Friday, April 4, 2014

It's Time To Cut The Head Off The Angels Snake

That is one big snake!
Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia
Keith Allison under CC BY-SA 2.0 License

Over the past five years of mediocrity, I have tried to be as patient as I can hoping for an Angels turnaround. Well that's all changed.  It's frustrating to know that the Angels have an owner in Arte Moreno who seems to run his franchise like Jerry Jones runs the Dallas Cowboys in football.  Now I know there's no point in thinking Moreno will fire himself or sell the team in the near future because that's not going to happen.




I'm here to tell you that my patience has run out.  April 2, 2014 may just turn out to be an important day in my Angels' fandom.  That wasn't the day I realized Arte Moreno wasn't the world's greatest owner after all.  I found that out a long time ago.  No, April 2 of this year was the day I officially joined the "Fire Mike Scioscia!" bandwagon.  The reality is he probably should have been canned at the end of last season.  Well Sosh, I've had it with your apathetic attitude and inept strategy as a field general!  You know it's bad when players are openly griping, whether it's right or wrong, about the shortcomings of a coaching staff a mere three games into the season.   As the fictional Howard Beale says in the film Network, "I'M MAD AS HELL, AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!"     

There are those who are going to say that it's still early in the season, so there should be no reason to push the panic button when the Halos have only played 3 games coming into tonight without notching a win.  Well I say it's time to push the panic button and push it hard!

What's so baffling about the whole situation is the Angels actually had a good Spring Training for a change that brought some much needed optimism to a increasingly impatient fanbase.

Long gone are the days when the Angels faithful were willing to subject themselves to last place finishes year in and year out.  The difference between then and now is the expectations and aspirations weren't as intense as they are in today's win now philosophy in sports.

I will still keep tabs on the Angels and hold on to a slight glimmer of hope that they will turn in around, but the longer they keep their stubborn manager around, they will remain a hapless bunch with no shot at postseason glory.





Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved

       

MLB 2014 Where To Watch And How To Listen: Seattle Mariners

This is a new series of posts with the goal of providing the most in-depth and up to date information possible on where you can watch and listen to your favorite MLB team's local broadcasts. (For those who live outside the local broadcast area, Major League Baseball offers subscriptions to mlb.tv).


Seattle Mariners
Photo Courtesy of:
Wikimedia
BlueCanoe under CC BY-SA 3.0 License
 

Radio Broadcasts

ESPN Radio KIRO 710 AM

Commentators: Rick Rizz, Aaron Goldsmith (play-by-play), Matt Pitman (pre/postgame host), Shannon Drayer (clubhouse reporter).

KIRO 710 AM is the flagship radio station of the Seattle Mariners and the Seattle Mariners Radio Network. KIRO is based in Seattle, Washington and has a sports talk format.

The Mariners Radio Network carries M's broadcasts throughout the Pacific Northwest, Alaska and Hawaii.

Television Broadcasts

Root Sports Northwest

Channel Availability:

DirecTV-687 (HD/SD)
Dish Network-426 (HD/SD)

Commentators: Dave Sims, Rick Rizz (play-by-play), Mike Blowers, Dan Wilson, Jay Buhner (color analysts), Brad Adam (pre/postgame host), Jen Mueller (field reporter).

Root Sports Northwest is an American regional sports network that is part of Root Sports.  It is an affiliate of Fox Sports Networks that serves Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska.  It is owned by DirecTV Sports Networks and the Seattle Mariners.





Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Northwestern Football To Unionize?

Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia
KoreAm under CC BY-SA 3.0 License

The Northwestern Football union ruling last week could signify a monumental to the future landscape of college sports.  Either way you look at it, the issue of whether or not to unionize in college athletics is definitely not so cut and dry.



On the one hand I feel that college athletics, particularly in Division I, has a definite business aspect to even though the NCAA seems to do everything it can to dispute such a viewpoint.  Most recruits are brought into a college for what they can provide on the playing field while a proper college education is pushed to the side in most cases.  Another thing is while former Northwestern player Kain Colter has said the main desire with unionizing is due to medical concerns for players, I find it hard to believe that's the only motivating factor behind the union movement.

As the days have gone by since this news first broke, I have done a lot of thinking as to whether this would be good or bad for college athletics.  My initial reaction was that a union in college athletics would be a good thing overall but now I'm not so sure.

No matter how you or I feel about this movement, I think there will be a time when unions are a part of college athletics in the future.



Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved    

Monday, March 31, 2014

Opening Day 2014 Is Here!

Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia
abrowncoat under CC BY-SA 2.0 License

The wait is finally over!  One of the greatest days in all of sports has arrived!  With that in mind, here is how I see everything playing out as we enjoy what should be a national holiday.


AL East

Tampa Bay Rays: 97-65
Boston Red Sox: 95-67
New York Yankees: 92-70
Baltimore Orioles: 85-77
Toronto Blue Jays: 82-80

The AL East is usually one of the better divisions in baseball year in and year out and this year will be no exception.  Having said that, it will be a three team race down the stretch.  In the end, I think Joe Maddon's bunch will find a way to get it done like they always seem to do.

AL Central

Detroit Tigers: 95-67
Cleveland Indians: 93-69
Kansas City Royals: 90-72
Chicago White Sox: 85-77
Minnesota Twins: 79-83

The AL Central will come down to another three team race.  Will all the money being spent, there should be no reason why the Tigers should be at the top of the division yet again.  Miguel Cabrera will probably be Miguel Cabrera, or something close to that, even though that new contract will be an albatross as the years go by.  The only question marks for the Motor City cats are Brad Ausmus' impact as manager and the shortstop situation with the absence of Jose Iglesias.

AL West

Oakland Athletics: 94-68
Texas Rangers: 92-70
Los Angeles Angels: 87-75
Seattle Mariners: 82-80
Houston Astros: 60-102

I feel like a broken record.  Even though both teams have injury concerns, I can't bet against the Rangers and Athletics to battle it out for the top spot.  If the injured players on the A's and Rangers miss a significant amount of time, then I could possibly see the Angels moving closer to the top.  As was the case the last couple of years, it will come down to the pitching and defense.  Let's just hope that sometime over the next 7 years, Mike Trout will get a taste of the postseason.

NL East

Washington Nationals: 95-67
Atlanta Braves: 91-71
Philadelphia Phillies: 80-82
New York Mets: 75-87
Miami Marlins: 72-90

The Nats are the most complete team in the NL East.  I think new manager Matt Williams will do a great job guiding the squad in 2014.  The Atlanta Braves will still be competitive but the absence of pitchers Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy will make it hard for the Bravos to repeat as division champs.

NL Central

St. Louis Cardinals: 99-63
Pittsburgh Pirates: 97-65
Cincinnati Reds: 90-72
Milwaukee Brewers: 79-83
Chicago Cubs: 69-93

The St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates will be the cream of the crop in the NL Central.  Regardless of the final standings at the end of the year, one team will win the division while the other will be a Wild Card.

NL West

Los Angeles Dodgers: 96-66
San Francisco Giants: 90-72
San Diego Padres: 83-79
Arizona Diamondbacks: 81-81
Colorado Rockies: 76-86

With the number one payroll in baseball, the boys in blue should be the kings of the NL West.  The only question will be how much time will go by before fans in L.A. can see their beloved Dodgers on television?

Playoffs

AL Wild Card: Red Sox over Indians.

ALDS: Rays over Red Sox in 5, A's over Tigers in 4.

ALCS: Rays over A's in 6.

NL Wild Card: Pirates over Braves.

NLDS: Cardinals over Pirates in 5, Dodgers over Nationals in 4.

NLCS: Cardinals over Dodgers in 7.

World Series: Cardinals over Rays in 7.


Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved

MLB 2014 Where To Watch And How To Listen: San Diego Padres

This is a new series of posts with the goal of providing the most in-depth and up to date information possible on where you can watch and listen to your favorite MLB team's local broadcasts.  (For those who live outside the local broadcast area, Major League Baseball offers subscriptions to mlb.tv).


San Diego Padres
Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia
Ewen Roberts under CC BY 2.0 License



Radio Broadcasts

XEPRS 1090 AM "The Mighty 1090"

Commentators: Ted Leitner (play-by-play), Bob Scanlan (color analyst). Mike Pomeranz, (Pre/postgame host), Mark Sweeney (Pre/postgame host).  Former manager and military veteran Jerry Coleman passed away on January 6 2014.

XEPRS 1090 AM is the flagship radio station of the San Diego Padres.  It is an American-operated sports talk radio station targeting English-speaking listeners in San Diego.

Television Broadcasts

Fox Sports (FS) San Diego

Channel Availability:

DirecTV-694 (HD/SD)
Dish Network-408 (HD/SD)
Cox Cable San Diego-56 (SD), 1056 (HD)
Cox Cable Tucson-73 (SD), 1073 (HD)
Cox Cable Las Vegas-96 (SD), 1096 (HD)
Time Warner Cable San Diego-61 (SD), 732 (HD)
Time Warner Cable El Centro-20 (SD), 720 (HD)
Time Warner Cable Desert Cities (Coachella Valley)-76 (SD), 685 (HD)
Time Warner Cable Yuma-70 (SD), 799 (HD)
Time Warner Cable Hawaii-227 (SD)
ATT U-Verse San Diego-776 (SD), 1776 (HD)

Commentators: Dick Enberg (play-by-play), Mark Grant, Tony Gwynn (color analysts), Mike Pomeranz, (Pre/postgame host), Mark Sweeney (Pre/postgame host).  Tony Gwynn is color analyst for select games.

Fox Sports San Diego is an American regional sports network that serves the San Diego metropolitan area, neighboring Imperial County, as well as Coachella Valley, Las Vegas Valley, Southern Arizona and Hawaii. It is operated as an affiliate of Fox Sports Networks.  The channel is owned as a joint venture between Fox Cable Networks (80% ownership stake), and the San Diego Padres (20% ownership stake).  Fox Cable Networks is a unit of the Fox Entertainment Group division of 21st Century Fox.


Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved    

Friday, March 28, 2014

NFL Institutes New Goal Post Slam Dunk Penalty

Let's just call the new penalty the "Jimmy Graham Rule."
Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia
Jeffrey Beall under CC BY-SA 3.0 License

When will the ridiculousness end?!  At this week's owners' meetings, the NFL decided to make slam dunks into goalposts after touchdowns illegal.



The reason for this new penalty apparently is to guard against the goalposts being bent out of shape, thus becoming a little lopsided.  This particular scenario occurred in a game on November 21 of last year when Jimmy Graham of the New Orleans Saints bent the goalpost in the Georgia Dome against the Atlanta Falcons.

As always it seems, the safety and health argument figures to have prevailed here and I have no issues with that.  On the other hand, what's wrong with having a player being about to celebrate a big moment in a game such as a touchdown?

I'm coming to the realization that the game of football as I once knew it is not the game that it used to be some years back.  I'm okay with certain changes geared towards protecting players from concussions, but rule changes involving player celebrations seems a little excessive.  The NFL is surely not doing itself any favors to live down its nickname of the "No Fun League."



Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved    

MLB 2014 Where To Watch And How To Listen: Los Angeles Angels

This is a series of new posts with the goal of providing the most in-depth and up to date information possible on where can watch and listen to your favorite MLB team's local broadcasts. (For those who live outside the local broadcast area, Major League Baseball offers subscriptions to mlb.tv).


Los Angeles Angels
Photo Courtesy of: Wikimedia 
Keith Allison under CC BY-SA 2.0 License


Radio Broadcasts

KLAA 830 AM

Commentators: Terry Smith (play-by-play), Jose Mota (son of Manny Mota) (Spring Training color analyst), Mark Langston (regular season color analyst), Darren Chan (producer/engineer).

KLAA 830 AM is the flagship station of the Los Angeles Angels.  It is a sports format radio station licensed in Orange, California.  It is owned by the Angels.  It is the only Orange County station with adequate coverage of the Los Angeles County area.  As an Angels fan, I only listen to the station when the games are on.   The station also has rights to broadcast the games for the Anaheim Ducks (NHL), Oakland Raiders (NFL) and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (College Football).

The other various sports talk shows that are on during the day are not worth listening to, such as Roger Lodge's show.

Television Broadcasts

Fox Sports (FS) West, Prime Ticket (select games).

Channel Availability:


DirecTV-Fox Sports West: 692 (HD/SD), Prime Ticket: 693 (HD/SD)
Dish Network-Fox Sports West: 417 (HD/SD), Prime Ticket: 411 (HD/SD)
(Check local listings for cable providers).

Commentators: Victor Rojas (play-by-play), Mark Gubicza (color analyst), Kent French, Mark Rogondino (pre/postgame hosts), Jose Mota (son of Manny Mota) (pre/postgame analyst).



A little personal story about Jose Mota.  My mom and I were fortunate to meet him one time at a Trader Joe's store in San Dimas California.  We were going about our day getting groceries and he was standing in line at one of the checkout counters paying for his groceries.  After a few seconds of trying to figure out if it was indeed Mr. Mota, we went up to him and he was kind enough to have his picture taken with us inside the store!

Fox Sports West and Prime Ticket are American regional sports networks that are affiliates of Fox Sports Networks which serve Southern and Central California, southern Nevada and Hawaii.  The channels are owned by Fox Cable Networks, a unit of the Fox Entertainment Group division of 21st Century Fox.  Prime Ticket had the rights to Los Angeles Dodgers telecasts before the team started its own regional sports network with Time Warner Cable called Sportsnet LA in 2014.

Fox Sports West holds the exclusive rights to approximately 150 Angels games throughout the season. When other local team's games such as the Kings (NHL), Clippers (NBA), or Ducks (NHL) overlap with the Angels, the games can then be found on either Prime Ticket or on local channel KCOP 13 (very rare occurrences).  Select national broadcasts of Angel games can be found on Fox Saturday Baseball, ESPN, TBS and MLB Network.



Tim Musick
Copyright 2014
All Rights Reserved