Super Bowl weekend has come and gone, and that means the focus in my world turns mostly to the upcoming baseball season. Sure, there will be a flurry of March Madness, and the NBA is still playing, but it’s baseball, baseball, baseball for me coming up.
But for one last day it was time to kick back and enjoy a game that I didn’t have to write about. So I won’t spoil that fun here, but will instead talk about the food I cooked for the game.
I did the Sriricha Fried Pickles and the Artichoke Bites from this list of 28 Super Bowl recipes, and they were awesome. The Fried Pickles in particular will be made again. A simple beer-batter with pickles that have been marinated in Sriricha hot sauce, fried, and dipped in ranch. I’ve honestly never had that taste before, and I enjoyed it immensely. A sort of sweet, soft, crunchy spicy trip form inside to outside – and I love those kinds of combinations. The Artichoke bites were pretty good – I added bacon for the F of it – but nothing earth shattering. Kind of like a quiche in the end.
But dang, those pickles were good.
The Rangers made some noise about Neftali Feliz getting a chance to start in the upcoming year. I remain skeptical. I do believe that starters are more valuable than closers, and that Feliz has considerable upside to be a strong starter. However, there just isn’t a comparative player that closed for an entire year at his young age and then moved to the rotation. Once a player has shown he can be an elite closer, the team will be very tempted to keep him there. I think that’s what will happen.
Today I checked in on The Garfoose, a creation of reliever/author Dirk Hayhurst. A very strange creature indeed. If you want to know more, listen to an excellent podcast he just recorded with Jonah Keri.
My first-pass working-document closer rankings came out yesterday. The main thing that came out of the discussion in the comments section is that most other people don’t value elite setup men that don’t give saves. Aroldis Chapman, Mike Adams and Ryan Madson were poo-pooed as being too high in the rankings. The problem is that saves are only one of the four categories that relievers can alter, so going for saves and saves alone ignores the other three categories. A pitcher that can give you 100 Ks in 70 innings like Chapman might is a boon even if he doesn’t gather saves. If you tell me that relievers pitch fewer innings so that their effect is mitigated, I’ll tell you that relievers should be compared to relievers, so any positives they gain are relative to relievers and therefore those few innings can be a big deal.
Just like we value the entire player in sabremetrics and forward-thinking baseball analysis, we should consider the whole value of the fantasy player in our forward-thinking fantasy baseball analysis. In any case, thanks to Zach Sanders (of RotoGraphs and RotoHardball) and Eriq Gardner (of Bloomberg Sports and the Fantasy Fix) for helping me flush these thoughts out over the past year-plus.
RotoWorld changed up their look and for the most part, people like it. I like it because I will most likely be writing some articles for them and now the articles are easier to access and peruse. Narcissism!
To continue this navel-gazing…the AmazinAvenue Annual comes out soon and I’ve got a couple pieces in it. But the other writers on the docket are much more impressive: Joe Posnanski (SI), Ken Davidoff (Newsweek), Will Leitch (New York Magazine), Tommy Bennett (Baseball Prospectus), Ted Berg (SNY.tv), Jeff Sullivan (Lookout Landing), Grant Brisbee (McCovey Chronicles), Greg Prince and Jason Fry (Faith and Fear in Flushing). Wow.
Larry Granillo of Wezen-Ball and now Baseball Prospectus hit a home run this week by identifying which game was being played in the background of Ferris Bueller’s day off. Here’s the free write up in Wired with a link to his BP article, which may be behind a paywall. Fun, fun stuff.
Craig Calcaterra tackles an interesting piece by Jason Fry in which he basically says that people don’t care which writer got the scoop first. They care more who understands the implications of the news first. I think people get this, but beat writers feel the pressure to be competitive and be first anyway.
I’m sorry, I’m not buying that Moneyball will be the next Social Network. I’m skeptical of the movie.
Brian Wilson ad. Pretty good.
More than you ever wanted to read about Matt Cain and his singular statistical profile.
Sweet throw-back unis for Brooklyn Dodgers. Unique even.
Fractal Mondrian. Mind. Blown.
A heart-stopping picture of Christian and Muslim protesters in Egypt. I remain completely verklemmt about the whole situation and wish them the best with my whole heart.
On a lighter note, Mario feels really bad about the whole thing. He just didn’t know.
How awesome would this eco-bridge be? Beautiful and functional. Green is good.
This is the snarfably funny story of a Japanese comedian named Eggplant and the game show he was on. It turns serious at the end, but it’s worth the read.
The United States of Good Beer. Still not quite there yet, but better.
Four Loko v Joose in the Battle of the Buzz, Buzz Bowl One. Don’t like the ending though haha.
Coretta Scott King, annoyed at her husband. Poignant.
An app for sinners! What a joke.