Talk:Perfect game/Archive 1

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missing info

The table is missing some important information. Eg, who won. As well, there is no score, no note as to whether a night or day game (important since lights came in), and so on. I'll try to come back and add more when I can get the data together. In the meantime, Johnson's game brings this stuff to mind now, so if anyone else wants to ... ww 18:24, 1 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Randy how old??

All the news reports had Johnson as the oldest ever to pitch a perfect game, so 30 sounds too young. Thoughts? ww 13:32, 28 Jun 2004 (UTC)

That's right. Randy Johnson was born on September 9, 1963, making him forty years old. See the Arizona Diamondbacks : Player Information page for details. I'll fix the page now. -- TomPreuss 19:51, 6 Jul 2004 (UTC)

numbers in the table

Okay, forget about the Sep. 9th/10th thing, I figured it out. Now then, on to something else. The second number after the slash there is the pitch count. Before it had just the number of strikes that he threw. I fixed it to show the total pitches, according to the box score. Why is the page formatted in this way, meaning "age/pitch count" ? Is this format used anywhere that I don't know about? I think we might need to clarify that the first number is age somehow. Thoughts? -- TomPreuss 12:26, 7 Jul 2004 (UTC)

TP, It's my doing. It's formatted that way because both numbers were of interest, and I was trying to cram the information in. No other reason. It's also why day/night is included also. I did consider confusion between the two, but no one's ever come close to pitching a perfect perfect game (ie, 27 pitches) and so I expected there would be little prospect of confusing a pitch count in the 80s+ with a world class athlete's age (under 40, I thought, would last forever). There's other interesting stuff which might be included, such as the list of players in perfect games, there is some overlap. And Vin Scully has announced three.
Does that help clear up some questions? ww 14:14, 7 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Much better, thanks ww. So should there be something like "(team) age/pitch count" somewhere? I noticed that the pitch count is the only number to have a description after it (pitches), while the other numbers, like the score and attendance, do not. Being a baseball fan, I know that numbers like 3-0 and 2-0 are perfect game scores, and numbers in the thousands are attendance. But does the casual Wikipedia user know that? I don't think it would hurt to add "teams, stadium, day/night, attendance, final score" in some how. -- TomPreuss 16:49, 7 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, I just wanted to add that I understand the size limitations of using tables. To bad our words are so big, you should see how nicely everything fits in Japanese. -- TomPreuss 16:53, 7 Jul 2004 (UTC)
TP, I thought about labeling the nrs, maybe even in a title line in the table, but ya run out of space real fast. And I was trying to keep in mind those with small displays or peculiar behaving browsers (ie, all of us, I guess). I changed all (except the first two) to teama at teamb rather than teama vs teamb to make clearer where the game was played. Couldn't find where the first two were played. Any ideas about how to do this while not deranging folks' displays?
BTW, I've added indented to the discussion here so I can follow what's going on. Hope that's all right. ww 17:53, 7 Jul 2004 (UTC)
The indents are great. Regarding the format of the table, it seems like a difficult task. I'm open to suggestions. I think Richmond's game was played at the Worcester Agricultural Fairgrounds. See [1]. Also, this page of the Baseball Almanac seems to be on point. But I'm not really sure, and need someone else to take a look. I can't easily find any other information on those two games, and this copy of the eighth edition of The Baseball Encyclopedia on my lap sure isn't doing any good. -- TomPreuss 02:21, 8 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I corrected the name of the Worcester team - they had none! See a letter by a local sports writer and guru [here]. I also added Richmond's first name, and made pages for him, the Worcesters, and the Fairground. I used to live across the street! --Sfoskett 01:25, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

<--- to many : for me, let's start over at the left.

TP, I finally looked at the Japanese link you gave above. ! Wish I read the language, but vertical sequence sure helps. Too bad all I studied was Japanese history and literature (in trans, of course). Your baseball almanac link includes some additional information, especially on the 'almost' games, that would be well if included here. Do you want to take it on? I've tried to find more on the two 1880s 'perfect' games, but w/o much luck, either. Surely someone knows? ww 15:29, 9 Jul 2004 (UTC)

format assist much better

Wow, an amazing improvement in that table. Nice job there by User:Minesweeper. I'm still looking up stuff on those old games. Nothing yet. And now there's all those other things to look up too. Fun stuff. -- TomPreuss 17:25, 14 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I agree and have left him a note saying so. Now we have room to add stuff without making an unreadable mess. ... Opposing pitcher(s), catcher(s), notable events maybe... Did you know that after Joss died the (next?) year, the first 'All-Star' game was arranged to benefit his family. Ban Johnson was agin' it, but it looked as though players were going ahead anyway, so he finally gave permission. Joss was widely liked. ww 18:30, 14 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Bison problem

I'm from the West and I know bisons. And the Buffalo Bisons linked here in the 2nd perfect game aren't the right Bisons. This is a minor league team, are still playing, and can't be the team that played in Ward's perfect game. Unless it's that stuff I was smoking.... Help someone!?? ww 16:04, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

According to my research there was indeed a National League team known as the Buffalo Bisons who were in that league from 1879 through 1885. A second team known as the Buffalo Bisons played in the Players League in 1890 and a third Buffalo Bisons team played in the Western Association from 1892 through 1900, eventually moving to Boston, joining the new American League and, after several years, becoming known as the Boston Red Sox.--rwhempel 02:36, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

Boston Pigrims

Research has shown the name 'Boston Pilgrims' was not used in the early 1900s, and was invented sometime after the fact. See Boston Red Sox for links to the research of papers of the day. Changed team name to 'Americans'. Econrad 16:12, 11 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Burdette or Spahn?

I checked one reference which claims the Haddix game was against Spahn. Can anyone check to be sure it's Burdette? At least we don't have anyone claiming it was their third starter, Rain (remember, "Burdette and Spahn and pray for rain"). Thanks. ww 21:28, 5 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I have a book about perfect games, and it says that the opposing pitcher was Lew Burdette. He's also listed as the Braves pitcher for the game on baseball-almanac.com. (BTW...it didn't go "Burdette and Spahn and pray for rain" the phrase was "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain.")

Actually, the phrase was "Spahn and Sain and two days of rain."

Really? The version I've always read went "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain." The lines from the poem are different, but the chant/cheer/phrase from the fans was always quoted as "...and pray for rain."

Around the world perfect games

What about perfect games in other nations that play baseball (such as Japan)? And also what about little league and the minor leagues?

In principle, I'm all for it, but Little League stuff seems to me to be too vaiable in the level of competition (kids have a good bit of variance in how rapidly they mature). And there's the lack of any info (generally) other than score and perhaps game location. I can't see how it could be done. Perfect games in Carribean or Japanese or whatever leagues would seem reasonable, but how to collect the data?? ww 09:30, 31 January 2006 (UTC)
On the same note, what about minor league Perfect Games? I believe Bronson Arroyo pitched a perfect game for the PawSox of the International League. Kntrabssi 06:16, 21 March 2006 (UTC)
He did, and so did Tomokazu Ohka. I agree that minor league perfect games (The International League has had four) should be included, since the article is Perfect_game, and doesn't specify Major Leagues only. Counterfit
I think perfect games out of MLB is pushing it a little bit. If you were talking about 50-point scorers in the NBA, you wouldn't go around and count up 50-points scorers from high school, elementry school, etc. Minor league and overseas professional leagues could have their own page of perfect games, but I don't know how to verify any of it. Little league is stretching it way too far. What's next? We are going to include perfect games pitched on video games?? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 96.235.20.63 (talk) 21:04, 6 August 2008 (UTC)
MLB is the highest level and theoretically the most difficult to achieve any given record. Baseball without qualification might be assumed to be MLB, but it would be better to state it and make it clear. At the very least, you might have trouble finding a comprehensive list of minor leaguers who've thrown perfect games, as the records are rather much harder to find. MLB is well-documented clear back to 1876. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 23:47, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

Substantial editing

Just a baseball fan here. I hadn't felt like I spend enough time on Wikipedia to make an account (although I am going to) but my casual browsing brought me to the perfect game page and I saw several inaccuracies on the almost-perfect list and took the liberty of researching and updating them. I don't want to mess up the page by incorrectly adding a links heading or any such thing I don't trust myself to do for fear of ruining something, but for the sake of completeness, I put it to one of you good users to add, as appropriate, the following links from where I found most of this information:


Baseball Fever forum thread: http://www.baseball-fever.com/showthread.php?threadid=9017 Some of the date information on this page is incorrect; however, the player-vs-player information is in order.

Events of 7.4.1908 Wiltse: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/07041908.htm

There was no box score, or even a line score, kept for this game as far as I know. Interestingly it was the front end of a doubleheader and I recall reading somewhere that Wiltse pitched both games, although I do not know if this is true.

Events of 8.5.1932: Bridges http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/08051932.htm

No box score was found.

Events of 6.27.1958: Pierce http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/06271958.htm

Nor was there a box score for this one.

9.2.1972 Pappas: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B09020CHN1972.htm

4.15.1983 Wilcox: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B04150CHA1983.htm

5.2.1988 Robinson: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B05020CIN1988.htm

8.4.1989 Stieb: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B08040TOR1989.htm

4.20.1990 Holman: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B04200OAK1990.htm

Notes about Stieb and Holman: Originally the page stated that Stieb had lost a perfect game as one of two consecutive no-hit bids broken up in the ninth innings of two games in 1988. This is somewhat true: Neither one was perfect in the ninth (there were walks and hit batters before the ninth) but he did indeed lose two no-no's. Holman's, also stated to be in 1988, was in 1990.

5.30.1997 Mussina: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B05300BAL1997.htm

5.6.1998 Wood: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B05060CHN1998.htm

No play-by-play in any box score I found, although surely there is one somewhere. The page stated Wood having thrown a would-be perfect game, save for a third-inning infield single. In a somewhat unsurprising turn, Wood hit Craig Biggio - two players with notoriety for HBPs - therefore making that claim false, although it would have been a no-hitter.

9.2.2001 Mussina: http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B09020BOS2001.htm

If I missed and/or messed up anything, I apologise, and I'll check back tomorrow for any comments - hopefully by then I'll have got around to making myself a username.

anon,
No apologies needed. You've done good work, just exactly in the spirit of WP. Keep it up! WP relies on exactly such folks; most of my work has been in other fields (crypto and such), but I'm a fan, just not so well informed as you. I'm glad you've improved the work I did here. Thank you. ww 16:09, 18 February 2006 (UTC)

I see a user named Misfit Toys chose to undo some of my edits and reinsert extraneous material that does not belong in an article on perfect games. This is unfortunate. The listing for Wood's game does not belong in this article, becuse it was not particularly close to a perfect game: Wood gave up a base hit AND hit a batter. The listing for Mussina's first game does not belong because it was not particularly close either: it was lost with one out in the 9th, not two. If the standard for near-perfect games is 25 batters retired and not 26, this article would be a lot longer. Thus I have deleted those games again, because they have no place in an article on perfect games. Please understand that I am not making these corrections out of spite or stubbornness but because I think the article is most clear and most concise if the "near perfect" listing is limited to games that made it to the 27th batter, and that to include more is to invite clutter with several more games that went only 24 or 25 batters, or only had one baserunner at some other point in the game. The near-perfectos of Young, Joss and Koufax don't really belong in this article either, but I included them because all three of those pitchers did indeed have a perfect game at another time. Also, Misfit Toys incorrectly changed a factual correction I made to the article: Ron Robinson was listed as losing his perfect game to the 26th batter, when it was actually the 27th. I have again changed that back. The retrosheet play-by-play, which I'm including the URL for below, clearly indcates that there were two out in the 9th inning and not one when Johnson singled to ruin the perfect game:

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B05020CIN1988.htm

Math?

I'm wondering how the line that states that there is roughly a perfect game every four years is valid.

According to my math, with 17 Perfect games to date, divided by 103 years of MLB equals (approx) .1650 Perfect games per year. Then, by dividing the number 1 by my answer equals 6. From this data, I would assume that a Perfect Game every six seasons is a more accurate answer when compared to one every 4 years. Darwin's Bulldog 23:51, 24 April 2006 (UTC)

Actually, there have been 131 years of MLB, counting this one; the National League began play in 1876. 131/17=7.7, so I guess the answer is that there's a perfect game every eight years on the average...I will change the article accordingly.
  • Cool, because a perfect game every four years just didn't sound right to me. I was basing my math from the 1901 season (even then, I made a small error: should've been 105 years instead of 103). Regardless, using 131 years is probably the best anyways! Darwin's Bulldog 02:21, 26 April 2006 (UTC)

Capricious move

This page was moved from perfect game to perfect game (baseball) for no apparent good reason. This move breaks the longstanding guidelines on naming articles.

Use the most common name of a person or thing that does not conflict with the names of other people or things.

There is no other article disambiguated at perfect game; it is only a redirect. The only articles which point there are baseball-related articles. The only other sport I know of with perfect games is bowling, but there is no perfect game (bowling) article -- and if there were, the baseball article would still be considered the most common usage. There is no conflict with any other name, nor a need for disambiguation. The only possible justification might be a Wikiproject with the intent of marking all baseball-related terms with the disambiguator (baseball) (which would be an astonishingly bad idea). --Dhartung | Talk 05:29, 5 May 2006 (UTC)

I wasn't the one that moved it but I can see why they did:

There are several other sports/games with the concept of a perfect game, e.g. softball and ten pin bowling. Therefore the current article name does "conflict with the names of other people or things."

For an example of this, see the article on a perfect game in ten pin bowling 300-point game (which the article states is "more commonly known as a Perfect Game"). If someone was looking for an article for a perfect game in bowling they would find the baseball perfect game article without any hint that the bowling article exists.

Further, the Wikipedia:Naming conventions (precision) guideline seems to be in favour of the move:

"Be Precise (when necessary)
Convention: Please, do not title articles ambiguously as though that title had no other meanings! ... If a word or phrase is ambiguous, and an article concerns only one of the meanings of that word or phrase, it should usually be titled with something more precise than just that word or phrase (unless it is unlikely that the related usages deserve their own article). For example, use Apollo program, Nirvana (band), smoking pipe; rather than simply Apollo, Nirvana, Pipe."

The absolute least we should do is change the name of this article to 'Perfect game (baseball)', and redirect 'Perfect game' to 'Perfect game (baseball)'. Then put a disambiguation link to a perfect game in ten pin bowling at the top of the page.

In summary, this article title is ambiguous and should therefore be moved to 'Perfect game (baseball)'. Joaq99 14:43, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

I may have been harsh some months ago, but the problem remains -- non-baseball uses are much less common. We still do not have an article on perfect game (bowling). I tend to dislike pre-emptive disambiguation, and when there is a clear primary topic (and I argue this is such a case), that topic should be at the name and other topics can be reached through a disambiguation hatnote (if just one more) or a disambiguation page. I have absolutely no objection to the creation of perfect game (bowling) or perfect game (disambiguation).
When there is a well known primary meaning for a term or phrase (indicated by a majority of links in existing articles and consensus of the editors of those articles that it will be significantly more commonly searched for and read than other meanings), then that topic may be used for the title of the main article, with a disambiguation link at the top. Where there is no such clearly dominant usage there is no primary topic page.
Even Merriam-Webster offers only the one definition.--Dhartung | Talk 23:08, 27 October 2006 (UTC)
I've created those pages and appropriate hatnotes. Given that many more Wikipedia baseball articles link to perfect game than bowling articles that link to 300-point game, this shouldn't be a major problem. --Dhartung | Talk 23:27, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

Good stuff. This seems like a reasonable compromise Joaq99 09:07, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

Non-baserunner errors

I changed the entry to reflect that an error that doesn't result in a baserunner still invalidates a perfect game.

Who changed it back and why? The information oyu have there is wrong. You could ask major league baseball directly and they would tell you it is wrong. An error, no matter what results from it, obviates a perfect game.

I did, because I don't think you're right. A perfect game is a game where a pitcher throws a nine-inning complete game without allowing any baserunners--27 up, 27 down. That's it. Whether or not a fielder drops a foul pop-up is not relevant. And now that I look it seems that MLB's definition agrees: "An official perfect game occurs when a pitcher (or pitchers) retires each batter on the opposing team during the entire course of a game, which consists of at least nine innings. In a perfect game, no batter reaches any base during the course of the game." It says nothing about a team having to play an error-free ballgame.
I agree, since it's not possible reach base on a foul ball, a dropped fly foul ball would simply be a strike (unless the batter has two strikes already).
A dropped foul ball can still be an error if the official scorer deems the ball catchable. While a batter cannot reach base on a dropped foul ball, it does give him another chance at reaching base. An error on a dropped foul ball does not count against a perfect game. PeteLazy 05:40, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Notes to references?

What was the motive in placing all the trivia notes in the 'references' section? A trivia fact, such as the fact that Wells and Larsen went to the same high school, is not the same as a 'reference', which would be an external authority such as a book or magazine that deals with the topic. I'll have to change it all back.

OK, I've changed it back. I think the article looks much better this way. Better to have the trivia and notes in its own section rather than shoehorned in the References section. I also am not sure if the section on Japanese baseball belongs. Logically, if you're going to include Japanese league perfect games, then you should list perfect games from Korean baseball leagues, Mexican leagues, Cuban leagues, and so on and so forth. I think a better thing, if the info on Japanese perfect games is deemed useful, would be to have a separate article or perhaps enter the info into another article on Japanese baseball. However, since I've already heavily edited this article, I'll leave that alone for others to edit.

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Vidor (talkcontribs) .

I like your way much better. Sorry for the misunderstanding -- I found a section under the table somewhat bothersome. Your way was much better. Sorry for any misunderstanding. — Ian Manka Talk to me! 10:45, 23 May 2006 (UTC)
No problem. Gave me something to do tonight. What do people think about relocating the section on Japanese perfect games?-User:Vidor
What I'd like to do is to convert the Japanese table to include as much information (and notes too, like does the definition differ in Japan?) as the American list. And I'd like to include data from other leagues (comparable in lineup stability to MLB) from Cuba, etc. The reason for considering stability is that a pitcher who sees mostly the same batters all year is a different pitcher than one who hasn't. And the same is true for batters in the other direction. So the American minor leagues (including collegiate summer leagues; a no hitter was !lost! a day or two ago in upstate New York) don't qualify. The rosters are changing rapidly as players are clalled up and sent down, ... These are, in the US anyway, more correctly instructional leagues. Other than that, the more the better as I see it. ww 21:11, 16 July 2006 (UTC)
I don't think we should clutter up the article with lists from lots of different leagues. There are obviously players from leagues in Japan, Cuba, Korea, etc, that are of MLB caliber and have had successful careers in MLB, but I don't think anybody would dispute that the overall level of play in MLB is higher than in other leagues. But even if one chooses not to make that distinction, the article would be too cluttered. It's supposed to be a list of MLB perfect games, not every perfect game thrown in every international league ever. I would make a page for Japanese baseball perfect games and attach it to the existing entry on Japanese baseball. Ditto perfect games from other leagues, if anybody wants to make such a list. Link them all to this page, but don't let this page get too long and unwieldy. Vidor 15:51, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Edited "other notable near-perfect games"

I took several entries out of the section for other notable near-perfect games. The note on the minor-league game does not belong in an article on MLB perfect games. That one was the one that drew my attention, but, upon further consideration, I didn't think there was any justification for the one-hitters by Lackey, Lowe and the others. Re: Lackey and Lowe--one could, if one chose, compile a long list of pitchers who threw one-hitters, pitchers who faced the minimum, or pitchers who allowed the leadoff man on and retired the next 27 in a row. I don't see any reason to note a couple of those games and not note the rest. Similarly, I took out the near-perfect games by Young, Joss, Koufax and Ward. While they are somewhat more relevant--no pitcher has ever thrown two perfect games, and it's interesting to note how close those pitchers came to doing so--those games were not perfect, and, like the Lackey and Lowe games, I thought that there was no justification to include those games and not include other one-hitters.

I left three. The spring training game was an MLB perfect game, even though it was only an exhibtion, so its inclusion seemed appropriate. The other two are the games of Hoyt and Wise, who were both perfect for MORE than nine innings, so it makes sense to note their efforts. Vidor 15:51, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

If I recall correctly, the games you delelted were not the one-hitter type with baserunners on in every inning. They were, in fact, one hit, or one walk, or whatever, away from perfection. Just like, in fact, the more dramatic ones in which perfection was lost with the last batter. Or in Ruth's case, with the first batter... I think they should be retained, if only as an illustration of the tantalizing quality of these. By the criterion in your prior comment here, the exhibition game should be deleted along with all but MLB games.
Not sure I agree with that, as the standard of play elsewhere is very high, if not perhaps usually as high as in MLB. Comment? ww 16:27, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
What I was getting at, is that there have been lots of one-hitters, and several no-hitters where the pitcher allowed only one baserunner. Terry Mulholland had a no-hitter in 1990 where he only allowed one baserunner, on an error by the third baseman. And that guy was erased on a double play, so Mulholland only faced the minimum 27 batters. It wasn't listed in the article. Why wouldn't we list that game, if we mention the games by Lackey and Lowe, Young's no-hitter with the walk, etc, etc.? I don't see justification for listing only some of those games and not all of them, which is why I took them out. And if we list every game where a starting pitcher allowed only one baserunner, this article could get very, very long. The "27th batter" section is better because those pitchers got all the way to the end, and only had one guy left to face.
Regarding the other leagues, all I'm saying is that they shouldn't be in this article. They should have their own articles, preferably attached to articles about that particular league. Much as with the problem of 'one baserunner' games, if we start listing the Cuban league and the Korean league and Mexican League perfect games and such, the article could get very unwieldy. Vidor 19:40, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
I would agree with Vidor, what would be good near-perfect MLB games are MLB exhibition games (though the Blue Jays team was on the losing end of that one) and games that were perfect for more than nine innings in a row, but were not actually perfect because of runners on base in either early or late innings. --Deathphoenix ʕ 20:56, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

19th Century Comparison

"It should be noted that perfect games were no easier to achieve in 19th century baseball than they are today. There were only two perfect games recorded during twenty-five seasons of 19th century baseball, as opposed to seven between 1984 and 2004."

This comparison is fraught with difficulty due to far fewer games played in 19th C etc. etc. E.g. there were 9 teams in 1871 and 8 teams in 1900 (although the number jumped above and below those numbers in between those yrs.) So I'll cut that. Joaq99 10:29, 22 October 2006 (UTC)

Perfect Game Pitcher Meetings

Game 3 of the 2006 ALS had Kenny Rogers start against Randy Johnson, probably the only time perfect game pitchers have met in the post season. This got me wondering, how often has this happened before during the regular season? Does anyone have stats on this? Allegrorondo 13:57, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

Men on the moon

There are 17 perfect games listed, including two in the 19th century which apparently aren't always counted. Twelve men have walked on the moon (Armstrong, Aldrin, Conrad, Bean, Shepard, Mitchell, Scott, Irwin, Young, Duke, Cernan, Schmidt).

Whether or not you include the games from the 1800s, 12 is less, not greater, than either 15 or 17.

I believe it reads orbited the moon, not walked on it.


Wouldn't it be more correct to take only those perfect games into consideration that were pitched after the first man walked on the moon?--84.173.189.231 (talk) 23:50, 5 April 2009 (UTC)

(A) Orbited, not walked. (B) Unclear what the logic behind your suggestion is. (C) The end result would be precisely the same: fewer men have pitched major league perfect games than have orbited the moon.—DCGeist (talk) 03:00, 6 April 2009 (UTC)

Title?

Shouldn't this be "Perfect game (Baseball)"? Applejuicefool 17:57, 31 October 2006 (UTC)

Please see discussion in Talk:Perfect game#Capricious move thread above.—DCGeist 18:20, 31 October 2006 (UTC)
Yes Applejuicefool, if we were strictly adhering to then guidelines the article name probably should change (see my comments at Talk:Perfect game#Capricious move). But since:
  • they are only guidelines
  • it's fairly common practice on Wikipedia not to follow them in this regard
  • it's not a particularly important issue
  • the disambiguation page means people can find the article they're looking for
I reckon it's ok as it is.
Having said that, we may have to convince those voting on its featured status in the future that this approach is the correct one. Joaq99 09:15, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

Reversion of 'tweaks' edit

These multiple edits were in several cases wrong (removing wikitext comment, for instance), in many cases reinstitued partial sentences, or in still others, misused subjunctive tense in the 'foreboding' mode. Changes of xxx -- yyy to xxx-yyy were reverted as well. We can do better if any of these things actually needed changes. ww 10:38, 9 March 2007 (UTC)

Sorry, ww, but there are many more errors and infelicities in the version you reverted to. For instance:
  • Major League Baseball's so-called modern era did not begin "around" 1900; it is officially regarded as beginning in 1900.
  • This is a wildly improper dash style: -— (space, hyphen, em-dash, space); it appears repeatedly in the version you prefer. The proper em-dash style that appeared throughout for months and which I've restored is simply an unspaced em-dash approach. Please familiarize yourself with WP:DASH#Dash_guidelines_for_Wikipedia_editors. You'll note that "Tight (unspaced) em dashes" is the first acceptable style listed.
  • The hidden note pointing out the incorrectness of the statement "The combined hit total for both teams -— 1 -— is the major league record for the fewest in a game" is well taken. The sentence in the version I've reverted to is both correct and has proper dash style: "The combined hit total for both teams—1—is the major league record for the fewest in a perfect game."
  • The phrase "have a perfect thrown against them" is clearly misstated. The team either had a "perfect game" or a "perfecto" thrown against them, not a "perfect."
And so forth... There are many small points of grammar and style we might debate, but it's clear that your preferred version is riddled with more errors than the one to which I've reverted.—DCGeist 07:24, 10 March 2007 (UTC)
I plead guilty to typos, as in leaving out game after perfect in your last point. But, the xxx-yyy dash style is too easily confused with a hyphenated word, don't know what the official WP is. And most of that edit was English anyway, correcting partial sentences and such. The wikitext was superfluous as there was included in it an answer to the question it was posing of editors. You're right we adisagree on stylistic points. I'll come back and see if I can satisfy your objections while still addressing mine... ww 20:33, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

called by

What does "called by" mean? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 211.225.34.175 (talk) 06:37, 1 April 2007 (UTC).

It is common baseball lingo to say a catcher "calls" a game, because the catcher usually is telling the pitcher which pitches to throw. Vidor 03:25, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
It may be common lingo, but I am an American baseball fan (not extreme, but I follow my favorite team), and I did not know this. I actually thought it probably referred to the main umpire. So how is some-one not especially familiar with baseball supposed to understand this? The term is not linked. This is simply poor style.
It could also be used in reference to a radio or TV broadcaster. And it's not a no-hitter if it's "called" due to rain or darkness, or if the batter "called" his shot and homered. Probably best to avoid "called" altogether, due to its ambiguity. Wahkeenah 23:30, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
"Called" is not ambiguous at all. I repeat: it's common baseball lingo to say a catcher "calls" a game. An individual reader not knowing the meaning of "called" does not mean it should be taken out of the article. Vidor 11:16, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Well, it's sufficiently ambiguous that it was used in entirely different way in the article--to introduce each perfect game's home plate umpire (who, of course, "calls" balls and strikes). That's why it's been removed.—DCGeist 16:50, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
So we rewrite articles because certain readers are ignorant of baseball vocabulary? Vidor 20:50, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
  • (A) Yes, that's exactly the sort of thing we do.
  • (B) It's not clear what your position is. You've been arguing that "called by" unambiguously means "caught by." I've explained that it was used--for some time before I first encountered the article about six months ago--to mean "umpired by," the phrase with which I've replaced it. What would you like done now?—DCGeist 05:08, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

Unassisted triple play comparison

I'm against adding it: (a) it's a delightful feat, but nowhere near as significant as a perfect game; (b) the mention of it undermines the point of the paragraph a bit, which is, of course, the exceptional difficulty and rarity of the perfect game, one of the greatest achievements possible in baseball.—DCGeist 22:15, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

Just realized: hitting four home runs in a game is also rarer than a pitching a perfect game, and more significant than an unassisted triple play--if, again, not quite as delightful. Cutting comparison per this thread.—DCGeist 22:17, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
You're probably right about 4 homers in one game. Maybe there could be a separate page on "rare feats" in sports. Rare feats are not the same as records, necessarily. Hitting 4 homers in a game is a record. The few times it has been done is not a "record" as such, it's a "rare event" or "special achievement". Wahkeenah 23:29, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
I think that's a good idea. Summarized listings of perfect games, unassisted triple plays, and other similarly rare feats could all appear there.—DCGeist 23:42, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
As long someone doesn't yelp that it's "original research" or basically "inventing" information. I wouldn't think that's too likely, given the extremities of verifiability that exist for baseball records. What title? I kind of like "Special achievements". It understates the risk of POV-hype. However, it also risks attracting everyone's pet "achievement", such as the best mustache or the most times caught spitting on camera. Wahkeenah 01:26, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

Edits

User DCGeist appears to be unhappy with my edits. There is, of course, no requirement that one must "comment, discuss, or defend" edits before one makes them. But I will do so here as I had planned. The article as I found it was getting bloated, some 41kb long. It is now only 36kb long, and I feel it is better for the change. As for the edits I did make, in no particular order:

  • Structure of article makes length perfectly manageable. Readers can choose to read clearly labeled lower sections or not.DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
The no-hit, no-walk, no-hit batsman game was poorly documented, with the article itself noting that the online discussion forums and such that it was drawn from were not authoritative. I would suggest this section be kept out of the article unless and until we can find an authoritative source listing all im-perfect games spoiled only by errors. Even if we can find such a source, we should consider why that information merits an entire section, if it couldn't be better stated by a single line saying "X amount of perfect games were ruined by no-hitters", and whether or not the article before gave too little space to actual perfect games as opposed to im-perfect ones.
  • No, you misread. There's no authoritative sourcing for the relevant 19th-century games. All of the games described in the article are very well sourced. It's just a matter of updating the article to include the appropriate cites for them.DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Material on the worthiness of the 19th century games is POV. MLB has a standard for perfect games and the games of Ward and Richmond meet it.
  • No, discussing a debate is not POV. The article describes the standard; states that the games of Ward and Richmond meet it; and describes different opinions without passing any POV judgment itself.DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Much of the trivia that I deleted was immaterial or poorly documented. The note on Richmnod staying up all night is uncertain. Don Larsen's perfect game should not have that much description about it, much more than the others; that can all go on the Don Larsen page or somebody can make a separate article about Don Larsen's game (there is already an article about Sandy Koufax's game).
  • "Immaterial." Well, I guess POV is bad except when it's your POV. Larsen section does seem a bit too large relative to others. Editor Wahkeenah, however, is the major contributor to that, so his opinion should be registered.DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
The caption about Pedro Martinez was redundant with the info in the text below.
  • As is true of many captions accompanying many sorts of texts.DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
The info about the book "Balldom"--honestly, who cares?
  • Editor Wahkeenah, who added it, for one. Me, for another. Quite probably all sorts of readers none of us know.DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

I also merged the section on "questions of definition" and "unofficial perfect games" as those two sections were largely redundant. Vidor 21:54, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

You state, "There is, of course, no requirement that one must 'comment, discuss, or defend' edits before one makes them." Indeed, there's no such requirement. But then there's no requirement that any editorial efforts be taken very seriously, either. One of the ways an editor earns credibility and respect for his or her contributions is by following certain widely accepted procedures. Yes, an editor is free to ignore them, just like other editors are free to ignore his wishes for the article's size, shape, and sensibility when he does.—DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

It should now be noted that user DCGeist, who has twice reverted all my edits and scolded me about not discussing them, is himself not discussing the article here. Vidor 22:00, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Now, these things do take a little time. There ya go.—DCGeist 22:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Structure of article makes length perfectly manageable. Structure of article looks bloated and overstuffed to me. Your version is 11kb longer than mine. No, you misread. I misread nothing. There is no authoritative source listing all the error-spoiled games. There is also no clear reason as to why that section even exists. Should we have another section for all the games that were spoiled only by walks? All the games spoiled only by one hit? All the games spoiled only by a hit batsman? No, discussing a debate is not POV. Discussing a debate? Should we discuss the discussion of the debate?
I feel confident that the article is better for all the other trivia I deleted. The note about "Balldom" is wholly irrelevant. The sub-topic was the origin of the term. The article lists the first book to use the term. That's good. The article then goes on to ramble pointlessly about one of the sources of that old book, an even older book that does not use the phrase "perfect game" and thus is irrelevant to the topic. That's bad.
You said of the Martinez caption that lots of other photos have redundant captions. That does not make those captions, or this caption, any less irrelevant or unnecessary.
I do not know whom you want to consult before allowing edits on this article. What I do know is that in the last six weeks the only two people who have made comments on this comment page are you and I. The only users who have commented on this discussion page in the last two months are you, me and Wahkeenah. The only users to have commented on the discussion page at any time in the year 2007 are you, me, Wahkeenah, and ww. So to build up the discussion and consensus that you demand should take us into 2009, probably. Vidor 22:33, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

No communication from any other users. Vidor 03:24, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Four days after the initial demand for "consensus", and no further communication on this page. Vidor 18:42, 17 June 2007 (UTC)

Seven days since the demand for "consensus". Vidor 12:56, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Ten days since the demand for "consensus". I'm going on vacation soon and will be gone for a week or so. If I get back and see that neither DCGeist or any other users have commented on the edits I made, I'll go ahead and make them again. Vidor 07:13, 23 June 2007 (UTC)

Sixteen days since user DCGeist reverted all of my edits and demanded "consensus". No one has come to discuss the issues with me in the meantime. Vidor 23:24, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Perfect games lost to the 27th batter

I removed Curt Schilling from the list because he lost a no-hitter, not a perfect game. Dan Johnson reached base in the bottom of the 5th inning on a fielding error by shortstop Julio Lugo. Also, Shannon Stewart was the 28th batter of the game, not the 27th. PeteLazy 05:14, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Once a pitcher has retired the first 26, his chance at a perfect game would seem to boil down to the On Base Average of the 27th man. I see that we have 15 perfect games (after 1900) and nine 26-and-spoiled games. That's 62.5% success and (of course) 37.5% failure. This would suggest that the aggregate 27th man has an OBA of about .375, which is somewhat reasonable. It's the last slot in the lineup, and hence is almost always going to be a pinch hitter.

Had it worked out the other way (say more spoiled than bagged), that would have been surprising.WHPratt (talk) 14:17, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Rules

I'm not too satisfied with the discussion of the rules affecting pre-1900 (or technically, 1903) no-hitters, as it's kind of disjointed. I think there needs to be a separate section that summarizes all the rules and equipment changes that affected the game prior to 1900 and which are possibly connected with the ability to pitch a no-hitter. For example, there was significant mistake in the pitcher's box discussion. Also, it would be interesting if someone could find play-by-plays for the 1880 games, as it would address the allegations that there is "wide debate" (?) about those games. Baseball Bugs 14:47, 1 July 2007 (UTC)

The following summary of the rules most likely to potentially affect a no-hitter, and especially a perfect game, is taken from various editions of the MacMillan Baseball Encyclopedia as well as the book Glory Fades Away, which was about the 19th Cenbtury World Series...

1876: 9 balls for a walk.
1880: 8 balls for a walk.
1881: Front of pitcher's box 50 feet instead of 45.
1882: 7 balls for a walk.
1883: Foul ball caught on first bounce is no longer an out.
1884: Pitcher allowed shoulder-high delivery. 6 balls for a walk.
1886: Pitcher's box 4 x 7 instead of 6 x 6 feet. 7 balls for a walk.
1887: Batter no longer allowed to call for high or low pitch. Pitcher's box 4 x 5 1/2 feet, and pitcher must toe the back line (55 1/2 feet from home plate) during delivery. Batter hit by pitch goes to first base. 5 balls for a walk. Base on balls counted as a hit (only this year). Fourth strike allowed, if initial third strike is "called" (this year only).
1889: 4 balls for a walk. Batter allowed to overrun first base on a base hit.
1890: 1 free substitution allowed per game, in addition to injury or permission of opposing team.
1891: Substitutions allowed for any reason, but only at end of inning.
1892: Substitutions allowed anytime.
1893: Back of pitcher's box moved back 5 feet, to 60 1/2 feet, replaced by rubber, other "box" lines erased.
1894: Foul bunt is a strike.
1895: Foul tip is a strike. Infield fly rule introduced.
1900: Home plate changed to 5-sided instead of square.
1901: Foul ball with less than 2 strikes is a strike (NL) - Adopted in AL in 1903.
1903: Height of pitcher's mound limited to 15 inches.
1909: Bunt on third strike is a strikeout.

Baseball Bugs 18:07, 1 July 2007 (UTC)

Should indicate that fielders didn't use gloves. Personally, I think the fact that there were only two perfectos in twenty years of old-timey ball to be conclusive proof that it wasn't easier. Vidor 04:22, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
Before 1887 you had the "fair-foul" hit, which could have led to some cheap singles.WHPratt (talk) 19:08, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

No-hit, no-walk, no-hit batsman games

User DCGeist reverted all my edits some time ago and gave me a tongue lashing about achieving "consensus", despite the fact that this discussion page is lightly trafficked and it would probably take years to achieve consensus. After two weeks passed and DCGeist did not return to the talk page, I have made some of those edits again, although not in the same form (I left in some of the material about "Balldom" and some of the material in the Pedro Martinez caption, and Baseball Bugs cut and paste the Larsen verbiage into the 1956 World Series page. However, lest DCGeist revert me again, I would like to first state here my opinion on the no-hit no-walk no-hit batsman section.

First, the opening paragraph with the business about rules changes and the 19th century games. I deleted that again and am willing to fight hard to keep it out. Here are my reasons: the talk about rules changes was redundant with the 'questions of definition' section above. If we want we can make a longer section about changes in the rules and how they reflect on the achievements of Richmond and Ward (and the failure of any other pitcher in that era to throw a perfecto), but we do not need TWO DIFFERENT PARAGRAPHS on the same sub-topic. I also deleted the bit about the 19th century games because there is no source. The only 'reference' we had was to some guy on a message board, which is no reference at all. I do not know how we will go about compiling that data, since not even Retrosheet has play-by-play for regular season games from more than 40-odd years ago, but we should not have that section in until someone can source it.

Second, the longer section on games after 1893. User DCGeist claimed that all those games were sourced. I do not know what the sources are, but they weren't linked to in the article. Secondly, and I will wait for further opinion on this, there is no justification to list those games, and here's the reason why: a perfect game is a team achievement. It is commonly thought of as an individual achievement by the pitcher but it is not. Every fielder must make every play correctly and get all the putouts. Team game, team achievement. From the standpoint of a perfect game, it matters not whether the game was spoiled by a hit or spoiled by an error. It was spoiled either way. There is no justification for listing those games and not listing every would-be-perfect game that was spoiled by a base hit, or by a walk, or by a hit batsman, or by catcher's interference. I would very much like to delete that section but I will wait for another opinion lest DCGeist give another lecture. Vidor 04:48, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Followup comments...

  • The notion that it would have been "easier" to pitch a perfect game before 1900 is entirely a matter of opinion, and is not supported by any particular facts. The fact that two of them occurred within 5 days might have influenced the rulemakers to move the pitcher's box back by 5 feet, the very next year, but it wouldn't have been just that by itself. As I recall from reading newspaper microfilm of that era, the express purpose was "to increase the batting" in general. I doubt these two games alone would have forced the issue, probably an overall perception that pitching was dominating too much. And you make the excellent point that with poorer equipment, it would have been tougher on fielders. As you say, a perfect game is a team effort, unless the pitcher strikes out all 27, which hasn't happened yet.
  • I also dispute the notion that the 19th Century perfect games are controversial, since it's unsourced. I think it's just that same guy's opinion, maybe someone who hasn't studied the issue that closely. I could also argue that it was hard to throw a no-hitter in Cy Young's time, because they didn't have "trap" gloves; but it was also easier because the ball was darker and mushier, and the ball wasn't so lively. No, it doesn't work to try to compare eras with each other. A perfect game is a perfect game, no matter what the era. (That's my unsourced opinion.)
  • Thus it's appropriate to have deleted the section that admits there is "no authoritative source" for a comprehensive list of perfect games ruined by a fielding miscue. The list is, by definition, anecdotal and thus could be misleading. To do it right, every no-hitter should be listed along with whatever factors (errors, walks, HBP, etc.) kept it from being a perfect game. I would say the same argument could be made against the "Perfect games lost to the 27th batter" entry, although that might be a "special case". Anyway, that kind of research could be done thoroughly and completely in the no-hitter article, if someone wants to take the time, better than in this one. Also, the fact that it took 8 balls or whatever to walk a batter is also a misleading stat. Someone would need to see what the walk-percentage looked like during those years. One author suggested that the number of balls for a walk kept getting reduced because they were so rare... due to the pitcher being so much closer to the plate. And as I was looking at the rules and realized that the modern foul-ball rule wasn't totally in effect until 1909, suddenly the 1904 and 1908 perfect games become questionable. No, it's better to just leave it alone.
  • I'm not sure what you're getting at, specifically, about the sourcing for the 20th century games.
  • I agree with DCGeist adding back the more detailed explanation about Lanigan, Sanborn, Balldom, etc. for the sake of clarity... especially since I'm the one that wrote it originally. :)

Baseball Bugs 12:18, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

And as far as whether it was easier or harder to throw a perfect game, maybe the asterisk belongs on the modern era. 17 perfect games in all, broken down by decades:

1870s: none
1880s: 2 - After which the pitching distance was moved back 5 feet.
1890s: none - After the pitching distance was moved back another 5 feet.
1900s: 2 - After which the foul ball rule was changed.
1910s: none
1920s: 1 - The "lively ball" era was under way.
1930s: none
1940s: none
1950s: 1
1960s: 3 - At which point they lowered the pitching mound - to increase the batting - thus, you can argue that 1968-1969 is another dividing line. No, leave it alone.
1970s: none
1980s: 3
1990s: 4 - Who says only the batters were taking steroids?
2000s: 1 - so far.

The problem for those who make the claim about the 1880s is the false argument that the only major change made after 1893 was the DH. Yet, as the writeup says (or said) of the 8 perfect games since 1973, 5 are in the AL which has the DH. And the glaring overlook of the dominance of pitching in the late 60s and the resultant lowering of the pitching mound casts further doubt on comparing the eras. In reality, there has been a frequent juggling of the rules to try to achieve balance between offense and defense. There are too many dividing lines to be drawn. So in the context of the perfect game, it's safest not to draw any lines. A perfect game is a rare and extraordinary achievement, no matter what the era.

Baseball Bugs 12:43, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

To respond to some of those items--a breakdown by decade would have to account for the number of games played, which was quite a bit less. But as I said above, the fact that only two such games were pitched seems to me conclusive proof that it was not easier.
As for the 20th century no-walk-hit-hbp games, my point in brief was that I don't see justification for listing those games and not listing every game that was spoiled by a hit and every game that was spoiled by a walk. Vidor 03:32, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

Larsen

I had moved the Larsen minutia to the 1956 Series page, partly on recommendations and partly on the lack of much of anything about it on that page. It's worth pointing out that the Cohen-Neft-Johnson-Deutsch book has a pitch-by-pitch summary of all 97 pitches thrown by Larsen. Copying that info into the article would be interesting, but also probably a copyright violation due to excessive size of the citation. There might still be some Larsen stuff on this page. Instead of the myriad of trivia notes, it seems like they should be separated to go with the individual game summaries, except where the discussion is about two or more games in the same breath. Someone who is better at dealing with formatting could do that. A good guide would be the format of the various World Series writeups, where the games are separated and there is room for game descriptions after each one. Baseball Bugs 12:26, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Balldom

User DCGeist once again reverted my edit, and once again failed to comment on this talk page about why a section on the origin of the word "perfect game" should spend so much time discussing a book that does not use the term "perfect game" and is of no relevance. It has now been nineteen days since DCGeist's demand for "consensus" and his lecture to me on proper Wikipedia etiquette. Does proper etiquette include reverting without discussion? Is that "consensus"? Vidor 03:44, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

The reason I (not DCGeist) added the perhaps overly-explanatory reference was that Lanigan cited Balldom as a source for his own work. I wanted to make it clear that while Balldom listed the games, it did not call them "perfect games". This had more to do with the origin of the term than anything. Baseball Bugs 12:49, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
Got my copy of the reprint of Lanigan's book today. If anyone wants to order this gem, here's the link: [2] Baseball Bugs 23:06, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Multi-pitcher perfect game?

During a discussion elsewhere a question came up: Is it possible to have a perfect game with two or more pitchers? The current wording in the article seems to say no ("...as a game in which a pitcher pitches a complete game victory..."), but the MLB official info seems to say yes ("...when a pitcher (or pitchers) retires each batter..."). — Ming Hua 18:47, 13 August 2007 (UTC)

Of course. A perfect game is just a special case of a no-hitter. There have been as many as 4 pitchers combining to pitch a no-hitter. Similarly, the stat would be "combined to pitch a perfect game". The definition is all batters retired in order, none reaching base safely. It doesn't matter if it's against 1 pitcher or 10 pitchers. It just happens that that circumstance has not arisen yet, at least not at the major league level. If a pitcher is throwing perfect game, there's no particular reason to take him out, unless he either gets injured, which could happen, or if he tells the manager he has "nothing left", which would be unusual. Baseball Bugs 19:26, 13 August 2007 (UTC)
Yes, that's my understanding of the official info as well. I see that's you've already edited the article. Thanks. —Ming Hua 16:24, 14 August 2007 (UTC)
Until someone challenges it. Not that it's a perfect game, not a perfect pitcher. It just happens that every major league perfect game so far has been a single pitcher. It occurs to me that a stickler for protocol might have lifted David Wells when he reached his 100th pitch. But it was against a weak-hitting Twins team, so that wasn't going to happen. I do recall a time when a pitcher throwing a no-hitter was lifted for a pinch-hitter due to the score being 0-0. That was done by a San Diego manager years ago, I forget who now. Needless to say, he was raked over the coals for it by the public and the press... and the no-hitter eventually was lost. "The press" reminded me who it was... Preston Gomez. In fact, he did it twice, but the team was losing, not tied, so it made more sense. Pitching a no-hitter and losing is not much of an achievement anyway. It shows what poor teams Gomez was stuck with. By definition, a pitcher in the midst of a perfect game cannot possibly be either losing or "in trouble" except on pitch count... although he could lose the way Harvey Haddix did, the ultimate bummer. Baseball Bugs 20:44, 14 August 2007 (UTC)

Edits

User DCGeist is, once again, reverting edits I make to this page, without taking the trouble to justify his actions on the talk page. I am now, as I have been in the past, attempting to streamline an article that is too long and too wordy and generally too full of crap. As for the edits I am attempting to make now--the information should be about the games. I don't know why anyone would care about David Wells being traded after the 1998 season, or why that bit of info is in an article about perfect games. As for another trivia note that DCGeist insists on retaining--THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A "FIRST YEAR PLAYER" IN BASEBALL. You are either a "rookie", or you are not. Richmond and Robertson were rookies, hence the note. The note should not go into a meaningless distinction between "rookie" and the mythical concept of the "first year player". That particular note is all too typical of the wordy digression that holds this article back from real first-rate status. Vidor 13:10, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

The point of that item, whoever put it in, was the no one has ever thrown a perfect game in his first actual season in the major leagues. Even though technically defined as "rookies", those two already were in their second season of major league experience. Baseball Bugs 15:49, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
Lee Richmond threw a total of nine innings in 1879. Robertson threw two, count 'em, two, innings in 1919. They were rookies. Not to mention, as I said above, that the concept of the 'first year player' is meaningless. The term rookie is defined by baseball, and you are a rookie until such time as you are not. I do appreciate you discussing these edits, unlike DCGeist. Vidor 17:22, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
I do not agree that the "first year player" concept has no meaning. It means exactly what it says: his first season with the team. You could be a 10-year veteran and still be a rookie, theoretically, if you only spent a few days on the roster each of those 10 years. A second-year player can be a rookie because of the way the rules are that arbitrarily define what a "rookie" is. But there could be a significant difference between being a first year player and a second year player, in terms of being "comfortable" as a major leaguer, as well as being physically more mature. Baseball Bugs 17:43, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
Neither nine nor two innings is a season. Nor, in this case, is there any reason to waste verbiage saying that Richmond and Robertson got very brief cups of coffee before their rookie seasons. Vidor 19:07, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
And I maintain that there IS a difference between a first and a second year player. How important that is to the Perfect Game saga is a matter of opinion. Baseball Bugs 19:31, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
I do not agree with the tone of the other editor's agreement with my view on this. Baseball Bugs 19:48, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

User DCGeist continues to revert my edits without commenting here on the talk page. Vidor 23:34, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

User DCGeist continues to revert my edits without commenting here on the talk page. Still. And with a further determination to engage in personal insults. I'm quite willing to be as obstinate as he is. Vidor 12:00, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

Batter vs. Batsman

Please note that in the official rules [3] the term "hit batsman" is used with equal weight, if not more, than "hit batter". It's kind of an archaic term, left over from when baseball was superficially more like cricket than it is now. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 18:00, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

Game notes in dispute

(1) Ward: the point is necessary so the reader understands that Ward was neither a "home" nor an "away" pitcher in the now-customary sense; the circumstances in which he threw his perfect game were quite unusual in this regard, from a modern perspective, and require explication.

(2) Wells: this should be simple--our style here is one bullet per game; there's no reason not to be consistent about this.

(3) First-year players/rookies: we have a long-standing disagreement about this. The version I have reverted to is essentially what it was before Vidor arrrived on the scene. Not only has Vidor not established a consensus for changing it, but he clearly remains in the minority on this specific point.

(4) Wells and Johnson trades: demonstrates the changing nature of baseball--even after such an achievement for their respective teams, these two accomplished pitchers were traded at the end of the relevant seasons; unprecedented in the fourteen cases before Wells, it's now happened two out of three times. This may well be the most minor of the three substantive points here (as opposed to the one stylistic one), but it does have evident significance beyond the trivial.

Note that, despite the personal tone of some of our repartee, I have gone along with other of Vidor's changes, including the trimming of the Larsen game note and the Witt game note.—DCGeist 02:11, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

  • He speaks! Awesome. 1) It of course goes without saying that whether Ward was pitching in the top or bottom half of the inning bears no relevance to his perfect game. 2) "Our style here is one bullet per game"? What? 3) It is still a fact that there is no such thing as a "first-year player". I cannot emphasize enough that this is a fictional concept. This note is all too typical of the minutia that clogs this article, as well as the poor writing--Richmond and Robertson weren't "classified" as rookies, THEY WERE ROOKIES. The "minority" that DCGeist speaks of is a "minority" of a grand total of three people, a minority somewhat lessened by the fact that I am correct on this matter. Anyone who doubts that I am correct can prove me wrong by finding anything in baseball rules, anything at all anywhere, that speaks of a "first-year player". Nevertheless I will let this one go, if need be, as I would like to clean out some other messes that continue to litter this article. (Like the entire paragraph of digression about "Balldom", for instance). 4) The trades of Wells and Johnson, as with other trivia points that DCGeist wishes to retain, have absolutely nothing to do whatsoever with their perfect games.
  • Look, this is simple. Wikipedia is not supposed to be trivia lists. It isn't. That entire section of article could easily be stricken as a trivia list and in fact has been so tagged in the past. To defend that section as useful info and not trivia, it should be written so that the info included is about the games. There is no rational basis for including in an article about perfect games that David Wells was traded after the 1998 season. Vidor 13:08, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

The reference to the 1914 book Balldom has to do with the etymology of the term "perfect game". That is not trivial. And I say again, that a player in his first season in the big leagues is not the same thing as a player in his second season in the big leagues. The term "rookie" is an arbitrary definition based on a minimum number of days on a big league roster. The statistics verify that both of those guys were in their second season on a big league roster. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 13:20, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

A few more responses to Vidor:
(1) You may think that it "goes without saying that whether Ward was pitching in the top or bottom half of the inning bears no relevance to his perfect game." Many of us who have played baseball would strongly disagree. And there is the even more significant matter you have overlooked: whether the pitcher is playing on his home field in front of his home crowd, or not. Perfect games do not take place in a vacuum.
(2) Bullet. For bullet points. You put one right before your response above. You used an asterisk to create it. Ring any bells? One bullet point per game, with whatever relevant data there is following it. Basic layout style.
(3) Yes, we know our positions on the first-year/second-year/rookie issue. And, for the time being, you have lost this argument, because more people disagree with your position than agree with it. Do you understand what it means to lose an argument?
(4) Calling things "trivia" is fun, but you've yet to convince anyone else that the datum concerning Wells and Johnson constitutes trivia. The datum was present in the article for some time before you took an interest in it, and I have made a case for how it is nontrivial and should be retained. You have yet to persuade anyone else that your desire to remove it should be fulfilled--as, say, the way you persuaded me that the Larsen note should be trimmed. So, for the time being, this datum stays. Maybe you'd like to see if you can convince Baseball Bugs to agree with you that it should go. And if you can't, once again, you should understand that you've lost this argument. Do you understand how this works?
I ask the questions above, which I know may sound condescending, because your repeated deletions of material from the article without mustering support for your position demonstrate that you probably do not understand the basic principles at work here. It's okay. You'll learn.—DCGeist 17:24, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
And a few more points in response. 1) Regarding "Balldom", I contend that everything in that paragraph after the first sentence is completely irrelevant. The section is named "Origin of term". The origin of the term is given in the very first sentence; it was coined by I.E. Sanborn in 1908. That's it. That's the origin of the term. The following verbiage talks at great length about Ernest J. Lanigan for reasons that are unclear, because if there's one thing that we know for certain from the first sentence, Ernest J. Lanigan did NOT coin the term "perfect game". Also, the beginning of the Lanigan digression is a violation of the rule against 'weasel words'. "Several sources have claimed". Who? Which sources? If I had my way, all of that would be stricken, as would the entire section, with the bit about I.E. Sanborn probably put in the front matter. However, I am not inclined to fight this.
2) Regarding rookies, I really can't agree that I have "lost" an argument in which there are only three people participating. Unfortunately, DCGeist can't really defend any of his edits on the merits, so he must resort to childish insults like "Do you understand what it means to lose an argument?". I invite anyone, anyone at all, to show me documentation that proves anybody outside of people editing the Wikipedia "perfect game" article recognize the concept of the "first-year player". Not to mention that beyond that, my version of the note is more concise and better written. The note as DCGeist would have it is all too typical of his poor writing style and convoluted verbiage. Shorter is better.
3)DCGeist has certainly made no argument for the Wells and Johnson 'datum' not being trivia. Because it's trivia. It is, yet again, wholly irrelevant to their perfect games. DCGeist can throw all the insults he wants and this will not be any less true.
4) Speaking of 'not understanding things', as DCGeist charges me with, DCGeist attempts to justify the pointless trivia bit about Lee Richmond and the coin flip by writing something about how it matters that Ward wasn't pitching in front of his home crowd. DCGeist's bottomless understanding of the game of baseball unfortunately does not help him to understand that Ward was pitching in front of a home crowd in any case, whether his team lost the coin flip for last at-bat or not.
So, like I said, I can be very patient. These edits have certainly convinced me that my version of this article is much, much better than DCGeist's. Still, I have let DCGeist have his way with almost every point in contention. The pointless paragraph about "Balldom" remains. The long, boring, and not particularly interesting section about 'no-walk-no-hit-no-hit-batsman' games, remains, despite the fact that (much like the mythical "first-year player") no such concept exists, and despite the lack of any justification for listing a bunch of games that most definitely were NOT perfect. But I care about this article enough to challenge DCGeist's apparent belief that he owns it and he gets to decide everything about it. DCGeist may submit this article to some kind of conflict resolution if he desires. I'm confident that the article will come out of conflict resolution looking more like my version, because my version is better: clearer, more concise, and more focused on the actual subject at hand rather than talking about 'the changing nature of the game' by including pointless flotsam about how David Wells got traded. Vidor 19:41, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
There's no conflict worthy of resolution here. You've garnered no support for your changes and they will continue to be reverted. On the point you resorted to shouting about: it is important to clarify for the reader that despite Ward pitching at home, his team was in the field at the bottom of each inning. The inclusion of the simple data point here readily prevents misundertanding of the course of the game and misdescriptions of it. Your ravings about "pointless flotsam," your false claims that I have "made no argument" where I patently have, and your inability to understand that one is less than two demonstrate that further discussion will not be fruitful. Goodbye, Vidor.—DCGeist 19:56, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
it is important to clarify for the reader that despite Ward pitching at home, his team was in the field at the bottom of each inning. Why? What else shall we clarify for the reader? Should we tell the reader what mode of transportation Ward took to the stadium? Vidor 20:04, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Oh, one more thing. Your characterization of me as a vandal is an outright lie. A vandal would do things like wipe out the whole page and replace it with "STEVE IS A HOMO" or something. Vidor 20:08, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Well, vandals do many different sorts of things. At any rate, while the edit summary to which you refer was not an "outright lie," it does represent an error in judgment. As I explained in a subsequent summary, "your repeated deletion of significant information without establishing a consensus to do so is effectively vandalism." In other words, while you are not a vandal, the overall effect of your recent activity on this article has been barely distinguishable from the effect a vandal's activity would have (e.g., wasting productive contributors' time and energy, which could be spent, for instance, properly formatting the citations as I have done). Now, of course, we must characterize you as a 3RR violator.—DCGeist 21:07, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

In reference to Lanigan's Cyclopedia and the book Balldom (you gotta love those goofy names they came up with in those days), it is not the case that Sanborn coined the phrase "perfect game"... that's just the first reference we have. I'm trying to provide as much information as I know about the term's origins... maybe to inspire other readers (besides us three) to go out and do some further research. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 00:59, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Request for comment: Perfect game

Request for comment on editing disputes regarding game notes, as detailed in the discussion sections above. Vidor 20:18, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Vidor has violated the three-revert rule on Perfect game. Any administrator may now choose to block his account. Four reverts in under 19 hours: [4], [5], [6], [7].—DCGeist 20:23, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
I wonder if calling me a vandal violates Wikipedia policy on personal attacks. Vidor 20:30, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
I am, more or less, in favor of including the "trivia" Vidor has wanted to exclude. There a few points which may be useful to consider in this connection. The dispute is largely driven by a desire for brevity. While I agree that brevity is good, too much is bad. We do not here have a paper/cost budget within which to fit, rambling shambles of trivia burdened articles are simply poor writing, and WP ought to, and sometimes does, have higher standards.
Where the boundary should be is a matter of taste. In the case of baseball stats and facts, I'm inclined to include stuff rather than remove it. Which stats are kept is an arbitrary decision, and which are non-trivial is a personal opinion, of course, which are at least some of the reasons baseball is fascinating to those of us who are. Whatever term is used for the first two perfect game pitchers (rookie, first year,...) it's an interesting point that they were inexperienced. It provides context for the raw facts here, which is a perfectly acceptable goal for an encyclopedia -- in fact, a primary goal for a general encyclopedia. Thus, I'd include more than excise. ww 20:55, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for commenting without the use of personal insults. I do not agree with your post above but if an actual consensus (as opposed to the non-existent "consensus" claimed by DCGeist) forms around the points in contention I am willing to abide by it. Vidor 21:02, 21 August 2007 (UTC)
The 3RR matter has been resolved. In our colloquy on his Talk page, Vidor has posed a couple of questions relevant to this RfC. I'll reproduce them here, along with my answers:
Will you ever tell us how the coin flip in John Ward's game affected whether he was pitching in front of a home or away crowd?
To reiterate and explain still further: The coin flip meant that he pitched in the bottom rather than the top of each inning. There is a potential effect on strategy and thus performance. There is also a potential for misunderstanding by present-day readers. Someone scanning the boxscore could easily conclude that Ward was pitching away from home. The inclusion of the brief data point eliminates much of the possibility for confusion about the location and actual course of the game. As User:ww suggests, this sort of datum also educates the reader in one way the game and its basic rules have changed over the years.
Will we ever find out what David Wells getting traded has to do with his perfect game?.
Ah...the article is not just about what given information "x" reveals about any given perfect game. It's also about what perfect games reveal about the rest of baseball. In this case, the fact that two of the three most recent perfect game pitchers were soon traded evidences that even such a remarkable achievement does nothing to secure a player's place with a team in contemporary MLB culture.—DCGeist 00:34, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
Since DCGeist has seen fit to cut and paste dialogue from my talk page onto this page, I am compelled to respond. His justification of the business about the John Ward coin flip fails to mention that the entry on Ward quite clearly states the location of the game. His justification of the bit about David Wells being traded is a distillation of all that is wrong with this overgrown, weed-choked article. This is not an article about contemporary MLB culture. This is an article about perfect games. Or, rather, it should be an article about perfect games, but the material about perfect games has been buried under an enormous pile of miscellany. Maybe one day when I have the time I'll try and figure out how much of the article actually talks about the seventeen games and how much is extraneous material. (Don Larsen was traded to the Athletics in 1959. Dennis Martinez left the Expos via free agency in 1993. As a matter of fact, if I recall correctly, the only players who pitched a perfect game and did not later move on to other teams are Sandy Koufax and Addie Joss, the latter having died prematurely. Maybe we should make that a trivia factoid.... Vidor 02:44, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
One word here begs the question: "Buried"? What article are you talking about? This one happens to make it very, very easy to locate the basic information about the 17 official MLB perfect games and then provides a variety of additional information likely to be of interest to those who want to delve a bit further into the topic—first on the specific games themselves and then on closely related matters. You have stated very clearly in your edit summaries that you find much of this information to be "boring." I know you're disappointed over how few people have participated in this discussion, but judging the only way we can--that is, by we few--you appear to be quite alone in your opinion.—DCGeist 03:21, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

(unindenting) How about "weed-choked"? How about "bloated"? Let's take a tour through the article and see how much of the article is about baseball's seventeen perfect games, and how much is about other crap. All aboard...Introduction: that's actually all right. Table: that's all right, too. Game notes: contains a great deal of minutia. There's the Ward coin toss (which, despite your efforts to justify it, in no way impacts on John Ward's performance in retiring 27 batters). Catfish Hunter's hitting day--not really germane, but maybe one could let that fly. bunning and Young driving in runs--pure trivia. "The latest the winning run has been scored is the seventh inning"--more pointless trivia. Wells and Johnson getting traded--as has been discussed above in great depth, this has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with their perfect games. It really, really, really doesn't. Origin of term: as also discussed above in great length, the actual origin of the term is covered in the first sentence of this section. The rest is an entire paragraph that, for reasons that have never been made clear, talks about someone named Ernest J. Lanigan who most definitely did NOT invent the term perfect game. It further digresses into a book called "Balldom" that also did NOT invent the term "perfect game".

If this were all it maybe wouldn't be so bad. But unfortunately we must continue to use our word machete to hack through this article. Questions of definition--some of this is good, but some is redundant either with the note in the introduction about the 1991 definition, or the section immediately following about Haddix and unofficial perfect games. Something needs to be tightened. Unofficial perfect games--this section is largely bloat free, although it should be noted that it is in fact an entire section about games that weren't perfect. Let's remember that as we proceed. Perfect games lost to the 27th batter--Also largely bloat-free in itself, but this is the second consecutive section about games that weren't perfect. Nine or more consecutive innings of perfection--The third section in a row about games that WEREN'T PERFECT. I would edit out the part about the nine games where a pitcher let the leadoff man on. There is no justification for talking about those games in this article. They weren't perfect. The games of Hoyt and Wise are noteworthy because they retired more than 27 batters in a row in the course of a game. Al Atkinson and the rest listed after cannot even claim that. It's just a list of one-hitters that are in the article for no reason.

Still we move on, using our word machete to hack and slash our way through the article. No-hit, no-walk, no-hit batsman games--in an article ostensibly about perfect games, this is the fourth section in a row about games that weren't perfect. Nap Rucker, Sept, 5, 1908? Not perfect. Terry Mulholland? Not perfect. Much as in the subsection above about dudes who walked the leadoff hitter, there is no justification for spending this much verbiage about games that were not perfect. It is also almost completely unsourced. Fiction--at least this section is short.

In closing, I'll note that the article is 43 KB in its present form, and the Wikipedia style manual recommends dividing an article into smaller articles when it exceeds 40 KB. I'll also note that User: DCGeist wiped out my initial edits back in June with no discussion, cited a "procedure" for making edits to an article that does not exist, demanded "consensus" in an article that has virtually never had more than two or three people a month commenting on it, has called me a vandal, and has personally insulted me on numerous occasions. I have resisted the temptation to report him for his numerous personal attacks. Vidor 14:31, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

You need to understand that the apparently excessive explanation on the origin of the term is to pre-empt someone coming in and claiming that the term originated with Lanigan in 1922, because that's what the Dickson Baseball Dictionary claims. That minutia is necessary to explain why the Dickson claim is not true. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 15:14, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

Bad Math

Considering all the absurdly incorrect information I encounter on Wikipedia, this one isn't nearly as bad, but the following citation "In sum, a perfect game is thrown once in about every 20,000 major league contests" is flat out wrong by a magnitude of about 2. There have been approximately 190,000 major league games and 17 perfect games, which is one perfect game in about 11,000 contests, not 20,000. I suspect the original author of that statement simply summed the total number of games played by each team and forgot to divide by two (when the Yankees play the Red Sox, both teams are credited with "one game played" but it is only one contest.)

I also suspect that some lazy person will notice that baseball-reference.com, an otherwise excellent site, lists approximately 380,000 games played, believe that the "1 in 20,000 claim" is correct and revert my edit, but that also double counts each game without dividing by two. If one takes the time to sum the games played by each team and divides by two, one will see that the correct number of MLB games played is around 190,000, and the perfect game rate about 1 in 11,000 contests as I have mentioned.

Given how readily obtainable baseball statistics are, it is truly embarassing that inaccurate statements like these exist on Wikipedia when anyone can do five minutes of research and discover that the true perfect game rate is 1 in 11,000 contests, not 1 in 20,000. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.45.106.216 (talk) 08:41, August 27, 2007 (UTC)

Despite the above explanation, you replaced the cited statement with a blind assertion, and I reverted it. What I'm doing now is putting back the full original quote, along with pointing out the arithmetic error, to make things clearer. I'm assuming, at that point, that your sort-of citation of baseball-reference.com, listed above, is correct. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 09:24, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Even though nothing about Wikipedia should surprise me at this point, I would love to know how a mathematical calculation that any 8 year old with a calculator can perform (go to baseball-reference.com, add up the number of games, divide by 2, then divide by the 17 perfect games) can possibly be considered a "blind assertion." If you want to verify it for yourself, go to literally any website that lists baseball statistics and do the math. Because some shoddy researcher forgot to divide by two but he published a book, I'm supposed to leave that reference intact even though that reference has no basis in fact? I suppose claiming that had I corrected an entry which claimed "1 in 10 US presidents has been named George Bush" would be a similar "blind assertion." LOL. 68.45.106.216 09:49, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Because you offered no evidence, thus it looked like "original research". However, I found the baseball-reference figures [8] which confirm 381,856 games to date (i.e. more than twice the number in the refence, which stands to reason as that was several years ago) and will include the URL so that the reader can more clearly see what the issue is. My guess is that whoever blindly copied that reference didn't stop to look at the arithmetic. What I find at least as troubling is the question of whether it was Holtzman that got it wrong, which could be forgiven, or Buckley himself. I know for sure that Buckley got the origin of the term "perfect game" wrong, as he blindly cited Dickson, which suggests that he didn't do any primary-source research on the games. Also, whoever wrote that obviously did not divide 180,000 by 16, which would be the most obvious thing to do and would yield the right answer. They might have divided 360,000 by 2, and then forgot to divide 22,000 by 2 also. So it's hard to tell what they had in mind. Maybe somebody could find the Buckley book and confirm exactly what he said. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 10:01, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Your rationalization is absurd. I explained in lengthy detail the relevant calculations, that the total number of games divided by the number of perfect games is about half as many as the quoted figure, and you have the gall to call me a "vandal" rather than verify these figures for yourself? Because some idiot published a book which contained an obvious error that neither he nor any editor bothered to verify, they are "sources" and I am a "vandal???"
It is a sad statement on the uselessness of Wikipedia that users would sooner assume that a quoted figure is incorrect and accuse the person who corrected the misinformation of being a "vandal" rather than take a few minutes to do the relevant math. It is a further sad statement that simple division that any 8 year old could do is considered "original research." As I said, would refuting a statement that "1 in 10 Presidents is named George Bush" constitute "original research?"
I was telling a friend in the UK who is new to baseball about perfect games and couldn't remember if there'd been 14 or 15, and sadly for me the second Google hit on "perfect game" baseball is this Wikipedia article. How sorry a state of affairs that my attempt at introducing a foreigner to the wonderful sport of baseball results in finding an article which remained inaccurate for about ten months since the original edit was made that no one bothered to verify, despite the numerous edits to this page, and my attempt at correcting this misinformation results in me being called a "vandal." 68.45.106.216 11:10, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
And by the way, he also got the percent wrong. He said 1 in 22,000 was about .00005 percent. Actually, 1 divided by 22,000 is about .00005 (actually .0000454). That's the percentage, but the percent is .005, which is another error I'm fixing. It's funny with all the wrangling in the article recently, that no one except yourself caught this. We should give you a rusty star for this. d:) Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 10:13, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

<--- back to the left for readability

I suppose we have differing definitions of what is "funny." I consider being called a vandal for doing simple division rather insulting, not "funny." I also consider the fact that this grossly inaccurate statement was allowed to remain for almost 10 months as a total embarassment, not a humorous point. People will gladly nitpick over trivial details yet not even bother to spend a couple minutes verifying that a simple calculation is correct, and that's par for the course on Wikipedia.

I try to avoid reading anything on Wikipedia for that reason but every once in a while it's the first hit on Google, and the things I've had to correct are utterly embarassing. I recently found a quote on Pete Rose's page citing the "HOF monitor" on baseball-reference.com as evidence of Rose's HOF worthiness, even though baseball-reference.com very clearly states that the "HOF monitor" is a metric to assess one's HOF election likelihood, not worthiness, and yet that factually inaccurate statement remained for months. On other occasions, I've discussed scientific topics with friends, checked the internet for verification and found similarly inaccurate statements on Wikipedia science pages that have remained for almost a year. POV arguments are one thing but it is a complete embarassment that such inaccurate and easily debunked details are allowed to remain unedited for so long.68.45.106.216 11:19, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

And in my own defense, I am not a "figger filbert", so those numbers did not jump out at me. I'm more interested in the general history of the game, such as why the pitching distance is 60 feet 6 inches rather than just 60 feet. But I'm sure Ernie Lanigan would have had a good time with this one. His Cyclopedia has a number of little editorial remarks about other sources who got their facts wrong. You're not a descendent of his, by any chance? d:) Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 10:22, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
If you're more interested in the history of baseball than the relevant numbers, why in the world would you assume that someone who made a detailed correction of a grossly inaccurate numerical statement is a "vandal" instead of verifying the information yourself? It's not as if I said something as obviously incorrect as "Baseball was invented in 1979 by a group of school children in Peru who practiced baseball twice a day as recreation after a hearty meal of lentils and rice." 68.45.106.216 11:22, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
If you're done venting now (and I do understand your irritation), let me point out that the way you did that original edit looked like vandalism. An IP address, removing a reference, making a statement with no reference backing it up looks like vandalism. And putting a "reference" in the talk page (which I hadn't noticed initially) or the edit summary is not sufficient. It has to be in the article. So, although you made the statement that pointed this error out, I ended up having to do the work that you could have done, since you obviously looked up the info. Another thing to point out is that wikipedia is "written by the people" and thus is no more reliable than anything else on the internet. No one should ever take anything in print or on the Internet at face value. If it has the ring of truth, fine. But errors arise everywhere. Thus the saving grace of wikipedia is the theory that someone will fix someone else's mistakes. But as you say, they have to notice them first. "Funny" meaning "peculiar", not "ha-ha". Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 11:35, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Your vandalism argument is circular, as the reason why I use an IP address and refuse to sign up for a Wikipedia account is because I believe Wikipedia is a largely useless, due to the lack of verifiability. Even those who have signed up for accounts often make inaccurate edits which are allowed to stand for months at a time, and it's as if the mere fact that they've signed up for accounts gives them more verifiability than an IP address, and I wish not to tacitly support such a venture of propagating misinformation. Isolated incidents would be understandable, but given how rarely I read Wikipedia pages, it's rather absurd how often I find inaccurate statements that I recognize to be obviously incorrect, even in fields where I am certainly not an expert. In many of the cases where I've corrected such obvious inaccuracies, the person who posted the inaccurate information is a user with a Wikipedia account and the inaccurate information stood for many months. Had the inaccurate edit on this page been made in the last month or two I'd have no complaint, but this was made in Nov 2006 and there have been hundreds of nitpicky edits since then. In other words, I don't find it at all peculiar that I was the first person to notice such a mistake 10 months after the fact--that's par for the course on Wikipedia.
By not registering, and relying only on an IP address, you are actually easier to "track down", if that's what your concern is. According to who-is-IP, you're on Comcast based in a city in New Jersey. Which is not a breach of confidence, as any 8-year-old child could run such an item. It's even listed on your user page. If you register, only an admin can track you down. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 14:48, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
I have no objection to being "tracked down" (and I also don't even live in New Jersey), I simply do not believe Wikipedia has an appropriate verification processes such that I should support such an endeavour with a registered account. 10:30, 28 August 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.45.106.216 (talk)
If the edit was made on something like Barry Bonds's page, or some team where an opposing fan might vandalize, I could see the argument of potential vandalism, but I think Occam's Razor would suggest that if somebody edits something as non-controversial as the rarity of a perfect game, while also providing a reference to the number of games in MLB history, where simple division provides the verifiability, the edit in question is probably not vandalism. In any event, I don't at all object to your revised edit while correcting the original inaccurate citation and expanding on my edit, in fact I think you did a very thorough job with it. I object to your original accusation that I am a vandal.
Regarding statistical citations, look at any player's page, even that of a popular player, and it is routine that statistics are quoted without citation. Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babe_Ruth has many references where the statistics quoted are not cited, and there's no warning at the top that "This article lacks citations." Would you remove ever single statistic from Babe Ruth's page claiming that it needs a reference? Of course not. Another sport example, I was just discussing Buster Douglas, so I checked his Wikipedia page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buster_Douglas and not a single citation is contained within. I'm not sure how it's arguable that citations for specific details are needed when so many other pages lack such details. For something that might be objectionable or controversial, sure, but if someone else doesn't have to site "Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs in 1927," why must I cite "There have been about 190,000 games of major league baseball" when they're both easily verifiable? I'd have even included a cite to baseball-reference.com except that there was no way to do so and also explain that they were listing the "paired games" and division by 2 is necessary.
While the point of "caveat emptor" on the internet is reasonable, I do not know of a single other website that routinely turns up at the top of a Google search with anywhere near the inaccuracy of Wikipedia. 68.45.106.216 12:38, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

<--- and again

The reason you must cite 190,000 games is that that fact is not readily known to baseball fans, whereas the 60 homers in 1927 is. And I would like to see a citation for your claim about wikipedia vs. other site's inaccuracies, beyond your "original research" on the subject. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 12:43, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

The 60 homers in 1927 is just an example. Feel free to use a more obscure statistic from Ruth's career, for example "Despite a weak offense and hurt by the sale of Tris Speaker to the Indians, the Red Sox still made it to the World Series. They defeated the Brooklyn Robins four games to one." I am morally certain the average baseball fan is not even aware that the Brooklyn Dodgers were once called the Brooklyn Robins, let alone that they participated in the 1916 World Series. It's also common sense that the total number of MLB games can't be anywhere near 340,000 (the requisite number for the 1 in 20,000 figure to be correct), as that would be 140 seasons of 30 teams and 162 games, and it's readily known to baseball fans that MLB has only been around for 137 years and that there used to be far fewer teams. I have to provide citations because something involving common sense that any 8 year old could figure out is not "readily known???"
The fact of the 1916 World Series result, as well as the Dodgers' alternate nickname "Robins" are adequately covered and cited in various places; and the value judgment as to how the Red Sox got to the Series would have to be cited, an editor's personal opinion on the matter is insufficient. And not everyone would take the time to figure out the total number of games. Believe it or not, some people don't deal with numbers well, and many don't know so much about the history of the game as you and I, so it is not at all "common sense" to the general reader that 340,000 is too large a figure. So a citation is required, such as the one I provided, since you have taken far more time to argue over all this than would have been taken to supply the citation. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 13:07, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
And by the way, the 60 in 1927 is cited, in the link that lists Ruth's year-by-year stats. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 12:45, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Specifically, the problem with your edit is that you rubbed out the reference and inserted the statement "In sum, as there have been slightly more than 190,000 major league games, a perfect game is thrown once in about every 11,000 major league contests." I assure you, that would be subject to a "fact" tag, as there is no basis given for that 190,000 figure. And that lack of any reference in the article is why I reverted it initially. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 12:13, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
I "rubbed out" the reference because the reference was inaccurate garbage. While I do agree that your debunking of that pile of crap was quite thorough, it strikes me as a little quixotic to spend ten lines debunking something wrong somebody once printed in some book. I'm not inclined to treat a reference as worthy simply because some publisher who can't be bothered to hire competent editors printed inaccurate information in a book. In any event, given how many Wikipedia pages quote baseball statistics without citation, why is my quoted figure any different than the other examples, for example the Buster Douglas one, which has far as I know doesn't contain a SINGLE citation in the entire article?
Then it is your right as a wikipedia editor to add an "uncited" banner to that article and call that situation to someone's attention. And if you care sufficiently about the article, you could start looking up citations... just as you compelled me to do for this article. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 12:58, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

<--- again

Despite my general disgust with Wikipedia, I do try to make corrections in a useful manner, so I'm not quite sure how to do these things in the future. Any 8 year old could verify that there have been about 190,000 games, but how can such a thing be cited without essentially citing myself to clarify that the baseball-reference.com figure needs to be divided by 2? 68.45.106.216 12:48, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

The point is to not force people to go to Google to look up stuff, but rather to provide the info for them, as part of the content. This entire megillah would have been avoided had you provided that citation, and the 8-year-old argument does not enter into it. As to why nobody caught it, I can only speak for myself (I'm waiting for the should-be equally red-faced DCGeist and Vidor to add their dos centavos here), and have to say that that info was of little tangible interest to me, it's just numbers. Far more interesting, historically, is the way perfect games have tended to "bunch", and to also become more frequent in recent years. The 132-year statistical average, even when accurately rendered, has little real meaning except to show how few perfect games have occurred... which is readily apparent just from the small count of perfect games vs. the number of years the major league game has been played. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 12:57, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure which reference I was supposed to cite, as the baseball-reference one doesn't mentioned the "paired event" thing and I couldn't clarify that without referencing myself. I did try searching Google for various variations of "How many MLB games have been played" mlb number of games history, that sort of thing, and didn't find a reference. As it is, even with your rather comprehensive edit, the reader must take your word for it that baseball-reference is simply listing aggregate games by team and didn't divide by 2 for the total number of games played. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.45.106.216 (talk) 13:07, August 27, 2007 (UTC)
You're right, I have made some assumptions and arguably imposed some "original research" on the citation. And what you've just told me contradicts your argument that this is an easy citation to find. In truth, just looking at their bare number of 381,856, "common sense" doesn't tell me anything about whether that number is right or not. There's a way to get a sense of whether its order of magnitude is right, though. I will assume 16 teams X 154 games per season X 132 years (excluding the N.A.) That gives me a number of 325,248. Now, I know that they played fewer games before the turn of the century, and that they played more games, and with more teams, since 1961. But that's close enough that my "common sense" tells me that that order of magnitude is about right, and that the number they show must be the accumulation of every teams wins, losses and ties. And since every game involves two teams, the number of actual games played would be exactly half that figure. Now, tell me what point there is in compelling every reader of the article to go through that same mental exercise, when we can provide it, with a proper citation. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 13:18, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
I suppose that it isn't an "easy citation to find" because if it was easy to find, I'd have cited something myself. But, it is "easy mathematics" for anyone who questions my comment, you simply need to find a baseball statistics site that lists games per season per team, add those up, and divide by two, and that calculation is the number of games played. It sounds like I could have done those quick calculations myself, referenced every team's page on baseball-reference.com, and then cited myself, and been meta-referencing instead of doing "original research" but that strikes me as overly complicated. 68.45.106.216 10:38, 28 August 2007 (UTC)
To clarify, I had no intention of forcing the reader to do anything more than necessary. I had no idea how to offer a citation with the aggregate number of games, and I don't see how what you've just said is anything other than vigorous hand-waving than an actual "citation." In other words, while I have no objection to anything you've said, I don't see how it's any different than my statement of "The number of MLB games is this." I suppose we have to agree to disagree at this point although at least we agree the end result is a good one. 68.45.106.216 10:42, 28 August 2007 (UTC)


Picking 2006 NL at random, they show pitching stats of 2,590 games. Dividing that by 162 comes pretty close to 16. That suggests that all of their total games figures come from blindly adding up the stats, i.e. the actual number of NL games played in 2006 was 1,295. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 13:27, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

To the user who corrected the formatting... the layout may have gone mad, but we had the best of indentions. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 14:13, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

I think that the angry, ranting user who started this comment section is wrong. There have been approximately 190,000 major league games and 17 perfect games, which is one perfect game in about 11,000 contests, not 20,000. Now, here is my question: each major league game is TWO chances for a perfect game, is it not? Each game has two starting pitchers, each of which can throw a perfect game, correct? So would not the correct number indeed be 380,000?

By the way, to address the angry, hostile comments by the anonymous user who started this section, I can only say that I didn't do the "five minutes' research" that Anonymous User recommended because I didn't care about that particular data point. Also, if Anonymous User is so filled with rage by this article, perhaps he can make other edits to improve this. Like taking out that stupid bit about David Wells getting traded. Vidor 09:22, 29 August 2007 (UTC)

Put some bandages on your scraped knuckles and try that again. Despite all of the weasel words thrown around to make me appear like the one at fault even though I made a simple correction, explained it, and was called a "vandal" for my troubles, even those defaming me still admit that my phrasing is correct. The statement "The historic rate of a starting pitcher throwing a perfect game has been 1 in 22,000 games," is correct. So the statement "There's been a perfect game thrown in 1 of every 11,000 contests." But stating that "There's been a perfect game thrown in 1 in every 22,000 contests" is wrong. The fact that these statements are even being debated is bad enough, let alone that I'm being called a vandal for trying to explain this.
I am not at all "filled with rage" by the article. The article is a pile of crap, but so is most of the content of the article. My contempt is directed at the people who chose to revert my edits and defame me by calling me a vandal and worse. I must say that I'm amused by the "Oh, I didn't care about that part of the article" excuse even though you've made no less than 30 edits to this page in the last 10 weeks, not to mention the "If you don't like it, why don't you edit it yourself!" claims as an excuse for the rest of your collective incompetence. If I'm going to be called a vandal for performing simple division, why should I bother with participating in such a cesspool? 68.45.106.216 15:03, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
I am not at all "filled with rage" by the article.--Well, yes you are, actually. Crazed, spittle-flecked, skull-crushing rage. The article is a pile of crap--I would actually agree with this. As I've written at great length here, user DCGeist has filled this article with paragraph after paragraph of boring minutia and pointless, irrelevant trivia, and then fought like a tiger to retain all of that trivia. So you're right, the article is a pile of crap. But not because of this. I must say that I'm amused by the "Oh, I didn't care about that part of the article" excuse First, it's not an excuse, because I truly don't care about that factoid. Second, I truly don't care about that factoid. If you take the time to look, you will find that all of my edits to this article have been an attempt to clean it of some of the garbage that DCGeist has littered it with. why should I bother with participating in such a cesspool?--I think I speak for the readers and editors of this article, the Wikipedia community as a whole, and perhaps the entire human race, when I say that you should follow that instinct and not participate in this cesspool. Vidor 16:18, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
It's an interesting point. It's true that each major league game offers two chances for a no-hitter. But by definition, the maximum number of perfect games that can be thrown in a contest is one--as a perfect game must, among other things, be a shutout victory. The language arrived is both accurate and probably the most appropriate way to express the data.—DCGeist 09:35, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
Typed before DCGeist posted, so maybe some duplication ... A quick look at the comments on the "user page" for User:68.45.106.216 indicates that the user is simply a sniper who's unwilling to do anything positive... which we could already tell from his rant. You make an interesting point about which way to count the games. Let's suppose that it's the last day of the season, it goes 9 innings, and then gets rained out. All the stats count, so arguably it's a double perfect game - though maybe not according to the rules. In fact, if you can't have a double perfect game, based on the rules (although you could have a double no-hitter, if a team scores without any hits), then you're back to the 190,000. Either way, there is still the issue of the arithmetic, because the citation doesn't explain it that way... which requires further lengthy discussion in the citation about the numbers. Maybe stating the facts without hammering home the conclusions is the best thing. It's all kind of overkill anyway, just to demonstrate in more statistical depth what's already obvious - that perfect games are rare. I'm guessing that IP address is chortling over the minor hornets' nest he unleashed. Unrelated, I moved most of the minutia about the origin of the term to the citation, which is where it belongs rather than cluttering up the body of the article, which I think was your point on that point. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 09:38, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
Nice weasel words and a lame attempt at trolling at that. Despite my general disgust with the abhorrent level of inaccuracy on Wikipedia, I've made plenty of edits which have mostly been corrections to obvious math errors, misspellings, typos, etc. The fact that you consider such edits as "not anything positive" speaks volumes about why you would revert my math correction as "vandalism." It is also absolutely hilarious that you would consider such corrections as a negative thing and the work of a "sniper." The fact that beliefs such as these are common amongst the Wikipedia community is why I want no part of it. It is also hilarious that YOU were the one who stirred up the hornets nest by deleting my factually correct statement and claiming it was vandalism.68.45.106.216 15:12, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
The wording of the quote is "there have been 190,000 games played", which is a true statement. Even if it were a double perfect game, if the rules allowed that, then it's still only one game, even though it counts as "two" games statistically. It's like how many innings are played. The statistical number of innings played is double the actual number of innings played, because the teams switch sides. A regulation game shows 18 innings pitched statistically. Yet it only went 9 innings. If it went 8 1/2 innings, then it's 17 innings pitched. Effectively, the 8 1/2 or 9 inning game is 18 or 17 "half innings". Similarly, the 190,000 games is 380,000 "half games". Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 09:44, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
A couple of things. First, if I am reading Rule 4.12 from the Official Info correctly, then a double perfect game is indeed impossible, even in the rainout scenario. Such a game would be a suspended game to be completed later. However, this is a recent change for 2007; before this season tie games called on account of rain were booked as ties, with the statistics counting. (For years I wondered how Jose Oquendo managed to play in 163 games in 1989). So in theory before this year a double perfect game would have been possible with a rainout. But I don't think that's relevant. It's not important that a double perfect game is impossible. The point is that at the start of the game each pitcher has a chance to throw a perfect game. That's been true of all 190,000 MLB games played, including the 17 games in which one of the two pitchers actually managed to do it. For that matter, the seventeen guys that threw perfect games didn't prevent the other seventeen starting pitchers from throwing one. Mike Hampton did not fail to throw a perfect game on May 18, 2004 because Randy Johnson threw one. He failed to throw one because Matt Kata reached on an error in the first inning. If Hampton had been perfect too, then they would have kept pitching into extra innings, until one or both of them (or one of the relief pitchers after them) lost the perfect game. But they both had a chance, as has every starting pitcher ever, all 380,000 of them. Except for Jason Marquis. Vidor 12:02, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
Forgetting the perfect game scenario, let's say it's simply a complete game of 9 innings for each pitcher. Thus in the overall pitching stats it's counted as 2 games for the pitchers, as well as for the teams, to make the numbers balance. But it's only 1 actual game. And a perfect game is only 1 actual game, even though it's 2 games statistically. The statement was that of the 190,000 games played, 17 have been perfect games. The author's intent would seem to be focused on actual games played. And obviously, for the other pitcher, it was not a perfect game. The perfect game occurs on only one side of the statistical equation. But the actual game, in total, was labeled a perfect game. So whether it's one pitcher or two, it's still only one actual game. That does raise the question of how they would handle it if a double perfect game ever did happen. Would they call it a perfect game? Or would they call it two perfect games? And the reason I said "the last day of the season" is that if the game ends in a tie, it will not be made up unless it affects the pennant race. Similarly, a late-season rainout that's the last meeting of two clubs will not be made up unless it affects the pennant race. I ran across the extra-games subject just today, in looking at home run totals for 1961. I wonder if you know that Maris actually had 163 games to try for his 61 homers, and that Ruth in 1927 had 155, due to ties from rain or darkness. Ties don't happen very often now; the games usually get suspended, in order to prevent shenanigans by the teams. But if it's the last meeting, it won't be suspended, it will be a tie, and if it turns out to affect the race, a new game will be required (I think so anyway; you might have to check on that). Also, if it's late in the season and the game doesn't matter, a rainout in less than 5 innings can result in a season of 161 games instead of 162, for both clubs obviously, and the stats don't count. In 1961, the number of games credited to teams ranged from 161 to 163 due to these oddities. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 12:27, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
As far as I'm concerned what it boils down to is that 380,000 pitchers had a chance to throw a perfect game and 17 of them did it. So if one wishes to keep that factoid in the article, it should be calculated on that basis. Vidor 12:43, 29 August 2007 (UTC)
That would be a misleading computation. It would be best to say that 190,000 games have been played, and 17 of them turned out to be perfect games (for one of the pitchers), and leave the rest of the arithmetic totally out of it. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 13:51, 29 August 2007 (UTC)

(unindenting) Well, no, it would be a completely accurate computation. 380,000 pitchers have taken the mound to start baseball games, and seventeen of them have thrown perfect games. Vidor 01:08, 30 August 2007 (UTC)

The quote says 190,000 games, and that's unambiguous. The way you put it is statistically correct, but would likely confuse the average reader. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 01:27, 30 August 2007 (UTC)
So, you admit that my edit was unambiguous but you reverted it, claiming it was vandalism. Which is it, unambigious, or vandalism? You are the worst sort of internet troll, the type who uses inflammatory language and weasel words like "vandal," "sniper" and the like, and has the unmitigated gall to accuse someone else of deliberately stirring up trouble, when in fact you're the one trolling. The only trouble that occurred was due to *YOU* reverting my factual and easily verifiable correction. You obviously hold those who correct math, spelling, grammar in disdain, as noted by your use of the word "sniper" to describe my edits, but regardless of your own personal opinion, there is no need to revert these corrections. 68.45.106.216 19:22, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
Incidentally, I just laughed out loud when checking out your edits and discovering that the other day you went crying to the Wikipedia admins because an image you posted that violated copyright was deleted. What color is the sky in your world that violating copyright is acceptable but performing simple division is not??? Maybe I'll go crying to the Wikipedia admins that you claimed that performing division is "original research." 68.45.106.216 19:29, 3 September 2007 (UTC)

BTW, the terms "first year player" and "second year player" are still entirely meaningless. Cheers! Vidor 18:25, 22 September 2007 (UTC)

June 12, 1880

The Scrapbook History of Baseball, edited by Deutsch, Cohen, Johnson and Neft, Bobbs-Merrill, 1975, p.14. Game report and box score from a newspaper called the Sunday Herald (probably the New York Herald): "The most wonderful game on record... There were 700 people present." Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 23:31, 19 March 2008 (UTC)

Charlie Robertson

Shouldn't some mention be made of the allegations that the Tigers made about Robertson scuffing the ball? According to Jim Buckley's book, Robertson had a reputation for throwing a spitball back when it was still legal, and Ty Cobb always believed that Robertson had been throwing a junk ball. The fact that the Tigers lodged a protest with Ban Johnson is notable, even if Johnson ruled against them. 76.252.29.31 (talk) 18:39, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

"27 up, 27 down"

Could also be 24, no? 96.248.235.84 (talk) 09:06, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

No. It has to be a 9-inning complete game effort. Now, it is possible to have an 8-inning complete game, if you're the only pitcher on the visiting team, and the home team doesn't bat in the 9th. The only way they wouldn't bat in the 9th is if they had the lead going into the top of the 9th and held onto it to win. But if they had the lead, that means they scored at least one run off you, so you could not possibly have pitched a perfect game. You could have pitched a conventional no-hitter and given up one or more runs without a hit occurring (via walks, errors, or whatever). But not a perfect game. For that you would have to pitch 9 full innings (more than that, if your team doesn't score in regulation). 27 outs, at least. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 10:19, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

Yeah, I was thinking of the no bottom of the ninth thing, but as you said, the home team must play in the bottom of the ninth if they have not scored a run. Sorry to not think this through. 96.248.235.84 (talk) 04:04, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

What about this? If the first batter reaches first base and then is put out on a double-play and no other batters reach, that would be "27 up, 27 down", but certainly not a perfect game. --Steven J. Anderson (talk) 00:22, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
Depends on how "3 up, 3 down" is used. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 02:08, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
This is the Ernie-Shore-in-relief-of-Babe-Ruth game, discussed in numerous places. It used to be a footnote on most lists of perfect games, but was pretty much eliminated when MLB proposed a stricter definition of no-hitters etc. WHPratt (talk) 18:28, 20 February 2009 (UTC)WHPratt
No batter can reach first base in a perfect game. The question (from June) would describe a conventional no-hitter, not a perfect game. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 20:34, 20 February 2009 (UTC)

Reaching first base vs. reaching "any" base.

You can't reach second, third, or home until you first reach first base, so the good-faith "any" base reference would be misleading. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 08:07, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

Question

Does a perfect game there is 1 out, a batter gets walked, but then the next one grounds into a double play? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 72.137.17.50 (talk) 16:55, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

No batter can reach first base in a perfect game. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 17:00, 14 July 2008 (UTC)
Is it a perfect game if a batter is tagged out trying to get a double? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 72.137.17.50 (talk) 17:57, 14 July 2008 (UTC)
Read the article. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? 18:08, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

"No-hit batsmen" vs "No hit-batsmen" in a section header

I read "No-hit batsmen" to mean those batsmen who have no hits, and "No hit-batsmen" to mean that no batsmen were hit. In some contexts, English' lack of lots of cases for nouns and adjectives leads to ambiguity. I'm sure Virgil would have had no trouble avoiding this slight confusion, and probably Sophocles too would have found it trivial. I wonder if the history of philosophy would have been much different if baseball had been played in ancient athens. One imagines, perhaps, a Platonic dialogue in which Socrates confounds his auditors by insisting they figure out who's on first before proceeding to more complex issues.

But I digress. If we're going for the no batsmen have been struck by a pitch and so been awarded a base sense, as in this case, I think we should go with "No hit-batsmen". Anybody else with an opinion on how to resolve this ambiguity of English usage? ww (talk) 05:55, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

There is no ambiguity. I'm afraid there's an issue here only because you're unfamiliar with the pertinent idiom. When a batter is hit by a pitch, this event is referred to as a hit batsman. Such an event is one of the three basic ways by which a batter can reach base due to less-than-perfect pitching: (1) a hit, (2) a base on balls, or walk, or (3) a hit by pitch, or hit batsman. A pitcher has done his job flawlessly when he has been responsible for no hits, no walks, and no hit batsmen (yes, yes, and no third-strike wild pitches). Your "read"—that "'No-hit batsmen'...mean[s] those batsmen who have no hits, and 'No hit-batsmen'...mean[s] that no batsmen were hit"—is simply incorrect.—DCGeist (talk) 08:35, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
The section header, "No-hit, no-walk, no–hit batsman games", seems fine as is, although maybe there is some way to re-word it to indicate "Pitching perfection marred by defensive miscues". Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 13:03, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
I do know the idiom and the rules of baseball. My point is purely linguistic and involves the idiom's (or some uses of it) colision with English usage. Perhaps we could dodge the issue by using struck by pitch batters, instead? ww (talk) 09:41, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm afraid the only issues to dodge are the ones you've been creating. "Struck by pitch batters" is not idiomatic English. "Hit batsmen" is. As adjectives preceding a noun, "no-hit batsmen" and "no hit-batsmen" are simply improper English. "No–hit batsmen", on the other hand, is proper English.—DCGeist (talk) 17:32, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
If, by proper English, one means a Saussureian definition, my comments about fluent user's view of peroperness is right on. If, on the other hand, one uses one or another Miss Fidditch edicts about proper, there can be an issue. Though using dueling Fidditches' definitions may make for some entertainment for onlookers.
It may be of interest to recall that much of the prescriptive rules of English are (ill) built by those familiar with Latin or Greek and a conviction that their grammars were good ones to use aa a model to impose on barbaric English. English is odd enough to fit poorly into such rule structures. There's something somewhat anarchic at the heart of English, witness the spelling. ww (talk) 07:27, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
My dear, dear friend, if you wish to convince anyone that your understanding of what constitutes proper English is worth attending to, I suggest you learn how to properly articulate a possessive plural (users', good buddy, not user's), how to spell properly (properness, luv, not peroperness), and how to distinguish between effective and sad, clunky rhetoric ("properness"? really, chum?). And that's just your first sentence.—DCGeist (talk) 07:49, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

<-- DC, Have we met? The "dear, dear, ..." has me wondering if you're someone else I've managed to lose track of... As for spelling, I've had many a talk (indeed even a tirade or ten) with my digits; sadly they remain strongly affected by random events in the vicinity of Vega, or in Andromeda perhaps. I suspect denizens there are vastly amused at the anarchy of English spelling; my digits are certainly oblivious to it. Be at peace, for the typos you were saved from by the little red squiggly lines (despite my increasingly unreliable eyesight which notices only some) were positively Praetorian. As for "properness", irony is indeed an arrow with a high unreliability factor; Cupid would surely be mortified. I suspect the Pentagon folk would be unhappy with its probable error margin in targeting. Especially given their quite distant relation to any degree of what I would regard as English fluency. I apologize that it has missed its mark.

But you've yet to reply in any fashion to the underlying substance of my comments here, in re what constitutes fluency?

You may note that I don't do the 'right thing' with Latin initialisms either, eg, "ie" and re. It's a failing into which I fell long ago, and it drove the Miss Fidditches among my instructors quite mad. I visit them virtually now and then; still foaming at the mouth, poor things. I trust you've read the scene in one of the Nero Wolfe stories in which he himself actually bends down (a knee to the ground!!) and page by page destroys a (then new) 3rd International Unabridged Merriam-Webster in the fireplace because of its treason in regard to prescriptivism? He was appalled at the ghastly evidence the barbarians had won the battle at that formerly respectable, and now corrupted beyond succor, organization. None of my instructors were geniuses, alas, nor did any weigh a 1/6th of a ton (is that correct?), nor did any hail from Black Mountain, but I instantly saw their resemblances to Wolfe on reading that passage. ww (talk) 10:54, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Do tell. The point of that section is to illustrate "almost-perfect" games that were marred only by defensive lapses. Can you think of a different way to say it than "No-hit, no-walk, no–hit batsman games"? How about "Non-perfect games with no hits, no walks and no hit batsmen"? Does that really sound better? Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 11:49, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

The point of that section is to illustrate "almost-perfect" games that were marred only by defensive lapses. And that is why that entire section should be deleted. "Almost-perfect" games marred by defensive lapses do not deserve a section in this article, no more than "almost-perfect games" marred by a hit batsman, catcher's interference, walks, or base hits. The very concept of a perfect game includes defensive perfection, at least in the sense of not letting any runners on base via defensive misplay. Unlike a "no-hitter", which is essentially entirely a pitching accomplishment because defensive miscues are not scored as hits, a perfect game is a TEAM, not an individual, accomplishment. Vidor (talk) 15:50, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Not to mention that it's mostly unsourced. There is no source whatsoever for the earlier games listed in that section, and, further, no source confirming that the list is complete. Vidor (talk) 16:44, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
You've got a point. However, perfect games, as with other no-hitters, are normally listed by pitcher. You don't hear "the Dodgers pitched a perfect game against the Cubs in 1965", it's "Sandy Koufax pitched..." So if the other team got a baserunner through no fault of the pitcher (at least while pitching, as opposed to fielding his position), then the argument is that it's a special case, or at least an interesting case. But whether it belongs is one question, and how the heading should read is a different question. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 17:34, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
As for the heading, it's correct. Although if you wanted to remove a source of confusion you could write "No-HBP". Vidor (talk)
I do wonder, the logic point about errors and perfect games aside, where DOES that information come from? The assertion that X number of would-be perfectos marred by errors have happened, and the specific games not referenced at Retrosheet? Vidor (talk) 19:26, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
I agree that "no-HBP" would fix it. And I've had an epiphany - you're right. The section does not belong. Because it presupposes that without the error, it would have been a perfect game. But there is no basis for such an assumption. If it were an out instead of an error, maybe the pitcher would have pitched differently to the next batter, and the batter might have gotten a base hit. So it's bogus. It's original research. It should go. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 19:53, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
In fact, the only time it is arguably valid is if such an error occurs against the 27th batter. Otherwise, it's a spurious conclusion. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 19:54, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

How long shall we wait to remove it? Vidor (talk) 20:53, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Since you and I and DCGeist are about the only ones editing this page routinely, how about if we hear from him first. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 20:56, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
DCGeist added that section himself, on October 24, 2006: [9] He needs to address the concerns about it. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 21:12, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
Hey. First, let me apologize for getting so snarky with ww. Every time I see Saussureian, I reach for my guillotine.
On the matter of the section in question:
  • It makes no presupposition that without the error(s), the game would have been perfect. It simply represents, as you noted earlier, the "instances when a pitcher performed his (primary) job to perfection over a complete game of at least nine innings", but was not credited with a perfect game. This is a notion that relates closely and significantly to the notion of the perfect game itself, and this seems the appropriate place in which to address it—creating a specific article for this material would constitute an undesirable content fork.
  • I understand there's some concern that the section is OR. While I don't recall the two-and-a-half-years past inspiration for the section, the concept that the no-hit, no-walk, no–hit batsman game is a significant feat and relates to the notion of the perfect game has been established by the sort of sources that meet WP:V. I have included a citation to a 2007 article in the well-established Baseball Digest.—DCGeist (talk) 21:32, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
I think the author of that Baseball Digest piece is making the same mistake that I spoke of. Once an event occurs in a game, it's done, and you can't make any assumptions about what "would have happened" if that event didn't occur. The only time it makes sense is if it's the 27th batter. However, I'll concede that this is kind of in the same category as no-hitters broken up by a hit early in the game. I think Jim Bibby allowed one hit and then shut down his opponents the rest of the way. It's an interesting event, but it's risky to read too much into it. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 21:39, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
Again, I read no assumption about what "would have happened"—I certainly don't make one. You identify a fallacy that every serious student of the game should be familiar with: Similarly, just because the guy on first got picked off, doesn't mean he would have scored on the next batter's home run—if he'd still been on first, the pitcher would have pitched differently, and there might not have been a home run. Absolutely, yes, right. But this category of games derives its significance not from what "would have happened" ("it would have been perfect if not for those durn errors"), but from what did happen—the pitcher pitched a flawless game...but happened not to be credited with a perfect game because of fielding lapses. No supposition about counterfactual scenarios is required to regard them as (a) significant feats and (b) closely related to perfect games.—DCGeist (talk) 21:56, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
You're postulating a third type of no-hitter, somewhere between a conventional no-hitter and a "pure" perfect game, in which the only imperfections were fielding miscues rather than mistakes by the battery. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 22:11, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm happy to see it as a special subcategory of the no-hitter, one that is very similar to the well-known subcategory of the perfect game, and to reaffirm I'm hardly the first or only person to identify it as such. The question is to which primary (encyclopedia article–level) topic does it more closely relate—no-hitter or perfect game? Due to (a) its rarity and (b) the conventional identification of "perfection" with the pitcher's performance, it seems pretty clear to me that it more closely relates to the latter.—DCGeist (talk) 22:24, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
A tough call as to which article it belongs in. A perfect game is defined as "no one gets to first base". A no-hitter is defined as "no one gets a hit". Interestingly enough, as rare as perfect games are, the exceptional case of perfect-except-errors, is even rarer. But extreme situations typically are. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 22:31, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
And speaking of rarities, unrelated to no-hitters as such, but consider the unique statistical situation in connection with Hoyt Wilhelm, and Gus Triandos who caught Wilhelm for 5 years in Baltimore. Do you know what stats I'm talking about? Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 22:35, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
No, I don't. A passed ball thing? I'm a big knuckleball fan.—DCGeist (talk) 22:59, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
It has nothing to do with the knuckleball. It has everything to do with the number 1. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 23:01, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
To use that fine cricket term, I'm stumped.—DCGeist (talk) 23:22, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
Wilhelm had 1 home run in his career, in his first at-bat yet. Gus Triandos had 1 stolen base in his career, not in his first game, but in his first (and last) ever attempted steal. 1 attempt, 1 steal. Career perfection. :) P.S. He also caught a perfect game, not from Wilhelm, but from Jim Bunning. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 23:57, 22 April 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, but he did that against my Mets, making it perfect but damnable. (Great stats!)—DCGeist (talk) 00:17, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
If you've ever heard Lindsey Nelson's call of that game, and the crowd's reaction, you'd have thought it was the Mets pitching the perfecto. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 00:21, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
Here's a columnist I found at random who confirms how the Shea crowd was cheering Bunning as he pitched the ninth. [10] Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 00:25, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

closely related to perfect games They are no more "closely related to perfect games" than games ended by a walk, a hit batsman, catcher's interference, or base hits. Vidor (talk) 03:16, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

Following your logic, no-hitters and perfect games are barely related at all. That's an interesting perspective.—DCGeist (talk) 03:31, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
I do not know where you pulled that from. Certainly not from me. I will try to summarize very briefly: a perfect game can be ruined in, as far as I can count, six different ways--walking a batter, hitting a batter with a pitch, the catcher interfering with a batter, an obstruction call being made on the defense as the batter-runner advances to first base, a batter reaching first base due to a fielding error, or a base hit. There is no justification to have an entire section devoted to just one of those six ways. Vidor (talk) 19:51, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
It's separating defensive mistakes from what could be called "battery mistakes", i.e mistakes made in the pitching-and-catching process. Clearly, fielding errors and obstruction would be defensive mistakes, and hits, walks and HBP would be battery mistakes. Catcher's interference is on the borderline, which may be why it's a separate stat. So would it be included in the list? I don't know, DCGeist would have to answser that. And there's another one you didn't mention - wild pitch and passed ball: batter swings and misses strike three, ball gets away from catcher, batter takes first base safely. Where does that fit? I would call it a "battery mistake", as with hit, walk and HBP. Again, DCGeist would need to comment. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 20:01, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
First, in response to the issues you raise, Bugs. I'd say a third-strike wild pitch is as much a pitching flaw as a hit, walk, or hit batsman, so a game that was otherwise perfect except for such an event wouldn't be comparable to this category. Catcher's interference and third-strike passed balls are truly borderline cases (if put to it, I would calll them defensive lapses). However, in the entire history of major league (and, I warrant, professional) baseball, no otherwise perfect game has been affected by one of these events, so I don't know if there's really a need to grapple with them. If such a remarkable game ever does take place, we can see then how reliable sources describe it.
And so to Vidor's basic issue. I appreciate that you believe this section essentially constitutes trivia within the context of an article on the perfect game. I empathize, insofar as I'm no particular fan of encyclopedizing (that's 4U, ww, wherever you are) trivia. But I don't believe this constitutes trivia at all, and I believe the sources back me up. In fact, I think it's important to cover it here, because it is recognized externally as a distinctive achievement and a close relation of the perfect game, and Wikipedia is just the place to get the record of it right.
I've adduced the Baseball Digest list. Now, here's an extended quote from the source I've provided for the Johnson game--the book The Washington Senators, 1901-1971, written by Tom Deveaux and published by McFarland (p. 53):
The 13-year vet struck out ten and only five balls were hit beyond the infield. There were no walks, but it was not a perfect game. In the seventh, Bucky Harris missed what was by all accounts a soft grounder off the bat of future Hall of Famer Harry Hooper, who led off the inning for the Red Sox. Had that not happened, Johnson would have pitched the third perfect game in modern baseball history (since 1901) up to that time.
(Yes, he does indulge in the fallacy that Bugs has identified, nonetheless...) Our source here apparently finds Johnson's performance closely related enough to a perfect game to reference the latter concept not once but twice in the span of three sentences. Both of the sources I've now cited for the McCahan game--Deveaux and Mike Robbins (Ninety Feet From Fame, published by Carroll & Graf)--raise the specter of the perfect game in their respective coverage. So does the book cited for the Mathewson game. So does the article cited for the Rucker game. So does the book cited for the Bosman game. So does the book cited for the Reuss game. So does the book cited for the Mulholland game.
Since 1893, there have been 233 major league no-hitters. Fifteen have been perfect games. Seven have been no-hit, no-walk, no–hit batsman games with one or more fielding errors. Every one of those seven is described, in high-quality historical sources, in relation to the perfect game. Our sources clearly indicate that they stand out in a particular and definable way from the other 211 no-hitters as a group, and that particular way is how the pitcher's flawless pitching performance makes them closely related to the perfect game.—DCGeist (talk) 21:50, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
This brings up an interesting dilemma - when reliable, published sources "get it wrong" - specifically, in saying "if it hadn't been for that error..." because it presupposes that the pitching perfection would have continued. It's really only valid when it's the 27th man. The Milt Pappas no-hitter in 1972 is the perfect (!) example. It is totally fair to say that if that final pitch were called strike 3 instead of ball 4, it would have been a perfect game... obviously! But if Jim Bibby had gotten that first batter out instead of giving up a base hit, would he have thrown a perfecto? No way to know. If Bob Hendley had not given up that 1 meaningless single to Lou Johnson in 1965, would he have had a no-hitter the same night that Koufax got his perfecto? No way to know. All we know is that those hits occurred and the pitchers got one-hitters. In the 7 cases under discussion here, it's a really tough call - just like Babe Pinelli's strike 3 on a borderline pitch to give Larsen his perfect game, or Bruce Froemming's ball 4 on a borderline pitch to deprive Pappas of his. Either way, it's not entirely satisfactory. The sources are reliable for the facts of the cases - but when they engage in speculation about what "would have happened", they are getting into the crystal ball area. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 22:10, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
Again, per the discussion yesterday, the distinction of the event does not rely on the "what would have happened" supposition. Some of the sources fall into that--perhaps as much the result of imprecise semantics as actual belief in the fallacy--but others do not. What is true is that all of the games are seen as particularly similar to perfect games, in a way that the vast majority of no-hitters, as a group, are not.—DCGeist (talk) 22:21, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
Maybe the heading is a little too specific. I'm thinking maybe, "Pitching perfection, defensive imperfection", or something like that. Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots 22:25, 23 April 2009 (UTC)
That seems fine to me.—DCGeist (talk) 17:56, 24 April 2009 (UTC)
Fascinating discussion. My feeling is that, in the interests of completeness, near misses of varying degrees ought to be listed somewhere. When a new fan or a non-fan encounters the concept of a Perfect Game, he (or she) might turn here for enlightenment, thinking "I wonder if it's still perfect if a runner gets on but is erased," or "Surely they wouldn't 'take away' somebody's perfect game just due to a teammate's error." Here the reader should be informed that, no, those aren't perfect games, but if the definition were slightly different, here are cases that would qualify. By ruling out these cases and explaining the reasoning, we sharpen the definition. WHPratt (talk) 13:09, 5 June 2009 (UTC)