If you read a lot of baseball blogs, you’ve probably seen this news a hundred times already today. If not, you need to be warned that a killer baseball app has hit the iPhone. Christmas is here early for this stat and tech geek.
FanGraphs has made an iPhone app that currently includes their live win probability graphs, box scores, play-by-play stats, and player pages. They haven’t included all of the different types of player stats yet, but I’m hoping that future versions will be more comprehensive.
It’s $2.99 (iTunes link) on the App Store and well worth it, in my opinion. I haven’t gotten around to the baseball app review I was planning to do a while back (maybe I will for opening day next year), but this one has to be right up there with MLB.com At Bat. I would guess that the MLB app is quicker on live scores, and the live audio and video give that app a killer feature, but there’s not a better app for baseball stats.
In a regular browser, FanGraphs is in competition only with Baseball Reference for accessing scores and player stats. B-R has the best historical data and a lot more data that can be parsed in a million different ways, thanks to the Play Index. It’s invaluable for researching what a player did for a specific period of time, looking at a thousand different splits, or looking up non-team- or player-specific events. FanGraphs, on the other hand, has the easier-to-read (but slower loading) interface and better advanced stats. No one has WPA, wOBA, batted ball and pitch stats like FanGraphs does. Plus, their blog has a ton of great content every day.
So, go buy the app if you have an iPhone. FG’s David Appelman says that the app could be ported to other mobile platforms, but it’s an iPhone exclusive for now. After you buy it, leave him some suggestions on the FanGraphs blog so that this app remains the best on the market.