About Joe Polek

Joe Polek

Joe Polek was born in Baltimore, MD, and was raised in Bel Air, MD. In 2001, he moved to Portland, Maine for a job in radio. In 2012, he moved to Columbia, SC for another gig in radio, where he currently resides with his wife, Nicole, and their two daughters. Joe is a huge sports fan, but most importantly he lives and breathes Baltimore (and Maryland) sports. He routinely gets back to Baltimore for a Ravens game once a year, and while living in Maine, went to Foxboro and Fenway whenever the Ravens or Orioles came to town. A couple of his highlights were being at the final game at Baltimore’s Memorial Stadium, and also sitting in left field for “2130”, and “2131” (Cal Ripken’s consecutive game streak). Find Joe on Twitter at @JPonSports.

PiR: O’s Err in Letting Christian Walker Go for Nothing

Christian Walker throws in Spring Training.
Maybe you are new to the Eutaw Street Report. Let me explain this article a bit. I remember growing up reading the sports pages of the Baltimore Sun newspaper every single day. I really looked forward to one specific article that ran every month or so that was a “Fact and Opinion” column. I believe it was John Eisenberg who wrote it. It must have been popular, because I remember the sports editor of The Aegis in Harford County, Randy McRoberts, copying the idea every now and then in his […]

PiR: Sizing Up the O’s as the Offseason Approaches

Matt Wieters prepares to swing.
Reality: The AL East had three teams in the playoffs. Perception: Two of those teams, Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles, did not win a single game in the playoffs. The Toronto Blue Jays have won four games so far, but are currently down 2-0 to the Cleveland Indians in the ALCS. Going into the postseason, the division had a 60% chance of putting a team in the World Series. I live in the south, where folks have this strange conference loyalty. When their team isn’t in it, they root […]

PiR: All-Or-Nothing Offense Will Only Ever Get So Far

Chris Davis and Manny Machado give a low five after Machado's home run.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles have won more games than any other American League team since Buck Showalter became the Manager of the team. Buck Showalter is Baltimore's greatest manager since Weaver. Buck Showalter made a horrible boneheaded decision tonight. Both can be true. — Dan J. Glickman (@DanJGlickman) October 5, 2016 Perception: That fact has been lost to many fans. Maybe it was only in the heat of the moment last week, but there were so many Orioles fans tweeting that it was fine to fire Buck in the 24 […]

PiR: O’s Back in the Postseason Yet Again

Tommy Hunter holds an armful of beers as a teammate dumps champagne on his head.
Reality: The Orioles have made the playoffs three times in the last five seasons. The Orioles have made the postseason three times in five years since bringing back the cartoon bird. pic.twitter.com/IfxLNR135C — Justin McGuire (@JMcGuireSN) October 2, 2016 Perception: After not even getting to .500 from 1998 to 2011, this stat still gives me chills. There is a lot that goes into that… the start of the Manny Machado era. Dan Duquette and Buck Showalter arrived. And yes, the cartoon bird too. It was a total change in the […]

PiR: It’s Going to be a Tense Final Week in Birdland

Wade Miley of the Orioles pitches.
Reality: Trey Mancini became the 3rd player in MLB history to hit a home run in each of his first three starts. Perception: Mancini has been great so far. He is 4-for-11 with a double and three home runs. He has five RBI and two strike outs. Obviously, his career is not going to continue like that, but it’s a nice start and it’s been a good pick-up for a team that was really struggling offensively. Mancini got his chance after spending three-plus seasons in the minors. He was always […]

Perception is Reality: Buckling Up for the September Stretch Run

Manny Machado and Pedro Alvarez low five.
Reality: Chris Davis has 38 Home Runs on the year. Perception: In terms of Home Runs, Davis has had a really good season. He is likely to hit 40 home runs for the 3rd time in his career. However, when you look inside the numbers a bit more, it has been a really frustrating year. He is on pace to have the 2nd lowest number of hits, total bases, doubles, RBI, and second-lowest slugging percentage and OPS since his first full season with the Orioles (2012). He is also close […]

PiR: Settling in for a Wild Home Stretch in the AL East

Chris Tillman winds up to pitch.
Reality: Chris Tillman is 16-5 with a 3.68 ERA in 27 starts. Tillman's line: 6 innings, 4 hits, 1 run, 1 BB and 4 strikeouts, threw 105/65. O's starters have 9 QS last 13 games with 3.15 ERA. — Steve Melewski (@masnSteve) September 11, 2016 Perception: Tillman is having a really great year, on pace to have the best season of his career. In 2013, Tillman went 16-7 with a 3.71 ERA in 33 starts. Tillman will probably get four more starts during the regular season and he missed about […]

PiR: O’s Need to Continue Streak of Winning Septembers

Caleb Joseph in his catcher's gear.
Reality: Caleb Joseph has 0 runs batted in in 2016. Caleb Joseph still has a few weeks to sidestep some infamous baseball history https://t.co/kNv3Wy8Ld6 — Dan Connolly (@danconnolly2016) September 7, 2016 Perception: I really like Joseph so it’s hard for me to write this. But Joseph already has set the all-time record for a non-pitcher for AB without an RBI in a single season at 120. The record for any player is 137, set by Oscar Jones, a pitcher, in 1904. Oscar Jones, a pitcher, had 0 RBI for the […]

PiR: Kevin Gausman Turning Into the Ace the O’s Need?

Ace Ventura's head on Kevin Gausman's body.
Reality: Mark Trumbo is the 7th player in Orioles history to hit at least 40 home runs. Other #Orioles to hit 40: Davis (53 and 47), Anderson (50), F. Robinson (49), Gentile (46), Palmeiro (43), Cruz (40).. Eighth time. — Rich Dubroff (@RichDubroffCSN) August 28, 2016 Perception: Trumbo becomes the 7th Orioles (and the 8th overall time for the team) to hit that mark. The last time it happened? 2014 when Nelson Cruz did it. Most fans know the similarities in those two players. Cruz signed a one-year contract with […]

PiR: AL West’s Dominance of O’s is Nothing New

O's Steve Pearce reacts to a called third strike.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles have struggled against the AL West all season. .@Orioles' record by division, in 2016: AL East: 26-21AL Central: 21-8AL West: 12-21Interleague: 8-5 — O's Stats & Facts (@BirdlandStats) August 21, 2016 Perception: This is not a rare occurrence for the O’s. The AL West has never been nice to the Birds. Since 2012, against American League teams only, Baltimore’s lowest winning percentage is against the Houston Astros, Texas Rangers, and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Their record against the Seattle Mariners and Oakland Athletics is better. […]

PiR: One in Five Jonathan Schoop Homers Has Won the Game

Manny Machado and Jonathan Schoop celebrate.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles went 5-5 on their third and final West Coast Road Trip of 2016. @Orioles are"holding steady" after strong 1st half: coming off 5-5 road trip, they're 15-15 since All Star break. 45 gms left, 25 at HOME. — Mark Viviano (@MarkWJZ) August 15, 2016 Perception: As I said in this column one week ago, the Orioles needed to go 5-5 on the trip and they would be just find and that’s exactly what they did. They need to play .500 ball on the road, and with […]

PiR: Dylan Bundy O’s Most Important Deadline “Acquisition?”

Dylan Bundy pitches with the White Sox 1B coach in the background.
Reality: Since the All-Star break, in five starts, Dylan Bundy is 3-2 with a 3.00 ERA. Dylan Bundy over his last four starts: 1.90 ERA, 23.2 IP, 12 H, 3 BB, 29 K — O's Stats & Facts (@BirdlandStats) August 7, 2016 Perception: That ERA is 10th best among AL starters in the second half of the season. Giving Bundy a chance to start every five days is probably the best move the Orioles have done this season, and it basically makes him the best move they made at the […]

PiR: Wade Miley Not Great, but Better than What O’s Had

Wade Miley of the Mariners pitches.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles traded for left-handed pitcher Wade Miley. Perception: The Orioles did what the Orioles needed to do…pick up a starting pitcher, and a lefty at that. So why are Orioles fans all up in arms? Dan Duquette did exactly what he set out to do. Did you really think a pitcher like Chris Sale was coming to Baltimore? If you did, you need to do a bit more research on how things work. As we’ve said on this site many times before, the Orioles simply don’t have […]

PiR: Upton Would Provide O’s a Lift, Now and in October

Melvin Upton Jr. holds his bat.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles have been in talks with the San Diego Padres about acquiring outfielder Melvin (no longer BJ) Upton Jr. Orioles and Blue Jays said to be leaders for melvin Upton Jr. Also been discussed in bigger deals involving more padres. — Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 23, 2016 Perception: I’ve heard a lot of fans say “Why are the Orioles trying for an outfielder instead of a pitcher? We have outfielders!” Let me try to explain. The Orioles are in desperate need of a quality starting pitcher, yes, […]

PiR: O’s Bats Cool As Summer Sizzles On

Manny Machado finishes his swing and watches as the ball flies, while the Blue Jays catcher stands behind him.
Reality: The Orioles have struggled to score runs since the All-Star Break. From 6/26 to 6/29, the @Orioles scored 35 runs over 27 innings. Before today, they scored just 2 runs in their previous 27 innings. — O's Stats & Facts (@BirdlandStats) July 21, 2016 Perception: Before Thursday’s win, the Orioles had scored just two runs in the previous three games. For a team that leads the league in home runs and is in the Top 10 in baseball in average, runs, and RBIs, the Yankees series was just not […]

PiR: O’s Getting it Done at Home & Against Bad Teams

Orioles fans high five at Oriole Park at camden yards.
Reality: The Orioles are tied for the 6th most wins in baseball this year. #Orioles have 51 wins (with 75 games left) and a 2-game lead in the AL East. Safe to say this team was underestimated around the country. — Joe Polek (@JoePolek) July 10, 2016 Perception: Before the season started, everyone put out their predictions. Now, no one can know what will really happen. But you can see trends and such. So what about these trends? ESPN: 0 writers picked the Orioles to win the AL East. Only […]

PiR: On Potentially Piggybacking Starters, Caleb’s Struggles, & More

Caleb Joseph in his catcher's gear.
Reality: The Orioles go into the All-Star break in 1st place in the AL East. This is the most incompetent first place team I've ever seen. — Ryan Blake (@ryguyblake) July 9, 2016 Perception: I love Baltimore and I defend Baltimore sports fans constantly…but there are so many times (especially on Twitter) that I see things posted by fans that make me think Baltimore sports fans are just as critical as those in other cities. This team is good. Offensively, they are one of the bests team in baseball. Defensively, they […]

PiR: O’s in Good Shape Even After Pitching Woes Exposed in Seattle

Tyler Wilson holds a baseball and looks confused.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles starting pitchers did not do well in the four-game series in Seattle. O's starting pitching this series: 18 innings, 29 hits, 21 runs, 7 homers, 10.50 ERA. — Steve Melewski (@masnSteve) July 3, 2016 Perception: While the Orioles offense seems to remain consistently good, the pitching is anything but consistent. On the six-game road trip so far, the rotation has an ERA of 7.76. That will win you 0 games, unless you have an offense like the O’s do. But even with their offense, that is […]

PiR: O’s Need Pitching Help, but Pickins’ are Slim

Rich Hill of the Oakland Athletics pitches.
Reality: The Orioles are 40-28 and in 1st place in the AL East. Perception: If you really think about it, that’s a pretty remarkable fact after all the O’s have gone through this season. Outside of Chris Tillman, their rotation pretty has pretty much stunk. They give up way too runs, with no starter (besides Tillman) having below a 4.14 ERA. No team with that awful of a starting rotation should be 12 games over .500. Then think about the injuries to Kevin Gausman, Yovani Gallardo, J.J. Hardy, Caleb Joseph, […]

PiR: After Being Battered in Toronto, What do O’s do About Pitching?

Ubaldo Jimenez wipes his face with his jersey as he walks off the mound.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles hit 12 home runs in the last four games in Toronto. O's scored 24 runs and hit 12 homers in series but gave up 30 runs, losing of 3 of 4 at Rogers Centre to fall to 36-26. — Steve Melewski (@masnSteve) June 12, 2016 Perception: I’m shocked at how many fans, on twitter, give up on the O’s in the early innings of games. The O’s have scored more runs than any other American League team from the 7th inning on, and they have the […]
[adrotate block="7"]
[adrotate block="8"]