Sports Reference Blog

Archive for the 'General' Category

FBref Adds Various Improvements

6th November 2020

Over the past few weeks, we have added a number of exciting improvements to FBref, many of which were requested by our users.

Pass Length Categories

We have adjusted the three categories for pass lengths.
Old Categories
Short: 0-5 yards
Medium: 5-25 yards
Long: 25+ yards

New Categories
Short: 5-15 yards
Medium: 15-30 yards
Long: 30+ yards

The issue previously was that the short category was including many passes that were blocked or deflected and therefore traveled fewer than 5 yards. This resulted in low completion totals for "short" passes, which is counterintuitive. To fix this, we are excluding passes traveling fewer than 5 yards in these categories. Now we see "short" passes as the most likely to be completed.

Defensive Actions included in Goal/Shot Creating Actions

We introduced the Shot and Goal Creating Actions metric earlier this year. This stat captures which events ultimately led to a shot or a goal. Previously, these actions were limited to the offensive side, such as Passes, Dribbles, and Fouls Drawn. We are now including defensive actions that lead to a shot or goal, such as Interceptions and Tackles.

Precise Ages on Current Season pages

For winter competitions, we list players' ages on August 1st of that season, to represent their age at the beginning of the competition. Likewise, we list ages on February 1st for Summer competitions. This works well for previous seasons, but it can be an issue for current seasons when players have a birthday during the competition. To fix this, we are now displaying precise ages on current season pages. These ages are in the YY-DDD format. For example, 27-123 indicates that the player is 27 years and 123 days old.

Ages on Match Reports

We have also added player ages to our match reports. These are the players' ages on the date of the match, listed in YY-DDD format.

Average Squad Age

Also regarding player ages, we have added each team's average age to the squad stats tables. These ages are weighted by minutes played.

Completed Matches

We have added Completed Matches to our Playing Time table. These are matches in which a player was in the starting XI and played the full match (eg was not subbed or sent off).

Average Shot Distance

Our Shooting tables offer a lot of detail about a player's shooting record. We have included the average distance from the goal of their shots. Note that this stat does not include penalty kicks and is listed in yards.

Opponent's Stats

Finally, we are now including opponent's stats on our squad stats tables. These are toggleable by clicking on the "Opponents Stats" buttons above each table. These stats show how opponents performed against a particular squad.

Opponent's stats are also included in squad pages, below player totals. This provides an easy way to compare a team's "For" and "Against" stats in each category.

Posted in Announcement, FBref, General | No Comments »

Sports Reference Adds Two

3rd November 2020

I'm pleased to announce that Charlotte Eisenberg and Adam Darowski have joined Sports Reference in full-time roles.

Charlotte is joining us as a Data Developer working on baseball, basketball and hockey. She was an intern with Sports Reference previously and also spent a year with the Texas Rangers front office.

Adam is our new Head of User Experience. He has been a long-time consultant for Sports Reference and is responsible for the responsive redesign we undertook in 2016-17 and the design of our new Stathead service. You can follow him on twitter @baseballtwit.

In another move, Jaclyn Mahoney has been promoted from Data Developer and will now manage our Business Intelligence efforts.

About Sports Reference.

Posted in Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, Basketball-Reference.com, CBB at Sports Reference, CFB at Sports Reference, expire21d, General, Hockey-Reference.com, Stathead | No Comments »

Sports Reference LLC Acquires The Baseball Gauge

27th August 2020

Sports Reference LLC has acquired the Baseball Gauge from owner Dan Hirsch. Dan was hired as a developer by Sports Reference in 2018 and has spearheaded our work on fbref.com. This week, Dan migrated The Game-Changer from the Baseball Gauge to a new home on Baseball-Reference.com. Work is continuing on the migration of additional features like Championship Probability Added and Championship Leverage Index.

Following the re-launch of these features on Baseball-Reference.com, The Baseball Gauge will be shut down. You can follow Dan on Twitter.

Posted in Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, General, Statgeekery | 2 Comments »

Box Scores Since 1904 & Play-by-Play Since 1918 Now on Baseball Reference

20th February 2020

Thanks to the efforts of our friends at Retrosheet, we have added box scores back to the 1904 season to Baseball Reference. Previously, our game log coverage was back to 1908. Additionally, we have added partial play-by-play coverage for games games as far back as 1918. Previously, our oldest play-by-plays were from 1925. Since our last major Retrosheet update, the final two missing full play-by-plays of 1973 were added which means we now have complete PBP data back to that season now. In addition to the boxes and PBPs themselves, this update allows for a variety of new information searchable in the play index, as well as new rows of information in team/player/league statistics tables.

Here are some examples of the new information/searches available on the site.

If you have any questions about our data coverage, you can always see it here.

We're very excited about these new additions and hope you enjoy them, as well. Please let us know if you have any comments, questions or concerns.

And thanks again to Retrosheet!

Posted in Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, Data, Features, General, History, Play Index | 7 Comments »

Introducing the PFR HOF Monitor

19th December 2019

Baseball-Reference tracks various Hall of Fame predictor statistics such as Bill James' Hall of Fame Monitor and Jay Jaffe's WAR Score System. Basketball Reference also has a Hall of Fame Probability formula that we display on player pages and gives people a brief glance at where players stand based on their statistical case.

With the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2020 being debated this winter, we figured it was time to work up a Hall of Fame predicting formula for the NFL. We have devised a new HOF Monitor metric that we are deploying for Pro Football Reference beginning today! Here's a link to the quarterback HOF Monitor page, which also includes links to the other positions. Links to these tables will also appear under the Leaderboards and Awards section of player pages.

The base formula uses weighted Approximate Value (which is 100% of the player's peak year, 95% of their second-best year, 90% of their third-best, and so on) as a starting point. Bonuses are added for Pro Football Hall of Fame All-Decade selections, MVP awards, Defensive Player of the Year awards, first-team AP All-Pro selections, Super Bowls/titles, and Pro Bowls, in descending weights.

In addition, bonuses are added if a player has earned first-team All-Pro in over 33% of their seasons. This reflects the reputation boost afforded to players who led the league in short careers like Gale Sayers and Terrell Davis. For players not yet inducted, small bonuses are also added for semi-finalist and finalist appearances on previous HOF ballots, since that indicates that they've already been seriously considered.

On top of the base formula, there are statistical bonuses given depending on the position. For quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends there are different thresholds depending on the era they played in so as to narrow the gap between the depressed passing stats before 1980 and the explosion after that. For the full methodology, check out our PFR HOF Monitor explainer page here.

Similar to JAWS, a score of 100 is around the average modern-era HOF inductee for each position. All eligible players with a score over 120 got into the Hall of Fame fairly quickly, save for a few exceptions such as Willie Wood. A score of 150 would be a first ballot lock (sole exception of Alan Page who had to wait a year).

A score of 80 or above means they're a good candidate to eventually get in, or they’re the highest-profile borderline candidates. The absolute lowest score for HOF inductees would be 40, although most of these lower scoring Hall of Famers are courtesy of senior committee selections.

To get a sense of what absolute HOF locks look like in this system, here's a look at the highest HOFm scores:

Player Pos HOFm
Jerry Rice WR 311.81
Peyton Manning QB 258.00
Reggie White DE 238.23
Tom Brady QB 225.94
Lawrence Taylor OLB 215.68
Walter Payton RB 214.91
Bruce Smith DE 211.35
Ray Lewis ILB 197.85
Tony Gonzalez TE 196.33
Jim Brown RB 190.29

As for the Centennial Class of 2020, here's how the HOF Monitor judged the modern-era semifinalists on the ballot, with this year's inductees marked with an asterisk:

Player Pos HOFm
Alan Faneca G 141.93
Steve Hutchinson* G 118.53
Zach Thomas ILB 112.20
Reggie Wayne WR 107.01
Torry Holt WR 104.27
Isaac Bruce* WR 99.81
Edgerrin James* RB 99.58
Richard Seymour DE 96.65
Troy Polamalu* DB 95.73
Patrick Willis ILB 89.60
Leroy Butler DB 89.28
Steve Atwater* DB 85.13
Tony Boselli T 84.83
Ronde Barber DB 83.58
Hines Ward WR 72.90
John Lynch DB 71.30
Bryant Young DT 65.43
Ricky Watters RB 64.77
Darren Woodson DB 60.53
Sam Mills ILB 57.33
Simeon Rice DE 53.35
Clay Matthews OLB 52.30
Fred Taylor RB 52.13
Carl Banks OLB 51.50
Steve Tasker WR/ST 14.88

We want to stress that this is especially meant to judge a player's chances of getting into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and not necessarily for "who is the best middle linebacker" debates. Many analysts agree that championships won reveal little to nothing about a player's individual skill, but it's certainly a factor that's taken into consideration by Hall of Fame voters. With that caveat out of the way, we're eager to hear feedback on the formula. Particularly, if you're interested in testing out your own tweaks, feel free to reach out to us via our feedback form and we can share the player data used to test out this system.

Posted in Announcement, Awards, Features, General, Hall of Fame, History, Pro-Football-Reference.com | 24 Comments »

Row Isolation Added to Sports-Reference Sites

16th October 2019

Sports-Reference has added a feature to tables that will make it a lot easier to compare teams and players in an easily scannable fashion. Now, when you select a row on a table, a popup will appear with a button: "Show Only Selected Rows". Highlight the rows you want to isolate, and once you're ready, click the button. The site will then fade out the unselected rows so the only rows displayed are the ones you highlighted. If you want to return to viewing the full table, just click on the "Show All Rows" button.

This feature applies to any tables that don't have row summing capabilities. This will work on both desktop and mobile. You can see a video of the feature in action at Baseball-Reference's Twitter account. You can contact us through our feedback form if you have any questions or suggestions.

Posted in Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, Basketball-Reference.com, CBB at Sports Reference, CFB at Sports Reference, FBref, Features, General, Hockey-Reference.com, Pro-Football-Reference.com, Tips and Tricks | 2 Comments »

FBref.com Adds Comprehensive Women’s World Cup and Women’s Club Data

11th April 2019

We are pleased to release what we believe is one of the most complete sources for women's soccer data on the internet.

Women's World Cup

FBref now has pages for every player and team in Women's World Cup history. From the 1991 World Cup in China to the 2015 World Cup in Canada.

Every player from Carli Lloyd to Homare Sawa to Marta has complete World Cup results.

This work was done in partnership with the Grinnell College Data Analysis and Social Inquiry Lab (thank you especially to LaAnna Farnelli, Jarren Santos, Katherine Walden, and Dr. Xavi Escandell) and soccer researcher Aaron Nielsen. Thanks also to members of our staff who helped with this project: Jaclyn Mahoney, Jay Hutchinson, Alex Bonilla, and Dan Hirsch.

As part of this initial foray into international football data, we also have 2016 Olympic Women's Soccer results.

Women's Club Soccer

Our coverage of women's soccer does not start and stop just with the Women's World Cup every four years. We are covering women's soccer for the other three years and eleven months as well. We intend to be your first choice for women's club data, so we are also launching extensive club data for over 20 league seasons. Partnering with our data provider, Data Sports Group, we have added coverage for eight national women's leagues along with data for up to three seasons. These leagues are:

We also have statistics for the last three seasons of the UEFA Women's Champions League.

Daily Updates and Match Reports

The best part is that we'll be updating club and World Cup results on a daily basis during the World Cup, and also every day of the club season. We want you to rely on us for your women's football needs.

In the next three to four weeks, we will also be launching our match reports, fixture lists, and much more across all of the leagues and competitions we cover.

World Cup Newsletter

Beginning this spring, our Stathead News arm will publish a daily newsletter leading up to and during the Women's World Cup. We'll include the schedules, match results, and interesting news and tidbits relating to each day's matches. Sign up now and don't miss an issue. No obligation and we promise it is easy to unsubscribe.

Using our Data

If you are a writer, blogger, or podcaster, we would love to talk with you about ways you might use our data in stories, visualizations or reporting around this summer's matches in France. Also feel free to let us know if you have questions, comments, suggestions, or find errors or issues with the site. We promise to get better every day and your feedback helps immensely with that.

Promoting Your Work

Also, you can promote your writing on our site for free using our Linker program. With one click of a bookmarklet you add to your browser, the first incidence of a player name will be linked to her page on FBref.com. If you alert us that you intend to use the linker, we will monitor your RSS feed daily, and we will then link back to your article from the player's page driving traffic to your site.

Do You Have Data?

We would love to talk with you about ways we might incorporate your data into our site. Our goal is to become a public repository of all things world football. It's a big world out there, so help is always appreciated. We take the public and freely available presentation of data very seriously.

Languages

Our site is not just available in English. We also have versions in:

We look forward to supporting and following women's soccer with you, and we hope you visit us often to check in on your favorite athletes and teams.

Posted in Announcement, FBref, Features, General, History | 1 Comment »

Web Developer Job at Sports Reference | Sports-Reference.com

5th June 2018

We are Hiring! Please see our job ad. Web Developer Job at Sports Reference | Sports-Reference.com

Posted in Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, Basketball-Reference.com, Bleg, CBB at Sports Reference, CFB at Sports Reference, expire21d, FBref, Features, General, Hockey-Reference.com, Statgeekery | 1 Comment »

We Don’t Have an App, But Here’s How to Get One Anyway

20th November 2017

On Twitter, I've noticed one question come up over and over again:

Read the rest of this entry

Posted in Features, General, How-To Videos | 2 Comments »

Baseball-Reference Minor League Data Updates and Corrections

1st November 2016

Our historical performance data for professional leagues (affiliated minor leagues, independent minor leagues, fall/winter leagues, and other international leagues) is provided by and licensed from 24-7 Baseball and Chadwick Baseball Bureau. It incorporates the work of many stalwart baseball researchers, including Cliff Blau, Art Cantu, Frank Hamilton, Reed Howard, Kevin Johnson, Bob McConnell, Jack Morris, and Ray Nemec, as well as members of the Minor Leagues Committee of the Society for American Baseball Research. Perhaps most importantly, it builds upon the seminal work of Ed Washuta, who magnanimously provided the framework to make the whole thing possible.

As licensors of this data, Sports Reference LLC is not in a position to update and make corrections to the dataset ourselves. All proposed corrections are passed along to the Chadwick Baseball Bureau. Their focus is on making corrections for post-1960 data first and then pre-1960 data as time permits. This is largely due to the sheer scope of the project, but also for economic reasons. The economic value to us for information such as the 1929 California State League is minimal and likewise the market for licensing such data is effectively zero. We wish to have the most accurate datasets we can, but must operate within the economic constraints of what the market will bear.

We realize that this may mean that certain issues and errors may linger on the site for months or even years and apologize for all such errors.

You can use the Chadwick Bureau website to send corrections or changes to the data.

Posted in Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, Data, General, Stat Questions | 9 Comments »