RandBall

Michael Rand started RandBall with hopes that he could convince the world to love jumpsuits as much as he does. So far, he's only succeeded in using the word "redacted" a lot. He welcomes suggestions, news tips, links of pure genius, and pictures of pets in Halloween costumes here, though he already knows he will regret that last part.

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TFD: The Wolves have a new point guard. What does it (probably) mean?

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 28th at 6:33pm 268954841

mowilliamsThe Wolves on Monday signed 31-year-old Mo Williams to a one-year contract reportedly worth $3.75 million. Williams is a combo guard, but mostly a point guard at 6-foot-1. What does this move mean? Let’s take a stab at it:

*It likely means J.J. Barea’s days in Minnesota are done. Barea has one year left on his contract, and there is absolutely no sense in having Ricky Rubio, Barea and Williams on the roster. While Alexey Shved’s roster spot could also be in jeopardy, this move in particular appears to impact Barea the most. It would be amusing if Barea winds up as part of a Kevin Love trade and follows him to Cleveland, seeing as how the two had a public flareup last season.

*Speaking of a potential Love trade, this would seem to indicate the Wolves know that Barea will be a part of it — whether he winds up in Cleveland to stay is another question — since they would not sign Williams if they didn’t have a way out with Barea. Would they? Please tell us they wouldn’t. This isn’t David Kahn’s Point Guard Central anymore.

*This means the Wolves now have a player who, at age 26, was the second-best player on a LeBron-led Cavs team that lost in the Eastern Conference finals. In other words, he was six years ago what Love will be in 2014-15 (cheap shot alert).

*This means the Wolves have a backup point guard who should be able to capably and reliably run the second unit. And he’s a career 38.5 percent three-percent shooter, a nice boost.

*It also means the Wolves acquired a player who is on his fifth team in six years. That can happen for a variety of reasons, but it is notable.

*It will be interesting to see, assuming Williams and Rubio are healthy, who plays the bulk of the fourth-quarter minutes. Those often went to Barea last year, and the results can politely be described as mixed.

*It means tattoos. So many tattoos.

Peyton Manning dances? Peyton Manning dances

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 28th at 6:36pm 268928211

We don’t care if they knew the cameras were rolling and had a pretty good idea that this would be an Internet sensation. Sometimes even the preconceived viral videos work out for the best.

Submitted: Peyton Manning and (to a lesser extent) Wes Welker dancing to “Rocky Top,” the Tennessee fight song, via 9News in Colorado:

Monday (Twins with and without Mauer) edition: Wha' Happened?

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 28th at 10:07am 268890711

mauertossA very basic stat for your Monday morning, since we were curious about it and decided to delve into it:

Since 2011, also know as the beginning of the end for the Twins, there have been 182 games in which Joe Mauer has not started (regardless of whether he was playing catcher, DH or first base).

There have been 408 games in which he has started. The Twins’ records, year-by-year and cumulatively, games he has started and not started are as follows:

2011: Started — 31-47 /// Not started — 32-52

2012: Started — 57-87 /// Not started — 9-9

2013: Started — 49-61 /// Not started — 17-35

2014: Started — 36-40 /// Not started — 11-17

Total: Started — 173-235 /// Not started — 69-113

The winning percentage in games Mauer has started is .424, and in games he has not started it’s .379. Over the course of a full season, that’s the difference between about a 68-win team and a 61-win team.

Surely there are many more factors than that, but it is a large enough sample size to draw a conclusion that we inherently already knew: the Twins miss Mauer when he’s not in the lineup, even if he is struggling like he was for much of this season, and his absences have certainly contributed to making a bad team even worse.

TFD: Ryan Raburn might have made the worst fielding play of all time

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 25th at 5:03pm 268657772

Ryan Raburn, you guys. This was not a good play. In fact, you could say it is one of the worst plays we have ever seen. The only thing that would have made it worse/better is if the 1-0 score had held up. Alas, Kansas City did win in extra innings, at least.

raburnTHREWITONTHEGROUND

A decade ago, a Love/Wiggins deal would pretty much be dead

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 25th at 9:11pm 268619952

wigginsAnyone frustrated by the NBA rule that says draft picks can’t be traded for 30 days after they sign — and count us among those, since we’re eager to see a Kevin Love/Andrew Wiggins deal and move on with our lives — should note that it could be worse.

A decade ago, this deal would pretty much be dead — and not because Love was 15 and Wiggins was 9, though we suppose that would pretty much kill any NBA deal as well.

We found this nugget from a Cleveland AP story interesting:

There have been restrictions placed on trading newly signed rookies dating back at least to the 1998-99 collective bargaining agreement. At that time, rookies were lumped in with all free agents into a rule that prevents any newly signed player from being traded for three months or before Dec. 15 of the next season – whichever is longer.

The rule was modified in the 2005 CBA, separating rookie contracts into a different category with the shorter, 30-day timeline between signing date and trade eligibility.

In the case of Wiggins, Dec. 15 would have been the date in question, or about 45 days into the NBA season. In other words, no deal, since it appears his salary being on the books is important to making this trade happen and his salary is only on the books now that he has signed.

What’s the point of the rule, anyway? Why can’t teams just trade players, including rookies, whenever they please?

It was designed to prevent teams from circumventing salary cap rules.  … The spirit behind the rule is that if a rookie is traded immediately after he signs, it gives the appearance that the acquiring team is the one that is in fact signing him.

That doesn’t make a ton of sense to us, but then again the NBA collective bargaining agreement is a tangled web from which few people escape fully unscathed.

Just be happy, we suppose, that a trade is still possible, even if it will take until the end of August to be official.

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San Diego - LP: J. Lane 0 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: E. Santana 2
Washington - LP: R. Soriano 6 FINAL
Miami - WP: M. Dunn 7
Philadelphia - LP: A. Burnett 1 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: B. Colon 7
Milwaukee - LP: K. Lohse 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: J. Odorizzi 2
Toronto - WP: R. Dickey 14 FINAL
Boston - LP: C. Buchholz 1
Arizona 1 Top 13th Inning
Cincinnati 1
Colorado 1 Bottom 8th Inning
Chicago Cubs 3
NY Yankees 2 Top 8th Inning
Texas 4
Oakland 3 Bottom 8th Inning
Houston 7
Pittsburgh 4 Bottom 1st Inning
San Francisco 0
NY Giants 8/3/14 7:00 PM
Buffalo
Los Angeles 2 1st Half 15:00
Seattle 0
Calgary 26 FINAL
Edmonton 22
Winnipeg 23 FINAL
Brt Columbia 6
Ottawa 23 FINAL
Hamilton 33
Toronto 9 FINAL
Saskatchewan 37
Indiana 0 1st Qtr 10:00
Los Angeles 0

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