Dock Ellis’s No Hitter on Acid Cartoon

Ellis tells the story, James Blagden and Chris Isenberg animate it. There is fun, and there are drugs.

salary vs performance

ben fry

There has been a lot of talk about the Yanks buying the pennant, which ignores the fact that for eight years they bought the pennant but lost. I have a hard time working up to umbrage, but I do think it’s hard to judge the Yanks a great team because of all the extra money they spent.

Or rather, they may be a great team, but that’s because of all the money that was spent. The good news is that Cashman finally got it kind of right.

Ben Fry has charted the standings for the 30 teams based on their standings throughout the season. I’m not sure you learn anything concrete from this, but it’s a beautiful chart nonetheless. Have fun with the slider up top.

Tough Intervals: An Etherview with Pitchers and Poets

FanGraphs Baseball

Getting sort of meta, this is an interview with couple of guys who have a couple of excellent baseball sites ( and Rogue’s Baseball Index) that treat baseball as a leaping off point for the imagination. That makes them sound like less fun than they are, which is why I lead with the interview, which is funny. Read ’em all! [Thanks Carter!]

Major League Baseballs outdated, misleading offset camera angle.

By Greg Hanlon – Slate Magazine

I’ve written about this in the past. What this story adds, however, is a better view of what happens when the camera is right behind the pitcher. In order to see the hitter the camera has to be higher. This, it turns out, is just fine for inside-outside calls, but fails miserably to yield better calls on the high and low stuff. The examples are illuminating, in any case.

That’s How Easy Love Can Be

I found this clip over at and it seems the perfect view with which to remember Michael Jackson, whose music as a young boy is marked by its sweetness and exuberance, but which grew increasingly paranoid and sour as he grew older and it became more reflective of the pains and abuses of those early years.

Women running sprints in high heels :.

The football magazine is done (well, I’m waiting for the bluelines right now, but that’s it), so there’s time to think of other things. My fantasy teams are schizophrenic. In the American Dream League I’m in second place. In Tout Wars I’m in next to last. In XFL we’re in fourth or fifth, depending on the day. But this morning I find these sporting pictures delightful!

“Hand-made Trophies Worth Bragging About”

Today I stumbled on an ad for Dave Mitri’s fantasy trophies on Rotowire, which I guess means they’re doing okay. I wrote them up last summer, in large part because I live around the corner from Dave and his wife Suzy, and also because the sculptures made me laugh.

They made me laugh again today, and I got to read this page about how the trophies are made, which is pretty impressive.

“Hand-made Trophies Worth Bragging About” | “Hand-made Trophies Worth Bragging About”

Awesome Fantasy Football Trophy

The trophy we have in the American Dream League is your standard high school sports varsity participation trophy, except the golden posed player on top has been replaced by a 1940s era dial up phone. Similarly electroplated. It is an awesome thing, unique in every sense of the world, and fragile. One year the preceding year’s winner (winners keep the trophy until a new champion is crowned) delivered the trophy in a bag. Somehow the screws and bolts came undone and he just wasn’t handy enough to fix it. He hasn’t won since, though he’s in the lead this year (by a lot).

Trophies mean something, and these clever and handsome items are the work of a friend of a friend in my home town of Brooklyn, NY. The Throwback, picture above, made me laugh out loud when I saw it, which makes it a fit prize for the fantasy winner in your league this year. And it doesn’t look like it has any screws or bolts.

The Baseball Project

Yep Roc Records Artist Info

Back when I was a boy I spent a dusky night or two at Gerdes Folk City in NY’s Greenwich Village, in its dying days, totally crazy for a LA band called the Dream Syndicate. (I also saw there an amazing Levon Helm/Rick Danko show that I count among the best I ever saw anywhere.) Folk City had once been a hangout of the nascent Bob Dylan, who among other things went on to write a song about Catfish Hunter, and who also wrote about his love for baseball in Chronicle. (Dylan has been touring in recent summers in minor league baseball parks, though I’m not sure he’s been taking in many games.)

The Baseball Project cover

About this same time I was also a little crazy for Jonathan Richman (wait, I still am), who was famous then for his awesome band the Modern Lovers, but who ended up being known most famously as the troubadour in the excellent hair-gel movie There’s Something About Mary. Jonathan, back in the old days, wrote an amazing song about Walter Johnson, and some other baseball songs as well.

So now, Steve Wynn, the lead guy of the Dream Syndicate, has made an album of baseball songs that have the same love for the game that Dylan and Richman have shown before. Wynn has a partner who I don’t know, so consider the credit shared, but these are rock songs about baseball in every good sense of the phrase.

Illustrative song title: “Ted Fucking Williams.”

Geek’s love: “Harvey Haddix,” which makes the case that losing a perfect game in the 13th inning shouldn’t have cost Harvey his status as a no-hitter pitcher.

There’s also a song about Curt Flood and the reserve clause! Sexy! And rockin’.

I’ve only listened once, but I like these songs, and I like these people. Play ball!

I bought the Baseball Project LP at, by the way, which is a pretty good service for finding mp3 songs in a wide range of genres for a pretty fair price.

When the Beatles were, um, young!

John has a feverFlickr: teddychamps Photostream

Incredibly odd and oddly engaging series of drawings of the Beatles, together or alone, doing everyday yet odd things. Like carrying around a bunch of dolls or taking John’s temperature because he apparently isn’t feeling well or, well, you have to see them for yourself.