News item: : The Orioles open a three-game interleague series against the Washington Nationals tonight at Camden Yards after an up-and-down road trip through Philadelphia and Miami.
My take: : I've got to believe that's the first time in recorded history that anyone had a better time in Philly than in South Florida.
News item: : The Orioles entered Thursday night's series finale against the Marlins tied for the best record among major league baseball's six last-place teams.
My take: : So they've got that going for them, which is nice.
News item: : The Washington Wizards traded away the No. 5 pick in the NBA draft in a package deal that got them quality perimeter shooters Mike Miller and Randy Foye.
My take: : That really screwed up my mock draft.
Bonus take: : Who am I kidding? I just took another look at my mock draft, and I didn't even get all the team names right.
News item: : The U.S. soccer team stunned Spain on Wednesday in South Africa and advanced to the final of the Confederations Cup on Sunday.
My take: : In another sign that soccer is finally taking hold in the United States, the victory was followed by a small riot outside Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Instant fact check: : No, not really.
News item: : It looks like Orioles pitcher Koji Uehara might have to miss another start, this time because of elbow fatigue.
My take: : I don't think the International Space Station is this high-maintenance.
News item: : Boston Red Sox fans packed into Nationals Park on Wednesday night, helping the Nationals set a single-game attendance record for the second time in the series.
My take: : Peter Angelos warned us about this. Now the Nats are even stealing our Red Sox fans.
News item: : The Phoenix Suns traded Shaquille O'Neal to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
My take: : Obviously, the Cavs feel having Shaq's massive presence under the basket will help LeBron James take them to the promised land next season. I think he'll just get in the way.
News item: : Manny Ramirez played in three games this week for the Los Angeles Dodgers' Triple-A club as he prepares to return to major league action July 3 after serving a 50-game suspension for violating baseball's steroid policy. His presence has given the Albuquerque Isotopes a big boost in attendance.
My take: : Am I the only one who finds it curious that players who test positive for illegal performance-enhancing substances are allowed to play in the minors during their suspensions?
Bonus take: : Probably not, but it wouldn't be Major League Baseball if it wasn't sending out mixed messages about steroids.
News item: : Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg said during a radio interview that he doesn't think Sammy Sosa belongs in the Hall of Fame.
My take: : Wouldn't it be a hoot if Sosa shot back that, finally, the two of them have something in common.
News item: : There have been at least two reports this week, citing unnamed sources, that Brett Favre has reached a contractual agreement with the Minnesota Vikings and will report to training camp, barring an unforeseen physical setback.
My take: : Well, unless you thought he was undergoing arm surgery so he could throw the ball around in another Wrangler Jeans commercial, this should not come as a major surprise.
News item: : The Nationals continue to resemble the 1962 New York Mets, at least in the win-loss department, and are on pace to challenge them for the most losses (120) by a major league team in the modern era.
My take: : I know this because I read Kevin Cowherd's column every chance I get.
Listen to Peter Schmuck weeknights at 6 on WBAL (1090 AM).