December 7, 2013
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Tuesday, November 03, 2009
Programming NoteWhen I started writing ShysterBall in the spring of 2007, the idea was to give myself a place to be where I could escape the stress and unpleasantness of my legal career, if only for the briefest of moments. As time went on, it began to consume more and more of my waking hours and, in all honesty, interfering pretty significantly with that legal career. No, I never dropped the ball on a case, but it has been a struggle. I mean really, how is someone supposed to prepare for an oral argument when Roger Clemens is testifying before Congress? I'd like to say that I eventually managed to find balance with all of this, but that would be a lie. My life hasn't been in balance since at least 2006. Maybe earlier. Something has to be done. So I'm doing it:
I'm quitting the law. Starting November 30th I will be writing about baseball full time for NBC Sports.com.
Obviously this wasn't a unilateral decision on my part. NBC has decided that they want me all-in on Circling the Bases, and that's not the kind of thing you have to ask me twice. The people over there have been fantastic to me since I started moonlighting back in April. They've never censored a word I've written. They've never declared a topic off-limits. Their instructions to me when I started were to make some f*cking noise, and they've allowed me to do that non-stop since. When they asked me to do it full time, it was a complete no-brainer. I don't yet know how it's going to all work out -- the enormity of this is just starting to sink in -- but to say I'm excited would be something of an understatement.
Q: But Craig! Where am I going to go for my daily ATH fix come April?!
A: Right here. Well, to THT at least, because NBC has been good enough to allow me to keep doing ATH and posting it at The Hardball Times (see above about NBC being totally cool). It likely won't be in ShysterBall, because the ShysterBall name is going to go into mothballs. Right now the smart money is on it appearing as a daily post at THT Live, but we'll give you lots of advanced notice once the good Mr. Studeman and I figure it out. The upshot, though, is that everyone involved realizes just how valuable an outlet and how outstanding the readership and community is at THT, and no one wants to mess with a good thing. Day-to-day blogging will be at NBC, but ATH will continue to appear at The Hardball Times.
Q: But Craig! How can you subject yourself to the kind of abuse you get from the commenters over there every day?
A: I've learned a lot in a short period of time. I've also noticed a slight uptick in commenter quality as time has gone on. I credit many of you for that, as I have been seeing a lot of familiar commenting handles migrate over to NBC as the year has progressed. I hope that continues. And I'm sure that it can. None of you are the type who can't handle more baseball in your lives, so I'm sure you can make a point to be good boys and girls and read your THT, and then come over to NBC to see what I'm up to.
Q: So, like, what does this all mean for you?
A: I don't know. No shaving. Pants optional. Walking kids to the bus stop. Cheaper coffee. More time to go to the gym. Occasional cushion forts in the living room. I'm sure it's going to be an adjustment process. I'll ask Neyer what he does with his days.
OK, enough self-indulgent crap, we have almost a month to get all of that in. In the meantime, let me offer some thanks to some people.
Thanks ShysterBall readers of both the commenting and the lurking persuasion. I could bring more bloggy noise than anyone, but it's worthless if there's no one there to read it. I'm not the statcounter obsessive I used to be, but whenever I've lost the will to write, I've checked in to look at the numbers. When I see people who have way better things to do with their lives click and click and click like you've been doing for so damn long, I'm reinvigorated.
And away we go . . .
Posted by Craig Calcaterra at 1:52pm
Richard in Dallas said...
CONGRATULATIONS!! I am extremely happy for you, and I am extremely jealous! The only downside to this is that the percentage of lawyers who are tolerable as human beings just dropped by a HUGE percentage (probably double digits). I kn ow I haven’t commented much lately, but I have always kept my finger on your baseball pulse, and will continue to do so.
Posted 11/03 at 07:58 PM
Chris in Dallas said...
Woah. This is pretty freaking sweet news for you, Craig. Though I only comment rarely down here, I click on over to your blog(s) several times a day for your insight and snark. Keep up the great work, and don’t sell out now that you’re a big shot!
Posted 11/03 at 08:20 PM
Congrats Craig. Living the dream.
Posted 11/03 at 08:23 PM
As one of the aforementioned lurkers, I’d just like to say how much I’ve enjoyed Shysterball over the last season. It’s been a wonderfully glib counterbalance to the heavy statistical analysis that comprises the rest of The Hardball Times, and I look forward to reading more of your material in the future.
As far as your new gig at NBC goes, I can’t imagine what sort of product a whole day of nonstop trolling Yankees fans will yield, but I look forward to sifting through the flames.
Posted 11/03 at 08:32 PM
In honor of the retirement of Shyster, I am retiring the “Theif and Lair” portion of my name.
It’s funny, I read many blogs before I found yours. And I didn’t comment much on any of them. But the combination of a forum filled with level headed commentors and the fact that you pulled the right chains (see Jeter, D) and I became a regular commentor (whether that’s good or bad, others can decide, but it’s still your fault.)
Congrats Craig. I will be ready for your first post that defames those that need me most (see Jeter, D. and Rivera, M.)
Posted 11/03 at 08:35 PM
Just promise us that you’ll keep baiting the Yankee fans (and the other irrational fanbases that are incredibly easy to agitate). The Derek Jeter thief/liar was a post for the ages. Thanks for all the hard work and effort you’ve put forth. This couldn’t have happened to a better person.
Posted 11/03 at 08:36 PM
Shoot, I forgot 2 other things I wanted to say:
1. PHILLIES IN SIX, ER SEVEN!! MARK MY WORDS!!!
Posted 11/03 at 08:39 PM
APBA Guy said...
Welcome to the stay at home world, young man! But how will the State of Ohio manage without you in the barrister bullpen?
Anyway, as one who found you via Neyer, and was with you from the old pre-THT days, I’m looking forward to being another nameless, faceless shrieker at NBC.
Seriously, great news, congratulations!
Posted 11/03 at 08:39 PM
Jeff Polman said...
Calvin J. Butterworth and Vinny Spanelli both congratulate you, as do I. When you gave my wacky blog a shout-out, you inspired me to make it even wackier. And I’m sure all Yankee fans everywhere are rejoicing at this news.
Posted 11/03 at 09:04 PM
Congrats Craig. You deserve it. This is one of the few sites I read daily.
Posted 11/03 at 09:13 PM
Congrats, man! I’m excited for you. I’ve had a blast reading your stuff every day while my fiance stares at me in anger while I ignore such things as dishes, laundry and preventing the dogs from peeing in the house by taking them outside.
Long live Shysterball (in any name)!
Posted 11/03 at 09:51 PM
Big congrats from a longtime reader and lurker.
And whatever misgivings your wife may have at your impending pantslessness will no doubt be alleviated by the noticeable uptick in your happiness.
Posted 11/03 at 09:59 PM
Clearly I’m late to this party but I’d like to be one more voice of congratulations. I don’t think I’ve ever been this happy for someone I don’t really know.
As an additional perk, if my memory serves, you had a deal with your wife that you could only get the Extra Innings cable package if you were writing baseball full-time. So, double congrats.
Posted 11/03 at 11:02 PM
Congrats Craig! I’m so excited for you that I went and woke up my wife to tell her the news. She’s never read a word that you’ve written but she’s happy for you nonetheless.
I discovered Shysterball in the fall of 2007 via Mike McClary’s Daily Fungo podcast. I enjoyed the interview you gave, and have been a loyal reader (but infrequent commenter) ever since. Keep the Yankee-baiting comin’!
Posted 11/03 at 11:06 PM
I don’t have anything new to say, but I have a need to pile on. Thank you for writing and providing thoughtful an entertaining insights all these years. And thanks especially for your wonderful interactions with all your readers that really help keep the discussions flowing in the comments. I can’t imagine how much time that must take or how you could have managed a day job and a family at the same time, but you’ve managed to create a better rapport with your readers thn any other blog I visit.
Posted 11/03 at 11:17 PM
Jonah Keri said...
Fan Freaking Tastic! Congrats.
Posted 11/03 at 11:31 PM
Congrats, Craig. Echoing Dan in Philly, I’m extremely jealous as well. I’ll see you on the other side . . .
Posted 11/03 at 11:36 PM
But but but, I’ve spent all this time defending you at CTB since you weren’t a sportswriter, and now you’ve gone and joined the establishment :(
Hearty congrats to you. I’m another who found you via Neyer’s link. It’s been an extremely entertaining read this year, and I look forward to more at CTB.
Posted 11/04 at 12:44 AM
Well, I guess Andy McCluskey (of OMD fame[?])can’t ask you what it’s like to have a real job anymore.
Posted 11/04 at 01:26 AM
Utpal Sandesara said...
HUZZAH! So happy for you, Craig!
Posted 11/04 at 01:45 AM