Here's my secret for enjoying the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. Watch the games. Cheer for the team you want to win--which in most cases will probably be the underdog, unless you actually went to Duke. And then probably not even then. And in no case should you ever "fill out a bracket" or if you do, you should forget it as soon as you do and never look at it again. That way, you can enjoy Cal-State Bakersfield taking out Oklahoma (for example) without worrying about how it's going to ruin your "bracket." You can enjoy sports more without gambling on them. Really.
- If it weren't for bad luck I'd have no luck at all. Athletics hurler Jarrod Parker broke his right elbow again. He's missed the past two seasons and is now almost certainly going to miss all of 2016.
- The rest of the A's are trying to be supportive of their hard-luck teammate.
- Tyler Kepner has a profile of A's reliever Sean Doolittle and his girlfriend, Eireann Dolan. In particular, Kepner focuses on the willingness of the two to work for potentially unpopular causes. Star Wars does get mentioned once, but that's not one of the unpopular causes.
- Another Oakland pitcher, Australian Liam Hendriks, focuses his attention on animal charities.
- The lawyers for banned Mets reliever Jenrry Mejia are claiming their client is the victim of a conspiracy by MLB. That sounds like the worst mid-70s Robert Redford movie ever.
- Goose Gossage was called into the principal's office (actually manager Joe Girardi and GM Brian Cashman's office) over his angry old man rant. Even after talking to the boss, Gossage doesn't take back anything he said.
- Jeff Passan eviscerates Gossage's rant in "Fire Joe Morgan" style. Passan says Gossage is wrong about baseball's past and baseball's future.
- Craig Calcaterra thinks the war over the "unwritten rules" is already over, even if the fighting continues.
- Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright thinks that it's fine for players "to have fun, but be respectful at the same time." Respectful meaning "whatever Adam Wainwright thinks it means."
- Michael Bradburn wonders what is Canada's relationship is to America's "National Pastime" in the wake of the Blue Jays offseason.
Angels pitcher Jered Weaver will see a specialist after he was diagnosed with a
79 mph fastballmild degeneration in his spine.
- Angels GM Billy Eppler says he's so over the "stats vs scouts" debate and says Mike Scioscia is a lot more open-minded than he's given credit for.
- Ken Rosenthal thinks Andrelton Simmons could improve his hitting now that he's in an organization that won't try to change his approach at the plate.
- Speaking of Simmons, Jeff Sullivan asks "What type of a baseball dork are you?" I really thought I was a hitting dork, but Sullivan's quick test convinced me I'm actually a fielding dork. I put in a little poll below.
- New Rays shortstop Brad Miller has the throwing yips so far this Spring Training. That's not good.
- A quick look at the state of the lawsuit filed by the woman who was hit in the head by a foul ball through the screen at the Pirates-Cubs game last April.
- The Marlins have filed a grievance over the salary of new Nationals AGM Dan Jennings. Marlins gonna Marlin.
- Jack McKeon wants to manage again in 2018 or 2019 so that he can break Connie Mack's record of being the oldest manager ever.
- Joe Girardi says CC Sabathia will have to win a spot in the rotation this spring.
- Girardi also compared Luis Severino to Greg Maddux. And this is a comparison the the young, hard-throwing Maddux that Girardi actually caught and not a euphemism for "soft-tossing righthander that the person making the comp is convinced is going to be a star anyway because Maddux was."
- Derek Jeter will accompany MLB in next week's historic trip to Cuba.
- Tom Verducci thinks that Miguel Sano can be the next Giancarlo Stanton.
- Jayson Stark talks with Braves officials about why Freddie Freeman is still a Brave. He also talks with Freeman about all this.
- August Fagerstrom has some thoughts about Hyun-soo Kim's 0 for 23 start to Spring Training. Kim has gotten three hits since Thursday though.
- The Orioles also hope that Kevin Gausman will finally break Baltimore's bad streak of developing pitchers.
- George Brett thinks that statistics can't measure brains or heart. They can't, but I also can't remember the last baseball game I watched that was won a score of three brains to two hearts.
- A nice photographic tour through a bobbleheads exhibit at the Reds Hall of Fame.
- Since Terry Collins told Yoenis Cespedes to cool it on the cars, we'll just have to settle for staring at Yoan Moncada's new Lamborghini.
- Please check out MLB's new "Spring Time" caps. Please wear sunglasses first though. Here's one of the Cubs' ones, if you're interested in purchasing one.
- Willie Bloomquist announced his retirement with a video on Twitter. He hits a home run, flips his bat and walks away. I wonder if Goose Gossage thinks Bloomquist is embarrassing all white people?
- Speaking of which, Jose Bautista got into a workout battle with the Phillie Phanatic.
- And finally, there have been a lot of stories about players breaking windshields in batting practice this spring, so the fact that Brewers prospect Jacob Nottingham broke one in batting practice wouldn't normally be a big story. Except that he managed to break the windshield of his own car!
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster.