From the category archives:

Research

The first full day of the annual convention for the Society for American Baseball Research was about what I expected. A chance to catch up with old friends and meet others with whom I’ve only had a social media/email correspondence. Please forgive the somewhat sloppy but it’s late and I’m tired A few personal highlights: […]

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NOTE: I have been posting these things long enough now that a few have commented that the introductory section isn’t necessary anymore. But I’m leaving it in because, to paraphrase Joe DiMaggio when asked why he played so hard all the time, there may be people who’ve never read the best-seller entries before. So on […]

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Since I posted the first of these on a Thursday, which is known on social media as a time of reflection, I thought to make it a regular thing under this rubric. These are kind of fun; it’s like a box of chocolates — you never know what you’re gonna get. (Actually, I never understood […]

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It’s still Thursday somewhere, right? Got sidetracked yesterday and this slipped my mind. Since I posted the first of these on a Thursday, which is known on social media as a time of reflection, I thought to make it a regular thing under this rubric. These are kind of fun; it’s like a box of […]

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Just finished thumbing through A History of Baseball in 100 Objects, the latest baseball release by Josh Leventhal, author of several other well-produced baseball titles. The objects included herein represent the game since before its “formal” recognized inception in the mid 1800s (and please don’t write about the exact DOB of the game). But the […]

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Note: Just like Chuck Lorre’s “vanity cards” at the end of The Big Bang Theory, you should read these list stories to their conclusion; the end is always changing, even though the theme is basically the same, finishing up with a self-promotional message. So without further ado, here are the top ten baseball books as […]

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Note: Just like Chuck Lorre’s “vanity cards” at the end of The Big Bang Theory, you should read these list stories to their conclusion; the end is always changing, even though the theme is basically the same, finishing up with a self-promotional message. So without further ado, here are the top ten baseball books as […]

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As of the end of the 2013 season, Jewish athletes had accounted for about 170 of nearly 19,000 Major Leaguers. So you wouldn’t expect the new “Chasing Dreams: Baseball & Becoming American” exhibit at the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia to have the breadth of material one would see in Cooperstown. Nevertheless, […]

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To paraphrase a Groucho Marx line (and with all due respect to the PETA faction), you can’t swing a dead cat (if that’s your idea of a good time) at the annual SABR conference without hitting a baseball writer. While in Philadelphia, I caught up with a few of them (writers, not cats) to see […]

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Golly, Mr. Science

October 23, 2012

Love to see the disciplines getting together, don’t you. Like Dr. Robert Adair’s classic TThe Physics of Baseball (3rd Edition) and Why a Curveball Curves: The Incredible Science of Sports (Popular Mechanics), et al. So that’s why I love stuff like this from Alan Nathan’s The Physics of Baseball website. Lots of great links. A […]

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Review roundup, July 27

July 27, 2012

* Baseball Prospectus is adding a mid-season “addenda” to its annual publication: The Call Up 2012. Here are a couple of review, the first from SouthsideShowdown, the second from ValueOverReplacementGrit. My question is: why is a book like this necessary? Those interested in such information would probably find it easier to get the most recent […]

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Bits and pieces

July 10, 2012

* John Rocker‘s memoir is not exactly new but it’s still getting some buzz. Whether or not it’s good is besides the point. I think a lot of people want to know if he’s as big a train wreck as he came off in that Sports Illustrated piece in 1999. * Dennis Anderson sent me […]

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Bill King of Baseball Reflections posted this piece about some new ideas coming out of the SABR Analytics Conference in Mesa, AZ, March 15-17. John Thorn, MLB’s official historian, will also be there. In 1985, Thorn, along with Pete Palmer, published one of the earlier books on the game’s new generation of metrics in The […]

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Before he began working with an actual publisher, James used to type out The  Baseball Analyst on a bi-monthly basis and make copies as needed for distribution. How times have changed. Like SABR’s annual publications, The National Pastime and Baseball Research Journal, the Analysts were contributor-driven. The first issue contains articles such as “Ballpark Effects […]

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Bits and pieces

June 9, 2011

The semi-regular roundup of things I neglected to post previously. From DriveLineBaseball, this review of The Physics of Pitching: Learn the Mechanics, Science, and Psychology of Pitching to Success. Upshot: It “falls well short of [Robert K.} Adair’s classic text [The Physics of Baseball]. Sure, it looks a lot cooler (the photography is top notch), […]

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Good news for researchers: Baseball Prospectus will make all materials older than one year available to the public. For free! “It’s our way of saying thank you to the Internet for making our work possible over the years,” said Dave Pease, a partner at Baseball Prospectus in a statement. Very cool. One of the departments […]

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The Sporting News-SABR Baseball Research Award, which recognizes outstanding baseball research in areas other than history and biography, has been awarded for the following books published in 2010: Satch, Dizzy, and Rapid Robert: The Wild Saga of Interracial Baseball Before Jackie Robinson, by Timothy M. Gay (Simon & Schuster) Evaluating Baseball’s Managers: A History and […]

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Bits and pieces

April 20, 2011

Time once again for a major links dump to make up for bad behavior. Warning: some of these links go back to March. Just sayin’. * A member of Red Sox Nation pays tribute to a “mortal enemy” by giving the NY Times photo book on Derek Jeter the thumbs up. * The Wall Street […]

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Bits and pieces

March 22, 2011

It’s amazing how everyday life can get in the way of posting here lately. In a poor attempt to compensate, here’s the occasional links dump. A review of John Thorn’s Baseball and the Garden of Eden from The Hardball Times. Upshot: “It must be said that Thorn is a historian first and a writer second. […]

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TWIBB: March 18, 2011

March 18, 2011 · 2 comments

The top baseball books, according to Amazon.com as of Friday, March 18, at 4 p.m. Title Rank General Baseball in the Garden of Eden: The Secret History of the Early Game, by John Thorn 1 The Extra 2%: How Wall Street Strategies Took a Major League Baseball Team from Worst to First, by Jonah Keri […]

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