The Best of FanGraphs: May 14-18, 2018

Each week, we publish in the neighborhood of 75 articles across our various blogs. With this post, we hope to highlight 10 to 15 of them. You can read more on it here. The links below are color coded — green for FanGraphs, brown for RotoGraphs, dark red for The Hardball Times and blue for Community Research.

MONDAY, 5/14
Swing Speed: Exit Velocity’s More Impressive Cousin, by Tim Jackson
Why can’t you be more like your cousin, Exit Velocity?

En Route: Departure, Arrival and the Baseball Space Between, by John Paschal
An excerpt: “No, the characters each touch on baseball — not football, not basketball, not soccer — because to touch on baseball is travel back to the grass and soil. It is to go beyond the contemporary psyche of Uncle Sam and his Monday Night Football minions and into a deeper ethos, one that recognizes with quiet confidence that no matter how popular the NFL and its “brand” become, no matter how fashionable the NBA and its “marketable stars” have gotten, baseball is the sport that has told our stories.”

Mike Clevinger, Ben Zobrist, and When Shoes Aren’t Just Shoes, by Sheryl Ring
MLB just issued these players warnings for violating uniform regulations, and it wasn’t out of shoe-envy.

A Bad Break for Cano and the Mariners, by Jay Jaffe
Even before it was apparent that Cano’s DL stint would double as suspension service, the injury was a bad break for the player and the team.

Cano’s PED Suspension Resonates Beyond This Season, by Jay Jaffe
Instead of just impacting the Mariners, Cano’s break from an MLB field will also impact the Hall of Fame landscape.

(Maybe) The Most Improved Hitter in Baseball, by Jeff Sullivan
Take a look y’all img_4346.jpeg.

Do World Series Losers Get Hangovers?, by Jay Jaffe
The Dodgers are looking at the previous World Series losers with the envy of a 32-year-old watching a 21-year-old after a night of drinking.

Rehearsals for Retirement, by Steven Goldman
An excerpt: “The thing you grew up wanting to do becomes the thing you’ve done and then, after many repetitions, becomes the thing you want to be done with. Alternatively, the thing that you haven’t done but might still dream of doing may now be beyond you, and this too is difficult to accept. There are, of course, those who will never reach that last turning, and more power to them: May they blessedly sleepwalk through the rest of their days.’

The Rockies Have a Historic Void, by Travis Sawchik
It’s possibly a void worse than the Mets DL.

The Supreme Court, Sports Betting, and the Future, by Sheryl Ring
Sheryl makes sense of the Supreme Court’s recent sports betting decision.

Mid-May Starting Pitcher Rankings Update, by Paul Sporer
Paul Sporer promised an update, so by god, we were going to get one.

Aaron Judge Is Hitting Better with an Even Worse Strike Zone, by Travis Sawchik
Hmmm, sounds like a little something I like to call “impressive.”

FRIDAY, 5/18
The Daily Grind: We’re Getting Crushed, by Brad Johnson
Not even the orange soda kind of Crush.

Baseball on Cheers, 25 Years Later, by Sarah Wexler
An excerpt: “More relevant for our purposes, though, is Malone’s life before the events of the series. He is a retired Red Sox reliever, one whose career was shortened by struggles with alcoholism. In an ironic twist, when he retired and sobered up, he became the owner of the eponymous Cheers. In the aforementioned Sports Illustrated article, Rushin managed to create an extremely thorough picture of Sam’s time in baseball. Since it is the 25th anniversary of both the end of Cheers and the Sports Illustrated profile, now seems a fitting time to revisit both.”

Odubel Herrera Is Chasing Derek Jeter’s Record, by Craig Edwards
Jeter’s record obviously won’t move, so making up the distance is all on Odubel.

Find Mina on Twitter @maddc8.

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Tim Jacksonmember
5 years ago

Important note: @John_Edwards_ co-wrote the exit velocity piece, and I couldn’t have done it without him!