Not a creature was stirring...

If you're heading out to do some last-minute shopping, I'll just ask...are you crazy?!

I'm out of milk and I'm afraid to venture to the grocery store. I'll eat my Cheerios dry. All I need is a highchair and a sippy cup.

It would be an upset of monumental proportions if the Orioles signed a free agent today - or scheduled a physical so they could sign a free agent. I'm on call as always, but I don't anticipate any news on Christmas Eve.

If Adam LaRoche finally agrees to terms, he might want to borrow Aubrey Huff's "I Heart Baltimore" t-shirt. He'll have some sucking up to do.

LaRoche wants three years. Disputes remain whether the Orioles have gone there with his agent. Depends who you talk to, as usual.

A team official suggested earlier this week that I not beat that drum too loudly - in other words, I'll be wrong - but someone close to the negotiations from outside the organization says it's true.

You can be sure that the Orioles and agent Mike Milchin have discussed a third year. Maybe it's not on paper, but it's come up. And it's certainly in LaRoche's best interests to have other teams hear that the Orioles are dangling a three-year offer in the $21 million range.

(By the way, is this the same Mike Milchin who pitched for the Orioles in 1996?)

LaRoche wants three years, preferably from a better team. Derrek Lee might take one year, but he wants it to come from a contender.

The Orioles are like the kid who's being picked last for dodgeball.

My guess is that LaRoche won't walk away with a three-year deal. Maybe two with an option, but not three guaranteed. That's just a hunch. And Lee will settle for one.

I'm also going to guess that the Orioles have a first baseman in their lineup on Opening Day. They won't leave the bag unattended.

Brian Roberts has good range, but it's not that good.

Did you know that the Orioles were outscored, 104-62, in the first inning and 102-69 in the eighth?

If it makes you feel any better, they outscored opponents, 83-73, in the sixth inning and 18-11 in extra innings.

The Orioles were 10-1 in extra-inning games at Camden Yards.

Really. You can look it up.

They also were 22-6 in one-run games at home, but 7-15 in one-run games on the road.

They were 18-33 against left-handed starters, which seems to be a yearly issue. Mark Reynolds and J.J. Hardy are supposed to help.

LaRoche is a career .254 hitter vs. lefties. Lee is a career .289 hitter against them.

Just saying.

Also, did you know that the Orioles re-signed minor league catcher Michel Hernandez?

OK, I've pretty much emptied my stocking here. Enjoy the day. And be safe.

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