Tag:Padres
Posted on: November 15, 2011 10:28 pm
 

Padres, Heath Bell may be parting ways

By Matt Snyder

Padres All-Star closer Heath Bell has stated time and again he wants to remain with the Padres. He's even said in the past that he was willing to accept arbitration, which would amount to a one-year contract with a likely modest raise. But the more time passes, the more Bell sounds to be losing faith he's going to stick around. From signonsandiego.com:
“I told my guys that if there is any shot for San Diego, hold onto it. But I haven’t really heard anything from the Padres since they changed general managers. Right now, I have no idea what to expect.

“But I think there’s going to be a three-year deal out there from someone. And that’s what I’d like to have. I’d rather stay on the West Coast. But I still have a home in Florida.”
Obviously new general manager Josh Byrnes has plenty on his plate, but it's a bit surprising that he hasn't contacted Bell's agents yet, assuming he wants to retain the closer. The report did state that Byrnes is planning on meeting with Bell's agents by the end of the week. Still, Bell mentioned that if the Red Sox signed him, for example, he could play with Adrian Gonzalez again. And note above that he said he still has a home in Florida. The Marlins are looking to spend lavishly and need a closer.

And, again, Bell just sounds like he's resigned to being forced to look elsewhere -- more from signonsandiego.com:
“I have to weigh all my options,” said Bell. “I don’t know what I’m going to do. But it seems like there are going to be some very good options soon. And after everything that has happened with the Padres, I don’t know what is going on.

“They lost the general manager (Hoyer) and the guy (Jason McLeod) responsible for building the future Padres through the draft.”
I guess you could say he sounds like he's on the fence. One thing seems a near-certainty: Bell is going to get a more lucrative offer elsewhere. Will he take it? We'll find out quite soon.

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Posted on: November 15, 2011 2:28 pm
Edited on: November 15, 2011 7:23 pm
 

Dodgers, Padres sign backups

By Evan Brunell

KotsayThe Dodgers and Padres have signed Matt Treanor and Mark Kotsay, respectively.

Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that the Padres have signed outfielder Mark Kotsay to a one year, $1.25 million deal. Kotsay will likely back up all outfield positions as well as first base. Kotsay spent 2011 with the Brewers, hitting .270/.329/.373, sparking controversy in October when he started in right field during the NLCS.

TreanorThe Dodgers, meanwhile, are adding a backup catcher. The club announced Tuesday it has signed Matt Treanor. The LA Times reports it's for $850,000. Treanor will likely back up Tim Federowicz, a prospect obtained from Boston at the trade deadline. The team could also move forward with A.J. Ellis as a starter, although that's unlikely. L.A. could also bring in another catcher to challenge for playing time, but it looks as if the starting catcher for the Dodgers won't be settled until spring training.

Treanor hit .214/.338/.291 in 2011, mostly for the Royals. He was traded late in the season to Texas and was on the World Series roster, although he did not appear in a game.

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Posted on: November 15, 2011 12:31 pm
Edited on: November 15, 2011 1:04 pm
 

Report: Padres look to trade Bartlett, Hudson

Bartlett, Hudson

By Evan Brunell


The Padres intend to trade either shortstop Jason Bartlett or second baseman Orlando Hudson, Fox Sports reports.

The budget-conscious Padres would like to slash payroll from the middle infield, as San Diego has a tight budget to work with. Both infielders are the only players with guaranteed contracts for the 2012 season. Bartlett will make $5.5 million in 2012, but hit just .245/.308/.307 for the Padres, his worst offensive showing in his career outside from an eight-game stint in 2004 as a rookie. The 32-year-old was once considered a good defensive shortstop but seems to be coasting by on reputation these days. There are many teams that need a shortstop, though, so the Padres may be able to find a fit elsewhere. The infielder also has a $5.5 million option for 2013, with a $1.5 million buyout.

Hudson is also on the block. He is signed for 2012 at the same salary of $5.5 million as Bartlett, but holds a club option for 2013 worth $8 million with a $2 million buyout. Hudson struggled with the stick last year as well, hitting .246/.329/.352 and missed part of the season with a thigh strain. It will be much more difficult for San Diego to find a home for Hudson, given his declining bat and signs that he may not be a gifted fielder anymore. He also plays a position of less demand than Bartlett.

As Fox Sports writes, if Bartlett is traded, Everth Cabrera will likely draw the assignment at short. If Hudson is dealt, options include Cabrera, Logan Forsythe and Andy Parrino. If both are somehow moved, which San Diego would probably prefer, look for the team to import at least one replacement. Cabrera burst on the scene as a 22-year-old back in 2009, hitting .255/.342/.361. However, he fell flat on his face in 2010 and spent much of 2011 in the minors. He showed encouraging improvement with the bat at Triple-A this past season, so it's no surprise the Pads are trying to clear room for him. Being able to play at the league-minimum salary is also a help.

Money is a problem beyond Bartlett and Hudson, though. Fox Sports also reports that the club isn't optimistic about retaining Heath Bell.

While the closer has long expressed an interest in returning to town and even once admitted he might accept arbitration to stay with the team, it appears that Bell's market is strong in free agency. The closer has been holding out for a three-year pact with San Diego, which the club so far is unwilling to do. The new labor agreement could complicate things as well, as draft-pick compensation is likely to be modified for Type A free agents. That could present a problem, especially if teams are no longer required to surrender a first-round pick to ink a Type A free agent, which Bell is. That would not boost Bell's market, which may already be beyond the Padres' reach.

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Posted on: November 11, 2011 4:53 pm
Edited on: November 12, 2011 2:01 pm
 

Closer look at all 30 closing situations



By C. Trent Rosecrans
 and Matt Snyder

It appears the first domino in closer market has fallen (at least, we're pretty sure this time), but that leaves Heath Bell and Ryan Madson as the top relievers still available. But who needs a closer? Here's a look at the closing situation for all 30 teams.

AL East

Baltimore Orioles: Kevin Gregg is still under contract -- much to the chagrin of new general manager Dan Duquette's chagrin. Gregg will make $5.8 million in 2012, not exactly ideal for a guy with a WHIP of 1.642 last season and an ERA of 4.37 while picking up 22 saves. Jim Johnson recorded nine saves and threw just 91 innings, but doesn't exactly miss a ton of bats. The Orioles could move Johnson to the rotation.
Possibilities: Gregg, Johnson, Bell, Francisco Cordero, Francisco Rodriguez, Jonathan Broxton.

Red Sox: Well, obviously Papelbon is gone. Papelbon was the Red Sox closer for the last six years, recording the final out of the 2007 World Series among other memories. Still, As untouchable as he was in his first four years as the closer (1.74 ERA and 0.917 WHIP from 2006-2009), he had a 3.43 ERA and 1.104 WHIP over the last two seasons. Daniel Bard is unhittable at times, but struggled in the last two months of the season (which certainly wasn't uncommon among Red Sox), posting a 6.95 ERA in 21 games in August and September.
Possibilities: Bard, Madson, Bell.

New York Yankees: Mariano Rivera. Enough said.

Tampa Bay Rays: The Rays let the Yankees overpay for Rafael Soriano and then picked up Kyle Farnsworth off the discard pile, signing him to a two-year, $6 million deal. In retrospect, it was genius -- Farnsworth had 25 saves with a 2.18 ERA in 2011 and the Rays will keep him another year and let someone else overpay him for 2013.

Toronto Blue Jays: Frank Francisco was the team's closer for much of 2011, but he's a free agent and the team could be looking to spend some money on a  closer.
Possibilities: Madson, Bell, Cordero, Rodriguez, Casey Janssen.

AL Central

Chicago White Sox: Right-hander Sergio Santos converted 30 of 36 save opportunities, liming batters to just a .181/.282/.314 slash line and he should be in line to keep his job in 2012. If he falters, Addison Reed has a chance to take over.

Cleveland Indians: Chris Perez is on solid ground as the team's closer, picking up 35 saves in 2011.

Detroit Tigers: The Tigers picked up the $9 million option on Jose Valverde.

Kansas City Royals: The Royals picked up the $6 million option on Joakim Soria and have options for 2013 and 2014.

Minnesota Twins: The Twins declined their $12.5 million option on incumbent Joe Nathan, but have expressed interest in bringing him back. Although his overall numbers -- 4.84 ERA, 1.164 WHIP, 14 saves -- weren't too impressive, he did convert all 11 of his saves in the second half of the season. Left-hander Glen Perkins had two saves in 2011 and struck out 65 batters in 61 2/3 innings. If the team doesn't sign a free agent -- or trade for someone -- Perkins would have the best shot.
Possibilities: Nathan, Perkins, Jon Rauch, Broxton.

AL West

Los Angeles Angels: Jordan Walden recorded 32 saves as a rookie and made the All-Star team. He did blow 10 saves last season, so it wouldn't be a complete shock if the team looked for an upgrade, but it's not expected, especially with tight purse strings this winter. The team could bring in a veteran for cheap that could close if Walden falters.
Possibilities: Walden, Scott Downs, Broxton, Rauch.

Oakland Athletics: Andrew Bailey is the team's closer, but a trade is always possible with Oakland.

Seattle Mariners: Brandon League had 37 saves and a 2.79 ERA in 2011.

Texas Rangers: The Rangers could be a wild card in the free agent closer market if they decided to move Neftali Feliz to the rotation. The Rangers tried that last spring but decided to keep Feliz in the bullpen. If they bring in a big-name, that would mean they believe Feliz can make the move. If not, there's still a chance of Mike Adams taking over for Feliz. Or they could bring in a low-cost veteran to have in reserve in case Feliz does work in the rotation.
Possibilities: Mike Adams, Madson, Cordero, Rauch, Broxton.

NL East

Atlanta Braves: Craig Kimbrel. Period. 

Miami Marlins: While the artist formerly known as Leo Nunez gets his name issue sorted out, the Marlins have a gaping hole at closer. The current members of their bullpen combined for four saves last season. Do the Marlins try to go with an internal option like Edward Mujica or make a splash on the free agent market (as they've been connected to several huge names already)? 
Possibilities: Nunez, Mujica, Madson, Cordero, Rodriguez, Bell.

New York Mets: If they stay internally, which is entirely possible, it looks like Bobby Parnell. But he wasn't awesome by any stretch when given save chances last season. The Mets have spent big on a free agent closer before (K-Rod), so would they be gunshy in doing so again? It's possible. But it's also possible they try to land someone like Ryan Madson. 
Possibilities: Parnell, Madson, Bell.

Philadelphia Phillies: Papelbon. 

Washington Nationals: Drew Storen closed 43 of 48 games in 2011, his first full season in the majors. One would think that would be enough to earn him at least another year on the job, but Storen's name keeps popping up in trade rumors and the Nationals have been reportedly interested in Madson. The Nats have plenty of money, so if they wanted to ink a big-name closer and deal Storen as part of a package for a center fielder (Denard Span, perhaps?), they would be able to do so. 
Possibilities: Storen, Madson, Bell, Cordero.

NL Central

Chicago Cubs: It's probably going to be Carlos Marmol again, but he better get himself in gear. Not only did he blow 10 saves, but his once-astronomical strikeout rate lowered a bit in 2011 and control continues to be a serious problem. With new brass at the helm, 2011 will likely be his last chance to get things fixed. 

Cincinnati Reds: Cordero had a great four-year run with the Reds, amassing 150 saves with a 2.96 ERA, but he's a free agent now. Fireballer Aroldis Chapman is ticketed for the starting rotation and Nick Masset seems to be awfully inconsistent. The Reds don't have the money to spend in free agency, so would they make a trade for, say, Huston Street or Andrew Bailey? Seems unlikely. Either Chapman doesn't make it as a starter and sticks as closer or someone internally (23-year-old Brad Boxberger?) gets a shot. This one is totally up in the air. 
Possibilities: Cordero, Chapman, Boxberger, Bailey, Street, Broxton.

Houston Astros: Mark Melancon saved 20 games with a 2.78 ERA last season. There are far bigger problems with this team to believe they'll try hard to make a change here.

Milwaukee Brewers: John Axford and his award-winning 'stache.  

Pittsburgh Pirates: All-Star Joel Hanrahan nailed down the job last season. 

St. Louis Cardinals: Jason Motte was never officially named closer by the stubborn Tony La Russa, but he did more than enough down the stretch and in the playoffs to earn the job for 2012, closing nine of 10 saves during the Cardinals' late run and five more in the postseason. 

NL West

Arizona Diamondbacks: It will again be J.J. Putz with David Hernandez filling in if (when?) Putz falls injured.

Colorado Rockies: Street is reportedly on the trading block. If he's is dealt, look for Rafael Betancourt to take over. He collected eight saves with a 2.89 ERA and more than a strikeout per inning in 2011. 

Los Angeles Dodgers: Rookie Javy Guerra came on to save 21 games in 23 chances with a 2.31 ERA and 38 strikeouts in 46 2/3 innings in 2011. That's enough to have nailed down the job for the 2011 season, one would think. 

San Diego Padres: Bell is a free agent, but the Padres may just offer him arbitration, and he actually might accept it. If he does stay, the choice is obvious. If Bell leaves, there's a decent internal option in Chad Qualls. Qualls, 33, has 51 career saves. As far as free agency, if the Padres want to pay for a closer, they'll be paying for Bell. 
Possibilities: Bell, Qualls.

San Francisco: The Beard. 

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Posted on: November 9, 2011 8:48 pm
Edited on: November 9, 2011 9:19 pm
 

Padres unveil new logo, uniforms

Uniforms
By Evan Brunell


The San Diego Padres have unveiled new uniforms, seen above, just two seasons after drastically changing the look and feel of their uniform and logo.

The change was made after fans weren't overly receptive to the changes, so San Diego has added in a twist to incorporate franchise history.

Padres logoWe spent a lot of time listening to our fans about the uniforms over the past two years,” president Tom Garfinkel said in a press release. “What we learned is that, while the current design isn’t loved, there is also a strong feeling that this club has had so many radical changes over the years that we didn’t need another one."

As a result, the team decided to keep the basic format of its uniforms and incorporate aspects of Padres history. The Padres drew from the uniforms worn from 1936-68, when the club was in the minor leagues and famous for having Ted Williams on the roster before Williams went to the Red Sox. The uniforms displayed above are the new versions of the home, road, alternate, and camoflauge uniforms.

"I think the most loved uniforms in baseball are the ones that have tradition and history. ... They stand the test of time," Garfinkel told MLB.com. "They're not trendy colors or trendy design ... but they're a classic baseball style. We wanted to take our current uniform design and improve on it. We thought the way to improve on it was to bring back classic elements from our history and bring in traditional baseball elements in the design."

The Padres also unveiled three new logos, including a new primary logo which you can see above and to the right. It's a return to a classic baseball logo -- circular with the team name running on the outside and a primary team logo in the middle. Unlike the uniforms, this is a striking departure from the Padres' most recent logo, which was in the shape of home plate and evoked ocean imagery.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: November 3, 2011 1:21 pm
Edited on: November 3, 2011 4:23 pm
 

Matty Alou, 72, dies

Matty Alou

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Sad news from the Dominican Republic today, as Matty Alou passed away at 72, according to Dominican Today.

Alou, 72, was the middle of the three Alou brothers and played for the Giants, Pirates, Cardinals, Athletics, Padres and Yankees in his big-league career that spanned 15 seasons. Alou hit .307/.345/.381 with 1,777 hits in his career and won a batting title with a .342 average for the Pirates in 1966. He was also a two-time All-Star, making the National League team in 1968 and 1969.

Alou is best known as part of the famous baseball family. In 1963, all three Alou brothers -- Matty, Felipe and Jesus -- took the field in the same outfield and combined for 5,094 career hits, the best mark for three baseball brothers. The year Alou won the batting title, his older brother, Felipe, finished second.

There was no announced cause of death.

Best wishes to the Alou family and the baseball community in the Dominican Republic. The Giants have issued the following statement:
The Giants were deeply saddened to learn about the passing of former Giants outfielder Matty Alou. Matty, who was a formidable player during his career, was a lifetime .307 hitter who collected 1,777 hits over 15 seasons, six with the Giants from 1960-65. He was a two-time All-Star and won the 1966 National League batting title with a .342 average while playing for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Although he played for six different teams, Matty remained a part of the Giants family as a long time employee and will be forever linked with his brothers – Felipe and Jesus – as the first all-brother Major League outfield.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Alou Family during this difficult time.
In the picture above, Matty Alou is on the right, with Felipe on the left and Jesus in the center.

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Posted on: November 1, 2011 5:40 pm
Edited on: November 1, 2011 10:20 pm
 

Team-by-team NL free agency outlooks



By C. Trent Rosecrans

With open free agency set to hit us at 12:01 a.m. Thursday, it's worth taking a quick look at what every single team is going to be looking for. We've already done detailed breakdowns in the R.I.P. series, so here are some quick hitters for the National League:

East
Atlanta Braves | R.I.P.
Needs: shortstop, corner outfielder, relief pitching
Money to spend?: Not much. The Braves' biggest need was getting rid of Derrek Lowe, and they did that and have saved $5 million to boot. The team has good, young starters, but put too many innings on their bullpen. They'll need more bullpen arms and also a bat in left field and a shortstop. With Tyler Pastronicky just about ready, the team could use a veteran backup just in case he doesn't work out.

Miami Marlins | R.I.P.
Needs: starting pitching, center field
Money to spend? Oh yeah… with the team preparing to move into a new stadium, owner Jeffrey Loria is expected to make a splash in free agency and could raise payroll to the $100 million range. South Florida will be a favorite of baseball agents in the offseason who will use the Marlins as leverage -- they may even be more popular than the "mystery team" of the past off seasons. The Marlins will be rumored as a possible landing point for nearly every big free agent. The question is, which ones -- if any -- will actually take their talents to South Beach.

New York Mets | R.I.P.
Needs: starting pitching, closer, relief pitching, middle infield
Money to spend? There are plenty of questions about the Mets ownership group, so nobody outside GM Sandy Alderson really knows what's going on and how much money he has to play with. It doesn't look like the team will go crazy in trying to re-sign Jose Reyes. The team will instead hope to improve its bullpen and rotation.

More Free Agency
Position rankings

Philadelphia Phillies | R.I.P.
Needs: shortstop, corner outfielder, closer, relief pitching, first base
Money to spend? It seems like they always find it when they need it, so there's no real concern about the budget. Even with Roy Oswalt likely to leave Philadelphia, there are few worries about the team's rotation. The bullpen, however, will need to be addressed. Ryan Madson may be re-signed and used as the closer, but the Phillies need middle-innings guys, as well. Left field is still an issue and the team could look to upgrade there, but will also need to address first base while Ryan Howard recovers from his Achilles injury. John Mayberry Jr. can play first, but moving him there creates a spot in the outfield.

Washington Nationals | R.I.P.
Needs: center field, starting pitching, relief pitching
Money to spend? Oh yeah. Like the Marlins, the Nationals have money to spend and unlike the Marlins, they have shown a willingness to actually use it. Last year the team overspent on Jayson Werth, something that certainly caught the eyes of free-agents-to-be. Several top names will certainly be courted by the Nationals, including Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder and C.J. Wilson. The Nationals really can't be counted out on anyone.

Central
Chicago Cubs | R.I.P.
Needs: first base, third base, closer, relief pitching, right field
Money to spend? The Ricketts opened the pocketbooks for their general manager, so it's unlikely they'll close 'em for players. Epstein says he wants to build a team from the bottom up, but that takes time and there will be pressure to win right away, and free agency will be part of that. Expect the Cubs to at least talk to the likes of Pujols and Fielder, even if they don't sign them. With Epstein in the fold, it'll certainly be interesting to see what route the Cubs take.

Cincinnati Reds | R.I.P.
Needs: closer, relief pitcher, corner outfielder, shortstop
Money to spend? Not much. It looks like the team will stand pat in the rotation, but after not picking up the option on Francisco Cordero, Cincinnati will need someone to finish out games. Last year Walt Jocketty stayed quiet during the offseason, but this winter that may not happen. However, the team is more likely to use the trade market than spend big in free agency.

Houston Astros | R.I.P.
Needs: shortstop, relief pitching
Money to spend? The Astros are in full-on rebuilding mode, as evidenced by their July fire sale. There's also the holdup of the sale of the team and the possible switch to the American League. If Jim Crane is approved by MLB, he may want to find his own general manager. The Astros won't be much of a player in the free agent market, looking for low-priced.

Milwaukee Brewers | R.I.P.
Needs: first baseman, shortstop, third baseman, relief pitching
Money to spend? Some -- for the right people. The team will try to make a pitch to retain Fielder and possibly Jerry Hairston Jr., but are likely celebrating to be free of Yuniesky Betancourt. The team probably won't be in the race for Reyes or even Jimmy Rollins, but could be in the market for a second-tier shortstop like Clint Barmes. They'll also need to add some arms in the bullpen, but could try to re-sign the likes of Takashi Saito and LaTroy Hawkins.

Pittsburgh Pirates | R.I.P.
Needs: catcher, first base, shortstop, corner outfielder, starting pitching
Money to spend? Yes, as much as $25 million or even a little more, but they also have plenty of holes. The Pirates took some steps forward in 2011, but will need to fill out their roster and will likely be going for the second-tier players to fill out a lineup around Andrew McCutchen, Neil Walker, Jeff Karstens, Kevin Correia, Charlie Morton and James McDonald.

St. Louis Cardinals | R.I.P.
Needs: First base, shortstop, relief pitching
Money to spend? Some for the right player. The Cardinals have nearly $60 million tied up for 2012 in six players -- Matt Holliday, Kyle Lohse, Lance Berkman, Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright and Jake Westbrook. There's also the little matter of Pujols -- who will listen to offers from the Cardinals, but is unlikely to give much (or any) of a hometown discount. The team also needs a shortstop and could use another left-handed reliever.

West
Arizona Diamondbacks | R.I.P.
Needs: second base, middle infield, relief pitching
Money to spend? There's not much tinkering expected of a team that surprised everyone by winning the NL West in 2011 -- the rotation is looking good and most of the positions are already manned. The team declined its option on second baseman Aaron Hill, but could also look at former Diamondback second baseman Kelly Johnson. The bullpen was radically rebuilt last season, but could use some tweaking.

Colorado Rockies | R.I.P.
Needs: starting pitching, second base, third base
Money to spend? The team needs a starter and also two infield spots -- all without spending much money. They could be looking to trade to find their infielders and a lefty reliever. But they also need a pitcher that can throw 200 innings in a season, but those don't come cheap on the open market. They'd also like a right-handed bat.

Los Angeles Dodgers | R.I.P.
Needs:catcher, second base, third base, starting pitching, relief pitching
Money to spend? Who knows? With the Frank McCourt mess, nobody knows what the future holds for the Dodgers. If they are sold, the timing may still be off for any big additions to the budget. In a perfect world, the Dodgers are looking at the big names like Fielder, Reyes and Wilson, but it doesn't seem like that will happen.

San Diego Padres | R.I.P.
Needs: closer, relief pitching, corner outfield, middle infield
Money to spend? The Padres have money to spend and spots to fill -- but don't expect them to be wooing the big names. Big money in San Diego is still small money to the likes of the Phillies and Cubs. The highest-priced free agent likely to sign with San Diego is closer Heath Bell.

San Francisco Giants | R.I.P.
Needs: shortstop, corner outfielder
Money to spend? The Giants will spend for the right player, and Reyes may just be that player. Or Rollins. The team may also try to retain Carlos Beltran, but at his age and injury history, the Giants are unlikely to gamble with a multiyear contract.

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Posted on: October 31, 2011 10:43 pm
Edited on: October 31, 2011 10:58 pm
 

Monday brings plethora of option decisions

By Evan Brunell

As baseball readies for free agency, numerous decisions on options are being made. Those either free up players to hit the market or tie them to their 2011 club for one more season. Sunday's list is right here. Let's take a look at what happened Monday...

AMERICAN LEAGUE
NATIONAL LEAGUE
View the free-agent tracker here.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com