Posts Tagged ‘Masahiro Tanaka’

NASCAR

Last weekend the NASCAR series was at the Talladega Superspeedway for the Geico 500. Now there are plenty of people out there who watch NASCAR just for the accidents.If you happen to be one of those people this race did not disappoint you. Only 21 out of the 40 cars that started finished on the lead lap. Some of the top drivers got themselves caught up in accidents and in the cases of Kasey Kahne and Dale Earnhardt Jr. they got caught up in two accidents. If you haven’t seen the video yet you should look for the one where Earnhardt Jr, is involved in his second accident of the race. As he’s driving his steering wheel comes off in his hands and he has to grab the connecting rod to try and steer the car. This second accident took Earhardt Jr. out of the race and he ended up finishing 40th. Now Talladega races can get wild as they are restrictor plate races and the cars run together in big group at or around 200 miles per hour.So that normally means when one car starts to crash they take quite a few cars with them. It can also work out to your advantage if you’re in the right place at the right time when these accidents take place. Brad Keslowski ended up in the best plat at Talladega as he led 46 laps and won the race. Kyle Busch cane home 2nd with Austin Dillon in 3rd, Jamie McMurray in 4th and  Chase Elliott who started the race on the pole came home 5th. Tony Stewart was credited with a 6th place finish, but got out of the car at the first caution and Ty Dillon spent most of the race in the car. According to NASCAR rules the driver that starts the race gets credit for where it finishes. Stewart just returned from a back injury and his doctor advise him to get out of the car and allow Dillon to substitute. Dillon did qualify the car and it was set up for him. Stewart ended up running about 50 laps before giving way to Dillon. Matt Kenseth’s run of bad luck continued. He led 39 laps and look to have a car that could contend, but he got caught up in an accident with Danica Patrick and had to settle for a 23rd place finish. On the Sunday Sports Time Radio podcast Chris Olmstead gave us his 3 drivers to look for in victory lane. He did take Earnhardt Jr, but being that it was a restrictor plate race just about everyone would’ve pick him. He did netter with his other two drivers as Kyle Busch came home 2nd for him and his other choice was Chase Elliott who finished 5th. The Sprint Cup series heads to Kansas Speedway for the Go Bowling 400 on Saturday night.

NFL

I thought this was a bit of an odd story. The National Football Leagu has warned it’s players that if they’re traveling to China or Mexico they have to be careful about any meat they might eat. Any meat produced in China or Mexico may potentially contains Clenbuterol, which is banned under the league’s performance enhancing substance policy.  The independent administrator of the NFL’s drug testing program sent out a memo to players warning them of this possibility. Clenbuterol is a muscle-building and weight-loss stimulant. Oddly the NFL has scheduled a Monday Night Football game in Mexico City on November 21st. The Oakland raiders will take on the Houston Texans in that game. The Raiders also hosted a fan fest as part of the NFL draft this past Saturday in Mexico City. Last season Houston’s left tackle Duane Brown tested positive for Clenbuterol after he took a trip to Mexico on the Texans bye week and ate Mexican beef. After a month long process, Brown was finally cleared in April, sources said, allowing him to avoid what would have been a 10 game suspension. Hopefully NFL players take notice and don;t have t go though the same situation as Brown did. Now this just isn’t an issue that the NFL is dealing with. In 2011, five players on Mexico’s national soccer team tested positive for Clenbuterol, and the country’s federation ruled the positive tests were caused by contaminated meat. Then again at the 2011 Under-17 World Cup held in Mexico, FIFA found a majority of all players tested had traces of Clenbuterol in their system. Mexican cattle ranchers are banned from using Clenbuterol as a growth enhancer, but reports suggest that it is still used widely.

MLB

What if anything will the New York Yankees do. General Manager Brian Cashman mentioned yesterday in the New York papers that things had to change with this team, but what. After last nights 4-1 loss to the Baltimore Orioles the Yankees are 8-16 and in last place in the American League East. Now it is still very early in the season, but the Yankees find themselves 6 1/2 games out of 1st place. Now of course you can always make a change at manager, but is this really Joe Girardi’s fault. I’m sure you’ve heard the term; you can’t fire the players; so Girardi may end up being the fall guy for the Yankees. Maybe the Yankees record has more to do with the fact that only Masahiro Tanaka has an ERA under 3.00 at 2.87 in the starting rotation. The other starters C.C. Sabathia (5.06), Nathan Eovaldi (5.46), Luis Severino (6.31) and Michael Pineda (6.33) round out the Yankees rotation. Also no Yankees starting pitcher has more than 1 win. While the bullpen will get some help soon as Aroldis Chapman will be returning from suspension. Of course the back end of the Yankees bullpen has been good. Delin Betances has appeared in 12 games covering 11 2/3rd innings. He has 5 holds, 24 strikeouts, a WHIP of 0.94 and an ERA of 3.09. Andrew Miller has been handling closer duties while Chapman is out. Miller has appeared in 10 games pitching 10 innings. He has 5 saves, 16 strikeouts, a WHIP of 0.40 and an ERA of 0.00; so he hasn’t given up an earned run. Stat wise the hitting looks to be pretty solid. Chase Headley does appear to be struggling hitting just .147. Alex Rodriquez (A-Rod) isn’t hitting for a high average (.194), but does lead the team in home runs with 5 and is tied for the team lead in RBI’s with Starlin Castro at 12. Of course A-Rod strained a hamstring last night running out a ground ball and looks like he’ll end up on the disabled list. Now the Yankees are an older team with a lot of high salary guys coming to the end of their contracts. Can you fix this team? or do you just hope they come around as the weather warms up.

Listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com you can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

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So it turned out to be the New York Yankees who signed Masahiro Tanaka. It took a seven year contract for $155 million to get the deal finalized. Then of course there’s the $20 million posting fee that the Yankees now have to pay to Tanaka’s Japanese league team the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles. It had been reported that Tanaka had narrowed his choices to the Yankees or the Chicago Cubs. There was actually a report that another team had offered Tanaka more money than the Yankees did but they never said if that team was the Cubs. A lot of scouts have been saying that Tanaka is a #2 rotation type of pitcher but the Yankees paid an awful lot of money for a guy to be a #2 starter. Of course we won’t know anything until the regular season starts and we see how Tanaka matches up against major league hitters. After the Tanaka signing it was being reported that Matt Garza had signed a four year, $52 million dollar deal with the Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers came out and said they hadn’t signed Garza and he needed to pass a physical before they could agree on a deal. We’ll see if the Brewers end up with Garza or if it turns into a Grant Balfour type of situation. Balfour by the way agreed this week to a two year deal with the Tampa Bay Rays for $12 million dollars. Now we start to look and see where pitchers like Ervin Santana and Ubaldo Jimenez end up signing as we get closer to the start of spring training.

The NBA announced the starters for the All Star game. The Eastern conference starters are LeBron James and Dwayne Wade of the Miami Heat. Paul George of the Indiana Pacers. Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks and Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Western conference starters are Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers. Kevin Love of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Stephen Curry of the Golden State warriors and Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers. This is the fan voting and these are the players voted to start by the fans. Bryant is injured and probably won’t play; so he’ll be replaced as a starter. You also have to wonder if wade will be ready to go by the All Star game as he has missed the last four Heat games with a knee injury. With every All Star game where the starters are selected by fan voting there was some complaints about the starters. For me I think the biggest omission from the starting line up is LaMarcus Aldridge of the Portland Trailblazers. While I’m sure Aldridge will make the All Star team it would’ve been nice to see him get the fans votes to start the game. Aldridge is an M.V.P. candidate and the Trailblazers are 32 – 11; two games behind the Thunder in the Northwest division. I’m sure you have your own snubs. Who do you think should start the All Star game?

It’s the NFL’s week off before the Super Bowl and this season they’re playing the Pro Bowl on the week off. They had a draft to pick the teams and I tried to watch it and just couldn’t. It’s an idea they stole from the NHL where two captains pick the teams. In this case it was Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders picking the Pro Bowl teams. While the NHL has stream lined their draft and it runs quickly and smoothly the NFL’s was a lot of fluff and way, way too much time between draft picks. I hope the NFL noticed the issues with this set up and can get it corrected by the time they do this next season. I doubt it will make any difference at all in the Pro Bowl itself as the game isn’t taken seriously by the players. Oddly the Pro Bowl still does very good ratings. While I’ll flip over to the game from time to time, but can never watch the entire game. Do you watch the Pro Bowl?

So how was your week?

You can follow me on Twitter @Burketime

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Today (Saturday) starts round 2 of the NFL playoffs. In our picks last week Mr. Fantasy grabbed a one game lead at 3 – 1. Dan the Man is right behind him at 2 – 2. Sadly my week didn’t go as well as I ended up 1 – 3. Our first game today has the New Orleans Saints going to Seattle to take on the Seahawks. On the show last night (Friday) we all picked Seattle to win this game. This is a rematch of a week 13 game that Seattle won 34 – 7. The second game today has the Indianapolis Colts traveling to Massachusetts to take on the New England Patriots. Mr. Fantasy and I have taken the Patriots to win this game, but Dan the Man believes the Colts will pull out a road win. Sunday’s games have the San Francisco 49ers vs. the Carolina Panthers and the San Diego Chargers vs. the Denver Broncos. To get out picks on these games and a review of Saturday’s games you can listen to Mr. Fantasy and I at 11:00 a.m. Sunday morning on http://www.blogtalktradio.com.

The Masahiro Tanaka sweepstakes officially got under way this week when Tanaka had his first meeting with a major league team. In a bit of a surprise the Chicago White Sox where the first team to make their pitch to Tanaka. Living in the Chicago area the talk was more that the Cubs where the team that was going to go after Tanaka and the White Sox where hardly even mentioned. I’m sure this is just the start of team after team making their pitches to try to sign Tanaka.

The Hall of Fame added three more members this week as Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas won election into the hall. All three where on the ballot for the first time. Craig Biggio missed getting into the Hall of Fame by just two votes. The sad part of this is that there hasn’t been a lot of talk about how great Maddux, Glavine and Thomas are, but of the stunt that one voter pulled. Dan the Man and I went back and forth about this on Tuesday’s show; so I don’t want to get into all of the details here. I know there’s been a lot of talk about the voting process, but my question is what do you think they got wrong? Is there someone in the Hall of Fame that shouldn’t be or is there someone not in that should be.

There was a story out there this week that the NHL may stop sending players to the Olympic games. While it’s nice to see the various NHL players go to the Olympics and represent their country, but what you have to understand is this happens during the regular NHL season. No other sport shuts down its regular season games to allow players to go and play for another team even though it is the Olympics. I enjoying watching the Chicago Blackhawks play for their countries in the Olympics, but I understand why the owners don’t want to continue to let them go and play. I think the bigger question might be if the NHL players stop going to the Olympics will hockey continue to be an Olympic sport.

So how was your week?

You can follow me @Burketime

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I’ve heard lots of talk this week on the various sports shows I watch that they don’t like the way the 1st round of the NFL playoffs are set up. The complaint is the San Francisco 49ers who had a 12 – 4 record this season have to go on the road to play the Green bay Packers who had a 8 – 7 – 1 record. The Packers won the NFC North while the 49ers finished a game behind the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC West. The other NFC 1st round match up has the same set up as the new Orleans Saints who finished the regular season at 11 – 5 have to play the Philadelphia Eagles in Philadelphia. The Eagles had a 10 – 6 record, but won the NFC east. So if you take these home games away from division winners; what do you get for winning your division? If winning a division doesn’t matter why do we have them? If this is changed, the NFL should just go to two conferences the NFC and the AFC because winning your division or even being in a division would become meaningless. Yes its a tough break the 49ers and the Saints have to go on the road for the 1st round of the playoffs, but if they didn’t want to travel they should’ve won their division. Dan the Man and I talked about this on Friday’s show and I just believe that a team deserves a home game for winning it’s division.

We have two games today (Saturday) and two games tomorrow (Sunday) to start wild card weekend. Do they still call it that? Game 1 had the Kansas City Chiefs vs. the Indianapolis Colts. This is a rematch of a week 16 game which Indianapolis won 23 – 7. Andrew luck threw for 241 yards and 1 touchdown while Donald Brown scored the other Colts touchdown and led the team in rushing with 79 yards. Jamaal Charles scored the Chiefs lone touchdown and had 106 yards on 13 carries. Can Indianapolis repeat this and get another win?

Saturday’s game 2, is one of the games I mentioned before the New Orleans Saints vs the Philadelphia Eagles. LeSean McCoy led the NFL in rushing yards with 1607 yards and Nick Foles has been a surprise at quarterback since taking over the starting job. While Foles threw for 27 touchdowns during the season the amazing stat is that he only threw 2 interceptions the entire year. The Saints have ruled out leading rusher Pierre Thomas for this game with an injury. You’d think that Mark Ingram would get an added work load with Thomas out but Darren Sproles may see a few more carries as well. Of course the Saints go as Drew Brees goes 5162 passing yards and 39 touchdowns for Brees this season. The weather may get rough during this game; so will have to see if it affects either of these high-powered offenses.

On Sunday morning at 11:00 a.m. Mr. Fantasy and I will cover the games for that day. The first game is the San Diego chargers vs. the Cincinnati Bengals. Game two is the San Francisco 49ers vs. the Green Bay Packers.

Just so we’re on the record here since two of these games will be played before you hear us on air are picks are. Dan the Man has the Colts and the Saints for Saturday’s games. Mr. Fantasy has the Chiefs and the Saints and I’m going with the Colts and the Eagles. To find out our picks for Sunday you’ll have to tune in and find out. Sports Time Radio

I’ve decided that this Masahiro Tanaka talk is out of control. There are so many reports about which teams are in the running for him and who might not pay as much. Just yesterday I heard that the Seattle Mariners where the new front-runner but it’s being reported in Chicago that the Cubs won’t be out bid for Tanaka. The dark horse team seems to be the Arizona Diamondbacks while reports are the Yankees and the Dodgers won’t pay as much as people have been saying they would. It’s looking more and more like Tanaka will be getting over $20 million dollars a season for as much as 7 years. While he is only 25 that’s a long time to lock up a pitcher who hasn’t proven himself in the majors. Maybe someone should ask the Boston red Sox about Daisuke Matsuzaka. Remember him?

While the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Dallas Mavericks Friday night 119 – 112 they suffered a big loss. Point Guard Chris Paul suffered a separated should and is going to miss 3 to 5 weeks. Paul is considered by most experts to be the best point guard in the NBA. Paul was averaging 19.6 points per game and a league high 11.2 assists per game. If you’re looking to plug a hole in your fantasy line up with Paul out Darren Collison should be the guy to fill in while Paul is out.

So; how was your week?

You can follow me on Twitter @burketime8

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How was your Week? (12/28/13)

Posted: December 28, 2013 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, football, hockey, sports, Uncategorized
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So how many NBA games did you watch on Christmas day? I watched all of the Chicago Bulls win over the Brooklyn Nets. I also watched all of the Oklahoma City Thunder’s win over the New York Knicks. I only made it about half way through the Miami Heat victory over the Los Angeles Lakers. I managed to catch a total of about half of the game where the Houston Rockets defeated the San Antonio Spurs. I was unable to see any of the last game a Golden State Warriors win over the Los Angeles Clippers. The teams also wore jerseys with sleeves. Most of the people I heard talk about the jerseys didn’t like them but I actually did. I’d have to guess that the NBA referees didn’t like the jerseys since there where no numbers on the back and they had to search for the players number to make foul calls. It will be interesting to see if the NBA will pull these jerseys out again this season or if we’ve seen the last of them for now?

It’s week 17 in the NFL and there are two win and you’re in the playoffs games. Aaron Rodgers returns for the Green Bay Packers as they take on the Chicago Bears Sunday at 3:25 p.m. The winner of this game wins the NFC North and gets a playoff spot. While the Packers have Rodgers back, Clay Matthews had surgery on his thumb and is ruled out for this game. The Bears are a slight favorite in this game and a lot of the experts are picking Chicago to win this game and claim a playoff spot. It’s the best rivalry in the NFL in the last week of the regular season with a playoff spot on the line. What more could you ask for? The other win and you’re in-game is for the NFC East division title. The Philadelphia Eagles play the Dallas Cowboys in the Sunday night game for what will be the only playoff spot left by the time this game kicks off. After some game playing by the Cowboys, quarterback Tony Romo had back surgery on Friday and is out of this game. The Cowboys tried to string everyone along during the week and tried to make it seemed like Romo might play in this game. I don’t think anyone believed that at all but I think they where just trying to give the Eagles something to think about. Kyle Orton takes over as quarterback for the Cowboys; they signed Jon Kitna to be his back up. It’s a lot of pressure for Orton to step into but he’s a veteran quarterback and as long as the Cowboys game plan correctly for his skill set he’ll be fine. Now I’m not saying Dallas will win this game just that Orton has a chance to play well. If you want to know who we think is going to win these games listen tomorrow (Sunday) morning (December 29th) at 11:00 a.m. on Sports Time Radio to hear who we’re going with in these two games and all the other NFL week 17 match ups.

Dion Phanuef is in talks with the Toronto Maple Leafs on a seven year deal. The money that I heard was $7 million but I would think for a player like Phanuef it would be much higher. Phanuef is the Maple Leafs leader in minutes played and plus/minus and he does this against the other teams top line most of the time. In 38 games this season Phanuef has 3 goals and 11 assists with a plus minus rating of +10 while racking up 48 penalty minutes.

In the Eastern conference the Boston Bruins in leading the way with 54 points. The Pittsburgh Penguins are on top in the Metropolitan division with 57 points. In the Western Conference the Chicago Blackhawks lead the Central division with 60 points. The Anaheim Ducks lead the Pacific division with 59 points. Sidney Crosby leads the NHL in points with 50 while Patrick Kane is 2nd with 50 points. Alex Ovechkin leads the NHL in goals with 30 while Alexander Steen is 2nd with 24. Joe Thornton leads the NHL in assists with 37 while Nicholas Backstrom and Sidney Crosby are tied for 2nd with 34. Hampus Lindholm is a +22 to lead the NHL in plus minus rating. Tuukka Rask has 4 shutouts to lead all goalies in that category.

Masahiro Tanaka was posted by his Japanese team the Rakuten Golden Eagles on Christmas day. The rumor is Tanaka wants $17 million dollars a season to pitch in the majors. Once a team signs Tanaka his Japanese team will receive $20 million dollar from the team that signs Tanaka. Tanaka was 24 – 0 with a 1.27 era, last season. Tanaka did lose a game in the Japanese World Series but did come back the very next day to close out the championship. There are a long, long list of major league baseball teams looking to sign Tanaka; so now they have 30 days to get his signature on a contract. Let the bidding war start.

So how was your week?

You can follow me on Twitter @burketime

12/7/13 How was your Week?

Posted: December 7, 2013 by Sports Time Radio in baseball
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When was the last time that baseball was front and center in December? College football has it’s conference championships going on and is headed into bowl season. The NFL is in week 14 with playoff berths on the line and it seems like baseball made all the big news this week.

The Yankees actually started the free agent signings off a little while ago when they signed catcher Brian McCann to a five (5 year $85 million dollar deal. The Yankees also got last weeks signings started by getting Jacoby Ellsbury to leave the world champion Boston Red Sox. It took a seven years $185 million dollar contract to get Ellsbury to make the switch. Then in what most experts would consider a minor signing the Yankees signed Kelly Johnson to a one year $3 million dollar contract. While Johnson spent most of his playing time last season in the outfield he has been a full-time 2nd baseman at the major league level. With these signings by the Yankees you start to wonder if they have the money to get the biggest free agent on the market; Robinson Cano. That answer was no; as the Seattle Mariners stepped up and signed Cano to an eight year $240 million dollar deal. This seemed like a quick negotiation between Cano and the Mariners and at one point in time they where reporting the deal was dead. Cano and his team including Jay – Z went to Seattle yesterday and where able to agree to this deal. Cano was far and away the best free agent on the market and while he didn’t get that ten year $300 million dollar deal that was originally thrown out their by his agents he did still get that $30 million dollar a year figure he was looking for. Seattle signing Cano came as a little bit of a surprise but in the past few seasons they have tried to sign Prince Fielder and Josh Hamilton when they where free agents. What always gets to me with these type of signings is the experts sell the player until he signs a deal, but when he doesn’t sign with a major market team they start to take shots at the player. This has already started with Cano and the Mariners. They gave him too many years and he won’t be any good-by the time the contract is at it’s end. They gave him too much money and no one else was close to paying him what Seattle did. These are just a couple of the things I heard after Cano signed his contract. It of course is a huge joke that these guys turned on Cano this fast. Of course if he would’ve resigned with the Yankees or happened to go to another big market team it would’ve been the greatest signing in the history of baseball. It gets very, very tiring listen to a guy who has praised a player turn on him so quickly after he either gets more money than they think he deserved or signs with a team they didn’t want him to sign with. I guess when a team comes to you with a big contract and a lot of money you’re suppose to turn them down and go where the experts say you should be playing. The Yankees didn’t wait long at all to bring in another big time free agent signing Carlos Beltran to a three year $45 million dollar deal. Beltran was the 2nd best free agent on the open market and wanted three years from whatever team he signed with. I’m interested to see where the Yankees go from here. Right now they have five outfielders for three position. Of course one of those outfielders can always be used as a designated hitter but that still leaves one man out. You’d guess since they went out and signed Ellsbury and Beltran that they’ll be playing full-time in the outfield. That leave Brett Gardner, Alfonso Soriano and Ichiro Suzuki for those other couple of spots. If you wanted to you could even add Vernon Wells to this mix of outfielders. With the baseball winter meetings coming up will the Yankees by looking to trade one of these extra outfielders and will they be able to get anything for one of them since most teams would think they’d be looking to trade one. While the Yankees went out and signed multiple free agents and the mariners put up the money for the top free agent there where other teams out there signing players. The Boston Red Sox where able to resign Mike Napoli for two years and $32 million dollars. The Red Sox filled there closer role by signing Edward Mujica for two years and $9.55 million dollars. The Red Sox also signed catcher A.J. Pierzynski for one year at $8.25 million dollars. The Red Sox signed Pierzynski to fill the spot of Jarrod Saltalamacchia who got a three year $21 million dollars from the Miami Marlins. The Marlins also went out and signed injury plagued shortstop Rafael Furcal to a one year deal. The Marlins also signed former Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder/1st baseman Garrett Jones to a two year deal. The Minnesota twins went out and added the starting pitching they talked about at the end of last season. The Twins added free agents Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes to their starting rotation. One outfielder the Yankees did lose was Curtis Granderson who signed a four year $60 million dollar deal to stay in New York, but with the Mets. I know there where a lot more free agent signings and I could spend days writing about all of them. There where just a few of them and there will be many, many more signings to come. Any major league team looking for a starting pitcher is waiting to see if Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka will be posted by his team. Major league baseball and the Japanese league have been trying to work out a new posting system to make it fair to all the teams. No one is really sure if the new system will be in place in time for Tanaka to be posted or if his Japanese league team the Rakuten Golden Eagles will post him under the new rules. Did your favorite team get in on these free agent signings? Did they sign the player you wanted them to?

Let me know, as I ask you. How was your Week?

You can follow me on @Burketime