August 8, 2008

Link-O-Rama

  • My first attempt at publicly shaming myself into re-starting a weight-loss plan failed, as displaying my complete lack of progress via the sidebar's Fat-O-Meter apparently wasn't sufficiently motivating. Sadly I'm still way too fat after gaining back a big chunk of the 90-plus pounds that were shed a couple years ago, so it's time to give the public humiliation angle a second chance. My current plan is to update the Fat-O-Meter every morning, which will hopefully provide the extra push needed to keep me on track.

    My latest weight-loss effort kicked off Monday and I'm already down a half-dozen pounds, so for now at least my spirits are high enough to be optimistic. My kitchen is once again filled with relatively healthy food and the dust has been removed from my elliptical machine, so we'll see. Unfortunately having lost 90 pounds previously may actually work against me now, because it's incredibly depressing to know that you ate away all that hard work and must climb the mountain all over again.

    Those of you who couldn't possibly care less about my weight can avoid the topic by averting your gaze from the relatively small area on the sidebar. Those of you who are interested in my progress can keep updated daily and are encouraged to send me tersely worded e-mails if the Fat-O-Meter stalls or starts going in the wrong direction. Oh, and if you have any low-calorie food recommendations that a person completely incapable of cooking can handle, feel free to pass them along.

  • Evidence of being artificially enhanced seems to run in the Bonds family.
  • If you've ever wanted to see Joe Mauer wearing a top hat and bow-tie while standing next to the guy who sings "The Joe Mauer Theme" song ... well, it's your lucky day.
  • Comment of the Week, courtesy of a guy named "Niko" from the comments section of a LaVelle E. Neal III blog entry asking his readers at the Minneapolis Star Tribune's website to suggest other sites that should be added to his blogroll:
    get rid of Gleeman's, he's the biggest waste of space in blogging. the guy thinks he knows it all, but his lack of knowledge is ridiculous, and the press he gets around the twin cities is appalling.

    Amen.

  • Tom Froemming is attempting to put together a comprehensive directory of Minnesota sports blogs, which should come in handy for the people who e-mail me asking to recommend Timberwolves and Vikings blogs. So far there are 77, 29 of which focus on the Twins and one of which focuses half on the Twins and half on Keeley Hazell (although not this week, as my Hazell scouts failed to send in a single link). Once LEN3 rids himself of the scourge that is a link here, he should check out Froemming's list.
  • As the St. Paul Pioneer Press notes--"reports" seemed like way too strong a word--one of the Vikings "estimates that he is one of the top 100 Guitar Hero players in the world." You get exactly one guess which position he plays:


    "Amazing! He hits every note, doesn't miss."
  • One week after failing to acquire LaTroy Hawkins for what likely would have been little more than a marginal prospect, the Twins watched yesterday as an even better veteran reliever switched teams at a reasonable cost. Chad Bradford was sent from the Orioles to the Rays for a player to be named later, and because Tampa Bay has the AL's second-best record that means the Twins failed to even submit a waiver claim for him despite obvious bullpen problems.

    A side-arming right-hander who induces an extreme number of ground balls, Bradford has a 3.31 ERA in 486.1 career innings, including a 2.45 mark this year. He's owed $1.2 million for the rest of 2008 (about what the Twins saved by dumping Livan Hernandez) and will make a very palatable $3.5 million next season. Over the past three years, Bradford has a 2.96 ERA and 3.14 FIP. During that same span, Matt Guerrier has a 3.19 ERA and 4.25 FIP, while Jesse Crain has a 3.70 ERA and 3.87 FIP.

  • Suffice it to say that Jim Caple of ESPN.com (and formerly the Pioneer Press) agrees with me about what the save statistic has done to bullpens.
  • Shockingly, no one from the comments section here was featured in this article.
  • After months of extremely careful consideration my spectacular(ly awful) beard has been shaved into a thoroughly mediocre goatee, although this look might be next on the agenda.
  • Yesterday afternoon the Mets' bullpen continued their season-long habit of blowing leads for Johan Santana. Scott Schoeneweis serving up a mammoth homer to Jody Gerut marked the sixth time in 24 starts that Santana has seen a potential victory wiped away by the bullpen, with five of those would-be wins vanishing in the ninth inning. Santana is just 9-7 despite a 2.85 ERA that ranks fifth in the NL, thanks largely to getting stuck with seven no-decisions in starts where he's allowed two runs or fewer.
  • Given the current state of the newspaper world, for some reason it amuses me that the Star Tribune felt the need to send Jim Souhan to China to cover the Olympics. After all, what would the Olympics be without poultry humor and decade-old pop-culture references. Thankfully, Souhan's colleague Patrick Reusse has remained stateside in order to write his 50th consecutive column on golf.
  • It may not seem like it based on this gorgeous photo of him, but Artie Lange and rehab go together like peanut butter and jelly (or bloggers and parents' basements). "Fiyah!"
  • For those of you who are up early this morning, consider tuning into KFAN radio at around 8:00 a.m. to hear my weekly segment on "The Power Trip Morning Show" with Mike Morris, Cory Cove, and Chris Hawkey. You can listen online by clicking here and we usually take a bunch of phone-in questions.

    UPDATE: That was interesting. My segment on KFAN got pushed back 25 minutes or so because Joe Rogan of UFC, News Radio, Fear Factor, and stand-up comedy fame showed up at the studio early to talk about Brock Lesnar's fight Saturday night. I'm a big Rogan fan and he was fantastic on the air, so it was an honor (relatively speaking) to get bumped for him.

  • Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Eric Hutchinson doing an acoustic version of "Rock & Roll" while standing by himself against a wall at some radio station:


  • Once you're done here, check out my latest "Daily Dose" column over at Rotoworld.

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