First off, I have to thank Rob Neyer over at ESPN for his kind words about the blog today. It’s always nice to be recognized by other bloggers/writers/etc., but when it comes from someone as respected as Rob, it feels even more gratifying. Thanks, Rob. I’ll try to keep putting interesting posts up. (And thanks to The Common Man for his kind words today, too. Don’t think I’m playing favorites here!)
Now, for those of us interested in the actual playing of the game of baseball, rather than the utterly ridiculous number of scandals that seem to have hit in the last couple of days, this week is actually quite exciting. Pitchers and catchers are reporting!
Not only does that mean that we can actually start focusing on the teams and the players and their performances, but it also means that all of the preseason predictions and previews are coming out. It’s started online already, with the Projected Standings from the folks over at Baseball Prospectus. In the stores, it started last week when the Sporting News Baseball Yearbook hit the shelves, and continued this week when the Athlon Baseball Annual was finally published.
I picked up the TSN and Athlon guides as soon as I saw them. I also picked up the Lindy’s Preview Guide. I’ve been getting the TSN & Athlon guides every spring for the last 10 years or so now, and the baseball season never truly seems to start until I get those. This is only the second year that I’ve picked up the Lindy’s, and I’m not sure how much I like it. It tries to blend the fantasy and non-fantasy aspects a little too much. Still, it’s a lot better than the pure fantasy guides – those just don’t focus on the baseball season in the way that I like. I can’t wait to add these magazines to my preview guide inventory and database and see what I can find out.
With the official start of the baseball season finally here, I feel I need to do something special. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be doing a team-by-team preview of the major leagues. But, since I don’t know much about most of these teams, I’ll be utilizing the three preview guides (or more, if I find anymore out there) and making a combined preview for each team. What does this mean exactly, and how will it look? We’ll have to see, but I think it should come out pretty well.
Starting next week, then, you can expect to find a new team preview everyday until all 30 teams are covered. I’m excited about this. Meanwhile, you can also expect to find more regular articles here and there, like Through the Years or Historic Hot Stove. I hope you all enjoy them.