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Wednesday, June 23, 2004

1929 Ballot Discussion

1929 (July 4)—elect 2
WS W3 Rookie Name-Pos (Died)
232 68.0 1909 Donie Bush-SS (1972)
164 50.4 1911 Tilly Walker-LF/CF (1959)
140 49.7 1912 George Cutshaw-2b (1973)
171 40.1 1912 Eddie Foster-3b (1937)
139 37.1 1916 Jim Bagby-P (1954)
144 34.2 1911 Fred Toney-P (1953)
124 32.7 1913 Reb Russell-P/RF (1973)
134 30.1 1911 Earl Hamilton-P (1968)
Negro Lg 1906 Bruce Petway-C (1941)
Negro Lg 1909 Spotswood Poles-CF (1962)

1929 (July 4)—elect 2
HF% Career Name-pos (born) BJ – MVP - All-Star
52% 09-23 Spotswood Poles-CF (1889) #4 cf - 3 - 3*
44% 06-25 Bruce Petway-C (1883) #5 c - 1 - 7*
00% 09-23 Zack Pettus-1B/C (1884) - 0 - 2*

Note, I will be on vacation starting Saturday a.m., returning the following Saturday a.m.. I have no idea if I will be able to access the internet during that time. So I’ll probably just post the ballot thread Saturday morning before I leave, just refrain from posting to it until Monday - unless you too won’t be around . . .

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 23, 2004 at 03:54 AM | 183 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:00 AM (#693514)
moving this to the sidebar radar . . .
   2. thok Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:01 AM (#693515)
Isn't Donie Bush a new elgible?
   3. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:03 AM (#693516)
Actually, we had him as eligible last time (borderline incorrectly), and he got votes, so I figured I wouldn't list him again - should I?
   4. thok Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:04 AM (#693517)
It couldn't hurt.
   5. ronw Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:48 AM (#693555)
Wow, what a mediocre MLB class. If it weren't for the Negro Leaguers, this thread would be all about the backlog.

Joe, put Donie Bush up there so the class of '29 isn't too embarassing.
   6. Michael Bass Posted: June 23, 2004 at 05:06 AM (#693563)
This class is notable for the fact that none of the MLBers even enter my (relatively liberal) consideration set.
   7. DavidFoss Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:05 AM (#693607)
Hey... the Sox won with Tris in CF in 1915 and they won with Tilly in CF in 1916... ergo, Tilly is as good as Tris?

Eh... OK... it was worth a shot...
   8. DavidFoss Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:27 AM (#693611)
Preliminary Ballot:

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) -- I like peak. An earlier start would make a vote for him easier. Could certainly hit. Held his own teamed with Brouthers in DET and Delahanty/Hamilton in PHI.
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) -- Decided to enter him into my ballot here. Great early pitcher. More known as a pioneer, but I like those kinds of guys.
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.
12. Cupid Childs (nr-15) -- Very comparable to Doyle. OPS+ is OBP heavy
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... even accounting for lower playing time of the catcher position.
14. Bob Caruthers (nr-14-15-15-14-13) -- His peak value is becoming too hard to ignore, especially on a ballot this thin.
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.
16. Mickey Welch (nr) -- 300 game winner. Played for great teams in an easy era to win games. Meager 113 ERA+ is keeping him low on the ballot.
17. Pete Browning (nr)-- The man could hit. His 162 OPS+ is partly inflated by his great early AA numbers, but his great PL season almost makes you want to ignore the discount. His durability becomes an issue starting in '88.
18. Gavvy Cravath (ne-11-10) -- Very good five year peak.

Next group... Petway, Van Haltren, Leach, Monroe, Joss
   9. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:28 AM (#693612)
Bush added - for those that may have missed it, there was some question about his eligibility, so he's listed on the 1929 ballot also . . .
   10. DavidFoss Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:50 AM (#693616)
Forgot to make a "depth chart" that someone made last week that I liked:

Depth Chart:

C -- Bresnahan-13, Petway
1B -- Beckley, Konetchy
2B -- Doyle-11, Childs-12, Monroe
SS -- Pearce-3, Wallace-8, Jennings-9
3B -- McGraw-6, Leach
LF -- Sheckard-4, CJones-7, Poles-15
CF -- Pike-1, Browning, Van Haltren, Duffy
RF -- Thompson-2, Cravath, Ryan
P -- Foster-5, Griffith-10, Caruthers-14, Welch, Joss

... hmmm, never really liked Beckley, but the ballot is thin enough I should reconsider him.

I admit he had fallen off my radar. These lean ballots are causing a major 'rescan' of the radar as I had not anticipated dipping this deep into the backlog.
   11. Kelly in SD Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:20 AM (#693632)
Stupid Computer.

Man, these next four elections are not going to be easy. I think our selections over this period are going to have a chance that they won't have for many 'years' to come. As such, I have been going back and forth on every player. Is anybody worth a first place vote? Is anybody worth the second place vote? And, is my 15th place person really worthy of that position and the consequent points? But that is what makes this so interesting. That and the fact that every player has such negatives that you can find a reason not to have them on your ballot while another voter has them first.

I have been going over the eligibles in my head and these are the reasons I have found NOT TO VOTE or NOT VOTE HIGHLY various players. Friends of various, what counteracts the negative.

Beckley: Entire career without a peak. Did not dominate a weak first base corps between ABCs and Chance. No pennants.
Chance: Very short career. Dominated a weak first base corps.
Konetchy: Short career. Dominated a weak first base corps. One pennant.

Childs: Short career. Not "A" fielder. Best season in weakest of 3 leagues.
Doyle: Short career. Average fielder at best. Dominated weak league. Never major league best at position.
Evers: Hounded by the "Were all the Cubs just really good?" question. Did not hit well.
Monroe: Not well documented NegroLeague career.

L.Cross: POOOOR hitter (by OPS+). Only D.McGuire had fewer WS/162g for career. Most of career in explosive 90s.
Leach: Somewhat above average hitter. Value split between 2 positions. Rate stats hurt by playing in offensive trough.
D.Lyons: Short career. Not good fielder. Spent much of career in high offense time. Could not stay healthy. Spent first half of career in AA. Next big years were the first 2 at new pitching distance.
McGraw: SHORT career. Only one season over 127 games/ 7 over 90 games. average at best fielder. Fewer than 5000 PA.
Williamson: Short career. Good/Great hitting park. Short seasons hurt career totals.

Jennings: Short career. Only 7 seasons as a regular.
Long: LOUSY hitter. OPS+ of 94. RC/G < 5.
Pearce: Was that really baseball? question. Best seasons came when game was heavily NY-centric and during Civil War. No longer one of best hitters on team after 1866.
Tinker: LOUSY hitter. "Just another good/really good Cub?" question. Is his fielding THAT good?
Wallace: Very small peak. Lots of bulk. No pennants. Barely above average hitter.

LF: Don't We Already Have Enough attaches to all candidates.
C.Jones: Career totals hurt by short seasons, not starting until later in age, unfairly blacklisted for 2 1/5 seasons. Half career spent in AA. (Choose whatever AA discount you choose).
Sheckard: Was he just another really good Cub? question. Not much power. Not great career totals.

Browning: AA discount (choose your discount). Shorter seasons reduce career totals. Did not play full seasons from 88-92.
Duffy: Biggest numbers in first years of new pitching distance. Huge fluke season in 94.
Pike: Stopped playing in 77 so questions about quality of opposition in early career.
Ryan: Lots of bulk. Does a HoMer have a 9 season run where he ranks (by WS among all OF) 17/36, 21/36, 19/36, 23/36, 18/36, 5/36, 19/36, 20/24, and 11/24? Its too bad he was in the train accident (see BJNHBA) but he just couldn't hit after that.
Seymour: value split between pitching/OF. Value is dramatically increased by huge fluke year.
Thomas: NO power.
Van Haltren: value split between pitching/OF. No high peak. Much of career in high offense era.

Cravath: Odd career shape. How do you value time in LA/Minneapolis? How do you account for Extreme Home Run/Homer advantage? Short career.
Thompson: Short career. WS doesn't like.

Bresnahan: Value split between positions. Short career.
D. McGuire: Did not play a lot during each season. Low career totals.
   12. Kelly in SD Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:38 AM (#693634)

P (pre 93)
Bond: James/Neyer Guide say one of 10 luckiest pitchers by ERA vs. LERA. ERA+ only 111. Arm blown out young (Like most). Career split (sort of) by NA and NL. Short career compared to elected pitchers.
McCormick: ERA+ is 118. W/L not impressive. Not enough great years.
Mullane: missing season hurts totals. AA pitcher so is there a discount needed. W/L record is not great. K/W is weak.
Welch: totals don't quite match up to Keefe's or other HoMers of period. Why no Black Ink? ERA+ only 113.

P (post 93)
Griffith: Career WS don't match up to current enshrinees. 3yr cons. and 7 best yr WS totals don't match current enshrinees. Not a lot of Black or Grey Ink. Poor K/W rate.
Joss: Very LOW career totals - fragile (?) arm. Career, 3yr cons., and 7 best yrs WS totals don't compare to enshrinees.
Waddell: Career totals don't compare to enshrinees. value is strikeout based. Uninspiring W/L record. Allowed larger than expected unearned runs. Short career. Short peak.
Willis: W/L %age not impressive. ERA+ lower than any enshrinee. Team performance pulls down player.

Special Problem Player:
Caruthers: Did not pitch as much as contemporary HoMers did. AA discount (of whatever amount). Short peak. Value split severely between bat and mound.
   13. Kelly in SD Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:41 AM (#693635)
Now all the above players have their pluses, but it's late and I am going to bed. Hopefully, I'll post a couple of positive versions of this in the next few days.
   14. Kelly in SD Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:51 AM (#693637)
I know I forgot Mike Tiernan and Fielder Jones and Spots Poles. Maybe later.

   15. EricC Posted: June 23, 2004 at 10:51 AM (#693643)
1929 prelim. Under the previous version of my system, Cicotte would have been number 1. I realized that "modern" pitchers were getting too much credit for career length. Instead of using the same positional career length bonuses for all years, I now let them vary as the game evolved. Although this shows 1880s pitchers in a better light than before, it merely brings Radbourn and Galvin up to par with other previous inductees, rather than bringing
any new 1880s pitchers onto the ballot. The changes drop Addie Joss and Gavvy Cravath off, and give George Van Haltren a boost.

I also discovered that I had wiped out half of Rube Foster's career with a programming error. I now realize he was quite a pitcher during his peak and that he may even rate number 1. This rating seems plausible on such a thin ballot, given that I tend to give high ratings to very high-peak pitchers, but I'm not certain.

Bruce Petway and Spotswood Poles did not stand out enough for me for them to make my ballot.

1. Rube Foster (X)
2. Roger Bresnahan (4)
3. Bobby Wallace (5)
4. Jake Beckley (6)
5. Eddie Cicotte (2)
6. George "Rube" Waddell (3)
7. Lip Pike (8)
8. Hughie Jennings (10)
9. George Van Haltren (X)
10. Jimmy Ryan (14)
11. Dickey Pearce (7)
12. Frank Chance (11)
13. Cupid Childs (15)
14. Hugh Duffy (X)
15. John McGraw (12)

Sheckard and Griffith are in my top 20. Thompson was good, but his stats are distorted because his best years were in extremely high-scoring environments; also, injuries hurt his productivity in the middle of his career. I have Caruthers behind Welch and McCormick among unelected 1880s pitchers.
   16. Daryn Posted: June 23, 2004 at 12:31 PM (#693657)
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. Keep coming out of the woodwork Foster lovers.

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. 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. I see the election of Wallace as our first mistake.

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.

Sixteen to Twenty

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, rather than higher.
   17. Rusty Priske Posted: June 23, 2004 at 12:55 PM (#693663)
Possible PHoM entries: Welch, Poles (not sure yet)

1. Bobby Wallace (1,1,2)

2. Jimmy Sheckard (2,2,3)

3. Bob Caruthers (3,4,5)

4. George Van Haltren (4,3,4)

5. Mickey Welch (6,5,9)

6. Jake Beckley (5,9,7)

7. Rube Foster (9,9,11)

8. Lip Pike (7,x,x)

9. Jimmy Ryan (8,10,10)

10. Dickey Pearce (10,7,8)

11. Spotswood Poles (new)

12. Tommy Leach (14,15,13)

13. Bill Monroe (11,13,14)

14. Hugh Duffy (15,14,15)

15. Clark Griffith (x,x,x)
   18. Howie Menckel Posted: June 23, 2004 at 01:06 PM (#693671)
Welch and Pike seem like fertile ones for all to reconsider.
Pike would be a final 1870s player, no real relevance to 'watering-down' of HOM.
Welch? I think some thought we had closed out our 1880s pitchers, but are Sheckard or Wallace any more dominant as hitters than Welch was a pitcher? (Ok, Wallace a positional bonus). We've shown that we won't just walk a guy in with 300 wins, but that doesn't mean we have to pummel him for all eternity. I think he just sneaks in for our experiment...
   19. Michael Bass Posted: June 23, 2004 at 01:07 PM (#693672)
Poles strikes me as a mildly lesser Pete Hill. Hill was 5th on my ballot, so as even as this is, that puts Poles on my ballot, but pretty damn low.

Petway is not my type of catcher. I prefer good offense/bad defense over bad defense/good offense. Petway has a very strong defensive reputation, but his bat looks outright anemic to me. In any case, he doesn't look better than Bresnahan to me, so he slots in right behind him somewhere in the 20s.


With the addition of two strong NL candidates, I decided the time was appropriate to reconsider what exactly I want in my HOM ballot. On past ballots, I have guys who had very strong careers, but who we know were not great in the middle positions, and guys with largely undocumented careers who have some strong evidence of being great in low ballot positions (or off ballot). I don't like this; the upside to the three beneficiaries of this change are that they were truly great, top shelf players who were just in the wrong league at the wrong time. The downside of all of them is that they were just very good players, and I'm not sure anyone below them in this reordering has much of a beef about that.

It's not a drastic change, but it's enough that I wanted to justify it.


Prelim Ballot

1. Wallace
2. Caruthers
3. Van Haltren
4. Sheckhard
5. Ryan
6. Thompson
7. Monroe - Bad timing for him, not early enough to stand out alone like Grant, not late enough for a fully documented career. What is documented and the anecdotal evidence suggests greatness, even at a relatively advanced age.
8. Foster - His greatness is almost not in dispute. The career length is, but I don't see any Cy Youngs on this ballot. Would rank even higher, but I prefer hitters to pitchers generally.
9. Griffiths
10. F. Jones - The big loser in this, though I still am his 2nd or 3rd best friend. To me, like I said above, even if I'm wrong and Monroe/Foster were just very good, Jones doesn't have much complaint about that.
11. Childs
12. Pearce - Does not rank as high as the two NLers, because the evidence does not really indicate domination. However, depending on how you weight defense, he may well have been the best player, and he certainly had a long career. This is his first ballot appearance for me.
13. Poles
14. Leach
15. Beckley
   20. PhillyBooster Posted: June 23, 2004 at 01:08 PM (#693673)
Since my chart last year got such raves . . .

Once again, left field is my only "unrepresented" position (see end of 1928 ballot thread for extended anti-Sheckard rant). Centerfield is unjustifiably underrepresented, with only 3.5 centerfielders (Hines, Gore, Billy Hamilton, and half of Pete Hill), two of whom were inducted in 1898. That leaves Billy Hamilton as the only full-time CF inducted between 1899 and now. Reconsidered CF now requires my Top 5 to extend to 7 names in order to reach one who does not make the Top 30 (F. Jones), and he has just been reconsidered down to #31.

With Baker and McGinnity gone, I gave the new bottom ballot spots to Chance and Browning. The top two candidates this year get slotted in the 16-20 category pending further reconsideration. Is there any reason to believe Poles is better than anyone I have listed above him? If not, he's down there. Petway I like a lot. He's tentatively #16 with a bullet, and could dislodge someone as I do more research.

In just three years, my ballot have gone from 50%+ pitchers and Negro leaguers down to just 3 pitchers (including Rube Foster). Has everyone caught up to me, or have I swung too far the other way? With 3 more pitchers and 3 more Negro Leaguers in the 16-30 chart, I'll be re-examining them (and everyone else) before next week.

Bold = "on ballot"; Italics = Top 30; Plain text = not top 30 (or necessarily even Top 50)

P: Caruthers, Foster, Welch, Griffith, McCormick, Willis, Waddell, Mullane, Cicotte

C: Bresnahan, Petway, Clements, McGuire, Meyers, Kling

1B: Beckley, Chance, Konetchy, S. White, Orr

2B: Childs, Evers, Monroe, Doyle, Dunlap

SS: Pearce, Wallace, Jennings, Long, Tinker

3B: Williamson,McGraw, Leach, Cross

LF: Sheckard, C. Jones, York, O'Neill, Dougherty

CF: Pike, van Haltren, Browning, Poles, Duffy, Ryan, F. Jones

RF: Thompson, Cravath, Tiernan, Donovan, O. Burns
   21. PhillyBooster Posted: June 23, 2004 at 01:29 PM (#693683)
Lip Pike made my PHoM in 1928 along with Baker. McGinnity had been in since 1921. This year looks to be Rube Foster and Sam Thompson. I had Baker and McGinnity 4 and 5, so some mid-candidate guys are making some relatively big jumps.


1. Caruthers (1)
2. Beckley (2)
3. Pike (7)
4. Bresnahan (3)
5. Foster (8)
6. Thompson (9)
7. Cravath (6)
8. Pearce (10)
9. Welch (12)
10. Childs (11)
11. van Haltren (14)
12. Browning (off)
13. Chance (off)
14. Wallace (15)
15. Williamson (13)

16-20: Petway, Konetchy, Griffith, Evers, Monroe
21-25: Sheckard, Poles, C. Jones, Jennings, McCormick
26-30: Doyle, Duffy, Ryan, Willis, McGraw

Also, my "Top By Position" list above only had 9 pitchers. Tommy Bond is #10.
   22. Jeff M Posted: June 23, 2004 at 02:37 PM (#693761)
I also discovered that I had wiped out half of Rube Foster's career with a programming error.

I think this may be the first instance of someone leaping from off the ballot to #1. :)

I had the same problem with a player in the 1900s (I can't remember which one), and he vaulted several places.
   23. jhwinfrey Posted: June 23, 2004 at 02:47 PM (#693779)
Here's my preliminary ballot:

1.Mickey Welch
2.Bob Caruthers
3.Dickey Pearce
4.Jake Beckley
5.Sam Thompson
6.Rube Waddell
7.Roger Breshnahan
8.Addie Joss
9.Rube Foster
10.Lip Pike
11.Spotswood Poles
12.Bill Monroe
13.George Van Haltren
14.Tony Mullane
15.Bobby Wallace

I realized that I had not been considering Rube Foster seriously enough. (Perhaps the same is true for John McGraw and Clark Griffith.) So he makes the biggest jump. Bob Caruthers I am liking more and more and Tony Mullane I am liking less and less. I don't think the positional array is of any importance, but FWIW I am without 3B and LF.
   24. jhwinfrey Posted: June 23, 2004 at 02:52 PM (#693791)
And off the ballot, in order:

15-20: Sheckard, Petway, Leach, Ryan, Willis
21-25: Duffy, Doyle, Griffith, Cravath, Konetchy
26-30: Browning, Cicotte, Evers, Milan, Huggins
31-35: Childs, Bush, Jennings, Vaughn, Sallee
   25. Al Peterson Posted: June 23, 2004 at 02:57 PM (#693803)
Since we're reevaluating returning candidates I thought I'd point out the SABR bioproject has the Hippo Vaughn bio here. Interesting to note his two no-hitters and 220+ wins at the minor league level. Seems like he had a Joe McGinnity type career, eating innings in the majors for awhile before heading to the minors for another career.
   26. PhillyBooster Posted: June 23, 2004 at 03:14 PM (#693828)
Four responses to Hippo Vaugn.

1) That's 220+ wins at the minor league AND SEMI-PRO level.

2) Minor league accomplishments after you wash out of the majors are not comparable to minor league accomplishments from before you were "discovered" in an imperfect minor league system (e.g., Cravath). As evidence of the difference, note that his comeback attempts with the Cubs failed.

3) "he pitched in various minor and semi-pro leagues, mostly with Beloit, the Logan Squares of Chicago, and the Chicago Mills until 1937, when he was forty-nine." These are not exactly the "top minors". I would be extremely dubious of Caucasian accomplishments outside the top minor leagues -- the International League (East), American Association (Central), or Pacific Coast League (West).

4) Vaughn's career will be going on for 9 more years. Vaughn hasn't gotten a lot of these wins yet.
   27. Dag Nabbit: secretary of the World Banana Forum Posted: June 23, 2004 at 03:29 PM (#693872)
Willis: W/L %age not impressive. ERA+ lower than any enshrinee. Team performance pulls down player.

Except that team performance didn't pull him down. Average run support & above average defensive support.
   28. Guapo Posted: June 23, 2004 at 03:36 PM (#693890)
Three notes:

(1) I'm probably going to have Rube Foster #1 this week as well.

(2) I have a feeling I'm going to be Petway's best friend... just what I've been looking for, a catcher with a long, established career to give a massive positional bonus to! On this weak ballot, I see him as a potential top 5.

(3) I believe I'm the only one to vote for Hippo Vaughn so far. Don't expect him to stay on my ballot for long- PhillyBooster makes some good points above. I would point out that he's comparable to Cicotte, who has gotten some support (although I can see why people would rank Cicotte higher). I just like Vaughn's peak better.
   29. PhillyBooster Posted: June 23, 2004 at 03:41 PM (#693907)

I think that was Kelly's point. The GOOD performance of his teammates pulls down OUR ranking of the player, not that the bad performance of his teammates pulls down his statistics.
   30. Dag Nabbit: secretary of the World Banana Forum Posted: June 23, 2004 at 03:48 PM (#693928)
Provisional ordering:

1. Jimmy Sheckard
2. Bobby Wallace
3. Jake Beckley
4. Dickey Pearce
5. Mickey Welch
6. Clark Griffith
7. Sam Thompson
8. Tommy Leach
9. George Van Haltren
10. Jimmy Ryan
11. Bob Caruthers
12. Cupid Childs
13. Larry Doyle
14. Charlie Jones
15. Joe Tinker

Right now, I got Spot Poles at #28 on my ballot. Among outfielders, I can't see putting him ahead of Sheckard, Thompson, Van Haltren, Ryan, Jones, Cravvath, Browning, Duffy, or Pike. And it makes it mighty tough to get near the ballot in those circumstances.

I have Petway at #30, which may be too high, but since he's never getting on my ballot that's not a huge concern I have.
   31. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:03 PM (#693970)
Pearce: Was that really baseball?

   32. ronw Posted: June 23, 2004 at 04:20 PM (#694019)
Two contemporary pitchers N and A:


Pitcher N - 113 ERA+, 60.5 WARP1, 46.4 WARP3, 354 WS.

Pitcher A - 118 ERA+, 94.6 WARP1, 57.5 WARP3, 399 WS.

Direct WARP3 (because it adjusts for league quality) comparison, year by year

Year 1 - N 3.3; A DNP
Year 2 - N 1.4; A -1.2
Year 3 - N -1.6; A 5.5
Year 4 - N 1.0; A 1.1
Year 5 - N 8.8; A 10.4
Year 6 - N 6.8; A DNP
Year 7 - N 2.5; A 4.5
Year 8 - N 6.9; A 5.9
Year 9 - N 7.3; A 4.1
Year 10 - N 7.3; A 3.6
Year 11 - N 5.8; A 6.0
Year 12 - N -1.9; A 5.5
Year 13 - N -.2; A 5.7
Year 14 - N DNP; A 5.9
Year 15 - N DNP; A 0.5

Or, according to best years

1 - A 10.4; N 8.8
2 - N 7.3; A 6.0
3 - N 7.3; A 5.9
4 - N 6.9; A 5.9
5 - N 6.8; A 5.7
6 - N 5.8; A 5.5
7 - A 5.5; N 3.3
8 - A 4.5; N 2.5
9 - A 4.1; N 1.4
10 - A 3.6; N 1.0
11 - A 1.1; N -.2
12 - A .5; N -1.9
13 - A -1.2; N - 2.6

It appears that the career numbers and the head-to-head WARP-3 comparison favor pitcher A, while ordering the best years favors pitcher N.

In addition, pitcher N has a 307-210 lifetime record, while pitcher A finished at 284-220.

More could be said on this comparison, including that pitcher A played in weaker leagues, pitcher N had the run support and fielding support of one of the best teams in baseball during much of his career, etc., but the food for thought of this post is:

If you have Mickey Welch on or near your ballot, where is Tony Mullane?
   33. Dag Nabbit: secretary of the World Banana Forum Posted: June 23, 2004 at 05:33 PM (#694219)
If you have Mickey Welch on or near your ballot, where is Tony Mullane?

I got Welch at 5 & Mullane at 39.

Few things, first there is some league adjustment. I have no set standard percentile reduction I work with, but the league adjustment's enough to knock out almost all the difference in ERA+ between the two.

Next, let's look at support from their teams. You write: pitcher N had the run support and fielding support of one of the best teams in baseball during much of his career, etc

How much support did Welch really get from his teams? As near as I can tell, it wasn't that much. As mentioned in earlier elections, his run support was usually worse than the run support for Keefe as Welch often got matched up against better pitchers than Keefe did. His offensive support wasn't that great. I'd reckon it gave him 3 wins.

Defensive support wasn't nearly as good as it was for most 1880s pitchers. In general, pitchers from this era who were good had above average run support, I figure Welch's defensive support was a little above average (5.4 win shares above average), but that ain't much. Comes out to 2 wins worth of support. So he keeps his 300 wins.

How's it affect his ERA+? This I'm not too clear on - since everyone not named Pud Galvin from back then had good defensive support, I'm not sure if that's a sign there's a bug in how win shares separates fielding from pitching or if defense really was that important. On the one hand, having above average run support should knock down his ERA+, but having some of the worst defensive support in the 1880s makes me wonder if I should kick it up. In general, I'd go with the former, but only a little bit & knock it down a point or two.

Compare that with the defensive support of Tony Mullane. He's got the 4th best fielding support of anyone I've seen at +17.5 - not only is that 5-6 wins worth of defense, but it also leads to the question of how does that affect his ERA+. Not only is it an above average D, but even for his era it was great D, so this really should cost him some points in ERA+. Between the fielding adjustment & the league adjustment, I reckon Mullane ends up with a worse ERA+ than Welch.

I should mention that Mullane's run support was pretty bad & he gains 9 wins in the adjustment, most of those, however, he gives right back in the defensive adjustment. Like Welch, his W/L when adjusted for O & D only changes a little, but Welch still has an edge in W & L.

Also, let's look at counting stats - more innings for Welch, more wins., more K's. . . Mullane has more adjusted losses (when including the D adjustment).

So Welch's a better pitcher, pitched more innings, got better results, & did it in a better league. All this puts him above Mullane.

But by 34 slots? The differences are never that severe, are they? Well, here's the way I look at it. I think Bill James once said that baseball talent's like a pyramid - every lower level has ten times as many players as the level below it. So a minor difference can lead to a lot of players falling between them. Also, as we do more & more players our backlog gets bigger & bigger also adding to the distance between them. Maybe I do have him too low, but I don't see him being ballot-worthy & I stand by my decision to put Welch in the #5 slot.
   34. Daryn Posted: June 23, 2004 at 05:35 PM (#694223)

I have Welch at 2 and Mullane in an eight way tie for 24th with seven other pitchers. I'm not going to bother to sort them (the 8 way tie) out until/unless they get closer to the ballot.

That being said, I see a big difference between the two. I don't use WARP at all -- I think it is fundamentally flawed and in particular does not adjust well for the 19th Century. I like Win Shares and traditional stats, so the difference in both Wins and Winning Percentage matter to me. Another eyeball difference is how the two finish in Grey Ink, HOF Monitor and HOF Standards -- there are about 15 pitchers between them and quite a difference in raw numbers. To me, particularly on this ballot, the #1 candidate is probably only 15% better than the number 25 candidate, so smallish differences mean a lot. That's how I see it anyway.
   35. Daryn Posted: June 23, 2004 at 05:41 PM (#694235)
And Ron, nice to see you have the best pitcher available at the number one pitching spot on your ballot even if you are not a Welch fan.
   36. TomH Posted: June 23, 2004 at 05:44 PM (#694244)
RCAA and RCAP for Van Haltren and Ryan:

As I was reconsidering my OF set, I noticed this oddity:
Van Haltren and Ryan are seen by most systems as fairly even hitters. GVH has an edge in OWP, but about even in EqA. GVH's career length gives him more RCAA and more BRAR.
GVH played mostly CF. Ryan played half CF, half corner OF.
By the BP system, Ryan loses a few more runs going from BRAR to BRARP. This makes sense.
By the Lee Sinins encyclopedia, GVH loses many more runs going from RCAA to RCAP; so that Ryan looks to be the superior player by RCAP. I do NOT understand this: anyone got some insight?
A note: GVH finished 8th or better in scoring runs 8 times between 1889 and 1900.
   37. Max Parkinson Posted: June 23, 2004 at 06:03 PM (#694285)
So many years after he began playing the game, Joe Start will be enshrined in the MP HoM in 1929! He will go in alongside Joe Jackson (who will not be invited to the ceremony).

For my personal hall, I'm pretty sure that the '60s and '70s are almost closed. Cal McVey is scheduled for induction next year, and Tommy Bond might just make it before the 33-34 onslaught, but he's touch and go. Harry Wright just isn't going to get there - he'll have to wait for a Pioneer wing along with Jim Creighton.

Prelim order (MP HoMers in Bold):

1. Hugh Jennings
2. Bob Caruthers
3. Sam Thompson
4. Jimmy Sheckard
5. Dickey Pearce
6. Bobby Wallace
7. Lip Pike
8. Eddie cicotte
9. Fielder Jones
10. Jim McCormick
11. Clark Griffith
12. George Van Haltren
13. Tommy Bond
14. Bruce Petway
15. Jake Beckley

16-20. Monroe, Nash, Ryan, Williamson, Poles
21-25. Whitney, Cross, Foster, Buffinton, Konetchy
26-30. McGraw, Waddell, King, Seymour, Long
31-35. Force, J. Williams, Childs, Duffy, Willis
36-40. Tannehill, Tenney, Doc White, Griffin, Breitenstein
41-45. Hawley, Tiernan, Hutchison, Mullin, H. Davis
46-50. Cravath, Orth, Rucker, Elmer Smith, B. Bradley

No need for lots of comments on everyone, but as the electorate becomes more and more fractured - at least until the superstars hit in 33 and 34 - I'd love to debate the relative merits of my top 3 with the voters that have them in the 20s and 30s, while I have their top guys (I'm thinking of Childs, Duffy and McGraw) in my 20-30 range. Fire away...
   38. OCF Posted: June 23, 2004 at 06:21 PM (#694326)
Evers: Hounded by the "Were all the Cubs just really good?" question. Did not hit well.

I prefer to think of him as a late-blooming hitter, who didn't find himself at the plate until he was 26. A .402 OBP in that deepest of deadball years, 1908, certainly catches your attention.

The following are sorted season totals of my home-brewed version of run-context-normalized runs created above average for four players:
Evers:    59 44 39 34 30 28 18 12 10  9  7  5  1  0 -7
Childs:   61 56 34 32 28 20 15  9 -1 -1 -5-20
Doyle:    68 52 47 42 37 35 29 29 22 21 18 17 13 -5
Wallace:  35 29 23 17 14 12 12 10  9  9  7  0 -3 -6 -7 -9-10-18

For Wallace, that's just the years 1895-1913 - the rest would just clutter it up. Evers's best year, the 59 above, is indeed 1908.
   39. Chris Cobb Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:27 PM (#694447)
Chris J.'s assessment of Welch vs. Mullane pretty much matches mine (as it should, since mine uses his RSI numbers).

In my view, WARP underestimates Welch because they don't use RSI data: Welch did not have the run support Keefe did, but if you're evaluating pitchers based on team offense you can't make this distinction.

Chris J is also correct that Mullane had stellar defensive support (remember why Bid McPhee is in the HoM?) while Welch's was not so special.

Anyway, my homegrown system doesn't see them as particularly close

Pitcher -- career win shares -- ws above avg. -- peak rate
Welch -- 406 -- 162 -- 26.44 ws/365 ip
Mullane -- 346 -- 140 -- 26.55 ws/365 ip

I have Welch at 5 and Mullane at 24.
   40. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:34 PM (#694452)

1) Dickey Pearce
2) Cupid Childs
3) Lip Pike
4) Charley Jones
5) Tom York
6) Vic Willis
7) Ed Konetchy
8) Roger Bresnahan
9) Rube Foster
10) Bill Monroe
11) Hugh Duffy
12) Frank Chance
13) Rube Waddell
14) Bob Caruthers
15) Sam Thompson

Foster finally makes my ballot, while Thompson pops on again after "years" off (I decided against Beckley once again - it was extremely close).
   41. TomH Posted: June 23, 2004 at 07:47 PM (#694479)
Is anyone tracking our HoM by years played; I'd like to see a chart of year vs # of HOMers if ya got one, to see if my timelining perspective lines up.
   42. TomH Posted: June 23, 2004 at 08:40 PM (#694541)
Bobby Wallace - rated only 36th in the NBJHA - should we honor him?
Here's a chart of some great shortstops, thier career win shares, and career games played:
player ...WS ...G
Wallace .348 2383 (57 as pitcher)
Ozzie ...326 2573
Banks ..332 2528
Ripken ..419 3001
Trammell318 2293
Appling .378 2422

Bobby don't look too shabby here, does he? How many shortstops are there who garnered MORE Win Shares than Wallace and played FEWER games? Two: Arky Vaughan and George Davis.

The only way Wallace doesn't rate highly is if you are a strong "big seasons" voter.
   43. PhillyBooster Posted: June 23, 2004 at 08:57 PM (#694559)
Players only counted if they appeared in (approximately) half of their team games (i.e., were semi-regulars). All errors are due to my own sloppiness.

Year: Total (Nat.L/AA-PL-AL/Neg.L.-Fed.L.)

1871: 8
1872: 9
1873: 10
1874: 10
1875: 10
1876: 10
1877: 9
1878: 11
1879: 16
1880: 15
1881: 20
1882: 20 (19/1/0)
1883: 20 (17/3/0)
1884: 21 (18/3/0)
1885: 21 (19/2/0)
1886: 21 (18/2/1)
1887: 21 (18/2/1)
1888: 21 (18/2/1)
1889: 22 (18/3/1)
1890: 27 (12/14/1)
1891: 24 (20/3/1)
1892: 26 (25/0/1)
1893: 21 (20/0/1)
1894: 21 (19/0/2)
1895: 18 (16/0/2)
1896: 18 (16/0/2)
1897: 18 (16/0/2)
1898: 18 (16/0/2)
1899: 18 (16/0/2)
1900: 18 (16/0/2)
1901: 19 (12/5/2)
1902: 18 (6/10/2)
1903: 17 (7/8/2)
1904: 20 (8/10/2)
1905: 21 (9/10/2)
1906: 17 (7/8/2)
1907: 17 (6/9/2)
1908: 19 (7/10/2)
1909: 14 (5/7/2)
1910: 12 (4/6/2)
1911: 13 (5/6/2)
1912: 11 (3/6/2)
1913: 11 (3/6/2)
1914: 10 (2/5/3)
1915: 10 (2/4/4)
1916: 8 (2/5/1)
1917: 6 (2/3/1)
1918: 3 (1/1/1)
1919: 3 (0/2/1)
1920: 2 (0/1/1)
1921: 2 (0/1/1)
1922: 1 (0/0/1)
1923: 1 (0/0/1)
1924: 1 (0/0/1)
1925: 1 (0/0/1)
   44. DavidFoss Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:01 PM (#694567)
Thanks PhillyBooster!
   45. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:10 PM (#694575)
Bobby Wallace - rated only 36th in the NBJHA - should we honor him?
Here's a chart of some great shortstops, thier career win shares, and career games played:
player ...WS ...G
Wallace .348 2383 (57 as pitcher)
Ozzie ...326 2573
Banks ..332 2528
Ripken ..419 3001
Trammell318 2293
Appling .378 2422

Wallace's WS are somewhat inflated due to his pitching (his pitching WS are 31).

Considering his competition, his WS per 162 games are not that special, either.
   46. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:14 PM (#694581)
1890: 27 (12/14/1)

Can this record be broken?
   47. DavidFoss Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:41 PM (#694615)
Can this record be broken?

Sure... we still have Thompson, Caruthers, Beckley, Childs, Welch... :-)

Yeah... but I know what you mean. Maybe some point from 1925-1942 when the Negro Leagues are in full swing.
   48. karlmagnus Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:42 PM (#694617)
That 1890 figure, even with the huge crimp we put in HOM elections by having only 1 in most years to 1920, suggests that talent is in fact NOT evenly distributed and that say 1885-1890 was a Golden Age of early baseball, the end of a huge growth period, to be followed by a recession in 1892-1900 after the leagues went bust and salaries dropped sharply (bear in mind there was a big, big recession in the US economy in 1893-96.) Refusing to elect more HOMers from that period is rather like refusing to honor more playwrights and poets from Shakespeare's London.
   49. karlmagnus Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:57 PM (#694640)
Electing 3 a year from 1960, with the average HOMer having say a 15 year career, suggests that we'll average 45 HOMers a year at our peak in 1975-85 (ie before some eligibles are still playing.)
   50. karlmagnus Posted: June 23, 2004 at 09:58 PM (#694642)
make that "before some potential HOMers are still playing and therefore not eligible." Geez, put the brain in gear before pressing the submit button!
   51. PhillyBooster Posted: June 23, 2004 at 10:09 PM (#694657)
I think the main issue here is not the recession of 1893, but the mound change of 1893.

How many potential all-time greats had great years in 1890-1892, only to have their careers de-railed by a major rule change? How many potential HoMers would have thrived post-1893, but were already too old by then to put together solid careers?

The late 1890s are littered with the decaying corpses of guys like Gus Weyhing, who would have been first-ballot if his 1893-1901 looked anything like 1887-1892. See, also, Jake Stenzel.

I think, in the end, 1893-1900 will stand out as a dead-zone more than the preceding decade will stand out as a golden age.
   52. sunnyday2 Posted: June 23, 2004 at 10:10 PM (#694658)
It was stated here a while back that this is (or is "like," I forget which) a science project. What's needed therefore is information, more information and especially new information. Advocacy is not welcome.

A constructive reply.

1. New information is quite often completely ignored. DavidFoss' info about the 1860s is an obvious case in point, but you can all think of others. But just generally, the first impression each of us has of each candidate tends to be the last. It is impervious to change. Just look at the annual results.

2. A lot of said new information *should* be ignored and it's hard to tell at a glance what is really good and useful and what is not. But can we do a better job of incorporating new information into our ballots?

3. If this really is a science project, maybe we should have peer review (like the articles on Baseball Primer). A committee could review incoming posts to make sure they're up to date on the latest info before they're posted.... Well, no. We do have a "journal of record" (you're reading it) but otherwise this is just not our model.

4. But if it was, what kinds of articles and posts would there be? Well, there would be information, to be sure. But information is not knowledge. In any science project, you would also see a lot of discussion from a wider perspective, from "40,000 feet," as they say. That would be where there would be analysis, synthesis, hypotheses and theories that would help us to interpret the information and sort out the really significant and useful information from the factoids.

It seems to me that rather than expanding our ballots to 20 players, another strategy to cope with the fragmentation of our balloting would be something like the above, some focused/directed research and discussion of the major theories that shape our ballots:

• timelines, a pennant is a pennant, how to value the 19th century versus the 20th, etc.

• value versus ability (which is an issue unto itself but also is highly relevant to the timeline issue)

• position mix

• how to value Negro Leaguers; or to put it in a broader sense, how (and how much) to consider non-statistical information and/or small samples; also of obvious relevance to the earlier 19th century

So when I say that people ignore new information, that is not altogether a criticism. I wonder, though, whether there could be more conversation on some of these topics of what kind of information is really needed, on what theoretical or hypothetical basis. Then, maybe, some research could be directed into information that more people want, and that more people agree would be relevant to their concerns, and which might be more likely to actually affect people's ballots.

I don't have a lot of time to contribute, of course. But if we could identify 3-4 key questions, and all go out and do the research that is indicated for those questions, maybe we could resolve some things and not be going back over the same ground every year.
   53. DavidFoss Posted: June 23, 2004 at 10:54 PM (#694719)
Nice reply Marc/sunnyday2.

I'm a scientist and I things are not necessarily as idyllic in the world of science as others may seem it is. It would be quite an understatement to say that there can be quite a bit of "lively debate".

Rick A. said two things in the ballot thread pertaining to this topic (page 2 -- post 69):

"He was always a very good debater, and I liked how he stuck to his guns when questioned about his opinions."


"As an aside, we should all remember that this is just a fun project, not a blood and guts war. We all have very strong opinions about who should be elected, but we should not let that affect our interactions with each other on this project. All of these players that we're voting for have their strong points, and I can at least see the arguments for each of them, although I may not agree with some of them."

It's certainly not trivial to balance those two! :-) Sarcasm & Humor are fun sometimes, too, but without facial expressions, its tough to interpret things from time to time. Smileys can only do so much.

I dunno... I guess I try to keep the discussion about baseball and the ballot. Try not to get too wound up if someone leaves my #1 pick off their ballot. Ad hominem attacks are easy to fall into, but in this type of project, it would be nice to keep them to a minimum. Technically, its a logical fallacy anyways.

I welcome debate... but at times it appears obvious that a FO-Candidates and EO-Candidates really twist the intrepretations of the data and only present what supports their case. Personally, I'm more swayed by a balanced argument where poster is well aware of any weaknesses that their candidate has.

These ballots are getting very lean and its very tough to find out the right order of these guys on my ballot. My vote would be to keep the ballot size at 15 as I feel embarrassed that my bottom-ballot selections are getting points. There is bound to be some contention in the next few ballots. It will be a big relief to get an injection of new candidates soon.
   54. karlmagnus Posted: June 23, 2004 at 11:52 PM (#694934)
As a banker and journalist, I disagree with the idea that scientific objectivity is likely to emerge from a group of voters who are only human. In real life, I expect people to get enthusiasms and dislikes, often for perfectly legitimate reasons, and to try to "make a sale" to other electors as convincingly as possible.

It's up to us to analyse the evidence presented and use or discard it. In the case of DavidFoss's extremely helpful 1860s info it caused me to rework the pioneer section of the ballot completely, putting Pearce at the top, but believing that none of the 4 pioneers were slam-dunks, and all were pretty close (since the NA stats for Meyerle and H. Wright were better than those for Pearce and Pike, whereas the pre-NA stats were the other way about.) Pearce should make my PHOM this year or in '30.

By and large, I think that except for the completely obvious (Young, Wagner), the more debate a candidate gets, the more likely he is to be HOM-worthy -- the ones I worry about are the ones like Flick and Walsh who get major sabermetric brownie points and slip in before we've had a chance to consider them in real depth -- the Pearce/Thompson/Caruthers candidates, on the ballot for 25 years, benefit from huge amounts of analyis, much of it rational.

I think the weakest candidates will be elected after 1960, because of the increase to 3 a year -- I think it most unlikely that 45 HOM-worthy players were active at all times in the last 5 decades and very probable that some marginal candidates appearing during mild droughts will slip in when they "shouldn't." I'm less worried about electing unworthy Negro League candidates, because after 1934 they will be competing in a crowded field.
   55. Jeff M Posted: June 24, 2004 at 12:36 AM (#695142)
I welcome debate... but at times it appears obvious that a FO-Candidates and EO-Candidates really twist the intrepretations of the data and only present what supports their case. Personally, I'm more swayed by a balanced argument where poster is well aware of any weaknesses that their candidate has.

I'm the one that used the term "science project" but the quote above is the gist of what I meant.
   56. Kelly in SD Posted: June 24, 2004 at 12:42 AM (#695182)
While I have not had a counted vote, I have lurked here for a long time. I can say for a fact that the more some players are debated, the more my mind is changed. Specifically, John's defenses of Pearce and Foss's 1860's research have caused me to totally reevaluate early players. Also, recent comments about Clark Griffith have caused me to look at him again and I am looking at moving him up higher.
Over the next few elections, when there are no automatics, I hope everyone takes the time to write out why these players deserve to be elected, not just that they are next on your list. Seeing how someone makes up their list could help me (and maybe other voters) make a decision on whether a player should be 6th or 10th, 12th or off the ballot, because the players are so close. I really don't want to make a mistake, so all the info and comments are greatly appreciated.
Thank you.
   57. Jeff M Posted: June 24, 2004 at 12:48 AM (#695213)
...without facial expressions, its tough to interpret things from time to time.

Right. I think that if any of us reads someone's post and gets irritated (and it has happened to every one of us), we ought to remind ourselves that (1) the people in this project are actually nice, (2) no one is here to hurt anyone else's feelings (with the exception of one post out of the thousands that have been posted over the life of this project) and (3) posts should be construed in their most favorable light, exactly because we don't have facial expressions to interpret. We need to give the benefit of the doubt.

That's from the reader's perspective. From the writer's perspective, we also have to be sensitive to the fact our posts may be misconstrued or taken the wrong way because our faces can't be seen. I'm going to do a better job of keeping that in mind, and it's a good lesson for everyone.

...back to baseball...
   58. jimd Posted: June 24, 2004 at 01:27 AM (#695351)
The HOMers of 1890: (by number of seasons remaining as a regular)

Nearing the end:
0: Hines, White, Radbourn
1: Galvin, Gore, Richardson, Keefe
2: Kelly, Bennett, Stovey
3: O'Rourke, Clarkson
4: Ward, Glasscock, Ewing, Brouthers

Mid-career (well, maybe)
6: Connor
7: Anson, Rusie
9: McPhee

Getting started:
??: Grant
11: Hamilton
12: Delahanty
13: Nichols
14: Burkett
17: Davis
19: Young
   59. sunnyday2 Posted: June 24, 2004 at 02:10 AM (#695502)
Prelim. Some big changes, though not at the top. I'm reverting to more emphasis on peak.

1. Dickey Pearce (1-1 last 2 wks)--I am sure Dickey played baseball and thanks to DavidFoss we now have not only anecdotal but statistical evidence of his value, measured in H, R and TB. Contrary to what Kelly in SD said above, I think that with one notable exception Pearce was still typically the #2-3 hitter on the Atlantics after Start took over as the #1 guy. The more I've learned about Dickey, the more I think Ozzie Smith is his comp, only Dickey carried a somewhat bigger stick.

2. Bob Caruthers (2-3 last week)--in sim scores, they say unique is good. Caruthers was a unique talent (none of the other big hitting pitchers did both as well and for as long) and biggest star of the AA.

3. Sam Thompson (4-4)--I don't think of Sam's as a short career a) for his time and b) among his true peers, which are the not-first-ballot-not-NB-HoMers. Rating based mostly on WS and WARP peaks, but OPS+ is a good shorthand for Sam.

4. Hughie Jennings (5-5)--highest peak of any post-NA, 19th century position player; higher even than, well, you name 'em, considering he was a GG SS as well as an offensive powerhouse.

5. Lip Pike (6-6)--another not-short career for his time and place. OPS+ shorthand.

6. Tommy Bond (7-7)--this is even after I discount his value by 50% and distribute it to his fielders (ditto Caruthers and all pre-'93 pitchers). Yes, the structure of the game required him and his peers to throw all those innings; it also required him to blow out his arm. So I figure the two cancel out and what's left is huge value, more pitching value than anybody between Spalding and Radbourn-Keefe-Clarkson.

(6a. Joe McGinnity makes my PHoM this year along with Tommy Bond. Big year for pitchers, not for the stock market [apropos of nothing].)

7. Charley Jones (9-9)--major lumber. OPS+ shorthand.

(7a. Jimmy Collins in line for PHoM soon.)

8 (tie, or better yet, cop-out). I've been going round and round about the 2Bs for decades. As of today I'll just say that these guys all look like HoMers to me and virtually indistinguishable. Will change tomorrow. In alpha order:

a. Cupid Childs (13-10)--big peak even with the '91 discount; it was just one year.

b. Larry Doyle (10-12)--unless the NL was really that bad?

c. Fred Dunlap (x-x)--won't go away, even with a 65% (!) discount for '84.

d. Bill Monroe (12-14)--looks equal to Grant to me.

(8e. Frank Grant in line for PHoM soon.)

9. Ed Williamson (14-11)--Jimmy Collins is his comp. I don't see how his 27 HR in '84 actually hurt his team. Woulda been nice, in fact, if King Kelly and George Gore had hit more than 6 and 4, respectively.

10. Bobby Wallace (x-x)--peaked at #5 once upon a time. A poor man's Davis or Dahlen, but lack of peak moves him down.

11. Rube Foster (1st time on my ballot)--somebody last week noted that his contemporaries probably would have scoffed at the idea that Pete Hill was better. That snapped the light on for me.

12. Jim McCormick (x-15)--yes, a 'victim" of his times, but value is value, and he accumulated a lot of it, real fast.

13. Pete Browning (11-13)--see Charley Jones, including the part about OPS+ shorthand.

(13a-b-c-d. Joe Kelley, Pete Hill, Sherry Magee and Harry Stovey may join Sheckard in my PHoM someday, or not. On average the already HoMers are perhaps marginally better than Jimmy, or not. But none were the offensive monsters [OPS+ shorthand] of the OFers above. Actually I see Magee and Doyle as substantially equal, so I haven't quite worked that part out.)

14. Jimmy Sheckard (x-x)--peaked at #6 once, but I decided that Thompson, Pike, Jones and Browning were better in the same way that Billy Williams was better than Lou Brock, and that 3-4 OF in the top 10 were plenty. (For awhile there I hardly had any pitchers rated. Better balance now, and Sheckard happens to be the guy who suffered.)

15. Spot Poles (new)--substantially equal to Pete Hill for his peak. 'Nuff sed. Will probably drop off the ballot as I sort out the 2Bs; ditto Sheckard and Browning. But I consider myself a FOSP and he could be a PHoMer sometime in the distant future, maybe the 1960s or 1980s.

Right now it looks like the in/out line is way down here (or else below Duffy) because, hey, 10 of these guys are already in my PHoM.

16. Duffy moves up--I once had him highly rated because of his high peak. Then I moved him down because he had some pretty mediocre years, too. Then, when I had Sheckard rated 6th, I realized you could say the same of him. So I decided to rate them all for what the did rather than what they didn't.

17. Waddell moves up--needed more pitchers.
(17b. Eddie Plank trails the teammate with the peak.)
18. Leach moves up.
19. Harry Davis--can't decide about 1Bs either.
20. Bresnahan--a good player and a C, but...

21. Sol White--could be 8th, good comp to Grant.
22. Mickey Welch--never voted for him, but "300"!
(22a. Ezra Sutton--actually I have no clear idea where he goes. Behind Heinie Groh very soon.)
23. Jim Whitney--huge peak a la Caruthers.
24. Addie Joss--pretty good peak.
25. Joe Tinker--best of the poem guys.

New guys--only Poles. Petway looks like Schalk, around #40-45. Bush would be below Herman Long, around #30-35.

(And then there's Jim Galvin, who trails another 12-15 pitchers on my list.)
   60. DavidFoss Posted: June 24, 2004 at 02:37 AM (#695545)
Filling in the early data for post #43:

1857: 0
1858: 0
1859: 0
1860: 1
1861: 1
1862: 1
1863: 1
1864: 2
1865: 1
1866: 2
1867: 2
1868: 4
1869: 6
1870: 7

1871: 8
1872: 9
1873: 10
1874: 10
1875: 10
1876: 10
... etc ...

Note: A case could be made for one more in 1869 (Sutton, Alert-Rochester) and 1868 (McVey, Active-Indianapolis)... but I considered the two to be on "minor" teams.

Also, Rockford Forest City is not documented for 1867 (the year they upset the Washington Nationals on their tour). A single box from another source (the upset game) shows Barnes and Spaulding in the lineup. Add two for 1867 if you like.

I don't know where George Wright was in 1865. He was only 18 that year. His age-17 season was on his brother Harry's team.
   61. jhwinfrey Posted: June 24, 2004 at 04:14 AM (#695641)
In response to sunnyday2's thoughtful comments on information and advocacy... These are issues that I'd like to hear more about. How about a thread for "voting theory" or something similar?
   62. Kelly in SD Posted: June 24, 2004 at 09:03 AM (#695770)
I found some time to look over positives for various players (in contrast to my post of negatives). I'm glad to see some people react to what I saw as negatives.
Re: Dickey Pearce
John - I do think he played baseball as far back as 1857, but I think that the question of the quality of play is of concern to some voters.
sunnyday2 - Thank you for reminding me of that. I did not have David Foss's 1860s info with me at the time, and I was misremembering.
No sarcasm is intended in the above.
   63. Kelly in SD Posted: June 24, 2004 at 09:10 AM (#695771)
Well, I found out how long a post could be. I entered a lot of positive info about infielders and catchers, hit send, and it disappeared.
To quote Bill the Cat, "tptptptpt."
   64. Kelly in SD Posted: June 24, 2004 at 09:12 AM (#695772)
This is what I wrote about various players

Beckley: Long career with great consistency. Among position players, his 318 WS is behind Wallace, VanHaltren, Sheckard, and Leach. 3 Stats AllStar and 3 WS AllStar. 11 times in top 3 WS at position in his league. 1600 runs is 3rd most. 1575 RBI is 200 more than next eligible. 6th most XBH among all players eligible or enshrined (only Wagner, Lajoie, Crawford, Connor, and Delahanty have more).

Oh, well.
   65. Kelly in SD Posted: June 24, 2004 at 09:23 AM (#695773)
My current top 30, subject to reevaluation as we speak.

1. Welch
2. Thompson
3. Sheckard
4. Caruthers
5. Beckley
6. Childs
7. Browning
8. C. Jones
9. Monroe
10. Leach
11. Pearce
12. Pike
13. Griffith
14. Van Haltren
15. Chance
16. Konetchy
17. Wallace
18. Ryan
19. Joss
20. Jennings
21. McGraw
22. Doyle
23. Bresnahan
24. Cravath
25. Waddell
26. Bond
27. Willis
28. Mullane
29. Williamson
30. Foster

The top 10 is fluid. Slots 8-20 are fluid. 15-30 are fluid. Each time I think I have it, I find I have forgotten something and have to redo it.
   66. Jeff M Posted: June 24, 2004 at 12:46 PM (#695794)
I entered a lot of positive info about infielders and catchers, hit send, and it disappeared.

After many such disappointments, I never hit "Preview your comment" or "Submit your comment" without highlighting the entire post and copying it to the clipboard. :)
   67. DavidFoss Posted: June 24, 2004 at 02:14 PM (#695867)
After many such disappointments, I never hit "Preview your comment" or "Submit your comment" without highlighting the entire post and copying it to the clipboard. :)

I write my longer posts in wordpad first... which means I also have a collection of .txt files on my hard-drive in case something happens to the on-line versions.
   68. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 24, 2004 at 03:26 PM (#695973)
John - I do think he played baseball as far back as 1857, but I think that the question of the quality of play is of concern to some voters.


My response was supposed to be more tounge-in-cheek than anything due to its lack of explanation (should have placed a smiley next to it :-).

I know you have respect for that era since you had Pearce on your last ballot (and moved him up a few more slots on your prelim today).
   69. Dolf Lucky Posted: June 24, 2004 at 03:38 PM (#695990)
Has anyone actually *seen* 1860's baseball? Every summer, there's a vintage baseball tournament right up the street from where I work, consisting of one tourney played by 1860's rules, and one played by 1880's rules (I forget the exact years). The difference between the 1860s game and the 1880s game is greater than the difference between the 1880s game and what I saw at Shea Stadium last night.

I'm not submitting this post as a QED--thou shalt not vote for old timers, but I've gotta say that it's hard to shake the image of 1860s ball when the Pearces of the world get discussed. Was it baseball? Sure. Was it comparable to what we know, or even what one generation later knew? I really don't think so.
   70. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 24, 2004 at 03:57 PM (#696037)
Was it baseball? Sure. Was it comparable to what we know, or even what one generation later knew? I really don't think so.

Actually, I know so. It isn't the same. However, my point all along has been who cares ? Saying one era's play is "true" baseball and another's isn't is 100% subjective and 0% objective. My affection for eighties-style baseball doesn't mean that it was intrinsically better than any other style of ball. It only means that I liked it better. I can't prove to you that it was better than baseball during the fifties or the Deadball Era or even during the 1860s, but only that I derived much pleasure from viewing the games back then.

But even though I liked eighties-style baseball better, I still try to respect all other eras because personal opinions on style or different rules shouldn't count in this project, IMO.
   71. DavidFoss Posted: June 24, 2004 at 04:10 PM (#696059)
The difference between the 1860s game and the 1880s game is greater than the difference between the 1880s game and what I saw at Shea Stadium last night.

There certainly was a *LOT* more scoring.

1871 10.47
1872 9.26
1873 8.99
1874 7.48
1875 6.14
1876 5.90
1877 5.67
1878 5.17
1879 5.31
1880 4.69
1881 5.10
1882 5.41
1883 5.78
... etc...

I have to wait until I get home to post, but the 1860's scoring was even higher. Rockford's upset of the Nationals was 29-23. Very common for teams to average between 20 and 50 R/G. I think that's why the early boxes kept track of outs... because getting out was a much greater disappointment. All sorts of essays about rules and styles of play in the couple of books that I have.

Those vintage games look like they'd be fun to watch.
   72. Jeff M Posted: June 24, 2004 at 04:20 PM (#696090)
Those vintage games look like they'd be fun to watch.

Unfortunately, I don't think there are any vintage leagues down south, but I'd love to see one. If anyone hears about a southern league, please let me know.
   73. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 24, 2004 at 04:24 PM (#696101)
Unfortunately, I don't think there are any vintage leagues down south, but I'd love to see one. If anyone hears about a southern league, please let me know.

Same here. I don't know of any in Raleigh. I did see one on Long Island years ago when I still lived there. That was a lot of fun.
   74. OCF Posted: June 24, 2004 at 04:24 PM (#696105)
I found some time to look over positives for various players (in contrast to my post of negatives). I'm glad to see some people react to what I saw as negatives.

Kelly, I consider your post #11 to be an interesting sort of public service. There's a pithy negative one-liner in there about nearly everyone, so anyone wanting to make a positive comment can, as a rhetorical device, quote your negative comment as a place to start from. I tried that with what I said about Evers in #38, and the same device would work for other posters defending other candidates.
   75. Paul Wendt Posted: June 24, 2004 at 08:32 PM (#696805)
1890-1892 now stands out for the annual number of HOMers who were regular or "semi-regular" MLB players.
PhillyBooster #43:
1888: 21 (18/2/1)
1889: 22 (18/3/1)
1890: 27 (12/14/1)
1891: 24 (20/3/1)
1892: 26 (25/0/1)
1893: 21 (20/0/1)
1894: 21 (19/0/2)

Partly in explanation, karlmagnus #48 referred to baseball recession in 1892-1900 and general economic recession in 1893-1896. PhillyBooster #51 referred instead to new rules in 1893, especially the new pitching distance.

Major league expansion in 1890 certainly provided regular jobs for some veterans on the way out and for some youngsters on the way in, probably including some HOMers. Paul Hines and George Davis may be examples of each.

Granting that point for young Davis in 1890 (age 19), it is reasonable to ask whether he would have been a regular MLB player in 1891 or 1892 without the unusual 1890 opportunity. Later in the decade, Lajoie and Wagner were first regular players (on the full-season definition) at ages 22 and 24. Their batting records suggest that they were ready to play regularly before their debuts at ages 21 and 23.

Hines and Davis are only examples here.

Variation in the definition of (semi)regular play should be part of any systematic study.
   76. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 24, 2004 at 08:36 PM (#696814)
Glad to see that you're back, Paul!
   77. Howie Menckel Posted: June 24, 2004 at 08:45 PM (#696830)
I have it this way.
The number is of any HOMer who had at least 10 games. The number of HOMers with fewer than 10 games is listed, if any, in parentheses (Clarke and Walsh had several of these, btw).
The asterisks indicate how many players were in more than 10 G, but fewer than half. A 23*** means that 23 players had at least 10 G, but only 20 of them played in at least half. Negro Leaguers are listed as well, for full- and part-time work as best as I could figure it from colleague contributions.
Bottom line: This shows the same 1890-92 spike, and at this point seems like we'll have only a limited additional number of HOMers with 19th-century contributions.

HOMers by year (10 G min)
1871 - 8
1872 - 10
1873 - 10
1874 - 10
1875 - 10 (1)
1877 - 10*
1878 - 11 (1)
1879 - 16
1880 - 17** (3)
1881 - 20 (1)
1882 - 21 (1)
1883 - 20
1884 - 21
1885 - 22
1886 - 22*
1887 - 21*
1888 - 23****
1889 - 23**
1890 - 27
1891 - 28****
1892 - 27*****
1893 - 24****
1894 - 21*
1895 - 20**
1896 - 19*
1897 - 19** (1)
1898 - 18
1899 - 19*
1900 - 18 (1)
1901 - 21 (1)
1902 - 19
1903 - 19* (1)
1904 - 21** (2)
1905 - 21**
1906 - 19* (1)
1907 - 18
1908 - 17* (3)
1909 - 16*** (1)
1910 - 16*** (1)
1911 - 14* (1)
1912 - 12*
1913 - 12* (1)
1914 - 11 (2)
1915 - 10 (2)
1916 - 11** (1)
1917 - 8*** (1)
1918 - 5*
1919 - 5*
1920 - 3
1921 - 3
1922 - 2**
1923 - 1*
1924 - 1*
1925 - 0 (1)
   78. Howie Menckel Posted: June 24, 2004 at 08:46 PM (#696832)
Damn, sorry if that looks awfully long..
   79. PhillyBooster Posted: June 24, 2004 at 08:48 PM (#696844)
Hines and Davis are only examples here.

See, also, Cy Young (rookie in 1890), Jesse Burkett (rookie in 1890), Kid Nichols (rookie in 1890), and Deacon White (last gasp 42 year old veteran in 1890).

So that's 6 HoMers who potentially wouldn't have been in the league absent the 3 league structure.
   80. karlmagnus Posted: June 24, 2004 at 09:38 PM (#696913)
Before we get carried away with the excesses of 1890, let me repeat; we will be electing 3 HOMers per year from 1960. If the average HOMer career is 15 years, that means an average of 45 HOmers in the league for each post-1960 year with full representation. Even if HOMer careers average 12 years, it's 36. 1890/91/92 are not anomalous; the anomaly when we've finished will be the lean years of 1895-1904 (after 1905 some yet-to-appear players like Cobb, Speaker and Johnson have not been counted.)
   81. karlmagnus Posted: June 24, 2004 at 09:55 PM (#696932)
If as seems likely we elect numbers 3-9 from the current backlog, we will add 2 to the 1860s/70s, 1 to 1884-87, 2 to 1888-1896 (Caruthers retires the year before Wallace starts) 3 to 1897-1907, 2 to 1908-1913 and 1 to 1914-1918. That will reduce the peak a bit -- as I say, we have some newbies arriving who will fill up post 1905.
   82. Michael Bass Posted: June 25, 2004 at 12:50 AM (#697249)
Well, more reading on the Negro Leaguers and I've changed my mind again. :)

I think I probably jumped the gun some on Monroe, everything I'm reading about him doesn't have him as high as I ranked him in my prelim rankings. I think I had him about right before, right behind Cupid Childs.

On the other hand, I like Poles a little more with what I'm reading. Still not Pete Hill, especially in terms of productive career length, but pretty damn solid with a very nice peak. He moves up a touch.

I'm still right where I was before on Foster. Evidence of his greatness is all over the place. The only mark against him is that his peak was relatively short, but it wasn't that short, essentially as long as the productive careers of all the other serious pitchers on this ballot, and from what I can tell it was probably a pure pitching peak no one else on this ballot can even touch.


1. Wallace
2. Caruthers
3. Van Haltren
4. Sheckard
5. Ryan
6. Thomson
7. Foster
8. Griffith
9. F. Jones
10. Poles
11. Childs
12. Monroe
13. Pearce
14. Leach
15. Beckley
   83. Kelly in SD Posted: June 25, 2004 at 06:35 AM (#697793)
I was wondering if the various Friends of Bobby Wallace could help me out. I was hoping you could explain to me his rankings in your various systems. I don't want to come off as a jerk, so if my tone bugs you, I apologize.
I ask because in my top 20, his placement is the biggest discrepancy with the most recent voting - voters 3rd, me 17th.

I am trying to understand the disparity. Having read the posts for the last several ballots/ballot discussions, most Wallace voters comments say something along the lines of "long career, great career, lots of WS, good fielder, lots of defensive value, best SS available, etc." I was hoping one of FoBW could show me more specifically what they see that I don't see.
Again, I'm not picking on or criticizing a vote, I want to better understand voters' reasoning.

Thank you to any who respond.

What I see are his positives and negatives are as follows:
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." Next, he matches to Dahlen with 826 and McPhee at 819 which is "somewhat similar."

Balancing the above factors, I do not have him on my ballot.
Thank you in advance to any who respond.
   84. Philip Posted: June 25, 2004 at 12:28 PM (#697859)
1929 ballot:

(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
   85. robc Posted: June 25, 2004 at 01:06 PM (#697868)

Bobby Wallace can be explained easily, at least on my ballot. My baseline number is career Warp3 + Peak Warp3 (best 5 seasons - not necessarily consecutive). Wallace due to his high career value, comes out #1. I have a bunch of other adjustment factors, and for Wallace these are almost all negative. But, due to the weakness of the current eligibles, he holds on to the top spot.

I havent argued hard for Wallace. I was a big FO Hardy Richardson and Bid McPhee, and both were (relative to the other options) stronger candidates than Wallace.
   86. Dag Nabbit: secretary of the World Banana Forum Posted: June 25, 2004 at 02:12 PM (#697925)

Looking at Wallace . . . let's start with defense. His defensive value is somewhat hidden because he was first a third baseman before becoming a SS. And he was no ordinary 3Ber, but in fact ended up with the best WS/1000 innings of any of the 290 third basemen listed on pages 612-4 of Win Shares. In 3661 innings, he picked up more fielding WS than anyone who played less than 4790 innings. So he was an outstanding defender there & based on what I've been told by those who have single season info, was outstanding his first few seasons at short as well. Combine FWS at third & SS & you've got 112.2 FWS & he's in the top 12-15 players in baseball history in FWS. So he had both great defensive peak value & great defensive career value.

Offensively, I went through & compared his OPS+ to the OPS+s of all starting shortstops in baseball the years he was a starter. His offensive value at short was similar to the offensive value of Jake Beckley at first - rarely the #1 guy (I think he had the best OPS+ exactly once of any starting SS) but usually a best-of-the-rest guy. Behind George Davis, Honus Wagner & maybe one-or-two other guys. Those that compare him to Alan Trammell are making a good comparison IMHO, though Trammell's career OPS+ was a little higher.

Never a great peak hitter, but because he lasted forever he ended up with very good career hitting value, with great peak & career fielding value.

And also you can toss in 400 IP at an ERA+ of 125. It ain't much, but it is there & should be noted.
   87. Howie Menckel Posted: June 25, 2004 at 03:40 PM (#698035)
Geesh, I'd forgotten Wallace's pitching. Two nice seasons, 1895-96, pitching with Cleveland in a one-team league. Had almost the same ERA as Cy Young with the same team in 1896 (with only one-third the IP however).
Doesn't automatically move Wallace up on my ballot, but it does make me more comfortable with him up fairly high. It's about 1.5 additional years of significant value, in a way.
   88. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 25, 2004 at 04:10 PM (#698079)
Wallace's pitching makes up about 5% of his value. It's "extra credit," nothing more.
   89. Kelly in SD Posted: June 25, 2004 at 06:33 PM (#698370)
Thank you to the FoBW who have responded to my query so far. The posts will be added to my consideration. Keep 'em coming.
   90. Jim Sp Posted: June 25, 2004 at 06:46 PM (#698395)
Wallace's pitching makes up about 5% of his value. It's "extra credit," nothing more.

...but probably the difference between elected and not elected this year.
   91. DavidFoss Posted: June 25, 2004 at 07:28 PM (#698507)
Wallace's pitching makes up about 5% of his value. It's "extra credit," nothing more.

...but probably the difference between elected and not elected this year.

Plus, its real extra credit, too. As in he actually did pitch in major league baseball. Not the type of "extra credit" we were talking about in the other thread.
   92. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 25, 2004 at 07:48 PM (#698553)
Plus, its real extra credit, too. As in he actually did pitch in major league baseball. Not the type of "extra credit" we were talking about in the other thread.

I didn't mean it as a slight to Wallace. I was only trying to place his pitching within the context of his era and career. WS overrates his contributions somewhat so my comments were directed toward that system.

...but probably the difference between elected and not elected this year.

   93. karlmagnus Posted: June 25, 2004 at 08:36 PM (#698664)
His pitching will this year be the difference between just on and just off my ballot; I prefer him to Sheckard, as he was at least a little closer to unique
   94. robc Posted: June 25, 2004 at 09:49 PM (#698907)
My top 30, divided into groups. The - separates groups into players with noticably different value s. I only have 13 players distinguishable from the giant blob. It has been a while since Tiernan made my ballot.

1. Wallace
2. Thompson
3. Sheckard
4. VanHaltren
-big dropoff-
Above are solid HoMers (there are no no-brainers this year).
Below are guys I think should get in, but if they dont, thats okay too.
5. Ryan
6. Cross
7. Childs
8. Beckley
9. Jennings
10. Caruthers
==End of HoMers
11. Long
12. Jones, F
13. Williams
-Below here is a near indistinguishable mass of good but not great players.
14. Nash
15. Tiernan
16. Griffith
17. McCormick
18. Waddell
19. Pearce
20. Konetchy
21. Bresnahan
22. Pike
23. McGraw
24 Poles
25. Mullane
26 Foster
27. Leach
28. Willis
29. Selbach
30. Evers
   95. Rick A. Posted: June 25, 2004 at 10:56 PM (#699056)
Prelim ballot

Some changes on the ballot. Forgot about Van Haltren's pitching (duh) so he moves up some. Foster, Griffith and Leach also move up a few slots.

1. Pearce
2. Wallace
3. C. Jones
4. Pike
5. Browning
6. Foster
7. Williamson
8. Caruthers
9. Sheckard
10. Childs
11. Jennings
12. Monroe
13. Duffy
14. Thompson
15. Van Haltren

Next 15
16. Leach
17. Willis
18. Tiernan
19. Welch
20. Griffith
21. Waddell
22. Doyle
23. Griffin
24. McGraw
25. Chance
26. Long
27. Dunlap
28. Beckley
29. Mullane
30. Ryan
   96. Jeff M Posted: June 25, 2004 at 10:56 PM (#699058)
RobC, hard to imagine two ballots more different than yours and mine. Ten of your ballot entries are absent from mine, and three others are 13, 14 and 15 on mine.

   97. Kelly in SD Posted: June 26, 2004 at 08:28 AM (#699492)
I don't know if people want this info, but I thought I would post it so I don't have to look it up. Defensive Win Shares/1000 innings (min 10000 innings at pos or prominent player) at various positions. WS and innings totals only from 1876 forward.

years name inning ws ws/1000
88-07 Beckley 20802 37.9 1.82
07-21 Konetch 18463 38.8 2.10
71-97 CaAnson 18082 31.9 1.76
10-24 Daubert 17855 34.0 1.90 (His career is almost over)
05-19 HaChase 15971 24.6 1.54
80-97 RConner 15527 34.1 2.20
87-99 TTucker 14586 24.3 1.66
95-17 HaDavis 14425 27.4 1.90
79-96 DBrouth 14373 24.9 1.73
07-20 FMerkle 13598 24.7 1.81
82-94 Comisky 11973 24.2 2.02
95-08 DMcGann 11941 22.8 1.91
09-20 Luderus 11822 20.7 1.75
98-11 Bransfd 11462 18.8 1.64
08-18 Hobltzl 11207 17.5 1.56
93-05 LaChanc 10306 21.4 2.08
10-19 CGandil 10182 20.0 1.96
98-14 FrChance 8655 15.4 1.78

82-99 McPhee 18789 98.7 5.25
96-16 Lajoie 18263 85.7 4.69
02-17 JEvers 15061 68.6 4.55
07-20 LDoyle 14978 50.3 3.35
88-07 Gleasn 13862 47.7 3.44
82-97 Pfeffr 13585 64.1 4.72
12-23 Cutshw 13354 55.7 4.17
97-09 Ritchy 13092 55.8 4.26
88-01 Childs 12742 57.0 4.48
90-07 BLowe. 11694 53.1 4.54

95-08 Collins 15017 89.0 5.93
87-07 LCross. 14977 90.4 6.03
08-24 Gardner 14500 72.4 5.00
80-96 ALatham 13915 73.5 5.28
08-22 HRBaker 13877 65.3 4.71
84-98 BilNash 12862 70.9 5.51
09-22 JAustin 12552 49.7 3.96
98-11 Stenfdt 12281 54.9 4.47
99-15 Bradley 12185 61.4 5.04
12-24 HeiGroh 11326 59.9 5.29
86-98 Shindle 11119 58.9 5.30
04-13 ADevlin 10523 59.7 5.67
10-23 EFoster 10336 47.9 4.64
98-18 ToLeach 08502 48.9 5.76
71-90 DeWhite 07243 25.5 3.53 (played 3rd btn ages 34-42)
91-03 JMcGraw 06530 32.8 5.02
78-90 Wllmson 06342 34.8 5.49
71-88 ESutton 05959 29.0 4.87

91-09 BDahlen 18754 128.0 6.82
90-07 Corcorn 18274 114.6 6.27
97-17 HWagner 16971 116.9 6.89
08-23 DonBush 16637 076.6 4.60
94-18 Wallace 16046 087.5 5.46
89-03 HrmLong 15916 101.9 6.40
02-16 JTinker 15406 112.2 7.28
92-07 MoCross 14634 066.0 4.51
05-18 MDoolan 14468 099.2 6.86
01-20 McBride 14378 087.8 6.11
79-95 Glassck 14288 086.0 6.02
87-99 EMcKean 13569 044.5 3.28
09-22 Fletchr 12694 089.4 7.04
90-09 GeDavis 12058 064.7 5.36
91-02 Jenning 07845 060.2 7.68
78-94 MonWard 07253 048.9 6.74 (SS btn 85-91)
   98. Kelly in SD Posted: June 26, 2004 at 08:36 AM (#699493)
A few comments:
1. Everything lined up in the text box.
2. Hughie Jennings, DAMN
3. Hal Chase must have looked pretty in the field for all those contemporay players to rank him so highly, because WS says he is the worst fielding 1stB in the history of baseball (up to 1922) who has played more than 10000 innings.
4. Compare the Cub fielders to their contemporaries. Tinker - WOW. Did a lefthander hitter never play against the Cubs? Or were no fly balls ever hit?
4.5 Steinfeldt and Evers show up well also.

I might get to the OF this weekend. If someone else wants to break it down by position, it would be great because I am going to list just outfielders with a note about where they played the most. I am using the WS book which doesn't break the three fields down, and my 1969 MacMillan for career length. The book is really good for dealing with this period because there are so many fewer players to go through.

   99. Kelly in SD Posted: June 26, 2004 at 08:51 AM (#699495)
Chris J. (and everybody else)

I noticed that Wallace has the highest rate of WS of any player at 3rd ever (among those listed in the WS book). 6.73/1000in.
There are only 3 other players over 6.00 WS/1000:

Lave Cross 6.03 WS/1000 in 14977 innings
Lee Tannehill 6.58 WS/1000 in 5980 innings
Bobby Wallace 6.73 WS/1000 in 3661 innings
Billy Clingman 6.59 WS/1000 in 3636 innings
Honorable Mention:
Jimmy Collins 5.93 WS/1000 in 15017 innings

There are only 4 other players with over 3000 innings at 3rd who average more than 5.50 WS.

How amazing are Cross and Collins to do that for 15k innings?!!?
   100. Brad Harris Posted: June 26, 2004 at 01:11 PM (#699507)
Wish I'd had more time to reconsider these guys this month. This is the best I can do right now. (Never seems to be enough time for baseball.) ;)

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.
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