Good morning, all! I hope your week is going well!
Count me among those who believe Tom Brady’s magical run is about to end. The Kansas City Chiefs will win Super Bowl LV. They are the better team and Patrick Mahomes is the better quarterback.
Nothing against Brady. He is a remarkable story about to play in his 10th Super Bowl. But he is going up against a DC in Kansas City’s Steve Spagnuolo who has his number. There is no reason to think he will not have it again. Yes, Brady is a gifted athlete, producing accomplishments at an age (43) when most players have retired. But Spagnuolo will design enough defensive schemes that will befuddle Brady and he has the players to carry out the strategy.
Toss in the talented Mahomes - toe injury or not - and KC’s deep offense, helped by TE Travis Kelce, and there is no way Kansas City loses this game, even though Tampa Bay is playing on its home turf.
MLB spring training will start on time
MLB spring training will start on time. Why don’t I believe that statement? After the players association rejected MLB’s proposal to delay the season’s start from April 1 to April 29, MLB issued a long statement on Tuesday that spring training would start as originally planned in two weeks. As suspected, the main reason the players union rejected the later start date was the unilateral powers granted to the commissioner, had they agreed with MLB’s plan.
This is the second time owners have pushed to delay the season’s start and the union has pushed back. It would not surprise me if some edict (i.e. state government or even federal government) emerges to halt spring training, before it starts, though it appears all systems are go.
Meanwhile, what is evident is the deep distrust the union has toward ownership. The game is on a collision course toward a work stoppage after the agreement between owners and players expires at season’s end. It would be a major mistake, if it comes to this. It is not 1972. It is not 1981. It is not even 1994. People struggling to make ends meet, people who have lost their jobs or taken pay cuts because of the pandemic, will have a difficult time mustering sympathy for multi-millionaire players peeved at multi-billionaire owners.
The slow-paced game is losing interest among younger generations and turning off older generations, who fell in love with the sport for what it once was not what it has become. (Removing Blake Snell, who was pitching the game of his life in the World Series, because of some algorithm produced by an Ivy League whiz kid.) Stopping the game because of the animus that exists between the two sides, is a calculated risk that could only have a bad finish.
You want to know why baseball should be concerned, especially with its lack of appeal to a younger generation, look no farther than the esports trend. In a pandemic, when many people were losing their shirts, the esports industry was flourishing.
According to a story on Sports Pro Media, there are “three billion gamers worldwide.” If that isn’t a wake-up call to baseball and other sports, then what is?
Remote not Chipper’s thing
Hall of Fame player Chipper Jones is leaving his ESPN gig to become a hitting instructor with the Atlanta Braves. As I have written repeatedly, remote is in for these broadcast companies, but it was not Jones’s bag. Faced with another season of broadcasting games from a studio, plus losing his broadcast partner Jon “Boog” Sciambi to the Chicago Cubs, Jones decided to put the brakes to his promising, broadcasting career. ESPN’s loss is the Atlanta Braves gain.
That is it for today. Continue to have a great week and thank you for your support!