July 1, 2011

Link-O-Rama

This week's Link-O-Rama is sponsored by Wholesale Gold and Diamond Distributors in Minneapolis, so please help support AG.com by considering them for your jewelry needs ...

• Baseball is nice and all, but I think I've finally found my sport.

• I wish Otis Redding would come out with as much post-death material at Tupac.

• Thankfully they didn't print any of my personal information. How embarrassing.

• Just by walking down the street Chrissy Teigen shows why supermodels are supermodels.

• As you might expect, Bruce Springsteen's eulogy for Clarence Clemons was pretty amazing.

• If forced to guess which female cast member on The Office was formerly an NFL cheerleader every single person would be wrong.

Dave Chappelle took all the time he used to spend being funny and used it to work out.

Jim Riggleman sure knows how to celebrate being fired. And now he's my colleague. Sort of.

• Don't let the Sports Illustrated poll fool you: LeBron James stinks at baseball.

• Being traded to Cleveland probably isn't much fun post-James, but it's tough to feel too sorry for Omri Casspi these days.

• Weird question (that reveals too much about me) of the week: Do you ever lie while getting a haircut?

• I recently finished re-watching all five seasons of The Wire and even the second time around it was so amazing that I started to get angry with just a handful of episodes remaining. I also came to the realization that my fashion sense is the exact same as Dukie's. I'm not sure what the best way is to convince anyone who hasn't yet watched The Wire to take the plunge, but here's a video of every epigraph from my favorite television drama of all time:

As the great Lester Freamon put it: "All the pieces matter." What a f***ing show.

• In the latest installment of "other media members reacting to  Sid Hartman doing things" an amused Dana Wessel is joined by a delighted Phil Mackey.

• For several reasons Tanguay Ngombo will go down as the most David Kahn draft pick in the history of David Kahn draft picks.

• I e-mailed this link to my mom, who remains the world's biggest Kevin Garnett fan, and she replied: "She might just be a friend and he just forgot his ring on his nightstand."

• Much like the person in this story, whenever a nude, redheaded actress drunkenly knocks on my hotel room door in the wee hours of the morning my immediate reaction is to call security.

Lindsay Lohan is doing great, as usual.

David Eckstein isn't even playing, yet he still leads the league in "grit and desire."

• As a big Party Down fan, my hopes are officially up.

• OK, now this whole government shutdown thing is getting serious.

• After watching his various appearance this week I'm in favor of making Louis CK all-time talk show guest, like all-time quarterback. Here's part one of his Jimmy Kimmel Live interview:

His segment on The Daily Show was hilarious too and if you don't laugh at those two videos we probably can't be friends. Also, watch his show on FX.

• This week's reminder that I went to journalism school.

Cheick Kongo's crazy knockout of Pat Barry at last weekend's UFC event is the equivalent of a baseball team scoring 10 runs with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to win 10-9.

• Locally trained MMA fighter Brett Rogers couldn't beat Josh Barnett at the Strikeforce event two weekends ago, so instead he beat up his wife.

• On his podcast Joe Rogan repeatedly warned that he likely couldn't pass up the ridiculous money they were offering, so he's back as the host of Fear Factor.

• Before last week my only experience with Brazilian food was gorging myself at a steakhouse, but I'm officially a fan of the cuisine after eating at Samba in Hopkins.

• Recommended podcast of the week: Rob Delaney (the stand-up comic, not the former Twins pitching prospect) was a great guest on "Jordan, Jesse, Go!"

• Last weekend I was at a local baseball tournament where they raffled off a game-used Luis Rivas bat, which longtime AG.com readers will hopefully find as funny as I did. At one point the announcer told the crowd: "There haven't been many sold, so pretty good chance you'd win."

• Another old friend, J.C. Romero, has found a new home with the Nationals ... at Triple-A.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Tom Waits growling his original The Wire theme, "Way Down In The Hole":

June 24, 2011

Link-O-Rama

This week's Link-O-Rama is sponsored by the Minnesota salsa company Curt's Salsa, whose stuff I've enjoyed on several occasions and personally recommend ...

UPDATE: I'll have more later/Monday, but for now ... Justin Morneau is having neck surgery.

• Needless to say I've been doing it for comedic purposes too. Just not intentionally.

• My mom's favorite news of the week/month/year/decade/century.

Mary-Louise Parker in a uniform, playing baseball. That's all.

• The local media has been rough on Kevin Slowey, but at least he doesn't play in Atlanta.

• I've become a Bruce Springsteen fan relatively recently, but even before learning to really appreciate all the great music Clarence Clemons made I was always a fan of The Big Man for his heroic attempts to woo Robin Quivers. She missed out on the chance to be the sixth wife at his funeral.

Ryan Dunn also passed away this week, which made me really sad because I'd just watched (and enjoyed) the third Jackass movie and then made me really mad when I read the details of his death. Epic beard, funny guy, unfortunate end.

• Supermodel mom shows up to her kid's school looking like a supermodel, causing a blogger's head to explode.

• For the journalism school graduates out there: 1500-ESPN is looking to hire a beat reporter to cover Gophers sports for their website, which is a great opportunity.

• Last week I wondered why Idris Elba "isn't in everything, ever." This week he replaced Tom Cruise in a Guillermo del Toro-directed movie. Never doubt the power of Link-O-Rama.

• In the span of one year Harris Wittels has gone from leaving Link-O-Rama comments here to writing articles for Grantland. #humblebrag

• This ranks as Megan Fox's worst decision since getting all those tattoos.

• Speaking of bad decisions: Jamey Toney versus Ken Shamrock.

Sebastian Pruiti from NBA Playbook wrote an incredibly detailed Ricky Rubio scouting report that includes charts, video, and hardcore numbers. Must-read stuff, although I'm still skeptical and the incredible amount of hype is setting him up to disappoint early on.

• By far the highlight of Rubio's introductory press conference was Dana Wessel of 1500-ESPN reacting to Sid Hartman asking a question:

Someone really needs to start a blog devoted exclusively to pictures of other media members reacting to Hartman doing things. If nothing else I'd link to it every week.

• Does anyone know if David Kahn truly made Kurt Rambis write a report before firing him? If so, Rambis ought to add one final chapter and post that sucker online. Kahn isn't much of a general manager, but it takes some special talent to make people feel sorry for a coach who went 32-132. He made the right call picking Derrick Williams, at least.

Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press displays the "Kahn is talking again" face.

Dwane Casey, who never should have been let go by the Timberwolves in the first place, is now the Raptors' new coach. Casey was 20-20 when the Timberwolves fired him--in the middle of a season, no less--and they've gone 90-280 since then.

Joe Morgan is getting his own radio show just in time to comment on the Moneyball movie.

Rashida Jones is making a strong push for Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com contender status.

• My latest podcast discovery is "Walking The Room" with Dave Anthony and Greg Behrendt, which is as funny as two guys sitting in a room talking to each other while eating Tim Tams can possibly be and has quickly become a must-listen for me.

Good news for Mad Men fans, but that seems like an awful lot of money for the 1960s.

• In my mind, this whole mess started with Jim Riggleman asking Mike Rizzo: "Where do you see this relationship going?"

UPDATE: It looks like Riggleman rebounded well enough.

• It seems sort of crazy to me that there are rankings for the best 15-year-old baseball teams in Minnesota, but my uncle is excited because he's coached Hopkins to No. 6 on the same list that has the Scott Leuis-coached Plymouth/Wayzata team at No. 4 and the Anthony LaPanta-coached Totino Grace team at No. 10. If they crack the top five maybe I'll calculate everyone's Wins Above Replacement.

• I ate here twice this week with a total of 15 people and without exception they liked it.

• As someone who recently became slightly less fat, I enjoyed the "Put This On" episode about finding clothes that fit better.

• I'd quit my diet just to eat this ice cream.

• Will manager Ned Yost's friendship with Jeff Foxworthy offset the Royals' young talent?

• I talked Michael Cuddyer, pennant races, and All-Star picks with not one, but two Seidmans.

• I'm addicted to WhatIfSports.com's great Hardball Dynasty game and my league has a pair of franchises open with the new season set to begin next week. Hardball Dynasty is not fantasy baseball and in fact has nothing to do with fantasy baseball. It's much better. From rookie-ball to the majors it's an incredibly detailed simulation of running a fictional MLB organization, with fictional players and everything from the Rule 5 draft to international signings.

Due to the steep learning curve involved in the game and extensive time commitment required to master it we're looking first and foremost for owners with some previous Hardball Dynasty experience. Mostly, though, we're just looking for good owners and despite the sales pitch-like tone of this note I get absolutely nothing in return for someone signing up (except for a better league to enjoy, of course). If you're interested, let me know.

• Finally, in honor of Dunn this week's AG.com-approved music video is the theme song to the Jackass movies, "If You're Gonna Be Dumb" by Roger Alan Wade: