The San Francisco Giants' face masks have an interesting backstory

August 23, 2020

This is a story about pandemic baseball and the surprisingly difficult task of identifying a specific piece of equipment used by multiple coaches and players on the field this season.

As a San Francisco Giants fan, I noticed that multiple members of the on-field personnel have been wearing a distinctive face mask. Manager Gabe Kapler, coach Alyssa Nakken, infielder Pablo Sandoval, and others wear a mask with straps that go around the back of the wearer’s neck and over their head, rather than looping around the ears. On Kapler, in particular, since he does mid-game interviews, I could see the fabric pulled tight against his face, showing the outline of his lips and nose.

MLB teams' empty-ballpark decorations, ranked

August 17, 2020

If you’re an MLB Extra Innings subscriber and you’ve flipped through multiple games in a day, you may have noticed that in the absence of fans Major League Baseball teams have dressed up the seating areas of their ballparks in a variety of ways. The following is a brief overview of each team’s approach, roughly organized from minimalist to maximalist.

MLB's cascading failures were foreseeable

August 2, 2020

By the time you read this, MLB’s season could be cancelled, because the league’s leadership, like much of the country, apparently can’t be bothered to take the coronavirus seriously enough to make real progress in holding it off, let alone suppressing it. Also, it was all foreseeable.