Well….That Didn’t Go As Planned

J.D. Martinez, come on down! You’re the next contestant on the Price Is Righ….

price is right

No no, the price is wrong. Yes, Martinez has a lot more money today than he did two days ago, but he accepted a deal significantly less than he was seeking. For months, J.D. Martinez and his agent, Satan (ahem), I mean Scott Boras, played hardball. They stood tall and said they wouldn’t take less than 7 years, $210 million. They claimed they’d be willing to sit out the season to garner a “fair” contract.

Someone should explain the meaning of a standoff to Boras and Martinez.

Martinez, who hit a career best 45 home runs with the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks last season, signed a 5-year, $110 million contract with the Boston Red Sox Monday afternoon.

One of these numbers is not like the other….

The deal is front-loaded, so Martinez will earn $50 million over the first two years. The deal also includes an opt-out clause for Martinez after two years. With a full outfield in Boston, Martinez will serve as the primary DH, granting an occasional day off for Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi, or Jackie Bradley Jr.

On the exterior, I graciously doled out a golf clap for the Red Sox, while the Yankees’ fan in me considered smashing a vase against the wall. Martinez is a solid run producer. If he’s afforded an opportunity as the full-time DH, glaring at the “Green Monster”, he’ll duplicate his 40 home run season.

Speed Kills

dyson

Upon losing Martinez to free agency, the Diamondbacks wasted little time finding a new outfielder. Monday night, they signed Jarrod Dyson to a 2-year, $7.5 million deal. Despite never exceeding 350 at-bats in a season, Dyson has stolen at least 25 bases in 6 consecutive seasons. He’ll likely serve in a platoon with Yasmany Tomas in left field.

“The Freak” Is Back!!

lincecum

Tim Lincecum, “The Freak”, is making a comeback!! After holding a pitching showcase for a handful of MLB teams (he hit 93 m.p.h. on the radar gun), Lincecum has reportedly received a guaranteed offer to return to the mound in 2018. No team has been named in the report, however, the San Francisco Giants reportedly aren’t the winners of the Lincecum sweepstakes.

Lincecum’s last stint in MLB didn’t go smoothly, as he sported a 9.16 e.r.a. in 9 starts in 2016. In fact, he hasn’t pitched a season with a sub 4.00 e.r.a. since 2011. At 33 years old, “The Freak” has his work cut out for him, but we want to wish he and his mystery team the best of luck.

 

What do you think of these free agent signings?? Post your opinion in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

Now THAT’S What I Call A Weekend!!

There are weekends. And then there are WEEKENDS!!

All-Star festivities. NCAA basketball. MLB free agent news. NASCAR (yes, I said NASCAR). And the Olympics.

WHAT WERE YOU WATCHING?? 

NBA All-Star Weekend

You probably only watched because it snowed. They don’t care why you watch, ratings are ratings.

The 3-point shooting contest was the most exciting part of the weekend. I know, I know, just hear me out. The skills competition was boring. And the dunk contest used to be exciting, but since the superstars don’t compete, and there are no original dunks left, what’s the point?!

Devin Booker and Klay Thompson, however, put on a show from the 3-point line. Booker set a record for most points in a round, edging Thompson 28-25 in the finals.

As for the game, wait, there was a game?! Yup. And it was preceded by the worst National Anthem in the history of National Anthems. If your ears didn’t have the displeasure of hearing it, please CLICK HERE.

If you made it through the entire video without saying, “What the **** is this?!”, I have questions for you.

Team LeBron, despite injuries to nearly his whole roster, pulled off a 148-145 victory. Dunk, nice pass, 3-pointer, dunk, and oh yeah, another dunk. You didn’t miss much. LeBron took home his 3rd All-Star Game MVP Award with 29 points, 10 rebounds, 8 assists, and 1 steal.

NCAA Men’s Basketball

giphy-downsized-large

Bob Huggins isn’t happy. His West Virginia Mountaineers fell to the Kansas Jayhawks 77-69. No one likes losing, but upon closer review of the box score, you’ll see why Huggins is so upset. Kansas was awarded 35 free throws, to West Virginia’s 2. I’m not saying this game was fixed, but this game was fixed.

MLB Free Agency

Hosmer_1280_0sh8fqay_hqed0hqq_0

MLB free agents are finally finding homes. Some will be able to afford nicer homes than others. Eric Hosmer could buy every one of his teammates a mansion if generosity took hold of his body. Late Saturday night, Hosmer signed an 8-year, $144 million deal with the San Diego Padres. It sounds worse than it is. Hosmer is a consistent run producer with a .284 career batting average. There are worse 1st baseman to lock down for the next 8 years. You’re next J.D. Martinez….

NASCAR

I vowed I’d never write about NASCAR. Never say never.

(You’re welcome Mike).

So, apparently this was Danica Patrick’s last Daytona 500. The 35-year old will be retiring this year and wanted to go out with a bang. Oh, she went out with a bang alright. On the 102nd lap of a scheduled 200 laps, Patrick was involved in a 517-car crash, ending her day, and career, early. I guess she couldn’t get her pre-race, Aaron Rodgers’ kiss out of her mind.

danica

As for the race, Austin Dillon captured his 1st Daytona 500 victory. Dillon became the 2nd Daytona 500 winner to win after only leading for 1 total lap. What the what?! What kind of “sport” is this?!

Oh, right….  

Olympics

Have you ever been sucked into the black hole of television. That’s curling at the Olympics. It’s like planning to lay down for 2 minutes and waking up 8 hours later (that was me — last night).

And then they switch over to the Biathlon. Because ya never know when you’ll need to shoot a rifle while cross-country skiing.

fourcade

Apparently Martin Fourcade likes photo finishes. After missing out on Gold by 3 centimeters in the 2014 Olympics, Fourcade won by the same margin on Sunday in the Biathlon. Now that’s riveting television.

 

Tell me what you watched this weekend in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

One Raindrop Can Open The Floodgates

This is a weird time for Major League Baseball.

 

With approximately 100 unsigned free agents, the majority of MLB teams have multiple holes to fill. If this were December 16th, it’d be a non-issue. However, MLB is entering unchartered territory. This nonsense is about to effect my fantasy baseball research!! Just three days before every team’s first spring training workout, many big name, free agents remain on the market:

J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Jake Arrieta, Alex Cobb, and Lance Lynn. 

jd-martinez_10kq9wsp0tfm91c41f9vmes257

Maybe, just maybe, Thursday was the first raindrop that’ll open the floodgates. Three free agents signed on the dotted line:

Andrew Cashner (SP – Baltimore Orioles)

Jaime Garcia (SP – Toronto Blue Jays)

Eduardo Nunez (3B/OF – Boston Red Sox)

I know what you’re thinking. These aren’t household names!! What are you talking about?!

Listen, sometimes there’s an unsung hero behind a revolution. Everyone relax. I’m not comparing the American Revolution to the 2018 MLB free agency battle, but these low-level signings could be John Adams. It’s time for a history lesson I see….

John Adams was disliked in Congress. Despite having the ideas to bring the North and South together, he couldn’t be the face of the revolution. Instead, Thomas Jefferson became the face of the Declaration of Independence.

John Adams = Andrew Cashner

Thomas Jefferson = J.D. Martinez

Once all these big names have signed contracts for the 2018 season, no one will remember where, and when, Andrew Cashner signed. They will, however, remember J.D. Martinez.

I applaud those who made it through the history lesson without falling asleep on your keyboard.

Andrew Cashner

Andrew-Cashner

Andrew Cashner is a right-handed starting pitcher. Thursday, he signed a 2-year, $16 million deal with the Baltimore Orioles. For those who don’t know me, I don’t often sugarcoat things. And I’m not about to start now.

Andrew Cashner sucks. Like, a lot. The fact that he’s about to get paid $16 million to throw baseballs (rarely for strikes) is absurd. Cashner is going to get ripped to shreds in the American League East.

Jaime Garcia

jaime garcia

The fact that Jaime Garcia is set to make $10 million this season is sickening. Parents, listen up….

Have your baby do everything with their left hand. At the age of 2, put a baseball in their hand, and have them throw strikes every day until they reach the Major Leagues. Then, promptly retire.

Eduardo Nunez

eduardo nunezOver the past 2 seasons, life in San Francisco and Boston afforded Eduardo Nunez full-time playing opportunities. He didn’t disappoint. Thursday, Nunez signed a 1-year deal with the Red Sox for an undisclosed amount. This deal is pending a physical, which after last year’s knee injury, isn’t a slam dunk. Stay tuned on this one.

 

Will Thursday’s free agent signings get the ball rolling?? Or will players remain in a stalemate with ownership?? Spill your guts in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:10 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

What Do You Mean ‘Double Check’ My Sources?!

jay bruce 2

The world has been waiting….

Waiting for the dominoes to start falling in Major League Baseball. Who knew that first domino would be a fake report?! Wednesday morning, multiple sources reported Gerrit Cole had been traded from the Pittsburgh Pirates to the Houston Astros. By Wednesday afternoon, we had learned this report was as make believe as the Easter Bunny. Sorry parents. Apparently, some journalists prefer being 1st and wrong over being 2nd and right.

See, this is a fun time for MLB; the offseason. The time when rumors fly, money gets tossed around, and players potentially relocate. Until Wednesday, this offseason had been notoriously slow. Just 30 of the 160 potential free agents had signed with their respective teams. Over the past 2 days, free agency has built up speed. It turns out, all it needed was a little nudge from a fake report.

These new deals are 1-year contracts in order to avoid arbitration:

  • Cody Allen – $10.575 Million (Indians)
  • Khris Davis – $10.5 Million (Athletics)
  • Patrick Corbin – $7.5 Million (Diamondbacks)
  • Miguel Gonzalez – $4.75 Million (White Sox)
  • Mike Zunino – $2.975 Million (Mariners)
  • Randal Grichuk – $2.6 Million (Cardinals)
  • Zach McAllister – $2.45 Million (Indians)
  • Jake Marisnick – $1.9 Million (Astros)
  • Tommy Kahnle – $1.3125 Million (Yankees)

Arbitration is a legal process used when a player (prior to becoming an unrestricted free agent) and team can’t come to terms on a 1-year contract. Both the player and team submit their proposed salary contracts to a 3rd-party, neutral arbitrator. The arbitrator then determines a fair salary based on the player’s statistics. Despite retaining the rights to said player, arbitration isn’t generally the 1st step in a long-term, healthy relationship.

While everyone’s attention turned to 1-year contracts, and a fake report, the New York Mets swooped in and ACTUALLY signed a contract paying out more than $12 per year. On Wednesday, the Mets came to terms with Jay Bruce on a 3-year, $39 million contract. While Bruce isn’t a hop on my back and ride to the playoffs type of guy, he’s a solid offensive outfielder. On a team (as cheap as the Mets) lacking offense, I like this deal for the Mets.

Only 2 bigger contracts have been signed, so far, than Bruce; Carlos Santana and Wade Davis. Santana signed a 3-year, $60 million contract with the Philadelphia Phillies on December 20th. This makes the Bruce deal look even better. As for Davis, his 3-year, $52 million contract with the Colorado Rockies makes him the highest paid relief pitcher (per year) of all-time. We’ll see how he enjoys the “comfort” of pitching in Coors Field.

With just over a month until pitchers and catchers report, expect an avalanche of dominoes to fall in the near future. Here are the biggest, unsigned names:

J.D. Martinez, Jake Arrieta, Eric Hosmer, Lorenzo Cain, Mike Moustakas, and Yu Darvish.

MLB Free Agency, a time when wildly overpaying players has become America’s new pastime.

 

What do you think of the Jay Bruce contract?? Does Wade Davis deserve to be the highest paid reliever of all-time?? Post your thoughts in the comment section below.

You can now find me on the Radio too. Download the TuneIn Radio App and search OWWR. I’ll be on live every Wednesday from 6:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M EST. I also broadcast every show on Facebook Live via my DaveTalksSports.com Facebook Page: http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports .

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like my page on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. You can also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel: DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading!! Now go tell all your friends!!

 

American League Central Predictions

Today, we will take a look at our first American League Division; the American League Central.  I will preview each team and give you my bold predictions for the upcoming season.  Here is a quick look at how each team finished last season:

2012 American League Central Final Standings:

                                                        W   L

Detriot Tigers:                                 88-74

Chicago White Sox:                        85-77

Kansas City Royals:                       72-90

Cleveland Indians:                         68-94

Minnesota Twins:                           66-96

Ah, the 2012 Minnesota Twins.  What a major disappointment they were huh?  No one was crowning them World Series champions prior to the 2012 season, but I think we all expected them to be above .500.  The Twins started out with a horrid record, and as the season continued it only got worse.  They finished dead last in the American League Central, a horrible 30 games under .500.  There is good news for 2013.  I don’t think it is physically possible to be as bad as they were last year.  That means there is only one way to go; up.  The Twins lost speedy outfielders Denard Span and Ben Revere, and they are hoping Darin Mastroianni can be their starting center fielder of the future, their leadoff hitter, and can blossom into a star.  I think he is a nice little player, but his strikeout rate is too high and his batting average is too low for me to say he’ll be a difference maker in Minnesota.  They also added Vance Worley and Mike Pelfrey to their starting rotation.  Mike Pelfrey after one solid year for the Mets in 2010, has underachieved beyond belief (if only I were 6’7″).  I don’t see the change of scenery being the difference for Pelfrey, and I see him struggling mightily this season.  As for Worley, after bursting on to the scene in 2011, his 2012 was very pedestrian (where he sported a 4.20 era and only won 6 games).  The Twins offense does have a chance to put up some runs, but that all depends on the health of their two former ‘superstars’; Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer.  Josh Willingham should have another nice season at the plate, but if Mauer and Morneau can stay healthy they could make a run at that elusive .500 record (hahaha).  That’s how good I think they will be this season, their ceiling is a .500 record.  When it’s all said and done I do think they improve upon their record from last season, but not by much.  They will be a stellar 70-92.

Last season the Cleveland Indians showed that they can compete in the American League Central.  They held a record of 44-41 at the All-Star break.  Then the Indians went on to have a disastrous 2nd half, going 24-53 to close out the season.  This forced the Indians owner to fire their manager Manny Acta.  Over the offseason, the Indians hired former Red Sox manager Terry Francona.  They believe that the combination of Francona and their new acquisitions this offseason gives them a chance to compete for the division title.  They added former Yankees outfielder Nick Swisher, home-run hitting Mark Reynolds, speedy centerfielder Michael Bourn, and the power/speed threat of Drew Stubbs (if only Stubbs didn’t strike out a million times he’d have the potential to be GREAT).  Between Reynolds and Stubbs their batting average will plummet while their strikeout rate soars through the roof, but they have the potential to be a very good team.  If Ubaldo Jimenez can return to All-Star form, watch out for the Cleveland Indians!  I think that they will be the most improved team from last season but will just miss out on the playoffs.  I believe they will finish with a record of 85-77.

The Kansas City Royals have been a model of inconsistency over the years, and that’s exactly what they were last season.  I do believe that they are heading in the right direction though and might actually surprise some folks this season.  The Royals have a good young team with a mountain of potential.  They also added James Shields, Ervin Santana, and Wade Davis to their starting rotation this offseason.  I believe this will vastly improve this team, and they will finish with a winning record for the first time since 2003.  The Royals have a lineup with a rare combination of speed and power.  Between Lorenzo Cain, Alcides Escobar, Jarrod Dyson, and Alex Gordon the Royals should swipe a lot of bases this season.  They also have a lot of pop in their bats, with Mike Moustakas, Eris Hosmer, and Billy Butler anchoring the lineup.  Expect the Royals to be improved from last year, finishing with a record of 82-80.

Outside of Chris Sale, the Chicago White Sox rotation hovered around .500 in terms of wins and losses last season.  I believe that is what we will see from this team in 2013.  They did not make much noise this past offseason.  The only real addition they made was bringing in Jeff Keppinger to play 3rd base.  He should help with their batting average but not much more.  They do have nice players in their lineup in Paul Konerko, Alexei Ramirez, and Alejandro De Aza, but that won’t be enough to compete in this division.  This will be the most improved division in baseball, and the White Sox will finish in 4th place in the division this season.  I don’t think their pitching is good enough and it will ultimately be their downfall.  I see the White Sox having a disappointing season, finishing with an 80-82 record.

This is the Detroit Tigers division to lose.  With Justin Verlander heading up a rotation that includes Max Scherzer and Doug Fister, the Tigers rotation should continue to mow batters down.  Add that to a lineup that features Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, and I think it’s safe to say that the Tigers will win the American League Central again this season.  The Tigers do have a big question mark this season though, that could throw a big curveball into their plans.  They don’t have a closer right now.  They don’t seem to be interested in re-signing Jose Valverde.  Now, I dislike Valverde more than anyone in the world.  Watching him pitch makes me want to stab myself in the eyes with a pencil.  However, sometimes the scarcity at a position should dictate how you put your team together.  Valverde did implode in the postseason last year, but he is by far the best option at closer for the Detroit Tigers (at least right now).  Come playoff time, are you really going to feel comfortable handing the ball to a rookie in the 9th inning??  I highly doubt it.  I foresee the Tigers holding off the Indians to win the division, but I don’t think they’re going to make it look easy.  Their record should be similar to that of last year at 89-73.  They will narrowly win the American League Central.

2013 American League Central Projected Final Standings:

W   L

Detroit Tigers:                                  89-73

Cleveland Indians:                          85-77

Kansas CIty Royals:                        82-80

Chicago White Sox:                         80-82

Minnesota Twins:                            70-92

Projected American League Central Winner: Detroit Tigers

If you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well.  Also you can follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports.  Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!