Recent Comments by grum@work

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Third Round

Golden State in 5 +1
Points: Curry +1
Rebounds: Aldridge

Cleveland in 4
Points: James
Rebounds: Thompson

The conference finals schedule is ridiculous. Cleveland is at a disadvantage because their opponents are playing a long series. Like rcade says, they could stomp the other East team in 4 straight and still end up with less time to rest for the finals if the GS/SAS go 6 games.

Edit: Why does NBA.com say that the third game for GS/SAS isn't until next Saturday?! Maybe that's to balance out the early lead in games played (vs the East)?

posted by grum@work at 06:33 PM on May 13

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

The most inappropriate organ music I have ever heard. (Warning: blood)

posted by grum@work at 01:09 AM on May 13

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em: Third Round

Nashville in 7: +1
Points: Getzlaf
Save%: Rinne

Pittsburgh in 7:
Points: Crosby
Save%: Anderson

posted by grum@work at 01:16 PM on May 12

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

I'm not sure when I'll be available this weekend, so my picks as well:

Nashville in 7
Pittsburgh in 7

posted by grum@work at 12:12 AM on May 12

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

 📂 National Hockey League 
  └📁 Washington Capitals 
   └📁 Ovechkin era 
    └📁 Semi-final appearances 
     └⚠️ Folder is empty

posted by grum@work at 10:23 AM on May 11

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Because nothing happens in sports if it isn't immediately turned into a meme-able image/video.

posted by grum@work at 10:56 PM on May 10

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Kevin Pillar doing Kevin Pillar things again, and wowing the opposing team's announcer.

posted by grum@work at 10:12 AM on May 09

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

NHL.com reporter roasts ESPN when it looks like they want to use his content for their network.

ESPN Assignment Desk: Hello, can you follow us so that we can send you a DM?

Arpon Basu: I followed but if it's to ask permission to use content, don't bother. The answer is no. This is why you should have reporters.

posted by grum@work at 10:56 PM on May 08

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

That may have been an ironic use of it. That's the common retort in the Jays sub-Reddit when they lose another game.

To be fair, when two of your starting pitchers (20 game winner and the AL ERA leader), your perennial-MVP third baseman, and your all-star-level shortstop have been out of action for most of the season, it does make it hard to be competitive.

posted by grum@work at 01:22 AM on May 07

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Now, for something completely different:

Aaron Judge is a very strong young man.

posted by grum@work at 08:02 PM on May 02

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Plus, Fenway Park is private property, yes? If so, then I don't think the racist goons are covered by the 1st Amendment in this case.

Oh, absolutely. I just don't think a private establishment can FINE someone on their premises for being racist, and I'm pretty sure that the government can't fine the person for swearing on private property, so that's why I said the idea of fining someone would be a non-starter.

posted by grum@work at 08:00 PM on May 02

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Fining someone for saying racist slurs is just ASKING for the ACLU to come down on you hard.

This isn't "shouting fire in a theatre". This is just expressing abhorrent ideas out loud, and I'm pretty sure the best you could hope for would be to toss someone from the ballpark (like you could do with any person you don't want in there for any reason).

posted by grum@work at 03:36 PM on May 02

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

I think the way to handle racist fans is to ban them for life, and if they got the tickets from somebody else ban that person as well.

I like the idea of banning people from the stadium, but that's going to make the security theatre at stadiums take twice as long as they have to do face recognition on everyone that enters.

There is also no way that MLB will implement the "ticket owner" ban idea, as that would scare away the market to sell tickets on the MLB-approved StubHub, thus taking that extra coin from the MLB/team pockets.

Public shaming, plus the knowledge that some players might actively avoid signing with a team because of their fans, is the only hope that you'll see any change.

posted by grum@work at 01:58 PM on May 02

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

A better arm than I ever had, regardless of my fitness level or age.

posted by grum@work at 01:37 PM on May 01

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

The secret seems to be that you have Taylor Hall on your team. If that's your team, then they are now 4-for-7 in winning the NHL draft lottery.

posted by grum@work at 04:19 PM on April 30

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Second Round

Boston in 7 - I.Thomas
Cleveland in 7 - L.James +1 +1
San Antonio in 5 - K.Leonard +1
Golden State in 4 - S.Curry +2

posted by grum@work at 01:18 AM on April 30

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

They've since fixed the page.

Before, it only showed four games for the Raps/Cavs, but seven games for the Spurs/Rockets.

posted by grum@work at 09:22 AM on April 29

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

These Blue Jays are just spectacularly terrible this year.

The worst part is that they've only had two blowout losses this year. Everything else seems to be either losing in extra innings, or blowing a chance to tie it in the 8th/9th inning with base runners on and down by a couple of runs.

Now, they are playing without perennial MVP candidate Josh Donaldson, starting shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, and their top two pitchers from last year (finishing 6th/7th in Cy Young voting), Aaron Sanchez, and J.A. Happ, so I'm not surprised they are losing more than they are winning...

But still, man. This is just painful.

And with the Raptors surely to be bounced quickly by the Cavs, that means the Jays won't have anything to hide behind for the rest of the season.

Edit: And if you think I'm being negative about the Raptors chances, please observe that NBA.com doesn't even bother trying to list the "if necessary" Games 5/6/7 of the series on their schedules (but do so for the Rockets/Spurs series).

posted by grum@work at 01:04 AM on April 29

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Dead grandmas, tiny babies...how will the 2018 draft class top these stage props next year?

posted by grum@work at 03:44 PM on April 28

Joey Barton in trouble - again

Other gamblers can't see what he's doing with his bets unless he tells them, so signalling can't be the reason.

Somebody has to know he's made those bets, otherwise they can't be made. Either it's someone at the betting firm, or the person he asks to make them for him...

posted by grum@work at 08:18 AM on April 28

Joey Barton in trouble - again

The problem with even small bets AGAINST his own team is that it could be used as a signal to other gamblers that something isn't right. Maybe he knows someone is going to fix the match. Maybe he knows that someone is hiding an injury. Maybe he knows that the ref is in on it.

posted by grum@work at 12:44 AM on April 28

MLB *Play of the Year* is pretty much locked up by Chris Coghlan after this bit of insanity.

I'm pretty sure Coghlan would have been okay to bowl over Molina.

- Coghlan is not allowed to go out of his way to make contact. He can't go outside his direct line to the plate to initiate contact. In this case, running into Molina wouldn't be going outside the direct line.

- Molina is not allowed to set up in the path of the runner without the ball. However, in this case, he was attempting to field the ball and is therefore allowed to be in the path of the runner. He did not initially set up in the path, but had to get to that point because the throw tailed up the line.

- Once Molina has the ball in his glove, Coghlan pretty much has no choice but to go into (or over) Molina. His momentum and direct line to the base pretty much commits him to this point, and nobody (catcher or runner) has broken any rules. A collision is pretty much expected in this kind of case.

Side note: Replays from the St. Louis broadcast show that Coghlan DID step on third base, despite my initial concern a few comments up.

posted by grum@work at 12:11 PM on April 26

MLB *Play of the Year* is pretty much locked up by Chris Coghlan after this bit of insanity.

If you watch one of the replays, it sure does look like Coghlan misses touching 3rd base, but the Cardinals were so confused by the play at home that no one thought to make an appeal play.

posted by grum@work at 12:30 AM on April 26

MLB *Play of the Year* is pretty much locked up by Chris Coghlan after this bit of insanity.

I like how the announcers still use the word "slide"...

posted by grum@work at 12:11 AM on April 26

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em: Second Round

Fixed it:

St. Louis in 6 - Tarasenko

Edmonton in 7 - McJesus...uh...McDavid

New York in 6 - Karlsson +1

Pittsburgh in 6 - Crosby +1

posted by grum@work at 02:10 PM on April 25

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Commentator-free video of the end of the Maple Leafs season.

The "Go Leafs Go" chant after the Capitals score the OT goal is amazing, as is the big send off by the fans when the Leafs raise their sticks before leaving the ice.

posted by grum@work at 01:40 PM on April 25

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

People that have gone to Leafs/Raptors games since the ACC was built say it has NEVER been louder than when this happened:

*sigh*

Can't wait until October...

posted by grum@work at 11:31 AM on April 25

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

That's one of the reasons why I believe the Steriod Era hurt so much -- the statistical history of baseball, which is such an important part of the game, was sullied.

As opposed to the "Greenie Era", or the even better "Segregated Era" of baseball. Those statistics are pristine and holy, like the "Re-used Dead Ball Era', and the "50' Pitching Distance Era".

posted by grum@work at 08:35 PM on April 24

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

You gotta be happy after that final Matthews goal. His hands are incredibly fast.

I think three of his goals were the "quick reaction" type, where the puck was lying there and he was able to shoot/flip/slide it into the net before anyone else could react.

I was skeptical before the World Cup on just HOW good Matthews really was, but I'm convinced. He's the real deal and could be the start of something big in Toronto (like what happened in Chicago).

posted by grum@work at 05:18 PM on April 24

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Oh, and if the Capitals play like this against the Penguins, Pittsburgh is going to stomp them pretty hard.

posted by grum@work at 10:27 PM on April 23

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

The Leafs season ended like most of their games did early on...a blown third period lead and a loss in extra time.

That said, I ain't even mad.

I didn't think they'd make the playoffs.

I didn't (realistically, despite my bravado in the NHL pick-em) think they'd be all that competitive against the MUCH better Capitals.

To get the series to six games, and to play FIVE of them in overtime? That's crazy.

The best part is that when the Leafs were leaving the ice Auston Matthews had an angry look on his face. He wasn't content with just getting there. He wants to win.

Given how Matthews, Nylander, Kapenen, Andersen, and Kadri played this series, I like their chances next year.

posted by grum@work at 10:22 PM on April 23

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

You can cross off anyone that has any Penguins, Blue Jackets, Flames, Ducks, Hawks, or Predators that aren't Malkin, Crosby, or Kessel.

posted by grum@work at 10:18 PM on April 21

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Oh lordy.

Duncan Keith blows up Viktor Arvidsson.

posted by grum@work at 10:30 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

MLB's new baseball magnet: Josh Harrison

posted by grum@work at 09:02 AM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Attention all baseball fans!

CB Bucknor gave a demonstration tonight (in the Nationals/Braves game) of what would happen if an umpire closed his eyes on every pitch and just guessed (by sound) if it was a ball or a strike.

From Twitter: Seven individual calls by CB Bucknor that home plate umpires across the league make "0%" of the time.

One

Two

Three

Four

Five

Six

Seven

Here is a map of every called pitch (no swings). Red ones are called strikes (they should be inside the boxes), green ones are called balls (they should be outside the boxes).

Jason Werth struck out in this at-bat without swinging his bat even once.

This was called a "foul-tip" by Bucknor.

The winning team's radio play-by-play guy tears into Bucknor's calling ability.

posted by grum@work at 12:19 AM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Listen, I've seen some amazing goals scored by some great players, but this one by Radulov is next-level insane.

Undressing a HOF-bound goalie, with one hand, while holding off a defender with the other...come on. If someone did that in NHL'17, I'd be pissed that they used a cheat code against me.

posted by grum@work at 11:14 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Today

CLE in 5 - LeBron +1 +1
TOR in 6 - Derozan +2
SAS in 5 - Kawhi +1 +1
LAC in 5 - Hayward
WAS in 4 - Wall +1 +1
GSW in 4 - Curry +2 +1
BOS in 4 - Thomas +1 +1
HOU in 6 - Westbrook +1 +1

posted by grum@work at 12:16 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Tonight

Ottawa in 7 +1

Pittsburgh in 5 +2

Edmonton in 6 +2

Montreal in 5

St. Louis in 7 +1

Toronto in 7

Calgary in 6

Chicago in 4

Points: Matthews +1

I BE-LEAF!

posted by grum@work at 02:21 PM on April 12

What if Barry Bonds had played without a bat?

There are very few writers on the internet that I'd pay money to read, but if Jon Bois said "I'm going solo and producing a new article/video every week." I'd pony up the money pretty quickly.

The closest I've come to passing out from laughter was reading a bunch of his "Breaking Madden" (and other video game articles) in a row.

posted by grum@work at 10:29 PM on April 11

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

That's the most balkingest balk that ever balked.

posted by grum@work at 09:19 PM on April 09

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

An American crowd chanting "SER-GI-O!"?

It sounded great.

posted by grum@work at 07:39 PM on April 09

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Getting to the playoffs was NOT expected this season, especially since they blew 3rd period leads in 4 of their first 5 games of the season.

Of course, Matthews scoring 40 goals as a rookie was also not expected, as well as having three rookies score over 60 points (Matthews, Marner, Nylander).

Naturally, the dream scenario* is that Toronto gets at least a point in the final game and then faces Ottawa in the first round.

Otherwise they will have to face the Capitals steamroller in the first round.

* A dream scenario four ways:

  1. Toronto faces a team they've beaten 4 straight times in the playoffs.
  2. Ottawa gets a chance to redeem themselves against a fresh-faced-untested squad, thus ending their playoff nightmares.
  3. Sportsnet gets a ratings bonanza by having the two Ontario teams with history play each other.
  4. If Toronto should prevail, then there opens up the possibility of them facing the Montreal Canadiens in the next round of the playoffs, thus creating a possible 100% ratings on Canadian television...

    posted by grum@work at 09:28 AM on April 09

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

"Nice home run, son!"

"Thanks, daddy!"

Aaron Judge (6'7") greets teammate Ronald Torreyes (5'8") at home plate.

posted by grum@work at 01:24 PM on April 05

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

The universe does not like Stephen Piscotty.

Bonus: Video done with Scott Sterling commentary.

posted by grum@work at 10:38 AM on April 05

Bruce Bochy takes medical leave, Barry Bonds interim manager for San Francisco Giants

Chronicle beat reporter Daryl Polsafio reports that:

Bochy's medical leave of absence is so he may be tested for "early onset dementia". The rumours are that Giants officials became worried when Bochy insisted in multiple interviews and discussions that "last year's bullpen wasn't that bad", so they confronted Bochy directly and requested he be tested.

The columnist, April Slaydofo, adds:

When asked about managing the team, Bonds says that he'll be a hands-off manager, but he will insist that everyone take the health supplements provided before each game by the team's new dietician and trainer, Greg Anderson.

posted by grum@work at 01:41 AM on April 01

Bruce Bochy takes medical leave, Barry Bonds interim manager for San Francisco Giants

It looks like my link is messed up in the post title. I guess there is a bad character in the web page, or I pasted it incorrectly, but it's chopped off the end of it. I'm not sure how to fix it.

posted by grum@work at 01:38 AM on April 01

World Cup 2026: Fifa reveals allocation for 48-team tournament

Canada's still probably not going to make the World Cup again, right?

*sigh*

posted by grum@work at 11:52 AM on March 31

NFL team owners approve Raiders' move to Vegas

Toronto supports the Leafs, any other sports team is simply noise there.

When the Leafs stunk for the last decade, the Blue Jays, Raptors and TFC capitalized for a couple of seasons. They established themselves as teams to cheer for for the younger fans.

Lots of kids support the Raptors instead of the Leafs.
Lots of immigrant kids (from Europe) support TFC instead of the Leafs.
Lots of fans in general supported the 2015 resurgence and 2016 repeat of the Blue Jays (especially with the heavy marketing by the cable giant Rogers).

That said, 2017 might be the last chance for the three other teams to establish themselves before the Leafs junior juggernauts really take hold.

Of course, it's a magical time in Toronto right now (and the past 12 months).

Leafs - young, exciting, and might make the playoffs (and might even play their favourite whipping boys, the Senators, in the first round)

Raptors - made it to the ECF, and (assuming Lowry is healthy) look real strong to take another long run in the playoffs

Blue Jays - back-to-back runs to the ALCS

TFC - lost the title in a shootout (but only after humiliating NY and their arch-rivals, Montreal).

So yes, back in the day the Leafs were the dominant sports team in Toronto, and if the win a round of the playoffs this year they might leap back on top of the heap, but the other teams aren't "noise" right now.

posted by grum@work at 01:10 AM on March 30

NFL team owners approve Raiders' move to Vegas

Also increases the leverage for any other franchise seeking public money.

I'm not so sure about that.

Yes, they've increased the threat level of "Maybe we'll move if we don't get what we want!" by having examples of teams actually doing it, but they've taken away one of the prime "threat locations".

By moving teams to Los Angeles and Las Vegas, they've removed two prime threats to existing cities keeping their teams.

What (legitimate) cities does that leave?

Portland?
A third Texas team?
Back to St. Louis?

None of them held the possibility of Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

posted by grum@work at 03:18 PM on March 29

NFL team owners approve Raiders' move to Vegas

ic23b: I think you misread jjzucal's quote. He said "empty seats in Oakland", not Las Vegas.

posted by grum@work at 07:29 PM on March 27

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

NHL goals in a season - 92 by Gretzky - nobody has come close in 35 years and the game is different now

Brett Hull scored 228 goals in 231 games over the span of 3 seasons (1989-90 to 1991-92), including an 86 goal season (in only 78 games).

At his peak (he was 25 in the first of those three seasons), The Golden Brett was the one that might have had a chance. He had the skill and the league was still in the format that allowed for crazy scoring like that.

If Brett had started his career (and peaked) 6 years earlier (during mid-80s), I think he has a real shot at beating that record.

If you use the statistic of "Adjusted Goals" (which takes into account roster size, games in a season, and league scoring), Hulls 1990-91 season (when he scored 86 real goals) is considered the largest "adjusted goals" season in NHL history (78). Gretzky's 92 goals comes out as 69.

The next highest "adjusted goals" season in NHL history was in 2007-08. It was Ovechkin's 65 goal season, which translated into 72 "adjusted goals" (because of the low scoring environment he did it in).

The really interesting part is that when you tally "adjusted goals" for an entire career, the league leader is...Gordie Howe (925). Second place is...Jaromir Jagr (840). Gretzky comes in third with 758.

posted by grum@work at 01:26 AM on March 24

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

I would think that Fernando Tatis' 2 grand slams (and the subsequent 8 RBI) in one inning was pretty untouchable...

The Tatis thing is like Johnny Vander Meer throwing consecutive no-hitters.

Maybe, in a blue moon, someone might match the record, but it's virtually impossible to ever break it.

posted by grum@work at 01:07 AM on March 24

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

The Maple Leafs almost burned themselves last night, but got lucky.

While ahead by only a goal, the Leafs' Roman Polak drew a 5-minute penalty (and game misconduct) for boarding. Instead of putting another player in the box immediately, Leafs coach Mike Babcock elected to not put someone in right away, and was planning to put in a player at the first whistle during the penalty kill (which is an option).

However, there never WAS a whistle during the power play! After the five minutes were up, there was no player in the penalty box, so the Leafs had to remain shorthanded until the next whistle! They could not bring a player onto the ice from the bench.

The Blue Jackets were on the power play for almost SEVEN MINUTES. The Leafs tried to ice the puck, but being short handed meant that didn't stop the play!

Eventually, Dan Boyle (the veteran on the Leafs) got control of the puck at his blue line, skated towards centre, and then flipped it into the Blue Jackets bench. Because it did not go over the glass, it was not a delay of game penalty, and the Leafs could finally put a 5th skater on the ice.

Mike Babcock was seen saying "I'm sorry. My fault. I'm sorry." to his team during the commercial break and said after the game:

"That will never happen in my lifetime again. I can tell you that. I'll never wait to put a guy in."

The Leafs won the game 5-2.

posted by grum@work at 11:36 AM on March 23

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Barring a change on how they count "wins" in baseball, Cy Young's 511 wins seems impossible at this time.

posted by grum@work at 10:50 AM on March 23

Chicago Fire Sign Bastian Schweinsteiger

long travel to away games

So, for fun, I mapped out the travel distances for the Chicago Fire this season:

For all their away games listed on their 2017 schedule that aren't pre-season matches, they would have to travel 28,564 miles (round trip, as the crow flies, calculated here). That's for 17 listed away games, on in the US and Canada, and does not include any possible playoff matches or other currently unscheduled matches (other Cups/Leagues?).

And, in turn, mapped out the travel distances for Manchester United this season:

For all their away games listed on their 2016-17 schedule (non-exhibition, August 2016 to May 2017), they would have to travel 17,924 miles (round trip, as the crow flies, calculated here). That's for 29 listed away games, in the UK, Russia, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Turkey, and Ukraine. It does not include any other unscheduled cup/league matches to be determined.

The two longest trips were by ManU to Zorya Luhansk (1812 miles) and FC Rostov (1944 miles). The longest trip for Chicago was to Portland (1756 miles) or LA (1744 miles) (it could be either depending on airport locations and such).

Chicago's shortest travel distance was two matches in Columbus (276 miles). ManU's shortest travel distance (other than their ManCity derby of 0 miles) is Brunley (21 miles).

Chicago had no one-way travel under 200 miles. ManU had almost 80% of their matches within 200 miles of their home, and almost 50% of their matches had less than 105 miles in one-way travel.

One major difference is that imagine most of the travel for ManU to other UK locations would be by train or bus.

posted by grum@work at 01:50 PM on March 22

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The full plate appearance between Wladimir Balentien and Edwin Diaz, from last night's WBC semi-final game.

Even if the American fans and/or players don't get excited about the WBC, it seems like lots of players from around the world sure seem to care.

posted by grum@work at 11:58 AM on March 21

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Oh man, not you too, Shaq!

posted by grum@work at 11:06 PM on March 19

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

I'm not sure there is any incentive you can offer a genuine contender (Cavs, GS, Spurs) to keep their stars on the court if the team thinks their stars could use a night off.

I have no problem with resting stars.

I have a REAL problem if you rest ALL of the stars at once (if I was a paying customer of a team with stars), especially on the road (where a fan has a limited chance of seeing these stars in the first place).

Like you said, it's virtually impossible to enforce this kind of rule without some weird backlash/interpretation, but the NBA can't be happy with what happened with the Spurs/Warriors.

posted by grum@work at 10:39 PM on March 19

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

There has to be something wrong with the third base coach running down the line in between the runner and the player with the ball at third base.

If I was the guy with the ball (and realized that no one was going to cover home in time), I would have thrown the ball AT the third base coach and try to get an "interference" call from the ump for the automatic out.

posted by grum@work at 09:53 AM on March 16

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Celebrating before you finish making the play?

That's a-Baez-ing!

Side note:

Nelson Cruz, what the hell were you thinking? Did you forget that you are NOT a base stealer? I'm hoping that was some sort of blown hit-and-run play, but I doubt it with Adrian Beltre at the dish with two outs and down by two runs. But why steal there with Yadier Molina behind the plate?

posted by grum@work at 04:48 PM on March 15