Sunday, February 20, 2011

Weekend Round-Up - 2/20/2011

Today’s links are brought to by Kevin Youkilis.  Unlike Rangers DH Michael Young, he doesn’t have an attitude about changing positions.  He leads by example, not reputation.
  • Link of the Week:  If you don’t read Craig Calcaterra, the blogger formerly known as Shysterball, over at Hardball Talk, you should.  Earlier this week, he wrote a tremendous piece for Baseball Prospectus (free article) on an a fascinating concept he calls “Metafandom.”  For those of you amateur analysts and Hot Stove junkies, this article is definitely for you.
  • Thank god for Twitter!  This one is hot off of the presses from Dan Szymborski of Baseball Think Factory.  In this piece, he posts the 2011 ZiPS projections for the Red Sox.
  • Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably heard that Albert Pujols and the Cardinals didn’t come to agreement on a contract extension by Pujols’s self-imposed February 16th deadline.  This week, Joe Posnanski wrote two articles about Pujols that were so great, I couldn’t pick just one.  In the first article, he discusses the value Pujols provides to the Cardinal franchise.  In the second, he discusses how Pujols can cash in without the Yankees.
  • What would any link-o-rama be without a piece by Rob Neyer.  In the piece I chose, he discusses how the Royals will have to get worse before they can get better.  And believe me, they will get better.  Their farm system is the best in baseball, and might be the best in 20-25 years.
  • Who knew the Wall Street Journal had a Sports section?  Well, I did, but that’s besides the point.  Daniel Barbarisi puts together an article all Red Sox fans should read.  He asks a poignant and amusing question:  is this the fattest Yankee team ever?  Direct quote from Joe Girardi, “I tell you what, we’ve got some big ol’ pitchers. Good gosh.”
  • Should the Red Sox make Bard a starter?  Mike Silver at Fire Brand says it's not as a crazy idea as it least theoretically.
  • The ESPN Sweet Spot Yankee blog, It’s About the Money Stupid, has long been one of my favorite sources for rational and interesting Yankee news.  This week, Brien Jackson provides a great take on Tony LaRussa’s comments regarding Pujols and allegations pressure by the MLB player’s union.  Also, Mark Smith discusses long term contract extensions, and uses the Yankees, Reds, and Rockies as the bases for his arguments.
  • Brad Johnson of Hardball Times asks a fascinating question.  How would a team of players all making the minimum salary fare?  Given his sample, the answer might surprise you.
  • Over at the Platoon Advantage, The Common Man has been counting down the forty worst offseasons in baseball history.  It’s a four part series, so here’s Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.
  • Dave Cameron of Fangraphs and USS Mariner is one of the smarter writers around.  This week, he looks at Jose Bautista’s brand new five year $65M contract, and discusses whether or not Bautista could be better in 2011.
  • Jesse Wolfersberger on Fangraphs discusses the factors that affect a pitcher’s home run per fly ball (HR/FB) rate.
  • Are the Phillies missing a right handed power bat?  Bill Baer of Crashburn Alley takes a detailed look.
  • Pip of Fungoes makes a convincing argument that the Cardinals should try a four man rotation this year.
  • As far as Dodger blogs go, Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness is tops in my opinion.  This week they look at the six reasons to be optimistic about the Dodgers.
  • Noah at Brew Crew Ball compares the top two players at each position in the NL Central.  I like the idea so much, I may just do one for the AL East later this week.
  • Which relievers should break camp with the Red Sox?  Ben Buchanan of Over the Monster has the goods.
  • What are the chances pitching prospect Andrew Brackman makes the Yankees?  Joe Pawlikowski gives his opinion on the matter.
  • Random non-baseball link of the day:  This is just terrifying.  6′ 11″ power forwards should never wear pink dresses and blond wigs.  Still, it’s worth sharing for comedy’s sake.
If anyone has any great articles or sites that you think I missed, please either shoot me an email or leave a message in the comment section.

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