Would a shortened season benefit Sharks?


Would a shortened season benefit Sharks?

In the realm of sports (and corresponding labor negotiations), anything can happen. That's why nobody can ever guarantee a certain thing... but one can make quality educated predictions by playing the percentages. Without further delay; lets begin:

Chances U.S. federal mediators help end the lockout within a week:
Yes: 5
No: 95
Explanation: You're talking about two sides that are at bitter odds. Players and the league have entertained many of the same conversations, over and over, for almost 150 days of negotiations. Not to mention, mediation was a last-ditch effort in the previous lockout, which still didn't prevent the loss of a season. The process will likely take appropriate time to hear both parties, identify problems, and gather information... before the moderated bargaining even begins. The only noticeable difference I predict with mediation is the frequency and duration of meetings.

RELATED: US federal mediators to join NHL talks

Chances of 60 games played if the lockout is resolved:
Yes: 40
No: 60
Explanation: Lets do quick math assuming a (very) best case scenario that the NHL resumes at Christmas. You'd have 15 weeks between then and mid-April in order to begin a full playoff schedule. This means teams would have to play four nights a week (consistently) for all 15 weeks to reach 60. Logistically, with travel considerations, it might be possible. But it will be an unbelievable drain on players to battle injuries, sickness, and health. Yes, the NBA put players on the floor three nights in a row last year, but I don't believe the NHL would have great results doing the same.

Chances there will be any NHL season in 2012-2013:
Yes: 50
No 50
Explanation: I've been set on declaring this 5050 split for the last month. However I feel strongly, if there are any more cancellations (past December 15th), the optimism will be reduced to a tune of 40. If there are any additional delays after January 1st, I'm dropping down to 25. What most often neglect, is that even when the two sides come close to an agreement, there will be at least several days of lawyers finalizing all the paperwork, followed by another 7-14 days of training camps and exhibition games. This is a race against time, which has a forgotten delay of almost 3 weeks.

Chances the Sharks will benefit from a shortened season:
Yes: 70
No: 30
Explanation: San Jose was the 8th eldest team in the NHL last year, and even with changes, the current roster won't fluctuate that figure greatly. However, less games, and coming very "fresh" into a quick season could initially benefit a lot of other teams too. The real advantage is that San Jose had little turnover on the ice, so in a condensed training camp, things could theoretically go smoother and lead to a quicker start. The only logistical disadvantage are incorporating two new assistant coaches; but that should be minimized by using this current down-time wisely alongside head coach Todd McLellan.

Bullpen implodes after Cain goes five solid, Giants crushed by Padres

Bullpen implodes after Cain goes five solid, Giants crushed by Padres


SAN FRANCISCO -- Wil Myers hit a three-run homer to cap San Diego's eight-run sixth inning and the Padres rallied to beat the San Francisco Giants 12-4 on Saturday night.

Myers also singled off Chris Stratton (1-0) to start the big inning and had three hits for the game. San Diego scored 11 runs against the Giants' bullpen following five effective innings from starter Matt Cain.

Allen Cordoba added a three-run homer off Neil Ramirez in the seventh.

The Padres combined for six hits and two walks off Stratton and Ramirez in the sixth. It took the duo 46 pitches to end the inning.

Jhoulys Chacin (3-3) struck out six and gave up three runs, five hits and two walks in five innings.

Triggs rebounds as A's halt 10-game losing streak to Astros

Triggs rebounds as A's halt 10-game losing streak to Astros

HOUSTON — Andrew Triggs keeps checking off all the right boxes in his first season as a major league starting pitcher.

Coming into the year, manager Bob Melvin said the right-hander’s biggest challenge would be retiring lefty hitters. He’s done that splendidly.

On Saturday, the A’s needed to see if Triggs could bounce back after his first rough outing of 2017. He responded with the best of his 11 career starts, holding a potent Astros lineup off the scoreboard for seven innings as the A’s registered a 2-1 victory that snapped their five-game losing streak.

The effective cutter that eluded Triggs when he lost to the Mariners last Sunday was back. Houston’s hitters waved helplessly at the pitch and began their walk back to the dugout all in the same motion, as Triggs rang up a career-high nine strikeouts. His seven innings also were a career high for the 28-year-old.

“We’re not really swinging the bats right now,” Melvin said. “We score two runs and we’re facing a lineup that you expect to score a bunch of runs. So to pitch as well as he did and go through the lineup three times, give us seven innings of work, is pretty good.

“He had the one off-outing, and every outing (besides that) has been pretty spotless.”

Triggs, whose 1.84 ERA ranks seventh in the American League, doesn’t blow people away with his fastball. He throws from a three-quarters arm slot that suggests it might be easy for left-handed hitters to pick up the ball out of his hand. Last season, the batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage were all roughly 40 to 50 points higher for lefties than for righties off Triggs.

All he’s done coming out of the gate this season is hold lefties to an .087 batting average (4-for-46). Another revealing stat: Opposing cleanup hitters are 0-for-14 off him.

Triggs credited catchers Stephen Vogt, Josh Phegley and, when he’s been up with the big club, Bruce Maxwell for their expertise in calling pitches against lefties.

“They’ve done such a good job keeping the sequences unpredictable,” he said. “You command pitches, you’re gonna get guys out. I know the stereotype is when you throw from the angle that I do, you’re gonna struggle with lefties. I’ve been aware, at least of that profile, for a while. I’ve worked on it quite a bit.”

Triggs had his entire repertoire working Saturday, according to Vogt.

“He was keeping them off-balance. Even when it seemed they were starting to sit on his slider, he starts sneaking some heaters by them. He was outstanding.”

But he had help. First baseman Yonder Alonso made a terrific leaping grab of Josh Reddick’s liner in the fifth that might have gone for extra bases. An inning before that, Jaff Decker made an on-the-money throw to third from deep right field to nail Carlos Beltran tagging up on a fly ball.

“He’s got a good arm so don’t sleep on him at all,” Triggs said.

Given how their month has gone, it’s no surprise the A’s got both their runs on homers. They’ve gone deep 31 times in April, their most homers in the month since they clubbed 34 in 2006. Lowrie, who’s spent two stints with the Astros and owns an offseason home in Houston, went deep to right to give the A’s a 1-0 lead. Khris Davis mashed his 10th homer in the eighth for what wound up being an important insurance run when Jose Altuve followed with a homer off Sean Doolittle.

Davis’ teammates by now are accustomed to seeing the left fielder flaunt his opposite-field power. He’s hit three homers this series, all to straightaway right or right-center.

Said Lowrie: “I think at this point it’s fair to call it special.”