A vast repository of scouting reports

Ed Zurga

I looked for Hunter Pence. None of his old scouting reports were available. Conspiracy? Almost certainly. But the rest of the stuff in the database made up for it.

This has been making the rounds on the Internet today, and while it was tempting to do a one-off catchall post on it, I think this is just the start of a regular, beautiful, pointless feature for the slow days. Behold: a vast repository of scouting reports, courtesy of the Baseball Hall of Fame. The server's been a bit wonky because of the publicity today, but it's still an amazing time sink.

Before you ask, they do have one for Willie Mays. Unfortunately, they're from the late '60s, not when he was a gestating baseball god. But because I'm a sick man, I didn't think to search for Mays until I was an hour in. The scouting report on Mays? He was good. The real interesting stuff comes with stuff like this:

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via scouts.baseballhall.org

That's a scouting report of John Patterson written by current Rays manager Joe Maddon. I can't express how much I love this. I literally can't, because I have no idea why I love this. But if I were to pick one report to frame and put on my desk ... I'm not saying this is the one, but it would receive strong consideration.

Others of note include William Vanlandingham:

GOOD BODY, ARM & STUFF GIVE HIM A CHANCE. TOOLS TO WORK WITH, BUT HAS A LONG WAY TO GO. DEDUCTED PTS FOR LACK OF CONFIDENCE AND CONTROL

Nailed it. There were several on Dante Powell, but this one was my favorite for obvious reasons:

GOOD ATHLETE'S BODY. SLIGHT BUILD. BUBBLE REAR WITH STRONG THIGHS AND HIGH WAIST.

BUBBLE REAR. Here's one about John Burkett:

A little short. Can't help.

And a funny one on Bill Mueller:

LITTLE GUY. DONT SHOW THE DESIRE YOU LIKE TO SEE, HAS TOOLS, SPEED AND ARM

... and the last one I'll bore you with is Rod Beck, may he rest in peace:

Everything was hard. Did not see any off speed pitches. Heavy around the middle - might have a weight problem later on.

This is baseball crack, and I can't get any work done. One more! George Foster when he was a Giants prospect in the Cal League:

Center Fielder. Plus arm and plus outfielder. Didn't impress much with the bat. Only 4.3 runner, and didn't show any aggressiveness on the bases. Suppose to have had back trouble two different times in past two years. If his hitting picks up he might have a chance.

WAIT WHAT ABOUT SHAWN ESTES???

GD ARM THAT WILL GET BETTER. YOUNG LHP WHO HAS A CHANCE TO BE 4 OR 5 STARTER IN ML OR POSSIBLY A SETUP MAN. WILL HAVE 3 AVE TO AA PITCHES THAT CAN GETS PEOPLE OUT. AGG AND GOES AFTER PEOPLE.

Yes, when I think about Estes as a pitcher, I think about how he just came right at the hitters.

This is just the tip of the scoutberg. I can't fathom how many different names I'm going to put into that barely working database. Oh, man, this is horrible. This is so horrible. This is so great.

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