How was your week

Posted: June 9, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, hockey, post season, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

These past two days we’ve had two sports seasons officially come to an end. Last night the NBA season ended and then the day before that the NHL season came to an end. So who won?

The Washington Capitals won their first Stanley Cup title in team history on Thursday night when they beat the Las Vegas Golden Knights 4-3 in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals.

The Capitals came into existence as an expansion team in 1974 and this is only the second time in team history that they’ve made it to the Stanley Cup finals. The other time was the 1997-98 season where they were swept out of the finals by the Detroit Red Wings.

It’s not that the Capitals haven’t been a successful franchise; they’ve just had their issues in the playoffs. The Capitals are in the NHL’s Metropolitan division of the Eastern Conference. Washington ha won that division 11 times. They also been awarded the President’s Trophy three times. The President’s Trophy is awarded to the team that finishes with the most points during the NHL regular season. Washington has also made it into the playoffs in 10 of the last 11 seasons.

The Capitals have had a bit of an issue getting out of the 2nd round of the playoffs though. I the 2014-15 season the New York Rangers knocked the Capitals out in the 2nd round and then in both the 2015-16 season and the 2016-17 season it was the Pittsburgh Penguins who beat the Capital in the 2nd round. Pittsburgh did go on to win the Stanley Cup in both of those seasons.

You had to wonder if this season would be the same. After Washington got by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the 1st round they where again matched up with the Penguins in the 2nd round. This time it was the Capitals that came out on top winning a six game series against Pittsburgh. Washington them beat the Tampa Bay Lighting in a seven game Eastern Conference finals series to get to the Stanley Cup finals.

Las Vegas was the home team for this series and they took advantage of it winning Game 1 6-4. With the season the Golden Knights have had as an expansion team I think there where a lot of people rooting for them to win the Stanley Cup, but the Capitals turn the series completely around winning four straight games to take the Stanley Cup. Game 2 was a tight 3-2 win while Game 3 went ended up a 3-1 win. Game 4 may was the only real laugher in the series as the Capitals ended up with an easy 6-2 win, but it took a Lars Eller goal at the 12:23 mark of the 3rd period to put Washington ahead 4-3. The goal held up and the Capitals where Stanley Cup champions.

Alex Ovechkin was named the Conn Smythe trophy winner. Ovechkin scored 15 goals and assisted on 12 other goals during the playoffs. Six of Ovechkin’s 15 goals came on the power play.

The Conn Smythe trophy is awarded to the most valuable player during the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs. Unlike the awards presented in the NFL,NBA or MLB the Conn Smythe trophy is based on a player’s performance during the entire NHL postseason instead of just the championship game or series.

With the NHL season all wrapped up it was the NBA’s turn to see if their season would come to an end on Friday night in Cleveland.

The Golden State Warriors led the Cleveland Cavaliers in the series three games to none; so they just needed one more win to end it. Now is you’ve read this blog before or have listened to the Sports Time Radio podcast you know I had Golden State winning this series in five games, but I really thought that the Cavaliers would win Game 3. I didn’t think that a team led by LeBron James would get swept in the NBA finals, but that’s exactly what happened.

It doesn’t appear as though the Cavaliers showed up last night as Golden State jumped out to a 34-25 lead after the 1st quarter and that was pretty much. The Cavaliers where unable to outscore the Warriors in any quarter of the game. Golden Sate really pulled away in the 3rd quarter when the Cavaliers only managed to score 13 points in the entire quarter. In the end the Warriors cruised to an easy 108-85 victory.

This was the third time in the last four seasons that the Warriors have won the NBA title. Not only did Golden State win back to back finals, but Kevin Durant won the NBA finals MVP award for the second time in as many years. Durant is the first player to win that award back to back since James himself did it as a member of the Miami Heat in 2012 and 2013. It’s the 7th time in NBA finals history a player has won back to back MVP awards. The only players to win three NBA finals MVP awards in a row are Shaquille O’Neal who did it with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2000, 200 and 2002. Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls did it twice. The first time was in 1991, 1992 and 1993 and he repeated the three-peat in 1996, 1997 and 1998. Could we see Durant join this group next season?

While this is the Warriors third title in four seasons it’s actually the fourth overall for the team itself. I’m sure not many people remember that Golden State won the NBA title back in 1975 when the swept the at the time Washington Bullets; now Wizards in the NBA finals.

Of course when you win three titles in four seasons there has to be talk of a dynasty and there is a good possibility that Golden State will be back here next season. The only major free agent they have is Durant and he has stated publicly that he’d like to return to the Warriors. Golden State does have six other free agents; Nick Young, Zaza Pachulia, David West, JaVale McGee, Kevon Looney and Patrick McCaw. You’d think if the Warriors are interested in bringing any of these players back they’d return willingly for another shot at an NBA title.

I’ll throw the question out to you. With three championships in four seasons and with them looking like they’ll be the favorite coming into next season. Are the Golden State Warriors a dynasty?

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 to follow me o Twitter @Burketime

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There have been 14 points race this NASCAR season and the combination of Kevin Harvick (5), Kyle Busch (4) and Martin Truex Jr. (2) have won 11 of those 14 races. There are 22 races left this season and you have to wonder if there will be any other drivers to step up and challenge these three. Busch is the current points leader with Harvick right behind him. Truex Jr. is currently 4th in the driver standings as Joey Logano is holding down 3rd place. Logano has one win on the season, but it’s the five Top 5’s and eleven Top 10 finishes that have him sitting this high in the driver standings.

Since Harvick, Busch and Truex Jr. all have their win to get themselves into the NASCAR playoffs there goal win be to get as may playoff points as they can. Right now Harvick and Busch have earned 25 playoff points while Truex Jr. has picked up 13 playoff points. No other driver has double digit playoff points yet.

NASCAR added stage point scoring a season back where drivers can accumulate points by where they finish at different points of a race, which they called stages. The Top 10 drivers in a stage get points. A driver gets 10 points fro winning a stage and then the points drop by one to where the 10th place finisher of the stage gets 1 point.

This season Harvick has the most stage wins with 7 while Busch and Austin Dillon have picked up 5 stage wins. Truex Jr. finds himself a little behind in stage wins as he has just three so far tis season.

Now the NASCAR playoffs are a long way away and when you’re dealing with a sport where any type of mechanical failure could wipe out your championship chances you just never know what might happened, but with the way this season has been going it’s a good bet that either Harvick, Bush or Truex Jr. ends up holding the championship trophy after the November 18th race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The NBA Finals took an extra day off as the series moves across country for Game 3 tonight in Cleveland.

The Cleveland Cavaliers had a great opportunity to steal Game 1 in Oracle Arena, but J.R. Smith made a play that will go down as one of the all-time playoff blunders. Game 2 was a different story as the Golden State Warriors came out and made a statement on their home court to take a 2-0 lead in the series.

When you look at these two teams it’s clear that LeBron James is the best player in the series, but the Warriors are easily the best team in this series. Now when this series was starting I picked Golden State to win it in 5 games and I believe Cleveland will win one of these two games on their home court; possibly tonight.

If you’ve listened to the Sports Time Radio podcast you know that I think there’s a lot of manipulation that goes on through the NBA playoffs and I don’t think the finals are any different. I’m expecting Cleveland to be heavily favored in tonight’s game by the officials. Now the home team normally gets more foul calls and ends up shooting more free throws and I fully expect the breakdown to go like that tonight. You have to remember that ESPN along with TNT greatly overpaid the NBA for the rights to televise games and the NBA wants them to think they got their monies worth.

It’s no real shock that Golden State and Cleveland ended up in the finals against each other again. Cleveland is really the only marketable team in the Eastern Conference; so who else was going to get to the finals? I don’t think that the NBA or the television providers would’ve been upset in the Houston Rockets had found their way into the finals, but you have to think that Golden State was the first choice. Besides the Rockets was their another Western Conference team that you think they wanted to see in the finals?

I’m not going to say that the games are fixed as I believe that they are more manipulate. The right whistle here or there or maybe just the fact tat the whistle didn’t blow could can the out come of a game very easily. I believe that Adam Siler is the smartest out of all the commissioners and he wants to keep the people who give the large amounts of money happy.

Major League Baseball held their draft this week and they are trying very, very hard t make it an must see event like the NFL or NBA draft and it’s just not going to happen for them. It’s understandable that they would want their draft to raw as much interest as the NFL or NBA draft does, but the sport is so different from what the NFL and NBA do that it’s never going to be looked at the same way.

It’s a pretty easy comparison to make. Baker Mayfield as the #1 draft pick by the Cleveland Browns in the NFL draft. Since they haven’t had their draft yet this year will go back to last years where the Philadelphia 76ers selected Markelle Fultz with the #1 pick. No these two players went directly to the teams that drafted them and they get to play at the top level of their respective sport right after the draft. Baseball doesn’t quite work like that.

Let’s look back one year. In 2017 the Minnesota Twins took shortstop Royce Lewis with the #1 pick. Now unlike Mayfield and Fultz Lewis was assigned to the Twins Gulf Coast League. Lewis played 36 games there before being moved up to the Twins Class-A team the Cedar Rapids Kernels. Lewis finished up the 2017 season with Cedar Rapids playing in 18 games. Now after spring training Lewis went right back to Cedar Rapids where he’ll probably send the majority if not the entire season. This year the Detroit Tigers had the #1 pick in the draft and they took pitcher Casey Mize. Now Mize just like Lewis last season will probably report to the Tigers rookie league team and then possible finish out the season in Class-A. Now we should get to see both Mayfield and Fultz play for their teams this season. How long before we’ll get to see either Lewis or Mize play a game in the major leagues?

This is the reason that the MLB draft will never have the same kind of following as the NFL, NBA or even NHL where the top draft pick skate for the team that picked them right away. The waiting period is always going to hold the popularity of the MLB draft back and there’s just no way to change that.

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

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: June 2, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Is it time that we look into the possibility that injuries are going to derail Clayton Kershaw’s career.

This season alone Kershaw has missed 30 days do to bicep tendonitis. He returned from that injury this past Thursday to take the mound against the Philadelphia Phillies. Kershaw pitched 5 innings throwing 62 pitches.  He gave up 1 run on 4 hits while striking out 5 and walking just 1. Kershaw got a no-decision in a game that the Phillies ended up winning 2-1.

It appears as though it was just another first start off of the disabled list. A pitcher throws a certain number of innings on a pitch count and the team looks to stretch him out in his next start. Sadly for Kershaw and his Los Angeles Dodgers this wasn’t the case.

After the game the Dodgers placed Kershaw back onto the disabled list with what is being called a strained back. This is the second time Kershaw has dealt with this injury as it caused him to miss some starts last season. As of no there is no timetable for Kershaw’s return.

Kershaw’s first season was 2008 where he pithed in 22 games starting 21 of them. Then from 2009 to 2015 Kershaw made 30 plus starts in six of those seven seasons and threw 200 plus innings in five of those seven seasons. He also won three Cy Young awards and MVP award over that time period.

Now the past three seasons Kershaw has made 21 starts in 2016, 27 starts in 2017 and just 8 starts this season.

Even without Kershaw the Dodgers have found a way to hang around in the NL West race, but is there anyone out there that believe the Dodgers are a contender without Kershaw in their starting rotation?

Kershaw has been considered the best pitcher in baseball for quite some time now, but you don’t hear that phrase associated with his name anymore. There are still some people who call him the best left handed pitcher in baseball, but is that even true now?

Looking at Kershaw’s career numbers he’s truly been a fantastic pitcher. His career record is 145-68 with an ERA of 2.37. His winning percentage of .681 is the best of any active pitcher in baseball today and it ranks 7th all-time. As far as ERA again he has the top ranked active pitcher and overall he has the 24th lowest ERA of all-time. Those are very impressive numbers, especially the ERA since Kershaw has pitched in an era where home runs are a priority and there have been questions of juiced baseballs.

This is the first time Kershaw has ever had back to back injuries and you have to wonder if the 2018 season is going to lost for him. Besides just dealing with the injuries there are some other questions that will have to be addressed.

Kershaw is making $35,571,429 million dollar this season and he has two more years on his deal. Next season his salary is $34,571,429 million dollars and then in 2020 Kershaw’s salary goes back to the $35,571,429 million dollar he making this season, but there is an opt out clause in Kershaw’s contract after this season. Looking at the situation Kershaw is in right now you’ think he’d stay with the Dodgers, but if he was to return this season and he should if he goes out and has some Kershaw like starts there would be teams lining up to pay him this off season.

I’ve always been a fan of players spending their entire careers with ne team, but we all know in todays baseball that is difficult to do. Do you see Clayton Kershaw playing his entire career in a Dodgers uniform? Or is there a chance that he opts out and is wearing a different uniform in 2019?

Hanley Ramirez is officially a free agent. The Boston Red Sox designated Ramirez for assignment giving them 10 days to either trade or release him. Now it was no surprise that the Red Sox couldn’t find a trade partner for Ramirez. Ramirez was under contract for $22 million dollars this season and had a vesting option for another $22 million dollars if he gets another 302 at bats this season. I’m sure the Red Sox looked for deals involving Ramirez, but there wasn’t a team out there that was willing to take on that contract in a trade.

Now that Ramirez has been officially released by the Red Sox those contract provisions go away. He will still be paid the balance of his $22 million dollar salary by the Red Sox for this season minus the pro rated league minimum by which ever team signs Ramirez. The vesting option applied to the Contract that Ramirez had with the Red Sox; so when he signs with a new team they will not be responsible for that vesting option.

The Red Sox officially asked for release waivers on Ramirez on May 30th. It took 48 hours for him to clear waivers; so as of June 1st he is eligible to sign with any team.

Ramirez came out of the gate swinging the bat. He hit .330 in April and show no signs of the shoulder problems he had last season. When the calendar turned to May Ramirez seemed to stop hitting. Since May 1st Ramirez was hitting just .163 and ended his career as a Red Sox on an 0 for 21 streak.

Ramirez is a former Rookie of the Year and has been named to 3 All-Star teams. Ramirez has also won 2 Silver Slugger awards and back when it meant something he won a batting title; he also has a career .290 batting average.

Through his career Ramirez has played Shortstop, 3rd base, Leftfield, but the last three seasons he’s only played 1st base or Designated Hitter. At 34 years old it would be difficult to see Ramirez paying anything other than 1st base or being a teams DH.

Depending on what a team thinks it needs might be the deciding factor on where Ramirez ends up. He has 20 games of post season experience and has a .380 career post season average. could he bring some of that experience to a young team that thinks they’re in the race? Or is it more likely that a team with a lot of veterans adds Ramirez as a bat off the bench and part time player?

Do you have a landing spot for Ramirez?

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 at time you want at TuneIn.com.

Don’t forget that I’m on Twitter @Burketime

Do you remember back to the start of the baseball season? Well every team has played close to about 55 games now and things seem to look a little differently than how they started off.

Remember in the NL West where the Arizona Diamondbacks got off to a hot start and a of people who won’t admit it now thought they would run away with the division. Arizona not only came back to the division they fell out of 1st place. Currently the Colorado Rockies hold the top spot in the NL West. The Rockies have a 1 1/2 game lead over the Diamondbacks. A lot of people where very quick to write off the Los Angeles Dodgers and while they aren’t back to .500 yet they are jus 4 1/2 games behind the Rockies and they get Clayton Kershaw back tomorrow. Even the San Francisco Giants with all of their pitching injuries are just 5 games out of 1st place. Madison Bumgarner just made his first rehab start; so he’s not too far away from being back in the Giants starting rotation.

The NL East got off to a different start than a lot of people expected as the Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies got off to very good starts. The New York Mets where even playing well for a little while, but which team was struggling? That’s right it was the Washington Nationals and again everyone who won’t admit it now thought he Nationals would just fade away. Guess what, they didn’t. While Atlanta and Philadelphia have both continued to play well the Nationals have some how found a way to get themselves into 2nd place just a 1/2 game behind the Braves with the Phillies in 3rd place 1 game behind Atlanta.

Even the NL Central had an interesting start as the Pittsburgh Pirates got out to an early division lead and people where starting to buy stock in them as a contender. Again you know that those people won’t admit that they ever said anything like that, but they did. The pirates are still over .500 at 28-26, but that’s only good enough for 4th place in the NL Central. The Milwaukee Brewers have been one of if not the hottest team n baseball and currently have the best record in the National League at 35-21. Milwaukee leads the NL Central with the Chicago Cubs 3 1/2 games behind in 2nd place and the St. Louis Cardinals 4 games back in 3rd place. The Pirates by the way are 6 games out of 1st place.

Teams running away with their divisions seemed to be the early theme in the National League, but maybe we should let players and teams settle in before we start handing out playoff spots. I completely understand that a lot of the people who where selling these teams do it for a living and they need things to write about and talk about, but they also have to have some kind of common sense when they do that. Even at the point where we are now in the season it’s too early to start deciding who’s going to meet in the World Series.

Carlos Gomez has always been one of the more entertaining players to watch in baseball, Gomez is now with the Tama Bay Rays and he did something yesterday that I have never seen a player do before.

The Rays where in the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum last night to play the Oakland A’s. Gomez was starting in rightfield for Tampa Bay and when he went out to his position in the Bottom of the 1st inning he realized how bright the sun was. Now Gomez didn’t have any eye black on and he wasn’t wearing sunglasses; so instead of going back to the Tampa Bay dugout or have a bat boy bring hi out a pair of sunglasses he did the next best thing. Gomez borrowed a pair of sunglasses from a fan in the stands.

The fan was Matt Welch and he said about the situation. “He needed glasses for the sun which gets bad here around game time and I offered mine to him,” Welch said. “He asked another fan if he could use his, but they were normal sunglasses. Mine are more sporty; so I asked if he wanted to use them. He made two plays with them and gave them back along with the ball he caught for the last out.” Welch also mentioned that Gomez is now one of his favorite non-A’s players.

The Rays did end up winning the game 4-3. Gomez went 0 for 3 with a walk in the game.

Brett Brown’s career record is 127-283, but last season Brown and his Philadelphia 76ers went 52-30 and not only made the playoffs, but won a playoff series. Brown was the 76ers head coach as they struggle to rebuild the franchise and he’s been rewarded for that. The 76ers announced that they’ve signed Brown to a 3-year extension. Brown had one year left on his deal with Philadelphia.

Brown has had an interesting trip to the 76ers head coaching job. Brown’s first head coaching job was in Australia’s NBL. Brown was named NBL Coach of the Year in his first season (1994) as his team the North Melbourne Giants won the league championship. Brown also won an NBL title in 2002 as head coach of the Sydney Kings.

In 2002 Brown joined the San Antonio Spurs as Director of Player Development. In 2007 Brown moved into a assistant coaching role under Greg Popovich. Brown won four NBA championships with the Spurs before the 76ers came calling before the 2013-14 season to take over their team.

Brown guided the 76ers through tough times and with this new three year extension he’ll have an opportunity to turn Philadelphia into an NBA title contender.

The NBA Finals start tomorrow night and for the fourth year in a row it will be the Golden State Warriors and he Cleveland Cavaliers in the finals.

To tell you the truth I have zero interest in this series and I think everyone expected these two teams to be here again.

With the at the playoffs have gone and unless there are some shenanigans Golden State should easily win this series especially if Kevin Love isn’t clear from concussion protocol to play. I’m taking Golden State to win this series in just 5 games.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live n 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 Twitter @Burketime

 

 

How was your week

Posted: May 26, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

With the start that Shohei Otani is off to I’ve started to wonder if players where handled differently in other countries if we could’ve seen this before.

I’m not sure what your baseball experience was like growing up, but on most of the teams I played on the best pitcher on the team was also one of if not the best hitter on the team. That best pitcher would also play a regular position when he wasn’t on the mound to keep his bat in the line up. Somewhere down the line when it’s decided that this player will just be a pitcher the bat is taken out of his hands. Now on one side it’s understandable. You don’t want your best pitcher getting injured running the bases or any other odd way while not pitching, but hasn’t Otani now proven that the risk might’ve been worth it.

There was some talk of allowing San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner participate in the home run derby at last years All-Star game. Now Bumgarner is just a career .185 hitter, but he has been a better hitter the last four seasons and hit .258 in 2014. Bumgarner also has 17 career home runs.

Now Bumgarner isn’t the only pitcher who’s considered a better hitter than he should be. Zack Greinke of the Arizona Diamondbacks is a career .218 with 6 home runs. Mike Leake was the last player to skip the minor and come straight up to the major leagues has a career batting average of .200 with 6 home runs. Leake is currently with the Seattle Mariners; so he won’t be getting any at bats this season unless they decided to pinch hit him. How about the guy who is probably the best pitcher in baseball right now Max Scherzer. While he’s just a career .192 hitter Scherzer currently has the best batting average of any pitcher who doesn’t get at bats as a Designated Hitter this season at .286. Of course since we’re located in the Chicago area I would be remiss to not include former Cubs pitcher Travis wood who is just a .185 career hitter, but has 11 career home runs in 8 seasons. Wood also famously played leftfield in a game and had to make a play on a fly ball that took him into the Wrigley Field ivy, but he did make the catch.

Is it possible that if the bat wasn’t take out of these pitchers hands when they started their minor league careers; could they have done what Otani is doing right now?

Speaking of Otani. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim has decided to skip Otani’s start this Sunday. I found it humorous that they made this decision because they wanted to manage his work load. It just so happens that this Sunday’s start for Otani would’ve been in New York against the Yankees. So are the Angels managing his work load or avoiding the opportunity for him to get rocked by a good offense?

Otani has made seven starts and is 4-1 with an ERA of 3.35; so he has very good numbers. Now when you breakdown his seven starts you’ll notice that his worse start of this season was against the Boston Red Sox. Otani lasted just 2 innings giving up 4 hits; one of them being a home run, 3 earned runs while walking 2 and striking out just 1. This is the only loss on Otani’s record. The start against the Rec Sox was his 3rd of the season; his 4th start of the season was against the Houston Astros. Otani got a no decision pitching 5 1/3rd innings giving up 6 hits and 4 earned runs while walking 5 and striking out 7.

Now the Red Sox have the best record in baseball right now at 35-16 while the Astros are currently at 34-18. Now the Yankees are currently just a game behind the Red Sox in the American League East at 32-15. So again I have to ask; are the Angels really managing Otani’s work load or are they just allowing him to avoid pitching against a very good Yankees line up?

We had are first trade of the baseball season yesterday. Well technically it wasn’t the first trade, but it was the first trade where a player hadn’t been designated for assignment.

The Seattle Mariners acquired Outfielder Denard Span and reliever Alex Colome from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for two minor league right handed pitchers; Andrew Moore and Tommy Romero. The Mariners will also receive cash considerations in this deal.

Colome has ben serving as the Rays closer, but it appears as though he’ll move into a right handed set up role for the Mariners as their current closer Edwin Diaz has converted 18 of his 20 saves chances and has an ERA of 1.71. Colome had 47 saves for the Rays last season and while he had converted 11 of his 13 saves opportunities he is 2-5 with an ERA of 4.15.

Juan Nicasio is the major league leader in holds with 14, but has an ERA of 5.56; so adding Colome in a set up role can take some of the pressure off of Nicasio. Don’t forget that the Mariners lost set up man David Phelps for the season. Phelps torn the UCL in his throwing elbow and has under gone Tommy John surgery; so adding Colome also helps with the loss of Phelps.

Span will be added to a Seattle outfield that almost seems to be injury prone. Ben Gamel and Guillermo Heredia have both missed time with injuries and Dee Gordon is currently on the disabled list with a fractured toe. Mitch Haniger was also hit with a pitch on Tuesday, but luckily x-rays where negative and Haniger won’t miss any time.

Span is in his 11th season, but it was just his first with Tampa Bay. He’s played in 43 games this season and is hitting .238. For his career Span is a .282 hitter. Even at the age of 34 Span still has a speed aspect to his game. He has stolen double digit bases every year of his career expect one; 2011 when he only played in 70 games due to injury. Span has 6 stolen bases this season.

It’s unclear how the Mariners will use Span and where he’ll play. He’s spent most of his time as a centerfielder, but the Rays used him exclusively this season in leftfield. Will have to wait and see how much playing time Span gets and where the Mariners decide to play him.

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

You can look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: May 23, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

It seems a though the Manny Machado trade rumors have really heated up and if you live in the Chicagoland area like we do you would almost think that he’s already a member of the Chicago Cubs.

It was about a week ago when one of the local newspapers mentioned that the Cubs should go after Machado and from their the story really picked up legs. It’s gotten to the point that every baseball related show is reporting on this.

Machado just happens to be in tow with the Baltimore Orioles for a series with the Chicago White Sox. After the first game of that series reporters surrounded Machado and they didn’t want to ask him about the game. Machado answered all of their questions very professionally and even worked his cousin Cubs outfielder Alberto Almora Jr. into the conversation.

Now this past off season the Cubs inquired about Machado and there where reports that a deal would include current shortstop Addison Russell, pitcher Mike Montgomery and a minor league player. The Orioles had no interest in that deal then, but apparently the local media seems to think that they’ll take this deal now. I don’t know why the Orioles would take a deal involving two major league players. You have to think if the Orioles do decided to deal Machado they use him as a tool to rebuild.

I don’t understand why the Cubs would be a interested in a rent-a-player like Machado and maybe they’re not and it’s just the media pumping up he story. Machado is off to a get start offensively and he would be a upgrade with the bat, but defensively there’s not much different in the two players. The Cubs seem to have an overabundance of everyday players and they’re having a tough time finding at bats for them all. Adding Machado doesn’t solve this problem, he’d just be swapped into Russell’s spot. Of course Machado is an everyday player and it would be difficult for Joe Maddon to hold him out of the line up for players like Javier Baez and Ben Zobrist.

While I doubt that the Orioles would take Russell in a deal for Machado, but if the name Baez was in that dal they might be a little more interested. The Cubs haven’t shown at interest in dealing Baez and I don’t know if they’d do it for Machado. Humorously if Machado did come to the Cubs his cousin Almora could be one of the players headed to Baltimore for him.

Of course the Cubs aren’t the only team interested in acquiring Machado. A couple of other teams that have come up are the Philadelphia Phillies and the Los Angeles Dodgers. I’m sure the Chicago media doesn’t want to hear this and won’t admit it because it would ruin their story, but either of these teams are better trade fits for the Orioles than the Cubs are. The Cubs really don’t have a top prospect to deal while the Phillies and the Dodgers both have quality farm systems they could deal from. The Cubs used all of their top prospects last season while the Phillies where still in their rebuilding phase. The Dodgers did deal a couple of their prospects, but they have a much better farm system than the Cubs and still have players they could trade.

There’s also one important thing that everyone who’s writing and report about this has forgotten. While Dan Duquette is Baltimore’s General Manager, Peter Angelos owns the team and he doesn’t like to trade his star players. This may be the biggest stumbling point with a Machado deal. Also it hasn’t been noted that the Orioles haven’t mentioned or shown any interest in moving Machado.

Now besides the Cubs, Phillies and Dodgers that are reported as the teams interested in Machado, but too be honest you could pick any team in baseball and they could be interested in him.

Seriously, think about that. If Machado was willing to sign a new contract before this season ends he would be the best building block for any team to start shaping their team around. Machado moved to shortstop this season, but if he was willing to move back to 3rd base he would fit with quite a few teams. Machado would be a fantastic bat for any contender to add to their line up or maybe even a team that thinks they’re just a contender. See that’s how easy this is to do with a player like Machado.

I’m guess since I live in a Chicago suburb I get the bulk of the talk of Machado coming to the Cubs, but I wonder if in other cities they’re getting the same thing.

Do you see the Orioles trading Machado? If you have him being traded, what team do you have him going to? and who do you think Baltimore gets in return for him?

If you’re a current baseball player or even a former player how do you think you’d do against 105 m.p.h. fastball from St. Louis Cardinals reliever Jordan Hicks?

On Sunday against Philadelphia Hicks became the second pitcher to reach the 105 m.p.h. with a pitch since Aroldis Chapman. Hicks hit that mark twice in his appearance on Sunday.

Hicks is 21 years old and was the Cardinals 3rd round pick in the 2015 draft. This is his first season in the majors. He made 21 appearances covering 22 innings. His record is 2-1 with an ERA of 2.05. Hicks has shown some issues with control. He’s struck out 9 batters, but he’s walked 16. He’s also hit 3 batters and thrown 4 wild pitches.

While it’s clear that Hicks has a live arm he’ll have to work on his control, but you have to wonder if he’s on the same career path as Chapman. Hicks doesn’t have a save in his career, but I’m sure the Cardinals can envision him as a long term solution as their closer. It will be interesting to see if the Cardinals try and give Hicks some Closing opportunities just to see how he handles a late inning situation.

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

Look me up on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: May 19, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, fantasy, hockey, post season, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

One of the things my mother use to say when I was growing up was that if it wasn’t for bad luck I’d have no luck at all. Oddly it seems like this is something I’m dealing with right now.

If you’re a FanDuel player I’m sure you’ve participated in the Home Run Derby they’ve had going on this baseball season. It’s a free contest; so why not play. It’s a simple contest to get in on. You select three players you think are going to hit home runs and the person who’s three man team hits the most home runs wins.

When the contest first started I actually went the first week without hitting a home run. I was trying to find the best match us or the ballparks that seem to allow the most home runs and it just wasn’t working out for me; so I decided to make a change.

About 10 to 12 days ago I switched up my strategy. I decided that as long as they where available I’d use Bryce Harper and Mike Trout as two of the three players I’d enter in the contest. Now my co-host on the Sports Time Radio podcast Dan the Man took it one step further. He uses Harper, Trout and Mookie Betts everyday if they’re all available.

Here’s the humorous thing about this. Since we’ve been doing this none of these players has hit a home run during the contest. Now these three players haven’t been available to pick every contest as FanDuel use night games during the week, but they are available the majority of the time.

Now I’m not sayin that we’re the cause of these players not hitting home runs, but Trout was actually in the longest hitless streak of hit career going into last nights game. Trout was 0 for 19 heading into the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays last night. Trout went 1 for 3 last night an his hit was his 13th home run of the season; so maybe the streak is finally over. Even with Trout’s home run the Angels lost 8-3 to Tampa Bay last night.

Let’s hope that Trout’s home run gets him going and for our sake that Harper and Betts join in.

The Las Vegas Golden Knights are just one win away from being the first expansion team in NHL history to make it to the Stanley Cup finals in their first season.

The Golden Knights defeated the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 in Game 4 of their Western Conference finals series last night.

Las Vegas has been trying to set the tone in their playoff games and one of the ways they’re doing that is by scoring first and they did that again last night.

Just 2 minutes and 25 seconds into the game William Karlsson scored the first goal of the game for the Golden Knights on the power play. Karlsson was assisted by Reilly Smith and Jonathan Marchessault.

Karlsson’s goal was the only one of the 1st period as the Golden Knights went into the first intermission with a 1-0 lead.

In the 2nd period it was Winnipeg’s turn to cash in on a power play opportunity. 9 minutes and 29 seconds into the 2nd period Patrik Laine evened things up for the Jets at 1-1 with a power play goal. Laine was assisted by Blake Wheeler and Dustin Byfuglien on his goal.

The tie game didn’t last long as less than 50 seconds later at 10:12 of the period Tomas Nosek gave Las Vegas the lead back at 2-1 with a goal. Nosek was assisted by Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Luca Sbisa on his goal. Nosek was actually the Las Vegas player who was penalized when Winnipeg tied the game.

The 2nd period ended with Las Vegas holding a 2-1 lead.

Early I the 3rd period the Jets had a power play opportunity that they where unable to cash in on, but with 5 minutes and 34 seconds gone in the 3rd period Tyler Myers tied the game up at 2-2 with a goal. Myers was assisted by Jack Roslovic on his goal.

With the game even at 2-2 neither team wanted to make a mistake that the other could take advantage of. Unfortunately for Winnipeg that mistake came in the form of a Dustin Byfuglien give-away. With a little over 13 minutes gone in the 3rd period Reilly Smith took advantage of that give-away and scored an unassisted goal that put the Golden Knights up 3-2.

Marc Andre-Fleury made Smith’s goal stand up as he stopped 35 of Winnipeg’s 37 shots on goal as the Golden Knights picked up a 3-2 win in Game 4. Connor Hellebuyck was solid in goal for Winnipeg as he stopped 26 of the 29 shots Las Vegas threw at him.

With the win the Golden Knights have a 3 games to 1 lead in the series and will and will have a chance their first chance to close out this series and advance to the Stanley Cup finals Sunday in Winnipeg. That game has a puck drop time of 2:00 p.m. Sunday. The game will be shown on NBC.

The Arizona Diamondbacks are 25-19 and are currently in 1st place in the NL West, but they’re not without their issues.

Jake Lamb has played just 5 games for the Diamondbacks this season before he went on the disabled list with a sprained acromioclavicular joint in his left shoulder. Lamb came off the disabled list last night; going 1 for 4 as the Diamondbacks suffered their 8th defeat in 9 games 3-1 to the New York Mets. Arizona has been struggling offensively and they’re hoping Lamb’s return will help turn that around.

The Diamondbacks hope that Lamb can help replace some of the offense they lost when A.J. Pollock went on the disabled list with a broken left thumb. Pollock broke the thumb trying to make a diving catch and is expected to be out anywhere from 4 to 8 weeks.

With Paul Goldschmidt off to a slow start this season Pollock has been the Diamondbacks offensive leader. Pollock leads Arizona in batting average at .293, home runs with 11 and RBI’s with 33. Hopefully for Arizona the return of Lamb along with Goldschmidt picking up his pace can off set the loss of Pollock.

Arizona has had some pitching injuries as well. Robbie Ray has started throwing off of flat ground and the Diamondbacks are hoping he’ll be able to return from his oblique strain by the end of the month. Ray returning soon will help boost the Diamondbacks starting rotation, but they’re still looking for someone to take the place of Tajuan Walker in the rotation. Walker is out for the season. Walker suffered a torn UCL in his right elbow and has already under gone Tommy John surgery.

Arizona has tried a couple of pitchers in the 5th spot of their rotation, but haven’t landed on someone they want to keep there.

Kris Medlen made a start, but lasted just 4 innings giving up 7 runs on 9 hits while walking 4 and striking out 4. Medlen was sent back to triple-A after his start.

Troy Scribner also made a start which was his major league debut. Scribner pitcher 3 2/3rd innings in his start giving up 2 runs on 4 hits, but he walked 6 while striking out 4. Scribner was also sent back to Triple-A after his start.

So where do the Diamondbacks turn now? How about Clay Buchholtz.

Buchholtz has made 5 minor league starts this season, 1 in Double-A and 2 in Triple-A for the Kansas City Royals before being released by Kansas City. Buchholtz has made 2 starts in Triple-A for Arizona and his numbers look good. In those 5 starts Buchholtz is 1-1 with an ERA of 2.93. He’s pitched 27 2/3rd innings in those 5 starts with 19 strikeouts and 12 walks.

Buchholtz spent 10 seasons with the Boston Red Sox before being traded to the Philadelphia Phillies last season. Buchholtz pitched just 7 1/3rd innings for Philadelphia before an injury ended his season. Buchholtz has pitched in 208 major league games with 190 of them being starts. He is 81-62 with a 4.01 career ERA. Could he be the Diamondbacks answer until Ray returns?

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

Look for me on Twitter @Burketime

Yesterday it was announced that Seattle Mariners 2nd baseman Robinson Cano was suspended for 80 games after failing an off season drug test.

Cano tested positive for Furosemide which is a diuretic and is not considered a banned substance by Major League Baseball. Furosemide however is often used as a masking agent for performance enhancing drugs. It was determined that Cano’s use of Furosemide was as a masking agent and that’s why he was suspended. 

Cano had filed an appeal, but decided to drop the appeal last week.

Cano’s suspension begins immediately even though he is currently on the disabled list with a fractured right hand. Cano had surgery on the hand yesterday and was expected to be out up to 8 weeks, but with the suspension he’ll be away from the team for a longer period of time.

Not only will Cano miss 80 games with this suspension, but he’ll forfeit his salary for those 80 games. Cano will lose just about $12 million dollars over that time. Besides the games and the money Cano will not be eligible for post season play if the Mariners get into the playoffs this season.

This is Cano’s 14th season at the major league level and appeared to be building a Hall of Fame candidacy. How will this suspension affect his Hall of Fame chances?

Cano was off to a solid start with the Mariners this season. In 39 games he was hitting .287 with 4 home runs and 23 RBI’s. Now over his career Cano has amassed 2417 hits and looks to be on track to reach that coveted 3000 hit plateau. Cano has a career batting average of .304 with 305 home runs and 1206 RBI’s. Again though will any of these numbers matter when Cano’s name finally hits the Hall of Fame ballot.

As for the Mariners, they’ll have to figure out how to replace Cano in their line up. Gordon Beckham was promoted from Triple-A to take Cano’s roster spot and is expected to share playing time at 2nd base with Andrew Romine. Of course the Mariners have Dee Gordon on their roster. Gordon has been playing centerfield for Seattle and at first the team said that Gordon wouldn’t be brought back into the infield while Cano was out. Yesterday though there where some reports that the Mariners said Gordon would see “some time” at 2nd base while Cano was out. Gordon would need some time to adjust to being a 2nd baseman again as he hasn’t taken a ground ball in the infield since he was acquired by the Mariners.

The Mariners are currently 1 1/2 games out of a playoff spot; so maybe instead of shuffling their own players around they’ll look into the possibility of a trade. Mariners general manager Jerry DiPoto hasn’t been afraid to pull the trigger on deals before; so we’ll have to see if that’s the route the Mariners go.

How do you think the Mariners will do without Robinson Cano for 80 games?

The Boston Celtics took a 2-0 lead in their series with the Cleveland Cavaliers with a 107-94 win in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference finals series last night.

The Celtics may have gotten a Game 2 win, but LeBron James did everything he could to get Cleveland that win James put up a triple-double in the loss scoring 42 points handing out 12 assists and grabbing 10 rebounds. James scored 21 of the Cavaliers 27 1st quarter points. With 21 points in a quarter, James tied his career high for points in a quarter. With those 42 points on the night it was the 5th time this post season that James has score 40 or more points in a game.

James left the game with 3:50 left in the 2nd quarter after a collision with Boston’s Jayson Tatum. There was a foul called on Tatum after the collision and James hit both of the free throws before heading to the Cavaliers locker room for treatment.

After the game James was asked if he had been checked for a concussion as Tatum’s left shoulder hit James jaw and head. James mentioned he was checked for a variety of things and cleared all tests nd was allowed to return to the game.

James went 9 of 15 after the collision with Tatum, but the game really turned the Celtics way after the two players collided. Boston ended up out scoring Cleveland by 24 points after the Tatum/James collision to go on to the 107-9 win and take that 2-0 lead in the series.

The Eastern Conference finals take a couple days off as the series heads to Cleveland for games 3 and 4. Game 3 is scheduled to tip-off at Quicken Loans Arena on Friday at 6:30 p.m.

The NBA also held it’s Draft Lottery last night and a couple of teams where able to improve their draft position.

The Phoenix Suns had the best chance at getting the #1 pick in the draft and they did get the #1 overall pick last night. Now the Sacramento Kings had a 18.3% chance of moving into the Top 3 of the draft, but they managed to move up to the #2 pick. The Atlanta Hawks where already sitting at #4 and had a 42.3% chance to move into the Top 3 ad they did just that. The Hawks where able to jump up one spot and now have the 3rd pick in the draft.

Of course if teams moved up well then teams had to move down. The Memphis Grizzles and the Dallas Mavericks each dropped two spots in the draft. Memphis fell to 4 while Dallas fell to 5. The Orlando Magic and the Chicago Bulls each lost a spot in the draft order as well. The Magic fell to 6 while the Bulls fell to 7 in the draft order.

Here’s how the Draft Lottery ended up shuffling out.

#1 Phoenix Suns

#2 Sacramento Kings

#3 Atlanta Hawks

#4 Memphis Grizzlies

#5 Dallas Mavericks

#6 Orlando Magic

#7 Chicago Bulls

#8 Cleveland Cavaliers from the Brooklyn Nets

#9 New York Knicks

#10 Philadelphia 76ers from the Los Angeles Lakers

#11 Charlotte Hornets

#12 Los Angeles Clippers from the Detroit Pistons

#13 Los Angeles Clippers

#14 Denver Nuggets

That’s how it shook out; so now all of the mock drafts can start.

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

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

How was your week

Posted: May 12, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, post season, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Maybe it was the change of teams o the fact tat he doesn’t have the pressure of pitching for a New York team, but Mat Harvey’s first start for the Cincinnati Reds has to be considered a success.

Harvey threw 55 pitches in the 4 innings he worked. While it was a short outing remember that Harvey hasn’t made a start since April 19th; so he’ll have to build up his arm strength and stamina again. In his 4 innings of work Harvey gave up 1 hit that shouldn’t of even been a hit. Scott Schebler lost a fly ball in the lights that turned into a triple for Cody Bellinger. Harvey also struck out 2 in his start.

This was the first start for Harvey that he didn’t give up a run in since his first start of the season. In the four relief appearances Harvey made for the Mets he only had one outing where he didn’t give up a run.

The Mets wanted to send Harvey to Triple-A to try to work out his issues, but he refused the assignment. The Mets ended up designating Harvey for assignment which gave them 10 days to trade or release him. On May 8th the Mets where able to agree to a deal with the Reds that sent Harvey to Cincinnati for catcher Devin Mesoraco and cash.

While Harvey was making his first start for Cincinnati last night Mesoraco was getting his first hit in a Mets uniform. Mesoraco hit a solo home run in the top of the 9th inning as the Mets picked up a 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies.

As for Harvey and the Reds. They went on to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-2 last night.

On Wednesday Dwane Casey was named NBA Coach of the Year as voted by the other coaches in the league. On Friday Casey was out of a job as he was fired by the Toronto Raptors after seven seasons as their head coach.

Casey is the most successful coach in Raptors history. He has a career record of 320-238 and Toronto just posted it’s best regular season record in team history at 59-23, but after consecutive seasons of being swept out of the playoffs in the 2nd round by the Cleveland Cavaliers the Raptors decided to make a change.

Casey had one year left on his contract with the Raptors at $6.5 million dollars.

It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone if Casey is hired very quickly by one of the teams still looking for a head coach. The Atlanta Hawks, Detroit Pistons, Milwaukee Bucks and the Orlando Magic are still looking for a new head coach.

The Bucks are in a similar situation that the Raptors where in when Casey took over that team. Could that be the landing spot for Casey? Milwaukee is the only team out of the four still looking for a had coach that was in the playoffs this season.

As for the Raptors. Reports have come out that former Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer is the first candidate they’d like to interview for their current vacancy. Since the Raptors are a little late in looking for a head coach Budenholzer has already interviewed with the Bucks.

A coupe of other names that have came up as people the Raptors would like to interview are Nick Nurse who has been an assistant with the Raptors since 2013. Former NBA player and current coach of the Raptors G-League team Jerry Stackhouse is another name that’s come up as someone Toronto wants to interview.

While neither Nurse or Stackhouse have NBA head coaching experience Budenholzer spent 5 seasons as Atlanta’s head coach. Budenholzer led the Hawks to the playoffs his first four seasons with the team before Atlanta decided to rebuild last season.

No matter who the Raptors decide to hire they’ll be coming into a team that is coming off it’s best regular season in team history, but have only reached the Eastern Conference finals one time.

While we’re in the Eastern Conference the finals will get started tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. as the Boston Celtics will host the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 1 of their series.

The Cavaliers haven’t played since Monday when they eliminated the Raptors; so they’ll be coming into Game 1 with 5 days off.

The Celtics wrapped their 2nd round series against the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday; so they haven’t had quite as much time off as Cleveland as they’ll be coming into Game 1 with 2 days off.

As for the Western Conference finals; well they have to wait until Monday night to tip off their series. The Houston Rockets and the Golden State Warriors both wrapped up their 2nd round series on Tuesday; so they’ll both come into Game 1 with 4 days off.

The playoff scheduling for the NBA has always seemed odd to me. While the Rockets and the Warriors will get one day off between Game 1 and Game 2 the Cavaliers and the Celtics will get 2 days off in between Game 1 and Game 2. Then everybody gets 2 days off before they play Game 3. No wonder why the NBA season doesn’t end until June.

Most of the people believe that even though it’s just the Western Conference finals match u that the winner of the Rockets/Warriors series will be the NBA champion. I’ve even heard this series being called the “actual” NBA finals. Are you on board with this theory? Or do you think which ever Eastern Conference team gets into the NBA finals they have a chance to win a title?

Even though they lost their 2nd round playoff series to the Celtics 76ers guard T.J. McConnell showed his worth to the team. Yesterday the 76ers announced that they will be picking up the option on McConnell’s contract for next season. McConnell’s option is for $1,600,520 making him a steal in today’s NBA.

McConnell is 26 years old and just finished up his 3rd season with the 76ers. Last season  in 76 regular season games this season, he averaged 6.3 points per game, 4.0 assists per game, and 3.0 rebounds per game.

McConnell’s salary for 2018/19 season remains non-guaranteed even after his option is exercised. That shouldn’t be an issue since Philadelphia won’t be waiving him.

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

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

 

 

 

We’ve got a Game 7 in the NHL playoffs tonight. The Nashville Predators will host the Winnipeg Jets tonight after the Predators where able to force a Game 7 with a 4-0 Game 6 victory in Winnipeg on Monday.

This is the only 2nd round series still playing. Tonight’s winner will move on to face the Las Vegas Golden Knights in the Western Conference finals. In the Eastern Conference the Tampa Bay Lighting will host the Washington Capitals Sunday night in the opener of that series.

Home ice hasn’t meant much in the Predators/Jets series as both teams have won the others ice multiple times in this series.

Nashville was the President’s trophy winner with 117 points this season, but Winnipeg was the next closet team to them with 114 points.

Nashville has is being led in scoring this post season by Filip Forsberg with 15 points. Mark Scheifele has been the Jets leading scorer so far this post season with 14 points. The Predators rely on Pekka Rinne in goal, but back up goaltender Juuse Saros has appeared in 3 games this post season. Rinne has a Goals Against Average of 2.94 this post season, but his record is just 7-5. Rinne does have 2 shutouts in 12 post season games including Game 6 in Winnipeg. Connor Hellebuyck has manned the net for the Jets this post season. Winnipeg’s back up Steve Mason has made 1 post season appearance. Hellebuyck has a Goals Against Average of 2.36 with a record of 7-4. Hellebuyck has posted 1 shutout this post season.

The Predators where last years Cinderella story making it all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals before coming up short to the eventual champions the Pittsburgh Penguins. Winnipeg didn’t even get into the playoffs last season. The series has lived up to the hype, but one of these teams has to go home.

The puck should drop for Game 7 in the Bridgestone Arena about 7:00 p.m. Who do you have winning tonight; Nashville or Winnipeg?

For the second time in baseball history a pitcher born in Canada threw a no-hitter and it just so happened that the game was being played in Canada.

Seattle Mariners left hander James Paxton, who’s nickname is Big Maple no-hit the Toronto Blue Jays last night as the Mariners won the game 5-0. Paxton is from Ladner, British Columbia.

Paxton struck out 7, walked 3 and threw just 99 pitches in his no-hitter. Josh Donaldson made the final out hitting a hard ground ball that Mariners 3rd baseman Kyle Seager cut off, throwing Donaldson out at 1st to seal the no-hitter.

With 2 outs in the bottom of the 7th inning Seager made the defensive play of the game that really saved the no-hitter. Kevin Pillar hit a down the 3rd base line that looked like it had a chance to get down into the leftfield corner. Seager made a full out dive to snag the baseball. Seager made a bit of an off balance throw to first base, but Ryon Healy was able to pick the throw on one hop and record the out.

Russell Martin did lead off the bottom of the 8th inning for the Blue Jays with a long drive to leftfield, but Ben Gamel easily made the catch near he wall for the 1st out of the inning.

Those where really the two closest times that the Blue Jays came close to getting a hit. Paxson was rolling along most of the night and in the 9th inning he got top prospect Anthony Alford to foul out for the 1st out of the inning. Teoscar Hernandez has been one of the hotter players in the Blue Jays line up, but Paxson struck him out for the 2nd out of the 9th inning. That led to the Donaldson ground out that Seager snagged to end the game.

Paxson’s no-hitter was the 6th in Mariners history. The last Seattle no-hitter was on August 12th 2015 when Hisashi Iwakuma threw one against the Baltimore Orioles. ‘The King” Felix Hernandez has the only perfect game in Mariners history. Hernandez threw that on August 15th 2012 against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Can you name the other Canadian born pitcher to throw a no-hitter?

If you said Dick Fowler you where correct. Fowler no-hit the St. Louis Browns on September 9th 1945. This was actually Fowler first start of that season. Fowler had been serving in the Canadian military during World War II and had just recently returned to the Philadelphia Athletics.

Fowler spent his entire 10-year career with the Athletics. He did miss all of the 1943 and 1944 season because of his military service. Fowler pitched in 221 career games with 170 of them being starts. Fowler went 66-79 with 4 saves. His career ERA was 4.11.

The Western Conference finals in the NBA where set last night. The Houston Rockets advanced by beating the Utah Jazz 112-102 and winning that series 4 games to 1. The Golden State Warriors moved on with a 113-105 win over the New Orleans Pelicans winning that series 4 games to 1. The Cleveland Cavaliers swept the Toronto Raptors out of the playoffs to advance to the Eastern Conference finals. Cleveland is waiting to see who’ll they’ll be playing and might find out tonight.

The Boston Celtics host the Philadelphia 76ers I Game 5 of their 2nd round series tonight. Boston is ahead 3 games to 1; so if they get a win tonight they’ll be the team that moves on to face the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference finals. If the 76ers get a win tonight the series will head back to Philadelphia for Game 6 on Friday night.

With the Western Conference 2nd round wrapped up the Rockets and the Warriors will get some time off. The Western Conference finals don’t start until Monday May 14th in Houston.

Most people believe that the Rockets and the Warriors are the two best teams in the NBA and that the winner of this series will be the eventual NBA champions. Are you in this camp? Do you believe that whoever wins this series will win the championship or do you believe that which ever teams coms out of the Eastern Conference has a chance.

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

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