Posts Tagged ‘MLB Playoffs’

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: October 12, 2016 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, football, hockey, sports
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Week 5 of the NFL season is in the books and our pick contest continues to roll along. Schaumburg Stu won Week 5 with a record of 10-4. Dan the Man, Mr. Fantasy and I all finished Week 5 at 8-6. On the season Schaumburg Stu is in the lead with a record of 47-30. Dan the Man is in 2nd at 44-33. I’m holding down the 3rd spot with a record of 39-38 while Mr. Fantasy is in the cellar at 36-41. We’re off to Week 6.

The Chicago Cubs used 4 runs in the top of the 9th against a terrible San Francisco Giants bullpen to win their NLDS series 3 games to 1. Down 5-2 going into the 9th inning it looked like this series was headed back to Wrigley Field for a Game 5 on Friday. Derek Law was on the mound to start the 9th inning, but after a single by Kris Bryant he was removed for left handed specialist Javier Lopez. Lopez didn’t do his job as he walked the left handed hitting Anthony Rizzo and was taken out of the game for Sergio Romo. Ben Zobrist greeted Romo  with a double to score Bryant and advance Rizzo to 3rd. Chris Coghlin was announced as the pinch hitter for Addison Russell; so the Giants countered by bringing Will Smith into the game to pitch. The Cubs countered that move by Putting Wilson Contreras in for Coghlin. Contreras singled off of Smith as both Rizzo and Zobrisy scored to tie the game 5-5. Jason Heyward bunted badly into a fielders choice, but a throwing error by Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford allowed Heyward to move up to 2nd base. Giants manager Bruce Bochy made a double switch as Gorkys Hernandez entered the game to play leftfield and Hunter Strickland was brought in to face Javier Baez. Baez singled to centerfield to score Heyward and give the Cubs the lead at 6-5. The top of the 9th finally ended as David ross hit into a double play, but by that time the Cubs had scored 4 runs on 4 hits and with the help of 1 Giants error had taken the lead.

The Cubs made some defensive moves to start the bottom of the 9th inning. Zobrist moved to 2nd base, Contreras stayed in the game in leftfield and Baez moved to shortstop. In the end none of those moves mattered as Hernandez, Denard Span and Brandon Belt all struck out swinging against Cubs closer Aroldis Chapman.

The Cubs now wait until Saturday to host the winner of the Los Angeles Dodgers/Washington Nationals series in Game 2 of the NLCS. The Dodgers/Nationals series is headed back to Nationals Park for Game 5 on Thursday. The Dodgers forced a Game 5 by picking up a 6-5 at home in Game 4 yesterday.

Clayton Kershaw made the Game 4 start for the Dodgers on 3-days rest. Kershaw pitched 6 2/3rd innings giving up 5 runs on 7 hits. He struck out 11 and walked 2 while throwing 110 pitches. Kershaw left the game with the bases loaded in the top of the 7th inning. Pedro Baez hit Jason Werth to force home a run and was removed from the game. Luis Avilian then gave up a single to Daniel Murphy bringing in 2 runs and tying the game at 5 apiece. Kershaw ended up with a no decision, but he ;left the bullpen in a tough spot. A Chase Utley single off Washington reliever Blake Treinen in the bottom of the 8th inning drove in the game winning run for the Dodgers. Kenley Jansen picked up the save for the Dodgers working the bottom of the 9th. Jansen struck out the first two batters of the innings and then Bryce Harper grounded out to 2nd base for the final out of the game.

With the lead in the series the Nationals choose to hold back Max Scherzer. Now they have Scherzer on regular rest for the Game 5 at home. Los Angeles turns to Rich Hill to make the Game 5 start. Scherzer took the loss in Game 1. He pitched 6 innings giving up 4 runs on 5 hits while striking out 5. Hill was the losing pitcher in Game 2. He pitched 4 1/3rd innings giving up 4 runs on 6 hits while walking 2 and striking out 7. Who do you have winning Game 5 and moving on to the NLCS?

Did you have both of the American League series ending in 3-game sweeps. Maybe you did, but I bet you didn’t have the teams right. The Toronto Blue Jays easily handled the Texas Rangers in their series to advance to the ALCS. Then it was the Cleveland Indians who where missing 2 of their top 3 starting pitchers sweeping the Boston Red Sox out of the playoffs. The Rangers did have the best record in the American League and while they where a bit of a favorite coming into the series with the Blue Jays; it’s not a huge shock that Toronto won the series. It’s a bit of a surprise that they swept, but not that they won it. In the other series the Red Sox should be nothing, but embarrassed. I can understand Game 2 as Corey Kluber is one of the top pitchers in baseball, but they got beat on games started by Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin. Both back of the rotation guys that the Indians where forced to use due to injuries to Carlos Carresco and Danny Salazar.

The only Red Sox who showed up in the series where Brock Holt who hit .400 with a home run and rookie Andrew Benintendi who hit .333 with a home run. Jackie Bradley Jr. hit .100, David Ortiz hit .111, Dustin Pedroia hit .167 and Mookie Betts hit .200. These big Red Sox hitters where shut down by a guy in Bauer who had an ERA of 4.26 this season and Tomlin who came in with an ERA of 4.40 for the season. The Red Sox where the trendy pick to win it all coming into the playoffs, but I’m sure those guys who where on that bandwagon won’t admit to being there right now.

The NHL season get sup and running tonight with 4 games on the schedule. The Toronto Maple Leafs and the Ottawa Senators will be the first two team s to drop the puck tonight. Then it’s the St. Louis Blues at the Chicago Blackhawks, the Calgary Flames at the Edmonton Oilers and the night wraps up with the Los Angeles Kings at the San Jose Sharks.

You can listen to Sports Time Radio on BlogTalkRadio.com or you can find the podcast any time you’d like at TuneIn.com

I’m on Twitter @Burketime

 

The division series have started in the MLB playoffs. The National League has one game under it’s belt while the American League teams have played two and are on a travel day today.

We’re going to work backwards here as the last game of the day was the best game of the day. The Chicago Cubs got past the San Francisco Giants in a pitchers duel 1-0. Jon Lester and Johnny Cueto both showed why they are Cy Young Award contenders as they pitched shut out baseball for 8 innings. Cueto was great pitching 8 innings giving up 3 hits and 1 run while striking out 10 and not walking anyone. They one mistake Cueto made was giving up a solo home run to Javier Baez in the bottom of the 8th inning for the only run of the game. Lester was on his game as well as he pitched 8 innings giving up 5 hits and striking out 5 while not allowing a walk or a run. Aroldis Chapman came in to pitch the bottom of the 9th and get the save. Game 2 is today 7:00 p.m. CST as Kyle Hendricks and Jeff Samardzjia are the starting pitchers as the Cubs look to go up 2-0 in the series.

The Los Angeles Dodgers took the first game of their division series 4-3 over the Washington Nationals. All the scoring in this game happened pretty early. The Dodgers got to Max Scherzer for 4 runs in the first 3 innings. The Nationals got back into the game putting up 3 runs on Clayton Kershaw over the first 4 innings of the game. Just as it looked like we where in for a high scoring game the runs stopped scoring. Kershaw picked up the win pitching giving up 8 hits and 3 runs while walking 1 and striking out 7. The Dodgers bullpen shut the Nationals down over the final 4 innings. Joe Blanton pitched 2/3rds of an inning walking 1. Grant Dayton also pitched 2/3rds of an inning walking 1 and striking out 1. Pedro Baez worked an inning then Kenley Jansen came in to get the save. Jensen gave up 1 hit I his inning of work. Scherzer went 6 innings for the Nationals giving up 4 runs on 5 hits while striking out 5. The Dodgers did get to Scherzer for 2 hone runs in the game. The Nationals bullpen matched the Dodgers bullpen as they didn’t allow a run either. Sammy Solis pitched 2 innings giving up 1 hit while walking1 and striking out 1. Nationals closer Mark Melancon got an inning of work in the game. Melancon gave up 2 hits, walked 1 and struck out 3 in his inning of work. Game 2 has a 3:00 p.m. scheduled start time as Rich Hill gets the start for the Dodgers and the Nationals turn to Tanner Roark to try to draw them even in the series.

In both American League series teams took 2 games to 0 leads, but I’m not sure they’re the teams the experts thought they would be. The Toronto Blue Jays went into Texas and swept the Rangers in the first two games of their division series. The Cleveland Indians held home field advantage as they won the first two games of their series against the Boston Red Sox.

The Blue Jays put up 10 runs in Game 1 of the series for a 10-1 win. Game 2 saw the Blue Jays get a little closer win at 5-3. Most if not all of the experts had the Rangers as the favorite in these first two games as they had Cole Hamels as their Game 1 starter and then Yu Darvish ready for Game 2. Hamels lasted just 3 1/3rd innings in Game 1. Hamels gave up 6 runs. walked 3 and struck out 1 in his start. Hamels was totally out pitched by Marco Estrada who went 8 1/3rd innings giving up 1 run and striking out 6 for Toronto. Darvish struggled as well pitching 5 inning giving up 5 hits and 5 runs while walking 1 and striking out 4. Darvish gave up 4 home runs in his 5 innings. 20-game winner J.A. Happ was the Game 2 starter for the Blue Jays and while he didn’t pitch great he pitched good enough to win with the support he got. Happ went 5 innings; he gave up 1 run on 9 hits while walking 1 and striking out 5. Troy Tulowitzki has been the breakout hitter in the first two games for Toronto. “Tulo” has a triple and a home run while hitting .556 with 5 RBI’s. The series heads to Toronto for Game 3 on Sunday. American League ERA leader Aaron Sanchez  (3.00) gets the start for the Blue Jays as the rangers turn to Colby Lewis to try and keep their season alive.

In a surprise the Indians used Trevor Bauer as their Game  starter. Corey Kluber has been battling an injury and was pushed back to Game 2 to give him some extra rest. With Cy Young favorite and 22-game winner Rick Porcello line up to start Game 1 the Red Sox looked like a heavy favorite. Bauer didn’t have a shut down type of outing, but he kept the Indians in the game and their bats came through. Bauer pitched 4 2/3rd innings giving up 3 runs on 6 hits while striking out 6. Cleveland went to there bullpen set up of Andrew Miller 2 innings and the win, Bryan Shaw who gave up a run in 2/3rds of an inning and Cody Allen 1 1/3rd of an inning getting the save as they took Game 1. Porcello pitched 4 1/3 innings giving up 5 runs on 6 hits with 3 of those hits being home runs while striking out 6. Drew Pomeranz 2 1/3rd innings, Joe Kelly 1/3rd of an inning and Koji Uehara 1 inning didn’t allow a run, but the Red Sox where unable to pull of a comeback win and the Indians took Game 1 5-4. The extra day of rest really helped Kluber, He pitched 7 innings giving up 3 hits and while he did walk 3 batters he didn’t allow a run and stuck out 7. The Red Sox countered with David Price who has had his post seasons struggles and they continued yesterday. Price lasted just 3 1/3rd innings giving up 5 runs on 6 hits; one of them a home run. Price walked 2 and struck out 3 as he fell to 0-8 in his post season career. Dan Otero and Bryan Shaw each pitched a scoreless inning in Game 2 to lock down the Indians 6-0 win and a 2-0 lead in the series. The series shifts to Boston Sunday at 3:00 p.m.for a must win Game 3 for the Red Sox. Clay Buchholz will be called on to keep the Red Sox season alive at home while Josh Tomlin is the Game 3 starter for the Indians.

Admit it you didn’t have the Blue Jays or the Indians winning the first two games of their series. Now the question is will we see either the Rangers or the Red Sox be swept out of the playoffs.

Tonight is the Sports Time Radio fantasy hockey draft. It’s an auction style draft and since we’re a Chicago based league we’ll see how much some of the Blackhawks go for. I’ve had some success in fantasy hockey and while I haven’t won the league yet maybe this will be my year. I am woefully unprepared. With the baseball playoffs going on I’ve been distracted, but I have stayed up to date with the injuries; so that should help me out. The draft is at 7:15 p.m. tonight; so I have some time to still get ready. Wish me luck.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com you can also find the podcast any time you want at TuneIn.com

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

Mr. Fantasy and I had a bounce back week in picks after a horrible Week 2. Mr. Fantasy won the week with a 12-4 record, Dan the Man and I went 11-5 while Schaumburg Stu was 9-7. Dan the Man still has the overall lead after three weeks at 29-18. Mr. Fantasy moved into 2nd at 27-21, I improved to 26-22 while Schaumburg Stu is 25-23. Week 4 has the first set of bye’s for teams; so will see how we do with fewer games.

It looks like the 10 teams are set for the Major League Baseball (MLB) playoffs. All that it looks like is left is to decide who will win the divisions and who gets the wild card spots. The Baltimore Orioles and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have locked up their respective divisions and it looks like the Oakland A’s will claim one of the wild card spots. The Detroit Tigers have a one game lead over the Kansas City Royals in the American League (A.L.) Central. It;s looking more and more like the team that doesn’t win the division will get the second wild card spot. The Royals currently have a 3 game lead over the Seattle Mariners for that second wild card spot. The Mariners picked the wrong time to have a losing streak; they’ve lost 4 games in a row going into today. While only the Washington Nationals have clinched their division in the National League (N.L.) the Los Angeles Dodgers magic number is 1 to win the N.L. West. The St. Louis cardinals have a 1 game lead over the Pittsburgh Pirates in the N.L. Central. So again one will win the division and the other will go into the wild card game. The San Francisco Giants are in the other wild card spot. It looks like the Angels and the Nationals will have the best records in their leagues and get home field through the playoffs. In our pre-season picks Schaumburg Stu and I have the Nationals winning it all, Dan the Man has the Dodgers to win the whole thing and Mr. Fantasy has the Oakland A’s as his World Series champions. So all of your picks are in the playoffs and will have to see how it plays out.

With the first three weeks of the National Football League (NFL) season in the books no team has really looked like the dominant team. There are still 3 undefeated teams. The Philadelphia Eagles, the Arizona Cardinals and the Cincinnati Bengals are all 3-0, but I don’t think the 1972 Miami Dolphins have anything to worry about this season. The 1972 Dolphins where the only NFL team to go undefeated through the season including the playoffs and every year the former players get together and toast their old team when there are no more undefeated teams left in a season. I would be very surprised if the Eagles, Cardinals or Bengals made a run at that record. Looking the other way the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Oakland Raiders and the Jacksonville Jaquars are all 0-3 and trying ti find that 1st win.

When it came to the running back position for fantasy football this season there was a big 4 and then the rest. Well those 4 running backs haven’t gotten off to great starts and you have to wonder if fantasy owners are in panic mode yet. Jamaal Charles of the Kansas City Chiefs had been banged up this season, but even when he was healthy he wasn’t putting up numbers. Charles has 9 carries for 23 yards; he’s also caught 5 passes for 23 yards. Not the weapon fantasy owners thought they where getting. Matt Forte Chicago Bears; Forte normally handles a good percentage of the chances for the Bears offense, but this season he’s not producing with those chances. Forte has 42 carries for 136 yards and 19 catches for 145 yards. LeShon McCoy Philadelphia Eagles; McCoy is averaging 2.9 yards a carry, but he does have a rushing touchdown which neither Charles or Forte have. McCoy has carried the football 60 times for 175 yards and has caught 10 passes for 64 yards. The 4th running back was Adrian Petersen. We all know the situation Petersen has gotten into; so we don’t need to go over it all again here, but from a fantasy prospective he’s a bust this season and maybe done as a football player. If you own McCoy or Forte I don’t think you have anything to worry about and they should get themselves on track. Charles however they may be some concern and it would revolve around his health. Charles has an ankle injury and is expected to participate when the team resumes practice Thursday. If you’re a Charles owner you’ll have to watch his health from game to game and see if he’s improving. Hopefully he’ll get healthy and you won’t have any concerns, but right now you’ll need to watch his status.

I hope you’re ready for the National Hockey League (NHL) season to start. October 8th is opening night with 4 games on the schedule. The Montreal Canadians and the Toronto Maple Leafs kick things off in Toronto. A half an hour after that the Philadelphia Flyers are in Boston to play the Bruins. Then there are 2 late starting games. The Vancouver Canucks are in Calgary against the Flames and the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings host the San Jose Sharks. With the regular season close to getting underway a lot of experts are taking the Chicago Blackhawks to win the Stanley Cup. This of course is good news for us here at Sports Time Radio since the show is based in the Chicagoland area. It would be nice to see the Blackhawks win another cup, but there are a lot of good hockey teams out there. I’m sure will make are picks before the regular season gets started; so you’ll have to tune in and see who we go with.

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