Annie and Nuke break up

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It’s Christmas Eve, so there isn’t a lot of real baseball news happening, so forgive me for delving into quasi-quasi-quasi baseball news.  The news: Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins, who met on the set of my most favoritist baseball movie of all time, have broken up after 22 years together as a couple. Such a shame. Among the reasons for their breakup:

1. She got wooly and he wouldn’t try a little tenderness;

2. Lollygagging;

3. Robbins had been living a lie; he never liked Walt Whitman;

4. If you’re young and in love and you let fungus grow on your shower shoes, your girlfriend thinks you’re colorful. After you’ve been together for 20 years, she’ll just think you’re a slob;

5. Sarandon got mad at Robbins “respecting the streak,” if you know what I mean;

6. Sarandon’s rejection of most Judeo-Christian ethics and her failure, within the framework of the realtionship, to be monogamous;

7. No real reason, actually: it was just a question of quantum physics, molecular attraction, and timing.

8. A relationship may be like a religion full of magic, cosmic truth, and the
fundamental ontological riddles of our time, but it’s also a job.

9. Robbins never learned that you shouldn’t listen to what a woman says when she’s in the throes of passion. They say the darndest things.

10. While they shared some values, Robbins, unlike Sarandon, believed in the top of a woman’s back, the cut fastball, cheese, cheap bourbon and really enjoyed the novels of Susan Sontag. He believed that the mob and the CIA killed Kennedy. While not a fan of Astroturf and the designated hitter, he’s really a staunch federalist and believed that those are matters best left to the states. He believed in hitting it off the end of the bat, hard-core pornography, opening his presents on Christmas Eve instead of Christmas morning and he believed
in short, pecky little kisses that were over with quickly and allowed you to get on with your next three days.

Oh well. Sometimes you win. Sometimes you lose. Sometimes it rains.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.