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

Monday, January 19, 2009

2010 Ballot Discussion

2010 (December 7, 2009)—elect 3
WS W3 Rookie Name-Pos
376 132.6 1988 Roberto Alomar-2B
346 121,8 1986 Barry Larkin-SS
341 106.6 1987 Fred McGriff-1B
305 104.4 1989 Edgar Martinez-DH/3B
272 108.8 1990 Robin Ventura-3B
260 79.1 1987 Ellis Burks-CF/RF
234 74.9 1990 Juan Gonzalez-RF/LF*
227 70.3 1991 Ray Lankford-CF
221 62.9 1990 Todd Zeile-3B
190 67.2 1987 Benito Santiago-C*
183 56.5 1992 Eric Karros-1B
161 58.9 1987 Mark McLemore-2B
126 59.0 1992 Pat Hentgen-P
126 53.7 1987 Mike Jackson-RP
130 41.6 1991 David Segui-1B
128 41.6 1994 Fernando Viña-2B
106 44.8 1991 Rod Beck-RP (2007)

Candidates
Age Eligible

100 1948 Billy Werber-3B 1/22/09
99 1954 Lonny Frey-2B 9/13/09
93 1960 Preacher Roe-P 11/9/08
93 1960 Sid Hudson-P 10/10/08
92 1958 Dom DiMaggio-CF 5/8/09
89 1960 Larry Jansen-P 10/10/09
86 1963 George Kell-3B 3/24/09
82 1966 Whitey Lockman-1B/LF 3/17/09
77 1975 Woodie Held-SS/CF 6/10/09
75 1967 Herb Score-P/Broadcaster 11/11/08
73——- Harry Kalas-Broadcaster 4/13/09
71 1975 Tom Tresh-LF/SS 10/15/08
64 1987 Dave Roberts-P 1/9/09
63 1985 Dock Ellis-P 12/19/08
54 1986 Mark Fidrych-P 4/13/09
53 1998 Dave Smith-RP 12/17/08

Thanks to Dan Greenia for the numbers!

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 19, 2009 at 02:44 PM | 516 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. Mike Emeigh Posted: January 23, 2009 at 09:57 PM (#3059273)
Your replacement level merely establishes your preference for rate vs. playing time. If you take that too far, you'll wind up inducting someone like Mike Donlin. One question is how big your Hall is, another is how much you want to reward quality vs. quantity.


Mike Donlin would merit consideration in my world view. I personally wouldn't include him because he had just four full seasons of playing time due to his other issues, most of which were self-inflicted - but he was among the best players in baseball when he did play.

I essentially agree with sunnyday; I'd rather have quality. And when you're only looking for the 200 (or so) best players ever, you have to make some fine choices with tools that don't have that level of granularity, which to me means that (a) you have to use multiple views and (b) you have to do what you can to distinguish between #200 and #201, including exaggerating excruciatingly small distinctions between players.

-- MWE
   102. OCF Posted: January 23, 2009 at 10:44 PM (#3059345)
The question about Mike Donlin is whether you might actually prefer George Stone (.358/.417/.501 in 1906 is quite something.)

..he had just four full seasons of playing time due to his other issues, most of which were self-inflicted...

Upon reading about Donlin in the NBJHBA, I wondered who he reminded me of. Dennis Rodman came to mind.
   103. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: January 23, 2009 at 11:08 PM (#3059363)
A Surfeit of Peaches Graham--I very much disagree with you on this point. A fielder who makes 5 plays and 200 errors is indubitably less valuable to his team (in terms of contributing to a pennant) than a DH (giving them the same offense). Clearly, the manager would deserve most of the blame for continuing to let the guy put on a glove, and for HoM voting purposes I ignore all seasons below 0 WARP. But the team is much further away from a pennant with a +2 hitting, -7 fielding SS (2 wins below replacement) than it is with a +2 hitting DH (2 wins above replacement).

Where is the quota? There's no rule that the HoM simply must have a given number of players ay every position...
   104. Chris Cobb Posted: January 24, 2009 at 02:15 AM (#3059477)
Bringing the comment to which Dan R has responded over to page 2 for convenience.

A Surfeit of Peaches Graham wrote:

I think I've figured it out. You're treating DH as a position. I don't really see DH as a separate position. Under your system if you had two identical players with poor fielding skills, and one played the field and the other was a DH, player 1 would rank higher. Whereas I would look at it differently. I would rate a DH as the equivalent of Helen Keller in the field -- i.e., he made no plays, and therefore saved no runs, while even a player who dropped every routine popup would get some fielding credit, because he at least would prevent some triples and inside-the-park home runs.

Dan R's objections are sound, but this argument has more flaws that ought to be enumerated.

DH of course isn't a "position," since positions are on the field, but it is a "designated" role. The role is allowed under American League rules, so AL teams have to use one in order to be competitive. Smart teams will use this role in a way that maximizes the value of their players and hence the effectiveness of the team. All that a player being given the role of regular DH tells us is that the team has decided that the strongest lineup for this team is created by that player at DH. It doesn't tell us the player has terrible defensive skills, although it is not common for teams to use an otherwise good defensive player at DH. Players often DH because of injury, or because they are injury-prone (e.g. Edgar Martinez and Paul Molitor), or because of the way a team's platoon splits work out. Few players are exclusively DHs for a single season, let alone for a long career, in any case.

Saying that DHs should receive some sort of penalty because they don't play the field is like saying that all AL pitchers should receive a penalty because they are incapable of hitting. They aren't incapable of hitting: the rules define their role such that they don't hit. If they did hit, some would be good hitters (for pitchers) and some would be bad hitters (for pitchers), so that some would gain value and some would lose value if they played in a "pitchers hit" league instead of a DH league. But they don't. Similarly, if DHs did play the field, and in fact most of them do play the field for some part of the season (although more are poor defensive players than good ones), they would gain or lose value relative to one another and relative to other position players based on their fielding abilities. But they don't, so we have no basis for giving or taking away value from them for elements of the game that are outside of their responsibility.
   105. Paul Wendt Posted: January 24, 2009 at 06:26 AM (#3059551)
re-quoting Graham,
You're treating DH as a position. I don't really see DH as a separate position. Under your system if you had two identical players with poor fielding skills, and one played the field and the other was a DH, player [2] would rank higher.
Yes, in the sense you mean "poor fielding skills" that is true. The same happens with any pair of roles. Two players are both capable of contributing more in role A than role B. The team needs one to fill role A and one to fill role B. Generally the one assigned to their natural role A will contribute more than the other.

Given the pure purpose to win games, a team that understands this point will consider letting go one of those two players and acquiring one who is capable of contributing more in role B. In the hypothetical case at hand, to exchange one of the natural DH (role A) for a natural 1B would be a classic trade.
   106. Bleed the Freak Posted: January 24, 2009 at 03:43 PM (#3059609)
Preliminary Judgments

1. Barry Larkin - Replaces Henderson on my ballot. A truly great shortstop overshadowed by Cal Ripken Jr and playing in the small market of Cincinnati. Outstanding seasons in 1988, 1990-92, and 1996, all star quality in 94, 95, 98, 99. Nice filler seasons in 89 and 93. Underrated as well, due to fine defensive and baserunning play.

2. Roberto Alomar – Sublime seasons in 91-93, 96, 99, and 01. All star type seasons almost every year from 88-01. Fell off a cliff in 02 at 34. Any chance he was older than he claimed? He had quite an impressive campaign as a 20 year old. Will be interesting to see what cap he wears into the HOM? Dan R shows him as most valuable for the Cleveland Indians, but the Toronto Blue Jays would be a fine choice as well.

3. Rick Reuschel – A truly outstanding 1977 season, with all-star caliber years from 1973-1980, and an additional four seasons of solid filler seasons. Excellent PA numbers. What if he would have had a Jim Palmer type of defense behind him? Instead, he had some stone gloves and is largely unrecognized for his greatness.

4. Bert Campaneris – a player greatly benefited by lightly documented value, namely, his baserunning ability and glove defense. In a season of dominating pitchers, Campaneris and his 4 HR’s were nearly an MVP caliber season in 1968, and his 1970 (20 HR’s!) and 1973 seasons where outstanding as well. Additional all-star seasons in 1971-72, 1974, and 1976-77. Solid filler in four other seasons. Quite valuable in a time when Jackie and Enzo Hernandez dotted the diamond.

5. David Cone - Cy Young season in 1994 (deserved) and close to it in 1993. All-star type of years in 1988, 1990-91, and 1997-99, and a few solid filler years. Outstanding, five time World Series champion performer. While there is a dearth of qualified pitching candidates from the 1990s, I don’t see Don Sutton or Red Ruffing on the outside of the HOM.

6. Phil Rizzuto – this guy will make or break the HOM based upon the electorate’s war credit theory. It appears he was suffering from sickness, which dampened his 1946 numbers, but his 1941 and 1942 seasons were excellent prior to the war, and that is more likely what his 1943-45 seasons would appear to be. Giving war credit is easier for me if a player has good durability in the remainder of his career, as Rizzuto has. One MVP season, 2 other excellent seasons, with 4 more all-star seasons (7 after war-credit). 1950’s AL inferior to NL, drops him below McGraw.

7. David Concepcion – excellent base running skills, stratospheric defense peak during Big Red Machine’s three pennant run. 3 seasons worthy of Top 5-10 MVP - 1974, 1976, 1979. Five additional all-star type seasons: 1975, 1977-78, 1981-82. Adds a few more filler seasons. An even better playoff performer than in the regular season.

8. Don Newcombe – tough guy to place. He feels like the best available from the 1940’s-1950’s era that is lagging in electees, and the electorate is a bit light on pitching in general. Deserves credit for 1952/53 Korea conflict and came in guns blazing in 1949 as a Brooklyn rookie, so 1948 is a year he likely deserves some credit for. Nearly Cy Young type season in 1956, all-star seasons in 49-51, 59, and projected in 53-54, and a couple filler seasons. May have received more opportunities late in his career if he played in a different time era.

9. Gavvy Cravath – another challenging fellow to place. How exactly would this guy have faired in a HR environment, getting the chance to start in MLB at 22-24. A monstrous NL bat from 1913-1917 at ages of 31-36, with 5 consecutive all-star seasons, and a MVP type year in 1915. I’m not sure how much credit he deserves prior to turning 31, but he places here for the time being. My 2009 ballot reflected him as a poor defender, but I am warming up to the idea that he was more decent/mediocre than anything else, enough to push him up 5 spots.

10. Urban Shocker – Don’t forget an all-star type season for Urban in 1918. He put a Cy Young type performance in 1921, and an excellent 1922. 1920 and 1923-26 are all-star caliber years, and he throws in a couple filler seasons. He comes up quite impressively in the PA system.

11. Johnny Pesky – Bookending WWII, Pesky put up MVP type seasons. He throws in three more all-star type seasons, with a couple of above filler campaigns. Conservative WWII credit would give him an additional MVP type season, and two more all-star type seasons. That’s eight excellent seasons, with at least three MVP type campaigns. An electee with War Credit only.

12. Bill Monroe – Upon looking at Brent’s MLE’s, Monroe stats seem to fit a HOM profile. Projected 8100 PA’s, OPS+ 133, with positive defensive value. His fielding reputation is shown as being equal to or greater than Jimmy Collins. He appeared to bat in key lineup spots on great teams. Good enough to play 2B/3B in his time defensively and with the stick. As for reputations, resident Negro Leagues expert Gary A mentioned four players worthy of Hall of Fame induction in an interview recently with Scott Simkus. Three of those (John Beckwith, Home Run Johnson, and Dick Lundy) have been elected. The other is Monroe.

13. Luis Tiant - new to the ballot - I was underestimating the voluminous amount of prime type seasons Tiant put together, along with subjectively knocking him for pitching with an all-time great cohort in the 1970's. Excellent 1968 and 1974 campaigns. Sure fire all-star quality in 72, 73, 76. Fringe all-star/above average seasons in 66, 67, 69, 75, 78. The HOM is a bit light on electing SP's, so I hope that one of the pitchers on my ballot will be elected (Along with Larkin and Alomar).

14. Edgar Martinez - with MiL credit for 88 would move ahead of Tiant, but Calgary was a hitter's paradise (Ala Albuquerque - As a young boy, I could never figure why Billy Ashley wouldn't become a star...a hitter's paradise), and I am not sold on Edgar getting extra credit. Outstanding in 1992, with all-star quality seasons almost every year (91, 92, 96-98, 00-01). It was fun to watch him hit!

15A. Leaning toward Bob Johnson over Tommy Leach - All prime, all the time (1934-45). A further look at his record shows a player that likely would have played in MLB at the age of 24/25 (1932). Was a quality defensive outfielder, which can be underestimated, he slugged a 134+ OPS his rookie season.

From the Bob Johnson thread:

38. Eric Chalek (Dr. Chaleeko) Posted: June 14, 2006 at 01:00 PM (#2063678)
Well, I dunno. Connie Mack watched Johnson play and thought that he couldn't hit a ML curve ball. MiL curve balls often are not quite as good.

Well, sure, but that's assuming that the PCL was so absolutely minor at the time. As late as the 1950s, it was making noises about declaring itself major, and at no time was in the thrall of big-league ball. Given all the amazing players coming out of the West in that era, and given that the geography of the country was much different then from a travel and communications point of view, it's a dubious proposition to say that a) PCL curves were that much worse than MLB curves b) Mack had enough information from a spring training's worth of at-bats to find out whether Johnson could hit a good curve or whether he would be able to quickly adapt c) Mack had any kind of good, systematic scouting on Johnson's (or any Western player's) ability to adapt d) Johnson's subsequent PCL and MLB performance obviously countermand Mack's opinion since there's not a large spike in performance during the three years, since Johnson succeeded from day one in the big leagues, and since Johnson's not some spring chicken in these years anyway, but at an age when he's fully realizing his potential.

I'm not a Johnson fan, but if you're giving MiL credit to Waner, Averill, et al, then it's obvious that Johnson's case for MiL credit is probably even more compelling than theirs since he show the classic MiL credit profile:
a) put up a show-me season
b) got a trial and didn't make the team
c) put up another show-me year
d) put up a third
e) then did it in MLB when the team finally picked up the option or passed him to another organization.

42. Steve Treder Posted: June 14, 2006 at 01:54 PM (#2063723)
Well, sure, but that's assuming that the PCL was so absolutely minor at the time. As late as the 1950s, it was making noises about declaring itself major, and at no time was in the thrall of big-league ball. Given all the amazing players coming out of the West in that era, and given that the geography of the country was much different then from a travel and communications point of view, it's a dubious proposition to say that a) PCL curves were that much worse than MLB curves

The PCL in the early 1930s wasn't major-league caliber, but it was definitely AAA, probably even more properly understood to be something like AAAA. Few of its franchises were major league farms, and many of its better players spent their prime years playing there. It probably presented a higher quality of play than either the International League or the American Association.

The lore of how great the old PCL was is often overdone, but it was a damn fine minor league in that period, very likely the best minor league in history.

Regarding Mack's attributed justification for not promoting Johnson: I don't know how seriously I would take that. Perhaps Mack sincerely thought that to be the case, but very often people making decisions will throw out a bit of a cliche justification when pressed for one, when the truth might actually be something closer to:

- I really didn't have enough information to make a good decision, but I'm not going to tell you that
or
- I just don't like the SOB, but I'm not going to tell you that
or
- It was on the recommendation of so-and-so, who I know now was dead wrong, but I'm above hanging him out to dry in the press
or
etc. etc.

The "he couldn't hit the curve" sounds suspiciously like the boiler-plate farmed-him-out justification to me.


15B. Tommy Leach – best player remaining of the aughts, although more documented history on Bill Monroe could change my viewpoint. 1902, 1907-08, and 1914 were outstanding, top 5 MVP type of seasons. 1901, 1903-05, and 1913 were all-star type seasons and he adds a few filler seasons. I wonder how he felt playing alongside the greatest SS.


Top 10 returnees off ballot:

1940s - Bucky Walters – Jim Palmer lite for the 30s & 40s. A good pitcher made excellent by some of the greatest defenses every assembled (Bill McKechnie LOVED gloves). I would choose Virgil Trucks before Walters for war-era hurlers from the pros.

1910s – Dick Redding. He might be more worthy than Monroe amongst Negro League stars or Nap Rucker versus contemporary SP’s, but the evidence hasn’t convinced me. Excellent peak in his 20’s, but his shoulder seasons just appear to be too weak. I’d take Doc Gooden at the moment over Redding.
   107. Bleed the Freak Posted: January 24, 2009 at 04:01 PM (#3059615)
Need to change my best player of the aughts for Tommy Leach, I think Monroe was a touch better.
   108. Paul Wendt Posted: January 24, 2009 at 10:45 PM (#3059752)
The five pitchers on Bleed's ballot will remain on my at-least-hypothetical ballot (where I put at least seven, with Quinn and Cooper).

1940s - Bucky Walters – Jim Palmer lite for the 30s & 40s. A good pitcher made excellent by some of the greatest defenses every assembled (Bill McKechnie LOVED gloves). I would choose Virgil Trucks before Walters for war-era hurlers from the pros.

If we're Truckin' we should be Trout-fishin' too.


Bleed, When you quote, please mark the levels of quotation clearly. (I prefer such a reply within the Bob Johnson thread, where clear mark-up is desirable. When you quote somewhere else, the clear mark-up becomes more important.)
   109. Ned Garvin: Male Prostitute Posted: January 25, 2009 at 10:39 PM (#3060143)
A bit more info regarding Edgar...

He played about 1/3 of his career as a 3B, and a decent one at that (I think this has been discussed). Defense was in no way related to when he was called up from AAA. I don't have much to add to the minor league credit argument, I think looking at MLEs will tell us the answer, right? In theory, you could give MLE credit to everyone, since only guys that should get credit for that will have good enough MLEs to merit substantial credit anyway. One thing I remember is that when he was called up early on (1987? 1988?), his batting stance was different than it was later on. He basically had his legs straight, and bent over directly at the waist, with his bat straight up in the air. I used to wonder if changing the batting stance made a difference, but then it became conventional wisdom that he was already excellent at that point. Anyway, that is complete speculation, and not pertinent to the HoM.

Edgar switched to DH due to injury. He hurt his legs (can't remember what the deal was exactly), and after that he just couldn't run well at all. They never really recovered - he was extremely slow for the rest of his career. And he became a liability in the field, so he played DH, plus a bit of 1B during interleague games. I don't think this affects his value in any particular way either, just thought I would throw some more information out there.
   110. DL from MN Posted: January 26, 2009 at 12:10 AM (#3060195)
> If we're Truckin' we should be Trout-fishin' too.

Bridges
   111. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: January 26, 2009 at 03:37 AM (#3060314)
Yes, I've been drilling this point on all the Edgar threads. If he were truly a pure DH, he would be short of the in/out line. But as a 1/3 3B, 2/3 DH, he's probably in.
   112. Mike Green Posted: January 26, 2009 at 09:55 PM (#3060803)
1/3 3B, 2/3 DH overstates it a bit for Edgar, in my view, both in terms of games played and in terms of peak/prime effectiveness. I'd say 1/4, 3/4. He was a very good third baseman in 91-92, and this does matter.

Bill James once said of Jose Cruz Sr. that one in a thousand players is a better hitter at age 37 than at age 27. Edgar was better at ages 37-40 than at ages 27-30. How many can say that?
   113. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: January 27, 2009 at 06:16 AM (#3061202)
Touché on the playing time; it is 1/4 vs. 3/4. It still matters, though.
   114. sunnyday2 Posted: January 29, 2009 at 03:01 AM (#3062945)
In my little corner of the world, the problem with MiL credit is pretty clear. It's arbitrarily given. We pick out a player, we say, well, arguably he was of ML caliber, and so we give him some MLE credit.

As somebody said, well, every player and every MiL season in history has some kind of MLE value. But we only calculate our pet projects. Whereas if you did MiL MLEs for everybody, who's to say you wouldn't find other people whose career total value now exceeds that of your pet? But instead, we just look at player A and we give him 3.5 WARP or whatever, and we give everybody else zero. Not fair.

Way way back when, I think the concept was that you give MiL MLE credit when a player is clearly and obviously of ML caliber, like Lefty Grove and some guys in the old IA. But then came the mission creep and after while we were awarding MiL MLE credit not to guys who were clearly and obviously of ML caliber, but guys who were arguably of ML caliber, and then of guys who had any MLE value at all after discounts.

I once said, hey, what about George Sisler at Michigan, and got laughed at. I don't think that's much more far fetched than some of what's been proposed, frankly.

MiL MLE credit is a valid idea, but sometimes it becomes a crutch after the fact.
   115. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 29, 2009 at 03:15 AM (#3062953)
Whereas if you did MiL MLEs for everybody, who's to say you wouldn't find other people whose career total value now exceeds that of your pet? But instead, we just look at player A and we give him 3.5 WARP or whatever, and we give everybody else zero. Not fair.


First of all, it would be idiotic to create MiL for players that we all know damn well have zero chance of making the HoM with or without credit for those seasons.

Secondly, if there is any candidate that any voter thinks deserves MiL, then please post it here.

I once said, hey, what about George Sisler at Michigan, and got laughed at. I don't think that's much more far fetched than some of what's been proposed, frankly.


If a player had a season that was of ML quality, then I have no problem adding it to his resume. The problem is how to do it.
   116. Tiboreau Posted: January 29, 2009 at 03:59 AM (#3062982)
In my little corner of the world, the problem with MiL credit is pretty clear. It's arbitrarily given. We pick out a player, we say, well, arguably he was of ML caliber, and so we give him some MLE credit.

As somebody said, well, every player and every MiL season in history has some kind of MLE value. But we only calculate our pet projects. Whereas if you did MiL MLEs for everybody, who's to say you wouldn't find other people whose career total value now exceeds that of your pet? But instead, we just look at player A and we give him 3.5 WARP or whatever, and we give everybody else zero. Not fair.


There are two responses to giving MLE credit. The first is to ignore all performance outside the MLB (except concerning Negro Leaguers) simply because they weren't contributing to a pennant at baseball's highest level. The second is to evaluate situations on a case by case basis, giving credit only when you feel that a player has proven he can play at the highest level, but is routinely ignored.

Evaluating players on a case by case basis is not arbitrary; it is a recognition that of very rare circumstances that have held a player back, and for each individual both the reason for this and how well they perform are very different for each player and each voter needs to make their own decision. If it's considered arbitrary to not apply a specific standard to everyone then you don't have to, but I'd rather recognize situations such as independent minor leagues (Arlett, Cravath, Grove) & blacklisting (C. Jones) than not. It's no different for everyone to weigh questionable situations, decide whether or not to give such players credit than it is for voters to weigh peak & career differently, IMO.

I once said, hey, what about George Sisler at Michigan, and got laughed at. I don't think that's much more far fetched than some of what's been proposed, frankly.

Not only would you have to accumulate the data to prove that Sisler played at such a caliber and would have been able to recieve notice and join the MLB prior to that season, IMO, you would have to prove that he played at a competitive level, a level which after adjusting for competition would still leave him comparable to MLB performance. Odds are that just like taking a great Single A or AA performance and translating it now, translating Sisler's college ball performance would leave him looking much more inferior than you think.

If there are specific cases where you disagree with MLE credit, like Stan Coveleski ,what are they and for what reasons? Do we have Coveleski's stats on his HoM page, and is there proof that he played at MLB caliber and was restricted due to playing in an the independent minors? I don't see any; I have his minor league numbers at home but I'm at work right now, which I should get back to. . . .
   117. JPWF13 Posted: January 29, 2009 at 05:28 AM (#3063025)
First of all, it would be idiotic to create MiL for players that we all know damn well have zero chance of making the HoM with or without credit for those seasons.


Not a Petagine fan?
:-)
   118. HGM Posted: January 29, 2009 at 06:53 AM (#3063059)
Question, why are Benito Santiago and Juan Gonzalez eligible despite playing games in 2005? I was under the impression that the HoM followed the same rules as the HoF for first-time candidates.
   119. OCF Posted: January 29, 2009 at 07:40 AM (#3063070)
It's our "token appearance" rule, which is one place where we do explicitly differ from the Hall of Fame. Once a player's career has begun to wind down, a year in which he plays something less than some small threshold does not reset his click. Is the threshold 10 games for a position player? Or did we put it in terms of AB or PA? One of the HoM founders (which I'm not) could refresh my memory on that.

Santiago appeared in 6 games, 23 AB in 2005. Gonzalez in 1 game, 1 AB. Both seasons are clearly token, so we treat their eligibility as if they had retired after 2004.
   120. HGM Posted: January 29, 2009 at 07:58 AM (#3063072)
Okay, thanks. Just double checked the Constitution and it's 10 games for position players and 5 for pitchers. Thanks. :)
   121. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 29, 2009 at 01:31 PM (#3063097)
First of all, it would be idiotic to create MiL for players that we all know damn well have zero chance of making the HoM with or without credit for those seasons.


Not a Petagine fan?
:-)


Heh.

BTW, I meant to type MLEs, not MiL, in the above sentence.
   122. DL from MN Posted: January 29, 2009 at 06:54 PM (#3063403)
I discussed my WPA method for adding postseason credit previously (normalize each postseason to 4 wins in a pennant, zero out negative postseasons, add up all postseasons). I've worked up several pitchers currently at the top of my ballot and some surrounding them. I plan on working up all the pitchers as we go through the voting. Feel free to doublecheck my numbers.

Pitcher PennantWPA
------- -----
Bridges: 1.36
Coveleski: 1.32
Tiant: 0.49
Trout: 0.48
Dean: 0.46
Cone: 0.43
Marichal: 0.21
KBrown: 0.20
Saberhagen: 0.15
Stieb: 0.10
Trucks: 0.01
Appier: 0.01
Reuschel: 0.00
Shocker: 0.00
Finley: 0.00

I previously had Cone and Reuschel nearly tied. I plan on giving Cone a boost equivalent to half a win over replacement career value on the basis of these numbers. Likewise, I had Tommy Bridges 2nd and he's clearly staying there with his terrific postseason numbers. I'll work up John, Willis, Walters and Tanana next.
   123. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: January 29, 2009 at 08:34 PM (#3063480)
Interesting stuff DL. Would be interested in seeing someone like Lefty Gomez, Whitey Ford, Allie Reynolds . . . Burleigh Grimes had some good post-seasons too, especially 1931.
   124. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: January 29, 2009 at 08:35 PM (#3063483)
Rollie Fingers, Mariano Rivera, Goose Gossage, Bruce Sutter and Lee Smith would be very interesting to see as well.
   125. DL from MN Posted: January 29, 2009 at 09:17 PM (#3063526)
Sean Forman has all the postseason WPA data sitting in a database somewhere. I'd love to have access to it so I can run the numbers easier. Right now I'm adding them up by hand after a dozen clicks. It would be a LOT easier if he would just add WPA to the postseason stat lines for each player. I've offered him $50 in page sponsorships if he does just that.

Meanwhile if you want to add to the list it's just this:

Add up the WPA value for each series (ALDS, ALCS, WS) separately.
Divide the series WPA value by the number of games required to win a pennant (2008 would be 12) and multiply by the number of games required to win that series (3 in best of 5, 4 in best of 7).
Add all series numbers together for each pennant season.
If <0 use 0 for the value added to that pennant.
Add up all pennant series added values.
   126. DL from MN Posted: January 29, 2009 at 09:24 PM (#3063534)
A couple more numbers:

Lee Smith: 0
Vic Willis: 0
Tommy John: 0.57

Fingers is around 1.2 if you divide his total postseason WPA in half. That doesn't zero out negative postseasons or normalize the ALDS not being best of 7 so the number may change.

I've only been looking at career value but this approach could also make a "peak" season look even peakier.
   127. Obama Bomaye Posted: January 29, 2009 at 09:29 PM (#3063539)
DL, I think a major revamp of B-R is coming in the next few months, and that information will probably be accessible then.
   128. DL from MN Posted: January 29, 2009 at 09:32 PM (#3063547)
Here's Sean's post. This is all non-normalized, non-zeroed data. Postseason data makes the Curt Schilling v. Kevin Brown debate quite a bit more slanted toward Schilling.

Sean Forman Posted: January 16, 2009 at 03:26 PM (#3053902)

Baseball-Reference postseason box scores have WPA for all playoff games in history. We haven't taken the next next step of calculating batter WPA because of not taking the step to get baserunning plays properly distributed. For pitchers we do have the results.

Top 20 pitchers in wpa.


| Mariano Rivera | 454 | 10.0188 |
| Curt Schilling | 531 | 4.3455 |
| John Smoltz | 865 | 3.7090 |
| Orel Hershiser | 547 | 2.8173 |
| Andy Pettitte | 949 | 2.7569 |
| Art Nehf | 323 | 2.6739 |
| Roger Clemens | 867 | 2.6084 |
| Orlando Hernandez | 457 | 2.5879 |
| Tom Glavine | 923 | 2.5200 |
| Red Ruffing | 355 | 2.4589 |
| Mike Stanton | 232 | 2.4527 |
| Jonathan Papelbon | 98 | 2.4242 |
| Rollie Fingers | 241 | 2.3369 |
| Herb Pennock | 220 | 2.3165 |
| Allie Reynolds | 322 | 2.3162 |
| Jim Palmer | 531 | 2.2562 |
| Christy Mathewson | 406 | 2.1452 |
| Fernando Valenzuela | 271 | 2.0356 |
| Waite Hoyt | 360 | 1.9368 |
| Bill Hallahan | 174 | 1.7937 |


for the WS.



| name_common | plays | wpa_def |
+-------------------+-------+---------+
| Art Nehf | 323 | 2.6739 |
| Red Ruffing | 355 | 2.4589 |
| Herb Pennock | 220 | 2.3165 |
| Allie Reynolds | 322 | 2.3162 |
| Christy Mathewson | 406 | 2.1452 |
| Mariano Rivera | 130 | 2.1409 |
| Rollie Fingers | 142 | 1.9846 |
| Waite Hoyt | 360 | 1.9368 |
| Bill Hallahan | 174 | 1.7937 |
| Bob Gibson | 316 | 1.7489 |
| George Earnshaw | 252 | 1.6891 |
| Jack Morris | 224 | 1.6331 |
| Mike Stanton | 88 | 1.6320 |
| Lefty Grove | 206 | 1.5823 |
| Sandy Koufax | 215 | 1.5088 |
| Chief Bender | 352 | 1.4593 |
| Carl Hubbell | 207 | 1.4391 |
| Monte Pearson | 135 | 1.3549 |
| Tommy Bridges | 201 | 1.2767 |
| Tom Glavine | 229 | 1.2428 |


If you give all baserunning to the batter.


+-----------------+-------+---------+
| name_common | plays | wpa_off |
+-----------------+-------+---------+
| Pete Rose | 310 | 2.6047 |
| Lou Gehrig | 153 | 2.2942 |
| Albert Pujols | 232 | 2.1907 |
| David Ortiz | 286 | 2.0459 |
| Charlie Keller | 80 | 1.9528 |
| Manny Ramirez | 474 | 1.8563 |
| Babe Ruth | 171 | 1.8015 |
| Gary Carter | 134 | 1.7777 |
| Paul Molitor | 137 | 1.7582 |
| Dave Henderson | 147 | 1.7356 |
| Thurman Munson | 141 | 1.5987 |
| Mickey Mantle | 275 | 1.5897 |
| Lenny Dykstra | 138 | 1.5804 |
| Edgardo Alfonzo | 147 | 1.5604 |
| Kirk Gibson | 96 | 1.5600 |
| George Brett | 191 | 1.5160 |
| Frank Baker | 108 | 1.5049 |
| Willie Aikens | 54 | 1.4842 |
| Billy Hatcher | 67 | 1.3893 |
| Johnny Bench | 207 | 1.3859 |
+-----------------+-------+---------+


WS alone


| name_common | plays | wpa_off |
+----------------+-------+---------+
| Lou Gehrig | 153 | 2.2942 |
| Charlie Keller | 80 | 1.9528 |
| Babe Ruth | 171 | 1.8015 |
| Mickey Mantle | 275 | 1.5897 |
| Frank Baker | 108 | 1.5049 |
| Reggie Jackson | 117 | 1.3544 |
| Gene Tenace | 76 | 1.2398 |
| Kirk Gibson | 26 | 1.2157 |
| Willie Aikens | 29 | 1.2046 |
| Tim McCarver | 89 | 1.1941 |
| Jimmie Foxx | 73 | 1.1846 |
| Duke Snider | 154 | 1.1160 |
| Johnny Evers | 86 | 1.0614 |
| Dwight Evans | 61 | 1.0251 |
| Gil Hodges | 151 | 0.9884 |
| Yogi Berra | 302 | 0.9581 |
| Scott Brosius | 76 | 0.9326 |
| Pepper Martin | 61 | 0.9296 |
| Lonnie Smith | 129 | 0.9024 |
| Mookie Wilson | 29 | 0.8875 |


Lack of baserunning obviously helps Lonnie Smith.
   129. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: January 29, 2009 at 11:22 PM (#3063669)
DL from MN, why do you use WPA for the posteason, but my context-neutral numbers for the regular season? That's a bit inconsistent...you can get WPA for every player-season since '74 at fangraphs.com....
   130. bjhanke Posted: January 30, 2009 at 10:55 AM (#3063974)
Joe D. says, "Interesting stuff DL. Would be interested in seeing someone like Lefty Gomez, Whitey Ford, Allie Reynolds . . . Burleigh Grimes had some good post-seasons too, especially 1931."

Just to establish a ballpark for these guys, especially Grimes. The big Cardinal pitching star of the '31 series, and in general a Mr. October of the era's pitchers, was Wild Bill Hallahan, who apparently found his control when it got cold. He's on DL's list, because, well, he belongs there. Grimes was almost certainly not as good at WS WPA as Hallahan, but he might have been close. IN 1931, Hallahan was clearly the better pitcher, but not by any huge margin. Just enough to be clearly. And just to be more clear, Hallahan was nothing like in Grimes' league as a career pitcher. He was just hot in a few Octobers.

- Brock
   131. TomH Posted: January 30, 2009 at 02:17 PM (#3064007)
If you moved from WPA (every game = 1 win) to WSPA (World Series probability added, where every game moves you toward The Trophy), it's likely Finegrs would vault way ahead, likely even passing Mariano. That's what happens when your team regularly geos al the way and takes the maximum # of games to do it. Not trying to justify that particular method AT ALL, but it does seem like a logical extension of playoff WPA.

I'm the middle of researching an article on Rivera in the post-season, and how much he was worth from 1995-2007. A lot of the conclusion swings wildly depoending on the assumptions.

But kudos to S Forman for coming up with the data above.
   132. Mike Green Posted: January 30, 2009 at 03:19 PM (#3064042)
WPA is a pretty fair tool for evaluating post-season performance because you don't have to worry about adjusting for game-importance of the victory as well as victory-importance of the event. If DanR has context-neutral numbers for the post-season (with adjustments for leverage, chaining, etc.), you could use those for consistency. If he doesn't, it's not a bad idea to use the best available tool while acknowledging that you are adding apples to oranges.
   133. DL from MN Posted: January 30, 2009 at 04:40 PM (#3064174)
> why do you use WPA for the postseason?

Because how in the world do you determine postseason replacement value?
   134. Paul Wendt Posted: January 30, 2009 at 05:33 PM (#3064259)
Further, in the World Series there are no "park factors" to support adjustment for home ballpark and teammate effects.

There is a lot of statistical work to be done, or better disseminated if much has been done, regarding shared ballparks and interleague play.
   135. DL from MN Posted: January 31, 2009 at 12:38 AM (#3064749)
Tanana: 0
Bucky Walters 0.67 - he's creeping up my list
   136. Paul Wendt Posted: January 31, 2009 at 03:11 PM (#3064928)
131. TomH Posted: January 30, 2009 at 08:17 AM (#3064007)
If you moved from WPA (every game = 1 win) to WSPA (World Series probability added, where every game moves you toward The Trophy), it's likely Finegrs would vault way ahead, likely even passing Mariano. That's what happens when your team regularly geos al the way and takes the maximum # of games to do it. Not trying to justify that particular method AT ALL, but it does seem like a logical extension of playoff WPA.

It doesn't seem like a good extension to me. The logical force must flow from the measure, probability added.

As I see it the point is to include credit for playoff performance in career ratings that are denominated in wins. It is executed year by year, so it may be used to credit playoff performance in annual ratings, too. If I understand correctly, win probability added is merely handy, perhaps the only normalized measure that is handy.

--
Does anyone know how many points all the players typically score in a series, as a function of the number of games 4 to 8? (Beginning 1903 we have 4 to 8 games played.) If I understand correctly, DL from MN, I mean the sum from which you re-scale to 4.00.
   137. Paul Wendt Posted: January 31, 2009 at 03:23 PM (#3064933)
If I understand correctly, DL from MN, I mean the sum from which you re-scale to 4.00.

A good single example to illustrate how this works with multiple playoff series may be 1982 because it combines one league championship that went the distance (Milwaukee 3-2 California) with one sweep (St Louis 3-0 Atlanta).
   138. DL from MN Posted: January 31, 2009 at 03:25 PM (#3064935)
Well, there are 4 wins to take a series. If your team can only win a maximum of 4 games I assumed a player wouldn't contribute more than 4 WPA regardless of the number of games in the series.
   139. Paul Wendt Posted: January 31, 2009 at 05:08 PM (#3064964)
So the sum for all players in a series is not 4.00?
not even for a best-of-seven World Series before 1969?
   140. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: January 31, 2009 at 05:49 PM (#3064985)
No, not at all. The winning team will have a total WPA of 2.00 (4*(1-.5)) for the games that they win, and lose 0.5 (0-.5) for each game that they lose. So a sweep would have 2 WPA, a 5-game victory 1.5, a 6-game victory 1.0, and a 7-game victory 0.5. These numbers are inverted for the loser.
   141. Paul Wendt Posted: January 31, 2009 at 07:14 PM (#3065027)
Sorry, off by a factor of two. But the point is to learn the effect of "normalization" whatever that may be; maybe we already have multiple norms in this world.

In a 4-3 series, contrast a 4-0 series, the distributions of player scores (sums over all games) on both teams may be fatter. For that reason and because the team sums are closer to zero, there must be more net plus scores on the losing team and more net minus scores on the winning team; in a 4-0 series the distribution is thin with the net plus scores more concentrated on the winning team.

If we "zero out" all the negatives, re-scale the sum to 4.00 for the series, what are the distributions of aggregate credit that we give to the winning teams in 4-3 series? and to the winning teams in 4-0 series?
Annual details depend on whether the games go back and forth, the same players perform well in all games, and so on. But there may be empirical stability.

--
This doesn't yet touch upon how one combines multiple series. Again there may be multiple norms in use (or none yet in use!); there must be multiple norms conceived. Since DL has posted career sums for some players, his method of normalization is practically more important, but none is very important and it may be illuminating to read anyone's method.

(P.S. I don't know the location of wpa data at baseball-reference.)
   142. DL from MN Posted: January 31, 2009 at 09:26 PM (#3065088)
WPA data at baseball reference is on the page of the playoff games. The Pitcher WPA is accessible there. You can click through from the player page playoff section.
   143. TomH Posted: February 03, 2009 at 02:58 PM (#3066315)
Paul W - can you contact me at han60man@aol.com? I tried to email you, but the address linked to your name did not work. Thanks.

Tom
   144. Tiboreau Posted: February 04, 2009 at 08:39 AM (#3067203)
Has anyone seen the HoF/HoM candidates article by Matthew Namee at The Hardball Times, A Thousand Miles from Cooperstown?
   145. OCF Posted: February 04, 2009 at 09:19 AM (#3067207)
A quick reconstruction of the Namee article Tiboreau references: He names at each position his opinion of who the best players are who aren't HoM, aren't HoF, and don't have "too much buzz". Here are his choices, and his honorable mentions:

C: Wally Schang (Lance Parrish, Gene Tenace)
1B: Norm Cash (Ed Konetchy, Boog Powell)
2B: Larry Doyle (Junior Gilliam, Del Pratt)
3B: Sal Bando (Bob Elliott, Toby Harrah, Buddy Bell, Ron Cey)
SS: Bert Campaneris (Jim Fregosi, Dick Bartell)
LF: Frank Howard (Jose Cruz, Brian Downing, Bob Johnson)
CF: Cesar Cedeno (Willie Davis, Amos Otis)
RF: Rusty Staub (Bobby Bonds, Jack Clark, Ken Singleton)
SP: Jack Quinn (Wilbur Cooper, Babe Adams)
RP: Firpo Marberry (Dan Quisenberry, Tom Henke, Kent Tekulve, Sparky Lyle)

(Actually, he dismisses Quisenberry as "too much buzz".)

I think most of those have gotten at least some support around here. Personally, I've spent at least a little time actively pushing some of them: Doyle, Elliott, Tenace, Howard. But there are others in our high backlog that evade his notice - Reuschel, for instance.
   146. DL from MN Posted: February 04, 2009 at 05:20 PM (#3067403)
I have Schang, Cash and Cey PHoM and Quinn is close.
   147. DL from MN Posted: February 04, 2009 at 05:40 PM (#3067435)
I've gone through most of the relevant pitcher (top 75 plus HoM guys not in my top 75) and compiled playoff WPA. Negro Leaguers got zero. Anyone with negative performance got a zero. 1880s guys are a wild guess and there are some errors in the numbers (assumed the wrong number of games in the postseason) that need to be corrected. Regardless, these numbers are pretty close to the final numbers (which I will post in the yahoo group).

Pitcher WPA
Ford, Whitey 2.36
Mathewson, Christy 2.15
Ruffing, Red 2.01
Gibson, Bob 1.75
Grove, Lefty 1.58
Koufax, Sandy 1.51
Hubbell, Carl 1.44
Bridges, Tommy 1.36
Alexander, Pete 1.32
Coveleski, Stan 1.32
Palmer, Jim 1.27
Radbourn, Charley 1.20
Fingers, Rollie 1.2
Plank, Eddie 1.10
Keefe, Tim 1
Brown, Mordecai 0.96
Drysdale, Don 0.93
Nichols, Kid 0.80
McGinnity, Joe 0.78
Sutton, Don 0.71
Walters, Bucky 0.67
Johnson, Walter 0.62
Gossage, Goose 0.61
Spahn, Warren 0.60
Lemon, Bob 0.57
John, Tommy 0.57
Carlton, Steve 0.53
Tiant, Luis 0.49
Trout, Dizzy 0.48
Blyleven, Bert 0.47
Dean, Dizzy 0.46
Eckersley, Dennis 0.44
Cone, David 0.43
Young, Cy 0.41
Faber, Red 0.41
Pierce, Billy 0.35
Ryan, Nolan 0.32
Roberts, Robin 0.24
Marichal, Juan 0.22
Clarkson, John 0.2
Brown, Kevin 0.20
Seaver, Tom 0.17
Saberhagen, Bret 0.15
Stieb, Dave 0.10
Walsh, Ed 0.08
Wilhelm, Hoyt 0.06
Niekro, Phil 0.05
Trucks, Virgil 0.01
Appier, Kevin 0.01
   148. DL from MN Posted: February 04, 2009 at 05:41 PM (#3067438)
Brown, Ray 0
Bunning, Jim 0.00
Feller, Bob 0.00
Ferrell, Wes 0.00
Finley, Chuck 0.00
Foster, Bill 0
Foster, Rube 0
Galvin, Pud 0.00
Griffith, Clark 0.00
Jenkins, Ferguson 0.00
Lyons, Ted 0.00
Matlock, Leroy 0
McCormick, Jim 0.00
Mendez, Jose 0
Newhouser, Hal 0.00
Paige, Satchel 0.00
Perry, Gaylord 0.00
Redding, Dick 0.00
Reuschel, Rick 0.00
Rixey, Eppa 0.00
Rogan, Bullet 0
Rusie, Amos 0.00
Shocker, Urban 0.00
Smith, Hilton 0
Tanana, Frank 0
Vance, Dazzy 0.00
Waddell, Rube 0.00
Williams, Joe 0.00
Willis, Vic 0.00
Wynn, Early 0
   149. karlmagnus Posted: February 04, 2009 at 05:46 PM (#3067449)
DL, interesting list but where's Parisian Bob? Relevant for our pitcher rankings though not the 2010 ballot, of course.
   150. DL from MN Posted: February 04, 2009 at 06:55 PM (#3067524)
Bob falls into the WAG category, didn't work him up yet.
   151. Paul Wendt Posted: February 06, 2009 at 06:09 PM (#3069448)
147. DL from MN Posted: February 04, 2009 at 11:40 AM (#3067435)
I've gone through most of the relevant pitcher (top 75 plus HoM guys not in my top 75) and compiled playoff WPA. Negro Leaguers got zero. Anyone with negative performance got a zero. 1880s guys are a wild guess and there are some errors in the numbers (assumed the wrong number of games in the postseason) that need to be corrected. Regardless, these numbers are pretty close to the final numbers (which I will post in the yahoo group).

What sort of wild guess?
Caruthers should have some points.

125. DL from MN Posted: January 29, 2009 at 03:17 PM (#3063526)
Meanwhile if you want to add to the list it's just this:

Add up the WPA value for each series (ALDS, ALCS, WS) separately.
Divide the series WPA value by the number of games required to win a pennant (2008 would be 12) and multiply by the number of games required to win that series (3 in best of 5, 4 in best of 7).
Add all series numbers together for each pennant season.
If <0 use 0 for the value added to that pennant.
Add up all pennant series added values.


(my emphasis)
Elsewhere you have mentioned and I have asked about normalization to 4.00.
It seems to me that there is a sense in which these steps execute normalization to 1.00. The weights placed on all of the playoff rounds in one year sum to one.
   152. DL from MN Posted: February 06, 2009 at 06:41 PM (#3069502)
Yes, the weights sum to one but a world series with 7 games (4 wins) has a weighting of 1. That's what I mean by normalizing to 4 games.

For the 1880s guys I just followed the general rule of thumb that a shutout was worth about 0.6, giving up 1-2 runs was worth around 0.3, giving up 4 runs was worth 0 and more than that was progressively more negative. You have to eyeball the game too though, if you give up 5 in a 7-5 win then the pitcher typically gets no WPA while a 1-0 10 inning win is worth around 0.75. I certainly didn't calculate actual WPA for any playoff series pre-1903.
   153. DL from MN Posted: February 06, 2009 at 06:43 PM (#3069507)
As I mentioned earlier, peak voters should look to see if there is a decent playoff series for their player to figure into their peak numbers. All my numbers are "career" value numbers with a bad postseason worth the same as no postseason at all. I'll keep the weightings in the final excel file so people can adjust them if they like.
   154. HGM Posted: February 08, 2009 at 12:09 AM (#3070748)
I'll be a first time voter this coming election, so I'm just posting this early, my prelim. ballot. I know comments are required, and I'll add those in later, but just throwing this up here for now:

1) Barry Larkin
2) Robeto Alomar
3) Rick Reuschel
4) Luis Tiant
5) Tommy Leach
6) Bert Campaneris
7) Dave Concepcion
8) Phil Rizzuto
9) David Cone
10) Gavvy Cravath
11) Bobby Bonds
12) Don Newcombe
13) Johnny Pesky
14) Tommy Bridges
15) Bill Monroe

I haven't ranked Edgar Martinez yet, though, so he may find his way on to there. As I said, very preliminary.
   155. DL from MN Posted: February 08, 2009 at 07:21 PM (#3071194)
Good start, who is in the next 15?
   156. HGM Posted: February 08, 2009 at 07:47 PM (#3071208)
I haven't yet combined my position player and pitcher rankings beyond 15.
   157. HGM Posted: February 08, 2009 at 11:15 PM (#3071392)
Here are my top 20 position players:

1) Barry Larkin
2) Roberto Alomar
3) Tommy Leach
4) Bert Campaneris
5) Dave Concepcion
6) Phil Rizzuto
7) Gavvy Cravath
8) Bobby Bonds
9) Johnny Pesky
10) Bill Monroe
11) Fred Dunlap
12) Ben Taylor
13) Ron Cey
14) Bob Johnson
15) Fred McGriff
16) Norm Cash
17) Buddy Bell
18) Albert Belle
19) Hugh Duffy
20) Robin Ventura

And top 10 pitchers:

1) Rick Reuschel
2) Luis Tiant
3) David Cone
4) Don Newcombe
5) Tommy Bridges
6) Dick Redding
7) Vic Willis
8) Bucky Walters
9) Addie Joss
10) Dizzy Dean
   158. DL from MN Posted: February 09, 2009 at 03:41 AM (#3071555)
McGriff ahead of Edgar?
   159. HGM Posted: February 09, 2009 at 06:44 AM (#3071641)
The "I haven't ranked Edgar yet" remark applies to that list too. :p
   160. DL from MN Posted: March 02, 2009 at 09:47 PM (#3090542)
3 pitchers elected in our last 9 elections (Stieb, Eck, Saberhagen). Let's not make it 3 in 10 (10%).
   161. Mike Emeigh Posted: March 02, 2009 at 09:51 PM (#3090550)
There's no one on the pitchers' list who screams "pick me", really - certainly no one of the caliber of Larkin and Alomar.

-- MWE
   162. DL from MN Posted: March 02, 2009 at 10:52 PM (#3090646)
There's about 8-10 pitchers as good or better than Edgar though...
   163. OCF Posted: March 03, 2009 at 01:46 AM (#3090768)
Chone Smith (AROM) just posted a link to a part of his own site where he does evaluations of all players from 1955 through 2008. This includes defense and baserunning. I'm going to list some of what he has for the players on out 2010 ballot, along with some other interesting cases.

Three limitations:

1. I'm just going to list two of his career counting stats, RAR and WAR. He does give year-by-year breakdowns, so if you'd like to organize that by peak or prime or whatever, the details are at www.baseballprojection.com.

2. Although pitchers are listed, nothing is given for their pitching value, so it doesn't help all that much (although it could be a useful add-on to an independene measure of pitching value).

3. This only goes back to 1955, which misses quite a few candidates in our high backlog.

Here are some of the listings:

Player . .  RAR  WAR
Alomar 
. .  666  66.3
Martinez 
.  702  68.8
McGriff 
. . 511  52.9
Ventura 
. . 576  57.2
Puckett 
. . 468  47.4
R
Smith .  609  66.1
Nettles 
. . 621  64.9
Dawson 
. .  524  56.2
Raines 
. .  660  69.7
J
Rice . . 415  43.1
McGwire 
. . 640  63.9
Henderson  1118 115.3 
   164. OCF Posted: March 03, 2009 at 01:47 AM (#3090770)
Oops - I left off Larkin. RAR 684, WAR 70.3.
   165. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: March 03, 2009 at 03:33 AM (#3090828)
I suspect these will be pretty similar to my numbers before accounting for standard deviation (although he does say he is doing something with league *strength*, which I explicitly do not). I can't imagine BP's DP avoidance numbers would differ largely from his, and I use TotalZone as part of my '87-'05 fielding equations and lift his DP turning, C defense, and OF arm figures directly. Because his positional adjustments are derived using his TZ numbers (I imagine by looking at position-switchers) rather than by the actual performance of replacement players, his defensive spectrum is somewhat different from mine, above all when it comes to the SS drought of the 1970's. For those of you who don't think Concepción and Campaneris deserve credit for being so much better than their positional peers, Sean's numbers likely come closer to what you're looking for than mine do.
   166. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: March 03, 2009 at 04:15 AM (#3090862)
I can't imagine BP's DP avoidance numbers would differ largely from his,

They might, actually. I've traded emails with Sean on his DP adjustments before; he figures DP out of fielded ground balls in DP situations. The reason for that, instead of just DP/DP situations, is that ground balls that aren't DPs have far greater advancement value than flyouts or K's - enough that someone who has a league average number of DPs per ground ball in those situations will get as much total advancement from his grounders as he does from his flies/K's.

I probably explained that much worse than Sean would have... but his method is different than any I've seen. (Jim Rice is still the worst DP guy from the Retrohseet era, though!)
   167. DL from MN Posted: March 06, 2009 at 07:39 PM (#3094702)
List of best unelected players from 1955 on according to Sean:

http://www.baseballthinkfactory.org/files/newsstand/discussion/wins_above_replacement_1955_2008/

Buddy Bell 63.1
(Winfield 60.9)
Willie Davis 60.4
Sal Bando 59.9
(Will Clark 59.2)
Bobby Bonds 57.9
(Wynn 56.4)
(Dawson 56.2)
Norm Cash 54.2
Jose Cruz 53.4
Jack Clark 52.7
Cesar Cedeno 51.2
Tony Phillips 51.1
Ron Cey 50.9
Chet Lemon 50.1

The one I need to look at closer is why I have Cey over Buddy Bell. He mentions that he's not run-adjusting the defensive win values and a lot of Bell's value is on defense. A score of 55 is pretty much an in-out line unless you're a catcher.
   168. DL from MN Posted: March 06, 2009 at 07:43 PM (#3094714)
> There's no one on the pitchers' list who screams "pick me", really - certainly no one of the caliber of Larkin and Alomar.

Well, those two are new to the ballot. There's nobody on the hitters list that really screams "pick me" if you look at the holdovers.
   169. DL from MN Posted: March 06, 2009 at 07:49 PM (#3094724)
Let's look at those guys above the cutoff:

Player Name Sean DanR
Buddy Bell 63.1 55.7
Willie Davis 60.4 46.3
Sal Bando 59.9 45.2
Bobby Bonds 57.9 54.0
   170. jimd Posted: March 09, 2009 at 06:40 PM (#3096906)
How does WPA assign reponsibility on defense? Pitching/fielding split, etc?
   171. Wes Parkers Mood (Mike Green) Posted: March 10, 2009 at 01:06 AM (#3097350)
Buddy Bell? Now that you think about it, it makes sense. Long career. Good hitter, great fielder, good baserunner. I guess he's the Reuschel of position players.

Willie Davis and Bobby Bonds do need to be mulled.
   172. DL from MN Posted: March 13, 2009 at 12:56 AM (#3101641)
Sean and DanR are probably in disagreement about replacement value at 3B. I don't get Willie Davis at all.
   173. Wes Parkers Mood (Mike Green) Posted: March 13, 2009 at 01:28 AM (#3101669)
Sean has Davis at 64 RAA for his career batting, 65 RAA for baserunning, 41 RAA for lack of GIDP, and 103 RAA for defence (TZ). Sean negatively adjusts Davis for position (-18 for his career). The batting figure looks perfect, and the baserunning figure makes sense. I suspect that the issue may be defence. Compare him with Andre Dawson, for instance. Dawson was the better hitter, and was a fine defensive centerfielder before he hurt his knees, but TZ has him as below average defensive right-fielder for many years. Davis was, according to TZ, a good defensive centerfielder well into his 30s. That is perfectly consistent with other evidence that he maintained his speed exceptionally well (stolen base frequency and efficiency, triple to double rate...).

Incidentally Bell is at 61.8.
   174. Paul Wendt Posted: March 13, 2009 at 01:44 PM (#3102014)
170. jimd Posted: March 09, 2009 at 02:40 PM (#3096906)
How does WPA assign responsibility on defense? Pitching/fielding split, etc?

The implementation by Baseball-Reference assigns 100% to the pitcher and 100% to the batter, nothing to any fielder or baserunner.

Example, 1903 World Series, game 1

Third on the list of "Top Plays": Bransfield steals second, Wagner scoring and Bransfield taking third.
Batter Ritchey and pitcher Young score +8% and -8%.

Explanation, Win Probability Added (wpa) Stats
   175. Chris Cobb Posted: March 15, 2009 at 06:24 PM (#3103692)
I've been looking at the new BP WARP1 numbers for pitchers, and I have put together some data that others who use WARP1 in their pitcher evaluations might find useful. It's a chart that shows the relative change in a pitcher's PRAA from the previous instantiation of WARP1 to the new WARP1. I have compiled these numbers for all of the major-league pitchers who received a vote in the 2009 election.

Pitcher  PRAA change
Reuschel  
-97
Finley
..  -72
Trout
...  -60
Welch
...  -56
Quinn
...  -50
Cooper
..  -40
Gooden
..  -39
Cicotte
.  -32
Dean
....  -18
Newcombe  
-15
Shocker
..  -9
Willis
...  -8
Kaat
.....  -4
Phillippe  
-2
Leever
....  6
Bridges
...  7
Appier
...  10
Cone
.....  10
Grimes
...  14
John
.....  16
Leonard
..  18
Tiant
....  19
Walters
..  21
Morris
...  21
Tanana
...  26
Mays
.....  34
Adams
....  40
Joss
.....  43
Hough
....  74
Gomez
....  79 


A few quick comments:

Although some of these changes are large, few will have a major impact on my ballot. Lefty Gomez and Charlie Hough make big gains, yes, but they were so far down in my rankings that they still remain far from my ballot.

Of the biggest losers in the new WARP1, Reuschel is the only pitcher on my ballot strongly affected. It looks like he will drop from the #2 spot to a place just off ballot: i.e. he goes from a very solid candidate to a borderline candidate. I'm comfortable with that, as it was hard to see from slightly rawer numbers how Reuschel could have been _that_ good. Cooper, Quinn, Welch, and Trout all drop from being close to the ballot to being not close to the ballot.

Of other pitchers on or near my ballot, Tiant and John solidify their ballot spots, Grimes jumps from off-ballot to on-ballot, Shocker slips slightly in his ballot placement. Walters gets closer to the ballot--he might possibly get his first vote from me this year. The biggest winner in this group relative to the ballot, however, is Addie Joss, who goes from not close to the ballot to right on the cusp of a ballot spot. Mays and Leonard are also closing in on ballot spots as well. Walters and Joss may well go into the PHOM.

I am still working on numbers for eligible pitchers who did not receive any votes: the biggest gainer so far is Eddie Rommel, who gains 58 PRAA, which puts him into contention for a ballot spot in my system.

I have only run the numbers for a few HoM pitchers, just some of ones who were in the bottom tier of the HoM as my system saw it. These have all been gainers so far, which speaks well both of the HoM's judgment and this round of revisions to WARP1.

Lemon +9
Pierce +13
Koufax +20 (yes he is low in my system b/c he has so little career value)
Stieb +36
Sutton +65

I'll be looking at the pitchers in the ranking pool current under discussion (1893- whatever the end date is) over the course of the next week.
   176. Howie Menckel Posted: March 15, 2009 at 08:44 PM (#3103799)
"Reuschel is the only pitcher on my ballot strongly affected. It looks like he will drop from the #2 spot to a place just off ballot: i.e. he goes from a very solid candidate to a borderline candidate. I'm comfortable with that, as it was hard to see from slightly rawer numbers how Reuschel could have been _that_ good."

That's a fascinating comment there.

I never voted for Reuschel because I never believed he "could have been_that_good" either.
And so it goes with a lot of the newer SABRmetric tweaks - they're intriguing and promising, but they can produce bad results.

Yet "my way" means that if it turns out that Reuschel really WAS that good (and who knows what future research advances show), I'm going to be late to figuring out, at best. So I'm not necessarily at an advantage with this approach.

Doesn't seem like a bad thing that we get such a large mix of approaches, I guess I'm saying.
   177. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 16, 2009 at 02:14 AM (#3104141)
WARP adjusted their numbers again? Wow. When was the last time that happened? Last week? ;-)
   178. Chris Cobb Posted: March 16, 2009 at 02:55 AM (#3104205)
We're used to WARP changing frequently by now, but this change was the largest in years--replacement level was altered, the approach to xip appears to have been changed (unfortunately it now has a greater role--in my view they would do better to discard this stat), and they have certainly made some significant adjustments in how they either a) assess fielding value or b) determine the split in responsibility between pitchers and fielders on a team by team basis.

On this latter point, the changes appear to me to move the system in the right direction. Most of the pitchers whose value was A LOT higher in WARP1 than one would intuitively expect--for example Reuschel and Blyleven and Dizzy Trout--have taken significant hits (Bert is still far above the in-out line, of course, but he no longer appears comparable in quality to, say, Bob Gibson). Contrariwise, pitchers whose reputations were far stronger than their WARP1 numbers--for example Warren Spahn and Carl Hubbell--have gotten significant boosts. So I am inclined to think that the new numbers are probably an improvement, at least for post-1920 pitchers. Earlier than that, it's very hard to judge whether they have a good read on the game.

The change in replacement level was also desperately needed, but I haven't studied enough examples to have a good sense of just where the new replacement level is, relative to something like reality.
   179. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 16, 2009 at 12:54 PM (#3104417)
I think the main point here is that we can't blindly follow any analytical system like a bunch of lemmings. If the numbers don't smell right to you, just don't ignore your wariness.
   180. DL from MN Posted: March 16, 2009 at 01:56 PM (#3104466)
Change in replacement value should affect PRAR, not PRAA, correct? It shouldn't be that hard to calculate the average and I don't know why they would need to recalculate it.
   181. Chris Cobb Posted: March 16, 2009 at 03:57 PM (#3104629)
Change in replacement value should affect PRAR, not PRAA, correct? It shouldn't be that hard to calculate the average and I don't know why they would need to recalculate it.

Yes. The changes I have documented do not show any of the changes in replacement level. It is easy to see that those changes have been made by looking at players' WARP1 totals (Barry Bonds is now down well below 200 WARP1, when he used to be at 240 or something like that), but I don't know the basis of these systemic changes.

The changes in PRAA clearly have to do with the re-assessment of pitchers' fielding support, though it could also be tied to changes in the calculation of pitchers' xIP, which may be receiving a larger role in establishing the pitching/fielding split for each individual pitcher. I imagine this year's print _Prospectus_ actually explains the changes.

Since I didn't keep records of xIP (which I view as a junk stat), only PRAA, I don't have sufficient data to assess the role of xIP, if any, in the changes to PRAA.
   182. HGM Posted: March 16, 2009 at 08:16 PM (#3104950)
I imagine this year's print _Prospectus_ actually explains the changes.

I mostly skimmed through it, but the book pretty much just explains the new PBP fielding metric, and that they raised replacement level.
   183. DL from MN Posted: March 16, 2009 at 09:47 PM (#3105007)
Did they raise it to the commonly accepted level or not quite?
   184. HGM Posted: March 16, 2009 at 11:27 PM (#3105066)
They defined it as 22.11 runs below average per 486 outs on offense, and an average fielder...which I'm pretty sure is roughly the commonly accepted level of 2 wins below average.
   185. Paul Wendt Posted: March 19, 2009 at 04:26 AM (#3108098)
Since I didn't keep records of xIP (which I view as a junk stat), only PRAA, I don't have sufficient data to assess the role of xIP, if any, in the changes to PRAA.

The data table that I have posted a few times includes four of the volatile statistics
-- XIP, RAA, PRAA, DERA but not PRAR --
for more than 600 pitchers.
Maybe I can do something with that --collect new values of the same variables during the remainder of this month, whenever I feel the need for such therapy [whoa, maybe I'll have it done by Saturday noon].

Certainly the burden of showing that Charley Radbourn was a mediocre pitcher has shifted from DERA to XIP. Formerly he was a guy with DERA above four in 4500 innings. Now he is a guy with DERA in the low threes but only 1700 innings.
   186. Paul Wendt Posted: March 19, 2009 at 04:45 AM (#3108112)
Since I didn't keep records of xIP (which I view as a junk stat), only PRAA, I don't have sufficient data to assess the role of xIP, if any, in the changes to PRAA.

The data table that I have posted a few times includes four of the volatile statistics
-- XIP, RAA, PRAA, DERA but not PRAR --
for more than 600 pitchers.
Maybe I can do something with that --collect new values of the same variables during the remainder of this month, whenever I feel the need for such therapy [whoa, maybe I'll have it done by Saturday noon].

Certainly the burden of showing that Charley Radbourn was a mediocre pitcher has shifted from DERA to XIP. Formerly he was a guy with DERA above four in 4500 innings. Now he is a guy with DERA in the low threes but only 1700 innings.
   187. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: May 10, 2009 at 06:20 PM (#3173168)
bump
   188. DL from MN Posted: May 14, 2009 at 06:29 PM (#3179038)
Most recent prelim ballot: After the WPA additions and update to WARP

1) Barry Larkin - by a mile
2) Tommy Bridges - still looks good in WARP, great post-season work
3) David Cone
4) Tommy Leach
5) Bob Johnson
6) Luis Tiant
7) Urban Shocker
8) Roberto Alomar
9) Ben Taylor
10) Bus Clarkson
11) Norm Cash
12) Gavy Cravath
13) Wally Schang
14) Dick Redding
15) Ron Cey
16-20) Edgar Martinez, Rick Reuschel, Lave Cross, Jim McCormick, Johnny Pesky
21-25) Dom DiMaggio, Phil Rizzuto, Dizzy Dean, Kevin Appier, Babe Adams
26-30) Tony Mullane, Bobby Bonds, Bob Elliott, Robin Ventura, Kiki Cuyler

Reuschel drops out of the top 15. No postseason bonus. New WARP hates him and though it's only part of my calculation it's enough to knock him off ballot and Dick Redding on. Top 19 are PHoM except Edgar (not on ballot long enough) and Lave Cross (haven't scraped that far down yet).
   189. Bleed the Freak Posted: May 15, 2009 at 03:17 AM (#3179861)
Reuschel drops out of the top 15. No postseason bonus. New WARP hates him and though it's only part of my calculation it's enough to knock him off ballot

Hey DL, are you using WARP1. What was the split between the old numbers (favorable) and the new edition (unfavorable) of WARP.

For those that use DERA, Reuschel remains the same for career at 3.79.
   190. DL from MN Posted: May 15, 2009 at 01:31 PM (#3180192)
Yes, WARP1. They changed the replacement level, which didn't allow me to draw a direct comparison without normalizing the numbers. I deleted the old numbers so I actually can't tell you.
   191. Paul Wendt Posted: May 15, 2009 at 07:53 PM (#3180742)
For Rick Reuschel i do have PRAR as well as PRAA

XIP RAA PRAA PRAR DERA
3470 201 273 1063 3.79 ; 2008
3490 198 274 _759 3.79 ; spring 2009
   192. DL from MN Posted: May 15, 2009 at 09:16 PM (#3180846)
And of course those numbers aren't anywhere near the numbers I have. That would put him around 8th after Shocker. @$#!%!@# WARP1. I'll have to redo the whole spreadsheet again before I put in the real ballot.
   193. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: May 15, 2009 at 10:13 PM (#3180891)
WARP will do that to you, DL. :-)
   194. DL from MN Posted: September 11, 2009 at 03:53 PM (#3319686)
I just doublechecked to make sure I don't have to redo my redo:

PHOM - Larkin, Alomar, Joe McGinnity (thanks ranking project!)

1) Barry Larkin - Ends up basically tied with Ozzie Smith in the spreadsheet. Best NL SS of that era is an argument that could go on for years.
2) David Cone - Helped by good postseason numbers, strike credit, etc. Quality pitcher and IP compare favorably to others in his era.
3) Tommy Bridges - Deserves war credit, terrific strikeout pitcher with IP being the only knock against him. Fantastic performer in the postseason.
4) Luis Tiant - Yes he's behind a bunch of other pitchers from his era but he's legitimately qualified.
5) Tommy Leach - Great glove to go with the bat and good positional bump for playing CF and 3B
6) Urban Shocker - gets WWI credit and had a good bat that can't be ignored when calculating his value
7) Bob Johnson - I've been voting for him since my 1st ballot
8) Roberto Alomar - Adjusting up over what the numbers tell me because it's really close the next 10 ballot slots and I believe the replacement value for his era was a little high historically.
9) Kevin Appier - Will be competing for my PHoM in 2012 against Alejandro Oms, no shot in 2011
10) Ben Taylor - Fits with the good glove, enough bat 1B we've elected (Hernandez, Beckley)
11) Bus Clarkson - haven't lost him in the shuffle. A mostly-credit case but he could hit and play infield.
12) Norm Cash - another good glove first baseman, that monster year puts him over the line
13) Rick Reuschel - takes a hit from my rankings last year but stays on-ballot
14) Gavy Cravath - Needs the minor league credit and relied quite a bit on oddball ballparks but he put up the numbers
15) Dick Redding - Gets the nod at the end of the ballot. Imagine if Dwight Gooden hadn't fallen off the cliff so early.

16-20) Wally Schang (PHoM), Ron Cey (PHoM), Edgar Martinez, Lave Cross, Johnny Pesky
21-25) Dom DiMaggio, Tony Mullane, Phil Rizzuto, Dizzy Dean, Bobby Bonds
26-30) Bob Elliott, Robin Ventura, Kiki Cuyler, Buddy Bell, Jose Cruz

41) Bucky Walters
   195. OCF Posted: September 11, 2009 at 04:59 PM (#3319733)
Best NL SS of that era is an argument that could go on for years.

I'm not completely sure what you mean by "that era." Smith and Larkin did not peak simultaneously. At Ozzie's best, say 1983-1987, Larkin wasn't in the league. During that time, Ozzie was unquestionably the best in the NL (for best in baseball, you have to compare to Trammell and Ripken, and in the early part of that, Yount before he moved to CF.) In around 1988 or 1989, Larkin passed Ozzie and became the best in the NL - and the best SS in baseball, except for Ripken's out-of-trend-line MVP year. After that, Ozzie was still a good player, but it was Larkin's time.

So I don't really see Smith and Larkin as direct competitors for the kind of recognition you're talking about - Larkin succeeded Smith. (Ozzie's enormous popularity did cause him to continue to be elected to the All Star team after that position should have become Larkin's.)

To be specific, Larkin did enter the majors in 1986, but he didn't become the kind of player that makes him an HoM candidate until 1988.

Of course, if the issue is "should Larkin be #1 on a 2010 HoM ballot" - well, sure. That's where I'm going to put him.
   196. DL from MN Posted: September 11, 2009 at 07:08 PM (#3319886)
Good point, they both get that title.
   197. DL from MN Posted: September 15, 2009 at 04:59 PM (#3322325)
All-time ranks in my spreadsheet:

1) Barry Larkin - 8th among SS between Appling and Smith. Willie Wells is close also.
2) David Cone - 43rd among pitchers, Bridges is 44th. Gossage, Drysdale, Marichal, Saberhagen and Mendez are in this same area.
3) Tommy Bridges - 44th
4) Luis Tiant - 48th among pitchers. Bunning, Stieb, Ruffing, Pud Galvin are similar.
5) Tommy Leach - Among CF he's 15th in the same area as Reggie Smith. Among 3B he's 18th behind McGraw, Collins and ahead of Nettles.
6) Urban Shocker - 55th among pitchers. Behind Ferrell and Koufax and ahead of Waddell and Pierce.
7) Bob Johnson - 16th among LF behind Stargell and ahead of Charley Jones, Sherry Magee, Charlie Keller, Goose Goslin and Minnie Minoso
8) Roberto Alomar - 17th among 2B around Doerr, Gordon, Herman and Frank Grant. Clearly behind Whitaker and Sandberg.
9) Kevin Appier - 58th pitcher between Waddell and Pierce, still doubting the numbers though
10) Ben Taylor - 18th at 1B behind Beckley and Hernandez but ahead of Will Clark.
11) Bus Clarkson - 25th at SS behind the comparable SS/3B Joe Sewell.
12) Norm Cash - 19th/20th just before or after Clark depending on which direction the wind is blowing that day
13) Rick Reuschel - 58th pitcher, ahead of Clark Griffith and tied with Pierce
14) Gavy Cravath - Would be at the bottom of the RF list but nearly tied with Sam Thompson
15) Dick Redding - 61st after Griffith but ahead of Don Sutton, Eppa Rixey and Mordecai Brown

16) Wally Schang (PHoM) last C behind Mackey
17) Ron Cey (PHoM) last 3B behind Boyer

Joe McGinnity is going to have to wait a while because I'm still picking Alejandro Oms this year.
   198. DL from MN Posted: September 16, 2009 at 01:35 PM (#3323302)
Open request to Dan R - my copy of your WARP is only complete until 2005. That will be inadequate for voting after this election.
   199. Paul Wendt Posted: September 16, 2009 at 09:58 PM (#3323970)
Joe Dimino suggested the two weeks 11/29-12/13 for the 2010 balloting. It's reasonable.

Last year the election of Joe Gordon to Cooperstown "today" was announced Monday, December 8. Proximity in time moves to me ask whether the annual election to the Hall of Merit should close before the baseball Winter Meetings --this year, December 7-11. Alternatively, it's possible that the Winter Meetings should occur during the time period for this election. Presumably that may be because interest in the Hall of Fame stimulated by the Meetings may be valuable here.

I understand that the Meetings' annual event regarding HOF players is merely announcement of the results of the living Hall of Famers vote by mail. The Veterans Committee meetings during the Winter Meetings cover managers and umpires this year, executives in some other years, and pre-1942 players supposedly every five years.
   200. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: September 17, 2009 at 12:25 PM (#3324490)
Paul, I'm definitely fine with moving our election back to have everyone announced here before real life.

If you want to suggest new dates, that's fine - I was mainly trying to avoid having key times over Thanksgiving week . . .
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