Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Top 5 Baseball Sites on the Web

This week on Wild-Card Wednesdays, columnist Doug Silversten examines his top 5 favorite baseball sites on the web.

So many to choose from, so little time. Let's get right to the list. Here are my five favorite baseball websites, in reverse order of importance:

5. Baseball Prospectus
The only reason this site is not higher in this list is that much of the content is subscription based. For the most part, we agree with what Paul Graham had to say in his excellent article about Web 2.0:
On the web, articles you have to pay for might as well not exist. Even if you were willing to pay to read them yourself, you can't link to them. They're not part of the conversation.
However, for a reasonable $35 a year, Baseball Prospectus offers perhaps the best commentary and analysis on the Web. Considering that many GMs now make it daily reading, it should be high on any serious baseball fan's list as well.

4. Major League Baseball: The Official Site
Yes, putting up baseball's official site may be a bit tacky. However, it is impressive how much offers. First off, the free fantasy games. "Beat the Streak" and "MLB Survivor" are so addictive, even if you realize the odds of winning are only slightly better than winning the lottery. And then, for a reasonable annual fee, you can watch or listen to almost ANY GAME. If you are a fantasy addict, like many of Baseball For Thought's columnists, this a feature that can pretty much guarantee you will never leave a computer from April through early October.

3. Fire Joe Morgan
Next to a Yankees win, there is nothing I can't stand more than ridiculous comments from TV announcers and reporters. This site is dedicated to pointing them out and tearing apart ridiculous comments and arguments to shreds. Often, it is outright hilarious. A daily must-read during the season.

2. Aaron's Baseball Blog
This site is sort of a sentimental choice for me, as it was one of the very first blogs I read regularly. At the time, I don't even think I knew what a blog was. But here was this random Twins fan on the Net that was writing smarter baseball commentary than most mainstream writers. Aaron and his blog was recently featured in Sports Illustrated and his career seems to have taken off, but I can proudly say I was one of his first loyal readers. And also, thanks to this site, I know far more about the Twins than any Mets/A's fan living in New York should.

1. Baseball-Reference
While choosing which of the above sites made the short list was a tough task, there was never a question what site would be ranked number one. Baseball-Referece IS the best baseball site on the web. Hell, forget the "baseball" qualifier. B-Ref is THE BEST SITE ON THE WEB. If you don't have this site bookmarked, you're not a true baseball fan. This site has EVERYTHING, and it has a brilliantly simple layout. What IMDB is for movie fans, B-Ref is for baseball fans and more. Once in, you mindlessly start clicking around. Any loyal B-Refer knows what I am talking go to check David Wright's 2005 HR total, and an hour later you find yourself on the 1919 World Series page, admiring Dickie Kerr's dominating performance and 2-0 record in a thrown series. Who is Dickie Kerr? Well, that's the point. best thing to happen since sliced bread.

Wild-Card Wednesdays appears every Wednesday


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