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— A Look at Baseball's All-Time Best

Saturday, June 26, 2004

1929 Ballot

Here it is, early as I head out on vacation . . . please refrain from voting until Monday, unless you are also going to be computerless next week, thanks! I’ll be back Saturday evening, 7/3.

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 26, 2004 at 12:16 PM | 127 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 26, 2004 at 12:19 PM (#699501)
moving this to the hot topics!
   2. Brad Harris Posted: June 26, 2004 at 01:18 PM (#699509)
Don't tell me I'm the first one?

1. Dickey Pearce – Now that his inclusion in not in question, we’re down to his being more dominant in his time than Wallace was in his.
2. Lip Pike - I like the Monte Irvin comparison someone made. Pike is the best CF on the ballot.
3. Eddie Cicotte - This knuckleballer was a great one and projects to continue being one if he hadn't been expelled from the league. Who else is a FOEC? I’ll have to come up with a comprehensive argument in the next few years. I think he’s the best pitcher available.
4. Jimmy Sheckard - Best OF on the ballot for combination peak/career.
5. Gavvy Cravath - Gets the nod over Thompson as the next best OF. (Boy, there's a lot of them.)
6. Cupid Childs - I've been converted. Just a hair better than Doyle, on the whole.
7. Larry Doyle - Still very much underrated by the electorate.
8. Bob Caruthers - Overall value is underestimated.
9. Sam Thompson - Has fallen considerably down my ballot as I've reconsidered others. Too short a career to rate much higher ATPIT.
10. George Van Haltren - I just can't decide between these two guys. Geez.
11. Bobby Wallace – Peak wasn’t that bad. Best (well-documented) shortstop still available.
12. Ed Konetchy – Got to give props to "Big Ed". Better player than Beckley, IMO.
13. Jimmy Ryan – I think VH was better.
14. Clark Griffith – Reappears on my ballot.
15. Rube Waddell – Best of the post-1893, short career (Joss, Wood, etc.) group.

Close, but no cigar:

16. Spotswood Poles – Instinctively want to place him higher. Numbers not as impressive as I would have thought.
17. Jake Beckley – There has to be some value in being good over a long period of time, even if you were never great.
18. Mickey Welch – I’m going to give him an 1880s discount; never dominated, always there. (The “Bert Blyleven” of the Nineteenth Century?)
19. Ed Williamson – hovering under the radar, but a “greater” player than Cross or Leach ever were.
20. Charley Jones – Adjusting his season totals for the short schedule make him look much more impressive.
   3. Howie Menckel Posted: June 26, 2004 at 04:23 PM (#699547)
Brad:
Some people are following the above "please refrain from voting until Monday" advice by - well not voting until Monday.
;)
   4. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 28, 2004 at 04:26 AM (#703184)
I use a combination of peak and career for the rankings. Therefore, career guys will mix with peak guys on my ballot. I also view each position on an equal basis. This doesn't mean that I have a quota to fill each position for my top ten. Sometimes a position will not have a viable candidate for a certain "year." For seasonal opinions, I use WS times WS per 162 games.

I use Win Shares as the base for my ranking system, though I am now using a modified version (any negative values are converted into zeroes) of BRAR, FRAR and PRAR for the NA.


1) Dickey Pearce-SS/C (1): All-around player at the position and arguably the best player of his time. Considered the best before George Wright (1856-1866). Caught many games as a catcher (even was an All-Star at the position one year). Even with my conservative evaluation, he has to rank near the top. He played for over twenty years in the best leagues or on the best teams of the 1850s and '60s. Even though his NA and NL was meager (he was 35 in '71), he still had the most value after 35 until Dahlen and Davis, FWIW.              

According to our Constitution, he definitely falls within the scope of this project.

2) Cupid Childs-2B (2): Best second baseman of the '90s. Too short of a career to knock out McPhee for tops for the 19th century, but not that far behind. Considering the average second basemen of his era, he was fairly durable. Best major league second baseman for 1890, (almost in 1891), 1892, 1893, 1894, 1895, 1896 and 1897.          

Childs was the best major league second baseman more times in a season than Doyle was the best NL second baseman. IMO, there's no way that the Laughing One goes above the Little Fat Man.

Childs has the most seasons as the best player at his position who is not in the HoM and compares favorably in that regard with the majority of HoMers, IMO. That doesn't mean he belongs as high as I have him, but he should be hitting everyone's ballot somewhere. Please take another look at him.

3) Lip Pike-CF/RF/2B (4): Considered the fastest man of his time. Major star prior to the NA. Two things hold him back somewhat: durability and how good of a player he was at his position compared to his competition pre-NA (Pearce is not affected as much by the latter in my analysis, obviously). Best major league rightfielder for 1871 and 1873. Best major league centerfielder for 1874-1876.

4) Charley Jones-LF/CF (5): Like York below, he was playing a more difficult position than the one that it evolved into. I gave him a little more credit for his (unfairly) blacklisted years. Best major league leftfielder for 1877, 1879 and 1884. Best AA centerfielder for 1883. Best AA leftfielder for 1885 (close to being the best in the majors).

5) Tom York-LF (6): I know some here looking at his OPS+ must be saying to themselves "Murph has him over guys like Sheckard?!?" Fair question, but, IMO, York was a more dominating player at his position than Sheckard was during his time. Long enough career and many times as the best at his position (when left field was more like centerfield today) deserves a ballot spot.Best leftfielder of the 1870s. Best major league leftfielder for 1873, 1875, 1877 and 1878 (extremely close in 1872 and 1881).

6) Vic Willis-P (7): Why does this man receive such little respect? Willis and McGinnity are very close, IMO. Best major league pitcher for 1899. Best NL pitcher for 1901.

7) Ed Konetchy-1B (8): Best first baseman of the Deadball Era, IMO. Best major league first baseman for 1910, 1911 and 1916 (very close in 1909 and 1911). Best NL first baseman for 1909, 1911 and 1919.

8) Roger Bresnahan-C/CF (10): Greatest catcher of the Deadball Era not named Santop or Petway. The poor man's Buck Ewing (Johnny Kling was the poor man's Charlie Bennett) is still good enough to be here on my ballot. Slightly better than Noisy behind the plate, but the Duke played longer and at other positions. Best major league catcher for 1905, 1906 and 1908. Best major league centerfielder for 1903.

9) Rube Foster-P (n/a): Convinced he belongs at least this high thanks to Chris Cobb. High peak and long enough career allow him to fall in at #9.

10) Bill Monroe-2B/3B (11): I think he's worthy. Long career and nice peak. Many considered him a better hitter and fielder than Jimmy Collins as a third baseman. McGraw said (I'm assuming somewhat hyperbolically) that Monroe was the greatest of all-time. This may be too low for him.
   5. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 28, 2004 at 04:27 AM (#703185)
11) Hugh Duffy-CF/LF/RF (12): "Only" the third best centerfielder of the '90s, but that position was very strong for that decade. Best major league rightfielder for 1890 and 1891. Best major league centerfielder for 1892, 1893 and 1894.

12) Frank Chance-1B/C (13): Best first baseman for the first decade of the 20th century. Even more so than Beckley, the Peerless Leader shouldn't be compared with the ABC boys or the post-1920 grouping of first baseman. The cream-of the-crop from Franklin Adam's famous trio. Best major league first baseman for 1903, 1904. 1905, 1906, and 1907 (close in 1908). Best NL first baseman for 1908.

13) Rube Waddell-P (14): If he had been a little more serious and quit the horse playing... Best AL pitcher for 1905.

14) Bob Caruthers (15): Bob moves up a slot! :-) While I still think his peak wasn't as historically great as others think and he did have a short career, I feel I have been shortchanging him (and other 1880s pitchers) a tad. Parisian Bob gets a nod from me. Best AA pitcher for 1889 and close to being the best AA pitcher for 1885 and 1886.

15) Jake Beckley-1B (n/a): Back on my ballot. Not much peak, but plenty of career. Better than his numbers suggest since first base was tougher during his time than during the ABC boys' era. Best major league first baseman for 1900.



Van Haltren, Wallace, Sheckard, Ryanand Thompson are close. Griffith is a little farther away, but there is a lot of competition down there....

I'm still trying to figure out where Poles belongs. My guts says he belongs on the ballot, but I'll pass on him this week.
   6. Rusty Priske Posted: June 28, 2004 at 12:39 PM (#703250)
1. Bobby Wallace (1,1,2) PHoM 1920

Finally his time.

2. Jimmy Sheckard (2,2,3) PHoM 1919
3. Bob Caruthers (3,4,5) PHoM 1919

Both just a matter of time.

4. George Van Haltren (4,3,4) PHoM 1912. Farthest overdue.
5. Mickey Welch (6,5,9) PHoM 1929

Both underrated.

6. Jake Beckley (5,9,7) PHoM 1913

7. Rube Foster (9,9,11)

Starting to get more recognition.

8. Lip Pike (7,x,x)

I was behind on him, but now he is a solid mid-ballot guy.

9. Jimmy Ryan (8,10,10) PHoM 1914

10. Dickey Pearce (10,7,8) PHoM 1927

Will he ever get enough support?

11. Spotswood Poles (new) PHoM 1929

The best this year had to offer.

12. Tommy Leach (14,15,13) PHoM 1921
13. Bill Monroe (11,13,14)
14. Hugh Duffy (11,13,14)

The perpetual ballot fillers.

15. Clark Griffith (x,x,x)

The weak year allows him to sneak onto the ballot.

16-20. McCormick, Powell, Mullane, Doyle, Childs
21-25. F.Jones, Thompson, Willis, Waddell, Konetchy
16-30. White, Gleason, Cross, Cicotte, Bresnahan
   7. karlmagnus Posted: June 28, 2004 at 12:48 PM (#703251)
Once again in 2 parts

Poles is on at the bottom of the ballot; Petway is between Bresnahan and Clements. None of the non-NL players seem worthy of a place.

1.(8-9-8-14-13-11-8-5-4-5-4-5-4-2-2-2-1-2-1-1-1-1-1-2-1-1-1-1-1-1) Bob Caruthers - Still in first place. 218-99 is more and more impressive when you compare Rusie, Griffith and McGinnity, let alone Walsh (Caruthers won 25 more games than Walsh and lost 27 fewer, pitching about 100 fewer innings. As a batter TB/PA .483, TB/Outs .793, so better than Nap and close to Stovey. If he’d just concentrated on pitching, added 50% to his career length, and gone 327-149, he’d have been in on the first ballot. Magnificent peak: 1886-87 59-23 and an OPS+ of 180 on 681AB beats anyone (Ruth’s best 2-way years, 1917-18, he was 37-20 and OPS+ of 182 on 440AB.) Compare with Ward, whose TB+BB/PA was .374 and TB+BB/Outs .545 and W-L was 164-102 (ERA+118) Caruthers was a better hitter and much better pitcher - so why have we elected Ward and not Caruthers?

2.(N/A-9-9-10-7-7-5-5-4-3-5-6-5-3-4-3-4-4-3) Jake Beckley Adjust his 2930 hits to full seasons and he's up there with Nap. After much internal debate, I have moved him marginally ahead of Welch, as we have seen more 307-win pitchers (8 others among currently HOM-eligible) than 2930-hit hitters (5 others). TB+BB/PA .455, TB+BB/Outs .707 not as good as outfielder glut - but much of his career was played in the dead ball ‘00s, and 1B was a marginally more important fielding position than outfielder then. Played for un-famous teams. Better than Keeler, almost as good as Crawford.

3. (15-14-11-12-10-9-6-8-7-7-6-7-6-3-3-3-2-3-2-2-3-2-4-5-4-2-3-2-3-3-2) Mickey Welch - 307-210 comes to impress me more and more, particularly as we get more and more of the short career dead ball era pitcher glut. 1885 looks like a pretty good peak too; 44-11 with a 1.67 ERA is pretty impressive, compared for example to Clarkson’s 49-19 at 2.73 in 1889. Welch not as good as Clarkson, but not that far off. Better than the 00s pitchers, all of whom were pitching in favorable conditions, none of whom (other than Young and Matty) got near 300 wins.

4.(N/A-6-5-9-8-9-8-7-10-11-8-9-7-7-6-6-9-9-8-6-6-6-5) Hugh Duffy TB+BB/PA of .489 and TB/Outs of .788, but this in the high-offense 1890s, and he’s way below Beckley on total hits. Like the 1894 peak, though - and it’s ’94 not ’93, pitchers had had a year to adjust. Significantly behind Beckley on counting considerations.

5. (N/A-13-13-14-12-11-7-6-6-5-6-5-4-4-6-9-8-6-6-5-5-8-10-9-7-7-7-6) Sam Thompson Only 2,136 hits adjusted to 130 game season. However TB+BB/PA was .534 and TB/Outs .865, among the highest figures on the ballot, so high peak. Even though this figure is inflated by his having no decline phase, and by his big years coinciding with hit gluts, each new outfielder makes Thompson look a little more special.

6. (N/A-10-8-7) Eddie Cicotte. Only 208-149 and an ERA+ of 123, but should get about 25% of the bonus for the 300-win carrer he should have had (he was, after all, a knuckleballer, who tend to peak late.)

7. (N/A-14-13-15-N/A-15-N/A-14-N/A-10-8) Clark Griffith He’s another Amos Rusie, but not quite as good (Rusie was my #12 the year we elected him, I’d have him about 5 on this ballot, just ahead of Cicotte.) 237 wins is not outstanding, but his winning percentage is good and his 1898 peak is nice - but he doesn’t match up even close to Welch or Caruthers, in my view (Welch’s 1885 is much better than Griffith’s 1898.)

8. (N/A-10-9-8-7-6-7-8-5-12-10-10-N/A-10) Jimmy Ryan Counting stats similar to Van Haltren and better than Duffy, peak slightly better than Van H, not as good as Duffy, rate stats also not as good as Duffy. Hence, on balance should be below Duffy. TB+BB/PA .485, TB+BB/Outs .773. He and Van H move above the pioneer bloc, now there’s room for them.
   8. karlmagnus Posted: June 28, 2004 at 12:50 PM (#703252)
Part 2, if it fits

9. (N/A-13-12-13-13-12-14-15-12-13-11-11-N/A-11) George van Haltren Counting stats almost like Delahanty, but again need to be deflated for the 1890s. TB+BB/PA .469, TB+BB/Outs .765, not overwhelming for the 90s. No peak to speak of - what happened to him in 1893-95, when he should have been in his prime?

10. (N/A-11-12) Dickey Pearce Very unimpressive in NA, but long and pretty good career in period before the leagues – best bit of it however was before 1865, when data is very sketchy indeed and competition was local to NY area. Probably the third best 1860s player, behind George Wright and Joe Start.

11. Pike (9-12-12-11-9-10-10-13-12-15-14-N/A-12-13) Lip Pike - Like Start, give some credit for missing 1860s. However, normalize 1871-78 season by season and he gets 1,592 hits after 26 - not quite an obvious HOM-er. 4 “normalized 200-hit” seasons, but only just, whereas Meyerle’s 1871 peak normalizes to 320 (obviously a random fluctuation, but in the right direction!)TB+BB/PA .478, TB+BB/Outs .713.

12. (N/A-9-12-11-14-13-14-12-11-12-13-11-11-9-9-13-14) Levi Meyerle. Normalize 1871-77 season by season to 130 games and he gets 1,577 hits, only 15 less than Pike in 1 less season. Better peak, too. TB+BB/PA .482, TB+BB/Outs .751, though this, like McVey and Pike’s figures, includes no “decline” phase. Also, he was a 3B. Why did Meyerle quit? -- unlike Pike, he was nowhere near done in 1877. OPS+164 vs 152 for McVey and 155 for Pike. Lower than Pike because not a huge pre-’71 career.

13. (12-15-N/A-11-10-12-10-10-9-8-11-12-10-10-8-8-14-15) Harry Wright Better than Pearce in NA, but how good was he really compared to the rest? But I’m convinced by the anecdotal evidence that he has to have been at least as good as this. Lowest of the 4 pioneers, because pre-71 career not very distinguished.

14. Spotswood Poles. Wonderful name, and on reputation I’d originally intended to put him pretty high. But on inspection he wasn’t quite the player Pete Hill was, so slots on at the bottom of the ballot, about where Home Run Johnson would be, to remain around here until 1934 glut if not elected.

15 Bobby Wallace. Decent length career, TB+BB/PA only .402, TB+BB/Outs .596, though mostly in the deadball era, and he wasn't a bad pitcher for a year or two. Career length considerations, and pitching moves him up an extra couple of spaces, but he’s slid back down below pioneer bloc.

OFF BALLOT
16. Cupid Childs

17. (N/A-15) Jimmy Sheckard Only 2,084 hits, but a walk machine. TB+BB/PA .440, TB+BB/Outs .691, but that's in the low scoring 00s.

18. (N/A-15-N/A) Deacon McGuire
19 Tony Mullane
20. Pete Browning.
21. Rube Foster
22. Larry Doyle
23. Roger Bresnahan

24. Bruce Petway. Whereas Santop will be pretty close to the top of the ballot, I don’t see Petway as being better than the IMHO fairly mediocre Bresnahan, who has hovered around here, a few spots below Bennett and McGuire, who gets boosted by career length.

25. Jack Clements
26. Sam Leever
27. (N/A) Bill Monroe
28. Vic Willis
29. Mike Tiernan
30. Chief Bender
31. Ed Konetchy
32. Hughie Jennings
33 Jesse Tannehill

34. Rube Waddell Short career but very high peak, but under 200 wins so probably not HOM-worthy. 193-143 not at all special (40 less wins) compared to Griffith or McGinnity. Fielding and hitting negative, not positive -- I don't buy it.

35 Tommy Leach
36. Lave Cross
37. (N/A-15-N/A) Tom York
   9. robc Posted: June 28, 2004 at 01:33 PM (#703265)
1. Bobby Wallace - A step above a group of marginal HoMers.
2. Sam Thompson - Some small adjustments this year, Thompson moves back ahead of Sheckard, they are still tied.
3. Jimmy Sheckard - Near the top of this mass of OFers.
4. George VanHaltren - I didnt think the OF glut would lead to guys not getting elected, but it has. Maybe.
5. Jimmy Ryan - Yet another almost good enough OFer.
6. Lave Cross - 3B is slightly less underrepresent than in years past thanks to Baker. After seeing some of the fielding WS numbers posted, I am much happier with my placement of Cross than before.
7. Jake Beckley - all career, no peak.
8. Cupid Childs - I follow my run of OFs with a run of IFs.
9. Hughie Jennings - all peak, no career.
10. Bob Caruthers - Pitchers are well represented, one more wouldnt hurt.
11. Herman Long - beginning of ballot filler
12. Fielder Jones - These players are the best of the guys that dont belong in the HoM.
13. Jimmy Williams - Needed more players named Jimmy on my ballot.
14. Clark Griffith - Adjusted my pitching numbers some, he makes my ballot for the first time, I think.
15. Billy Nash - Not as good as Crosby. Better than Stills and Young.

Pearce - 19
Pike - 22
Joe Start got most of the pre NA credit I was willing to give.
   10. PhillyBooster Posted: June 28, 2004 at 01:35 PM (#703267)
Like everyone else, the new additions to the ballot will be found at the bottom. Marginal shakeups in the mid-ballot, as well. To me, the whole process is somewhat recursive, in that who is elected one week will effect my analysis of the next week. With Baker in, the hole at third base seems less deep, so Ed Williamson droops a little. With McGinnity in, favorable comparisons with other pitchers help their cases somewhat too. Another year without a centerfielder going in makes their cases a little more urgent.

1. Bob Caruthers (1) -- “Career value” means all the value for the entire, not “long career with no peak.” Caruthers had great value condensed into a short career. His peak is a “plus,” but voters who fail to see that he is also a “career” selection are, in my opinion, doing their addition incorrectly. A hitter who plays 3 years, and goes 700 for 700 with 300 homers each year would have the most “career” value in history, even though his career was only 3 seasons long.

2. Jake Beckley (2) – I disagree with those who deny his “peak.” He was the best first baseman for almost every year that he wasn’t finishing second to a HoMer.

3. Rube Foster (8) -- Bud Fowler debuted in 1878. It’s now 50 years later. Think maybe the best eligible black pitcher of that half-century could get a little more benefit of the doubt?

4. Dickey Pearce (10) -- In for a penny, in for a pound, right? If I’m giving him credit for being the best of his era, it no longer makes sense to factor in a discount for quality of his era at this level. He’s simply not competing against the “Best X” of some better era, but the 15th or 16th best. Except for the above, he’s the one I’m most convinced was “great” in his era.

5. Roger Bresnahan (3) -- Voters who refuse to adjust-up catchers for their shorter careers will have a very small contingent of catchers in their Hall – and a lot more mediocre outfielders. Who helped their team more – Jimmy Sheckard when the opposition had Sherry Magee and Fred Clarke, or Roger Bresnahan, when the opposition had Red Dooin and George Gibson?

6. Sam Thompson (9) -- When you stand in right field in the 1890s, no one hits the ball to you. As a result, you accumulate fewer Defensive Thingies (choose your metric). Of course, someone had to stand in right field, and Thompson accumulated the Thingies he could at an impressive rate. I can see penalizing a guy for dropping the ball, but not for standing there while the ball was hit to someone else. It’s a modified Edgar Martinez argument, I guess. If you’re going to have the position, then you have to judge it somewhat on its own merits. This is not like “relief pitcher,” which is a usage pattern, not a position. I team doesn’t NEED relief pitchers. A team does need a Right Fielder (and a catcher, sometimes a DH). If the position does not allow for accumulation of large statistics, then that has to be taken into account.

7. Gavvy Cravath (6) -- And so does the fact that California was much further away from New York in 1904 than it is now. When he played for Los Angeles, he was among the best on his team every year. That his greatness wasn’t recognized until the second half of his career is more the fault of the owners than Gavvy. If Bill James and the stat-crowd were around 100 years ago, they’d be yelling “Free Gavvy Cravath” with every report of a game winning hit in Los Angeles or a home run in Minneapolis. They’d be saying, “How can the Boston Beaneaters claim that they can’t compete with the Cubs juggernaut? They’re playing a string of nobodies in right field, when Gavvy Cravath is available for league minimum and could outplay all of them!”

8. Mickey Welch (12) -- I just can’t look at his and Keefe’s results (wins) and compare their peripherals and not conclude that Welch was either a “clutch pitcher” or that he eased up enough in non-close games or with 2 outs and the bases empty to warp his stats.

9. George van Haltren (14) -- Centerfield is an underrated position, and I now think George is the top of the relatively low-sloped mountain.

10. Cupid Childs (11) -- Best second baseman on the ballot, great peak, career longer that you probably think.

11. Lip Pike (7) -- Okay, on one side, he’s Mister Peak, on the other side, it we induct him then there’s a dozen guys who played in a 6-team 1878 National League. If I thought he was one of the best and had been overlooked, that’d be one thing, but if he goes in, he’s the 12th best. That’s the equivalent of the 60th best player in a 30-team league. Kind of iffy.

12. Pete Browning (off) -- Four spots, three centerfielders? Yeah. But their all the best available of their era.

13. Frank Chance (off) -- Relatively short career, but there is no doubt that he was the best during it.

14. Bobby Wallace (15) -- That 5% for pitching makes my ballot, and for many who don’t make the same positional allowance I do, I can see how that moved him to the top.

15. Clark Griffith (off) -- Great pitcher in a great hitter’s era.

16-20: Williamson, Petway, Konetchy, Evers, Monroe
21-25: Sheckard, Poles, C. Jones, Jennings, McCormick
26-30: Doyle, Duffy, Ryan, Willis, McGraw
   11. Jeff M Posted: June 28, 2004 at 01:43 PM (#703272)
Billy Nash - Not as good as Crosby. Better than Stills and Young.

Better than Young? Do you have any data to back that up?
   12. PhillyBooster Posted: June 28, 2004 at 02:17 PM (#703291)
Obviously, Rob is only considering work in the "CSNY League" as "Major League" and discounting their respective solo efforts (as well as Stills' and Young's "minor league" work with Buffalo Springfield.) That gives Young a shorter career, although with a somewhat higher peak than Nash.
   13. Howie Menckel Posted: June 28, 2004 at 02:20 PM (#703296)
Surely, I'm the only geek who went to baseball-reference.com to see if there ever was a player named "Stills," for potential comedic purposes.

I know, don't call you "Shirley."
   14. ronw Posted: June 28, 2004 at 02:55 PM (#703344)
1929 Ballot (MVP candidates, All-Star candidates, and total HOM seasons are my own generalizations based on raw WS and yearly competition. I'll gladly incorporate WARP when they finally complete their fix.)

1. Dickey Pearce Until 1925, I had been considering the project to run from 1871, with pre-1871 contributions only available to those players who made significant post-1871 contributions. However, John Murphy pointed out that the literal language of the constitution requires us to consider pre-1871 players. Pearce was a top player during the pre-statistics period for a long enough time to be deserving of enshrinement.

2. Jake Beckley Every year, as fewer 1B come along to challenge him, Beckley looks more and more unique. In his 16 All-Star seasons, he only averaged about 60% of MVP value, so that hurts him with peak voters, but I’m a career/prime man. Never an MVP candidate, All-Star candidate 1888-1895, 1897, 1899-1905. (16 HOM seasons)

3. George Van Haltren Stands ahead of the CF glut in my career/prime system. Never an MVP candidate, All-Star candidate 1888-1901. That is 14 consecutive solid years, the majority in a tough consolidated league. (14 HOM seasons)

4. Jimmy Sheckard I think his defense makes him the equivalent of electee Sherry Magee. MVP Candidate 1901, 1903, 1911. All-Star candidate 1899-1900, 1902, 1905-1907, 1909-1910, 1912. (12 HOM seasons)

5. Jimmy Ryan My system likes Jimmy almost as much as Van Haltren. MVP candidate 1888. All-Star candidate 1886-1887, 1889-1892, 1894-1899, 1902. (14 HOM seasons)

6. Bobby Wallace Interesting that Wallace, a similar type of player to Beckley, gets substantially more support than Jake. I think it is Bobby's 1899 and 1901, which are better seasons than any of Beckley’s (although they aren’t terrific peak seasons). The majority of the rest of their careers, Wallace and Beckley are borderline All-Stars, but Beckley lasted longer. Never an MVP candidate, but All-Star candidate 1897-1899, 1901-1908, 1910. (12 HOM seasons)

7. Hugh Duffy Part of the now underrepresented CF block. We have Hamilton from the 1890's, and no 1900's CF representatives. MVP candidate 1893-1894, All-Star candidate 1889-1892, 1895-1899. (11 HOM seasons)

8. Rube Foster The value he brought to his teams seems to surpass that of short-career contemporaries like Waddell and Joss. Duffy and especially Wallace played a bit more.

9. Mickey Welch I realized that I had been substantially underrating some 1880’s pitching seasons. Welch benefits from a reevaluation. MVP candidate 1884-1885, All-Star candidate 1880-81, 1883, 1886-1889 (9 HOM seasons)

10. Spotswood Poles I’ve seen enough to have him join the OF glut. If anyone deserves war credit, it’s a man who won medals and Purple Hearts while serving a country that wouldn’t let him play in the majors.

11. Tony Mullane Tony always seems to get shortchanged, but he should benefit from anyone’s AA analysis with respect to Caruthers, Browning, or Charley Jones. Yes, Mullane was dominant in the weak 1882-1884 AA, but a HOMer should be dominant in that weak league. Then, after holding out for 1885, the Apollo of the Box was among the top 6 pitchers in the AA of 1886-1888, which some say was on par with the NL. From 1889-1892, he slipped a bit, but was generally one of the top 15 pitchers in his league. This coincides to his move to the NL in 1890, but he was already on the decline in the 1889 AA. Finally, he had a decent swan-song year in 1893, despite the mound change. MVP candidate 1882-1884, All-Star candidate 1886-1893 (11 HOM seasons)

12. Bill Monroe There aren’t too many “best” black players we have considered at this point, but Monroe is consistently mentioned as among the top players, and has enough of a career case to warrant ballot placement.

13. Roger Bresnahan I think this unique talent belongs on the ballot, and should eventually be enshrined. MVP candidate 1906, 1908 All-Star candidate 1903-1905, 1907, 1911, 1914. (8 HOM seasons)

14. Bob Caruthers – I believe that I had been applying too harsh an AA discount, and further undervaluing the 1880’s pitchers. I think ranking this proves I don’t have an irrational bias against him. He doesn’t quite measure up to Mullane on my career-weighted system, but his prime finally gets him on the ballot. MVP candidate 1885-1889, All-Star candidate 1890-1892. (8 HOM seasons)

15. Fielder Jones Doesn't seem too much different from Kelley or Duffy, when you factor in his fielding. MVP candidate 1908 (his last real year). All-Star candidate 1896-1898, 1900-1907. (12 HOM seasons)

MISSING OUT

16-20 – Leach, Doyle, Petway, Pike, Willis
21-25 – Tinker, C. Jones, Konetchy, Griffin, Long
26-30 – Thomas, Tiernan, Williamson, Evers, Thompson
31-34 – Childs, Bond, Waddell, Griffith

Lip Pike – Due to reconsiderations of 1880’s pitchers, Number 19 on my ballot now. MVP candidate 1876 All-Sstar candidate 1871-75, 1877-78. (7 HOM seasons)

Sam Thompson – Most of the top returnees have now made my ballot. Thompson (now #31) is probably not one of them. I see Thompson as below Pike, Thomas, Griffin, Tiernan, Charley Jones, and the OF on my ballot, so he may not quite get there. MVP candidate 1887, 1895, All-Star candidate 1886, 1889-1894. (9 HOM seasons)

Clark Griffith – Literally, he finished 10th among returnees. Had a relatively short productive career, and didn’t have nearly the peak of a Caruthers, Walsh, or even Waddell. All-Star candidate 1894-1901 (8 HOM seasons)

Rube Waddell – Close enough to comment. HOM 1902-1905, but too erratic the rest of the time. If four years did it for me, Hughie Jennings would be closer to my ballot. MVP candidate 1902, 1905, All-Star candidate 1901, 1903-04, 1906-08 (8 HOM seasons)
   15. jhwinfrey Posted: June 28, 2004 at 03:55 PM (#703418)
My 1929 PHoM inductees are Pete Hill and Frank Baker.

1. Mickey Welch--(1,1,1) He was a 9-time 20-game winner. Not a fluke. PHoM in 1926.
2. Bob Caruthers--(4,5,4) He's been getting some more attention in the discussion threads...Is this his year? PHoM in 1928.
3. Dickey Pearce--(7,4,3) We only have a few "truly great" eligibles to work with. Pearce is one of them. PHoM in 1927.
4. Jake Beckley--(6,3,5) Simply a long, solid career. PHom in 1927.
5. Sam Thompson--(8,6,7) In my view, the top slugger available. PHoM in 1910.
6. Rube Waddell--(5,8,8) A "unique" pitcher, which means he was either very good or very bad. He was the former, striking out a lot of batters in one of the tougher eras to do so.
7. Roger Breshnahan--(9,11,9) The bottom line is that he was the premier catcher of his era.
8. Addie Joss--(10,9,10) I like long career players, but Joss' dominance is impossible for me to ignore.
9. Rube Foster--(nr) Foster makes a big jump as I reconsider his playing career. I think putting him a step below Joss is about right.
10. Lip Pike--(13,14,12) In my view, Pike is the best of the remaining center fielders. He moves up by default.
11. Spotswood Poles--(ne) I'm waiting for data that would let me put Poles ahead of Pike. I haven't seen it yet...
12. Bill Monroe--(15,nr,14) Monroe seems likely to lurk in the 10-20 range of my ballot for a long time. And that seems about right.
13. George Van Haltren--(14,15,13) Not quite as dominant a player as Pike was, but still very solid.
14. Tony Mullane--(12,13,11) I continue to be Mullane's best friend. I won't let the ambidextrous wonder die.
15. Bobby Wallace--(nr, 15) Definitely an intriguing player, and he belongs in the top 15, but I'm rooting for Thompson and Caruthers to beat him into the HoM. Of course, I also root for the Royals...

Off Ballot, in order.
16: Jimmy Sheckard--Maybe I'm not taking his defensive value into account enough, but I can't see putting him ahead of the outfielders on my ballot. He'll probably be on my 1930 slate.
19-20: Petway, Leach, Ryan, Duffy
21-25: Doyle, Griffith, Cravath, Willis, Konetchy
26-30: Browning, Cicotte, Evers, Milan, Huggins
31-35: Childs, Bush, Jennings, Vaughn, Sallee
   16. TomH Posted: June 28, 2004 at 06:05 PM (#703626)
1929 Ballot
review of Hanrahan’s value system: career value with a fairly high replacement level (slightly below average). Something like WARP3 minus 2.5 wins per full year, or WS minus 13 per year adjusted for league quality, or OPS+ over 95 adjusted for defense and timeline and maybe speed. I don’t believe in much extra value for “peak”. Some subjective estimating of ability across time and place.

Personally disappointed if we don’t honor:
1-Clark Griffith (2)
He Won Lots of Games, Pitching for Lousy Teams, even often Facing the Toughest Opponents. Where Is The Love?
2-Sam Thompson (3)
Best full-career Hitter. Add a bit to his career totals for lost time before age 25, and make an educated guess at how he would hit in the live ball era, and he’s a monster
3-Bobby Wallace (4)
Good hitter, good hands, good range. Dave Concepcion with more power (often among the RBI leaders), and he pitched well for 2 years also.
4-Lip Pike (5)
Even with WARP’s timelining, his adjEqA is .300 (better than most players on the ballot); not bad for a guy who played the infield as well as CF. WS and OPS+ love him. The more “very good” OFers who come along, the more Mister Pike stands out.

Like to see honored:

5-Bob Caruthers (8)
Great, great W-L record result of his fine pitching AND bat. But a short career, in a weaker league. And his taste in teammates is unsurpassed; when he WASN’T pitching, they still won over 60% of their games.
6-George Van Haltren (6)
Hit. Ran. Played defense. Pitched. Long career. Played in one-league 1890s. Solidly on my ballot.

After this, don’t much care either way:
7-Rube Waddell (9)
Six time leader in KOs, 3 ERA+ titles. Unearned runs drag him down a bit.
8-Jimmy Sheckard (10)
9-Addie Joss (12)
Bonus points for his great pennant exploits.
10-Ed Williamson (13)
Decent hitter. Great defense. Underrepresented position, and many of the guys he played with and against thought he was the best. I don’t penalize him for his poor fielding when he was pressed to play shortstop.
11-Hughie Jennings (14)
12-John McGraw (15)
I’m a career voter, but Hughie and Mugsy accomplished more in a few years than most others did in many.

Three guys added to the bottom this week----
13-Roger Bresnahan (off)
A nod to position scarcity. A great player when he was on the field. Kinda like the two guys above him.
14-Dickey Pearce (off)
Dominating a game in the N.Y. City area of the country while many guys are fighting a war – well, I’m still on the fence.
15-Jake Beckley (off)
Somewhere between Doggie Perez and Fred the Crime Dog McGriff. He’ll have a Ruff time getting the HoM, though.

Barely missing this week is Cupid Childs.

OFF - Jim McCormick (11 last week)
Awesome 56+ Wins Above Team.
But, maybe I’ve over-extrapolated for the lack of support. Looking at his #s afresh this week, they sure don’t jump out as HoM-like, and we’ve honored the hurlers of his era pretty well already. Sorry, all three of you FOJM, I have abandoned ship.

Also hovering near the edge: R Foster, Jimmy "not quite Van Haltren" Ryan, H Duffy, L Doyle, C Jones, B Monroe.

New guys: Spots Poles just doesn’t look like one of the 20 top Negro League players, and Petway is below him.

I will be both professionally and personally pretty busy, and thus very quiet on this board, for at least a week.
   17. sunnyday2 Posted: June 28, 2004 at 06:33 PM (#703665)
Some changes this week, though not at the very top. But I'm reverting back to more peak and less career (but with a "prime" category also heavily weighted). Top 9 + Wallace already in PHoM.

Already in PHoM or very likely before 1934

1. Dickey Pearce (eligible 32 years now--only my ballot 23 times--peak on my ballot at #1 6 times)--Played baseball. Ozzie Smith is his comp, but Dickey was a better hitter.

2. Bob Caruthers (31-22-1)--Unique talent, biggest star in the AA.

3. Sam Thompson (28-28-1 2X)--Not a short career compared to peers (at the time) and comps (HoM candidates not among the N-Bs). I'm not a big fan of OPS+ but in Sam's case it is a good shorthand.

4. Hughie Jennings (22-22-4)--Highest peak of any post-NA 19th century position player.

5. Lip Pike (32-30-5)--Another not-short career and OPS+ shorthand guy.

6. Tommy Bond (32-14-6)--This is after a 50% discount (the remainder goes to his fielders). Yes, a product of his times which required him to throw all those innings and blow out his arm. I figure those two things cancel out and his value remains.

(6a. Joe McGinnity joins Bond in entering PHoM this year.)

7. Charley Jones (32-19-5)--OPS+ shorthand.

(7a. Jimmy Collins)

8. Cupid Childs (23-13-8)--'91 is discounted; hey, it's just one year.

9. Ed Williamson (32-21-6)--Jimmy Collins is his comp. I don't see how his 27 HR in '84 actually hurt his team.

Mostly not in my PHoM yet, but someday

10. Larry Doyle (4-3-10)--Unless the NL was really that bad?

(10a. Frank Grant)

11. Rube Foster (7-1-11)--Whoever said that his contemporaries probably would have scoffed at the idea that Pete Hill was better, well, that snapped the light on for me.

12. Jim McCormick (32-17-4)--Like Bond, a product of his times, but aren't we all.

13. Bobby Wallace (10-6-5)--Got him into my PHoM a little too fast, decided his lack of peak should move him down, but if he goes into the HoM this year, that's ok.

14. Bill Monroe (10-7-12)--About equal to Grant.

15. Spot Poles (new)--As a peak voter, I see him substantially equal to Pete Hill. Will make my PHoM someday.

Probably not PHoMers, but who knows?

16. Pete Browning, (16a-b-c-d. Joe Kelley, pete Hill, Sherry Magee, Harry Stovey--from Poles to Duffy, this is where the OF glut mostly goes, but see also #28 & 35 and Tiernan is close, too) 17. Jimmy Sheckard, 18. Fred Dunlap, 19. Hugh Duffy, 20. Rube Waddell (20a. Eddie Plank trails the teammate with the peak), 21. Tommy Leach, 22. Sol White, 23. Mickey Welch, 24. Harry Davis, 25. Roger Bresnahan (25a. Ezra Sutton--no idea where he goes)

Almost surely not PHoMers, but good enough to think about

26. Joe Tinker, 27. Jim Whitney, 28. George Van Haltren, 29. Addie Joss, 30. Herman Long, 31. Johnny Evers, 32. Frank Chance, 33. Jake Beckley, 34. Clark Griffith, 35. Jimmy Ryan, 36. Vic Willis, 37. Eddie Cicotte, 38. Tony Mullane, 39. John Clapp, 40. Bill Bradley
   18. Jim Sp Posted: June 28, 2004 at 07:08 PM (#703712)
Doyle is my #1, but with some misgivings. His hitting is legitimately outstanding, he played 2nd base, and the competition on the ballot is not strong. C+ defender by Win Shares, terrible by WARP. My rating of Doyle I think is out of sync with the electorate because I don’t discount the NL during this time, I treat 2nd base as a defensive bonus position until 1920, and I use Win Shares defensive ratings not WARP.

1)Doyle— Compare to contemporary George Cutshaw, who was a regular 2B for 11 years with an OPS+ of 86. 2B became a predominantly hitters position in the 20’s and 30’s, not the teens. Doyle’s 126 OPS+ at 2B is only exceeded by Hornsby, Lajoie, Collins, Morgan, Robinson, Richardson, and Dunlap. #19 all time in innings at 2B. Regularly in the 2B defensive Win Shares leaders, WS Gold Glove in 1917. Top 10 in Win Shares 1909-12, 1915.
2)Beckley—I’m no longer Beckley’s best friend, but close. Keeler’s election convinced me to stop downgrading Beckley. Beckley is the better fielder, about the same as a hitter for his career, and at an underrepresented position that with more defensive value. Behind the big 3, much better than any other dead-ball 1B. Win Shares best fielder at 1B in 1893, 1895, 1899, and 1900. Add in 2930 hits, with power and walks. No peak but a lot of consistent production.
3)Waddell—Waddell has a run of 7 years (1902-1908) in which he was blowing people away, striking out people at rate that is extremely high for the era. Each year allowing at least 20% fewer runs than an average pitcher, in three of those years with an ERA+ over 165. 134 ERA+ in 3000 IP is worthy, his W/L record isn’t impressive because his run support wasn’t impressive. A seven year peak for a pitcher is much more rare than a seven year peak for a hitter, I give the short peak pitchers a lot more credit than the short peak hitters.
4)Wallace—long career, good hitter, played shortstop well, and gets a boost for his pitching. A shortstop with a long career who can hit belongs in the HoM.
5)Cravath— Great peak, great high minor league play.
6)Bill Monroe—Riley’s Biographical Encylopedia likes him a lot.
7)Bresnahan--Best hitting year was as a CF, not a C, so that hurts him a bit.
8)Griffith—Comp is Marichal, plus he could hit.
9)Lave Cross—great fielder. Caught some too. Only hit well in weak leagues, but still that’s a lot of career value…2645 career hits with a lot of defensive value. All time leader in Win Shares / 1000 innings at 3B.
10)Joss—Comp is Koufax…a terrible hitter.
11)Pearce—placement is quite subjective, putting him above Childs and McGraw feels right.
12)Welch— Better than Galvin. His 1885 season (44-11, 1.66 ERA, 492 IP) is a great peak year, he had 3 other great years (1884, 1888, 1889) plus another 6 good seasons. Welch played every year in the toughest league. He could hit a little (68 OPS+). Career 307-210…he deserves some of the credit for that.
13)Leach--Great fielder at both 3B and CF. Historically a unique player, if only he hit a little better. Or had stayed at 3B.
14)Childs—Discounting his domination of the 1890 AA. Great peak but not a long enough career.
15)Cicotte—Could rank higher, but I have no enthusiasm for that.


Sam Thompson—short career hurts him, but the man could hit.
Bob Caruthers— Short career, and AA discount hurts him. See also Tony Mullane, Silver King, Guy Hecker, Jack Stivetts, Dave Foutz, and Will White.
Sheckard--Not quite. On the top of the outfield glut, just off the ballot.
Lip Pike-- The quality of competition was not good. I think we’ve taken enough of the 1870’s crowd.
Van HaltrenGood player, part of the OF glut with Ryan and Duffy.
RyanI place him equal with VanHaltren, which puts him off the ballot.
   19. jsmith10294 Posted: June 28, 2004 at 07:45 PM (#703763)
I am new to this website and I was wondering what it is. Can someone please tell me what it is and what I need to do to enter it.
   20. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 28, 2004 at 08:09 PM (#703791)
Hi, jsmith10294!

Here are some threads you should look at:

Our Constitution

Hall of Merit Plaque Room

Hall of Merit Links

If you wish to submit a ballot, check how the ballots are set up on this page, then submit a preliminary one on the 1929 Ballot Discussion page. If there are no problems or the problems have been rectified, then you can submit your final ballot on this page. The election ends next Monday at 5PM (PCT).

Please be respectful of all eras. Our constitution requires us to take a long, hard look at Negro League players and pre-National Association players. Don't be surprised if someone questions one or a couple of your selections. It's just our version of "peer review" so as to learn something new or to highlight something that you may have missed.

If you have any further questions, don't be afraid to ask. If you're knowledgeable about baseball history and wish to elect the most qualified players available, than this is the place to be.
   21. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: June 28, 2004 at 08:16 PM (#703806)
1929 ballot. Did some substantial readjusting from aroudn 10-25 slots over the last week or two. Here's the top 15:

1. Jimmy Sheckard (2,1,1). Those Cubs remind me of the Beatles. A bunch of tremendous talents all in their primes together - but when those glory years were done, the decline phases of the different members wasn't nearly as strong as one would've guessed. Sheckard's the only exception. He's the only guy to not only have a strong prime, but also a heckuva career. Strong offense & great defense.

2. Bobby Wallace (6,4,3). The things you learn in the HoM. . . . This guy wasn't even on my radar, but his defensive value - though hidden because he split time between SS & 3B was very high both in terms of peak & career value. He was to SS offense what Beckley was to 1Bman offense. And he could pitch a little. I keep going back & forth between if he or Jake was better. Today, I'm leaning toward Bobby.

3. Jake Beckley (5,5,4). Began as the best non-ABC first basemen in the league & remained the best of the very good for almost two full decades as a starter. Even with his non-peak he was the best 1Bman in baseball at the turn of the century for a few years. 1 OPS+ under 100 in his first 18 seasons.

4. Dickey Pearce (7,6,5). Best baseball player born during James Madison's lifetime.

5. Mickey Welch (8,7,6). Thank you retrosheet. Turns out he earned those 300 wins. Offensive support only gave him 3-4 wins. Defensive support, though a little above average, was actually worse the defensive support of all major non-Galvin pitchers in the 1880s. Usually matched up against tougher opposing pitchers when he & Keefe were on the same team. In 1885, against the Cubs, he faced off against John Clarkson 7 times & won every game.

6. Clark Griffith (12,12,8). Personal favorite 1890s pitcher. Nice career, nice prime. The median winning percentage of his opponent is the highest of the four pitchers I've got on the ballot. Leaps ahead of BC as I'm more impressed by the level of competition he faced & his durability. Jumps a little due to periodic reevaluation

7. Tommy Leach (10,10,9). Mutlitalented player. Terrific defense at two positions & he was a good hitter. Fine player for a long time.

8. Sam Thompson (9,9,10). Could hit a little. And Fred Astaire could dance a little.

9. George Van Haltren (13,13,12). Very good player for an extended period of time who could do numerous things well. Nice career. Nice peak. Could pitch.

10 Jimmy Ryan (14,14,13). GVH without the ability to pitch.

11. Bob Caruthers (11,11,11). In his favor: His great W/L percentage, the fact that even adjusting for his run support leaves him with a great W/L record, & his bat. He could dominate. Downside: an innings problem - both in seasons (where he rarely ranked that high) & career IP; his opponents had a low median winning percentage, & he pitched in the AA. Pluses get him on the list, but negatives keep him low on it & cause him to drop below some guys who lasted a little longer.

12 Cupid Childs (17,15,14). Looking at him again & I think he's better than the infielders I was putting just above him. Good fielder who had a great run & is very impressive (for a 2Ber) OPS+ undervalues his offense because he's so OBP-centric. The D & OBP keep him above Larry Doyle.

13. Larry Doyle (18,18,16). Don't have much time this or next week to take a closer look, so I'm leaving him here - he could move up when I have the time to really look at him more. Looking at him again, I'd say he's about as close to Childs as Ryan is to GVH, so they're now also yoked together.

14. Charlie Jones (19,19,17). Great hitter for a while. First really good Deep Southerner (first Deep Southerner of any type?) I get the feeling he would have been an NA standout from 1871/2 if he'd been born in Pennsylvania. Looks more like Sam Thompson every time I look at him.

15. Gavvy Cravvath (20,20,19). Toughie to figure. The late start of this CAer reminds me of the late start of the above NCer. Gets some minor league credit, but loses some due to park factors (a homer champion hitting all his homers at home? Sure you could argue that it shows he's really taking full advantage of his home park, but I'd like to see my sluggers be able to hit the ball in other parks also. In trying to weigh out the different factors, I'll give him enough credit for his minor league days to just get him on the ballot.

Off-ballot top ten returners:
19. Lip Pike (36,39,29). Keeps rising & rising. Now stuck in a glut of OFers at the edge of the ballot that could best be described as: "If only they'd been that good for a few more years. . ."
Off-ballot productions present:
16-20: Pete Browning, Bill Monroe, Spot Poles, Lip Pike, Joe Tinker.
21-25. Herman Long, Addie Joss, Eddie Cicotte, Ed Williamson, Lave Cross.
26-30. Rube Waddell, Hugh Duffy, Tommy Bond, Silver King, Bruce Petway.
31-35. Johnny Evers, Jack Clement, Rube Foster, Hippo Vaughn, Ed Konetchy.
36-40. Charlie Buffington, Roger Bresnahan, Harry Davis, John McGraw, Vic Willis.
41-43. Tony Mullane, Hughie Jennings, Frank Chance, Roy Thomas, Jim McCormick.
   22. Jeff M Posted: June 28, 2004 at 09:06 PM (#703893)
Chris J (or anyone else):

I'm trying to conceptualize your RSI metric a little better and put it in context. Suppose a pitcher has a lot of wins and the RSI shows that he was not the beneficiary of extraordinary run support. But suppose the ERA+ numbers or linear weights numbers show that his ERA was only about 10-15% better than the league on average (so in terms of ERA he wasn't dominant).

How did he get all the wins? Does it mean he was doing just enough to win? Does it mean his teammates were hitting just well enough to win?

Put another way, if he has average run support and his ERA is 10-15% better than the league, shouldn't he realistically win only about 10-15% more games than average? If he wins more, how?

Could it be that he rarely won in a blowout, but instead, got relatively consistent, though not extraordinary, run support? Do your numbers allow you to calculate the standard deviation of the run support a pitcher received?

I'm not reacting to your ballot with this comment. Seeing your name just prompted the lingering question.
   23. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: June 28, 2004 at 09:10 PM (#703900)
JeffM,

I'll answer you in the discussion thread.
   24. Jeff M Posted: June 28, 2004 at 09:14 PM (#703906)
Yeah, should have posted the question there. Sorry.
   25. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 28, 2004 at 09:28 PM (#703929)
Yeah, should have posted the question there. Sorry.

Shoulda, coulda, woulda. Sorry, but you will now feel the wrath of INTERIM COMMISSIONER!

Okay, I really can't punish you. Carry on. :-)
   26. karlmagnus Posted: June 28, 2004 at 09:36 PM (#703945)
Now you know how Shoeless Joe felt, subject to the wrath of Kenesaw Mountain Murphy! :-))
   27. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 28, 2004 at 09:44 PM (#703954)
Now you know how Shoeless Joe felt, subject to the wrath of Kenesaw Mountain Murphy! :-))

LOL

Nah, too much of a marshmallow to follow in his footsteps.
   28. OCF Posted: June 28, 2004 at 11:11 PM (#704019)
1929 ballot. This time, I'm including more than the briefest argument only in cases where the rating reflects a change from my previous. We've been discussing these same guys for a long, long time.

1. Jimmy Sheckard (3, 3, 2, 2, 2) No one thing - a broad base of skills.
2. Larry Doyle (--, 3, 3, 3) Big hitter in low scoring times. Mediocre defense, but occupied the position for a long time.
3. Bobby Wallace (5, 4, 4, 4, 4) Fairly long career. Defense good (but not Tinker or Long), offense good.
4. Rube Waddell (10, 9, 9, 7, 6) RA+ PythPat 200-129. Big-game pitcher.
5. Mickey Welch (-, 15, 15, 14, 11) Moving up. Another big-game pitcher, and as Chris J. suggests, maybe he really did earn those 300 wins.
6. Jimmy Ryan (11, 10, 10, 8, 7)
7. Hugh Duffy (12, 11, 11, 9, 8)
8. George Van Haltren (13, 12, 12, 10, 9)
9. Roger Bresnahan (14, 13, 13, 11, 10) Only catcher on the ballot.
10. Gavy Cravath (--, 8, 12, 11)
11. Vic Willis (15, 14, 14, 13, 12) Defense adjusted RA+ PythPat 248-196.
12. Johnny Evers (16, 16, 16, 15, 14) Now come my own windmills to tilt at. I know the rest of you don't see it, but ...
13. Frank Chance (17, 17, 17, 16, 15)
14. Joe Tinker (20, 19, 19, 19, 18) Defense at SS does matter, here and next.
15. Herman Long (24, 25, 25, _, 25) Decided to move him way up. The key man in a great team defense. Scored some runs, too - twice over 100 R*.
16. Roy Thomas (18, 18, 18, 17, 16)
17. Clark Griffith (8, 5, 5, 18, 17) RA+ PythPat of 203-146.
18. Jake Beckley (20, 20, 20, 20, 19)
19. Sam Thompson (22, 21, 21, 21, 22, 20)
20. Spotswood Poles (new) Everyone on the ballot is so close together. There's no way to be sure that he wasn't better than, say, Ryan, Van Haltren, and Duffy. We do know he wasn't comparable to Torriente, not that that's the issue at the moment.
21. Andrew Foster (23, 22, 22, 22, 23, 21) Strictly as a pitcher, best guess is somewhere on the McGinnity-Waddell-Chesbro scale. Effective career seems to be brief. As an owner/organizer, has great value.
22. Hughie Jennings (23, 23, 23, 24, 22) If I completely trusted his defensive stats, I'd have him higher.
23. Bob Caruthers (-, 24, 24, 25, 23)
24. Tommy Leach (----, 24)
25. Dickey Pearce (-----)
   29. TheGoodSamaritan Posted: June 29, 2004 at 05:00 AM (#704232)
1929 Vote:

01. Bobby Wallace SS - Using a combo of career WARP3 and a 5 consecutive years peak WARP3, I have Wallace being more qualified for the HoM than HoMers Jack Glasscock and Monte Ward. When Hans Wagner was moved to shortstop full-time, Wagner said that he tried to copy Wallace's fielding style, implying that Wallace was considered the best-fielding shortstop of his time.

02. Bill Monroe 2B - I have been thinking about Monroe for some time now. I might be wrong, but if there is only one Negro League second baseman that I could elect into the HoM, it probably would be Monroe. When I think of Bingo DeMoss or Newt Allen, I think of players like Red Schoendienst, Nellie Fox or Frank White. Great career players, very good chance to get into the HoM, but not impact players. When I think of Monroe, I think of a Charlie Gehringer who played in the deadball era, somebody who is a force in his league. He is one of the few 2B of the Negro League that is considered one of the best player of the entire league. Dirk Knemeyer wrote that "Monroe stands with John Henry Lloyd as the finest Negro League players of their generation."

03. Bob Caruthers SP - The last great 19th century pitcher to not make it into the HOM.

04. Spotswood Poles CF - Over in the discussion page for Poles, there seems (in my view) to be a lot of weight placed on the theoretical numbers that the fine folks at i9s.org. I am sure that they came up with the numbers based on sound reasonings, but they are still theoretical numbers; numbers that I can't trust enough to wipe out the all the favorable subjective reviews. 4th greatest Negro League CF? Sounds about right. Probably was the same kind of player as Cool Papa Bell. Was nicknamed "the Black Ty Cobb" (which I am sure that the real Ty Cobb hated) and served in the 369th Infantry, United States Army in 1917 at the age of thirty, and earned five battle stars and a Purple Heart while fighting in France.

05. Jimmy Sheckard LF - None of the outfielders on the ballot -- Duffy, Van Haltren, Ryan, Thompson, Tiernan, Jones -- really stands out. I have Sheckard being the best of the bunch, but not by a lot.

06. Jimmy Ryan CF - His WARP numbers are almost the same as the average HoM CF already voted in. Very close in value to Van Haltren.

07. George Van Haltren CF

08. Sam Thompson RF

09. Roger Bresnahan C - He is the classic Win Shares Love Him, WARP Hate Him player (along with Hugh Duffy and Sherry Magee). The WARP numbers for him are not that good because they have him to be very much below average fielder at a FRAA of -119. Win Shares has Bresnahan to be a C+ fielder, which I think is about average. The peak WARP numbers for Bresnahan are also very low. OTOH Win Shares loves Bresnahan as seen with his high ranking as the #16 all-time best catcher of all time, one slot above Buck Ewing, and his Win Shares per 648 PA. A person named Cyril Morong did a ranking of all the players with 5000 PA by their Win Shares per 648 PA and Bresnahan is ranked 6th in the catcher's list. Bresnahan is also ranked 45th(!) overall in Win Shares per 648 PA over players like Ed Delahanty (27.41), Roger Connor (26.60), Hughie Jennings (24.52) and Charlie Bennett (23.60).

10. Mike Tiernan RF

11. Rube Foster SP - I have Foster ranked about the 9th greatest pitcher in Negro League history. Foster will get in the 'builders' wing of the HoM (if there is one), but right now I don't have him being a strong candidate as a player to get into the HoM for at least a decade or so.

12. Eddie Cicotte SP

13. Fielder Jones CF

14. Ray Chapman SS

15. Clark Griffith SP

Pearce, Beckley, Waddell, Pike and Petway all missed my ballot.
   30. Patrick W Posted: June 29, 2004 at 11:01 AM (#704336)
1929: Small bumps & drops in the middle of the ballot. Second year in a row, a oldie-but-goodie pops up at 15.

1. Bobby Wallace (1), StL. (A), SS (‘94-‘14) (1920) – We haven’t turned away anyone with 100 WARP3 yet.
2. Sam Thompson (2), Phila.(N), RF (‘85-‘98) (1902) – Rating systems should recognize hitters in a pitcher-dominated era and pitchers in a hitters’ era, but they should not over-penalize hitters in a hitters’ era or pitchers in a pitchers’ era.
3. Jimmy Ryan (3), Chic.(N), CF / RF (‘85-‘03) (1926)
4. Jimmy Sheckard (4), Bkn.–Chic. (N), LF / RF (‘97-‘13) (1919)
5. George Van Haltren (5), NY(N), CF / LF (’87-’03) (1926) – Decided that offense should be the tiebreaker for these three. They’re all in my HOM, so the order doesn’t mean that much to me.
6. Jake Beckley (8), Pitt. – Cinc.(N), 1B (’88-’07) (1929) – We’re into the Hoover years, so it’s appropriate that my electees are kind of depressing. Solid numbers, but obviously not an exciting pick.
--. Sherry Magee, Phila. (N), LF (’04-’19) (1929) Still went in too fast, but I stop complaining now.
7. Fielder Jones (7), Chic.(A), CF / RF (’96-’08) – A slight pause before I completely diverge my HOM from the rest of you. My rationale for dropping him below Magee is a lack of faith in the AL-NL difficulty factors. For balance between offense & defense, only Sheckard rates with Jones among outfielders.
8. Eddie Cicotte (10), Chic. (A), SP (’08-’20) – Borderline hitters this year, borderline pitchers coming up. Didn’t do himself any favors, of course.
--. Mordecai Brown, Chic. (N), SP (’03-’16) – Not as good as Cicotte, but he’ll make it.
--. Joe Start, Atlantic-Bkn (NABBP)-N.Y.Mut.(NL), 1B (‘60-’86) – Carry that weight.
9. Clark Griffith (11), Chic. (N) - NY (A), SP (’91-’14) – Looking at McGinnity, I see Griffith as the better of the two. I was overlooking the hitting stats earlier - Griffith wasn’t killing his team at the plate like the other two, so he becomes the 2nd best pitcher on the ballot.
10. Spotswood Poles (n/a), N.Y. Lincoln (--), CF (‘09-‘23) – MLE’s say he’s close to, but better than, Monroe in hitting. Right now, I’m not considering how he rates to Santop or Torriente (or others) since they are not eligible. But even if he doesn’t make it during this drought period, I don’t see him going away.
11. Bill Monroe (9), Phila. – Bkn. (--), 2B / 1B (‘96-‘14) – With no defensive numbers, does he rate above Poles simply for being a 2B? Not too far below Johnson & Hill.
12. Cupid Childs (12), Clev. (N), 2B (’90-’01) – Looks good under peak, even with fielding discount.
13. Rube Waddell (13), Bost. (N), SP (’97-’09) – In my opinion, Rube was the best pitcher among the eligible in terms of preventing runs, but because he didn’t last as long as the others Cicotte & Griffith pass him in overall value.
--. Joe McGinnity, NY(N), SP (‘99-‘08) –
14. Lave Cross (15), Phila.(N,A), 3B (’87-’07) – Love those fielding runs. Just beats out Long.
15. Pete Browning (--),Lou. (AA), CF / LF (’82-’93) – This spot might be better served by Griffin or Long, but the group has soundly rejected them and I can make no persuasive argument that you all are wrong. I still have Griffin ahead of Duffy by the slimmest of margins, so Duffy cannot be 15. I'm not enamored with some of the pitchers I am giving points to now, but clearly (to me) the pitching below McGinnity & Waddell is of a significantly lesser quality. So onto the “small sample / less than ideal competition” list: I’m a sucker for EQA and Browning is the poster child for EQA, even adjusted for competition. Just ahead of Pike.


Bob Caruthers – Same reason as last time. Might be worthy of 6 points by ’32.

Dickey Pearce – Same reason as last time.

Lip Pike – FWIW, I’d vote for him before Pearce. Double his recorded career value to account for ’66-’70, adjust for season lengths and reduce timeline penalties, he is still short. Not unworthy.

Caruthers, Pearce & Pike are in last year’s top ten, but not in my top 15.
   31. Jeff M Posted: June 29, 2004 at 12:32 PM (#704348)
Roger Bresnahan C - ....The WARP numbers for him are not that good because they have him to be very much below average fielder at a FRAA of -119.

Joe Dimino has been arguing that we should be using FRAA in the WARP rating, rather than FRAR because replacement is too low. That might be right, but there's such a vast difference between FRAR and FRAA, I've been unwilling to make that leap. Instead, I've been using something in between -- subtracting from WARP 1/2 the difference between FRAR and FRAA (with the difference divided by 9). Basically, I've tried to reset the replacement level somewhere between WARP's fielding replacement level and WARP's average.

I don't believe in timelining, so using the WARP1 FRAR and FRAA, I'd have Bresnahan at 112 FRAW (fielding runs above whatever), which lies in the middle of FRAR and FRAA. Resetting the replacement level that way would take away about 12.5 of his total WARP1.

If for some reason I decided to timeline (which I won't), his FRAW would be basically 0 and he would lose 13.1 of his already-substantially-reduced WARP (though he can't really complain, when there are guys like Browning who lose 1/2 their overall value in the translation from WARP1 to WARP2 -- plus, Bresnahan is dead, and dead guys don't complain).
   32. Al Peterson Posted: June 29, 2004 at 01:24 PM (#704381)
1929 ballot. This is quite the lull period for top flite candidates. Everyone has something to bring out like and dislike - guess that makes for the fun of voting.

1. Sam Thompson (2). In the 11 years between 1886 and 1896 Big Sam was top 10 in league in total bases 9 times, RBIs 9 times, and extra base hits 10 times. He's #32 in Black Ink all-time, #38 in Grey Ink all-time. These might be rough statistical measures to use but it shows a level of dominance that sticks out with the candidates available. .308 EQA, .684 OWP, man could hit a little. OF defense is questioned whether good or bad so I split the difference on that.

2. Jimmy Sheckard (5). The pool is shallow when I've got this guy 2nd. Did many things above average which gives him a good deal of value to his teams. Nice World Series in 1906 - went 0 for 21!!

3. Jimmy Ryan (4). At the end of the deadball era in 1919, Ryan was tied for 4th all-time in HRs. Not too shabby. Giving credit of CF being more valuable than LF in terms of defensive spectrum. Being very good for long periods of time gets some points from me.

4. Rube Waddell (6). Won six straight strikeout titles, top 10 in Ks per 9 innings 10 straight years - dominance you don't get everyday. His 1902 season: 12-8 out in LA to start season, brought back to Philly by Connie Mack in June and went 24-7. That's a lot of pitching. Unique in that he controlled the game, via strikeouts, at a time when the ball was always put in play during the dead-ball era.

5. George Van Haltren (7). Similar arguments to Ryan, just a little less to them.

6. Pete Browning (8). If we're looking for an 1880s ballplayer this could be your man. Even with league discounts he swung some mean lumber. Career OPS+ = 162 which puts him in company with names like Foxx, McGwire, Frank Thomas. Discount it because of AA play? At the OPS+ = 147 level you're talking Heilmann, McCovey, and Schmidt. That's some pretty lofty company. Batting Average Placement within league 1882-1891: 1, 2, 3, 1, 2, 2, 3, -, 1, 3. Had a career .341 average in a league environment of .257 . Offensive Winning Percentage - .745. His guy was a WOW when hitting. He might not be the ideal multi-dimensional player but when you are this much an outlier at part of the game its going to get a bonus from me.

7. John McGraw (9). Limited playing time but what he did with it is nonetheless outstanding. Positional bump as well. Cons include just not playing enough but was on base all the time when participating.

8. Cupid Childs (10). He's always bounced between being on the ballot and off. I'm keeping a gap between him and Doyle as I feel he was the better of the two.

9. Bob Caruthers (11). My tug-of-war with his value continues. I'm more sure now that if push came to shove Freedom Bob deserves in before the rest below him. Affected pennant hopes greatly per individual year with his play yet due to short career couldn't affect a large number of pennants.

10. Dickey Pearce (13). Impressed by the fact he was a regular in the NA at an age that was very old compared to most players. The reviews from early baseball are glowing - the issue of competition level at an unorganized, evolving time is frustrating. I consider the game before 1865 questionable to say the least. David Foss sending out the numbers from those early years was interesting but hard facts? I'm a bit skeptical...

11. Jake Beckley (12). Tougher and tougher to ignore with dearth of 1B for a number of years; career totals eventually add up to quite the player despite lack of peak. Not being one of the ABC trio at 1st base doesn't mean you were bad.

12. Hughie Jennings (17). Being the best player in the game, even for just a couple of years, can squeak you on the ballot.

13. Gavvy Cravath (15). Get's a lift from noteworthy performance in minors between stints in the majors to go along with peak achievement at the major league level at an advanced age. Ten years too early to reap benefits of the lively ball.

14. Larry Doyle (22). Between Childs and Dunlap, am more comfortable giving him a boost over the fielding numbers presented. He might have been a hack in the field but to stay at 2B that many years without somebody saying "Get that stiff outta there" would be tricky to do.

15. Tommy Leach (16). I'll follow a player deemed poor defensively with a very good gloveman. 3B and CF; what a weird combination.

Who's on the outside looking in this year?

16. Roger Bresnahan.
17. Hugh Duffy (14).
18. Bobby Wallace. A lot like Beckley in having much career value, lacking peak. Shortstops around his time included HOMers Dahlen, Davis, Wagner, Home Run Johnson, eligible Jennings, and soon eligible Pop Lloyd. That's a bunch that put Wallace at the wrong end of a pecking order.
19. Tony Mullane.
20. Spotswood Poles (-). His statistical projections and standing in comtemporary rankings lead to a lower start than some recent NL electees.
21. Clark Griffith. The many pitching metrics presented show he's in the mix as HOM worthy. His pitching pattern (sparingly in many years) means lower effect on individual pennant races.
22. Rube Foster. 23. Frank Chance. 24. Mickey Welch. 25. Mike Tiernan. 26. Ed Ciccotte. 27. Charley Jones. 28. Fielder Jones.
29. Lip Pike. For the time of baseball before 1885 I'd prefer Pearce or Charley Jones over the Lipster. Maybe even Harry Wright if push came to shove.
30-36: Willis, Griffin, McCormick, Dunlap, Evers, Konetchy, Long
   33. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: June 29, 2004 at 02:24 PM (#704420)
My system is in a transitional phase for this ballot, so the explanations of rankings will be a little thinner than previous years (and years to come).

1. Bob Caruthers
I know WS may overrate 1880’s pitchers, but after applying the AA discount he tops out at 40 pitching WS for a season, which seems reasonable. As a two-way player matched only by the transitional Babe Ruth, Caruthers’ 1885-89 peak just dominates everyone else. My 287 calculated season length adjusted Win Shares over those five years are almost silly, but I think that shows just how much of an outlier this guy was—he was the best hitter and the best pitcher in his league in ’86, and the best pitcher and second-best hitter in ’87. WARP loves his peak too, and he actually tops the ballot in career WS while placing well above average in the Ink categories. The more I look at him, he was simply an unparalleled player, and we would be amiss not to recognize this level of dominance.

2. Sam Thompson
Way above average in WARP, Gray Ink, and my modified OPS+. Only WS doesn’t really like him, and even then he comes out just below average for this ballot in both career and peak. Let’s face it, guys: The man could hit.

3. Rube Waddell
As a DIPS devotee, I have a soft spot for Waddell, who from 1902-08 struck out 1/3 more batters per 9 than the league's second-place finishers in K’s per 9, including 1902 when he fanned hitters 82% more often than next-best finisher Jack Powell. Excellent Ink, lifetime ERA+*Years, and peak ERA+.

4. Pete Browning
Rated higher before I applied the AA discount, but was still the fifth-best hitter of his era (Brouthers, Connor, Anson, Kelly). He tops the ballot in OPS+*Years, while registering well-above-average scores in Peak OPS+ and both Ink categories and holding his own in peak WARP and WS and career WS. Just an extraordinary and underappreciated hitter.

5. Jimmy Sheckard
Near the top of the ballot in career WARP and WS, nice peak WARP and Black Ink.

6. Lip Pike
Estimating his pre-NA play at about 5.5 WARP per season, his peak OPS+ was exceptional, and he’s average or above everywhere else. He really did own the NA. As there aren't fielding WS for the NA I may be underestimating his Ink scores. I don’t see what makes McVey, who got in over a decade ago, so much stronger than the Lip.

7. Clark Griffith
My defense-independent WARP really likes him--he had more of a peak than I gave him credit for. The no. 4 pitcher of his era (Young, Nichols, Rusie) is good enough for me.

8. Gavvy Cravath
Oh how I love thee, Cactus Gavvy. When all those weenie deadball slap hitters were jackrabbiting around the bases, you were playing baseball as it was meant to be played, drawing walks and cranking longballs. Your superb power-hitting peak shows up in a dominant Black Ink score, and good finishes in the OPS+ categories. But even crediting you as a 13.5 WS player from 1909-1911, you just can’t get it done in the counting stats, especially WARP, which found your glovework (aside from 1915) quite unimpressive.

9. Charley Jones
Now crediting for the blacklist years, he was one of the premier hitters of his era.

10. Addie Joss
Back on my ballot! My defense-independent WARP says he was a leetle better than Cicotte.

11. Eddie Cicotte
See above.

12. Jimmy Ryan
I used to not be able to tell between Sheckard, Ryan, and GVH, but he didn't peak like Jimmy--can't compete in Ink or peak WARP.

13. Hugh Duffy
Good career WS.

14. Vic Willis
Excellent Gray Ink.

15. George Van Haltren
I thought he was indistinguishable from Ryan and Sheckard, but while he is 2nd overall in career WS, he really never had a peak worth writing home about, while the Jimmys both had their share of really strong years.
   34. andrew siegel Posted: June 29, 2004 at 02:42 PM (#704441)
I've always been a prime voter, but on this ballot the career guys have more to sell.

(1) Jimmy Sheckard (2nd)-- WARP and Win Shares both love him and they agree on little else on this ballot; the kind of multi-dimensional, BB-drawing, unorthodoxly-shaped career that is chronically underrated. Three great seasons amidst a long and very productive career.

(2)George Van Haltren (3rd)-- I've got the next six very close. VH moves up by default, but I love his consistent and multi-faceted excellence; reminds me in that regard of two HoMers who I would have loved to have on my team: Richardson and Stovey.

(3) Bobby Wallace (5th)-- Put up as many WS as VH and Ryan despite WS's underrating of defense; still don't think his peak was special, but consistent excellence is the theme of the day.


(4) Jimmy Ryan (4th)-- Finally gave up on trying to keep distance between him and Ryan; did any two contemporaries ever have such similar careers? Davis and Dahlen, maybe?


(5) Cupid Childs (6th)-- Here's my slight nagging doubt on him: sure he looks great if you use raw WARP numbers and use WS to compare him to his peers (as I have been doing), but doesn't he look pretty medicore if you do the opposite? Still, of all the peak/prime candidates, I've got to love the guy who dominated his position for a decade and hit like an OF while playing above-average 2B.

(6) Hughie Jennings (7th)-- Hard for me to rank him ahead of Childs, given that Childs also had a high peak and had twice as many productive years. Also worried about comparisons with guys I've been ignoring like Chance and McGraw. Still, hard to say it's a mistake if we elect a guy who feeled like Ozzie and hit like Nomar for 4 or 5 years.

(7) Bob Caruthers (11th)-- Looking for fresh angles to analyze this tightly packed group of candidates, I read a bunch of narratives about 19th century baseball. I can't help coming away with the conclusion that Caruthers was perceived by his peers to be as dominating as his out-of-this-world peak WARPs and WS would suggest. WARP may overrate his offense and the low IP he threw even during his peak seasons give me pause, but he had a truly great peak that yokes him to Jennings in my voting scheme.

(8) Charley Jones (8th)-- Hard to see why any prime-oriented voter would ignore him. I've got him the best of the OF who are only selling offense (i.e., Pike, Thompson, Browning, Tiernan, Cravath), but the line is long and tightly packed.

(8) Lip Pike (9th)-- Achievements pre-1871 and post-1871 make him the Monte Irvin of that transition.

(10)(N)ed Williamson (12th)-- A good not great candidate who is in mnay ways Jimmy Sheckard with a shorter career.

(11) Frank Chance (unranked)-- Frankly I just missed how good his offense was and miscalculated the length of his career by ignoring partial seasons. His package slots in somewhere between Jennings and Bresnahan/McGraw. Here begins a run of 4 HoFers (and 5 out of 6) who aren't as good as their reputations but still have strong HoM resumes.

(12)Sam Thompson (13th)-- Either you guys wore me down or I'm just feeling kindly to WARP this week, but it's hard to see how Hugh Duffy's baserunning, durability, and corner OF defense could make up for the huge offensive edge Thomspon had and they had careers of roughly equal lengths; plus Duffy's defensive edge is a matter of some dispute.

(13) Hugh Duffy (14th)--See above; where do all the WS come from?

(14) Clark Griffith (15th)-- The kind of borderline pitching candidate who is going to make spot appearances on my ballot for the next 75 years.

(15) Larry Doyle (unranked)-- Even if his fielding was mediocre, playing a mediocre 2B is still a net plus for your team. His bat and career length get him into the top 25; holding down 2B nudges him onto the ballot.

Next 10: Bresnahan, Beckley, Poles, Griffin, Dunlap, Browning, Monroe, Tiernan, Joss, McGraw.

Beckley is close based on positional representation, but I can't quite accept the argument that 1B was so defensively demanding during his career that only a handful of stoic souls could play it; without that kind of argument, all he's selling is offense and he's no Tiernan, Browning, or Cravath.

Pearce was the best player in a local game and proved enough once the game went national to show that he would have been at least a good player if baseball had drawn from a wider talent pool in the pre-1866 era. How good? Well, I'm fairly clear he wouldn't have been as good as George Wright. My best guess is that he was a Herman Long/Joe Tinker level player-- good enough for the top 30 or 40 but never on my ballot.
   35. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 29, 2004 at 03:26 PM (#704508)
Well, I'm fairly clear he wouldn't have been as good as George Wright. My best guess is that he was a Herman Long/Joe Tinker level player-- good enough for the top 30 or 40 but never on my ballot.

Even if that were the case, Pearce still has two things over them - career length and playing another, tougher position brilliantly (catcher).

Here's my slight nagging doubt on him: sure he looks great if you use raw WARP numbers and use WS to compare him to his peers (as I have been doing), but doesn't he look pretty medicore if you do the opposite?

I don't think you can find anyone else that really resembles him that is having or will have a hard time being elected, though. Gil Hodges and Dave Concepcion were probably the best at their positions, but they weren't the best in the majors that many times. They win more on career than peak for their eras. Childs wins on both for his time (McPhee was "old" when Childs became a regular and Lajoie didn't become a full-time player at second until Childs was almost on his way out).

Since you have Childs at #5, Andrew, you're obviously a FOCC and my comments were just ruminations on my part.
   36. OCF Posted: June 29, 2004 at 04:28 PM (#704577)
andrew siegel: is it your intent to put Jones 8th and Pike 9th?
   37. PhillyBooster Posted: June 29, 2004 at 04:30 PM (#704581)
(8) Lip Pike (9th)-- Achievements pre-1871 and post-1871 make him the Monte Irvin of that transition.

Based on context, I'm marking Lip Pike down for "Ninth" on Andrew's ballot with a typo, rather than tied for eighth.

I figure he'll let us know if he meant to have them tied.
   38. andrew siegel Posted: June 29, 2004 at 04:44 PM (#704596)
Haven't had a tie yet and don't intend to ever. Pike was meant for 9th. Sorry.
   39. Rick A. Posted: June 29, 2004 at 04:47 PM (#704600)
1929 Ballot

Please welcome Pete Browning and Pete Hill to my PHOM.

1.Dickey Pearce Best SS of 1850’s and 1860’s. 20+ year career, acknowledged the best by contemporaries, played on the best team (Brooklyn Atlantics) for much of that time. Elected PHOM in 1919.
2.Bobby Wallace – Not a very high prime, but a nice, long career. Seems more like Bid McPhee to me than Jake Beckley. Elected PHOM in 1926.
3.Charley Jones – 96% of value is above average. Truly great hitter who missed 2 years in his prime. Elected PHOM in 1926.
4.Lip Pike – 95% of documented career is above average. Fresh look at Charley Jones, Pike, and Browning made me change my order of them. Elected PHOM in 1918.
5.Pete Browning – 61% of value is prime, 89% of value is above average.
6.Rube Foster - Moved up due to re-evaluation and new info.
7.Ed Williamson – Realized I was undervaluing him. We’re on track to elect 8 deadball pitchers, and I’m fine with that, but shouldn’t we elect the second best thirdbaseman from th 1880’s. Great defensive player and very good hitter.
8.Bob Caruthers – OK, the arguments for Caruthers have convinced me that he deserves a place on my ballot. Good-to-great pitchers who can hit the crap out of the ball are very rare indeed.
9.Cupid Childs – Good hitter. Not as good defensively as McPhee. 84% of career above average.
10.Hughie Jennings – 77% of value is prime alone. Unfortunately, that’s all he’s got. Still that’s enough to get him this high. Re-evaluated 1890’s infielders since they seemed to get beat up during their playing days.
11.Jimmy Sheckard – Just a step behind Keeler. 84% of value is above average.
12.Bill Monroe – Seems to fit between Grant and White.
13.Hugh Duffy – 82% of career is above-average. Great defense. Took another look at him and he moved up a couple of spots
14.Sam Thompson – Great hitter. Just off the ballot
15.George Van Haltren –I tend to really like steady careers like Van Haltren, Griffin, Beckley, but just can’t see him jumping over anyone on my ballot. Moves up because I forgot about his pitching.

Explanations
Jake Beckley- I really like long careers. However his lack of prime value has him ranked lower than Van Haltren.

Off the ballot
16-20 Leach, Willis, Tiernan, Welch, Griffith
21-25 Waddell, Doyle, Griffin, McGraw, Chance
26-30 Long, Dunlap, Beckley, Mullane, Ryan
   40. Daryn Posted: June 29, 2004 at 08:20 PM (#704931)
Let’s get the Rube Foster bandwagon rolling…

Poles is 17th, right behind Van Haltren. No other newbies close to the ballot. I have Petway at about 30th, I hope that makes sense given where I have Bresnahan.

1. Andrew Foster – I am pleased to have Foster #1 and look forward to him hitting the returning top 10 to see those explanations. While his legend is a bit enhanced by his managerial and executive accomplishments, he was a truly great pitcher. Wagner said he might have been the best. McGraw and Chance said similar things. Career spanned 1897-1912. Undeniably great from 1902 to 1907 – four 50 win seasons, at least. Likely also great but without opportunity to prove it 1899 to 1901 and great but in a self-imposed reduced role from 1908 onwards.

2. Mickey Welch – 300 wins, lots of grey ink. RSI data is helping Welch, not hurting – those wins are real.

3. Jake Beckley -- ~3000 hits but no black ink at all. Baseballreality.com has him as the best first baseman in baseball for a long time.

4. Sam Thompson – 8 dominating years, great ops+, lots of black ink in multiple categories. Only poor defence keeps him this low.

5. Bob Caruthers – nice Winning percentage, great peak, short career, surprisingly low era+, 130 ops+ as a hitter.

6. Dickey Pearce – likely the best or second best player in the 1860s and played well for an old shortstop for about 5 of his 7 years post-1870. Nothing in the Constitution seems to suggest we should only consider players who had significant post-1870 careers.

7. Roger Bresnahan – Great OBP, arguably the best catcher in baseball for a six year period. Counting stats, like all catchers of this time and earlier, are really poor.

In/out line for me

8. Bobby Wallace – like Sheckard, too many Win Shares to ignore, but unless he was a great defender (and people seem to think he was, .34ws/1000 from an A) he doesn’t belong close to this high.

9. Jimmy Sheckard – I can’t ignore 339 win shares and he did walk a lot – throw in above average defense, a home run title and strong seasons 8 years apart and I guess I wouldn’t be embarrassed if he got in.

10. Tommy Leach – slightly inferior to Sheckard, better fielder, worse hitter. 300+ WS.

11. Lip Pike – 4 monster seasons, career too short.

12. Bill Munroe – I think he was pretty good. Any blackball player that is even talked about as among the best 70 years later is pretty good. I’ll take McGraw’s word for it.

13. Clark Griffith – 921 similarity score with mcginnity, who was 1st on my ballot when elected.

14. Cupid Childs – nice obp.

15. Pete Browning – Joe Jackson’s most similar player, and they are pretty close – I have him as about 4/5ths of Jackson, who was 2nd on my ballot when elected.

The rest

16. George Van Haltren – 40 wins, 2500 hits, never dominated.

17. Spotswood Poles – Van Haltren seems like a good comp.

18. Jimmy Ryan – 2500 hits, good speed, lots of runs.

19. Hugh Duffy – 10 strong seasons, good black ink.

20. Gavvy Cravath – I’m not sure how to treat his non-ML time, but I do think one of the purposes of the HoM is to take into account great achievers outside the majors. Baker Bowl issues keep him here.

21. Konetchy – 287 Win Shares, but nothing really impressive on his resume, particularly for a firstbaseman. Belongs in the Hall of the Very Good.

22. Larry Doyle – not a bad hitter for a second baseman and it wasn’t a particularly strong decade for NL second sackers.

23. Clyde Milan – nice willie wilsonesque career.

24, 25, 26, 27. Rube Waddell, Jim McCormick, Addie Joss and Ed Cicotte -- pitcher glut, throw in Willis, Bender, Mullane and Mullin for that matter.

Next in line, in no order, but I’d be very reluctant to put them on a ballot (28 to 40)-- Petway, Evers, Tiernan, Tinker, Jennings, Bender, Williamson, Meyerle, Mullane, Willis, White, Thomas, Cross, Mullin and Chance.
   41. Rick A. Posted: June 29, 2004 at 09:09 PM (#705008)
Doh!! Forgot about Spotswood Poles. He wouldn't make my ballot anyway, but I have him ranked 17th.
Petway is in the 40's.
   42. Kelly in SD Posted: June 29, 2004 at 10:41 PM (#705107)
Ballot Time:

1. Mickey Welch: The 300 wins are real. RSI supports the win total- even shows he overachieved. Statistical comparison to Keefe while they were teammates:
< pre >
player w l % era WS gs cg whip k/w
Welch 228 154 .597 2.71 261 391 384 1.22 1.32
Keefe 211 140 .601 2.62 239 368 350 1.13 2.06
< /pre >

That is not a significant enough difference to put one man in and keep one man out.
Also, against HoMers, he went 61-34. Galvin 26-11. Clarkson 12-5. Radbourn 17-10. Ward 4-7. Rusie 2-0. Nichols 0-1
   43. OCF Posted: June 29, 2004 at 11:42 PM (#705314)
Uh, Kelly... it's been nearly an hour since you posted that. We're all waiting for the other shoe (or shoes) to drop.
   44. Sean Gilman Posted: June 30, 2004 at 02:18 AM (#706011)
1929

1. Lip Pike (1)--Not quite as good in the NA as McVey, but better before; much better in the NA than Start, not as good before. Very underrated. I’ve never been able to understand the anti-1870s crowd. A pennant is a pennant. How one could rank, say, Sam Thompson ahead of Pike I have no idea. Played the infield, played the outfield. The greatest power/speed combination of his time. Great peak and a fairly long career for his time (1866-1878).

2. Jimmy Sheckard (2)--Looks pretty much identical to Keeler to me.

3. Bobby Wallace (3)--I was a big fan of McPhee and Sutton too.

4. Pete Browning (6)--AA discount and short career keeps him from being at the top of the ballot. The man could hit. We know Win Shares likes him better than Sam Thompson, but did you now the BP stats show Browning to be the better hitter? Thompson’s edge in WARP is only in fielding and pitching (remember Browning’s -37 PRAR?) and Davenport’s AA discount. Considering the problems Davenport’s had with 19th century OF fielding and the admitted anomoly with Browning’s pitching and the unknown natue of his AA discount, I don’t know how one could rate Thompson ahead based on WARP.

5. Charley Jones (7)--Jones, Jackson and Browning look pretty interchangeable to me. Makes my Personal HOM along with 3-Finger Brown this year.

6. Dickey Pearce (8)--The best shortstop of his time. Maybe should rank ahead of the above outfielders. . .

7. Bob Caruthers (9)--His WARP1 and 3 Pennants Added are essentially the same as Pete Browning’s, which is interesting. . .

8. Hughie Jennings (10)--Like Sam Thompson, only a slightly better peak and he was a shortstop instead of a right-fielder. That’s how close numbers 8 and 17 are on my ballot.

9. Roger Bresnahan (11)--Great rate stats, but he just didn’t play enough to generate the value of the higher ups on the ballot. Ranks ahead of Childs and Grant only because of the bonus I give him for being a catcher.

10. Cupid Childs (12)--Nice to see Cupid getting some love. . .

11. Hugh Duffy (13)--Everytime I look at him vs. Ryan and Van Haltren, they all look the same. Duffy’s got small (very small) edges on them in pennants added and win shares peak numbers.

12. George Van Haltren (14)--Just when I thought I was rid of the dreaded Outfielder Glut. . ..

13. Sam Thompson (15)--He’s no Browning.

14. Larry Doyle (16)--He’s no Cupid, but he’s not bad.

15. Jimmy Ryan (17)--Never thought he’d make it back onto the ballot.

16. Ed Williamson (18)
17. Gavy Cravath (19)
18. Rube Waddell (20)
19. Rube Foster (21)
20. Jake Beckley (22)
21. Spotswood Poles (-)--Looks a lot like Mike Griffin to me, giving him the benefit of the doubt, and a higher peak.
21. Herman Long (23)
22. Jim McCormick (24)
23. Mike Tiernan (25)
24. John McGraw (26)
25. Bill Monroe (27)
   45. Jeff M Posted: June 30, 2004 at 02:23 AM (#706025)
Maybe this is the other shoe. Here are the three primary pitcher metrics for Keefe and Welch:

ERA+:

Keefe 125 over 5,047 IP
Welch 113 over 4,802 IP

WS:

Keefe 413 Career
Welch 354 Career

Keefe 159 3-year peak
Welch 145 3-year peak

Keefe 236 5-year consec peak
Welch 191 5-year consec peak

Keefe 298 7-year peak
Welch 268 7-year peak

WARP1:

Keefe 95.2 Career
Welch 60.5 Career

Keefe 41.3 3-year peak
Welch 28.1 3-year peak

Keefe 56.1 5-year consec peak
Welch 40.2 5-year consec peak

Keefe 73.8 7-year peak
Welch 55.4 7-year peak
   46. Kelly in SD Posted: June 30, 2004 at 06:48 AM (#706220)
Sorry about my ballot. I was starting to type it when I got a phone call telling me that I got into the LLM in Taxation at Golden Gate University. I had to call some family members and then celebrate and then watch Spider-Man before I see Webhead 2.
   47. Jeff M Posted: June 30, 2004 at 06:59 AM (#706225)
You are celebrating a future tax career? :-)

Will you be using your tax degree for good (gratuitous transfers) or evil (corporate reorgs)?
   48. Kelly in SD Posted: June 30, 2004 at 08:50 AM (#706267)
Ballot Time:

1. Mickey Welch: The 300 wins are real. RSI supports the win total- even shows he overachieved. Clarkson, Keefe, and Radbourn all had RSI's of at least 106.83, while Welch's was only 102.79. In Fibonacci Win Points, Welch is behind Keefe and Clarkson, but ahead of Radbourn and Galvin. Statistical comparison to Keefe while they were teammates:
player w   l    %  era  WS  gs  cg  whip k/w 
Welch 228 154 .597 2.71 261 391 384 1.22 1.32
Keefe 211 140 .601 2.62 239 368 350 1.13 2.06 


That is not a significant enough difference to put one man in and keep one man out.

Also, against HoMers, he went 61-34. Galvin 26-11. Clarkson 12-5. Radbourn 17-10. Ward 4-7. Rusie 2-0. Nichols 0-1
Ok, this player comment is long enough - pretty soon I'll have to move it over to the Ballot Discussion section.

2. Sam Thompson Greatest power hitter on ballot. Top 8 in RBI every year (total 10) he played half his team's games except rookie year, 7 years in top 3. Only Browning, Cravath and C.Jones have higher OPS+. 8 years top 10 in SLG. 2nd highest ISO on ballot and Cravath had a huge home park advantage. Thompson did not have a large advantage, in fact in only 4 yrs did his home park have a positive run factor (per STATS Handbook/Sourcebook). In Black Ink, only Cravath has more, and no one has more Grey Ink. If BRAR is more to your liking: Thompson has the highest per 162 among eligibles. If BRARP, then he is 3rd.

3. Jimmy Sheckard: 3rd most career WS among eligibles. 4th highest 3 cons yrs WS. 2nd highest 7 best yrs WS. 11 seasons with 20+ WS, only GVH has more. 3 seasons with 30+ WS - best. As a fielder, he rates as a WS "A" despite being a leftfielder. Also, 5 WS Gold Gloves (only Leach has more). Part of winningest team in history.
Among LF enshrined, he would be 4th in career WS, 5th in 3 cons yr, 6th in 7 best yrs, 3rd most 20+ yrs, 3rd most 30+ yrs.

4. Bob Caruthers: Great peak. 5 straight years MVP candidate - 1st or 2nd in WS 1885-1889. 5 times WS AllStar. 3yr peak of 162 WS is bested by only Radbourn. 7 best yr total 306 is bested by only Radbourn and Clarkson among eligibles/enshrinees. 5 straight years top 3 in fewest WHIP. Ranks 3rd in career win% behind a HoM and a teammate who started more than 100 fewer games. In wins per 50 starts (pre1893 pitchers), only Spalding averaged more than Caruthers' 33. It was a short career, but it the peak was incredibly high.

5. Jake Beckley: In contrast, a long career, that is either all peak that is really low or no peak at all. Still, 3 WS AllStars and 3 STATS AllStars. Also, 318 career WS is 5th among eligibles and his 280 batting WS is the best. Good ISO of .127. Great career totals among players retired by 1922: 6th most career hits behind 5 HoMers, 6th most XBH behind 5 HoMers, 11th most runs behind 8 HoMers and Ryan and GVH, 4th most RBI behind 3 HoMers, 5th most 2B behind 4 HoMers, 3rd most 3B behind 2 HoMers.

6. Cupid Childs: Dominant Second Baseman of 1890s. 7 WS AllStars, 6 STATS AllStars. 2nd highest OBP among eligibles. 6th most WS in 1890s among position players. 7 top 10 in OBP. 11 top 10 in walks.

7. Pete Browning: Dominant LF/CF in AA. 5 WS AllStars, 8 STATS AllStars. He has the most WS/162g among eligibles - 31. 162 OPS+ is highest among eligibles. A 10% discount puts him behind Delahanty and Jackson among HoM LF and still ahead of all HoM CF. A 15% discount puts him behind Stovey and Burket among LF and Hamilton in CF. So even with large discounts, he is still in the middle of elected players at his two positions.
   49. Kelly in SD Posted: June 30, 2004 at 08:51 AM (#706268)
For good: estate planning, gratuitous transfers, trust setups, etc, etc.
   50. Kelly in SD Posted: June 30, 2004 at 10:05 AM (#706276)
BALLOT part 2:

8. Dickey Pearce: Moves up from my prelim list. Reconsidered the positions he played and how well he hit. Revolutionized/Created modern concept of shortstop. Top 2 player on team 1857-64. Hiccup in 1865-6. Top 3 hitter on team 1867-70 plus defensive ability. The above average fielding stats from 1871-78 at ages 35-41 indicate he must have been tremendous at earlier ages. Ranking is lowered because of the small talent area and Civil War drawing away further posible competitors.

9. George Van Haltren: So many CF, so many different ways to line them up. Pitching ability boosts over Thomas, Ryan, Duffy. 2nd most WS among eligibles - 344. Most 20+ WS seasons among eligibles - 12. Best outfield arm of 1890s per NBJHBA.

10. Charley Jones: Another power-hitting LF. Like his 30 WS per 162g - one of the highest among eligibles. Like the 5 Stats AllStars and 4 WS AllStars despite having 2.2 yrs stolen by owners. Like the great Grey Ink - 162. Short seasons reduce ability to have great counting numbers.

11. Tommy Leach: Maybe the best fielder eligible - WS "A+" at both 3rd and OF. 328 WS is one of highest available. 189 WS over best 7 yrs is 3rd best. Combined position totals: 3 STATS AllStars, 5 WS AllStars. 7 top 10 WS in National League. Odd Batting order usage before settling on second (from SABR's Deadball Stars of the NL): 1901 on: 7, 3, 3, 1, 3, 6, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 5, 1, 1, 1.

12. Bill Monroe: Generally a middle of the order hitter per Riley. McGraw called him the best player ever per Riley. I wish I had more to go on. But McGraw's comment will lift him over Doyle for sure.

13. Lip Pike: Another CF (just throw a dart) [just kidding]. Great hitter it appears from OPS+ and the Black and Grey Ink tests. Excellent ISO of .144. I wish he ranked better on his teams pre-NA. Also, wish his outfield defensive numbers were more consistent.

14. Hugh Duffy: 5th most WS 3 cons yrs, most WS 7 best yrs. "A+" defensive CF. 5 WS AllStars. Black Ink total is 3rd behind Cravath and Thompson, Grey Ink is 3rd behind Thompson and C.Jones. I know it was a hitters' era, but compared with all eligibles all McGraw scored more per game and Thompson drove more in. Also, he had at least 7 top 10s in hits, runs, RBI, and total bases. I think he was a key reason (along with Nichols) that the Beanneaters were the best of the 1890s.

15 tie: Frank Chance and Ed Konetchy:
Chance: Best 1b of 1900s. Excellent 30 WS per 162g. 6 STATS AllStars, 6 WS AllStars, 4 WS best in majors 1B. Great speed. Excellent 135 OPS+. Per SABR's Deadball Stars book - stopped playing regularly b/c severe cumulative effects from beanings - 10 out of 11 years he was top 10 in HBP.
Konetchy: Best 1b of 1910s. 4 Stats AllStars, 7 WS AllStars, 3 WS best in majors. 5 WS Gold Gloves. Top 10 triples - 9 times, RBI: 7, XBH: 8. BA: 6 times, SLG: 5.
   51. Kelly in SD Posted: June 30, 2004 at 10:52 AM (#706277)
Not on Ballot:

16: Larry Doyle: 7 WS AllStars, 8 Stats AllStars, but never led majors at his position. Great hitting second baseman, but even his manager said Monroe was better overall. Fielding was average. Weakness of National during his career hurts. Could move up.

17. Jimmy Ryan: Not enough above average to go with the great start of the career. I don't think a HoMer should rank out of all outfielders 17/36, 21/36, 19/36, 23/36, 18t/36, 5/36, 19t/36, 20t/24, 11t/24, 22/24. His career had a great start, but he just stopped performing at a top level after the train accident in 1892 (see NBJHBA).

18. Wallace: Positives: most WS among eligibles - 345. 11 seasons with 20+ WS (only VH with 12 has more). 5th most RBI among eligibles. 5th most hits among eligibles. 4 WS gold gloves. Top 10 RBI 8 times in 12 years. 6 times top 10 doubles. Top 3 at his position in his league 13 times from 1897-1910.

Negatives: 23.5 WS/162g is roughly 20th among eligibles. Among eligible SS it is 2nd, 3.5 behind Jennings and .2 ahead of Tinker, .7 ahead of H. Long. Among elected SS, it is last [Wagner 38.1 Davis 27.3 Dahlen 26.1 Glasscock 24.4].
His 3 yr peak of 71 WS is last among eligible SS [Jennings 97, Long 83, Tinker 78].
Among all eligible position players, it is 23rd. His 7 best years of 165 is 2nd [Jennings 176, Long 163, Tinker 159]. Among all position eligibles, it is 18th. Only 3 Stats AllStars, 1 or 2 WS AllStars.
Compared to elected SS [not including Ward because I have not read his election thread to see if he was elected more as a player, a shortstop, or a pitcher] Wallace ranks last in OPS+, last in Black Ink, 4th in Grey Ink (75 to 68 of Glasscock), last in BA, OBP, SLG, runs per 162, rbi per 162, hits per 162.
Using Similarity Scores, Wallace's best match is Tommy Corcoran with 878 which is "similar or essentially similar."

19. Clark Griffith: He was probably the 4/5 best pitcher of the 1890s. He was much better than the teams on which he played.
But, his numbers simply don't measure up to the majority of post 93 HoMer pitchers: Only Walsh has fewer career WS (by 8). His 86 WS in 3cons yr would be last (by 2, then 13). His 189 WS in 7 best yrs would tie for last. His 7 yrs with 20+ would tie for last. His AllStar appearances would tie for last. His ERA+ would tie for last. His Black Ink and Grey Ink would be last. His K/W would better only Rusie's.
He doesn't have the BIG years that a Walsh, Rusie, or McGinnity have.

20. Rube Foster: This is the ranking about which I am most uncomfortable, but I just don't see many of these players being that different from one another and this is where I think he fits. Next "year" he could move up greatly.

20b: Spots Poles: Seems like he is just a hair lower than Ryan, Duffy, GVH based on the I9s numbers. Also, doesn't appear to have much power.

21. Addie Joss: Short career. Great rate stats. Great production rate. Just not enough of it as of right now. If I change how I subjectively value things, he (and other short career people like Bresnahan/McGraw/Jennings could move up).

22. Rube Waddell: I really need more wins and the w-l record doesn't do much for me either. Also, I am not blown away by the Ks, so I discount the Black Ink he has, though I do see how they could be more valuable in an error prone era. Again, all these players are close together.

23. Hughie Jennings: You know, if he gave up some of the HBPs he may have played a lot more. Great fielder, Great peak, but not enough full seasons.

24. John McGraw: Great peak, but I want more playing time. Even for his time, he and Jennings had few PA compared with most great players.

25. Gavy Cravath: Problematic for several reasons: 1. I don't know how much credit to give for his 4-7 good to excellent seasons in CA and MN "minors." 2. His home parks in MN and especially Philadelphia were parks that were great for homeruns and runs in general, so I take the parks into thought. 3. His Black Ink is concentrated in HRs (see 2).

26. Bresnahan: Short career. He was great, but I need more playing time, even at catcher.

27. Roy Thomas: WS likes his 3 cons yr, 7 best yr totals, and his defense, but some power would be welcome. Per SABR's Deadball Stars, he would bunt around 200 times a year trying for hits.

28. Ed Williamson: Good third baseman, excellent defense, but the hitting numbers aren't there for me.

29. Tommy Bond: Could definitely move higher. But his career was short (though similar to his cohorts). Great peak though. I like more career.

30. Vic Willis: Could go higher. Good WS AllStar numbers, BI and GI. But peak was not high, WS per 40s is low, record is unimpressive.

31-45: A whole bunch of middle infielders, 1800s pitchers, a couple of NA guys, a couple of Negro Leaguers, a few outfielders with a few good seasons.
   52. EricC Posted: July 01, 2004 at 12:55 AM (#707972)
1928 ballot. For a change, I'll play devil's advocate for players where I differ significantly from the consensus.

1. Rube Foster The case against: his effectiveness as a pitcher was largely gone by age 30. How can we know how good he really was? Was he even as good as Joss, who isn't likely to make the HoM? Reply: I don't really know. On a blend of anecdotes, expert opinions, records, and the "BS dump", my feeling is that he was a modern era 200-120 type pitcher, close to Rusie or Walsh level. Such pitchers will easily make my ballot. In a lean year, they can top my ballot.

2. Roger Bresnahan The case against: played few games in his career for a HoMer, weak league, just how big a bonus do catchers deserve anyway? Reply: I do worry that I am inadverently giving catchers too much of a bonus in my system, but if a catcher shows up in the baseballreality.com MLB timeline, I'd be happy to welcome him to the HoM. Schang will be on my ballot too, when he's eligible. I'm not sure yet about Schalk.

3. Bobby Wallace Maybe only a class C HoMer (Bill James' definition), but what a class C HoMer he was. Being among the best at your position for long enough makes you a great player, as in the case of

4. Jake Beckley , who ought to be in the HoM already over some of the weaker outfielders. The career leader in nearly every offensive counting stat when he retired (a situation that Palmeiro might repeat).

5. Eddie Cicotte The case against: Crook. ERA+ only 76th all-time. Gray and black ink below HoF averages. Reply: As Bill James said, ranking pitchers is hard. HOF standards and HoF monitor are favorable. Pitched in the stronger league. Had great seasons, and my system gives bonus points to great seasons.

6. George "Rube" Waddell Multiple ERA+ and strikeout titles against strong competition. 5th highest strikeouts above league of any pitcher ever, while pitching in the deadball era. A legitimately great, though hard-luck, pitcher.

7. George Van Haltren Makes a huge jump this year, as I readjust the positional career length points to vary over time. Few were having long careers at CF in GVH's time, so the glut moves up.

8. Lip Pike In documented years, almost always best at position, with lots of black ink. Evidence that he was the fastest player in the game suggests that he was a defensive asset. Faster than a horse.

9. Jimmy Ryan Spent proportionately less time at CF than Van Haltren, which is why Van H leapfrogs him.

10. Hughie Jennings Among the highest peaks of any eligible player, but was only good for 5 years.

11. Frank Chance The case against: weak league, didn't play that much. Reply: true, but when he played, he was one of the best. Also, the best 1B of the entire deadball era.

12. Dickey Pearce The case for: perhaps the dominant pre-NA player; he can't help when he was born. Reply: I agree. I'm not sure why I've fallen behind the curve on Pearce, and I need to take another look.

13. Cupid Childs Best 2B of the 1890s; career petered out a bit too fast for him to be an surefire HoMer.

14. Hugh Duffy.

15. John McGraw The case against: not enough playing time. Reply: True, and probably enough to keep him out of the HoM, but 30+ WS/162 players are rare enough to deserve a spot on my ballot if I can help it.

Jimmy Sheckard The case for: very nice WS and WARP totals, great defense, part of great Cubs teams, overlooked by history. Reply: He comes close to making my ballot, so I shouldn't be too harsh, but corner outfielders grow on trees, and a 120 OPS+, with below HoF
average career totals in both gray and black ink, in the weaker league , doesn't make him an inner-circle candidate. Even many of his supporters don't sound too enthusiastic in their comments.

Clark Griffith The case for: 1890s pitchers are underrepresented; good all-around pitcher. Reply: True, but a pitcher with his career length needs to have more great seasons to make my ballot.

Sam Thompson The case for: enormous amounts of gray and black ink, he could hit. Win Shares blows it. Reply: In OPS+, he never led the league, and was in the top 10 only 5 times! Win Shares may blow it, but I don't think that it blows it enough for Sam Thompson to deserve my ballot.

Bob Caruthers The case for: huge WARP and WS totals for his 1885-1889 years, could pitch and hit, had a impact on pennant races, AA wasn't that weak. Reply: I concede that if the AA was not as weak as I think it was, then Caruthers might have been the next-best 1880s pitcher. Still, as I've concluded after careful analysis, Caruther's hitting was not as valuable as it's made out to be. Overall, I rate Bond, McCormick, and Welch higher.
   53. jimd Posted: July 01, 2004 at 02:40 AM (#708439)
Ballot for 1929

Read previous ballots if you want more depth on my reasons for all but the latest eligibles.

The greatest players are those who combine a high peak with longevity. However, a player can demonstrate greatness for a shorter period of time and then be unable to follow through with the longevity, which is partly a function of luck (amongst other things such as genetics and discipline). OTOH, a player can demonstrate longevity but not demonstrate "greatness" (no high peak).

Both of these types of players are flawed, but I think both have a place in the HOM, because there are not enough truly great players available to fill the HOM quota. I try to balance the two types, not leaning one way or the other. Although it may seem like my ballot caters to peak players, it only looks that way because the majority of voters here tend to elect most of the good career players (high peak or no) while leaving most of the great-peak/short-career guys behind.

1) B. CARUTHERS -- The best player available, measured by peak value. (No new arguments this year.)

2) B. WALLACE -- Made my PHOM in 1921, instead of Collins, though Jim has made it since. Wallace appears to be a victim of Bid McPhee syndrome; some voters refuse to believe the D.

3) J. SHECKARD -- Surprised me. The best NL OF'er of the early oughts, by peak. He didn't last as long as Clarke, which drops him to just above the glut. In my revised PHOM, instead of Joe Kelley (who is now also in).

4) H. JENNINGS -- Using rolling 5-year peaks for WARP-3, only he and Tommy Bond, eligible for this ballot, can claim to have been the "best player in baseball" without question. All of the others have already been elected or are not yet eligible; elected to my PHOM over a decade ago.

5) D. PEARCE -- Reflecting on him and his long career at a top defensive position in the undocumented dawn of the game, I think he belongs. (Basically, the Joe Start argument, with less documented evidence.)

6) J. RYAN -- Here comes the glut. Much better peak when compared with his contemporaries, but not up to Sheckard's level either.

7) R. FOSTER -- Legendary peak for a short time in the oughts. Very good pitcher for some time afterwards. Those who vote peak should re-examine him. Still a lot of questions, but he has the potential to get a #1 vote, depending on the answers.

8) T. BOND -- Both WARP and Win Shares places him as the best player in the game during the late 1870's. Career prematurely shortened by the rule change that moved the pitching box back 5 feet in 1880. You just don't modify at will the break on that "curved-ball" you've been throwing for five years.

9) G. VAN HALTREN -- He and Wallace have the best careers left on the current ballot, now that the really good career players have been inducted. Wallace has the better peak, though that's not difficult to do. GVH is the Beckley of outfielders, though better, unless Jake deserves more defensive credit than I'm giving (via WARP).

10) S. KING -- Not likely to go anywhere soon, but this is where he rates.

11) N. WILLIAMSON -- Need some infielders on this ballot; the best not in either the HOM or PHOM.

12) S. THOMPSON -- He's back, for longer than I thought.

13) F. JONES -- Reached the top of the OF heap before he walked away. Not enough peak for the peak voters to really get excited about and not enough career for the career voters. Some of each will work on my ballot.

14) H. LONG -- Great defensive player on a great defensive team.

15) F. DUNLAP -- Great two-way player; not great enough long enough.

Just missing the cut are:
16-20)
Jim Whitney, Spotswood Poles, Cupid Childs, Gavy Cravath, Jim McCormick,
21-25)
Lip Pike, Lave Cross, Rube Waddell, Jake Beckley, Hugh Duffy,
26-30)
Roy Thomas, Charlie Buffinton, C. Griffith, Billy Nash, Tommy Leach
   54. Arrieta, Gentile Arrieta Posted: July 01, 2004 at 03:41 AM (#708522)
1929:

Some considerable reshuffling this year. Welch & Foster move way up: I’m convinced they belong and it would be a mistake if they don’t get in. Wallace, Doyle & Beckley slip a bit: I’m having some Nagging Doubts. Dickey Pearce (hello, John) appears for the first time.

1. Sam Thompson: 1 MVP, 6 STATS AS. Strong Warp3, WS not so strong. While numbers are somewhat bloated by the era, still a standout among his contemporaries. Monster hitter.

2. Mickey Welch: There are a number of borderline pitching candidates kicking around now. He’s got the career totals to put him well inside the border. Better than, about the same as, or a little worse than Keefe, good enough for the HOM.

3. Rube Foster: Unquestionably great. Did he pitch enough? I’ve decided he did.

4. Pete Browning: Another monster, even considering AA discount. 8-time STATS all-star.

5. Bob Caruthers: Terrific pitching record, good hitter. A lot of value largely packed into 8 years. Short career and playing in the “wrong” league hurts his ranking some, but as the crowd thins out, he moves up.

6. Bobby Wallace: Long steady career like Beckley, good WS. Only 1 AS but a backup 7 more times.

7. Jake Beckley: At or near the top at his position for about 10 years. Long, steady career, lots of gray ink. 3 STATS AS.

8. Roger Bresnahan: Looks like the best catcher post-Bennett and there’s nobody looming on the horizon to challenge him. Positional boost moves him up.

9. Bill Monroe: Made 4 of Holway’s first 6 all-star teams, the last in his next-to-last year at age 37.

10. Larry Doyle: No questions about his offensive credentials. There are some about his defensive ability, but if he were substandard, wouldn’t McGraw have moved him elsewhere?

11. Clark Griffith: Solid, long career, McGinnity-like stats but spread out over more years. A top pitcher in the offense-heavy 90s.

12. Lip Pike: In his first 7 NA-NL seasons, I make him a first- or second-team all-star every year.

13. Hugh Duffy: Solid WS and WS/162, excellent defense in CF. Warp3 doesn’t like him as well.

14. Dickey Pearce: Portrayed in Nineteenth Century Stars as an intelligent player who overcame his physical limitations to excel. Also portrayed as the best shortstop pre-Wright. He was the best in a very small universe, that hurts him a bit. He played forever, that helps a lot. A standout player in his time.

15. Rube Waddell: MVP/CYA in 1905, good ERA & ERA+, lots of strikeouts.

In 1928 top 10, off ballot:

Jimmy Sheckard: Win shares and Warp3 really like him. A few very strong seasons mixed with so-so ones. He’s not at or near the top in his position often enough to suit me.

George Van Haltren: Solid career, like Sheckard, but not often a standout. I don’t want to make too much of those STATS retroactive all-star teams, but George didn’t get on even one of them.
   55. Howie Menckel Posted: July 01, 2004 at 03:49 AM (#708528)
I like Keefe over Welch, too, but Keefe (and Clarkson and most HOMers) kicks the crap out of most other Ps. Welch somehow matched Keefe's results for a decade, playing for the same team.
Seems like one of those "comfortable 0 for 4s," where the hitter swears he had nothing. Well, that's a lotta years where the Giants kept winning those games...
   56. Michael Bass Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:02 AM (#708537)
I am mainly using WARP3, Win Shares, OPS+, ERA+. I am more a career voter than anything, but that's hardly an exclusive description.

1. Bobby Wallace (3,2,1,1) - I think I get my "Career Voter" Merit Badge for this vote.

2. Bob Caruthers (4,3,2,2) - Though they may take away that badge for this one. I think he crammed a ton of value into his short career.

3. George Van Haltren (6,5,3,3) - Another big career guy.

4. Jimmy Sheckard (5,4,4,4) - Really a strong career, just a hair behind VH. Most worthy HOMer of the great Cubs teams.

5. Jimmy Ryan (7,6,6,5) - Yet another OF. A touch behind VH and Sheck.

6. Sam Thompson (10,9,7,7) - Better hitter, worse defender than most of the OFs. Ends up here.

7. Andrew Foster (--,11,11,10) - Moves up a lot. Best of the pure pitchers on this ballot, had a peak that seems to me was simply obviously HOM-worthy. Won't be elected by 1932, but I think he's more likely than anyone else around at that point to get in eventually as people come around.

8. Clark Griffith (13,10,10,9) - Best of the remaining MLB pure pitchers.

9. Spotswood Poles (new) - Surprised he isn't doing better in voting so far, given the high praise he gets from so many sources. Then again, I seem to have most NLers higher than the curve, so maybe I shouldn't be too shocked. A slightly lesser Pete Hill.

10. Fielder Jones (9,8,8,8) - Not really losing enthusiasm on him, just think I needed to reevaluate where my pitchers were on the ballot. I'm no longer his best friend, though. :(

11. Cupid Childs (14,14,13, 11) - I like him, but don't think he's better than the OF glut or the pitchers.

12. Bill Monroe (--,--,14,12) - Childs is my benchmark for Monroe. I almost moved him up quite a bit, but doesn't seem to have been a truly great hitter.

13. Dickey Pearce (--,--,--,--) - Yep, he's on my ballot for the first time. Would rather have him than the guys below him, even if I'm not very confident in how good the competition was, particularly in the early 60s when he was at his best. Was a very good player a long time, Bobby Wallace with a deduction for poor competition.

14. Tommy Leach (15,15,13,13) - Quality long career with quality defense at tswo positions. Not a great hitter. Fielder Jones lite.

15. Jake Beckley (--,--,--,14) - Lotta career, but never really that great of a player.

Top 10 Returners not on my ballot

21. Lip Pike - Reconsideration of him and Pearce (and Tommy Bond) move Lip way down. Don't think he was *that* much better than Bond, who I don't like much at all. Doesn't have the career standout length of Pearce.

16-20: Waddell (--,--,--, 15), Griffin, Willis, Mullane, McCormick
21-25: Pike (12,12,12,--), Wood, Thomas, Jennings, McGraw
26-30: Bresnahan, Petway, Joss, Evers, Cicotte
   57. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:10 AM (#708544)
Dickey Pearce (hello, John) appears for the first time.

Hello, Don! :-)
   58. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:14 AM (#708552)
BTW, there's less than fifty points between first and fourth at this point. Very interesting election so far.
   59. Jeff M Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:56 AM (#708577)
1929 Ballot

1. Browning, Pete - I have discounted his 82-85 and 89 seasons but he proved in the PL that he was no fluke. I think he's a HoMer because he was easily one of the best hitters we've evaluated. He was an outfielder in the early years, so I doubt his suspect defense detracts much from his overall value. Inducted into my PHoM in 1912.

2. Bresnahan, Roger - In my system he was quite a bit better as a hitter than Charlie Bennett, though certainly not as good defensively. If you stack Bresnahan's WS and WARP1 numbers against the catchers actually elected to the HoF, he looks very solid. Inducted into my PHoM in 1926.

3. Monroe, Bill - His alleged comp is Jimmy Collins. He certainly appears every bit as good as Grant, but competition was stiffening in his era, so he deserves a bit more credit than Grant, IMO. I don’t see him getting elected now that Grant is in, but I would have preferred Monroe. Inducted into my PHoM in 1921.

4. Caruthers, Bob - WARP1 helped him leap higher on my ballot and I re-examined pitchers, which also bumped him up. Also, I stepped away from the numbers and looked at the big picture, and he was one hell of a baseball player. Inducted into my PHoM in 1928.

5. Leach, Tommy - His numbers are deflated by the era, but normalized he looks very good. I've got him with 7 gold gloves at two different tough positions. He played approximately half his games at 3b. He might look less attractive to some since Baker was elected at 3b, but my rankings don’t change based on who we’ve elected and who we haven’t. Goes into my PHoM in 1929 (with Bid McPhee).

6. Jones, Charley - I give no additional credit for blacklisted seasons. He hit about as well as McVey, with power, but with a smaller WS peak and fewer WS per 162 games. I think he has been overlooked from the beginning because of the relatively short career and lack of notoriety.

7. Griffith, Clark - An excellent win pct on some bad teams. I boost his win totals and win pct by approximately 1/2 of his Wins Above Team, which are outstanding. Has a nice career Linear Weights total also. Rosenheck’s posts on dERA are also in Griffith’s favor. My in/out line would be right after Griffith.

8. Duffy, Hugh - He has some good counting stats, good grey ink and scores well on WS and WARP1 measures. In my system he bests Thompson based primarily on pennants added (using WS).

9. Waddell, Rube - Comparable to Griffith, but win totals are far less impressive. Can't see putting him ahead of Griffith, unless you overvalue strikeouts.

10. Thompson, Sam - Another pure hitter with questionable outfield defense. I don't think he was anywhere near as good a hitter as Browning. He didn't have an incredible peak or career, from a WS perspective, as outfielders go.

11. Doyle, Larry - Consistently in the grey ink and his WS numbers hold up very well against HOF second basemen. Eight STATS All-Star teams. WARP doesn't like him nearly as much, probably because WARP seems to put too much weight on fielding (as if it is half the game), and he wasn't so hot in that department.

12. Sheckard, Jimmy - Bounces on and off my ballot, depending on how many we elect and how many newcomers are HoM worthy. I think he was an excellent player, but he just doesn't excite me as a HoMer.

13. Foster, Rube – Difficult to determine how much of his reputation was as a player and how much was as a manager/executive/owner. I like this from Riley’s book: “…and the big righthander’s presence on a team usually was the determining factor in a championship.” A #1 starter on championship teams ought to get some consideration, particularly if he was a difference maker. But I don’t see the kind of pitching accolades I would expect for a clear HoMer. There’s a lot more written about his managing style, etc. than quotes like “the best pitcher in the Negro Leagues.”

14. Pearce, Dickey – The HoM is a little full of shortstops right now, but he’s the best SS candidate available.

15. Beckley, Jake - My ranking of Beckley has not changed since he became eligible. Very solid and long career, but like Sheckard, I don’t quite see him as a HoMer, though I do see a significant gap between Beckley and Konetchy.

FYI: Poles tied for #16 with Hughie Jennings (odd tie).

Required Disclosures:

Wallace, Bobby -- WS numbers not that impressive in relation to existing HoF shortstops (bottom of the stack in several categories) and was only the best shortstop in the league once. Tied for #22 in my system, with Chance. He’ll be the first player to be elected that I’ve never had on the ballot.

Pike, Lip – Gut tells me he doesn’t belong. Rarely the best player in the league, the best at his position or the best on his team. That’s significant b/c the players he trailed are mostly not HoMers. Had some great years at the end, but only really played until he was 33, and defense appears to have been very poor. He’s #26 in my system, behind Dunlap and ahead of Beaumont. Being the fastest guy in the league doesn’t mean anything to me, except he was a good athlete. Tom Goodwin was possibly the fastest guy in MLB.

Van Haltren, George – He is ranked #47 in my system. IMO, there is absolutely nothing special about his career that warrants his election, ‘cept he played a long time. By WS, only the best player on his team twice, and often not even the best OF on his team. Never the best player in the league and never a genuine All-Star. Virtually no black ink; poor grey ink. I would elect the following outfielders first: Browning, Leach, C. Jones, Duffy, Thompson, Sheckard, Poles, Pike, Beaumont, F. Jones, Kauff, York, Ryan and O’Neill. But I’d vote for Van Haltren before Tiernan…barely.
   60. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 02:14 PM (#708681)
Being the fastest guy in the league doesn’t mean anything to me, except he was a good athlete.

Same here. As with my saying such-and-such player was the best for a particular decade, it has zero impact on my rankings. It's just something interesting to add.
   61. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 02:21 PM (#708688)
Rarely the best player in the league, the best at his position or the best on his team.

As you know, I have him as the best at his position five times, so your second point is arguable.
   62. DanG Posted: July 01, 2004 at 02:51 PM (#708718)
With next Monday a holiday for many, we might want to consider extending the deadline another day. Just a thought.

New exhibits for Sheckard, Leach and Thompson. Spot Poles and Bruce Petway add to the “Negro Leaguer glut” in 1929. The next year, Pratt and Gardner are the top newbies as we start scraping bottom in the candidate dead zone 1930-32. We have our last “elect 1” year in 1931, as the corner OF glut swells with Hooper, Veach and Burns.

1)Wallace (2,2,1) - Like McPhee, he was a regular for 18 years. Wallace consistently leads Bid in OPS+ by 7-8 points during their prime years. As fielders it’s a wash, comparing an A+ 19th century 2B to an A- deadball SS. A leading run producer in his prime, the list below shows him surrounded by HoMers, plus he had more defensive value than most of those players. Players leading in RBI plus Runs Scored 1897-1908:
1—2250 H. Wagner
2—2110 N. Lajoie
3—1813 J. Collins
4—1772 F. Clarke

5—1769 B. Wallace
6—1682 F. Jones
7—1666 W. Keeler
8—1648 E. Flick
9—1610 B. Dahlen

10-1592 F. Tenney
11-1569 G. Davis
12-1542 J. Kelley


2)Pearce (3,3,2)– If the HoM is about respect for all eras, then Pearce is a “n-b”. Our Hall has only two players who played much before 1868 (Start and Wright). Unlike the Negro League Grants, we know that Pearce was a star of the first rank while playing at the highest level. The more I learn about him the more he seems like the Ozzie Smith of his time, a historically great defender, productive offensively, smart. Also similar to Bobby Wallace. If HoM voting had begun ten years earlier, electing one player per year, both he and Pike would already be in: 1888-Barnes, 1889-Wright, 1890-Spalding, 1891-McVey, 1892-Start (1st-ballot), 1893-Pike, 1894-Sutton (1st-ballot), 1895-Pearce, 1896-White (1st-ballot), 1897-Hines (1st-ballot), 1898-Gore (1st-ballot), 1899-O’Rourke (1st-ballot), 1900-Clarkson (1st-ballot).

3) Pike (4,4,3)– If the HoM is about respect for all eras, then Pike is a “n-b”. Our Hall has only two 1870’s outfielders (Or none; Hines and O’Rourke had careers that actually centered in the 80’s). Charley Jones and Tom York are in a bit lower class, as well as a bit later era, having no pre-NA play. Extremely fast and perhaps the game’s top power-hitter for a decade. He had a higher OPS+ than McVey, 155 to 152. Also had a longer career at the highest level (1866-78) than McVey (1869-79). I don’t see any big difference that makes one a HoMer and the other bottom/off-ballot.

The rest of these guys wouldn’t be bad HoMers, but I can’t justify ranking any of them among the top three, above my personal “Clearly deserving” line.

4) Sheckard (6,6,6) – The recently released Deadball Stars of the National League by SABR isn’t terribly supportive of him…lotsa nice words about Cravath, though. Disregarding that for now. Discussion moves him to the top of the glut. Players with 2000 Times On Base 1901-1912:
1—2903 H. Wagner
2—2673 S. Crawford

3—2645 J. Sheckard
4—2457 N. Lajoie
5—2177 T. Leach
6—2168 F. Clarke
7—2098 B. Wallace
8—2090 T. Hartsel
9—2042 R. Thomas
10-2029 F. Tenney

5) Van Haltren (7,7,8)—As to why he rates above Ryan: he excelled in the contraction years 1892-1900, a period lagging in HoM representation; he has higher SB totals (35-40 vs. 25-30 per year in their primes), which I believe was more significant pre-1920; he was a mainly a centerfielder (~71.7% of his non-pitching games vs. ~47.6% for Ryan), Ryan actually played more corner outfield. Players with 2500 times on base 1889-1901:
1—3392 B. Hamilton
2—3134 G. Van Haltren
3—3046 J. Burkett
4—3043 E. Delahanty

5—2840 H. Duffy
6—2837 D. Hoy
7—2774 C. Childs
8—2688 J. Beckley
9—2581 H. Long
10—2504 J. Ryan

6) Leach (8,8,9) – With 3B and CF lagging in HoM members, you’d think he’d get more attention. If you’re a FOBW, I don’t think you can ignore this guy. Question of league quality knocks him back a couple pegs, otherwise really close to Wallace. Had a better peak than Bobby, but his career was a couple years shorter and he had just a little less defensive value. Among OFers with 750 games 1905-14, he is 2nd in PO/G (behind Speaker) and 2nd in FA (behind Clarke). Outfielders with 2.0 PO/G 1905-14:
1—2.42 T. Speaker
2—2.40 T. Leach
3—2.39 D. Paskert
4—2.21 R. Oakes
5—2.18 F. Clarke
6—2.17 B. Bescher
7—2.02 S. Magee
8—2.02 C. Milan

7) J. Ryan (9,9,10)—Why didn’t he play in 1901? Most outfielder Assists, 1876-1917
1—375 J. Ryan
2—348 G. VanHaltren
3—348 Tom Brown
4—307 J. Sheckard
5—289 O. Shaffer
6—285 K. Kelly
7—283 S. Thompson
8—273 D. Hoy
9—270 J. Burkett
10- 268 T. McCarthy
10- 268 S. Crawford

8) Griffith (10,10,11) – The #4 pitcher of his era, behind three first-balloters, but far ahead of #5. Gets extra credit for excelling in the contraction years 1892-1900, an era lagging in number of HoMers. Could hit a little, too. Pitchers with highest OPS as hitters 1894-1903, minimum 500 PA:
1—.796 J. Stivetts
2—.696 A. Orth
3—.689 W. Mercer
4—.684 J. Meekin
5—.676 J. Tannehill
6—.673 N. Callahan
7—.650 C. Griffith
8—.646 F. Dwyer
9—.643 F. Killen
   63. DanG Posted: July 01, 2004 at 02:52 PM (#708720)
9) Bresnahan (11,13,14) – Catcher is the most poorly represented position in the HOM, a condition that may prove to be chronic. Could move higher, but I really like guys who play. Played half his teams’ games in only 11 seasons, averaging 71% of team games in those years. Still, his offensive production towers over other catchers of his era, so he deserves a vote. Lacking Bennett’s durability and longevity. Defense only C+. Players with OBP over .380, 1903-14 (minimum 3100 PA):
1—.424 T. Cobb
2—.420 E. Collins
3—.413 T. Speaker
4—.401 R. Bresnahan
5—.400 H. Wagner
6—.399 F. Chance
7—.396 R. Thomas
8—.386 N. Lajoie
9—.382 M. Huggins

10) Thompson (12,12,13)– Sure, a lot was context, but it wasn’t Coors Field. On the list of Slugging Percentage leaders (below) he’s in really good company: 13 HoMers plus Cobb and Speaker. Brouthers and Jackson (and Delahanty fractionally) are the only ones among the 52 HoMers with a better SLG than Sam. He averaged 28 OF assists (among the best) and 25 steals (a bit below an average OF) over eight prime years, so he also contributed in ways other than batting. Players with .445+ Slugging Percentage, 1876-1923 (5400+ PA):
1--.519 Dan Brouthers
2--.518 Joe Jackson

3--.517 Ty Cobb
4--.505 Ed Delahanty
5--.505 Sam Thompson
5--.503 Tris Speaker
7--.486 Roger Connor
8--.466 Nap Lajoie
9--.466 Honus Wagner

10--.463 M. Tiernan
11-.461 Harry Stovey
12-.456 Buck Ewing
13-.452 Sam Crawford
14-.451 Joe Kelley

15-.449 Hugh Duffy
16-.447 Jesse Burkett
17-.446 Cap Anson
18-.445 Elmer Flick


11)Beckley (14,14,--) – He’s Joe Start, but without a peak and retired four years sooner. Grade B fielder, won four WS GG. The many triples are a product of a strange park in Pittsburgh; his other stats do not suggest good foot speed. Hit only 34 of 86 career homes at home. Firstbasemen with 950+ RBI through 1926:

1--2076 Anson
2--1575 Beckley
3--1322 Connor
4--1296 Brouthers

5--1060 McInnis
6--992 Konetchy
7--968 J. Doyle
8--952 H. Davis

Beckley's total is still the 8th best all-time among firstbasemen. Besides Anson (#1 all-time) there's Gehrig, Foxx, Murray, Palmeiro, Perez and Killebrew ahead of Beckley. McCovey and McGriff round out the top ten. Bagwell and Thomas figure to join this group next season.

12)Duffy (13,11,12)– A WHOLE lot was context. Not a long career (12.4 yrs) for a corner OF, I’m coming around to the consensus view of him. Hit 82 of his 106 career HRs at home. Players with 1900 or more RBI plus Runs Scored, 1889-99:
1—2585 H. Duffy
2—2348 E. Delahanty
3—2141 G. Van Haltren
4—2135 B. Hamilton
5—2117 J. Beckley
6—2099 H. Long
7—2038 E. McKean
8—1939 G. Davis
9—1901 J. Ryan

13)Williamson (15,15,15) – Too similar to HoMer Collins to be too far off the radar. I think anyone who gives a bump for underrepresented positions needs to give (N)Ed a serious look. Players with 300+ walks 1879-88:

1—442 N. Williamson
2—415 G. Gore
3—344 R. Connor

4—339 Y. Robinson
5—329 D. Brouthers
6—323 K. Kelly
7—319 H. Stovey

8—312 J. Morrill
9—305 C. Anson

14)Jennings – Makes his triumphant return after 14 years off my ballot. He excelled in the contraction years 1892-1900, a period lagging in HoM representation. I’m still struggling with how to balance an awesome peak with an abbreviated career. I tried to find a retired player from the past 50 years with a similar career path, but there doesn’t seem to be one. I looked for players with 110 AWS in their top three years and less than 350 AWS for their career. Jennings top ten seasons in AWS, as I have it: 45-36-36/-35-30-/15-13/-12-11-10=242. Career total 254 AWS. For peak, I use a top-weighted seven-year average, which works out to 34.2 for Hughie.
Dick Allen was about the best comp I found. Ten best AWS: 42-41-35/-33-32/-29-29/-24-22-19=306. Career total 344 AWS. Peak 36.3. Ryne Sandberg is another: 38-37-34/-33-28/-28-22/-20-20-19=279. Career 346. Peak 33.5.
Those two are clearly HoMers. Just as clearly they are not good comps for Jennings, as they maintained a star-level of play (+18 WS) for many more years.
Is there any good evidence that Jennings’ defense wasn’t as brilliant as WS makes it out to be?

15)Bob Caruthers – Blare the trumpets—he finally hits my ballot! I’m not a born-again FOBC, but there are many here whose opinions I respect who see him as worthy. Anyway, who else is there?—Hey, wait. How about we go to a 10-man ballot for the elections 1930-32? <crickets sound> Just kidding! <whizzing projectiles sound> Not one of the big winners of his era. Pitchers with 200 wins, 1883-93:
1—319 J. Clarkson
2—300 T. Keefe
3—251 H. Radbourn
4—247 P. Galvin

5—246 T. Mullane
6—240 M. Welch
7—231 C. Buffinton
8—218 B. Caruthers
9—200 G. Weyhing

Rube Waddell – Still under consideration. Had only two seasons as regular with a Win % of at least .600. His career seems to contain contradictions, mainly a won-loss record out of sync with his ERA. Perhaps he was a notorious hot/cold pitcher, getting raked over the coals after a couple shutouts. Can anyone do a study on this--is his standard deviation for RA higher than others? Most wins 1901-09:
1—236-109 C. Mathewson
2—211-127 C. Young
3—190-118 J. McGinnity
4—186-121 E. Plank

5—178-155 V. Willis
6—177-110 J. Chesbro
7—175-126 R. Waddell
8—156-134 G. Mullin
9—155-92 A. Joss
   64. mbd1mbd1 Posted: July 01, 2004 at 03:00 PM (#708729)
1929 ballot: Poles is the only new eligible to make my ballot. No changes otherwise, as everyone moves on up.

1. Bobby Wallace (1) - Slow and steady wins the race...is this year his final lap?
2. George Van Haltren (2) - I just can't get excited for him.
3. Jimmy Sheckard (3) - Half a step behind GVH.
4. Jimmy Ryan (4) - Half a step behind Sheckard.
5. Bob Caruthers (5) - I've been hot and cold on Bob, but I think I'm happy with this placement.
6. Jake Beckley (7) - He deserves it, but I don't think he's going to make it.
7. Hugh Duffy (8) - Career comps on my ballot are Ryan (851) , GVH (849), and Thompson (832), and he lands in the middle of them.
8. Sam Thompson (9) - He'd be on top of my ballot with a couple more seasons.
9. Vic Willis (10) - Lots of innings, nice Gray Ink, dependable as hell.
10. Tommy Leach (12) - Bobby Wallace Lite, maybe?
11. Rube Foster (13) - slides on up....I'd love to see a career breakdown like Chris Cobb did for Petway, Poles, etc.
12. Spotswood Poles (NA) - He's no Pete Hill, and I had Pete at 8 on my ballot.
13. Mickey Welch (14) - Win Share glory, even if WS overrates the early pitchers he still has a ton.
14. Eddie Cicotte (15) - Wins the most uneven career award, for 1913-1920.
15. Clark Griffith (NA) - Finally makes it on to the tail end of my ballot after hanging out in purgatory for a few years. Threw a ton of innings with a nice ERA+. Most comparable is McGinnity, who we just elected.

Next five: Waddell, Doyle, Childs, Konetchy, Milan

Pearce and Pike were expounded upon in my 1926 ballot.
   65. Jeff M Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:11 PM (#708882)
Same here. As with my saying such-and-such player was the best for a particular decade, it has zero impact on my rankings. It's just something interesting to add.

I wasn't referring to your ballot -- I hadn't even noticed you said that. I just remember that coming up a lot in the initial discussions of Pike when we did the first ballot.

As you know, I have him as the best at his position five times, so your second point is arguable.

Yes...I should have said "based on Win Shares"...
   66. Jeff M Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:15 PM (#708892)
Leach...Question of league quality knocks him back a couple pegs...

What do you mean?
   67. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 04:50 PM (#709000)
Yes...I should have said "based on Win Shares"...

That's what I also use, except for the NA.

I wasn't referring to your ballot -- I hadn't even noticed you said that. I just remember that coming up a lot in the initial discussions of Pike when we did the first ballot.

No problem. I just wanted to clarify that.
   68. DanG Posted: July 01, 2004 at 05:15 PM (#709070)
Leach...Question of league quality knocks him back a couple pegs..

Interesting...this is the 9th ballot of mine saying that.

It's based on my understanding that Davenport/WARP sees the National as inferior to the American for most of Leach's career. So using a metric such as win shares or OPS+ to compare him to Wallace or any other AL player, you have to dock Leach somewhat.

If this is improper analysis please tell me.
   69. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 05:30 PM (#709117)
It's based on my understanding that Davenport/WARP sees the National as inferior to the American for most of Leach's career. So using a metric such as win shares or OPS+ to compare him to Wallace or any other AL player, you have to dock Leach somewhat.

I agree, except that I have questions with Davenport's analysis for that era. Dick Cramer's work, though flawed for its initial purpose, didn't show the disparity between the two leagues during the Deadball Era that Clay's does (though both Davenport and Cramer agree on all other eras). It doesn't mean that Clay's work is wrong, but I don't think we can say with absolute certainty (unlike the 1880s with the AA and NL or the 1950s with the AL and NL) that the NL was significantly inferior to the AL for the first two decades of the last century.
   70. Jeff M Posted: July 01, 2004 at 05:43 PM (#709166)
Interesting...this is the 9th ballot of mine saying that...If this is improper analysis please tell me.

Didn't say it was improper. I was just asking. I have Leach about where you have him...I was simply curious about the comment because I haven't noticed it before, even if it has been posted 9 times. You have a long ballot (multiple posts) with few line breaks...easy to miss things.

I had a little extra time to read ballots today, so I happened to notice it today. That's all.
   71. DanG Posted: July 01, 2004 at 06:55 PM (#709516)
I had a little extra time to read ballots today, so I happened to notice it today.

I hear you, Jeff. I'm sure that's true for nearly all of us here. It's why I repost comments, although 9 times might be getting a bit stale. OTOH, it's likely not the oldest comment on my ballot. (OK, I checked. It's currently Ryan, 11 years.)
   72. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: July 01, 2004 at 07:47 PM (#709807)
Dear FOBC Club--if the 1929 election ended right now, Parisian Bob Caruthers would take his rightful spot in the Hall of Merit! Please continue to show your support.
   73. ronw Posted: July 01, 2004 at 07:56 PM (#709831)
Dan Rosenheck:

FYI, it is customary not to tell people about the ongoing election results (a la 2000 Florida) to allow voters who do not maintain an ongoing tally to vote without such knowledge. In short, advocacy is for the Ballot Discussion thread.

If people want to keep ongoing tallies, that is great, but there are several voters who do not, and we don't want to spoil anything for them.

I'm only posting this because I made the same mistake, and Howie pointed the custom out to me. Like you, I keep an ongoing tally.
   74. karlmagnus Posted: July 01, 2004 at 08:00 PM (#709836)
I'll believe it when I see it; for example the Commissioner, who is an EOBC, has yet to vote. I think BC has a good shot at '30; after that it may get a bit hairy.
   75. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 08:11 PM (#709885)
FYI, it is customary not to tell people about the ongoing election results (a la 2000 Florida) to allow voters who do not maintain an ongoing tally to vote without such knowledge. In short, advocacy is for the Ballot Discussion thread.

Ron is 100% correct. Please refrain from any comments concerning who is in the lead or who needs help. Besides, the difference between the top four candidates is not that great. It's anyone's election still.

I'll believe it when I see it; for example the Commissioner, who is an EOBC, has yet to vote. I think BC has a good shot at '30; after that it may get a bit hairy.

karlmagnus, unless you believe in black helicopters, Caruthers will be inducted by '32. I'm not sure of the year, but the Parisian one will be a HoMer. You can bank on it.
   76. PhillyBooster Posted: July 01, 2004 at 08:13 PM (#709894)
Actually, I have noticed for a while that there's likely at least some correlation between WHEN you vote and HOW you vote. That is, if you keep a running tally, the high peak or highly divisive candidates (Pearce, Caruthers, Pike) tend to jump out to the early lead on Monday and Tuesday, but start to fade as the later-in-the-week career voters start posting ballots.

Certainly not to say that the high-peak guys will never win, but even if they do, they're margin of victory will be much higher on Tuesday evening than it will be when balloting closes a week later.
   77. DavidFoss Posted: July 01, 2004 at 08:35 PM (#710000)
Actually, I have noticed for a while that there's likely at least some correlation between WHEN you vote and HOW you vote.

:-)

Yeah, its a small sample size. The early voters are usually the same guys and the last-minute voters are usually the same guys too.

Running tallies are fun for those who have already cast the ballot, but I like to be "blind" when I cast the ballot and if I know the standings when I vote, it may subconscoiusly affect the way I rank the players.

... which reminds me that I should post my ballot before I leave town for the long weekend. :-)
   78. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 01, 2004 at 08:47 PM (#710046)
Running tallies are fun for those who have already cast the ballot, but I like to be "blind" when I cast the ballot and if I know the standings when I vote, it may subconscoiusly affect the way I rank the players.

I do it to help Joe out, though I'd probably do it anyway. I have yet to be swayed by the standings in all of the "years" I have been doing it. Since I'm an early voter, it's a moot point for me, anyway.
   79. Jeff M Posted: July 01, 2004 at 10:08 PM (#710262)
I prefer not to know. I don't keep my own tally, because I can't even remember how many points each slot gets. We decided that back in the Constitution days, and I've forgotten (I could probably look it up somewhere on the site...but too much trouble). :)
   80. Kelly in SD Posted: July 01, 2004 at 10:17 PM (#710290)
Hands over ears, eyes scrunched tight --- LALALALALALALALALA
   81. OCF Posted: July 02, 2004 at 01:01 AM (#710774)
With 29 votes in, my running tally shows consensus scores ranging from +10 to -16, with an average of 0.4 and a best possible of 18. These are likely to be the lowest such scores since I started keeping track. I'm certain to get my lowest personal score yet - at the moment I'm 3rd from the bottom.

There's a many-way contest for "most disagreed over" player. It's worth pointing out the reverse - the handful of players for whom the disagreement is relatively small for the ballot position: Van Haltren, Griffith, Duffy.
   82. dan b Posted: July 02, 2004 at 01:10 AM (#710810)
My top 2 from’28 were elected, work in Poles, and move everybody up.

Win shares are my metric of choice. I start with a composite ranking = 4 x Career + (3 best years)/3 + (5 best consecutive years)/5 + (8 best years)/8 + WS per 162. I then make adjustments justified by individual components with a touch of subjectivity thrown in. I use the same system for hitters and for 60’ 6” era pitchers. I also look at WS w/o defense for a hitting only ranking. (Number in parenthesis shows composite rank.)

1. Bresnahan (21) Big position bonus to fill the void behind the plate. I expect we will elect Santop when eligible, but our HoM will be flawed if we do not induct at least one Major League catcher who played between Buck Ewing’s retirement in 1897 and Gabby Hartnett’s debut in 1922. IMO, a 25-year span without representation at the toughest defensive position would be a blow to the credibility of our project. I am aware of the arguments against him – only caught 68% of his games, 2 of his best years were as a CF, short career. But the other contenders to fill the void – most notably Schang (only topped 20 WS twice and never topped 21), and Schalk (couldn’t hit), are even weaker choices and played most of their careers after the advent of the lively ball. SABR dead ball era committee has him #1, so does NHBA.
2.Jennings (5) – elected to my HoM in 1908. 5-year peak 5th best of all eligible players to date behind Wagner, Baker, Delahanty and Lajoie. Played on 3 championship teams during his 5-year run as a superstar.
3.Poles In 1925, approximately 1/3 of the voters put Grant Johnson in one of the “elect him” spots on their ballot. Same for Frank Grant in 1926. Even though this year’s ballot is thinner than ’25 or ’26, through early returns, Poles is only appearing on about 1/3 of the ballots, most of them near the bottom. Yet an impressive list of experts prefers Poles to either Johnson or Grant:
·The “Cool Papas” survey chooses Poles for the HOF, does not choose either Johnson or Grant.
·Bill James’ rankings and comments clearly favor Poles over both.
·Looking at the specific ballots submitted in the “Cool Papas” project by 2 respected experts:
- James Riley – yes to Poles and Johnson, no to Grant.
- Ted Knorr – yes to Poles and Grant, no to Johnson.
Since expert opinion is about all we have to go on with the early Negro Leaguers, where did all that support for Johnson and Grant come from (or go)? If it is from i9’s projections, who is Dan Levine and why should we give his input more weight than the afore mentioned experts?
4.Duffy (1). 2nd in 5-year peak, 1st in 8-year, elected to my HoM in 1912.
5.Sheckard (2) 1st in career, 2nd in 3-year peak, 2nd in 8-yr peak, 2nd best hitter on ballot. Personal HoM in 1921.
6.Griffith (3) 4th best pitcher of 90’s belongs in, elected to my HoM in 1913.
7.Chance (11) – ranks 1st on hitting alone. 5 times one of the top 12 players in the NL, 4 times one of the top 5 hitters. Best 1B of the era. NHBA rank of 25 puts him in the BJHoM. My HoM in 1921. The Peerless Leader merits more attention here.
8.Waddell (4) I like his peak and K’s. 2nd to Joss in WS/IP. 2nd best LHP to date. Hall worthy.
9.Leach (4) 3rd in 8-yr peak, 3rd in career.
10.Browning (15) – Reclaims lead in WS/162 with Jackson’s induction, elected to my HoM in 1906.
11.Caruthers –Use NHBA rankings to build BJHoM and Parisian Bob was inducted in 1898. Makes mine this year.
12.Doyle (9) NHBA rank of 20 put him in BJHoM in 1926.
13.Wallace (16) – 6th in career.
14.Joss (11) 1st in WS/IP. Great pitcher belongs on more ballots.
15.Ryan (3) – 4th in career.
16.Tiernan (10) 4th best on hitting alone.
17.Thompson (14) 10th in 8-year peak
18.Willis (4) – 1st in career, 2nd in 3-year peak.
19.Childs (17) – “Best 2B of 90’s” – J. Murphy
20.Williamson (32) Named greatest player of all time in 1894 poll.
   83. Chris Cobb Posted: July 02, 2004 at 03:02 AM (#711469)
1929 Ballot.

For more details, see preliminary ballot and other posts.

1. Jimmy Sheckard. (3) Sheckard has the best combination of career, peak value, and peak ability on the ballot. WARP and WS both support a high ranking for him.
2. Dickey Pearce. (4) Clearly one of the top players of the 1860s. With appropriate competition discounts applied, he looks to me to have similar value, overall, to Bobby Wallace. Given that he had a much greater impact in his time than Wallace did in his, Pearce ranks ahead.
3. Bobby Wallace. (5) The best career value on the ballot compensates for his relatively weak peak. As with Sheckard, both WARP and WS support a high ranking of Wallace, so I have pretty high confidence in this placement.
4. Clark Griffith. (6) Career value about equal to the just elected McGinnity. Peak was quite a bit lower, but it was harder for a pitcher to have a great peak in the 1890s. He was the fourth-best pitcher in that decade. He deserves induction.
5. Mickey Welch. (7) Better than Keefe and Clarkson, contemporaries of his already deservedly elected.
6. Hughie Jennings (9) Best peak on the ballot among position players, and one of the best we’ve seen so far. Among position players eligible through 1929, only Barnes, G. Wright, Wagner, and Lajoie have higher peak rates than Jennings. During his 1894-1898 peak, he was the best player in baseball, and better than a pair of contemporary first-ballot HoMers, Billy Hamilton and Ed Delahanty, who were also at their peaks during these years.
7. Lip Pike. (8) Career wasn’t long, but he was a regular longer than Hugh Duffy, Pete Browning, or Sam Thompson. The last serious 1870s candidate, he is the only player to have appeared on every ballot I have submitted since I started voting in 1903.
8. Rube Foster. (10) The biggest star in black baseball in the aughts. Hurt in my rankings by the shortness of his career, but had more career than Ed Walsh, and nearly as good a peak.
9. Bob Caruthers (14) His case is very similar to Jennings’. He looks to have been one of the top 3 players in baseball over a five year stretch, and a good player for a couple years after that. The last 1880s star I support for induction at present.

------------IN/OUT LINE-------------
Everyone above this line seems to me clearly worthy of induction into the HoM.. The rest of the players on my ballot fall slightly below the current standards of the HoM. They all should wait until after the next wave of all-time greats has passed, until we see if the standards of the HoM will need to lower just a touch as the game expands.

10.George Van Haltren (12) Outstanding prime. Was an above average player for an exceptionally long time, but never one of the top players in the game. WARP evaluation moves him ahead of Duffy this year.
11. Tommy Leach (13) A lot like Van Haltren in that he had a lot of above-average years, but no great peak.
12. Hugh Duffy (11) Doubting the WS view of him a little more this year.
13. Roger Bresnahan (15) Top catcher of the aughts. Genuinely great player (his peak rate trails only (Jennings, Chance, McGraw, and Pike among eligible position players, and trails only Buck Ewing among all catchers so far eligible), but not enough playing time or defensive value to be a definite HoMer.
14. Cupid Childs (18) Considerations of quality of competition that made it harder to excel in the 1890s move Childs up onto my ballot this year, as he switches places with Bill Monroe, jumping over Doyle and Poles along the way.
15. Spotswood Poles (n/e) Just makes my ballot in his first year of eligibility. Career value is equal to Hugh Duffy’s, but more spread out, so he rates a bit lower than the Duffy/Van Haltren/Leach trio. On the prelim, I had him just below Bill Monroe, but on reconsideration I rank Poles slightly higher.

The rest of the contenders

16-20. Larry Doyle, Bill Monroe, Herman Long, Charley Jones, Ned Williamson,
21-30. Fielder Jones, Jimmy Ryan, Jake Beckley, Gavvy Cravath, Tony Mullane, Lave Cross, Frank Chance, John McGraw, Jim McCormick, Rube Waddell.
31-40. Sam Thompson, Joe Tinker, Johnny Evers, Addie Joss, Bruce Petway, , Pete Browning, Roy Thomas, Billy Nash, Harry Wright, Mike Tiernan.

Comments on consensus top-ten candidates who don’t make my ballot

Jimmy Ryan. His peak is not terribly impressive and came during weaker competition years, and while his decline must be attributed in part to his 1893 injury in a train wreck, he still looks like a mediocre player for much of his career. Lots of career value, but the AL came along just at the right time to add a couple of years to his career. He’s the closest to my ballot of those top-ten players who are off, but he’s unlikely to reach my ballot before the drought ends.

Jake Beckley<b>. He has no peak, which hurts him in my system, and his best hitting years came in the two-league environments that frame what should be the heart of his career in the 1890s. So he performed significantly better when the quality of competition was diluted a bit, which disinclines me to consider him as a truly great player.

<b>Sam Thompson
I accept the win shares evaluation of him, which does not suggest that he is worthy of election. Even if one accepts the warp3 evaluation of him, which is the most favorable of the comprehensive metrics, he would look to me like a mid-ballot candidate at best. Peak isn't superior enough to offset the shortness of his career in comparison to candidates like Sheckard, Wallace, and Van Haltren. Jennings, Caruthers, and Rube Foster have peaks justify ranking them even with the long career candidates. Thompson doesn't.
   84. Adam Schafer Posted: July 02, 2004 at 07:48 AM (#712104)
Everyone moves up a spot. I still haven't found any reason to shuffle my ballot. Dickey Pearce makes my ballot this year finally, and Hugh Duffy reappears on the bottom. The addition of Duffy and Pearce to the bottom end of my ballot keeps Sheckard from reappearing as he normally would've with two additional spots.



1. Mickey Welch (2) - He wasn't quite as good as Keefe, but really wasn't much worse at all. I like to think of it as something like Glavine was to Maddux. Not quite as good, but would've been the #1 starter on most any other team. They pitched in the same park in the same era for too long for their extremely similiar stats to be coincidental. Welch pitched much too long for his career to be considered all luck.

2. Sam Thompson (4) - 10 great years. Excellant peak. I'm more of a career type of person than I am peak, but Sam has a great mix of both.

3. Bobby Wallace (5) - Career, career, Career. That's what I keep saying I like. I like Bobby's, I really do. I would really like to see SOME peak.

4. Jake Beckley (6) - Again, I'm a career lover

5. Rube Waddell (7) - The top 5 in strikeouts for 10 consecutive years. he's #10 in the all-time ERA leaders.

6. Roger Bresnahan (8) - It's no secret that I love catchers. I would've ranked Roger higher had he caught more and played the OF less during his peak years.

7. Lip Pike (9) - I can see him finally getting in one of these days.

8. Hughie Jennings (10) - Nothing new to add

9. George Van Haltren (11) - Still just a shade above Ryan

10. Jimmy Ryan (12) - See Van Haltren

11. Bobby Carruthers (13) - I'll give him a solid spot ahead of Griffith for now. I've been back and forth on whether to place him ahead or behind of Griffith, but have decided beyond a shawdow of a doubt to go with Bobby.

12. Clark Griffith (14) - I love the guy, so I hate placing him this low, but this isn't about someone being our "favorite"

13. Eddie Cicotte (15) - Underrated in my opinion. May not be HOM material, but underrated nonetheless.

14. Dickey Pearce (n/a) - I'm not an easy person to convince, but I read a couple ballots that really struck me and made me reconsider placing him on my ballot. I don't want to overreact, so I'm keeping him low right now, but as I sort through my feelings on him a little more, I can see myself moving him up 4 or 5 spots.

15. Hugh Duffy (n/a) - Back onto my ballot. No new thoughts on him.
   85. Howie Menckel Posted: July 02, 2004 at 11:51 AM (#712127)
Who gets the honor of posting Philip's ballot from the discussion thread over to here? (he did it early because he was on vake. He had Pike No. 1, so kind of important..)
   86. Howie Menckel Posted: July 02, 2004 at 12:01 PM (#712130)
1929 BALLOT

I am looking at it this way: Anyone has a chance to get in for the next few years, so I have to more firmly than ever address the "which of these guys can I handle making the HOM?" In a strong year, I've tended to slot the 5 studs at the top, then be comfortable 'rewarding nice careers' with the knowledge that they had no shot of getting in. Now I have to say, "Do I really want to move these guys up?"

Also read all the comments and looked over some numbers again; it's a major shuffle, even though many comments are the same..

1. LIP PIKE - One more 1870s star before the rest of this pack; it bugs me a little that he didn't get to play much with 'the big boys' at a time when they seemed to seek each other out, but the hitting numbers are dazzling.
2. RUBE FOSTER - He impressed too many people for me to keep him out. It's not just that he fared well in head to head games with Three-Finger Brown, it's that everyone EXPECTED him to. Did benefit from his park, though.
3. DICKEY PEARCE - Big jump this year; uniqueness and greatness is big for me this year (era just too rudimentary to grab No. 1 spot, though).
4. CUPID CHILDS - Another big jump. The best 2B, or nearly so, for most of his career is something that we just don't see on this ballot. Ignoring his monster year, still he ranks this high.
5. BOB CARUTHERS - A third climber. Has basically reached the conclusion that he wouldn't make it for me, but when Sherry Magee is getting in on the first ballot, well, these accomplishments start to jump out at you more. Tough to encapsulate what it means when a special hitter and special pitcher share the same body/same season.
6. FRANK CHANCE - Probably the kind of guy in mind of those who want 20 ballot spots. Came in at a tough ballot time, spent too little time on the field. His reputation and his team's results suggest to me that there's something we may be missing. Not so much 'leadership,' but those Cubs played the game in a way utterly foreign to us now, and I'm not sure even our advanced methods are undertanding it.
7. MICKEY WELCH - I'm still convinced we got a little off-track in the Keefe-Welch-Clarkson discussion; OK if we rate Welch third in that bunch, but not sure how he got THIS far behind. Went 61-34 vs HOMer pitching opponents. Yes, he had a very good team, but he lived up to that in the showdowns.
8. PETE BROWNING - Moves up again this year. Great hitter, and his 1890 PL season says he could have done it in any league, any time. Has been discounted too much for AA numbers, and may move up further for me.
9. BOBBY WALLACE - First of several that take a hit from this ranking approach. Still not convinced I see a HOMer here; we are going to see a ton of these middle-infield careers down the pike. Ahead of Beckley via nice P numbers.
10. JAKE BECKLEY - Deserves recognition, but doesn't have an "oomph" to bring to the HOM. Still, possibly no one will ever explain what Keeler has that Beckley doesn't.
11. JIMMY SHECKARD - Left startlingly few fingerprints in terms of baseball's collective memory, but you have to like the
all-around skills and imprint on pennant winners.
12. CLARK GRIFFITH - A personal favorite, I suppose: It's remarkable how much better he was than the teams he pitched for. I think he was a brilliant strategist long before he became a manager, and it showed in his pitching.
13. TOMMY LEACH - Might be first time I've voted for him. Hurt by being a hybrid, but he was a darn good one. Not a HOMer, though.
14. SAM THOMPSON - Still have a hunch that we'll wind up with dozens of OFs in the Thompson range; if I'm wrong he'll get in many yrs from now. Damn good hitter.
15. HUGHIE JENNINGS - This career annoys me. Enough peak for me to ask for not so much more, yet he supplies little
else and even plays those games at 1B for a further discount. Tough call.


JUST MISSED
GEORGE VAN HALTREN - Starting to inch back on the radar screen, not a HOMer but good enough to rate strong ballot consideration. Pitching edges him past Ryan and Duffy and friends.
RUBE WADDELL - Strikeouts are cool, but cooler if you know what to do with them. Refuse to believe that this scatterbrain failed to win games just by bad luck.
JOHN MCGRAW, SPOTSWOOD POLES, HUGH DUFFY, ROGER BRESHAHAN, BILL MONROE, LARRY DOYLE - All of them could climb in here someday.
   87. Brad G. Posted: July 02, 2004 at 01:44 PM (#712196)
Again, sorry for the brief explanations... one more Vac week coming up.

1929 Ballot:

1.Sam Thompson- Black Ink = 42, Gray Ink = 200! Career WARP1 = 99.1, WARP3 = 84.4. Career OPS+ = 146, Runs Created = 1157. His name came up during the Phillies broadcast Monday night when David Bell hit for the cycle… Thompson did it in 1894, one of nine Phils to accomplish this. I love Thompson- short career, but probably the most feared hitter of his day.

2.Jimmy Sheckard- Career Win Shares = 339, WS3 = 96, Career WARP1 = 130.7, Career WARP3 = 93.5, Career Runs Created = 1067, Black Ink = 19, Gray Ink = 124. Earns a Defensive “A” in WS. Long, steady career; very good all-around player. Comes out close to Thompson, but slightly inferior in Ink, Runs Created, and OPS+ (better defender, though).

3.Bobby Wallace- I think he’s the best infielder available. Career WS = 345, Career WARP1 = 155.5, Career WARP3 = 108. These are great numbers for any player, let alone a SS.

4.Bob Caruthers- 119 Wins over .500 in his career. My top eligible pitcher now that the Iron Man is gone.

5.Hugh Duffy- Career Win Shares = 295, Win Share 5-year Peak = 144 (!), Career WARP3 = 81, Career Runs Created = 1229, Black Ink = 38, Gray Ink = 147. A+ Centerfielder with 5 WS Gold Gloves, according to James, who ranks him #20 Centerfielder of all time.

6.George Van Haltren- Career WS = 344, WARP1 = 121, Career Runs Created = 1286.

7.Jake Beckley- Career WS = 318, Career WARP1 = 116. Career Runs Created = 1461, which exceeds Dan Brouthers’ 1445.

8.Jimmy Ryan- - Career WS = 316, Career WARP1 = 119, Career WARP3 = 84.5, Career Runs Created = 1338, B+ WS Defender.

9.Rube Waddell- Another pitcher who ended up very high in the Ink stats. Career Win Shares = 240; WS5 = 145.

10.Roger Bresnahan- A 15% Catcher Bonus puts him here. I have Duke Farrell (then Petway) as the next best eligible catcher, and he’s miles away.

11.Rube Foster- I get the nagging feeling his pitching ability is being way undervalued here.

12.Gavvy Cravath- His Career OPS+ of 150 and Black Ink total of 46 actually exceed Sam Thompson’s scores in those categories (though Sam has much more Gray Ink). Good peak and prime, but short career.

13.Larry Doyle- I see him as the best eligible 2B.

14.Tommy Leach- Super Career numbers; the best 3B on the ballot.

15.Pete Browning- Put up some monster offensive numbers, led by the 162 OPS+.

Spotswood Poles is probably around 17 or 18. I appreciate Jeff M.'s effort to convert Negro League info to Win Shares.

Bruce Petway is quite a bit further down the list.

Dickey Pearce ranks around #21-22 for me.

Lip Pike is around #30, with at least five CFs above him.
   88. DavidFoss Posted: July 02, 2004 at 04:44 PM (#712436)
OK... here's the ballot... getting thin here...

1. Lip Pike (5-4-2-1-2-2) -- 155 OPS+ CF in the NA/NL. Solid pre-NA play includes time at 2B. Brooklyn's best slugger in '70, second to Start in '69. Another said he's the Monte Irvin of the NABBP/NA transition, not a bad analogy.
2. Sam Thompson (8-7-5-3-3-3) -- Good peak candidate. 146 OPS+ is strong and length of prime is long enough (10+ years) to place him well above the outfield glut.
3. Richard J. "Don't Call Me Dickey" Pearce (11-11-9-8-7-6) -- True Pioneer. With Start, the star of the greatest team of the '60s -- Brooklyn Atlantics. Much of his value comes before the end of the Civil War when few played organized ball outside of NYC. The game got so much bigger starting around '66. He was not all peak, though, as he's still a decent hitter in 67,68 & 70.
4. Jimmy Sheckard (13-9-8-7-5-5) -- Fine peak seasons rank him ahead of OF glut. Good fielding outfielder for excellent defensive squad as well.
5. Rube Foster (nr-nr-10-9-8-7) -- Great early pitcher. Peak was short, but white players peaks from this era (McGinnity, Brown, Walsh) were also short.
6. John McGraw (10-10-11-10-9-8) -- 135 OPS+ is aided by the fact that its OBP heavy. A look at Baker's short career and swift election should cause some to take a second look at Johnny Mack.
7. Charley Jones (nr-nr-13-12-11-9) -- Late start (for the era) and unfairly blacklisted. Appears to be a hybrid or Pike/Stovey/Thompson, guys I've ranked fairly highly.
8. Bobby Wallace (12-13-12-13-12-10) -- Very long career. Lots of win shares, could hit a little before 1910, but mostly defensive value here. Low peak has me nervous, pitching numbers push him ahead of Jennings.
9. Hughie Jennings (14-12-14-14-13-11) -- I like peak and boy does Hughie have peak. Short career, poor seasons outside his peak slip his career OPS+ down to 117.
10. Clark Griffith (nr-15-12)-- I took a second look at him and he compares well to McGinnity. Long tail at the end of career is masking a solid prime from 94-01
11. Larry Doyle (nr-14) -- Fine second baseman for great Giants teams. Solid peak, short career keeping him this low. Fielding was mediocre, but not as horrific as WARP suggests.
12. Cupid Childs (nr-15) -- Very comparable to Doyle. OPS+ is OBP heavy. Fielding was good, but not A-level.
13. Roger Bresnahan (15-15-nr-nr) -- Great five year peak at C. 126 OPS+ is OBP-heavy. Didn't appear to play full-time outside his peak though... getting a small subjective boost due to catcher shortage.
14. Bob Caruthers (nr-14-15-15-14-13) -- His peak value is impressive, especially on a ballot this thin. Interesting candidate. Like everyone else, would have been helped by playing a bit longer.
15. Spotswood Poles (nr) -- A very memorable name. Trying to sort through the hagiographical nature of Negro League bios and find a way to figure out where to insert him into the ballot. He was fast, yes, but a shorter career with not as much power as Pete Hill. Being cautious here.

Omissions:

Beckley -- Didn't hit enough for a 1B-man. If I had to vote for one 1B, it would be close between him and Chance.

Van Haltren -- To 10ths and an AA-7th in OPS+ is not what I look for in a HOM outfield candidate. Win Shares fielding rating of B. Looks like the Hall of the Very Good to me.
   89. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 02, 2004 at 05:23 PM (#712542)
Who gets the honor of posting Philip's ballot from the discussion thread over to here?
1929 ballot:

Ahem! :-)

(I will be on vacation next week. Could any fan of Lip Pike please post this in 1929?)

1. Pike (2-1-1-1-2) – Pike should appeal to both peak and career voters. Especially his peak is one of the highest of this group. And his 13 year career should not be considered short for the early days (longer than Thompson and effectively just as long as Duffy and Stovey). Also, he shouldn’t be considered part of the outfield glut since half his value comes at second base. Pike has been sitting in my HOM since 1908 and is now the only player left who is been on all my ballots since 1898.
2. Wallace (7-5-4-2-3) – Exceptional career value. Maybe a little overrated by WARP, but not too shabby win share totals either.
3. Pearce (5-3-2-3-4) – MVP of the 1860’s.
4. Sheckard (8-6-5-4-5) – Good in all categories without excelling in one. Best of the Cubs’ position players .

Not to be overlooked:
5. Griffith (13-11-11-10-7) – I think he is underrated by this group. Maybe he is too all-round, not really excelling in either career or peak. Rating just as high in peak, prime and career in my system, mr. Consistent has never ranked higher than 10th or lower than 14th on my ballot.
6. Bresnahan (28-27-26-12-8) – Climbing fast. So difficult to rank catchers, but giving him some new credit he lands on my ballot for just the second time.
7. Jennings (14-15-13-9-9) – Collected enough career value in his short peak to finally reach my top 10 again.
8. Foster (32-25-24-21-10) – I believe I’ve been underrating him.
9. Poles (new) – I rate him just ahead of Van Haltren and Ryan.
10. Van Haltren (16-11-9-8-11) – Benefits as I lean a little more toward Win Shares rather than WARP.
11. Ryan (18-12-10-9-12) – As always, one spot behind Van Haltren. A bit higher, but shorter peak.
12. Childs – Makes my ballot at 12 for the fist time since 1912.
13. Long (13-11-18-17-17) – I think he’s underrated, although I no longer think he will make my personal HoM. Both WARP and win shares like him. Maybe his lack of a great peak hurts him but most of his value came from playing defense, which is generally more constant from year to year. I don’t believe it’s wrong to have a high percentage of shortstops in the hall, after all it’s the toughest and most important defensive position to play (just like there are more QB’s, centers and strikers considered the best players in their respective sports).
14. Monroe (24-16-15-11-13) – I’m convinced he deserves to be on the ballot.
15. C Jones (15-9-7-16-15) – May make another climb, as I’m now evaluating depth per era.

16. Leach
17. Williamson
18. Caruthers
19. Duffy
20. Welch
   90. sunnyday2 Posted: July 02, 2004 at 06:54 PM (#712739)
Somebody mentioned something above and I just want to say ditto. When I was tabulating (too busy now) it used to be just bizarre that some player would be named on 5 ballots and 4 of them would be submitted back to back to back to back. I definitely remember that Caruthers and/or Welch would always be out ahead after 4-5 ballots. Weird trends.
   91. Rob_Wood Posted: July 03, 2004 at 01:27 AM (#713867)
My 1929 ballot:

1. Sam Thompson - great hitter
2. Bobby Wallace - very good, long career
3. Larry Doyle - we've seriously undervalued LLD
4. Jake Beckley - see #2
5. Jimmy Sheckard - often, not always, great player
6. Dickey Pearce - early giant
7. Rube Waddell - erratic brilliance
8. Addie Joss - great pitcher in too brief career
9. Charley Jones - very good player
10. Roger Bresnahan - could be a one-man battery
11. Lip Pike - another early star
12. Ed Konetchy - as you can see, I'm a careerist
13. Cupid Childs - could be higher
14 Tommy Leach - a solid career
15. Clark Griffith - I'm swayed by TomH's posts

I did not vote for Bob Caruthers (though I have in the past and may well in the future) due to his short career and inferior league. I also did not vote for George Van Haltren (though I did in the past) since I think many others are better, such as Jimmy Ryan.

I am not yet voting for SPoles, though I seriously considered it. Maybe in a subsequent weak ballot year.
   92. Dolf Lucky Posted: July 03, 2004 at 01:19 PM (#714353)
1 (2)Sam Thompson--When Sam finally does get elected, there is a group of us (10? 12?) that may have to retire from this project since our 30 year quest to get this guy in will leave us without a cause. Who would have thought that a guy that was the best hitter on the ballot in 60-70% of the years he's been available would have such trouble getting in?

2 (3)Bob Caruthers--At his peak, likely the most dominant player on the board. Packed more into a given season, so it doesn't seem right to knock him for a short career.

3 (4)Donie Bush--I was going to post the same comment from last year, but one comment from the discussion thread mentioned his skill as a leadoff man, so I'll reference that, plus point out that Bill James's comments about double plays are horribly misleading. James writes that Bush played in an era of increasing double plays and that when Bush broke in, teams turned about 85 double plays, and that by 1930, teams turned about 150. Note that in 1930, Bush had been out of the game for a few years already. Anyways, in 1914 (roughly the peak of Bush's career), here are the number of double plays that each team's 1st baseman was involved in (as a proxy for total DP by each team):

Phi--81
Bos--65
Was--87
Det--83
Stl--70
Chi--59
NYY--75
Cle--88

Not only were Bush's Tigers adept at turning two, Bush himself was involved in 64 double plays. Hardly the sign of a player that was "absolutely awful at turning the double play." Whatever. This is not a bad defensive shortstop, although his defense clearly follows a typical offense career pattern, meaning that his peak was extra strong, because that's when he was very good with the glove as well.

4 (5)Bobby Wallace--Clearly the best career guy on the board, but you'd never win a pennant with this guy as your best player. Maybe even if he's your 2nd best player.

5 (6)Jimmy Sheckard--A complete player who was just one or two "wow" seasons away from being a sure thing.

6 (7)Eddie Cicotte--Of the eligible pitchers, Cicotte has the highest career WARP score by a significant margin. Peak was pretty good, to boot.

7 (8)Hughie Jennings--The peak stud. Not quite long enough of a career.

8 (10)Rube Waddell--I feel pretty confident in saying that if Iron Man was elected, Rube should get in some day as well.

9 (11)Jimmy Ryan--Sheckard lite.

10 (12)Cupid Childs--Hanging around from the days that lots of 2nd basemen got props. Not really good enough to be hall-worthy

11 (-)Herman Long--I'm not all that comfortable with having 4 shortstops on the ballot, but that's where I'm at for now. Maybe I can see if I can finagle Bresnahan on in the future instead.

12 (13)Jim McCormick--Kind of a peak pitcher, in that he threw 500-600 innings at his prime, but he also notched 265 wins.

13 (15)George VanHaltren--Ryan lite. Actually, that's not entirely true, but VanHaltren's peak was pretty weak for an outfielder.

14 (14)Silver King--I know that "everybody" did it, but I've got a thing for these pitchers who threw all the time, then exploded into oblivion. McCormick netted 265 wins in basically 9 years. King's 1888 may be the best season on the board.

15 (-)Hugh Duffy--Back after a 6 year hiatus. It's a weak board.

Required by law to comment on:

Dickey Pearce & Lip Pike--My stance on discounting short seasons as well as timelining issues make it tough for me to see these two as worthy against the other players on the ballot. Pearce especially, who played a different version of the game against much lower quality of competition.

Jake Beckley--On the one hand, he was worth 4 more wins over a replacement player over his career than Sam Thompson. On the other hand, it took him 8 more seasons to do it. Bottom line, if Beckley is your best player, not only are you not a pennant winner, you're not even a .500 team. See 1890 and 1904.
   93. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 03, 2004 at 02:55 PM (#714395)
Ballot news:

The top spot appears to be sewn up now (though it's still relatively close), but there is still competition for the second slot.
   94. MichaelD Posted: July 04, 2004 at 01:57 PM (#715785)
I'm posting pretty quickly because I'm in a hurry this holiday weekend.

Pete Hill and Jake Beckley are my PHOM inductees this year.

1. Jimmy Sheckard - In defense of his defense Win Shares for defense for years when he was not with the Cubs and with a bunch of different teams. That seems to suggest that he was a strong defender, not just lucky in my opinion.

2. Bobby Wallace - Nice career.

3. Jimmy Ryan - I'm not sure what else to say. I guess I'm not necesarrily the biggest FOJR for a while now.

4. George Van Haltren - Before I was discounting his Win Shares too much for his pitching.

5. Hugh Duffy - Every time I do a re-analysis, Duffy or Ryan turns out to be slightly in front of the other and it flip-flops each time. Now Ryan has the slight edge.

6. Tommy Leach - I guess he is my type of player, lots of career Win Shares. 3b was still a key defensive position while he was playing there, so the defensive Win Shares make sense.

7. Jake Beckley - Hard to ignore his entire career. Even though the peak is not very high, he was still often the best first baseman. Moved up slightly this year.

8. Gavvy Cravath - I'm right now giving him a middling bump up for his missed years (about half a full year) but could give him more.

9. Larry Doyle - Falls a little because of the points Joe made talking about questions about his defense with regards to WS and WARP.

Project personal 1932 cut line.

10. Sam Thompson - I re-evaluated the early players versus the later ones, by the numbers they still seem to be lacking but I gave them a little bit of a bump beyond what the numbers suggest. Thompson ends up here.

11. Clark Griffith - Also drops downward because of the pitcher re-adjustment.

12. Ed Williamson - There is now a chance Williamson could re-work into my PHOM situation again. A couple of years ago, I would have thought that highly unlikely.

13. Mike Tiernan - I always thought he was a little inferior to Thompson. The two are pretty close but that slight difference could be pretty important at this level.

14. Spotswood Poles - Not as strong as the elected NLers but given the weakness of the ballot gets a slot.

15. Roger Bresnahan - I'm not too big on positional bonuses with the exception of catcher and that is why Bresnahan get the last slot.

Next groups. Listed alphabetically. Like what I do with grades, I tried to find break for these groups.

16-22: Caruthers, Chance, Childs, Evers, Konetchy, Pearce and Welch.

23-25: Jennings, Monroe and Tinker.

26-30: Cross, Mullane, Petway, Pike and Waddell.

I'll post comments about those missing in a little while.
   95. MichaelD Posted: July 04, 2004 at 04:19 PM (#715825)
Missing ballot:

Lip Pike - I think that Pearce is superior now. Pike just doesn't seem strong enough compared to his contempories already elected. I think I have the right number, but I'm sure others would disagree.

Dickey Pearce - Other than the early Negro Leaguers, probably the hardest player to judge. Two complicating factors. I'm still trying to make sure that he is the best player from his time and whether there was enough baseball to determine whether that makes a difference.

Bob Caruthers - Still not convinced. Not sure what else to say. I don't see how his being any better than the other 1880s pitchers before an AA discount. Even if the discount isn't all that great he can't make my ballot.
   96. favre Posted: July 04, 2004 at 04:36 PM (#715834)
1. Dickey Pearce
2. Lip Pike

I’ve been one of Lip’s strongest supporters for years now, but some re-examination has convinced me to drop him behind Pearce. Pike’s NA and pre-NA numbers are similar: he was clearly a star for years, the best 2B of the 1860s and the best outfielder of the NA. However, Pearce was arguably the best player in baseball for a stretch (’59-’63, although Jim Creighton is a serious challenger). Pike cannot make that claim, and Pearce’s career was considerably longer.

3.Bobby Wallace
4.Jake Beckley
5. Clark Griffith

The players with very good careers but little or no peak. Wallace’s value as a fielder and pitcher gives him the edge over Beckley. I am struck by the fact that, in 1929, we’ve see few quality first basemen in the past thirty years (although Gehrig is setting the standard for the position as we speak). Ed Konetchy has similar value to Beckley from age 22-35; probably more value, given run production during the era and Konetchy’s defense. Yet Beckley also had a good season at age 21 and a very good season at age 36; he also had 300 PA at age 20 with 152 OPS+ and 900 PA in his late thirties where he hit for league average. Beckley’s career simply surpasses all other first basemen from the 1890s until the 1920s.

Between 1895-1901, Griffith never had a season ERA+ lower than 119 in a hitter’s era. In those seven seasons, Griffith was 154-87, .639 WP; his team’s WP was .449 without him.

6.Rube Waddell
7.Rube Foster

I have had Waddell above Foster for several years, but as the ballots get thinner, Waddell’s strikeouts and three ERA+ titles impress me more and more.

8.Jimmy Sheckard
9.Tommy Leach
10.Ned Williamson

Both Sheckard played excellent defense value at OF and 3B mixed in with good hitting in a low offense era; Sheckard had a couple of seasons of outstanding hitting. Williamson was also an excellent fielder and similar hitter to these two, but played in more offense-friendly era.

11. Sam Thompson
12. Pete Browning
13. Cupid Childs
14. Larry Doyle
15. Mike Tiernan

I see Thompson, Tiernan, and Browning having very similar value. Thompson and Tiernan have often been linked together, of course, but I think Browning was a comparable player: relatively short career, not much defense, but a very good hitter. Childs and Doyle were also similar hitters, although Doyle has more questions about his defense.

16.Hugh Jennings
17.Bob Caruthers

Great players for five years, but with little else on their resume’. I don’t think the AA reached parity with the NL during Caruthers’ peak years of 1885-1887, but he might make my ballot next year.

18. Mickey Welch
19. Bill Monroe
20. Spotswood Poles

I may be underrating both Poles and Monroe. Still, Poles career lasted unofficially from 1909-1923. and he was only the fourth best Negro League outfielder of that time, behind Hill, Torriente, and Charleston.

21.Charley Jones
22.Frank Chance
23.Vic Willis
24.Gavvy Cravath
25.Addie Joss
26. Bruce Petway
27.Roger Bresnahan

Bresnahan was probably a better hitter than Petway in his prime, but Petway’s defense was far superior, and he played the position for longer.

28.Jimmy Ryan
29.George Van Haltren

Jimmy Ryan and George Van Haltren were good hitters in a great hitting era which already has plenty of inductees to the HoM. Their position is underrepresented, but in the next seven years we’re going to see Cobb, Speaker, and Torriente (and let’s not forget about Pike).
   97. yest Posted: July 04, 2004 at 07:32 PM (#716232)
Paul Hines and Sherry Magee make my pHoM this year though I’m not to sure if Magee deserves it.
1. Sam Thompson in the top 3 in RBIs 7 times (made my personal HoM in 1902)
2. Mickey Welch finished in the top 10 in era, strikeouts and wins 9 times (made my personal HoM all the way back in 1898)
3. Hugh Duffy only him, Ed Delahanty ,Rogers Hornsby and, Ted Williams ever hit 400/500/600 in 1 season (made my personal HoM in 1908)
4. Rube Waddell most strikeouts 6 times and strikeouts per 9 innings 8 times and the 7th lowest era for his career (minimum 2000 innings pitched) (made my personal HoM in 1917)
5. Pete Browning 341 batting avg. (13th total)and a 403 on base percentage (51st overall) (made my personal HoM in 1906)
6. Jake Beckley in the top 10 in RBIs 10 times (made my personal HoM in 1915)
7. Clark Griffith 619 winning percentage with sub 500 teams (made my personal HoM in 1912)
8. Addie Joss 1st in hits and walks per 9 innings for his career (made my personal HoM in 1918)
9. Lip Pike I think the NA still has a few viable candidates (made my personal HoM in 1910)
10. George Van Haltren 100 runs 11 times (made my personal HoM in 1925)
11. Jimmy Ryan has the 30th most (1642) runs ever (made my personal HoM in 1926)
12. Rube Foster Pitched from 1902-1926 (pitched semi pro from 1897-1901)
reportedly had these records:
1902; 51-3
1903; 59-1 (I also saw 54 wins and 55 wins) rumored to have won 44 in a row
1904; 51-4
1905; 50-4
There’s a legend that in 1902 John McGraw was so impressed with his screw ball that he asked him to teach it to his pitching staff whether it’s true or not the Giants era+ went from 99 in 1902 to 113 in 1903
Honus Wagner said he was "one of the greatest pitchers of all time...smartest pitcher I've ever seen..."
According to the stats in the Macmillan encyclopedia Foster hit .345 in 69 at bats
(made my personal HoM in 1927)
13. Gavy Cravath 6 HR titles (made my personal HoM in 1928)
14. Ginger Beaumont 1 of only 12 players to have the most hits 4 times
15. Cupid Childs 24th in on base percentage
16. Charlie Buffinton 20 wins 7 times
17. Bob Caruthers highest winning percentage 4 times
18. Deacon Phillippe led in walks per 9 innings pitched 5 times finished in the top 3 in walks per 9 innings pitched 8 times
19. Vic Willis 20 wins 8 times
20. Bobby Mathews I think the NA still has a few viable candidates
21. John McGraw 4th in runs per game
22. Hugh Jennings led in hit by pitches 5 times and has the most for his career
23. Tony Mullane 30 wins 5 times 284 total
24. Jack Chesbro his 1904 season helps him big
25. Tip O’Niell 326 batting avg.
26. Levy Meyerle I think the NA still has a few viable candidates
27. Tommy Bond 5th in hits and walks per 9 innings for his career
28. Jim McCormick 33rd in era with a 243 era
29. Jack Stivetts 297 batting avg. while his opponents had a 255 batting avg.
30. Mike Tiernan 392 on base percentage
31. Jesse Tannehill 629 winning percentage
32. George Mullin had a 262 batting avg. and 319 on base percentage
33. Will White 9th lowest era ever (minimum 2000 innings pitched)
34. Sam Leever highest winning percentage 3 times
35. Mike Donlin 333 batting avg.
36. Cy Seymour 303 batting avg.
Explanations for the missing players in the top 10
Jimmy Sheckard too low a batting average for a deadball era outfielder
Bobby Wallace I’m not to sure that he’s good enough offensively or defensively
the evidence doesn’t convince me
Dickey Pierce I use 1866 as a cutoff year
   98. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: July 04, 2004 at 11:20 PM (#716736)
Dickey Pierce I use 1866 as a cutoff year

Someone else can give a better answer to this than I can, but I think, according to the constitution of the HoM, none of us can choose our own cutoff year & we're supposed to look at the player's entire record. Someone less lazy than me can actually bother to look it up & check for sure.
   99. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: July 04, 2004 at 11:45 PM (#716780)
Someone else can give a better answer to this than I can, but I think, according to the constitution of the HoM, none of us can choose our own cutoff year & we're supposed to look at the player's entire record. Someone less lazy than me can actually bother to look it up & check for sure.

We're supposed to be looking at all years before 1871. Now, that doesn't mean that you have to place Pearce on your ballot (I personally won't look at any nonprofessional players from that time because I have zero confidence as to how good they were), but we should be giving these players a fair chance to be slotted.

Since yest is respectful of the NA and some years before '71, we may be able to sway him to our side, regardless. yest, have you seen David Foss' work on Pearce's pre-NA career? It indicates he was a very good hitter (a premium at short and catcher) on some outstanding teams during the '60s. I don't think he was George Wright good, but combining his long career, outstanding defense and nice peak is extremely noteworthy to me.
   100. Esteban Rivera Posted: July 05, 2004 at 03:37 AM (#717150)
I've taken a good long look this year at who should be on my ballot for the following years. I have decided to focus on those players who were the cream during their time. Therefore, some shakeup on my ballot.

1. Sam Thompson - A heck of an offensive machine. Reputed to have the best arm of his time. Doesn't the 1890's Philadelphia outfield kind of resemble the mid 1990's Cleveland outfield?

2. Lip Pike - One of the best players in early baseball. The pre-NA numbers confirm what I have believed about his early career.

3. Pete Browning - Was a heck of a hitter and did it under tremendous duress. I buy the "greatness can't take full advantage off lower competition" idea. Proved he could hold his own in the player's league.

4. Rube Waddell - Was a special picher. I buy the run support analysis and also believe in the higher value of being a phenomenal K artist in his time and place. His career record isn't that impressive but you have to remember that there were some stretches where he was jettisoned because his managers did not know how to deal with his unique personality.

5. Mickey Welch - The correction of my overreaction continues as Welch moves up 1 spot this year.

6. Jake Beckley - The career man moves up this year as I place a bit more emphasis on career this time around.. There is a definite dearth of long career's at first.

7. Clark Griffith - The more that I look at him the more I realize I have been underestimating his accomplishments. The fourth best pitcher of the 90's should be in.

8. Rube Foster - Have looked at Foster once more and have concluded that the evidence does support him being one of the best pitchers of his time.

9. Bill Monroe - Keep gaining confidence in him. Seems to be one of the best second basemen of his time.

10. Charley Jones - Great hitter and one of the top outfielders of his time. Shorter seasons and blacklisting distort the actual statistical accomplishmebnts Jones would have had.

11. Hughie Jennings - A historical monster for five years.

12. Hugh Duffy - His credentials are that he was for a time one of the best players and he produced during the 90's. Then he just fell off. However, I feel his peak gives him the slight edge over Ryan and Van Haltren.

13. Bob Caruthers - The peak/combo man holds steady on my ballot. Definite crammed value but not enough to juice him above everyone else.

14. Roger Bresnahan - Hanging by a thread. He has his favorable points such as his offense and being versatile. However, playing time and defensive issues make me a bit wary of going higher with him.

15. Dickey Pearce - Pearce finally makes my ballot! Have gotten more confidence in the first half of Dickey's career. Career value is the most of available candidates. I don't know if he'll go higher. My level of confidence can only go so high.


Not on ballot but made Top 10 consesus:

Jimmy Scheckard - Too many outfielders of his time already in and better than he was.

George Van Haltren - Another one with consistency but not the best at postion.

Jimmy Ryan - I'll take Van Haltren's consistency over Ryan's ups and downs. Ryan is in my 21-25 range.

Bobby Wallace - Long consistent career but not the best at his postion for much of his time.
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