Listen, we know it's tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage, and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day. Trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk just isn't easy. It's okay, though, we're going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning, and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end, or at least until after you subscribe to the newsletter.
Yesterday, ESPN unveiled a long feature on Bryce Harper in which the young superstar says he’s out to change the game. Specifically, he brought the ridiculousness of unwritten rules back into the forefront, discussing how "tired" the game is because of them. He brought up how the sport doesn’t have their own versions of Cam Newton or Steph Curry right now, but they’re coming. Every year, more young players are being added to the player pool, and more and more often they are the expressive type. In a somewhat related rant, he let us all know that he doesn’t care what you call him. You’re not going to change him.
A little later on in the day, some comments came out from Hall of Famer Goose Gossage. They were relatively shocking comments, not really due to the message but rather how he went about delivering that message. In particular, he singled out Jose Bautista, who has been a popular target among the old-school crowd after his epic bat flip last postseason. It wasn’t only Bautista, though. Gossage had choice words for Yoenis Cespedes and nerds everywhere, too. Gossage would eventually be given a chance to walk back his comments a bit. It did not go well.
There’s no denying that this is a conversation that gets tiring. It feels like we’re having it every other week. With that being said, it’s important for the sport’s place in the national landscape. While baseball certainly isn’t dying, as some may have you believe, it clearly could be doing better in terms of attracting young fans. A different attitude towards emotion will certainly help with that. Kids — and many adults, for that matter — are going to be much more entertained if players are allowed to celebrate after big plays without fear of getting plunked. The league is lucky it has a young phenom like Harper, as well as all of the other young, charismatic players coming into the game. The league will only get more popular as it gains more Harpers and loses more Gossages.
- Gossage also had some questions about how parents are supposed to explain Ryan Braun to their children. Luckily, we’re here to help, Goose.
- Kansas City is doing everything it can to keep its championship core around, but it won’t matter if they can’t build a new, younger core.
- A.J. Reed is one of the more exciting potential rookies this year, but arguably his most impressive talent involved Cracker Barrel.
- Formerly a top prospect, Jarrod Parker hasn’t been able to pitch in the majors since 2013. He suffered yet another setback yesterday.
- How are the Orioles going to make their defense work after adding Pedro Alvarez instead someone who can play outfield?
- A lot was made of the Yankees not signing a free agent this winter, and for good reason. Did they make a mistake by not jumping into the bargain bin?
- Johnny Cueto is probably a good pitcher! Cueto might also start being a bad pitcher at any moment! Life is scary!
- Phillies fans have big expectations for Aaron Nola. Nola has had a rough start in spring training. You know the rest.
- The Rockies’ NFL counterpart is coming off a Super Bowl victory. Now, the MLB team is getting some help from them in the mental health department.
- Tim Lincecum remains unsigned, and the Marlins may try to use him out of the bullpen. They just need to make sure they don’t get kicked out of his throwing session.