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Monday, June 09, 2003

1903 Ballot Discussion

I’ve sent an email to the list explaining why I’m late, if someone can post the newly eligible list in the discussion here, that’d be great too. I figure there’s no point waiting to get this going though . . .

I should have the 1902 final result up in the next few hours.

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 09, 2003 at 09:18 PM | 155 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. Chris Cobb Posted: June 12, 2003 at 07:04 PM (#514109)
John Murphy -- Could I ask you how you rank Fred Dunlap as highly as you do? I can see the argument for having Williamson on the ballot, but I'm stumped about Dunlap.
   102. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 12, 2003 at 07:18 PM (#514111)
John Murphy -- Could I ask you how you rank Fred Dunlap as highly as you do? I can see the argument for having Williamson on the ballot, but I'm stumped about Dunlap.

Dunlap was the best second baseman for the first half of the 1880s. Actually, I would rank him as the best at the position for the whole decade (though Hardy Richardson is definitely the better player value-wise).

Dunlap is to Richardson as Bennett is to Ewing.

Speaking of Ross Barnes, I think people were too harsh on him in the aftermath of Karl's calculations.

I think I would have ranked him higher now. I didn't realize what a great player he was prior to 1871. Barnes, IMO, is by no means a mistake (I felt the same for 1898, BTW).

Rosen vs. Bando (peak vs. career):

Replace Bando with Cey. Much better example (Cey's peak was much lower than Bando, but comparable career-wise).
   103. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 12, 2003 at 07:42 PM (#514112)
Joe:

I'm sold on Galvin as a much better pitcher than his stats would suggest. I'm just trying to figure out where to slot him now.
   104. Chris Cobb Posted: June 12, 2003 at 07:48 PM (#514113)
Re: Or to put it another way, Ross Barnes played against the best available competition anywhere. Harry Stovey did not.

Agreed, except that half of the best players in the league were on Barnes's team most of the time. Moreover, the league as a whole, while officially professional in that all the players were paid, appears semi-professional in practice. Players who were part of the organized professional teams that had existed prior to the NA had tremendous advantages over most of their competition, which shows up in the stratospheric numbers the top players were able to put up.

A pennant is a pennant, but the evident weakness of the competition (even if it is the best available) nevertheless diminishes the lustre of victory, to my mind, and that has to be factored in when comparing the top players of this era to top players of two decades later.

The Start debate is somewhat frustrating to observe because it's sort of polarized between arguments that seem to say that accomplishments in the earliest years of professional ball have to be taken as equal to later accomplishment when the game was stronger on the one side, and arguments that seem to dismiss all pre-1876 accomplishments completely on the other. Both extreme positions seem to me to dismiss obvious evidence. We have statistics from 1871-1875 and anecdotal evidence prior to that, which we shouldn't ignore, and they show a game in which the best players dominated the competition more thoroughly than they would in the later game, which we should keep in mind when we have to rank players from this era against later players. I wouldn't call that a timeline adjustment but a context adjustment.

What I like to see are arguments about what exactly the right adjustment to metrics for assessing value is, like adjusting raw numbers by PA rather than games or adjusting short seasons to 140-game schedules rather than 162. If we argue through these adjustments more, I think we'll get closer to the truth. We're already a lot closer, in my opinion, than most prior assessments of the changing 19th-century game that we've been looking at for evidence.
   105. jimd Posted: June 12, 2003 at 08:38 PM (#514114)
Some have argued, persuasively, that the NL of '79-'80 was not improved upon until '92.

BL(Davenport)'s DERA adjustment would argue that the NL '80-'82 was the best until 1898-1899, i.e. that the 1890's talent pool wasn't quite deep enough to support 12 teams at the 8-team level of 1880. Also that the pool wasn't deep enough for 16 teams until about 1912-13.
   106. RobC Posted: June 13, 2003 at 02:19 AM (#514116)
In the BP 2002 book, Roger Connor was 8th at 1B. No one else who is eligible is in the top 10s. However, the BP 2002 numbers dont match the BP card numbers, so Im not sure if its the exact same methodology. I think Davenport has made some adjustments since then. Or, maybe the timeline adjustments are throwing me off.
   107. DanG Posted: June 13, 2003 at 12:39 PM (#514117)
Just a thought about "mistakes" and "underserving" HoMers.

There will always be a "weakest" member of the HOM. Right now it's probably Ward. But it's not possible for us to have elected a mistake yet. There are still too many great candidates on the ballot for this to have occurred.

Where it will get interesting, as I've pointed out before, is in the elections 1924-32. There is a nine-year dearth of great retirees from 1918-1926 where we'll get almost zero no-brainer new candidates. Frank Baker is probably the only obvious HoMer debuting on the ballot in that span, although I'm not 100% yet on all the newbies.

So, any talk of mistakes should wait until the late 1920's-early 1930's. That time will be the last best chance for 19th century players to be elected.
   108. Philip Posted: June 13, 2003 at 12:40 PM (#514118)
?>Philip, I assume then that as an extension of this reasoning, you are giving more weight to accomplishments in the 1880s than the 60s or 70s, since the leagues in the 80s were better than their predecessors.
   109. favre Posted: June 14, 2003 at 08:45 PM (#514119)
I have a request. I am leaving on a trip early Monday morning and will not have access to e-mail for at least ten days. Can we either a). Start the balloting thread Sunday night or 2) allow me to post a ballot on this thread tomorrow night? I'd like to vote, particualrly since I probably will not be able to submit ballot for the 1904 elections. Thanks.
   110. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 15, 2003 at 02:24 PM (#514121)
Welcome aboard, Dean!

I guess you are, instead of myself, the ringleader for the Friends of Dickey Pearce now. :-)
   111. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 15, 2003 at 02:26 PM (#514122)
favre:

Post it here with a statement for Joe that this should be used for your ballot. There shouldn't be a problem with this.
   112. MattB Posted: June 15, 2003 at 10:02 PM (#514128)
Devin wrote:

"Hey, don't the Atlantics' 1864 & 1865 championships have to be discounted due to the wartime level of competition?"

Interesting story I just came across. In 1864, the Atlantics were taking a road trip to Rochester and Philadelphia to play the best teams in other big cities of the day. The Philadelphia Athletics were considered the best Philly team, but their star pitcher, Dick McBride, was serving the the Union army.

The game against the Atlantics was considered so important that McBride requested -- and received -- a three day furlough from the Civil War to return to Philadelphia to pitch in the game.

Even with McBride, the Atlantics beat the pride of Philadelphia by over 20 runs to continue their undefeated season.
   113. jimd Posted: June 16, 2003 at 10:37 PM (#514130)
Adding some more data to the defensive spectrum discussions from 1902:

Average OPS by position relative to league average (% above or below).

Decad 1B LF RF CF 3B 2B Ca SS Pit
   114. RobC Posted: June 17, 2003 at 02:18 PM (#514133)
Notice that the 1920's is the only decade where the average 3B had less offense than the average 2B. 2B has always been a primarily defensive position, even in the 19th century.2B and 3B were much closer then, but I dont think treating 2B/3B as reverse of today is correct. Although, they are getting closer again.

Of course, the most important change is how much more important pitchers defense (ie. the pitching) is than it was then.
   115. jimd Posted: June 17, 2003 at 03:19 PM (#514134)
Is there any way to do this using replacement level, not average level?

Probably. I'm still not sure how to calculate replacement level, so if you drop me an e-mail with some more hints, I can take a whack at it.
   116. jimd Posted: June 17, 2003 at 03:53 PM (#514135)
in the 1880s, it's called Anson-Brouthers-Connor. In the 1930s, Gehrig-Foxx-Greenberg.

True. But I think there is somewhat of a chicken-egg dilemma here. No question these guys pumped up the 1B numbers during their decades. But I also think changing defensive requirements at 1B created the conditions that made their playing more likely.

The elimination of "fair-foul" hits in 1876 also reduced the need for mobility at 1B. The introduction of "clean/lively" balls in 1920 increased offense and reduced bunting, and also reduced the need for mobility at 1B. In both cases, a generation of physically huge, slugging 1b-men followed. In between those two generations was the bunting era, and while 1B offense never dropped back to the NA days, it did drop below what CF'ers hit, perhaps reflecting a manager's preference for more defense at the position. OTOH, after the Gehrig generation, managers have tinkered with the balance, but slugging 1B-men have never gone out of style.
   117. OCF Posted: June 17, 2003 at 06:18 PM (#514137)
So in the 1870's and 1880's, left fielders outhit right fielders. This is not what I would have guessed. Since then, the the table shows LF and RF very, very close in offense, shifting back and forth a little in no particular pattern. Although the ultimate goal here is to compare ballplayers to ballplayers, most of us tend to place players into bins labeled with a position as an aid to thinking about them. I'm not so sure of the utility of having two such bins labeled "LF" and "RF". Perhaps it would be better to just have one larger bin labeled "flank outfield", into which we put Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Barry Bonds, Rickey Henderson, Hank Aaron, et. al., all for comparison on the same standards. Also note that in the 1910's, the centerfielders outhit the flank outfielders - a blip named Cobb/Speaker?
   118. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 17, 2003 at 06:58 PM (#514138)
Welcome, OCF (I think you are newbie here)! Are you voting?
   119. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 17, 2003 at 07:11 PM (#514139)
Notice that the 1920's is the only decade where the average 3B had less offense than the average 2B.

You missed the 1900s, Rob.
   120. jimd Posted: June 17, 2003 at 07:13 PM (#514140)
RF before 1890 is very interesting. Both leagues were overwhelmingly right-handed (not that many left-handed or switch hitters, and NO left-handed #1 pitchers between Lefty McMullin in 1871 and Lee Richmond in 1880); there doesn't seem to be many balls hit out there. IMO, one reason for the discrepancy between BP and BJ fielder's ratings on Thompson is that BP compares Sam to other RF'ers while BJ lumps all OF'ers together and compares RF'ers to LF'ers and CF'ers.

RF was so far left on the defensive spectrum (like DH) that it was used for an entirely different strategic purpose. Because the manager could not make any substitutions without permission of the opponent, he often put his primary defensive replacement out there, so positions could be swapped in case of minor injury, or aggravation of an existing injury, or whatever. Harry Wright, Comiskey and many others liked to have a relief pitcher out there. Some put a slugger out there and accepted the defensive cost when somebody got hurt or was ineffective; this strategy was gaining in popularity due to the success of Detroit with Thompson and New York with Tiernan just before the rule was changed. Then everybody got a slugger. (Here's a thesis topic for your doctorate in Historical Sabrmetrics, evaluating the pros and cons of the various managerial strategies. ;-)
   121. RobC Posted: June 17, 2003 at 07:15 PM (#514141)
John,

0 is less than 2? When did they change math on me?

Reading is hard.

Basically, thru the 1930's, 2b==3b as far as offense.
   122. OCF Posted: June 17, 2003 at 07:17 PM (#514142)
I have neither the time nor the resources to say anything useful about 19th century players. Make that a non-voting lurker.
   123. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 17, 2003 at 07:43 PM (#514143)
John,

0 is less than 2? When did they change math on me?

Reading is hard.


Tell me if I'm wrong (BTW, I wasn't beating up on you), but isn't O less than </b>+2</b>?

You're right, reading is hard. Remember that the next time that you feel like being a wiseass.
   124. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 17, 2003 at 07:45 PM (#514144)
BTW, if I'm misreading your post, I apologize for the tone of my post. Looking it over again, I might have jumped the gun.
   125. MattB Posted: June 17, 2003 at 08:20 PM (#514145)
Okay, so this week may represent a Great Leap Forward for Pud Galvin. With fewer than half the ballots in, he has already received more Top 5 votes than he did last week. This is because, I believe, several people have made pursuasive cases that Galvin's lower ERA+ is misleading because he played in front of poorer defenses. Here are some Top 5 Lists gleaned from Baseball Prospectus. The lists are only of eligible pitchers who have not yet been inducted:

Top 5 Games Won:

Galvin: 364
   126. RobC Posted: June 17, 2003 at 08:23 PM (#514146)
John,

You not only jumped the gun, but the howitzer, the tank, the currently unfound WMDs and the former Soviet nuclear arsenal. This time, I am slamming on you for not being able to read (or at least, not being able to recognize self-deprecating humor). Apology accepted though. BTW, when I write something, you can recognize where the :) should be by me not putting it there. I think people who dont recognize humor should make themselves look foolish.

And dont worry, when I decide to be a wiseass I will make it perfectly clear.
   127. karlmagnus Posted: June 17, 2003 at 08:33 PM (#514147)
I'm a friend of Galvin too; the ones I don't understand are Clarkson and Keefe. Bt Radbourn has the higher peak value, being about 1/3 of a world champion -- 35 wins above replacement. (and yes, I am UTTERLY unconvinced that because his Win Shares are too high, it must all have been the fielding. The fault there is in the Win Shares metric, not in Old Hoss.)

I have Radbourn 2nd after Anson and Galvin 4th. I wouldn't have put Keefe or Clarkson ahead of either, and I don't see how either of them can fail to be in the top 5, to a voter who's not desperate to do something different to the 1939 HOF voters. Anti-HOF mania has kept Old Hoss out of his rightful place in the HOM, and continues to do so.
   128. jimd Posted: June 17, 2003 at 10:50 PM (#514149)
Here's some more complete lists (top 10 including electees):

W
   129. jimd Posted: June 17, 2003 at 11:13 PM (#514150)
Talk about Radbourn's good defense? Clarkson's was about the same, and Keefe's was even better.

Forgive me. I got that backwards. It should say:

Talk about Radbourn's good defense? Keefe's was about the same, and Clarkson's was even better.
   130. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 18, 2003 at 04:04 AM (#514151)
This time, I am slamming on you for not being able to read (or at least, not being able to recognize self-deprecating humor).

I was able to recognize your self-deprecation, but a minute after I posted. That's what I get for reading too fast.

And dont worry, when I decide to be a wiseass I will make it perfectly clear.

Uh... thanks for the warning. :-)
   131. RobC Posted: June 19, 2003 at 01:40 PM (#514152)
New eligibles, as mentioned on the ballot thread. Hugh Duffy is the only important eligibility question. He is eligible sometime between 1907 and 1911. Joe?

1904:
   132. DanG Posted: June 19, 2003 at 02:32 PM (#514153)
For others who rely on the above list, note that Weyhing is actually eligible in 1906. Also, add negro Bud Fowler to the 1905 eligibles.

Yes, Hugh Duffy is a question mark. IIRC, we said 1907 earlier, possibly 1908. Joe?
   133. DanG Posted: June 19, 2003 at 02:35 PM (#514154)
Oh, and also add Jack Stivetts to the 1905 eligibles.
   134. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 02:48 PM (#514155)
No clear cut guys for 1904 such as Brouthers, though Rusie (I have a feeling he's going to be overrated), Nash, Clement, Joyce and probably Fowler are ballot worthy.

We really have to put on our thinking caps next election.
   135. RobC Posted: June 19, 2003 at 03:04 PM (#514156)
Thanks Dan for the corrections. The hitter/pitcher combo guys like Stivetts cause problems. And, the negro leaguers arent in the Lehman database, which is where I pull from.
   136. MattB Posted: June 19, 2003 at 03:04 PM (#514157)
I agree with John, especially about overrating Rusie.

I'm not exactly sure what it is about him. He's got 100 fewer wins than Galvin, and 50 fewer than Radbourn, and he's got more walks than both of them put together (although he threw fewer innings than either.) He was generally on .500 or better teams. And yet, BPro has Rusie ahead of both on both WARP-3 and WARP-1.

What am I missing about him?
   137. Howie Menckel Posted: June 19, 2003 at 03:25 PM (#514158)
I do NOT place a ton of stock in this, but in the spirit of putting info out there:

? January 10, 1918: Acknowledging that Ty Cobb, Speaker, and Collins are all good ball players, Cap Anson picks his all-time team, leaving them off. In the current issue of TSN, Anson selects, C?Buck Ewing and King Kelly; P?Amos Rusie, John Clarkson, Jim McCormick; 1B-himself; 2B?Fred Pfeffer; 3B?Ed Williamson; SS?Ross Barnes; OF?Bill Lange, George Gore, Jimmy Ryan, and Hugh Duffy.

FYI, Barnes did put some time in at SS..

I'll be away for a week, and by the time I return, no doubt Rusie will have been quite a subject of debate!!
   138. Howie Menckel Posted: June 19, 2003 at 03:33 PM (#514159)
I do NOT place a ton of stock in this, but in the spirit of putting info out there:

? January 10, 1918: Acknowledging that Ty Cobb, Speaker, and Collins are all good ball players, Cap Anson picks his all-time team, leaving them off. In the current issue of TSN, Anson selects, C?Buck Ewing and King Kelly; P?Amos Rusie, John Clarkson, Jim McCormick; 1B-himself; 2B?Fred Pfeffer; 3B?Ed Williamson; SS?Ross Barnes; OF?Bill Lange, George Gore, Jimmy Ryan, and Hugh Duffy.

FYI, Barnes did put some time in at SS..

I'll be away for a week, and by the time I return, no doubt Rusie will have been quite a subject of debate!!
   139. DanG Posted: June 19, 2003 at 03:35 PM (#514160)
John Murphy wrote:
   140. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 03:51 PM (#514161)
Fowler isn't eligible until 1905, if my info is correct.

Misread it. Sorry.

You might want to take a closer look at Mike Griffin for next election.

I have him with the Thompson/Stovey/Jones/Browning brigade. Probably won't make my list. I do like him, though.

Rusie is our first candidate who experienced success after the distance change in 1893. It will be our challenge from here on to compare these post-1892 pitchers to the earlier ones.

Unquestionably, he was a great pitcher at his peak. But when you compare his total value with his two contemporaries Young and Nichols, I can't see him in the top five. Top ten? Possibly. I'm still working on it.
   141. RobC Posted: June 19, 2003 at 04:05 PM (#514163)
Without fighting thru old threads, is 1906-1908 the first group of only electing 1 person years?
   142. jimd Posted: June 19, 2003 at 04:52 PM (#514164)
January 10, 1918: Acknowledging that Ty Cobb, Speaker, and Collins are all good ball players, Cap Anson picks his all-time team, leaving them off. In the current issue of TSN, Anson selects, C?Buck Ewing and King Kelly; P?Amos Rusie, John Clarkson, Jim McCormick; 1B-himself; 2B?Fred Pfeffer; 3B?Ed Williamson; SS?Ross Barnes; OF?Bill Lange, George Gore, Jimmy Ryan, and Hugh Duffy.
   143. Howie Menckel Posted: June 19, 2003 at 04:52 PM (#514165)
You are correct, Rob C. And Hamilton the only newbie mortal lock in that span....
   144. RobC Posted: June 19, 2003 at 05:06 PM (#514166)
Howie -
   145. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 05:12 PM (#514167)
(2) many people (myself very possibly included) are going to prefer him to pitchers of roughly equal stature who pitched before him due to the greater difficulty of the task he was performing.

Post-1893 was definitely tougher than pre-1893. I don't understand how that necessarily translates to the pitchers of the '90s being better than the '80s. The offensive stars of the teens had a much more difficult job than the greats of the twenties, but that doesn't mean I have to rank Cobb over Ruth.
   146. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 05:18 PM (#514168)
What was harder about pitching from 60'6" than from 50'? IMO, what caused the older pitchers problems wasn't any increased difficulty, just that it was completely different. They'd spent a decade or more perfecting pitches at one distance from flat ground, and now they had to do it from a mound, further away. 50' curve balls now broke too soon. The young kids with their fast balls (Rusie, Young, Nichols) just kept rearing back and firing, and trying to perfect a breaking pitch; didn't bother them much at all.

What jimd said.
   147. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 05:39 PM (#514170)
Even if it wasn't harder to be a good pitcher post-1893, a post-1893 pitcher such as Rusie has a sufficiently modern skill set that we can comfortably project him to have been a successful major league pitcher in the 1920s, 1950s, or 1980s, while the pre-1893 skill set is so different that we cannot project Radbourne or Galvin forward in the same way.

But this should be irrelevant, Andrew. Rusie himself might not have been a good pitcher today. That doesn't mean that I should ignore him. We're trying to highlight the best players of all eras. I don't care if the pre-1893 pitchers couldn't excel under "modern" rules.

To be honest, I find this very arbitrary.
   148. Carl Goetz Posted: June 19, 2003 at 05:45 PM (#514171)
'January 10, 1918: Acknowledging that Ty Cobb, Speaker, and Collins are all good ball players, Cap Anson picks his all-time team, leaving them off. In the current issue of TSN, Anson selects, C?Buck Ewing and King Kelly; P?Amos Rusie, John Clarkson, Jim McCormick; 1B-himself; 2B?Fred Pfeffer; 3B?Ed Williamson; SS?Ross Barnes; OF?Bill Lange, George Gore, Jimmy Ryan, and Hugh Duffy.'

Sounds to me like its a good thing that there was no Veteran's committee while Anson was still alive. He'd have been worse than Frankie Frisch.

Speaking of Frankie Frisch, am I allowed to use my 1-year boycott when Frisch becomes eligible based on what he did to the original Hall of Fame?
   149. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 05:51 PM (#514172)
Speaking of Frankie Frisch, am I allowed to use my 1-year boycott when Frisch becomes eligible based on what he did to the original Hall of Fame?

I would be strongly against it. The demonization of Frisch makes no sense to me. The process was the culprit, not Frisch. Besides, was he really any different than Ted Williams or Bob Feller? I don't think all three of them were malicious, just wrongheaded.
   150. DanG Posted: June 19, 2003 at 06:16 PM (#514173)
Here's the SABR Bioproject entry for Amos Rusie.
   151. jimd Posted: June 19, 2003 at 07:02 PM (#514175)
(1) It seems intuitive to me that it is more difficult to dominate hitters from 60 feet than from 50

Probably true, though I think that they added the mound at the same time to try to offset that somewhat. It didn't work though. League strikeout rates dropped by a third (3.33 to 2.17 K/9IP)

and that the relative quality of the pitcher had more impact on the game post-1893 than it did before hand.

Eventually true, but it took more rules-tinkering to get there. Strikeout rates were the lowest since 1877 (2.02 K/9IP) which was when pitchers had to pitch strictly underhand (Spalding style, no submariners allowed). Strikeout rates came back when foul balls became strikes in the 20th century, starting the no-offense deadball era. I could argue that the average 1890's pitcher had less impact than the average 1880's pitcher due to this.

(2) Relatedly, at first blush, it seems to me that the difference between the performance of the best pitchers and the run-of-the-mill pitcher increased after 1893. I'd be interested to see if any one has looked at this question systematically, using standard deviation or some other genuine statistical measure.

Yes, the rules change almost completely blew away the older generation of pitchers. The situation was somewhat like the NA was for hitters, a bunch of "kids" competing to be the best with practically no competition from an established elder generation. The talent pool was therefore much shallower, so the standard deviation should be much larger. The difference from the NA is that the young pitchers are facing a mature pool of veteran hitters spraying hits all over the place. I think that BP/Davenport is probably correct in saying there was a league quality problem during the 1890's, mostly in the pitching because it took most of the decade to rebuild the pitching quality.

(3) Even if it wasn't harder to be a good pitcher post-1893, a post-1893 pitcher such as Rusie has a sufficiently modern skill set that we can comfortably project him to have been a successful major league pitcher in the 1920s, 1950s, or 1980s, while the pre-1893 skill set is so different that we cannot project Radbourne or Galvin forward in the same way. (We have had a major disagreement about whether this factor is relevant or even permissible in evaluating players. We might need to resolve that question or agree to disagree about it in the next two weeks.)

What John Murphy said. Value rules.
   152. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 19, 2003 at 08:20 PM (#514176)
and that the relative quality of the pitcher had more impact on the game post-1893 than it did before hand.

Most definitely, but they also pitch less often because of this. Pedro Martinez works harder per inning than Walter Johnson did during the teens. However, Johnson could pitch many more innings because it was easier. When you put everything in its proper context, is the best pitcher then better than the best pitcher now over the entire season (forgetting about the actual competition)? I tend to think they are the same.
   153. MattB Posted: June 20, 2003 at 02:25 PM (#514177)
One of the hardest parts of this project, it seems to me, is comparing the pitchers to the hitters. And, while I don't think there should be a pitcher quota, as I look at the inductees and likely inductees, it seems likely that without a late groundswell of support only 2.5 of our first 14 inductees (about 18%) will be pitchers (Clarkson, Keefe, and half of Ward), or only about half as many as I think there reasonably should be (assuming that at least a third of the game is pitching).

So, as I re-examine my ballot next "year", in a year when there will not be any strong hitters entering the ballot (Jack Clements, anybody?), I would frame the question this way, without pushing any single candidate (pudgalvinpudgalvin) -- what is the likelihood that the 13th best offensive player of the 19th century was more Meritorious than the third best pitcher? I find it unlikely. So, when I put together my 1904 ballot, I think that, when I look at everyone again objectively, it will be hard for me to conclude that a pitcher (pudgalvinpudgalvin) should not be First on my ballot.
   154. DanG Posted: June 20, 2003 at 05:51 PM (#514178)
Matt, I pretty much agree with the notion that comparing pitchers to hitters is one of our major challenges. I also agree that voters should keep in mind the idea of fair representation for pitchers of each era.

With that in mind, I put this question to you: What is the likelihood that the 4th best pitcher of the 1880's was more Meritorious than the best pitcher of the 1870's?

As the voting stands now, Galvin and Radbourn are on track to join Clarkson and Keefe in the HoM before Spalding. Many voters would also add Caruthers ahead of AG. The 1880's are also likely to outdo the 1890's, where only Rusie, Nichols and Young seem to be likely HoMers.

With Rusie coming on, it's likely that 4 of the top 10 in the 1904 voting will be pitchers. So, it's not that people aren't voting for them. The problem is the differences of opinion as to who should be next. It may take awhile, but I think all 4 will eventually make it.

As much as I like Pud, when it comes to recognizing overlooked pitchers, Mr. Spalding is the first who comes to mind. (And yes, I did notice that you are a strong support of both candidates.)
   155. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: September 05, 2004 at 12:22 AM (#837654)
Thread could not be reconstructed.
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