Remember those Canonical Batting Lines?

A few months ago I embarked upon a rather ambitious bit of research, to catalog all the different batting lines (AB-R-H-RBI) in MLB history.  It was a lot of work, going through each combination in the Baseball Reference Play Index, and noting which player(s) had the most occurrences of each line.  By the time I got into the “3 at-bats” group, it became obvious to me that this wasn’t going to be done by the end of this season, so I put it aside, while brainstorming how to streamline the process.

Well, longtime SABR and Retrosheet member Tom Ruane is a programmer by day, and using a program written in C++, basically compiled the entire list (and then some).  He was primarily focused on “unique batting lines,” the ones that have occurred only once.  But, his raw data, the “Holy Grail” of this research, and the part that most closely mirrors what I was seeking to do, can be found here.

I guess I should learn some C++. 🙂

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