Tonight on the radio version of News, Notes and Rumors

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We talk a little baseball in honor of opening of the season.

 

Chris Schad feature writer for the Twins joins us to talk about the AL Central.

 

Tony Williams, beat writer for Metro New York Paper joins us to talk NFL and NBA

 

Steve Gallo of the USA Today sports department joins us to talk about Bountygate.

 

Corey Hanley feature writer for the Orioles joins us to preview the AL East.

 

Happy Easter to all.

 

 

NNR at 6PM EDT follows the Moohead show at 5PM on http://mooheadradio.com/2.0/.  Press the Green arrow at 6 for NNR.

Join Mr. Moohead  on http://mooheadradio.com/2.0/ after early Cavs games for his post-game chat.

 

 

The archive of the show is available the following day at http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

 

Be part of the show by calling our SportSims.com hotline at 216-539-0607.

 

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com and was a senior writer for .  He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/.

He edits .  

 

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Niblets for July 2010

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NOTE:  We will finish our question mark review for the NFC South and West Thursday.

Best comment of the month:

teeth whitening gets the comment of the month again. Comment on LeBron is LeGone to Miami I wonder if the incentives in the contracts for the beach boys are going to impose problems during their season? What if one of the players decides to pad their stats instead of playing team ball and set off the egos.

TW, I think we have a new name for the guys in South Beach–the Beach Boys. Well done and thanks for reading our site.

Updates on previous columns:

LeBron, Gilbert, Miami and Cleveland The Heat added F Juwan Howard, Joel Anthony, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Jamaal Magloire and rookies Dexter Pittman and Patrick Beverley. Z is nearly useless and was at the end of the bench during the Cavs run in the playoffs last season. Howard is not what he used to be but will help. Magloire gives the heat some physical play inside at C.

The Cavs have done very little to add talent despite owner Gilbert’s statement. The fact is that if the team could not attract a top UFA with LeBron on the roster, they will have no luck getting one now.

Baseball Heads Down the Back Stretch The rich (Yankees) get richer and traded for Lance Berkman and Austin Kearns, along with reliever Kerry Wood. The Cubs and the Indians continue to be some of the best minor league teams in baseball by giving up talented players for nothing. Even so, the Rays took sole posession of 1st place by beating the Yankees 2 out of 3 last weekend.

The Rangers got the best pitcher on the trading block by getting ex-Indian and former Cy Young Award winner Cliff Lee from Seattle and catcher Bengie Molina from the Giants.

Questions in the NFC East and North training camps The injury to Cowboy 1st round pick WR Dez Bryant is the feared “high ankle sprain.” He may be ready for the opening game but that will give WR Roy Williams a chance to earn his money and establish himself as the starter. He won’t but will start for the first 6 weeks.

Niblets fresh from the cob:

The Raven’s D backfield took another major hit when Domonique Foxworth’s season ended with an injury. They traded QB John Beck to the Redskins for unproven CB Doug Dutch. Beck was at one time the QB of the future for the Dolphins.

The latest rumor is that Bret Favre is not coming back. We have heard that before and we will see. If he is not coming back, the Vikes will struggle to win their division let alone get deep in the playoffs.

The Pats have taken WR Wes Welker off the PUP and he is expected to be close to 100% by the start of the season. That is great news for Tom Brady.

There are only a couple of rookies unsigned as of today. That includes 2nd over all DT Ndamukong Suh. He was reportedly asking 50M guaranteed. But according to his agent, that is not the case.

Raven 2nd round pick LB Sergio Kindle fell and will be out for several weeks with a cracked skull. He has been diagnosed with Narcolepsy.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on

and edits .

Technorati Tags: LeBron,NBA,NBA Playoffs,Heat,Cavilers,Cubs,Yankees,Indians,Rays,Rangers,Beach Boys,Trade deadline,Ravens,Patroits,Favre,Vikings
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Baseball Heads Down the Back Stretch

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all star game 2010

Baseball Heads Down the Back Stretch

Now that the All Star game is over, we need to take a look at the standings and project what might happen from this point to the final weeks of the season.

The trading deadline is coming up and there are a few names floating around that could help a contender. Some deals have already been made. The biggest deal was SP Cliff Lee going to the division leading Rangers. He gives the team the one thing they did not really have–a true #1 starter. Even with the team’s financial problems, they decided to go for it all this year.

The Jays and Braves traded SS with Alex Gonzalez going south in a five-player deal along with 2 minor leaguers for SS Yunel Escobar and LHP Jo-Jo Reyes. The Braves needed a little more O and Gonzalez should help. Escobar has been at best inconsistent.

The Jays are in 4th in the tough AL East and have put out the word that RPs Kevin Gregg, Scott Downs and Jason Frasor are available. They are looking to build for next year. Several teams might be interested in Gregg who has converted 20 of 23 save opportunities.

SP Roy Oswalt is the most attractive guy out there. The White Sox are looking at him but he is 32 and is scheduled to get 16M in 2011 and 12.

AL East

The Yanks are leading and Rays are still close just 2 games behind. Both went 8-2 before the break. The Red Sox have fallen and can’t seem to get up. They went 4-6 in the last 10 and are 5 games behind. With all the Sox injuries, it is less and less likely that they can keep up.

AL Central

The White Sox lead by just a half game over the Tigers. The Sox are depending on pitching and the long ball because they are hitting just .257 as a team. They are 3rd in home runs with 100. The Tigers are hitting .275.

AL West

Texas has a 4.5 game lead over the Angels. The Rangers have the best lead in the AL and Lee will only help them win the division. Beyond that who knows.

NL East

The Braves have profited from the Mets stumble over the last 10. The Braves expended the lead to 4 games by going 7-3 while the Mets went 4-6.

NL Central

The Reds have a been traded places with the Cards all season. That will continue as long as the Reds pitching holds up. It won’t and the Reds will fall out of the race in the middle of August. Nobody else in the division is a factor.

NL West

The Padres are 2 games ahead of the Rockies but need both a pitcher and a bat. They won’t get either before the trading deadline but still should hold on to win the NL Weak.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for http://NFLDraftDog.com and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on  and edits .

Technorati Tags: MLB,MLB Playoffs,Oswald,Lee,Yankees,Rays,Red Sox,Tigers,White Sox,Rangers,Angels,Braves,Mets,Reds,Cardinals,Padres,Rockies

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Sports Buffet for 06/15/10

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NFL

The lower round rookies are beginning to sign. The deals are too scattered to give you a good analysis but look for the top picks to have some extended holdouts. The league ownership is in a penny pinching mood. The best indication of that is the fact that none of the usual sources have the financial data on the rookie deals. Given the concern over what the next CBA might look like and the economy still being in the tank, owners won’t quickly let the agents talk them into big increases over last year.

The RFAs are also signing. Today, the teams have the option of lowering any unsigned RFA to 110 percent of the salary the player made last year. In most cases the teams will do this for those players that they consider reserves or not critical to their long term plans.

NBA

The Celtics lead in the finals now 3-2. It is hard to get a handle on this series because each team looks unbeatable in one game but then lays an egg in the next one. While some of the differences in the games is due to injuries and foul trouble. But that can not explain it all.

I wonder if Boston has one more effort like Game 2 in them. If they lose tonight, they will not win the series.

MLB

The Yankees have clawed their way back into a tie for the lead in the AL East. They were helped by the Rays going 5-5 over the last 10 games. Boston has started to play a little better and is only 4 games behind.

Texas is hanging in the lead in the AL Weak. The Angels are just one game behind. Neither of them are playing well enough to worry any of the AL East teams come playoff time.

Atlanta had a 4.5 game lead last week but went 5-5 in the last 10 to allow the Mets to sneak back to just a game and a half back. The Phillies are still not playing well and have to face the Yankees this week in inter-league games.

Cincy and St. Louis are still in a tight race for 1st in the NL Central. The Padres, Dodgers and Giants are grouped together like peas in a pod in the NL West.

College football

For a while the Big 12-2 was on life support. But the keystone team–Texas–decided to stay and that kept the league together despite losing Nebraska to the Big 10+2 and Colorado to the Pac10+1. They key was MONEY!! Imagine that! The Big 12-2 promised Texas that they could have their own network deal and that saved the conference. There is a good chance that both the Big 12-2 and the Pac10+1 will add teams in the near future. Look for TCU and 1 other team (possibly Houston or Tulsa) to get an invitation to the Big 12 and Utah to get a ticket to play in the Pac 10.

The bottom line here is that college football has not changed all that much. I predicted that Texas would not join another conference months ago when the Big 10 was romancing it.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on

and edits .

Technorati Tags: NFL,NFL Draft,RFA,CBA,Collective Bargaining agreement,Celtics,NBA FInals,Lakers,MLB,NBA,College Football,Big 12,Big 10,Pac 10,Yankees,Red Sox,Rays,Rangers,Angels,AL East,AL West,AL Central,NL East,NL Central,NL West,Braves,Mets,Phillies,Reds,Cardinals
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Baseball needs to upgrade Umpires NOW!

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                       MLB Umpire Foster

MLB’s reputation has taken major hits from the steroid scandal, missing the playoffs because of a strike and leadership of the some times blind but always intellectually challenged Bud Selig. But there is a bigger problem with the game—the ineptness of some of its umpires.

Umpire Marty Foster covered 3rd base last night sort of. At least he was paid to do that. In the first inning he called Derek Jeter attempting to steal 3rd. The ball got there in time but Jeter was never tagged. Jeter complained to Foster and was reportedly told that he didn’t have to be tagged to be out. When Jeter told Yankee manager Joe Girardi what Foster had said, Girardi exploded and got thrown out of the game for arguing the call. Maybe someone should buy Foster a copy of the MLB rule book. Even if they did, I doubt he would read it.

The umpires were already under the gun for inaccurate ball and strike counts. New technology has proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that umpires are not able to tell a strike from a ground hog. Baseball has always said that it can live with a wider than legal strike zone as long as the calls are consistent for both sides. But the only consistency is how inconsistent the calls are. The union is fighting any use of instant replay including the limited use now approved. They want to keep the ineptness of their members a secret. But we all know they are inept. The sport needs instant replay to correct the most egregious mistakes.

The umpires are above criticism by players, team managers, and owners. Baseball fines and can suspend those individuals for saying anything negative about the boys in blue. Fortunately, there is nothing that the union can do to me. Unfortunately, there is very little I can do to the union as well.

If baseball ever wants to convince people like me that the game is fair, it is going to have to use instant replay to eliminate the stupidity and bumbling calls of their umpires. Balls and strikes need to be called mechanically. The existing technology can do that as fast as the umpire behind the plate but with total accuracy. Errors in calls on the bases need to be corrected real time as well.

The game deserves better. The players that work so hard hopefully with out the assistance of steroids deserve better. Most of all, the fans that pay to see the travesty laughingly referred to as MLB and those that buy the products that support the game deserve it as well. Unfortunately for all those people, the Umpire Union is so strong that instant replay will never be used beyond those approved now. In fact, look for the union to negotiate that use out of their next contract.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: Foster,Jeter,Yankees,Girardi,Umpires,Selig,union technology,instant replay
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  • Author:
  • Published: May 8th, 2009
  • Category: MLB Baseball
  • Comments: Comments Off on The Commissioner suspends the entire National League for 50 Games!

The Commissioner suspends the entire National League for 50 Games!

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By Bill Smith

Just kidding, but if things keep going they way they have been it could happen. Baseball thought it finally had a handle on the steroid problem—not so much. What it does have is the very short end of a very long stick.

Manny Ramirez of the LA Dodgers is the latest one to be caught. He was taking female fertility drug HGC. He reportedly was prescribed the drug by a doctor in Florida. HGC was added to the no-no list in 2002. He has been suspended for 50 games—the first failed drug test by a player in the program. According to team mates, Manny brings leadership any locker room west of the Massachusetts boarder. Baseball can only hope he isn’t leading players to massive suspensions. To the further frustration of baseball, Jose Canseco said that Manny was using in his first book Juiced. Maybe Canseco is a member of the psychic network.

The reason that Baseballs stick is so long for the most part is the fault of the sport’s leadership. Baseball really didn’t want to even admit there was a rock called steroids let alone look under it. Sammy Sosa went from looking like a full size Pee Wee Herman doll to having the muscles of a weight lifter in one off season. Baseball was struggling to recover from the worst “Burress” a sport can inflict on itself—the cancellation of their championship. When the home run chase started bringing people back to the ballparks around the league, Baseball league management and the players union looked the other way. Not one of them on either side of the labor/management divide wanted to know the truth. Now both are paying the price for their blindness.

This scandal is worse than any in the history of the game not only because it taints the game worse than any other but that it involves every team and many more players. 18 of 38 MVP awards over the last few years have gone to proven substance abusers according to ESPN.

This is the death by 10,000 cuts. Every time another big name is sucked into the bottomless pit of steroids, Baseball thinks things couldn’t get worse. But they always do as yet another player is disclosed.

It’s not like Baseball can afford to lose regular customers either. Even in two of the brand spanking new facilities, the attendance is lousy. The Yankees cut the price of the better seats in half. But those seats still run $500-1500 a game. Thanks to your friends in Washington, there are no rich. There were some but thanks to the downturn the stock market tanked and the 401’s have become 101’s. Washington D.C. is the only city in the US that hasn’t lost thousands of jobs. But because of the no win policy in DC, no one is showing up for games.

There is no effective test for the most used substance HGH. While dozens of testing companies are working feverishly to find one, thousands of drug enthusiasts are working just as hard to find the new drug that athletes will turn to when an HGH test is adopted. This is one war on drugs that the good guys are certain to lose.

Meanwhile, back in the Capital, the Congress is looking for anything that will increase their popularity. Right now, their approval rating on polls ranks just above that of swine flu. Baseball is an easy target that will look to Joe the Plumber like the Congress is looking out for them. As the approval rating of the Congress continues to fall faster than Skylab, attacking Baseball again for steroids will look more and more like a quick avenue for improvement.

So Baseball has a problem that it is totally unable and unwilling to solve. But it had better find a way because time is running out. So is the patents of the fans that pay the bills for those over compensated druggies.

My headline is fiction now. Let’s hope it stays that way.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

My email is [email protected]

Technorati Tags: Ramirez,Dodgers,Baseball,MLB,HGC,Canseco,Juiced,Red Sox,Sosa,Burress,Congress,Washington,Yankees,drugs
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