Nicolas Stellini of Beyond the Box Score published an article yesterday, and the headline was simple: "Joey Votto is still elite." Personally, I think that says it all, but Stellini feels the need to back up that statement with actual facts, and does so admirably. Although he does acknowledge that Votto is now only the second best first baseman in the league, behind Arizona's Paul Goldschmidt, the article includes lots of fun facts and figures and even a couple of GIF's.
In former Reds news, San Francisco Giants pitcher Mike Leake was placed on the 15 day disabled list yesterday with a strained left hamstring. Evidently he felt some tightness while running "routine sprints" earlier this week, and the Giants felt that the best thing to do is to give him the full 15 days to recover. Leake has made one start for the Giants, taking the loss in that game, since the Giants gave up a top prospect in trade for him. While it's tough to feel too much sympathy for a team that's won three World Series in five years, that is a bummer for the Giants. Get well soon, Mike.
Earlier this week, Ben Popper of the Verge published an absolutely fascinating (if somewhat long) history of MLB Advanced Media, the tech team behind MLB.tv. While some of the tech talk is was a bit over my head (the sentence, "[MLB Advanced Media] figured out compression, geofencing, and multi-platform delivery at scale" probably means something to somebody, but nothing to me), it's a very interesting look at how MLB has positioned itself at the forefront of live streaming media, and how poised they are to make real money from that by partnering with entities such as HBO and the NHL. Definitely worth a read, especially if you are of a more technical bent than I am.
In a related story, the Fields of Green blog notes that with the deal MLB has with the DraftKings "fantasy sports" site, as well as MLB Advanced Media's earning potential, revenue is "flowing into MLB at a rate far outpacing how much is getting spent on players." The article notes that since 2002, player salary has dropped from 56% of revenue to just 38%. Anyone still complaining that baseball players as a group are overpaid would do well to remember how much better paid the owners are, and nobody's buying a ticket to watch the owners.
The Hiroshima Carp baseball team wore special uniforms this past Thursday in recognition of the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of that city. All the players wore number 86, a reference to the date, and the word "Peace" on their chests and "Hiroshima" on their backs. Craig Calcaterra links to a few interesting articles about that event, all of which are absolutely worth your time.
Finally, a large group of people watched a man throw an appliance further than anyone has ever thrown that appliance before. Congratulations, Sean McCarthy, for being the best ever at throwing that appliance.