Mariano Rivera’s cutter

Here’s a video from The New York Times I came across that describes what made Mariano Rivera such an effective closer.  The video is wonderfully concise, yet explains the mechanics of Rivera’s cutter in an easy-to-follow manner complete with some excellent graphics.

 

 


A Front-Row Seat

This is a cool piece put out by the New York Times, which revolves around this photo taken during Game 5 of last year’s World Series, when Eric Hosmer made his now-infamous mad dash to the plate to tie the game.

metsfans-callout-pic-superJumbo

The Times managed to track down eleven of the folks sitting in the stands in this photo and asked for their perspectives on how it all went down.  They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and I think that definitely applies in this case.  All the same, I still find it interesting to explore the responses of the fans that the Times managed to interview.

You can see the frustration on our faces. It was just: ‘I can’t believe this just happened.’ Everyone was in the same shocked state of mind. This can’t be! It just can’t be! The game should be over.

~Sal Monaco

You can find the complete collection of interviews, including audio recordings, here: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/04/01/sports/baseball/ny-mets-kansas-city-royals-opener.html


This day in baseball: Challenging the reserve clause

On December 29, 1969, the New York Times reported that Curt Flood planned to challenge the reserve clause by suing Major League Baseball.  According to the Times:

A major attack on the reserve clause, a feature of baseball contracts that binds a player to his original team and makes trades possible, is being mounted by Curt Flood, with Arthur Goldberg, a former United States Supreme Court Justice, as his counsel.

The case made its way to the Supreme Court, which ruled in favor of Major League Baseball, but the Court’s decision left open the possibility for closer examination and further challenges. The reserve clause was finally struck down in 1975.

curt-flood

Business Insider


Infographic: Baseball payrolls

Here is an infographic developed by the New York Times in 2010, depicting the average payroll and average number of wins by teams around Major League Baseball from 2001 to 2010.  As one would expect, there is a direct correlation between the two.

New York Times

New York Times


New York Times baseball map

Feeding my seemingly growing obsession with baseball fan maps, the New York Times published this interactive map a couple days ago — again, based on Facebook data — that allows us to to zoom in on which team fans root for, down to the zip code.  For example, I can tell you that my hometown contains 69% Royals fans, and my current neighborhood comprises 49% Royals fans.  After the Royals, 12% of my current neighbors root for the St. Louis Cardinals, while 7% pull for the Boston Red Sox (…really?).  Things get especially interested along both coastlines, where a greater saturation of teams results in a greater conflict of loyalties.

In addition to the large, nationwide map, the Times generated fourteen smaller maps, highlighting baseball’s biggest rivalries.  If you would like to read the article and explore the interactive map, just click on the image below, and it will direct you to the site.  Enjoy!

Click on the map to link to the article


One man vs. the national game

Here’s a clip I found that is simultaneously amusing and disturbing.  I suppose it goes to show the power and influence of the game of baseball, even in its earliest years.  The story originally printed in the New York Times on 23 September 1891.

hounded

For a larger version of the article, see the file in the New York Times archives here.