Tag Archive | "Kevin Millwood"

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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Orioles option Tillman to Norfolk

Posted on 20 July 2010 by Luke Jones

Chris Tillman is heading to the minors—again.

After being hammered for eight runs in 2 2/3 innings in Monday night’s loss to the Tampa Bay Rays, the 22-year-old has been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk.

Tillman is 1-4 with a 7.92 ERA (25.0 IP, 22 ER) in six starts with the Orioles this season. He made two starts after being promoted for the second time this season on July 10, going 1-1 with a 7.20 ERA (10.0 IP, 8 ER), including a victory in which he pitched a career-high 7 1/3 innings on July 10 against the Texas Rangers.

A corresponding roster move will be announced prior to tomorrow’s game against Tampa Bay. The most likely candidates are veteran starting pitcher Kevin Millwood (on the 15-day DL) or reliever Mike Gonzalez (60-day DL). It was announced earlier Tuesday that Millwood would make his returning start on Thursday night.

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 20 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Tuesday!

It’s a Happy Tuesday for me because after checking out a BUNCH of work at Artscape Sunday; I think I’ve decided what I’m going to purchase. I Twitpic-ed some of these the other day.

Apparently Robert McClintock is originally from Wilmington, Vermont. Somehow he might be even more Charm City than any of the rest of us. I’ll be purchasing BOTH his American Visionary Art Museum and Brewers Hill prints…

avam

brewershill

And I don’t know too much about Robert Florio, but I know I’ll be picking this piece up from his last game…

ripken

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Wade Davis cruised as Rays topped Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

Once again, I find myself saying “at least they didn’t bother wasting too much energy in this one.”

Of course, they could have had the decency to get it over quickly-instead of forcing the handful of folks who bought tickets to stick around awhile.

Chris Tillman nearly no-hit the Texas Rangers before the All-Star Game. What a weird weekend that was in Arlington. I’m surprised they didn’t have an earthquake in The Lone Star State themselves instead of it happening in Germantown.

Miguel Tejada and Adam Jones combined to go 0-8 and left a combined 7 men on base. You could have checked the box score (coming up next) to get that info, but we all know I’m going to re-direct you to an attractive gal instead.

Matt Albers and Cesar Izturis were kinda okay last night. So we’ve got that going for us. Which is nice…

Is this the part where we stop praising Juan Samuel for the fact that the players looked like they were playing harder for him? Or do we keep going with that?

Hell, is anyone even paying attention at this point?

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

Scott Moore scored the Orioles’ lone run last night if you’re intersted. I don’t think you are, but I guess you never know.

Obviously you don’t want to look at this.

Instead, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley snapped some new photos for Victoria’s Secret before she appears in Transformers 3. Go look at those. We’ll talk after. (Thanks Guyism!)

rhw

3. Carroll County Times’ Josh Land says Luke Scott called back up, Frank Mata sent back down

I can’t believe SportsCenter lead with something else!!!

The O’s roster will be in flux for the next couple of weeks, with plenty of decisions to be made. Following Scott; the Birds expect to get Mike Gonzalez, Brian Roberts, Kevin Millwood and Matt Wieters back in the semi-near future; and Jim Johnson could return just after that.

Josh Bell figures to be a roster casualty at some point; but others on the team will either have to be traded or released to make room for everyone. There’s a few guys on the team I might even be willing to consider pitching in and helping them pack their bags.

Speaking of guys who might be traded…

4. SNY’s Matthew Cerrone says New York Mets checked out Jeremy Guthrie

Which was first reported via Twitter by Fanhouse’s Ed Price. I usually try to stick to reporting things like “they’ve got really good paella at Artscape” on Twitter myself (you can follow us @WNST).

Earlier this season, the Orioles gifted the Mets INF Justin Turner-but I doubt they’d be willing to do with Guthrie. I’ve heard Ruben Tejeda’s name thrown around in trade rumors thus far by a few folks. Tejeda is hitting .212 this season with 4 doubles and no home runs. Don’t we already have him on the roster?!?!?

If I’m Andy MacPhail, I’m more than willing to consider any trade offer for Jeremy Guthrie at this point. I’m just also reasonable in my understanding that I’m not fleecing ANY team in MLB for Guthrie.

Unless of course it’s Woody Guthrie; as the ability to trade a man who died 43 years ago would probably be enough to get an impressive trade return. Plus…I mean…he did “This Land Is Your Land”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wxiMrvDbq3s[/youtube]

5. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Brian Roberts 2-5 with a double in first rehab start for Bowie Baysox on farm

And before we move on from the Orioles, a few things worth pointing out…

-The Birds are back in action tonight against the Tampa Bay Rays; as Jake Arrieta faces Matt Garza at OPACY. First pitch on MASN2 is at 7:05pm. Matt Garza looks a lot like Greg Maddux every time he faces the Orioles, so I don’t have too much hope.

-Michelle Obama is going to throw out the first pitch tonight. The Orioles have sent out a bunch of security notes about getting to the stadium early. Do they think people are actually going tonight? I know it’s Jason Berken t-shirt night, but I’m pretty sure that even with heightened security there won’t be too much trouble getting into the stadium.

-If you missed Rays PBP voice Andy Freed (a Towson native) this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST; make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today here at WNST.net to check it out. Also on the show this morning, we took a look around Major League Baseball with Newsday’s Ken Davidoff; and we were joined in-studio by Fearon Wright of the undefeated Baltimore Mariners-as they prepare for the AIFA Championship Bowl Sunday at 4pm against the Wyoming Cavalry at 1st Mariner Arena. They’re both in the Audio Vault as well.

Fearon was smart to turn around his Yankees hat before posing…

fearon

6. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says Ken Hamlin to wear #45, Marc Bulger #9, Walt Harris #38

…at least for Training Camp.

Marc Bulger wore #10 with the St. Louis Rams; but Troy Smith will be wearing that number at McDaniel College. I’m not saying Bulger will be “stalking” the number; but like The Miz told Sheamus last night on WWE Raw (Edit from GMC: Yeah, I watched…and it was actually pretty good last night); “Every beath you take, every move you make, I’ll be watching you.”

Bulger knows that Troy Smith could be dealt or released before the Monday Night Football opener at The Meadowlands; which would allow him to re-take the Number 10 from the former Heisman Trophy winner.

On the flip side, I don’t think there’s a scenario where Ken Hamlin gets his number back from Dawan Landry. Unless maybe he has a spare DeLorean lying around to offer in exchange…

DeLorean

(Edit from GMC: There was a DeLorean at Artscape. Had Doc Brown showed up and asked me to roll out with him, I would have been GONE…)

7. USA Today’s Jarrett Bell says Joe Flacco becoming ‘leader’ of Ravens team with Super Bowl aspirations

A lot of folks were worked up by the comments Joe made about Marc Bulger after his autograph signing this weekend. I wasn’t.

One of the reasons I said I WASN’T over the moon about the Ravens acquiring Bulger was because I didn’t think it was the right thing to do for the team’s chemistry and establishing Flacco as “the guy.” Most NFL players would probably tell you that salary isn’t relevant; but in this case-I don’t think it is EVER okay for a team’s backup QB to be making more money than the team’s established, unquestioned starter.

I know for certain that Joe Flacco, Troy Smith and John Beck had a VERY good working relationship. Does that mean Marc Bulger can’t step in and also be part of that? Not necessarily, but it isn’t a guarantee he will be either. He said the right things in his conference call last week, but this is still a guy who has been a Pro Bowl QB during his career and will bring a ton of pride with him to Owings Mills.

I think things will be fine. As I’ve said before, they’ll be especially fine if Marc Bulger never takes a regular season snap in purple and black. Had Kyle Boller been so fortunate, he’d have been remembered in a much better light in town.

8. The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Antwaan Randle El considered signing with Ravens before signing with Steelers

In a related story, before I ever got together with “The Luckiest Dang Gal on the Face of the Planet”, I considered dating Behati Prinsloo (Thanks Totally Crap/Busted Coverage!)…

behati

Oh, and Antwaan Randle El-you’ve played for the Washington Redskins and Pittsburgh Steelers in your career. I’m glad you didn’t come to Baltimore. It would have been more difficult to root for you than it is to root for the Orioles.

9. WNST.net’s Ryan Chell says Kurt Warner expects Anquan Boldin to “bring an amazing leadership, competitiveness, and toughness to the football field” with Ravens

If you missed Rex Snider’s TREMENDOUS chat with the future Hall of Fame QB Saturday night during WNST’s “Curing Cancer One Call At A Time” marathon to raise money for the Cancer Center at Harbor Hospital; make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out.

I’ve spent the better part of the 2 years since I moved back to Baltimore from Phoenix extolling the virtues of Boldin; who has absolutely TREMENDOUS for the Arizona Cardinals during his career. If you didn’t listen to me, I’d hope you would listen to Kurt Warner. I know I always did.

There are a slew of other interviews from the marathon this weekend in the Audio Vault; including Ravens LB’s Dannell Ellerbe, Tavares Gooden and Jameel McClain; Ravens exec Eric DeCosta, as well as Olympic figure skater Kimmie Meissner, ESPN’s Tim Kurkjian, former tennis star Zina Garrison, former Terps guard John Lucas and former Governor of the Old Line State-the great Robert Ehrlich. All of those interviews (and more) are also available in the Audio Vault.

10. The Daily Record’s Liz Farmer says ticket sales slow for Inter Milan-Manchester City match at M&T Bank Stadium

This is BAD news. I knew ticket sales were slow; but having only around 30,000 tickets sold at this point is really dreadful.

It would be okay for there to be empty seats in the upper deck when this game happens next weekend; but to have the majority of the stadium empty would reflect poorly on the city’s hopes to get World Cup matches as part of the USA bid for 2022 (or 2018).

I sat in a mostly empty RFK Stadium to see Team USA face Costa Rica in a World Cup qualifier last fall. I’m well aware that not every soccer match in every city is going to be sold out-but some cities have a better soccer pedigree to fall back on. DC is one of them. Baltimore is not at this point. We need to build the evidence that we are. The atmosphere for Chelsea-AC Milan last year started that, but there needs to be more.

An empty stadium to see the UEFA Champions League winner face another major European power will not be compelling evidence that the city is ready for the biggest sporting event in the world. Hopefully there will be an uptick in the next 10 days, but I have a bad feeling here.

11. Washington Post’s Mark Giannotto says former Terrapins DL Dean Muhtadi has chance to make Arizona Cardinals roster

This is a great read about how Muhtadi was given a chance to work with Cards DL Darnell Dockett, Minnesota Vikings TE (and former Morgan State Bears star) Visanthe Shiancoe and former Philadelphia Eagles RB Brian Westbrook this offseason thanks to a recommendation from Cardinals strength coach John Lott. It looks it could pay off in Muhtadi getting a real look at making the roster when the team reports to Flagstaff for Training Camp later this month.

I’d really encourage you to read this story today. In fact, if I could encourage you to do any two things today, it would be to 1-read this story; then 2-figure out ways for me to get Caitlin Hixx’s attention (Thanks NextRound.net!)…

chixx

12. The Sun’s Jeff Barker says Jeff Hathaway’s selection as NCAA basketball chair for ’11-’12 clouds his candidacy to replace Debbie Yow in College Park

Folks whose opinions I value seem to split on exactly what this means as far as Hathaway’s likelihood for staying at UConn. Should he leave UConn, he’d have to give up his spot-which is considered one of the most prestigous gigs for an Athletic Director to get. Should he stick in Connecticut; he’d likely have to wade his way through sanctions (and considering what happened at USC they could well be major) surrounding Jim Calhoun and the Huskies’ basketball program.

It’s certainly a 50-50.

We discuss potential sanctions for a bunch of schools (including North Carolina and Florida) during this week’s D1scast, which is available now in the Audio Vault. A quick plug for my buddy Patrick Stevens-whose site is now JUST D1scourse.com; having got rid of that pesky “Typepad” that made introducing him quite the mouthful.

And finally, I leave you with this.

This week’s “Greatest Song of All Time This Week” is a bit off the map. I hadn’t heard of Chiddy Bang before this weekend; but apparently they blew up thanks to “Rob Dyrdek’s Fantasy Factory”, a show I will admit to enjoying the time or two I’ve still poked over to MTV. The song is a cover/sample/interpretation(?) of MGMT’s “Kids”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5151GwT-DSI[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 07 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because the Netherlands beat Uruguay and advanced to Sunday’s World Cup Final. This means Rafael Van Der Vaart gets to play another significant game in South Africa.

Why is that good news? Well…apparently you don’t know that Rafael Van Der Vaart is married to Sylvie Van Der Vaart…

vandervaart

Like I said, this is good news.

Of course, had Uruguay won-we would have been talking more about Diego Forlan-WAG Zaira Nara, and there wouldn’t have been anything bad about that either…

zairanara

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP says Johnny Damon crushed walk-off homer to lift Tigers past Orioles in Detroit

Look, let’s go ahead and get this out of the way. I WAS named “Apologist of the Morning” by “The Great Arbitrator” Drew Forrester. I said it last night on Twitter (follow us @WNST), and I’ll stick by it…

Here’s where I’ll be fair. Sometimes the other team tries too.”

I should have prefaced that. I should have said that if the Orioles were a good team, they’d earn the benefit of the doubt that sometimes the other team tries too.

I didn’t feel as though the Orioles didn’t try last night, or as if anything in particular was a glaring reason for why they LOST the game. I really DID feel as though the Tigers were just much better.

Of course, I should be fair. They AREN’T any good. This is what happens when you aren’t any good. Even when you play well (Jake Arrieta pitched well, the Orioles added runs in the 8th and 9th inning, etc), the teams you play against can figure out ways to beat you.

Maybe another Tweet I sent out last night was more fitting for this team…

“Well, the Orioles managed to find a way to lose again. Just like a season long kick in the nuts…

It really is.

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

Matt Wieters had both a double and a triple in last night’s game. Rumor has it that afterwards he IMMEDIATELY needed an IV.

Credit Arrieta for pitching well…6 and 1/3 innings, 1 earned run, 7 hits, 4 strikeouts, 2 walks. Hopefully he won’t give up hope. I’m not exactly sure how he couldn’t, but I hope he won’t.

You know what, you REALLY don’t want to look at the numbers. Instead, look at this video that SecretSauce.TV put together called “Twilight for Guys.”

(Editor’s Note: Warning. This video involves girls in their underwear making out with each other. Or in other words, don’t watch mom.)

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

3. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Felix Pie activated, Kevin Millwood sent to DL

And Felix Pie had two hits last night. Although he couldn’t move Matt Wieters (trust me, I think it was terrible baserunning from Wieters too) to 3rd base-or score him-in a key situation; but I’ll leave that alone.

By the way, he didn’t win AOTM-but I wanted to address something Peter Schmuck wrote. Schmuck wrote…

“For his trouble, he waited 21/2 months for enough offensive support to earn his first victory of the year and now appears to be wilting under the weight of this discouraging season.

How else could you explain his performance Monday in Detroit, where he lasted just one inning, threw 45 pitches and allowed five runs? It was the third-shortest outing of his 14-year career and the sixth time in his past eight starts that he gave up at least five runs.

I understand that Millwood did a decent job to start the season, but are we really surprised that he’s struggling???

Kevin Millwood is a solid MLB pitcher who was poorly cast by Andy MacPhail as a front of the rotation starter on a bad team. He’s a good pitcher, but he’s a good pitcher who should be the 3rd or 4th starter on a good team.

He’s a pitcher who was 48-46 over his last 4 seasons (all with the Texas Rangers) before being traded to Baltimore. He averaged a 4.67 ERA over those 4 seasons as well.

He was GOING TO STRUGGLE this season. He isn’t Roy Halladay. He isn’t Felix Hernandez. He isn’t Andy Pettitte! He’s a veteran starter who has been good in his career; but has struggled at times.

It’s frustrating because it almost eliminates his trade value as we approach the July 31 deadline; but it isn’t surprising. It’s what happens when a team acquires “a guy” instead of “the guy.”

We know all too much about that here in Charm City.

4. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says Garrett Atkins officially released by Birds

Now here’s the part where we all sit around and think about our memories of Garrett Atkins…

-There was the time he hit his home run
-There was the time he went to London and brought Aldous Snow back to the Greek Theater
-There was the time he blew up that BP oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico
-There was the time he blew the call on Maurice Edu’s goal in the Team USA-Slovenia match
-There was the time he announced Mary Kane as his running mate in his campaign to replace Martin O’Malley as governor of Maryland

I’m not sure why everyone was down on him, it was a hell of a run.

(Edit from GMC: Apparently only the 1 home run was true amongst the things on that list. I could have sworn…)

5. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Zach Britton, Ryohei Tanaka struggled for O’s on farm

Before we move on, a couple of things…

-The Birds are back in action tonight as they try to avoid the sweep at Comerica Park. First pitch between Brad Bergesen and Max Scherzer is at 7:05pm on MASN. My guess? The Tigers will finish the sweep. But I always assume the other team will win.

-Did you miss Bowie Baysox pitcher and Orioles prospect Steve Johnson on “The Morning Reaction” this morning on AM1570 WNST? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net today to check it out. We also had ESPN analyst and former Rangers/Cubs/etc OF Doug Glanville (author of the new book “The Game From Where I Stand”) and former Terrapins/Blast star Desmond Armstrong to talk World Cup on the show this morning-make sure you check them out as well.

6. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Ed Reed likely to be out until October

This wouldn’t surprise me necessarily. I know that Ed is wanting to get back on the field; but I wouldn’t exactly be stunned if he missed Training Camp. Should he miss Training Camp, there would be a major question as to whether or not he should be PUP’ed.

There are some simple facts here. 1-While Ken Hamlin and Tom Zbikowski give the Ravens depth at safety, neither are Ed Reed. 2-There are CLEARLY other issues involved in this, with Ed bringing up his contract multiple times during an interview on “The Morning Reaction” last Friday.

I’ll guess that Reed’s situation will be the story we’re most interested in while we’re in Westminster. In fact, I hope it is. A Joe Flacco injury would be a more interesting story. I’m not looking for something like that.

7. BaltimoreRavens.com’s John Eisenberg says costly moves show Ravens commmitted to making run towards Super Bowl

I would counter with the same thing I’ve said a hundred times before. The moment the Ravens traded for Anquan Boldin, they showed me they were intent on getting to Dallas and hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy. I’m not worked up about the additions of Marc Bulger, Ken Hamlin or Walt Harris. Any NFL team could make those types of moves.

Acquiring Anquan Boldin? That’s a Super Bowl-type move.

By the way, John Eisenberg will join Rex Snider this afternoon on AM1570 WNST at 3:30pm.

8. NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks says Ravens offense now in ‘spotlight’ thanks to offseason moves

This is very similar to what I told Mike Florio in his ProFootballTalk.com/NBC Sports season preview magazine. There is a shift here. Joe Flacco, Ray Rice and Michael Oher are the nucleus of a unit that should make the Ravens winners for years to come.

They’ve added pieces like Matt Birk and Anquan Boldin to that. They’ve kept pieces like Derrick Mason and Todd Heap with that.

And they’ve done it without sacrificing much of anything defensively.

There’s a reason why they’re considered a “Rolls Royce” of professional organizations.

By the way, I’d like to put something in the “spotlight” myself. Something named Rhian Sugden. (Thanks Guyism!)

rhian

9. Inside Lacrosse’s Sean Burns says former Terps coach Dave Cottle removes name from consideration for Harvard lacrosse job

I said from the jump that I wasn’t sold on this being a good fit for Dave Cottle. He really has no background in the northeast, and having to get kids to an Ivy League school isn’t as easy as the success Princeton has had would make you think it was.

The Penn State job would have been a great gig for Cottle-but the Nittany Lions found their man. Instead, he’s probably better suited sitting it out and seeing what might open up in the next year or two. He’s MUCH better off in the Mid-Atlantic. Had Towson parted ways with Tony Seaman (which they rightly didn’t), that might have been a good fit.

10. UMTerps.com says Comcast Center to host Women’s NCAA Tournament games on Sunday, March 20 & Tuesday, March 22 2011

I’ve attended Women’s Tournament games in College Park, and they do an outstanding job of hosting the event. Hopefully, Brenda Freses’s team won’t be on the outside looking in during March Madness this year.

Question: Is there any chance Laura Leigh Siani could be part of the Tournament??? (Thanks Brosome/Busted Coverage!)

siani

And finally, I leave you with this.

Is it even safe for the Orioles to go to the Ballpark in Arlington this weekend??? Not only are fans falling from the upper deck (I’m not even going to bother re-posting that video), but even fans in the outfield are pinning kids against fences to try to steal cheap souvenirs…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7_C92Q3uIQ[/youtube]

Heat does crazy things to people…

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Orioles place Millwood on DL, activate Pie

Posted on 06 July 2010 by Luke Jones

As speculated after his miserable outing on Monday, starting pitcher Kevin Millwood has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right forearm (flexor mass).

Millwood is 2-8 with a 5.77 ERA (107.2 IP, 69 ER) in a team-high 18 starts for the Orioles.

The move will surely cloud his future as the Orioles were expecting to shop Millwood at the July 31st trading deadline

To fill Millwood’s spot on the roster, the Orioles have activated outfielder Felix Pie, who has been on the disabled list since April 16 with a strained upper back muscle.

Pie was batting .400 (8-20) with two doubles, a home run and one RBI for the Orioles at the time of his injury. By activating Pie from the 60-day disabled list, the Orioles’ 40-man roster is at capacity.

The left-handed outfielder is scheduled to play left field and bat seventh in the lineup against Detroit on Tuesday night.

With Millwood going to the DL, third baseman Josh Bell and reliever Frank Mata appear safe for now, though the Orioles will need a starting pitcher for Saturday night.

If you’re on the WNST Text Service, you received the Kevin Millwood news first! Be sure to join the service to receive breaking news before everyone else. We Never Stop Texting Baltimore Sports!

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 06 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Tuesday!

It’s a Happy Tuesday for me because I’m still basking in a 4th of July weekend trip to Chicago. If you missed any of my very important updates via Twitter/Twitpic (follow us @WNST), here are the most significant highlights…

I was in the Philadelphia airport Saturday morning preparing to fly when I wandered into the closest “Hudson News” stand I could find. I picked up the ProFootballTalk.com/NBC Sports NFL season preview, and flipped to the Baltimore Ravens section to see what I would find. I was a BIT surprised…

pft

I forwarded that picture to my parents…but I’m not sure they were impressed. In fact, I think the response was “when are you going to get a real job?”

When I finally got settled in the Windy City Saturday afternoon; our first stop was an early dinner at Lou Malnati’s. I was a little confused as to why we needed to get to dinner no later than 5pm…right up until I saw maybe 100 folks waiting in line for deep dish pizza after we had been there for a few minutes. We ordered a Chicago-Style Classic and a 312 Brew from Goose Island Brewing Company. I wasn’t disappointed in either…not even a little bit.

malnatis

We then hit the Hancock Tower. Apparently the Sears Tower is bigger, but their observatory isn’t as far up as the one at the Hancock. I have no comment, as math was never something I was particularly good at. What I do know is that this view was pretty freaking cool…

chicago

Saturday night was a stop at the Second City comedy club. If you’re not familiar, this is the improv factory that produced the likes of Chris Farley, John Belushi, John Candy, Gilda Radner, Steve Carrell, Tina Fey and the majority of the current/former stars of SNL. Sadly, I didn’t get any pictures. My bad.

I thought the purpose of going to Taste of Chicago this weekend was to see Robert Randolph and The Family Band Sunday afternoon. While that was still the major highlight; I knew my experience in Grant Park (you’ll remember Grant Park was the large area where Barack Obama made his acceptance speech on Election Night in 2008) was going to be outstanding when this was the image that greeted me…

tasteofchicago

And that was BEFORE I hit the Harry Caray’s booth. I’ve had potato chips before, but I’ve never had THESE…

chips

These ended up getting some cajun seasoning and hot sauce as well; and were REALLY.FREAKING.GOOD. Another highlight? The watermelon at the Dominick’s stand was BIGGER THAN MY FREAKING HEAD…

watermelon

After wandering through Taste of Chicago for a few hours and adding on 4-6,000,000 calories; we hit up Millenium Park. The place has some really cool artwork, including this mirror-art thingy that probably has a much better name than what I’m giving it right now…

millenium

The Independence Day festivities wrapped up at Navy Pier, where I just so happened to bump into Ravens DT Brandon McKinney; who let me know that he had been cleared (back) to fully return to practice and would be ready to go when the team reports to McDaniel College for Training Camp.

Good news.

Good trip.

When it hits 104 today, I might go right back.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP says Kevin Millwood roughed up as Orioles lost shootout to Tigers in Motown

Because I mentioned Motown and I’m gonna be depressed by talking about the O’s, let’s start today with “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTUiQzhA0Go[/youtube]

Speaking of which-Hey Kevin Millwood that started the season looking like a pitcher that might be able to get the Orioles something at the trade deadline: I WANT YOU BACK.

We’ll get back to Millwood shortly, as it wasn’t ONLY his fault yesterday. In fact, despite the fact that Millwood pitched only 1 inning, the Orioles actually came back to take the lead. Mark Hendrickson was particularly brutal after that, and the nine runs the Orioles managed to score didn’t much matter-although it is nice to see Jake Fox get another home run for a first baseman.

Geez…I’m excited about Jake Fox. What’s next? Getting excited about an indoor football game?

(Edit from GMC: I’m VERY excited for Saturday night’s AIFA Eastern Conference Championship Game between the Baltimore Mariners and Harrisburg Stampede at 1st Mariner Arena. I’ve always been an exception to the rules though.)

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

Here’s the thing. How could these teams have combined for 31 hits without Nick Markakis getting A SINGLE ONE OF THEM?!?!?!?

It puzzles me.

It would be like Kelly Brook posing for Ultimo Lingerie and me not posting pictures! (Thanks, Tim D!)

kellybrook

3. The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Birds have talked to Buck Showalter again, but he has not been offered job

But everyone seems to agree that he has moved past Eric Wedge and emerged as the front-runner. With no offense to Showalter, Wedge or anyone else involved in the process; this isn’t exactly like being the frontrunner in the Kentucky Derby. This is probably a little more like being the frontrunner in a race called by Rick from Reisterstown.

I have no idea what to make of this whole managerial search. It seemed like the team would be wise to let Juan Samuel finish things out this season and then make a hire after going through the full process in the offseason. Now it looks like they’re going to hire “The Best of What’s Around” (I’m going to see Dave Matthews Band Friday night, please forgive me) now.

I’d be surprised, but this is the Orioles we’re talking about. But don’t worry, Andy MacPhail is in charge and NOT Peter Angelos. Peter Angelos is totally out of the process, remember?

Remember?

Meanwhile-while the other candidates were busy being managerial candidates; Rick Dempsey was singing with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. God bless him…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2nBFL76274[/youtube]

4. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says injury concerns could land Millwood on DL

Well……FRICK.

The Birds were NEVER going to fleece a team in a Kevin Millwood trade before July 31; but there was at least a hope that they could get something more than the Chris Ray they gave up for him…or a player that had a CHANCE to be more than Chris Ray.

Given the way he’s fallen off the face of the planet and now could end up on the DL, hopes of that are starting to slim.

Millwood was the team’s best chance to get SOMETHING before the Trade Deadline. Ty Wigginton, Miguel Tejada, Luke Scott, Will Ohman, Cesar Izturis and even Hendrickson could all be dealt, but none are being dealt for anything significant. Tejada is the team’s 2nd best hope-but Tejada now says he wants to stick around in Charm City.

With no offense to Miguel, but I doubt that’s because he’s EXCITED about losing in Baltimore. My guess is that it’s because he realizes he’s unlikely to be an every day player for a team with a real chance at winning the World Series.

That’s where we are.

5. Virginian-Pilot says Chris Tillman brilliant in 1 hit performance for Norfolk Tides in win over Charlotte Knights on farm

Of course, with Tillman throwing another gem (this follows up on his earlier no hitter this season) at AAA; there will be more clamoring for Tillman to get called up. Should Kevin Millwood end up on the DL, there’s almost no chance he DOESN’T get called up.

I don’t think any of us will be as excited about it this time, but the organization will eventually have to find out if Tillman is anything more than a 4A guy.

Before we move on from the Orioles, a reminder that they’re back in action tonight against the Detroit Tigers again at Comerica Park. First pitch on MASN between Jake Arrieta and Armando Galarraga is at 7:05pm.

Look…there’s nothing else on. Not even “Glee.” Just watch the game. None of the rest of us want to do it either, we just don’t have much of a choice.

6. ABC2′s Christian Shaffer says Mt. Carmel basketball star John Crowder murdered in Baltimore

Now we enter the part of Crabs and Beer today that I absolutely like the least. This is a TERRIBLY tragic tale in a city full of terribly tragic tales.

This one will hit home, especially considering there was a chance Crowder could have ended up getting a scholarship from Gary Williams and playing in College Park.

No matter where his life WAS going, it appears as though he hung out with some guys that were less than savory. Of course, all of the rest of us have hung out with some less than desirables ourselves at one point or another.

My heart goes out to John Crowder’s family and friends, as well as everyone surrounding the athletic department at Mt. Carmel.

There’s a bigger problem in Baltimore…that much we know for sure.

7. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says former Ravens QB Steve McNair remembered Sunday on anniversary of death

I was wandering around Grant Park Sunday in Chi-Town when I saw someone approaching me wearing a Ravens jersey. Excited, I yelled out “Go Ravens!”

I didn’t get the response I was looking for.

The young man was wearing a Steve McNair jersey, and was not a Ravens fan as much as he was honoring a great NFL player on the anniversary of his murder.

For such an open and shut case, it feels as though little closure has come in the year since McNair’s death. I was unmoved by CBS’ investigation last fall that insinuated the Nashville police hadn’t been as thorough in their investigation as they should have been.

Armen Keteyian’s was chocked full of friends of Sahel Kazemi saying she “wasn’t a violent person” and “didn’t have this in her.” I’m not sure how many friends and family members of murder suspects/convicted murderers usually say “Yeah, I always assumed this would happen.”

There isn’t much more to be said, other than very clearly Steve McNair is still missed not only in Baltimore and Nashville, but also throughout the country.

Thus ends the sad part of today’s Crabs and Beer. Back to sports and hot chicks…

8. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says ’10 offseason amongst best in Ravens history

I don’t disagree with this AT ALL. In fact, it could end up being THE greatest offseason in franchise history if Anquan Boldin helps hoist the Vince Lombari Trophy in Dallas in the winter.

Clearly the moves made before the Super Bowl win have to be viewed as the best offseason in franchise history; but I’m not sure they’ve ever made a more PERFECT move than acquiring a player like Boldin this year.

They still COULD make it the best offseason in franchise history with one simple move. Just go get Kim Feenstra. (Thanks FHM/Guyism!)

feenstra

9. The Sun’s Don Markus says NCAA-sanctioned Baltimore Summer League opens tonight at Reitz Arena

This is awesome. Amongst the players who are committed to playing in this event are Morgan State’s Kevin Thompson, Missouri’s Kimmie English and Ricky Harris-who just finished his career at UMass. The event is VERY similar to the Kenner League at Georgetown, with current and former college standouts from Baltimore highlighting the field.

Thayne Gould put the entire event together at Loyola, he joined Drew Forrester this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST. If you missed it, make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out.

Will Carroll (Baseball Prospectus) also joined Drew to go around Major League Baseball, and Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network went not only around football-but also around the World Cup with Drew as well. We also replayed Friday’s interview with Ed Reed (we heard someone else was having him on 5 days later…); if you missed ANY of that, check it out in the Audio Vault as well.

10. Athlon Sports’ Eric Prisbell says 2010 likely final stand for Ralph Friedgen

There’s simply no question about that. If the Terps don’t show marked improvement (even 7-5 might not be enough for a new athletic director), things are set to change in College Park. The decision to keep Ralph and continue the succession plan with James Franklin was Debbie Yow’s. Another Athletic Director could be given more flexibility to go in another direction.

If there IS a coaching search in the future, I would like to be the first to suggest that the Terrapins consider Sheridyn Fisher… (Thanks Busted Coverage/Coed Magazine!)

sheridyn

And finally, I leave you with this.

While I’m frustrated that he didn’t play it Sunday afternoon; it’s not going to keep me from naming Robert Randolph’s “Walk Don’t Walk” this week’s “The Greatest Song of All Time This Week.” If you haven’t picked up the new disc “We Walk This Road” yet, you’re only hurting yourself.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3UOE9Sa6dw[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 06 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention-Auto Racing: NASCAR LifeLock.com 400 (Saturday 7:30pm from Chicago live on TNT); WNBA All-Star Game (Saturday 3:30pm from Mohegan Sun, CT live on ESPN)

10. Frankie Beverly & MAZE (Saturday 6pm Pier Six Pavilion), Counting Crows (Monday 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion); Lynyrd Skynyrd/Bret Michaels/38 Special (Friday 7pm Jiffy Lube Live), Tim McGraw (Saturday 7pm Jiffy Lube Live), Sting (Sunday 8pm Jiffy Lube Live); Pietasters & All Mighty Senators (Saturday 7pm Rams Head Live), Smashing Pumpkins (Monday 7pm Rams Head Live); Josh Thompson (Saturday 8pm Power Plant Live), Donavon Frankenreiter (Saturday 8pm Recher Theatre); “Despicable Me” in theaters (Friday)

Well, I’m going to need tickets to the Counting Crows Monday night. I don’t care how I get them, but someone is going to have to take care of me here. Adam Duritz is NOT coming to town with me missing it. Figure out amongst yourselves who is going to take care of the tickets for me and let me know.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXI7tRWmZ9w[/youtube]

I’m well aware that Skynyrd isn’t nearly the same; but I’d be all for chewing some tobacco, grabbing my confederate flag, and rocking out… (Editor’s Note: I will NOT be doing either of the first two things on that list.)

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

It’s fitting that I just back from Chicago, because the Smashing Pumpkins are also from Chicago. The two are in no ways related, but I had nothing else prepared here. Here’s Tonight Tonight. We’ll talk later.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAS6daVLT5U[/youtube]

9. Lacrosse: MLL All-Star Game (Thursday 7pm from Boston live on ESPN2), Boston Cannons @ Chesapeake Bayhawks (Saturday 7pm from Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium live on ESPN3)

You mean to tell me they’re playing a lacrosse all-star game in BOSTON?

Why not just hold next year’s Purple Camo convention in Beantown too???

camos

What do we have left in Charm City?!?!?!?

8. NBA Summer League: Utah Jazz vs. Orlando Magic (Tuesday 1pm), Charlotte Bobcats vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (Tuesday 3pm), Philadelphia 76ers vs. Boston Celtics (Tuesday 5pm), Indiana Pacers vs. New Jersey Nets (Tuesday 7pm), Charlotte Bobcats vs. Boston Celtics (Wednesday 1pm), Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Philadelphia 76ers (Wednesday 3pm), New Jersey Nets vs. Orlando Magic (Wednesday 5pm), Indiana Pacers vs. Utah Jazz (Wednesday 7pm), Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Orlando Magic (Thursday 1pm), Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics (Thursday 3pm), Utah Jazz vs. New Jersey Nets (Thursday 5pm), Philadelphia 76ers vs. Charlotte Bobcats (Thursday 7pm), Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Indiana Pacers (Friday 8am), Philadelphia 76ers vs. Utah Jazz (Friday 10am), New Jersey Nets vs. Boston Celtics (Friday 12pm), Charlotte Bobcats vs. Orlando Magic (Friday 2pm….all games from Orlando live on NBA TV); Denver Nuggets vs. Dallas Mavericks (Friday 4pm), Houston Rockets vs. Phoenix Suns (Friday 6pm), Detroit Pistons vs. Los Angeles Lakers (Friday 8pm), Golden State Warriors vs. New Orleans Hornets (Friday 10pm), Toronto Raptors vs. Phoenix Suns (Saturday 4pm), LA Lakers vs. Denver Nuggets (Saturday 6pm), Detroit Pistons vs. Golden State Warriors (Saturday 8pm), Miami Heat vs. New Orleans Hornets (Saturday 10pm), New York Knicks vs. Denver Nuggets (Sunday 4pm), Portland Trailblazers vs. Houston Rockets (Sunday 6pm), Washington Wizards vs. Golden State Warriors (Sunday 8pm), Miami Heat vs. New Orleans Hornets (Sunday 10pm), LA Lakers vs. New York Knicks (Monday 4pm), Sacramento Kings vs. Detroit Pistons (Monday 6pm), Dallas Mavericks vs. Milwaukee Bucks (Monday 8pm), Washington Wizards vs. LA Clippers (Monday 10pm….all games from Las Vegas live on NBA TV)

Dude…we should TOTALLY go to Vegas…and watch Eric Hayes play some basketball games that have the intensity of your average backyard pickup contest.

Oh, and free agency OFFICIALLY starts this week. You know, AFTER it officially started last week. In fairness, I’d honest to God rather hear daily LeBron James rumors than Kevin Millwood DL rumors. Credit to Mike Polk for this gem that I apologize for not posting before today…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bme-BAnCbXk[/youtube]

7. Pro Wrestling: TNA “Victory Road” (Sunday 8pm from Orlando live on Pay-Per-View)

Velvet Sky is part of TNA. Maybe you should consider watching…

velvet

6. Cycling: Tour De France (Tuesday-Friday 8:30am, Saturday & Sunday 7:30am from France live on VERSUS)

You know, I had thought about getting into cycling growing up. Yep, right up until my first one of these…

kneescrape

But now, if you’re interested in a stationary bike battle, I know just the guy for you. Yep. My roommate (“The Luckiest Dang Roommate on the Face of the Planet”). Don’t bother asking me. If it doesn’t involve Kettle Chips and a big screen TV, I’m not interested.

5. Golf: PGA Tour John Deere Classic (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel, Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on CBS; all golf from Silvis, Illinois), LPGA U.S. Women’s Open (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on ESPN, Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on NBC. All golf from Oakmont, PA)

In case you weren’t aware; Oakmont is a suburb of Pittsburgh. However, it is not the first time the women of the LPGA have stopped by. It’s just that the last time, they were trying to escape from Ben Roethlisberger…

bigben

4. Boxing: Jimmy Lange vs. Jimmy LeBlanc (Saturday 7:30pm Patriot Center), Mike Jones vs. Irving Garcia (Friday 11pm from Atlantic City live on Showtime), Juan Manuel Lopez vs. Bernabe Concepcion (Saturday 10pm from Hato Rey, Puerto Rico live on Showtime)

I won’t be attending Jimmy Lange’s fight Saturday night. Not because I don’t love Jimmy Lange, but more because Fairfax is near DC. I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but I’m not too popular in that part of the world these days. HOWEVER, if Jimmy Lange were fighting MATT LeBlanc, I’d be there in a second.  Ol’ “Joey” is still owed an ass-kicking for getting 7 bucks from me for this…

ed

Oh yeah, and while I’m at it….some dude named Mike Jones is fighting this weekend. Please indulge me…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sd0S0LwhEDU[/youtube]

And while we’re on the hip-hop topic, I have yet to learn how to “Dougie.” Can anyone help me with this???

3. College Basketball: Baltimore NCAA Summer League (Tuesday-Thursday 6:30pm Reitz Arena)

Morgan State’s Kevin Thompson and Missouri’s Kimmie English are amongst the college players already committed to participating in the tournament over at Loyola.  I’d go play myself, but apparently they use the WHOLE court. I’m better with just the basket and the automatic returner. Of course, I’m not quite as good as the guy Jimmy Kimmel found hanging out…

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

2. Indoor Football: AIFA Eastern Conference Championship Game- Harrisburg Stampede @ Baltimore Mariners (Saturday 7pm 1st Mariner Arena); AFL-Tampa Bay Storm @ Dallas Vigilantes (Friday 7:30pm from Dallas live on NFL Network)

Here’s what we know. Harrisburg sucks. I mean, how can you root for a team in the same town that freaking Sccop Stanisic played in?

Plus, the Mariners are undefeated. There’s NO WAY a team can go undefeated and then fall short of a title…

tyree

1. Soccer-World Cup: Uruguay vs. Netherlands (Tuesday 2:30pm from Cape Town, South Africa live on ESPN), Germany vs. Spain (Wednesday 2:30pm from Durban, South Africa live on ESPN), 3rd place match (Saturday 2:30pm from Port Elizabeth, South Africa live on ABC), World Cup Final (Sunday 2:30pm from Johannesburg, South Africa live on ABC); MLS: DC United @ New York Red Bulls (Saturday 7:30pm from Harrison, New Jersey live on Comcast SportsNet & MLS Direct Kick)

Uruguay gave us the Parrillada…

parrillada

The Dutch gave us goofy shoes…

shoes

The Germans gave us Lederhosen…

lederhosen

And the Spanish gave us her…

spanish

So clearly, anything short of Spain-Paraguay Sunday would be totally unacceptable.

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Enduring the second half: What I’d like to see from the Orioles (Part 1 of 2)

Posted on 05 July 2010 by Luke Jones

With the Orioles officially reaching the halfway point of the season on Sunday, the second half of the schedule began much like the first—with a 12-9 loss in Detroit on Monday afternoon.

It’s no secret that much of Baltimore has shifted its attention to the Ravens and the upcoming start of training camp with the Orioles appearing destined to finish with the worst record in franchise history. Whether you choose to persevere through the season’s final three months or tune out in hopes of regaining your sanity after the horrid first half, much needs to be accomplished between now and October—on and off the field.

The most critical question of whether Andy MacPhail and Peter Angelos will commit to significantly improving the roster via free agency and trades in the offseason will linger long after October—and beyond—but in the mean time, a plethora of other issues can be addressed, some by the organization and others by players themselves.

If I had a crystal ball to predict what will unfold over the final three months of 2010, here’s what I’d like to see:

1. A new skipper is hired

This one is a no-brainer, but it’s imperative that the Orioles bring in a guy who truly wants the job and is willing to do the legwork of changing the culture of losing that exists in the clubhouse. It won’t happen by season’s end or even in 2011, but the club needs a dynamic leader.

I’ve championed Buck Showalter as the man, mainly due to his work with the Arizona Diamondbacks during the infancy of the franchise. Showalter, of course, did not stick around long enough to enjoy the fruits of his labor when Arizona won the World Series in 2001, but his obsessive work ethic could hopefully do wonders for the Orioles’ player development.

With MacPhail’s preference for an experienced manager, Showalter might be the man needed to ruffle some feathers, not only at the big-league level but throughout the organization.

2. A true commitment to the international market is made

While most have focused on the Orioles’ inability—or unwillingness—to make improvements through free agency and their poor track record with the amateur draft for the better part of 25 years, the organization continues to abstain from the international market.

The Orioles have opened a baseball academy in the Dominican Republic, but far more needs to be done on the international front, both in the Caribbean and the Far East. The club’s sheer number of international scouts pales in comparison to their competitors in the American League East, a simple but poignant indication that the organization is not doing enough to find talent elsewhere in the world.

And no, signing a 33-year-old Koji Uehara two winters ago doesn’t qualify as really trying.

It won’t fix the franchise alone, but tapping into the international waters instead of wasting $5 million on the Garrett Atkins types of the world every winter is a far better use of resources with a higher potential reward.

As one simple example, Robinson Cano, my choice for Most Valuable Player of the first half, was signed out of the Dominican by the New York Yankees. Talent is out there; it’s up to the Orioles to find and develop it.

3. Do whatever it takes to fix Matt Wieters

The claims of “Mauer with Power” and “Switch-Hitting Jesus” were always ridiculous, but no one—inside or outside of Baltimore—expected Matt Wieters to struggle as he has over the first 600-plus at-bats of his major league career.

It’s not just the .239 average or the lack of power (.344 slugging percentage) this season, but his approach at the plate is undisciplined and his swing is passive, often looking to slap the ball somewhere instead of attacking the baseball when he gets a good pitch to hit.

Many blame Terry Crowley while others will point to the team’s struggles and the overwhelming expectations bestowed upon the young catcher, but Wieters needs help to realize his vast potential.

Whether it’s a new hitting coach, a former Oriole such as Eddie Murray working with him, a demotion to the minors, or the apparition of Charley Lau returning to tinker with his swing, Wieters must get on track if the Orioles are to pull themselves out of this 13-year abyss. Aside from the final month of his rookie season, he’s looked nothing like the future star so many projected him to be.

For the record, I still believe Wieters eventually becomes a good-to-great catcher in the big leagues, but the organization must do everything in its power to help him.

Immediately.

4. The trade pieces perform and are dealt at the deadline

Anyone with delusions that Kevin Millwood, Ty Wigginton, Miguel Tejada, Jeremy Guthrie, or any other veteran would fetch a return comparable to the one the Orioles received for Erik Bedard a few years ago was always setting himself up for disappointment, but these players have a few more weeks to improve their value in hopes of being dealt.

Millwood’s struggles are painfully apparent as the 35-year-old was shelled again on Monday afternoon in Detroit, lasting only an inning while giving up five runs against the Tigers lineup. His 2010 story has transformed from a sympathetic figure (standing at 0-4 despite a 3.26 ERA on May 8th) to one who can’t get anyone out (5.77 ERA after Monday’s start).

Even if MacPhail was unable to find a suitable deal for Millwood at the deadline, there were hopes that Millwood could perhaps fetch a compensatory pick as a Type B free agent—and certain to reject arbitration—but as Millwood’s ERA continues to skyrocket, that likelihood is becoming very unlikely.

Wigginton would appear to have the most value with his recent All-Star selection and the versatility of playing several positions on the diamond, but his hot start feels like a long time ago, and the numbers support it.

Entering Monday afternoon’s game, Wigginton has hit just .218 in 202 at-bats since May 3. For the sake of fetching a better return, a Wigginton hot streak would do wonders by the July 31st deadline.

Tejada might be an attractive option for a team looking for a third baseman or even a short-term answer at shortstop, but his .373 slugging percentage suggests a singles hitter, not the man who once led the league in runs batted in or even the hitter who led the National League in doubles last season. In other words, teams won’t be knocking down the door at the Warehouse to get him.

Guthrie might be the most valuable piece as he’s under control for two more seasons. His 4.64 ERA isn’t sparking by any stretch of the imagination, but a National League team looking for an arm to supplement the back-end of the starting rotation could do far worse than Guthrie.

Of course, the Orioles could elect to hold on to Guthrie because of those two years of control and his positive presence for a young rotation.

Reliever Will Ohman (2.88 ERA) might be another trade candidate, but it’s hard to imagine getting anything more than minor league filler for the lefty specialist.

5. Brian Roberts gets healthy for 2011

The simple act of Brian Roberts taking the field again in 2010 matters very little for a team currently 32 games below .500, but it might be viewed as a symbolic act to show he will be fully-recovered in 2011, the second year of a four-year extension signed 17 months ago.

Roberts is once again taking batting practice in Sarasota, but we’ve heard this story several times already. Surgery continues to be ruled out by all parties, so it’s imperative for Roberts’ back to hold up as we’re now approaching a time frame in which surgery could jeopardize the start of his preparation for the 2011 season.

It’s too late to debate whether it was a good idea to give the then-31-year-old Roberts a four-year extension, so you can only hope the decision to rest and rehabilitate the herniated disc proves to be the right one for his career.

If there’s any long-term risk for Roberts to try to play baseball again in 2010, he should be shut down immediately and given the rest of the season to rest.

Check out Part 2 of what I’d like to see from the Orioles over the season’s final three months later this week.

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Orioles’ Minor Leaguers On the Move; Britton: “This is the Last Step of the Developmental Process for Me”

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Orioles’ Minor Leaguers On the Move; Britton: “This is the Last Step of the Developmental Process for Me”

Posted on 02 July 2010 by Ryan Chell

With a lot of movement around the Orioles minor leagues over the last two days, three Baltimore prospects, including two of the organization’s top players, made the most of their opportunities with new teams.

On Wednesday night, former Delmarva pitcher Nathan Moreau, in his first start since joining the Orioles’ Single A Frederick , threw a no-hitter in his Keys debut against the Salem Red Sox.

Not a bad start for Moreau, who not only threw the sixth career no-hitter for the Keys organization, but he also threw his first ever complete game and shutout all in the same night.

Moreau told Drew Forrester on “The Morning Reaction” that he was really focused, cause he doesn’t really remember anything that happened outside of his pitching performance.

Nathan Moreau

“I was in the zone so much that I didn’t even feel what the audience was doing,” Moreau said. “I heard some cheers after the game…but during the game I couldn’t tell you.”

And his teammates made sure to not jinx him either.

“It all started in the seventh inning. I like to talk to guys in the dugout,” Moreau said. “Everybody started moving away, so I said “okay…I’ll sit down and do the role’.”

It is arguably the best start ever for the former Georgia Bulldog, who the Orioles took in the 11th round of the 2008 draft.

His fastball was strong on the night, and the Red Sox were caught off-balance by the southpaw’s ability to change speeds. Most of his outs were recorded via fly outs, and he struck out six.

“I was able to keep the ball down for the most part of the night. They put some good swings on a couple of the balls, and the outfielders ran them out and made tough plays making awesome catches at the wall. That really helps.”

He faced the minimum 27 batters despite two errors committed; ironically, one was made by Moreau himself.

Moreau said that he started thinking he was in good position after the fourth inning, because he had a start earlier this year in Delmarva where he pitched four perfect frames and eventually lost it in the fifth.

He feels like that while he is still only in Single A, it’s just another step in his progression toward hopefully making the big league club some day.

“That’s my plan. That’s why we all play. I go out there everyday, compete, and try and put up the best numbers I can.”

The promotions continued at the Orioles’ Triple A affiliate, Norfolk, where one of the top pitching prospects in Andy MacPhail‘s organization, Zach Britton, made his Tides debut as he moved up from Bowie.
Zach Britton
In his International League debut, Britton went six innings, allowing three hits while striking out four. But he did not earn the win, posting a no decision.

Britton spent a few minutes with Luke Jones and Rex Snider before making that first start at the highest level of the Orioles farm system.

At Double-A Bowie, Britton was pitching very well and certainly that was a factor in Orioles management making the decision to change Britton’s team.

A third-round pick by the Orioles in 2006 out of high school, Britton started 14 games for the Baysox, going 7-3 with a 2.48 ERA and recorded 68 strikeouts in 76 innings.

Britton said it’s a great league for young pitchers to start to acclimated to how teams face pitchers in the major leagues, when it comes to batters seeing your repertoire.

“It’s a good league to make adjustments,” Britton said. “I faced the Kinston Indians about 10-12 times out of my 24 starts. It’s a lot of time for them to see me and make adjustments on me.  I feel like it that’s a really good league where you learn how to pitch, since you can’t keep just doing the same thing.”

But while Moreau’s trip to Baltimore may be many years away, Britton( the 2009 Carolina League Pitcher of the Year) is maybe a step or two away from the big leagues if he continues to pitch well.

And given the movement of Orioles pitchers Brad Bergesen, Chris Tillman, and Jake Arrieta back and forth between Norfolk and Baltimore, Britton could be one phone call away from the big leagues if an injury or a trade-maybe Kevin Millwood or Jeremy Guthrie-occurs now that he is in the mix at Triple-A.

“During spring training, my goal was to get to Baltimore. They felt like that was something I could accomplish this year… toward the end of the season. It all depends on how I go out and perform.”

“This is the last step of the developmental process for me,” Britton continued. “They given me the promotion, and I’m going to take it as a challenge and hopefully continue to do well in Triple-A.”

And finally, in last night’s game between the O’s and the Athletics, if you want to talk about curve balls, the biggest one of the day was the decision to promote third baseman Josh Bell from Triple A Norfolk to start in the finale against Oakland.

Josh Bell

The move was retroactive to Baltimore placing Luke Scott on the DL Thursday after he hurt his hamstring taking a stroll around the base path Wednesday after hitting a home run.

Bell, the centerpiece of the George Sherrill trade to the Dodgers last year, went 1-for-4 in his major league debut and recorded his first career hit in the seventh inning-a single off A’s starter Trevor Cahill. He also struck out once and also committed an error.

Bell said that he was just trying to keep his whits about him after being given the news. Bell was probably just as shocked as the fans and the media were about the decision to promote him.

I’m anxious a little bit and ready to get after it,” Bell told the Carroll County Times’ Josh Land last night. “I feel good. I thought I would be a little more nervous, but I’m trying to control it.”

Bell is probably a temporary move with both Felix Pie and Mike Gonzalez both expected to rejoin the ball club in the near future.

For now, let’s hope these prospects continue to adjust to their new teams, and Bell can tear the cover off the ball for the time he’s playing for the big league club, so much so that he either helps the O’s get some much needed wins before the All-Star break, or learns a few things about the major leagues before continuing his progression down at Norfolk.

Tune into 1570 WNST as we continue to track the progress of these and all the Orioles prospects! WNST-We Never Stop Talking Baltimore Sports!

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