Today was the Albert Pujols deadline reaction day, but I managed to avoid the fray for the most part. Morgan Ensberg might have the right idea in this funny post – what are we going to say? That Tony La Russa is silly to attack the union? That the Cards or Pujols were silly to offer or turn down contracts that we’ve never seen ourselves? The details are sparse, and we’ll just have to revisit this next year when the negotiations begin again.
Instead, I wrote about the age-old battle between old- and new-school baseball analysts: the closer versus the committee. Joe Maddon has said that he is ready to go into the season without naming a capital C closer and that seems like a good idea with the men he’s got in that pen. Each of his pitchers has flaws, but they also have strengths. Whether it’s a pitch they use, or a part of the zone they like to throw to, they have a strength. Whether it’s lefthanders they like to face, or righthanders, there’s a way for Maddon to leverage what he’s got, and it’s better than declaring a sub-par pitcher the Closer.
Since Rob Neyer came over to SBN, he’s offered his help to various sites around the network. I took full advantage, interviewing him for AmazinAvenue. He’s a generalist, so it’s was a little strange to ask him about the Mets in specific, but his unique take and great writing style came through quickly. It was only a pleasure talking to him.
In the fantasy realm, I took a look at the Baltimore closer situation for Bloomberg Sports, and though you’ll have to click through to get the full prognosis, I can tell you this: the favorite is not as good as the underdog. it may get ugly.
Then I played a fun game while promoting the new FanGraphs fantasy game, ottoneu: follow the Chase Utley. Utley, priced at $46 in one league, was traded several times. I asked people to argue which person got the best of those deals in order to get a free team – and I’ll do that again. It was a lot of fun and now user “Brandon” will be enjoying a team gratis.