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January 17, 2012

BP Unfiltered

Visualizing Our Jack Morris Fixation

by Ben Lindbergh

Maybe you mark you mark it on your calendar. Maybe you feel it in your bones. Maybe, after all these years, it still creeps up on you when you least suspect it, one vitriolic article at a time. I'm talking about a tradition that's as much a part of winter as singing carols and being cold: googling Jack Morris.

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Each fall, birds fly south to stay warm. Salmon return to their natal streams to spawn. And a few short months later, anyone who cares about baseball and has an internet connection googles Jack Morris.* All of this has happened before, and it will all happen again.

*Also, once every few years, Justin Verlander throws a no-hitter for the Tigers, which is newsworthy solely because Jack Morris once did it.

Every search for "Jack Morris" performed thus far has confirmed that Jack Morris continues not to be in the Hall of Fame—to the relief of some and the chagrin of others—and that his career statistics haven't changed since he retired. But that doesn't mean we can let down our guards. Perhaps it's precisely because we keep googling Jack Morris that those things remain true. In which case, I say keep googling, my friends—not just Jack, nor just Morris, nor even Mustached workhorses who most definitely pitched to the score, but both Jack and Morris together, perhaps even surrounded by quotation marks if you want to be all Boolean about it. And if one day you make your way back to this post by googling Jack Morris, you'll know you've done your job.

Ben Lindbergh is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Ben's other articles. You can contact Ben by clicking here

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