My annual prospect ranking package started to appear on ESPN.com this week for Insiders, with the farm system rankings coming in three separate parts: teams ranked 1 to 10, teams ranked 11 to 20, and teams ranked (sad trombone) 21 to 30. I held a Klawchat here on Friday, after all three parts were posted.
The top 100 itself will roll out over five days this upcoming week, 100 to 81 on Monday and 20 to 1 on Friday. I will probably chat Friday afternoon again so that you have the whole list available to you before I take your questions.
Over at Paste I reviewed the really adorable boardgame Kodama: The Tree Spirits, a great family game with a new mechanic that almost feels a little artistic.
You can preorder my upcoming book, Smart Baseball, on amazon, or from other sites via the Harper-Collins page for the book. Also, please sign up for my more-or-less weekly email newsletter, where, I kid you not, someone actually told me “you should stick to baseball” in response to the last edition, because apparently I can’t talk about whatever I want to talk about in my own fucking newsletter
Gah. The links:
- Man Boasts Of Sexual Assault, Later Inaugurated 45th President Of United States. Not The Onion.
- Journalists covering President Trump are in for a hellish experience, one where he’ll abuse and attack reporters whose coverage he dislikes, and where he’ll simply lie his way past serious questions. Best of luck. We’re all counting on you, so no pressure.
- The New York Times interviewed numerous women who voted for Donald Trump. The answers are all different, yet all horrifying – the rationalization, the economic ignorance, the invocations of the paradox of tolerance, and so on. Yet the message is fairly clear – the Democratic Party did not do a good job convincing enough voters that Trump’s policies were harmful. Either they didn’t have the right messaging, or they didn’t reach enough people, or both. But we can’t blame voters – even when they say dumb things – for not voting the way we wanted them to.
- I’m writing this as the global Women’s Marches are ongoing, and enjoyed seeing that even a small group of visitors to Antarctica are participating.
- A reader of mine wrote this humorous op ed on why Trump’s vaccine-denialist pandering angers even nice doctors.
- Longread: The Atlantic looks at Iceland has curbed substance abuse among teenagers. Quick summary – it’s complicated, and it involves parents stepping up their efforts.
- A long-running lawsuit against Cargill and Nestle over turning a blind eye to child slave labor on African chocolate plantations may finally get its day in court, and if this does nothing more than scare large chocolate manufacturers into ensuring their suppliers don’t use slaves, that would be a positive outcome.
- Actress and activist Ashley Judd gave a TED talk in October about online misogyny, and within it argued video game developers must wipe misogyny from their games and that all tech companies must fight sexism in the workplace. (The entire TED talk is embedded in both articles.)
- Everyone seemed to mock Betsy DeVos’ answer to the question about guns in schools during her confirmation hearing, but did that cause the reporting to miss just how crazy and/or unprepared she was?
- Speaking of Ms. DeVos, in this 2014 piece Jeb “Mobute” Lund looked at the 15 worst owners in sports, including the DeVos family, who own the Orlando Magic.
- A reader sent along this link on how research into turmeric’s medicinal properties was a waste of time, because the molecules within it (curcumin) that show anti-inflammatory properties on their own don’t do so within the body.
- Shake Shack has pledged to source all its chicken according to higher animal welfare standards … by 2024. I understand these things take time, so overnight promises are worthles, but seven years for a company that doesn’t even sell that much chicken? Within the piece, however, it says all the eggs they use are now from chickens raised cage-free, so at least they have a history of meeting such goals.
- I wrote my thoughts on season 4 of Sherlock earlier in the week, but EW interviewed showrunner Stephen Moffatt about the season and the finale as well, and he offered some truly cringeworthy comments on the Molly sequence in that last episode.
- The national soccer team from Timor-Leste was kicked out of the Asian Cup for using Brazilian players with fake documents.
- I love a good strategy boardgame, but this five-hour, £175 game now on Kickstarter is beyond my tolerance for the genre.