“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): I don’t know anything about the Padres

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to (and aftermath of) the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Padres entry.

I know nothing about the Padres. Okay, not nothing, but they are probably one of my biggest weak-spots. I… basically know nothing about them. Oh, I know Matt Kemp is still pretty good, and both Tyson Ross and James Shields are not bad pitchers, despite the beating the Dodgers gave Ross on Monday. Oh, and Will Myers is still a guy!

But…. yeah, I really don’t know much about them. And I won’t insult you by claiming otherwise.

So instead, let’s talk about how awesome the logo is:

I mean, look at that. It combines the best portions of previous Padres graphical identities into a nice combo.

And that’s cool.

Advertisements

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): Will the Cardinals finally miss the playoffs?

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Cardinals’ entry.

In 2010, the St. Louis Cardinals went 86-76, and missed the playoffs.

They have made it every year since then. They are now the playoff constant that the Atlanta Braves and New York Yankees once were. And yet, in the tough NL Central, it’s entirely possible that this season may see them finally miss the postseason for the first time since that 2010 team.

It’s not that the Cardinals will be bad, so much as that they are in the NL Central, with the Cubs and the Pirates. They also are, slowly, getting older. Matt Holliday is 36. Adam Wainwright is 34. Yadier Molina is 33 and those catching legs can’t be in the best shape. The Cubs and Pirates are younger, the Brewers are on their way up (although it’s doubtful they will be a threat this season). The window maybe, just maybe, could be closing.

On the other hand, these are the Cardinals. They excel at beating expectations. The “Devil Magic” may never stop.

Or will it?

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): The Nationals are no longer the hot pick, so they might as well win the NL

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to (and in some cases the aftermath of) the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Nationals entry.

Last season, the Nationals were the trendy pick to win the World Series. This year, they are not.

Which probably means they’ll go and win the NL because baseball history is full of teams going on to win after everyone else has moved on to a new pick. The best Cardinals team of this century (2004) didn’t win the World Series, but two years later (2006) a 83-76 team won it, for example. Plenty of people probably picked the Cardinals in 2004. I doubt as many picked them in 2006, at least once the playoffs started and they only had a 83-win season.

So… why not the the Nationals? They still have Bryce Harper, they still have Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg. Jonathan Papelbon is…well…. Jonathan Papelbon, for better and for worse. Maybe Daniel Murphy will be even half as good as he was in the postseason last year. Are they as good on paper as some previous Nationals teams? No. But, well, these games aren’t played on paper.

So… why not the Nationals?

 

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): The Brewers Beer Barrel Man is a robot

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to (and in some cases the aftermath of) the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Brewers entry.

 

Let’s look at the Milwaukee Brewers’ “Beer Barrel Man” logo of the 1970s and their time in the minor leagues:

What does that look like to you?

To me, it looks like a robot. You are never going to convince me otherwise, so don’t even try.

(For more substantial Brewers talk, listen to my conversation with Travis Sarandos of Brew Crew Ball in the most recent Continuucast.)

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): I repeat that the Pittsburgh Pirates should be more honestly called the Pittsburgh Privateers

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Pirates entry.

The Pirates, like many teams this year, could be a serious contender. They could well return to the postseason for the fourth time in as many years, which is something I never thought I’d type, even with the expanded wild card.

There’s a lot to like about the Pirates. They have Andrew McCutchen, who is of course still one of the best players in the game, they still have Gerrit Cole, and they have several players who will be coming back from injuries or near-endless free agency. They are in a tough division, but it’s not going to be surprising at all if they make the playoffs.

However, I do have to bring one problem to everyone’s attention: The Pirates’ name is completely inaccurate.

And, no, I don’t just mean that in the sense that McCutchen and friends do not actually plunder their way across the seven seas. No, I mean that their name doesn’t quite fit.

First off, some history. The Pittsburgh Pirates can be traced back to the Pittsburgh Alleghenys (sic) of the 19th century. That was the name they played under starting in their first season of 1887 and what many previous teams in the Pittsburgh area had been named. However, in 1890, the Alleghenys signed Lou Bierbauer, who had been a member of the American Association’s Philadelphia Athletics (despite the name, there is no connection to either of the Athletics or Phillies of today). Their actions were called “piratical” by American Association officials, and the Alleghenys ran with it, changing their name to Pirates.

However, there is one problem: just because your actions are piratical does not make you a pirate. Well, under some definitions it does, but only the most general and encompassing of them.

You see, pirates are, by definition, not part of any country or location other then themselves, their ship, and their crew. Maybe also other pirate crews, if they are part of some sort of terrorist group (such as many of the Somali pirates of today, who are loosely connected with terrorist organizations in the area).

Now, let’s see, while the Pittsburgh Pirates are definitely in it for themselves and their crew (their teammates), they also are representing a location and a government, albeit indirectly: The City of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

And, guess what? When a Pirate is signed up to represent one government or location’s interests, the pirate ceases to be a pirate, and becomes a privateer. To put it into baseball terms, pirates are basically always free agents, while privateers are players who’ve signed up to play for a certain team.

So, ladies and gentleman, know that while the 2016 Pittsburgh Pirates may be destined for great things, they are not, technically, pirates. Rather, they are the Pittsburgh Privateers.

Which still kind of rolls off the tongue pretty well, all things considered.

(Parts of this were first posted for the 2015 Pirates “30 Teams, 30 Posts”.)

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): Introducing CONTINUUVIDEO, with a preview of the SAN DIEGO PADRES!

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Padres’ entry.

With the renewed vigor of the Continuucast, I am proud to announce that the Baseball Continuum will also begin doing a VIDEO SEGMENT, entitled CONTINUUVIDEO. The first installment deals with the San Diego Padres.

Among the topics covered:

-San Diego’s preparations for the 2016 All-Star Game

-Discussion of GM A.J. Preller’s strategy after last year’s failures

-The Padres’ somewhat underrated pitching staff

-Fun anagrams for Yangervis Solarte (including “Solitary Avengers” and “Greatly Aversions”)

-And a special appearance by a guy who used to sell fish tacos at Petco Park!

Go see it here!

Over at @HOVG: The latest “Wisdom and Links” has the “30 Teams, 30 Posts” for the Reds

Cincinnati gets it’s “30 Teams, 30 Posts” time in the sun over at the Hall of Very Good today. Check it out.