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

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Ranking Hall of Merit Players Not in the Hall of Fame: Group 3 (career started before 1943)

Group 3 is currently under the jurisdiction of the Veterans Committee. These players’ careers started before 1943

In alphabetical order (year of election in parenthesis):

Charlie Bennett (1921)
Pete Browning (2005)
Bob Caruthers (1930)
Cupid Childs (1988)
Bill Dahlen (1915)
Wes Ferrell (1964)
Jack Glasscock (1904)
Joe Gordon (1976)
George Gore (1898)
Heinie Groh (1938)
Stan Hack (1958)
Paul Hines (1898)
Charley Jones (2003)
Charlie Keller (1996)
Sherry Magee (1926)
Hardy Richardson (1905)
Jimmy Sheckard (1930)
Joe Start (1912)
Harry Stovey (1916)
Ezra Sutton (1908)
Deacon White (1898)

 

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: February 10, 2008 at 09:01 PM | 177 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: February 20, 2008 at 04:40 PM (#2695529)
Wow, in an 8-team league, the presence of ABC would *really* distort RCAP...I would *definitely* take the 1B numbers in the 1880's with a grain of salt. (This is precisely why I use worst regulars and not percentage of average for my replacement level calculations.)
   102. Chris Cobb Posted: February 20, 2008 at 05:31 PM (#2695579)
Yes, the volatility of RCAP is limits its meaning as a measure of merit.

A pertinent example is Jimmy Sheckard vs. Sherry Magee. Both left-fielders, their careers overlap considerably. Magee is the better hitter, 425 RCAA to Sheckard's 323. But by RCAP, Magee is much farther ahead, 337 to 135. Did LF suddenly change to a more glove-oriented position after 1905? I doubt it, but Sheckard happens to be competing with Burkett, Delahanty, Clarke, and Kelley early in his career.
   103. OCF Posted: February 20, 2008 at 06:19 PM (#2695632)
I myself have been scared off from the pre-1893 crowd due to my inability to find a run estimator for those league-seasons with a tolerable degree of accuracy.

One of the central problems is the extent to which the components of OPS fail to capture all of scoring. Here's a look at the problem - the team OBP, SLG, and R/G from a collection of 1880's teams, contrasted to the same for a collection of 1970's/1980's teams. Mostly these are unremarkable teams, although I did slip in one true oddity in the 1987 Cardinals.

Year Team L OBP  SLG  R/G
1886 NYG NL .307 .356 5.58
1883 BUF NL .311 .371 6.27
1883 LOU AA .279 .331 5.76
1888 CIN AA .310 .324 5.76
--------------------------
1972 HOU NL .325 .393 4.63
1974 MIL AL .307 .369 3.99
1987 STL NL .341 .378 4.93
1980 LAD NL .322 .388 4.07 


So the same OPS in the 1880's resulted in many more runs than it would have in later years. The biggest part of this is team defense, and is as such not controlled by the offensive team. And it's still true on a team level that run scoring does at least somewhat correlate with recorded batting events. But I'm less confident that that can be carried down to the level of individual players.

One recorded individual statistic that's not part of OPS is actual runs scored. Of course this is, as it always has been, terribly team-dependent. (i.e., not enough for us to enshrine Abner Dalrymple). But it might very well be some kind of indirect marker for a player's offensive value - largely baserunning value - that lies outside of OPS.

Of course, that was the core of my long-ago defense of Stovey. He scored lots and lots of runs. He scored lots of runs even on bad teams (see 1882 Worcester). You can't really say that about Browning.
   104. OCF Posted: February 20, 2008 at 06:21 PM (#2695635)
I myself have been scared off from the pre-1893 crowd due to my inability to find a run estimator for those league-seasons with a tolerable degree of accuracy.

One of the central problems is the extent to which the components of OPS fail to capture all of scoring. Here's a look at the problem - the team OBP, SLG, and R/G from a collection of 1880's teams, contrasted to the same for a collection of 1970's/1980's teams. Mostly these are unremarkable teams, although I did slip in one true oddity in the 1987 Cardinals.

Year Team L OBP  SLG  R/G
1886 NYG NL .307 .356 5.58
1883 BUF NL .311 .371 6.27
1883 LOU AA .279 .331 5.76
1888 CIN AA .310 .324 5.76
--------------------------
1972 HOU NL .325 .393 4.63
1974 MIL AL .307 .369 3.99
1987 STL NL .341 .378 4.93
1980 LAD NL .322 .388 4.07 


So the same OPS in the 1880's resulted in many more runs than it would have in later years. The biggest part of this is team defense, and is as such not controlled by the offensive team. And it's still true on a team level that run scoring does at least somewhat correlate with recorded batting events. But I'm less confident that that can be carried down to the level of individual players.

One recorded individual statistic that's not part of OPS is actual runs scored. Of course this is, as it always has been, terribly team-dependent. (i.e., not enough for us to enshrine Abner Dalrymple). But it might very well be some kind of indirect marker for a player's offensive value - largely baserunning value - that lies outside of OPS.

Of course, that was the core of my long-ago defense of Stovey. He scored lots and lots of runs. He scored lots of runs even on bad teams (see 1882 Worcester). You can't really say that about Browning.
   105. jimd Posted: February 20, 2008 at 09:03 PM (#2695833)
Putting the ball in play is extremely important. Making outs by Strikeouts (or foul pops/tips/bounds) deprives one of the chance of taking advantage of the numerous errors by fielders. In 1881 each team commits an average of 4 Errors per game. Put another way, score all of those as "hits" and everybody's average goes up over .100 points. (I know they're not all "hits"; some are throwing or extra-base errors.) Speed out of the box would be very useful.
   106. jimd Posted: February 20, 2008 at 09:05 PM (#2695834)
the presence of ABC would *really* distort RCAP

Very similar to the effect of Foxx, Gehrig, and Greenberg in the 1930's AL.
   107. jimd Posted: February 20, 2008 at 10:01 PM (#2695915)
(I know RCAP are not normalized and FRAA are, so they’re not perfectly commensurate measures, but since we are comparing players from the same period, I think this should lead to little distortion of their relative values),

First of all, very nice work Chris. It's a significant study on short notice. My comment here is just to point out a possible bias that for which some may want to compensate.

The run environment of these early seasons is considerably richer than the BP average of 4.5 per game. Normalizing the fielding runs but not the batting runs advantages those whose strength is hitting, disadvantaging the fielders.

The average of the 29 seasons 1876-92 (17 NL, 10 AA, 1 UA, 1PL) is 5.54. There is a good deal of variance though, stdev of .49 - outliers are: 1888 NL 4.54 and 1880 NL 4.69 on the low side, 1890 PL 6.88 and 1887 AA 6.58 on the high side. The other seasons range between 4.95 and 6.08. AA is 4% higher than the NL of the same 10 seasons. If the base run-estimator is reasonably accurate, then a discount of about 20% overall is called for on the batting runs, though it is also possible that the estimator is systematically low due to all the extra errors in the background. (Any way to cross-check the batting runs?)

(The PL is out-of-line with the other seasons: was the "Keefe ball" lively (relatively)? 1887 is also high, but that's the year of the 4-strike experiment. 1888 is much lower than the surrounding years - some other rule experiment? 1878-1881 is a relative low spot, 5.07 avg; this is Hines' peak so he'd be hurt most by an across-the-board 20% RCAP discount.)

No NA stats were used, which is good. Their run environments were extreme:
1871 10.47
1872 9.26
1873 8.99
1874 7.48
1875 6.14
but had declined to just "kinda high" by 1875.
   108. Paul Wendt Posted: February 20, 2008 at 11:29 PM (#2696023)
jimd
First of all, very nice work Chris. It's a significant study on short notice. My comment here is just to point out a possible bias that for which some may want to compensate.

DanR said much the same. Let me third the motion.

--
103. OCF Posted: February 20, 2008 at 12:19 PM (#2695632)
One of the central problems is the extent to which the components of OPS fail to capture all of scoring. Here's a look at the problem - the team OBP, SLG, and R/G from a collection of 1880's teams, contrasted to the same for a collection of 1970's/1980's teams. Mostly these are unremarkable teams, although I did slip in one true oddity in the 1987 Cardinals.

Year Team L OBP SLG R/G
1886 NYG NL .307 .356 5.58
1883 BUF NL .311 .371 6.27
1883 LOU AA .279 .331 5.76
1888 CIN AA .310 .324 5.76
--------------------------
1972 HOU NL .325 .393 4.63
1974 MIL AL .307 .369 3.99
1987 STL NL .341 .378 4.93
1980 LAD NL .322 .388 4.07


So the same OPS in the 1880's resulted in many more runs than it would have in later years. The biggest part of this is team defense, and is as such not controlled by the offensive team.


Yes, see "Ezra Sutton" #4 and think about that league. Boston wins pennant with OPS+ 79, ERA+ 101.

One recorded individual statistic that's not part of OPS is actual runs scored. Of course this is, as it always has been, terribly team-dependent. (i.e., not enough for us to enshrine Abner Dalrymple).

Or Hub Collins. I do make him the best second baseman in the major leagues 1890.
   109. Paul Wendt Posted: February 20, 2008 at 11:39 PM (#2696043)
91. sunnyday2 Posted: February 18, 2008 at 09:33 PM (#2694223)
Paul, there was a time in this project when I thought I knew who was regarded as the best player--the MVP, as it were--for the period 1860-1870. Now, I have no clue.

Yeah, consensus always disappears when you look at it directly.

Jim Creighton would be in there somewhere.

Dickey Pearce for a few years.

Then Joe Start.

I think it would be George Wright by 1868-69-70?

Could you put a list together?



Later, from the Ballot thread
8. Joe Start--#1 in 1912. Best player and best hitter in the world for a short time between Pearce and G. Wright.

Marc,
I'm happy to see that you were able to work out something plausible for yourself. I wouldn't be able to improve it reliably.

Does anyone have TB8 or TB9, a project directed by John Thorn using intellectual property holdings of Total Baseball, Inc., or Total Sports Publications, and using about half of the old team?

Several years ago Thorn was working on the greatest players in baseball according to contemporaries. He surveyed me and others informally regarding something like the top five of each decade beginning in the 1850s. As I recall, he said that his publisher was keen on this feature. --something new that would extend the old TB material, or so I understood it.
   110. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: February 21, 2008 at 12:20 AM (#2696081)
Doing run estimation for 19th century teams raises all sorts of complications. I just checked 1871 Levi Meyerle, using my homegrown run estimator which has an excellent RMSE for that league-season. If I see how many runs Meyerle was worth *to Philadelphia*, I get 66--precisely the same figure BP has for his UEQR. And comparing him to an average player in that context and converting to BP's "standard league," I get him with 29 BRAA--reasonably close to BP's figure of 27. This is encouraging, as it suggests that BP's offensive numbers may be basically usable for the 19th century (I'll do some more test cases in a bit).
HOWEVAR--if Meyerle had instead been on a league-average offensive team in 1871, he would only have been worth 54 runs total, and 16 BP runs above average, because he would have had fewer runners on base when he hit, and the team could not have taken as much advantage of the outs he saved through his high OBP. Now which is the correct approach? I have no idea.
   111. Paul Wendt Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:00 AM (#2696114)
Isn't that problem chronic, a plague on numerous run estimators that use data on team offense to estimate parameters of run production functions for players?
Barry Bonds 2003 should be another extreme example.
   112. jimd Posted: February 21, 2008 at 01:26 AM (#2696140)
Boston wins pennant with OPS+ 79, ERA+ 101.

Boston committed 3.8 Errors per Game in 1878.
The rest of the league averaged 5.0 Errors per Game.

If they were all errors that were effectively a single,
that difference alone would be equivalent to 20 points of team OPS+.
   113. Chris Cobb Posted: February 21, 2008 at 02:57 AM (#2696211)
The run environment of these early seasons is considerably richer than the BP average of 4.5 per game. Normalizing the fielding runs but not the batting runs advantages those whose strength is hitting, disadvantaging the fielders.

Interestingly, all the strong fielders did very well in the study--Glasscock, Richardson, and Bennett look very good, as do the fine-fielding CFs Hines and Gore--while the fielders viewed as indifferent--Sutton, Jones, and Browning--all do poorly. Perhaps the good defenders should have done even better than they did, but my basic sense is that any study that ranks Jack Glasscock ahead of Paul Hines and that finds Hardy Richardson similar to George Gore can't be disadvantaging the fielders systematically too much.

(Any way to cross-check the batting runs?)

I did eyeball comparison to BRAA for all the players to confirm that the two sets of offensive numbers were not radically at variance. RCAA and BRAA did not match exactly, but they were similar. Since the highest-scoring years are from the NA, and the RCAP numbers that I used for those seasons are estimates derived from WARP1 (Sinins starts with 1876), that should guarantee that those numbers are normalized to a run context compatible with the FRAA for those seasons.

When I post the comparative study lining up the findings of the different offensive measures, that should provide a more systematic test of my eyeball estimates.

Re the comments on Boston 1878: anyone who wants to examine WARP1 closely would find this a useful test case for the reliability of WARP's fielding models for the early game environment. I glanced at their treatment of the team (I was particularly interested in getting a read on their assessment of Sutton's defense) and I found that their system saw the team's fielding as only slightly above average: 15 FRAA total, if I recall correctly. They seem to attribute most of the team's success to Tommy Bond's ability to allow fewer runs than his hits allowed would indicate that he should have.

I take what I have observed as indicators that WARP1 may not be adequately accounting for the effects of a high-error environment on fielding values, but a more careful examination would be needed to make a firm case one way or another.
   114. Cblau Posted: February 21, 2008 at 03:54 AM (#2696254)
The PL is out-of-line with the other seasons: was the "Keefe ball" lively (relatively)?


The PL moved the pitcher back 2 or 3 feet, with the idea of having more hitting.
   115. jimd Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:09 AM (#2696263)
Perhaps the good defenders should have done even better than they did,

I was speaking theoretically. As a practical matter, looking at your player ratings in detail, the discount would move Bennett ahead of Richardson, and it might move Caruthers ahead of Browning/Jones, depending on how far your final number for Bob in this system is behind that hitting duo.
   116. jimd Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:14 AM (#2696268)
The PL moved the pitcher back 2 or 3 feet, with the idea of having more hitting.

It certainly was successful. 6.88 R/G vs 5.58 in the other two leagues.
   117. jimd Posted: February 21, 2008 at 04:33 AM (#2696277)
Re the comments on Boston 1878:

WARP has little insight to add on this team. They have it as -62 BRAA, 15 FRAA, and 45 FRAA. Grand total of 2 runs below average. And they went 41-19, inexplicably winning 11 unexplained games more than they should have in a 60 game season. And the championship. Nearly 3 stdev away from expected (@ 2.9). They were 5 games ahead of their Pythag. Went 16-9 in 1-run games (and 3 of those losses were after they had clinched).

Either they're the biggest fluke in MLB history, or they had something extra going for them that doesn't show in the statistics, even when analyzed by WARP.
   118. OCF Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:32 AM (#2696318)
Either they're the biggest fluke in MLB history, or they had something extra going for them that doesn't show in the statistics, even when analyzed by WARP.

I'm willing to entertain another possibility: the statistics are just wrong. We are talking about the dawn of effective record-keeping, right? And the "official" stats that we rely on were mostly compiled afterwards by mining through old newspapers, weren't they? And everyone - bb-ref, Lahman, BP, etc. - are all ultimately relying on the same numbers. Now look at this pattern for the Boston players from 1877 to 1878 to 1879, in OPS+:

Snyder: 74, 43, 89
Morrill: 101, 68, 118
Burdock: 80, 98, 77 - OK, he's the big exception.
Sutton: 110, 68, 82
Wright: 97, 67, 145
Leonard: 87, 89, DNP - the only other exception.
Manning: 151, 86, DNP
O'Rourke: 163, 122, 172
Schafer: 90, -20, DNP
Bond: 53, 43, 70

I didn't apply any statistical tests to that, but ask yourself: how likely is it that nearly everyone on the team - everyone except Burdock and Leonard - would have a LARGE dropoff in offensive production from 1877 to 1878? And that (except for Burdock) everyone still with the team would rebound in 1879? And that in the year in which everyone on the team slumped at once, the team won the pennant anyway.

Something smells here. Now suppose the following scenario: for some reason, a significant number of Boston hits and Boston runs scored were not recorded in the primary sources upon which all subsequent scholarship draws from, or were mistallied in the secondary act of compling the statistics. How many runs? Oh, as a first guess, about as many as needed to even out that Pythag. record. How many hits? Maybe about enough to even out those individual lines - and maybe Burdock had a career year.

I don't know, of course. I'm merely speculating. Or maybe the number of outs (hence AB) is wrong. Or what is listed as AB should be outs. Or something. But it just doesn't look like it's properly recorded.
   119. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: February 21, 2008 at 05:37 AM (#2696323)
Ya know, OCF, that's a remarkably convincing argument. They did after all just change Ty Cobb's hits and Hack Wilson's 1930 RBI just a few years ago...
   120. Paul Wendt Posted: February 21, 2008 at 06:14 PM (#2696573)
114. Cblau Posted: February 20, 2008 at 09:54 PM (#2696254)
> [jimd] The PL is out-of-line with the other seasons: was the "Keefe ball" lively (relatively)?

The PL moved the pitcher back 2 or 3 feet, with the idea of having more hitting.


I didn't know that. . . . The Heitz/Bingham chronology in TB3 says pitcher's lines 6'x4' with front line 51' from the center of home base.

The PL dropped a ban on raising either foot when not in the act of delivering the ball and it did not adopt a new ban on intentionally discoloring the ball.

The NL and AA permitted subsitution at any time by "two payers whose names shall be printed on the scorecard as extra players". The PL permitted that only at the end of a complete inning.

The PL stipulated two umpires, to stand "behind the bat" and "in the field".
   121. DavidFoss Posted: February 21, 2008 at 08:07 PM (#2696712)
Something smells here. Now suppose the following scenario: for some reason, a significant number of Boston hits and Boston runs scored were not recorded in the primary sources upon which all subsequent scholarship draws from, or were mistallied in the secondary act of compling the statistics. How many runs? Oh, as a first guess, about as many as needed to even out that Pythag. record. How many hits? Maybe about enough to even out those individual lines - and maybe Burdock had a career year.

The runs are probably correct. The game logs are available and I'm sure the scores were reported in the Boston papers every day. 1878 was a long time ago, but the print media was quite mature at this point. (Often box scores in the 1870s were more detailed that those in the pre-USAToday 1970s.) Looking at the game logs, Boston simply owned Indianapolis and Milwaukee that year going 21-3... seven 1-run victories against Milwaukee alone really tosses a wrench in their Pythag estimate.

You have something with the hits though. Last in hits and last in walks while playing in a hitters park? I'm guessing they scored at ton of UER. Anyone got UER data for their offense? Looking at *pitching* UER data, Boston easily leads the league with a 1.70 UERA. Every other team is between 2.75 and 3.75.

I don't know why this effect would hit suddenly in 1878 and go away the following season though. Almost sounds like there was a ground rule in Boston that was causing a lot of ROE's there.
   122. Paul Wendt Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:04 PM (#2696763)
You have something with the hits though. Last in hits and last in walks while playing in a hitters park? I'm guessing they scored at ton of UER. Anyone got UER data for their offense? Looking at *pitching* UER data, Boston easily leads the league with a 1.70 UERA. Every other team is between 2.75 and 3.75.

The latter was my main point in posting. I didn't really think about it, presumed that it reflects the great superiority of Boston fielders over their colleagues.
If it is partly a difference in scoring between Boston and other cities, then Tommy Bond was better, Boston fielders worse, and opponent batters worse than we infer from the record. But the Boston batting record makes it incredible that the scoring favored batters and pitchers when the home team was at bat, and why would any bias not appear then?

(It's plausible, especially later in baseball history with players more concerned about their records, that a bias in scoring during home team innings would not be duplicated with the team in the field, because bias for hits against errors helps the fielders and hurts the pitchers when the team is in the field. But vice versa is implausible. During the home team innings all the home players prefer more hits and fewer errors.)

--
NL1876-1890 playing records on based on the work of John Tattersall. The 1968-69 ICI project did not revisit those leagues and official league records are missing or meager, iirc. Tattersall papers may be at the NBLibrary.
   123. sunnyday2 Posted: February 21, 2008 at 09:28 PM (#2696797)
Cblau Posted: February 20, 2008 at 09:54 PM (#2696254)

The PL moved the pitcher back 2 or 3 feet, with the idea of having more hitting.


Should this be understood literally? The PL moved the pitcher's mound back? I am flabbergasted that I have never ever heard this before, if it is indeed true.
   124. jimd Posted: February 21, 2008 at 11:21 PM (#2696939)
The PL moved the pitcher's mound back?

No mound yet. Just a pitcher's box. The pitching rubber was introduced with 60'6". Mounds came later during the late 1890's.

The PL dropped a ban on raising either foot when not in the act of delivering the ball

The 1880's had a number of rule changes aimed at toning down/eliminating mobile deliveries like Jim "Grasshopper" Whitney's. The pitching rubber (and the rule requiring foot contact during delivery) seems to have been the final solution to this problem.
   125. Paul Wendt Posted: February 22, 2008 at 06:24 AM (#2697176)
One more thing about Boston 1878.

Jack Manning pitched one complete game winning 6-2.
Tommy Bond pitched 57 complete games.
ERA+ = 114 with Bond pitching, 59 games.

In his two relief appearances Manning coughed up 17 runs in 11.3 - C innings where C is the length of his complete game, thereby dropping the team ERA+ from somewhere above 114 to 101.

That is part of beating Pythagoras.
   126. sunnyday2 Posted: February 22, 2008 at 06:30 PM (#2697434)
OK, rephrase.

Did they move the pitcher's box back?
   127. Chris Cobb Posted: February 22, 2008 at 08:56 PM (#2697566)
Meant to post this yesterday, but all the time I had access, the site wasn't willing to upload it. Let's hope today is different!

Some followup data to my posting on RCAP + FRAA and related RAR totals.

First, for those who want to adjust replacement levels while using the runs above average measures, here are adjusted games played by decade for each of the pre-1893 position players:

Player.....to 1870..1871-9..1880s...1890s
J
Start.....1395....1395....934
E
Sutton.....162....1418...1222
D
White........0....1443...1359....147
P
Hines........0....1176...1573....180
C
Jones........0.....667...1236
J
Glasscock....0.....154...1569....706
H
Richardson...0.....152...1469....312
C
Bennett......0.....132...1225....299
G
Gore.........0.....122...1431....343
H
Stovey.......0.......0...1687....345 
P
Browning.....0.......0...1097....451

Replacement level rates used in my study above
to 1870 – 24 runs
/162 g
1871
-79 – 24 runs/162 g
1880s – 21 runs
/162 g
1890
-92 – 20 runs/162 g
1893 – 19 runs
/162 g
1894
-95 – 18.5 runs/162 g 


My “system’s season-adjusted RAA vs. RAR with value of average above replacement set to 18 runs/162 games for all seasons. These are competition adjusted for AA/UA players.

Player......RAA....RAR...adjGames
D
White....742...1070....2949
Glasscock
...687....957....2429
J
Start....520....934....3723
P
Hines....521....847....2930
G
Gore.....605....816....1896
Richardson
..567....782....1933
C
Bennett..583....767....1656
E
Sutton...415....726....2802
C
Jones....430....641....1903
P
Browning.441....613....1548
H
Stovey...248....484....2023 


Comparative offensive measures, 1876-92
RCAP and RCAA are from Lee Sinins’ Encyclopedia
BRAA1 is BP’s WARP1
BRAA2 is BP’s WARP2
BRAR1 is BP’s WARP1 batting above replacment
WS* is batting win shares X3 to scale it to BP runs

None of these totals are adjusted for season length or competition quality, except for BRAA2, which is competition-adjusted.

Player.....RCAP...RCAA...BRAA1..BRAA2..BRAR1...WS*
DWhite....216....191....226....164....397...447
P
Hines....216....343....364....285....564...623
G
Gore.....326....401....357....303....530...599
H
Richards.289....288....282....219....465...542
C
Bennett..196.....92....155....115....284...294
J
Glassco..289....189....208....127....441...510
E
Sutton...159....130....145.....93....284...351
J
Start.....52....166....168....126....277...334
P
Browning.478....582....496....328....645...594
H
Stovey...262....485....423....280....649...696
B
Caruther.222....181....155....103....238...272 


For the purposes of considering my choice to combine Sinins’ RCAP and WARP1’s FRAA, notice that RCAA and BRAA are scaled similarly for this era. I’m not sure if this is because RCAA are also normalized, or simple luck. I suspect the latter, since players with significant 1870s playing time all have lower RCAA than BRAA1, while players with 1880s PT tend to be higher, with the obvious exceptions of Bennett and Glasscock. The AA players gain the most in RCAA vs. BRAA1.

Therefore, I conclude that combining a normalized and a non-normalized stat may be favoring some cohorts of players over others. However, the apparent differences by era and league are not larger than some of the differences that appear in players who were contemporaries in the same league (e.g. Gore vs. Bennett), so with this small sample, I can’t be certain that it isn’t just chance that the differences seem to line up by decade. The two measures clearly aren’t using the same formulas. In the end, the range of values is not incommensurate, so I think that combining them in order to use RCAP provides a perspective that is more likely to accurately reveal the players’ value than using WARP1’s FRAR, with its extremely low replacement levels that do not seem scaled to the fielding spectrum of the early game.

Win Shares offers a third offensive perspective, scaled similarly to BRAR1. The norm seems to be for WS* to be 60-70 runs higher than BRAR1, but WS really dings Bennett and Browning. I wonder why.
   128. sunnyday2 Posted: February 22, 2008 at 08:58 PM (#2697570)
I guess we're over-rating Stovey.
   129. Chris Cobb Posted: February 22, 2008 at 09:05 PM (#2697578)
I guess we're over-rating Stovey.

That's the conclusion I've been reluctantly reaching, because he's a long-time favorite player, whom I supported back in the day.

If one favors the win shares assessment of his offense, gives him strong additional credit for baserunning, goes with a small AA discount, adds some credit for his having been mispositioned as a first baseman in the early part of his career, and doesn't accept RCAP's dinging of him for going up against the ABC boys early in his career, he remains competitive with his contemporaries. I can see doing any of those things. But I have a harder time seeing it right to do all of them.
   130. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: February 22, 2008 at 09:44 PM (#2697607)
When does this election end?
   131. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: February 23, 2008 at 04:42 AM (#2697840)
Sunday night 8 p.m. EST.

Anyone going to be in Seattle March 3-14? I'm going to be there for work . . .
   132. andrew siegel Posted: February 23, 2008 at 08:13 AM (#2697884)
I moved to Seattle last year, Joe. We should definitely get together while you are in town.
   133. Howie Menckel Posted: February 23, 2008 at 03:11 PM (#2697912)
Apropos of nothing related to Group 3, but I've started on a new toy.
National Association only here, for space reasons. It's listing the distribution of HOM players by team per year, in order of finish (for NA, that's most wins to least).
All teams listed.
Part-timers (less than half a typical team's games that year) with asterisk.

1871
Philadelphia
Chicago
Boston - P Al Spalding, C Cal McVey, 2B-SS Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
Washington
New York - 1B Joe Start, SS Dickey Pearce
Troy - OF Lip Pike
Fort Wayne
Cleveland - C Deacon White, 3B Ezra Sutton
Rockford - 3B Cap Anson

1872
Boston - P Al Spalding, C Cal McVey, 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
Baltimore - OF-2B Lip Pike
New York - 1B Joe Start, SS Dickey Pearce
Philadelphia - 3B Cap Anson
Troy
Brooklyn
Cleveland - C(2O) Deacon White, 3B Ezra Sutton
Middletown - SS-C Jim O'Rourke
Brooklyn
Washington Olympics
Washington Nationals - 1B Paul Hines*

1873
Boston - P Al Spalding, C Deacon White, 1B-OF Jim O'Rourke, 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
Philadelphia
Baltimore - C Cal McVey, OF Lip Pike
New York - 1B Joe Start
Philadelphia - 1B Cap Anson, 3B Ezra Sutton
Brooklyn - SS Dickey Pearce
Washington - OF Paul Hines
Elizabeth
Baltimore

1874
Boston - P Al Spalding, C Deacon White, 1B Jim O'Rourke, 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright, OF-C Cal McVey
New York - 1B Joe Start
Philadelphia Athletics - 1B-3B Cap Anson, 3B-SS Ezra Sutton
Philadelphia Whites
Chicago - OF Paul Hines
Brooklyn - SS Dickey Pearce
Hartford - OF-SS Lip Pike
Baltimore

1875
Boston - P Al Spalding, C Deacon White, 1B-OF Cal McVey, 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright, OF-3B Jim O'Rourke
Philadelphia Athletics - 1B-OF Cap Anson, 3B Ezra Sutton
Hartford - (Charley Jones 1 G)
St. Louis - P-OF Pud Galvin*, SS Dickey Pearce, OF Lip Pike
Philadelphia Whites
Chicago - OF-2B Paul Hines
New York - 1B Joe Start
New Haven
Washington
St. Louis
Philadelphia Centennials
Brooklyn
Keokuk - OF Charley Jones*
   134. Paul Wendt Posted: February 24, 2008 at 02:28 AM (#2698306)
* Hines and Jones, age 17 and 25 by 2007 listings, arrived on this scene as regular players for teams that did not complete the season. Galvin arrived as a temporary player for a strong team, the first St Louis Brown Stockings.

That's the Athletics winning the 1871 pennant and fielding Cap Anson in 1872-75; the new Philadelphia club (sometimes called Whites) finishing second in 1873 with a HOMeless team.
   135. Paul Wendt Posted: February 24, 2008 at 02:35 AM (#2698312)
* Hines and Jones, age 17 and 25 by 2007 listings, arrived on this scene as regular players for teams that did not complete the season. Galvin arrived as a temporary player for a strong team, the first St Louis Brown Stockings.

That's the Athletics winning the 1871 pennant and fielding Cap Anson in 1872-75; the new Philadelphia club (sometimes called Whites) finishing second in 1873 with a HOMeless team.
   136. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: February 24, 2008 at 07:41 AM (#2698459)
Hey, PW, unrelated question that I came across from this era. The Chicago White Stockings (aka Cubs) go back to 1870, but missed 2 years after the fire. The Boston Red Stockings (aka Braves) go back continuously to 1871. So who's older? I think the key issue is how much the White Stockings were the same franchise in 1871 and 1874. Was it run by the same people, or was it mostly new huys using the old name? You're the expert.
   137. Paul Wendt Posted: February 24, 2008 at 04:49 PM (#2698528)
(In the primary sense, not baseball lingo, both "franchises" date from 1876 when the two clubs and six others became original franchise holders in the National League PBBC.)

Chicago is older in the sense you mean. The club remained in business 1872-73, acquiring(leasing?) a site, building and letting a ballpark. See Wikipedia "23rd Street Grounds" and for a little more along the same lines Union Base-Ball Grounds, Dexter Park, Ogden Park.

The club was re-organized after the fire but, if I understand correctly, we would need to break up the histories of many major league clubs if we recognized such re-organizations as new identities.

If you visit "Chicago Cubs" and "History of the Chicago Cubs" at Wikipedia you will find that they have less to say about the club before 1876 than I am writing in this note. They do not even provide links to the ballpark articles and stubs, except in the template listing of the league ballparks (23rd Street, Union). The main articles on current mlb clubs seem to be controlled by current fans.
   138. Paul Wendt Posted: February 24, 2008 at 05:02 PM (#2698533)
Union Base-Ball Grounds (a.k.a. Lake Park, Lake Front Park)
with links to other pre-"Lake Front I" parks in paragraph one, footnote one.

By the way, Union BBG is version zero of the famous Lake Front Park where Ned Williamson and others hit their 1884 home runs. See the article.
This week I read a note that one day in 1883 Abner Dalrymple and Cap Anson both hit four doubles in one game. I don't know how many of those were over the fence grounds rules doubles but the incident generally supports a frequent point by Marc sunnyday2.
   139. Paul Wendt Posted: February 25, 2008 at 03:22 AM (#2698962)
I have no new synthesis. Doing some secondary reseach in the last several days I have exhumed the player threads on Sutton, Richardson, Start, Stovey, Bennett, Childs, Hack. That is my research and writing style,
good for seeing that early Chicago ballpark have Wikipedia entries; no good for producing "Chicago Cubs". Most of my flurry in the player threads is quantitative but piecemeal, little studies like early Bill James, nothing systematic or comprehensive.
The gist has been to mitigate, qualify, underscore, or extend some points made in our discussions this fortnight and during these 100-odd years.
For myself I summarize as follows, indicating net gain (+) or loss(-) to the player's standing. But those notations are entirely relative to my private preliminary ranking and to my own concerns: which discussion did I really pay attention, etc.

++ Start - by inference from Runs and Outs data, consistently 1864-68 the best batter on the overall best team; overall 1864-70 the best batter on that team by a good margin
(I thought he was the team leading batter on-and-off, like Al Reach for the Athletics --or like the Cardinals might get a best team award for the 1960s or 1980s)

+ Stovey - firstbasemen's bats were really booming during his tenure there, 1880-86; it's more than ABC
(moderate mitigation of Chris Cobb's recent big downgrade)

+ Sutton - already a star player as a professional rookie in 1870; that OPS+ 68 is part of Boston's 1878 championship oddity
(moderate plus)

+ Bennett - from concerns about his playing time; his record for play at catcher is impressive although he differs from some by sitting on the bench when not catching
(moderate plus if you were with me at the beginning but you had to be there)

o Richardson (neutral, although poorly informed remarks maybe moved others to research his defense - a plus)

The context for my "Hack" and "Childs" studies --win shares studies of leading 3B and 2B in their times-- was a preliminary judgment that they should rank around #17

++ Hack - third base was generally the home of good players during Hack's time, commonly better than their teammates at short and second; when he led the league it wasn't by one win share and he was once second to Mel Ott 39-36; the only remaining concern about quality of his record among 3Bmen is the general one about wartime competition.

-- Childs - second base was weakly staffed during Childs time; he led his league 2Bmen by win shares for eight seasons running but that includes two ties and three close calls, and those five seasons with ratings that would typically generate about one league leadership total.
   140. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: February 25, 2008 at 03:32 AM (#2698964)
Just an FYI - the election has been extended a week, since we only received 18 valid ballots. Hopefully this will allow some other regular voters time to complete a ballot.
   141. Howie Menckel Posted: February 25, 2008 at 05:26 AM (#2699011)
And for those looking for more trivial pursuits:

I tracked the move of multiple HOM teammates either from one city to another, or from one league to another in the same city. The examples follow.
Interesting that Brouthers and Richardson stuck together from Buffalo to Detroit to Boston NL to Boston PL to Boston AA (they loved the clam chowder?), from 1885-91. They took White with them to Detroit, then Bennett with them to Boston, then KKelly and Radbourn from Boston PL to Boston NL. Brouthers later took a young Keeler with him from Brooklyn to Baltimore.

Ewing/Connor/O'Rourke/Gore, as well as Galvin and Beckley, never left town while moving over to the PL version in their city in 1890, and then back again in 1891.

1875-76 - Spalding/DWhite/McVey/Barnes go from Boston NA to Chicago NL
1878-79 - GWright and O'Rourke go from Boston NL to Providence NL
1882-83 - Ewing and Connor go from Troy NL to New York NL
1885-86 - Start and Hines go from Providence NL to Washington NL
1885-86 - Brouthers/Richardson/White go from Buffalo NL to Detroit NL
1888-89 - Brouthers/Richardson/Bennett go from Detroit NL to Boston NL

1889-90 - Ewing/Connor/O'Rourke/Gore/Keefe go from NY NL to NY PL
1889-90 - Brouthers/Richardson/KKelly/Radbourn go from Boston NL to Boston PL
1889-90 - Galvin and Beckley go from Pittsburgh NL to Pittsburgh PL
1889-90 - Rusie and Glasscock go from Indianapolis NL to New York NL
1890-91 - Brouthers and Richardson go from Boston PL to Boston AA
1890-91 - Ewing/Connor/O'Rourke/Gore go from New York PL to New York NL
1890-91 - Galvin and Beckley go from Pittsburgh PL to Pittsburgh NL
1890-91 - Stovey and KKelly* go from Boston PL to Boston NL

1893-94 - Brouthers and Keeler* go from Brooklyn NL to Baltimore NL
1898-99 - Young/Childs/Wallace/Burkett go from Cleveland to St. Louis
1899-00 - McGinnity and Sheckard go from Baltimore to Brooklyn
1899-00 - HWagner and Clarke go from Louisville to Pittsburgh
   142. Howie Menckel Posted: February 25, 2008 at 05:26 AM (#2699013)
Those are only thru 1900, obviously....
   143. OCF Posted: February 25, 2008 at 06:30 AM (#2699041)
1899-00 - McGinnity and Sheckard go from Baltimore to Brooklyn

That's just the cleanup phase, involving players who weren't yet well-known superstars. The main Baltimore to Brooklyn move was in 1898-99 when Keeler, Kelley, and Jennings made that move.

And for 1899-00 Louiville to Pittsburgh, you should also have included Waddell.

Of course, all of the the 1898-99 and 1899-00 moves you mentioned were part of the syndicate ownership scandal. Note also that the three looted franchises (Baltimore, Louisville, and Cleveland) dropped out of the league in 1899-1900. (Louisville wasn't cleaned out until it was folded.) Really, the most surprising move involving Baltimore, Louisville, and Cleveland is the one that didn't happen: McGraw didn't go to Brooklyn.
   144. Howie Menckel Posted: February 25, 2008 at 07:12 AM (#2699059)
Thanks, OCF.
The Jennings-Keeler-Kelley line somehow got dropped in the translation.
Waddell was a "part-time" guy in 1899 (barely made my 10-game minimum), but still should have been included.

New and improved list:

1875-76 - Spalding/DWhite/McVey/Barnes go from Boston NA to Chicago NL
1878-79 - GWright and O'Rourke go from Boston NL to Providence NL
1882-83 - Ewing and Connor go from Troy NL to New York NL
1885-86 - Start and Hines go from Providence NL to Washington NL
1885-86 - Brouthers/Richardson/White go from Buffalo NL to Detroit NL
1888-89 - Brouthers/Richardson/Bennett go from Detroit NL to Boston NL

1889-90 - Ewing/Connor/O'Rourke/Gore/Keefe go from NY NL to NY PL
1889-90 - Brouthers/Richardson/KKelly/Radbourn go from Boston NL to Boston PL
1889-90 - Galvin and Beckley go from Pittsburgh NL to Pittsburgh PL
1889-90 - Rusie and Glasscock go from Indianapolis NL to New York NL
1890-91 - Brouthers and Richardson go from Boston PL to Boston AA
1890-91 - Ewing/Connor/O'Rourke/Gore go from New York PL to New York NL
1890-91 - Galvin and Beckley go from Pittsburgh PL to Pittsburgh NL
1890-91 - Stovey and KKelly* go from Boston PL to Boston NL

1893-94 - Brouthers and Keeler* go from Brooklyn NL to Baltimore NL
1898-99 - Young/Childs/Wallace/Burkett go from Cleveland to St. Louis
1898-99 - Jennings/Keeler/Kelley go from Baltimore to Brooklyn
1899-00 - McGinnity and Sheckard go from Baltimore to Brooklyn
1899-00 - HWagner/Clarke/Waddell* go from Louisville to Pittsburgh
   145. jimd Posted: February 25, 2008 at 10:09 PM (#2699592)
I think the key issue is how much the White Stockings were the same franchise in 1871 and 1874.

From a player point-of-view, there is little continuity. The 1871 team used 11 players, 8 regular starters who played at least 24 of the 28 games, 2 other guys who played 20 and 18 games (who was the "starting" CF and who was the 10th man is hard to say), and a 18 yr old fill-in for 3 games. 5 were signed by Troy the next season, 1 to the Athletics, and 1 to Cleveland; the other 3 do not reappear in the major-league lists again (and the fill-in would play 2 more games for Chicago in 1875). 3 of them would play in 1873, all for the Philadelphia Whites, and all 3 would go back to Chicago for the 1874 team, though 2B Wood could no longer play, losing a leg to a serious infection during the 1873 off-season.
   146. Paul Wendt Posted: February 26, 2008 at 12:29 AM (#2699728)
1890-91 - Brouthers and Richardson go from Boston PL to Boston AA

The Boston PL club survived and joined the AA. I don't know what determined player movements such as Stovey's return to Boston NL. For example, had the PL club signed Brouthers and Richardson but not Stovey to multi-year contracts? or re-signed them for 1891 before some date that proved crucial in practice. Anyway, when did the NL decide which PL contracts to recognize?
143. OCF Posted: February 25, 2008 at 12:30 AM (#2699041)
> 1899-00 - McGinnity and Sheckard go from Baltimore to Brooklyn

That's just the cleanup phase, involving players who weren't yet well-known superstars. The main Baltimore to Brooklyn move was in 1898-99 when Keeler, Kelley, and Jennings made that move.


Howie called it a trivial pursuit, I know.
I'm sure you all know that many of the listed "moves" are incomplete; the moves were more comprehensive but other parties are not HOM players.

In this case, the crucial missing party is Baltimore manager/minority-owner Ned Hanlon (HOF). In a sense, Hanlon and majority-owner vonderHorst after 1898 chose to break up the Orioles in this fashion. They got ownership in the Brooklyn club and vice versa for the majority and minority Brooklyn owners. (For example, Hanlon and Ebbets both got 10% of Baltimore and 10% of Brooklyn.) In 1899 Hanlon was effectively the modern "general manager" of both clubs and the field manager in Brooklyn. McGraw was the field manager in Baltimore.

McGraw got (requested? demanded?) and Hanlon gave (offered? conceded?) the promise that he would not move players between Baltimore and Brooklyn in-season. He would make the player allocation decisions pre-season and it would be McGraw's job to do the best possible on the field and at the gate with that team behind him.

more on this at "John McGraw"
   147. Paul Wendt Posted: February 26, 2008 at 12:35 AM (#2699732)
1890-91 - Brouthers and Richardson go from Boston PL to Boston AA
1890-91 - Stovey and KKelly* go from Boston PL to Boston NL


The Boston PL club survived and joined the AA. I don't know what determined player movements such as Stovey's return to Boston NL. For example, had the PL club signed Brouthers and Richardson but not Stovey to multi-year contracts? or re-signed them for 1891 before some date that proved crucial in practice. Anyway, when did the NL decide which PL contracts to recognize?

Kelly did not move from Boston PL to Boston NL. Rather he returned to Boston late in the 1891 season. The AA put a club in Cincinnati with Kelly at the helm, hoping to capitalize on his superstardom. It didn't work out.
   148. Howie Menckel Posted: February 26, 2008 at 02:36 AM (#2699775)
Right, Paul.
Kelly did finish the 1891 season with Boston NL, but indeed he didn't go there directly.

per bb-ref:

August, 1891: Released by the Cincinnati Kelly's Killers.

August 17, 1891: Signed as a Free Agent with the Boston Reds (AA).

August 25, 1891: Jumped from the Boston Reds to the Boston Beaneaters (NL).
   149. Paul Wendt Posted: February 29, 2008 at 03:21 AM (#2702690)
Kelly in "Ballot ... Group 3"
17. Joe Gordon: (PHOM 1976). Post-1893 eligibles, he ranks 5th by WARP, 8th by WS. 12th in the 1940s. 19th best at second base. 6 times WS all-star, 5 times STATS, 7 times WARP all-star. 4 times WS gold glove. 2 times WARP gold glove.

20. Stan Hack (PHOM 1972): Of the post-1893 eligibles, he ranks 7th by WARP, 7th by WS. He ranks 25th among 1930s position players. He ranks 15th among 3rd basemen. 7 times WS all-star, 4 times STATS all-star, 8 times WARP all-star. He is in a tight knot with the players above him.


"Of the post-1893 eligibles" -
Does this mean within the post-1893 subset of the 21 players in Group 3?
by career win shares --when adjusted for length of schedule, military service, wartime discount, etc-- Hack and Gordon rank 7 and 8? (That may be a miscount. They must be ahead of Child and Ferrell and I count only 9 post-1893.)
Or does this mean among all post-1893 eligibles with primary fielding position 3B and 2B --Hack 7th among 3B, Gordon 8th among 2B?
   150. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: February 29, 2008 at 06:56 AM (#2702795)
Andrew - I sent you an email through the site - is your address not up to date?

Howie, I got your email, haven't had time to look it over. Will do so tomorrow . . .
   151. mulder & scully Posted: February 29, 2008 at 05:33 PM (#2703052)
Paul,

the post 1893 eligibles refers only to the 8 position players who played the majority of their games after 1893 who are HOM/non-HOF: Dahlen, Keller, Groh, Hack, Gordon, Magee, Shepard, and Childs. And career win shares is one part out of 4 for me. I also consider peak, prime, and "per season" numbers.

Players 10 - 20 were all in a tight knot, and I may still rearrange them over the next two days since we have the extension.

Hope that helps,

Kelly
   152. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 04:16 AM (#2704023)
Collecting the IA/NA player and team statistics for mailing to Kelly (too late for analysis this weekend), I found the 1872 and 1873 reports on batting positions by Bob Tiemann. I think I have 1871 somewhere, for I vaguely recall that Levi Meyerle was batting 8th or 9th. For now I have 1872 and 1873. Here is a summary for the eight HOM members who were active, four in Group 3 and four more in Group 4.
Let me use city names where unambiguous.
* means every game played by the team

Player 72team batpos batpos batpos (>20%) 73team batpos batpos batpos (>20%)
games games games games games games games

Pike Bal 3 4 5-2-6 Bal 3
56 25 14 15 56 52

McVey Bos 4 Bal 4 2
46 46 37 21 10

Barnes Bos 2 Bos 2
45 45 60* 60*
In 1872 Harry Wright used a fixed lineup except for a four games with 7th-8th switched. Substitute Dave Birdsall was always in the batpos of the man he replaced.
The rest of the lineup was brother George 1, Barnes 2, Andy Leonard 3, McVey 4, Al Spalding 5, Charlie Gould 6, Harry Schafer 7, Fraley Rogers 8, Harry 9.
In 1873 five players had entirely fixed batting positions with four others all greater than 90-10%. Substitute Jack Manning was usually if not always in the batpos of the man he replaced.
The rest of the lineup was brother George 1, Barnes 2, Spalding 3, Leonard 4, White 5, Jim O'Rourke 6, Bob Addy 7, Schafer 8, Harry 9.

White Cle 4 3 Bos 5
22* 18 4 60* 60*

Sutton Cle 2 6 7 PhiAth 6
22* 11 6 5 51 51
only 22 team games played Anson now bats 3 after pitcher McBride

Start NY 3 2 NY 4 3
54 43 10 53* 44 9
Bellan bats 2 in his 7 early games played

Pearce NY 6 8 3 BroAtl 2 1
44 22 11 9 55* 45 10
Candy Cummings bats 9 only 40%! Ferguson bats 4-5-6

Hines Was 8 4 Was 2 3 6
11* 6 3 39* 17 12 9
only 11 team games played
   153. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 04:17 AM (#2704025)
Player 72team batpos batpos batpos (>20%) 73team batpos batpos batpos (>20%)
games games games games games games games

Pike Bal 3 4 5-2-6 Bal 3
56 25 14 15 56 52

McVey Bos 4 Bal 4 2
46 46 37 21 10

Barnes Bos 2 Bos 2
45 45 60* 60*
In 1872 Harry Wright used a fixed lineup except for a four games with 7th-8th switched. Substitute Dave Birdsall was always in the batpos of the man he replaced.
The rest of the lineup was brother George 1, Barnes 2, Andy Leonard 3, McVey 4, Al Spalding 5, Charlie Gould 6, Harry Schafer 7, Fraley Rogers 8, Harry 9.
In 1873 five players had entirely fixed batting positions with four others all greater than 90-10%. Substitute Jack Manning was usually if not always in the batpos of the man he replaced.
The rest of the lineup was brother George 1, Barnes 2, Spalding 3, Leonard 4, White 5, Jim O'Rourke 6, Bob Addy 7, Schafer 8, Harry 9.

White Cle 4 3 Bos 5
22* 18 4 60* 60*

Sutton Cle 2 6 7 PhiAth 6
22* 11 6 5 51 51
only 22 team games played Anson now bats 3 after pitcher McBride

Start NY 3 2 NY 4 3
54 43 10 53* 44 9
Bellan bats 2 in his 7 early games played

Pearce NY 6 8 3 BroAtl 2 1
44 22 11 9 55* 45 10
Candy Cummings bats 9 only 40%! Ferguson bats 4-5-6

Hines Was 8 4 Was 2 3 6
11* 6 3 39* 17 12 9
only 11 team games played
   154. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 04:53 AM (#2704053)
Collecting the IA/NA player and team statistics for mailing to Kelly (too late for analysis this weekend), I found the 1872 and 1873 reports on batting positions by Bob Tiemann. I think I have 1871 somewhere, for I vaguely recall that Levi Meyerle was batting 8th or 9th. For now I have 1872 and 1873. Here is a summary for the eight HOM members who were active, four in Group 3 and four more in Group 4.
The table uses abbreviated city names rather than club names where city is unambiguous.

See .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) at Baseball Fever.
   155. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 04:55 AM (#2704056)
See Batting Positions, some early data at Baseball Fever.
   156. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 04:57 AM (#2704057)
See Batting Positions, some early data at Baseball Fever.

This one should work.
Please delete 152,153,155 if that is easy to do.
   157. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 09:09 PM (#2704296)
Notes on International/ National AssociationA 1877-1880
key NL : IA/NA

Number of teams
1877 8 : 7
1878 6 : 13
1879 6 : 9
1880 8 : 4 (Washington Nationals and one or two others)

Typical number of league games played
1877 60 : 20 (five at 19-22, one 16, one 10; complete would have been 24 = 6 @ 4)
1878 60 : 40 (ten at 37-46, three others 30, 26, 19; perhaps complete would have been 48 = 12 @ 4)
1879 84 : 48 (six at 45-51 games, three at 32, 31, 23)
1880 84 : 48 for the Nationals (11 + 16 + 21) but only 20, 24, 24 for the others

Runs scored per team game
1877 5.67 : 3.80 (wow)
1878 5.17 : 4.25
1879 5.31 : 4.58
1880 4.69 : 5.01

Batting average (NL, leagueH/leagueAB; IA/NA, median team BA)
1877 .271 : .181 (wow)
1878 .259 : .219
1879 .255 : .244
1880 .245 : .239, .226, .215, .194 (Nationals .239)

This data needs computer analysis. More data-gathering and -checking will be helpful but much can be done with what we have along traditional lines.
Runs allowed seems to differ more than runs scored. In particular, high runs allowed seems to be a better marker of the weakest teams than low runs scored. Pitchers may be the lynchpins.
Palmer park factors must differ more than within the NL, based on ballpark conditions, "team" pitching quality (often one pitcher), and numbers of games played against the dropout teams (usually the weakest on the field).

For example of some points, in 1877 the Live Oaks of Lynn MA played only 10 of 20 games, unequally distributed 0 1 2 3 4 0 in final standings order. The Live Oaks were very weak both at bat and on the field, scoring 1.6 and allowing 7.1 in this 3.8-run league. Lynn pitcher and original league president Candy Cummings was done. At the other end of the spectrum (standings, age, or quality), the teams led by pitchers Fred Goldsmith and Jim Galvin allowed only 2.45 and 2.39 runs per game.

Because the number of team games played is relatively low and the year-on turnover in cities high, the standard errors in park factors of any ype will be relatively high, even with full accounting for the imbalance in games played. But I believe it is crucial and will be illuminating.

IA 1877 is not an important league-season for Hall of Merit members and it seems to be the extreme of four in variability but I wouldn't rely much on raw batting or pitching data from any of them. On the other hand, I have no reason to doubt the data on playing time and fielding position, and some rank on team may be valuable.

I don't have time for much, so it is good that little analysis is yet appropriate.
Only Kelly in SD requested a copy and I didn't get it together in time for him this weekend.
   158. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 10:15 PM (#2704316)
1878
Barnes, London. 42 games at 2B, .235, 25 runs

Glasscock, Pittsburgh. 26 games at 3B, .204, 19 runs

Gore, Hartford. 3 games at OF, .077, 1 run

Richardson, Utica. 40 games at OF-2B-C, .324, 30 runs
second in batting among 20-game players, fourth for 10+ games
ties for fifth in runs, for second in hits, for first in doubles, for first in extra bases
John O'Rourke, brother of Jim, is the only batter with better raw statistics. The both played for good teams but they both faced all three teams that allowed 2.xx runs per game (call them Goldsmith, Galvin, and Jim McCormick).

1879

Pike, Springfield plus. 53 games at CF-2B, .356, 49 runs
looks like a dominating batter by this shallow glance

Bennett, Worcester. 42 games at CF-C, .328, 39 runs
Fourth on team in batting (team average .289, 1st in league), those three teammates and seven other regular players scored more than one run per game.
MLB career catcher A.J. Doc Bushong played 46 games at C-CF. In the NL next season they split the catching Bennett 46:40 Bushong. In 1881-82 they were nearly everyday catchers for Detroit and Worcester respectively.

Stovey, New Bedford. 47 games at 1B-P, .288, 40 runs
one of four batters .282-.298, one of two who scored almost once per game

1880
Pike, Albany plus. 25 games, .210, 17 runs
still hitting hard or running well --5 triples, 1 homerun; second and tie first behind Dan Brouthers 6 and 1-- but teammate Tim Keefe roughly matches his batting rates. Keefe hit the league's other home run :) with .213 and 10 runs in 18 games. With teammate Bill Tobin they were the four players with 1.5 bases per hit.

--
Clubs admitted to the National League, 1877-1881
1877 (drop two) none
1878 (drop three) Providence, Indianapolis, Milwaukee
1879 (drop two) Cleveland, Buffalo, Syracuse, Troy
1880 (drop one) Worcester
1881 (drop one) Detroit

Only three (bold) of the eight clubs were championship members of the Association, the only ones whose playing statistics have been compiled. In the National League, Syracuse finished 7th and out, Worcester 5-8-8, Buffalo 3-7-3-3-5-3-7.
   159. Paul Wendt Posted: March 02, 2008 at 10:27 PM (#2704323)
Frank Vaccaro's game logs (All Games Baseball) include the 1877 League Alliance, "a loose federation of teams - not a pennant race".
They played against NL and IA teams and others. Vaccaro shows ten teams active Apr/May to Sep/Oct plus one in Memphis April to July. Memphis played April home games against NL St Louis (6) and Louisville (2), then about twenty away from home.
While compiling game logs Vaccaro noted common lineups for the Alliance teams, 99 player-positions. They include four of ours.
- Bennett, Milwaukee, 3, C
- Pearce, Providence, 3, SS
- Glasscock, Buffalo, 6, 3B
- Richardson, Binghamton, 3, CF

From the 1877 Alliance,
three clubs Indianapolis, Milwaukee, and Providence joined the NL 1878 (Milw with Bennett, Prov without Pearce);
cities if not clubs Buffalo, Syracuse, Binghamton, and Lowell joined IA 1878 (Buff and Bing without Glasscock and Richardson);
the four others were Memphis, Philadelphia (same old Athletics), Auburn NY, and Fall River MA.
   160. ron399 Posted: March 16, 2008 at 05:31 AM (#2713571)
Where does Bobby Veach fit in with the hall of merit? Seems to be an underated and forgotten star from the past.
   161. Howie Menckel Posted: March 16, 2008 at 05:50 AM (#2713573)
Veach continues to get votes to this day.
Never got close to election, but he got 2 top-15 votes in the 2008 voting.
   162. Howie Menckel Posted: March 22, 2008 at 03:37 PM (#2717574)
(non-sequitir alert, just thought this was fun)

nice to have two HOMers turning that 6-4-3 DP, isn't it?
(must play at least half of team's games at one of these positions to qualify. if that is achieved, but a 2nd position has at least half as many games, it's linked with a dash. If at least 25 G, but fewer than half the main positon, the 2nd position is in parentheses)

ALL-TIME 2B-SS DOUBLE PLAY COMBOS
1871 Boston NL - 2B-SS Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
1872 Boston NL - 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
1873 Boston NL - 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
1874 Boston NL - 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright
1875 Boston NL - 2B Ross Barnes, SS George Wright

1877 Boston NL - 2B George Wright, SS-3B Ezra Sutton

1899 St. Louis NL - 2B Cupid Childs, SS-3B Bobby Wallace
.....................

1938 Boston AL - 2B Bobby Doerr and SS Joe Cronin
1939 Boston AL - 2B Bobby Doerr and SS Joe Cronin
1940 Boston AL - 2B Bobby Doerr and SS Joe Cronin
1941 Boston AL - 2B Bobby Doerr and SS Joe Cronin

1942 Brooklyn NL - 2B Billy Herman and SS Pee Wee Reese

1943 Brooklyn NL - 2B(3B) Billy Herman and SS(3B) Arky Vaughan

1947 Cleveland AL - 2B Joe Gordon and SS Lou Boudreau
1948 Cleveland AL - 2B Joe Gordon and SS Lou Boudreau
1949 Cleveland AL - 2B Joe Gordon and SS(3B) Lou Boudreau

1948 Brooklyn NL - 2B(1B) Jackie Robinson and SS Pee Wee Reese
1949 Brooklyn NL - 2B Jackie Robinson and SS Pee Wee Reese
1950 Brooklyn NL - 2B Jackie Robinson and SS Pee Wee Reese
1951 Brooklyn NL - 2B Jackie Robinson and SS Pee Wee Reese
1952 Brooklyn NL - 2B Jackie Robinson and SS Pee Wee Reese

1978 Milwaukee AL - 2B(SS) Paul Molitor and SS Robin Yount
1979 Milwaukee AL - 2B Paul Molitor and SS Robin Yount
1980 Milwaukee AL - 2B Paul Molitor and SS Robin Yount

1978 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1979 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1980 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1981 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1982 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1983 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1984 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1985 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1986 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1987 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1988 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1989 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1990 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
1991 Detroit AL - 2B Lou Whitaker and SS Alan Trammell
   163. Paul Wendt Posted: August 25, 2008 at 11:40 PM (#2915880)
The National Baseball Hall of Fame has announced the ballot for the new veterans committee meets December 7.
[url=http://web.baseballhalloffame.org/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080825&content_id=9206&vkey=hof_pr]NBHOFM Press Release 3:48 pm
10 Finalists Named for HOF Consideration
[/url]

Six 1930s/40s guys without Stan Hack
- Wes Ferrell, Joe Gordon, Allie Reynolds, Vern Stephens, Mickey Vernon, Bucky Walters
and perhaps the four most commonly named omissions from that time
- Deacon White, Bill Dahlen, Sherry Magee, Carl Mays

It does seem like a typo! They have nominated the Deacon after three times making little brother Will White the earliest of 200 nominees, attracting much ridicule. (Once they elected the wrong Wright, now they nominated the wrong White!)

For those of you not scoring at home, here are the earliest players on the three recent VC ballots, each time among about 25 second-stage nominees.

2003: Mays, Ken Williams, Bob Meusel
2005: Joe Wood, Mays
2007: Mays, Lefty O'Doul

White, Dahlen, and Magee precede all of them.

This is progress, largely due to the change in structure. This same nominating committee (the Historical Oversight Committee) previously handled only the first of two nominating stages (200, cut to about 25 by others). They repeated 174 players on all three occasions, including 22 with debuts before Joe Wood 1908 (the earliest who once made the ballot) and 13 with debuts before Bill Dahlen 1891.
   164. Paul Wendt Posted: August 25, 2008 at 11:42 PM (#2915884)
   165. OCF Posted: August 26, 2008 at 12:01 AM (#2915905)
Did Allie Reynolds ever get a vote for the HoM? I don't see him on the 1960 ballot tally, and that's when he would have been eligible. I have Reynolds at a 153-124 equivalent record, which puts him in the company of the likes of Sam McDowell, Wilbur Wood, Mike Cuellar, Claude Osteen.

I think Reynolds shouldn't be there, but worse pitchers have been elected to the HoF, and he's the weakest name on the list. Stephens, Vernon, Mays, and Walters have all gotten votes on HoM ballots. None of them would lower the standards of the HoM. This is really a pretty good list.
   166. sunnyday2 Posted: August 26, 2008 at 01:37 AM (#2916028)
This has the potential to go seriously wrong. It says here they're going to elect Reynolds and Mickey Vernon.
   167. Paul Wendt Posted: August 26, 2008 at 01:44 PM (#2916279)
[I posted this to a Baseball-Fever forum yesterday evening, soon after I posted approximately #163 to both fora. Or is it flauna?]
[Someone reported their HOM status --rank pre-1943 or in 2008 election-- but omitted Stephens and Vernon.]
That Hall of Merit special project ranked the 21 HOM members who are eligible for this pre-1943 veterans committee meeting. Walters, Mays, Reynolds, and also Vern Stephens, Mickey Vernon from the new V.C. slate were not ranked because they are not in the HOM. Instead they are eligible for the annual HOM election where 101 players who retired before 2003 earned points last winter.

The Hall of Merit elects three so Bucky Walters, 5th in that election, is #2 among the incumbents who will be eligible for 2009. The other nominees stand Mays #37, Stephens #42, Vernon #93, Reynolds no points (not listed in the top 15 by any of the 50 HOM voters).

Hall of Merit top page (for the annual election, come back in November)

--
Reynolds scored 20% support in the 2003 v.c. election with 80-some voters, all members of the Hall of Fame and all honored baseball writers and broadcasters. Hereafter a small committee will meet in person.

Here are the recent V.C. results for pre-1943 players
2003
19 Joe Gordon (7th of 26 candidates) [19 or 81 votes, 23%]
17 Marty Marion
16 Carl Mays
16 Allie Reynolds
12 Wes Ferrell
8 Ken Williams
6 Bob Meusel

2005
16 Marion (10th of 25)
14 Gordon
12 Mays
9 Ferrell
2 Joe Wood (earliest player on any of the three ballots)

2007
15 Lefty O'Doul (9th of 27)
14 Mickey Vernon
12 Cecil Travis
11 Marion
10 Gordon
7 Ferrell
6 Mays

16 votes is 20%, which is enough support that they should have returned Reynolds to the ballot with Marty Marion, Gordon, Mays, and Ferrell. That's all I have to say in his favor as a candidate!

From these incomplete results it is clear that aggregate support for these older candidates was gradually eroding with the arrival of newcomers such as Jim Kaat (reaped 43 and 52 votes from 2005) and Luis Tiant (20 and 15 votes). [--and as they improved the subset of older candidates slightly]

Total votes cast: 433, 458, 488
Ballots cast: 81, 80, 82
Average votes cast: 5.35, 5.72, 5.95
   168. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: August 26, 2008 at 02:19 PM (#2916316)
We won't really know what to expect until we find out who's actually on the committee. Since they said it includes historians, I'm cautiously optimistic, at least as far as avoiding mistakes. My guess is they'll either elect 1)Dahlen or 2)nobody. But if they decide to emulate the executive's committee and pick half the group, I have no idea what they'll do.

They did pick the top 2 finishers in our Group 3 ballot (Dahlen and White). They took 3 of the 7 post-1900 players in that group (Magee, Gordon and Ferrell). And I can understand their passing on Groh, Sheckard and Keller - those cases are not at all obvious. I do think the Stan Hack omission is a strong oversight.

Of the non-HoMers included, among pre-1943 players on the 2008 ballot (not including Negro Leaguers), Walters ranked 1st, Mays 9th (15th if you include HoFers), Stephens 12th (19th), and Vernon 30th (46th). I'm a little surprised by that order, only because I feel like I see Stephens talked about a lot more than Mays. (Then again, Stephens is a lot closer to my ballot than Mays is as well.)

I'm not really surprised to see Vernon included, he had a very long career and tends to show up near the top of counting stat lists for first basemen. Reynolds has something of a starter/reliever combo pack that increases his visibility, plus being on the Yankee dynasty. I think both would be bad selections, but not the worst ever.

The best thing about this group is that they left out all of the guys with gaudy hitting stats from the 20s and 30s (except Ferrell). Even Vernon or Reynolds would be better picks than anybody from the Babe Herman bunch.

Just for the heck of it, here's the top 15 (non-HoFers) from the 2008 ballot:

1. Bucky Walters
2. Tommy Leach
3. Bob Johnson
4. Gavvy Cravath
5. Tommy Bridges
6. George Van Haltren
7. Bob Elliott
8. Larry Doyle
9. Carl Mays
10. Ned Williamson
11. Wally Schang
12. Vern Stephens
13. Johnny Pesky
14. Urban Shocker
15. Fred Dunlap
   169. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: August 26, 2008 at 02:29 PM (#2916324)
Paul, I cleaned up posts 152-153 . . . 152 looks like it came out OK, 153 I'm not so sure. Let me know what you were trying to do if you want I can take another crack at it . . .
   170. Paul Wendt Posted: August 26, 2008 at 02:55 PM (#2916359)
Hi, Joe
Those whose were two trials with the same material. I posted it at baseball-fever where I can format and edit myself. Use the link in #156.
(In #154 and #155 the link is mailto: rather than http: )

For example,
White Cle 4 3 Bos 5
22* 18 4 60* 60*


means that White played all 22 games in Cleveland [1872], 18 games batting 4 and 4 games batting 3; he played all 60 games in Boston [1873], all 60 games batting 5.

The layout is clear at baseball-fever. If the link in #154 were corrected (mailto ==> http) then everything in 152-53 and 155-56 would be redundant.
   171. rawagman Posted: August 26, 2008 at 06:20 PM (#2916602)
New Veteran's Committee ballot is out. Maybe we should put out a thread to pool our resources and push for some new (old) blood for Cooperstown.
   172. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: August 26, 2008 at 08:40 PM (#2916768)
I just posted this on SABR-L, in response to a post about the new ballot:

Just to give a quick summary of how these players have faired in the Hall of Merit voting, at www.baseballthinkfactory.org/files/hall_of_merit.

Elected to the Hall of Merit (first election was 1898, for players retired before 1893).

Bill Dahlen (elected 1915, 1st year of eligibility)
Deacon White (1898, 1st year)
Sherry Magee (1926, 2nd year)
Joe Gordon (1976, 20th year)
Wes Ferrell (1964, 21st year)

In our 2008 Hall of Merit election (held last December):

Bucky Walters finished 5th (3 are elected each year now, he's a top candidate for election in 2009)
Carl Mays was 39th
Vern Stephens was 45th
Mickey Vernon was tied for 99th
Reynolds did not receive a vote.
*104 players received at least one vote from the 50 voters, who each vote for their top 15 candidates (in rank order). Players never lose eligibility.

In a poll taken earlier this year among players in the Hall of Merit eligible for this election, Dahlen ranked first, White second, Magee 12th, Gordon 14th and Ferrell was 20th.

The 22 HoMers who were eligible for this Veterans Committee election were on that ballot. The full rank order was 1. Dahlen, 2. White, 3. Paul Hines, 4. Jack Glasscock, 5. George Gore, 6. Joe Start, 7. Ezra Sutton, 8. Heinie Groh, 9. Hardy Richardson, 10. Bob Caruthers, 11. Charlie Bennett, 12. Magee, 13. Stan Hack, 14. Gordon, 15. Jimmy Sheckard, 16. Charlie Keller, 17. Harry Stovey, 18. Cupid 19. Childs, 20. Ferrell, 21. Charley Jones, 22. Pete Browning.

The Hall of Merit has a similar number of players (234) to the Hall of Fame (232, including the 4 HoF contributers we elected as players), but obviously we like our choices much more. We feel we were much more fair to the 19th Century, for one, which is especially relevant to the coming VC election. Our ballots are set up similar to an MVP ballot with a set number elected each year (has varied from 1 to 3 after electing 4 in our first election).

In our positional ranking of Hall of Merit players (still in progress, we have done C, 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, LF so far):

*Bill Dahlen ranked as the #6 SS of 25 ranked (George Davis was 5th and Robin Yount 7th);
*Deacon White was the #11 catcher of 20 ranked (Campanella was 10th and Louis Santop 12th); *Sherry Magee finished as the #11 LF of 21 ranked (Willie Stargell was 10th and Jimmy Sheckard 12th)
*Joe Gordon was the #16 2B of 21 ranked (Hardy Richardson was 15th and Bobby Doerr 17th).
*Wes Ferrell is one of 53 post-1892 starting pitchers we've elected, we have not ranked them yet.
   173. Paul Wendt Posted: August 27, 2008 at 01:33 PM (#2918395)
Good.
(somehow you have elected Clarence Childs twice with a split personality, Cupid and Fatty?)
   174. DanG Posted: August 27, 2008 at 05:41 PM (#2918715)
The Hall of Merit has a similar number of players (234) to the Hall of Fame (232, including the 4 HoF contributers we elected as players),

This should probably read something like this:

The Hall of Merit has the same number of players (234) as the Hall of Fame (the 199 MLB players; the 29 Black Baseball players; plus 3 HoF managers (Griffith, Foster, McGraw) and 3 HoF "pioneers" (G. Wright, Spalding, Cummings) whom we consider as players).
   175. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: August 27, 2008 at 07:12 PM (#2918871)
But we haven't elected McGraw and Cummings and the Hall doesn't consider them as players either, so I didn't really think that worked . . .
   176. DanG Posted: August 27, 2008 at 08:44 PM (#2919009)
we haven't elected McGraw and Cummings and the Hall doesn't consider them as players either

It doesn't matter. The HoM is considering them as players. In explaining that the HoM number is equal to the HOF number of players, it's good to show that our count includes player who could have been elected to the HOF even if they had no other contribution.
   177. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: August 27, 2008 at 10:41 PM (#2919151)
I suppose, but IIRC we were even through 2002, which is what the goal was. Everything that's happened since is actually an example of how the Hall of Fame has gotten too tough compared to it's own historical standards in recent years.

Not that I wanted to get into all of that there.
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