Erardi: Why Joey Votto's RBI total matters
The always excellent John Erardi and some guy named Joel Luckhaupt investigated the disappearance of Votto's RBI and doubles this year. They found that two key underlying numbers explain the lack of RBI. One, Votto just isn't hitting with many people on the bases this year, relative to teammates Brandon Phillips and Jay Bruce. Votto frequently walks in these situations as well. Two, he's driving in a lower percentage of the runners on base this year, but this is not a real concern. This percentage fluctuates pretty drastically year-to-year for many players. Again, Votto is walking a great deal, which also affects his chances.
The Hardball Times: Baseball’s craziest game?
Shane Tourtellotte provides us with an extensive recap of a notable Mets-Reds game from 27 years ago. Many of you will remember the game due to the 10th inning brawl between Ray Knight and Eric Davis. Both benches cleared, and Davey Johnson had to cobble together a defensive lineup from spare parts (Gary Carter ended up playing third base). The game must have been a lot of fun.
ESPN New York: Alfonso Soriano traded to Yankees
The trade of Chicago Cubs outfielder Alfonso Soriano to the New York Yankees was finalized Friday after he officially waived his no-trade clause, sources told ESPN.
Of the estimated $24.5 million Soriano is owed through the end of next season, the Cubs are going to pick up about $17.7 million and the Yankees will cover the remaining $6.8 million, sources said. Soriano is scheduled to make $18 million next season, $5 million of which will be paid by the Yankees, the sources said.
As Joe Sheehan pointed out on Twitter, the Yankees now have nine players who will earn at least $15 million this season compared to 12 such players for the other 14 AL teams combined.
Keri: Forget PEDs, Baseball Is Fun As Hell Right Now
Amen, Jonah Keri. One of the reasons I like Keri's writing so much is that he gets us. He knows how much fun baseball is for us, because it's still a lot of fun for him. There are way too many writers who became bored with baseball years ago and would rather stir up shit for page clicks than talk about the game. No one will ever confuse Jonah Keri for one of those guys.
Deadspin: What I Learned From A Year Of Watching SportsCenter
Patrick Burns confirmed what many of us suspected when he watched every 11 o'clock edition of SportsCenter for an entire year: The show gives a disproportionate amount of attention to the NFL. The article has lots of great graphs that quantify ESPN's biases and favorite narratives. I'm not sure how much I can complain though when one of my favorite teams is among the most overrepresented. Hat-tip to RussellMeTimber for the link.