wade boggs baseball card value Hank Aaron, 1,000-home-run hitter? Examine. A player who may have emerged from the Atlantic Ocean? Double examine. In lately without MLB, our staff writers went on a deep dive of baseball’s most full database to find things that remind them of what makes the game so nice.

Baseball-Reference is the eighth wonder of the world, and frankly, it’s superior to some of the better-known seven, too. Who needs the Colossus of Rhodes, in any case, when you may have the player web page for Tuffy Rhodes, onetime home 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 joy is tied in with shopping Baseball-Reference pages, which expose weird stats and enjoyable names and incredible 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 initially slated for Thursday—it becomes counterintuitively even 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 location has more information obtainable than anybody has time to learn, social distancing or not. There are pages for every player, group, and season; for leagues ranging in ability degree throughout 4 continents; for every attainable statistical search a baseball fan would hope to reply. So to celebrate the breadth of the location’s riches, we held a miniature draft, picking our five favourite B-Ref pages apiece, chosen from wherever on the site. As befits this eighth marvel, we obtained weird—and in so doing, discovered room for some baseball smiles even when the parks are closed, the mounds simply waiting for the primary real pitch of spring. —Zach Kram.

One of the crucial distinctive bits of Baseball-Reference branding is “black ink.” Whenever a participant leads his league in a statistical category, the number on his 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 certain classes weighted to emphasize their significance, and publishes the player’s score at the backside of his page as a fast and soiled estimation of his worthiness for the Hall of Fame.

When most statheads talk about players with plenty of black ink, they go to favorites from the recent previous, like Barry Bonds or Pedro Martínez. But my personal favorite smattering of black ink belongs to Rogers Hornsby. The Rajah was a real asshole, God relaxation his soul, but he may absolutely rake. If you know something about Hornsby, apart from his successful character, it’s that his profession batting average, .358, is the best ever for a right-handed hitter and second solely to Ty Cobb overall. That undersells his offensive prowess somewhat.

That’s proper, from 1920 to 1925, Hornsby led the National League in batting common, OBP, and slugging percentage (and by extension OPS and OPS+) each single year. Bonds and Ruth swept the triple-slash categories 3 times combined, whereas Hornsby did it six years in a row. As much as I love the nooks and crannies of Baseball-Reference, sometimes you just need a stats site to play the hits. Actually, in Hornsby’s case.

The 1899 Spiders are the worst crew in MLB historical past. They're also my favourite team 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 page shows 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 gamers—including Cy Younger and two other future Hall of Famers—to St. Louis to try to kind a superteam. However that context isn’t instantly obvious on the web page. One of many solely indications of one thing unusual comes at the prime of the page, when B-Ref offers an choice to see the Spiders’ previous season but not their subsequent. That’s because the Spiders franchise folded after 1899.

The opposite indication of one thing strange is the data itself; B-Ref is, at the beginning, a treasure trove of data. As an example, every group page includes a fast visible representation of the game-by-game results. 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.

Every web page is filled 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 report, and that the pitching staff as a whole finished with a 6.37 ERA and didn’t characteristic a single player with a league-average mark or better.

The Spiders additionally exemplify the uncertainty of early baseball record-keeping, which wasn’t almost as precise as it's as we speak. Six players have a “?” next to their names, which signifies that baseball historians are uncertain of their handedness at the plate. And they spotlight the wonders of old-timey baseball names, with players like Sport McAllister, Ossee Schrecongost, and Highball Wilson. Harry Colliflower was on this team, too, with a enjoyable title and a hilarious player picture—one other delight of early-years Baseball-Reference—as well.

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