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08-01

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Prospectus Matchups: The Knee-Jerk All-Stars Revisited
by
Jim Baker

07-25

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Prospectus Matchups: I'll Get 'Em Next Time
by
Jim Baker

07-18

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Prospectus Matchups: Braking and Breaking at the Break
by
Jim Baker

07-11

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Prospectus Matchups: Exiting Stage Left
by
Jim Baker

06-27

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Prospectus Matchups: Learning to Cheer Correctly
by
Jim Baker

06-20

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Prospectus Matchups: Late Standing Starts
by
Jim Baker

06-13

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Prospectus Matchups: The American League Rumsfeld Numbers
by
Jim Baker

06-10

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Prospectus Matchups: Four In a Row
by
Jim Baker

06-06

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Prospectus Matchups: Hall Jones
by
Jim Baker

05-30

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Prospectus Matchups: Sacrificial Lions
by
Jim Baker

05-16

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Prospectus Matchups: The 2008 Baseball Psychological Workout
by
Jim Baker

05-09

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Prospectus Matchups: Outlier Outpost
by
Jim Baker

05-02

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Prospectus Matchups: Fun with Playoff Odds
by
Jim Baker

04-25

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Prospectus Matchups: Here's What I Think
by
Jim Baker

04-18

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Prospectus Matchups: The Multi-Stretch
by
Jim Baker

04-11

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Prospectus Matchups: The Second Annual Knee-Jerk All Stars
by
Jim Baker

04-04

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Prospectus Matchups: Early-Season Miscellany
by
Jim Baker

03-28

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Prospectus Matchups: Opening Day Goodbyes
by
Jim Baker

03-21

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Prospectus Matchups: The One-Man Affair
by
Jim Baker

03-14

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Prospectus Matchups: The 2008 Prospectus Matchups Contest
by
Jim Baker

03-07

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Prospectus Matchups: Stocks, Cactus, Grapefruit & Jones
by
Jim Baker

02-29

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Prospectus Matchups: The 2008 Transient All-Star Team
by
Jim Baker

02-22

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Prospectus Matchups: The Best of the Newest, 2008 edition
by
Jim Baker

02-15

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Prospectus Matchups: The Dawn of the Rays
by
Jim Baker

02-08

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Prospectus Matchups: The All-Time Matchup Record Book
by
Jim Baker

02-01

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Prospectus Matchups: Putting Cys in Motion
by
Jim Baker

01-25

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Prospectus Matchups: Baseball on the Bookshelf
by
Jim Baker

01-18

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Prospectus Matchups: The Random Baedeker
by
Jim Baker

01-11

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Prospectus Matchups: Here's a Thought: Stop Thinking
by
Jim Baker

01-04

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Prospectus Matchups: Dead Horses and Fifth Starters
by
Jim Baker

12-28

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Prospectus Matchups: The Worst Seasons On Record
by
Jim Baker

12-21

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Prospectus Matchups: The Mismatches
by
Jim Baker

12-14

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Prospectus Matchups: Inside the Mitchell Report
by
Jim Baker

12-07

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Prospectus Matchups: Topic Hopping
by
Jim Baker

11-30

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Prospectus Matchups: The Freshmen
by
Jim Baker

11-16

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Prospectus Matchups: Rookie Spoilers
by
Jim Baker

11-09

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Prospectus Matchups: A First for the Ages
by
Jim Baker

11-02

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Prospectus Matchups: Offseason's Bidding
by
Jim Baker

10-30

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Prospectus Matchups: Fighting the Impossible Battle
by
Jim Baker

10-26

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Prospectus Matchups: Fight the Powers That Be!
by
Jim Baker

10-23

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Prospectus Matchups: Series Firsts
by
Jim Baker

10-19

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Prospectus Matchups: The (Elimination) Gamers
by
Jim Baker

10-16

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Prospectus Matchups: Starting Well is Two-Thirds of Half the Battle
by
Jim Baker

10-12

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Prospectus Matchups: Lets Get Loaded and See What Happens
by
Jim Baker

10-09

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Prospectus Matchups: Me So Worthy, or Unworthy
by
Jim Baker

10-05

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Prospectus Matchups: Getting Right Back on the Horse
by
Jim Baker

09-28

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Prospectus Matchups: The Matchups That Matter
by
Jim Baker

09-25

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Prospectus Matchups: VORP Leaders
by
Jim Baker

09-21

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Prospectus Matchups: Straight to the Top
by
Jim Baker

09-18

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Prospectus Matchups: Turnover
by
Jim Baker

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May 2, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: Fun with Playoff Odds

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Jim Baker

A look at the first month surprises in the postseason odds report, as well as the teams that nearly joined the Dodgers and Giants in relocating 50 years ago.

When looking at BP's Postseason Odds report, it is important to remember that it is not written in stone. Just last year, several teams undid sure things going in either direction. Take this year's surest thing, the Arizona Diamondbacks, for instance. At one point well into the 2007 season, they were showing an 11 percent chance of making the playoffs. They destroyed those odds, as you'll recall. This year, they're running at a percentage that is nearly reciprocal to that. Here are the four clubs that are currently showing a better than 50 percent chance of getting into the Final Eight:

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April 25, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: Here's What I Think

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Jim Baker

A quick check of the calendar, and it's off to the small wonderments.

Dark Ages Park

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April 18, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The Multi-Stretch

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Jim Baker

Two games last night featured more than one seventh inning stretch. How long has such a tradition been going on?

A friend of mine, who now owes me $500 for not mentioning his name in this context because he is a respectable member of society these days, went through a period of accelerated alcohol intake a number of years ago. For him, any event was a reason to party. He and some buddies went to Shea Stadium and ended up spending the entire game in the Diamond Club, soaking up cocktails. When the ninth inning ended in a tie, allowing them to keep the booze bag strapped on, he coined the immortal phrase, "Extra innings means extra drinks." I'm pretty sure it hasn't made it to Bartlett's Familiar Quotations or even Paul Dickson's Baseball's Greatest Quotations, but it should have. It's probably best for society that it hasn't, though.

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April 11, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The Second Annual Knee-Jerk All Stars

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Jim Baker

It's two weeks into the season, so let's crown some All Stars!

Are you the sort that asks a woman to marry him on the first date? Do you buy the first car you look at on the sales lot? Have you ever stood up in a movie theater after the opening credits of a movie and yelled, "We are witnessing the greatest film ever made!...?" If so, then the Knee-Jerk All Stars are for you.

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April 4, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: Early-Season Miscellany

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Jim Baker

The Bay Area gets a drought warning, the baseball lexicon gets a new entry, and talkative fantasy owners get a forum.

Lean Times by the Bay

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Whether it's the lineup cards or even a few individual players, don't be surprised if you witness a few disappearing acts.

Don't Get Too Used to Your Opening Day Lineup

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March 21, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The One-Man Affair

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Jim Baker

If the social part of fantasy baseball's not your thing, here's an alternative.

"L'enfer, c'est les autres" ("Hell is other people.")
--Garcin in No Exit by Jean-Paul Sartre
"I live alone. I train alone. I win the title alone."
--Clubber Lang in Rocky III by Sylvester Stallone

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March 14, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The 2008 Prospectus Matchups Contest

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Jim Baker

Think you can predict MLVr? Step up to claim your official ballot and select your 20 players.

Remember this adage: a person who is in the midst of a contest always has a reason to live. So, regardless of what the state of the economy does to your fragile psyche in the coming six months, if you enter the 2008 Prospectus Matchups Contest, you will have the impulse to carry on. For one thing, there will be a grand prize for the winner--a Baseball Prospectus polo shirt. For another, there is the pure thrill of competition, to know that you are matching wits with the smartest baseball fans in the world.

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March 7, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: Stocks, Cactus, Grapefruit & Jones

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Jim Baker

Onward, ever onward with the pursuit of random knowledge!

Doesn't "Stocks, Cactus, Grapefruit & Jones" sound like the name of a band that released one semi-well-received album in 1968 and then faded into the vast desert of obscurity? It's not, though; it's just a roundup of the various topics I'll be covering today.

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February 29, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The 2008 Transient All-Star Team

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Jim Baker

The best at every position of those that switched squads prior to this season.

Americans are a transient lot. On average, we move 13 times in a lifetime (note: number exaggerated to enhance premise). Our ballplayers are no different; they are often found switching teams. Because of this, it became necessary for me to create the Transient All-Star Team back in 2005. In order to be eligible for this esteemed body, a player must simply be with a different franchise in 2008 than he was at the conclusion of the 2007 season. In the past, I named a player at each position for each league. This year, I'm doing something a little different: presenting the best candidates at each position, discussing their qualifications, and naming just one player overall. As we shall see, the word "best" is relative at some of the positions, while at others, the field is so crowded it is quite difficult to pick a top contender.

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February 22, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The Best of the Newest, 2008 edition

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Jim Baker

A tradition rolls into its third season, as Jim peeks at the projected VORP leaders among players without big-league experience.

Each year around this time, we take a look at the young players with no major league experience who have the highest PECOTA on a position-by-position basis. Some of these players are ready enough to pop, while others are still a few years away. Others still are non-prospects who just happen to be the most big-league friendly at their position, but who may never even see the majors owing to age and other factors. We're also going to look at how the players discussed in 2006 and 2007 fared. To be eligible for inclusion here, a player must have no major league experience, although I reserve the right to waive that restriction if a particular position runs thin. Even with that, it can be no more than a handful of plate appearances or batters faced.

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February 15, 2008 12:00 am

Prospectus Matchups: The Dawn of the Rays

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Jim Baker

Tampa Bay's huge collection of impact talent, in both the minors and the majors, will soon lead to the razing of the club's individual VORP records at each position.

The Atlanta Braves in 1990the Kansas City A's in 1967the New York Mets in 1968these were all teams on the verge of breaking out. Was it known at the time? Were people cognizant that these teams were about to put aside their former losing ways and ascend to a new level? To some extent, yes, it was apparent that pieces were falling into place before the great leap forward came.

<> Can we now, on the brink of this new season, put the 2007 Tampa Bay Devil Rays on that list? Was 2007 the last bit of calm before the Rays storm that is bound to come, or will it be 2008?

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