Archive for March, 2004
As many of you may have noticed, OBM has been going through some difficulty posting daily for much of the last year, due to technical and, for the most part, internet access difficulties. I have started to get the feeling that this is an issue that needs to be addressed, and as my life and work demands are not going to change in the near-term, the way to do so is to inject some new life into what I’m doing here. The question of how to do that seems, to me, to be fairly obvious, as evidenced by the success of the web-site consolidation that’s been going on amongst so many of the best writers out there.
Well, I’m not going to jump in with anyone else, as I feel pretty strongly about the OBM brand, as it were. Instead, I am extending an invitation for one or two writers to join OBM. I envision a scenario where as many as, say, three of us would post about the Giants or baseball as we see fit, on any subject, whenever the mood strikes us. I’m sure there would be some details to be hashed out, but I believe the format of the site will support such an approach, and if not, well, at least we can say we tried.
Anyway, I don’t care if you already have a site or are just thinking about starting one, send me an email if you’re interested, and we’ll see if we can’t flesh something out that works.
The SF Giants added some desperately needed pitching depth by sending two low level prospects to the Brewers for two actual human beings yesterday. I gotta tell you, I was fairly alarmed at the state of the team’s pitching as it was; adding Dave Veres and Wayne Franklin, two pitchers deemed expendable by the freakin’ Brewers…. This is not good.
Alex Ciepley has decided to join the ranks at the ever-expanding All-Baseball.com world. He will be contributing to the Cub Reporter, working hand in hand with my good friend Christian Ruzich. Congratulations to both men, as the increased exposure will bring Alex the recognition he deserves, and Christian can use the help, as he is busy designing and building a flat-out juggernaut over there.
Anyway, that means I have to send ball talk back to the minors (actually, it will disappear forever), and promote someone from my bench to bat seventh. I have decided to use the Sports Economist, as I feel Skip brings something very different to the game, an important factor. Rounding out my 25 man roster, I have brought up the Bench Coach. A new and frequent writer, Mr. Austin deserves a chance to impress.
… to all who took the time to comment. The boys at Blacktable have decided that OBM should be the Giants site for their preview. I have read the rest of the feedback, and am considering ways to insure that Giants fans find the team coverage they desire while maintaining my own focus areas of interest. Keep posted as I figure out this stuff.
PS…. I hope Jay isn’t pissed. He does have a terrific site.
I guess I am not quite as terrific as I think I am. I found Will Leitch’s Black Table over at Baseball Musings, as Will has put together a preview of the upcoming season, team by team. The interesting thing about his preview is that he has chosen a blog for each team (David says he chose the best for each team) as your source for following the team. Just click on the photos, and away you go.
Well, OBM missed the cut. Now, I’m not an arrogant asshole (at least not all the time), and I know that Jay is a terrific writer, he’s in my roster of Giants blogs. I just felt that I had established myself as the Giants source in the baseball blogosphere. I believe that I am the longest running Giants site that has posted so frequently (barring the several months my site was down due to technical problems). I am fairly certain that I have a reputation as a good writer, I am fairly certain that I have earned a fair amount of respect in the blogosphere. Almost all the writers who did make the cut are the guys who started around the same time I did, they’re guys who have been linking to me since day one, guys like Gleeman, Belth, Ruzich, Manaprin, Bethke, Cossette…. These are my goomba’s, for crying out loud. Everybody but me? How did that happen?
Am I wrong here? Is OBM less of a player than I think? Anyone care to talk back about this, I am all ears. Let me know if I am smoking my own dope or what, because knowledge is power, and if I need to step it up, well, tell me so.
Here I am in Northern California, trying to make arrangements for a new project and a place to live for Ann, Michael and I. I have very limited access to the internet, (obviously), and just wanted to give anybody who cares the opportunity to see where I am.
Go to my friends Cat & Moshe’s website, Fauvearts, and take a look at the local pix they have posted. That’s where I am, and pretty much what I am looking at every day. It’s pretty awesome, actually.
I miss writing every day, hopefully, you guys miss me, too Talk to you soon, as in, when I can.
Dear OBM readers,
John will be away for the next few weeks and, due to telecom challenges, will only be posting sporadically, if at all.
I miss him and I hope you all miss him, so keep checking – he’ll be back soon.
His wife, Ann
I found a new Malcom Gladwell article on the steroids issue, courtesy of a friend. Here it is, it’s called Drugstore Athlete. I haven’t been able to read the whole thing, so I am interested in your backtalk on the subject.
I have been unable to post much lately, so it’s taken me a while to respond to Steve Bonner’s absolutely raving lunatic assault on myself and OBM recently. In this post, I pointed out that Mr. Bonner was echoing the (incorrect) media line that steroids are a harmful and danderous product that needed to be controlled. I used a quote from one of the many doctors who can be found here commenting about the danger, or lack thereof, involved in steroid use. In pointing out that Mr. Bonner “had it wrong,” I wasn’t positing my opinion, I was highlighting one of the many expert opinions that I have unearthered that directly contradict Mr. Bonner (and the mass media) claims, that steroids represent some major hazard.
Additionally, I stated that it is patently absurd to claim that the FDA as it operates today, is some bastion of safety for consumers. All one needs to do is listen to the list of side effects that accompany the numerous prescription drugs that are being advertised during the very broadcasts of baseball that we are watching. Not to mention the numerous cases of drugs that have been rapidly approved for use that have either killed or injured consumers.
Furthermore, Mr. Bonner has accused me of being hypocritical, in that I have at times stated that steroid use should be regulated, or that there are dangers. Well, I am guilty of that. There is no way children should be allowed access to steroids, and un-guided use by anyone is risky. I may have given the impression that my views are a bit wishy washy, as this is a daily blog, sometimes I put it out there asap, instead of fully formed. Nonetheless, I do not believe that steroid use is some great and worrisome tragedy, I do not believe that spurious innuendo should be the norm in the news coverage of the story, and I do not believe that further criminalization will provide one bit of control and/or suppression.
I am a cynic, and I am cynical of a society that chooses to control one type of drug, but not another. I am critical of anyone toe-ing the party line, and I believe this is the error that Mr. Bonner is guilty of. I still like his site, his writing; and welcome his input in the dialogue. I hope he’s not too mad at me though
I took Mark Fainaru-Wada to task in this post, especially chastising him for his “unnamed sources”. He responds to my point of view in this email:
…. First off, we do not take lightly the use of anonymous sources, particularly in a story such as this. This story largely was based upon what we KNEW federal investigators had been told about Bonds and the other athletes; the only reference to an anonymous source in this story was essentially to corroborate what we were reporting the investigators were told. Rest assured, even if my colleague and I were cavalier enough to just throw stuff out there, our editors and lawyers would never let such serious charges into the paper unless they believed in the accuracy of the story. This was an authoritative report and, no, it was not printed to sell newspapers — that’s not my job, though surely it is somebody else’s here at The Chronicle — but rather because we viewed this as an important part of the story to tell.
In large part, the email he’s referring to echoed my post, I feel that the use of such sources in such a big story, was a bit suspect. Nonetheless, Mr. Fainaru-Wada took the time to respond, and his response needs to be respected.