Sunday, April 18, 2004

Blogged Down | Welcome to all who have come here after reading Barry Sparks's story about baseball blogs in today's York Sunday News. Sparks was kind enough to include Shallow Center in his piece and to quote me as well. He surveyed an impressive array of bloggers -- I can't speak for the rest, but I answered his questions by e-mail -- to give south central Pennsylvanians an overview of what we do and why we do it. Now if only his story had included links to the blogs... .

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the recent roundup of the baseball blogosphere by Slate's Josh Levin. No, Shallow Center wasn't mentioned, but the excellent clearinghouse was, and if you can get past the occasional nose-in-the-air tone -- "Even the Twins have five blogs devoted to them. Can you believe it?" (note: not a direct quote) -- Levin offers some very cogent thoughts on why "[b]aseball and blogging are a perfect match":

Each day of the 162-game season brings a new torrent of information -- another round of at-bats, boneheaded managerial moves, minor-league games, and scoreboard dot races -- that requires instant analysis. There's also a huge body of baseball knowledge on the Web, ready to be mined for cross-referential links: local papers, statistical encyclopedias, analytical clearinghouses, other baseblogs. For fans living far from their favorite team, and without the time or inclination to order MLB Extra Innings, a dedicated blogger is local color -- a friend who can't help but complain about the local TV announcers and a beat writer who doesn't lard his copy with boring player quotes.

Finally, the Gray Lady herself checks in today with a look at Ana Marie Cox's gossipy D.C.-centric blog Wonkette. The piece is a bit stiffly written (e.g. "Despite some criticism, Ms. Cox's knack for mockery has attracted quite a following") and somehow manages to portray Cox as both a profane and irreverent outsider whose lack of credentials gives her blog street cred as well as a Washington insider connected enough to have Newsweek's Michael Isikoff, former Clinton flack Joe Lockhart, Slate political blogger Mickey Kaus, and former Howard Dean spokeswoman Tricia Enright attend a party celebrating the launch of her blog last month. Um, which is it?


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