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Hey Scott, I appreciated your article on Pat Venditte. I remember hearing about when the Pat Venditte rule was instituted. I love baseball and I feel as though cool stories on smaller, less heard of baseball stars are really fun to read. I suppose you are at Spring Training right now, so if you could, it would be very interesting to see you talk to some smaller stars about their first Spring Training, or how it is to play with these stars. Thanks for being a great baseball writing inspiration! And also, what do you think of the 20 second "Shot Clock" the MLB has used in the Fall League and do you think it will ever reach the majors?
Hey Scott, I enjoyed reading your article about Manfred's future as the new Commish. I just wanted to get your opinion on one of the points: Do you think that eliminating shifts is really a good idea for the game? I'd say that it's become such a widely used strategy that to do this would negatively impact the game in a big way. What do you think of tweaking the intentional walk? Maybe giving the better 2 bases instead of 1?
Hey Scott... I completely agree with you about not voting for the PED tained players and those that leave little doubt. I love baseball and I feel CHEATED by those players. I don't care how "great" they were, they cheated and did it knowingly. I feel bad for Pete Rose. He was an amazing athlete and should be in the Hall because of his playing career. I can't understand why he can't be pardoned when Mark McGuire is allowed to coach !! Such hypocrisy !!!
Your points are valid, Adam, and well-argued. Couple of my thoughts -- first, I did not have a Cy Young vote in 2012. Dickey getting it may have had as much to do with his best-selling book that summer as with his pitching! Kershaw could have won it that year. Kimbrel, too. The entire closer issue is another angle to the never ending debates that goes to your point about there not being more defined parameters. Some folks don't value closers as much as others. I do know when I vote Cy Young, I like the combination of dominance plus workload. I look hard at innings pitched and batters faced -- for me, that separates the brilliance of great ERAs, WHIPs, etc: If you've got 4 pitchers who are great, but one of them worked 20 or 30 more innings than the rest, I give that guy extra credit. Now, obviously, closers don't have heavy workloads. But, they appear in more games. Generally, I lean toward starting pitchers in Cy Young race because I think they have so much more to do with how a team's season goes. But there is no question Kimbrel was utterly dominant in 2012 and, probably, didn't receive nearly the credit he should have.
Hey Scott, the only issue I have with how these votes are viewed pertaining to the MVP and Cy Young award is how there are not more defined parameters. In one instance you can state that giving Kershaw your vote for MVP was because he had an historical season, but someone like Craig Kimbrel gets passed up on Cy Young in 2012 when he has the greatest season any reliever has ever had. It seems standards are all over the board for these 2 awards. Should a pitcher get the MVP, or should a reliever get the Cy Young? I have no idea how you voted in 2012 for Cy Young but wouldn't the thought process you just used be applied to this similar situation? Nobody was more dominant the Kimbrel in 2012. He struck out almost half the batters he faced, had an ERA of 1.01 and a WHIP of .654. R.A. Dickey had a nice year but it wasn't historic by any means.
I feel like pitchers have their own "MVP" award in the Cy Young and position players should be exclusive to the MVP award. Like anything else, that's just my opinion. I think baseball probably likes the vagueness of parameters because it causes instances like this where fans and writers can debate and talk about the game into the offseason. Just my 2 cents.
Hey Steve, thanks for the note and so sorry it took me this long to see it! Appreciate the note and appreciate you looking to give Jules some credit. Interesting that when I talked to Tom, she did not come up. Very interesting that you sat on the interview and gave Tom time to complete the SI story before running the interview! What's Jules up to today? And you??
Hey, Scott: Excellent piece on Caminiti. I think you captured him and his era very well. For the record, though, there was a small interim step taken before Caminiti gave his groundbreaking interview to Tom Verducci. The person who accomplished this, Jules Bailey, deserves some credit. Jules was a producer at CNN/Sports Illustrated as the channel was in its final death throes. For many of the reasons you and Tom cite, we were quite convinced that if any Major Leaguer were to break the silence it would be Caminiti. For one thing, he was in that stage of treatment, as Tom notes, that requires honesty and reflection. I assigned Jules to follow Ken everywhere, for more than two months, until he was ready to talk. And he did, at the huge biker rally in Laughlin, Nev. It was a brief interview, and Caminiti was guarded in casting blame across the league, but on camera he confessed that he had used steroids throughout his 1996 MVP season. We sat on this interview until Tom could complete his article for SI (a fact that made my colleagues at CNN none too happy), and the dominoes began falling. I think that with his cover story for SI Tom did more than any individual to turn the tide against steroids in baseball. But Jules deserves a smidgen of credit as well for her doggedness and success in persuading Caminiti to talk.
Scott, would you be available for Radio interview at Fox Sports Radio Affiliate Jock 98.7 sometime this week? you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hey Robby, thanks for passing that along, great stuff