Early Signs of Doom for MLB’s Expected 2019 Contenders

The 2019 Major League Baseball season has only been going for three weeks and change, but the expected status quo is already in jeopardy.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

To wit, a few teams that were expected to be heavy hitters in the American League and National League playoff races are off to slow starts that are laced with signs of lasting doom.

We will focus on seven in particular, plus a few dishonorable mentions. These teams have been worse than anticipated out of the gate, with flaws that run the gamut from offensive, defensive and pitching problems to plain ol’ injury issues.china nike nfl jerseys cheap

We’ll start in the AL East and work our way to the NL West.

Record: 12-10, 2nd in AL East

Relative to the 100 games they won in 2018, the New York Yankees’ early record is a massive disappointment. Considering who occupies their injured list, it could be worse.

Currently out of commission for the Yankees are outfielders Aaron Judge,cheap nfl nike jerseys from china  Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Hicks and Jacoby Ellsbury, infielders Didi Gregorius, Miguel Andujar, Troy Tulowitzki and Greg Bird, catcher Gary Sanchez and pitchers Luis Severino, Dellin Betances, Ben Heller and Jordan Montgomery.

What’s more, many of these injuries are of the serious variety. Per the official MLB.com tracker, only Stanton and Sanchez are expected back before the end of April.nike nfl cheap jerseys
The big concern right now is how long Judge, a two-time All-Star and elite power supply, will be out with the oblique injury he sustained on Saturday. Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters it’s a “pretty significant” injury.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap
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These injuries hardly constitute a roster construction flaw, yet they’re nonetheless a harsh reality that New York has to deal with. This season will be a success story only if the Yankees ultimately rise above their current .500-ish pace.nfl cheap jerseys nike

Record: 9-13, 4th in AL East

The Boston Red Sox’s starting rotation has been knocked around, yet hope has materialized. Per MLB.com’s Dawn Klemish, Boston starters went from an 8.79 through their first 13 games to a 3.21 ERA over their next nine. cheap nike nfl jerseys from china

Now it’s the Boston offense’s turn to get going, because this isn’t pretty:

2018: .792 OPS and 5.4 R/G
2019: .691 OPS and 4.2 R/G

Apart from J.D. Martinez and Mitch Moreland, nobody is free from blame for the Red Sox’s offensive downfall. That includes reigning AL MVP Mookie Betts, who’s gone from a 1.078 OPS to a pedestrian .783. In his own words, what he’s doing is “unacceptable.”nike jerseys nfl cheap

The guys in the Red Sox’s lineup also need to shape up on the other side of the ball. The club’s defense ranks 24th in efficiency, rooted in some truly sloppy play.

It should bode well that the Red Sox have carried over essentially the same lineup that led the charge to 108 wins and a World Series title in 2018. But there’s clearly a hangover effect in play right now, and such things have been known to last.

Tobias Harris Is the NBA’s Swiss Army Knife

Tobias Harris had a gut feeling he would be traded. He didn’t have any information a week before the Feb. 7 trade deadline to suggest the Los Angeles Clippers would ship him out, but after he’d been traded four times before, a move felt imminent.buy nfl jerseys online

“I just felt the vibe,” Harris says. “It’s weird to describe, but it’s all about the situation, time, place and dynamic. I saw where we were as a team, and I just felt something was happening behind the scenes. And the deal happened.”cheap nfl jersey store

He felt so strongly about his intuition that he told forward Mike Scott and later teammates Avery Bradley and Tyrone Wallace his thoughts at dinner after a loss to the Raptors. “A trade is going to happen, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I’m in it,” Harris said. They didn’t believe anything would happen.
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Two days later, fresh off hitting a game-winner against the Hornets, Harris was watching Netflix when he got the call. Doc Rivers informed him he had been traded to the 76ers.

The experience wasn’t new to Harris, now on his fifth team in eight seasons. When the Bucks traded him to the Magic in February 2013, Harris was working out and saw the news flash on the gym’s television before he received the call. nike nfl jerseys sale He was taking a nap when the Magic sent him to the Pistons in February 2016. He woke up to missed calls and texts. Harris was in his Detroit home watching film on the next opponent, the Cavaliers, when Stan Van Gundy informed him he was headed to the Clippers in January 2018.authentic nfl jerseys from china

Harris has been a significant trade asset due to his work ethic, yearly improvement and reputation as the consummate teammate. But rarely has he been considered a core piece, which has discouraged him in his quest to find a stable situation.nfl authentic jerseys china

“I go about my game in a different way—a way where I just handle my business,” Harris says. cheap personalized nfl jerseys

“People sleep on me for sure.”nfl jerseys official

He’s found the perfect fit in Philadelphia, among an organization and fanbase that has quickly embraced his unselfish, Swiss Army knife brand of basketball. Though he will become an  cheap baby nfl jerseys unrestricted free agent this summer, Harris will play a nfl best jerseys  significant role in Philadelphia’s title hopes this postseason alongside Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons and Jimmy Butler.

Biggest NFL Offseason Questions That Will Be Answered in the Draft

The draft is the cause of and solution to all of the NFL’s problems.

The offseason is filled with trigger events that change the league’s overall complexion. The draft is the most important, ahead of free agency and the start of the new league year even though all three precipitate plenty of player movement. nfl china jerseys

Free agency and the draft form a symbiotic relationship. The first is considered a way to supplement a team’s roster, while the latter is how a team builds its foundation and talent core.

Franchises can spend frivolously in free agency my cheap nfl jerseys to address areas of need, but those players often serve as placeholders, not stars. Stars are found in the draft.

Organizations make draft mistakes all the time in hopes high-level potential turns into professional production. The mere possibility of development is alluring.

Whereas a disciplined approach to nfl womens jerseys  evaluation brings an understanding of individual assessment, team needs and overall fit.nfl jerseys authentic cheap

That’s the goal: The draft solves a team’s biggest problem and turns a weakness into a strength. Multiple franchises still have significant questions that won’t be answered until they reveal their approach to the draft April 25-27 in Nashville, Tennessee.  nfl jerseys authenticf9a91397a3abdbce1dc06d019cd11372_crop_exact

There’s no better place to start than the very first pick of the draft, where the Arizona Cardinals have a franchise-defining decision to make. nike nfl jerseys for sale

Josh Rosen or Kyler Murray?nfl jerseys cheap collection

The organization must decide which of these two young quarterbacks best fits its long-term vision with Kliff Kingsbury as its new head coach.

Maybe the decision is already made. nfl cheap jerseys china

Fox Sports draft analyst Joel Klatt stated during an appearance on Fox Sports 1’s Undisputed that Rosen is “gonna get moved,” with the Los Angeles Chargers, New England Patriots and New York Giants showing the most interest. Klatt went a step further and said a firm second-round offer is already on the table.

If that’s the case, the trade isn’t an indictment of the 22-year-old Rosen. He’s simply not the right quarterback for the situation. He can go elsewhere and still blossom into a franchise-caliber signal-caller. cheap official nfl jerseys

But that point has yet to be reached because the Cardinals want a first-round pick in return, according to Klatt. Rosen may be the team’s quarterback right now, but the love for Murray is apparent.

“It’s more what don’t you like,” Kingsbury said at the nfl jerseys for sale cheap  owners meetings, per Pro Football Talk’s Charean Williams. “When you watch him play, he can run it; he can throw it; he’s a competitor. …cheap nfl jerseys cheap shipping  He is one of the better dual-threat players to ever play.”

Kyrie Irving

First, Kyrie Irving was in, telling Boston Celtics season-ticket holders in October, “If you guys will have me back, I plan on re-signing here.”cheap womens nfl jerseys

Then, he wasn’t necessarily out, but the depth of commitment he expressed in earlier comments seemed…shallower.

“Ask me July 1,”nfl jersey store  he told reporters when questioned about his free agency in February. And then, as if begging for nonstop aggregation, he said, “I don’t owe anybody s–t.”

Irving can opt out of his contract this summer and should expect max offers from the Knicks and Celtics. If he stays put, Boston could trade for Anthony Davis, who’d probably be more likely to re-sign in 2020 if Irving were locked into a deal as his running mate. If Irving bolts, Boston might not want to risk trading what it would take to get Davis without any assurance of keeping him long term.hi-res-7ca8e7e6b71441b1f2f4ec7409fd24ea_crop_exact

Suffice it to say nfl jerseys cheap jerseys  the Celtics are heavily incentivized to re-sign Irving if they can.my cheap nfl jerseys

Irving has been only intermittently supportive of teammates from the bench this year, sometimes appearing engaged, others visibly frustrated.

In early March, The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor reported:

“Sources around the team told me that Irving’s persona has changed too: He’s become disengaged and detached from those around the team. There is talk that Irving’s friendships on the team start and end with [Jayson] Tatum, with whom he shares an agent. Two sources peg Irving’s change in demeanor to early February, around the time he was asked about the possibility of joining the New York Knicks next season.”nfl womens jerseys

The mercurial Irving will head into free agency with several options available to him. Good luck trying to guess his plans.nfl jerseys authentic

Prediction: Irving joins Durant in New York on a max contract.

Kevin Durant

Since before the 2018-19 season started, Kevin Durant’s free agency has been on center stage.

“I feel like I belong here. I feel like I mix with this team, I mesh with this team well,” Kevin Durant told Nick Friedell ofWarriors Media Day in October. “With that being said, I really don’t know what’s going to happen this summer.”authentic nfl jerseys cheap china5eb4d0efd6015ef7b8acd436b2f91c29_crop_exact

That non-commitment ignited a spark that grew into a conflagration when Durant and Draymond Green got into a heated on-court argument in November. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Green raised KD’s impending free agency during the shouting match, which had been a “simmering issue” with the team.

“With what was said, there is already no  nfl nike jersey way Durant is coming back,” one player told The Athletic’s Marcus Thompson II shortly afterward.

Things calmed down after that, but Durant has been annoyed by the media’s free-agency fixation all season. After the Knicks traded Kristaps Porzingis, clearing the way for major offseason signings, he mentioned them unprompted.

Earlier in March, a blowout loss to the Celtics triggered more unrest.nfl jerseys nike

“There are members of the organization concerned that Durant’s behavior is a sign that he’s already got one foot out the door,” Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes reported.authentic nfl jersey cheap

“He’s part of [the team] right now,”where can i get nfl jerseys cheap  Green told The Athletic’s Sam Amick about Durant’s free agency. “Whatever happens this summer happens. Whatever the hell he do, he does. If he go, he go. If he stay, he stay. But while he’s here, we’re going to win another championship. It’s just that simple. Nothing else matters.”

Way back in June 2018, general manager Bob Myers told reporters Durant could have “whatever he wants” on his next contract with the team. Based on the last several months, it’s impossible to be sure Durant wants anything at all from the Warriors.women nfl jerseys

This is a “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” situation. And there is an awful lot of smoke.nfl cheap jersey

Prediction: Durant signs a max contract with the Knicks.

Offseason Predictions for NBA Superstars Most Likely to Change Teams

There are several different approaches to team building in the NBA, but every one of them boils down to acquiring superstar talent. Whether through the draft, authentic nfl jerseys china free agency or trade, organizations that plan to compete for a championship  nfl jersey sale know they need to get ahold of premium players.

Several will be on the move this summer, nfl official jersey and that means the league-wide power structure is about to endure a significant shakeup.

The transactional side of the NBA is now as newsworthy as the games themselves. The players on this list have all been the subject of rumors since before the 2018-19 season tipped off, so their presence here is no surprise. The only unexpected result would be if one or two of them actually stayed put.5eb4d0efd6015ef7b8acd436b2f91c29_crop_exact

Based on team situation, reporting throughout the year and a little gut instinct, these are the superstars most likely to be sporting different jerseys come October 2019.

The easiest way to explain Anthony Davis’ inclusion here would be to say: “Please refer to anything that happened after Jan. 28, 2019, which is when ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported AD’s trade request.”where to get nfl jerseys cheap

In light of the back-and-forth leaks from the Lakers and Pelicans between the request and the trade deadline and the charade of New Orleans playing Davis sporadically ever since, the greatest obstacle to getting AD out of town may be the lack of exit routes. He’s already torched every bridge, which, if you’re going to do that, you should at least wait until you’ve crossed them.china nfl jerseys cheap

Giants Lead, but Multiple NFL Teams in Dwayne Haskins Sweepstakes After Pro Day

Only the most aggressive NFL organization will be fortunate enough to land Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The idea an elite prospect at the game’s most important position will slide beyond this year’s top 10 draft selections is folly. 2019 new nfl jerseyshi-res-6c8e227005276eb2cddfe8b81ac3cd50_crop_north

“It’s a massive decision,” New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman said at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, per NorthJersey.com’s Art Stapleton. “I mean this is the face of your franchise. He’s got to do all the right stuff for all the right reasons. You can’t go to bed at night worrying if he’s gonna come in on time. You can’t do that, no matter how talented they are.”

Haskins is a traditional pocket passer with the production, pedigree and skill set worthy of franchise consideration. He crushed two throwing sessions, first at the combine and then at Wednesday’s pro day in Columbus, Ohio. While working under the assumption the Arizona Cardinals will select Kyler Murray with the first overall pick, the free-for-all to land the other elite signal-caller should be wild. cheap new nfl jerseys

Three teams are prime candidates to make a move for Haskins. The Giants, Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins own top-15 selections. One will almost certainly be forced to trade into the top five for a chance to select the Big Ten Conference’s new nfl football jerseys 2019  all-time single-season leader in passing yards and touchdown tosses.

How teams will go about making such a significant decision varies, though. the new nfl jerseys

Two different strategies are often utilized weeks before the actual draft: Either a smokescreen is laid by disinterested teams, or the simpler “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” option portends heavy interest in a prospect. nfl jerseys new The difficulty arises when attempting to decipher which tactic individual teams are using because every franchise is trying to throw the 31 other organizations off its scent.are the new nfl jerseys stitched new nfl nike jersey

The upcoming draft class isn’t like last year’s. Five different quarterbacks held first-round grades. Each became a rookie starter and flashed.

Right now, Murray and Haskins lead the group, and a significant drop-off occurs in their wake. If Murray is already off the board with the initial pick, multiple teams must vie for Haskins’ services or be left at the altar. No team wants to be in a position in which a long-term quarterback plan isn’t in place.

Ex-Raiders TE Jared Cook Nearing Contract with New Orleans

The New Orleans Saints are “nearing” a deal with free-agent tight end Jared Cook, according to Pro Football Talk on Wednesday.

NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero new nfl jerseys reported Thursday morning that “the Saints are expected” to sign Cook.

The 31-year-old veteran is coming off the first Pro Bowl selection of his career.new nfl jerseys nikehi-res-f3485266d4b0fbea0cb2e897b5737622_crop_north

Cook recorded career highs in receptions (68), yards (896) and touchdowns (six) with the Oakland Raiders in 2018. He led the team in all three categories, although running back Jalen Richard tied him in 68 catches.new nfl jerseys 2019

Per Pro Football Focus, Cook recorded the fifth-highest receiving grade (81.5) among tight ends a season ago.

Last season wasn’t a fluke, though. new nike nfl jerseys He has been a productive pass-catcher throughout his career.

The South Carolina Gamecock has averaged 48 receptions for 629 yards and three scores since establishing himself in 2011 with Tennessee. The Georgia native has put those numbers up even while moving from team to team nike new nfl jerseys , as he has also suited up for St. Louis and Green Bay.new nfl jersey

New Orleans, meanwhile, needed to address the tight end position following the retirement of Benjamin Watson. Earlier this offseason, the Saints signed Garrett Griffin from the practice squad and Nate Wozniak to a reserve/futures contract.new nike nfl jersey  That provided the team with options at the position, but neither has Cook’s track record.new nfl nike jerseys

The addition of Cook should help a passing attack that ranked 12th last year. More importantly, it gives the team another playmaker to utilize as it looks to avenge last season’s controversial NFC new nike nfl jerseys wholesale  title game loss.

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S Damarious Randall, Cleveland Browns

Not every player is afforded the luxury of playing the position for which he’s best suited. Take Damarious Randall, for instance, who spent the past three seasons playing cornerback after the Green Bay Packers chose him with a first-round pick in 2015.

Randall played safety for the Arizona State Sun Devils, but his lack of size (5’11”, 196 pounds) and previous cornerback experience made him an intriguing option to change positions. However, he was never fully invested in the switch.  nfl nike jerseys cheap china

During an interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio (via Dawgs by Nature’s Chris Pokorny), Randall said he didn’t enjoy watching tape as a cornerback, as he had to focus exclusively on wide receivers. Instead, he said he “likes to see the whole play.”nike jerseys nfl cheap

In March, the Packers traded Randall to the Cleveland Browns, who have already moved him to free safety.

Randall’s sideline-to-sideline speed and ball skills will allow Jabrill Peppers to move to strong safety. That will give defensive coordinator Gregg Williams a highly athletic duo to utilize in numerous different looks.  cheap nike nfl jerseys from china

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CB Eli Apple, New York Giants

Eli Apple floundered under the direction of former New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo after the team selected him 10th overall in 2016. His career with the organization appeared to be over after a suspension for conduct detrimental to the team ended his 2017 campaign.

A new staff brings a different approach.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

“You hear things,” new Giants head coach Pat Shurmur said in May, per Newsday’s Tom Rock, “but I’m sure glad that I truly believe in a clean slate. He’s been nothing but professional, he’s been out here competing, he’s one of the guys that has been nike cheap nfl jerseys here almost every single day and I haven’t seen anything that somebody might have thought I heard. He’s been great.”

While Apple’s maturity has been brought into question, his natural ability hasn’t. At 6’1″ and 201 pounds, the 22-year-old defensive back is fluid in coverage and has the size to handle bigger receivers.

“In terms of his stature, his skill set, yeah, nike nfl cheap jerseys he’s what you’re looking for,” Shurmur added.

Apple came into the league at 20 years old and seemed to be overwhelmed by the transition. Now heading into his third season with a more understanding staff, his play could help overhaul his reputation.