Site to see for baseball trivia buffs

April 24, 2000|By Tommy Cummings | Tommy Cummings,Knight Ridder/Tribune

FORT WORTH, Texas -- What a time to be a fantasy baseball geek.

By launching its handy Sports Geniuses Sports Search this week, FoxSports.com has provided virtual nirvana for the fantasy-baseball enthusiasts or trivia buffs who hound the newspaper sports desk.

Users accessing the search (http://sportssearch.foxsports. com) can simply type in a question about a major-league team or player from 1876 to the present and get an instant answer.

What was the Rangers wins and losses for 1996? Up pops the answer with links to the team's pitching statistics for 95-96.

The search is programmed to find such data as a player's uniform number, the park surface he plays on, detailed pitching information -- everything except what he thinks about while riding on a New York subway.

Sports Geniuses Sports Search might remind online users of Ask Jeeves (www.ask.com), the all-purpose search site that accesses hyperlinks to specific questions. But FoxSports gives answers rather than links.

Eric Ziering, president and founder of Waltham, Mass.-based Fact City, developed the search feature because he was frustrated that he couldn't get quick answers to simple questions on other sites.

In a joint news release, the two companies cited an analyst's opinion that a fact-finding search engine kept users on the site of origin. It beats the traditional way of where you go to a page, go to another page and on and on, said Danny Greenberg, FoxSports senior vice president. With this, you simply type in the keywords.

Sports Geniuses Sports Search is part of FoxSports' continuing upgrade of baseball content. News Digital Media, FoxSports.com's parent company in New York, recently acquired Stats Inc., a company in Chicago that manages and provides sports information content and analysis.

With Stats Inc. on board, Fox-Sports is carving a big niche with baseball content, taking on rivals TotalBaseball, ESPN.com and CBS SportsLine. The partnership also means the development of search sites for other sports, such as college basketball, college football and professional golf, by the fall, Ziering said.

That would be geek heaven.

Pub Date: 04/24/00

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