February 18, 2019

Top Stories

The “technically …not” Hall of Fame

February 14, 2019 · by · Leave a Comment 

In 2006, a Baseball Hall of Fame Special Committee on Negro Leagues, made up primarily of expert blackball scholars, elected 17 Negro Leaguers to the Hall of Fame, almost doubling the total number of players and executives whose careers were primarily in the Negro Leagues from 18 to 35. If we use Sol White and Frank Grant as the ‘beginning of scope’ for blackball Hall of Fame consideration, that’s 35 honorees (29 players and 6 executives) for roughly a fifty-year period of Negro Leagues play. This 2006 special election certainly was a defining moment, and something to be celebrated. However,... [Read the full story]

General

A Problem with WAR = Defensive Value

February 17, 2019 · by · Leave a Comment 

My primary research interest has always been determining which players had the best seasons—and the best careers.  That is why (since the publication of WIN SHARES in 2002) I have used win shares as the basis for my system of evaluating a player’s career (CAWS Career Gauge). As a mathematician, it is difficult for me to understand how any metric could do a better job than win shares in evaluating a player’s season AFTER the season is over. But, as a researcher, I try to keep an open mind.  So, although I have not studied WAR in any real depth, I decided to see how the numbers for the... [Read the full story]

Features

Ryan Westmoreland: Former Boston Red Sox Top Prospect Talks Playing Career and New Focus

January 12, 2019 · by · Leave a Comment 

For serious fans of the Boston Red Sox, Harry Agganis and Tony Conigliaro are familiar names. Both were top young players who saw their promising careers curtailed by tragedy and unforeseen circumstance (Conigliaro was severely injured by a beanball and Agganis died as the result of a pulmonary embolism). Another top prospect for the team was outfielder Ryan Westmoreland, who seemed destined for stardom before a serious injury forced him to prematurely end his playing career. However, he has remained involved in the game and is pursuing new avenues to keep him connected to baseball in other... [Read the full story]

Hall of Fame

A Problem with WAR = Defensive Value

February 17, 2019 · by · Leave a Comment 

My primary research interest has always been determining which players had the best seasons—and the best careers.  That is why (since the publication of WIN SHARES in 2002) I have used win shares as the basis for my system of evaluating a player’s career (CAWS Career Gauge). As a mathematician, it is difficult for me to understand how any metric could do a better job than win shares in evaluating a player’s season AFTER the season is over. But, as a researcher, I try to keep an open mind.  So, although I have not studied WAR in any real depth, I decided to see how the numbers for the... [Read the full story]

Minors

Principal Park: Despite City’s Size, Ballpark Has Big Impact

June 30, 2018 · by · Leave a Comment 

Minor league baseball a Des Moines, Iowa, staple at same location since 1947 Submitted by Steve Dunn Located at the confluence of the Des Moines and Raccoon rivers in Des Moines, Iowa, Principal Park and its two predecessors have hosted professional baseball since Friday, June 20, 1947. One of the more unique games in minor league history was played nearly 61 years later at Principal Park on Saturday, June 14, 2008. With widespread flooding in central Iowa, the Iowa Cubs and Nashville Sounds played a Triple A Pacific Coast League game that drew an official attendance of zero. “The only other... [Read the full story]

General

A Problem with WAR = Defensive Value

February 17, 2019 by

My primary research interest has always been determining which players had the best seasons—and the best careers.  That is why (since the publication of WIN SHARES in 2002) I have used win shares as the basis for my system of evaluating a player’s career (CAWS Career Gauge). As a mathematician, it is difficult for me to understand how any metric... Read more of this article


Jalal Leach: A Giant Testament to Perseverance

February 15, 2019 by

When baseball players sign their first professional contract they have stars in their eyes and no doubts in their mind as they are certain they will play in the major leagues. Unfortunately, the majority of these young men see their careers end short of their goal. However, a small number make it, which is a monumental accomplishment regardless if they... Read more of this article


The Four CAWS HOF Benchmarks for Pitchers

February 15, 2019 by

In a previous post re Koufax and Kershaw, I mentioned one of the benchmarks created by the CAWS Career Gauge to help establish whether a pitcher posted HOF numbers during his career.  As a result of that post, I have been asked to list all of the benchmarks for pitchers. (CAWS  =  career assessment/win shares). There are four HOF benchmarks for pitchers... Read more of this article


Koufax and Kershaw and the Hall of Fame

February 12, 2019 by

Consider a pitcher who recorded the following distinctions during his career: Won the Cy Young Award three times Won the ERA title five times Was an All Star seven times Was voted MVP (Most Valuable Player) Sandy Koufax did all of these things in twelve seasons in the major leagues with the Dodgers.   And, of course, he is in the Hall of Fame. But... Read more of this article


“A Million Dollar Deal”

February 7, 2019 by

In 1965 the Cincinnati Reds dealt Frank Robinson to the Baltimore Orioles.  Here’s an article I wrote almost 12 years ago that examines that historic trade. May you forever rest in peace, Mr. Robinson.  December 9, 1965: Reds right fielder Frank Robinson to the Orioles for Milt Pappas, Jack Baldschun and Dick Simpson. When Cincinnati Reds owner... Read more of this article


THE BALLPARK CHRONICLES

February 7, 2019 by

Soon a new version of the classic ballpark book “Green Cathedrals” will be issued by SABR (Society for American Baseball Research). After having researched over 400 specific Blackball parks for the updated book, here are a few interesting ballpark facts I discovered. Philadelphia Mysteries Pencoyd Park was the home of the 1928 Philadelphia Tigers... Read more of this article


Baseball Hall of Fame Voting Peculiarities of the Past

February 3, 2019 by

The 2019 Baseball Hall of Fame election results were recently announced, with Mariano Rivera, Mike Mussina and Edgar Martinez all receiving the requisite number of votes. In particular, Rivera gained national headlines by becoming the first person to be named on 100 percent of the ballots that were cast. While he was a wonderful pitcher and completely... Read more of this article


Braves (5) Go the Distance Again Before Sending Rockies (4) Packing in Round 2

January 14, 2019 by

The following are game accounts from a holiday tournament I’m participating in using Action! PC Baseball from Dave Koch Sports Inc. We’re using 2018 rosters, teams are seeded based on their record, and I’m representing the Atlanta Braves (the Red Sox were already taken by the time it was my turn to pick). Information about the tournament... Read more of this article


Ryan Westmoreland: Former Boston Red Sox Top Prospect Talks Playing Career and New Focus

January 12, 2019 by

For serious fans of the Boston Red Sox, Harry Agganis and Tony Conigliaro are familiar names. Both were top young players who saw their promising careers curtailed by tragedy and unforeseen circumstance (Conigliaro was severely injured by a beanball and Agganis died as the result of a pulmonary embolism). Another top prospect for the team was outfielder Ryan... Read more of this article


Dbacks (7) “Ex-Zach-T” Victory Over Phightins (10) in 4 Games

January 7, 2019 by

The following are game accounts courtesy of Andy Sexton from a holiday tournament I’m participating in using Action! PC Baseball from Dave Koch Sports Inc. We’re using 2018 rosters, teams are seeded based on their record, and I’m representing the Atlanta Braves (the Red Sox were already taken by the time it was my turn to pick). Information... Read more of this article


More Posts From General

Features

Ryan Westmoreland: Former Boston Red Sox Top Prospect Talks Playing Career and New Focus

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For serious fans of the Boston Red Sox, Harry Agganis and Tony Conigliaro are... 


From the Archives: Touring the Bases with…Jim Bouton

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“You see, you spend a good piece of your life gripping a baseball and in the... 


The Ballad of Mr. Cub and Leo the Lip

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The Ballad of Mr. Cub and Leo the Lip It was one of the most intriguing matchups... 


Brooks, Still the Magician

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This is a weird day for me, and probably many other similar-aged people, boys especially,... 


Say it Wasn’t So: When Shoeless Joe Jackson Became Baseball’s Number One Draft-dodger

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Here’s one you may not have heard: how Shoeless Joe Jackson was briefly... 


More Posts From Features

Hall of Fame

A Problem with WAR = Defensive Value

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My primary research interest has always been determining which players had the best... 


The Four CAWS HOF Benchmarks for Pitchers

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In a previous post re Koufax and Kershaw, I mentioned one of the benchmarks created... 


Koufax and Kershaw and the Hall of Fame

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Consider a pitcher who recorded the following distinctions during his career: Won... 


Rating the 2017 Hall of Fame Candidates Based on Win Shares

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One of the first items of business in baseball each year is the announcement of players... 


Pre-Integration Era Committee Releases 2016 Candidates For Baseball Hall of Fame: Sorry, There’s No Room in the Inn

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First, let me state categorically that I love the Baseball Hall of Fame; love the... 


More Posts From Hall of Fame

Minors

Principal Park: Despite City’s Size, Ballpark Has Big Impact

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Minor league baseball a Des Moines, Iowa, staple at same location since 1947 Submitted... 


Max Watt: The Boston Red Sox’s Power Pitching Prospect

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Scouting is an integral part of professional baseball. Teams employ and send out... 


Suns’ First Pitch Thrown By Suns’ First Pitcher

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The Hagerstown Suns of the South Atlantic League asked the retiring sheriff of nearby... 


An Interview with Boston Red Sox Prospect Nick Longhi

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Growing up rooting for a baseball team, and striving to get into position to one... 


Carroll enjoys staying on his grind

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ROCHESTER, NY – More than a decade has passed since Brett Carroll roamed... 


More Posts From Minors

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