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Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Most Meritorious Player: 1988 Discussion

Oakland sweeps the Red Sox in the ALCS. The Dodgers beat the Mets in 7 games. The Dodgers beat the A’s in the World Series highlighted by Kirk Gibson’s pinch-hit HR.

After this ballot we will vote for 2013 and then jump back to 1950.

MMP voting will end on December 4, 2013.

Player			SH WS		BBR WAR
Kirk Gibson		33.2		6.5
Wade Boggs		33.9		8.2
Jose Canseco		39.2		7.3
Kirby Puckett		31.1		7.7
Mike Greenwell		29.5		7.5
Will Clark		34.0		6.6
Barry Larkin		27.0		7.0
Ozzie Smith		22.4		6.6
Cal Ripken		24.1		5.7
Alan Trammell		24.8		6.0
Tony Fernandez		22.6		4.4
Brett Butler		29.3		6.8
Kal Daniels		25.4		5.6
Barry Bonds		26.8		6.2
Kevin McReynolds	28.1		4.5
Rickey Henderson	28.2		6.3
Andy Van Slyke		31.0		6.4
Darryl Strawberry	32.0		5.4
Fred McGriff		26.9		6.2
Eric Davis		23.8		4.4
Dave Henderson		28.1		6.3
Paul Molitor		27.6		5.2
Dave Winfield		29.5		5.4
Bobby Bonilla		29.1		5.1
Chris Sabo		18.1		5.1
Kelly Gruber		20.3		5.2
Gary Gaetti		22.0		4.3
Andres Galarraga	25.6		5.7
Ryne Sandberg		20.3		4.6
Roberto Alomar		20.4		4.3
Julio Franco		22.6		2.3
George Brett		26.7		5.2
Robin Yount		31.0		5.7
Ellis Burks		22.7		5.3
Tony Pena		16.7		2.4
Mike Scioscia		16.1		2.0
Bob Boone		14.9		3.2
Benito Santiago		15.0		3.1


Pitcher
Frank Viola		25.1		7.7
Orel Hershiser		25.1		7.1
Mark Gubicza		24.5		7.8
Roger Clemens		21.6		7.1
Ted Higuera		22.3		7.4
David Cone		19.6		5.8
Greg Swindell		19.6		5.9
Mark Langston		18.9		5.7
Allan Anderson		18.8		5.2
Tom Candiotti		17.3		5.7
Danny Jackson		22.2		5.1
John Tudor		16.7		4.9
Charlie Liebrandt	17.5		5.2
Greg Maddux		19.3		5.6
Charlie Hough		17.4		3.9
Dave Stewart		17.7		4.5
Dave Stieb		16.4		4.3

Mike Henneman		17.2		3.4
Mark Davis		17.6		3.3
John Franco		18.5		3.0
Doug Jones		17.7		3.2

 

DL from MN Posted: November 06, 2013 at 02:10 PM | 57 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. DL from MN Posted: November 06, 2013 at 02:22 PM (#4595045)
By position

C - I suppose Bob Boone
1B - Will Clark
2B - Lou Whitaker
SS - Barry Larkin
3B - Wade Boggs
LF - Kirk Gibson
CF - Kirby Puckett
RF - Jose Canseco

LHP - Frank Viola
RHP - Orel Hershiser
   2. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: November 06, 2013 at 11:05 PM (#4595321)
Where's Mickey Hatcher? Grrrr.
   3. OCF Posted: November 07, 2013 at 12:28 AM (#4595346)
Hershiser had an amazing post-season run. And a pretty darn good September as well.
   4. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 07, 2013 at 12:47 AM (#4595353)
Gibson as MVP is one of the only times I can remember that the media narrative behind an award was factual. The Dodgers were a soft team, and through force of will Gibby took them to the WS.
   5. toratoratora Posted: November 08, 2013 at 01:16 AM (#4596199)
through force of will

And a 148 OPS+
   6. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 08, 2013 at 02:49 AM (#4596217)
Yeah, that helped, too. :)

Apparently, one of Gibson's greater accomplishments was getting Marshall to play nearly every day by scaring the #### out of him so he wouldn't sit out with his "general soreness" crap.
   7. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 08, 2013 at 10:38 AM (#4596260)
1988 was the year in which Eckersley made all but three of his appearances with his team in the lead, and only one in which his team was behind - and when the trend of using your leading reliever only with the team in the lead first became noticeable, although it had been going on throughout the 80s.

Some top relievers, with total appearances and appearances with their teams leading or tied:

Bruce Sutter (ATL) 34/29
Lee Smith (BOS) 64/55
Bobby Thigpen (CHA) 68/57
Rich Gossage (CHN) 46/34
John Franco (CIN) 70/62
Doug Jones (CLE) 51/47
Mike Henneman (DET) 65/54
Jeff Reardon (MIN) 63/59
Eckersley (OAK) 60/59
Jim Gott (PIT) 67/54
Todd Worrell (STL) 68/61
Tom Henke (TOR) 52/40

Eckersley wasn't exactly a one-inning reliever (one of the charges levied against LaRussa that doesn't wash when you look at the data): 22 of his appearances occurred before the ninth inning and 23 lasted longer than an inning, and although that was fewer than most of the other top relievers it wasn't inconsistent with how they were being used. The one-inning phenomenon would wait a few more years, until Henke and Gregg Olson in 1991.

-- MWE
   8. AROM Posted: November 08, 2013 at 11:17 AM (#4596294)
Do the rules for this exercise require you to consider regular season only, or can that be combined with playoffs?

If the latter, then my vote is Hershiser. If the former, he's still a candidate but I'm undecided.
   9. toratoratora Posted: November 08, 2013 at 12:09 PM (#4596341)
1988, a season remembered for three greats acts-Canseco’s 40/40, Hershiser’s great run and the Gibson Homer. The A’s and Mets win 100, the Orioles start a MLB record worst 0-21 and what is thought to be the next great dynasty gets derailed in the series by the bulldog and the stuntmen, led by Mickey Hatcher who goes full-tilt Ortiz at the plate.

The AL story of the year is out West, the Bash Brothers, with McGwire following up on his rookie campaign with some regression but still a decent season and Canseco going full Dizzy Dean (“It ain’t bragging if you can back it up”), his year almost matching his ego as he achieved his preseason prediction of a 40/40 year (It’s also the first year I remember player steroid use being openly discussed in the stands). The A’s win 104, are balanced with a team 114 ER+ and a 109 team OPS, top pitching led by Dave Smoke Stewart and Bob Welch and a BP rounded out by the Eck and finish second in the league in runs despite playing in the Mausoleum.

Mike Greenwell had the Fenway faithful reminiscing about Fred Lynn, Wade Boggs had maybe the Wade Boggs year(How did I not know Wade led the league in IBB 6 years running-damn), dropping 19 homers, but hitting .366 with 45 doubles bounced off of the Monster to go with 125 walks for a career best .476 OBP (Gwynn also is Tony Gwynn, winning the NL Batting title),Winfield has his last really good year, the Crime Dog introduces himself with 34 HR and a 157 OPS, Kirby Puckett hits .356 with (80’s) power and with Kent Hrbek and Gary Gaetti having top years, forms a nasty combination for opposing pitchers to face in the homerdome.

On the pitching side, 24 year old Alan Anderson comes out of nowhere, wins the AL era and ERA+ titles for the Twins,has one more decent year and will be gone from baseball by 92, Teddy Higuera has the season of a fine career, Mark Gubicza (Yet another in a seemingly endless parade of young stud KC pitchers going back to the mid 70’s-it’s so strange to think of those days now)also has the best season of his life, and Frank Viola follows his fine 1987 with a Cy Young award season.

Youngsters are the theme of the year in the NL-coming on the scene are Barry Larkin with his first great year, leading the NL in WAR, Will Clark bursts out for the Giants,23 year old Barry Bonds has a 148 OPS+, good for 4th in the NL (And, showing a trend to come, finished fourth in the league in IBB) and Kal Daniels, one of history’s great could have beens(Oh what an OF he and Eric Davis could have been-speed, power, defense side by side. They could have been, would have been, should have been terrific), has the second of his three good years. On the NL Pitching side, Cards 23 year old Lefty Joe Magrane wins an unlikely ER title, going 5-9 with a 2.18 era.

The Mets pair recently acquired (For a stale donut and an old cold cup of coffee, AKA Ed Hearn and change) David Cone with the good Doctor(Who is suddenly, shockingly, the #2 man) to lead a deep and loaded pitching staff, Straw has the best year of his life, Howard Johnson leads baseball on IBB(!) and free agent acquisition Kevin McReynolds has a career Kevin McReyolds season, 27 HR, a 147 OPS and falls asleep in the OF regularly (I exaggerate, but he was notorious for appearing disinterested), and are the best team in the league.

Except they run into the bulldog. Orel Hershiser is the story of the season. Say what you like about the fluky nature of streaks, their utter irrelevance in the grand scheme of value judgment, debate whether late season games are more important than April games, but his stretch run and playoffs is one of the epic events of the decade. From Aug 30-Sept 28, the final game of the year, he went 59 Innings w/o allowing an earned run (Though there was a controversial Drysdalesque call that went his way and erased a run IIRC). In The NLCS his BP gave up game one, he lost game 3 despite allowing 1 earned in 7 IP, came out of the BP to close and save game four and shut out the Mets to clinch game seven.
Against the A’s in the WS, he followed the Gibson game 1 knife in the heart with a second straight shutout in game 2, essentially winning the series right there (The A’s were toast after this game. They looked as if they had been run over by a truck. They had no clue what the hell was happening to their juggernaut of a team as the pipsqueak Dodgers just aced them), before finishing them off in game five, allowing 2 earned to take the win and the series. Over the post-season he had 42.2 IP and allowed five earned. Adding insult to injury, he hit 1.000 in the WS, going 3-3 with 2 doubles and a 2.667 OPS and won every major sporting award for the year excepting of course, because pitchers can’t win it(Though Clemens did just a few seasons prior), the MLB MVP.
   10. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 12:25 PM (#4596359)
This was the first full regular season I started following baseball. Fun year. Royals had a good team, but were blown away by the Bash Brothers. Good memories. I had about half of the players listed above in Starting Lineup form.
   11. DL from MN Posted: November 08, 2013 at 12:38 PM (#4596369)
Playoff baseball counts for MMP. Exhibition games (All-Star, spring training, etc) don't.
   12. DL from MN Posted: November 08, 2013 at 02:20 PM (#4596463)
1988 prelim - no postseason workup yet

1) Kirk Gibson - DanR gives 1.4 FWAA znd 5.7 wins above positional average.
2) Wade Boggs - again
3) Jose Canseco - top 3 are very close
4) Barry Larkin
5) Ozzie Smith - 2.7 FWAA
6) Frank Viola - great back to back seasons
7) Cal Ripken
8) Orel Hershiser - top NL pitcher
9) Mike Greenwell
10) Mark Gubicza
11) Will Clark
12) Roger Clemens
13) Ted Higuera
14-21) Alan Trammell, Kirby Puckett, Brett Butler, Kal Daniels, Barry Bonds, Rickey Henderson, Andy Van Slyke, Darryl Strawberry
   13. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 08, 2013 at 04:04 PM (#4596577)
This was the year Clemens was 15-5, 2.23 through July but then had an 0-5, 7.33 August which wrecked his chances for the Cy Young award.

Finished 3-7 for the 18-12, 2.93 record.
   14. toratoratora Posted: November 09, 2013 at 12:50 AM (#4596838)
Making the Sox trade for Mike Boddicker and his 7-3 record with a 2.63 ERA imperative in their run at the division title
   15. Chris Fluit Posted: November 12, 2013 at 08:44 PM (#4598989)
1988 Prelim Ballot

1. Wade Boggs, 3B, Boston Red Sox (first on my ballot for the third year in a row): 2nd in OPS+, 1st in Runs Created, +2 fielding at third base
2. Mike Greenwell, LF, Boston Red Sox: 3rd in both OPS+ and Runs Created, +13 fielding runs in front of the Green Monster
3. Jose Canseco, RF, Oakland Athletics: 1st in OPS+, 2nd in Runs Created, -2 fielding runs; pretty close to Greenwell in total value- Jose had the better bat, Greenie the better glove- so I can see why Canseco beat Greenwell for the MVP if one ignores Boggs' consistent excellence
4. Orel Hershiser, P, Los Angeles Dodgers: best player in the National League; a 149 ERA+ in a league leading 267 innings; there was also something about a scoreless streak though that doesn't factor into the placement
5. Kirby Puckett, CF, Minnesota Twins: very good fielding (+6 runs) at a premium defensive position (center field); not a bad bat either (153 OPS+)
6. Will Clark, 1B, San Francisco Giants
7. Marc Gubicza, P, Kansas City Royals: surprised myself with my pick for the top AL pitcher; 149 EAR+ in a league leading 269 innings
8. Frank Viola, P, Minnesota Twins: 154 ERA+ in 255 innings
9. Fred McGriff, 1B, Toronto Blue Jays: not a whole lot of difference between Clark at #6 and McGriff at #9
10. Darryl Strawberry, RF, New York Mets: led the NL in OPS+ but dragged down by -6 fielding runs
11. Teddy Higuera, P, Milwaukee Brewers: I always thought Higuera was a one-year wonder but here he is on the ballot again thanks to a 162 ERA+ in 227 innings
12. Bobby Bonilla, 3B, Pittsburgh Pirates: 143 OPS+ and 106 runs created as a third baseman
13. Andy Van Slyke, CF, Pittsburgh Pirates: 144 OPS+ and +6 fielding runs

14. Paul Molitor, 3B/DH, Milwaukee Brewers: Molitor would have been 11th if he earned a full third base bonus but playing a third of his games at DH dropped him just off ballot
15. Roger Clemens, P, Boston Red Sox
16. Andres Galarraga, 1B, Montreal Expos: the Big Cat had a 150 OPS+ and +2 fielding runs
17. Barry Larkin, SS, Cincinnati Reds
18. Danny Jackson, P, Cincinnati Reds
19. Kirk Gibson, RF, Los Angeles Dodgers
20. David Cone, P, New York Mets

   16. toratoratora Posted: November 12, 2013 at 10:45 PM (#4599048)
Right now here's my prelim, subject to change. Comments will come with the final ballot.I'm using a blend of WAR systems and WS,some weighting.Players are granted points on a basis of finishing in the top ten,10 points for first place, 9 for second and so on:
1-Jose Canseco (108 points)-The only player to finish in the top ten in all systems
2-Darryl Strawberry (66)
3-Mike Greenwell (65)
4-Orel Hershiser (64)-I expect him to finish second when I factor in postseason WAR
5-Wade Boggs (61)
6-Will Clark (54)
7-Kirby Puckett (36)
8-Frank Viola (33)
9-Andy Van Slyke (28)
10-Kirk Gibson (23)
10-Barry Bonds (23)
12-Mark Gubicza (17)
13-Rickey!(16)

ETA-14-20 are:
14-Alan Trammel
15-Roger Clemens
16-Kevin McReynolds
17-Eric Davis
18-Dave Henderson
19-Galaragga
20-Barry Larkin

   17. OCF Posted: November 13, 2013 at 01:31 AM (#4599127)
The offensive roller-coaster ride took a big dip. Runs scored per team per game:

Year .NL. .AL.
1985 4.07 4.60
1986 4.17 4.66
1987 4.54 4.95
1988 3.87 4.40

So after the wild proto-sillyball year of 1987, the year in which everyone and his cousin hit 20 or 30 HR, offense crashed back to a level lower than it had been for most of the decade.

Now a loot at pitcher's RA equivalent records, both my old style (using team-level park factors and no defense) and my new style (using the customized environment numbers from bb-ref):

Old style:

Viola 20-9
Higuera 18-7
Gubicza 19-10
Clemens 19-10
Langston 17-12
Swindell 16-11
Candiotti 15-9

Hershiser 20-10 (bad hitter)
Cone 16-9 (bad hitter)
Tudor 14-8 (terrible hitter)
Maddux 16-12 (OK hitter)

New style:

Viola 19-9
Gubicza 20-10
Higuera 18-7
Clemens 19-10
Swindell 17-10
Candiotti 15-9
Langston 17-12

Hershiser 20-10 (bad hitter)
Cone 16-9 (bad hitter)
Maddux 17-11 (OK hitter)
Tudor 14-8 (terrible hitter)

The top pitchers are packed in pretty closely together, and I can see five different perfectly plausible candidates for the top spot. Based on the regular season, I would probably take Viola in the top spot, but Hershiser's postseason gives me something to think about.

I'll add that this was the season -and in particular the Dodgers' run - that got my then 6 year old son hooked on following baseball.

And talking about this season presents more than the usual number of spelling challenges, headed by figuring out which order the c and z go in Gubicza and which consonants are single and double in Galarraga.
   18. EricC Posted: November 13, 2013 at 06:33 AM (#4599141)
1988 prelim.

Comments:

(1) Given that win shares dominates the ratings, it is not surprising that Canseco and W. Clark
are #1 and #2.

(2) Postseason credit. For the first time, I am considering postseason performance, and it has
a significant effect in the case of Hershiser. To give postseason credit in a fair manner, I
rated Hershiser as if he had played his regular season number of innings at his average (regular
season plus postseason) performance. This leapfrogs him from 6th to 3th and gives him the top
spot of all pitchers.

(3) In the original Win Shares book, McReynolds has 31 WS. In the above SH WS, he has only 28.1.
I don't know where SH WS come from, but this is the first year that I have noticed a large overall
discrepancy between the two sets of numbers. If the 28.1 number is closer to correct, then
McReynolds doesn't belong in the top 13.

(1) Jose Canseco
(2) Will Clark
(3) Orel Hershiser
(4) Mark Gubicza
(5) Frank Viola
(6) Teddy Higuera
(7) Wade Boggs - most helped by WAR component
(8) Kirby Puckett
(9) Kirk Gibson
(10) Roger Clemens
(11) Barry Larkin
(12) Kevin McReynolds
(13) Robin Yount

(14) Mike Greenwell; (15) Bobby Bonilla; (16) Allan Anderson; (17) Dave Winfield
(18) Rickey Henderson; (19) Andy Van Slyke; (20) Daryl Strawberry
   19. bjhanke Posted: November 15, 2013 at 04:36 AM (#4600582)
My main memory of the 1988 postseason came after the Gibson homer. One of the commentators - and maybe not at the time, but a little later - said that the Dodger pitching coach (I think) had caught Eckersley patterning. He told Gibson that, against lefties, if he got to a particular count, Eck ALWAYS threw a back door slider. So Kirk got to that count, knew what was coming, and creamed it. Pretty good sabermetrics for a 1988 pitching coach there. - Brock Hanke
   20. toratoratora Posted: November 16, 2013 at 06:38 AM (#4601139)
Crazy thing too-the scout told Gibson that Eck would throw the backdoor on a 3-2 count*,but,IIRC, Gammons later did some research and discovered that Eck had only been in one 3-2 count all year (This was the season he walked five men total).


*Mel Didier, the scout's, exact words were "[W]hen I gave my report, the last thing I said was about Eckersley. The players were sitting down against the wall and I pointed to all the left-handed hitters, Mike Scioscia, Mike Davis, Kirk Gibson, all those guys.

"Podnuh, let me tell you this," I said. "If Eckersley gets you at 3-2 and there's a runner at second base or third base and it's the tying or winning run, Eckersley will throw you a backdoor slider on 3-2. Don't forget that because that's what he will do as sure as I'm standing here breathing." I hadn't seen him do it but twice, but I felt confident enough to tell them.
   21. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 16, 2013 at 12:22 PM (#4601177)
Crazy thing too-the scout told Gibson that Eck would throw the backdoor on a 3-2 count*,but,IIRC, Gammons later did some research and discovered that Eck had only been in one 3-2 count all year (This was the season he walked five men total).


Eckersley actually walked 11 batters (two intentionally) in 1988, not five. And he had 21 BFP when the hitters had a 3-2 count. The low-walk seasons came in 1989 (3) and 1990 (4, one intentional). This is why we have Baseball Reference :)

-- MWE

   22. puck Posted: November 16, 2013 at 04:51 PM (#4601262)
This is why we have Baseball Reference :)

It is also so I can look up Tim Belcher and see he had his 8 shutouts in 1989 and not 1988. Though Belcher did have a nice rookie season in 1988. It always amazed me he had 8 shutouts in a year.
   23. lieiam Posted: November 16, 2013 at 06:47 PM (#4601294)
Here's my prelim.
My usual blending of 6 systems (WAR(P) and WS).
10% catcher bonus (irrelevant this year) and no postseason bonus.

My single favorite moment of being a baseball fan has got to be Gibson's homer.
I was shocked, amazed and thrilled.

1 Canseco, Jose 9517
2 Boggs, Wade 8931
3 Gibson, Kirk 8184
4 Viola, Frank 7837
5 Clark, Will 7837
6 Clemens, Roger 7757
7 Gubicza, Mark 7632
8 Puckett, Kirby 7533
9 Greenwell, Mike 7465
10 Van Slyke, Andy 7355
11 Larkin, Barry 7267
12 Higuera, Teddy 7134
13 Butler, Brett 7035

14 Strawberry, Darryl 7014
15 Henderson, Rickey 6943
16 Hershiser, Orel 6782
17 McGriff, Fred 6737
18 Henderson, Dave 6723
19 Bonds, Barry 6673
20 Yount, Robin 6535

Are ties frowned on? Viola and Clark should really be tied for 4th in my system.
   24. DL from MN Posted: November 17, 2013 at 12:20 AM (#4601407)
No ties
   25. DanG Posted: November 17, 2013 at 09:50 AM (#4601464)
1988 was the year closers stopped pitching 100 IP.

Rk             Player WAR ERASV    WPA  WHIP GF GS    IP Age  Tm Lg  G  W  L  ERA   BA OPS+
1       Mike Henneman 3.3  205 22  2.188 1.051 51  0  91.1  26 DET AL 65  9  6 1.87 .218   65
2          Doug Jones 3.2  181 37  4.833 1.020 46  0  83.1  31 CLE AL 51  3  4 2.27 .218   47
3          Mark Davis 3.1  171 28  2.170 1.139 52  0  98.1  27 SDP NL 62  5 10 2.01 .199   58
4         John Franco 3.0  230 39  3.620 1.012 61  0  86.0  27 CIN NL 70  6  6 1.57 .198   47
5         Randy Myers 2.8  188 26  4.278 0.912 44  0  68.0  25 NYM NL 55  7  3 1.72 .190   59
6          Steve Farr 2.8  161 20  0.680 1.258 49  1  82.2  31 KCR AL 62  5  4 2.50 .240   88
7        Jose Alvarez 2.5  123  3  1.794 1.378 23  0 102.1  32 ATL NL 60  5  6 2.99 .240   99
8         Greg Harris 2.5  152  1  0.306 1.234 19  1 107.0  32 PHI NL 66  4  6 2.36 .209   81
9        Bryan Harvey 2.5  182 17  2.464 1.039 38  0  76.0  25 CAL AL 50  7  5 2.13 .214   59
10    Michael Jackson 2.4  159  4 
-1.643 1.178 29  0  99.1  23 SEA AL 62  6  5 2.63 .209   73
11       Jeff Reardon 2.4  165 42  2.028 1.137 58  0  73.0  32 MIN AL 63  2  4 2.47 .245   78
12     Cecilio Guante 2.4  141 12 
-2.076 1.167 40  0  79.2  28 TOT AL 63  5  6 2.82 .226   92
13     Paul Mirabella 2.2  242  4  1.177 1.083 13  0  60.0  34 MIL AL 38  2  2 1.65 .204   56
14   Dennis Eckersley 2.2  163 45  3.162 0.867 53  0  72.2  33 OAK AL 60  4  2 2.35 .198   42
15        Juan Agosto 2.2  148  4  1.043 1.135 33  0  91.2  30 HOU NL 75 10  2 2.26 .226   84
16       Brian Holton 2.1  198  1  1.261 1.122 11  0  84.2  28 LAD NL 45  7  3 1.70 .228   73
17     Craig McMurtry 2.0  181  3 
-0.600 1.017 14  0  60.0  28 TEX AL 32  3  3 2.25 .180   58
18         Jay Howell 2.0  162 21  0.747 1.000 38  0  65.0  32 LAD NL 50  5  3 2.08 .188   48 
   26. Mr. C Posted: November 17, 2013 at 01:18 PM (#4601512)
NL All Star Team

C Benito Santiago - Not a strong position in 1987
1B Will Clark
2B Ryne Sandberg
3B Bobby Bonilla (where is Mike Schmidt?)
SS Barry Larkin
LF Kirk Gibson
CF Andy Van Slyke
RF Darryl Srawberry
SP: Orel Hershiser, David Cone, Greg Maddux, John Tudor
RP: Randy Myers

AL All Star team

C Ernie Whitt (best of a not great group)
1B Fred McGriff
2B Lou Whitaker
3B Wade Boggs
SS Cal Ripken
LF Mike Greenwell
CF Kirby Puckett
RF Jose Canseco
SP: Mark Gubicza, Roger Clemens, Frank Viols, Teddy Higuera
RP: Doug Jones

   27. Mr. C Posted: November 17, 2013 at 01:32 PM (#4601519)
1988 Preliminary Ballot

Batters: start with RA (using value added runs), adjust for park, position and defense (average of TZ and DRA) Convert adjusted RAA to wins. Add 60% of normal Runs above replacement to get WARR (wins above reduced replacement)

Pitchers: start with RA (using value added runs) adjust for quality of opposition, park, team defense and role (reliever or starter) Convert adjusted RAA to wins. Add 60% of normal runs above replacement to get WARR (wins above reduced replacement)

1. Wade Boggs 7.27 WARR
2. Jose Canseco 7.13 WARR
3. Mike Greenwell 7.10 WARR
4. Andy Van Slyke 6.90 WARR
5. Mark Gubicza 6.81 WARR
6. Roger Clemens 6.61 WARR
7. Frank Viola 6.58 WARR
8. Darryl Strawberry 6.45 WARR
9. Kirby Pickett 6.34 WARR
10. Teddy Higuera 6.22 WARR
11 Barry Larkin 6.22 WARR
12. Fred McGriff 6.12 WARR
13. Kirk Gibson 6.0 WARR

Rest of the top 20
14. Bobby Bonilla
15. Kal Daniels
16. Orel Hershiser Poor hitting numbers kept Hershiser off the ballot
17. Will Clark
18. David henderson
19. Ricky Henderson
20. Brett Butler
   28. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 17, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4601579)
*Mel Didier, the scout's, exact words were "[W]hen I gave my report, the last thing I said was about Eckersley. The players were sitting down against the wall and I pointed to all the left-handed hitters, Mike Scioscia, Mike Davis, Kirk Gibson, all those guys.

"Podnuh, let me tell you this," I said. "If Eckersley gets you at 3-2 and there's a runner at second base or third base and it's the tying or winning run, Eckersley will throw you a backdoor slider on 3-2. Don't forget that because that's what he will do as sure as I'm standing here breathing." I hadn't seen him do it but twice, but I felt confident enough to tell them.


A couple weeks ago I saw a piece with Didier (a recent interview) where he confirmed this. And I think Gibson confirmed it in the same piece as well. They brought Eckersley on to comment and he said, well, if he was doing it it was news to him.

The number I have in my head was that Didier said he had 6 examples of Eckersley doing this. But perhaps that was going back to earlier than just the 1988 season.
   29. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 17, 2013 at 04:59 PM (#4601580)

My single favorite moment of being a baseball fan has got to be Gibson's homer.
I was shocked, amazed and thrilled.


It's up there for me as well. And I'm not even a Dodgers fan. I can still hear Scully's "...and...she...is...GONE!" call.

   30. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: November 17, 2013 at 05:20 PM (#4601582)
Here's a fantastic oral history of Gibson's home run with many people involved.

Mel Didier says:

It was broken down more than that. I said that if Eck faces a left-handed batter only on a 3-2 pitch with the tying or winning run on second and/or third, I’ll bet that you are going to get a backdoor slider. I had seen Eck do this, not all the time, but in big games with great hitters in crucial situations. I’d seen the A’s play 25 or 30 times, and at the end of the season I followed them closely.


Eckersley says:

Somebody said that the Dodgers knew I threw a backdoor slider on 3-2. I don’t know if that’s true or not. I didn’t get to 3-2 that often, but if that’s what the guy told [Gibson], if that’s what he had on his mind, good for him.

The backdoor slider, what it does, is you don’t want it to break much. Therefore, the batter thinks it is going to break, but it doesn’t. It’s a pitch where batters think it is going to come more to them, and then stays outside, on the back door. They either swing over the top, swing through or get out front and hit a ground ball.

This was a terrible [backdoor] slider.


Read the whole article. It's great.
   31. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 17, 2013 at 09:48 PM (#4601646)
1988 was the year closers stopped pitching 100 IP.


And it really happened quickly, too - although innings had been trending downward since 1974, there were really abrupt changes in the 1985-1988 time frame.

-- MWE
   32. Chris Fluit Posted: November 20, 2013 at 02:04 AM (#4602846)
It's been a long time since Mike Schmidt wasn't a legitimate contender for the MMP ballot. He didn't warrant any attention in his first full season of 1973 thanks to a 92 OPS+ but he's been a regular ever since.

1974: 1st
1975: 13th
1976: 2nd (Joe Morgan)
1977: 2nd (Rod Carew)
1978: 21st
1979: 4th
1980: 2nd (George Brett)
1981: 1st
1982: 3rd
1983: 3rd
1984: 9th
1985: ---
1986: 5th
1987: 15th

Schmidt picked up MMP votes in 13 out of 14 seasons. His consistent excellence is even more eye-popping when you look at the NL only.

1974: 1st
1975: 6th
1976: 2nd (Joe Morgan)
1977: 1st
1978: 10th
1979: 1st
1980: 1st
1981: 1st
1982: 2nd (Gary Carter)
1983: 1st
1984: 5th
1985: ---
1986: 2nd (Mike Scott)
1987: 8th

Schmidt won 2 MMPs (1974 and 1981). However, he won 6 NL MMPs ('74, '77, '79-81 and '83) and he was the top NL position player a 7th season. 7 times in 14 seasons, Schmidt was the best position player in his league and in a 5 year stretch from '79 to '83 he won 4 MMPs while finishing 2nd once.

Just my long-winded way of saying: "He was good."
   33. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: November 20, 2013 at 08:34 PM (#4603426)
I often give Wade Boggs a hard time for "being Wade Boggs" but '88 was an interesting year for him: after hitting 24 HRs in '87 he drops to 5 in '88 but still has an excellent year. During the first half of the season the Sox struggled to contend and the Margo Adams scandal reached a boiling point and caused a lot of tension and acrimony in the team. MacNamara was the scapegoat and got canned but then the Sox got hot under new mgr Joe Morgan and beat out the Tigers and the jays for the AL East.
Regardless of the mess Boggs caused, he'll be in my top 5, he had an awesome season but clubhouse-wise he was kind of the anti-Kirk Gibson
   34. toratoratora Posted: November 20, 2013 at 10:19 PM (#4603539)
but then the Sox got hot under new mgr Joe Morgan

I had forgotten that was 1988.Hot is the word. Starting July 15,they won twelve straight, 19 out of 20 total and 25 straight at home.
Take out that 19-1 run and the Sox were 70-72 on the season.
   35. DL from MN Posted: November 21, 2013 at 10:21 PM (#4604253)
Postseason performances ALCS

Player Name G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS SB CS 
Jose Canseco 4 16 4 5 1 0 3 4 1 2 .313 .353 .938 1.290 1 1  
Dave Henderson 4 16 2 6 1 0 1 4 1 7 .375 .412 .625 1.037 0 0 

Wade Boggs 4 13 2 5 0 0 0 3 3 4 .385 .444 .385 .829 0 0 
Ellis Burks 4 17 2 4 1 0 0 1 0 3 .235 .235 .294 .529 0 0 
Mike Greenwell 4 14 2 3 1 0 1 3 3 0 .214 .353 .500 .853 0 0 

Pitcher Name G GS ERA W L SV CG IP H ER BB SO WHIP 
Roger Clemens 1 1 3.86 0 0 0 0 7.0 6 3 0 8 0.857 
   36. DL from MN Posted: November 21, 2013 at 10:24 PM (#4604255)
NLCS
Player Name G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS SB CS 
Kirk Gibson 7 26 2 4 0 0 2 6 3 6 .154 .233 .385 .618 2 0 

Darryl Strawberry 7 30 5 9 2 0 1 6 2 5 .300 .344 .467 .810 0 1 

Pitcher Name G GS ERA W L SV CG IP H ER BB SO WHIP 
Orel Hershiser 4 3 1.09 1 0 1 1 24.2 18 3 7 15 1.014 
John Tudor 1 1 7.20 0 0 0 0 5.0 8 4 1 1 1.800 

David Cone 3 2 4.50 1 1 0 1 12.0 10 6 5 9 1.250 

   37. DL from MN Posted: November 21, 2013 at 10:27 PM (#4604256)
World Series

Player Name G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS SB CS 
Kirk Gibson 1 1 1 1 0 0 1 2 0 0 1.000 1.000 4.000 5.000 0 0 

Jose Canseco 5 19 1 1 0 0 1 5 2 5 .053 .182 .211 .392 1 0 
Dave Henderson 5 20 1 6 2 0 0 1 2 7 .300 .364 .400 .764 0 0  

Pitcher Name G GS ERA W L SV CG IP H ER BB SO WHIP 
Orel Hershiser 2 2 1.00 2 0 0 2 18.0 7 2 6 17 0.722  
John Tudor  1 1 0.00 0 0 0 0 1.1 0 0 0 1 0.000 

   38. DL from MN Posted: November 21, 2013 at 10:40 PM (#4604267)
The 16% innings boost for Hershiser along with the high quality of the innings is going to move him to the top of my ballot. Boggs breaks the tie with Gibson and Canseco for the 2nd slot. Clemens slides ahead of Gubicza.
   39. DL from MN Posted: November 26, 2013 at 06:40 PM (#4606394)
1988 music I like

Sonic Youth - Daydream Nation
Run DMC - Tougher Than Leather
Skinny Puppy - VIVISectVI
Public Enemy - It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
REM - Green
Ministry - Land of Rape and Honey
NWA - Straight Outta Compton
Jane's Addiction - Nothing's Shocking
They Might Be Giants - Lincoln
Tom Waits - Big Time
Pixies - Surfer Rosa
Dinosaur Jr - Bug
U2 - Rattle and Hum
Smithereens - Green Thoughts
Butthole Surfers - Hairway to Steven
Front 242 - Front by Front
Joy Division - Substance (compilation)
Jungle Brothers - Straight out the Jungle
Living Colour - Vivid
Bad Religion - Suffer
Suicidal Tendencies - How Will I Laugh Tomorrow

stuff I still need to hear
Eric B and Rakim - Follow the Leader
   40. Moeball Posted: November 26, 2013 at 06:45 PM (#4606399)
1988 was the flip side of the 1987 coin - it was weird how in one season it went from hitter's paradise to wasteland so quickly. San Diego's T Gwynn set the NL record to correspond to Yaz' 1968 - Gwynn's .313 BA was the lowest ever to win an NL bat title. Tony was batting only .237 at the end of play on June 13 but then heated up the rest of the season. Actually, IIRC, he also set a record for largest margin overcome in a batting race as he was something like 70 or 80 points behind the leader at the midway point of the season but wound up winning the title.

The big stories of the season were Canseco's 40/40, Hershiser's shutout string and Kirk Gibson.

Accordingly, they will play prominently in my list (I give heavy postseason and year-ending credit this time because Hershiser just absolutely carried the Dodgers down the stretch to the ultimate finish line):

1) Hershiser
2) Canseco
3) Boggs
4) Strawberry
5) Gibson
6) Viola
7) Puckett
8) W. Clark
9) Greenwell
10)Higuera
11)Ozzie
12)B. Larkin
13)Rickey!
   41. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 05:29 PM (#4607290)
Here's the RPA hitter leaders for the NL in 1988, based on runs produced over the median:

Darryl Strawberry OF 26 New York 49.59
Will Clark 1B 24 San Francisco 45.81
Kevin McReynolds OF 28 New York 39.98
Brett Butler OF 31 San Francisco 35.62
Andy Van Slyke OF 27 Pittsburgh 33.89
Bobby Bonilla 3B 25 Pittsburgh 33.34
Barry Bonds OF 23 Pittsburgh 32.53
Kirk Gibson OF 31 Los Angeles 28.91
Kal Daniels OF 24 Cincinnati 26.12
Howard Johnson 3B 27 New York 26.01
Glenn Davis 1B 27 Houston 24.95
Andres Galarraga 1B 27 Montreal 24.37
Eric Davis OF 26 Cincinnati 22.29
Terry Puhl OF 31 Houston 16.63
Andre Dawson OF 33 Chicago 15.79
Kevin Mitchell 3B 26 San Francisco 15.26
Barry Larkin SS 24 Cincinnati 15.26
Lenny Dykstra OF 25 New York 14.81
Tony Gwynn OF 28 San Diego 14.31
Mookie Wilson OF 32 New York 13.62
Gregg Jefferies 3B 20 New York 11.66
John Kruk UT 27 San Diego 11.65
Dave Magadan CI 25 New York 11.54
Wally Backman 2B 28 New York 11.27
Randy Ready IF 28 San Diego 11.18
Keith Hernandez 1B 34 New York 11.11
Pedro Guerrero 3B 3B LA/STL 11.04
   42. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 05:32 PM (#4607292)
Here's the RPA pitcher leaders for the NL, based on run value over the median:

Top Pitcher W-L Age Team Runs
Danny Jackson 23-8 26 Cincinnati 27.49
Orel Hershiser 23-8 29 Los Angeles 26.23
Tim Belcher 12-6 26 Los Angeles 20.23
Pascual Perez 12-8 31 Montreal 20.21
Joe Magrane 5-9 23 St. Louis 18.09
Tim Leary 17-11 30 Los Angeles 16.85
Jose Rijo 13-8 23 Cincinnati 16.30
John Tudor 10-8 34 STL/LA 13.84
Bob Walk 12-10 31 Pittsburgh 12.41
John Franco 6-6 27 Cincinnati 12.09
Greg Maddux 18-8 22 Chicago 11.93
Bob Ojeda 10-13 30 New York 11.82
Mike Scott 14-8 33 Houston 11.74
Jay Howell 5-3 32 Los Angeles 11.44
Scott Terry 9-6 28 St. Louis 11.33
Jose DeLeon 13-10 27 St. Louis 11.31
Mark Davis 5-10 27 San Diego 11.10
Brian Holton 7-3 28 Los Angeles 10.91
Alejandro Pena 6-7 29 Los Angeles 10.90
Bryn Smith 12-10 32 Montreal 10.70
   43. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 05:34 PM (#4607293)
Here's the RPA hitter leaders for the AL in 1988, based on run value over the median:
Top Hitter Pos Age Team Runs
Jose Canseco OF 23 Oakland 54.05
Dave Winfield OF 36 New York 38.80
Wade Boggs 3B 30 Boston 37.75
Fred McGriff 1B 24 Toronto 36.01
Mike Greenwell OF 24 Boston 32.41
George Brett 1B 35 Kansas City 30.25
Jack Clark DH 32 New York 29.47
Mark McGwire 1B 24 Oakland 29.04
Dave Henderson OF 29 Oakland 28.23
Eddie Murray 1B 32 Baltimore 25.57
Rickey Henderson OF 29 New York 25.47
Brian Downing DH 37 California 24.95
Cal Ripken SS 27 Baltimore 24.58
Ken Phelps DH 33 Sea/NY 24.06
Kent Hrbek 1B 28 Minnesota 23.17
Danny Tartabull OF 25 Kansas City 22.92
Kirby Puckett OF 28 Minnesota 21.99
Alvin Davis 1B 27 Seattle 21.63
Alan Trammell SS 30 Detroit 21.54
Carlton Fisk C 40 Chicago 18.96
Paul Molitor 3B 31 Milwaukee 18.78
Don Mattingly 1B 27 New York 18.13
Rance Mulliniks DH 32 Toronto 18.10
Gary Gaetti 3B 29 Minnesota 17.22
Lou Whitaker 2B 31 Detroit 16.91
Robin Yount OF 32 Milwaukee 16.62
Dwight Evans OF 36 Boston 16.29
   44. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 05:36 PM (#4607294)
Here's the RPA pitcher leaders for the AL in 1988, based on run value over the median:

Top Pitcher W-L Age Team Runs
Roger Clemens 18-12 25 Boston 38.42
Teddy Higuera 16-9 30 Milwaukee 32.30
Mark Gubicza 20-8 25 Kansas City 28.35
Frank Viola 24-7 28 Minnesota 24.89
Greg Swindell 18-14 23 Cleveland 21.61
Mike Moore 9-15 28 Seattle 21.10
Scott Bankhead 7-9 24 Seattle 19.57
Allan Anderson 16-9 24 Minnesota 16.00
Doug Jones 3-4 31 Cleveland 15.75
Dave Stieb 16-8 30 Toronto 14.29
Bret Saberhagen 14-16 24 Kansas City 13.41
Chris Bosio 7-15 25 Milwaukee 12.46
Bob Stanley 6-4 33 Boston 11.30
Dennis Eckersley 4-2 33 Oakland 11.25
Dave Stewart 21-12 31 Oakland 10.91
Wes Gardner 8-6 27 Boston 10.46
Mark Langston 15-11 27 Seattle 10.42
Michael Jackson 6-5 23 Seattle 10.36
Dave LaPoint 10-11 28 Chicago 10.34
   45. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4607296)
Based on the above RPA list, the top 10 overall are:

Jose Canseco 54.05 runs
Darryl Strawberry 49.59 runs
Will Clark 45.81 runs
Kevin McReynolds 39.98 runs
Dave Winfield 38.80 runs
Roger Clemens 38.42 runs
Wade Boggs 37.75 runs
Fred McGriff 36.01 runs
Brett Butler 35.62 runs
Andy Van Slyke 33.89 runs
   46. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 06:55 PM (#4607310)
By the way:

My website (www.mikegimbel.com) is still under construction, but has all the RPA ratings of the top hitters and top pitchers in each league, for each season from 1900-2012. I should note that it also has my political and my physics subject areas, in addition to the baseball subject area. It also has a copy of my talk at the SABR Negro Leagues conference in 1998 in Atlantic City, in regards to the entry of Jackie Robinson into MLB in 1947. I think that you might find that an interesting read. I also have a video, on the website, of a talk That I gave a few years ago in regards to the steroids witch-hunt. If you are interested, please check out my website.
   47. caiman Posted: November 28, 2013 at 06:57 PM (#4607311)
One additional note on my website:

I am adding the RPA ratings for the complete rosters of each team. Thus far my website has those ratings for all NL teams from 1900 to 1928. More to follow, of course.
   48. Tubbs & Minnie Miñoso don't fear Sid Monge Posted: November 28, 2013 at 10:43 PM (#4607337)
No postseason bonus but a small bonus for playing on a Division contending team
1. Hershiser--excellent at the beginning & end of the season
2. Canseco*--the biggest monster* on the big, bad A's. 40*/40* was pretty impressive, lots of asteriks though
3. Gibson--whipped the underachieving Dodgers into shape
4. Greenwell
5. Boggs--the anti-Gibson, bringing acrimony to the team with the Margo Adams scandal. The drama helped lead to MacNamara's firing but the Sox got hot under new mgr Joe Morgan and took the AL East
6. Puckett
7. Viola
8. Brett
9. Gubicza
10. W Clark
11. Strawberry
12. McGriff--first great year of a guy who I feel is an overlooked HOF. Probably the least saber-friendly HOF candidate I support
13. Clemens

Honorable mention:
Dave Henderson #14
Eck--wonderful story coming back from alcoholism, he had a great year that had a nightmare ending but didn't quit and stayed clean and helped lead Oakland to Championship, took a career that was practically over and made a HOF career out of it
   49. toratoratora Posted: November 29, 2013 at 02:03 AM (#4607367)
I'm not sure how many extra points I'd give Hershiser for the pennant race (Now the postseason is a different deal).The Dodgers won the race by a lot more than I'd remembered...

(Lets see if I can figure out how this works)

1988 NL West Race graph
   50. lieiam Posted: November 29, 2013 at 12:29 PM (#4607432)
My (current) top 10 albums of 1988:
1- For Against- December
2- The Fall- The Frenz Experiment
3- The Wipers- The Circle
4- The Go-Betweens- 16 Lovers Lane
5- The Chills- Brave Words
6- Pixies- Surfer Rosa
7- The House Of Love- The House Of Love
8- The Woodentops- Woodenfoot Cops On The Highway
9- Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians- Globe Of Frogs
10-Public Enemy- It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back
   51. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 29, 2013 at 12:31 PM (#4607434)
I've heard of three of those artists. I was ten in 1988.
   52. jyjjy Posted: November 29, 2013 at 03:58 PM (#4607528)
MMA of '88 is Daydream Nation by any reasonable metric.
   53. smileyy Posted: November 29, 2013 at 04:33 PM (#4607540)
I remember being really upset that Danny Jackson's Really Really Good Year was upstaged by Orel Hershiser's Amazing Record Setting Year.
   54. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 03, 2013 at 12:42 PM (#4609513)
I'm swamped at work, but I notice that there are only 8 ballots submitted as I type this, so I'll do a quick prelim here and try to post a final ballot tomorrow (Wed) morning.

Same system as always for me, see past Ballot Discussion threads for details. Here's what my system spits out, I'm trusting the system for this one.

1. Jose Canseco
2. Orel Hershiser
3. Darryl Strawberry
4. Mike Greenwell
5. Roger Clemens
6. Andy Van Slyke
7. Wade Boggs
8. Kirby Puckett
9. Will Clark
10. Alan Trammell
11. Dave Henderson (well, there's a surprise)
12. Kevin McReynolds
13. Ozzie Smith

Last man off the ballot this year becomes Barry Bonds.

Please let me know if I seem to have overlooked somebody or if any of my results make you shake your head.
   55. DL from MN Posted: December 03, 2013 at 01:07 PM (#4609547)
Kiko - no Frank Viola is interesting but he's not far off ballot. Clicked through and his pWIN% and eWIN% are higher than Hershiser.
   56. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 03, 2013 at 01:15 PM (#4609553)
Kiko - no Frank Viola is interesting but he's not far off ballot. Clicked through and his pWIN% and eWIN% are higher than Hershiser.


I'm sure Hershiser is gaining on Viola for his postseason, but I'll take a look and see if Viola deserves a down-ballot slot, possibly over either Henderson or McReynolds.
   57. Chris Fluit Posted: December 05, 2013 at 12:32 PM (#4611130)
Others have commented on the top teams but my strongest recollection from 1988 is about the team at the bottom. I was 13 years old when the 1988 season started and a few months shy of my 8th grade graduation. I was also a huge Orioles fan. I had an Orioles cap that I wore all the time and an Orioles T-shirt that I wore at least once a week. I remember that I wore my cap on Opening Day, which the Orioles lost. I wore it again the next day, when they also lost. I kept wearing it, and they kept losing. My teacher teased me about supporting a losing team. "When are you going to leave that hat at home? Don't you know your team is no good?"- something to that effect. I replied, "Anybody can support a team when they're good. The test of a true fan is to support a team when they're not doing well.*" My teacher was actually impressed. "You keep wearing your hat," he replied. "I won't tease you about it anymore." I wore that hat for 25 straight days as the Orioles lost 21 straight games to start the season. Yet that season, even more than their 1983 World Series or their late '90s playoff teams, cemented my status as an Orioles fan for life. I have a disproportionate love for the players on that team- Joe Orsulak, Billy Ripken, Mickey Tettleton- as well as the promising youngsters who showed up as reinforcements during the course of the season- Brady Anderson, Pete Harnisch, Bob Milacki, Gregg Olson, Curt Schilling.




*I guess it's no surprise that I eventually married a Cubs fan.

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