Author Archives: Neil Roberts

About Neil Roberts

Proud alum of Washington State University, crazy sports nut, and drinker of beer.

The Seattle Mariners, and the San Francisco Giants,are looking at trading for Chicago White Sox outfielder Dayan Viciedo according to MLB Trade rumors. General Manager Jack Zduriencik is looking to add more right-handed power bats to the line-up to help balance out the left-handed hitters on the roster. Seattle is also in desperate need of more consistent offensive production from the left fielders.

That’s why the interest in Viciedo makes a lot of sense for the Mariners. He is a right-handed power bat, that is young (25) and under club control for a few years (until 2017).

Apparently the Mariners initially engaged in discussions to acquire Viciedo during Spring Training. But with the White Sox scuffling — 40-46 record, 10 games behind the Tigers in the AL Central on July 4th — and the Mariners currently in the second wild card spot — and trailing Oakland by 4.5 games in the AL West — it makes sense for these two squads to again be talking about the “struggling” outfielder. Continue Reading->

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MLB offensive decline is due to pitching, not more home runs

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The decline of offense, and scoring, in the MLB since the end of the steroid era has been something that has been a topic of discussionfor a while now. With the end of the steroid era, came the end of baseball’s dominating era of offense. No longer were players juicing up and able to smash extra base hits with regularity; now batters are facing pitchers who aren’t terrified of pitching over the plate. As a result, offensive production has been trending downwards across the league.

But that doesn’t mean that fans are going to except the offensive decline without postulating a reason for said decline (like this).

The part of that article that got my attention was this:

“In modern baseball the hero’s are the guys who hit the walk-off homerun, not the guy that started a rally in the sixth inning with a one out single…

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A quick look at Endy Chavez’s MLB performance in 2014

Sports with Neil and friends

Endy Chavez was first called up from the minors in 2001. He has since spent the entirety of his 14-year career bouncing the minors and the majors. The 2014 season has been more of the same for Chavez, as he started with Triple-A Tacoma before being called up to Seattle on May 30th. Chavez has been getting plenty of playing time since his call-up, a move that has generated a lot controversy among fans. That controversy is for a good reason, as his peripherals are really weird — no like really weird — but he hasn’t been a black hole for the Mariners; and most of his production has come with him at the top of the batting order.

Chavez is in his third stint with the Mariners

Chavez’s slash line this season isn’t exactly encouraging, and in fact gives you the impression of an aging athlete who is over…

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US soccer loses 0-1 to Germany, but advances anyway

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The United States men’s soccer team lost to the German national team 0-1 in the final match of group play, but is going to advance to the round of 16 anyways. Germany’s victory gave them the points victory in Group G, and the better match-up in the knockout rounds. US soccer is advancing, despite the loss, thanks to Portugal’s 2-1 victory over Ghana (US has a better goal differential than Portugal).

The match’s only goal came in the 55th minute when US goal keeper Tim Howard made an incredible save that deflected the ball out to German Thomas Müller. Müller hit the game winning shot from the edge of the box, and put all of the pressure on the United States to score an equalizer.

Müller’s goal was spurred on by the introduction of striker Miroslav Klose after the half. Klose’s play immediately made the German offensive attack more dangerous as he…

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Portugal’s late goal forces a 2-2 draw, USA soccer needs a draw to advance

The United State’s men soccer team dominated Portugal throughout heir match during group play. But a goal in the 95th minute cost the American team three points, and means that the USA needs to record a draw against German to move on in the World Cup.

Portugal winger Silvestre Varela headed in the match tying goal with 3o seconds left in stoppage time. Varela’s goal came thanks to a fast break on the right side by Cristiano Ronaldo, who fired off a perfect cross pass to set up the final goal.

Outside of the tying goal, the Americans pretty much controlled the match. With goals coming from Clint Dempsey (81st minute) and Jermaine Jones (64th minute) that gave the US a 2-1 lead. Continue Reading->

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MLB Divisional Power Rankings for May

So far in the 2014 MLB season has seen an exceptional amount of mediocrity from the majority of its teams, and only a handful have clearly established that they are better (or worse) than the middling pack. This is especially true in the American League, were there are only five teams that posses a positive run differential; and five teams are within two games of the second wild card spot — the NL has only one team within two games, the rest are three or more games back.

It’s kind of interesting to see how people are complaining about how mediocre the AL has been over the first 50, or so, games in 2014. But in reality, the AL isn’t nearly as mediocre as people want to think…and this shows in our divisional power rankings, as the junior circuit has 11 more points in our divisional power rankings than the senior circuit.

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Pac-12 Presidents send out a letter with suggested changes to the NCAA

The NCAA has been a laughable debacle over the last decade and that situation has become worse under the organization’s President Mark Emmert. In fact, the way the NCAA has governed college athletics has been so controversial, that a couple of members of the United States House of Representatives talked about passing legislation to force the NCAA to change. In fact, the Pac-12 athletic conference has sent out a letter to the presidents of the universities in the other power conferences (ACC, SEC, Big-12, and the Big Ten) with 10-points that they would like to see changed.

These 10-points that were made by the Pac-12 presidents made include giving the student athletes a greater voice in the decision-making process, providing medical assistance or insurance to athletes injury while participating in their scholarship sport, decrease demands on the athletes during the athletic season, giving the athletes a bigger say in the decision-making process, give the major conferences more autonomy, etc. Continue Reading->

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