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I Refuse To Let The Nerds & Numbers Ruin Baseball For The Rest Of Us (Starting 9 Ep. 008 with Ryan Dempster)

Back again real quick to promote today's episode because it's that good. Stay with me for a second guys. We get deep on some of the most nuanced aspects of the cat-mouse game between the pitcher and the hitter. If there's a conversation like that on the internet already, let me know. Otherwise skip to the 50 minute mark above to get a ridiculously close look at the kind of decisions pitchers make each at-bat of each start. I consider myself pretty knowledgeable about the game but again I find myself just soaking up the insight. 

I'm a lot of things right now. Mostly amped because I'm about to go do some man on street in Wrigley and fuck with some Cardinals fans pretty bad. But also because the Starting9 reboot is coming together how I hoped when we initially started talking about it. Not just your run of the mill questions about the 2022 season or some repeatable conversations about staying focused and hungry. I've logged too many hours listening to sports talk radio to go down that path of boredom.

What we want to do is make it more about the culture and game of baseball. Not just at the MLB level but a broader look at the game. The stuff that makes it interesting outside of the statistics and reporting that fuels so much dialogue in the game today. Fuck that stuff. I want to hear about the social dynamic of having to drill Moises Alou at the height of his rage. I'd rather get into why sometimes you have to drill a guy like A-Rod even if you're not about drilling people. Or how do teams come together on long road trips and how does that compare to travel-ball when you're a teenager? And what about the relationship between minor leaguers and big leaguers on rehab starts? How do you celebrate a no hitter and what do you say to the reliever that just blew your quality start? 

I can keep going but the point is pretty steady here. There's so much more to baseball than uncovering the next statistical advantage and setting the optimal fantasy lineup. And it's my professional opinion baseball players are "stale" to the media because they're not talking about the right stuff. All baseball players do is spend time at the ballpark living and breathing the game. The absolute last thing they want to do is sit around and talk about it. 

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Maybe we can approach things differently with Starting 9. At least that's the goal as we get the show rolling. On that front, you guys are formally invited to join us on the ride. We got new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday morning and it's my opinion they don't suck. In fact it's been quite good. 

Shoutout Jake. 

Follow the show here. 

For more blogs from Starting 9 today:

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