Revenge of the Nerds
I did some quick reading this morning. Real nerdy stuff. Here’s what’s worth passing on:
- The Padres made a trade on Saturday. Let’s see: one of the better center field prospects in the game (who the Marlins look like they’re quasi-giving up on) for a couple of young middle relievers who just threw a combined 80 jillion innings? Everyone not named Tony Gwynn, Jr. should like that deal. Webb and Mujica both had really good years last year, but middle relievers are so volatile from year to year that it’s worth it to sell high and grab a guy who can (at the very least) run down fly balls in the cow pasture that is Petco Park outfield. And if our old pal Randy Ready can get Maybin to make more consistent contact, the Padres could have a steal.
- If you’re keeping score of who has fleeced whom lately, you’ll remember that the Tigers got Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis from the Marlins for Maybin, Andrew Miller, Mike Rabelo, Eugelio De La Cruz, Dallas Trahern and Burke Badenhop. Maybin, Miller and Badenhop were the only guys who played for the Marlins this year at all. Miller just got dumped to the Red Sox so the Marlins wouldn’t have to pay his high-draft-pick salary. The Marlins traded Cabrera for money reasons, but you have to get better prospects back than that. And Florida STILL went 80-82 this year. It’s a miracle.
- I love trade lineages. Mostly thanks to the time the Indians got Cliff Lee, Brandon Phillips and Grady Sizemore from the Expos for Big Fat Bartolo Colon.
- Speaking of the Expos and trades, I saw an hour-long special about the Expos on MLB Network this weekend. It was excellent. Montreal couldn’t pay Delino DeShields so they trade him to the Dodgers for Pedro Martinez, who Tom Lasorda thought was too skinny to be a reliable MLB starter. Oops. When Pedro and the Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, he said in a post-game interview that he wanted to share that championship with the fans of Montreal who never got a chance to win one. The strike of 1994 wiped out what could’ve been “the year” for the Expos.
- New Padres hitting coordinator Sean Berry played on those Expos teams. Is it creepy that I’m kind of pumped to ask him about it?
- Abner Doubleday still didn’t invent baseball. The the story that made people think he was is pretty ridiculous and shows that the dreaded “revisionist history” is nothing new. Alexander Cartwright was probably closer to deserving that distinction, if any one person does.
- I don’t have a degree in astrophysics so I don’t completely understand what they mean, but minor-league park factors came out. Basically if your numbers are far away from 1.00, your ballpark is either a pitcher’s park or a hitter’s park. Looks like Parkview Field plays fairly straight-up; the 2010 numbers could lead you to believe it’s a little hitter-friendly but not homer-friendly (lots of doubles). I think that’s thanks to three things: (1) there are some high walls here, (2) many Class-A hitters haven’t fully matured yet physically and (3) most hitters at this level don’t put the barrel on the ball consistently enough. I’d be interested to see the numbers next year, since it’ll have data from three years at the new park.
- If you were stuck watching the Colts beat the Bengals yesterday (boring), you missed the Browns looking like a real NFL team against the Jets. They should’ve won, which would’ve been consecutive wins against the Saints, Patriots and Jets with a rookie quarterback and a bunch of no-namers.
- The highlight of my weekend, though, was watching the end of the Jaguars-Texans game and Gus Johnson’s head blowing up. Hurry up and check it out before it gets taken down.
- Highlight #2: Tried a Pumpkin Pie Blizzard from Dairy Queen on Saturday. Holy cow was it good. According to DQ’s signs, they have real bits of pumpkin pie in them. They’ve also done studies, you know. Sixty percent of the time, they work every time.
Musical guest… Huey Lewis and the News!