They are making Negro Leagues stamps? Awesome.
Without getting into subjective things like game calling and pitch framing, Mike from River Ave. Blue attempted to quantify the defensive contributions of Major League catchers, with emphasis of course on Jorge Posada and Francisco Cervelli. Using stolen bases, caught stealing, wild pitches and passed balls, Mike created cRSAA/180 (Catcher's Runs Saved Above Average per 180 innings). A key point: it's a good thing Cervelli is hitting, because he's not the defensive whiz he was in the minors.
According to a survey conducted among MLB players by Sports Illustrated, Joba Chamberlain is the most overrated player in the league and by more than double the next closest guy (A-Rod, obviously). Translation: guys who play for other clubs really don't like him and resent the attention he got when he first broke into the league. Does he get more recognition than he deserves because of his unique name and what he did in 2007? Absolutely. Do people who look at baseball objectively overvalue what he does? I don't think so.
Sparked by a conversation on Google Reader about a paragraph on Rob Neyer's blog by two of the guys from IIATMS, Moshe Mandel from TYU talked a little bit about what makes a team "championship-caliber". I agree with Moshe: we don't need to get ahead of ourselves, but if the Yankees don't deserve that distinction right now, then no team does.
Speaking of those gents from IIATMS, they, along with a few others, wrote a trade deadline primer which you can purchase here for $10. It's packed with information about where the Yankees stand and who they might be looking to fill some of the gaps in their roster with.
According to TiqIQ, who has a really cool partnership with River Ave. Blues, the secondary market prices were climbing for Friday night's game even before it was announced that the Yankees would be honoring George Steinbrenner and Bob Sheppard. The fact that is the first home game since the 4th of July on a Friday night certainly is helping raise those prices.
Is it just me, or does The Boss deserve a better commemorative patch than this. Bob Sheppard's, on the other hand, is pretty sharp.
Red Sox fans payed tribute to George Steinbrenner and Bob Sheppard and were respectful about it. Seriously.
Hey look, the All-Star Game got the lowest ratings of all time. It might have been the interminable pregame ceremonies or the 8:50PM ET start, but I'd like to think that, without a hook like the last year of Yankee Stadium or something, mostly because of the infinite pitching changes and cameos by position players the ASG really just sucks. This isn't Little League, not everyone has to appear in the damn game.
You probably noticed that the radar gun was lighting up on Tuesday night. The appropriately-named Mike Fast at The Hardball Times looks into whether or not the readings were accurate.
In response to an email from a Twitter follower, Jonah Keri put together "a few" (more like a dozen) thoughts on some of the deeper (social, racial) implications of the Yunel Escobar for Alex Gonzalez trade.
Minor league maven John Sickels projected Major League character Rick "Wild Thing" Vaughn's career statistics. Unsurprisingly, his propensity for free passes kept him from being truly dominant.
Ben Nicholson-Smith from MLBTR had an excellent profile of Daniel Nava, who signed with the Red Sox for a whopping $1 back in 2008 and is producing for the Big Leauge club now.
Not golf-related, but Wright Thompson has a typically great feature piece up at ESPN.com about the history of St. Andrews. A nice companion piece to some early morning British Open viewing, I say.
Perhaps you heard about the suicide bombings that took place in Kampala, Uganda that targeted a viewing of the World Cup final at a rugby club. Well, my sister is actually in Kampala right now. She was nowhere near the bombings and is just fine, but if you'd like to read her reaction to the attacks, here it is.
My buddy Frank has tickets to the Lacrosse World Championships, which had to be reshuffled because English officials initially wouldn't accept the hand-written passports presented by the Iroquois Nation's team.
It's not at all sports-related, but here is a great story about the guy did an incredible amount of research before he appeared on Price is Right and whose appearance culminated with him guessing the exact price of the Showcase Showdown. But was it just preparation and luck? The producers of the show think the fix was in.