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History/Humor: The King and the Orator

Orator Jim O'Rourke was a fine man who thought, as did his grandchildren, that he had won the 1884 batting championship. Nah. Sorry, O'Rourke. The batting average leader was actually that legendary rapscallion King Kelly!

 Analysis. Is Larry Walker a Hall of Famer?

On the surface, his career is virtually identical to that of Chuck Klein, a Hall of Famer, but how do his stats look when Coors is factored out?

Opinion. A-Rod has still not told the truth
His performance did NOT improve in Texas. His home park did.

History: The Year of the 180-Foot Homer

The White Stockings put up some sweet numbers in 1884, when they played in a park too small for little league.

Analysis: How far can a major leaguer actually hit a baseball

Interesting question. Assume an indoor stadium at sea level, therefore no wind and a steady temperature. What's the maximum distance a man can drive the ball?
Analysis: Which sluggers were more or less powerful than you think?

Detailed home/road data allows a new level of insight into this question.

Nostalgia: The bizarre 1926 NL batting championship.

The league leaders in the 1920s usually consist of familiar HOF names, but something weird and sort of wonderful happened in 1926.

Humor. The extraordinary career of Danny "Suits" Sparrow.

I inherited my love of baseball from my late dad who, according to no less an authority than himself, was the greatest player of them all. I obviously didn't inherit any of his talent, except for the bullshitting.

Humor: The extraordinary career of Danny "Suits" Sparrow.

I inherited my love of baseball from my late dad who, according to no less an authority than himself, was the greatest player of them all. I obviously didn't inherit any of his talent, except for the bullshitting.

Nostalgia: Looking back at the Summer of '41

It is the Diamond Anniversary of baseball's greatest summer.

Nostalgia: Mickey Mantle card goes for half a mil!

If you have the two most valuable Mickey Mantle cards, you have made more on Mickey's career than he did.

Nostalgia: Now pinch-hitting for Frank Saucier, #1/8

In January, Saucier was on the cover of The Sporting News. In August, he was pulled for a 3'7" pinch hitter.  

Baseball history: The great pitching season you never noticed. 

18 wins and a 2.48 ERA? Nothing special, right? Wrong. 

Nostalgia: Brooklyn: there used to be a ballpark here.

Remembering past glories.

Baseball history: The worst hitters of all time.

Who would you want in the batter's box - assuming you bet on the other team?

Nostalgia: My favorite major leaguer: Tony Suck.

Was he the worst hitter in history? Maybe, maybe not. But he sure lived up to his name.

Nostalgia: Norm Siebern and Jerry Lumpe, conjoined twins of post-war baseball.

Sometimes two names are permanently linked.

Baseball historyHow exactly did the Dodgers blow the 1951 pennant?

In the days before Sabermetrics, manager Charlie Dressen made just about every miscalculation imaginable.

Speculation: Is David Price's 7-year contract a sensible move for the BoSox? What about Greinke's deal with the D-backs?

There are several pitchers with very comparable careers to Price and Greinke at their current ages. What did they do for the remainder of their careers?

Reader question. Why didn't DiMaggio get into the HOF on the first ballot?

Don't think of it in modern terms! Remember against whom he was competing.

Reader question: Is starting pitching more valuable in the regular season than in the playoffs?

Depends on how you word the question. All forms of talent are more important in the regular season, assuming you define "more important" as "more likely to ensure success."

Analysis. Is a pitcher's "hits per inning" an independent statistic?

It seems that when batters don't strike out, they succeed just as well against Randy Johnson as against any other pitcher. So, if strikeouts are higher, hits are lower.

Analysis. How many games can a superstar add to your W column?

You are 23 games back. You're about to pony up 25 million per year for A-Rod to replace a Triple-A guy at short. Should you start chilling down the champagne?

Analysis. Reflection on Joe DiMaggio's 56 game streak.

How unlikely was it? Were there any less likely hitting streaks of 30 or more games? What was the most likely hitting streak? Do any modern players have a shot at the Big 56?

Utility. An online calculator for the NFL passing rating.

I know this site isn't supposed to have anything to do with football, but I wrote the damned thing, so here it is.

Links and Info

Stats

  • Baseball-reference.com. Tremendous resource for current and historical info.

  • Current major league stats from ESPN

  • Baseball-Almanac.com.

  • SABR. If you aren't a member, you aren't serious about baseball.

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