Spring Training Chat, 2032 by Jeremy Blachman February 27, 2012 FanGraphs Chat: Tuesday, February 31, 2032 FanGraphs — It’s another hazy day in the cloud of intergalactic debris, so let’s get chatting! Hayden (NYC) — Best team in the (North) American League, right now? FanGraphs — Gotta be the Rays, coming off six straight pennants. David Price still going strong at 47, and there is no better fan base in the game, now that much of the rest of the continent is uninhabitable. Rays all the way. Tom (Pawnee) — How about that Prince Fielder signing? FanGraphs — I know, who’d have thought he’d age this well? I think thirteen more years is a safe risk, with limb regeneration technology where it is right now. And, the veteran influence is only going to help those young aliens on the way. We may actually see a flag (aside from the Canadian one!) flying over Wrigley before the end of the contract. Logan (Miami Island) — Jeff Mathis, first ballot Hall of Famer? FanGraphs — Assuming the BBWAA doesn’t pull another Greg Maddux and make him wait a year because of the murder accusations, then absolutely. You turn your career around, hit 900 home runs, and you have to be a shoo-in, even with the current gravitational forces. FanGraphs — Shoot, I meant the BBWAE. I keep forgetting, since they split with Mars. Dusty, Dusty Remains of Baker (New Carolina) — The next playoff expansion will be in ___? FanGraphs — 2034. My sources inside the commissioner’s bubble say nothing would thrill him more than celebrating his 100th birthday with a brand new 6th round of postseason play. Good thing November has 72 days! Victor/Victoria (Short Beach) — Mariano Rivera, one more season? FanGraphs — I’m done trying to predict. Wake me from Sleep Mode when he gets to 2000 saves. Jim (New York City-State) — Now that hockey and basketball have merged into one sport, are there any plans for baseball and rugby to do the same? FanGraphs — Not on anyone sonar screen, as far as I’m aware. But stranger things have happened (especially last week, when a Giant Panda was elected Prime Minister of China III, though I should probably keep my political opinions to myself if I don’t want to get zapped). In any case, I think baseball and rugby are at least a decade away from the inevitable merge. Albert (Anaheim) — Nineteen years in an Angels uniform, 800 home runs, 42 touchdowns (great new stat, btw). So when’s my statue being unveiled? FanGraphs — As soon as they can find the natural resources to build it, I have no doubt yours will be first. Whoever said that 9-year, $14 billion extension in 2021 was a mistake is eating a lot of cow these days. 53X277B (North Saturn) — Any chance of a FanGraphs event out here in the far reaches? FanGraphs — If someone wants to sponsor us for fuel costs, we’re game. Our last visit didn’t end well, but the new regime is supposed to be more liberal about these kinds of things, so it’s fine with me. I’ll canvas the rest of the staff and see what we can do. Mason (Combined Dakota) — Bryce Harper for President? FanGraphs — After beating Casey Anthony in the primary, I think it’s his race to lose. Jesus (Nazareth) — 10-team mixed-league 5×5, I’ve trapped Anthony Rendon in my basement, it’s either eat him or my entire family will starve, there’s really nothing getting within 500 miles of us since the apocalypse, I don’t know what to do. FanGraphs — Close call, but you’ve gotta save your family. You have our blessing. FanGraphs — That’s all we have time for this afternoon (and the time machine is on the fritz), so we’ll see you next week. Thanks for chatting, and try to avoid the missile attacks!