Why does all the toilets in our house constantly clog?!?! (Sorry for throwing you under the bus, family, but that’s not me!)
• by Kevin Goldstein the latest cat is up on FanGraphs, and one thing I want to note up top is the recall in a question about the nature of the designated hitter. We know it’s coming, but the question was whether it would just be universal or whether we would have the “double bracket” rule. I kinda forgot about that – it’s the vastly superior version of the rule that ties the DH to the starting pitcher (when one leaves, the other does; increases the value of starting pitchers, benches, and strategy) – because he didn’t appear in any of the news stories about the ABC talks. Basically, no rule has. So, like Goldstein, I would expect the former regular Universal DH to come along. Which is a shame now that I remember how much I LOVE THE IDEA of double crochet.
• Other stuff from Goldstein: FG incorporates a lot of Statcast data into their lead rankings, it seems people are pretty low on Jo Adell and Jarred Kelenic (reminding that even top 5 type leads sometimes don’t do well major league transition), it would be nice to have a solid knuckleballer on staff as a change of pace (!) but they’re really hard to come by, and Goldstein has always said he thinks the regular season will be shortened by the lockout.
• Additionally, as Brad de Goldstein notes, Nick Madrigal mentioned alongside Jose Altuve as having the best hand-eye coordination in baseball:
You read it here first, folks, Nick Madrigal is the next Jose Altuve (hopefully without cheating). pic.twitter.com/B4sPWLjfZI
— Brad (@ballskwok) January 31, 2022
• It’s interesting that these two come across as having this superior skill, given the obvious superficial physical comparisons people will make (though I think Madrigal is a bit taller and Altuve is a bit thicker). The big difference, of course, is that Altuve showed some power potential in miners (and a higher withdrawal rate) despite its size. I think Madrigal can continue to add enough power in doubles to float the SLG a bit and also keep defenses honest enough to sustain a high BABIP. But I really don’t see anything in what we’ve seen that suggests he can approach double-digit home runs in a season. (Prove me wrong, Nick! But also, keep doing everything that makes you unique!)
• Doug Glanville offers a very thoughtful response to those (like me) who say the Hall should just admit PED users who were among the true elite of their time and in baseball history:
— Doug Glanville (@dougglanville) January 31, 2022
• Whatever I may think as a random guy typing on a keyboard, Glanville is 100% right about this:
Watching so many sports superstars tweet their disappointment at the vote that kept Bonds out hasn’t helped. Eventually I realized what many of them failed to do: the lines you draw are different when you are directly affected by such endemic cheating. Not peripherally, not theoretically, but directly – in your contract negotiations, on the composition map, on the depth chart, in the payoff column.
It’s one thing to watch artificial dominance on television, marveling at the numbers it produces as if it were a magical spectacle. It’s another when you lose your job.
• Thank you, MLB Daily Dingers, for reminding me of the Zach Davies experience:
05/09/2021: Bryan Reynolds took on the taco for his first career Grand Slam. He posted career-high ratings in home runs (24), RBI (90), runs scored (93), and fWAR (5.5) for the #Pirates Last year. #LetsGoBucs (via Sports Productions) @BucsDugout @rumbunter pic.twitter.com/q16YpqR4D8
— MLB Daily Dingers (@MLBDailyDingers) February 1, 2022
• The cover of MLB The Show is out, and obviously it’s Shohei Ohtani, although there was a fun missed opportunity:
— MLB The Show (@MLLBeShow) January 31, 2022
— OBVIOUS® SHIRTS (@obvious_shirts) January 31, 2022
• A reminder that Jordan Hicks should be healthier for the Cardinals this year, and we’ll see if his recovery from Tommy John proves him right. He could do some ridiculous things before the injury (although he hasn’t quite put together any high-level results to match):
The legendary unfair stuff of Jordan Hicks. 😳 pic.twitter.com/Bn7pBUBDFH
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) January 28, 2022
• My favorite baseball monster:
Giancarlo Stanton has completed the most 115 MPH+ home runs in MLB in 2021.
The first three were:
3.) Tatis—4 pic.twitter.com/9e7rIK0APl
— Joe Randazzo (@Yankeelibrarian) February 1, 2022
• I’ve been trying for a while to figure out how to meaningfully discuss baseball considerations related to climate change (because the latter will continue to impact the former over time!), but for now I’ll share this Yahoo article on the subject. There are plenty of baseball players getting involved in green initiatives and trying to figure out how to help. I think it’s great modeling.
• Oh, do they really do that?
— Bleacher Nation Bears (@BN_Bears) February 1, 2022
• Nerf toys, toothbrushes, speakers, outdoor gear, and more. are your deals of the day on Amazon. #ad