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To celebrate the acquisition of R.A. Dickey by the Toronto Blue Jays, some friends and I watched the documentary Knuckleball! (recommended) followed by Dickey's destruction of the Orioles last June. It was a fun night.

When we paused the game to get more snacks, we accidentally discovered that Wilson Betemit looks exactly like Grumpy Cat when he strikes out.


fig. 1: Wilson Betemit

fig. 2: Grumpy Cat

This led to a number of Grumpy Cat-esque meme ideas, my favourite being this:

I really enjoyed Knuckleball! (and maybe I'll write a review of it later). If you're looking for a primer on what a knuckleball is like and would enjoy seeing a Superhero Origin Story style recounting of R.A. Dickey's long journey to the big leagues, it's worth a rental.

Here is the trailer.

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Named For Hank - Saturday, January 26 2013 @ 01:04 PM EST (#268313) #
Apparently there is even less crossover between people who know Wilson Betemit and people who know Grumpy Cat than I thought. Maybe I should have made a joke about what I pinned on Pinterest instead.

Just kidding, Pinterest is for ladies.

Mike Green - Saturday, January 26 2013 @ 07:10 PM EST (#268323) #
Liked the grumpy cat. Still looking for a Jose Reyes comparison. 
Geoff - Sunday, January 27 2013 @ 01:07 AM EST (#268327) #
I'd say the joke on Betemit is an unfortunate distraction to the real good story and opportunity here to discuss Dickey and the compelling new film few have gotten to see yet (I suppose) about Dickey and others who carry the legacy of the Knuckleball. As people may have missed the link to the trailer above, here it is a third time.

Once again, I think we can ignore the irrelevance of Betemit should we choose. Where should the story be on Dickey? Don't tell me people are already sickey of talking about Dickey. Chicks dig knuckleballs.

Geoff - Sunday, January 27 2013 @ 11:23 AM EST (#268328) #
To try and perhaps throw in another discussion, this about the curious cases of Michael Bourn and Kyle Lohse, it occurs to me that the best resolution for either player may be to sign for one year, with the side agreement that either a) no qualifying offer will be made at the end; or b) the player will be traded at some point in the season, thus negating the possibility of being stuck in the same spot as now.

The trouble with this remains the loss of a draft pick for signing either player. In situation b, it is possible that the team could acquire talent to compensate the loss of the draft pick. And some teams stand to lose less than others in the form of draft pick and slot money.

So who out there might be best served to use this approach?

Named For Hank - Sunday, January 27 2013 @ 07:46 PM EST (#268342) #
I'm thinking about reviewing the movie, but I want to find some kind of angle to approach it from. One of the greatest things it does is pull together material from MLB games, archives, news, and new interviews and make it all appear to be of a piece. The work done on "conforming" all the sources is phenomenal, and when they cut from lushly-shot demo footage from a high speed camera to in-game footage, it's seamless.

But beyond that, it's a compelling pair of stories, well told.

bpoz - Monday, January 28 2013 @ 06:51 PM EST (#268373) #
I think that Bourn & Lohse situation is a great topic.

They turned down about $13mil for 1 year. They must have thought that they could do better.
J Hamilton thought the same thing. He did better with LAA. LAA loses their 1st pick & the budget for it. There must be other FAs that have cost their new team a draft pick.

What are the possibilities for Bourn & Lohse?
1) Signing with their old team negates the draft pick loss. They may have to give a big discount.
2) Sign with the old team & then get traded.
3) Some team may be willing to give up a pick for a very good bargain.
4) No takers under the new CBA.

The Jay's Josh J could be in this situation next off season. If his 2013 performance creates uncertainty about his value.

Similarly the new draft budget rules created unpleasant situations. From my understanding M Smoral signed for $1mil over slot. This IMO cost us G Heyman a 6'4" OF that I understand is a track star. So depending on his other tools he may have been a high potential prospect. R Kellog 6'5" LHP is small only compared to 6'8" LHP Smoral. Depending on the scouting reports & $ asked for we gave up something in talent or gained something in talent for the budget $ we gained in punting the round 4-10 picks.

Heyman & Kellog lost too as they cannot be drafted for a few years.

92-93 - Monday, January 28 2013 @ 11:27 PM EST (#268376) #
Bourn is a perfect fit for the Phillies, give Amaro some time.

Lohse, on the other hand, might be best off waiting until the draft happens before signing with a team that would rather give him a decent 3-4 year deal than have to package prospects to shore up their rotation for the stretch drive.
hypobole - Tuesday, January 29 2013 @ 01:24 AM EST (#268380) #
Bourn WAS a perfect fit for the Phillies until they traded Vance Worley and Trevor May for Ben Revere. He was also a perfect fit for the Nats until they traded Alex Meyer for Denard Span. Bourn may well be screwed.

Lohse may be a less appealing player than Bourn, but he's in a much better position. Some team that considers itself a contender will lose a pitcher to injury early on (and probably more than one team). That will give Lohse a market if he's still unsigned.
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