Joe Posnanski: your new Senior Writer for SI (Not No More, He Ain't)

drleather2001

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I went to Yankee Stadium in 2003/2004 and, after an inning where the Yankees scored a couple of runs on a HR but with the Red Sox still winning, I got up between innings to go get a beer and take a piss. A Yankees fan stood up in front of me on the stairs and put his arms up to shoulder height and said "What? WHAT? What now?!" I said I was going to take a piss, that's whats now. He said "Yankees Home Run fucker! What now?!" I was confused, looked around, and said "Wait...the Red Sox are still winning, so...?" He sat down and called me a motherfucker under his breath.

The lesson, of course, is that Yankees fans are subhuman and haven't yet discovered basic logic.
 

edoug

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I went to Yankee Stadium in 2003/2004 and, after an inning where the Yankees scored a couple of runs on a HR but with the Red Sox still winning, I got up between innings to go get a beer and take a piss. A Yankees fan stood up in front of me on the stairs and put his arms up to shoulder height and said "What? WHAT? What now?!" I said I was going to take a piss, that's whats now. He said "Yankees Home Run fucker! What now?!" I was confused, looked around, and said "Wait...the Red Sox are still winning, so...?" He sat down and called me a motherfucker under his breath.

The lesson, of course, is that Yankees fans are subhuman and haven't yet discovered basic logic.
You invented "Look at the scoreboard"
 

Spelunker

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I went to Yankee Stadium in 2003/2004 and, after an inning where the Yankees scored a couple of runs on a HR but with the Red Sox still winning, I got up between innings to go get a beer and take a piss. A Yankees fan stood up in front of me on the stairs and put his arms up to shoulder height and said "What? WHAT? What now?!" I said I was going to take a piss, that's whats now. He said "Yankees Home Run fucker! What now?!" I was confused, looked around, and said "Wait...the Red Sox are still winning, so...?" He sat down and called me a motherfucker under his breath.

The lesson, of course, is that Yankees fans are subhuman and haven't yet discovered basic logic.
Sadly, this is the parable that teaches us that they're not just Yankee's fans... They're *them*.
 

ConigliarosPotential

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From Joe's blog:
Well, I made it to Rio. I would say the city is approximately 63% ready for the Olympics, but that's an early estimate. And they do have four more days.

I think I mentioned in the last post that I was working on one of the most emotional stories of my life as a writer. It is up now at NBC Olympics. I don't think there's much to say about it except that it is about an Olympic swimmer named Kathleen Baker, her battle with Crohn's Disease, and the effect it has had on my family's life.
Full URL of the story is http://www.nbcolympics.com/news/joe-posnanski-kathleen-bakers-crohns-disease-isnt-curse
 

Hildy

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Watching a young friend and her family deal with the same diagnosis; it is amazing how unerringly he chose the details that punch home the pain and confusion of this diagnosis.
 
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Papelbon's Poutine

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Disappointed we have t gotten anything from him since the games started. His articles from London were fantastic. The Olympics play to his strengths, the boy wonderment of it all, etc. hoping for some good stuff this week.
 

Mooch

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Last week's Poscast with Kenny T where they drafted the alphabet made me laugh harder than any "comedy" podcast has in a long time. Really played the absurdity of drafting things to a whole new level, right down to Pos's explanation of trading down in the first round to avoid a certain (overrated) letter. Kind of Seinfeldian at certain points in terms of the utter silliness of the whole endeavor but with an alarming amount of thought put into the explanations behind the choices. Well done, Joe and Michael.
 

ConigliarosPotential

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Embedded in this very fine column about Terry Francona...

http://joeposnanski.com/tito/

...is possibly the best comparison/contrast of the core difference between regular season baseball and postseason baseball I've read:
But what Tito gets — and what a surprising number of managers do not — is that while regular season managing is about balance and trust and (some) strategy and relationships and keeping everyone loose and (mostly) talent, the postseason is something else entirely. I once talked to Tito about regular season managing, and he told a story about how his friend, former Patriots and Chiefs GM Scott Pioli, wandered into the clubhouse in June or July and was annoyed by the loud music and how relaxed everyone looked. Where was the hunger? Where were the game faces?

“I have to tell him all the time, ‘Scott, we play 162 of these things,'” Tito said. “It’s different in football, where they play one game a week and it is, like sacred. We do this every day. And if we put too much emphasis on one game, if we have too many team meetings, if we get up for every game the way they do in football, it’s not going to work.”

That’s a perfect summation of regular season managing. To be a successful regular season manager — and it’s a hard one — is to guide a team through the long season, to shorten funks, to ride the good waves as long as you can, to play the long game, to energize and relax players, to stifle problems before they become too large to handle. If you manage a baseball team like a football team, you won’t make it out of April.

But the postseason — that IS football. Every game is sacred. You get up for every game. One loss is devastating. It’s no wonder that so many managers, even fabulous regular season managers, do not know how to turn on that postseason switch. Buck Showalter is one of the best regular season managers ever. But even now he seems to believe that not pitching his best pitcher, Zach Britton, in a one-game extra-inning playoff loss was the right strategic move. Over a long season, maybe there are sound reasons for that decision. In a win-or-go-home scenario, it’s utterly inexplicable.

The truth is, though, that few managers can turn up the volume for the postseason. It’s just not in their nature. Joe Torre did. Bobby Cox could not. There are more Bobby Coxes out there than Joe Torres.
 

PC Drunken Friar

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Not sure if this should go in the Pos thread or this one, so I will put it in both...
Joe Posnanski is counting backward thru his HoF ballot, from least deserving to most deserving. Of course, he will never finish it, which is why he started from the bottom, to get some guys stories out there. So far, so good. This is right up Pos' wheelhouse.

The first two are up, Arthur Rhodes (what a strange and awesome career) and Matt Stairs. Well worth reading.

http://joeposnanski.com/no-34-arthur-rhodes/

http://joeposnanski.com/ballot-33-matt-stairs/
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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The Matt Stairs piece is great.

Actually the Rhodes piece is pretty awesome too. I love this stuff. This is why the World Wide Web was invented.
 

Bergs

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Not sure if this should go in the Pos thread or this one, so I will put it in both...
Joe Posnanski is counting backward thru his HoF ballot, from least deserving to most deserving. Of course, he will never finish it, which is why he started from the bottom, to get some guys stories out there. So far, so good. This is right up Pos' wheelhouse.

The first two are up, Arthur Rhodes (what a strange and awesome career) and Matt Stairs. Well worth reading.

http://joeposnanski.com/no-34-arthur-rhodes/

http://joeposnanski.com/ballot-33-matt-stairs/
Pos is just the best. As an aside, this was the first I've heard about the Houdini book. Hopefully, no child rape cover-ups pop up while he's writing it.
 

drleather2001

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Yeah, I really liked that Matt Stairs bit.

Although, I do have to wonder (unfortunately), given the era, whether or not PEDs might have been a factor. I guess I credit Pos for ignoring it.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Although, I do have to wonder (unfortunately), given the era, whether or not PEDs might have been a factor. I guess I credit Pos for ignoring it.
At this point, for me at least, I assume that just about everyone was on PEDs at some point in their career and I'm okay with it. Matt Stairs took a drug, mashed a bunch of homers, made some money, won a World Series ring and is retired. If he did do PEDs, at the end of the day, who did he really hurt (aside from maybe himself)?

We understand the era. We know that even though he has the same numbers as Reggie Jackson and hit more dingers than Robin Yount or Paul Molitor, Stairs wasn't a better ball player than any of them.
 

drleather2001

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Yeah, I mean it's almost like an algebra problem when you're balancing equations, and you divide them both by the same number to solve for x, with "the number" being "PEDs", because everyone was on them so you can just factor it out of the comparative equation.

Or something.
 

Spacemans Bong

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I remember somebody saying about Carlton Fisk that being a player that good from a small northern New England town was amazing. So much snow, so few games during the season.

Matt Stairs is from Fredericton, New Brunswick. So times that by a thousand.
 

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Fishercat

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I was a big Matt Stairs fan through his entire career. I went to a Royals/Red Sox game with my step dad in one of our handful of really good memories to see Jeff Suppan's MLB debut. I remember that Matt (and several other players) took some time out to sign and talk with fans pre-game while Bob Hamelin snubbed us. Gave me a lot of pleasure to see Stairs really solid career over the years and to see Hamelin flame out. Heck, I have a grainy clip of Stairs' NLCS home run on demand in case I ever need a smile. Loved the article.

I've always thought one of the good "what-if" thought pieces is Stairs. Joe (cribbed from Bill James) had a nice little precursor to this piece in an older blog of his

http://thesoulofbaseball.blogspot.com/2007/04/hall-of-could-have-been.html

Matt Stairs

Might be in the Hall of Fame if: I'll let Bill explain.

"Look at it. Somebody decided he was a second baseman, he tears through the minor leagues, gets to Montreal, the Expos take one look at him and say, 'He's no second baseman, get real.' He bounces around, goes to Japan, doesn't really get to play until he's almost 30, then hits 38 homers, slips into a part-time role and hits 15-20 homers every year for 10 years in about 250 at-bats a season. ... You put him in the right park, right position early in his career ... he's going to hit a LOT of bombs."

What can you say? It's all there. Stairs did not get 500 at-bats until he was 30 -- he had a .370 OBP that year, hit 26 homers, drove in 106. The next year, he had the 38-homer season. His average dropped the next season, and he never got 500 at-bats in a season after that.
 

lefty13

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Just dropped in to say the latest Poscast draft with Ken Tremendous had me laughing like a maniac. (They draft things that they hate, which everyone else likes.) Mike Schur is at his funniest when ranting against stupid things.
 

mcpickl

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When was it recorded? He disappeared from Twitter--I was wondering if he was dead or something.
They do two podcasts every week.

Schur going off on convertibles this week was incredible.

Easily the most inane podcast I listen to, and it's always hilarious. Even the commercial reads are great.
 

ConigliarosPotential

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Not sure if this should go in the Pos thread or this one, so I will put it in both...
Joe Posnanski is counting backward thru his HoF ballot, from least deserving to most deserving. Of course, he will never finish it, which is why he started from the bottom, to get some guys stories out there. So far, so good. This is right up Pos' wheelhouse.

The first two are up, Arthur Rhodes (what a strange and awesome career) and Matt Stairs. Well worth reading.

http://joeposnanski.com/no-34-arthur-rhodes/

http://joeposnanski.com/ballot-33-matt-stairs/
Number 23: Tim Wakefield.

http://joeposnanski.com/ballot-23-tim-wakefield/

Worth your reading time.
 

JimD

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It doesn't sound like he's going to another network-affiliated site or back to SI. My guess is MLB.com.
 

LogansDad

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Elizabeth is in high school now, which means that I have failed as a father. If I had succeeded, she would have stayed 10 years old like I kept telling her, and she wouldn’t be taking physics classes beyond my comprehension, wouldn’t be driving my car on her permit license and sure as heck would never talk about boys. To be fair, she doesn’t talk about boys with me in the room even now because that would be the death of me. But I hear things
Shit....as the father of an 11 year old boy and 9 year old girl.... now I'm depressed. And that's the first paragraph....
 

JimD

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It's even more emotional to read if you've been following his past accounts of his daughters growing up in pieces like 'Katie the Prefect' and others.
 

JimD

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New podcast up with Ken Tremendous - talking 2017 baseball HOF candidates.
 

johnmd20

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On the Podcast, Bagwell, Schilling, Clemens, and Bonds were hilarious. NO, OF COURSE NOT. He may or may not have done a thing that baseball tacitly encouraged him to do.
 

JimD

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His piece on voting for either Manny or Vlad is excellent.

Posnanski can really write.
Loved this:

Baseball is, of course, filled with terrific hitters who did not walk. Most of them did not have the abilty to walk … they lacked the rare ability to differentiate between balls and strikes in that blink-of-an-eye time between pitcher’s release and the ball reaching the plate. They lacked the rare talent of being able to hold back when a pitch looked like a strike and then broke or dropped or rode out of the strike zone.

Well, I don’t believe that Vlad Guerrero lacked either of those talents. Frankly, I don’t think there is a hitting talent of any kind that Vlady lacked. He was a hitting savant and I’m pretty sure he had the instincts to know if a pitch was a ball or a strike, and I’m pretty sure he had the reflexes to hold back. He could have been a different hitter if he wanted.

What he lacked was the CAPACITY to hold back.

If there was a pitch thrown anywhere in Vladimir Guerrero’s solar system, he wanted to hit it. He needed to hit it. That was the fundamental character of Guerrero. See the ball. Hit the ball. Every pitch left alone was a missed moment, a flower unnoticed, a dream unremembered, a glance unreturned.
 

Spelunker

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If anyone needed confirmation that Mike Schur is a really funny dude, listen to the podcast where they draft Christmas songs. Off the cuff jokes and comments that had me rolling.

https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-poscast/e/52640067
The Poscast is one of the greatest joys you can plug into your ears. Schur was in excellent form for this one, and Brandon McCarthy is surprisingly fun (he was on last week as well, when they were drafting We Are the World singers).
 

Bunt4aTriple

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I love that Sepinwall, by all accounts, seems like a really nice guy and they are just willing him to become an asshole Yankees fan for the sole purpose of making him the target of their rants.

And agreed on McCarthy. The show is typically a hard G (which I appreciate during my Daddy Taxi duties) , so his quip about which song lyric sounded like a real "dickhead" thing to say to someone had me laughing out loud in the grocery store.