The Day the Statistics Died…and the Jerod Morris Hex Was Born

Midwest Sports FansAnalyst IJune 18, 2009

I will allow my foray into blogger-self-absorption to continue for at least one more post. And really, when will I ever have this opportunity again?

I’m certainly not, however, going to acquiesce and provide an analysis for this guy, who is attempting to discern the reasons for Derek Jeter’s suddenly improved defense.

Jeter is one of the few guys, like Ibanez, that I think has never used any PEDs. But there’s no telling where another post with that as the hypoethesis could lead…

Besides, Derek Jeter is also on my fantasy team and I am enjoying his very solid season. The last thing I would want to do is put him at risk for…


(Cue: Ominous music…dum, dum, DUM!)

The good folks over at Circle the Bases have now compared me to John Madden and the infamous hex that accompanies his video game. With Raul Ibanez hitting the DL today, Circle the Bases is attributing it to the only possible explanation: the Jerod Morris blogger hex. And they have objective statistics that make this worthy of speculation:

Two weeks after setting off the latest mainstream-versus-blogger firestorm by freaking out over “some 42-year-old blogger typing in his mother’s basement” Raul Ibanez has been placed on the disabled list with a strained left groin. Coincidence? Of course. But still.

Ibanez, who had avoided the DL since 2004, was just 5-for-27 (.185) with 11 strikeouts since calling one of Morris’ blog entries about him “pathetic and disgusting” and struggled to run out ground balls recently, so the Phillies decided to shut him down for at least a couple weeks.

As I have chronicled ad nauseum, Raul Ibanez has been the centerpiece of my fantasy team’s great two-month start to 2009. Now that the Jerod Morris hex has struck him down, I will be missing one of the best bats in my lineup. And in case Ibanez still holds me in the same amount of contempt as he appeared to upon initially hearing of my post, he will be happy to know that my own hex has also hurt me, with Roy Halladay, Scott Downs, and Denard Span also being DL’d since I wrote it.

I am making light of this because the notion of a hex named after me is hilarious and ridiculous, but I am only doing so to mask my despondence. I was enjoying Ibanez’s start independent of his presence on my fantasy team. I’ve always liked him and he seems perfectly deserving of this type of career year. Granted, I was quite happy that he was doing so on my team, but now he will have to languish on my and the Phillies’ DL until his groin heels. And that’s not a positive for anyone.

Just bad news all around. And to think, if I’d just decided to write about the NBA Finals or the White Sox on that fateful Monday morning last we could have ostensibly avoided all of this.

Still, all was not lost today. On Deadspin’s weekly podcast called the “Deadcast”, famed blog lover Buzz Bissinger provided one of the funniest sound bytes I’ve heard in a long time. While discussing the Raul Ibanez-MSF story, he attempts to lay blame at the feet of the first entity that linked to the now-infamous post.

Unfortunately, Buzz does not seem to know the difference between Harold Reynolds — the man and former baseball player — and Hugging Harold Reynolds — the great blog written by white dudes.

However, as Dan Levy points out to Drew, his message might be somewhat lost as it appears Buzz hasn’t brushed up on his homework on the situation, and inexplicitly calls out MLB Network’s All-Star personality (and this site’s namesake), Harold Reynolds.

Buzz: “Harold Reynolds picks it up, and puts it up on his website. And then before you know it its all over the place. I think Reynolds was really wrong. I think it was, um you know, really sloppy on his part.”

Jump over to HHR to listen to clip in question. It’s beautiful.

On this sad day when the Jerod Morris Hex was born as Raul Ibanez’s incredible statistics died (at least for 15 days), at least laughter and levity didn’t die as well.