December 2, 2011

Link-O-Rama

• You never, ever mess with a man's beard.

• Science seems fun.

• How strong is Mila Kunis' grip on the Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com title? Michael Idov of GQ described her as "the Jewish mother" and I didn't immediately repossess her crown.

• This week's podcast might have been my favorite episode yet and not just because a woman brought us cupcakes. Shortly after starting to record the show a random drunk guy came up to our table and berated us for "talking about things that don't even matter." He was wasted on a Tuesday night and wearing a newsboy cap, so we all just kind of stared until he angrily left.

• I tuned in for the debut episode of Baseball Wives on VH1. My condensed review: By far the worst thing I've ever seen on television. I will watch it every week and analyze it like The Wire.

Jason Kendall's ex-wife Chantel Kendall is my favorite Baseball Wives character, so naturally we became Twitter pals. One step closer to Baseball Blogger Wives becoming a reality (show).

• Someone broke into White Sox general manager Ken Williams' home, drank beer, ate pizza, wore his World Series ring, and defrosted lobster.

• And somehow that wasn't even the weirdest break-in story this week, as a woman watched streaming video and gave play-by-play commentary to police as her home was burglarized:

Pretty impressive response time by the cops, too.

• NBC canceled Prime Suspect just as it was starting to get good and pulled Community off the midseason schedule. There's still some hope that Community will live on, but unfortunately the ratings have never come close to matching the show's brilliance.

• In happier NBC news, Louis C.K. is back on Parks and Recreation and Sarah Silverman might be getting her own show.

• If anything can stop people from hating Netflix bringing back Arrested Development can do it.

• Stand-up comedy lost another great one way too early.

Ben Goessling is leaving MASN in Washington, D.C. to cover the Wild and Twins for the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Not only has Goessling done an excellent job covering the Nationals, he's a former Minnesota Daily staffer. I've been critical of the Pioneer Press, but he's a very good hire.

• Speaking of the Nationals, they promoted Matthew LeCroy to Double-A manager at age 35.

• Wanna feel really old? Ken Griffey Jr.'s son is a high school football All-American.

• Jewish porn superstar James Deen is "almost like a guy you'd just hang out with at Hebrew school." Obviously my getting expelled from Hebrew school opened the door for him.

• My hypothesis for this story is that several fathers were afraid to admit they recognized her.

• This is obviously the greatest website of all time.

• On a related note, the boys at The Basketball Jones remaking Full House is brilliant:

Best shot-for-shot remake of all time?

• For a quirky, independent movie that sort of resembles my high school experience, check out John C. Reilly, Jacob Wysocki, and Creed Bratton in Terri. He has nicer pajamas, though.

• I also saw Attack The Block recently and it was one of my favorite movies in years.

George Clooney and I lead slightly different lives.

Nick Bilton of the New York Times speculates on what we've all suspected: Airlines make you turn off electronic devices for no good reason.

• "Like an old lady driving an Oldsmobile in a parking lot when everyone else is driving BMWs" perfectly describes my continued Blackberry usage.

• "Hey girl, wanna go look at some graves?"

Bill Belichick with a late bid for quote of the year.

• And they say working at a newspaper isn't fun any more?

• One-stop shopping for all your rapper soundboard needs, which are no doubt immense.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Reigning Sound doing "Stick Up For Me":

November 4, 2011

Link-O-Rama

• It turns out "replacement level" means something totally different in the non-baseball world.

• I'm not much for petitions, but this is certainly a worthwhile cause. They've suffered enough.

• An important reminder from my mom's favorite player: Being fat isn't the same as being jolly.

Kris Humphries stayed with the Gophers longer than this.

Scarlett Johansson quote of the week: "There's nothing wrong with that. It's not like I was shooting a porno. Although there's nothing wrong with that either. I know my best angles."

Cory Provus will replace John Gordon as the Twins' radio play-by-play announcer. Provus previously worked with Bob Uecker in Milwaukee and Brewers fans on Twitter gave him lots of very positive reviews yesterday.

This news is responsible for more nerd fantasies than all six Star Wars movies combined.

• Of course, it's not all good news on the fantasy girl marketplace.

• As promised, I now have both of these in my closet.

Nick Diaz shouting "train by day, Joe Rogan podcast all night" after defeating B.J. Penn was my favorite post-fight moment in UFC history.

Except for the whole training part, I'm the same way.

Mark Brunell has earned $50 million during an 18-season NFL career that's still going at age 41, but once he retires he'll be working as a medical sales representative to make ends meet.

• Remember how Michael Beasley's publicist annoyingly sent me 20 e-mails in the span of two days last week? Despite being perfect for each other they've parted ways already.

• My favorite journalism school teacher, Paul McEnroe, wrote a really interesting article for the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

• More than three million people still pay to subscribe to AOL's dial-up service. Seriously.

• My musical taste is often mocked, and rightfully so most of the time, but two of my favorites are struggling with eerily similar throat problems that seemingly could threaten their careers.

• Once upon a time, before he managed 5,000 games and wore jeans on late-night television talk shows, Tony La Russa was just a Triple-A infielder with a weak bat and strong sideburns.

John Bonnes, Seth Stohs, Nick Nelson, and Parker Hageman apparently did a group photo shoot for their TwinsCentric blog on the Star Tribune's website and it reminded me of this:

"Straight Outta Warroad."

• Speaking of the Star Tribune's website, they moved to a metered paywall for content, which is a bold move to say the least. StarTribune.com sports coordinator and Twins blogger Howard Sinker is scheduled to be our guest on next week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode, so we'll definitely get into the newspaper talk along with the usual baseball stuff.

• And if you haven't checked out this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" show yet, it's probably worth listening to just to hear us compare Aaron Hicks to a bad Adrian Brody movie.

• SB Nation hired one of my favorite baseball writers, Amy K. Nelson, away from ESPN.

• My latest podcast discovery: "The Champs" with Moshe Kasher and Neal Brennan, which is the perfect mix of funny, serious, interesting, and silly. Listening to their two-part episode with Blake Griffin immediately made him my favorite NBA player.

• Kasher and Brennan also recommended watching Eddie Murphy's first guest appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, which mostly made me sad that he's spent the past 15 years making kids movies.

• Listening to Sarah Silverman chat with Julie Klausner was a highlight of this Hebrew school expellee's week.

Tony Oliva and Jim Kaat are among 10 candidates on the special "golden era" Hall of Fame ballot. To me they both narrowly miss the cut, but I'm sure many Twins fans feel differently.

This guy is the Twins' new Triple-A hitting coach.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is "How You Like Me Now?" by The Heavy:

September 2, 2011

Link-O-Rama

This week's Link-O-Rama is sponsored by ... no one. Please help support AG.com's free content and advertise your product, service, local business, or website by becoming a "Sponsor of the Week."

Free Toby!

• I'm fortunate in that no one really liked me much as a fat guy, but Jonah Hill isn't so lucky.

Halle Berry celebrated her 45th birthday by making it very difficult to believe she celebrated her 45th birthday.

Ryan Braun had his sights on an inside-the-park homer, but instead he wiped out. And then his teammates recreated the crime scene.

• I can't wait to hang out with Sarah Silverman at the NBC company Christmas party.

• Texting with Shaquille O'Neal seems like fun.

• TMZ reports that Lenny Dykstra "pulled a bait and switch" with his penis "at least six times."

Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer has a great story about fellow St. Paul native (and JCC basketball league alum) Jack Hannahan and the generosity of his Indians teammates.

• This chart showing the evolution of every NBA team's logo is oddly fascinating.

• I respect Minka Kelly for not calling me immediately. She obviously doesn't want to come off as desperate.

• It turns out no one really wants to watch Conan O'Brien on TBS either.

• Two great tastes that taste great together: Judd Zulgad and Joe Anderson are teaming up for 1500-ESPN's new show.

• My favorite part of Twitter this week was Gilbert Arenas feuding with comedian Joe Mande.

• Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate Aubrey Plaza was fantastic on Late Show With David Letterman, progressing from nervous to charming to funny to serious in a 10-minute interview:

And there's even a Minnesota reference thrown in.

Kelly Brook on a bicycle. That's all.

• As a veteran of many conference calls and planning sessions, I can relate.

• One of my favorite baseball reporters, Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger, gave a lengthy, interesting interview about the beat writing world.

• Based on these photos Sammy Sosa seems really bothered by the constant steroid talk.

• If she's in, then I'm out.

• As someone who co-created a similarly ambitious independent sportswriting site I'm rooting extremely hard for Tom Scharpling, Bethlehem Shoals, Eric Freeman, and The Classical.

• My favorite review of "Gleeman and The Geek" was posted after the podcast's first episode:

This is a good medium for Gleeman. He writes like an arrogant spiteful jerk, but he seems like a good guy talking to you.

Aw, shucks.

• My second favorite review of the podcast was sent to the show's Twitter account:

Listening to "Gleeman and The Geek" it hit me: If you close your eyes, Aaron Gleeman sounds like Christopher Walken.

I'd never really heard myself talk for an extended period of time before, but I now realize how ridiculous and inexplicable my accent is for someone who's lived in Minnesota for his entire life. Based on the early feedback I sound like a mix of Christopher Walken, Michael Rapaport, and the "Da Bears" guys from Saturday Night Live. You can, of course, judge for yourself.

Harris Wittels, Chelsea Peretti, and Adam Scott on "Comedy Bang Bang" might have been the hardest I've ever laughed at a podcast.

• Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com candidate Diora Baird was a recent guest on Riki Lindhome's new "Making It" podcast.

Alex Rodriguez cares more about gambling than what MLB thinks about his gambling and as a fellow degenerate I approve.

• Mixed martial arts was already rapidly ascending into the mainstream, but the UFC signing a long-term deal with FOX and FX should move things along even more quickly. And they're not messing around with the first event.

Bruce Feldman leaving ESPN for CBS is a very interesting story.

• Renowned never-nude enthusiast and 47-year-old comedian/actor David Cross got engaged to 28-year-old actress Amber Tamblyn.

Bill Simmons and my dad hang out in the same places, apparently.

• Last week was my five-year anniversary at NBC, so if you haven't already maybe think about checking out HardballTalk.

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is James Taylor and Joe Walsh teaming up for a live cover of "Goodnight Irene" on Howard Stern's show:

March 11, 2011

Link-O-Rama

• It's no surprise that "the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be" also has the best family photo of all time.

• At a gymnastics meet Saturday a 60-year-old St. Thomas math professor punched a person wearing the Goldy Gopher mascot outfit and I'm having a hard time choosing who to side with in the story. Incidentally, my cousin once punched Mickey Mouse in the face while eating dinner at Epcot Center and 20 years later I still consider the moment one of the highlights of my life.

Jack Dickey recapping the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference is a must-read, if only for the analogy comparing Malcolm Gladwell to Delmon Young.

• Doesn't she know that dropouts never amount to anything?

Felicia Pearson, who played Snoop on The Wire, is among 63 people arrested in a Baltimore drug raid. David Simon chimed in regarding the incident, which probably doesn't qualify as "life imitating art" considering that Pearson's character on the show already imitated her actual life. "How my hair look, Mike?"

Tim McCarver will be calling games on FOX through at least 2013. I'm going to need a new mute button by then.

Ozzie Guillen quote of the week: "I'm the Charlie Sheen of baseball, but without drugs and a prostitute."

• For someone who grew up playing video games and marveling at the Chicago Bulls this video is just about perfect:

Whoever put that together and spliced in the old audio clips is a genius. Seriously.

J.C. Romero drove his Porsche Panamera from his offseason home in Alabama to the Phillies' spring training complex in Florida. And then someone stole it.

• I'm proud to say that three different people e-mailed me this link, which is a testament to my consistent perviness and the AG.com readers' continued support of said perviness.

• Some people may see an awful lot of tattoos, but I see an awful lot of teeth.

• I'm seeking recommendations for the best baseball writers who extensively cover prospects across MLB, rather than a team-specific focus, and also aren't affiliated with a prominent site already. Feel free to leave your suggestions in the comments section or e-mail them to me.

• Everyone has been spelling Kendry Morales' name wrong since 2004.

Kelly Oxford is one of my favorite non-baseball people to follow on Twitter and now she has television and book deals based on her great tweets.

• In case you missed this public service announcement earlier in the week: LaVelle E. Neal III would like everyone to stop confusing him with Al Newman.

• This is obviously very sad, but how long should I wait to inquire about the job opening?

Mike Pelfrey learned the hard way that you never assume a woman is pregnant.

• As part of the Minneapolis Jewish Film Festival there's a screening of "Jews and Baseball: An American Love Story" on March 30 at the Mall of America. Here's a trailer for the film:

Howard Sinker of the Minneapolis Star Tribune is introducing the film at MoA, Dustin Hoffman is the movie's narrator, and there are interviews with everyone from Sandy Koufax and Kevin Youkilis to Ron Howard and Larry King. Recommended for members of the tribe and goyim.

• Last week Howard Stern, who lives in New York, appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, which is in Los Angeles. And instead of the usual satellite setup, they green-screened him into the chair.

• On a related note, Jimmy Kimmel's ex-girlfriend, Sarah Silverman, had a great appearance on Stern's show yesterday.

Andy Dick's appearance on Joe Rogan's podcast was pretty great too.

• My uncle and cousin are both available for scouting jobs.

• Rotoworld's annual fantasy baseball draft guide is now available online. I'm "editor-in-chief" and it's a big part of my job, so I'd be grateful if AG.com readers checked it out. You get 1,000 player profiles and projections, a couple dozen strategy articles, customizable cheat sheets, and a whole bunch of other good stuff that adds up to 150,000-plus words of content updated all spring. Buy it, so I don't have to move back to the proverbial parents' basement.

• I'm still loving Netlix streaming. Some recent documentary recommendations: The September Issue, The Parking Lot Movie, Eternal Enemies: Lions and Hyenas, The Wild and Wonderful Whites, Gonzo, Rolling Stones: Stones in Exile.

• Here are some highlights from my NBCSports.com blogging this week:

- Chase Utley's status for Opening Day in doubt due to on knee injury
- Someone should tell Nyjer Morgan to stop trying to steal bases
- Coco Crisp was being followed by "secret service" at time of DUI arrest
- Domonic Brown set for surgery tomorrow; out 4-6 weeks
- Jake Peavy throwing well and aiming "to break camp with the team"
- Charlie Manuel close to two-year extension with Phillies
- Adam Dunn should visit Baseball-Reference.com some time
- Ryan Madson hopes to stay with the Phillies, but wants to be a closer
- For some reason the Royals want Billy Butler stealing bases

• Finally, this week's AG.com-approved music video is Mark Schottinger performing "Black and White" from the aforementioned The Parking Lot Movie:

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