Tuesday, June 30, 2015

I tried but I just don't care

Few people watch as much soccer as I do. During the soccer season I watch: the Premier League, the Championship, the French league, Spanish league, Italian league, Portuguese league and the Russian league. So no one can question my love for the beautiful game. 

But there is one thing that I have had a hard time watching: the Women's World Cup. I tried to watch the final 45 minutes of the United States vs Germany but I found it unwatchable. While the pace of the game was ok the game lacked tackling. At no point in the second half did I see anyone flying in for a Roy Keane like tackle. 

Some might call me sexist for not being into the United States run to the final but honestly I care very little about it, wake me up when club friendlies start. The women's game does very little for me. 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

U.S. Open done the Fox Way

I've held off on passing judgement on Fox's first attempt at covering my favorite major: the U.S. Open. Until now.

Joe Buck is a pain and I've never liked him and during the open my disliked for him grew. During the four rounds, Buck drove me nuts but talking over shots the whole time. Listening to Buck for four days make me yern for the days of Dan Hicks. 

Greg Norman was ok, not great. Norman gave some good insight on Jason Day's issues but beyond that he was not great.

The one thing I did like was the time they gave golf course designers to talk about all for the issues regarding fescue grass and the way it dominates the course. 

For a first major championship, Fox did an ok job but there is a ton of improvement that has to be made next year at Oakmont, my favorite US Open venue.  

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Prospect Plus: Best Class Ever

In honor of this years rookie class Baseball America posted this epic photo on their Instagram. The four hotshots all on their cover. 

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Prospects Plus: My MLB Mock Draft

Doing a MLB Mock Draft is probably the hardest thing in sports to do, but over the last couple of years I've given it a shot and I will again this year. So Here we go: 

1. Diamondbacks: Dansby Swanson,SS, Vanderbilt    
2. Astros: Alex Bregman, SS, LSU
3. Rockies: Dillion Tate, RHP, UCSB
4. Rangers: Brandan Rodgers, SS, California HS
5. Astros: Carson Fulmer, RHP, Vanderbilt
6. Twins: Tyler Jay, RHP, Illinois
7. Red Sox: Daz Cameron, OF, Georgia HS
8. White Sox: Kyle Funkhouser, RHP, Louisville
9. Cubs: Garrett Whitley, OF, New York HS
10. Phillies: Kyle Tucker, OF, Florida HS
11. Reds: Walker Buehler, RHP, Vanderbilt
12. Marlins: Trenton Clark, OF, Texas HS          
13. Rays: Andrew Benintendi, OF, Arkansas
14. Braves: Carnelius Randolph, SS, Georgia HS
15. Brewers: Ian Happ, OF, Cincinnati
16. Yankees: Tyler Stephenson, C, Georgia HS
17. Indians: Nick Plummer, OF, Michigan HS
18. Giants: Alex Young, LHP, TCU
19. Pirates: Mike Nikorak, RHP, Pennsylvania HS
20. Athletics: James Kapriellian, RHP, UCLA
21. Royals: Brady Aiken, LHP, IMG
22. Tigers: Ashe Russell, RHP, Indianapolis HS
23. Cardinals: Jon Harris, RHP, Missouri State
24. Dodgers: Kolby Allard, LHP, California HS
25. Orioles: Beau Burrows, RHP, Texas HS
26. Angels: Phil Bickford, RHP, JC of Southern Nevada
27. Rockies: Nathan Kirby, LHP, Virginia      
28. Braves: Dakota Chalmers, RHP, Georgia HS
29. Blue Jays: Michael Matuella, RHP, Duke
30. Yankees: Donny Everett, RHP, Tennessee HS
31. Giants: DJ Stewart, OF, Florida State
32. Pirates: Kevin Newman, SS, Arizona
33. Royals: Cody Ponce, RHP, Cal Poly Pomona
34. Tigers: Jacob Nix, RHP, IMG
35. Dodgers: Chris Shaw, OF/1b, Boston College
36. Orioles: Ke'Bryan Hayes, 3b, Texas HS
37. Astros: Donnie Dewees, OF, North Florida
38. Rockies: Justin Hooper, LHP, De La Salle HS
39. Cardinals: Kyle Holder, SS, San Diego
40. Brewers: David Hill, RHP, San Diego
41. Padres: Juan Hillman, LHP, Canada HS
42. Indians: Scott Kingery, 2B, Arizona

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Monday, June 01, 2015

Prospects Plus: UCSB Dillion Tate

Name: Dillon Tate
Position: pitcher
Team: UCSB
Ranking: Fifth overall prospect in the 2015 MLB Draft Class
Friday vs San Diego State: 8 innings, 6 hits, 4 runs, 4 earned runs, and 11 strikeouts. 

Positives: He has really good stuff. The late action on his slider was amazing. He settled down after struggling in the first inning.  Noting Tate's projectable frame and easy arm action when he was working in the upper 80s as a high school senior in 2012, scouts figured he could make a big velocity jump after moving on to UC Santa Barbara. He pitched just three innings as a freshman before taking that huge step forward in 2014, putting him in position to become the first Gaucho ever drafted in the top two rounds. His stock took another leap in 2015 as Santa Barbara's ace, becoming one of the best college arms in the Draft class.

Negatives: Looked rattled during the first inning, had a wild pitch. If I was a MLB executive his delivery would really worry me. He has a reliever delivery for me. 

Monday, May 25, 2015

Getting sick of John Tillman

A couple of years ago, the university of Maryland hired John Tillman to turn around their lacrosse program. After a couple of years in starting to think that Tillman is part of the reasons why the Terps fail to win on the games biggest stage. Tillman's slow it down offensive game doomed them against Denver in the National Title game.

During the game yesterday, Tillman's offense looked out of step. The hold the ball for a 45 seconds game made the Terps look terrible on offense. There where several different chances that the Terps could have gotten out and run but instead they pulled the ball out and ran lack luster offensive sets. This is a team that has Matt Rambo in attack and they couldn't find a way to get him a good look. 

I'm not saying Tillman needs to go, but a chance in offensive style is needed. If not it could another four decades until Maryland wins the title. 

Professional Tailgating: lacrosse goes west

The NCAA Lacrosse championships have been on Philly before and I decided to not to go but this year that changed. My son and I headed up and loved it and saw Denver become the first team west of the Mississippi to win the National Title. 

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Prospects Plus: North Carolina's J.B. Bukauskas

Name: J.B. Bukauskas
Team: North Carolina 
Position: Pitcher
Friday vs Clemson: 5 + innings, 5 hits, 2 earned runs, no walks,  7 strikeouts.

Positives: During the 2014 MLB Draft, Bukauskas was one of my favorite players. He had a live arm and was going to be a top round draft pick. But instead of heading to the draft out of high school, JB told teams not to draft him so he could head to North Carolina. During the game on Friday afternoon, Bukauskas showed a great fastball as well as a wipe out change up. During the game he topped out at 95 mph, his change, which showed great movement was around 84 mph. Looked extremely polished for a young college pitcher. 

Negative: He's got a reliever's delivery with a lot of effort and inconsistent command; small frame inhibits ability to drive with the leg, putting more stress on the arm, and lack of finish could cause problems in the future. Big effort in the delivery will always limit the command upside, but there are flashes that he can at least be average placing the ball where he needs to against advanced hitters.