Last night was another really successful book club meeting, both in terms of attendance and participation.  Thanks a lot to everyone who came out and contributed to the conversation.

I think the main take away that we all got from our discussion last night about Dirk Hayhurst and his book The Bullpen Gospels was that it was probably either Jeremy Accardo or Scott Downs who threatened his life.  I’m kidding of course.  We all know it was B.J. Ryan.

Beyond the murder mystery speculation, there was a fairly wide range of opinions on the book, and I was really impressed by how thoughtful the arguments were on each topic.  Heading in, I was a little worried that the book wouldn’t lend itself to as much conversation as Moneyball did just because there’s a whole lot less baseball theory being written about in The Bullpen Gospels, and a whole lot more about personal struggles.  But thankfully, those in attendance proved my fears to be unfounded.

I think that if the club came to any consensus last night it was over the theme of doubt in Hayhurst’s book.  I know it sounds incredibly corny, but just as he had to overcome doubt in his baseball career to become a true pitcher, he also had to overcome it in his own life to become a real man.  That statement sounds so much better after a couple of drinks at the bar.

For our next book club, we’re going to be reading The Extra 2% by Jonah Keri.  The book goes on sale today, and be sure to snap it up quickly because we’ll be holding our next meeting in less than three weeks on Monday, March 28th.  Why the rush?  Well, Mr. Keri will be in town to do some promotion for the book and has kindly agreed to stop by and answer some questions for us on that date.  Get ready to nerd it up large.

And The Rest

Manny Ramirez had the day off yesterday and he still showed up at training camp at eight in the morning.  No one is sure if that’s because he’s dedicated or because he didn’t know what day it was.

Domonic Brown’s hand surgery will keep him out four to six weeks.

Could eating chemically injected beef cause a positive drug test? It’s About The Money Stupid takes a look at the case of the light hitting shortstop Lainer Bueno who was recently suspended by MLB and released by the St. Louis Cardinals.

Barry Bonds will have to face the testimony of other baseball players during his upcoming trial, which will also see the prosecution rely on the former slugger’s hat and shoe size as evidence.  My mind has already been made up: this trial is an outlandish waste of time.

The sad travails of Joel Zumaya continue with yet another doctor’s opinion.

For the record, Bengie Molina is not retired, but it doesn’t sound as though he’s interested in signing on with a team for a mere Minor League deal.

Chris Carpenter is still having hamstring issues and is likely to miss his next start.

How much of Rafael Soriano’s success has had to do with luck?  Are we missing something in analyzing the Yankees set up man?

Joe Torre is kicking ass and taking names in his new job with MLB, already firing three different executives.  Word on the street is that he’s also convinced Dodgers executive Kim Ng to leave Los Angeles and come work for MLB.

No concussion is the same, and that has doctors worried.

Surprisingly, Neftali Feliz would rather be the team’s closer than a starter in the Texas Ranger’s rotation.  It’s like an actor who doesn’t want to direct.

Brandon Webb is ready to face real live hitters again.

The Florida Marlins have already sold out a section of their new baseball park, for games in 2012.

Finally, MLBTR takes a look at the game’s highest paid players from last season, ten seasons ago, and twenty seasons ago.