I woke up this morning and the thermometer read "-4". That's right about the time my testicles said, "Screw this!" and retracted into my abdomen. Have some warm Halolinks:
He may be "The Machine", but there's a heart beating inside: Albert Pujols on Stan Musial: 'Thank God I knew him' - USAToday. "When Pujols looked at his phone Saturday afternoon and saw a text message from Brian Schwarze, Musial's grandson, his eyes filled with tears and his stomach knotted in anguish: "It's Pops. I don't think he's going to make it.'' Pujols immediately called Schwarze, who was gathered around Musial with the rest of the family. They talked. They prayed. And Pujols made sure to convey the message one last time to Musial before he passed: "I love you.''
Dave Cameron takes a look at Musial's numbers, and I find it amazing on how great those numbers are: Translating Stan Musial’s Numbers into 2012 Norms - FanGraphs Baseball. "In 1943, Musial struck out 18 times in 701 trips to the plate, a strikeout rate of just 2.6%, the third lowest mark of the year. In that same season, Musial racked up 81 extra base hits, and he posted a .206 ISO, good for fifth best in baseball. "
And someone else takes a look at someone else's number...they're something else: Swings and misses - The Hardball Times. "So what does it mean for Hamilton’s success as an Angel? I don’t know. Since both his chase rate and his contact rate were career extremes, perhaps his plate discipline will return to the more-typical numbers of a few years ago. That is probably what the Angels hoped for when they signed him. Either way, Hamilton’s profile mirrors his career and life trajectory in its strangeness. Even if he had never suffered his addictions, he would still be impossible to predict." Apparently Josh Hamilton swings and misses a lot.
This is pretty cool, but why did it take his death to get these guys interested in getting Marvin Miller into the Hall of Fame?: Former players gather to honor former MLBPA boss Marvin Miller - ESPN. "In an auditorium filled with Hall of Famers, dozens of retired and current players, baseball officials, agents and labor lawyers, 13 speakers praised the former baseball union head, who helped players gain free agency in the 1970s and created the path to multimillion-dollar salaries. Miller died in November at 95."
Take a ride on the Reading, do not pass Oxnard, do not collect $200: Western Front: Pacific Surfliner - Baseball Prospectus. "The train station lies at the far side of the Angel Stadium parking lot. It is empty now, although on the return trip it will be filled with people watching something called Supercross, which is an event best described as "not baseball." The Pacific Surfliner is a great way to get to a ballgame if you are coming from out of town, say from San Diego or Los Angeles." Hey, did you hear the one about the Angels name? Yeah, they don't really play their games in Los Angeles! Seriously, they're from Anaheim!! And Anaheim isn't in Los Angeles. The shit you can learn from the internet.
Is Bill James trying to stir up some controversy? Why Did A-Rod Wait? - baseballmusings.com. "I’ll tell you this: it’s a big wtf inside baseball. Obviously there is SOMETHING going on there that we don’t know about."
Nifty article about another baseball legend and his passing: 11 things I didn’t know about Earl Weaver - The Hardball Times. "Then, in his first full season in 1969, the Orioles won 109 games and a pennant. In 1970, they won 108 games and a world title. In 1971, the team enjoyed a third straight 100-win season and a third straight pennant. That’s as good a start as any manager in history has ever had. Only three skippers won pennants in their first three seasons—Hughie Jennings with the 1907-09 Tigers, Ralph Houk with the 1961-63 Yankees, and Weaver."
Please keep all sharp object away from your screen: Saberizing a Mac #5: Calculating wOBA - Beyond the Box Score. "There was a recent fanpost here at Beyond The Box Score requesting assistance forming some basic baseball-related queries with SQL. In that thread, a number of other BTBers, both writers and readers alike, reported interest in conducting a sort of beginner's tutorial as well. So it would seem like today is the perfect opportunity to end the long hiatus of Beyond The Box Score's immensely popular DIY database-building series, "Saberizing a Mac."
This is almost like shortly after you get that really cool pool installed in your backyard, and your snobby neighbor has a waterpark droped onto their property: Dodgers TV deal could mean another sports channel for Los Angeles - latimes.com. "Time Warner Cable is in advanced talks with the Dodgers for a deal involving the storied franchise's television rights. According to the Los Angeles Times, Time Warner Cable is prepared to pay upward of $7 billion for the right to be in business with the Dodgers for the foreseeable future. A contract could be announced as early as later this week. This would be the biggest local sports contract in television history. "