link of the day #1: dat farm system.
the cardinals get 6 prospects in the top 35 of all sickels prospects in baseball, 2 in the top 10. kolten wong, matt adams, and tyler jenkins check in elsewhere on the list. good god, y'all.
link of the day #2: the closer you get . . . the more i ignore you.
joe posnanski is in rare form, breaking down traditional myths with easily understood stats. no WAR, no FIP, no SIERA, no xBABIP. he relies on team winning percentage.
tl;dr - despite our recent baseballing fetish for the closer, the success rate of teams leading going into the ninth inning has remained more or less constant (~95%) across the pre-closer and post-closer era. breaking it down by one-run, two-run, and three-run leads going into the ninth, the trend is even more (less?) convincing.
adopting the closer has had essentially ZERO effect on the likelihood of the team who is winning at the beginning of the ninth inning also is winning at the end of the ninth inning. which is the exact opposite of what you should expect.
this is great writing, easily approached and comprehensible to the lay person. it's a simple proof for something that sabr-types have believed in for a long time.
link of the day #3: roster moves
kevin siegrist will no longer force me to recall the "'i' before 'e' except after 'c'" rule so often, having been sent to memphis. barret browning was sent to memphis, and i may never have to think of him again at all. cody stanley will start at springfield, with strict instructions not to accept pills, creams, or injections from strangers. elsewhere, one-time prospect adam reifer was released, after seeing his performance slip, losing time to injuries, and facing overwhelming pressure from a crop of promising pitching talent.
the injury updates: after some frustrating news about carpenter and furcal, the remainder of the disabled list follies seems to be unwinding in a hopeful manner. jaime garcia and his impinged shoulder have been surprisingly adequate. initial shoulder tightness from shelby miller has resolved. allen craig had some initial shoulder soreness, but has returned to full duty.
most recently, marc rzepczynski endured a freak golf accident, where one of his drives launched either the golf ball or some debris into his eye. after some rest his eye essentially healed itself.
as furcal's injury clearly became worse than the club anticipated, there was a lot of weeping and tearing of clothes about the club falsely stating that someone's injury was less serious than it turned out to be. and, yeah, the club could've done better in messaging clearly about the risks that furcal's injury would not just resolve, the complaints were in large part an exercise in selective memory; lots of shoulder tightness just goes away, and we don't recall it for just that reason.
this is not to say that the club's record on injuries is spotless, just to note that there are plenty of cases where a little rest really does address the injury.