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

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Most Meritorious Player: 1910 Ballot

For 1910, each voter should rank the top 10 players from all leagues combined.

Balloting is scheduled to close at 4pm EDT on 4 November 2015.

Anyone can vote, even if you do not normally participate in Hall of Merit discussions. If have never participated in an MMP election, just post a preliminary ballot in the discussion thread by 3 November 2015.

For detailed rules see one of our previous ballots.

 

DL from MN Posted: October 21, 2015 at 02:17 PM | 22 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. DL from MN Posted: October 21, 2015 at 05:14 PM (#5074176)
Giving two weeks
   2. Chris Fluit Posted: October 21, 2015 at 10:36 PM (#5074831)
1910 Ballot

It's a very AL heavy ballot as the young stars of the junior circuit begin to shine- though one of the old guard still comes out on top.

1. Napoleon Lajoie, 2B/1B, Cleveland Naps
2. Ty Cobb, CF/RF, Detroit Tigers: Cobb outhit Lajoie (206 to 199 OPS+) and wielded the better glove (+8 fielding runs to -1) so how does Lajoie come out on top? It's partly playing time (Lajoie led the AL with 159 games while Cobb had a respectable 140) but mostly position as 2B is more valuable than CF
3. Ed Walsh, P, Chicago White Sox
4. Walter Johnson, P, Washington Senators
5. Jack Coombs, P, Philadelphia Athletics: 1-2-3 in MLB ERA+, 2-1-3 in MLB IP
6. Pete Hill, CF, Chicago Leland Giants: a 327 OPS+ is absolutely nuts
7. Eddie Collins, 2B, Philadelphia Athletics: 152 OPS+ but the +24 fielding runs is really eye-catching
8. Tris Speaker, CF, Boston Red Sox: 170 OPS+ to go along with +8 fielding
9. Sherry Magee, LF/CF, Philadelphia Phillies: NL leading 174 OPS+ and 114 Runs Created
10. Christy Mathewson, P, New York Giants: 2nd in ERA+ (157) and 1st in IP (318)

11. Russ Ford, P, New York Highlanders: 160 ERA+ but 299 innings trails the leaders by quite a lot
12. Honus Wagner, SS, Pittsburgh Pirates: it's an off year for Wagner but it's good enough for third in the NL
13. Frank Wickware, P, Chicago Leland Giants: the best pitcher in the Negro Leagues
14. John Henry Lloyd, SS, Chicago Leland Giants
15. Mordecai Brown, P, Chicago Cubs: 3rd in ERA+ (155) with almost 300 IP (295, to be precise)
16. Solly Hofman, CF/1B, Chicago Cubs: tied for 2nd in OPS+ (154)
17. George Mullin, P, Detroit Tigers
18. King Cole, P, Chicago Cubs
19. Ray Collins, P, Boston Red Sox
20. Larry Doyle, 2B, New York Giants
   3. bjhanke Posted: October 22, 2015 at 04:39 AM (#5075212)
Chris - I'm not going to complain about your ranking of Cobb and Lajoie, because the playing time point is absolutely valid, but I'm not so sure that, in 1910, 2B was a more valuable defensive spot than CF. It is now, but I'm not sure of 1910, because double plays were much less frequent than now. BTW, most of what I just said I cribbed from the New Historical.

Also, while I'm not about to complain about Pete Hill or Pop Lloyd, I believe, again cribbed from the New Historical, that 1910 was the year where there was no negro league at all. So those Leland Giants just overran all the barnstorming teams they played. They're more similar to the Cincy team of 1870 than a major league team, just because there's no real competition. What I remember as the crib for this was a mention from Rube Foster that he thought those 1910 Giants were the best baseball team he had ever seen, in any league. - Brock
   4. Chris Fluit Posted: October 22, 2015 at 09:57 AM (#5075308)
No worries, Brock. I double-checked the positional value between 2B and CF before I posted my prelim ballot. According to baseball-reference, 2B had a positional value of zero for 1910, dead even on the defensive scale. That was the case throughout the latter half of Lajoie's career as 2B fluctuated between +1 and -1 from 1905 to 1916. However, CF was also considered more of a bat position at the time as well, and bb-ref lists it at -4 for 1910 (as well as '11 and '12). So Lajoie does receive a greater position bonus than Cobb, even if the relationship between 2B and CF was different than it is today. It also hurts Cobb that he played 26 games in RF while Lajoie only played 10 at 1B.

However, as I'm looking at it for the third time, I realize that my calculations were a little off. The playing time difference offsets the difference in OPS+ but the positional difference only accounts for half the difference in fielding runs. I should have Cobb ahead by a nose, rather than Lajoie.

As for Pete Hill, I'm content to leave him where he is. You're right that competitive balance between the Negro League teams could be pretty lopsided. The Philadelphia Giants absolutely crushed weaker competition over the past four years and the Leland Giants snapped up most of their players to do the same in 1910. I regressed Hill's 327 OPS more than normal for that reason but his regressed numbers are still good enough for 6th place.
   5. DL from MN Posted: October 22, 2015 at 10:54 AM (#5075402)
Chris - do you want to switch Cobb and Lajoie?
   6. DL from MN Posted: October 22, 2015 at 01:11 PM (#5075603)
1) Napoleon Lajoie - great season at the plate, slightly better against positional average than Cobb
2) Ty Cobb - sitting out to protect your stats sucks
3) Eddie Collins - great postseason
4) Ed Walsh - best pitcher
5) Tris Speaker - Assuming Hill was the better hitter but Speaker was the better fielder
6) Walter Johnson
7) Russ Ford - another good pitcher on a lousy team
8) John Henry Lloyd - Best SS in baseball
9) Pete Hill - peak hitting season
10) Honus Wagner

11-15) Jack Coombs, Sherry Magee, Christy Mathewson, Solly Hoffman, Frank Baker
16-20) Ed Konetchy, Charles Earle, Donie Bush, Nap Rucker, Danny Murphy
   7. Chris Fluit Posted: October 22, 2015 at 04:25 PM (#5075821)
Chris - do you want to switch Cobb and Lajoie?

Yup. I had to leave for a funeral so I wasn't able to get around to it right away.

1910 Ballot- Revised

1. Ty Cobb, CF/RF, Detroit Tigers: Cobb outhit Lajoie (206 to 199 OPS+) and wielded the better glove (+8 fielding runs to -1) though Lajoie narrows the gap with playing time (Lajoie led the AL with 159 games while Cobb had a respectable 140) and positional credit
2. Napoleon Lajoie, 2B/1B, Cleveland Naps
3. Ed Walsh, P, Chicago White Sox
4. Walter Johnson, P, Washington Senators
5. Jack Coombs, P, Philadelphia Athletics: 1-2-3 in MLB ERA+, 2-1-3 in MLB IP
6. Pete Hill, CF, Chicago Leland Giants: a 327 OPS+ is absolutely nuts
7. Eddie Collins, 2B, Philadelphia Athletics: 152 OPS+ but the +24 fielding runs is really eye-catching
8. Tris Speaker, CF, Boston Red Sox: 170 OPS+ to go along with +8 fielding
9. Sherry Magee, LF/CF, Philadelphia Phillies: NL leading 174 OPS+ and 114 Runs Created
10. Christy Mathewson, P, New York Giants: 2nd in ERA+ (157) and 1st in IP (318)

11. Russ Ford, P, New York Highlanders: 160 ERA+ but 299 innings trails the leaders by quite a lot
12. Honus Wagner, SS, Pittsburgh Pirates: it's an off year for Wagner but it's good enough for third in the NL
13. Frank Wickware, P, Chicago Leland Giants: the best pitcher in the Negro Leagues
14. John Henry Lloyd, SS, Chicago Leland Giants
15. Mordecai Brown, P, Chicago Cubs: 3rd in ERA+ (155) with almost 300 IP (295, to be precise)
16. Solly Hofman, CF/1B, Chicago Cubs: tied for 2nd in OPS+ (154)
17. George Mullin, P, Detroit Tigers
18. King Cole, P, Chicago Cubs
19. Ray Collins, P, Boston Red Sox
20. Larry Doyle, 2B, New York Giants
   8. DL from MN Posted: October 29, 2015 at 03:05 PM (#5082682)
Less than a week left
   9. bjhanke Posted: October 30, 2015 at 01:56 AM (#5082980)
This is Brock Hanke’s final ballot for the 1910 Most Meritorious Player. Boy, was this a weird one. I’ve been complaining about the disconnect between Win Shares and WAR in evaluating players ever since the project started, and then there’s this season. There is no disconnect. I have a tie at first place, another at third place, AND another at fifth. It doesn’t even spread out from there, although I have no more ties. But the lowest ranking, in either system, by any player who made the composite top ten is 11th. Christy Mathewson is 11th in WAR (8th in Win Shares), and Sherry Magee is 11th in Win Shares (4th in WAR). These, BTW, are the best pitcher and position player in the NL; everyone else on the list is AL.

At this point, the ballot would be trivial, except for one teeny problem: Where to put a negro player or two? There is no negro league this year; all the superstars are probably on the Leland Giants. But who? Pete Hill? Rube Foster? Pop Lloyd? Smokey Joe Williams? This would be bad enough, but Seamheads is going through a server software upgrade of some sort (involving Apache, a quality server company, so they are not the problem), and I can’t get through to the site (which Apache explains will happen in the page they put up when you try to get to Seamheads). So, what I have to do is make an undereducated guess. Well, if I have to do that, I’m going for Pop Lloyd, largely because he was a shortstop, and that position has more opportunity to contribute to the defense than any other position except catcher and pitcher. With ties to deal with through 6th place, I just slotted Lloyd in at 7th because it seems more plausible than anywhere else. If anything, I have him underranked, and there might be another negro player or two who would make the top ten, if they had any competition to justify their stats, and I had that info. So, Mathewson drops off the ballot, and I end up with:

1. Ty Cobb
2. Ed Walsh
3. Nap Lajoie
4. Eddie Collins
5. Walter Johnson
6. Russ Ford
7. Pop Lloyd
8. Jack Coombs
9. Sherry Magee
10. Tris Speaker
   10. DL from MN Posted: October 30, 2015 at 11:16 AM (#5083122)
Brock - there was discussion on Pete Hill in the discussion thread. He's the other black player to strongly consider in 1910.
   11. toratoratora Posted: October 30, 2015 at 11:49 AM (#5083175)
Toratoratora Final 1010 Ballot:

The youth revolution continues in 1910. Of the top 15 batters in OPS+, only two are in their 30’s and those are Inner Circle guys, Wagner and Lajoie. Meanwhile six are 23 and younger, led by fellow Inner Circler's (circulars?) Cobb, Speaker and Collins. The AL is loaded with young Southern talent

1-Ty Cobb: Wins the stat geek triple crown for the 2nd straight year, 206 OPS+, .383/.456/.551/1.008, +8 rField, +7 rBase, 65 SB. Just a studly year all around

2-Eddie Collins: .324/.382/.418/.800, 152 OPS+, +10 rBase, a Lajoie-esque +24 rField, 85 SB. Post Season Deity with a .429 /.478/ .619/ 1.097 line. They called him Cocky. He had reason to be.

3-Walter Johnson: 370 IP, 183 ERA+. 313 K and 1.39 FIP boost him over Walsh

4-Napoleon Lajoie: At 35, all Nap does is hit 51 2b, lead the majors in TB, goes .384/.445/.514/.960. Poor baserunning and a down year fielding knock him a bit (After years of double digits rField, Nap finally falls into the negatives in 1910)

5-Ed Walsh: 369 IP, Major league leading 189 ERA+

6-Jack Coombs: 353 IP, 182 ERA+, 2.03 FIP. Not only goes 3-0 in WS but hit .385 to boot

7-Sherry Magee: Best season of his career. Best National League position player. Leads league in Runs, RBI, BA, OPS, SLG, OPS+, and TB. Not half bad.

8-Tris Speaker: 340/.404/.468/.873, 170 OPS+, +8 rField.

9-Pete Hill: Best NL player. 327 OPS+ in limited sample against questionable competition. I could likely place him anywhere from 5th to here but I’m erring on the side of conservatism.

10-Russ Ford: 299 IP in a home park with a 106 PF, 160 ERA+, .0881 WHIP

11-Christy Mathewson: 318 IP, 157 ERA+
12-JH Lloyd
13-Honus Wagner
14-Nap Rucker
15-Solly Hofman
   12. toratoratora Posted: October 31, 2015 at 02:56 AM (#5084200)
Am I the only one that can see the 2010 discussion but not ballot on the main newsfeed page?
   13. DL from MN Posted: October 31, 2015 at 09:28 AM (#5084217)
I have noticed there is some screwiness at the moment with the site
   14. bjhanke Posted: October 31, 2015 at 10:15 AM (#5084230)
DL - Yes, I read the Pete Hill discussion. His OPS+ looks godlike, until you realize that it was all against barnstorming teams. I'd have tried to compare him to Lloyd, trying to figure out the defensive difference as well as the offensive, except I couldn't get to Seamheads. Besides. Pete Hill would have had to beat out Tris Speaker for the last spot. Tough competition. - Brock
   15. DL from MN Posted: November 03, 2015 at 09:56 AM (#5087373)
I'm reposting caiman's ballot over here

21. caiman Posted: November 01, 2015 at 01:47 AM (#5085074)
Here's my top 10 as per RPA run value:

1. Ty Cobb 57.98 runs
2. Sherry Magee 55.37 runs
3. Nap Lajoie 54.93 runs
4. Tris Speaker 41.43 runs
5. Ed Walsh 40.69 runs
6. Russ Ford 38.40 runs
7. Walter Johnson 37.28 runs
8. Fred Snodgrass 36.66 runs
9. Eddie Collins 31.04 runs
10. Ed Konetchy 30.51 runs
   16. DL from MN Posted: November 03, 2015 at 09:58 AM (#5087377)
Voted recently but not yet this year

John Murphy
Michael Binkley
Eric C
neilsen
   17. EricC Posted: November 03, 2015 at 10:46 AM (#5087437)
1910 MMP ballot.

1. Ty Cobb
2. Nap Lajoie
3. Ed Walsh
4. Walter Johnson
5. Jack Coombs
6. Eddie Collins
7. Pete Hill
8. Russ Ford
9. Sherwood Magee
10. Christie Mathewson
   18. Michael J. Binkley's anxiety closet Posted: November 03, 2015 at 02:24 PM (#5087739)
My 1910 MMP Ballot:

1. Ty Cobb
2. Nap Lajoie
3. Eddie Collins
4. Walter Johnson - MMPitcher (I think he might win a few of these)
5. Ed Walsh
6. Pete Hill NeL MMP
7. Russ Ford
8. Tris Speaker
9. Jack Coombs
10. Christy Mathewson - NL MMP

NL MMPosition - Sherry Magee
   19. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 04, 2015 at 02:30 PM (#5088575)
Official 1910 MMP Ballot (no postseason bonuses and a very slight downward adjustment for AL players - the junior circuit still kicked serious butt, anyway):

1) Ty Cobb: Easily the best ML player and center fielder.
2) Nap Lajoie: Best ML second baseman.
3) Eddie Collins
4) Ed Walsh: Best ML pitcher.
5) Jack Coombs
6) Walter Johnson
7) Tris Speaker:
8) Sherry Magee: Best ML player and left fielder
9) Russ Ford
10) Pete Hill: Guessing here, but an educated guess, nevertheless - best NeL player.

The best NL pitcher, Christy Mathewson, was number #11 on my list.
   20. Yardape Posted: November 04, 2015 at 03:31 PM (#5088647)
My ballot:

1. Ty Cobb - Clear no. 1 among ML position players.
2. Eddie Collins
3. Nap Lajoie - Collins edges Lajoie, in part thanks to WS play.
4. Walter Johnson - Best ML Pitcher
5. Ed Walsh
6. Pete Hill - Raked, but against what competition? Good Cuban play helps his case.
7. Jose Mendez - Actually feel better about his numbers, since they all came in the Cuban League or the American Series.
8. Christy Mathewson - best NL pitcher
9. Jack Coombs
10. Russ Ford

I have Solly Hoffmann as the best NL position player.
   21. DL from MN Posted: November 04, 2015 at 04:06 PM (#5088713)
balloting is closed
   22. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: November 04, 2015 at 05:59 PM (#5088874)
8) Sherry Magee: Best ML player and left fielder


Obviously, I meant NL, not ML.

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