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

Wednesday, July 10, 2002

Shortstops

Here are the SS’s. Pebbly Jack Glasscock is by far the best candidate here. George Wright may have a case on peak value once we have some NA data. Ed McKean has a case he may get in before the next generation’s big guns start hitting the ballot.



224 - 28, 26, 26 - 106 - Tom Burns - 11.0 sea. - 153 batting - 71 fielding.
3B 48%, SS 44%, 2B 7%, LF 1%.
notes: 1880-1892. 5-year peak age 23-27. Played entire career for Chicago in the NL.

172 - 43, 34, 26 - 149 - Frank Fennelly - 6.5 sea. - 124 batting - 48 fielding.
SS 97%, 2B 1%, 3B 1%.
notes: 1884-90. 5-year peak age 24-28. Played entire career in AA.

360 - 37, 33, 31 - 143 - Jack Glasscock - 15.0 sea. - 232 batting - 128 fielding.
SS 92%, 2B 7%, 3B 1%.
notes: 1879-95. 5-year peak age 22-26. Played entire career in NL, except part of 1884 (38 of 110 G) in UA.

161 - 33, 28, 27 - 131 - Bill Gleason - 6.9 sea. - 122 batting - 39 fielding.
SS 100%.
notes: 1882-89. 5-year peak age 23-27. Played entire career in AA.

265 - 31, 30, 25 - 118 - Ed McKean - 12.0 sea. - 211 batting - 54 fielding.
SS 94%, LF 3%, 2B 2%, 1B 1%.
notes: 1887-1899. 5-year peak age 23-27. Played entire career in NL, except 1887-88 in AA, 18 and 30 WS (first two years of 5-year peak).

58 - 38, 9, 9 - 58 - Mike Moynahan - 1.8 sea. - 47 batting - 11 fielding.
SS 73%, LF 21%, 2B 3%, 3B 1%, RF 1%.
notes: 1880-81, 1883-84. Entire career from age 24-28. The big year (1881) was in the NL, 1880 also in NL, 1883 in AA.

123 - 30, 25, 21 - 95 - John Peters - 8.6 sea. - 78 batting - 45 fielding.
SS 88%, 2B 11%.
notes: 1874-1884. 5-year peak age 26-30. Played 1.9 seasons in NA, rest of career in NL, except 1882-84 in AA (21, 1, 0 WS respectively).

207 - 26, 26, 23 - 113 - Jack Rowe - 9.4 sea. - 163 batting - 44 fielding.
SS 54%, C 33%, LF 6%, RF 4%, 3B 2%, CF 1%.
notes: 1879-1890. 5-year peak from age 26-30. Played entire career in NL, except 1890 (PL), 9 WS.

30 - 21, 7, 2 - 30 - Phil Tomney - 1.8 sea. - 14 batting - 16 fielding.
SS 100%.
notes: 1888-90. Entire career from age 24-26. Played entire career in AA.

212 - 28, 28, 23 - 118 - Sam Wise - 9.8 sea. - 161 batting - 51 fielding.
SS 51%, 2B 35%, 1B 5%, 3B 5%, RF 3%, LF 1%.
notes: 1881-91, 1893. 5-year peak age 25-29. Played entire career in NL, except 1890 (PL), 17 WS and 1891 (AA), 14 WS.

117 - 39, 30, 22 - 112 - George Wright - 8.9 sea. - 73 batting - 44 fielding.
SS 89%, 2B 11%.
notes: 1871-82. 5-year peak age 28-32. Played 4.3 seasons in NA, rest of career in NL. Best years were in the NA, numbers above do not reflect this, so he cannot be accurately evaluated by WS at this point.

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: July 10, 2002 at 05:52 PM | 360 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. sunnyday2 Posted: October 20, 2005 at 01:16 AM (#1693624)
I'm not aware of a single important baseball player in New York who went to war. Baseball players at that time were "gentlemen" and gentlemen, sorry to say, didn't go to war. Working class boys and men went to war. (And when I said "sorry to say," I don't mean that gentlemen should go to war but rather that working stiffs shouldn't either.) Not to say anything about whether this is all morally right or wrong, but a "discount" off the accomplishments of 1861-64 versus before or after is not warranted, not as a "competitive" discount anyway.

My gggrandfather enlisted with the Wisconsin volunteers and spent four years in the Union Army. This was at the age of 41-45. But he didn't play baseball.

Pearce just by the by was 24 when the shelling of Fort Sumter took place, Joe Start 17, Harry Wright 35 and George Wright 23.
   102. Michael Bass Posted: October 20, 2005 at 04:22 AM (#1693932)
Noticed that you didn't mention Newshouser, instead. ;-)

Newhouser can work, too, but unlike Pearce, he didn't take a hardcore nosedive when the war was over. He was still perhaps the best pitcher in the game for a couple years afterwards. No one was mistaking Pearce for the greatest in the mid/late 60s.

As for his being the best in the late 50s...well...fine. I don't see why he's any more deserving of induction that, say, Creighton or whoever else was great from that time, too, though. I find the post-war period to be when baseball started to grow enough to be meaningful. Others may vary. Anyway, the election's done, and no one else from the 60s will probably ever receive another vote, so we should find more relavent Ferrell/Medwick/Ruffing arguments to brawl about. :)
   103. Kelly in SD Posted: October 20, 2005 at 07:11 AM (#1694013)
Not to keep picking at this but,
WARP sees Wallace as a significant star of the deadball era, due to his glove (6 seasons over 10 WARP, 6 more over 8). Win Shares sees him as an excellent glove, but does not give that enough weight to make him a consistent star (3 appearances in the top-32, plus 8 just-misses).

I was hoping someone else could tell me if I understand these BP numbers correctly regarding Wallace. From today's BP I found the following:
BRAR for career: 412
FRAR for career: 927
PRAR for career: 68

I assume this means that Wallace's career value breaks down: 29.2% batting / 65.8% fielding / 4.8% pitching. Not including the 3 years of pitching the totals are: 31.6% batting and 68. 2% fielding. In the Win Shares book the break down is: 58% batting / 33% fielding / 9% pitching. That is a serious difference of opinion on how to value a player's onfield contributions. Especially a good player with a long career. This is not Bill Bergen. That figure does not make sense to me.
Of the top 100 players in career win shares, only Bill Dahlen has a higher percentage of value in defense, 36.5%. Of the 172 players with over 300 win shares, the following people have a higher percentage of defensive value:
Rabbit Maranville 47%
Ozzie Smith 42.7%
Nellie Fox 36.7%
Gary Carter: 36.6%
Dahlen 36.5%
PeeWee Reese 35.3%
Gabby Hartnett 33.7%.
I checked 3 of the players on BP:
Ozzie - 32.5% bat / 67.5% field.
Maz - 19% bat / 81% field. (WS 48 / 52)
Rabbit - 18% bat / 82% field.
I don't think fielding is that valuable, I don't care how good you are.

I'll admit win shares may underestimate the value of fielding, but it does not underestimate it by 30% of a player's career value. Defense is just not that important. YMMV, IMHO.
   104. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 20, 2005 at 11:19 AM (#1694117)
Jim, I built a WS spreadsheet. We even used it to calc WS for a DM league we ran on 1924.

Drop me an email and I'll send it to you. It's fairly user friendly too, and I think we've worked all the bugs out (but if you find any, please let me know!).
   105. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 20, 2005 at 11:24 AM (#1694118)
"I don't see why he's any more deserving of induction that, say, Creighton or whoever else was great from that time, too, though"

Didn't Creighton pitch for like 2 years? Wasn't he dead by the time he was 21?

Pearce has a tad more career value . . .
   106. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 20, 2005 at 11:26 AM (#1694119)
Kelly, I think you are right - WARP seriously overrates SS defense in my opinion (and overrates 2B defense some). Win Shares underestimates it some.

I'd guess the right answer is probably somwhere in the middle.
   107. sunnyday2 Posted: October 20, 2005 at 12:26 PM (#1694147)
Well, I actually voted for Jim Creighton once and I got thoroughly bashed for it, so the Creighton comment was clearly meant to diminish Dickey, not build up Creighton. Still as of about 1876 Creighton was still probably the player with the greatest peak impact. He pitched 3 years, I think, not 2.

But still, as of 1870 Pearce clearly had the greatest career value of anybody. Arguably by 1876 that was still true as Joe Start had some down years in there. As a peak voter, I would probably argue for George Wright as the greatest career by 1876 but Pearce's career was almost twice as long.

The only way to say that Pearce's career was not dominating in terms of its total value over time is to say that he didn't play baseball, which is what some people are still saying.
   108. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: October 20, 2005 at 01:49 PM (#1694210)
That is for Bobby Wallace, a defensive stud at the position who wasn't a great hitter. Is it possible that WARP isn't saying that defense is that important but that the value of these players is so tied up in defense because a) they played good D, and b) they didn't play great O (though some like Carter did)?

How does this look for a guy Like Derek Jeter or Vern Stephens?
   109. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 20, 2005 at 01:57 PM (#1694217)
Newhouser can work, too, but unlike Pearce, he didn't take a hardcore nosedive when the war was over.

You're talking apples and oranges, Michael. Pearce had already ten seasons of dominance under his belt by the end of the Civil War. Besides, as Marc pointed out, how many ballplayers were involved in the fighting, anyway.

"I don't see why he's any more deserving of induction that, say, Creighton or whoever else was great from that time, too, though"

Didn't Creighton pitch for like 2 years? Wasn't he dead by the time he was 21?

Pearce has a tad more career value . . .


You think, Joe? :-) Obviously, the Pearce-Creighton comparison is a poor one.
   110. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 20, 2005 at 02:59 PM (#1694324)
Then again, WARP shows Barry Bonds with 1628 BRAR and 333 FRAR, which means that fielding accounts for 17% of Bonds's RAR.

Does anyone in the group think that's a credible percentage for a monster-hitting left fielder?

Here's a list of some of the major post-1930 LF candidates and the percentage of their value (BRAR + FRAR) that their bpro card ascribes to fielding.

NAME           %VALUE IN FRAR
-----------------------------
Augie Galan      34%
Roy White        33%
George Foster    33%
Luis Gonzalez    29%
Joe Medwick      29%
Billy Williams   28%
Bob Johnson      27%
Jim Rice         26%
Yaz              26%
Minnie Minoso    25%
Tim Raines       24%
Gary Matthews    23%
Rickey Henderson 21%
Stan Musial      21%
Lou Brock        20%
Kevin Mitchell   20%
Albert Belle     18%
Brian Giles      18%
Willie Stargell  15%
Ted Williams     14% 
Don Baylor       13%
Ralph Kiner      12%
Frank Howard     11%
Greg Luzinski     3%


I don't think these values are reasonable. Don Baylor, a longtime DH, netting 13% of his value from fielding? Not likely. I think it's more likely that these percentages are roughly double what they ought to be, probably because of the oft-mentioned too-low replacement value.

Which then raises the question: how bad are the fielding distortions at other positions? And do the distortions at this position create an amplifying or dampening effect on other positions?
   111. Guapo Posted: October 20, 2005 at 03:12 PM (#1694349)
George Foster 33%


OK, THAT i'm not buying.
   112. Michael Bass Posted: October 20, 2005 at 06:21 PM (#1694890)
Pearce had already ten seasons of dominance under his belt by the end of the Civil War. Besides, as Marc pointed out, how many ballplayers were involved in the fighting, anyway.

If your argument is that none of the lower classes were playing baseball, so the war didn't affect it, then it only adds to my inclination to say early 60s and before baseball was played by so few that that era should not be seriously considered as the meat of an inducted player's argument. Note: I have no issue with adding career bulk to guys, such as Start, who were superstars in the late 60s when the game was clearly growing, both in geography and class. But inducting a player due largely to his supposed peak that ended while baseball was only being played, basically, by a few upper class guys in NYC is the equivalent of inducting whoever dominated the first peach basket games in Springfield, MA to the basketball HOM.

I mean, I get the pennant is a pennant argument and all, but this really takes it too far, and I stand by my comment from long ago that if Pearce is in, then there has to be someone else other than Start from the early 60s who is at least in the consideration set, if you truly believe a pennant is a pennant.

(Oh...for the record, the Creighton comment wasn't a dig at you, Marc; had no idea you'd voted for him, and sorry if it came off that way. He was just the first name that came to mind.)
   113. karlmagnus Posted: October 20, 2005 at 06:43 PM (#1694957)
Harry Wright is very much in my consideration set; only the stats showing Pearce as a marginally better hitter even in the late 1860s stop him being high on my ballot. The reality is that Pearce was by far the best SS of his time, indeed he more or less invented the position, and is thus a worthy HOMer, more so than a Wallace who came later and did not dominate.

If Creighton had lasted till say 26 instead of 21 (still dying before 1871) and remained dominant, I would have supported his election with great enthusiasm -- he's just the kind of guy who should be in.
   114. sunnyday2 Posted: October 20, 2005 at 07:22 PM (#1695046)
My take on Pearce and the pre-1866 era is different than Michael's. HoMers are extreme outliers on the right hand end of, or rather pretty much off, the Bell curve. That Pearce was out there on the edge is the point. What the rest of the curve looked like is secondary. His competition alone doesn't define who he was, just like Dobie Moore on the Wreckers or Buzz Arlett in the PCL. A diamond in the rough is still a diamond.
   115. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 20, 2005 at 08:15 PM (#1695164)
A diamond in the rough is still a diamond.

Exactly. Hal Newshouser was still a diamond, despite the crappier competition of 1944-45.

Thank God I don't have to debate this every week anymore. :-D

I mean, I get the pennant is a pennant argument and all, but this really takes it too far, and I stand by my comment from long ago that if Pearce is in, then there has to be someone else other than Start from the early 60s who is at least in the consideration set, if you truly believe a pennant is a pennant.

Who do you have in mind? Creighton didn't play long enough for me; H. Wright was good, but not really great; Bob Ferguson maybe (he looks like a close, but no cigar, guy); Al Reach (another Ferguson)?

The other thing is that Pearce had a combination of great praise and stats, while the others less so.

I did support Start, Spalding, Pike, and Barnes (less so) who had significant seasons pre-1871, so I certainly am not just picking out Pearce and ignoring everybody else from the amateur era. Start and Pike wouldn't have made my ballot without it, while Spalding and Barnes would have been lower down on my ballot if I had ignored it.
   116. DavidFoss Posted: October 20, 2005 at 08:51 PM (#1695242)
Thank God I don't have to debate this every week anymore. :-D

:-) Yeah, I was trying to be a bit diplomatic before as I didn't want to restart and old debate that didn't really matter anymore. I did vote for Pearce, but there were others at the time who shared Michael and Andrew's views who were fairly vocal at the time.

As for other candidates:
-- HWright was on ballots for a while, but the data showed that he spent a lot of time playing cricket instead of baseball. His pre-Cincy baseball record is not well documented and by the time the Red Stocking juggernaut was fully assembled he was one of the weaker batters on the team.
-- Reach was great from 67-69 and 71, but was just so-so before and fizzled out after that. Plus he played 2B which was more of a hitter position back then. Maybe half to two thirds of Barnes? (thinking out loud here)
-- Ferguson was more of a career guy with a couple of good seasons (one of which was in the NL).
-- Charlie Smith was an impressive 3B for the Atlantics before Ferguson (from 58-65) who took a year off after the war and wasn't the same afterwards. I could see him getting a few votes in the 1890s ballots if we knew about him, but I can't see him really competing with guys like McGraw or Rosen for votes these days.
-- McBride is an interesting case. He was a pitcher who could hit for a few years 65-68,70 who continued to pitch decently in the NA (his bat left him though). I could see him below Tommy Bond on a pitching depth chart, but only one person is left voting for Bond.
-- Asa Brainard was a decent pitcher in the 60s but was quite poor by the time of the NA.
-- Davy Force strung together 3-4 decent seasons for Washington Olympic from 67-70 which might pad his NA/NL numbers.

Lots of Atlantics and Athletics up there. There were other teams, but I couldn't find other players who strung several consecutive good seasons together. The documented games are fewer and the data less informative (just runs and outs) in the early 60s and before.
   117. Esteban Rivera Posted: October 20, 2005 at 09:07 PM (#1695284)
I'm pretty sure that there was an article in Total Baseball 7 that mentioned Dick McBride being in the army during the Civil War. I believe the article mentioned that he was given special permission to go back and pitch a championship game. The game was held up one day to give him time to get there, if I remember correctly.
   118. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 20, 2005 at 10:44 PM (#1695463)
-- Davy Force strung together 3-4 decent seasons for Washington Olympic from 67-70 which might pad his NA/NL numbers.

I had him very close at one time, but too many others have moved in front of him. He's in my top-fifty (barely), FWIW.
   119. sunnyday2 Posted: October 20, 2005 at 10:56 PM (#1695477)
To amplify my point about Pearce being an outlier...to me the size of the pool means that you elect a player or two, and that is what we've done. It doesn't mean that because there's a small pool, you don't elect anybody.

Beyond Pearce and Start, of the players who peaked before 1871 I think Reach is the next best and he was never in my top 25. So again, elect 2, then move on. But don't elect nobody because of a small pool.
   120. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 20, 2005 at 11:04 PM (#1695485)
It doesn't mean that because there's a small pool, you don't elect anybody.

Correct again, Marc. While I think there were fewer great players of that time, I don't think there was a total absence of them, either.
   121. KJOK Posted: October 20, 2005 at 11:28 PM (#1695510)
Not that I agree with all his choices, but I think this Clay Davenport article from 1998 is a must-read for thinking about HOM SS evaluation:

SS's and DFTs
   122. OCF Posted: October 21, 2005 at 01:09 AM (#1695618)
Not that I agree with all his choices, but ...

Intersting article. Clearly, his opinion of the "gloves" (Wallace, Maranville, Bancroft) is higher relative to the "bats" than our elections have shown. He does box himself into an odd corner by considering only value accumulated while playing SS - this shows up in his unusually low rating for George Davis. The issue for Davis isn't whether he was a great SS but whether he was a great baseball player (who happened to play more SS than anything else.) The HoM consensus puts him an eyelash ahead of Dahlen. (I voted Dahlen first, myself, but was in the minority.)
   123. Michael Bass Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:57 AM (#1695780)
His competition alone doesn't define who he was, just like Dobie Moore on the Wreckers or Buzz Arlett in the PCL.

Oh c'mon...Moore's a terrible example. He would only apply if he'd ripped the baseball like Babe Ruth in his Wreckers days, and then merely Lundy-good after leaving the service for more organized ball. And we all know he wouldn't be receiving a single vote. I also haven't noticed a landslide of support for Arlett either.

And the often-brought up Newhouser example does not work either. If he had been merely "good" from 1946-1949, as Pearce was at his comparable time, he would not be in the HOM.

(Oh, and in looking back, I always wondered why Davy Force never got a vote. My imaginary ballots always had him on them in the very early days.)
   124. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 21, 2005 at 02:42 PM (#1696209)
And the often-brought up Newhouser example does not work either. If he had been merely "good" from 1946-1949, as Pearce was at his comparable time, he would not be in the HOM.

1) How many players went to war between 1861-65? If you don't know (I don't), then you shouldn't be using this to beat up Pearce with until the facts are presented.

2) He was acknowledged before the war as the greatest shortstop ever. We're talking about five seasons of play there.

3) Pearce was ten-year veteran who didn't use a glove that whole time as of 1865. How is that remotely Newshouser who was 24 in 1945 and was never mentioned as one of the best prior to 1944? I wasn't comparing Pearce to Prince Hal as a player anyway, only to the fact that a player can still be great with lousy competition.

4) As I have pointed out, shortstops didn't last long during the 19th Century. That's a fact.

5) Pearce may have dominated his position somewhat due to the fact that he "invented" it, so he may not have been as great twenty years later. But we can say the same thing about Babe Ruth, who most certainly would not have dominated the 1950's as he did the 1920's. Those wins that both of them created were real and can't be thrown out into the garbage, however.
   125. OCF Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:00 PM (#1696385)
Hey, guys - isn't it about time to invoke the legal doctrine of stare decisis? Sure, I never voted for Pearce, and sure, various people around here occasionally mention that they think that someone - Thompson, Wallace, Carey - is a weak choice for us. But actually reigniting a closed debate? Not productive. This is a shorstops thread: the topics of conversation should be Stephens and Rizzuto and Reese on the horizon and Moore, Lundy, and Sewell in the backlog and did we overlook anyone, like maybe Bancroft?
   126. Michael Bass Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:00 PM (#1696386)
1) How many players went to war between 1861-65? If you don't know (I don't), then you shouldn't be using this to beat up Pearce with until the facts are presented.

I don't know either, but there are two possibilities here...

- A bunch of players went, so competition was watered down to nothing
- Very few players went

If the latter is the case because, as Marc says earlier, baseball was not being played by the working classes that ended up fighting in wars, then that essentially means the player pool was so small that IMO it is ludicrous to consider this HOM-level competition. It's the equivalent of the Springfield YMCA peach basket games. I mean...we're talking the upper class male population of NYC. How many people were playing baseball at this point on any level if this is true? 500 tops?

3) Pearce was ten-year veteran who didn't use a glove that whole time as of 1865. How is that remotely Newshouser who was 24 in 1945 and was never mentioned as one of the best prior to 1944? I wasn't comparing Pearce to Prince Hal as a player anyway, only to the fact that a player can still be great with lousy competition.

I'm not the one who keeps bringing up Newhouser. My only point is that without Hal's performance against certified A+ competition, he would not be in the HOM. By the time Pearce was playing against real competition, when the game expanded outside NYC, he was merely good at best. Yes, this may have coincided with age, almost certainly did to at least some degree. But it's an awfully big coincidence to drop from "best player in the game" to "third best player on his own team" basically overnight as soon as the game starts to expand, even with age taken into account.

Those wins that both of them created were real and can't be thrown out into the garbage, however.

Well, we're back to the old fight again, I guess, which is why this discussion is always pointless. I just don't see wins before 1866 or so as particularly meaningful. They are Dobie Moore's Wreckers days; they count in so far as to not punish players for having short careers, but you don't get inducted based on them, because no one was playing baseball at this time to any significant numbers. To me, this is "a pennant is a pennant" taken to absurd degrees, though a huge portion of the electorate disagrees with me, so I live.
   127. Paul Wendt Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:04 PM (#1696399)
Esteban Rivera Patron Status Posted: October 20, 2005 at 05:07 PM (#1695284)
I'm pretty sure that there was an article in Total Baseball 7 that mentioned Dick McBride being in the army during the Civil War. I believe the article mentioned that he was given special permission to go back and pitch a championship game. The game was held up one day to give him time to get there, if I remember correctly.

I wonder whether this is in Total Baseball 8. John Thorn was working on an article covering the greatest players by decade and McBride was one of his five(?) selections from the 1870s.

"gentlemen" is a myth. Many very early ballplayers were white collar workers whom no one today would call lower class and few would call working class. But USAmerican discourse on "class" is notoriously shallow. The Atlantic and Eckford and Henry Eckford clubs, at least, were working class clubs with rowdy supporters (but not lower class meaning low income or unskilled or unemployed), and the Atlantics were shunned by the Excelsiors after the breakdown of their series in August 1860.
   128. sunnyday2 Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:09 PM (#1696412)
I've decided that henceforth wins before 1947 shall not be counted.

Not.

But all such lines in the sand, even 1866, are abitrary.
   129. Paul Wendt Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:11 PM (#1696421)
For many a top ballplayer, I'm sure, if he contributed $300 in lieu of personal armed service, it was with help, probably from another base ball club member who didn't play on the first nine.
   130. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 21, 2005 at 04:14 PM (#1696427)
Hey, guys - isn't it about time to invoke the legal doctrine of stare decisis?

I was hoping that would be the case. :-(

To me, this is "a pennant is a pennant" taken to absurd degrees, though a huge portion of the electorate disagrees with me,

Thankfully. :-)
   131. jimd Posted: October 21, 2005 at 09:41 PM (#1697236)
WARP seriously overrates SS defense in my opinion

Earlier in this thread (post 86), I posted summary counts for the top-32 players in the league from 1896-1910, broken down by position groups (pitchers, hitting positions, glove positions). The final results are summarized above, more details are available in post 86.

Cumulative:
WiSh: Arm 181, Bat 201, Glove 099 (% 38, 42, 20)
WARP: Arm 100, Bat 163, Glove 177 (% 23, 37, 40)


One would expect roughly equal numbers for each group. WARP is light on pitchers, Win Shares is short on glove position players.

I have a major problem with the Win Shares 2:1 ratio between OF stars and IF stars. This indicates one of two things: either the managers of the time were overvaluing glovework and really should have gotten better hitters onto their infields so that there would have been more infield stars, or Win Shares is undervaluing glovework and should increase the number of FWS it hands out so there would be more infield stars during this era.

I think you can guess which alternative I think is more likely to be correct.
   132. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 21, 2005 at 09:44 PM (#1697246)
Jim, I got your email on the WS spreadsheet - but when I replied it came back undeliverable. I'm assuming that since you sent it through BTF, your BTF email is wrong.

My email is my name at gmail.com, just send me a direct one and I can reply to that . . .
   133. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 21, 2005 at 09:50 PM (#1697273)
BTW Jim, that post 86 was very interesting. But isn't it possible that the extreme players, the 24 best in the league could come more from group than the other? Just throwing it out there, not saying that it's true.
   134. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 21, 2005 at 09:54 PM (#1697290)
Actually, looking at the data above, would it be reasonable to say they are both correct on the about 40% for OF/1B and that the pitching and fielding should be 30/30? Also during the 19th century and early part of the 20th century, you could make an argument that 1B should be in with the infielders . . .
   135. jimd Posted: October 21, 2005 at 11:48 PM (#1697429)
An important part of the reason for the position groupings is to arrive at groups which one would expect to be of the same size as the pitchers group (assuming 4 starters). This makes them easy to compare. It also makes groups where one can look for patterns that are statistically significant (much harder to accumulate the data to do that with 8 independent positions).

1B still belongs with the OF during this period; while it's true that the OF outhit 1B, it's also true that 1B outhit the other IF positions, and that gap is larger that between 1b and the OF. On average, they hit like Dimaggio/Mantle era CF, but without the stars.

It's 24 for the 12 team league and 32 for the 16 team MLB. This sample represents 17-20% of the regulars, depending on how many pitchers you think are really regulars, so it's the top 2-3 at each position, if everything evens out.

It COULD be that 40/30 might be reasonable, but one would then expect that most of the worst regulars would also be from the "bat" group. That is, the "gloves" would be more clustered around average (have less variance), and this might happen because Win Shares gave them all similar grades on fielding, refusing to differentiate them. My impression is that this is not actually the case (worst regulars being "bats" that is).

Basically, there needs to be a reason why one position averages out to be more or less valuable than another over a "long enough" stretch of time. Pitchers: because they are so valuable defensively, they don't have to even make contact at the plate to be stars. Catchers: so debilitating that the best athletes are tracked to other positions to maximize career value to the organization, reducing the number of stars. Shortstop: tends to collect the very best athlete/hitters, those that could play any position (the "absence-of-offense" theory for estimating defensive value at a position may undervalue SS because of this factor).

Just my thoughts on a Friday evening. (Gone off on some tangents here.)
   136. jimd Posted: October 21, 2005 at 11:53 PM (#1697433)
much harder to accumulate

Should have said "much longer"
   137. Chris Cobb Posted: October 22, 2005 at 02:52 AM (#1697548)
I'm inclined to agree wth jimd's conclusion that win shares underrates infield defense during the pre-lively-ball era, but one factor that ought to be tracked against these top-32 counts is playing time. If the problem with WS is not that it undervalues defense but that its replacement level is too low, we would expect to see players at positions with higher numbers of games played being disproportionately represented, yes? And that is probably what we see, as outfielders tend to miss fewer games than infielders (esp. if catchers are in the glove pool!). To what extent is playing time a contributing factor to the phenomenon jimd has identified?

It would be good to look at top players by rate, with, say, an 80 game minimum threshold. Pitchers couldn't be readily compared to position players this way, but it would be useful to see if how much, if at all, infielders are ahead or behind by rate in WARP and in WS.
   138. jimd Posted: October 24, 2005 at 04:32 PM (#1701442)
Chris brings up a good point about usage perhaps influencing these results.

I redid the OF/IF counts, removing 1B from the OF'ers and C from the IF'ers. There were 23 1B all-star appearances in Win Shares, and only 3(!) C appearances. Instead of being 201-99 in favor of the "bats", it's now 178-96 in favor of the OF'ers. Still statistically significant (at almost 5 standard deviations).

Now, did the OF'ers play a lot more games than the IF'ers?
I picked the center year of each 5-year span (1898, 1903, 1908) and examined the league leaders in BP's AdjGm's (something that I had readily available, sorted, etc.; it's BP's adjustment of GP to factor out partial fielding games at a position, which there isn't a lot of during this era anyway).

Year Tp-24 -GP - Tp-48 -GP - Tp-72 -GP (OF-IF)
1898 09-13 147 - 19-22 135 - 28-28 117
Year Tp-32 -GP - Tp-64 -GP - Tp-96 -GP
1903 17-11 136 - 28-24 125 - 40-40 106 (140G schedule)
1908 13-13 149 - 23-27 132 - 38-37 115
--------------------------------------------
Total 39-37 -GP - 70-73 -GP - 106-105

(Top-72/top-96 gets down close to where replacment level will kick in; it covers 75% of the "everyday regulars".)

I see no evidence here of a significant playing time bias favoring OF'ers over IF'ers. If others have alternative methodologies that aren't too time-consuming, I'll take a look with them too.
   139. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 18, 2007 at 05:43 PM (#2582489)
<cross-posting from 2006 ballot discussion thread>

I feel like the electorate is pretty divided on bats vs. gloves--you're either largely dismissive of positional value as a whole (which would apply to most WS voters) or you have a ballot stacked with left-spectrum position players (people who use my system, many BP voters, and just defense-oriented voters in general). Given how divided the backlog is, if the glove-friendly voters could manage to agree among themselves which of the shortstops are the most deserving, we could probably get one or two into the HoM, whereas if we continue to split our top glove votes among a variety of candidates, those spots will be taken by right-spectrum position players or pitchers whom we all agree are less Meritorious. This isn't a call for strategic voting or collusion--rather, it's a request for discussion within the glove-friendly contingent of the electorate to see if we can reach a semi-consensus ranking of players within the category.

If you have a shortstop on your ballot, could you please take the time to post saying why you think he is superior to the other backloggers at his position? I personally see Concepción, Pesky, Rizzuto, Campaneris, and Bancroft as all deserving and fairly closely bunched together in value--too close for my system to conclusively distinguish between them--so I'm wide open to arguments as to their relative Merit. I'm not so sympathetic to Maranville and Stephens.
   140. sunnyday2 Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:10 PM (#2582533)
And of course there is Dick Lundy who many old-timers thought was probably the #3 NeLer after Lloyd and Wells. We preferred Dobie Moore, or at least enough of us did, and maybe 4 NeL SS is just too much. Lundy of course has a pretty typical NeL resume--long career, low peak--which probably reflects our methods 55 percent and his own record 45 percent, but there it is. He IOW is not quite Maranville, maybe Concepcion where as Moore was Ernie Banks without the 1B years, another extreme peak candidate in the Rosen/Jennings mold.

Still it would be interesting to hear where you think Lundy fits.

Anyway my SS (and all) are mostly WS based and it takes a "big year" or two to show that the player in question was GREAT, sometime, somewhere, and therefore to get on my radar.

9. Pesky +7 WS per year vs. position median
14. Rizzuto +5 against an awesome cohort
19. Stephens +8 with no WWII discount on this particular measure
25. Lundy--actually very similar to Concepcion
28. Concepcion +5 against a truly woeful cohort
41. Bancroft
HM. Maranville and Aparicio--largely a bow toward contemporary opinions

Not yet PHoM

(12a. Trammell +10 but, like Concepcion, against one of the weakest position cohorts at any position at any time in ML history)
(32a. Sewell--if we hadn't over-represented his generation by as much as 50 percent--or IOW if he had played in an integrated league--I don't think he would have made it. The difference between he and Lundy is hardly worth mentioning though they derive their value quite differently. I have to acknowledge however that Sewell bears an uncomfortable similarity to Pesky, except [in my own defense] Pesky has that WS peak edge of 34-29. Pesky was great, Sewell was near-great on their best days.)

At one time my consideration set was 150 players. I narrowed it to about 50 about 8-9 years ago. SS who were in that larger set but no longer included Wills, Fregosi, Campaneris, Tinker, H. Long. Is Tony Fernandez eligible yet? If yes, he would at least be in this group if not a little higher up.

While I use WS as my primary tool, I give defense a good boost abd I thnk the results bear that out. Thus my relatively low regard for Trammell, a B- trailing even Vern Stephens.
   141. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:17 PM (#2582546)
I am extremely interested in Lundy, but I haven't seen any seasonal MLE's for him. Have they been done? Especially with the new HoF data?

Please recheck your numbers on Concepción; I'm telling you he's +10 not +5. I laid out my methodology in post #41 on his thread. And I would think you would love Fregosi--an offense-first SS who blew away everyone else at his position for 8 straight years. You should definitely include him in your consideration set.
   142. TomH Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:19 PM (#2582549)
well, this is the shortstop thread and I'm about to write about a not-SS, but it seems the best place to address Dan's post:

I agree with the main premise. Lots o' glove candidates, too close to converge on one. Probably why Guiliani can win the GOP nomination if 5 other social conservatives fend each other off.

My response is this: ONE middle infield candidate distinguishes himself. Good bat and good glove. Good enough that he was thought of during his career as a superstar. Long career. And, to boot, he has very little competition at his position on our ballots, even though his position, second base, is UNDERrepresented in the HoM.

We've elected LOTS of Negro League stars from the 20s/30s. But precious few before 1910.

Why only 5 votes for Bill Monroe last ballot? Any of you who came on after we got past 1910 or so, have you looked at his thread closely? Yes, it's a bit fuzzy getting a good handle on guys from his league in his era. But given the known warts of our backlog, it's easy to vote for him. MLEs & anecdotes point IMHO toward Monroe's electability.
   143. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:21 PM (#2582552)
I can't assess him without seasonal MLE's...
   144. sunnyday2 Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:23 PM (#2582553)
There are Lundy MLEs on his thread, and there was at least discussion if not new MLEs after the HoF data came out. His case was really trashed based on a low BB rate and the HoF data suggested that a higher rate was more likely. Yet the electorate had already made up its mind about Dick and so I don't think the new data had any impact on the voting. He moved up on my ballot but only about half-way, from 50ish to 25ish. He is one guy we may have missed on. I like him a lot better than Mackey or Trouppe, among the gloves.
   145. sunnyday2 Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:28 PM (#2582558)
Monroe is about #32 on (off) my ballot. I like Bill. What hurt Bill, however, was 1) we don't have much in the way of statistical data of any kind, 2) what little we had looked a lot like the little bit of data we had for Frank Grant, 3) nobody was sure from the data whether either one of them was really a HoMer, and 4) we elected Grant. It seems like we were reluctant to go out on the same limb twice. And I might add, further, that the tiny little bit of data we have for Sol White also looks a lot the same. So even after electing Grant, we still had two similar guys about whom we know relatively little. That can't have helped Monroe a whole lot either. And then shortly after we elected Grant, we got a big influx of NeLers for whom we had some data. It was tough to go back and choose Monroe against all the NeLers we actually elected. It was much easier to argue for the newer guys. Now in the 21st century his case is just too tenuous. Picking a guy with little statistical data NOW just seems all the more far-fetched. Like I say, he's #32 on my ballot, so I'm not saying it IS far-fetched, just that it must seem that way to a lot of people.
   146. Esteban Rivera Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:35 PM (#2582565)
I would also add Pedro Cepeda and possibly Silvio Garcia to the shortstop candidates list.
   147. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 18, 2007 at 06:37 PM (#2582569)
There are no seasonal MLE's for Lundy on his thread, which are what I need. Nor for Monroe.
   148. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 18, 2007 at 07:13 PM (#2582610)
Dan, be a big boy and go to the Links to NgL Stars area off the Important Links link on the front HOM page. There's one for Lundy and one for Monroe with plenty of discussion and some numbers.

I can't assess him without seasonal MLE's...

I suspect this is a constitutional breach. You must assess him with or sans the MLEs.
   149. sunnyday2 Posted: October 18, 2007 at 07:21 PM (#2582622)
Yeah, Lundy's MLEs are first cut post #12-13, then second cut #51-52, and some more work in #95 I think it is, though not full MLEs.
   150. andrew siegel Posted: October 18, 2007 at 07:50 PM (#2582662)
I think we blew off Lundy too early. Basically, our thinking was "his projected OPS+ was 94" and "we're never going to elect anyone with an OPS+ of 94."

It turns out, however, that our walk rate data was probably a bit on the low side, so his OPS+ is probably going to end up somewhere around 98-100. Add to that fact the negro league carrer OPS numbers are dragged down by additional playing time below major league replacement level and he might well have had an OPS+ slightly on the north side of 100.

Six months ago, I would have said "so what?" But--as we get to the bottom of our lists and as people like Dan push us to better take into account fielding and competition considerations--a bunch of SS's with similar offensive profiles are moving up our backlog. Since the subjective reports have Lundy as an all-time great defender, I think he is definitely right in the mix with (and very similar to) Bancroft, Rizutto, and Concepcion.
   151. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 18, 2007 at 10:32 PM (#2582955)
FWIW, here are my charts on the main MLB backloggers at the position...

The usual glossary. All numbers are adjusted for standard deviation. SFrac is the percentage of the season played (compared to a player with league average PA/G in 162 games). BTWAA is batting wins above average, BRWA is baserunning wins above average, FWAA is fielding wins above average, Replc is wins above average a replacement player at the same position would have accumulated in the same playing time, and WARP is the first three minus the fourth (wins above replacement). Note that Rep is 0.6 wins lower in the AL than in the NL to account for the DH post 1973. All seasons are straight line adjusted to 162 games. Your mileage on war credit and deductions may vary. aTTL (where included) is career totals excluding sub-replacement seasons. Sorry for the goofy formatting, but the PRE tag doesn't seem to be able to handle consecutive whitespaces anymore.

David Concepción

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1970 00.43 
-0.90 +0.2 -0.3 -1.60 +0.6
1971 00.51 
-2.70 +0.1 -0.4 -2.00 -0.9
1972 00.64 
-2.20 +0.4 +0.4 -2.40 +0.9
1973 00.52 
+0.90 +0.4 +0.7 -2.00 +3.9
1974 00.95 
+0.70 +0.6 +1.6 -3.60 +6.5
1975 00.81 
-0.80 +0.4 +1.9 -3.00 +4.6
1976 00.94 
+1.00 -0.1 +2.0 -3.40 +6.3
1977 00.91 
-1.00 +0.4 +2.2 -3.30 +4.9
1978 00.93 
+1.50 +0.0 +0.9 -3.30 +5.7
1979 00.97 
+1.30 +0.3 +1.6 -3.50 +6.6
1980 00.98 
-1.60 +0.2 +0.7 -3.50 +2.8
1981 01.04 
+1.90 -0.3 +1.4 -3.80 +6.8
1982 00.92 
+0.10 -0.5 +1.6 -3.30 +4.5
1983 00.87 
-2.90 +0.0 +0.4 -3.20 +0.8
1984 00.88 
-1.20 -0.3 -0.8 -3.20 +0.9
1985 00.91 
-1.80 -0.6 -0.6 -3.30 +0.4
1986 00.50 
-1.00 +0.3 +0.0 -1.90 +1.2
1987 00.45 
+0.20 -0.2 +0.0 -0.80 +0.8
1988 00.32 
-1.60 +0.0 +0.1 -0.60 -1.0
TOTL 14.48 
-10.1 +1.3 13.4 -51.7 56.3
aTTL 13.65 
-05.8 +1.2 13.7 -49.1 58.2 


3-year peak: 19.9
7-year prime: 41.4
Career: 58.2

Dagoberto Campaneris

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1964 00.42 
-0.30 +0.2 -0.4 -1.40 +0.9
1965 00.94 
+1.10 +0.3 -1.3 -3.00 +3.1
1966 00.91 
+0.20 +0.9 -0.6 -3.20 +3.7
1967 00.97 
-0.30 +0.7 -0.8 -3.50 +3.1
1968 01.06 
+2.50 +0.6 +0.7 -3.90 +7.6
1969 00.86 
-1.30 +1.1 +0.1 -3.30 +3.2
1970 00.95 
+1.90 +0.6 +0.9 -3.70 +7.0
1971 00.91 
-1.20 +0.6 +0.3 -3.50 +3.3
1972 01.05 
-1.00 +1.1 +1.7 -3.90 +5.6
1973 00.97 
-1.30 +0.4 +1.7 -4.20 +5.0
1974 00.85 
+1.00 +0.4 +0.7 -3.70 +5.8
1975 00.84 
-0.30 +0.2 -0.2 -3.60 +3.3
1976 00.91 
+0.00 +0.5 +0.4 -3.80 +4.7
1977 00.89 
-1.10 +0.0 +1.6 -3.70 +4.2
1978 00.44 
-2.20 +0.3 -0.2 -1.80 -0.3
1979 00.40 
-1.50 -0.1 +0.4 -1.70 +0.5
1980 00.33 
-0.60 +0.0 -0.4 -1.40 +0.3
1981 00.20 
+0.00 +0.0 -0.6 -0.40 -0.2
1983 00.22 
+0.10 -0.4 -0.2 -0.60 +0.1
TOTL 14.12 
-04.3 +7.4 +3.8 -54.3 60.9
aTTL 13.48 
-02.1 +7.1 +4.6 -52.1 61.4 


3-year peak: 20.4
7-year prime: 39.9
Career: 61.4


Phil Rizzuto

(Note: During his crappy 1946, Rizzuto was recovering from a bout of malaria he contracted in the South Pacific.)

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1941 00.81 
+0.10 +0.2 +1.9 -2.60 +4.8
1942 00.93 
+0.80 +0.4 +2.3 -2.90 +6.5
WARx 00.87 
+0.28 +0.2 +1.7 -2.60 +4.8
WARx 00.87 
+0.28 +0.2 +1.7 -2.60 +4.8
WARx 00.87 
+0.28 +0.2 +1.7 -2.60 +4.8
1946 00.79 
-1.30 +0.1 +0.3 -2.30 +1.4
1947 00.94 
+0.80 +0.1 +2.2 -2.70 +5.9
1948 00.80 
-0.60 +0.0 +0.2 -2.30 +1.9
1949 01.04 
-0.50 +0.3 +1.1 -3.00 +3.9
1950 01.07 
+3.30 +0.1 +2.0 -3.20 +8.5
1951 00.91 
+0.10 +0.4 +1.3 -2.70 +4.5
1952 00.99 
+0.40 +0.3 +1.2 -3.00 +5.0
1953 00.75 
+1.10 +0.1 +0.3 -2.20 +3.6
1954 00.54 
-1.90 +0.0 +0.1 -1.70 -0.1
1955 00.26 
+0.10 +0.2 -0.4 -0.80 +0.6
1956 00.09 
-0.30 +0.1 +0.0 -0.30 +0.0
TOTL 12.53 
+02.9 +2.8 17.5 -37.6 60.8
aTTL 11.99 
+04.8 +2.8 17.4 -35.9 60.9 


3-year peak: 20.9
7-year prime: 40.2
Career: 60.9


Johnny Pesky

(Note: Pesky's 1941 in the minor leagues MLE's to about 6.5 WARP.)

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1942 01.03 
+2.50 +0.2 +1.8 -3.20 +7.7
WARx 01.05 
+2.10 +0.1 +0.9 -3.20 +6.2
WARx 01.05 
+2.10 +0.1 +0.9 -3.20 +6.2
WARx 01.05 
+2.10 +0.1 +0.9 -3.20 +6.2
1946 01.06 
+3.30 +0.1 +1.8 -3.10 +8.2
1947 01.09 
+2.20 +0.1 -0.5 -3.20 +5.0
1948 01.01 
+0.90 -0.1 +0.7 -1.40 +2.9
1949 01.07 
+1.30 +0.1 +0.7 -1.10 +3.2
1951 00.86 
+1.60 +0.1 -0.1 -2.60 +4.1
1952 00.46 
+0.00 -0.2 -0.9 -1.40 +0.3
1953 00.52 
+0.40 -0.2 -0.6 -1.20 +0.8
1954 00.29 
-0.60 +0.0 -0.2 -0.60 -0.1
TOTL 11.44 
+19.4 +0.5 +7.1 -28.9 55.5
aTTL 11.15 
+20.0 +0.5 +7.3 -28.3 55.6 


3-year peak: 22.1
7-year prime: 44.3
Career: 55.6


Dave Bancroft

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1915 01.04 
+1.30 -0.8 +0.3 -3.20 +4.0
1916 00.90 
-0.90 -0.1 +2.3 -2.70 +3.9
1917 00.84 
-0.10 +0.0 +1.5 -2.50 +4.0
1918 01.09 
+0.20 +0.0 +0.8 -3.20 +4.2
1919 00.66 
+0.40 +0.0 -0.2 -1.90 +2.0
1920 01.04 
+1.40 -0.1 +2.0 -3.00 +6.2
1921 01.07 
+2.60 +0.3 +1.0 -3.10 +7.0
1922 01.13 
+2.00 +0.1 +0.6 -3.30 +6.0
1923 00.78 
+1.40 +0.0 +0.6 -2.30 +4.3
1924 00.56 
+0.00 +0.0 -0.3 -1.70 +1.5
1925 00.84 
+2.30 +0.1 +1.6 -2.50 +6.5
1926 00.82 
+2.30 +0.0 -0.1 -2.40 +4.6
1927 00.66 
-0.80 +0.0 +0.2 -2.00 +1.3
1928 00.89 
-1.90 +0.0 +0.3 -2.70 +1.1
1929 00.59 
-01.3 +0.0 -0.3 -1.80 +0.2
TOTL 12.91 
+08.9 -0.5 10.3 -38.3 56.8 


3-year peak: 19.7
7-year prime: 38.8
Career: 56.8


Jim Fregosi

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1962 00.28 
+0.20 +0.0 +0.0 -0.90 +1.2
1963 00.94 
+1.60 +0.0 -0.5 -2.90 +4.0
1964 00.86 
+4.20 +0.2 +0.1 -2.80 +7.3
1965 01.00 
+2.30 +0.2 +0.1 -3.20 +5.8
1966 01.03 
+1.70 +0.2 +1.0 -3.60 +6.4
1967 00.97 
+2.60 +0.1 -0.6 -3.50 +5.6
1968 01.04 
+1.20 +0.2 -0.9 -3.80 +4.3
1969 01.00 
+2.20 +0.3 +0.0 -3.90 +6.3
1970 01.00 
+3.30 +0.0 +0.3 -3.80 +7.5
1971 00.59 
+0.20 +0.0 -0.7 -2.30 +1.8
1972 00.59 
-0.20 -0.1 -0.1 -0.80 +0.4
1973 00.46 
+0.10 -0.1 -0.8 -0.90 +0.1
1974 00.37 
+0.30 +0.0 +0.1 -0.20 +0.6
1975 00.32 
+0.30 -0.1 -0.1 -0.20 +0.3
1976 00.23 
+0.00 +0.1 -0.1 -0.20 +0.2
1977 00.15 
+0.50 +0.1 -0.1 -0.00 +0.6
TOTL 10.83 
+20.5 +1.1 -2.3 -33.0 52.4 


3-year peak: 21.2
7-year prime: 43.2
Career: 52.4


Walter James Vincent Maranville

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1912 00.15 
-0.60 +0.0 -0.1 -0.40 -0.3
1913 01.02 
-0.80 +0.1 +0.7 -2.90 +2.8
1914 01.02 
-0.50 +0.1 +3.1 -2.90 +5.7
1915 00.90 
+0.10 +0.1 +1.7 -2.70 +4.7
1916 01.06 
+0.00 +0.3 +1.9 -3.10 +5.4
1917 00.97 
+1.30 +0.3 +1.1 -2.90 +5.5
WARx 00.97 
+0.40 +0.2 +1.1 -2.80 +4.6
1919 00.93 
+1.30 +0.0 +0.7 -2.70 +4.7
1920 00.82 
+0.00 +0.1 +0.0 -2.40 +2.4
1921 01.05 
-0.30 +0.4 +1.9 -3.00 +5.0
1922 01.13 
-0.30 +0.3 +1.6 -3.30 +4.8
1923 00.96 
-1.50 +0.0 +1.4 -2.80 +2.7
1924 00.99 
-1.00 +0.0 +1.0 -1.90 +2.0
1925 00.46 
-1.60 +0.0 -0.3 -1.40 -0.6
1926 00.41 
-0.90 +0.1 +0.1 -1.20 +0.5
1928 00.63 
-1.40 +0.0 +1.3 -1.90 +1.8
1929 00.93 
-1.00 +0.1 +1.7 -2.90 +3.7
1930 00.92 
-1.40 +0.1 +0.7 -2.70 +2.0
1931 00.96 
-1.10 +0.1 -1.7 -2.80 +0.0
1932 00.95 
-2.70 +0.0 +0.9 -2.00 +0.1
1933 00.81 
-2.60 +0.0 -1.0 -1.80 -1.8
TOTL 18.04 
-14.6 +2.3 17.8 -50.5 55.7
aTTL 16.62 
-09.8 +2.3 19.2 -46.9 58.4 


3-year peak: 16.6
7-year prime: 35.8
Career: 58.4


Toby Harrah

(Note: These values do not exactly match the ones in my spreadsheet, because I have manually corrected them to account for Harrah's multi-position seasons.)

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1971 00.64 
-1.00 -0.1 -0.4 -2.50 +0.9
1972 00.66 
+0.60 +0.3 -0.9 -2.40 +2.4
1973 00.75 
-0.10 +0.3 -0.5 -2.50 +2.3
1974 00.93 
+1.20 -0.1 -0.3 -4.10 +4.8
1975 00.92 
+4.10 +0.0 +0.1 -3.60 +7.7
1976 01.01 
+1.50 +0.0 +0.1 -4.30 +5.9
1977 00.98 
+3.10 +0.8 -1.6 -2.00 +4.3
1978 00.80 
+0.50 +0.5 -1.0 -2.30 +2.3
1979 00.93 
+2.20 +0.2 -1.5 -2.30 +3.2
1980 00.98 
+1.50 +0.5 +0.5 -2.10 +4.6
1981 00.96 
+2.80 +1.0 -1.0 -2.00 +4.8
1982 01.02 
+3.90 +0.5 -0.6 -2.00 +5.8
1983 00.89 
+0.00 +0.0 +0.0 -1.80 +1.7
1984 00.44 
-0.60 +0.0 +0.1 -0.90 +0.4
1985 00.76 
+2.70 +0.4 -0.7 -1.80 +4.2
1986 00.49 
-0.70 +0.0 -0.9 -1.10 -0.5
TOTL 13.17 
+21.8 +4.2 -8.7 -37.6 54.9
aTTL 12.67 
+22.5 +4.2 -7.8 -36.5 55.4 


3-year peak: 19.4
7-year prime: 37.9
Career: 55.4

Luis Aparicio

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1956 00.86 
-1.80 +0.4 +0.3 -2.70 +1.6
1957 00.97 
-1.10 +0.5 +0.1 -3.00 +2.4
1958 00.93 
-0.90 +0.6 +1.6 -2.80 +4.1
1959 01.04 
-1.30 +0.7 +0.5 -3.20 +3.1
1960 01.00 
-0.80 +0.9 +1.8 -3.00 +4.9
1961 00.98 
-1.00 +0.6 +0.3 -3.00 +2.8
1962 00.90 
-2.50 +0.2 +1.2 -2.90 +1.8
1963 00.96 
-1.50 +0.8 +0.2 -3.00 +2.5
1964 00.93 
+0.00 +0.5 +0.5 -3.10 +4.2
1965 00.92 
-1.50 +0.4 +0.8 -3.00 +2.7
1966 01.05 
+0.20 +0.3 +1.4 -3.60 +5.4
1967 00.87 
-1.60 +0.4 -1.3 -3.10 +0.5
1968 01.00 
-0.30 +0.0 +1.3 -3.70 +4.7
1969 00.99 
+0.40 +0.5 +0.8 -3.80 +5.5
1970 00.90 
+1.70 +0.2 -0.1 -3.50 +5.2
1971 00.80 
-2.10 +0.0 -0.9 -3.10 +0.1
1972 00.74 
-0.40 -0.2 -1.1 -2.80 +1.1
1973 00.80 
-1.30 +0.4 +0.2 -3.50 +2.8
TOTL 16.64 
-15.8 +7.2 +7.6 -56.8 55.4 


3-year peak: 16.1
7-year prime: 34.0
Career: 55.4

Vern Stephens

Year SFrac BTWAA BRWA FWAA Replc WARP
1942 00.96 
+1.60 +0.0 -1.1 -3.00 +3.4
1943 00.87 
+2.80 +0.1 -1.6 -2.60 +3.9
1944 00.96 
+1.70 +0.0 +0.3 -2.90 +4.9
1945 00.98 
+2.40 +0.1 +0.0 -2.90 +5.4
1946 00.75 
+1.80 +0.0 +0.0 -2.20 +4.0
1947 00.97 
+1.80 +0.2 +1.4 -2.80 +6.2
1948 01.08 
+0.90 +0.2 +0.4 -3.10 +4.6
1949 01.08 
+3.40 +0.1 +0.4 -3.10 +6.9
1950 01.04 
+1.00 +0.1 +0.1 -3.10 +4.3
1951 00.63 
+0.70 +0.0 +1.0 -0.70 +2.3
1952 00.51 
+0.10 +0.0 +0.0 -1.60 +1.6
1953 00.50 
-0.50 +0.1 -0.3 -0.60 -0.2
1954 00.59 
+0.60 -0.2 +0.3 -0.70 +1.4
1955 00.11 
+0.10 +0.0 -0.1 -0.10 +0.2
TOTL 11.03 
+18.4 +0.7 +0.8 -29.4 48.9
aTTL 10.53 
+18.9 +0.6 +1.1 -28.8 49.1 


3-year peak: 18.5
7-year prime: 36.3
Career: 49.1
   152. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 18, 2007 at 10:33 PM (#2582958)
So, ranked by 3-year peak, we have: Pesky, Fregosi, Rizzuto, Campaneris, Concepción, Bancroft, Harrah, Stephens, Maranville, Aparicio

Ranked by 7-year prime, we have: Pesky, Fregosi, Concepción, Rizzuto, Campaneris, Bancroft, Harrah, Stephens, Maranville, Aparicio

Ranked by career, we have: Campaneris, Rizzuto, Maranville, Concepción, Bancroft, Pesky, Harrah, Aparicio, Fregosi, Stephens

I would thus break them down into the following groups and sub-groups.

Contenders

All-rounders: Peak, prime, and career

Campaneris: League-average hitter, plus fielder, historically great baserunner. Was the second-best player in the AL to Yastrzemski in 1968, and third behind Fregosi and Yastrzemski in 1970. Career rates dragged down by extended decline phase post-1977. Most career value of any of them, and two MVP-type seasons in a three-year span give him a Meritorious peak. Quite possibly the best of the lot.

Rizzuto: Slightly above average hitter, plus baserunner, one of the best gloves in the game's history. We all know about his 1950--it's by far the best single season of any player in the group. Had very little decline phase, but on the other hand he gets war credit, so his rates are probably reflective of his ability. A hair less career value than Campaneris had in much less playing time. In a dead heat with Campaneris on MLB value, I give the nod to Dagoberto thanks to league strength issues.

Concepción: Looks like a long-career candidate, but accumulated virtually no value outside of his outstanding 1973-82 prime, which is his calling card. During that stretch, he was a force: a well above league average hitter, plus baserunner, and God fielder. Third-best player in the league in 1976 and 1981. I know this is selective endpointing, but it has a nice ring to it: Every eligible player who has had more WARP2 over ten straight years is in the Hall of Merit. Voters who look at best-in-MLB-at-position-over-extended-period-of-time should fall all over him. No one year as big as Campaneris's '68 or certainly Rizzuto's '50, but a better prime. Tough league.

Peaksters

Pesky: Obviously, war credit is everything. His seasons immediately before and after the war were good enough to win an MVP in the vast majority of years, with OBP-heavy OPS+'s of 119 and 126, superlative defense, and great durability. His 1941 in the minors MLE's to a very high All-Star season, over 6 WARP2, not that I credit that but it strengthens his case for peak war credit. If anyone deserves it (besides Williams and Greenberg and the like), it's Pesky. I have him penciled in at 6.2 WARP2 a year--below his 1941 MLE and way below his '42 and '46, but better than anything he did thereafter. He played at an All-Star level in 1947, was a useful above-average player until 1950, and then was done. Even with the war credit, he didn't play long enough to deserve a look from the career voters. But if you're a pure peak or short prime voter, he should literally be your #1 backlogger. Charlie Keller voters should take note.

Fregosi: The Pesky for people who are stingy with war credit. Average with the glove, terrific with the bat, and a good baserunner for eight consecutive years. Should have been the AL MVP in 1970. Pure peak and short prime voters should really gravitate to him, as should best-at-position-over-period-of-time voters. An elite superstar until he was traded for Nolan Ryan, and that was that. Deserves to be dinged for the weak mid-1960s AL.

Pretenders

Bancroft: He's in my PHoM, with a very similar profile to the first tier all-rounders. The only thing holding him back is that the early 1920s NL was a very easy league to dominate. His 7-WARP seasons weren't quite as valuable when the likes of Rogers Hornsby were dropping 12's on the league left and right.

Maranville: Played forever, and deserves his reputation as an all-time defensive great. But a *lot* of that was hanging-around time, and he really has no peak or prime. I mean, none. One of the worst hitters of the group. He should only be in the consideration sets of career voters, and both Campaneris and Rizzuto have more career value than he does, with Concepción basically tied.

Harrah: As far as I'm concerned, he was the 1970s version of Derek Jeter--except that he got moved off SS when he should have, unlike Jeter who was permitted to stink up the place for a bunch of years. Terrific hitter, phenomenal non-SB baserunner, mediocre and occasionally wretched fielder in the second half of his career, couldn't hold down a position. MVP-type season in 1975, second only to Rod Carew. In the end, just too inconsistent to deserve election--not near the top of the group on any measure.

Aparicio: A slightly weaker clone of Maranville, with more baserunning and less fielding value. Poor hitter, no peak, not enough career value to be taken seriously by career voters.

Stephens: There really wasn't anything wrong with his defense after 1943. But once you deflate the war years and park adjust his stats, his hitting doesn't stand out any more than Pesky's, Fregosi's, or Harrah's. Very short career means he is the only one under 50 WARP in the group. Fregosi has the exact same profile as Stephens but was simply better in every aspect. Stephens voters should turn to him.

I hope this helps us begin to sort through the group and see if we can find one or two shortstops worthy of uniting around.
   153. yest Posted: October 19, 2007 at 12:54 AM (#2583137)
my order is
Harvey Kuenn singles hitters are underrated here
Luis Aparicio but not as underrated as defense
Rabbit Maranville
Dave Bancroft
   154. sunnyday2 Posted: October 19, 2007 at 01:21 PM (#2584149)
I can't do a write-up like DanR and this is just off the top but:

Lundy. Apparently an all-time great fielder, best of the NeLers even including Lloyd. Hit .330-.340 in the NeLs. Of course this translates to <100 OPS+ in MLE terms. But on the upside he was Ozzie Smith, with just as long of a career, and with +10 OPS+. On the low side maybe he was Luis Aparicio, but I don't think so. Long career, probably an A+ glove and a 90-95 OPS+. The only knock is he didn't walk enough. Like they say, if he MLEs 100 walks he frickin' Honus Wagner.

Now I only have him #25 on (off) my ballot. I voted for him once upon a time, but only a couple years, and then the backlog got a lot better. I used to call it Heisenberg's (?) Principle, that we deduct for the uncertainty surrounding the NeL numbers. But seriously, I don't think it is at all far-fetched that he was Ozzie Smith before Ozzie Smith.
   155. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 19, 2007 at 03:11 PM (#2584275)
I was not aware of Rizzuto's bout with malaria - I will probably bump his 1946 up a bit as well.
   156. Mike Green Posted: October 19, 2007 at 03:34 PM (#2584306)
It looks to me like Campaneris was below league-average as a hitter through age 35, and was average once baserunning/thieving is included. Campaneris and Concepcion are remarkably similar through age 35 offensively, with Campaneris a little better on the basepaths and Concepcion considerably better with the glove. I'd take the better fielder myself, but I think that they're both a ways behind Reuschel and John.

The Campaneris BBRef age 35 comp list (http://www.baseball-reference.com/friv/scomp.cgi?I=campabe01:Bert+Campaneris&st=int&compage=35&age=35) is cool.
   157. sunnyday2 Posted: October 19, 2007 at 03:40 PM (#2584313)
Suddenly those OBAs jumped out at me. Luis at .308, hey, Luis, heckuva job as lead-off hitter. Or should I say, hey, Lopez, nice line-up.

But Concepcion .32 and that one of the higher ones. And we're all fussy about Dick Lundy not walking enough? Seriously, folks, Lundy absolutely belongs in this conversation.
   158. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 19, 2007 at 05:44 PM (#2584446)
A lowish OBP in the 1920s or 1930s is NOT the same as a lowish OBP in the 1970's! That said, I have nothing against Lundy--to the contrary, I've expressed great interest in him in the past, but haven't gotten seasonal MLE's. I value reputation a great deal with Negro Leaguers--that is why I don't support Clarkson--so Lundy's spot in the pantheon combined with the fact that I don't think the HoM has elected enough shortstops makes me extremely interested in learning more about him.
   159. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 19, 2007 at 06:42 PM (#2584499)
Mike Green, if you want to compare Campaneris to league average you have to add 0.6 wins per 1 SFrac to his BTWAA for the DH seasons. The DH adjustment is included in the Rep column in these charts.
   160. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 19, 2007 at 07:21 PM (#2584536)
I agree with most of what Dan wrote, but since I credit Rizzuto for '46, he's just a smidge above the others for me. I could be persuaded about Lundy, though.
   161. sunnyday2 Posted: October 19, 2007 at 07:34 PM (#2584557)
>haven't gotten seasonal MLE's.

Meaning what? They're on his thread.
   162. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 19, 2007 at 07:41 PM (#2584567)
Sorry, I should have clarified that I meant his seasonal MLE's *using the new HoF data*, which I understand to be radically different from what we had available to us previously. A while back I posted on Lundy's thread asking for such info, but it was never provided.
   163. sunnyday2 Posted: October 19, 2007 at 08:02 PM (#2584591)
No, there never were new MLEs but the impact of the new data was discussed. I don't think they're radically different, just a slightly higher walk rate. Doc help us out here. How much higher, how many more walks, what OBA? Is it possible to do some MLEs with the new data?
   164. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 19, 2007 at 08:07 PM (#2584595)
I'm under the impression it approximately quadrupled the walk rate. I have been asking for revised seasonal MLE's for Lundy for months and for all I know he could be #1 on my 2006 ballot if I get them.
   165. Mike Green Posted: October 19, 2007 at 08:33 PM (#2584620)
DanR, do you include league adjustments? The NL of Concepcion/Campaneris time was the stronger league.
   166. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 19, 2007 at 09:01 PM (#2584641)
Sunny and Dan,

I'll work on the MLEs this weekend, when I'm not digging a trench in my basement (French Drain, lots of rain, oh my back will be in pain!)

I've actually begun working on Lundy's 2nd generation MLEs.

Here I'll crosspost #95 from the Lundy thread for reference.

So, I'm looking back at a few NgL guys to see if I've really got them right or not. And in so doing, I realized that the HOF data on Lundy is really different than the Holway data in post 6 that Chris used to create his initial projections.

here's a side-by-side look at how different:
In Negro Leagues

YEAR JHAVG HOFAVG NOTES
------------------------
1918 .125 | NA _ |
1919 .351 | NA _ |
1920 .286 | .324 |
1921 .361 | .310 | HR 3:3, HR/550 14:11, 3B 4:5, SB 4:5
1922 NA _ | NA _ |
1923 .290 | .297 | HR 9:1, HR/550 25:4, 2B 13:4, 3B 4:1 (could JH have mixed this up with 1924?)
1924 .339 | .338 | 3b 4?:4 (in my MLEs with CWL data added, this appears to be Lundy's best year)
1925 .297 | .276 |
1926 .320 | .330 | 2b 17:11
1927 .303 | .317 | HR 11:6
1928 .414 | .349 | 3B 4:3
1929 .336 | .294 |
1930 .344 | .362 |
1931 .276 | .256 | HR/550 13:7
1932 .328 | .313 |
1933 .167 | .155 |
1934 .279 | .240 |
1935 NA _ | .324 |
1936 NA _ | NA _ |
1937 .167 | .217 |


Chris did incorporate some of Gary A's data into the mix, presenting yet another variable. Anyway, as I've gone through the data, I'm finding Lundy's numbers to look a little different.

. . . . PA AVG OBP SLG OPSBWS
--------------------------------
CHRIS 9160 299 333 391 _92 _185 [from post 52 1919-1937the revised MLEs but with the old BWS.]
DOCc_ 8906 303 360 406 104 _221 [contextualized in the 1919
-1937 NL]
DOCn_ 8795 295 352 395 
--- ---- [neutral MLEsno league/park context4.5 R/G environment.


As you can see the difference is primarily in the OBP. I'm using the HOF data, which provides walks, and Lundy walks about 8% of the time, a little higher than Chris had him since Chris had limited walks data at the time.

The other big difference is in the BWS. I looked into this a little. I have Lundy with 5800+ outs. So I used the SBE to look up players from 1915-1940ish with 5000+ outs and a range of somewhat comparable OPS vs lgOPS and OPS+. I looked up their BWS, divided their BWS by their outs, multiplied by Lundy's outs to see how Dick stacked up and to see if my estimate, 40 BWS higher than Chris' in fewer PAs, was reasonable.

When I ranked them back out by their BWS in Lundy's outs I got this:

Manush 266 (similar outs, so i chose him as top-level outlier for reference)
Rice 237
Judge 233
Frisch 229
(Lundy 221)
Myer 217
Sewell 209
Traynor 206
Waner 188
McManus 164
Dykes 161
Bartell 157
Grimm 156

Given that Myer, Sewell, and Traynor all post better OPS+ than Lundy, his BWS appear to be about 20 too high. Or about 10%. The reason I think this occurs is that Lundy is posited by my system to be the only better-than-average or worse-than-average player on his team. And this status is calculated relative to position (see Clarkson thread for details). And since Lundy was usually above average for a SS, that means that he ends up being the best hitter above his position on these theoretically average teams and gets a little more credit for it. Eyeballing it, the effect appears to be worth a little more than 1 WS a year to him. I'm not sure theoretically how to make this go away, or whether I even should.

But another way to look at it is this: the new data and my means to translate it suggest that Lundy is a somewhat better hitter than Chris' most recent estimation, by about 13% on OPS+ (104 v. 92), and by about 19% on BWS (221 v. 185). Given this, we might suggest that applying the 13% increase on Chris' OPS+ to Chris' BWS might be a decent barometer of where I ought to be on BWS. That's about 209. So by that reckoning I'd be about 5% over but very much in the ballpark.

So after two or three years of MLEing, where I'm at today is that I'm prolly a few points over on the WS after several revisions trying to get them theoretically right. To be honest, WS is a cruel master for MLE purposes---I'm not sure there is any such thing as a correct answer to MLE WS. Buyer beware.


Now then, here's the MLEs I'm getting for Lundy based on what you've read above. They include the new HOF data as well as Cuban League data, and they are "regressed" in the manner I've discussed before (filling in gaps with a mix of career and recent-prior peformance data), contextualized all to the NL of 1919-1937, with 1922 a whole-cloth year and nothing for 1936 at all.

YRS AGE out|  paab _h bb|sh|hp|sb|dptb |csrc || avg .obp .slg
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
1919 20 33348444112036284284161355 ||.272 .327 .364
1920 21 377
55650914541334395191467 ||.285 .339 .375
1921 22 273
41638011929284284169462 ||.313 .362 .445
1922 23 361
568510164493853|115220586 ||.322 .381 .431
1923 24 392
58253415739345395203472 ||.294 .343 .380
1924 25 409
627566177524063|215256997 ||.313 .370 .453
1925 26 396
61253515566397385208481 ||.289 .366 .388
1926 27 376
587523161563543|125211583 ||.308 .375 .404
1927 28 372
56250614945355355209276 ||.294 .350 .413
1928 29 384
597542173473953|135230688 ||.319 .374 .425
1929 30 199
312273_8531206253114246 ||.311 .378 .418
1930 31 372
601539186514173|136242698 ||.345 .399 .449
1931 32 367
54649914441363395188467 ||.289 .343 .377
1932 33 363
575519170483643|115223588 ||.327 .385 .429
1933 34 391
56151313541344395178459 ||.263 .318 .346
1934 35 265
41237111735283284157360 ||.315 .374 .422
1935 36 165
242222_6316152132_82128 ||.283 .333 .367
1937 38 _46
_67_61_16_5_40011_230|  ||.263 .324 .383
===========================================================================
TOTAL_ 5843|8906|8043|2436|728|562|82|46|165|76|3264|71|1222|.303 .360 .406

YEAR 
_bws _fws _ws_ |162WS
--------------------------------
1919 13.2 || 6.3 19.5 20.5
1920 
14.5 || 7.2 21.8 22.9
1921 
12.0 || 5.4 17.4 18.3
1922 
15.1 || 7.4 22.5 23.6
1923 
10.7 || 7.6 18.2 19.2
1924 
19.5 || 8.2 27.7 29.1
1925 
11.9 || 8.0 19.8 20.8
1926 
16.5 || 7.6 24.1 25.3
1927 
13.9 || 7.3 21.2 22.3
1928 
16.3 || 7.8 24.1 25.3
1929 
_6.6 || 4.1 10.6 11.2
1930 
14.5 || 7.8 22.3 23.4
1931 
10.9 || 5.7 16.6 17.5
1932 
17.9 || 6.0 23.9 25.1
1933 
10.5 || 5.9 16.4 17.2
1934 
11.6 || 4.3 15.9 16.7
1935 
_4.1 || 2.5 _6.7 _7.0
1937 
_1.2 || 0.7 _1.9 _2.0
================================
TOTL |221.0 |109.8 |330.9 |347.4

YEAR
paab obp slg |lgob lgsl|obp+|slg+|ops+
------------------------------------------------
1919|484441|.327 .364|.319 .347|102 |105 |107
1920
|556509|.339 .375|.330 .368|103 |102 |104
1921
|416380|.362 .445|.348 .410|104 |109 |113
1922
|568510|.381 .431|.359 .419|106 |103 |109
1923
|582534|.343 .380|.352 .40897 93 90
1924
|627566|.370 .453|.345 .404|107 |112 |119
1925
|612535|.366 .388|.358 .429|102 90 93
1926
|587523|.375 .404|.347 .398|108 |102 |110
1927
|562506|.350 .413|.349 .400|100 |103 |104
1928
|597542|.374 .425|.355 .413|105 |103 |108
1929
|312273|.378 .418|.368 .443|103 94 97
1930
|601539|.399 .449|.370 .464|108 97 |105
1931
|546499|.343 .377|.344 .403|100 94 93
1932
|575519|.385 .429|.337 .412|114 |104 |118
1933
|561513|.318 .346|.327 .37597 92 90
1934
|412371|.374 .422|.342 .408|109 |104 |113
1935
|242222|.333 .367|.341 .40798 90 88
1937
67_61|.324 .383|.342 .39795 96 91
================================================
TOT 8906|8043|.360 .406|.347 .406|104 |100 |104 


OK, there you go!
   167. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 19, 2007 at 10:19 PM (#2584685)
Mike Green, no, my numbers definitely don't adjust for league strength. Certainly the NL was stronger than the AL in the 60s, but the 70s as well? The AL was fully integrated by 1973...

Eric, thanks *so* much for that. I'll turn those into WARP in a jiffy.
   168. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 19, 2007 at 10:26 PM (#2584689)
Just to be clear, this shows Lundy as an A level SS throughout his career, with no defensive peak or valley, just a flat rate applied throughout.
   169. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 19, 2007 at 10:32 PM (#2584693)
Wait, sorry about that, I mistated that. His defense is

1919-1930: .056 fws/game, or 6.6 per 1000 innings.
1931-1937: .045 fws/game, or 5.3 per 1000 innings.

I think this is what Chris used in his original MLEs, and I just retained it.

6.6 fws/1000 would be synonymous wih an A+ fielder, a legit annual GGer.
5.3 fws/1000 would be synonymous with roughly a B+ fielder.
   170. Arrieta, Gentile Arrieta Posted: October 20, 2007 at 01:28 AM (#2584790)
Wow, I think those are the most complete MLEs I've ever seen here. But even with all that, there's no 2B, 3B & HR. Can we have those? Separately would be o.k. so you don't have to redo the table. Thanks.
   171. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 20, 2007 at 03:25 AM (#2584852)
Don F,

I've chosen not to include them because I'm very unsure how park and league environments affect xBH totals. For instance, I don't know if the NgL had a lot more leg-doubles/triples, more ITPHR. On the other hand, the NgL parks were often more extreme than MLB parks.

I can tell you this, of the xBH I have for Lundy between MLB and the CWL, they are dispersed this way:

121 2b 20% of TB
36 3b 8.5% of TB
44 hr 13.8% of TB

If this directly translates in the MLE (which seems unlikely...), then call it
320-330 2b
85-95 3B
105-115 HR
   172. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 20, 2007 at 03:37 AM (#2584861)
Please see posts 105-106 in the Lundy file. And remember that my numbers are subject to some inflation, particuarly the WS.
   173. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 20, 2007 at 04:06 AM (#2584879)
DanR,

I just wanted to check in on the Clarkson issue. I understand your reluctance to jump on a guy who doesn't have much historical reputation, but I think it's important to ask if his lack of reputation is due to his play or his circumstances. I believe it's the latter. A quick review:
-1938 to 1939: breaks in
-1939-1942: plays with four NgL teams, including one that folded
-1941-1942: plays in Mexico
-1943-1945: plays in the European Theater
-1946-1947: plays in Mexico
-1948: plays in the Canadian Provincial League
-1949-1950: Plays in NgLs
-1950-1952: Plays in the American Association
-1952: Cup of Joe in Boston
-1953-1954: Texas League
-1955: PCL
-1956: Three leagues, then retires.

Much like Quincy Trouppe, but perhaps moreso, Clarkson simply wasn't seen by his NgL peers, and didn't stick in the majors, so his historical reputation is non-existent. In addition, he was a Dewey Evans kind of player, the sort whose balanced skills don't bring images of amazing speed or light-tower power or .400 averages instantly to mind. Trouppe, at least, had those three years in Cleveland after the War where he was seen and managed his team to the championship. Even then, the HOF committee didn't put him in the final cut of 30something because he didn't accumulate much actual NgL service time, and it wasn't empowered to consider his extra-NgL/MLB service. So that leaves Clarkson further yet out of the loop since his career jumps around even more than Trouppe's.

I agree that reputation is very helpful with these guys in general, but I think that's really only true for guys who spent virtually all of their career either in the NgLs or whose careers were mostly played in the 1900-1940 period. Thereafter the various diasporas first to the MxL, then into the military, then to the majors/minors/indys makes it next to impossible for peer opinion to be as reliable or valuable or helpful as in the previous eras.

Therefore I encourage you to reconsider your position on using reputation as a distinguishing/sorting factor with regard to Clarkson, Trouppe, Williams, Wilson, and others of that era.
   174. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 20, 2007 at 04:25 AM (#2584887)
I wrote him off initially as well because major league teams did not see fit to bring him up to the majors in the early 50s, when there was no shortage of black stars, including older ones like Paige. I know his MLE's were good, but if the scouts saw him and thought he wouldn't hit, that's a pretty damning strike against him.
   175. sunnyday2 Posted: October 20, 2007 at 04:39 AM (#2584893)
What with the quotas that guided MLBs use of black players initially--and in some cases, a lot longer than that--I don't know that his failure to get a shot reflects entirely on his ability. I am quite sure there were more black players capable of playing in the MLs than got the shot. OTOH saying that he was likely a ML caliber player is a lower standard than saying he was a HoMer. It's just to say that it doesn't prove he wasn't. For me, I think there are better black players from his cohort who DID play in the MLs but who didn't get a full opportunity and (broken record) of course I mean Elston Howard and Don Newcombe. I cannot for the life of me see how Clarkson goes ahead of them. In order to reach that conclusion you have to decide that Howard and Newk got a fair chance and Clarkson alone (of the 3) didn't. But that just doesn't stand up to scrutiny. Newk in particular spent time in Montreal when he was clearly ready for the MLs but the Dodgers already had their quota. Howard was stuck behind Berra, so that's a different deal but much of the rest of his circumstances parallel Newcombe. I also thought that Marvin Williams looked every bit as good as Clarkson.
   176. sunnyday2 Posted: October 20, 2007 at 04:39 AM (#2584894)
What with the quotas that guided MLBs use of black players initially--and in some cases, a lot longer than that--I don't know that his failure to get a shot reflects entirely on his ability. I am quite sure there were more black players capable of playing in the MLs than got the shot. OTOH saying that he was likely a ML caliber player is a lower standard than saying he was a HoMer. It's just to say that it doesn't prove he wasn't. For me, I think there are better black players from his cohort who DID play in the MLs but who didn't get a full opportunity and (broken record) of course I mean Elston Howard and Don Newcombe. I cannot for the life of me see how Clarkson goes ahead of them. In order to reach that conclusion you have to decide that Howard and Newk got a fair chance and Clarkson alone (of the 3) didn't. But that just doesn't stand up to scrutiny. Newk in particular spent time in Montreal when he was clearly ready for the MLs but the Dodgers already had their quota. Howard was stuck behind Berra, so that's a different deal but much of the rest of his circumstances parallel Newcombe. I also thought that Marvin Williams looked every bit as good as Clarkson.
   177. KJOK Posted: October 20, 2007 at 07:48 AM (#2584959)
but if the scouts saw him and thought he wouldn't hit, that's a pretty damning strike against him.


I'm not so sure the scouts doubted his bat - I think it was his glove that raised more questions. He was a SS in the Negro Leagues, but in the AA they kept trying to make a 3Bman out of him. He was clearly a strong hitter in the Texas League, even at an 'advanced' age.
   178. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: October 20, 2007 at 09:34 PM (#2585220)
I wrote him off initially as well because major league teams did not see fit to bring him up to the majors in the early 50s, when there was no shortage of black stars, including older ones like Paige. I know his MLE's were good, but if the scouts saw him and thought he wouldn't hit, that's a pretty damning strike against him.

Well, that and he was in his 30s by the time organized baseball cared to look at him. Sunny said it right about the informal quota and I'll add that in our discussions we've often noted that several teams failed to integrate until the mid to late 1950s or early 1960s. And even then were extremely slow to work more than one or two Blacks into the lineup or even the roster. And, of course, the NL was quicker to integrate as well. For a prolonged period, the real number of available jobs for MLB players was not 16 x 25ish, but rather something like 12-14 x 3.5ish, at lesat that's how I read it.

Furthermore, I personally think black players were on a shorter leash. Artie Wilson and Bus Clarkson are two examples of very different players with similar stories. Wilson, said to be an excellent defender, hit in the PCL for 10 years after he jumped the NgL. In 1949 or 1950 he was embroiled in a contract dispute with Yankees, gets out of it, then he gets the smallest cup of coffee with the NYG, who claim an off-field hitter like him couldn't hack it and ship him out to make room for another black player under their quota. Then it's back to the PCL, where he just kept hitting over .300---which was more important to folks back then. He got the shaft, and unlike Clarkson was a very scouty type: good field, .300, fast. Then there's Clarkson who hit everywhere he went and got a wicked short trial. Luke Easter played a while, but when he had some injury problems they got rid of him very, very quickly, and he went and mashed in several AAA leagues for another ten years...during a time when 1B in both leagues were ahistorically unproductive.
   179. DL from MN Posted: October 22, 2007 at 03:47 PM (#2588758)
Ozzie Smith::Dick Lundy as Alan Trammell::Bus Clarkson

That's how I see it. Trammell is underrated by modern observers just as Clarkson was underrated in his era.

Artie Wilson is more like Tony Fernandez.
   180. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 23, 2007 at 01:46 PM (#2590049)
OK, well, this is good--we have two elections left to get people on board the Lundy bandwagon. Let me make this clear--even my detractors must admit I know my shortstops--if you have a backlog shortstop on your ballot, it should be Dick Lundy. If you want to support a "glove" to balance out the overrepresentation of "bats," you should support Dick Lundy. And if you think Bobby Wallace deserves to be in the HoM, you should vote for Dick Lundy.

Before even getting into the MLE's, Lundy's reputation is such that if his MLE's were *not* Meritorious, they would need to be taken with a grain of salt. According to DL from MN, "When I asked Holway who we overlooked, he immediately jumped to Dick Lundy." Gary A reports that "observers were more impressed by Lundy's defense at short than anyone else's. Reputation-wise, only Lloyd approached him in NgL history (and it was to accommodate Lundy that Lloyd finally moved to second base in 1924)." Even NgL skeptics should give The Man Who Moved Pop Lloyd Off Shortstop™ the benefit of the doubt.

Now, to the numbers. Lundy's MLE's show him as the black Bobby Wallace: above-league-average hitter, world-class fielder at the game's most important position, long career, lowish peak. Translating them to my system, he has 67.5 WARP2, over 10% more career value than anyone else in the backlog. I definitely think these MLE's lowball Lundy's fielding, but nonetheless, in BP WARP terms, he'd probably have about 157 career season-adjusted BRAA, 99 season-adjusted FRAA, and 122 BP WARP1. Dr. Chaleeko gives him 347 career Win Shares, which is a whale of a total for a SS. For career and prime voters, in other words--whether you use my system, BP WARP, or WS--Lundy accumulated so much value that even a substantial uncertainty discount would leave him as a leading candidate. And again, the strength of his reputation makes me think he should be penalized for the uncertainty of MLE's less than some more anonymous NgL'ers.

These new MLE's only confirm what Lundy's reputation should have been telling us all along. Every voter owes it to the rest of the electorate to review Lundy's new MLE's along with the anecdotal evidence in his favor. Personally, given the perilously late appearance of these new findings, I think he should be a required disclosure.
   181. ronw Posted: October 23, 2007 at 03:16 PM (#2590157)
DanR,

Are you really not considering Negro League players who don't have MLE's? Your jump on the LUndy bandwagon after the revision of his MLE's seems to imply that.

I realize you can't put players like Bill Monroe, Ben Taylor, or Carlos Moran into your system, and that you probably haven't run someone like George Scales through it, but it does seem that you require MLE's before you can proceed.

Note, this is not a knock on your latest pet candidate, who has always been in my consideration set. I have always taken the MLE's as low, and have voted for Lundy in the past.
   182. ronw Posted: October 23, 2007 at 03:45 PM (#2590186)
Dan:

Here's a brief synopsis of some of the Negro Leagues data posted at the HOF site.

Dick Lundy (1920-1937, Ages 21-38, 614 games)

We have some stats for much of Lundy's career, more than for most Negro Leaguers. They say that he hit .306, with a .357 OBP and a .416 SLG over 2291 at bats. Plus he was an excellent defender.

Other elected contemporary shortstops include:

Dobie Moore (1920-1926, Ages 25-31, 438 games)

.345, .375, .517 - Short career, fabulous hitter, had a stellar defensive reputation.

Pop Lloyd (1920-1932, Ages 36-48, 444 games)

.343, .384, .450 - The old man could definitely hit. His defensive prowess was not what it was during the teens, however.

Willie Wells (1924-1948, Ages 15-39, 756 games)

.319, .385, .510 - We have some stats for much of his career. He played in a bandbox in St. Louis. Also has a great defensive reputation.


And let's see the remaining infield candidates:

George Scales (1921-1946, Ages 19-43, 666 games)

.321, .395, .508 - The man could walk, play all of the infield positions, and had some power. He also played in a bandbox for a park for some of his career.

Ben Taylor (1920-1929, Ages 31-40, 467 games)

.322, .375, .442 - Another outstanding fielder in the twilight of his career. We're missing his prime years.

Sammy T. Hughes (1930-1946, Ages 19-35, 316 games)

.302, .350, .431 - Probably spent some time in Mexico. Raw rates are similar to Lundy, but in a later decade.

Ray Dandridge (1933-1944, Ages 19-30, 186 games)

.315, .349, .400 - Not the hitter we thought he was, but very limited data due to Mexico seasons, WWII, and a turn in the minors.

Buck O'Neill, Judy Johnson, Newt Allen, and Oliver Marcelle have stats, but are all below .750 OPS, and would be unlikely to be elected.
   183. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 23, 2007 at 03:55 PM (#2590199)
If Dick Lundy is The Black Bobby Wallace . . . Ben Taylor is The Black Joe Start (in terms of murky data from prime years) . . . I will look at Lundy much closer for my next ballot - I would encourage others to look at Taylor, who the Hall of Fame committee elected and whose reputation backs that up.
   184. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: October 23, 2007 at 03:56 PM (#2590203)
Since there are so many unknowns with Negro Leaguers, I approach them the same way I'd approach almost any statistical endeavour: the more data I have, the more confidence I have in my result; the less data I have, the more I regress to the mean. There are two main types of NgL data: MLE's and reputation. In cases where there are no MLE's, all I have to go on is reputation, which means *a lot* of regression to the mean is required. And since all of the candidates with no-doubt-about-it-slam-dunk reputations have already been inducted, I don't vote for any of the remaining MLE-less candidates. In cases where there are MLE's, but the MLE's and reputation don't line up--e.g. the old numbers for Lundy, which conflicted with his Meritorious reputation, or the current case of Bus Clarkson who has Meritorious MLE's but no reputation--the contradictory findings also lead me to regress them heavily to the mean, leaving them off-ballot. It's when there are BOTH MLE's AND a corresponding reputation--as in the case of Lundy--when I feel I really have enough confidence in a player's record to push him high up my ballot.
   185. TomH Posted: October 23, 2007 at 04:29 PM (#2590241)
I will take another look at Lundy.

But again, he's not the only guy with shiny MLEs out there.

Cut/pasting from a post by Brent in the Bill Monroe thread; how would a 133 OPS+ match up with Lundy?

I’ll assume 7500 AB (which seems reasonable—I assume his career lasted from 1899–1914, or 16 seasons). Running through the formulas and converting his record to the 1899-1914 NL, we get:


. PA ... AB .. H .. TB BB+HBP Avg OBP SLG OPS
8097 7500 2459 3136 597 ...328 .377 .418 .795

Avg . OBP SLG OPS / LgAvg LgOBP LgSLG LgOPS / BA+ OBP+ SLG+ OPS+
.328 .377 .418 .795 /... .267 .332 .350 ...... .682 . / . 123 114 ... 119 133

Based on this admittedly small sample, it appears that by not being aware of the Cuban League hitting context, many of us may have been undervaluing Monroe.

What about non-statistical information? Riley’s comments on Monroe’s defense are effulgent with praise.
   186. DL from MN Posted: October 24, 2007 at 05:16 AM (#2591079)
> Bus Clarkson who has Meritorious MLE's but no reputation

I don't think you've been reading my ballot comments. Clarkson twice made the NgL all-star team - in 1941 and 1949. In between he played in Mexico and had military service. In the 1950s he twice outhit HoM outfielder Willard Brown in the Texas League. He doesn't get a lot of attention from Negro League scholars mainly because he didn't play that many seasons in the Negro Leagues. Instead, like Quincy Trouppe, he went to Mexico, Canada and the military during the bulk of the 1940s. As the Negro Leagues declined he spent his time dominating the high minors.

I like Bill Monroe but I think his career is a little short.
   187. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 24, 2007 at 11:54 AM (#2591144)
Clarkson twice made the NgL all-star team - in 1941 and 1949. In between he played in Mexico and had military service. In the 1950s he twice outhit HoM outfielder Willard Brown in the Texas League. He doesn't get a lot of attention from Negro League scholars mainly because he didn't play that many seasons in the Negro Leagues. Instead, like Quincy Trouppe, he went to Mexico, Canada and the military during the bulk of the 1940s. As the Negro Leagues declined he spent his time dominating the high minors.


See, I read these words and I think, "Man, Bus Clarkson had no reputation". 2 NgL all-star teams? Best hitter in the Texzas league? And this is what we're supposed to consider a HoM reputation?

I mean, seriously? The guy was obviously MLB caliber but there's a huge gap b/w MLB caliber and HoM. Shelley Duncan had great MLE's this year, too. That doesn't make him one of the 250 best players of all time.

If you played at a time when you were eligible for the big leagues, and you were not chosen to play, there is an enormous presumption that you are not Meritorious, and the only way to overcome that presumption is with Meritorious big league stats.
   188. Al Peterson Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:03 PM (#2591150)
If you played at a time when you were eligible for the big leagues, and you were not chosen to play, there is an enormous presumption that you are not Meritorious, and the only way to overcome that presumption is with Meritorious big league stats.

Willard Brown begs to differ...
   189. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:10 PM (#2591153)
Personally, given the perilously late appearance of these new findings, I think he should be a required disclosure.


Nobody is required to, however. I'm not.
   190. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:25 PM (#2591166)

Willard Brown begs to differ...


Wha? Willard Brown was one of the first NgL players that got a chance in the bigs. He may have failed there, but contemporary baseball men obviously thought he could play.

And indeed, Brown's disastrous MLB season raises the presumption that he was not MLB caliber. Of course, the gap b/w Brown's non-MLB reputation and Clarkson's is substantial.
   191. rawagman Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:32 PM (#2591171)
And indeed, Brown's disastrous MLB season raises the presumption that he was not MLB caliber. Of course, the gap b/w Brown's non-MLB reputation and Clarkson's is substantial.


Please don't tell me you are truly this ignorant?
Willard Brown was given 67 plate appearances.
Bus Clarkson was given 28 - when he was 37 years old!

Are you familiar with the term "small sample size"?
   192. rawagman Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:33 PM (#2591172)
BTW - in case you haven't figured it out - 37 year olds do not get to make MLB debuts unless they have pretty good reputations.
   193. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:38 PM (#2591176)
Please don't tell me you are truly this ignorant?
Willard Brown was given 67 plate appearances.
Bus Clarkson was given 28 - when he was 37 years old!


That information is largely irrelevant. What's relevant is:

Willard Brown: 1947
Bus Clarkson: 1952

If Bus Clarkson was a HoM player, in other words, not just an MLB caliber player but a GREAT one, why did no one give him a shot for 5 years? The quota doesn't explain that, gentlemen.
   194. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 24, 2007 at 12:40 PM (#2591180)
Are you familiar with the term "small sample size"?

Considering that we've elected NgLers based upon vanishingly small sample sizes of exhibition games against MLB-barnstorming teams, I'd be verrry careful with that argument before it goes places you'd rather not go.
   195. Dizzypaco Posted: October 24, 2007 at 01:03 PM (#2591210)
If Bus Clarkson was a HoM player, in other words, not just an MLB caliber player but a GREAT one, why did no one give him a shot for 5 years? The quota doesn't explain that, gentlemen.

I was really hoping someone would have this discussion, given it is the primary reason I elected not to participate in the HOM voting, despite being very interested in the discussions, and (obviously) opinionated. What's pretty obvious about Clarkson is that his contemporaries thought he was a good player, and there were probably some who thought he could make it in the majors, but virutally no one thought he would be a great major league player. That's why he didn't make it to the majors until 1952, and even then, without any real intention of playing him regularly.

He did very well in the Texas league. There are lots and lots of players who dominate in the minors but who don't dominate in the majors. The ability to dominate a minor league in your late 20's or 30's is not that impressive an accomplishment. Gregg Jeffries was a shortstop who dominated his leagues, until he reached the majors, and he was only 21 when he did it - should he be elected?

Still, its possible that all of the major league executive with teams signing black players missed the boat on him. And its for this reason that I said in one thread that he might have been a great player. And for this, several people jumped down my throat - "No, he was a great player" was the response. Well, no major league executive at the time thought he was, and he never played in the majors despite being of age when he could, so how can you possibly say that with certainty?

37 year olds do not get to make MLB debuts unless they have pretty good reputations.


Players who are passed over for years, and then brought up with no intention of being played regularly, do not have great reputations.
   196. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 24, 2007 at 01:11 PM (#2591225)
According to the BBWAA, Brooks Robinson was a better player than Ron Santo, even though Santo was actually the greater player. Should I discount that and just go along with the former's greater reputation instead?

I'm all for a discussion about Clarkson, but if we are going to question his lack of reputation, I hope we try to analyze the reasons why instead of just coasting on what people thought about him at the time.
   197. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: October 24, 2007 at 01:12 PM (#2591226)
Another, to me, significant point that I just uncovered after a little time looking at old newspapers.

Clarkson was brought to the Majors on April 28th. He was sent down on June 2nd and replaced by Johnny Logan, the guy who he had been supposedly outplaying with the Brewers for the past two seasons.

Why the short trial? Because the Braves had changed managers. On June 2nd, they hired Charlie Grimm, and Grimm's first move as manager was to send down Clarkson and replace him with Johnny Logan.

Why do we care about this? Because, for the few years prior to being hired by the Braves, Grimm had been the manager of the Milwaukee Brewers, where Clarkson and Logan played! In other words, when Clarkson's old manager from the Brewers was promoted to the Majors, the first thing he did was dump Clarkson and bring up his competitor, Johnny Logan!

How is that not a damming contemporary assessment of Clarkson's ability to play at the big league level?
   198. Dizzypaco Posted: October 24, 2007 at 01:18 PM (#2591237)
I'm all for a discussion about Clarkson, but if we are going to question his lack of reputation, I hope we try to analyze the reasons why instead of just coasting on what people thought about him at the time.

Isn't that what a reputation is - what people thought about him at the time?
   199. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: October 24, 2007 at 01:25 PM (#2591243)
Isn't that what a reputation is - what people thought about him at the time?


Yes, but it doesn't mean that those watching him were necessarily right.
   200. sunnyday2 Posted: October 24, 2007 at 01:25 PM (#2591244)
To me, it seems entirely clear that quotas are exactly the reason Clarkson didn't get a shot. And yet I also agree that while he may have been a ML caliber player (make that, WAS a ML caliber player), that in itself does not constitute proof that he was a HoM caliber player.

The Lundy-Clarkson debate supports my argument for Don Newcombe. Lundy had a fair chance to put together a resume, albeit not a ML resume. Clarkson and to a lesser extent Newcombe did not. There was nowhere short of the MLs to do that anymore. The historical record severely understates their ability. My sense, however, is that Newk got more of a shot than Clarkson because he had more ability, more value.
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