Results tagged ‘ Maury Wills ’

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By Samantha Carr

The Hall of Fame’s newest exhibit One for the Books: Baseball Records and the Stories Behind Them opened over Memorial Day Weekend. Over the past few weeks, visitors have been able to get a full view of the new space and all it has to offer.

Although the videos and interactive trivia quiz are pretty cool, the most interesting piece in the exhibit may be the Digital Top Ten Towers.

Located in the center of the exhibit, the two large four-screen displays allow visitors to experience records like never before in the Museum. Dozens of statistics are available in lists based on batting, fielding, pitching and team categories.

Each statistic displays the year’s active and career single-season record holders and active and career all-time record holders. And visitors can scroll through time and view the lists at any point in baseball history.

One family scrolled to 2011 and saw that Yankees captain Derek Jeter had 2,989 career hits (2,990 as of this morning) and is No. 1 on the active list. Dressed in her Jeter jersey, mom showed her son that her favorite player was just 11 hits from a sacred milestone. Her husband then pressed on Jeter’s name and the screen revealed more information, including all the lists that Jeter appears on.

The Top Ten Tower allows fans to learn about players like former Yankees infielder Snuffy Stirnweiss, who was on the active single-season lists in both doubles and triples in 1950. They can learn that in 1907, Hall of Famer Nap Lajoie led all second baseman in all-time and active career fielding percentage with a .962 average. Or that Maury Wills played 165 games at shortstop in 1962.

They may have only been on exhibit for a few weeks, but the Top Ten Towers are quickly becoming a fan favorite. One fan can be checking out the home run lists in 2011 while just around the corner, another is viewing the shutouts top ten from 1945.

“Walter Johnson had the most all-time career shutouts with 110,” said a fan to his son. “Think that will ever be broken? I don’t think so.”

Samantha Carr is the manager of web and digital media for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

Happy birthday, Luis Aparicio

Carr_90.jpg
Muder_90.jpgBy Samantha Carr and Craig Muder

Few players can say they changed the way baseball is played. Before Luis Aparicio revitalized the running game 50 years ago, the stolen base was on its way to becoming an archaic footnote.

Aparicio, who turns 75 Wednesday, turned the baseball world upside down in 1959 by stealing 56 bases for the Chicago White Sox. Only one other American League team — the Detroit Tigers with 68 — had as many steals as Aparicio that year. The Sox shortstop finished second in the AL Most Valuable Player voting that year, leading Chicago to the AL pennant.

4-30-09-Carr-Muder_Aparicio.jpgAparicio had led the AL in steals in each of his first three seasons before 1959 and went on to lead the league every season through 1964. That year, with a career-high 57 steals for the Orioles, Aparicio swiped more bags than six other AL teams.

But baseball was catching up to Aparicio — especially in the National League, where Maury Wills and the Dodgers were building an offense around speed. By 1969, when Aparicio topped the 20-steal mark for the 12th and final time, five AL clubs recorded at least 100 stolen bases — a mark not reached in the Junior Circuit from 1946-56.

The Venezuelan-born Aparicio, a 13-time All-Star, played every one of his 2,583 Major League games in the field at shortstop, winning nine Gold Gloves. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame 25 years ago after an 18-year big league career with the White Sox, Orioles and Red Sox.

Happy birthday, Little Louie!

Samantha Carr is the media relations coordinator at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Craig Muder is director of communications for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

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