Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Go ahead, extras for all the diners

Eh, why not one more post for today?

---Lots of fun stuff in Barry Svrluga's Nats Journal today (and if you spell his last name enough, it gets easy):

* Barry notes the Florida Today dictate-a-column where Jim Bowden pretty much springs it that Nick Johnson is going to start at first.

* Notables, including Charlie Gibson (fortunately not Charlie Gipson) are in Viera.

* Jose Vidro gets the Jordan Rules when playing pick-up ball.

* Gibson is in a baseball uniform; again, it's fortunate that we're not talking about Gipson.

* Robinson implies that late February is a time when MLB hitters are scared of any pitched balls traveling in excess of 40-50 mph. (Well, maybe I'm dramatizing that one.)

* The Nats' taste in music really sucks.

* Ronan Tynan ---> Young MC. As my old English teacher would say, that one lacked a "semicolon-however-comma."

* Barry likes NASCAR, specifically Jeff Gordon. I couldn't care less about Gordon, but we won't hold the liking-NASCAR part against him.

* The Nats' spokesman is an if-they-made -it of a dead folk-country singer and a VIP in the Reagan White House.

* Svruga's got something for Panera Bread. Probably safer than Pantera Bread.

* It's raining, it's pour, Frank Robinson is snoring.

---Speaking of Vidro, it's a good thing he's rounding into shape from knee surgery; he's our insurance policy in case the big Carlos Baerga signing doesn't pan out.

---Here's an article on the eight bidders to design the new ballpark. For info purposes only; the article's been analyzed quite well at the other DC blogs and at the Ballpark Guys Forum.

---"Unsupportable Thesis of the Day" goes to this blogger, who argues that he doesn't "see Barry [Bonds] as the premier player now or ever, juice notwithstanding." You can stop at the next sentence ("Let me tell you why."). He argues the point using BA/HR/RBI, which is kind of like using a Social Security number to evaluate Lindsay Lohan's physique.

Hat tip to Eucalyptus, who even drops a "Roger Maynard" reference (search under "Maynard" on this page for a bit of backstory), the infamous troll from, who's been fightin' the pointless fight there---cordially, as always---for probably close to fifteen years now. Eucalyptus, whose blog is highly recommended, "generally enjoy[s]" the blogger's writing, so maybe I should check it out. He scores dedication-points for attempting to defend the position inside the "comments" section, for what it's worth.

---The Nationals are now Cincy's team, and so it makes sense that we'd care about new special assistant Barry Larkin's Hall of Fame chances.

Look no further than Aaron Gleeman's analysis in The Hardball Times today. The verdict: overwhelmingly qualified. But don't just read it for the punch line; this is one of the examples where sabermetrics is more fun in traversing to the point rather than just getting to the point in the first place. It's a nice---even short---analysis.

Sweet Jesus, that Bonds article was painful. Absolutely brutal.

That's a perfect example of why people hate stats--because there are so many people who are misusing them and not knowing how to accurately describe what they're seeing with stats.

Just as a writer shouldn't use the wrong adjectives when describing things, a writer shouldn't use the wrong stats when trying to make a point.

The comments to that post made me laugh out loud!

On another note, I noticed it earlier and didn't blog about it, but what the hell is Svrluga doing playing basketball with the team's best player and who happens to be coming off knee surgery? Is he trying to kill the team? :)
It was definitely painful, that's for sure. I went back and edited out the guy's name, just in case that was in poor taste. Last thing I'd want is someone to google my name and see "Unsupportable Thesis of the Day" next to it.

Anyway, I have no idea why Barry S. is playing hoops with Vidro; maybe Barry's recovering from knee surgery, too. ;-)
I wish the commenters over there wouldn't resort to personal attacks like "Bijan, you're an idiot!" though.

I mean, that article was not good from an analytical standpoint, but Bijan Bayne has written some stuff that I've really enjoyed. The man is no idiot -- we just need to take him to a few SABR meetings.

(Okay -- do any of us actually go to SABR meetings? I sure don't.)
Interestingly, Yuda, the guy who called the author an "idiot," Chris Cathcart, also used (?) to be a regular at Cathcart would offer his share of insight, IIRC, but didn't pull any punches in calling others idiots.

At any rate, the discussion there started in a fairly interesting manner, but now it looks like the author and "Dwayne" are just talking past each other (e.g., the difference between 10 and 11 years on a certain point).

I'm not sure, even on a subjective level, how a guy named MVP 3 out of 4 years--well before the steroids stuff, mind you---cannot be considered elite, but there you go.
BTW, Yuda: I've never been to a SABR meeting or convention. I was a member for a long time, foolishly let my membership run out when I was down on moolah, have been meaning to sign up again.
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