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Terrerobytes: Waiting for Adam LaRoche

Plus: Erik Johnson may not be alone, breaking news gets democratized further, and the Twins hire an ex-White Sox to lead their pitching staff

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It sure would be nice if the White Sox would confirm the Adam LaRoche signing already, because there are a few things that are keeping me from forming a full opinion about it ... besides an all-day bonspiel on Saturday, anyway.

The good news? As our discussion about the move largely recognized, there really isn't a way to arrive to a complete understanding at the moment, because this seems to be a signing that makes other moves possible.

But one particular answerable question I have: How much first base do the Sox envision LaRoche playing? Because if this puts Jose Abreu on a designated hitter career track earlier than anticipated ... well, I'm not quite sure how to feel about that.

In the meantime, here are some other things I'm reading and thinking about:


Erik Johnson's season still ranks as one of the strangest developments of the last season for the White Sox. It ranks as one of the most underdiscussed, too, although with Johnson's general reticence and the White Sox's insistence of good health despite indications to the contrary, maybe there just isn't that much to say.

If Johnson's struggles stem from frustration and disappointment, then he's not alone. Other teams -- the Red Sox, the Pirates and the Cubs -- saw more highly touted prospects fall flat on their faces, and Pittsburgh GM Neal Huntington has a theory:

"The gap between Triple-A and the big leagues has never been larger," Pittsburgh general manager Neal Huntington said. "You hear it from scouts. You hear it from major-league guys. You hear it from minor-league guys. That’s our biggest challenge — that gap becomes readily apparent when you see guys who have been dominant in Triple-A come up and struggle in the big leagues." [...]

"In the past, you had the Sam Horns and the Kevin Maases of the world who could would come up and light the world on fire," Huntington said. "In this day and age, man, we’ve got a full advance report on a guy the day he steps in the big leagues because of the accessibility of minor-league video, because of the information that’s out there, both from a subjective standpoint of advance [scouting] and from an objective standpoint of data."

Some of the biggest moves of the last two weeks were broken by teams and random dudes (including a couple of middle-school kids). That's not new -- White Sox fans remember "k0na" beating the media to a few big moves -- but Ben Lindbergh wonders if it's an acceleration of a process that will inspire the big-name reporters to focus their attention elsewhere.

In another sports media story that may interest me more than others, Wendy Thurm wonders aloud about her Twitter demographics showing an 89-11 male-female split, despite attempts to generate sports conversations with other women.

(That's oddly comforting to me in one respect, because @SouthSideSox has a 91-9 split, and I'd probably be wondering if it's anything I did if I had nothing to compare it to.)

The answer isn't as simple as "more sports fans are men," because women who talk about sports have to put up with a lot of crap, and it may not be worth the trouble. But it's also possible that such demographic studies undercount women (for instance, if the algorithm for determining gender counts sports talk as a likely male activity).

There must be something about four-year, $56 million deals. Ones that aren't for Mark Buehrle, anyway.

The word on the street is that the Twins are hiring former White Sox pitcher Neil Allen as their new pitching coach, which is kind of funny. Rick Anderson held that job forever, even though he was an advocate for pitching to contact well past its expiration.

Meanwhile, the only specific thing I know about Allen is that he holds the White Sox franchise record for highest nine-inning game score without a strikeout (83, set on July 20, 1986).