Shoeless Joe Jackson: The Natural

Shoeless Joe Jackson Featured

If there was ever The Perfect Swing it was created by Shoeless Joe. It was described as “elegant” and “balletic”–a “natural” swing. And, it produced some of the most amazing numbers in the game. In 1910, Shoeless Joe Jackson was traded to the American League’s Cleveland franchise. It was the beginning of an astounding eleven […]

The Greatest Offensive Second Basemen

Rogers Hornsby, Sr. (1896-1963)

The following post represents Part Two in the presentation of the greatest second basemen. This post: Total Offense.     #14 (2 tied): Hub Collins Hub Collins, a second baseman, was a fearless base stealer, who played for almost 7 seasons for mostly Brooklyn of the National League between 1886 and 1892. He averaged over […]

Masaichi Kaneda: The Emperor

Kaneda 400th Win

In Japan, during the 1950s and 1960s, Masaichi Kaneda, Shigeo Nagashima, Sadaharu Oh and Katsuya Nomura were the faces of professional baseball. Nagashima, a third baseman, and Oh, a first baseman, were power-hitting teammates for the Yankees of Japan, the Yomiuri Giants. Nomura was the home run-slugging catcher for the Nankai Hawks, and Masaichi Kaneda […]

Addie Joss: Standard of Excellence

Joss' career record of a 0.97 WHIP (walks plus hits per innings pitched) is the best in baseball history.

Addie Joss starred for the American League’s Cleveland franchise in the earlier part of the 20th century (1902-1910). Cleveland’s team name eventually became the Indians, and featured great players such as second baseman Nap Lajoie, left fielder “Shoeless Joe” Jackson and center fielder Tris Speaker. At about the dawn of the 1900s, a young man […]

Michael Lewis: Coach Fitz’s Management Theory

Coach Billy Fitzgerald (left), one of five inductees into the Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame of 2007 and Michael Lewis, a best-selling American non-fiction author and financial journalist. His books include The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, Liar's Poker, The New New Thing and Moneyball among others.

Recently, some of us former baseball coaches (and current coaches) were cutting up reminiscences about a small handful of parents we have encountered over the years. We also reflected on some of our former coaches and Michael Lewis’ brilliant piece on his high school baseball coach was recalled. The truth is that most parents and coaches are fine […]

Isao Harimoto: The Greatest Hitter in Japanese Baseball History

Harimoto-Orions

On a nice Spring afternoon in 1959, our father took us to see the Toei Flyers (now called the Nippon Ham Fighters… of Yu Darvish fame) play the Nankai Hawks at Namba Yakyujo, home of the Hawks in Osaka, Japan. The Flyers’ left fielder was an emerging rookie named Isao Harimoto, a left-hander who was […]

Kazuhisa Inao: The Greatest “Big Game” pitcher in Japanese Baseball History

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Those of us who grew up during the ’50s in Japan all knew about Kazuhisa “Iron Man” Inao. In fact, he earned that nickname on his way to 276 career victories and a revered place in Japan’s Baseball Hall of Fame. Victor Starffin and Tadashi “Bozo” Wakabayashi, great pitchers in their era, were now retired. […]

Eiji Sawamura: The First Great Japanese Pitcher

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I first heard the legend of Eiji Sawamura when I was in elementary school. My Japanese friends in our neighborhood, and their fathers and grandfathers, told me about how he had struck out Ruth, Gehrig, Gehringer and Foxx… in order. My father confirmed the story, and filled in the missing parts of the legend. It seemed hard […]

Victor Starffin: The Greatest Pitcher in Japanese Baseball History?

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Victor Starffin, except for a fluke of history, might have been a member of the American baseball Hall of Fame. He was the first pitcher to win 300 games in Japanese baseball history, and was elected to the Japan Professional Baseball Hall of Fame in 1960. Much of his family history is speculative and disputed, […]

Greatest Players of All-Time Series: First Basemen–Total Defense

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The following post represents Part Three in a presentation of the best First Basemen in the history of baseball. This list covers the greatest defensive performers at first base.     #11 (3 tied):   Ed Konetchy Ed Konetchy was a gifted defender at first base. He played 15 seasons for a number of National […]