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Monday, March 07, 2005

Buddy Myer

Buddy Myer

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 07, 2005 at 02:28 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 07, 2005 at 02:54 AM (#1184907)
hot topics
   2. Paul Wendt Posted: March 07, 2005 at 04:36 AM (#1185096)
More than 15 years ago, I read the Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract. I learned that Lefty Grove was Sandy Koufax with a longer career, and that Buddy Myer was Billy Herman, flat tied for 7th best 2Bman before Joe Morgan (the ones "before my time"). James ridiculed Cooperstown for distinguishing between Herman and Myer.

Last year, I read the new Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract and learned that a funny thing happened to Buddy Myer when James discovered how to measure defense.

It's great to come home and read a bit of this, contribute a bit.
   3. Kelly in SD Posted: March 07, 2005 at 11:07 AM (#1185368)
Buddy Myer minor league info and other orts.

From Daguerrotypes:
year Gs ABs Rs Hts 2B 3 H RBI Avg.
1925 99 402 76 135 21 8 3 44 .336
Defense
POs Ast Es Pct.
249 306 37 .938

Myer only played one year in the minors, with New Orleans of the Southern League, at age 21. He was called up/purchased by Washington that same year.
In 1927, he was traded to the Red Sox for Emory Rigney, May 2 and was traded back to Washington Dec 15, 1928 for Milt Gaston, Horace Lisenbee, Bobby Reeves, Grant Gillis, and Elliott Bigelow.

From the New BJHBA, p. 499, he signed with Clev. after graduating from Miss A&M, but refused to report when they wanted to send him to a low minor league. They released him, New Orleans signed him and then sold him to Washington. Supposedly, the Red Sox offered Rigney for Myer and Tris Speaker convinced Senators manager Bucky Harris to do the deal despite Clark Griffith's opposition. Harris was soon fired and Griffith had to trade 5 players to get Myer back. Griffith offered Joe Cronin in the deal, but the Red Sox wanted Reeves who had played in the majors during 1928.

From Win Shares,
258 career win shares, 21.7 per 163 games, 20.8 per 648 plate apps. I think he is a win shares all-star for the AL one time, never at the major league level (though competing with Hornsby, Herman, and Gehringer will do that). Defensively win shares "B-" with no gold gloves.

Black / grey ink of 6 / 45. Career avgs. .303/ .389 / .406. 2100 hits and almost a 1000 walks.

Macmillan said he had an "illness" in 1936.

From the Biographical Encyclopedia Baseball: Myer never signed the contract with the Indians who wanted to send him to Dallas in the Texas League. So he signed as a free agent with New Orleans. They sold him to Washington for $25,000. He played in 3 games in that year's World Series after only playing in 4 regular season games b/c the regular second baseman, Ossie Bluege, was beaned in game 2.

He played shortstop in 1926, the year before he was first traded. Since he wasn't a great second baseman, that must not have been pretty. I'm guessing he had poor instincts/first step or a bad arm, because he had a good deal of speed. Supposedly beat out 60 bunt hits in a season.
   4. Howie Menckel Posted: March 07, 2005 at 02:02 PM (#1185423)
Yes, Paul, I just happened to re-read the James Abstract on that last week while browsing in the bookstore.

Myer .303, 2131 H, 850 RBI
Herman .304, 2345 H, 839 RBI

It's a good start to a "separated at birth" piece, but ultimately it doesn't hold up...
   5. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 07, 2005 at 11:03 PM (#1186518)
Maybe the coolest thing about Buddy Myer was that he was a fighter pilot during WWII instead of a ballplayer. He joined the service after the 1941 season, which was earlier than most players, who played in 1942. He also said that flying a plane, and not baseball, was his passion.
   6. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: March 07, 2005 at 11:14 PM (#1186537)
Welcome to the backlog Buddy Myer. I've got him a little below Rabbit. Higher peak, shorter career.
   7. EricC Posted: March 07, 2005 at 11:39 PM (#1186592)
Since I may be the only one who actually his Buddy Myer on his ballot, I suppose I ought to say something.

The big picture: Obviously Buddy Myer was no Frisch or Gehringer and at best, Lazerri plus, making him a very marginal candidate. If, however, we had done the HoM elections with twice as many electees per election to make a HoM plus a Hall of the Very Good, I think that this obscure player who I had never heard of before would be a shoo-in for the HVG.

Some comparisons with contemporary candidates:

G4, G5, G6, oth, are games played at 2B, 3B, SS, and other positions. BJ is the rank among 2B in Bill James' new Historical Baseball Abstract.

                        G4  G5  G6 oth  OPS+ WS    W1    W3 BJ 
Gehringer  1924-1942  2206   6   0   9  124 383 150.1 125.9  8 
Frisch     1919-1937  1762 459  75   0  111 366 145.6 110.7 11
Bi. Herman 1931-1947  1813  71   0  27  112 298 113.7  96.7 14
Myer       1925-1941  1340 219 238  13  108 258  89.1  70.4 24
Lazzeri    1926-1939  1456 166  87   3  121 252  96.9  75.7 19



I'd disagree with James and put Myer above Lazzeri. Lazerri almost makes my ballot, and Myer does.
   8. sunnyday2 Posted: March 08, 2005 at 12:19 AM (#1186676)
Myer is another tough call. I mean Billy Herman is a quality comp. To the best that I can tell, the idea that Herman was substantially better is essentially an artifact of weaker direct competition among 2Bs in the NL. The numbers are so incredibly close...

In fact in the + categories the biggest edge goes to Myer in OBP .389-.367. Herman had about 200 more hits and 80 more XBH, but in 700 more AB. Myer had 500 more BB.

With the glove there are probably better sources than my Palmer-Gillette Encyclopedia, but this is a brain tease.

FA Myer .974 Herman .967
Range Herman 98 Myer 96 both below average
Throwing Herman 111 Myer 110 both above average
Fielding Runs Herman +59 Myer -74

Herman also does significantly better on stuff like Hall of Fame Monitor and Standards and Black and Gray Ink.

All of that aside, I do like Herman a little better. And the fact is that Herman, while better than Gordon and Doerr, is not an inner circle guy. I fully expect the in-out line to fall between Herman and Myer. Or both fall below. That is vastly more likely than that both would go in.
   9. EricC Posted: March 08, 2005 at 12:30 AM (#1186695)
Myer is another tough call. I mean Billy Herman is a quality comp. To the best that I can tell, the idea that Herman was substantially better is essentially an artifact of weaker direct competition among 2Bs in the NL.

You raise interesting questions. The data in my chart above makes Herman look much better. I haven't analyzed Herman's entire career yet, so I don't know how I'll rate Herman in relation to the other 2B, but another important issue in his case is war credits and deductions. Does anybody know whether the WARP3 conversions carry a wartime deduction?
   10. EricC Posted: March 08, 2005 at 12:32 AM (#1186701)
Duly noted, of course, that Herman should get credit for missing 1944-1945. It's his great 1943 that I wonder about.

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