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Sunday, May 06, 2007

Nolan Ryan

Eligible in 1999.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: May 06, 2007 at 05:56 PM | 151 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. sunnyday2 Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:03 PM (#2358660)
What thread was it we were just talking about the bullshit that passes for history? To wit: SI has a thing on its Web site right now, the 15 most intimidating pitchers of ALL-#######-TIME! Let's see, there's Walter Johnson at #14, sandwiched between Sudden Sam McDowell and Bob Feller. One guy before WWII. And other than Feller, Early Wynn and Sal Maglie pitched before 1950, but of course all of them also pitched after 1950. So what passes for ALL-#######-TIME over at SI is All-Since-Our-Magazine-Started-Plus-Some-Guy-That-We-Keep-Hearing-About-And-Though-We-Better-Put-on-the-List. That would be the Big Train.

Anyway:

15. Sam McDowell--reputed to throw hard
14. Walter Johnson--reputed to throw hard
13. Bob Feller--threw hard
12. Sal Maglie--The Barber
11. Pedro Martinez--The Butcher, knocked down Don Zimmer
10. JR Richard--threw hard
9. Goose Gossage--threw hard
8. Sandy Koufax--threw hard
7. Juan Marichal--hit Johnny Roseboro over the head with a bat
6. Randy Johnson--just ask John Kruk
5. Nolan Ryan--number 5? buncha revisionists!
4. Roger Clemens--threw hard, threw inside, threw bat shards
3. Early Wynn--threw inside
2. Don Drysdale--threw inside
1. You know who...










Bob Gibson--threw inside.

But seriously. Early Wynn? C'mon. Are major league batters really intimidated of getting hit by a pitch? Or maybe by a guy they can't hit? And were batters before about 1939 really not intimidated except by the Big Train? Whata buncha crap.
   102. KJOK Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:03 PM (#2358661)
Whether any given pitcher in the first case is more valuable than any given pitcher in the second case depends on the particulars, but the the general proposition is mathematically indisputable. Hell, there were many 19th century pitchers who pitched in nearly every game. Some of them essentially were one man pitching staffs, and some of them like Al Spalding pitched their teams to pennants. I doubt if Pedro or Koufax or even Cy Young were ever quite that valuable to their teams.


Andy, I'm afraid you really missing something important here. It certainly IS mathematically disputable! While offense and defense may both be 50% of total value overall, the split of defense between pitching and FIELDING has changed over time. Spalding may have pitched every game for his team, but that doesn't make him 100% responsible for the 50% of his team's run prevention - most of that responsibility went to the fielders.

Even between the 1960's and the 2000's, the split of run prevention between the pitcher and fielders has changed, so it's not NECESSARILY true that the 1960's pitchers who averaged 7 plus innings a start, and started every 4th, are more valuable than a modern pitcher who averages 6 plus innings and starts every 5th day.
   103. yest Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:04 PM (#2358662)
I meant talent as opossed to player
   104. yest Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:11 PM (#2358671)
no Carl Mays

C'mon. Are major league batters really intimidated of getting hit by a pitch?
why else do they were armor
   105. sunnyday2 Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:11 PM (#2358674)
Well, 7 innings every 4th day = 50% more innings than 6 innings every 5th day--i.e. about 3 to 2. Did the pitching/fielding split really change 50% since 1960? Since 1860 maybe. OK kidding, since 1893 maybe.
   106. Jose Canusee Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:16 PM (#2358677)
Not having a good comparison, would Jackie Robinson qualify for the "non-IC HOF that people think is IC" instead of Frisch, who probably didn't get any votes on any modern All-time teams? Of course he lost early years to WWII and color, but would he hang with Morgan and Hornsby?
   107. Cblau Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:49 PM (#2358704)
Ryan's W-L record in road games:
135-156.

Wow!

Road ERA+ 96. His teams were smart enough to use him more at home than away.
   108. DavidFoss Posted: May 08, 2007 at 09:58 PM (#2358714)
But nobody takes college ball seriously anymore, for purposes of all-time hoops teams or halls of fame or whatever.

I believe the National Basketball HOF includes college play... which explains Bill Walton's presence. Mavarich was an amazing college player, but I was surprised at how ho-hum his NBA numbers were. I most all of the superlatives about him usually refer to his college days.

So, if the basketball HOF includes college play, I wonder if they'll induct Christian Laettner one day. :-)
   109. BDC Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:04 PM (#2358722)
The Basketball HOF in Springfield includes women and international players as well as male US collegians and pros. A very nice model for a Hall, actually -- it stresses the inclusive, international emphasis that the sport has always adopted, rather than the kind of American exceptionalism that prevails at Cooperstown. (I love Cooperstown too, don't get me wrong -- I was just delighted by Springfield.)
   110. DL from MN Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:08 PM (#2358724)
Postseason pitching:
ERA W-L SV CG SHO IP H ER BB SO
3.07 2-2 1 1 0 58.7 39 20 14 63
   111. sunnyday2 Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:17 PM (#2358732)
'Course Walton played 30 years ago. Is Ralph Sampson in? Laettner, of course, is not. I don't think you can get there (to Springfield) based on college anymore. Of course, that's partly because the good players play there 1 or 2 years or not at all. But even then, yes, Laettner will be a good test.

My problem with Springfield is that it is rapidly becoming the Basketball Coaches HoF. A typically class today consists of about 6 coaches and 2 players. An American male, an international player and a woman player--2 out of 3 each time around. I have no problem with the internationalism but I have a problem with the coachism.

>no Carl Mays

My point exactly.

>why else do they were armor

Touche.
   112. yest Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:28 PM (#2358745)
My problem with Springfield is that it is rapidly becoming the Basketball Coaches HoF. A typically class today consists of about 6 coaches and 2 players. An American male, an international player and a woman player--2 out of 3 each time around. I have no problem with the internationalism but I have a problem with the coachism.


A slight change

My problem with Springfield is that it is rapidly becoming the Basketball <u>Collage</u> Coaches HoF. A typically class today consists of about 6 coaches and 2 players. An American male, an international player and a woman player--2 out of 3 each time around. I have no problem with the internationalism but I have a problem with the <u>Collage</u> coachism.
   113. yest Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:36 PM (#2358757)
The Basketball HOF in Springfield includes women and international players as well as male US collegians and pros. A very nice model for a Hall, actually -- it stresses the inclusive, international emphasis that the sport has always adopted, rather than the kind of American exceptionalism that prevails at Cooperstown. (I love Cooperstown too, don't get me wrong -- I was just delighted by Springfield.)

slight correction

The Basketball HOF in Springfield includes women and international players as well as male US collegians and pros <u>and all horribly</u>. A very nice model for a Hall, actually -- it stresses the inclusive of all <u>except pros who didn't play under a coach named RED</u>, international emphasis that the sport has always adopted, rather than the kind of American exceptionalism that prevails at Cooperstown. (I love Cooperstown too, don't get me wrong -- I was just delighted by Springfield.)
   114. KJOK Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:43 PM (#2358769)
Well, 7 innings every 4th day = 50% more innings than 6 innings every 5th day--i.e. about 3 to 2. Did the pitching/fielding split really change 50% since 1960?

Obviously not - some of that 'value' is now siphoned off by relief pitchers, instead of by fielders.
   115. sunnyday2 Posted: May 08, 2007 at 10:52 PM (#2358785)
>except pros who didn't play under a coach named RED

A slight overstatement, of course. The problem is they're just not picking players anymore regardless of what coach they played for.
   116. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: May 09, 2007 at 12:53 AM (#2358908)
A piece of lore or reality, I don't know, that I remember about Lynn Nolan Ryan. supposedly at an All-Star Game one year, he gave Randy Johnson the tip to land on the ball of his foot rather than his heel, and that tip single-handedly reduced Johnson's wildness and helped him become RANDY JOHNSON.

True or sort-of true? I don't know, does anyone else?
   117. Howie Menckel Posted: May 09, 2007 at 01:40 AM (#2358950)
Ryan's no-hitters and Ks were a delight, but no bonus pts here.
Otherwise, it's double-counting.

I mean, a 3-0 complete-game win is great. But whether you gave up 0 hits or 6 - who cares?

I've said it before - I LOVE K-rate as a predictive quality, but we're looking backwards and not forward.
All I care about is what Ryan actually accomplished.
   118. DavidFoss Posted: May 09, 2007 at 02:36 AM (#2359004)
True or sort-of true? I don't know, does anyone else?

Its on wikipedia! (with a citation, too. :-))
   119. Paul Wendt Posted: May 10, 2007 at 08:39 PM (#2360261)
KJOK #102 with reply by sunnyday2:
Even between the 1960's and the 2000's, the split of run prevention between the pitcher and fielders has changed, so it's not NECESSARILY true that the 1960's pitchers who averaged 7 plus innings a start, and started every 4th, are more valuable than a modern pitcher who averages 6 plus innings and starts every 5th day.

105. sunnyday2 Posted: May 08, 2007 at 05:11 PM (#2358674)
Well, 7 innings every 4th day = 50% more innings than 6 innings every 5th day--i.e. about 3 to 2. Did the pitching/fielding split really change 50% since 1960? Since 1860 maybe. OK kidding, since 1893 maybe.


KJ's general point is crucial and his specific point is clearly intended to illustrate the general one for Andy.

By the way, that 50% change in pitching/fielding split means, for example, a shift from 50-50 to 60-40. The "plus" in "7 plus" and "6 plus" makes the calculation approximate (as does any change in the number of innings played per game). Ignoring the latter (no change in the number of innings per game), and using the convention '.1' for 1/3 inning, a change from 7.1 in 4 days to 6.1 in 5 days corresponds to a multiplicative factor 1.45 or 0.69; for example, a shift from 50-50 to 59-41. I change in pitching/fielding split has been much greater than that since 1893, not to mention 1860!
   120. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: May 10, 2007 at 08:57 PM (#2360282)
So let's just take a quick-n-dirty look at pitching/fielding 1966 vs. 2000. If I catch the drift of what Paul, KJ, and Sunny are getting at, then....

Koufax and his NL twirling mates struck out 9312 batters in 14548 innings. So 43644 outs, so 21% of all outs by strikeout. Pedro's mates Ked 14033 men in 20136 innings, so 60408 outs or 23% of all outs by strikeout.

Let's say the pitching/fielding split was 67/33 pitching fielding for Koufax. For Pedro, it would be 10% higher (23/21), so 74/26.

That's got to be wrong.

Anyway, continuing blithely along, if that's the case, then
40 starts at 7 innings = 280 innings * .67 = 188 innings worth of "creditable outs"
32 starts at 6 innings = 192 innings * .74 = 142 innings worth of "creditable outs"

Of course, it's likely that better starters would make more starts nowadays, so adjust the starts and innings upward at will. Also, this makes no account for anything but Ks, whereas pitchers and fielders have many other influences on balls in play and their eventual outcomes. Well, and I probably screwed up the part above this...but even so, if I'm right in my procedure, then the Pedro pitcher would have to have 97% credit for outs to keep up with the Koufax pitcher.
   121. Paul Wendt Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:04 PM (#2360289)
Jim Brown : prime
as
Sandy Koufax : peak

They retired at the top of their personal games and they were at the top of their sports. But Brown enjoyed more years at the top in the NFL and his college football prelude was closer to NFL quality than any Koufax prelude.

--
Yes, Marc, I think David Thompson belongs in the Top 15.
That is, if history begins when you arrived, just after Jerry West and the Big O.

David Thompson is in my top ten easily, but I span less than 20 years, roughly Alcindor to Aguirre.

Pete Maravich put up some great great games in the NBA. When I was in Sarasota FL, the New Orleans Jazz of Pistol Pete and Len Truck were the home team decreed by CBS(?); yes, Atlanta was closer, but not close enough to matter, and not an interesting team, either. Almost weekly, it seemed, we were treated to one national game and one Jazz game. For one season, at least, those two carried the team more times than I can count on the fingers of one hand. (I can't say "more often than not".)

Springfield? Don't get me started. But it started as a museum honoring both the history of the sport and the contribution of Springfield College and that means the developers, promoters, and teachers before players. It seems to me that something like six of the 12 stained glass windows(?) at the old site featured not only "coaches" (ie contributors) but Springfield College contributors --Naismith, his students, and the next generation.

The school's business was education education, especially physical education education.


--
And Johnson, Alex & Matty wouldn’t have been able to pace themselves today the way they did in 1912. They may have been just as great in 2007 as they were then, but to be that they’d have to develop different philosophies of pitching, and to a much greater extent than Koufax or Gibson.

That is equally true of Pedro and whoever, Chris Carpenter. They might have been just as great in 1907 as they are now but to be that they would need to adopt different "philosophies of pitching" (training methods, between-game routines, travel skills, as well as pitching styles), and they would need to adapt more than Koufax or Gibson would need to adapt.
   122. AROM Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:05 PM (#2360290)
The pitcher/fielder split should be pitcher specific.

Even if the average has shifted towards pitching, Sandy Koufax should get more of the pitching credit than say, Chien-Ming Wang does today.
   123. BillP Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:31 PM (#2360307)
I'm getting to this discussion very late, and I'm new to this board so I'm sure I've missed something, but I have to ask. How is Ernie Lombardi overrated (and by whom)? He was a very good hitter and seems to have had a pretty good arm, and not all that many fans actually know who he is (or they didn't until Mauer made him no longer the last catcher to win a batting title). My vote would go to Ivan Rodriguez...
   124. sunnyday2 Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:37 PM (#2360310)
Ernie Lombardi is over-rated by whoever put him in the HoF. One of the worst defensive catchers ever to rack up significant innings and a pretty one-dimensional hitter. Not much power, horrible baserunner.

If I-Rod ever gets into Cooperstown, then we can talk about how he was better than Schnozz. But for now forget the "over" part. Schnozz wins on the "rated" part. He's in Cooperstown.
   125. Paul Wendt Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:42 PM (#2360317)
Ah, BillP. You are misled by the unlikely coincidence that our Nolan Ryan, Frank Tanana, Carlton Fisk, Dale Murphy, and Robin Yount threads include material that has nothing to do with Ryan, Tanana, Fisk, Murphy, and Yount.

Almost every sureshot or longshot candidate for the last 75 years or so enjoys his own thread, or suffers sharing one that includes his name in the title. Go to Important Links, then 20th Century Players [means major league, not Negro, Cuba, or minor league], or something like that . . .
   126. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:44 PM (#2360319)
Jim Brown : prime
as
Sandy Koufax : peak

They retired at the top of their personal games and they were at the top of their sports. But Brown enjoyed more years at the top in the NFL and his college football prelude was closer to NFL quality than any Koufax prelude.


This is weirdly theoretical, and I don't actually known much of anything about Jim Brown, but I want to look at Paul's assessment for a second because his definition of prime is at odds with my own. Let's make a different comparison:

Dick Allen: prime
as
Hughie Jennings: peak

Dick Allen's five-year peak is, itself, tremendous. It's within range of Jennings's. But Jennings's prime (say, 10 years) is not within the range of Allen's. Allen is more accurately thought of being a candidate whose performance was strong enough to transcend those kinds of labels. Who might be a more accurate point of comparison? Who would have a prime that while as peaky as Jennings would be as impressive as a prime? Billy Williams? Sam Crawford? Goose Goslin? Or are the peaks too high?

Point is that even with my limited knowledge of football, I know that Jim Brown doesn't really fit the prime tag. He was great, so great he could set the rushing record in 12 years and still quit on top. To me a prime guy is one whose peak is only relatively high, but whose ability to maintain that high output for a pretty long time is his distinguishing characteristic. Brown is just great, transcendentally so if I understand his place in football lore. So let me rejig Paul's analogy with a football player from the ten years I followed the NFL (1982-1992):

Sandy Koufax: peak
as
Herschel Walker: prime

Maybe Theisman? Maybe Harry Carson? Or how about Jack Hamm?

I might not know quite enough to know if these guys are apt historical analogies or not. But they came to mind. Please feel free to correct me. In general, I just thought it was interesting to dive into differing ideas of what peak and prime mean. So let me end with something blatantly obvious but interesting to try to put down on "paper."

Peak Candidate: A player whose value is clustered in a very small number of seasons, but whose case rests on the historic height of those seasons and/or the dominance they represent over his league.

Prime Candidate: A player whose value is spread among a larger number of seasons, but whose case rests on the fact that his peak, while somewhat lower than the peak candidate, is still quite high by most standards AND he maintained that level of performance for a much longer period.

Career Candidate: A player whose value is spread among the largest realistically viable number of seasons. His case rests on the fact that although his peak is not historically noticeable, his ability to maintain that level of play for a very long is almost unbelievable and distiguishes him from others with similarly long careers but dwindling effectiveness.

No-brainer/obvious/transcendent Candidate: A player for whom the height of his peak and length of time he maintained it make the use of labeling and categorization mostly superflouous. Further whose qualifications are strong enough to render more than surface-level analysis unnecessary for determining his place in an institution recogniznig greatness.

OK, there, just thought I'd try putting it down to see if it sticks.
   127. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: May 10, 2007 at 09:45 PM (#2360320)
And Johnson, Alex & Matty wouldn’t have been able to pace themselves today the way they did in 1912. They may have been just as great in 2007 as they were then, but to be that they’d have to develop different philosophies of pitching, and to a much greater extent than Koufax or Gibson.

That is equally true of Pedro and whoever, Chris Carpenter. They might have been just as great in 1907 as they are now but to be that they would need to adopt different "philosophies of pitching" (training methods, between-game routines, travel skills, as well as pitching styles), and they would need to adapt more than Koufax or Gibson would need to adapt.


Absolutely correct, which is yet another example of why it's impossible to say with any real precision how one generation's pitchers compare to another's.

But WRT how Pedro and his pals might have fared in 1907 or 1967, I guarantee you one thing: They would have drooled over the size of those strike zones.
   128. DCW3 Posted: May 10, 2007 at 10:07 PM (#2360338)
Not much power, horrible baserunner.

He was in the league's top ten in home runs five times, and in the top ten in SLG eight times. That's "not much power"? There are a lot of reasons not to like Lombardi, but I don't think lack of power is one of them.
   129. OCF Posted: May 10, 2007 at 10:14 PM (#2360345)
There's a side tweak to one of Eric Chalek's categories: the "discontinuous prime" candidate. One who shares the general characteristicss of prime candidates, but whose good years - the ones on which the case is based - do not run consecutively but are interspersed with one or more years of lower quality. Jimmy Wynn was a discontinuous prime candidate. Luis Tiant is a discontinuous prime candidate. Mark McGwire, when he comes around, will be a discontinuous prime candidate.
   130. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: May 10, 2007 at 10:31 PM (#2360353)
If you look at the percentage of first ballot votes for the HOF, one inductee's name stands out as almost the definition of overrated: By that standard, number 8 of the Red Sox has got to be the most overrated player ever.
   131. AROM Posted: May 10, 2007 at 10:50 PM (#2360364)
But WRT how Pedro and his pals might have fared in 1907 or 1967, I guarantee you one thing: They would have drooled over the size of those strike zones.

You mean they might have called something 1 inch over the belt a strike?
   132. Paul Wendt Posted: May 10, 2007 at 10:56 PM (#2360368)
> they would need to adapt more than Koufax or Gibson would need to adapt.

Absolutely correct, which is yet another example of why it's impossible to say with any real precision how one generation's pitchers compare to another's.

But WRT how Pedro and his pals might have fared in 1907 or 1967, I guarantee you one thing: They would have drooled over the size of those strike zones.


Yeah, like we are both saying, in 1907 Pedro & co. would need to adapt a lot more than Koufax and Gibson would need to adapt.


Eric Chalek
> Jim Brown : prime
> as
> Sandy Koufax : peak
>
> They retired at the top of their personal games and they were at the top of their sports.
> But Brown enjoyed more years at the top in the NFL and his college football prelude was
> closer to NFL quality than any Koufax prelude.

This is weirdly theoretical, and I don't actually known much of anything about Jim Brown, but I want to look at Paul's assessment for a second because his definition of prime is at odds with my own.


Not really. Brown is no paradigm case for prime; there is no drawing of him beside 'prime' in the American Heritage Dictionary. Koufax is a paradigm case for peak. So I should not have used the colon operator of standardized testing fame. That was my hasty response to someone's else suggestion (in my mind) that Brown and Koufax are kin for their peaks. For a pro football running back, 12 years is a career, although some play longer. Whereas for Bob Johnson, 12 years is only a prime and he suffers for his short career.

Who is a good paradigm prime candidate for the HOM? --not same as who enjoyed a good prime. Sam Crawford? No, too good a player for too long? Elmer Flick or Earl Averill? No, the paradigm case should be someone with a significantly longer than prime mlb career but whose candidacy rests on prime alone. Ross Barnes? No, I think not; his is a better version of Elmer Flick's career pattern. Dale Murphy? Yes, if you follow Win Shares, else his prime may not be good enough. Jim Palmer? Probably too much outside his big decade '69-78.
   133. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:12 PM (#2360378)
My vote would go to Ivan Rodriguez...


Peak? I would say he's somewhat overrated, but he may become the greatest ML career catcher ever when he retires.
   134. Paul Wendt Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:16 PM (#2360383)
prime prime

expanding my last article
Elmer Flick or Earl Averill? No, the paradigm case should be someone with a significantly longer than prime mlb career but whose candidacy rests on prime alone.

Flick is the main player, later supported by Averill(*), who inspired me to argue for the prime category against the peak/career dichotomy, about five years ago in the "What If?" hall of fame project --a modest effort led by Marc. We elected a small hall, per Marc's preferences, 138 players. My long campaign elected Flick as number 138 and last, at a time when he was coincidentally ranked as MLB player #138 in my edition of Total Baseball. But along the lines Eric Chalek suggests here, which are fine lines in my opinion, Flick is not so much a prime candidate as someone with a great career of prime length, cut short. Same for Averill. Murphy, on the other hand, has several genuine mlb seasons outside his prime that add little or nothing to his candidacy, as Koufax has several genuine mlb seasons outside his peak. That is, the paradigm prime candidate should have career on the order twice as long as that prime.

(*) As I recall, there was one other example for me, Goose Gossage.

peak : Eck Eckersley
prime : Goose Gossage
career : Don McMahon? John Franco?
JimBrown : Mariano Rivera

That is ignoring Eck's first career as a starting pitcher. With their low-IP seasons, relief pitchers look too inconsistent by ERA+ to be career candidates, but Don McMahon's career may be too much up and down for even a relief pitcher. How about John Franco?
   135. Paul Wendt Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:20 PM (#2360390)
With their low-IP seasons, relief pitchers look too inconsistent by ERA+ to be career candidates,

relief pitchers look too inconsistent by ERA+ to provide a good paradigm case of the career candidate for the HOM, HOF, or other baseball hall honorable.
Of course a relief pitcher can be a career candidate. John Franco will be one, I suppose.
   136. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:23 PM (#2360393)
Is Joe Jackson the ultimate prime player?
   137. yest Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:28 PM (#2360396)
I would have made it
JimBrown = Bob Feller - WWII
   138. sunnyday2 Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:30 PM (#2360397)
Well, thinking of SS:

Peak--Hughie Jennings is pretty much THE paradigm

Peak/Prime--Ernie Banks, Robin Yount, Arky Vaughan

Prime--I'd say Ernie Banks, I mean, yes, a high peak but not as high as Jennings, the prime was mostly peak, and a long career but most of it not HoM worthy; Boudreau is an even better example however so go with him

Prime/Career--Appling, Cronin, Vaughan, actually this is an easy enough category to fill

Career--Maranville

Peak/Prime/Career--Wagner?
   139. sunnyday2 Posted: May 10, 2007 at 11:32 PM (#2360398)
And maybe the discontinous case is the Prime/Career case with "no" prime...and maybe that's Yount, maybe not. It would be a guy with an injury, probably. Or somebody who fought in the war but I can't think of an example whose peak was high enough. Not Rizzuto, not Pesky, not Travis really (one year is not a peak).
   140. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: May 11, 2007 at 12:17 AM (#2360425)
I mean, a 3-0 complete-game win is great. But whether you gave up 0 hits or 6 - who cares?

The fans?
   141. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: May 11, 2007 at 01:01 AM (#2360464)
I mean, a 3-0 complete-game win is great. But whether you gave up 0 hits or 6 - who cares?

The fans?


That great new baseball-reference page lets you look up the assigned game score for every pitcher's appearance going back to 1957. It's kind of a crude measuring device but it's still a lot of fun to see how the numbers compare to your preconceptions.
   142. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: May 11, 2007 at 01:25 AM (#2360478)
The pitcher/fielder split should be pitcher specific.

Even if the average has shifted towards pitching, Sandy Koufax should get more of the pitching credit than say, Chien-Ming Wang does today.


In 1966, Koufax Ked 317 batters in 323 innings. Not bad. So of all the 969 outs he recorded, he was responsible for 33% of them by himself.

In 2000, Pedro had 284 punchatos in 217 innings. Not bad at all. Of the 651 outs recorded in his games, Pedro is solely responsible for 44% of them.

That's pretty interesting by itself.
   143. sunnyday2 Posted: May 11, 2007 at 01:54 AM (#2360494)
IOW Koufax K'd half as many hitters as Pedro got out altogether. And you wonder why WS likes Koufax. Shouldn't every measure?
   144. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: May 11, 2007 at 02:15 AM (#2360513)
11. Pedro Martinez--The Butcher, knocked down Don Zimmer

That lunkhead had it coming.
   145. Paul Wendt Posted: May 14, 2007 at 02:26 PM (#2363381)
So he hopes to make a comeback. Wait and see what he can do, I say.
Brett, Yount, and Fisk.
   146. Daryn Posted: May 14, 2007 at 02:34 PM (#2363386)
Is Joe Jackson the ultimate prime player?

That's who I think of -- Albert Belle too.
   147. Paul Wendt Posted: May 14, 2007 at 02:49 PM (#2363394)
Neither Jackson nor Belle played significantly in the majors outside his prime. So they are in the class with Flick and Averill.
Ted Simmons is a good illustration of the prime candidate. His weakness as an illustration, if any, is that ten years as fulltime catcher is a long time. Eight years at catcher or ten years at CF (Ted Murphy and Dale Simmons) might be a better illustration.
   148. DavidFoss Posted: May 14, 2007 at 03:27 PM (#2363422)
Is Joe Jackson the ultimate prime player?

I dunno. When I think of "ultimate prime player", by process of elimination I think of someone who didn't really have a dominant peak or a very long career. Jackson's career 170 OPS+ almost qualifies as being too dominant. He's a great peak candidate.

Who comes to my mind as having neither a dominant peak nor long career? Someone with a mid-length career that was very consistent. Keith Hernandez, Earl Averill, Bill Terry... probably more...
   149. TakeandRake Posted: May 18, 2007 at 09:14 PM (#2368521)
Ryan = Easy first ballot for any Hall...
   150. Juan V Posted: May 18, 2007 at 09:29 PM (#2368530)
Ryan = Easy first ballot for any Hall...


Except this one. Although that says more about the rules we've set up than about the quality of his career.
   151. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: May 18, 2007 at 10:12 PM (#2368563)
Except this one. Although that says more about the rules we've set up than about the quality of his career.


Exactly, Juan.
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