Friday’s five for fighting

Some links for you to "click" whilst waiting for the week-end’s HOT BASEBALL ACTION (which actually starts soon; thank you Wrigley Field tradition!) …

Uh, remember those new pace-of-play procedures that so many people said probably wouldn’t work, or wouldn’t work well enough, or were just stupid because BY GOD BASEBALL SHOULDN’T HAVE A CLOCK? Well, as Jayson Stark reports, the procedures are working wonderfully and everything is awesome (really!).

Jon Roegele’s been doing great work with the strike zone — the real strike zone, that is — and a few weeks ago he found that the real strike zone had contracted just a little this spring. Which seemed like good news! Well, fear not, fans of the Almighty Strikeout; Roegele’s updated the numbers and the strike zone’s now been little different this season than last. (There’s also some great stuff in there about the difference between the strike zones for left- and right-handed batters. Which ain’t right, man.)

If you’re into this sort of thing, I recommend fantasy guru Ron Shandler’s essay about why he won’t/can’t play one of these suddenly huge daily fantasy games: he would wind up going insane (same for me, by the way).

Yeah, you already knew the Royals’ outfielders are great and the Padres’ outfielders are, errmmm, not so great. Hell, we knew all that before the season. Still, it’s fun seeing Ben Lindbergh show everything real pretty-like.

I don’t know much about Bill de Blasio. I did know he’s the mayor of New York. And now I know he’s wildly passionate about not only baseball generally, but specifically about … the Red Sox? I guess the Steinbrothers will have to wait for a few years before demanding a new stadium.