Archive for Lists and Rankings

Pros and Cons of Taking My Seven-Month Old to a Mets Game


1. Getting out of our apartment.
2. Getting to go to a baseball game.
3. Having the memory of taking him to a baseball game.
4. Having pictures of the two of us at a baseball game.
5. Posting pictures on Facebook of the two of us at a baseball game.
6. Eating a hot dog.
7. I don’t think he needs his own ticket.
8. Tickets are super-cheap anyway.
9. Getting out of our apartment.
10. Getting to go to a baseball game.


1. Putting sunscreen on him is kind of annoying.
2. Getting to the game would be sort of a huge ordeal.
3. They do not have pureed hot dogs.
4. He has no idea what a baseball game is.
5. He will need a nap.
6. There is no way I want to change a diaper in a bathroom at a baseball stadium.
7. There is no way he will not need me to change his diaper in the time between leaving our apartment and returning to our apartment.
8. He will need another nap.
9. He will probably not have any interest in the baseball game.
10. He will put his hand in the mustard on my hot dog.
11. He will probably touch something dirty and then put his hand in his mouth.
12. The “something dirty” is probably the hot dog.
13. He will not cheer at the right times.
14. He will be bad at catching foul balls.
15. He will not really know where we are or remember this activity.
16. I will need a nap.
17. I will be risking that he becomes a Mets fan.

Ranking Baseball’s Center-Field Camera Shots (2014 Update)

Three years ago, in these same electronic pages, the present author published a ranking of all 30 clubs’ center-field broadcast camera angles. The immediate purpose: to create a reference for anyone with access to MLB.TV, MLB Extra Innings, or some other manner of game video, so that he or she might be better equipped to choose the ideal feed.

What follows is the product of an almost identical exercise, except updated to account for more recently adopted center-field cameras (or, in the case of Miami, more recently constructed ballparks).

In general, cameras have been assessed according to the ability with which they document the pitcher-batter encounter. More specifically, I’ve utilized three guiding criteria, as follow:

  • Shot Angle
    In which more central and lower is generally preferred.
  • Shot Size
    In which closer up and not longer is generally preferred.
  • Whim
    In which the author’s own intuition has been utilized.

In what follows, I’ve embedded screencaps for all 30 of the league’s center-field cameras, broken down into three categories: Bottom Five, Top Ten, and The Rest. In every case, I’ve used images featuring only right-handed pitchers — so that the orientation of that pitcher’s body might least distort the perception of the camera angle. Furthermore, I’ve attempted to identify feeds from regional broadcasts — as opposed to national broadcasts, which might utilize a different feed altogether.

The reader will note that straight-on shots constitute the most highly ranked of the center-field cameras. This makes sense, of course: straight-on shots portray lefties and righties in the same way and document pitch movement in a way that off-set cameras can’t. The reader will also note that a small collection of notes and observations appears at the very bottom of this post.

Finally, if the reader finds that I’ve erred in any of the screen captures here, don’t hesitate to make note of same below.

Bottom Five
30. Colorado Rockies


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Baseball-Related Things About Which I’ve Thought, Today


As there is no baseball of note to be played today, nor will there be any played tomorrow or the next day or the next, we must fill our baseball-craving minds with whatever baseball-related slurry is kicking around up top. An example of these things, a very specific David-G-Temple-related example, are as follows:

  • Base stealing
  • Prominent base stealers
  • Cocaine
  • Spreadsheets/Charts related to baseball
  • Writing creatively about baseball
  • Switching chairs, in a sad effort to hopefully enable writing creatively about baseball
  • Pete Rose
  • Transportation to Spring Training in Arizona
  • My being too fat to fit in the clothes I wore to Spring Training in Arizona last year
  • A self-imposed diet to enable me to fit in the clothes I wore to Spring Training in Arizona last year
  • County Stadium in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • The baseball-related podcast I have to re-edit due to computer issues
  • A baseball-related short story I promised to someone
  • How I haven’t written something creative about baseball in a while
  • Making a list about baseball-related things about which I’ve though, today

Jobs for Charlie Manuel

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at Washington Nationals

You may remember a while back when then-Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel was fired in the midst of a disappointing season. There was a mixture of anger, confusion, and sadness entwined in this event. But fear not, fair NotGraphs reader, as it appears that the Phillies are reaching out and looking to find ‘ol Cholly another job within the ball club. The following are some open posts for which the Phillies are looking to utilize Manuel’s talents.

  • Assistant Varmint Wrangler
  • Head Varmint Wrangler
  • Executive Grandpa
  • Associate Historian in Charge of Storytellin’
  • Manager – Department of Handshakes that Last too Long
  • Christmas Party Santa Claus (part-time)
  • Chief Swearing Strategist
  • False Teeth Consultant
  • Vice President of Belly Laughs
  • Lead Beer Taster
  • Chief Technology Complainer
  • Assistant Director of Community Outreach and General Outrage
  • Whirlpool Soiler (contract-only)
  • Project Lead – Chitlins
  • Napper-in-Residence
  • Liaison – Department of Balms and Salves

We here at NotGraphs wish Charlie the best with his transition.

Leaderboards of Labor [Day]

I am posting this not on Labor Day. It is because, in solidarity with the continuing American labor movement, I did not labor on American Labor Day. Instead, I was alternately sipping Crystal Light beside a plastic wading pool and lobbing some pitches to my niece, nephew, and fiancée.

In honor of said, below are some leaderboards that measure how much Major League Baseball players have labored so far this season.


*The FanGraphs custom leaderboard that I used to create the above customized custom leaderboard can be found here.


Note: the “TB&” stat is Total Bases plus BB, HBP, and SB attempts — basically letting you know how much, more or less, a player has run around (or sauntered) of his own accord. It doesn’t include other base running, and when you start to look at TB&/PA, it’s pretty worthless (because SBA is added in), but that’s why this is on NotGraphs and not on FanGraphs — well, that and a number of other really good reasons.

*The FanGraphs custom leaderboard that I used to create the above customized custom leaderboard can be found here.

All Two-First-Names Team


As someone who has chosen to watch the Astros, I’ve subjected myself to watching a lot of Brett Wallace. This does not bring joy into my life. I find this odd since I always have had a proclivity to players that have last names that could also be first names. I can’t explain this penchant, so don’t ask. I just do. Back off, OK?

To curb my Brett-Wallace induced depression, I did some research to create the all-first-name team, based on FanGraphs WAR. The following were the fruits of the search:

C – Russell Martin (3.9, 3rd among catchers)
1B – Allen Craig (2.3, 9th)
2B – Darwin Barney (0.4, 15th)
SS – Ian Desmond (4.2 ,1st)
3B – Ed Lucas (0.5, 25th)*
OF –  Austin Jackson, (2.8, 17th), Alex Gordon (2.5, 23rd), Jay Bruce (2.5, 24th)
SP – Matt Harvey (5.7, 1st), Cliff Lee (3.1, 19th), Lance Lynn (2.7, 28th)
RP – Addison Reed (1.8, 5th), Joe Nathan (1.6, 12th)

*= As there were no candidates among qualified batters, I had to set a 200 PA minimum to find a third baseman.

Every Major-League Ballpark, Ranked by Walk Score

About an hour ago, the present author published a post in these absurd electronic pages in which he attempted to assess objectively the relative merits of all 30 major-league ballparks by location using the population density of each park’s attendant zip code.

About 59 minutes ago, concerned reader The Wrong Alex (and also other concerned reader Bryan) suggested that perhaps using Walk Scores (from might be the most effective proxy for what the author is attempting to represent. A Walk Score, according to the relevant site, “is a number between 0 and 100 that measures the walkability of any address.”

And here’s a more detailed explanation of the significance of different scores:

Rating Image

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Rating Ballpark Locations Objectively: A Very Crude Attempt

See the updated version of these ratings using Walk Score here.

Last night, the author attended with his wife/PCA an independent Frontier League game between the Schaumburg Boomers and Traverse City Beach Bums at the latter’s home park in Traverse City, Michigan. While so doing, that same author and that same wife stumbled into a discussion of what ballparks — major-league or otherwise — might be said to have the most appealing locations. Wrigley Field, for example, is excellent in this regard: it’s situated in a lively urban neighborhood, surrounded by bars and restaurants*, and is accessible by public transit — more easily than by car, in fact. From the author’s experience, much the same can be said for Fenway Park in Boston and San Francisco’s AT&T Park. Angels Stadium, on the other hand — as with any park surrounded entirely by parking lot — offers little in terms of this sort of ambiance.

*Although, it should be noted, not necessarily bars a reasonable person would find him- or herself patronizing.

It occurred to the author that there might be a means by which to assess objectively the relative merits of a ballpark’s location. The table below — of all 30 major-league ballparks sorted by the population density of their relevant zip codes — represents an entirely preliminary and very crude attempt at doing that. The author’s reasoning is thus: areas with many bars, other sorts of businesses, etc., tend also to be densely populated; areas that are surrounded by parking lots and accessible almost exclusively by car will tend to be less densely populated.

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Dave Cameron Power Rankings

It’s a question which, if not as old as time, per se, is at least as old as a one-day-old thing — namely, who, among all the world’s Daves or Davids Cameron, is the most powerful?

What follows is an attempt to answer to that same question, where power has been defined by a complex and proprietary algorithm informed primarily by personal wealth, social and political influence, and how easily the relevant Dave Cameron could have a person just, like, assassinated or whatever.

Using that same flawless methodology, here are the five most powerful Daves or Davids Cameron at the moment:

DC WD 2 
5. Dave Cameron, Web Editor, Ithaca College
Powerful if for no other reason than he’s cornered the market on Dave Cameron-related social-media handles, including at Instagram, Tumblr, and Twitter.

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Picking the All-Stars: Actual Stars Edition


Over the last couple days, Dave Cameron has submitted what he considers to be the most reasonably constructed rosters for both the American League and National League‘s All-Star teams, respectively. What follows is the author’s own version of that same exercise — except for actual stars in the universe.

Here are the author’s choices for the All-Star Star team, by luminosity classification:

Supergiant: R136a1
Discovered by British scientists in 2010. Most massive and also most luminous star known. One weakness: part of decidedly substandard constellation.

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