Archive for September, 2012

Gilbert Arenas says he’s considering signing with Lakers

BY ROBERT LITTAL, syndication

Gilbert Arenas played is just 17 games last season for the Memphis Grizzlies. Photo by: Truthaboutit / Flickr

Gilbert may want to sign with the Lakers or the Clippers, but to my understanding neither team has any interest in him.

Agent Zero was tracked down at a gas station and was asked by the owner what was his plans were for next year (yes this is a true story). Here is what he said via Considering that Steve Blake hurt his foot on a parking lot spike (yeah that sounds fishy to me as well), I guess the Lakers could bring him for a look see similar to how they did last season before Arenas ended up on the Grizzlies where he barely averaged 4.2 points per game.

Arenas, 30, has played 11 seasons for __ teams, but fizzled out after bringing in a weapon into the Washington Wizards locker room. After that incident, it seemed as if Arenas never returned to his former MVPesque self. He did have a good season two years, however, averaging about 18 points per game. But in the offseason the point guard never really drew much interest from any NBA team.

Seems like everyone either wants to play in LA, Miami or NY, sorry Bobcats you simply will never prosper.

Be sure to check out other great articles at BlackSportsOnline.

Atlanta Braves would do well to skip Tommy Hanson in rotation

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Tommy Hanson hasn’t looked like the team’s ace this season, posting a 4.46 ERA and a 12-9 record in 2012. Photo by: Walkboss ! / Flickr

BY CODY FIELDS, syndication

Tommy Hanson is scheduled for two more starts this season, but the Atlanta Braves would benefit from skipping the recently inconsistent starter.

Hanson’s most recent start on Sept. 21 was just the latest step in Hanson’s plagued second half of the year. He gave up five earned runs over 5 1/3 innings against the Philadelphia Phillies in the loss, even admitting that his recent outings have been poor.

“I feel like I’m battling my ass off to help my teammates out and to help my team win, and as of right now I’m not doing a very good job,” Hanson told Dave O’Brien after his last start. “It was a horseshit day. I’m not pulling  my weight around here right now.”

While admitting his problem is a good step (as opposed to when Dan Uggla denied he had issues when Fredi Gonzalez benched him earlier this month), no excuse can be found for the lack of command Hanson has experienced since the All-Star Game. The numbers don’t lie.

Going into the All-Star break, Hanson had already won 10 games with a respectable 3.71 ERA. The .254 opponents’ batting average wasn’t particularly spectacular, but he was getting wins.

Just like in 2011, however, everything fell apart after the Midsummer Classic. The second half has seen Hanson struggled to a 2-4 record in 11 starts with a ballooned 5.88 ERA with opponents hitting .293 against him. The 30 walks he has issued in that span are ninth most in the National League with seven of those coming July 25 against the Miami Marlins in a win.

The current options for his replacement include Ben Sheets, Randall Delgado and Julio Teheran. Since Delgado struggled early in the season and Teheran still hasn’t tasted the Major Leagues this year, it would seem Sheets is the most logical choice. (more…)

Couch Side Podcast 30: Replacement NFL refs need replaced

Click below to start listening 

BY staff

Couch Side hosts Wade McMillin (left) and Craig Paul reenact how NFL referees and the leagues head coach’s interact every week.

Sadly, the Couch Side crew didn’t see the ending of the Seahawks-Packers game. However, hosts Wade McMillin and Craig Paul wee chalked full of opinions about how the NFL officials need replaced anyhow in this week’s “Big Picture”. Our hosts also break down Week Three of the NFL and preview Week Four in our Monday Night Maestros segment. Also stick around for the end of the show for Fantasy Football advice, which insludes how to players who might be injured and the hot pickups on the Week Four waiver wire.

Click here to stream, download or subscribe Couch Side Episode 30: Replacement NFL refs need replaced via iTunes 

Click here to stream Couch Side Episode 30: Replacement NFL refs need replaced, via Talkshoe

Click here to download Couch Side Episode 30: Replacement NFL refs need replaced, via Talkshoe

NHL player lockout leaves league in a mess

BY IAN PALMER, syndication

Like almost all American professional sports leagues, the National Hockey League may experience a player lockout, putting this season in jeopardy. Photo by: jpellgen / Flickr

The NHL’s in a mess right now due to the player lockout. Players are jumping ship with many of them signing on with European teams to make sure they get a steady paycheck while NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHL Players’ Union rep Donald Fehr try to bang out a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA). The old one expired on Sept. 15 and as soon as it did Bettman and the owners locked the players out.

The league announced on Sept. 19 that all exhibition games until the end of September have been officially cancelled. This represents 61 games in total. Training camps were supposed to start up on Fri. Sept. 21, but this won’t be happening and there are still 46 exhibition contests scheduled for October, with the league’s opening night pencilled in for Oct. 11. The October exhibition games, which were to run until Oct. 7, haven’t been officially cancelled as of yet, but unless an agreement’s made soon they’ll be the next to go.

One rumor circulating around is the use of replacement players if the lockout continues into the New Year. The league has previously lost a whole season and a half a season in previous labor disputes and this time it might try something drastic to keep itself in the public eye by using replacements for the NHL stars as they earn their money in Europe. (more…)

American League MVP Race: Trout versus Cabrera

L.A. Angels outfielder Mike Trout (left) and Detroit Tigers infielder Miguel Cabrera are clearly the two front runners to earn this year’s American League MVP. Trout photo by: Lauren Flickr — Cabrera Photo by: WEBN-TV / Flickr


Much has been bandied and ballyhooed about the AL MVP race lately. Will it be Mike Trout? Miguel Cabrera? Miguel Olivo? The race that some thought was over in August has revived a familiar narrative in September: The idea of September performance trumping everything else.

Cabrera in September has 1.261 OPS with 8 home runs through 17 games. Trout is merely hitting at a .726 OPS with 4 steals. Various fans and media members are pointing at these results and crafting this narrative that suddenly Cabrera is now the frontrunner, or about to pass Trout for the MVP.

Does this make sense?

Why does one hot week in September guarantee winning the MVP?

Oh wait, it doesn’t, or at least shouldn’t.

There’s no such thing as a benchmark for MVP, Mark McGwire finished second in the ’98 MVP voting to Sammy Sosa. If breaking the all-time home run record in a season (at the time) doesn’t automatically lock up the MVP, then I don’t know what does.

The proof here is in the narrative pudding, and it tastes terrible. Out of the blue it seemed like someone, somewhere needed to inject drama into this race, just so people could talk about again. Both the Angels and the Tigers teams are on the outside looking in regards to the playoff race, and it’s not as if Trout or Cabrera by themselves can overcome the flaws of the roster.


Expanded MLB playoff format could bolster baseball’s popularity

Although Eric O’ Flaherty and the Atlanta Braves have been atop the wildcard standings all season long, they would still have to play a one-game playoff with another wildcard team to reach the postseason with baseball’s new playoff system. Photo by: John W. Iwanski / Flickr


With the expansion of the MLB playoffs to include an additional wild card team in each league, baseball may finally be relevant to more than the diehard fan.

The wild card was first added in 1995 to expand each division to include 4 playoff teams. This was great for baseball and since its addition we have seen 5 wild card teams go on to win the World Series, most notably the 2004 Boston Red Sox. However, some might argue that what the St. Louis Cardinals did in 2011 (23-9 in their final games and overcoming a 10.5 game deficit to clinch the wild card) may trump the magical run that Boston put together just 7 years before.

By expanding the wild card to include two teams from each division baseball and its fans come out winners. Each wild card race is suddenly expanded to include more teams vying for a playoff spot. And with games happening every day, the races will no doubt play out until the final days of the regular season. Take the current season for example. If the playoffs still included just one wild card team, the Atlanta Braves would have a 6.5 game lead over St. Louis, and the L.A. Dodgers would be 8.5 games out of the lead. Instead, by including a second wild card team, the Dodgers are only 2 games back and have a legitimate shot at making the playoffs. Even the Arizona Diamondbacks and Pittsburgh Pirates are still in the playoff chase just 4.5 games back of St. Louis (with only one wild card spot, these teams would be 11 games back and likely playing AAA call-ups to gain experience). With the current playoff format we now have a seven team race for two spots in the NL (6 teams if you consider that Atlanta holds a 8.5 game lead over the Dodgers, the closest team that could threaten their playoff chances) and a five team race in the AL. (more…)