Machado's recovery going according to plan
Orioles third baseman Manny Machado is progressing favorably in his rehab from left knee surgery as the 21-year-old hopes to start running in the next few weeks with an eye on being ready at the start of the season.
Duquette: Orioles haven't made offer to Balfour
For the Orioles on Tuesday there was plenty of smoke, but no fire. Despite the frenzy of rumors in the morning involving the Orioles adding closer Grant Balfour, executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette confirmed there has been no formal offer extended to the free agent.
Showalter would like Roberts to return
Orioles manager Buck Showalter held court with the media Tuesday afternoon, speaking for nearly 30 minutes on a variety of topics, including his desire to bring back second baseman Brian Roberts.
McFarland could move from 'pen to rotation
T.J. McFarland, who was selected by the Orioles in last year's Rule 5 Draft and is coming off a successful winter ball stint, will attend the club's mini-camp in January and compete for a starting rotation spot this spring, manager Buck Showalter said Tuesday at the Winter Meetings.
Two Baltimore-area schools, Western School of Technology and Environmental Science in Baltimore County and Linthicum Elementary in Anne Arundel County, were among the six named state Blue Ribbon winners on Wednesday.
Perhaps the best part of blogging or the internet in general is the occasional discovery of something unexpected.Over on
Baltimore Reporter and Conservative Thoughts is a great and thought provoking article by Robert Farrow.I hope you will follow
this link and read this great post.
I love your blog
Once again - as happens so often - I have been positioned here on the living room couch, immersed in your blog. You are
better than Fox News.
Awards and Rankings:
Voted one of the best local blogs:
Baltimore Examiner: 2006
Voted Top 10 most influential blog in Maryland in 2007.
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Last week’s shock poll bringing Herman Cain into third place needed confirmation before we could be sure that Cain was a serious contender.
Two new polls of Florida Republicans by SurveyUSA for WFLA and by War Room Logistics seem to provide that confirmation and more: Both put Herman Cain in second in the key early primary state.
These are not national polls, so they aren’t directly comparable with the last four major national polls, three of which put Rick Perry first, and the fourth which put Perry in second behind Mitt Romney. But that fourth poll seemed to show Perry voters giving Cain another look, and these two bolster that theory.
Facts: SurveyUSA polled 500 likely GOP primary voters, mobile and landline users handled, MoE 4.5. WRL polled 1331 likely voters by phone, and the Republican-only subsample had a MoE of 4.2. The overall poll was weighted, but WRL tell me only the overall results were weighted, but not the Republican results.
In WRL polling of Florida, Herman Cain gains 18.8 points to land at 23.7%, in second behind Romney who gained 3.2 points to land at 28.2%. The big loser was Rick Perry, who fell off the map, losing 15.5% to fall to 9.1%, behind even Newt Gingrich’s 9.8%.
SurveyUSA gives the same top four. Romney leads at 27%, Cain follows at 25%, Perry falls way off to 13%, and Gingrich ends up at 6%.
Fascinating to me is the landline/mobile split in the SUSA poll. In a traditional poll, Romney would have led 34-22-14. But mobile users broke for Cain, giving him 20 to Romney’s 13 and Perry’s 11, which left the overall result so close. Romney’s remaining edge in the poll ends up being from “Moderate” voters, as “Very Conservative” and “Conservative” voters were about evenly split between Romney and Cain, but “Moderates” broke 34-19 for Romney.
Florida of course made headlines for Cain already when he won a straw poll there, but now we have two independent polls appearing to confirm a genuine swell of support for him there. The next national poll could be a critical moment for Rick Perry. If he is confirmed to be crashing nationally, he may have little time to recover, or be relegated to irrelevance like Tim Pawlenty and Michele Bachmann before him.
Maddeningly inconsistent Lions still control own destiny (The SportsXchange)
ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- The Detroit Lions still control their destiny in terms of winning the NFC North and earning at least one home playoff game. They have technically been in control of their own destiny since beating the Chicago Bears in Week 10 to reach a 6-3 record. But you would think a team truly in control would have secured the division title by now and not given away a home loss to Tampa Bay or found a way to blow fourth quarter leads in three of their last four games. If the Lions (7-6) can win their three remaining games, against the Baltimore Ravens on Monday, then the New York Giants and at the Minnesota Vikings, they will play their first home playoff game since 1993.
Bengals-Steelers Preview (The Associated Press)
The Cincinnati Bengals are on the cusp of something that hasn't happened in the team's 46-year history. The Bengals have a chance to earn a postseason berth for a third consecutive season - with a little help - when they face the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night. A win over the Steelers and a loss or tie by either Baltimore or Miami will put Cincinnati in the playoffs in three straight years for the first time. If it's the Ravens who lose or tie while the Bengals win, the AFC North title is theirs.
Ravens safety Matt Elam say Lions receiver Calvin Johnson is “pretty old” (Shutdown Corner)
Baltimore Ravens rookie safety Matt Elam is 22-years old, so the young man is going to make plenty mistakes.
Unfortunately, for Elam, he will have to live with a major slip-up against the Detroit Lions on Monday.
Elam was asked about Lions receiver Calvin Johnson on Wednesday, and at first, he said all the right things. He described Johnson as “big, fast, athletic, unstoppable, freak" during his conversation with ESPN.com. So far, so good.
Then Elam said something he might regret.
"He's pretty old, so I don't know how physical he'll be,'' Elam told ESPN.com. "He's a big guy, but he's older. I guess when they get older they're not going to be as physical, you know what I'm saying? We're going to have to be physical, make him uncomfortable."
Johnson is 28-years-old, which is definitely older than Elam. The rookie seemingly forget how important it is not give the NFL’s best receiver any additional motivation when your team faces the nearly impossible task of stopping Johnson.
The old man has 75 receptions for 1,348 yards and 12 touchdowns this season. Johnson has seven games of at least 100 receiving yards this season, including a 329-yard performance against Dallas.
Overall, Johnson has 9,184 receiving yards in 66 touchdowns in less than seven seasons.
Elam may not think Johnson is physical, but let’s see what he thinks after Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford throws a jump ball and the rookie is one of three defenders trying to break up that pass.
Megatron vs. a Mega-rookie?
Enjoy living with this mistake, Elam.
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Anwar S Richardson is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at NFLAnwar@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!
Lions shooting blanks on offense in 4th quarter (The Associated Press)
Detroit's potentially potent offense has been held scoreless in the fourth quarter in each of the Lions' last three losses. Detroit gave up the ball a total of five times in the final quarter of those three setbacks, losing leads and games against Philadelphia, Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh. ''It's tough to win football games when you turn the ball over,'' quarterback Matthew Stafford said Wednesday. We're doing everything that we can to correct it.'' If the Lions (7-6) don't want to blow their chance to win a division title for the first time in two decades, they'll need to fix their glaring weakness quickly, especially because Baltimore (7-6) is playing at Ford Field on Monday night.
Vikings' curious handling of Freeman leaves QB trio – and fans - in limbo (The SportsXchange)
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- With the Minnesota Vikings officially eliminated from the playoff chase at 3-9-1, the handling of No. 3 quarterback Josh Freeman becomes even more awkward for coach Leslie Frazier and aggravating for the team's fans over the final three weeks of the season. When Freeman was signed Oct. 6 and hurried into the starting lineup 14 days later against the host New York Giants on Monday Night Football, it was assumed that he and the 1-4 Vikings would have 11 weeks to get to know each other on the field in live game action to determine whether a long-term relationship would be beneficial to both sides. At 25, the same age as the struggling Christian Ponder, Freeman was believed to be the player the Vikings were targeting as the potential young franchise quarterback that Ponder has so clearly shown he's not. For the eighth consecutive game since Freeman made his one and only appearance as a Viking, Frazier announced that someone else will start at quarterback when the Vikings play the Eagles at Mall of America Field on Sunday.
Ravens S Elam on Calvin Johnson: 'He's pretty old' (The Associated Press)
Ravens safety Matt Elam nearly ran out of breath trying to come up with words to describe wide receiver Calvin Johnson, the main object of focus for Baltimore's defensive backfield Monday night in Detroit. ''Big, fast, athletic, unstoppable, freak,'' Elam said. Curiously, Elam went in another direction when asked how best to cover the 28-year-old Johnson, who's amassed a club-record 9,184 yards receiving and 67 touchdowns in less than seven years. ''He's pretty old, so I don't know how physical he'll be,'' Elam said.
Suggs hopes Detroit visit is better than last time (Comcast SportsNet Mid Atlantic)
Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs does not have fond memories of playing in Detroit. His last visit was 2005, when the Lions drubbed the Ravens, 35-17, and referee Mike Carey ejected Suggs from the game. Suggs made contact with Carey while protesting a penalty, and Carey said that Suggs, Bumped me with malice in his heart. Suggs was fined $15,000 and it was a wild game, in which the Ravens were called for 21 penalties, one short of tying an NFL record.
Flacco looks forward to throwing football indoors (Comcast SportsNet Mid Atlantic)
Joe Flacco has played in a snowstorm, torrential rain, frigid conditions, and windy conditions this season. So when someone mentioned the thought of playing indoors at Detroits Ford Field on Monday Night Football, Flacco smiled. I never make a big deal about playing outside, but every time you go into a dome and you start warming up, you realize how awesome it is to be able to throw the ball inside, Flacco said Wednesday. For the Ravens (7-6), taking care of business means continuing to win.