I’m Boyd Nation, the chief cook and bottle-washer over at
Boyd’s World, a site devoted
rankings, analysis, and the occasional opinion about college baseball.
I’ve been asked by the Baseball Prospectus editors to write a series of
pieces on the college game in time for this year’s
World Series. For the most part, I’m going to be trying to pull
analysis of the college game with, hopefully, some pointers on lessons
can be learned about the game in general. This week, though, I’m going
start off with an introduction to the college game, go to an admission
the two most common objections major league fans tend to have to the
college game, and finish with an explanation of why there are reasons
love the college game both as a pastime in itself and as part of a
context of baseball appreciation.
There is no other hospital I have ever seen that includes its Astroturf infield in the tour. Hidden away just off the Interstate in northern Cincinnati, I was invited to go into, what for me was essentially the mouth of the beast. Swerving through the new construction of a suburban office park, almost anonymous from the outside, Beacon Orthopaedic Clinic beckoned me to come inside, to let my guard down, and to face the man I’d criticized in print more than any other. It was the equivalent of Rush Limbaugh being invited into the Clinton White House. It was Doug Pappas being invited to a Selig family picnic.
In my years as an injury analyst, there was no name that had come up more than Ken Griffey Jr.. When speaking of Griffey, there was no way to avoid involving Dr. Tim Kremchek in the discussion. Like many, my opinion of Kremchek had descended from joking derision. My views were colored by incidents which, from the outside, supported my views. More recently though, Reds Assistant General Manager Brad Kullman convinced me to keep an open mind, that I might be wrong about Kremchek. I decided to try and find out for myself.
Yesterday’s Shea Hillenbrand-for-Byung-Hyun Kim trade is many things, all of which can be summed in one word: Fun.
It’s a baseball trade, one in which the financial considerations are a tertiary concern. It’s two teams getting together to exchange strength in an effort to patch weaknesses, with an eye towards glory this year. It’s a challenge trade: one-for-one, no cash, players to be named or future considerations. I’m not ashamed to say that the deal put a real hop in my step; there are so many angles to the swap, so many facets to be examined, and so many ways in which it could go right or wrong for either team.
The Indians sort through tall pitching prospects as the Quest For 2005 continues. The Dodgers offense is bad–like historically bad. The Mariners’ insane love affair with Dan Wilson rolls on. Plus other news and notes out of Cleveland, Los Angeles, and Seattle.
It all comes back to health.
Yesterday’s Diamondbacks/Red Sox trade hinged not on talent–that was easy enough to agree on–and not on money, but on how the health of a couple of D’backs pitchers would affect their depth. Whether you think the Sox helped their pitching, the Snakes helped their putrid offense, or that there will be more deals cascading from this one, ignoring health just isn’t possible.
I’ll leave the trade analysis to others here at BP, but this is one where the numbers I watch (VORP, MLVr) don’t agree with how most will analyze this trade.
Onto the injuries….