The blessyouboys.com team enters the 2014 season as simply the best team on the internet when it comes to covering your Detroit Tigers. The best place to chat with fellow Tiger fans during games, the best game previews, best post game analysis, as well as some excellent analysis using both traditional and advanced statistics, not to mention Tiger humor, is all right here on BYB.
So here is the moment you’ve all been waiting for: BYB’s lineup for the 2014 season.
Leading off is our player-manager and fearless leader, Kurt Mensching. Living just a couple of miles from the north pole, Kurt directs the traffic for BYB when he’s not writing a column for the Detroit News, or managing things from his virtual front office at SB Nation. He is an alumnus of Michigan State and Michigan Tech, depending on what sport you’re talking about at the time, and his best asset is Donner, a German Shepherd who brings him the love that he so deeply desires from BYB readers.
Batting second is our Co-Editor in Chief, "Big Al" Beaton. Al brings you breaking news, and by far the most thorough post-game analysis of every Tiger game that you will find in print or on the internet. He is also the host of the BYB podcasts with a voice so smooth, that he makes Dan Dickerson sound like Jim Price. There is no truth to the rumor that he was named after Al Kaline, but you could be forgiven if you feel like calling him "virtual Mr. Tiger".
Rob Rogacki is our heavy hitter. The artist formerly known as "Handsome Rob" is a deputy editor covering breaking news, analysis, and the best game previews for every Tiger game. Rob resides in Washington DC and has begun his career as a physical therapist, where he secretly is consulted by Dr James Andrews, prescribing Tommy John surgery for enemy pitchers, whether they need it or not.
Batting clean up is the enforcer, Allison Hagen. If you don’t know where she gets the nickname, try stepping out of line in her game thread and you’ll find out. Alli has been sent to Columbus, behind enemy lines, where they have learned to leave her alone about rooting for Detroit. She also organizes the annual BYB meet-up each summer and is a connoisseur of fine whiskey.
Melissa Heyboer, a deputy editor at BYB, ties it all together, bringing you links to every Tiger story that’s worth reading. You don’t even have to surf the net, just go to BYB in the morning, check out Melissa’s links story, and it’s all there, with helpful commentary on why or whether you should care to read the stories. Melissa is a recovering Lions’ writer, and is the brains behind at least half of all the good ideas we have at BYB.
Our designated hitter is Catherine Slonksnis, who will be bringing real, live interviews from Comerica Park. BYB has been granted access this year to the field, the players and club personnel, and Catherine will be there, at the ballpark doing interviews and giving us the latest scoop on all things Tigers. She has not yet been granted clubhouse access, for fear that team personnel, most notably Brad Ausmus, may not be able to control himself.
Greg Eno is new to BYB, but has been on the Detroit sports scene since Moby Dick was a minnow. Greg has covered every sport in the Detroit sports scene. He brings a well rounded knowledge of all sports and a historical perspective of sports events in Detroit. Greg’s website is here at Gregeno.com. He’ll be providing more breaking news and analysis for BYB. Most importantly, Al and I are just glad to have someone our own age to play with.
Out in left field, we have Phil Coke’s Brain, one of the funniest and wittiest writers in the Tiger blogosphere. From flow charts that show you how to think, to totally off the wall analysis out of left field, PCB brings you the humorous slant to the Tiger season. It’s been written that the only thing Phil Coke is good for is his brain and, well, it’s true.
BYB’s top prospect is Jordan Gorosh, the resident expert on every prospect in the Tiger organization, as well as around the minor leagues. When it comes to information about players in the Tiger farm system, Jordan is the go-to guy. He’s currently profiling and breaking down the top 30 Tiger prospects, in this series. Jordan was last found in Florida, personally scouting the best and the brightest prospects.
The moderators at BYB are NC Dee, Les Lim, and David Olvera. You won’t necessarily notice their work because, well, they have already fixed it by the time you see it. You know how some other websites have people constantly sniping at each other? Well we don’t have much of that, thanks to the work of our mods.
Our shortstop is John McGeehan, who joined the BYB team last season. John brings analysis and breaking news from the trenches of his basement. We put him at shortstop for his brilliant defense of Jim Leyland, plus the fact that he hits better than Alex Gonzalez (Ed.: maybe not after yesterday!). He is a personal fan of Brandon Inge.
Hook Slide is -- you guessed it -- our speed on the bases. He brings a humorous perspective that any Tiger fan can relate to, usually with a very methodical, step-by-step approach to understanding and appreciating various apects of the game of baseball and related events, like this recent guide to enjoying the baseball season. As you can see, very entertaining and not to be missed. We picked him up at the trade deadline for a blogger to be named later. He has been known to disappear for months at at a time, which is perfectly okay.
You might think that Jon Erkkila was brought to BYB just because he’s a Yooper and a Packer Fan, but that’s only partially true. Jon is here to bring some much needed balance to the BYB lineup. Some of us are fairly short and Jon is like eleventeen feet tall. He’s already planning his next triple Iron man triathlon once he finishes up his P-90 X warm up. He’s usually the one who talks us down off the proverbial ledge when DD lets key players go for spare parts.
Glenn Wilson is the smartest and most popular writer at BYB. Every comment he writes is rec’d multiple times within a matter of seconds. He can pull stats out of nowhere that nobody dare to challenge, settling any argument on the spot. He can tell you the square root of any player’s wOBA off the top of his head. He patented the baseball glove. He is also a dog whisperer, and is the only person on earth who can out last Buddy in a game of fetch. He is... the most interesting Tiger fan in the world!
Finally, there is moi, Tigerdog. I get the name from my beloved dog, Tiger (R.I.P.). He was my idol. Basically, I’m just a little kid with a big mouth who loves the Tigers. I have a law practice here in Orange County, CA, that sometimes interferes with my blogging, but I manage to juggle the two by focusing on contracts, even after every player is signed for the season. I can tell you all about the collective bargaining agreement, how many options a player has left, and how to calculate RZR and wOBA. They don’t call me the "king of minutiae" for nothing. So I mix that up and come out with a different sort of analysis that readers inexplicably can’t resist.
So there you have it, the 2014 BYB lineup. We're all amped and ready for another big season of Tiger baseball. Remember that you can write your own stories as a fan post and share them with BYB readers whenever you feel like writing about the Tigers.
You can follow the BYB staff members on twitter here:
BYB -- @blessyouboys
Kurt Menching -- @BYBKurt
Al Beaton -- @BigAlBYB
Rob Rogacki -- @BYBRob
Allison Hagen -- @norunsupport
Melissa Heyboer -- @MelissaHeyboer
Catherine Slonksnis -- @cslonksnis
Greg Eno -- @GregEno
Phil Coke's Brain -- @PhilCokesBrain
Hook Slide -- @HookSlideBYB
NC Dee -- @deenazee
David Olvera -- @parttimesloth
John McGeehan -- @johnmcgeehan
Jon Erkkla -- @Yooper_IA
Patrick OKennedy -- @Tigerdog_1