Friday Links (18 Jun 10)

Something old, something new… something something, something blue…

  • San Diego Padres 2010 Draft Recap (College Splits). What the title says, with links to all kinds of juicy data. On fifth-round pick Rico Noel: “In three years, he’s been a wizard in the field; his 15 total runs above average in center is the sixth-best defensive mark of anyone (at any position!) in this draft class.”
  • Wait Til Next Year: 2011 Draft Preview – Hitters (FanGraphs). A few Toreros show up on Bryan Smith’s list of players to watch for next year’s draft.
  • The predictably unpredictable career of Jamie Moyer (Hardball Times). Moyer is older than Bo Jackson and Jerry Rice? Who knew… I’m a fan because, well, Moyer is older than me.
  • Edward Mujica: A case of gopheritis (Friar Forecast). Myron finds yet more ways to demonstrate that Edward Mujica gives up a lot of home runs.
  • Joe Torre refuses to talk about the McCourts’ psychic (LA Observed). My friend Alan sends this article about Torre’s thoughts (or lack thereof) on “Vladimir Shpunt, the Russian healer who may have been paid six figures by Frank and Jamie McCourt to beam good vibes toward Dodger Stadium from his TV room in suburban Boston.” Further proof that life is stranger than fiction. Ben Lindbergh at Baseball Prospectus tests the whole V-Energy thing.
  • Former outfielder Azocar dies at 45 ( I’m sorry to say I have no recollection of Azocar (he played for the Padres toward the end of my college years, the one time in my life when I didn’t follow baseball obsessively), but Raphy at sheds some light. [h/t reader Parlo]
  • How slow could you throw? (Hardball Times). Stupid fun. From Mike Fast’s article: “The slowest actual pitch from 2007-2010 of which I am aware is the 48-mph eephus pitch thrown by Orlando Hernandez to Luis Gonzalez on August 25, 2007.”
  • Umpire leaves Garland all shook up (North County Times). Jon Garland is not a Larry Vanover fan, and who can blame him? [h/t Gaslamp Ball]
  • More Egregious Umpiring: Yorvit Torrealba Suspended Three Games (FanGraphs). I’ve gotta be honest. I watched this in real time and I’ve watched the video. I don’t think Torrealba has a legitimate beef with Vanover’s call (on that particular pitch; as Garland noted, the strike zone was a bit shaky all night) or his behavior. I’m as fed up as anyone with confrontational umpires, but this isn’t in that category.
  • Padres’ Gregerson keeps ordering up sliders (Yahoo!). Jeff Passan is the latest to hop on the Luke Gregerson bandwagon. Gregerson on his slider: “A lot of guys say they can’t pick up the spin on it. I don’t know why. It’s an aspect of baseball and physics I just don’t understand. Other guys don’t, either, so I guess I can keep throwing it.”
  • Slider sending Gregerson up reliever ranks ( More love for the right-hander. Credit former Padres outfielder John VanderWal, now a scout, for recognizing Gregerson’s ability. Quoth Kevin Towers: “He’s telling me how this guy can get big league hitters out right now and how he has a wipeout slider that plays to righties and lefties… He said it disappears.” VanderWal, you may recall, could hit a little.
  • Putting a Face to a Name (It Might Be Dangerous… You Go First). DePo shares video of the Padres top picks in the 2010 draft. More here and here.
  • Prospect Watch: Drew Cumberland (Friar Forecast). Ben offers his thoughts on the young shortstop.
  • Lugo epitomizes Orioles’ season (SweetSpot). Rock on, Dwain Anderson.
  • Offensive Evolution (Part 1) (Baseball-Reference). Andy describes this as the first in “a series of relatively short posts looking at how offense among regular players in baseball has changed through the years.” Part 2 can be found here. Good stuff.
  • The Internet cried a little when you wrote that on it (Hardball Times). Mike Fast examines common PITCHf/x pitfalls.
  • TinCaps Add Valdez, Mikolas to All-Star Roster (Baseball in Fort Wayne). I fell in love with Jeudy Valdez when I saw him at Eugene a couple years ago and he smoked three doubles in a game. Also, he and I share a birthday, so there’s that. Valdez is hitting .252/.312/.419 this year, with 7 HR and 16 SB… not bad numbers for a 21-year-old second baseman in the Midwest League.

That’s all for now. Orioles are in town for the weekend. USD alum Brian Matusz comes home to face the Padres tonight. I’ll be rooting for him to pitch just well enough to lose. Go Toreros. Go Padres.