Sunday, October 14, 2012

Thanks O's!!!

Now that I've had some time to cool off and put that series with the Yankees behind me I can post this. I can't stand the Yankees and that organization. Some would say well that's because of their history and their dominance. I disagree. You see I hate the Steelers but there is some sincere respect for the team and their organization. As for the Evil Empire I don't respect a team that has a payroll two to three times that of most teams in the league, and shame on MLB for not leveling the playing field. With that payroll and talent you should win.
Enough of my rant. I'm proud of the boys of Bmore! After finishing 69-93 nobody gave them a chance to make it this far. For good reasons to. I mean who goes from 69 wins to 93 in one season especially when you've had 14 losing seasons? Well now you can say the 2012 Orioles that's who. What was the difference you ask. Well how about a bunch of guys that were cast offs. Guys that were released and had down seasons and traded. Guys from the likes of Omar Quintanilla, Jim Thome, Nate Mclouth, Jason Hammel, and Joe Saunders. Throw them in with a bunch of young guys in the rotation and 20 year old third basemen and some key leaders in Jones, Markakis, and Hardy and it turned into a winning recipe. Not sure what happened to the bats but if they didn't cool off when they did we could be talking about a team set for the big stage. I can't complain though. After waiting and agonizing for 14 years this team was fun to watch and sparked that fire in all of Bmore. 2012 O's we're proud of you and thank you for this season. It was a blast, but you're not done. Keep building, keep scrapping, and let's get ready for 2013. This wasn't our year but I think we sent a message to the AL East. The Birds are back and we are no longer taking a back seat to anyone anymore!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Week 6 NFL Picks

Last week was another down the toilet. If you want to see my disasterous picks go here. Man this season has been a little crazy. Only thing keeping me from breaking down is how the Ravens are positioning themselves in the division. Last week for the black birds was rough. They didn't look good at all on defense, but Charles is going to make a lot of defenses look that way.

Alright let's gets some good picks this week and turn the around.

Pittsburgh @ Tennessee
I'll excuse this game if the Titans can pull it off, but Steelers win

Oakland @ Atlanta
The Falcons are flying high. They continue to soar this week.

Cincy @ Cleveland
Division game at home for the Browns, and they are 0-5 this season. They have to snap that losing streak. I'm going with a Cleveland upset.

St Louis @ Miami
I don't like picking dome teams when playing outdoors. Calling for rain this weekend. I'm going Miami.

Indy @ NY Jets
I love seeing the Jets lose, and I think Indy has things figured out and riding high after beating the Packers.

Detroit @ Philthy
Hate to pick 'em but Eagles win.

Kansas City @ Tampa Bay
I don't want to pick KC on the road, but the numbers comparision has me leaning that way.What the heck KC

Dallas @ Baltimore
Baltimore has put up 30 points past 2 meetings. With this new offense I don't see why they can't again. Baltimore wins

Buffalo @ Arizona
I don't know why I always want to lean toward Buffalo in these picks. Not this time. Arizona

New England @ Seattle
Seattle at home against a big competitor. You know what that means. That mean Seattle is going to upset. Can't do it. New England wins

NY Giants @ San Fran
Going with San Fran here

Minnesota @ Washington
Questionable starting QB in Washington has me leaning to the Vikings.

Green Bay @ Houston
What is up with GB? Houston wins

Denver @ San Diego
I think the records will even out this week. Denver wins.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Week 5 NFL Picks

Alright so apparently I was so unhappy with previous weeks picks I wanted to redo them. I labeled last weeks picks Week 3 Picks. Oh well. Anyway last week was my best week of the season as I went 12-3 last week. Want to see last weeks picks click here. That brings my standings after the first quarter of the season to 35-28. Not the best start but over .500.

Let's take a look at week 5.

Arizona @ St Louis
How can you not pick against the hotter team in this matchup? Arizon wins 21-17

Miami @ Cincy
Cincy is 3-1 going up against the 1-3 Dolphins. Not impressed with the quality of the teams Cincy has beat but they should take this game at home.

Green Bay @ Indy
Not much to say here. Going GB!

Baltimore @ KC
Could be a high scoring affair. Baltimore is giving up yards and KC has some stand out offensive players. Cassel however has thrown 7 picks in 4 games. Baltimore will force some turnovers in the second half.

Cleveland @ NY Giants
G-men are the better team and take this game at home.

Philly @ Pittsburgh
I can't stand either of these teams. That said I still have to pick one. Philly is the team you hate to pick because of the way they've been winning as of late. I'm going with the more hated Steelers.

Atlanta @ Washington
Here's another team I can't stand, the Falcons. I'm picking with my heart a little here because I want to see Atlanta get whooped.

Seattle @ Carolina
Seattle is pretty shaky on the road. Carolina wins.

Chicago @ Jacksonville
Bears have the better team.

Tennessee @ Minnesota
Minn knocked off SF and Detroit in the past 2 weeks. The titans should be a breeze.

Denver @ New England
Tough, tough game. Patriots can be beaten. I'm going with Denver coming into NE and knocking off the Pats

Buffalo @ San Fran
San Fran. That's all

San Diego @ New Orleans
Oh how the Saints, keep losing games, oh how the Saints keep losing games. San Diego should have their number and the Saints keep losing games!

Houston @ NY Jets
The Jets are hurting. Literally! Houston wins

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Week 3 NFL Picks

WOW is all I can say after last weeks games! Last week I went a pitiful 6-10. I'm blaming it on the replacement refs. Just kidding. However the games with these refs are terrible. I'm not blaming them personally though because they are way out of their league and really have no business being out there. All I can say is shame on the NFl for putting that product out on the field! Anyway if you want to see my disaster picks from last week just click here.
All I can say is week 4 has to be better than week 3, so let's get at it.

Cleveland @ Baltimore
A short week for both teams, but Baltimore gets to stay home. It's tough for any team to come in here and beat the Ravens ad Harbaugh is a perfect 8-0 against the Browns. I don't think that will change and the Ravens move onto a 3-1 record.
Carolina @ Atlanta
The last 4 times these two teams met the Falcons won all 4 and scored 31 points each game. Atlanta sitting at 3-0 should stay perfect but I can see the Panthers sneaking one out here.
New England @ Buffalo
Buffalo's Spiller is running and Fitzpatrick has double the amount of TD's than Brady. I think with the way they lost last week NE should rebound here.
Minnesota @ Detroit
Detroit seems the obvious choice here, but they lost in SF and then again last week in OT to Tenn. Minnesota however beat Jacksonville in OT in week 1 and lost by 3 to Indy then go on and beat SF last week. I may be the only one but I'm going with the Viking upset here.
Tennessee @ Houston
Tennessee won in OT against the Lions when they realy shouldn't have. Going into Houston who is 3-0 is going to be tought and the Titans don't have it in them to win this week.
San Diego @ Kansas City
Looking at just stats alone KC is throwing the ball and running the ball a lot more than SD. KC is loud and the way they're offense is going I think they can hang with SD. The question is can KC's defense hold SD's offense and keep them from running up the score? Offense is fun to watch but defense wins championships (in most cases) SD wins.
San Fran @ NY Jets
Two 2-1 teams bumping heads and the Jets are witout Revis. The Jets are averaging under 100 yds rushing a game while SF is allowing under 100yds on the ground. NY is going to have to go to air and I'm not big on Sanchez. SF wins.
Seattle @ St Louis
Seattle had no business winning last week. I don't like this game from a pick'em stand point. Either one can easily come away this week with a W. I'm going to go with the team playing better defense right now and that's Seattle.
Miami @ Arizona
Oh Arizona how I curse at you! I have picked against you numerous times so far and you have burned me! Looking at the numbers you put up you shouldn't be 3-0. I am telling you now I am not picking you to win this week! I mean come on your QB is only averaging 143 yards passing a game. Your running back has 76 yards which is 25 yards a game average and he has no TD's. Really you beat the Patriots in NE and held Philly to 6 points? Alright you know what I don't know how you did it but there must be something bigger work in your favor and who am I to say you have no chance. I don't know why I'm doing this but Arizona wins.
Oakland @ Denver
I think Denver gets back in the win column this week. Thank you Raiders for kncoking off Pittsburgh last week, but I think you're coming up short this week.
Cincy @ Jacksonville
Cincy has the better balance and potent offense. Cincy wins.
New Orleans @ Green Bay
Man NO has had a rough startand it's no easier this week! Green Bay coming off what they went through in Seattle is going to battle to stay out of falling to 1-3. They are home and beat up on the battered Saints.
Washington @ Tampa Bay
I like what Griffin III is doing in DC. I refuse to call him RG3 or R2D2 or whatever. The Skins are putting up some points and had 2 tough loses of late but should get a win here.
NY Giants @ Philly
The Eagles drive me nuts. Barely beat Cleveland, and should have lost to the Ravens, and then go and get slapped around by the Cardinals. Since their fans like to boo at everything I hope they boo them all the way to another loss this week. G-men win.
Chicago @ Dallas
Should be a good game. Going with Dallas with a slight edge.

There you have it. I'm hoping this week turns out better than last week!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Week 3 NFL Picks

Last week was terrible! Terrible for my Ravens, and terrible in picks. Last week I went 8-8 and you can see those picks here. I'm hoping to bounce back this week. I'm just going to highlight the teams I'm picking to win this week without any game comments. My wife and I are renewing our vows this weekend in celebration of 10 years of marriage. So we've been busy. I know I said it before but I will be writing more once this weekend is over.

NY Giants @ Carolina
St Louis @ Chicago
Buffalo @ Cleveland
Tampa Bay @ Dallas
Jacksonville @ Indy
NY Jets @ Miami
San Fran @ Minnesota
Kansas City @ New Orleans
Detroit @ Tennessee
Cincy @ Washington
Philly @ Arizona
Atlanta @ San Diego
Houston @ Denver
Pittsburgh @ Oakland
New England @ Baltimore
Green Bay @ Seattle

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Week 2 NFL Picks

Alright week 1 is in the books and I have started out the season with a 9-7 record. If you want to see last weeks picks check them out here. I wasn't happy with some of them, but some were hard to judge week 1.

Alright you ready for this week's picks? Let's dive in!!!
Chicago @ Green Bay
You hate to pick against Rodgers and the Packers, but I'm giving the edge to the Bears. GB may be able to pass but they don't have the ability to be more balanced and run the ball.

Kansas City @ Buffalo
Let's see, maybe a tie game? I don't like either of these teams right now. Buffalo let me down big time last week. I thought maybe they could pull off a close game and they got bombed. KC comes into Ralph Wilson and wins 21-17

New Orleans @ Carolina
I look for the Saints to bounce back against the Panthers this week. 35-20

Cleveland @ Cincy
The Browns almost knocked off the Eagles in week 1 and the Bengals were knocked around by the Ravens. Cincy isn't going to let the low man in the division beat them at home. Bengal take out some frustration and beat the Browns

Minnesota @ Indy
Not a big fan of the Vikings and think Indy has enough going for them to win this game. Luck gets his first win week 2

Houston @ Jacksonville
Houston is riding a 3 game win streak against the Jags last year and continue that win streak this week. Houston should win easy.

Oakland @ Miami
Everything is telling me to pick the Raiders, but for some reason I just can't. I'm going with my gut and saying Miami wins this one at home.

Arizona @ New England
Short and sweet Patriots win

Tampa Bay @ NY Giants
I'm picking the G-men to win again. They better not let me down this week.

Baltimore @ Philly
I love the new offensive look the Ravens are running. Defense needs to get some pressure on the QB but last week once we got the lead they tightened up. I can't believe we are early underdogs to the Eagles but whatever. Ravens contain Vick like they have in the past and the Ravens win!

Dallas @ Seattle
Seattle a tough place to go play because their stadium is loud. However the last time the Seahawks beat the Cowboys was back in 2007 in Seattle. Dallas should win this game.

Washington @ St Louis
Washington looked good against the Saints. I think they can carry that over and play well against the Ram's. Griffin III has given that team a boost in the offense and the Redskins win.

NY Jets @ Pittsburgh
I can tell you what I would love to see happen, but I think I'm going pick the Steeler's at home. I'm just not sold on Sanchez being a starting QB.

Tennessee @ San Diego
Looking back to 2004 and SD is 6-0 against the Titans. San Diego wins at home this week.

Detroit @ San Fran
All everyone is talking about is the handshake from last year. This is another match up where if you look back to 2001 the 49ers are 6-0 against the Lions. This isn't the same Lions of the early 2000's but I still think SF wins at home. Coming off a huge win against the Packers I don't see them losing this one.

Denver @ Atlanta
This matchup is a good one and tough to pick when there isn't much history between the two. Atlanta coming off a win in KC and Denver off a big win against the Steelers. I'm going with Denver.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Sad Day For The Ravens Family

This morning Baltimore awoke to the news that Art Modell had passed. I know the view on Mr Modell is mixed. Especially those living in Cleveland. He's even been compared to Irsay in the way the moved his team. Let me first say that Art was nothing like Irsay. Art tried and did what he could to keep his team in Cleveland and there was no cooperation. Irsay was a drunkard that had no intention on staying no matter what was offered to him and like a coward shipped the team out in the middle of the night. Another difference was the class move by Mr Modell to allow Cleveland to keep their history and team color's and name. For that I say "Thank you Art!" Man would I hate to be the Baltimore Brown's. Indy is sporting our name and took our history with them, all while pushing all the Baltimore greats like Unitas and Mackey aside and not wanting to have anything to do with them until recently when they wanted to make money off them with license plate sales. Let's not focus on this one dicision Mr Modell made, and let's look at all of the other's that has helped mold this league into what it is today.
Mr Modell was a supporter of expansion of NFL teams and growing the league, and was part of the merger of the AFL and NFL back in 1970. Was a part of creating preseason football bringing in more revenue for the league and also revenue-sharing plans which leveled the playing field for all teams in the league. In 1970 he offered his team the Browns to play the Jets on Monday night. Which was the first Monday football game and was the start of the Prime Time game it is today. Beyond his contributions to the league and bringing football back to Baltimore Art and his wife were always even in Cleveland big on helping the community and doing their part to help those in need.
A few years ago I was lucky even to be given the chance to help with the camera crew down on the field. That season was also the last in which Art was the majority owner and his two sons John and David were in their roles with the team. I wasn't able to meet Art himself but did meet John and David and if they were anything like their father I'm sure he was a great person, as the two of them came across to be. I also had a front row view of Mr Modell on stage after we won the Super Bowl and after the parade was over and they gathered on stage Mr Modell did his best Ray Lewis dance. It wasn't quite the same but he gave it his all. Mr. Modell may you rest in peace! From all of us fans here in Baltimore, for bringing us our Ravens we say to you...

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

This IS September right?

It is hard to believe but it is September and Orioles are tied for first place with the Evil Empire Yankees. I mean this is September right? For the past 14 years whenever Sept we were already ramped up for the season because the O's were well out of it. This is nice! This I definitely can get used to. As I'm writing this the O's are up on the Blue Jays and the Rays are up on the Yankees. If things continue which I hope they do. The O's will be in sole possession of first. Then we go into a 4 game series at home against the Yanks. This could be a great weekend. Think I might go out and buy some crabs and sit back with a Natty Boh and enjoy!

NFL Week 1 Picks

Man did this NFL season sneak up on me. I can't believe it's starting tonight. Which in it self is weird starting on a Wednesday. Let's get things going.

Dallas @ NY Giants
Cowboys usually kick the season off strong and then fade in the later weeks. Giants got caught up in the trash talking this week but they have the talent to carry that swagger and confidence. Not to mention, no superbowl winner has lost it's season opener since 2004. G-men win this one!
Indy @ Chicago
New era in Indy and Luck is what they are going to need this season. I think the Bears are more experienced and have the talent to knock off Indy.

Philly @ Cleveland
Clevelanders are excited about the new direction their team is heading, but it's still a bit soon. Philly rolls over the Browns easy this week.

StL @ Detroit
We'll see if either of these injury prone QB's will finish the game, but I'm going with the more potent passing attack thet the Lions are going to bring. Lions win at home and Suh get's a flag thrown.

Miami @ Houston
The Dolphins head out to Houston and lose week 1. Houston runs the ball better, throws the ball better, and has the better defense.

Atlanta @ KC
Atlanta last year was 3-5 on the road and the Chiefs were 4-4 at home. That said the Chiefs offense still looks horrible, and the Falcons fly in and take this game by 17.

Jacksonville @ Minnesota
The Londona Jaguars, oh I mean the Jacksonville Jaguars have a new owner and building but it's not a finished product yet. Giving the edge to the home team in the dome. Minnesota wins 17-9

Washington @ NO
Even with all that is going on in New Orleans I still think Drew Brees is going to be too much for the Redskins. NO wins.

Buffalo @ NY Jets
I went back and forth with this one. I'm going with my gut and saying Bills take this game. I always lean the Bills way in this matchup and maybe it's a little part of me hoping they do win it. I don't know but whatever the reasoning I'm going with the Bills and that's that.

New England @ Tennessee
New England has owned this matchup and it's not going to be any different this time. NE wins unfortunately.

Seattle @ Arizona
Not liking anyone playing QB for Arizona. Seattle wins this easy.

I like SF and what they're doing out there in the Bay. However I don't like them that much to say they beat the Packers. Especially since the past 6 times these teams have met GB has owned them taking all 6 easily. GB all the way.

Carolina @ Tampa Bay
Another team that interests me in the way they are rebuilding is Tampa. With that said I'm going with the Panthers and what we saw from them last year.

Pittsburgh @ Denver
Alright you all know where my heart is going on this one. Obviously I would love nothing more than to see the Steelers lose to the Broncos. You know what, with the injuries that have plagued the Steelers I'm siding with the Broncos on this one. Boncos win a close one 17-14

Cincy @ Baltimore
The Bengals have played us close and this game isn't going to be any different. Cincy is weak in the middle of their O-line and Ngata, Cody and Ray can exploit that weakness. You tie that together with our new no huddle offense and some new toys for Joe. I think we win this and win 28-17.

San Diego @ Oakland
Tough but I'm going Oakland. I would say with the upset but I don't think this game is an upset either way. Oakland by 3.

There you have it. Sorry it wasn't more detailed but this week cam up fast. I will break down the Ravens and Bengals in a day or so.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Orange Koolaid Anyone?

Alright so I've been drinking the orange Koolaid for a while now this season, and I have got to know. If you weren't drinking it before are you drinking it now? If not then, WHY THE HECK NOT? Let me break this down for you. Right now the Orioles sit at 62-53. At this exact point last year we were 45-72, 2010 we were 41-75, 2009 47-67, 2008 58-62. Heck let's look back to when we last won the division in '97 at this point we were 73-42. That's only 9 games away from where we are right now and we finish that season 98-64. Look we have 47 games left in the season and we sit 5 1/2 games out of first place behind the Evil Empire and currently in the second wild card spot behind the Rays. Say we split the remaining games and go 85-77. When was the last time we finished in contention this late in the season and over .500? Heck tell me at the beginning of the season if someone told you we would finish with that record you wouldn't be laughing at them and saying "Yeah right". So I ask you again "Why aren't you drinking the Koolaid yet?"
Can this team tank the remaining 47 games? Sure. I mean they have a tough schedule left. Heck the rest of this month we have the Red Sox, Tigers, Rangers, Blue Jays, White Sox, and Yankees. Can we lose some of those games? Yeah, but I think we have proven this year that we can hang with these teams, and in years past we have finish strong in September playing the role of spoiler. Which lets face it that's all we had to play for.
The moves we have made this season aren't flashy, and big name signings but seem to be exactly what is needed. We needed to fix our fielding woes since we lead the league in errors. It seems we have done that in picking up and putting McLouth, Quintanilla, and Ford in the field. You add to that bringing up Machado and our fielding has been much improved.
That brings me to my next topic here. I was concerned with the bringing up of Machado because in years past we have brought guys up and they never panned out. Now I'm not about to crown the guy a Hall of Famer, but he has been quite impressive. In 4 games he is hitting .375 with 3 HR 7 RBI's and 5 runs scored. Heck in the 6 hits he's recorded he has the 3 HR's a double and a triple (which was his first major league hit). So 5 of his 6 hits have been for extra bases. There's been the haters saying yeah but it was against the Royals pitching. Yeah well who else put up those kind of numbers this past series? Yup keeping looking because no one did.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Orioles Magic is back. This team is in competition to make a push for the off season. Will we go far? Probably not but who knows. That's why they play the games right? I said it last post, I haven't even been following the Ravens training camp because I'm fixated on the O's. We have never had an Orioles team in competition and a successful Ravens team. It looks as tough we may have that now. Football season is right around the corner, but until then LET"S GO O'S!!!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

How Bout Dem O's Hon

Can't get enough of that Baltimore expression these days! The O's in the win column again last night sweeping the Mariners putting them 4.5 games behind the Evil Empire (Yankees) and tied for the final wild card spot with the A's. I'm telling you I am loving how this season is playing out so far.
One thing I wanted to get to was the roster moves the Orioles are completing today. They are calling up one of their 2 top prospects today in Manny Machado. I'm not too sure about this move. The first thing that comes to mind is "Is he ready?" I guess you never know until you put him in there. The other thing that has me worried about is, will moving him up this early ruin him? We've had guys come up that we thought were ready and they have fizzled out and didn't become what everyone thought they were going to be. Then again everyone's diferent and this is turning into a different orginzation than years past. With different front office personel and coaches. We'll see. I hope he does become what everyone thinks he will be and become a starting infielder for us. Word is he may be starting at third tonight, making a slide to the right from his usual spot at short stop. God knows we could really use someone with a glove over there at third. We are leading the majors in errors and a good chunk of those coming from third. Betemit and Reynolds just aren't getting it done in the field.
Another move that may happen today is the promotion of the Orioles second top prospect Dylan Bundy. He has swiftly moved through the minors this season starting in A Delmarva and then to AA Frederick. Now it looks as though he is moving again and this time to AA Bowie. In 19 minor league games so far this season he started 19 games posting a 1.92 ERA and in 84 1/3 innings has struck out 103 batters and 19 walks. Pretty impressive. Very curious to see how he does up in Bowie!
Don't have much time now so I'll keep up on any more news I hear and pass it along.

O's start a series tonight against the Royals. Let's start another sweep!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Still out there?

Alright so it's been some time since my last post. To be exact my last post was back in March. You had the NFL season close and the end of the season buzz started to fade. Giving way to the increasing excitment to the start of the MLB season. I have to apologize for the break. We've been busy with summer stuff and the start of our product review blog which has taken off faster than we could have imagined. So I've been spending some extra time with that. Also honestly I've been enjoying this baseball season that the Orioles have provided us. I keep saying I hope the Orioles can keep this up and not let things slide like they ave in seasons past. So far they haven't let me down. My hopes for a strong finish continue to grow since in years past they have played the role in beating teams with winning records. The problem was we already had 80-90 loses by then. I like the little acquisitions they have made in Thome and Quintanilla. Just bringing a guy like Thome with his personality and experience your giving these young guys something they haven't had since Kevin Millar was in town. Wei Yin Chen has been a great surprise coming over considering most of the talk before the season was about Wada. Then you had Hammel who was lighting it up on the mound until he was injured. Hoping he can make it back and give us a little extra push. Alright am I drinking the orange cool-aid? YES and by the pitcher full at that. After 14 straight losing seasons I have been dying to see this team back in the mix and I think that time has come. I'm not saying they're taking it all but it's nice to be back in the mix.
Now that football season is about to get going I will definitely be more active. The Ravens have their first preseason game this week and I will try to break down some of the things I see in that game. I'll tell you what. In the past couple years I would have been all about football since the O's are usually out of it but this year I have been all baseball.
Please excuse any grammar or spelling errors as I'm typing this on my phone while I'm waiting for my wife at the park and ride.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Bounty Hunters!!!

Now when you think Bounty Hunting I know the first thing that comes to most peoples minds these days is the made famous by TV bounty hunter Duane "Dog" Chapman. I on the other hand and maybe this is because of the time I grew up think of a bounty hunter way more bad ass than "Dog". That's right the one and only Boba Fett from Star Wars.

I mean come on you look at this guy and you know he is just THE MAN! You see this guy coming, heck even if you even know he's looking for you, you're turning yourself in.

Alright this post isn't about that kind of bounty hunting. This is about the bounty system that was going on in New Orleans with the Saints and possibly wide spread throughout the NFL. A system that played players in accordance to a fee schedule depending on the severity of the injury. It has been sited that in this instance if you were a defensive player for the Saints and delivered a "Knock Out" you were payed $1000 and if the player you hit was carted off you were payed $1500. Heck the year the Saints won the Super Bowl it was reported that the "pool" amount reached $50,000! Look I love the NFL. I love the big hits. Are you kidding me when Hines Ward would cross the middle of the field and Jarrett Johnson or Ed Reed leveled him, you better believe I loved the hit. When Ben would drop back and Ngata or Suggs would plant a hit in his chest or back heck yeah I loved it.
Here's the difference in my personal opinion. As a defensive player your going to hit your opponent to hurt them. You're going to make them feel it and think twice about going over the middle of the field or run the ball at you. However there's a difference between hitting someone to hurt them and hitting someone to injury them. Let's look at the fullback for a second. There's a difference between him drilling a linebacker to open a hole for your running back and that same fullback hitting an offensive lineman in the knee when he's being blocked up high by someone else. One could make the argument that if someone is playing "clean" football and in a play legally hits another player and in that hit injuries him there's nothing wrong. I agree there is nothing wrong with that. What makes that situation and what happened during that play wrong is when you tie into it a bounty system that is going to pay and encourage injuring another player. One could even argue "Yeah but he didn't hit him with the intent to injury him. It was just circumstance." Well in my opinion if he went into that game knowing if he took someone out he would get rewarded financially that turns that "unfortunate circumstance" into something worse.
Look football is all about the big hits. I get it! I love it! I don't however feel that this needs to be a part of the game. I think it promotes injuring a guy in stead of hurting a guy. I think when you have this system in place you're no longer looking to knock a guy out of a game, but crossing that line to putting a guys livelihood, health, and even life in jeopardy.  I'm interested in how this whole thing is going to turn out and what else is unveiled in the process.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Orioles causing a stir in S. Korea and in fans...

So to catch you up in case you haven't been following the Orioles moves this offseason and any headlines they have been linked to. The Orioles signed 17 year old South Korean, Seong-Min Kim to a Minor League contract. So what's wrong with this you ask? Shouldn't be anything wrong with this. I mean the Orioles and all clubs sign guys right out of high school to play in the minors. In fact outside of the US, Canada and Puerto Rico players can be signed at the age of 16.  Well the problem is that the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) and the Korean Baseball Association are crying foul. Apparently they said that the process in dealing with Korean players is for the ball club to contact MLB and MLB will contact the KBO to negotiate with the player. The KBO filed a letter of protest against the Orioles with MLB and the Orioles have since apologized for the move. Strike one against the Orioles and no harm no foul right? Well the KBA has plans to ban O's scouts and Seong-Min Kim has been banned from ever playing South Korea again and also banned from ever coaching in South Korea as well. Now it looks as though MLB is going to void Kim's contract with the Orioles.
Now when I first started writing this I was a bit angry that MLB was voiding the contract and the KBO's over-reaction to all of this. That was stemming from my perspective as a fan, and now that I've taken some time to think it over it's the right thing to do. The Orioles and Duquette know the rules when contacting and signing foreign players. I mean come on as involved internationally as Duquette has been he definitely knew it was a no-no to do what he did. So it appears MLB will suspend the signing for 30 days by voiding the contract and the Orioles will also be fined by MLB. My only hope is that during that time Kim doesn't get signed by another team. Not because I think he is the next coming of Nolan Ryan, but because he has talent and can be a part of the rebuilding of our minor league system.

Spring training starts this weekend. This time every year I always feel like that guy who is so enamored with a hot girl that only comes around when she wants something. Once she has you following her like a puppy dog she leaves you broken and emotionally drained, but you know months down the road you see her again and fall right back into the trap. That's just what the Orioles do to all us fans. Every April they come back around wearing that appealing outfit saying "...but we've changed! See look at all the improvements we've made! Trust us we're moving forward and will get better." We fall for it every year, and every year we will continue to hang our heads when we're left watching all the other couples (teams/fans) go on to bigger and better things come October. Damn you Orioles!!! Yes even through all that you put us through we'll come back and defend all your flaws.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Am I Hearing You Right?

So I've heard a couple things lately that have had me shaking my head. First is the rumor that the Orioles could be interested in Manny Ramirez. All I have to say about this possibility is NO NO NO. I don't want Manny being Manny in Baltimore. Hearing what some of his former teammates had said we don't need him in our locker room and around our young guys. We need to build chemistry in our clubhouse and rally around each other and don't need him being a distraction. Not only that when and if he comes back he's immediately missing 50 games due to his previous suspension.

Second of all in regards to the Peyton Manning rumors. One place he could possibly land may be with the Redskins. So being surrounded by Skins fans I'm hearing majority of them saying they don't want him. Alright I can see this if you're getting and good young QB who is going to be your future but unless you get Luck or RG3 you'd be crazy to pass on him. Especially since last year you had 2 back up QB's fighting to be a starter. You've got tol be kidding me if you're a Skins fan and you don't want Manning. Alright I'll add one stipulation in this whole conversation. IF he's healthy. If he is you've got to be crazy not to want him for a couple years. Heck if we didn't have Flacco I'd be hoping that we got him, but who am I. I am happy to see that since I started writing this I just saw on twitter that Duquette has come out and said its doubtful Ramirez is an Oriole this year.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Orioles Approaching Spring Training

So with the pitchers and catchers about to hit the field down in Florida to start the spring training there hasn't been huge signings so far. I mean the Orioles watched as the Angels, Marlins, and Rangers threw money around like they hit the PowerBall jackpot. In my honest opinion I think the O's are doing the right thing. Would I have liked to see the likes of a Prince Fielder wearing the cartoon bird on his hat and Baltimore scrolled across his chest? HECK YEAH! I also thought this was the year to pull off such a deal because of the fact that the Red Sox and the Evil Empire (Yankees) have their first basemen in place. So you're not competing against the big spenders of the league. So again would I have liked to see one of those big names come to Baltimore? Yes, BUT we have much bigger things to take care of in Baltimore and this organization. For the longest time now we have had the need to boost our minor league system. You can buy all the big names you want but those big names are in their prime and are on a clock before they are done. When that happens you need to have someone coming up behind them. Heck even the Yankees and Red Sox who buy their bats still have guys in their system that can take over in the future. I know he isn't making huge deals but I'm liking what Dan Duquette is doing. We are getting more involved in the international market which we as an organization is late to the party. Every other organization had vamped up their international scouting years ago and the ones who have been winning have tapped into the Dominican and a few from the Asia market. So I'm glad we are finally getting more involved.
The guys we have been signing are guys that have upside to them and improves areas that we were weak in last year. Last year our pitching staff had control issues. They couldn't get deep into games and our bullpen was over used.  Duquette is looking at certain stats where we were weak and getting guys who can improve those areas. In addition the guys who don't stick in the majors this year give us depth in our minors, and depth that is better than what we have down on the farm.
I'm excited about the future of this club. It's just going to be another down year as far as standing though.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Goodbye 2011-2012 NFL Season

Well with the Ravens not in the big game I got the outcome I was hoping for with the Giants winning. There was just no way I was going to pull for the Patriots. Not only because they beat us but I'm just tired of the Patriots winning and Brady and Belichick this and that.
Speaking of the Ravens I didn't have a chance to post anything between our loss and the SB mostly due to personal life scheduling and honestly I had to take some time to get over the dropped passes and whatever you call that poor excuse of a kick. Unlike most in Baltimore though I'm not putting this loss on Cundiff and his botched field goal kick  There were dropped passes by Dickson, an inexcusable false start by Dickson and many other factors that lead up to that loss. Anyway before I start to get worked up again I'm just going to leave it alone and move on. The offseason will be starting up before we know it and it will provide us with plenty to talk about. Now we move on to the rest of the NHL season and MLB which is quickly approaching. So I'm going to switch gears now and get into baseball mode. So long 2011 NFL season you weren't very pleasant to us here in Bmore this year but when has the NFL ever been good to us. My fault it wasn't the NFL that has a history of hating on Baltimore mainly Paul Tagliabue. I will close this post with just one question for Mr. Taglibue. Do you still believe Jacksonville was a better fit than Baltimore for an NFL team or should we stick to what you thought we did best "build museums"? I think you'll find your answer in comparing the two attendance records there Pauley boy.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Conference Championship Weekend

So last week I went 3-1 and should have gone with my gut feeling that NY was going to take down GB. I was really happy with how things turned out last week.

Looking at the Ravens game I know a lot of attention has been turned on how bad our offense looked. In addition to that Flacco has taken a TON of criticism this past week. Heck he has taken flak all season. Look Flacco is a good QB, has he been inconsistent this season? Yes. All QB's have had a down season. With that said he has still quarterbacked this team into the playoffs 4 straight years and for 2 of those years we were 1 game away from the superbowl. I'll definitely take that over what we had before. We were never getting that from Boller or the should have been retired McNair. Look at the film from this past game in Houston and if anyone should get the criticism our O line and receivers should get some of that heat. Houstons front 4 pushed through our line like it was nothing. To the point we had linemen knees bent hands up to block and the guys they went to block already had Flacco on the ground. They need to step up this week. Again looking back at the film our receivers had NO separation from Houstons defenders so Flacco had to throw in other places to try and make a play. I for one am not putting everything on Flacco's shoulder's for the lack of production last week or for the season in whole. The receivers have had their share of drops this season. I also want to add that the Ravens struggles last week are also contributed to the fact that they played a very good Texans team and nothing should be taken away from their performance. In fact if they had Schaub we probably wouldn't be talking about the Ravens/Patriots game.

Now looking forward to this weeks games:

Ravens @ NE

  • Comparing the 2 teams.
    • QB: NE gets the advantage with Brady being the more polished and talented QB
    • RB: Baltimore with both Rice and Williams have the better backfield
    • O Line: Ravens right side struggled last week. I'm going to say they're even with Baltimore having a very slight edge. Both QB's have been sacked 31 times this year.
    • TE: Both teams have 2 very capable TE's a piece, although the Patriots TE's have been used more and are bigger threats. Edge goes to the Patriots
    • WR: As it stands right now I'm giving the edge to the Patriots. If Lee Evans was producing I would say it's a push, but he hasn't given anything so far. He had an amazing catch last game so here's hoping he does something this week. Patriots have Branch, Welker, and Edelman while the Ravens have Boldin, Smith, and Evans
    • Offense as a whole: You have to say that the Patriots and their pass game get the edge but the Ravens threat with the running game keeps the 2 close
    • Defense: I'm just going to save time and say that the Ravens not only have the edge when it comes to defense but it's not even close. The talent and production the Ravens defense lines up with is something that is not comparable when you look at the Patriots D which is ranked 31st out of 32 teams against the pass this season.
  • Another note with the Patriots D and it's something I have heard from a lot of Patriot fans on their local sports station was that they have given up a lot of yards but only average 17 points a game. Now you can say yeah that stat is a little skewed but you give a team like the Ravens and they will move the ball enough in the air and on the ground to eat up game clock. Doing that you're keeping Brady and their offense off the field. Want to see an example of this? Look at what the Steelers did to them earlier this year. That's what I expect to see this Sunday with the Ravens.
  • Ravens will eat up game clock and will keep the Patriots offense off the field enough to not be a factor. You look at Brady's stats against the Ravens defense and there is no other team that has played worst against than our very own Ravens.
  • Ravens win and move on to "Festivus Maximus" winning 24-20
  • Let me add here because it appears weather may be moving into the area this weekend up in Mass. If that's the case I am definitely giving the Ravens and their running game the edge.
  • I can't wait to see this game as well. 2 great games this week.
  • SF's QB Smith had a great game last week but there's no sense in getting carried away and start comparing him to the likes of Brady, Manning, Brees, and Rodgers. He had a good game but he needs more than one game like he just had to make me think he's anything other than a game managing QB.
  • Weather also may play a factor here as rain is predicted. Which may favor the 49ers and their run game.
  • Manning has been playing great for the Giants and has proven in my opinion that he is one of the top QB's in the league. Up there close to his brother.
  • Giants defense now that they are healthy are playing great and are right there with the 49ers and their defense.
  • Since both have great D's I'm giving the edge to the better QB in the Giants. Again if it rains that could change if the 49ers have success running the ball.
  • Giants win 20-16 setting up a rematch of the Ravens first SB trip.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Division Round NFL Picks

This has got to be the best time of the year. NFL playoffs are in full swing and MLB trades, signings, etc are going on. Not that the Orioles are doing anything other than sign Minor League talent. The only thing that would make this time of year better in the sports world would have been if the NBA was still locked out.

Let's look at the games this week.

Denver @ NE

  • Denver was surprising last week but Pittsburgh has been beat up all season and it continued last week losing Hampton and Keisel. A healthy Steelers team takes this Bronco team down, but any given Sunday right?
  • Usually I wouldn't even hesitate to pick the Patriots but their Defense is just not the Patriots Defense of years past. Not only with the amount of yards they allow but the amount of 3rd down conversions allowed isn't good at all.  Anytime you don't shut down drives and get off the field any team has a chance to take you down.
  • With that said I just don't see Denver moving past the Patriots. I think NE will give up yards and even somewhere around 21 points, but Brady and that Offense should put up more.
  • NE wins 34-21
Houston @ Baltimore
  • This will be Houston's second trip to Charm City this season and I'm afraid to inform Houston fans this one is going to end the same way. With the Texans flying back to Texas with their heads hung low.
  • Cincy went into Houston last week and showed they were a young Defense. They weren't disciplined at all against the Texans Zone blocking scheme they use with their run game. It's similar to what the Ravens use when handing off to Ray Rice and he racked up 191 yards on the ground against the Bengals in the last regular season game.
  • Baltimore will be more disciplined against the run as they have the veteran presence to do so.
  • When these teams met last time Houston didn't have receiver Andre Johnson or LB Mario Williams.
  • If Schaub was playing I would be a little more worried about their offensive attack. However with this being the Texans first playoff trip EVER and going with 3rd string QB TJ Yates I think the Ravens D will give him trouble.
  • Last game Baltimore held Foster to only 49 yards on the ground.
  • Baltimore WINS 24-17
  • This time around the G men have their main guys on defense healthy and starting.
  • Last game in NY the Packers won with a FG with :58 seconds on the clock.
  • This time around I'm thinking it's going to be close again and REALLY want to pick the Giants. I want to and am tempted to but I'm going with GB 27-24. I hope I'm wrong though.
  • NO hasn't played well outside of the Bayou. On the road they have struggled and even went to StL and lost to the Rams and that was in a dome. Which the Saints thrive in.
  • SF has the defense but their Offense isn't anything to write home about.
  • However I like SF 21-19
I know I didn't go into much depth with the NFC games. Can't help it the AFC is going to take it all this year anyway.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Wild, Wild Card Round

Alright let me start by saying how disappointed I am that I missed every single game this past weekend. We moved and Directv gave us some incorrect info and we didn't have tv until Wednesday.  I had to follow the Steelers game on my phone which pretty much was watching little arrows move across my screen. Speaking of the Steelers game that was the only game that threw me off this past weekend.

Here's a quick look at my picks from last weekend:

Houston over Cincy     CORRECT
Pitt over Denver     WRONG
NO over Detroit     CORRECT
NYG over Atlanta     CORRECT

Looking ahead to this weeks games, I'm pretty excited to see what transpires.  Some pretty good match-up's this week. Coming up I'll give my insight on those games so keep an eye out.

Houston is coming to Bmore and I'm pretty excited how the path to Indy is working out for the Ravens.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Still here...and maybe some picks too...

Alright so I missed last weeks picks. It's been crazy running around with all the Holiday stuff for Chirstmas and new Years. Which by the way I wasn't able to celebrate New Years this year due to having strep throat and getting hit with a high fever around 9pm NYE. Great way to ring in the new year, sleeping. Then you throw in us getting prepared for moving back into our old house this weekend. With this economy and our old house not selling as fast as we thought it would have we have to move back. I mean who would have thought that a nice house fairly new listed way under other comparable homes on the market wouldn't move in 2+ years. Oh well, let's see what the new year brings. Maybe a buyer? Hopefully.

Anyway with everything going on I couldn't get things together in order to pick games. So I just sat back and watched as the Ravens did Bmore proud and brought home the # 2 spot in the AFC and the Division title. Looking back I really wish we had our act together and won the games we should have on the road, but we didn't fair too badly coming in 2nd in the conference, sweeping our division for the first time in team history, and our 3rd Division title. I can't tell how relieved I am that we have a bye week and home game to start our SB run. Looking over the roster and who is practicing so far this week I'm really liking what may unfold this year. Those that were injured and missed the last game of the season are on the field practicing and we are going into our first game in the playoff's totally healthy. Alright well as healthy as a team can be after playing an entire season. you still have some guys with nagging injuries to toes and such but nothing keeping anyone off the field. More importantly nothing keeping any of our starters off the field.

While we're at it let's look at this week's games shall we.

Cincy @ Houston

  • The last time the Texans have won was almost a month ago against the Bengals. Since then they have lost to the Panthers, Colts, and Titans.
  • The Bengals since that loss to the Texans have gone 2-1. The loss came last week to the Ravens. The 2 wins came against the Rams and Cardinals, so take that for whatever.
  • I think due to injuries the Bengals look to have the advantage here. Although with another week of practice can Delhomme put together a good game? If Yates is playing he's seen this Bengals team once.
  • One thing that made me shake my head was hearing that knowing Houston is closing the roof this week, Cincy is still practicing outside. Wouldn't be a big deal other than it was in the 30's and you'd rather have your guys out in the cold rather than prepare for the environment you're going into? Univ of Cincy isn't far and you have the ability to use their bubble for $5000 and use choose not too and have your guys freeze. That's cheap! Even Dan Snyder wouldn't have his guys inside.
  • Close game but I'm going Houston squeaking by and heading to Baltimore in the Division round.

Pittsburgh @ Denver
  • Want to know what my hope is here? I don't have to I'm sure you already know.
  • Both are beat up and in key areas on both sides
  • Ben's hobbling around which is also affecting his downfield passes.
  • Flip side of that Tebow can get the ball downfield but the problem is you NEVER know where it's going. Is it going to hit the receiver in stride or the guy in the third row back holding up some goofy sign just to get on TV?
  • As much as I'd like to pick the Broncos because that's my hope. I just can't. The Steelers are the better team even with a gimpy Ben. Which by the way I not of the same mind set as many opinions I've heard that they are better with Ben even if he's at 50%. Really? Batch is no where close to a 50% Roethlisbeger? Why is he on the team?

Detroit @ NO
  • The last time these 2 met NO won 31-17 in NO
  • Something I found interesting was these 2 teams have never met in the playoffs. In 44 years these 2 have never met in the post season. Although that's how long it's been since the Lions have had a winning season, alright sorry I couldn't resist.
  • Two teams I don't really care for. Nothing close to how I feel about the Steelers. Just when the 2 are mentioned it's more of a ehh, next.
  • I was pulling for Schwartz and the Lions early on. Especially since he's a Maryland guy, but after seeing a different side of him this season and the whole mess with Suh I've changed my view.
  • The Saints kinda wore out their welcome with me the year they won the SB. It may make me a terrible person but with them CONSTANTLY using the whole Katrina disaster to paint "them" (a sports team) in this heavenly portrait. Katrina was devastating, but plastering the 2 together EVERY second was too much. Sports are to be a release from tragedy and everyday crap. Focus on the game and that's it. Sorry just my opinion.
  • That aside I think NO is the better team and should win this week. NO has their running game going and combine that with their air attack they stay on top of the Lions

Atlanta @ NYG

  • Both teams scratched their way through the season and found themselves in the playoffs.
  • Weather shouldn't be brutal but you take any of those dome teams from the South and put them outside in January I'm always leery on picking the dome team to win.
  • Another game where 2 teams with a good deal of history have never met in the postseason.
  • I'm liking the Giants D and Eli controlling the Offense than I do the Falcons and Ryan.
  • Giants move on.