Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Cleaning Up

Just a couple of issues that haven't been addressed recently here....

Josh Vittek, the slugger from the Mount, was not selected in last week's Major League Baseball draft. That's a disappointment. He had such a great career, and a fine senior season for the Mounties leading them to their first ever NCAA tournament appearance. Lots of people have checked in here to check on his status but we really don't have much to report other than we don't have anything to report. We've tried to get in touch with his family (as his father once commented here), but I doubt they even realize it, to try to find out what the future may hold. Hopefully, he gets a chance to swing the big stick somewhere again soon, but whatever the future holds we're sure, he'll end up on his feet.

Just when you thought the Orioles were done (or I did) they have this road trip. Through eight games, they've won five times, winning the first two series in Toronto and Minnesota, and can win the third straight series tomorrow night in Boston. They stand 32-32, which is obviously just .500. But it must be a surprise to even the strongest of optimists. The difference recently to me has been the consistent hitting of Nick Markakis and Brian Roberts. If those guys hit the O's will stay above or around that 500 mark.

In addition, the O's minor leaguers continue to perform admirably and bring additional hope to the future. Tonight, Brandon Erbe threw seven hitless innings before he was lifted in the eighth. He did allow a run, but the Keys rallied for two in the bottom of the eighth to win it. The first two hitters reached base in the eighth bringing all-everything Matt Wieters to the plate. Wieters did what everyone expected him to do, he dropped the perfect sacrifice bunt moving two runners into scoring position. Brandon Snyder followed with a two-run single and the Keys won 3-1.

Through five days of action EURO 2008 hasn't provided too many surprises. The big one of course was The Netherlands downing Italy 3-0. Giovanni Van Bronckhorst played a great match for the Dutch and was rewarded late with a goal. He also kept an Italian shot out with a great play on a corner kick and he fired up the field to help set up the second goal.

From my viewpoint, the Dutch, Spanish and Portugeese have been the most impressive. But don't count out the French or Germans, and possibly even the Italians who might excel once the group play is over.

Five names for the U.S. Open: Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Padraig Harrington, Luke Donald and Aaron Baddeley. I'm guessing the winner comes from that group.

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