Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine
Updated 03-15-05: Repaired all outdated links.

This article is a review of web sites offering Major League Baseball player statistics in the form of individual player cards. Fifteen distinct sites are compared on the basis of which stats are presented and what features they include (such as split stats, minor league stats, transaction information). Individual site summaries give a brief overview of what is notable and unique about each site.
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Here's a pinch hit from regular Batter's Box reader Will Rainey:

For my first effort at an original contribution to Da Box, I present for your consideration an overview of "the ones who got away." One of the spinoff benefits of Leigh Sprague's magnificent overview of the Jays trade history is the ability to examine that history from a variety of angles. One of those angles is the history of the involvement of "prospects" in these trades.
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John Gizzi is not the kind of person to walk away from a job that pays a free fantasy team every year. I'm a journalist. So I've returned to write twice a week for ESPN, something that gets harder each week, but also something that is supposed to look good on a resume.

It seems they want us to start earlier every year, this time around being February, so I've posted my first update of the new season. While Kent has abandoned his post as Blue Jays fantasy correspondent -- making the rest of us look that much better and worse at the same time -- Scott Lucas and I are continuing our work for the World Wide Leader. For those of you unfamiliar with ESPN's fantasy correspondents, Scott covers the Rangers while I handle the A's.

And don't worry; I won't do this each time I update. But Lucas and a few other correspondents are worth reading each time they write a new column. I'd like to think that I am, too. Enjoy.
Only 76 messages at the last hijack central, but it was starting to drop well down the page, so let's start a new one.

Isn't Karros the kind of player we would rail at the Pirates and Tigers and Royals for signing? Unlike if one of those teams signed him, however, Karros won't likely be counted on for much in Oakland -- a good thing, since he won't provide much. A Karros/Scott Hatteberg platoon is a fabulous idea -- at least it would have been five years ago. The A's have assembled, at this point, a HOF-calibre pitching staff to go along with a Tigeresque lineup. It will be an interesting year in Oakland, considering how improved the Angels figure to be.
This has already been posted as a comment, but to get it the extra attention it deserves (and to facilitate linking by some interested parties - thanks guys) we are presenting some research by Mike Green on Cory Lidle. Thanks Mike!
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It's Groundhog Day, and you know what that means ... it's time for 2004 pre-season nominations for the Annual Batter's Box Joaquin Andujar Award. The player who will eventually be awarded the 2004 Andujar will be the epitome, in retrospect, of a low-risk, high-reward transaction. (If those two sentences sound Bill Murray-esque Groundhog Day familiar, well they should.)

Batter's Box authors and readers are invited to cast their ballots for the top five pre-season candidates for the 2004 Andujar. Points will be tabulated on a 5-4-3-2-1 basis and balloting will close at midnight on Monday, February 23, at which time the pre-season list will be published.

To win an Andujar ...
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"Baseball's strongest division," says Peter Gammons in his latest column about the American League East, and who could disagree? Peter talks briefly about the Jays and how they're poised to be contenders for the next several years, and but for the fact he calls Guillermo Quiroz "Francisco," he's certainly correct. It's encouraging that the "concerns" he raises for the Jays include minor things like fifth starters and fourth outfielders -- nothing major, and frankly I'm more concerned about the left side of the infield and regression by Reed Johnson.
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Lurch, the athlete-turned-ballplayer, was impossible not to root for, and at times nearly impossible to watch. I hope he can consolidate himself in Tampa Bay; he's a hard worker and nice fellow, and if he can learn to trust his stuff and avoid getting too predictable, he still may have some success.

Please share your memories of Mark Hendrickson in this thread.
There’s more to the Box than just baseball. Not much more, but a little…
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Time for a new hijack thread as the old one has 117 posts in it. Any news you'd like to share?

First person to correctly guess what I'm referencing in the title wins a beverage at the next Cheer Club game.
Anyone who has ever implemented a technical upgrade, or been affected by one, knows they can get complicated. We've been tweaking a new design for Da Box for a few weeks now, and after a great deal of testing, we're as ready as we'll ever be to implement it. Please be patient with us tonight and tomorrow, as we go live with our new look. The site may be slow at times, because this will involve several complete rebuilds of the archives. Most glitches will be temporary, but we do appreciate bug reports if you are experiencing technical difficulties. With any luck, we'll be better than ever by Monday.

Joe Drew, who hosts the site on his server, has done yeoman work on this project. If he's the Barry Bonds of HTML, I'm a utility infielder in an independent league. On a test site, Joe has made Greymatter, our blog engine, do several things I didn't know were possible. We are also grateful to the Blue Jays communications department, which allowed us to use some player images for our new banner, and to Aaron "Named_for_Hank" Reynolds for his graphics wizardry.

I hope everyone enjoys the changes. Meet the new Box, same as the old Box...
In our final instalment, Leigh Sprague reviews the trades made by current GM J.P. Ricciardi.

Thanks to Leigh for a great week of reading.
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I think this merits a separate discussion, because it's an interesting topic that should illustrate how far the thinking of GMs has come in seven years.

In the Gord Ash trade catalogue thread, dp said that he thought the Garcia/Merced/Plesac for prospects deal was "just bad luck" in the way it didn't turn out. I'm not picking on dp, who typically gives great insight, but I have to disagree with him here -- I don't think the Jays got very much, and they should have known it at the time. Let me explain why.
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No earth shattering Blue Jays news to report today. There are, however, quite a few articles you may be interested in reading during your coffee break.
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The Batter's Box All-Prime-Minister Team
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