Chris McMahon has become MLB attraction at West Chester Rustin High School

Chris McMahon has become MLB attraction at West Chester Rustin High School

Across the front of West Chester Rustin's uniform reads the word Knights, a close resemblance to the fictional team from the movie "The Natural."

And senior pitcher Chris McMahon could very well be Rustin's version of Roy Hobbs, Robert Redford's character in the legendary movie based on a ballplayer's remarkable natural talents.

"He's unique," Rustin High School head coach Bradley Harkins said this week. "He's just a tremendous athlete, and to see him excel in soccer, basketball and baseball — his parents have been phenomenal to allow him to play other sports. He could have chosen lacrosse and he'd be one of the best players on the team. I think that has helped him rise the way he has."

McMahon is unquestionably the best baseball player to come out of Rustin High School, which hasn't had a player drafted by a big-league team since the school opened its doors in 2006. But it wasn't until last season when baseball became McMahon's full-time extracurricular activity.

"Just playing three sports really helped with athleticism," McMahon said. "Using all types of muscles in your body. Specializing in one sport — some people have their reasons why they think it's good — I think playing all three, you're not missing out on anything. I tell people to play whatever you can until you can't."

In fact, McMahon wasn't even on a major-league scout's radar until his junior year at Rustin when he hit a four-inch growth spurt, climbing from 5-foot-10 to a lanky 6-2. The velocity on his fastball increased from mid-70s as a freshman to low-90s entering his senior season, and his control is equally as impressive, having surrendered only four walks in more than 53 innings.

"I wouldn't say we could see it get to this point," Harkins said. "We knew he was a good player. We knew he had a ton of potential. His sophomore year, he really turned it up. You could see his competitive nature on the mound. He continued to grow and get stronger. Really, every year he has grown by leaps and bounds. It's been pretty amazing."

And now those scouts' radar guns have been pointed squarely this season at McMahon, who is considered the top-ranked prospect in Pennsylvania and projected to be taken during the second round of next month's MLB draft. As many as 25 to 30 scouts have routinely showed up at Rustin, where they've had to install a pair of metal benches this season for scouts to stand on.

"It started pretty full throttle," Harkins said. "At the beginning of the season, we have typical southeast Pennsylvania weather. We were indoors at the All-Star Baseball Academy, and he was throwing a live bullpen to hitters. I walk into the door of a dozen guys waiting for us to get practice started.

"That was pretty eye-opening to see a dozen middle-aged men walking around our practice. Once the games started, they have been there in full force."

Last Wednesday, McMahon and the Knights saw their season come to an end, losing to Upper Merion in the quarterfinals of the District 1 Class 5A playoffs — and McMahon isn't exactly sure where he'll be playing next season. He's committed to the University of Miami next fall, but depending on the results of draft night, McMahon could forgo a collegiate career and jump right to the professional level.

"It's exciting. Only a handful of kids get to go through this," McMahon said. "Me and my family will sit down and talk about draft day and see what's best for me. ... It's fun, it's exciting. It can be overwhelming at times, but it's fun."

NBC Sports Philadelphia Internship - Advertising/Sales

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NBC Sports Philadelphia Internship - Advertising/Sales

Position Title: Intern
Department: Advertising/Sales
Company: NBC Sports Philadelphia
# of hours / week: 10 – 20 hours

Deadline: November 20

Basic Function

This position will work closely with the Vice President of Sales in generating revenue through commercial advertisements and sponsorship sales. The intern will gain first-hand sales experience through working with Sales Assistants and AEs on pitches, sales-calls and recapping material.

Duties and Responsibilities

• Assist Account Executive on preparation of Sales Presentations
• Cultivate new account leads for local sales
• Track sponsorships in specified programs
• Assist as point of contact with sponsors on game night set up and pre-game hospitality elements.
• Assist with collection of all proof of performance materials.
• Perform Competitive Network Analysis
• Update Customer database
• Other various projects as assigned

Requirements

1. Good oral and written communication skills.
2. Knowledge of sports.
3. Ability to work non-traditional hours, weekends & holidays
4. Ability to work in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment
5. Must be 19 years of age or older
6. Must be a student in pursuit of an Associate, Bachelor, Master or Juris Doctor degree
7. Must have unrestricted authorization to work in the US
8. Must have sophomore standing or above
9. Must have a 3.0 GPA

Interested students should apply here and specify they're interested in the ad/sales internship.

About NBC internships

Mobile sports betting in New Jersey not worth it yet

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Mobile sports betting in New Jersey not worth it yet

Mobile sports betting is now available in the state of New Jersey.

So is it worth your time to make the trek across the bridge for mobile betting?

Most experts will tell you no. DraftKings is taking advantage of being the only mobile show in town.

Crash course on how sports betting works

It’s known amongst professional bettors that you have to win a minimum of 52.34 percent of your bets in order to make a profit. This is because sportsbooks in Vegas will typically take 10 percent in an effort to guarantee profit if a game has an even money bet on each team. Heavy hitters, or “sharps,” will view a 55 percent hit rate as a huge success and it’s extremely rare that the average bettor reaches that number over the long-term — no matter how many of your friends tell you they’re hitting 65 percent.

How DraftKings mobile betting works compared to Vegas

DraftKings is the most recent company to enter the world of mobile sports betting. However, you won’t be getting the best value betting on their mobile app.

For a traditional NFL game, there is a point spread. Let’s take the Eagles’ regular season opener. The defending World Champs are four-point favorites over the Falcons with the odds being -110 to bet either side. What this means is you need to bet $110 to win $100 and the house keeps $10. That $10 of interest is known as “juice” or “vig.”

The vig alters however if you bet the outright winner (the moneyline). The Eagles are currently -185 and the Falcons are +160. This is because the Eagles are a sizable favorite. You would have to bet $185 to win $100 betting the Eagles on the moneyline. You’ll notice there is a “25 cent” difference between the two moneylines. This is referred to as a “dime line.” The lower the “dime line” is, the more advantageous it is to the bettor. 

In baseball, this also goes for betting the run line, which is like a football betting line. Run lines will be -1.5 and +1.5 runs. If you bet on the team at -1.5, that team has to win by two runs. If you bet on the team at +1.5 runs, they need to either lose by one run or win the game outright.

MLB is where we see lack-of-value on DraftKings’ mobile betting. On the image below, you can see (as of this morning) the dime line for the run line is 40 cents in the Astros/Giants game. Most all of the dime lines for that game is 20 cents in Vegas sportsbooks. The DraftKings’ moneyline dime line for tonight’s Phillies/Diamondbacks game is 30 cents. Vegas ranges from 10 cents to 20 cents.

Is it worth it?

The playing field will level as more sportsbooks become mobile but you get far better value at a live sportsbook for the time being. The question for the consumer is how much are they willing to pay for the convenience of mobile sports betting? If it is value the consumer is looking for, then it’s best to make the trip to Atlantic City or Delaware to have some action on a game.

WARNING PENNSYLVANIA RESIDENTS: if you even attempt to place a bet while in your home state, you’ll get a pretty mean and scary message: