Set a course.

Random collection of music, sports, politics & cute animals.
You can find me most places @theryangavin
After leasing the Missouri Theatre for two years, Mizzou has purchased the historic building! The acquisition will save the university millions of dollars. Photo by Shane Epping.

After leasing the Missouri Theatre for two years, Mizzou has purchased the historic building! The acquisition will save the university millions of dollars. Photo by Shane Epping.

Couldn’t have had a nicer official start to spring at #Mizzou! Photo by Nicholas Benner.

Couldn’t have had a nicer official start to spring at #Mizzou! Photo by Nicholas Benner.

Students usually set fashion trends, but it was Chancellor Loftin showing them how to imitate his signature look with a lesson at the Student Center today. Photo by Jake Hamilton.

Students usually set fashion trends, but it was Chancellor Loftin showing them how to imitate his signature look with a lesson at the Student Center today. Photo by Jake Hamilton.

Karin Loftin and Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin show off their masks at the #truefalse Jubilee! The film fest is underway in CoMo!

Karin Loftin and Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin show off their masks at the #truefalse Jubilee! The film fest is underway in CoMo!

Mizzou develops breakthrough cancer-killing treatment

mizzou:

M. Frederick Hawthorne’s research team has developed a new form of radiation therapy that successfully put cancer into remission in mice. This innovative treatment produced none of the harmful side-effects of conventional chemo and radiation cancer therapies. Clinical trials in humans could begin soon after Hawthorne secures funding.

Preseason All-MLB Team

Joe Sheehan, writing for Sports Illustrated, put together his preseason All-MLB team. He made some fine selections, but I think I could put together a better roster with players he didn’t select.

Catcher: Yadier Molina, Cardinals. Sheehan took the MVP Posey, while I think I got the better all-around player.

First base: Joey Votto, Reds. I was surprised this wasn’t the no-brainer pick at the position. I’d take him in a heartbeat.

Second base: Aaron Hill, Dbacks. It’s impossible to top Robbie Cano, but Hill went completely under the radar and wasn’t too far off the pace. Compare the two. Cano: .313/.379/.550, 105 R, 33 HR, 94 RBI, 3 SB. Hill: .302/.360/.522, 93 R, 26 HR, 85 RBI, 14 SB. Not nearly the landslide most people make it out to be.

Third base: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers. Evan Longoria’s a great player, and undoubtedly better defensively and on the basepaths, but I’ll take Miggy’s bat on my team any day.

Shortstop: Ian Desmond, Nationals. Jose Reyes is another hard-to-beat selection for Sheehan, but I’ll take my shortstop with more pop.

Leftfield: Mike Trout, Angels. If you can add the best player in baseball to your roster, no disrespect to Bryce Harper (who Sheehan chose in a toughie), then you do it.

Centerfield: Matt Kemp, Dodgers. While Trout’s probably the best player in baseball, Sheehan’s selection of Andrew McCutchen in center is probably the second best. Kemp was on pace for a monster season before getting hurt. A full (healthy) season should produce similar numbers.

Rightfield: Jason Heyward, Braves. Giancarlo Stanton will mash the ball, assuming anyone pitches to him with the lineup “protection” the Marlins provided. I’ll take Heyward’s ever-improving bat and defense for my team.

Designated hitter: Adam Dunn, White Sox. Love seeing Billy get picked by Sheehan after his career year, but I’ll take the consistent Dunn for my squad. It’s hard to pass up an almost-guaranteed 40 home runs.

Right-handed starter: Justin Verlander, Tigers. Until he proves to be mortal, I’ll take Verlander over Strasburg.

Left-handed starter: David Price, Rays. It’d be a hell of a pitchers’ duel watching Price face off against Sheehan’s pick of Kershaw. I don’t know how you could say either is better than the other.

Closer: Aroldis Chapman, Reds. Comparing to Kimbrel, Chapman has just as many strikeouts but a slightly higher ERA (1.01 vs. 1.51) and WHIP (0.65 vs. 0.81). For the purpose of this exercise, I’m glad he wasn’t moved to the starting rotation.

Manager: Davey Johnson, Nationals. He stole my choice of Joe Maddon, but Johnson knows his way around an MLB team.

So, how do our lineups project?

Sheehans

  1. SS Reyes
  2. CF McCutchen
  3. 2B Cano
  4. RF Stanton
  5. 1B Fielder
  6. C Posey
  7. LF Harper
  8. DH Butler
  9. 3B Longoria

Gavins

  1. LF Trout
  2. CF Kemp
  3. 3B Cabrera
  4. 1B Votto
  5. DH Dunn
  6. RF Heyward
  7. 2B Hill
  8. C Molina
  9. SS Desmond

Pitching: Strasburg vs. Verlander, Kershaw vs. Price, Kimbrel vs. Chapman.

Who’s got the better team?

Baseball daydreaming

The season is just about to start, which means all sorts of good time-wasting predictions and preseason stories to read. Yesterday, I was reading through a writer’s 20 Ways To Improve Baseball Right Now. Of course, No. 9 caught my attention. “Expand to Montreal and Puerto Rico.”

Baseball expansion is logical. Not only are revenues at all-time highs, it would also solve the issue of uneven divisions/leagues and interleague play. Taking into account current league and division, MLB rivalries, geographical rivalries, market shares and competitive balance, below was my best stab at it. I welcome any thoughts and/or suggestions on how you think it would work better.

First, my three quibbles:

  • I don’t like the strength of the AL East and weakness of the NL South, but I don’t see any easy or logical way to change it.
  • I don’t like both expansion teams in the NL but those teams seemed to fit best there.
  • It might be the homer in me wanting to flip the Royals and Brewers, but I think it would make for more compelling divisions. Left as listed for continuity’s sake. Thoughts?

AL East

  • Boston Red Sox
  • New York Yankees
  • Baltimore Orioles
  • Tampa Bay Rays

AL North

  • Toronto Blue Jays
  • Detroit Tigers
  • Pittsburgh Pirates
  • Cleveland Indians

AL Midwest

  • Minnesota Twins
  • Chicago White Sox
  • Kansas City Royals
  • Colorado Rockies

AL West

  • Seattle Mariners
  • Oakland A’s
  • Los Angeles Angels
  • Texas Rangers

NL East

  • Washington Nationals
  • Philadelphia Phillies
  • New York Mets
  • Montreal Expos

NL Central

  • Cincinnati Reds
  • Chicago Cubs
  • St. Louis Cardinals
  • Milwaukee Brewers

NL South

  • Atlanta Braves
  • Houston Astros
  • Miami Marlins
  • Puerto Rico Sharks

NL West

  • San Francisco Giants
  • Los Angeles Dodgers
  • San Diego Padres
  • Arizona Diamondbacks
mrblank:


Snow Jabba!


My coworker’s the best.

mrblank:

Snow Jabba!

My coworker’s the best.