Negro League stats now available at Baseball-Reference.com

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Caveats about incomplete data and stuff notwithstanding: This. Is. Cool:

This data is constructed from the best available information as provided by Larry Lester, Wayne Stivers and Dick Clark of the Negro Leagues Researchers and Authors Group. It contains data culled from newspaper boxscores, covering league sanctioned games from 1920 to 1948, which was produced for a study sponsored by Major League Baseball and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. It reflects totals as compiled by the NLRAG up to 2006. As new credible information is continually unearthed, these numbers will continue to change.

Add this to other great work being done on the Negro Leagues, and researchers, would-be researchers, and the merely curious have a whole lot of neat stuff to sift though.

Joe Maddon: “I have a defensive foot fetish.”

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The Cubs’ defense — or lack thereof this year — has been a topic of conversation as it could help explain why the team hasn’t played at the elite level it played at last year.

Manager Joe Maddon tried to go into detail about that but ended up channeling his inner Rex Ryan. Via CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney.

Well then.

The Nationals have scored 62 runs during four Joe Ross starts

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If, in the future, Joe Ross ever complains about a lack of run support, point to his first four starts of the 2017 season.

Ross started on April 19 in Atlanta against the Braves, on April 25 in Colorado against the Rockies, on April 30 at home against the Mets, and on May 23 at home against the Mariners. In those games, the Nats’ offense scored 14, 15, 23, and 10 runs respectively for a total of 62 runs, or an average of 15.5 per start. Ross was the pitcher of record for seven, eight, 10, and 10 runs for a total of 35 runs (8.75 runs per start), which would still make him the major league leader in run support by that restrictive standard.

Among qualified starters — Ross did not qualify — entering Tuesday’s action, the Rockies’ Antonio Senzatela led the way according to ESPN, averaging 7.11 runs of support in nine starts. The Rockies scored double-digit runs in only three of those starts, oddly enough.

Per the Nationals, the 62 runs of support for Ross is a major league record in a pitcher’s first four starts of a season.