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

Monday, December 11, 2006

1991 Results: (In This Order) Carew, Boyer, and Moore For the Hall of Merit!

In his first year of eligibility, hitting star Rod Carew was the top vote-getter for this “year’s” Hall of Merit election, earning an excellent 99% of all possible points.

After 17 previous times, Cardinal great Ken Boyer finally made it on the 18th with 35% of all possible points.

Taking the third spot by winning a competitive battle with a couple of the backloggers, standout NeL shortstop Dobie Moore was inducted with only 30% of the vote after 60 years on the ballot. That percentage is now the lowest ever recorded, shattering the record shared by Bobby Doerr and Clark Griffith of 34% from the early Seventies. Moore is now the 26th NeLer inducted by the electorate.

Rounding out the top-ten were: Nellie Fox, Jimmy Wynn, Quincey Trouppe (big leap back into the top-ten!), Edd Roush, Charlie Keller, Rollie Fingers (makes it into the top-ten his first time!), and Jake Beckley.

RK   LY  Player                   PTS  Bal   1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9 10 11 12 13 14 15
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 1  n/e  Rod Carew               1286   54  51  1  1  1                                 
 2    4  Ken Boyer                455   34      1  3  3  2  3  3  3  2  3  6  2  2     1
 3    7  Dobie Moore              387   26      6  1  2  2  2  2  2  2     1  2     1  3
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4    6  Nellie Fox               385   26      1  4  5  1  2  4     2  2  2     1  1  1
 5    5  Jimmy Wynn               366   29      1  2  3     1  6  1  3  1  2  2  4  1  2
 6   11  Quincy Trouppe           357   25      2  3  3  2     1  6        3  2  1  2   
 7   10  Edd Roush                353   26      1  3  1  5  2  2     1  4     1  3  2  1
 8    9  Charlie Keller           343   22   1  3  3  2     4  1  1  1  1  1  1  1  1  1
 9  n/e  Rollie Fingers           337   27      4  2  1  2  1     1  2     1  2  2  2  7
10   12  Jake Beckley             333   23      3  3  2  1  3     1  2  2  1     1  2  2
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
11    8  Pete Browning            332   22      2  4  2  1  1  2  1  3  2  2     1     1
12   14  Cannonball Dick Redding  302   21      4     1  1  5  2     1  1  2  2     1  1
13   13  Charley Jones            291   17      4  3  2  2  1  1  1  1              1  1
14   15  Bucky Walters            275   20      3  1     3  1  1  2  1  2  1  2     1  2
15   17  Bob Johnson              267   19      1  1  2  4  1  1  1  3  1  1  2     1   
16   16  Hugh Duffy               244   17      1  1  2  1  1  5  2     2  1           1
17   18  Gavvy Cravath            237   20      1     4     1     2     2  2  4  1  1  2
18   19  George Van Haltren       215   14      2  2  1  2  1     1  1  1     2     1   
19   21  Alejandro Oms            191   16   1     1        1  2        3  2  3  1  2   
20   24  Burleigh Grimes          190   14      2     1  2     2  1  2           2  2   
21   22  Tommy Leach              184   15            4  2        1  2     1  1  2     2
22   20  Roger Bresnahan          179   13      2  1        3           3  1  1     2   
23  n/e  Rusty Staub              174   13      2        3     1  1  2        1     2  1
24   23  Orlando Cepeda           159   13         1  1        2  2  2     1  1  2  1   
25   27  Luis Tiant               149   14         2                    2  3  2  2  1  2
26   26  Lou Brock                134   10      2        1        3        1  1  1     1
27   25  Dizzy Dean               128    9         3     1        1        1     2  1   
28   29  Mickey Welch             125    9   1        2     2     1           2        1
29   30  Bobby Bonds              123   11               1  2  1  1  1  1           3  1
30   28  Norm Cash                118    9         1  1     2        1  1  1  1     1   
31   31  Larry Doyle              118    7      2     1  1  2                 1         
32   32  Ken Singleton            112   11         1     1           1  1  1  1  1     4
33   41  Bob Elliott              110   10               1     1  1  1  1  3     1     1
34   33  Vic Willis                95    8               1  1  1  1        2  1  1      
35   35  Tommy Bridges             93    7               1  1  1  1  2  1               
36   43  Elston Howard             85    9                        2  1  1     1  1  1  2
37   39  Ben Taylor                85    7         1  1              1  1     1  1     1
38   34  Reggie Smith              83    8                  1     1  2     1     1  1  1
39   46  John McGraw               81    5         2  1        1                       1
40   40  Pie Traynor               79    6      1        1        1  1           1  1   
41   44T Phil Rizzuto              78    5      1        1     2        1               
42   36T Carl Mays                 69    5               2  1           2               
43   38  Addie Joss                67    5         1        1     1           1  1      
44   48  Vern Stephens             66    6                  1     1     2     1     1   
45   44T Wally Schang              66    5      1              1     1     1        1   
46   47  Jimmy Ryan                65    6               1        1     1  1     1  1   
47   42  Chuck Klein               63    5         1  1                       1  1  1   
48   53  Bill Monroe               60    5         1                 2           1     1
49   50  Sal Bando                 56    5                        2  1  1           1   
50   36T Dave Bancroft             53    6                  1           1           3  1
51   49  Thurman Munson            52    5                     1        1  1  1  1      
52   55  Ed Williamson             49    4                  1  1     1           1      
53   54  Tony Oliva                49    3         1     1              1               
54   52  Frank Howard              47    5                              1  2     2      
55   64  Rabbit Maranville         39    4                           1     1  1  1      
56   56T Jim Kaat                  39    3            1     1                       1   
57   62  Sam Rice                  37    4                     1              1  1     1
58   51  Al Rosen                  37    3                        1  2                  
59   60T Frank Chance              35    3                     1  1              1      
60   60T Gene Tenace               33    3               1                    1  1      
61   59  Ed Cicotte                33    2            1  1                              
62   58  Bobby Veach               31    4                                 1     1  1  1
63   67T Urban Shocker             31    3                  1                 1     1   
64   85T Fred Dunlap               28    2            1                 1               
65   63  Dizzy Trout               27    2                  1        1                  
66   65T Lefty Gomez               26    2               1                 1            
67   56T Ernie Lombardi            25    2                        1  1                  
68T  65T Luis Aparicio             23    2                     1              1         
68T  67T Don Newcombe              23    2                        1        1            
68T  71  Jack Quinn                23    2            1                                1
71   70  George J. Burns           22    3                                       1  2   
72   69  Tony Mullane              22    2                     1                 1      
73   78  Bus Clarkson              20    3                                          2  1
74   73T Wilbur Cooper             16    1               1                              
75   79T Artie Wilson              15    1                  1                           
76  n/e  Al Oliver                 14    2                                          2   
77T  75T Fielder Jones             14    1                     1                        
77T  79T Sam Leever                14    1                     1                        
79   88T Jim Fregosi               13    2                                          1  1
80T  75T Dutch Leonard             13    1                        1                     
80T  75T Cecil Travis              13    1                        1                     
82T  85T Kiki Cuyler               11    1                              1               
82T  82T Hack Wilson               11    1                              1               
82T  82T Tony Lazzeri              11    1                              1               
85   79T Mickey Vernon             10    1                                 1            
86T n/e  Tommy Bond                 9    1                                    1         
86T  87  Herman Long                9    1                                    1         
86T  82T Virgil Trucks              9    1                                    1         
89T  88T George Kell                8    1                                       1      
89T  72  Bill Mazeroski             8    1                                       1      
89T  88T Bobby Murcer               8    1                                       1      
92T n/e  Wally Berger               6    1                                             1
92T n/e  Vada Pinson                6    1                                             1
92T  88T Sol White                  6    1                                             1
Dropped Out: Sparky Lyle(73T).
Ballots Cast: 54

 

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 11, 2006 at 12:59 AM | 204 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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Page 2 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3 > 
   101. Michael Bass Posted: December 13, 2006 at 09:08 PM (#2260489)
Ruffing came to mind immediately, along with of course Rixey.

I would argue that Rose, who will fly in in the next 2 years, is the ultimate low-peak long-career candidate.

Pearce, while unique of course, also has to be termed a career candidate if you want to classify him.

I also want to agree with Devin, neither Sewell nor Thompson fit as peak guys, they are prime guys. Pike doesn't neatly fit peak either, I don't think.
   102. DanG Posted: December 13, 2006 at 09:11 PM (#2260494)
If a guy was never great, who cares how long he wasn't great for?
We don't. Care, that is. This isn't the Coop, our job is not to convey the mantle of greatness. We're trying to ascertain value, which can accrue a little at a time or a lot. I guess I'm saying that Greatness = Value.

Really, we don't care if a guy was "great". We want to know did he have more value than another candidate. In so far as a high value season has more pennant potential impact, it carries a slight premium. The magnitude, the value of this impact is where we differ in our evaluations.
   103. rawagman Posted: December 13, 2006 at 09:27 PM (#2260534)
Dan - maybe we should rename this the Hall of Value.
   104. DanG Posted: December 13, 2006 at 10:27 PM (#2260560)
Dan - maybe we should rename this the Hall of Value.

From what comes merit? From being "great" or from having value?

You're saying because Player X was "great" for a few years he deserves the HoM over a player who has more value? Doesn't make sense to me.
   105. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 13, 2006 at 10:34 PM (#2260570)
Who are the big low-peak long-career inductees? Carey & Bell come to mind. Bell was in the backlog for a while. Slaughter went first ballot.

Here's position players with fewer than 90 or fewer variously adjusted WS in their 3 best years but more than 300 career WS, sorted into HOMers, eligibles, and soon-to-bes (I can't vouch well for the pitchers, I'm looking at an older system that I've mostly abandoned that tried to equate pitchers and batters WS for cross-positional purposes):

HOMs
Ashburn
CP Bell
Carey
Doerr
Gordon
Mackey
McPhee
Plank
Rixey
B-Rob
Ruffing
Wallace

ELIGIBLES
Aparicio (actually 298 WS)
Beckley
Clarkson
L Cross
W. Davis
D Dimaggio
Estalella
Hooper
Kaat
Konetchy (I've got him at 299)
Lundy
Oliver
S Rice
Rizzuto
Scales
Rg Smith
Staub
Taylor
Vernon
Marv Williams

SOONS
Bu Bell
Butler
Cruz
B Downing
Da Evans
D. Martinez
Hough
John
Molitor
Morris
Nettles
Randolph
Reuschel
Ryan
Ted Simmons
O Smith
Sutton
Tanana
Whitaker
   106. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 13, 2006 at 10:36 PM (#2260575)
with fewer than 90 or fewer variously adjusted WS

English, please, Eric?

should read:

with fewer than 90 variously adjusted WS
   107. Daryn Posted: December 13, 2006 at 10:42 PM (#2260584)
I'm surprised Molitor had no non-consecutive peak.
   108. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: December 13, 2006 at 11:02 PM (#2260611)
Intersting list Doc.

I find it weird that Gordon and Doerr are classified this way, but I guess it makes some sense. They are truly on the borderline of reaching (or not reaching) those goals.

Also, I support exactly zero of the eligibles listed there even though I don't really put much weight on top 3 WS seasons.

And finally, I find it funny how many players reach those goals that are soon to be eligible. I wonder what the effect of so many long career, low peak candidates will be. Is the low peak symptomatic of the era? If this is the case then we will elect a few more of these guys than may be expected. Is a long career symptomatic? If this is the case we may want to think about electign so many of these guys. Is it both? This is likely and could get complicated. And I do wonder if they will all just cancel each other out with only a few (Ozzie, Molitor, Whitaker?) getting in. It will be interesting.
   109. karlmagnus Posted: December 13, 2006 at 11:13 PM (#2260626)
There's a huge upsurge in the number of candidates over 200WS from the late 80s on. When you look at the actual data, a high proportion of them are by HOM standards dreck. It may be a function of there being more wins to go around in an expansion era.
   110. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 13, 2006 at 11:54 PM (#2260670)
There's a huge upsurge in the number of candidates over 200WS from the late 80s on.

I think Joe has pointed this out, but there's just a lot teams out there. There's more than 1.5 times the number than there were in 1960, beginning 1977 and rising. So there's just that many more players and that many more likely careers that can be 200+ in conjunction with better training and medicine.
   111. jimd Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:12 AM (#2260682)
It may be a function of there being more wins to go around in an expansion era.

This poses a question to your underlying ranking philosophy.

There are 50% more teams. Does one elect 50% more players?

(We appear to have already answered that affirmatively for the Negro League era.)
   112. jimd Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:20 AM (#2260690)
Here is the complete version of Dan's list.

Waiting time in years before election:

1 99 (not listed)
2 23 Burkett Crawford Plank Magee Jackson ECollins Lloyd
-- Heilmann Vance Frisch Goslin Lyons Wilson Cronin Dickey
-- Wells Boudreau Irvin Wynn BWilliams BRobinson Torre Jenkins
3 4 Keefe Flick JWilliams WFoster
4 7 Wright Glasscock Keeler MBrown Torriente Lemon Freehan
5 3 GJohnson Coveleski Carey
6 4 Kelley Groh Herman Hack
7
8 3 Radbourn Richardson JCollins
9 2 Spalding McPhee
10 2 Wallace RFoster
11 2 Sutton Suttles
12 Sheckard
13 Galvin
14 2 Ruffing Medwick
15 2 Start McGinnity
16 2 Averill Doerr
17 2 McVey Boyer
18 5 Stovey Grant Beckwith Pierce Minoso
19 WBrown
21 2 Ferrell Gordon
23 Bennett
26 Bell
27 2 Mackey Kiner
28 Thompson
30 Rixey
32 Caruthers
34 Pearce
43 Pike
44 Sisler
47 Sewell
53 Jennings
54 Mendez
60 2 Griffith Moore
71 Waddell
82 Childs

The median HOMer was elected in his first year, but the split is close 99-85.
   113. DavidFoss Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:21 AM (#2260692)
There are 50% more teams. Does one elect 50% more players?

I thought this was a big yes. The induction schedule is linked to the league size (with a bit of a time delay), no?
   114. DavidFoss Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:23 AM (#2260695)
7

Oooooohh..... there's a seventh year jinx! Cool stuff!
   115. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:41 AM (#2260716)
There are 50% more teams. Does one elect 50% more players?

The amount of players should be tied to increased competition levels, not amount of teams, IMO. If the major leagues expanded to 60 teams, unless there is a prospective HoMer somehow forgotten in the minors, the amount of great players playing today would not increase.
   116. Mark Donelson Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:47 AM (#2260723)
You're saying because Player X was "great" for a few years he deserves the HoM over a player who has more value? Doesn't make sense to me.

Well, you've hit on the nub of the disagreement there. Yes, that's pretty much what we peak voters are saying. We demand greatness.
   117. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:51 AM (#2260726)
We demand greatness.

Greatness is in the eye of the beholder. IOW, the peak definition is no more or less valid than the prime or career definition. It's all subjective.
   118. Jim Sp Posted: December 14, 2006 at 12:52 AM (#2260727)
Regarding peak vs. value:

Imagine a higher level league with only great players in it. If you're never great, you're just a long career minor leaguer.
Lots of players have value from a major league general manager's perspective, but we're trying to identify the greatest players. Those aren't the same thing.

Regarding Robin Ventura:

Absolutely, Robin Ventura is a strong candidate.
   119. sunnyday2 Posted: December 14, 2006 at 01:17 AM (#2260755)
And greatness is hardly the opposite of value. Greatness is lots of value.
   120. Mark Donelson Posted: December 14, 2006 at 01:22 AM (#2260758)
It's all subjective.

Well, all these abstract nouns ("greatness," "value," "truthiness") are pretty subjective inherently. And I agree--none of these definitions of "best" or "greatest" or whatever are more or less valid--I actually do completely understand and respect the career argument. I just disagree with it. And that's why I vote for Al Rosen.
   121. Daryn Posted: December 14, 2006 at 01:31 AM (#2260763)
Mark Donelson, you're on notice!
   122. jimd Posted: December 14, 2006 at 01:53 AM (#2260775)
Oooooohh..... there's a seventh year jinx! Cool stuff!

Not only that, but I forgot to add...

The median HOMer was elected in his first year
but, the average HOMer takes 7 years to get elected.
   123. sunnyday2 Posted: December 14, 2006 at 02:34 AM (#2260808)
Is there such a thing as an average HoMer? I thought, like all the children in Lake Woebegone, that they're all above average?
   124. Mark Donelson Posted: December 14, 2006 at 04:00 AM (#2260894)
Mark Donelson, you're on notice!

How could I resist slipping in the word of the year? :)
   125. Rob_Wood Posted: December 14, 2006 at 06:41 AM (#2261007)
Two points:

(1) I am the quintessential career voter

(2) I drafted the constitution, so the criteria referenced above should in no way
be considered a nod to the peak argument.

I really cannot understand the extreme peak (anti-career) value argument. The career
value argument boils down to saying that value comes in many different shapes and
sizes. Career value is not anti-peak, but essentially says that value is the sum of
a player's contributions over the course of his career, using whatever metric of choice.

So a high peak definitely contributes a lot. But many players who have less than
stellar peaks can still have high career value. There is absolutely no reason for a
voter to ignore career value as some seem to be doing.
   126. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 14, 2006 at 04:04 PM (#2261151)
Really? There is a strong case? If so, I'd love to hear it. I think the careerists are so convinced of the superiority of their position that no one has ever bothered to really argue the point from their side. I'm of the position that it's exponentially harder (more rare?) to produce each extra win over replacement, and that teams don't build for time-horizons longer than 5 years. I also think that longevity is significantly a matter of luck, and don't support penalizing an obviously great player (by a quantitative measurement) because his back went out on him (Keller, Rosen).


We've made the case, over . . . and over . . . and over. Go back and read the archives, it's in there, probably dozens of times. I don't have the time right now to go into it again, but I will when I get a chance.

As for the exponentially harder, that's true - the problem is the exponent is 1.05 or 1.1, not 2 or 3, or 20 as many would like to believe.

I strongly recommend the article in Baseball Prospectus (the book, not the website) a few years back on Pennants Added. Or the Bill James studies from the Politics of Glory. Both show the marginal advantage from 10+0 as opposed to 5+5 is very minimal - probably no more than 10-15%. That means 10+0 = 5.75+5.75, 5+5 = 9, not that 5+5 = 0, as anyone who doesn't have Jake Beckley in his top 50 (for argument's sake) has to believe to justify such a ranking.

And yes I think HoVG applies to guys like Al Rosen just as much as it applies to Sam Rice. Al Rosen was not a great player, he didn't play long enough. He didn't provide enough value to his teams to be considered great. His curve has a high peak, but the total area under it is fairly ordinary. He did have a couple of great seasons - but that does not make him a great player.

That's all I have time for right now, hopefully some others will pick up the torch in making the case.

I will close by saying that if the numbers showed that 10+0 was 100% more important to winning pennants than 5+5, I'd be right there with the peak group - it's not a matter of my personal preference for looking at the whole career. That preference comes from what the numbers say about the relative value of few huge seasons vs. many good ones.

The James study said Carlton-type > Sutton-type; Drysdale-type > Pappas-type (by a small margin - one that got smaller every time James made his study more realistic). However, many have twisted the conclusions to the point that Drysdale-type > Sutton-type; and that's just not supported by any evidence whatsoever.

I'm sorry if my tone comes across as testy, I've been up since 3 p.m. yesterday, and I feel like I've been beating my head against the wall on this one for about 3 years now . . . those two things combine to nudge me to the grumpy side :-)
   127. Chris Cobb Posted: December 14, 2006 at 05:06 PM (#2261244)
Since the pool of voters is not static, all arguments must be re-made from time to time.

I agree strongly with Rob Wood that the fairest way to assess merit is to look comprehensively at value. That's not to say merit = value, but merit does not = "greatness," either.

There are two related dangers of the "greatness" way of thinking about merit that I want to raise for consideration.

The first is that it can lead to an "either or" way of thinking about merit. "Great" = in; "not great" = out. This is the BBWAA voting system, and we can readily see its flaws. Our voting system, and our hall, recognize that merit, like value, is _relative_ in baseball and that fine distinctions between degrees of merit are required in order to rank players. Any time one starts applying some sort of in-out litmus test to players, that distorts the process of making fine distinctions.

The second, related danger is that "greatness" arguments can lead away from a proper awareness of the multi-faceted nature of player value. The sabermetrically aware are not prone to this kind of mistake. We know that Nolan Ryan's strikeouts, which many take as an indication of "greatness," were produced by tradeoffs with walks, wild pitches, and probably other elements of defense (holding runners, preventing steals, readiness to field the position) that need to be remembered when assessing the value and the merit of Ryan as a player. Using the comprehensive metrics also insulates us from this kind of mistake, insofar as the metrics themselves are appropriately balanced. However, seeing "greatness" in certain types of value profiles and not in others can be similarly mistaken.

I'm not suggesting that these sorts of errors are rampant in the electorate. I am suggesting that heavy reliance on an idea of "greatness" in assessing merit can lead to bad results, and insofar as the argument against considering career value is made as an argument for "greatness," I must question "greatness" and affirm the importance of career value, properly measured.
   128. Mark Donelson Posted: December 14, 2006 at 05:52 PM (#2261317)
He didn't provide enough value to his teams to be considered great.

I disagree, which I suppose is an obvious statement. You don't need to reiterate the argument for me (I realize that it does seem you do have to do so for others)--I comprehend it. I even agree with it, in a way--if what you're looking for is overall career value to their teams, short-peak guys don't measure up to long-career very-good guys. But that's not what I feel defines " the best players of their era."

As I've said before, I think we're just having a (major) disagreement at the basic of level of what "the best players of their era" means. To me, it's not about overall value to their teams over their careers. It's about who, at any given point in an era, were the best players. And again, to me, that's not Sam Rice or Reggie Smith, and barring some reinterpretation of their numbers, it never will be. On the other hand, if a player dominated his league for four or five years at a position, as I feel Rosen and Koufax did, that's enough to show me it wasn't a fluke, and (again, to me) that makes him one of the best players of his era (clearly, in Koufax's case; less clearly in Rosen's, which is why Koufax was a #1 vote for me, and Rosen is down in the teens even this far into the backlog).

I drafted the constitution, so the criteria referenced above should in no way be considered a nod to the peak argument.

I presume you're not saying here that since you, a career voter, drafted the language, that therefore peak voting is unconstitutional somehow? I don't think that's your point--I think you're just saying that peak voters shouldn't take it as an endorsement of our specific views (as we shouldn't)--but it's a little unclear.

It does seem that many of the founders of the HOM, including the Commish, are feeling of late that peak voting is somehow inherently wrong and counter to the nature of this exercise. I was under the impression that honest differences of opinion on what "merit" and "best player of era" mean were OK, but if I'm somehow violating the spirit of the HOM by voting the way I do, well...I wish someone had told me back when I started voting.

As to Chris's worries, his first isn't an issue with me; I don't have in/out litmus tests, and I use a lot of things beyond peak to adjust my standings (otherwise Brooks Robinson wouldn't be in my pHOM, for one, and Rose wouldn't be about to get my second-place vote next time). His second is a danger I'm aware of, and constantly try to be on guard against. Rest assured, at any rate, that I don't just hold every newly eligible player up to my peak stick, and throw him away if he doesn't measure up.
   129. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 14, 2006 at 06:09 PM (#2261337)
A little navel gazing.

What's funny is that I essentially agree with both sides. I think the arguments for peak v. career are both persuasive in many ways, even though I tend to fall to the peak side. But Rob and Chris are right that merit comes in many forms and that comprehensively looking at a variety of angles is the most important thing. Which hearkens to James' point that it's the weight of the evidence, always the weight of the evidence.

As noted, I tend toward the peak argument. For a long time I thought I was a total peak person. I don't think that's true based on my ballots. I think I'm peak-centric with pitchers but not with position players. I didn't support Moore, or Kiner. I don't support Keller, McGraw, or Chance. I weakly supported Jennings, and I didn't support Pike. I weakly support Browning, but I did support Childs (who may be more a prime guy). On the other hand, I support Fox, Leach, Trouppe, Roush, Jones, Duffy, Tralee, some of whom are prime gusy (with credits in Jones' case) and some of whom are career guys. I'll support Molitor, Evans, Whitaker. I may support Perez, Smith, and Nettles (don't know yet). All told it looks like I'm more like a prime voter who prefers a guy to have some dominant years. But then I'm not in on the Wynn/Bonds/rSmith thing either, so maybe not. What I'm trying to get at, I guess, is that over time while my public stance has seemed pretty peak-centric, the reality is that my voting patterns are only slightly peak-centric. That's kind of odd, I guess.

But with pitchers, I think it's safe to say I'm fairly peak-centric but with a lot of prime leanings. I supported Mendez for a long time, I support Walters now. I also support Wilby Cooper and have in the past supported Vic Willis; I was a big pusher for Billy Pearce. I supported Koufax weakly to moderately (I don't remember if I had all the way at the bottom or around 6-10). Dean is closer to my ballot than you'd think, yet I'm not fond of him as a candidate. On the other hand, I do not support Joss nor did I support Waddell (the two of whom are among the most perplexing candidates to me), and I'm not about to get in on someone like Joe Wood or Mel Parnell. By the same token I very very weakly supported Rixey, Lyons, and Ruffing. I will support Ryan, probably with mid- to low-mid placement (depending on the state of the ballot), but I think it's unlikely given my precedent that I'll support Sutton or John very much---though I'm not going to shut the door on them by any means. My pitching decisions appear to be more in line with my public stance toward the peak argument, but again, now that I've written this up, it looks as though I drift strongly to prime.

So what's this all mean? Well, it's kind of a toss up. If peak is 10, prime is 5, career is 1, then my voting pattern probably suggests that I'm like a 6, 7 max. Maybe 6 on position players, 7 on pitchers? But my public stance has been more like an 8. Hmmmmm. I'm moving toward a more Keltner-oriented system, which means I am canvassing a larger collection of ways to look at candidates. And my system does reflect a peak orientation: The question I weight most highly is, Was he ever the best player in his league? In a 90-point scale, I give it 20 potential points, with 10 points accrued in the first such instance, and one point for each instance thereafter. Everything else is a 10-point scale running 1-10. Even so, this 8-question system sees the career guys in a more favorable light than my old system and it sees Beckley, for instance, as about 10-15 slots higher than the old way. So maybe I truly am moderating? And while that could be a Magnus style wimp-out (just kidding, Karl!!!), it could be a nod to the fact that I've underrated career and that discussion has helped me understand it better. I don't know.

What I do know is that I've probably got to moderate my public stance on peak a little bit to make sure it jibes with how I vote.

OK, end of metadiscussion....
   130. Daryn Posted: December 14, 2006 at 06:34 PM (#2261364)
I'm the opposite of Doc -- I started 100% career and have moved to considering peak as part of the analysis.

I'm not sure how I could prove it, but anecdotally from listening to and reading 100s of writers explain their ballots over the years, it is my distinct impression that ~90% of the BBWAA voters are career voters. In fact, until I started this project it didn't occur to me that there was another way to evaluate a career other than looking at the career line (looking at both counting and rate stats, which allows for a great rate/poor counting career to be honoured).

I have immensely enjoyed learning about others' perspectives over this project, but I still have not been brought around to the theory that if Albert Pujols gets one more at bat in each of 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 he should be elected to the HoF (or HoM). I'm close though -- that siren song of a career OPS+ of 171 is calling me.
   131. DanG Posted: December 14, 2006 at 06:52 PM (#2261389)
“You're saying because Player X was "great" for a few years he deserves the HoM over a player who has more value? Doesn't make sense to me.”

After I wrote that I realized, OMG, that’s exactly what they’re saying. This was soon confirmed by Mark in #117 and Jim in #119.

Their view is probably not representative of most peak-inclined voters. Indeed, there is a spectrum of voters here, from extreme peak-oriented to extreme career-oriented. The former has no concern for career value, while the latter doesn’t care what the peak was. Most of us are somewhere in between. I believe the average HoM voter is more career oriented, with some consideration of peak. This is offset by there being more voters closer to extreme peak than the number close to extreme career.

Jim Sp:

Imagine a higher level league with only great players in it. If you're never great, you're just a long career minor leaguer.

Mark S. (jsch) in 1992 Discussion:

Also, the way I measure peak is by value accumulated over a long baseline (say 25 WS or 8 WARP).

What Jim seems to be saying is he measures value in a similar way to how Mark measures peak. Jim is saying only value over (say) 27 WS or 9 WARP counts for anything; if it’s less it’s minor league and has no merit. That method seems to ignore “the weight of the evidence”, telling us only who would’ve played in a theoretical “higher level league” and not who was accruing value in reality.

Back when win shares first appeared I fiddled with a system of accrued value. For position players, 12 in a year was determined to be average MLB player; above 18 ws a player accrued “star” points; above 24 ws a player accrued “superstar” points; above 30 ws a player accrued MVP points. Each season was scaled to a 162-game schedule. War credit and strike-season credit were regressed to surrounding seasons.

I figured a few dozen guys before I lost interest. Rusty Staub, for example. He has 358 career win shares. Strike credit for 1972 and 1981 ups this to 361. He had 140 ws above average, 75 star points, 28 superstar points and 2 MVP points. Alan Trammell is a bit less: 328 career aws, 131 above ave, 66 star, 25 superstar and 5 MVP. Dave Parker a little better: 331 career aws, 132 above ave, 73 star, 36 superstar, 11 MVP. Jennings has 256 aws, 128 above ave, 93 star, 63 superstar and 33 MVP. Grich has 338 aws, 160 above ave, 84 star, 33 superstar and 3 MVP.

For post-1920 pitchers, the levels are reduced to 10 ws as average, above 15 is star, above 20 is superstar, above 25 is MVP. Bert Blyleven has 345 career aws, 153 above ave, 80 star, 19 superstar, 4 MVP.

I guess the point is that not just one of those five numbers is “it”. To get the whole story you need to look at all five. And you need to look at WARP, too.
   132. sunnyday2 Posted: December 14, 2006 at 07:29 PM (#2261448)
I don't have time to do it right now, but if you weighted those above average, star, superstar and MVP points, say, 1-2-3-4, wonder where you would end up. Or add in the career total and 1-2-3-4-5. Something like that.

A totally extreme peak-only system would only look at MVP points, right? Cy Seymour!
   133. Daryn Posted: December 14, 2006 at 07:30 PM (#2261449)
Also, the way I measure peak is by value accumulated over a long baseline (say 25 WS or 8 WARP).

It is not clear from this sentence whether peak is the only measure mark s uses, but if it were, a player who had 15 consecutive 25 WS seasons and then retired would not make his HoM. I don't understand that. Similarly, many peak voters have said that a player with 18 consecutive 20 WS seasons wouldn't make their ballot. I don't understand that either.
   134. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: December 14, 2006 at 08:10 PM (#2261481)
Daryn,

That is not all that I do. I do factor in prime, used as WS over 15 and WARP over 4.5 (I have had trouble finding a WARP baseline that I liked) that means slightly less than my peak. Again, probably another reason why I am at the top of the consensus. I have career numbers and best 3/5/7 years. The latter is more of a check ot make sure that I am not overrating those that have one 42 WS seasons and notmuch else (Cy Seymour, Fred Dunlap). The former is more of a tiebreaker, if guys have equal or really close primes and peaks, then the guy with the better career numbers will win out (as it should be really). However, career numbers do not come first, they are last and in some cases not even looked at (i.e. Keller v. Beckley never really gest to the career agument for me becasue Keller's peak and prime were so much more valuable). I also factor in teh biases I see in these metrics and use some OPS+, DERA, Tr. IP, Eqa (which I thin is far superior to OPS+, why do OPS+ guys like that more than Eqa?), etc.

As for the two hypothetical players that you mentioned, the former (15 seasons of 25 WS) would be a HOMer, that is a hell of a prime, enough to overcome a small peak. The latter would at best be one of the last guys I would elect to the HOM so he wouldn't be on my ballot. 18 years of 20 ws is only a 90 prime score for me, which is not that impressive really. This is the problem with someone like Jake Beckley, it isn't even so much the peak (which is really really small) but the prime that gets me. Most of his years are so close to my baseline that he just doesn't rack up enough prime points really. I have Konetchy's prime as better than Beckley's.

And if anyone here thinks I should move my baselines I am open to it, they really ahve only come about by trial and error, nothign special. Also, i realize that the WS part of my system may overrate players who play full seasons over those who play better but in fewer games. I am okay with this (see my discussion with Chris in last year ballot thread) and I think that using WARP (which by definition should not have this problem) helps to balance things out.
   135. Chris Cobb Posted: December 14, 2006 at 08:22 PM (#2261490)
I think that using WARP (which by definition should not have this problem) helps to balance things out

Well, WARP does not have this problem with respect to batting value, where (I think) it sets replacement level at about the right point. With respect to fielding value, however, its replacement level looks (to me) to be quite a bit too low, with the same tendencies to overrate players for showing up that batting win shares has. Pete Rose, for example, is valued in about the same way by WARP as he is by win shares (that is to say, I believe, overrated). WARP has his batting value much more in line with (what I see as) reality, but it gives him so much fielding value that his relative position in comparison to his peers is about the same.
   136. Subby Posted: December 14, 2006 at 08:23 PM (#2261493)
Hey Michael Bass! I have been trying to contact you about the Richard Berglund replica jersey I lent to you. Please contact me because I also have a question about run expectations and was hoping you still had that chart.

Brian Prins says hi...

Stubby
   137. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 14, 2006 at 09:48 PM (#2261574)
Mark - it's definitely not unconstitutional to have a peak flavor in one's voting - I've never said that, I hope that isn't what the impression has been. I will say the intent, from the beginning was to honor the players who contributed the most to winning pennants over their careers.

The one funny thing is that you mention Koufax - my personal uber-system, which I think balances peak and career well actually has him as the #25 starting pitcher so far, and clearly in any personal Hall of Merit. I've got Ed Walsh #26, Amos Rusie #23, heck I've got Don Drysdale at #17, Stan Coveleski #32, Wes Ferrell #33 and Urban Shocker #34. Heck I vote Shocker right next to Jack Quinn every year it seems like now.

So I clearly understand that peak is important, I'm not way off on some ledge out far to the extreme. It seems like anyone that doesn't overweigh peak (in terms of how important it should be weighed statistically based on every study I've seen) is considered a career voter - I kind of thought it was obvious that the whole career should be considered from the get go. Why should only a few seasons count?

I just can't understand how people don't take career value into account at all when trying to figure out who the best players were. I've always felt there was more than one way to skin a cat in terms of the Hall of Fame with long career/high peak being the obvious guys; then you could either have a few great seasons; or many very good ones. I don't think one way should be any more meritorious than the other. I have Hal Newhouser, Eppa Rixey, Amos Rusie, Jack Quinn, Sandy Koufax, Ed Walsh, Jim Bunning, Jim Palmer and Red Faber ranked consecutively, I think that's a reasonable balance - I don't understand how anyone can justify going to one extreme (having Koufax or Rusie 50th among pitchers) or the other (having Rixey or Faber that low - I realize Quinn is a special case because of his PCL years in the late teens).
   138. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 14, 2006 at 10:41 PM (#2261644)
I posted the Pennants Added formula on the 1992 ballot discussion thread (post 247) if anyone is interested.
   139. Mark Donelson Posted: December 14, 2006 at 11:11 PM (#2261684)
Why should only a few seasons count?

Well, they shouldn't, you're right. It's really just a matter of weight, and as Eric notes above, a lot of us may be in fact overstating our extremity a bit. I mean, I think I'm about as extreme a peak voter as there is in this bunch, but in a way that's relative. If I were only taking peak into account, and not taking career into account at all, I probably would have ended up with truly out-there stances, like not voting for Warren Spahn. (He was #1 on my ballot that "year.")

So perhaps I should just tone down my own rhetoric, and rather than describing myself as an "extreme peak voter" (which I am relative to the electorate, but perhaps not in the entire possible scheme of thngs), just call myself a peak voter. Similarly, I should stop saying I don't take career into account at all, since I clearly do--just not nearly as much as most of the rest of you.
   140. Jim Sp Posted: December 15, 2006 at 12:17 AM (#2261766)
Jim is saying only value over (say) 27 WS or 9 WARP counts for anything; if it’s less it’s minor league and has no merit.

Not really. Perhaps there is a peak voter out there who is this extreme, but I doubt it.

I'm not really a peak voter, I'm more like a career voter who mixes in some peak like everyone else. I stated a peak case, but to be clear I do not wholeheartedly buy into it.

I do think the filter you run for "players worth offering a contract to" and "players worth putting in the HoM" should be different. But not that different. See my ballot comments for a summary of my current system. The peak part of the system omits seasons under 5 warp but is balanced by a career oriented system with an elevated replacement level. As my consensus score is now high I would offer that this is not a radically peak oriented system, in fact it may be approximately as peak oriented as Pennants Added for all I know.

However the peak-oriented argument will never be addressed by Pennants Added, which career voters offer as a "rational" defense of peak weighting. An extreme peak-oriented voter (I am not one) is not interested in career value justifications for valuing a peak. In one form or another, they would say that a great player must have great seasons (or I suppose great rate stats).

We must all be bored at work this week and need something to get riled up about. Surprisingly Pete Rose on the ballot isn't doing it for me. In a way I prefer for him to go in right away so that we don't have to talk about him any more.
   141. Chris Cobb Posted: December 15, 2006 at 12:51 AM (#2261810)
We must all be bored at work this week and need something to get riled up about. Surprisingly Pete Rose on the ballot isn't doing it for me. In a way I prefer for him to go in right away so that we don't have to talk about him any more.

Boredom could be a factor, though not for me, as I am swamped with final papers and exams! I attribute the outburst of conversation to a sense that we haven't actually talked about these high level issues of merit and value for a while, so we were ready to be interested and/or cranky about them again :- ).

As to Rose: I think that, although we didn't plan to defuse getting riled up about him, the way the discussion unfolded helped us to avoid serious pie fights. We had it out over the gambling issues at the outset of the 1992 ballot discussion thread, which attracted little attention from outside the group, and is now buried about 200 posts deep on that thread (a hundred messages or so on methodology probably discourages the casual reader from digging back to the beginning of the thread). By the time the Pete Rose thread was posted, which attracted more outside attention (as those thread usually do), we were all pretty much settled on that issue, so we didn't bring it up, where it might have provoked more argument. So the Pete Rose case has been surprisingly quiet so far. Granted, we have 10 days yet before the 1992 election finishes, so maybe it will flare up, but it doesn't look likely at this point, which is fine by me.
   142. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 15, 2006 at 01:29 AM (#2261833)
The other thing in regard to Rose is that we all know that he will either be inducted in '92 or '93. That fact let's out most of the air in any diatribe for or against a protest vote for The Hustler.
   143. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 15, 2006 at 04:07 AM (#2261977)
We had it out over the gambling issues at the outset of the 1992 ballot discussion thread, which attracted little attention from outside the group, and is now buried about 200 posts deep on that thread.... By the time the Pete Rose thread was posted, which attracted more outside attention (as those thread usually do), we were all pretty much settled on that issue, so we didn't bring it up, where it might have provoked more argument. So the Pete Rose case has been surprisingly quiet so far.

It's quite possible that this is a very happy result, in as much as it may be a way for us to process future controversial candidates without too much outside interference. I'm thinking of Mark McGwire specifically, and mostly anyone from his era generally, as well as the continually raging steroids pie fights at BTF (nice term, Chris, I hadn't read it before).
   144. yest Posted: December 15, 2006 at 09:43 AM (#2262133)
Dobie Moore 387
-----------------
Nellie Fox 385


AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

considering I'm the lowest person on the consensuns lists I would have expeted these players to be off my ballots

years on the ballot
82 Childs
71 Waddell PHOM
60 Griffith PHOM
60 Moore
54 Mendez
53 Jennings made my ballot in the past
47 Sewell PHOM
44 Sisler PHOM
43 Pike PHOM
34 Pearce
32 Caruthers made my ballot in the past
30 Rixey
28 Thompson PHOM
27 Mackey PHOM
27 Kiner PHOM
There may be <u>HOPE</u> for <u>Traynor</u>, Fox, Browning, and Beckley yett


A list of eligible HoFers
HoMers in bold
all HoFers with significant playing careers are included
1936
Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson, Walter Johnson
1937
Nap Lajoie, Tris Speaker, Cy Young , Connie Mack, John McGraw, George Wright
1938
Pete Alexander
1939
George Sisler , Eddie Collins , Willie Keeler , Lou Gehrig, Cap Anson , Charlie Comiskey , Candy Cummings , Buck Ewing , Charles Radbourn , Al Spalding
1942
Rogers Hornsby
1945
Roger Bresnahan , Dan Brouthers , Fred Clarke , Jimmy Collins , Ed Delahanty , Hugh Duffy , Hughie Jennings , King Kelly , Jim O’Rourke , Wilbert Robinson
1946
Jesse Burkett , Frank Chance , Jack Chesbro , Johnny Evers , , Clark Griffith, , Tommy McCarthy , Joe McGinnity , Eddie Plank , Joe Tinker , Rube Waddell , Ed Walsh
1947
Carl Hubbell , Frankie Frisch , Mickey Cochrane , Lefty Grove
1948
Herb Pennock , Pie Traynor
1949
Charlie Gehringer , Mordecai Brown , Kid Nichols
1951
Mel Ott , Jimmie Foxx
1952
Harry Heilmann , Paul Waner
1953
Al Simmons , Dizzy Dean , Chief Bender , Bobby Wallace , Harry Wright
1954
Rabbit Maranville , Bill Dickey , Bill Terry
1955
Joe DiMaggio , Ted Lyons , Dazzy Vance , Gabby Hartnett , Frank Baker , Ray Schalk
1956
Hank Greenberg , Joe Cronin
1957
Sam Crawford
1959
Zack Wheat
1961
Max Carey , Billy Hamilton
1962
Bob Feller , Jackie Robinson , Bill McKechnie , Edd Roush
1963
John Clarkson , Elmer Flick , Sam Rice , Eppa Rixey
1964
Luke Appling , Red Faber , Burleigh Grimes , Miller Huggins , Tim Keefe , Heinie Manush , Monte Ward
1965
Pud Galvin
1966
Ted Williams , Casey Stengel
1967
Red Ruffing , Lloyd Waner
1968
Joe Medwick , Kiki Cuyler , Goose Goslin
1969
Stan Musial, Roy Campanella , Stan Coveleski , , Waite Hoyt,
1970
Lou Boudreau , Earle Combs , Jesse Haines,
1971
Dave Bancroft , Jake Beckley , Chick Hafey , Harry Hooper , Joe Kelley , Rube Marquard , Satchel Paige
1972
Sandy Koufax , Yogi Berra ,Early Wynn, Lefty Gomez , Ross Youngs , Josh Gibson , Buck Leonard
1973
Warren Spahn , George Kelly , Mickey Welch , Monte Irvin , Roberto Clemente
1974
Mickey Mantle , Whitey Ford , Jim Bottomley , Sam Thompson , Cool Papa Bell
1975
Ralph Kiner , Earl Averill , Bucky Harris , Billy Herman , Judy Johnson
1976
Robin Roberts, Bob Lemon , Roger Connor , Freddy Lindstrom , Oscar Charleston
1977
Ernie Banks ,Amos Rusie , Joe Sewell , Al Lopez , Martin Dihigo , Pop Lloyd
1978
Eddie Mathews, Addie Joss
1979
Willie Mays , Hack Wilson
1980
Al Kaline, Duke Snider, Chuck Klein
1981
Bob Gibson, Johnny Mize , Rube Foster
1982
Hank Aaron, Frank Robinson, Travis Jackson
1983
Brooks Robinson, Juan Marichal, George Kell
1984
Luis Aparicio, Harmon Killebrew, Don Drysdale, Rick Ferrell , Pee Wee Reese
1985
Hoyt Wilhelm, Lou Brock, Enos Slaughter , Arky Vaughan
1986
Willie McCovey, Bobby Doerr, Ernie Lombardi
1987
Billy Williams, Catfish Hunter, Ray Dandridge
1988
Willie Stargell
1989
Johnny Bench, Carl Yastrzemski, Red Schoendienst
1990
Jim Palmer , Joe Morgan
1991
Rod Carew, Gaylord Perry, Fergie Jenkins , Tony Lazzeri
1992
Rollie Fingers, Hal Newhouser
1994
Leo Durocher , Phil Rizzuto
1995
Leon Day , Vic Willis , Richie Ashburn
1996
Jim Bunning, Bill Foster , Ned Hanlon
1997
Nellie Fox, Willie Wells
1998
George Davis , Larry Doby , Joe Rogan
1999
Orlando Cepeda, Joe Williams
2000
Bid McPhee , Turkey Stearnes
2001
Bill Mazeroski , Hilton Smith
2006
Ray Brown, Willard Brown, Andy Cooper, Biz Mackey, Mule Suttles, Cristobal Torriente, Jud Wilson, Frank Grant, Pete Hill, Jose Mendez Louis Santop, Ben Taylor, Sol White
   145. rawagman Posted: December 15, 2006 at 10:39 AM (#2262138)
I think yest's list gives us a good reason to really reconsider the candidacies of Roger Bresnahan and Hugh Duffy. These men were in the first group elected by the hall to not be among the inner, inner early circle, or to be baseball pioneers - McGraw, Mack, Robertson, Cummings, Spalding and Comiskey were elected at least 95% on what they accomplished extrenous to the game itself.
Bresnahan, maybe a bit of a pioneer too - but Duffy was a player.
That was the VC before Frisch/Terry era cronyism.
What are we missing here?
   146. Howie Menckel Posted: December 15, 2006 at 03:18 PM (#2262193)
Bresnahan supposedly invented tools of ignorance, I think.
Duffy had the huge stats for one season, and people overrated that.
   147. DanG Posted: December 15, 2006 at 03:25 PM (#2262201)
Duffy had the huge stats for one season, and people overrated that.

Duffy has always been honored as holding THE "most important" record in baseball: highest single season batting average. I recall a picture of Duffy, a long-time Red Sox coach, and Ted Williams sitting in the dugout with Duffy pointing at ".438" written in chalk on the dugout wall. As if to say, "Yeah, .406 ain't bad, but THIS is really your target, MY record."
   148. Chris Fluit Posted: December 15, 2006 at 06:50 PM (#2262349)
Howie Menckel wrote: Duffy had the huge stats for one season, and people overrated that.
DanG wrote: Duffy has always been honored as holding THE "most important" record in baseball: highest single season batting average. I recall a picture of Duffy, a long-time Red Sox coach, and Ted Williams sitting in the dugout with Duffy pointing at ".438" written in chalk on the dugout wall. As if to say, "Yeah, .406 ain't bad, but THIS is really your target, MY record."

I think you guys are off-base. Yes, Duffy had huge stats in 1894 when he won the Triple Crown and set the single-season record for batting average. But I think that rawagman's point still holds. Duffy was inducted in 1945, decades before the Veterans Committee started electing everyone with a Triple Crown or significant single season record like Chuck Klein and Hack Wilson. I think Duffy is being unfairly lumped in with that kind of player. There is more to Duffy's case than one season. Even so, at some point, he should get credit for 1894 too. I get the feeling that some voters are so concerned about Duffy's being potentially overrated due to his Triple Crown year that they are now making the opposite mistake of underrating him.

As for Bresnahan, my guess is that he was inducted as the best catcher of his generation. I don't think anyone here would dispute that claim. But we also have another 60 years of perspective and not everyone here thinks that "being the best catcher of his generation" is enough to warrant induction on its own. I think Bresnahan has a strong case, but at this point, it's hard to say that it's a top-fifteen ballot-worthy case.
   149. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 15, 2006 at 07:01 PM (#2262366)
Chris,

I agree with DanG and Howie and disagree with you. ; )

Duffy was inducted around the same time as George Sisler, and their HOM arguments are very similar.

In the late 1940s, hitting .400 was a bigger friggin' deal than it is even now. And we know how excited people get about .400 chases: Gwynn, Carew, Brett, Dykstra, Olerud, and others have all entered June (or thereabouts) with .400-threatening averages and gotten big press for it. Remember how someone was always talking about Boggs being the odds-on fave to hit .400?

So roll it back 35-40 years, and imagine how impressed everyone was with .438. Now compare to Sisler. In 1939, he was inducted with Eddie Collins, Lou Gehrig, and Cap Anson, as well as Radbourne, Ewing, and Keeler. He's pretty clearly the worst of the class BY FAR, and it's easy to look back and say, WTF? Particularly when Brouthers, Connor, Delahanty, O'Rourke, and Nichols (who were in the Vets purview) still weren't in. But the BBWAA saw Sisler as comparable to the best ever thanks to those .400 years.

Duffy's the same kind of guy, only I like him better than Sisler. He's got the big .400 number and a high career average to support it. I really think that's the story.
   150. Chris Fluit Posted: December 15, 2006 at 07:09 PM (#2262380)
Thanks, Eric. I appreciate the longer explanation and the context. I'll still be voting for Duffy, though. :)
   151. Chris Cobb Posted: December 15, 2006 at 07:13 PM (#2262387)
Can't argue for Bresnahan and Duffy's 1945 HoF election as being meaningful to their case without also arguing for Tinker, Evers, and Chance on the basis of their 1946 HoF election, unless you can show that the Hall's procedures and standards went _suddenly_ downhill . . . I think they were electing old-time players that they had actually heard of for one reason or another at that time.
   152. Chris Cobb Posted: December 15, 2006 at 07:14 PM (#2262391)
Not to mention Hall of Famers Happy Jack Chesbro and Tommy McCarthy, whom the HoF had the wisdom to select in 1946 as well . . .
   153. Juan V Posted: December 15, 2006 at 07:46 PM (#2262424)
I see Duffy as an example of the difference in philosophies between the Coop and us. The things that got him elected, while still being remarkable enough, just don´t hold as much weight with us.

And, apart from '94, he ain´t got nuthin´ on Ryan :-)
   154. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 15, 2006 at 10:24 PM (#2262625)
The things that got him elected, while still being remarkable enough, just don´t hold as much weight with us.

Unfortunately...
   155. rawagman Posted: December 15, 2006 at 11:37 PM (#2262703)
One of Duffy's supporters equates his support with Duffy as being representative of support for the all-around player. If I'm building a team, the first guy I want is the guy who is excellent in every facet of the game. A guy who will be stellar with the bat. Who can handle any position in the outfield with aplomb. A player who can stay healthy. A guy who understands the game. He can outplay you and outthink you. A guy who made his teammates better, knowing they could play with more abandon because they knew he would be there. You want to discuss pennants added. Well - here is a guy with pennants won. Plenty of them. You want to build a pennant? This is a pennant winner. Not a true career candidate. Not a sustained peak. Just a super spike on a marvelous prime. Look at his other seasons - not just 1894. He mashed. Check my defensive analysis of him on the Duffy/GVH/Jimmy Ryan thread. Look at his team's records. Here is not a what-might-have-been. This is what was.
   156. Jim Sp Posted: December 16, 2006 at 01:27 AM (#2262822)
I see a few guys from the era who I like a little bit more than Duffy...Dunlap, McGraw, Tiernan, Browning, Griffin, Williamson. It seems to me each has a case but none are really compelling. None are in my top fifty right now.
   157. DavidFoss Posted: December 16, 2006 at 02:25 AM (#2262886)
Duffy gets dinged quite a bit by park factors at the South End Grounds. That and league contexts were just sky high as well. Coop doesn't look at either of those things.

He only spent four years in CF.
   158. Howie Menckel Posted: December 16, 2006 at 02:43 AM (#2262893)
Duffy mashed in 1894 - and to some extent in a Mickey Mouse 1891 AA.
Other than that, no mashing.

Heck, Roger Maris mashed TWICE (and two MVPs to boot), and to some extent a 3rd. And he had a heckuva arm in the OF, too.
Duffy lasted longer, sure, but I don't see a huge edge for Duffy in that comparison.

I do accept Duffy as an excellent defensive player, more credit than just his four "CF" seasons. But how muc was that really worth? It's a tiebreaker for sure, but Ralph Kiner was pounding the crap out of opposing pitchers for 7 years while missing the occasional fly ball. I can live with that. Duffy's sprinting all over the OF, but he's mostly not scaring people with his bat.
   159. Howie Menckel Posted: December 16, 2006 at 02:46 AM (#2262894)
I guess I should clarify that some of that is hyperbole (hopefully that was obvious), but I really do find Kiner to have been more valuable.
   160. Paul Wendt Posted: December 16, 2006 at 02:58 AM (#2262907)
A little navel gazing.

only a little?
it has always been an omphalokneptical group

Chris F
Can't argue for Bresnahan and Duffy's 1945 HoF election as being meaningful to their case without also arguing for Tinker, Evers, and Chance on the basis of their 1946 HoF election,

That's right.
And
1945 Hugh Duffy
1945 Tommy McCarthy
1945 (Jimmy Collins - barely belongs here or doesn't)
1949 Kid Nichols
1961 Billy Hamilton
And this team enjoyed the services of many more good players
   161. Paul Wendt Posted: December 16, 2006 at 02:58 AM (#2262908)
1949! Kid Nichols
1961! Billy Hamilton
   162. Brent Posted: December 16, 2006 at 06:05 PM (#2263180)
Can we learn anything from 1940s veterans committee elections?

The voters then, as always, were older men, mostly in their 60s and 70s. They were probably not old enough to remember the 1870s and 80s (with the exception of Connie Mack, who was serving on the committee), so they voted for the players of their youth in the 90s and aughts. Baseball encyclopedias were not yet available, so presumably any use of statistics was entirely ad hoc. It's clear that some of their biases included: a) favoring players from winning teams (the 1890s Beaneaters and Orioles, the 1900s Cubs and Giants); b) favoring players who had remained in the game after their playing careers as managers or coaches; c) thinking of players in groups (Tinkers, Evers, and Chance; Duffy and McCarthy); d) paying a lot of attention to single-season records -- Duffy's batting record, Chesbro's "modern" win record; e) a boost to recently deceased players (Bresnahan). All of these factors need to be considered in evaluating the HoF elections of players like Duffy and Bresnahan.

On the other hand, the voters had actually seen these guys play, so I think their observation deserves some consideration. I like to read the HoF plaques, since I assume that they were written about the time of the election and may reflect some of the committee's considerations in electing the player. Duffy's plaque is very brief: "Brilliant as a defensive outfielder for the Boston Nationals, he compiled a batting average in 1894 which was not to be challanged in his lifetime - 438." Yes, it confirms that Duffy's single-season batting record was given too much attention, but I also see it as evidence that Duffy's reputation as a brilliant outfielder is not simply an artifact of the win shares system.

Bresnahan's plaque reads: "Battery mate of Christy Mathewson with the New York Giants, he was one of the game's most natural players and might have starred at any position. The 'Duke of Tralee' was one of the few major league catchers fast enough to be used as a leadoff man." In this case I learn that Bresnahan's speed and versatility were considered important assets.

So I don't give much weight to HoF elections, but I do try to look objectively at all sources of information, including comments by knowledgeable observers.
   163. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 16, 2006 at 06:07 PM (#2263183)
I tried to look it up but "omphalokneptical" does not get a hit at dictionary.com. Someone please help.

:-)
   164. sunnyday2 Posted: December 16, 2006 at 06:21 PM (#2263191)
I think its actually oompa-loompa-lokneptical.
   165. DavidFoss Posted: December 16, 2006 at 08:00 PM (#2263251)
I couldn't find it either... but just found it:

Omphaloskepsis

Funny words... :-)
   166. Rick A. Posted: December 17, 2006 at 01:59 AM (#2263463)
Howie,

I have some differences in the points totals

Monroe 6624
Fox 5560
Elliott 3237

and here are Dean and Cepeda
Dean 3224
Cepeda 1623
   167. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 17, 2006 at 02:38 PM (#2263705)
So I don't give much weight to HoF elections, but I do try to look objectively at all sources of information, including comments by knowledgeable observers.

As we all should do, Brent.
   168. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 17, 2006 at 05:51 PM (#2263766)
I strongly recommend the article in Baseball Prospectus (the book, not the website) a few years back on Pennants Added. Or the Bill James studies from the Politics of Glory. Both show the marginal advantage from 10+0 as opposed to 5+5 is very minimal - probably no more than 10-15%. That means 10+0 = 5.75+5.75, 5+5 = 9, not that 5+5 = 0, as anyone who doesn't have Jake Beckley in his top 50 (for argument's sake) has to believe to justify such a ranking.

Sorry for the delayed response to a dead thread, but I was away at a conference.

I strongly disagree with the various permutations of the "Pennants Added" metric. I think that they grossly underestimate the value of superior performance. I generally weigh performance more in accordance with salary data, incorporating only the salaries of players who are in free agency years. The salary data suggests that the value of each win over replacement increases exponentially, and that's how I proceed as well.
   169. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 17, 2006 at 05:59 PM (#2263768)
What? Please explain that one 'zop - I don't what salaries have to do with performance at all regarding a project like this - especially since the current salary structure hasn't been in place very long considering all of baseball history.

And I'm not aware of any salary data that shows an exponential increase in the value of wins. Both of the studies presented at the SABR convention this past year showed that marginal wins increase revenue at a higher rate between 85 and 97 wins (or so), but it was nothing like anything that could be described as exponential, and it was entirely team dependent (marginal wins are worth more in NY than in Atl, etc.)

I don't see how this could be remotely relevant to the Hall of Merit, but even if it were, you are severely distorting the results. Please give a source for your idea that marginal wins have some kind of exponential effect on a team's chances of winning a pennant or generating more revenue.

Also please let us know where we can find the idea that very good seasons have no impact on a team's winning the pennant, which seems to be your take on this - considering your placement of Kaline.
   170. sunnyday2 Posted: December 17, 2006 at 06:16 PM (#2263782)
I agree that salary data is not the way to go. I mean, Carlos Lee is a HoMer?

But the problem with PAs is that they are theoretical, and the real world has a way of intruding. I mean, as I understand it, the PA concept is to put a player on many, many (all?) ML teams, and see if with the addition of this one player the team wins the pennant or not. The best players of all-time get 1-2 PAs, borderliners get maybe .5-.7 in a career. I infer from this that the seasonal range tends generally to be .05-.1 pennants or so.

Meanwhile in the real world it's all 1s and 0s. And so when we see a player like Kirby Puckett we throw the .05s out the window, because clearly there is no way the Twins win 2 pennants without him, and none of his teammates had even remotely the impact that he had. So mentally and subjectively he gets a couple of 1s.

The beauty of the theoretical construct is that every players gets the same opportunity, whereas in the real world only Kirby Puckett was in that place at that time. But still, we can't bring ourselves to ignore what really happened, and clearly it colors our evaluation of a guy like Kirby.

Yes, PA has it's place. But when it collides with the real world, well, PA loses.
   171. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 17, 2006 at 06:24 PM (#2263786)
I completely disagree Marc.

Why should Kirby Puckett get more credit than Ralph Kiner because his teammates weren't terrible.

And guys like Frank Viola, Kent Hrbek, Gary Gaetti, etc. had plenty of impact on those Twins teams, it wasn't just the Kirby show. Hell, Kirby hit .125 through the first 4 games of the 1991 WS - did his teammates have anything to do with the first 2 wins that made his Game 6 heroics possible?

All Pennants Added shows is a realistic frame of reference for how much extra weight should be given to 'big years' as opposed to 'value accumulation'.

And so far, the only things I here against it are that all players don't have the same teammates and we should give credit to the guys with better ones, and that salary data shows that marginal wins are exponentially more valuable (even though the data doesn't show that).
   172. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 17, 2006 at 06:28 PM (#2263789)
Meanwhile in the real world it's all 1s and 0s. And so when we see a player like Kirby Puckett we throw the .05s out the window, because clearly there is no way the Twins win 2 pennants without him, and none of his teammates had even remotely the impact that he had. So mentally and subjectively he gets a couple of 1s.


I mean, we all know that a star doesn't typically impact a team's W-L record more than 5-7 games and a superstar is lucky to make a team 10 wins better - I mean with Al Pujols having an MVP caliber season, the Cards won 83 games this year.

So why would it shock anyone that over the course a career a superstar isn't going to typically flip more than a pennant or so all by himself? Or that one player isn't going to have more than a 5 or 10% chance of pushing a team from not winning a pennant to winning one?

This whole thing (reality is different than theoritcal) sounds like a rationalization for the 'idea' that 'great' seasons are what wins championships and that very good seasons are career filler, when there isn't any real evidence to support this kind of weighting.
   173. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 17, 2006 at 06:48 PM (#2263794)
Why should Kirby Puckett get more credit than Ralph Kiner because his teammates weren't terrible.

I have to agree with Joe about this. If Kiner had played with the Twins for those two years, the odds are pretty favorable that they still get to the World Series, while Puckett would be added to the HOF list of players without a WS appearance had he played with the Bucs from the Forties and Fifties.
   174. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 17, 2006 at 06:59 PM (#2263802)
What I do is take the approximate 2006 salary structure for FA eligible players.

I'm assuming that salary is 100% correlated with performance, and that the market properly values the players. Then I'm taking that valuation, and applying to all seasons of the past. A season to which I assign 20 million dollars of value is an off-the-charts great season, like Arky Vaughn 1934. The value of each season decays according to the same exponential which describes the 2006 salary structure. Gil Hodges 1953 is a 10 million dollar season. Tony Gwynn 1990 is a 5 million dollar season.

I then sum the dollar values of all seasons over the player's career, and rank accordingly. This system appropriate credits the player for the extra value of superlative performance, but leaves open the opportunity for a long career guy to still accrue value.
   175. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 17, 2006 at 07:14 PM (#2263808)
I'm assuming that salary is 100% correlated with performance

Perceived performance, that is. Then you have the "getting the fannies in the seats" quotient, which has nothing to do with winning games on the field.
   176. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: December 17, 2006 at 07:15 PM (#2263812)
Joe,

Again I have to take issue when you say that peak voters don't care about very good seasons, it's a strawman for most of us. Yes, very godo seasons help to win pennants, but great seasons help more and I think the difference is more than linear. However, if given teh choice between two players, one who had great seasons only and one who had very good seasons with more tail to his career, i will almost always choose the former. This doesn't mean that I dont' value very good seasons. Seriously I still get the feeling that you keep arguing that voters like you and anyone who uses PA has to be right because it is so much more well thought out than those of us who dont' use PA.

'zop,

I am not sure about teh methods that you are using but I definitely see your point. The market seems to value every extra win over average or replacement more than the previous win. This isn't the same as the 'how much is a win worth' studies because that deals with revenue and not the player market. Of course you already know this, but I just want state it here. A player who can be expected to play at an MVP level will get exponentially more than a player expeted to be average or a little above and that player will get exponentially more than a little is expected of. Even if the wins bewteen them (say, 9, 4.5, and 0) are teh same the salary structure will proablby be more like 15mil, 6mil, 500,000, or something of that nature. Of course teh market isn't perfect adn you ahve Carlos Lee getting a lot of money, but that derviesa s much from player misvaluation than the market all of a sudden valuing slightly above average performance. SO I guess all of which is to say that you method makes sense to me.
   177. DanG Posted: December 17, 2006 at 07:18 PM (#2263813)
I'm assuming that salary is 100% correlated with performance, and that the market properly values the players.

I don't see how any system underpinned with this assumption could possibly be accurate.
   178. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 17, 2006 at 07:27 PM (#2263819)
I don't see how any system underpinned with this assumption could possibly be accurate.

Because, remarkably enough, it's a strong assumption. Imagine that, teams behave more-or-less rationally!


If you think about it, it makes sense. The only way to really beef up attendance and TV ratings in a sustainable fashion is to win. To win, you need players who provide WARP consistently. Therefore, that's what the market values.

I'm not denying that there are players who are grossly overpaid (Jeter) or underpaid (Vlad) for reasons that have nothing to do with performance. But I do believe that these cancel each other out, so that if you take the salary structure as a whole and apply it to WARP, you get a reasonable approximation of how an ideally efficient market would have valued seasons of the past.
   179. Adam Schafer Posted: December 17, 2006 at 08:24 PM (#2263855)
Maybe I'm not looking at this right, or missed something while reading over all of this, but what do the Ted Lilly's, Gil Meche's, and other mediocre pitching signings this year do to your system? You're not implying that b/c of their huge contracts, that they would be serious candidates for our project are you?
   180. DanG Posted: December 17, 2006 at 08:27 PM (#2263856)
But I do believe that these cancel each other out

OK, yeah, very persuasive.
   181. Howie Menckel Posted: December 17, 2006 at 08:59 PM (#2263872)
"But I do believe that these cancel each other out"

I gotta say, you lost me on that one, too.
You believe it because......
   182. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 17, 2006 at 09:59 PM (#2263899)
<iMaybe I'm not looking at this right, or missed something while reading over all of this, but what do the Ted Lilly's, Gil Meche's, and other mediocre pitching signings this year do to your system? You're not implying that b/c of their huge contracts, that they would be serious candidates for our project are you?</i>

No player's contract affects the evaluation of his merit. I'm simply using the 2006 (last year) salary structure as a whole to figure out the exponential equation that relates WARP to "value".
   183. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 17, 2006 at 10:02 PM (#2263901)
I gotta say, you lost me on that one, too.
You believe it because......


It doesn't matter either way, frankly. Lets say it didn't cancel out, and on average, players were paid 2 million more than their performance demanded, +- 2million (1SD). The equation I'd use to translate WARP to salary would be biased, and peak would probably be slightly undervalued, but it wouldn't make a huge difference.
   184. sunnyday2 Posted: December 17, 2006 at 11:07 PM (#2263924)
How does this work for MVP awards? Maybe Rookie of the Year? Cy? Seems very promising.
   185. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 18, 2006 at 01:00 AM (#2263972)
I mean, we all know that a star doesn't typically impact a team's W-L record more than 5-7 games and a superstar is lucky to make a team 10 wins better - I mean with Al Pujols having an MVP caliber season, the Cards won 83 games this year.

So why would it shock anyone that over the course a career a superstar isn't going to typically flip more than a pennant or so all by himself? Or that one player isn't going to have more than a 5 or 10% chance of pushing a team from not winning a pennant to winning one?



Pujols is an interesting example. I would be curious to know whether players at the extreme like Bonds 2000-2004 or Ruth or peak Mantle or peak Williams actually do flip a pennant or not.

No player's contract affects the evaluation of his merit. I'm simply using the 2006 (last year) salary structure as a whole to figure out the exponential equation that relates WARP to "value".

Right, so I think I get what you're saying. You're comparing the ratio of marginal wins or WAR to salary in today's market, then retroactively applying that to prior seasons to see how other players would compare to today's players.

If that's the case, I have three questions.
1) How do you account for the decreasing workloads of pitchers over time? (or is it built in somewhere?)
2) How do you deal with historical relief issues? (esp. relievers before, say, 1950)
3) Is there any theoretical dissonance when you get back to the deadball era due to the prevelance, then, of "inside" baseball and the ultra-low scoring context?
   186. Chris Fluit Posted: December 18, 2006 at 01:15 AM (#2263983)
Because, remarkably enough, it's a strong assumption.
No, it isn't.

Imagine that, teams behave more-or-less rationally!
No, they don't.

If you think about it, it makes sense.
No, it doesn't.

#1. Salary is not 100% correlated with performance.

Pitcher A: 11-9, 213 IP, 3.55 ERA, ERA+ 125
Pitcher B: 11-8, 186 IP, 4.48 ERA, ERA+ 97
Pitcher C: 15-13, 181 IP, 4.31 ERA, ERA+ 109
Pitcher D: 15-14, 210 IP, 4.20 ERA, ERA+ 110

Which pitcher deserves the most money? Obviously, Pitcher A. Which pitcher deserves the second-most money? Would you say Pitcher D who had the better ERA? Would you say Pitcher C who had an ERA and ERA+ that was close but had a slightly higher winning percentage? Or would you go with Pitcher B who had the worst ERA, worst ERA+, least wins, second fewest IP, but the best winning percentage? I'd take Pitcher D, then C, then B- especially because I know that B pitched in a pitcher's park.

Here's how the off-season played out:
Pitcher A: $47 million over 3 years, average 15.667 per year
Pitcher B: $55 million over 5 years, average 11 per year
Pitcher C: $40 million over 4 years, average 10 per year
Pitcher D: $10 million for 1 year

Pitcher A's salary makes sense. But the rest is completely unrelated to on-field performance. The second-best pitcher got the worst contract! Why? Probably because the second-best pitcher was 40 and nearing retirement. So the expectation of performance next season was a consideration during the signing process and some general managers figured they'd rather have a younger pitcher than the one who actually performed better on the field. Predicted future performance can be as related to salaries as documented past performance. And while I may agree with the idea, it does show that salaries are not 100% correlated to performance. I'd also take pitcher C over pitcher B, yet pitcher B got the better contract. Why? Probably because the team that signed Pitcher B was a traditionally weak franchise that wanted to show it's fans that they were serious about winning. Which is the case. The GM who signed pitcher B said so. But while that may be a viable consideration, it also skews the theory that salary is 100% correlated to performance. It's not. There are other factors that play into a salary: predicted future performance, "sending a message," being the last guy on the market, and more.

#2. If I understand your defense of your theory correctly, even if the individual contracts are not logical, the overall salary structure is. So although the GMs may have messed up who got what contract, they were at least correct that the best pitcher deserved 15.7 per year, the next best 11, and the other two 10 and 10. In other words, the best pitcher was 42% more valuable than the next best pitcher while pitcher two was 10% more valuable than pitchers three and four.

Already I see a flaw in your theory. A is clearly the best pitcher. D is slightly better than C, although it's close. And B is clearly the worst pitcher. So a salary structure of 15.7-11-11-10 would be better than the reality of 15.7-11-10-10. That would capture the relative worth of the next three pitchers. But that's not what we have. So the salary structure does not capture the relative worth of the next three pitchers seeing a significant gap between pitchers two and three where there is none, and not between pitchers three and four where there is one.

But what about pitcher A? Is pitcher A's 15 point advantage in ERA+ worth 42% more than the second-best pitcher? Not if we're talking about wins- not when pitchers C and D had more wins than pitcher A. Not if we're talking about playoffs- only one of the four pitchers went to the playoffs this year; that was D and he was traded to a playoff-bound team at the deadline. I agree that Pitcher A is more valuable than pitchers B, C and D. But there is nothing to indicate to me that Pitcher A is 42% more valuable than the others- the number that you would come up with based strictly on salaries.

And for the record: Pitcher A is Jason Schmidt, B is Gil Meche, C is Ted Lilly and D is Greg Maddux.
   187. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: December 18, 2006 at 01:45 AM (#2263995)
For the record i would like to say that 'zop's idea isn't a bad one. Teams do usually pay more for each additional win thean they did for the previous one, up to a certain point of course. However, there does seem to be so many problems with the actually building some sort of concrete value system with it that I doubt such a system would yield many useful results. I udnerstand the backlash to the system, but does anyone actually feel that falasry structure is anywhere close to linear? I woudl ahve to think that it clearly would weight each additional win more than PA does and therefore make a more convincing argument for peak than PA does.

Just because the system itself has tons of problems when attempts to evaluate individual players doesn't mean that the udnerlying idea has somethign to add in the macro. And it may be worth a look at see what exactly such a system would produce. Expecially if 'zop is doing all of the work.

Or we could all just shout it down now.
   188. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 18, 2006 at 01:52 AM (#2263997)
Just because the system itself has tons of problems when attempts to evaluate individual players doesn't mean that the udnerlying idea has somethign to add in the macro.

That's kind of how I feel about linear weights-based analytical systems. While I think they have problems evaluating individual players (though not as great as they did decades ago), I think they have a lot of merit if I were setting up a team.
   189. sunnyday2 Posted: December 18, 2006 at 02:04 AM (#2264004)
>Why should Kirby Puckett get more credit than Ralph Kiner because his teammates weren't terrible.

Joe, I never said "should." I said that that is how people in the real world actually vote when the chips are down.
   190. Chris Fluit Posted: December 18, 2006 at 02:17 AM (#2264013)
I agree that great seasons deserve more weight than very good seasons, but the idea that salary structure is in any way indicative of what that relative weight should be is dubious.
   191. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 18, 2006 at 03:13 AM (#2264058)
'zop - Let's say I'm willing to buy into your assumptions . . . what is the scale - like I listed on another thread, showing what the Pennants Added would be for each WAR from 1 to 15 (if you are using proper replacement level, there are going to be very few seasons at 15 WAR, and they are pretty much all from Walter Johnson, Honus Wagner, Babe Ruth and Barry Bonds). Could you share your scale like 1 WAR is worth $2 million, 2 are worth $3 million, etc.?

Maybe that would help . . . I still don't think there's any evidence that the market is rational (for one, the reasons Chris mentions in post 187), or close to it, but that doesn't mean your results might not still be reasonable. I'm definitely open to listening.

Marc - your post made me think that Puckett was an example of how you felt voters should vote, not what you thought does happen. Sorry if I misunderstood.
   192. Brent Posted: December 18, 2006 at 04:37 AM (#2264120)
I largely agree with 'zop's position -- in fact I developed a similar argument a long time ago -- see the 1939 ballot discussion. Pennants added is designed to measure the effects of a really good season that comes at random -- think Zoilo Versalles 1965 or Dean Chance 1964. Occasionally, such a season will provide the margin for a championship; hence PA credits such a season with a little extra value. The free agent market, on the other hand, is dominated by teams that are already pretty good, but think they need a boost to get them to a pennant. For such a team, an average player generally isn't enough; they need to add an all-star or soomeone who has a shot at an MVP.

My one difference with 'zop is that in my system, the exponential growth in value eventually returns to linear at some point (probably about 27-30 win shares or 9-10 WARP). Thus there's a big premium in my system to moving from average to all-star or near-MVP level, but my evaluations aren't completely dominated by huge peaks.
   193. Howie Menckel Posted: December 18, 2006 at 04:49 AM (#2264129)
I should clarify that it's an interesting argument - it's just that I need evidence that it works.
   194. DanG Posted: December 18, 2006 at 03:29 PM (#2264226)
I should clarify that it's an interesting argument - it's just that I need evidence that it works.

Exactly. It seems to be a potentially insightful avenue, but we haven't seen anything yet.

I would offer that I doubt that salaries increase at the same ratio as value increases. This relates to #193, that teams will often pay a huge premium for a small increase in value based on what the team thinks they need to "get over the hump." Or they will pay a huge premium while gambling on future performance. OTOH, sometimes free agents will settle for less salary than their value indicates because they want to play with a particular team. I'm sure you can think of many other common instances where salary is clearly out of relation to value.
   195. DavidFoss Posted: December 18, 2006 at 04:21 PM (#2264253)
Pennants added is designed to measure the effects of a really good season that comes at random -- think Zoilo Versalles 1965 or Dean Chance 1964. Occasionally, such a season will provide the margin for a championship; hence PA credits such a season with a little extra value.

Huh? Zoilo's 1965 would have been worth the same in PA regardless of the value of the surrounding dozen seasons.

The free agent market, on the other hand, is dominated by teams that are already pretty good, but think they need a boost to get them to a pennant. For such a team, an average player generally isn't enough; they need to add an all-star or soomeone who has a shot at an MVP.

History is filled with second place teams who could have used an average player to plug a gaping hole in their lineup. The 60s Giants were just as star-laden as the 50s Yankees, but the Yankees had better role players. Many of our most HOM-laden teams didn't win much (Indians come to mind, Phillies another) for some reason or another. We've discussed this many years ago.

Anyhow, I see what you mean about paying premium for last minute improvements, though. Every trading deadline there is a shortage of available players at one position or another leading to a plethora of articles titles "Which Lucky Team Will End Up With Kris Benson?" or "Who Has A Leg Up In the Race for Joe Randa?" Looking back, these articles look silly, but at the time every team was looking for that last piece when there wasn't that much available.
   196. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 18, 2006 at 05:58 PM (#2264319)
Does anyone have a spreadsheet with BP WARP1 for, well, all of history?

I would appreciate it...I need it to start working with pitchers and such.
   197. TomH Posted: December 18, 2006 at 10:05 PM (#2264469)
Who will be the highest-rated player in James' Historical Abstract that we fail to elect? Possibiities:

C Munson 14th
1B Mattingy 12th, Perez 13th, W Clark 14th
2B Whitaker 13th
3B Dr Evans 10th, Bando 11th
SS Aparicio 13th
LF Brock 15th
CF Murhphy 12th, Berger 13th (Wynn is 10th, but he looks like a very good shot to go in)
RF Parker 14h, Bb Bonds 15th
P Dean 25th
   198. TomH Posted: December 18, 2006 at 10:07 PM (#2264473)
Yes, I spell check my emails, work docs and Christams cards, but not my internet posts......

C Munson 14th
1B Mattingly 12th, Perez 13th, W Clark 14th
2B Whitaker 13th
3B Dr Evans 10th, Bando 11th
SS Aparicio 13th
LF Brock 15th
CF Murphy 12th, Berger 13th (Wynn is 10th, but he looks like a very good shot to go in)
RF Parker 14th, Bb Bonds 15th
P Dean 25th
   199. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: December 19, 2006 at 12:02 AM (#2264548)
Given the proportion of pitchers that we're likely to have, I would say Dean is likely to be the winner. He probably had a large subjective score - wait, I can check that! (Back when the Abstract came out, I figured how the numerical rankings were worked out, although I used the Abstract WS numbers, which apparently have tons of errors.)

And I'm wrong - Dean comes in 21st based just on the numbers.

Since I have it open, here's the "numbers only" version of Tom's list:
C - Tenace 12th, Howard 15th, Munson 17th,
1B* - Clark 5th, McGwire 8th, Mattingly 14th
2B - Knoblauch 14th, Whitaker 15th, Doyle 16th
3B - Rosen 8th, Bando 10th, Martinez 12th
SS - Stephens 13th, Fregosi 15th, Wills 20th
LF - Howard 13th, Keller 15th, Belle 18th
CF - Berger 11th, Murphy 12th, Puckett 13th
RF - Singleton 11th, Bo. Bonds 13th, Parker 16th (Gary Sheffield's 12th, FWIW)
P - Dean 21st, Walters 25th, Willis 30th

(*I always feel compelled to point this out - Dick Allen? 2nd.)
   200. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: December 19, 2006 at 12:18 AM (#2264554)
And let me do that again, leaving out the timeline factor:

C - Tenace 13th, Bresnahan 14th, Howard 16th
1B- Clark 5th, McGwire 9th, Chance 15th
2B- Doyle 13th, Whitaker 17th, Knoblauch 18th (I realized I assumed we're putting Robbie Alomar in - probably a safe one, but he's 10th/12th if you care.)
3B - Rosen 8th, Bando 11th, McGraw 12th
SS - Stephens 15th, Fregosi 18th, Wills 20th
LF - Howard 14th, Keller 15th, O'Neill 21st*
CF - Berger 9th, Wilson 13th, Duffy 14th*
RF - Singleton 13th, Bo. Bonds 14th, Parker 16th
P - Dean 19th, Willis 21st, Walters 25th

(*There are a couple of goofball results because I didn't know how James adjusted certain things, so I skipped them. Elmer Smith (I think) is 19th among LF because of splitting time as a pitcher in the 1880s. Benny Kauff comes in at 11th among CF with unadjusted Federal League numbers.)

Other guys who got the "presumed-induction" nod: Jimmy Wynn, Nellie Fox, Alan Trammell, Ted Simmons, Bobby Grich, Ozzie Smith, Barry Larkin, Craig Biggio, Frank Thomas, Paul Molitor, plus the completely obvious ones.
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