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

Monday, December 19, 2016

2018 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion

Vladimir Guerrero (267), Sammy Sosa (255), Luis Tiant (189), Jeff Kent (179), Vic Willis (161), Kenny Lofton (151), Bobby Bonds (133), Ben Taylor (130), Buddy Bell (130) and Tommy Bridges (106) will be the top 10 returnees for 2018.

Jorge Posada (95), Bob Johnson (86), Urban Shocker (80), Dick Redding (79), Phil Rizzuto (79), Wally Schang (79) and Sal Bando (68) rounded out the top 20.

2018 - (December 4 - December 18, 2017) - elect 4

Name               HOFm HOFs Yrs WAR  WAR7 JAWS
Chipper Jones       180  70   19 85.0 46.6 65.8
Jim Thome           156  57   22 72.9 41.5 57.2
Scott Rolen          99  40   17 70.0 43.5 56.8
Andruw Jones        109  34   17 62.8 46.4 54.6
Johan Santana        82  35   12 51.4 44.8 48.1
Johnny Damon         90  45   18 56.0 32.8 44.4
Jamie Moyer          56  39   25 50.4 33.2 41.8
Carlos Zambrano      30  23   12 44.6 39.0 41.8
Omar Vizquel        120  42   24 45.3 26.6 36.0
Chris Carpenter      70  26   15 34.5 29.6 32.0
Livan Hernandez      41  16   17 31.1 27.8 29.4
Orlando Hudson       20  18   11 30.9 27.2 29.1
Kevin Millwood       34  20   16 29.4 24.8 27.1
Kerry Wood           24  14   14 27.7 25.0 26.4
Carlos Lee           78  35   14 28.2 23.4 25.8
Ben Sheets           19  11   10 23.4 22.3 22.8
Jack Wilson          12  16   12 23.5 20.9 22.2
Hideki Matsui        36  21   10 21.3 21.2 21.3
Aubrey Huff          30  20   13 20.2 22.5 21.3
Adam Kennedy         12  16   14 21.0 20.4 20.7
Jeff Suppan          11   9   17 17.4 18.3 17.8
Carl Pavano          16   6   14 16.9 18.5 17.7
Francisco Cordero    77   9   14 17.2 14.6 15.9
Miguel Batista       10   3   18 12.7 15.9 14.3
Jason Isringhausen   71   7   16 13.2 12.2 12.7
Brian Fuentes        48   9   12 10.7 11.3 11.0
Brad Lidge           48  10   11  8.2 12.4 10.3
Scott Podsednik      15  15   11  6.9  7.8  7.4
Guillermo Mota       13   7   14  6.3  7.6  7.0
JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 19, 2016 at 09:12 PM | 222 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   201. Rob_Wood Posted: April 28, 2017 at 04:47 PM (#5444517)
There is no way you are going to get me to swallow that Tommy Bond (with 5 decent seasons) is more valuable than Barry Bonds because he was able to take the mound and not walk anyone.

My position on this matter is clear. I have voted in each and every Hall of Merit election. Our first election was 1898 and our latest was 2017, making a grand total of 120 separate elections. In each election a voter votes for his top 15 players. 120 * 15 = 1,800. So since this project began, I have listed 1,800 names on my collective body of Hall of Merit election ballots.

In none of my 1,800 ballot slots have I ever listed the name of Tommy Bond. And I will not be including the name of Tommy Bond on any subsequent future ballot regardless of the information I posted above.

I don't know how I can make it any clearer. WAR is a problematic stat for 19th century pitchers. I will repeat it a thousand times if need be. As CPASR is 100% hitched to WAR, CPASR is a problematic stat for 19th century pitchers. I included them in the above lists for completeness purposes only. If you'd like to do what I do, you can mentally cross out any 19th century pitcher you see on the list and pretend that you never saw those names or figures.

Please don't throw the CPASR stat into the dustbin simply because you believe that WAR for 19th century pitchers are silly.
   202. Rob_Wood Posted: April 30, 2017 at 03:10 PM (#5445149)
I have calculated the CPASR for the additional players that Bleed the Freak suggested.

Bobby Mathews       2.175 (19th century pitcher, ignore?)
Charlie Buffinton   1.410 (19th century pitcher, ignore?)
John Clapp          0.706
Dave Orr            0.630
Jack Rowe           0.622
Orator Shafer       0.589
Abner Dalrymple     0.488
Mickey Tettleton    0.428
Del Crandall        0.408
Darren Daulton      0.379
Brian McCann*       0.360
Tug McGraw          0.323
Doug Jones          0.320

   203. Bleed the Freak Posted: April 30, 2017 at 07:02 PM (#5445302)
Nice turnaround time Rob!, 11 others I have with solid ratings in Baseball-Reference WAR:
Davy Force
Paul Goldschmidt
Tip O'Neill
John Morrill
Fred Pfeffer
Whit Wyatt
Levi Meyerle
Gary Peters

3 others:
Tony Pena - catcher
Sparky Lyle - reliever
Manny Machado - active guy
   204. Kiko Sakata Posted: May 02, 2017 at 11:10 PM (#5447321)
Thanks for all of this, Rob! I really like the concept of a sliding replacement value. I definitely like the idea that in-season replacement level is lower than "offseason" (?) replacement level. I also like the concept of pennants added. I need to sit down with your formulas and see if I can figure out a way to make it work with my Player won-lost records. But very interesting food for thought.
   205. Rob_Wood Posted: May 02, 2017 at 11:43 PM (#5447338)
Thanks for the nice comment Kiko. It goes without saying that I am a big fan of all of your stuff. (Ditto for Bleed the Freak.)

One of the most rewarding aspects of the Hall of Merit has been all the great research associated with the project (coming from many great researchers). I don't want to name names for fear that I will overlook somebody, but there has been a heck of a lot of great research. Research on minor-league equivalents, negro-league players, 19th century, scarcity/replacement-levels, pennants-added, and many other key elements of baseball.

Anyway, here is the latest batch of new CPASR for the additional players Bleed the Freak listed just above.
Davy Force        0.667
Levi Meyerle      0.577
Tip O'Neill       0.552
John Morrill      0.492
Paul Goldschmidt* 0.479
Gary Peters       0.424
Whit Wyatt        0.419
Manny Machado*    0.405
Fred Pfeffer      0.367
Sparky Lyle       0.337
Tony Pena         0.295
Of course, any and all questions about the entire body of CPASR results or the methodology are more than welcome.

   206. Bleed the Freak Posted: May 03, 2017 at 04:20 PM (#5447882)
Thanks Rob, if you decide to expand into Kiko's W-L or Baseball Gauge DRA WAR, I have some additional suggested candidates (although they don't fair so well with Baseball Reference WAR:

Kiko: Mike Hampton, Bret Boone, Dick Donovan, Greg Luzinski, Vic Raschi, John Wetteland, Dave Righetti, Jayson Werth, Fritz Peterson, Bob Forsch, Shane Reynolds, Edwin Encarnacion.

Gauge: Mike Marshall, Bob Stanley, Jason Varitek, John Roseboro, Shin Soo-Choo, Kyle Seager, Nelson Cruz, Hank Sauer, Burt Shotton, Dutch Ruether, Happy Felsch, Giancarlo Stanton.
   207. Bleed the Freak Posted: May 05, 2017 at 03:37 PM (#5449481)
Hey Kiko, he's long been elected, but Willie Mays fairs quite poorly in your component 5 measure, hits versus outs on balls in play.
He shows as 19th worst in component 5 fielding wins:;=&y2;=&l=&a=c&n=99&s=c5
Is he really that bad, did he have less chances with the pitching staffs in his career, some mix or otherwise?

And it's a small thing, but an error is coming up when you click on component fielding links:

The links are broke in the fielding article for the components:
Incorrect link:
Correct link:
   208. Bleed the Freak Posted: May 07, 2017 at 08:40 PM (#5450412)
Recent discussion on a fine Negro Leaguer with no thread: Rev Cannady:
   209. Bleed the Freak Posted: May 11, 2017 at 12:02 PM (#5453478)
84. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 09, 2017 at 11:29 PM (#5380804)
Finally, shameless self-promotion: coming in June from McFarland, Player Won-Lost Records in Baseball: Measuring Performance in Context

Hello Kiko, what website do you receive the most $ from, I see a number of different avenues to purchase this?

   210. Kiko Sakata Posted: May 11, 2017 at 08:27 PM (#5453868)
Hello Kiko, what website do you receive the most $ from, I see a number of different avenues to purchase this?


To be perfectly honest, I don't know. If I had to guess, I would guess going through McFarland, but I don't know. By all means, go with whatever makes the most sense for you (i.e., is cheapest?). I'm not really in it for the money: I'm fairly sure the market for this book won't allow me to retire and live off the royalties (now, my second book - kidding).
   211. Kiko Sakata Posted: May 11, 2017 at 08:42 PM (#5453880)
Hey Kiko, he's long been elected, but Willie Mays fairs quite poorly in your component 5 measure, hits versus outs on balls in play.

Comments #209-#210 segue nicely into my answer here. I actually wrote a bit about this very topic in the book. Short answer: it's entirely possible that I'm wrong and the honest answer is that I don't know exactly why Mays fares so poorly. Longer answer / attempt to defend my ratings: buy the book - okay, summary: Mays was very good at Component 5 when he was very young (through 1956, age 25); it's possible that he lost a step or two as he aged and people either didn't notice or didn't care because, you know, he's Willie Freaking Mays out there.
   212. Bleed the Freak Posted: July 02, 2017 at 11:28 AM (#5486884)
Kiko, looks like the publication date has been pushed back for your book, do you know when I can anticipate this being available?
Hoping to have for my birthday ! :)
   213. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 17, 2017 at 09:16 AM (#5494532)
Kiko, looks like the publication date has been pushed back for your book, do you know when I can anticipate this being available?
Hoping to have for my birthday ! :)

Sorry it's taken me two weeks to respond to this. I don't know. I talked to my editor and he said that he has several books that seem to be moving more slowly through production than he expected. I think he's still hoping for some time this summer. He told me I should expect proofs in a week or two. But (a) I don't know how likely that is if things are moving more slowly in general than normal, and (b) this is my first book, so I don't know how long it takes to go from proofs to an actual book. I'm definitely planning to post something - probably here, on Twitter, and on my website - when it's available.
   214. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 01, 2017 at 08:51 PM (#5504767)
Bleed and anybody else interested, I got proofs for my book today! It's scheduled to go to the printer "by August 31st". Here's the page for it on McFarland's website: Player Won-Lost Records in Baseball: Measuring Performance in Context
   215. Kiko Sakata Posted: September 13, 2017 at 11:00 AM (#5530724)
Follow-up to #214. My book has been published. Player Won-Lost Records in Baseball: Measuring Performance in Context, published by McFarland, should be available wherever fine books are sold.
   216. Bleed the Freak Posted: September 16, 2017 at 06:36 PM (#5533145)
Thanks kiko, i placed my order with McFarland.

I was pondering bob lemon the other day, he is a maligned hall of meriter through the lens of baseball reference and baseball gauge, but he is rather impressive with your win loss records. His era is much better than his fip, is this a case where lemon is apportioned more credit for balls in play/inducing weak contact by your methods compared to others?
   217. Kiko Sakata Posted: September 17, 2017 at 12:23 AM (#5533279)
Thanks for ordering the book, Bleed!

Lemon has a few things going for him in my rankings. He was a great hitter - which other systems should include, although BB-Ref separates Batting WAR and Pitching WAR which can make it easy to fail to include it. He looks much better in context by my numbers than out of context (40.7 pWORL vs. 32.6 eWORL). And, yes, he was quite good at the non-FIP components of pitching. Fangraphs shows this most strikingly, I think. They actually calculate WAR two ways: based on FIP - which gives Lemon 32.3 WAR - and based on RA/9 - which gives Lemon 52.6 WAR - 20 more WAR! - which improves his ranking on Fangraphs among pitchers from 258th in FIP-based WAR (which is, of course, their preferred WAR) to 120th in RA-based WAR.

And then, raw career WAR understates Lemon's value, since he had a relatively short career, in part due to World War II (he served for all of the 1943, 1944, and 1945 seasons - he was in the minor leagues in 1942 (as a 3B)).

Without getting into World War II credit, using my preferred weighting of things (pWins vs. eWins; WOPA vs. WORL; etc.) he ends up in the same general vicinity as Roy Campanella (also with no extra credit), Roy Halladay, Early Wynn, and Rod Carew, to pick four players who have virtually nothing in common except that they're all fairly solid mid-tier Hall-of-Famers/Meriters (well, Halladay will be once he's eligible).
   218. Bleed the Freak Posted: September 18, 2017 at 08:05 PM (#5534026)
Thanks Kiko.

Regarding your ratings versus B-R and B-G, is it mostly attributed to the numbers he had in context?
Per your suggestion, I've been using 1/3 pWORL and 2/3 eWORL, Lemon vaults into the top 60 hurlers of all-time.
When I use B-R and B-G, he falls in the low 100s range.

If it's not just context, does he excel in some other ways you capture differently/better than the other metrics?

   219. Howie Menckel Posted: September 18, 2017 at 08:40 PM (#5534048)
I could have sworn during our HOM discussion on Lemon many years ago that he had an amazing 100 career OPS+. now it is listed at 82.

so I misremembered it - or is it something else?

in 419 AB from 1947-50, Lemon had 20 HR, 71 RBI, and OPS+s of 177, 119, 134, and 113. he also was 76-40 in that span for an average W-L of 19-10. 144, 133, 112, and 108 ERA+s and led the AL in IP twice.

not true math, but has a 119 ERA+ and 82 OPS+. I wonder how many other Ps have a combined figure over 200? Sandy Koufax ain't one.
   220. Kiko Sakata Posted: September 18, 2017 at 10:06 PM (#5534093)
Regarding your ratings versus B-R and B-G, is it mostly attributed to the numbers he had in context?

That's certainly part of it. Lemon was very good on balls in play - the evidence suggests that he was very good at inducing weak contact. Per BB-Ref, for his career, MLB had an average batting line of .259/.332/.370 with a BABIP of .276. Lemon allowed a line of .240/.320/.337 with a BABIP of .258. So his BABIP allowed was .018 lower and his ISO was .097 vs. a lg-ISO of .111. I'm not entirely sure why that wouldn't show up to his credit in BB-Ref, though, since they base their pitcher WAR on runs allowed.

I'm not as familiar with Fangraphs - but there, the story is the non-FIP stuff which I discussed above - but, in BB-Ref, it's really hard to get them to give you a set of WAA and/or WAR that include both pitching WAR and batting WAR. In the play index, if you look at WAR numbers for pitchers, it's pitching only. Which doesn't matter for most pitchers, but Bob Lemon is very much not most pitchers: his batting was worth 11.3 WAR (and/or 11.3 WAA) per BB-Ref. I have him as the second-best hitting pitcher for whom I've calculated Player won-lost records (i.e., basically since 1930) behind Wes Ferrell - so, best-hitting pitcher since World War II and/or since integration.

As far as my personal ratings, he's also being measured as more of a prime candidate. He was very good from 1948 - 1956. Controlling for context, he's about the 7th-best player in MLB over that time period, the 3rd-best pitcher, and the best American League pitcher, measured by either eWOPA or eWORL. I'm not sure how to do a similar leaderboard for BB-Ref because of the issue w/ pitcher batting (which would also affect Warren Spahn).
   221. Bleed the Freak Posted: September 19, 2017 at 11:53 PM (#5534885)
In BB-Ref, it's really hard to get them to give you a set of WAA and/or WAR that include both pitching WAR and batting WAR.

Maybe The Baseball Gauge (Seamheads) has a search tool you are looking for:
WAR leaderboards
WAR and WAA are available for Baseball Reference and Gauge, and you can mix and match other ways too.

A downloads section is also available for baseball gauge for all seasons:
Baseball Gauge WAR download

A polarizing candidate has been Wilbur Wood for me.
To the wayback machine, Wood was underwhelming by Baseball Prospectus WARP and Joe Dimino's PA.
Conversely, Wilbur at Baseball-Reference and Baseball Gauge show him as a mid-level or lower end HOF quality player.
His Fangraphs FIP are a bit shy of a large HOF, his WPA and Baseball Prospectus DRA are terrible.
When I look at Win-Loss records, I see a pitcher outside the top 200 all-time.

What are your thoughts on Wood?
   222. Ardo Posted: September 22, 2017 at 12:46 AM (#5536550)
Wood's entire case is 1968-73. Because he had so much bulk, he effectively packs four typical seasons of value into three seasons (both as a relief ace and a front-line starter). Yet he adds so little value outside of those six seasons that I can't justify giving him a ballot spot.
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