Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: January 10, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

We’re just a little over a month away from pitchers and catchers reporting to start spring training and we’re still waiting for any of the big name free agent to sign, especially a starting pitcher.

Now there are three starting pitchers drawing the most interest are Yu Darvish, Jake Arrieta and Alex Cobb. Darvish has actually sat down and met with a couple of teams, but I don’t believe he’s been offered a contract. The Chicago Cubs offered Cobb a 3 year deal worth $42 million dollars, but he turned the offer down. As for Arrieta, there’s been little or no mention of him talking to any teams.  If he’s having meetings it’s being kept under wraps.

Darvish has not put any demands out there for teams to meet but Cobb and Arrieta have. Cobb has said that he wants $20 million dollars a season or will accept a deal of 4 years at $70 million dollars as long as all of the money is guaranteed. While Arrieta has made it clear that he wants a contract that totals at least $200 million dollars.

As we get closer and closer to spring training you have to wonder how far these pitchers will take their demands. Would Cobb or Arrieta be willing to sit out the start of the season if they can’t get the contract they’re looking for?  On the other side, will a contender who might feel they’re one starting pitcher away, break down and give in to the demands of one of these starters.

You have to think that when one of these starters finally sign with a team, the other two may follow suit very quickly.  The one issue that might possibly hang up any of these pitchers getting contract offers is how serious are the Pittsburgh Pirates are about trading Gerrit Cole.

Cole is a 27 year old top of the rotation starter that a team would have control of until 2020. Cole made 33 starts and logged 203 innings which is difficult to find these days. You have to think that a team would rather deal a few of their top prospects to get a pitcher like Cole than lock up a Darvish, Arrieta or Cobb to long term contracts for big money. If the Pirates are actually serious about trading Cole a move like that will hold up the free agent pitching market even more than it has been.

The only free agent movement we’ve had in the last few days was the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim agreeing to terms with veteran catcher Rene Rivera on a 1 year contract.

Rivera will get $2.8 million dollars on his deal with the Angels and be added to their mix of catchers. Martin Maldonado won the Gold Glove last season and you have to figure he’s the starter behind the plate. You have to think that Rivera was brought in to back up Maldonado, but the Angels also have Curt Casali who spent four seasons with the Tampa Bay Rays. Los Angeles also has young catchers Juan Graterol and Carlos Perez.

It’s not much free agent movement, but it is something for baseball fans, if you’re a Rene Rivera fan.

We didn’t get off to a blazing start with our picks for the playoffs. Schaumburg Stu, Mr. Fantasy and I went 2-2 for the Wild Card week while Dan the Man ended up going 1-3. I guess will see how we do in the Divisional round of the playoffs this week.

The Oakland Raiders finally made it official and named Jon Gruden as their head coach. Not that we didn’t know that Gruden would be the Raiders next coach now for about a week, but the team finally made the announcement.

While it was no surprise that the Raiders hired Gruden it was a bit of a surprise that the Chicago Bears where the next team to name a new head coach. The Bears named Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy as their head coach.

Nagy is 39 years old and has been part of Andy Reid’s coaching staff since 2009. Nagy started with the Philadelphia Eagles as an Interim coach in 2009. In 2010 he was promoted to a coaches assistant and then in 2011 he was promoted again to offensive quality coach. When Reid took over the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013 Nagy went with him and was named Quarterback’s coach. In 2016 Nagy was named the Chiefs offensive coordinator, but Reid continued to call plays for the Chiefs until the final 5 games of the 2017 season.

Nagy never played in the NFL, but did play 6 seasons in the Arena Football League. The Eagles actually did try to sign Nagy as  back up quarterback in 2009 when Kevin Kolb got hurt, but the NFL disapproved his contract and the Eagles never made another attempt to re-sign him and just kept him on as a coach.

Alex Smith is coming off of his best season in the NFL and the Bears are hoping that Nagy will be ale to develop their young quarterback Mitchell Trubisky.  It’s being reported that Nagy will handle play calling duties for the Bears offense; so he’ll be working directly with Trubisky.

There haven’t been any announcements on who will be joining Nagy’s coaching staff, but the Bears have made it very clear that they want to bring defensive coordinator Vic Fangio back.

Fangio interviewed for the Bears head coaching position and has drawn interest from quite a few other teams as a defensive coordinator.

If he does indeed return to the Bears, Fangio will once again lead a defensive unit that ranked just 24th in points allowed but 14th in defensive DVOA, an indication the club was better on a play-by-play basis than overall.

With the Raiders and the Bears finding new head coaches there are still four teams looking for head coaches. The Detroit Lions, New York Giants, Arizona Cardinals and the Indianapolis Colts still have head coaching openings.

Depending on who these teams are looking at to fill their vacancies will be the deciding factor on how long it takes them to name a new coach. While coaches on playoff teams can be interviewed for open positions they can’t be named as that teams new head coach until the team they’re coaching for is knocked out of the playoffs. Of course with the way things get leaked I’m sure will know if a team is planning on hiring a coach from a playoff team.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live in BlogTalkRadio.com, but the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com

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

 

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How was your week

Posted: January 6, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

If your a baseball fan it’s been a slow off season for you. There haven’t been a lot of big signings or trades and right now everything seems stagnant. It’s difficult to pick one thing that has made the off season go like this, but here are a couple of things holding up player movement.

The Miami Marlins fire sale. While Giancarlo Stanton and Marcel Ozuna have been traded away there are a few assets Miami still has that other teams are interested. Why would a team go out and sign an older veteran player to a long term big money deal when they can deal for a young player like Christian Yelich or J.T. Realmuto. Yelich is signed to an incredibly team friendly deal through the year 2022. Realmuto is just entering salary arbitration and won’t be eligible for free agency until 2021. Yelich is 25 years old while Realmuto is 26; so while you’d have to give up some of your young prospects to land one of these guys it’s still a cheaper option for a team than handed a guy a 7 year $200 million dollar contract.

Big name players keep popping up in trade talks. Again this started with the Marlins and Stanton, but we’ve seen some other big names come up on the trade market. Right now the name floating round is Manny Machado. Now if a team was to acquire Machado he might only be with them for one season as he as eligible to be a free agent after the 2018 season, but if he helped your team win a World Series would it be worth it? Another name that popped up very quickly was Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Zach Greinke. Nothing seemed to go very far with Greinke involved, but just the fact that his name came up will draw interest from teams.

Contract demands might be too high. Jake Arrieta and J.D. Martinez have told teams that they’re both looking for contracts that total in value over $200 million dollars. Another pitcher who was thought to draw a lot of interest as a free agent was Alex Cobb, but Cobb has let it be know that he wants $20 million dollars a season. I did see that Cobb has altered his contract demands a little. He is now saying that he’ll accept a 4 year deal at $70 million dollars as long as that money is guaranteed. While I don’t believe that there are any teams in financial distress these type of contracts do eliminate most if not all of the small market teams from signing these players. These kind of deals are also big commitments for teams and there are times that these contracts blow up in a teams face when the player on this deal is in his late 30’s or in some cases early 40’s.

Now I do believe that hitters will still get their money, but with the way pitching has changed will these starters get the long term big money deals they’re looking for.

Let’s use Cobb as our example. He’s never made 30 starts in a season. He missed the entire 2015 season due to injury. He’s never pitched more than 179 1/3rd innings in a season. Over his career Cobb has averaged 6 innings a start and while his stats are solid and he appears to be a top of the rotation starter; is he worth $20 million dollars a season?

Those are three of the reasons the free agent market has been so slow. I think that once one of the top tier free agents gets signed will see quite a few players start to sign. The question is when will that top free agent sign.

We did have a three team trade this week. In the deal the Los Angeles Dodgers acquired left handed pitcher Scott Alexander and infielder Jake Peter. The Kansas City Royals picked up right handed pitcher Trevor Oaks and infielder Erick Mejia. While the Chicago White Sox ended up with a pair of veteran right handed relievers as Joakim Soria and Luis Avilan go to Chicago. The White Sox will also get $1 million dollars from the Royals and $2 million dollars from the Dodgers in this deal.

It seems that the name everyone is interested in with this deal is Alexander. Alexander is 28 years old and 2017 was his first full season in the majors. He made 58 relief appearances for the Royals last season covering 69 innings. He was 5-4 with 4 saves and a 2.48 E.R.A. He strikes out a little over two batters to ever one he walks and his WHIP was 1.304 last season. Alexander has been compared to Baltimore Orioles left hander Zach Britton and he’ll be part of the Dodgers bullpen for 2018.

With the NFL playoffs kicking off a little later today it appears as though the Oakland Raiders have their new head coach. As soon as the Raiders fired Jack Del Rio the reports where out there that they believed they could finally get Jon Gruden to come out of the television booth and take their head coaching job.

Now it looks like that’s the case, but it doesn’t appear that it will be official until Tuesday. The Raiders have a press conference scheduled for Tuesday where they will introduce Gruden as their new head coach. Reports are that Gruden’s contract will for 10 years and over $100 million dollars. Believe it or not this isn’t the first time that a head coach has gotten a 10 year deal. The other two time it was the Dallas Cowboys handing out those 10 year deals. Back in 1964 they gave one to Tom Landry and then again in 1989 Jimmy Johnson was given a 10 year deal.

Gruden coached the Raiders from 1998 to 2001. He was 38-26 and won the AGC West in his final two seasons. Under Gruden the Raiders went 0-2 in the playoffs. After his 4th season Raiders owner Al Davis traded Gruden to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Tampa Bay gave up two 1st round picks, two 2nd round picks and $8 million dollars in cash to get Gruden, but he did win a Super Bowl his year as their head coach.

Gruden hasn’t coached since 2008, but has stayed involved with the NFL as a commentator for ESPN. Gruden has been the color analyst for Monday Night Football since 2009, but has also called some college football games. ESPN also gave Gruden his own little series called Jon Gruden’s QB Camp. In the series Gruden goes over the NFL development process with prospective quarterbacks.

Do you like this move for the Raiders? What are your thoughts on give a head coach a 10 year contract. Feel free to let me know in the comments.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is available for you to listen to anytime you want at TuneIn.com

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: January 3, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

It’s time for the playoffs to start in the NFL. Things kickoff on Saturday as the Tennessee Titans visit the Kansas City Chiefs. The other Saturday game has the Los Angeles Rams hosting the Atlanta Falcons. Then of course there are two games on Sunday. The first game has the Jacksonville Jaquars hosting the Buffalo Bills. The second game on Sunday will see the Carolina Panthers visiting the New Orleans Saints.

In the AFC the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers got 1st round byes. Over in the NFC the Philadelphia Eagles and the Minnesota Vikings received the 1st round byes.

Let’s see if we can break these games down a little bit.

Kansas City definitely had and up and won season. They came out of the gate 5-0 and where on everybody’s list of Super Bowl favorites. After dropping a couple of games they bounced back with a division win and things looked like they where back on track. The Chiefs then stumbled losing their next 4 games in a row. They got things going in the right direction to end the season as they won their final 4 games and won the AFC West.

Tennessee was high on everybody’s list to win the AFC South, but they never seemed to get things going. The Titans where 2-3 before going on a 4 game winning streak. After that ended they did out two more wins together and ha a chance to really lock up a playoff spot, but they lost their final 3 games heading into Week 17. Tennessee faced a win and your in situation in Week 17 and they got the win to grab a wild card spot an advance into the playoffs.

Looking at the way these teams seasons have went it appears as though Kansas City is headed back in the right direction coming into this match up. Can Tennessee build on their win and in game to surprise the Chiefs?

The Atlanta Falcons where the NFC’s representative in the Super Bowl last season and coming out of the gate with 3 straight wins this season they looked like a contender to return there. The Falcons really struggled and lost 4 of their net 5 games and there was talk that they wouldn’t even get into the playoffs. The Falcons went 6-2 in the second half of the season and grabbed a wild card spot and will have a chance to return to the Super Bowl.

The Los Angeles Rams under first year coach Sean McVay have been one of the nicer surprises this NFL season. The Rams feature some young skill position players; so there where questions about how they would perform. A 4 game winning streak in the middle of the season solidified the Rams as a playoff contender. The Rams picked up big wins in Week 15 and Week 16 to lockdown the NFC West and it allowed them to rest key players the final week of the regular season.

This match should show us how much playoff experience means in a first round playoff match up. The Rams key offensive players Jared Goff, Todd Gurley, Robert Woods and Sammy Watkins have never played in a playoff game. While players like Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and Devonta Freeman played in the Super Bowl last season. How much will this factor in?

Andy Dalton and Tyler Boyd are two of the most popular NFL players in Buffalo these days and they don’t even play for the Bills. Of course it was the Dalton pass to Boyd that helped the Cincinnati Bengals beat the Baltimore Ravens and get the Bills into the playoffs as a wild card team.

The Bills won 9 games over the 2018 season, but never won more than 2 in a row. LeSean McCoy accounts for over 30% of the Bills offense; so he’ll be the big key to them having a shot to advance this weekend. It’s no shock at all that McCoy was the Bills leading rusher. but he also led the team in pass receptions with 59 and was 2nd on the team in receiving yards with 448.

The Jacksonville Jaquars where another surprise team this season/ Remember heading into the last week of pre-season they decided to make a quarterback change, but decided to go back to Blake Bortles for Week 1. Bortles had a solid season and threw just 13 interceptions and while that’s still a higher number than the team would like it’s down from his previous seasons. The Jaquars are built to win with defense and their run game; so that’s how they’ll try to get out of the 1st round.

You have to think that if Jacksonville can stop McCoy they’ll win, but if Buffalo can force Bortles into some mistakes maybe they can pull off an upset here. Which way do you see it going?

The Carolina Panthers are considered the wild card team in this match up; so they’ll be on the road. Carolina has faced the Saints two other times this season and lost both of those natch ups. The Panthers actually lost both of those games by double digits, 21 in the first match up and 10 in the second. While rookie Christian McCaffrey has been a big contributor on offense for the Panthers this season everyone knows that the Panthers live and die by how Cam Newton plays. Newton was the M.V.P. two seasons ago and led the Panthers to the Super Bowl. He struggled last season and Carolina watched the playoffs. Which Newton will we get this weekend?

The New Orleans saints found a running game this season and it helped lead them to an NFC South division title. Interestingly the Saints just don’t have one running back that teams have to deal with they have two. Mark Ingram led the ground game with 1124 yards, but rookie Alvin Kamara added 728 rushing yards. Ingram put up 12 rushing touchdowns this season, but Kamara added 8 of his own. Kamara caught 81 passes while Ingram grabbed 58. Now Ingram didn’t find his way into the end zone as a receiver, but Kamara did catch 5 receiving touchdowns. The duel threat backfield has helped in other areas. Michael Thomas had a 100 plus catch, 1000 plus yard season. The running game has also cut down on Drew Brees’ passing attempts.

It’s difficult to beat a team three times in a season, but that’s what the Saints will have to do if they want to get out of the 1st round. Can Newton lead his team to what would be a 1st round upset?

Feel free to let me know how you’ve got this weekend in the comment section.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: December 30, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

While we’re waiting for the top starting pitchers to sign as free agents the top closer on the market has signed a new deal. Wade Davis inked a three year deal with the Colorado Rockies.

Davis will be paid $52 million dollars for those three seasons, but the contract has a vesting options for a fourth year that would make the total value of his deal $66 million dollars. Davis will earn $16 million dollars for the 2018 season. His salary goes up to $18 million dollars for the 2019 season and then drop down to $17 million dollars for the 2020 season. The fourth year option in Davis’ contract would be worth $15 million dollars for the 2021 season if it kicks in. The deal also includes a $1 million dollar assignment bonus of Davis is traded. Interestingly if Davis is traded one time he will then have a full no trade rights.

After spending his entire career in the American League Davis pitched for the Chicago Cubs in 2017. Davis went 4-2 with an E.R.A. of 2.30 while saving 32 games. Davis pitched 58 2/3rd innings striking out 79 batters while walking 28. Davis did give up 6 home runs last season and that was the most he had ever giving up as a reliever in a season. We’ll have to see how he does closing the majority of his games in Colorado, but he was clearly the best closer on the free agent market this off season.

With the signing of Davis it would appear that the Rockies won’t be bringing Greg Holland back. Holland served as the Rockies closer for the 2017 season and even thought he had some struggles in the second half of the season he still had good numbers for them,

Holland missed all of the 2016 season after having Tommy John surgery, but bounced back to pitch in 61 games for Colorado covering 57 1/3rd innings. Holland was 3-6 with an E.R.A. of 3.61 while saving 41 games last season. Those 41 saves tied Holland with Kenley Jansen of the Los Angeles Dodgers for the National League lead. Holland struck out 70 batters while walking 26 last season, but of course pitching in Colorado he gave up a career high 7 home runs.

Holland declined the $15 million dollar option in his contract for the 2018 season and he also turned down the $17.4 million dollar qualifying off the Rockies offered him. Davis also rejected a 2018 qualifying offer; so he’ll cost the Rockies a pick in the 2018 draft with his signing.

Since the Rockies have never seemed to have success bringing in top starting pitchers they’re going to stick with their plan of building a strong bullpen which helped get them into the wild card game last season.

Davis will be added to a Colorado bullpen that also added set up man Bryan Shaw on a three year $25 million dollar deal with an option for a fourth year. The Rockies also brought back left hander Jake McGee who has pitched for them the past two seasons. McGee also signed a three year deal worth $25 million dollars with a fourth year option to stay with the Rockies. Don’t forget that the Rockies still have Mike Dunn who they signed last season to a three year $18 million dollar deal with a fourth year option when he was a free agent last off season.

While it looks like the Rockies bullpen will be solid and since they do play 81 games in Colorado their offense should also be good, but they question always is, do they have good enough starting pitching to win? Colorado got into the wild card game last season; so will see if they can find there way back into the playoffs in 2018.

We’re headed into the last week final week of the NFL’s regular season and I’m sure you’ve been wondering how we’re doing with our picks since I haven’t mentioned in a while. Here’s what it looks like for us heading into Week 17.

Dan the Man is in the lead at 164-76 and unless he just completely collapses should win this season. Mr. Fantasy is in 2nd place with a record of 159-81. I am currently holding on to 3rd place with a record of 154-86, but Schaumburg Stu is just two games behind me at 152-88. While it doesn’t look like any one will catch Dan the Man the other three spots are still up for grabs.

Very much like the NFL does we will wipe the slate clean next week as we head into the playoffs; so everybody gets a fresh start.

While it most of the playoff spots are locked down there are still openings for one more wild card team in each Conference. There could also be some juggling of the seeds in the NFC depending on the outcome of some of the games, but it’s going to take a well played out scenario for that to happen. Let’s just focus on those two last wild card spots.

In the AFC all the Tennessee Titans have to do is win and they’re in. The Titans, Los Angeles Chargers and Buffalo Bills are all 8-7 going into the final week of the season, but the Titans hold the tiebreaker over those two teams due to having the better winning percentage in conference games.

Tennessee is facing the Jacksonville Jaquars tomorrow, but the Jaquars are already locked into the #3 seed; so will have to see if they’ll rest players or if they try to keep the Titans out of the playoffs. Way back in Week 3 the Titans beat the Jaquars 37-16; so maybe Jacksonville wants some revenge.

If the Titans do lose the Chargers would be the next team ion line for that wild card spot. The Chargers hold the tiebreaker over the Bills since they beat them in their Week 11 match up 54-24. The Chargers are facing the Oakland Raiders this week.

Now for the Bills to get that wild card spot they would need some help. They’d need both the Titans and the Chargers to lose their games and then Buffalo would need to get a win over the Miami Dolphins. While I doubt it had any affect on where these teams are now it is kind of humorous that the Bills started Nathan Peterman in that Week 11 match up the Chargers and he threw 5 interceptions before halftime in that loss.

There are two teams in the NFC looking to claim that last wild card spot. It’s down to the Atlanta Falcons and the Seattle Seahawks with the Falcons being the team that controls their own destiny.

Atlanta faces the Carolina Panthers in Week 17 and if they win they’re in. Now Carolina is part of that odd scenario that could see them end up as the #2 seed and receive a 1st round bye; so they are playing for something. That along with the fact that Carolina can still win the NFC South. With all of this playing out you have to figure that the Panthers won’t be resting players and this will be a competitive game. In week 8 the Panthers beat the Falcons 20-17.

The Seahawks will need that Atlanta loss and a win over the Arizona Cardinals to get into the playoffs as a wild card team. Atlanta holds the tiebreaker over the Seahawks; so If they end up with the same record the Falcons get in. The Seahawks beat the Cardinals 22-16 back in Week 9.

While there aren’t a ton of reasons to watch the final week of the NFL season there are a few teams that still have something to play for.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast in BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you on TuneIn.com.

Please follow me on Twitter @Burketime

 

How was your week

Posted: December 23, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Slowly but surly we’re starting to see more and more Major League teams add the players they need to fill out their rosters. Now while all of these signings are going on we’re still waiting for some of the bigger name free agents to sign.

It was expected that the free agent market would be a little slow as teams waited to see if and where Giancarlo Stanton would end up. Now Stanton was traded a couple of weeks ago and there still hasn’t be a ton of movement with the top named free agents. Why could that be?

Right now it seems like teams are more interested in exploring trade options rather than signing a free agent. There are some big names that might be available as trade pieces. The Manny Machado talk has been out there for a little while now and Gerrit Cole’s name has came up in the last few days. There has also been some reports that the Pittsburgh Pirates might do more of a complete tear down meaning players like Josh Harrison and Andrew McCutcheon would be available. Tis could be one of the reasons we haven’t seen a big name free agent signed, but there are a few more.

It’s possible that pitchers like Alex Cobb and Jake Arrieta have priced themselves out of the market. It’s been reported that Cobb wants a deal for a minimum of $20 million dollars a season while Arrieta wants a contract that totals $200 million dollars. While starting pitching is always going to be expensive and top starting pitching is going to be even more expensive these are big contract numbers for a couple of starters that there are questions about.

Cobb has never started more than 29 games in a season and the most innings he’s every thrown in a season is 179 1/3rd, both last year. With the price tag Cobb has out on himself teams may want a pitcher who can give them at least 200 innings.

Arrieta was the best pitcher in baseball in 2015 and has consistently made 30 plus starts since that season, but his E.R.A, is headed in the wrong direction. Now I don’t think anyone expected him to repeat the 1.77 E.R.A. he posted in 2015, but in 2016 his E.R.A. jumped to 3.10 and then last season his E.R.A. went up to 3.53. Now there’s actually nothing wrong with either of those E.R.A. numbers, but the fact that they seem to be trending up might be an issue for teams.

As for position players it looked as though Eric Hosmer was on a lot of teams radar, but them the sabermetric community chimed in and it seems as though some teams dropped their interest in him. Hosmer tied his career high in home runs with 25 last season while posting his highest batting average for a season at .318 while playing in all 162 games. There have been a few 1st baseman that have signed recently, but they weren’t asking for or going to get the kind of money Hosmer will eventually get. The question now is who’s going to give him that contract as it appears the only real suitor he has ate the San Diego Padres.

J.D. Martinez was the top everyday player on the free agent market coming into the off season, but there has been very little if any interest shown in him right now. Last season playing for the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks Martinez hit 45 home runs and drove in 104 RBI’s while hitting .303. Martinez has also mentioned some big contract demands as he’s looking for a deal in the range of $200 million dollars. The Boston Red Sox have seemed to be the team front and center when there comes to talk about where Martinez would end up, but the Red Sox have a pretty full outfield; so you’d have to think that one of them would have to be moved before Martinez could be brought in.

Yu Darvish is the other big name pitcher out there, but he seems to be closer to signing than any of the other top free agents. Darvish had meetings with the Chicago Cubs and the Houston Astros this week and there where actually reports that Darvish was close to signing with the Cubs, but he denied that. Out of the bigger name free agents out there it appears as though Darvish will be the first to sign with a team.

Where do you see these players signing? and what kind of money do you think that they’re going to end up getting?

It may sound weird, but the Los Angeles Rams lost a key player when they had to place Kicker Greg Zuelien on injured reserve with a back injury. Zuerlein will have surgery in Los Angeles on Thursday morning to repair a herniated disk. This procedure typically comes with a 12-week recovery process.

The Rams tried out about 10 kickers during two separate workouts at their facility Wednesday including notables such as Travis Coons and Roberto Aguayo before signing former Penn State kicker Sam Ficken.

Zuerlein had been kicking through some back issues throughout the year, but they never kept him out of practice, and they never threatened his availability for a game until Sunday. Zuerlein had a disk flare up on him while sleeping the night before the Rams’ matchup against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field.

Zuerlein still played, but most of his kickoffs were short, and he missed an extra point. The his back pain was so bad that the Rams even went for it on a late fourth down attempt despite leading big in the second half.

Rams head coach Sean McVay was aware that Zuerlein was experiencing issues with his back, but never really knew the extent of them. Zuerlein and the Rams were hoping he could continue to kick throughout it and get it taken care of after the season. But the pain he experienced in Seattle became too much to tolerate.

Zuerlein is going to be very difficult to replace, but Ficken is going to have to do the job for the Rams. Ficken was an undrafted free agent back in 2015 and has spent time with the Jacksonville Jaquars and Kansas City Chiefs, but has never actually kicked in a regular season NFL game.

The Rams are 10-4 heading into their Week 17 game against the Tennessee Titans on Sunday. They’re in 1st place in the NFC West and are looking to clinch a playoff spot and try to get a 1st round bye. These things just became a little tougher for the Rams to do as they just lost the best kicker in the NFL.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but the podcast is also available for you to listen to whenever you want at TuneIn.com.

Remember to look for me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: December 20, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

I wasn’t surprised and I don’t think anyone with any type of football acumen was either when the Green Bay Packers put quarterback Aaron Rodgers on the IR (injured reserve) yesterday. For some reason it was reported as “breaking news”, but I guess that’s how they saw it.

Once the Packers lost to the Carolina Panthers 31-24 on Sunday they where going to need quite a bit of help to get into the playoffs. It all started on Monday night, but the Tampa Bay Buccaneers didn’t give the Packers any help as they lost to the Atlanta Falcons 24-21. Once Atlanta racked up that win the Packers where officially eliminated from the playoffs.

Rodgers broke his collarbone back in Week 6 against the Minnesota Vikings. Green Bay was 4-2 after Week 6, but without Rodgers at quarterback they went 3-4 and where hanging onto their playoff lives headed into the game against Carolina.

Once Rodgers was medically cleared you knew that if the Packers had any chance at getting into the playoffs Rodgers would be back under center.

Rodgers did look rusty at times and that should’ve been expected since he had been out since October 15th. Rodgers did throw for 290 yards and 3 touchdowns, but he also threw 3 interceptions which actually matched his season total. Of course in true Rodgers form he had the Packers driving late in the game and you have to wonder if Geronimo Allison doesn’t fumble the football if Rodgers would’ve led the Packers to a game tying touchdown.

Now if you saw the game you could tell that Rodgers wasn’t playing at 100%;  so with the playoffs gone for this season it’s much better for the Packers to put him on IR and let him rest and come back at full strength next season.

The Packers will wrap up their season with a Week 16 match up at home against the Vikings and then in Week 17 they go on the road to face the Detroit Lions.

The Los Angeles Dodgers have said that they’d like to get themselves under the leagues luxury tax line and with the trade they made this weekend they took some big steps in doing that.

The Dodgers sent left handed pitcher Scott Kazmir, right handed pitcher Brandon McCarthy, utility man Charlie Culberson and 1st baseman Adrian Gonzalez along with $4.5 million dollars to the Atlanta Braves for outfielder and former Dodger Matt Kemp.

The deal appears to be pretty much money motivated and it seems that the Dodgers accomplished what they wanted to do. According to Ken Rosenthal the trade will get the Dodgers below the $197MM luxury tax threshold for the 2018 season.

This will allow the Dodgers to reset the escalating luxury tax penalties, which seems to have been a significant objective for the club this offseason. The money owed to Kemp is spread out across the 2018-2019 seasons, while Gonzalez, Kazmir and McCarthy all have just one year remaining on their contracts.

Now the most interesting name going to Atlanta was Gonzalez as he really didn’t have a position there as Freddie Freeman has 1st base locked down for the Braves. Atlanta cleared that situation up very quickly as they designated Gonzalez for assignment making him a free agent.

Injuries limited Gonzalez to just 71 games last season. He hit just .242 with 3 home runs. Gonzalez will turn 36 in May, but has made it clear that he’d like to continue his baseball career. Gonzalez has drawn some early interest from the New York Mets, but there appear to be other teams that would be interested in him if he’s healthy. Gonzalez is a career .288 hitter with 311 home runs and 1176 RBI’s. Gonzalez has always been able to drive runs in. He’s had over 100 RBI’s in seven different seasons. He’s also had 90 or more RBI’s in three other seasons.

Do you have a team you’d like to see Gonzalez sign with?

It seems like the Baltimore Orioles just can’t catch a break heading into the 2018 season.

With the Orioles caught up in what there going to do with Manny Machado. Should they trade him before he reaches free agency or will they keep him for the upcoming season?

Now with all of that going on for them there are reports that their closer Zach Britton has suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon during offseason workouts. Britton is expected to be sidelined for at least six months, meaning the best-case scenario will be a return over the summer.

Britton was preparing and hoping for a healthy 2018 campaign after dealing with arm issues last season. Now Britton  will need to rehabilitate this unexpected injury before building back up into pitching form.

Baltimore has toyed with the idea of trading Britton ever since last summer, when the club nearly did just that. The idea was to cash in the former ace closer to address other needs namely a still-glaring need for starting pitching. Of course, the club was also reluctant to part with a pitcher that had been one of the game’s most dominant relievers in 2015 and 2016.

Britton is in his final season of arbitration with the Orioles and is due to make a little over $12 million dollars for 2018. At this point you have to wonder if the Orioles will just let Britton go as there’s very little chance that he’d be back in time to become a trade piece and there’s very little chance the Orioles would resign him once he reaches free agency. Instead of sitting on an injured Britton the Orioles could take the money that would’ve been dedicated to him and use it to try and fill some of their other needs.

The Orioles appear to be in a very tough spot. The New York Yankees seem to have a lot of top quality prospects in their farm system and they just added Giancarlo Stanton. They Boston Red Sox are also in the Orioles division and while they’ve just brought Mitch Moreland back there’s been a lot of talk about them being the front runners for free agent J.D. Martinez. Will the Orioles be able to compete with the Yankees and the Red Sox along with the Tampa Bay Rays and the Toronto Blue Jays in the A.L. East?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

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

How was your week?

Posted: December 16, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The National Football League wrapped up it’s schedule for Thursday night football; so we won’t have to hear all the complaining about those games until next season. With as much as everyone cries about these games you have to think that when the players union and the owners meet to discuss a new Collective Bargaining Agreement the union would want to do away with these Thursday night games.

Anyway the Thursday night schedule wrapped up with two teams having disappointing seasons. The Denver Broncos improved their record to 5-9 as they beat the Indianapolis Colts 25-13. With the loss the Colts record dropped to 3-11.

With neither of these teams anywhere close to being in the playoff race the one thing people where looking forward to where stats for their fantasy leagues. Most if not all leagues are in the playoffs now and there’s nothing wrong with outing up some big numbers on a Thursday to start your week. Sadly there wasn’t much fantasy help in this game either.

Here’s hoping that you didn’t have to use any of the quarterbacks that played in this game. While Trevor Siemian started the game for the Broncos he left the game with an injury after going 5 of 9 for 67 yards with an interception. Brock Osweiler took Siemian’s spot and put up solid numbers. Osweiler went 12 of 17 for 194 yards and threw 2 touchdowns. Osweiler also ran the football 3 times for 17 yards and added a rushing touchdown. Jacoby Brissett had a rough night for Indianapolis. He went 17 for 30 for just 158 yards. Now Brissett did run the football 5 times for 18 yards and had a rushing touchdown.

If you’re a C.J. Anderson owner hopefully you stuck with him this week. Anderson carried the football 30 times for 158 yards, but sadly didn’t find his way into the end zone. Devontae Booker also had 11 carries for 39 yards and 1 receptions for 10 yards. Frank Gore had a huge week in the snow against the Buffalo Bills in Week 14, but on Thursday night he had just 10 carries for 31 yards. Gore actually had more receiving yards as he caught 3 passes for 37 yards. Marlon Mack also carried the football 6 times, but went for just 14 yards.

Demaryius Thomas had 5 catches for 69 yards while Emmanuel Sanders added 7 catches for 68 yards. The Broncos receiving touchdowns went to Cody Latimer who had 3 catches and 60 yards to go along with his touchdown. Jeff Heuerman had 1 reception for 54 yards and the other Broncos receiving touchdown. Jack Doyle had 7 receptions for 47 yards to lead the way for the Colts while T.Y. Hilton add 5 receptions for 41 yards. If you happened to play Ross Travis, he had 2 receptions for 33 yards.

The Colts defense did have 3 sacks and an interception, but had no return yardage. Denver’s defense had just 1 sack and 23 return yards in the game.

I’m not sure if you got much help out of this game for your fantasy playoffs except for maybe Anderson. Of course with 3 touchdowns there’s a chance that Osweiler could be of some help to you.

It’s now the time of year where the NFL adds Saturday games to the schedule. There are two games on the schedule for today. First it’s the Detroit Lions (7-6) hosting the Chicago Bears (4-9). This is pretty much a must won for the Lions if they want to keep their playoff hopes alive. Detroit is currently onw game out of a wild card spot.

The second game of the day is pretty much an elimination game for the AFC West title as the Kansas City Chiefs (7-6) host the Los Angeles Chargers (7-6). The winner of this game takes control of the division and their road into the playoffs and while the loser would still have a shot at a wild card spot they’d have some work to do. The Chiefs appear to have righted the ship last week with a 26-15 win over the Oakland Raiders after losing four games before that. The Chargers started off the season 0-4, but have worked their way back into the division and playoff races and are currently on a 4-game winning streak. These two teams met back in Week 3 with Kansas City getting a 24-10 win in Los Angeles.

Baseball’s winter meetings wrapped up for the week and while there where a lot of signings and a few trades with the exception of Carlos Santana the big name free agents still remain unsigned.

Now it had become obvious that there would be very little movement until Giancarlo Stanton was traded and Shohei Otani picked a team. Once those moves where finally made with Stanton going to the New York Yankees and Otani deciding to sign with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim there where some signings. Then the news came out that the Baltimore Orioles might be looking to trade 3rd baseman Manny Machado and just about everything ground to a halt.

Apparently the Orioles decided that it would be in their best interest to see who would be interested in acquiring Machado and what they would be willing to give up to get him. Machado is in his last year of arbitration and is projected to make a little over $17 million dollars for the 2018 season. As Machado heads into free agency the Orioles have a fear that they won’t be able to resign him so they started to look what they could get for him in a trade.

I’m not sure how close Baltimore actually got to moving Machado in a deal, but their asking price was two major league ready young pitching prospects. That would be a lot for a team to give up for a player that they wouldn’t be sure if they could resign after the 2018 season.

Machado has also said that he’d like to move to shortstop which was his position before he broke into the major leagues and the Orioles needed him to play 3rd base.

There are a long, long list of teams that could use a player like Machado, but probably won’t give up what the Orioles are asking for right now. Do you see Baltimore’s asking price coming down and Machado being dealt?

Pending a physical Carlos Santana will be a member of the Philadelphia Phillies for the next three seasons. Santana and the Phillies agreed to a 3-year $60 million dollar deal with an option for a 4th season.

Santana had spent his entire career with the Cleveland Indians and most experts thought that he was a sure bet to resign with them. Santana spent 8 years with the Indians and was a career .249 hitter.

Santana has played multiple positions throughout his career, but the Phillies plan on using him as their full time 1st baseman. That means that Rhys Hoskins will be moved to the outfield and with Odubel Herrera as the everyday centerfielder there’s a possibility that Aaron Altherr or Nick Williams could be traded.

The Phillies name has continue to come up with every big name either free agent or trade candidate as they work on their rebuilding franchise. Do you see the Phillies adding another big name or two to their roster?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTallkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to at time you want at TuneIn.com.

I am also out there on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: December 13, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Now that Giancarlo Stanton has officially been traded to the New York Yankees I’ve looked at the trade and decided it was just a straight salary dump by Derek Jeter and the Miami Marlins.

The Marlins received two lower level minor leaguers right handed pitcher Jorge Guzman and middle infielder Jose Devers. I’m not sure if either guy will ever play in the major leagues. Now the Marlins did get a quality 2nd baseman in Starlin Castro who is on a pretty team friendly contract. Castro is signed for two more seasons with an option for 2020. He is due $10,857,143 million dollars this season and then $11,857,143 for 2019. His salary would jump to $16 million in 2020 if the option was picked up. There is also a $1 million dollar buyout if the Marlins or whoever Castro would be playing with didn’t want to pick up his option for the 2020 season.

Castro is just 27 years old, but already has eight years of major league experience. He’s a career .282 hitter and has shown more power in his two seasons with the Yankees than he did with the Chicago Cubs. Castro posted a career high 21 home runs in 2016 and looked like he was going to top that last season, but an injury limited him to 112 games and he finished with 16 home runs. With Castro’s salary you have to wonder if he’ll be the guy to be with the Marlins while they lose 100 games a season as Jeter dumps any player with a large salary.

Now the Yankees of course get Stanton in the deal, but the Marlins will also send them $30 million dollars if Stanton doesn’t opt out of his contract after the 2020 season. The Yankees will also pick up $265 million dollars of Stanton’s contract.

Miami had deals that would’ve been better for them with the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Francisco Giants, but Stanton used his no trade clause to veto both of those deals. Stanton informed the Marlins that he would only accept a trade to one of four teams. The Yankees, the Houston Astros, the Chicago Cubs or the Los Angeles Dodgers. I’m actually wondering if Jeter contacted any of those other three teams or if he just went straight to his former team knowing they would be able and willing to take on a large part of Stanton’s salary.

With it appearing to be quite clear that the Marlins are just looking to dump salary you’d have to think that any team with a need or hoping to upgrade a position will be calling Jeter. I’m sure the Marlins would be willing to give someone Wei-Yin Chen if they where willing to take on the majority of his contract.

Chen is signed through 2020 and has a vesting option for the 2021 season. Chen is due $10 million dollar in 2018, but then his salary doubles to $20 million in 2019. In 2020 Chen will make $22 million and if he pitches 180 innings in 2020 or combines to pitch 360 innings in 2019 and 2020 his vesting option of $16 million dollars kicks in for the 2021 season.

Chen was injured most of last season pitching in only 9 games, starting 5 of them. He ended going 2-1 with a 3.82 E.R.A. With the expanding salary numbers and coming off of the injury in 2017 it might be difficult for the Marlins to find a taker for Chen right now, but if he gets off to a good start in 2018 they might have better lick find a trade partner.

I think the names you’re going to hear the most when it comes to teams looking for players from the Marlins are going to be outfielders Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna.

Ozuna is in his last year of arbitration. He made $3.5 million dollars last season, but out up big number sand will be in for a huge bump in salary. Some projections have Ozuna’s salary ended up right around $11 million dollars for this season. You’d think he’d be a top trade candidate because there’s very little chance the Marlins would or could resign him when he becomes a free agent after the 2018 season.

Yelich is also an interesting name. He’s signed through the 2021 season with an option for 2022. He’s due $7 million dollars this season, His salary jumps to $9.75 million dollars in 2019. In 2020 Yelich will be paid $12.5 million dollars and then for the 2021 season he’ll receive $14 million dollars. In 2022 Yelich can either be paid $15 million dollars or be bought out for $1.25 million dollars. Yelich’s contract is actually pretty sensible as far as baseball standards go, but you have to wonder with the financial situation the new Marlins ownership finds itself in if Yelich might have to be dealt.

I’m sure the Marlins would love to find someone to take veterans like Martin Prado and Edison Volquez, but I’m not sure if there would be many teams interested in them unless the Marlins would pick up quite a bit of salary for those players and that’s not what they’re looking to do.

While it’s understandable that Major League Baseball wanted to see someone like Derek Jeter in an ownership role, but it’s unclear why they would allow him and his group to purchase the Marlins when it’s become very clear now that they couldn’t handle the financial status of the teams payroll. Reports are that Jeter the Marlins plan to trim $90 million dollars from the teams payroll; so the Stanton deal was just the start of things for Miami.

Now the Marlins averaged 20,395 fans per home game last season. That put them 28th out of the 30 teams in Major League Baseball. The only teams the Marlins outdrew where the Oakland A’s (18,466) and the Tampa Bay Rays (15,670), but with Stanton already gone and more to come what are the reasons for a Marlins fan to support this team and go to a game. Also remember it wasn’t too long ago that the taxpayers in Miami where hit up so the team could build a new ballpark.

Please let me know what you think of the Marlins situation and who the next player you think will be traded is.

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

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

How was your week

Posted: December 9, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Even before the Major League Baseball off season started talk had already started about two names Japanese pitcher/outfielder Shohei Ohtani and Miami Marlins outfielder and National League M.V.P. Giancarlo Stanton. On Friday we found out who one of these two would be playing for in 2018 and there was talk at first that both would have new teams by the weekend, but the other move didn’t go anywhere close to what people thought.

Of course the signing we know about is that Ohtani has decided to sign with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Angels beat out the Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers and the Chicago Cubs for Ohtani’s services. Ohtani had shortened his list to those 7 teams and held meetings with all of them over a 48 hour period before deciding on the Angels.

Ohtani’s agent Nez Balelo of CAA Baseball issued a statement on his clients and thanking the 7 teams that where involved in the meetings. Balelo described that the reason Ohtani signed with the Angels is that he felt a “bond” with them. Ohtani definitely didn’t take the most money that he could’ve as the Angels have about $1 million dollars less to offer him than the Rangers or the Mariners could’ve in a signing bonus.

The Angels will be responsible for the $20 million dollar posting fee that goes to the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball, but because Ohtani is 23 years old his contract is much easier for the Angels to deal with.

Because of his age Ohtani is considered an amateur under Major League Baseball’s collective bargaining agreement. That means that his contract with the Angels will be a minor league deal. That contract comes with a minimum salary of $545,000 as a major leaguer. Then like all other players Ohtani will be eligible for arbitration after three years of Major League service and will qualify as a free agent after six years of service in the Majors.

The next question is how will the Angels handle Ohtani. It appears as though he’ll go right to the top of their starting rotation and that’s not a surprise at all, but what about finding at bats for him. The Angels have a solid outfield with Justin Upton in leftfield, Mike Trout in centerfield and Kole Calhoun in rightfield; so at bats might be tough to come by there. Now of course since he’s in the American League there is the designated hitter spot except the Angels have a future Hall of Fame player in that role by the name of Albert Pujols. Now there are reports that Pujols is trying to lose weight this off season so he’ll be able to play more at 1st base, but we won’t have the answer to that until spring training. Now there is also a chance that Ohtani won’t be able to hit major league pitching as well as he hit Japanese pitching. There are quite a few scouts out there who don’t think that his bat will be as effective, but again will have to wait until spring training to find that out. Now while scouts have question his hitting they do all agree that the Angels just added a front line starting pitcher.

Now the case for Stanton isn’t as clear. It looked and it was even reported that the Marlins and the Giants where close on a deal that would send Stanton to San Francisco for a package of prospects and that the deal could possibly be done by the weekend. Stanton put an end to all of those rumors when he informed the Giants that he wouldn’t waive his no-trade clause for them. Stanton also let the St, Louis Cardinals know that he wouldn’t waive his no-trade clause for them either.

While the Giants where the front runners to land Stanton the Cardinals where in talks with the Marlins as well. So now that Stanton has ended any talk of him heading to St. Louis or San Francisco; where might he be willing to go? There where reports that Stanton has giving the Marlins four teams that he would be willing to waive his no-trade clause for. Those teams are the current World Series winners the Houston Astros. The 2017 World Series winners the Chicago Cubs. Stanton would also accept a deal to the New York Yankees or the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Interestingly three of those teams the Astros, Yankees and Dodgers all have very well stocked farm systems and could give the Marlins what they would be looking for to get a rebuild started.

As I’m sure everyone knows the Marlins where purchased by a new ownership group led by Derek Jeter, who spend his entire career with the Yankees. Jeter has already made one deal with the Yankees this off season. Miami sent right handed pitcher Michael King and some international pool money to the Yankees for left handed pitcher Caleb Smith and 1st baseman Garrett Cooper. That deal was made when the Yankees thought they where in the running to sign Ohtani.

There are reports that the Yankees and the Marlins are having “serious” talks on a perspective Stanton deal. The Dodgers are also involved in trying to work out a Stanton trade, but those reports also indicate that the Yankees talks are farther along than the Dodgers talks.

As I’m sure you could guess both teams have an issue with assuming the $295 million dollar commitment left on Stanton’s contract. Both the Yankees and the Dodgers have player under large contracts that they could put into a Stanton deal, but it doesn’t appear that the Marlins would be interested in those type of players.

As of now there have been no reports of the Astros or the Cubs being involved in any talks to acquire Stanton, but with the winter meetings getting ready to start that could change rather quickly.

Where is your landing spot for Stanton? Should Miami send him to the American League so they won’t have to face him? Or does it matter to them and they’re just looking to move that contract and get their rebuild started?

Feel free to leave your comments here or find me on Twitter @Burketime.

Remember that you can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but the podcast is also available to you any time you want at TuneIn.com

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: December 6, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The last team any team wants to deal with is an injury to one of their top players, but the Golden State Warriors are going to have to find a way to fill the void created by the injury to Stephen Curry. Curry will miss at least two weeks with a sprained ankle. An MRI was done on the ankle and there was no structural damage. After the two week time frame Curry’s ankle will be re-evaluated. There where also X-rays taken after the game which where negative, but Curry left the arena in a walking boot and using crutches.

The injury occurred in the final minute of Golden State’s 125-115 road win against the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night. As Curry was going for a steal on Pelicans guard E’Twaun Moore he stepped on Moore’s foot and turned the ankle.

Golden State is currently 19-6 and just a 1/2 a game behind the Houston Rockets for the best record in the Western Conference.

Golden State didn’t announce who would step into the starting line up in place of Curry, but you’d have to expect that Shaun Livingston would be that guy. Livingston has played in 22 of the Warriors 25 games this season and has made one start. He’s averaging 4.7 points and 2 assists per game while playing just over 15 minutes per game. There should also be an increase in playing time for guards Nick Young and Patrick McCaw. Young and McCaw have been playing about 13 minutes a game this season.

Filling Curry’s minutes won’t be the problem for Golden State. What’s going to be a bigger issue for them is making up the 26.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, 6.6 assists and 1.74 steals per game that Curry has given them this season.

If Curry is out just the two weeks that have been mentioned he’ll miss games against the Charlotte Hornets, Detroit Pistons, Portland Trailblazers, Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Lakers. He would return on December 20th at home against the Memphis Grizzlies.

That of course would be the best case scenario for Curry’s return, but there’s no rush at all for Golden State to bring them back. It’s still very early in the season and the worst thing that could happen is they don’t get the #1 playoff seed in the Western Conference. Of course the Warriors don’t need home court advantage through the playoffs to reach the NBA Finals or win the NBA title.

The NFL handed out three one game suspensions after Week 13.

The first suspension was given to New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski for his late hit on Tre’Davious White in New England’s game against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. White was laying face down on the ground after making an interception when Gronkowski jumped on him driving his elbow and forearm into White’s head and neck area.

Gronkowski was penalized on the play but not ejected from the game. While White was placed in the NFL’s concussion protocol.

The other two suspensions came after the Pittsburgh Steelers/Cincinnati Bengals Monday night game.

Steelers wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster was given a one game suspension for his block on Vontaze Burfict. It was ruled that Burfict was in a defenseless posture was laid out by Smith-Schuster and had to be carted off the field. Smith-Schuster stood over Burfict as he lay motionless on the field.

The other suspension from the Monday night game was given to Bengals safety George Iloka. Iloka received his suspension for his hit on Steelers wide receiver Antoine Brown on Brown’s game tying touchdown reception. It was ruled that Brown was in a defenseless position when Iloka hit him. Even after the big hit by Iloka, Brown some how held onto the football.

Both Gronkowski and Smith-Schuster have had there hearings and their suspensions where upheld. Iloka did have his hearing on Tuesday evening and the verdict from that hearing isn’t expected to be announced until some time today.

As we’re waiting for the baseball winter meetings to get started and some of the bigger names to sign as free agents or get moved in a trade there have been some minor moves by teams.

A signing that a lot of people thought could be big had the St. Louis Cardinals signing Miles Mikolas to a two year $15.5 million dollar deal. Mikolas has pitched 37 games in the major leagues; starting 10 of them, but hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2014. For the last three seasons Mikolas has been pitching for the Yomiuri Giants in the Japan Central League. Mikolas made 62 starts going 31-13 over 424 2/3rd innings with an E.R.A. of 2.19. His numbers playing in Japan where much better than the numbers he posted in his first major league stint. Mikolas was 4-6 with an E.R.A. of 5.32 over 91 1/3rd innings in those three major league seasons.

Mikolas is being added into the starting rotation mix for the Cardinals, but we’ll have to see if the improvement he made playing in Japan will carry over to St. Louis next season.

The Texas Rangers also came to an agreement with a pitcher. The Rangers signed pitcher Mike Minor to a contract, but he has to be able to pass a physical before the deal becomes official. There where no contract terms announced between the Rangers and Minor, but reports are his contract will be 4 year and $28 million dollars of he passes that physical.

Minor missed both the 2015 and 2016 seasons because of arm and shoulder injuries, He returned last season with the Kansas City Royals and had success out of their bullpen. Minor pitched in 65 games for Kansas City last season. Minor was 6-6 with an E.R.A. of 2.55 while picking up 6 saves.

Before last season Minor was a starter. In 5 seasons with the Atlanta Braves Minor made 110 starts. He was 38-36 as a starter with an E.R.A. of 4.10. He made 30 or more starts twice for the Braves and had one complete game in those 110 starts.

Interestingly the Rangers would like to use Minor as a starter again, but as part of a six man rotation. While no team has officially went to a six man rotation for an entire season it appears as though this is the way baseball is headed.

Would you like to see teams go to a six man starting rotation?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to anytime you want at TuneIn.com

Remember that I’m on Twitter @Burketime