500 and 2,000 are important numbers in baseball -- homeruns and hits worthy of the Hall. I don't apply that honor to CodBall, but by the end of 2009 we will complete 500 posts and well over 2,000 comments from readers. When I wrote the first in the summer of 2006, I didn't expect those kinds of numbers.
I recently went back into our archives and dug out a post I wrote shortly after we started but never posted. I dusted it off and decided to post it.
When I originally wrote this post, I was worried about the level of discourse early on in our blog culture. People were beginning to snipe at one another in vulgar ways. I wanted CodBall to be a place where knowledgeable, gentlemanly (and occasionally gentle-womanly) discourse about the highest level of amateur baseball could take place.
Ultimately, I judged correctly that I should stay out of the fray and the fans of the Cape Cod Baseball League would police themselves. I never posted my guidelines for readers.
So take these now with a grain of salt. They don't rise to the level of policy but still hold up pretty well. From the mind of a very early baseball blogger...
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Last summer (2007), as we got deeper into the Cape season, we noticed that some passionate fans became, well, a little too passionate in their views. For the most part, CodBall reader comments are thoughtful and insightful -- sometimes even humorous.
But occasionally we get a comment that borders on rude, or worse, engages in a sort of press agentry for a single player. When that happens, we either delete or edit the comment. Our goal is to keep this blog as an independent and positive place for fans to question and comment upon the league, its teams and baseball in general.
I've meant for sometime to respond to a few of the criticisms we occasionally get, and so rather than respond separately, here are a few of the criticisms and my responses:
CodBall isn't accurate. Ok, we do make mistakes. We're not a formal media organization with paid reporters, editors and producers. We're rank amateurs. We are careful to poke fun at ourselves and to be clear that we are an "unofficial blog." We don't try to break news (though occasionally we do) and we are not a paper of record. We try to bring news, opinion and analysis to our readers so that you can can question, comment and engage in discourse about something we all love -- baseball, namely summer collegiate baseball. When we get it wrong, we hope to hear from you and we will try our very best to correct our mistakes or to find the correct answers.
A blog is for idiots. Hey, I resemble that remark! I remember some fans of a certain major league baseball team proudly wearing the tag of "idiots." Seriously, our intent is not to be idiots. This blog is a labor of love for us. Notice we don't take advertising (ok, there is one sponsorship that helps to pay for our server costs) and we have no business model. We write this blog and keep it updated because we love baseball and we love the Cape Cod Baseball League. What I think people mean when they say blogs are written by and for idiots is that a blog engages in speculation and uninformed opinion. Correct. Guilty as charged. But we all engage in speculations, don't we? We all sit on bar stools and beach chairs commenting to our friends about what we think, regardless of how informed or correct our opinions are. A blog simply provides a forum for fans to talk with one another about the news, the games, the rosters, the rules, that umpire's call.
CodBall is biased. We certainly are free to be biased, but we're not. I happen to live during the summer nearest to Falmouth and Andrew lives near Hyannis and Y-D. Dave tends toward the East teams. But we really don't have a strong preference about one team v. the other. It's the collection of teams, players and the league that we enjoy. In fact, I would go further to say we aren't even biased toward the CCBL v. other summer college leagues. Yes, we think it's the best summer league but we also will occasionally bring you coverage of other summer collegiate leagues.
So, enough about blogging. We are interested in what you think -- about your favorite players, teams and observations about the league. We'd love to publish your thoughts and insights. Feel free to comment here, or if you want to write an original post for CodBall, we'd love to publish your best writing, commentary and opinion. Email us.