Mike “King” Kelly: First of the American Baseball Legends

King Kelly

Mike “King” Kelly was the most popular player of the 19th century. In fact, he was the best known American of his time. He was handsome, projected charisma, and played the game with a natural flair for the dramatic. He was the single most important reason that women became attracted to baseball. Before Kelly, very […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

Eiji Sawamura: The First Great Japanese Pitcher

1935_dai_nippon-620

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?

Victor-Starffin-620

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: The Second Basemen

Hornsby 620

The following post is part of a Three Part presentation on the greatest second basemen of All-Time. Part One will rate the players by Total Player Rating; Part Two will cover the offense, and Part Three will list the best defensive players. “People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll […]

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

Dan-McGann 620

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 […]

AL MVP 2011: Justin Verlander

In 2011, Verlander became the first Tiger since Bill Gullickson in 1991 to win 20 games, and the first big leaguer since Curt Schilling (2002) to reach 20 wins before the end of August.

Well, here we go again. The argument for infinity. Is it legitimate to award a pitcher the Most Valuable Player trophy, particularly the AL MVP 2011? There are as many arguments for–as against–this premise. Monday, November 21st, 2011, saw the best pitcher on the planet, the Detroit Tigers’ Justin Verlander, win the AL MVP Award, […]

Greatest Players of All-Time Series: First Basemen by Total Offense

lou-gehrig 620

The following post represents Part Two in a presentation on the best First Basemen in the history of baseball. This list covers the greatest offensive players at the position. Part Three will list the best defensive performers at First Base.   #15 (2 tied): Orlando Cepeda Orlando Cepeda played first base for the San Francisco […]