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Articles Tagged Bobby Tolan 

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Which players have had the best batting stances in baseball?

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Umpires shouldn't settle for "close enough" when it comes to perfection.

The Weekend Takeaway
Did he go? That was the question percolating through every baseball fan’s mind after the White Sox’ Philip Humber threw the 21st perfect game in major-league history against the Mariners on Saturday afternoon.

Brendan Ryan, who pinch-hit for Munenori Kawasaki, worked the count full, fouled off Humber’s first payoff pitch, and then either swung or did not swing at a slider that broke well off the plate outside. But did he go?

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Where does the dearly departed Escobar rank among the shortstops Bobby Cox has employed in 30 seasons as a manager?

In Bill James’ underappreciated book The Bill James Guide to Managers, James lists “All-Star Teams” for several of the great managers, choosing the best single-season performances the manager got at each position. This approach led to surprises, a subjective approach notwithstanding. Did Casey Stengel never have a better first baseman than Sam Leslie in 1934? Was Bobby Tolan really a better center fielder for Sparky Anderson than Chet Lemon? Al Bumbry ’80 for Earl Weaver’s center field instead of Paul Blair ’69?

It is premature to compile Bobby Cox’s all-time all-star team given that his players have through the end of the season to jump onto the list before the 69-year-old is expected to wrap up his Hall of Famer career. Despite this, I was inspired by the trade of Yunel Escobar to try to compile a list covering the manager’s 30-year career. The question I wanted to answer: did the Braves just trade the best single-season shortstop of Cox’s career? Escobar’s .299/.377/.436 and 14 home runs of last season would seem to be a strong year by a shortstop for a man who never managed any of the era’s Hall of Fame shortstops.

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Before getting into this week's column, I would like to make a pair of comments regarding last week's feature on the amazing Ichiro Suzuki:

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