Around the Sphere

I have a question. The Trade Talk blog was a big success, featuring short posts from our 30 MLB.com beat writers up until the last Trading Deadline. The Hot Stove Blog
came next, again with constant and concise posts from our 30 MLB.com
beat writers throughout this offseason, accounting for 80 percent of
all MLBlogs traffic and a must on the average blogroll. What would you
suggest our beat writers do between Opening Day and the offseason, in
terms of one powerhouse MLBlog that everyone would have to see on a
regular basis? I am going to make a suggestion and would love your
input as great bloggers.

Congratulations to the new president of the United States and incoming White Sox fan in the White House. I don’t know about you, but my own personal favorite “moment” today was when the glass doors were opened and Barack Hussein Obama, following the herald trumpets, was introduced to that sea of humanity on the Mall. What was your one “moment”? Here’s to dusting ourselves off and picking ourselves up, just like Obama said in his speech. I wrote a news story on MLB.com, and also a story about our fellow MLBlogs pioneer, Scott Reifert, who was right by the stage and called me during the parade with a unique view. What an unbelievable day filled with pride, regardless of party ties.

This MLBlogger has a good idea if you ask me.

I am speechless sometimes over commenters who question why something other than actual baseball would dare to be covered on MLB.com. These must be people who have not paid attention to our sites over the past decade. MLB.com is teeming with actual humans, and we have a First Fan who proudly wears his love for baseball with his cap often. Our philosophy always has been to write about major news stories, to tip our caps and show perspective — not to be a toy department. Every story is a baseball story. Everything has something to do with baseball. It is an important fabric of our life and I am happy to make any story a baseball story, whether it is Pluto being thrown out of the stellar lineup or a White Sox fan being hailed as the new chief. Those same commenters should prepare themselves for my Super Bowl story coming soon. I am interested in how you cope with loons.

Welcome to new MLBloggers including Tripleplay’s Twins Territory, maintained by Rich, a 26-year-old student in Liverpool, England. He has a lot in common with Twins pitcher Glen Perkins, because they started an MLBlog at about the same time. Give it up for the Twins, because they have more club-maintained MLBlogs (five) than any other team — unless you count all of those MLBlogs we created in 2007 for the candidates running for Red Sox Nation President. It is always a good day when you have to break away from doing something important because a Major League club requires some help starting a new blog. I am excited about 2009 because blogs are relentlessly more important here at MLBAM.

I especially love the Perk and Kevin Slowey blogs because they do their own thing whenever they feel like it. That makes it kind of tricky to know when to tell you they posted, so you might want to subscribe to their RSS feed on the blog’s side panel.

Thanks for all of the great feedback to our first Jblog School post. We will be back soon with the next class and guest lecturers. Latest Leaders also coming soon.

Just got a sneak-peek at our friend Jane Heller’s new book, “Confessions of a She-Fan,” and she had me at “A-Rod’s eyes are the color of pistachio.” That is the first sentence in the book. I really wanted to read every page right then but alas I had to forward it to our reviewer here at MLB.com. I do encourage everyone to order this book now and as usual say hi to one of our top MLBloggers, although you probably get comments from her already.

Jane’s latest post made me think about being at big events, specifically the World Series. Here are the Fall Classics I have attended and what I think of:

1990 (Schottzie slimed me on the elevator, damn dog), 1992 (I mostly think of Neon Deion), 1993 (Carter’s HR landed right in front of me), 1994 (oh wait a minute never mind), 1995 (Chop, Chop, Chop), 1996 (glad to leave Fulton Co. Stadium behind), 1997 (snowed on my keyboard in RF aux box in CLE, then the next game humidity of FLA forced me to emergency room with acute asthma attack so I missed the finish), 1998 (fish tacos in San Diego), 2003 (Clemens being saluted by both dugouts), 2004 (sitting in the right-field power alley at Busch and watching Red Sox fans celebrate for two hours while I wrote), 2005 (Steve Perry soaked in champagne and singing “Don’t Stop Believin'” right next to me in the White Sox clubhouse at Houston), 2006 (David Eckstein being forced by Scott Spiezio to take a swig of whiskey after winning the yellow Vette), 2007 (spending six innings of Game 3 on Coors Field first-aid stretcher due to altitude sickness while marathon training), 2008 (cowbells in FLA and riding the lead vehicle in Philly’s long-awaited parade). That’s 13 Fall Classics.

Where will the next World Series be played?

That’s why we’re all here, right? All of these Caravans, Conventions, Winter Warmups, FanFests and the like are about to converge, and it is a time when you really start to feel it. A new baseball fan is in the White House, and a new Spring Training is just around the corner. It is on the countdown clock on our homepage all the time. It looks like most of you are feeling the excitement now, too. It is like an internal clock, isn’t it? Our friend Susan at Perfect Pitch said she just got her tickets to Florida and I know how jazzed she is.

Please be sure to join our Official MLBlogs Twitter if you haven’t already! If you already are on Twitter, then follow us @mlblogs and tease your MLBlogs postings with tweets there. It is an extension of this community and will grow and grow in importance.

We are continuing to look into the commenting-permission issue that sporadically is reported around here. I expect this matter to be resolved soon. The default setting for the entire community was for no restrictions whatsoever on commenting anywhere, but there seems to be a bug in our system somewhere, and we are communicating with Six Apart on it.

Have a nice Inauguration Night, and congrats and best wishes again to the new Chief. It’s time for a comeback.

22 Comments

Thanks, Mark! Hopefully, someone will step to the plater..er…I mean the keyboard!
-Kathy
http://redbirdchatter.mlblogs.com

I haven’t noticed a Mets Pro Blog. How about you get one of those started?
http://metsmainman.mlblogs.com

Kathy: Thanks for the comment and I just forwarded it to the Cardinals’ PR chief and our Cardinals beat writer. Will stay on the mission of developing more player blogs. It’s basically a matter of making sure they all know this platform exists. Some, as you probably know, come and go (ie Wright, Youk, Haren). John Rodriguez was the last Cards blog. Thanks for the prompt.

Yes and go Rangers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

so for i do

Great to see the new Perkins pro blog! Any hope of finding a Cardinal player to blog?
-Kathy

http://redbirdchatter.mlblogs.com

kaybee: he took the oath of office a little past noon ET, but at EXACTLY noon he became the 44th president.

jenn: good thinking on the phillies phollowers posting.

bern: i agree totally. my favorite sportswriters always have been those who expand their thought beyond their sport. The art form is knowing when to do that.

It was a very interesting inaguration to listen to. But I’m pretty sure Obama got inaguarated a few minutes after noon…at least, it was past 9 in California time! It will be a very interesting four years…
http://kaybee.mlblogs.com

Check out RSBS to see Allen’s Inauguration Day ticket. Pretty fancy stuff.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

I, too, don’t have a problem with posting about things other than baseball or on things indirectly related to baseball. Blogs that stick to on-the-field stuff are pretty boring, if you ask me.

As far as an MLB pro blog for during the season, I would like to see a blog where the beat writers offer their opinions about news that happens during the season. They already report on things during the season on their respectives team sites; why not have a place where they can editorialize?
http://thisfanslife.mlblogs.com

I had actually posted photos from the Rally in Wilmington on Saturday before I read this and was wondering if it was a good idea or not. Usually when I ask myself that question, I say “screw it!” …and then post it. My next post I am working on right now will be a good example of that :O) So, thanks for the encouragement!

Jenn
http://PhilliesPhollowers.mlblogs.com/
http://www.PhightinPhils.com/

I stand correct – and so do BOTH of my boys history teachers who they watched the Inauguration with! Can’t say that makes me feel good!

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

Mark,
Today was such a historical day–I’m so thankful that I got to watch it. I only started watching at 11:30 though because even though it was on during chemistry, I was distracted by my hot air balloon obligations (not an option unfortunately).
I actually think it’s amazing how we can pretty much connect baseball to anything– including “Pluto being thrown out of the stellar lineup” (lol). When I watch Ken Burns’ baseball documentary, I am constantly amazed at all the connections it can make to some of the events going on in America at that time.
Great World Series stories– the humidity of Florida is terrible isn’t it? And in October?? Doesn’t that seem just a little off? And Mark, I’ve always heard that the altitude in Colorado was a problem for people, but that sounds really scary! I’m glad you made a solid recovery.

And my favorite inaugural moment? The first time that I saw Obama (after 11:30 for me)… he had this incredible, “humbled”, and determined look on his face that is indescribable. I think he’ll be a great president!

-Elizabeth
http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

Mark,
Today was such a historical day–I’m so thankful that I got to watch it. I only started watching at 11:30 though because even though it was on during chemistry, I was distracted by my hot air balloon obligations (not an option unfortunately).
I actually think it’s amazing how we can pretty much connect baseball to anything– including “Pluto being thrown out of the stellar lineup” (lol). When I watch Ken Burns’ baseball documentary, I am constantly amazed at all the connections it can make to some of the events going on in America at that time.
Great World Series stories– the humidity of Florida is terrible isn’t it? And in October?? Doesn’t that seem just a little off? And Mark, I’ve always heard that the altitude in Colorado was a problem for people, but that sounds really scary! I’m glad you made a solid recovery.

And my favorite inaugural moment? The first time that I saw Obama (after 11:30 for me)… he had this incredible, “humbled”, and determined look on his face that is indescribable. I think he’ll be a great president!

-Elizabeth
http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

My favorite moment was when he smiled when they messed up on taking the oath. How many of us have been in a situation in public where we forget or incorrectly say something? In that moment he smiled and kept on. He’s going to need a lot of smiles and keeping on in his presidency. I wish him the best and it’s cool to see another fan of baseball in the Whitehouse.
tom
http://rockymountainway.mlblogs.com

Julia — thanks, but a small correction. No, Biden was never president in any capacity. At exactly noon ET, the transfer happened from Bush to Obama…no middleman, sorry! That is according to Wolf Blitzer and all the reports I read as well. The bylaws state that at noon the incumbent president is replaced by the elected president. VP has nothing to do with it. 🙂

My favorite moment today was the smile on President Obama’s face when Chief Justice Roberts said, “Congratulations Mr. President.” It wasn’t his usual huge smile, but it was the grin of knowing he accomplished something truly historic. And then the stereotypical female in me said “I love Michelle Obama’s dress!” And then the White Sox fan in me said “the President and I love the same baseball team. HOW COOL IS THAT?!” I can’t wait for your Super Bowl blog because like baseball, football consumes my life during its season!
Jen
http://ajroxmywhitesox.mlblogs.com

I have to admit i like a little varity in reading blogs and I do not mind if its a bit off baseball.

http://ladyyankee.mlblogs.com/

Mark – I loved today when President Obama’s youngest daughter gave her dad the “thumbs up” after getting sworn in. As a parent it was comforting for me to know that while he might be commander-in-chief, he’s still “Dad” when he goes home at night. In the schools in Sudbury today, all tvs were on so that our students could watch the activities. It warmed my heart when my first graders broke into applause when President Obama was sworn in. Seeing their excitement – it just reminded me about all that is right with the next generation! Also – did you know that VP Joe Biden was actually President for 5 minutes and 9 seconds? Yup! They were late swearing Obama in and at noon George W’s term was over!

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

What a great book promoter you are, Mark! Do you charge by the hour? Seriously, you know how much I appreciate your support and I look forward to reading the review on MLB.com. Those are great moments you listed, although I’m sorry about your bouts of asthma, altitude sickness and Schottzie! My personal moment from today’s inauguration was when Chief Justice Roberts flubbed the oath and Obama wasn’t thrown in the least.

She-Fan
http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

How about “Springosphere” or “Springball” for Spring Training?
http://bronx-awesome.mlblogs.com/
King Yankees

Gotta get that book. Can’t wait! As for memories, how suiting that Spiezio would do that, Mark. But today is all about a White Sox fan… and what a historic day it is… I am certainly proud to be an American.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

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