Manny “ManRam” Ramirez was signed to a minor league contract to be a player-coach at Triple-A Iowa by The Chicago Cubs and their President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein, who was with Ramirez for seven years in the Boston. So now he can teach all the young new players how to just be Manny being Manny.
“While Manny is not and will not be a fit on the Cubs major league roster, we do think at this stage of his life he’s a nice fit as a mentor for some of the young talented hitters we have in the organization. Manny will coach full-time and play part-time in a limited role that does not take at-bats away from our prospects. If he shows there is still some magic in his bat, perhaps he will find his way to the major leagues and help another team, but that is not why he is here. We are thrilled that he wants to work with our young hitters and make a difference.”
Pedro Martinez was one of the best pitchers the game have ever seen, and he takes a little time from his roll of “Special Assistant” (We all know that just means him and Kevin Millar are the Sox official party starters, and they are good at their job.) for the RedSox to discuss the art and science of pitching.
“Pitching is both [art and science] and you have to put them together. You have to study a lot. You have to study the movement of your pitches – the distance your pitches move compared to the swing paths of batters. You have to learn to read bat speed against the speed of a fastball. You can tell a slow bat or a long swing, or a short, quick swing. You counter those things. If a hitter has a slow swing, I don’t want to throw him anything soft. I want to go hard against slow. If he has a quick bat, I probably want to be soft more than I want to be hard. You have to be able to repeat your delivery and be deceiving at the same time.
And one final story, about beer and bats…
The folks @CigarCityBeer announce Homefront IPA, a beer aged on Louisville Slugger maple bats.
Someone over at reddit compiled a set of all-star rosters based on players current WAR stat on Baseball Reference. WAR = Wins Above Replacement, and is used to compare how many wins a player contributes to the team above a generic replacement level player. Here’s the starting lineups:
For the starters, I simply selected the player with the highest WAR (according to baseball-reference, aka rWAR) at each position, including one starting pitcher. For the NL DH, I selected the player with the highest offensive WAR that wasn’t already at a different starting position.
Then there’s all the backup players:
For the reserves, I first selected the player with the second-highest WAR at each position. For pitchers, I selected the four next-highest starters and the top three relievers (you’ll notice these aren’t necessarily closers). I then accounted for any teams which didn’t already have a player represented and chose the player from their team with the highest WAR. For the remaining spots, I chose the next-highest WARs across all teams and positions, with a total of 13 pitchers on each roster.
See some notable absentees? Perhaps guys from major market teams who are going to get voted in based on popularity not how good they are this year at baseballing: David Ortiz. Derek Jeter.
You know what’s great about baseball (and other sports) based commercials? They’re not all the same. Have you seen one of the 2 different car commercials? You’ve basically seen them all — they either swanky look at our luxury or sporty look at how awesome this car is – it can drive on a train. With commercials that have a sporty focus, they can head to the humor zone. And with that comes tons of potential stories and, therefore, memorable and maybe even enjoyable commercials.
Check out this ad for SportsCenter where a Pittsburgh Pirate Andrew McCutchen leads a merry band of pirate mascots on an office raid:
Another way the commercials can go, is sentimental and remember when you played the sport as a kid:
After you’re done crying, I think you’ll agree that we need to go find some auto maker ad firms and take those people outside and show them what they’re missing.
Spring is a time of awakening. A time of new beginnings. So with that, I again renew the power of the Nerds on Sports for more nerdy, more sporty, and more nerdy and sporty things.
Do you think I can get Scott Carroll to endorse Nerds on Sports?
If your fantasy team is looking for a possible SP pickup, you should check out Mr Carroll here, who got a win in his major league debut this past week.
I’ll probably fail again, but that will be ok. Everybody fails a few times… Nerds on Sports fails more than a few times. But it’s ok — look Bryce Harper is giving me a thumbs up, and he only has 1 thumb to give!
So this baseball season the fine folks over at CBSSports.com have released their app development platform, or as they call it “CBSSports.com Development Center” to the masses this year. I’m a bit of a sucker when it comes to these kinds of things as I enjoy figuring out how technological things work. I’ve got some half-baked iPhone apps around here somewhere; as well as pile of barely used API keys for just about every service you can think of. Perhaps I should combine them all and make: a Google map with pins of your Fantasy baseball players and pictures of that day’s weather forecast that checks you in to foursquare while tweeting about it. I’m sure everyone will be shelling out the big bucks for that app. Right?
Actually, the reason I’m posting this is that I’ve actually completed the process of creating a little app for fantasy baseball. Introducing the Nerds on Sports Nickname App for CBSSports.com. Yup, I made an app that will display players nicknames. Some of the names are real, many are completely made up. For example the most recently added nickname is for Mark “Mayonnaise” Buehrle: That’s not a name that anyone (other than myself so far) is calling him, but I think it works well for a couple of reasons:
2) As a pitcher, he can be told to “put some Mayonnaise on it” instead of the usual slang of mustard.
See what interesting name/news tidbits you can learn from just a silly name? This is why I decided to create the app. Of course the list of players in the CBS Sports database is over 4500 players long, so if I really want to have tons of names, I need everyone’s help. That is why I created a suggestion box for new names. Please give me some new names — If you do, you’ll get to see your name in the app! Or perhaps, go spend the $1 to buy the app (You can sign up for a free league and buy just the app if you want to donate a (portion of a) dollar to me, if you do, please give me a good review ).