Tag Archive | "baltimore sun"

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Suggs continues his double talk over camp

Posted on 15 July 2009 by Nestor Aparicio

Today is the day. Either Terrell Suggs agrees to the deal the Ravens have put forth and becomes a long-term signee or he’ll be franchised at 4 p.m. and will have to suffer with a second year of detainment and a $10.2 million payday in 2009.

After telling The Los Angeles Times that training camp is “overrated” two weeks ago, Suggs told Jamison Hensley this in this morning’s fishwrap: “The fans want to see me in training camp on time, and I want to be there on time.”

A change of heart? Perhaps…but who can blame him about training camp? Not many are fond of the necessary evil.

But here’s the key fact for the day: there’s a contract for about $30 million in guaranteed money sitting on the table awaiting his wet signature. Of course by signing the current multi-year deal the Ravens are offering, it would indeed mean that he’d need to be in Westminster in 12 days.

Suggs told the world two weeks ago that the deal was “close” to a long-term agreement.

One thing is for sure: the deadline is now close and we’ll know more by the end of the day.

Either way, Suggs will be in uniform on Sept. 13 when the Chiefs come to town to start the Festivus season. So I’m not sweating it. Apparently, neither is Suggs.

If you want to be the first to know if Suggs inks a long-term deal, you can join our WNST Text Service here.

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Fan Grabs & Loses Wieters’ Homerun Ball …. And, Nestor Will Interview Him

Posted on 18 June 2009 by Rex Snider

Well, did you watch Matt Wieters’ first big league homerun fall into the first row of the left field bleachers? It barely got over the fence. But, when it did ….. Sam Mayfield was awaiting its arrival. And, he was the lucky guy to scurry around and finally come up with the prized pill.

As Wieters rounded the bases to the blasting thunder of Hells Bells, two people had their sights set on the guy holding the ball. I was one of them – but, I was coming from the lower box seats, behind homeplate. The other guy was a dreaded usher and he had a short walk down the stairs of Mayfield’s section.

By the time I reached the bleachers, Sam Mayfield was gone – he was whisked away to a super-secret location, according to his friends. I didn’t want the ball. But, I did want the story. And, that’s exactly what I got …..

About an hour later, I met and spoke with a very excited Sam Mayfield. He boasted about being a true baseball fan, while advising that he’d decided to trade the ball to the Orioles and Wieters, for a sum that was still being negotiated; a sum other than money.

I was happy for the Perry Hall resident.

Fast forward a couple hours and after watching George Sherrill retire the Mets to end the game, I headed home for a good night’s rest. Alas, before I reached the Anne Arundel County line, my cell-phone rang. It was Sam Mayfield and he wasn’t nearly as happy as he was the last time we talked.

According to Mayfield, he conferred with his wife, by phone, earlier in the evening and while meeting with Orioles officials. Together, they agreed to fork over the ball, in exchange for bringing his kids to the park for a personal meeting with Wieters and some autographed bats and balls.

Yet, when he left Camden Yards, he wasn’t feeling like the deal was honored. And, in reading Peter Schmuck’s post-game blog on The Baltimore Sun’s website, I’d say it sounds like Mayfield got a lot less than he bargained for …..

Let’s face it, I could regurgitate the entire story in the body of this blog, account by account, as Sam Mayfield related it. And, we’re just scratching the surface. But, why not hear it from the man, himself?

That’s right, it’s a one on one interview with the guy who nabbed and lost Wieters’ first homerun ball. It’s Sam Mayfield and Nestor Aparicio, at 4:15, this afternoon, on Limited Access. I can’t wait …..

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No Child Left Behind

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Crab Cakes and Light Beer

Posted on 08 June 2009 by Patrick Staso

Alright guys, this is intern “Steven” Patrick “Morrissey taking over for Chris Bonetti on the sports blog segment “Crab cakes and Light Beer”.

My first order of business, not wanting to cramp Chris’ style, is picking a new name for the blog.  Please submit your suggestions for a title, section titles, or things you want daily updates on as comments on this post.  I reserve the right to respectfully ignore your suggestions.  But, if no one comments, I’ll know no one actually took the time to read this and you can imagine I’d be heart broken and have to wake up at 4:45 every Monday Tuesday and Thursday for the rest of the summer to pour myself a sad sad bowl of cereal, drive a half awake half hour to Towson, and try to be funny for you guys.  So please, it’s for the kids.

No Child Left Behind

Now that we’ve cleared that up. Be glad that Sports Illustrated’s The Bottom 10. is based on player attitudes rather than player ability. Otherwise I don’t know how the Orioles could have possibly eluded the post.

On the other hand, Peter Schmuck at the Baltimore Sun has been doing some research, and has been kind enough to update us with the O’s performance over the past few weeks.

I don’t watch NASCAR, or particularly know anything about NASCAR.  But I found this entertaning

Speaking of performances, check out this jokester running up to Federer with a Barcelona flag at a French Open match.

The guy calls himself Jimmy Jump and apparently instigates all sorts of ruckus at a variety of matches.  You’ve got to hand it to him he’s pretty quick, but the most athletic ability displayed is in the security guard’s tackle.


Moving on.  Today while browsing the interwebs at the station I chanced upon this gallery of Baseball Uniforms that made me chuckle.  Oh Pete Rose.

I also found this little game you guys may enjoy.  I got all of about none right, so good luck, and God’s speed.

That’s all for me today.  I look forward to seeing at least one comment…. I’m setting my standards low so that I’ll hopefully succeed.

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Blog & Tackle: Cleaning out the notebook

Posted on 08 May 2009 by Chris Pika

It’s time to clean out the notebook from an active week in the sports world.

ITEM: Ravens mandatory mini-camp opens.
REVIEW: This is where those just drafted by the Ravens, including top pick Michael Oher, get their indoctrination into the NFL. Classroom sessions where new terminology and schemes are thrown at players at a dizzying rate of speed, time on the practice field where there is no hitting, but plenty of teaching of how to be in the right place at the right time and study time off the field to learn the large playbook cold by the start of training camp are all part of the first weekend as a pro.

They will get plenty of help on how to handle it from the veterans on hand. The phrase of the weekend you’ll hear from the rookies: “The speed of the game …”

It’s also a time for undrafted free agents to get a chance. Most will be bodies at this camp, but some might have a chance to make the 80-man roster going into training camp. Signing undrafted FAs is a tricky process, and I’ve seen a few who had agreed to sign, then after the press release goes out sign with another team. Many teams now wait until all UDFA contracts are signed before putting out an official release. The Ravens did theirs today on the first day of camp …

ITEM: Manny gets popped
REVIEW: I won’t go into all of the details that all over the internet, TV, etc., on what substance Manny Ramirez took to get the 50-game suspension. But I will make two small points. He elected not to appeal, so he knows he got caught with his hand in the jar for something. And I wonder if that long offseason soap opera of where he was going to play in 2009 that took to the start of spring training was orchestrated by Ramirez to get clear of an offseason steroid cycle before signing and reporting. Based on how he was detected, he probably should have waited a few more weeks.

The Dodgers look foolish for signing him, and the teams who didn’t, especially with Scott Boras’ salary demands, are quietly thankful they didn’t take the bait. And, how are fans in Boston feeling about Ramirez now. I know the clubhouse is probably having a quiet laugh about the suspension.

By the way, with all of the publicity on the tests, the Mitchell Report, A-Rod, etc., how do you put yourself in that position, allegedly. I didn’t know he wanted to get pregnant …

ITEM: The Sun gets lean by getting mean
REVIEW: The news out of Calvert Street, by way of the Orioles’ press box, of the firings of newsroom staff and editors is not laughable to those who are looking for work, but the way management did it is laughable. Calling two columnists in the press box and a photographer on duty at the game to tell them that they are being let go – callous. Calling another columnist to file before telling those who were supposed to that their services were no longer required – idiotic. Having security guards escort out valued employees before they had a chance to pack their personal belongings – brutal.

There has been plenty written on the firings, layoffs, and general buffoonery at The Sun. The people these cuts have hurt, outside of those directly affected, are all of us who read the paper in print or online. When I was growing up, I read three Baltimore papers – The Sun, The Evening Sun and the News-American. All had a different voice, and all of them kept local institutions honest by good investigative reporting and knowledge of the streets.

Now, the watchdog has fewer teeth, and those who remain know much less about the city they cover than the ones shown the door. That’s not a good thing for anyone who cares about Baltimore, or any city going through the same decline in newspaper coverage – or closures like Seattle or Denver recently.

Yes, web sites like this one, will fill some of the gap in coverage. But, the morning paper still serves as the “editor” for news and sports coverage given by radio, TV and the internet. We debate the things written in print, we consider the columnists’ voices and we decide for ourselves what we choose to believe. But we had the filter of those trained to cover the stories in print. Radio and TV give you immediacy of voices and video, the newspaper and the web gives the written word and perspective.

There will probably be a day where the printed newspaper doesn’t exist. That day in Baltimore might be closer than any of us realize under Sam Zell’s “leadership” for Tribune Co.

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Blog & Tackle: Sun sports pages take hit in cuts

Posted on 29 April 2009 by Chris Pika

If your morning Baltimore Sun looks thinner on Thursday, you can blame the Tribune Company, which reportedly made several cuts that impacted the sports pages (and the rest of the paper) in the last two days, according to DCRTV.com.

Gone from the sports desk, according to Dave Hughes of DCRTV.com, are columnists Rick Maese and David Steele, assistant sports editor/media columnist Ray Frager and assistant sports editor George VanDaniker. Sports reporter Bill Ordine was among those let go, according to The Real Muck, a Baltimore-area blog site run written by former Sun staffer David Ettlin.

In all, according to DCRTV.com, about 21 managerial-level employees were let go Tuesday, while 37 union-represented newsroom employees were released today in figures totaled by the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild (The Sun did not disclose job-loss figures.) According to the DCRTV.com story, some of the sports reporters found out while in the Oriole Park press box for today’s Orioles-Angels game.

A source in the Oriole Park press box told DCRTV late this afternoon that baseball writer Dan Connolly, who was originally reported by the web site to be one of the cuts, is still employed by The Sun. Another sports writer, Childs Walker, is being given an opportunity to return to the news desk according to DCRTV’s source.

In a press release from the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, the guild said that Tribune Co. plans to lay off 27 percent of the Sun’s newsroom staff, including four columnists. The 40 staffers who received notice today will be laid off by May 27.

According to the guild’s press release, since Tribune acquired The Sun in 1999, the newsroom staff has been cut by more than 60 percent to currently 148 employees from roughly 420.

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Signing Roberts Is The Right Thing To Do

Posted on 19 February 2009 by Alex Thomas

The Orioles are showing more promising signs of turning the franchise around under Andy MacPhail. Signing Brian Roberts to a contract extension is the right thing to do, both on and off the field.

According to the Baltimore Sun, Brian Roberts and the O’s are close to inking a four-year contract extension. Roberts is slated to make $8 million this season, so the terms of the contract extension would not begin until the 2010 campaign.

It appears as though Roberts wants to be an Oriole, despite having never played a meaningful game in his career and despite the deplorable way the team treated him during the negotiation process.

On the field, Roberts has arguably been the best lead-off hitter in the majors. He has a .284 life-time average, and has hit at least 40 doubles in four of the past five seasons. He’s also been a base-stealing machine, collecting 40 steals last year and swiping 50 bags in 2007.

The Orioles had to extend Roberts’ contract, because despite all of the promising pitching they have down in the farm, they have exactly ZERO second baseman prospects who will be ready to play major league ball in four or five years.

And with Matt Weiters coming up at some point this season, the Orioles are just one solid short stop away from being completely solid up the middle. I’m not sold on Cesar Izturis, but Roberts, Weiters, and Adam Jones will make the Orioles defensively sound in the middle of the diamond.

Off the field, Roberts has been the Orioles most prominent figure in the community through his work with the University of Maryland Children’s Hospital.

Quick, name another Oriole who has done something like that for the Baltimore community.

I’d bet a dollar that you can’t.

Considering the atrocious way the Orioles as an organization have reached out to their fans and the city, or lack thereof, Brian Roberts has been their saving grace in the community.

He deserves the pay-raise because of that alone, not to mention dealing with the clowns in the dugout and in the Warehouse who have left their stink on the Orioles franchise over the past decade.

And B-Rob is probably the Orioles’ most popular player locally and their most recognizable name nationally. This signing makes Roberts the face of the Baltimore baseball in 2009, and who better to be the face of an organization?

So I take my hat off to Brian Roberts, and the Baltimore Orioles, for doing the right thing.

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Larry Bigbie tells his side of the story

Posted on 14 February 2009 by caseywillett

Larry Bigbie tells his side of the story as it relates to all the connections to him in baseball’s steroid saga. Here is the story that was done by the Baltimore Sun.

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Should Phelps Swim in the 2012 Olympics?

Posted on 10 February 2009 by Alex Thomas

The Baltimore Sun is reporting that Michael Phelps will take a few months to decide whether or not he will compete in the 2012 London games.

Phelps was interviewed by the Sun after practice at the Meadowbrook swimming complex and talked about his Olympic future. “It will take a few months. I’ll give it 30 or 60 days.”

Phelps said that he was frequently awaken in the middle of the night to people screaming outside of his apartment, and that the paparazzi was basically stalking him.

“I’m not feeling too good physically, but I’m actually able to sleep now. I had a real hard time sleeping over the last two weeks or so. Just swimming and thinking about everything going on. Everything is back to what I call normal, I guess.”

I think that Phelps should swim in the 2012 games. He has an opportunity to win more gold medals, and try to collect an unprecedented 20 gold medals overall. But more importantly, it would show that he’s not going to run and hide from this controversy.

So far, Phelps has held himself accountable and has taken every punishment he’s received like a man, which is pretty commendable.

He didn’t have to admit that it was him in the picture.

He could have been upset about his 3 month suspension from USA Swimming. But he wasn’t…in fact, he said it was a fair sanction.

If he doesn’t swim, the last memory the general public will have of Phelps would not be the 8 gold medals he won in Beijing. It would be the picture of him pulling hippie lettuce through a big glass bong. I’d hate to go out like that.

If he does come back, he’ll certainly have to relive the Bong Water Gate incident in 2012. He’ll have to answer questions that he’s already answered a million times. He’ll have to deal with more public scrutiny. People will call into WNST and talk about that picture.

But that may be the last that we hear of it, especially if he swims well.

One thing’s for sure. Phelps called A-Rod and Tejada to personally thank them for using steroids. All of the ‘roids news has successfully distracted the national media from the most famous bong hit in the history of weed.

So what do you think? Should Phelps swim or not?

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Bong Water Gate Rolls On; Kellogg's Drops Phelps

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Bong Water Gate Rolls On; Kellogg’s Drops Phelps

Posted on 06 February 2009 by Alex Thomas

Even though Kellogg’s recently dropped Michael Phelps from their advertising campaign, all hope is not lost in his cereal marketing career. Maybe he can become the new spokesman for General Mills. In fact, thanks to PopCulturePost.com, here’s a sneak preview at Phelps’ next marketing venture:

Joking aside, the picture of Phelps pulling tubes at a South Carolina frat party has exploded onto the international media wire. With this type of exposure, you have to think that this may not be the only incriminating picture of Phelps floating around out there.

And on the heels of being dropped by Kellogg’s, USA Swimming suspended Phelps for three months without pay. While Phelps will still be allowed to practice, he will not be able to compete in the Austin Grand Prix in early March, a short course meet which he originally planned to attend.

“I think it sends a message to Michael, and we’re certainly going to abide by it,” Bob Bowman, Phelps’ coach, told the Baltimore Sun. “He’s eager to be back in training, and looking to move forward.”

You had to see this coming. After all of the negative media attention and the unfair public scrutiny, Phelps’ sponsors were bound to bail and USA Swimming had to act.

While this three month suspension is just short of a slap on the wrist, it certainly sends a message to the general public that USA Swimming does not condone this behavior.

The good news for Michael Phelps is that most of his sponsors have issued statements of support, including Speedo, Hilton Hotels, Omega, Visa, and Mazda.

Hopefully all of this will go away soon, but it seems highly unlikely. Personally, while I’ve had Phelps’ back in the face of some ridiculous public scrutiny, I want to reiterate that I certainly don’t condone his behavior.

He got a three month suspension because he had a brief moment of stupidity, and we all have a few of those in our twenties. The most important thing is learning from the mistake and not allowing history to repeat itself.

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“Let’s hope it doesn’t get to that point”

Posted on 23 January 2009 by caseywillett

Those were the words from Ozzie Newsome in an article today by Mike Preston in the Baltimore Sun, regarding Ray Lewis and the use of the franchise tag on him this off season.

This comes just a day after owner Steve Bisciotti said he did not see the team using the franchise tag on Lewis. A lot of this will depend on where they are in the negotiations with Terrell Suggs regarding a long term contract.

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