Archive for Big Idea

To Read: Adrian Cardenas, for The New Yorker, on Why He Quit

Pittsburgh Pirates v Chicago Cubs

The image embedded here, stolen from a New Yorker piece by the now-retired Adrian Cardenas, depicts the former Phillies and then A’s and then Cubs prospect breaking up an A.J. Burnett no-hitter last season (i.e. 2012).

Also stolen from that same piece is the following paragraph (although one will note that the other paragraphs around it are also worthy of some consideration):

I quit after trying to balance my life as a professional baseball player with my life as a student during the last three years of my career. In the spring and summer, I played ball. In the fall, I studied creative writing and philosophy at New York University. But with every semester that passed, I loved school more than I loved baseball, and eventually I knew I had to choose one over the other. As I submerged myself into an academic environment, I thought often of my parents, who knew nothing about baseball but raised me with a passion for music and language so great that sports seemed irrelevant by comparison.

Article brought to author’s attention by pretty virile-seeming older gentleman Don Hammack.

It’s Been a Year-Plus Since This Site Made a Jon/John Jay Joke

Heritage Action has cornered the market on player pages with vaguely patriotic names.

The author can’t recall for sure, but definitely one of the big philosophers — like, probably Epictetus or Jacques Tati — writes somewhere that it ought to be the individual’s first (and perhaps only) concern to obey his True Nature. The precise dimensions of that Nature require some measure of discernment, obviously; that’s a given. Ultimately, though, it falls to that one in search of authentic living to identify and pursue those activities which resonate in his deepest self.

Read the rest of this entry »

If Relegation Existed in Baseball


Proposing New Wild Card Rules


There has been much written about home field advantage and strategy when it comes to the Wild Card play-in game. There are some very good articles on this very site, in fact. And while the addition of the second Wild Card team allows us to sit in the dark and contemplate a few more strategies and what-ifs, I shoot for quality over quantity. It’s not how many situations you have to consider, it’s how stupid-crazy those situations are.

That being said, here are four situations from which the owner of home field advantage SHOULD be allowed to choose.

Read the rest of this entry »

If There Were a Magical-Realist Novel About Josh Satin

Satin Home Run Graphic

If there were a magical-realist novel about Josh Satin, it would begin with a description of Josh Satin, rounding the bases like normal after having hit a home run against Brewers reliever Jim Henderson on September 26, 2013.

Read the rest of this entry »

Some suggestions for never-before-used home run calls


If you’re weary of the usual fare when it comes to broadcaster’s home run calls (i.e., “Back, back, back, gone!” or “Golly toots, a long potato!”), then please do consider encouraging your local mic-wielder to take some of the following suggestions for a test drive.

For instance, when a fair-hit ball clears fencing, the announcer might exclaim …

– “This all-you-can-eat seafood buffet just got pregnant!”

– “Are you ready for some football?!”

– “Go find a new a new grandpa, kid, because the one you know and love just got slaughtered!”

– “RBI, Brandon Phillips!”

– “Torquemada’s biscuits!”

– “King Kong’s ding dong!”

– “Donald Sutherland’s panties!”

– “Last night, I drank alone in the dark, just as my father did!”

– “The vicar died clutching not his rosary, but rather his secrets!”

Or …

– “Hand over your badge and service revolver, O’Boyle. You’re on unpaid leave as of this moment!”

Thank you for your measured consideration.

What Exactly is Nick Punto’s Deal?

I used to gripe about Nick Punto. I used to sneer at Minnesota fans who bought his shirseys and cheered loudly when he came to bat. I used to roll my eyes every time an announcer would laud him for his hard-nosed play, his determination, and, of course, his “scrappy-ness.” I never actively disliked him — never booed or threw a ranting comment into the Internet — but he always just kind of annoyed me. But then, it hit me last night. Nick Punto doesn’t give two shits about what I think. He doesn’t care what anyone thinks about him. If he does, he certainly doesn’t play that way. Nick Punto has transcended. He has come to the realization that he only gets one shot on Earth, and he gets to spend part of it playing baseball for a living. So, while he has the chance, Nick Punto is going to play exactly the way Nick Punto wants.



Your feelings on Nick Punto are irrelevant, you see.


Godspeed, Nick Punto. Keep on keepin’ on.


Results: Mustachioed vs. Clean-Shaven Players of 1985 Topps

1985 Topps
Click to embiggen.

Since its inception in 1973 in a small alpine laboratory built by ice-cold power broker/mindfulness-studies instructor David Appelman, NotGraphs has been a byword for rock-hard science; its various contributors, all of them, each respectively bywords for rock-hard scientists. For granted, is how the reader takes this.

Read the rest of this entry »

Suggested Products for Steve Carlton’s Business

Deadspin recently reprinted a fascinating look into the depths of Steve Carlton‘s mind. Turns out, a cabal of 300 people is running the world. Or the Jews. Or the Chinese. Or the bankers.

It can get a little confusing to keep it straight. And so, with a recount of the tale that cost Steve Carlton his life savings freshly in mind, here are a few suggestions for his tchochtka-selling business.

Read the rest of this entry »

“My Fantasy Team Sucks More Than Your Fantasy Team” — Act One, Scene One

Merriam Theatre

Last week, I invited suggestions for a fantasy-baseball themed play we’re all going to write together.

After reading through the comments, I’ve decided this will be more fun as a musical. The start of the opening song is below. Your comments will help decide what happens next, as well as future song ideas/titles. Curtain up.

Read the rest of this entry »