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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 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 […]

PiR: O’s Bullpen, Not Starters, Racking Up the W’s

Brad Brach looks in for a sign from the catcher.
Reality: Hyun Soo Kim batting .377 with a .449 on-base percentage. Most hits in 1st 22 games in @Orioles history: 1. Billy Ripken 292. Curtis Goodwin 273. Hyun Soo Kim 26 Rickard 26 B. Roberts 26 — O's Stats & Facts (@BirdlandStats) June 5, 2016 Perception: I don’t know what’s more surprising about the stat in the tweet…that Kim is doing so well, or that Billy Ripken actually holds an all-time Orioles record. Before we saw Kim step on a field in the United States, all I heard was that […]

PiR: Can O’s Carry Cleveland Momentum into Clash with Boston?

orioles jiminez on mound throwing pitch
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles are 4-6 in their last 10 games. Rough week to be an #Orioles fan. — Chris Monty (@ChrisMonty) May 28, 2016 Perception: Yes, it has been a rough week to be an Orioles fan. The Orioles pitching, no thanks to Ubaldo Jimenez, has been okay, but the hitting has been a major worry this week. In the last 7 games, the O’s have been outscored 25-40. They have struck out 89 times (most in MLB). They have left 58 men on base, while going just 11-for-59 […]

PiR: Adjust the Strike Zone? What’s the Point?

Gary Thorne and Jim Palmer in the O's booth, Gary wearing a mother's day giveaway hat.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles have won nine of their 14 series in 2016. The #Orioles are 9-4-1 from their first 14 series' of the season. — Dan Clark (@DanClarkSports) May 22, 2016 Perception: The O’s continue to find ways to win, and frankly that is all the matters. 26-16 is a great record as we head for the final week of May. Anytime that you can be 10 games over .500 it is a great place to be. Yes, Sunday wasn’t pretty…but when have the Orioles been pretty on Sundays […]

PiR: Every Facet Contributing in Latest Winning Streak

Adam Jones walks into the dugout high-fiving teammates as Ryan Flaherty points.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles have won six in a row. Perception: The O’s started the season with seven wins in a row and everyone said that was a fluke and it would never continue. The Birds went on to go 9-12 in their next 21 games. I think that’s the sort of winning percentage more fans thought the Orioles might be this year. But then the O’s ripped off another six in a row. The Orioles are 22-12, and are a season-high 10 games over .500. Two win streaks of […]

PiR: Mark Trumbo Giving O’s Fans Flashbacks to Nelson Cruz

Mark Trumbo prepares to hit.
Reality: The Baltimore Orioles starters are ranked 21st in MLB with a 4.62 ERA. In 4 starts this year vs. the AL East, Chris Tillman is 3-0 with an ERA of 1.46. — Steve Melewski (@masnSteve) May 4, 2016 Perception: Everyone knew coming into this season that the Orioles season was going to hinge on the success of the Birds starters. Overall, they haven’t been stellar, but they really haven’t been terrible. Yes, they need to go deeper in games, but they are not getting shelled as a whole. Over […]

PiR: “All or Nothing” Offense Looks Very Familiar

Manny Machado and Jonathan Schoop celebrate.
Reality: The Orioles are 11-7, but are 4-7 in their last 11 games. Perception: After starting 7-0, the O’s have cooled off a bit. But that doesn’t mean that they aren’t good. They still have the 3rd best record in the American League. Baseball has a very long season. You can break it down into nine 18-game segments. So after the first segment of the season, the Birds are 11-7. Now as they go into the second segment tonight, they need to find a way to win more than they […]

PiR: Can Offense & Bullpen Make Up for Starters’ Struggles?

Zach Britton throws from the mound.
REALITY: Since 2012, no team in the American League has more wins than the Baltimore Orioles Orioles have been AL's winningest team (360-293) in 5 seasons GM Dan Duquette and Manager Buck Showalter have been together. @Orioles — Richard Justice (@richardjustice) April 11, 2016 PERCEPTION: Let that sink in. After so many seasons of despair in Baltimore, the Birds have been the winningest team in the league over the last four years. So why is it so surprising when they start off the 2016 season with the best record in […]

PiR: O’s, Gallardo, Rickard Start off 2016 On the Right Foot

Yovani Gallardo throws for the Orioles.
REALITY: The Baltimore Orioles have won their last eight regular season games. Dating back to last year, #Orioles have won 8 straight regular season games. Won last 5 of last season. — Eduardo A. Encina (@EddieInTheYard) April 8, 2016 PERCEPTION: I know, you can’t count “last year to this year” stats as continual, but it’s fun when they add up favorably for your team. As bad as they started in spring, it’s nice to see them show all the naysayers something. This team is going to fight and claw their […]

PiR: Plenty of Questions for O’s as Season Kicks Off

Ubaldo Jimenez throws in a Spring Training game.
REALITY: As we approach Opening Day, the Baltimore Orioles starting pitching rotation is still not set. Why not try a piggyback system for #Orioles this year: Tillman/Worley; Wright/Wilson; Jimenez/Bundy; Gallardo/McFarland. #Ifallelsefails — Jon Meoli (@JonMeoli) March 30, 2016 PERCEPTION: The Baltimore Sun’s Jon Meoli put out an odd idea the other day… but the more I thought about it, the more I actually liked it. Look, unless something miraculous happens, the Orioles will have the worst staff in the AL East and possibly in all of the American League. To […]

PERCEPTION IS REALITY: O’s Spring Record Nothing to Worry About

Manny Machado throws in a game in Sarasota.
REALITY: The Baltimore Orioles are winless so far in Spring Training. PERCEPTION: Who cares! They are 0-8-1, but if you look back at the successful teams over the last few seasons, you’ll see that most were below .500 during Spring Training. So the Orioles record doesn’t matter, but some of the things happening can make you think. Ryan Flaherty is playing very well offensively and defensively once again proving that he belongs in the majors. I have said it over and over again over the last few years…I have no […]

PERCEPTION IS REALITY: Will More Players “Opt-Out” of Signing Here?

Ubaldo Jimenez throws in Sarasota.
REALITY: Dan Duquette and the Orioles continue to refuse to offer an “opt-out” to any player. #Orioles won't do opt-outs. Fine. But if every other team does, will anyone sign with O's? — Joe Polek (@JoePolek) February 25, 2016 PERCEPTION: I understand this thought process, and especially their reasoning. They say that it doesn’t benefit the team at all, so why would they do it? I agree and that seems like the right stance to have when trying to make decisions for your team. However, if every other team is […]

PERCEPTION IS REALITY: O’s Spent, but Did They Improve?

Matt Wieters participates in spring training 2015 drills.
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 happened 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 […]

PERCEPTION IS REALITY: Crush, Kazmir, & Kim

Chris Davis of the Baltimore Orioles takes a swing.
REALITY: The Baltimore Orioles signed reliever Darren O’Day to a four-year contract. PERCEPTION: This was a great start to the off-season for the O’s. They did not attempt to re-sign Andrew Miller last year, after they traded for him in the summer. It ended up being a good thing, at least in the short term, as Miller spent a good part of the season in the disabled list. But with O’Day they have more of a history, and they didn’t want to lose him. According to O’Day, he was ready […]

PiR: O’s Latest Scoring Drought Perfect Microcosm of Lost Season

orioles player striking out with catcher behind him
REALITY: The Baltimore Orioles are scoreless in 36 of the last 37 innings. PERCEPTION: The Orioles went 28 innings straight without scoring a run. This is inexcusable, especially for a team that was trying to make a final run at the playoffs. But that sort of defines the Orioles season, doesn’t it? The ups and downs of this season were unlike any other. It’s a team that was good enough (and talented enough) to be in the playoffs. But then again, they went through spurts where they were also one […]

PiR: Trouble Brewing in the Warehouse Again?

buck showalter standing by fence talking to dan duquette
REALITY: The Baltimore Orioles’ top pitching prospect, Hunter Harvey, has been shut down once again. PERCEPTION: The Orioles’ 22nd overall pick in the 2013 MLB draft has been bothered by elbow problems for two years now. This past week, he had renewed discomfort in his elbow and has been shut down for the rest of 2015. The Orioles have abandoned their plans to have Harvey pitch in the Arizona Fall League and he will instead go see Dr. James Andrews. Along with Dylan Bundy, Harvey was expected to anchor the […]
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