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After Hours with Amy Lawrence PODCAST: Hour 2

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence
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September 23, 2022 6:01 am

After Hours with Amy Lawrence PODCAST: Hour 2

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence

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September 23, 2022 6:01 am

Steelers insider Dale Lolley joins the show | New developments in the Ime Udoka suspension | Pujols, Judge come THIS close.

Amy Lawrence Show
Amy Lawrence

Anywhere fans go to cheer on their team, there are behind the scenes MVPs, ensuring everything is game day ready. We see you Joe, fixing seats so every fan can enjoy every game. And Allie, who keeps her stadium running smoothly from the moment the first game starts to the last play of the season. At Grainger, you're our MVPs and we're always here for you. With supplies and solutions for every industry and 24-7 customer support.

Call or just stop by. Grainger, for the ones who get it done. Man, it was some kind of wonderful in week number two. Unless you were those teams that suffered the colossal collapses. We had some history made in week number two. Remember, we started a brand new poll called Mortification Monday. Mortified on a Monday? We must have had a lot of fun. We had some history made in week number two. Remember, we started a brand new poll called Mortification Monday. Mortified on a Monday?

We might continue that. It was such a popular poll. But there was euphoria in addition to mortification and now we're underway week three officially on the first evening of autumn. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio. After Moments, the After Hours Game of the Week Poll. And so you can find that on our show Twitter, After Hours CBS or on my Twitter and also on our Facebook page.

I know that's a really popular one as well because there's a lot of passion and excitement. And right now, every team is still technically involved in these playoff races. Which is why the hope is still emanating from most NFL cities. We're live from the Rocket Mortgage Studios.

You need to know what it takes for a home to fit your budget and your family. Rockets can. So we'll get back to the Celtics coaching situation. Plus Aaron Judge and Albert Pujols come oh so close in their hunt for history.

But neither one of them homer on Thursday night. Of course it's going to happen on the weekend when we're not working. That's always how it goes.

That's alright. Those digital audio clips we'll keep until we're back on Sunday. Right now we're pleased to welcome Dale Lawley who covers the Steelers. And has covered the Steelers since the early 90's.

Now with It was a pretty impressive start for the Steelers offense going toe to toe with the Browns in the first half of Thursday Night Football. But then the Pittsburgh offense takes this nose dive and isn't able to do a whole lot of anything in the second half Dale.

Initial impressions. An assessment of what you saw on Thursday. You know Amy I thought that they made some strides offensively and they did some good things again. But they just have a play here or a play there that seems to kind of push them off target. In this one they take the first drive of the second half. They hit the little inside screen to Jaylen Warren and it goes down to the 15 yard line of the Browns. And they get called for an illegal man downfield.

And negates that. Puts them back into third. And second 19 they can't convert that. They have to punt the ball. And then basically Nick Chubb took over. And the Browns play keep away for much of the second half. And that's been a problem for the Steelers as well. Where the offense and defense just seem to go through a lull at the same time together. Where the defense can't get off the field and the offense can't stay on the field. When the defense does eventually give them the ball back.

One of the things that I keep thinking is that you can only ask the defense to do so much. We saw that in the season opener. And I know they ended up winning that game against the Bengals. But it felt like a late in the game. And then again in the second half against the Browns. The defense is on the field so much that eventually they're worn out. Eventually they're tired.

Especially on a short work week. Yeah. And that was a concern coming into this game to be sure. You knew the Browns were going to try to run the football and run it a lot.

That's what they do. And the Browns definitely have an identity. And that's kind of what the Steelers are missing right now. Offensively is an identity.

I don't know if they know exactly what they want to be yet. It's still early in the season. But the defense has been on the field a lot in these first three games.

And to ask any defense to continue to do that is probably too much. I know the final score looks like it was a Cleveland blowout. But six points of that came on that desperation at the end of it.

That kind of made this look a lot worse than it was. Overall the defense held its own against the Browns. Nick Shub and Kareem Hunt are two of the best running backs in the league. And the Browns came into this averaging 200 yards rushing or over 200 yard rushing per game. They didn't get to that in this game. But to ask your defense to continually go out there and shut that running game down is probably a bit much to ask. You mentioned still searching for an identity with Mitch Trubisky. What's the hope for the offense?

What do they want to do even if they're not there yet, Dale? Well, throughout the offseason and training camp they talked about, hey, we want to get chunk plays. We want to be able to run the ball better. And I thought that they did both of those things in the first half. They got some chunk plays and they did run the ball effectively in the first half of this game. And then it kind of just got away from them a little bit after that first drive and to start the second half. They really didn't mount another drive until the field goal drive in the closing three minutes of the game.

So you can't have those lulls. They talked about they were one for nine on third downs in this game. Well, they were 0 for 3 on third downs in the first half. But the key was they weren't getting to third downs. They were moving the football. They were getting the first downs on first and second downs.

So they were putting themselves in position to have success. So one for six on third downs in the second half isn't going to get it done. If you can eliminate some of those third down plays by getting those chunk plays like the play that George Pickens down the sideline that they connected on, that takes care of a lot of that.

It backs the defense off a little bit and allows Najee Harris to run the football a little more effectively. Dale Lawley is with us fresh off Thursday night. He's been covering the Steelers going back to the early 90s. He's now with and also the host of the drive on Steelers Nation Radio.

It's after hours with Amy Lawrence here on CBS Sports Radio. That George Pickens catch that you mentioned, one-handed off-balance grab. There's been a lot of talk about his comments that he was open 90% of the time last game and that really every receiver he felt like was open. Strong words from a rookie. I'm sure Mike Tomlin loved that.

This is supposed to come first as a chicken and egg thing here. Is it Najee Harris to open up the coverage downfield or do they need that vertical element to be able to give Najee the room? I think it's the latter. I think that they do need to hit some of those downfield plays because they're seeing a lot of crowded boxes early in the season. So hitting some of those, putting that on tape, I think is critical.

The fact that they can do that. Mitch Trubisky really hadn't pushed the ball down the field all that much in the first two games. He didn't need too much against the Bengals because they got a 17-3 lead midway through the second quarter and just kind of tried to sit on the ball a little bit. Last week against New England, they talked about, hey, we need to take more of those shots because I think he averaged 4.8 yards per pass attempt, which isn't going to get it done in the NFL. So I thought they were better with that in this game.

I think it's close, as I mentioned before. I think they're doing some good things, but they're not a dynamic enough offense at this point to overcome the mistakes. Dale, I know that on Twitter, on social media, I'm seeing a lot of rumblings about quarterback change. Of course, in their game against New England, there were fans calling for Kenny Pickett. How often is that coming up with Mike Tomlin in press conferences? Oh, pretty much every time he talks. There's one particular reporter who works for a major network who has initials in his name that asks him about it every single time that we talk to him.

That's just how it goes. When you take a quarterback in the first round of the draft, you're going to have those questions, particularly when you don't have an incumbent quarterback coming back. Kenny Pickett is the quote-unquote local hero. You knew that as soon as they drafted him, people were going to want to see him in the game. The Steelers, Mike Tomlin's not inclined to do that at this point. Everything that they did in the offseason, in the training camp, was predicated on getting Mitch Trubisky ready to play and ready to be the team's starter. He took more than 90% of the first-team snaps throughout the entire process in the offseason. Pickett didn't get any first-team snaps until very late in the process, so he's not ready yet. The people who want to see him go out there would really be setting him up for failure. I like Kenny Pickett as a prospect.

I think he has a bright future. But we've seen a lot of quarterbacks come in and start as rookies who have a much higher pedigree and much higher ceiling than Kenny Pickett, and they've struggled in their first season. They want to take their time. They want to do this right with Kenny Pickett, and they're not going to make a knee-jerk decision about this. Except it doesn't seem like anybody's buying that explanation from Tomlin or anybody else right now.

Well, they can buy what they want to buy. This is what I've been saying all along, that they're going to take their time with them. Like I said, everything that they've done has been predicated on Mitch Trubisky being their starter.

So to make that change now would basically be throwing out everything that you did in the offseason. What is the strength of this team? I know T.J. Watt's not healthy right now, but what would you say, Dale, are the strengths of this team that they can build on? They still rush the passer pretty well, even without Watt. You saw that the Browns were getting rid of the ball quickly tonight. They didn't want Jacoby Brissett to have to face that pass rush. There's still some very dangerous guys in that defense.

Minkah Fitzpatrick has played well this season. He's taken the football away. That's what they want to do. They want to be an aggressive defense that takes the football away.

But to do that, you also have to stop the run. Without Watt in there, it's not quite as good as it could be. Certainly, he's a one-man wrecking crew. It was nice to see him out there in warm-ups tonight. I don't know if you saw that on the broadcast. I made note of it in the pregame show. He's out there running wind sprints, 50-yard wind sprints, stretching and doing all that stuff. He was getting ready to play a game.

You wouldn't know that the guy was dealing with a pectoral injury. I think they're close to getting him back. I know people are talking four to six weeks. It sure looks like it's going to be four weeks with him. Wow.

That is incredible. A torn pec and he can be back on the field in a month? That's the way it looks.

There are different degrees of torn pectoral muscles. I don't know exactly what degree his is. He looks like a guy who's really ramping, starting to ramp stuff up, like he's going to be coming back as soon as he's ready to come off IR here. Dale Lawley is with us after a Thursday night football in Cleveland, making that drive back to Pittsburgh.

It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence here on CBS Sports Radio. This is the first time in a long time that Mike Tomlin or the Steelers have had to deal with any type of quarterback controversy or change. So what's it like for you as someone who's covered the Steelers for such a long time over various eras, quote, unquote, to see this happening with the offense when it's been Ben Roethlisberger for the better part of two decades? Well, Amy, I lived through the Cordell Stewart-Kent Graham quarterback controversy.

In the 1996, it was Mike Tomczak and Cordell Stewart and Jimmy Miller battling it out early in the preseason. And then, you know, Bill Cowher pulls Jim Miller at halftime, basically, of the opener and makes the change. So, you know, I've seen this before. You know, this is different. You know, it hasn't happened with a first-round quarterback, so that's a little bit different here. But, you know, it makes things interesting, that's for sure. Are you surprised that Ben Roethlisberger had Merrill Hodge on his podcast and Merrill spent most of his time, or I guess a good portion of his time, ripping the Steelers' offense?

No. I mean, you know, guys are going to be critical, especially former players are going to be critical of the Steelers when they don't win. I mean, you know, Mike Tomczak always says the standard is the standard. And, you know, in a lot of cities, the standard is just they go out there and win some games and maybe get into the playoffs.

In Pittsburgh, the standard is different. You know, they have an expectation that, you know, you're going to compete for a Super Bowl every year. You're obviously not going to win a Super Bowl every year, but you better be competing for it, and if you're not, guys are going to speak their mind about it. I tell you, every single time the Steelers lose, I find people on my social media who are calling for Mike Tomczak's head, and I'm thinking, yeah, you want to fire him? I take him on my team. I take him as the head coach of my team tomorrow, actually. I mean, he's a Hall of Fame. Judging by the guys who have gotten in, you know, in the last couple of years in the Hall of Fame, Mike Tomczak is going to be a Hall of Fame coach when he retires. If the Steelers, you know, if he left the Steelers and the Steelers, they decided to part ways, he would have a job within 24 hours.

Yes, he definitely would. I agree. Dale, before we let you go, you've seen Cleveland and Cincinnati now, so the only AFC North team you haven't seen in person is the Ravens, but what are your impressions, you know, a couple of weeks here, about the AFC North? You know, I think every team in the AFC North has something that's just, at least right now, a little bit off, and I know Cleveland's 2-1 right now, but obviously they're missing their quarterback, and they spent a lot of money on that quarterback.

So, you know, that's where I think they are. Cincinnati is still trying to figure out that offensive line, and maybe it's just that Joe Burrow likes to hold the ball too much. They spent money on their offensive line, and it's not fixed. And then, you know, the Ravens, I saw a stat tonight that Jeff Srebeck tweeted out about them, that they've given up now I think five or six 400-yard passing games in their last 19 games. And, you know, we can look at that last year and say, well, they were missing some guys. Well, those guys are all back now. There's a reason why they went out and signed Jason Pierre Paul. They can't rush the passer, and I don't care how good your cornerbacks are on the back end, if you can't rush the passer, they're not going to be able to cover in today's NFL forever. So I think they all have some warts. You know, I don't know that any of them are there with Buffalo or the Chargers or Kansas City right now. It doesn't mean that can't change, but certainly right now at least early in the season, they're not, you know, right there with those teams quite yet. Right.

We have seen the fatal flaws in all four of them exposed through just two-plus weeks. So you can find Dale on Twitter at dlolly, L-O-L-L-E-Y, underscore, P-G-H. It's covered the Steelers going back to the early 90s now with, and you can catch him on the drive on Steelers Nation Radio. It's so good to talk to you. Thank you so much for a couple of minutes. Well, anytime, Amy.

Thanks. It's an interesting challenge for the Steelers, and if you believe Dale Lolly that they are not making a quarterback change because Kenny Pickett isn't ready. Mike Tomlin's sticking to his guns. In fact, Mike Tomlin was asked whether or not he's considering a quarterback change after their second loss of the season. I'm not in that mindset. I'm interested in reviewing this tape and looking at the totality of it and figuring out how we collectively get better. So answer that question definitively, no. Definitively, no. That lines up with what Dale Holly just told us, and I appreciate Dale, and also the fact that his phone was relatively clear even though he's in the car. That's a definitive no for Mike Tomlin because Kenny Pickett's not ready, and why would you want to feed him to the wolves, so to speak?

Why would you want to do that? We've seen other young quarterbacks have their development stunted because they were put out there too quickly. Thankfully for Trevor Lawrence, he now has a coach that speaks the same language, right? A coach that was a quarterback in the NFL himself and can get him on the right track, and also Trevor Lawrence, he's been in that pressure cooker for his entire football career, so he gets it. He's not going to fold, but you don't want to damage Kenny Pickett like a Josh Rosen. Who knows what Josh Rosen could have been, and I'm not suggesting that Pickett and Rosen are the same guy. Only that we don't know what Josh Rosen could have been if he wasn't put in such an awful situation like he was initially in Arizona. He was not ready.

Maybe that's the case with Justin Fields, though he's got his legs, and he's really athletic, and he's smart. I don't know. Sometimes these young quarterbacks are thrown out there because they're first-round picks, and it's the sink or swim, and it can be detrimental to their development, so if you're a Steelers fan, I would think you want a ride with Mitch Trubisky right now, and yes, you want the offense to open up, and you want things to get a little bit easier for Najee Harris because he's your bell cow, but you don't want a quarterback change. You don't really because you want Kenny Pickett to be the long-term solution, not a quick fix that only makes you happy for five minutes. No, I don't know.

Maybe he would be great. It's just that, as Dale said, he didn't take a lot of snaps with the first team, and he's never seen regular-season NFL defenses. That's all new.

There are adjustments. There are learning curves, sometimes steep for young QBs. Ride or die, Mitch Trubisky, Steelers fans. All right, you can find me on Twitter, ALawRadio. We've got the brand-new after-hours Game of the Week poll that is up and live and ready for you, and yes, we take write-in votes, as well, so Twitter and Facebook, 855-212-4227. It's after hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio. You are listening to the After Hours Podcast. We welcome all kinds here on After Hours. Lewis, who's in South Carolina. You're up next on After Hours. Amy.

Yes. You know, I'm a Clemson Tiger calling from South Cackalacky. I've got to tell you, y'all had me cracking up. I want to have some of that stuff y'all were drinking while y'all were doing. I got one more real quick thing, please.

Wait, there's no way you could possibly top that. This is a lyric from Eddie Bunny. I think I'm in love, and my life's looking up. I think I'm in love because I can't get enough. I'm in love with your show. I'm in love with you, Amy.

Oh, well, that's very sweet, Lewis. I'm a pilot. I got a plane.

I'll be there in about an hour. You are one hell of a man. I've got two tickets of paradise. Won't you pack your bags with me tonight?

This is After Hours with Amy Lawrence. I've got two tickets of paradise. Won't you pack your bags with me tonight? Happy almost Friday.

Or if it's your Friday, then happy Friday. The security guards downstairs always say good morning to me when I'm walking in and it's like three minutes after midnight Eastern time. That's just, it's not morning. Most of the time when left to my own devices, I wouldn't be in bed before midnight anyway, regardless of what my work schedule is.

I think my body clock, general body clock, if I could do anything, meaning no consideration for the work schedule and no pets, would be sleep around 2 a.m., wake up around 10 a.m. That would be my normal body clock, if I could. I don't remember the last time I, oh, no, I do remember the last time I slept eight hours. Actually, when I was in Wisconsin, I, let's see, let's see, I was packing and cleaning on Friday, last Friday, and I slept only three hours at night. I always have these grand plans of how I'm going to get everything done and sleep six or seven hours before I travel.

Early morning flight, it never happens. So I slept three hours, I got to the airport, I got off the plane after traveling in Wisconsin. We went straight to my Grammy's little town in the middle of Cow Country, Wisconsin, which was a two-plus hour drive. By the time we got done there, we turned around and we came back.

We went almost straight to a family dinner. So I had been up, other than the three hours of sleep, I had been awake for a day and a half. And when I finally got to bed on Saturday at, say, 9.30, I think I lasted until 9.30, I slept 11 hours. I don't remember the last time I did that.

My aunt and uncle, they were very kind. They just let me sleep. But yeah, 11 hours, that's a rare thing. It maybe happens once a year. So I don't know why I got that tangent, but just the idea that I normally would be awake until 2 a.m. anyway because that's the body clock.

So this show fits me perfectly. 855-212-4227, that's our toll-free line if you want to weigh in on the after-hours game of the week or if you would like to talk about anything that happened with Steelers and Browns For the year-long suspension for Ime Utocha, the Boston Celtics head coach, and if you missed what I said in the first hour, according to Shams Charanea of The Athletic, there's an article that's on The Athletic right now, the athletic website. Initially, when Celtics brass found out about this relationship between the coach and a female staff member, they were led by both parties. It specifically indicates in the column that the Celtics were led to believe by both parties that the relationship was consensual. That would explain why there was nothing done in July and nothing came out and there was no red flag and no one was worried about getting suspended. But I guess recently, she told them something different. She indicated that Utocha made some unwanted comments. That's the word that Shams Charanea uses, according to his sources, unwanted comments, which means the Celtics didn't do anything about it.

They could potentially be in line to face lawsuits for sexual harassment and other accusations that corporations are deathly afraid of these days and should be. That type of behavior was allowed to go on for far too long. In fact, I had a listener respond to, because I did tweet about the one-year suspension and just the fact that it came out of nowhere and it's days before training camp starts.

That's the part that blows me away. A one-year suspension days before training camp. This is an unprecedented move by the Celtics.

They're trying to tell anybody who's paying attention, including Utocha, that they're serious about this. And so even as I'm still trying to process what this means for the Celtics and how Utocha could be this careless and reckless and have no disregard or have no regard, excuse me, have so little regard for the players that he's now left high and dry, someone wrote back to me and said, in pretty much every situation, the employee would be fired. I mean, can I just tell you the number of places I've worked where there were plenty of men who were sleeping around and none of them were ever fired? It's a more recent development that companies are deathly afraid of lawsuits. Sexual harassment, retaliation, coercion, that kind of stuff.

And so it's a different climate in 2022. And if what Shams Charanea wrote in The Athletic is accurate, then that's where this fear comes from. And that's why even when they found out about the relationship in July, there wasn't a suspension. Now, we had heard the reports or read the reports last night that the team knew about it and gave some direction.

I guess depending upon how you interpret, potentially told the two employees to cease and desist, but that now there is something different coming from the female employee, that there may very well have been some unwanted advances or comments that were inappropriate. I think it's interesting to think about this from the perspective of the team, from the perspective of the players. Yes, Udoka is a big reason why they made it to the NBA finals last year.

And so it does leave them an alert. The interim coach that will step in is a member of his staff. Actually, the guy that would have probably stepped in took a job with the Utah Jazz this offseason and former boss Danny Ainge.

Anyway, neither here nor there. The guy that's stepping up to serve as interim head coach is on the staff, so maybe there's some consistency there. But man, how do these players ever trust him again? And it's not so much the relationship. I mean, people have relationships. The issue is that he put the relationship ahead of the team, and there's no other way to interpret that. He put this relationship, consensual or not, ahead of the team, because it's always a slippery slope in a sticky situation.

Clearly there are team rules, but that didn't stop him. And I'm not saying that he's the only one to blame because it takes two to tango. There's two people in this relationship, but she's not the head coach of the Boston Celtics. Maybe she loses her job.

I don't know. I don't know who she is. I hate the speculation.

I think the speculation is irresponsible. But regardless, she's not the coach. She's not one of the top employees in the Celtics organization. She's not responsible. She's probably not making millions of dollars like he is. So she's not responsible for a team that's relying on her.

She's not one of the faces of the franchise, thus the reason that we don't even know who she is. So yeah, she's responsible for the relationship and for being part of it, but she doesn't have nearly as much to lose as Emo Udonka. And because he's higher up the food chain and higher up the totem pole, and has more people counting on him and more people relying on him, this is on him. Regardless of what you think of the man cheating on his longtime fiance and the woman being a home wrecker, blah, blah, blah, this is not a moral question, at least not one that we're answering in sports radio. The question is, how could he be so careless when he's got so much to lose with his team?

How could he be so reckless when a team is counting on him? That's the part that blows me away. And don't give me some crap about the heart wants, what the heart wants. His heart already has a family, or did. I don't know what's going on there now. That's the part that sucks, is that a lot of people have been hurt by this whole thing, and a lot of people have just been thrown for a loop days before training camp starts.

He should have been considering them either before or during this relationship, maybe understanding how horribly wrong this could devolve. You can find me on Twitter, A Law Radio, also on our Facebook page. Take the After Hours Game of the Week poll, and then we'll try to work in some of your calls.

Producer Jay tells me he has a sound bite from every single team who's playing this weekend. We're going to put that to the test. Sometimes two.

He's got this sly smile on his face, like he's been doing some work back there behind the double-paned glass. No, never. I mean, I didn't say it.

There's a lot of things that I would accuse Jay of, being allergic to vegetables and making up words that I can't even use, but not flacking or slouching. Now, you are a banana slug, but not when you're at work. A lot of places you could have went with that. What?

I wasn't sure where you're going to go with that. Well, you said a lot of things you can call me, but that was okay. Oh, banana slug.

A banana slug, but just not at work. He works very hard, which is why I'm going to keep him for year number two. After that, we'll see. I don't know. Should you still be on probation? I'm on probation now. On probationary period? Look at his face.

Didn't know I was on it at the moment. I didn't say. Did I say, should you still be on probation? Oh, whoops. It's not really how I meant it. I phrased it irresponsibly. Marco's giving me a look like, yep, yes, you did. Well, you did. I mean, we can, you got sound. We're going to go back and play it again.

Welcome back, Marco. Am I on probation too? Everyone's on probation.

I mean, it is the business, right? No, no one's on probation. It's after hours on CBS Sports Radio. Here's our latest sports update.

I'm going to shut my mouth. This is After Hours with Amy Lawrence. Ooh, history and a hunt for history on Thursday. We nearly saw both Albert Pujols and Aaron Judge hit home runs, alas. Combined, the two of them were probably, oh, five feet, six feet short. Combined, it's After Hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio. That's John Rooney on Cardinals Radio, so he teases the fans in San Diego. This is an afternoon game, by the way, with a ball that goes just shy of the wall and just as big a deal. Actually, in the first inning, he had a single, which was more of a low trajectory. It was a low line drive. Remember those days when Albert Pujols tried to tell us he was a line drive hitter?

Anyway, it was much lower, more like that. Jean Carlos Stanton walk-off grand slam that he hit a couple of nights ago. That one got dangerously close to the wall as well.

It just didn't have the height. But he hit two balls that went to the wall and had the distance. Just did not have home run number 699. So we haven't seen one from Albert since last Friday. I said if he can hit one a week before the end of the season, and that's what he's been doing. So he continues to be in the lineup because he continues to produce.

He's hitting for average over the last month and he's contributing RBI as well. So Albert Pujols still sitting on 698. And get this, Cardinals are in Los Angeles to play the Dodgers this weekend. I texted with our friend Michael Duarte of NBC LA and said are you really excited to see history this weekend? And he said fingers crossed. And that's the last place that Albert played before he went back to St. Louis.

So if there's anywhere that he would get a dazzling reception and a welcome back, it would be Los Angeles. It's after hours here on CBS Sports Radio. The Cardinals with Albert Pujols in his pursuit of history obviously are trying to lock up a playoff spot and hold off the Brewers for that NL center. Almost a nail. NL central title. And they were in danger of getting swept. So it wasn't Pujols, but it was a big blow in the seventh inning. The 3-1 pitch to Donovan is hit high in the air to right field.

That's deep. And it is a big fly. A slammer for Brandon Donovan. And the Cardinals break out in the seventh inning. And the Cardinals now lead 5-3.

Again on Cardinals radio. So there were a couple of big fly from big flies. Big fly.

Big flies. There were a couple of big flies from the St. Louis offense that helped them avoid the sweep. But one of them was Lars Neubauer and one of them, Brandon Donovan, who had the grand slam in the seventh inning. And even though Manny Machado homered in the eighth, the Cardinals were able to hold off the Padres rally. And as for, and this is happening with the Yankees too, every question seems to be about Aaron Judge. Well with the Cardinals, as much as they desperately needed this win, they're now sitting on 88. And if you're looking at the NL central standings, they have a seven and a half game lead. So they're trimming that magic number against the Milwaukee Brewers. But again, every question really is about Pujols and his pursuit of history.

And I love the answer from Lars Neubauer, who's got a front row seat. He's the machine. He's the machine. And you know, nothing surprised me at this point.

You know, every ball he hits, I expect to go out. You know, that's just who he is and what he's doing. But it's, I mean, it's just so impressive. You know, obviously now I'm getting a glimpse of it in person, you know, for this year. You know, to see what he's done and to obviously, you know, the accolades that he's accumulated over his career is unbelievable. And so for me to see a glimpse of it this year and to see how he's doing it, it's, I don't want to say it's unbelievable because it's Albert, but you know, it's pretty incredible.

Isn't that cool? About these young guys who will never forget the 2022 season and certainly the possibility existed. We were talking about it in spring training. I was talking about it when Pujols rejoined the Cardinals. Think about the possibility that he could hit 700 home runs. We know he's already in solo in fourth place all time. He's passed Alex Rodriguez. But this is a different kind of history. This is baseball immortality.

And so here he is on the cusp. And even Adam Wainwright, I don't remember where I saw it, but he was talking about how it was the best weekend he could have asked for. I even showed, maybe it was on Twitter. I even showed producer James what he wrote. He said, everything with Albert Pujols, he and Yadier Molina setting the record for most games started as a battery and then seeing Pearl Jam live for the first time.

That was awesome. That was his big week last week. And so all of these guys get an opportunity to be there and to see it firsthand. And that also applies to the New York Yankees. So Cardinals get the win. They're closer to a playoff spot. And it matters to the Padres too. Because in the National League wildcard standings, we know either the Braves or the Mets will have the number one wildcard.

They're so far out in front. Those two who are vying for the NL East. By the way, Braves lost on Thursday. So the Mets now have, what is it, a game and a half lead atop the NL East.

They didn't play on Thursday. Padres have got a half game lead over the Phillies. And the Brewers are two and a half games back. So wildcard standings, crazy that the Padres are what, 20 games back of the Dodgers in that NL West. And yet they are in fact a wildcard team. It's just the disparity and the wins. The Dodgers actually ended up getting a walk off on a Mookie Betts hit against the Diamondbacks on Thursday.

So they continue to churn out victories now to the tune of 104. Yankees not only had Aaron Judge, but also had playoffs on the line. And if you didn't watch this game, the buzz, the electricity, every single time Judge came to the plate, he walked three times and struck out with the bases loaded.

So it wasn't all positive. And there was one more at bat in the tenth inning. And the pitch is swung high and hit in the air to deep center. Hernandez back.

He's on the track. Next to the wall makes the catch. He made the catch right at the Monument Park wall. Almost. Did you hear Susan Wahlman in the background?

I mean, everybody is personally invested at this point. By the way, I think John Sterling did a masterful job at that call. I know that he's an older guy and there are calls that he messes up. And sometimes he sees fly balls as potential home runs and he gets all excited. He did not.

He nailed that. Even though it was a couple of feet from the outfield wall. This is a ball that went to dead center. It was a couple of feet away from being the 61st home run, which would have tied Roger Maris for the most ever by a Yankee and an American League hitter.

Just got underneath it a little bit. It was Sunday night, so I was hoping maybe it was blowing out the time I was hitting. But, you know, just missed it. But it lined up for a nice little JD walk-off, that's for sure. What a great at-bat, you know. I thought it would have been pretty showy to drop it off at Monument Park out there. But probably just under it enough. Cool night, you know, felt like fall. You know, that might add a little factor in there. But put together a really good at-bat.

Just probably just under it enough. You heard the roars of the stadium crowd. Of course, the cell phones were recording.

The pictures were being snapped. The Roger Maris family, there's more of them now. And the family of Aaron Judge.

They looked like they thought it was out, but it comes up just short. What did happen, though, is Josh Donaldson walks it off in the 10th with a hit. And so this is after Aaron Judge. And the Yankees clinch a playoff spot and are back into the postseason. And we'll see whether or not they end up continuing this big-time momentum.

It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence, CBS Sports Radio. We'll be right back. We'll be right back. We'll be right back. . Viator is the world's leading travel experience marketplace, offering everything from simple tours to extreme adventures and all the niche, interesting stuff in between. Extensive options, ease of selection and flexibility at your fingertips help make sure your time is wonderfully spent. Viator is the place to go to book experiences that will create long-lasting moments that make lifetime memories. And Viator has over 300,000 bookable experiences to choose from.

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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-14 15:25:00 / 2023-01-14 15:42:23 / 17

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