Monthly Archives: September 2012

The MLB Playoffs Are Quickly Approaching

The long baseball season is nearing its end.  The summer is coming to an end and the Fall season is about to start.  With it will come the Major League Baseball Playoffs.  The first games of the playoffs start next weekend.  So let’s take a look at what teams are approaching the playoffs in this final week of the season.

The American League

The interesting note of the week is that no A.L. teams have clinched a playoff spot yet.  It has been a tight race for all of the divisional spots and especially for the two Wild Card spots.

East

In the East there is great competition between the division leading New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles.  The Yankees only lead that division by one game with the Rays in third place by only 5 games.

Central

The Central division has seen the Chicago White Sox fall quite a bit in the past week.  The White Sox are trailing the Detroit Tigers in the division by one game.  The third place team in the division is held by the Kansas City Royals who are fourteen games behind and have no hope for the playoffs.

West

The Western division has just as tight of a race as the Eastern division.  The Texas Rangers hold the top position with a record of 92-65.  The Oakland A’s have been surging ahead in the final month of the season and are only three games behind the Rangers.  In third place five games behind the Rangers are the Anaheim Angels. The Angels got off to a bad start at the beginning of the season but were able to turn their season around in the summer months.

Wild Card

Only six games separate the top five teams in the Wild Card race.  The Baltimore Orioles and the Oakland A’s are in the top spots.  The Angels are two games back.  The Rays are three games back, while the White Sox are six games back and will likely only be able to enter the playoffs with winning the Central division.

The National League

The almost half of the playoff spots in the N.L. have been claimed.  All but one of the divisions have champions already, which takes some of the excitement away.

East

This is the only division where a champion has not yet been crowned.  With the third place team the Phillies seventeen games back, its between only the Braves and the Nationals for the crown.  The Nationals have shocked the baseball world with an incredible season and they currently hold the top spot.  The braves are trailing by four games and still have a chance at winning the division.  Both the Nationals and Braves have clinched playoff spots.  The only question is which one will be the division champion and which one will be in the wild card position.

Central

The Cincinnati Reds won the division this past week.  They appear to be a team that could contend for the World Series Title in October.

West

The San Fransisco Giants won the division championship just a few days ago.  This team has been a great team built for the playoffs for a few years now.  The Giants won the World Series in 2010 and are looking to win their second in three years.

Wild Card

With the Braves having clinched a playoff birth there is only one wild card spot remaining.  The St Louis Cardinals hold the remaining spot at the moment.  The Dodgers and the Brewers are the only two teams that still have a chance for the remaining wild card.  The Dodgers are three games back while the Brewers are five back.  The Dodgers have been turning downward as September rolls along.  The Brewers have to win their remaining five games to have a chance.  The Cardinals will likely hold their position and go into a wild card playoff game with the Braves.

 

 

 

Top 3 Stories From Week 3 Of The NFL

Week 3 of the NFL season was one of the most unpredictable so far this season.  It also so more controversy over the replacement referees.  It was a very exciting group of games, so let’s take a look at 2centsworthofsports.com’s top 3 stories from this week in the NFL.

The Replacement Refs Blow The Game For The Packers

The replacement referees have been atrocious the season.  They have missed many calls and made wrong ones as well.  On Monday Night the stand in refs made the worst call of the season.  In closing seconds of the final quarter with the Packers leading the Seahawks 12-7 the unthinkable happened.  Seahawks QB Russell Wilson completed a pass to Wide Receiver Golden Tate for the win, or did he.  What actually happened was Packers Defensive Back M.D. Jennings intercepted the pass and had it wrestled away from him by Tate while on the ground.  The play was reviewed referee Wayne Elliot who stated ”the ruling on the field stands”.  The Seattle faithful loved it but NFL fans everywhere were outraged.  This seasons referee’s have been horrible and until the lock out ends with the veteran refs we might be seeing a lot more games end this way.

Many Strong Teams Upset By Unlikely Foes

The season has only seen a few up sets during the first two weeks of play.  Week three brought with it many upsets.  The lowly Jaguars defeated the Colts on the road by a score of 22-17, outscoring the Colts 19-3 in the second half.  The Chiefs defeated the Saints in overtime 27-24.  The Bengals beat the Redskins 38-31, with excellent play from their QB Andy Dalton who threw for over 300 yards and had 3 TD passes.  The Titans stunned the Lions 44-41 in overtime.  The 49ers were defeated in the Metro dome by the Vikings 24-13.  The Steelers lost to the aiders 34-31, even though “Big” Ben Roethlisberger had a great game with 384 yards passing and 4 TD’s.  It was a wild and crazy Sunday.  Who know maybe we will see more of this as teams that have been lower level become stronger and more competitive.

Matt Schaub Takes An Illegal Hit And Losses Part Of His Ear

On Sunday afternoon the Houston Texans came into Denver to face the Broncos.  What happened would be one of the most gruesome sights in recent memory. The Texans QB Matt Schaub dropped back for a pass and was tackled by two Broncos Defenders simultaneously.  His helmet popped off and he immediately grabbed his ear.  When he removed his hands from his head he was missing a chunk of the upper portion of his ear.  Schaub showed his toughness and continued to play throwing for almost 300 yards and had 4 TD passes.  The Texans won the game by a score of 31-25.

Top 3 Stories From Week 4 Of College Football

College Football had their fourth week of action on the 22nd of September.  We had an upset of a top 25 team, Heisman level performances and a one of the best games of the season this past Saturday.  So without further a do, 2centsworthofsports.com presents it’s top 3 stories.

The Hurricanes Defeat Georgia Tech In A Wild Game

The University of Miami and GA Tech squared off in an ACC battle on Saturday afternoon.  No one had any idea they were about to have one of the most exciting games of the season thus far.  Miami came out strong racking up a 19-0 lead in the first quarter.  Both touchdown passes of the first quarter came from Miami’s starting QB Stephen Morris.  GA Tech turned the tables in the second quarter scoring 22 unanswered points.  Two of those scores were rushing TD’s from Tech’s running back Tevin Washington, the first was a 2-yard run and the second a 10-yard run.  The score at halftime was 22-19 in favor of GA Tech.  The third quarter brought more success for Tech who had 2 rushing TD’s, from Tony Zenon and Tevin Washington.  Miami had only one field goal during the third quarter.  Tech led 36-22 going into the final quarter.  Miami came back in the fourth quarter with a rushing TD and passing TD to tie the game at 36 all and send the game into overtime.  In overtime running back Mike James rushed for a 25-yard game winning touchdown, the game ended with Miami on top 42-36.  This game was incredible and was a win the Hurricanes needed after starting the season with two disappointing losses.

#15 Kansas State upsets #6 Oklahoma

Kansas State came into Oklahoma on Saturday night with one objective.  The objective was to avenge a heartbreaking loss last season at the hands of the Sooners.  K State took the lead in the second quarter 7-3 with a 2 yard fumble recovered touchdown by Jarell Childs.  K State kept the lead for the most of the game.  The final score was 24-19 for K State.   K State’s QB Collin Klien was the star of the game with 149 yards passing and 79 rushing.  Klien also had a passing TD and scored a rushing TD with a 5-yard run into the end zone in the early part of the fourth quarter.  The Sooners’ QB Landry Jones had a bad game giving up a fumble and throwing for an interception.  The game puts Kansas State’s record at 4-0 and the win should put them in the top ten if not they will be very close.

#4 Florida State’s EJ Manuel Has A Great Game Against #10 Clemson

Florida State defeated Clemson 49-37 on Saturday night.  The win puts the Seminoles at 4-0 for the season and has them charging through the season after the National Championship.  The break out star of the night was FSU’s QB EJ Manuel.  Manuel passed for 380 yards and ran for 102.  He had two passing touchdowns while leading the Seminoles to the victory.  This was a great win for FSU against a top ten opponent at home.  The FSU faithful finally have a team that could capture the National Championship after years of not contending for the crown.  This game also showed that the Seminoles have a possible Heisman candidate in EJ Manuel.

Two Wild Card Teams, Too Many!

This past off season Major League baseball did something they had not done since 1994. It changed it’s playoff structure by adding a new element.

Prior to 1995 there were just four teams involved in the post season. There was an Eastern and Western Champion in Both leagues who would play each other for the League Championship. Those two winners would go into the World Series and face off against the opposing leagues Champion. This had been the case since 1969.

The new system was enacted in 1994 but due to the strike shortened season it debuted in 1995.  The system worked with each league having three divisions.  Each division winner would go to the playoffs and the team with the best record that did not win a division would also go to the post season.  There have been five wild card teams that have won a World Series since MLB instituted the wild card.

In November the commissioner of MLB, Bud Selig announced that their would be a second wild card team for each league.  The two wild card teams would play each other in a one game playoff.  The winner will advance to the divisional round of the playoffs and face one of the divisional champions.  All that was added was basically one more game to each leagues playoff.  We will see the first wild card playoff game in less than two weeks from now.

The new system obviously adds something to the final month of the season.  More teams will be in the hunt for the post season with the additional wild card.  Those teams games will also be more exciting down the stretch when MLB can be boring at times.  It will also create a new buzz in the playoffs.  However there is a draw back.

The two wild card teams might actually be pretty far apart records wise.  The second wild card team will be given an opportunity for the playoffs they may not deserve. As of right now you have two teams at the top of the National League wild card race.  The Atlanta Braves and the St. Louis Cardinals.  The braves lead the Cardinals by 6 games.  If the playoffs were to start today the Cardinals would get a one game playoff opportunity with the Braves they should not have.

This new system seems nice right now but over time it will dilute the MLB post season.  One wild card team per league is just enough.  If you have too many non playoff worthy teams getting a shot in the playoffs it will spell disaster for MLB.  This is just another scheme by Selig to make more money off of the last month of the season and add more money to the post season television deals.  MLB should go back to the four team per league system before the post season become watered down.  As the old adage goes if it is not broke don’t fix it.

Top 3 Stories From Week 2 Of The NFL

The incredible action of week 1 carried into week 2 on Sunday.  Week 2 brought many great match ups and answers to questions unanswered in week 1.  2centsworthofsports.com brings you the top 3 stories from the second week of the NFL.

Eli Manning Rallies His Giants Past The Buccs, Has A Career Game

Eli Manning
(Getty Images)

Eli Manning and the defending Super Bowl Champion New York Giants suffered a disappointing loss in week 1 to the Cowboys.  Anxious to prove they could repeat as Champions, the Giants played the Buccs in week 2 in what turned out to be a crazy game.  The Buccs came out strong in the 1st half leading the Giants 24-13 going into half time.  The Giants came out of half time only scoring 3 points in the 3rd quarter.  The 4th quarter is when the Giants picked it up a notch by scoring 25 points.  The Giants defeated the Buccs 41-34.  The game was one of the wildest of the first 2 weeks.  Eli Manning faltered early with 3 interceptions but made up for it with 510 yards passing and throwing for 3 touchdowns.  The 510 passing yards were a career record for Manning in one game.  The Buccs looked really strong in this game but lost due to Eli and his comeback heroics.  Eli and the Giants showed in week 2 that they are ready to attempt a repeat at the Championship this year.

Andrew Luck Wins 1st Career Game

Andrew Luck
(Getty Images)

The number 1 overall pick in April’s Draft Andrew Luck came in with high expectations.  In week 1 he did not meet them, week 2 was another story.  Luck helped his Indianapolis Colts win their 1st game of the season on Sunday against then Minnesota Vikings, winning by a score of 23-20.  Luck was 20-31 passing with 224 yards in the air and rushed for 21 yards.  Luck scored his first 2 touchdown passes of his career in this game, his first was to Dwayne Allen and his second to Reggie Wayne.  More importantly Luck threw no interceptions which was a huge improvement from week 1 where he threw 3.  Luck has definitely improved from week 1 and should develop into a really good NFL QB over the course of the season.

Matt Ryan And The Falcons Defeat Peyton Manning And The Broncos On Monday Night

Matt Ryan
(Getty Images)

On Monday Night the Broncos came into Atlanta to face the Falcons in Prime Time.  Matt Ryan and the Falcons were victorious and made a statement.  The Falcons are likely back to the form they were in a couple of years ago.  Matt Ryan led his team to the win with excellent passing.  Ryan had 219 yards passing and had 2 touchdowns.  Manning on the other hand had a rough night,  throwing only 1 TD pass and throwing for 3 interceptions.  The Falcons scored quickly and went into halftime with a 20-7 lead.  In the 3rd quarter the Falcons scored 7 points while the Broncos had 0.  In the 4th quarter Manning tried to lead his team to the comeback victory as his brother Eli did on Sunday but could not pull it off.  The Broncos were able to score only 14 points in the final quarter.  The final score was 27-21 in favor of the Falcons.  It was an interesting match up with and even more interesting outcome.  The Falcons are going to be a strong team for their NFC foes to compete with this season.

Top 3 Stories From Week 3 Of College Football

Week 3 of NCAA action has come to a close. It was the most eventful week of the season thus far. There were a few ranked teams that were dethroned, many of which by other ranked teams. This was also the toughest week to narrow down all of the excitement into 3 stories. So let’s take a look at 2centsworthofsports.com’s top 3 stories.

#21 STANFORD UPSETS #2USC

Stanford Stadium was rocking as #21 Stanford Cardinals played host to #2 USC Trojans. Stanford has gotten the best of USC in the last three years, but those were teams led by now NFL rookie Andrew Luck. It was unknown if Stanford could keep the streak alive on Saturday night. The Cardinals proved they still have USC’s number in a 21-14 win over the Trojans. Cardinals running back Stepfan Taylor had a great performance, rushing for 153 yards and scoring 2 touchdowns. Stanford’s Quarterback Josh Nunes threw the game winning 37-yard TD pass to Zach Ertz with 11:10 remaining in the final quarter. With this win Standford moves to 3-0 for the season while USC now has a 2-1 record. USC is bowl eligible for the first time in 2 years and will now need to fight if they want to make it to the National Championship this year.

PITT SHOCKS #13 VIRGINIA TECH

Pitt came out strong on Saturday against #13 Virginia Tech. Pitt scored 14 unanswered points on Tech in the 1st quarter and led the game at halftime by a score of 21-3. Pitt won the game 35-14 and received strong performances from QB Tino Sunseri and running back Ray Graham. Sunseri was 19-28 passing and threw for283 yards with 3 touchdown passes and only 1 interception. Graham rushed for 94 yards and had 2 touchdowns. It was another story for the Hokies who struggled early on defense and their offense could not bring them back into the game. Hokies QB Logan Thomas was 14-31 and threw 3 interceptions. This win will likely put Pitt in the top 25 ranking and move the Hokies into the back of the top 25.

ARKANSAS DESTROYED BY #1 ALABAMA AT HOME

Arkansas went into last week ranked #8 and were upset by LA Monroe. That loss had the Razor Backs plunge out of the top 25 rankings. This game was expected to be tough for Arkansas but not a complete blow out. The Tide beat the living crap out of the Razorbacks winning the game 52-0. Alabama’s leading scorer was running back Eddie Lacy who rushed for 3 touchdowns. The Razorbacks did not have one single decent performance. Their leading rusher in the game was Johnathan Williams only ran for 6 yards. Their leading receivers were Chris Gragg and Austin Tate who only had 19 yards receiving a piece. The Razor back had high hopes for the season which have been completely crushed in Weeks 2 and 3. It will be a long season for the Razorbacks this year.

Top 3 Stories From Week 1 Of The NFL

The 2012 season is out of the gates and charging hard into the Fall.  As anticipated the first week of NFL action brought much excitement and enjoyment as America’s number 1 sport began its new season.  There were many potential story lines heading into week 1.  Here are 2centsworthofsports.com’s Top 3 stories that developed on Sunday.

RG 3 Impresses In Rookie Debut

Robert Griffin III made his highly anticipated debut on Sunday in New Orleans against the Saints.  Much like Cam Newton in his rookie season last year,  RG3 rose to the occasion.  Griffin lead the Redskins to a win over the Saints by a score of 40-32.  More impressive than the victory were Griffin’s stats.  Griffin was 19-26 with 320 yards passing, 42 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns.  Griffin completed his first 7  passes for over 123 yards.  The most exciting play came in the 1st quarter when Griffin connected with Wide Receiver Pierre Garcon for an 88 yard touchdown pass.  That TD pass would be Griffins first in the NFL and is a hell of a way to start a career.  A statement was made on Sunday, Griffin is as good as we thought he would be and he makes the Redskins a legitimate threat.

Peyton Manning Showed No Signs Of Rust In His Broncos Debut

One of the first major NFL stories of the past off season was where would Peyton Manning land in free agency.  The answer was Denver but that left a question remaining, how would he perform?  Manning sat out the entire 2011 season after having undergone neck surgery.  On Sunday night in Prime Time, Manning and the Broncos hosted the Pittsburgh Steelers.  Manning was back to his usual form going 19-26 with 253 yards passing and 2 touchdown passes.  The Broncos beat the Steelers 31-19 in the first game of the season.  Manning showed how ready he was to be back in football.  It is safe to say he will continue to be one of the best QB’s in the league this season.

#1 Pick Andrew Luck Has A Rough Debut In Chicago

The first overall pick in April’s Draft, Andrew Luck took to the field with his Colts to face the Chicago Bears.  Luck came out of college with the same expectations that he is NFL ready.  He may very well be but Sunday did not treat Luck very well.  The Colts were defeated by the Bears by a score of 41-21.  Luck was 25-43 passing with 309 yards passing, 9 yards rushing, 1 touchdown and threw for 3 interceptions.  The Bears defense was too much for the Colts line who just did not give Luck enough time to be comfortable.  Luck’s 3 interceptions show he was not mentally ready for this game.  However his other stats look promising.  The problem for Luck this season will be that the Colts have not provided him with the best supporting cast.  Week 2 will be a good opportunity to see how Luck can recover from a tough loss and move forward.