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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 04 August 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because I haven’t had a chance to post a “Greatest Song of All Time This Week” this week, and it gives me pass along the same message I passed along yesterday via Facebook (Feel free to add me as a friend-just search for “Glenn Clark” and find the guy in the Dan Wilcox jersey hanging out at Artscape).

I have no idea how Train-who I think is an overly solid band-managed to make such a garbage song as that “Hey Soul Sister” nonsense, but thank God their next single “If It’s Love” is much better…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxWK3qACDGk[/youtube]

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP’s Howard Fendrich says Jeremy Guthrie pitched Orioles past Angels in Buck Showalter’s debut

Yes-I lead with Jeremy Guthrie instead of Buck Showalter. Last night was much more about Jeremy Guthrie than it was about Showalter.

The one thing that Jeremy Guthrie has given this team for the better part of the year is a feeling that they have a chance to win a game.

The Birds couldn’t do much of anything against Trevor Bell last night, but thanks to Jeremy Guthrie keeping them in it-they were finally able to break through when Los Angeles (of Anaheim) went to the pen. Thanks Mike Scioscia!

That being said, you could tell there was a heightened sense of excitement in Baltimore last night, which is what SHOULD come in the first game under a legitimate MLB manager. The question now is whether or not that excitement can continue for SOME sort of prolonged period of time.

My guess is no-mostly because the players on the field are terrible. Not much can be done about that over the next two months. I’ll hope I’m wrong-but the evidence doesn’t suggest I would be.

2. The AP/WNST.net provide numerical evidence of win

Ho.Ly.Crap.

Felix Pie stole a base.

I thought it was a little strange when they stopped the game and removed the base; then brough Pie a mic for him to make a Rickey Henderson-type speech on the field. BUT-I understand that it was such a rare occurance they probably didn’t know how to handle it.

It was nice to see Pie have a solid night after fans were given Pie t-shirts. I’m not sure who picked up mine for me, but I’m at least one of you saevd one for me, right? It was also a big night for Matt Wieters, Josh Bell and of course Luke Scott. I hope we’ll see more of all of that.

Of course, I’m so used to saying “you don’t really want to look at the numbers” that I’m always confused when I don’t have to say that. With that in mind, why don’t you look at this picture of WWE’s Kelly Kelly (Thanks Don Chavez!) AND look at the numbers linked above. It’s a win-win!

kellykelly

3. Carroll County Times’ Rich Dubroff says Showalter spent Tuesday afternoon chatting with Nick Markakis, Brian Roberts, O’s veterans

The fact is that if the Orioles are going to be competitive at ANY point in the next 4 years, they’re going to have to build around Nick Markakis and hopefully Matt Wieters. Brian Roberts still has 2 years under contract, but is no longer a franchise-type player even when healthy. Adam Jones has talent, but his mistakes and mentality make him more of a “commodity” than a cornerstone.

Markakis is the guy. He’s under contract for 4 more years. He may not be a REAL franchise player in Major League Baseball, but he’s the closest we have in Charm City. Matt Wieters is under control for a few more years as well, so that’s what you build around.

The team is hoping they can build a rotation around some young pitchers as well; but assuming that Brian Matusz, Jake Arrieta or Chris Tillman are there already is a mistake. They cannot be penciled in yet.

That’s what Showalter has. Now he has to work with Andy MacPhail to improve it. I think it goes without saying that I’m not overly hopeful.

4. The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Birds to open 2011 season at Tampa Bay Rays April 1, host Opening Day at OPACY April 4 against Detroit Tigers

It doesn’t reflect tradition, but I will admit that I really enjoyed having the home opener on a Friday this year. I was excited to hear that baseball was moving the opener to Friday; so I’m disappointed to hear that the Orioles’ opener will be on the road.

Of course, I’m mostly saying that because it impacts my beer drinking schedule. Day drinking on a Friday > day drinking on a Monday. If it drags into the evening hours, it’s way better to not have to wake up the next morning.

Of course-if you’re drinking Flying Dog Tire Bite; any day is a good day for day drinking…

tirebite

5. Baysox.com says despite continued torrid play from Joe Mahoney, Bowie couldn’t top Portland Sea Dogs on farm

And before we move on from the Orioles, a couple of things…

-The Birds and Halos are back in action tonight at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. First pitch between Dan Haren and Jake Arrieta is at 7:05pm, and the game can be seen on MASN. Dan Haren has yet to pick up a win since coming to the American League. My guess it that will change tonight, but I’ll be rooting that it doesn’t.

-If you get the chance to check out Drew’s Rick Dempsey blog today at WNST.net, it’s worth the read. I feel SOMEWHAT bad for Rick, as I know he badly wants the job-but I think at this point the two parties are going to have to part ways.

-Did you miss Baysox pitcher Wynn Pelzer (the player acquired from the San Diego Padres in the Miguel Tejada deal) with Drew Forrester this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST? If you did, make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net to check it out. Other guests this morning included:

  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk.com/NBC Sports)-who discussed the Brett Favre drama and all things NFL
  • Ryan Sharrow (Baltimore Business Journal)-who broke down the messy divorce between MASN and the Ravens
  • Brad Johansen (Cincinnati Bengals Radio PBP Voice)-who previewed Cincy as we go around the AFC North this week

They’re all in the Audio Vault now if you want to check them out. Some other things in the Audio Vault worth checking out include…

  • Fabian Washington (Ravens CB)-who joined Thyrl Nelson following practice Tuesday
  • Matt Williams (Arizona Diamondbacks 1B Coach)-the former D-Backs and San Francisco Giants slugger who played for Buck Showalter in Phoenix; who joined Rex Snider and Allen McCallum Tuesday afternoon
  • Sean Salisbury (former NFL QB)-who discussed Brett Favre and the Ravens with Rex Tuesday
  • All sorts of audio from Westminster Tuesday-including John Harbaugh, Jared Gaither, Terrell Suggs, Haloti Ngata, Ralph Friedgen and Ken Niumatalolo

So there you go. Your afternoon is planned out for you. Enjoy!

6. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Ravens WR Derrick Mason hurt ankle at Training Camp Tuesday, but injury ‘doesn’t appear serious’

Of course the hit would come from Dawan Landry. I think that’s a rule at McDaniel College.

WNST.net’s Luke Jones reported that Mason did not practice Wednesday morning (follow us on Twitter @WNST)-but after talking to him yesterday, I don’t get the feeling that the injury will keep him out for an extended period of time. In fact, I bet we’ll see him on the field Saturday at M&T Bank Stadium if not before. Just a hunch on my part.

By the way, both Drew and I named Derrick Mason the Number 1 “Most Dramatic” player in Ravens history in our “Training Camp Top 5″ this morning. Drew’s list:

5-Matt Stover
4-Shannon Sharpe
3-Chris McAlister
2-John Harbaugh
1-Derrick Mason

My list:

5-Jermaine Lewis
4-Chris McAlister
3-Ed Reed
2-Ray Lewis
1-Derrick Mason

7. CSNBaltimore.com’s John Eisenberg says Jared Gaither plans to ‘put weight back on’

I’m really not all that concerned with Jared Gaither’s weight. He’s always been a more athletic tackle; and I think he will work things out in terms of body size.

What I’m more concerned about is what’s going to happen if and when Harbaugh stops flipping Gaither and Michael Oher between positions and finally decides to have Oher play LT and Gaither play RT. Gaither said yesterday he’d play anywhere the team wants him to and he’d “abide by” Coach Harbs; but we need to see that on the field to accept it.

You know who doesn’t need to put any weight on at all? Christina Moustaka. She’s just fine. (Thanks NextRound.net!)…

moustaka

8. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says WBAL, Comcast SportsNet options for Ravens after MASN partnership ended

We’ll make this easy. I don’t know how many people actually tuned in to watch the John Harbaugh Show or Purple Passion or whatever the hell those shows are called on MASN; but NOBODY will be tuning in to channel 11.1 to see them on WBAL’s digital subchannel. Fans might be willing to stream the shows on BaltimoreRavens.com, but they really need a better on-air alternative.

Using Comcast SportsNet PLUS, their COULD be room for them with CSN-but CSN is ABSOLUTELY intertwined with the Washington Redskins. These wouldn’t be strange bedfellows, these would be absolutely uncomfortable bedfellows. Of course, there aren’t many other options. Perhaps a WNUV 54 or maybe WUTB 24 could be options, but they wouldn’t be ideal.

It’s a shame these parties couldn’t get this worked out; hopefully something could still be figured out in the future.

Before I move on from the Ravens, a couple of things:

-Luke Jones is out at McDaniel College again today, where we are expected to hear from John Harbaugh, Matt Birk, Michael Oher and the commish-Roger Goodell. All of it will be up in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault later today.

-Jameel McClain continues to get the majority of the snaps inside next to Ray Lewis with the first team. It looks more and more like he’s moved ahead of Dannell Ellerbe and Tavares Gooden on the depth chart.

9. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen, Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo tell media in Westminster they’d like to face each other more often

There’s no doubt in my mind that the Terrapins and Midshipmen should get together every other year, and M&T Bank Stadium is the ideal location to host the “Crab Bowl Classic.”

The successor to Debbie Yow in College Park will have a large say in whether or not this gets done, but sources there have told me before that the school would LIKE to play a game in Baltimore every other year (and play a game at FedEx Field every other year as well).

You know what else I’d like to see more often? Denmark’s Celina Hilslev; who was apparently on the cover of something called M! (Thanks Guyism!)…

hilslev

10. NavySports.com says former Duke standout Greg Paulus joins Midshipmen staff as assistant coach

As a Terps alum, I won’t root for the Mids on Labor Day (or any other time they play Maryland in any other sport); but for the most part-I consider myself a Navy supporter.

So with that being said, how could they POSSIBLY hire a Dukie?!?!? Only John Feinstein could be happy about this!

I’ll wish Paulus the best on Billy Lange’s staff; but I certainly won’t shy away from channeling Peter Rosenberg once more…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYOgC2Qbqh4[/youtube]

And finally, I leave you with this…

I got the chance to wander up to Bel Air yesterday afternoon and play some kickball. No seriously. The good news was that was actually NOT the worst player on the field, nor was I the most out of shape. In honor of that, I rewarded myself with Qdoba and Natty Boh.

We weren’t great, but we certainly weren’t as bad as this…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YedQBGAI_qI[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Orioles: Two months to go, nothing to play for…except these 5 things

Posted on 31 July 2010 by Drew Forrester

A week or so into the Orioles 2010 season – marred by a pair of 3-game drubbings at home by Toronto and Tampa Bay – I was already baseball’d out.

48 hours into Ravens camp and I’m already “injury’d out”.

So rather than write what everyone else is writing – “everything’s going to be just fine” or “the sky is falling, we might not win 6 games” – about the Ravens, I’ll go back to the well one more time and offer a few observations about our orange feathered friends.

With the debut of Buck Showalter as manager on Tuesday, I figured it’s time to take a good look at the remaining two months of the season and list some of the things that REALLY matter between now and the end of September.

As we know, the 2010 baseball season in Baltimore is over.  But the 2011 season is sort-of starting right now, for several players have “something to prove” in the final 60 days of the campaign.  I’m not talking about how Adam Jones finishes the season (he’s going to be on the team next season and start in center field) or how Matt Wieters finishes (he’s the catcher here…period) or whether or not Brian Roberts ends his season next week or finishes the year playing regularly (he’s going to be the 2nd baseman on opening day next year).

I’m talking about the unknown.  These are the things we don’t know…and things that matter over the last two months as it pertains to the start of 2011.

1. Who’s the closer? I’m not saying this because Alfredo Simon coughed up the game last night, but I don’t think he’s the closer of the future for the Orioles.  You know what you get with him.  A guy who usually puts at least one runner on base in a close-out situation, if not more.  Some nights, he escapes, some nights, he doesn’t.  I’d like to see the club use David Hernandez in the closer role and give him a legitimate shot at either earning the job heading into 2011 or throwing it up for grabs.  He, like Simon, is prone to the occasional walk, but I think he has better command of his fastball than Simon and, to me, he’s just more dependable.  I think the club has some “live arms” in the bullpen.  Let’s use the last two months to figure out which one is best suited to close in 2011.  And before you say it…no, it’s NOT Mike Gonzalez.

2.  Can Luke Scott play first base? In a short sample of work (21 games over two season), Scott has been adequate at first base, with three errors in all.  With each game, he seems a bit more comfortable to me.  Here’s what I DO know:  Luke can’t play left field.  Here’s what I DON’T know:  Can he play first base on a regular basis (meaning, 120 games) and still be productive at the plate and field the position well enough to justify earning the status of “starting first baseman”?  I’d use the last 55 or so games to really figure that out and if Scott handles the situation decently, I’d be willing to look at him as the incumbent first baseman next year.  That is, unless we go out and buy a big free-agent first-baseman/quality hitter in the winter.  Never mind, you already know the answer to that.  Let’s see what Luke can do.

3.  What’s the Pie factor? Since the All-Star break, Felix Pie has become Felix Pie again, hitting roughly .190 and striking out more times than Clinton got monthly visits from Monica.  At times, Pie looks like a project worth keeping around.  Despite his recent struggles, he’s become more selective at the plate and his power potential looks better than it did a year ago.  But he’s still not done enough to warrant earning a full-time role in the outfield, no matter what happens with Nolan Reimold in the minor leagues.  If I’m the Orioles, I think long and hard about Carl Crawford regardless of what Pie does between now and the end of the season (and if that means shipping out Reimold in a deal for something of quality, I’d think about that, too).  But in the meantime – not knowing what Crawford will do and assuming the Orioles won’t pay him, anyway – I’d go ahead and keep playing Felix every night in left field and use the last 55 games to figure out whether or not he’s the man in 2011.  It would be nice if he could stay healthy for longer than 6 weeks, too.  We’ll have to see about that.

4.  Can the Bell ring? I don’t have much to go on, granted, but I’m not “feelin’ it” with Josh Bell so far.  He’s a wild, free-swinger at the plate and I don’t see the natural athleticism in the field at 3rd base.  That said…he’s in the January of his major league career and he needs time to show if he can do it or not.  With Tejada gone, it’s obvious that the Orioles are going to go with Bell throughout the remainder of the season.  But I hope they’re not just playing him to play him.  I hope they’re evaluating him as well.  If he doesn’t show enough quality in the field, there might be a need for some off-season shopping to bring in someone at the hot corner.  And no, I don’t mean Miguel Tejada Visit #3.  I mean a real 3rd baseman. If Bell is decent in the field and shows improvement at the plate, he’ll be the starter in 2011.  I’m not feelin’ it yet, but I’m willing to give him more time.

5.  Izzy worth one more year? Face the facts, we’re an organization that doesn’t spend a lot of money on players, so ANY opening that requires a check to someone – particularly a big one – might be met with a patchwork effort.  That’s how Cesar Izturis got here in the first place…MacPhail didn’t want to spend real money on a high-profile shortstop.  Anyway, two years later, Izturis is again a free agent and the Orioles will enter the off-season without someone to play that position in 2011.  This “Izturis debate” would be moot if we had someone in the wings waiting to come up and take the gig.  We don’t have that player.  So…in his two years here, has Izturis done enough to warrant a new deal?  Maybe.  I’d use the last two months to really look at him, study the numbers and decide if it’s worth bringing him back for ONE more year (assuming he’ll take a one-year deal) and use that money to try and lure Crawford to Baltimore in the off-season.  I know Izturis isn’t a great player.  But he’s a dependable defensive player and an occasionally adequate offensive contributor.  He’s been more involved in rallies and wins this year than you’re willing to give him credit for, I can assure you of that.  I’m not saying DEFINITELY bring him back.  I’m saying it might be worth CONSIDERING bringing him back and I’d use the last 55 games to give him a quiet audition.  One more thing about the benefit of having Izturis around:  When you fill out the lineup card, SOMEONE has to bat 9th.

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Friday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Friday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 30 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Friday!

It’s a Happy Friday for me because after the Ultimate Frisbee highlight on Deadspin the other day that I posted in my “Top 10 Baseball Distractions” column; apparently Deadspin got the idea that Ultimate Frisbee highlights may be even cooler than videos of guys getting dunked on…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kst2yrNJolY[/youtube]

Freaking awesome. I want to be exactly like Beaufort Kittredge. Other than the name-as long as I get to keep the trust fund.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Orioles ‘finally’ hired Buck Showalter as manager

I’ll save you the “I told you they’d hire him after the Ravens reported to Westminster” comments. Wait. Sorry!

I guess the “breaking” part of this “breaking news” is lessened because we knew this was coming-having been reported by Ken Rosenthal as a “done deal” before the All-Star Game. (Edit from GMC: Ken Rosenthal would know.) But it is still significant when a team hires a manager, even if it is a team that hasn’t played a meaningful game in well over a decade.

A handful of folks in town are excited about Showalter. The rest of the folks in town would only be excited if he could play CB. Count me in the group that’s interested, but by no means excited. I’d be excited if he was bringing Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling with him; as well as Mark Teixeira and Nelson Cruz. Otherwise, I’ll withhold excitement until I know that they’re going to get some real players.

Connie Mack would need better players to win in Charm City-and from everything I can tell, Buck Showalter is no Connie Mack. But I’d love to see him don a similar hat…

2. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Birds hoping Showalter can be ‘miracle worker’

There is a significant question about how much control Showalter is going to have of the organization, specifically personnel. He’s been known to be a control freak, but he’s going to be working for a President of Baseball Operations (Andy MacPhail) who laid the groundwork for the team’s “Plan”, and an owner (Peter Angelos) who has a history of meddling even when it’s been said that he gave up control.

Of course, this is where some will make the argument that the addition of Showalter could be a signal of the end of the MacPhail regime. That could very well be true. I’m not yet sure whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing yet.

If it’s a “miracle worker” the Birds were looking for, I’m not sure why they didn’t consider Francesca Frigo (Thanks Next Round!)…

frigo

3. The AP’s Bernie Wilson says O’s traded Miguel Tejada to San Diego Padres for RHP prospect Wynn Pelzer

In the words of Veronica Corningstone: Miguel Tejada, “Thanks for stopping by.”

There won’t really be too many memories of the 2nd Miguel Tejada tenure in Baltimore-although he played exactly as many meaningful games this time around as he did the first; but the team does get a player in exchange that could end up turning into…something?

Pelzer is by no means a “top prospect” in the Pads’ organization, but is a guy who could offer something moving forward. I talked to a couple of MLB personnel guys last night about Pelzer-and the responses I got ranged from “good arm” to “live arm” to “will be better as a reliever than as a starter” to “big league ready soon” to “needs to match mentally what he has physically.”

I never get too excited about a minor league player (no matter who they are), and that won’t change with Pelzer. Although-he IS a South Carolina guy, so hopefully we can chat about Hootie & The Blowfish. There just isn’t enough of that in the world.

4. WNST.net’s Ryan Chell says part of Andy MacPhail’s reasoning for Tejada trade was to get Josh Bell back to Baltimore

Which is fine-as long as the organization isn’t thinking that they have “the answer” at 3B and can’t consider an upgrade in the offseason. Josh Bell may end up being a very good player; but if the team wants to win-they need real major league players at every position; not a group of guys who might end up being real major league players.

That being said, my guess is that the organization’s brass will do everything in their power to make sure that Bell is the Opening Day 3B in April. If that’s the case, I hope he spends the rest of the year looking like Matt Williams.

I just have a bad feeling it might not happen.

5. The AP says Corey Patterson’s homer, Ty Wigginton’s sac fly lead Birds past Kansas City Royals in 11 innings

Hey Hey! That’s win number 1 after the season ended on Sunday-and it only took extra innings against one of the OTHER worst teams in baseball to get it done!

Brian Matusz threw 3 innings of no-hit ball last night. I’m not really sure what happened after that, but the three innings were really good! (Edit from GMC: Thank God we stopped the whole “Apologist of the Morning” thing. I’d win going away…)

Nice to see Corey Patterson playing the role of “hero” again after that grand slam to tie things up against the Texas Rangers in the 9th a few weeks ago in Arlington. He’ll savor these memories when he’s doing…whatever it is he’ll be doing…next season.

Of course, despite the new regime…I wouldn’t be stunned at all if Corey Patterson lined up in Left Field at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in April 2011…or at least on the bench. He’s exactly the type of player the organization loves.

6. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of win

I have no idea how to handle this. I’m so used to saying “you don’t want to look at this” that I don’t know how to go about saying “you might actually want to look at this.”

Nick Markakis also homered last night-which has been much to rare this season.

You know what, look at the numbers-celebrate them-and then take a look at Jakki Degg. It’s a win-win! (Thanks Barstool Sports!)

jakkidegg

7. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Chris Tillman struggled for Norfolk Tides, Joel Guzman homered for Bowie Baysox on farm

Before we move on from the Orioles, a few things:

-The O’s and Royals are back at it in KC tonight. Jake Arrieta faces Sean O’Sullivan-with first pitch from Kauffman Stadium at 8:10pm on MASN2. Like I said yesterday, I’ll go with a split this weekend.

-Did you miss former MLB Scout Frankie Piliere on “The Morning Reaction” with Drew Forrester on AM1570 WNST discussing Wynn Pelzer and other trade deadline stuff? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out. Other guests included:

  • Craig Calcaterra (NBCSports.com “HardballTalk”)-who went around MLB, touching on Strasburg, Oswalt, etc.
  • Rich Dubroff (Carroll County Times)-who discussed the Showalter hiring and the impact it will have on the Birds
  • Dan Wilcox (Former Ravens TE)-who discussed Training Camp and more

It’s all in the Audio Vault if you want to check it out.

8. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Todd Heap placed on non-football illness list, Rodelin Anthony & Fabian Washington activated from PUP list

The Fabian Washington news is REALLY good news, and the Todd Heap news really isn’t that bad. The Rodelin Anthony news happened.

This team needs their top corners healthy. With no offense to Cary Williams or Travis Fisher or Walt Harris, they’re just not great options. At least one of them will end up making the team-but this organization is certainly better off not having any of them suit up.

Of course-early reports from practice today say neither Fabian nor Dominique Foxworth were practicing; so we’ll have to follow that. Just when all of the news was starting to be good…

9. USA Today’s Gary Graves says Ravens not ‘shying away’ from Super Bowl discussion as full Training Camp begins at McDaniel College

Nor should they be. They’ve been a Super Bowl contender ever since they acquired Anquan Boldin.

For the record, I’m not shying away from the fact that Shannon James is ridiculously hot despite the fact that she’s wearing a Philadelphia Phillies shirt (Thanks Busted Coverage!)…

shannonjames

10. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Ravens owner Bisciotti believes Sergio Kindle will be with Ravens for ‘long time’

Which is why the conversations about liability, etc. earlier this week were so ridiculous. The Ravens want to give Sergio Kindle a contract and are GOING to give Sergio Kindle a contract. He’s going to get plenty of money-but they’re not going to pay him for the time he wasn’t working. The contract structure will be the same, it will just reflect the fact that he wasn’t working for a while.

Questions continue regarding Kindle’s accident. It seems as though folks are accepting the possible narcolepsy explanation from his former Longhorns coach Mack Brown as a factual explanation-which is just as dangerous as accepting any of the possible explanations regarding alcohol, etc. that were thrown around earlier this week.

The fact remains that we still don’t know. Hopefully we will know soon.

11. ESPNNewYork.com’s Ohm Youngmisuk says former ST/WR David Tyree to retire with New York Giants

Eh, one more time, why not?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-aKfTK2LiM[/youtube]

(Edit from GMC: Watching that again just reminds me how terrible Joe Buck is. It was one of the greatest moments in Super Bowl history and he treated it like it was a routine first down in a regular season game. Ugh.)

And finally, I leave you with this.

“Dinner For Schmucks” opens tonight. It isn’t getting great reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but Zach Galifianakis is HILARIOUS…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TrY29ixBGc[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Gremlins and Uncle Buck

Posted on 30 July 2010 by Erich Hawbaker

I first sat down to write this blog upon hearing that the Orioles had hired Buck Showalter to be the next captain of the Titanic. I then started all over again upon hearing that Miguel Tejada has once again been traded by the Orioles to a contending NL team. I guess I’ll deal with the second one first.

Unlike the last Tejada trade, which netted the O’s five players (including my main man Luke Scott), this time they got only one pitching prospect and are still on the hook for over half of Tejada’s salary. Now I know that Miggy is getting to the end of his career, and that we only had him for one year, but he was still hitting .269 with 7 HR and 39 RBIs. Is one AA pitcher really all that he was worth? And you didn’t even get the Padres to pick up all of his contract? I’m not faulting the front office for trading him if somebody was interested (since 3B was going to Josh Bell next year anyway), but couldn’t they have bargained for a little more in return? Like, maybe, a hitter? ANY hitter? Much like the last deal we made with San Diego, in which we basically gave them Oscar Salazar for a song, this is not a solid prima facie case for the Orioles.

Anyway, new acquisition Wynn Pelzer is high-ranked prospect in the Padres organization. At 24 years old, he’s been both a starter and reliever in his 3-year career in the minors, pitching around 100 innings a year, putting up just over 8 K/9, and maintaining a 3.83 ERA. Decent I guess. But lately, I think we’ve all learned a painful lesson. The dirtiest word in baseball is ‘prospect’. A couple years ago, Brian Matusz was a top prospect. He ended up spending only one year in the minors, and with his abundance of Ks and ERA barely over 2.00, we all expected him to be our new ace. And yet, as of today, his ERA is 5.22 and his record is 3-11. Now, I know that Matusz is still pretty young and that it’s much easier to win games when your team actually scores you some runs on a consistent basis, but at this point it is fair to say that he hasn’t lived up to the hype yet. Will Pelzer? I don’t know. Nobody does. He’s a prospect.

In other news, Buck Showalter is now the manager. I was really pulling for Rick Dempsey, but deep down I knew they’d never give it to him. However, I do think that Showalter will make things better. We all know that he has a reputation for being a hardass and a history of turning losing teams into winners. And while no other team he ever managed was nearly as awful as this one, he seems to think he can do it and I think I believe him. He says we have potential here, and he’s right about that much. I don’t doubt that he can get our guys to the point where they’re playing as well as they could be. But the real question is- even if our engine as currently built is firing on all eight cylinders, will that be enough to challenge the Yankees, Red Sox, and Rays? That’s where my doubts come in.

You have to remember something. For the last decade or so, Tampa Bay was in the basement with us (and, like us, they’re a “small market” team *cough cough*). Theoretically both teams should have spent those years drafting high and growing a fresh crop of young players. One could have easily predicted that the Rays and O’s would be steadily rising thru the standings together. The fact that we went absolutely nowhere while Tampa Bay went to the World Series is the most glaring indictment of our clueless front office. They drafted smart, traded smart, and produced a winner while we sat on our hands.

I don’t think Buck Showalter will put up with that. He will do everything he can to win. But, when he gets to the point where he goes upstairs asking for you-know-who to make an investment in winning, will he get what he needs to finish the job? I don’t know. That’s where my skepticism lies. I haven’t forgotten what happened to Davey Johnson.

 

 

Some people have told me that they wonder where I get my weird titles for my blogs. In this case, the reference is to two movies from the 1980s that I enjoyed as a kid. Peltzer (very close to Pelzer) was the last name of Billy, the boy who got a pet Mogwai for Christmas in Gremlins. Uncle Buck was an absolutely hilarious comedy starring John Candy, whom my grandma loved and frequently told me I looked like. I sincerely hope you all can forgive my little bit of wackyness. .

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Taking A Look At All Angles of Tejada Trade

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Taking A Look At All Angles of Tejada Trade

Posted on 29 July 2010 by Ryan Chell

A lot of the buzz today was around the Orioles hiring Buck Showalter as manager.

As expected by the WNST staff, mostly from our own Glenn Clark, the Orioles did this one day before the initial full Ravens practice at McDaniel College on Friday.

And then, the Orioles management must have felt that Showalter’s hire was garnering enough attention. We knew it was going to happen, but we didn’t feel like the Orioles were going to beat at it some more and pound it on us Baltimore fans.

So of course, what did they do?

Orioles owner Peter Angelos and Andy MacPhail “huddled up” and said, “Hey people aren’t turning their heads. We have to do something else.”

So hours after the Showalter hire, the Orioles shipped third baseman Miguel Tejada to the Padres around 4:30 PM for minor league pitching prospect Wynn Pelzer.

Wynn Pelzer

And while this wasn’t the biggest trade going down of the day(Astros ace Roy Oswalt was traded to the Phillies for J.A. Happ and others,  Marlins INF Jorge Cantu went to Texas for two Double-A pitchers, Nationals reliever Matt Capps may be packing his bags for Minnesota), this certainly is news here in Baltimore showing that the Orioles management is getting things rolling.

Which way though is yet to be seen.

The Orioles had talks with the Cardinals early this morning about moving Tejada, to either put him at shortstop instead of Brendan Ryan or at third base instead of a scrappy hitter like Felipe Lopez.

The Padres meanwhile sit atop the NL West this year(3.5 games ahead of the Giants), and are one of the surprise teams out there, given their struggles from a year ago.

Bringing in a veteran hitter like Tejada, and one who has made the move to third base productively, is certainly a valuable addition to the team.

“This move was made because we feel it makes us better,” Padres GM Jed Hoyer told the Associated Press. “It gives us a player in several positions and it gives us a veteran leader.”

Miguel Tejada

What the Orioles get in return for this is not a top prospect like pitchers Mat Latos, Simon Castro, Corey Luebke or OF Donovan Tate, but a Double-A pitcher in Pelzer who was the seventh-rated prospect in the San Diego’s system.

He is a guy known for his plus-fastball, but since being taken in the 9th round of the 2007 draft, the former closer at South Carolina has been inconsistent, has a tendency to walk guys, and has seen his velocity drop each year in the minors.

He can hit as high as 97 MPH on the gun, and also has a good slider and a change-up that could be effective given his velocity if he fine-tunes it.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nLP3qKuLjc&feature=related[/youtube]

And on top of all this, the Orioles sent in excess of a million dollars to help the Padres clear the rest of Tejada’s 6-million dollar contract.

A former starter, Pelzer would appear to have a better psyche and makeup to be a reliever. The Padres saw this as well at times.

Pelzer was 6-9 for San Diego’s Double-A affiliate, San Antonio, this year with a 4.20 ERA and a WHIP of 1.66. Not exactly the best numbers in the world.

Pelzer will fit right into the other question marks most likely at Double A Bowie, including the likes of Steve Johnson, who the Orioles got in a trade last year with the Dodgers for George Sherrill.

What this really does is give the other piece of the Sherrill trade, Josh Bell, his chance to shine.

Josh Bell

Bell has already been with the big league club twice this year in two different stints. He likely will be with the team the rest of the way, with rosters expanding in a month.

Andy MacPhail said that was another motivation for making this trade.

“The primary motivation was to get Josh Bell back up here,” MacPhail told MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli Thursday night.

And now, through two trades of Tejada to the Astros and the Padres over the last several years, the Orioles have brought in:

  • Matt Albers,
  • Troy Patton
  • Luke Scott
  • Dennis Sarfate
  • Michael Costanzo
  • Pelzer.

As of now, Costanzo is the only one of the six not still with the Orioles.

Tejada was deeply discouraged to be leaving this team yet again, but he is happy to be back in a pennant race.

“It’s a good chance at being in the playoffs,” Tejada told the AP before tonight’s game against KC. “And that’s always good.”

And who knows, with Tejada only on a one-year deal at the moment, he could very well be on borrowed time with the Padres, and back with the Orioles a third time next winter.

And Tejada told Ghiroli that idea isn’t out of the possibility.

“I’ll always be interested in coming back here.”

“I love it here. In my heart, I’m one of the Orioles.”

We could be hearing more of these stories the next couple of days with guys maybe like Ty Wigginton, Jeremy Guthrie, Kevin Millwood, Luke Scott, and Will Ohman maybe following Tejada out of Baltimore.

Tune into WNST and WNST.net over the next couple days as we keep track of the Orioles’ attempts at rebuilding-and trying to top the Ravens in the area while doing it. WNST-We Never Stop Talking Baltimore Sports!

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Orioles deal Tejada to San Diego, get a Wynn in return

Posted on 29 July 2010 by Luke Jones

The Orioles may have only two wins since the All-Star Break, but they’ll be getting a Wynn on Thursday night.

Multiple outlets are reporting third baseman Miguel Tejada has been dealt to the San Diego Padres in exchange for minor league pitcher Wynn Pelzer. The 24-year-old is 6-9 with a 4.20 ERA in 22 games for Double-A San Antonio.

Tejada signed a one-year, $6 million deal to return to Baltimore in January but will now compete in a pennant race for the first-place Padres. The 36-year-old hit .269 with seven home runs and 39 RBI in 97 games for the Orioles.

The deal is pending league approval, indicating the Orioles will likely pay a portion of Tejada’s remaining salary to acquire the right-handed Pelzer from the Padres system.

With Tejada being dealt, third baseman Josh Bell will be recalled from Triple-A Norfolk to presumably become the everyday starter at third base. Bell is hitting .263 in 19 at-bats for the Orioles this season in two brief stints in Baltimore.

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 29 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday!

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because the Bowie Baysox are celebrating “The Dude” tonight at Prince George’s Stadium. And I’m sure all other “Big Lebowski” fans are with me in thinking “Who better to celebrate???” (Edit from GMC: Video VERY MUCH NSFW.)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED4VL7W6VdQ[/youtube]

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Terrence Cody passed conditioning test, returned to Ravens practice

Like I said yesterday, “thank God our long civic nightmare is over.”

I’m not particularly worked up about a failed conditioning test. I am a BIT more worked up about the thought that we’ll have to worry about Terrence Cody’s weight/condition for the next few years.

I’m sure there are others (John Harbaugh comes to mind) that are even more concerned about it. Having Haloti Ngata give him a nickname like “Cheeseburger” doesn’t exactly bode well. Of course, it’s not like they didn’t know what they were getting when they picked him in the 2nd round of the NFL Draft. It’s also not like the nickname doesn’t fit.

If I was more of a comedian, I’d have a better “hopefully he’ll be our Cheeseburger in Paradise” Jimmy Buffett-type joke to use here. Instead, I’ll opt to offer a picture of the Boston Blackie Burger from Blackie’s in Chicago-a spot I visited for the first time in my life on the 4th of July. It’s a winner…

blackies

2. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Texas coach Mack Brown believes Sergio Kindle may have fallen due to narcolepsy

Which could VERY WELL be a legitimate reason.

There were reports around the time of the NFL Draft that Kindle may suffer from narcolepsy and ADD, and had fallen asleep during meetings while he was with the Longhorns. We hadn’t necessarily heard that sleepwalking was an issue; but there is certainly at least a CHANCE it’s true.

If so, it’s probably a less concerning explanation than some other potential explanations that had been thrown around. We won’t know what REALLY happened until Sergio Kindle is able to talk to the media-and even then there will be some who will still wonder exactly what happened last week in Austin.

3. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Jared Gaither reported to Training Camp ‘on time’ Wednesday, Terrell Suggs reported ‘slimmer’

I understand that they’re going to say the right thing here; but John Harbaugh said on Monday in the lobby of the Westminster Best Western that he was “looking forward to seeing (Gaither) today.”

Maybe the team didn’t require Gaither to report to Camp early because of his foot injury, but Coach Harbs certainly suggested that he was expecting to see Jared on Monday. Could be a simple miscommunication, could be that the head coach wanted Jared in earlier in the week because he missed OTA’s and is expected to play a different position this year.

The reality is that it doesn’t really matter. Gaither’s in Camp, and as long as he’s on the practice field tomorrow-everything is fine. If he’s still battling the foot problem tomorrow, there will be one more recent drama the team will be dealing with.

You know, because they needed another distraction. Remember when they were having a fairly quiet offseason???

As far as “T-Sizzle” is concerned, it will be interesting to see what he looks like on the practice field as well. As far as defensive improvement is concerned, it is clear that all of it surrounds what type of season Suggs has, especially considering the help that was supposed to come on the pass rush from Sergio Kindle now may well not be there.

4. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Ed Reed spouted off about Baltimore media on Cleveland radio station

I’m finding it hard to find much of anything else to say about Ed Reed right now. He can be as mad as he wants to be at Mike Preston or anyone else in the Baltimore media; but everyone heard his comments-and no one forced a microphone in front of his face in any of his radio interviews; including the first one he did July 2 with us that started this ball rolling.

I’ll leave it alone for now.

The Ravens are off today as they hold an “administrative day” with veterans now in the house. They’ll put the pads on and his the field at McDaniel College for the first full team practice of camp tomorrow morning at 8:45. Luke Jones will keep you updated at the bottom of every hour with Drew Forrester, Thyrl Nelson and Nestor Aparicio.

5. The AP says Brad Mills shut down Orioles in 5-0 win for Blue Jays at Rogers Centre

Remember when Forrester bet me that the Birds would win AND cover 2.5?

I hope lunch is at PF Chang’s.

If I was surprised that a pitcher making his only start before being sent back down to the minors baffled the O’s, I’d tell you. The thing is…I’m not surprised by it at all.

How could I be?

The Orioles are the absolute worst team in baseball, and one of the worst teams in the history of baseball. How could I be surprised by any of this?!?!?

0-12 against Toronto this season. 31-70 for the season. I can’t make these type of numbers up.

6. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

Jeremy Guthrie was actually pretty good last night. It probably won’t make you feel much better, but it happened. I’d like to think that it would improve his value at the Trade Deadline, but I saw what the Arizona Diamondbacks got for Dan Haren. Dan Haren is better than Jeremy Guthrie. The market just isn’t in the Orioles’ favor.

Despite Guthrie, you don’t want to look at the numbers-which include a combined 0-8 with 2 K’s and 5 LOB from Luke Scott and Adam Jones. Instead, look at Cameron Russell from Guyism. We’ll re-group after that…

cameronr

7. MLB.com’s James Hall says Juan Samuel will stick with Bergesen, rest of rotation this time through

Which means you’ll have to wait to see Zach Britton; not that you would have necessarily canceled your Saturday night plans to see him pitch anyway.

Clearly the Birds are hoping their roster decisions will be made for them with the trade deadline. Should they figure out a way to deal Guthrie (or Kevin Millwood), they could bring up Britton (or Chris Tillman) to replace them in the rotation. Should they deal Will Ohman or Mark Hendrickson, they could move Bergesen into the bullpen and move one of the others back into the rotation.

The problem with all of this is that I’m not even sure Andy MacPhail is going to be able to trade ANYONE. Guthrie is the best chip, but this is a year where the pitching market is top-heavy (Cliff Lee and Dan Haren already dealt, Roy Oswalt available); meaning the value for the secondary market is lessened. There have been years where Jeff Suppan and/or Sidney Ponson were the best pitchers available. If this was that type of the year, the market for Guthrie would be better.

The Birds will be lucky to get ANYTHING for Millwood; and the rest of their chips (Ty Wigginton, Miguel Tejada, Julio Lugo, Cesar Izturis, Ohman, Hendrickson) aren’t going to get them much more than a B-level prospect or player to be named at best.

The only real hope they have to get something is Luke Scott, who despite a tough night last night has been hot recently. The Orioles aren’t going to get a lot for him, but they might be able to get SOMETHING-which is more than they could get for much of anyone else.

8. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Josh Bell, Nolan Reimold homered in Norfolk Tides’ win on farm

Before we move on from the on-field Orioles, a couple of things.

-The O’s head to Kansas City to face the Royals tonight; with Brian Matusz going against Kyle Davies. First pitch from Kauffman Stadium is on MASN at 8:10pm. There’s no reason the Orioles couldn’t win this game…but I’ll pick KC. Sean O’Sullivan, Zack Greinke and the great Bruce Chen are scheduled to finish the weekend against Jake Arrieta, Bergesen and Millwood. With a mircale, they’ll split.

-Soren Petro from 810 WHB in Kansas City joined Drew this morning on “The Morning Reaction” to preview the Royals series. If you missed it, make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net to check it out. Other guests included:

  • Jerry Crasnick (ESPN.com)-who discussed the trade deadline, as well as surprising teams in baseball
  • Jason La Canfora (NFL Network)-who discussed Terrell Owens, the AFC North, Dez Bryant and more
  • John Perrotto (Baseball Prospectus)-who went around the world of baseball

It’s all up in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault as well.

9. Fanhouse’s Greg Couch says former O’s 1B Jim Gentile finally credited with winning 1961 RBI title

Which you would know if you heard my “Cheap Shots From The Bleachers” segment this morning on AM1570 WNST. It’s in the Audio Vault if you missed it.

Apparently Lee MacPhail had told Gentile that he would have gotten $5,000 more if he had won the RBI title-which Greg Couch thinks Andy MacPhail should offer to pay him as a kind gesture. I wouldn’t hold my breath.

As a kind gesture from myself to Jim Gentile, I will offer pictures of Daniela Freitas. (Thanks Busted Coverage/Totally Crap!)

freitas

10. UMTerps.com says WR/Specialist Torrey Smith, LB Alex Wujciak named All-ACC

Technically they have THREE all-conference selections, as Torrey Smith was named as both a receiver AND specialist. As I was reminded yesterday-Virginia Tech only had ONE all-conference selection (Ryan Williams), so take that Hokies!

The problem is that beyond these two, this Terrapins team has as many question marks as my Chapel Hill Elementary School 2nd grade English class. Of course, I rarely paid attention in my 2nd grade English class-as I spent more time paying attention to my “girlfriend” Michelle Hensley. Anyone know how she’s doing?

The joke I missed here was that Maryland only had two more wins than Chapel Hill last year. Damn! Sorry everyone…

11. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Maryland to play William & Mary (in football) again in 2012

I remind you that it’s “in football” because it isn’t surprising to see the Tribe come back to Byrd Stadium. Now if Gary Williams were to invite them back to Comcast Center after what happened last year, I’d be absolutely stunned. In fact, I’m a little surprised Gary doesn’t have a “no-fly” zone for W&M over College Park entirely.

Maryland regularly plays one FCS (former 1AA) per year; and they have Morgan State this year, Towson next year, and Rhode Island in 2013. This year’s other non-conference games are Navy, West Virginia and Eastern Michigan; next year’s are Notre Dame, West Virginia and (I believe) Temple.

12. Sports Network’s Craig Haley says Towson picked last in CAA

I stopped by CAA Media Day yesterday, and I have to admit that the oatmeal raisin cookies and potato chips at M&T Bank Stadium were DELICIOUS.

It’s hard to pick Rob Ambrose’s Tigers anything BUT last considering the year they’re coming off and the strength of the CAA; so I doubt they’re particularly disappointed.

As a consolation prize, I offer a photo of Katherine Jenkins. (Thanks Don Chavez!)

kjenkins

And finally, I leave you with this.

I know I already named a “Greatest Song of All Time This Week” this week (“Cornbread” by Dave Matthews Band), but I’m sure there’s been a week where I forgot to name one; so I’m naming another. Hey, it’s my blog. Enjoy “Shutterbug” by Big Boi from Outkast…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWsvkW6rKkQ[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 27 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Tuesday!

It’s a Happy Tuesday for me because somebody decided to make my week yesterday and alter the Perry Hall High School Wikipedia page. As you know, there was an update made yesterday morning to note the significance of the “Apologist of the Year” award won by Steve Melewski…

melewski

But later in the day; someone (and if you’re reading, I can only say “Thank You”) decided to update the PHHS page again to add an additional member to the “Notable Alumni” section…

glenn

You better believe it’s going on my resume.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Glenn Clark says Ravens LB Sergio Kindle will miss Training Camp with fractured skull

I don’t know how much I can add here. Like I said yesterday-this is terrible news to start the season. Not season-defining news necessarily, but terrible news nonetheless.

Before being dismissive of the significance of Kindle’s injury, I would suggest you take a look at the roster from a personnel standpoint. This team gave up over 207 yards per game from a passing defense standpoint last year. That was still worthy of a Top 10 defensive ranking; but it’s a number that needs to improve as this team tries to win the AFC North and reach Dallas to play in the Super Bowl.

Sergio Kindle was (almost certainly) not going to step in here and post double digit sacks the way someone like Shawne Merriman did; but he was going to give them depth at OLB and a speedy, athletic look opposite Terrell Suggs when he was on the field. The team CLEARLY hoped his presence would help improve the pass rush; even if he wasn’t solely responsible for posting big sack numbers.

The Ravens really don’t have much depth at OLB. Suggs and Jarret Johnson are the starters; but other than Kindle-the depth includes Edgar Jones (a converted TE/ILB/FB/Centerfielder?), Paul Kruger (who the team had bulk up in the offseason for a move to DE), and both Antwan Barnes and Prescott Burgess. They could also ask another of their many ILB’s to move outside (Jameel McClain comes to mind); but none would be likely to help the pass rush even at the level Kindle could have.

That’s just reality.

The other thing I’ve heard a lot in the immediacy of the Kindle injury is “well, Paul Kruger didn’t do anything for us last year after HE was a 2nd round pick.”

True, sure. But you have to understand that the Ravens were UNBELIEVABLY disappointed in what they got from Paul Kruger last season. We’ll always remember his interception against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but that was about it from the rookie from Utah last season. The organization has MUCH higher expectations from players selected that high in the NFL Draft.

Man, two straight days we start this thing on such a downer. Good news ahead?

2. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Ravens reported to Westminster ‘built for Super Bowl run’

Despite the reality of the Sergio Kindle situation and the month-long Ed Reed distraction, the Troy Smith drama and Cary Williams’ suspension; the Ravens are STILL opening the season with Super Bowl aspirations, and rightfully so.

I had an interesting Twitter conversation with former Ravens TE Dan Wilcox (you can follow him @83DEGREEZ and us @WNST) a few weeks ago about what it takes to win a Super Bowl. I argued that having the right players made up about 80% of the formula for winning the title; with coaching and chemistry making up the other 20% of the formula. Dan disagreed, arguing that chemistry and mental approach made up MUCH more of the formula than I was giving it credit for.

Clearly this isn’t scientific, but Dan WOULD know a thing or two about being part of a winning team-having reached the AFC Championship Game in his final season just two years ago.

If my formula is right, the Ravens have the athletes to win and should make a real push.

If Dan’s formula is right, well, I’m not so sure.

3. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Ravens agreed to 3 year deal with 2nd round pick Terrence Cody

Go ahead and get all of your jokes out right now…

“I heard the Westminster Chick-Fil-A had to call the National Guard for reserves.”
“Are there enough delivery drivers in Carroll County to keep the big man happy?”

Cody didn’t look to have put on any more weight, but hopefully we’ll find out today (Luke Jones is on the field at McDaniel College as I type) exactly what Cody’s weight is as Camp begins.

And then hopefully moving forward we won’t have to continuously update this.

(Edit from GMC: UPDATE. He failed his conditioning test. Awesome news.)

4. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Ed Reed, Fabian Washington, Lardarius Webb amongst those who will start camp on PUP list

None of that is surprising-it will be more interesting to see who else MIGHT end up on the PUP list while returning from injury.

By the way, a reminder that this ISN’T the “miss the first 6 weeks of the season” PUP list; this is a PUP list for Training Camp-and there are some clerical matters involved. These guys can go on the PUP list now but be removed before Monday Night Football on September 13.

I’m REALLY hoping that the team DOESN’T put Sofia Vergara on the PUP list. That would be criminal (Thanks Guyism!)…

vergara

5. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says John Harbaugh plans to ‘work out’ issues with Ed Reed

And before we move on from the Ravens, a couple of things:

-If you missed Drew Forrester’s chat with veteran NFL agent Ralph Cindrich this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST-it was really interesting. They discussed Sergio Kindle, his former client Troy Smith and the agent issues currently surrounding USC and NCAA Football in general. The conversation is in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault at WNST.net if you want to check it out. Ravens rookie WR David Reed joined Thyrl Nelson on “The Mobtown Sports Beat”, you can check that out as well.

-The Ravens are back on the practice field today; with an afternoon practice at 3:30pm. John Harbaugh, Cam Cameron and Joe Flacco are all scheduled to meet with the media following practice this morning-we’ll have it all in the Audio Vault, and you can hear all of it throughout the day with Thyrl Nelson and Nestor Aparicio on AM1570 WNST.

6. The AP says Wieters had first career multi-HR game, but Orioles dropped series opener to Blue Jays in Toronto

In fairness, the Birds played REALLY well…after they were down 8-0.

A rough outing for Brad Bergesen, who I guess thought Chris Tillman’s demotion last week meant he had nothing to worry about moving forward. Ugh.

Jose Bautista hit his Major League Baseball-leading 28th home run of the year last night. I know Matt Garza threw the 5th no-hitter of the season last night, but are we sure guys stopped using steroids?

At first blush, I couldn’t believe that was Matt Wieters’ first multi-homer game of his career. When I thought about it more, it made plenty of sense.

Are the Matt Wieters Facts not funny anymore? I’ve had so much taken from me as an O’s fan, I can’t stomach the idea of losing this as well!

7. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

By the way, I have NO IDEA why Juan Samuel brought Brad Bergesen back out to start the 6th inning last night. At first blush, I thought it was shameful. When Samuel pulled him a batter later, I DEFINITELY thought it was shameful.

But as always, you REALLY don’t want to look at the numbers from last night. Instead, look at Adrianne Curry dressed as Princess Leia at Comic-Con in San Diego (Thanks Don Chavez!). We’ll regroup after that…

leia

8. MLB.com’s James Hall says Wigginton’s suspension reduced to two games

Which forced the O’s to play Jake Fox at first last night and have just Julio Lugo and Corey Patterson on the bench.

I’d be concerned, but what does it really matter?

No word on whether or not the O’s are considering a roster move to get another player on the bench tonight; but it might be a good idea. Just a thought-but a backup catcher (Craig Tatum comes to mind) could be helpful.

9. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Josh Bell went 0-7 in Norfolk Tides’ loss on farm

Before we move on from the Orioles, a couple of things…

-The Birds are back in action tonight; facing the Jays at Rogers Centre. First pitch between Kevin Millwood and Ricky Romero is at 7:07pm, the game can be seen on MASN. I don’t like the Birds’ chances against Romero. They don’t do well against lefties. Or anyone.

-Congratulations to Luke Scott for being named the American League Player of the Month. Hopefully that will impress the New York Mets. Or Detroit Tigers. Or San Diego Padres. Or anyone…

-If you missed former Orioles Executive and current SiriusXM MLB Network Radio analyst Jim Duquette with Drew Forrester this morning, make sure you hit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to check it out. Delmarva Shorebirds field coach/former O’s CF/my personal hero Mike Devereaux was also on the show, as well as former Maryland lacrosse coach and current Chesapeake Bayhawks consultant Dave Cottle. It’s all in the Audio Vault.

10. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Ralph Friedgen confirmed Jamarr Robinson will start under center for Terrapins

Which we basically knew; but this just settles anyone who thought the job could be available for Danny O’Brien or C.J. Brown to win this summer in College Park.

If Kimberly Phillips shows up in camp however-I’d let her win whatever job she wanted (Thanks The Smoking Jacket!)…

kimberly

11. ACC Official Site says Terps picked to finish last in Atlantic Division by media assembled in Greensboro

Ehh…2nd…4th…6th…doesn’t matter to me. It’s like Ricky Bobby says…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_isgXzxIa24[/youtube]

And finally, I leave you with this.

Did Kings of Leon really cancel a show in St. Louis when there was an…umm…seagull incident?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=siIQmp4KUoE[/youtube]

I’d be more concerned if they weren’t the band that did “Be Somebody.” That earns them something…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F7dQTqBGASU[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 22 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday!

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because after a one day hiccup yesterday (thanks to our buddy Dan Dinkin at Cobalt Consulting for getting us back up and running); I’m back at it today. It’s ALSO a Happy Thursday for me because my pal Barry Aparicio grabbed me this tasty adult beverage during his trip to New York…

brooklyn

Nicely done Barry.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Rafael Soriano came through as Rays held on to beat Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

I’ll be forced to admit that I watched absolutely NONE of the game yesterday.

Sorry.

I was out looking at potential new places to live yesterday, and the O’s game just wasn’t destination viewing for me. Or just about anyone else for that matter.

I remember there was a time back when Nestor Aparicio was on in the afternoons that if the Orioles were playing, he’d be off the air knowing no one would be listening. Now if the Orioles are on in the afternoon, we don’t really even think about it in terms of programming. In fact, I’d imagine there might be MORE folks listening as they’re trying to find an alternative to garbage.

The Birds did rally from down 4 runs again; they just couldn’t hold off Tampa Bay after that. Keeping it close yesterday actually might well have been enough to get a “bravo” from myself and others.

Of course, if I didn’t care enough to even bother to watch-it’s hard for me to consider caring enough to offer praise to losers.

2. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

Brad Bergesen survived the need to drop a starter (he should have thanked Chris Tillman on his way down), then turned around and gave up 5 earned runs on 9 hits and 3 walks over 5 and a third innings.

Don’t look at it. Just don’t. It will REALLY only cause you headaches. Instead, look at this picture of Carla Ossa. She’s a swimwear model from Columbia; which seems like a nice place. Report back after viewing. (Thanks NextRound.net!)

ossa

3. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Mike Gonzalez back, Josh Bell sent down, Kevin Millwood activated, Troy Patton promoted and demoted

I wonder if they even bothered giving Troy Patton a locker yesterday…

The roster flux isn’t over yet. Brian Roberts is set to return before the end of the week, and Matt Wieters should be just after that. Someone’s going to have to go, and there don’t appear to be trades on the immediate horizon.

A lot of folks believe Matt Albers will be one to go. Scott Moore could be another. Or maybe Jeremy Guthrie COULD end up being dealt. Someone is going to have to go, and it’s hard for me to imagine anyone being missed too terribly much.

Yeah, it’s one of those mornings when it comes to the Orioles. I just don’t have much positive to say. They’re 30-64. What the hell positive IS there to say?

Maybe I should say “Thank God for the Pittsburgh Pirates.” If it weren’t for them, there wouldn’t even be a RACE for the worst record in Major League Baseball. The Bucks are currently 4 games in front of the Birds-not that they’re in a rush to pick up too many more W’s.

4. Orioles Hangout’s Tony Pente says “actions speak louder than words” with Andy MacPhail

This is a great read.

Tony received the “Former Apologist of the Morning” award today from “The Great Arbitrator” Drew Forrester. Tony really did a great job of breaking down the MacPhail era; and the fact that MacPhail really does care as much (if not more) about his bottom line than he does about wins and losses.

Of course, I feel like I’ve heard this point before. Somewhere on the AM dial I think. Or on a website…maybe the website you’re on currently.

Maybe.

5. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Armando Gabino strong, Michael Aubrey crushed grand slam for Norfolk Tides on farm

Before we move on from the Birds, a few things (mostly because we have to)…

-The Orioles are back in action tonight; as they open a 4 game set with the Minnesota Twins at OPACY. First pitch between Carl Pavano and Kevin Millwood is at 7:05pm and the game can be seen on MASN if you’re interested. Ron Gardenhire may or may not be with the Twinkies for tonight’s game; he missed Wednesday’s series finale with the Cleveland Indians as he dealt with a personal matter.

-Did you miss Delmarva Shorebirds manager Ryan Minor with Drew Forrester today on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out. Also up in the Audio Vault are our chats with USA Today’s Jarrett Bell about Joe Flacco & the Ravens, FoxSports.com/CollegeFootballNews.com’s Pete Fiutak about Reggie Bush & USC; and our morning “Cheap Shots from the Bleachers.”

-Juan Samuel is still the interim manager, and Buck Showalter is still unemployed. I’m not trying to say that either thing should or should not be the case; I’m just letting you know that it IS still the case. That’s all.

6. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Ravens QB Troy Smith ‘a fan of’ new teammate Marc Bulger

Which is the right thing for Troy to say, clearly. That’s sort of refreshing, because Troy Smith hasn’t exactly made a career of saying the right things. Maybe going through an offseason of not being wanted by any NFL team-including the hometown team you grew up with (Cleveland Browns) and needed a QB might be a humbling experience.

Maybe.

A number of players on the team appear to be a bit less than ‘thrilled’ about the addition of Bulger. Joe Flacco was the first to speak up about it, followed by Ed Reed this week. It’s clear that the players on this team felt as though the backup QB position WASN’T a position the team needed to upgrade.

I’ve stated before that I think Marc Bulger is probably a BETTER quarterback than Troy Smith; but I was “unmoved” by the addition. I didn’t feel like this was a place where the team needed an upgrade-and that Bulger wouldn’t make a difference in whether or not the team could win a Super Bowl should Flacco get hurt.

It’s clear I’m not the only one who felt that way.

7. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says Ed Reed wants more ‘support’ from Ravens

Which all kinda dates back to when he initially suffered the neck/back injuries that now haunt him in his career. Ed very clearly wants a new contract (which he first told us in an interview on July 2nd); and the Ravens very clearly won’t give him one.

Ed’s said a lot of stuff this week to just about anyone who would listen. I’ll be forced to admit that I’m unmoved by most of it. I’m really getting to the point where I’m a bit surprised Ed hasn’t just gone ahead and retired. He’s not overly passionate about the game itself, and he IS genuinely risking his health to play.

More “support” from the Ravens, huh? Well…there’s plenty of things I want myself if we’re talking about it. For example, I want Busted Coverage to link to more pictures of Alyssa Sutherland…

alyssa

8. WNST.net’s Ryan Chell says Eric DeCosta thinks Ravens ‘in a position to win’

Anyone gonna argue with him? I know I’m not.

DeCosta’s appearance was with our own Rex Snider over the last weekend, as part of our “Curing Cancer One Call At A Time” marathon to raise money for the Cancer Center at Harbor Hospital. If you missed it, it’s in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net.

And if you haven’t donated to the cause yet; please make sure you click on the “Events” tab here at the top of the page and PLEASE DO SO.

9. Fox Sports’ Adam Caplan says Ravens cut C Digger Bujnoch

And as I said via Twitter this morning (follow us @WNST), that would mark the first time a lot of folks have known that there is a player named Digger Bujnoch was with the Ravens.

I would assume Digger Bujnoch is probably plenty disappointed today; but I think he should probably cheer up. Now that he doesn’t have football to worry about, he’ll have PLENTY of time to look at pictures of Jessica Hart and Ashley Hart (Thanks Guyism!)

harts

10. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Navy to visit Penn State in 2012

I’m a BIT surprised that Navy would take a one-off game in Happy Valley without getting some sort of return (clearly not in Annapolis-but maybe at M&T Bank Stadium or even in Washington).

This has sorta been the biggest block to getting the Nittany Lions back on Maryland’s schedule; as the folks in State College have been more than willing to offer a game at Beaver Stadium, but haven’t been willing to commit to a game in College Park.

Navy got a return from Ohio State (I believe the location of the return is still undetermined), which makes me wonder why they couldn’t get a return from PSU. Maybe it’s something that could still be negotiated in the future, or maybe the Lions just feel like they don’t need the recruiting help in this area and drew a hard line.

The schedule will be particularly tough for the Midshipmen to open the 2012 season; as the Sept. 15 date at Penn State will be just 2 weeks after a season opening trip to Dublin, Ireland to face Notre Dame.

Does Roger Staubach have any availability left?

And finally, I leave you with this.

Don’t bother me at 10am Saturday.

I’ll be busy trying to track down tickets to the annual (free) Virgin Mobile Fest. T.I., Ludacris, Temper Trap, and the GREAT Jimmy Eat World?!?!?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmCka47FIWU[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Orioles roster moves: Gonzalez back, Patton promoted (and demoted)

Posted on 21 July 2010 by Luke Jones

With the bullpen completely spent after extensive work in the last three games, the Orioles needed immediate relief help.

The Orioles announced a series of roster moves prior to Wednesday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays. Lefty reliever Mike Gonzalez has been reinstated from the 60-day disabled list, left-handed pitcher Troy Patton has been recalled from Triple-A Norfolk, and third baseman Josh Bell has been optioned to the Tides. To make room for Gonzalez on the 40-man roster, Jim Johnson has been moved from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list.

Gonzalez was placed on the disabled list on April 10 with a strained left shoulder. At the time of his injury, Gonzalez had recorded one save in three appearances, much to fans’ chagrin.

Patton was 6-9 with a 4.91 ERA in 18 starts for Norfolk this season. He posted a 3.44 ERA over his last nine outings for Norfolk. This will be Patton’s first stint in the big leagues since 2007. Patton’s stay with the Orioles could be brief, as Kevin Millwood is expected to return from the disabled list to make the start on Thursday night. Patton will wear uniform No. 54.

Bell batted .263 (6-19) in six games for the Orioles and had been rotting away on the bench in his latest stint with Baltimore.

Johnson has been on the disabled list since May 28 with right elbow inflammation. He was 1-1 with one save and a 6.52 ERA in 10 games for the Orioles.

UPDATE: As expected, the Orioles optioned Patton back to Norfolk following Wednesday’s 5-4 loss to the Rays. Kevin Millwood will be activated Thursday to make the start in the first of a four-game set against the Minnesota Twins.

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