Friday
December 2
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Issue 2
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in 18 holes, woods looked like "the old Tiger" and "an old Tiger"


Well, for a while there on Thursday afternoon, Tiger Woods made us forget for a just a second that he was playing in a throw-away event in the Bahamas designed to give 18 of the best players in the world the chance to make a bunch of free holiday spending money at the Albany resort.

He looked like the Tiger of old, stalking the fairways of Augusta, Firestone, Torrey Pines or any of the other courses he dominated for 15 years on the PGA Tour.

That lasted about 90 minutes.

There for a little while on Thursday, Tiger was quieting his critics after dipping to four-under par through 8 holes. But a back nine stumble left Woods at 73 after round one of the Hero World Challenge.

Then the other Tiger showed up and he stumbled down the stretch to an opening round 73 in the event, finishing ahead of only one player, Justin Rose, who, like Woods, is nursing a bad back these days and learning how to play with the ailment.

Depending on which side of Team-Tiger you're on, you were either really excited about the opening nine holes or happy to see him fade down the stretch. It definitely was a tale of two nines for the 14-time major champion.

Woods looked so good early on that his former teacher, Hank Haney, went as far as to tell Sports Illustrated's Alan Shipnuck on Thursday afternoon that he thinks Woods will, in fact, not only win again, but win another major title.

Tiger looked that good on the opening nine holes on Thursday.

"Based on what I saw today, I say he wins more tournaments and one more major," Haney told Shipnuck. Few people in the world know Woods and his golf swing as well as Haney. He served as Tiger's instructor from 2004-2010.

I say, "not so quick there, Mr. Haney."

I'm a card-carrying member of the Tiger fan club, but let's not get carried away with one round of golf.

I will say, happily, that Tiger's golf swing looked awfully good on Thursday, particularly early on in the round. Forget about the score -- he was 4-under par at one point. His swing is what matters most. And his health matters, too. If Woods can stay healthy and repeat that swing he showed on Thursday at Albany, he might do some damage again.

But we don't know that after watching him play one round.

The "old Tiger" showed up on the front nine on Thursday. Woods was rifling drives down the middle of the fairway, stinging iron shots close to the flag, and rolling in a couple of putts along the way.

His much-discussed and -- he says -- improved short game was on full display in the opening holes on Thursday as well. He looked the part, again.

Then, just like that, he stubbed a chip on the 9th hole, fell back to 3-under par with a bogey, and never really recovered from there, making a pair of double bogeys on the inward nine including one at the 18th hole. He turned 69 into 73, basically.

And not that anyone cares, but since there is a tournament going on, I'd like to pass along that J.B. Holmes is leading the event at 8-under par.

Now, back to the reason why everyone in golf is paying attention this week.

Back to Tiger.

Shooting one-over par at Oakmont, Baltusrol or Augusta, even, wouldn't be out-of-this-world-bad. For any player on TOUR, that kind of score on a difficult course is more than acceptable. But a 73 at that pitch-and-putt place in the Bahamas is nothing to brag about.

But if you've been away from the game for 15 months, 73 should probably be considered pretty daggone good.

It stands to reason that Tiger will likely improve over the next three days as he gets his "playing legs" back and gains a little more physical energy and mental confidence. He isn't going to win the event, mind you, but if he can sprinkle in a couple of under par rounds, that should do wonders for Tiger moving forward.

Thursday was about what I expected. I figured we'd see some excellence and I figured we'd witness some down moments, too.

I'm not nearly as excited about his first round play as was Haney, his former instructor, but I liked enough of what I saw to continue to say what I've said about Woods for the last 3-4 years. "If he can get 100% healthy, he can win again."

He looked really healthy for nine holes on Thursday. Then not-so-healthy on the back nine.

But that health was his golf game, not his back.

If Tiger's back is better, so, too, will his golf game be better.


tiger poll results show mixed opinions


On Wednesday and Thursday of this week, #DMD ran a poll that asked you to predict where you thought Tiger would finish in this week's Hero World Challenge, his first competitive tournament since August of 2015.

Not surprisingly, most of you felt like Woods wouldn't fare too well. Through round one, at least, most of you are right.

Here are the results from the Tiger poll:

Around 15th place: 37%

Around 10th place: 30%

Dead last, 18th place: 15%

Top 5: 15%

He'll win: 3%

And, no, before you ask, I wasn't one of the ones who said Tiger would win.

My vote? Around 15th place. I predicted before Thursday that Woods would shoot 72-71-68-74 for a four day total of three under par.

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is the orioles ticket price news telling us anything about 2017?


The Orioles announced on Thursday that season ticket prices will not be increased for the 2017 season, as they delivered that news some eight weeks earlier than they did in 2016.

The Birds waited until the Chris Davis decision/signing was wrapped up in late January to start producing their ticket price information for the 2016 campaign, so yesterday's announcement comes nearly two months earlier than it did a year ago.

Is yesterday's Orioles ticket news an ominous sign that Mark Trumbo won't be back with the Birds in 2017?

What should we make of that?

Does this mean Mark Trumbo isn't an option in 2017? It would stand to reason Trumbo is going to garner somewhere in the neighborhood of $15 million a year after his superb season in 2016.

If the O's were going to take on that kind of contract, wouldn't it seem likely they'd be forced to tweak the ticket prices just a little bit to help cushion the blow of a $50 or $60 million deal?

Granted, Davis' deal last January was for $161 million and that required major "help" from the fan base, but wouldn't the same logic be used for a multi-year contract on Trumbo?

And what does yesterday's ticket price news say about the team's desire to sign any other high profile free agents this winter?

Oh, and that guy who plays third base, Manny Machado...isn't he about ready to sign perhaps the largest contract ever in baseball?

We can let this one play out over the next few months to get the real answers to those questions. Perhaps the Orioles got the news out early this year to create "holiday gift ideas" for their fan base, which seems both likely and smart.

Or, maybe they're just standing pat on both tickets and players this winter.

And saving up to give Machado his $350 million.

You should be saving up, too, of course. You're going to help pay for him.


high school hoops tournament features several high quality teams, players


The 2nd Annual Shirts vs Skins Basketball Classic kicks off tonight at 5 pm at St. Frances Academy, as three local schools (Mt. Zion Academy, St. Frances, Capitol Christian) are set to participate in the weekend tournament.

The tournament is an elite high school basketball showcase featuring top high school teams and players in the country and will be held on Friday and Saturday at St. Frances in Baltimore.

Many of the players participating are receiving offers from the likes of MD, Syracuse, Duke, Kentucky, UNC and others.

Today's schedule includes:

5 pm -- Putnam Science Academy (CT) vs. Mt Zion Academy (MD)

7 pm -- Cape Henry Collegiate (VA) vs. Capitol Christian (MD)

8:30 pm -- St Benedicts Prep (NJ) vs. St. Frances Academy (MD)

Saturday's play at St. Frances begins at 1 pm.

Not only is this event an elite high school basketball showcase, there is a community component that is attached relating to diabetes awareness and teaching the players how to speak in front of a camera, at a press conference or in public.

For full details on the tournament, visit their website: www.shirtsvsskins.org. Tickets for the games this weekend can be purchased at the door.

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this weekend in
english soccer


Contributed by #DMD's English Premier League Reporter
MATTHEW CARROLL

Chelsea were able to do what Liverpool could not only the week before, maintaining their slight advantage at the top of the table to set up a top three matchup with Manchester City to kickoff Matchday 14 of the English Premier League. With second place Liverpool’s hope of staying in the title conversation taking a major blow with the news that midfielder and playmaker Phillipe Coutinho faces at least five weeks on the sidelines with ankle ligament damage, will the Blues be able to put some distance between themselves and the rest of the pack? Tune in to find out with all of the action available live on the NBC family of networks or online at NBC Live Extra.

Saturday, December 3rd (all times eastern)

7:30am – Chelsea @ Manchester City – Etihad Stadium, NBC Sports Network

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola (left) and Chelsea's Antonio Conte (right), whose square off at the Etihad Stadium this weekend with first place on the line in the EPL.

A brace from Sergio Aguero, which moved the Argentine international level as the league’s top goal scorer with Diego Costa - who was not on the score sheet this past weekend however it was his assist to a streaking Victor Moses that proved to be the difference as Chelsea continued their Stamford Bridge dominance over neighbors Tottenham 2-1 - overturned a surprise first half deficit and give Manchester City a come from behind 2-1 victory over a determined Burnley side and keep the Citizens only a point behind the Blues ahead of their trip to the Etihad Stadium in the weekend’s marquee matchup.

They will provide the stiffest test to date of Chelsea’s seven game winning streak, with the Blues winless in their last four league meetings against City (D2) and losers of six of the last eight league encounters at the Etihad Stadium (D1 L6). More importantly however could be that Pep Guardiola has the personnel at his disposal to match Chelsea manager Antonio Conte’s preferred back three formation, which has proved to be the tactical catalyst of their rise to the top of the table, if he so chooses to do so (we think he will) and that the Spaniard has deployed previously this seasons with devastating effect.

12:30pm – Arsenal @ West Ham United – London Stadium, NBC

A second half header from Theo Walcott bookended by a brace from Alexis Sanchez on either side of the halftime whistle, the second of which officially put the game to bed in the first minute of injury time, moved Arsenal past Bournemouth 3-1 as the Gunners kept a firm hold of fourth place. They will make the short trip across London for a Derby with West Ham United after the Hammers stabilized the ship somewhat following their heartbreaking defeat at Tottenham the week before, taking an early lead and then surviving a Manchester United onslaught to earn a share of the points in a 1-1 draw with the hosts.

It was almost a repeat performance to the week prior for the Hammers, and without the heroics of goalkeeper Darren Randolph it likely would have been, but they are sure to be happy with a point from the road as they continue to run the gauntlet of a four-game stretch against the league’s top sides that will continue this weekend with a visit from the Gunners, where they have lost seven of their last nine meetings at home (D2) and twelve of their last sixteen overall (W1 D3), before mercifully coming to end with a trip to the now undermanned Liverpool next weekend.

Sunday, December 4th (all times eastern)

11am – Manchester United @ Everton – Goodison Park, NBC Sports Network

While West Ham may be content with the point, the fourth draw in as many games at Old Trafford leaves Manchester United sitting in sixth place, eleven points behind Chelsea and eight off the top four, with their twenty-point haul from their opening thirteen fixtures marking their worst start to a season in the Premier League era. They will hope to turn that around when they travel to Goodison Park to take on Everton, who continued their recent stumbles when they were comfortably pushed aside by Southampton in manager Ronald Koeman’s return to the club he guided the previous two seasons 1-0.

With only one win to show for their last eight league outings (D4 L3), Everton have somewhat surprisingly been able to maintain their place in the top half of the table, although that could change without a result in Sunday’s matchup as four teams in the middle of the pack are nipping at their heels. Everton have lost four of their last five meetings with Manchester United across all competitions (W1) but have taken all three points in four of their last seven matches at Goodison Park (D2 L1) and will face a vulnerable United side who have managed just two wins now in their last ten league games (D3 L5).

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our holiday winter apparel drive will now officially be a "blast"


For those of you needing a little extra incentive to dig through those closets and storage spaces for your no-longer-worn winter apparel, we have it for you!

I'm excited to announce that the Baltimore Blast is joining with us as a partner in the 2016 "Winter Apparel Drive, presented by Jerry's Toyota".

Thanks to our friends at the Blast for partnering with #DMD for our holiday winter apparel drive! Bring us ten items of winter clothing and you'll get two free Blast tickets for their January 14th home game.

For those that might not know, my old radio pal Glenn Clark and I have been doing this for six years now, collecting winter apparel for men, women and children and donating it to the fine people at Helping Up Mission in downtown Baltimore.

This year, we have three public drop-off locations coming up in December, and we're thrilled to have the Blast joining us to help you "dig a little deeper" for that winter apparel.

Anyone bringing us ten (10) articles of winter clothing gets two free tickets to the January 14 Blast home game when they host the Harrisburg Heat at the Royal Farms Arena.

What's an "article" of winter clothing, you ask? Easy: Anything that can be worn in the winter. Coats, jackets, pullovers, sweatshirts, winter hats, gloves, socks, boots, shoes.

And please know this is NOT just restricted to men's clothing, even though it's going to be donated to Helping Up Mission, which is an "all male" facility.

Many of the guys use the women's or children's clothing for holiday gifts to their loved ones. It's a very touching scene down there to see men so excited about finding something to give to a family member or friend when they otherwise wouldn't have been able to do so on their own.

Your participation is so appreciated by them! And we'll be video taping it all and presenting it here for you at #DMD so you can see first-hand what it's like on December 20 (donation day) at Helping Up Mission.

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Our friends at Jerry's Toyota will once again serve as the title sponsor of our Winter Apparel Drive. Visit Jerry's Toyota at 8001 Belair Road from 3 pm to 6 pm on December 15 and donate ten items and receive two free Blast tickets!

Here are our three public drop-off dates where you can get the two free Blast tickets.

Tuesday, December 13, Glory Days Grill on East Joppa Road in Towson. 5 pm to 8 pm (free appetizers for those who come out that night!)

Thursday, December 15, Jerry's Toyota on Belair Road in Fullerton. 3 pm to 6 pm (free Royal Farms coffee for those who come out that night!)

Monday, December 19, Chick fil-A of Nottingham Square in White Marsh, 5 pm to 8 pm (a very special guest will join us that night...)

All we need now are your gently used pieces of winter clothing! Please take some time to go through your closets, dressers and storage spaces and give us what you no longer use. You will be making a big difference in someone's life this holiday season.

And...you'll be going to see the Baltimore Blast!!! Absolutely free!!!


#dmd comments


Ron Mexico from Blacksburg     December 02
Tiger's Wood made a series of poor choices, squandering the golden years of maybe the greatest PGA career ever. The boorish, dismissive and deceptive behavior he displayed through most of it make him easy to root against. I choose to watch and bash. Here's to hoping he makes it interesting this weekend only to get the yips when it really counts.




BJ     December 02
@Brien is not often right, and he is never concise with his words, but today he was both. There is very little correlation between ticket prices and player salaries, other than on a perceived basis (should any team feel the need to use that angle to "market" their prices, as BJ correctly points out)

Brien Jackson     December 02
They waited until after the Davis announcement to *market* their 2016 prices, yes.

Tom     December 02
Where are the Tiger bashers today? Crickets. 65 in round 2 for the greatest ever!

TA1988     December 02
Nice try Brien, but didn't the Orioles wait until after they signed Chris Davis last year to set their ticket prices for 2016?



Or was that another Orioles and a different Chris Davis?

Brien Jackson     December 02
I might expound on this later, but it's definitely time to retire the "you'll be paying for X player through higher ticket price" stuff. It was already pretty tenuous because pricing exists independent of expenditures (past the break-even point anyway), but it's more and more true as MLB diversifies revenue streams on a leaguewide basis. MLBAM, in particular, is a growing cash cow that doesn't show any signs of slowing down, and *conservative* estimates for leaguewide revenue growth project an additional $500-600 million annually for the league.

JROB     December 02
Who thinks Henrik Stenson will win another major? I do. Stenson is 3 months younger than Tiger. If Tiger can get healthy, he will win another major.

DR (the original)     December 02
As you say, Tiger has been away from the PGA Tour (and the Majors) for 15 months. But it's not like he was playing on the Web.com Tour, or spending hours and hours working on his game for a long time. These guys that are dominating out there now...I mean, they are so much better than he is.

I'm not saying that Jordan Spieth or Jason Day or Rory McIlroy, all of whom are Hall of Fame players, will ever really even approach the numbers and level of Tiger Woods. But I am saying that, from now until Woods stops playing, those guys are going to be better than he is. Probably by a lot.

Of course he can still win a tournament or shoot a 63 on a hard course or play four good rounds. I hope for golf's sake that he's healthy enough to play in the majors. Of course he's come back from injury (and other stuff) before, but he's never been this far behind when he's come back.

Davey     December 02
Any golfer in the top 200 can shoot 4-under over 8 holes at any given time. The test is being able to maintain that consistency over a full round and then over 4 rounds. That is what has been missing from Tiger's game for two years. Of course he has the talent to shoot 4-under thru 8. Everyone does. But every time he seems to be playing well, he suddenly sprays a tee shot 80 yards left and is then scrambling to make bogey. I hope he can find the fix. I want to watch him for another five years.

JROB     December 02
It has been an exciting 5 years or so for the Orioles, but the window to win has passed. Starting pitching is weak. The Davis signing was a poor choice. We are not signing Manny. Jones’ best years are behind him. We have good pieces in the bullpen that are attractive to other teams. We have a weak farm system. I suspect that the 2017 Orioles are much like the 2016 Yankees. Old, Slow, Injured, One-Dimensional. GM JROB prepares for the rebuild. The rebuild includes trading Manny, Davis (if you can find a taker) and the fine (but expensive and getting more expensive) bullpen pieces to get younger, faster, and positioned for another 5 year run. The Orioles are the kind of team that has to plan to on obtaining young talent and hoping they “get it” at the same time. Contending teams are willing to pay for bullpen arms at the deadline (see last year Yankees). The examples to follow are the Cubs, Astros, Royals, even the Rays. While I don’t expect GM Duquette to follow GM JROB’s advice, I think the team will be mediocre at best by the All Star Break in 2017 and the need for big changes will be apparent.

Chris     December 02
Prediction: Orioles let Trumbo sign elsewhere and then turn around and sign the recently released Chris Carter for half the money Trumbo signs for. Over the last 4 years, Carter's stats are equivalent to Trumbos (HR, RBI, OPS, age 30). Downside is Carter will strike out 200+ times. Still may be a good fit for the rock 'em sock 'em Orioles.

Chris     December 02
Right on cue. First there's Monk. Then 10 minutes later Monk comes back as Cheap Seats and applauds Monk.

unitastoberry     December 02
I predict Os attendance will rise this year. As long as the civil unrest does not return. It took many years after the 68 riots too but it did eventually come back. Of course a competitive team would help things too. Manny and company wetting the bed in September is not helping either.

Cheap Seats     December 02
Thanks MONK, always on point...well, ok, not always, but most of the time ;)

Pat     December 02
Monk, you should be familiar with pot shots. Every time you comment here you take several. Unless it's been edited, where are the so called pot shots in today's Orioles column? In fact I see where the writer (Drew I assume?) says standing part is "smart". Or am I missing something?




monk     December 02
Never a day goes by when the shots at the O's are not taken. Either the slamming of Buck for his non use of Britton[that is a non-starter, as he could have been blasted at any point from the 5th inning on IF they had lost the game, which they seemed destined to do with the lack of offense, Buck made the decision to USE him if and when they got the lead, which they never did, therefore his decisions were based on an occurrence that never materialized AND was subject to second guessing for "non-use" for innings if the Jays had scored in that time].



Why not state the obvious?. The ticket price was built in for two years and has nothing to do with "moves" being considered. I would tend to think that "market" had a great influence. Why raise the price when you had difficulties selling last year? Even if DMD likes to take potshots[a clear hangover from the Radio Station days], a fair balance is never attained.

I would think that a different approach is needed. The sales team needs to be freshened up and new paths tried. Advertising on their own network and a few radio spots, with billboards isn't enough. Maybe they need the former employer on the payroll. He is good at selling...after all he is still in business.....heard an interview with a guy who was born in Cuba and his family fled Castro...but the Little Fella talked over him constantly and KNEW MORE about the situation than the expert, it was amazing in its lack of sensitivity.

Ron Mexico from Blacksburg     December 01
Glad I didn't call my bookie today and put a dime on Tiger's Wood. 73 with two double bogey's on the back nine would have cost Christmas money plus juice.

Steve from Vero Beach     December 01
My money is on Catfish Hunter to win that one game !!!

Chris     December 01
When evaluating the pitcher you want in a must win situation, I think it is necessary to try to measure a pitcher's ability to come up big in a pressure situation. While Pedro and Randy Johnson are great pitchers, a comparison of their lifetime regular season vs post-season stats (ERA, WHIP, HR/9, SO/BB) indicates they perform worse in the post-season. RHP John Smoltz (closely followed by, gulp, Andy Pettitte) and LHP Sandy Koufax show the opposite trend.



I'll take those two as they showed the ability to handle the pressure and deliver clutch performances.

Tom T     December 01
Monk -- Where in the football would you put the chip? Front, back, or middle? And on a close play that was just short, how would you know whether a part of the ball not having the chip made it across the line? I suppose you could put chips at either end of the ball, but then arises the problem of hackers.

mike from catonsville     December 01
It depends on the era. I agree with Delray Rick, Koufax but also Bob Gibson and Juan Marichal. Guys who could throw innings and not worry about pitch counts. Todays pitchers aren't in the same class.



BTW, has any official been given more air time then Gene Steratore. He did the Ravens game not to long ago then the Maryland basketball game and then the UNC/Indiana game last night and will be back on the football field Sunday. It's bothersome to a point when refs get all of that TV time and become a "personality. Like the old days when Dick Papairo and Hank Nichols did just about every big college basketball game or so it seemed. And then Tim Higgins, as bad as he was started getting all of the big games. Something says refs should NOT be the "name in the room". It just doesn't pass the smell test. They are NOT bigger than the game.

HERMAN     December 01
It would appear that only "Old Tom Morris" won 4 or more majors after the age of 40, and I don't think he faced the level of competition that Tiger will moving forward. Tiger will bring added intrigue and excitement back to the game, and I'm sure he will show flashes of brilliance, but he will never catch Jack's 18, that ship sailed when the air of invincibility crashed into a fire hydrant.

Paul     December 01
LOL at this one from Drew!



I was hoping they'd pass a rule change that says in the Wild Card game, if it goes to extra innings, you must use your best pitcher at some point before the expiration of the 12th inning.

Monk     December 01
The odd thing about the 1st down call in the OSU/Mich game is that there is technology to "get it right". A chip could be installed and other things can make almost every call in sports pretty certain. A strike zone in baseball "fit" to every batter, ball tracker devices and Hi-Def cameras COULD be instituted at SUBSTANTIAL costs. Likely costs are prohibitive in getting everything "right" So what we have now is an attempt to use some technology but not all technology and they get lots of things WRONG.



Add this ....the Rules for determining when and what kind of play can be reviewed is about the biggest joke ever. A perfect example is the Steve Smith penalty in his idiotic shoving match with super idiot Burfict. A simple replay that was shown almost immediately PROVED that both guys should have been penalized....but that can't be reviewed? All of the leagues EITHER better go ALL IN in getting it right OR just let the refs call it as they see it.........and have people still get just as upset as the aggrieved Michigan fans.



Common sense replays need to be upgraded or ditched. I find it incredible that the NFL system is the most insane and wrong headed approach. The crew chief under the hood? Mind blowingly stupid. The exact opposite of what should be done. Quick and fast and move on...UNLESS it increasingly difficult play[then go to a timeout]. Just like at the horse races in the old days. They used to wait until all the jockeys had been weighed in after the race.....and checked in the with patrol judges. It used to take about 8 minutes to have them call the race official. Nowadays it is quick.......and only goes longer when there is an infraction OR they need to "PRINT" the win photo.



These replays that OFTEN solve nothing and sometimes are dead wrong by the guy under the hood....it needs to be blown up. I am almost certain that Perriman did not get down the end of one cleat in that Redskin game. But there was no ground level view of it.......and the ref "guessed" that he didn't. It was called a TD and was reversed. That was the difference in the game.......and THEY may have gotten it WRONG. A terrible system.



Rose is a creep. He got what he deserved and AGREED to. He signed off on the lifetime ban. The Dowd report was telling.....and guys on the Reds[and many of his contemporaries] knew that Pete bet on baseball while he was a player. Dowd's investigation led him to believe that he was 100 percent sure that Rose bet on the Reds to win....and 99 percent sure that he bet against them as well. I wrote to Fox Sports and let them know of my anger in his use this post season. He sucks at that as well. I also have heard some stories about his awful handicapping on horses. He could only HIT and was lousy at that rest of life.

DELRAY RICK     December 01
@DREW---You not being old enough, KOUFAX, the best i ever saw. RANDY probably second. Forget the catch, how bout the missed field goal. ROSE will get in HOF when he is dead, just like several others.

James - Dundalk     December 01
On most National TV games they have the overhead Camera on a wire. Why not utilize this Tech at every game to get an overhead look the field to determine field position ( ball placement)/ sideline/end zone infractions

Jack     December 01
Agree with you Drew on Ohio State, Johnson, Evans and Rose.



But in his heyday I would take Clemens over Pedro.



Fun issue today.

Rob Really     December 01
If you win the ALCS or the NLCS, then you are by definition, the "pennant winner" for your league. It doesn't matter if you were a wild card team, you won your league title and the pennant. The two pennant winners play in the World Series. Eazy, peazy...

unitastoberry     December 01
Chris Hoiles did good at the plate vs Randy Johnson even in the postseason.

I have a friend in sales in Buffalo huge Bills fan. The day we signed Lee Evans he called me up and said ...Mark my word this guy will break your heart at some point in time.

AB     November 30
Tiger with a 70 today in the pro am. Made two eagles. People are starting to whisper that maybe he really is healthy now.

Tom J     November 30
Drew, love the "Cheap Shots" article. Please make this a regular feature. Also love Fact and Opinion as well as "Ask Me 10 Questions" ......One more, I love reading old Blast stories as that was a huge part of my life back at that time. Haven't seen any of those for a while, can you post some more of them like you were doing? Thanks!!!

Jason M     November 30
I remember Eric Dickerson was pretty bitter when Jamal was chasing his record. It struck me that there's a classy way to handle someone chasing your record, and Dickerson wasn't on board with that approach.

unitastoberry     November 30
Not a Penn St fan but I do live in PA originally from Balmer, Everyone up here is talking about the team and this young QB. The light bulb came on for this guy in October he's a small QB only 6 ft but I would would look at the position coaches on this team especially the o line coach cause they sucked in September.

David     November 30
This >>>>>> I recited the Pledge of Allegience every morning after "Raised on the Radio" because, well, I'm an American and we used to do that in grade school and, back when people were saying the Pledge every morning and believing in the flag and saying "under God", the world seemed like a much better place to me.



Thank you, Drew.



From a longtime listener.

Steve from Vero Beach     November 30
Question you left out of the poll, WHO CARES ANYMORE !!! And it's always and only about the MONEY !!!

HERMAN     November 29
@Cheap Seats



I was serious. I guess it could be to block for the tight end going out on the right side. Or there could be some other play design reasons. I don't know, I was asking. It seems to make no sense to me, but maybe in play design there is a perfectly good explanation. I was looking for someone to explain it to me for real.

Same with every team playing the Patriots. They put regular linebackers on Edelman, and have one covering the back in case he goes out into the flat. It always ends up a complete mismatch. Edelman or their other fast slot guy torches the slower linebacker. Or the quicker back from the backfield gets three yards on the clunky linebacker and it's a game changing first down on fourth and 3.

Why, when playing the Patriots, don't teams flood the field with faster D backs and pull some slow linebackers out. Put a D back on Edelman or Amendola, play unconventionally. I watched the Jets game and the linebackers couldn't get close to the slot guy or the back coming from the backfield. They had no chance playing a linebacker on them. I don't get it. It's like designed failure to play the conventional linebacker set against them. explain it to me, lucy....

Cheap Seats     November 29
@Herman Marty does it just to annoy you. ;)

HERMAN     November 29
Can someone here explain something to me? It's 3RD and long, the pressure has been coming all game long from the blind side because the rookie is shaky, we line up in the shot gun and the half back is on Flacco's right side. Why? Why wouldn't we put him to the left as "help" where the pressure is breaking down every must throw down? I watch them line up, I know the blind side is gonna be the weak link, and there's the half back, over on the right side. Blind side gets looped, Flacco goes down, punt team comes on.

Makes me nuts. Is there some reason we can't put the half back to the left so we could have time to throw on the 3RD down and long plays?

James     November 29
Hey Drew, any thoughts on Tiger's return this week? Was hoping to read some commentary on it. I know it isn't a big event but it's still worth covering.

JROB     November 29
JROB says Ravens have a better chance of going 7-9 than 9-7. I'll settle on 8-8 as they will figure out a way to lose to at least one to Miami, Philadelphia, Cincinnati. Pittsburgh goes 10-6. They will win either the Giants or Bills game (or both).



This team just doesn't have it. I'll bet on Pittsburgh figuring out ways to outscore their competition over the Ravens outscoring theirs.

HERMAN     November 29
week-to-week we look more like one of the middling 8-8 teams than one that can squeak into the playoffs and do any damage. We just don't look like a playoff caliber team. Struggling to put more than one TD per game on the board doesn't portend a deep playoff run. And this isn't the D from 2000, Cincy was driving for OT when we got the strip sack, and we've lost at least 2 this year we were leading late. Your scenario is plausible, but there is certainly some rose tint to the glasses you're wearing.

DR (the original)     November 29
Because of the game in Foxboro, there's a lot better chance of Pittsburgh being 9-5 than the Ravens being 9-5 heading into the Christmas game. But if I were to bet on it, I'd bet that both teams are 8-6, which would be a fun game...as much as any game involving the Ravens has been fun...

Chris     November 29
Really good insight on what the Ravens and Steelers face down the stretch. This is a packed edition of DMD. Good work.

Chris K     November 29
The Ravens will win the division IF they can keep jimmy smith on the field for all or at least 4 of the 5 remaining games. While they're defense has been superb overall, the secondary is a little lacking when he's not in there. I really like tavon young as the second corner and especially like him covering in the slot. In fact I am really looking forward to seeing how he handles Edelman when they play New England. However, when Smith isn't playing and wright is playing more than he should, the pass defense is suspect. I still wish we could've seen him in the Dallas game. I'm not saying they would definitely win, but I do think he would've slowed Dez Bryant down a little and it would've been a 4-7 point game either way. So in conclusion, if Smith is healthy and playing, they'll win the North. If he's not out there consistently, they will just miss out.



Regardless, you're right about one thing Drew. This season has been tremendously more fun to watch than last season.

DELRAY RICK     November 29
Defence getting like the old days. Great defence no offence. IF we can get better DB'S , look out. RAVENS have 2 "SUGGS,ELVIS, that nearing a great . Who is their replacements? Think they will draft a QB.Just thinking.

unitastoberry     November 29
I guess if you make it to the post season anything can happen?We would be the underdog for sure with no pressure on us. We can hang with the big boys but not for the whole game and some of that is due to poor game plans by the coaches not just lack of talent.

Kenny g     November 28
Houston was not going to sign Tom Hermann long term anyway. They used him just as much as they tried to impress the Big12 for expansion. Houston was already spending money it did not have.



This year disappointments? Add Notre Dame, UCLA, Oregon to the list.

Confucius     November 28
Empty seats? Guess Baltimore fans choking again, just like they did with the O's down the stretch...

BJ     November 28
Certainly Harbs knows that rule, they essentially ran the same play at the end of the SB vs Niners.

Ray Ray     November 28
To that part of Brien that wonders if Harbaugh knew the safety rule - of course he did. Every team coaches players to hold in that situation. It's Take A Safety To End The Game Strategy 101.

Thursday
December 1
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Issue 1
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tough questions – easy answers


The almost-first-down-that-was gift-wrapped-to-Ohio-State last Saturday got me to thinking about something.

How many “sports issues” are there that need an answer? And, by that, I mean, “the” answer. As in – the right answer.

Like that one from last Saturday’s game between Ohio State and Michigan. In overtime, facing a 4th and 1 in a “make a first down or go home” situation, the Buckeyes were given a first down by the width of a hair, I’d say.

In other words, here’s the question: “Did Ohio State really make a first down there or were they stopped and should Michigan have won?”

Easy answer: Ohio State didn’t make that first down. They got a wonderful home-cooked meal from the refs there. One that might have cost Michigan a shot at playing in the NCAA title game in January.

So, you get the idea, right?

Well, you’ll find three more “sports issues” below that all have a question attached to them and I’ll go ahead and give you the answer.


One game, one pitcher. Who do you take?

So here’s the scenario. You have one baseball game to win. You can pick any pitcher you want to start that game for you. In fairness, because you’d want to know the opposing lineup, perhaps, before making your pick, let’s just make it easy. You get to pick one right handed starter and one left handed starter.

One game? Winner take all? Pedro Martinez is the selection here.

Right handed starter: At his peak, during that 4-5 year run where he was absolutely at his most dominant performance level, no pitcher that I’ve ever seen was better than Pedro Martinez.

I’ve seen a lot of great right handed pitchers. I saw the end of Jim Palmer’s terrific career. I saw Tom Seaver. Greg Maddux, Roger Clemens, Roy Halladay. Those guys were all terrific. None, at THEIR peak, were as good as Pedro was at HIS peak.

And Martinez, remember, was wheeling and dealing at the height of the steroid era. So were others, too, but Pedro’s numbers were better than all of them.

One game? And you’re giving me my choice of a right handed pitcher to use? I’m going with the circa 2000 version of Pedro Martinez.

Now, if you’re going with a lefty lineup and I need to use a southpaw to try and slow you down, this choice is, I think, much easier than the right handed decision I just made.

With all due respect to Clayton Kershaw, owner of three Cy Young Awards already and destined for Cooperstown someday, if I have one game to win and I need a lefty to start for me, the obvious choice is Randy Johnson.

Kershaw is remarkable, right now, but Johnson, in the early 2000’s, was putting up staggering numbers, like Pedro, at the height of the steroid era. From 1999 through 2002, Johnson had 31 complete games and 11 shutouts. 31 complete games in four years. In one of the most productive offensive eras in baseball history, remember.


Lee Evans in the AFC title game. A catch? Or no?

I was there.

In fact, I was standing in the second level press box at Gillette Stadium, looking out over the edge of the press box at the corner of the end zone where Evans caught the pass that sent the Ravens to the Super Bowl in Indianapolis.

Except he didn’t catch it. And New England, not the Ravens, wound up going to Indy.

Some people still say Evans made that catch.

The referees said he didn’t.

I’ll tell you what happened.

It wasn’t a catch.

It was awfully, awfully close. When I was on the radio back then, we had a math/sciences professor from UMBC check in and say he believed Evans was three-tenths of a second away from completing the catch and not having the ball swatted out of his arm.

Three-tenths of a second is like the snap of a finger.

It was that close.

But Evans didn’t catch that ball. He needed one more half-a-stride. One more movement with his body. He just needed, well, three-tenths of a second more, I guess.

But that was NOT a catch.


Pete Rose – Hall of Fame now, or “out forever”?

I think this one is pretty easy, honestly.

Pete Rose bet on baseball games when he was the manager of a team in the league.

Other than actually endeavoring to fix the outcome of a game – which most gamblers would gladly do as long as they were in on who was going to win – there’s no greater mistake a baseball player or manager can make then betting on the games they’re playing in.

And everyone in baseball knows the “golden rule”. It’s posted in every locker room. In prime position, for everyone to view: DO NOT GAMBLE ON BASEBALL GAMES. YOU FACE A LIFETIME BAN IF YOU DO.

The Hall of Fame doesn’t need Pete Rose in order to validate themselves as the host of all of the sport’s greatest players.

Pete Rose should be in the Hall of Fame, yes. And he would be, too, if just hadn’t bet on baseball when he was a manager.

And this answer of mine has nothing to do with his years of lying and telling anyone who would listen that he was being “railroaded” by Major League Baseball.

It has to do with the fact that Rose bet on baseball games when he was a manager.

And he should never, ever be admitted into baseball’s Hall of Fame.

This has no connection to steroids or anything else. Whether or not baseball players who used steroids should make the Hall of Fame is an issue. But it has nothing to do with betting on baseball games. They are as similar to one another as are drunk driving and making an illegal right turn on red.

Pete Rose bet on baseball games when he was a manager. It’s a stand alone topic.

And an easy one to answer.

Pete Rose shouldn’t be in baseball’s Hall of Fame.

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baseball gets it right with two new rule changes


The owners and the player's association agreed on a new collective bargaining agreement yesterday, and with it come two new rule changes for 2017 and beyond that are good moves by everyone involved at Major League Baseball.

The All-Star Game winner will no longer get home field in the World Series.

Hip hip hooray for that one! After 14 years of awarding the extra home game to the league that won the mid-season classic, MLB will go back to the simplest rule of them all. The pennant winning team with the better record that advances to the World Series will be the one with home field.

It's a solid rule change and reduces the All-Star Game to what it should be. An "exhibition", where all selected players get to play and represent their team.

The other rule change is one likely pushed by the managers themselves. There is no longer a 15-day disabled list. Instead, a player must now only miss a minimum of 10 days. Welcome to the "10-day disabled list".

I like that one, too.

I was hoping they'd pass a rule change that says in the Wild Card game, if it goes to extra innings, you must use your best pitcher at some point before the expiration of the 12th inning. That one didn't get put on the table, sadly.

Turns out, it would have been one year too late anyway.

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so, what do our poll results show about the ravens?


On Tuesday here at #DMD, we gave you all the opportunity to vote on how you think the Ravens 2016 regular season is going to end.

You had five choices; 10-6 and win the division, 10-6 and lose the division, 9-7 and win the division, 9-7 and lose the division, 8-8 and fire everybody.

Here's the voting breakdown:

54% of you think the Ravens are NOT going to win the division.

46% of you think the Ravens ARE going to win the division.

Of that 46%, about 10% of those votes came in under the "8-8 and fire everybody" option.

You know what I think. I think the Ravens are going 9-7 and winning the division by virtue of a better record against common opponents, the 3rd tiebreaker on the list.

And speaking of polls, we'll give the Tiger Woods poll below one more day to marinate and collect some votes before we reveal those responses tomorrow here at #DMD.

Woods makes his return to golf today in the Bahamas at the Hero World Challenge.

He's listed as 4-1 to break 70 today, in case you care. I think I'd put a mythical $1,000 down on that, honestly. At 4-1? Those are pretty good odds that a guy with Tiger's pedigree can beat it around a course in a silly season event and shoot three under par or better.

He's 40-1 to win the tournament. Heck, I might even bet that, too, just in case he gets a huge dose of beginner's luck to fall his way.

But he's NOT winning. I mean, I'd bet that he's going to finish in the bottom five in the field of 18 before I'd bet he's going to win.

Even though no one really cares who wins the Hero World Challenge, 17 of the best players in the world are gathered at the course for four days of golf and a lot of extra spending money for the holiday season ($1 million to the winner) -- and at some point, pure "golfing pride" takes over and guys try to shoot the lowest score they can.

That said, a win for Woods would almost -- note that word: almost -- be as good as a regular TOUR event victory for him given his absence from competitive golf for the last 15 months. A win here would be a huge springboard for him in a way that it wouldn't be for anyone else in the field.

For the Tiger haters out there, have no fear: He's NOT winning this weekend.

Cast your vote on Tiger's return to golf below.


 Drew's Morning Dish

#DMD Poll #7

Question: How will Tiger Woods fare in his return to golf this week at the Hero World Challenge? Note: only 18 players are in the field.
Win
Top 5
Somewhere around 10th
Probably around 15th or so
Dead last, 18th place
Name
Email address
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umbc stays hot with road win at duquesne


First year UMBC men's basketball coach Ryan Odom certainly knows how to enter a room.

His Retrievers scored 52 first half points, built a 16-point second half lead, and held off host Duquesne, 81-72, last night at the A.J. Palumbo Center in Pittsburgh, PA.

UMBC got another solid night from Jairus Lyles, as the junior guard scored 16 points in an 81-72 road win at Duquesne on Wednesday evening.

The Retrievers improved to 5-1 on the campaign, and posted its first victory over Duquesne (3-5) in five lifetime meetings.

Even better: The victory was the Retrievers' first over an Atlantic 10 squad since the 2007-08 campaign.

Four Retrievers scored in double figures, paced by sophomore wing Joe Sherburne and junior guard Jairus Lyles, who tallied 16 points each. Senior forward Will Darley added 13 points and junior guard Rodney Elliott added 11.

The 52 points were a season-high for UMBC in the first 20 minutes of play in 2016-17.

Duquesne quickly cut the 16-point halftime deficit to 52-49 early in the second half, but UMBC responded with a 17-4 surge to lead 69-53 with 13:17 remaining.

The hosts got as close as 73-68 with 4:20 remaining, but UMBC maintained its poise and Lyles hit a key layup with 2:15 to play and the Dukes could only counter with one more bucket in the final stages of the game.

The 5-1 record ties UMBC's best-ever at the Division I level, matching the 2000-01 squad.

UMBC returns home to face Messiah (Pa.) on Saturday, December 3rd, at 1:00 pm at the RAC.


our holiday winter apparel drive will now officially be a "blast"


For those of you needing a little extra incentive to dig through those closets and storage spaces for your no-longer-worn winter apparel, we have it for you!

I'm excited to announce that the Baltimore Blast is joining with us as a partner in the 2016 "Winter Apparel Drive, presented by Jerry's Toyota".

Thanks to our friends at the Blast for partnering with #DMD for our holiday winter apparel drive! Bring us ten items of winter clothing and you'll get two free Blast tickets for their January 14th home game.

For those that might not know, my old radio pal Glenn Clark and I have been doing this for six years now, collecting winter apparel for men, women and children and donating it to the fine people at Helping Up Mission in downtown Baltimore.

This year, we have three public drop-off locations coming up in December, and we're thrilled to have the Blast joining us to help you "dig a little deeper" for that winter apparel.

Anyone bringing us ten (10) articles of winter clothing gets two free tickets to the January 14 Blast home game when they host the Harrisburg Heat at the Royal Farms Arena.

What's an "article" of winter clothing, you ask? Easy: Anything that can be worn in the winter. Coats, jackets, pullovers, sweatshirts, winter hats, gloves, socks, boots, shoes.

And please know this is NOT just restricted to men's clothing, even though it's going to be donated to Helping Up Mission, which is an "all male" facility.

Many of the guys use the women's or children's clothing for holiday gifts to their loved ones. It's a very touching scene down there to see men so excited about finding something to give to a family member or friend when they otherwise wouldn't have been able to do so on their own.

Your participation is so appreciated by them! And we'll be video taping it all and presenting it here for you at #DMD so you can see first-hand what it's like on December 20 (donation day) at Helping Up Mission.

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Our friends at Jerry's Toyota will once again serve as the title sponsor of our Winter Apparel Drive. Visit Jerry's Toyota at 8001 Belair Road from 3 pm to 6 pm on December 15 and donate ten items and receive two free Blast tickets!

Here are our three public drop-off dates where you can get the two free Blast tickets.

Tuesday, December 13, Glory Days Grill on East Joppa Road in Towson. 5 pm to 8 pm (free appetizers for those who come out that night!)

Thursday, December 15, Jerry's Toyota on Belair Road in Fullerton. 3 pm to 6 pm (free Royal Farms coffee for those who come out that night!)

Monday, December 19, Chick fil-A of Nottingham Square in White Marsh, 5 pm to 8 pm (a very special guest will join us that night...)

All we need now are your gently used pieces of winter clothing! Please take some time to go through your closets, dressers and storage spaces and give us what you no longer use. You will be making a big difference in someone's life this holiday season.

And...you'll be going to see the Baltimore Blast!!! Absolutely free!!!


please click here to see previous issues of #dmd.

RETRIEVER ROUND-UP

The UMBC women's basketball team lost their 4th straight game on Wednesday, November 30, falling 70-53 at American University.

The Lady Retrievers (2-4) next head to College Park this Sunday, December 4 for a 2 pm visit with the University of Maryland.

breakfast bytes

Cowboys stop late 2-point conversion, improve to 11-1 with 17-15 win at Minnesota.

Lethargic Caps get blanked at home by last place Islanders, 3-0.

NBA: Golden State loses at home, 132-127 in 2 OT to Houston.

Patriots' Gronkowski to miss two months due to back surgery.