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Monday, February 21, 2005

1946 Ballot Discussion

1946 (February 27)—elect 2
WS W3 Rookie Name-Pos (Died)

375 106.6 1924 Al Simmons-LF (1956)
280 81.9 1929 Earl Averill-CF (1983)
241 72.3 1930 Wally Berger-CF (1988)
181 65.9 1932 Dizzy Dean-P (1974)
170 57.1 1927 Willis Hudlin-P (2002)
170 48.3 1930 Gus Suhr-1B (2004)
161 47.1 1925 Billy Rogell-SS (2003)
145 48.2 1929 Lyn Lary-SS (1973)
151 39.4 1931 Pepper Martin-CF/3B (1965)
142 42.4 1922 Syl Johnson-P (1985)
127 36.6 1934 Zeke Bonura-1B (1987)
139 31.7 1928 Red Kress-SS (1962)
097 31.0 1932 Oral Hildebrand-P (1977)
098 29.3 1932 Tex Carleton-P (1977)

1946 (February 27)—elect 2
HF% Career Name-pos (born) BJ – MVP - All-Star

HF 23-41 Turkey Stearnes-CF (1901) #1 lf - 3 - 12*
88% 23-44 Mule Suttles-1B/LF (1901) #2 lf - 3.5 - 8*
52% 22-44 Newt Allen-2B (1901) #2 2b - 0 - 8*
00% 20-41 Bill Holland-P(1901) 1 - 1*
00% 24-40 Frog Redus-LF (1905) #9 lf - 0 - 2*
00% 24-40 Dewey Creacy-3B (??) #10 3b - 0 - 3*

Players Passing Away in 1945
HoMers
Age Elected

None

Candidates
Age Eligible

83 1900 Paul Radford-RF
79 1909 George VanHaltren-CF
77 1907 Elmer Smith-LF/P
72 1912 Sam Mertes-LF
67 1916 George Stone-LF
57 1931 Bobby Veach-LF

Thanks to Dan and Chris for the lists!

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 21, 2005 at 04:45 PM | 178 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 22, 2005 at 02:11 AM (#1158163)
hot topics
   2. EricC Posted: February 22, 2005 at 02:28 AM (#1158205)
(Didn't realize that Newt Allen was eligible; so did not place him. Will correct this oversight later.)

1946 prelim.

1. Al Simmons
I agree, better than Goslin. Another run of the mill HoMer.
2. Wally Schang
See my post #105 on the "Estimating league quality" thread. Anybody who thinks we should go deeper than Cochrane/Hartnett/Dickey in prewar catchers should look long and hard at Schang. Schang had a 117 OPS+ in 1663 games. In the AL. Contemporary player George J. Burns had a 114 OPS+ in 1845 games. In the NL. And he was a left fielder . And, by my count, at least 8 people voted for J who did not have Schang on their ballots....
3. Joe Sewell
4. Earl Averill
Aveage Frank Baker's and Elmer Flick's BPros translated batting stats and you get Earl Averill. Seems about right. Being the best ML CF of the 1930s is icing on the cake. Should be a HoMer, but we've already seen some backlash. Note that this rating gives no credit for minor league play, but, considering his consistency in the major leagues after his late start, probably deserves above average minor league credit/subjective bonus for those inclined to give it.
5. Sam Rice
With Hooper, among backlog leaders in career league-adjusted Win Shares above replacement.
6. Roger Bresnahan
7. Wes Ferrell
8. Jose Mendez
9. Mule Suttles
The HoF has elected 39 (!) players born in the single decade 1900-1909. Half of the NELers in the HoF were also born in this one decade. Clearly, the overrating of ML players from this era carried over to NEL voting. The last thing that we should be doing is rushing in more NELers from this same era. Suttles and Stearnes were great hitters for a while, but baseball history is full of players who were great hitters for a while without being HoMers. My number crunching shows that Suttles hit better than Stearnes, and had a better career. Combined with expert consensus, I conclude that Suttles was the outstanding NEL OF born in the 19 aughts. As for Beckwith (born 1902), Jud Wilson (born 1899- did you know that only 1 NELer in the HoF was born during the 1890s?) looks much more to me like the kind of player that the consensus would like to think that Beckwith was. Wilson will make my ballot. Barring the release of a NEL sabermetric encyclopedia, which could convince me othewise, Beckwith never will.
10. Eppa Rixey
11. Harry Hooper
12. Waite Hoyt
13. Pie Traynor
14. Heinie Manush
15. Urban Shocker
24. Wally Berger.
Bill James rates Berger 13th amongst CF, Averill 14th. If somebody can explain this, please let me know.
40. Turkey Stearnes.
Noteworthy NEL power-hitting OF.
83. Dizzy Dean.
Peak/career combination falls short for my tastes. Lefty Gomez will be the next "short career" pitcher to make my ballot. If I were to give more credit to peak, I'd favor Addie Joss before Dean.
   3. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 22, 2005 at 02:34 AM (#1158224)
2. Wally Schang
See my post #105 on the "Estimating league quality" thread. Anybody who thinks we should go deeper than Cochrane/Hartnett/Dickey in prewar catchers should look long and hard at Schang. Schang had a 117 OPS+ in 1663 games. In the AL. Contemporary player George J. Burns had a 114 OPS+ in 1845 games. In the NL. And he was a left fielder . And, by my count, at least 8 people voted for J who did not have Schang on their ballots....


I'll have him in the top ten in '46, Eric.
   4. Ardo Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:01 AM (#1158280)
1946 prelim:

Elect-me:
1. Turkey Stearns - among the all-time top 75.
2. Al Simmons - ditto for top 100.

Still shifting:
3. John Beckwith (1)
4. Edd Roush (6)
5. Clark Griffith (5)
6. Earl Averill (new)
7. Eppa Rixey (7)
8. Joe Sewell (8)
9. George Sisler (4) - Good counting stats, but not an upper-tier HoMer as I once thought.
10. Mule Suttles (new) - Seems like a Jim Rice-type borderliner, helped by his home parks.
11. Jose Mendez (9)
12. Hugh Duffy (10)
13. Wes Ferrell (12)
-------- PHoM line --------
14. Dick Lundy (11)
15. Jake Beckley (14)

16-20: Schang, Leach, Redding, Ned Wm.son, Jennings.
   5. OCF Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:02 AM (#1158283)
For what it's worth, I do see Burns as a clearly better offensive player than Schang - OBP heavy, and with significant baserunning value. Not that either one made my top 15 last year.

Simmons is a very easy choice as this year's #1 white player. This week's topic of debate should be whether Stearnes, Suttles, or both should go ahead of him. Chris Cobb - you have the floor.
   6. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:07 AM (#1158300)
Right now it looks like all three will bein my top 5. It is possible that Suttles will fit under Jennings, though unlikely. At the top my prelim is Simmons at #1, for the reason that I don't yet know much about Stearnes or Suttles.

I have caught flak for this before and I do want to say that I am willing to change this. However, I still believe in going with the guys that I do know over the guys that I don't.

Also, unless Cobb's WS tell me differently, Stearnes >Suttles due to position.
   7. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:09 AM (#1158303)
Tentatively, and conservatively...

1. Simmons
2. Stearnes
4. Suttles
13. Dean
17. Averill
24. Berger

Anyone know anything about Newt Allen?
   8. The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:16 AM (#1158315)
I'll post my prelim later, but I just wanted to chime in and agree with EricC that Schang has (in my opinion, of course) been severely underrated by the voters thus far.
   9. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:19 AM (#1158322)
Dizzy Dean.

If you've read the Dean thread there's no need to click on it.
   10. Howie Menckel Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:21 AM (#1158328)
Schang is on my radar as well; not a bad player for a lot of us to take another glance at - which doesn't necessarily lead to a vote, but worth the consideration.


Newt Allen excerpt, more on baseballlibrary....

"For 23 years, Newt Allen was the foundation of the powerhouse Kansas City Monarch teams that won 10 league championships..... Considered the premier second baseman during the formative years of the Negro National League, he made fielding his position an art.... The switch-hitting Allen was a line-drive hitter and a skilled bunter... As Monarch captain, he led his club to the Black World Series in 1924 and 1925..... His best year was 1929, when he hit .330 and led the team with 24 doubles and 23 stolen bases. In 1930 he batted .356."

a lot more on the site, actually, though not extremely detailed in numbers.
   11. The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:26 AM (#1158340)
Plagiarizer.

;)
   12. Mike Webber Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:59 AM (#1158407)
Would it definitely be immoral for me to vote for Willis Hudlin at the bottom of the ballot because he is my best friend's Grand Uncle?

By the way, I don't think Nest Allen was really a switch-hitter. Different sources vary - I asked Buck O'Neil once and he told me that he didn't remember him ever switch hitting. He may have occasionally, but I don't think switch hitter is the most accurate description of him.
   13. The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: February 22, 2005 at 04:15 AM (#1158436)
Willis Hudlin? Whatchoo talkin' bout, Webber?

I think I heard somewhere that Allen stopped switch-hitting at some point in his career. Not an uncommon thing.

It's actually hard to tell sometimes, since info on batting and throwing hands was usually absent from Negro League reporting. People like Larry Lester have often had to go back and figure it out based on photographs and/or interviews.

P.S. Always beware of posts that begin with the phrase "I think I heard somewhere"
   14. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 22, 2005 at 04:47 AM (#1158508)
Would it definitely be immoral for me to vote for Willis Hudlin at the bottom of the ballot because he is my best friend's Grand Uncle?

Immoral? Nah.

Insane? Hell, yeah! :-)
   15. Chris Cobb Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:04 AM (#1158546)
EricC wrote:

Suttles and Stearnes were great hitters for a while, but baseball history is full of players who were great hitters for a while without being HoMers. My number crunching shows that Suttles hit better than Stearnes, and had a better career. Combined with expert consensus, I conclude that Suttles was the outstanding NEL OF born in the 19 aughts.


I just can't match anything that I know about these two players to any of the evidence that you cite to justify ranking Stearnes as if he were nowhere near the player Suttles was. If there is evidence that I'm missing, I'd like to know it, but if I'm not missing something, then I hope you'll give Turkey Stearnes his due by at least giving him the credit you are giving to Mule Suttles. So some comments and questions laying out the issues as I see them:

1) Observation. The description "great hitters for a while" sells both Suttles and Stearnes short, unless by "for a while" you mean 15 years or so, and then the claim that there are lots of players who were great hitters for a while who are not HoMers doesn't make sense. Stearnes and Suttles were both among the top hitters in the Negro Leagues from their debut in 1923 to the late 1930s.

2) Question: As for Suttles being the better hitter than Stearnes, what numbers are you crunching, and how? A quick review of the statistics in MacMillan 10th indicates that Stearnes had the higher career NeL slugging percentage, .638 to .612, without the advantage Suttles had of playing half a dozen seasons in the best hitters' park in the Negro Leagues.

3) Observation: You see Suttles and the premier NeL outfielder of his generation, but Suttles was a first baseman for 13 of his 19 seasons as a regular. Suttles was primarily a first baseman. Stearnes was a centerfielder for 14 of his 18 seasons as a regular and an outfielder for the other four. If you are crediting them as equivalent players defensively, you are all selling Stearnes short.

4) Question: Whe you say "expert consensus," what are you referring to? James ranks Stearnes in his top 100 players all time; Suttles is not so ranked. James also ranks Stearnes as his #1 NeL leftfielder (although he was primarily a centerfielder) ahead of Suttles, who he ranked as his #2 left-fielder (although he was primarily a first baseman). Of the experts surveyed in _Cool Papas and Double Duties_, 15 of 24 named Turkey Stearnes to their all-time all-star team. 9 of 24 named Mule Suttles.
   16. Brent Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:16 AM (#1158568)
James ranks Stearnes in his top 100 players all time; Suttles is not so ranked.

A correction - Stearnes is # 25, Suttles is # 43.
   17. Tiboreau Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:18 AM (#1158573)
James ranks Stearnes in his top 100 players all time; Suttles is not so ranked.

This was posted elsewhere, but I don't think it isn't something that shouldn't be posted again:

25. Turkey Stearnes
43. Mule Suttles
71. Al Simmons

Your point stands--Stearnes is solidly ahead of Suttles--but Suttles himself is halfway up James's top 100 and solidly ahead of Simmons, who is definitely a HoMer IMO. (I'm assuming what you meant by "Suttles is not so ranked" is that he wasn't in the top 100, BTW.)

Other than James's comments, though, I know next to nothing about either player, so I'm looking forward to discussion over the next week--and your wonderful MLEs!
   18. Tiboreau Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:19 AM (#1158574)
That's what I get for tryin' to say too much. . . .
   19. Chris Cobb Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:28 AM (#1158596)
Thanks for the corrections: I was working from memory on that one, and memory is clearly unreliable . . .
   20. DanG Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:41 AM (#1158834)
I posted this in the 1945 ballot thread, but then thought it really belonged in this one.

I'm reminded of some ancient history.

In this project's beginnings, there was discussion about to whom the voting should be open. People came out overwhelmingly in favor of an open electorate; there would be minimal qualifiers and no cutoff of membership.

Should the voting privilege be restricted to an elite few? Or should we maybe tighten up rules as to what passes for a valid ballot? As we near the halfway point in the project, with a gradual addition of new voters, perhaps we should revisit this topic.

Another possible area of discussion is about exactly what we are trying to do here. There are several distinct approaches to ballot construction, some of which we may want to discourage.

The different approaches emphasize different aspects of the candidates. Some of these are: favoring pitchers more; ignoring most pitchers; favoring Negro leaguers; shunting aside most Negro leaguers; favoring 19th century players; extreme timelining against 19th century players; varying discounts for league quality; emphasis on "reality check" or traditional stats; myopic emphasis on an uberstat, usually WARP or win shares...you get the idea.

There is little consensus here as to what is important, that we end up with an ever-increasing number of candidates being named on ballots. Perhaps this is what a certain commenter meant by "scattered". IMO, if a reasoned discussion can come to some conclusions as to what are and what are not valid approaches, it would benefit the project.
   21. EricC Posted: February 22, 2005 at 11:30 AM (#1159061)
Re: Stearnes

4) Question: Whe you say "expert consensus," what are you referring to?

Chris- Thanks to your questions, I looked back over my original notes and found that I have Stearnes' expert opinion rating component implausibly low. I will look again at original sources. I assume that they have Stearnes at a reasonable level, and that I will correct my rating. If he, is fact, as low in the original surveys as I have him marked, then I will provide the information here.
   22. Rusty Priske Posted: February 22, 2005 at 02:37 PM (#1159101)
Prelim

PHoM: Al Simmons and Turkey Stearnes

1. Al Simmons
2. George Van Haltren
3. Eppa Rixey
4. Jake Beckley
5. Mickey Welch
6. Tommy Leach
7. Turkey Stearnes
8. Edd Roush
9. Mule Suttles
10. George Sisler
11. Hugh Duffy
12. Sam Rice
13. Jimmy Ryan
14. Dobie Moore
15. Dick Lundy

16-20. Monroe, Childs, Sewell, Griffith, Powell
21-25. Doyle, Grimes, Mullane, Hooper, Poles
26-30. Streeter, Burns, Cuyler, White, Allen
   23. sunnyday2 Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:15 PM (#1159124)
This is in re. to last night's unfortunate discussion.

First, I do market research for a living and my Ph.D. work was in research methods. And Chris has absolutely nothing to apologize for. People call me up and ask me to do "research," and it means a lot of different things to different people. But the one common denominator, as Chris said, is they have a question and they want it answered.

What people refer to as "research" is really two completely different things, or two components.

1. Collect data, which people take to mean "do research." This might mean going out and doing primary research (a survey, focus groups, whatever) or it might mean doing secondary research (reading through research that was previously published). One might argue whether reading a 1935 newspaper is really primary research, I would say no. Primary research means going to original sources, like the original official scoresheet. But it is perfectly legitimate IMHO to collect data anywhere you can get it, and why not where it is more rather than less accessible.

Sometimes my customers don't actually need me to collect any data at all. By customary language this means "doing research" without actually "doing research."

2. Analysis. What most people forget is that the more important component of a "research project" is the analysis part. Sometimes, like I said, you don't even have to "do research"--that is, collect data. Sometimes all you have to do is analyze information that is already in hand.

But you ALWAYS have to do analysis. Even when the information or data is already in hand, the likelihood that somebody has already done a relevant analysis is virtually nil. The questions are always different. So you always have to do the analysis.

A lot of what goes on here is analysis, not research, to my way of thinking. And that is just fine. It is only smart to do what you have to do, and not go out and reinvent the wheel doing things that don't need to be done.

The quality of research and (especially) analysis here is just fine. No apologies needed to anybody.

That is just MHO, of course.
   24. sunnyday2 Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:21 PM (#1159134)
Part 2. I was struck by jonesy's example of plagiarism, which was that cubbieinexile (or whatever) had posted some info on Grove and Ferrell workloads.

Now, first, to blame HoM as a whole for this is silly.

But second, he-who-must-not-be-named had complained about plagiarism and then jonesy provided the example. If i recall, the post in question was originally posted here at HoM by jonesy. Now, was this jonesy's research or he-who-must-not-be-named? What was the problem? That cubbie plagiarized jonesy's post? Or that jonesy plagiarized he-who's research in the first place?

As john or joe said last night, Ferrell is in our top ten. He could easily be elected some day. Yet we are all stupid because we have not elected him already...in place of Frisch or Goslin or Oscar Charleston, maybe. Sheesh.
   25. sunnyday2 Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:41 PM (#1159152)
Finally this is re. DanG's (and others') comments about our voting being "scatalogical"...er, no, that wasn't it..."scattered," that's it.

Dan and I participated in a project like this a few years ago, and the voting there surely became more widely distributed over time. This is not a surprise. The pool just keeps getting bigger. No way to prevent that. I mean, who is to say that Mike Tiernan isn't just as good a candidate as Wally Berger. And someday, I dunno, Andy Pafko will join the list, then Bobby Bonds, then Dewey Evans, then Luis Rodgriguez, or whomever. You say tomAto, I say tomAHto.

Our very "scattered"-ness is a strength and not a weakness, I think. Sure, guys get elected with fewer and fewer votes. But they get elected from a bigger and bigger pool. They are not getting elected without being held up to the prism of the complete arc of North American baseball history. On balance, I think that's a plus.
   26. andrew siegel Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:48 PM (#1159166)
I consider myself a professional in my chosen fields--Constitutional Law, the history of the American Early Republic, post-conviction remedies for convicted criminals, etc.--and an intelligent, interested amateur in both sabremetrics and baseball history. I have always conceptualized this project as designed for people like me, i.e., intelligent amateurs with a commitment to and the ability to sift through existing evidence of all different stripes and make informed, logical assesments of the relative worth of the various candidates for the HoM.

I occasionally contribute a bit of "research" which is really little more than a homebaked reworking of existing statistics or uber-metrics to answer a particular question. But my real contribution to the project is as one of many smart, dedicated people who use our judgment to methodically sift through the various arguments in favor and against the candidates.

It is my belief that the process of having 40-200 people like myself sifting through the evidence provided by subjective reports, traditional statistics, Clay Davenport, Bill James, Gary A., Dick Thomspon, the Chrises, the I9 project, Riley, and any other sources that come to our attention and then debating our conclusions is an excellent methodology for selecting an HoM. Aggregating preferences of diverse observers of the same data balances out biases, errors, varying assumptions, etc.

I think a lot of the complaints that people (particular outsiders like Dick Thompson) occasionally vent stem from the failure to understand the design of the project. This is a common enterprise of smart amateurs who care a lot about both baseball history and rational discourse. Nothing more and nothing less.
   27. PhillyBooster Posted: February 22, 2005 at 03:55 PM (#1159175)
Since I haven't been on the internet for the past 24 hours, would someone mind filling me in on exactly who Dick Thompson is, and why I should care?
   28. andrew siegel Posted: February 22, 2005 at 04:05 PM (#1159195)
Oh, yeah, a ballot:

(1) Turkey Stearns (new)-- I don't think it is very close. The Negro Leagues produced somewhere between four and severn great hitters (Gibson, Charleston, Suttles, Stearns, probably Torriente, probably Beckwith, maybe Lloyd). Of those eight, only three others match Stearns in longevity and one of those--Suttles--has a lot less defensive value. He's one of the top 50 players of All-Time.

(2) Al Simmons (new)--Underrated by Bill James due to the timeline, he is a full notch (maybe two) better than the Wheat, Clarke, Heilmann, Goslin types who slide into the HoM with little fuss.

(3) Mule Suttles (new)-- Still working on him, but it is hard to imagine him moving much. I don't think he was Stan Musial, but Johnny Mize or Willie McCovey isn't out of the question. If those turn out to be fair comps, he's number 2.

(4) Hughie Jennings (3rd)
(5) Wes Ferrell (6th)
(6) Eppa Rixey (7th)
(7) Hugh Duffy (4th)-- The swarm of OF's now decending on the ballot make the 19th-century OF's look just a little less appealing.
(8) George Van Haltren (5th)--Ditto.
(9) Charley Jones (8th)--Ditto again.
(10) Cupid Childs (9th)
(11) Edd Roush (10th)
(12) Dobie Moore (11th)
(13) John Beckwith (12th)
(14) Earl Averill (new)-- Very similar to Roush in value and played in a better league, but docked a little bit b/c/ there were so many OF's with impressive numbers during his prime.
(15) Burleigh Grimes (13th)

I am a big fan of Wally Berger; he slots in 18th (behind Sewell and Chance).

I thought I would have Dizzy Dean around 75th; when I adjusted his IP totals for era and ran him through my system, he came out a surprisingly strong 28th. I'm going to keep an eye on him.

Newt Allen is a non-starter. Absent further information, he is right on the bubble of the top 100.
   29. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: February 22, 2005 at 04:13 PM (#1159209)
Phillybooster - Dick Thompson is a distinguished and knowlegable (pretend I spelled that right) baseball researcher and the planet's foremost authority on Wes Ferrell. Last night in the 1945 ballot thread he accused me of plagarizing retrosheet and palming it off as my own work. You can go back and read it if you want, but let's get the discussion on '46 going.

Along those lines, I see one of my favorite pitchers is up for election: Oral Hildenbrand. A few years ago I went to retrosheet and calculated Team H% - which is H%=[(H-HR)/(TBF-K-BB-HB-HR)] - for every team retrosheet had TBF info for (almost every team since 1903 except for a little of the early AL).

Those late 1930s St Louis Browns were one of the worst defensive teams ever. I don't remeber what the H%s were for the Indians, but Hildebrand struck me as someone who was royally screwed by his defense.

No, he doesn't deserve anything more than a passing glance, but he is better than his record.
   30. DavidFoss Posted: February 22, 2005 at 04:17 PM (#1159215)
FYI Dick Thompson information

He "wrote the book" on the Ferrell brothers.
   31. PhillyBooster Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:02 PM (#1159292)
Oh.

Moving right along. . . Earl Averill?

Still putting together my prelim, but I don't have Earl on it, and I'm seeing him on a lot of ballots posted here today.

Win Shares:
George van Haltren: 344
Jimmy Ryan: 316
Edd Roush: 314
Hugh Duffy: 295
Earl Averill: 280
Cy Seymour: 272
Roy Thomas: 260

WS/162

Seymour: 28.83
Thomas: 28.63
van Haltren: 28.08
Duffy: 27.51
Averill: 27.17
Roush: 25.86
Ryan: 25.45

WARP-1
van Haltren: 113.9
Ryan: 111.9
Roush: 110
Duffy: 102.8
Seymour: 94
Thomas:91.8
Averill: 91.2

Is Earl even in the Top 5 centerfielders, let alone Top 5 on the ballot?
   32. Chris Cobb Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:17 PM (#1159314)
Phillybooster,

Could you show the career WARP-3 list for these 7 players also? I haven't seen it, but I'd bet dollars to donuts that Averill is #1 on it.

We've got enough new top-ballot candidates that we're not going to be electing Averill this year, or next year, or the year after, but he (aside from the issue of PCL credit) presents a clear test case on how we are going rank 1930s stars who are clearly not inner-circle greats in their own period against similar players from earlier eras.
   33. PhillyBooster Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:42 PM (#1159363)
I listed comparable stats -- none were era adjusted. That adds another element. But I wasn't trying to cherry pick. Here is WARP-3. He comes in third, by a 0.1 inch nose.

So, as I am not up on my slang, do I get a dollar or a donut?

WARP-3
Ryan: 80.0
van Haltren: 79.1
Averill: 77.2
Roush: 77.1
Duffy: 74.1
Thomas: 69.4
Seymour: 68.4
   34. Chris Cobb Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:56 PM (#1159400)
Phillybooster,

Thanks! I was not thinking you were cherry-picking, but I thought that W3 would be relevant to seeing why folks are ranking Averill as they are.

Well, Averill is not privileged by W3 quite as much as I thought he'd be.

You get the dollar, I think. If I'm up on my slang, I was emphasizing my confidence by saying that I'd stack the odds against myself, being willing to wager dollars against donuts in this instance. If you like donuts, you can use the dollar to buy several . . .
   35. karlmagnus Posted: February 22, 2005 at 05:57 PM (#1159402)
What about Beckley?
   36. PhillyBooster Posted: February 22, 2005 at 06:04 PM (#1159426)
If he wants, Beckley can have one of my donuts that I'm going to buy with Chris's dollar.
   37. Rorschach Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:26 PM (#1159550)
New voter thinking of joining in the fun soon, if I can get the time to compile together the stats of all these players.

Beckley's career WARP3 is 85.2, so it's well above the rest.

Averill doesn't have the huge career value of a Beckley or Van Haltren, and he doesn't have a really monster peak, but I think the mix between a very good peak and a very good career is what most people find appealing.
   38. Daryn Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:36 PM (#1159566)
It makes no sense, Matt, for you to buy donuts with the dollars you just won. You were wagering donuts thereby risking losing them -- it seems unlikely that you want more donuts. If that were the case, you should have bet donuts for donuts in the first place. Just saying.
   39. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:43 PM (#1159577)
Looking forward to your ballot, Rorschach!

BTW, Berger just misses my ballot. I'm still working on Averill.
   40. ronw Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:46 PM (#1159582)
That other Hall in Cooperstown recently showed some diversion from our Hall.

Before, they had elected only one player we had not elected (not counting managers or pioneers like McGraw and Cummings) - George Sisler.

Now, they have also elected:

Roger Bresnahan
Hugh Duffy
Hughie Jennings - partly as a manager

and Wilbert Robinson as a manager.

Just elected, and also members of our HOM are:

Fred Clarke
Dan Brouthers
Jimmy Collins
Ed Delahanty
King Kelly
Jim O'Rourke

They're starting to be different, but not too much, as Sisler, Jennings, Duffy and Bresnahan all receive some support from us. Unless they do something wild in 1946, such as elect guys like Happy Jack Chesbro or Tommy McCarthy, we probably won't be too different from them when all is said and done.
   41. PhillyBooster Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:49 PM (#1159590)
It makes no sense, Matt, for you to buy donuts with the dollars you just won. You were wagering donuts thereby risking losing them -- it seems unlikely that you want more donuts. If that were the case, you should have bet donuts for donuts in the first place. Just saying.

Well, compiling the WARP-3 numbers made me hungry, and while I was posting, I ate the donuts. If I had lost, I would have had to go buy more donuts anyway.

Also, when did they stop being "doughnuts"?
   42. PhillyBooster Posted: February 22, 2005 at 07:58 PM (#1159616)
I mean, they are made out of "dough". They're not made out of "nuts." It seems like if you're going to change part of it, it should be the ingredient that's not actually in the food. "Doughnaughts", maybe. It just seems like the whole thing is going backwards.

And while we're at it, can someone distinguish "kreme", "creme" and "cream" for me?

Final Exam:

Correct as appropriate: "If I donut bring a bavarian creme doughnaught home from the Krispy Kreme tonite, my wife will cream me!"
   43. DavidFoss Posted: February 22, 2005 at 08:08 PM (#1159645)
Tee hee...

yeah... a quick web search shows that 'doughnut' was coined by Washington Irving in 1809. Looks like they didn't add the hole until the 1840s, though. 'Donut' is just a variant that is easier to spell. I can't seem to find where that one started, though.

Webster still lists 'doughnut' as the real word and 'donut' as the variant for now. I could see those two trading places at some point, though.

Ironically, Krispy Kreme still uses the more formal 'doughnut' spelling. :-)
   44. Buddha Posted: February 22, 2005 at 08:50 PM (#1159751)
This should be an interesting election. I forsee some serious divisions on the Stearns/Suttles/Simmons front between the NLer contingent and the MLer contingent.

I haven't decided yet but can't see some combination at the top that isn't Simmons/Stearns in some fashion.
   45. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: February 22, 2005 at 09:17 PM (#1159792)
Averill does have a nice peak and prime in WARP3. I don't have the time righ tnow to run the numbers but take a look. That WARP3 in peak and prime is enough to make him a ballot contender for me. If not, he would probably be inthe 20-25 range below Edd Roush and Pete Browning.
   46. Daryn Posted: February 22, 2005 at 09:59 PM (#1159886)
Dean came within 14 innings of not qualifying for the Hall of Fame. Was the Hall of Fame big enough by 1940 that it caused him to pitch that last ineffective year to qualify? He is lucky he had that start as a 20 year old, or his Hall of Fame qualification would be depending on the one inning in 1941 and the 4 innings in '47.

Anyway, he's not near my ballot, but I expect to see him right next to Jennings on many ballots, whether that is off or on.
   47. jhwinfrey Posted: February 22, 2005 at 11:23 PM (#1160053)
1946 Preliminary Ballot

1. Turkey Stearnes
2. Al Simmons--I see a clear top two here. I think Simmons is better than most are giving him credit for. And Stearnes is even better.

3. Jake Beckley
4. Mickey Welch
5. Eppa Rixey
6. Burleigh Grimes--My top 4 holdovers get bumped down. With 15 strong newcomers spread over the next 6 ballots, I don't see much hope for these guys in the near future...

7. Mule Suttles
8. John Beckwith--two different types of hitters, but I think they belong together.

9. Tommy Leach
10. Dick Lundy
11. Carl Mays
12. Dick Redding
13. Jose Mendez
14. Ben Taylor--Taylor once ranked 3rd on my ballot. Comparisons with the recently arrived negro leaguers have hurt him quite a bit.
15. Jim McCormick

Other newcomers:
22. Earl Averill--A good hitter, but too short of a career to make my ballot.
36. Newt Allen--I have him ranked just behind Bill Monroe. A long career and a solid glove, but not a great hitter.
65. Wally Berger--Similar to Averill, not a great enough hitter or good enough fielder to overcome the brevity of his career. I think players who stick around longer are more valuable than these guys.
Dizzy Dean? Not even close to my top 100, and well below Hughie Jennings!
   48. EricC Posted: February 23, 2005 at 12:52 AM (#1160202)
Revised 1946 prelim.

1. Al Simmons
2. Wally Schang
3. Joe Sewell
4. Earl Averill
5. Turkey Stearnes

Conclusion: I blew it in post #2 above. I'm not convinced that I would rate Stearnes above Suttles if full information were available. However, with Suttles having more seasons as a 1B than an OF, and with the information that Stearnes was a CF at least part-time, I am now aware that Stearnes played a more demanding defensive position, on average. The problem of how to reconcile fair representation of NELers across eras with the fact that the HoF and experts' lists are so dominated by players from one single decade- an issue that will become clear over the next few years- makes me hold something in reserve.

By the way, special thanks to Chris Cobb for his professionalism in responding to posts that he disagrees with.

6. Sam Rice
7. Roger Bresnahan
8. Wes Ferrell
9. Jose Mendez
10. Mule Suttles
11. Eppa Rixey
12. Harry Hooper
13. Waite Hoyt
14. Pie Traynor
15. Heinie Manush

Newt Allen: Like the career length, but not enough to compel me to put him in serious contention. I have him in Judy Johnson territory. It would be nice to have a full sabermetric statistical encyclopedia of NEL players to determine if there are any long-career defensive players who stood out more than we are aware of.
   49. KJOK Posted: February 23, 2005 at 01:15 AM (#1160240)
NEWBIE EVALUATION:

Turkey Stearnes, CF/LF - Around #2 on ballot, just behind Beckwith.

Al Simmons, LF/CF - Around #3 on ballot, right behind Stearnes.

Mule Suttles, 1B/LF - #13 most likely, just behind Ben Taylor, who, when considering era and park, may be very similar offensively to Suttles with better defense.

Earl Averill, CF - Slightly better player than Van Haltren and Browning. Battling Tony Lazzeri for #15 spot on ballot.

Newt Allen, 2B - Don't think he was as good as Monroe, so slotting behind Monroe, Childs and Lazzeri for now.

Dizzy Dean, P - Not as good as Joss, and Joss is not on my ballot, so Ol' Diz will probably never be seen on my ballot....
   50. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: February 23, 2005 at 02:20 AM (#1160332)
Before I post a preliminary ballot, I'd like to say one thing about the Dick Thompson controversy. And that is that I've learned more through HOM discussions about baseball history, analysis, research, and gentlemanly debate than I could have ever hoped for. The professionalism, good humor, candor, and hard work that everyone puts in here inspires me to then put in my own hard work and to try to improve on what little contribution I am able to make.

This group does a great job of self-policing without holding grudges. People can make mistakes, be held accountable, and then continue to contribute with the understanding that they will try better next time and won't be stigmatized in a Thompsonesque kind of way. Hey, call me a Boy Scout or a jingoist for being rah-rah about the HOM, but frankly, I'm proud of my association with this project and of its work, no matter what Dick "Hunter S." Thompson and his Gonzo-Journalism version of HOM-posting says. Frankly, I think he owes the HOM an apology for his ill-considered, elitist-toned, and offensive post. Needless to say, he's not making my pHOM this year.

OK, my spleen is vented, so on with my regularly scheduled prelim ballot...

1. Al Simmons
2. Turkey Stearns (this is based purely on reputation. If any WS estimates come forth that suggest TS belongs ahead of AS, I won't be averse to moving him up).
3. Mule Suttles (very preliminary; I'm more unsettled about him than about Stearnes. Is he better than Beckwith? Then this is probably where he'll end up. If not... probably around 8th).
4. GVH
5. Duffy
6. Rixey
7. Beckwith
8. Burns
9. Mendez
10. Poles
11. Roush
12. Leach
13. Jennings
14. Moore
15. Ferrell...(Averill could end up here depending on where I come down on the minor league credit question)

Newt Allen: Hard to say at this point, so far I'm thinking he's probably somewhere in the Tinker-to-Evers-to-Bancroft-to-Traynor-to... area, though I'm hardly certain.

Wally Berger is a favorite of mine for being so good for such a bad 1935 team. I think Albert Belle is the perfect statistical comparison, and I'm not so sure Albert will ever make my pHOM due to his short career.

And then there's Dean. He's off my ballot, and could never place higher than Jennings even if he were to appear on it. I've just got to figure out for myself whether 1967 mostly starter-leverage innings are enough. This will be especially important once guys like Gossage come around.
   51. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 23, 2005 at 02:42 AM (#1160382)
1. Al Simmons
2. Turkey Stearns (this is based purely on reputation. If any WS estimates come forth that suggest TS belongs ahead of AS, I won't be averse to moving him up).


That's about where I am with those two guys. Subject to change with MLEs.

3. Mule Suttles (very preliminary; I'm more unsettled about him than about Stearnes. Is he better than Beckwith? Then this is probably where he'll end up. If not... probably around 8th).

At this point, I'll probably have Beckwith at #3 and Suttles at #4, but again this is subject to change.
   52. jimd Posted: February 23, 2005 at 02:51 AM (#1160405)
Dean came within 14 innings of not qualifying for the Hall of Fame. Was the Hall of Fame big enough by 1940 that it caused him to pitch that last ineffective year to qualify?

IIRC, there were no specific qualifying standards for the HOF at that time. Just send in up to 10 names; if enough voters send in the same name, he's in. Stuff like the 5 year waiting time and 10 years minimum service would be added later, along with a printed ballot listing those eligible.
   53. Cblau Posted: February 23, 2005 at 04:39 AM (#1160597)
New candidate Pepper Martin holds one of the most obscure records imaginable. In 1930, he pinchran 5 times, and scored 5 runs. (Co-holds it, actually.)
   54. David C. Jones Posted: February 23, 2005 at 05:40 AM (#1160650)
IMO, taking Joe Sewell over Turkey Stearnes is like taking Bobby Wallace over Mel Ott. Except that Turkey might have been better than Ott.
   55. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: February 23, 2005 at 05:53 AM (#1160669)
Along those lines, I see one of my favorite pitchers is up for election: Oral Hildenbrand. A few years ago I went to retrosheet and calculated Team H% - which is H%=[(H-HR)/(TBF-K-BB-HB-HR)] - for every team retrosheet had TBF info for (almost every team since 1903 except for a little of the early AL).

Those late 1930s St Louis Browns were one of the worst defensive teams ever. I don't remeber what the H%s were for the Indians, but Hildebrand struck me as someone who was royally screwed by his defense.


I had to look it up. They Browns were dead last in H% in the AL for four straight years (1936-9) and either seventh or eighth every year but one from 1935-43 (and in that other year they were sixth).

In Oral's biggest year with the club, 1938, they had a team H% of .320, which was the worst mark in AL history until the 1997 A's scored a .324. Yea, era and park play factors, but it's the worst freakin' score in a period of 90+ years in the AL! (at any rate, their park factors were rather modest that year). . . . Makes me wonder just how good Bobo was.
   56. Yoenis Cespedes, Baseball Savant Posted: February 23, 2005 at 09:14 AM (#1160818)
It's been dozens of years since I've posted a ballot. I've been too busy with school, work and other things to take the time and due diligence to hair-split a few dozen marginal candidates. But now I'm able to jump into the fray now that there are plenty of strong candidates on the ballot. I am a peak/prime voter who uses adjusted Win Shares for all players and ERA+ for pitchers. My timeline threatens pretty much all of the remaining 19th-century candidates. I'll leave it to the HOM veterans to guess who I am.

1. Turkey Stearnes - Was 2nd on my ballot until I saw he was primarily a center fielder. Amazing player.
2. Al Simmons - Ninth all-time among major-league left fielders, ahead of Jesse Burkett and behind Tim Raines.
3. Dobie Moore - Tremendous, tremendous player. More career value than I thought and his peak value places him light-years ahead of Sewell. Possibly one of the ten greatest shortstops ever.
4. Dick Lundy - A prime/career candidate in the Davis/Dahlen/Luke Appling class of shortstops.
5. Buzz Arlett - In awe of Brent's yeoman work on Arlett. More confident of his "superstar" status than I am for guys like George Sisler and George Van Haltren.
6. John Beckwith - Tremendous hitter. Probably the player who has benefitted the most from the HOM process, other than Dickey Pearce. May move him ahead of Arlett.
7. Mule Suttles - The best hitter on this ballot, but too many holes in his game to fare better against stiff competition.
8. Hughie Jennings - The Sandy Koufax of infielders. Fourth-best peak of all-time among major-league shortstops, behind Honus Wagner, Slappy McBluelips and Arky Vaughan.
9. Rube Waddell - When runs were scarce and a ball in play could lead to a game-deciding error, having a pitcher who could blow 'em away was an advantage.
10. Wes Ferrell - I'll admit to having a hell of a time comparing pitchers against each other. Will look at him some more, but this reflects my acceptance of where the consensus ranks him, at least for now.
11. Spottswood Poles - Close to the rest of the center fielder glut and gets the benefit of the doubt for now.
12. Addie Joss - Very strong peak. The phrase "cut down in the middle of his prime" was made for him.
13. Clark Griffth - One-league era and peak value get him the edge over Rixey.
14. Eppa Rixey - 4500 innings of 115 ERA+ is just more #### valuable than the rest of the field.
15. Dizzy Dean - It takes every ounce of his outstanding peak for him to get on my ballot. Much like the NCAA Tournament, Dean's appearance will likely be one-and-done.

Consensus top 10 and other players
Joe Sewell - Solid player, but being in the Long/Bancroft range isn't enough to make a loaded ballot.
George Van Haltren - Nice prime, but not enough to make up for his lack of peak, which lags behind Averill and Roush.
George Sisler - Decent peak, but his performance after 1923 makes the whole body of work underwhelming.
Earl Averill and Edd Roush - Both fine players. I'd rank them in this order, too. Averill's peak and prime value is pretty much a dead ringer for Bernie Williams (which is actually a good thing). Roush's closest comp for career value is Cesar Cedeno.
Jake Beckley - Hopefully, I'll never have to give an explaniation for him ever again.
   57. Chris Cobb Posted: February 23, 2005 at 03:32 PM (#1160933)
Flaxseed,

Welcome back, whoever you are!

You say in your ballot preamble, My timeline threatens pretty much all of the remaining 19th-century candidates. How and why do you timeline? Obviously, your timeline is not so steep that 19th-century players are totally out of the running, as Jennings and Griffith on your ballot. How is your timeline affecting the players from the 1900-1920 vs. players from 1920 on?
   58. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 23, 2005 at 03:44 PM (#1160950)
Welcome back, whoever you are!

Dickey Pearce fans are always welcomed back with open arms! ;-)
   59. David C. Jones Posted: February 23, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1161179)
My preliminary ballot. I'm out of town this week and don't have access to all my material, so I'm pretty much going on intuition at the moment, which is why this is only a prelim. ballot. I'm also on somebody else's computer so I'm just going to give the list, and follow with explanations later in the week. Once again, the best candidates in my eyes are still from the Negro Leagues.

1. Turkey Stearnes
2. Mule Suttles
3. Al Simmons
4. John Beckwith
5. Dick Lundy
6. Spotswood Poles
7. Jose Mendez
8. Dick Redding
9. Edd Roush
10. Bill Monroe
11. Earl Averill
12. Gavvy Cravath
13. Dizzy Dean
14. Rube Waddell
15. George Sisler


Moving down: Rube Waddell (I calculate that by normalizing his ER % to the levels of the teams he played for, his career ERA+ should have been 127, not 134. Oliver Marcelle, Judy Johnson....right now they are in the 18-25 range on my ballot.

Just missing my ballot this time around: Wes Ferrell, Eddie Cicotte, Addie Joss, Wally Schang.
   60. Daryn Posted: February 23, 2005 at 06:52 PM (#1161367)
My entire 58 person consideration set on display.

35 hitters, 23 pitchers.
11 blackballers.
2 minor leaguers.
2 catchers.
Almost an even split between infielders and outfielders.


Highest rated player (by the electorate) not in my consideration set: Charlie Jones, then Burns and McGraw.


1. Al Simmons – a little uncomfortable with him ahead of Stearnes, but the devil you know.

2. Turkey Stearnes – I could have him first or third, so second seems okay. It is only these top-3 that I really am sure are Hall of Merit-orious.

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

5. 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.

6. Eppa Rixey
7. Burleigh Grimes – as a career voter, I have difficulty seeing the vast difference others see between these two candidates. There is not much of a spread between here and Ferrell, a five person group of whiteball pitchers that includes Waddell and Griffith, the latter of whom I am souring on.

8. Dick Redding – probably the 5th or 6th best blackball pitcher of all-time (behind, at least, Williams and Paige and likely behind Rube Foster, Rogan and Bill Foster), and that is good enough for me.

9. 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.

10. Sam Rice – close to Beckley – I’ve dropped him after five years of insisting that he was equal to Beckley and Sisler. I took another look at his OPS+ and some traditional stats and feel comfortable with him here.

11. Mule Suttles – I can’t really peg him. He is somewhere between Stearnes and Monroe. I almost put him right behind Beckwith and I almost put him right behind Stearnes. That’s a 15 spot swing. May change for final ballot.

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). My personal, in/out line is here.

13. Clark Griffith – 921 similarity score with mcginnity, who was 1st on my ballot when elected. He is barely better than Ferrell, Hoyt (who I am surprised is not making any ballots), Mendez, Joss, Dean, Luque, Pennock, Quinn, McCormick, Cicotte, Willis, Bender, Mays, Cooper, Shocker, Mullane and Mullin. I have Ferrell next in line and he may move up – I like hitting pitchers, dislike the unbalance created by extreme advocacy.

14. 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.

15. Joe Sewell – I’m assuming he was pretty good on defense. I don’t see him as a HoMer though. Back on the ballot. No throwing infielders in my top-14, then 5 straight.

16. Tommy Leach – 300+ WS has to mean something.

17. Pie Traynor -- just behind Leach. I think he would have been a multiple time all-star.

18. Beckwith – I’m assuming he was pretty bad on defence. The Beckwith thread is funny – Gadfly has him hitting .400 with 40HRs per year and Cobb has him at 297 career WS. I’m going with 95% of Cobb’s estimate. I like him better than Monroe and Moore I’m pretty sure he’s not Hornsby.

19. 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.

20. Wes Ferrell

21. Jose Mendez – somewhere between here and Waddell seems about right. Looks like he was the 7th best blackball pitcher. I could see him in my theoretical PHOM one day.

22. Addie Joss – I don’t like short careers much, but I cannot ignore the second best all-time ERA, the 12th best ERA+ and the nice winning percentage. Could be below Duffy. Nine pitchers in my top 22.

23. Schang – I’d like more catchers in the HoM, but this isn’t a cocktail party.

24. Dizzy Dean

25. Hack Wilson – all peak, no career. Lip Pike lite.

26. Dick Lundy
27. Judy Johnson– somewhere behind Traynor and Beckwith seems about right.

28 to 34 – Outfield glut.

·George Van Haltren – 40 wins, 2500 hits, never dominated. Pretty good adjusted win shares.
·Earl Averill
·Buzz Arlett – can 350+ WS be a correct translation? Like GVH, he pitched some too.
·Spotswood Poles – Van Haltren seems like a good comp.
·Edd Roush – little difference between Averill, Buzz, GVH, Poles, Roush, Ryan and Duffy, except the era and the contexts. Could rethink any of these guys upwards, but still probably won’t make the ballot until the 60s.
·Jimmy Ryan – 2500 hits, good speed, lots of runs.
·Hugh Duffy – 10 strong seasons, good black ink.

35 and 36. Veach and Hooper – I don’t think they will make my ballot. But if one of them does I may defer to Hooper’s 321 Win Shares and 2500 hits.

37. Kiki Cuyler

38. Jennings – he’d be lower for me if you guys weren’t all so sure he was great.

39 to 42. Maranville, Childs, Taylor, Moore

43. 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.

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

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

Somewhere between 25 and 58. Hoyt, Luque, Pennock, Quinn, McCormick, Cicotte, Willis, Bender, Mays, Cooper, Shocker, Mullane and Mullin -- pitcher glut; any of these guys could make my ballot if it ever has fewer than 4 pitchers on it; not that I have an actual quota.
   61. Rorschach Posted: February 23, 2005 at 07:57 PM (#1161513)
This is my first ballot and it's extremely preliminary. Just throwing it out there so you guys can find some inconsistencies (ie, how can you have X on your ballot and not Y; how can X be so high while the similar/better player Y is so low), etc. Still having trouble sorting through 50+ years of baseball history to rank the top 15 best unelected, but this is where I am at right now, and I thought I'd throw it out to you guys to see where you think it might go...

1. Turkey Stearnes
2. Al Simmons
Very easy 1-2 for me, but could flip around to the other order easily...
3. Mickey Welch
Love his career W/L record, his record against other HOM'ers, and 1885 looks like a hell of a year to me despite the UER and the DERA.
4. Wally Schang
Long career for a catcher with a consistently high level of offense. Seems to be to be pretty clearly the best prewar catcher among non inner circle HOM'ers
5. Mule Suttles
Very unsure where to place him, slotted him here for now.
6. Wes Ferrell
WARP3 absolutely loves his peak, WS likes it too. It's amazing how much you have to adjust this guy's raw numbers for hitting, league, and ballparks.
7. Joe Sewell
Very good all-around player, who basically gave his teams an extra spot in the lineup by providing above average hitting during a terrible time for shortstop offense. Career WARP3 of 87.1 is very nice.
8. John Beckwith
Very nice hitter, but still confused by the opinion of the experts on this guy. I'll have to sift my way through the monster Beckwith thread before I submit my final ballot, and that may affect his ranking.
9. Earl Averill
Looks to me to have a very nice prime, and good career value.
10. Jake Beckley
Despite the lack of peak, he had a very valuable career.
11. Cupid Childs
I think WARP3 docks 19th century players too harshly, so I give them a little bump up. On first glance though, he seems to be by far the best 2B of his time.
12. Eppa Rixey
The Jake Beckley of hitters, never the best in the league, but an incredibly valuable career by showing an ability to consistently go out and have a 20 WS season or so for a long period of time.
13. Dick Lundy
Appears to be a good hitter with excellent defense, and is highly regarded by knowledgeable NL experts
14. Jose Mendez
Nice peak, seems to be the best NL pitcher not yet enshrined
15. Edd Roush
His peak/prime looks pretty bad by WARP3, but pretty good by WS...both show him to have good career value. That's good enough for a down ballot spot for me.

OFF:
Roger Bresnahan I'm still trying to work through how I'm gonna reconcile a catcher bonus with all the years he spent as catcher part time. Not sure if he'll eventually make the ballot.
Burleigh Grimes - I like his record, and he seems to have had poor defensive support, but can't quite get over the career ERA+, could be convinced of his worth though.
GVH, Poles, Duffy, etc. - The outfield glut does not impress me very much.
Rube Waddell - nice peak, still not sure how much credit to give the strikeouts
Clark Griffith looks like a serious ballot contender who I will need to give more consideration to.
George Sisler doesn't seem to have enough career or peak.
Vic Willis, Ed Konetchy, Urban Shocker, Pie Traynor - these 4 players are ranked low by consensus but seemed fairly impressive to me at first glance and will get more consideration
   62. DanG Posted: February 23, 2005 at 08:36 PM (#1161574)
Still having trouble sorting through 50+ years of baseball history

Just a gentle reminder. I think you should think in terms of 70+ years. Stars of the 1870's like Charley Jones, Tommy Bond, Tom York, John Clapp and Levi Meyerle are still on the board, along with many other good candidates retiring more than 50 years ago (Browning, Williamson, Dunlap, McCormick, Mullane, etc).
   63. andrew siegel Posted: February 23, 2005 at 10:08 PM (#1161809)
I'm not accusing anyone of anything, but . . .

if Turkey Stearns had never been born, I have a sneaking suspicion that most battles would rank Simmons and Suttles one-two in some order.

Don't downgrade Suttles just b/c/ he had the misfortune to come on the ballot with an even-better Negro League OF.
   64. The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: February 23, 2005 at 10:12 PM (#1161819)
I think that's a very good point, andrew. Some people tend to "quota" their ballots, and having two Negro League OF in the top 3 goes against the grain.
   65. andrew siegel Posted: February 23, 2005 at 10:17 PM (#1161837)
Of course my posts would be more persuasive if I didn't confuse "ballots" and "battles." Ah, well . . .
   66. Chris Cobb Posted: February 23, 2005 at 10:53 PM (#1161912)
It's possible folks are also weighing the relative merits of Suttles and Beckwith, who is the top returning candidate. Despite Suttles' ranking above Simmons by James, I am doubtful that he was better than Simmons and I'm not sure he was better than Beckwith. He has career length on Beckwith for sure, but I don't know that he has the better peak. Despite Beckwith's defensive reputation, he was clearly more valuable defensively than Suttles, who had a poor defensive reputation at low-defense positions. Beckwith may have been a better all-around hitter than Suttles was.

I wholly agree with Andrew's argument against using an NeL quota to downgrade Suttles, but without a quota, but I don't think Suttles' case for a top 3 slot is clear yet. If it becomes clear, I surely will put him there.

And then, of course, Clark Griffith and Eppa Rixey are no slouches either . . .
   67. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: February 23, 2005 at 11:01 PM (#1161929)
Just a stray thought. This year's crop must be among the most interestingly named first-time candidate groups we've had:

There's The Consonance Quartet (well, OK, it's a Consonance Trio Plus One Assonant Guy...):
=============
Dewey Creacy
Dizzy Dean
Red Kress
Pepper Martin

The Three-Aitches
================
Oral Hildebrand
Willis Hudlin
Bill Holland

The Barn Door Duo
==================
Turkey Stearnes
Mule Suttles

The Pondfielders
===============
Newt Allen
Frog Redus

And Two Guys With Great Names
================
Tex Carleton
Zeke Bonura

And that's before you ever get to the Three-Letter Guys: Syl Johnson, and Lyn Lary.

Also worth noting, poor GVH isn't looking to well, and I've heard from a VERY reliable, you might say prescient, source that his death is imminent. Induct him now so he can bask in HOMdom in his final days!...
   68. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: February 23, 2005 at 11:46 PM (#1162026)
Al Simmons, much like Max Carey, has a very interesting 'real' name as well,

Aloisius Sizmanski I believe.

I did that from memory so if I am wrong, please correct me (...Eric...).
   69. jingoist Posted: February 24, 2005 at 12:23 AM (#1162066)
Dr. Chaleeko: since my handle is jingoist, I'll handle the flag-waving and nationalistic chest-thumping.
As a long-time observer of Primer/BTF/HoM threads but a very infrequent poster, I thought it time to weigh in again.
I continue to applaud your combined efforts; it's truly enjoyable watching this collective effort take shape and to observe the aspect of self-regulation that takes place by the various members. You are a fine group of guys (and the occasional gal) who would undoubtedly be welcome company on a cold winters night over a pint or two.
That said I want to ask why Sisler and Cuyler get so little respect from the HoM crowd.
Could it be because by only analyzing raw statistics and never actually watching them play the minds eye is not influenced by their actual speed, fielding feats, base running derring do, etc?

I know both Sisler and Cuyler were very highly thought of by their contemporaries and fans who watched them play. Growing up in Pittsburgh in the 1950's, I recall fans and sportcasters alike who felt Kiki was a non-pareil fielder/base runner; who remembered that Pie Trainor was clearly thought of as the best 3B-man of his time.
Of course those observations were made by old men viewing their memories through rose-colored lenses, but they actually saw these guys play as well as read rudimentary statistics.

I'm curious if posters think that some of these old players got into the HoF because their contemporaries played with/against them and compared their play to the level of existing HopF members? And if so is this a valuable piece of data that is missing when taking a purely analytical view of statistics?

Thanks and good luck with your adventure; I can hardly wait until the 50's and 60's come along 'casue I got to see a lot of those guys play and my minds eye is still quite sharp as to how wonderful the Mays, Mantles, Robinsons, and Clemente's were.
   70. The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: February 24, 2005 at 12:28 AM (#1162073)
I've always seen Simmons' name as Aloysius Szymanski, but BB-Ref has something different. (Aloys Szymanski). Carey, I believe, was Maximilian Carnarius.

Points for whoever can identify the more well-known monikers of Archibald Leach, Emmanuel Goldenberg, and Issur Danielovich.

I can't wait until the 1970s, when we peak voters will be arguing the merits of Sanford Braun...
   71. DavidFoss Posted: February 24, 2005 at 12:42 AM (#1162096)
Archibald Leach

This is Cary Grant, I believe. One of the bigger stars in Hollywood "right now" actually.

BB-Ref is listing:

Al Simmons
Aloysius Harry Simmons (Bucketfoot Al)
born Aloys Szymanski

Looks like someone found a birth certificate and discovered it had a truncated name in it.

There are still many Szymanski's in the upper midwest. I never made the connection between that name and Al Simmons until recently.
   72. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 24, 2005 at 12:48 AM (#1162103)
Emmanuel Goldenberg, and Issur Danielovich.

I may not be Spartacus, say, but I know those actors that you're talkin' about, say?
   73. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 24, 2005 at 12:53 AM (#1162113)
Prelim (almost have the new system implemented):

1) Al Simmons
2) Turkey Stearnes
3) John Beckwith
4) Mule Suttles
5) Roger Bresnahan
6) Cupid Childs
7) Hugh Duffy
8) George Van Haltren
9) Jake Beckley
10) Wally Schang
11) Pie Traynor
12) Burleigh Grimes
13) Eppa Rixey
14) Mickey Welch
15) Frank Chance

16) Charley Jones
17) Tony Mullane
18) Ed Konetchy
19) Vic Willis
20) Tom York
   74. OCF Posted: February 24, 2005 at 12:59 AM (#1162122)
The basic problem for the all-time Polish-American baseball team is this, even though we started their HoM representation with a pitcher: what are you going to do with all of those left fielders?
   75. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 24, 2005 at 01:05 AM (#1162130)
That said I want to ask why Sisler and Cuyler get so little respect from the HoM crowd.
Could it be because by only analyzing raw statistics and never actually watching them play the minds eye is not influenced by their actual speed, fielding feats, base running derring do, etc?


Let me start with Sisler first:

There are two Sislers: the first was a terrific player from 1915-1922. Then he had a severe sinus problem that damaged his eyesight. This leads us to the second Sisler: a mediocre (at best)offensive and defensive player.

If you are voting strictly on peak, Sisler is a HoMer. The problem is that the majority of us need more bulk from his career numbers. Those 1924-30 numbers help him as much as Ernie Banks' first base years help him - they don't.

As for Cuyler, he was a terrific player, but the real outfielders from the twenties were named Ruth, Charleston, Heilmann and Simmons. We can't elect them all.
   76. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 24, 2005 at 01:10 AM (#1162138)
I'm curious if posters think that some of these old players got into the HoF because their contemporaries played with/against them and compared their play to the level of existing HopF members?

A lot of the problem was just plain cronyism. Frankie Frisch is the poster boy (though he certainly wasn't the only one) for opening the door for old teammates while leaving players outside who were head and shoulders better than the Haines, Hafeys and Kellys.
   77. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: February 24, 2005 at 03:29 AM (#1162336)
Regarding OCF's All-Polish Team...

Here's a first crack at it off the top of my head. I know I'm missing some obvious ones, anyone got suggestions?

C ????
1B Kluzewski
2B Mazeroski
3B Kurowski
SS Pesky???
RF Musial
CF Simmons
LF Yaz

p P Niekro (IIRC)
P S Coveleski
P H Coveleski
P Borowski
P J Niekro (IIRC)
P Drabowsky
P Peranoski
P Narleski

Not a bad squad. Anyone know a good Polish catcher?
   78. OCF Posted: February 24, 2005 at 03:52 AM (#1162370)
I think Pesky may have been Russian (or Ukrainian, or something like that) rather than Polish.
   79. PhillyBooster Posted: February 24, 2005 at 03:54 AM (#1162376)
I don't know about "good", but Joe Glenn (Guzensky) is the answer to several trivia questions. Glenn caught Babe Ruth's final inning pitched for the Yankees in 1933, and Ted Williams's only innings pitched for the Red Sox in 1940.
   80. jimd Posted: February 24, 2005 at 04:07 AM (#1162395)
John Michael Paveskovich is of Croatian descent.
   81. PhillyBooster Posted: February 24, 2005 at 04:07 AM (#1162397)
A better catcher is Polish Phillie Stan Lopata.

And try Tony Kubek for shortstop.

You can also improve your pitching staff with Frank Tanana, Eddie Lopat (Edmund Walter Lopatynski), and Steve Gromek.

Alan Trammell and Greg Luzinski can be reserves, too.
   82. Kelly in SD Posted: February 24, 2005 at 10:02 AM (#1163102)
Not sure where to post this, but this seems as good a place as any. I was in Half-Price Books in the Capitol Hill area of Seattle over the weekend and picked up several steals. Among them was Marshall Wright's National Association of Base Ball Players, 1857-1870. I think they had about 4 more copies.
This was the best audience I could think of to let know about the deal. I know we are finished with this era of baseball in terms of candidates, but I thought someone might be interested.
Also, they had several copies of the first 2 volumes of Dean Sullivan's Documentary History of Baseball, Early Innings (1825-1908) and Middle Innings which goes to the middle of the 20th century.
No, I don't work there and I don't get a comission. :)
   83. Howie Menckel Posted: February 24, 2005 at 01:08 PM (#1163137)
Jingoist:
I think, with zero evidence, that Sisler's vote total would be a little better if he had never been able to return to duty after 1922. That would make him more of an emotional, all-peak pick. Still not quite Flick, of course, but damn good. Looking at an entire second half of mediocrity not only doesn't help him, it might even hurt.
But obviously, that's just utter speculation.

Cuyler in a different era and year of retirement would have gotten more votes, but I can't say that he belongs in the HOM. It's like how every columnist in a smaller market keeps ranting for 'their local guys' for the HOF every year. We can't fit all of them.

Glad you're enjoying the voting and jabbering!
   84. EricC Posted: February 24, 2005 at 01:53 PM (#1163156)
Could it be because by only analyzing raw statistics and never actually watching them play the minds eye is not influenced by their actual speed, fielding feats, base running derring do, etc?

I wonder what the HoF would look like if no individual player statistics were kept, and voting was only based on observation. I haven't the slightest clue, except that Ozzie Smith would still make it in this alternative universe.
   85. The definitely immoral Eric Enders Posted: February 24, 2005 at 03:32 PM (#1163200)
I've always wondered that too, and not just in relation to the HOF -- if no statistics were kept, which players would be considered the best?
   86. DanG Posted: February 24, 2005 at 04:27 PM (#1163278)
I wonder what the HoF would look like if no individual player statistics were kept, and voting was only based on observation.

This is actually the approach used by more than a few voters for the Cooperstown hall. We're just Figure Filberts here - Figures don't lie but liars can figure, and all that kr@p. The Cult of Tools, don'tcha know.
   87. Jim Sp Posted: February 24, 2005 at 06:02 PM (#1163453)
Lots of shiny new toys for me this year.

Dean just doesn’t have enough career for me. Billy Rogell had a nice career, nowhere near the ballot. Allen is around #30.


1)Stearnes
2)Simmons
3)SuttlesCould be above Simmons, in any case he’ll get in soon.
4)AverillLooks like a HoMer to me even without PCL credit, but I do give him some PCL credit as he was obviously major league quality before arriving in the majors.
5)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.
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)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.
9)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.
10)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.
11)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.
12)Cravath— Great peak, great high minor league play.
13)Bill Monroe—Riley’s Biographical Encylopedia likes him a lot.
14)Cuyler--I think he’ll be below the in/out line.
15)BergerI suspect Berger will not quite make my HoM, it’s close though.

Griffith In my PHoM but off the ballot.
Hughie Jennings—If he played SS his whole (short) career, I’d be listening. He played a lot of 1B, though. His peak is impressive but it’s just not enough career.
Ferrell—one of the top 100 pitchers of all time, but not on my ballot currently.
Sisler--I don’t see his case being very strong. His peak was not long enough to merit election, though he certainly was a great hitter for a few years.
Van Haltren--Good player, part of the OF glut with Ryan and Duffy.
Hugh Duffy—Good hitter, great fielder. Duffy, Van Haltren, and Ryan are even in my estimation, but off the ballot.
   88. ronw Posted: February 24, 2005 at 07:48 PM (#1163663)
1946 Ballot (MVP candidates, All-Star candidates, and total HOM seasons are my own generalizations based on raw WS and yearly competition. All-Star candidate is roughly the top 16 pitchers and top 32 players. MVP candidate is anyone with double the WS numbers of the worst All-Star candidate in that season. I have incorporated WARP and Pennants Added.)

1. Turkey Stearnes I have Turkey on my Legends of Baseball team (20 teams, picking single seasons from 1871-present). That's not a reason to select him, but being the #25 player in Bill James' system is a good one. PHOM 1946

2. Al Simmons By many accounts, an arrogant man, but a good hitter. MVP Candidate 1925, 1929-1931, All-Star Candidate 1924, 1926-1928, 1932-1934, 1936, 1938 (13 HOM seasons). PHOM 1946.

3. John Beckwith Great hitter who has been tarnished by history, not unlike Dick Allen. PHOM 1942.

4. Mule Suttles I’m looking forward to a Beckwith/Suttles comparison. At first glance, it seems Beckwith was a better fielder, and may have struck out less.

5. George Van Haltren Only one season among top 8 players (1898). Never an MVP candidate, All-Star candidate 1888-1901. That is 14 consecutive solid years, the majority in a tough consolidated league. (14 HOM seasons) PHOM 1929.

6. Jake Beckley In his 16 All-Star seasons, he only averaged about 60% of MVP value, so that hurts him with peak voters. Never an MVP candidate, All-Star candidate 1888-1895, 1897, 1899-1905. (16 HOM seasons) PHOM 1928.

7. Jimmy Ryan Had a nice peak 1888-1891. MVP candidate 1888. All-Star candidate 1886-1887, 1889-1892, 1894-1899, 1902. (14 HOM seasons) PHOM 1930.

8. Eppa Rixey Consistently above average. Looking at measures other than Win Shares, he barely sneaks by Grimes. Never an MVP candidate, All-Star candidate 1916-1917, 1920-1925, 1927-1929, war credit 1918 (12 HOM seasons). PHOM 1939.

9. Wes Ferrell Best pitcher peak on the board, even including Dizzy Dean. MVP Candidate 1930, 1935-1936. All-Star Candidate 1929, 1931-1934, 1937. (9 HOM seasons)

10. Earl Averill Starting conservatively, may move up if I decide to credit his PCL play. MVP Candidate 1931, 1932, 1934, All-Star Candidate 1929-30, 1933, 1935-1938. (10 HOM seasons)

11. Burleigh Grimes I think he is being overlooked by the electorate, especially given his 1918-1924 peak. MVP candidate 1918, 1920. All-Star candidate 1921, 1923-1924, 1926-1930. (10 HOM seasons).

12. Dobie Moore I realized my Hughie Jennings argument (one or two more great seasons would put him over the top) applies to add Moore to my ballot.

13. Dick Lundy If actually a 122 OPS+ hitter, he deserves to rate higher.

14. Bill Monroe Lack of documentation hurts him.

15. Tommy Leach Consistently at the top of his weaker league. MVP candidate 1908. All-Star candidate 1901-1907, 1909-1910, 1913-1914. (12 HOM seasons)


LAST YEAR TOP TEN/NEW NOTABLES

Joe Sewell - Looks like the best of the available major league infielders to me, but is looking less impressive over time. Never an MVP candidate, All-Star candidate 1921-1929, 1931-1933 (12 HOM seasons).

Clark Griffith –I think that he had a relatively short productive career, and didn’t have nearly the peak of a Walsh, Brown, Vance or perhaps even Waddell. He needs to get a pretty steep 1890s pitcher premium to make my ballot. Pitchers ahead of him include Foster, Rixey, Grimes, Ferrell, Redding, Mendez, Mays, Willis and Cooper. All-Star candidate 1894-1901 (8 HOM seasons)

Newt Allen – Joins the list of Negro League solid candidates. Was Allen, George Scales, or Sammy T. Hughes better among 30’s 2B?

Wally Berger – Similar to Averill, but just below, due to his earlier dropoff. Ironically could not make the Seals outfield when Averill was there. MVP Candidate 1931, 1933-34, All-Star Candidate 1930, 1932, 1935-1938. (9 HOM seasons).

Dizzy Dean – To borrow a euphemism from another zany announcer: “Juuuust a bit outside.” Maybe Averill should give Diz a season or two of credit for likely causing Dizzy’s exclusion from the HOM. MVP Candidate 1934-1936, All-Star Candidate 1932-33, 1937. (6 HOM seasons)

Missing from my PHOM:

Terry (will make it some day)
Coveleski (will make it some day)
Vance (will make it some day)
Faber (may never make it, even with the peak adjustment)
Thompson (will never make it)
   89. DavidFoss Posted: February 24, 2005 at 09:16 PM (#1163848)
Wally Berger – Similar to Averill, but just below, due to his earlier dropoff. Ironically could not make the Seals outfield when Averill was there.

The 1928 Seals outfield of Averill-Jolley-RoyJohnson has often been touted as the best hitting minor league outfield of all time.

(I do agree with your Berger a bit below Averill assessment)
   90. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: February 25, 2005 at 01:38 AM (#1164288)
I am not sure if I am a Sisler supporter or not (I had had him between 10-20 every years since he has been eligible and he was on my ballot last year) but I do know that the latter part of his career hastn' hurt him in my eyes. Or at least it hasn't hurt him in comparison to not playing at all.

My system is based on WS and WARP 3 over 'average' (15 WS, 4 WARP) and over a number I use for peak (25 WS, 7 WARP). Even if Sisler had hit .100 without power and fielded like, well...me, he wouldn't be hurt much in my system. Any extra Win Shares that he adds in those years does help him when I figure in career value.

I am a peak voter so I should be inclined towrad Sisler. However, I just dont' find his peak that impressive. It is lower than Averill's in both Win Shares and WARP. The only real reason that I have Ssiler as high as I do, is that I believe that he should get a little boost for being the best available 1B (along with other considerations taht I use) and it isn't terribly close. If he had the same WS and WARP numbers bu tplyed LF, he wouldn't be in the top 35.

As for Cuyler, he just isn't terribly special. Better than manush, but he is what Sisler would have been had Sisler played LF and not 1B. Which is odd I guess.
   91. Michael Bass Posted: February 25, 2005 at 02:34 AM (#1164409)
If you are voting strictly on peak, Sisler is a HoMer.

Echoing the above, the problem on my end is that his peak isn't nearly impressive enough to carry his career. The one year is outstanding. The rest of the "peak" is completely unspectacular in context. He's just off my ballot, but I don't think he'll ever be a PHOMer, and I'm about as peak heavy as the voters come.
   92. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: February 25, 2005 at 04:05 AM (#1164573)
Yeah, in order to carry a small career I like to see a Jennings/Ferrell/Dean type peak. Sisler didnt' have that, in fact his peak is in the same ballpark as those of Averill and Berger.
   93. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: February 25, 2005 at 04:23 AM (#1164617)
Yeah, in order to carry a small career I like to see a Jennings/Ferrell/Dean type peak.

Did I just walk into some alternate universe where Sisler had a small career. Way way back when (right before I stopped voting) I posted something I'd worked out: divide all games a player played in a season by the number of games his teams played, times 154. Add that up for each year in his career and divide by 154 to find out how many seasons' worth of games he played. Let me add in Sisler to the first basemen I did:

Cap Anson 25.3
Jake Beckley 16.8
Roger Connor 16.5
Joe Start 14.4
Stuffy McInnis 14.1
Dan Brouthers 14.0
Ed Konetchy 13.7
George Sisler
Fred Tenney 13.5
Jake Daubert 13.3
John Morrill 13.2
Hal Chase 12.6
Tommy Tucker 12.1
Harry Davis 12.0
Jack Doyle 11.1
Dots Miller 10.4
Jake Fournier 9.9
Dan McGann 9.6
Bill Phillips 9.6
Long John Reilly 9.3
Fred Luderas 9.0
Henry Larkin 8.9
Kitty Bransfield 8.8
Frank Chance 8.5
Dave Orr 6.2

Even if you edit out the obvious non-candidates, it ain't a short career. Five years longer the Chance's career. jschmeagol compared Sisler's career length to Jennings, but Jennings had a career length of 9.2 season,
   94. Brent Posted: February 25, 2005 at 04:26 AM (#1164624)
I wonder what the HoF would look like if no individual player statistics were kept, and voting was only based on observation.

It would be the type of players who make the TV highlights -- home run hitters, flashy defensive players, players on championship teams and those who make key contributions in critical games.

Actually, we have a pretty good snapshot of what it would look like from the HoF elections of 1945 and 46 (see Ron Wargo's post # 40 above). I believe that the first true baseball encyclopedia was Turkin and Thompson in 1951, so that early Old-Timers' Committee was largely making its selections without comprehensive career statistics. Sure enough, they picked defensive stars on championship teams -- Jennings and McGraw, Duffy and McCarthy, Tinker and Evers and Chance. Chesbro, however, probably did make it in largely on the basis of his seasonal statistics for 1904.

Some modern players who might do well in a HoF world without statistics might include Bert Campaneris, Dave Concepcion, and Jack Morris.

An interesting question is whether the use of statistics, on balance, has helped or hurt the quality of HoF selections. Certainly many otherwise weak HoF cases have been buttressed by misleading or misinterpreted statistics. I doubt that Frisch would have been successful in inducting truckloads of his teammates without being able to point to their .300 batting averages and other inflated statistics.
   95. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 25, 2005 at 04:41 AM (#1164653)
Some modern players who might do well in a HoF world without statistics might include Bert Campaneris, Dave Concepcion, and Jack Morris.

I guarantee you that Joe Rudi would be a HOFer in that Bizzaro world.
   96. Gary A Posted: February 25, 2005 at 05:04 AM (#1164701)
Negro Leagues reputations were made almost entirely without statistics, of course, which weren't seriously compiled until the 1980s. I think you see the same emphasis on great (or at least flashy) defenders, an underappreciation for players who didn't fit the stereotype for a position.
   97. Michael Bass Posted: February 25, 2005 at 05:40 AM (#1164754)
Did I just walk into some alternate universe where Sisler had a small career.

Big difference between long career and long career value. Sisler has a whole bunch of seasons tacked on that add very little or nothing to his candidacy.
   98. KJOK Posted: February 25, 2005 at 06:04 AM (#1164776)
Sure enough, they picked defensive stars on championship teams -- Jennings and McGraw...

Actually, they DIDN'T put McGraw in as a player, but as a manager, plus McGraw was an OFFENSIVE star at a defensive position, not a defensive star. Jennings was an OFFENSIVE and DEFENSIVE star....
   99. Michael Bass Posted: February 25, 2005 at 06:14 AM (#1164791)
Prelim Ballot

Note that Stearns and Suttles (and Newt Allen, for that matter, though he's exceedingly unlikely to make the ballot) are not yet ranked. I would be stunned if Stearns is not #1 on my ballot given what I have heard so far. I started off thinking of Stuttles as a surefire top 3, I'm now much more skeptical.

1. Simmons - Closer to Ferrell on my ballot than one would think, though that's more a complement to Ferrell than an insult to Simmons
2. Ferrell
3. Jennings
4. Mendez
5. Sewell
6. Beckwith
7. Dean - What can I say, I'm a peak voter, and he's got it. In spades. Jumps to the top of my mid-ballot pitching glut.
8. Waddell
9. Griffith
10. Redding
11. Moore
12. Schang
13. Averill - This is conservative; I could end up going higher. And this is without a bonus for his minors. Really like what I see of him, good enough career, with a nice peak/prime.
14. Cross
15. Dunlap
   100. DavidFoss Posted: February 25, 2005 at 08:43 AM (#1164965)
Depth Chart:

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

------

Stearnes -- The real deal

Simmons -- A 157 OPS+ at age 32 and a Sisler-esque tail to his career. 50% more plate appearances in his peak than Sisler.

Suttles -- What I read reminds me of Kiner & Killebrew, a monster slugger who would be a DH today.

Averill -- I like his level of performance... career length issues are keeping him low on the ballot for now. Enough to top my CF list, though.

Berger -- About two seasons shorter than Averill who I had career length issues with. That's enough to drop him down into the glut. Yes, I'm a peak voter, but I have high standards for OF-ers because there are so many great ones.

Dean -- Might be underrating him. Still only 1967 IP and his peak ERA+'s are not inspiring enough for me. He just doesn't look like Sandy Koufax.
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