Hall of Famer Bert Blyleven, ladies and gentlemen.

Picks of the Pen: Bert's Choice, Joe's Voice, and Jim Joyce

This week, Jordan Campbell gets off the bus, and Alex Brown from Redbird Rants hops aboard, shouting something about three salvageable moments from the Cardinals’ disappointing year.  But instead of what you normally do when someone gets on a bus and starts telling you things, you should probably listen to him.

Change is in the air, as Bud Selig is beckoning Joe Torre towards the yowling windstorm of inactivity that is the executive positions of Major League Baseball.  Are the two moves related?  Almost definitely yes.

Link in after the bump.

PIC OF THE PEN

[Sportress of Blogitude]

Justin

Hey, here’s an eerie little reminder of how much that blown call broke Jim Joyce’s reality:  Apparently he spends a lot of time in his smelly garage, alone, chain smoking and playing solitaire on his desk/card table.  I assumed I had stumbled upon the spec script to Darren Aronofsky’s next tragic tale of woeful mental decay, but no, this is just ESPN’s article in which they kicked down the doors to Joyce’s house and asked him to re-live the mistake that’s irreversibly blistered his career.

I really had to Wikipedia “Remetee” to decide if I believed Ryan Braun actually had his own clothing line after I read Lou Olsen’s post on Reviewing the Brew.  The rest of the story includes this phrase:

“Luckily for me, I am made out of a Phenol formaldehyde resin, so heat is not much of a concern.”

Ha ha what.

Michael

This year’s Hall of Fame class (and candidates) inspired more debate than any other group I can recall.  Over the last week, there have been about 1.42 million articles posted trying to determine who is a Hall of Famer, who is but shouldn’t be, who isn’t but should be, how do you find one, do you know it when you see it, whose stats match up with whom, and how the heck does Chet Lemon get compared to Jim Rice anyway?

Joe Posnanski, as he usually does, puts the whole debate into perspective with Swiftian excellence.  My favorite article in a long time.

Over the course of his career, Billy Wagner was a lights out closer with awesome stuff.  His retirement after the 2010 season leaves the Atlanta Braves with a hole in the bullpen.  The favorite to take his place at the back of the ‘pen is Craig Kimbrel who has similarly electric stuff.  Tomahawk Take‘s Bob Horton asks if he’s the answer for that role … and feels confidently that yes… yes he is.

Wally

In honor of Bert Blyleven’s election to the HOF, John Sickels took a quick look back at Bert’s travels through the minor leagues.

Unfortunately, the efforts of minor league GMs goes almost completely unnoticed. This does not apply to Scott Stewart – of Teddy Never Wins – who recently had a chance to interview Harrisburg Senators GM Randy Whitaker.

Steve

It was bound to happen. With the Chicago Cubs acquiring Matt Garza, the comparisons of the Cubs deal for Garza and the Brewers deal for Zack Greinke just screamed the obvious, who got the better deal? Of course, a Cubs blog feels it was the Cubs… well, that’s the opinion of the gang over at Another Cubs Blog.

With the beginning of a new year comes all sorts of analyses on all 30 teams’ potential roster. Want an in depth look at how the Toronto Blue Jays lineup stacks up for 2011? Check out Mat Germain’s take over on Jays Journal.

>SECRET BONUS LINK< And how do the Brewers fans feel about the Cubs getting Garza and those comparisons? I think you can figure that out but the crew on The Brewers Bar are of the opinion that the Cubs are still a non-contender.

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