February 23, 2007
I've seen prose like that about Derek Jeter, but Abraham Nunez?!
There's something different about Abraham Nunez. His pleasant smile has evaporated. His twinkling eyes have hardened.
It's nice to know that Garnett views the situation almost exactly the same as I do, which is to say that he's not even close to the problem, whereas the people in charge of surrounding him with teammates are a disaster. Put in Garnett's shoes, I might look at the mediocre roster and inept decision-makers around me, and decide to get the hell out before it's too late. To his credit, Garnett sees things differently: "Man, I have hope. I'm not one of these people who just up and bail when things are tough."
It sounds like people want better for me. And my perspective is, why do I have to be the component that's moved? Why can't organizations change? Why can't things change in the front office to bring in different people to better it?
That's obviously not exactly earth-shattering news--even on a blog some might say is obsessed with the newspaper industry--which is why I didn't think enough of the note to re-publish it outside of the comments section. However, sure enough the aforementioned job listing showed up and now I see that Gordon Wittenmyer has indeed left the St. Paul Pioneer Press to cover the Cubs for the Chicago Sun-Times.
You might not have Jason Williams to kick around much longer. Rumor has it that Gordon Wittenmyer is going to Chicago to cover the Cubs and that Williams might be getting a new job too. St. Paul is already advertising for one of the jobs.
For now at least it looks like Jason Williams remains at the Pioneer Press, although like LaVelle E. Neal III and Joe Christensen at the Minneapolis Star Tribune, he's been forced to suffer the indignity of blogging. For LEN3 and Christensen it seems like a welcomed opportunity to interact with readers and share information that otherwise wouldn't have made it into the newspaper, but thanks to some of that off-the-record, in-private gossip I'm fairly certain Williams doesn't feel the same way.
UPDATE: Entries like this are why, in addition to being the Official Twins Beat Writer of AG.com, LEN3 is going to be an excellent blogger:
My buddy Jim Souhan has arrived and already has stirred up controversy. He was in the corner of the clubhouse, talking with Torii Hunter about MY basketball game. I've routinely admitted to being the worst basketball player--ever--from Chicago, but I haven't been on a court with Jim for about six years, and I don't know why he's bringing up my game at 8:45 a.m.
All I could do was confirm his story. "It's true, Torii," I said. "I've created a new position--power guard."
That story is amusing enough that I'm willing to let him off the hook for being buddies with Shecky Souhan.
Bonds was interviewed by Jim Gray at the NBA All-Star game and gave such friendly, joking answers that my mom asked, "Is that the same Bonds who everyone hates?"
Matt Cain was throwing cheese to Barry Bonds, maybe not 95 mph, but close enough. When Cain got Bonds to swing and miss at a chest-level fastball, he flashed a big smile from the mound and threw another heater, this one belt-high. Bonds fouled it off the ceiling of the cage.
Bonds then looked at the kid barely half his age standing 60 feet away and said, "Throw it again." Cain said, "OK, here it comes."
And there it went. At the Giants' first workout for position players, less than 24 hours after Bonds flew in from Las Vegas, he connected with a serious fastball from Cain and smashed it over the fence in right-center field at Scottsdale Stadium. With that, Bonds left the cage, flipped his bat and declared, "I'm ready."
UPDATE: The Big Picture also just published an interview with Dan Steinberg, who blogs for the Washington Post's website. As a "mainstream blogger" he provides an interesting perspective and, as you might expect from someone who writes a great blog, gives a lot of really good answers.
You can see what the beard looked like after three days and what it looked like after three weeks. If for some strange reason you're not into watching the hair on my face grow from week-to-week, updates on the situation were also available via my Rotoworld colleague Gregg Rosenthal's blog. Seriously. Back on February 2, when the experiment was in its infancy, Gregg wrote: "Aaron Gleeman's stubble shows up in the baseball show."
Then, after returning from a lengthy trip to Japan, Gregg reported that "Tiffany [Simons] and Aaron Gleeman's burgeoning beard held down the fort on the baseball show" while he was gone. If nothing else, the last beard to get this much play on Rotoworld was Johnny Damon's Jesus look. I'd show you what it looks like now, except I chickened out and ended the experiment the other day so I could take a clean-shaven headshot for something.
Truth be told, it was a sorry excuse for a beard. There was far too much coverage in the neck area and not nearly enough coverage in the goatee area, which made the whole operation look ridiculous. With that said, I'm proud to have at least gone from "stubble" to a "burgeoning beard" within the span of 17 days. It makes me think that, if given enough time--perhaps six months or 15 years--I could come up with a legitimate, Ron Silver-like beard that we could all be proud of.
There are about 1,000 other potential questions where those came from, even without getting into what actually took place once Jones got to the strip club (it sounds like he got Britney Spears-level crazy). When he's not reporting on my facial hair, Rosenthal's blog is a great place to find Pacman-related updates, especially given that the mainstream media seems remarkably hesitant to cover the story for whatever reason.
I'm signed on to do a weekly call-in segment for an NBCSports.com show, the first of which took place yesterday afternoon, and I'm booked to do Baseball Prospectus Radio early next week. I'd need a time machine to make good on the dozens of radio shows whose invitations I stupidly rejected over the past couple years, but hopefully as I get more comfortable doing the phone-in thing I can make up for passing on so many good opportunities. Either that or I'll finally be able to order pizzas for myself.
As long-time reader Barry Hess pointed out to me last night, one of the great things about this site is that it allows me to be what Malcolm Gladwell describes as a "connector" in his book, The Tipping Point (which, incidentally, I'm in the middle of reading right now). Without this blog, how else could I get in touch with a dozen web designers and a handful of realtors who'd like to help me, not to mention hundreds of strangers willing to offer up their ideas? The internet is a hell of a drug.