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Hall of Merit
— A Look at Baseball's All-Time Best

Monday, November 20, 2006

1990 Ballot (Elect Three)

Prominent new candidates: Joe Morgan, Jim Palmer, Ken Singleton, Amos Otis, Rick Monday, Greg Luzinski, Bob Watson, and Tug McGraw.

Top-ten returnees: Fergie Jenkins, Ken Boyer, Jimmy Wynn, Nellie Fox, Dobie Moore, Edd Roush, and Pete Browning.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 20, 2006 at 03:59 AM | 197 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. DavidFoss Posted: November 22, 2006 at 05:39 PM (#2244017)
Quiz can fill the gill

Wow... I have the weirdest typos sometimes.
   102. Babe Adams Posted: November 22, 2006 at 05:55 PM (#2244034)
Moses Solomon.
   103. jimd Posted: November 23, 2006 at 12:26 AM (#2244500)
A Happy Thanksgiving to All.

Ballot for 1990 (cast)

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

I am a peak/prime/career voter. Prime tends to dominate the ballot as Career has an easier time of it in HOM elections, and short Peaks don't get too far in my system.

1) J. MORGAN -- !! Prime 1965-1982!!. Best player in 1975 and 1976; WARP adds 1974, WS adds 1973. Best player candidate by WS in 1972 and 1974; WARP adds 1973. 1st-team MLB All-Star (2B) in 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977; WS adds 1965, 1969, and 1982; WARP adds 1967. Other star seasons include 1980 and 1981. Honarable Mention (HM) in 1966.

2) J. PALMER -- ! Prefer over Jenkins, but not by much. Prime 1970-1978. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SP) in 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978; WS adds 1970 and 1973. Other star seasons include 1971 and 1972. Honorable Mention (HM) in 1982.

3) F. JENKINS -- ! Davis & Dahlen, redux. Prime 1967-1975. Best player candidate in 1971, WARP adds 1974. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SP) in 1967, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1974. Other star seasons include 1969, 1972, and 1978. Honorable mention in 1975 and 1979.

[Big gap]

4) B. WALTERS -- Best of the backlog. Prime 1939-44. Best player in 1939; candidate in 1940 by WS. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SP) in 1939, 1941, 1944; WS adds 1940. Other star seasons include 1936 and 1942.

5) K. BOYER -- Joins my ballot of good defensive primes. Prime 1956-64. 1st-team MLB All-Star (3B) in 1958; WARP adds 1960, 1961. Other star seasons include 1956, 1959, 1962, 1963, 1964.

6) J. WYNN -- Splitting hairs between him and Singleton. Prime 1965-1975. 1st-team MLB All-Star (CF) in 1968, 1969, 1974, plus 1972 in RF; WARP adds 1970, WS adds 1967. Other star seasons include 1965, 1975.

7) K. SINGLETON -- Better peak than Bonds; not quite as much prime as Wynn. Prime 1973-81. Best player candidate 1977, WS adds 1979. 1st-team MLB All-Star (RF) in 1975 and 1977. Other star seasons include 1973, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981; also 1976 in LF.

8) F. JONES -- Still an all-star player when he walked away. I still think he rates ahead of Ashburn, but it's close. Prime 1900-08. 1st-team MLB All-Star (CF) in 1908; WARP adds 1902 and 1907. Other star seasons include 1900, 1901, 1903, 1904, 1905, 1906.

9) J. KAAT -- Belongs. 14 HOM "bats" were born 1893-1903 (Sisler, Heilmann, Ruth, Torriente, Charleston, Terry, Goslin, Suttles, Stearnes, Averill, Simmons, Waner, Bell, Gehrig); don't tell me that 10 pitchers born 1938-48 are too many.Prime 1961-1975. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SP) in 1962; WS adds 1966. Other star seasons include 1968, 1974, 1975. HM in 1961, 1969, 1971.

10) B. BONDS -- Scored much higher than I thought he would. Very nice prime; marginal on career. Those who go to extreme either way will miss him. Prime 1969-77. Best player candidate 1970 by WS. 1st-team MLB All-Star (RF) in 1970; WARP adds 1971 and 1973. Other star seasons include 1969, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1977, 1978. HM in 1979.

11) P. TRAYNOR -- Reassessing IF in general also. Traynor and Bancroft were major beneficiaries. Prime 1923-33. 1st-team MLB All-Star (3B) in 1923, 1925, 1927, 1931; WS adds 1929, 1932, 1933. Other star seasons include 1926. HM in 1928 and 1930.

12) F. DUNLAP -- Great two-way player; bypassed for some reason. Amibidextrous, too. Reportedly could catch and throw equally well with either hand. Useful in this era before modern fielding gloves forced a player to choose one hand for each. Prime 1880-86. Best Player candidate 1880-81 (WARP). 1st-team MLB All-Star (2B) in 1880, 1881; WARP adds 1882, 1883, and 1885. 1884 in the UA is hard to evaluate but may also be #1. Other star seasons include 1886. May be eligible for MiL credit pre-1880.

13) B. VEACH -- Good peak relative to great competition. Prime 1914-1922. 1st-team MLB All-Star (LF) in 1915; WARP adds 1916, 1917. Other star seasons include 1919, 1920, 1921, 1922. HM in 1914 and 1918.

14) D. BANCROFT -- See Traynor. Prime 1916-22. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SS) 1920 and 1921; WS adds 1922. Other star seasons include 1916, 1917, 1918, 1925, 1926.

15) L. TIANT -- Pitching candidate very close to the in/out line. Win Shares does not like him. Tended to alternate good years (even) and off years (odd). Prime 1966-1978. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SP) in 1968, 1974; WS adds 1976. Other star seasons include 1972 and 1973. Honorable Mention in 1966 and 1978.

16) E. HOWARD -- It's close, but he was ahead of Freehan. Prime 19??-64. 1st-team MLB All-Star (Ca) in 1961, 1963, 1964. Other star seasons include 1962. HM in 1958.

17) B. MAZEROSKI -- Prime 1957-66. 1st-team MLB All-Star (2B) 1960 and 1964; WARP adds 1958. Other star seasons include 1962, 1963, 1966. HM in 1957, 1961, 1965.

18) R. MARANVILLE -- Better WARP career than Beckley. Where's the luv from the career voters? Prime 1913-22. 1st-team MLB All-Star (SS) in 1914 and 1916 by WS. Other star seasons include 1913, 1915, 1917, 1919, 1921, 1922, and 1929. WWI service in 1918.

19) D. MOORE -- Just missed; pushed off by Tiant, then deeper by the classes of 1989 and 1990.

20) T. MUNSON -- Reassessing catchers in general. Close to Howard and Freehan. Prime 1970-78. 1st-team MLB All-Star (Ca) 1976; WARP adds 1973. Other star seasons include 1970, 1975, 1977. HM in 1971, 1972, 1978.

Just missing the cut are:
21-22) Ray Schalk, Dizzy Trout,
23-24) Roger Bresnahan, Nellie Fox,
25-26) Wilbur Wood, Norm Cash,
27-28) Quincy Trouppe, Edd Roush,
29-30) Dick Redding, Dizzy Dean,
31-32) Jake Beckley, Jim McCormick,
33-34) Hugh Duffy, Charley Jones,

Some say, in their defense of Pete Browning's 1882 season, that there is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to discounting players in weak leagues. I trust that they are also giving Fred Dunlap the benefit of the same doubt when it comes to 1884. Both the UA of 1884 and the AA of 1882 are of highly questionable major-league quality.
   104. sunnyday2 Posted: November 23, 2006 at 02:49 AM (#2244553)
I figure the AA in 1882 at 65 percent of the NL strength (a 35 percent discount). With the UA it's the other way around. 35 percent of value, 65 percent discount. That pretty much slots Dunlap's 1884 right into his values before and after.
   105. Rick A. Posted: November 23, 2006 at 02:50 AM (#2244554)
I tend to lean towards peak/prime, although a pure career candidate can sneak through at an important defensive position. I'm an anti-timeline, pennant-is-a-pennant voter. I give credit for wars, holdouts, strikes, blacklisting and players being in the minors when they're clearly MLB caliber, as well as NEL credit. I'm solidly in the WS camp, although I'll also look at OPS+, ERA+, IP, PA and ranking among contemporaries at their position. I do think that WS does miss on occasion, and I give a subjective bump to candidates who I think WS is off on.

Joe Morgan
Jim Palmer
Fergie Jenkins

1990 Ballot
1. Joe Morgan Clear #1. Elected PHOM in 1990
2. Charley Jones – Truly great hitter who missed 2 years in his prime. Elected PHOM in 1921.
3. Dobie Moore – Impressive peak. Giving him more credit for army years. 10+ year prime at important position. Elected PHOM in 1939.
4. Jim Palmer Slightly better than Fergie. Elected PHOM in 1990.
5. Pete Browning – Great hitter. Elected PHOM in 1925
6. Fergie Jenkins Elected PHOM in 1990.
7. Vic Willis – Very good pitcher. I like him better than Waddell. Elected PHOM in 1945.
8. Dick Redding –Elected PHOM in 1968
9. Ed Williamson – He’s back. I was talked into the idea that I overestimated him in the past, but decided I was right the first time. Elected PHOM in 1958
10. Hugh Duffy – Better than Van Haltren and Ryan, Elected PHOM in 1970
11. Burleigh Grimes – Higher peak than Rixey. Elected PHOM in 1961
12. Edd Roush – Better than Carey. Elected PHOM in 1975.
13. Bucky Walters Very high peak. Elected PHOM in 1972
14. Alejandro Oms – Jumps up some on this ballot. Elected PHOM in 1978.
15. Dizzy Dean –Short career, but high peak. Koufax lite. Elected PHOM in 1973.

Required Disclosures
Jimmy Wynn Just misses my ballot.
Nellie Fox Mid 20's. Will probably eventually make my PHOM.
Ken Boyer Still don't see the difference between Boyer, Elliott, and Bando.

New Candidates
Ken Singleton Close to Bob Johnson.
Amos Otis Nice CF. Ranked between Dom DiMaggio and Pinson.
Tug McGraw Still need to crunch some numbers, but doesn't seem as good as Marshall, Hiller, or Stu Miller.

Off the Ballot
16-20 EHoward,Wynn,Keller,Bresnahan,Cravath
21-25 Newcombe,Mays,Monroe,Fox,WCooper
26-30 Easter,Scales,Johnson,Boyer,Elliott
31-35 Bando,Tiernan,Singleton,FHoward,Trouppe
36-40 MWilliams,Doyle,FJones,McGraw, HWilson
   106. DavidFoss Posted: November 23, 2006 at 02:51 AM (#2244557)
Happy Thanksgiving!!!

1990 Ballot

1. Joe Morgan (ne) -- Great great player. Unbelievably awesome from 1972-77 with 1965-67 and 82 being great seasons as well. Still very very good most other years as well. Best of all-time? Its hard to say because the position has changed so much since the days of Lajoie, Collins & Hornsby. He's in the discussion with guys who played when 2B was more of a bat-position though which is incredibly impressive.
2. Jim Palmer (ne) -- 125 ERA+ in 3900 IP vaults him to the top of the backlog. He had a lot of injuries, but packed a lot of workhorse years in when he was healthy. (4 IP titles and one 2nd)
3. Ferguson Jenkins (4) -- Consistent workhorse. 4500 IP and 115 ERA+ vaults him over the top of the rest of the backlog.
4. Larry Doyle (5) -- MVP deadball second baseman. Position player cornerstone of the 1911-13 Giants pennant dynasty. Hit like an OF-er.
5. John McGraw (6) -- Great high-OBP 3B of the 1890s.
6. Gavvy Cravath (7) -- Top-notch corner OF-er of the 1910s. With MLE credit, he is at least on par with guys like Kiner.
7. Dick Redding (8) -- Great fireballer of the 1910s. His weak 1920s NeL numbers should not take away from his fine early play.
8. Roger Bresnahan (9) -- High OBP C-OF of the 1900s. Playing time and positional classification issues have kept him out of the HOM so far.
9. Charlie Keller (10) -- With war credit, his peak ranks right up with guys like Kiner. Will he get into the HOM before the great flood of expansion era hitters clogs the backlog?
10. Charley Jones (11) -- Unfairly blacklisted early hitting star.
11. Al Rosen (12) -- For five years, he was one of the greatest hitting 3B of all time.
12. Pete Browning (13) -- Another short-career high peak hitter. These guys used to be just off my ballot, but they've percolated into points positions.
13. Bob Elliott (14) -- Excellent 3B of the 40s and early 1950s.
14. Mickey Welch (15) -- Sure he was overrated, but we've been inducting guys like him from other eras.
15. Frank Chance (nr) -- Great high OBP 1B of the dead ball era.
16-20. Roush, Lombardi, BJohnson, Fox, Beckley
21-25. DMoore, Trouppe, FHoward, Cash, Bando,
26-30. Leach, JWynn, Cepeda, Singleton, Brock
   107. Rob_Wood Posted: November 23, 2006 at 03:26 AM (#2244574)
1990 ballot from this highly career voter -- Happy Thanksgiving!

1. Joe Morgan - in a close race for best second baseman ever (I have them Collins, Hornsby, Morgan, Lajoie)
2. Jim Palmer - virtually tied with Jenkins (tiebreaker is Palmer's missed season(s) early in career)
3. Fergie Jenkins - long and highly productive career, luv the strikeout to walks
4. Jake Beckley - luv the career, though peakless
5. George Van Haltren - deserving star of the underrepresented 1890s
6. Ken Boyer - solid hitter and great defender in superior NL
7. Bob Johnson - solid hitter, solid career (w/minor lg credit)
8. Bobby Bonds - good combo of peak and career (where's the luv?)
9. Nellie Fox - very good second baseman for a long time
10. Dobie Moore - great all-around shortstop, though shortish career
11. Tommy Bridges - luv the strikeouts & win pct with minor league and wwii credit
12. Bob Elliott - mired with woeful Pirates and Braves
13. Jimmy Wynn - tremendously underrated player
14. Edd Roush - very good center fielder and solid hitter (with holdout credit)
15. Reggie Smith - with modicum of japan credit
16-21. Klein, Keller, CJones, Maranville, Traynor, Aparicio

Not voting for Browning (around 50th).
   108. mulder & scully Posted: November 23, 2006 at 07:00 AM (#2244630)
Used to be Kelly in SD

1990 Ballot: Not much movement this year.

To recap my balloting:
I consider prime/peak/per year/ and career and in that order.
Career totals adjusted for season length, WWI and II, minor leagues (rare), and blacklisting. Peak totals - 3 straight years for hitters and a 50/50 combo of 3 straight and best any 3 years for pitchers. Prime totals - best any 7 years. Seasonal average - per 648 PA for hitters and 275 innings for pitchers. Bonus for being a league all-star by STATS or Win Shares. Bonus for being the best pitcher in a league. Positional bonus for catcher. These numbers are weighted, combined and compared to theoretical maximums. Pitchers are adjusted for changes in the game (Pre 60', pre-Lively Ball, and current.) I try to have a fair mix of positions and time periods on my ballots. I consider place within decade as well.

PHOM: 1990: Joe Morgan, Jim Palmer, Ferguson Jenkins
PHOM: 1989: Johnny Bench, Carl Yastrzemski, Gaylord Perry
PHOM: 1988: Willie Stargell, Orestes Minoso
PHOM: 1987: Roger Bresnahan, Larry Doyle, Joe Torre
PHOM: 1986: Willie McCovey and Early Wynn
PHOM: 1985: Frank Chance, Wilbur Cooper, and Ralph Kiner
PHOM: 1984: Billy Williams and Jimmy Wynn
PHOM: 1983: Bill Freehan and Brooks Robinson
PHOM: 1982: Hank Aaron and Frank Robinson
PHOM: 1981: Bob Gibson and Harmon Killebrew
PHOM: 1980: Al Kaline, Juan Marichal, and Ron Santo
PHOM: 1979: Willie Mays and Gavy Cravath

1. Joe Morgan: Best second baseman whose career started after 1920. I cannot imagine a theory of winning baseball that would allow a different decision.
Top 12/15 position player in league in 1965, 1967, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1982
Rank in league/majors: 7th/9th, 12th t/21st t, 7th t/9th t, 1st/2nd, 1st/1st, 2nd/2nd, 1st/1st, 1st/1st, 4th t/6th t, 5th/8th t.
Best second baseman in league: 1965, 1967, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1980, 1982. In majors: 1965 t, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1982

2. Jim Palmer: A great, great pitcher. He did have great defenses, and he used them to his advantage like no other Orioles pitcher.
Top 5 then 6 pitcher in league (up to 68/69 and then after): 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978
Rank in league/majors: 2nd/4th t, 4th t/8th t, 4th/6th, 3rd t/4th t, 1st/1st, 1st t/1st t, 1st/1st, 3rd/4th
Best in league: 1975, 1976 t, 1977 In majors: 1975, 1976 t, 1977

3. Ferguson Jenkins:
Top 5 or 6 pitcher in league (up to 68/69 and after): 1967, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1978.
Rank in league/majors: 3rd t/4th t, 2nd/5th, 2nd/3rd, 1st/1st, 4th/10th, 4th/5th, 6th/9th, (tied for 8th in 1969)
Best in league: 1971, In majors: 1971

4. Mickey Welch (PHOM 1901): The weight of the evidence.

5. Charley Jones (PHOM 1906): The weight of the evidence. A top 10 position player from 1876 to 1885. Please see the Keltner List on his thread. All-time, through 1980, Jones ranks in a knot of five left fielders between 8th and 12th all-time. The other four are Simmons, Clarke, Stovey, and Magee.
Top 10 position player in 1876, 1878, 1879, 1883, 1884, 1885. Eleventh in 1877. Pro-rated 10th or 11th after blacklisted in 1880. Blacklisted in 1881 and 1882. Best player in 1884, top 4 in 1878, 1879 and 1885.

6. Pete Browning (PHOM 1921): Hitter. Ranks at the top of a group of 5 center fielders between 13th and 17th all-time. Doby, Hill, and Brown are in the HoM, Duffy is not. Top 10 position player in 1882, 1883, 1884, 1885, 1887, and 1890. Best in 1882 and 1885. League ranks, 1st, 4th, 5th, 1st, 2nd, and 4th.

7. Charlie Keller (PHOM 1957): MVP level play for 6 straight years with 1.66 years of War credit. Only DiMaggio, Williams, and Musial were better in the 1940s before he hurt his back. I have him as the 13th best left fielder through 1979. Top 10 position player in AL in 1940, 1941, 1942, 1943, and 1946. If you pro-rate his 1945 season, he is top 10 that year also. Ranks: 10th, 4th, 2nd, 2nd, 4th. 1945 pro-rated he comes out the best position player along with Greenberg.

8. Quincy Troupe (PHOM 1960): A great hitting catcher whose nomadic career has done wonders to hide his value. I ask the many voters who trust the MLEs of elected or balloted NeLers to look again at Troupe. 10th best catcher of all time as of 1980.

9. Hugh Duffy (PHOM 1919): A key member of the best team of the 1890s. Please see the Keltner List for him. I need to post that to the Duffy thread soon. Ranks in a group of 5 center fielders between 13th and 17th all-time. Doby, Hill, and Brown are in the HoM, Browning is not. Top 10 in 1890, 1891, 1892, 1893, 1894, and 1897. 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 1st, 1st, and 8th. 11th in 1895.

10. Bucky Walters (PHOM 1958): Best peak available (tied with Dean) among eligible white pitchers. Best NL pitcher in 1939, 1940, and 1944. 2nd in NL by a hair in 1941. Best in Majors in 1939, top 4 in other 3 years.
   109. mulder & scully Posted: November 23, 2006 at 07:01 AM (#2244631)
11. Tommy Leach (PHOM 1966): Great defense. Good hitting at two key defensive positions. A key player in one of the best defensive teams ever. 9th best third baseman if all credit for career is at third, 24th best center fielder if all credit is at CF. Split the difference and he is about even with Hack and Sutton (w/o NA credit).
Top 10 in league in 1902, 1904, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1913, 1914. Rank in league/majors: 4th/5th, 14th in 1903 but 9 are outfielders, 6th t/16th t, 3rd t/7th t, 4th/9th, 7th/11th, 4th t/12th t, 4th/9th.
Best in league at 3rd: 1902, 1903, 1904. Best in majors: 1902.
Top 3 in league in outfield: 1907, 1913, 1914. 4th by one WS in 1909.

12. Gavy Cravath (PHOM 1979): Credit for 1909, 1910, 1911. All players, All times. All-Star 5 times by STATS and Win Shares. Top ten position player in NL in 1913 - 1917. 1st, 3rd, 1st, 6th, 7th. A top 10 player in either league from 1909-1911 while with Minneapolis.

13. Vic Willis (PHOM 1942): Take another look. 4 times one of the top 2 pitchers in the National League. Best in NL in 1899 and 1901, 2nd in 1902 and 1906.

14. Dobie Moore (PHOM 1967): Banks before Banks. My system finds them quite comparable. In a knot between 11th and 15th among shortstops through 1980 with Glasscock, Reese, Banks, and Jennings – all HoMers. Best SS, if in majors, in 1920, 1921, 1922, 1924, and 1925.

15. Jimmy Wynn (PHOM 1984): 4 times a top 6 player in the stronger NL, 4 times top 7 in majors. Best centerfielder eligible from Mays until ... Dale Murphy? Five years after Griffey, Jr. retires? Top 10 in 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1972, and 1974. 9th, 3rd, 4th, 11th, 6th, 4th.

16. George Burns (PHOM 1938): Best leadoff hitter of the 1910s NL. Overlooked. Top 10 in NL in 1913, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920. Rank in league/majors: 8th/20, 1st/4th, 7th/13th, 9th/17th, 3rd/5th, 3rd/8th, 2nd/4th, 7th/17th. 1921-23 in NL only: 14th, 18th, 15th.
Top 3 in NL outfield in 1913-15, 1917-19. Top 3 in majors in 1914, 17, 19.

17. Roush (PHOM 1940): PHOM for years. 3 MVP type years, excellent defense. Top 10 in NL in 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920, 1923, 1925, 1926. 4th t/9th t, 5th t/11th t, 1st/2nd, 2nd/5th, 3rd t/8th t, 9th/15th t, 9th t/22nd t.
Top 3 in NL outfield in 1917-20, 1923. Top 3 in majors in 1919, 1920.

18. Alejandro Ohms (PHOM 1964): Many years of all-star-plus years (over 25 win shares.) 19th among centerfielders through 1980.

19. Frank Chance (PHOM 1985): Best peak and prime by a first baseman between Connor/ Brouthers and Gehrig. Top 10 in league: 1903, 1904, 1905, 1906, 1907. Rank in league/majors: 3rd/3rd t, 2nd/5th t, 8th t/15th t, 3rd/4th, 6th t/15th t. Best first baseman in league and majors in 1903-1907, league 1908.

20: Cooper, Wilbur (PHOM 1985): He and Bunning are very similar, but Bunning is slightly better in several ways so there is an election gap between them.
Top 5 in league/majors: 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1924. 4th/NR, 4th/NR, 5th/NR, 3rd/5th, 2nd/6th, 1st/3rd, 5th/NR, 2nd/5th. Plus a 6th in 1916.

21: Burleigh Grimes (PHOM 1961): Too many ups and downs in his career to get elected, but I think he and Early Wynn are the same guy.
Top 5 in league/majors: 1918, 1920, 1921, 1924, 1928, 1929. 2nd/5th t, 2nd/3rd t, 1st/4th t, 3rd t/NR, 2nd t/2nd t, 2nd t/NR.

22. Don Newcombe: Credit for minor league years and Korea. Yes, the ERA+ were not that high, but the innings pitched were great. I give MiL credit for 1947, 1948, and 4 starts worth in 1949.
Top 5 starters in league in 1949, 1950, 1951, (Korea 1952, 1953), 1955, 1956, 1959
Rank in league/majors: 4th/9th t (1st t/5th t with MiL credit), 4th/8th, 5th/9th, 2nd/2nd, 1st/2nd, 5th/9th. Also, Korean War Credit for 1952 and 1953 at 22 WS and 23 WS gives 2 more top 4 years. For a total of 6 plus two fifths.

23. Roger Bresnahan (PHOM 1987): I have been overlooking him again. Great year in CF is a bonus. Look at how much better he was than other catchers of his era. Top 10 in league: 1903, 1904, 1906, 1908. Rank in league/majors: 5th/8th, 10th/24th, 7th/11th, 8th/15th. Best catcher in majors in 1905, 1906, 1908. Best centerfielder in majors 1903.

24. Larry Doyle (PHOM 1987): Great hitter at second. Defense left something to be desired. Top 10 in league in 1909, 1910, 1911, 1912, 1913, 1915. Rank in league/majors: 4th t/8th t, 7th/11th, 4th/9th, 3rd/9th, 9th/22nd, 2nd/5th.
Best second baseman in league: 1909 (t), 1910, 1911, 1912, 1915, 1916 (t), 1917. Second best in majors to Collins in 1909, 1911, 1912, 1915. Third best in majors behind Collins and Lajoie in 1910.

25. Jack Fournier: Noticed that I forgotten about him when he is given appropriate credit for 1917, 1918, and 1919. Remember he did have a 142 OPS+ for his career.
Top 10 in league in 1915, 1918 (minor league credit) 1921, 1923, 1924, 1925. Rank in league/majors: 5th t/7th t, (9th/17th), 5th t/14th t, 5th t/10th t, 3rd/4th, 3rd/6th.
Best first baseman in league: 1915, 1921, 1923, 1924, 1925. Best in majors: 1915, 1923, 1924, 1925.
I believe the MLEs for Fournier are too low because they give him OPS+ of 117, 137, and 122 at ages 27, 28, 29. Those would be his 8th/10th/and 11th highest OPS+ for his career. He may not have set career highs but I think they would have been more line with his career.
   110. mulder & scully Posted: November 23, 2006 at 07:02 AM (#2244632)
26. Frank Howard: Just slightly below the left field knot at 14/16/18 and Billy Williams. Career was mismanaged by the Dodgers, but at that point they had more talent than they knew what to do with.
Top 12/15 in league in 1962, 1965, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971. Rank in league/majors: 12th t/18th t, 8th t/22nd t, 6th t/14th t, 2nd/2nd, 4th t/8th t, 6th t/10th t, 15th t/33rd t.
Top 3 outfielder in league: 1968, 1969, 1970. Top 3 in majors: 1968, 1970.

27. Luke Easter: Could be anywhere between here and the ballot depending on how much credit I'm giving next week.

28. Herman Long: Another key player on the 1890s Bostonians. Fantastic fielder. Need to review his defensive numbers. Top 10 in league in 1891, 1892, 1893 . Rank in league/majors: 2nd/3rd t, 6th, 3rd
Best shortstop in league/majors: 1891, 1893. Best in league: 1889

29. Dick Redding (PHOM 1975): Not enough shoulder seasons to go with the big 4 years. I pulled the trigger too soon on him. May need to do a recall election...

30. Al Rosen: What if...
Top 10 in league: 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954
Rank in league/majors: 4th t/7th t, 5th t/14th t, 3rd/5th, 1st/1st, 7th/14th.
Best third baseman in AL in 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954. Best in majors in 1950, 1952, 1953.

31. Ken Singleton: Slugging outfielder for Weaver’s Orioles. Career reputation is hindered by playing in a pitcher’s park in an average/slightly lower than average era for hitting.
Top 15 in league in: 1973, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980,
Rank in league/majors: 9th t/13th t, 1st t/2nd t, 12th t/24th t, 2nd/2nd, 4th t/8th t, 3rd/5th, 7th t/12th t
Top 3 outfielder in league in 1975, 1977, 1978, 1979. In majors in 1975, 1977, 1979.
Could move up.

32. Orlando Cepeda: A little ahead of Cash based on in-season durability. A little short on career, peak, and prime. Very close to ballot, but first base has the toughest standards.
Top 10/12/15 in league (up to 62/62-68/69 - ): 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1967
Rank in league: 9th t/19th t, 6th/8th, 6th/11th t, 7th t/11th t, 7th/7th, 3rd/5th, (11th in 1958)
Best first baseman in NL four times: 1961, 1962, 1963, and 1967. Best LF in 1960.

33. Vern Stephens: Great hitter. More than adequate defense. The AL in the 1940s had the following shortstops: Boudreau, Appling, Rizzuto, Joost, and Pesky. Pretty good grouping.
Top 10 in league in 1944, 1945, 1948, 1949 (11th 1943, 1947, 13th in 1950)
Rank in league/majors: 2nd/3rd, 3rd/9th t, 9th t/14th t, 3rd/6th t.
Best shortstop in league in 1944, 1945. 2nd to HoMer Boudreau in 1943, to Joost in 1949, to Rizzuto in 1950 (by far), 3rd to Boudreau and Joost in 1948. In majors in 1944, 1945.

34. Elston Howard: I kept overlooking him. I don’t know what to do about balancing his actual value to the team compared with his opporunity issues: Korea, race. Catcher bonus.
Top 10 in league in 1961, 1963, 1964
Rank in league/majors: 6th t/11th t, 3rd t/12th t, 3rd/8th.
Best catcher in league in 1961, 1963, 1964. In majors in 1961, 1963, 1964.

35. Sal Bando: A conservative placement. There are so many good thirdbasemen in this era that I want to be careful. Could move up if I see a good enough argument. His peak is very good, his prime is good but his career is so-so as are his per-year numbers.
Top 10 in league (15 from 69 forward) in 1969, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1976, 1978
Rank in league/majors: 3rd/6th t, 3rd t/9th t, 12th t/25th t, 2nd t/6th t, 12th t/24th t, 11th t/28ht t.
Top 3b in league in 1969, 1971, 1972, 1973. In majors in 1969, 1972, 1973.

36. Dizzy Dean: Great peak. Just nothing else there. Hello, Al Rosen.
Top 5 starters in league in 1932, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1936
Rank in league/majors: 2nd/6th, 5th/9th, 1st/1st, 1st/2nd, 2nd/2nd

37. Wally Berger: Not enough career for me. Reevaluated. Excellent peak, 5 other all-star years after I give one year of MLE credit for 1929.
Top 10 in league in 1930, 1931, 1932, 1933, 1934, 1936.
Rank in league/majors: 10th t/21st t, 1st/6th, 6th/14th, 1st/2nd t, 3rd/5th t, 10th t/21st t (13th in 1935).
Top 3 OF in league: 1931, 1933, 1934 and NL best CF in 1932 (5th overall). In majors 1931, 1933, 1934.

38. John McGraw: Just not healthy enough. After having looked at the following McGraw gets a move up.
Top 10 (15 from 92-99) in league: 1893, 1894, 1898, 1899
Rank in league/majors: 14th t, 5th t, 5th, 2nd, (16th in 1895 but 4th among non-OF, 17th in 1897 but 6th among non-OF, 11th in 1900 but 2nd among non-OF)
Best in league at position, 3rd base: 1899, 1900. In majors in 1899, 1900.

39. Norm Cash: I had been overrating him. I did not look close enough at how he compared to other 60s players. Top 10 in league only 4 times: 1961, 1963, 1965, 1966. Adjusting for additional teams only adds 1971. 2nd/2nd, 10th t/27th t, 10th t/25th t, 6th/13th, 13th w/24 (71).
Best first baseman in AL in 1961, 1963, 1965, 1966, and 1971. Best in majors in 1961. Even with the missed games.

40. Nellie Fox: He certainly stood out over the other second basemen of his era. Too bad it wasn't that difficult.
Top 10 in league in 1952, 1954, 1955, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960 (11th in 1951, 1953): .
Rank in league/majors: 10th t/24th t, 8th t/14th t, 5th/14th t, 3rd/6th, 10th t/17th t, 1st t/5th t, 9th t/22nd t,
Best 2b in league in 1955, 1956, 1957, 1959, 1960. In majors in 1955, 1957, 1959, 1960 t.
   111. mulder & scully Posted: November 23, 2006 at 07:04 AM (#2244633)
41. Wally Schang: I see the arguments. 6 times top 10 in OBP, 4 times in SLG and OPS, 5 times in OPS+.
Never in top 10 players in league because of playing time.
Best catcher in league in 1913, 1914, 1919, 1921. In majors in 1914, 1919, 1921.

42. Bob Elliott: I need to review his candidacy. Reviewed Boyer and I like Elliott better.
Top 10 in league in 1943, 1944, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950.
Rank in league/majors: 7th t/14th t, 8th t/13th t, 3rd/5th, 4th/8th, 10th t/20th t, 7th t/12th t. (12th in 1942)
Best 3rd baseman in 1943, 1944, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950. In majors in 1943, 1944, 1947, 1948 and virtual ties in 1949, 1950.
Very little difference for me between Bando, McGraw, Elliott, Boyer, Lyons, and Williamson.

43. Jack Stivetts: 4th best pitcher in the 1890s. Trouble was he pitched right as the distance changed and he was worked to death to start his career.
Top 4 (6 in 12 team era) in league: 1890, 1891, 1892, 1894
Rank in league/majors: 2nd/9th (even with a 15% discount), 1st/2nd (no discount) or 4th (20% discount), 1st, 8th in 1893, 6th, 8th in 1896.

44. George Van Haltren (PHOM 1939): Moved down in comparison with Mike Tiernan. Lots of years of 25+ win shares in the 1890s. Too bad the other outfielders were putting up better every year.
Top 10 in league (top 15 in 12 team era) in 1890, 1891, 1894, 1895, 1896, 1897, 1898 (11th t in 1889 and 1900)
Rank in league/majors: combination pitcher/outfielder ranked 5th best player with all pitchers ahead of him, 5th/7th t, 11th t, 13th t, 12th, 9th t, 6th t.
Top 3 in outfielders in league(top 5 in 12-team era) in 1898. In majors in 1898.

45. Mike Tiernan: He had slipped through my net. Much better than I realized.
Top 10 (15 from 1892-1899) in league in 1888, 1889, 1890, 1891, 1895, 1896, 1897 .
Rank in league/majors: 7th/9th, 1st t/3rd t, 4th t/8th t, 3rd t/7th t, 13th, 8th, 11th.
Top 3 OF or top 5 in 12-team league: 1888, 1889, 1890, 1891, 1896. Top 3/5 in majors: 1889, 1890, 1891, 1896.

46. Luis Tiant: A lot of pitchers put up great numbers in the 60s and 70s. Tiant doesn’t match them. Hall of Very Good. 3 times a major league all-star is good.
Top 5 starter (61-68) top 6 (69- ) in league: 1968, 1974, 1976.
Rank in league/majors: 2nd/3rd, 2nd/2nd, 5th/5th (7th t in 1967, 7th t in 1972, 9th t in 1973)

47. Sal Maglie: Credit for Mexican League helps

48. Carl Mays: The best supported pitcher, offensively and defensively, other than Spalding, by Chris J’s RSI and Defensive support measures. Too bad he doesn’t have an “average” aging pattern in 1922, 1923, and 1925.
Top 5 starters in league in 1916, 1917, 1918, 1920, 1921.
Rank in league/majors: 5th t/9th t, 4th/5th, 4th/5th t, 3rd t/6th t, 2nd/2nd

49. Monroe, Bill: He impressed the hell out of McGraw

50. George Scales: Pretty good player. Will probably move up after I adjust for Hall of Fame’s new numbers.

51. Hippo Vaughn: Excellent peak, but not enough career in the majors.
Top 5 starters in league in 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920
Rank in league/majors: 3rd t/7th t, 3rd/8th, 1st/4th, 1st/1st (I don’t count Cicotte’s year), 4th/11th t (plus an 8th in the AL in 1910 and NL in 1915)

52. Thurman Munson: Career wasn’t long enough and peak wasn’t high enough. There were a lot of excellent catcher years/careers in the 1970s: Bench/Fisk/Tenace/Simmons. Munson is definitely Hall of Very Good.
Top 15 in league in 1970, 1973, 1975, 1976.
Rank in league/majors: 12th/25th t, 9th t/22nd t, 12th t/27th t, 12th t/24th t.
Top C in league: 1970, 1973, 1976. In majors: 1976.

53. Gene Tenace:
Top 15 in league in: 1973, 1974, 1975, 1977, 1979
Rank in league/majors: 7th t/18th t, 13th t/31st t, 2nd/5th, 10th t/20th t, 14th t/28th t, (19th in 1976, 1978)
Best catcher in league in 1975 (2nd in league in 1977 and 1979). In majors in 1975.
Best first baseman in league in (2nd in 1973).

54. Lon Warneke: A good peak, but not as high as Dean and his career is not long enough.
Top 5 starters in league in 1932, 1933, 1934, 1935
Rank in league/majors: 1st/2nd, 2nd t/2nd t, 3rd/6th, 5th t/9th t (plus a 6th in 1940 and 1941.)

55. Ken Boyer: Next third baseman after Lyons and Williamson. Scratch that. Reviewed his record and moved into the top 50, almost.
Top 10 in league in 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1964
Rank in league/majors: 6th t/14th t, 8th/17th t, 4th/5th t, 7th/14th t, 9th t/16th t. (12th in 1956, 17th t in 1962, 1963)
Best 3rd baseman in never (see Eddie Mathews, Dick Allen, Ron Santo). In majors in see previous. Late catch, a tie with Mathews in 1958.

Amos Otis: He and Cesar Cedeno were the best centerfielders whose careers were centered in the 70s. Neither has quite the career length or peak height to make my ballot. Though maybe playing on artificial turf prevented such length or peak.

Rick Monday: A long, peakless career.

Greg Luzinski: Very nice 1973, 1975, 1977, 1978. Too bad he was born 20 years too early. If he started his career in 1990, he might be a Hall of Fame candidate – no artificial turf, smaller ballparks, livelier ball, better conditioning, etc.

Tug McGraw: Some excellent years mixed in with some average/below average, especially considering the relief pitcher ERA advantage.
   112. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 23, 2006 at 09:05 AM (#2244647)
I've read the whole thread . . . interesting week so far.

Regarding yest's ballot . . . I have no issue with people calling out a voter if they see faulty logic, obviously strange conclusions. Especially the Morgan/Oliva thing (which was rectified).

As far tossing out a ballot - it's a fine line. We can't show preferential treatment just because someone has been here forever. If yest had insisted on keeping Oliva above Morgan, it would have been something that would have to have been considered - as there would be no rational justification for such a conclusion. Obviously that was just a mistake, so no harm done.

I think the point where a ballot should be nullified is when the voter cannot contruct any reasonable argument in defense of the criticism. Obviously this is a last resort, but it's not a 'never'. There could be a case where that's the only recourse though we haven't seen it yet.

That doesn't mean that we are forcing people towards a consensus - it means we are requiring people to come up with decisions that can be justified rationally.

I also agree that we need to be more vigilant about voters making comments with their ballots and the like. I cannot monitor this 24x7, so as John said, please make a comment on the thread and email me if you see an issue that I should be looking in on.
   113. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 23, 2006 at 01:21 PM (#2244662)
Obviously this is a last resort, but it's not a 'never'.

I don't think it should be "never" either, Joe. I supported your move to remove those two ballots that had Wid Conroy on them over Cy Young in 1917. Whatever you think about yest's ballots, he's never come close to that silliness.
   114. Howie Menckel Posted: November 23, 2006 at 02:24 PM (#2244670)
I'm thankful that I remembered to vote this week!

1990 ballot, our (and my) 93rd ballot

Overall, I think there is too much emphasis on WARP3 and WS, which are intriguing tools but which are not yet sufficiently mature.
So my preference for ERA+ and OPS+ helps, I think, as a reality check. Increasingly, I've had to adjust for PAs per season, not really an issue in earlier years when nearly all star players played almost every day.
I tend to be mostly prime-oriented with hitters, prime and career with pitchers. But a huge peak sometimes catches my eye, and a remarkably long hitting career also works for me.

I had last year's electees Johnny Bench, Carl Yastrzemski, and Gaylord Perry 1-2-3 (which is just where they finished, in that order).

1. JOE MORGAN - Excellent player from 1965-67, with 130-132 OPS+s at 2B. Gets hurt, and seems to get sidetracked a bit for several years. Traded to Reds in 1972, and immediately puts up one of the monstrous all-around performances among 2Bs in baseball history. Excellent for a 6th season as well, then adds another 7 seasons of very good but not great play (except a 135 OPS+ for SF in 1982). Had 500 PA (or equivalent) 18 times, never below 105. Playing 2B, that means he's a good player every darn year. Hit a dismal .135 BA in 96 LCS ABs, and hit only .235 in four World Series - but that's a tiny paint smudge on a masterpiece.
2. JIM PALMER - Like some other voters, I rode a bit of a rollercoaster regarding Palmer's phenomenal defensive support. It lessens his achievements slightly, but a 125 ERA+ in almost 4000 IP and 10 very good to excellent seasons is impressive nonetheless. What clinched a close win over Jenkins is both tangible and anecdotal evidence that Palmer "pitched to the defense" deliberately, which is a good thing, not bad. Palmer seemed to me like Maddux most of his career - steady, not flashy (well, on the field, lol), and ultimately great.
3. FERGUSON JENKINS - He's a bit underrated by this electorate; I hope he gets in this year by a wide margin. Every bit the workhorse that Gaylord Perry was, just that the highs weren't quite as high and the peak/prime/career comes up a little short. Never an ERA+ better than 143, a little surprising how consistently good he was for so long. Top 3 in NL Cy Young voting five times.

4. NELLIE FOX - Stellar recent newcomers have finally stalled Nellie's ballot climb here, but he remains my top backlogger for now. Clearly the best of an era, clearly underrated, and looking more and more unique to me. That core of 1951-60 as a league-average or better hitter while playing a great defensive 2B and being so durable is quite valuable, I think. Even moreso when you examine Mazeroski, Aparicio, and friends.
5. PETE BROWNING - An old favorite who maintains a recent boost for a third straight year as I reexamine which players I seriously can imagine as HOMers. Seven OPS+s above 163. 10 seasons as a regular, a good number for the era. If only he fielded a little better. He stunk at it, sometimes, but played some 16 pct of his career in the infield. Was OF fielding hugely important in this era? I say no.
6. JAKE BECKLEY - I've noted on the Brock thread how thoroughly Beckley crushes Lou. WS is spectacularly wrong on that count, so much so that it should cause those favoring the metric to rethink it a bit, imo.
Beckley's OPS+s as a regular: 152 44 38 33 31 28 27 27 26 26 26 24 22 12 12 05 02
His fielding had more value than I think some voters realize (though not as much as I used to think), he played every day, he hit well - there's nothing remotely like this career among the unelected hitters from 1875-1935. 13 OPS+s of 120 or better (even Kaline had 'only' 12, and Banks only had 7). Rivals came and went; it's only Beckley who lasted. Suffers from those looking at his career through a modern prism, especially with newer voters. The biggest issue for him may be the 8 seasons in the 120s - I find that quite valuable given era and position; others do not.
7. BOB JOHNSON - I really like this sort of consistency over a dozen strong years. Sort of the Joe Gordon of OFs in career shape, or a slightly longer and flatter version of Kiner. I am quite bothered by 1944 being his highest OPS+; seems like he took advantage of the weak competition. But has a decade's worth of excellent hitting, for a prime that I like better than Van Haltren's or almost any other holdover's.
8. BOB ELLIOTT - If you haven't examined him in a while - or ever - get to it!! Six seasons of at least 134 OPS+, ALL of them as a 3B! Wish he'd played all 3B and not so much OF, but c'est le vie - Sewell seemed to get treated as a full SS by some. Beats out Boyer (see Boyer thread for details) and compares remarkably well with Santo as a hitter (see Santo thread for more details). Better than HOMer Hack as well.
9. KEN BOYER - Seven OPS+s over 120, and an excellent fielder, too. Good endurance, and seven times in the top 8 in ribbys. I can't quite get him over Elliott yet, but I am mulling.
10. BURLEIGH GRIMES - Compare to Ruffing, Rixey, Wynn and other such HOM pitchers. I dismissed him as short of Rixey and Ruffing, and he was. But he's just one 130 ERA+ year short of climbing a little higher on this ballot.
11. CANNONBALL DICK REDDING - A longtime favorite who has climbed his way back onto my ballot in recent years. I liked him as an all-around candidate, but the HOF research suggests he's more of a peak guy. Those types don't always fare well with me, but with the weakening ballot, to be fair I think he belongs here.
12. QUINCY TROUPPE - Leaps onto my ballot for the first time ever, as I'm now starting to believe he wasn't just a durable, long-career catcher. A better hitter than I'd thought previously' didn't always get to play against many HOMers, but stacked up nicely when he did.
13. CHARLIE KELLER - First time on my ballot. Poor man's Ralph Kiner, but even Kiner's election didn't quite get him onto my ballot before. Of his six actual big seasons, one was a weakened 1943 and another is a slight issue, 1942. I don't mind bumping close guys up and in during the war, but the pct of extrapolation here has been too much for me 'til now.
14. KEN SINGLETON - This spot was going to go to Wynn, but then I noticed:
JimmyWynn 167 57 51 46 43 41 37 33 16 08
Singleton 165 56 53 52 47 42 32 31 18 09 01
Singleton's 131/101 were as a DH.
Utimately I may move Wynn in here, once someone convinces me how great a fielder he was. But for the moment, it's Singleton.
15. GAVY CRAVATH - Slips three places in reconsideration of Baker Bowl - sure he smartly took advantage, but others didn't have that opportunity. Still, I disagree with the conclusion of some that MLB teams didn't consider him good enough - much less that they'd have been right. The key for me is the half-season opportunity in 1908; even then he clearly was a quality major league hitter, so there's little reason not to significantly credit either 1907 or 1909-11. His work in his 30s is just outstanding, up there with some of the best ever. Comparison to Kiner is fascinating. With proper credits, better than Keller as well - barely.

JIMMY WYNN - Wildly underrated by baseball fans, and threatens to be just as wildly overrated here. I almost like Reggie Smith better, and surely Johnson, Cravath, Keller and Howard were just as good or better. Still, the OPS+s are undeniable, the fielding/position gives some boost, and I see him for now as one of the top 15 players on the ballot. Has not yet reached my ballot, but might next year.
DOBIE MOORE - Really seems to be palatable only for a pure-peak guy. Even at SS, I don't see how he can compete with a guy like Keller, for example, who is only in the teens for me right now.
CHARLEY JONES - Has made big leap in the voting of late, but I still don't quite see it. The suspension is an interesting mid-career turn, but lots of weird things went on in those days. I pretty much just look at what they did do, and I can't see putting Jones ahead of Johnson, Cravath, or Keller.
EDD ROUSH - The missing ABs per year really bother me about him, and yes I am adjusting re WW II. Reggie Smith is an interesting comp, and I like Reggie a tiny bit better even without a timeline. Hall of Very Good, lucky to be in the Hall of Fame.

FRANK HOWARD - My kind of player, with an astounding 170-177-170 OPS+ stretch from 1968-70, and averaged 690 PA in those three seasons! Four other OPS+s over 135.
BUCKY WALTERS - Nearly slipped back onto the ballot after missing last year; very borderline. Two best seasons were not war-related, so that helps me buy into the idea that he'd have had two more really good ones regardless. Really about a 130-140 ERA+ season or two short of my usual standard, but the pool is getting pretty thin.
THURMAN MUNSON - Don't overrate the "if only" bonus, because his career was near-done, especially as a catcher. But a very nice prime on some very good teams, and clearly he had a big part in that, also hit for a high avg in the postseason. Compares quite well with electee Freehan.
ELSTON HOWARD - I am troubled by the combo of shortened career plus durability issues, but I've decided he deserves more offbeat credit than Charley Jones does. Damn shame he caught in the wrong organization; not much reason for anyone to claim 'Yankee pride' when it comes to reviewing this case.
LUIS TIANT - Looks like he has the peak at first glance, but notice that the innings usually just aren't quite there. Plenty good when he did pitch, but with that lack of innings you have to be even more dominant. Maybe he winds up as the era's last P electee, not sure yet.
MICKEY WELCH - The Ws are great, but he hovered in the 3 to 5 ranking in IP when only a dozen or so guys were hurling serious innings. One outstanding, one excellent, one very good year ERA+-wise. The category is not a perfect tool out of that era, but the dominance also wasn't quite there.
   115. Jeff M Posted: November 23, 2006 at 04:30 PM (#2244699)
1990 Ballot

1. Morgan, Joe -- We knew he was good when we were kids, but we didn’t know how good. We just liked the arm flap. One of the all-time great infielders.

2. Jenkins, Ferguson – I would have elected him last time, over Yaz. Played on some bad teams with some bad uniforms (although I guess no worse than Perry on the uniform score). Handily beats Palmer on park-adjusted grey ink, and nudges him in most other adjusted categories.

3. Palmer, Jim – A consistent winner, but not always consistent performances. But three Cy Youngs? He’s a HoMer.

4. Oms, Alejandro – His closest comps appear to be Manush, Sisler and Wheat. All are already in the HoM and Oms played a more important defensive position than Sisler.

5. Jones, Charley – With all the extra credit given for minor league seasons, military service, etc., I finally broke down and gave Jones conservative credit for blacklisted seasons. He has been on my ballot every year even without the extra credit, and the extra credit didn’t change his ranking much.

6. Browning, Pete – He proved in the PL that he was no fluke. I don’t understand the arguments about his defense, since defense in the outfield really contributes little to the overall picture. Has been in my PHoM for most of the life of this project. How is it that Browning and Jones are only on 1/3 of the ballots?

7. Lyle, Sparky – I looked at the Adjusted Runs Prevented stats on Baseball Prospectus, and discovered that Lyle was a fantastic run preventer, in addition to his saves, and notwithstanding his ERA. Tough on me too, because I hated Lyle when I was a kid.

8. Roush, Edd -- 300+ WS; 100+ WARP1; normalized .322/.368/.444; good grey ink; and an above average defender in the outfield.

9. Wilson, Artie – A fine defensive shortstop who outhits the average hitter by about 20% has to be on the ballot.

10. Duffy, Hugh – A very good outfielder who hit approximately 40% better than the rest of the league. Duffy’s grey ink dips when you park adjust, but he still fares well overall. Not as good offensively as Billy Williams, but not as far behind as I would have thought. Given his position in the outfield, I rank him higher than Williams.

11. Dean, Dizzy -- Hard to get this high a ballot position with only five or so seasons, but Dean is the exception.

12. Cuyler, Kiki – Talk about under the radar. Take another look at Kiki. Most of his comps are HoMers. I’ve got him around.316/.380/.463 even after normalizing away some of those high league run scoring years.

13. Moore, Dobie – I think he is a notch below HoM level, but would have been a shoo-in with a few more years.

14. Long, Herman – From the dustbin, a 300+ aWS & 130+ aWARP1 shortstop.

15. Maranville, Rabbitt – Edges out Pie Traynor for the last ballot spot. Evidence that my system might treat Ozzie Smith right.

Required Disclosure(s):

Boyer, Ken – Has been on my ballot but slid off with reevaluations of a few more candidates from the backlog.

Wynn, Jimmy – Barely in my consideration set. Can’t give him much credit for being a centerfielder because he probably shouldn’t have been there. He seems like a candidate only for extreme peak voters, and even then it seems a stretch to consider him as a truly great player, even as a backlogger.

Fox, Nellie – Been on and off the ballot. He’s pretty much tied with Boyer.
   116. . . . . . . . . . . Posted: November 23, 2006 at 05:27 PM (#2244720)
Format: Player Name-Distinguishing Characteristic-Why not higher-Why not lower

1) J. Morgan-Best post WWII 2B-N/A-No other player on ballot top 3 alltime at position

2) C. Keller- 33 WARP in 3 seasons (yes, 1943 was a quasi-waryear)- Not as strong relative to other corner OF as Morgan was to 2B-Great peak AND great career, probably the only backlogger left like that.

3) D. Dean-Best pitcher alive for 3 years.- Immortal for 3 seasons - Immortal for 3 seasons

4) Fergie Jenkins- Very good, but not quite as good at his peak as Dean-I suspect that with the same defense behind them, Jenkins would be slightly better than Palmer

5) J. Palmer-Looked great in underwear- Dean was better at his peak, Jenkins was probably more effective once D-support is accounted for- Consistency..even if his true ERA+ was b/w 115 and 120, he's still worthy

6) A. Rosen- Had arguably the best 3B season of all-time, and it was no fluke- supershort career, shortest of all balloted players, and only gets minimal MiLB credit - better peak than any player below him, also played fine D.

7) E. Roush-N/A- Was CF really that valuble in deadball? Rosen was a better hitter and equivalent fielder, probably at a harder position- 3 consecutive years as top 3 hitter in the league with near-average defense in CF, no player below him had that kind of hitting peak at a D-position

8) E. Howard- Blocked, moved, token-ed by the Yankees - Supershort peak, definately not as good relative to position as Rosen- How many catchers have hit like Howard at his peak? How many of them aren't in the HOM? (probably Bresnahan)

9) T. Munson- Victim of homepark, vastly underrated by OPS+ - Howard was better- Munson may have been a 10-win player in his best 2 seasons in a neutral context, better than all catchers but Howard, better relative to other catchers than, say Cravath is to other corner OF

10) G. Cravath-Massive minor league credit - Home park is responsible for some of his value, so not in the vicinity of Keller - can't take off Ott credit for exploiting the Baker Bowl, and without a park correction would probably be in the top 5

11)K. Boyer- Underrated- Never hit like an HOMer - Defensive beast, I think the sum of his contributions in his prime was probably more valuble than Browning or Klein's one-dimensonal play

12) P. Browning- Loses many points for drunkeness - Negative contributions on everything but offense, league-quality and durability issues - May well have been Keller's equal as a pure hitter, not a home-park creation like Klein and Cravath

13) C. Klein-N/A- Baker Bowl demerits - Top 3 hitter in the NL for 3 consecutive years. Wynn was more inconsistent, as was Fox by dint of the high variance in defensive value.

14) B. Mazeroski- Best defensive 2B in baseball history- Couldn't hit a lick - Good lord, the man was worth 25-30 runs a year in the field!

15) N. Fox - N/A - Inconsistent, only mediocre hitter - Identical value to Maz, just 10 runs less in the field and 10 more at the plate
   117. . . . . . . . . . . Posted: November 23, 2006 at 05:29 PM (#2244721)

J. Wynn- #16, bumped off ballot because I elevated Maz to the ballot after reconsidering his value.

D. Moore- Prove to me that he's better than Chuck Klein.
   118. Jeff M Posted: November 24, 2006 at 12:27 AM (#2244843)
With the UA it's the other way around. 35 percent of value, 65 percent discount.

Wow. I'm no proponent of the UA, but bumping them down to around high school baseball is pretty extreme. Doesn't matter, though, since even a less drastic UA discount won't save Dunlap.

35% is a pretty deep discount for 1882 AA also, although that was a very weak year. By comparison, no minor league team would get that big a discount. Was the AA relatively worse to MLB at the time than the lowest minors are to MLB now? How is that possible, since the AA actually included some proven major league players, and low A ball does not?
   119. sunnyday2 Posted: November 24, 2006 at 01:53 AM (#2244856)
The AA discounts came from a list that somebody posted waaaay back when. I think the UA discount did too. I really don't remember.

But plug the discounts into WS for the players affected and you'll see that the results make them out to be pretty much the same players that they were in the NL. In Dunlap's case, eg., (and I'm going off the top of my head, this is really eg.) 17-36-16 WS becomes 17-18-16.

The AA discounts drops quickly, of course, and in '85 and '86 the discount is -0-. I have no idea what an A league would get today but 35 percent doesn't seem outrageous. I mean, applied to WS (not to HR and RBI and OBA and that kind of stuff).
   120. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 24, 2006 at 03:47 AM (#2244877)
I think the only UA guys worth worrying about are McCormick, Glasscock, and Dunlap anyway. Right? (Shaffer, maybe, but only if you're diggin' really deep and Bond was done by then).
   121. yest Posted: November 24, 2006 at 05:04 AM (#2244892)
Ruth wasn't a prophet
though Josh Gibson would be named after one

in response to the crypticness of my post thats in partly because I don't talk well through non direct contect

on to the baseball side of my post
I give a walk anywhere from a .65 - .85 of hit dependending on the, time (high or low scoring era)place (high or low scoring era)and teamates(a running team or not running team and obvisly I give a player who was walked to get to an easy out less value)based strictly on value and on some (also depending on circumstances of how ofen)walks I give less value due to being "pitchers eras"

one of the reaons I like putouts (middle infielfders mostly)(though not in all situations is because by it shows range and by it we can also aproximate how many times the player made a play that stoped the runners that typacly gets dismissed through normal fielding metrics)
   122. rdfc Posted: November 24, 2006 at 07:16 AM (#2244912)
I look at a lot of different statistical systems, read about the players, put all the info in my brain and then put my brain in the blender. Here is what comes out.

I rate everyday players against average players. Long average careers do nothing for me. But get to be a very good player for a long time and you get a lot of credit. Thus, the outfielders on my list.

Pitchers still have to be above average for my consideration but they don't have to be as above average as everyday players if they pitch lots of innings. I'll rate a +1 pitcher for 20 seasons over a +2 pitcher for 12 seasons; I won't do that for an everyday player

1. Joe Morgan - Inner circle, obviously. Far above everybody else

2. Dave Bancroft - Great defensive player, contributed with the bat, long career, and I don't care that he was in the NL

3. Jim Palmer - 4000 innings of great pitching

4. Bob Johnson - Very good outfielder with a medium length career

5. Jimmy Wynn - Same as 4. He and Dick Allen deserve credit for hitting during an era when few could. No, they weren't quite Mays, Mantle, or Aaron, but I haven't noticed any sign that candidates are expected to play at that level. I think 60-70s outfielders have been underrated as a result of Mays/Aaron/Robinson

6. Pete Browning - A great hitter in an age where they weren't very many of them

7. Reggie Smith - Same as 4 and especially 5

8. Ferguson Jenkins - 4500 innings of bringing home the canadian bacon. Not quite as dominant as the best of his generation, but more than good enough to be a clear cut choice

9. Roger Bresnehan - Great catchers with short careers get a boost from me

10. Dick Redding - Clearly deserving; don't know exactly where to rate him

11. Bobby Bonds - Another one of those outfielders

12. Jake Beckley - Not my type of career, but his overall production deserves respect.

13. Addie Joss - Short career, but an incredible short career. Clearly better than Dean or Tiant.

14. Urban Shocker - The Bob Johnson of starting pitchers.

15. Vic Willis - Somewhat similar career to Jenkins

16. Bucky Walters - Good hitting pitcher with a couple of phenomenal years and 3000+ innings

17. Norm Cash - Terrific player, but just below the line.

18. Burleigh Grimes - An early Don Sutton

19. Luis Tiant - A lot better than Catfish Hunter, and there are much better things to say about his career than that.

20. Don Newcombe - I do wonder if he deserves pioneer points

21. Dizzy Dean - Great but not quite as great as people think, and his career was really short.0

22. Charlie Keller - Close but not cigar. I don't give credit for war years

23, Ken Boyer - Very good third baseman, but not much to distinguish him from a lot of other players with similar careers

24. Jim Kaat - Very long career but not enough excellence

25. Ken Singleton - Very good underrated hitter, but not that underrated

26. Charley Jones - Obviously a very good player, but I don't usually give credit for years not played and it's not obvious to me that those years would have put him over the top

27. Smokey Joe Wood - Just not enough good years

Others Missing:

Nellie Fox - Too many of his peers were better hitters than he was, and he wasn't quite Mazeroski. May make my list sometime, but won't be near the top.

Dobie Moore - Great player but rather short career

Edd Roush - I remain skeptical about his defense.

Quincy Troup[p]e - I'm not prepared to rate him based on the available information.

Hugh Duffy - I'm not impressed at all.

Gavy Cravath - Career simply too short

Alejandro Oms - Looks like a Willie Wilson type player who held up somewhat better
   123. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 24, 2006 at 01:30 PM (#2244942)
Your ballot looks fine, rdfc. Welcome!
   124. Max Parkinson Posted: November 24, 2006 at 02:12 PM (#2244953)
one of the reaons I like putouts (middle infielfders mostly)(though not in all situations is because by it shows range and by it we can also aproximate how many times the player made a play that stoped the runners that typacly gets dismissed through normal fielding metrics)


I think that looking at putouts by middle infielders may be the absolute least effective way of judging defensive prowess at the position. Let's look at all of the different ways that a MIF can get a putout:

Line Drive:
Some skill (maybe?) in positioning, and a fractional percentage of skill on line drives that the fielder must lay out or jump for. Take every big league second basemen, hit 100 line drives in the vicinity of 2B, and I would be astonished if the variance in balls caught between the best and worst was more than 2 or 3. I don't believe that this indicates fielding ability any more than good fortune to be in the right place at the right time.

Almost entirely discretionary, in that for most balls, if one fielder doesn't call the ball, another will. Errors are almost never made by anyone - so very little variance there. Can even be a negative, where a MIF will range out to left-centre or right-centre to make a seemingly tough play, when the LF or RF could instead make the play easier (I'm looking right at you, Orlando Hudson!)

I'll grant you that on the very small subset of pop-ups down each foul line, some MIFs are excellent at getting there, when neither a 1B or LF/RF has a chance. Examples of excellence in this area are Jeter, Hudson and Alomar - however I have to note that those three are noted for playing "out of position", Jeter more towards the line than a normal SS, and Alomar and Hudson much deeper and towards the line than a normal 2B. One is forced to wonder if the reason that they can get to the tough pop-ups is that they're closer to them to begin with. Also, given that a majority of these balls not caught will be foul balls, and not hits, the impact of a play not made is not as significant as a ground ball up the middle. If MIFs that play away from the line are making the trade of foul-ball pop-ups vs. stopping a hit up the middle (Hello Mr. Jeter), I question the trade...

Infield Putout (particularly on DPs):
This may be the weakest of all types of balls in determining skill. On a double play ball, the front half of the play is made almost all of the time - the Skill for a Middle Infielder is the TURN, which gets a MIF an Assist, not a Putout!

When the front half of the play is not made (the putout), it is almost always the fault of the throw. This is because every middle infielder is taught from grade school that the first out is the important one. If the throw is not perfect, a middle infielder will act like a 1B, stretching out to catch the ball, while holding their foot to the bag - or in an extreme situation with a terrible throw and a very slow runner, come off the bag for the ball, and then touch it. Every major-league caliber MIF will get to the bag in time for the putout. If they can't fulfill that basic skill, they become a 1B or LF if they can hit, or unemployed if they can't.

So you can see that given the same number of double play balls, an excellent MIF will have exactly the same number of putouts as a poor one.

The skill (particularly for 2Bs, who are there in the first place because they have a weaker arm than the guy who plays 50 feet to their right) is displayed in the number of assists/DPs. Every MIF can make the turn, when given a perfect feed. Hell, I'm left-handed, and I could make the turn on most big-leaguers if I was given a perfect feed. But we know from watching games that very few of the feeds (even at that level) are perfect. Maybe the 3B took a couple of seconds getting the ball out of his glove, maybe the 3B or SS caught a seam, and the ball ended up on the LF side of second, rather than the 1B side, maybe the throw was rushed 'cause they know that the hitter can fly...

It's in these situations that a good MIF is quick enough on the turn to complete the DP, and a poor one is not. Most casual fans don't even see it - they assume that the runner was just too quick, or that the play couldn't be made by anybody - when the MIF has a slow turn. I'm convinced that turns not made have one of the most underestimated impacts to run-prevention. I've seen it too many times - a double-play ball is rolled out (especially when it's 1st and 3rd or loaded), and the runner beats the play by a hair. Should be inning over, but instead a run's on the board. You can see it all of the time on the pitcher's face: "####! I got you guys the double-play ball, and you couldn't even make the goddamned turn!" He then goes on to give up a walk and a double, and you've given up 4 instead of none. The odds on seeing it on the pitcher's face increase dramatically when the pitcher is Derek Lowe.

In two-out situations, a MIF getting the putout at second is entirely discretionary. If the other MIF feels like going to 2, he will. If he feels like going to first, he'll do that. Again, all SS and 2Bs will be at the bag in time, so looking at that type of putout says nothing of their skill.

Caught Stealing:
This is the last one. Of the three people involved in the play - the pitcher (Hold), the catcher (catch/release), and the MIF (catch/apply tag) - I don't think that I'm rattling many cages when I say that the MIF has by far the least to do with the outcome of the play. A putout will occur if the Hold and/or Throw are good, and no putout will occur if both are poor. The times when a tag makes the difference between safe and out are so few as to be non-existent. I will admit that there is a modicum of skill in reaching the bag early, but if it only makes a difference on a handful of all of the SB attempts over the course of a year, do you feel that looking at putouts here is at all instructive on skill?

To sum up - if you want to look at Assists to measure Middle Infielder skill, I have no quarrel with you, as I'm sure that you would do at least ballpark adjustments for chances.

But your statements that putouts show range, and/or that they can display a play made (above an average MIF, in this context) are just demonstrably false.
   125. Daryn Posted: November 24, 2006 at 02:51 PM (#2244961)
Not that I use putouts, but to respond to Max: Putouts measure one thing -- outs recorded by the person making the putout. Whether it is by skill, ability or luck, that person is achieving the outs -- the seminal unit of goodness for the defense. It may be just through dint of opportunity, but if a player happened to play behind a pitching staff that led to twice as many putout opportunities and therefore recorded twice as many putouts (as you say, putouts are almost always made if the opportunity arises) he is adding more value than someone who never makes a putout because his pitcher strikes out 25 batters a game.

Similarly for assists -- if Ozzie Smith played behind an all K/FB pitching staff his value would be much less than his value if he played behind a staff of Chien Ming Wangs.
   126. Jeff M Posted: November 24, 2006 at 02:53 PM (#2244962)
The AA discounts drops quickly, of course, and in '85 and '86 the discount is -0-. I have no idea what an A league would get today but 35 percent doesn't seem outrageous. I mean, applied to WS (not to HR and RBI and OBA and that kind of stuff).

I understand better now...since you are applying the discount to WS, and not the raw stats.

The biggest discount I've seen for minor league raw stats is 28-30%, and I've used that as a "floor" for my alternative league discounts. I don't have a sense how that translates to a WS discount, though. Guess I could test it by applying the discounts to the raw stats, and then finding comparables in MLB players.
   127. Max Parkinson Posted: November 24, 2006 at 03:20 PM (#2244970)

re: Ozzie

No doubt, which is why I included the line, "I have no quarrel with you, as I'm sure that you would do at least ballpark adjustments for chances". One needs to factor in chances.

re: the first paragraph

My (altogther too long, I'm sure) diatribe was specifically against using putouts for MIFs. As I displayed, almost all of the putouts made by MIFs are either discretionary or evidence of only the bare minimum of athletic qualification to play the position. I don't believe that either of those options display added value.

Recording a putout is better than not recording a putout, sure. However, it's not like a manager has an option to not put 7 defenders in fair territory (and not on the rubber), so where's the baseline? It's the MIF example of the Stengelism: "It's good to have a catcher, 'cause otherwise there'd be a lot of passed balls." My point is that if you went with only a 2B, and no SS, your overall MIF putouts wouldn't change by very much. Can you say that about any other position?

Additionally, my point was that number of putouts have nothing to do with the quality of defensive player. Nothing. It's really difficult to say that about assists. You can take the league leader in assists, and say that he's not the best, because he got so many darn chances. But it would be very rare for a league leader in assists to be a BAD fielder. Contrast with putouts - there's every reason to believe that one of the worst defensive MIFs in the game could lead a league in putouts.

There are tons of ways to measure value for an infielder (particularly if you believe that value is best shown in performing above some level, be it the bare minimum of competence, or average), I just don't see how examining putouts is one of those ways.
   128. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 24, 2006 at 03:55 PM (#2244979)
Additionally, my point was that number of putouts have nothing to do with the quality of defensive player.

This is an overstatement. It's not that putouts have *nothing* to do with the quality of a MIF; it's that they don't have a lot to do with quality. Consistently leading the league in putouts (which seems to be how yest is evaluating putouts, if I'm reading him right - not just *has lots of them*, but *leads the league*) is an indicator of quality defense. But I wouldn't rely on it by itself, or even as a major factor, for evaluating MIFs - or for that matter, any infield position.

-- MWE
   129. Max Parkinson Posted: November 24, 2006 at 04:15 PM (#2244986)

A quick hypothetical. You have a veteran SS who's a terrible defender, and a rookie 2B who's spectacular.

It's probable that the SS ends up with more putouts. Not just possible, but probable. The SS will call his own number on bag coverage, rather than defer to the rookie. The rookie will get to more balls with runners on base, boosting the SS's DP putouts, while the SS will not get to a ton of ground balls in DP situations, depressing the 2B's putouts. Lastly, on all pop-ups that either can get to (I'm pulling this out of my ass, but 75-85%?), the rookie will defer to the veteran.

Don't you agree that total number of putouts would be misleading as to fielding quality? Counting up assists would lead to a very different impression of fielding prowess, allowing for the exception of the pitching staff being extremely LH-tilted.
   130. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 24, 2006 at 05:18 PM (#2245004)
It's probable that the SS ends up with more putouts. Not just possible, but probable. The SS will call his own number on bag coverage, rather than defer to the rookie. The rookie will get to more balls with runners on base, boosting the SS's DP putouts, while the SS will not get to a ton of ground balls in DP situations, depressing the 2B's putouts. Lastly, on all pop-ups that either can get to (I'm pulling this out of my ass, but 75-85%?), the rookie will defer to the veteran.

There aren't as many discretionary plays around 2B as you might think.

Most popups really aren't discretionary. It might "seem" as though multiple players can make the play, but in practice, the player with the best angle on it makes the play; it's a rare occasion when a player with a bad angle calls off a player with a good angle. On a popup into shallow CF, the only time it would really be discretionary is when the ball is equidistant from the SS and 2B (so that both have the same angle on the ball). The more that a player has to move directly backwards to make a play, the worse his angle and the less likely he is to actually make the play when competing with a fielder coming at it from the side.

The player who covers on a steal is predefined by the infield alignment, which is normally dependent on batter handedness; the player with the shorter distance to the bag is the one who covers, unless the team expects a sacrifice attempt, in which case the SS always covers.

The range factor is an "it depends" kind of thing. Against RHB, if the 2B's extra range is toward the bag, some percentage of those extra plays will be unassisted force plays (because there won't be time to make a flip). Against LHB, if his range is toward first, some percentage of those extra plays will go 4-3 rather than 4-6 (because there won't be time to make the play at 2B).

So I'm not at all convinced that the putout totals would end up being misleading over a period of years. I would probably expect to see both players with higher putout totals for a season or two than the 2B/SS combo before the 2B came up, but I wouldn't expect the SS to suddenly have a league-leading putout total because of the 2B, nor would I expect him to sustain that putout total as the 2B gained experience.

Again, I'm focusing on how yest (as I read him) is actually using putout totals. In individual seasons, I can certainly see how putout totals can misrepresent value - just as other single-season stats, such as pitcher W/L record, can misrepresent value. But when you use them over a career, and use them in very restricted ways (e.g. league-leading totals), then they *do* have meaning.

-- MWE
   131. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 24, 2006 at 05:56 PM (#2245011)
yest, thanks for explaining your thinking.

It may be just through dint of opportunity, but if a player happened to play behind a pitching staff that led to twice as many putout opportunities and therefore recorded twice as many putouts (as you say, putouts are almost always made if the opportunity arises) he is adding more value than someone who never makes a putout because his pitcher strikes out 25 batters a game.

Similarly for assists -- if Ozzie Smith played behind an all K/FB pitching staff his value would be much less than his value if he played behind a staff of Chien Ming Wangs.


I'm not certain this makes theoretical sense. When you consider the defense as a whole, the SS who makes 0 putouts on a K-only or K/FB staff loses no value compared to his teammates (or to his infield teammates in the latter situation), and once the adjustment for the GB/FB tendencies, he should come out as essentially average. (Granted zero putouts on GBs is the example of an extreme example that's not only impossible but also doesn't do much to help prove the other 99.9999999999% of cases since there's that pesky division-by-zero issue in play.)

In terms of the Ozzie example, his absolute value may be diminished on a staff with fewer ground balls in play, but his relative value should remain equivalent if he were on a staff of David Wellses because when adjusted for opportunity, he should still be picking the same relative percentage of grounders off the carpet. At least, I think so....

Anyway, the point being that if you think of it at the team level the distribution of outs across the defense can be extremely misleading vis the number of putouts for an individual player when thought of within the team context (including pitching run prevention) when any or a combo of these things are true:
1) team has very few putouts or assists relative to league since its pitchers K a ton of guys
2a) team has very few infield assists relative to their putouts compared to the average team becaue they generate a ton of flyballs
2b) team has very few outfield putouts relative to their infield assists compared to the average team because they generate a ton of groudners
3) team has many extra puouts or assists because their pitchers pitch to contact
4) the team plays an unusual number of games where they defend in the ninth or do not defened in the ninth (about 14 such games above expectation would increase their total outs by 1%)
5) the team's park's outfield in unusually large or small, driving its OF putouts up/down
6) the team's park's foul territory is small, suppressing popouts and presumably decreasing strikeouts (due to deeper pitcher's counts) or large, increasing popouts and reducing deep pitcher's counts
7) the team's pitchers are unusually unbalanced to the portside or the right side, tilting putouts and assists toward one side of the field.

The Cubs of recent vintage are an interestig example of several oft these phenomena. I did some very rough estimates that suggest their rate of OF POs is suppressed by like 5-6% by the team's K rate alone. In addition, 80% of their 2005 innings were thrown by righties, versus 74% for the other 15 teams. It's not easy to disentangle what that means, but here's some interesting numbers:
PO rates for Cubs OFs2005

/9  tm   lg   lg tm  
          OF PO  PO
/9   OF PO
LF   1.65   .28   1.88   .29
CF   2.23   .38   2.46   .39
RF   1.98   .34   2.04   .32 

First off, it's very interesting that in the NL of 2005, RFs caught more flyballs than LFs. But what's going on with the Cubs? Well, they are making 8% fewer OF plays as a team per game than the league, but they tilt even more toward RF than the league. That's got to be the Ks and the right-leaning staff. In fact, when you K adjust them, they are much closer to average, making 2.2% fewer POs/9 as a unit. When you think on it, that's a pretty big swing.

Turning to the infield.... If we remove the K/CS/PKOs from the record first and then figure the IF POs, the Cubs make 13 plays per nine, and the league makes 13.7, a difference of 5.1%. Adjusting for the Ks, the Cubs now make 13.8 plays per nine, .1 plays above the league average. How do the Cubs righties effect the distribution of POs on the infield defense?

Distribution of POs in Cubs 2005 infield (1B excluded)

POS  PO/9  tm   lg   lg tm  
2B   1.87  .46   2.05    .47
3B   0.61  .15   0.75    .17
SS   1.56  .39   1.54    .36 

We see a very similar pattern here. Cubs 3Bs were last in PO/G tied for second to last in the league in the % of their team's IF POs. The Cubs SS (mostly Neifi and Nomar, I guess) were a little above average in PO/9, and a little better than that in the % of POs they handled within their own IF. Cubs 2Bs handled almost 20% fewer POs, yet were within a hair of being league average in what percent of the team's IF POs they handled. In other words, the POs shifted from 3B to 2B and to some degree toward SS as well. It's speculation to say that's the righthandedness of the staff, but since we saw the same thing in the team's OF, it seems logical.

Anyway, I'm delving into this (and this is somewhat similar to ground that Bill James covered in WS the book, I think) only to flesh out why unadjusted POs are not terribly helpful in seeing who was actually a good defender. They tend to be correlated with a lot of other noisy stuff. I think this is mostly accepted wisdom, but since yest's system is in question, I'm thinking it's possibly useful information.

But here's the big question for yest:

How much value do your rankings put on POs? It must be very, very high, right? How did you determine that value?
   132. yest Posted: November 24, 2006 at 06:06 PM (#2245014)
your reading me wrong I didn't say that someone leading the leauge in putouts is the only way to judge or that I only look at leading the leauge (like most of my other comment on the ballot I just mention the leaders because it's conveniont) and it's not possible for the guy who finishes second or third not to have been better in range and I do look at assits almost as much as putouts and I do adjust for high putout rates when i actualy have evadince that the player was calling off other fielders (see Lajoie) and not just based on conjuctre also the amount of times that a player calls someone else off when it happens dosn't account for that many of a player putouts though it might in some cases take some to the top but that would be the rarity

Line Drive:
Some skill (maybe?) in positioning, and a fractional percentage of skill on line drives that the fielder must lay out or jump for. Take every big league second basemen, hit 100 line drives in the vicinity of 2B, and I would be astonished if the variance in balls caught between the best and worst was more than 2 or 3. I don't believe that this indicates fielding ability any more than good fortune to be in the right place at the right time.

this where I think your wrong as a spectator I see certian players always seem to position them selves right to make the play and also some players can get a few feet further then other players both of which were true for Fox and Maz.
   133. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: November 24, 2006 at 06:12 PM (#2245018)

Can you give an explanation as to why you don't give any war credit? I think this is something you need to look over or risk underrating an entire generation. Acutally its more of a certainty than a risk actually.
   134. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 24, 2006 at 06:50 PM (#2245033)
Can you give an explanation as to why you don't give any war credit? I think this is something you need to look over or risk underrating an entire generation. Acutally its more of a certainty than a risk actually.

I agree with you, Mark. I missed that when I reviewed rdfc's ballot.
   135. Daryn Posted: November 24, 2006 at 07:04 PM (#2245042)
In terms of the Ozzie example, his absolute value may be diminished on a staff with fewer ground balls in play, but his relative value should remain equivalent if he were on a staff of David Wellses because when adjusted for opportunity, he should still be picking the same relative percentage of grounders off the carpet. At least, I think so....

That is obviously true, but what I am saying is that measuring things by absolute value rather than relative value is a defensible position.
   136. Max Parkinson Posted: November 24, 2006 at 07:08 PM (#2245045)

The player who covers on a steal is predefined by the infield alignment, which is normally dependent on batter handedness; the player with the shorter distance to the bag is the one who covers, unless the team expects a sacrifice attempt, in which case the SS always covers.

I'm sure I'm telling you things you already know, but there's more to it than that - particularly the propensity of teams to flip coverage in certain counts, or any time a H&R is expected.

I think that we're on the same page as to the over time thing.

I stand by the thought that high number of putouts are less meaningful on its face than high number of assists in judging a fielder's quality (noting of course that both need to be adjusted for opportunites et al)


We'll just disagree as to the ability of putouts to guage fielding acumen.
   137. Daryn Posted: November 24, 2006 at 07:09 PM (#2245046)
Another way of looking at it is that we all agree that if you put Darin Erstad at firstbase his value and absolute value to the team drops, arguably through no fault of his own (setting aside his injury proneness). His ability is still there but his opportunities are not. So if Ozzie had a season where no one hit the ball to him in the middle of his career, he arguably shoud be entitled to no defensive "points" that year even if he would have been as great as ever as a fielder.
   138. Max Parkinson Posted: November 24, 2006 at 07:16 PM (#2245051)

All true.
   139. sunnyday2 Posted: November 24, 2006 at 09:39 PM (#2245155)
>Can you give an explanation as to why you don't give any war credit?

>>I agree with you, Mark. I missed that when I reviewed rdfc's ballot.

Well, then there's also this.

>>>Quincy Troup[p]e - I'm not prepared to rate him based on the available information.

What if I'm not prepared to rate relief pitchers based on our current knowledge of the art, or maybe I'm not prepared to give any consideration for defense?
   140. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 24, 2006 at 09:58 PM (#2245166)
>>>Quincy Troup[p]e - I'm not prepared to rate him based on the available information.

What if I'm not prepared to rate relief pitchers based on our current knowledge of the art, or maybe I'm not prepared to give any consideration for defense?

I took his comments as, based on his MLEs, Trouppe still wasn't worthy. Since he likes Redding, I don't think it's a reluctance to vote for NeLers, but another post by him would certainly help to clarify his position.
   141. EricC Posted: November 24, 2006 at 10:15 PM (#2245178)
1990 ballot.

1. Joe Morgan Greatest 2B of all time; among top 20 players. All-star quality 2B almost every year 1965-1977; MVP level every year 1973-1976.

2. Wally Schang Generally all-star level of play at C 1913-1920; one of better catchers for most of long career afterwards; career leader in WS among C upon retirement.

3. Jim Palmer Ace-quality pitching, on average, for the decade 1969-1978. Generally average to above average the rest of his career, building the career totals. Top 10 most similar eligible pitchers, as I see it, are all elected, except for....

4. Fergie Jenkins , but not for long.

5. Charlie Keller Consistent all-star to MVP level of play at corner OF 1939-1947, with a peak that looks as high and more sustained to me than Kiner's did. Believe that his peak would have been maintained during WWII and thus give war credit.

6. Nellie Fox Consistently among better 2B 1951-1960; lots of padding of career stats outside these years. Has enough peak/prime to make him tolerable to some peak/prime voters, that, as well as being a 1950s IF, helps to boost his chance of eventual election.

7. Orlando Cepeda Among better 1B most of years during 1959-1967 and occasionally all-star level; career totals padded 1968-1974. Cepeda, Cash, and F. Howard are a set of near-exact contemporary "bat" candidates who played in the 1960s, a tricky era in which to judge the potential bottom-half-of-the-HoM "bats". I feel that Cepeda, in particular, deserves a careful look, especially when 60s NL strength is taken into account.

8. Norm Cash Among better 1B most seasons 1960-1971, and occasional all-star level. More consistent than Cepeda, but less playing time per season.

9. Mickey Vernon Did have some all-star type seasons at 1B, but basically a "career" candidate all the way. Credit for two years missed to WWII, and belief that pre-expansion 1950s baseball had some of the toughest competiton of all time. Among top contenders for "Hall of Fame chance hurt by WWII", as listed in Bill James' NBJHBA.

10. Reggie Smith Among better RF most years during the 1970s; respectable career totals; played CF in addition to RF.

11. Elston Howard Multiple years of all star play at catcher; 1961-1964 "workload" also noteworthy. A peak that few catchers have attained, but very little outside the peak.

12. Ken Singleton Multiple all star-type seasons 1975-1979; MVP level 1977 season. Very durable in 1972-1983 prime; not much outside this. List of most similar players suggests that he will not make it to the HoM easily, if at all.

13. Gene Tenace Consistent, high secondary average, run producing catcher. Though he appears to rate below the de facto consensus in/out line for catchers, I would PHoM him beacuse I rate catchers higher than most.

14. Jimmy Wynn Multiple years of all-star quality CF play. Sabermetric poster child- 0.250 BA, but played a defensive position, had a 0.400ish secondary average, and played in a pitcher's era.

15. Sol White Star-quality middle-infielder, mainly 2B, with long career late 1880s to mid 1900s. Unfortuately, too much of his record is lost to know how accurate this rating is.

Top 10 returnees Boyer, Jones, and Beckley, were all very good players who have been on my ballot in the past.
Among NeLers, I would prefer Lundy to Moore.
Edd Roush played in a weak league at a time when there were a lot of great CF.
Pete Browning is to the HoM in some ways what Hack Wilson is to the HoF: some shiny numbers that were as much a product of the times as of greatness; a player from an overrepresented era with a lot of negatives. Charley Jones, Beckley, Duffy, McGraw, Ryan, and Van Haltren, of the less-well-represented 1890s (1870s in Jones' case) would all be better 19th C. choices.
   142. OCF Posted: November 24, 2006 at 11:34 PM (#2245222)
To allude to a debate that I was on the losing side of many "years" ago: those big range factors that Hughie Jennings had at SS were putout-heavy.
   143. rdfc Posted: November 25, 2006 at 02:21 AM (#2245303)
Mark - Simply put, I don't want to give anybody credit for something that didn't happen. I don't view time missed due to war any different than time missed due to injury or time missed due to labor action.

I view giving credit for what ifs as dangerous. Some of these players who missed time due to the war may have also missed sustaining career ending injuries and thus had a better career than they would have had without the war. A pitchers' arm may be saved by getting a year off. Its all speculation, and I prefer not to speculate.

This does not apply to Negro Leaguers or players stuck in the minors because they were actually playing. A few players may actually have played for military teams during a war, and I'd be willing to look at those numbers if they exist. But I don't believe in counting what might have been.

I do judge players in the context of their generation, so I probably indirectly take into account some of the effects of the war, but I won't do it directly.

Note that I also don't like to adjust for what a player might have done in another home park, because that too, is speculative. Instead, I focus just on what the value of what he actually did in his real home park.

And now, I gotta get back to updating the encyclopedia.
   144. sunnyday2 Posted: November 25, 2006 at 05:37 AM (#2245397)
Wow. Minor league credit but no war credit. I think you're the only voter who does that!
   145. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: November 25, 2006 at 07:50 AM (#2245432)

A few points of disagreement. 1) Those who missed time because of WWII were either a) playing baseball or b) fighting a war. Both of these options were at least as dangerous are playing MLB baseball and therefore I do not think that you can speculate that players would have had career shortening injurines (pitchers are slightly different). Anyone who would have had these injuries would have had them in the service. I don't think this argument is valid. 2) time missed due to war is different to time missed due to injury because time missed due to WWII is more dependent on when you were born than any freak inury that may happen. Players missed time due to WWII because they were of an age to get drafted more than any decision made of their own. To now account for this would underrate an entire generation (Which we have done to this point, i.e. Sewell v. Rizzuto). 3) More than a few players were playing for military teams, in fact I would say that 80% were and the rest were fighting a war. This isn't speculative it should be required. Do you do discounts for those who were playing in the weakended leagues during this period? If not you should really have to look at this before your ballot is accepted.

Honestly, i wish that Joe would have made us factor in war credit to vote, because I find those that don't give war credit or either a) underrating an entire generation because they dont' want to deal with anything speculative (unfair) or b) not giving players credit because they dont' agree with war (unfair to the extreme).
   146. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 25, 2006 at 08:44 AM (#2245442)
What, my ballot in before Monday? Really? I'll be out of town until Wednesday, so I'm sending it in early this week . . .

Since some people asked us to include what we consider . . . I try to look at it all. I'm a career voter mostly - not because I have any bias towards it, but just because the numbers (and every study I've ever seen) tell me that peaks are overrated and 5+5 is only about 10-15% less valuable than 10+0.

I give full war credit, and I think it's a major mistake not to when comparing players across eras. My biggest regret on this project is that we didn't require all voters to give war credit like we did with Negro League credit. I see no difference, both were a circumstance of the player's birthday that was beyond his control. I also follow similar philosophy on strikes. I think it's a cop out to say we don't know so it's a zero. If a guy was a 25 WS a year player before and after the war, a zero is a much bigger mistake than giving him three 25s. As far as injury you just credit a guy based on his playing time before and after the war. There's no reason to assume he would have been any more (or less) injury prone during those years.

I'll give minor league credit for players trapped - once they've had a 'here I am, let me play!' season.

Of late I've been much more hands on in rating the pitchers than the position players. I'm very confident in my pitcher rankings. My position player rankings I'm less confident in, but there are only so many hours in the day, and because of that you'll see more position players moving around from week to week than pitchers.

Here goes:

1. Joe Morgan 2B (n/e) - In my opinion the greatest 2B that ever lived. Definitely for peak, and I think so for career also. That's with zero BS dump too. My numbers get him at 199, Collins at 196 and Hornsby at 190. Morgan ends up ahead of the others because 2B were much worse as hitters in his time than in Collins' or Hornsby's.

2. Ferguson Jenkins SP (4) - I have him between Drysdale and Ford. I'll take his career and his peak over Palmer's. The two are a very intersting duo to compare based on context. He's quite similar to Ford, except that 1) Jenkins had a much better year in 1971 than Ford ever did; 2) Jenkins threw 650 extra translated IP at basically replacement level.

3. Jim Palmer SP (n/e) - Great pitcher, but somewhat overrated. His defenses were incredible and his leagues weak. His park also helped him a lot - his career park factor of 96.3 is one of the lowest I've found. Jenkins' career park factor was one of the highest, 105.2. I have him more in line with Bunning, Faber and Marichal.

4. Gavy Cravath RF (5) - Either he was a freak of nature, or there's a lot missing. I vote for the latter. Check out his thread for deeper discussion of the specifics, including a great analysis from Gadfly. He's the kind of guy we were hoping to catch when we started this project.

5. Jack Quinn SP (6) - I'm giving him credit for 1916-18 where he was pitching (quite well) in the PCL after the Federal League went belly-up. He gets a big leverage bonus for his nearly 800 IP of relief work at a LI of 1.26. Without any PCL credit I still have him between Bridges and Grimes.

6. Charley Jones LF (7) - A superstar of the early NL/AA. I give full credit for his contract debacle / blacklisting, which I consider a product of his timeframe, and not something that would hinder any modern player.

7. Urban Shocker SP (8) - Vaulted in 1981, with 1918 war credit (he was having a great year), and an adjustment for the AL being much better than the NL during his time. He was a great pitcher, peak guys should really look closer at him. He'd be a no brainer without his illness, which should not impact a peak vote.

8. Tommy Bridges SP (9) - Unspectacular peak (although he would have won the 1936 AL Cy Young Award if it had been invented), but a lot of career value. War credit helps nudge him above Trout and Leonard. He could obviously still pitch when he left for the war, and was still good when he returned for a short time. I give him 2 years of credit at his 1941-43 level.

9. Jake Beckley 1B (10) - I still fully endorse his election. A smidge below Rafael Palmeiro, they were basically the same player, though Palmeiro was a little bit better with the stick, 1B was much tougher in Beckley's day. The average 1B had just a .531 OWP during his career, Beckley was .596, played good, though not great defense (+67 FRAA according to WARP) and played for nearly 20 years. The Ted Lyons, Red Faber or Red Ruffing of 1B. There's just so much career value here. Too much to ignore.

10. Charlie Keller LF (11) - Gave him minor league credit for 1938, when he was clearly major league quality, and I threw in war credit. He comes out way ahead of Kiner once I do this.

11. Thurman Munson C (12) - Better than I realized - just a hair behind Freehan. Better career D, better career O, but Freehan played more and had the higher peak. Very, very close.

12. Wally Schang C (13) - Basically the best MLB catcher between Bresnahan and Cochrane/Hartnett. As valuable a hitter as Campanella or Bennett. Defense questionable, only thing keeping him from the #7 spot on this ballot.

13. Ben Taylor 1B (14) - Consider me convinced that he was really was a great hitter. I was underrating him.

14. Pie Traynor 3B (22) - The more I look, the more I think we missed on this one. He gets another bump this week. I don't agree with rating Boyer above him. Traynor far outhit his 3B peers relative to Boyer and his.

15. Dave Bancroft SS (16) - Let's see. You've got a SS with a .498 OWP, during an era where the average SS has a .414 OWP. He's also one of the 15 most valuable defensive shortstops in history to this point. He had a reasonably long career as well, though his in-season durability wasn't great. Think that's a valuable player? I do.

Honorable Mention:

16. Jim Fregosi SS (17) - I like middle infielders that can hit.

17. Burleigh Grimes SP (18) - Faced pretty steep competition (.520 RSI), so his 256-226 RSI and 107 ERA+ understates his record somewhat. I wouldn't be against his election at this point - his hitting puts him over the top. Did very well with my re-tooled system.

18. Norm Cash 1B (15) - Wow, history books, where have you been hiding this guy? .671 career OWP! +109 fielding runs! That puts his defense at a level with Roger Connor, George Kelly and Frank McCormick among the all-time greats. He has more FRAA than Vic Power, for example.

19. Dobie Moore SS (19) - Tough to get right, but I'm feeling a little more peaky this time around.

20. Roger Bresnahan C/OF (20) - Great hitter / catcher = tough combination to overlook.

21. Quincy Trouppe C (21) - Convince me that I should have him higher than Bresnahan . . . not being sarcastic.

22. Phil Rizzuto SS (23) - Lost 3 prime years to WWII. Great defense, and a huge year in 1950 also.

23. Don Newcombe SP (24) - Gets color-line and Korea credit.

24. Cecil Travis SS (25) - Career destroyed by WWII. I'm comfortable with projecting his 1942-45 at a high enough level to get him here.

25. Tony Lazzeri 2B (26) - Great hitter for a 2B. Short career and fielding keep him from being higher.

26. Waite Hoyt SP (27) - Peak is nothing special, but good pitcher for a long time.

27. Bucky Walters SP (28) - Big years, good hitter for a pitcher, career kind of short though.

28. Bob Johnson LF (29) - Overlooked star, not much difference between Johnson and Medwick.

29. Jimmy Wynn CF (30) - I thought I'd have him higher. Man this ballot is jammed with great players.

30. Bert Campaneris SS (31) - He would be much higher if I only compared him to his peers. SS didn't hit at all when he played (average OWP for SS during his career was .370). I split the difference and here is where he ends up. I could see moving him higher.

31. Ken Singleton RF (n/e) - I've got him as very similar to Henrich. Singleton lasted longer (ever after accounting for the war), but Henrich was a much better fielder. Henrich had more power and Singleton more OBP. But when you add it all up, their overall value was quite similar.

32. Tommy Henrich RF (32) - Very underrated, gets a ton of war credit.

33. Nellie Fox 2B (33) - Long solid career at a key position.

34. Luis Tiant SP (34) - Very nice career. Could see ranking him a little higher.

35. Ken Boyer 3B (--) - I've moved him up some, but I don't think he's anywhere near the class of the backlog.

36. Gene Tenace C/1B (35) - Could go higher than this, just a machine as a hitter, and 900 games caught. Kind of a poor man's Joe Torre.

37. Alejandro Oms OF (36) - Pretty good hitter, conservative ranking, I really don't have a handle on him.

38. Reggie Smith OF (37) - Very good player, but missed a lot of time in his good years. Only played 150 games 3 times.

39. Dick Redding SP (38) - I'm just not seeing what everyone else does for some reason.

40. Dutch Leonard SP (39) - Pretty good pitcher at his best. Never had the one huge year, but had a bunch of very good ones.

41. John McGraw 3B (40) - If only he could have stayed in the lineup more.

Amos Otis - nice ballplayer, but I can't get him on this list.

Tug McGraw - pretty underrated historically, I've got him essentially tied with Lindy McDaniel, which is to say only Wilhelm and Stu Miller are better among eligible relievers. I've got him ahead of Tekulve, Hiller, Face, Marshall and Quisenberry. Can't get him on the ballot, but he's closer than you'd think. He was more valuable than Addie Joss, for example.
   147. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 25, 2006 at 08:45 AM (#2245443)
   148. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 25, 2006 at 08:47 AM (#2245444)
Just an FYI Monty I give credit for Korea (and Vietnam and WWI) also. There are quite a few players that get Korea credit, many more than I would have realized before starting this.
   149. rdfc Posted: November 25, 2006 at 10:44 AM (#2245455)
Mark - Do you do discounts for those who were playing in the weakended leagues during this period?

Absolutely, no question about it.

Honestly, i wish that Joe would have made us factor in war credit to vote, because I find those that don't give war credit or either a) underrating an entire generation because they dont' want to deal with anything speculative (unfair)

Well, I think it's unfair to give players credit for imaginary accomplishments. And it's not that I don't want to deal with speculation, I think it's just plain wrong to do so to any great extent. It offends my sense of fairness.

Take what Monty suggested - what if these players had missed ten years because of the war? Would you still want to give them credit for those missing years? What if they had missed 20 years? Should we still put those players in because otherwise their generation would be underrepresented? I think that would be ludicrous.

By the way, it's not that I don't think it's interesting to speculate. I want to have the information of who missed time during the war available; that's why there's a mark in the biographical entry of every player who missed time because of WWII. I'm still trying to get a list of those who missed time as a result of being in the National Guard during Vietnam. But understanding what might have been is different than giving credit for it.

If Pat Tillman projects out to be an all-time great football player with another 5 years, would he deserve entry to the NFL Meritocratic Society?
   150. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 25, 2006 at 11:45 AM (#2245457)
"Take what Monty suggested - what if these players had missed ten years because of the war? Would you still want to give them credit for those missing years? What if they had missed 20 years? Should we still put those players in because otherwise their generation would be underrepresented? I think that would be ludicrous."

If they had missed 20 years then we'd have nothing to go on.

But they didn't miss 20 years. They missed 3 or 4 years. We have a very good idea of what they would have done.

At the very least, the bare minimum, when comparing a player that missed time due to the war, to another player that didn't, I remove the seasons from the same age of the player that didn't miss the time.

As far as Pat Tillman, I would say yes, if he were that good.
   151. sunnyday2 Posted: November 25, 2006 at 12:59 PM (#2245462)

Do you adjust season length? There are those 19th century guys who only played 80 games...and whole generations of guys who played 154. Then in the NeLs they played as few as 30-40 games some years. Do you adjust these out to 162?

If so, well, you've just given credit for something that didn't happen.

If not, well, then you actually have no clue whatsoever who the best baseball players were, just a very abitrary/constrained definition of value that you happen to count.--i.e. the value that you measure is more a product of context than of what the players in question could actually do.
   152. Howie Menckel Posted: November 25, 2006 at 01:45 PM (#2245473)
"Well, I think it's unfair to give players credit for imaginary accomplishments. And it's not that I don't want to deal with speculation, I think it's just plain wrong to do so to any great extent. It offends my sense of fairness."

I suppose one could construct an argument against any war credit, although it sets up a systemic prejudice against an era of players - thus deliberately failing to meet the stated goal of the Hall of Merit to reflect, more accurately than the Hall of Fame does, greatness across all eras of baseball.
One can be THAT wedded to specific numbers, I guess, and slightly stick it as well to others who played in other war eras/strike eras, etc.

But to say that giving any credit to players who fought in WW II "offends my sense of fairnesss?"
That might be the very LAST word I would use to describe that choice.

Keep in mind that I'm not nearly as big a WW II credit guy as some - Keller never even slipped onto the bottom of my ballot until this year, for instance.
But that debate is a matter of degree.
Giving zero credit is a quantum leap that I hope would be reconsidered.

Real life has a way of mucking up all the charts and spreadsheets in the world. If your system can't account for it at all, your system may need a tuneup.
   153. Brent Posted: November 25, 2006 at 02:28 PM (#2245491)
1990 Ballot:

Only three candidates who are definite HoMers; the rest are all borderline.

1. Joe Morgan – I have him a little behind Collins and Hornsby, but I still rank him as one of the top 25 players of all time and the best overall player from the 1970s. (PHoM 1990)

2. Ferguson Jenkins – Over 13 seasons (1967-74, 76-78, 80, 82) he averaged 18-13, 2.3 wins above team, 269 IP, 124 DERA+, 196 SO, 55 BB. CYA for 1971, runner up for 1974. (PHoM 1990)

3. Jim Palmer – Over 10 seasons (1969-73, 75-78, 82) he averaged 20-9, 3.2 wins above team, 282 IP, 128 DERA+, 163 SO, 88 BB. CYA for 1973, 75, 76; runner up for 1977, 82. (PHoM 1990)

4. Phil Rizzuto – Great defense; hit well for a shortstop; ages 25-27 in military service. (PHoM 1967)

5. Ken Singleton –
6. Hugh Duffy – (PHoM 1931)
7. Bobby Bonds – (PHoM 1987)
8. Jimmy Wynn – (PHoM 1985)
9. Alejandro Oms – (PHoM 1967)
A cluster of outfielders who didn’t have super-high peaks or super-long careers, but each of them put up many seasons at the all-star level.

10. Dobie Moore – Among the short career, high peak candidates, I think his is the best case. (PHoM 1986)

11. Nellie Fox – Contributed with both the glove and the bat over a fairly long career. 3 Gold Gloves even though the award wasn’t offered until he was age 29. (PHoM 1979)

12. Bucky Walters – Over 7 seasons (1936, 39-42, 44-45) he averaged 18-13, 2.0 wins above team, 270 IP, 123 DERA+, 72 OPS+. MVP for 1939. (PHoM 1958)

13. Sal Bando – See my comparison of Bando and Childs. Edges Boyer. (PHoM 1987)

14. Gavy Cravath – Among the pure hitters in the backlog, he has the strongest credentials. (PHoM 1976)

15. Dizzy Dean – Over 6 seasons (1932-37) he averaged 22-13, 3.6 wins above team, 288 IP, 129 DERA+, 182 SO, 67 BB. MVP for 1934, runner up in 1935 and ‘36. (PHoM 1958)

Near misses:

16–20. Boyer (PHoM 1975), Welch (PHoM 1966), Redding (PHoM 1976), E Howard (PHoM 1977), Grimes (PHoM 1940)
21–25. Bresnahan, Newcombe, Keller, F Howard, Cepeda
26–30. R Smith, Leach (PHoM 1932), Brock, Van Haltren, Arlett

Other consensus top 10:

Ken Boyer - # 16. I have Bando slightly ahead.

Edd Roush –
A good player, but his contemporary Alejandro Oms was better. See this comparison.

Pete Browning –
I think his selection would be a mistake – poor fielder, weak leagues, short career, and trouble staying in the lineup.

Other new arrivals:

Amos Otis # 55 (about the same as Dom DiMaggio)
   154. Brent Posted: November 25, 2006 at 02:34 PM (#2245497)
I'll try again on the link to the comparison of Roush and Oms.
   155. sunnyday2 Posted: November 25, 2006 at 04:42 PM (#2245584)
Roush 135 522 560 .338 .383 .475 .857
Rel-to-lg 122 115 126 141
Oms 150 570 629 .353 .414 .507 .920
Rel-to-lg 120 116 123 138

One can argue Oms' translations--I mean, BA, OB, SL, OPS--but we've been there done that. I just want to highlight the assumption that Oms coulda woulda played 150 games versus Roush's 135. I would be pretty sure that Roush played more actual baseball games against high level competition in his career than Oms did. None of this diminishes the quality of player Oms was though reasonable people can disagree as to whether he was better than Roush on a day to day, inning to inning basis. But if you threw up the WS totals for both, you'd find Roush clobbers Oms on a seasonable basis. Why is that? I'm not sure, but it just shows that the numbers above are not the whole story.
   156. Daryn Posted: November 25, 2006 at 05:20 PM (#2245607)
My biggest regret on this project is that we didn't require all voters to give war credit like we did with Negro League credit.

I, for one, would not have participated in this project if we had to give war cresit, so I am glad you didn't. As you may recall, when I started this project I said I would not being giving war credit for the same reasons rfdc and Monty have set out (no moral qualms about it, just anti-speculation). You (Joe D) and I had a heated debate over the issue over a few threads in the teens. I came to understand your position better and while I don't agree with it entirely, it caused me to modify my stance on war credit and consider absence due to war subjectively on a case by case basis rather than numerically. I think I have been fair to the war generation(s).

I think the most convincing argument for me (and it might sway rfdc) is that I do take into account that the pre-1900 seasons were shorter and therefore give credit for play not played. Same with 154 v. 162 -- it hardly makes a difference, but I and most of us take into account the differing season lengths. That is not philosophically any different than adding length to a career that started in 1935 and ended in 1950 but was interrupted by the war. I'm a career voter, so that works for me. I still have real problems with voters who impute a theoretical peak to 1943-1945 (or even include those years not played in a peak). That just does not pass my own personal smell test.
   157. Daryn Posted: November 25, 2006 at 05:22 PM (#2245609)
Sorry, rdfc, not rfdc and credit not cresit.
   158. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 25, 2006 at 05:30 PM (#2245614)
Just a quick take on war credit. Why is it useful to give war credit? For bulk. I don't think any voter out there gives peak-level credit for war years. What I think most of us do is offer bulk based on our own personal levels of comfort with the probabilities of injury and stuff like that. We do this so that when we must compare Enos Slaughter (for instance) to Dave Parker we get a truer sense of both guys. Without the bulk credit, Slaughter and Parker are the same guy. With the bulk, Slaughter rises above Parker by a goodly amount.

Now the question of war credit for pitchers is rather different, and I, for one, do not extend war credit to pitcheres due to the traumatic nature of pitching, but I do give it for hitters.

Specifically talking about the ww2 generation, how likely is it that a player would be injured? I did a little study on serious injuries a few elections ago. In the 10-15 years before ww2, there were 364 instances in which a player had 300 PAs in one year and either had a year away from the majors or his career ended there. In examining those players, I estimated that 15% of those absences were due to injury. 78% were due to simple ineffectiveness. Put another way, only 4% of seasons of 300+ PA in the pre-war period were followed by an absence of 1 year or by the end of a player's career. That covers 390 players and 1138 player-seasons. Which leads me to believe that the question of catastrophic injury is overblown and that voters can assess a percentage discount of something like 5% off of whatever their first-blush credit scenario would suggest.

In essence, the question becomes Who's the boss? If you believe that baseball management is the only group who controls the destiny of big-league players, it's just not true. Uncle Sam trumps the Lords of the Realm, and the players who went to war had zero control over their careers during those years. They either played until they were called to serve, or they enlisted to take a comission to avoid being a grunt just before they would have been drafted. Frankly, it's all the same: life intrudes on baseball and making no accounting of it leads to more problems than ignoring it.
   159. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: November 25, 2006 at 08:22 PM (#2245683)
This will be a quick ballot as I am away from the computer with all of my stuff on it. I am usually in favor of more comprehensive remarks for each candidate and I will be back to my longer explanations in two weeks.

1990 ballot

1. Joe Morgan - One of the holy trio of 2B with COllins and hornsby
2. Charlie Keller - Overlooked for many reason but iwth proper credit is an easy HOMer
3. Fergie Jenkins - Much like Drysdale and Marichal
4. Jim Palmer - Overrated because he played in about as favorable an environment that one can. However, he is still an easy HOMer.
5. Hugh Duffy - Best of the 1890's CF trio b/c of his peak
6. Dick Redding - 2nd best NeL pitcher of the dead ball era.
7. Dobie Moore - The first half of Ernie Banks career, value-wise.
8. Jimmy Wynn - Similar to Doby and Averill
9. Bucky Walters - Great peak, enough career, good hitter.
10. Quincey Trouppe - Better than HOmer Mackey IMO, nice peak.
11. Elston Howard - Very similar to Trouppe, not quite as much playing time.
12. Ken Boyer - Great defensive 3B
13. Pete browning - Great hitter, great, great hitter.
14. Gavy Cravath - With MiL credit, simliar to Browning.
15. Dizzy Dean - Koufax Lite.


Singleton is in the 30's I see him as very similar, but inferior, to Frank Howard. None of the other guys make my top 60.


Nellie Fox - In my top 25
Charley Jones - About #34, many small demerits and I only give one year of blacklisting credit.
Edd Roush - Near Jones, lower # of games played per season brings him down.
   160. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 25, 2006 at 09:28 PM (#2245714)
Question: does it make sense to overrate generations of players who were lucky enough not have to worry about being conscripted? When we don't factor in any credit for the WWII boys, that's what we are doing.
   161. dan b Posted: November 25, 2006 at 11:56 PM (#2245764)
PHoM 1990 – Morgan, Palmer, Jenkins

1. Morgan One of the best.
2. Keller PHoM 1967. 1989 re-evaluation moves him ahead of Duffy in my backlog. Now giving him 20 WS for 1938, 32 WS for 1944 and 1945. James puts just ahead of Kiner, and he may be right. I think we are shortchanging the WWII generation.
3. Palmer
4. Dean PHoM 1976. 1975 reevaluation of great pitching peaks put Diz on my ballot for the first time.
5. Jenkins PHoM 1990. Bob Prince used to refer to him as Ferguson Jenkins and his Orchestra.
6. Duffy PHoM 1912. I’ve been looking at how players on the ballot compare with the median level of already enshrined HoMers whose credentials are post 1893 MLB using WS. Duffy would be in the top half using 5 consecutive seasons, 10 consecutive seasons and 8 best seasons.
7. Roush PHoM 1942. Better than Ashburn
8. Walters PHoM 1968. Nice peak.
9. Bresnahan PHoM 1928. SABR Dead ball era committee has him #1. No major league catchers between Ewing and Hartnett is not being fair to all eras.
10. Wynn, J PHoM 1986. NHBA #10 CF.
11. Boyer, K PHoM 1987. More deserving than Sewell, NHBA #12.
12. Fox, N PHoM 1987.If Maz could hit like Nellie, the 1960 WS hero would have been elected by now.
13. Bando Close to Boyer, James has him ahead and may be right. Expect he will be a PhoMer.
14. Singleton Can’t see WS users having him way off ballot while voting for Bonds.
15. Howard, F I’ll take Hondo’s peak over Bobby Bonds, but ….
16. Bonds, Bo … Barry’s dad was pretty good.
17. Cravath PHoM 1967. mle credit where credit is due.
18. Leach PHoM 1926.
19. Howard, E
20. Munson
21. Cooper, W PHoM 1942.
22. Burns, G. Came close to making PHoM during the 1929-1932 trough. Probably should have. His 10-consective year peak is above the HoM median.
23. Cepeda
24. Tiant
25. Berger
26. Browning PHoM 1912.
27. Cash, N
28. Rizzuto Could move up.
29. Willis, V PHoM 1941.
30. Mays, C
31. Doyle PHoM 1930.
32. Chance, F PHoM 1921.
33. Jones, C – I have voted for him (4) times – 1898 thru 1901. When I dropped him in ’02, he received only 2 votes. Ed Williamson was on 18 ballots; Arlie Latham drew more support with 3 votes. My 1898 ballot comment – “9. Jones. Two-year hold out probably costs him a couple places”. Nobody was giving credit for not playing back then, as we hadn’t tackled issues like war and mil credit yet. If as many voters had treated his hold out years like he was an all-star back then as are doing so now, he may have been elected by 1920. His 1988 top-10 finish pushed me to re-evaluate for 1989 and give him holdout credit. A reconstructed PHoM based on if I thought then like I think now, would have put him in my PHoM during the trough years of 1929-32 if not 1921.
34. Grimes
35. Ryan
36. Van Haltren Do 3 years of slightly below average pitching really merit Van Haltren this much more support than Jimmy Ryan?
37. Redding Fared well in the Cool Papa’s survey, as did Spots Poles and Dobie Moore.
38. Elliott
39. Brock not enough peak to be higher
40. Pinson
41. Smith, Reg less peak and less career than Brock
42. Moore - I like high peak, short career pitchers, but need more career from hitters. If Moore, why not Rosen?
43. Rosen If a great 5 consecutive season peak were the only measure we considered, Rosen would have been elected in 1964.
44. Arlett
45. Traynor
46. Cicotte Better character and a couple more good years made possible by better character would have made him a HoFer if not a HoMer.
47. Gomez More peak than Tiant.
48. Mazeroski As John Lennon once said, and “The Hidden Game of Baseball” and the HOF veterans committee apparently agreed “…Glove is all you need, glove is all you need.”
49. Newcombe If one of Newk’s supporters will tell me how much NeL credit to give him, he could move up. I am giving him (2) 20 WS seasons of military service credit to get him this high.
50. McGraw Best 3B of the 90’s
   162. Paul Wendt Posted: November 26, 2006 at 12:29 AM (#2245770)
Mike Emeigh:
There aren't as many discretionary plays around 2B as you might think.

Most popups really aren't discretionary.

I am inclined to agree, although I haven't read enough to know how many "you might think". Also, I think there are few discretionary plays in practice at SS/3B and at 2B/1B. Did Mike Schmidt and Mark Grace, revered veterans with good glove reputations, take many flies that the relatively low-status, mlb-inexperienced SS or 2B would take on another team? Not many, I believe. Maybe Bob "Death tft" Ferguson did it at 3B in 1870.

Pitcher, I don't know. Are there some pitchers in recent decades who call for a lot of pops themselves?

sunnyday2 Posted: November 25, 2006 at 12:37 AM (#2245397)
Wow. Minor league credit but no war credit. I think you're the only voter who does that!

Monty Posted: November 25, 2006 at 01:06 AM (#2245402)
"Minor league credit but no war credit. I think you're the only voter who does that!"

If I were a voter, that's what I would be doing as well.

David Jones isn't voting any more. (still finishing up Deadball Stars of the A.L.; good luck with it.)

And I'm not voting. I would happily give Cravath full MLE credit for AA 1910-1912 and Averill full MLE credit for 1926-1928 whereas I would not give Slaughter anything like OPS+ 150-144-138 in 686 pa for 1943-1945 (straight line interpolation). His best consecutive seasons were 1941-1942 and his second best "consecutive" seasons were 1942-1946, and I believe that he did garner peak credit, in effect, rather than mere bulk credit per Eric Chalek #160.
But I agree with Joe Dimino #148 literally. "I think it's a cop out to say we don't know so it's a zero. If a guy was a 25 WS a year player before and after the war, a zero is a much bigger mistake than giving him three 25s" (emphasis mine). So I'm not with David Jones, rdfc, and Monty in spirit, just more inclined to give "full" credit --as I think it has come to be defined here-- for some minor league play than for any wartime major league career interruptions.

By the way, from my perspective it's possible that Faber, Rixey, and Slaughter would all be in the HOM if no voters were giving war credit, but it's also possible that they wouldn't be in.
   163. Brent Posted: November 26, 2006 at 12:50 AM (#2245777)
sunnyday2 wrote: One can argue Oms' translations--I mean, BA, OB, SL, OPS--but we've been there done that. I just want to highlight the assumption that Oms coulda woulda played 150 games versus Roush's 135. I would be pretty sure that Roush played more actual baseball games against high level competition in his career than Oms did.

We've been over this many times. The Negro Leaguers played as many or more games than the major leaguers, but many of their games were not against league competition and therefore were not counted in the statistics. Playing year-round, they played many more professional baseball games over their careers than the white players did.

We can't be certain how many games Oms missed due to injury or other reasons. (I've taken a look at his Cuban League record and will post what I found on the Oms thread.) We are certain, however, that Roush missed many games during his prime.

But if you threw up the WS totals for both, you'd find Roush clobbers Oms on a seasonable basis. Why is that? I'm not sure, but it just shows that the numbers above are not the whole story.

Over the 9-year period that I was using for my comparison (1921-29 for Oms, 1917-21 and 22-26 for Roush), and after adjusting Roush's 1918 and '19 seasons to 154-game schedules, Oms is ahead in WS, 245 to 235.

Roush's top two seasons in WS (36 and 33) do show up ahead of any MLE season for Oms, but I treat that difference with some skepticism. (a) It appears that Roush's peak for those two seasons was partly due to a blip in his fielding statistics (he was second in his league in OF fielding both years according to WS). Since we don't have season-by-season fielding statistics for Oms, presumably a smoother pattern was used for his MLEs. (b) Although Oms's batting MLEs exhibit year-to-year variation, they also show the effects of the regression technique that Chris used in their construction, flattening out the yearly variation. The MLEs were designed for use in comparing players over intervals of 5+ years, so I think it is fairest to stick to comparisons over such time periods.
   164. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 26, 2006 at 02:43 AM (#2245822)
Pitcher, I don't know. Are there some pitchers in recent decades who call for a lot of pops themselves?

Mike E, you might remember this, but about 10-15 years back when Bob Walk was on the Pirates, he called for a popup and caught it (I think). A kind of big deal was made about it in the local press because so few popups are called for by pitchers. I was like 15, so this might be a hazy memory, but I think Walk himself even made some wry comments about it being his first popup so he'd better not screw it up.
   165. Juan V Posted: November 26, 2006 at 04:05 PM (#2245970)
Well, the end of the trimester has really caught up with me, so I´m posting a late ballot. I wanted to take another look at the backlog, but that will have to wait until ´91 or ´92.

1990 Ballot.

1) JOE MORGAN: He shouldn´t have written that book.

2) JIM PALMER: Nice run prevention. Sure, a lot of that was his defense, but he seems to have learned to trust it.

3) QUINCY TROUPPE: Yes, I still like him. I think it would be a shame if he´s still waiting by the time bi-weekly elections end.

4) FERGIE JENKINS: HOMer, but I´m not the biggest fan of his prime. He´s probably closer to the borderline than to the inner-circle. 2 to 4 in this ballot are REALLY close.

5) ALE OMS: Even though he wasn´t affected by my outfield reevaluation, he doesn´t stand out as much because of others moving up. Still good though.

6) GAVVY CRAVATH: Yeah, there might be an OF glut in the HOM, but I can´t help but be impressed by him.

7) JIMMY RYAN: Still can´t see why he´s so far behind GVH and Duffy.

8) KEN BOYER: Brooks Robinson with less glove and more peak. Moves down because of Ryan moving up.

9) JIMMY WYNN: Separated from Ryan. 7 to 9 is another really tight spot here.

10) CHARLEY JONES: One of the trickiest players to evaluate, but if you give him blacklist credit, he´s a good one.

11) TONY LAZZERI: Comparable to (if not as good as) recent HOMer Childs. Although, if you´d like positional balance in the HOM, I don´t think you need him (or another older second baseman, for that matter), given the strenght coming up in the position.

12) BOB JOHNSON: Weird, in that he doesn´t have the great career or great peak, but the combination is very good. Best in a bunch of borderline outfielders, in my system.

13) LUIS TIANT: Pierce-supporters should like him, as he´s similar (but with a lesser peak). However, I wouldn´t be surprised if the HOM in/out line ended up being drawn across the small space that separates them.

14) GENE TENACE: I couldn´t take the more detailed look at him that I wanted to do, because of the time restrictions said above. However, he spent a larger percentage of his career catching than, say, Joe Torre. Sure, he wasn´t as good as Torre, but for now, that´s enough to keep him where he is, for now.

15) JIM FREGOSI: He´s back! A shortstop who could hit (at least during his Angel prime), during a long era when they were few and far between.

Off-ballot. Within each group, players are listed alphabetically.

16-24: Jake Beckley, Roger Bresnahan, Pete Browning, Charlie Keller, Chuck Klein, Dobie Moore, Cannonball Dick Redding, Edd Roush, Ken Singleton
25-36: Dave Bancroft, Bobby Bonds, Larry Doyle, Hugh Duffy, Bob Eliott, Lefty Gomez, Ernie Lombardi, Johnny Pesky, George Scales, Reggie Smith, Pie Traynor, George Van Haltren
37-46: Sal Bando, Orlando Cepeda, Dizzy Dean, Nellie Fox, Frank Howard, Jim Kaat, Thurman Munson, Marvin Williams, Ned Williamson, Artie Wilson
47-55: Dick Bartell, Lou Brock, Norm Cash, Bus Clarkson, Burleigh Grimes, John McGraw, Bobby Murcer, Bucky Walters, Wilbur Wood


Dobie Moore: Just short. Clear another couple of spots, and he´ll be back on my ballot.

Nellie Fox: How is he that much better than all the little hitting, glovemen MIFs (not Aparicio but, say, Bancroft)?

Pete Browning: Creeping close to my ballot, but I´m not convinced that his full package was better than, say, Charlie Keller´s.


Ken Singleton: He made the set of borderline outfielders, which was a bit of a surprise to me. Probably better than Klein, maybe closer to Keller or Browning.

Amos Otis: Too much of a bat deficit to make up for. Off my consideration set.
   166. favre Posted: November 26, 2006 at 05:19 PM (#2246029)
I consider myself a prime voter, using a combination of OPS+/PA, ERA+/IP, and WS on a season-by-season basis. I also give weight to underrepresented eras and positions.

1. Joe Morgan
2. Jim Palmer
3. Charley Jones

No doubt Palmer pitched in front of some great defenses. But there’s also no doubt that he was a workhorse; he led the league in innings four times and finished second, five innings behind the leader, a fifth time. His 1975-78 run was just outstanding.

Jones averaged an OPS+ of 164 between 1876-1880, his age 26-30 years. I have no problem giving him credit for his blacklisted seasons. He was a star before and after those years, and I’m not inclined to penalize someone banned from working by his employers because he tried to collect back pay.

There is a group of sluggers in the backlog who have roughly the same resume: about 300 career WS (with credits and adjustments), a career OPS+ 150 or therebouts, with a high somewhere in the 170s, eight or nine prime years (with various war/minor league credits), not a lot of defensive value. This group includes Gavvy Cravath, Charlie Keller, Frank Howard, Pete Browning (with AA adjustments), Mike Tiernan; Sam Thompson, already in the HoM, also fits in this group. All these guys have an argument for induction, but I think Jones is a cut above. He also had a high peak, but a longer prime (with blacklisted credit) and better defense than anyone except maybe Keller. Although I don’t give credit for any seasons before 1876, I do suspect that his late arrival in organized baseball was due to geographical factors.

4. Jake Beckley
5. Dobie Moore
6. Jimmy Wynn

Sisler’s election means we have narrowed down the 1B gap from thirty to twenty years, 1897 until 1915. Beckley is similar to Minoso: very good defense, not a particularly high peak, but a long prime. In fact, if you add in Dr. C’s MLE’s, Minoso’s career stats start looking a lot like Beckley’s 125 OPS+ in 10, 470 plate appearances. Minoso’s peak wasn’t much higher (best season 155 OPS+, Beckley’s 152), although it was certainly longer.

Moore is very comparable to Banks without the mediocre years at 1B. I will take Moore’s 1921-5 seasons over Joe Sewell’s best five; if you give Moore credit for his Wrecker days, then I don’t see why we put Sewell ahead. Wynn did not have a huge peak, but his prime is excellent, posting six seasons with an OPS+ between 140-167, five of those as a CF. He doesn’t have much outside his prime, but I’m a prime voter, so I don’t care.

7. Vic Willis
8. Ferguson Jenkins

I have more distance between Jenkins and Palmer than most voters, although six ballot spots isn’t exactly a gaping chasm. I love Jenkins’ long prime, but less impressed by his peak; Willis had bigger years. We only have five pitchers in from 1896-1900. Willis pitched from 1898-00, so he’d give us another hurler in that era. More importantly, he had 4000 IP with an ERA+ of 118 (and seasons of 167, 155, and 154), so we’ve elected most of the guys like him.

9. Nellie Fox
10. Bob Elliott
11. Ken Boyer

So far we only have five infielders from the 1950s, with no one new on tap. (Jackie, Pee Wee, Mathews, and Banks; Musial at 1B from 1955; also technically Killebrew and Robinson, but Killer wasn’t established as a full-time player until ’59, and Brooksie until 1960). That is simply too few for the decade. We also have no 2B after 1952, when Jackie moved to LF. Rose arrives on the scene (as I was reminded) in 1963, so that would be about an eleven year gap. Fox’s career—over 2600 hits and 300 WS—gets him on the ballot.

Boyer and Elliott make it back onto my ballot after the early 80s third basemen glut. It’s very hard for me to separate the two in my head; Bob was a little better hitter, Ken a little better at defense, but WS has them with almost identical career values. Elliott was clearly the best 3B of his time, while Boyer was not, so he gets a slight edge. Boyer would also give us another 1950s infielder. Sal Bando is awfully close to these guys as well, and may soon join them.

12. Bucky Walters
13. Roger Bresnahan
14. Gavvy Cravath
15. Tommy Leach

While I recognize that Walters’ 1939-’42 peak was helped by outstanding defenses behind him, he also pitched well during and immediately after the war, when his outstanding defenses were either in the service or growing old. Cravath averaged a 161 OPS+ from ages 32-36, and the data from the minor leagues suggests that was not a fluke. Similar to Kiner, although Kiner has the higher peak..

There’s been some good discussion about the appropriateness of balancing eras and positions. Obviously I think it’s a good idea. While I would not vote for somebody whom I felt did not deserve it just to fill a “slot,” it does make me look more closely at players, and I do use it as a tiebreaker. And there are some gaps that just seem too large—for example, the twenty year gap at catcher from 1891-1911. Bresnahan was in the top six in OPB seven times from 1903-1914; he did equally well in another five seasons, but didn’t have the PA’s to qualify for the title. That’s an impressive run for a catcher. He also would help fill a small gap we have in CF in the early oughts, 1901-5.

Tommy Leach, an old favourite of mine, makes it back onto the ballot after a fifteen-year-or-so absence. So far we’ve elected seven third basemen who played before 1950, which seems too few for eighty years of organized baseball.

16-20: Dick Redding, Frank Howard, Wally Schang, Larry Doyle, Luis Tiant

Not in my top fifteen:

Pete Browning See Jones comment. I’m more sceptical of the AA than other voters, although there’s no doubt that Browning could mash.

Edd Roush Had some playing time issues. I give candidates from underrepresented positions/eras more weight; Roush was a contemporary of Cobb, Speaker, Charleston, and Torriente. That doesn’t remove him from consideration, but it doesn’t exactly lend a sense of urgency for his candidacy, either.
   167. Willie Mays Hayes Posted: November 26, 2006 at 10:09 PM (#2246161)
1990 Ballot

1. Joe Morgan - An all-time great. Top 3 ever at his position. His value was held a lot in the stats he claims not to believe in as a broadcaster.
2. Fergie Jenkins - A no-brainer #1 most years.
3. Dobie Moore - What can I say, I'm sold. Ernie Banks without the 1b years? Good enough for me.
4. Pete Browning - Big beneficiary this time around. I'm convinced he was the 1880's Dick Allen.
5. Jim Palmer - Helped tremendously by park and defense - still a very good pitcher.
6. Ken Boyer - Brooks Robinson-lite, but with a peak.
7. Charlie Keller - Poor man's Kiner. Close with war credit, but Kiner's huge peak was real.
8. Thurman Munson - I'm warming up to the idea that he was very similar to Freehan.
9. Hugh Duffy - Moves down, as he doesn't have much other than that 1894 - I like Browning better after looking closer.
10. Bucky Walters - How did I miss him for so long? An egregious oversight on my part.
11. Alejandro Oms - I was missing a lot on him for a while. Nice player.
12. Frank Howard - Now comes the fun part. As a peak guy (even though I count career as well, I lean peak), I couldn't rationalize him so low, especially behind Beckley.
13. Norm Cash - Raw numbers better than Howard, but Cash was platooned.
14. Chuck Klein - Similar to Howard, but how much of it was the Baker Bowl?
15. Jake Beckley - Makes it back onto the ballot. No peak, but career too good to overlook entirely. The charter member of the HOVG.
16-20 Taylor, Tiant, GVH, Roy White, Redding

Roush - Played in a weak league and is discounted accordingly.
Fox - Where's the offense outside of hits?

Singleton - In the early 30's. I like him, but there's about 30 players better right now.
Otis - Somewhere between 40 and 60.
   168. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: November 27, 2006 at 05:51 AM (#2246330)
Explain my system, eh? I don't have anything that adds up all the numbers and produces a rating. I rank the candidates by position (counting "Corner OF" as one) and look at both Win Shares and WARP (usually WARP 1, but sometimes WARP 3 if they're close in time), keeping in mind the flaws that people here point out. I try to balance career and peak, but I'm not averse to including an extreme candidate in either direction if I feel they're worthy (thus, Moore and Beckley). I do give war credit, and sometimes minor league credit, but only if I'm really sure it's deserved. I also try to balance eras, but I don't make hard-and-fast rules about it.

One oddity is that I have more Negro Leaguers on my ballot than anybody else, but I also have one of the highest consensus scores. I can't really explain that.

Morgan, Palmer and Jenkins make my PHoM this year. I see I'm not alone.

1. Joe Morgan (new) I was interested to see that WARP has 1976 as a step behind the 4 prior years, they saw a slacking in his defense. Other than that, I got nothing. Makes my PHoM this year.

2. Jim Palmer (new) I see him as having a pretty similar career value to Jenkins, but being a bit more dominant at his best. Makes my PHoM this year.

3. Ferguson Jenkins (4) Took the title of Best Canadian Pitcher from either John Hiller or Phil Marchildon (depending on WWII credit – do you get extra from being in a POW camp for 2 years?), just like Alanis took Biggest Canadian 90s Pop Star from Robin Sparkles. (Go to and look under How I Met Your Mother if you want to get that joke. And you do.) Makes my PHoM this year.

4. Jimmy Wynn (5) I do sort of worry that I'm just voting for the uber-stats, but the more I've looked at him, the more I like him. Out of all the “pure” CF candidates currently out there, his OPS+ beats everyone but Wally Berger, who has other issues. Made my PHoM in 1985.

5. Bill Monroe (7) A good player at an important defensive position, with a great reputation for his fielding. People like to promote the 1890s as underrepresented, but that doesn't mean the 00s and 10s are overrepresented. Anybody who wants to vote for Marvin Williams should look at Monroe as well. Made my PHoM in 1939.

6. Quincy Trouppe (8) I don’t quite credit him with all the At-Bats that the MLEs do, but a 22-year career of mostly catching goes a long way, and all the evidence says that he was very good. A better hitter than Mackey, and had a more substantial career. Catcher defense is important, but not enough to make up for everything else. Made my PHoM in 1961.

7. George Van Haltren (9) A very good player for a long time, even if he was never truly great. I can't see how people can have Beckley ahead of him when you compare them season-by-season. Made my PHoM in 1972.

8. Dobie Moore (10) The new MLEs don’t hurt him all that much IMO. We honestly don’t know exactly how good he was with the Wreckers. If he started out batting eighth, I don’t think he was putting up great numbers from the get-go. For a long time I had him just behind Jennings, but now I've decided he was clearly better than Jennings - perhaps not as high a peak, but his excellence endured longer. If you could have either one as a 22-year-old, why wouldn't you take Moore? Made my PHoM in 1968.

9. Tommy Leach (12) Dropped because I had to admit that Robinson was a better 3B candidate, and I wasn’t all that crazy about his argument either. I may have been overrating 3Bmen in general. Excellent fielder at important positions, OK hitter. One of the most complete players on the ballot. Made my PHoM in 1940.

10. Dick Redding (6) After reading Chris's interpretation of the HoF numbers, it does appear I need to pull him back a bit. Seems to have a pretty good peak, and also has somewhat of a career argument. I still tend to think he’s close enough to Mendez that they both should be in or out. Made my PHoM in 1973.

11. Gavvy Cravath (11) With the basic 07, 09-11 additions, this is where I have him. A better peak than Johnson, but less consistent. WARP isn't too fond of him (I really need to redo my attempted WS-to-WARP translation with the latest system). Made my PHoM in 1987.

12. Jake Beckley. (13) I still think his typical season was pretty weak for a HoM candidate, but he has a ton of career value, and was more consistent than Cash and especially Cepeda. Made my PHoM in 1987.

13. Ken Boyer (14) Moves up because he missed time in the minors due to military service. It doesn't help his peak, but gives him enough of a career boost to move pass Clarkson. I see his numbers as comparable to Elliott, with a higher peak. When you add in a wartime penalty for Elliott, it’s not a question. Made my PHoM in 1987.

14. Bob Johnson (15) I'm impressed by his consistency, he was an above-average player every year for 13 seasons. Now that Medwick’s in my PHoM, Johnson will make it eventually.
(14A Biz Mackey, 14B Clark Griffith)

15. Bus Clarkson (16) Parallels Elliot’s career, but with war credit he comes out ahead, and he presumably had more defensive value. Still a high ranking for a relatively unknown player IMO.

16. Reggie Smith (18) Very similar to Medwick/Johnson, but the lack of a peak holds him back. Win Shares really likes him.
17. Norm Cash (17) A lot of good years, but I really think he's the Beckley of the 60s, with a shorter career (although that's not really much of a criticism).
18. Edd Roush (19) Jumps up after realizing there are strong similarities to Wynn, but there are still important differences.
19. Luis Tiant (20) After the deluge of 1970s-era pitchers, he’ll have to be reevaluated, but he could move up.
20. Phil Rizzuto (21) He does come out as comparable to Sewell in total value, but it’s very defense-heavy, and even if it’s unfair, I’m less certain about that.
21. Charlie Keller (22) I see him as distinctly better than Kiner. If Keller had been the biggest star on the Pirates and Kiner was the second banana on the Yankees, King Kong would probably be in the HoF. (Especially because DiMaggio wouldn’t have put up with Ralph’s pursuit of fame.)
22. Alejandro Oms (26) A reasonable candidate, but doesn’t stand out for me in any particular manner.
(22A Cool Papa Bell, 22B Max Carey)
23. Sal Bando (23) A good hitter for a 3Bman, but doesn’t have the peak or all-around value of Boyer.
24. Nellie Fox (24) Not quite up to the standard of Doerr/Gordon/Childs, and the HoM is not notably short on 2Bmen.
25. Bobby Bonds (25) On further review, I was a bit too bullish on him, but he is quite good.
(25A Ralph Kiner)
26. Vern Stephens (27) Close to Rizzuto, but with the wartime discount and the sudden dropoff after 1950, not quite there.
(26A Rube Foster, 26B Sam Thompson, 26C Richie Ashburn)
27. Ken Singleton (new) Another stinkin' 70s OF candidate. Close in value to Bonds, although a very different type of player.
28. Ben Taylor (28) A good player, especially with the pitching, but not quite there. If we included off-field accomplishments, could very well be a different story.
29. Bucky Walters (30) Another pitcher who might be worth some re-evaluation, but for now I can’t put him any higher due to wartime.
30. Orlando Cepeda (29) More up-and-down than Cash, I generally lean more towads consistency.

31. Elston Howard
(31A Hughie Jennings, 31B George Sisler)
32. Bob Elliott
33. Lou Brock
34. Charley Jones (34) I do give him blacklist credit, but even so, he wasn’t quite dominant enough in his era for me.
35. Tony Lazzeri
36. Don Newcombe
37. Dave Bancroft
38. Marvin Williams
39. Pie Traynor
40. Frank Howard

44. Pete Browning. Not a long career, the AA discount, the terrible fielding. I know he could hammer the ball, but there are other guys who I think have more of an all-around argument. (Better him than Duffy, though.)
   169. OCF Posted: November 27, 2006 at 06:55 AM (#2246347)
And Devin's consensus score will be well above average this year as well, albeit not quite as high as mulder & scully or Howie Menckel. The things that keep his score high:
1. He has Morgan #1. (So does nearly everyone; but slip there and you lose a lot.)
2. He has Palmer and Jenkins as 2-3. That's the single biggest thing anyone can do this year to boost his score. (It makes very little difference whether they're 2-3 or 3-2.)
3. 13 of his 15 votes go to players who are among the top 20 or so candidates. He's left off some popular backloggers, but so has everyone else.

Against that, the fact that he's invested two non-elect-me votes in two lightly suppoerted candidates - Bill Monroe and Bus Clarkson - lowers his score by a little, but only by a little. That's his "more Negro Leaguers than most" claim; that and Trouppe and Redding, but Trouppe and Redding are in the top 20 - well-supported backloggers.
   170. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 27, 2006 at 01:05 PM (#2246381)
45 ballots tallied so far. Still missing ballots from: Mike Webber, James Newburg, Don F, DanG, Trevor P., Andrew M, Ken Fischer, Esteban Rivera, Patrick W, Tiboreau, KJOK, Ardo, Vaux, fra paolo and Tom D.

The election ends at 8 PM EDT. Please, no last second posts if at all possible. Thanks!
   171. Ken Fischer Posted: November 27, 2006 at 04:04 PM (#2246500)
1990 Ballot

1-Joe Morgan 512 WS
No brainer….an all-timer

2-Ferguson Jenkins 323 WS
Edges out Palmer….this could be his year.

3-Jim Palmer 312 WS
The O’s great is sometimes overlooked in the 60s/70s era of Carlton & Ryan but was one of the best.

4-Dick Redding
He is ranked by many as one of the top pitchers of the pre-Negro League days.

5-George Van Haltren 344 WS
His numbers deserve the high ranking.

6-Mickey Welch 354 WS
I continue to hold out hope for the 300-game winner. How can we forget that 1885 season!

7-Carl Mays 256 WS
256 win shares in an offense dominated era is impressive.

8-Vern Stephens 265 WS
His comps are Doerr & Lazzeri but I believe he was better. A forerunner of the modern power hitting shortstop.

9-Wally Schang 245 WS
Schang belongs in a special group of most overlooked ballplayers…Schang, Dahlen, B. Mathews, Start, Pike, Barnes, B. Johnson, etc. He played for several flag winners. Schang had great plate discipline. At the age of 39 he led the AL in HBP.

10-Bob Johnson 287 WS
A raw deal…Indian Bob will forever be hurt by playing for mostly bad teams and the overlapping eras he played in (Live Ball & War Years). A solid performer year after year…he’s deserves a good look.

11-Jake Beckley 318 WS
Like his career value. Connor, Crawford and O’Rourke and Clarke are all comps.

12- Ken Boyer 279 WS
Boyer was overshadowed by Santo and perhaps his own teammates.

13-Dobie Moore
We’re taking a lot on hearsay…but I’ve been swayed by the argument he had a great peak.

14-Edd Roush 314 WS
McGraw didn’t get along with him but liked the way he played.

15-Luis Tiant 256 WS

Fox, Browning & Wynn are in my top 25. They’re getting close. My loyalty and belief in Van Haltren, Welch, Johnson, Schang & Stephens keep them out of the top 15.

16-Lou Brock 348 WS
17-Tony Mullane 399 WS
18- Burleigh Grimes 286 WS
19-Nellie Fox 304 WS
20-Jim Wynn
21-Gil Hodges 263 WS
22-Pete Browning 225 WS
23-Dick Lundy
24-Curt Flood 221 WS
25-Jim Kaat 268 WS
   172. Patrick W Posted: November 27, 2006 at 06:01 PM (#2246585)
Ron Reed probably had the best career of any player to come out of my high school.

1. Joe Morgan (n/a), Cinc. – Hou. (N), 2B (’65-’84) (1990) – Hornsby owes more of his success to his phenomenal peak, but Morgan becomes the best of the inner circle group that rely on their peak credentials for enrollment in this elite class (Ott, Mantle & Hornsby, Lajoie). As if anyone with 17 productive years could be considered a ‘peak’ guy.
2. Fergie Jenkins (4), Chic. (N) SP (’66-’83) (1990) – Leaps and bounds ahead of anyone who appeared on the ’88 ballot. Will soon join the Jesse Burkett wing of the no-brainers.
3. Jim Palmer (n/a), Balt. (A) SP (’65-’83) (1990) – Not very hard to slot with all these pitchers near the top of the ballot.
4. Luis Tiant (5), Bost. – Clev. (A) SP (’64-’80) (1988) – Right there with Drysdale, Ford and Marichal. Not a slam dunk, but the ballot’s not strong enough to hold him down.
5. Jim Kaat (6), Minn. (A) SP (’61-’83) – Kaat would probably be in the Hall today if his ’62-’66-’74-’75 had instead occurred consecutively. His best seasons don’t seem to coincide with Minnesota’s best as a team in the ‘60s either. Value is value in my system, and this is where he deserves to rank.
6. Ken Boyer (7), St.L (N), 3B (’55-’68) (1975) – A lot more hitting value than the fielding-dominant infielders further down the ballot. And he was a good defender in his own right.
7. Jimmy Wynn (8), Hou. (N), CF (’63-’76) (1985) – Hitting the ballot the same year as Allen doesn’t make for a favorable comparison. Good hitter - but not as good as Richie – with a relatively short career. Close in overall value in CF as another Richie – Ashburn.
8. Dutch Leonard (9), Wash. (A) SP (’34-’53) (1972) – Amazing how valuable he was before and after the war, the lost time to injury in ’42 and the apparent effects of recovery in ’43-’44 keep him from the 15-18 votes that all his equals seem to be getting. Penalize one guy for playing too good during the war, penalize another for not playing good enough...
9. Dizzy Trout (10), Detr. (A) SP (’39-’52) (1967) – Bob Lemon was better than Dizzy Trout, but Lemon on the cusp while Trout isn’t even the best Dizzy according to the voters is too steep a drop IMO. It would take a war discount of close to 50% to drop him from my ballot, which is about 35-40% below what the quality drop-off actually was. Don’t penalize the players for being in their prime in ’42-’45.
10. Norm Cash (11), Detr. (A), 1B (’60-’74) (1985) – Ben Taylor appears to be the comp, but Cash ranks so close to Dizzy in the total value column that I have raised Taylor 5 spots instead of starting Norm at 14.
11. Alejandro Oms (12), Cuba (--), CF (‘21-‘37) (1965) – I’m not enough of a Cuban baseball expert to be Oms’ biggest fan. On top of the fact that I don’t like the slippery slope his election might lead to.
12. George Van Haltren (13), NY(N), CF / LF (’87-’03) (1926) – Would already be in but for the fluke scheduling quirk in ’31. Here’s hoping it won’t take much longer.
13. Ben Taylor (14), Ind. (--), 1B (’10-’26) (1938) – I am comfortable being Ben’s 2nd-3rd biggest fan.
14. Bob Johnson (15), Phila. (A), LF (’33-’45) (1985) – Late start to his career, but every season a quality one, and 0.304 EQA always looks good on the resume.
15. Ken Singleton (n/a), Balt. (A), RF (’70-’84) – Worth some discussion. Just ahead of Bonds in the pecking order, both a little bit above Beckley

Nellie Fox – Not the best glove man missing from the ballot.
Dobie Moore – Not enough career. Spot Poles and Bill Monroe – neither particularly close to the ballot anymore – are ranked higher on my ballot.
Edd Roush – I can’t even tell if career voters or peak voters should be voting for Roush. Near the bottom of the OF consideration set.
Pete Browning – Much closer to the ballot than anyone else listed above, but even he’s only approx. low 20s-high 30s.

Four players were in last year’s top ten, but not in my top 15 this year.
   173. Esteban Rivera Posted: November 27, 2006 at 06:57 PM (#2246619)
1990 Ballot:

1. Joe Morgan – Easy number one when you’re in the discussion for best ever at your position.

2. Jim Palmer - Palmer’s peak edges out Fergie’s on this ballot. Could dock Palmer because of his outstanding defense but don’t. How much of it was Palmer taking advantage of what he had and pitching accordingly vs. it just being the defense?

3. Ferguson Jenkins – One of the few candidates who has been held back and then finished in the lowest elect-me spot not because of his credentials but because there just happened to be better candidates than him (even more incredible when you realize his have been elect 3 years). When your career is like Jenkin’s that says a lot about those other candidates.

4. Dobie Moore - Fantastic peak with just enough career at shortstop.

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

6. Hugh Duffy - His credentials are that he was for a time one of the best players and he produced during the 90's. Was an outstanding defensive outfielder.

7. Edd Roush – Appears to be an error of omission. With considerations for hold out credit.

8. Jake Beckley - The career man. What he accomplished during his career is enough to offset the lack of peak, so to speak.

9. Charley Jones – Fantastic hitter from the 19th century. Gets some credit for blacklisting from me.

10. Mickey Welch - The 300 game winner. The discussion of the past couple of “years” has made me realize that Welch should be a HOMer. Is not that far behind Keefe.

11. Bill Monroe - Seems to be one of the best second basemen of his time.

12. Roger Bresnahan - I believe his versatility is a major plus in his case. I can understand not giving him credit if you think his playing time at other positions was worthless but when he was an outfielder he was one of the best ones in the league.

13. Nellie Fox – Outstanding defense and hitting production for a good length of time.

14. Bob Johnson – Have been overlooking Indian Bob. PCL credit counterbalances any war discounts.

15. Vic Willis – Jumps into the top 20. Blame the cohort analysis for making me take another look at Vic.

16. Burleigh Grimes - Has enough big seasons and career bulk to edge him over other similar candidates.

17. Pie Traynor - I'll agree that he is not as great as the praises make him out to be but he still has a worthy resume.

18. Ken Boyer – Giving him a little war credit nudges him into the top 20.

19. Quincey Trouppe – All evidence points to him being a good to great hitter for his position and a solid if not good catcher. Works for me.

20. Gavvy Cravath – One of the enigmas in terms of career interpretation. His career in the majors combined with my interpretation of the other information places him here.

Not on ballot but made Top 10:

Jimmy Wynn – In my top 30.
   174. DanG Posted: November 27, 2006 at 07:07 PM (#2246632)
My “system”? Emphasizes prime and career; give me steady excellence over a fluke year or two. Seeing no need to reinvent the wheel, I look at win shares and WARP and rely on the interpretations of these by other analysts. IMO, our group overvalues peak. There’s also a tendency here to cut and run from well-seasoned candidates.

My ballot, Teddy Bears and all. My #1, #2 and #3 were elected. In 1990 we’ll elect Morgan and Palmer, while Singleton and Otis enter the backlog. Carew is the n-b in 1991; Staub, Oliver and Fingers will generate discussion. The last Elect-2 year in 1992 elects Seaver and Rose(?), and crowds the backlog with Grich, Perez, Cedeno, Harrah and Foster. Another treasure horde of HoMers in 1993: Mr. October, Lefty and Knucksie; The Penguin and Porter may also get some support.

1) Joe Morgan – The drive shaft of the Big Red Machine. Top 30 all-time.

2) Jim Palmer – Overrated by baseball writers; even the Baseball Survivor panel placed him #54 all-time. He’s no better than Fergie, but I don’t see compelling evidence to change their traditional ranking relative to each other.

3) Fergie Jenkins – Fits solidly into the upper middle tier of the Hall. Pitchers with 2700+ IP, ten year span, since 1959:

3089 1966-75 G. Perry
2926 1971-80 P. Niekro
2914 1967-76 F. Jenkins
2837 1959-68 D. Drysdale
2805 1962-71 J. Marichal
2796 1971-80 S. Carlton
2773 1967-76 C. Hunter
2770 1969-78 J. Palmer
2746 1965-74 M. Lolich
2733 1963-72 B. Gibson
2728 1968-77 T. Seaver

4) George Van Haltren (5,2,1) – After 48 years at or near the top of our backlog he’s been repositioned; in six years, 1982 to 1988, he went from the #8 unelected player to #16. Finished out of the top 20 candidates, as Oms passed him last election; we’ve now elected 11 players who were behind him in 1970. Why? Now in his 82nd year eligible. Pennants Added study shows him well. He excelled in the contraction years 1892-1900; he had high SB totals (usually 35-40 in his prime years), which I believe was more important pre-1920; he was a mainly a centerfielder (~71.7% of his non-pitching games vs. ~47.6% for Ryan and 61.5% for Wynn), Ryan (and Duffy) actually played more corner outfield. Players with most stolen bases 1891-1900:
1—660 B. Hamilton
2—443 G. Van Haltren

Players with 2900 times on base 1889-1901:
1—3392 B. Hamilton
2—3134 G. Van Haltren
3—3046 J. Burkett
4—3043 E. Delahanty

5) Edd Roush (6,3,2) – The dude could mash, while playing a stellar centerfield. Played 89.2% of his games in CF. Pitcher’s park hurts his raw stats. Tied with Beckley last election, the first time Eagle Eye failed to beat him. Pennants Added likes him a lot. Players with OPS of .850+, 1917-25, minimum 3800 PA:
1—1.193 B. Ruth
2—1.037 R. Hornsby
3—.975 T. Speaker
4—.961 T. Cobb
5—.931 H. Heilmann
6—.918 G. Sisler
7—.865 Z. Wheat
8—.864 E. Roush

6) Tommy Leach (7,4,4) – Cracked the top twenty in voting in 1988 for the first time since 1949. I think it’s what Bill James once said, that all-around players get overlooked, while specialists get overrated; voters like that one area of dominance. Modern comp to, but just a bit behind, Craig Biggio, he could beat you in many ways. Longevity, defense and speed, more important in that era, rate him above Groh. Versatility is a plus; it should not be assumed that any typical thirdbaseman of the era could have successfully handled CF. Had a better peak than Bobby Wallace, but his career was a couple years shorter and he had just a little less defensive value. Among OFers with 750 games 1905-14, he is 2nd in PO/G (behind Speaker) and 2nd in FA (behind Clarke). I like guys who play; longevity is a hallmark of quality. Of the players with the most games played, 1891-1923, 13 of the top 14 are HoMers:
1—2792 H. Wagner
2—2517 S. Crawford
3—2480 N. Lajoie
4—2450 T. Cobb
5—2443 B. Dahlen
6—2383 B. Wallace
7—2307 E. Collins
8—2242 F. Clarke
9—2232 G. Davis
10-2182 T. Speaker
11-2156 T. Leach
12-2123 W. Keeler
13-2122 J. Sheckard
14-2087 S. Magee

7) Jake Beckley (8,5,5) - He’s Joe Start, but without a peak and retired four years sooner. Grade B fielder, won four WS GG. The many triples were the product of a strange park in Pittsburgh, as his other stats do not suggest good foot speed. Top ten seasons in win shares for Beckley and the other long-career first basemen of his era:
23-21-21-20-19-19-18-18-18-17 J. Beckley
31-26-21-21-19-19-18-17-17-14 H. Davis
25-25-22-21-19-19-17-17-17-15 F. Tenney
24-22-21-20-16-14-13-13-12-11 D. McGann
30-20-17-17-16-13-12-11-11-10 T. Tucker
19-18-17-17-17-12-12-10-10-09 J. Doyle

8) Charlie Keller (10,7,7) – Kiner’s election should cinch his. Recent discussion highlights how he had a long, really high prime. I give full credit for missed war time. His last minor league year was also of great value, he gets credit there, too. Players with OPS within .090 of CK’s, 1938-51, minimum 4500 PA:
1—1.116 T. Williams
2—1.015 S. Musial
3—.970 J. DiMaggio
4—.961 J. Mize
5—.928 C. Keller
6—.915 M Ott
7—.884 B. Johnson
8—.881 J. Heath
9—868 T. Henrich
10-.850 E. Slaughter
11-.840 R. Cullenbine

9) Burleigh Grimes (9,6,6) – Comparable to Wynn. Has the heft I like in a career. Pitchers with 3800+ IP, 1916-75. The top ten are all HoMers, nearly:

1—5244 W. Spahn
2—4689 R. Roberts
3—4564 E. Wynn
4—4344 R. Ruffing

5—4180 B. Grimes
6—4161 T. Lyons
7—3941 L. Grove
8—3897 E. Rixey
9—3884 B. Gibson
10—3827 B. Feller

10) Ken Boyer (12,11,14) – Evidence that he deserves a year or so for war credit moves him up. His adjusted WS go to ~305.

11) Roger Bresnahan (11,9,8) – A couple more voters now (11) have some regard for The Duke of Tralee. Versatility should be a bonus, not a demerit. How many other catchers could have been pulled out from behind the plate to be an all-star in centerfield? Could move higher, but I really like guys who play. Played half his teams’ games in only 11 seasons, averaging 71% of team games in those years. Still, his offensive production towers over other catchers of his era, so he deserves a vote. Defense only C+. Players with OBP over .390, 1903-14 (minimum 3100 PA):
1—.424 T. Cobb
2—.420 E. Collins
3—.413 T. Speaker
4—.401 R. Bresnahan
5—.400 H. Wagner
6—.399 F. Chance
7—.396 R. Thomas

12) Jimmy Ryan (13,10,10,) – Browning had one skill; Ryan could do it all. As a SNT he finished ahead of seven HoMers; the order in the teens was Duffy-Ryan-GVH-Beckley. Usually trailing those guys were Caruthers-Pearce-Pike-Jennings-Griffith-Childs. To those 12 voters who had GVH in their top ten last ballot, how do you justify snubbing Ryan? Most extra-base hits, ten-year period 1876-1903:
632 1893-02 E. Delahanty
550 1887-96 S. Thompson
549 1886-95 R. Connor
542 1883-92 D. Brouthers
525 1883-92 H. Stovey
487 1890-99 J. Beckley
481 1893-02 J. Kelley
458 1888-97 J. Ryan
453 1888-97 M. Tiernan
Most outfielder Assists, 1876-1918
1—375 J. Ryan
2—348 G. VanHaltren
3—348 Tom Brown
4—307 J. Sheckard
5—289 O. Shaffer
6—285 K. Kelly
7—283 S. Thompson

13) Rabbit Maranville (14,13,15) – My other Lost Cause, along with Ryan. Fourth time on ballot. Every career voter should have him on their radar. WARP1 is 134.5, even better than Beckley’s 116.0 (high of 8.0). That includes four years better than 10.0. Plus he’s due nearly a year of war credit, which adds another 8.0 WARP1. Career WARP3 is 105.5, easily in HoMer country. Career win shares, with war credit and adjusted to 162 games, is 339, including 124 in his top five seasons.

14) Quincy Trouppe (--,--,--) – First time on ballot. Recent discussion shows me he’s the most deserving NeL candidate out there, all the signs are positive. He may very well be the best catcher candidate as well.

15) Wally Schang (15,12,12) –There’s not a dime’s worth of difference between him and Bresnahan. He’s still on the radar. Players with OBP of .390+, 1915-29, 5600+ PA:
1—.475 B. Ruth
2—.439 T. Cobb
3—.436 R. Hornsby
4—.435 T. Speaker
5—.427 E. Collins
6—.412 H. Heilmann
7—.399 J. Sewell
8—.398 W. Schang
9—.393 K. Williams

Top tenners off ballot:

Fox has been on my ballot and will be again.

Moore used to get my vote, but I’m not so sure his peak was really Jennings-esque, so he’s slipped a bit.

Wynn is a bit short on career, but definitely on my radar. Would be on if he’d played more center field.

Browning and Jones are lagging among the 19th century OF candidates; nice peaks in very weak leagues. Also, I don’t believe that fielding value is at all well measured pre-1893, so I’m very wary of electing a couple more bats from that era.
   175. Mike Webber Posted: November 27, 2006 at 08:23 PM (#2246693)
I mostly use win shares, and try to look at the total value of the player’s career, with recognition that big seasons are more valuable in getting your team to the pennant than steady production.

1) JOE MORGAN – Morgan, Collins, Hornsby.
3) FERGIE JENKINS – I have bounced between Palmer and Jenkins, but the decided ERA+ advantage trumps the 600 IP advantage for Fergie. Glad they are going in together.
4) EDD ROUSH –Why I think Edd is better than Wynn. More career win shares, with out any schedule adjustment. Played his whole career in center field, while Wynn spent 1/3 of his career elsewhere while Ron Davis and Roland Office played center. Significant lead in both black and gray ink – both played in generally poor hitters parks.
5) JIMMY WYNN – Why I think Jimmy Wynn is better than Edd. PRO+ is slightly higher. Played in a tougher environment, especially when you add in the Federal League. While both played in poor hitters parks, Wynn’s style was more adversely affected by the Astrodome than Redland/Crosley Field hurt singles hitting Roush.
6) TOMMY LEACH – 300+ Wins Shares, big peak, excellent defensive player at third and in centerfield. Only 1 MVP type season.
7) NELLIE FOX –300+ Win shares, good Black Ink and Gray Ink scores. Good defender at a key defensive slot.
8) ROGER BRESNAHAN Best catcher of his era. Like Leach a combo-position player that is hard to sum up what his contributions were, because he doesn’t nest into one position.
9) PHIL RIZZUTO – with a conservative 60 or so win shares during the war, I move him ahead of Sewell. Same arguments as Nellie Fox, only with a 3 year hole in his career, plus a bad return to MLB in 1946.
10) SAL BANDO - I have had Boyer fairly high on my ballot and I think Bando is better. I’ve lowered Boyer and slotted Bando ahead of him. The big seasons are what puts him ahead of Boyer.
12) ALE OMS Based on the info we have I would consider him just above the in/out line for outfielders.
13) LOU BROCK – As a career voter I’ll put him here. 348 wins shares, his loss shares are the piece of the puzzle we don’t have.
14) VIC WILLIS - an old favorite of mine, huge win share total, big seasons. Whenever I go to a more mechanical system he pops up the charts.
15) BOBBY MURCER - His big seasons put him ahead of Reggie Smith, and his defensive value is ahead of Singleton.

Should we throw out Dimino’s ballot because he didn’t comment on all of the top 10 returners? (cough, Roush).

Dobie Moore and Charley Jones – same argument, great players in suspect leagues, who need all kinds of extra credit.

Pete Browning – Weak league, shoddy fielding reputation, short career…

Newbies – Ken Singleton – just off the ballot, he could have nosed Murcer, except I think Murcer’s defense has to give him an edge. Very close.

Amos Otis – problems include in season durability, and a very deep position to fight through.
   176. . . . . . . . . . . Posted: November 27, 2006 at 08:53 PM (#2246718)
Wynn’s style was more adversely affected by the Astrodome than Redland/Crosley Field hurt singles hitting Roush.


This is a myth...I thought the same way, but I calculated Wynn's OPS+ in home and away games, and his Home OPS+ is higher than his Away OPS+. No, I can't explain it either, but my guess is that FB-heavy guys were actually helped by the Astrodome.
   177. TomH Posted: November 27, 2006 at 09:07 PM (#2246734)
This observatin is probably correct (yest has alluded to it also), but does it adjust for the normal home-fied advantage? MOST players have a higher OPS+ at home; typically about a 3 or 4 pt difference.
   178. Andrew M Posted: November 27, 2006 at 09:51 PM (#2246775)
1990 Ballot

1. (new) Joe Morgan. Best post-1950 2B.

2. (new) Jim Palmer.
3. (4) Ferguson Jenkins.
We’ll elect them both, of course, but I have a hard time deciding which of these guys I like better. In the end, I think Palmer was maybe a little better at his best—but his teams were a lot better and league worse, so I could be persuaded otherwise.

4. (2) Dobie Moore. If you take into account his army years, he appears to have been a great player for more than a Jennings-esque 5 years--and high peak SS’s are hard to find.

5. (6) Nellie Fox. Durable (never had fewer than 600 ABs between 1951-1962), consistent, got on base a lot, and was excellent fielder at an important defensive position for more than 2300 games. 94 OPS+ is OBP heavy and dragged down by some poor years at the very beginning and end of his career.

6. (7) Larry Doyle. Career OPS+ of 126, and he was consistently in the NL top 10 in HRs and slugging pct. He also won an MVP award and was an 8-time STATS NL all-star. Best offensive player on the best offensive team in the league 1911-1913. By all accounts played extremely hard and captained the team for several years. And, you know, Joe Morgan wasn’t a great fielder either.

7. (8) Edd Roush. There are some peculiar things about his career—holdouts, the Federal League, etc.—and it isn’t readily apparent that Roush was better than some of the other eligible OFs with around 8000 career plate appearances, e.g. Burns, Veach, Cuyler, Manush, Bob Johnson, Minoso, Jimmy Wynn. To me, though, his 5 year peak between 1917-1921 where he was in the top 4 in OPS+ and playing A-level CF (according to Win Shares—WARP thinks less of his fielding) seems slightly higher than those other OFs, and his career was significantly longer than the OFs with higher peaks (e.g. Kiner, Keller). In other words, Roush balances both peak (three 30+ Win Shares seasons, six seasons above 8 WARP and 140 OPS+) and career (above 100 WARP and 300 WS) better than the other eligible candidates.

8. (9) Geo. Van Haltren. It gets tiresome typing his name every two weeks, but he did everything well for a long time during a difficult era. He even pitched decently. Some measures (e.g. Win Shares) make him look like a clear HoM-er; other measures make a less compelling argument.

9. (10) Dick Redding. Long career, decent peak. I’m not completely sold on him, but I don’t think he’s far off Jenkins. Honestly, though, this is just a guess.

10. (11) Tommy Bridges. Like Billy Pierce, he’s not really a peak or career candidate. His top ERA+ season is 147, but he had six seasons between 140 and 147—and ten seasons in which he was in the top 10 in the AL. And while he wasn’t much of a workhorse, he did finish in the top 10 in innings five times.

11. (12) Jimmy Wynn. An unusual, relatively brief career, but he got on base a ton, hit for power, seems to have been a decent fielder, and had one of the best of all nicknames.

12. (13) Quincy Trouppe. I don’t have much of a sense of his defense, but assuming he was at least average, I think he looks pretty similar in career length and quality to Bill Freehan, though his skills were different.

13. (14) George J. Burns. Arguably the best NL OF of the 1910s. Rarely missed a game, had 3 MVP caliber seasons (1914, 1917, 1919) and averaged close to 27 Win Shares a season for a decade.

14. (15) Tommie Leach. Long career, excellent fielder at both CF and 3B. Hit enough for 3B.

15. (new) Charlie Keller. I’ve resisted voting for him until now because he only had 4600 plate appearances and his best years were during the war. With all the borderline corner OFs coming on the ballot, I’ve looked at him again and have a hard time not thinking his career before the age of 30 was better than any other available OF. Not much after that, of course, but if I can vote for Dobie Moore in good conscience, why not Charlie Keller?

Next 10
Phil Rizzuto
Luis Tiant
Bucky Walters
Ken Singleton
Alejandro Oms
Jimmy Ryan
Ken Boyer or Sal Bando
Indian Bob Johnson
Reggie Smith
Vern Stephens

Required Disclosures:
Ken Boyer. I’ve voted for him before. Currently just off the ballot, though if push came to shove, I’d probably place Bando above him on the ballot.
Pete Browning. Browning could hit, but so could a lot of these guys.
   179. fra paolo Posted: November 27, 2006 at 09:56 PM (#2246779)
I don't care for One Big Number systems of ranking players except as a way of making an initial cut. I vote on the basis of achievements during prime, working on the basis of an average season during the prime, and defining prime differently for pitchers, hitting positions (1b+OF) and fielding positions (remaining IF). I apply a fairly strict positional balance policy, but with some comparisons to people already in the HoM (eg, if catcher X, then catcher Y, too). I also prefer, where possible, to measure ability against position as opposed to the overall league. The letter code after each player shows how I would vote for them in a 'yes/no' binary system like a real HoF ballot.
1 Joe Morgan The Best Secondbaseman Ever? Maybe. The Worst Commentator Ever? No.
2 Jim Palmer He's got two of those peak seasons I like, 1973 and 1975, and packs a lot of value in a 10-year prime.
3 Jimmy Wynn Way underrated. I think he provides an excellent combination of batting and fielding production.
4 Ken Boyer Boyer is an excellent third baseman in an 11-year prime. Another underrated candidate.
5 Thurman Munson Closer to Freehan over prime than people seem to think, I rate these two as of equal value. If you voted for Freehan, but have not voted for Munson, I'd urge you to look again.
6 Charley Jones A dominant bat in his era, given a boost because of his missing years owing to a salary dispute.
7 Alejandro Oms Oms beats out a crowded field of outer circle HoMer types because he has got the longest prime.
8 Orlando Cepeda By virtue of height of prime, he's first at first at the moment.
9 Dave Bancroft I think he's the best shortstop in the backlog at the moment. His main drawback is a lack of playing time.
10 Bucky Walters. Equivalent to Pierce over his prime, but offers more high-impact seasons in contrast to greater consistency.
11 Pete Browning He finishes ahead of Roush on peak value, even with some deductions for his competition level.
12 Ken Singleton I wouldn't call him underrated, but he's neglected. He's got a very good OPS+ against RFs in his league during 1973-82. Is he ahead of Browning? Maybe, but I'd like to mull that one over some more.
13 Bill Mazeroski By the measures I'm using, he adds more value as a fielder than any other player I've ever examined.
14 Elston Howard He is a very good catcher, comparable to Freehan and Munson, mainly owing to his defense.
15 Sal Bando My positional balance fetish returns Bando to my ballot. A very good bat married to a very poor glove. By my preferred batting measure, OPS+ against League position, he scores way ahead of Boyer (201 in 1973!). But his Fielding Runs are atrocious, and I give a lot of weight to fielding at 3b.

Fallen off ballot
Lou Brock. I think Tommy Bridges has a better case, overall, in spite of having a third pitcher being a violation of my positional balance creed.
Tommy Bridges got shunted off by Mr Palmer.

Esteemed newcomers:
Amos Otis got a look, but finished too far behind Wynn for me to imagine him having any chance of making the ballot. I don't imagine him being better than Roush either, another reason for not giving detailed scrutiny to Otis.

Required disclosures
Ferguson Jenkins isn't really peak enough for me.
Nellie Fox: I don't think he's overall as valuable as Mazeroski. Fielding Win Shares may overrate Fox, and while Mazeroski isn't close to Fox as a hitter, I give more weight to defensive contributions at 2b.
Edd Roush has been on and off my ballot at various times. Lately, I've reduced the discount for Browning's AA years, which moved him ahead of the Reds' CF.
Dobie Moore: His career was too short.

I would only vote for Rick Monday if you took me into a dark alley and threatened me with gun. Or if Youppi said it was OK.
   180. DL from MN Posted: November 27, 2006 at 10:06 PM (#2246792)
> Ferguson Jenkins isn't really peak enough for me.

Five times in the top 3 in Cy Young voting is pretty peaky.
   181. OCF Posted: November 27, 2006 at 11:05 PM (#2246839)
Five times in the top 3 in Cy Young voting is pretty peaky.

And that's with sharing his times with Gibson and Perry, among others. There was some real competition at the top.

I have a "big years" score built into my RA+ equivalent system. Some sample values of that score: Gibson 84, Palmer (defense adjusted): 57, Perry 54, Jenkins 44, Bunning 44, Pierce 36, Drysdale 31, Kaat 13. If you want to complain about a lack of peak, take it out on Kaat, not Jenkins.
   182. sunnyday2 Posted: November 27, 2006 at 11:24 PM (#2246855)
I'd say the voters are taking it out on Kaat, pretty good.
   183. Mark Donelson Posted: November 27, 2006 at 11:24 PM (#2246856)
If you want to complain about a lack of peak, take it out on Kaat, not Jenkins.

This peakster agrees. In my PRAA-based system, Jenkins's peak matches those of guys like Vic Willis and Jim Bunning, and is better than that of Walters.
   184. . . . . . . . . . . Posted: November 27, 2006 at 11:56 PM (#2246886)
This observatin is probably correct (yest has alluded to it also), but does it adjust for the normal home-fied advantage? MOST players have a higher OPS+ at home; typically about a 3 or 4 pt difference.

I don't know the "global" Home/Away split for OPS+, but for the handful of guys I've done the numbers for, Wynn was around to slightly-above average in terms of home field advantage.
   185. Arrieta, Gentile Arrieta Posted: November 28, 2006 at 12:22 AM (#2246902)
1990 ballot:

1. Joe Morgan: I already knew he was great, but he was even better than I thought.

2. Jim Palmer
3. Ferguson Jenkins
Palmer’s ahead on just about every qualitative measurement. Jenkins has a few more WS and warp3s in about 500 more innings. Both are way ahead of the field.

4. Roger Bresnahan: Great player whose versatility illustrates his quality. (eligible 1921, PHOM 1929)

5. Nellie Fox: 94 OPS+ is a little off-putting, but he was a top-notch defender, durable, very valuable to the White Sox offensively and defensively. 8 all-star caliber seasons. (eligible 1971, PHOM 1977)

6. Burleigh Grimes: 270 wins, .560 W%, Retro-Cy, 5 STATS AS, 9 all-star quality seasons. (eligible 1940, PHOM 1942)

7. Carl Mays: Good peak candidate, pretty good hitter. (eligible 1935, PHOM 1986)

8. Ken Boyer: Best 3b candidate by a nose over Traynor & Elliott. (eligible 1975, PHOM 1987)

9. Pie Traynor: Largely forgotten here, but had 11 quality seasons and was a 6-time STATS all-star. What’s wrong with him? (eligible 1941, PHOM 1987)

10. Orlando Cepeda: Edges Cash as a 1b candidate. Better peak, one more good season, MVP (whether deserved or not). (eligible 1980)

11. Bobby Bonds: I hadn’t really looked closely at him at first. I’m more impressed with him than Wynn, so I’m slotting him around where Jimmy had been. (eligible 1987)

12. Lefty Gomez: Low innings total, but a terrific peak, more career than Dean, good black & gray ink, HOFS, HOFM, W-L, ERA+. Yes, he pitched for a lot of good teams. I think he had something to do with them being good. (eligible 1948)

13. Dick Redding: Long career flame-thrower, top 5(?) Negro League pitcher. HOF vote still bothers me a bit; he’d be higher if it didn’t. (eligible 1937, PHOM 1966)

14. Dizzy Dean: There’s not much besides the incredible, brief peak, but if we’re looking for greatness in candidates, he had it. (eligible 1946)

15. Jimmy Wynn: Well-rounded candidate, good peak, career. (eligible 1983)

Required comments:
Dobie Moore: High quality, but short career hurts.
Edd Roush: He’s been off my radar a long time, I was surprised to see him so high, so I checked his thread. I’m not inclined to give credit for his mini-, midi- and maxi-holdouts. I’m also not wowed by his numbers in context of the time.
Pete Browning: Monster hitter, pretty monstrous on defense. Just off. (eligible 1899, PHOM 1927)
   186. DavidFoss Posted: November 28, 2006 at 12:25 AM (#2246905)
Jenkins's ERA+ numbers are nothing to get too excited about. The IP numbers are needed to show the magnitude of his peak. He was a workhorse. Guys with similar non-stratospheric-ERA+/high-IP peaks are Bob Lemon and Dizzy Dean (and of course Warren Spahn).

I gotta run... so no cap standing update until tomorrow or so. :-)
   187. KJOK Posted: November 28, 2006 at 12:28 AM (#2246910)
Using OWP w/playing time, Player Overall Wins Score, and defense (Win Shares/BP/Fielding Runs) for position players, applied to .500 baseline. Using Runs Saved Above Average, Player Overall WInsScore and Support Neutral Fibonacci Wins for Pitchers. For Position Players AND Pitchers, heavily weight comparison vs. contemporaries, and lightly look at WARP1 and Win Shares.

1. JOE MORGAN, 2B. 67 POW, 512 Win Shares, 172 WARP1, 820 RCAP & .693 OWP in 11,329 PA’s. Def: AVERAGE. Probably in the top 3 at his position all-time.

2. JIM PALMER, P. 34 POW, 312 Win Shares, 107 WARP1, 314 RSAA, 232 Neut Fib Wins and 125 ERA+ in 3,948 innings. Slightly better than Jenkins.

3. FERGUSON JENKINS, P.30 POW, 323 Win Shares, 126 WARP1, 271 RSAA, 238 Neut_Fibonacci_Wins, and 115 ERA+ in 4,501 innings. Another year in and year out star player.

4. ROGER BRESNAHAN, C. 23 POW, 231 Win Shares, 75 WARP1, 282 RCAP & .651 OWP in 5,373 PA’s. Def: AVERAGE. He’s no Berra, but was best Catcher from 1880s – 1915.

5. JOHN McGRAW, 3B. 20 POW, 78 WARP1, 459 RCAP & .727 OWP in 4,909 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Was CAREER ALL-TIME OBP% leader until Ruth qualifies in 1923, EVEN adjusting for League, and is STILL #3 behind Williams and Ruth. AND he played 3B, where offensive output was generally very low. Plus led his team to 3 consecutive championships. Oh, AND at least 2nd best 3B between 1875-1900!

6. BOB JOHNSON, LF. 36 POW, 102 WARP1, 319 RCAP & .651 OWP in 8,047 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Many many very very good seasons. Best OF candidate not elected.

7. GENE TENACE, C/1B. 26 POW, 231 Win Shares, 73 WARP1, 244 RCAP & .670 OWP in 5,525 PA’s. Def: FAIR. Highly underrated, and very close to Bresnahan in performance.

8. REGGIE SMITH, CF/RF. 32 POW, 325 Win Shares, 99 WARP1, 281 RCAP & .653 OWP in 8,050 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Hit like a 1st baseman, yet could play multiple defensive positions well.

9. FRANK CHANCE, 1B. 23 POW, 72 WARP1, 308 RCAP & .720 OWP in 5,099 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Excellent hitter and good fielder back when 1st base was MUCH more important defensively. Top seasons better than Beckley’s best. Deadball era offensive stars continue to get no respect….

10. QUINCY TROUPPE, C. Estimated 115 OPS+ over 8,462 PA’s. Def: AVERAGE. Comp looks to be Gary Carter. He could hit for a catcher, and seems to have been AT LEAST average defensively. One of the best major league teams was willing to give him a chance at age 39, which I think says something about his talent.

11. BEN TAYLOR, 1B. Estimated 138 OPS+ over 9,091 PA’s. Def: FAIR. Comps are Fred McGriff and Mule Suttles. Too bad his best years were pre-live ball, pre-Negro Leagues, but we do have his 1921 stats that show his greatness. He’s Bill Terry plus about 3 more Bill Terry type seasons.

12. DAVE BANCROFT, SS. 36 POW, 269 Win Shares, 111 WARP1, 157 RCAP & .498 OWP in 8,244 PA’s. Def: EXCELLENT. Similar to Bobby Wallace and Ozzie Smith, so surprised he’s not getting more votes.

13. NORM CASH, 1B. 31 POW, 315 Win Shares, 102 WARP1, 295 RCAP & .671 OWP in 7,910 PAs. Def: EXCELLENT. Obviously underrated player who just needs more in-season PT to make a high ballot slot.

14. DICK REDDING, P. 183 MLE Neut_Fibonacci_Wins, and 114 MLE ERA+ in 3,556 innings. Was the 2nd best Negro League Pitcher in his era, behind only Williams.

15. TONY MULLANE, P.30 POW, 89 WARP1, 241 RSAA, 240 Neut_Fibonacci_Wins, and 118 ERA+ in 4,531(!) innings. He could hit a little too. Had a very good career AND some really good individual seasons. AA discount keeps him from being a TOP 5 ballot player.



KEN SINGLETON, RF. 20 POW, 302 Win Shares, 85 WARP1, 251 RCAP & .643 OWP in 8,558 PA’s. Def: FAIR. Nice career, but not Reggie Smith level.

AMOS OTIS, CF. 12 POW, 286 Win Shares, 85 WARP1, 136 RCAP & .578 OWP in 8,558 PA’s. Def: VERY GOOD. One of the best CF’ers of the 1970’s.


KEN BOYER, 3B. 20 POW, 96 WARP1, 122 RCAP & .561 OWP in 8,268 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Slightly early demise and only ‘very good’ offense keeps him from being higher.

JIMMY WYNN, CF. 30 POW, 98 WARP1, 202 RCAP & .634 OWP in 8,010 PA’s. Def: AVERAGE. Better than Kiner overall.

NELLIE FOX, 2B. 14 POW, 93 WARP1, 129 RCAP & .483 OWP in 10,349 PAs. Def: EXCELLENT. Too many other quality 2nd basemen still better than him, such as Childs.

DOBIE MOORE, SS. Wish we had good MLE’s for him. Hard to tell if he’s ballot-worthy or far from it. Could be close to Hugh Jennings comp. Based on reputation and known data, just not quite there.

EDD ROUSH, CF. 10 POW, 110 WARP1, 205 RCAP & .622 OWP in 8,156 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Edge of playing CF not enough to overcome Bob Johnson’s edge in offense.

PETE BROWNING, CF/LF. 28 POW, 95 WARP1, 478 RCAP & .745 OWP in 5,315 PAs. Def: POOR. Baseball’s premier hitter in the 1880’s. Much better hitter than any eligible outfielder, but only around 6th best CF in 30 year period.

CHARLIE JONES, LF. 19 POW, 71 WARP1, 245 RCAP & .697 OWP in 3,958 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Not a lot of PAs due to short schedules and suspension, but lots of offensive production.

JAKE BECKLEY, 1B. 23 POW, 115 WARP1, 245 RCAP & .596 OWP in 10,492 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. A very good for a long time player. Possibly best first baseman from 1880 – 1920, but I’m not 100% sold he was better than Chance or even Taylor.

CHARLIE KELLER, LF. 22 POW, 67 WARP1, 291 RCAP & .748 OWP in 4,604 PAs. Def: AVERAGE He was very good when he played, but McGraw & Chance were even better ‘short career’ choices relative to position, peers, etc.

BUCKY WALTERS, P.25 POW, 89 WARP1, 161 RSAA, 166 Neut_Fibonacci_Wins, and 115 ERA+ in 3,104 innings. Hitting helps him, but doesn’t quite stack up to other pitchers.

HUGH DUFFY, CF/LF. 5 POW, 95 WARP1, 154 RCAP & .623 OWP in 7,838 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Just not in the elite OF class offensively, and fielding runs doesn’t even like his defense (-31).
   188. Tiboreau Posted: November 28, 2006 at 12:36 AM (#2246916)
1. 2b Joe Morgan (nc)
2. sp Jim Palmer (nc)
3. sp Ferguson Jenkins (4)—It's close between Palmer & Jenkins; Palmer has the peak advantage, but did benefit from historically great defenses. In the end, though, it doesn't matter since both will be elected!
4. lf Charlie Keller (5, 4)—After WWII credit Keller’s peak, while not quite as high, is sufficiently stronger than Kiner’s to slip ahead. King Kong also receives credit for his last year with the Newark Bears.
5. ss Dobie Moore (6, 3)—Since his candidacy is based on his stellar peak (as well as pre-1920 credit) his numbers are underrated due to regression. Receives credit for his play with the 25th Infantry Wreckers from 1917 to 1920.
6. sp Dizzy Dean (7, 7)—For five years he was among the greatest pitchers of all-time. Sadly, his career essentially comprises of those five years. The greatest peak among eligible pitching candidates.
7. 3b Al Rosen (8, 8)—Flip's candidacy is similar to Dean's: five excellent seasons without much else. Career cut short by Keltner at the front end and back injuries at opposite end.
8. cf Alejandro Oms (9, 9)—The Cuban Enos Slaughter: only one season over 30 WS, but 8 over 25; considering the effects of regression, had a nice peak as well as a real good career (340 WS).
9. sp Bucky Walters (10, 5)—When at his best he was not only excellent pitcher but an inning eater as well. More career value than Wes Ferrell but less peak value, especially considering the decreased competition during the war.
10. cf Jimmy Wynn (11, 11)—One of my favorite ballplayers from before my time, an underrated ballplayer considering era and ballpark who combined speed and patience with surprising power for his stature, I’m happy to see him rate well. A real good peak, although the Toy Cannon’s inconsistency, mixing mediocre seasons with superb, hurts him a bit.
11. c Elston Howard (12, 12)—After pre-MLB credit, a similar player to Roger Bresnahan; his peak is slightly better, career slightly shorter. Howard jumps ahead Bresnahan, however, due to the fact that he was entirely a catcher during his peak, while Bresnahan spent significant time in the outfield during his best years.
12. 3b Ken Boyer (13, 14)—Looking solely at Win Shares, would dally with Doyle & Fox in the mid-20s; the combination of WARP's rating of his defense and the under-representation of 3b in the HoM pushes Boyer onto my ballot.
13. cf Edd Roush (14, 15)—Missed playing time hurts, but still has a real good peak that is a bit overshadowed by WWI. Career puts him ahead of Berger, while peak puts him ahead of Ryan & Van Haltren (Pen. Add., excluding pitching WS: Roush, .793; Ryan, .781; Van Haltren, .771).
14. sp Carl Mays (15, ob)—While he benefited from some excellent defenses, Sub still had a sound, if inconsistent, peak.
15. c Roger Bresnahan (ob)—See Elston Howard.

Required Disclosures:
21. 2b Nellie Fox (ob)—Two real good seasons plus several average ones puts the Fox just off my ballot in the company of Doyle, Larry Doyle.
44. cf Pete Browning (ob)—Appears to me to be an 1880s version of Cravath & Arlett: an all bat, no field outfielder playing in the inferior league of his era. Considering the standards set for such players, all three, by varying degrees, fall just shy of my ballot.
   189. Spencer Benedict Posted: November 28, 2006 at 12:48 AM (#2246925)
1. Joe Morgan
2. Jim Palmer
3. Ferguson Jenkins: Indeed, his peak is obscured only by the fact that it went on for so long.
4. Lou Brock: I’m prejudiced in favor of the 3000-900 club. Maybe he wasn’t the sabermetric ideal, but he was a top flight player. The fact that I can joke about a “club” does say something about the player.
5. Tony Oliva: All over the leader boards. Had an eight year “peak” 1964-1971.
6. Jimmy Wynn: Six seasons with an OPS+ of 140 or greater.
7. Orlando Cepeda: This is where the “next tier” begins. Had one foot in the door before he was 26. He won an MVP after that.
8. Carl Mays: 81 games over .500 and a career 119 ERA+. B-R says he is the cousin of Joe Mays.
9. Dobie Moore: .360 hitting SS. An “extreme peak” selection.
10. Nellie Fox: Did quite well in the MVP voting in a sluggers era.
11. Ken Boyer: Better than sold for a decade. I can’t see him going any higher
12. Luis Tiant: Two-time ERA+ leader and four-time twenty game winner
13. Norm Cash: Durability is a concern. Otherwise, he ranks much higher
14. Jake Beckley: Dropped several notches when I compared him with Staub.
15. Edd Roush: Had a number of elite season, but I like a little more power for a player from that era.

I left Browning off my ballot because I am unsure of the level of competition. He may reappear in the future. I keep almost including Dizzy Dean, but while his half decade was great, its not Koufax and maybe not Dobie Moore. I don’t see a lot of difference between 7-15 on my ballot. Indian Bob knocks on the door.
   190. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 28, 2006 at 01:01 AM (#2246937)
The election is now over. Results will be posted shortly.
   191. fra paolo Posted: November 28, 2006 at 09:42 AM (#2247212)
In my PRAA-based system, Jenkins's peak ... is better than that of Walters

For pitchers I have been using Pitching Runs as awarded in the ESPN Encyclopedia to help me rank them. It's an old-fashioned system, but I don't believe the "neo-sabermetric" revolution has added that much value in a debate like this, as I'm not sure I'd vote for either in a straight yes/no election. Anyway, PRs rate the pair as follows:

Jenkins 37-36-28-27-22
Walters 54-44-34-27-18

Three or five year, it looks like Walters has the better peak.

As for Cy Young Awards, my beloved Encyclopedia awards Ex-Post-Facto ones, and Walters has three, compared with Jenkins' Real One.

Anyway, the point is moot now.

What's not moot is my use of the Encyclopedia's linear weights. I am moving gradually toward Davenport Translations as my metric of choice, because I think this gives a better assessment of fielding. We'll have to wait and see how that affects other parts of my ballot.

I'm also less enthusiastic about my averaging system, but that wouldn't have helped Jenkins. OTOH, getting an accurate measure of fielding seems to me a higher priority than sorting out the averaging system.
   192. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 28, 2006 at 02:11 PM (#2247272)
I am moving gradually toward Davenport Translations as my metric of choice, because I think this gives a better assessment of fielding.


Are you sure you want to do that? That's a can of worms....

I mean better than linear weights? Maybe, I don't know how the ESPN 'cyclopeia calculates fielding and whether its fielding suffers th same ills as the TB fielding stuff. But there's some issues with DTs that we've discussed many, many times, particularly about DT fielding overrating fielders by its use of a low, low replacement value for fielders.
   193. fra paolo Posted: November 28, 2006 at 03:06 PM (#2247326)
But there's some issues with DTs that we've discussed many, many times, particularly about DT fielding overrating fielders by its use of a low, low replacement value for fielders.

I've read those, Dr C, and as a consequence I'm leery of WARP. However, it's not clear to me that BRAA, PRAA and FRAA are affected.

The ESPN fielding <u>is</u> affected by TB's fielding ills. It was Mazeroski who propelled me into comparing DTs with straight FRs, and I think DTs are better. I don't like Fielding Win Shares, and would much rather work from the claim points that WS allocates to players.

In fact, my current opinion is that everybody is chasing down the wrong fork in the road, and we need to think about pre-PBP fielding a little bit differently.
   194. jimd Posted: November 28, 2006 at 06:52 PM (#2247593)
particularly about DT fielding overrating fielders by its use of a low, low replacement value for fielders

Funny how people always bring that up, yet the same people never complain about Win Shares overrating hitters due to its use of a low, low, lower replacement value for hitters. WARP balances the replacement levels on both sides.

I don't like Fielding Win Shares

Neither do I, but. There are some good ideas in the FWS, ideas which may be being integrated into the DT's over time.

The big problem with FWS is they do not do a good job isolating the individual performance from the team fielding performance. (See the Sewell/Rizzuto debate of a few years back, and the Roy Thomas example on the Bresnahan thread.) Be on a great fielding team, and you too can get a lot of fielding WS. That idea is as valid as the conclusion that Koenig and Dugan were good hitters in 1927 just because the Yankees had a team OPS+ of 137.
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