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Monday, January 24, 2005

Goose Goslin

Duck…duck…duck…duck…duck…Goose!

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:17 AM | 52 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:31 AM (#1098084)
hot topics
   2. Howie Menckel Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:32 AM (#1098091)
Love the seven OPS+ seasons above 130, not thrilled with the weak MVP voting, but then he competed against some incredible legends.
Interesting apples/oranges comparison vs Frisch...
   3. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:43 AM (#1098122)
Interesting apples/oranges comparison vs Frisch...

Frisch stands out greater among the second basemen than Goslin does with the leftfielders. I imagine some here will still be swayed by Goslin's OPS+ and place him above Frankie, however.
   4. DavidFoss Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:52 AM (#1098146)
Frisch stands out greater among the second basemen than Goslin does with the leftfielders.

That's my thinking as well. He's still going to be between 3-5 my ballot, though... probably #3. I rank him better than Wheat, but below Heilmann.
   5. Chris Cobb Posted: January 24, 2005 at 06:00 AM (#1098170)
Top of my 1944 ballot will probably be

1. Lou Gehrig
2. Frankie Frisch
3. Goose Goslin

I have him a little below both Heilmann and Wheat among leftfielders, but I like Wheat better than many, I guess.
   6. Ardo Posted: January 24, 2005 at 07:31 AM (#1098417)
Top of my 1944 ballot:

1. Lou Gehrig
2. Goose Goslin
3. Bill Foster
4. Frankie Frisch

Frisch is only a hair's breadth better than Sewell or Leach, but that argument belongs in a different thread. I have no qualms with electing Goslin at once.
   7. Chris Cobb Posted: January 24, 2005 at 04:20 PM (#1098884)
Ardo, by what measure do you reach these conclusions?

Setting aside the question for a moment of how much better Frisch was than Sewell, how do you see Goslin as better than Frisch?

As I read them, every one of the comprehensive metrics (WS, W1, W3) shows Frisch as having a better peak and better career than Goslin.
   8. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 24, 2005 at 04:36 PM (#1098916)
Ardo, by what measure do you reach these conclusions?


See post #3, Chris. :-D
   9. Dolf Lucky Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:08 PM (#1098978)
Goose Goslin is the greatest baseball player ever.





..with whom I share a birthday. Vote Goslin in '44!
   10. andrew siegel Posted: January 24, 2005 at 05:12 PM (#1098989)
Goslin vs. selected contemporay outfielders:

A preliminary ranking. Please challenge away:

(Ruth)
(1) Ott
(2) P. Waner
(3) Simmons

(Heilmann)
(4) Goslin
(Wheat)
(5) Medwick

in/out line

(6) Averill
(7) Berger

on ballot/off ballot line

(8) Cuyler
(9) H. Wilson
(10) Klein
(11) Herman
(12) L. Waner
   11. jingoist Posted: January 24, 2005 at 06:30 PM (#1099165)
Years ago (at least 25 or 30; maybe as a tribute after his death in 1971) Shirley Povich, writing in the Washington Post, extolled greatly the feats and virtues of one Mr. Goose Goslin.
One of his premises was that as great as Goose was, playing in Griffith stadium cost him dearly in generating career offensive statistics. If I recall he stated that almost all of his HRs were hit on the road during his stints with the Senators.
Now, no doubt some of that was due to Shirley being the Senators beat reporter during Goose's time in DC and the rose-colored glasses that old men wear when remembering fond memories being replayed in their mind.
But, I believe Bill James echos this fact in the 2000 revision of his handbook.
Goose may not be an "Inner Circle" LF like Williams or Bonds but he sure is worthy of inclusion into your HoM.
   12. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 24, 2005 at 09:57 PM (#1099668)
Andrew,

I dont' have any major qualms with it. I might put Simmons above Waner, though I haven't taken a look at them in my system yet.

Also, the In/Out line may be lowered. I am thinking hard about putting Berger and/or Averill pretty high. Plus they were CFers, whereas the rest of corner guys.
   13. Paul Wendt Posted: January 25, 2005 at 01:04 AM (#1100126)
The duck seems a little young to me.

Before following 1904-1943, I would have identified these uncertain but viable candidates.
Wheat
Carey
Roush
Goslin
Averill
Klein
Medwick
with the others listed either certain or not viable. Now I know that Wheat and Goslin will go in easily and Carey will go in.
   14. EricC Posted: January 25, 2005 at 01:05 AM (#1100130)
andrew-

Your rankings look reasonable. In agreement with jschmeagol, Averill and Berger may end up above my in/out line. The others are definite no's for me. A few other contemporary ML outfielders who you could add to your list: Rice (above my in/out line); Combs and Manush (below).
   15. EricC Posted: January 25, 2005 at 01:09 AM (#1100141)
Duck...duck...duck...duck...duck...Goose!

But Medwick won't be eligible until 1954. Why are dragging him into the discussion? :-)
   16. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 25, 2005 at 01:40 AM (#1100200)
But Medwick won't be eligible until 1954. Why are dragging him into the discussion? :-)

I actually thought about a Medwick/Goslin connection, but my contribution was saccharine enough as it is. :-)
   17. DavidFoss Posted: January 25, 2005 at 01:59 AM (#1100248)
Your rankings look reasonable. In agreement with jschmeagol, Averill and Berger may end up above my in/out line.

I agree with the rankings for the most part as well, though I need to take a closer look at Medwick when the time comes.

I will weigh in with some caution on Averill & Berger, though. I'll slot them about where Andrew does in relation to the other outfielders, but with a several Negro League outfielders becoming eligible in the next five years, I don't know if they'll be able to claw their way up the ballot to induction. We'll see how that goes in the next few years.
   18. Jim Sp Posted: January 25, 2005 at 02:24 AM (#1100304)
My list is pretty similar, but I'd include Bob Johnson.

Babe Ruth
Mel Ott
Paul Waner
Al Simmons
Earl Averill
Harry Heilmann
Goose Goslin
Bob Johnson

<in out line>

Kiki Cuyler
Wally Berger

<on ballot line>

Chuck Klein
Edd Roush
Hack Wilson
Babe Herman
   19. Chris Cobb Posted: January 25, 2005 at 03:15 AM (#1100432)
This is not really a Goslin comment, but since the talk has turned to Averill, let me say that I am skeptical of the support he is receiving. He has a nice peak and a decent career, but I have him behind 28 1930s stars, in roughly this order:

Gehrig, Gibson, Paige, Grove, Ott, Stearnes, Foxx, Vaughan, Suttles, Gehringer, Simmons, Waner, Hubbell, Dickey, Hartnett, Cochrane, Cronin, Appling, Foster, Wells, Greenberg, Lyons, Ruffing, W. Ferrell, Wilson, Herman, Bell, Medwick.

Because there are great hitters at catcher and at first base, being the seventh-best outfielder leaves one a long way down in the overall rankings.

It's a chicken-and-egg question, but I wonder if there are so many good HoMers in this decade because there aren't as many inner-circle HoMers as there have been from 1900-1930. Warp's views on the quality of competition suggest that the level of play was very high, implying that the top players couldn't dominate as much, making for a lower, broader peak, but I am inclined to suspect that the appearance of all-time-great players is erratic and that, rich as the 1930s is for baseball stars, Gehrig is the closest player in white baseball to a Wagner, Cobb, Ruth, and great as he is, he's not their peer.

So I'm not inclined to rank the #29 star of the 1930s far ahead of the #29 star of the teens (that's Ed Konetchy, btw, in my rankings). Yes, he'll be ahead of Konetchy in my rankings by at least 15 places, but he'll be in the company of Hugh Duffy and Fielder Jones and some other close-but-no-cigar centerfielders in our backlog, not on the ballot, unless someone can convince me either

that he's much better in comparison to his peers

or

that we really should take 30 players with careers centered on the 1930s and only 15 with careers centered in the teens (that's where we're at with the teens now, by my count) and 13 from the 1890s.

Of course, I have Bill Terry at #30 for the 1930s, right behind Averill. So what do I know?
   20. jimd Posted: January 25, 2005 at 03:57 AM (#1100535)
Does Averill have an argument for minor league credit?

Here's a 27 year old rookie who was also the best CF in the AL.
   21. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: January 25, 2005 at 05:04 AM (#1100709)
This is kind of a sidetrack, but since John hasn't put up a new discussion thread yet, here's my attempt to quantify Chris's "decade centered" list. Some of these are total coin-flips for picking a decade, so adjust to taste. (I suspect the difference between my list and Chris's for the teens is Pete Hill.) The number in parentheses is the first year someone from that decade was elected.

1860s (1931) - 1 (Pearce)
1870s (1898) - 9 (Anson, Barnes, McVey, Pike, Spalding, Start, Sutton, White, Wright)
1880s (1898) - 17 (Bennett, Brouthers, Caruthers, Clarkson, Connor, Ewing, Galvin, Glasscock, Gore, Hines, Keefe, Kelly, O'Rourke, Radbourn, Richardson, Stovey, Ward)
1890s (1904) - 13 (Burkett, Dahlen, Davis, Delahanty, Grant, Hamilton, Keeler, Kelley, McPhee, Nichols, Rusie, Thompson, Young)
1900s (1917) - 15 (Brown, Clarke, Collins, Crawford, Flick, Foster, G. Johnson, Lajoie, Mathewson, McGinnity, Plank, Sheckard, Wagner, Wallace, Walsh)
1910s (1926) - 16 (Alexander, Baker, Carey, Cobb, Collins, Groh, Hill, Jackson, W. Johnson, Lloyd, Magee, Santop, Speaker, Torriente, Wheat, Williams)
1920s (1937) - 8 (Charleston, Coveleski, Faber, Heilmann, Hornsby, Rogan, Ruth, Vance)
1930s (1942) - 2 (Cochrane, Terry)
   22. DanG Posted: January 25, 2005 at 06:02 AM (#1100909)
My 1981 copy of Daguerreotypes show only three seasons in the PCL before Averill was purchased by Cleveland for $50,000.

Year  G   AB  R   H  2B 3B HR  BI  BA   PO  A
1926 188 679 131 236 49  6 23 119 .348 364 17
1927 183 754 134 244 47  6 20 116 .324 451 45
1928 189 763 178 270 53 11 36 173 .354 462 25


Led PCL in OF assists in 1927 and runs in 1928.
   23. Chris Cobb Posted: January 25, 2005 at 06:13 AM (#1100939)
Devin,

Your lists are pretty close to mine. I do list Hill for the aughts rather than for the teens. My lists, were I to put them up, would differ from yours slightly in that some all-time greats who were among the elite players in two decades are listed for both (and counted half for each in my own tallying system).

But your sensible division is enough to show that, if we were to induct the next four players in line from the 1920s -- Frisch, Goslin, Rixey, and Beckwith -- that decade would be close to parity with the 1890s through the 1910s.

My concern (heightened by the comments on Averill and the election of Terry), is that we'll start electing players from much farther down the 1930s depth chart than we have generally dipped in the earlier decades, picking (in my view) sub-borderline new players over the best borderline candidates remaining from 1890-1930.

W3, which shows a big jump in league quality at this point in baseball history, gives some measure of support/justification to this trend, but I worry that it will ultimately lead to overrepresentation of the 1930s players, who are the first group to reach 100% in the translation of W1 to W3 and so have an easier time supplanting the backlog.

Maybe my concerns are groundless or misguided, but I thought I'd air them out.

Oh, yeah, and I like Goslin, too, but (as I've said) not more than Gehrig or Frisch :-) .
   24. DavidFoss Posted: January 25, 2005 at 06:34 AM (#1100992)
Averill's last team in the PCL made a recent top 100 list. Here is the write-up:

1928 San Francisco Seals
   25. sunnyday2 Posted: January 25, 2005 at 03:20 PM (#1101371)
In the absence of a 1944 ballot discussion thread: Goslin is the very essence of a Tier 2 (Definition B) HoMer/HoFer. An obvious qualifier who was however never the best at his position. His position of course being defined as "hitter."

I do my ballot in two phases--first, a gross ranking based on the uber stats (with the usual bent toward peak/prime) and second, fine-tuning based on more details. Here is a list of the best players who played the position of hitter and are eligible now or through 1959. These are of course subject to change due to things like WWII credits, league difficulty, etc.

(BTW, in some eras I don't count CFers as "hitters" but in the current era I do.)

Tier 1--Inner Circle

1. Gehrig
2. DiMaggio
3. Ott
4. Foxx
5. Mize
6. Waner--you know which one

Tier 1.5--Not Inner Circle (but still an NB)
7. Medwick
8. Greenberg--will move up at least one slot based on WWII
9. Sisler

Tier 2--Not Inner Circle (but nearly a NB)

10. Goslin--closer to Sisler than to Klein
11. Klein
12. Browning
13. Roush

Tier 3--Not an NB (in/out line cuts through here, considering we are electing NeLers instead of Definition D MLers)

14. Hack Wilson
15. Duffy
16. Charley Keller--similar to Hack in ultra-high peak relative to length of career
17. Averill
18. C. Jones--made my PHoM, however, during backlog years of 1920s
19. Cuyler--I will probably rank KiKi higher than most, I see him as an Enos Slaughter type
20. Veach

Tier 4--not a NB, probably not even ballot worthy but worth a look anyway

21. Wally Berger
22. Dave Orr
23. Bob Johnson
24. F. Chance--on this list by virtue of 1B position but not really a "hitter" in the same sense
25. G. Burns--you know which one

And there are others who have been, still are and will be in my consideration set but are unlikely to ever make my ballot. The guys at the bottom of the list are so close that #20 Veach and #25 G. Burns have always been regarded as very close comps.

As for Averill and Berger, I see them both as in the borderline area, probably below in/out, and with Averill probably making my ballot and Berger probably not, but that is before doing any real thinking. But at a glance, I think the HoF may have drawn that particular line in the right place.

And I really like Cuyler though he is in the lower half (nominally perhaps not a HoMer) of the borderlands. I once sat next to a real old-timer at Wrigley who said he had been coming there since the 1930s. The one guy he was really really enthusiastic about was KiKi. No, he didn't say he was the best Cub ever, but he was the guy's favorite Cub of all-time. Maybe I'm letting that influence me too much.
   26. OCF Posted: January 25, 2005 at 05:56 PM (#1101597)
I just put a substantive comment on the Cuyler thread. It supports what Andrew said in #10.

On offense, I see Averill (major league record only) as similar in value to Roush and to Hack Wilson, a little bit behind Van Haltren and Duffy. I haven't looked at Berger yet.
   27. Paul Wendt Posted: January 25, 2005 at 06:43 PM (#1101675)
these uncertain but viable candidates.
Wheat
Carey
Roush
Goslin
Averill
Klein
Medwick

I listed those guys in chronological order although it might be taken the other way!
I looked it up. Averill was closer in age to Medwick than to Wheat & Speaker, but not by much.

Marc sunnyday2 likes Medwick and I like Averill. (DanG might say loves and loves; no one else was there.) Here in 1943-1944, I suspect that Marc is prematurely listing {Medwick Greenberg Sisler} two tiers above Averill because he wants to goad me into saying something passionate and if I don't stop now he will succeed.
   28. Paul Wendt Posted: January 25, 2005 at 07:05 PM (#1101710)
My concern (heightened by the comments on Averill and the election of Terry), is that we'll start electing players from much farther down the 1930s depth chart

I sympathize with Chris Cobb's concern. While I rank Averill above Medwick, Klein, Terry, it's possible that none of them would make my "PHOM" and back in 1904 I would have guess that they will all be left outside the thinkfactory HOM.

--
A few years ago, I informally credited Averill with three PCL seasons. The context was a question whether Cravath, say, was the last person who should get significant minor league credit. cblau replied that Averill's 1927 was not so great and that his career path was not unusual for its time. --in his sale to the majors after his first dominant season, I guess.
   29. Paul Wendt Posted: January 25, 2005 at 07:24 PM (#1101750)
I have read that LF in Griffith Stadium was almost a second CF. Goose Goslin and Heinie Manush played left with Sam Rice in right. I remember that I was surprised to learn their fielding positions, because I had presumed Sam Rice was a much superior fielder.

Goslin and Cochrane played on five AL champions winners. They were both gone by 1940 when Detroit won the pennant again.
AL pennants
1924-35: NY 4, Was 3, Phi 3, Det 2
1921-40: NY 11, Was 3, Phi 3, Det 3
   30. jimd Posted: January 25, 2005 at 10:49 PM (#1102158)
Can someone explain to me why Goose Goslin was better than George Van Haltren? (without using a timeline)

Their WARP-1 is very similar (111.7 vs 113.9), their best-3 (30.7 vs 31.1, adjusted to 154 g) and best-6 (57.9 vs 57.4, adjusted to 154 g). Their EQA's (.298 vs .293), average defense for their positions (100 vs 100). Goose was the slightly better hitter, but George the better fielder (CF vs LF).

Naturally, the timeline is in Goose's favor. But other than that?
   31. DavidFoss Posted: January 25, 2005 at 11:29 PM (#1102276)
I have read that LF in Griffith Stadium was almost a second CF

400 feet down the left field line.



Griffith Stadium
   32. KJOK Posted: January 26, 2005 at 12:05 AM (#1102360)
I have read that LF in Griffith Stadium was almost a second CF

400 feet down the left field line.


Yes, and what surprises me here is that should result in defensive metrics such as Win Shares and WARP rating him higher (like a CF) than maybe he should be, but his ratings are very average. Not sure that means he was really a below average fielder, or means something else...
   33. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 26, 2005 at 01:11 AM (#1102437)
jimd,

1. I use WARP3 when I use WARP.
2. I also don't adjust to 154 games when using WARP because of replacement level issues.
3. WARP3 may adjust for schedule, I don't know.

I have Goslin as the top corner outfielder, even better than guys like Wheat and Sheckard that we have elected. Win Shares also overrates GVH (in my mind) because of his pitching and his position. I think Win Shares overrates CFers in general.

And for the record, I have Cuyler as off my ballot below guys like Browning and Burns.
   34. jimd Posted: January 26, 2005 at 01:48 AM (#1102509)
Win Shares also overrates GVH (in my mind) because of his pitching and his position. I think Win Shares overrates CFers in general.

Which is why I didn't use Win Shares in my comparison.
   35. Chris Cobb Posted: January 26, 2005 at 02:07 AM (#1102560)
1. I use WARP3 when I use WARP.

This also does not address jimd's point, since (one of) the point(s) of WARP3 is to measure players' value not in the context of the season but against an abstract, all-time standard. This is a form of timelining. It's not arbitrary time-lining, but it is time-lining.

2. I also don't adjust to 154 games when using WARP because of replacement level issues.

I don't see the problem here. If the replacement level is off, it will be off whether you adjust for season-length or not, won't it? And if it is too low, players in longer seasons would be benefiting proportionately more than players in short seasons, wouldn't they? What am I missing?

3. WARP3 may adjust for schedule, I don't know.

It does. That is in fact the only thing that distinguishes WARP3 from WARP2. It does not do a straight adjustment, though, but uses some funky exponential calculation that I can never remember, the point of which is to make a partial rather than a full adjustment for players in short seasons.

I agree with jimd on Van Haltren and Goslin. In their immediate context, their values were similar. I have Van Haltren as the 12.5th best player of the 1890s, Goslin as the 12th best of the 1920s. Goslin is competing in a bigger, better pool, since white southerners had been brought into MLB after the turn of the century and the NeL was in full swing, so he ranks ahead of Van Haltren. But it's a small difference: I have Goslin at #3 and Van Haltren at #10 on a ballot that is very strong (though not as strong as it will be about 8 elections down the road).

Win shares, setting aside the pitching, shows Goslin's peak as a bit better than Van Haltren's, but VH's career value is higher when season length is adjusted. I can see reasons for voters to have one higher than the other or vice versa, but it's my sense they are not greatly different in merit.
   36. Brent Posted: January 26, 2005 at 03:33 AM (#1102697)
Chris Cobb wrote:

So I'm not inclined to rank the #29 star of the 1930s far ahead of the #29 star of the teens...

I don't want to get into the discussion of the merits and demerits of Averill (I take these elections one "year" at a time). But I can think of three reasons why there might be more well qualified candidates from the 1930s than from the preceding decades.

1. By the 1930s the Negro Leagues probably have reached a greater level of maturity so that there are more clearly qualified candidates than previously.

2. Improvements in equipment and playing conditions finally allow catchers to hit well while catching for 1500+ games, leading to the arrival of five first-rate catchers as prominent candidates.

3. The development of farm systems improve the movement of top players to the major leagues. After 1930 there will no longer be credible HoM candidates like Gavy Cravath who spend several years in the minors, or players who might have been credible candidates had they not spent the majority of their careers as minor league stars, such as Buzz Arlett, Johnny Bassler, and Frank Shellenback.

I'm not arguing for taking 30 players from the 1930s and 15 from the adjacent decades, but I am suggesting that it may be reasonable for the 1930s to be slightly better represented.
   37. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 26, 2005 at 04:13 AM (#1102774)
I was just explaining why I like Goslin more than GVH and may draw the in/out line between them.

It is also my opinion that the low replacement levels of the 19th century offset the schedule length issue a bit in WARP1. This is what I meant. For instance, if we translated Lip Pike's WARP1 to 154 games, he would look better than Ruth. Though Van haltren is really after this time period, pre-1894. Maybe I got ahead of myself there.

I have Goslin's peak as comparable by WS and better in WARP. Their careers are close in WARP as well. And since I downgrade CFers a tad in WS, Goslin pulls comfortably ahead. Goslin will be in the 3-5 range, Van haltren will be 13th or 14th.
   38. Chris Cobb Posted: January 26, 2005 at 04:34 AM (#1102812)
Brent wrote:

I'm not arguing for taking 30 players from the 1930s and 15 from the adjacent decades, but I am suggesting that it may be reasonable for the 1930s to be slightly better represented.

I agree. I think having 5-7 more players from what was clearly a great baseball decade than from any of the preceding decades may be reasonable. It's the possibility of 15 more that concerns me, and the closing off of the HoM to remaining serious candidates from the earlier decades. I sometimes despair of the 1890s ever getting its due.

jschmeagol wrote:

It is also my opinion that the low replacement levels of the 19th century offset the schedule length issue a bit in WARP1. This is what I meant.

OK. That makes more sense.
   39. Paul Wendt Posted: January 26, 2005 at 11:15 PM (#1104475)
In the Cuyler thread (as one type which Cuyler doesn't fit), I grouped the never-dominant career candidates O'Rourke, Clarke, Sheckard, Wheat, Rice, Goslin and Slaughter, who represents the next sixty years.
   40. Paul Wendt Posted: January 28, 2005 at 09:40 PM (#1109031)
Someone noted that Goslin was among the Top 5 players by Win Shares, 1924-28. I see that he was a better peak/prime player than I realized. As a batter, he was probably as good, with similar extrabase power, as Sherry Magee (the typical "prime" candidate), Jim O'Rourke (underrated above), and Paul Waner but for only 5 or 8 years rather than 12.

So Zack Triscuit isn't a great comp for the Goose, a finer entree who didn't last. Rather, Wheat (long career), Magee (long prime) and Sheckard (exc fielding & baserunning) are three types that Goslin doesn't fit well. I suspect there are many more corner OFs "like Goslin" than like any of those three --which is why they suit me as types.
   41. EricC Posted: January 29, 2005 at 01:58 AM (#1109727)
This is not really a Goslin comment, but since the talk has turned to Averill, let me say that I am skeptical of the support he is receiving. He has a nice peak and a decent career, but I have him behind 28 1930s stars, in roughly this order:

Gehrig, Gibson, Paige, Grove, Ott, Stearnes, Foxx, Vaughan, Suttles, Gehringer, Simmons, Waner, Hubbell, Dickey, Hartnett, Cochrane, Cronin, Appling, Foster, Wells, Greenberg, Lyons, Ruffing, W. Ferrell, Wilson, Herman, Bell, Medwick.


Chris- For a minute there, I thought that you meant Hack Wilson and Babe Herman!

Anyway on the subject of Averill/Berger, Averill will end up in the top half of my ballot when he becomes eligible and Berger will probably fall short (I think the HoF got it right). I see Averill as most similar to Elmer Flick. I can't find anyone who truly compares with Berger. Your point about 28 stars from one decade is well-taken. My system can't allow too many players from one era, so it will be interesting to see how it plays out (personally and overall) as the other 1930's stars become eligible.
   42. Paul Wendt Posted: January 29, 2005 at 06:56 PM (#1111207)
Someone mentioned Willie Keeler, probably for his career PA and OPS+ (exc match) and career pattern. I estimate that Keeler lost more than 8 points OPS+ during the last 20% of his career and Goslin lost fewer than 5 points during the last 22%, his Detroit years. Still, it appears that they did generate similar value-pattern as batter-runners, in very different ways (1B v HR).

If Joe Kelley had remained an everyday player for a dozen years, Goose Goslin would be a poor man's Kelley. (with the small difference, 1B v HR, attributable to the epochs?)

--
Averill and Flick are a good match by mlb career pattern, so people with similar views about peak, prime and career-sum will make some similar judgments about them --perhaps within different comparison sets, because the differences between them are huge. At least two differences will be crucial to their assessment, for many people: the circumstances of their "short" all-prime mlb careers and the great batter v the fine centerfielder.

By mlb career pattern, Berger and Hack Wilson are a reasonable match, maybe each other's best match among the CFs.

--
Flick doesn't appear in my discussion of the corner outfielders because he was too good as a batter, like Sam Crawford. Goslin wasn't that good at his peak. Flick is of course a fine example of the "prime only" career.
   43. TomH Posted: February 07, 2005 at 09:05 PM (#1130687)
I just now noticed how similar Goose Goslin was to Jim Rice. Same OPS+, Goose small advanatge in defense and career length, but Rice played in a tougher era. WARP shows them really similar.

But.....Win Shares gives Goslin a big edge, both career and rate. Anybody know why?
   44. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: February 07, 2005 at 10:56 PM (#1130896)
I wonder if this is where the marginal runs come into play? Perhaps Goslin contributed more marginal runs to his teams as compared to Rice who was surrounded by Lynn, Evans, Boggs, and other excellent hitters in their primes?
   45. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 07, 2005 at 11:04 PM (#1130916)
Tom and Doc Chaleeko:

GIDP
   46. TomH Posted: February 08, 2005 at 12:11 AM (#1131008)
hmmmm....doesn't WARP use GIDP?
   47. jimd Posted: February 08, 2005 at 01:07 AM (#1131091)
GIDP (like RBI) is a stat that needs some normalization for opportunities.
   48. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 08, 2005 at 01:47 AM (#1131179)
GIDP (like RBI) is a stat that needs some normalization for opportunities.

I totally agree. I've been saying that for twenty years. Has Bill James ever commented on it?
   49. Brent Posted: February 08, 2005 at 04:33 AM (#1131452)
See the 1984 Baseball Abstract, p. 16 (I believe that is the year that James decided to add them to the "technical" version of the formula). Here's an excerpt:

"Two principles collide:

1) A 'clean' measure of performance is always to be preferred to a 'situation dependent' measure.
2) An accurate measure of performance is always to be preferred to a less accurate measure.

"In the past, I have gone with the first desire; this year, with the second. For three reasons. First of all, GIDP totals may be somewhat polluted by context, but they cannot possibly be so polluted that they tell you more about the context than about the player, as RBI counts and Runs Scored counts are on some occasions. The reason for that is the spread. Some players will ground into a double play about once every 20 at-bats. Tony Armas in 1983 grounded into a double play every 18.5 at-bats. Other players ground into double plays only once every one hundred at-bats. Kirk Gibson grounded into only two double plays in 401 at-bats, one every 200.5 at-bats. Tony Armas might have batted with more runners on first base--conceivably as many as 30 or 40% per at-bat, though in truth it is extremely unlikely that it was 40%. He certainly did not bat with eleven times as many runners on first base. A possible 30 or 40% difference in their opportunities to ground into double plays does not provide a sufficient reason to ignore an 1100% difference in double plays grounded into."

I'll summarize James's other two arguments. One is that batting averages are slightly higher when runners are on first base -- a hidden statistical advantage from batting with runners on first that partly offsets the disadvantage of additional GIDP opportunities. The second is that players who steal bases also tend to have fewer GIDP, which goes against the argument that credit is being taken away from base stealers (because the team's GIDP opportunities are reduced).

I'll mention that a few years ago (ok, I'll admit it -- quite a few years ago), I ran some regressions to see what I would come up with as a runs creation formula. I found that GIDP were strongly significant, meaning that leaving them out will definitely hurt the accuracy of the formula. As James said, one must weigh the benefits of including them against the possible misinformation from differences in opportunities. (Of course with play-by-play data, it would be possible to normalize for opportunities. Although James made some use of pbp data for modern players in Win Shares, I don't believe he made that adjustment.)
   50. KJOK Posted: February 08, 2005 at 04:48 AM (#1131493)
I just now noticed how similar Goose Goslin was to Jim Rice. Same OPS+, Goose small advanatge in defense and career length, but Rice played in a tougher era. WARP shows them really similar.

But.....Win Shares gives Goslin a big edge, both career and rate. Anybody know why?


Goslin does have a 14 Win Share edge in Defensive Win Shares, and about 59 Offensive Win Shares edge. Goslin had around 800 more Plate Appearances, which would partially explain that difference. That doesn't explain the rate difference, however.
   51. DavidFoss Posted: February 08, 2005 at 05:35 AM (#1131571)
OWP:
Goslin-.635
Rice-.593

Both had OPS+ of 128 but Goslin had a slightly better OBP/SLG split:

Goslin: 107.5/120.5
Rice: 104.8/123.6

In terms of Batting Win Shares, Jim Rice played in a DH league which hurts his numbers by about 10% (9 lineup slots sharing WS instead of 8). That could be it, because when I use Lee Sinin's Encylopedia to measure league-adjusted Runs Created (would be RC+ I suppose), I get a 141-133 edge to Goslin when compared to all batters, but a 133-132 edige to Rice when comparing to non-pitchers.

Whew... we have about 35 years before we have to worry about he DH.
   52. Paul Wendt Posted: February 08, 2005 at 07:22 AM (#1131848)
Brent #49
See the 1984 Baseball Abstract, p. 16 (I believe that is the year that James decided to add [GIDP] to the "technical" version of the formula).

beginning 1939 for the AL, according to BJHBA
--too late for the Goose

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