baseball stats abbreviations Hank Aaron, 1,000-home-run hitter? Check. A participant who could have emerged from the Atlantic Ocean? Double examine. In lately without MLB, our employees writers went on a deep dive of baseball’s most complete database to seek out issues that remind them of what makes the game so great.

Baseball-Reference is the eighth marvel of the world, and admittedly, it’s superior to some of the better-known seven, too. Who wants the Colossus of Rhodes, in any case, when you might have the participant web page for Tuffy Rhodes, onetime house run king of Japan?

One of many qualities that defines baseball’s nook of the internet is the quirkiness inherent in appreciating its historical past. A lot of that pleasure is tied in with browsing Baseball-Reference pages, which expose bizarre stats and enjoyable names and fantastic accomplishments and all of those quirky histories. Baseball-Reference is already a year-round treat, however in a time absent of actual games—Opening Day was originally slated for Thursday—it becomes counterintuitively much more central for fans: Solely the strangeness can slake our baseball thirst; the one new discoveries can come from mining the depths of already existing pages.

The positioning has extra information obtainable than anybody has time to read, social distancing or not. There are pages for each participant, team, and season; for leagues ranging in skill degree throughout 4 continents; for each potential statistical search a baseball fan would hope to answer. So to have fun the breadth of the location’s riches, we held a miniature draft, picking our 5 favorite B-Ref pages apiece, chosen from wherever on the location. As befits this eighth surprise, we bought bizarre—and in so doing, discovered room for some baseball smiles even when the parks are closed, the mounds just waiting for the first actual pitch of spring. —Zach Kram.

One of the distinctive bits of Baseball-Reference branding is “black ink.” Each time a player leads his league in a statistical category, the number on his page is displayed in daring. If he leads all of Main League Baseball, it’s both bolded and italicized. B-Ref even tracks black ink on a player’s page, with sure classes weighted to emphasize their importance, and publishes the player’s rating on the backside of his web page as a fast and dirty estimation of his worthiness for the Hall of Fame.

When most statheads talk about players with loads of black ink, they go to favorites from the latest past, like Barry Bonds or Pedro Martínez. But my private favourite smattering of black ink belongs to Rogers Hornsby. The Rajah was a real asshole, God rest his soul, however he might completely rake. If you understand anything about Hornsby, aside from his winning personality, it’s that his profession batting common, .358, is the highest ever for a right-handed hitter and second solely to Ty Cobb total. That undersells his offensive prowess considerably.

That’s proper, from 1920 to 1925, Hornsby led the National League in batting common, OBP, and slugging proportion (and by extension OPS and OPS+) every single yr. Bonds and Ruth swept the triple-slash categories thrice mixed, whereas Hornsby did it six years in a row. As much as I love the nooks and crannies of Baseball-Reference, generally you just need a stats site to play the hits. Actually, in Hornsby’s case.

The 1899 Spiders are the worst workforce in MLB historical past. They are additionally my favourite staff in MLB history. (I adore them so fervently that early on in my relationship, my girlfriend purchased me a vintage Spiders T-shirt as a birthday present.) And their Baseball-Reference web page exhibits why.

The backstory here is that before the season, the Spiders’ homeowners additionally purchased the St. Louis Perfectos (later the Cardinals) and traded all their good players—together with Cy Younger and two other future Hall of Famers—to St. Louis to try to type a superteam. But that context isn’t instantly obvious on the web page. One of many solely indications of something strange comes at the high of the page, when B-Ref gives an choice to see the Spiders’ earlier season however not their next. That’s as a result of the Spiders franchise folded after 1899.

The other indication of something strange is the information itself; B-Ref is, at the start, a treasure trove of data. As an example, each group page features a quick visual illustration of the game-by-game results. Inexperienced means a win, crimson means a loss, and the height of the bar signifies the margin of victory. Right here is the Spiders’ graph of 20 green bars and 134 red.

Each page is crammed with storytelling statistics. So it’s easy to see that, say, Jim Hughey was the Spiders’ ace but completed the season with a 4-30 record, and that the pitching employees as an entire finished with a 6.37 ERA and didn’t function a single player with a league-average mark or better.

The Spiders also exemplify the uncertainty of early baseball record-keeping, which wasn’t practically as exact as it's immediately. Six gamers have a “?” subsequent to their names, which signifies that baseball historians are uncertain of their handedness on the plate. They usually highlight the wonders of old-timey baseball names, with players like Sport McAllister, Ossee Schrecongost, and Highball Wilson. Harry Colliflower was on this group, too, with a fun name and a hilarious participant photo—another delight of early-years Baseball-Reference—to boot.

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