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HDWEB: Brian Roberts, starting 2B for the Yankees means panic time

In today's HOW DARE WE ENJOY BASEBALL: cuddling with puppies, panicking with the Yankees, trying to make sense of Craig Kimbrel and Rick Porcello, and more!

Good morning HDWEB'ers, it's February 18th and baseball is better than the Olympics. Here are the very best baseball things to inspire, entertain, enlighten, and amuse.

If you have ideas or suggestions, send 'em my way at @justinbopp.

The regular season can't get here fast enough for this lil' guy


  • Brian Roberts will be Yankees' starting second baseman - This makes me more queasy than any mawkish Jeter send-off you might imagine happening all season long. And I actually like Roberts! Just thinking about the concussions, the injuries, that I can't remember his last game... If you're holding out hope, remember: Kelly Johnson is the backup. I wonder how Cano is doing right about now.

This is smart:

  • Craig Kimbrel at His Most Unfair -- FanGraphs Baseball -- Jeff Sullivan touches on signature significance with Kimbrel's first three seasons, suggesting that his remarkable success probably means something ... not that you shouldn't stop worrying about that kind of money for a closer.

Craig Kimbrel may never pull off another streak of 41 strikes without a ball in play. He may never pitch like he’s already pitched in his first 3+ seasons. The Braves, of course, hope that he will, but relievers are unreliable and arms like this can be tragically injury-prone.

Yet Kimbrel did do this, and it’s in the books, and it’s worthy of recognition. No matter what happens from here, try not to forget what Craig Kimbrel has been.

He’s been a closer who’s allowed an OPS a hundred points lower than Mariano Rivera. The primary thing working against the Braves here is there aren’t supposed to be pitchers like this.


    The Royals over/under for 2014 is 85.5 Wins?

    Uniform obsequiousness


    Baseball history is fun


    • That's a letter written to all-time baseball great Honus Wagner from admirer President Eisenhower. It's neat because I had no idea Honus Wagner lived into the 1950s, and now I'm imagining Derek Jeter living into the 2070s and Sasha Obama writing him something similar from her spot in the Oval Office. (h/t r/baseball)
    • Salary arbitration: A necessary evil - True Blue LA -- Eric takes an inside look at the salary arbitration process through those who have experienced it on both sides, with extensive quotes from Don Mattingly and GM Ned Colletti.


    • It's college baseball, yes, but look! There it is! BASEBALL! This first web gem of 2014 comes to us from our LSU blog, And the Valley Shook.

    Have suggestions or want to be featured in HDWEB? Send links to Justin at @justinbopp and hashtag #HDWEB.

    More from SB Nation MLB:

    Craig Kimbrel's extension a win-win signing for Braves

    Daily inspirational texts from the Astros’ skipper

    Arbitration: A necessary evil

    Derek Jeter, the last captain of New York

    Remembering former All-Star and manager Jim Fregosi