First, I want to thank Brett for doing this feature for as long as he did. He did it purely to make this site a better place by keeping you better informed, which is a sharp contrast to me as I'm hoping to turn this thing into a seven-figure movie deal. But Brett had his own style and I have mine, so I hope you'll accept my approach to stories around the league as well as you did Brett's. I also know that Brett won't be a stranger around here either.
One thing I would like to know in the comments is what type of stories you want me to cover, and from what sources. If I'm missing anything or there are sites that I'm not sourcing that you think I should be, let me know.
The news is a bit slow over the New Year. There are a lot of "New Year's Resolutions" articles where writers come up with resolutions for each team. I'm not linking to them because I think they're dumb: both the resolutions and the articles.
However, I did compete in my first organized 5k run on New Year's Day. This wasn't a "New Year's Resolution" as getting in better shape is something I've been working on since August. I was happy with my finish as it was a personal best for me. I finished 14th in my age group. I won't say how many people were in my age group except to say it was "More than 15." I will admit that a 70 year old woman smoked me by seven minutes. She probably has 60 years more experience than I do.
- If you're as old as I am and you can remember the 1980s, you probably remember a shortstop for the Pirates named Sam Khalifa. He was a young, good-glove, no-hit shortstop who played part time for three years. The New York Times takes a look at Khalifa, his life, career, and the murder of his father 23 years ago. While a man is now on trial for the murder, there's a long way to go before one can say the case is "solved." Closed perhaps, but not solved. Oh, and there's a possible terrorist connection. It's definitely worth reading.
- Following up on the lead story from Brett's final article, Torii Hunter is claiming he was misquoted. Craig Calcaterra is dubious of Hunter's claim.
- The Royals go dumpster-diving by signing Miguel Tejada and Endy Chavez to minor league contracts. Both were with Baltimore last season, although Chavez had a .239 OBP in 169 plate appearances and Tejada never made it out of Triple-A Norfolk. Still, it's the kind of low-risk gamble a team like the Royals should be making.
- Following up on sad news from a former Cub, Ryan Freel's family is donating his brain tissue to be tested for chronic traumatic encephalopathy. While C.T.E. has been a major issue in football the last few years, Freel's case may show that baseball is not isolated from the issue. Freel's step-dad estimates that he had as many as fifteen concussions over the course of his baseball career.
- Brett Myers has signed with Cleveland. He's expected to be a starter for the Indians.
- John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer is choosing not to vote for the Hall of Fame this year. At least he's not sending in a blank ballot. One wonders if he'd be making this stand if Barry Larkin was still on the ballot, however.
The Iowa Hawkeyes fell short against Indiana in Men's Basketball.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster.