There isn’t much that can depress you more about the human condition than a group of P.R. professionals getting together and talking about their craft. For evidence of that I give you today’s Sports Business Daily feature on the McGwire p.r. strategy. Key points:
- It’s bad to release big news via what is perceived to be a friendly, softball outfit, but it was good that McGwire’s P.R. people and agent already work with MLB Network and Costas;
- It’s obvious McGwire believed what he was saying and it’s obvious that you shouldn’t say what you don’t believe because that’s just spin, but McGwire really screwed up in not telling people what they wanted to hear;
- McGwire’s hour-long, one-on-one interview with Costas was a good idea so he could take all the time he needed to tell his story in his own words, but it was a bad idea because it was too short and didn’t give reporters the chance to ask the questions they wanted to hear McGwire answer.
If I’m ever involved in a scandal I’m going to tweet all of my statements. Can’t go wrong then.
We’re not talking the 100 meters here. We’re talking practical baseball sprinting. That’s defined by the StatCast folks at MLB as “feet per second in a player’s fastest one-second window,” while sprinting for the purposes of, you know, winning a baseball game.
StatCast ranked all players who have at least 10 “max effort” runs this year. I won’t give away who is at the top of this list, but given that baseball’s speedsters tend to get a lot of press you will not be at all surprised. As for the bottom of the list, well, the Angels don’t pay Albert Pujols to run even when he’s not suffering from late career chronic foot problems, so they’ll probably let that one go. I will say, however, that I am amused that the third slowest dude in baseball is named “Jett,” however.
Lately people have noticed some odd things about home run distances on StatCast, suggesting that maybe their metrics are wacko. And, of course, their means of gauging this stuff is proprietary and opaque, so we have no way of knowing if their numbers are off the reservation or not. As such, take all of the StatCast stuff you see with a grain of salt.
That said, even if the feet-per-second stuff is wrong here, knowing that Smith is faster than Jones by a factor of X is still interesting.
All-Star voting ends this Thursday night, just before midnight eastern time. The All-Star teams — at least how they’ll appear before the dozen or two substitutions we’ll get before the game — will be unveiled on Sunday at 7pm on ESPN, just before Sunday Night Baseball.
Which means you still have time to alter these standings, which now stand as the final update before things are set in, well, not stone, but at least some Play-Doh which has been left out of the can too long and is kinda hard to mess with.