Hump Day Thoughts on Sports & Stuff – 7/1/15

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Hey all, Steve here. I haven’t done a Hump Day article for a few weeks so I thought it might be time to grace you with one. We are at such a great point of the year for sports. Baseball is in mid-season with the All-Star break right around the corner and the trade deadline following soon after. NBA free agency starts today – the time of year when players and execs earn a ton of frequent flyer miles. The countdown to the NFL season is underway – 10 Sundays to go for the preseason (or something like that). NHL…no. This year we have the Women’s World Cup and the United States is now in the Finals! Oh and today is also Bobby Bonilla’s annual payday from the Mets for $1.2 million. Whatever. It’s not my money. Let’s get to it:

NBA Free Agency

This is obviously the big story of the day. The start of NBA Free Agency. It has been the craziest time of the year in the NBA ever since 2010 when the big 3 came together in Miami. The big story is that, for the first time in a long time, both the Lakers and the Knicks have been money to spend. That doesn’t mean they will get any of the big ticket free agents. Their futures do look promising – they both picked in the lottery in the draft and they both have a ton of money to spend this year and next. This is going to be a major test for Phil Jackson. He pulled off some decent trades last year to rid the team of a few contracts and now here they are, in desperate need to turn the franchise around (again) and appease their fans.

Here is what we know so far:

Kevin Love is staying with the Cavs.

Jimmy Butler is staying with the Bulls.

The Spurs have traded Tiago Splitter to the Hawks to free up some space (Aldridge?).

Danny Green is staying with the Spurs.

Anthony Davis is a $140 million man.

Goran Dragic is staying with the Heat.

Adrian Wojnarowski is the man.

Kawhi Leonard is staying with the Spurs.

LaMarcus Aldridge does NOT want to play with Kobe Bryant.

Paul Millsap is staying with the Hawks.

Tyson Chandler is leaving Dallas again – this time heading to the Suns.

Paul Pierce his going where I thought he was going last year – to the Clippers.

Iman Shumpert is staying with the Cavs.

More to come…just not from the Knicks or Lakers.

Reviewing my pre-season Baseball picks

Hey it is July 1st, so let’s see how I am looking on my pre-season predictions:

AL East:

Prediction: Red Sox

Actual: Orioles

Assessment

Come on. The Red Sox offense was supposed to carry them this season. The problem is that the glaring hole that is their pitching has just been too much for them to overcome. Add to that their injury problems as well as the underperforming free agents they brought in and they have turned Steve into a bad prognosticator.  

AL Central:

Prediction: Indians

Actual: Royals

Assessment

This is a case of not giving the defending American League Champs the credit they deserve. A lot of people had the Indians not only winning the division, but making it to the World Series. Now, it is still early, but the Indians are 10 games out of first place and just like the Red Sox, they are making me look pretty bad!

AL West:

Prediction: Mariners

Actual: Astros

Assessment

Ok, who the hell predicted the Astros would be doing this well?!?! This one is not my fault. Robinson Cano has turned into a singles hitter and Nelson Cruz has cooled off considerably. They brought in Mark Trumbo and he isn’t even hitting his own weight. The Mariners currently sit 9.5 games out of first place.

AL Wild Cards:

Predictions: Angels, Tigers

Actual: Rays, Yankees

Assessment

Ok, so the Wild Cards can get a bit dicey, but here goes nothing. I picked the Angels and the Tigers and they are both within 1.5 games of the Wild Card spots. This is one that will need to wait for later in the season for a proper assessment. I don’t think the Yankees will be there in the end and why haven’t I learned my lesson of NEVER counting the Rays out. Their pitching has been outstanding. That is the key.

NL East:

Prediction: Nationals

Actual: Nationals

Assessment

I don’t like it, but so far I am right on with this pick.

NL Central:

Prediction: Cardinals

Actual: Cardinals

Assessment

You can NEVER go wrong with the Cardinals. Never. It doesn’t matter who they throw out there, they will be in first place and they will make noise in the playoffs.

NL West:

Prediction: Dodgers

Actual: Dodgers

Assessment

Even though Kershaw hasn’t been himself this year, the Dodgers are right where I thought they would be. The Giants are right on their tails, so this could swing in any direction.

NL Wild Cards:

Predictions: Mets, Cubs

Actual: Giants, Cubs

Assessment

So I am 1 for 2 on the NL Wild Card so far, but just like the AL Wild Card, this is WAYYYY too early to even discuss. If the Mets would just get off their asses and get a bat or 2, there really is no doubt in my mind that they will win AT LEAST a wild card birth. Look at that pitching. It is absurd. The problem is I can randomly choose 8 other guys from the 7 train and they will score more runs than they can right now. I am also 4 for 5 in the NL…whatever.

That’s all for now people. Hope you enjoyed. See ya next time! Oh and by the way, the Mets have score exactly 0 runs so far in this series against the Cubs. I have watched all 16 innings. What is wrong with me…