Reveille 12/23/13

Good morning.

Here are several links from the past week that will make the Monday before Christmas a bit more bearable:

Because there are at least 20 viable candidates, if every voter votes for 10 players, a “perfect” split of the vote would have each player get 50% of the votes (and no one gets in). The reality is that Greg Maddux will not be sharing any votes. And there’s enough distinction among players that the massive vote-splitting will still only get 4 players voted in, if every ballot was filled.

  • David Schoenfield of ESPN’s SweetSpot observes that last season, “players batted with the platoon advantage 56 percent of the time — the highest figure since 1995,” and thinks it’s the start of a trend.
  • Seth Smith may be the most valuable pinch-hitter in the history of the game, but Doug from High Heat Stats bemoans the overall ineffectiveness of the role in today’s game:

So, how did pinch-hitting decline to the point where the likes of Lenny Harris would be the majors’ all-time leader in pinch-hit appearances? The answer probably isn’t a surprise. The ever-increasing use of relief pitchers has led to bloated pitching staffs and shorter benches. Benches so short, in fact, that there’s not room anymore for a pinch-hitting specialist (much less a left-hand hitting and right-hand hitting pinch-hit specialist, as was common 30 or 40 years ago). Certainly not after the roles of reserve catcher, reserve infielder and reserve outfielder have been filled (what a marvelous luxury today to have a player fill one of those roles and also be an effective pinch-hitter).

That’s it. To all who celebrate: Have a walk-off Christmas!

Most Popular


Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More