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Showing posts from January, 2014

Jenny Dell and Will Middlebrooks

Much has been made about Jerry Remy's return to NESN but what about Jenny Dell? In case you did not know, it appears pretty official that Jenny Dell is now dating Will Middlebrooks. These tweets and pictures over New Year's Eve show that pretty clearly.
Had a BLAST w/ @awesomealimac@MelissaRae_K@jessicagaynor@MichaelWacha@JOlson62@middlebrooks & more!
— Jenny Dell (@JennyDellNESN) January 1, 2014
Happy New Year from us to you! Here's to a great 2014!
— Will Middlebrooks (@middlebrooks) January 1, 2014 Then came this post from Fenway Pastoral and Jenny Dell's "scoop" that Will has been getting some work in at second base. While everyone was waiting to see if Jerry Remy would return to NESN the same question was being asked about Dell. Would the Red Sox and NESN really allow her to keep her current role while openly dating one of the players? The answer is no. Not long after the…

Why Chipper Jones is Better Than Derek Jeter

Chipper Jones has been in the news a lot lately. He almost burned down his house and all of Atlanta last week and this week he played hero by rescuing Freddie Freeman from the Atlanta snow/ice storm. I found it kind of comical since Freddie was one of the spineless Braves who went along with the idea of boycotting Chipper's first pitch ceremony during the playoffs. The mascot of the Braves ended up catching Chipper's first pitch as the rest of the gutless wonders sulked. Chipper was asked for his prediction on the series and he was honest with his opinion while still showing support for his Braves. This wasn't good enough and the team decided that nobody would catch his first pitch. I bet Freddie was happy Chipper didn't wait for the Braves mascot to go out and get him. I lost respect for the 25 guys in that dugout and the guy who is supposedly leading them, Fredi Gonzalez. Of course Fredi was probably preoccupied with how he was going to use Craig Kimbrel in the most …

Field of Dreams II: The Black Sox and the PED Users

Andrew Martin writes a terrific blog called The Baseball Historian. If you have not checked it out yet, do yourself a favor and take a visit. It was on this blog that I stumbled upon this piece on Chick Gandil. The post is titled Chick Gandil's Side of the Story and it breaks down an interview that Gandil gave to Sports Illustrated in 1956.

 The Black Sox and their story has been portrayed in two of my favorite movies, Eight Men Out and of course Field of Dreams. Eight Men Out makes you feel awful for Buck Weaver,and pretty bad for Joe Jackson, Eddie Cicotte and Lefty Williams. Field of Dreams makes you want to picket on the streets of Cooperstown in honor of Shoeless Joe. Do these movies give an accurate description of what really happened?

The interview with Gandil along with other research doesn't put Jackson and Weaver in the best light. I did find it fascinating that the Black Sox may have been actually trying to win the 1919 series and double cross the gamblers. Res…

Jason Varitek's Wife Bashes Alex Rodriguez

Jonny Gomes is the latest to take a shot at Alex Rodriguez with this quote:

"He does steroids or whatever, it sucks. He does this or that, it sucks. He's always in the news, it sucks," the Red Sox left fielder told the Boston Herald. "But this is the players' union he's going against. It's all of us. Not a real good idea."

The lawsuit against the player’s union has not gone over well. It was reported that a group of players wanted AROD kicked out of the union.

A couple weeks earlier it was the lawyer for AROD who seemed to take a shot at David Ortiz on an ESPN radio interview. Joe Tacopino said he would not name other players accused of using performance enhancing drugs, “but some of them are God-like in Boston right now.”  The comments seemed to be clearly referencing Red Sox slugger David Ortiz.

Ortiz could not be reached for comment and Tacopina would later email the Boston Globe and deny he was alluding to Ortiz with his comments, but would not say…

David Ortiz is Not Frank Thomas

Frank Thomas was elected to the Hall of Fame on Wednesday and for some it meant an omen that David Ortiz will one day be elected.

This article states that the election of longtime DH Frank Thomas paves the way for Ortiz.

This left me scratching my head. I never really consider Frank Thomas as a longtime DH. I know he played DH but to me I think of Frank Thomas in his prime, winning MVPs, playing first base and for a time being the right handed Ted Williams.

I decided to head over to Baseball Reference to do a little research and here is what I came up with:

Frank Thomas was in fact a DH longer than I thought he was. 58% of his career was made up of him being the DH. This did surprise me. Over the course of his career, Frank Thomas had six seasons where he played first base more than 81 games. Two of those seasons he logged over 150 games at first base. He would end up playing 971 games at first base in his career.

Thomas was a DH more than I originally thought but he still play…

2014 Hall of Fame Ballot

The goal when determining my Hall of Fame Ballot was to be objective with some subjectivity thrown in.

I am a Bill James guy, love the numbers and a self proclaimed baseball nerd. I realize that these numbers are not perfect but they are much better than the natural biases that we all have. The sabermetrics should confirm what you see and if they don’t then you need to take a closer look as to why. Often times they don’t match up because of that bias. The best example is Derek Jeter and his fielding. You see him make the jump throw on ESPN or diving into the stands against the Red Sox and you are led to believe he is a great defensive SS. The numbers, without bias, tell us he has been pretty average defensively for most of his career and a liability the last few years.
With that in mind, I focused on a couple of numbers when trying to determine who should make the Hall of Fame from this 2014 ballot.
The first number I looked at was the Bill James Hall of Career Standards (JHCS). As I men…

Previewing The Garnet Bowl: Making Fun of Clemson and Ohio State

It has been fun watching Clemson fans and Ohio State fan trash talk each other over twitter. The trash talk tends to take this pattern:

"You are overrated, play in a joke of a conference and play a terrible schedule"- Buckeye Fan

"NO! You are overrated, play in a joke of a conference and play a terrible schedule"- Clemson Fan

For once, both fan bases are correct.

Both fan bases have so much in common that they should be fast friends. They both are truly overrated, both play in a joke of a conference and play a terrible schedule. They also have issues beating the Gamecocks. Combined, both teams have a current seven game losing streak to the Gamecocks. This truly should be called the Garnet Bowl.

The Big Ten and ACC are also true mirror images of each other. One dominates in lacrosse, the other in ice hockey, while both are awful in football.

I lived in Ohio for two years so I have a unique perspective on this game. I hate both fan bases but in Clemson's defense, I hat…