ESPN Opens MLB Spring Training Coverage Monday

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN kicks off its 2014 MLB Spring Training coverage next week.

The Worldwide Leader in Sports opens its coverage of Major League Baseball’s 2014 Spring Training Monday, March 17th.  It all starts with a rematch of the 2013 World Series Champion Boston Red Sox and reigning NL Champion St. Louis Cardinals.  Coverage of Monday’s game is scheduled to begin at 1pm ET on ESPN, WatchESPN and ESPN ESPN Deportes+.  Karl Ravech will anchor the broadcast.  He will be joined in the booth by Cincinnati Reds great and MLB Hall of Famer Barry Larkin, and reporter Tim Kurkjian for the broadcast.

Tuesday, the Red Sox and Yankees renew their rivalry yet again with 1pm ET game in New York.  Dan Shulman will have the call for Tuesday’s game.  Sunday Night Baseball’s Dan Shulman will anchor Tuesday’s broadcast.  He will be joined by analyst Jon Kruk and reporter Buster Olney.  And then on Thursday, March 20th, the Bosox and Yankees meet again, this time at Fenway Park.  Dan Shulman will have the call for that game, too.  It is scheduled for a 7pm ET start time.  He will be joined in the booth again by analyst Jon Kruk and reporter Buster Olney.  Both games will be broadcast on television on ESPN and online via WatchESPN.  Thursday’s game will also be available online via ESPNDeportes+.

ESPN opens its 2014 MLB Regular Season coverage Sunday, March 30th with a matchup of the Dodgers and Padres.  Coverage of that game is scheduled to start at 8pm ET.  More information on ESPN’s MLB coverage throughout 2014 is available online at http://espn.go.com/mlb.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Films Debuts Latest Addition To ’30 for 30 Shorts’ Series

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

New York Yankees star Alex “A-Rod” Rodriguez recently announced to the world that he was dropping his lawsuit against Major League Baseball linked his suspension from Major League Baseball.  Now, he is the focus of the latest installment in ESPN’s 30 for 30 Shorts series.

Rodriguez is the focal point of the new 30 for 30 short The Deal.  The latest short from ESPN Films’ series of shorts examines “A-Rod’s” trade from the Texas Rangers and how he almost ended up in red and grey instead of pinstripes.  The new short debuted this week at Grantland.com.  It can be viewed now via Grantland.com at http://grantland.com/features/30-for-30-shorts-the-deal/.  It was produced and directed by Nick and Colin Barnicle.  The pair incorporated interviews with the likes of Larry Lucchino, Brian Cashman, John Hart and Theo Epstein to illustrate the story.  It shows how much changed over the course of less than two days for not just Rodriguez, but also for both the Red Sox and Yankees.

Along with its online showing, The Deal will also be broadcast this Sunday night, Feb. 16th at 8pm on ESPN.  The broadcast comes on the tenth anniversary of the still discussed trade deal.  Other films in the 30 for 30 shorts are available for viewing online now at http://grantland.com/contributors/espn-films/.

More information on ESPN Films’ 30 for 30 Shorts and 30 for 30 is available online at http://www.facebook.com/espn30for30 and http://www.espn.com/30for30.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces Spring Training Coverage, Baseball Tonight Goodyear Express Tour Schedules

Courtesy: ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has announced the schedule for its coverage of Major League Baseball’s 2014 Spring Training games.

This year’s schedule kicks off with coverage of a rematch from last year’s World Series.  The Boston Red Sox will host the St. Louis Cardinals March 17th at Fenway Park.  First pitch is scheduled for 1pm.  The game will be carried on television on ESPN and online via Watch ESPN and ESPN Deportes+.    The ESPN family of networks’ complete seven-game Spring Training coverage schedule is available below.

Spring Training game schedule:

Date Time (ET) Game/Commentators Networks
Mon, March 17 1 p.m. St. Louis Cardinals at Boston Red Sox

Karl Ravech, Barry Larkin, Tim Kurkjian

ESPN,WatchESPN,ESPN Deportes +
Tue, March 18 1 p.m. Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees

Dan Shulman, John Kruk, Buster Olney

ESPN,WatchESPN
Thu, March 20 7 p.m. New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox

Dan Shulman, John Kruk, Buster Olney

ESPN,WatchESPN,ESPN Deportes +
Mon, March 24 1 p.m. Detroit Tigers at Pittsburgh Pirates

Adnan Virk, Doug Glanville, Tim Kurkjian

ESPN,WatchESPN,ESPN Deportes +
Tue, March 25 1 p.m. Atlanta Braves at Detroit Tigers
Adnan Virk, Doug Glanville, Tim Kurkjian
ESPN,WatchESPN,ESPN Deportes +
Wed, March 26 1 p.m. Washington Nationals at St. Louis Cardinals

Steve Levy, Eduardo Perez, Doug Glanville

ESPN,WatchESPN,ESPN Deportes +
Thu, March 27 12 p.m. Washington Nationals at New York Mets

Steve Levy, Eduardo Perez, Doug Glanville

ESPN,WatchESPN,ESPN Deportes +

 

Before the ESNP family of networks kick off their coverage of Major League Baseball’s 2014 Spring Training games, the Baseball Tonight Goodyear Express Tour will hit the road.  The tour will visit a number of teams’ camps beginning next Monday, February 17th at the Red Sox camp in Fort Myers, Florida.  Karl Ravech and Buster Olney will be on hand with coverage of the team’s preps for the 2014 season.  SportsCenter will have Baseball Tonight segments beginning at 9am ET each day.  Each segment will include interviews with players and managers as well as in-depth team analysis and discussions on every major off-season story lines.  Baseball fans can get even more in-depth coverage of the upcoming season online at ESPN.com.  Buster Olney, Jayson Stark, Jerry Crasnick, Keith Law, Jim Caple, and David Schoenfield will have reports from various camps in Florida and Arizona through the online home of the Worldwide Leader in Sports.  As an added bonus, ESPN.com will also offer baseball fans a Countdown Clock to Opening Day, videos from the Baseball Tonight Goodyear Express Tour, and a blog with daily posts.  The complete Baseball Tonight Goodyear Express Tour schedule is available below.

Baseball Tonight Goodyear Express Tourschedule:

Date Location Team/Commentators
Mon, Feb. 17 Fort Myers, Fla. Boston Red Sox

Karl Ravech, Buster Olney

Tue, Feb. 18 Lakeland, Fla. Detroit Tigers

Karl Ravech, Buster Olney

Wed, Feb. 19 Jupiter, Fla. St. Louis Cardinals

Karl Ravech, Buster Olney

Thu, Feb. 20 Viera, Fla. Washington Nationals

Karl Ravech, Buster Olney

Fri, Feb. 21 Tampa, Fla. New York Yankees

Karl Ravech, Buster Olney

Mon, Feb. 24 Glendale, Ariz. Los Angeles Dodgers

Karl Ravech, John Kruk, Tim Kurkjian

Tue, Feb. 25 Scottsdale, Ariz. San Francisco Giants

Karl Ravech, John Kruk, Tim Kurkjian

Wed, Feb. 26 Surprise, Ariz. Texas Rangers

Karl Ravech, John Kruk, Tim Kurkjian

Thu, Feb. 27 Tempe, Ariz. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

Karl Ravech, John Kruk, Tim Kurkjian

Fri, Feb. 28 Goodyear, Ariz. Cincinnati Reds

Karl Ravech, John Kruk, Tim Kurkjian

Sat, March 1 Peoria, Ariz. Seattle Mariners

Tim Kurkjian

 

More information on the ESPN family of networks’ upcoming MLB coverage is available online at http://www.facebook.com/ESPNBaseballTonight.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces Matchup For Last Sunday Night Baseball Broadcast Of 2013

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has made it official.  The “Sports Leader” has announced the matchup for the last game of its regular season coverage for 2013.  On Sunday, September 22nd, ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell will present a matchup of the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers.  The Red Birds are currently in the hunt for the National League Central Division as they come into the game.  They are looking to get back in the win column as they face the NL Central leading Pittsburgh Pirates this weekend in a three-game series beginning tonight.  The Brewers, the Cards’ NL Central foes, are in the basement right now.  They currently sit at 60-80 and are at 3-7 in their last ten games at the time of this posting.

ESPN’s Dan Shulman will anchor the 8pm broadcast.  He will be joined by analysts Orel Hershiser and Jon Kruk and reporter Buster Olney for commentary.  Broadcast of the game (and all ESPN Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell games) will be available on ESPN Radio with Jon Sciambi and analyst Chris Singleton.  ESPN Deportes will also carry the game with Ernesto Jerez, Luis Alfredo Alvarez, Guillermo Celis, and Ozzie Guillen.  All games will also be broadcast on ESPN Deportes Radio and online via WatchESPN.

Before the Cardinals and Brewers go head to head, the Los Angeles Dodgers will face off against The Cincinnati Reds tomorrow night, September 8th.  The Reds are currently in the hunt for a spot in the 2013 postseason.  And next Sunday, September 15th, the Yankees and Red Sox hit the field in the latest round of their ongoing battle.  All broadcasts of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell are preceded by Baseball Tonight at 7pm.

More information on Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell is available online at http://espn.go.com/mlb and http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.  And for all the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with all of the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces First Games For Network’s September Sunday Night Baseball Schedule

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN announced today three big games for its schedule of games in September on Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell.  The first of that trio of games pits Marlon Byrd and the New York Mets against Bryce Harper and the Washington Nationals in the nation’s capital on September 1st.  The National League showdown will air on ESPN2.  The second of the games will air Sunday, September 8th.  That game will feature a matchup between the currently streaking NL West leading Dodgers—led by Yasiel Puig—and Joey Votto and the Cincinnati Reds.  The third of the newly announced games features the latest round in one of the greatest rivalries in sports.  The Yankees head to hostile ground to face off against their hated foes at Fenway Stadium on Sunday, September 15th in an American League fight as the playoff races heat up.

All three games will be anchored by play-by-play veteran Dan Shulman.  Shulman will be joined by analysts Orel Hershiser and John Kruk and reporter Buster Olney.  All games will be simulcast on ESPN Radio affiliates nationwide.  ESPN Radio broadcasts of Sunday Night Baseball games are anchored by Jon Sciambi.  Sciambi will be joined by analyst Chris Singleton.  Spanish-speaking audiences can also catch the games on ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes Radio with Ernesto Jerez, Luis Alfredo Alvarez, Guillermo Celis, and Ozzie Guillen.  All broadcasts are also available online via WatchESPN.

Before September’s games, audiences will get to see the Yankees and Bosox go toe-to-toe yet again this weekend.  The teams will face off this Sunday, August 18th live from Fenway Park.

The current schedule of games on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell is listed below.  Each game is preceded by the network’s pre-game show, Sunday Night Baseball at 7pm ET.

Upcoming Sunday Night Baseball schedule:

Date Game
Aug. 18 New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox
Aug. 25 Boston Red Sox at Los Angeles Dodgers
Sept. 1 New York Mets at Washington Nationals
Sept. 8 Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds
Sept. 15 New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox

*An added note for viewers:  ESPN’s final Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast will be Sunday, September 22nd.

To keep up with the latest baseball on ESPN news, audiences can go online to http://espn.go.com/mlb or “Like” the ESPN Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.  And to keep up with all of the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces Two More Sunday Night Baseball Games

 

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has announced two more games to its current Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell schedule.  Network officials have announced that on Sunday, August 11th, the Dodgers will host the Tampa Bay Rays.  And on Sunday, August 18th, the most storied rivalry in baseball hits its latest round, when the Yankees head to Fenway to take on the Boston Red Sox. 

Each game’s broadcast begins at 8pm EST on ESPN.  Dan Shulman will host the broadcasts.  He will be joined by his broadcast team mates, analysts Orel Hershiser and John Kruk.  Reporter Buster Olney will provide commentary.  Games will be simulcast on ESPN Radio and ESPN Deportes with Jon Sciambi manning the mic for ESPN Radio.  He will be joined by analyst Chris Singleton.  The team of Ernesto Jerez, Luis Alfredo Alvarez, and Guillermo Celis will handle broadcast duties for ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes Radio.  Both games will also be available online via WatchESPN and the WatchESPN app.

This week’s matchup on Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell sees the NL Central leading St. Louis Cardinals on the road against the NL East leading Atlanta Braves.  And on August 4th, the Braves will be on the road against the Phillies.

Each broadcast of Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell is preceded by Baseball Tonight on ESPN at 7pm EST.  For more information on upcoming games, stats, and more on fans’ favorite teams, go online to http://espn.go.com/mlb/

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Let Them Wear Towels Premieres Next Tuesday In Nine For IX Series

Courtesy:  ESPN/espnW

Courtesy: ESPN/espnW

Next Tuesday, July 16th, ESPN will premiere the next film in its new Nine For IX series. Let Them Wear Towels is the latest in the film series.  It will air at 8pm.  The new film focuses on the challenges faced by female sports reporters as they struggled to make their own place in the largely male dominated world that is the professional sports locker room.  The film was co-directed by Annie Sundberg and Ricki Stern.  The core of the story centers on examples such as that of then twenty-five year old Boston Herald reporter Lisa Olsen’s sexual harassment case involving players with the New England Patriots and that of Sports Illustrated reporter Melissa Ludtke being barred from the New York Yankees’ clubhouse.

Olsen’s case rose as a result of Olsen being sexually harassed by members of the team, who exposed their genitals to her and made crass comments to her.  The 1990 case resulted in an investigation by the NFL.  It resulted in the finding that Olsen had in fact been “degraded and humiliated” by the players in question.  Despite her win in the case, fans of the Pats continued to chide her so harshly in public that she ended up moving all the way around the world to Australia for a period of time to restart her broadcasting career.

Melissa  Ludtke, who at the time worked for Sports Illustrated, faced her own turmoil as a female sports reporter.  She had been barred from entering the New York Yankees’ locker room over a decade ago..  Ludtke challenged the action by the Yankees organization and won.

Sundberg and Stern incorporate interviews with Ludtke, Olsen and many others within the sports universe in their examination of why the subject of female reports in the professional sports locker room remains such a hot button issue today.  The pair examines the history of women in the largely male dominated sports world as well in order to find out why this remains such an important topic even now in the twenty-first century.    This film, and all of the films in the Nine for IX series can be downloaded the day after their broadcast via iTunes and Amazon.  This October, there will be a special collectible gift set that includes all of the films in the Nine for IX series.  It will be available October 15th, 2013.

The complete Nine For IX schedule is listed below.

July 16: Let Them Wear Towels

 

July 23: No Limits

 

July 30: Swoopes

 

August 6: The Diplomat

 

August 13: Runner

 

August 20: The ‘99ers

 

August 27: Branded

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces Nominees For 2013 ESPYS, Voting Open Now

Courtesy: ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

The nominations are out and the voting has officially begun for this year’s annual ESPY Awards.  In preparation of the annual celebration, Pardon The Interruption hosts Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon will host The ESPY Nomination Special next Monday, July 1st at 8pm EST on ESPN2.  Among this year’s nominees are: Drew Brees, Miguel Cabrera, the Chicago Blackhawks, Olympic medal winner Gabby Douglas, Superbowl champion Joe Flaco of the Baltimore Ravens, and many, many more.

Voting for candidates is open now.  Voting for all categories except “Best Team” will close on the day of the show, Wednesday, July 17th at 9pm.  Fans can cast their vote for categories such as: “Best Male Athlete”, “Best Female Athlete”, “Best Championship Performance”, “Best Breakthrough Athlete” and many others.  Fans can vote online at http://www.ESPN.com/ESPYS up to the start of this year’s awards show.  The “Best Team” category is shifting this year to a Twitter exclusive vote at the beginning of the awards show.  Fans will be able to vote via Twitter throughout the show using hashtag #ESPYSBestTeam and the voter’s favorite team name.  vote from Twitter and ESPYS.com will be gathered at the show’s end to determine the winner of this category.

For more on the ESPYS, fans can go online to http://www.ESPN.com/ESPYS or the official ESPN Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces Another Addition To Sunday Night Baseball Schedule

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has announced the latest addition to its Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast schedule.   Officials with the “Sports Leader” have announced that on Sunday, June 30th, it will broadcast a matchup between Robinson Cano and the New York Yankees and Manny Machado and the Baltimore Orioles live in Baltimore.  Orel Hershiser, John Kruk, and reporter Buster Olney will join host Dan Shulman live beginning at 8pm EDT.

The game will broadcast live on ESPN on cable and online via WatchESPN.  It will also be available on ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio.  Jon Sciambi will host the broadcast on ESPN Radio.  He will be joined by analyst Chris Singleton.  Ozzy Guillen, Ernesto Jerez, Luis Alfredo Alvarez, and Guillermo Celis will have the call on ESPN Deportes.

Before that game though, ESPN will have an NL Central matchup between the division leading St. Louis Cardinals and The Cincinnati Reds.  Cincinnati is currently in a very tight points race with fellow NL Central foes, the Pittsburgh Pirates for second in the NL Central, and the National League overall.  Just behind the Reds and Pirates is Atlanta, which will be facing San Francisco on Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell on ESPN on June 16th.

The current lineup of games on the Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell schedule is available below.  Games for the remainder of July, as well as for August and September will be announced at a later time.  Fans can get the latest news on what those games will be on the official ESPN website at http://espn.go.com/mlb and via the official ESPN Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/ESPN.

Upcoming Sunday Night Baseball schedule:

Date Game
June 9 St. Louis Cardinals at Cincinnati Reds
June 16 San Francisco Giants at Atlanta Braves
June 23 Texas Rangers at St. Louis Cardinals
June 30 New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles
July 14 St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs
July 21 New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Yankees/Red Sox Rivalry Returning To ESPN, Angels & White Sox Face Off Tonight On ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball

Courtesy: ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

One of the biggest rivalries in sports re-ignites in its latest round Sunday, June 2nd.  David Ortiz and the Boston Red Sox will take on Robinson Cano and the New York Yankees will face off at 8pm that evening.  Dan Shulman will host the evening’s broadcast.  He will be joined by analysts Orel Hershiser and John Kruk.  Buster Olney will be on hand with commentary.

Tonight’s matchup pits the Los Angeles Angels against the Chicago White Sox in the “Windy City.”  Dan Shulman will host the evening’s broadcast along with his colleagues, Orel Hershiser, John Kruk and Buster Olney.  The game will be available across all ESPN platforms including:  ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Deportes Radio, WatchESPN and the WatchESPN app for mobile media.  Pre-game starts at 7pm tonight.  The ESPN Sunday Night Baseball Crew offered its thoughts on tonight’s games, which can be viewed right here.

Baseball Tonight analyst Aaron Boone on the C.J. Wilson- Chris Sale matchup:
With Jered Weaver down, C.J. Wilson needs to assume the head of this rotation. They need to be able to hang their hat on his starts and count on him to be close to an ace. Sale needs to get his slider down. While he’s been pretty good, he hasn’t quite been the dominant ace. I’ve seen a little bit of slider elevation from him. If he can get that pitch down, he’s an ace.

Baseball Tonight analyst Alex Cora on Wilson:
I think that the key storyline is C.J. Wilson. We’ve been talking about the Angels being a contender and Weaver being hurt. Here’s a guy that they signed last year to either be their ace or their number two and he hasn’t done it. For them to turn this around, they need him to pitch the way he’s capable of pitching.

MLB Insider Buster Olney on the Angels’ struggles this season:
Early in every season, there are a handful of teams that quickly move into desperation mode, and little more than a month into the 2013 season, that’s where the Angels stand. They cannot afford to lose more ground, and even though it’s May, this team of great stars will be playing with a sense of urgency. The Angels can turn it around, but because of the lack of depth in the pitching staff, the impetus for a comeback has to come from their offensive stars: Mike Trout, Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton and Mark Trumbo.

MLB Insider Tim Kurkjian on the Angels facing Sale:
This is a big weekend series, especially for the Angels. They are in danger of falling out of the race in the West unless they start winning immediately. Their come-from-behind win Thursday night might be the spark that finally gets this team going but they are up against Chris Sale on Sunday night. I don’t know how anyone gets a hit off of that guy.

Olney on Sale’s delivery and repertoire:
Chris Sale is a one-of-a-kind pitcher, with an unusual delivery, and a nasty slider.  I think  Orel made a fascinating comparison: Sale reminds you a lot of the former Yankees Cy Young winner Ron Guidry, because of the quality of his slider and his angular build.

ESPN MLB Insider Pedro Gomez on the Angels’ struggles:
The Angels cannot afford to continue to spin their wheels and expect to remain in the AL West race. They need pitching to really start to shine and they absolutely need more production from their two cogs in the middle of their order, Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton.

Cora on Hamilton’s plate discipline:
He needs to take a step back. We get it, he’s an aggressive hitter. But right now, he’s getting 0-2 pitches in the first pitch of the at-bat. They know he’s swinging. They aren’t even trying to get ahead of him. They are going to the put-out pitch on pitch one because he’s swinging. He needs to be more patient. He has two home runs in last few days but still he needs to take some pitches. The whole league knows that he’s been very aggressive and chasing a lot. He must take a step back and see some good pitches.

ESPN MLB Insider Jim Bowden on keys for the Angels to improve:
The Angels can turn it around but they have to stay healthy. There is not enough depth to withstand injuries, as we’ve seen to date. Hamilton and Pujols must get back to MVP form. The key to the team will be the starting rotation. Blanton and Hanson have to be good enough to win 12 games and pitch 180 innings. A trade for more pitching is a must. Hamilton’s not loading and his timing is not in sync. If he corrects those two flaws he will hit. His bat speed is still there. He also must improve his strike zone awareness and cut down at swinging at balls out of the zone which is at a poor rate of 49%.

Boone on the struggling power hitters in both lineups:
If these teams are going to live up to expectations, their big guys in the middle have to get it going. We need to see production from Konerko and Dunn for the White Sox and Hamilton and Pujols with the Angels.

Cora on White Sox Manager Robin Ventura:
It’s Robin’s second year, so right now it’s his team. Obviously last year he had a great season. They made some changes and lost A.J. So, I think now he’s settled in. It has been a tough month for them, so let’s see what kind of manager he is. Last year, they kind of lost it at the end in September and they seem to be in the same pattern now. We need to see what kind of manager he will be.

Next Sunday on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, the Tigers head to the Lone Star State to take on the Rangers.  The latest Sunday Night Baseball schedule is available below.

Upcoming Sunday Night Baseball schedule:

Date Game
May 12 Los Angeles Angels at Chicago White Sox
May 19 Detroit Tigers at Texas Rangers
May 26 Atlanta Braves at New York Mets
June 2 Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees
July 14 St. Louis Cardinals at Chicago Cubs
July 21 New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox
   

*Additional games for June and July will be announced three weeks in advance, while games for August and September will be made two weeks in advance.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.