Posts Tagged ‘seattle mariners’

The Atlanta Braves added their third free agent of the off season as it’s being reported that they have a deal in place with utility man Sean Rodriguez on a 2-year $11 million dollar deal. Rodriguez will be entering his 10th season and he’s a career .234 hitter. Rodriguez posted career highs in games (140), home runs (18) and RBI’s (56) last season with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Rodriguez is a true utility man as throughout his career he’s played every position except for catcher. Career Stats It appears as though Rodriguez will spend time at 2nd base, 3rd base and rightfield for the Braves, but as through his career can and may fill in at the other positions.

If you’re a Braves fan I’m interested to know what you think if this signing. This signing like the other two the Braves had made are just short term. It’s two years for Rodriguez, one year for R.A. Dickey with an option for a second year and then a year long deal for Bartolo Colon.It looks as though these guys are just place holders as there younger players try to get major league ready. I guess what I really want to know is do you feel these three signings will help the Braves improve from last seasons 68-93 record.

The Arizona Diamondbacks and the Seattle Mariners made a trade this week and I have to tell you from the Mariners side of the deal I don’t understand it. The Diamondbacks acquired starting pitcher Taijuan Walker and shortstop Ketel Marte while the Mariners received shortstop Jean Segura and two minor league prospects outfielder Mitch Haniger and left handed pitcher Zac Curtis.

Now Segura did lead the National League in hits with 203 and is an upgrade at shortstop over Marte, but adding Walker to the deal hurts a rotation that had it’s issue last season. Now I get it Walker had his issues last season and was even sent to Triple-A for a short stint, but he’s just 23 years old. Walker made 25 starts for the Mariners last season tied for second most on the team. Seattle had 13 different pitchers make starts for them during the 2016 season and losing a pitcher who had a rotation spot locked up can be tough to replace. Marte is also a young player (22 years old), but looked to be the Mariners shortstop for a long time. Segura fills that role, but how do the Mariners replace Walker. The free agent starting pitching market is down this season; so you have to think they have someone from there own system in mind or will they make another trade to get a starter.

Of course the Mariners got the word every team loves to hear in a deal back PROSPECTS!. Haniger split last season between Double and Triple-A and hit .321 with 25 home runs and 94 RBI’s combined. Haniger did play 34 games for Arizona last season and hit ..229. It was just 34 games, but you have to wonder if Haniger’s skills will translate to the major league level. Zac Curtis spent time at high Class-A and Double-A before the Diamondbacks called him up. Curtis pitched in 21 games for Arizona last season. Curtis was 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA and one blown save opportunity over 13 and 1/3rd innings. Curtis has pitched strictly in relief and maybe the Mariners are looking at him as a future closer. Curtis has 53 career saves in 59 chances in the minors.

Will Arizona make Marte the everyday shortstop or is he going to be added to there three man rotation at 2nd base/shortstop. Chris Owings and Nick Ahmed are the other two guys that rotate in these positions. Owings and Ahmed both missed time with injures last season and Owings spent some time in centerfield as well. Walker may have to win a spot in the Diamondbacks rotation. As it looks like there are six pitchers for five spots, but then again the Diamondbacks could go with a 6-man starting rotation.

I guess like all trades we’ll have to wait and see how this works out for both teams, but just looking at it I think Arizona got the better end of this trade on paper. Of course we all know they don’t play the games on paper.

The Houston Rockets beat the Sacramento Kings 117-104 last night. Now it looks like just your typical Western Conference NBA game, but the Rockets set an NBA record in this game by taking 50 3-point shots in the game. The Rockets made 21 of the 50 3-points shots they took in the game. Eric Gordon took the most 3-pointers going 4 for 12. Trevor Ariza and James Harden each took 11. Ariza made 6 and Harden made 3. Ryan Anderson took 7 making 3 while Patrick Beverly took 4 making 2. Sam Dekker took 3 making 1 and Corey Brewer took 2 3-pointers and made both of his.

While we’re talking about the 3-point shot the Cleveland Cavaliers became the first team to make 20 3-point shots in back to back regular season games. The Cavaliers made 21 3-pointers in there Wednesday night win over the Portland Trail Blazers and then last night Cleveland made 20 3-pointers in there win against the Dallas Mavericks. The Cavaliers accomplished this feat in last season playoffs against the Atlanta Hawks. Now I’m sure you’re thinking that the Golden State Warriors have done this a number of times, but they’ve never done it in back to back games.

This leads me to part of the reason I don’t enjoy the NBA game. How many times in a game do you see a guy pass up a short jumper to kick it out to the 3-point line for that shot instead. The NBA seems to be a league where you either get a player driving to dunk the basketball or he throws it out to the 3-point line for that long jumper. While the dunks can be fun and exciting to watch, but players standing at the 3-point line waiting for the basketball to be passed to them isn’t great basketball to watch. I’m sure there are plenty of people out there who enjoy this style of basketball, but I’m not one of them. From time to time I’ll see a play where a team has great ball movement and it ends with them finding the open man for a 3-point bucket. I’m fine with that, but there are just way too many times where it’s one guy handling the basketball and then just tossing it out to the 3-point line for the shot. You’ll have to let me know if I’m off base here. How do you feel about the state of the NBA game right now?

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Brian Matusz (MATT-iss) is getting his first start of the year and for the Cubs since getting traded to Chicago in May.  On the other side of the diamond, getting his first start at Wrigley Field, “The King” Felix Hernandez who was activated from the disabled list eleven days ago.

Brian starts the game off with a leadoff single to Shawn O’Malley then a wild pitch puts Shawn at second bases and would make it to third on Leonys Martin’s sac bunt.  Shawn wouldn’t need the help to third as Nelson Cruz would drive him home with his 26th home run of the year.  Matusz would load the bases by hitting Kykes Seagar and walking the next two batters but does get the third out in the first.  

Brian gets the first two outs of the second but then gives up a single to Leonys Martin.  In the first, Robinson Cano strikes out but this at bat he drives in his 23rd home run of the season to put the M’s up by 4.  To continue into the third, Brian would give up a one out single and yet again gives up a two run home run this time to Dae-Ho Lee.  The Mariners are now up by 6.  That would be enough for Maddon as in the top the fourth Carl Edwards, Jr enters the game striking out the side.  

The King wouldn’t start off as easy walking Dexter Fowler and Kris Bryant but ends up striking out the rest of the Cubs lineup.  Felix would give up his first hit in the top of the fourth to Bem Zobrist but no one would score.  

Edwards would have a quick top of the fifth 1-2-3 but not so easy for The King.  Chris Coghlan leads off with a walk but is out at second as Miguel Montero forces him out.  Felix then loads the bases giving up a single to Fowler and walking Bryant.  With two outs, Zobrist gets an RBI walk.  The second run of the game happens as Felix hits Addiosn Russell but Heyward strikes out to end the inning.  

Joe Nathan enters the game in the walking Dae-Ho Lee and gives up a double to Mike Zunino.  Maddon takes the trip to the mound bringing in Travis Wood who loads the bases by walking Seth Smith.  He however gets the next here batters out to end the top of the sixth.  

Five innings, two runs on two hits would be enough for Felix as Drew Storen enters the game in the bottom of the sixth making it a quick inning.  

Pedro Strop joins the game in the top of the seventh but oddly Maddon has Wood take left field.  Strop only gives up one hit to Seagar but makes it out of top half with out adding a run.  Tom Wilhelmsen steps to the mound to give a leadoff walk to Fowler.  He would them score as Zo sends a line drive to center for his first triple of the year.  Edwin Diaz enters the game to strike out Russell.  

Strop starts the eighth by giving up a double to Zunino who is thrown out by Rizzo trying to reach third on Edwin Diaz’s ground ball.  Diaz is then forced out on O’Malley’s grounder to second.  Travis Wood comes back to the mound while Matt Szczur takes left field.  Wood then ends the inning picking off O’Malley.  

Mike Montogmery enters the game for the top of the ninth.  He gets the first two outs but gives up back to back singles to Nelson Cruz and Kyle Seagar but gets out of the inning.  Steve Cishek is brought in to close out the game for the M’s and give the King a win and starts off striking out Bryant.  Rizzo would launch a double to right, his 29th of the year.  Zo bumps him up to third with a single and Russell would bring him home with single of his own to left.  Cishek them loads the bases by hitting Jason Heyward.  With one out Wilson Contreras sends a ground ball to Seagar at third, he throws to Cano to start the double play but Cano’s throw to first is late.  The Mariners challenge but the call stands and Cubs score a run to put them down by one.  Cishek ties the game up for the Cubs with a wild pitch that scores Russell.  Matt Szcuzr’s flyout sends into extra innings.  

For the tenth inning, Aroldis Chapman retires all three batters.  Hector Rondon takes the eleventh and twelfth innings retiring all six batters.  Cody Martin finishes the game for the Mariners retiring the first six batters but starts the twelfth giving a leadoff double to Jason Heyward.  He advances to third on Contreras’s flyout to center.  With one out, Maddon decides to have Jon Lester pinch hit for Rondon.  It pays off as Lesters looks to be swinging away but at the last moment drops a bunt to the first base side, soft enough that Cishek only has time to scoop it up and toss it with his glove but it’s not in time as Heyward scores in late night walk off fashion.  

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

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Game two of the Mariners versus the Cubs.  Jake the Great Arriet is still looking for his 13th win and first win this month.  He would be taking on Wade Miley who is also looking for his first win in July in what would turn to out to be a pitchers duel.  

There would be only one batter to reach first base but it wouldn’t be on a hit.  In the 1st inning, Jake would strike out Leonys Martin but throws a wild pitch that allows him to reach.  Miley would strikeout the side in the bottom half of the 1st. 

Jake would allow two singles and walk but does not allow a run to cross the plate.  In the bottom half of the inning Kris Bryant would reach on a fielding error but Miley would pick him off and both teams would remain scoreless.  Neither pitcher again would not allow a base runner in the 5th and 6th innings.  

Jake continues to hold the M’s retiring his ninth batter in a row.  Miley would start the bottom half off by walking Dexter Fowler and would advance to second on Bryant’s single center.  Both runners would advance on Ben Zobrist’s sac bunt.  Javier Baez steps in the box and sends a ground ball to short, the throw is to home base and on the tag, he would be called out.  The Cubs would challenge the call and it out be overturned for the first run of the game.  Addison Russell strikes out for the second out of the game.  With Jason Heyward at the plate, Miley tries to pick off Baez and Bryant tries to take home.  Adam Lind would throw home and Bryant would score the second run of the game.  The Mariners would challenge the call and it would be overturned to end the inning and run would be pulled from the board.  

Jake starts the 8th by walking the first two batters and that would be enough for Maddon as he brings in Rondon who gets the first two outs and Maddon would bring Chapman in for the last out.  Leonys Martin would send a fly ball to left center scori two runs putting the Mariners up by 1.  He would then steal third with Cano at the plate and then scores the third run on a wild pitch but Chapman gets Cano to go down swinging and a blown save to go along with that.  Edwin Diaz would replace Miley and gives up a single to Heyward but gets Contreras to line out.  He would walk Miguel Montero but strikes out Rizzo and Fowler to end the inning.  

Travis Wood starts the 9th and immediately gives up a single to Nelson Cruz who is removed for pinch runner Franklin Guiterrez who makes it all the way to third base on two ground outs.  But then scores on Chris Innetta’s single to short that is thrown high for Russell’s first error in 28 games.  Travis would load the bases but gets out of the inning 

Steve Cishek enters the the bottom of the 9th striking out Bryant for the first out of the game.  He gives up a sole to Zo but then strikes out Baez and Russell to end the game and gives the Mariners a W in this series.  

Jake would go the entire month of July with out a win going 0-3.  However this would be the best start of the month for him despite the loss.  

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

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Inter-league play continues with Jon Lester searching for his 11th win of the season.  Lester is 5-4 against the Seattle Mariners donning a 3.52 ERA in 12 starts.  This is only the second time the Mariners have set foot in Wrigley Field as Hisashi Iwakuma seeks his 12th win of the season.

Lester would start the game getting Shawn O’Malley out at first but with a coaches challenge he would be called safe.  He would walk Robinson Cano but ends striking out the remainder of the batters. Iwakuma  would give up a double to Kris Bryan and walks Ben Zobrist but gets out of the inning.

Lester gives up a double in the top of the second but that would be all the action for the M’s.  Iwakuma wouldn’t be as lucky giving up back to back singles to Javier Baez and David Ross with one out.  Lester would send a sac bunt back to the pitcher advancing both runners but it would be Chris Coghlan’s line drive to center that scores two runs and Coghlan would advance to second on the throw home.  Bryant would drive Chris in on his liner to left.

Lester would give up a single to Cano and walks Nelson Cruz in the top of the 3rd but no run support for Iwakuma.  Zo leads off with a double and would score on Jason Heyward’s fifth home run of the season.  Iwakuma gives up a single to Baez but gets out of the inning.

Lester would enter the top of the 4th and strike out the side.  After 5 runs and and only 3 innings, Nathan Karns would replace Iwakuma.  Karns gives up a single to Bryant who steals second with Anthony Rizzo at the plate, who sends a ground ball to Kyle Seagar who throws to Shawn O’Malley to get Bryant out.  With Zo at the plate, Rizzo steals second but Karns gets out of the inning.

The 5th inning would only see Franklin Gutierrez singling and stealing second base as the only man to reach.

In the top of the 6th, Lester scores another 1-2-3 inning.  David Ross would lead off the bottom half with his seventh home run of the year.  Karns would then walk Lester, Coghlan and Bryant to load the bases for Rizzo.  Rizzo drives in all three runners taking an inside fastball right on the third base line for a double reaching 79 RBI’s on the year. Vidal Nuno enters the game for the Mariners giving up a single to Zo.  Jason Heyward would foul out scoring Rizzo to put the Cubs up by an even 10 runs.  Baez would sends a single to left scoring Zo and allowing the Cubs to bat through the order bringing David Ross up again but he gets called out on strikes.

Justin Grimm would replace Lester in the top of the 7th.  He’d give up a single to Chris Iannetta but gets out of the inning unscathed.  

After a not too long delay, Tom Wilhelmsen enters the game in the bottom of the 7th giving Matt Szczur a leadoff single then walks the bases loaded with Coghlan And Bryant.  Rizzo would ground out but drives in Szczur for twelfth.

Mike Montgomery would get the opportunity to face his former teammates in the top of the 8th gives up a single to Cano but gets out of the inning.  Luis Sardinas takes on the Cubs in the bottom half making it a quick inning.  

Montgomery would stay in the game for the 9th and gets the first out but gives up a single to Leonys Martin.  Then walks Iannetta but gets Sardinas to go down swinging.  O’Malley would send a line drive to left scoring Martin for thier first run of the game.  Mike then walks Franklin Guiterrez to load the bases.  With that, Robinson Cano steps up to the plate and grounds out to end the game.  Cubs dominate today!

Go Cubs Go!

Dan the Man

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Derrick Rose is a member of the New York Knicks. Now I’m not sure if Knicks fans should take Rose’s last interview as confidence in his new team or if he needs to be drug tested. Rose implied that the Knicks are a “super team” in the same class as the Golden State Warriors. Rose never specifically says who has put the Knicks in that class and uses terms like “some people” and “they’re” when mentioning who has the Knicks in that class. Golden State set a record for regular season wins with 73. The Warriors went to the NBA Finals for the second season in a row. After winning the NBA title in 2014-15 season they did lose last seasons finals to the Cleveland Cavaliers. So what did the Warriors do to try and help ensure a trip back to the NBA Finals. They signed the top free agent on the market Kevin Durant. Last season the Knicks won 32 games and didn’t qualify for the playoffs in the Eastern Conference. Now besides Rose the Knicks have added Brandon Jennings to back up Rose, Joakim Noah and Courtney Lee in free agency. Rose, Noah and Lee should join Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis in the Knicks starting line up. While it looks like a solid starting line up for the Knicks and Jennings can score off the bench I think Rose may have put up too high of expectations for his new team. If the Knicks are going to get anywhere close to the “super team” rose has said they would be, he’ll have to stay healthy and play close to the form that won him the NBA MVP award in 2010-11. Rose played in and started 66 games for the Chicago Bulls last season. Those where the most games he’s played in since his MVP season. Rose’s scoring average fell to 16.4 points per game last season. Rose has never been a great shooter especially from behind the 3-point line. 29.3% last season and for his career he’s shot 30.2% from behind the 3-point line. Are the Knicks a super team? I’m not so sold on that, but they should improve on the 32 win team they where last season and may find their way into the Eastern Conference playoffs next season. Derrick Rose Stats

It’s that time in the baseball season where everyone is trading everyone to everybody. Outside of the talk there was actually a trade this week as the Seattle Mariners and the Chicago Cubs came to an agreement on a 4-player deal. The Mariners sent left handed pitcher Mike Montgomery and and minor league right hander Jordan Pries to the Cubs for minor league 1st baseman Dan Vogelbach and and right handed minor league pitcher Paul Blackburn.

Montgomery will give the Cubs some immediate help out of the bullpen. Montgomery has appeared in 32 games for the Mariners; 2 of them being starts. He has and ERA of 2.34 on the season. Lefties are hitting just .164 against Montgomery this season. Pries is a 26 year old pitcher who was pitching in Triple-A for the Mariners before the trade. He was 2-1 with an ERA of 3.85 in 7 games. Pries has spent 6 seasons in the minors and is 40-24 with an ERA of 4.41. He’s appeared in 109 career games with 93 of those as a starting pitcher.

Vogelbach was moved up to Triple-A for the Cubs. He got just 32 at bats there and was hitting just.125. Vogelbach has spent 6 seasons in the minors. He is a career .281 hitter and has 60 home runs. Vogelbach was blocked at 1st base with the Cubs by Anthony Rizzo; so turning him into a solid bullpen piece was a smart move. Reports have also said that Vogelbach is a below average defender. Now in the American League he’ll be able to spend time as a DH. Blackburn was one of the top rated pitchers in the Cubs  organization.  Blackburn is 22 years old and has been pitching in Double-A for the Cubs. He’s made 18 starts and is 6-4 with a 3.17 ERA. Over 102 1/3rd innings Blackburn has 72 strikeouts to 26 walks.

This looks like a deal that could benefit both teams. The Cubs needed bullpen help especially left handed bullpen help. Montgomery should supply that for the Cubs and down the road there’s a chance he could move into the starting rotation, but right now his value is in the bullpen for a World Series contender. The Mariners find themselves 4 1/2 games out of the wild card and the A.L. West lead. While it’s a reasonable total and the Mariners could move up they have to jump 4 teams to get a wild card spot and that’s a lot even with 66 games left in the season. Being that the Mariners got prospects you just never know, but Vogelbach has hit at every level and will get a shot in the majors with Seattle. Blackburn is young and has good numbers, but you just never know as a pitcher. We might have to wait and see how this deal turns out for Seattle.

The Toronto Maple Leafs signed the #1 overall pick in the draft Austin Matthews to a 3-year entry level contract. Matthews 18-year old from Scottsdale, Arizona, immediately became the face of the Maple Leafs’ franchise when they selected him first in last month’s draft. Matthews deal includes the maximum entry level salary of $925,000 per year plus potential bonuses that could add up to an average annual value of $3,775,000. Matthews says he will spend most of the summer at home in Arizona, preparing for the season and the World Cup of Hockey, where he will play for the North American under-23 team in September. The Leafs also signed 23- year old forward Josh Leivo to a two-year contract. Leivo was a third round pick in the 2011 draft. The Maple Leafs are coming off a season where they won 29 games and accumulated 69 points. The 18-year old Matthews and the 23-year old Leivo are part of Toronto’s youth movement as they try to rebuild their team. Will it be enough to get the Maple Leafs into the playoffs or are they still a year away from making there?

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Thursday night football for Week 9 featured an AFC North match up. The undefeated Cincinnati Bengals hosted the Cleveland Browns. It was a close game for a half as the Bengals had just a 14-10 lead going into the locker room at halftime. Cincinnati put 17 2nd half points up and Cleveland failed to score; so the Bengals where able to pull away for a 31-10 victory. With the win Cincinnati improves to 8-0 on the season. Cleveland fell to 2-7 with the loss.

If Andy Dalton is your fantasy football quarterback you’ll be happy with the numbers he put up for you on Thursday night. Dalton went 21 for 27 and while he threw for just 234 yards he had 3 touchdowns. Dalton also had 6 rushing attempts for 5 yards; so that might be worth a point for you. Johnny Manziel got the start under center for Cleveland and while he did throw a touchdown pass his passing numbers weren’t great. Manziel was 15 for 33 for 168 yards and that touchdown. Manziel did run the football 4 times for 31 yards; so if you played Manziel in your fantasy league his numbers might end up being solid for you.

Neither team had a standout runner for you fantasy team, but a couple Cincinnati running backs had decent nights. Giovani Bernard led the Bengals in rushing Thursday night. Bernard had 13 carries for 72 yards and added 1 reception for 14 yards. Jeremy Hill ran the football 15 times for 52 yards for Cincinnati. Hill also had 1 reception,but it went for 0 yards. Cleveland’s leading rusher was Isaiah Crowell who carried the football 10 times for 38 yards. Crowell did add 3 receptions for 26 yards for his fantasy owners.

Receiving wise I really hope yoou had Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert in your line up. Eifert caught 5 passes for 53 yards on Thursday night, but 3 of his catches went for touchdowns. Mavin Jones tied Eifert for the team lead in receptions with 5 catches. Jones totaled 78 receiving yards on the night. A.J. Green didn’t have a great night for his fantasy owners. Being a top wide receiver Green is always expected to put up big points in fantasy, but the Browns held him to 4 receptions for 53 yards. If you’re in a deeper fantasy league and happened to have Mohamed Sanu in your line up he paid some dividends for you. Sanu had 3 catches for 25 yards, but added a 25 yard touchdown run. While Duke Johnson Jr. couldn’t get anything going in the run game (3 carries for 0 yards) he ended up being the Browns leading receiver with 2 catches for 38 yards, but he did score the Browns only touchdown of the night. Johnson Jr. caught a 12 yard touchdown pass from Manziel in the 2nd quarter for the Browns only touchdown in the game. Gary Barnidge who had been putting up big fantasy points from the tight end position with Josh McCown playing quarterback caught just 2 passes for 35 yards with Manziel starting. Dwayne Bowe; yes that Dwayne Bowe had 3 receptions for 31 yards and Travis Benjamin also added 3 catches for 22 yards on the night.

If your fantasy league scores individual defensive players Carlos Dunlap had 2 sacks for the Bengals; Geno Atkins also had a sack. Karlos Dansby had 11 tackles (a game high) for Cleveland while Desmond Bryant and Paul Kruger each recorded a sack for the Browns.

Both field goal kickers where perfect on the night as Mike Nugent hit a 28 yard field goal and converted all 4 of his extra point attempts. Travis Coons only had 1 extra point attempt; which he made. Coons also kicked a 27 yard field goal.

It was a turnover free game as there where no fumbles and either Dalton or Manziel threw an interception. When was the last time there was a turnover free Thursday night game?

Baseball is getting set for the off season and this week teams where making decisions on who they’d extend qualifying offers to, who’s option wouldn’t be picked up and which players would be bought out. So many of these decisions have to be made by teams that there are too many to go over. What I can go into was the trade that happen this week. The Seattle Mariners sent shortstop Brad Miller, 1st baseman/outfielder Logan Morrison and reliever Danny Farquhar to the Tampa Bay Rays for starting pitcher Nathan Karns, reliever C.J. Riefenhauser and outfielder Boog Powell. While it appears that the Mariners got the best player (Karns) in this trade Tampa Bay picked 2 players that could start for them in 2016 and a solid bullpen piece. Karns started 26 games and made 1 relief appearance last season. He was 7-5 with a 3.67 ERA as a rookie. Riefenhauser pitched in 17 games last season throwing 14 innings. He was 1-0 with an ERA of 5.52. Powell split the 2015 season between Double A (Durham Bulls) and Triple A (Montgomery Biscuits). Powell played a total of 117 games last season. He hit .295 with 3 home runs, 40 RBI’s and stole 18 bases. Miller played in 144 games for the Mariners last season. He hit .258 with 11 home runs and 46 RBI’s with 13 stolen bases. Miller spent the majority of his time at shortstop. but also played 2nd base, 3rd base and all 3 outfield positions. Morrison played in 146 games last season. He hit .225 with 17 home runs and 54 RBI’s. Farquhar had a rough year out of the Seattle bullpen. He went 1-8 with an ERA of 5.12 in 43 games covering 51 innings. In 2014 Farquhar’s ERA was 2.66 in 66 games and in 2013 he picked up 16 saves as Seattle’s fill in closer. Is it possible that this trade might actually help both teams.

The Golden State Warriors are off to a 6-0 start in defense of their NBA title. Golden State picked up that 6th win last night over the Denver Nuggets 119-104. Stephen Curry went 12 of 22 from the floor and 8 of 16 from behind the 3-point line for a game high 34 points. All the Golden State starter scored in double figures led By Curry. Harrison Barnes had 21 points, Klay Thompson scored 18 points, Festus Ezeli scored 16 points and was a perfect 7 for 7 from the field while Draymond Green added 12 points. Reigning MVP Curry is off to a great start to his season. Curry is averaging 35.5 points per game, 6.5 assists per game and is even grabbing 5.3 rebounds per game through 6 games. The Warriors haven’t scored less than 112 points in a game this season and they’ve only had 1 win by less than 15 points. The Los Angeles Clippers loss to the Warriors by 4 points 112-108 last Wednesday night. It’s still very early in the NBA season, but Golden State is the only undefeated team left in the league. Don’t forget they’re doing this with their head coach Steve Kerr out injured. Even this early in the season you have to ask; are the Warriors on their way to repeating?

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When you start talking about teams that have disappointed in the 2015 baseball season the Seattle mariners would easily make that list. When you’re team is suppose to win and doesn’t it normally cost someone their job and in Seattle it was general manager Jack Zduriencik, Zdurienck was relived of his duties yesterday (Friday); assistant general manager Jeff Kingston will fill Zdurienck role for the remainder of the season. Zdurienck took over as the Mariners general manager in 2009. Seattle finished 3rd that season with a record of 85-77. From 2010-2013 the Mariners finished 4th and never had a winning record. Things started to look up in the 2014 season as Seattle finished above .500 at 87-75. Remember the Mariners made a big splash in free agency in the 2014 off season by signing Robinson Cano for 10 years and $240 million. This off season the Mariners made another big free agent signing by inking Nelson Cruz for 4 years at $57 million that wasn’t enough to make the Mariners contenders in the American League West. The Mariners are in 4th place in the A.L. West at 60-69; 11 games behind the 1st place Houston Astros and are actually closer to the final wild card spot than in their division. Seattle trails the Minnesota Twins by 7 games for that 2nd American League wild card spot. While Cano struggled throughout the first half of the season he has performed better after the All-Star break and has his average up to .275. Cruz on the other hand has been good from the start for the Mariners. When Seattle made the signing a lot of the experts feared that Cruz’s home run totals would fall by a large margin since he’d be playing 81 of his games at SafeCo Field. Cruz has 39 home runs in 126 games so far this season; so his home runs haven’t suffered this season from playing in Seattle. Cruz is also hitting .317 with 82 RBI’s so far and if the Mariners had found their way into contention this season Cruz would be a contender to win the A.L. M.V.P. The way Cano and Cruz played didn’t have too much to do with Zdurienck being fired. Catcher Mike Zunino who showed some power at times was never able to hit well enough at the major league level and was sent to Triple-A this week. Zunino is just 24 years old, but has hit .214 in 2013 when he was called up and played 52 games. In 2014 which was Zunino’s first full season he hit .199 with 22 home runs. This season in 112 games Zunino’s batting average was .174 with 11 home runs. Maybe the time in Triple-A will get Zunino righted he’ll contribute to the Mariners future. Dustin Ackley was the 2nd player taken in the 2009 draft behind Steven Strasburg. Ackley was brought up in 2011 and played 90 games hitting .273. He never hit better than .253 again and was moved to the outfield from 2nd base. Zdurienck dealt Ackley  to the New York Yankees for Ramon Flores and Jose Ramirez at this seasons trade deadline. Ackley and Zunino weren’t the only issues with the Mariners this season. Austin Jackson (.268) is the only regular hitting better than .260. On the mound even “The King” Felix Hernandez has had his issues. Hernandez has had 3 games were he hasn’t lasted more than 4 2/3rd of an inning. On June 12th against the Astros Hernandez lasted just 1/3rd of an inning; giving up 8 runs. Just a couple of starts ago on August 15th the Boston Red Sox got 10 runs on 12 hits over just 2 1/3rd innings against Hernandez. Hernandez is 15-8 this season, but his ERA is 3.66 which would be his highest for a season since 2007. Hernandez is just 29 years old, but has thrown close to 2300 career innings; so we’ll have to see if he can bounce back next season. While Hisashi Iwakuma did pitch a no-hitter this season; he’s only made 13 starts this season because of injuries. The rest of the Mariners rotation is 26 or younger and no one has an ERA of lower than 4.20. The bullpen had it’s issues as well for Seattle. Before being designated for assignment and dealt to the Chicago Cubs Fernando Rodney was 5-5 with 16 saves, but had an ERA of 5.68 and lost his closer job to rookie Carson Smith. While Rodney is 38 years old he was coming off a career high 48 saves; he also had 48 saves in 2012 for the Tampa Bay Rays. Rodney had had his issues with closing before, but this is the first time his ERA had ballooned like that. Now of course these are just a few of the players that seem to have under performed for the Mariners this season. I’m sure you’ve heard someone in baseball say “that you can’t fire the players” so if it’s not the manager who loses his job the next choice would be the general manager; so Zdurienck was the person let go.

There are some reports out there that are saying we may not see Kyrie Irving in a regular season game for the Cleveland Cavaliers  until January of 2016. Irving has had quite a few injuries early in his NBA career, but if you remember this injury happened during the playoffs. They say this type of injury takes 3 to 4 moths to recover from and there was some talk he’d be their for opening night. It’s a confusing situation with Irving, but if he was to take the floor opening night there’s a chance he could suffer a setback or re-injure the leg and miss even more time. Rather than taking any risk, the Cavaliers may bring him along very slowly, allowing the leg to be strengthened by the time January rolls around. Irving was looking like he would break into that top tier of NBA point guards with the season he had in 2014-15. Irving averaged 21.4 points per game along with 5.1 assists per game and even kicked in 1.5 steals per game. Don’t forget that Irving out up these numbers sharing the ball with LeBron James and Kevin Love. If Irving is out until January it won;t have a huge impact on the Cavaliers playoff chances. With the Eastern conference being as weak as it is the Cavaliers with LeBron are pretty much a lock to get in and the most important thing for them would be to have a healthy Irving when the playoffs started. I know we’ve mentioned fantasy football on the podcast quite a bit, but fantasy basketball isn’t that far behind and Irving’s injury will have more impact there than in the actual NBA. Most leagues don’t have a roster spot for an injured player and it would be very tough to hold a player even one as good as Irving until January; so he may end up being the best waiver wire pick up in your league.

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A lot of free agent talent has already come off the board early this NBA off season, but there are still some quality players out there that can help your team win next season. Now I’m not talking about players like LeBron James and Marc Gasol who look like they’ll be returning to the teams they played with last season. That would be the Cleveland Cavaliers for James and the Memphis Grizzlies for Gasol. The biggest free agent left appears to be LaMurcus Aldridge. Aldridge has had a couple of meetings with the Los Angeles Lakers; it was reported that the first meeting didn’t go well. Even though Aldridge had those two meetings with the Lakers it seems that the Phoenix Suns and the San Antonio Spurs have the best shot at signing him. Damian Lillard is doing what he can to get Aldridge to resign with the Portland Trailblazers. Aldridge’s decision will have an effect on what a lot of teams do with their cap space. Once Aldridge makes his decision there will be a bit of a drop off in free agent talent, but there will still be some players that can help teams out there. Tobias Harris is a restricted free agent and he averaged 17 points and six rebounds and is only 22 years old. Restricted free agency might be scaring teams away, which means there’s a chance the Orlando Magic retain him for less than expected. Reggie Jackson showed the potential to be a solid starting point guard late last season. Since he’s a restricted free agent it’s very hard to imagine a scenario in which he leaves the Detroit Pistons. Lou Williams is the reigning Sixth Man of the Year, but has not received heavy interest from any team yet, not even the Toronto Raptors a team for which he scored 15 points per game last season. As soon as the big names are off the market, Williams will appear as a solid player for any team looking for some bench scoring. Kosta Koufos is the odd man out in Memphis now that Brandan Wright is in the fold and as one of the few good big men still available, he could get serious money from one of the teams that fails to land Aldridge. He’s a big body who can defend and every team needs one of those. David West has made it clear he wants to play for a contender and his list reportedly includes the Spurs, Golden State Warriors and Washington Wizards. At 34 years of age, he’s still a serviceable player who could help any team he joins but he will likely have to leave a lot of money on the table to land in one of his preferred destinations. Those are just a few of the players who may still be available for teams in free agency once Aldridge signs with a team. While they may not the superstar type of name you’d want your favorite team to sign every team needs those guys to come off the bench, play defense and find other ways to contribute.

Connor McDavid was the #1 overall pick in the NHL draft by the Edmonton Oilers. McDavid has been touted as the next great player and some are calling him the next Sidney Crosby or Wayne Gretzky,. Edmonton and McDavid did agreed to terms on his three-year, entry level contract with the Oilers. McDavid’s contract is worth approximately $11.3 million in total; $925,000 per year plus bonuses; the maximum allowed for an entry-level contract. Like all can’t miss prospects will actually have to wait and see how McDavid does against NHL competition before we know if he’s the talent that people think he’ll be. If McDavid is the next Crosby or Gretzky will he be able to lead the Oilers back into Stanely Cup contention?

I was a little surprised to see the St. Louis Blues, trade forward T.J. Oshie to the Washington Capitals in exchange for forward Troy Brouwer, goaltending prospect Pheonix Copley and a third-round pick in the 2016 draft. I think most casual NHL fans remember Oshie as the hero for the United States during their 3-2 shootout victory over Russia during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, but he has scored at least 50 points in each of his past three full NHL seasons. Oshie arrives with two years left on his current contract, which carries an average annual value of $4.175 million. Brouwer will attempt to fill Oshie’s role with St. Louis. Brouwer has one year remaining on his deal, worth $3,666,666 per season. A veteran, big-bodied winger with 531 career games and 255 career points, including a Stanley Cup with Chicago in 2010, Brouwer leaves Washington after four seasons with the Capitals. He registered 43 points in both 2013-14 and 2014-15.

The Columbus Blue Jackets took a chance last week acquiring Brandon Saad in a 7 player deal with the Stanley Cuo champion Chicago Blackhawks last week. Saad was a restricted free agent at the time of the deal and any other NHL team could’ve signed him to an offer sheet and there was a chance the Blue Jackets would lose him. Columbus solved that problem signing Saad to a 6 year $36 million dollar deal on Friday. The deal, which carries a $6 million salary-cap hit, will pay Saad $4 million this coming season, followed by $5.75 million in 2016-17, $6.25 million in 2017-18, $6.75 million in 2018-19 and 2019-20 and $6.5 million in 2020-21. Saad has played in 208 NHL games, totaling 52 goals and 74 assists. Last season was his best, with 23 goals, 29 assists and 12 penalty minutes, while playing in all 82 games. He had eight goals and three assists in Chicago’s playoff run.

Maybe the Seattle Mariners are looking to shake things up. It’s being reported that they’re sending pitchers  Roenis Elias, Vidal Nuno, and Tom Wilhelmsen to their Triple-A team in Tacoma with  no corresponding moves. yet. It does appear that Hisashi Iwakuma and David Hollins are about to take 2 of those spots on the Mariners roster. Iwakuma is just about ready to come off of the disabled list while Hollins who was a selection by the Mariners in the 2015 Rule 5 Draft. He has been serving an 80-game PED suspension from Major League Baseball but is now ready to make his debut with the team. If the Mariners do not add him to the 25-man roster, the team will lose him to either waivers or the Houston Astros. That leaves 1 open spot on the Mariners roster. Will they use it to add a hitter like Jesus Montero who is putting up good numbers in Triple-A. The Mariners were thought to be contenders in the A.L. West find themselves 6 games under .500 at 37-43 and 10 games behind the 1st place Astros. Getting Iwakuma back will help, but it might be too little too late for Seattle this season.

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Happy 4th of July

12/7/13 How was your Week?

Posted: December 7, 2013 by Sports Time Radio in baseball
Tags: , , ,

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?

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