tennessee vols baseball schedule Hank Aaron, 1,000-home-run hitter? Examine. A participant who may have emerged from the Atlantic Ocean? Double test. In lately without MLB, our staff writers went on a deep dive of baseball’s most full database to seek out issues that remind them of what makes the sport so nice.

Baseball-Reference is the eighth wonder of the world, and admittedly, it’s superior to a few of the better-known seven, too. Who wants the Colossus of Rhodes, after all, when you could have the participant web page for Tuffy Rhodes, onetime home run king of Japan?

One of many qualities that defines baseball’s corner of the internet is the quirkiness inherent in appreciating its history. A lot of that joy is tied in with shopping Baseball-Reference pages, which expose weird stats and enjoyable names and improbable accomplishments and all of these quirky histories. Baseball-Reference is already a year-round treat, but in a time absent of actual games—Opening Day was initially slated for Thursday—it becomes counterintuitively even more central for followers: Only the strangeness can slake our baseball thirst; the only new discoveries can come from mining the depths of already present pages.

The site has more information accessible than anybody has time to learn, social distancing or not. There are pages for each participant, staff, and season; for leagues ranging in ability degree throughout four continents; for every doable statistical search a baseball fan would hope to answer. So to celebrate the breadth of the positioning’s riches, we held a miniature draft, picking our 5 favorite B-Ref pages apiece, chosen from anywhere on the positioning. As befits this eighth marvel, we acquired bizarre—and in so doing, found room for some baseball smiles even when the parks are closed, the mounds just waiting for the first actual pitch of spring. —Zach Kram.

Probably the most 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 Main League Baseball, it’s both bolded and italicized. B-Ref even tracks black ink on a participant’s page, with certain classes weighted to emphasise their importance, and publishes the participant’s rating at the bottom of his page as a quick and soiled estimation of his worthiness for the Hall of Fame.

When most statheads discuss players with a lot of black ink, they go to favorites from the recent past, like Barry Bonds or Pedro Martínez. However my personal favorite smattering of black ink belongs to Rogers Hornsby. The Rajah was a real asshole, God rest his soul, however he might absolutely rake. If you know something about Hornsby, other than his profitable personality, it’s that his profession batting average, .358, is the highest ever for a right-handed hitter and second only to Ty Cobb overall. That undersells his offensive prowess considerably.

That’s right, from 1920 to 1925, Hornsby led the Nationwide League in batting common, OBP, and slugging proportion (and by extension OPS and OPS+) each single yr. Bonds and Ruth swept the triple-slash classes 3 times mixed, while Hornsby did it six years in a row. As a lot as I really like the nooks and crannies of Baseball-Reference, typically you just desire a stats site to play the hits. Literally, in Hornsby’s case.

The 1899 Spiders are the worst team in MLB historical past. They're additionally my favourite staff in MLB history. (I like them so fervently that early on in my relationship, my girlfriend bought me a vintage Spiders T-shirt as a birthday current.) And their Baseball-Reference web page exhibits why.

The backstory right here is that earlier than the season, the Spiders’ house owners additionally purchased the St. Louis Perfectos (later the Cardinals) and traded all their good players—together with Cy Young and two different future Corridor of Famers—to St. Louis to try to form a superteam. However that context isn’t instantly apparent on the page. One of the solely indications of something strange comes on the top of the web page, when B-Ref offers an option to see the Spiders’ earlier season but not their subsequent. That’s because the Spiders franchise folded after 1899.

The other indication of one thing unusual is the information itself; B-Ref is, initially, a treasure trove of data. As an illustration, every staff web page includes a fast visible representation of the game-by-game results. Inexperienced means a win, pink means a loss, and the height of the bar signifies the margin of victory. Here is the Spiders’ graph of 20 inexperienced bars and 134 crimson.

Each web page is stuffed with storytelling statistics. So it’s easy to see that, say, Jim Hughey was the Spiders’ ace however completed the season with a 4-30 document, and that the pitching staff as a whole completed with a 6.37 ERA and didn’t function a single player with a league-average mark or better.

The Spiders additionally exemplify the uncertainty of early baseball record-keeping, which wasn’t nearly as precise as it is as we speak. Six gamers have a “?” subsequent to their names, which signifies that baseball historians are not sure of their handedness at the plate. They usually 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 identify and a hilarious participant photograph—another delight of early-years Baseball-Reference—in addition.

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