Thursday, October 16, 2014

In Defense of Small Ball

It's baseball Armageddon!

Let us count the ways:

1. Barry Bonds threw out the first pitch at an NLCS game.
2. At least one small market team will be in the World Series.
3. Neither the Red Sox nor Yankees will be in the World Series.
4. The World Series won't be watched by people who like home runs or big market teams.
5. Pitching and defense are in vogue.
6. Major league baseball players can actually, you know, catch the ball!

Today's utterly meandering column, which begins in San Francisco with Barry Bonds and ends with somewhere outside Cleveland with Indians manager Terry Francona pondering the Kansas City Royals, begs the question as to whether The CHB realizes that several years ago, Mr. Moneyball Billy Beane started investing in defense, seeing that as the undervalued asset, and that since 2012 no team has converted a ball in play into an out more often than Oakland, and the 2013 World Series Champion Red Sox were built on -- you guessed it -- pitching and defense.

No, he doesn't realize it, because he spends half the piece quoting Terry Francona on how great Kansas City's defense is, while never pointing out that KC finished just 12th overall in defense efficiency.

Guess Shank won't be watching, either.

1 comment:

Roger Bournival said...

Thanks for saving me the pain of responding to this tedious column, Mike. It seems like his recent baseball columns share this attribute.

Anyway, here's what jumped out for me:

Compare them with the 2004, chemically-enhanced world champion Red Sox,

I know Shank asked the steroid question about Ortiz, but unless he's going to start naming other names from that team (maybe I missed it somewhere), this is as close to slander and defamation as you can get.