Around the hallowed horns

The Big Red Machine had four Hall-caliber players around the horn, but it wasn't better than the "$100,000 Infield."

Originally Published: July 29, 2004
By Rob Neyer | ESPN Insider
The St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers are two of the biggest surprises in the major leagues, and both teams have shot to the top of the standings largely on the strength of their outstanding infields. So outstanding, in fact, that some have suggested the Cardinals' and (especially) the Rangers' infields might rank among the best ever.

It's a little early for that, though. After all, four months does not a great infield make. Later (when you've nearly finished this column, I mean) we'll look at the Rangers and Cardinals. In the meantime, let's figure out which are the best infields in major league history. I've selected four, but first let me tell you who didn't quite pass muster, and why. In the analysis below, I've used Bill James' Win Shares, and if you'd like to conduct your own analysis, Win Shares for every major leaguer are available in the just-published "Total Baseball" (which I highly recommend to any serious baseball fan).

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