Author Archive

Effectively Wild Episode 1522: Booking It

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller talk to Brad Balukjian, author of brand-new baseball book The Wax Pack: On the Open Road in Search of Baseball’s Afterlife, about the long road (figuratively and literally) that led to the book, how he decided to try to track down the players from an old pack of baseball cards, his favorite encounter with one of the pack’s former major leaguers, and what he learned about life from his journey, then try to predict which active major leaguers are most likely to end up in various post-playing professions. Lastly (49:06), Ben talks to Rob Taylor, senior acquisitions editor at the University of Nebraska Press (which published The Wax Pack), about how UNP became a baseball publishing powerhouse, the economics of baseball books, and how to get a baseball book deal.

Audio intro: The Baseball Project, "The Baseball Card Song"
Audio interstitial: Ezra Furman, "Good Book"
Audio outro: Moe, "Nebraska"

Link to The Wax Pack website
Link to The Wax Pack book listing
Link to Pandemic Baseball Book Club
Link to Vogelbach article
Link to Suter video
Link to Suter post
Link to Brewers Dumb and Dumber parody
Link to UNP baseball book sale page
Link to UNP history page
Link to UNP proposal format
Link to NYT article about UNP
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1521: Managers (Used to) Do the Darndest Things

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh, Sam Miller, and Meg Rowley begin by discussing the financial impact that the pandemic and the postponement of the baseball season have had on FanGraphs and requesting reader/listener assistance. Then Ben and Sam review some of the worst mistakes managers made in World Series games of the 1980s and mull over why managerial mistakes are so frustrating, how teams’ tactical decisions have improved over time, and how much managers of earlier eras cost their teams.

Audio intro: Gillian Welch, "Hard Times"
Audio outro: The Tragically Hip, "Membership"

Link to FanGraphs announcement
Link to FanGraphs membership page
Link to Ringer article about FanGraphs
Link to post on socially distanced baseball
Link to Ben on bad dugout decisions
Link to Ben on second-guessing managers
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1520: Rough Draft

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Meg Rowley banter about the benefits, uncertainties, and downsides of the deal between MLB and the MLBPA to sort out salary and service time in the event of a shortened or canceled season, whether and how a social distancing-approved version of baseball could be played while maintaining a six-foot minimum distance between players and other personnel, how a shortened season would affect the Dodgers’ return in the Mookie Betts trade, a commercial in which Johnny Bench holds seven hamburgers, and baseball jerseys being turned into gowns and masks, then (50:39) talk to FanGraphs lead prospect analyst Eric Longenhagen about the new labor agreement’s implications for domestic and international amateur players, minor leaguers, the draft, player development, and scouting, as well as his upcoming book (plus a postscript on the late Jim Wynn).

Audio intro: Sloan, "Essential Services"
Audio interstitial: Blur, "No Distance Left to Run"
Audio outro: Nada Surf, "Amateur"

Link to Rosenthal and Drellich on the MLB-MLBPA deal
Link to Jay Jaffe on the MLB-MLBPA deal
Link to Eric on the MLB-MLBPA deal
Link to Bench commercial
Link to other Bench commercials
Link to article about Fanatics masks and gowns
Link to Eric on data and player development
Link to B-Ref draft
Link to order Future Value
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1519: Fauxpening Day

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller banter about which types of old games they would want to rewatch, Noah Syndergaard’s Tommy John surgery, and how short is too short for a regular season, then answer listener emails about whether the 2020 title will be tainted by a shortened season, whether MLB should skip the regular season and go straight to the playoffs or replace the standard playoff format with an extended tournament or bracket, whether great players should be allowed to pick a team for their farewell season, and whether MLB should try seven-inning games this season, plus a Stat Blast (with a special song) about the worst player to play in both his teens and his 40s and whether young playing time or old playing time is a better predictor of a Hall of Fame induction (and a postscript about Mike Trout’s golfing).

Audio intro: Dan Bern, "Opening Day"
Audio outro: Brittany Howard, "Short and Sweet"

Link to info on Opening Day re-airings
Link to Syndergaard injury post
Link to story on Syndergaard wanting to throw harder
Link to second story on Syndergaard wanting to throw harder
Link to story on Syndergaard’s surgery
Link to Sam on every team making the playoffs
Link to EW episode about every team making the playoffs
Link to Jayson Stark on short-season experiments
Link to article on seven-inning games
Link to Stat Blast covers competition
Link to video of Trout’s drive
Link to video of Trout’s chip shot
Link to 2013 article on Trout’s golfing
Link to 2017 article on Trout’s golfing
Link to article on Trout’s hole-in-one
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1518: The Field of Dreams Debate

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller revisit Sam’s tradition of viewing the beloved and despised 1989 film Field of Dreams on the eve of Opening Day (or in this case, what would have been Opening Day) and examine how their perceptions of the movie have evolved, what makes Field of Dreams the most divisive baseball movie, the many aspects of the movie that make little sense, and its redeeming qualities.

Audio intro: James Horner, "The Place Where Dreams Come True"
Audio outro: James Horner, "End Credits"

Link to Ebert’s Field of Dreams review
Link to Goldman on Field of Dreams
Link to Calcaterra on Field of Dreams
Link to Posnanski on Field of Dreams
Link to Offerman on Field of Dreams
Link to research on the legend of Shoeless Joe
Link to research on Jackson’s attempted reinstatement
Link to research on Black Sox batting
Link to research on Weaver’s case
Link to Emma Span article
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1517: Show Minor Leaguers the Money

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Meg Rowley banter about advice for working from home, Chris Sale’s Tommy John surgery, concerns about pitcher health in a shortened season, the possibility of playing more doubleheaders when baseball comes back, how late would be too late for the season to start, the overuse, injury, and treatment of pitcher Wes Ferrell, how COVID-19 could affect MLB service time, rewatching old games and FOX Sports Detroit re-airing 2019 Tigers games, and baseball coming back in Japan and South Korea, then (39:58) talk to former minor league pitcher-turned-attorney Garrett Broshuis about the ongoing legal fight for improved pay for minor leaguers, how the pandemic has impacted minor leaguers, grassroots efforts to support temporarily unemployed players, the effect of public pressure on teams and MLB, the potential for a future minor league union, and his new organization, Advocates for Minor Leaguers (plus a postscript on two sets of same-named players).

Audio intro: Mapache, "Life on Fire"
Audio interstitial: Margo Price, "Pay Gap"
Audio outro: Smoke N Bones, "Nobody Knows"

Link to latest FG COVID-19 roundup
Link to Eno on injury spikes
Link to Pages From Baseball’s Past
Link to Wes Ferrell story
Link to article about MLB and ballpark workers
Link to article about lost service time
Link to story about re-airing Tigers games
Link to info on MLB games on YouTube
Link to FG games to rewatch, Part 1
Link to FG games to rewatch, Part 2
Link to article about doubleheaders
Link to article about baseball in Japan and South Korea
Link to Advocates for Minor Leaguers site
Link to Advocates for Minor Leaguers press release
Link to MLB press release about minor league pay
Link to ESPN article on minor league pay
Link to NYT article on Advocates for Minor Leaguers
Link to LAT article on Advocates for Minor Leaguers
Link to Adopt a Minor Leaguer
Link to More Than Baseball
Link to story on the two Mike Smiths
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1516: The Odds of an Odd Season

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller follow up on a previous discussion of advance scouting’s contribution to Kirk Gibson’s legendary 1988 home run and banter about the strangeness of not having a date for Opening Day, then answer listener emails about how to get into baseball for the first time, how a shortened season could affect future perceptions of players’ careers, whether a shortened season would create more uncertainty in the standings (and whom it would help), whether baseball would be better if the top of the order led off every inning, and the Angels’ ownage of Yusei Kikuchi, plus a Stat Blast about the history of same-named teammates.

Audio intro: Field Music, "Shorter Shorter"
Audio outro: Elliott Smith, "A Distorted Reality is Now a Necessity to Be Free"

Link to Leonard Koppett book
Link to Craig Edwards on a shortened 2019 season
Link to Dan Szymborski on shortened-season playoff odds
Link to Ben on pitcher hitting
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1515: The Waiting Game

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller banter about life during self-isolation and delayed media consumption and explore some of the long-considered and ultimately rejected article ideas in Sam’s tickler file, including Ken Griffey Jr.’s rap career, an undiscovered baseball star in Yosemite, an advance-scouting conspiracy theory, an unorthodox solution to extra-inning games, and a complaint about baseball inspired by Shel Silverstein (plus a brief baseball coronavirus update and the recommended baseball distraction of the day, about the new Statcast system and Hawk-Eye).

Audio intro: John Lennon, "Isolation"
Audio interstitial: Kid Sensation (Feat. Ken Griffey Jr.), "The Way I Swing"
Audio outro: Built to Spill, "The Wait"

Link to Timóteo video 1
Link to Timóteo video 2
Link to Timóteo video 3
Link to Statcast presentation video
Link to Statcast presentation summary
Link to Statcast presentation notes
Link to article about new Statcast physics
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1514: The Fictional Game Goes On

EWFI
In the absence of real baseball (and with plenty of solitary time on fans’ hands), Ben Lindbergh and Meg Rowley devote an episode to three new fictional depictions of baseball, speaking to novelist Emily Nemens (9:18), the author of spring training tale The Cactus League, novelist Gish Jen (36:56), the author of dystopian baseball saga The Resisters, and actor Hank Azaria (1:08:59), the star of IFC TV series Brockmire, which is about to return for its futuristic fourth and final season.

Audio intro: Belle and Sebastian, "Storytelling"
Audio interstitial 1: Lone Justice, "Cactus Rose"
Audio interstitial 2: Everclear, "Science Fiction"
Audio interstitial 3: Richard O’Brien, "Science Fiction/Double Feature"
Audio outro: The Brian Jonestown Massacre, "Let’s Pretend That it’s Summer"

Link to order The Cactus League
Link to The Cactus League review
Link to order The Resisters
Link to The Resisters review
Link to stream Brockmire Seasons 1-3
Link to stream the Brockmire Season 4 premiere
Link to Ben on Brockmire
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com


Effectively Wild Episode 1513: Opening Day Nonstarter

EWFI
Ben Lindbergh and Meg Rowley react to MLB’s COVID-19-caused cancellation of the remainder of spring training and the postponement of Opening Day and discuss the disquieting week and the ramifications for the culture and the 2020 baseball season.

Audio intro: Dan Bern, "Ballpark"
Audio outro: Frank Sinatra, "I Get Along Without You Very Well"

Link to MLB announcement
Link to FDR letter
Link to story on baseball’s previous responses to disease
Link to order The MVP Machine

 iTunes Feed (Please rate and review us!)
 Sponsor Us on Patreon
 Facebook Group
 Effectively Wild Wiki
 Twitter Account
 Get Our Merch!
 Email Us: podcast@fangraphs.com