Coffee Companion -- 4/28

Each morning, Monday through Friday, I'll hook you up with some reading material to skim through as you slug down coffee and slack off at the start of your workday -- that way I'll have an excuse to do the same at the start of mine.

Running it back:

After the Orioles blew a 4-0 lead Wednesday night, Vlad Guerrero's RBI single lifted the Orioles to a win over the Red Sox. ... Orioles reliever Jim Johnson has returned to form after ineffectiveness and injury put a damper on his 2010 season. ... The Ravens' draft plans may hinge on Colorado CB Jimmy Smith. The team could trade down if he isn't available at pick No. 26. ... The NFL labor battle has taken a bite out of the usual draft hype.

Hitting the links:

1. Josh Beckett is upset with Luke Scott for flipping his bat after a home run [Boston Globe]

2. More on the flipped bat [ESPN]

3. The Orioles came out on top, but they screwed Jeremy Guthrie out of another win [Camden Chat]

4. Here is an update on top prospect Manny Machado [Orioles Insider]

5. Here's Jamison Hensley's final mock draft [Ravens Insider]

6. John Eisenberg: The Ravens should go defense in the first round [CSN Baltimore]

7. Five guys who could be Ravens by the end of the night [MASN]

8. A look at Jimmy Smith's red flags [Ravens Insider]

9. Brendon Ayanbadejo has once again publicly advocated for gay rights [Toy Department]

10. What are appropriate expectations for Maryland football in 2011? [Baltimore Sports and Life]

11. Are these Maryland's new football uniforms? [D.C. Sports Bog]

12. The Capitals will face the Lightning, who knocked off the Penguins [Washington Post]

13. What's causing Nicklas Backstrom's slump? [Capitals Insider]

You said it:

"Nice list, but why Jared Gaither over Michael Oher?" -- reader cughuni raises a fair question about my Ravens all-draft team. In retrospect, I probably should have went with Oher. Oh well.

Video of the morning: 

Former Towson star Gary Neal saved the Spurs Wednesday night [hat tip to Toy Department]

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