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TuesdoLinks: Chasing Fame

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The baseball media world is all a'twitter over one another's HoF voting. Maybe after Wednesday it can be about the players?

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Busy day. Already overflowing with new stuff to check out. So i won't bollux up this anymore by blathering on with an essay. Let's get right to it.

Around the World in 80 Links:



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Everywhere In Baseball

That was quick. The Cubs, thinking of themselves the new Yankees, are getting into the business of shutting down the ticket resale business. It's not enough that they got their money. They don't want anybody getting money, too. So no more print-at-home tickets...........

In the countdown to Hall of Fame Day, voters are now in hash/rehash mode.........Jeff Fletcher of the OCRegister flips the bird at all the PEDs hand-wringing. (Somebody award him his shirt.).........

The voting transparency this year is at an all-time high, as Jayson Stark digs into. Non-secret ballots increase the odds for a more reasoned result? The Founding Fathers should be ashamed!.........

Back to Jeff Fletcher, who is upset at the amount of ballots being revealed ahead of the announcement of the results. Well, yeah, kinda. If all the ballots are revealed ahead of time, there is no need for any announcements. Kind of spoils the ability of MLB to sell some advertising space...........

Then, in response to Fletcher, several BBWAA parties get into a twitter convo about the whole advanced ballot tracking thing. Fletcher raises a decent question: if we fans had to choose, what would it be, knowing ahead from all voters who choose to publicize their vote, or knowing nothing in advance but 100$ of all ballots submitted?..........

Victor Rojas participates in that dialog above, and is clearly a gargantuan Hall kind of guy. He doesn't like The Rule of 10 (I am assuming he would like a Rule of 11, either) and he doesn't like players falling off the ballot after 15 years (I am assuming he would not like 16 years, either). Well, if you are not going to limit the number of guys that can be voted in, and you are not going to limit how many times voters get to vote them onto a slate of inductees, you are going to end up with a Hall of Fame that includes a lot of Phil Rizzutos..........

Baseball America, on the other hand, is a small hall group. They vote in only 3 to their mock HoF. But among those 3 would be Vlad..........

One thing about transparency is that it reveals to us the personal bias that motivates those who are privileged with the opportunity to bring us the information and content for which we are eternally starved. Take Pedro Gomez, and his ballot. Stunning. He can only come up with 4 names: Trevor Hoffman, Fred McGriff, Mike Mussina and Lee Smith. Generally, all 4 are considered just below borderline, with Hoffman and Mussina getting the most arguments in favor. No Ivan Rodriguez. No Vlad. No Edgar Martinez. Not even a Larry Walker or Curt Shilling. What Gomez is doing here is boycotting the PEDs era, and that is hilarious. Why? Here, from the Wiki page on the guy: "Gomez specializes in baseball reporting for ESPN and followed Barry Bonds for the better part of three seasons as Bonds pursued Hank Aaron for the all-time home run record." So, absolutely, here we have a guy who spent the PEDs years being a primary trumpet for a primary champion of all the unusual heroics made possible by steroids, and got paid handsomely for it. But now this guy, well, he has principals............

Oh, wait! It gets worse!! (Thanks to @DJERA). Rob Gillies mistreats the privilege like it was some quarter he found on the sidewalk. I give him one credit: for voting for Larry Walker if he is voting for Vlad Guerrero. I'd like to hear how he explains away Coors Field, but that question would be pretty far down my list............

The Rams having just moved to LA, and Chargers now to be moving to LA, and the Raiders about to move to Las Vegas, all prompts a review of MLB franchise stability. As they do better than anybody, FanGraphs spends a couple thousand words quantifying this startling insight that MLB franchises are more stable than NFL..........

The Twins have doubled down on their Hector Santiago investment. Well, amost doubled down. Hector made $5 million last year, and the Twins just upped him to a one-year deal worth $8 million. I liked Hector, probably because we were getting to see him while he was outperforming his peripherals. He really fell apart after landing in Minnesota after Eppler traded him for Ricky Nolasco (who was not as bad for us despite the team falling apart around him) and a future starter Alex Meyer (maybe 'future' being 2017?)...........Anyway, good for Santiago. A good dude. I hope he doesn't fall into shambles after all..........

The Cards seem to have a little hiccup in that prodigious engine that draft, develops, and churn out champions. Their pipeline is still getting guys to their Major League roster, but those prospects are turning into journeymen. They certainly are not turning into Kole Calhouns or C.J. Crons.........

Holy cow! Reading this bit about Detroit is trying to join the modern era and engage in defensive shifts, we get this factoid: "In 2011, teams used defensive shifts just 2,350 times, according to the book...Three years later, in 2014, it was up to 13,299...By last year that figure had doubled again and is now 28,074." That is, what, an 1100% increase in just 5 years?. That is a huge amount of data-driven organizational communication and management throughout the game. The labor aloe behind all that is epic. That is massively revolutionary. I wonder if Murray Chass has noticed?.........

After having 3 early picks in 2016, this would be a very good time for MLB to force the St. Louis Cards to forfeit their top draft picks as punishment for their hack of the Astros a couple of years ago. MLB waited long enough, and the Cards lost thie round 1 pick by signing Dexter Fowler who had a QO from the Cubs. So what if the Cards wouldn't get to draft until Round 3? The odds for getting production out of a pick have already fallen off precipitously after Round 1 and the supplementals, and being able to say that the Cards won't get to pck until Round 3 has a sufficiently harsh sound to it on SportsCenter...........

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Trade Winds

The Ji-Man lives! Choi has survived to mis-play another day. The Yankees have signed him to a minor league deal...........

Jose Bautista may end up back in Toronto after all. Better there than Oakland, I suppose..........

But Michael Saunders (a guy we once coveted in Anaheim, only to see the deal fall through), has been signed by the Phillies..........Saunders, compared to our Cameron Maybin, is more power but less on base and less of a fielder, for the same money. And now you know where Billy Eppler's head is at............

The Royals see Danny Duffy as their future ace, and lock him up..........Which is pretty important, because it reveals that Royals GM Dayton Moore is still among the living. (Personal side note: Amazon installed a delivery locker nearby and named it "Duffy". So guess what comes to mind every time I read about the Royals' pitcher? Yeah! Amazon shopping delivery!!!)...........

Yup. Jake Arrieta signing a one-year deal with the Cubs leaves him primed to dominate that FA class a year from now..........

Astros looking to trade for Sonny Gray. This might make things in the AL West interesting. The Astros are trying to keep their window propped open but this is going to cost them some futures. Meanwhile, who knows which Sonny Gray the Astros would get back? The monster of 2014/2015, or the flameout of 2016?..........

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The Duffle Bag

Justin Verlander. Too old to stick around in Detroit and be part of a rebuild, too expensive to go anywhere else..........Here is your chance! Curt Shilling AMA today. Anyone want to take bets on something out of this getting headline?.........MLB umpire Jim Joyce is retiring. And that would be about 7 years too late for Armando Galarraga..........With the signing deadline having now passed and those players still unsigned committed to arb hearings (unless they get a totally new contract altogether, ala Danny Duffy), FanGraphs visualizes what is at stake.........Speaking of visualizations, they do Jerry Dipoto pretty well, too..........Some people just don't want to even think about having to eventually get up off their knees for David Ortiz..........Take a moment to appreciate where we are. I am old enough to remember clearly reading articles in electronic magazines on how to build custom TV and radio antennas to get out-of-market signals. Especially for night radio, when stations are forced to cut back their transmission power. This shit used to be real..........(H/T to UniWatch) Ringling Brothers/Barnum & Bailey baseball. Quite topical now that this circus has announced permanent closure..........

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Halo-Oppo-ly

Alright! The properties have all been put out there. This week, lets give you the tokens. I will give you 10 of them, total.

(Little did I know when I started out that Hasbro was holding a public contest to define the official game tokens. Results to announced in March.)

02-Tuesday-Tokens

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