Mark Viviano: Hey, Ravens Fans! Let's Get Something StraightPlayoff excitement is pervasive in Baltimore again. The perennially powerful Ravens are in the Super Bowl tournament for a 4th straight year and there’s every reason to believe this is the year they capture the Lombardi Trophy.
Mark Viviano: Flacco On Great ExpectationsJoe Flacco knows how hard it is to earn a playoff berth in the NFL, but he’s not so sure that fans get it.
Mark Viviano: Fans Sacked By Training Camp MoveOn its surface, the Ravens' decision to abandon Westminster as a pre-season training site is cause for outrage by fans.
Mark Viviano: First Place RavensNotes and observations from my vantage point in the press box and the locker room after the Ravens' 31-24 win over Bengals.
BLOG: Showalter's Fix It PlanIn his second-last pre-game meeting with the media this season, O's manager Buck Showalter- when asked about changes for next season- said he is "confident we will be relentless in improving our chances." He also added a plan to hold "mini-camps" in Sarasota for all players, not just pitchers (allowing that rules within the players' union protects them from mandatory attendance).
BLOG: Great ZeusFor all of the meanness that Orlando Brown embodied on the field, I will always remember him as the gentleman he was away from the heat of competition.
BLOG: Showalter To Take Over As O's GM?On 105.7 The Fan on Saturday, as a guest of Michael Popovec, I opined to look out for the possibility that O's manager Buck Showalter could take over as the new architect of the franchise, becoming the general manager with Andy MacPhail moving on upon the expiration of his contract at the end of this season.
BLOG: Angry Birds, Ugly ResultsThere are no consolation prizes in Major League Baseball- there are winners and losers, period. Sadly, the Orioles have, once again, lapsed into becoming habitual losers in a season that's taken a familiar, nasty nosedive over the last month (21 defeats in the last 27 games heading into the All-Star break).
BLOG: Another Step Backwards?Orioles president Andy MacPhail declared the team had taken “a giant step backwards” when he fired Dave Trembley as manager just over a year ago.
BLOG: Arrieta Exhibit A--Dumb Stat Congratulations, Jake Arrieta, and thank you! Thank you for being credited with nine victories - a number that has baseball analysts talking about your victory total and asking the all-important question: What do you make of a guy with a 4.50 ERA who has as many victories as any of the top pitchers in the game? Answer: WINS for pitchers is one of the dumbest stats in baseball and it’s born out in the Arrieta case.
BLOG: Let's Talk About It---NFL Nightclub ViolenceI did a Google search of the following phrase: “NFL nightclub fight." The search produced page after page of accounts involving an all-star list of names that include Braylon Edwards, Jared Allen, Kenny Britt, Brandon Banks, Levi Jones, Pac Man Jones, Charles Grant, Matt Light, Bryant McKinney and many more.