September 20, 2013

Link-O-Rama

Nick Punto had his most Nick Punto moment ever, sliding head-first into first base on a single to the outfield. Randball's Stu may have to update his oral history of Punto's head-first slides.

Baseball America's article naming Byron Buxton as their minor league player of the year is essentially porn for Twins fans.

• "Breaking Bad" fans will enjoy this Yelp page.

• As an embarrassed, longtime BlackBerry user I can safely say most of these reasons are bullshit.

• My blog-mate Craig Calcaterra showed why I almost never call into radio shows when invited.

• There's a ton of dead weight on the Twins' roster, so who will they get rid of this offseason?

• Thanks to everyone who attended the "Grand Drunk Railroad" event Saturday. It was a major success, as more than 100 people joined the light rail pub crawl in the afternoon and the group continued to have fun at night despite the Twins-Rays game being delayed by rain, thanks in no small part to Glen Perkins buying us a round of beers from the bullpen. It went so well that we'll definitely do something similar again and we're already brainstorming other get-together ideas.

• We recorded this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode at various stops along the pub crawl, so it features multiple special guests and everyone getting progressively drunker/weirder as the show goes on. I already posted a bunch of videos and photos from the event on the episode page, but here are a couple more pictures of the podcasting in progress:

pub crawl podcast

We're recording a new "Gleeman and The Geek" show this weekend at New Bohemia's inaugural beer fest, where a taster pass gets all-you-can-drink beer from 10 different breweries.

• More people will probably click on this link than watched the Astros on CSN Houston.

Chiara Atik of How About We explains why I'll never stop tweeting at Jon Taffer.

• One of my rules is that whenever Lizzy Caplan appears on a talk show I'll link to it.

• During my weekly half-hour chat with Paul Allen he grilled me about a first date, I complained about getting a ticket driving to the studio, and we brainstormed questions for Terry Ryan.

Todd Helton is one of the most productive home hitters in baseball history, but Coors Field is all over the list.

• After six years as Minneapolis Star Tribune editor Nancy Barnes left for the Houston Chronicle.

Conan O'Brien playing "Grand Theft Auto" made me also want to play the game without a clue.

• I have no idea how to handle this emotionally.

• One second on the internet is plenty of time for anything.

• In real life Jonathan Banks is very different than the Mike Ehrmantraut character he played on "Breaking Bad." But he's no less fun to watch.

• After watching last week's "Breaking Bad" episode I wondered on Twitter what happens if no one ever tells Huell he can leave that room now and it turns out someone did the research:

I watched that for ... well, longer than I'm comfortable admitting.

• This conversation started at 1:30 a.m.

• Uh oh. It turns out NBC has had a hidden camera in my office this entire time.

• One of my favorite stand-up comedians, Gary Gulman, is performing all this weekend at the comedy club in the Mall of America.

• Netflix recommendation: "Starlet" is a well-done, small-scale story that avoids the usual movie cliches and features two really strong lead performances by unknown actresses.

Alison Agosti is always one of my favorite podcast guests and she was great on "Hey, Teens!" with Eric Gosselin and Jon Wiener.

• "Parks and Recreation" writer (and former AG.com commenter) Harris Wittels had a funny, interesting chat with Marc Maron.

• Two of my favorite podcasts joined forces when Graham Clark from "Stop Podcasting Yourself" was on a live show with Jesse Thorn and Jordan Morris from "Jordan, Jesse, Go!"

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

- "Byron Buxton's mom"
- "Grand Drunk Railroad"
- "How did Meatsauce from KFAN lose weight?"
- "Nick Punto head-first slide"
- "Ben Grieve net worth"
- "Jim Souhan is the worst"
- "Gillian Jacobs introvert"
- "Connie and Aaron play me"
- "Tevin Campbell radio interviews in 1999"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Humpty Dance" by Digital Underground:


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August 23, 2013

Link-O-Rama

• Thursday morning I was a guest on Paul Allen's show live from the KFAN booth at the State Fair. I had zero idea what they had planned, but much like last year it turned into an excuse to find me a date on the radio and in front of fair-goers sitting on bleachers watching us. Things got awkward and (hopefully) funny enough that I stayed on for three segments. You can listen to the first part here and the second part here. And then let's agree to never speak of this again.

• Ain't no party like a Corey Feldman party because a Corey Feldman party ... looks really sad.

Joe Mauer is the latest on a long list of catchers suffering concussions at an alarming rate.

• Alcoholism-enabling news of the week: "Australian researches have found a way to improve the hydrating qualities of beer without compromising on taste and ... may even have found a way to avoid a post-drink hangover."

• My favorite moment from this week's "Breaking Bad" episode was an easy choice. And the guy on the left, Bill Burr, is a great stand-up comedian who also hosts a very good podcast.

• Not only is "Community" creator Dan Harmon returning to the show next season, Jonathan Banks is joining the cast after brilliantly playing Mike Ehrmantraut on "Breaking Bad."

• On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we tried to figure out how the Twins' rotation can avoid being terrible again next season and examined the two major types of Twins fandom.

St. Paul Pioneer Press photographer Ben Garvin made a stop-motion video of his magic beard:

Us beardos have to stick together.

Delmon Young has been reunited with the Rays six years after they traded him to the Twins.

• Every six months or so Peter Gammons takes a seemingly random shot at me on Twitter for some reason. I try not to get worked up about it, because he's one of the best baseball writers of all time, he's been nice to me personally, and he turned me on to Susan Tedeschi years ago.

Will Leitch, formerly of Deadspin and currently of Sports On Earth and New York magazine, invited me on his podcast to chat about old-school blogging, staying away from steroids, and why Gammons likes to jab at me. I've been online acquaintances with Leitch for a decade or so and we were even featured together in a Sports Illustrated article alongside Bill Simmons, but I'm not sure I'd ever actually spoken to him before. It was fun and I think you'll enjoy listening.

• I can only assume that my working from home as an internet baseball writer played a big part in Google naming Minnetonka this year's "eCity of Minnesota." Whatever that means.

• Exactly how discouraging was Kyle Gibson's first taste of the big leagues?

• Grantland followed Hannibal Buress around with a camera as he worked on jokes.

• As a longtime John Mayer fan a lot of this stuff makes sense to me, but it's probably not a winnable battle at this point. His new album is good, though.

• If only for nostalgia I wouldn't mind the Twins signing Johan Santana to a cheap deal.

Morgan Murphy is hilarious on Twitter and pretty damn funny on stage too. Woo!

• MLB formed a seven-person committee of SABR members to incorporate as 25 percent of their Gold Glove award selection process. And my favorite part is that the man wearing these socks is one of the seven chosen. You probably didn't realize I was hanging out with defensive experts.

• Angels manager Mike Scioscia claims the A's never taught Grant Green how to bunt, but his story doesn't quite check out.

• My fellow Howard Stern fans will enjoy this: Within the span of around 72 hours this week "Baba Booey" was mentioned during a Padres broadcast and on "The Newsroom":

That made me feel slightly better about still watching "The Newsroom."

• I had an in-depth discussion with Glen Perkins about what it takes to be a closer.

• Honestly, sometimes I wish my fans would dial back the praise just a little bit.

Clayton Kershaw is a bad, bad man.

• I finished re-watching "The Sopranos" via HBO GO, devouring all 86 episodes in 84 days. I'd like to write something substantial about the experience at some point, but the short version is that I loved the show even more the second time around and certainly appreciated many of the themes more as a 30-year-old than as a 20-year-old. Here's a collection of my tweets about re-watching the show, in reverse order.

• Any movie co-starring Adam Scott and Robin Tunney can't help but be good and "See Girl Run" is definitely worth checking out on Netflix. Scott did steal my tuxedo t-shirt look, though.

• I was home from the State Fair by 11:30 a.m. on opening day and left without eating anything. And that might be my only State Fair appearance of the year, although I'm reconsidering because Julie Klausner is hosting the Walker Arts Center's "internet cat video festival" there Wednesday. I'm not sure what that is, exactly, but I do know she's great.

• I'm tempted to go check out "Wits" at the Fitzgerald Theater because they have a bunch of good comedians scheduled as guests and must-follow tweeter Alison Agosti writes for the show.

Tom Segura might be my pick for the most underrated stand-up comedian and he also co-hosts a good podcast, so not surprisingly he was a great guest on Marc Maron's show.

• This week I re-upped my yearly subscription to Baseball-Reference.com's Play Index, which is the most indispensable research tool in sports and probably my favorite thing ever.

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

- "Inga Hammond and Scott Erickson"
- "Girls Gone Gleeman"
- "Lindsay Lohan baseball"
- "Lean Cuisine keeps me in shape"
- "Paulie Gualtieri tattoo"
- "What size shirt should a 265-pound man wear?"
- "St. Paul chubby chasers"
- "Something so ugly that it's beautiful"
- "David Fincher babyface"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Cover Me Up" by Jason Isbell:


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

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:


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

August 9, 2013

Link-O-Rama

• Reservations for the September 14 light rail pub crawl/Twins game are about to close, so this the last chance to sign up for a day of bar-hopping and baseball-watching with me, John Bonnes, Parker Hageman, Nick Nelson, and various other internetters of note. We're going to have a great time before, during, and after the Saturday night Twins-Rays game at Target Field, so go get signed up and don't spend the rest of your life full of regret.

• Deadspin has been taking votes on the best and worst baseball beat writers in each division and now that they've gotten to the AL Central surely AG.com readers have some thoughts.

• Now we know why Smalls wasn't involved in "The Sandlot" reunion at Target Field earlier this season: He's too busy head-butting police officers.

• I'm mostly not a big fan of Vine videos, but sometimes they're impossible not to love.

• "Gang Bang Organizer" is a Hall of Fame business card title. And who knew this type of thing was going on in Bloomington of all places?

Michael Beasley takes a pretty good mugshot, although I suppose that comes with practice.

This week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode provides an example of what I sound like on no sleep, hungover, and with a serious case of whiskey throat.

• My annual recap of the SABR convention includes the usual photos of nerds and stories of adults acting like idiots that you've come to expect, plus some Philadelphia stuff too. For instance:

socks and me tweeting2

Looking through the pictures hammers home how amazing it is that women are attracted to men.

• Needless to say that this was not an issue at the SABR convention.

• While at the SABR convention I sipped a beer in the hotel bar and recorded a podcast with one of my favorite people, Carson Cistulli of Fan Graphs Audio. I really enjoyed our conversation and I think anyone who likes me even a little bit will enjoy it too.

• One day after chatting with me Cistulli interviewed Diamondbacks beat reporter Nick Piecoro from the Arizona Republic and asked him: "You gonna kill Aaron Gleeman and take his place? You gonna wear his body like skin?"

• Nothing like a 5,000-word answer to the question "what drives writers to drink?"

Andrew Wagaman of the Minneapolis Star Tribune has everything you ever wanted to know about the "Kiss Cam" at Target Field.

• I'm assuming that women will be impressed and not at all weirded out if I cover every wall in my house with these, right?

Chipper Jones quit Twitter because of "too much hate and too many trolls."

• Stand-up comedian Christina Walkinshaw has been writing very funny recaps of dates with people she met on Tinder.

• When it comes to the Twins sometimes it's tough to tell parody from reality.

• Why didn't the Twins move anyone at the trade deadline? I'm glad you asked.

• I'm guessing that Terry Ryan doesn't quote Jay Z very often.

• Start from the bottom of this true masterpiece of modern storytelling.

Jamey Carroll throwing a scoreless inning Monday against the Royals is one of my favorite moments of the Twins' season:

jamey carroll pitching

I'm a sucker for brunettes wearing glasses and position players on the mound.

• My weekly half-hour chat with Paul Allen on KFAN ended with an interesting hypothetical trade scenario about Miguel Sano and I'm still not sure how I'd answer it.

• I've never watched "The X-Files," but it's easy to see why people love Gillian Anderson. She's incredibly good as the star of the British miniseries "The Fall" that's available on Netflix.

Amy Poehler's interview with Jeff Garlin showed again why she's the best. My favorite part is Garlin telling the story of meeting her for the first time: "I couldn't believe you existed. I was like, what the f*** is that? How the f*** does that happen?"

Erica Sigurdson is a reliably great guest on the reliably great "Stop Podcasting Yourself" with Dave Shumka and Graham Clark. Consistently my favorite podcast for two years now.

• Re-watching "The Sopranos" update: Miles Straume from "Lost" helps Junior Soprano run the poker game in the rehab center.

• Very happy to see longtime AG.com reader and Minnesota Daily alum Derek Wetmore hired as 1500-ESPN's new web editor. He's a great choice to fill Tom Pelissero's big shoes.

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

- "Oscar De La Hoya hair transplant"
- "Jon Taffer grow hair"
- "Mila Kunis in Minnesota"
- "Who is Clarence Swamptown?"
- "Nude pictures of Denard Robinson"
- "What are weapons grade soup bones?"
- "Does anyone love Delmon Young?"
- "Orioles players with braces in their teeth"
- "What did Fat Joe do to lose 100 pounds?"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "Motown Philly" by Boyz II Men:


This week's blog content is sponsored by the Twins Daily light rail pub crawl/Twins game, where you can join Aaron Gleeman, John Bonnes, Parker Hageman, Nick Nelson, and Seth Stohs for a day of bar-hopping and baseball on September 14. Space is limited, so book your spot.

July 26, 2013

Link-O-Rama

Glen Perkins was definitely right: Converting a save with his fly down did guarantee him a spot in Link-O-Rama.

• I've spent most of the past couple years counting calories, so this photographic look at what 200 calories worth of various food looks like was fascinating.

• If you're going to have "fields of marijuana plants" worth $4 million Hinckley is as good a place as any, just because of the proximity to the donuts at Tobies.

• Friend of AG.com Alex Belth combined Greg Maddux and Al Green, which you know I loved.

• Speaking of which, I just realized that YouTube has my favorite album of all time available in full. You should listen to it, many times.

• Reading about how various people at the New York Times didn't appreciate or even respect Nate Silver hit a lot of familiar notes about old-school media.

• I've been wearing "dad jeans" for years, so it's good to see fashion trends are catching up.

• If this works I'm requesting that Otis Redding play at my birthday party next year.

• On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we talked about Scott Diamond's demise and the notion of clutch, and then I revealed my plans to kill middle infielders via time travel.

• Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate Aubrey Plaza does a remarkable job making me want to see her new movie:

She also gave some amusing answers in a GQ magazine interview.

Parker Hageman of Twins Daily talked to Twins stat-head Jack Goin about what exactly goes into the trade deadline.

• Do the Twins even have any players other teams will want at the trade deadline?

• When it comes to Derek Jeter it's hard to tell the difference between news and fan fiction.

• Apparently a "specialty whiskey and craft beer store" is coming to my neck of the woods, which might suggest I've gotten a second job as a city planner.

Justin Morneau's out-avoiding slide Tuesday night must be seen to believe.

Samuel Deduno chewing on his necklace mid-pitch also go the GIF treatment.

• While at KFAN for my weekly half-hour appearance on Paul Allen's show I saw psychic/nutcase Gary Spivey roaming the hallways, but didn't have the guts to snap a photo of his ridiculous hair.

• On a related note, PA's preseason plan to bet $100 on the Twins in all 162 games has shown a $74 profit through 99 games. I have a spreadsheet tracking it and everything.

Chris Colabello might be pretty good if the Twins give him a chance.

• As someone who doesn't care about steroids, this was an amusing collection.

• Terminally ill "The Simpsons" co-creator Sam Simon is giving away his vast fortune to charity.

Geraldo Rivera made weird headlines this week, but one key thing to remember is that he got beat up by Frank Stallone on Howard Stern's show back in 1992:

Rivera was only 49 years old back then, so he wasn't yet the old 50 or the new 50.

• I'm going to ask for this look at Great Clips next time.

Never forget: "Kevin Correia pitching like an ace right in front of our eyes."

• Re-watching "The Sopranos" update: I looked up Johnny Cakes on Wikipedia and learned that the actor killed himself in 2008. Lots of sad, premature deaths among the show's great cast.

Jon Dore has become one of my favorite guests on the podcast circuit and he was lots of fun on "The Crabfeast" with Ryan Sickler and Jay Larson.

Bill Simmons did a nice job interviewing Anthony Jeselnik, who's gotten famous enough that his biggest claim to fame is no longer being Gregg Rosenthal's college roommate.

• Friend of AG.com Axel Kohagen makes the case for "End of Watch" as a horror movie. Sort of.

• I'm going to the Society for American Baseball Research convention in Philadelphia next week, so if any AG.com readers are going to be there let me know.

• Unlike the Twins last night I remembered having a really good time at Safeco Field when I was there in 2006, so I looked up this excerpt from my SABR convention recap.

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

- "What happened to Drew Butera?"
- "Twins blogger Aaron"
- "Stepped on the scale get even fatter"
- "Notes to twin babies"
- "Justin Morneau shirtless"
- "Famous Jewish women celebrities"
- "Ryan Braun penis"
- "Matt Capps net worth"
- "How much do the Fox Sports North Girls make?"
- "Jon Taffer hair"

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "If I Loved You" by Delta Rae:


This week's blog content is sponsored by the Twins Daily light rail pub crawl/Twins game, where you can join Aaron Gleeman, John Bonnes, Parker Hageman, Nick Nelson, and Seth Stohs for a day of bar-hopping and baseball on September 14. Space is limited, so book your spot.

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