November 25, 2013
Prince Fielder traded – Baseball’s offseason saw its first big trade when All-Star Prince Fielder was dealt away from the Detroit Tigers to the Texas Rangers in exchange for Ian Kinsler. The move really is one of those win-win deals. Fielder is an incredible talent as his 25 home runs and 106 runs batted in in 2013 will attest, but he was owed a boatload of money for a lot of seasons. The slugger is still owed approximately $170 million over the next seven years and Detroit really needs some of that money to lock down its pitchers. The Tigers get a solid player back in Kinsler but the real benefit to them is getting out from under all of that money due to Fielder. The Rangers, meanwhile, get a bonafide superstar that can make their top ten offense in 2013 even better next season.
Don’t count out the Pats – For most of the season, the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots have been the class of the AFC. But the Pats have been lurking around in the background and on Sunday, showed they shouldn’t be forgotten. Tom Brady and New England upset Denver in overtime and at 8-3 on the season, are only one game behind the 9-2 Broncos. The Patriots got the game at home, but Brady’s spectacular 344-yard, three-touchdown effort officially put the rest of the NFL on notice.
Charlotte Hornets will get their colors back – The NBA’s Charlotte Bobcats will go back to being the Charlotte Hornets next season, but a name change isn’t the only thing coming. With the team name change, the franchise will go back to their original purple and teal color scheme per ESPN. If that doesn’t conjure up memories of Grandmama, then nothing will.
Crazy African soccer betting – And … I’ll just put this here.
Florida loses to FCS Georgia Southern. In football. – The Florida Gators’ season was already going about as badly as it could. Entering this weekend, they were 4-6 and in serious danger of a sub .500 season. But things got a whole lot worse for the Gators when they lost to FCS team Georgia Southern 26-20 at home. The loss dropped Florida to 4-7 and gave the Gators their sixth straight loss. Hello, Will Muschamp – it’s the hot seat calling.
Red Sox hair trimmings up for auction – Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen some pretty interesting auctions related to sports. A few weeks back, Bill Mazeroski’s game jersey he wore when hitting his historic home run in the 1960 World Series fetched six figures. Last week, a ball boy who was given Michael Jordan’s shoes from his famous flu game decided he’d put those up to the highest bidder. Now the Boston Red Sox are getting in on the action. Several Red Sox players have trimmed their beards after their World Series run and putting them up to benefit a men’s organization. You may question if fans really want hair from players, but so far the auction is already bringing in thousands of dollars.
Derrick Rose injures knee … again – Chicago Bulls star guard Derrick Rose sat out all of last season recovering from an ACL injury in his knee. Rose returned this year but caught another tough break when he injured his other knee last week during a game against the Portland Trailblazers. It’s unknown how long he’ll be out, but word is that Rose could miss the rest of the season. If so, it’s another devastating blow to a team that had hopes of reaching the NBA Finals. The Bulls put up a bit of a fight in the postseason last year without Rose, but realistically, it’s difficult envisioning them competing with the Miami Heat or Indiana Pacers without their best player.
And you get $20,000, and you get $20,000 – Last week a fan at an Oklahoma City Thunder game made a half-court shot at halftime to win $20,000. That’s an incredible feat, but it’s something that seems to happen in Oklahoma City more than anywhere else. The shot was the fifth such one by a fan in 2013.
Johnny Football and Texas A&M fall short against top teams – Texas A&M hasn’t had a bad season per se, but the Aggies have definitely struggled against the better schools on their football schedule. Johnny Manziel and company have played three ranked programs and after this weekend, have lost all three. Texas A&M previously lost to Alabama and Auburn and on Saturday, dropped a game to LSU on the road. Manziel has still been impressive this season, but failed miserably against the Tigers, completing only 16 of his 41 passes and adding two interceptions against only one touchdown. He’s played well in his sophomore year, but winning a second Heisman is looking less and less likely.
April 17, 2013
We may only be a few weeks into the 2013 MLB season, but there’s plenty to talk about. With every team playing around 12 games, enough action has played out to begin to speculate on just how the season may go.
If your favorite team has stumbled out of the gates, don’t be discouraged, there are still 150 games to go.
The players and teams mentioned in this article have not struggled from the get-go. In fact, it’s just the opposite as they are red hot.
The Atlanta Braves are the Hottest Team Right Now
Baseball experts were perplexed in the preseason in regards to just which team would win the National League East. The only team not considered to contend for the divisional crown is the rebuilding Miami Marlins. At this moment, the 12-1 Atlanta Braves are the early favorites. The Washington Nationals won it last season, the Philadelphia Phillies are never to be taken lightly and the New York Mets are considered a Wild Card, but the Braves are the best. This is a playoff race that won’t end until game 162.
The Braves gave their franchise a facelift in the offseason and the gamble is paying off. Among other acquisitions, both B.J. and Justin Upton now roam their outfield. Justin, the younger of the two brothers looks like an early NL MVP candidate. His eight homers currently lead the league.
The Braves look like a team in midseason form and even with injuries to the likes of Freddie Freeman and Brian McCann. A pleasant surprise has been the addition of 26-year-old Evan Gattis to the lineup. His journey to the majors is one for the ages. He only made the club out of spring training due to injuries, but he’s not going anywhere and is in Atlanta to stay.
Gattis is hitting .289 in the early going with four home runs and 10 RBI. The Braves will have a good problem on their hands when Freeman and McCann return to the lineup. Gattis is their X-factor. Every winning team has one. He’s a player to root for all season no matter who your favorite team is.
Now a Member of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Carl Crawford Looks Like His Old Self Again
Crawford now looks like his former self when he played outfield for the Tampa Bay Rays. Right now he’s hitting .392 as the Dodgers lead-off hitter. He looks happy and his team is looking wise to trade for him even when injured.
Most importantly, the Dodgers have positive momentum thanks to new ownership. The club may only be .500 at the moment but its only mid-April. They have an All-Star lineup from top to bottom and Crawford will be the piece that puts them over the top in 2013. When he’s on, he’s electric. He can win a game all by himself with his speed.
Don’t sleep on Crawford, he’s back to being the real deal.
New York Mets Pitcher Matt Harvey is the Early NL Cy Young Favorite
Some New York Mets fans may have cringed when the team traded away R.A. Dickey to the Toronto Blue Jays this offseason. All Dickey did last season is win the NL Cy Young.
Well, the Mets front office looks brilliant right now because young pitcher Matt Harvey looks like he could win the coveted award this season.
The 24-year-old pitcher has won his first three starts and is making history. He became the first pitcher since 1947 to go at least seven innings with three hits or less allowed in his first three starts. The last man to do that was Cleveland Indians Hall of Fame hurler Bob Feller. That’s good company to be in.
Harvey tasted the majors late last season, throwing 59 innings and striking out 70 batters. He hasn’t disappointed thus far in 2013 and Mets fans have to be looking forward to the future with Harvey as their ace.
It won’t be too long before he’ll an undisputed star.
Prince Fielder Looks like he’s having an MVP season in Detroit
Many can argue that boost in average is because he had Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera batting in front of him, but Fielder also had former NL MVP winner Ryan Braun hitting ahead of him as a member of the Milwaukee Brewers.
The Tigers came up empty in the World Series last season and Fielder is making it clear that the team has unfinished business this season. He’s hitting .383 this season with four homers and 19 RBI so far and the Tigers offense is clicking on all cylinders.
Fielder almost looks angry at the plate. Like the baseball is his despised nemesis. Truth be told, anything short of a ring this season in Detroit and 2013 will be considered a failure.
Fielder is out to make that dream come true—he’s on a mission. Albeit early, the AL MVP is his to lose. In doing so, he’ll be the Tigers third consecutive MVP.
September 20, 2012
1967! That’s 45 years ago. Think about how the game has changed since then.
Yastrzemski’s heroic ’67 season may have been much of the reason why the league decided to raise the pitching mound, giving us the unforgettable “Year of the Pitcher” in 1968. The ’68 season gave us the best year by any pitcher in terms of ERA. Bob Gibson of the St. Louis Cardinals took his team to the World Series with a 1.12 earned run average during the season, before being eclipsed by the Tigers in seven games.
The dominance by the pitchers lasted until steroids took over the game sometime in the mid-1980s. Now a clean game, Cabrera is etching his name in the record books every time he steps to the plate. Considering the evolution of the athlete in the past 45 years, Cabrera is arguably having the best season in the history of baseball. As of September 20, he is leading the American League with a .333 average, 130 RBIs and trails Texas Rangers star Josh Hamilton by only a single homer with 41.
Cabrera is the first Tiger to hit 40-plus homers since Cecil Fielder did it in 1991. With a little bit of luck and a lot of natural ability, Cabrera will become the first Tiger to win the Triple Crown since Ty Cobb did it in 1909.
Watching Cabrera at the plate is worth the price of admission alone. The man is simply an artist when it comes to hitting. What he doesn’t get enough credit for is his fielding ability at third base. Before the season started the Tigers made plenty of noise when they signed first baseman Prince Fielder. This meant that Cabrera would move from first to third base. The Tigers were instantly perceived as the worst fielding team in the league, but thanks to both Cabrera and Fielder’s all-around athleticism, the Tigers haven’t been that bad. People wrote-off Cabrera at third, which was their first mistake. He is the most feared man in baseball.
As this season winds down try to catch every at-bat that Cabrera takes because there’s history in the making. Whether you are a fan of the Tigers or not, root for Cabrera these final weeks of the season. In doing so, you’re rooting for history. After all, we may never get to see someone come so close to the Triple Crown again.
January 19, 2012
Martinez batted .330 with 103 RBI in 2011 and most importantly provided some much needed protection in the Tigers’ lineup for slugger Miguel Cabrera. Fans should be concerned for the health of Martinez, but not for the fate of the Tigers.
Detroit has the returning AL CY Young and MVP in Justin Verlander, who is the ace of one of the best pitching staffs in all of baseball. They also have money to spend, and a couple of premier prospects in Jacob Turner and Andrew Oliver.
So where do the Tigers turn to fill the void left by Martinez?
There’s a man named Prince Fielder who cemented himself in Tigers folklore at the age of 12 when he hit a homerun into the upper deck of Tiger Stadium. Fielder, now 27, is the most prized free agent in Major League Baseball at the moment.
Fielder has seven MLB seasons under his belt, averages 100-plus RBI/season and has never faced a major injury. Fielder would split time between first base with Cabrera and in the designated hitter role for the Tigers. Cabrera could even play third base for 20-25 games in 2012. Regardless, with these two juggernauts in the lineup, the Tigers would be the most feared team in all of baseball.
The only thing keeping Fielder from Detroit now that Martinez is injured may be his past. Prince’s father, Cecil Fielder, was a Tigers’ slugger some 20 years ago. It is well known that Prince and his father do not speak, and Prince may not want to wear the same uniform that his father once did.
A move to Detroit could put the past behind Prince Fielder. The city would embrace him with open arms. Detroit is a passionate city that lives and dies with its teams. Most importantly, Detroit wants to win. Fielder doesn’t have to sign a mega-deal with the Tigers, just a two or three year deal worth considerable cash. That way, he can reassess where he wants to be in the future.
Fielder’s best chance to win the World Series in 2012 is with the Detroit Tigers.
March 13, 2009
It just keeps getting better…
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Today’s great names in baseball are all represented and many of them are also available as Real.Big. Fatheads including: Derek Jeter, David Ortiz, Alfonso Soriano, AJ Pierzynski, Albert Pujols, Carlos Beltran, Chase Utley, Chipper Jones, Curtis Granderson, David Wright, Evan Longoria, Joe Mauer, Josh Hamilton, Prince Fielder, Ryan Howard and Vladimir Guerrero.
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