Baseball Prehistory | Deadball Era | Liveball Era | Post-War
Expansion | Free Agency | Modern Era
We’re pleased to welcome Joshua Maciel to the site, and today marks his first post here as an author. Josh designed the original graphic that eventually turned into WARGraphs, and we look forward to more of his interesting visualizations going forward.
Admittedly, I don’t know a lot about players from long ago, save the ones who are famous for one reason or another (I hope I’m not alone). If they weren’t in Ken Burns’ “Baseball” documentary, then I probably don’t know much much about them. Sometimes I’ll see an article like this one by Steve Treder that brings an older player to light. And sometimes, usually around this time of the year, someone will talk about Hall of Fame snubs, like in this article by Adam Darowski about the best players not in the Hall of Fame. But for the most part, I’m willfully ignorant.
Looking at all the players in baseball is a daunting task. There are a lot of them. There are a lot of eras. How do you judge people who played back in the 19th century when you are only familiar with the players of more modern eras? Even if I look at the player page for someone like Cupid Childs, what can I really figure out? He is totally removed from context; how can I judge a guy who played so long ago against his peers if I’m not familiar with them? I get lost easily in the numbers. I can look and stare at stats until the cows come home, but not get anywhere because of the lack of context.
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