February 17, 2012

Link-O-Rama

• I'll be hanging out at Smalley's 87 Club in downtown Minneapolis tonight, raising money for charity and supporting Lindsay Guentzel's bid for the "MLB Fan Cave" contest. My podcast co-host John Bonnes will also be there, along with Nick Nelson and Parker Hageman. And depending on how things go, we might even record a "Gleeman and The Geek" episode in front of an actual audience for the first time. Here are the details:

Who: Gleeman, Bonnes, Guentzel, Nelson, Hageman, and more

What: Blogger get-together, MLB Fan Cave voting party, charity fundraiser

Where: Smalley's 87 Club at 100 Sixth Street downtown

When: 7:00 p.m. Friday night, February 17

Why: Drink beer, talk Twins, win prizes

It'll be fun, trust me.

• I've spent 29 years thinking I was pretty weird, but then I read about this guy.

Jeff Sullivan at SB Nation collected footage of the 10 worst swings of the 2011 season.

• I can't imagine why Ricky Rubio wouldn't spend $500,000 on this.

• If you've ever wondered what famous literary characters would look like if drawn by police sketch artists, this is your lucky day.

• When does getting cut from a basketball team qualify as the good news? When the reason you were cut involves "male enhancement pills."

• I normally mock people who bring signs to sporting events, but this is an obvious exception.

• My beloved Hardball Dynasty league on WhatIfSports.com starts a new season next week. If you're interested in joining, click here for more details.

Louis C.K. is nearly everyone's favorite comedian at this point, but only because he evolved:

On a related note: George Carlin was pretty great.

• After being on life support for years my 1994 Grand Am finally died. I'm having a difficult time deciding on a replacement, in part because it would be nearly impossible to pick a car that wasn't a huge upgrade and in part because I know absolutely nothing about cars. I drive so infrequently that spending more than, say, $5,000-$7,500 seems sort of silly, which has me wondering if leasing might be my best option.

An argument against leasing is that you don't own the car, but if you're only spending $7,500 to begin with owning that car a few years later barely has value anyway. For similar money in a cheap lease you can get a significantly newer, better car for three years. My dream scenario is that a nice reader with a car dealership wants to trade an inexpensive lease for Official Car Dealership of AG.com status and various other ads/plugs, but I'd settle for some advice.

• What did Royals fans do to deserve this?

• Quote of the week, from television writer Alan Sepinwall about Los Angeles Times columnist Bill Plaschke playing himself on Luck: "The sabermetric side of me can't stand the guy."

Jon Heyman can't stop being Jon Heyman.

Tony Gwynn had a facial nerve transplant during a 14-hour surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from his cheek, which is yet another reminder that using smokeless tobacco is stupid.

Matthew Leach is almost as good at photo-bombing as he is at writing for MLB.com.

• Also good at photo-bombing? Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate Lizzy Caplan.

Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition cover model Kate Upton is helping Justin Verlander, David Price, C.J. Wilson, and Jay Bruce sell video games:

There are so many possibilities for a joystick-related joke that I'm not even going to make one.

• Texas Christian University is apparently a lot more fun than the name would suggest.

• How did Allen Iverson burn through $150 million by age 35? Practice.

• If you've ever seen me reference the "defensive spectrum" and wondered what it meant, read this article by friend of AG.com Jay Jaffe.

• As an 18-year-old wannabe writer I attended a sports journalism event at the University of Minnesota during the Final Four in 2001. Lots of big-name media members were there, but none impressed me more than Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe. This week he announced his upcoming retirement on Bill Simmons' podcast.

• In light of his Grammy performance earlier this week, it's important to remember certain things about Chris Brown.

• Netflix recommendation: I put off watching Buck despite hearing it was great because a documentary about a horse trainer didn't sound all that interesting, but ... it's great.

• Baseball Prospectus should definitely give Kevin Goldstein's girlfriend her own column.

Carl Pavano got married, apparently.

• It's now the law that the Twins and White Sox are "arch rivals."

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Whitney Houston singing a live version of "How Will I Know" from 1986:

  • KW

    I have always liked your mix of pop culture and baseball, but today I am especially glad you linked back to the facts about Chris Brown. How tone-deaf from the folks who put on the Grammys, especially given that he has never even attempted to sound sorry and continues to goad his “haters.”

  • http://twinkietown.com SHS

    Ahhh, nice way to commemerate Whitney Houston with a tribute to one of her songs.

    You know Gleeman, somebody i CAN”T stop listening to is Foster the People. maybe you’ll like their music too.
    Songs:
    -Call it what you want (color on the walls)
    -Helene Beat
    -Houdini
    -I’d do anything for you
    -Pumped up kicks.

    Foster the people is definately one of my favorite Bands out there now, Black Keys, are solid also.

  • Jeff

    Here’s my car advice: If you want something that’s not going to depreciate from $6000 to $0 in four years, don’t buy something nobody wants like a 2004 Taurus. Ick. Buy something that people find desirable, which in this town is anything with AWD. Like a Subaru Impreza. It’ll be more fun in the snow *and* it’ll hold a little value. Oh and buy a wagon or hatch back. They’re just better – you’ll understand when you have one that it just makes way more sense.

  • http://twinkietown.com SHS

    *make that Helena Beat.

  • Brian

    Just a suggestion if you’re shopping around for cars. Nissans are fantastic cars and almost never have any non general wear and tear issues. I’ve owned mine for six years, and I have a couple other friends in the same boat that would also sing their praise. Treat the advice as you will, but good luck on the shopping.

  • Bill

    The common man is selling his Mercedes.

  • Jeff

    More cars: if you go new, the Chevrolet Sonic and the Honda Fit are supposed to be among the best small new cars. Another older car that might hold some value (but no AWD) would be a Volkswagen Golf.

  • Ben
  • Martin Arrowsmith

    Can’t go wrong with a Subaru….

  • Todd

    Car Advice .. for Minnesota, buy a turn of the century Pathfinder .. will go for 200K+ miles with relatively low maintenance. Should be able to get one for around 7500 with a little over 100K miles. Not too big prior to 2003 and will have 4WD for driving in the winter. I assume mpg not a big concern for you.

  • JB (the Original)

    Aaron, did you know that Smalley’s 87 Club is closing down after this weekend?

    http://blogs.citypages.com/food/2012/02/smalleys_87_club_closing.php

  • Mark

    seems kind of stupid to close Smalley’s 87 Club right before the season starts

  • AM.

    Go for the lease. You clearly want to, you want a newer car, and you probably spend more money on repairs for an older used car that the difference would be almost negligible.

    You can get some affordable deals with no money down, as well.

  • jim cowling

    Fiat was advertising lease a Fiat 500 for $199 per month and no money down. The perfect car for one who does not drive far. I recommend you check it out. These is a dealer in Inver Grove Heights.

    Maybe Jennifer Lopez will ride with you.

  • JustSayin

    “Carlin was pretty great.”

    The words you were looking for were “unquestioned greatest comedic ever.”

    ftfy.