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— A Look at Baseball's All-Time Best

Monday, January 10, 2005

1943 Ballot Discussion

A little better crop this time than what we had in ‘42, don’t you think? :-) Oscar Charleston and Mickey Cochrane are my picks to join the HOM this “year,” though Frankie Frisch and Bill Foster should have sizeable support.  Judy Johnson and Dick Lundy are a couple of quality Negro Leaguers that we need to take a good look at.

Jesse Haines and Chick Hafey? Two more of “Frankie’s Boys” that we can ignore. Cool!

1943 (January 16)—elect 2
WS W3 Rookie Name-Pos (Died)

366 114.2 1919 Frankie Frisch-2B (1973)
275 88.3 1925 Mickey Cochrane-C (1962)
258 64.9 1922 Jim Bottomley-1B (1959)
232 68.3 1926 Babe Herman-RF (1987)
207 48.4 1920 Jesse Haines-P (1978)
186 52.9 1925 Chick Hafey-LF (1973)
173 43.3 1923 Rube Walberg-P (1978)
145 45.8 1923 Bob Smith-P/SS (1987)
134 38.3 1928 Pat Malone-P (1943)
135 37.0 1926 Tommy Thomas-P (1988)
124 38.4 1923 Jimmie Wilson-C (1947)
126 31.5 1927 Fred Schulte-CF (1983)
122 31.9 1929 Roy Johnson-LF/RF (1973)
111 35.7 1927 Shanty Hogan-C (1967)
103 31.4 1925 Lloyd Brown-P (1974)
094 34.1 1928 Ben Cantwell-P (1962)
094 25.5 1928 Vic Sorrell-P (1972)

1943 (January 16)—elect 2
HF% Career Name-pos (born) BJ – MVP - All-Star

HF 15-41 Oscar Charleston-CF/1B (1896) #1 cf - 9.5 - 13
HF 23-37 Bill Foster-P 6 - 5
HF 21-37 Judy Johnson-3B (1900)#2 3b 0 - 5*
96% 16-37 Dick Lundy-SS (1898) #3 ss - 2 - 7*
36% 22-37 Rap Dixon-RF (1902) #9 rf - 0 - 4*
16% 20-40 Fats Jenkins-OF (1898)#8 cf - 1 - 4*
00% 23-37 William Bell-P (??) 1 - 1*
00% 21-37 Paul Stephens-SS (1900) #8 ss - 0 - 0*
00% 25-37 Eddie Dwight-CF (1925-37) #10 cf - 0 - 1*

Players Passing Away in 1942
HoMers
Age Elected

71 1904 Amos Rusie-P
51 1932 Louis Santop-C

Candidates
Age Eligible

82 1899 Henry Larkin-1B
58 1924 Bob Bescher-LF
54 1926 Bill Rariden-C

Props to Dan and Chris for supplying the lists!

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 10, 2005 at 11:35 PM | 146 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 11, 2005 at 02:04 AM (#1071031)
hot topics
   2. EricC Posted: January 11, 2005 at 02:31 AM (#1071097)
Mickey Cochrane. Most similar players: Gabby Hartnett, Buck Ewing. Yes.

Frankie Frisch. Most similar players: Bill Dahlen, George Davis. Yes.

Jim Bottomley. Most similar players: Harry Davis, Jake Daubert. No.

Babe Herman. Most similar players: Pete Browning, Roy Thomas. No.

Oscar Charleston. Yes.

Bill Foster. Maybe.

Judy Johnson. Maybe.

Dick Lundy. Maybe.
   3. DavidFoss Posted: January 11, 2005 at 03:27 AM (#1071203)
Chick Hafey in Baseballlibrary.com :

It is difficult to assess how great Hafey might have been if not for his ill health, poor eyesight, and constant salary disputes. Hafey had a chronic sinus condition that required several operations and affected his vision. After beanings in 1926, a doctor advised him to wear glasses, and since his eyesight would vary from day to day, he used three different pairs. He became one of the first bespectacled outfielders.

Three different pairs of glasses? You can't make this stuff up.
   4. Brent Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:19 AM (#1071340)
Chick Hafey is one of the worst players ever to have been the best player on a pennant winning team - the 1931 Cardinals. Hafey had 25 win shares -- the next best were Frisch and Hallahan with 21 each. Somehow they still managed to win 101 games and the World Series.
   5. robc Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:19 AM (#1071341)
Very prelim ballot. Still working on the Negro Leaguers with the exception of the #1 spot on the ballot.

1. Oscar Charleston
----
2. Frankie Frisch
---
3. Mickey Cochrane
--
4. Joe Sewell
5. Lave Cross
6. Jake Beckley
7. Eppa Rixey
8. Rabbit Maranville
9. Harry Hooper
10. Dick Lundy
11. Jimmy Ryan
12. Bobby Veach
-
13. Pete Browning
-
14. George Van Haltren
15. Del Pratt

16. Pie Traynor
17. Rube Waddell
18. Ben Taylor
19. Ed Konetchy
20. Clark Griffith
21. Cupid Childs
22. Sam Rice
23. George J. Burns
24. Fielder Jones
25. Wally Schang
26. John Beckwith
27. George Sisler
28. Tommy Leach
29. Hughie Jennings
30. Dave Bancroft
   6. DavidFoss Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:41 AM (#1071395)
Chick Hafey is one of the worst players ever to have been the best player on a pennant winning team - the 1931 Cardinals. Hafey had 25 win shares -- the next best were Frisch and Hallahan with 21 each. Somehow they still managed to win 101 games and the World Series.

This is almost a compliment to the manager/GM. Balance & Depth. The 1949 Yankees had a top WS total of 24 and it made people say that Stengel was a genius. The mighty 1998 Yankees were topped by three guys with 27 WS in a longer season.

None of the Cardinals were particularly durable in 1931 and they had a balanced five and half man rotation. They were good enough to be a close second in both RS & RA that year and win the pennant by 13 games. Once in the Series, they just had to kick back and Pepper Martin take over. :-)
   7. Michael Bass Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:44 AM (#1071401)
Just the new white players for now...Charleston will, barring a compelte shocking disclosure, be #1 on my ballot. I also expect Foster to be really high. Lundy, no clue. Johnson, I doubt it.

Frisch is the top player pre-NLers. Long consistent career with good peak seasons. Cochrane will slot right after him, currently second, but soon to be 3rd or 4th. Best catcher we've had since I've been voting, and I include Santop in that.

Herman and Bottomley are nice enough players. They both rank between 70 and 90.

Haines and Hafey are two of the 5 worst players in my consideration set.
   8. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:53 AM (#1071419)
This is the way I look at it between Cochrane and Frisch: Cochrane is, without a doubt, much higher on the all-time catcher list than Frisch is for the second basemen. Therefore, I can't see Frisch over Cochrane.
   9. Chris Cobb Posted: January 11, 2005 at 05:20 AM (#1071462)
Quick takes on the new candidates

Oscar Charleston: Obvious #1.

Mickey Cochrane: Best full-career major-league catcher we have yet seen. I have Santop very slightly ahead, but it could go either way. Probable #2. Better peak and better rate stats than Frisch.

Frankie Frisch: Obvious HoMer, though not an all-time great in the Collins/Hornsby/Lajoie mold. Probable #3

Bill Foster: Almost certainly the #3 NeL pitcher all-time after Satchel Paige and Joe Williams, though he's a fairly distant third, since he didn't have the mammoth careers of Satch and Smokey Joe. His is a career more on the Coveleski/Vance/Walsh scale: tremendous, and extended, peak, but not a whole lot outside of it. I plan to rank him at least as high as I had Dazzy Vance (I had Vance at #4). It's possible he should rank ahead of Frisch and Cochrane, but I'm not sure about that yet.

Dick Lundy: In the glut. I have win share estimates for him nearly done, and he looks like a player on the scale of Joe Sewell and Dave Bancroft. Pretty definitely better than Bancroft and probably a bit better than Joe Sewell. He compares to Sewell like this, as I see it. Better defensively, a bit more power, less good as a hitter for average and definitely behind on plate discipline (Gary A's data confirms that he didn't walk very much), productive career perhaps two seasons longer. Peak voters may prefer Sewell slightly to Lundy, career voters the reverse.

It's odd making Lundy's case because when I say he's a little better than Joe Sewell, that means _I'm_ not that impressed with Lundy. I have Sewell ranked in the 20's, which means Lundy will probably also miss my ballot or, if he makes it, it will be near the bottom. But most people have Sewell ranked much higher than I do, so if you have Sewell on your ballot, Lundy should be in the vicinity.

Myself, I think John Beckwith is the next 1920s infielder to elect after Frisch goes in.

Judy Johnson: Didn't hit enough to be a great major league player. Below Pie Traynor in the 3rd base rankings for sure.

Jim Bottomley: A very good player, but not a HoMer.
   10. robc Posted: January 11, 2005 at 05:58 AM (#1071508)
John,

While your point is legit, the problem is that when I compare Cochrane to Frisch, Frankie is so far ahead that the little boost I would give Mickey for being higher on the C list than Frisch is on the 2B list isnt enough.

Of course, they are both HoMers. Its just which gets to go in with Oscar this year.
   11. Ardo Posted: January 11, 2005 at 06:14 AM (#1071538)
My prelim ballot for 1943 (1942 ranking):

1. The OC (new)
2. Cochrane (new)
3. Frisch (new)
4. Sisler (1)
----- Vance was (2), Terry was (3) -----
5. Beckwith (4)
6. B. Foster (new)
7. Roush (6)
8. Griffith (7)
9. Leach (5)
10. Duffy (off) - like Roush, he distinguishes himself from the OF glut by virtue of his outstanding CF defense. More and more, I think the HoF chose the correct ones.
11. Sewell (9)
12. Lundy (new)
13. Williamson (10)
14. Beckley (11)
15. Redding (8) - less merit than the 4 NeLers ranked above him.

Ballot-worthy: Van Haltren (13), C. Jones, Ryan (12) among OFs, Maranville, Traynor, Moore (14), B. Taylor among IFs, Bresnahan among Cs, Waddell (15), Welch, Grimes, Joss among Ps.
   12. Kelly in SD Posted: January 11, 2005 at 10:40 AM (#1071993)
####### site ate my ####### post. not even 2000 characters. ####. there were explanations, not anymore.

1. charleston




2. cochrane

3/4. welch
3/4. foster

5. c. jones
6. browning

7. duffy
8. van haltren

9. frisch. maybe 7th. pluses: consistent all-star level with 4 30+ yrs. A+ fielder. minuses: peak is nothing special even for middle infielder. general caution on newbies who are not under consideration as best at their position ever.
no disgrace this position. if anyone is on my ballot i would be happy to see them in the hall.

10. mendez
11. burns
12. poles
13. roush

14. childs
15. jennings

also possible: lundy, beckwith, moore, redding, w cooper, leach, vance, willis.

other newbies:
herman: 40th among position players, 55th including pitchers.
bottomley: 44th and 60th
hafey: 62nd (out of 70) and 88th (out of 100)
haines: 28th (out of 30) and 98th.
   13. Rusty Priske Posted: January 11, 2005 at 02:54 PM (#1072064)
From a dearth of worthy candidates to an excess.

Neither of the two elected last year were on my ballot, not are they likely to make my PHoM. This year, my top two ballot spots are also my PHoM inductees (barring unforseen changes.)

1. Oscar Charleston (new)

2. Frankie Frisch (new)

3. Jake Beckley (4,4,2)

4. George Van Haltren (2,7,6)

5. Bill Foster (new)

6. Eppa Rixey (1,5,4)

7. Tommy Leach (3,6,7)

8. Mickey Welch (5,3,1)

9. Edd Roush (7,10,9)

10. George Sisler (6,8,8)

11. Sam Rice (9,9,3)

12. Hugh Duffy (8,11,12)

13. Jimmy Ryan (10,14,14)

14. Dick Lundy (new)

15. Harry Hooper (14,13,11)

The next four were forced off from last year by the newcomers.

16-20. Moore, Sewell, Monroe, Childs, Doyle
21-25. Powell, Griffith, Grimes, McCormick, Poles
26-30. Mullane, Streeter, Willis, White, Burns
   14. PhillyBooster Posted: January 11, 2005 at 03:37 PM (#1072115)
Rusty,

The fourth best white catcher of all time doesn't make your ballot?
   15. Chris Cobb Posted: January 11, 2005 at 03:39 PM (#1072119)
Rusty,

Cochrane doesn't make your top 30?? How do you make a case that Cupid Childs and Larry Doyle were better than he was?
   16. karlmagnus Posted: January 11, 2005 at 03:44 PM (#1072124)
Cochrane only goes above Childs on my ballot because of the catcher dearth -- it's a VERY short career, even corrected for season length by multiplying by 130/#games played. Lombardi, for example, looks significantly better in a few years time.
   17. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:03 PM (#1072160)
Cochrane only goes above Childs on my ballot because of the catcher dearth -- it's a VERY short career, even corrected for season length by multiplying by 130/#games played. Lombardi, for example, looks significantly better in a few years time.

Cochrane was much better than Lombardi. Bocci is also behind Hartnett, Dickey and Gibson.

Cochrane doesn't make your top 30?? How do you make a case that Cupid Childs and Larry Doyle were better than he was?

It has to be an oversight on Rusty's part.
   18. Mike Webber Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:11 PM (#1072182)
A Few Random Notes:

I used to work with Glenn Wright's son, and he told me one time shortly before his father's death he asked him who would start for his all-time team, of the player he played against. For the most part they were who you would guess, Ruth, Hornsby, and so forth. But he had Chick Hafey in left field. Glenn's son didn't even know who Chick was.

Eddie Dwight retired in Kansas City, Kansas, my home town. He is/was probably better known as the father of Edward Dwight Jr, the first African-American trained to be an astronaut, though I don't think he ever actually went into space.
Eddie Dwight Jr. - Astronaut

Fats Jenkins as the Gadfly AKA Ted Knorr will tell you is in the basketball hall of fame. A member of the New York Rens.

New York Rens - Basketball HOF
   19. sunnyday2 Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:48 PM (#1072269)
Prelim.

1. Charleston (new, PHoM* 1943) is an easy choice.
2. Cochrane (new, PHoM* 1943) by a neck.
3. Frisch (new) is Tier 1.5, not inner circle.
4. Bill Foster (new) could drop, research needed.
5. Jennings*

6. Sisler*
7. Lundy--best career SS of his era.
8. Waddell*
9. Dobie Moore*--best peak SS of his era.
10. Williamson*

11. Traynor--formerly overrated.
12. Beckwith
13. Sewell--we're building a glut of SSs.
14. Joss
15. Bond*

HM. C. Jones*, Childs*, Doyle, Roush, Cicotte, Bancroft, Rixey, Monroe, McCormick, Browning, Griffith.

Other newbies: Bottomley--underrated but no HoMer
J. Johnson--meet DeMoss, Marcelle, Malarcher
Babe Herman--Billy maybe, Babe no
Haines--possibly underrated but no HoMer
Fats Jenkins--better at buckets, not quite Spot Poles
   20. jhwinfrey Posted: January 11, 2005 at 04:57 PM (#1072293)
Here's my preliminary ballot:

1. Oscar Charleston--could he be unanimous?
2. Bill Foster--I give a slight bonus to pitchers, which bumps him ahead of Frisch--they're very close, though.
3. Frank Frisch--Check out those strikeout totals!

4. Jake Beckley
5. Mickey Welch
6. Mickey Cochrane--The Mickeys have to stick together! His career was too short, even for a catcher, for him to join the big 3 at the top of my ballot.
7. Judy Johnson--significantly better than Pie Traynor, in my opinion--Johnson had a longer career, was a better fielder, and I think they were about equal at the plate.
8. Eppa Rixey

9. Burleigh Grimes
10. Ben Taylor
11. Tommy Leach

12. Carl Mays
13. Dick Redding
14. Dick Lundy--could move up a little, but this looks good for now.
15. Jose Mendez--and that makes 7 negro leaguers on my ballot.

Other newcomers:
30. Rap Dixon--seems to have been a pretty good hitter. I have him just below Bill Monroe.
50. Jim Bottomley--a very good hitter, but he doesn't have much else going for him.
59. Fats Jenkins--Steady, dependable outfielder in the Sam Rice/George Van Haltren mold. Jenkins was probably the weakest hitter of the three, though.
85. Babe Herman--Like Bottomley, but with less career
98. Jesse Haines--Actually, I was surprised he ranked so high.

Chick Hafey, Rube Walberg, and the rest don't make my top 100.
   21. sunnyday2 Posted: January 11, 2005 at 05:09 PM (#1072319)
I haven't seen any evidence whatsoever that Judy Johnson was a better hitter than Pie Traynor. Of course, it is early and I am keeping my eyes open. Presumably there will be discussion of park effects on Johnson's hitting numbers. But I think it's true that the HoF choices of NeL IFers was almost wholly based on anecdote, and the commentary was provided by people who valued fielding more highly than hitting. Despite very widely dispursed park effects, I have yet to see evidence that NeL baseball was so different from MLB that offense didn't matter.
   22. Mike Webber Posted: January 11, 2005 at 05:14 PM (#1072329)
Chris Cobb Wrote:
Bill Foster: Almost certainly the #3 NeL pitcher all-time after Satchel Paige and Joe Williams, though he's a fairly distant third, since he didn't have the mammoth careers of Satch and Smokey Joe. His is a career more on the Coveleski/Vance/Walsh scale: tremendous, and extended, peak, but not a whole lot outside of it. I plan to rank him at least as high as I had Dazzy Vance (I had Vance at #4). It's possible he should rank ahead of Frisch and Cochrane, but I'm not sure about that yet.

I do not have a strong impression of Bill Foster. Is being the #3 pitcher in NeL history equivilant to being the third best centerfielder in Yankee history? I mean its pretty good, but is it good enough?

Is Foster generally considered to be a better pitcher than Redding?
   23. sunnyday2 Posted: January 11, 2005 at 05:31 PM (#1072385)
My understanding, without consulting my files or whatever, more off the top, my understanding is that Foster is clearly one of the top 5. Whether he goes in sooner or later (later being maybe as a backlogger in 1966), he is a clear HoMer to me. Of course, I'm one of these guys who thinks the HoF didn't quite finish its job with the NeLers, that they came up 5-6 players short, maybe even more, along with getting 3-5 of the wrong guys in the first place. put it another way, I think Foster is one of the top 15 NeLers (maybe even top 10) of them all and we will clearly elect 15 NeLers and more.
   24. Chris Cobb Posted: January 11, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1072388)
I do not have a strong impression of Bill Foster. Is being the #3 pitcher in NeL history equivilant to being the third best centerfielder in Yankee history? I mean its pretty good, but is it good enough?

Good questions, Mike Webber. I think that being the #3 pitcher in NeL history is good enough.

I described Foster this way rather than giving major-league comparisons because I am pretty sure of his placement in among Negro-League pitchers, but not entirely sure at present how that translates into major-league equivalents.

Dick Redding, who is the 4-8 range (candidates for 4th best pitcher include imo Rube Foster, Redding, Mendez, Rogan, Ray Brown, and Hilton Smith), was 9th on my ballot in 1942. If Rube Foster were still eligible I'd rank him higher than that, so I think a pitcher who is better than they were is in clear HoMer territory. I don't have MLEs yet for Bill Foster, though, which is why I haven't offered a firmer ranking.

Is Foster generally considered to be a better pitcher than Redding?

I'll go over the expert opinions given in _Cool Papas_ tonight, but for now I'll say that I believe that he Foster is generally considered to have been better than Redding.
   25. Rusty Priske Posted: January 11, 2005 at 06:54 PM (#1072602)
I just came back to see that, yes, I missed Cochrane on my spreadsheet. Total oversight. I'm not sure if he will make my ballot, but he is most definitely above 30.
   26. Rusty Priske Posted: January 11, 2005 at 07:01 PM (#1072620)
My rough slotting has him at #28, due to a short career. This may still be adjusted upwards (both this year and future years if he doesn't get in).

Regardless, there is no way he touches the elect-me spots, that is for certain. Oscar/Frankie get those.
   27. Ardo Posted: January 11, 2005 at 07:18 PM (#1072673)
A question about George Van Haltren and Jimmy Ryan: The more I look at them, the less impressed I am. I had them 6-7 in '41, 12-13 in '42, and plan to leave them off ballot this year.

Post #11 says, "More and more, I think the HoF chose the right ones", namely Roush and Duffy, who were both outstanding CF defenders.

Why is Van Haltren so far ahead of Ryan in the balloting? And for those who rank Van Haltren above Roush and Duffy, what factors do you consider?
   28. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 11, 2005 at 07:25 PM (#1072694)
My rough slotting has him at #28, due to a short career. This may still be adjusted upwards (both this year and future years if he doesn't get in).

Rusty, you're underrating him incredibly. How many catchers would you place before him as of 1943?
   29. Michael Bass Posted: January 11, 2005 at 07:29 PM (#1072705)
Re: the 4 CFs. None of them are on my ballot; Ryan would be the top, I think. But to call Duffy an outstanding CF defender, while accurate, needs qualifying, as only about 40% of his games were in CF.
   30. Paul Wendt Posted: January 11, 2005 at 08:08 PM (#1072803)
Ardo,
The Van Haltren and Ryan "fadeaway" in your recent personal ranking broadly matches that in the HOM election results and in the opinions of SABR 19th Century Cmte members. On the latter, and some expert opinions, see "A 1983 perspective on the Hall of Fame --and what happened to it."

19c Notes, 2003 Anniversary Issue, page 4

Paul Wendt, editor
(and author of that article)
   31. Paul Wendt Posted: January 11, 2005 at 08:10 PM (#1072811)
P.S.
I think there is more longterm HOM support for Van Haltren than for Ryan because of Van Haltren's record as a pitcher.
   32. PhillyBooster Posted: January 11, 2005 at 08:37 PM (#1072890)
The All More-Pennants-Added-Than-A-HoMer-Ballot

A Ballot of the 15 guys who have more Pennants Added than a HoMer at his position (Note: This is not my ballot. This is just a ranking of these 15 particular guys). One through six made my 1942 ballot. The other 9 are in my Top 40.

Rank: Name (HoMers at his position [era for pitchers] with fewer Pennants Added)

1. Jake Beckley (Start, Terry)
2. Eppa Rixey (Faber, Coveleski)
3. Roger Bresnahan (Bennett)
4. Clark Griffith (Walsh, McGinnity)
5. Pete Browning (Carey)
6. Tommy Leach (Collins, Groh)
7. George van Haltren (Pike, Carey)
8. Carl Mays (Faber, Covaleski)
9. Hugh Duffy (Pike, Carey)
10. Wilbur Cooper (Coveleksi)
11. Wally Schang (Bennett)
12. Edd Roush (Carey)
13. Jimmy Ryan (Carey)
14. Burleigh Grimes (Vance)
15. Jack Quinn (Coveleski)
   33. Kelly in SD Posted: January 11, 2005 at 08:46 PM (#1072924)
sorry about that. i thought cybernanny would scrub that word too. i'll go wash my keyboard out with soap.
   34. Kelly in SD Posted: January 11, 2005 at 09:13 PM (#1072995)
RE: Duffy and outfield positions.

Duffy was mainly a centerfielder from 1892-1895 with Boston. Leftfielder from 1896-1899. Rightfielder from 1888-1891.
He was above the league average in range factor for outfielders every year he played left field.

Centerfielders when he played left/right:
1888: Jimmy Ryan
1889: Jimmy Ryan (Van Haltren 15 games also)
1890: Jimmy Ryan (Duffy 17)
1891: Tom Brown (Duffy 2)
1896: Billy Hamilton (Duffy 6)
1897: Billy Hamilton
1898: Billy Hamilton (Duffy 39)
1899: Billy Hamilton (Frisbee and Stafford 30+ games each)

I don't think being kept out of centerfield by Jimmy Ryan at his peak or Billy Hamilton is a mark against him.

Left and Right when Duffy was a centerfielder:
1892: L: Bobby Lowe and Harry Stovey
R: Tommy McCarthy
1893: L: Tommy McCarthy and Cliff Carroll
R: Cliff Carroll and Tommy McCarthy
1894: L: Tommy McCarthy
R: Jimmy Bannon
1895: L: Tommy McCarthy
R: Jimmy Bannon

win shares gold gloves each year by teammates or Duffy:
1890: Ryan and Duffy have the 2 highest defensive win shares for outfielders in the PL. Cliff Carroll has the 3rd most in the NL.
1892: Duffy has 2nd most
1897: Hamilton has 2nd most
1898: Duffy has the most
1899: Duffy has the 2nd most
The right fielder for the Boston teams of the late 90s was Chick Stahl who would go on to win gold gloves in 1900 and 1901.

Was the Boston park in the late 1890s like Yankee Stadium from the 20s to 60s where you needed 2 centerfielders for left and center?
   35. Rusty Priske Posted: January 11, 2005 at 09:52 PM (#1073097)
I realize that I'm probably underranking Cochrane. I'm just not a big fan of a positional bonus and I am a career voter.

I'll keep working on it, and see if I can justify moving him up (Or, to be more accurate, I'll see how high I can justify moving him up.)
   36. KJOK Posted: January 11, 2005 at 10:59 PM (#1073315)
Cochrane is, without a doubt, much higher on the all-time catcher list than Frisch is for the second basemen. Therefore, I can't see Frisch over Cochrane.

Really? Who do you have so high as 2nd baseman?

I have roughly:
1. Collins
2. Hornsby
3. Lajoie
4. Morgan
5. Gehringer
6. Frisch
7. Barnes

and for catchers:
1. Piazza
2. Bench
3. Berra
4. Ewing
5. Dickey
6. Hartnett
7. Fisk
8. Carter
9. Cochrane
10. Campanella
   37. jimd Posted: January 12, 2005 at 12:00 AM (#1073484)
Philosophically, I consider Starting Pitcher to be a group of 3-5 positions (depending on era, once schedules get to 130+ games). So being the 3rd best pitcher is like being the best at a randomly selected everyday position, just as being ranked 9-12 at pitcher is like being 3rd at a randomly selected everyday position.

Now, the specifics can get in the way of the philosophical assessment. Is there evidence that pitcher in the NeL is a "weak" position, where there is not enough overall depth to support such an equivalency?
   38. kthejoker Posted: January 12, 2005 at 12:04 AM (#1073492)
Carter? 115+ lifetime OPS with a respectable peak in the early 80s versus Cochrane's 128 OPS+ with no bad years to speak of?

Cochrane - 6 times above a .900 OPS
Carter - 0 times (not counting his 1974 cup of coffee)

Cochrane - a .320 lifetime hitter with more gray ink than Carter. Carter led the league in RBIs once, so he gets a 4-0 edge in black ink. Cochrane is 20th all-time in OBP - Carter nowhere close.

Cochrane is considered by many peers to be the greatest catcher of all-time. I'll concede Berra, Bench, and Dickey (and you forgot Pudge Rodriguez), but Gary Carter? Sheesh.
   39. kthejoker Posted: January 12, 2005 at 12:08 AM (#1073504)
As for second basemen, if Carlton Fisk is better than Mickey Cochrane, then Bobby Alomar, Ryne Sandberg, Craig Biggio, and Jeff Kent should be seriously considered alongside Frankie Frisch, who is a great second baseman, but not necessarily head over heels in front of those candidates, either.
   40. Michael Bass Posted: January 12, 2005 at 12:35 AM (#1073560)
WARP1 (I realize these need to be adjusted for schedule, remember though 1981 which makes up for most of the year-to-year gap)

Career
Carter: 121.6
Cochrane: 88.1

Best 3
Carter: 33.2
Cochrane: 29.1

Best 5
Carter: 53.3
Cochrane: 45.9


In Win Shares (also needing a schedule adjustment)


Career
Carter: 337
Cochrane: 275

Best 3
Carter: 94
Cochrane: 89

Best 5
Carter: 151
Cochrane: 142


I agree it's not close...and it's not close in favor of Carter.
   41. kthejoker Posted: January 12, 2005 at 01:12 AM (#1073621)
Cochrane also had his career shortened by a broken skull - his peak WS are very close to Carter, and his career number could've easily put on 50 with 3 average years tacked on at the end.

Now Ernie Lombardi was probably a better catcher than Carter and Cochrane. Though you could add Rod Carew to the "better than Frisch" group. Also, Jackie Robinson would give him a run.

I'd put Frisch & Cochrane at about a tie, with maybe a slight lead to Frisch. In either case, it's hard to say that Frisch is #2 or #3 and not put Cochrane on your ballot, unless you totally disregard positional bonuses.
   42. Gary A Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:11 AM (#1073705)
According to John Holway:

Bill Foster, 1924-39: 146-66, .689
William Bell, 1923-36: 141-57, .712

Almost exact contemporaries and both played on very good teams. Bell's winning percentage is second among pitchers with more than 110 decisions.
   43. Jeff M Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:32 AM (#1073745)
Copied from the SABR-L list:

"The following players are not in the Hall of Fame. Some will get elected in after they retire. Others had somewhat short careers or did not play much past 35, so had no decline phase to their avreages. They are all the players not in the Hall of Fame who are both in the top 100 all-time in win shares per plate appearance and total player rating per plate appearance.

Alex Rodriguez
Barry Bonds
Barry Larkin
Bobby Grich
Charley Jones
Charlie Keller
Dave Orr
Dick Allen
Frank Thomas-cws
Fred Dunlap
Gary Sheffield
Gene Tenace
Jeff Bagwell
Joe Jackson
Ken Griffey Jr.
Manny Ramirez
Mark McGwire
Mike Piazza
Pete Browning
Rickey Henderson

Cyril Morong" [he is the author of the quoted statement, not a potential HoFer :) ]

There are four eligible players that are not elected to the HoM: Jones, Browning, Dunlap and Orr. All of the others, except Tenace and maybe Keller, are likely to be elected to the HoM one day.
   44. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:40 AM (#1073757)
Cochrane had a short career? I have him with 11 average or above seasons. Sure he only played 13 years, but a) he was a catcher, and b) it is not like his career was like Hughie Jennings. He seems to have been a valuable contributor in each of his first 13 seasons, and in many seasons he was much better than that.
   45. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:41 AM (#1073758)
That should read, "in each of his first 11 seasons". Eisch.
   46. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:48 AM (#1073766)
Cyril Morong" [he is the author of the quoted statement, not a potential HoFer :) ]

Doesn't he sound like he could have been a member of the St. Louis Browns during the twenties? :-)
   47. Chris Cobb Posted: January 12, 2005 at 03:49 AM (#1073817)
Mike Webber asked in post 22 above:

Is Foster generally considered to be a better pitcher than Redding?

I've looked through the all-time team selections in _Cool Papas_, which polls most of the leading NeL historians for their all-time teams to see if there is a clear answer to this question. The evidence is not as clear as I would wish, primarily because most of the historians pick left-handed pitchers and right-handed pitchers separately. Almost everyone who made this division (16 of 18 historians) picked Bill Foster as the best left-handed NeL pitcher of all time. But how does he rank against the larger pool of righties (in which Redding can be found, of course)?

Among right-handed pitchers, Paige, Williams, and Rogan are clearly the top 3. After that, Leon Day gets 5 mentions (once as a left-hander), Hilton Smith 4, Redding 3, Ray Brown 2, with Rube Foster, William Bell, Chet Brewer, and Jose Mendez getting one mention each.

The historians seem to agree that Redding is not among the top 3 right-handed NeL pitchers of all time, though one might well wonder if unfamiliarity with pre-1920 players contributes to his placement.

A few historians gave a simple rank order, which is much more illuminating.

Jim Riley's picks, in order were: Paige, Joe Williams, Bill Foster, Rogan, Day, Redding, Hilton Smith.

Jay Sanford's were: Donaldson, Joe Williams, Paige, Bill Foster, Chet Brewer, Dick Redding, Dave Brown.

Larry Lester's were: Paige, Joe Williams, Rogan, Hilton Smith, Ray Brown, Day, and Bill Foster.

Since these are 2 of the 3 votes that Redding received overall, it suggests that the voters who think well enough of Redding (or know enough about him) to rank him, saw Bill Foster as the better of the two.

But I wouldn't call this evidence overall an unequivocal endorsement of Bill Foster over Dick Redding by the expert panel. It seems likely, however, that the experts generally prefer Foster.
   48. Chris Cobb Posted: January 12, 2005 at 04:01 AM (#1073834)
Gary A. wrote:

According to John Holway:

Bill Foster, 1924-39: 146-66, .689
William Bell, 1923-36: 141-57, .712

Almost exact contemporaries and both played on very good teams. Bell's winning percentage is second among pitchers with more than 110 decisions.


True, but a distinction should be made here between "very good teams" and "mind-boggling good teams."

Based on Holway's numbers, Foster's teams during his career had a winning percentage of .610, .588 without Foster pitching.

Bell's teams (from 1923-31, there's no data for him or for the Monarchs after they leave league competition in 1931) had a winning percentage of .689, .680 without Bell pitching.

Bell is a pitcher who deserves more attention, but I don't think the similarity of his won-lost record to Foster's puts him on equal footing with Foster in terms of quality.
   49. Chris Cobb Posted: January 12, 2005 at 04:22 AM (#1073856)
One more post of data of interest on Bill Foster and then I'm done for the night. I've calculated black and gray ink scores using Holway's league leaders data from 1910-1948. These scores must be taken with several grains of salt, since there are never more than 4 categories listed (wins, win %, TRA, and Ks), the number of players listed for each category varies, the number of leagues varies, the number of teams in leagues varies, and the level of data reporting for each team varies.

Still, the lists are of some interest. Here are the top 10 in black ink and gray ink, all-time.

Black Ink
50 Satchel Paige
49 Bill Foster
44 Dick Redding
35 Joe Williams
35 Ray Brown
30 Hilton Smith
27 Bill Byrd
23 Nip Winters
23 Joe Rogan
20 Gentry Jessup

Gray Ink
130 Joe Williams
122 Ray Brown
119 Satchel Paige
118 Bill Byrd
102 Joe Rogan
97 Bill Foster
84 Hilton Smith
78 Dick Redding
72 Leon Day
68 Ted Trent
   50. kthejoker Posted: January 12, 2005 at 04:59 AM (#1073904)
jschmeagol:

Cochrane didn't have a short career, but he did have his career shortened by a beanball at age 34. A bit of difference, but the Hall of Merit shouldn't punish someone like Cochrane for having only 11 great seasons and 2 okay ones instead of 11 great ones and 5 or 6 okay ones.

IMO.
   51. KJOK Posted: January 12, 2005 at 05:42 AM (#1073965)
NEWBIES APPROX BALLOT POSITION

1. Oscar Charleston, CF/1B - Barry Bonds like.

2. Mickey Cochrane, C - Not sure I'd take him over Carter over a whole career, but a great catcher anyway.

4. Frankie Frisch, 2B - One of the greatest 2B of all time.

6. Dick Lundy, SS - Have him right behind Sewell.

7. Bill Foster, P - At least in the top 5 of Negro League pitchers all-time.
   52. Kelly in SD Posted: January 12, 2005 at 09:28 AM (#1074272)
Career
Carter: 337
Cochrane: 275

Adjusted for schedule length: Cochrane: 289

Best 3
Carter: 94
Cochrane: 89

Adjusted for schedule length: Cochrane: 94

Best 5
Carter: 151
Cochrane: 142

Adjusted for schedule length: Cochrane: 149

and it's not close in favor of Carter. Debatable.
On a per season basis it works to:
per 162 games played:
Cochrane: 30.06
Carter: 23.78

per 648 plate appearances (AB + BB + HBP):
Cochrane: 29.43
Carter: 24.57
   53. Rusty Priske Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:11 PM (#1074463)
I don't get the per 162 games or the per 648 pa measures. Schedule length, fine, because this is something that the players had no control over.

If you try to force more plate appearances out of a player that didn't make those plate appearances, you are skewing the results.

If Carter (for example), did more for his team(s) than Cochrane did, he should be ranked higher.

It isn't talent that we are measuring. It is results.

(With exceptions for WWII, etc.)
   54. TomH Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:13 PM (#1074467)
re: Ardo's Q:
Why is Van Haltren so far ahead of Ryan in the balloting?
----
GVH leads JR in most any metric I choose.

WARP: GVHG played 14 solid years, and achieved 83 WARP. If you take out his "-5" he "earned" pitching, that's 88 in 14 years. Ryan, without the -2 he also earned pitching, has 92 WARP in 17 years. An extra 4 WARP in 3 years is NOT an edge for Ryan.

Win Shares: GVH 344 total, 28.1 / yr. Ryan 316 total, 25.4 / yr.

Offense and Defense: GVH leads in OWP, .620 to .609. GVH played more CF than Ryan, although I would call their defense about even overall.
GVH leads in RCAA by 45 runs, plus whatever pitching bonus you give. That puts him pretty far ahead of Ryan on these 'squished' ballots.
   55. Chris Cobb Posted: January 12, 2005 at 02:59 PM (#1074500)
I don't get the per 162 games or the per 648 pa measures. . . . It isn't talent that we are measuring. It is results.

Two points.

First, not everyone believes that merit = results. For many voters, the question, "Was he the better player on the field when he played?" is a highly relevant question. This question clearly cuts in Cochrane's favor in a comparison to Carter, though Carter is disadvantaged in a career rate comparison because he had a decline phase to bring his career rate stats down, while Cochrane did not. A fairer rate comparison would compare their rates during their respective primes.

Second, many voters who believe that results = merit believe that results = value above replacement level. It is generally agreed that the 0 point for win shares is below replacement level. Including a rate stat in one's system, which favors players who were the most valuable on a per-game basis, provides a corrective to career win-share measures, which favors players who were durable but not outstanding.

It's for these reasons that I include a "peak rate" stat in my own system.
   56. Michael Bass Posted: January 12, 2005 at 04:51 PM (#1074715)
Kelly:

You neglected to adjust for Carter's strike-shortened season smack in the middle of his prime.

I remain baffled by the use of WS/162. Even schedule adjusting for Cochrane and not for Carter (which is massively unfair), Cochrane has at best an equal peak and still a much lesser career. Same with WARP.

Carter played 150+ games 5 teams, and 149 one more time. Cochrane never played over 140, reaching 139 once, and topping out at 135 other than that. That is real value for Carter's teams that is compeltely ignored using WS/162. Cochrane's backup was a 75 OPS+ slug. His missing games as not a positive.

I can only imagine that those WS/WARP voters who prefer Cochrane are giving him credit for a post-beanball career, something which I'm pretty sure we shouldn't be doing.

As an extra addon for Carter, though I know many don't like timelining, remember that Cochrane's stats do not include playing against the best African-American or Hispanic players of his day. Carter's do. Relatively equal raw stats (which I still contend is not the case here) should favor the post-integration player over the pre-integration player.
   57. ronw Posted: January 12, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1074830)
Gary Carter's on the ballot? I'll vote for him.

Actually, for this ballot, William Bell seems the most intriguing. He pitched for great teams, so he could be a Herb Pennock/Waite Hoyt type of player, or he could be better than that, which means he could get elected to the HOM. Fortunately, we'll have some time to chew on him, but don't let him drop off your radar.
   58. Guapo Posted: January 12, 2005 at 06:39 PM (#1074980)
Is there anyone here who is thinking about not having Charleston #1?
   59. Michael Bass Posted: January 12, 2005 at 07:02 PM (#1075048)
Along with Bell, who has an interesting record and is worth at least some analysis, I'd be interested in hearing about Jenkins and Dixon, both of whom have some % of experts supporting their HOF case.
   60. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 12, 2005 at 08:28 PM (#1075257)
Carter played 150+ games 5 teams, and 149 one more time. Cochrane never played over 140, reaching 139 once, and topping out at 135 other than that. That is real value for Carter's teams that is compeltely ignored using WS/162. Cochrane's backup was a 75 OPS+ slug. His missing games as not a positive.

How many games would Carter have played during the twenties? How many games would have Cochrane during the '80's?

I'm a huge Carter fan who believes he should have gone into the HOF on the first ballot, but Cochrane stood out just a little bit more.
   61. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 12, 2005 at 08:41 PM (#1075292)
One caveat to the current discussion on per 162g/648pa...

I give Catchers a little extra because they usually only played about 120-135 games in a 154 game season. There fore when I do the WS portion of my ballot, Catchers get roughly a 20% boost to their numbers, otherwise i don't like to break things down further than a single season. This is one reason why Edd Roush has been off my ballot; he missed a lot of games during his prime and therefore didnt' contribute as much.
   62. Michael Bass Posted: January 12, 2005 at 08:42 PM (#1075294)
I know this is bordering on silly, because they're both first ballot HOMers, but I can't let it go. :)

I'm a huge Carter fan who believes he should have gone into the HOF on the first ballot, but Cochrane stood out just a little bit more.

Might that be in large part because Cochrane wasn't competing against a decent percentage of the best available players?

This is a trivial point right now, but it's going to become more important later on, and relatively soon. Even for those who don't believe in timelining, people are going to need to apply penalties for pre-integration vs. post-integration stats, because stats are going to be harder to come by in the latter, stronger competition. This argument is about two no-brainers. The next one might be about who gets in between two guys right on the borderline.
   63. Dolf Lucky Posted: January 12, 2005 at 09:11 PM (#1075361)
Is there anyone here who is thinking about not having Charleston #1?

I will be voting Oscar #2, behind Cochrane.

This is not to be a contrarian prick, but more because Cochrane is: a) the best catcher we've seen to date; and b) I'm giving a substantial positional bonus to catchers these days.
   64. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 12, 2005 at 09:15 PM (#1075374)
Might that be in large part because Cochrane wasn't competing against a decent percentage of the best available players?

I've taken that into account, Michael.
   65. Al Peterson Posted: January 12, 2005 at 09:50 PM (#1075483)
Even for those who don't believe in timelining, people are going to need to apply penalties for pre-integration vs. post-integration stats, because stats are going to be harder to come by in the latter, stronger competition.

Michael, The problem I have with this is that I don't know that the best available players are post-integration. I have a pretty good idea that is the fact but by what factor?

By the 1980's is baseball getting the athletes? In of the 1920's what is the major professional sport - baseball. By the 1980's you're competing with football, basketball, and a myriad of lesser sports. What fraction of 'best available players' decide to take their athletic prowess elsewhere? John Elway in 1920 doesn't skip off to the NFL; he plays baseball. Whether he is a success or not is debateable but he's not in the available player pool.
   66. TomH Posted: January 12, 2005 at 10:27 PM (#1075571)
Good point. While this discussion usually gets into debates over no-blacks, population growth, scouting in Latin America / Asia, medicine advances, effects of other sports and Little Leagues for kiddies, they-don't-care-like-they-used-to-when-I-played, I prefer to check it analytically. As the deviation of performance decreases, we can be fairly sure that quality has increased. Bill James points out that other quesitons have merit (such as why are so many teenagers succedding in the 1870s?).

One reason I am not as quick to coronate Barry Bonds as the Greatest Player Ever (TM) is that we need a few years after he has retired to ensure that, for example, we haven't also seen the Greatest Pitcher(s) Ever (Clemens and/or Pedro), by far the greatest hitting catcher ever (Piazza), the best young shortstop ever (A Rod), and even the Next Best Player Ever (Pujols)-- if we wind up with so many 'top 15' players in half a generation with gaudy ERA+ and OPS+ numbers, might this indicate sumthin? Anyway, I exaggerate a bit to make a point, but I endorse such measures as standard deviation of ERA or OPS for leagues over long (5-10 year) periods to check league quality. One reason Tom Seaver is a good candidate for someone's 'all-time starting rotation', for example, is that his seemingly-only-very-good career ERA+ of 127 dwarfs others of similar career length in his time period.
   67. DavidFoss Posted: January 13, 2005 at 05:01 AM (#1076246)
1943 Preliminary Depth Chart:

C -- Cochrane-2, Bresnahan, Schang, Petway
1B -- Sisler-14, Chance, Beckley, BTaylor, Konetchy
2B -- Frisch-4, Doyle-5, Childs-8, Monroe, Dunlap
SS -- Jennings-6, Lundy-7, Sewell-15, Moore, Maranville, Bancroft
3B -- Beckwith-10, McGraw-12, Leach, Traynor, JJohnson, Williamson
LF -- CJones-11, Poles, Veach, Burns
CF -- Charleston-1, Browning, Roush, HWilson, Van Haltren, Duffy
RF -- Cravath, Ryan, Hooper, BHerman, SRice
P -- BFoster-3, Griffith-9, Redding-13, Welch, Rixey, Joss, Waddell, Grimes

Oscar & Mickey get my elect-me votes.

I'm looking forward to hearing more about BFoster & DLundy in their discussion threads because I've slated them quite high for starters.

Judy Johnson doesn't look he's going to be close to my ballot.

Babe Herman could hit, he was the best of the mighty class of 1930 NL OF-ers who posted a whopping .985 OPS as a group. A generation ago, a guy like him would get a fair amount of bottom-of-the-ballot support. We've got so many active candidates that I'm now wondering if Herman will get a single vote. The bar has risen a bit as we enter a new generation of candidates.
   68. andrew siegel Posted: January 13, 2005 at 02:51 PM (#1076696)
For now:

(1) Charleston (new)--Duh.
(2) Cochrane (new)-- I see him as very similar to Buck Ewing, down to the fact that a straight calculation of the numbers has him MUCH lower than people would otherwise guess. If you treat catcher as a 130-game per year position, he's closer to number one than number three. If you treat it as a 154-game per year position, he's a few spots down the ballot even with a positional bonus.
(3) B. Foster (new)-- I'm in the odd position of viewing his career much more highly than you guys (I see him as an All-Time top 20 pitcher) and his brother's much more poorly (about the 10th best Negro League pitcher, maybe the 400th best player of All-Time).
(4) Frisch (new)-- Fully qualified, resisting the urge to penalize him for his butchery of the HOF.
(5) Van Haltren (1st)
(6) Jennings (2nd)
(7) Jones (3rd)
(8) Beckwith (5th)
(9) Childs (4th)
(10) Duffy (6th)
(11) Roush (8th)
(12) Rixey (9th)
(13) Grimes (10th)
(14) Chance (12th)
(15) Sewell (13th)

I have Lundy (new) 16th and Moore (14th) 17th. I am struggling with whether those guys and Sewell belong above or below the Duffy-Roush-Rixey-Grimes-Chance set.

Judy Johnson is a non-starter, a pure HoF mistake. It shouldn't be surprising, of course, that the HoF inducted a couple of clearly unworthy Negro Leaguers. After all, they inducted many more than a few clearly unworthy major leaguers.

I like Bottomely quite a bit as a player, but he's below Chance, Beckley, Sisler, Fournier, and Konetchy, and thus will never sniff my ballot.

I am also reconsidering Bresnahan and Schang to see if they move up onto the ballot based on a comparison with Cochrane.
   69. PhillyBooster Posted: January 13, 2005 at 04:17 PM (#1076814)
For those you care, and based on the size of the Beckwith thread, many do:

After years of being the "Mikey" of pitchers and Negro Leaguers (He'll vote for anyone!), but who, contrarily, has been consistently not voting for one of the most popular pitcher (Waddell) or Negro Leaguers (Beckwith), I have reconsidered my latter position, and will be moving Beckwith up above Monroe (10-13) on the next ballot.

I had previously had him ranked even with Sewell, in the high 20s. Due to the numerous new ballot additions in 1943, this is actually a much larger move than it looks like.

In other news, I give very large catcher bonuses, but will still have Cochrane below Frisch.
   70. Paul Wendt Posted: January 13, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1077022)
(4) Frisch (new)-- Fully qualified, resisting the urge to penalize him for his butchery of the HOF.

Terry assisted, right?
   71. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 13, 2005 at 11:49 PM (#1078048)
My prelim...

1. Oscar
2. Cochrane
3. Frisch
4. Jennings (1)
5. Foster - Good shot to ove up in 1943, but for now he is below my pet candidate. ELECT JENNINGS!
6. Childs (3)
7. Griffith (6)
8. Rixey (5)
9. Duffy (7)
10. Redding (8)
11. Waddell (9)
12. Van haltren (11)
13. Mendez (12)
14. Moore (14)
15. Beckwith (15)

Sisler (13) and Leach (11) move to make room for the newbies. Sisler because, well I have decided that I like Moore's peak better than his and am being convinced that Beckwith is better. As for Leach, he rocks the faces off of all other eligible ML 3B in Win Shares. But I have finally come to the conclusion that his time in CF has a lot to do with this. Win Shares LOVES CFers.

I think I like Lundy better than Joe Sewell, but if it looks like he wasn't much better he wont' make my ballot. If Judy Johnson was as good as Pie Traynor we are looking at him being in the high twenties, and maybe a ballot in the three and four years.. If he was as good as Rabbit Maranville, he may not make the top 50.
   72. Jim Sp Posted: January 14, 2005 at 12:32 AM (#1078134)
I'm a little lower than the consensus on Frisch, based on the number of above average hitting 2B during this period.

Babe Herman #36.
Bottomley, Hafey, and Haines had nice careers, but are nowhere near getting on the ballot.
Judy Johnson, based on Chris Cobb’s analysis is off ballot.
Rap Dixon and Fats Jenkins I think will be off ballot.

1)Oscar Charleston--
2)Mickey Cochrane--If you don’t have him in the top 5, it's hard to see how any reasonable number of catchers will be in your HoM.
3)Bill Foster
4)Sewell--109 OPS+, reasonably long career, good shortstop (A- Win Shares). Yes, I am allowing for his switch to 3B at the end of his career.
5)Frisch--Contemporaries at 2B are good hitters (e.g. Hornsby, Gehringer, Lazzeri, Grantham, Bishop, Myer, Herman), so he doesn’t stand out as much as I expected.
6)Schang--His rate stats would put him in the HoM, but a look at each individual year isn’t impressive. Still, a hitting catcher with his career length isn’t common...Bill James rates him a C+ fielder in Win Shares, but says he was a good catcher in the NHBA. Stands out from the extreme lack of catching candidates recently.
7)Doyle— His hitting is legitimately outstanding, he played 2nd base, and a C+ defender by Win Shares. 126 career OPS+, compare to contemporary George Cutshaw, who was a regular 2B for 11 years with an OPS+ of 86. #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.
8)Lundy--
9)Beckwith-- Was Beckwith, in his prime, was the best hitter in the Negro Leagues? He played a considerable amount at the difficult end of the defensive spectrum. I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on his “unusual circumstances”. His selection as manager indicates to me that his intangibles weren’t all negative. Could be higher. I might regret this, but he made my PHoM in 1940 over Coveleski and Faber.
10)Beckley— Behind the big 3, much better than 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, we’re not talking about Ed Kranepool here.
11)Rixey—Early Wynn will be the next pitcher with more IP, his W/L percentage isn’t high because he didn’t get a lot of support. ERA+ is very good at 115 for such a long career.
12)Waddell—Waddell has a run of 7 years (1902-1908) in which he was blowing people away, in three of those years with an ERA+ over 165. 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.
13)Cravath— Great peak, great high minor league play.
14)Bill Monroe—Riley’s Biographical Encylopedia likes him a lot.
15)Bancroft--Better than I thought.
   73. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 14, 2005 at 12:37 AM (#1078145)
Jim, not to pick on you or anything, but Sewell over Frisch? I gues syou explained it by saying that there are lots of good hitting 2B in the 20s/30s, but can you go into more detail? I just dont' get it.

Again, I dont' want to sound confrontational. If you want, my prelim is right above yours. Feel free to pick that apart if you wish :-)
   74. Kelly in SD Posted: January 14, 2005 at 01:24 AM (#1078223)
Jim Sp

Well there goes our perfect score...
It looks like our ballots will share 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 and maybe 9.

Kelly
   75. Jim Sp Posted: January 14, 2005 at 01:41 AM (#1078256)
jschmeagol, your ballot looks fine. Compared to Kelly in SD, you are in perfect agreement with me.

Frisch and Sewell are about even as hitters, Frisch is a much better baserunner and has a longer career. I believe that Sewell was the more valuable defensive player, since he could play SS and Frisch could not.

The defensive spectrum in this era is shifted in comparison with modern baseball. In the early lively ball era, defense at 2B is not as important as defense at SS.

Look at Sewell's contemporary SS peers who weren't good hitters:

Maranville, OPS+ 82
Rogell, 82
Peckinpaugh, 87
Lary, 90
Durocher, 66

Quite a few more are in the 90's in OPS+ (Bartell, Bancroft, Wright, Kress, English, Weaver).

The list for Frisch is only Wambsganss at 78, all of his peers have OPS+ above average:

Hornsby 175
Bishop 102
Grantham 121
McManus 102
Gehringer 124
Lazzeri 121
Myer 108
Cuccinello 104
Herman 112
Frey 104
Gordon 120
Stanky 109

Sewell over Frisch doesn't sound right to me either, to be honest with you. But Sewell was a grade A shortstop, which in my opinion is tremendously valuable. Frisch was used only 75 games at SS in his career. In my thinking, Sewell has to get large advantage in defensive credit, which counters Frisch's career length and baserunning advantages.
   76. Gary A Posted: January 14, 2005 at 01:41 AM (#1078258)
Nobody's said much about Rap Dixon. Here are his 1928 stats with the Baltimore Black Sox:

Batting
*-led east (ECL disbanded in late May)
G-69 (team 70)
AB-257
H-100*
D-16 (2nd)
T-7*
HR-12* (tied with teammate Jud Wilson)
R-58 (tied for 2nd)
W-31 (3rd)
HP-2
SF-1
SH-4
SB-18 (tied for 2nd)
TB-166*
AVE-.389 (2nd; eNeL .282)
OBA-.457 (2nd; eNeL .333)
SLG-.646 (2nd; eNeL .383)

The Black Sox played more games than any other eastern team, and probably had an easier schedule than most.

Fielding-rf
G-55
DI-467.7
PO-96*
A-15*
E-6*
DP-2*
RF-2.14* (eNeL rf 1.65)
FPCT-.949 (eNeL rf .952)

cf
G-15
DI-124
PO-31
A-0
E-1
DP-0
RF-2.25 (eNeL cf 2.52)
FPCT-.969 (eNeL cf .965)

Eastern right fielders accounted for 26.3% of their teams' outfield putouts; the Black Sox right fielders, mostly Dixon, accounted for 30.7%.
   77. Jim Sp Posted: January 14, 2005 at 01:44 AM (#1078262)
Kelly in SD,
I knew we could work things out with Oscar's help.
   78. Jim Sp Posted: January 14, 2005 at 01:50 AM (#1078276)
Griffith is in my PHoM but off my ballot this year, is anyone else feeling this pain?
   79. jimd Posted: January 14, 2005 at 03:32 AM (#1078511)
Regularly in the 2B defensive Win Shares leaders,

James lists 5 from an 8 team league. This means that Doyle usually didn't get hurt or have a competitor/replacement stealing his innings (as would typically be the case for # 6, 7, and 8)

WS Gold Glove in 1917.

One of those odd years when noone in the NL had a good year. 3 AL 2b-men topped him. It's the lowest gold-glove 2b score of the decade (tied with war-shortened 1918).

League leading scores 1912-1922:
AL- NL-
6.1 6.2 1911
9.5 5.7 1912
6.1 6.5 1913
5.8 6.0 1914
7.8 7.4 1915
6.9 6.5 1916
5.8 4.4 1917 Doyle's WS Gold Glove
5.5 4.4 1918 (War shortened, add 20% to adjust)
7.0 7.0 1919 (140 game schedule, add 10% to adjust)
8.7 6.6 1920
   80. jimd Posted: January 14, 2005 at 03:57 AM (#1078552)
The defensive spectrum in this era is shifted in comparison with modern baseball.

Thinking out loud. There were two major changes in baseball around 1921 - banning the spitball and making clean baseballs the norm. Both had the effect of making the ball easier to hit (straighter pitches and more visible ball). Less topped grounders and popups, more hard grounders and line drives. Until the majority of hitters follow Ruth and start upper-cutting the ball to the OF, good reaction time becomes even more important at 3B, and, to lesser extents, SS and 2B. Maybe the apparent weakness at both 3B and SS is a result of an increase in the defensive skill necessary? (Or at least a perception that it was.)
   81. Brent Posted: January 14, 2005 at 05:53 AM (#1078796)
Gary A:

I've been meaning to ask you, where is your excellent data coming from? I mean, box scores didn't carry information on batter walks, hit by pitch, etc., did they? Do you have access to play by play information or something?
   82. Gary A Posted: January 14, 2005 at 06:34 AM (#1078870)
Brent: yes, it comes from box scores. A large number of box scores had hit by pitch (and sacrifices--some even differentiated between sac hits and sac flies). Almost no box scores had batter walks--but they are easily deduced when you have at bats, sac hits, and hit batsmen, plus walks by pitchers. Left on base figures, which appear in a good number of boxes, help too.

Game accounts often have good information, too, enabling you to confirm batters' walks and other things. Also, there are some play-by-play accounts of games printed in newspapers--the East-West All Star games and World Series, but also a fair number of regular-season contests. The Chicago Defender in 1921, for example, printed a few dozen play-by-play accounts of important games. The 1924 Baltimore Afro-American had some, too.

Runs batted in, batters' strikeouts, and caught stealing, on the other hand, are only available from game accounts and play-by-plays. I think I've run into a few boxes in the 1930s that included RBI, but that's all.

Actually, the stats that are most complete are fielding stats, since every box score has putouts, assists, and errors, and a large majority carry double plays. The only exceptions are Chicago box scores, which often lumped putouts and assists together as "chances."

I don't have access to any scoresheets, though I think a few exist. There are some Hilldale scorebooks floating around, apparently, but I don't know who owns them or what they contain. They would be incredibly useful, since Philadelphia papers didn't put at bats in their box scores--meaning you have to do what I hate the most, estimating at bats--which, of course, makes attributing walks accurately impossible. That's a real problem with Hilldale hitters' stats. You know how many walks the *team* had, but not how to assign them (unless the accompanying story tells you).

Luckily, in the 1920s at least, probably 95% or more of western box scores (as well boxes for games in Baltimore, Washington, New York, and some other eastern cities) are very good, enabling us to know batters' walks and other information with a great deal of confidence.

One of the things that drew me into collecting NeL stats was when I ran across some of these box scores and realized there was so much more information in them than any of the published stats to this point would lead you to believe.

Sorry to go on for so long--it's obviously something I spend a lot of time thinking about!
   83. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 14, 2005 at 03:37 PM (#1079324)
Preliminary Ballot with comments on new guys where appropriate

1 Charleston
2 Frisch: Peak/prime a little better than GVH, career better than Duffy, and, as a middle infielder, probably comparable to GVH.
? (Foster): As you might imagine I don't really have a strong sense of where Foster will end up yet. I've just put him here because of his strong reputation, but I've got no real idea at this point, except that I expect him to appear above Mendez.
4 GVH
5 Duffy
6 Poles
7 Mendez
8 Rixey
9 Burns
10 Roush
11 Cochrane: I do award bonuses to catchers, based on playing time. If they fall below about 525 PAs in a season, then I give them 30% on the WS side. It ends up being a small bonus, as it should be, for durable, first-string catchers like Cochrane. My system awards him 12 extra WS above what he would have received after a proration to 162-game schedule. His peak, prime, and career turn out to be almost exactly comparable to Beckwith's.
12 Beckwith
13 Jennings
14 Leach
15 W. Cooper

-Lundy is well off the ballot, down in the Rabbit hole with Maranville.
-Johnson is well off the ballot as well.
-I'm still considering Dixon and Jenkins.
-Bottomley wore his hat like Jimmy Rollins; Herman got hit in the head and ended up on third with too many other Dodgers; they don't say Haines until I say they say Haines, and I don't say they say Haines; Chick Hafey wore glasses and missed a lot of games.
   84. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: January 14, 2005 at 04:51 PM (#1079523)
If we're talking about the tables in the Win Shares book, at this point in time James isn't listing a top 5 for Defensive Win Shares by position. I don't have the book handy, so I don't know when he expands the lists, but it hasn't happened "yet". OTOH, I don't know what Jim's referring to when he talks about Doyle being "Regularly in the 2B Def WS Leaders."
   85. Paul Wendt Posted: January 14, 2005 at 05:11 PM (#1079570)
Dr. Chaleeko:
11 Cochrane: I do award bonuses to catchers, based on playing time. If they fall below about 525 PAs in a season, then I give them 30% on the WS side. It ends up being a small bonus, as it should be, for durable, first-string catchers like Cochrane.

30% of the shortfall below 525 PA? Eg, prorate 425 PA to 455 PA (after prorating to 162-game standard, I think).
   86. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 14, 2005 at 05:25 PM (#1079609)
I can understand somebody placing Frisch before Cochrane. I don't agree with it, but I can understand it.

But what I don't understand is not placing them at the top of the ballot. Were they both great career players? Yes (both high up the list for their respective positions at the time of their retirements). Were they both great peak players? Yes (though Cochrane stands out among catchers all-time more than Frisch does).
   87. Daryn Posted: January 14, 2005 at 05:57 PM (#1079706)
To make John happy, I'll post my pro-Cochrane preliminary ballot now. I had thought Foster was going to be higher but I am not yet convinced he was close to inner-circle:

7 pitchers and 2 catchers on the ballot this time.

1. Oscar Charleston – I like those 761 MLE Home Runs.

2. Mickey Cochrane – the best catcher we’ve seen in, like, forever. (Utilize Valley Girl accent and emphasis for full effect).

3. Mickey Welch – 300 wins, lots of grey ink. RSI data shows those wins are real. Compares fairly well to Keefe. I like his oft repeated record against HoMers.

4. Frankie Frisch – has those hits I like and he played second base quite well. Quite a bit better than the backlog.

5. Jake Beckley -- ~3000 hits but no black ink at all. Crawford (HOMer) and Wheat (HOMer) are two of his three most similars.

6. George Sisler – Hits impress me and he had a lot of them, plus a better peak than Beckley. I’ve put Beckley ahead of him because I’m a career voter.

7. Sam Rice – close to Beckley – I’ve put him behind Beckley and Sisler in a nod to the intelligence of the consensus. Pretty close to 9000 hits in these three candidates and it looks like they’ll side-by-side on my ballot for at least the next 15 to 20 years.

8. Bill Foster – consensus has him better than Redding, and Redding is good enough for me. The beginning of pitcher row.

9. Burleigh Grimes – takes Faber’s spot on my ballot. I like the wins, don’t like the ERA+. Welch-lite.

10. Eppa Rixey – back to his original spot in a dead heat with Grimes and Faber (the latter now elected).

11. Dick Redding – probably the 6th or 7th best blackball pitcher of all-time (behind, at least, Williams, Paige, Foster, Foster and Rogan), and that is good enough for me.

12. Rube Waddell -- I like the three times ERA+ lead, the career 134 ERA+ and, of course, all those strikeouts (plus the 1905 Triple Crown).

13. Clark Griffith – 921 similarity score with mcginnity, who was 1st on my ballot when elected. He is barely worse than Grimes and barely better than Mendez, Joss, Luque, Pennock, Quinn, McCormick, Cicotte, Willis, Bender, Mays, Cooper, Shocker, Mullane and Mullin, but I thought six pitchers in a row was enough.

14. 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. I like him better than Schang because he compared better to his contemporaries, if you count him as a catcher.

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.

I have Johnson and Lundy in the late-20s.
   88. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 14, 2005 at 06:24 PM (#1079781)
Paul and everyone,

I haven't revamped my system in a while, so it's actually a little more generous than that. My underlying assumption is that catchers typically miss a lot of games due to the rigors of the position and, therefore, the system is there to equalize them to other full-time position players, not to give credit for something that didn't happen. (Though I guess any catcher bonus could be construed that way).

I've been a little afraid to actually put it out for everyone to see because it's not quite right, but perhaps you all could offer me some advice on whether my method makes sense.

Here's how I've been doing it; I'll use Cochrane's 1926 season as an example:

For each season:
1) Start by adjusting PA and WS to 162 games.

Cochrane played amassed 452 PAs and 14 WS. Multiplying by 1.05, that's 475 162adjPAs and 14.7 162adjWS.

2) Then divide the 162adjPA by 525 (I chose it because 125 G or a little more than 75% of a 162 season seemed like a reasonable definition of full-time play---maybe the standard should be higher?).

475/525 = .90

3) If quotient is 1.0 or higher, retain adjWS as season's total. If not read on....

Nope...

4) Determine % of games at C, then divide that into the 162ajdWS to determine how many of the 162adjWS will be bonused (we'll call these 162adjWS(b).

126 games, 123 at catcher, so .96

.96 x 14.7 162adjWS = 14.1 162adjWS(b)

5) Multiply the 162adjWS(b) by the catcher bonus of 1.3 to get the bonus adjusted 162adjWS (let's call these 162adjWSb).

14.1 162adjWS(b) * 1.3 bonus = 18.3 162adjWSb

6) Subtract the 162adjWS(b) determined in step 4 from the 162adjWS determined in step 1 to figure the 162adjWS earned away from C.

14.7 - 14.1 = .6 162adjWS

7) Add the 162adjWSb determined in step 5 to the 162adjWS earned away from C as determined in step 6 to get the final bonus and schedule adjusted WS, rounding up or down from .5.

18.3 + .6 = 18.9 or 19 WS.

Obviously this is generous to guys who come in at like 520 PA, but I figure it's likely to all balance out. Perhaps that's a poor assumption?

Here's what it does to Cochrane's career.

BJWS: 275
162AdjWS: 289
162AdjWSb: 12 WS
New total: 301

Under this system, Cochrane earns bonuses only in 1925, 1926, 1936, and 1937.

The beauty here is that it's easy to do in a spreadsheet where all i have to do is type in a few columns of numbers. The results seem reasonable. Here are career BJWS, 162adjWS, and Dr.CWS as determined by this system for the top catchers i history (not including Bennett who I haven't done) as well as the overall increase between 162adjWS and Dr.CWS:

Fisk 365, 370, 415, 12%
Berra 375, 392, 414, 6%
Hartnett 325, 341, 414, 21%
Dickey 314, 330, 384, 16%
Bench 365, 365, 376, 3%
Carter 337, 346, 356, 3%
Simmons 325, 325, 336, 3%
Torre 315, 316, 325, 3%
Piazza 295, 307, 318, 4%
Freehan 267, 267, 296, 11%
I-Rod 264, 272, 296, 9%
Bresnahan 231, 248, 276, 11%
Campanella 207, 217, 238, 10%
   89. DavidFoss Posted: January 14, 2005 at 06:37 PM (#1079808)
If we're talking about the tables in the Win Shares book, at this point in time James isn't listing a top 5 for Defensive Win Shares by position. I don't have the book handy, so I don't know when he expands the lists, but it hasn't happened "yet". OTOH, I don't know what Jim's referring to when he talks about Doyle being "Regularly in the 2B Def WS Leaders."

James does yearly top five lists by position in the electronic version of Win Shares.
   90. jimd Posted: January 14, 2005 at 07:14 PM (#1079877)
James does yearly top five lists by position in the electronic version of Win Shares.

Win Shares Digital Update. It's mostly breakdowns of each players Batting, Fielding, Pitching Win Shares by season. There are two additional small sections; the expanded leader-boards by Year and League (top 12 total, top 5 in Batting, Pitching, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, OF, Catcher); and career profiles by birthyear, a line showing player totals by age group: Young, Prime, Past-Prime, Final. I wouldn't call it essential, though it's much easier to find the career data here than in the book.

Don't confuse this with product-code "EWNS", which is an electronic (PDF) version of the paper book. If trying to find stuff in the book is driving you nuts, then the electronic version has some advantages (a search feature). The book has its advantages too.

Has anybody figured out a way to export data from these digital versions to files, spreadsheets, etc?
   91. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 14, 2005 at 10:24 PM (#1080424)
I should point out about the catchers I listed: Dickey doesn't include any war credit, nor any discounts (at least none that I recall).

Fisk, Bench, Carter, Simmons, Piazza, and I-Rod all had strike seasons prorated to 162 games.

Also, Campy's numbers include no credit for his NgL play which will undoubtedly increase his totals fairly substantially.
   92. karlmagnus Posted: January 15, 2005 at 12:07 AM (#1080655)
What about Schang?
   93. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 15, 2005 at 12:13 AM (#1080661)
Dr. Chaleeko,

If I am reading what you wrote right then you are docking Cochrane because he was extra durable during his prime. Is that correct? This doesn't seemrright. If a guy is more durable than other players at his position he deserves whatever boosts that come along with that. The baseline shouldnt' be what Cochrane did year to year, but what the average catcher (or 2/3 catcher or whatever) does year to year. The baseline should be every other catcher in MLB, and if Cochrane exceeds that he should still get the bonus.

Does that make sense? Did I read your post right?

Also, while I am nto a Spotswood Poles fan at all, could he possibly have been better than Cochrane?
   94. EricC Posted: January 15, 2005 at 01:44 AM (#1080795)
1943 prelim. It should come as no surprise that I endorse Cochrane, Charleston, and Frisch for the HoM. Because of positional balance in my system, Cochrane comes in above Charleston. No other new NeLers make my ballot because of my level of caution/skepticism, although Bill Foster comes very close. Although Judy Johnson is a HoFer, I agree with the opinion that there are a lot of better NeL candidates. Beckley, Hooper, and Rice seem like birds of a feather, so I agree with those who ask why some Beckley supporters don't support the others. If I had to choose a "pet" candidate, it would be Wally Schang: 1663 games, 85% of them as catcher, with a 117 OPS+ in a strong league.

1. Mickey Cochrane (N)
2. Oscar Charleston (N)
3. Wally Schang (1)
4. Joe Sewell (2)
5. Frankie Frisch (N)
6. Roger Bresnahan (3)
7. Eppa Rixey (4)
8. Pie Traynor (5)
9. Sam Rice (6)
10. Jose Mendez (8)
11. Harry Hooper (7)
12. George "Rube" Waddell (9)
13. Jake Beckley (10)
14. Ray Schalk (12)
15. Urban Shocker (11)

16-20: Jack Quinn, Cicotte, Bill Foster, Rommel, Sol White
21-25: Van Haltren, Jennings, Ryan, Duffy, Childs
26-30: Griffith, Joss, Mays, Luque, McGraw
31-35: Bond, Gardner, Chance, Redding, Tiernan
36-40: Sad Sam Jones, Pennock, Maranville, Fielder Jones, McGuire
41-45: Sisler, Peckinpaugh, Cross, Cravath, Kamm
46-50: Doyle, Grimes, Taylor, Leach, Bancroft

77. Beckwith. Hall of the Very Good territory. Count me as a skeptic, but I think that he didn't stand out enough from his contemporaries to be a clear-cut HoMer. For those who think that I have stricter NeL standards than the HoF- I may be on the Jud Wilson bandwagon in coming years.
   95. Chris Cobb Posted: January 15, 2005 at 04:23 AM (#1081030)
Eric,

Here are the top black ink and gray ink scores I have found so far for Negro-League hitters:

Gibson 81/146
Suttles 56/145
Charleston 54/174
Stearnes 51/178
Wells 28/108
Beckwith 23/77
Wilson 12/97
Mackey 12/51
Bell 10/60

Here are the all-time batting average leaders for Negro-Leaguers with more than 2,000 at-bats

Jud Wilson .354 (4188 ab)
John Beckwith .352 (2176 ab)
Josh Gibson .351 (2875 ab)
Joe Rogan .348 (2039 ab)
Mule Suttles .341 (3230 ab)
Oscar Charleson .340 (4972 ab)

I'm not sure what Beckwith is missing that he would need in order to stand out from his contemporaries. (He's also #8 in career home runs and tied for 9th in HR%.) He's clearly not as good as Charleston, Gibson, Suttles, or Stearnes, but that's only to say that he's not as good as the NeL first-ballot HoMers.

I agree that Jud Wilson will have a good case in a few years' time, though exactly how good remains to be seen.
   96. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 15, 2005 at 04:51 AM (#1081077)
Karlmagnus,

Here's Schang and a couple other eligibles not covered in the last list.

NAME: BJWS, 162adjWS, Dr.CWS, effect of bonus

Schang: 245, 260, 309, 19%
Schalk: 191, 202, 242, 20%
Chance: 237, 255, 263, 3%
Farrell: 183, 207, 233, 13%
McGuire: 189, 220, 259, 18%
Clements: 146, 170, 211, 24%
   97. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 15, 2005 at 05:21 AM (#1081103)
If I am reading what you wrote right then you are docking Cochrane because he was extra durable during his prime. Is that correct? This doesn't seemr right. If a guy is more durable than other players at his position he deserves whatever boosts that come along with that. The baseline shouldnt' be what Cochrane did year to year, but what the average catcher (or 2/3 catcher or whatever) does year to year. The baseline should be every other catcher in MLB, and if Cochrane exceeds that he should still get the bonus.

Also, while I am nto a Spotswood Poles fan at all, could he possibly have been better than Cochrane?


jschmeagol,

I think you would be right if I were trying to compare catchers only to themselves, but what I'm hoping to do is narrow the gap between catchers and position players. I wouldn't need to offer bonuses to catcher if I were only comparing them to one another, I would simply use 162adjWS. That's why I'm basing the bonus on what might be loosely called "regular playing time" instead of rates established by the league's catchers.

It is very much possible that I'm disadvantaging durable catchers in terms of how much bonus I'm giving them relative to other catchers due to durability, and I think that was Paul Wendt's question as well. But, luckily, that's easily fixable in Excel!!!

I'll answer the Poles question on a subsequent post.
   98. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 15, 2005 at 05:30 AM (#1081108)
I think your question about Poles is reasonable, and I'm still mulling that one. In fact, after posting my prelim, I spent most of my afternoon reconsidering all of my ballot slots (esp Poles's, Mendez's, Beckwith's, and, now, Moore's). Poles lost a little ground.

Hhere's where I'm at at 11:24 PM. With the estimates we have for Poles on his thread and my system for alloting bonuses to C, I get these outcomes:

3 year peak
Poles 95 WS
Cochrane 93 WS
Yearly difference: .67 WS

5 year peak
Poles 153
Cochrane 149
Year difference: .8 WS

10 year prime
Poles 279
Cochrane 267
Yearly difference: 1.3 WS

15 year extended prime
Poles 344
Cochrane 301
Yearly difference: 2.9 WS

Career
Poles (14 years) 344, 24.6 WS/yr
Cochrane (13 years) 301, 23.2 WS/yr
Yearly difference: 1.4 WS/yr

Now, I do recognize that it's probably better to use WS/675PA or something, but I was just looking at the est WS for Poles to avoid getting too granular with his est stats. What I have here is a catcher who's been bonused getting really close to a CF's estimated stats, but never once surpassing him at any of the intervals I measure at, and ultimately having lower career totals.

When I posted earlier today, I thought that might have been enough to keep Poles ahead. Right now, I'm not so sure, but I don't think it's unreasonable, based on what I've got in front of me, to be considering Poles this way....

The possible fly in my ointment is if I'm misinterpreting the Poles info. And good old human error is ALWAYS a possibility!
   99. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: January 15, 2005 at 05:35 AM (#1081110)
One more thought on Cochrane.

I'm a contrarian by nature, and as I see everyone clamoring for him to be atop their ballots (above Oscar or Frankie or whomever), I'm also considering whether or not Mickey Cochrane's reputation exceeds the contribution he made as measured by the omnibus stats.

Coming into this "year" I'd have assumed him a slam-dunk, basically because I'd read a lot of glowing quotes about him. Then I saw 279 BJWS.

So I'm just throwing this out there, but maybe there's some puffiness in his reputation thanks to a) being a catcher, a "field general" b) playing on a bunch of winning teams, c) being a .300 hitter when AVG was more highly valued.
   100. DanG Posted: January 15, 2005 at 05:51 AM (#1081125)
One thing about Cochrane is he has, by far, the highest career OBP of any catcher. Of course, he played in an era of high offense, but it's still impressive. I find 7 catcher with a career OBP of .380+:

.419 Cochrane
.393 Schang
.391 Tenace
.387 Kendall
.386 Bresnahan
.385 Piazza
.382 Dickey
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