Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Mets Eliminate Marlins

     The Miami Marlins were eliminated from playoff contention by the New York Mets 5-2 on Wednesday night at Marlins Park. It was the final home game for the club this season as they finished with a 40-40 home record. New York(85-74) took two games of the three-game series between both clubs and are still in wild-card playoff contention.
     Miami(78-80) will not appear in the postseason for the 13rd consecutive year. The last time they appeared in the playoffs was in 2003 when they got the wild-card spot and later won their second World Series title. Only the Seattle Mariners have a longer streak in Major League Baseball of not making the playoffs going back to 2001.

Strikers Lose In Puerto Rico

     The Fort Lauderdale Strikers began a three-game road trip and fell to Puerto Rico FC 2-1 on Wednesday night at Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium. The Strikers play their next game on Sunday in New York against the Cosmos.
     Fort Lauderdale(4-7-5) came out with a fast start like they did in their previous home game against the Tampa Bay Rowdies. Amauri put in a tally just two minutes into the contest.
     Puerto Rico(3-6-8) responded late in the first half during the 41st minute when Tyler Rudy scored to tie the game at 1-1. Blijedi Bradic would get the game-winning goal in the 66th minute on a shot from long range.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Panthers Split Doubleheader Against Predators

     The Florida Panthers hosted a hockey doubleheader versus the Nashville Predators at BB&T Center in Sunrise on Thursday. The Panthers held the first doubleheader in NHL history on September 16, 2013 against the Predators. Florida hosted it again in 2014 and Nashville was the home team in the 2015 contest. 
     Florida won the first game by a score of 4-1. Dryden Hunt scored from the crease area with a shot past Marek Mazanec at 13:07 of the first period to give Florida a 1-0 lead. Jonathan Racine and Jonathan Ang were credited with the assists.
     The Panthers added to their margin 11 seconds into the third period as Greg McKegg skated to the high slot and fired a wrist shot by Jonas Gunnarsson. Ang made it 3-0 at 3:47 as he redirected the puck in the slot off a slapshot by Michael Downing from the left point. The Cats got a four-goal margin on a Jonathan Marchessault tally at 4:48 with assists from Shane Harper and Denis Malgin.
     Nashville got on the scoreboard at the midway point of the frame. James Neal snapped a shot from the low right circle for a power-play goal at 9:35.
     The second game began differently as Nashville moved up to a 1-0 advantage on the power play at 6:51 of the first period. Anthony Bitetto released a wrist shot from the top of the zone which was deflected in by Mikka Salomaki in the low slot past Roberto Luongo.
     The Preds pulled out to a 2-0 margin at 12:27. Bitetto put another shot on net and Pontus Aberg followed with a shot from close range. Florida was held to just one shot in the first 19 minutes and were outshot 9-3 after one period.
     The Cats cut the deficit to 2-1 with 2:03 remaining in the second period when Nashville turned the puck over around their net. Chase Balisy fed it from the right of the crease area to Paul Thompson in the slot area and he ripped a high shot by Mark Visentin.

Miami Ratings September 2016

     Miami Sports Radio 560 WQAM-AM finished ahead of their other two competitors as the top sports format radio station in the Miami/Fort Lauderdale region for the second straight month. They ended up being on top by themselves in consecutive months for the first time since from September 2015 until December 2015.
     WQAM saw a bump in their ratings from a 0.9 to a 1.0 in September. They started as the flagship station of the Miami Dolphins Radio Network and began to broadcast regular season games.
     790 The Ticket WAXY-AM bounced back from their worst ratings period last month since August 2013. They saw an increase from a 0.6 to a 0.7 this month. It was a big surprise that Chris Wittyngham decided to leave the afternoon co-host spot alongside Ethan Skolnick during the period.
     Miami Sports Radio 940 WINZ-AM had a 0.2 over the past two straight months and fell to a 0.1 in September. It will be interesting to see their results next month following the end of the Miami Marlins season and no Miami Dolphins game broadcasts for the first time since 2010.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Marlins Honor Jose Fernandez With Victory

     The Miami Marlins played their first game since the passing of pitcher Jose Fernandez and defeated the New York Mets 7-3 at Marlins Park on Monday night. The game started 15 minutes later than usual due to the pregame ceremony tribute to Jose Fernandez. All Marlins players and coaches wore Jose Fernandez number 16 black jerseys for the contest. Marlins management announced that nobody would ever wear the number 16 uniform again for the franchise.
     In the bottom of the first inning, Dee Gordon was the first Marlin to the plate and honored Fernandez by wearing his batting helmet and hitting right-handed on the first pitch. He changed batting helmets and switched to batting left-handed. Two pitches later he smashed a solo homer to right against Bartolo Colon for a Miami 1-0 lead. It was the first home run this season for Gordon.
     Miami(78-78) compiled a rally and added four more runs during the second inning. Giancarlo Stanton singled to center and Justin Bour hit a double off the top of the center-field fence. Stanton crossed the plate on an infield single to deep short by J.T, Realmuto. Adeiny Hechavarria drove in Bour with a ground-rule double to center to make it 3-0. Realmuto scored on a sacrifice by Adam Conley to the left side of the infield Gordon finished the rally with a base hit to center for Hechavarria to score.
     New York(83-74) surrendered another two runs in the bottom of the third. Christian Yelich led off with an infield hit and two batters later Bour followed with his first career triple to score Yelich. Hechavarria would eventually knock in Bour with a two-out single to center field when he faced Mets relief pitcher Gabriel Ynoa.
     The Mets broke the shutout during the fifth inning with two runs off Brian Ellington. Lucas Duda walked and Brandon Nimmo got a one-out hit. Two batters later, Asdrubal Cabrera doubled into right field to score Duda and Nimmo.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Jose Fernandez Dead At 24

     Miami Marlins starting pitcher Jose Fernandez passed away in a boating accident off Miami Beach early Sunday morning. The game at Marlins Park today between the Marlins and Atlanta Braves is canceled. The Miami Dolphins will hold a moment of silence at Hard Rock Stadium prior to the start of their game against the Cleveland Browns to honor the memory of Fernandez.
     It was a fine season for Fernandez in 2016 as he went 16-8, struck out 253 batters and had a 2.86 earned-run average. He last pitched at home on Tuesday night against the Washington Nationals in a 1-0 victory where he threw eight shutout innings, allowed three hits and had 12 strikeouts. He made the National League All-Star Team for the second time of his career during the 2016 campaign.
     Fernandez had a career record of 28-17 with 589 strikeouts and a 2.58 earned-run average in four seasons with the Marlins. He finished with a home pitching record at Marlins Park of 29-2.
   

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Rowdies Sweep Strikers In Florida Derby

     Georgi Hristov compiled the first hat trick in Rowdies modern-day NASL history as Tampa Bay pounded the Fort Lauderdale Strikers 4-1 in the Florida Derby at Central Broward Stadium on Saturday night. The Strikers had their seven-game unbeaten streak snapped and saw the Rowdies, who swept the season series, move ahead of them in the Coastal Cup standings by two points.
     Fort Lauderdale(4-6-5) started off quickly and scored during the fourth minute of play. Kleberson made a square pass to the middle and Ramon Nunez put in the ball from five yards away.
     Tampa Bay(5-6-4) evened the contest in the 15th minute when Joe Cole placed a crossing pass for Hristov to make a sliding kick in the middle of the field from eight yards out.
     The Rowdies, who improved their undefeated streak to five games, moved out to their first lead of the game at the 37th minute as Tommy Heinemann blasted a shot from long range. Hristov added to the 3-1 margin during the 43rd minute for a comfortable lead by halftime.
     There was just one goal between both clubs in the second half of the contest. That honor went to Hristov as he nailed his third goal of game during the 82nd minute on a ten-yard shot.