Despite the fact that there was no baseball being played today former Cleveland Indian outfielder Kenny Lofton brought a ray of sunshine to the booth as he joined Jasen Sokol and Sam Bourquin to talk about the season.

When asked about what the Indians are looking to do in 2016, Kenny said it all comes down to the guys taking the hill every fifth day.

"Pitching is going to be key for this team," Lofton said. "They've shown last year they can do it, and now this year, hopefully they can keep that pace going."
 
Kenny was a key part of the Indians' stretch of winning seasons in the 90's, and was scheduled to be a part of the Tribe's Opening Day festivities.
 
Lofton explained that when he played, he had the usual jitters when the season started, but he says its just part of the territory for all baseball players.
 
"The closer I get to the stadium, the butterflies and the jitters go away, and when I step on the field, it all goes away," Kenny said. "Some guys let that (Opening Day pageantry) get to them, but I didn't."
 

Lofton played for the Indians from 1992-96, 1998-01, and spent one last season with the Tribe in 2007. The Tribe will take the field tomorrow at 1:10pm Tuesday on 1590 WAKR.

The Cleveland Indians are ready to start the 2016 season, and the organization and fans alike are excited about the Tribe's outlook. 

President of Baseball Operations Chris Antonetti joined Jasen Sokol and Sam Bourquin in Booth 6 in Progressive Field for Opening Day at the ballpark.
 
When asked about what he's most proud of in terms of the organization, he said it was a group effort from the top on down. 
 
He said the additions of Napoli, Davis and Uribe will help both on the diamond and in the clubhouse. 
 
"We targeted those guys early in free agency, and we wanted guys who could help us on the field and fit in with the culture of our organization," he said. 
 
 
 Today's matchup will pit Indians ace Corey Kluber against David Price of the Red Sox.
Saturday, 02 April 2016 14:31

Ben Axelrod Talking WrestleMania

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With WrestleMania 32 coming up this Sunday, lots of wrestling fans are having their eyes on the WWE'S signature event down in Arlington, Texas.

Bleacher Report's Ben Axelrod, a professional wrestling enthusiast himself, joined the Average Sports Show to talk with Brad about the key matches, unique storylines, and some of the surprises you might see Sunday.

One of the more intriguing matchups will take place between Shane McMahon and the Undertaker, which is big in the fact that if the Undertaker loses, it would be his last WrestleMania in his illustrious career.

The main event will be Roman Reigns vs Triple H, which has lots of fans excited.

Axelrod says the development of Roman's character is good for the WWE.

"I think a heel turn would be good for Roman Reigns, and I think the talent's there and I think he's a good performer."

Friday, 01 April 2016 18:45

AUDIO Tyvis Powell Preparing For Next Step

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As the NFL Draft nears, many college stars are preparing themselves to take that next step in their football career, wanting to hear their name called and realize that dream that they worked so hard for.

One such athlete is former Ohio State safety Tyvis Powell, who is looking to make his impact on an NFL team coming up.

Powell joined the Sam Bourquin Show on a "Feel Good Friday" to talk about his prep leading up to the draft, his time at OSU, and the lessons and joys he took from playing the game of football.

Tyvis says he's excited about the process and is working towards becoming the best player he can be.

 "I'm excited and nervous at the same time, but it'll be another step and it'll be exciting impressing new coaches and hanging with new teammates," he said.

 Powell was part of the 2014 National Championship team.

Tyvis and some of his fellow Buckeyes will be signing autographs at the Courtyard Canton-Marriott on Saturday at 1pm and 3:30pm. 

Powell talked about playing at Ohio State and how it was a memorable experience he'll never forget.

"When you make plays and the stadium erupts, there's nothing like it, we have the best fans in the land and I'll miss them," he said.

 

Thursday, 31 March 2016 18:04

AUDIO Villanova Ready For Hield, OU

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The Final Four is set to tip off from Houston this weekend, and Jay Wright's Villanova Wildcats are ready to face a stiff challenge from the Oklahoma Sooners on Saturday.

Richard Hoffman, Sports Writer and Producer for PhillyVoice.com joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about how the Wildcats will prepare to stop sharpshooting guard Buddy Hield and the OU squad in their half of the bracket.

Hoffman says Villanova will have to guard the perimiter, not just Buddy.

"They (the Sooners) shoot a lot of threes, I think Villanova will give them a better game this time around,' said Hoffman/

Oklahoma won by 20 in their first meeting in December, but the Wildcats will have to put that in the rear view if they want to make it to the National Championship.

He says it's been an interesting ride for them and their fans up to this point and they've been playing solid ball, perhaps the best they've played all year.

Thursday, 31 March 2016 17:51

AUDIO Conn: Ravens' Draft Needs On Defense

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The Baltimore Ravens had a down year in 2015, and they're going to have to add some young blood to the defense in hopes of returning to the playoffs in 2016.

Jeremy Conn from 105.7 The Game in Baltimore joined Sam Bourquin Thursday to talk about the Ravens' draft needs coming up in April.

He says they need help at both pass rusher and cornerback, knowing there are some aging veterans in both of those spots.

 "You're going to need some help with the pass rush, you have Terrell Suggs in the November of his career, and you have Elvis Dumervil, who is getting up there, and there's some spots in the secondary that need filled as well," Conn said.

"It's expected that they will go defense in their first selection, but there's any number of directions they can go in."

With the NFL Draft around the corner, the Cleveland Browns' opponents are thinking about their draft needs heading into April and ways to get better.

Jay Morrison, who covers the Bengals for the Dayton Daily News joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about the Bengals needs at wideout, especially with the loss of both Mohamed Sanu and Marvin Jones to free agency.

 "You don't know if that (drafting a wide reciever) is going to line up for them at #24, they obviously need one, but there's no guarantee they will take one at that position," Morrison said.

Jay also talked about the addition of Karlos Dansby to the linebacking corps and how his leadership on the field and in the locker room will help the young linebackers in Bengal country.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 18:20

AUDIO Levine: Uconn Dominance Good For Hoops

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After a series of blowouts in the regular season and in the NCAA Women's Tournament, many people have asked the question Is UConn too good? 

Here to talk about that is Hartford Courant contributor Gabriella Levine, who joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about the sustained excellence from Coach Geno Auriemma's squad.

She says Geno recruits at a different level and coaches at a different level than other coaches and you can't take anything away from what he's built in Storrs.

"I think that UConn is able to separate themselves because they keep their foot on the pedal from the time they start the season to the time they finish the season," Levine says. 

She says that the argument that UConn is bad for the game is an argument that people in Storrs don't take to kindly to, but that every time UConn comes up big, that argument resurfaces time and time again.

 

 The Huskies are in the Final Four once again, and they are too focused to have any sort of mental letdowns in Indianapolis.

"They are too far along, they are too consistent, the team is led by three seniors with a lot of experience, and you have three newbies in the Final Four (Washington, Syracuse, and Oregon State), they don't know how to lose at this point," Levine explained.

 

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 18:11

AUDIO Heels Looking To End Orange Run

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The North Carolina Tar Heels are ready for another Final Four appearance and will face off against Syracuse Saturday.

Jackson Cowart from the Daily Tar Heel joined Brad Russell in the Average Sports Show to talk about the squad and how they are playing their best basketball at the right time.

Cowart says Brice Johnson is the key to their success against the Orange.

"He's had a great tournament, and the road to the the National Championship's going to be on Brice's back," he said.

The Tar Heels have been to 19 Final Fours, more than any other team in men's college basketball.

 He says that the press that Coach Boeheim implements defensively for Syracuse is a little overblown, but if they clamp down defensively in the paint and force Carolina to shoot from the outside, Syracuse has a chance to win.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 17:49

AUDIO LeBron Foundation, Bridgestone Team Up

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The LeBron James Family Foundation is teaming up with a legendary local golf tournament.

LeBron's non-profit is linking up with the World Golf Championship-Bridgestone Invitational.

"LeBron's an Akron institution, and so is the Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone,"
says Bridgestone Invitational executive director Don Padgett, "so we felt it made a lot of sense for the two organizations to get together...so we're excited."

Padgett says that it's not just about $50,000 pledge to the foundation...it's about kids getting involved in the tournament....with events both before the tournament and the

"The kids will be out there, they'll get to experience the tournament, behind the scenes tour", Padgett tells WAKR's Jasen Sokol, "maybe try a shot at our Green Monster Challenge, it's a replica of Firestone's signature 16th hole."

Other youth oriented charities that have benefitted from the tournament include Akron Children's Hospital and University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital.

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