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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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.

Friday (Another interesting social media day for Sam Ponder) edition: Wha' Happened?

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 25th at 12:31pm 268601742

Christian Ponder and his wife, Samantha, shared with the world a picture of their daughter, Bowden Sainte-Claire, via Instagram the other day. They largely escaped the court of public opinion unscathed, save for folks who couldn’t resist taking pot-shots at Ponder’s QBing or their choice for a baby name.

Friday is a new day, as they say, and Sam Ponder turned the page by offering up a tweet late last evening that said this:

She has a point, of course, and a good one at that. While having a sports web site or constantly supporting a sports web site filled with “hottest women in sports” slide shows or “lovely ladies of the day” does not mean you participate in or condone physical abuse of women, it is certainly part of a culture of objectification and at best diminishes your authority on any hot takes about abuse and at worst contributes to a collective way of thought that makes abuse possible.

You can imagine, though, the Twitter replies mostly did not agree. You can read them for yourself, and we won’t pretend to be the morality police here, but we dare say the majority of them reinforce the very point Ponder was making.

Some of the challenges to her point were thoughtful and enhanced the discussion.

The one in which she was asked to fix someone a sandwich before being called a degrading word … that did not enhance the discussion.

TFD: Josmil Pinto was a much better Twins DH than Kendrys Morales

Posted by: Michael Rand Updated July 24th at 5:14pm 268514932

When the Twins acquired Kendrys Morales in early June, most of us figured two things: 1) it was probably a rental and 2) in spite of that, it was worth the money and gamble because he would probably help out a stagnant offense.

As part of that, Josmil Pinto, who had been getting at-bats as DH, was shipped back to the minors to work on his catching. That’s a good thing. But as it turns out, the Twins missed Pinto’s bat. And that’s a bad thing.

Morales was traded to the Mariners today, as you probably knew. Here are the comps between he and Pinto this season with the Twins:

Morales: 162 ABs, .234 BA/.259 OBP/.325 slugging, 1 HR, 18 RBI.

Pinto: 158 ABs, .222/.323/.407, 7 HRs, 16 RBI.

It’s not as though Pinto was lighting the world on fire, but his 7 home runs are still tied for third-most on the team. Morales was a rental, but an unproductive one. He slugged .325; Nick Punto, in his Twins career, slugged .324.

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Chicago WSox 3 Top 4th Inning
Detroit 4
Colorado 0 Bottom 1st Inning
Chicago Cubs 0
St. Louis - S. Miller 2:40 PM
San Diego - O. Despaigne
Philadelphia - C. Lee 6:05 PM
Washington - G. Gonzalez
LA Angels - T. Skaggs 6:05 PM
Baltimore - B. Norris
Seattle - C. Young 6:05 PM
Cleveland - Z. McAllister
Cincinnati - J. Cueto 6:10 PM
Miami - T. Koehler
Minnesota - K. Correia 7:10 PM
Kansas City - Y. Ventura
Toronto - D. Hutchison 7:10 PM
Houston - J. Cosart
Pittsburgh - J. Locke 8:40 PM
Arizona - J. Collmenter
Atlanta - J. Teheran 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - C. Kershaw
NY Giants 8/3/14 7:00 PM
Buffalo
Winnipeg 6:00 PM
Hamilton
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Montreal
Brt Columbia 8/1/14 9:00 PM
Calgary
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Ottawa
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Winnipeg
Edmonton 8/8/14 6:00 PM
Montreal
Hamilton 8/8/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 8/9/14 6:30 PM
Calgary
Atlanta 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Phoenix 7:00 PM
Minnesota
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Chicago
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