Tag Archives: bill annechino

Perception vs Reality: Blake Bortles and NFL Fandom

Despite his early career struggles, is Blake Bortles career savable? (Getty Images)

Despite his early career struggles, is Blake Bortles career savable? (Getty Images)

– bill annechino

Nine.  That’s the number of games Blake Bortles has played in which he did not throw an interception.  Six.  That’s the number of games in which Bortles was sacked six or more times.  One.  That’s the number of games Bortles has played in which he did not get sacked.  By this point, a lot of people feel that the book has been written on Bortles, and that he is not a viable NFL quarterback.  The truth is that the Jaguars are probably stuck with him for at least one more year before it becomes financially viable to cut ties with Bortles.  Obviously, the most important question to answer is:  How much is Blake Bortles to blame for the Jaguars’ struggles?   Continue reading

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The Flagrant Foul’s MLB Awards

LA's Corey Seager had an incredible first season. (Getty Images)

LA’s Corey Seager had an incredible first season. (Getty Images)

– Bill Annechino

By the time you read this column, the MLB will have handed out its Rookie of the Year and Cy Young Awards, with the Most Valuable Player to follow.  As is always the case with awards, some people will think the committee nailed it, while others will take issue with some, or all, of the selections.  My goal here is to take an unbiased look at the candidates and winners, and try to figure out where the selection committee was right, and where they fell short.  All statistics for this column come courtesy of Fangraphs, unless otherwise noted.   Continue reading

They Are Who We Think They Are: The NFL Luck Factor Revisited

 

There's nothing lucky about what the Ravens are doing this season; being perfectly average.

There’s nothing lucky about what the Ravens are doing this season; being perfectly average. (Getty Images)

– Bill Annechino 

A few weeks back, I took a look at some of the luckiest teams in the NFL, based on their projected win-loss record and their Pythagorean Win Expectations. Well, now that we are past the midway point of the season, I figured I would approach this a little differently. There are still a few outliers to discuss, but I’d rather look at the teams that are exactly who we think they are; the teams that are performing pretty much exactly how we should expect them to. Continue reading

The Definitive MLB Free Agency Preview

Aroldis Chapman is a World Series Champion and is about to get a whole hell of a lot richer. (Getty Images)

Aroldis Chapman is a World Series Champion and is about to get a whole hell of a lot richer. (Getty Images)

– Bill Annechino

With the Hot Stove season of MLB about to start, I figured this would be as good a time as any to offer a free agent primer.  I wanted my primer to be a little different than the typical Listicles that you will find in that I will not be ranking my free agents by traditional “slash line” stats or the Triple Crown stats.  Instead, I am focusing on advanced stats.  For hitters, this means I will be looking at weighted on base average (wOBA), park-adjusted weighted runs created (wrc+), batting average on balls in play (BABIP), and wins above replacement (fWAR).  For pitchers, those statistics are going to be park-adjusted expected fielding independent pitching (xFIP-), batting average on balls in play (BABIP) and wins above replacement (fWAR), of which the “f” signifies that it is the Fangraphs stat, as every statistics outlet calculates WAR somewhat differently.  Since I’m a great guy and I want you, the reader, to have a more nuanced understanding of baseball for having read my article, I’ll take a second to explain these statistics.  For the purposes of this column, all statistics and terminologies are via Fangraphs.com, which is a website that you should be reading and using, if you aren’t already. Continue reading

Michigan’s Talented Mr. Peppers: He’s Done It All In College but What Position Should He Play at the Next Level?

Jabrill Peppers has the skill and athleticism to play all over the field, but at which position will he be most valuable?

Jabrill Peppers has the skill and athleticism to play all over the field, but at which position will he be most valuable?

– Bill Annechino

If you have been watching college football this season, or even if you’re a casual football fan on the outside, chances are that you’ve heard of Jabrill Peppers, Michigan’s do-it-all Heisman candidate. Peppers is possibly the ideal embodiment of the “positionless football” revolution; a guy who has lined up at outside linebacker, safety, offensive weapon and returned kicks. According to information from the University of Michigan Athletic Department, Peppers has lined up in 12 different positions this season. So, the question on everyone’s mind is: what position will he play in the NFL? Continue reading

The Flagrant Foul’s Top 5 Baseball Games Ever and a NFL Week 9 Preview

While you were dodging frozen pigs and escaping from a frozen hell, the impossible happened: the Cubs won the World Series.

While you were dodging frozen pigs and escaping from a frozen hell, the impossible happened: the Cubs won the World Series.

– Bill Annechino

If you want a quick recap of what’s happened in sports since my last column, there are really only three things you need to know:  

The first thing is that the Thursday night game was yet another non-competitive game, this time by way of a Falcons blowout.  It has to be considered troubling for Tampa Bay that Jameis Winston’s development has largely plateaued.  This is only his second season in the league, so it’s possible for him to take a big step forward between this year and next year (think Derek Carr), but you have to think that the Buccaneers were expecting to be getting more out of their franchise quarterback by now.   Continue reading

Explaining Anthony Davis’s Ridiculous Start

The New Orleans Pelicans may be struggling but Anthony Davis sure isn't. (Getty Images)

The New Orleans Pelicans may be struggling but Anthony Davis sure isn’t. (Getty Images)

– Bill Annechino

So, now that the buzz has kind of worn off after those historic first two games that Anthony Davis played, I think it’s time to figure out just what the hell was going on, and how he did it.  He joined Michael Jordan as one of the only 2 players to have scored more than 90 points in their team’s first two games (Jordan had 91 back in 1986 and Davis has 95, if you were curious).  He is still seeking that elusive first win, but it is safe to say that the Pelicans’ issues lie elsewhere than their MVP candidate.  With these impressive statistics in mind, let’s take a closer look at how Anthony Davis is doing this, and what they look like in the bigger picture.   Continue reading

The Golden State Warriors Are In Uncharted Territory

Kevin Durant and Steph Curry are going to laugh their way into history this season.

Kevin Durant and Steph Curry are going to laugh their way into history this season.

– Bill Annechino

One of my favorite moments on Sportscenter happens when an athlete does something crazy and ESPN pulls up a statistic from the Elias Sports Bureau that says that this was the first time this has happened since 1991 (the year I was born).  Sometimes it feels like it’s all been done, but for 1 second I get reminded that there was something that happened today that has literally never happened in my lifetime.  It’s sort of like when a comet passes by Earth once every 200 years or something.  IN fact, you may have heard the expression that someone or something was a “comet” in that it was a once in a lifetime experience.  With that in mind, this year’s Golden State Warriors team is going to be a comet.  What you probably don’t know is how historic this is primed to be.  By adding Kevin Durant, the Warriors have paired two of the top three players in the NBA (Steph Curry is #1 and Kevin Durant is #3) for arguably the first time since the ABA/NBA merger.  Throughout the history of the league, there have been memorable groups of superstars; Kareem/Worthy/Magic in L.A., Duncan/Parker/Ginobili in S.A., Jordan and Pippen in Chicago, Shaq and Kobe in L.A.… you get the picture.  Rarely have these pairings resulted in 2 players from the same team finishing in the top 5 of MVP voting, however.  In this article, we are going to try to figure out just how historic the 2016-2017 Golden State Warriors could be, as well as how their pursuit of history meshes with their basketball philosophy.   Continue reading

The Hard Foul Top 10: NFL Power Rankings Roundtable

Brady is back and Patriots are back to their typical place, best team in football. (Getty Images)

Brady is back and Patriots are back to their typical place, best team in football. (Getty Images)

– Bill Annechino, Jim Bearor and Evan Sally

The Hard Foul team presents the first edition of our NFL Power Rankings Roundtable. Jim Bearor, Bill Annechino and Evan Sally all created their ranking separately and averaged them together to get our consensus rankings. Continue reading

The Mystery of Aaron Rodgers’ Poor Play

Aaron Rodgers has struggled for 22 games, what's going on? (Getty Images)

Aaron Rodgers has struggled for 22 games, what’s going on? (Getty Images)

– Bill Annechino

Continue reading