Is the PennySaver still around? If so, I'm sure Jerry Dipoto has placed an ad for a slightly used former slugger in it, and the Phillies have responded: Cody Ross, Vernon Wells on Phillies radar - CBSSports.com.
Phillies: I'm calling about the slugger you have for sale. How much are you asking for him?
Dipoto: $21 million dollars.
Phillies: I'll give you a half-eaten Pop Tart.
What's encouraging is that the Phillies are even interested in the first place, but it's not just them, the Yankees have been rumored to be looking at Vern too: Now that the Josh Hamilton signing is official, the Angels’ next move – or moves – might not be what many in the industry expect. - FOX Sports. "The Yankees, sources say, are among the possibilities for Wells — the teams discussed him at the winter meetings, and Wells could fill the Yankees’ need for a right-handed hitting outfielder."
I find it interesting how other parts of the country view SoCal. I've lived in Wisconsin for a little over 10 years now, and I'm still amazed at how much alcohol is a part of the everyday life here. No matter the the event, the ever-present beer tent is a fixture. The presence of booze is much more prevalent here than I ever saw back home in Orange County. So when I read stories about how Hamilton is going to have a harder time managing his addiction after his move to California, I think "Nope, he'll do just fine." 'Structure' for Josh Hamilton holds steady despite move to Southern California - angels.com. "The 31-year-old outfielder, now more than seven years removed from a dark past that never quite feels so far away, has made it his daily mission to make the right choices. But for a man whose drug and alcohol addictions put him out of baseball for 3 1/2 years, no day is easy -- no matter how many of them he puts between his new life and his old one."
There's not going to be a test on this material, but you will need to know it next semester: Bayes, Batting Average, and Mike Trout - baseballmusings.com. "So what does Mike need to do to hit .400? To just hit his BABIP, his KBnIP and BABnIP (home runs) have the following relationship: KBnIP = (1/BABIP – 1)*BABnIP. For someone with a .383 BABIP and a BABnIP rate of .124, a KBnIP of .20 brings him in line with his BABIP. That means Trout need to cut his K’s 65% to hit around .380." Got that? Good.
An interesting look at the strike zone, count, and handedness: The Size of the Strike Zone by Count - FanGraphs Baseball.
The new market inefficiencies and even a Jeff Mathis mention: Pitch Framers and Readily Available Overachievers - Bill James Online. "These teams best known for scouring for market inefficiencies have apparently found one in the over-value placed on young players with years of pre-free agency left. There are plenty of major league quality players looking for a regular job with a year or two of team control still left. A team can just keep filling in and re-filling in with these superior older vets instead of losing games, while their younger players learn at the major league level. If a prospect can develop in the minors while the team fills in with vets, all the better to keep his arbitration clock from ticking." I guess backup infielders can be classified the same way we assign value to relief pitchers; there's always bargain to be found with the veterans.
Part 1 of an interview with the FJM guys: We Didn't Know What The F--- We Were Doing: Fire Joe Morgan on Fire Joe Morgan - The Classical. "The writers of FJM were never looking for their site to be influential, successful, or even read by anyone outside their close circle of friends. But they were way too good at what they did—and way, way too funny—for the site to stay undiscovered. Though the site is now dormant, the three statistically inclined baseball fans who wrote the majority of the posts are all now writers for NBC's Parks and Recreation."