THT Links: Spring Is Here!by Bryan Tsao
February 01, 2007
In the short time that I've been compiling Links, I've become very impressed with the Boston Globe's baseball coverage. The amount of interesting and informative stories they turn out daily has been impressive, even to a West Coast guy. When you consider that the city also produced Peter Gammons and Bill Simmons, it's possible that they are the best-covered sports market in America.
Now, onto the links.
A Tale of Two Blantons: Ryan Armbrust over at Baseball Toaster examines how Joe Blanton managed to put up ERAs of 3.53 and 4.82 in consecutive years despite similar peripheral numbers.
Shady Dealings: A look into the shady world of "licensed" ticket resellers, as the Admit One ticket agency of Massachusetts comes under legal fire for marking up an $80 ticket Yankees-Red Sox ticket to $500. The agency claimed that the markup was legitimate due to "acceptable expenses."
Beane Talks With AN: Part three of Tyler Bleszinski's annual interview with A's general manager Billy Beane is up over at Athletics Nation. The amount of access that that guy gets with the A's is amazing. A choice tidbit:
We've graduated so many players the last 10 years. But I'd include Buck, Barton, Windsor and Suzuki in that as well. It's more than you think. We're used to naming seven, eight or nine guys. We forget about the guys that we're just brought up to get here. That's going to happen. It's hard to stay at a level where you're producing four big leaguers a year. Teams just don't do that. That being said, these next couple of drafts are going to be very important to us and we have a number of draft choices this year. We're all really looking forward to that.
Padres Reject Rowand-Linebrink Swap—For Now: Today's Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Padres general manager Kevin Towers shot down the proposed trade, but might reconsider based on how the team shakes out during Spring Training.
Boomerang Mets: Charlie O'Brien, who won an essay contest over at Mets Geek, takes a look at how departed Mets players did in their second go-around with the team.
An Ontology of Minor League Pitchers: In the fourth part of an informative series, Rich Lederer categorizes all Double-A pitchers into groups based on their ground ball and strikeout rates.
The Powers That Be: Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) is challenging baseball's agreement to exclusively offer Extra Innings on DirecTV.
First Day of School: Apparently Daisuke Matsuzaka has been preparing for Major League Baseball by buying baseball magazines and memorizing faces. I wonder if he's picked up a copy of the Hardball Times Annual?
Welcome Back, Jon: The Boston Globe reports that Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester, who underwent treatment for cancer last year, has been cleared for baseball activities and has arrived at the Red Sox Spring Training facility in Florida.
Spring is Here!: For me, in recent years it's not a groundhog or even pitchers and catchers reporting that signifies the beginning of spring: it's when I start preparing for my fantasy drafts. David Gonos with some basic tips on roto strategy.
Bryan Tsao is the editor of The Hardball Times website. He welcomes comments, questions, and suggestions for both himself and the site via email.