Hello everyone, happy week-between-Christmas-and-New-Year's! My big news this holiday season is that I proposed to my girlfriend last Sunday, and my girlfriend's answer (yes) was as predictable as a Twins free agent signing being a pitch-to-contact guy.
Being engaged has new responsibilities, and my first challenge is helping my future brother-in-law move from his condo to his brand new house with his wife. Cross your fingers that I don't strain an oblique attempting to carry his couch out to the U-Haul.
- One of my favorite things about baseball is all the goofy, amazing, unbelievable things that can happen in a game, and our own SB Nation's Baseball Nation has collected their favorite GIFs of 2012. They've collected such gems as "Baseballs Shouldn't Do That," "Funny Faces," and "Unnecessary Movements," and they just keep on going (up to 11 posts right now and I assume they're going to keep going). If you want to waste half an afternoon watching Baltimore's Chris Davis striking out (then) Boston's Adrian Gonzalez, here's your place.
- This is a year in which we are "treated" (depending on which team you root for) to new batting practice caps, and ESPN's Uni Watch has the details. There are some real gems in there, such as Oakland returning to the elephant on their BP cap and Tampa Bay finally adding a sunburst to their cap, and then there's a great misstep with Atlanta as they brought back the screaming Indian. Oops.
Chipper Jones is retired and he's learning some things about the easy life. First, you may miss the game of baseball, but you have to be strong and not make the mistake of coming back when your time has already passed. Second, you really should use a sawhorse instead of a stepladder when building your new basketball hoop. Exhibit A, via Twitter. It's okay, Chipper, you could have done worse.
- Have you ever seriously paid attention to the "keys to the game" provided at the beginning of a baseball game for pitchers? They often contain some ridiculous bullet points, when read out of context seem really elementary (hell, even when context is given, they're still ridiculously simple). Sam Miller of Baseball Prospectus assembled some of these together to demonstrate that using this advice, even you can become a top-notch pitcher. My favorite is the very first one in the article, which is one of Philip Humber's keys to pitching: "Win?"
- Finally, Baseball America put together a list of the top 50 baseball-related accounts to follow on Twitter. Minnesota's own Aaron Gleeman makes the list, and it also includes great follows like Old Hoss Radbourn, Brandon McCarthy, and Dirk Hayhurst. Just so you know, the list is arranged alphabetically, so don't freak out when you see Radbourn listed at #37. However, I do have to wonder that after hearing all these complaints about Darren Rovell (not even a full-time baseball reporter/writer), he managed to make this list...