A blog introducing readers to the book Baseball Greatness: Top Players and Teams According to Wins Above Average, 1901-2017, and including annual updates beginning in 2018.
Tuesday, April 20, 2021
"Whatever you already think about measuring baseball greatness, Kaiser's tour de force will blow your mind…. In these days of websites and statistical black boxes and faith-based beliefs, we owe our gratitude to Kaiser, who shows all his work and doesn't flinch when the facts call for popping a few balloons." --Rob Neyer, author Power Ball: Anatomy of a Modern Baseball Game
"Baseball Greatness honors under appreciated all-time great players by better incorporating fielding value for everyday players (e.g., Jimmy Wynn and Keith Hernandez) and filtering out team effects on perceived pitcher value (e.g., Wes Ferrell, Luis Tiant, and Dave Stieb). But more than that, author and real-world historian David Kaiser gives baseball fans a new and sophisticated history of the game: how owners and front office managers have built (and failed to build) great teams; how rare it has been that team greatness has relied on great pitching; and much more." --Michael Humphreys, author of Wizardry: Baseball's All-Time Greatest Fielders Revealed
"The Sabermetric revolution in baseball analysis is no longer in its infancy and the basic principles are now embraced widely in the press, on the air, and by average fans. David Kaiser has done a fine job in clearly explaining the logic behind the calculations and has provided a very welcome synthesis across the various era of Major League Baseball. This book is recommended for those who wish to have a better understanding of the context of modern (and future) baseball analysis."--Dave Smith, founder, Retrosheet.org
"Baseball's stately pace encourages discussions, with 'Who was better?' being a favorite topic. David Kaiser's nominations, making full use of Michael Humphrey's authoritative solution to the 'is it fielding or pitching' defensive dilemma, are presented in a delightful style." --Richard Cramer, Ph.D., founder, STATS INC.
Thursday, January 14, 2021
Curt Schilling and PEDs
I have linked this post on the SABR List. It was part of the ongoing discussion about Curt Schilling's stats and his Hall of Fame candidacy, The moderators have refused to post it. The reason, evidently, is one that I mentioned below--that in the post I cite my book, Baseball Greatness. To repeat: I didn't cite it to "promote it," I cited it because it's the source of the data that I'm drawing on in this discussion. The data had been questioned precisely because I was obeying the moderators' previous injunction not to mention my book anymore. Citing your sources is what is called standard scholarly practice. If you agree that the moderators are imposing an absurd rule, please let them know. Thanks.
Kerry Keane initially tried to refute what I said by misquoting me. He claimed that I said Schilling was the only pitcher in MLB history who have never reached 4 WAA until he was 30. What I actually said was: