Baseball is a readily quantifiable sport, and baseball historians, journalists and front office personnel often use sabermetric statistics to rank the performance of a particular player or team. To many, these statistics can be intimidating and unwieldy, and the reliance on numerical data to explain a cherished pastime often meets with skepticism and confusion. For researchers and for serious fans, however, the truth is in the numbers, and statistical rankings offer an easy and accurate way to understand the game.Covering almost a decade and a half, this work scrutinizes statistics from both leagues and proves just how useful and straightforward numerical rankings can be. It examines pitching, offense, defense, and competition based on the information reflected in various stats. Many of these figures are explained, simplifying seemingly complex metrics while illuminating 14 years of baseball. Twelve appendices cover topics ranging from fielding averages, starting pitchers' won-loss records and leading closers' saves versus blown saves to total team offensive efficiency, and quarterly standings in divisional races.William Darby teaches English in Detroit. He is also the author of John Ford's Westerns (1996).