Russell A. Carleton – Baseball Prospectus ($): Wins Above Replacement is a great statistic. I use WAR, in all its permutations, quite often and will continue to use it in my baseball writing moving forward. However, WAR, no matter the version, is not a conversation ender as far as statistics go. A baseball player isn’t just their WAR total for the year and if I ever start talking like they are then I need a swift kick in the pants. Baseball players create results that we then turn into various statistics. Those same players also produce fun, amazing moments, experiences that will last a lifetime, laughs, joy, heartbreak, and so much more. WAR is good for many things, it’s just not the only thing that matters.
Tremenda Nota – The Havana Times (Spanish version at El Toque): Women aren’t just fighting for representation in American baseball but in baseball worldwide. Melissa Blanco is the first woman in decades to announce games for Serie Nacional de Béisbol. She’s only managed to hit the radio airwaves so far, but she is representative of the spaces that need to be made for women in the world’s greatest sport. Blanco’s story shouldn’t be special, but it is because we still have a global game of baseball where women are relegated to playing second fiddle.
Michael Baumann – The Ringer: The Boston Red Sox are attempting to trade Mookie Betts and David Price to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Unless you’re a Dodgers fan there’s no way you shouldn’t view the trade as anything but bad for MLB. The Red Sox trading Betts represents a tipping point in the relationship that teams are supposed to have with their fans. This is a team telling its fans the quiet parts out loud. John Henry, Red Sox owner, and Chaim Bloom, Red Sox General Manager, have let every Red Sox fan know that there is no contract between team and fan to provide the best team possible. There’s just a contract between owner and money for said owner to acquire as much money as possible.
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Lead photo courtesy of Maddie Meyer – Getty Images