Archive for the ‘links’ Category

Links of the Week or So

July 15, 2009

I had big plans for today’s post, but paying work gets in the way again. I did sort of try to watch the big non-exhibition exhibition game while I was doing said work. And I’m told it was a good game, but without being invested in it, I kind of missed all the interesting stuff, I think. I came away from it with the feeling that it was terribly boring. I didn’t think at the time that the ball Crawford caught was going to clear the fence, but even if it was, it didn’t strike me as that great a catch. A very nice one to be sure, but Crawford, phenomenal outfielder that he is, makes a better catch than that just about every day of the season. MVP material, really? Maybe that’s why I came away disappointed–no real standout performances. I would’ve loved to see Pujols go all hey-I’m-the-best-right-handed-hitter-you’ve-ever-seen on everybody in his home park. But anyway.

  • Topical and timely! It’s a transcript of what the Sotomayor hearings would be like if they were conducted by the 1977 Royals instead of the SJC. It’s…funny. Not terribly coherent, but funny. I can’t decide if it would help one’s appreciation of it to know more or less about the players involved. And it took me a while to realize he meant “the members of the 1977 Kansas City Royals, but in the present day, armed with their personal experiences of the past 32 years,” not just the team straight out of ’77 from like a time warp or something. Anyway, it’s an experience.
  • Also timely, at least as of yesterday! wezen-ball’s look at best players never to be All-Stars. I’d still say Tim Salmon or Kirk Gibson has to top the list; it depends on where you come down on the whole peak vs. career thing. Shouldn’t we weigh peak even more than usual when you’re considering stuff like this, since if a guy’s had some really big years, it’s that much more of a surprise that he wasn’t an All-Star? That said, though, Tony Phillips was a really solid player too, and I’m sure he deserved at least a couple nods. One of the few utility players who could really play any of the five or six positions you could put him in, and an ideal leadoff hitter (for what I’m looking for, anyway).
  • I might’ve failed in my quest to complete Minerva’s poetry challenge last week, but look! This week’s? Already done, baby! Funny thing is, we didn’t plan that. She was planning to do that type of poem anyway.
  • More interesting stuff from Tango: Jamie Moyer = Jack Morris. Almost exactly, as of today. And yet, one of those guys is kind of a running “old guy” joke while the other will probably end up in the Hall three or four years from now. I was kind of proud of my snarky comment to that post, I have to admit.
  • This Dayton Moore quote has finally convinced me that the Royals are trying to be tragically, snobbily, pathetically hilarious. The haughty ineptitude is too perfectly executed to be real. In other news, I don’t really understand the pleading rules of our court system, and as an attorney, I don’t see why I should have to. Next time I’m asked to file an answer to a complaint, I’m going to scrawl “DINT DO IT” in crayon on the back of an old receipt with my right (non-dominant) hand and mail it to the judge. My bosses would be cool with that, right?

I wish that this were a Royals shirt. Or Dayton Moore himself. But anyway, it’s what I think of whenever people are being both incredibly stupid and incredibly self-aggrandizing or condescending:

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Link of the Week or So: Navel-Gazing Division

July 9, 2009

Not much to say today.

But I’ve finally stumbled upon the single most appropriate (and appropriately inexpensive) BBREF player page to be the first one sponsored by this blog! (I mean, who else but me has ever put him on the all-time anything team?)

I haven’t been much of a self-promoter re. this blog, especially lately. Part of that is just who I am, and part is that I’m not convinced I’m doing anything worth promoting. As much as I love and appreciate all my current readers, I’m really just sitting here once a day and jotting down whatever pops into my head. I think it’s the knowledge that I could definitely do a lot better if I put in (or had) the time to really polish it and think about exactly what it is I want to say. I don’t know that I need hundreds of people to read my second-best.

On the other hand, maybe seeking more traffic will inspire me to actually do better somehow. And in either case, I’ll definitely do more of these; not only is it about the most targeted marketing possible, but it’s a way to support the best website in the world (not that they seem to need all that much support anymore). Let me know if you happen to stumble across any more particularly appropriate, unsponsored pages…

Links of the Week or So

June 28, 2009

I can’t find a whole lot worth talking about right now, so how about reading stuff from people who can?

  • Frequent commenter tHeMARksMiTh always does great work and has had, I think, a particularly great week, but I thought his writeup on the career of Hank Greenberg was the highlight.
  • Non-Baseball Division: Bethany over at one of my favorite sites in the whole series of tubes, The “Blog” of “Unnecessary” Quotation Marks, finally got around to posting something I had sent her way back sometime before this blog even began. Turns out it had been posted on that site before, but that’s hardly my problem. I thought this submission was a better one anyway, but that one didn’t make the cut (or just skipped her attention) somehow. Oh well.
  • Ron Rollins wrote about agents in Japanese baseball, and pretty much everything there is something really interesting that I didn’t know. You might guess from my Strasburg rant that I’m not really behind the idea that baseball agents are “the devil” (well, maybe Boras), but it’s an interesting topic.
  • Obligatory Dave Cameron Article Division: this week, Dave points out that Juan Pierre hasn’t been doing such a good Manny impression lately. I think that what I like about Cameron’s stuff (when I’m not disagreeing with him completely, which has been happening more often lately) is that he’s really good at pointing out flaws in the common wisdom that, once he’s pointed them out, seem like the kind of things we all should have noticed already. I mean, you knew he wasn’t going to keep hitting .400, but why haven’t we already heard that he’s been that bad for the last month or so?
  • Know how the other day I wondered how often one starting pitcher in a game was twice the age of the other? Well, lar at wezen-ball went to the trouble of figuring it out.
  • Joe Mauer has, inevitably, slowed down; he’s stopped homering, which is the worrisome part, but his batting average has also dropped below .400. David Pinto says his odds of hitting .400 (as of Saturday morning, I suppose) are 1 in 275 or 1 in 1235, depending on…something. I honestly don’t understand it at all. But it’s Mauer, so it’s interesting.
  • This seriously stretches the definition of “week or so,” but the most recent post on Recondite Baseball has info on one of my favorite topics, the Three True Outcomes. No surprise that Dunn shows up at the top of the list, though he’s keeping the spot warm for when Jack Cust hits 3000 PA. I haven’t talked about Recondite Baseball, and I don’t even remember how I came across it, but the one or two posts Theron makes over there a month are always worth reading.

That’s about all I’ve got I’m sure there’ll be something to say tomorrow.

Loose Ends

May 29, 2009

Just a few comments following up on some recent posts:

  • Remember last week when I wrote the piece about Andy Sonnanstine being forced to hit for himself and I wondered why it was okay for Longoria to be brought in to play 3B later in the game despite having been on the lineup card when the game started? Well, turns out it wasn’t. Umpiring fail.
  • This blog may be cursed. I profiled the four surprisingly hot teams after the first couple weeks of the season, and they almost all immediately (if predictably) went into the tank. I wrote about how all of them but the Mariners had been struggling since then, and one of them, the Padres, immediately got crazy hot again, while the M’s tanked. I wrote about the upstart Jays in the same post, and then they tanked. And now, since my post about Joe Mauer’s incredible first 100 PA on Tuesday morning, he’s gone 1-for-10, the 1 being just a single, with two walks and three strikeouts. Not a whole lot to go on, I know, but I’m hoping that my mentioning it again just nips that one in the bud straight away, since it seems to work both ways.
  • Just in case the curse is real: boy, that Steve Phillips seems to be doing well for himself these days, doesn’t he?
  • If you don’t make a habit of looking at the comments: commenter abywaters explained the Bill James/Jeff Bagwell “Pass.” mystery, at least to my satisfaction, in the comments to the Bagwell/Thomas post. Several other interesting comments down there, too.
  • Speaking of, I opened the same BagPipes v. Big Hurt discussion on a message board at Imagine Sports’ Diamond Mind Online game (a fantastically addictive and highly recommended game if you’re a hopeless baseball history nerd like me), and there were a lot of interesting insights, but the one thing that came out of it that I really wished I had noticed before I posted the other day was this:

    Thomas on the road, career:
    .297/.414/.511, .925 OPS
    Bagwell on the road, career: .291/.398/.521, .919 OPS

    Wow. I mean, Thomas is still the better hitter, since I’d rather have the 16 points of OBP than the 10 (or even 16) points of SLG, and you never know about the difference in competition or whatever, but wow! Incidentally, despite playing most of his home games in the cavernous Astrodome, Bagwell was much better than that at home…just not nearly as much better as Thomas was at his home.
    A couple of the guys at IS made some interesting points in Thomas’ favor, but all in all, since the post went up on Wednesday morning, I’ve become more and more comfortable with my conclusion that Bagwell was the better player.

  • The Common Man had a much more thorough Memorial Day post than the one I could muster, and, I thought, a great one. But I just want to stress again that everybody needs to be familiar with the story of Lou Brissie.
  • More confirmation that (a) David Eckstein has made a deal with the Devil and/or (b) Kevin Towers has lost his freaking mind: “As great a year as Adrian and Heath have had, I think Eckstein might be our MVP.” Sigh.
  • Finally, not actually related to a prior post on here, but friend of the blog Jason from IIATMS has started a new blog, Vote for Manny, at which he encourages people to, um, vote for Manny. Sounds crazy, but read his explanation at the site (posted on Wednesday). Intriguing stuff, at the very least. And now just like that, he’s all famous and stuff. I honestly don’t know how I feel about the idea, and for different reasons than most people would probably expect — I did vote for Manny once already, though, just for being undecided — but Jason’s initiative is pretty impressive.

Links of the Week or So and Notes

May 20, 2009

Work dictates a quick one today, a few notes (some of them very old, but interesting…at least to me):

  • Something is seriously wrong with Scott Baker. I mean, his numbers aren’t good, but he’s not just a little tweak away. He’s not even close. You notice these things when you’re stuck watching the White Sox feed of the game, but can’t stand to listen to The Hawk, so you put the Twins’ radio broadcast on, which is just a second or two ahead of your TV. When on just about every other pitch you watch Redmond set up high and away at the exact same time as you’re hearing Dazzle Dan say “…and that’s down and in,” it really drives home how far off Baker is right now.
  • A while back I wrote about the Yankees putting Chien-Ming Wang on the DL with what looked to me like a pretty obviously made-up injury. Craig pointed out about a week ago now that Dontrelle Willis basically admitted his was made up, and Craig has a lot of the same questions I did. Some unintentionally comedic comments below, too.
  • Speaking of Wang, he says he’s ready and is expected to rejoin the rotation soon. He’s looked pretty good in AAA, too. Of course, given his 34.50 ERA to start the year, he could go on a Zack Greinke-like 38-inning scoreless streak and his ERA would still sit at 4.70, almost exactly league average. I have a feeling he’s going to struggle again, but maybe that’s just wishful thinking. And he could hardly help but be better than he was.
  • A few more things I left off yesterday’s post on the 2005 prospect lists that I found interesting, all about the Baseball America Top 100 this time: Ian Kinsler was #98 on BA’s list, 77 places below BP’s. Russell Martin was #89. Only four second basemen made the list (Kinsler and Aaron Hill were shortstops back then): the ill-fated Rickie Weeks (8), the even iller-fated Josh Barfield (45), the “meh” Chris Burke (60), and the then 30 year old Tadahito Iguchi (96) all had considerably brighter futures than ROY-MVP Dustin Pedroia.