10/1/2021

Game 318: July 24, 2020the Initials Game

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  1. Fireworks explode over the river Clyde as Scotland ushered in the 20th Commonwealth Games with a dazzling and colourful opening ceremony which celebrated the country's culture and heritage to set the ball rolling for the 11-day sporting extravaganza. in Glasgow.(Source: AP)

  1. Game 318: July 24 2020 The Initials Game On
  2. Game 318: July 24 2020 The Initials Games
  1. The Indian contingent headed by flag-bearer and Olympic silver medallist shooter Vijay Kumar led the Parade of Nations, by virtue of being hosts in 2010 Delhi edition. (Source: AP)

Mobile games accounted for over $73.8 billion or 58% of the market, with computer games at $33.1 billion and console games at $19.7 billion. Virtual and augmented reality had about $6.7 billion, while video gaming content such as online streamers generated an additional $9.3 billion. List of all the previous INITIALS winners, date of game played, winning point total of the game, initials used in the game, when the winner got their first point and number of players in the game.

  1. Ace shooter Vijay Kumar holds the Tricolour as he leads the Indian contingent at Celtic Park during the opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. (Source: PTI)

The Red Sox will open the abbreviated 2020 season on Friday, July 24, at Fenway Park against Baltimore, the start of a three-game series and 60-game sprint that Major League Baseball announced in.

  1. India's contingent marching past at Celtic Park during the opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. (Source: PTI)

  1. The the men looked dapper in black blazers and Gray trousers along with headgear while the women athletes were dressed in saris. (Source: PTI)

  1. The 35,000 capacity Celtic stadium cheered as the Indians entered to the tune of popular Bollywood numbers. (Source: PTI)

  1. As per convention, the head of Commonwealth countries Queen Elizabeth II declared the Games Open. 'It is my greatest pleasure to declare the 20th Commonwealth Games open' Her Majesty said under a blue Glasgow sky to signal Scotland's third CWG and first after 1986 when Duke of Edinburgh played host. (Source: Reuters)

  1. The flag of Australia is carried by Anna Meares during the opening ceremony for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. (Source: Reuters)

318:
  1. The flag of Canada is carried by Susan Nattrass as they arrive during the opening ceremony for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. (Source: Reuters)

  1. Members of Scotland's team enter the stadium during the opening ceremony for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. (Source: Reuters)

  1. The Commonwealth Games flag is carried into the arena by former athletes including Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe, right, during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games 2014. (Source: AP)

  1. British former Olympian cyclist Chris Hoy holds up the Queen's baton during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games 2014. (Source: AP)

  1. Fireworks light up over the Commonwealth Games venues in Glasgow, Scotland. (Source: Reuters)

  1. Fireworks light up over the Commonwealth Games venues. (Source: Reuters)

  1. Fireworks explode after the opening of the 2014 Commonwealth Games. (Source: Reuters)

  1. Fireworks explode overhead during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games. (Source: AP)

  1. A message is displayed on a wall of video screen during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games 2014. (Source: AP)

2020
  1. Performers take part in the opening ceremony for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. (Source: Reuters)

  1. Queen Elizabeth waves from her vehicle as she arrives at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony. (Source: PTI)

  1. A girl poses with a placard saying 'Proud To Be An Indian' and with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's picture at the opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games. (Source: PTI)

  1. Indians with the Tricolor cheer for their country ahead of the opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games. (Source: PTI)

  1. Indians holding the Tricolor, express their excitement for the games at the venue ahead of the opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games. (Source: PTI)

© Kareem Elgazzar Cincinnati Reds right fielder Nick Castellanos (2) rounds the bases after hitting a home run during an intrasquad scrimmage, Wednesday, July 15, 2020, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.

There were a lot of disappointed teams in the National League Central as none of the four clubs who made it to the postseason advanced past the first round – and combined for only one win.

Offense was an issue for everybody. The Cincinnati Reds went scoreless in all 22 innings. The Milwaukee Brewers scored two runs in their two games and the Chicago Cubs scored one. The St. Louis Cardinals scored 16 runs in their first two games but were shut out in the decisive Game 3 of their series against the San Diego Padres.

Read some of the statements made by executives at their end-of-season press conferences:

'We definitely will have the coaching staff looking, re-evaluating their messaging to the players, their approach to the players,' Dick Williams, the Reds’ president of baseball operations, said Friday, 'because at the end of the day, we want those guys to get more hits.'

Chicago Cubs president Theo Epstein said Monday: “We can’t continue to run the exact same offense, the exact same group of guys out there and expect better results. I think the best way to approach this is acknowledging that we’re at a period of a real transition.”

Milwaukee Brewers president David Stearns added: “It wasn’t good enough. That’s the reality, and we have to work backwards off that. We begin with a premise that there is something in there that is explicable, that through our work and our research and our time, we can understand why.'

The Pittsburgh Pirates are the lone rebuilding team in the division. The Reds hope the 2020 season will serve as a building block for next summer. The Cubs have their core group of stars nearing free agency. The Cardinals and Brewers are trying to figure out how to move from playoff contender to World Series contender.

Here’s a look at where the four playoff teams stand entering the offseason:

CINCINNATI REDS (31-29)

Regular season offense: .212/.312/.403 with 243 R, 90 HR, 239 BB, 87 OPS+.

Free agents: SP Trevor Bauer, SP Anthony DeSclafani, SS Freddy Galvis, RF Nick Castellanos*.

The biggest priority for the Reds in the offseason will be fixing their offense. They finished with an MLB-low .212 batting average and the third-fewest runs per game (4.05), disappointing numbers after they committed nearly $150 million to sign Mike Moustakas, Nick Castellanos and Shogo Akiyama last winter. Castellanos holds an opt-out clause if he wants to return to the free-agent market.

'All teams are really good at defensive positioning and can hit into bad luck at times,' manager David Bell said. 'Why did that happen for us? We just have to really take a close look at it. We did all year. Yeah, we absolutely do believe in our guys, we made adjustments as much as we possibly could. But we have to find a way to get better.'

© Albert Cesare Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo (44) says a few words to the umpire after a wild pitch in the fourth inning of the second game of the MLB double header between the Cincinnati Reds and the Chicago Cubs at Great American Ball Park in downtown Cincinnati on Saturday, Aug. 29, 2020.

CHICAGO CUBS (34-26)

Regular season offense: .220/.318/.387 with 265 R, 74 HR, 229 BB, 90 OPS+.

Free agents: SP Jon Lester, SP José Quintana, SP Tyler Chatwood, RP Jeremy Jeffress, RP Andrew Chafin, 2B Jason Kipnis, OF Cameron Maybin.

Game 318: July 24 2020 The Initials Game On

It will be a defining offseason for the Cubs with Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, José Baez and Kyle Schwarber entering the final year of their contracts. “Is it an end? No,” Epstein said. “Is it clearly a period of transition and crossroads? Yes.”

The Cubs started with a 13-3 record, so there was a lot of frustration in the way they played in the final month of the season before they were swept out of the postseason by Miami. The Cubs hit .220 as a team, including a franchise-low .210 at Wrigley Field, according to the Chicago Tribune.

“We can’t be the same exact type of offense and expect better results,” Epstein said.

© Jeff Curry, Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports Sep 12, 2020; St. Louis, Missouri, USA; St. Louis Cardinals designated hitter Brad Miller (15) runs the bases after hitting a solo home run off of Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Tejay Antone (not pictured) during the fourth inning at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS (30-28)

Regular season offense: .234/.323/.371 with 240 R, 51 HR, 205 BB, 90 OPS+.

Free agents: C Yadier Molina, SP Adam Wainwright, DH Brad Miller, C Matt Wieters.

It’s hard to imagine a Cardinals roster without Molina or Wainwright, but that’s a possibility this offseason. The Cardinals had a unique season with the number of seven-inning doubleheaders they played, but their offense again ranked near the bottom of the Majors.

Game 318: July 24, 2020the Initials GameGame 318: July 24, 2020the Initials Game

They have some young talent, especially in the outfield with Dylan Carlson and Lane Thomas, but they’ll need more offensive production next year. “We’re not satisfied with our season being over in the wild card,” Cardinals manager Mike Shildt told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “Let’s make that perfectly clear. Nobody in that clubhouse is satisfied.”

Game 318: July 24 2020 The Initials Games

© Sam Greene/The Enquirer Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun (8) walks back to the dugout after striking out in the first inning of the MLB National League game between the Cincinnati Reds and the Milwaukee Brewers at Great American Ball Park in downtown Cincinnati on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. The Reds gave up an early lead to lose 3-2.

MILWAUKEE BREWERS (29-31)

Regular season offense: .223/.313/.389 with 247 R, 75 HR, 221 BB, 88 OPS+.

Free agents: OF Ryan Braun*, SP Brett Anderson, Eric Sogard*, Jedd Gyorko*.

The Brewers backed into the postseason, but Christian Yelich had the worst year of his career and Lorenzo Cain opted out early in the season. They don’t have as many holes to fill as they usually do in the offseason, holding club options on Braun, Sogard and Gyorko.

'We also have to recognize that there are so many aspects of our game this year that were different, that ascribing too much weight to this particular season has dangers as well,' Stearns said. 'Offense wasn’t great in our division. It could be that our division had some really good pitching, which I think it did.'

This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: Improving offense will the focus for Cincinnati Reds, National League Central teams

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