This is a re-posting of our previous call for interns, as selections will be made very soon and we wanted to give one final call for applicants. Apologies to those reading my jokes for the second time. Thanks!
Baseball Prospectus is looking for its next crop of interns to assist in a variety of areas for the upcoming season, ranging from statistical research to database querying to copy editing and all the way to playing video games with Marc Normandin. Okay, maybe not that last part, but definitely the first few and more. You’ll get to work on cutting edge baseball analysis with some of coolest people on the web (is that an oxymoron?). In the past, some of our interns have graduated into contributors and authors for the site, and others have gone on to work for major league teams.
We are looking for three different types of interns:
– Tech: should have knowledge of PHP, MySQL, Oracle, Perl, Apache and Linux. Assignments to include scripting and design, documentation and special projects under the direction of our technical team.
– Data: should have knowledge of MySQL and Oracle. Assignments to include the processing of statistical queries for authors as well as the conditioning and refinement of data, aiding in the optimization of our resources.
– Editorial: should have copy editing and related skills experience, as well as experience with blogs and content management systems. In other words, you should be able to take what I just wrote and not only make it sound professional, but also format it properly in a blog setting. Assignments to include second and third reads of every article published online, copy editing that which gets published, and working to edit special projects on assignment.
You must be able to receive college credit for your internship. Baseball Prospectus internships are unpaid.
If interested, please send your resume and a short description (100-300 words) of yourself to email@example.com, with the subject line “Intern Applicant”.
The whole world of baseball is a bit on edge, waiting for Tuesday. While most fans wait on pitchers and catchers, people inside baseball (and the kind of obsessives here at BP) are waiting to see “the number.” What will Tim Lincecum and his representatives ask for in arbitration? Speculation has been rampant, ranging from $8m to $22m.
So why not have fun with it? I declare the Lincecum Lottery open. In comments, guess the correct dollar figure* and we’ll give you a BP gift subscription to give to the person of your choosing. Good luck and get to guessing! If you’d like, add in how you came to the number.
* The tiebreaker will be whoever submitted the correct number first. Please submit only one number per username.
We have all seen the horrific reports coming out of Haiti in the wake of Tuesday’s disastrous earthquake, and they seem to get worse by the hour. To play our very small part in the massive rescue and relief effort, Baseball Prospectus will be donating $1,000 to Doctors Without Borders.
While most of us are safe in our homes dreaming about Spring Training, hundreds of thousands of people are without food, water, and shelter. We hope that our modest contribution will encourage others within our very generous community to join the cause and help those in need.
If you are looking for an organization involved with the relief effort, here are four you might consider:
Many of you who are members of SABR already know this, having received your copy of the latest issue of the Baseball Research Journal, and Matt Swartz is too modest to mention it, but a version of his series on home-field advantage was included as one of the more sabermetric pieces. Overall, this latest copy of the BRJ was devoted to the subject of baseball and the law, featuring the work of such baseball fans/luminaries as Samuel Alito (the Supreme Court Justice) on the origins of baseball’s antitrust exemption, Roger I. Abrams on the Seitz decision, BP alum Mark Armour on AL president Joe Cronin’s firing of two AL umpires in 1968 for attempting to organize their league mates, and a piece by the late Gene Carney on the detectives hired by Charles Comiskey to tail the Black Sox. David Smith and Tom Ruane of Retrosheet also contributed pieces, and there’s far more besides.
So, first off, congratulations to Matt for a job well-done. Second, if you haven’t explored the benefits of being a SABR member, check it out, you won’t regret it. If you didn’t know, SABR Day in America is coming up on January 30, and while it doesn’t appear that the Chicago chapter’s pulling anything together, you tell me, anyone in the Windy City interested in trying for something more informal?
In the last day, BP has posted two articles — one a quick Unfiltered post about Mark McGwire and his steroid confessions, another a longer statistical look at aging curves by an outside writer — that have had long, involved discussion threads. Call them “comments” if you want, but to me, it’s a discussion and even sometimes an argument thread.
A couple years ago when Dave Pease first started proposing the addition of comments to BP, I was probably the loudest voice against. I didn’t think we could have substantive discussions because of what I saw taking place across most of the internet.
I was wrong.
The fact that BP subscribers are almost by definition substantive people helps. The fact that we limit discussion to subscribers helps. But mostly, it’s just good discussion. At times, it gets a bit screechy and there’s a few people who are so regularly disruptive that I would have kicked them off the playground a long time ago if it were just up to me. But by and large, it’s been awesome.
Whether it’s a debate about steroids or a respected writer/thinker like J.C. Bradbury, I’d love it if BP became the pulpit for discussion again. So, while I don’t make decisions on this (or anything), I want to personally invite *anyone* who thinks they have a high quality idea that needs a bigger audience to bring it up. I’m not saying BP will publish anything and everything, but I hope that we’ll have more guests in the coming months.
In what comes as little surprise to anyone, Mark McGwire admitted using steroids and was implicated as using other substances. His quote that it “is time to talk about the past and admit what many suspected” is as close to a mea culpa as any steroid user has made.
The statement was made by McGwire in advance of officially becoming the Cardinals new hitting coach. It was expected that he would need to make some sort of statement prior to Spring Training so as not to become too much of a distraction, though he’s still going to be the best known hitting coach in the game. The statement, which I am told was vetted by the Cardinals, does help clear the air, answering most of the big questions:
* He states that he began using in 1989. (This is in contrast to what Jose Canseco has said.)
* He used to overcome injuries.
* He did use substances during the 1998 campaign where he broke Roger Maris’ home run record.
Remaining questions include:
* How did he acquire steroids and was Operation Equine (and McGwire’s younger brother) correct?
* What was he using and when? This may seem like a small thing, but McGwire’s usage patterns could go a long way in helping determine the true effect of steroids on hitting.
In many ways, McGwire’s statement echoes that of Andy Pettitte, who has largely been washed clean of the steroid taint that hangs over most of the suspected and known users. The PR is strong, starting with a 7pm Eastern interview between McGwire and Bob Costas on MLB Network.
It remains to be seen if McGwire’s statement will make it less distracting for him to be a hitting coach. Just imagine someone like Matt Holliday having a career year or Albert Pujols challenging the 60 or 70 home run line, just after McGwire comes in. It’s always in the back of the cynical fan’s mind at this stage when anyone makes a record run or just has a breakout year; attaching McGwire to it is going to create a frenzy if this were to occur.
It also remains to be seen if McGwire’s admission brings him any more Hall of Fame votes. Stuck in the mid 20% range, McGwire’s totals don’t indicate any change. Even Tony La Russa’s recent suggestion that McGwire could play one game, changing his Hall of Fame voting eligibility, was questioned strongly by Jack O’Connell of the BBWAA.
We’ll be talking about the past a lot over the next couple news cycles and again during the Cardinals 2010 campaign. For MLB, the question is whether they can ever move on from talking about the past. Senator Mitchell suggested a blanket amnesty for steroids users and perhaps it’s time for Selig and the owners to re-visit that concept once again.
We’re almost done. As George Harrison sang in “Here Comes the Sun,” it’s been a long, cold, lonely winter, but now it’s nearly over: Baseball Prospectus 2010 is just over a month away from hitting the shelves.
As I type these words, Christina and I are working our way through the typeset pages of the nigh-finished book, making updates so that every Tom, Dick, and Aroldis is in his proper place. By now you know that we’re obligated to say that “This volume is the best ever” in the same way that a comedian has to say, “Hey, it’s really great to be here!” but I really do believe that this volume is the best ever. PECOTA has been finely tuned, and we’ve added a nice little extra to it, a percentage that indicates just how much of the season a player’s comparables spent in the majors. We’ve got our best crew of writers yet, writing at greater length about more players than ever. We’ve got another edition of Kevin Goldstein’s Top 101 Prospects (yes, 101; the guy does a Top 11 prospects here at BP.com so we figured the book list should also go one beyond the traditional limit). We’ve got Jay Jaffe’s redesigned Prospectus Boxes, which I really want to put on a T-shirt. Heck, we’ve even got an index, or will have as soon as the indefatigable Ms. Kahrl gets through putting it together. Finally, we have a cover, which is very important because, much as Casey Stengel said that you need a catcher because without one you’ll have too many passed balls, without a cover the pages tends to blow away when the doors of the subway car open.
We will be talking about the book more as we get closer to the street date. In the meantime, please avail yourself of the purchase link on the left-hand side of the home page–this might be too much information, but Kevin gets a hot flash every time someone clicks through. We thank you for sticking with us through 15 editions, and we look forward to seeing you after the book has come out.
As Kevin noted, I’ve tracked the market for player contracts at Cot’s Baseball Contracts since 2005. I know BP.com will be a great, user-friendly upgrade for that information, whether you’re conducting hardcore statistical analysis, putting together a fantasy team or just arguing with a friend about the relative value and costs of, say, Joey Gathright and Brian N. Anderson.
I’ll also weigh in with occasional articles about contracts and developments in the market or the business side of the game. I’ll be eager to hear feedback once the transition of the contract information is complete, and I hope everyone has half as much fun with the numbers as I know I’ll have here at Baseball Prospectus.
In Boston, this Saturday is all about baseball. And music. And bowling. More importantly, it is also about children and charities. There are three events, and if you’re in the area you want to be in attendance for any, or all, of them.
ATTENTION NON-BOSTON-AREA READERS: You can stop reading here if you wish, but be forewarned: If you do, you will miss Peter Gammons giving scouting reports on the musical chops of a big-league GM, a soft-tossing lefthander, and a 15-game winner.
The day’s first event, starting at 11:15 a.m., takes place at Jillian’s, right down the street from Fenway Park. A benefit for The Jimmy Fund [part of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute], New Stars for Young Stars features an autograph session with some of the top prospects in the Red Sox organization, along with Manny Delcarmen, Jeremy Hermida, Trot Nixon and Curt Schilling. Not only will attendees be helping to fight cancer in children, there will also be bowling.
Next up, at 1:30 p.m., is a baseball roundtable at Fenway Park. Associated with the evening’s Hot Stove Cool Music event, it will be hosted by Peter Gammons and will include Bronson Arroyo, Theo Epstein, Terry Francona, Omar Minaya, and Carlos Pena.
Finally, at 7 p.m. at the House of Blues, just across the street from Fenway, is the 10th annual Hot Stove Cool Music concert. Put on by Epstein and Gammons to raise money for the Foundation to Be Named Later [a branch of the Red Sox Foundation], it is four hours of music for a good cause. This year’s performers include: State Radio, Low Anthem, Tinted Windows, Kay Hanley, and the HSCM All-Stars featuring Arroyo, Epstein, Gammons, Bill Janovitz and Ken Casey, with Lenny DiNardo also expected to sit in on guitar.
To help prep concertgoers for the show, Peter Gammons was kind enough to supply scouting reports on three of the performers:
Gammons on Arroyo: “The first year Bronson came was ‘04. He asked if he could get up and sing Black.’ A couple of people said no, but, hey, this is my event and it’s baseball and rock ‘n roll. Despite the backup ‘vocals’ of Kevin Millar, Arroyo was really good, and Theo looked at me and said, ‘if he’s got the balls to do this, he can pitch at Fenway.’ This was a pre-ARod event. In the words of Buffalo Springfield, ‘He got soul.’“
Gammons on DiNardo: “Lenny is a musical historian. He once asked me if I liked the song ‘He was a Friend of Mine.’ I told him I liked it best by Eric Von Schmidt and Rolf Cahn, and a week later he had three discs of recordings by them. Lenny is cautious. He performs on stage as if he’s pitching to Albert Pujols, but he is precise. Stays out of the zone.”
Gammons on Epstein: “Theo has edge, whether it was with Trauser or with Buffalo Tom, or Buffalo Theo as we call them. I thought they should play ‘Rockin’ In the Free World’ at his wedding. If Eddie Vedder were a GM, he’d be Theo–intense, intellectual and laced with integrity.”