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Infographic: The Evolution of Offense in Baseball

OffenseEvolution

Bart Giamatti* once said, “[Baseball] breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall all alone. You count on it, rely on it to buffer the passage of time, to keep the memory of sunshine and high skies alive, and then just when the days are all twilight, when you need it most, it stops.” It was at that point, when the chill rains came in early November, that I first started playing around with today’s infographic. Little did I know that it would take me more than three months to complete. The sheer fact that I kept working on it that long speaks volumes for the charm of Giamatti’s game. But now, with baseball beginning again just like everything else, I’ve finally completed it. What I’ve done is put together an infographic featuring the way offense in baseball has evolved since the dawn of the 20th century. The way teams score runs, and take their at-bats, has changed dramatically over the course of 114 years, and I’ve tried to find a way to visualize it. Enjoy! Continue reading

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