November 7, 2006
To keep or not to keep Alex Rodriguez? That is the question facing Brian Cashman. In the New York Times (registration required), Tom Peyer and Hart Seely debate the pros and cons of trading Alex Rodriguez, with hilarious allusions to the debate over Iraq war policy. "Stay the course" with A-Rod or "cut and run"? (Hat tip to Daniel Drezner.) It basically comes down to whether you think sustained excellent performance is more important than coming through in clutch situations. Generally speaking, I'm inclined toward the former side, but in this case letting A-Rod go might send a signal to other teams to be wary of overpaying superstars.
Based on the excellent photos in John Pastier's book Historic Ballparks, the Crosley Field diagram has been revised. Basically, the whole thing has been rotated about two degrees, so the center field fence is not perpendicular to the home-plate-through-second-base line. That alone helps reconcile various anomalies. Additional "dynamic" diagram versions are pending arrival of the new edition of Philip Lowry's Green Cathedrals.
Also, I corrected the distance markers in right side of the scoreboard in Ebbets Field, which were 318 feet from home plate, not 315 feet. Thanks to John Pastier for calling this to my attention. I'm still not sure about the precise configuration of center field prior to 1932, however.
The D.C. United soccer team had the best record in all of MLS going into the playoffs, but they choked at on their home turf on Sunday as the New England Revolution prevailed, 1-0. Once again, RFK Stadium was the scene of grim frustration after an early season of high expectations. A few miles to the east in FedEx Field, meanwhile, the Redskins pulled off one of the most bizarre last-second miraculous victories I had ever seen. It's about time Washington area fans got a break!