Recent Comments by yerfatma

PGA Exec Calls Ian Poulter 'Little School Girl'

Totally unacceptable: the PGA isn't supposed to acknowledge the existence of women. The idea they exist and have opinions is abhorrent.

posted by yerfatma at 07:13 PM on October 24

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

If you cover soccer for the MLS, try not to have any opinions. The article asks if this is what Don Garber meant when he said,

"I do not only ask, I insist that all those people who are paid to work in the sport, whether that's an MLS employee, an MLS coach, or whether it's a coach for the U.S. national team, they align with the vision that has been established by the leaders in the sport."

Reading that only deepens my opinion he's a very small, very insecure moron.

Some Google VP wasn't informed no one cares who does it second and went and broke Felix Baumgartner's space dive record.

posted by yerfatma at 02:25 PM on October 24

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Osh Kosk B'gosh

posted by yerfatma at 08:33 PM on October 20

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

More discussion of baseball's post-season TV ratings. One thing that would be interesting to look at is the total number of viewers across all games for the post-season. The number of games and the spread to cable dilutes the peaks (and the quality), but are they getting more overall people to watch?

posted by yerfatma at 02:02 PM on October 20

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Love Peter King's explanation of the Rams' punt return TD:

Fassel, who obviously saw in scouting the Seahawks that punter Jon Ryan mostly kicked to his left when trying to pin the opponent deep in its territory, had return man Tavon Austin line up to the punting team's right (Austin's left), and when the ball was punted, Austin faded further to his left, and his protection also went left even though Ryan punted the ball where Fassel thought he would, toward the coffin corner, on the opposite side of the field from Austin. Meanwhile, seven Seahawks charged toward Austin. The punt flew away from the crowd, but Stedman Bailey did just what Fassel had ordered— run down the field where the punt was going, not where the crowd was flowing.

posted by yerfatma at 01:53 PM on October 20

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

It always seemed like Hoffy wasn't quite as reliable in a tie game

The one that always drives me nuts is closers who routinely (again, possibly confirmation bias) give up runs in non-save situations. I feel like Papelbon and Lowe were kings of that. Oh look: "Papelbon has been flawless when securing a save this year [2012], with 16 scoreless innings. In non-save scenarios, however, his ERA is 6.48." Similar story the year before.

posted by yerfatma at 01:57 PM on October 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Well, one good thing came out of last night's Pats' win-that-felt-like-a-loss: the Jets managed to lose in a way no one had ever done before.

posted by yerfatma at 11:02 AM on October 17

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

The team's "closer" only seems to be used in a save situation

It's one of those weird things in sports where it became accepted wisdom because a team succeeded with it and people made the logical leap to it being the reason they succeeded. And Tony LaRussa was never one to deny his own brilliance. 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). Like in every sport, once there's an accepted practice, it's used by lesser coaches as a CYA thing: "Sure it might have been stupid to not bring my closer in for the high-leverage situation that cost us the game, but The Book says not to do that on the road!"

Jonah Keri mentions it in his current article about the Giants manager Bruce Bochy, praising Bochy for using his bullpen in a retro way instead of hewing to Conventional Wisdom.

1. The top (only?) Google result for this possibly apocryphal story is me saying it 8 years ago, so don't take it as gospel

posted by yerfatma at 09:36 AM on October 17

Was Belichick to New England the Best Deal in NFL History?

I don't understand the SI site: it was amazing to me it's unreadable on a tablet. It's unbelievable it's hard to use in a browser as well.

posted by yerfatma at 09:08 AM on October 17

Royals Advance to First World Series Since 1985

"Manager Ned Yost has become Midas here in October,"

Free mufflers for everyone! Really happy for them and hope they can win it all. A quarter century of failure has been enough time to dull the pain and my hate for that AstroTurf team of speed merchants that wrecked seemingly every other Sox season of my youth.

posted by yerfatma at 08:34 AM on October 16

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

trying to get calls you don't deserve

That assumes perfect umpiring, which we do not have. Given the strike zone is defined by the current home plate umpire's perception of it, there is a gray area between balls and strikes-- why wouldn't the players involved try to make that gray area theirs?

posted by yerfatma at 08:10 AM on October 15

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Dodgers have hired Andrew Friedman, the Rays' old GM, to be president of baseball operations leading to a writer teasing a story about Joe Maddon following him to LA.

And it appears today's Albania/ Serbia match got a little too interesting; no story yet but if you check out the author's feed, it looks like a drone flying an Albanian flag above the stadium led to a riot.

posted by yerfatma at 04:14 PM on October 14

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

All this hoo-hah just because of some rectal play. No wonder the parents are mad they're blaming the kids!

posted by yerfatma at 08:50 AM on October 09

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Waiting for Mo' Dough

posted by yerfatma at 02:27 PM on October 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Could it also be a result of Molina's gift for pitch framing? Gives me a good excuse to link this article about the Red Sox' Christian Vazquez from a little while ago. The Yankee in the third GIF should have hit the ump with his bat. The Yankee in the final GIF, well, I don't know, hit the ump multiple times I guess.

posted by yerfatma at 01:21 PM on October 08

The NBA has a new TV deal.

That's the kind of thinking that keeps casinos open. You're extrapolating from a single team in the country's largest media market that was bought 33 years ago for $12.5 million. Even in 2014 dollars, that's only $37,980,606. If you're gifted a team today, it has to play somewhere and you're in a media market that wasn't attractive enough to land a team previously. The Rams aren't ecstatic about being in St. Louis, so I don't know how well an NBA team would do. You're either leasing a dated arena or taking on debt to finance one and you're on the hook for a minimum of $52 million in salary a year and that only funds a replacement-level team that won't draw. Now you need to worry about parking, access, vendors, tv and radio deals, local politics . . . give me the steady stream of smaller checks and nothing to do.

posted by yerfatma at 11:09 AM on October 08

The NBA has a new TV deal.

Would you? Most of the benefits with none of the risk, cost or work sounds pretty good to me.

posted by yerfatma at 08:42 AM on October 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The spirit of the game also takes a hit under your proposal, since injured players making a heroic effort to return -- particularly when no substitutions remain -- is part of soccer lore.

That only applies in England. Johnny Foreigner has never braved even a hangnail.

posted by yerfatma at 01:20 PM on October 07

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Warming to the subject, while my weasel phrase "possibility of a concussion" takes some of the bite out of my idea, this is the second time in a year a keeper has suffered a YGKFO*-class cranial event so even if we limit the "possibility of a concussion" to "lost consciousness" we'd still be making progress. I'm ok with FIFA and FAs not wanting video replay (I would like to have a limited form of it) but they should require the stadia to play replays of any possible head injury from all available TV angles so the refs, the medical staff, coaches and, most importantly, the fans can see. I don't know if I was even a teenager when I learned to "diagnose" knockouts in football and boxing (admittedly back then it was because we thought they were "radical!" and "wicked!"); they're pretty easy to spot. So if you see your favorite player hit the deck without bothering to put his arms out in front of him and the manager of your team starts talking to him like "Do you wanna stay in and be a Real Man", boo the shit out of him until the culture changes.

See technical description here, NSFW audio.

posted by yerfatma at 01:19 PM on October 07

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Courtois was removed immediately after his bleeding ear was noticed and taken to the hospital. The issue is that he was clearly and quite obviously knocked out 13 minutes before that

It seems to be much the same cultural issue the NFL had. The Guardian minute-by-minute report on the game informed everyone Courtois was taken to the hospital purely for "precautionary reasons". If I were stabbed and bleeding, you could say I was taken to the hospital purely as a precaution that I might continue to bleed.

+1 for temp subs

Couple problems with this: it is in direct opposition to the spirit of the game and it's open to abuse. To his credit, Twellman (who is a bit of a nut but a very good advocate on this subject on ESPN FC) points out the flaws in each solution while rightly dumping responsibility back in the lap of FIFA/ national FAs. My solution would be a simple, effective and totally unpopular one: if there's the possibility of a concussion* the player is removed and that's that. The decision should be made by an independent medical professional. If it takes 7 minutes to decide and that's too long for play to stop, then the player comes off and he doesn't come back next week unless he's been cleared. There's no way to game it (short of intentionally knocking an opponent out) and the rule (unfortunately) favors larger teams (who can afford deeper benches) so it would have a chance of passing with FAs.

I'd be ok with it not counting against the team's substitutions but that opens it up to gamesmanship and this is people's brains and remaining lifetimes we're talking about so let's avoid any opening for screwing around. The history of concussions in US sports shows neither players nor coaches can be trusted to do the right thing (not even team doctors!) so take it completely out of their hands.

* Obviously this is a giant grey area itself but let's ignore it for a second.

posted by yerfatma at 01:06 PM on October 07

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The EPL is still taking concussions as seriously as ever. If fluid leaking from a guy's ear isn't enough to get him removed, let's just pack it in.

posted by yerfatma at 10:57 AM on October 07

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

I think they got burned by not being specific enough with Fox in the contract; no idea how old their deal is, but I'm guessing at the time Fox maybe had FX on cable and that was it. So MLB was probably happy to agree to let Fox air games on the OTA network and use their cable channels as backups if games overlapped. Now Fox has dumped them onto channels some people don't even have. Like poor Peter King when he's in a hotel room!

Also, the rise of FS1 and 2 burns me because we only get FS1 and the interesting (to me) Champion's League game always seems to be on FS2.

posted by yerfatma at 10:49 AM on October 07

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

A bloody glove. Don't get me wrong, the idea baseball's popularity is declining makes intuitive sense to me as well, I'm just not sure it is "real" in any meaningful way. TV is the opiate of the masses yet the most popular show isn't anywhere near as popular as it used to be. It may be the explosion on options means people's interests are more varied. It may also be when you stop only asking white men what they like the numbers tend to shift away from baseball.

posted by yerfatma at 02:44 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.

I don't think that's accurate: you're not comparing apples to apples and neither the NBA nor the NFL was at the heights baseball was 30 years ago. But if we use grum's numbers as a rough table for normalization, the top rating in 2013 is 45% of the top rating in 1980. So if baseball's best ratings are half of what they used to be, they're pretty much the same. That's a ridiculous over-simplification, but we have annual stories about the shocking decline in baseball's popularity without any concrete evidence it exists. It feels like baseball is treated unfairly because it was once "The National Pastime". Like the decline in movie attendance, geezers look at it and see failings in The Youth of Today because they assume how life was when they were young is How Things Ought To Be.

Baseball may not a main pillar of popular culture any longer, but we're also not stuck with a handful of stations on AM radio either. Maybe that larger audience in baseball's past was actually dying for another option.

posted by yerfatma at 12:58 PM on October 06

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

I've been following the game since 1974. I can't recall a single time anyone botched an IBB toss.

A few short things here: it does happen and even if you haven't seen it, the possibility exists and that is exciting. Sport, especially baseball for me, is about the point between possibility and result, when the quantum outcome cloud collapses into a single kinetic event. An intentional walk has that; sending the runner to a base by executive fiat does not. It's making a sport more like a video game and I do not care for it. Let video games be video games and Fox can fuck off with their Street Fighter graphics packages. The reductio ad absurdum of making sports "more exciting" is to reduce them to roto and just have a spreadsheet on the screen that updates every 10 seconds or so with the results of a random number generator creating outcomes.

I am in no way endorsing the idea of 4 hour long baseball games and would love to see a lot of the time wasting crap removed, but you're focusing on intentional walks that take up about 0.0001% of the time in the season. Relative to between half-inning advertising, walks are a rounding error in the total elapsed time of a season's games.

I find that national broadcasts have become insufferable.

A thousand times this. They broadcast the entire game for the benefit of people who don't watch baseball and "the next generation of fans" without realizing none of them are watching now either because you insist on starting the games at 8:30 in the East regardless of who is playing and what day it is. The best way to sell your product is to put it on at a convenient time and let the people who love it convince someone to sit down and watch with them. The number of people who become fans of a sport without any encouragement from friends or family has to be close to 0.

posted by yerfatma at 09:00 AM on October 06

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Joba Chamberlain is not having a good post-season.

posted by yerfatma at 03:40 PM on October 03

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Thirteen Ways of Looking at Greg Maddux

Can't recommend this piece enough. Fantastic read.

posted by yerfatma at 02:57 PM on October 03

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Really enjoying the Maddux piece, but I have to take exception to a part I just came across:

"Maddux had a cadre of entirely forgettable catchers: Damon Berryhill, Charlie O'Brien, Eddie Perez, Paul Bako, Henry Blanco. "
I haven't forgotten any of them and I can see 4 of them in my mind's eye right now. Paul Bako's a bit hazy.

posted by yerfatma at 01:31 PM on October 03

Why no one wants to host the 2022 Olympics

deadspin's take has a list of demands the IOC makes. Those alone would make me tell them off. Some part of me still believes we're not far from a time when the IOC and FIFA get torn apart and rebuilt, but then I remember money talks. It's going to require multiple, major Western nations to skip an event or two though and I'm not sure there's enough of a common bond to make it happen for any one country, let alone many.

posted by yerfatma at 08:31 AM on October 03

Watch the Senators beat the Giants in the 1924 World Series.

takes off his glove and starts working the ball with his hands

I was thinking this might have been due to a dirty or beat-up ball, but Ray Chapman was killed in 1920, so it might be the opposite, trying to beat it up and pop the seams out to give the pitcher an advantage. Or maybe it was just a sign of the times, like wearing an onion on your belt.

Thanks Ufez.

posted by yerfatma at 08:28 AM on October 03

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

Yes. There have been multiple cases of someone swinging at a pitch in the past few years and I recall one fake IBB where they stole a strike.

Certainly a regional thing, as is obesity, alcoholism, and being a Red Sox fan.

Jesus, I should move!

posted by yerfatma at 08:25 AM on October 03

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

Or they could use a one pitch intentional walk.

Let's not do that. Anything that skews stats historically is weird to me. Which is another argument against changing IBBs.

posted by yerfatma at 01:32 PM on October 02

MLB Pace-of-Game Committee Suggests Six New Rules

1. Love it
2. No. This does not slow down games and the possibility for weirdness is part of what makes baseball great. Mixing references, there were 1,216 IBBs in 2010; using 2014 numbers for plate appearances (183,929), that works out to around 0.6% of at bats. Should really speed things up.
3. Sure. Let me know how the advertisers feel when you move to MLB.
4. Or what? Ump calls a ball. They have this rule already for slow pitchers and it never gets enforced.
5. Meh, but good.
6. As a Red Sox fan, I wish this was implemented. As I get older and older, Mark Burhle has become my ideal pitcher. Might have something to do with watching Buchholz and Lester fool and fart their way through games like the second coming of Jeff Gray (with the one difference being I loved Jeff Gray because I was young enough my time was in no way valuable).

posted by yerfatma at 07:19 PM on October 01

Royals Steal 9-8 Win Over A's in Epic 12-Inning AL Wild Card

That is awesome. Here's a look at the Win Probability Added for each KC steal.

posted by yerfatma at 02:37 PM on October 01

Royals Steal 9-8 Win Over A's in Epic 12-Inning AL Wild Card

a testament to aggressive base running if there ever was one

Some people don't see it that way. Especially since Yost gave up potential runs earlier on with a painful double steal.

posted by yerfatma at 09:40 AM on October 01

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

A: Because Josh Reddick.

posted by yerfatma at 03:57 PM on September 29

Tackled Ohio State Student Was Wearing Secret Booze Panties

I don't understand: why did that make him run on the field?

posted by yerfatma at 02:19 PM on September 29

Jose Altuve Asks to Play, Risks Batting Title

"Pure Baseball Joy in a Pint-Size and Prolific Package".

posted by yerfatma at 10:11 AM on September 29

33 Short Stories about 33

OMG, Kevin Gamble, I forgot about him and what a sweet shot he had. The tail end of the halfway decent Celtics.

posted by yerfatma at 09:43 PM on September 27

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Ronaldo is good. And fast. And good.

posted by yerfatma at 04:13 PM on September 26

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

FanGraphs on Jeter's value. Touches on at least part of the question of what he was or was not worth. Includes a link to an analysis of his defensive value:

In the past 50 years, 507 different players have batted at least 5,000 times . . . sort by Positional-per-150-games, and you find Jeter in 57th place, around names like Cal Ripken, Rafael Furcal and Omar Vizquel. This is the positional adjustment, and Jeter gets major points for being a shortstop — a position of considerable difficulty.

Sort by Defense-per-150-games, and you find Jeter in 252nd place. In other words, he's right in the middle of the pack, near guys like Jeff Blauser, Andre Dawson and Willie McGee. He comes out at -1.5 runs on that scale. He's ahead of John Olerud. He's ahead of Mark Grace and Rickey Henderson and Moises Alou. Jeter has drawn the criticism that he's cost his team runs by playing a lousy shortstop, but overall he's still been a reasonably valuable defensive player. That's just because of his reliability at a difficult position.

posted by yerfatma at 09:58 AM on September 26

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Jeter isn't going to be remembered for a walk off single

Will that be the only thing he's remembered for? Of course not. But to think baseball fans won't remember that is silly. Ted Williams ended his career with a home run. He did so 15 years before I was born and I know that off the top of my head.

one of my long-standing dislikes about WAR metrics is how much it seems to favor, or even double-count, positional adjustments

What's the problem with valuing production more at SS than 1B? There are plenty of guys in the minors who could hit .250/.300/.400 and hide at 1B/DH in the majors; their problem is there are 60 or so people who can produce a bit to a whole lot better blocking them. I can understand disagreeing with the weights applied to the various positions, but it seems like a decent if rough way to level the comparison. It's a nod to scarcity: if you can generate a 100 OPS+ at any position that's nice, but if you can do it at a premium defensive position while not hurting the team, that's more valuable.

Is that what you're describing as "double-count[ing]" or is that a separate part? I suppose if defensive metrics were better than guesswork we could drop the adjustment but until then, it makes sense to me. And even with a perfect defensive metric, wouldn't you weight runs saved at SS/CF/C over runs saved at 1B? Hmm, maybe not, that doesn't make sense when I type it out. WAR does wind up doing double- or even triple-duty: firstly people want to use it to compare pitchers to position players and then, at least at FanGraphs, it seems to be the building block for player dollar values which is probably where the problem lies: the scarcity thing isn't that important on the field during a game, but it makes a huge difference when putting together a team.

posted by yerfatma at 09:01 AM on September 26

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

I think I buried the lede a bit with the short link. The article suggests Betts is, right now, a 3.3 WAR player just as a utility guy. That's at age 21 and puts him in the top 60 or so hitters this year with the potential to be a 4+ player if he were at 2B. It's not so much they shouldn't sacrifice him because the return wouldn't be that great, it's more like appreciate what he is instead of wishing for a slugger. He's definitely an interesting case; guys like Victorino, Zobrist and Sam Fuld have made me appreciate the non-star stars in baseball.

posted by yerfatma at 02:56 PM on September 25

Grand Jury Does Not Indict Tony Stewart in Accident

Aren't we talking about a sport derived from bootlegging liquor? And we are blaming weed for Ward's aggressiveness? HAVE YOU NO SHAME?

posted by yerfatma at 09:47 PM on September 24

Grand Jury Does Not Indict Tony Stewart in Accident

Love Tony Stewart's statement about how the person who's death he caused will be in his prayers. Whom, exactly, would we be thinking took precedence? Bullwinkle J. Moose? Ward's family laid a patch of a statement suggesting a civil suit is waiting at the pole.

posted by yerfatma at 07:53 PM on September 24

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

ESPN has suspended The BSG 3 weeks for something about Commandante Goodell.

posted by yerfatma at 07:52 PM on September 24

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Same people allowing commentators to kill Charlie Strong while they have Mack Brown on the payroll. Guy this morning basically said Strong's problem was that he wasn't Mack Brown.

posted by yerfatma at 03:21 PM on September 24

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

A statistical case for keeping Mookie Betts.

posted by yerfatma at 12:10 PM on September 24

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The 3 Most Ridiculous Things Ray Lewis Said During ESPN's 'Sunday NFL Countdown'

posted by yerfatma at 07:34 PM on September 23

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Just gross: "The Political-Messaging Huckster Behind Roger Goodell's Awful Presser".

posted by yerfatma at 10:23 AM on September 23

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

It was a heated debate that tore us apart not unlike today's Scotland vote

My sister flies home to Aberdeen tonight. The flight has already been pushed back twice. I'm concerned they are currently extending Hadrian's Wall vertically.

posted by yerfatma at 03:58 PM on September 18

Vikings' Adrian Peterson Indicted for Child Injury

I think it's a bit quirky to hit any other human being hard enough with a switch that it bends around their limbs and cuts them elsewhere, at least absent a safety word and leather boots.

posted by yerfatma at 03:26 PM on September 17

Bryan Cranston performs one-man show about the MLB playoffs

Awesome, thanks.

posted by yerfatma at 11:51 AM on September 17

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Crappy, overrated Mike Trout is not having the best season ever for a 22 year-old baseball player. And yet he's already 5th all-time in WAR for players through their age 23 season. So I guess he's ok.

posted by yerfatma at 03:21 PM on September 16

Gus Johnson Booted as Fox Soccer Announcer

Great article and a terrific comment as well.

posted by yerfatma at 10:04 AM on September 16

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Nope. Same screen telling me to subscribe.

Weird. I tried it in Incognito Mode in Chrome and it worked fine for me with no popup. I also have a lot of blocking turned on via Ghostery and AdBlock, so it might be that.

posted by yerfatma at 09:58 AM on September 16

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Hmm, try this one.

posted by yerfatma at 01:51 PM on September 15

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle


posted by yerfatma at 09:33 AM on September 15

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Two interesting pieces from Game Theory: the Atlanta Hawks and race relations, testing for chuckers in cricket.

posted by yerfatma at 09:24 AM on September 15

Vikings' Adrian Peterson Indicted for Child Injury

I have Facebook integration disconnected on my normal computers, but you can't do that on iOS devices which means I made the mistake of looking at the comments in the thread at ESPN. Much as rcade predicted, a lot of comments about the wussification of America. Not that I'm a better person: my first thought was it's sad the MVP of the Patriots 2014 season so far is a tree branch.

posted by yerfatma at 02:56 PM on September 14