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

Monday, July 15, 2002

Center Fielders

Here are the center fielders. A much better bunch than the LF’s.

280 - 36, 28, 27 - 112 - Tom Brown - 14.1 sea. - 229 batting - 51 fielding.
CF 58%, RF 37%, LF 5%
notes: 1882-98. 5-year peak from age 21-25. Played entire career in NL, except for his peak, from 1882-86 (AA); 1890 (PL) 23 WS, 1891 (AA) 36 WS.

307 - 41, 41, 35 - 169 - Pete Browning - 9.5 sea. - 268 batting - 39 fielding.
CF 39%, LF 37%, 3B 8%, 2B 6%, SS 5%, RF 3%, 1B 2%.
notes: 1882-94. 5-year peak from age 21-25. Played entire career in AA, except 1890 (PL) 29 WS, 1891-94 (NL) 20, 16, 14, 1 WS respectively.

370 - 45, 43, 37 - 169 - George Gore - 11.6 sea. - 294 batting - 76 fielding.
CF 90%, LF 6%, RF 2%, 1B 2%.
notes: 1879-92. 5-year peak from age 25-29. Played entire career in NL, except 1890 (PL) 22 WS.

419 - 42, 40, 39 - 181 - Paul Hines - 18.7 sea. - 346 batting - 73 fielding.
CF 71%, 1B 12%, LF 7%, 2B 6%, 3B 2%, SS 1%, RF 1%, C 1%.
notes: 1872-91. 5-year peak from age 26-30. Played 4.0 seasons in NA (not included here). Played rest of career in NL, except 1891 (AA) 6 WS.

156 - 27, 24, 24 - 118 - Bug Holliday - 6.7 sea. - 127 batting - 30 fielding.
CF 65%, LF 24%, RF 9%, 1B 1%, SS 1%.
notes: 1889-98. 5-year peak from age 22-26. Played entire career in NL, except 1889 (AA) 24 WS.

106 - 29, 17, 17 - 77 - Dick Johnston - 6.5 sea. - 69 batting - 38 fielding.
CF 97%, LF 1%, SS 1%.
notes: 1884-91. 5-year peak from age 21-25. Played entire career in NL, except 1884 (AA) 17 WS, 1890 (PL) 7 WS, 1891 (AA) 10 WS.

163 - 35, 30, 24 - 131 - Bill Lange - 5.9 sea. - 128 batting - 35 fielding.
CF 85%, 2B 8%, 1B 2%, LF 2%, SS 1%, 3B 1%, C 1%.
notes: 1893- 99. 5-year peak from age 24-28. Played entire career in NL.

68 - 27, 15, 14 - 68 - Fred Lewis - 2.9 sea. - 57 batting - 11 fielding.
CF 87%, RF 10%, LF 3%.
notes: 1881, 1883-86. 5-year peak from age 22-27 (DNP in majors at age 23). Career split all over the place. Best year was 1884, was mostly in the AA (73 G, 8 in UA).

76 - 34, 25, 17 - 76 - John O’Rourke - 2.6 sea. - 64 batting - 12 fielding.
CF 97%, LF 1%, RF 1%.
notes: 1879-80, 1883. 5-year peak from age 29-33. Played 1879-80 in NL (59 WS) and 1883 in AA (17 WS).

113 - 30, 28, 15 - 93 - Chief Roseman - 6.0 sea. - 94 batting - 19 fielding.
CF 49%, RF 32%, LF 15%, 1B 4%
notes: 1882-87, 1890. 5-year peak from age 26-30. Played entire career in AA, except 1882 (NL) 11 WS.

150 - 34, 29, 29 - 132 - Jake Stenzel - 5.6 sea. - 126 batting - 24 fielding.
CF 90%, RF 4%, C 3%, LF 2%.
notes: 1890, 1892-99. 5-year peak from age 27-31. Played entire career in NL.

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: July 15, 2002 at 03:34 AM | 106 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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Page 2 of 2 pages  < 1 2
   101. Kelly in SD Posted: October 17, 2005 at 07:31 AM (#1688384)
I am downloading an reader now so I can take a look. Then I'll post where he would rank. He was up for election last year in the middle of my move and I never saw them...
   102. Kelly in SD Posted: October 17, 2005 at 08:22 AM (#1688400)
KJOK -
I could not find Charleston's MLEs in the Yahoo files. Could you repost them here or email them to me? Thank you in advance.
Kelly
   103. Paul Wendt Posted: October 17, 2005 at 03:14 PM (#1688742)
I have Willard Brown, Alejandro Ohms, and Fielder Jones in right and Leach at 3rd.

Classifying Fielder Jones as a rightfielder, Bill James made a simple mistake that he has acknowledged and slated for correction. Jones' career distribution of outfield games is 0-71-29%; he was a superior CF who played beside two famous veteran CFs early in his career, Mike Griffin and Dummy Hoy.

Look at the similarity in raw numbers between Van Haltren and Roush. Roush could field a bit better, but Van Haltren gets a bump for short schedules. Ryan and Thomas seem a cut below. With a little Negro League credit, Doby is probably in.

Roy Thomas was a famous collegian who then played a few years for the Orange Athletic Club (in New Jersey, Greater NYC?), enjoying status as the greatest amateur player. From Sporting Life 1897-1898, I recall that some thought he would never go pro. There was some financial trouble at the OAC (bankruptcy?) and a reorganization with new management or a new ballpark situation (tenant?).

A few days ago I was recently surprised by Delahanty's high putout rates and today I am surprised by Thomas' mediocre A- grade. I suspect a high fly ball rate against the Phillies, whence the Bill James approach deflates other sabermetric evaluations of their outfielders. --Delahanty and the next generation, if it is mainly a ballpark effect, as Hamilton and Thompson didn't play much in the Baker Bowl.
   104. sunnyday2 Posted: October 17, 2005 at 03:59 PM (#1688867)
My top CFers (retired ML only)

1. Cobb 418--200 is a virtual lock for HoF/HoM election
2. Mays 411
3. Speaker 376
4. Mantle 378
5. DiMaggio 328
6. Snider 249
7. Puckett 211

8. Dawson 196
9. Hamilton 195
10. Browning 187

11. Hines 186
12. Roush 184
13. Carey 176
14. Wilson 176
15. Gore 175
16. Doby 173 without NeL credit
17. Duffy 170
18. Dale Murphy 168
19. Averill 168
20. Ashburn 162

21. Berger 155
22. Lynn 154--reasonable HoF/HoM candidates go down to about 150

23. Pinson 148
24. Seymour 145
25. Cedeno 144
   105. Paul Wendt Posted: December 14, 2005 at 09:14 PM (#1777345)
.
Regarding Player and Team Range Factors at baseball-reference.

The Bresnahan thread includes a lot about outfield defense measures and about NL outfielding in the early aughts. Regarding Roy Thomas and the Phillies outfield, I reported a mismatch there. I also informed BB-REF author Sean Forman, who has replied that <u>BB-REF range factors are calculated per inning for teams (and leagues?), per game for players</u>.

Background:

Paul Wendt, Roger Bresnahan #32
Philadelphia detail
 LF  CF  RF  range factor
 48   0   0  2.50  Slagle 
  0 129   0  2.26  Thomas
 82   1   1  2.24  Delahanty
  1   0 137  2.18  Flick  
 12  15   2  1.86  other

143 145 140  2.30! sum games, team range factor! 

! evidently, I don't know how team range factor is calculated at baseball-reference

jimd, Roger Bresnahan #33
. . . I added two new columns. The team OF range factor (thanks to Paul Wendt for the tip to avoid B-R.com's team factor; I recalculated); the league factor was 1.944.



Paul Wendt to Sean Forman
<pre> I think there is a mistake in calculation of team range factor at
baseball-reference. For example, see Philadelphia NL 1901.
http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/PHI/1901.shtml

The outfield team range factor should be a little (in this era) better
than the weighted average of player range factors, because four or more
players sometimes get credit for a game but the team total is precisely
three outfielders in each game. And the website does correctly
"calculate" or transcribe team games, 140 for this team.

Team range factor should be (PO+A)/G/3, using team data throughout, or
(901/54)/140/3 = 2.274 for this team. But the site displays 2.30.

Paul
   106. Paul Wendt Posted: December 14, 2005 at 09:18 PM (#1777352)
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