Archive for the ‘sports’ Category

How was your week

Posted: November 21, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Well the National Basketball Association tried, but just like Major League Baseball they where unsuccessful to come to an agreement with the Canadian government to allow the Toronto Raptors to play home games in that country. This comes as no surprise as Canada has had much stricter Covid-19 guidelines than the United States since the start of the outbreak.

Luckily with the regular season a month and a day away from starting the NBA was able to find the Raptors a temporary home to at least start the 2020-21 season. The hope is that the Raptors will be able to return to paying games in Toronto at some point during the 2020-21 season.

As for now the Raptors will be playing their home games in Tampa Florida at the Amalie Arena which is the home of the Stanley Cup winning Tampa Bay Lighting. The arena can hold 20,500 people for basketball games and while Florida is one of the states that is allowing fans at events there is limited capacity; so there won’t be 20,500 at any Raptors home game.

So do we have to start calling them the Tampa Bay Raptors?

With the draft over and done with NBA free agency started yesterday and while there where quite a few signings there where no real big name players that changed teams.

The biggest signing was actually a resigning as De’Aaron Fox inked a five year $163 million dollar extension with the Sacramento Kings. This deal will keep Fox in Sacramento until 2026 and his contract includes a clause that could make it worth $195 million dollars.

Fox was the 5th pick in the 2017 draft and is coming off his best season. Fox averaged 21.1 points per game, 6.8 assists per game and 1.5 steals per game. Fox played very well in the Kings short residence in the NBA bubble, but it seems as though he has established himself as the face of the franchise.

One other very interesting signing kept Montrezl Harrell in Los Angeles, but instead of playing for the Clippers he’ll be joining the world champion Lakers.

Harrell who was the NBA’s 6th man of the year last season signed a two year deal with the Lakers for $19 million dollars.

Apparently Harrell was offered more money to play for the Charlotte Hornets, but choose to stay in Los Angeles, but with the Lakers.

The move came as a bit of a surprise as most thought that the Lakers would be looking at add a player like Serge Ibaka or Marc Gasol.

While Harrell wasn’t the signing that people expected the Lakers to make he should fit very well with Dennis Schroder in the pick and roll game. Schroder was acquired by the Lakers earlier in the week through a trade with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Harrell will also help fill the void left by Dwight Howard who’s leaving the Lakers to sign a one year deal with the Philadelphia 76ers.

The other big news coming out of free agency wasn’t a signing. It was the news that Gordon Hayward would be turning down his $34.1 million dollar option with the Boston Celtics to enter free agency.

Hayward seems to have made his intention clear that he’d like to sign with the Indiana Pacers, but there is a possibility that he’ll resign with the Celtics. The New York Knicks have also expressed interest in signing Hayward, but it seems unlikely he’d sign there.

It seems as though the Pacers don’t have the salary cap space to sign Hayward to the contract he would require; so don’t be surprised if this ends up being a sign and trade deal between the Pacers and the Celtics.

Hayward is from Indiana; so by signing with the Pacers he’d be returning not only home, but to the state where he played his college basketball. Hayward played his college basketball at Butler in Indiana.

What do you think of these free agent moves? Do you think any of them will have a big impact on the upcoming NBA season?

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: November 18, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

As I’ve mentioned before I live in a suburb of Chicago Illinois. Yesterday there was some big news regarding the Chicago Cubs. Theo Epstein the team President of Baseball Operations announced that he’ll be leaving the team with one year left on his contract. Now this didn’t come as a huge surprised as Epstein has mentioned on more than one occasion that he thought 10 years was the perfect amount of time to spend with a team and this would’ve been his 9th season with the Cubs; so he almost hit his number.

Epstein is always going to be remembered in Chicago as the guy who helped break the curse of the Billy goat by assembling the Cubs team that won the 2016 World Series, but I’m not sure the team accomplished as much as it should’ve.

The Cubs where 705-651 in the nine years Epstein was in charge of the team. The Cubs also made five playoff appearances over that time, but they made it to the World Series just the one time and in their last two playoff appearances they haven’t been able to get out of the first round.

With all of the talent the Cubs had it almost seems as though they underachieved in Epstein’s time with the team, but since the Cubs did get that elusive World Series win a lot of this will be forgotten.

Now let’s look at what kind of position Epstein left the Cubs in. Jason Heyward hasn’t performed to what his contract is, but he’s under contract for three more seasons. Yu Darvish had what the Cubs hope was a breakout season in 2020 because he’s also under contract for three more seasons. The last long term deal that Epstein left the Cubs with is Kyle Hendricks contract which has three seasons plus an option year. Of wait I forgot about David Bote who has a very friendly four seasons remaining on his contract plus two option years. The Cubs also have Craig Kimbrell under contract for one more season and he does have an option year, but I don’t know why they’d pick that up with the way he’s performed.

The Cubs picked up Anthony Rizzo’s option year on his contract; so he’ll be a free agent at the end of the 2021 season. Kris Bryant and Kyle Schwarber and Javier Baez are in their final years of arbitration; so they’ll hit the free agent market in 2021. While Willson Contreras has just two years of arbitration left; so he’ll be a free agent following the 2022 season.

Now Epstein didn’t leave the cupboard bare he did leave his successor Jed Hoyer in a position where he’s going to have to make some very tough personnel decisions. With all these contracts coming up the Cubs are going to look drastically different in the next couple of seasons.

Now there hasn’t been giving a reason why Epstein decided to walk away from the Cubs with one year remaining on his contract, but you have to wonder if he didn’t want to have to make these upcoming decisions. It also possible that he understood that the Cubs would never be able to resign all of these players he drafted and he didn’t want to try and rebuild the team again.

Now almost as soon as it was announced that Epstein would be leaving the Cubs he was linked to a new team. It seems like the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Mets where the first names that came up. The Los Angeles Angels name ended up creeping in later in the conversation, but I’m not sure if any of these teams will be where Epstein lands.

Remember that Epstein built his reputation on rebuilding teams; so you’d have to think that would be the kind of situation he’s looking for, but the way he rebuilt the Cubs and the Bostin Red Sox can no longer be done because of the rule changes Major League Baseball has made. This makes you wonder if Epstein does end up signing on with a new team and it does seem like that will happen will he have adjusted his rebuilding strategy. I’m honestly not sure if he’ll be successful with his next team.

Where do you think Epstein’s next landing spot is?

Did you know that the NBA Draft is tonight? Well it is and the Minnesota Timberwolves have the #1 pick?

What I’m interested to know from you is who do you think the Timberwolves will take with that pick? It seems like the name most associated with Minnesota’s pick is Anthony Edwards the guard from Georgia, but there are a couple of names that might sneak into that pick.

If the Timberwolves decide they want a young big man they could go with James Wiseman who played a few games for the University of Memphis before being rules ineligible. Then don’t forget that the youngest of the Ball brothers LaMelo is in this draft and should be selected pretty early and has a shot at being the first player drafted.

Edwards, Wiseman and Ball appear to be the top three players in this draft; so which one will Minnesota take? Also what order do you have these three being drafted in? If you don’t have them going 1,2,3 let me know where you see them being picked.

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live just head over to TuneIn.com and you can listen anytime you want to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: November 14, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Major League Baseball finished up handing out their awards for the regular season on Thursday. They always wrap up their week of award announcements by handing out the MVP award for each league. I think with the exception of a couple of votes here and there the voters actually got the award winners right this season. I guess when it’s just a 60 game season it’s easier for the voters to figure things out.

As far as those MVP awards go it was no real surprise who ended up winning them. Freddie Freeman of the Atlanta Braves won the National League MVP award while Jose Abreu of the Chicago White Sox picked up the award in the American League.

If you had spent five minutes watching the MLB Network as they talked about the National League MVP award you pretty much knew that Freeman was the front runner and would win the award. Freeman picked up 28 of a possible 30 1st pace votes. Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers got the other two 1st place votes and ended up finishing 2nd in the MVP race.

Freeman is the 16th 1st baseman to win the National League MVP award. Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds was he last 1st baseman to win the MVP award in 2010. Freeman also became the six member of the Braves to win the MVP award. Last last Braves player to win the MVP award was Chipper Jones in 1999.

Freeman had a well rounded year for the Braves as they as advanced all the way to the NLCS before being knocked out by the eventually World Series champions the Los Angeles Dodgers. Freeman finished second in OPS at 1.102; he was also second in batting average hitting .341 and he finished second in RBI’s with 53. Freeman also played in all 60 regular season games for Atlanta.

As for Abreu he became the 10th former Rookie of the Year to go on and win the MVP award. The last player to do it was Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners and he won both awards in the same season. It was the 15th time that a 1st baseman has won the Award in the American League. The last 1st baseman to win was Justin Morneau of the Minnesota Twins in 2006. Abreu also became the 5th member of the White Sox to win the MVP award. The last winner from the White Sox was another 1st baseman Frank Thomas who won the award in back to back seasons 1993 and 1994.

Abreu was named on all 30 ballots as he received 21 1st place votes, 8 2nd place votes and 1 3rd place vote to beat out Jose Ramirez of the Cleveland Indians who finished 2nd.

Abreu led all of Major League Baseball with 60 RBI’s. He finished second to Luke Voit of the New York Yankees with 19 home runs and his .317 batting average was 4th best in the American League. Abreu also led the American League in slugging percentage at .617. Like Freeman; Abreu also played in all 60 regular season games.

It seems as the only draw back to Abreu winning the MVP award was it meant the fact that Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels didn’t win the award and it seemed like a lot of people wanted to talk about the fact that Trout finished 5th in the MVP voting and not about Abreu winning the award. Not only did Trout finish behind Abreu and Ramirez in the voting, but D.J. LeMahieu of the Yankees and Shane Bieber of the Indians also finished ahead of Trout in the voting.

Now it’s clear that Trout is still the best player in baseball, but there’s a difference between being the best player and being most valuable and for some reason there are people who can’t figure that out. Trout’s numbers weren’t on par with the three the hitters that finished ahead of him in the voting and Bieber was the most dominate pitcher in baseball last season and I was surprised he didn’t finish in the Top 3 of the MVP voting. You also have to take into consideration that even in a season where they expended the playoffs to include 16 team Trout’s Angels still couldn’t get into them. In understand that in a analytics it’s not important to win, but when it comes to an MVP you’d like to think that he was able to help his team win games.

Trout’s 5th place finish is the lowest he’s ever had in the MVP voting since he became a full time player for the Angels back in 2012. In 2017 Trout finished 4th in the MVP voting, but other than that he’s finished 2nd four times and has won the award three times. Let’s just hope the people who talk about baseball on television can get over Trout’s 5th place finish and spend more time talking about the season Abreu had for the White Sox in winning the MVP, but sadly I think we know that’s not going to happen.

Who did you have winning the MVP award in each league? Do you think the voters got it right?

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: November 11, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

It’s official the NBA season will start on December 22nd and they’re scheduled to play 72 regular season games.

The NBA and it’s players association reached an agreement late Monday night and on Tuesday the NBA Board of Governors unanimously approved the amended agreement to the collective bargaining agreement for the 2020-21 season.

That means the NBA off season is going to be hit and heavy. The draft is just a week away on November 18th. Free agency will start two days after the draft on November 20th and then a little over a month later the season will start.

The salary cap for the 2020-21 season will be $109.1 million dollars and the luxury tax will be $132.6 million dollars. These are the exact same numbers as last season.

There are currently four teams that are in the luxury tax; the Golden State Warriors, the Boston Celtics, the Brooklyn Nets and the Philadelphia 76ers. There is a good chance that the number of teams in the luxury tax will increase because the cap and tax will now remain the same as last season.

We haven’t heard anything from any of the players yet, but it will be interesting to see if any of the players who’s team made a deep run in the playoffs will be taking time off at the beginning of the season. Remember Danny Green of the Los Angeles Lakers was on a podcast and mentioned that he would consider sitting out an entire month if the season started in December. Green also mentioned that LeBron James would probably also take a large amount of time off at the start of the season.

This just doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. We’re talking about professional athletes that are in great shape and for some reason eight weeks isn’t enough time for them to get their bodies ready to play a shortened season. What Green seemed to forget when he was on that podcast is the fact that there are teams that didn’t go to the bubble last season and haven’t played an NBA game in over 200 days. Of course it’s not surprising that he was only thinking about himself. Green also didn’t mention the fact that players pretty much get time off whenever they want it and teams have started calling it “load management”.

What I find interesting is ESPN just laid off 200 employees this week. How many of these layoffs came about because they overpaid to broadcast NBA games? You also have to wonder with the NBA’s television ratings in the tank how ESPN and TNT would feel about star players decide their taking large chunks of the season off. Could that cost more people their jobs at ESPN?

I get that the NBA is a players league, but at some point in time don’t you think they’d want to start being a fans league.

Well we’ve had two awards handed out by Major League Baseball. On Monday they named their Rookie’s of the Year and yesterday they handed out their Manager of the Year awards.

I wasn’t surprised at all when Don Mattingly of the Miami Marlins and Kevin Cash of the Tampa Bay Rays won the Manager of the Year awards for their respective leagues, but when the Rookie of the Year awards where announced I was more surprised with who won.

Devin Williams of the Milwaukee Brewers won the Rookie of the Year in the National League while Kyle Lewis of the Seattle Mariners won the award in the American League.

I guess to be fair I wasn’t totally surprised that Lewis won the award in the American League, but what I was surprised by was that he was a unanimous winner. I thought that Luis Robert of the Chicago White Sox would get some 1st place votes, but he didn’t. Oddly there was even one voter who left Robert completely off his ballot; so I’m guessing that voter didn’t watch a lot of baseball.

As for Williams they kept calling him the Brewers closer, but I guess they didn’t look at his stats because Williams got 0 saves last season. How many closers do you know that don’t get any saves? Maybe he has a future as the Brewers closer, but to call him that now is putting the cart before the horse.

I understand why Williams won this award; he’s an analytic darling and to be fair he did post an ERA of 0.33, but in all honesty did he mean more to the Brewers that Jake Cronenworth did to the San Diego Padres.

Cronenworth ended up in a tie for second place with Alec Bohm of the Philadelphia Phillies in the voting. Williams had 14 1st place votes, 6 2nd place votes and 7 3rd place votes. Cronenworth came in with 6 1st place vote, 12 2nd place votes and 8 3rd place vote while Bohm ended up with 9 1st place votes, 8 2nd place votes and 5 3rd place votes. There are 30 total voters and in case you’re wondering the other 1st place vote went to Tony Gonsolin of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Do you think that they got the four awards they’ve handed out correct? Or do you think that someone else should’ve won an award?

Today they announce the Cy Young award winners; so who do you winning that award in each league?

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: November 7, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

It was no surprise when the Cincinnati offered the $18.9 million dollar qualifying offer to pitcher Trevor Bauer. It also wasn’t a surprise when Bauer turned down that qualifying offer from the Reds.

Bauer is probably the best starting pitcher on the free agent market and you would think that there will be teams lining up to give him a multiple year deal, but with the economics of the game the way it is today will it be for at least $18.9 million dollars a season.

Now Bauer turns 30 years old in January and you’d think that he’d be getting offers of 5, 6 or even 7 years from teams and he may still get contract offers of that many years, but how much money will be involved in his new contract. Will we see Bauer get a contract offer where he’ll make $20 million dollars or more in a season?

Now you’d have to think if we weren’t dealing with this Covid-19 outbreak their might be more than one team offering Bauer a contract worth $20 million dollars or more per season. Now though teams could be dealing with the fact that they’ll either have no fans in the stands again or a limited number of fans in the stands. That means teams will be looking at another season of losing a large amounts of money and you have to wonder how this might affect contract offers to free agents.

Bauer appears to be worth #1 starter money. last season Bauer made 11 starts for Cincinnati totaling 73 innings. His won-loss record was just 5-4, but in two of those losses the Reds where shutout. Bauer also recorded two complete game shutouts himself. Bauer posted an ERA of 1.73 while striking out 100 hitters while walking just 17. There’s also a very good chance that Bauer will be picking up his first Cy Young award on November 11th. That’s a pretty goo resume for a starting pitcher who’s heading into free agency, but will the market be able to pay him what he appears to be worth?

There haven’t been any indications on which teams might be interested in Bauer, but he could fit with pretty much every MLB team. Bauer himself seems to have been showing some interest in joining the Boston Red Sox. He mentioned the Red Sox in a tweet, but he hasn’t said anything about them since that one time. You have to wonder if he’s actually interested in playing for the Red Sox or if he was just trying to get people talking about his free agency.

Who do you have Bauer pitching for next season? Also; how many years and how much money per year do you think he’ll end up getting?

Yesterday I flipped on the MLB Network just in time to here them say they had breaking news to announce; so I stuck around to see what they had to say.

Well that breaking news turned out to be that Alex Cora would be returning to manager the Red Sox on a two year deal. I’m under the impression that no one on the MLB Network is smart enough to tune in to the Sports Time Radio podcast because I’ve been saying this was going to happen since Ron Roenicke was removed as manager.

It was clear that with the injuries the Red Sox had and the fact that they traded Mookie Betts that the shortened 2020 season would be a year off for them and Roenicke was brought in just to tread water until Cora’s suspension was over. That’s exactly what happened.

Now after a season that saw the Red Sox finish 24-36 and in last place in the American League East division; can Cora turn them around?

Before being suspended Cora managed the Red Sox for two seasons. In his first season the Red Sox went 108-54 and won the World Series. In Cora’s second season the Red Sox weren’t as successful. They where just 84-78 and didn’t make the playoffs.

I doubt that something as simple as Cora returning will make the Red Sox a contender in 2021. They’ll need to get Chris Sale and Eduardo Rodriguez to return from injury and be the pitchers they where before they were hurt. They’ll also have to find a way to replace Betts. Alex Verdugo had a nice year for the Red Sox after being acquired in the Betts trade, but he’ll never put up the kind of numbers Betts did for Boston. The Red Sox like every other team in baseball have some other issues that they’ll have to try and repair; so I don’t think just bringing Cora back gets them into the playoffs next season.

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: November 4, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Major League Baseball handed out their Gold Glove awards last night and they have more awards being handed out last week. Here are the Gold Glove winners for the 2020 Major League Baseball season.

At 1st base Evan White of the Seattle Mariners won the Gold Glove in the American League while Anthony Rizzo of the Chicago Cubs took his third straight Gold Glove and fourth in the last five seasons.

At 2nd base Cesar Hernandez of the Cleveland Indians won the Gold Glove in his first season in the American League. In the National League Kolton Wong of the St. Louis Cardinals won his second straight Gold Glove. Oddly Wong’s option year of his contract wasn’t picked up by the Cardinals and he is a free agent.

At shortstop their where a couple of first time winners. J.P. Crawford of the Seattle Mariners picked up the Gold Glove in the American League while over in the National League it was Javier Baez of the Chicago Cubs winning the award for the first time in his career.

At 3rd base Isiah Kiner-Falefa of the Texas Rangers won the Gold Glove in his first season as a full time 3rd baseman. Now it will come as no surprise that Nolan Arenado of the Colorado Rockies is the Gold Glove winner in the National League. Arenado has won the Gold Glove in all eight of his major league seasons.

In leftfield Alex Gordon of the Kansas City Royals also became an eight time Gold Glove award winner in what was his final season. Gordon had two steaks of winning the Gold Glove four seasons in a row. First from 2011-2014 then from 2017-2020. Over in the National League Tyler O’Neil of the St. Louis Cardinals won the Gold Glove for the first time in his career.

In centerfield Chicago White Sox rookie Luis Robert won the Gold Glove and in the National League Trent Grisham of the San Diego Padres was the Gold Glove winner.

In rightfield even though he gets more recognition for his bat it was Joey Gallo of the Texas Rangers who won the Gold Glove. In the National League Mookie Betts of the World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers won the Gold Glove. This is the fifth time in a row that Betts has won this award with the last four being in the American League.

Roberto Perez of the Cleveland Indians won the Gold Glove award for catching in the American League. It was the first time career that Perez has won the award. In the National League Tucker Barnhart of the Cincinnati Reds won the Gold Glove award for the second time in his career.

As for pitchers we had a couple of first time Gold Glove award winners. Griffin Canning of the Los Angeles Angels took home the American League Gold Glove award while Max Fried of the Atlanta Braves won the Gold Glove award in the National League.

Do you agree with these Gold Glove award winners? If not; who do you think should’ve won?

Starting next week Major League Baseball will hand out it’s awards for the regular season. Here’s who was nominated.

The Rookie of the Year award will be handed out on November 9th.

In the American League the finalist are Luis Robert of the Chicago White Sox, Kyle Lewis of the Seattle Marines and Cristian Javier of the Houston Astros.

In the National League the finalist are Alec Bohm of the Philadelphia Phillies, Jake Cronenworth of the San Diego Padres and Devin Williams of the Milwaukee Brewers.

The Manager of the Year award will be handed out on November 10th.

In the American League the finalist are Kevin Cash of the Tampa Bay Rays, Charlie Montoyo of the Toronto Blue Jays and Rick Renteria formerly of the Chicago White Sox.

In the National League the finalist are Don Mattingly of the Miami Marlins, Jayce Tingler of the San Diego Padres and David Ross of the Chicago Cubs.

The Cy Young award will be handed out on November 11th.

The finalist in the American League are Shane Bieber of the Cleveland Indians, Kenta Maeda of the Minnesota Twins and Hyun Jin Ryu of the Toronto Blue Jays.

The National League finalist are Yu Darvish of the Chicago Cubs, Trevor Bauer of the Cincinnati Reds and Jacob deGroom of the New York Mets.

The final award to be handed out will be the Most Valuable Player award on November 12th.

In the American League the finalist are Jose Abreu of the Chicago White Sox, Jose Ramirez of the Cleveland Indians and D.J. LeMahieu of the New York Yankees.

The National League finalist are Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Manny Machado of the San Diego Padres and Freddie Freeman of the Atlanta Braves.

Let me know who you have winning which award.

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: October 31, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The Major League Baseball season ended four days ago with the Los Angeles Dodgers claiming the short season World Series over the Tampa Bay Rays. Now four days may not seem like a lot of time, but teams are already shaping their roster s for the hopefully 162 game 2021 season.

These past few days teams have been making decisions on which players will have the option years on their contracts picked up for the 2021 and which players will be allowed to go into free agency. In some cases a player has to be bought out of that final year of his contract by a team before he can become a free agent. There where no big time players that where allowed to go into free agency, but there where quite a few names that people will know that will be entering the free agent market. Let’s take a look at a few of the players that are now free agents.

I mentioned the Rays earlier and they where one of the teams who have decided not to pick up contract options on a couple of players we just saw contribute to them getting to the World Series. Catcher Mike Zunino and starting pitcher Charlie Morton didn’t have their contract picked up by Tampa Bay and they are now both free agents.

Zunino was scheduled to make $4.5 Million dollar in 2021 while Morton salary for 2021 would’ve been $15 million dollars. Now Tampa Bay has expressed interest in trying to bring both players back, but that may be a tough task to achieve. I think that Tampa Bay has a better chance of bringing Zunino back than they do Morton.

Zunino is a power hitting catcher who has improved defensively in his two seasons with the Rays. Zunino has split time with Michael Perez behind the plate while with the Rays and you have to wonder if Tampa Bay thinks Perez might be ready to take over full time in 2021. If that’s the case the Rays would probably like to see Zunino accept a pay cut to return.

Now getting Morton to comeback for less money might be a little more difficult as it appears as though he’s going to have quite a few teams interested in his services.

Morton also spent two season with Tampa Bay. He made 42 starts for them and was 18-8 with an ERA of 3.33, but Morton really showed his value in the post season. With the exception of that final World Series start Morton was lights out. He didn’t allow a run in his two American League Championship Series starts and only gave up one run in his Wild Card Series start.

Now there has been some talk before the shortened 2020 season that Morton would retire, but since it wasn’t a full season maybe Morton would like to comeback for one more run. If he is interested their will be a number of contending teams interested in trying to sign him and he might get more than the $15 million dollars he was set to make on his contract option with the Rays. I’m sure Tampa Bay would want him back for less money, but Morton may have other options.

Another starting pitcher who’s contract option wasn’t picked up was Jon Lester of the Chicago Cubs, but I don’t think anyone is surprised by that. Lester’s option was for $25 million dollars and he’s no longer carries that kind of dollar value as a starting pitcher. Now before you feel too bad for Lester his contract contained a $10 million dollar buyout; so he was paid quite well just to go into free agency.

After the Cubs announced they wouldn’t be picking up Lester’s option they made it very clear that they would like him to return and I think they’ll have a good chance of bringing him back. I just can’t see a team offering Lester anywhere near the $25 million dollars he was scheduled to make in 2021; so he’d probably like to stay with a team he’s familiar with.

Lester went 3-3 in 12 starts for the Cubs in 2020 and posted an ERA of 5.16. Unfortunately the Cubs didn’t hang around in the post season long enough for Lester to make a start for them there in 2020.

The Cubs like a lot of major league teams are short on starting pitching; so bringing Lester back makes sense for them; they’d just like to do it at a reduced rate.

There where also a couple of other players who have been with there teams for their entire career that now find themselves on the free agent market after their long time teams didn’t pick up contract options on them.

Brett Gardner who’s spent his entire 13 year career with the New York Yankees and Ryan Braun who has been with the Milwaukee Brewers for 14 seasons both find themselves on the free agent market.

It’s not a huge surprise that the Yankees would let Garner go into free agency. Gardner was due to make $10 million dollars in 2021 which isn’t a huge sum for a team like the Yankees to carry, but it appears that the Yankees would like to final open up an outfield spot for Clint Frazier to play full time. It’s difficult to see Gardner playing for another team and I’m sure the Yankees would be willing to bring him back as a 4th outfielder with a smaller salary number, but will have to wait and see if that happens.

Braun had a $15 million dollar mutual option that the Brewers decide to not renew on their end. Instead Braun will be given a $4 million dollar buyout and be allowed to become a free agent.

It will be interesting to see what happens to Braun as a free agent. Milwaukee is a small market team and with the exception of a player here and there they don’t hand out big contracts and they also prefer to stick with younger players; so a soon to be 37 year old Braun might not fit into their plans, but could he fit into someone else’s? While it’s doubtful Braun could be an everyday outfielder at this point in his career he could be an interesting pick up for an American League team as a designated hitter and part time outfielder. Where do you see Braun playing in 2021?

The Cleveland Indians decided to not pick up the contract options on three of their players. Domingo Santana, Carlos Santana and Bad Hand, but they did pick up the option year on catcher Robert Perez’s contract.

Now I wouldn’t be surprise if both of the Santana’s end up back in an Indians uniform for the 2021 season, but Hand should have some other teams taking a good long look at him and the Indians probably wouldn’t try to match an bigger contract offer that Hand might get.

It’s interesting that the Indians decided to pay Hand a $1 million dollar buyout instead of picking up his $10 million dollar salary for next season especially since he led all of baseball in saves with 16 in 2020. In the three seasons he spent with Cleveland Hand recorded 58 saves in his time there and posted an ERA of 2.78.

There are a lot of teams that will be in the market for a closer this off season; so it won’t be a big surprise f Hand actually gets a better contract than the $10 million dollars he was scheduled to get from the Indians.

Let me know where you think these now free agents might land? Do you see them going to new teams? Or do you have them resigning for less money with the team that just let them go?

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 28, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

The NBA Finals ended on October 11th when the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Miami Heat 106-93 to win the series four games to two. Now the NBA wants to start the 2020-21 season on Christmas day and apparently “The King” Lebron James might not be too happy about that.

Lakers forward Dany Green was on a podcast and mentioned that if the NBA does start the season on Christmas day he expect James and a few other veteran player to sit out the first month of the season.

Now the NBA has a big, big money television contract that says they have to play at least 72 regular season games; so a Christmas day start date makes sense. If they end up starting later they’d have to squeeze in those 72 games in a much shorter timeframe.

Now what I’m having trouble understanding is why is this an issue? The Lakers and the Heat would’ve been off for two and a half months, but Green made it seem like that wasn’t enough time off. Unfortunately he never really explained why; so we’re left to guess.

My guess is that the players are selfish and they want that big money, but they don’t want to play the actually games to get it. Now this doesn’t go for all the players in the NBA just the ones that would take that first month of the regular season off.

Now don’t forget that James complained about the All-Star break not being long enough; so the NBA gave it to him. Now the All-Star break is a week long. Remember James wanted that extra time to spend with his family, but then that first year the NBA extended the All-Star break James spent time in Miami with his buddies and then went to a Dallas Cowboys game. Sounds like family time to me.

What these players don’t seem to realize is that no one is watching their games anymore. Just take a look at how far down the ratings fell during the NBA Finals and for that matter the ratings fell for all of the games played in the bubble. Now the NBA got that big money television deal based on their ratings doing well for the networks that they’re games are shown on. With the ratings in the tank do they think that the next television contract is going to be for as much money as this last one was. Of course there isn’t a player out their that’s going to take a pay cut when that smaller television money is offered to them.

Now I’ve mentioned many times that I’ve lost all interest in the NBA and judging by the ratings I’m not the only one. Imagine what the ratings would be if players like James sit out the first month of next season. If they couldn’t get fans to tune in to watch James win a championship he was pretty much handed; how are they going to get fans to watch with star players not playing? I’d love to know an answer to that.

I get that the NBA is a players league and they’ve bowed down to James before; so it will be interesting to see if he pushes for a later start date if the NBA gives in again. It’s really not a good look for any league when one player has so much power.

On Sunday NASCAR started the Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, but only got 52 laps in before the rain came. Now they tried to wait out the rain on Sunday, but where unable to get the rest of the race in. They had originally planned to finish the race on Monday, but the weather wouldn’t allow that either; so they moved it to Tuesday. Well you guess it the weather still didn’t cooperate and they had to postpone the race again. Now the race is scheduled to finally restart at 2:00 p.m. (CST) today; weather permitting.

In case you don’t remember Clint Bowyer was leading the race when the rains came on Sunday. He’s followed by Jimmie Johnson in 2nd, Eric Jones in 3rd, Joey Logano in 4th and Martin Truex Jr rounds out the Top 5 in 5th place.

There are still 282 laps to go; so the running will probably change few times over. That is if the weather allows them to actually finish the race today.

Are you going to watch?

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: October 24, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

Now I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t understand the Los Angeles Dodgers pitching strategy going into Game 2 of the World Series. I didn’t like the idea of having what their manager Dave Roberts called “a Bullpen game” and in the end I was right. The Dodgers used seven pitchers and even though their offense tried to keep them in the game they got down early and ended up losing Game 2 by a 6-4 score.

Fortunately it doesn’t seem as any of the other things I was concerned about are going to happen. By pretty much giving Game 2 away I was afraid that the Dodgers would allow the Tampa Bay Rays a chance to build some momentum heading into Game 3, but any advantage the Rays had was quickly taken away from them by the pitching of Walker Buehler.

Buehler gave the Dodgers 6 dominant innings in Game 6. He set a record by striking out 10 batters over those six innings. He did give up 1 run which was meaningless as was the 1 walk he had while giving up 3 hits and throwing 93 pitches. If the series goes that long it would be difficult to bet against Buehler in a Game 7.

On the other side of the pitching line Charlie Morton had his worst 2020 post season start in Game 3. Morton gave up 5 runs on 7 hits while lasting just 4 1/3rd innings against a tough Dodgers offense. Morton did pick up 6 strikeouts while walking 1 and allowing 1 home runs and throwing 91 pitches.

The Dodgers got on the scoreboard early with a Justin Turner solo home run in the 1st. They then proceeded to add two runs in the 3rd and 4th innings to take a 5-0 lead and basically put the game away. The Dodgers added a run in the 6th innings while the Rays scored in the 5th and the 9th, but they never got close to a comeback as the Dodgers took Game 3 by a 6-2 final.

Last nights win gives the Dodgers a two games to one lead in the series heading into tonight’s Game 4. The Dodgers are going to start Julio Urias; who I thought should’ve started Game 2 while the Rays are going with Ryan Yarbrough.

Neither one of these young starting pitchers have been allowed to throw very many innings this post season; so it will be interesting how long they last in tonight’s start.

Urias has pitched in four post season games and has managed to get the win in all four of those games, but he’s only thrown 16 innings. His last appearance was against the Atlanta Braves on October 18th when he worked 3 innings throwing 39 pitches. As for Yarbrough he last pitched on October 20th against the Dodgers, but he only pitched 2/3rds of an inning and threw just 19 pitches. Yarbrough has made three post season appearance for Tampa Bay. He’s pitched 10 2/3rd post season innings giving up 11 hits 3 of which have been home runs. He’s allowed 4 runs to score while striking out 6 and walking 3.

How do you see Game 4 going tonight? Do you see the Dodgers taking a big three games to one advantage? Or can Tampa Bay even things up? I’d also like to know which starting pitcher you think will have the better outing tonight?

Now as someone who roots for the Seattle Seahawks I couldn’t of been happier when I heard that Antonio Brown had signed for the remainder of the season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

I understand that may sound weird to some people, but if you think about it while Brown was at one time in his career a top wide receiver in the NFL he has proven that he is a cancer to any team he’s on. Somehow Brown has seemed to have issues on three different teams that are coached by Super Bowl winners. Brown’s issues with the Pittsburgh Steelers led him to be traded to the Oakland Raiders who he never played a regular season game for. From Oakland he went to New England where he played one game before his off field problems led to him being released after playing just one game for the Patriots. That means Brown has had some type of issues with teams run by Mike Tomlin, Jon Gruden and Bill Belichick. That’s a pretty impressive list of coach’s to have problems with.

Now Brown reunites with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay and I’m sure they’re hoping that Brady will be the one who’s able to keep Brown under control. The Buccaneers are coached by Bruce Arians who is in his second year with Tampa Bay. Arians doesn’t have a Super Bowl win on his resume like the other coaches Brown has played for; so right away you have to wonder if Brown couldn’t respect a coach that’s won a Super Bowl do a coach like Arians stand a chance?

You have to think this is a disaster in the making and like I mentioned earlier; I’m glad he didn’t sign with the Seahawks.

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 21, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in sports

With 28 Major League Baseball teams working on their off season plan the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays are playing the World Series in Arlington Texas at the new home of the Texas Rangers; Globe Life Park. This is the first time in the history of baseball that the World Series is being played at a neutral site.

Game 1 was last night and the Dodgers had Clayton Kershaw ready to make the start while the Rays turned to Tyler Glasnow. Kershaw has been the best pitcher in baseball for probably the past 10 seasons, but he’s had his share of post season struggles and everyone really seems to like to talk about those.

Kershaw came into last nights start with a post season ERA of 4.22, but a struggle was the last thing Kershaw had last night. Kershaw threw 78 pitches over 6 innings for the Dodgers last night. He gave up 2 hits and one run while walking 1 and striking out 8. The only blemish on Kershaw’s start was a Kevin Kiermaier home run.

The Rays have had their offensive issues this post season and with Kershaw rolling along this led to an easy 8-3 Game 1 win for the Dodgers.

The Dodgers jumped out to a lead in the bottom of the 4th inning when Cody Bellinger hit a two run home run to right centerfield.

Kiermaier cut the Dodgers lead in half in the top of the 5th inning when he hit a solo home run off of Kershaw to right field with two outs in the inning.

The Dodgers got that run back plus more in the bottom of the 5th inning. Mookie Betts walked and then stole second. Corey Seager also drew a walk to put runners on 1st and 2nd. Justin Turner struck out for the first out of the inning, but during his at bat Betts stole third while Seager stole second. Max Muncy grounded into a fielder choice scoring Betts and moving Seager to third. Will Smith singled in Seager and Muncy went to third on Smith’s hit. Ryan Yarbourgh was called out of the Rays bullpen and got Bellinger to pop out for the second out. Chris Taylor singled scoring Muncy while Smith advanced to second. Kiki Hernandez pinch hit for Joc Pedersen and singled scoring Smith and moving Taylor up to second, but Austin Barnes flied to left field for the final out of the inning. The Dodgers picked up 4 runs and3 hits in the inning and took a 6-1 lead.

Betts led off the bottom of the 6th inning with a solo home run to right field to give the Dodgers a 7-1 lead. Then Turner and Muncy hit back to back doubles with Muncy’s double driving Turner in to make it a 8-1 game.

Manuel Margot singled to centerfield with one out in the top of the 7th inning. Joey Wendle then followed with a double and Margot advanced to third. Mike Brosseau pinch hit for Ji-Man Choi and singled home Margot with Wendle moving up to third. Kiermaier then singled home Wendle while Brosseau moved up to second to make it an 8-3 game. Mike Zunino lined out back to the pitcher and Brosseau was doubled off of second base to end the Rays inning.

that was it for the scoring on the night as Pedro Baez worked a 1,2,3 8th inning for the Dodgers and Joe Kelly worked a 1,2,3 9th inning as the Dodgers took Game 1 by an 8-3 final score.

Kershaw got the win (W) while Glasnow took the loss (L). Glasnow pitched 4 1/3rd inning. He gave up 6 runs on just 3 hits, but he walked 6, but he did strike out 8 while throwing 112 pitches.

Game 2 is tonight and Tampa Bay will send Blake Snell to the mound to make the start while Los Angeles counters with Tony Gonsolin.

Now Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has already said that Game 2 will be a bullpen game; so who knows how long Gonsolin will actually pitch. The Dodgers used for relievers last night, but none of them threw more than 15 pitches; so the entire Dodgers bullpen should be available for Game 2.

Do you see the Dodgers taking a 2-0 lead in the series tonight or can Snell pitch the Rays back to a 1-1 even series?

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

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