet, Jackson said it was actually a Grade 3 sprain and that would keep him out of the game.

There are actually people who have question the extent of Jackson’s injury. Now Jackson is in the last year of his contract with the Ravens and acts as his own agent. Baltimore made Jackson a very good offer right before the season started as Jackson mentioned that he wouldn’t negotiate during the season. It seemed as though there was a good chance that Jackson would sign the deal that included $133 million dollars in guaranteed money.

Right before Baltimore and Jackson agreed to any kind of deal the Cleveland Browns announced that they had signed their quarterback Deshaun Watson to a five-year deal worth $230 million dollars with all of the money guaranteed.

While the total money in the Ravens contract offer to Jackson would’ve been very close in total dollar amount to what Watson got from Cleveland the guaranteed money wasn’t in the same ballpark. The guaranteed money gap ended any type of negotiations between Jackson and the Ravens as the regular season was getting ready to start.

You can’t really blame Jackson for wanting the same amount of guaranteed money as someone like Watson. Jackson has won a league MVP and is looked at as one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL. Watson on the other hand is 1-2 in three playoff games and missed 11 games last season while suspended under the NFL’s personal conduct policy.

The question that came up about Jackson was did he sit out the playoff game as a punishment of sorts to the Ravens for not giving him a new contract.

You would have to think that if Jackson and the Ravens can’t agree on a new deal that they’ll use their franchise tag on him, but there’s also talk that Baltimore may be interested in trading Jackson if the right deal came about. If Baltimore is serious about trading Jackson by applying a tag to him would allow them time to find a trade partner.

If Baltimore does decide to move on from Jackson it would be interesting to see which way, they went at the quarterback position. Could Hundley thrive knowing that he was the #1 guy from the start? Would they bring in one of the veteran quarterbacks that will probably be available this offseason? Or would they try to move up in the draft and find Jackson’s replacement that way.

Let me know what move you think the Ravens would make if they decided to move on from Jackson. I’d also like to know your picks for the Saturday playoff games.

Remember to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

How was your week

Posted: January 15, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Now I’m not going to tell you that I told you so when it came to following my gambling advice. Well wait a minute I think I am going to tell you that as I stumbled out of the gate on super wild card weekend with a 1-3 record. At halftime of both games yesterday my picks looked pretty good, but unfortunately, they had to play the second half of the games and I lost out on three of my four picks. Well hopefully I’ll have better luck with the three games today and the Monday night game.

We start off today’s NFL action with the Buffalo Bills hosting the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins officially announced that Tua Tagovalioa will miss this game as he is still in concussion protocol. Veteran backup Teddy Bridgewater is expected to be active for the game today, but he’s dealing with an injured finger, so Miami turns to 3rd string quarterback Skylar Thompson to start this game. The Bills are relatively healthy coming into this game and that’s just one of the advantages they have over the Dolphins today. Buffalo opened as a 10-point favorite, but after the Dolphins injuries were announced the line has now made Buffalo a 14-point favorite. I’m going with the Bills to win the game outright and I’m even going to lay the 14 points and take them to cover.

The second wild card game of the day has the Minnesota Vikings hosting the New York Giants. These two teams met in the regular season and the Giants made a big comeback only to lose on a last second field goal. Minnesota was 13-4 on the season, but they had their struggles in the second half of games. This may end up being the best and closest game of the super sild card weekend. I’m going with this pick as my upset for the weekend as I have the Giants winning the game and I’m going to take the 3 points as well.

The final game today has the Baltimore Ravens at the Cincinnati Bengals. Baltimore finds itself in a similar situation as Miami is. Lamar Jackson won’t play in this game because he’s still not recovered from the knee injury that’s kept him out for quite some time. There are some people questioning the extent of Jackson’s injury, but I’m going to focus on picking the game and not that issue. Baltimore’s back up Tyler Hundley has been dealing with a couple of injuries as well, but it’s been reported that he’s on track to play in today’s game and is likely to share snaps with 3rd stringer Anthony Brown. Juggling quarterbacks is never a good option for a team especially during the playoffs and being on the road. Cincinnati seems to be getting hot at the right time just like they did last season. I got the Bengals to win this game and I’m going to lay the 8 1/2 points that they’re favored by.

Super wild card weekend wraps up on Monday night with a match up that the television networks look at as being a marquee matchup. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are hosting the Dallas Cowboys. Yes, the Buccaneers are the home team even though they had a losing record 8-9 this season. The Buccaneers are the NFC South champions while the Cowboys come into the playoffs as a wild card team that gives Tampa Bay the home game. Even though they’re the wild card team and they’re on the road the Cowboys are a 2 1/2-point favorite in this game. Even though Dallas finished the season with a 12-4 record they didn’t finish the season strong, and Dak Prescott has had some issues turning the football over. Of course, Tom Brady is no longer the quarterback most people remember either, but he knows how to take advantage of a defense’s weakness. It seems as though this game might come down to the Cowboys defense getting to Brady and upsetting his timing and Prescott not turning the football over. I’m going to go with Tampa Bay to win this game and I’ll take the 2 1/2 points that they’re being given.

Here’s hoping that my picks for Today and tomorrow do much better than my picks did yesterday. I’m going to turn it over to you now. Let me know who you think are going to win today and tomorrow’s game and if you’re going to be taking or giving points in those games.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: January 11, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The National Football League wrapped up its regular season on Sunday and now there are 12 teams left with a chance to win the Super Bowl while the other 20 teams get ready for the draft.

With college football also done the NFL will take over all of next weekend. There will be two games on Saturday, three games on Sunday and things wrap up with a Monday night game.

Here’s the schedule. Wild card weekend or Super wild card weekend as I heard it referred to starts with the San Francisco 49ers hosting the Seattle Seahawks. Fox is televising this game and it has a 3:30 p.m. start time. The second game on Saturday has the Los Angeles Chargers visiting the Jacksonville Jaquars. This game will be on NBC and has a start time of 7:15 p.m. On Sunday the playoffs kickoff with the Buffalo Bills hosting the Miami Dolphins. CBS will be showing this game and it has a scheduled start time of Noon. The second game on Sunday has the Minnesota Vikings hosting the New York Giants. This game is on Fox and has a scheduled 3:30 p.m. start time. The final Sunday game is on NBC, and it features the Cincinnati Bengals hosting the Baltimore ravens and the listed start time is 7:15 p.m. Just like during the season ESPN will be showing the Monday night playoff game, but I believe that the game will also be shown on ABC. On Monday the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be hosting the Dallas Cowboys and the game is scheduled to start at 7:15 p.m.

I decided that I’ll make my picks for the Saturday games now, but I’m going to wait and pick the remaining games in the Sunday blog. I must warn you that I am terrible at picking games and you’re much better off following someone else’s advice if you’re going to bet on the games.

I believe that San Francisco will beat Seattle in the playoff opener on Saturday, but I’m not sold that the 49ers will be able to cover the spread which is currently 10 points. That’s a big number for a playoff game and these are two teams that like to run the football, so that make keep scoring down a little and make the game closer. So, I’m going with San Francisco to win the game, but Seattle to cover the spread.

In the Saturday nightcap the Chargers are currently favored by 1 point against Jacksonville. this is a tough game to pick since I haven’t gotten to see much of the Chargers this season. This is Jacksonville’s first time in the playoffs since 2017 and I don’t think that any of the players from that team are currently on the Jaguars. I do think that the Chargers are going to win this game and one point isn’t very much to give, so I’m going to take the Chargers not only to win, but to cover.

Okay just to recap I have San Francisco and Los Angeles winning the Saturday games straight up. With the point spread I’m taking Seattle and the 10 points, but I’ll give the point and take the Chargers in the second game.

As I like to do let me know who you’re taking not only to win the game, but with the spread.

Going into Sunday’s games there are some quarterback questions that need to be answer before making picks. It’s currently unclear if Tua Tagovailoa is going to play for the Dolphins and we’re also waiting on work if Lamar Jackson will play for the Ravens this coming weekend.

No one is really sure what will happen with either quarterback, but most people seem to believe that Jackson will play against Cincinnati. In Tagovailoa’s case most people seem to think that he won’t be playing against the Bills this coming weekend, but there’s still some time and will have to wait and see what happens officially with both players.

Both of these quarterbacks’ health could have a big impact on if their teams can get past the wild card round. It’s shown that Miami is a much better team with Tagovailoa under center than with either Teddy Bridgewater or Skylar Thompson at quarterback. The same can be said about Baltimore being better with Jackson at quarterback than Tyler Huntley or Anthony Brown however Huntley did go 2-2 in his four starts this season. The Dolphins on the other hand went 1-3 in games not started by Tagovailoa.

Don’t forget to leave me your picks for the Saturday games and as always remember to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

How was your week

Posted: January 8, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

It seems like the Major League Baseball off season went very quickly as pitchers and catchers will be reporting to spring training before we know it. What also went fast was the signing of the top tier or bigger name free agents. These guys really got paid this off season, but there’s a chance that teams will have one more of those big named players back on the market.

Originally Carlos Correa agreed to a very large long-term deal with the San Francisco Giants. Then there was something that the Giants saw on Correa’s physical that they didn’t like and voided their deal with him. That didn’t stop the New York Mets from moving right in and signing Correa to another large contract. Now it seems as though the Mets are having an issue with the same thing that the Giants saw and they’re trying to re-work their agreement with him.

Now there are reports that the Mets have become “frustrated” with on ongoing negotiations with Correa and there’s been talk that they might walk away from the deal they have in place with Correa. If that was to happen Correa would once again be free to sign with any team.

Believe it or not there are reports that if the Mets decide to void the deal, they agreed to Correa with there are two teams that are already interested in signing him. Of course, you’d have to think that those teams would want some type of protection in any contract they’d sign with Correa.

The Mets issue as well as the Giants was an injury from back when Correa was a 19-year-old minor leaguer in the Houston Astros system. Correa suffered a fractured fibula while sliding into third base. The injury required surgery, and a metal plate was inserted into Correa’s leg.

One of the teams that would have interest in Correa and there are some reports that say Correa’s agent Scott Boras has already spoken to them is the Minnesota Twins. Correa spent last season with the Twins but opted out of the contract he had with them to enter the free agent market this off season.

Correa played in 136 games for Minnesota last season. He hit .291 with 22 home runs and 64 RBIs. Defensively Correa played 1113 1/3rd innings at shortstop last season. Correa made 8 errors last season and posted a fielding percentage of .983.

Correa returning to Minnesota if his deal with the Mets falls through seems to make some sense. Since Correa was a member of the Twins last season and they went through the free agent process with him before you would think that Minnesota has a full grasp of his medical situation.

Now last season while with Minnesota Correa had a scare with his surgically repair leg. Correa slide into 2nd base and ended up staying down for a period of time before he finally got up and limped off the field. Now Correa remained in that game, but afterwards he did say that he had briefly felt numbness and vibration in that surgically repaired leg. This happened on September 20th and Correa did not miss any time in the subsequent, final weeks of the season. If there were any lingering issues, they weren’t made apparent through his performance on the field.

We’ll have to see how the situation plays out with Correa and the Mets, but there’s a chance that Correa will have an opportunity to sign with a third team this off season. I’m not sure, but I’d have to think that would be some type of a record.

Another player who appears to be the verge of becoming a free agent is Trevor Bauer. The Los Angeles Dodgers designated Bauer for assignment which means that they now have to either trade or release him within a certain length of time.

It’s very doubtful that the Dodgers would be able to find a trade partner for Bauer as he is owed officially $32 million dollars for this season, but after having to forfeit some of that salary he’ll still be owed right around $22.5 million dollars for the 2023 season.

If and when Bauer gets released it would be the Dodgers that would be on the hook for his 2023 salary. If another team signs him after his official release, they could pay him the league minimum if Bauer would be willing to accept that. I believe the Dodgers would then be responsible for the difference in what Bauer signs for and what they owe him.

I’m sure it comes as no surprise that the Dodgers made this decision after the legal issues Bauer has had. What will be interesting is if another team will be willing to bring Bauer into their spring training camp to take a look at him. For what it’s worth Bauer never did end up facing any charges, but you’d have to wonder if another team was to bring him in if there would be any backlash.

Bauer hasn’t pitched in a game since June 28th of 2021 when he went 6 innings against the Giants and got the win in an 3-2 Dodgers victory.

Well as always, I want to hear from you.

It’s very clear that Carlos Correa will be playing somewhere in the 2023 baseball season, but where do you see him ending up. Will he be able to restructure his deal with the Mets? Or do you see him signing somewhere else?

What about Trevor Bauer, do you think that there’s a team out there that would be willing to take a chance on him? Don’t forget that at one time he was one of the top pitchers in baseball and is a Cy Young award winner.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: January 4, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The college football season is down to just one game as the Georgia Bulldogs will try to repeat as national champions when they face the TCU Horned Frogs on Monday.

I live in Big 10 country and there were two Big Ten teams in contention to play for the national championship, but they both lost. Michigan dropped its game to TCU and Ohio State was beaten by Georgia. Overall, the Big Ten had nine teams in bowl games and I’m not counting USC or UCLA as they’re not officially part of the conference yet. In those nine games the Big Ten managed to have a winning record at 5-4, but it wasn’t quite the performance that anyone was hoping for.

I don’t watch a ton of college football, but I have friends that watch multiple games every week and they pointed out to me that it seems as though teams are just faster than the Big Ten teams. Obviously the Big Ten gets top tier recruits like the other big time college football programs but is it possible that this is the case and that other teams are finding faster athletes than the Big Ten is.

For years the Big Ten has been thought of as a conference were running the football is king, but I think just about every team in college football has moved away from that kind of a game plan. Maybe Big Ten teams aren’t finding those faster players because they do at times have weather to deal with and speed doesn’t always benefit you in cases like that.

Now I’m not sure what the reason could be. All I know is the Big Ten had a 50% chance to get a team into the national championship game and neither one of them got in.

It appears as though college football is headed to a point where there will be four super conferences and the Big Ten will be one of them. I guess will have to wait and see once this situation starts to set up if the Big Ten can compete with those other conferences.

There’s a lot going on in the NFL, but first and foremost is the condition of Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin. I haven’t heard any new updates on his condition, but like everyone else I hope that he’s able to make a complete recover and is released from the hospital very soon.

It’s unclear what the NFL is planning for the final week of the regular season, but I’m under the impression that they’ll play the games. I did like the way they set up this final week. We knew which teams would be playing which, but the NFL waited to announce which games would be at what time. I thought that made things interesting and it allowed the NFL and their television partners to get the games with playoff implications into prime television spots.

The Sunday night game for Week 18 has the Green Bay Packers hosting the Detroit Lions. The winner of this game will get the last NFC wild card spot. Who would’ve thought that the Lions would have a chance at making the playoffs after starting off the season 1-6. You could almost ask the same thing about the Packers after the trial and tribulations they had this season, but one of these teams will be a playoff team.

The other game with pretty big playoff implications has the Baltimore Ravens visiting the Cincinnati Bengals. Both of these teams will be in the playoffs, but the winner of this game will win the AFC North and get a home playoff game while the loser will go into the playoffs as a wild card team.

As of right now I don’t believe that the NFL has announced a start time for the Cincinnati vs. Baltimore game. The last listing, I saw for the game had the start time as TBD.

The Jalen Hurts injury has also given teams the opportunity to take the #1 seed away from the Philadelphia Eagles. Currently Philadelphia has a one game lead on the Dallas Cowboys, San Francisco 49ers and Minnesota Vikings. I believe that the Cowboys hold the tiebreaker advantage over the Eagles, but I don’t know where the 49ers or the Vikings sit in a tiebreaker situation.

Minnesota and San Francisco both have very winnable games in Week 18. The Vikings are in Chicago to play the Bears while the 49ers are at home against the Arizona Cardinals. The Cowboys are on the road in what is a rivalry game against the Washington Commanders while the Eagles are at home against the New York Giants, and it’s been reported that Hurts is on track to play.

Now it’s possible that the Giants might rest players as they can’t improve their playoff position. Will have to see what those teams with a shot at that #1 seed do.

Remember it’s just the #1 seed in each conference that gets the bye in the first playoff round.

Let me know if you have any NFL predictions for this final week of the regular season.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.