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Wednesday, December 07, 2011

2012 Hall of Merit Ballot

Sorry about not getting this posted Monday. I was having issues with the thread-creation website.

The election will end December


28. We’ve extend the deadline in hopes of landing a few extra ballots. Don’t count on this next year :-) Apologies to those who rushed to meet the deadline.

Joe posted this last year, but it won’t hurt to include it here again:

This was an issue last year, so I’ll repeat it now for clarification . . . the posting of the ballot to the discussion thread for new voters is not just a formality. With the posting of the ballot you are expected to post a summary of what you take into account - basically, how did you come up with this list? This does not mean that you need to have invented the Holy Grail of uber-stats. You don’t need a numerical rating down to the hundredth decimal point. You do need to treat all eras of baseball history fairly. You do need to stick to what happened on the field (or what would have happened if wars and strikes and such hadn’t gotten in the way). You may be challenged and ask to defend your position, if someone notices internal inconsistencies, flaws in your logic, etc.. This is all a part of the learning process.

It isn’t an easy thing to submit a ballot, but that’s by design. Not because we don’t want to grow our numbers (though we’ve done just fine there, started with 29 voters in 1898, and passed 50 eventually), not because we want to shut out other voices. It’s because we want informed voters making informed decisions on the entire electorate, not just the players they remember.

So if you are up for this, we’d love to have you! Even if you aren’t up to voting, we’d still appreciate your thoughts in the discussion. Some of our greatest contributors haven’t or have only rarely voted.

Back to your regularly scheduled programming . . .


Voters should name 15 players, in order. Thanks!

Newcomers on the 2012 ballot.

2012 (November 28, 2011)—elect 3
WS W3 Rookie Name-Pos

311 57.3 1991 Bernie Williams-CF
232 44.2 1993 Tim Salmon-RF
194 39.5 1994 Javy Lopez-C
211 31.3 1995 Edgardo Alfonzo-3B/2B
157 45.4 1995 Brad Radke-P
222 14.5 1986 Ruben Sierra-RF
166 23.0 1992 Brian Jordan-RF
170 13.0 1993 J.T. Snow-1B*
166 14.4 1993 Jeromy Burnitz-RF
162 17.1 1992 Eric Young-2B
126 30.5 1991 Jeff Fassero-P
120 30.8 1990 Scott Erickson-P
140 23.2 1996 Bill Mueller-3B
143 20.5 1995 Phil Nevin-3B/1B
153 11.9 1993 Vinny Castilla-3B
148 12.9 1995 Carl Everett-CF/RF
142 13.7 1996 Matt Lawton-RF/LF
121 26.0 1999 Corey Koskie-3B
100 24.0 1992 Pedro Astacio-P
135 12.2 1996 Joe Randa-3B
125 13.9 1991 Jose Vizcaino-SS/2B

Thanks, Dan!

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 07, 2011 at 09:17 PM | 192 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. bjhanke Posted: December 21, 2011 at 08:18 PM (#4021342)
Others Requiring Comments, in no particular order, in a separate post because of post-length limits, along with guys who do not require comments, but I made them anyway.

Dick Redding
Last year, I found disagreement about what Dick's stats really were in any given season. This time, there seems to be more consensus about that, but I can't find the huge strikeout numbers that one source had for him last year, on Wikipedia, if I remember. That one source had huge strikeout numbers; the only ones I can find now do not justify comparing him to Rube Waddell or Smokey Joe Williams or (gimme a break) Walter Johnson. It's clear he threw hard, but how hard is not clear.

In general, a lot more Redding stats seem to have come forward in the last year, but the issue does not seem to have settled down as to what he actually did and when and where. Until that does settle down, I'm going with what I have, which is no vote for Dick until I am more sure.

Gavy Cravath
As with many of the guys who have been discussed for years, I find myself with nothing really new to say. My opinion is that the major leagues were right. Gavy's defense was so lousy that not even his bat, except for his absolute peak, was enough to keep him in the majors. It's worth remembering that, in Gavy's time (as with Buzz Arlett), you could not stash a lousy glove at first base, like happened to Dick Stuart, for example. In Gavy's time, there was still a lot of bunting going on, and first was not the glove hole we think of it as now. In Stuart's time, Gavy might have had a career as a 1B. Now, he would have a career as a DH. This causes me to downgrade bad glove 1B and all DH, not vote for Gavy. Your opinion, of course, may disagree, and I'm not going to get worked up over that. If everyone here had the same opinions, this would be one boring exercise.

Phil Rizzuto
BB-Ref's new snapshot system, where you can select a range of seasons and get totals, paid off for me. Phil Rizzuto, in his entire career, had an OPS+ of 93, in 1661 games played. Rabbit Maranville had 1622 games played, with an OPS+ of 92, which is pretty similar (1913-1922). But, then, there are the remaining 1009 games that Rabbit played. Phil does get three years of war credit, but Rabbit gets one back for 1918, and perhaps a minor league credit season for 1927. The credit difference just ain't gonna make up the difference in games played. Everyone I know of agrees that Rabbit was the better glove, by a serious margin. So I vote for Rabbit and I don't vote for Phil. Rabbit's career INCLUDES Phil's, with 6-8 more full seasons added on.

David Cone
Let's compare David Cone to Sam Leever, who just departed my ballot. That ought to get me into my fair share of trouble. Here are the simple numbers:

Name IP ERA+
Cone 2899 121
Leever 2660 123

Not much difference there. Over at BB-Ref:

Cone has 19 points of black ink; Leever has 21
Cone has 168 points of grey ink; Leever has 128
Cone has 103 points on the Hall of Fame monitor; Leever has 97
Cone has 39 points of Hall of Fame Standards; Leever has 46

Small advantage to Cone, all in grey ink. It's worth noting that David's best season, where a lot of his ink comes from, was the strike season of 1994, where he only pitched 23 games. As a single season, a pennant is a pennant. Folded into a career, this is David's best season and it suffers from a workload discount.

Leever got into only one World Series and was bad. Deacon Phillippe pitched 5 games and went 3-2; Sam pitched the other two and went 0-2, with a 5.40 ERA, losing the series. In his defense, he had been worked hard to get the Pirates there. He'd gone 25-7, with a 2.06 ERA, good for an ERA+ of 157. Both the ERA and ERA+ led the league, as did the winning percentage. He was burned out by the time of the WS.

Cone got into lots of postseasons and was generally poor, though not nearly as bad as Leever. In Cone's defense, he did pitch well in, specifically, the World Series. Like Leever, he was always the #2 or #3 starter on his WS teams. He was in 5 WS, but in the last one he was just a bulk guy playing out the string. In the 4 he actually was a starter for, he only started 5 games. That is, he wasn't really a "staff ace on loan." He was more a "#2 starter on loan." Hell of a #2 starter, I will readily admit.

One advantage for Leever was that he only took 13 seasons to pile up his stats, while Cone took 17. I have that as a serious advantage for Leever. You could count on him to carry a large load. Every year except one from 1899 to 1907, he pitched over 200 innings, and only in 1899 itself, when Fred Clarke found out he could not handle 379 IP (led the league), did he lose more games than he won (21-23).

I want that consistency. I still have Leever over Cone, although both are now off my ballot.

Walters, Bucky
Again, I don't think I can improve upon last year's comment: Another Wilbur Cooper type. Among the group, Walters has a high rate and a low length, but both are within the parameters of the group, as opposed to real high rate / low length guys. Bucky hit well for a pitcher, of course, but there's no real value to be added by considering his play at third. He was moved to pitcher because he was hitting like one. A very good fielder for a pitcher. The added hitting and defense means that I won't criticize anyone who has him higher than I do.

Rafael Palmeiro
I just deleted three long paragraphs comparing Raffy to Lou Brock. They were opinionated overkill. Here's the short version of why I don't vote for Raffy: I don't see anything here except a bat and a long career, the length of which is dependent on the DH rule. If the bat were better, or if I could find a peak or prime, or any extras, I'd vote for him. But literally all I can find are the bat, the career length, and the DH. I can find 15 guys who are not in the HoM who have more to offer.

Will White
I know I don't have to comment on Will White, but after advocating for him for several years, I thought I ought to explain why he's off my ballot this year. Essentially, what happened was that Dan explained the biggest problem that Joe Dimino had pointed out last year, which is why Will's fine ERA+ doesn't translate into anything more than replacement rate WAR.

The answer turns out to be unearned runs. WAR starts analyzing UER, according to Dan, who ought to know, by assigning them to the pitcher and then adjusting for fielding. I've never seen another system that does that. I, personally, don't agree with it. But it's part of my approach here to take into account anything that is defensible, even if I think it's likely wrong. The WAR position is defensible. And it does turn out that Will White's best pitching performances were undercut by very large numbers of unearned runs.

Remember that we're dealing here with a group of candidates that are very tightly clustered together in value. The better guys are already in the Hall, while anyone noticeably worse doesn't get discussed. I could probably defend almost any ballot cast here, even if it bears almost no resemblance to mine. What seems like a small difference - who you primarily blame for UER - is more than enough to move someone several places. Several places takes Will from #12 to below #15. Happens all the time.
   102. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 21, 2011 at 08:26 PM (#4021351)
Can I assume you're posting the required disclosures in another entry?

Actually, I forgot that bit of tedium:

Redding, Tiant, Cone, Reuschel and Rizzuto all exist in my top-40, but they just fall short. Of that five, I like Redding and Cone the best.
   103. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 21, 2011 at 08:33 PM (#4021358)
Voters have had a YEAR to make up their ballots. There is only one new candidate worth reviewing. There is really no excuse for waiting until the last minute.

I agree, but the integrity of the project is still more important. The fewer the votes, the less value the results have for us, IMO.
   104. Gerald Bostock Posted: December 21, 2011 at 09:23 PM (#4021415)
What time is the ballot closing? I started typing it up in between jobs, but haven't finished.
   105. bjhanke Posted: December 21, 2011 at 09:42 PM (#4021433)
fra -

I asked this several comments ago. John said 8pm tonight, Dec. 21. Good Luck! - Brock
   106. Patrick W Posted: December 21, 2011 at 09:53 PM (#4021442)
How embarrassing, copy editing fails me yet again. Please disregard Post #89 and replace with the following. But Tanana was awfully good; on this ballot, he’s really close to being worthy of 2 votes. Take another look on your ballots. pkw

Even as a proponent of a larger (more inclusive) Hall, I gotta say I’m looking forward to the Class of 2013. Bernie Williams seems to me a very questionable selection, worthy of a decade or more of consideration (like Charlie Keller or Minoso). Amongst this list of players, he is only just missing the P-Hall and will be enshrined at the next backlog opportunity. Going forward, I‘m inclined to support a cap on the induction cycle at 3 per year max.

There was a strong rookie class last year, so the P-Hall is playing catch-up with that group.

1. Rick Reuschel (2), Chic. – S.F. (N) SP (’72-’90) (1996) – This list has a bunch of pitchers who pitched a long time at average or better. This may not be your cup of tea, but value is value in my system. My peak adjustments don’t vault anyone above these career guys – or rather, the guys who do vault above have already been elected.
2. Rafael Palmeiro (4), Tex. – Balt. (A), 1B (’87-’05) (2012) – Kinda happy to see a stats-accumulator-type not just waltz in first ballot. No real outstanding seasons on the resume.
3. Ron Cey (5), L.A. (N), 3B (’73-’87) (2010) – His 3-Yr and 5-Yr peak rates are HOM-worthy (in the top 250 all time), and 10-Yr rate is upper-half HOM level. He’s not Darrell Evans, who sailed in as a rookie in 1995, but he could’ve been with a few more productive years.
4. Frank Tanana (6), Cal. – Detr. (A) SP (’73-’93) (2000) – Koufax peak, plus 10 additional years of average / below avg.
5. Bucky Walters (7),Cinc. – Phila. (N) SP (’33-’47) (1961) – He’s just as good as Leonard, Trout, Koosman and Lolich.
6. Luis Tiant (8), Bost. – Clev. (A) SP (’64-’80) (1988) – Right there with Drysdale, Ford and Marichal. Not a slam dunk, but the ballot’s not strong enough to hold him down.
7. John Olerud (9), Tor. (A), 1B (’90-’05) (2012) – I can’t really separate Olerud and Larry Walker here. Olerud has a 0.300 EQA in 9,000 PA’s, versus Walker at 0.303 in 8,000 PA. This is the quality of player in the top 300 ever; now that we’re in the era where I’ve seen these players’ careers, I need to adjust my expectations of future Hall members to know this is where the baseline occurs.
8. Tony Perez (10), Cinc. (N), 1B / 3B (’65-’86) (1994) – There’s just no peak-worthiness left in the backlog. The career candidates are all hanging out here waiting to get in. I’m guessing the players from the ‘I remember watching him play’ era are being hurt by this distinction, relative to the guys from 100 years ago who are pretty much a name and stat line to us collectively.
9. Tommy John (11), Chic.– N.Y. (A) SP (’63-’89) (1997) – Average for a quarter century is just a different definition of greatness.
--. Larry Walker, Col. – Mont. (N), RF (’90-’05) (2012)
10. Phil Rizzuto (13), N.Y. (A), SS (’41-’56) (1972) – Joe Gordon and Bobby Doerr were prominent members of my ballot in the past. Rizzuto is of this ilk, but slightly less.
11. Bernie Williams (n/a), N.Y. (A), CF (’91-’06) –Doesn’t have the long career for the career voters, nor the great MVP seasons for the peak voters. I could see him getting elected without anyone pushing for it. He was just a very good player at an important defensive position for just long enough to be considered. As said above, a borderline case.
12. David Cone (14), N.Y. (N) – N.Y. (A) SP (’87-’01) (2008) – His 10-year prime ranks in the top half of HOMers.
13. George Van Haltren (15), N.Y. (N), CF / LF (’87-’03) (1926) – Long a personal favorite, he would be a HOMer if past election results were static. To just pick a year at random, in 1934 VH finished higher in the results than 8 players currently enshrined.
14. Charlie Hough (--), L.A. (N) – Tex. (A) SP (’70-’94) (2004) – Dutch Leonard clone.
15. Lee Smith (--), Chic. – St.L. (N) RP (’81-’97) (2003) – I’m going back and forth on the coming era of closers. Right now, I think I’m okay with voting in the closers with a substantial career length; I do want to be fair to the era they played in. But Smith’s not even close to 2,000 IP and I’m guessing the next gen of RP’s is coming in under Smith’s total. I guess I’ll need to review my leverage multiplier soon to ensure I vote for the worthy, but only the worthy.

Dick Redding – The bar for NeL pitchers has been set higher than this, IMO. The jump from Ray Brown to Bill Foster, Mendez and Redding will keep them all out of my Hall.
Hugh Duffy – I have Van Haltren, Ryan and Griffin ranked ahead of Duffy from the OF of that era. VH, at the top of that pecking order, is only making the bottom range of the ballot.

Redding and Duffy were in last year’s top ten, but not in my top 15 this year.
   107. dan b Posted: December 21, 2011 at 09:58 PM (#4021445)
My 114th ballot. I start with a half peak/half career WS system with tendency to favor peak. I am also influenced by NHBA rankings. Whereas James looked at 3 best years and 5 consecutive years, I also look at 8 best years and 10 consecutive years. I look for hitters who would be above the median of already enshrined HoMers and pitchers with strong peaks.

PHoM 2012 – Tiant, Bonds and a player to be named later.

1. Walters PHoM 1968. Nice peak – 3 WS Cy Youngs, 1 runner up. One more big year than Dean.
2. Dean PHoM 1976. 1975 reevaluation of great pitching peaks put him on my ballot for the first time. 2 WS Cy Youngs, 1 runner up. Pitchers from the period 1934-1947 are under represented. Dean and Walters would help bring balance. NHBA #25 pitcher.
3. Rizzuto PHoM 1995. 1993 reevaluation moved him up. NHBA #16.
4. Mays, C PHoM 1997. His era could also use another pitcher. A quality pitcher we are overlooking. WS comparison with 1938 inductee Stan Coveleski shows them to be nearly identical in value. Ten best seasons:
Carl 35-31-30-27-25-22-20-20-17-11;
Stan 35-32-30-29-25-23-22-16-16-12.
Similarity scores agree. NHBA #38.
5. Cravath PHoM 1967. With mle credit Gavvy is above the HoM median using 5 consecutive seasons, 10 consecutive seasons, 3 best and 8 best seasons.
6. Murphy PHoM 2002. 4 consecutive seasons with 30+ WS. Above the HoM median for 5 consecutive years.
7. Duffy PHoM 1912. Compared with the median level of already enshrined HoMers using WS, Duffy would be in the top half using 5 consecutive seasons, 10 consecutive seasons, 3 best and 8 best seasons. If WS overrate him, then so do I.
8. Singleton PHoM 1997. Not many players on ballot with 3-32+ and 6-27+ WS seasons. Above HoM median for best 5 consecutive seasons.
9. Palmeiro PHoM 2010. By the metrics I use, looks similar to Winfield. Not much peak, enough career to be above the HoM median.
10. Cone PHoM 2009. Will we have fewer pitchers from the 90’s than from the 50’s when there were roughly half as many teams? I would put the in/out line for pitchers of the 90’s here.
11. Grimes PHoM 2009. Change in the way I evaluate pitching finds one I had previously underrated. 4 big years. By WS, his 4th best year is better than the 4th best year turned in by Grove, Hubbell, and Plank. The 8 year period from 1917-1924 is under represented by MLB pitchers. Mays and Grimes would fix that.
12. Newcombe PHoM 1998. Unlike the pitchers I have placed higher, his era is well represented, but compares favorably to some of his already enshrined peers.
13. Tiant PHoM 2012. NHBA #52.
14. Leach - PHoM 1926. On or nearly on my ballot for a long time.
15. PuckettPHoM 2003. NHBA #98 overall.


Reuschel – What Sunnyday2 said above in comment #10
Redding – Fared well in the Cool Papa’s survey, but so did Spots Poles.

16-20 W. Cooper, Belle, G. Burns, Mattingly, Bonds
21-25 V. Willis, E. Howard, Parker, F. Howard, B. Williams
   108. Esteban Rivera Posted: December 21, 2011 at 10:18 PM (#4021465)
2012 Ballot:

Here we go again.

1. Rafael Palmeiro – My top holdover from last year.

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

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

4. Ed Williamson – Last year’s review brought Ed back into the top ten.

5. Tommy Bond – His dominance during his time vaults him back on the ballot.

6. Vic Willis –Blame the cohort analysis for making me take another look at Vic. Helps fill the late 1890’s cohort on the pitching side.

7. Bob Elliott – The post someone made about holding his outfield time against him was true in my case. Not as much an outfielder as I had previously thought.

8. Don Newcombe – After going over and reworking the different types of credit I give to the players in my consideration set, Newcombe slots here.

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

10. Kirby Puckett - Basically a peak/prime vote. Does not have any filler years at beginning or end of career and his defense /offense combination for his position and era give him the edge over the other candidates.

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

12. Bernie Williams – Not completely buying the terrible defensive numbers.

13. Tony Perez - His prime/career value is pretty good. Third base years help.

14. Bucky Walters – First time on my ballot. Reevaluated my defense penalty and war years.

15. Phil Rizzuto – Includes war credit. Vaults onto my ballot for the first time in a while.

Not on ballot but made Top 10 holdovers:

David Cone – In the same mold as Stieb and Saberhagen, pitchers that I did not support.

Dick Redding – Too much uncertainty surrounding him to put him on my ballot.

Luis Tiant – His problem is the lack of innings in an era where most great pitchers had the bulk.

Rick Reuschel – Still not convinced he belongs.

Gavvy Cravath – One of the enigmas in terms of career interpretation. His career in the majors combined with my interpretation of the other information places him just off ballot.
   109. Michael J. Binkley's anxiety closet Posted: December 21, 2011 at 10:32 PM (#4021473)
I re-ran all the numbers for everybody in my top 50 from my prelim and ended up with a couple of changes - Jim Whitney now ends up just off ballot (he’d still probably be in my PHoM, which I am slowly creating from scratch) and Dizzy Dean jumped up into the top ten. So due to Whitney dropping off, Davey Concepcion now gets the last spot on the ballot.

For me, the HoM is about greatness, not pure value, so obviously I am a peak/prime voter. I've been lurking here for many "years" and earlier this year finally came up with a peak-centric system with which I was happy. But a little over a month ago I decided to modify that system to value primes a little more.

I use a combination of all the major WAR systems (Chone, DanR, FG, BBGauge, BP). I take a player’s top 3 years (not necessarily consecutive) as peak and add in a prime factor that includes both magnitude and length of prime (for me prime = 4+ WAR years).
I am fairly liberal in giving credit (war, MiL, etc.), but try to be conservative in the amount that I give (e.g. I will not give war credit that would amount to being one of a players top 3 peak seasons). I do have a catcher bonus (a graduated seasonal one and a small career bump).
I wouldn’t have a problem with anyone in my top 40 or so being elected. For me, the gap between 1 and 7 on my ballot is as large as the difference between 8 and 36. Like others have said, at this point, we are splitting hairs.

On with the ballot:

1. Rick Reuschel - Okay, I’m convinced. Has the huge peak year, but also has a really long sustained prime in which you could pretty much count on 4+ WAR per year from him. In my earlier system, was down around end of the ballot. But with greater emphasis on prime, skyrockets to the top.

2. David Cone - Almost identical to Reuschel, except that his peak year occurred in a strike year, and has just a couple less seasons in his prime than Big Daddy, but still firmly in an “elect-me” spot.

3. Gavvy Cravath - One of the players I think this project was intended to “discover.” Needs MiL credit, and I don’t punish for taking advantage of his home park. If anything, he should be lauded because others failed to similarly capitalize. Also, defense, while not great, was not Luzinski-bad, either,

4. Albert Belle – The first really pure peak/short prime candidate on my ballot. His adjusted 1995 gives him the single best hitter’s season of anyone in my consideration set. But it was enough of, and high enough of a peak.

5. Dizzy Dean – A pitching version of Albert Belle. Just 6 seasons of greatness, but they were great enough.

6. Don Newcombe – He needs all sorts of extra credit (MiL, NeL, war, integration, low std dev era), but add it all up and he belongs. Also, one of the best “modern” hitting pitchers.

7. Bucky Walters – My system really likes pitchers who can hit, and Bucky falls right in line with that. Has the huge peak season in 1939 and just enough around it, even if some of it is WWII-discounted.

8. Sal Bando – Like others have, I’ve kind of split the baby between Chone and Dan R’s differences on 1970’s SS vs. 3b. Even so, Bando ends up at the top of the heap.

9. Dwight Gooden – Okay, I’m convinced, part II. His 1985 is the top pitching year in my consideration set. And he built enough around it from 1984 to 1993 to get here.

10. Babe Adams – A fragmented prime due to being sent down to the minors, but ended up as a better pitcher as a result. Has 3 good peak years (1911, 1913 and an adjusted 1919). Has just enough good enough seasons fitting in around them.

11. Bill Monroe – An underrated turn of the century star, although his raw stats don’t look like anything special, compared to his league averages, he shone.

12. Phil Rizzuto – Needs war credit, but has the great peak season, and with his spectacular defense, rises above the rest of the SS backlog.

13. Eddie Cicotte – Was really putting it together at the twilight of his career. Had monster seasons in 1917 and 1919. If only things had been different . . .

14. Ron Cey – I know Reggie Smith is in the HoM, but the Penguin was the best player on those 70’s Dodger teams that gave The Big Red Machine a run for it throughout the decade.

15. Dave Concepcion – A higher peak and a few more prime seasons in my system is what differentiates Davey from Dagberto.
Off-ballot, including required disclosures:

16. Luke Easter
17. Jim Whitney
18. Al Rosen
19. Ned Williamson
20. Bob Johnson
21. Tommy Bond
22. Elston Howard
23. Luis Tiant – probably in my PHom, just not enough bulk around his couple of MVP-level seasons
24. Frank Chance
25. Kevin Appier
26. Wally Schang
27. Bobby Bonds
28. Hugh Duffy – also probably in my PHoM once I finish creating back from the beginning. Like I said, I have no issues with anyone who votes for him since everyone at this level is bunched together and we’re splitting hairs.
29. Thurman Munson
30. Burleigh Grimes
31. Urban Shocker
32. Johnny Pesky
33. Bobby Veach
34. Dick Redding – Not enough for me surrounding his one great season – similar career to Gooden, just not as high a peak nor as many good surrounding seasons.
35. Robin Ventura
36. Rafael Palmeiro – Not enough peak for me, but much better than Beckley. I have no problem with his likely election this year.
37. Buddy Bell
38. Dave Bancroft
39. Hilton Smith
40. Jack Stivetts
41. Dale Murphy
42. Tony Mullane
43. Orel Hershiser
44. Bert Campaneris
45. Rocky Colavito
46. Bernie Williams
47. Fred McGriff
48. Cesar Cedeno
49. Vern Stephens
50. Bob Elliott
   110. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:09 PM (#4021494)
Looks like we have 30 ballots once I post mine.

Been a crazy day, just closed on land to build a house!

Could we maybe extend the deadline past 8 pm tonight to say 8 pacific? Just to help the stragglers?

Karlmangus said next week would help him - but extending (more than a few hours) for just one person is not really something we should do.

   111. rawagman Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:11 PM (#4021499)
I approve an extension of a few days, maybe even Monday. More votes is more important than an arbitrarily set deadline.
   112. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:13 PM (#4021500)
Didn't even need an extension this time :-)

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

I give full war credit, and I think it's a major mistake not to when comparing players across eras. My biggest regret on this project is that we didn't require all voters to give war credit like we did with Negro League credit. I see no difference, both were a circumstance of the player's birthday that was beyond his control.

I've systematically worked this in for anyone that is a reasonable candidate, all the way down to guys like Tommy Henrich, Mickey Vernon and Dom DiMaggio. If you want a copy of my Rosenheck access database with these guys added, please let me know.

I think it's a cop out to say we don't know so it's a zero. If a guy was a 25 WS a year player before and after the war, a zero is a much bigger mistake than giving him three 25s. As far as injury risk, you just credit a guy based on his playing time before and after the war. There's no reason to assume he would have been any more (or less) injury prone during those years.

I also follow similar philosophy on strikes. I just prorate the season, since a pennant is a pennant.

I give catchers at 50% career bonus, above and beyond what Pennants Added they accumulate.

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

I've been much more hands on in rating the pitchers than the position players, for which I rely on DanR's WARP, though I weigh them based on Pennants Added, not his salary estimator. I'm very confident in my pitcher rankings, and I make a manual adjustment for the extended career length that started in the 1960s (not shown below). My position player rankings are based largely on DanR's numbers.

After the player I'll list his Pennants Added and the player above and below him at his position on the lists.

1. Phil Rizzuto SS (3) - 1.02 PA, (Ernie Banks, Bert Campaneris). Now that I've given him systematic war credit and adjusted his 1946, during which he was recovering from malaria (which also impact his projections for 1943-45, if you use 1946 in those), he shows up with Rafael Palmeiro as the best holdover position player by a substantial margin. The top 4 on this ballot are very close.

2. Jack Quinn SP (4) - 1.10 PA, (Eppa Rixey, Whitey Ford). I'm giving him credit for 1916-18 where he was pitching (quite well) in the PCL after the Federal League went belly-up. He gets a big leverage bonus for his nearly 800 IP of relief work at a LI of 1.26. Without any PCL credit I still have him between Bridges and Grimes.

3. Rick Reuschel SP (5) - 1.05 PA, (Amos Rusie, Jim Bunning). This ranking surprised me a great deal when I first realized how good he was. It's one thing to 'discover' an Ezra Sutton (I mean as a group, not that I discovered him first or anything) who played 130 years ago. But Rick Reuschel was there, right before my very eyes. He pitched in the World Series for my favorite team when I was turning 9 years old. And I never had a clue he was this good.

My Pennants Added system, which accounts for fielding support, parks, bullpen support, etc.; shows him right behind Dazzy Vance, Ed Walsh and Amos Rusie, and ahead of Jim Bunning, Sandy Koufax and Juan Marichal.

He isn't peakless either. His top 4 years are similar to that of Ron Guidry or Mike Scott - both considered 'peak' candidates. His 1977 was every bit as valuable as Bunning's 1966. Bunning definitely has him beat in years 2-5, but Reuschel makes it up with more quality in the back end. I get them essentially equal, Reuschel was a little better inning for inning, Bunning had a higher peak, but in the end they even out.

I have Reuschel with a 115 DRA+ over 3745 tIP, Bunning was 113 over 3739 tIP. This is where I would have ranked Bunning, who sailed into the Hall of Merit, I have no issue putting Reuschel here.

Even when I take my numbers, but filter them through a Bill James-type NHBA scoring system (that heavily focuses on peak), Reuschel still comes out in a group with guys like Jim Palmer, Noodles Hahn, Eddie Rommel, Tex Hughson, Clark Griffith and Whitey Ford. Hahn, Rommel and Hughson all had very nice peaks.

Using a JAWS scoring system, he comes out in a group with Wes Ferrell, Jack Quinn, Palmer, Stan Coveleski, Red Faber and Urban Shocker.

I am saying that Reuschel was every bit as good as the Jims, Palmer and Bunning. The only difference between Palmer and Reuschel is park and defense. Reuschel's 1977 was better than any season Palmer had. Palmer, like Bunning was better than Reuschel in the 2-5 best seasons, but by less than a win a year, and over the course of their careers, Reuschel was better, 115 DRA+ to Palmer's 113 (in a similar number of innings, Palmer had 3781 tIP. He had the one great year, and was very good from 1973-81 and 1985, 1987-89. That's a record that not a lot of pitchers can match.

I nudged him down very slightly because he played in an era where pitcher career length was much higher than typical historically. See a little more in the Cone comment.

4. Rafael Palmeiro 1B (6) – 1.02 PA, (Eddie Murray, Mark McGwire). Very good and very consistent for a very long time. Only one season over 6 rWAR (1993, 6.7), but eight between 4-6 and four more between 3-4.

5. Bert Campaneris SS (7) - .93 PA, (Phil Rizzuto, Joe Sewell). .470 OWP, in an era where the average SS was at .372. Long (9625 PA) career as well, and a good fielder (62 FRAA). System says to rank him ahead of Concepcion pretty clearly.

6. Urban Shocker SP (8) - .94 PA, (Tommy Bridges, Billy Pierce). Vaulted in 1981, with 1918 war credit (he was having a great year), and an adjustment for the AL being much better than the NL during his time. He was a great pitcher, peak guys should really look closer at him. He'd be a no brainer without his illness, which should not impact a peak vote.

7. Gavy Cravath RF (10) - .90 PA, (Larry Walker, Bobby Bonds). Either he was a freak of nature, or there's a lot missing. I vote for the latter. Check out his thread for deeper discussion of the specifics, including a great analysis from Gadfly. He's the kind of guy we were hoping to catch when we started this project. I'm much more comfortable moving him this high after seeing his latest translations.

8. Ben Taylor 1B (11) - Negro Leaguer, Chris Cobb's MLE from 8/25/2004 suggests 325 WS. Consider me convinced that he was really was a great hitter. The Hall of Fame's Negro League Committee had access to a lot of data, and they chose to include him, in a group that we generally agreed with. That counts for something with me. I would have much preferred his election to that of Oms.

9. Tommy John SP (12) - 1.00 PA, (Bret Saberhagen, Wes Ferrell). Tons of career value. I would probably be sick to my stomach if Jim Kaat (who did very well in the Veteran's Committee balloting this year) got in and John did not. On the surface (career W-L) they appear similar, but when you adjust for everything, they aren't close. I have John as similar to, but better than Burleigh Grimes - about 800 more translated IP, at a 106 rate instead of a 104 rate. That's more than enough to offset Grimes peak edge. I get John somewhere between Eppa Rixey/Red Faber and Grimes on the continuum. He's over the in/out line for me. I also give no extra credit for his poineering the surgery - someone had to be first.

10. David Cone SP (13) - 1.09 PA, (Dazzy Vance, Ed Walsh). For the 2009 election I re-considered DanR's arguments in terms of standard deviation of era, and I'm still going to be a little more conservative with modern pitcher's due to the failure of my system to adjust downward modern career length for pitchers. This applies to John as well.

11. Tommy Bridges SP (14) - .94 PA, (Stan Coveleski, Urban Shocker). Unspectacular peak (although he would have won the 1936 AL Cy Young Award if it had been invented), but a lot of career value. War credit helps nudge him above Trout and Leonard. He could obviously still pitch when he left for the war, and was still good when he returned for a short time. I give him 2 years of credit at his 1941-43 level.

12. Dave Concepcion SS (15) - .88 PA, (Joe Sewell, Dave Bancroft). Better than I realized, and was really hurt by the 1981 strike, which occurred during his best season (and a season where the Reds had the best record in baseball, but missed the playoffs). Still no Trammell or Ozzie, but a very good player indeed. We could do worse than induct him.

13. Tommy Leach 3B/CF (--) - .88 PA (Stan Hack, Buddy Bell; Andre Dawson, Jim Wynn). I was a big fan of his awhile back, then he faded. He's back now, in no small part because of Dan R's work.

14. Bucky Walters SP (--) - .90 PA (Burleigh Grimes, Dwight Gooden). Walters once again gets my hotly contested 15th place vote. Johnny Pesky, Rabbit Maranville (with credit for a full 1918), Dave Bancroft, Don Newcombe, Burleigh Grimes, Edgar Martinez, Orel Hershister and Kevin Appier were top contenders. Walters combination of big years, hitting, and playing in what I consider a very tough era (the late 30s, right before war depleted the ranks and after nearly 40 years without expansion) won him my final 6 points.

15. Bernie Williams CF (n/e) - .83 PA (Jim Wynn, Brett Butler). This number puts him a little below Dave Bancroft and Buddy Bell in the .85 range. He is right there with HoMers like John McGraw, Billy Herman and Hughie Jennings. Some of the guys in this range are in, some aren't. He's clearly in the gray area. I am a Yankee fan. Questions about his defense - I don't think it was quite as bad as the advanced metrics say - keep his value low. I'd love to do more digging on this - but I do feel like there are all sorts of goofy things with the fielding numbers for those Yankee teams. That being said, I'll err on the side of caution this year.

Perpetual eligibility helps here - I don't have to worry about him falling off the ballot. Edmonds will end up placing higher. But any bump in Williams' defensive ratings would move him into the low, but clear HoMer range. Based on Mike Emeigh's comment on the ballot thread, I think this is reasonable and could bump Bernie next year. This evaluation gives him credit only as the numbers stand now.
   113. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:13 PM (#4021501)
Prominent newcomers:

Tim Salmon - .77 PA (Harry Hooper, Paul O'Neill). A star from 1993-98, with a huge season in 1995. According to Dan R's numbers he was the AL MVP that year, but he finished 7th in the actual vote. He missed 26 games in 1998 (I have no idea why), but he was never really the same player again after that. Through that season he was on a Hall of Fame track, but so are lots of guys through age 29. His list of comparables to that point within 3 points of OPS+ (135-141) includes George Foster, Mo Vaughn and Jason Giambi. That's pretty solid company for a player before age 30.

Brad Radke - .70 PA (Howie Pollet, Chief Bender). I think my cross-era innings adjustment is a little too generous for modern pitchers. I currently have Radke at 46.2 WAR, compared with 41.4 B-R WAR (a 12% boost, but a 15% innings boost - per inning I don't like him as much), 2826.7 tIP, 110 DRA+. He's already forgotten, but he hurt his labrum and retired while still a decent pitcher at age 33, having already won 148 games.

Do I think he was as valuable as Puckett, no. But PA has them close with an era innings adjustment. And B-R WAR has them 44.8-41.4, so it's close. I think this shows Puckett was overrated more than Radke was underrated. Neither are HoMers.

Javy Lopez - .41 PA (Ernie Lombardi, Darren Daulton). Not a HoMer or a HoFer, but a really good player for awhile. With the 50% catcher career PA bump (not included in the number next to his name). He's comparable to guys like Boog Powell, Larry Doyle, Jack Fournier, Orlando Cepeda, Davey Lopes, Roger Peckinpaugh.

Mandatory comments:

Hugh Duffy - .72 WAR. Pretty cool that perpetual eligibility keeps guys like Duffy around. rWAR has him with .4625 from 1893 on, so I need to come up with some estimates for 1888-1892.

What I did was run a regression on Pennants Added using Dan’s WAR against Chone’s WAR. Then I used the resulting function to convert Chone’s WAR to PA for the missing years. The reason I did it this way was because I like Dan’s WAR better and if there were any differences between the two in terms of how they treat Duffy, I wanted to lean towards Dan’s method.

Amongst players that finished their career before 1920, the .72 PA number puts Duffy in the company of guys like Roy Thomas and Fielder Jones. He’s just not good enough for me.

Luis Tiant - .88 PA. Comparing him with Reuschel . . . I've got Tiant 54th amongst post-1893 SPs eligible. I give him credit for 3362.3 tIP, at the equivalent of a 112 ERA+, and he was +5 runs as a hitter. Reuschel I get at 3745.3 tIP, a 115 rate, and the same +5 BRAR.

Looking at their seven best seasons in terms of WARP, I see Reuschel at 8.7, 6.5, 5.3, 5.2, 5.1, 4.9, 4.8; Tiant at 7.7, 6.4, 5.2, 5.1, 4.9, 4.6, 4.5. Reuschel's top 3 consecutive were 18.8; Tiant's 16.4.

Using a Bill James NHBA peaky type system, with my wins, I get Reuschel at #55, Tiant at #100. Using a JAWS type system, I get Reuschel #39, Tiant #60.

Dick Redding - he was good, but I think we are overrating him. I can't see how he's better than Grimes, who just misses my ballot.

Non-Mandatory comments:

Robin Ventura is a tier below with .83 PA (yes, there are that many players at this level - which is one thing that suggests HoVG for both Edgar and Ventura). Norm Cash and Bobby Bonds are also here. Buddy Bell is right there, a little actually, at .85 PA.

Since he was during the 2010 election a bit, Thurman Munson is close, but about a full season behind Bill Freehan. I give a 50% career bonus for catchers and with that, I get Munson at .79 PA. I have Freehan at .87. I draw the line at Freehan in, Munson out, but I can definitely see support for Munson as a candidate.

Bob Johnson - .80 PA. He's in the mix - but slides down when you deflate his numbers from WWII. I see him in a group with Fregosi, Cey, Cruz and Schang. I don’t think Edgar Martinez was all that better than Bob Johnson.

John Olerud - .75 PA (George Sisler, Fred McGriff). Olerud was a really good player with a very nice split peak (1993/1998). rWAR shows him as deserving the 1993 MVP that most statheads think should have gone to Frank Thomas. But he only had 7 years with 3 or more rWAR. It wouldn’t kill me to see him elected. He was a more valuable player than Fred McGriff, Kirby Puckett, Jake Beckley or Charlie Keller, for example. But he’s doesn’t have quite enough to make my ballot at this point.

Fred McGriff is down there with guys like Roy White, Jack Clark, Dale Murphy and George Burns at .73 PA. Defense and base running count.

Kirby Puckett - .69 PA. Loved to watch him play, but there's just not enough there. DanR's numbers show him similar to Rizzuto - before giving any war credit. I've got him in a group with Ken Singleton, Bob Elliott, Fielder Jones, Joe Tinker, Harlond Clift, etc.. Very good player. A solid all-star in his day. But not a HoMer.
   114. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:22 PM (#4021505)
How about this ... Anyone against an extension? Speak up!

I'm going to be on the road the next few hours. I'm posting on my iPad from 7-11 parking lot :-)

So I trust you all to come to a reasonable conclusion here ...
   115. Gerald Bostock Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:38 PM (#4021510)
Last year I noted that I had an epiphany during the interval between the 2010 and 2011 voting. I decided to reverse completely the way I constructed my ballot. For the first time in my erratic HoM voting, I started my winnowing process by first ranking players by a career value measure. This year I've continued developing both my career measure, as well as gradually reworking my method of rating pitchers once on the ballot.

Last year I also shifted my focus away from WARP (DanR style) and towards Win Shares Above Bench for the purpose of calculating seasonal values. For pitchers, I have my own system that attempts to match a pitcher with an average defence for season and league, and then add up the resultant 'wins'.

My system is composed of three elements. First, I rank players by their overall careers, using traditional counting targets such as 3000 hits or 250 wins, career rate statistics such as batting average, and adding in values for achievements such as MVP awards. Then, I apply a positional balance. Finally, I rank them by the number of 'All-Star' or 'MVP' seasons, as it is by seasons that a player will have the most impact in putting his team on the championship path. In the bottom third of the ballot, I apply a subjective positional element to my rankings, as noted.

1 Hugh Duffy OF (All-Star 1890, 1891, 1892, 1893, 1894) 138.6 WSAB during 1889-98 prime. Duffy's case goes beyond racking up five consecutive All-Star seasons. He was also the best at his position in each of them except 1890. He was the premier outfielder of his era, but also his seasons possess a lot of pure value.
2 Thurman Munson C (All-Star 1970, 1973) 88 WSAB during 1970-9 prime. Munson is unjustifiably overlooked by the electorate. His contemporaries include HoMers Johnny Bench, Joe Torre, Ted Simmons and Carlton Fisk. Despite that, he is the best or second-bes catcher by WSAB in 1970, 1973 (best) and 1976 (best). For the 1970-6 period in the American League, he was top of the class.
3 Bucky Walters SP (All-Star 1939, 1940, 1941, 1944) 118.7 WSAB during 1937-46 prime. I've had Walters on the fringes of the 'elect-me' slots through most of my HoM voting career, the one exception being 2010, when he was hurt a bit by a system that rated ten-year prime higher than peak. By my system, the impact of his defences is being overrated by the electorate and he really does deserve high consideration. But if elected, he's likely to mark a borderline for HoM pitchers.
4 Vic Willis SP (All-Star 1898, 1899, 1901, 1902, 1906, 1909) 128.9 WSAB during 1898-1907 prime. I'm not comfortable with placing him this high, but he really does seem the best option in terms of my benchmarks. He was the best pitcher in baseball in 1899, and second best in 1901. I spotted him very close to the deadline last season, and my method of ranking pitchers is quite time consuming, so he didn't make the ballot last year. He might well have got an 'elect-me' vote then.
5 Burleigh Grimes SP (All-Star 1918, 1920, 1921, 1928, 1929) 100.3 WSAB during his 1920-29 prime. I use my own system of estimating WARP for pitchers, one which puts a league-average defence behind them. Grimes comes very well out of this, especially considering the high-offense environment he confronted during his prime.
6 Dizzy Dean SP (All-Star 1934, 1935, 1936) 101.4 WSAB during his 1932-41 prime. I voted for Dean in ballots I posted a long time ago, and now he's back on my ballot. Falls behind Grimes because I find Steve Treder's interesting suggestion that the ball was deadened in the NL's 1930s convincing.
7 Ben Taylor 1B I don't have so much data for him, but based on the work being posted on, and the fact that he was elected to the Hall of Fame, suggests to me that he is a better option than Palmeiro, and probably a little bit better than Jim Rice. He certainly was the class of the Negro League 1Bs for much of his career.
8 Jim Rice LF (All Star 1977, 1978, 1979, 1986) 112.7 WSAB during 1977-86 prime. He was a dominant force in his league in his time, even accounting a bit for park. His 1977-9 is a concentrated core that is very impressive. Rice benefited from a career that got kick-started in 1977 by a livelier ball in a hitter's park It's really that .502 career slugging in an era that is nowhere near a 'Sillyball Horror Show' that sells him to me. He's a strong representative from an exceptionally balanced era of baseball.
   116. Gerald Bostock Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:39 PM (#4021511)
9 Rafael Palmeiro 1B (All-Star 1991, 1993, 1996, 1998, 1999) 140.2 WSAB during his 1990-99 prime. Colour me underwhelmed. Palmeiro is not the kind of player I find convincingly meritworthy. He ranked at 9 last year, and he takes the same spot this year. He was regularly outclassed by others during his career (1996 and 1998 look very weak for All-Star seasons), and doesn't look quite as impressive as my new find Taylor. His only season as the best player at his position was as a DH in 1999.

IN order to get my ballot in on time, I'm going to cut back on comments here.

10 Kirby Puckett CF Puckett arrived on my ballot for the first time in 2010, when he benefited from a new system. I have him at about the same prime value as Rice, but not quite as a high a peak, and nowhere near comparable value as Palmeiro.
11 Pie Traynor 3B Traynor has generally been dismissed for his low peak, and compared unfavourably with players who came after him. However, there is no doubt Traynor was the greatest third-baseman in the major leagues during his career. Michael Humphrey's book 'Wizardry' shows him to be one of the greatest fielding 3b of all time, in an era when this was valued more at his position than might be the case today.
12 Lou Brock LF. (All-Star 1967, 1968, 1971) He has a lot of career value by the main measure I use, and in fact has more WAR, Win Shares and WSAB than Rice and Puckett during both career and prime. Unfortunately, his peak is a little flat, Palmeiro-lite. He was overshadowed during his peak career in LF by Carl Yastrzemski, and even in his highest-ranked season (1971) could only go as high as #2.
13 Phil Rizzuto He looks to me the best shortstop not in the Hall of Merit. In contrast to Traynor and Puckett, I think he faced stiffer competition from his rivals (HoMer Pee Wee Reese among them) for the title of 'best shortstop' in the major leagues. Nonetheless, I think the gap in contributions during their respective primes, as measured by WSAB, is significant. So he's down the bottom of the ballot.
14 Rick Reuschel Showed up well in my pitcher measure, not so well in WSAB.
15 Dave Concepcion No All-Star seasons means not much peak to speak of.

Top Tens:
David Cone, Luis Tiant: I have these as part of a set of very closely matched pitchers that also includes Don Newcombe. None of these pitchers comes up nearly as well in my system as Reuschel, the lowest ranked pitcher on my ballot, in terms of overall career value. They do, however, look in the same class as Bucky Walters, who is ranked ahead of Reuschel. However, Walters has a few more high-impact seasons.
Cannonball Dick Redding: The level of uncertainty around his candidacy makes me nervous. I have read a few Negro Leaguer threads during this voting season, and it is not clear to me that the equivalent statistics of any Negro Leaguers have been regressed properly. Since we can't undo an election, I'd prefer to wait a little longer to get more information from Seamheads. The data published there is giving me, at least, a much clearer picture of context, as we now have with Ben Taylor, who has made my ballot.

New guys:
Williams not as good as Belle, who fell off my ballot this year. No-one else anywhere near as good as Williams.
   117. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 21, 2011 at 11:43 PM (#4021513)
Dave Concecipon played in 9 all-star games and was 4th in the 1981 NL MVP vote. What do you mean no all-star seasons?
   118. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 12:17 AM (#4021522)
I just received this from John: "Might as well extend it to next week, Joe. I could use the time tonight for other things anyway. :-)"

Any objections?
   119. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: December 22, 2011 at 12:28 AM (#4021530)
I apologize to people who are annoyed by ballots coming in at the last minute. I have a great capacity for putting things off unless there’s a deadline. It’s simply the way that I am.

My ranking system isn’t that specific. It’s based more on BB-ref’s WAR than anything else, but I still have WS and old WARP totals on my spreadsheet. (Well, no WARP for Bernie. Sorry.) I didn’t see the link to Humphreys’ DRA in time to systematically include it in my analysis, but I did check it out for some cases. (Unfortunately for his case, Bernie did get included in that.)

I also try to include both peak and career candidates, but tend to lean more towards the career when push comes to shove. When I talk about WS or WAR rate, that’s per PA.

This year I tried to boost pitchers to some degree – I agree with those who feel we probably have not elected enough of them. I also don’t trust WAR when it comes to the 1970s 3Bmen (Bando, Cey, Nettles and Bell). They’re very close to each other, and we can’t elect all of them. So Cey slides down to join the rest in the 30s. As usual, most of my changes impact the rankings off of the ballot.

My PHoM this year is Edgar Martinez, Rafael Palmeiro, and Rube Foster.

1. Bus Clarkson (4) Parallels Elliot’s career, but with war credit he comes out ahead, and he presumably had more defensive value. (Quick comparison to Alomar – WS 344 to 376 in 1900 fewer PA, OPS+ 123 to 116, 3B/SS to 2B. Even deflating the MLEs a bit, that looks pretty close to me.) Made my PHoM in 1997.

2. Dick Redding (5) Seems to have a pretty good peak, and also has somewhat of a career argument. I still tend to think he’s close enough to Mendez that they both should be in or out. I did check his Wikipedia page, but I don’t see any great confusion among the sources of his statistics. Made my PHoM in 1973.

(2A. Edgar Martinez)

3. Rick Reuschel (8) Very close to Tiant but Reuschel is just a bit ahead due to the different eras they pitched in, and a greater consistency. Made my PHoM in 2010.

4. Bill Monroe (6) Surprised to see I’m not his Best Friend anymore. Now if he could just get some more friends… The most recent Cuban translations boost him a slight bit, as we have more evidence for his quality. A good player at an important defensive position, with a great reputation for his fielding. People like to promote the 1890s as underrepresented, but that doesn't mean the 00s and 10s are overrepresented. Made my PHoM in 1939.

5. Rafael Palmeiro (7) It’s not that he had no peak, but he didn’t have a really strong one. He does have a lot of career value, and definitely more defensive value than Edgar. But he wasn’t the great hitter that Martinez was, and ultimately comes out just a bit behind to me. Makes my PHoM this year.

6. Bobby Bonds (10) More of a prime candidate than anything else, but his peak and career values aren’t bad either. Even with Smith’s election, I still think 1970’s OF are a bit underrepresented. Slides ahead of Johnson due to WAR, but they’re still quite close. Made my PHoM in 2008.

7. Phil Rizzuto (12) Accounting for the malaria as an effect of the war helps him move up a couple of spots. With war credit, it’s pretty clear he’d have more career value than Stephens. Peak is a different issue, but he’s not that far behind Stephens, and he did have a few excellent seasons. Might deserve Minor League credit for 1940 (I’m not counting it at the moment.) Made my PHoM in 1997.

8. Luis Tiant (9) He had some outstanding years, and contributed long enough to build up a decent career value. There were a lot of great pitchers in his era, but that happens sometimes. Made my PHoM in 2005.

9. Norm Cash (11) A lot of good years, but I really think he's the Beckley of the 60s, with a shorter career (although that's not really much of a criticism), and the fluke year. Even if you take 1961 out, he’s still clearly ahead of Cepeda and Perez in WS and WARP rate. He really does look pretty similar to Hernandez, and for some reason has 6 Win Shares Gold Gloves to Keith's 1.
Made my PHoM in 2003.

10. Bob Johnson (13) I'm impressed by his consistency, he was an above-average player every year for 13 seasons, plus he got started very late in the bigs, so I will give him at least 1 year of minor league credit. I think the era considerations have been a little overblown, and I still don’t think Joe Medwick was any better than Bob. Made my PHoM in 1992.

11. Tommy Leach (16) Doesn’t do great by WAR, although a lot of the other 3B candidates are in the hard-to-differentiate 70s clump. Excellent fielder at important positions, OK hitter. One of the most complete players on the ballot. Made my PHoM in 1940.

12. Gavvy Cravath (14) With the basic 07, 09-11 additions, this is where I have him. A better peak than Johnson, but less consistent. WAR isn't quite as fond of him as WS, but he compares well to Kiner & Keller. Made my PHoM in 1987.

13. Ben Taylor (15) A solid candidate who might have been overlooked. 3rd-best 1B in the Negro Leagues, a good hitter with an outstanding defensive rep. Also did some pitching early on. I have him as the best overall 1B of his era – Sisler was better at his best, but that just didn’t last long enough. Made my PHoM in 2009.

(13A Rube Foster, 13B Ralph Kiner)

14. Tommy Bridges (24) Very hard to differentiate between Bridges and Cone. Like Johnson, extremely consistent, which I feel is a strength. I am giving him war credit, but not minor-league credit.

Now I’m wondering who would have said no if a Bridges-Johnson trade was offered. OK, probably the Tigers, but that doesn’t mean they’d have been right.

15. David Cone (25) Had some very strong years, but he doesn’t have the best peak, or the best career. But in a backlog year, he’s good enough to make the ballot.

(15A John McGraw)

16. Jack Clark (20) It took WAR to get him to stick out from the crowd for me, but he’s very similar to Bob Johnson – a bit less consistent, and he wasn’t the greatest guy in the locker room. But there’s just not a lot separating them.

17. George Van Haltren (17) Wins the “Wait, why did I have this guy so high?” award. A very good player for a long time, even if he was never truly great. I don’t reject all peak arguments, but I’d take his consistency over Duffy’s big years. Still, looking at DRA, I have the urge to move him down a bunch and put Mike Griffin around here. Maybe next year. Made my PHoM in 1972.

18. Don Newcombe (18) Basically the only pitcher candidate left from the 50s, and he has an interesting argument – see the discussion in the Belle thread about alcoholism. And he gets less attention from the HoF people than Gil Hodges or Allie Reynolds. Read about the Yankees and Dodgers in the 50s, and tell me who people thought was a better pitcher.

But I have to admit that even with all the extra credit, there isn’t quite enough to keep him ahead of Cone and Bridges.

(18A Sam Thompson)

19. Thurman Munson (22) Didn’t hit quite as well as Bresnahan, but Roger also accumulated a fair amount of hanging-around value, even by WAR.

20. John Olerud (27) I understand the comment that McGriff looked more like a Hall of Famer, but Olerud was just perpetually overlooked. He clearly had significantly more defensive value than McGriff, and the offensive difference is not huge (OPS+ 134-128). Olerud looks better by the comprehensive metrics, and I think he’s just ahead of the Crime Dog.

21. Dizzy Dean (21) Does have a really good peak argument by some metrics, but he stands out less by WAR than he did by the other ones.

(21A Hughie Jennings)

22. Cesar Cedeno (46) WAR really likes him compared to all of the other CF candidates, but he doesn’t stick out in any other way. Not sure why I didn’t have him higher last year.

23. Vern Stephens (28) Close to Rizzuto, but with the wartime discount and the sudden dropoff after 1950, not quite there.

(23A Andre Dawson)

24. Tony Perez (23) He does have a good peak, but his late-70s years aren't much above average. And for a mostly 1B guy, even his peak OPS+s aren’t impressive.

25. Bob Elliott (33) I’m comfortable putting him ahead of the 70s group now. He’s got a case for being the best 3B in baseball in the late 40s, those guys simply don’t.

(25A Charley Jones)

26. Urban Shocker (35) OK, his move up is mostly because I was boosting pitchers. He is a good candidate, but his career is a bit too short, even with the ½ year war credit.

27. Joe Tinker (45) His DRA numbers are really, really good. I also decided I was probably underrating SS in general a bit.

28. Bernie Williams (new) A really good player when he was at his best, but everything says the defense was so bad in the second half of his career that it keeps him away from the ballot.

29. Tony Lazzeri (19) If I was underrating SS, I was overrating 2Bmen . Still sure he’s the best MLB candidate, though. Compare him to Larry Doyle, who some people vote for. Their career lengths are similar, Doyle was a better hitter, but not much, and Lazzeri was a much better fielder.

30. Fred McGriff (30) Very close in overall value to Perez, even if they got there different ways. Has a decent prime, but not quite as long or as high as Martinez’s, and he just wasn’t quite there.

(30A Roger Bresnahan,)

31. Orlando Cepeda (32) A little ways behind the other 1Bmen. They all have a stronger argument from one angle or another.

32. Bucky Walters (31) Would be higher, but when you consider a wartime discount, his 115 ERA+ really isn’t impressive.

33. Dale Murphy (29) Excellent peak, and now I see him as ahead of Puckett even with the abrupt end of the peak.

(33A Graig Nettles)

34. Kevin Appier (48) A strong peak, but the career is just not up to the pitchers who make the top 15.

35. Ron Cey (26) Just don’t feel comfortable having him ahead of the other guys any more.

(35A Pete Browning)

36. Kirby Puckett (34)
37. Sal Bando (39)
38. Jose Cruz (37)
39. Mike Griffin (52)
40. Dave Bancroft (55)

(40A George Sisler)

41. Elston Howard (36) WAR absolutely hates him, giving him almost no value outside of his 4-year peak. Even with credit for military service, the slow pace of integration & being stuck behind Yogi, you can’t get that record into a HoM-worthy career. Other metrics are not so harsh, but I can’t just ignore something so striking.

Made my PHoM in 2004. Have to admit I probably made a mistake here. Looking at my voting history, this probably would have wound up with Ralph Kiner in my PHoM this year. Oh well.

(41A Rollie Fingers,)

42. Albert Belle
43. Buddy Bell
44. Eddie Cicotte
45. Johnny Evers
46. Pedro Guerrero
47. Vic Willis
48. Carlos Moran
49. Dolf Luque
(49A Nellie Fox)
50. Spotswood Poles

51. Carl Mays
52. Bert Campaneris
53. Bobby Veach
54. Marvin Williams
55. Hugh Duffy I just don’t see anything that special about him. He had the great 1894, but he had a fairly short career, and I don’t see much to differentiate him from the other 1890s OFers. It may be that I’m overrating Van Haltren, but I don’t think I’m significantly underrating Duffy.
56. Frank Howard
57. Tommy John
58. Ken Singleton
59. Robin Ventura
60. Gene Tenace
   120. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: December 22, 2011 at 01:23 AM (#4021550)
I support an extension.

Brock--Who says pitching stdevs were low during Adams's career?? They were low in the '20s, but plenty high in the deadball era...

Also, why does it matter that Reuschel's peak/prime were nonconsecutive? Value is value...
   121. Gerald Bostock Posted: December 22, 2011 at 03:40 AM (#4021601)
What do you mean no all-star seasons?

I'm talking about my 'All-Star' seasons, not everyone else's!
   122. Gerald Bostock Posted: December 22, 2011 at 03:41 AM (#4021602)
Having bust a gut to get my ballot in on time, and not in as complete a form as I'd like, I'd be a bit peeved at a last-minute extension. You could have decided this several hours ago and given me a break.
   123. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 03:55 AM (#4021610)
I could have, but I was closing on a house :-)

That being said, if you need time to tweak, you do have it now ...

If you don't consider Concepcion's 1981 at all-star level, your all-star threshold is too high, or your system is underrating shortstop D or something.

Heck his 1974, 76, 78 and 79 were all outstanding seasons.
   124. Gerald Bostock Posted: December 22, 2011 at 04:15 AM (#4021620)
Only rawagman among the non-administrators has publicly asked for an extension here. I'm not really bothered whether there is an extension or not. I just don't like that this wasn't decided earlier in the day. It seems to me a definitive decision could have been taken at 6.14 or 6.23 pm.
   125. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 05:59 AM (#4021656)
I do see your point, I am (sincerely) sorry for the inconvenience.

Dan R also lobbied for an extension. Howie objected.

There wasn't much discussion either way, which is part of why it took so long. No one seemed to care much either way.

I leaned no once I saw 30 ballots in, but didn't care too much either way.
   126. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 06:01 AM (#4021657)
And I'll add that when I asked if anyone needed extra time, no one said - "please let me know one way or another as early as possible because it will be really inconvenient, but I'll find a way to get it done if I have to."
   127. DL from MN Posted: December 22, 2011 at 04:50 PM (#4021907)
Tony actually got banned by the AA for 1885.

This is why the ballot comments are so valuable. I hadn't considered giving Tony Mullane credit for his 1885 before. I don't think I looked at him beyond just the numbers in the spreadsheet. He lost what surely would have been one of his peak seasons. That's enough to move him from 33rd to 17th in my rankings, or just barely off ballot.

Looking into Mullane more - I think you could conceivably deduct credit for trying to injure his catcher Moses Fleetwood Walker by purposely crossing him up.
   128. dan b Posted: December 22, 2011 at 05:15 PM (#4021940)
What is the new deadline?
   129. DanG Posted: December 22, 2011 at 06:08 PM (#4021995)
Javy Lopez...comparable to guys like Boog Powell, Larry Doyle, Jack Fournier....
Joe, since you give minor league credit to Quinn and Cravath, have you looked at Fournier closely? Spent most of the 1917-19 seasons (age 27-29) tearing up the PCL. The thinking of the day is he didn't have the glove a 1B needed, despite being one of the AL's top five hitters. So the Chisox screwed around with him, replacing him with Gandil in 1917 and letting Fournier go to the west coast. He continued working on his "D" and when the Sox eventually wanted him back for 1919, Jack wanted nothing more to do with Comiskey, preferring to play another year out in his native west coast. Branch Rickey snapped him up the next off season and the rest is history. Fournier's discussion thread is interesting.
   130. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 06:19 PM (#4022011)
DanG - I'm going to move the Fournier discussion over the ballot discussion thread. Very interesting.
   131. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 07:03 PM (#4022047)
dan b - I think Wednesday night of next week makes sense, with a lot of people having a work holiday Monday.

Ballot counters - does that work for you all?
   132. bjhanke Posted: December 22, 2011 at 07:11 PM (#4022054)
Dan (comment 120) -

I actually have answers to your two questions, but I also need to do all the things I should have been doing if I weren't racing the deadline for this ballot. Answering the first question involves a poor answer, since I did the work on this years and years ago and have forgotten exactly what I did. My answer to the second boils down to "I try to think like a manager, and managers want reliability so they can set up their teams and have some idea of what they will get. A guy with a string of good seasons is a big help. It's one of the reasons that I like Leever and Philippe so much. Essentially, for a decade, Fred Clarke could go into spring training knowing who his top two pitchers were and about what they would end up producing." The reason I try to think like a manager is that I have been one at amateur levels, and also because I direct plays (I have too many hobbies) and have learned to value reliability and consistency, when you can get it out of high-tension high-talent people (actors, all too similar to MLB players). More detail later, after Xmas.

DL (comment 127) - Thanks! Always glad to know that the torrent of words I inflict on this list actually is helpful upon occasion. - Brock
   133. DL from MN Posted: December 22, 2011 at 07:29 PM (#4022070)
Wednesday night of next week makes sense

You've guaranteed this election will not influence HoF voters. Palmeiro is the only reason why it would though.
   134. ronw Posted: December 22, 2011 at 08:38 PM (#4022137)

Wednesday night (12/28) works for this ballot counter.

   135. rawagman Posted: December 22, 2011 at 09:46 PM (#4022245)
Wednesday is fine for me
   136. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2011 at 09:53 PM (#4022255)
Right Dan . . . I don't really see how this election would influence Hall of Fame voters, unless we elect Bernie Williams. They aren't voting for Raffy. Our other high end backlog isn't eligible.

Where were these comments over the last couple of days when I was asking for discussion? :-)

We got a very late start this year, apologies. I have a new daughter, who isn't quite 4 months, and we have been in the process with this house thing since July, between dealing with builders, and lenders and closing being pushed back three different times.

Couple that with a busy work schedule that included cross-country travel the first two weeks after Thanksgiving, and I've been slammed. I'll try to do better next year.
   137. DL from MN Posted: December 22, 2011 at 10:42 PM (#4022322)

Where were these comments over the last couple of days when I was asking for discussion?

I couldn't log in from home. Now I can, thanks.
   138. theorioleway Posted: December 23, 2011 at 12:08 AM (#4022356)
Joe Domino: I can appreciate how hectic life can be--I'm just glad the ballot is happening! However, if I can be so bold (since I am new to the HOM), while you are paying attention to the site--would you (or whoever can) put up the 2011 members (Bagwell, Walker, and Brown) in the plaque room? If it is an issue of creating bios, I am willing to do that (although I appreciate that there are plenty of people involved in this project more qualified than I am on that account). I don't know that the franchise standings and other miscellaneous info needs to be updated, but it seems that we should have all the players in there and listed by position and that they were first year candidate honorees. It is also handy to have them all the players together when comparing to the HOF (especially for those who are not part of the project and don't have their spreadsheets but are curious to compare the two institutions).
   139. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 23, 2011 at 01:37 AM (#4022407)
Good call theorioleway . . . I agree. I'll ask John if he still wants to do the plaques (or if he's written them already without posting them), and if not, your volunteering is accepted!
   140. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 23, 2011 at 02:06 AM (#4022426)
Talked to John, and theorioleway, we'd love to have you do the plaques if you want.

If you could try to keep them in a similar style, that'd be helpful.

Maybe post your drafts on the player's threads for a review before move them 'live'? Does that work?
   141. rawagman Posted: December 23, 2011 at 03:36 AM (#4022466)
Joe and theorioleway - I had been helping John the past few years - he would do a first draft ad I would try to tighten up where possible, keeping the style of previous plaques in mind - I'm happy to help you out if you wish.
Joe - Congrats! First child?
   142. Howie Menckel Posted: December 23, 2011 at 03:54 AM (#4022473)
"Dan R also lobbied for an extension. Howie objected."

Well, my historic position always has been against extensions, repeated ad nauseum.
I think this time I noted that I wasn't sure if I could make it (busiest stretch for me in years at work, and lots of good off-season info that made me hesitant to vote early). But I wasn't going to complain if I missed out.

In the more recent era, I've yielded somewhat to reality and suggested that maybe in the MMP voting, which is not time-sensitive, maybe we need a certain number of ballots to make it valid.

I absolutely sympathize with anyone who scrambled to make it, only to find out it got extended again.
At least I knew it likely would happen, and I just scrambled because things won't get any slower in the next few days, either.

I chalk it up to human nature...
   143. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 23, 2011 at 04:13 AM (#4022482)
Rawagman great, any help would definitely be appreciated.

And thanks, yes, first child, it's been a wild, fun ride so far!
   144. theorioleway Posted: December 23, 2011 at 03:47 PM (#4022623)
Joe/rawagman: I have posted the drafts on their threads.
   145. DL from MN Posted: December 23, 2011 at 05:24 PM (#4022682)
Zero ballots and counting since the voting was extended 2 days ago. What we have here is a group of chronic procrastinators.
   146. DL from MN Posted: December 23, 2011 at 05:25 PM (#4022683)
And thanks, yes, first child, it's been a wild, fun ride so far!

Righty or lefty?
   147. karlmagnus Posted: December 23, 2011 at 05:49 PM (#4022697)
Thanks for the extra time -- was finally able to draw breath:

Only Bernie W. comes close this time, and he’s just off. Salmon not enough career and I was surprised how unimpressive Ruben Sierra’s stats were – at the time, would have thought him as good as Palmeiro. So old favorites move up, with Frank Howard, Duffy and Staub back on the ballot.

Checked, and I’ve got all last year’s Top 10 on here somewhere. Palmeiro’s on, Cone and Tiant close.

1. (N/A-7-7-6-8-6-6-7-7-6-7-7-7-9-8-7-7-4-5-3-3-3-5-4-4-4-6-4-4-4-5-2-2
-4-4-3-3-5-4-3-2-2-3-5-2-2-1-2-1-2-1-3-1-2-1-2) Addie Joss. I’m now even more convinced I missed him earlier, and that adjusting innings down for dead ball pitchers is illegitimate. 2327 IP at an ERA+ of 142. 160-97 by age 30. If you assume the rest of his career would have been 1800 IP, 120-90 with an ERA+ of 110 (somewhat conservative, assuming you boost his last sick season, though pitchers didn’t last as long as they did later) then 50% credit would put him at 3227IP, 220-142, with ERA+ of 130. 25% credit puts him at 2777 IP, 190-120, with ERA+ of 136. Substantially better than Koufax. OPS+20. Electorate needs to take him more seriously. 121PP.

2. (N/A-10-8-7-6-4-3-3-5-9-7-8-6-4-4-4-6-4-5-6-5-4-6-7-6-5-5-6-7-5-5-4-
4-5-4-6-4-4-5-4-4-5-4-4-6-5-5-5-6-7-5-5-6-7-6-5-5-7-5-5-5-6-3-4-7-6-4-4-6-5-4-3-3-4-6-3-3-2-3-3-4-2-5-2-3-3-4) Eddie Cicotte. Only 208-149 and an ERA+ of 123, but 3223 IP, more than Waddell and should get about 25% of the bonus for the 300-win career he should have had (he was, after all, a knuckleballer, who tend to peak late.) Much better than the 20s glut – only loses to Welch on longevity – Newhouser a close comp, but Cicotte had a longer career. Successfully cursed Red Sox AND White Sox for over 8 decades! 106PP

3. (N/A-5) Rafael Palmeiro 3020 hits@132 TB+BB/PA .559 TB+BB/Outs .858. Clearly inferior to Bagwell. Also inferior to Jake Beckley, whose 125 OPS+ in the dead ball era is more impressive than Palmeiro’s 132 in the steroid era (apart from any direct effect of steroids) – Beckley’s triples were park-affected and would have been homers with higher SLG in a different park. This rating is without an explicit discount for steroids, though I suppose they make me round down slightly

4. (N/A-10-9-8-10-11-10-13-12-14-N/A-15-14-13-12-11-10-10-11-9-9
-5-3-6-3-4-5-6) Ernie Lombardi. Up a bit more; we’re forgetting him. Berra closely comparable. 2137 hits, normalized to a 130 game season, and an OPS+ of 125 makes him a little better than Schang, but some of it was during the war years and he fielded badly. TB+BB/PA .492, TB+BB/Outs .719., the ratio between the two very low because of strikeouts, I assume. Plus a great nickname!

5. (N/A-14-15-14-13-14-15-14-15-14-15-15-13-12-13-10-11-13-12-10-
11-12-11-6-5-5-6-8-5-5-4-5-5-6-4-7-4-5-7-7) Vern Stephens. Short career – only 1859 hits, but comparing him to Reese he was much better, and not far short of Doerr. TB+BB/PA .508, TB+BB/Outs .756. OPS+ 119 Best season 1944, however. Sliding up ballot.

6. (N/A-8-8) Fred McGriff 2497 hits @134. TB+BB/PA .566 TB+BB/Outs .873 Slightly better than I had expected, and fully ballot-worthy, halfway up as we’ve cleared out the stronger backloggers.

7. (N/A-9-8-8-9-10-8-10-9-8-7-8-11-11-10-10-10-11-11-10-9-11-12-
-8-6-6-9-7) Wally Schang. When you normalize his career to 130 game seasons for the first 18 years, as I do for catchers, he gets to 1941 hits, more than Groh at an OPS+ of 117, very similar. Furthermore, TB+BB/PA=.455, TB+BB/Outs=.728, also significantly better than Groh, over very close to the same period. And he was a catcher, more difficult than 3B.

8. (15-14-11-12-10-9-6-8-7-7-6-7-6-3-3-3-2-3-2-2-3-2-4-5-4-2-3-2-3-3-
-14-13-N/A-14-13-15-11) Mickey Welch. UER were 43.37% of total runs allowed for Mickey, compared to about 40% with all his HOM contemporaries except Galvin (who started earlier, anyway.) Hence his ERA+, his weakness anyway, overstates his value; in spite of 307-210 he was primarily an innings-eater. 4802IP. Will now be on and off ballot. 115PP, which elevates him a bit

9. (N/A-12-11-11-13-14-11-12-11-12-10-10-8-11-9-9-11-12) Tommy John 288-231, 4710IP@111. Infinitesimally below Sutton, better than Kaat. 99PP

10. (N/A-12-10-12-10-11-10-7-7-8-9-7-9-13-11-10-11-12-12-11-11-11-
10-8-8-9-10-9-8-8-10-10-9-8-9-6-7-10-8-10-8-8-10-13) Sam Leever. Pity he wasn’t able to start at the normal time; 2 more years would have made him a NB. Only 2660 innings at an ERA+ of 123, but was blocked till 27 by the one-league 1890s and having a steady job as a schoolteacher. Believe he needs to be looked at seriously by others, and included in pitcher analysis. Mild plus for high level of moral probity. Only 88PP, which drops him a bit

11. (N/A-11-12-11-11-12-13-14-12-15-15-15-15-N/A-15-N/A-13-14-13-14-11-11-9-12-10-10-12-14) Carl Mays Had slipped down too far. 3021 innings at 119, 207-126 and 83 OPS+ Others should look at him more closely. 88PP

12. (N/A-13-13-11-14-12-11-13-15) Elmer Smith Deduct 10% from Elmer's Western League 1890 and 1891 batting and slugging percentages we get 301/461 and 284/431 respectively. Comparing against the PL of 1890 gives an OPS+ of about 130, against the NL of 1891 gives an OPS+ of about 139. That gives him 14 years of full-time play; adjust those to 130 game seasons (which I did for 19th century players) gives him about 2140 hits at an OPS+ of 128-129 plus a pitching record of about 1400IP at an ERA+ of 113 and a W/L of about 96-72. Elmer baby, you're on my ballot, albeit towards the bottom of it. Only 97 years late.

13. (N/A-15-N/A-15-N/A-14-13-14-11-12-14-13-11-13-14-13-11-10-10-12-13-10-11-10-11-9-9-12-15-13-12-14-N/A) Frank Howard Very slightly better than Kiner – significantly longer career. Underrated by history, but down a little when I look at Belle. OPS+ 142 for 1774 hits. TB+BB/PA .546, TB+BB/Outs .805 in a pitchers’ park and era.

14. (N/A-6-5-9-8-9-8-7-10-11-8-9-7-7-6-6-9-9-8-6-6-6-5-4-8-7-9-12-
N/A-14-13-15-N/A-14-15-14-15-15-N/A-15-14-N/A) Hugh Duffy. We don’t have enough Beaneaters! However he’s not quite as good as Elmer Smith.

15. (N/A-15-N/A-14-13-15-N/A) Rusty Staub. 2716 hits at OPS+124. TB+BB/PA .484, TB+BB/Outs .724. Not quite as good as Beckley, for not quite as long.
   148. karlmagnus Posted: December 23, 2011 at 05:49 PM (#4022698)

16. (N/A-13-12-13-13-12-14-15-12-13-11-11-N/A-11-9-12-12-N/A-15-15-N/A-14-N/A-15-13-12-14-15-12-13-12-13-N/A) George van Haltren. Had slipped too far at #44; we need more 90s stars, but he was significantly below Elmer Smith, either as hitter or pitcher.

17. (N/A-12-N/A) Fred Lynn. Underrated, considerably better than Rice or Hernandez. 1960 hits at 130, but bonus for playing CF. TB+BB/PA .531, TB+BB/Outs .791. Lovely player to watch, and absolutely top-drawer at his best.

18. (N/A) Bernie Williams 2336 hits @125. Needs either a bit more quality or a bit more length. Just a smidgen less than Fred Lynn, who was also a CF (and who I’d MUCH rather see in!) TB+BB/PA .533 TB+BB/Outs .815, in a harder hitting era than Lynn.

19. David Cone 2898IP@120 194-126. WS seems to be underrating modern pitchers just as it overrates modern hitters. Not quite Sabes, but better than Tiant and Reuschel. 87PP

20. Albert Belle 1726 hits @143. Short career, not quite Frank Howard but Frank was a little high. TB+BB/PA .597 TB+BB/Outs .896

21. (N/A-14-N/A-15-13-15-N/A-15-N/A) Luis Tiant 229-172. 3486 IP at 114. ERA+ a little low, but W/L good. He’s not top tier, but just a little better than Pierce. Big psychic plus for Red Sox affiliation. Looking at Reuschel, a little overplaced so have slipped him down. 84PP

22. (N/A-13-15-N/A-15-15-N/A) Vic Willis Had slipped too far.

23. Gavvy Cravath 1134 hits@150. Add 50% to career and deduct 5 points for more years in early career makes him 1699 hits @145, still a very short career, but comparable to Hack. TB+BB/PA .527, TB+BB/Outs .835.

24. (N/A-7-13-11-13-14-14-14-N/A-15-15-15-N/A-14-15-15-15-N/A-
14-N/A-15-15-N/A-15-N/A-14-N/A-15-14-N/A) Hack Wilson. TB+BB/PA = .588, TB+BB/Outs = .954, OPS+ 144. (he does appear to have known about BB, unlike some others.) Very short career, but quality too good to ignore.

25. Rick Reuschel. 214-191, 3548IP@114. Tough to put him far from Tiant, who had a better W/L, but I now realized I was overvaluing Tiant a bit because of Red Sox affiliation. 85PP

26. (N/A-14-14-N/A) Chuck Klein. Shortish career but very good one. Similar player to Beckwith, beats Hack on career length, but Hack was better. TB+BB/PA .575, TB+BB/Outs .909, but only 2076 hits. OPS+137.

27. Indian Bob Johnson. Very similar career to Klein but infinitesimally less good. TB+BB/PA .569, TB+BB/Outs .890., only 2051 hits. OPS+138

28. Brian Downing. 2099 hits at 122 plus he caught about 1/3 of his games. TB+BB/PA.487 TB+BB/Outs.741

29. Tony Perez. Close to Staub but below him. 2732 hits at 122. TB+BB/PA .502, TB+BB/Outs .731.
30. Bill Madlock.
31. Toby Harrah
32. Ben Taylor.
33. Jim Kaat 77PP
34. Orlando Cepeda
35. Norm Cash
36. Jim Rice
37. (N/A-12-12-14-N/A) Tony Lazzeri
38. Cesar Cedeno
39. (N/A-14-N/A-15-N/A) Sam Rice
40. John Olerud With 2239 hits@128 playing 1B he’s somewhere about here.
41. Lou Brock
42. Mickey Vernon
43. Thurmon Munson
44. Sal Maglie.
45. (N/A) Burleigh Grimes.
46. (N/A) Heinie Manush
47. (N/A-9-10-10-13-N/A) Mike Tiernan
48. Bob Elliott
49. (N/A-9-12-11-14-13-14-12-11-12-13-11-11-9-9-13-14-12-14-14-N/A) Levi Meyerle.
50. Chuck Finley Obscure and slightly mediocre 200-173, but 3197 IP @115. Just below Reuschel and Tiant. Down a bit – I think 120ERA+ has got easier since ’90. 80PP

51. Jack Clark. As good as Reggie Smith but not for as long. 1826 hits@137OPS+, TB+BB .529, TB+BB/Outs .845
52. (12-15-N/A-11-10-12-10-10-9-8-11-12-10-10-8-8-14-15-13-15-15-N/A) Harry Wright.
53. Harold Baines 2866 hits @120. TB+BB/PA .511 TB+BB/Outs .757. Lower than Staub and Perez.
54. Dennis Martinez 3999IP@106, 245-193. A lesser Kaat.
55. Jimmy Key
56. Dave Parker.
57. (N/A-10-9-8-7-6-7-8-5-12-10-10-N/A-10-8-11-11-N/A) Jimmy Ryan
58. Gene Tenace
59. Kiki Cuyler
60. Deacon McGuire
61. Jerry Koosman.
62. Boog Powell
63. Ken Singleton.
64. Bucky Walters 198-160, 3104IP at 115 certainly doesn’t make the ballot, but should be on the consideration set, so here he is. Less than Tiant or Reuschel. 78PP
65. Sal Bando.
66. Jim Fregosi.
67. Jack Quinn
68. Juan Gonzalez
69. Tony Mullane
70. Ron Cey
71. Jose Canseco.
72. Pie Traynor
73. Jim McCormick
74. Dick Redding. My punt is 3200 innings at 114 ERA+ for a record of 207-159, i.e. same quality as Chris but a little shorter. About here looks right – a little below Grimes (longer career) and Maglie (better quality.)
75. Joe Judge
76. Spotswood Poles.
77. Buddy Bell.
78. Larry Doyle
79. Kirby Puckett
80. (N/A)Tony Fernandez. Turn him into an outfielder and he’s Kirby, so here he is. 2276 hits @101, TB+BB/PA .438 TB+BB/Outs .634
81. Ellis Burks 2107 hits @126; TB+BB/PA .548 TB+BB/Outs .820. Just within consideration set, rather than just outside it. Not that it matters.
82. Curt Simmons
83. Waite Hoyt.
84. Harry Hooper.
85. Vada Pinson
86. Gil Hodges
87. Jules Thomas.
88. Rico Carty.
89. Wilbur Cooper
90. Bruce Petway.
91. Jack Clements
92. Frank Tanana
93. Don Mattingley.
94. Orel Hershiser 204-150, 3130 IP@112. Not quite enough
95. Bill Monroe
96. Herb Pennock
97. Chief Bender
98. Ed Konetchy
99. Al Oliver
100. Darryl Strawberry.
101. Jesse Tannehill
102. Bobby Veach
103. Chet Lemon.
104. Lave Cross
105. Tommy Leach. Inferior to Childs, even if he’d played 3B his whole career, which he didn’t. Overall, Cross was better, too (2645@100 translates to 2645@ almost 120 with position bonus.) 2143 hits @109, which translates to at most 119 when you add say 50% of a 1900 3B bonus of 20. Not close.
106. Tom York

OFF: Phil Rizzuto. Not close—hugely overrated. OPS+ of 93, and not a particularly long career, even with war credit.

Lee Smith 71-92 +478 saves. 1289IP @132. Only 54PP so drops off consideration set.
   149. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 23, 2011 at 08:57 PM (#4022800)
Righty or lefty?

Not sure yet . . . seems like the right hand goes in her mouth more often and she uses that one to hold her toys (which she just started doing this week), so I'm leaning righty . . .
   150. DL from MN Posted: December 23, 2011 at 10:51 PM (#4022824)
Maybe you can teach her to switch hit
   151. . . . . . . Posted: December 23, 2011 at 11:20 PM (#4022835)
General themes:

I put significant weight in contemporary opinion, especially as we go back in time. That being said, I'm willing to vote for "surprise" candidates if, IMO, an airtight case has been made that contemporary was wrong.

I think we are short a few integration-era black guys, and definitely short pitchers.

With regards to pitchers, I strongly weight peak, since (with some rare and rewarded exceptions) pitcher longevity seems so arbitrary, and career focused voting misses out on so many of the greatest established true-talent peaks.

I treat true-talent as a factor - i.e, I will give a bump to a guy who would be great on a neutral field. I am less interested in "actual" value than true talent as we can best estimate from statistics.

I am liberal with war credit.

I generally use Dan R.'s work as a baseline.

1 - Rizzuto. Citing his career OPS+ seems meaningless to me. About as good a peak as a light hitting SS can have, and benefits enormously from war credit once the malaria year is taken into account.

2 - Reuschel. Was hiding in plain sight. I don't like that no one "realized" it when he was around, but I have been convinced of the merit.

3 - Newcombe. Needs every adjustment but deserves it. Great peak.

4 - Campaneris. I buy the numbers discussed by Dan and I give a bump to 70's SS because I don't think we can assume the low replacement level was madness.

5 - Pesky. War credit. Very high SS peak.

6 - Luque. I am convinced by Dan R. 's argument that I was overlooking him.

7 - Palmeiro. With disdain.

8 - Gooden. With my peak overweight, his 1984-1985 is so good that it outweighs the mediocrity that followed.

9 - Tiant. I think this is higher than I used to have him, but pitchers seem underrepresented. A clear step above Cone/Grimes, but without the peak of Gooden.

10 - Ellie Howard. Needs every adjustment like Newcombe, but also like Newcombe I think was a victim of race and being blocked behind Berra. I think if born 20 year before or after he's a shoo-in.

11 - Cone. Not much to say. Very good. Not great. Slim pickins down here.

12 - Grimes. See Cone. Filling in the pitchers glut. Better peak than I would've thought. Dung a bit on true talent rationale.

13 - Cravath. Not as a good true talent, obviously, and ranked accordingly. I find it hard to believe the D was THAT bad and the man could hit.

14 - B. Williiams. Sort of a rich mans Dale Murphy. Should've been moved to LF after his shoulder gave out.

15 - Dean. A great pitching peak. Ive always wondered if he pitched to the score. Back then, I find it more plausible. Contemporary opinion gets weight here.

Off ballot:
Clarkson - belongs in the Minor League Hall of Merit alongside Dallas McPherson, Brandon Wood, etc. A joke.

Olerud - Meh.
   152. . . . . . . Posted: December 23, 2011 at 11:22 PM (#4022836)
Salmon - Meh.

Walters - Defense mirage.

Redding - Regress to the mean.
   153. DL from MN Posted: December 24, 2011 at 01:51 AM (#4022887)
If Bus Clarkson is a joke then Willard Brown is a travesty. I'll take the shortstop over the poor fielding outfielder with less bat.
   154. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 24, 2011 at 02:16 AM (#4022891)
I really, really like 'zop's ballot.
   155. . . . . . . Posted: December 24, 2011 at 10:24 AM (#4022950)
If Bus Clarkson is a joke then Willard Brown is a travesty. I'll take the shortstop over the poor fielding outfielder with less bat.

Oo, I never thought I'd see the "If High Pockets Kelley is in, then [...] is surely qualified!" argument in the HoM context. How deliciously ironic.
   156. DL from MN Posted: December 24, 2011 at 01:31 PM (#4022956)
So you do believe that Willard Brown is one of our worst mistakes?
   157. . . . . . . Posted: December 24, 2011 at 02:18 PM (#4022961)
Nope. Contemporary opinion is more favorable to him - he's hardly a "discovery". Wouldn't be in my PHoM though. But when you're half the candidate of Willard Brown, you're a joke, which is why I'm more likely to get in the HoM than Double-A Clarkson, thank god.
   158. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: December 24, 2011 at 02:25 PM (#4022962)
I disagree with 'zop that Clarkson is a joke the way that, say, Ginger Beaumont is. But the combination of his exclusion from the NgL pantheon, the fact that MLB teams passed him over at a time when they could and did sign plenty of other black players, and the dependence of his MLE case on a Bondsian late-career peak is enough to keep him well off my ballot.

MLE's are one piece of the puzzle. When they fit with the others, as in Dick Lundy's case, I'll lead the charge. When they don't, I'll pass.
   159. DL from MN Posted: December 24, 2011 at 03:59 PM (#4022988)
exclusion from the NgL pantheon

You keep repeating this as if it is true. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence that Bus Clarkson was a terrific player, it just happened to be in Mexico.

Clarkson outhit Willard Brown at several stops. Clarkson played SS while Willard Brown - anecdotally - played outfield defense that ranged from bad to indifferent. They both were excluded by the slow pace of integration and both "failed" in the majors. I think he's twice the candidate of Willard Brown.
   160. Alex King Posted: December 27, 2011 at 07:14 PM (#4023954)
I'm really sorry about missing the election this year. Since September, I've been swamped with work, and things only got more intense in December. While I might have been able to pull together a ballot from last year, I'm also pursuing a major revision of my system, replacing TotalZone with Michael Humphreys' DRA. Frankly, I'm not completely comfortable with my preliminary rankings, and I didn't feel like I had sufficient time to discuss them and try to justify them here. Add that to the Seamheads' Negro Leagues database, which I didn't have time to fully consider, but which may have made a large difference on my view of Dick Redding, for example. I'll post my rankings in the discussion thread so you guys can have a look at them/suggest improvements, but there's no way I can produce a high-quality ballot by tomorrow.

EDIT: On second thought, I should read Wizardry first. The main problem that I have right now is that a number of 19th-century/early 20th century position players have shot up in my rankings (Leach, Burns, Hooper, Griffin, Bancroft), and my rankings look significantly tilted towards the early 20th-century. Hopefully things will cool off in January and I will be able to conduct a more thorough revision of my rankings.
   161. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: December 28, 2011 at 12:05 AM (#4024094)
The standard deviation of DRA increases as you back in time. Part of that is because fielding really was more important back then, and the rest is giving credit that should otherwise go to pitchers but is difficult to disentangle. I believe some regression is in order.
   162. DL from MN Posted: December 28, 2011 at 12:30 AM (#4024102)
Alex - I think you have probably already created a high quality ballot. I think you're suffering from perfectionism here. I'd rather have your 80% confidence answer than 100% of many other people.
   163. Alex King Posted: December 28, 2011 at 02:08 AM (#4024143)
DL/162: Thanks, but given the issue that Dan raises in 161, my ballot just wouldn't be fair to post-deadball era players, and I just don't have a very good grasp on where Leach/Burns/Hooper/Griffin should be. Fortunately, the fix should be fairly easy, but it will still probably take a few weeks to fix my rankings. Given more time, I can also go back and take a more thorough look at the Negro League stats, which should be very helpful.
   164. Howie Menckel Posted: December 28, 2011 at 02:59 AM (#4024157)
I agree that I think your best ballot will be a good one, given your efforts.

Ain't none of us here who get it all right - and that's from a guy who has never missed a vote.

The whole idea is that our collective wisdom trumps any one of us. It's worked pretty well so far, I think.
   165. Mike Humphreys Posted: December 28, 2011 at 05:06 AM (#4024207)

My latest studies suggest that DRA already regresses fielding value for all time frames too much on a _career_ basis. The reason is that the version in Wizardry regresses single-season ratings in such a way that 'looks' right, but the cumulative effect for someone who is genuinely good or bad is to understate impact. As to earlier fielders, I think it is an individual player variance issue. The total variance in team-level run prevention explained by fielding versus pitching is roughly the same going back in time.

By the way, I was pleased that Wizardry was included in the following list:
   166. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: December 28, 2011 at 02:04 PM (#4024255)
Alex King, if you post a prelim we can flag any inconsistencies/factual errors...the most important thing for the credibility of the project is maximizing the number of voters who take the HoM seriously, which you clearly do. As DL from MN rightly notes, on a "wisdom of crowds" principle we'll be closer to the "true" best selections with your best educated guess than we will if you bow out. I.e., you are harming the HoM by abstaining! No pressure...;)
   167. karlmagnus Posted: December 28, 2011 at 02:28 PM (#4024269)
Alex, while I think I've given the HOM ballot adequate attention over the years, this year's was just a very rapid update, for the same reasons as you've had. So I second the request to post your 80% ballot; it will be better than mine!
   168. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 28, 2011 at 02:39 PM (#4024277)
Put me in the camp who agrees that I'd like to Alex vote.

If you think you are being slightly unfair to modern players, nudge them up slightly, just using your intuition.

I do this already - I know my system is slightly overrating modern pitchers, from around 1985ish onward. This is mainly because I adjust SP innings based on league norms. So I just intuitively drop them back slightly, until I can figure out how to systematically fix it.

I think it has to do with the fact that the modern pitchers are having longer careers because they are being used less in each season. But I haven't been able to nail it down.

But the point is - post your ballot as best you can!
   169. Alex King Posted: December 28, 2011 at 03:56 PM (#4024314)
I would be happy to post a ballot that uses the same methodology as last year. Unfortunately I'm hopping on a plane in 10 minutes, and I won't have internet access--I can get something together and posted by 8 pm eastern though, with explanations/justifications.
   170. Carl Goetz Posted: December 28, 2011 at 04:18 PM (#4024327)
I'm interested in getting 'Wizardry'. Can someone who's read it tell me if it has alot of tables and charts? I basically want to know if I can easily read it on my Kindle or if I need to bebuying the old fashion paper book. Charts and statistics don't show up well on the Kindle.
   171. sunnyday2 Posted: December 28, 2011 at 04:29 PM (#4024336)
1) I really enjoyed reading fra paolo's ballot. Some of you old timers will understand why. His explanation of his values and method was exactly validated in some of his ballot selections. Very nice.

2) Can we just have a separate vote someday about the biggest "joke" a) electees and b) vote-getters. And then everybody will be banned from using the word "joke" to describe anybody except the winners.

But right now this very minute, sans such a vote, can we ban the phrase "you are a joke." Was that meant to apply to the candidate or the voter? If the latter, the commenter should be banned.
   172. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 28, 2011 at 05:41 PM (#4024402)
I have the book Carl. There is plenty of text in there, but the back half of the book does have a lot of tables interspersed.

I just got an iPad - I've been debating adding an electronic version but paying for the same book twice seems crazy.

Can you preview it on the Kindle? There's a chart on page 10, that if is readable would be a good example.
   173. Mark Donelson Posted: December 28, 2011 at 06:13 PM (#4024429)
Was that meant to apply to the candidate or the voter? If the latter, the commenter should be banned.

Seemed pretty clear from context that the candidate (Bus Clarkson) was meant:

But when you're half the candidate of Willard Brown, you're a joke,...

Also, I twelfth the motion that Alex post his ballot, perfected system or no. :)
   174. Carl Goetz Posted: December 28, 2011 at 09:43 PM (#4024592)
Joe, are the tables in the back examples? Or are they career stats for individual players? If its the latter, I'll probably just get the traditional book for convenient reference. Thanks for your help.
   175. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 28, 2011 at 11:01 PM (#4024681)
Clarkson - belongs in the Minor League Hall of Merit alongside Dallas McPherson, Brandon Wood, etc. A joke

   176. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 28, 2011 at 11:04 PM (#4024684)
Put me in the camp who agrees that I'd like to Alex vote.

   177. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 28, 2011 at 11:32 PM (#4024709)
Talked to John, and theorioleway, we'd love to have you do the plaques if you want.

Yeah, the plaques have become a drudgery after all of these years, even if it's only once a year now. Go at it, theorioleway!

If you could try to keep them in a similar style, that'd be helpful.

Maybe post your drafts on the player's threads for a review before move them 'live'? Does that work?

Probably sending them to rawagman and then rawagman e-mailing them to me would work, Joe.
   178. Daryn Posted: December 29, 2011 at 12:47 AM (#4024755)
I value career over peak, but can be entranced by a great prime. I look at traditional statistics, ERA+, OPS+, Win Shares and Ink.

1. Rafael Palmeiro -- my ideal non-consensus candidate -- long career, great counting stats.

2. Burleigh Grimes – as a career voter, I have difficulty seeing the vast difference others see between Rixey and Faber (both now elected) and Grimes.

3. Dick Redding – probably the 6th best blackball pitcher of all-time (behind, at least, Williams and Paige and likely behind the Fosters and Brown), and that is good enough for me.

4. Tommy John – not too far from Grimes, a step above Kaat. No credit for the surgery, but medical pioneers (even the guinea pigs) get my respect.

5. Lou Brock – I think the post season value and the tremendous speed puts him ahead of the similar long-career peakless Beckley, who, of course, is now in our Hall.

6. Tony Perez – 34th all-time in total bases, no black ink – the weight of his career totals push him above what otherwise looks like a definitional bubble candidate’s resume.

7. Addie Joss – I don’t like short careers much, but I cannot ignore the best WHIP of all-time, the second best all-time ERA, the 12th best ERA+ and the nice winning percentage.

8. Fred McGriff -- most would agree with me that he is definitely better than Rice, with his substantially longer peak (though many of those people would have both 50 spots lower). I really like the consistent shape of his career. It doesn't bother me that he plied his trade among many other great firstbasemen (see my comment on Tiant).

9. Jim Rice – I like the 77-79 peak. I like the runs created in his ten+ year prime and I like his overall totals. I do adjust raw totals significantly, but I think people are holding Fenway too much against him. From 1975 to 1986, Rice led the American League in total games played, at-bats, runs scored, hits, homers, RBIs, slugging percentage, total bases, extra-base hits, go-ahead RBIs, multi-hit games, and outfield assists.

10. Dave Parker – I think he is very similar to Rice, but I like Rice’s peak better. Their career counting stats impress me.

11. Albert Belle – I thought I would love him. What a peak! I had hoped the peaksters would put him higher, but as a career voter, this is as high as he can get for me. Pretty clearly behind Walker.

12. Luis Tiant – I don’t have a problem with 11+ pitchers from the 70s making our Hall. Talent isn’t evenly distributed and I have no problem with acknowledging value attached to favourable conditions.

13. Sam Rice -- 2987 hits speaks to me, but not even the best starch on the ballot.

14. Orlando Cepeda – He is a very difficult choice for me because he isn’t significantly better than Howard, Colavito and Cash, but the slight difference means 20+ spaces on this ballot.

15. Pie Traynor -- I think he would have been a multiple time all-star.

16. Harold Baines – 32nd all time in total bases, the DHing keeps him well behind Perez. I see him as a better candidate than Staub.

17. Jim Kaat
18. Lance Parrish
19. Jack Morris
20. Bernie Williams
21. John Olerud
22. Aparicio -- those 1000 extra outs separate him from Fox, as does the poorer defence.
23. Rusty Staub
24. George Van Haltren – 40 wins, 2500 hits, never dominated. Pretty good adjusted win shares.
25. Jimmy Ryan – 2500 hits, good speed, lots of runs. Hurt by timelining.
26. Dizzy Dean
27. Tommy Leach – 300+ WS has to mean something.

Walters -- He is about sixth of my off-ballot pitchers, which puts him in the high 40s.

Cravath -- I like the idea of Cravath but don't trust the translations enough to put him in my top 40.

Cone -- he isn't much behind Joss or Dean, but I could say that about a handful of players. There are razor thin differences separating the 250th best player from the 350th best player and I don't pretend to know where to draw the line.

Scooter -- I don't see him as a top 50 candidate, but I am sure I am undervaluing middle infield defence from his era. I get mocked for having Aparicio so high, but I'll take his longevity (and, I believe, a better glove) over the 11 points of OPS+ he cedes to Rizzutto.

Duffy -- I used to have him right beside Van Haltren and Ryan on my ballot and then I dropped him a bit. Either way, he is just outside my top 25.

Reuschel -- I like Cone better than Reuschel. Resuchel is a bit of a tweener for me. He doesn't get dragged in by the long career like John and Grimes and didn't perform as well as Brown or Joss or Tiant. I guess the highest I could put him is just behind Tiant who is a good career match for him, but Tiant's single season peaks impress me. Like Cone and Walters, he is somewhere between 30 and 50 on my ballot.

Newcombe -- really not in my top 50. I don't see what everyone else is seeing.
   179. Alex King Posted: December 29, 2011 at 12:53 AM (#4024762)
aWAR refers to Baseball-reference WAR adjusted for season length and WW2, or WAR estimates that I’ve created for Negro Leagues players. To determine my ballot, I look at each player's top aWAR, career aWAR, top 3 seasons, top 5 seasons, top 5 consecutive seaons, seasons above 2 aWAR and seasons above 5 aWAR. Then I converted each category into a z-score based on my consideration set's average and standard deviation, then weighted and added the z-scores together. This methodology is the same as I used last year. Right now I’m significantly revising my methodology, replacing TotalZone with Humphreys’ DRA; however, these new rankings are not ready for prime-time yet, so I’m sticking with my old system. This system is flawed, but not nearly as biased as my new rankings are.
1. Ned Williamson. Though a few WAR off the best careers (61 compared to Palmeiro’s 68), Williamson nevertheless has the best 3-year and 5-year peaks, and is second in the number of seasons with more than 5 WAR (7, tied with Bando, behind Reuschel at 8). Put that all together, and Williamson edges out Bell and Reuschel for the #1 spot. A lot of Williamson’s value comes from his defense: in addition to Sean Smith’s estimate that he was worth +87 runs in about 5000 PA (comparable to the top-fielding 3B of other eras), Williamson had an outstanding defensive reputation, and led the league in traditional fielding stats many times. Given that Williamson’s defense garnered praise from his contemporaries, I am quite comfortable with bbWAR’s favorable assessment of his defense.
2. Buddy Bell. Among my three top career candidates (Bell, Reuschel, and Palmeiro, all of whom have similar aWAR career totals ranging from 64 to 68), Bell and Reuschel have significantly better peaks than Palmeiro, and Bell has a slightly better peak than Reuschel, driven by his outstanding 1981 season, when he was worth 6.2 WAR, which extrapolates to 9.8 aWAR over a full season. Bell was an outstanding defensive 3B (+176 TZ for his career) at a time when 3B was a historically difficult position, played by the likes of Brooks Robinson, Graig Nettles, Aurelio Rodriguez, and Doug Rader.
3. Rick Reuschel. Reuschel’s aWAR numbers are quite similar to Kevin Brown’s, though Reuschel contributed a little less in his top 3 and top 5 seasons. Reuschel’s comparability to Brown bolsters his case for election, as does his combination of 7 seasons of >5 WAR and 14 seasons of >2 WAR, a rare combination among this consideration set, where most candidates tilt towards either peak or career value. Reuschel’s ERA and ERA+ are depressed by horrific defensive support, which Sean Smith estimates at -66 runs for his career.
4. Rafael Palmeiro. Lots of career value but very little peak. Despite the highest career value of anyone in my consideration set, Palmeiro is only about average in terms of peak; he has the lowest peak value of anyone on my ballot.
5. Sal Bando. Another 70’s 3B with a lot of value from the position adjustment. Bando wasn’t as good a fielder as Bell, but was a better hitter. Bando also accumulates a lot of value between baserunning (+11 runs), reached on error (+17 runs) and hitting into double plays (+5 runs). Bando also had a fantastic peak, with 8 seasons of 5 or more aWAR, the best among the consideration set.
6. Hilton Smith. See Hilton Smith thread for details on my estimation of Smith’s aWAR (essentially I imitated Dr. Chaleeko’s methods as closely as I could, using the HOF data). Smith profiles as a peak-heavy pitcher with about 60 career aWAR. Smith also derives a significant amount of his value from his bat. Smith has a very interesting career arc, pitching from age 28 to age 41 and peaking in his early 30s. Smith’s career shape somewhat resembles Dazzy Vance’s. Smith moves ahead of Redding based on reputation; I'm docking Redding slightly because the 2006 HOF Committee (who I think did a pretty good job) did not induct Redding.
7. Dick Redding. I estimated Redding’s aWAR from the WS MLEs posted in his thread. This translation sees Redding as a peak-heavy player with 58 career aWAR and top seasons of 10.5 (1915), 8.8 (1916), and 6.4 (1911).
8. David Cone. I have Cone here just below Smith and Redding, both of whom had similar career value but with somewhat more peak value than Cone. Cone also lost a significant chunk of (apparent) value to the strike, as his two top seasons by aWAR came in 1994 and 1995.
9. Hugh Duffy. Duffy, Van Haltren, and Ryan all profile as similar hitters (between +300 and +350 runs above average) but, according to Sean Smith, Duffy was by far the best of the three in fielding and baserunning, picking up over 100 runs on the other two. As a result, Duffy makes my ballot, and the other two do not.
10. John Olerud. It looks like few others share my high opinion of Olerud. Total Zone rates Olerud’s defense quite highly (+97 runs) though he gives half of it back on baserunning, reached on error, and grounded into double plays. Given Olerud’s excellent defensive reputation, I am comfortable with TZ’s assessment of his defense, and by extension, his placement on my ballot.
11. Eddie Cicotte. Most peak-heavy player on my ballot (not the best peak, but the best peak in comparison to his career). Cicotte benefits quite significantly from short-season credit for 1918 and 1919. He ends up with two seasons of greater than 9 aWAR, and is near the top of my ballot in many peak-based measures. I don’t give Cicotte post-1920 credit, nor do I debit him for participation in the Black Sox scandal.
12. Luis Tiant. Comparable to the Cone/Smith/Redding group in terms of career value, but far below them in terms of peak. Tiant also gets a nice boost from having 6 seasons greater than 5 aWAR, and 14 seasons greater than 2 aWAR.
13. Gavvy Cravath. I give Cravath partial MLE credit for 1905 and 1906, and full credit for 1907 and 1909-1911. I based the beginning of Cravath’s career on the Red Sox’ outfield situation at the time, assuming that, had Cravath been playing in a farm system rather than the independent minor leagues, he would have debuted when the parent club needed him. I chose the Red Sox because he made his actual debut with them in 1908. This model of Cravath’s debut has him break into the majors at age 24 (100 PA), play fairly regularly at age 25 (400 PA), and play full-time at age 26. This MLE produces career and peak statistics quite similar to Tiant's, though Cravath has significantly fewer seasons of greater than 5 WAR or greater than 2 WAR.
14. Frank Chance. Another high peak, low career value player. Chance's peak is comparable to those of Bell, Bando, and Williamson, but he has the second-lowest career value of anyone on my ballot, after Cicotte.
15. Frank Tanana. Just ahead of Silver King and George Scales for the last ballot spot. Tanana has most of his value concentrated in his top 3 seasons, and he was a pretty impressive pitcher at the very beginning of his career.

16. Silver King. Discussed earlier in last year’s ballot discussion; comes up just below Tanana for this ballot.
17. George Scales. aWAR estimates from his MLEs show Scales in a pretty favorable light, even though I debit him significantly for poor fielding and baserunning. Scales gets a lot of credit for being a pretty good hitter who was able to play 2B/3B (though not very well) for most of his career. Using straight MLEs would put Scales ahead of Tanana and King, but I’ve docked him slightly for his lack of a reputation as a top Negro Leagues player, placing him just below King and Scales.
18. Chet Brewer. I’ve created some MLEs for Brewer based on his HOF numbers; they show a career arc quite comparable to Frank Tanana’s. I’ll post more details on his thread; essentially, I tried to imitate Dr. Chaleeko's methods.
19. Kevin Appier
20. Tommy Bond

37. Phil Rizzuto. Rizzuto doesn’t miss by a whole lot; the difference between Rizzuto and Tiant (#12) is less than the difference between Tiant and Cone (#8). I give Rizzuto war credit for 1943-1945 based on his 1941-1942 and 1947 play, but I don’t give him extra credit for 1946 or MLE credit for 1940. In the end, Rizzuto profiles as Cravath light: about the same career value, but slightly less peak value than Cravath.
56. Tommy Leach. aWAR is unimpressed by Leach’s peak, and his career value, at 55 aWAR, isn’t enough to get him close to my ballot.
63. Fred McGriff. Another player who isn’t particularly close to the ballot in peak or career aWAR. McGriff could hit, but cost his teams an estimated 77 runs over his career between fielding, baserunning, reaching on error, and grounding into double plays.
93. Bucky Walters. Walters has an outstanding peak, comparable to those of the top candidates on my ballot. But Walters’ career value falls far short of my standards; in fact, if elected, he would have the lowest career aWAR of any starting pitcher by a substantial margin. Since I consider both peak and career value, Walters falls well short of my ballot.
94. Bernie Williams. TZ really hates his fielding (-118 career total), pushing Williams below 50 WAR for his career. With no season better than 6.7 aWAR, Williams’ peak cannot save him from a ranking well below the top 15.
   180. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 29, 2011 at 01:02 AM (#4024766)
The election is now over. Results will be posted in a few hours.
   181. DL from MN Posted: December 29, 2011 at 01:19 AM (#4024773)
We held for 4 ballots then...
   182. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 29, 2011 at 01:26 AM (#4024780)
That's great. More than a 10% boost.
   183. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 29, 2011 at 01:55 AM (#4024792)
That's great. More than a 10% boost.

Agreed. 37 ballots sounds better than 33. :-)

For next year, we probably should remind everybody about the election one month before the start of it. That way, it would give everybody a better chance to prepare for it, IMO.
   184. theorioleway Posted: December 29, 2011 at 02:30 AM (#4024811)
John Murphy: the plaques have been posted in the respective players pages if you want to grab them before 2012 goes up...
   185. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 29, 2011 at 01:05 PM (#4024975)
John Murphy: the plaques have been posted in the respective players pages if you want to grab them before 2012 goes up...

Didn't know they were there. I'll take a look at them within the next few days. Thanks!
   186. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 29, 2011 at 02:54 PM (#4025025)
For next year, we probably should remind everybody about the election one month before the start of it. That way, it would give everybody a better chance to prepare for it, IMO.


I'm adding reminders to my calendar for:

1) Reminder to group about the election - October 22 . . . will coincide nicely with the real season ending.

2) Election starts November 19 - this gives everyone Thanksgiving weekend (which is the earliest possible) to discuss/prepare and ramp us up

3) Election ends December 5 . . . I kind of like going mid-week like we did this year. Gives us a chance to extend to 12/12 if necessary, but hopefully we won't have to.

4) February 13 - finish the discussion of calibrating the number of electees.

Does that work?
   187. rawagman Posted: December 29, 2011 at 03:41 PM (#4025056)
theorioleway - if you want to write up the plaques for this year's three as well, please email me the drafts directly -
   188. theorioleway Posted: December 29, 2011 at 05:50 PM (#4025183)
Rawagman: will do.
   189. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 29, 2011 at 06:56 PM (#4025252)

I'm adding reminders to my calendar for:

1) Reminder to group about the election - October 22 . . . will coincide nicely with the real season ending.

2) Election starts November 19 - this gives everyone Thanksgiving weekend (which is the earliest possible) to discuss/prepare and ramp us up

3) Election ends December 5 . . . I kind of like going mid-week like we did this year. Gives us a chance to extend to 12/12 if necessary, but hopefully we won't have to.

4) February 13 - finish the discussion of calibrating the number of electees.

Does that work?

Sounds good to me, Joe.
   190. DL from MN Posted: December 29, 2011 at 11:54 PM (#4025485)
Sounds good here also. I'll try to wrap up the MMP election by the 19th and we can start another in December.
   191. theorioleway Posted: January 02, 2012 at 10:39 PM (#4027299)
Rawagman: You should be receiving the plaque drafts via email. Let me know if you don't.
   192. theorioleway Posted: January 12, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4035516)
Just a friendly reminder about plaques needing to be posted/added to positional totals (at the least 2011 if not 2012)...imagine if in Cooperstown this year Blyleven and Alomar's plaques weren't up yet...
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