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Quiz – Baseball Alchemy (solved)

These nine players are the only major leaguers to have a game since 1914 with one of two unusual offensive accomplishments (as indicated by the two columns). Those two accomplishments are quite similar. What are they?

Congratulations to Relief Man and Richard Chester! They quickly (and correctly) deduced that this quiz was likely related to opening day exploits. Like the alchemist turning dross into gold, the first group of 6 players had an opening day game scoring 3 runs without a hit, while the second group scored twice without an official AB. Those games are after the jump.
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Three Days of Bunts

We’ve seen three baseball games so far this year, and if that’s a meaningful sample, I think Hyun-Jin Ryu has all the major awards locked up.

We’ve also seen eight plate appearances this season that ended with bunts.  After the jump, a few facts about those bunts, which will accomplish nothing except establishing a baseline for a feature I hope to bring back to these pages with some regularity throughout the summer.

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The 20-21 Club

Here’s how one small group of hitters progressed through their 20s:

Trout Big 6 comps

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Circle of Greats 1928 Part 2 Balloting

This post is for voting and discussion in the 53rd round of balloting for the Circle of Greats (COG).  This round complete the addition of those players born in 1928.  Rules and lists are after the jump. Read the rest of this entry

COG 1928 Part 1 Results: At Whit’s End, Induction

Appearing on his fortieth, and now final, High Heat Stats Circle of Greats ballot, Lou Whitaker at last joins his longtime double-play partner, Alan Trammell, in the Circle of Greats as our 52nd inductee.  Whitaker edged out Sandy Koufax by a mere two votes.  More on Lou and the voting after the jump. Read the rest of this entry

Opening Highs

The Yankees opened their 1956 season on the road, at Griffith Park against the old Senators (now Twins).  Mickey Mantle had two home runs that day, but Yogi Berra, batting immediately after Mantle in the lineup, managed to rack up five RBIs anyway, posting the highest RE24 of any hitter in the majors in an Opening Day game during the 1950s. Yankees/Senators 4/17/1956

RE24, you may recollect if you are regular High Heat Stats reader, is a measure of how much the result of a hitter’s plate appearance increased (or reduced) his team’s run-scoring chances in that inning.  With a man on second and one out, the average number of runs scored in the rest of the inning will be about 0.72.  With a man on second and two outs, that number drops to about 0.35, so a hitter who strikes out with a man on second and one out is given an RE24, for that PA, of -0.37.  But if instead he singles and the man on second scores, the team’s run scoring expectation has increased to the one run that actually did score plus the 0.29 that will score on average given the new base-out condition of one out and no men on.  So the hitter gets an RE24 credit, for his RBI single, of 1.29 minus 0.72, or .57.  More on Opening Day RE24s after the jump.   Read the rest of this entry

Streaks of Gold

Paul Goldschmidt had the longest active hitting streak in the majors going when the regular season ended last year. His streak stood at 19 games in a row with at least one hit.  In Australia, Goldy picked up right where he left off, getting not just one but two hits in each of the first two games of the 2014 season.  That brings his on-going hit streak to 21 games. More numbers inspired these facts are after the jump. Read the rest of this entry

Circle of Greats 1928 Part 1 Balloting

This post is for voting and discussion in the 52nd round of balloting for the Circle of Greats (COG).  This round begins to add those players born in 1928.  Rules and lists are after the jump. Read the rest of this entry

COG 1929 Vote Results: Santo’s On His Way

It took the very last vote cast to break a three-way tie, but Ron Santo, in his 16th ballot appearance, eked out a one-vote victory, over both his longtime teammate Ernie Banks and Juan Marichal.  Santo becomes the 51st inductee into the High Heat Stats Circle of Greats.  More on Ron and the voting after the jump (down the chimney?). Read the rest of this entry

Honus Wagner and 3,000 Hits

In June of 1914, “Hans” Wagner became the second major leaguer to have accumulated 3,000 regular season hits in his career. But when during that June did he reach that milestone? Read the rest of this entry

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