August 16, 2013

Link-O-Rama

Wanna see Jared Burton punch Brian Duensing?

LaTroy Hawkins, who's getting another chance to close again at age 40, got hit in the bollocks. And yet he still won't wear a cup.

• "Doctor offers free plastic surgery in exchange for dream dates" is a story that has me curious about the blogger equivalent.

• And speaking of the blogger equivalent, "burglar left bruised and bleeding by retired 72-year-old boxer" is a pretty great headline.

• How good has Oswaldo Arcia been as a rookie and how good can he become long term?

• While searching for a photo to use for that Arcia post I stumbled across this beauty featuring Arcia, Brian Dozier, Trevor Plouffe, and FSN sideline reporter Jamie Hersch.

Francisco Liriano is so busy throwing complete games for the Pirates that he has neither the time nor the energy to bother with hitting.

• And because he can't be any worse than Liriano in that last video, Parker Hageman of Twins Daily might take an at-bat against Glen Perkins. I want to be there to podcast the magic.

• Happy birthday to Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com Mila Kunis, who turned 30 years old. It's all downhill from here, trust me.

• On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we again learn that John Bonnes isn't needed.

• Oh nothing, just Nick Punto hitting a homer and then doing a postgame interview with a Punto jersey-wearing Danny DeVito on the field at Dodger Stadium:

Punto does kind of have a Charlie Day vibe.

• It turns out not all Bar Mitzvah parties are created equal. Way back in 1996 my party featured basketball and swimming rather than a full-scale burlesque show. We did have pizza, though.

• I'm thinking of applying to the Twins' "social media suite" for the free food. And also because the application asks for a count of Twitter followers, Facebook friends, and ... LinkedIn connections.

• During my weekly half-hour chat with Paul Allen he welcomed Cory Cove into the KFAN studio to tag-team mock me for winning a bunch of money playing poker at Canterbury Park. And then I threw Nick Nelson under the bus to save myself.

Jeff Sullivan of Fan Graphs wrote a very good article about the Twins pitching staff's historic inability to generate strikeouts.

Carson Cistulli of Fan Graphs chatted with one of my favorite baseball beat reporters, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch.

• And speaking of MLB beat reporters, Deadspin's efforts to identify the best and worst covering each team was kind of disappointing in that they left the worst spots blank a lot.

• Congrats to former "Gleeman and The Geek" guest Ben Goessling, who left the St. Paul Pioneer Press to become ESPN's new Vikings beat reporter. Newspapers continue to hemorrhage talent.

• Wanna be the Minneapolis Star Tribune's new Vikings beat reporter?

• According to a University of Georgia study 28 percent of journalism school graduates wish they'd chosen a different field, which actually doesn't sound all that high to this non-graduate.

Jonathan Abrams' article about Jonny Flynn for Grantland is a must-read for Timberwolves fans, David Kahn haters, and people who simply enjoy shaking their head in disbelief.

• St. Paul Central graduate, Ricky Rubio fan club president, stand-up comedian, and "Parks and Recreation" writer Joe Mande is finally doing something with his life.

• I'm almost finished re-watching "The Sopranos" and by far my favorite part has been getting to re-hear Paulie Walnuts pronounce "Baja Fresh" again:

I laughed as hard at that two days ago as I did 10 years ago and can't explain why in either case.

Rickey Henderson's high school yearbook picture from 1976 is spectacular.

• For my fellow insomniacs, Allie Shah wrote about the struggle to sleep for the Minneapolis Star Tribune, including how "young people, in particular, might be setting themselves up for future problems because of their round-the-clock devotion to mobile devices and social media."

• I really hope everyone listened to me and signed up for the light rail pub crawl/Twins game on September 14, because just look at this shirt.

• Mazel tov to the Phillies for releasing Delmon Young, who refused an assignment to Triple-A.

Manny Ramirez is probably done after being released from Triple-A by the Rangers, but don't forget what a monster he was for 15 years.

"Blue Valentine" is one of my 10 favorite movies, so I was incredibly excited for Ryan Gosling and director Derek Cianfrance's second collaboration, but "The Place Beyond The Pines" was underwhelming. Not bad, certainly, but also nothing special overall. Another fairly new release that I rented this week, "Mud" starring Matthew McConaughey, was much better.

• As someone who obsessively watches "Chopped" on Food Network and obsessively listens to podcasts, chef Alex Guarnaschelli's interview with Marc Maron was amazing. She quoted "Bull Durham" and talked about listening to Notorious B.I.G. and is basically a perfect human.

• "Doodie Calls" with Doug Mand and Jack Dolgen is always funny/weird, but Annie Lederman was a particularly great guest.

Alex Rodriguez, as explained by detective Frank Pembleton.

• If you're into supporting worthwhile projects via Kickstarter check out Hunter Weeks' "feature-length film about the oldest people in the world and their lessons for living life right."

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Jim Thome naked"
- "Jim Thome shirtless"
- "Lean Cuisine chicken enchilada suiza makes me sweat"
- "Brendan Harris attitude"
- "Otis Redding baseball cards"
- "Tevin Campbell radio interview"
- "Mae Whitman pornstar lookalike"
- "Who is Dana Wessel?"
- "Bar graph showing pork chops and mutton chops"

• Finally, because I've listened to it about 100 times in two weeks despite not being sure if I love it or hate it this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Reckoning Song" by Asaf Avidan:


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May 31, 2013

Link-O-Rama

• For most of my life I dreamed of being a columnist for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. I gave up on that ever happening a while back, but this might be the next-best thing: Star Tribune metro reporter Ben Johnson wrote a lengthy article about me and my weird career path and AG.com reaching 10 million visitors. I haven't seen a copy of the physical newspaper yet, but the article got top billing in the "West Metro" section of the website:

Star Tribune story

Thanks to Johnson for being such a pleasure to deal with and to various people for saying nice things about me. My mom and grandma are very happy. Give it a read.

• I'm mostly just happy that the photographer didn't ask me to pose like this.

Matt Harvey never even gave me a chance.

Glen Perkins' highly effective "make every Twins fan fall in love with him" tour continues with an amusing collection of quotes in the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

• I've been using Twitter wrong this whole time. Also, who won Miss Minnesota this year?

• Rays prospect Joshua Sale provides more evidence of the strong correlation linking being an asshole and not knowing the difference between "your" and "you're."

• I have a few openings in my "Hardball Dynasty" league on WhatIfSports and the new season begins next week. If you're interested in joining, please read this first.

• As someone who really got hooked on poker from watching ESPN's coverage of the World Series of Poker in 2003, Grantland's oral history of Chris Moneymaker and company was a great read.

• If you're curious about who the Twins will select with the No. 4 overall pick in next week's draft, I profiled all the potential targets from Mark Appel to Reese McGuire.

• And on this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we went even more in depth talking with special guest Jeremy Nygaard about the upcoming draft and also tried to figure out the Twins' reasoning behind all the recent roster moves.

• Who wore it better? Zubaz edition, starring me and another St. Paul boy born in 1983:

mauer and gleeman zubaz

My limo was bigger than Joe Mauer's trophy, if nothing else.

Nick Swarsdon on "Norm MacDonald Live" has to be one of the five funniest interviews ever by someone wearing a Timberwolves hat.

• It took a while, but Carlos Gomez has become one of the best players in baseball at age 27.

• My weekly appearance on Paul Allen's show was derailed by talk of what exactly goes on in my bedroom and then things went downhill from there.

• Speaking of PA, he randomly sat behind Parker Hageman at Wednesday night's Twins-Brewers game and they both got on television reacting to Chris Parmelee's great catch. Of course, if you look at the video from another angle Hageman tried to pull a Steve Bartman and failed.

• Once upon a time reading "some college, no degree is not going to cut it" would've scared me.

Curtis Granderson is donating $5 million to his alma mater, which is about 10 percent of his lifetime earnings. In related news, every six months someone from the University of Minnesota calls me looking for money, I offer to donate in exchange for a diploma, and they hang up.

• I like that my HardballTalk blogmate Craig Calcaterra is now a leading source for pictures of dudes in their underwear.

• This week's Carson Cistulli-Dayn Perry chat/business meeting included Cistulli revealing that he's "both a talented and enthusiastic dancer" with "legitimate moves" and Perry explaining that he "would out-dead lift the shit out of Rob Neyer."

Yu Darvish has nearly as many strikeouts as the Twins' entire starting rotation.

• I'm sure there's an official video for "Get Lucky" by Daft Punk, but I'll choose to believe this is it:

That's co-produced by Minnesota native, stand-up comedian, and Twitter rascal Joe Mande.

• MinnPost is a non-profit organization and as part of their fundraising efforts you can hang out with me (and John Bonnes) in a Target Field suite and watch the Twins-Tigers game on June 15.

Chris Colabello wore the wrong uniform Tuesday night and no one noticed until after the game.

• SABR posted details of all the research presentations scheduled for this year's convention, which is July 31 to August 4 in Philadelphia. I've gone to every convention since 2004.

• Why did the Twins send down Oswaldo Arcia and when are they going to call up Kyle Gibson?

• Comedian/writer Morgan Murphy was a really enjoyable guest on Jay Mohr's podcast because she talked about my three favorite things: Sports, comedy, and depression.

• "Sound City" is one of the best music documentaries I've ever seen and it's available on Amazon for just 99 cents this week. Do yourself a favor and watch it.

• If you're interested in becoming an AG.com sponsor, next week's spot hasn't been reserved yet and you can read all the details here.

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Is Kevin Slowey for real?"
- "Elisabeth Moss feet obsession"
- "Robby Incmikoski is how old?"
- "Caleb Thielbar's mom"
- "Jon Bones KFAN"
- "Ryan Doumit shirtless"
- "Was Gary Gaetti any good for the Twins?"
- "Craig Calcaterra fan fiction"
- "Who are the FSN Girls dating?"
- "Meatsauce work KFAN pizza"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Dreams" by The Game:


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April 5, 2013

Link-O-Rama

Roger Ebert, who's the greatest film critic of all time and still had his fastball at age 70, passed away yesterday after a harrowing battle with cancer. Even as cancer ravaged his body his mind remained incredibly sharp and he never ceased being the first review I read for every movie. And beyond his greatness as a writer and film critic Ebert lived a fascinating life and was a hilarious regular guest on Howard Stern's radio show for many years. Truly a legend.

Parker Hageman of Twins Daily escaped from his parents' basement long enough to interview Glen Perkins about the role of sabermetrics in his career and I'm confident it's the best baseball article you'll read this week. Perfect mix of blogging, reporting, stats, and quotes.

• Speaking of Hageman, as part of his Opening Day trip to the Target Field press box he co-stars in this amazing GIF of Sid Hartman sipping hot chocolate.

• Believe it or not, the headline "Hopkins man trying to connect with woman he met at drunken driving class" is not about me. But can you audit those classes without the whole arrest part?

Brett Favre's bedroom on draft day 1991 was absolutely spectacular.

• Who should be batting second for the Twins? I'm glad you asked.

• I jokingly asked via Twitter for someone to start a Tumblr page devoted to Roy Smalley's hair and the internet being the internet it now exists.

• I'm really hoping that J.J. Barea becomes a trend-setter.

• Probably my biggest regret in life was not having my breathalyzer to test John Bonnes midway through this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode.

• My mom weighed in on the podcast.

• Someone over at "MLB 13: The Show" decided to make a video of me as a player in the game and they even included the glasses, constant five o'clock shadow, and slow bat. Screen shot:

Screen Shot 2013-04-03 at 10.24.45 PM

Honestly, those frames are hipper than I'm comfortable with and I don't have that much range.

• I've been letting my NBC bosses know that I'm available to take over Jimmy Fallon's old spot.

• As a lifelong Howard Stern fan I loved that his guests on Wednesday were Drew Magary from Deadspin and Louis C.K. from being the funniest person alive. Stern and C.K. had a tremendous hour-plus chat and afterward my main thought was: "I really hope they liked each other." Because for some reason that would make me incredibly happy.

• If you like "Parks and Recreation" you'll love this.

• Apparently there's now a third sports radio station in the Twin Cities, as Love 105 has become The Ticket, with programming that includes syndicated CBS Sports Radio shows.

• With free agency around the corner Robinson Cano fired Scott Boras as his agent and hired Jay-Z, which has me wondering what type of commission Mase charges.

Kirk Goldsberry of Grantland wrote an awesome visual, statistical, and analytical article about how LeBron James became the best player in basketball and then got even better.

• Presented without comment: For three games this year the Twins are hosting a "Wine, Women, and Baseball" event at Target Field, sponsored by Midwest Facial Plastic Surgery and Aesthetic Skincare and featuring "pamper yourself stations."

• During my weekly appearance on KFAN with Paul Allen we discussed Eduardo Escobar's Hall of Fame candidacy for a half-hour or so. Plus some other stuff, probably.

• "Mad Men" returning is exciting enough, but in promoting the upcoming season Jon Hamm was a great guest on "Comedy Bang Bang" and very amusing on "Seven Minutes in Heaven":

"I thought that would make you kiss me."

• My attempt to figure out exactly how bad the Twins will be this season.

• Hebrew school expellees aren't much help in trivia contests.

• If anyone cares, here's my roster for the 13-team Rotoworld fantasy baseball league.

• A long time ago lots of people thought Delmon Young would be really good, so that's cool.

• "Blue Valentine" is one of my favorite movies--it came out in 2010 and I've seen it at least 10 times--and you can watch it for just 99 cents this week on both Amazon.com and iTunes.

• Maybe it was just low expectations because everyone seemed to hate it at the time, but I finally saw "This is 40" and really liked it a lot, especially Albert Brooks and Maude Apatow.

• I donate to Maximum Fun every month because they provide tons of great, free content in the form of several of the best podcasts around. They rely on donations to keep afloat, so please join me in sending them some money for the annual pledge drive.

• Stand-up comic, "Parks and Recreation" writer, Twitter must-follow, and fellow "Bar Rescue" fan Joe Mande is coming to Acme Comedy Company in Minneapolis next month. We should all go.

• Interested in sponsoring a week of AG.com and advertising your product, service, local business, or website to thousands of readers per day? Click here for details.

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Jared Burton girlfriend"
- "Darin Mastroianni girlfriend"
- "Robb Quinlan girlfriend"
- "Fat Zubaz"
- "What happened to Scott Erickson?"
- "Who did the Twins all trade?"
- "Twins future prospect"
- "Is Drew Butera married?"
- "Dick Bremer hates Aaron Gleeman"
- "Husband says I'm fat"
- "Alexey Shved shirtless"
- "Byron Buxton shirtless"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "You and Me" by Penny and The Quarters from the "Blue Valentine" soundtrack:


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