Thursday, May 13, 2010

Thursday Morning Linkarooski

As we mentioned a couple of times yesterday, Jay-Z and Eminem were slated to show up in the Yankees' broadcast booth during the second half of the doubleheader, and turned out that they were on air during the only inning during which Phil Hughes' had any trouble - the fourth.

The two renegades were there to announce two shows that they are playing in September - one at Comerica on the 2nd and the other at Yankee Stadium on the 13th. Appropriately, Jay-Z will headline the show in New York - the first concert at the new place and his first show in a stadium anywhere - and Eminem will take top billing for the one in Detroit.

During their time in the booth, Michael Kay said Eminem's new song "Not Afraid" was only the second ever to debut at #1 on the Billboard charts. Um, it's the 16th. No one batted an eyelash at that and surprisingly, the most awkward moment belonged to Ken Singleton. Kenny had apparently been told that Eminem did "poetry" nearby the current location of Comerica Park "back in the day". Em's response, "Um, Poetry?"

Jay-Z attempted to steer the conversation back on track by clarifying that "Rap is poetry" and they eventually changed the subject.

Other highlights:
  • Jay-Z bragged about getting Betty White's number when he met her on Saturday Night Live and said he and Eminem were going on a double date with her and "the othah one". Michael Kay then clarified it was Rue McClanahan he was talking about and Eminem said they actually had to get going and meet up with them.

  • Em said that, in light of what they did in the draft, he can't remember the last time he's felt this good about the Detroit Lions, which is not saying all that much.

  • He then sabotaged any and all of his credibility by saying he was also a Cowboys fan.

  • Michael Kay referred to "Lose Yourself" as "one of the best songs ever" and claimed that he works out to it and it was the reason that "he's the shape he's in",
Like any other guest appearance it totally detracted from what was going on in the game, but as far as these promotional things are concerned, it wasn't that bad. Fortunately, the first time around I was watching without any sound and it didn't make a difference at all.

Now, onto the rest of the links:
Andy Pettitte wanted to pitch yesterday but he still has to throw one more "downhill" session (off a mound) before he can rejoin the rotation.

After six long weeks languishing in the top 5, the Yankees have finally ascended #1 of the Beyond the Box Score power rankings, which are based solely on the team's statistical output this year. Incredibly, the Red Sox, whose Pythagorean winning percentage is a humble .484, have played like the fourth best team in the league, according to BtB.

Via Lisa at Subway Squawkers, here is a ranking of the Yankees' warm up jackets over the years. I like the ones that say "Yankees" across the front as opposed to the ones with the interlocking NY, but I've always felt that wearing a warm up jacket out with casual clothes looks kind of weird.

On the heels of the AP story about teams scouting umpires that we linked to on Tuesday, Jeremy Greenhouse of Baseball Analysts attempted find evidence of pitchers altering their approach based on who was behind the plate.

Navin Vaswami's road trip swung through Chicago this week, first stopping at Wrigley and then the Cell. You can also check out the photo album from his trip right here.

Big League Stew has the video of Dallas Braden's appearance on Letterman, including the top 10 thoughts that were going through his mind when he was pitching on Sunday. Carig has the transcription of that list.

The Wall Street Journal's sports section hasn't been around for very long but they are already cranking out crusty and nostalgic pieces like this one about the good ol' days when batters didn't dare step out of the box, lest Bob Gibson fire one at their head.

Via the Book Blog, here is an incredibly deep analysis of wind effects on baseball parks.

The greatest thing about being rich and famous? People give you shit for free. Reminds me of the end of this Louis CK bit.

Via Jonah, this tumblr site is sheer brilliance. Similarly, so is this shirt.

Also from Mr. Keri, Bloomberg Sports has upped the ante with Mustrash Talk, a series of videos of Keith Hernandez giving you the business about the goings on in your fantasy league.

At Walkoff Walk, Dan McQuade notes that if the Phillies aren't duplicating the oldest trick in the book by stealing signs with binoculars and the bullpen phone, it's pretty damn close. Meech from the Fightins' found visual evidence that the Phils' bullpen coach does indeed have "opera glasses".

What do Mike Sweeney and Carmello Anthony have in common? Neither tolerates snitchin'.

An interesting tidbit about the upcoming season of It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia.

Did you know that you can get a DWI on a golf cart? Thankfully there aren't very many cops patrolling the links or we'd all be screwed.

Could the Super Bowl be coming to New York in 2014? The wheels are in motion.

They found a hole in space. Whaaaa? Wrap your head around that one without it exploding.
Amidst all the action yesterday, we neglected to wish Yogi Berra a happy birthday. Happy belated 85th, Yogi, and many more.


  1. To be fair, it was only the second RAP song to ever debut at #1.

  2. re: the golf carts. I believe in New York the law is that you can get a DUI while driving any "motorized" vehicle drunk. Which would include golf carts. But I work at a golf course, if people started getting DUI's there the sport would probably shutdown. Or at least there would be no more golf carts. Not to mention how many cops are the ones driving the carts around.

  3. Jason from The Heartland5/13/10, 11:50 AM

    I for one would love to see the Super Bowl in an outdoor cold-weather stadium. I've always felt that it's a gross injustice, as well as rank hypocrisy, for the NFL to not just acknowledge but structure home-field in the playoffs to allow for whatever weather comes the teams' way through the confernce championship games--all the while playing up the traditions and history of "The Frozen Tundra" of Lambeau, the snowy Buffalo winters (back when they used to qualify for the playoffs, Ahem, spoken as a Bills fan)--then to scurry to the near-tropics for the Super Bowl to appease the super-rich floating mega-bucks for grossly inflated tickets. Let them and the fans sit in actual football weather, like the NFL and AFL used to do before the merger, and like the CFL still often does. Watching the Super Bowl played in 11 degree weather after a night with a foot of snow would be TREMENDOUS.

    Plus, there seems to be a movement that some might term "purist" but I might call marketing historical memory in sports nowadays, with the NHL Winter Classic, college hockey outside, and the possibility of an NY Super Bowl, on which the NFL might capitalize. That there will be an outdoor, cold-weather college football bowl game in Yankee Stadium is one additional move in the direction, and that is to return sports to venues and spaces from which they at times erroneously veered. That is, while air conditioning and exceedingly lenient water policies in the Southwest have allowed cold-weather sports like hockey to be played in Arizona, Florida, and California, there is some clever market at work in drawing hockey back outside and, potentially, in getting a Super Bowl in early February in NY. It will draw upon people's memories of playing and watching football "back in the day," drawing upon a somewhat idealized but also real past, to shape a future different from what we as fans have experienced, which is for the NFL this stale exercise in broad-based mass consumption, with the Super Bowl now serving (poorly, to me) as catch-all across demographics. It may be an exaggeration to say that football "is meant to be played" in cold weather. However, that it HAS been played in cold weather, and that so many classic games, moments, and experiences have occurred and been formed as a result, is something that sports, especially image-savvy sports such as football, would be wise to consider. Look how hockey has taken off, very astutely making the grand success of the Buffalo-Pittsburgh Winter Classic on New Year's Day a regular event on New Year's not just carving out a niche in what has long been college football territory, but returning hockey to sports and media prominence after the 2004-2005 NHL lockout effectively ended the NHL's national media exposure in the US for several years. The lockout canceled the last year of ESPN's contract with hockey, and it hasn't signed a major network deal since. The Winter Classic, a game wholly wrapped around the idea and game itself returned to an outdoor frozen pond, combined with important rule changes such as eliminating the two-line pass, has done much to make the NHL exciting and perhaps relevant again as a major sport in America in a way that hasn't happened for more than half a decade.

    Lastly, halftime shows with a few has-beens farting out painful, banal, poorly-performed versions of formerly classic songs can at worst serve as pathetically lame, often domed pseudo-concerts. It's time to move away from that nonsense, especially after this past Super Bowl--the game was great; the halftime show was the pits. The Who is a prime example of a trend that ought to die. If the Super Bowl is played outside in sub-freezing temperatures to relieve us of that squalid tripe, and I very much like The Who up to the mid-1970s, let it ALWAYS be played outside.

  4. Man. If I had seen this in the AM, I would have saved myself the trouble of writing my post about it!

    I hate repetitive stuff on the interwebs!!!

    I have the full video of the awkwardness embedded over at NYY Stadium Insider (along with my take on the situation), if anyone is interested: