Just a few random items today while I patiently wait for some Tigers starter to get through a couple of innings without walking multiple batters or piling up exorbitant pitch counts:
Geoff Young, who has been writing his San Diego Padres themed Ducksnorts since before blogs were called blogs, has published his annual Ducksnorts book. It's a book about the Padres but I have read his three annuals and have come away each time learning something new about the game. Geoff is an excellent writer who has the ability to analyze the game and tell an entertaining story at the same time. Among other things, this year's book includes an extensive Padres farm report, a review of the inaugural Padres 1969 season, research on pitcher run support and an essay on the relationship between fans, management and media.
Over at Sully Baseball, Paul Sullivan includes two Tigers all-star teams - the all time home grown team and the all-time acquired team. You may or may not agree with all his selections but it's a good read either way.
And one more item from the Fielding Bible: In the final section of the book, they rank position players on the aggregate of everything they did in 2008 including hitting, fielding and base running. They determined how many runs each player was worth according to batting runs created, base running runs using linear weights and defensive runs. The top Tiger in 2008 was Placido Polanco. They credited him with 126 runs - 83 with his bat, 38 with his glove, and 5 with base running. That was good for 30th in the majors.
Polanco was followed by Curtis Granderson who was responsible for 125 runs (99 batting, 17 fielding and 9 base running). Miguel Cabrera (108) and Magglio Ordonez (101) created more runs offensively than Polanco but were dragged down by sub-par fielding and base running.