This upcoming season is somewhat of a monumental season for me; that’s because it, somehow, represents the tenth season of Royals baseball I’ve covered at Royals Review. Along these ten years, I’ve written many, many, many articles about the Royals and about baseball, but I have not done so alone. Rather, I’ve done so with the help of some of the best baseball websites on the internet.
I usually take it for granted that these sites exist, but I didn’t always know about many of them. Someone had to tell me about them. Chances are pretty good that if you’re reading this, you probably have visited a baseball website or two.
But for those of you who haven’t explored much of the baseball corner of the internet may not know where to start, I’ve got you. The stats and information I pull and include on my articles aren’t proprietary information—you can access them, too, with knowledge and a little experience.
So, let’s go on a journey with me. Here are some baseball websites to bookmark in 2023. This isn’t a definitive list, by any means, but it is a great start to getting more into the information in baseball.
- Good for: team and individual statistics, articles, projections, and prospect and draft info
- Insider tip: create a custom stat table or player list and export to a CSV for easy sorting
- Hyperlink: fangraphs.com
Fangraphs is perhaps the single must-know website for baseball fans. That’s because it isn’t just a place where you can find a collection of stats—it’s a place where some of the best baseball writing lives. If there’s a big transaction or trade, an analysis of it will be on Fangraphs shortly, and it will be some of the best analysis and context you’ll find anywhere.
But if you do want stats, Fangraphs has you covered. Fangraphs particularly excels at data sorting. It’s very easy to select dates, plate appearance cutoffs, positions, ages, and more, and its custom leaderboard tools also makes it a breeze to select which stats you want to look at. Its UX in its trademark green is both distinctive and easy to read.
- Good for: hyper-detailed player and team pages, extensive historical information and lists
- Insider tip: find any event (truly, any event) in the powerful event finder tool which can be accessed with a paid subscription to Stathead
- Hyperlink: baseball-reference.com
Part of the Stathead collection of sites, Baseball-Reference is the other main stat resource out there along with Fangraphs. Like Fangraphs, Baseball-Reference has its own version of Wins Above Replacement. But both versions of WAR differ, as do the arrangement of statistics on their websites.
While Fangraphs is the better and easier tool for custom player lists and sorting, Baseball-Reference has a depth of data that Fangraphs does not have. In addition to player data, Baseball-Reference is an infinite well of event data—individual game results, season splits, standings, lists of individual and career leaders in varying categories, awards voting, and beyond.
- Good for: the go-to source for prospects, the amateur and international drafts, and farm system information
- Insider tip: if you’re not having luck with Baseball America’s internal search feature, use Google to look what you’re interested in and add “Baseball America” at the end
- Hyperlink: baseballamerica.com
There’s no doubt about it: if you like your prospect news, Baseball America is where you want to be. It has the most up-to-date information on all kinds of amateur baseball, and is just as useful in draft season as it is before and during the regular season.
Like The Athletic, Baseball America is accessible via paid subscription only, and so it’s only worth it if you like more information than just info on Royals prospects. However, BA does have a physical magazine, a unique offering that honors Baseball America’s roots as a monthly publication.
Cot’s Baseball Contracts
- Good for: up-to-date team salary figures, competitive balance payroll, and more
- Insider tip: check out each team’s Google Sheets document of payroll information, which goes five years into the future and includes an extraordinary amount of detail
- Hyperlink: legacy.baseballprospectus.com/compensation/cots
Part of Baseball Prospectus, Cot’s Contracts is the best site for finding out what’s going on in the world of baseball contracts. You can easily find historical payroll information for all 30 teams, plus additional information on the competitive balance agreement, free agents, and a transaction calendar.
But Cot’s is the best source of payroll information because of their meticulously built payroll obligations spreadsheets, which list every player that is under contract for the club and a wealth of detail about player age, options remaining, contract length, and salary figures broken out by year.
- Good for: high-quality, ad-free highlights of all baseball games
- Insider tip: use it in combination with MLB’s powerful video search tool to find video of specific events and easily navigate to the ad-free version for sharing or access
- Hyperlink: baseball.theater
MLB has been brilliantly forward thinking when it comes to video, but viewing videos on their site is often a nightmare experience filled with more ads than you thought could ever exist—and if you share a video, you subject others to those ads.
Enter Baseball Theater, probably the least known site on this list but one that offers the clearest use case: the ability to quickly search for highlight videos that run without ads. How this is able to happen I don’t know; the videos are pulled from MLB.com via an API provided by MLB itself. But in any case, it’s hard to argue with the results.
- Good for: any and all Statcast information, live gamefeed updates (including win probability) for every MLB game, and links to the most sabermetric-centered articles on MLB.com
- Insider tip: go ahead and get lost in the visualization section, which is head and shoulders above what most other sites can provide
- Hyperlink: baseballsavant.mlb.com
Of all of the sites on this list, Baseball Savant might be the most intriguing. It is the home of MLB’s Statcast statistics, where you can find how fast a player runs, how hard an outfielder throws balls to the infield, and a cornucopia of visuals and graphs illustrating everything from pitching distributions to player similarity and travel schedule and swing and miss maps and...and...and...well, you get the picture.
Baseball Savant is also the source of real-time pitch velocity and exit velocity data, as well as those fun win probability graphs. When you see a Tweet when someone was like “Vinnie Pasquantino’s grand slam was hit at an exit velocity of 113.5 MPH,” that data is available on Baseball Savant for your viewing pleasure just as soon as everyone else.