1. Were the Royals outfielders actually trying in the bottom of the 5th inning on Monday night? Three balls danced around out there in the right field-center field gap and no one looked like they were in a hurry to get to them. On the ball that Aubrey Huff hit, right fielder Mark Teahan looked like a little leaguer trying to get to it.
2. Melvin Mora out in the community signing autographs this week during a homestand…t-shirts being given away at home games…crafty promotional events designed to reward the fans for their attendance. Hmmm…I wonder where the Orioles suddenly got all of their motivation to reward the team’s customers? I wonder…
3. A member of the Ravens staff tells me the team is “over the moon” (English slang for “very excited”) about Joe Flacco. “The guy can make every throw in the book,” someone told me at Owings Mills. Take a whiff…smell that? Smell it? It’s a quarterback competition this summer. And Flacco is going to be involved in it.
4. I’m no baseball expert, that’s a given, but I can’t figure out what damage it would do to Matt Wieters to bring him up in September this year and let him make 50 plate appearances in the big leagues just to get a taste of it. It can’t HURT, can it?
5. Inbee Park’s win in the U.S. Women’s Open golf championship is not a good thing for the LPGA Tour. She’s a nice young lady and all – and obviously a terrific player – but the Korean contingent that has flooded onto the scene in the U.S. offers nothing to the LPGA in terms of marketing magnetism or fan connection.
6. Now we find out Derrick Martin of the Ravens really was the Derrick Martin of the Ravens who was found to be in possession of marijuana in Cleveland on Saturday night. Well, then, where’s the other Derrick Martin who was supposedly in the airport at the same time? Did his bag have marijuana in it too? I’m confused…
7. Roger Goodell showed some real stones last week when he told everyone the obvious: that NFL rookies make far too much money coming into the league and that changes need to be made to stop rewarding players who haven’t accomplished anything. Give Roger a raise.
8. Ray Lewis of the Ravens allegedly owes nearly $5,800 to a company in Phoenix who provided #52 with “hostesses” for a Super Bowl party he held last January. “Hostesses”. I love it.
9. Note #213 on Michael Phelps: Baltimore has never had a professional swimming team in a professional swimming league. I double-checked just to make sure.
10. So the Orioles dropped another Sunday road game and everyone’s all up in arms. What’s the big deal? The Redskins have had the same problem for years and no one in Baltimore seems to care about that.
11. Boy, talk about good luck. Just when Jamie Walker’s elbow starts to bother him (*cough* – *cough*), Adam Loewen just happens to be ready to return to the team and pitch out of the bullpen. Now THAT is some good timing, huh?
12. Speaking of the O’s and pitching, even though I think he’s their best pitcher (by far), I’d dangle Jeremy Guthrie’s name around at the trading deadline and see if I could fleece someone who wants a quality starting pitcher. And, before you start bellyaching about trading our #1 pitcher, keep in mind that Guthrie is the proud owner of exactly 10 career wins in the big leagues. Ten.
13. My Tigers to the World Series pre-season pick has new life, huh?
14. Last week, Bubba Watson might have said the dumbest thing a professional golf has ever said. When a member of the media talked to him about not having a win on either the PGA or Nationwide Tour, Watson scoffed at that fact and said, “Anyone can win a tournament, but no one out here can hit the tee ball as far as I can.” Kenny Perry hits it 50 yards behind Watson and he beat him head to head last week to win his second event of the year.
15. It’s kind of funny that Dave Trembley gets rattled anytime the media questions him about an in-game decision he makes. Someone asked him why he let Melvin Mora hit in a key situation against the Nats last Friday night and after Trembley explained himself, he ended it by saying, “and if people don’t understand that I did the right thing, they can go fly a kite…” Take it easy, Dave, none of us wants your job.
16. I read an article in a golf magazine that told the story about Gary Player giving a clinic at a golf course he was helping to design in California somewhere. At one point during the clinic, Player holed out three straight shots from a greenside bunker. I’ve played about 80 rounds of golf this year and I’ve holed out exactly ONE bunker shot. Player made three in a row in the span of two minutes. Wow.
17. If we ever hold a King of Baltimore Sports Media tournament, Scott Garceau will be a tough out. Congrats on a great 28-year run, Scott.
18. I’m probably the only guy who cares about this, but the Ravens are playing the top three teams with the best helmets in ’08. 3) Bengals, 2) Dolphins, 1) Texans
19. Baseball is a weird sport. Ronnie Belliard hits a game-winning home run for his team and the O’s bristled because they said he “hopped around the bases, whooping it up a little too much.” The entire NFL is built on taunting and showing up the other team and the other players. In baseball, you can’t even get excited if you hit a home run and win the game. Bizarre.