Long David Wright post is on the way — probably tomorrow. In the meantime, some things to read:
“We’d try to create some intensity, so we got right in his face and asked for an answer pretty quickly,” president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said. “We weren’t looking so much as to what the managerial candidate said, in terms of the strategy he would employ, but what pieces of information he would use — what his thought process would be in trying to make a decision (under pressure).”
– Paul Sullivan, “Cubs Manager Interviews out of Ordinary”
Interesting stuff about how the Cubs are interviewing managers — they’re also going bring their candidates in to face the media as part of the interview process. By the way, how great of a gig did Theo Epstein land with the Cubs? The expectations will be low for a few years, he’ll be paid better, he doesn’t have to deal with the current mess that is the Red Sox, and he even got his buddy Jed Hoyer to come along as GM and act as the scapegoat if Epstein makes some dumb trades. He worked his way out of the worst situation in baseball and got himself into one of the best setups. He’s a smart dude.
The pitching staff is interesting in that while it was one of the worst in the league (the 89 ERA+ was 15th of 16 teams in the National League), it was not because of some notably terrible pitching, but almost an entire staff of guys that had recognizable names, were consistently below-average, but also consistently above replacement level. Perhaps best described as the Sterling Hitchcock Rock ‘n’ Fun Zone. Beltran is gone from the offense, Reyes is likely to be, and Wright isn’t the player he was at his best, so the team’s pitching has to get a good bit better as there’s less room to count on the front-line talent to score runs.
– Dan Szymborski, “2012 ZIPS Projections – New York Mets”
Baseball Think Factory
ZiPS, one of the best projection systems available, is not high on the 2012 Mets. It’s picking David Wright to lead the team with 18 home runs, and no one in their bullpen is predicted to have an above-average ERA. Those two stats probably say it all.
Membership in the [Baker Street Irregulars] is by invitation only, usually in recognition of distinguished contribution to Sherlockian scholarship. There are currently some 300 active members, each invested for life with a title drawn from the canon that often bears some clever relation to the occupation of the person on whom it’s conveyed. The journalist Dirda, for instance, is invested with the title “Langdale Pike,” after the gossip columnist in “The Three Gables.” Neil Gaiman, a member since 2005, is invested as “The Devil’s Foot”; Isaac Asimov is “The Remarkable Worm.” The BSI has had two American presidents as members: Harry Truman and Franklin D. Roosevelt, who, in his “Baker Street Folio,” advanced the theory that Holmes was an American.
– Jenny Hendrix, “Sherlock Holmes And The Adventure Of The Impudent Scholars”
I like Sherlock Holmes, I’ve read most of the stories, and I even own a metal 221B Baker Street sign I picked up in London a few years ago. But, goodness gracious, I had no idea that there exists a fanclub for Holmes so serious and well populated by high society. I can’t believe we’re worried about the Stone Masons when these guys exist. Also from the story: “The BSI’s purpose, according to its founder, is to ‘perpetuate the myth that Sherlock Holmes was not a myth.'”
Yeah, I want in. I think I have a new life goal.
Like I said, a long post about David Wright and the walls should be up tomorrow.