I don't know if you watched the All Star game or not. After railing against it the last few days I admit to watching a few innings and then occasionally checking the score. Maybe I'm just getting older but I've found my interest in the game waning over the past decade. Which coincides perfectly with Bud's Ridiculous Gambit. Some other things he could have tied to the All Star Game which might have better maintained my interest:
1. The winning team gets a 15% discount on steam cleaned carpets with promise ABC News must cut into what ever they are broadcasting, including Presidential addresses, to show the steam cleaning live and in progress without commercials.
2. The winning team gets to watch Bud Selig's appearance on Queer Eye for the Straight Guy in a theater Mystery Science Theater 3000 style. Note: in this case I'd root for which ever team contained Brian Wilson.
3. They play each other in hockey.
Allan over at Joy of Sox has something everyone should read. It's a sort of history of activism in baseball and how it relates to this year's All Star game in Arizona. (To his credit he posted it before the game and to my detriment I'm linking to it afterwards.)
In his spare time between dealing with Parliament and signing Royal accords, Dave Cameron writes on Fan Graphs. And, no, I'm certain he's never head that one before. Mr. Cameron is doing what now seems to be his annual Trade Value series over at FG. He's counting down from number fifty by fives to the most valuable commodity in baseball at the present time. The first fifteen are up on the site (50-46; 45-41; 40-36). For the Red Sox obsessed Jacoby Ellsbury came in at number forty-three. I can only assume the top spot will again be held by either Manny Delcarmen or the San Diego Chicken.
Over at Beyond the Boxscore JD Sussman wonders if having a smart GM is enough to compete anymore. Looking at the past five years worth of World Series competitors, four of the nine different teams have General Managers who Mr. Sussman would define as "savvy." Sounds like there is some room for growth to me. Either that or getting to the World Series requires a fair bit of luck.
Yanks Fan/Sox Fan, Paul SF has a primer on the Red Sox AL East chances. He compares the team, ultimately favorably, to the '06 and '09 versions. This team is strong both in top end talent and depth. But sometimes the fates deal a decisive blow, like in '06 when the entire roster went down in the span of three weeks. If the active roster everyone was pointing to three months ago takes the field most days, and especially so during any playoff games, it's hard to see this version of the Red Sox not being successful (i.e making the playoffs). But if the starting rotation keeps getting injured and the star players plate appearances have to be replaced by those of AAA players things will be noticeably tougher, and the standings will reflect it.
Finally, for those of you who missed the All Star game, you missed the latest and greatest reason to be a Justin Timberlake fan. As Justin might say, I'm doing a great job here at Daily Links!