If you hibernated through the MLB offseason, don’t worry — you didn’t miss much. It was an uneventful winter, at best, but the few roster shake-ups that did occur should add some intrigue to the 2018 season.
Those moves happened largely in the American League, and in the East division especially. The New York Yankees traded for former Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton, while the Boston Red Sox landed highly touted outfielder J.D. Martinez in free agency.
New York and Boston are notoriously tough cities to play in, especially for players coming from smaller markets. The change in environment could pose a problem for both Stanton and Martinez, who are also joining one of the most heated and historic rivalries in sports.
Kevin Millar, who was on the Red Sox in 2004 when the team came back from a 3-0 deficit against the Yankees in the ALCS en route to winning the franchise’s first World Series in 86 years, knows the challenges of these cities well.
Major League Baseball is a business. That fact is never made more apparent than during each offseason when free agent players meet with teams to discuss money, contracts and benefits. Millions of dollars are thrown at the league’s best athletes in an attempt to woo them to a new city — or to convince them to stay where they are.
But when notable names like Jose Bautista, Melky Cabrera and Jayson Werth remain unsigned into the end of March, it’s cause for alarm.
Free agent signings over the 2017-2018 offseason were startlingly slow. Even J.D. Martinez, the cream of this winter’s crop, didn’t have a finalized contract with the Boston Red Sox until February 26 — a full 12 days after pitchers and catchers reported for Spring Training.
“It was the first time we’ve seen this and I think a lot of players started panicking,” MLB Network analyst and 2004 World Series champion Kevin Millar told AOL.com on behalf of Budweiser. “It was very strange.”
It’s boring. It takes too long. Baseball fans are used to hearing the complaints.
Unfortunately, the naysayers have a point. In 2017, MLB games rose to a record-high length of three hours and five minutes. When compared to the duration of NBA and NHL games, which average between two and two-and-a-half hours, baseball games seem tedious.
Major League Baseball is acutely aware of the problem and has been steadily implementing new rules over the past several seasons to speed up the pace of the game.
“It’s always hard for us to make adjustments because we get used to one way,” Kevin Millar, 2004 World Series champion and current MLB Network analyst, told AOL.com on behalf of Budweiser. “The question is, what exactly is going to speed up a game? We don’t know.”
Few things in this world are as synonymous as beer and baseball.
On a warm summer day, there’s nothing more picturesque than watching a ballgame with a cold, refreshing brew in your hand. The drink and sport are a perfect pair — but there’s a surprising link between them that you may not have realized.
And George Springer, right fielder and 2017 World Series MVP for the Houston Astros, has helped to take the relationship between beer and baseball to an entirely new level.
Senator Ted Cruz posted his filled out March Madness bracket to Twitter on Tuesday — but he’s not going with a team from the state he represents.
Cruz is selecting No. 2 seed Duke to win the tournament, defeating the No. 1 overall seed Virginia in the championship game. He did not specify what he thinks the score of the game will be.
Despite being a senator from Texas, Cruz predicts Texas Tech will be eliminated in the Final Four and the Texas Longhorns will be knocked out in the Elite Eight. Texas A&M only made it to the senator’s Sweet Sixteen. You can see his full bracket below.
Former quarterback Tim Tebow is speaking out about his old coach Josh McDaniels amid controversy surrounding the New England Patriots offensive coordinator’s decision to turn down the head coaching position with the Indianapolis Colts.
After several rounds of interviews and an impressive showing in Super Bowl LII, the Indianapolis Colts announced McDaniels would be the new head coach of the team on Tuesday. But then, he changed his mind.
McDaniels shocked the NFL world when he rejected the Colts’ offer in favor of returning to Bill Belichick’s staff in New England. Many have criticized the move, saying it ruins McDaniels chances of ever being a head coach again, while others believe this makes him the heir apparent for Belichick’s position whenever he chooses to leave.
While Tebow said he didn’t fully understand what occurred with his former coach’s decision, he did take the opportunity to sing McDaniels’ praises.
The 2010 NFL Draft changed Tim Tebow’s life forever, and not just because it was the start of his NFL career.
After being selected 25th overall by the Denver Broncos, the young athlete received a touching gift — a “stud” of a Rhodesian Ridgeback, who he appropriately named “Bronco.”
“It made sense when I just got drafted by the Broncos,” the former quarterback told AOL.com of his dog’s moniker. “We’ve always liked the name, we always liked that truck, so we talked about it and we were like, yeah, that’s really cool.”
The Philadelphia Eagles defeated the New England Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl LII on Sunday night.
The Eagles scored first with a field goal in the first quarter and were ahead 22-12 at halftime after two quarters of trick plays and missed extra points on both sides. The Eagles briefly fell behind in the fourth quarter but regained the lead on a touchdown by Zach Ertz with just over two minutes remaining in the game.
After New England took possession, Philadelphia defensive end Brandon Graham punched the ball out of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s clutches with 2:09 left, and Eagles defensive end Derek Barnett recovered the fumble.
Football isn’t Randy Moss’ only game.
The former wide receiver, largely said to be one of the best to ever play (and maybe even the GOAT), also considers himself a pretty serious video gamer.
“I used to have an Xbox in this room, Playstation in this room, Nintendo Wii in this room,” Moss, now an analyst with ESPN, told AOL.com of how he spent his NFL paychecks. “I really took it overboard with different games.”
Terry Bradshaw has seemingly conquered it all.
During his 13-year career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, the former quarterback competed in and won four Super Bowls (IX, X, XIII and XIV). He quickly became a top-rated football analyst after his retirement and was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame during his first year of eligibility.
Away from the gridiron, Bradshaw has recorded six albums, all either country/western or gospel, and has co-written five books. The broadcaster continued his takeover of America’s living rooms when he began acting, appearing in multiple commercials and popular shows including “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “Modern Family” and “The League.”
However, the 69-year-old added one more bullet to his resume last year in an experience he called “a bucket list thing” — starring in his very own Super Bowl ad.