Craig Calcaterra

LONDON - JULY 10:  A heart-shaped candle is pictured among the floral tributes, dedicated to victims of the recent London bomb attacks, in Russell Square, July 10, 2005 in London, England.  Londoners continue to strive for normality as a massive police investigation is underway to track down suspected al-Qaeda bombers after 49 people were killed, and 700 injured, during morning rush hour terrorist attacks, targeted at London?s transport links with 3 bombs exploding on underground trains and one on a bus on July 7.  (Photo By Bruno Vincent/Getty Images)
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The Twins owner wants his new general manager to be “lovable”


Jim Pohlad, owner of the Minnesota Twins, has a lot to think about when he thinks about what kind of general manager he’s looking for to replace the fired Terry Ryan. Does he want an analytical guy with an Ivy League education or someone who came up through the scouting ranks? Is he looking for an old-style GM who runs all baseball operations or a new-style Baseball CEO-type who is more about setting up various systems and departments, of which actual baseball decisions is merely one aspect of it all?

Yep, a lot of big decisions to be made with this sort of hire in the world of 21st century baseball. So what say you, Jim?

“When we had the all-staff meeting, you can see how loved Terry is by our organization,” Pohlad said. “If I had to pick one requirement for somebody going forward, it’s someone that’s lovable. The only way you can be loved is if you’re lovable. We want someone that can ultimately be loved.”

Um. OK. Is that all?

“Technically they have to have the skills and strength and so forth, and have to have the willingness to look an organization and make hard decisions, or come up with ways for improvement.”

Well, as long as we’re being technical I suppose that stuff matters too. In the meantime, NBC Sports has learned the identity of the current favorite for the Twins’ GM job. This is an exclusive report. MUST CREDIT NBC SPORTS:


Chipper Jones is joining Roger Clemens’ retired All-Star team for the NBC World Series

Chipper Jones

That’s National Baseball Congress, not National Broadcasting Company. If it was the latter, I’d be putting the teams together. This is a two-week amateur tournament. The one we talked about yesterday in which Roger Clemens, Adam LaRoche and a bunch of other ex-MLB players are getting together to take on a bunch of amateurs in their 20s.

Now the Geezers have a third baseman:


I also love that Chipper is well aware that there are gonna be some broken old bodies coming out of this. There will be some 420 foot homers — old man strength is a real thing — but Wichita is gonna run out of ice for the these dudes’ knees and you all will be well advised to buy heavy in Advil stock right now.


The fastest pitch in the Statcast era was a ball low and inside

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 09:  Aroldis Chapman #54 of the New York Yankees pitches in the ninth inning against the Kansas City Royals at Yankee Stadium on May 9, 2016 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Last month we witnessed he hardest-hit ball in the two-year Statcast era. It was a Giancarlo Stanton grounder that resulted in a fairly easy 4-6-3 double play.

Last night we saw the fastest pitch in the two-year Statcast era. It was 105.1 miles per hour and, of course, it came courtesy of Aroldis Chapman.

Oh, and it was a ball, low and inside, that Steve Pearce (um, I dunno) J.J. Hardy laid off of because, well, it was not a great pitch:

I continue to stand by my comments from the Stanton thing: Statcast is pretty neat and I’m confident that, at some point, there will a lot of cool things analysts can do with it and which players can, eventually, use to enhance their games. It’s pretty useless to tout speeds and angles and stuff in a vacuum, however, and the social media and broadcasting folks should maybe lay off of it unless and until there are actually some contextualized and relatable things to be drawn from the data which, on its own, is only moderately interesting.

Jered Weaver won a game on Sunday, after all, and he throws about as hard as the kid across the street who plays on the JV team. There’s a little more to it, ya know?