glenn hubbard baseball Hank Aaron, 1,000-home-run hitter? Test. A player who could have emerged from the Atlantic Ocean? Double test. In as of late without MLB, our workers writers went on a deep dive of baseball’s most full database to search out things that remind them of what makes the sport so great.

Baseball-Reference is the eighth wonder of the world, and albeit, 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 page for Tuffy Rhodes, onetime residence run king of Japan?

One of many qualities that defines baseball’s corner of the web is the quirkiness inherent in appreciating its history. A lot of that joy is tied in with looking Baseball-Reference pages, which expose weird stats and fun names and implausible accomplishments and all of those quirky histories. Baseball-Reference is already a year-round treat, but in a time absent of actual games—Opening Day was originally slated for Thursday—it becomes counterintuitively much more central for followers: Solely the strangeness can slake our baseball thirst; the one new discoveries can come from mining the depths of already current pages.

The site has more info available than anybody has time to learn, social distancing or not. There are pages for every participant, staff, and season; for leagues ranging in ability stage across 4 continents; for every potential statistical search a baseball fan would hope to answer. So to have a good time the breadth of the location’s riches, we held a miniature draft, selecting our five favorite B-Ref pages apiece, selected from wherever on the positioning. As befits this eighth wonder, we got weird—and in so doing, discovered room for some baseball smiles even when the parks are closed, the mounds just ready for the first real pitch of spring. —Zach Kram.

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

When most statheads speak about players with lots of black ink, they go to favorites from the current previous, like Barry Bonds or Pedro Martínez. But my personal favourite smattering of black ink belongs to Rogers Hornsby. The Rajah was a real asshole, God relaxation his soul, however he may completely rake. If something about Hornsby, apart from his successful personality, it’s that his career batting common, .358, is the very best ever for a right-handed hitter and second only to Ty Cobb overall. That undersells his offensive prowess somewhat.

That’s proper, from 1920 to 1925, Hornsby led the Nationwide League in batting common, OBP, and slugging proportion (and by extension OPS and OPS+) every single 12 months. Bonds and Ruth swept the triple-slash categories thrice mixed, whereas Hornsby did it six years in a row. As much as I like the nooks and crannies of Baseball-Reference, generally you simply need a stats web site to play the hits. Actually, in Hornsby’s case.

The 1899 Spiders are the worst workforce in MLB history. They're additionally my favorite workforce 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 shows why.

The backstory right here is that before the season, the Spiders’ homeowners additionally purchased the St. Louis Perfectos (later the Cardinals) and traded all their good gamers—together with Cy Younger and two different future Hall of Famers—to St. Louis to attempt to form a superteam. However that context isn’t instantly obvious on the web page. One of many solely indications of something unusual comes at the top of the web page, when B-Ref offers an option to see the Spiders’ earlier season however not their subsequent. That’s as a result of the Spiders franchise folded after 1899.

The opposite indication of one thing strange is the information itself; B-Ref is, at first, a treasure trove of knowledge. As an example, every workforce page includes a fast visible representation of the game-by-game outcomes. Inexperienced means a win, red means a loss, and the peak of the bar signifies the margin of victory. Here is the Spiders’ graph of 20 green bars and 134 purple.

Each web page is stuffed with storytelling statistics. So it’s straightforward to see that, say, Jim Hughey was the Spiders’ ace but finished the season with a 4-30 record, and that the pitching employees as a complete finished with a 6.37 ERA and didn’t feature a single player with a league-average mark or higher.

The Spiders also exemplify the uncertainty of early baseball record-keeping, which wasn’t almost as exact as it is today. Six players have a “?” next to their names, which signifies that baseball historians are not sure of their handedness at the plate. And so they spotlight the wonders of old-timey baseball names, with gamers like Sport McAllister, Ossee Schrecongost, and Highball Wilson. Harry Colliflower was on this group, too, with a enjoyable name and a hilarious participant picture—another delight of early-years Baseball-Reference—in addition.

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