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Attribution in a Pro-Am Collaboration: Dejan Kovacevic gets an assist from a reader

This blog is baseball heavy these days. You can tell it's April

Dejan Kovacevic is the Pirates beat reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and he is very good at his job. In fact, he recently won an AP award for his reporting.

One of Dejan's strengths is his ability to relate to readers. He runs a weekly Q&A, and he addresses fan concerns on his blog as well. But today's game story is a bit troubling.

Dejan mentions in today's blog post that he used information from a fan email in his story on the Pirates 11-1 loss to the Braves:

Everyone who writes for any publication, online or otherwise, will talk about how much they value their readers, and I am no different. Except for one thing, maybe: I can offer proof.

Baseball in 150 words or less

Can you explain baseball to a 6-year-old in 150 words or less? Slate needs your help. It's not entirely clear if these 150 words would be only focused on the rules of the game...interpret this prompt however you see fit.

I'll post my effort here when I'm finished with it.

Dissertations and Baseball

Some days you don't like your dissertation (actually, this goes for just about any kind of writing...) You read it, and you think: "What the hell am I even talking about?" No one is immune.

See, a dissertation is like a baseball season. It's long, and your feelings about it at any given moment are not indicative of how you will feel at the end of it. Some days you feel great about it. Some days you hate it. Both of these extremes are based on limited data sets. Both of these feelings are essentially wrong.

So, yesterday when my Pirates won their home opener, I was pretty happy. Zach Duke pitched a gem, and Freddy Sanchez was knocking the ball all over the yard. But I also knew that it was one game out of 162. Duke will return to will the rest of the team. Getting too high or low is a mistake. Likewise, yesterday when I disliked my dissertation, I chalked it up to a bad day. I set it aside.

Batting Stance Guy: The Pirates

As the pirates "retool" the farm system yet again (*sigh*), it's the time of year again where one has to have a sense of humor about being a Pirates fan. It is for this reason that I bring you "Batting Stance Guy" impersonating Pittsburgh Pirates past and present. This dude is impressive - I especially enjoyed Stargell, Kendall, and LaRoche:

Link Via Where Have You Gone Andy Van Slyke

Ambidexterity Confounds Baseball's Rules

College basketball once banned dunking because of Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar). What will baseball do with Pat Venditte?

For those not so familiar with baseball: Left-handed hitters generally hit better against right-handed pitchers, and right-handed hitters generally hit better against left-handed pitchers. Being able to throw with both arms gives the pitcher a distinct advantage by allowing him or make their decision about which arm to use after the batter steps into the box. Now, throw a switch-hitter into the mix, and you get the "Ring Around the Rosie" game shown above.

Jason Bay on the Block

The firesale of my beloved (hated?) Pirates is beginning: Jason Bay is on the trading block (link via Honest Wagner).

Not one winning season since winning the NL East in 1992, and it ain't going to stop anytime soon. If we're lucky, the Buccos will turn this thing around in three years or so. And I will continue to pay to watch (give or take) 100 games of a terrible team.

At least the Steelers are kicking some ass


Ode to Mark Teixeira

The Braves got Mark Teixeira and their fans would like to sing about it:

Being and Time: A-Rod's 500 Home Run

I'm not sure if this is exactly what Heidegger had in mind when he rethought the relationship between Being and Time, but this story strikes me as an interesting example of the relationship between the two.

Alex Rodriguez hit is 499th career home run Wednesday night. However, today he will play in a game that actually began on June 28. That is, the game was suspended in the middle because of weather. If A-Rod hits a home run in that resumed game, then home run 499 magically becomes home run 500:

On Friday, A-Rod will be on deck when the Yankees resume a suspended game against the Orioles in the eighth inning. If he homers in the completion of the suspended game, it would count as being hit on June 28, when the game began. That would make it home run No. 493 -- and Wednesday night's would become No. 500.

The rule, 10.23 (d), states: "All performances in the completion of a suspended game shall be considered as occurring on the original date of the game."


I'm off to Comerica Park to watch the Tigers and Cardinals. There will be no computers or writing involved.

Image courtesy of The Javelina (some rights reserved)

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