• Best Defensive Third Basemen

    Best Defensive Third Basemen

    It is important to remember that there are fewer third basemen in the Hall of Fame than any other position. The position has traditionally been looked at as a corner power-hitting place in the lineup. Therefore, trying to find a good power hitter who can also play defense is a challenging proposition. Most winning teams […]

  • Christy Mathewson - The Christian Gentleman

    Christy Mathewson: The Christian Gentleman

    Once, in the ninth inning of a game against the Cubs, the great Christy Mathewson looked into his fine-fielding catcher, the Californian Chief Meyers, for the sign. Suddenly, Meyers called “Time!”, jumped up and headed to the mound. “What’s the matter?”, asked Mathewson. “Skip wants a double-play ball,” responded Meyers. Mathewson glanced toward the dugout […]

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    Rube Waddell: The First American League Ace

    In the early part of the 20th century, baseball fans came out in droves to watch “Rube strike ’em out!” Yes, Rube Waddell was the new American League’s star pitcher. He was a flame-throwing strikeout ace–and he was really something to see. Before some games, he would paint, on the sidewalks and streets, “Come watch […]

  • Roger Connor Cover

    Roger Connor: The First Giant

    Roger Connor was the best first baseman in baseball during his 18 year career. He set a record for career home runs that was not broken until Babe Ruth broke it in 1921, 24 years later. What made Connor a star was his combination of power and superb fielding–an amazing balance on both sides of […]

  • Bill-Lange

    Bill Lange: How Good Was He?

    When asked about center fielder Bill Lange, A. H. Spink, founder of The Sporting News, responded, “Lange was Ty Cobb enlarged, fully great in speed, batting skill and baserunning.” Others agreed, only giving the nod to Buck Ewing as the greatest 19th century player because of his expertise at catcher. While Lange was widely acknowledged […]

  • Davy Force

    David “Davy” Force: The Gold Glove

    David “Davy” Force was not baseball’s first great short stop. Players such as Dickey Pearce and George Wright helped to develop the position in the 1860s and early 1870s. Yet, Force is clearly remembered as the first great defensive player at the position. He played on a number of teams for 19 years in the […]

  • UBTG Dream Team Baseball Poll

    UBTG DREAM TEAM BASEBALL POLL

    Recently, Ultimate Baseball The Game (UBTG) launched a “dream team” project, a Dream Team Baseball Poll designed to tally respondents’ favorite picks of all time at each position. I was asked to submit my all-time dream picks, and I decided to publish the following post in hopes of spurring some lively discussion. As many of […]

  • Monte Ward

    Monte Ward: Leader, Scholar and Athlete

    John Montgomery “Monte” Ward, all 5′ 9″ and 165 pounds of him, was one of the top pitchers of his generation. He was also one of the top shortstops of the 1880s and 1890s. And, he was one of the most influential “movers and shakers” in the history of baseball. As legends of baseball go, […]

  • Amos Rusie Cover

    Amos Rusie: The Pitcher Who Changed the Game

    Amos Rusie threw so hard, many fans swore they couldn’t see the ball when it left his hand. Experts believe he could “bring it” at 100mph–and that he routinely threw in the high 90s. His catcher, Dick Buckley, under his glove, placed a thin strip of lead covered in a handkerchief, and added a sponge […]

  • Big Sam Thompson Main

    Big Sam Thompson: The First Great Clutch Hitter

    In the 1880s, a new baseball star appeared on the horizon. He was 6′ 2 1/2″ tall and around 225 pounds, a pretty big fellow for his era, and his teammates, and the fans, called him “Big Sam”. Samuel Luther “Big Sam” Thompson was indeed a formidable force with a bat in his hands. He […]

Japanese & American Baseball Legends

From Deep Right Field covers Japanese & American baseball legends, famous baseball players & important baseball facts about the history of the game. As always, comments on legends of baseball are welcome. I am a baseball historian. I have always been fascinated by the influence that baseball has had on our culture & the influence people have had on the game. As my grandfather once said, "When America is excavated 2,000 years from now, the US will be mostly known for its form of government, our popular music... & baseball." It is the only sport through which you can study the evolution of American culture throughout our history.

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.

Michael Lewis: Coach Fitz’s Management Theory

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 […]

Josh Gibson, one of the greatest power hitters in professional baseball history, was barred from Major League Baseball during his lifetime due to racial segregation (the de facto MLB rule from 1884 to 1946). He played for the Homestead Grays and Pittsburgh Crawfords.

Home Runs As A Catcher

Mike Piazza holds the career major league record for home runs while in the lineup as a catcher: 396. It is estimated that Josh Gibson hit over 800 HRs while catching in the Negro Leagues. Some projections show Gibson might have hit 775+ HRs in the Majors.      

In 1972, Colbert had 111 RBI for the San Diego Padres (488 total team runs). He was the first Padre player to drive in over 100 runs and hit over 30 HRs in a season.

Five Homers In One Day

On August 1, 1972, Nathan “Nate” Colbert hit five home runs in a doubleheader against the Atlanta Braves (Retrosheet box scores for game 1 and 2) ending the day with 13 RBI. Stan Musial also hit 5 home runs in one day on May 2nd, 1954 against the New York Giants. Colbert and Musial are the only […]

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Isao Harimoto: The Greatest Hitter in Japanese Baseball History

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 […]

Big Sam Thompson

Most RBI Per 9 Innings

Samuel “Big Sam” Thompson holds the career record for most RBIs per 9 innings played. No one else is even close. For example, in 1895, he averaged 1.387 RBIs per 9 innings; in 1894, his average was 1.382; and, in 1887, his average was 1.307. His closest competitor was Hack Wilson in 1930 who averaged 1.232 […]

Hank Aaron of the Milwaukee Braves narrowly avoids a collision with New York Yankee First baseman Bill “Moose” Skowron. (July 1958)

Career Total Bases

Hank Aaron holds the career total bases record by a wide margin with 6,856. He also scored over 100 runs a season for 15 seasons, a Major League record.      

George Herman "Babe" Ruth at Seattle’s Dugdale Park, October 19, 1924. (Source: Seattlepi.com file/MOHAI)

Career High Slugging Percentage and OPS

Babe Ruth holds the career record for Slugging Percentage with .690*. He also holds the career record for On Base plus Slugging Percentage with 1.164*. The leader in both categories among active MLB leaders at the time of this post? Albert Pujols (SLG .610 & OPS 1.027). *minimum 5,000 plate appearances    

Pete Rose takes out Ray Fosse at home plate to score the winning run of the 1970 All-Star Game in Cincinnati. The National League won 5-4.

Pete Rose Records

Pete “Charlie Hustle” Rose, currently banned from baseball for life, holds many records, at least 3 of which will probably never be broken: most career games played (3, 562), most career At Bats (14,053), and most career plate appearances (15,890).      

Ted Williams with Mickey Mantle in 1959.

Career High On Base Percentages

  Ted Williams holds the career record for On Base Percentage (minimum 5,000 plate appearances) with .482. Mickey Mantle holds the career record for OBP (minimum 5,000 PAs) for switch-hitters with .421. In case you’re wondering, the leader among active players, Todd Helton (over 7,000 PAs) has a career OBP of .419. As for switch-hitters, Lance […]

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

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. […]

Rogers Hornsby

The Over 350 Club

Only 3 hitters ever recorded batting averages over .350 (minimum 1,500 at bats): Ty Cobb (left-handed), .366; Rogers Hornsby (right-handed), .358; and Joe Jackson (left-handed), .356.    

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Wahoo Sam Crawford

Ty Cobb (left), “Shoeless Joe” Jackson (center) and Sam Crawford in 1912. Crawford, known as “Wahoo Sam” (he was from Wahoo, Nebraska), holds the career record for triples with 309. He was a line drive hitter with excellent base-running skills.