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Dan Daly

Dan Daly

Dan Daly has been writing about sports for the Washington Times since 1982. He has won numerous national and local awards, appears regularly in NFL Films’ historical features and is the co-author of "The Pro Football Chronicle,” a decade-by-decade history of the game. Follow Dan on Twitter at @dandalyonsports –- or e-mail him at [email protected].

Articles by Dan Daly

Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman signed for six-years and $100 million after missing 60 games last season because of abdominal surgery. (Associated Press)

DALY: D.C. teams spend too many bucks for too little bang

Things always seem to happen to D.C. athletes as soon as they're handed headline-grabbing megadeals. They get hurt … or their performance declines … or they commit an off-field/court/ice indiscretion. Or some combination of the three. Published June 25, 2012

Ian Desmond walks off the field as Baltimore's J.J. Hardy (2) and Brian Roberts celebrate the Orioles' 2-1 win Sunday. (Associated Press)

DALY: Real rivalry could be taking shape between the Beltways

We got our first inkling this year of what a true Nationals-Orioles rivalry could be like. And what it could be like is heavenly, like a snow cone on a summer day — sweet, refreshing and not nearly long-lasting enough. Published June 24, 2012

ACC Commissioner John Swofford

DALY: Players won't benefit from NCAA playoff format

There are few things football fans crave more than resolution. In fact, aside from tailgating, there might not be any. That's why overtime was instituted — to eliminate the ambiguity (and bookkeeping bother) of tie games. And it's why 12 of college athletics' most prominent suits met in Chicago this week to work out the details of a four-team FBS playoff to determine a truer national champion. Published June 21, 2012

Umpire Chris Guccione leaves with the glove of Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Joel Peralta during the eighth inning against the Washington Nationals on Tuesday, June 19, 2012, in Washington. Peralta was ejected in the eighth inning for having a foreign substance on his glove. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

DALY: In some circles, sinning equals winning

In the crimes-against-humanity department, applying a dab of pine tar to a baseball doesn't rank terribly high on the list. I'd put it somewhere between Internet pop-ups and Khloe and Lamar's reality show. So the fact that Tampa Bay Rays setup man Joel Peralta was discovered with "a significant amount" of the sticky stuff in his glove Tuesday night at Nationals Park is no great cause for outrage, especially given Peralta's pedestrian 3.81 ERA. Published June 20, 2012

Twenty-year-old rookie Mike Trout is batting .341 with a .401 on-base percentage, .541 slugging percentage and 16 stolen bases. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

DALY: Harper, Trout — Think Mays, Mantle

What's happening in baseball feels almost like a celestial event. Like two comets crisscrossing. Like a day-night doubleheader of eclipses. On one coast you have Bryce Harper, 19 years young, almost instantly becoming the top bat for the first-place Washington Nationals. And on the Pacific side of things, you have Mike Trout, all of 20, out-OPS-ing Albert Pujols, his Hall of Fame-bound Los Angeles Angels teammate, by nearly 200 points. Published June 14, 2012

Rory McIlroy shoot a record-breaking 16 under par in his march to the U.S. Open championship last year at Congressional. (The Washington Times)

DALY: U.S. Open's short stay brings lasting memories

Did the U.S. Open really visit our fair metropolis a year ago? Did Rory McIlroy, the Bryce Harper of Northern Ireland, really shoot a record-breaking 16 under and dust the field by eight strokes? Published June 11, 2012

Lucas Giolito, 6-foot-6 and 230 pounds, has a scholarship to UCLA waiting if he decides against entering professional baseball right away. (Alyson Boyer Rode)

DALY: Picking Lucas Giolito bold as much as it was risky for Nationals

Lucas Giolito might never throw a pitch for the Washington Nationals. He might decide to hang out at UCLA for a few years and see if his draft stock rises. Or the elbow strain that cost him his final high school season might be a harbinger of even worse horrors. You can come up with all kinds of reasons why he might never wear the curly W. Published June 6, 2012

The Nationals' Tyler Clippard has struck out six of the 11 batters he's faced since inheriting the closer's role. (Associated Press)

DALY: Is there room for two in Nats' closer's role?

When Drew Storen returns, would it make sense for Davey Johnson to ease him back in by adopting a two-closer strategy? It wouldn't, after all, be the first time he's done such a thing. Published June 4, 2012

Rookie Bryce Harper, who crushed a home run yesterday into the upper deck, has been one of the few Nationals who has proved reliable at the plate. (Associated Press)

DALY: Consider Harper for heart of Nationals' lineup

The question with Bryce Harper keeps changing. When will the Washington Nationals call him up? Can he play well enough to stay? And now, incredibly, just 32 games into his major league career, the thought has become: How long before Davey Johnson moves him to the middle of the order? Published June 3, 2012

Rookie Robert Griffin III will be firing passes to new Redskins receivers Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan, both signed as free agents.  (Andrew Harnik/The Washington TImes)

DALY: Shanahan all in for Redskins' overhaul

After the linemen had traipsed off to the showers Thursday — their second week of OTAs in the books — the rest of the Washington Redskins engaged in some 7-on-7 action in the red zone. And a spirited competition it was, too. At one point, when Robert Griffin III, with no rush to worry about, took his sweet time finding an open receiver for a touchdown, secondary coach Raheem Morris pleaded, "Can we get a shot clock?" Published May 31, 2012

Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper bats during a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves Sunday, May 27, 2012 in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

DALY: Harper's stellar start is a gold mine for stat freaks

It was around the time the baseball sailed over the right-center field wall Sunday in Atlanta, the latest pitch put into orbit by Bryce Harper, that the following thought crossed the mind: The kid is no longer just a curiosity. In fact, he might be on the verge of becoming an obsession. With me, anyway. Published May 28, 2012

Bryce Harper cheered by adoring fans could be a scene repeated at Nationals Park for seasons to come. After all. the rookie outfielder won't even turn 20 years old until October. The Nationals led the NL East by 2 1/2 games after Saturday, and what's more, looked like they belonged in first place. (Associated Press)

DALY: Great times may lie ahead for Nationals

The idea of a baseball team — from April to October — being a central part of the sports conversation is entirely foreign to modern-day Washington. Published May 27, 2012

Redskins receiver Santana Moss, perhaps playing at more than his ideal weight, saw his catches, yardage and touchdowns fall by nearly a half in 2011 from what they were in 2010. (Andrew Harnik / The Washington Times)

DALY: Redskins hurt by too much time on their hands

The NFL offseason is for R and R — rest and rehab — and lord knows the players need it. But you don't want the offseason to be too "off," as it was during the 2011 lockout year, because all kinds of problems can ensue. Published May 24, 2012

**FILE** NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (left) and NFLPA Executive Director Demaurice Smith exchange papers Aug. 5, 2011, as they sign their collective bargaining agreement at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. (Associated Press)

DALY: Courtroom becomes NFL's new battlefield

Another day, another legal filing in the NFL. This latest one is a whopper, too — bigger than two Albert Haynesworths put together. Nobody's going to come out of this looking very good. Published May 23, 2012

Police say Junior Seau, a former NFL star, was found dead at his home in Oceanside, Calif., on Wednesday, May 2, 2012, after responding to a shooting there. He was 43. (Associated Press)

DALY: NFL players have to get their heads in the game

Pro football players don't make very good victims. For starters, they don't look like victims. Indeed, most of them look like the opposite of victims, like oversized bullies bent on physical and territorial domination. Published May 16, 2012

New York Rangers right wing Marian Gaborik (10), center Brad Richards (19), Marc Staal (18) and left wing Carl Hagelin (62), celebrate with Michael Del Zotto, obscured, as Washington Capitals left wing Alexander Semin reacts after Del Zotto scored in the third period of Game 7 of their second-round NHL Stanley Cup playoff series at Madison Square Garden in New York, Saturday, May 12, 2012. The Rangers won 2-1 and won the series 4-3. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

DALY: This time, the other team simply was better

This ending for the Washington Capitals feels different than the ones before it, and there's a reason for that. For the first time since the club returned to the playoffs in 2008, the usual excuses/explanations don't apply. Published May 13, 2012

Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin reacts after his season ended as the Caps lost Game 7 of the second-round series to the New York Rangers, 2-1, on Saturday night. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

DALY: An encouraging run by the Caps ends too soon

Another opportunity has passed the Washington Capitals by. That's five now in the Alex Ovechkin era, starting with the Game 7 loss to Philadelphia in 2008. The one Saturday night at Madison Square Garden might hurt more than any of them, though, because this time the Caps played The Right Way for a solid month — winning playoff hockey. Unlike past seasons, there wasn't a single game they weren't present and accounted for. Published May 13, 2012