Twitter Q&A-fashioned product

Have I previously mentioned my feelings for Oreos here or is Gerald just making an educated guess?

Either way, Oreos are f#@$ing amazing. If someone offered me Oreos before a social gathering — let’s say a wedding, something where there’ll be lots of pictures — I’d first ask if they’re Double Stufs. And then regardless of the answer, I’d probably eat a ton of Oreos.

The only thing that might stop me would be if I knew for a fact there would be amazing food at the wedding and I could conjure up enough will-power to avoid ruining my dinner (or cocktail hour) with cookies. But even if that happened, I’d probably stash a few Oreos in my suit pocket just in case. Wedding cake often sucks, and if there aren’t going to be many other dessert options you’re going to want those Oreos for the ride home.

Of course it’s worth noting that I’m married now and no longer at all dedicated to convincing strangers to make out with me at or after social events. Still, any woman so superficial as to reject a man because of a little chocolate on his teeth doesn’t deserve to love me.

This is a good question, and if I could answer it definitively I’d be… well, smarter than I am currently. I’m never eager to diagnose mental issues in professional athletes that I do not know personally. And I’d remind anyone doing so that players will almost always look less confident and more crazy when they’re not performing. No one appears to have the much-sought closer mentality when he’s blowing leads.

The command issue is an easier one to tackle: Yes, he has a command issue. Parnell has walked 4.1 batters per nine innings for his career and 4.4 on the season. There are plenty of effective relievers who can work in that range, but most of them strike out even more batters than Parnell does — in this season and across his career.

And practically none of those guys allow hits at the rate Parnell does — steadily above 10 per nine innings for his entire career. As Patrick Flood has pointed out, it doesn’t seem to make sense for Parnell to allow so many hits on balls in play, since he generally yields a high rate of groundballs. Tough as it is to believe, it’s still too early in Parnell’s career to say for certain that it will keep up and it’s not an awful run of bad luck (compounded, of course, by the walks).

The most frustrating part about watching Parnell, for me, is the utter predictability of his pitch sequences. I have no good way of quantifying that relative to other pitchers, but I feel like I can almost always guess what’s coming. Part of that is obviously because he really only throws two pitches.

I wonder, though, if there’s something else to Parnell’s much-discussed habit of struggling every time he’s given a more important role. Could it be that by the time Parnell’s role is expanded, he has pitched so well and so often in the middle innings that he’s doomed to fail? He has pitched in 10 games in less than 14 days since Aug. 29, including six times in seven days from Aug. 29-Sept. 4.

Obviously I don’t know that’s the problem. Plus even if it is, a team needs to be able to count on its late-inning relievers to shoulder heavy workloads for certain stretches.

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