Tag Archive | "world series"

Bring Out Your Dead

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Bring Out Your Dead

Posted on 24 October 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

Inspired by the scene in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” where the body cart is being pushed through the city during the plague as the mortician cries “Bring Out Your Dead”. As one man ambitiously tries to deliver a not quite dead elderly man to the cart hilarity ensues. Here’s a look at who’s being (or has been) written off for dead in the sports world, and what the final prognosis might be.

“I’m Not Dead Yet” – Despite reports to the contrary these guys are not dead yet, but may have one foot in the proverbial grave and another on a banana peel.

 

Cam Newton – Superman has become the Super-Sulker but he’s not dead yet, not by a long shot. Still there are plenty of reasons to be concerned. Newton’s post-loss body language has been unbearable. We can all appreciate that the kid wants to win, but he’ll have to do some growing up before he can become a leader of men. Cam took everyone (including himself) to task in the wake of the Panthers most recent defeat, but mostly seemed to point fingers at his offensive coordinator. Newton is looking for a game plan that authors blowouts but will sooner or later have to learn that life in the NFL doesn’t work that way. In 3 of his 5 losses this season, Cam has had the ball in his hands with a chance to win the game in the final 5 minutes. If he intends to be the star he’s being cast as, he’ll need to get comfortable in those situations. It’d also help if Newton stopped shaking off teammates’ efforts to celebrate TDs with him while clearing out space to do his ridiculous Superman dance.

 

 

Cam Cameron – Sticking with Cams, reports of the demise of Cam Cameron might be a byproduct of Ravens fans wishes more than anything else. In the wake of the Ravens most recent disappointment against the Houston Texans however, another long and introspective look at this offense might be long overdue. Cameron was “under fire” by owner Steve Bisciotti last season and managed to survive. There’s no reason to believe the Ravens will make a change before seasons end, but in the event that it doesn’t end in the Super Bowl, this season could very likely be Cameron’s last.

 

Maurice Jones-Drew – Remember MJD calling out Jay Cutler a couple of seasons ago for surrendering during the playoffs due to an MCL injury that didn’t look that serious on TV and didn’t require surgery. Last week in a game the Jaguars lost in overtime to a less than spectacular Oakland Raiders squad, MJD watched from the sidelines while nursing a foot injury that didn’t look that serious on TV and that apparently won’t require surgery. This on the heels of his extended and controversial holdout from training camp while trying to earn a new contract or force a trade won’t buy Jones-Drew much empathy as he watches from the sidelines for the next couple of weeks at least.

 

Lance Armstrong – Maybe the Lance Armstrong fiasco will give us a long overdue chance to examine ourselves. He lorded over a sport that was rampant with doping and drug use, and while he adamantly proclaimed being above it throughout his once storied and undeniably dominant career. Now having given up the fight and having been stripped of all of his career accolades Armstrong also finds that those who rode his coattails to success and fortune aren’t set to stand by him in the hard times. It’s still impossible to ignore all of the good that Armstrong has done in his career, and it seems only a matter of time before he’ll inevitably bounce back in the court of public opinion…but it doesn’t look like it’ll be terribly easy, or any time soon for that matter.

 

Dirk Nowitzki – Just as the world was ready to close the book on the legacy of Dirk Nowitzki he surprised everyone and cemented that legacy by winning an NBA championship. He backed it up however by showing up for a lockout shortened NBA season the following year out of shape, and now looks ready to miss at least the first few weeks of this season as he recovers from ankle surgery. It may now be safe to close the book on Nowitzki’s NBA legacy. It appears he got that title just in the nick of time.

 

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Bovada gives O’s longest odds of playoff teams to win World Series

Posted on 04 October 2012 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV).

 

NFL Odds

Odds to win the 2013 Super Bowl XLVII (Teams in blue have shorter odds, teams in red have longer odds, teams in black stayed the same)         

                                                Last Week        Current

Houston Texans                         5/1                    9/2

San Francisco 49ers                  6/1                    11/2

Atlanta Falcons                         8/1                    7/1

New England Patriots                 17/2                  7/1

Baltimore Ravens                       9/1                    17/2

Green Bay Packers                    17/2                  9/1

Chicago Bears                           22/1                  15/1

Denver Broncos                         20/1                  20/1

Philadelphia Eagles                    22/1                  20/1

San Diego Chargers                   25/1                  20/1

New York Giants                        18/1                  22/1

Arizona Cardinals                       28/1                  25/1

Pittsburgh Steelers                    20/1                  25/1

Dallas Cowboys                         25/1                  35/1

Cincinnati Bengals                     50/1                  50/1

Minnesota Vikings                     75/1                  50/1

Seattle Seahawks                      30/1                  66/1

Washington Redskins                100/1                75/1

New York Jets                           35/1                  100/1

Buffalo Bills                               50/1                  100/1

Detroit Lions                              50/1                  100/1

New Orleans Saints                   66/1                  100/1

Carolina Panthers                      100/1                150/1

Tampa Bay Buccaneers             150/1                200/1

Indianapolis Colts                       200/1                200/1

St. Louis Rams                          300/1                200/1

Kansas City Chiefs                    100/1                250/1

Oakland Raiders                        100/1                250/1

Tennessee Titans                       150/1                300/1

Miami Dolphins                          200/1                300/1

Jacksonville Jaguars                   250/1                500/1

Cleveland Browns                       750/1                1000/1

 

Divisional Odds

Odds to Win the 2013 AFC East Division         

New England Patriots                 1/5

Buffalo Bills                               7/1

New York Jets                           9/1

Miami Dolphins                          18/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 AFC North Division       

Baltimore Ravens                       4/7

Pittsburgh Steelers                    3/1

Cincinnati Bengals                     7/2

Cleveland Browns                       200/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 NFC East Division         

Philadelphia Eagles                    6/5

New York Giants                        9/4

Dallas Cowboys                         3/1

Washington Redskins                17/2

 

Odds to Win the 2013 NFC North Division       

Green Bay Packers                    2/3

Chicago Bears                           7/4

Minnesota Vikings                     7/1

Detroit Lions                              18/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 NFC South Division       

Atlanta Falcons                         1/20

New Orleans Saints                   15/1

Carolina Panthers                      15/1

Tampa Bay Buccaneers             20/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 AFC West Division        

San Diego Chargers                   1/1

Denver Broncos                         6/5

Kansas City Chiefs                    10/1

Oakland Raiders                        12/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 NFC West Division        

San Francisco 49ers                  4/9

Arizona Cardinals                       11/4

Seattle Seahawks                      15/2

St. Louis Rams                          18/1

 

Miscellaneous Props

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Who will win the 2012 NFL Regular Season MVP?        

Matt Ryan (ATL) QB                               9/2

Aaron Rodgers (GB) QB                         5/1

Tom Brady (NE) QB                               5/1

Peyton Manning (DEN) QB                     7/1

Eli Manning (NYG) QB                           10/1

Jay Cutler (CHI) QB                                15/1

Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) QB                   18/1

Arian Foster (HOU) RB                           20/1

Drew Brees (NO) QB                              20/1

Joe Flacco (BAL) QB                             20/1

LeSean McCoy (PHI) RB                        20/1

Matt Schaub (HOU) QB                          20/1

Michael Vick (PHI) QB                           25/1

Marshawn Lynch (SEA) RB                    30/1

Philip Rivers (SD) QB                             35/1

Christian Ponder (MIN) QB                      40/1

Alex Smith (SF) QB                               40/1

Kevin Kolb (ARI) QB                               40/1

A.J. Green (CIN) WR                              50/1

Jamaal Charles (KC) RB                         50/1

Robert Griffin III (WSH) QB                      50/1

Tony Romo (DAL) QB                             50/1

Cam Newton (CAR) QB                          100/1

Tim Tebow (NYJ) QB                              250/1

 

Team Props

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – New Orleans Saints – Regular Season Wins       

Over/Under                    6

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Who will lose first?        

Arizona Cardinals                       10/13

Atlanta Falcons                         2/1

Houston Texans                         3/1

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – How many Special Team TD’s will the Detroit Lions give up from Week 5-17 in the 2012 NFL Regular Season?                    

Over                              1½ (+110)

Under                            1½  (-140)

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – How many Offensive Yards will the New York Jets have Week 5?

Over/Under                    320½

 

Player Props

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Will Drew Brees Have a TD Pass in all 16 games in the 2012 Regular Season?            

Yes                  +150    

No                    -200    

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Will Drew Brees throw a TD Pass in more than 56 consecutive games breaking Joe Dimaggio’s hit streak record?            

Yes                  +110    

No                    -150    

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Who will have more Passing Yards Week 5?                 

Tom Brady (NE) QB                   -150    

Peyton Manning (DEN) QB         +120    

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Who will have more TD Passes Week 5?                       

Tom Brady (NE) QB                   -130     

Peyton Manning (DEN) QB         EVEN  

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Who will have more Interceptions Week 5?                  

Tom Brady (NE) QB                   -225    

Peyton Manning (DEN) QB         +185

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Will Aaron Rodgers be the most sacked QB in the 2012 Regular Season?                    

Yes                  +250    

No                    -400    

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Will Mark Sanchez be benched in the game?               

Yes                  EVEN  

No                    -140     

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – How many times will Mark Sanchez be sacked Week 5?          

Over                              3 (-130)

Under                            3 (EVEN)

 

WEEK 5 SPECIALS – Rashard Mendenhall – Total Rushing Yards Week 5?                 

Over/Under                    60½

 

 

College Football Odds

SPECIALS – Who will be drafted higher in the 2013 NFL Draft?     

Geno Smith                   -140

Matt Barkley                  EVEN

 

SPECIALS – Will Geno Smith throw an Interception vs. Texas?        

Yes                               -150     (2/3)     

No                                +110     (11/10)

 

SPECIALS – What will Geno Smith have more of vs. Texas?          

TD Passes                    +140     (7/5)

Incompletions                 -175     (4/7)

 

 

MLB Odds

Odds to win the 2012 World Series

Cincinnati Reds                         5/1

New York Yankees                    5/1

Washington Nationals                5/1

Detroit Tigers                             6/1

Texas Rangers                          7/1

Oakland Athletics                      15/2

San Francisco Giants                 15/2

Atlanta Braves                           12/1

Baltimore Orioles                       15/1

St. Louis Cardinals                     15/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 AL Pennant       

New York Yankees                    9/4

Detroit Tigers                             11/4

Texas Rangers                          13/4

Oakland Athletics                      7/2

Baltimore Orioles                       7/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 NL Pennant       

Cincinnati Reds                         2/1

Washington Nationals                9/4

San Francisco Giants                 3/1

Atlanta Braves                           13/2

St. Louis Cardinals                     7/1

 

Wild Card Matchups (Note: No lines have been set yet in AL Wildcard Game as the Orioles haven’t announced their pitcher yet)

St. Louis Cardinals      +145

Atlanta Braves              -165

Total                            6.5

           

Who will record more strikeouts?

Kyle Lohse (R)               +240     (12/5)

Kris Medlen (R)               -300    (1/3)   

 

Total Strikeouts – Kyle Lohse (R)

Over/Under                    4½

 

Total Strikeouts – Kris Medlen (R)           

Over/Under                    6

 

Total Hits, Runs and RBI’s – Jason Heyward (ATL)           

Over/Under                    2

 

Total Hits, Runs and RBI’s – Chipper Jones (ATL) 

Over/Under                    2

 

Will Jason Heyward (ATL) hit a home run?          

Yes                  +400     (4/1)

No                     -600     (1/5)

 

Will Chipper Jones (ATL) hit a home run?

Yes                  +425     (17/4)

No                     -625     (4/25)

 

Will Brian McCann (ATL) hit a home run?

Yes                  +450     (9/2)

No                     -650     (2/13)

 

Will Carlos Beltran (STL) hit a home run?

Yes                  +350     (7/2)

No                     -500     (1/5)

 

Will Matt Holliday (STL) hit a home run? 

Yes                  +400     (4/1)

No                     -600     (1/6)

 

Will Allen Craig (STL) hit a home run?     

Yes                  +375     (15/4)

No                     -550     (11/2)

 

 

NHL Lockout Odds

Will Replacement Players be used at any point in the 2012-2013 NHL Season?

Yes                  15/1

 

Will the NHL cancel the 2012-13 Winter Classic?

Yes                  1/1

No                    4/7

 

Will the NHL Cancel the 2012 NHL Thanksgiving Showdown on NBC?

Yes                  4/7

No                    1/1

 

Will Pat LaFontaine be part of a group that buys the New York Islanders before the 2013-2014 Season?

Yes                  3/1

No                    1/5

 

Will the Edmonton Oilers and the city of Edmonton come to an agreement for a new arena in 2012?

Yes                  3/2

No                    1/2

 

Will the Edmonton Oilers move to the city of Seattle before the 2013-2014 Season?

Yes                  10/1

 

Will a player who played in the NHL last Season lead the KHL in Scoring?

Yes                  3/2

No                    1/2

 

Will a player who played in the NHL last Season lead the AHL in Scoring?

Yes                  2/1

No                    1/3

 

Will NHL Players Play at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi Russia?

Yes                  1/3

No                    2/1

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Bovada gives Orioles updated 18/1 odds to win World Series

Posted on 14 September 2012 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV).

 

Odds to win the 2012 World Series

Texas Rangers                          9/2

Cincinnati Reds                         13/2

Washington Nationals                7/1

New York Yankees                    7/1

San Francisco Giants                 9/1

Atlanta Braves                           14/1

Detroit Tigers                             14/1

Los Angeles Angels                   15/1

Oakland Athletics                      16/1

Chicago White Sox                    16/1

Baltimore Orioles                       18/1

Tampa Bay Rays                       18/1

Los Angeles Dodgers                 20/1

Philadelphia Phillies                   20/1

St. Louis Cardinals                     22/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    40/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      66/1

Arizona Diamondbacks               90/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 AL Pennant

Texas Rangers                          9/4      

New York Yankees                    7/2

Detroit Tigers                             13/2

Chicago White Sox                    15/2

Los Angeles Angels                   15/2

Oakland Athletics                      8/1

Baltimore Orioles                       17/2

Tampa Bay Rays                       17/2

 

Odds to win the 2012 NL Pennant

Cincinnati Reds                         9/4

Washington Nationals                11/4

San Francisco Giants                 9/2

Atlanta Braves                           15/2

St. Louis Cardinals                     10/1

Los Angeles Dodgers                 10/1

Philadelphia Phillies                   12/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    25/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      30/1

Arizona Diamondbacks               60/1

 

Playoff Chances

MLB Special – Will the Baltimore Orioles make the playoffs in 2012?         

Yes                  -110

No                    -110

 

MLB Special – Will the Chicago White Sox make the playoffs in 2012?      

Yes                   -150     (2/3)

No                    +120     (6/5)

 

MLB Special – Will the Detroit Tigers make the playoffs in 2012?   

Yes                  +110     (11/10)

No                     -150     (2/3)

 

MLB Special – Will the Los Angeles Angels make the playoffs in 2012?     

Yes                  +250     (5/2)

No                     -325     (4/13)

 

MLB Special – Will the Los Angeles Dodgers make the playoffs in 2012?   

Yes                  +400     (4/1)

No                     -600     (1/6)

 

MLB Special – Will the Milwaukee Brewers make the playoffs in 2012?      

Yes                  +600     (6/1)

No                    -1000    (1/10)

 

MLB Special – Will the New York Yankees make the playoffs in 2012?      

Yes                   -800     (1/8)

No                    +500     (5/1)

 

MLB Special – Will the Oakland A’s make the playoffs in 2012?    

Yes                   -800     (1/8)

No                    +500     (5/1)

 

MLB Special – Will the Philadelphia Phillies make the playoffs in 2012?     

Yes                  +350     (7/2)

No                     -500     (1/5)

 

MLB Special – Will the St. Louis Cardinals make the playoffs in 2012?      

Yes                   -150     (2/3)

No                    +120     (6/5)

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red sox o’s

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Forget the Home Field Advantage: An AL Team Will Win the World Series

Posted on 11 July 2012 by Big Chee

Wretched. Sucky. Lopsided. These are just some of the adjectives I stumbled upon on Twitter this morning that described last night’s All Star Game, an 8-0 blowout victory for the National League. Right out of the gate, Justin Verlander, arguably the best pitcher in the American League, surrendered 5 runs to give the National League a comfortable lead. From there, the American League had no answer for Cain, Gonzalez, Strasburg, Kershaw, Dickey, Hamels (you get the picture), and Melky Cabrera’s two run homer turned the game from a solid lead to a drubbing.

Speaking of Twitter, baseball fans on social media seem to be crying foul over the home field advantage the NL will earn once again in the World Series. I was not one of them, and I still believe that there is nothing wrong with adding a little competitive spirit to the Mid-Summer classic, I explained in my last blog on WNST.net.

However, in this 2012 season, let’s not spend too much time on this argument, because, quite frankly, it does not matter. This year, the American League’s individual teams are far superior to the National League, and it’s not even close. That can be evidenced by the fact that the American League went 142-110 (.563 win %) over the National League in interleague play this year, and the AL team with the best record (NY Yankees) swept the team in the NL with the best record (Washington Nationals.) Don’t get it twisted, I am well aware that the Texas Rangers have been victims of the American League losing two years in a row in the ASG, and if the Rangers had been home Game 7 last year, the results very well could have been different. However, one exhibition game in July cannot change the fact that there are five teams in the American League that are better than all in the National League,  even if it was a beat down. Here are the five teams that would beat the National League pennant winner in 2012, even if the game is held in the Nation’s Capital.

1.)       The New York Yankees

The Yankees are defying the post steroid era notion that achieving greatness is all about pitching. The 7yr/$161 Million Dollar Ace CC Sabathia has been solid, but his 3.45 ERA is far from spectacular. Ivan Nova might lead the staff with 10 wins, but his 3.92 ERA is even higher than Sabathia’s. Phil Hughes has been up and down all season, Andy Pettite is on the 60 Day DL and Hiroki Kuroda is simply an innings eater. Not to mention Michael Pineda’s season ending injury before the season even started, as well as the legend Mariano Rivera’s freak accident while shagging fly balls that put the rest of his career in jeopardy. This season could have been lost for the Yankees. However, they have the best winning percentage in baseball at the break, leading the Orioles by 7 games in the AL East.

In post steroid era ball where players in their 30s are supposed to be tailing off and fading into the sunset, the Yankee veterans only continue to shine. They lead the majors with 134 home runs as a team.  Derek Jeter at 38 years old is tied for 1st in hits in the American League with Miguel Cabrera. Nick Swisher is on pace for over 100 RBIs. Eric Chavez has shown flashes of the player he was in his prime in Oakland, his versatility and personality has been great for the clubhouse. Andruw Jones has been punishing left handed pitchers as of late. And let’s not forget that Robinson Cano and Mark Texiera’s important defensive ability. All Star Curtis Granderson continues to be worth the investment when they snatched him from Detroit before last season, he has 24 HRs at the break. This lineup is loaded 1-9 and even superb National League starters like Clayton Kershaw and Steven Strasburg cannot find relief in this lineup.

2.)       Texas Rangers

You may be wondering: How can the Texas Rangers be on this list when they have lost the World Series the past two years in a row without the home field advantage? Or you may be curious how the Rangers will fare after two integral pieces of their 2011 postseason out of the conversation this year. I’m talking their #1 last year, CJ Wilson, who left for Los Angeles and their preseason #2 starter Derek Holland who has been less than mediocre in 2012, spotting a 5.05 ERA at the break.

Production at the plate has been key for another successful season thus far in Arlington for the Texas Rangers, who sport the 2nd best record in baseball at 52-34, leading the Angels by 4 games in the West. You can make an argument that despite his recent cool-off from his historic April, Josh Hamilton had a MVP 1st half, batting .308, leading baseball in both HRs (27) and RBIs (75). Ian Kinsler leads the majors with 63 runs scored. Fellow All-Stars Elvis Andrus, Adrian Beltre and Mike Napoli are key contributors to the Rangers leading the majors in team average (.280), runs (443), hits (844) and RBIs (430).

The pitching staff inevitably will have to play a big part in this team’s success just like 2011, and there are new names that will do so. Despite a somewhat slow start by Yu Darvish, the $100 million man from Japan made the All-Star Team and continues to improve and adjust to the American game. Fellow All-Star Matt Harrison has been even better with an 11-4 record and 3.10 ERA. Roy Oswalt adds a veteran presence, even if he has been up and down. If the lineup just continues business as usual in dominating opposing pitching staffs, this should lessen the pressure of this staff to carry them to a World Series victory.

3.)       Los Angeles Angels

The Angels seem to get lost in the conversation for World Series favorites at the All-Star break, due to the fact that if the season ended today, they would face the Baltimore Orioles in a one game playoff for the wildcard draw in the postseason. They are 48-38, four games back of Texas in the AL West, probably short of the lofty expectations this team faced to start the 2012 season. The Angels made the biggest splash at MLB’s Winter Meetings, signing preseason favorite AL MVP Albert Pujols to a 10 year/$254 million dollar deal. In addition, they snatched up former Texas Ranger and Cy Young contender CJ Wilson to form a 1-2 punch with Jered Weaver that could be the best in the game.  While the Angels are getting slowly but surely getting back on track, their start to 2012 was not exactly a smooth ride. Pujols went 92 at-bats in the month of April without hitting a home run. Weaver & Wilson have been rock solid, middle of the rotation guys Dan Haren and Ervin Santana have been extremely disappointing with 4.86 and 5.75 ERAs, respectively.

I have not even mentioned Mike Trout, the best position player in the American League not named Josh Hamilton. The All-Star Game last night gave Trout national exposure. The baby faced 20 year old not only leads the American League in batting average at .341, but he gets himself in position to score more than anyone in the AL as well with 26 steals at the break. Mark Trumbo will continue his power surge and build off his 22 home runs. Torii Hunter is continuing to prove how valuable of a veteran he is on this roster in the #2 spot in the lineup as well as his defensive ability in the outfield. Manager Mike Scoscia has the experience and savvy to keep this team rolling in the 2nd half and in the playoffs. It would be shocking if the AL West does not produce two of the four teams in the Final 4 of the American League playoffs.

4.)       Detroit Tigers

Fittingly, the Tigers are mentioned right after the Angels, another team that failed to live up to expectations after they partook in an active offseason. Prince Fielder signed with Detroit for 9 years, $214 million making him the second biggest FA signing behind Pujols.  Ace Justin Verlander was the starter in the American League All Star Game. Yet this team is only 44-42 at the break and in 3rd place in the worst division in the American League, the Central.

Again, there is too much talent on this team for this to continue. Let’s start with the pitching staff. Don’t overthink Verlander’s meltdown last night in the first inning. He’s in contention for another Cy Young, as he leads the league with strikeouts at 128 and is 4th in the majors with a 2.58 ERA. Max Scherzer, 8-5, has been much improved and rookie Drew Smyly has hit the All Star break in stride, winning his last two starts and holding a 4-3 record into the break.

At the plate, Miguel Cabrera is certainly in the running along with Hamilton and Trout for AL MVP. He is hitting .324 and is tied in first with Jeter for hits with 111 , is 2nd in the AL behind Hamilton with 71 RBIs Right below the young phenom in batting average is Austin Jackson of Detroit, hitting .332. Prince Fielder has not been atop the league as far as statistics go, but his presence at the plate will be a huge factor in determining where the Tigers go in the 2nd half.

Finally, let’s not also forget their manager Jim Leyland. This guy has been in the game long enough and had plenty of success throughout his entire career to not let this slow start get his guys unraveled. His cool demeanor will allow for his players to bring it all together making a run to the World Series in 2012.

5.)       Chicago White Sox

However, the AL Central leading Chicago White Sox are my choice for the 5th team that would win the World Series against an NL team because they are better than any of the NL teams that will be in the World Series. Now hear me out on this one:

A good portion of this article has been in regards to the strength of the lineups of each of these teams. When you take a look at the White Sox, their lineup is certainly potent enough to compete at the next level. And just like the Yankees, the veterans are getting it done on the South Side. Let’s start with the resurgent Adam Dunn. Whatever it was that Dunn did in the offseason to get this mojo back after his disastrous 2011 campaign, it has turned him into a comeback player of the year candidate. He leads the American League in walks and is 2nd in HR with 25. How about Alex Rios? He is third in the AL in hits for the first place White Sox. Still think Team Captain Paul Konerko is not a Hall of Famer? He just made is 6th All Star Game and is 3rd in the AL in average at .329. Finally, if you’ve never heard of Alejando De Aza, it’s ok. But get to know him now: he’s 5th in the AL in runs scored and chipped in 15 SBs.

Speaking of guys one might not ever heard of, let’s move onto the pitching staff and ace Chris Sale. Sale has been so spectacular this season that he could have easily been selected to start last night’s All Star Game and who knows? Maybe it would have been worth watching All this 23 year old has done is spot a 2.19 ERA, .95 WHIP (both 2nd in the AL) along with 10 wins. Let’s not forget another member of the White Sox who could be mentioned as Comeback Player of the Year in Jake Peavy. He leads the team with 108 K’s, and just made his 3rd All Star appearance. Also, keep an eye on Jose Quintana in the 2nd half. In 8 starts he is 4-1 with a 2.04 ERA.

Even if you are just a casual baseball fan, you probably could have guessed the first four teams on this list.  As far as the fifth position, there are plenty of teams that can receive consideration. The Tampa Bay Rays starting rotation features All Star David Price which led the MLB last year in ERA. The Boston Red Sox started 2012 slow, but are slowly creeping into the Wild Card conversation and getting healthy. Let’s not forget about the great things that the Baltimore Orioles and Cleveland Indians have done this year! If those two teams acquire some big name pitching at the deadline, they could certainly be considered for a shot at the World Series.

So there you have it. There are the five teams that will beat the Dodgers, Nationals, Giants, Braves, Pirates or whoever the National League crowns champions and earns home field advantage in the World Series. Let the debate begin…

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Orioles still face long odds to win AL East

Posted on 10 July 2012 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV).

Odds to win the 2012 World Series      

New York Yankees                    9/2

Texas Rangers                          5/1

San Francisco Giants                11/1

Washington Nationals                11/1

Los Angeles Angels                  11/1

Detroit Tigers                            14/1

Cincinnati Reds                         14/1

Los Angeles Dodgers                16/1

Atlanta Braves                           16/1

Chicago White Sox                    18/1

Tampa Bay Rays                       18/1

St. Louis Cardinals                    20/1

Boston Red Sox                       22/1

Philadelphia Phillies                   30/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      30/1

Toronto Blue Jays                     35/1

Miami Marlins                            35/1

Arizona Diamondbacks              35/1

New York Mets                          40/1

Cleveland Indians                      45/1

Baltimore Orioles                       50/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    60/1

Oakland Athletics                      100/1

Kansas City Royals                   150/1

Colorado Rockies                     300/1

Minnesota Twins                        300/1

Chicago Cubs                           500/1

Houston Astros                         500/1

San Diego Padres                     500/1

Seattle Mariners                        500/1

Odds to win the 2012 AL Pennant        

New York Yankees                    5/2

Texas Rangers                          5/2

Los Angeles Angels                  6/1

Detroit Tigers                            15/2

Chicago White Sox                    10/1

Tampa Bay Rays                       10/1

Boston Red Sox                       11/1

Toronto Blue Jays                     18/1

Cleveland Indians                      20/1

Baltimore Orioles                       22/1

Oakland Athletics                      50/1

Kansas City Royals                   80/1

Minnesota Twins                        150/1

Seattle Mariners                        250/1

Odds to win the 2012 NL Pennant        

Washington Nationals                9/2

San Francisco Giants                9/2

Cincinnati Reds                         11/2

Los Angeles Dodgers                7/1

Atlanta Braves                           7/1

St. Louis Cardinals                    8/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      12/1

Arizona Diamondbacks              14/1

Philadelphia Phillies                   14/1

Miami Marlins                            16/1

New York Mets                          16/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    30/1

Colorado Rockies                     150/1

Houston Astros                         150/1

Chicago Cubs                           200/1

San Diego Padres                     200/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 AL East

New York Yankees                    1/3

Tampa Bay Rays                       7/1

Boston Red Sox                       15/2

Baltimore Orioles                       10/1

Toronto Blue Jays                     10/1

Odds to win the 2012 AL Central         

Chicago White Sox                    6/5

Detroit Tigers                            6/5

Cleveland Indians                      7/2

 

Odds to win the 2012 AL West 

Texas Rangers                          1/ 4

Los Angeles Angels                  3/1

Odds to win the 2012 NL East

Washington Nationals                4/5

Atlanta Braves                           9/4

New York Mets                          15/2

Miami Marlins                            12/1

Philadelphia Phillies                   12/1

Odds to win the 2012 NL Central         

Cincinnati Reds                         1/1

St. Louis Cardinals                    2/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      5/2

Milwaukee Brewers                    16/1

Odds to win the 2012 NL West 

San Francisco Giants                10/11

Los Angeles Dodgers                8/5

Arizona Diamondbacks              4/1

AL MVP – Odds to Win

Mike Trout (LAA)                       2/1

Robinson Cano (NYY)               5/2

Josh Hamilton (TEX)                  4/1

Miguel Cabrera (DET)                6/1

Jose Bautista (TOR)                  9/1

Mark Trumbo (LAA)                   14/1

David Ortiz (BOS)                      15/1

Prince Fielder (DET)                  15/1

Adrian Beltre (TEX)                    18/1

NL MVP – Odds to Win

Andrew McCutchen (PIT)            4/1

David Wright (NYM)                   9/2

Joey Votto (CIN)                       9/2

Ryan Braun (MIL)                       13/2

Carlos Beltran (STL)                   13/2

Matt Kemp (LAD)                      13/2

R.A. Dickey (NYM)                    7/1

Carlos Gonzalez (COL)               10/1

Melky Cabrera (SF)                    15/1

Bryce Harper (WAS)                  18/1

AL Cy Young – Odds to Win    

Jered Weaver (LAA)                   5/2

Justin Verlander (DET)               3/1

Chris Sale (CWS)                       3/1

David Price (TB)                        5/1

C.C. Sabathia (NYY)                  11/2

C.J. Wilson (LAA)                      10/1

Matt Harrison (TEX)                   12/1

Fernando Rodney (TB)               20/1

Yu Darvish (TEX)                       20/1

Jake Peavy (CWS)                    20/1

NL Cy Young – Odds to Win    

R.A. Dickey (NYM)                    13/10

Johnny Cueto (CIN)                   4/1

Gio Gonzalez (WAS)                  11/2

James McDonald (PIT)              11/2

Matt Cain (SF)                           11/2

Stephen Strasburg (WAS)          15/2

Cole Hamels (PHI)                     10/1

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Chapter 12: A Dundalk guy becomes a San Diego dude

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Chapter 12: A Dundalk guy becomes a San Diego dude

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Nestor Aparicio

(Originally published as a prelude the “Free The Birds” walkout in Sept. 2006, this is Part 12 of a 19 Chapter Series on How baseball and the Orioles berthed WNST.net. We’re planning some civic action on Thursday, April 5th. We hope you’ll join us an participate.)

There’s nothing like the first time you do anything in life, and that goes without saying.

That 1993 World Series experience in the streets of Toronto was super cool and hard to compare with anything that would follow.

So I suppose I could bore you with war stories about my night in the Atlanta Braves clubhouse when Ryan Klesko soaked me with champagne in the celebration, or I could tell you how cold it was in Cleveland before Game 4 of the World Series in 1995.
I could tell you that I was in the upper deck of Yankee Stadium when Wade Boggs rode the white horse and the Yankees won their first championship in 18 years on that night in 1996.

In 1997 the hangover from the Tony Fernandez made me not want to go to the World Series, but I went to Cleveland for Games 3, 4 and 5. The Series went 7 games. I only went to the middle three games because the Ravens existed at that point and I had football duty on the weekends in October.

It was during this time in my life that I discovered that seeing a city win a World Series and being in the middle of it was always a lot of fun, even in New York. I also found out during the falls and ACLS of 1996 and 1997, coming to close to winning a World Series really sucks.

And it kinda makes you not even wanna go, or even watch, the World Series at all.

For you other purple folks, imagine how hard it would be to watch the Super Bowl this February in Miami if the Ravens lost the AFC Championship Game in Baltimore to the Steelers, 20-19, on a 56-yard field goal as time expires.

Would you really want to watch the Steelers play the Redskins two weeks later?

I didn’t think so.

The World Series thing would never really be the same for me after that Tony Fernandez homer off Armando Benitez.

Because when you feel your team can’t win, you don’t really want to play. Or even pay attention to baseball at all, really.

And for a lot of others around town, and now for me as well, October is 100 percent football season — not Oriole baseball playoff season.

And that’s really a shame, because one of the greatest sports days of this generation’s Baltimore sports fandom came because they both had clout on October 5, 1997.

That was a day to remember.

The Ravens were lining up to play the Pittsburgh Steelers at Memorial Stadium (they blew a huge halftime lead and lost as Kordell Stewart went nuts) and later in the day, the Orioles would clinch a berth in the ALCS by beating Randy Johnson and the Seattle Mariners, 3-1, behind ace Mike Mussina’s two-hitter less than four miles away at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. This pic of me congratulating Alan Mills (and Jeffrey Hammonds) in the Camden Yards clubhouse.

Ten days later the Orioles lost Game 6 to the Tribe downtown, and they haven’t played in a meaningful game since.

These nine years have been long and hard on anyone who ever loved Brooks and Frank and Cal and Eddie.

We want to send a message on September 21st that we’ve had enough. That’s what The Rally is all about!

When a poor kid from Dundalk doesn’t even want to go the World Series on a press pass junket anymore, something’s very wrong.

My World Series memories are all very vivid and cool to me, but 1998 was definitely my favorite.

In 1998, I finally got tickets to a World Series I could get excited about and actually root FOR a team a instead of against one.

San Diego has always been a special place in my life. Since that first trip to California in 1985 with my family, I’ve been back more times than I can honestly count — maybe 50 times, I dunno. But enough that I never need a map!

My favorite relative of all time, my Aunt Jane (she was my Pop’s sister from Scranton, Pa.) lived there high on a hill overlooking San Diego State University and Interstate 8 off College Avenue. She was an over-the-top “Reagan Republican” and had passion about two things in life: “saving” America in that Rush Limbaugh kinda way and the San Diego Padres.

She also paid attention to the Chargers and went to games, she had a cool garden and a really cool white dove that lived in a cage in her kitchen, but the Padres were right up there. She, like my Pop, had been to Yankee Stadium. She, like my Pop, absolutely LOVED baseball.

She was so involved at one point that she joined the “Madres,” which was the local community

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Bovada Sets Orioles Win Total At 69.5, Second Longest Odds to Win World Series

Posted on 14 March 2012 by WNST Staff

Odds to win the 2012 World Series     

Philadelphia Phillies                   11/2

New York Yankees                    13/2

Los Angeles Angels                   7/1

Detroit Tigers                             8/1

Texas Rangers                          10/1

Boston Red Sox                        10/1

San Francisco Giants                 15/1

Tampa Bay Rays                       18/1

Miami Marlins                            20/1

Cincinnati Reds                         20/1

Atlanta Braves                           22/1

St. Louis Cardinals                     25/1

Arizona Diamondbacks               28/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    28/1

Washington Nationals                30/1

Los Angeles Dodgers                 40/1

Toronto Blue Jays                      40/1

Chicago Cubs                            40/1

Colorado Rockies                       40/1

Cleveland Indians                       60/1

Chicago White Sox                    65/1

Minnesota Twins                        75/1

Kansas City Royals                   80/1

New York Mets                          80/1

Oakland Athletics                      80/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      100/1

San Diego Padres                      100/1

Seattle Mariners                        100/1

Baltimore Orioles                       150/1

Houston Astros                          200/1

Odds to win the 2012 AL Pennant       

New York Yankees                    13/4

Los Angeles Angels                   7/2

Detroit Tigers                             4/1

Boston Red Sox                        11/2

Texas Rangers                          11/2

Tampa Bay Rays                       9/1

Toronto Blue Jays                      22/1

Cleveland Indians                       28/1

Chicago White Sox                    35/1

Kansas City Royals                   40/1

Oakland Athletics                      40/1

Minnesota Twins                        40/1

Seattle Mariners                        60/1

Baltimore Orioles                       75/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 NL Pennant       

Philadelphia Phillies                   9/4

San Francisco Giants                 7/1

Atlanta Braves                           9/1

Cincinnati Reds                         9/1

Miami Marlins                            9/1

St. Louis Cardinals                     11/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    14/1

Washington Nationals                15/1

Arizona Diamondbacks               14/1

Colorado Rockies                       18/1

Los Angeles Dodgers                 18/1

Chicago Cubs                            22/1

New York Mets                          40/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      40/1

San Diego Padres                      50/1

Houston Astros                          100/1

Odds to win the 2012 AL East

New York Yankees                    2/3

Boston Red Sox                        3/1

Tampa Bay Rays                       9/2

Toronto Blue Jays                      12/1

Baltimore Orioles                       100/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 AL Central         

Detroit Tigers                             1/4

Cleveland Indians                       10/1

Kansas City Royals                   12/1

Chicago White Sox                    12/1

Minnesota Twins                        16/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 AL West

Los Angeles Angels                   4/5

Texas Rangers                          1/1

Oakland Athletics                      30/1

Seattle Mariners                        45/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 NL East

Philadelphia Phillies                   1/2

Miami Marlins                            11/2

Atlanta Braves                           6/1

Washington Nationals                8/1

New York Mets                          50/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 NL Central         

Cincinnati Reds                         7/5

St. Louis Cardinals                     2/1

Milwaukee Brewers                    11/4

Chicago Cubs                            18/1

Pittsburgh Pirates                      30/1

Houston Astros                          100/1

 

Odds to win the 2012 NL West

San Francisco Giants                 5/4

Arizona Diamondbacks               2/1

Los Angeles Dodgers                 11/2

Colorado Rockies                       7/1

San Diego Padres                      15/1

Over/Under Regular Season Win Totals

Arizona Diamondbacks               86½

Atlanta Braves                           86½

Baltimore Orioles                       69½

Boston Red Sox                        90½

Chicago Cubs                            73½

Chicago White Sox                    75½

Cincinnati Reds                         87½

Cleveland Indians                       78½

Colorado Rockies                       80½

Detroit Tigers                             91½

Miami Marlins                            85½

Houston Astros                          63½

Kansas City Royals                   78½

Los Angeles Angels                   91½

Los Angeles Dodgers                 80½

Milwaukee Brewers                    85½

Minnesota Twins                        72½

New York Mets                          73½

New York Yankees                    93½

Oakland Athletics                      72½

Philadelphia Phillies                   93½

Pittsburgh Pirates                      72½

San Diego Padres                      73½

San Francisco Giants                 87½

Seattle Mariners                        71½

St. Louis Cardinals                     85½

Tampa Bay Rays                       86½

Texas Rangers                          91½

Toronto Blue Jays                      81½

Washington Nationals                83½
courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv, Twitter: @BovadaLV).

 

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Chapter 6: Baseball punched me a ticket to see The World

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Chapter 6: Baseball punched me a ticket to see The World

Posted on 10 March 2012 by Nestor Aparicio

(Originally posted as a prelude to the “Free The Birds” walkout in Sept. 2006, this is Part 6 of a 19 Chapter Series on How Baseball and the Orioles berthed WNST.net.)

One day my Pop came home from work in the Spring of 1983 and during dinner announced that we should go on a vacation in the upcoming summer.

Other than Venezuela in 1972, when we took my lone airplane ride, and Disney World in 1978 when we took Amtrak, I had never been much past Ocean City (I had only been there a handful of times because my Uncle Omar had a joint on 28th Street Bayside behind the Jolly Roger amusement park).

We usually just went “home” to South Carolina to visit my Mom’s family and chilled while she visited all her old neighbors and friends. My Pop and I would spend those summer days almost entirely at the Abbeville Civic Center. It wasn’t at all like OUR Baltimore Civic Center with seats and stuff. It was just a little gym with a lobby and my Pop and I would shoot baskets for hours in that hotbox gym. There wasn’t anything else to do in the tiny little South Carolina town. All of my relatives were older than my Mom and she’s now 87. So every one of them was well into their 70′s then and have since passed away.

My Aunt Earline made eggs and bacon and biscuits in the morning and fried chicken in the afternoon. Her sister, my Aunt Edna — she was a cool old lady, she took me to the NWA wrestling matches in Greenwood, S.C. one night! — made the world’s best chocolate fudge (I recently found the recipe!) and fresh peach ice cream in a churn for dessert on alternating days. We picked pecans off the tree in the back yard on Ellis Street and tossed them into a batch of that incredible fudge. And I would throw a super-sized Superball (they were bigger than the normal ones and very rock solid) against the siding of my Aunt Eleanor’s house up the street, pretending I was Nolan Ryan when I wasn’t in that hot gym.

That was vacation for me. There were no other kids, and the black/white thing in Abbeville, S.C., even then in the late 1970′s, was kind of in the backdrop as well. I ran around, dreamed and chased these weird, techni-color grasshoppers they had all over the place.

Kind of Napoleon Dynamite pathetic, huh?

But it’s really true, as I look back upon it.

I was bored as hell (except when my Aunt Edna was involved) and all I really wanted to do was stay at home in Colgate and play baseball on the church lot with my friends, anyway. But I did get to eat some great food in South Carolina. And, one time, a pretty Southern girl painted an orange Clemson paw print on my face at a park called Hickory Knob State Park!

So, when my Pop announced a chance at a trip, he looked to me. I was 14, it was the summer of 1983 and where would I want to go or what would I want to do?
Clearly, it had to involve baseball. And if involved baseball in 1983, it definitely 

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Chapter 5: The Orioles and Colts weren’t the only teams that mattered

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Chapter 5: The Orioles and Colts weren’t the only teams that mattered

Posted on 09 March 2012 by Nestor Aparicio

(Originally published as a prelude to the “Free The Birds” walkout in Sept. 2006, this is Part 5 of a 19 Chapter Series on How baseball, my father and the Orioles created WNST.net. We are planning some civic action on Thursday, April 5. Please plan to join us…)

This is probably the story that I hate to admit the most on the radio. It involves youthful ignorance, disgusting twists and turns and, ultimately, I think more than just a tad bit of old-fashioned adolescent rebellion.

I don’t think anyone could ever picture me as a rebel, right?

If what I really say about comparing the Baltimore sports scene is true  — “the Ravens are my girlfriend, but the Orioles are my wife” and I DID warn you that I can find a baseball analogy for virtually ANY situation in life, or vice versa — then at one point I had a few “flings.”

A couple of those steamy, whirlwind romances that feel so good you don’t even feel GUILTY about it in the morning. It’s a “new” love, a satisfaction that only something “fresh” will give you.

My first one occurred back in the 1970′s, really the first day that the “fan” came out in the fanatic.

My Pop took me to my first Colts game on Sept. 23, 1973 to see “Broadway” Joe Namath and the New York Jets. No need to run you through the whys and wherefores of Super Bowl III (if I gotta do THAT, you probably shouldn’t be reading or hearing this!), but suffice to say this city had what my Pop would describe as a “hard on” for the Jets — to say the least!

I was three weeks shy of my 5th birthday, so I was technically 4 years old and off to a Colts’ football game we go. Unlike my memories of my first Oriole game being a little more cloudy and distant, my recollections of my first Colts game is so vivid it’s really kinda spooky.

The Colts lost that game 34-10, and even though I don’t need to look that up, I AM staring at the program from that game just six inches to my left. The fact that I can move my left hand and touch this program and, somehow, touch my father through it and touch the smell of the air that day is incredible — a powerful, powerful thing.

But that’s just how good sports can be and why The Rally on Sept. 21st downtown is important.

On that day in September 1973, Johnny Unitas had just left, the franchise was in a shambles and the embryo that would birth an exit from Baltimore, “Tiger” Bob Irsay and his drunken ownership hijinks, was gestating. Marty Domres was the starting quarterback and Bert Jones was a puppy, but the team had the key compenents to what would go on to be a fabulous team to watch from 1975 through 1977 — a team that gave Pittsburgh and Oakland a run for their money each year as a solid AFC East team. Lydell Mitchell, Ken Mendenhall, Joe Ehrmann, David Taylor, Mike Barnes — they were all there that day.

Stan White knocked Joe Namath out of the game that day and, 33 years later, I get to compete with him every day on Baltimore radio. I just think that’s kinda cool, even if he never has! Stan White was a hero of mine as a kid because he smacked Joe Namath in the mouth (or in the case, the shoulder).

My Pop didn’t think that sucked, either!

We sat in the middle of centerfield — or at least that’s what it was to me, the bleacher seats. I thought it was kinda nifty that we got to actually WALK on the baseball field. I remember how BIG everyone was and how gigantic the stadium looked from centerfield. I remember the band and I’m sure it was the first time I ever heard the “Colts Fight Song.”

At some point during the blowout, my Pop and I left, resigned to grabbing the No. 22 bus back to Highlandtown. En route, I wanted to stop and get a souvenir. I wanted to get something that had something to do with Johnny Unitas. I didn’t really know who Johnny Unitas was but I knew he was

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Chapter 4: Got any 33rd Street memories? Time will not dim the glory…

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Chapter 4: Got any 33rd Street memories? Time will not dim the glory…

Posted on 08 March 2012 by Nestor Aparicio

(Originally published in Sept. 2006 as a prelude to the “Free The Birds” walkout, this is Part 4 of a 19 Chapter Series on how baseball and the Orioles created WNST.net. If you miss “The Oriole Way” and Baltimore’s love of baseball, please join us on April 5th for a civic action event.)

So, today I wanted to write and think about and talk about Memorial Stadium and 33rd Street and the wonder of baseball as a child in Baltimore.

Thirty-third street. The World’s Largest Outdoor Insane Asylum. The memories, the stories, the things we saw and experienced, the words we said and heard, and the people we shared it all with.

At the end of the day, Memorial Stadium was about people.

But, honest to God, I don’t know where to begin!

Look I don’t want to get too deep, but go ahead and show me a place where more people in this community have gone, worshipped without regard to race, color, creed, religion — and all came together in a common civic bond. There were only two colors that ever mattered on 33rd Street. Orange in the spring and summer; blue from fall through the cold of winter and that was that!

As for its significance and impact on our community, there must’ve been a reason why grown men wept in the aisles there on Oct. 6, 1991 when the Orioles walked away from 37 years of history on 33rd Street. Or literally, a MILLION different reasons to ponder, reflect and pay tribute to the good times of our lives, especially for those who experience our lives through this prism that is “sports” over the last century.

Memorial Stadium is one of those places: if you were ever there and experienced any of the “Oriole Magic” then you just know what I’m talking about. And if you weren’t, there isn’t a columnist alive or any old grainy clip or any soundtrack that could ever make it as vivid and real and clear as it is to the rest of us who felt “The Magic.”

As it turned out, that giant sign with the steely letters was indeed prophetic. Major League Baseball has been gone for 15 years now and the sign said it all:
“Time Will Not Dim The Glory Of Their Deeds!”

So, instead of getting even more poetic, I’ll just tell you a few of my favorite stories.

Hopefully, they’ll remind you of yours.

And, hopefully, these incredible memories will trigger a voice pulling you downtown

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