Friday, January 28, 2011

SweetSpot Roundup 1/28

The Common Man is gone for the weekend, so...more fun! Last time I was left to my own devices, I did everything in exactly eight words. This time, every summary starts and ends with the same letter. That may even mean I end a sentence or two with a preposition, but that's a sacrifice I'm willing to make for you.

The View from the Bleachers (Cubs): Five Questions on the 2011 Season
How many steals for Starlin Castro? Also, more fantasy-based questions, on Aramis Ramirez, Brett Jackson and such.

Redleg Nation: It's a good time to be a Reds fan
So Jay Bruce is apparently a really good guy. So is Chad Cordero, which is good, because he's not all that great anymore at throwing baseballs Good lord. People, don't ever drink and link. Why on earth would I have thought this was about not-even-a-former-Red Chad Cordero and not actual-current-Red Francisco Cordero? I really have completely lost my senses.

Austin's Astros 290 Blog: Astros get bargain on Wandy's extension
That's probably true, but is Zito really the benchmark to compare him against?

Dodger Thoughts: Will James Loney turn his doubles into home runs?
No, after looking at this list of guys who have hit lots of homers but relatively few home runs, I really don't think he can.

Disciples of Uecker (Brewers): Miller Park's New Scoreboard, Looking Good!
Yes, it certainly is. Jack created a .gif of the pictures of the installation of the new big screen, which is huge and fancy.

Mets Today: 19 DUPACR: Anthony Young
Anthony Young is one of the most interesting players in history. "Lost" 27 games in a row while posting a 3.89 ERA.

Crashburn Alley (Phillies): Comparing the Phillies' and Giants' Rotations
The Giants' is good, but Bill finds (and this Bill agrees) that the Phillies' is better, and by a lot.

Ducksnorts (Padres): Cantu Hear Me Knocking?
Padres sign Cantu. I think Geoff overstates Cantu's ability to play defense of any kind at all at any position, but $850K is a nice price for a bench bat with some pop.

Bay City Ball (Giants): WAR Bubbles for First-Round Pitchers
Some graphs of the Giants' pitching draft picks' performances.

Fire Brand of the AL (Red Sox): It's Time to Lay Off Jonathan Papelbon
Everybody, Darryl says, needs to stop worrying and learn to love the Jon Papelbon era before it's over. I'd agree (especially about the sports radio silliness), but getting that huge undeserved salary off the books will be nice.

Royals Authority: SABR in KC
Tomorrow is SABR day everywhere, and the event in Kansas City promises to be pretty great, including our own Craig and Nick, along with Jeff Passan, fresh off that great Voros McCracken article. I myself will be heading up to Milwaukee, to hear a presentation by our friend Lar and perhaps, rumor has it, Doug Melvin (I'm not a SABR member, yet, and it's my understanding that part of the point of this day is to attract non-members). You should definitely check out your own local event.

Nick's Twins Blog: Kevin Slowey: Know When to Hold 'Em
Nick brings a little enthusiasm into a dour offseason with the affordable arbitration-avoiding signing of Slowey. "Still only 26, he seems like a prime candidate to have a breakout year, recapturing and building on his success from the '08 season."

It's About the Money, Stupid (Yankees): My evening with Don Mattingly and Brian Leetch
A bunch of the IATMS guys and friends got to attend a Q&A with those two guys (I admit, I had to look Leetch up; former star in some weird ice-based sport with which I'm not very familiar). Jason has the story, and was very active with his Flip camera.

Baseballin' On a Budget (Athletics): Top Fives: Best Right Fielders in Team History
It's funny how quickly these lists drop off, almost any team and any position you look at. Not that Wally Moses, Socks Seybold and Elmer Valo were bad players or anything, but it's a long way from them to Reggie and Canseco. Know what's a great word? Teriyaki.

Pro Ball NW (Mariners): The Best Player In Baseball
Great work by Jon, who looks at the leader in WAR (and second- and third-best) over five year periods all the way back through history and then comes up with an all time progression of how one might say the title was passed down. Pretty fascinating.

The Ray Area: Take me out with the crowd
Mark responds to a writer who opined that watching a game in HDTV is better than attending one live, and ends (Mark does) by inviting that writer to a ballgame. I don't remember what life was like without my HDTV, and I don't want to...but I'd also rather be at the game, and can definitely see where Mark is coming from.

Baseball Time in Arlington (Rangers): Dazed and Confused
"This is not really an analysis of that deal [for Napoli], however.  This is about trying to make sense of what the Rangers are doing in general. And failing to make sense of it."

Ghostrunner on First (Blue Jays): Stuck Between Stations
Excellent analysis of the Vernon Wells trade and what it means for the franchise in the big picture.

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