Thursday Theriots for 1/24/13

As I do every Thursday, here’s a rundown of interesting links and stories I’ve found all throughout the internet.

Justin Upton has finally been traded. We’ve only been expecting this for the last year or so. Badly handled by the Diamondbacks front office. I was expecting that they would have received more upside in terms of prospects from the Braves. Martin Prado is a solid player, but he’s getting expensive and only has one year left on his contract. Keith Law loves the deal for the Braves, which has generally been what I’ve read on Twitter.

Baseball America has released its preseason Top 25. I really love thinking that baseball is right around the corner. The biggest news though? They have the Wolfpack ranked #8 in the nation. It’s been forty years since they’ve been to the CWS, despite being in super regionals numerous times. Can’t wait to see Trea Turner and Carlos Rodon light it up.

I like Shaun Marcum as rotation filler for the Mets. But I don’t know why they’d be willing to give up the 11th overall pick for Michael Bourn, as has been reported.

Buster Olney has an interesting idea in his Top 10’s. But I’m disappointed that he didn’t take a more rigorous approach. So what if the 1931 Yankees scored more runs than anyone? They played in a high-scoring era. Why not start with a stat like fWAR (yes, I’m a bit enamored with it) that is context-independent?

Yes, baseball is played in Europe. Not at a very high level, but there’s some talent there. I love Carson Cistulli’s regressed stats, such as these for the Dutch league. I would love to see more investment by MLB in Europe, as there’s so much potential.

If you’ve read my bio, you know that my day job is in the language industry. That’s why I love this interview by Nataly Kelly (who just co-wrote a seminal work on translation) with Kenji Nimura, who has served as an interpreter in MLB for a number of years. Talk about combining my interests…

And with that, I leave you until next time.


RIP Earl Weaver and Stan Musial

Just wanted to pass along a quick note to say goodbye to two of the greatest ever involved in the game.

Growing up as an O’s fan, Earl Weaver was always viewed as a legend. The Orioles have, honestly, never been the same since he left. He was a pioneer, someone who would fit in in today’s baseball world. Get on base, hit home runs, don’t let the little things overshadow how you effectively score and prevent runs.

I don’t have any personal connection with Stan Musial. He was by any measure one of the best players to ever play the game, maybe even a top 10 guy (9th in fWAR among hitters). I can see on Fangraphs that he put up a ridiculous 139.4 career fWAR with a crazy 11.5 in 1948. I imagine that’s one of the top ten seasons we’ve ever seen.

It’s wonderful to think what these men accomplished. I think any of us would be happy to have that kind of impact in our own lives.