Tuesday, September 28, 2010

SweetSpot Roundup 9/28

The B-List Indians Blog: B-List Lite
A treatise on cut fastballs.

Pro Ball NW (Mariners): Prospect Performance in the Majors
Conor is thoroughly underwhelmed at the performance of the youngsters the M's have brought up this season.

Baseball Time in Arlington (Rangers): Grant and the Gut
Everybody's got the FJM spirit after the crew's inspiring turn on Deadspin last week.  Joey looks at a yet another anti-stats article by a columnist who doesn't get how stats inform, but don't replace, decision making.

The Ray Area: One last word on attendance...
Mark compares the meteoric rise of the Rays with the steady build of the Buccaneers as an explanation as to why Tampa can't seem to draw a crowd.  That said, TCM's money is on a) the increased availability of games on TV and b) people being very careful about spending their discretionary income.  TCM's had his current job for almost two years, but he's still clipping coupons and looking for free stuff to do on the weekends with The Uncommon Wife and The Boy.  Plus, with everything we've read recently, it sounds like The Trop Experience is truly dreadful aside from the baseball.

Fire Brand of the American League (Red Sox): Ryan Kalish and the 2011 club
The conundrum of Ryan Kalish: "Forcing him onto the big league roster could stunt his development, keeping him from reaching his sky-high potential. Therefore, both the Sox and Kalish would be best served by sending him to AAA and where he could take a half- or a full-season to develop at the plate." but "With Cameron and Ellsbury’s well-documented injury problems, the Sox will need to employ a reliable fourth outfielder who can fill in quite regularly — much like a 6th man in basketball; an extension of the starting lineup."  Tough choice.

Royals Authority: Mike Aviles Stakes His Claim
Mike Aviles can't get any love in Kansas City, but should probably be the 2011 2B anyway.

Nick's Twins Blog: Obvious Priorities
The eternal question: go all out to secure home field advantage or rest everyone to ensure they're ready to go in October?  Nick's got the right answer.

Sox Machine (White Sox): White Sox improve road results...but how?
Jim digs into the Sox' success on the road and finds the reason for it might be the Sox much-maligned bullpen.

It's About the Money, Stupid: In Which I Defend the Steinbrenner Memorial
"The bottom line is that Steinbrenner was different than those guys, in that he wasn’t a player or a manager. So giving him his own monument, in a distinct style, is a sort of fitting tribute. And at the end of the day, that’s probably what this is; not really a monument, certainly not a plaque, but a tribute. It’s ok if you don’t like it, but it would be nice if some of the national “debate” over it would acknowledge a bit more that there are people, Yankees fans, that do like it."

View from the Bleachers (Cubs): Good Call -- Part II
The second of a series celebrating trades that actually worked out for the Cubs. This one features something I'd forgotten about perhaps my all-time favorite player, The Rat (and my all-time favorite photo of said player).

Redleg Nation: This Day in Reds History: It's September...
Even if you couldn't possibly care less about the Reds, it's worth making Redleg Nation a daily read for these "this day in history" posts. Steve comes up with some pretty obscure stuff, which (for a real baseball history geek like me) is the best kind of stuff there is.

Austin's Astros 290 Blog: Astros stay put in power rankings after horrible week
Austin accuses the ESPN voters of phoning it in, but (as per usual) saves his harshest criticism for Brad Mills.

Dodger Thoughts: Ten things to watch for in the Dodgers' final week
And yeah, they really are pretty interesting: Kershaw's pursuit of (sub-)3.00, Torre's pursuit of (sub-)2,000, and more!

Disciples of Uecker (Brewers): Brewers bring back DiFelice
"This may not be the most exciting move ever, but it does mean that there could be one more important piece in the 2011 Brewers bullpen."

Mets Today: Bark In The Park Tonight
"Your dog probably has no idea how bad the Mets are this year, and unlike most fans would therefore be overjoyed to go to the ballgame tonight vs. the Brewers."

Crashburn Alley (Phillies): Time to worry about Polly?
Placido Polanco has been struggling mightily, is probably hurt, and Bill thinks it's time to give him a little break.

Ducksnorts (Padres): Fourth and inches
"Ludwick seems like a good guy, but his 'I’ll get there when I get there' approach to playing right field doesn’t work at Petco Park." Also, various other Padres notes.

Nationals Baseball: It's the best day of the week, Nats fans!
Lannan day! Just a teeeeeensy bit less exciting than Strasmas. Also, this week's Lannan Day went like this: 5.2 IP, 4 ER. But I'm a big fan of any reason for a Nats fan to get even a little bit excited, this time of year.

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