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January 10, 2013

BP Daily Podcast

Effectively Wild Episode 116: Has the Sabermetric Movement Helped or Hurt Jack Morris?

Ben and Sam try to figure out whether the sabermetric movement has helped keep Jack Morris out of the Hall of Fame or given him a better chance to get in.



Ben and Sam try to figure out whether the sabermetric movement has helped keep Jack Morris out of the Hall of Fame or given him a better chance to get in.

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January 9, 2013

BP Fantasy Podcast

Episode 28: I Wanna Mock

Jason and Paul discuss the latest news in baseball, mock drafts and what to do with ADP, and welcome special guest Ron Shandler of BaseballHQ to the show.

 

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BP Unfiltered

Daily Draft Video: Hunter Martin

Daily exclusive video series designed to familiarize you with the names you need to know leading up to the 2013 amateur draft.

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Wezen-Ball

Through the Years: Jack Morris

Looking at the controversial Hall of Fame candidate through contemporary accounts from his early career.

With the Hall of Fame announcement scheduled for this week, now is a good time to look back at the early careers of some of this year's most talked-about nominees. (And with the early exit polls looking as they do, it might be nice to remember just how great some of these players were.)

Jack Morris, longtime anchor of the Detroit Tigers pitching staff, winningest pitcher of the 1980s, and author of one of the most memorable World Series games of all-time, is now in his fourteenth year on the Hall of Fame ballot. Only three years ago, Morris was barely receiving 53% of the vote. Five years ago, it was merely 44%. Today, however, he sits on the verge of election, receiving 67% in the 2012 voting and returning to the ballot as the lead vote-getter. To be honest, the arguments over Morris's Hall worthiness have gone on so long now that it feels nearly impossible to even remember what he was like as a player. For both sides of the debate, "Jack Morris" has turned into a stone idol, representing all that is beautiful and romantic of old-school baseball on one side and all that is vile and oppressive of outdated thinking on the other. His year-to-year and day-to-day strengths and weaknesses have been mostly forgotten or ignored, except when useful in proving a point. Morris, more than any other candidate on the Hall of Fame ballot, may benefit most from a look back at contemporary accounts of his early career.

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BP Daily Podcast

Effectively Wild Episode 115: The Alternate-History Hall of Fame/Are NL Teams Stockpiling Position Players for Interleague Play?/Is 162 Games Too Many?/Preserving Parity

Ben and Sam answer listener emails about the Hall of Fame, preparing for interleague play, the 162-game schedule, and methods of preserving parity.



Ben and Sam answer listener emails about the Hall of Fame, preparing for interleague play, the 162-game schedule, and methods of preserving parity.

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Minor League Update

Rosters/Depth Chart Mailbag

Rosters/Depth Chart Mailbag

I've pretty much covered everything I'm going to cover around the Caribbean Winter Leagues, so I'm calling it quits on that particular format until spring training. For now, I'm leaving future topics up to the readers. Feel free to send over any questions related to rosters, depth charts, prospect ETA's, or playing time projections, and I'll answer them in a future mailbag. You can ask the questions below in the comments section, send me a tweet @mlbdepthcharts, or email me at mlbdepthcharts@gmail.com

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January 8, 2013

BP Unfiltered

Is Jack Morris the Best Pitcher of an Era?

You already know the answer to this.

It's Hall of Fame balloting time, and you know what that means: it's also time to bicker about Jack Morris. The setup: Danny Knobler's ballot justification, though I could pick plenty of others that say more or less the same thing.

I've long been a supporter. I understand the arguments against. But he was the dominant starting pitcher of his era. We've never elected a pitcher who spent his entire career in the American League during the DH era. Morris deserves to be the first.

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Wezen-Ball

Through the Years: Craig Biggio

A look at contemporary accounts for a man Bill James called "the best player in major league baseball."

With the Hall of Fame announcement scheduled for this week, now is a good time to look back at the early careers of some of this year's most talked-about nominees. (And with the early exit polls looking as they do, it might be nice to remember just how great some of these players were.) This post was originally written (mostly) in 2009.

Biggio's first appearance in any of the annual preview guides comes in the Minor Leagues section of the 1988 Street & Smith's. It is a rather underwhelming first mention and the (likely) typo in his first name is fitting for the most underrated star of his time:

"Catcher Graig Biggio [sic], the Astros' No. 1 draft pick in '87, hit .375 with 49 RBIs and 31 SBs in 64 games at Asheville."

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