This Week In Sports: Baseball is back, Tatis Jr. gets monster deal

Fernando+Tatis+Jr.

Fernando Tatis Jr.

Zak Smith and Zak Smith

Spring Training has Begun

Baseball is back, and right in time. Spring training has kicked off for every MLB team down in Florida. The month of March is important for these teams, whereas it acts as not only a period for players to kick off the rust of the winter and for newly acquired players to gain chemistry with their new teammates, but for young players to show their skill and attempt to make a MLB roster. With only 25 spots for MLB teams available, the name of the game is to not be on the AAA and AA teams come the end of spring training. Opening Day in the Major Leagues is April 1, 2021.

Players Get Paid

Fernando Tatis Jr., shortstop of San Diego Padres signed a 14-year, $340 million dollar contract on February 22. Tatis becomes just the latest player in sports to receive their pay day by signing the longest deal in baseball history. The Padres, who have made a lot of moves to better themselves this offseason have a lot of faith in Tatis who in his 143 MLB games has 168 hits, 39 home runs and has hit at a career batting average of .301.

Watt’s the Decision?

No longer will NFL fans need to concern themselves with where JJ Watt, longtime Texans defensive end will end up playing next season. The three-time Defensive Player of the Year will join former teammate Deandre Hopkins in Arizona as JJ Watt will join the Cardinals on a two-year, $31 million dollar deal, with $23 million dollars guaranteed. Watt, in his career with the Texans accumulated his three Defensive Player of the Year Awards along with 101 sacks, two touchdowns and a Walter Payton Man of the Year award. He will line up alongside Chandler Jones as a member of the Cardinals who have now acquired two of the Texans’ best playmakers over the past two seasons (Deandre Hopkins).

NFL Cuts

With the new league year set to get under way in less than two weeks, NFL teams have begun making cuts and changes to their NFL rosters to help create cap space for their teams as well as to ensure the best possible teams around them. Below are some of the notable cuts made already this offseason:

Kyle Rudolph: Former tight end of the Minnesota Vikings was released by the Vikings on March 2.

Kyle Van Noy: Van Noy, a defensive end for the Miami Dolphins is expected to be released by the team within the coming days, if the Dolphins can’t find a suitable trade partner.

Alex Smith: The reigning Comeback Player of the Year is expected to be cut by the Washington Football Team within the next few days.

NBA All Star Rosters Finalized

I talked about it last week, but here are the final NBA All-Star Rosters including reserve players pending any more injuries before the game.

East: (Starters)                                                   West: (Starters)

Kevin Durant | Brooklyn Nets (Captain)             Lebron James | Los Angeles Lakers(Captain)

Giannis Antetokounmpo | Milwaukee Bucks      Nikola Jokic | Denver Nuggets

Joel Embiid | Philadelphia 76ers                        Kawhi Leonard | Los Angeles Clippers

Kyrie Irving | Brooklyn Nets                                Luka Doncic | Dallas Mavericks

Bradley Beal | Washington Wizards                  Stephen Curry | Golden State Warriors

*Jason Tatum/Boston Celtics to replace Durant due to Injury

Reserves:

East:                                                                        West:

Jaylen Brown | Boston Celtics                                  Anthony Davis | LA Lakers 

James Harden | Brooklyn Nets                                 Paul George | LA Clippers

Zach Lavine | Chicago Bulls                                     Rudy Gobert | Utah Jazz

Julius Randle | New York Knicks                             Damian Lillard | Portland Trailblazers

Ben Simmons | Philadelphia 76ers                          Donovan Mitchell | Utah Jazz

Nikola Vucevic | Orlando Magic                               Chris Paul | Phoenix Suns

Domantas Sabonis | Indiana Pacers                        Zion Williamson |New Orleans Pelicans

*Devin Booker | Phoenix Suns replacing Anthony Davis due to injury