Grantland

Sep 27, 2004
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Well yeah. I love a good copy editor -- they save you more times than not from having spinach in your teeth.
For Deadspin to pretend that what they're doing isn't just plain old jealousy-driven ballbusting is a joke. Calling it comparable to Spy magazine's "Letters to the New Yorker" is outrageous and absurd. Spy magazine was 10 billion times funnier and smarter than anything on Dspin. At this point, Deadspin is one rung about "Bar Stool Sports."
 

Mr Weebles

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Nice article on Tito and Theo, even if it's by Barnicle. Very personal insight from Tito about his son in Afghanistan.
My link
Yeah, that's good stuff.

I like to think the baseball ops guy in this passage is Eric Van:

"But it's about more than numbers," he says. "I remember a few years ago, we're playing the Yankees on national TV and one of the kids in baseball ops — he's not here now — says to me about five hours before the game, 'You got Mike Lowell in the lineup?' And I say, 'Yeah.' And he says he doesn't do well in the matchup with Chien-Ming Wang, who was pitching for the Yankees.

"I say to the kid, 'So you don't want me to play him?' And he says, 'Yeah' and I tell him, 'OK. Look over there. There's Mike Lowell's locker. He's over there. You go tell Mike Lowell he's not playing in a national TV game against our biggest rival 'cause your fucking numbers tell us not to play him. See what kind of reaction you get from him and then come back and tell me.' Course Mike Lowell played that game.
That would be awesome.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Yeah, that's good stuff.

I like to think the baseball ops guy in this passage is Eric Van:



That would be awesome.
He says "one of the kids." That ain't Van.

Because I'm a dork, I pulled the matchups off B-Ref:

8/18/06: 0 for 2 with a walk
9/16/06: 1 for 3 with a double
4/29/07: 0 for 1 with 2 walks
5/21/07: 0 for 2 with 2 Ks
6/10/09: 1 for 3 with a HR

Wang pitched against the Sox twice in April of 08 and Lowell wasn't in the lineup either time.
 

Mystic Merlin

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"Can't call 'em stat-geek stuff," Tito Francona volunteers. "That's disrespectful. There's a lot of good information here, matchups, stuff like that. People work hard at this.



Suck shit, media.


[font="Georgia]This was a good piece - cogent, interesting, and - in a rare occurrence on this site - it didn't exert most of its energy drawing attention to the author of the story. I can't stand some of the self-referential dick-measuring that plagues a lot of the content so far.[/font]
[font="Georgia]
[/font]
[font="Georgia]And: no. fucking. footnotes. [/font]
 

DegenerateSoxFan

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Nice article on Tito and Theo, even if it's by Barnicle. Very personal insight from Tito about his son in Afghanistan.
My link
Having not lived in the Boston area for many years, my memory's a little hazy on this, but didn't Barnicle get the boot from the Globe for plagarism? If I recall correctly, he had a regular - and usually curmudgeonly - column in the Metro/Region section a few times a week.

Good column tho, getting across the Theo-Tito dynamic. It's good to know those guys seem to known when to knock heads and when to stay out of each others' way.
 

mauf

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I'm pleasantly surprised how good Grantland has been, but this article is the first time I've finished an article and wanted more. Some of Grantland's regular writers could stand to learn that inspiration can move through every key on the keyboard -- including the "delete" key.

Edit: "This" article = the Barnicle piece about Tito and Theo. Guess that wasn't clear, what with JMOH's reference to Molly Lambert in the preceding post. Sorry.
 

Stevie1der

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I'm pleasantly surprised how good Grantland has been, but this article is the first time I've finished an article and wanted more. Some of Grantland's regular writers could stand to learn that inspiration can move through every key on the keyboard -- including the "delete" key.

Edit: "This" article = the Barnicle piece about Tito and Theo. Guess that wasn't clear, what with JMOH's reference to Molly Lambert in the preceding post. Sorry.
The Barnicle piece, to me, read like maybe the first two pages of an awesome six page SI feature. Eight years is a long partnership in the world of sports, but at the end of the piece I felt like Barnicle missed out on a lot of great storytelling and instead only gave a superficial examination of the two men and how they work together. I guess I'm echoing some previous thoughts already posted here, but for a site that seemed to be advertised as a creative outlet for great minds to write long form prose free of the shackles of deadlines and word limits, there sure are a lot of articles that end abruptly or feel like they only went one-quarter as deep into a tangent as they should have.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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I don't get Deadspin's point. They're angry that Barincle used Wikipedia instead of the Census Bureau for the average income? Who gives a shit, it's still not a lot of money. I think that's the point Barnicle was trying to make. And comparing the average income between New Brighton, PA and Brookline, MA was to show that the towns themselves were different. The average family in Brookline made three-to-four times what the folks in New Brighton made. Furthermore, he wasn't saying that Francona was poor and Epstein was rich, he was commenting on the differences of the towns.

One would logically think that the two towns' average family income would make for differences in being raised, which was part of the larger point that they both view the baseball world differently yet are able to work together so that the Red Sox have success. And again, I think that he's right.

If Mike Barnicle can produce an audio recording of Terry Francona speaking the exact words in this article, unembellished, in the exact order he wrote them, we'll pay him $500. Down to the last stretched dollar.
That's just fucking lame. Francona is a good speaker, but he's not Winston Churchill. There is no way that he said what Barnicle has him saying? None?

Deadspin is really feeling the Grantland heat, I think. And they're striking back, though I'm not sure why. They do two completely different things.
 

cromulence

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That's just fucking lame. Francona is a good speaker, but he's not Winston Churchill. There is no way that he said what Barnicle has him saying? None?
It's definitely a little bit of a reach, but I think their point is that the stuff he said just seems too perfectly suited for Barnicle's prose. They focus on the "Now it's all on these things, computers" line because if you think about it, people don't really talk like that. It seems more likely that he would've gestured to a computer as he said it, but instead of Barnicle putting "computers" in brackets, he attributes the words to Francona.

They're definitely guessing and they could be wrong, and even if they're right it's not exactly a huge deal. It's a bit nitpicky, like a lot of their Grantlandia stuff has been. I agree that their Grantland obsession does seem to be an indication that they're getting a bit nervous about it. Seems like a strange tactic to constantly call attention to their big competitor, though.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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It's definitely a little bit of a reach, but I think their point is that the stuff he said just seems too perfectly suited for Barnicle's prose. They focus on the "Now it's all on these things, computers" line because if you think about it, people don't really talk like that. It seems more likely that he would've gestured to a computer as he said it, but instead of Barnicle putting "computers" in brackets, he attributes the words to Francona.
I guess. But isn't that the same thing? Is Barnicle clearing a quote, or in this case a gesture, up so that the reader knows what he's talking about. I suppose he could have written something like, "Now it's all on these things," Francona said, gesturing towards his computer. What Francona said, what he was talking about hasn't changed at all. His point was that he used to do this stuff long-hand (which I found really interesting) and it would take him a long time, now it's provided to him.

Plus, saying that "people don't really talk like that" is not exactly admissible evidence. Francona could have been eating a sandwich when he was talking with Barnicle and could have said the first part of his sentence "Now it's all on these things" taken a bite and said, "computers". Or perhaps he and Barnicle were position in a way where Barnicle couldn't see his lap top, or Francona could have been staring at something else and used the word "computers" to delineate what he was talking about. There a bunch of times where stilted speech comes up in every day conversation.

But getting caught up in minutia like this, doesn't really do Deadspin any favors. It just makes them look small-time.

They're definitely guessing and they could be wrong, and even if they're right it's not exactly a huge deal. It's a bit nitpicky, like a lot of their Grantlandia stuff has been. I agree that their Grantland obsession does seem to be an indication that they're getting a bit nervous about it. Seems like a strange tactic to constantly call attention to their big competitor, though.
And it's the guessing that bugs me. Barnicle is a plagiarizer, no one doubts that. But accusing him of it again, when there is literally no facts to support the claim is ridiculous. At this point Deadspin is throwing shit against the wall and hoping it sticks.
 

cromulence

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Plus, saying that "people don't really talk like that" is not exactly admissible evidence.

But getting caught up in minutia like this, doesn't really do Deadspin any favors. It just makes them look small-time.
I totally agree with you on that; the fact that I had to come up with that theory on my own is proof enough that the article doesn't have much of anything to it. It seems like the sort of thing a writer might notice and point out to his fellow writers, largely as a shot at Barnicle, but it didn't warrant actually being posted on the site. When I saw the headline, I was expecting something a lot more obvious or blatant. In my view, there's a decent chance that they're correct about some of the stuff Barnicle did, but they really didn't have enough to call him out on it.

One thing, though: using Wikipedia for research on a platform as large as Grantland is pretty damn lazy. It's not an egregious, unforgivable sin, but it's shitty.
 

albsoxfan

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Jul 15, 2005
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He says "one of the kids." That ain't Van.

Because I'm a dork, I pulled the matchups off B-Ref:

8/18/06: 0 for 2 with a walk
9/16/06: 1 for 3 with a double
4/29/07: 0 for 1 with 2 walks
5/21/07: 0 for 2 with 2 Ks
6/10/09: 1 for 3 with a HR

Wang pitched against the Sox twice in April of 08 and Lowell wasn't in the lineup either time.
Lowell was on the DL with a sprained thumb from 4/10-4/29 in 2008.
 

Dehere

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Wow. Five hundred whole dollars, huh? Deadspin really putting its money where its mouth is.

Love to see Barnicle come back saying he does have the tape and he'll provide it if Deadspin ups their dare to fifty grand to a charity. Then we'd see what kind of balls Socca has.
 

Average Reds

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It's definitely a little bit of a reach, but I think their point is that the stuff he said just seems too perfectly suited for Barnicle's prose.
Actually, that's not their point.

They could care less if the quote is true or not. What they care about is that Barnicle's past issues with plagiarism give them a free pass to publish all the innuendos they want about the legitimacy of what he's doing now and trash a perceived competitor in the process.

As JMOH said, it's pretty small time stuff. But that's what Deadspin has become.
 
Sep 27, 2004
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Barnicle is absolutely an embellisher and those quotes dont ring true to me, mainly because they too easily fit into his thesis and Francona is not some windbreaker-wearing Old Tymer scouting Cape League games. But yeah, Deadspin is petty and should pick their spots better.

You run with that only if you have evidence the quotes were polished. Which they don't.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Wow. Five hundred whole dollars, huh? Deadspin really putting its money where its mouth is.

Love to see Barnicle come back saying he does have the tape and he'll provide it if Deadspin ups their dare to fifty grand to a charity. Then we'd see what kind of balls Socca has.
Barnicle is a proven liar and plagiarist, and frankly anyone expressing a healthy skepticism at anything he writes, particularly something that doesn't ring true at first glance, is only being reasonable.

Barnicle, even if his writing was 100% truthful, likely doesn't have any tape. Using one doesn't seem to fit his previous work.
 

nattysez

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At this point Deadspin is throwing shit against the wall and hoping it sticks.

I think that description is exactly right. Daulerio appears to be willing to do whatever Nick Denton or he think will increase pageviews. So, given the pretty robust initial numbers for Grantland, Deadspin is trying to garner pageviews by (1) mimicking the Grantland approach occasionally (Emma Carmichael's piece today being the latest example) and (2) trying to create a high-profile controversy involving Grantland that will get picked up by other blogs and drive traffic to Deadspin. I don't think it's an accident that Magary is FJM'ing Simmons columns over at KSK, either, though I think he'll go back to roasting Peter King once King starts writing again.

Edit: Incidentally, do the Sox players and staff refer to Buchholz as "Buck"? I couldn't figure out why Tito would use Showalter's full name when talking to Theo (he is quoted as doing so in the article), then realized that he might have reflexively done it to differentiate Buck Showalter from Clay.
 

GreenMonster49

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Wow. Five hundred whole dollars, huh? Deadspin really putting its money where its mouth is.

Love to see Barnicle come back saying he does have the tape and he'll provide it if Deadspin ups their dare to fifty grand to a charity. Then we'd see what kind of balls Socca has.
Of course, were Barnicle to do that, he'd have to put up with Deadspin pointing out that he would probably be playing with his wife's money (she's a high muckety-muck at Bank of America and is a director at CVS). Not only would the Deadspinites love doing that, but Barnicle would also hate having his blue-collar image punctured.
 
Sep 27, 2004
5,576
Your worst nightmare
His blue collar image is a fraud and has been forever. That fucker lives in Lincoln and his kids all went to prep schools and said wife rakes in the $$$$. There's nothing real about him. I wouldnt be surprised if he purposely didnt get his teeth fixed so he could look like he was "keeping it real."
 

jose melendez

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Barnicle is a gifted writer, always has been, but he's also a gifted fabulist. Any outlet hiring him instantly loses some credibility in my eyes.

Maybe they should hire Stephen Glass. That guy got some scoops.
 

joe dokes

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I don't get Deadspin's point. They're angry that Barincle used Wikipedia instead of the Census Bureau for the average income? Who gives a shit, it's still not a lot of money. I think that's the point Barnicle was trying to make. And comparing the average income between New Brighton, PA and Brookline, MA was to show that the towns themselves were different. The average family in Brookline made three-to-four times what the folks in New Brighton made. Furthermore, he wasn't saying that Francona was poor and Epstein was rich, he was commenting on the differences of the towns.

One would logically think that the two towns' average family income would make for differences in being raised, which was part of the larger point that they both view the baseball world differently yet are able to work together so that the Red Sox have success. And again, I think that he's right.

Whatever Deadspin's motives, the particular passage from Barnicle -- Terry Francona is 52 years old, a baseball lifer from New Brighton, Penn., where the median annual family income today is roughly $31,000 -- is simply not accurate. Today, that figure is different. His point is correct, that Brookline and New Brighton are financial worlds apart, but the use of "today" is just sloppy. And when an outed plagiarist is "sloppy," it carries a different perception.

I agree that its generally uncool to go hypervigilantly go after all spelling/grammar, etc. in a forum like this one. Not too many here claim to be professional writers. But is it really too "old school" to give a shit about things like spelling, punctuation and use of particular words like "today" in a forum like Grantland that is portraying itself as high end?

And if I had Barnicle's professional past, I'd make damn sure I had my facts straight, or provide attribution.
 

Eric Van

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Yeah, that's good stuff.

I like to think the baseball ops guy in this passage is Eric Van:

That would be awesome.
I actually did give series-by-series lineup advice to Jed Hoyer and Zack Scott, who then made their own recommendations to Tito -- not five hours before a game, a day before the start of the next series. But I knew enough to never recommend sitting the regulars on a national TV game against the Yankees ... and would rarely do so against the Yankees, period. If Mr. Weebles is not aware of where I stand in this debate (e.g., how many times I've had to point out here that players are human beings and not random number generators, and how often I've disagreed with hard-line sabermetric beliefs in general), he's not paying attention.

I can confirm, however, that Mike Lowell never wanted to come out of the lineup no matter how compelling the argument was that he should, and that Tito went along with his wishes. And a compelling argument could never be made from vs.-pitcher matchups anyway, because they have startlingly little predictive value (I never used the numbers versus a specific pitcher, just looked for broader trends like flyball versus groundball). But Lowell had persistent, career-long negative splits relating to certain travel and schedule situations, and tremendous career-long numbers after he sat out a day, so that taking ten or fifteen selected days off would have boosted his rate stats a lot -- so much in fact that his counting stats (other than G) wouldn't even have suffered. But you couldn't get him to sit. Even mid-season when he had already put up a c. 500 OPS on the days when the previous pattern had predicted suckage. The guy just wanted to play every day. So the anecdote in general doesn't ring false.

It's quite possible this happened on 9-15-07, a Saturday game that was probably on Fox. At that point he was 4-22, 2B, 3 BB in his career against Wang. And there may well have been a position in baseball ops for a young guy without a title -- that description fits Zack in 2005, before Jed was promoted from Asst. to the GM to Assistant GM, and Zack got Jed's job.
 

joyofsox

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Francona could have been eating a sandwich when he was talking with Barnicle and could have said the first part of his sentence "Now it's all on these things" taken a bite and said, "computers". Or perhaps he and Barnicle were position in a way where Barnicle couldn't see his lap top, or Francona could have been staring at something else and used the word "computers" to delineate what he was talking about. There a bunch of times where stilted speech comes up in every day conversation.

But getting caught up in minutia like this, doesn't really do Deadspin any favors. It just makes them look small-time.
Agreed. I have yet to read the article, but wouldn't just about every decent writer print that as "Now it's all on computers"? It's not a VERBATIM quote, but it is *exactly* what Francona meant.


delineate

<iframe width="425" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Dr_3S4GcZNo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
 

OzSox

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I really enjoyed the Klosterman piece about the limits of human speed. I thought it was probably the most interesting story I've read on Grantland so far, and I quite like the site in general. I liked the way he quoted both scientists and athletes, and the description of how Bolt is able to run so fast despite his frame was fascinating.
 

Gunfighter 09

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I really enjoyed the Klosterman piece about the limits of human speed. I thought it was probably the most interesting story I've read on Grantland so far, and I quite like the site in general. I liked the way he quoted both scientists and athletes, and the description of how Bolt is able to run so fast despite his frame was fascinating.
'
The article featured one of the best uses of the Grantland footnotes that I have read yet, noting that relative to other mammals, humans are pretty lousy sprinters. It didn't really fit into the article, at least at its current size, but the footnote added to the to the reading experience as a whole.
 

th@tkid

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I don't get Deadspin's point. They're angry that Barincle used Wikipedia instead of the Census Bureau for the average income? Who gives a shit, it's still not a lot of money. I think that's the point Barnicle was trying to make. And comparing the average income between New Brighton, PA and Brookline, MA was to show that the towns themselves were different. The average family in Brookline made three-to-four times what the folks in New Brighton made. Furthermore, he wasn't saying that Francona was poor and Epstein was rich, he was commenting on the differences of the towns.

One would logically think that the two towns' average family income would make for differences in being raised, which was part of the larger point that they both view the baseball world differently yet are able to work together so that the Red Sox have success. And again, I think that he's right.



That's just fucking lame. Francona is a good speaker, but he's not Winston Churchill. There is no way that he said what Barnicle has him saying? None?

Deadspin is really feeling the Grantland heat, I think. And they're striking back, though I'm not sure why. They do two completely different things.
I think it has to do with Simmons taking some writers and trying to get others. Daulerio probably sees it as an act of war..
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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I think it has to do with Simmons taking some writers and trying to get others. Daulerio probably sees it as an act of war..
Are you sure? He didn't seem to angry when Katie Baker left or one of his other writers were close to leaving (he blew the interview). In fact, I thought that Daulerio wrote a couple of laudatory articles about Grantland. And, it seems to me, that in the last three weeks or so has really gone after the site.

I will admit that Daulerio's piece about taking LSD and trying to mimic Dock Ellis' no-hitter was an original idea.
 

JBill

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I don't think that's it, they still have the Masked Man writing his weekly piece for them, and I thought Baker's Deadspin stuff was on the side while she was still employed at Goldman. Craggs ended up not leaving. Plus, it's not like Daulerio is a saint or anything, but this type of pettiness doesn't seem to be totally his style, and he's not the one giving interviews about it. Maybe it's a Nick Denton thing, and Scocca's entire purpose at Deadspin.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Are you sure? He didn't seem to angry when Katie Baker left or one of his other writers were close to leaving (he blew the interview). In fact, I thought that Daulerio wrote a couple of laudatory articles about Grantland. And, it seems to me, that in the last three weeks or so has really gone after the site.

I will admit that Daulerio's piece about taking LSD and trying to mimic Dock Ellis' no-hitter was an original idea.
The key is that there are pretty much two things that run in Gawker blogs' DNA.

1. shamelessly chasing pageviews
2. The ethos that started Gawker, when it was more kinda about something other than just point #1, was snarky jerkwads doing media criticism & gossip.

With those two parameters, going after a popular new ESPN-related venture makes perfect sense for Deadspin to be doing. Whether it's worth reading I leave as an exercise to the reader.
 

JBill

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I really enjoyed the Klosterman piece about the limits of human speed. I thought it was probably the most interesting story I've read on Grantland so far, and I quite like the site in general. I liked the way he quoted both scientists and athletes, and the description of how Bolt is able to run so fast despite his frame was fascinating.
Agreed, that was terrific. Although I made a point to check out Grantland because of Simmons involvement and I hoped this meant he'd be writing more, his output so far hasn't been very good, IMO (aside from his first Lebron column and the podcasts). But Klosterman has been outstanding, and he does the best job incorporating footnotes.
 

mascho

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As someone who really enjoys Tony Kornheiser and hopes that he somehow gets back to writing, I am fascinated by the piece just posted. Apparently the first in a series of "Director's Cuts," in their words, "The Grantland Director's Cut series looks back at classic works of sports journalism and gives the writers, athletes, and other figures involved in making the articles an opportunity to reflect on their work and recall some deleted scenes."

Pretty cool if you ask me.
 

Rook05

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As a fan of the show, the FNL oral history is a great read. I know Berg and Simmons are friends which probably helps with access, but Mays does a good job piecing the story together. The quote about Zucker and his upper east side life was pretty amusing...
 

tims4wins

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This article about the economic cost of the DH makes me really mad. The key piece:

A major league roster has 25 players, but the cost of those players is not evenly distributed, and neither is their impact on the team's success. Most teams carry 11 or 12 pitchers, of whom five starters and perhaps three relievers will play critical roles. A National League roster has eight everyday players and a four- to six-man bench; in the American League, the DH means there's one extra everyday player, generally at the expense of one bench job. Due in part to the expansion of bullpens, platooning is far rarer today than it was two decades ago, so there’s a wide gap in pay and playing time between true regulars and bench players. So, an NL team has about 16 crucial jobs, an AL team 17. But wait: A typical team will be able to fill about seven of those jobs with players who don’t have enough service time to demand high salaries. The reality is that adding another regular can take a team from nine to 10 jobs that truly require a major outlay of cash.

The numbers bear this out. The average AL payroll was $92.8 million from 2006 to 2010, while the average NL payroll was $80.1 million. If you look only at teams with winning records — working under the theory that those are the teams actually trying to spend enough money to compete and succeed — the disparity is even larger: The average winning AL team had a payroll of $108.4 million compared to $88.7 million in the NL. That’s a $20 million-a-year difference.

Is the DH rule to blame for this? It's obviously not the only reason, but certainly it's a contributing factor.
Sounds all well and good. But reality has NOTHING to do with the DH. It has everything to do with the New York Yankees.

If you eliminate the Yankees from the equation, the average AL payroll from 2006 to 2010 was $84M, while the average NL payroll was $80M. However, if you eliminate the Marlins from the NL side of things - since they are so freaking cheap - the average NL payroll becomes, gasp, $83M.

So basically the DH has nothing to do with the payroll discrepancy. It has everything to do with the highest and lowest spending teams in baseball and which leagues they play in. Reverse the teams and the NL suddenly spends more than the AL. And I highly doubt the Yankees payroll would be any different in the NL.
 

sibpin

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Why do they keep fucking with the "If You Missed It" archive? Last week they finally made it nice and easy to browse, now it's empty. Does Grantland even have a web site designer?
 

NatetheGreat

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I loved that FNL oral history. Anyone who liked the show even a little bit should read that.

I also liked both of the Yao pieces, particularly the Jay Caspian King one. But then I've always liked Yao and been fascinated by him.
 

twoBshorty

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Just read the Tito/Theo article and this thread's comments about it. I have a question about this line:

Epstein had just returned from lunch with his father, Leslie Epstein, who retired as head of the creative writing department at Boston University.
Is this really true? I was curious and checked the BU website and there's absolutely no mention of this. Professor Epstein is still listed as head of the program and is all over the department website. Nor is there any mention of it anywhere else on the internet save for Barnicle's article.
 

johnmd20

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Why do they keep fucking with the "If You Missed It" archive? Last week they finally made it nice and easy to browse, now it's empty. Does Grantland even have a web site designer?
Their designer stopped learning code in 2002 because it really is not a well designed site, it's confusing to navigate and it's comical they still don't allow for comments. A Blogspot page created by an 11 year old allows for comments and Grantland doesn't? It's a bit mind boggling but my guess is that Simmons doesn't want to deal with criticism on his own site. The best way to avoid criticism, in fact, is to make all commentary impossible. Yep, those are his managerial decisions.

I liked Klosterman's column about the four best shows on TV, it was excellent. And I love the site overall despite its shortcomings, so I will keep coming back. In general, the stuff put up has been strong.

Also, it didn't take ol' Billy too long to take a two week vacation from writing.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Jun 15, 2002
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Their designer stopped learning code in 2002 because it really is not a well designed site, it's confusing to navigate and it's comical they still don't allow for comments. A Blogspot page created by an 11 year old allows for comments and Grantland doesn't? It's a bit mind boggling but my guess is that Simmons doesn't want to deal with criticism on his own site. The best way to avoid criticism, in fact, is to make all commentary impossible. Yep, those are his managerial decisions.

I liked Klosterman's column about the four best shows on TV, it was excellent. And I love the site overall despite its shortcomings, so I will keep coming back. In general, the stuff put up has been strong.

Also, it didn't take ol' Billy too long to take a two week vacation from writing.
The comments thing has nothing to do with web designers, it's a choice and I think a reasonable one.

It's pretty easy to criticize Grantland without comments, it's not like the internet doesn't have other ways to publish stuff (see Deadspin, see any blog on the internet, see you posting here).

Comments tend to 90% be the shittiest, laziest, zero value crap on the internet unless heavily monitored/moderated. Given that they're trying to build a prestige writing brand of sorts, it makes perfect sense to control every word on their own site.

As for the site design itself, I like it. It's clean, I think the footnote thing works, and I don't really care about the archives because I just let it all pile up in RSS anyways.
 

Shelterdog

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As for the site design itself, I like it. It's clean, I think the footnote thing works, and I don't really care about the archives because I just let it all pile up in RSS anyways.
It might be a little too clean--you just don't see content when you go to it initially. I just went to the site and saw two klondike adds but only the title and author of one story (today's Wright Thompson nolstalgic ode to something dead). Click on the story and you see three subway ads, the title, half of a picture of a barrel of booze, and no story text.
 

Bdanahy14

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Dec 23, 2002
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I'd love for them, at some point, to figure out a way to include a recommendation system. Similar to how Amazon does it... they know what type of articles we read... I'd be happy to click "like" "don't like" after reading to help them narrow down my preference... but we live in a world today where the internet has learned to customize itself to our personal liking's.

There is so much content coming through the site, and with longer pieces, it would be great to have something like that in place.

I have a pretty good bearings on some of the regular contributors - I have enjoyed everything Klosterman's done, most of what Thompson's done, very little of what Lambert has written... but hard for me to find the time to read everything else that comes through the site.

This thread actually has been great for that reason. Please keep referring articles that you guys like - very helpful to the time deprived.
 

JBill

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Aug 17, 2001
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Comments tend to 90% be the shittiest, laziest, zero value crap on the internet unless heavily monitored/moderated. Given that they're trying to build a prestige writing brand of sorts, it makes perfect sense to control every word on their own site.
I agree with this, but according to Simmons in his intro piece, they are planning to enable comments. My guess is that they delayed it to figure out a way to do it without being inundated by trolls, but I think that's pretty near impossible. Plus, add on top of that how buggy the site has been, and I have zero confidence any sort of comment system is going to add anything to the site. I hope they end up scratching that idea.

This thread actually has been great for that reason. Please keep referring articles that you guys like - very helpful to the time deprived.
I enjoyed this one from Katie Baker, about things she'll miss from the NY sports scene now that she's moving to California. But really only for the made up transcript in number 7 from a Mike and the Mad Dog regular segment guessing the ratings:

"IT WAS A TWO-TWO!"

In terms of their regular pop culture-y features, I like their YouTube Hall of Fame posts, that's something I think works really well because of the breadth of their writers. As opposed to their weekly Reality Draft summary, which might work for a one time post, but really falls flat if you're doing it every week, IMO.