Does O's turnaround have Angelos' head spinning?

September 10, 2010|Peter Schmuck

News item: The Orioles won back-to-back series against the top two teams in the American League East, another sign that they might be only a couple of big acquisitions away from being a legitimate contender in baseball's toughest division.

My take: Meanwhile back at the Law Offices of Peter Angelos, the big boss is starting to wonder if the O's might be good enough just the way they are.

News item: Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome made one last big preseason switch this week, signing veteran receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh and trading receiver Mark Clayton to the St. Louis Rams.

My take: If Houshmandzadeh has a productive season, he's going to burn out the spell-check function in my laptop.

News item: Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo blew up at an official at halftime during the Mids' 17-14 loss to Maryland in the "Crab Bowl Classic" on Monday at M&T Bank Stadium.

My take: Hey, if your team came up empty four times inside the 5-yard line in a three-point game, you'd be crabby, too.

News item: Ray Lewis is featured in a new Old Spice commercial that ends with him flying into space on a giant Raven.

My take: Frankly, I'm not sure how effective it will be. My first inclination after watching it was to go out and buy a big ugly mechanical bird that can achieve orbital flight.

News item: Lewis and Rex Ryan exchanged verbal fusillades this week as the trash talk ramped up in the final days before the Ravens and Jets meet on "Monday Night Football."

My take: Talk really is cheap, but if you don't find Ryan to be a refreshing switch from your typical straight-laced NFL head coach, then you need to loosen up, too.

Bonus take: This should not be construed, however, as an endorsement of Ryan's R-rated vocabulary. Really, Rex, the English language does contain some adjectives that don't start with an "f."

News item: NFL players union chief DeMaurice Smith said this week that the players are hopeful of reaching agreement on a new labor contract with ownership by November.

My take: I'm probably nit-picking here, but he didn't say which year.

News item: The latest Sports Illustrated season-opening NFL power rankings have the New Orleans Saints and Ravens in the top two positions.

My take: And, mark my words, if the Ravens end up winning the Super Bowl, somebody at the trophy ceremony will say that "when this season started, nobody gave us a chance."

News item: Speculation remains heavy that the Heisman Trophy Trust will ask Reggie Bush to return his trophy because he was retroactively declared an ineligible player in 2005.

My take: This is a can of worms the Heisman people should keep closed. It may be apples and oranges, but taking away Bush's Heisman while letting O.J. Simpson keep his would do more to diminish the award than anything that happened off the field five years ago.

News item: The NFL is projecting another slight drop in average attendance this year, which is being blamed on the ability of fans to better replicate the stadium experience at home with the new generation of large-screen, high definition televisions.

My take: And, just maybe, the fact that the league has no qualms about raising ticket prices in the middle of the worst economic crisis in nearly a century. Bottom line: When you're attendance is expected to drop 1 percent, but your average ticket price has gone up 3.9 percent over the past year and you're television viewership continues to rise, I think you can hold the violins.

News item: New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady escaped injury in a "violent" car crash on Thursday morning, the same day he reportedly agreed to a four-year contract extension that will make him the highest-paid player in the NFL.

My take: Brady's unbelievably charmed life continues. If that were me, I'd be in a body cast for six months and The Sun would be reprinting Kevin Cowherd's I-hate-cats series in place of my column.

peter.schmuck@baltsun.com

Listen to Peter Schmuck on WBAL (1090 AM) at noon Fridays and Saturdays and with Brett Hollander on Tuesday and Thursday at six. Also, check out his blog "The Schmuck Stops Here" at http://www.baltimoresun.com/schmuckblog.

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