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The TBC Newsletter will keep you periodically up-to-date on what is happening at The Baseball Cube.
UDFA Sign Dates
Added 1477 signing dates for UDFA free agents over the last 20 years. Also added 78 more UDFA signing bonuses bringing the total to 13497 bonuses in the Draft database with 3078 for Undrafted Free Agent Signings (UDFA). Most of the new signing dates are for International players.

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UDFA Signings Data Injection + More Bonuses
Though TBC prides itself on having the full history of the Major League draft, the UDFA signing data has been mediocre at best. When researching players, users often have interest on when/how a player was initially drafted/signed and if the player was drafted, then the user went home happy. If the player was an International signing or a college free agent, the user was often left unsatisfied.

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2021 College Summer League Stats
The College Summer League stats for 2021 have been added to the site and is now available in the Summer League Data Product as well. This year, there are 262 teams added for 26 different leagues. New leagues include the Sunset League and the 2 new MLB partner leagues: The Appalachian League and the MLB Draft League. Most players are currently attending college as underclassmen while a smaller proportion are incoming College Freshmen. Not all players are bridged to a TBC ID# and therefore, when viewing the stats, not all players will be linked to a TBC page. They are only linked if they already had a profile.

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2021 College Stats (non-D1) and Dwight, Michael and Jim get a desk
One of the bigger projects each year is the compilation of the 2021 non-D1 college stats. This includes NCAA Divisions 2 and 3 as well as the NAIA for 4-year schools. For 2-year Junior Colleges, we capture the NJCAA, CCCAA and NWAC leagues. For all teams, we have included all player stats but only player pages for those who already had a page on our site. This could be due to being on a D1 team at one point or being drafted. For each school, we include team record, head coach and ballpark (if available). The addition of the 2021 stats means we now have full stats (virtually) since 2017 for all college levels.

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Tommy John had Tommy John surgery
I recently finished my Tommy John surgery research and found myself chronologically at the earliest documented surgery. Tommy John, the player, came up as the final (or first) record and as I entered the comment into his transactions history, I questioned to myself whether I could actually write, logically, that Tommy John had Tommy John surgery ... but I did anyways.

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Salaries, Payroll and My Laptop Power Cord is a Snake
2021 player salaries have been added as have opening day payrolls for MLB Organizations for 2021. This is normally added in April since most salaries are available prior to the season. Any subsequent callup is normally earning minimum baseball wage or close to it. I will blame COVID-19 for my tardiness. Seems like a viable scapegoat though entirely untrue.

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Draft Signing Bonuses and Team Canada injures my Daughter
The signing deadline has come and gone and Kumar Rocker is in baseball limbo. The baseball world is appalled that he does not have the right to sign with another team. Some argue that its important to maintain the integrity of the draft and limit the players to sign with their drafting teams so if players aren't happy where they are drafted, they can't bypass directly to free agency, thus making the rich richer again. However, in Rocker's case, many say that it was the Mets decision not to sign him. I don't know where I stand on this issue. I'm not always on the side of the players like a lot of baseball pundits.

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2021 D1 College Stats and the Chair has an Ice Pack
Though TBC tried to update College stats for as many D1 conferences as possible throughout the College season, we can now safely announce that stats for all competing teams in 2021 are available on the site and in data products. The College Stats package includes Uniform Numbers and Player Class though for the latter, with the additional season of eligibility added, its not always clear team-by-team how they have listed their class.

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2021 Draft Added and my SUV has a pointy hat
Congratulations to Louisville catcher Henry Davis on his sprint to #1 on the final lap of the MLB Draft. Jack Leiter and Kumar (pronounced koo-maar) Rocker went head-to-head until Leiter threw a no-no and a half. And then as Leiter took the lead, the High School shortstops made their move and the next thing you know, Davis is #1, Leiter gets #2 and Rocker drops to #10. The full 2021 draft has been added to TBC with player profiles for all players. Signing and bonus information will start appearing soon.

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Minor League Stats and Vaccinated Cube
Most of you are American so most of you are already vaccinated against COVID-19. In Canada, in Quebec, we are far behind. We don't manufacture the Vaccine. We have to buy it. We are behind the US and Europe. Quebec has recently started vaccinating the general population while the rest of Canada is still working on Seniors. You are most likely American and you should be thankful every day that you are.

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TBC Player TRACKER, Emails and Killer Squirrels
As the Minor League season approaches and many prospect-hungry fans rejoice while they work-from-home for the 517th straight day, it is time to sign up for the TBC PLAYER TRACKER. What is it you ask? Well, I can tell you that its an essential part of being a baseball fan. It is a way for you to track player stats for only those of interest to you. No more navigating to 200 different pages to see stats for your players. The TRACKER will show you all of your (up-to) 200 players' season and incremental daily stats. (How they did yesterday). The TRACKER (always all-caps my man) lets you sort and filter your players. You can even view stats by last 7/14/21/30 days. And you can change your players at any time. There is even a list of recent player movement for your dudes.

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PREMIUM + TRACKER and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups
Together at last, the PREMIUM service (Chocolate) and the TRACKER service (Peanut Butter) have collided and are now in 1 yummy product. The Tracker, in email format for many years has been merged with the PREMIUM Service. The emails are gone (though I can revive it for a fee for those still interested) but instead, you are now provided with 200 players and the ability to view the stats online whenever you want. I know I'm sugar-coating it (pun intended) beacase many of you liked the emails but to be 100% transparent, it wasn't working for ME. I know, I know. Its not about me, its about the customer. But hear me out. It was way too difficult for me to support. Emails would fail. Returned from destination server, blocked by my own. Invalid email addresses. Complaints of partial emails. I know, I know, you provide a service, you need to support it. And I did. I tried. I had to manually send out many of the emails each morning. It was time consuming (sad emoji). So the decision was made to scrap the emails and move the tracking to the site (happy emoji).

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Partnership with College Baseball Foundation
The Baseball Cube is proud to announce a partnership with the College Baseball Foundation (CBF). CBF's purpose is to preserve and recognize the history of College Baseball, which works perfectly with TBC's plan to rebuild the recent history (1965-present) of College Baseball Stats for D1 schools.

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2021 Spring Stats
Did you know that Josh Rojas of the Diamondbacks had the most spring training plate appearances in 2021 with 79?

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Prospects Updated
February and March are baseball prospect season! Leading rankings sites such as Baseball America and MLB Pipeline provide their rankings for teams, organizations and a more generalized MLB ranking list. Its essentially a gift to baseball fans who are mostly unable to evaluate player talent for minor leaguers. Scouting and evaluation is a difficult task and requires aggregation of information to get a full picture. BA and Pipeline are well-connected to industry scouts and so can come up with lists based on their handling of this information.

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2021 D1 Rosters/Bios Updated
One of those long daunting projects each Fall/Winter that takes a lot of discipline to get through. The College Roster project includes not only adding a player profile for all new D1 players for the new college season but also includes bio information and links to existing college or high school stats in our database to build as complete of a history as possible for incoming D1 players, whether Freshmen, JUCO Transfers or transfers from D2/D3/NAIA.

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Tracker Update + HCBOW
First of all, Happy College Baseball Opening Weekend (HCBOW)! An exciting time for those of us who like the College game and haven't see any action for a year.

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TBC Player Tracker Suspended
For various reasons ... that I will get into in a later post. The Tracker will return in a different form for all PREMIUM subscribers.

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Pointing Towards Something
Its easy to get off-track. Especially for me. The Baseball Cube is a labor of love. Its an albatross in my life. I love it. But its heavy. For a while, it was on the zeitgeist but with the evolution of "analytics", the site has been tossed to the side into the less "cool" of the genre of baseball sites. Why did I miss the boat on analytics? To start, I didn't have the bandwidth to understand. I was more concerned with beefing up the historical data. Quantity. Length instead of width. WAR is great but how can I compete with BR or Fangraphs or Baseball Savant. Next-level analytics. Meh. I lost my way. I started off on the cutting edge simply because I was providing a view of data on the web that nobody else had. Over time, analytics took over and The Baseball Cube faded into a secondary niche site with various datasets that people needed. But not the masses. Just a few hundred (Thousand?) people here and there. And that's fine. How does 1 person compete with the multi-employee companies (BR) and the corporations (MLB/ESPN). Well, I don't. They can have their zeitgeist. I'm going longitudinal. And I'll work harder than them, pound for pound, then any of them.

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Player Salaries Updated
Completed a touch-up project to fill in some missing salaries over the last 15 years. There were many records for players without a salary listed and so we researched and filled them in. This includes call-ups for 2019-2020 who never had their salary included. Most of the injected players had league minimum but not all. I also revised the League/Team ranks to be more accurate. If tied, players receive the same rank as opposed to the prior method. Also, players with minimum salary are not ranked for either the league or the team. Some salaries were corrected but mostly for players who had an entry level contract higher than the minimum. Many Japanese or Cuban players join MLB with a higher salary while some draft picks sign an entry level Major League contract as well.

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