A Look Back – 1980

First things first: unlike 1997, our first post in the series, I was not alive for 1980. Still six years from being born, I’m writing here as an amateur baseball historian/enthusiast/guy-who-spends-too-much-time-on-Baseball-Reference.com. Therefore, your comments and discussion are particularly appreciated on this post. Also, I want to have, here in my opening paragraph, a shout-out to Tom Ra for the suggestion (and you really should click that link, because Tom pointed out a bunch of cool/interesting things about 1980 in his post; Doug added some other interesting tidbits below it). Without any further ado…

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Weird and Wacky Line Scores

If you’re like me, you know all about scanning box scores for unusual line scores. Typically, I’m looking for players who had big games, with some crooked numbers in the H and RBI columns, but just as interesting are the line scores that leave you scratching your head. This post is about those games. More after the jump.

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Name That Stat: Sluggers (Solved)

This is a different take on a quiz, with an added variable of ranking. I’ll give you the ranked list, and you get to figure out the statistic that produces that list. In other words, just like a regular quiz, but with the added criterion of ranking.

So, here’s the list, showing the top 10 sluggers in a particular statistic. What is it? .

Hint #1: the stat involves traditional metrics for sluggers
Hint #2: the rankings could provide a clue as to the type of stat to look for.

Congratulations to Howard! He knew that these ten sluggers have the most consecutive seasons with 30 HR and 100 RBI. More after the jump.

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A Batting Race: 1983 NL

I have to say how little the subject matter of this post matters to me. As I’ve said before, batting average doesn’t super matter; we all know this. 1983 is before I was born. I have no emotional attachment or interest in any of the subjects of this post. And this took a tremendous amount of research.

But… all of that goes to show you that a good baseball story, is a good baseball story. Because I’ve thoroughly enjoyed learning more about this race, a batting title chase for the ages among four players: Bill Madlock of Pittsburgh, Jose Cruz of Houston, and teammates Lonnie Smith and George Hendrick of St. Louis. (To be clear, I started this post the day before MLB.com decided to feature an article about the Cruz family; it’s just a happy coincidence that there’s something fun there to link while I was writing about the eldest in the family.)

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Replacement-Level Hitting

“Replacement-level.” In certain corners of the baseball internet, it’s a dirty word. In other corners, it’s a given. But what does it mean, truly, to be a “replacement-level hitter” in 2020? Is “replacement-level” a provable concept? Do you need an advanced math degree? Are there real examples of such hitters? Read on to find out!

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Halla-May 29th

As I write this, it’s May 29th, 2020. 15 years ago today, Roy Halladay was nearly perfect; 10 years ago today, he was. Let’s check it out. (And FYI, I really didn’t have time to compose this, so it’s quite long. I might’ve done a better job editing if I hadn’t needed to pop it out the same day I wrote it in order for it to be relevant, so I’m sorry for the length of the piece.)

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Make Me a Hall-of-Famer – Paul Hines

Imitation being the sincerest form of flattery, I’m delighted to seize on Dr. Doom’s idea by making a HOF case for this player of whom I’m guessing many of you may not be aware. If you’re not familiar with Hines, he was a center-fielder from the earliest days of major league ball, enjoying his greatest success with the Providence Grays. More after the jump.

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Lopsided Batting Titles

Let’s get it out of the way: batting average is not one of the five most important offensive stats. It’s not one of the ten most important. It might be in the top 20. But regardless, we all grew up knowing “.300 hitter=good,” and we still talk about the batting average leader as the “batting champion.” So even though it’s not “important,” batting average can still be fun and interesting. So I’ve been looking into some batting races to see if there’s anything “there” for me to post about. I’ve come up with a few that might be worth discussing.

But as is my wont, I feel a need to learn as much as possible about a topic before I’m ready to write about it. In this case, that meant analyzing batting races. So one of the questions that was burning in my mind was the counterpoint to which batting races were interesting: which batting races were the most lopsided in history?

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