Sunday, July 14, 2013

Everyone is Now Dumber for Having Listened

I don't think I've ever done this before. So, I'll get on the soapbox without apology, as I have to vent at the stubborn establishment of baseball media. Put me in the group of those fed up with these statistics that so-and-so is setting a record for most whatever-stat before the All-Star break. Any baseball fan in search for the truth knows this year's All-Star Game is a week later than in year's past. Look at Chris Davis. His 37 home runs are the second most all time before the break, trailing Barry Bonds, who hit 39 in the first half of 2001. Chris Davis has played 95 games this year, 14 more games than Bonds played in the first half of 2001. What's the point of celebrating these worthless "records"?

Aside from this minuscule pet peeve, there is way too much bad information propagated by Mitch Williams, Hawk Harrelson, and other neanderthal, closed-minded good ol' boys. For example, each weekday on a TV show called MLB Now, Brian Kenny is the voice of reason in the face of Harold Reynolds's arguments against proven sabermetric facts. Case in point: on Friday, Reynolds was arguing that Zack Cozart, and his .263 On-Base Percentage, is the best #2 hitter for the Reds' lineup. What's worse is that a majority of fans on social media actually thought he was correct. We won't get into it now, but Harold Reynolds was wrong. The value of "taking pitches" and "productive outs" falls short of the value of actually making fewer outs.

In time, people with an enlightened perspective will reach the masses on mainstream media. I'm not sure how quickly, but eventually it'll get there. Of course, there are wonderful baseball blogs out there, like the brilliant stuff we find at Baseball Think Factory. The problem is that fans need to seek that out, while the mainstream media lags behind. At least there are signs of progress. Jay Jaffe is making a destination. Rany Jazayerli is on Grantland. Lastly, we'll all be better off when Joe Posnanski gets back from vacation.

It's as if MLB Network executives don't watch their own channel.

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