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 22, 2011

Link-O-Rama

• Every cop's fantasy, starring Sofia Vergara.

• Humble bragging is sweeping the nation and the Wall Street Journal talked to the man behind the phenomenon, Harris Wittels, who once upon a time left a comment here. #humblebrag

• I'm not sure what took them so damn long, but better late than never: NFL Network will be replacing Matt Millen and Joe Theisman with Mike Mayock for their Thursday night games.

• Quote of the week: Royals manager Ned Yost on Billy Butler wanting to play first base: "I'd like to be an astronaut."

• This was the same excuse I used for skipping class in college, with the only difference being that no one on the entire campus knew who I was.

Elisha Cuthbert is back on television. I'm unlikely to watch the former Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com's new show, but I am fully committed to looking at any screen caps posted online.

• Friend of AG.com Phil Mackey has been named "best sports talk radio host" in Minnesota by City Pages, which is remarkable considering he didn't have a full-time on-air spot until leaving 1130-KFAN for 1500-ESPN about 18 months ago and might be even better covering the Twins as a beat reporter than he is as the co-host of an afternoon show. Not bad for a stat-head.

• Stat-head setup man? Red Sox reliever Daniel Bard reads Fan Graphs.

• As a white, point guard-playing kid I owned his Sacramento Kings jersey and proudly wore it while attempting ill-advised but fancy passes, so this news makes me feel both sad and old.

David Carr of the New York Times wrote an interesting profile of Michael Klingensmith, who has helped turn the Minneapolis Star Tribune around since taking over as publisher in mid-2008. He's a native Minnesotan and "a serious Twins fan" who utilizes "statistical data to help guide product improvements." And under his watch the newspaper is one of the few in the country on an upswing. Meanwhile, the St. Paul Pioneer Press' website sadly remains nearly unusable.

• As someone who greatly prefers using Tweetdeck to the actual Twitter interface I'm worried about what may happen now that Twitter is in talks to buy Tweetdeck for "around $50 million."

• Marlins left fielder Logan Morrison has become one of my favorite players thanks to his great tweeting.

• Not that you can tell a ton from a 92-second clip, but HBO's upcoming new series Lucky looks pretty good and it's definitely star-studded.

Bonus points for using the World Series of Poker intro jingle.

• Thanks to a government crackdown the online poker world has basically been ruined, leaving tons of people out of work, taking away recreational enjoyment from part-timers like me, and even impacting television programming on numerous channels.

• Now that online poker is banned I feel the same about playing poker as I do about hosting a podcast. I'd really like to do both, but ultimately it takes a backseat to my even stronger desire not to leave the house or invite relative strangers over to my house. Helluva catch-22.

Buster Posey's sister can out-hit your sister.

• My mom's all-time favorite athlete is much better at pistol-whipping than he was at dieting.

• After six weeks of dieting I'm down 40 pounds, which sounds misleadingly great because of how much weight fatsos like me have to shed in the first place. I'm still fat enough that telling someone how much weight I've lost only leads to them thinking: "And you still look this bad?!" I've been counting every calorie and working out an elliptical machine every day, but once my calorie intake loosens up a bit this alcohol-to-calorie chart will be very helpful.

• Up until six weeks ago I was one of the leading donut consumers in the country, yet I had no idea that many (and perhaps even most) people spell it "doughnut." I also had no idea that a "free year's supply of donuts" could cost you $237.

Bill Simmons continues to build an excellent writing staff for his upcoming ESPN-funded site, hiring Bill Barnwell away from Football Outsiders.

Evangeline Lilly is either pregnant or there will soon be a disheveled yet still incredibly great looking blond woman with an Australian accent looking for her son again. Whatever the case, I think we can all agree that the kid's name should be Aaron.

• Following the latest veteran media member to write a really dumb thing about sports, David Matthews of The Good Men Project wonders how long before more of the higher-quality online writers land full-time gigs and how many of them will be forced to quit in search of non-writing jobs that actually pay the bills. I've been fortunate in that respect, but many good writers are not as lucky and having to live on income from AG.com would have forced me to quit long ago.

• After reading this news I'm thinking about suing myself for being paid almost no money from 10 years of blogging here. We'd probably settle out of court.

• Speaking of real life getting in the way of good blogging, Stick and Ball Guy has hung up the keyboard. I enjoyed SBG's community of bloggers and readers so much that it remains the only other blog on which I've ever regularly posted comments and I also enjoyed attending several in-person get-togethers with SBG and friends. He'll be missed, but the community has decided to go on without SBG by starting up a spinoff site that is definitely worth checking out.

• I was surprised to learn that an average of just 22,000 television sets were tuned into each Timberwolves game this season and even more shocked to find out that didn't even rank them among the NBA's least-watched teams.

• I'm not sure $105 million in added risk makes much sense for the Brewers, but Ryan Braun is now signed through 2020.

• I'm excited that Friday Night Lights is back for a final season, although the scene in the first episode where the new guy dribbles and shoots free throws like he's never played the sport before despite supposedly being a basketball star has me re-thinking my love for the first four seasons. It might even keep me from bidding on more than a dozen items in this auction.

Vanessa Hudgens either needs to get much fatter or hire a new public relations person.

• Reds pitcher Mike Leake was arrested for allegedly stealing $60 in shirts from Macy's.

• When the Timberwolves fired Dwane Casey they were 20-20. They are 90-280 since then.

• I saw these guys do a presentation at last year's SABR convention. Very interesting stuff.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is The Black Keys doing "Heavy Soul" live: