Recent Comments by grum@work

Giants Win World Series

bender: My comment about not fixing their reputation or being remembered for only that was a bit of satire, considering who it was that got caught stealing in 1926...

I get the feeling that if they had sent Gordon home, he might have made it because of the crazy KC karma that had carried them from not making the playoffs to making them to coming from behind in the wild-card game to getting them past "better" teams like the Angels and Orioles, to pushing it to Game 7...

I kind of wish they had tried. There have been many amazing "rolling the dice" chances that have created epic playoff moments:

posted by grum@work at 12:23 PM on October 30

Giants Win World Series

I'm not sure that you could even fault the 3rd base coach for making the wrong call (given the likelihood of an out) and sending Gordon

If he's safe, or out on a bang-bang play, then it's a good call by the 3rd base coach/player.

If he's out by 10+ feet, then you wear the goat horns on your head for the rest of your life, just like this idiot did when he made the final out in the World Series by getting caught stealing 2nd base! Nobody can ever fix their reputation after something like that happens. Seriously, it's all he'll ever be remembered for...

posted by grum@work at 10:49 AM on October 30

Giants Win World Series

Here is the statcast of Gordon running around the bases in the 9th inning. From this, you can pretty much tell that he didn't really have an option of trying to score on the play, despite the misplay by Blanco and the bobble by Juan Perez. Even if he's running full out from 2nd to 3rd, Crawford's throw would have beaten him by 20 feet or so.

Given how Bumgarner was pitching, and how Sal Perez was hitting, maybe you take that chance anyways and hope for a bad throw/catch....

posted by grum@work at 08:36 AM on October 30

Giants Win World Series

If, you're like me, you wonder to yourself....

"What was Barry Bonds doing after SF won the World Series?"

Well, here is your answer.

posted by grum@work at 08:28 AM on October 30

Giants Win World Series

While Bumgarner was easily the World Series MVP, this poor Chevy executive is the World Series LVP (Least Valuable Pitchman):

That was just about as bad a TV appearance as you can get.

posted by grum@work at 08:20 AM on October 30

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

This Bumgarner kid...he's pretty amazing.

posted by grum@work at 10:54 PM on October 29

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

"A woman's place is in the kitchen and not on a football field."

posted by grum@work at 12:04 PM on October 29

What's in a shirt?

FFP my a55! That difference is enough to have four or five next level of quality higher players, and makes me wonder how any club can hope to break into the top six other than one of the big boys falling down (such as ManU last season and Liverpool the season before).

I have to believe that Manchester United has a much bigger operating budget (outside of player contracts) than a lot of those teams. Not enough to make up the difference, but it'll eat a large chunk.

posted by grum@work at 11:15 AM on October 29

What's in a shirt?

Oh, that's a REALLY pretty web presentation of the information. I, too, would like a nice breakdown of the data in a table.

They have a link to buy a kit at an online store at the start of the article, but not on each screen where they show the kits themselves. That should have been an obvious design decision.

Notes about the kits themselves:

  • Liverpool's third jersey is far too busy/confusing with the criss-crossing stripes and colours.
  • Southhampton manufacture their own kits, and have a different sponsor for home/away? That's...interesting.
  • I like that Swansea away jersey with the black/red contrast.
  • I'm surprised every team doesn't have a "third jersey", just for the possibility of added sales.
  • Raised collars you can pop? Pass. Just the simple v-neck collar, thanks.

I would like to see this done for all of the teams in all of the sports in all of the countries. It'll make hunting for my next jersey in my collection much easier.

posted by grum@work at 11:13 AM on October 29

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle


Top of 9th inning, Hunter Pence hits a game-tying hit with two out.
Top of 11th inning, Hunter Pence hits a home run to give the Giants the lead.
Bottom of 11th inning, Hunter Pence dives to catch a two-out, bases loaded, sinking liner to save the game.

Hunter Pence, the living legend, begins tonight.

posted by grum@work at 08:15 AM on October 29

Denver Broncos Fan Disappears During Game

That's messed up.

Did he fall down some unused maintenance shaft? Kidnapped? Ran away to a second life?

posted by grum@work at 10:11 PM on October 27

Top Cardinals Prospect Oscar Tavares Killed in Car Accident

For some, this was Tavares' first introduction to MLB fans (during a pre-season game).

And here is probably the highlight of his career, just this month:

posted by grum@work at 08:39 AM on October 27

Top Cardinals Prospect Oscar Tavares Killed in Car Accident

If the Cardinals make it to the World Series, he isn't in the Dominican Republic for this to happen.

In the minors, he had all the makings of a star outfielder, like a lite version of Andrew McCutchen. If he filled up his frame with a bit more muscle (which he had a lot of time to do, being only 22 years old), then he would have been one of the stars of the (inevitable) next NLCS Cardinals team.

posted by grum@work at 08:11 AM on October 27

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

That's the second NFL player to go down with a leaping celebration. You'd think they'd learn...

posted by grum@work at 04:26 PM on October 26

Steve Nash’s transcendent career has come to a close

Obviously the best Canadian basketball player of all time, and the primary reason* that we've seen an influx of Canadian players in March Madness (and then in the NBA).

It's interesting that Steve Nash's career ends just as Nik Stauskas' career is about to begin.

*Along with the introduction of the Toronto Raptors.

posted by grum@work at 12:37 PM on October 24

9 reasons Hunter Pence is the most interesting man in the World (Series).

Okay, I give up. I'm officially a fan of Hunter Pence. I'm cheering for the Royals, but I'd probably be just as happy to see Pence hold up the trophy...and then drop it on his foot.

posted by grum@work at 01:02 AM on October 24

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

The danger of small sample size can be found in Giants pitcher Hunter Strickland.

Regular season:
9 games, 7 innings pitched, 5 singles given up, 0.00 ERA

Result: "This dude is awesome! He's gonna anchor our bullpen in the playoffs!"

Post season:
6 games, 5.1 innings pitched, 5 home runs given up, 10.13 ERA

Result: "This dude is Narveson-esque! He's dragged down our bullpen like an anchor in these playoffs!"

posted by grum@work at 01:34 PM on October 23

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Peyton Manning just keeps on rolling, and the St. Louis Rams bust out some "EA Madden" plays.

posted by grum@work at 12:54 AM on October 20

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

So the Dolphins beat the Patriots and folks said they were clearly in decline. The Dolphins beat the Raiders and they fired their coach. The Dolphins beat the Bears and there was apparently a fight in the Bears locker room.

I'm not sure how to feel about this.

It reminds me of a few years ago where (I think) three teams fired their coaches after losing to the Maple Leafs. (I think it was also the same season where the Leafs played against an inordinate number of backup goalies.)

posted by grum@work at 12:36 AM on October 20

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

I think Hoffy was especially bad in games played in Arizona under a waxing moon and where his brother was a base coach.

Sorry, I was out of the house most of yesterday night and this morning.

Glenn Hoffman was a base coach for the San Diego Padres from 2006-present.
Trevor Hoffman played for the Padres during that time (1993-2008), so there is a three season window we have to examine (2006-2008).
Here are all the games in Arizona during that time where Hoffman pitched.
It's not that hard to find the state of the moon at any time in history.

Games in Arizona under a waxing moon while his brother was a base coach:
August 30, 2006
September 30, 2006
October 1, 2006
April 24, 2007
April 25, 2007
July 5, 2008

6 games, 5.0 innings pitched, 9.00 ERA, 5 saves, 1 blown save, 1 loss.

*drops mic*

posted by grum@work at 02:21 PM on October 18

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Howard_T: You'll like the video at the top of this article.

posted by grum@work at 08:31 AM on October 18

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

don't bother looking, grum

"Look, mister tiger, there is a big juicy antelope flank just hanging from that hook over there. But don't you dare take it, you silly cat!"

Trevor Hoffman
Behind: .633 OPS
Tie game: .656 OPS
Ahead: .589 OPS

Career: .609 OPS

So, he definitely did worse in tie game scenarios, but not so much it was worrisome.


Mariano Rivera
Behind: .595 OPS
Tie game: .655 OPS
Ahead: .528 OPS

Billy Wagner
Behind: .543 OPS
Tie game: .540 OPS
Ahead: .565 OPS

posted by grum@work at 03:15 PM on October 17

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

The reality was the A's were a fantastic team top to bottom and had a closer on perhaps the best run in history (which The Eck punctuated in perfect Eck style by remarking at the end of the year, "Let's see some other motherfucker do that!"1).

His 1990 season is definitely the contender for "best season by a modern closer".
The only other ones that I would put up there would be:

  • Fernando Rodney (2012) - higher ERA+ but more walks
  • Craig Kimbrel (2012) - less innings, but the lowest opposition OPS I've ever seen (.358) at that level of production.
  • Eric Gagne (2003) - more innings, insane opOPS (.374)*
  • Koji Uehara (2013) - same innings, lower WHIP, great opOPS (.400), but more HR

* My choice for the greatest "modern closer" season of all time, as those 14 extra appearances and 10 more innings are pretty important. Plus, he's Canadian. :)

posted by grum@work at 10:21 AM on October 17

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

The team's "closer" only seems to be used in a save situation. Is it something to do with the coach and the player trying to pad the closer's save stats?

It seems to be a "push-button managing" mentality where it is better to stick to some pattern and fail, than it is to try something new (or smart) and fail.

Since Tony LaRussa popularized the 9th inning "closer", who only comes in when the team is ahead by 1/2/3 runs to "close" the game, it seems that every manager needs to have a "closer" on their roster that they use the same way.

I'm sure the player likes having the stupid "save" stat padded (as they can then use it in arbitration negotiations or free agent contract talks), but other than moping about not being used for a save, the player really shouldn't have any say in it.

You would think that a manager/GM would break this cycle by utilizing their best pitchers in high leverage situations (tied in the bottom of the 9th is MUCH more important than ahead by 3 runs in the bottom of the 9th) and say to hell with the "save" stat. It would give them a better chance at winning more games AND would help reduce payroll costs because they don't feel the need to saddle themselves with an expensive "closer".

Here are a list of relief pitchers from just this season who could have easily played the role of a "closer" (> 20 saves) but were not used that way and were amazingly effective:

Rk              Player ERA+ SV   IP Age  Tm  ERA
1           Wade Davis  403  3 72.0  28 KCR 1.00
2        Aaron Sanchez  361  3 33.0  21 TOR 1.09
3          Drew Storen  340 11 56.1  26 WSN 1.12
4            Ken Giles  316  1 45.2  23 PHI 1.18
5         Dan Jennings  287  0 40.1  27 MIA 1.34
6       Kelvin Herrera  285  0 70.0  24 KCR 1.41
7      Dellin Betances  277  1 90.0  26 NYY 1.40
8         Neil Ramirez  266  3 43.2  25 CHC 1.44
9        Buddy Carlyle  243  0 31.0  36 NYM 1.45
10       Fernando Abad  238  0 57.1  28 OAK 1.57
11      Joaquin Benoit  225 11 54.1  36 SDP 1.49
12       Matt Thornton  224  0 36.0  37 TOT 1.75
13         Darren ODay  223  4 68.2  31 BAL 1.70
14         Tony Watson  219  2 77.1  29 PIT 1.63
15        Bryan Morris  207  0 64.1  27 TOT 1.82
16       Kyle Crockett  207  0 30.0  22 CLE 1.80
17    Santiago Casilla  204 19 58.1  33 SFG 1.70
18           Joe Smith  202 15 74.2  30 LAA 1.81
19       Neftali Feliz  198 13 31.2  26 TEX 1.99
20          Pat Neshek  197  6 67.1  33 STL 1.87
21          Jake McGee  197 19 71.1  27 TBR 1.89
22         Zach Putnam  197  6 54.2  26 CHW 1.98
23       Andrew Miller  192  1 62.1  29 TOT 2.02
24        Jared Hughes  183  0 64.1  28 PIT 1.96
25          A.J. Ramos  182  0 64.0  27 MIA 2.11
Rk              Player ERA+ SV   IP Age  Tm  ERA
26        Roman Mendez  181  0 33.0  23 TEX 2.18
27           Sam Dyson  179  0 42.0  26 MIA 2.14
28      Luke Gregerson  176  3 72.1  30 OAK 2.12
29      Tyler Clippard  174  1 70.1  29 WSN 2.18
30         Pedro Strop  173  2 61.0  29 CHC 2.21
31      Burke Badenhop  169  1 70.2  31 BOS 2.29
32       Dominic Leone  168  0 66.1  22 SEA 2.17
33          Joe Beimel  166  0 45.0  37 SEA 2.20
34           Dan Otero  163  1 86.2  29 OAK 2.28
35      Tom Wilhelmsen  161  1 79.1  30 SEA 2.27
36    Jonathan Broxton  160  7 58.2  30 TOT 2.30
37     Al Alburquerque  159  1 57.1  28 DET 2.51
38      Jeurys Familia  158  5 77.1  24 NYM 2.21
39        Blaine Hardy  158  0 39.0  27 DET 2.54
40      Brad Boxberger  158  2 64.2  26 TBR 2.37
41    Justin De Fratus  156  0 52.2  26 PHI 2.39
42           Zach Duke  155  0 58.2  31 MIL 2.45
43        Chad Jenkins  154  0 31.2  26 TOR 2.56
44      Jeremy Affeldt  152  0 55.1  35 SFG 2.28
45        Jason Frasor  150  0 47.1  36 TOT 2.66
46         J.P. Howell  147  0 49.0  31 LAD 2.39
47         Brett Cecil  145  5 53.1  27 TOR 2.70
48       Aaron Barrett  143  0 40.2  26 WSN 2.66
49         Dale Thayer  143  0 65.1  33 SDP 2.34
50         Cory Rasmus  142  0 56.0  26 LAA 2.57
Rk              Player ERA+ SV   IP Age  Tm  ERA
51         Sam Freeman  142  0 38.0  27 STL 2.61
52          Bryan Shaw  142  2 76.1  26 CLE 2.59
53      Shawn Tolleson  142  0 71.2  26 TEX 2.76
54       Evan Marshall  139  0 49.1  24 ARI 2.74
55        Kevin Jepsen  139  2 65.0  29 LAA 2.63
56     Jeremy Jeffress  138  0 32.0  26 TOT 2.81
57      T.J. McFarland  138  0 58.2  25 BAL 2.76
58     Anthony Varvaro  137  0 54.2  29 ATL 2.63
59      Danny Farquhar  137  1 71.0  27 SEA 2.66
60      Brandon League  136  0 63.0  31 LAD 2.57
61      Yoervis Medina  136  0 57.0  25 SEA 2.68
62      Junichi Tazawa  136  0 63.0  28 BOS 2.86
63           Vic Black  136  0 34.2  26 NYM 2.60
64   Kevin Quackenbush  135  6 54.1  25 SDP 2.48
65    Marc Rzepczynski  135  1 46.0  28 CLE 2.74
66          Jean Machi  134  2 66.1  32 SFG 2.58
67      Scott Atchison  134  2 72.0  38 CLE 2.75
68         Javy Guerra  134  1 46.1  28 CHW 2.91
69       Jake Petricka  131 14 73.0  26 CHW 2.96
70         Adam Warren  130  3 78.2  26 NYY 2.97
71        Oliver Perez  130  0 58.2  32 ARI 2.91
72     Eury De La Rosa  130  0 36.2  24 ARI 2.95
73        Tommy Hunter  128 11 60.2  27 BAL 2.97
74       James Russell  127  1 57.2  28 TOT 2.97
75         Seth Maness  126  3 80.1  25 STL 2.91
Rk              Player ERA+ SV   IP Age  Tm  ERA
76          Mike Morin  126  0 59.0  23 LAA 2.90
77       Jordan Walden  126  3 50.0  26 ATL 2.88
78       George Kontos  125  0 32.1  29 SFG 2.78

Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 10/17/2014.

posted by grum@work at 08:12 AM on October 17

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

What makes it even crazier is that if St. Louis had a one-run lead going into the bottom of the 9th, they would have brought in Rosenthal/Maness/not-Wacha to pitch. Why do managers save better pitchers for when they have a 1/2/3 run lead in the 9th, instead of using them when they have absolutely no room for error (tied in the 9th)?

posted by grum@work at 11:41 PM on October 16

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle


I didn't think a manager would do something stupider than what Mattingly did these playoffs (benching Puig, and then using him as a pinch-runner instead of a pinch-hitter), but St. Louis' manager Matheny has managed to pull it off.

He decided to use a pitcher who hasn't thrown a competitive pitch in 20 days in the bottom of the 9th, and then left him in there after watching him give up a hit, a hard hit out, and a four-pitch walk. It was completely unsurprising that he threw two more balls, and then grooved one for a walk-off hit (which happened to be a home run, but it really didn't matter).

As one person said BEFORE the game-winning hit on another site:
Matheny should have to walk back to St. Louis.

At least Rosenthal/Maness is rested and ready for the next inning/game that never happened.

posted by grum@work at 11:20 PM on October 16

Royals Advance to First World Series Since 1985

Like Time, who say the Royals are leading a movement with their one truly successful year in 20 years.

They were a wild card team that didn't even win 90 games. This isn't a "movement". It's a 14 day hot streak. If they win the World Series, they deserve it.

But as Jays fan I hope a lot of other AL teams try to mimic their impatient (dead last in walks) noodle bats (last in ISO).

posted by grum@work at 04:20 PM on October 16

Concussions last longer than they used to

posted by grum@work at 01:42 PM on October 16

Royals Advance to First World Series Since 1985

The Royals have a terrible GM, a terrible manager, and terrible plate discipline.

Yet, they are going to the World Series and I'm hoping they sweep the NL team that faces them.

posted by grum@work at 10:42 PM on October 15

"How Rebounds Work"

I want to bathe in the data.

posted by grum@work at 04:08 PM on October 15

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Say hello to your (probable) 2015-16 Quebec Nordiques!

(Obviously, I'm extrapolating and prognosticating, but come on...)

posted by grum@work at 12:10 PM on October 14

Infamous College Tackler Tommy Lewis Dies

I wonder if Jeffrey Maier will be similarly honoured at a Yankees game in 2056.

posted by grum@work at 09:53 AM on October 14

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

I just want to point out that Rogers' broadcasts of NHL games introduced a real gimmicky piece of TV this week: the ref helmet cam.

It just SCREAMED of "throw crazy stuff at the wall and see what sticks", and some think that it's as stupid as the puck streak from the bad old days of FOX hockey. Here's the thing: The ref-helmet-cam is goddamn awesome.

I couldn't watch a whole game like that, but the times this weekend where they cut to the camera for an instant replay of a goal/penalty were fantastic. There was even a moment when a goal went to replay review, and they showed (from the helmet-cam) that the referee couldn't actually see the stick make contact with the puck (since the body of the player blocked his view), so that's why it they went for a replay.

Other times, they showed the players hooking/holding, or the sweet passes that set up the goal, all from the ice-level point of view.

posted by grum@work at 12:17 AM on October 14

NFL Pick 'Em, Week 6

Yeah, can't pick against my team/lol, even if I'm pretty sure they're going to lose. At least, there's no money involved.

As a Bills fan, I make the mistake of changing my mind every week, and it's going to cost me. If I just stuck with one thought (always win/lose), then I'd have a couple more points in my favour. Instead, I flip/flop and I'm getting burned every week but one.

posted by grum@work at 03:16 PM on October 12

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

a Bucs team who look utterly hopeless right now.

You don't have to repeat yourself.

posted by grum@work at 03:14 PM on October 12

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

MLB shows off their funky new stat casting by showing Lorenzo Cain running around the bases.

I would LOVE it if this information was real-time, and they used it during the broadcasts on big plays.

posted by grum@work at 10:40 PM on October 11

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Maybe Ligue 1 invites FC Barcelona to join them if they get dropped from La Liga. If one foreign team can play in that league, surely another would be allowed.

It's pretty much the same flying distance between Barcelona and it's closest Ligue 1 city (Toulouse) as it is between Bastia and it's closest Ligue 1 brother (Nice).

posted by grum@work at 02:02 PM on October 10

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Could it also be a result of Molina's gift for pitch framing?

I really don't see it.

As for those Vazquez's almost perfectly robotic how he pulls the ball back towards the strike zone.

posted by grum@work at 02:00 PM on October 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

I definitely see more human element in the second gif.

Huh? I'm not sure what you mean by "more human element".

posted by grum@work at 11:32 AM on October 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Howard_T: Looking at the gifs (which are also visible on the article link I included), there really isn't any discernible difference in how the umpire is set up or follows the ball into the glove. The only thing that MIGHT be even slightly different is that Molina moves the glove towards the middle after catching the ball an inch less when he catches the "strike" in the second pitch. Even that, I'm pretty sure is a case of me looking for any tiny difference and trying to find one that might not be there.

In all honesty, they look like the exact same pitch with the pitcher, catcher, hitter, and umpire moving exactly the same way. The only reason you know they ARE different is that the umpire and Kemp react differently immediately afterwards.

posted by grum@work at 09:01 AM on October 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

So Don Mattingly sits his best hitter of the regular season, and someone who hit a triple the game before, and when his team needs a hit the most, he puts him in as a fucking pinch-runner?!

I think there is a 60% chance Don Mattingly is not the manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers come May 1st 2015.

posted by grum@work at 09:20 PM on October 07

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The best .gif combo to explain why some batters/pitchers get real mad at umpires:

And the article about this situation.

posted by grum@work at 05:20 PM on October 07

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

...the second-best viewership mark in NBC's eight seasons of broadcasting the NFL's Sunday primetime package. (The highest ever was 21.8 million, in 2010.) ...

...It was the third-most viewed season in ESPN's eight years of presenting MNF...

Those are VERY limited ranges (8 years) to make grand pronouncements of improved viewership.

Monday Night Football used to pull in twice that back in the 80s.

Just like baseball used to.

posted by grum@work at 08:31 PM on October 06

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

The audience is fragmented, but if that's the whole story the NFL and NBA would be seeing the same decline as baseball.

Monday Night Football:
The highest-rated Monday Night Football telecast on ABC was the Miami Dolphins' victory over the previously undefeated Chicago Bears on December 2, 1985, which drew a national Nielsen rating of 29.6 and a share of 46.

The highest-rated Monday Night Football game on ESPN, and the highest-rated program in U.S. cable television history at that time, was the Minnesota Vikings' defeat of the Green Bay Packers 3023 on October 5, 2009, with a rating of 15.3.

Looks like the same sort of decline as other TV ratings...

posted by grum@work at 05:04 PM on October 06

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

The 11.3 rating for the most-watched MLB game, which was game 6 of the Cardinals/Red Sox World Series, is half what it was in the 1980s.

I hate this argument every time I've seen it.

Nielsen Ratings

The top rated show in 1950 was Texaco Star Theatre - 61.6
The top rated show in 1960 was Gunsmoke - 37.3
The top rated show in 1970 was Marcus Welby, M.D. - 29.6
The top rated show in 1980 was 60 Minutes - 28.4
The top rated show in 1990 was Cosby Show - 23.1
The top rated show in 2000 was Survivor - Australian Outback - 17.4
The top rated show in 2010 was American Idol - 13.7
The top rated show in 2013 was Sunday Night Football - 12.8

It's the fragmentation of the viewing public that has driven down ratings.
More people have TVs now than they did in the 1980s, but there are far more options to watch than ever before, and when you throw in PVRs, Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, Twitch, and torrenting, people simply don't watch as much live TV any more except for single events (Super Bowl, elections).

Note: Marcus Welby, M.D.? Really?

posted by grum@work at 11:24 AM on October 06

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

My favourite quote about the upcoming ALCS (Orioles vs Royals):

Watching Buck Showalter manage versus Ned Yost in the ALCS is going to be like watching a snake emotionlessly dislocate its lower jaw and swallow a rabbit whole.

posted by grum@work at 12:52 AM on October 06

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

As for getting out of the hustle and bustle, would any team sport but baseball be described that way for spectators? It's an odd selling point. Hustle and bustle is pretty entertaining in soccer, football, hockey and basketball.

Baseball's refined cousin cricket has the same sort of relaxed pace, and it's still crazy popular. The "fan-friendly" version of cricket, Twenty 20, runs for about 3 hours a match (as opposed to the ODI or Tests that take between 1 full day and 5 days).

posted by grum@work at 02:47 PM on October 03

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

That's a fantastic visualization. The blending of the colours and shaping the colour edges based on the colours around them and the percentages is amazing.

The most "collegiately pure" county I could find was Hayes County Nebraska - 88.4% Nebraska Cornhuskers. The state of Wisconsin, however, should get special note for having dozens of counties with over 80% support for the Wisconsin Badgers.

Hyland County Virginia has to be the most divided county in the country, as it has three schools (West Virginia, Virginia Tech, Virginia) all polling over 20% each.

Rutherford County North Carolina might be the most contentious, as they have three schools (Clemson, Duke, South Carolina) within 4.5 points of each other (17.6%, 13.4%, 13.1%).

posted by grum@work at 01:37 PM on October 03

Why no one wants to host the 2022 Olympics

Toronto lost out on the Olympic bid a couple of times, but they "won" the Pan Am Games for next year. I think those are worse because I had no idea that they were still a thing that happened, so any money wasted on them is definitely not worth it.

I would be fine if Toronto never hosted another major international sporting event (other junior hockey).

posted by grum@work at 12:02 PM on October 03

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

I can't recall a single intentional walk that was exciting in the entire time I've been following the game. Can you?

Miguel Cabrera ignores an "intentional walk".

One of many "exciting" intentional walks.

posted by grum@work at 08:51 AM on October 03

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Thirteen Ways of Looking at Greg Maddux

The fourteenth way is with silent fear and dread of the impending horror and carnage.

posted by grum@work at 08:47 AM on October 03

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Miguel Cabrera only cares about getting the World Series ring.

Nothing else.

posted by grum@work at 12:09 PM on October 02

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

I don't see any of the six experimental rules that would make baseball worse on TV

The intentional walk one is worse for TV and live viewing.

A batter starts walking to the plate, and then suddenly puts down his bat, takes off his batting gloves, removes his batting helmet, takes off his shin guard/elbow pad, and then starts walking towards first base while the bat boy starts to clean up the mess he's left behind. All the while, no one in the stands or on TV has seen anything happen and is confused. The signal from the opposing dugout that was flashed to the umpire was missed by everyone watching the game.

Make the pitcher throw the four balls for the intentional walk. It also gives the live fans ample time to boo the opposition while it happens.

posted by grum@work at 12:04 PM on October 02

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

The Pittsburgh Pirates hitters seemed just as confused as the plate against Baumgartner as the old Pirates fan who wandered into the Giants dugout while looking for her seat. Enjoy the befuddlement of the security guard.

posted by grum@work at 11:28 AM on October 02

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

I think the excitement the game offers is more apparent when it doesn't drag on and on because of slow pitchers, slow hitters and lots of conferences on the mound.

I agree, but I'm not sure that it's the time that bothers most people, but the fact that it looks like it wastes time.

Don't get rid of conferences on the mound because it wastes time, get rid of conferences on the mound because it is boring to watch three or more people stand around and talk when you can't hear anything. If they had a camera in there and broadcasted the conversation on the jumbotron or TV, I think people wouldn't have a problem with that. It would be interesting to hear the pitching coach telling the rookie pitcher to "just throw the fucking ball over the plate, meat!".

Batters stepping out of the box bothers me not because of time wasted, but because it looks like a stalling tactic, and that's not fun to watch. If you were at a track and field competition and they announce that the next competitor is about to attempt the high jump, and just before he takes his run up he steps away and takes a sip of water and then ties his shoes again, you'd be annoyed (even though it's only a couple of seconds). Make a batter stay in the box for the entire at-bat.

The same with pitching's not the time that bothers me, but the delay in action (whether it is ten seconds or sixty seconds). I get that the pitcher change is a necessity, but instead of setting a time limit for doing it, how about simply saying "No warm-up pitches on the mound", forcing the pitcher to warm-up completely in the bullpen. No one watches the bullpen, so if they want to waste time in there, go ahead. Can you imagine if the NHL allowed a replacement goaltender a minute or two of practice shots in the middle of the game, with everyone just standing around and watching? Or a replacement QB an opportunity to make some practice throws on the field of play?

The work should be to remove the dead-ball-stuff, not to make the dead-ball-stuff go just a bit faster...

posted by grum@work at 10:15 AM on October 02

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

Me: All this praise about a game that took 4 hours and 45 minutes to play.

You: Do you think every 4:45 game is as exciting as a one-game playoff in which the lead changed four times?

In return

You: Baseball needs to be sped up. The game will fade without faster play.

Me: Do you think that the length of a game should be a metric for the excitement/interest level in the game?

posted by grum@work at 08:34 AM on October 02

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

IBB can some times fail.

Yes it can.

posted by grum@work at 09:28 PM on October 01

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

It certainly was an exciting game


The one-game wild card is weird, but that one was a classic.


An incredible game

All this praise about a game that took 4 hours and 45 minutes to play.

posted by grum@work at 09:24 PM on October 01

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

This season, through last Sunday's games, it was 3 hours 2 minutes 47 seconds, which would be the longest on record."

That would still be 7 minutes and 47 seconds FASTER than an average NFL game, but nobody is complaining about the length of football games.

posted by grum@work at 09:17 PM on October 01

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Sadly, I'll be working at that time.

I had my MS Dhoni jersey on when I was in Toronto this weekend, and got a couple of acknowledging smiles from those of Indian heritage who recognized it.

The most important thing I learned from that article is that there are numerous other T20 leagues from which to acquire snazzy looking jerseys for my collection.

posted by grum@work at 03:42 PM on October 01