Wednesday, March 29, 2006
That's just one of several interesting baseball betting opportunities offered at the popular Las Vegas venue. The Palms has the usual bill of fare with odds on the World Series and the pennant and division races. But Baccellieri has also posted odds on which slugger will hit the most home runs and which pitcher will have the most victories.
The half-season win props offer head-to-head matchups between teams playing in the same city, as well as traditional rivalries.
One of the most popular props figures to be the one that features the fiercest rivals of them all, the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox. Yankees fans have to lay three games and $1.25 to win $1.00 if they think their team is going to have a better record than the Red Sox at the All-Star break.
The Bronx Bombers are a bigger favorite over the Mets, the other guys in the Big Apple. One has to lay 3 1/2 games and $1.15 to win $1.00 to wager on the Yankees having more wins at intermission than the Mets.
The Chicago White Sox have received a lot of attention from bettors in their matchup against their cross-town rivals the Cubs. The defending champs opened at minus -4 (minus $1.20) over their Wrigley Field neighbors. However,that number has moved to $1.35.
The Cubs also aren't getting much respect against St. Louis. The Cardinals hit the board at minus -4 (minus $1.10) and they are now listed at $1.25.
There are 26 different matchup opportunities for this particular prop, including the Dodgers/Angels, Astros/Rangers, Angels/ White Sox and Giants/A's.
Though Atlanta's Andruw Jones led the majors last season with 51 home runs, the Braves slugger isn't favored to defend his title in Baccellieri's book. That honor goes to Alex Rodriguez of the Yankees.
Rodriguez, who led the American League last season with 48 long flies, hit the board as co-favorite with St. Louis slugger Albert Pujols at 7/1. Pujols' odds have been increased to 10/1 to attract action, while the odds on Rodriguez have dropped to 4/1.
The top-10 home run hitters last season are all back at the top of the list in 2006. They are joined this year by Barry Bonds and Jim Thome, who both spent the better part of last year on the sidelines. The controversial Bonds opened at 12/1, but is currently 16/1. Thome, peddled to the White Sox this winter, is available at 18/1.
Mark Teixeria of Texas (12/1 down to 9/1), David Ortiz of Boston (16/1 to 8/1), Adam Dunn of Cincinnati (18/1 to 12/1) and Derek Lee of the Cubs (25/1 to 15/1) have attracted a good deal of action. Cincinnati's Ken Griffey, Jr. has also been a popular play, dropping from 35/1 to 22/1.
Toronto's Roy Halladay is the favorite at The Palms to finish the season with the most victories. The Jays ace was headed for a Cy Young caliber season in 2005 until he was sidelined with an injury. Halladay opened at 12/1 and is currently listed at 13/2.
Minnesota's Johan Santana and Pedro Martinez of the Mets opened as co-favorites at 8/1, but both are currently available at 10/1. Houston's Roy Oswalt is the second choice in the betting, dropping from 10/1 to 8/1.
Chris Carpenter was second behind Willis last year with 21 wins, and early bird bettors are expecting more of the same. The St. Louis ace hit the board at 20/1, but that quickly dropped to 10/1. Carlos Zambrano of the Cubs, who pitched better last season than his 14-6 record indicates, went from 22/1 to 12/1.
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
What do you think about that?"
The doctor considers this for a moment, then says, "Well, let me tell you a story. I know a guy who’s an avid hunter. He never misses a season. But, one day he’s in a bit of a hurry and he accidentally grabs his umbrella instead of his gun. So he’s walking in the woods near a creek and suddenly spots a beaver in some bush in front of him. He raises up his umbrella, points it at the beaver and squeezes the handle...
*BAM* The beaver drops dead in front of him." "That’s impossible!" said the old man in disbelief, "Someone else must have shot that beaver."
Friday, March 24, 2006
I must tell the readers I’m pretty much a jerk. I mean I hate everyone. You name it I hate. The only saving grace in my life is my dog otherwise I think I would be dating Bubba in cell block D and selling smokes for protection.
Stepping out of myself onto a metaphysical state I have come to appreciate kids more and more these days. I mean, I must have some kids around somewhere in the world. I just assume they will be contacting me when they turn 18 and are looking for money.
My recent foray into the lighter side of humanity is the fact that one friend just recently had a baby girl who is way cuter than my friend (who is famous for his gigantic sack. I’ll let the readers visualize this image). Thanks God genetics is a mad scientist, though his mom is quite a catch so that might explain the cutest of the little girl.
My recent friend’s ability to spawn and my recent viewing of 6 year olds play soccer across my apartment has made me less cynical towards life and sports in recent days. Though I am starting to warm to kids I do like playing with them but when the big hand hit the 12 on the clock I go home.
Amidst all this cuteness arises the most ugly aspect of sports. The sports parent. Nothing worse than middle aged men living vicariously through there children. The saddest thing in the world is trying to live through your child vicariously with your shattered expectation draped upon them. I mean less than 1% of the people ever make it to the pros. Come on parents you really think you have a shot. If you were not recruited by the universities and play on some beer league team as a means of sport glory; get a life.
The world is full aware of these people as they grow up. For example.
Theron Fleury Barry Bonds
Terral OwensKenny Rogers
For the love of god don’t let your kids grow up to be Tanya Harding unless you want you sons and daughter to dance on a pole for a living.
Aside from the pushy parents and very hot soccer moms (or as I like to call them yummy mummies) there is a true meaning of sport: The Children. Yes the children are our future; corny as it seems watching 6 year old kids play any sports can warm the cockles of even the hardest men.
I must have watched those kids play for over an hour. No systems, no technique, no plans or schemes, just a bunch of midgets following a soccer ball around with the exception of that one boy picking flowers, his nose and dancing (now that’s multi tasking). I think I might have spotted the next Rudi Gulindi.
The purest sense of sports is having fun without the media, criticism or fan backlash. No one is going to yell at the kid for picking his nose because that’s the way he plays. He is not worried about the fans, parents or coaches. He is having fun without monetary compensation.
Watching, wagering and critiquing sports have made the world into one big asshole, with opinion which may or not be valid. I say no profession athlete should get paid to play sports which would only create players that play for the love of the game. Of course this would be the best case scenario for a utopian world and I know for sure that the world is full of losers living vicariously through their children. Pushing them to play a game they no longer love.
I know my friend will be better parent than that; he has to be since his really had no sports expectations to begin with. Though a good soccer player I’m and sure he won’t push his kid like some of the parents we see on TV but in event he is I have child services on speed dial.
So I say to all of the professional athletes, Sunday warriors, and Olympics athletes;
Pick your nose like nobody’s there cause that what I will pay to see.
Thursday, March 23, 2006
Thursday March 23rd 2006
The Vancouver Canucks enter into this home contest having only scored more than 3 goals two times in their 11 times to the ice and have failed to eclipse the total in 9 of those contests ! The Edmonton Oilers have not scored more than 3 goals in their L/11 games overall.
The Oilers have combined to score with their opponents an average 5.3 GPG on the road this season! Needless to say both teams offenses are currently not been performing very efficiently! With that said and considering the opening Total attached this contest it will be easy for me to recommend a conservative wager on the UNDER!
Friday, March 17, 2006
As far as pointspread upsets go, only Montana's win over Nevada is of note. The Wolf Pack opened a seven-point favorite in that game and were bet down to 5 1/2. Oklahoma was a three or 3 1/2 point favorite over Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Marquette a two-point choice over Alabama, so neither of those outcomes should be considered much of a surprise. In the case of the Texas A&M/Syracuse game, Syracuse opened a one-point choice but A&M closed a one or 1 /2-point favorite.
Texas A&M and Montana's upsets came in the now-famous (or infamous) 5/12 matchups. Washington (also a five-seed), avoided the curse by beating 12th-seeded Utah State, 75-61. The last of the four 5/12 matchups will be played tonight at 7:10 ET, when Pittsburgh takes on Kent State. Pitt, the five-seed, is favored by 6 1/2 points.
Duke was the only one of the four No. 1 seeds in action on Thursday and the Blue Devils did little to dispel the notion that they are no more than a two-man team. Redick and Williams each scored 29 points, accounting for all but 12 of Duke's points in an uninspiring 70-54 win over Southern. The remaining three No. 1 seeds (U Conn, Villanova and Memphis) all play Friday.
Three high seeds, No. 2 Tennessee. No. 3 Gonzaga and No. 4 Boston College, were lucky to win. Tennessee needed an off-balance jumper by Lofton with 2.9 seconds left to get by 15th-seeded Winthrop. Gonzaga, a three-seed, needed a late comeback and a 35-point effort from Adam Morrison to get past Xavier (14), 79-75. The win extended the Bulldogs' winning streak to a nation-best 19 games but it should be noted that the team is just 7-12 ATS in those wins.
As for BC, the Eagles trailed Pacific (13) 71-65 with just under three minutes to go but somehow forced OT. Pacific also took a six-point lead in the first OT but again BC tied it. In the second OT, the Eagles outscored the Tigers 14-2, leaving Pacific bettors (at plus-eight) shaking their heads. It was not fun to have had NC-Wilmington, either. The Seahawks were 2 1/2 or three-point underdogs versus George Washington but led 64-46 with 11:11 left in regulation. GW used a 19-0 run to help send the game into OT and then Wilmington blew an 85-81 lead with 2:06 left, before losing 88-85!
Day One also had its share of blowouts as Wichita State began the day with an easy 86-66 win over Seton Hall, Florida had little trouble with South Alabama (76-50) and UCLA posted the day's largest margin of victory, beating Belmont by 34 points (78-44).
The Big East set a record on Sunday when it received eight bids but it was hardly a good day for its schools. Besides Seton Hall and Syracuse losing, Marquette lost to Alabama (90-85), giving the Big East an 0-3 Thursday. Alabama's win gave the SEC a perfect 4-0 day (Fla, LSU and Tenn also won), while the ACC (Duke and BC), the Big-10 (Illinois and Indiana) and the Pac-10 (UCLA and Washington) all went 2-0.
There are 32 more first round games Friday (all on CBS), beginning with Davidson vs Ohio State (12:15 ET) and ending with the latest scheduled tip-off, UAB versus Kentucky at about 9:45 ET.
The NIT is also playing, although it's hardly getting much ink. After home teams went just 4-4 SU (3-5 ATS) in the tourney's eight opening round games on Tuesday, home teams have ruled the day in the first round. Wednesday, home teams went 6-1 SU and 5-2 ATS and last night, were a perfect 4-0 SU and ATS! Of note, all four visiting teams last night were playing their second game in three days, while the home team was playing for the first time.
The NIT's first of four No. 1 seeds played last night, as Michigan beat UTEP, 82-67. Two more No. 1 seeds play tonight, Louisville hosting Delaware State at 7:00 ET (Cards are favored by 16 points) and Cincinnati hosting NC-Charlotte at 8:00 ET (Bearcats are favored by 6 1/2 points.) Again in tonight's action, all four visiting teams will be playing their second games while the home teams are playing for the first time. Tonight however, the visitors do have an extra day of rest. The NIT's final No. 1 seed (Maryland) plays tomorrow for the first time, four days after the tournament began!
Miami came back from a 25-point deficit last night against the Celtics (trailed 59-34 in the second quarter) to win, 107-104. It matched the league's largest comeback win this year. Miami has now won 13 of 14 games and is a season-high 22 games above .500 at 43-21. However, the Heat are in no danger of catching the Pistons, as they trail Detroit by 8 1/2 games in the Eastern Conference.
Seattle beat Philly last night (anyone care?) and despite Kevin Garnett's 22nd consecutive double-double (he owns a league-best 51 on the year!), the T-wolves lost to the Warriors, 105-97. It marks Minnesota's seventh straight loss (tying New Orleans for the longest current losing streak), its eighth straight road loss and its 21st loss in its last 24 road games!
Tonight's NBA schedule contains 11 games, highlighted by Ron Artest's return to Indianapolis (Kings at Pacers) and a huge Western Conference showdown, the Suns at the Spurs. The Kings lost their first two games with Artest but have since gone a remarkable 15-5 SU and 16-3-1 ATS! At 33-31, the Kings are now in the 7th playoff spot out West, just two games behind Memphis. as for the Pacers, they occupy the East's sixth playoff spot, 4 1/2 games inside the "cut line." The game tips at 7:05 ET and the Kings are favored by 1 1/2 points with a total of 194.
The Spurs recently beat the Suns in Phoenix 117-93, but Nash missed that game, as did Barbosa. Phoenix comes into this game winners of 14 of their 16 and with a record of 19-10 (19-9-1 ATS) on the road. The Spurs have gone 23-5 since losing to Detroit back on Jan 12 and are 28-4 at home this year, although just 17-15 ATS. San Antonio is favored by 5 1/2 points (205 1/2).
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Thursday, March 16, 2006
NCAA tournament notesEveryone knows that No. 1 seeds have never lost a first round game (84-0) and that just four No. 2 seeds have lost in the first round. However, while the top-two seeds may be 55-1 SU the last seven years, they have gone just 29-27 ATS! Favorites have posted losing pointspread records in each of the last five years in the NCAA's first round (including the play-in game). The closest they came to a winning mark was in 2002, when they went 17-16, or minus-.6 units!
Overall, favorites are just 73-91-1 ATS the last five years."Non-board" teams have posted a respectable 50-47-2 ATS the last six years, including a 17-10 mark the last two years! Among the six "power conferences", Big-10 teams have been the best favorites, going 24-14-1 ATS since 2001, while SEC teams own the worst mark, going just 12-28 ATS when favored.
However, SEC 'dogs' have posted a 9-5 ATS mark, just ahead of Big East dogs, which have gone 15-9. Teams out of the CAA have gone 5-1-1 ATS the last five years with MVC teams not far behind, posting a 9-2-1 ATS mark.Over the last 15 years, the title has been won 12 times by a school from either the ACC, Big East or SEC. Only two Pac-10 teams, UCLA in 1995 and Arizona in 1997 plus Michigan State of the Big-10 in 2000, have broken through. While all four No. 1 seeds have never made it to the Final Four in the same year (seeding began in 1979), only one Final Four has been played without a single No. 1 seed. That was in 1980, when Louisville (a two-seed) beat UCLA (an eight-seed) in the national title game. The two other Final Four teams that year were Iowa (5) and Purdue (6).
The Pistons won 105-98 in Toronto last night and at 51-12, continue to own the NBA's best record. The Mavericks won 95-81 in Houston and upped their NBA-best road record to 22-9 and more importantly, moved a half-game up on the idle Spurs (51-14 to 50-14). The Rockets are now 2-16 in games without McGrady.
The Suns easily took care of the Clippers, winning 126-95, a night after scoring 129 points in Seattle. Phoenix leads the Clippers by 7 1/2 games in the Pacific Division and at 108.4 PPG, is the league's highest scoring team again this year. Even without the injured Stoudemire (not to mention the traded Johnson and Richardson), Phoenix is averaging a mere two PPG less than last year's 110.4 PPG average. The Suns also own a plus-6.9 PPG differential, the third-best figure in the league and only slightly lower than the plus-7.1 PPG they posted last year.
While the Magic entered last night's home game with the Jazz having lost 19 of their previous 23 games and the Knicks entered their home game with the Hawks losers of 24 of 28, both teams won. Orlando beat Utah 114-108 in overtime and New York edged Atlanta 121-117 in double-overtime. Things did not go as well for two other struggling teams, the T-wolves and the Blazers. While Minnesota did cover in its 95-92 loss to the Lakers, it marked the team's sixth straight loss, its seventh straight on the road and its 20th in its last 23 road games!
The Blazers lost in New Jersey to the Nets, 78-65. The league's lowest scoring team (88.4 PPG) had scored just 66 points the night before in a loss to the Bulls but outdid themselves in this one. Portland scored just five fourth-quarter points against the Nets, the second-worst 4th quarter in NBA history. Almost unbelievably, the Warriors scored just two points in the 4th quarter of a game against the Raptors back on Feb 8, 2004.
It's a short three-game card in tonight's NBA, including a TNT doubleheader. The Celtics are in Miami to take on the Heat at 8:05 ET and the T-wolves continue their road trip in Oakland against the Warriors at 10:35 ET. Opposite a busy NCAA tournament schedule, one wouldn't expect much interest in these rather ordinary matchups. However, that's why God created pointspreads! The Heat are favored by nine points (208) and the Warriors are favored by six points (199).
Here are my opening day picks for hte final four
GEORGE MASON (+4) VS. MICHIGAN STATE 7:10 ET Dayton, OH
Are pigs flying? Has hell frozen over? Is it raining cats and dogs? I find myself answering the word "No" to all three questions, yet find myself scratching my head as to why the Tom Izzo led Michigan State Spartans are laying less than a couple of buckets to the George Mason Patriots. That being said, the lines low for a reason, and that's because A. GM is a damn good basketball team, and B. the Spartans have underachieved all season long. Mason won its first CAA regular-season championship since 1999-2000 and matched its school-best record of 23 wins set in 2003-04. Now, the Patriots have a chance to prove themselves against the 21-11 Spartans that edged them 66-60 in the consolation round of last year's BB&T Classic at Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. Its 11th seed is the highest ever for a Patriots team and the highest for a CAA team since UNC Wilmington was an 11th seed back in '03. HC Jim Larranaga will be without the services of second leading scorer PG Tony Skinn after giving Loren Stokes of Hofstra a groin blow late in their game a few weeks back, but the Patriots are deep enough and match up well to really give the Spartans a ruin for their money shorthanded. This lines low for a reason people, and the Spartans might suffer a groin blow of their own if their not careful. Grab the points!!!
ORAL ROBERTS (+12') VS. MEMPHIS 2:50 ET Dallas, TX
Friday's game marks Oral Roberts first NCAA Tournament appearance in 22 years, as they dropped a 92-83 opening round decision to the same Tiger program in Memphis during the 1984 tourney. This is a squad that played the likes of 5 tourney participants this season that includes Oklahoma, Marquette, Montana, Utah State, and Monmouth (whom they beat by a 62-54 count in the Great Alaska Shoot-out). They lost to a very sound Utah State team by 5 in OT, by a triple at Marquette, and by 8 at Oklahoma. The Golden Eagles, led by seventh year HC Scott Sutton, enter the tournament winners in 13 of their last 15 contests including a three-game sweep of the Mid-Con Tournament to punch their ticket to the dance. There's no doubt that Memphis is the superior team in this match-up, but the Tigers recent form hasn't been the greatest. If their shots continue not to drop, which has been the case of late, the Golden Eagles have an excellent shot of covering this lofty spread with ease. OR's resume shows they've been battle tested this season, and I'll gladly take the gracious amount of points against the weakest #1 seed in the tourney.
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Thu Mar 16 '06 2:40p
Many were left shaking their heads when the Vols popped up on the screen as the #2 seed in the DC bracket Sunday night, including HC Bruce Pearl who muttered "Holy feces" in astonishment. This high a seeding was definitely an afterthought after the Vols floundered to close out the season. That being said, their opponent will give them all they can handle and more. Winthrop comes into this match-up very battle tested, and will no doubt be playing with loads of confidence after playing the likes of Auburn, Alabama, Memphis, S. Carolina, and Marquette. They beat HC Tom Crean's club SU earlier this year, and had both Alabama and Auburn on the ropes before falling by three and two points respectively. HC Coach Gregg Marshall said he would like his team's chances against any of those on a neutral court after falling at Memphis. Well, ask and you shall receive. The Eagles are a veteran club that plays solid defense and cleans the glass well. They gave Gonzaga a major run for the first 35 minutes of their 1st round game a year ago, and I expect them to give the Vols all they can handle and more this Thursday afternoon.
Texas A&M +1.0
Thu Mar 16 '06 9:30p
You can't help but be impressed with the run the Orange had this past weekend in the BE tourney. Their Cinderella run earned them a bid in the big dance when many had them penciled in the NIT before they tipped off with the Bearcats Thursday afternoon. Not only are they firmly supplanted in the tourney, but the committee was gracious enough to tab them as a #5 seed. A 5 SEED!!! YOU GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!! This is not the caliber team of a #5 seed, and I don't think their miraculous run in the BE tourney has all of a sudden transformed them into one. The Aggies closed out their regular season campaign winning 8 of its L/10 games SU with both losses versus Texas. HC Billy Gillespie has done an excellent job transforming this group into a competitive unit, and one that will challenge for the Big 12 Title in the coming years. They only went 5-6 SU on the road this year, but covered the number eight of the 11 times. Cuse got the benefit of a pro-orange crowd in the MSG; otherwise known as Cuse's second home for the BE tourney. That won't be the case down in Jacksonville, and I really foresee Cuse's youngsters getting rattled by the stifling "D" the Aggies come at you with on every possession. It was a treat to see Gerry Mac's run this past weekend, but it all comes to an end down in Jacksonville. Aggies move on!!!
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Tuesday, March 14, 2006 (7:30 ET)
Current Line: NC Charlotte -8
For whatever reason, NC Charlotte did not play as well at home (8-6 SU) this season as it did on the road (10-6), and this is no easy assignment here either.Georgia Southern finished at 20-9, but its NCAA Tournament dreams were shattered when Appalachian State upset the Eagles in the first round of the Southern Conference Tournament. They now look to make some noise in the NIT vs. some major conference schools, and this team just may be up for this task. The Eagles were 4-4 SU and 4-2 ATS in their non-conference road games this season, and they were a fine 6-2 ATS including an outstanding 5-3 STRAIGHT UP in this underdog role!
Charlotte was a dismal 3-9 ATS at home, and while the 49ers did have a positive average winning home margin of +2.6 points per game, that would not be nearly enough to cover this spot. Moreover, the Niners were 0-4 ATS in their last four lined home non-conference games, and they even lost outright at home to Valparaiso in a non-lined home non-conference affair! They have not covered a number vs. a non-conference opponent in this building since beating Coppin State 82-65 way back on opening night, and even then the 49ers barely covered the 16-point spot.
Play on GEORGIA SOUTHERN +8.
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Monday, March 13, 2006
It's interesting to compare the early win totals posted by Palms bet boss Richie Baccellieri to the opening numbers offered at Pinnacle.
The New York Yankees topped the offshore list at 100 1/2 victories. However, that number shrunk to 97 by the time the number hit the board in Las Vegas. The defending American League East champs were just one of many teams across the betting board that enticed 'under' bettors.
Washington and Florida experienced the biggest fluctuations. The Nationals were in the NL-East title chase for most of 2005 in their first season in the nation's capital en route to an 81-81 finish. Pinnacle, expecting more of the same from the Nationals in 2006, posted their win total at 81. The Palms countered by putting up a 75.
Florida, financially strapped because of an unstable stadium situation, pared down its payroll after winning 83 games last season. Offshore bookmakers thought 70 1/2 was an appropriate adjustment, but by the time number surfaced locally it was down to 65.
The New York Mets and Toronto were arguably the most active teams in the trade market during the offseason. The Mets improved by 12 games from 2004 to 2005 when they won 83 times. The addition of Carlos Delgado and Paul LoDuca has fans in the Big Apple dreaming about unseating Atlanta atop the NL-East. New York's projected win total opened at 91 1/2 offshore and hit the board in Las Vegas at 90.
There are more than a few baseball pundits who think the Toronto Blue Jays can compete with the Yankees and Boston in the AL-East. Toronto ownership opened its purse strings, giving general manager J.P. Ricciardi some spending cash. A.J. Burnett steps in as the No. 2 starter behind Roy Halladay. Troy Glaus and Lyle Overbay add punch to the offense.
The Jays were one of the few teams on the board that attracted 'over' activity, opening at 85 1/2 offshore and 87 at the Palms.
The defending champion Chicago White Sox, winners of 99 games in 2005, are once again among the favorites to win the American League crown. Yet, the win total for the Pale Hose is a relatively modest 91.
Houston still has Andy Pettitte and Roy Oswalt at the top of its starting rotation, but questions concerning the future of Roger Clemens and an anemic offense haven't excited oddsmakers. The Astros won 89 games last season to earn a wild-card berth. Expectations are lower in 2006, with their win total set at 83.
Fans in Colorado and Kansas City didn't have much to cheer about last season and apparently their optimism would be misplaced in 2006. The Rockies cashed 67 times last season and their number this year was offered at 68. The Royals’ many offseason moves, plus the Marlins' demise, give them a chance to avoid finishing with the worst record in baseball. Kansas City, which won 63 games last year, opened this season at 61 offshore and 63 at the Palms.
Complete over/under win totals appear below.
TEAM 2005 WINS 2006 PINN 2006 PALMS
ARIZONA 77 77 74
ATLANTA 90 90 88 ½
BALTIMORE 74 75 1/2 75
BOSTON 95 92 90 ½
CHI CUBS 79 84 85 ½
WHITE SOX 99 92 91
CINCINNATI 73 74 73
CLEVELAND 93 89 1/2 89 ½
COLORADO 67 68 68
DETROIT 71 76 1/2 77 ½
FLORIDA 83 70 1/2 65
HOUSTON 89 83 1/2 83
KANSAS CITY 56 61 63
LA ANGELS 95 89 89 ½
LA DODGERS 71 84 1/2 84 ½
MILWAUKEE 81 77 80 ½
MINNESOTA 83 79 1/2 82 ½
NY METS 83 91 1/2 90
NY YANKEES 95 100 1/2 97
OAKLAND 88 87 88 ½
PHILADELPHIA 88 82 82 ½
PITTSBURGH 67 74 1/2 75 ½
SAN DIEGO 82 77 1/2 78
SAN FRAN 75 79 1/2 82 ½
SEATTLE 69 73 1/2 75
ST LOUIS 100 95 93 ½
TAMPA BAY 67 68 67
TEXAS 79 78 81
TORONTO 80 85 1/2 87
WASHINGTON 81 81 75
Friday, March 10, 2006
This is an extremely tough spot for San Antonio. While the Lakers had last night off, the Spurs come off a nationally televised 'revenge-win' at Phoenix. Tonight will mark their fourth game in the past five nights. After losing vs. the Clippers on Tuesday the Spurs are now a poor 4-12 ATS the last 16 times they played the second of back to back games. The Lakers are 3-1 ATS their last four visits to San Antonio. Tonight, they will be looking for some payback as the Spurs beat them on Monday at LA. Lets take the points as Kobe and co. keep this game close the entire way with a shot at the upset.
Play on LA
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Thursday, March 09, 2006
World Baseball Classic? What the hell is the World Baseball classic? This tournament was baseballs attempt to the IOC Olympic committee telling them to shove it for eliminating baseball and softball in the Olympics.
Now I am a pretty big baseball fan but what the hell is the baseball classic. I mean kids grow dreaming of winning the World Series not the World baseball classic.
I watch sports, I bet on sports and I even attempt to play sports but am I really desperate enough to watch this marketing ploy. I mean I am not one of those pathetic losers that try to capture my youth or cling onto a dream that I never had a chance or ability to play in. I live in reality and clinging on to my last stands of hair or playing a game that I really have no use playing is one of the saddest things ever. If I ever become of those people just take me out to the back of Beaver Brook Farms (my friend’s barn) and shoot me.
I mean kids dream about game 7 World Series or going to play baseball for a NCAA colleges like Arizona or UCLA not the baseball classic.
Ever since Bud Selig first announced that baseball would hold its own version of the world Cup, the professional skeptics who are the baseball writers, have dedicated forests to blasting the notion.
If Bud Selig wants to highlight baseball, maybe start by cleaning up the drugs in baseball or making you athletes more accessible. Out of all the major sports baseball players are the most arrogant and non-accommodating. MLB should look at the NHL or NACAR driver.
I mean Bud Selig is one step from looking like Skeletor. This guy is so blind to the real problems of baseball he has to create this made up pseudo tournament.
First off – anything Uncle Bud comes up with deserves intense scrutiny considering his almost perfectly consistent inconsistency. Also, baseball – a North American invention – was clearly attempting to mimic soccer’s international success. That’s even after North American fans have demonstrated again and again that they would rather be kicked in the head than embrace anything to do with soccer.
Then there was the timing, March, when baseball players are supposed to be in training. As in, the hitters won’t be very good – and the pitchers won’t be able to last longer than an inning. This tournament is non competitive as the pitchers have pitch count they can not exceed.
Another kick at the tournament is who wasn’t going. The likes of Vladamir Guerrero, Manny Ramirez, Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, Curt Schilling, Billy Wagner, Mark Prior, Mark Mulder, Jose Vidro, Tim Hudson, Melvin Mora, Barry Zito, Roy Halladay, Hideki Matsui, Gary Sheffield, CC Sabathia and John Smoltz, are all in absentia.
Not all teams are embracing Selig’s international adventure either. The Yankees posted a sign at their spring training facility apologizing to their snowbird fans for the absence of stars including Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Johnny Damon. Hey, I wonder if George Steinbrenner will post an apology at Yankees stadium for not winning a World Series in five seasons – despite having spent more than half a billion dollars in the attempt?
Yet Selig insisted this marketing ploy to grow the game globally would work. A few days in – he may just be right
Even though I can’t even look at Selig (I might turn into stone) this is working.
Combine those three after a long hard winter, and falling just after the Olympics, where nationalism reigned supreme and we fans long for another taste for it, even Selig would be hard pressed to blow it. The ticket sales are surprisingly good and those who are going to the games appear to be having a blast.
Seeing 30,000 Mexican’s going nuts over their team after they lost a close one to the heavily favored American’s was one. I mean after that game I went to “run for the boarder” Another was South Africa almost taking out Canada. And just yesterday there was the “Miracle on Grass” (sorry Lake Placid) as Canada beat the mighty Americans.
The next scheduled “Classic” is set for 2009.
Maybe you should start thinking about booking your tickets now as I am hooked
Maybe we all have to get on our knee and have go to town on Bud cause this man as a genius and whatever Bud wants he seems to get
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
It's do or die for HC Rick Pitino and his redbirds as they lock horns with the Panthers to play for the right to match up with West Virginia in the second round. The season looked promising after they got off to a 11-1 start, but the start of Big East play saw them lose 10 of their overall 16 games. Injuries hampered their conference play, but they enter tonight's game the healthiest they've been in quite some time.
Pitt looked to be a major player in the Big East half way through their conference schedule, but faltered down the stretch losing 5 of their L/10 overall. That includes a pair of losses to Seton Hall and West Virginia to close out their regular season schedule.
These clubs met only once this year, and Pitt took home the cash as 3-point road pups by a 61-57 count. Taquan Dean reinjured his ankle early in that one, and only got to play for the first 12 minutes. His scoring was severely missed even though the Cards held a 1-point lead at the half.
With both clubs desperate for a first round win, I'm going to back the Cards who find themselves on life support. They need to win a few games in this tourney just to be considered for the Dance, and I'll back a Rick Pitino coached squad anytime it's grabbing points in tournament play. The Cards are 6-3 SU off a loss against a conference rival this season, and a decent 2-1 ATS seeking revenge from a home loss. Grab whatever points you can as this one might come down to a final shot to determine the victor.
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
Horizon League Championship
Butler @ Wisconsin Milwaukee
Tuesday, March 7, 2006 (ESPN - 9:00 ET)
Current Total: 128 ½
These teams usually play low scoring games against each other, and we expect more of the same tonight.These clubs met twice during the regular season this year and they combined for exactly 123 points in each contest. Moreover, there teams have averaged a combined 125.9 points in the last seven head-to-head meetings since 2003, with the UNDER going 4-1 in the games that had a posted total.
Yes Milwaukee prefers a more up tempo game as the Panthers are averaging 72.9 points per game for the year, but Butler has done an excellent job of controlling the pace against them and we have no reason to believe the same thing will not happen tonight.
Butler blew out Wisconsin Green Bay 73-51 on Saturday, but that combined total of 124 would be good enough to cash the UNDER here. More importantly, that game marked the third time in the last five games that the Bulldogs have allowed 64 points or less, and the second time in those five games that they held their opponent in the 50s. Given that this is actually a true road game in Milwaukee, we look for the Bulldogs to employ their slowdown tactics yet again tonight.
Play on BUTLER/WISCONSIN MILWAUKEE UNDER 128 ½.
Friday, March 03, 2006
The Canucks visit the United Center and try to rebound off a loss to the Predators to restart the NHL season. The Olympic break has thrown a real wrench into a lot of teams and Vancouver is no different as they try and get their injury situation under control. Vancouver has been amazing at home but has struggled on the road and have been below .500 for most of the season. Scoring has been an issue for both clubs and tonights game is a valuable 2 points. Chicago has gone under 7 of the last 8 at home, and the Canucks have gone under 4 of the last 5 on the road.
Look for another low scoring game and look for very few penalties as both teams have cited publically their frustration with how poorly their penalty killing has been.
Play on: Under
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Not matter what Gretzky is still a God. Ask anyone in Canada. There isn’t a person in Canada who wouldn’t follow Gretzky’s lead. When he says suck we all say how hard. I have numerous buddies that would wipe Gretzky’s ass after a night of beer and Chili at Taco Bell (Campbell).
The US team didn't seem to be entangled in as much drama as the Canadians going into the games with Team Canada Executive Director and hockey legend Wayne Gretzky being tied up in the Rick Tocchet gambling sting as well as questions as to his choices for the team but the US did seem to have some outspoken critics after the games. What was surprising to most, was that disparaging comments were coming from within the organization - on ice level to be specific.
Three time US Olympian Mike Modano ripped into his country's executive group following the US 4-3 loss to Finland that bounced them from the tournament.
"You'd think USA Hockey would be a well-oiled machine, but it's not," he said. "Basically we were on our own for hotels, tickets, flights, stuff like that. Normally we wouldn't have to worry about stuff like that."
Gretzky stocked this year's Canadian roster with a group who's majority couldn't exactly be referred to as 'spring chickens' either with 18 of the starting 25 in the lineup being born prior to 1980. Yes - the core of this year's team was there to bring home gold during Salt Lake 2002 as well as the 2004 World Cup, but 4 years is a long time in sport-years and takes its toll on an a battered old hockey body (even with a year off for the lockout).
Pittsburgh Penguins rookie standout Sidney Crosby was left off the roster completely, despite sitting 12th in NHL scoring with 65 points in 58 games as were Jonathan Cheechoo and Patrick Marleau, both standouts with the San Jose Sharks this season.
"People are going to question who was on the ice and who was on the team and that's OK," Gretzky told CBC Sports.
"I'm a pretty big boy. I can stand up [to any criticism].
"[But] obviously we have to do something different for 2010."
It is indeed, Wayne, a time for the 'changing of the guard'.
My congratulations to Sweden who did end up winning gold but even they had a short lived celebration as NHL players from that winning team were right back on planes heading to their respective North American club cities after a few minutes of Stockholm-style celebration.
Maybe there is a lot to be taken from the fallout following this year's Olympics.
Maybe the US program needs a revamping and should seriously consider Modano's comments as worthy. Maybe Gretzky's history should be discounted and he shouldn't have the right to decide who suits up for Canada in Vancouver 2010. Maybe all of this hullabaloo is really justified afterall.
... or maybe... it just sucks to lose.
I say 1 or 2 ply Mr. Gretzky?
Buy your picks at Who2beton or at Don Best
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Wed Mar 1 '06 8:00p
Kansas State (14-11, 5-9 Big 12) enters tonight game against Nebraska (17-10, 7-7 Big 12) as a road underdog! The Wildcats are 7-2 ATS when getting points and are 11-5 ATS against winning teams like Nebraska this season! This Wildcats team has suffered a pair of back to back heart breaking 1 point losses to conference power houses Texas and Oklahoma and will be more than motivated to avenge those losses and at the same time bolster their Big 12 conference tourney seeding! Nebraska on the other hand has had an average campaign and have lost 4 of the L/6 trips to the hardwood and are 3-6 ATS as a favorite this season and 0-1 ATS as 3 point chalk or less on home court!
Bottom line: The Wildcats and Huskers still have a lot to play for here this evening, and I expect this to be a spirited hard fought affair that could easily be decided by a buzzer beater!
Final notes: Kanas States nine losses this season have come by five points or less. Take the points