Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Hall of Merit > Discussion
Hall of Merit
— A Look at Baseball's All-Time Best

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Hall of Merit, what’s next?

Finally back in the swing of things here. I guess we need to talk about what’s next.

We’ve had a few things discussed.

1) Ranking all pitchers as a group, now that we’ve sorted them by era.
2) Award votes for each season (going present -> 1871 or 1871 -> present have both been proposed).
3) Moving forward with the Hall of Merit website.

Anything I’m missing? Any new ideas?

Now that summer is waning, the wedding is over, etc., I’m back in the swing of things and ready to move forward with these ideas. Hopefully we can get the momentum back.

—Joe

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: August 08, 2009 at 09:31 PM | 236 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Related News:

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 3 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3
   201. sunnyday2 Posted: October 28, 2009 at 09:56 AM (#3368208)
P.S. Joe, I guess for the HoM we're now talking about the 2010 election? There's already a discussion thread for that, which I just bumped to the top of the Hot Topics.
   202. sunnyday2 Posted: December 16, 2009 at 05:29 PM (#3414743)
Summary of MMP Project (Most Meritorious Player) from previous page

Discussion Thread 1/2-1/16!
First ballot 1/16-1/23!

Most Meritorious Player is one single ballot for all leagues and all positions

Ballot length is 1.5X the number of ML teams in the year in question, though I would think you may vote for players who are not necessarily on the roster of one of these particular teams (e.g. vote for Sadaharu Oh if you like or Lefty Grove of Ballimer but the ballot length is still 1.5X, and etc.).

3 weeks per year? Or do we start overlapping discussions? I think the idea was that the 2-week discussion period would overlap the vote for the previous year. That way it is a net 2 weeks per year and the whole project is reduced from 8 years to 5 years of real time.

But what year to start with? There have been several suggestions. Shall we vote for the year in which we should start MMP voting?

1871
1876
1901
1954
Other--specify

The good news is that in any of these years the # of ML teams is pretty clear. We will want some expert help with what to do about things like the UA and FL, and more importantly how many teams to attribute to the NgLs. I would think the MxL and winter leagues would fit under the Oh Rule (above). (And probably the UA and FL, too.)

Actually there was talk of a 2009 MMP vote in December but that's not going to happen. December is a bad time for any discretionary activity. So we could start with 2009 as a sort of shakedown cruise. But then the question remains, with what year would we then continue?

I will vote first: start with 2009 on the dates specified above, then continue with 1949-2008, then 1901-1948, then 1871-1900. I would take the full 3 weeks for 2009, not overlapping discussion of the second year, so that we can digest any procedural details that we might want to discussion and alter. We could even have a lag week, e.g.

1/2-1/16 2009 discussion
1/16-1/23 2009 vote
1/23-1/30 Finalize procedures

1/30-2/13 Next discussion
2/13-2/20 Next vote

2/13-2/27 Next discussion
Etc. etc.

Actually I'm not sure if Joe knows he started all of the above cycles on Saturday or if he meant to do that. We've been on Monday for 6 years now and I'd propose staying there.
   203. DL from MN Posted: December 17, 2009 at 03:46 PM (#3415907)
Seconded
   204. rawagman Posted: December 19, 2009 at 05:25 PM (#3417565)
How about starting to discuss current players from the lenses we each use to view historical players?
This would enable us to keep up interest in the project throughout the year while not binding us to our current opinions.
History is not only the static view of what happened but also a prism with which to view what is unfolding right in front of us.
   205. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 21, 2009 at 10:55 PM (#3418979)
Whoa . . . Sadaharu Oh? We are all on board with Japanese leagues counting?
   206. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 21, 2009 at 10:59 PM (#3418984)
"1/2-1/16 2009 discussion
1/16-1/23 2009 vote
1/23-1/30 Finalize procedures"


How can we vote before we finalize procedures?

Or was the 2009 vote just a mock ballot to see how it would work before we finalize?
   207. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2009 at 12:13 AM (#3419053)

How can we vote before we finalize procedures?

Or was the 2009 vote just a mock ballot to see how it would work before we finalize?


Color me confused, too.
   208. sunnyday2 Posted: December 24, 2009 at 04:55 PM (#3421625)
"1/2-1/16 2009 discussion
1/16-1/23 2009 vote
1/23-1/30 Finalize procedures"

How can we vote before we finalize procedures?

Or was the 2009 vote just a mock ballot to see how it would work before we finalize?


Yes, 2009 was a mock ballot, a test drive. Obviously we would have adopted procedures prior to that, but there would be an opportunity for fine tuning after that.

So the actual questions are how long of a ballot, which we need prior to the 2009 test, and what year to start with, which we can decide after the test.

And of course, we need to agree that it is one ballot only, all positions, all leagues. Or not. But it seems that is the consensus. If the ballot is long enough we will be able to derive our own Cy Young Awards/Most Meritorious Pitcher from the results, and other more discrete "awards."
   209. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: December 24, 2009 at 05:33 PM (#3421675)
And what do we plan to do for the years with sketchy or no NgL data?
   210. sunnyday2 Posted: December 24, 2009 at 08:36 PM (#3421837)
PS. The process that I summarized in #202 was first suggested by Joe. I just changed the dates because the dates in Joe's post had already gone by.

We plan on being smart and creative and qualitative and generally using the intelligence that God gave us, just like we have been doing since 1871 in the HoM process.
   211. HGM Posted: January 07, 2010 at 12:06 AM (#3430203)
So, is the HoM going to do yearly award voting? I would like to participate in that.
   212. DanG Posted: January 07, 2010 at 10:23 PM (#3431260)
Tuesday, January 08, 2002
Welcome to the Hall of Merit
This is the first blog entry for the Hall of Merit. We hope you will find this an interesting new feature on our site. Much more information will follow.
Allow me to be the first to wish happy birthday to the Hall of Merit, which turns eight years old tomorrow.

Yesterday, when I was young
The taste of life was sweet, as rain upon my tongue
   213. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: January 07, 2010 at 11:28 PM (#3431367)
Thanks Dan!

And it's the Hall of Merit's Golden Birthday!

Interesting how I found out what a golden birthday is. Some of you have heard this one already. True story.

My (now) wife, last January 27 was excited for her golden birthday. I asked her, 'what is that?' She said that it's when your birthdate is the same as how old you are.

Something didn't compute. Then it hit, and risking my life, I mentioned, 'you realize you are 37, not 27, right?'

In her mind it was (literally) like she aged 10 years in a second. I felt pretty bad raining on her parade . . . but I guess it really is all about how old you feel anyway, right?
   214. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: January 07, 2010 at 11:30 PM (#3431371)
So, is the HoM going to do yearly award voting? I would like to participate in that.


I believe we are. I am extremely busy right now . . . so next steps are?

1) create a thread for a sample ballot using 2009, 45 names, all of majors on ballot, right?

2) finalize procedures, come to consensus on when we'll start, etc..

Anything, else?
   215. sunnyday2 Posted: January 09, 2010 at 12:17 AM (#3432364)
I'd say that

1) open a discussion thread for preliminary 2009 ballots for maybe 2 weeks. Since this is our maiden voyage I think a sample sample would be helpful. Historically we've gone Monday to Monday, right? So maybe 1-11 to 1-25 for prelims.

2) Then real balloting.

One question is how to tally. A 100 point system was suggested once upon a time but I don't know for sure what that means on a 45-man ballot.

3) We might want a thread right away to discuss what year in which to start real balloting. As I said above, the years that have been suggested here over the past year or whatever include 1871, 1876, 1901, 1947, 1954, and there might have been others.

4) Do we want/do we need something like Dan G.'s lists on the HoM...e.g. a top 45 or top X by WS or WAR (whose WAR)? It's a thought but now that I put it out there it's a bad thought. Everybody can and will choose their own metrics. For me, it will be whether they feel like an all-star or not.
   216. Howie Menckel Posted: January 09, 2010 at 04:21 AM (#3432491)
I hope to put together some of my old-time HOM lists in 2010.

One example:
- By my count the Red Sox have had at least one HOM member on their roster in every season since 1933 (well, thru 1994, and Clemens will pick up 1995-96 and Pedro and Manny carry 2000 and beyond, and so on).
- 3B Bucky Walters may solve 1933, but 1931-32 is hopeless
- Their only other "blanks" are 1920-23, and Jack Quinn ain't going in
- The string does include token Red Ruffing appearances in 1924 and 1930, and by Joe Cronin in 1945, plus TWilliams/Boudreau tokens in 1952; and Saberhagen saves the day with a token in 1997
- Granting Clemens, then at least 2 HOMers per yr from 1971-94

The Yankees are missing 1910-14; 1969-72; and 1991-92

Anyone curious about a particular team I should ring up?
   217. OCF Posted: January 09, 2010 at 04:39 AM (#3432495)
How about checking World Series winners or WS participants? Where WS winners have HoFers was a topic on BBTF; the first two WS winners without a HoFer were the '81 Dodgers and '84 Tigers. Both of those teams have HoMers (in the case of the '81 Dodgers, just barely - a very part time Reggie Smith.)

In a one-shot check of a notorious team, I found that the 1914 Miracle Braves didn't have a HoMer. (Two HoFers in Evers and Maranville.) Any other such teams?
   218. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: January 09, 2010 at 06:01 PM (#3432760)
Indians would be interesting Howie . . .
   219. OCF Posted: January 11, 2010 at 12:08 AM (#3433549)
128 years of the St. Louis Cardinals, and all the other nicknames that franchise was known by. I did this by looking through bb-ref team pages and hoping that I would click and recognize an HoM name as it scrolled past. I could easily have missed someone - I nearly missed the first two years of Simmons. If you spot someone I missed, say something.

Here are the years with no HoM player. (Well, there's also 2002-2009, but all of those years include Albert Pujols, among others.)

1882-1883
1888-1890
1898
1902
1908
1913-1914
1945

That's just 11 out of 120 (11 out of 128 if you include Pujols) years with no HoMer, and none since 1945, and only one since 1914. And the 1945 team did have a HoFer (Schoendienst) and that team certainly retained the rights to Musial and Slaughter even though they didn't play.

As for the teams that did have HoMers:

1884-1887 Caruthers
1891 Griffith
1892 Glasscock, Griffith
1893 Glasscock
1894-1897 Connor
1899 Burkett, Childs, Wallace, Young
1900 Burkett, McGraw, Wallace, Young
1901 Wallace
1903 M.Brown
1904-1905 Beckley, Nichols
1906-1907 Beckley
1909-1912 Bresnahan
1915-1917 Hornsby
1918 Hornsby, Wallace
1919-1925 Hornsby
1926 Alexander, Hornsby
1927-1929 Alexander, Frisch
1930-1932 Frisch
1933 Frisch, Medwick, Hornsby
1934 Frisch, Medwick, Vance
1935 Frisch, Medwick
1936-1937 Frisch, Medwick, Mize
1938-1940 Medwick, Mize, Slaughter
1941 Mize, Slaughter, Musial
1942 Slaughter, Musial
1943-1944 Musial

(To be continued in another post)
   220. OCF Posted: January 11, 2010 at 12:24 AM (#3433559)
Continued. A the end, [] will be someone who is not yet in the HoM but is certain to be, and {} encloses someone for whom future election is or may be possible.

1946 Musial, Slaughter
1947-1948 Medwick, Musial, Slaughter
1949-1953 Musial, Slaughter
1954 Musial
1955-1956 Boyer, Musial
1957 Boyer, Musial, Wilhelm
1958 Boyer, Musial
1959-1961 Boyer, Gibson, Musial
1962 Boyer, Gibson, Minoso, Musial
1963 Boyer, Gibson, Musial
1964 Boyer, Gibson
1965-1967 Carlton, Gibson
1968 Carlton, Gibson, Simmons
1969 Carlton, Gibson, Simmons, Torre
1970 Allen, Carlton, Gibson, Simmons, Torre
1971 Carlton, Gibson, Simmons, Torre
1972-1973 Gibson, Simmons, Torre
1974 Gibson, Hernandez, Simmons, R.Smith, Torre
1975 Gibson, Hernandez, Simmons, R.Smith
1976 Henandez, Simmons, R.Smith
1977-1980 Hernandez, Simmons
1981 Hernandez
1982-1983 Hernandez, O.Smith
1984-1989 O.Smith
1990 O.Smith {L.Smith}
1991 O.Smith {Moyer, L.Smith}
1992-1993 O.Smith {L.Smith}
1994-1996 O.Smith
1997-1999 McGwire
2000 W.Clark, McGwire {Edmonds}
2001 McGwire [Pujols] {Edmonds}
2002 [Pujols] {Edmonds}
2003 [Pujols] {Edmonds, Haren, Rolen}
2004 [Pujols] {Edmonds, Haren, Rolen, Walker}
2005-2006 [Pujols] {Edmonds, Walker, Rolen}
2007 [Pujols] {Edmonds, Rolen}
2008 [Pujols]
2009 [Pujols] {Smoltz}

I suppose Carpenter and Glaus could also get {} in appropriate years - but that may be assuming too much possible future. Of course, the same could be said of Haren. In any case, the Cardinals from 2002 on are certainly covered by at least one HoMer in Pujols.
   221. Paul Wendt Posted: January 11, 2010 at 12:41 AM (#3433566)
"If you spot someone I missed, say something."

OCF,
These are the probable undercounts, corrected, by reference to a lahman database (derived from the baseball-databank that recently underlies Baseball-Reference). Merely "probable" because in-season returns to team will be double-counted (eg, Charley Jones, CIN, NL, 1877).

St Louis AA/NL 1882-1945
1892 four - CARUTHERS, GALVIN, Glasscock, Griffith
1894 two
1901 two - BURKETT & Wallace
1913 one
1917 two
1932 two
1933 four

Beginning 1946 the same count continues
1946/1949 = 2 3 3 2
2 2 2 2 1 2 2 3 2 3
3 3 4 3 2 3 2 2 3 4
5 4 3 3 5 4 3 2 2 2
2 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1
1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1
2 1 = 2000/2001

By the way, the 1970 Cardinals lead all major league teams in the number of players with some number of career win shares (eg, 200 or more). Or they tie for the lead. --iirc, errorprone
   222. OCF Posted: January 11, 2010 at 12:56 AM (#3433572)
Ack! I had Galvin in 92 - it's on the piece of paper in front of me. I miscopied that as Griffith when I typed it up - but then I seem to have missed Griffith anyway, along with Caruthers.

I'll have to go back and check those other years.
   223. OCF Posted: January 11, 2010 at 01:15 AM (#3433577)
Hmm. bb-ref does not show Griffith as playing for St. Louis in 1892. Or any major league team, for that matter.

1894: I missed Pete Browning (2 games, 7 PA)

1901: Yes, Burkett was a regular. Not sure how I missed him.

1913: Jimmy Sheckard. That's who I missed. So scratch 1913 off the "none" list and we're down to 10 of those.

1917: Bobby Wallace, same as 1918. That's who I missed.

1932: I missed Medwick (a 20 year old part-timer)

1933: Dazzy Vance is the one I missed, although I did find him in 1934.

1965: I cut Boyer off a year too early - he was still there. Should read Boyer, Carlton, Gibson.

And I missed Eckersley. It should read:

1996: Eckersley, O.Smith
1997: Eckersley, McGwire

The rest of the 1946-2001 count seems to agree with what I have. I seem to have come into agreement with Paul with the one exception of 1892.

Interesting that the longest stretch of 1's in there is Ozzie's time, and does include two pennants, while the really big numbers 1969-1974 do not correspond to that much team success.
   224. Howie Menckel Posted: January 11, 2010 at 02:43 AM (#3433625)
The Mets' HOMers, in order of when they first played for them - how many of these guys seem like METS to you?

Ashburn
Snider
Spahn
Berra
KBoyer
NRyan
Seaver
Mays
Torre
KHernandez
GCarter
Saberhagen
Murray
Randolph
RHenderson
Alomar

Among holdovers, only Cone seems to have a decent shot of ever getting elected.

The "blank" years throgh the 1990s are 1964, 1978-82, 1990-91 (Cone?), 1996-98 (Piazza picks up the latter year)
   225. Howie Menckel Posted: January 11, 2010 at 02:49 AM (#3433628)
Deletes with Sheckard already being corrected above..
   226. Howie Menckel Posted: January 11, 2010 at 03:13 AM (#3433638)
Indians missed in 1901 (3B Bill Bradley the most memorable) - but then not again until 1960 (Don Newcombe, Havey Kuenn and Jimmy Piersall - and the "crappy" Joe Morgan not the HOMer).
That's impressive - Boudreau got them thru the war years.

But the came a 1960s-long HOMer drought stemmed only by Early Wynn in 1963.

Luis Tiant arrives in 1964, and plays with Tommy John for one year, then sticks around. But so far, no dice.

Graig Nettles finally stops the (HOM) bleeding in 1971, but another drought comes in 1978-80 (Barry Bonds at least, in 1979).

1988-89 and 1991-93 also barren, with the other years filled by over-the-hill gang mercenaries.

At least Thome and Manny are there by 1993, so the subsequent years will be ok....
   227. OCF Posted: January 11, 2010 at 03:23 AM (#3433644)
Barry Bonds at least, in 1979).

I think you mean his daddy. Barry was 14 year old.
   228. Howie Menckel Posted: January 11, 2010 at 04:01 AM (#3433655)
heh.
Bobby.

And old enough to have Bobby's rookie card, too.
:(
   229. Paul Wendt Posted: January 11, 2010 at 05:30 AM (#3433701)
222. OCF Posted: January 10, 2010 at 06:56 PM (#3433572)
Ack! I had Galvin in 92 - it's on the piece of paper in front of me. I miscopied that as Griffith when I typed it up - but then I seem to have missed Griffith anyway, along with Caruthers.

Later,
The rest of the 1946-2001 count seems to agree with what I have. I seem to have come into agreement with Paul with the one exception of 1892.

Ha, that was the only team-season whose HOM players I fetched, rather than merely counted, but I supposed the OCF listings correct and stopped with the requisite number of others (uppercase). Too many G's.

1892 CARUTHERS, GALVIN, Glasscock, GORE


224. Howie Menckel Posted: January 10, 2010 at 08:43 PM (#3433625)
The Mets' HOMers, in order of when they first played for them - how many of these guys seem like METS to you?

One. Seaver is a primary Mets to me.

Ashburn, Hernandez, Carter, and manager Randolph are secondary Mets.
Perhaps Ashburn was the leadoff batter, primary in another sense.

So you have a lot of tertiary Mets!
   230. Chris Fluit Posted: January 12, 2010 at 05:38 PM (#3435432)
How about checking World Series winners or WS participants? Where WS winners have HoFers was a topic on BBTF; the first two WS winners without a HoFer were the '81 Dodgers and '84 Tigers. Both of those teams have HoMers (in the case of the '81 Dodgers, just barely - a very part time Reggie Smith.)

In a one-shot check of a notorious team, I found that the 1914 Miracle Braves didn't have a HoMer. (Two HoFers in Evers and Maranville.) Any other such teams?


I have that information at home. I'll try to remember to post it tonight.

Off-hand, I remember the 1917 New York Giants (HoFer George Kelly played in 11 games, George Burns came the closest to the HoM), 1918 Chicago Cubs (unless you want to count Pete Alexander's 3 games pitched) and the 1939 and '40 Cincinnati Reds (though a good Bucky Walters campaign could solve that).

More recently, the 1988 LA Dodgers are missing (though Orel Hershiser picks up a few votes) as are the 1991 Minnesota Twins (Blyleven was on the '87 team, Puckett is a former top ten returnee for both).

Most of the Negro League pennant winners are represented as well (Dick Lundy's relatively recent induction helped out on a couple). I know that at least one of the Birmingham Black Barons pennants is missing (with Artie Wilson being the best candidate from that team) though their last championship team had Willie Mays.
   231. OCF Posted: January 12, 2010 at 06:07 PM (#3435468)
1918 Chicago Cubs (unless you want to count Pete Alexander's 3 games pitched)

I think that by the standards we've been working with since post 216 (and the HoF standard in the BBTF thread that I was reacting to), Alexander counts and those Cubs do have a HoMer. Note that Alexander would be their only HoFer as well. The claim was made (which I haven't verified) that every WS winner before the '81 Dodgers had at least one HoFer; to make that claim for the 1918 Cubs, they were counting Alexander.

Not only that, if you were to institute a token appearance exception, I'd have to completely redo posts 219, 220, 223.

Speaking of that 1918 Cubs team: who was Charlie Hollocher and what happened to him? On that team, Hollocher was a 22 year old rookie SS with a 134 OPS+. That's getting into some pretty rarified air as rookie seasons go - how many can you think of with a better debut than that? That rookie year was his highest OPS+ but he had other good years; he could hit. But he only played for 7 seasons, and in 3 of the 7, including the last two, he had 80 games or less. His range factors and Fldg% seem near league average, and he never played any position other than SS, so no sign that he was miscast there. I'm guessing that he was injury-prone.
   232. Howie Menckel Posted: January 13, 2010 at 01:47 AM (#3436109)
I decided to look at the St. Louis Browns/Baltimore Orioles (also, in 1901 they were Milwaukee Brewers, then moved to St. Louis - no 1901 Brewer HOMers, though Hugh Duffy has the most vote-pts ever for a guy never elected).

No-HOMer years:
BROWNS
1923
1928-29
1938-46
1948-50 (so 13 non-HOMer yrs with only Willard Brown's misbegotten play in 1947 breaking the schneid)

ORIOLES
1954 (Brooks Robinson's coffee cup in 1955 is the first white Oriole-Brown since 1937, and Brooks and Wilhelm in 1959 are the first white full-time HOMers here since Goslin in 1932; Satchel Paige filled some holes)

2002-03 (no hope unless Sidney Ponson turns on the afterburners, lol)

(Palmeiro covers 2004-05)
   233. Howie Menckel Posted: January 13, 2010 at 02:34 AM (#3436161)
NO HOMers, finished 1st
1914 Braves
1917 Giants
1940 Reds (1939 crew had Al Simmons for 9 G)
1944 Browns

1983 Dodgers
1985 Dodgers
1991 Twins (but they have Puckett)
1993 Phillies (but they have Schilling)

and for some 'a bit early to call' s, thru 2004
2000/02-03 Athletics (Giambi/Tejada/EChavez/THudson?)
2002-04 Twins (Santana off to a nice start)
2004 Dodgers (SFinley/Ventura/EJackson???)


I'm not listing: 1991-92 Pirates (Bonds), 1991-04 Braves (Smoltz and Glavine, then Maddux), 1994* Expos* (Pedro Martinez), 1994-95 Dodgers (Piazza), 1995 Red Sox (Clemens), 1995 and 1997 Mariners (Randy Johnson and Griffey Jr), 1997-02 Astros (Bagwell and Biggio, then RJ), 1997/2000/03 Giants (Bonds), 1997-98 Indians (Manny and Thome), 1999-02 Diamondbacks (RJohnson), 1999-04 Yankees (Jeter, Clemens etc), 1999 Rangers (I-Rodriguez), 2000 White Sox (FThomas), 2003 Cubs (Sosa), 2004 Angels (Vlad), 2004 Cardinals (Albert)
   234. Yoenis Cespedes, Baseball Savant Posted: January 13, 2010 at 03:44 AM (#3436192)
@OCF: I'm at work, so I don't have my Abstract with me or time to confirm the story of Charlie Hollocher online. From what I can remember, Hollocher was injury-prone, but not in the typical sense. My reading of Bill James' comment on Hollocher was that he possibly suffered from hypochondria; one season, he jumped the team because he was feeling "pretty lousy" and went home. He almost certainly suffered from some form of mental illness. He committed suicide in his 40s, I think, by a shotgun blast to the head.
   235. Repoz Posted: January 13, 2010 at 03:59 AM (#3436204)
He committed suicide in his 40s, I think, by a shotgun blast to the head.

From Dan Gutman's Baseball Babylon..."But throughout Hollocher's seven-year carer, he complained of severe stomach pains that kept him out of the lineup a good part of the time. At age 44, he shot himself in the throat in St Louis."
   236. OCF Posted: January 13, 2010 at 04:53 AM (#3436239)
I want to thank both James and Repoz for the last two posts.

I've read both the BJHBA and the NBJHBA and I confess that the name "Charlie Hollocher" didn't ring any bells. Of course, that may be just me failing to remember something I read. Is he somewhere on the page of baseball-related suicides?

The whole exchange does serve as a perfect illustration of another Bill James article that I do remember, quite well. It was in one of his yearly abstracts. He presented the year-by-year statistical lines of two players, and started talking about them. It was obvious which one was fast and which one was slow. You could clearly see the career-altering injury that one of them suffered - maybe a leg injury. He started talking about what the public perception of each player was - and yet, both of them were wholly fictional, statistical lines conjured out of thin air. His point was to illustrate one of the tremendous attractions of baseball statistics, which is that the statistics themselves tell stories.

A bb-ref page contains only statistical information, but it contains considerably more information than James put into that article - which means that it's even better at telling stories. I didn't know anything at all about Charlie Hollocher - or at least, I couldn't remember that I'd ever known anything about him. I got led to the 1918 Cubs by the question of whether they had any HoMers. (Alexander, but just barely.) I stayed to look at the page - they must have at least had some good players. I saw that the highest OPS+ among regulars belonged to the 22 year old SS, which took me to Hollocher's page. And Hollocher's page told a story. This man could really play baseball - but why didn't he play more of it? Why did he miss so many games, why was he gone so young?

All this about a man who was dead many years before I was born, a many who never played on television and for whom there probably aren't many, if any, moving pictures. His statistics alone tell enough of his story to make us want to hear more of it. And that was precisely the point of that Bill James article.
   237. jimd Posted: January 15, 2010 at 09:05 PM (#3438630)
One question is how to tally.

Umm... Traditional 1-10 MVP ballots?

James extolled its virtues in his HOF book.
We used it as the model for the HOM ballot.
(We extended it, but probably not enough.)

If its not broke, why fix it?
Page 3 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Infinite Joost (Voxter)
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Syndicate

Page rendered in 0.2915 seconds
49 querie(s) executed