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Wednesday, October 30, 2002

The Rules

I’m in the process of getting a formal set of rules together, and I’m wondering what you guys think should be included.

Obviously we’ll have the voting system, we settled on 24-23-22-17-16-15-14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6 (if 3 are elected) IIRC.

We’ll have to figure out how to register the voters. I know this might be a pain, but I’m going to have to set up a new email address, actually I’ll set up a yahoo group most likely. The reason is that I’ve got over 100 people in the address book for the .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) account and yahoo won’t let me send an email to a group that big. It was a pain in the keyster last time to get that test email out there. I’ll let you all know when this group is set up.

I’m wondering if I could get a volunteer to maintain the email group. I can’t get to web email at work anymore, and I’m on dial up at home, so I don’t log on all the time, and things get missed. I apologize if you’ve slipped through the cracks. Once we get the group going on yahoo, this will be much easier.

I’m also wondering what other rules you’ll forsee us needing I’ll tell you where I’m leaning:

Eligibility 5 years after the first time the player plays less than 10 G in the field or pitches in less than 5 games. This will account for most token appearances. We could provide for an exception if someone feels there is a player who slips under this guideline but should eligible anyway. A voter would raise the issue, and we’d decide o a case-by-case basis (maybe a small committee of 3-5 people for eligibility questions?)

I don’t want this to get out of control with rules or anything, but I also want to anticipate problems. So let me know what you all think by posting on this thread, and if you have other questions/suggestions for things that should be in our “Constitution” post them here, so we can discuss and let’s get this thing rolling!

Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: October 30, 2002 at 01:06 AM | 78 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Rob Wood Posted: October 30, 2002 at 02:54 AM (#510937)
We probably need the final word on the following issues:

- who's generally eligible (all MLB players, pre-1871 players, negro leaguers, etc.)

- who's eligible for the first ballot (when do they have to be "retired" by)

- how often in back-calendar time we are going to have ballots (once a year or once every two years)

- how often in real-time we are going to cast votes (did we say once every two weeks)

- how many selections will be made in each election (a schedule of number of electees)

- voting tally rules (mentioned in your introduction) -- we probably need tie-breakers too

- oath pledging sincere voting; if questions arise a committee is empowered to investigate ballots and, if warranted, expel a voter

- weight to be placed on "pioneering", off-field behavior, etc.

- voting deadline (e.g., Friday 3 pm eastern time)

- can the voting be done in secret (e.g., sent just to the vote talliers) or does it have to be publicly posted

- how much detail of the voting results will be made public

- maybe give guiding principles on how to handle time missed due to injury, military service, etc. (or say that it is up to the individual voter)

Sorry about the length, but I kept thinking of issues that could probably benefit from guidance of some sort.

Thanks much.
   2. Marc Posted: October 30, 2002 at 06:18 AM (#510938)
First, I like Rob's list.

Second, a clarification is needed on the following even though I think I know what you mean, Joe.

>Eligibility 5 years after the first time the player plays less than 10 G in the field or pitches in less than 5
   3. scruff Posted: October 30, 2002 at 03:24 PM (#510940)
"So I interpret that to mean the first year under 10 (or 5 for a pitcher) after which time 10-5 was not again exceeded...?"

Yes, correct, good catch Marc, that's exactly the type of catch I'm looking for. We need to be clear, and though I love Law and Order, I'm not a lawyer.

Tom, I would say yes, you can change your ballot, and if you notice a mistake, you can change it even after the deadline. Rules should guides, not barriers, and common sense should prevail, IMHO.

If we notice something that looks funny, when reviewing the ballots, like a guy has been saying Deacon White was better than Buck Ewing all week, and then he lists Ewing 2nd and leaves White off, we'd probably drop him an email, just to make sure he didn't forget White.

I would have no problem with an absentee ballot.

Rob Wood, your list is excellent, I'll respond point by point a little bit later (hopefully today), that should set us up with a nice framework. If people disagree with what goes up, we can discuss. Thanks for taking the time to write that up.
   4. Brian H Posted: October 30, 2002 at 10:10 PM (#510941)
As long as we are "anticipating areas of confusion" I think we might need to be clear about how we are handling non-"major leaguer" who I will call "excluded players" (primarily Negro League players but theoretically Cuban, Mexican and even Japanese league players). Since are information is limited on these players we probably need to determine when they are elgible and whether pre-Jackie Robinson black ball players can be given credit for their achievements -- and reputations -- beyond the Negor Leagues. Here I am thinking about players like Martin DiHigo and Ray Dandridge who excelled for a number of years in Latin America as well as North America.
   5. fables of the deconstruction Posted: October 31, 2002 at 03:49 AM (#510942)
I assume this means 5 years after the first time...but assuming the player never again has more than 10 or 5. It wouldn't matter in the case of Jim O'Rourke or Hughie Jennings or Rusie or Brouthers (unless Rusie's seasons of zero games would count as less than 5 under your rule), but in the case of Sam Thompson it makes a difference as he played in 3 games in 1897, 14 in 1898 amd 8 in 1906. Your rule, Joe, would make him eligible in 1902 whereas my interpretation of your rule would make him eligible in 1903.

I think this is dependent upon "setting." Are we assuming that this "voting" is being done in January of eligibility year? (In the case of the first vote: 1906) Or are we voting in real time? (i.e.: 2002) "We" should think about this long and hard because it will make a large difference in the integrity of the voting.

--------
   6. MattB Posted: October 31, 2002 at 02:18 PM (#510944)
I assume Trevise is asking whether we should "know" certain things that haven't happened yet in vote-time.

Should I hold off on my vote for best second baseman though 1901 if I know that a dozen better players are about to have the peaks of better careers, and this guy won't rank nearly so high in less than a decade?

Should I give extra points to hitters who have injuries that only prevent them from fielding, because they didn't have the advantage of the yet-to-be-invented DH rule?

I think a better question, though, is the related question of how to judge players within the 19th century. When judging a player in the early period, should we "know" that the rules will be changed later to move back the mound? Should we "know" that the best first outfielder of the ERA all peaked in the late 1880's when judging players whose career spanned the first 15 years of the period under contemplation?

Specifically, if we started voting on players who retired by 1891 instead of 1901, at least half of most people's top ten would become ineligible, and more earlier players would be admitted. Should we let the arbitrary voting cutoff change our voting results, or should we consider each period (say, each decade or 15 year period) independently, and vote for the best of each period, just as we are not letting knowledge of baseball players of the 1920s change our voting of players in the 1890s.
   7. Rob Wood Posted: October 31, 2002 at 08:50 PM (#510945)
Just a thought on this last issue. I think it eminently reasonable to assume knowledge as of the "vote-time". For example, if we are voting in 1906 for players retired as of 1901, say, then we should assume that we know about Honus Wagner. Thus, we may wish to downgrade 19th century shortstops since we could believe that they do not compare to Wagner who we have "seen" play. That's the extent that I think "foreknowledge" should be applied. But don't knock Ernie Banks, say, because Alex Rodriguez is on the way in 40 years.
   8. dan b Posted: October 31, 2002 at 11:17 PM (#510947)
I would side with Rob on this one - we will vote for the best players on the ballot, but having "seen" Wagner, we are not going to give Pebbly Jack a boost up our ballot just because he was the best shortstop on the ballot.
   9. Marc Posted: October 31, 2002 at 11:54 PM (#510948)
First, thanks Matt and all, for clarification on this matter.

To me, the most salient example of this debate will end up surrounding catchers, because up until Yogi Berra there never was a catcher whose numbers could match up to the best players at any other position. To be specific, should we boost Deacon White because otherwise there might not be another catcher between Buck Ewing and Mickey Cochrane? How we treat the Deacon will relate specifically to that question and, if you think 45 years is too long between catchers, then is Deacon White more deserving than Roger Bresnahan or Ray Schalk?

Third basemen could also be affected by how you resolve such a matter. It could be argued, perhaps, that no third baseman before Eddie Matthews deserves to be in the HoM. J. Collins, Traynor, certainly Kell all have their critics. How many third basemen and which ones should get some extra credit for playing at a position that was long underrepresented in the HoF and is likely to be underrepresented in the HoM?

I agree that none of us will be able to pretend that we do not possess such guilty knowledge.
   10. dan b Posted: November 01, 2002 at 12:43 AM (#510949)
In the context of a 1906 election, we can not let our knowledge of Matthews, Brett and Schmidt affect our evaluation of Ezra Sutton, but we can let our knowledge of Jimmy Collins temper our zeal to rush a 3B into the HoM.
   11. Scruff Posted: November 01, 2002 at 08:59 PM (#510950)
We probably need the final word on the following issues:

I'll go point by point Rob.

- who's generally eligible (all MLB players, pre-1871 players, negro leaguers, etc.)

MLB Players, Negro League players, Minor league players (if you can make the case, good luck, but it?ll be interesting discussion, guys like Buzz Arlett). Am I missing anyone else? Pete Rose and Joe Jackson are eligible also.

It?ll be good if we can get someone with Negro League expertise to submit a list of players and when they?d be eligible, I have no clue as far as that goes. I?d think we should at a minimum list all of the Negro League players covered in the NHBA.

- who's eligible for the first ballot (when do they have to be "retired" by)

Have to be retired by 1900 for the 1906 induction. We'll have to finalize the "token appearance" rule as well.

- how often in back-calendar time we are going to have ballots (once a year or once every two years)

I was thinking every year. I know it?d go faster every other year, but I like looking every year. Besides, we have to have a reason for people to show up each year, right? Tourism dollars!! :-)

- how often in real-time we are going to cast votes (did we say once every two weeks)

I agree, once every two weeks, although after the first election, it?s just a matter of adding and slotting the new eligibles, so weekly might work out. Tallying will take time too though, so we?ll probably stick with bi-weekly. I suppose we could alternate tallying between 1-3 people, so we could run weekly elections. Let me know what you all think.

- how many selections will be made in each election (a schedule of number of electees)

I put a schedule forth a few months back, I don?t think that?s changed. This is what I came up with:

1906 4
   12. Marc Posted: November 01, 2002 at 10:49 PM (#510951)
First, I agree totally that the Players HoM should be restricted to players who are 100% HoMers based on their playing career. No extra credit for managing or anything else (eg Al Spalding, Clark Griffith, etc.).

Similarly, the Managers HoM should be restricted to managers who make 100% of the standard for that.

But then there is I think a valid discussion about guys who combine various different roles into a lifetime of baseball, and Clark Griffith is a case in point, and Branch Rickey and many others. Maybe we need an Executives HoM, too!? What about Doc Adams or Bill Hulbert or Ban Johnson or Judge Landis or Marvin Miller or Bud Selig (KIDDING!)? How about a Lifetime Achievement vote every 5 years? Maybe even an Executives HoM AND a Lifetime Achievement Award, the latter being for those odd combo guys.
   13. dan b Posted: November 03, 2002 at 05:11 AM (#510952)
Let's just focus on players and not bother with managers, pioneers and executives.
   14. Rob Wood Posted: November 03, 2002 at 06:11 PM (#510953)
I agree with dan b on focusing on players. Also, I would strongly advocate weekly voting rather than bi-weekly voting to keep momentum going strong, keep interest from waning, remembering to vote, etc. I realize that the discussions will be a lot of fun and we won't want to curtail them, but they will be necessarily limited in scope.

Most of the players will be hold-overs from the previous ballot who we likely would have discussed previously. Only a few new players are added to each ballot. Some will be obvious HOM'ers and others obvious non-HOM'ers. Only very few new players entering a ballot will require extended discussion, and since they don't ever leave the ballot there will be plenty of time (ballots) to discuss them.

It seems to me that the key issue for weekly voting is whether we can all vote, tally, and report back the voting results in a timely manner. Maybe some system could be developed to ensure this. I think it would be worth it.
   15. Howie Menckel Posted: November 04, 2002 at 03:45 PM (#510954)
Pardon if this sounds dumb, but..
   16. Rob Wood Posted: November 04, 2002 at 07:27 PM (#510955)
Howie, that's a good question. I think you should send an email to JoeDimino (aka Scruff) and he will add you to the list. Joe can post the proper email address when he has the time.
   17. scruff Posted: November 04, 2002 at 08:17 PM (#510956)
I will setup the yahoo group later this week. At that point, I'll post it here, with instructions for how to sign up.

I do have an email address book at the old yahoo address, and I'll send an email to everyone on that list as well.

Thanks for the rules comments, does anyone have any other issues with what was written?

I agree with 1-week elections Rob, there were some warnings though, which is why I hesitated. As long as I'd have computation help, I don't see it being an issue.

I still think electing managers would be good. Executives are much tougher to quantify (not that managers are easy), but I think it would be good to include the Joe McCarthy's and Earl Weavers as well.

There are currently 16 managers in the Hall of Fame.

Using the same scale as we did for player elections, we'd have:

2 managers elected in 1906 as catch up.

Then we'd elect a new manager in 1910, 1918, 1927, 1935, 1944, 1952, 1960, 1967, 1974, 1979, 1985, 1990, 1995, 2000, 2005, 2009, 2014. It basically works out to one manager every 138+ team seasons (as defined in the HoM player selection process, we adjusted the 'team seasons' somewhat, especially in the 19th Century).

I think we could handle this, and people who choose not to wouldn't have to vote. If most of you are strongly opposed we could scrap it (it obviously wouldn't work if we only had 4 people voting or something like that), but I think it'd be a nice little "wing". I think the contributions of managers are generally in the public domain, whereas with executives it's a lot tougher to figure out who did what.
   18. MattB Posted: November 04, 2002 at 08:36 PM (#510957)
The rationale of the HoM is that the voters have traditionally done a poor job in selecting players and that we can do better.

Is there the same assumption for managers? If not, a manager election may just be a redundancy, except at the margins.
   19. MattB Posted: November 04, 2002 at 11:23 PM (#510959)
I agree with Mark. Every two weeks will allow many of us to take vacations without missing a year or two.
   20. jimd Posted: November 05, 2002 at 12:01 AM (#510960)
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   21. MattB Posted: November 05, 2002 at 05:20 PM (#510961)
"- how often in real-time we are going to cast votes (did we say once every two weeks)

I agree, once every two weeks, although after the first election, it?s just a matter of adding and slotting the new eligibles, so weekly might work out. Tallying will take time too though, so we?ll probably stick with bi-weekly. I suppose we could alternate tallying between 1-3 people, so we could run weekly elections. Let me know what you all think."

I agree with jimd that it is the process rather than the destination that is more fun.

Also, it's hard to know how much work to do for any given player without knowing previous results. If I have John Clarkson third on my ballot, and he ends up 20th in the voting, I'm going to want to either (a) do more research on Clarkson to convince others to raise him up in their ballots, or (b) reassess my opinion on Clarkson and maybe drop him down on a subsequent vote. On the other hand, if Clarkson finishes sixth I'll probably decide not to bother "campaigning", assuming he'll get in next time.

I will, of course, give the same reconsideration to players I had ranked low or off the ballot, but got considerable support from others. If, on re-examining the merits, I see that others had a point, I'll bump someone up a few places.

Meanwhile, if my top three pitchers all get inducted on the first ballot, and I find none left in my top 15, I may want to reconsider re-slotting other pitchers to keep some sort of ballot balance. On the other hand, if Bobby Mathews crawls to the top of my ballot one day, and no one else is even considering him despite his 297 career wins (WARP of 67, era adjusted WARP2 of 2.7 -- talk about severe!) I could decide just to drop it.

In all, I'd suggest there's more to subsequent votes than just "adding and slotting." Every two weeks actually seems a little fast to me, but I'd take it over a every-week alternative.
   22. DanG Posted: November 05, 2002 at 06:07 PM (#510962)
The compromise between weekly and biweekly could be a form of "strategic skipping". We use mainly weekly balloting, but wherever a barrier to voting exists we skip a week. That is, we try to anticipate weeks where there are obvious distractions.

Assume that we begin voting next month, ballots due every Friday. We would want to skip the Friday of December 27, leaving a two-week gap at that point. We would return to weekly balloting until Easter week, skipping Friday, April 25th. We then may want to skip the Friday after Memorial Day, May 30th. Return to weekly voting through June, then vote biweekly during July and August, skipping July 4th & 18th, and August 1st, 15th and maybe 29th.

You get the idea. Even if we decide to use a biweekly schedule, we may still want to use this idea of postponing the vote on occasion.

DG
   23. scruff Posted: November 05, 2002 at 08:13 PM (#510963)
Good discussion on voting time-frame guys, I have nothing to add, we can keep going until we build a consensus. One barrier that was mentioned, about vacations could be handled by sending in your ballot in advance.

Another idea, this relates to the journey . . . We've already moved the first election back from 1915 to 1906. After looking the discussion that has picked up on the RF thread, would moving back the first elections help at all?

It seems like we are having problems comparing across eras, would moving back the first election to 1900 (or earlier) help? Just a thought, I don't really have an opinion either way.

One other thing, even if we don't start earlier . . . we won't be 'caught up' in terms of number of elected HoMers matching the number we should have (based on the previously mentioned formula) until 1955 I think. Does this bias the elections in favor of future players too much? We could elect more players earlier and slow down later if you guys think that would work.

Or we could just leave it as is. Just tossing some ideas around to see what you guys think.
   24. MattB Posted: November 05, 2002 at 08:59 PM (#510964)
Scruff,

Theoretically, it shouldn't make much difference. The best players should rise to the top, irrespective of the time frame. A logical result of this voting scheme, however, is that it shouldn't be surprising if George Gore or Charlie Bennett gets inducted alongside Jackie Robinson or Tom Seaver, after spending decades bouncing along the bottom of people's ballots.

If your concern is that too many 1890's stars are crowding out the 1870s and '80s stars, then the answer is either:

(1) Good. The 1890s players were better.

or

(2) We want to award value against peers, so the election should be framed to give players from each decade a fair shake. This would be a more extreme -- but logical -- extension of the idea that are voting IN the time period, and not looking back with hindsight, knowing that 1890s players will blow their predecessors out of the water.

If (2), then it makes sense to move back the election starting date to let in more pre-1890s stars, but it will likely be at the expense of players from the 1930s through 1950s (assuming the overall number elected doesn't change).

The only odd aspect of moving the vote back any further, though, is that if you choose to make the first election in 1895 or 1900 instead of 1906, Cap Anson, who played in the first year possible, suddenly becomes ineligible (he doesn't retire until 1897). It's a little odd to have a first election without knowing until some future date how good all the players who started in pro ball will turn out to be. Sort of like opening up a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1957 and inducting a whole bunch of one-hit wonders along with Chuck Berry.
   25. MattB Posted: November 05, 2002 at 09:05 PM (#510965)
BTW,

I hope everyone is actually going out to do some REAL voting today.

I moved from Pennsylvania to New Jersey less than 30 days ago, and as a result am now disenfranchised in both states. If anyone out there has an extra absentee ballot, cast it for me!
   26. Rob Wood Posted: November 05, 2002 at 09:41 PM (#510966)
I am comfortable leaving the first ballot as is (1906). I think there will inevitably be a difference of opinion as to the merit of 1870's players vs 1880's & 1890's players. This is probaby healthy. We will be doing a much better job than the HOF voters in 1936 in any event. I wouldn't want to set up the system to force in a lot of 1870's players. And I think we'll have plenty of them as is; guys like Anson, O'Rourke, Hines, White, Sutton, Start, and Wright.

While I am here, can I ask a favor? Has anybody compiled a list of who will be coming on the ballot each year after the first ballot? If so, could you post it. I am definitely curious (though I promise not to change my vote based upon who will be coming on the ballot later). Thanks much.

Back to the weekly vs bi-weekly issue. I think vacations can easily be handled by taking the week off (e.g., Christmas week) or sending your ballot ahead of time. Weekly just seems like the right pace to me. I was part of the Baseball Survivor group and we did weekly voting. It worked well, but even with weekly voting interest tends to wax and wane. I wouldn't want to go to bi-weekly unless it is necessary logistically, as I've said before.
   27. Scruff Posted: November 05, 2002 at 10:34 PM (#510967)
I head what you guys are saying about moving back the date, just wanted to float it out there. It's weird though, if you look at the RF thread, I've 24 guys that I think should be in, and that's not even counting guys like Browning and Thompson. That's basically the top 2 at every position (3 1b and 3 C) and 6 pitchers, and two multipositional guys. I don't think that's unreasonable for 30 years of baseball.

Others have similar lists. That would take until 1918, assuming no one else hops on the ballot. Obviously not all of those guys will get in. Does this mean I'm an easy mark, or possibly our standards are too high. Should we be allowing a few more people in? I guess we just take the system and see where it goes. There will be time to make up for people as we move on, the ballot will thin out a little after 1925 or so. Just figured I'd bring it up at least.

I do think dominance over the competition played against should be the basic evaluation, with some timeline adjustment as well. But I don't think the 'time-machine' adjustment should be applied. If the players of the 1880's were born in the 1980's, they'd be bigger, stronger, faster, etc.

I think generally speaking each decade should be about equally represented in terms of numbers, realizing some decades are weaker overall than others. What I'm saying is it's not a problem if there are 10 players from the 1880's and 12 from the 1930's, but there is a problem if it's 5 from the 1880's vs. 17 from the 1930's. There's a balance to be struck somewhere in there, hopefully we find it.
   28. MattB Posted: November 05, 2002 at 10:40 PM (#510968)
Rob,

Just off the top of my head, these are the top players who retired each of the nex few years, based on my own personal understanding of the Token Appearance Rule (I assume I am missing several):

1901: Cupid Childs, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Nig Cuppy
   29. scruff Posted: November 05, 2002 at 10:41 PM (#510969)
Should say I "hear" what you guys are saying in my first paragraph (4:34).

When I say equally for the decades, I realize the 1960s, 70s, 80s, 90s etc. will and should have more players, because there were more teams. If there are a little less than twice as many players from the 00's as the 1950's that makes sense to me, all other things equal.

As for the weekly/bi-weekly, I don't think tallying the votes will be an issue, assuming we get a few volunteers. The fact that Rob is speaking from experience with Survivor carries some weight too, he's been there before.

I'm still open to convincing, but I guess I'm leaning towards weekly with skipping holiday weeks, and people can submit advance ballots if they'll be on vacation during the week of an election.
   30. MattB Posted: November 05, 2002 at 10:47 PM (#510970)
Scruff wrote:

"It's weird though, if you look at the RF thread, I've 24 guys that I think should be in, and that's not even counting guys like Browning and Thompson."

But as I understood the project (or, as you explained it), it's not about In/Out, but about the best 215 (or however many are in the HoF). If it were about in/out, we'd be voting like th HoF ballot is set up.

The question will end up being, eventually: Is the 20th best 19th century player one of the 215 most Meritorious? If we knew that going in, there'd be no point in proceeding.
   31. Rob Wood Posted: November 06, 2002 at 12:50 AM (#510971)
Extending MattB's list (thanks Matt) of potential HOM candidates who retired in a given year:

1901: Cupid Childs, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Nig Cuppy, Gus Weyhing
   32. jimd Posted: November 06, 2002 at 01:31 AM (#510972)
I might as well post my preliminary ballot also. I drew up 4 different ballots:
   33. jimd Posted: November 06, 2002 at 01:32 AM (#510973)
Aarghh. Wrong thread. Sorry guys.
   34. Marc Posted: November 06, 2002 at 01:32 AM (#510974)
I would leave the first vote in 1906. I agree that having a first ballot without Anson et al would have us floating in space a little bit. And we would still not have helped ourselves at all with the toughest issue of all--evaluating pre-NA and NA players. And I think we should probably end up with approx. the same number of HOFers from each decade (with the likely exception of the 1870s), because "a pennant is a pennant is a pennant."

I like strategic skipping, but I also like finishing this job in 2+ years rather than 4.
   35. MattB Posted: November 06, 2002 at 04:33 AM (#510975)
Clarkson leads on ERA+, but his ERA was almost identical to Galvin's (2.81 to 2.86). The difference is therefore almost entirely due to "park factors", but how reliable are park factors when one pitcher is pitching over half your innings. Let's look.

Clarkson was Chicago's number one pitcher from 1885 to 1887. Chicago used West Side Park for those three years and three years after that (1888-1890).

Pitching Park Factors (provided by baseball-reference) for the Clarkson years: 108, 110, 110. Pitching Park Factor the next three years: 106, 104, 103. Did the park change? Not that I'm aware of. This result could entirely be caused by Clarkson himself pitching better on the road.

Then Clarkson goes to Boston: Park Factor over his four year tenure: 100, 104, 105, 109. Did Boston's park (it was the same all four years) go from neutral to increasing offense by 18%, or is it more likely that Clarkson (or one of his colleagues) skewed the numbers by a couple of bad outings at home and good outings on the road?

It seems a lot more reasonable that one or two pitcher can skew the numbers when you see that they was pitching such a large percentage of their teams innnings.

Meanwhile, I showed that Galvin was better on walks and homers allowed. Walks is not park-dependent and while homers can be, the gap between them was huge. Galvin also has more Wins, more Wins Shares, and leads on Baseball Prospectus's WARP3 by a fair amount (80.7 to 66.9).

Clarkson struck out more and allowed fewer hits on balls in play, but strikeouts were a smaller part of the game then, and hits on balls in play are necessarily more defense dependent, irrespective of how closely the correlations match those seen today.

Meawhile, I believe that Galvin spent most of the late 1870s playing in the California League at a time when it was not obvious going in that the California League would turn out to not be a "major league" with stats that would "count". That will pad at least his counting stats (not that he needs more wins).

Just a few reasons to look past ERA+...........
   36. dan b Posted: November 06, 2002 at 04:49 AM (#510976)
For several months now we have been kicking around the merits of all the possible candidates on the first ballot, yet the recent posts on the RF thread show more diversity than consensus. If we vote every week, that will leave us with what, 4 or 5 days to exchange views on the new candidates after the results from the previous election are known. Doesn't sound like enough time to me.
   37. DanG Posted: November 06, 2002 at 03:28 PM (#510977)
dan b wrote:

"the recent posts on the RF thread show more diversity than consensus. If we vote every week, that will leave us with what, 4 or 5 days to exchange views on the new candidates after the results from the previous election are known. Doesn't sound like enough time to me."

Remember, we have more than 100 registered voters. But in this discussion we're hearing from how many, maybe 15? That silent majority will control the voting (as is usually the case).

The first election or two will be VERY important, as we try to get the 19th century straight, the most difficult era to assess. Most of the voters will fall in line with the consensus established in the first couple elections.

Our current diversity of opinion reflects our difficult task here. Let's work to get it right.
   38. DanG Posted: November 06, 2002 at 04:02 PM (#510978)
Rob and I seem to have a different understanding of the "token" rule. I'm not sure how scruff intended it in his definition, but Rob is taking "retirement year" to be the last year the guy played in 10 G or pitched in 5 G. I don't like this interpretation, because it is VERY common for a player to make a last token appearance the year after his "retirement".

I thought scruff meant to count as the "retirement" year the year AFTER the last season with 10G or 5G (unless the guy didn't play the year after, of course). This gives a different "retirement" year for many, as Rob indicated, but is much closer to giving players' eligibility the same year as the HoF does.

Using this idea of "retirement year", I have this list of upcoming candidates, more restrictive than Rob's list:

1901 B.Hamilton, C.Childs
   39. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: November 06, 2002 at 04:45 PM (#510979)
Remember, we have more than 100 registered voters. But in this discussion we're hearing from how many, maybe 15? That silent majority will control the voting (as is usually the case).

Well, I have been silent for a while, as have some others who were more active early on in the discussions. I think you'll find a lot of people involved once we are actually moving rather than standing still... at any rate, I'll be posting my preliminary ballot soon.
   40. DanG Posted: November 06, 2002 at 06:46 PM (#510981)
Another thing I think is interesting is to look at the effect of starting earlier than 1906.

First off, it would be hard to change at this point, since so much prior discussion is based on starting in 06. Also, I agree there is something not right about a first vote that doesn't include Anson.
   41. Marc Posted: November 06, 2002 at 08:30 PM (#510982)
A fun twist might be to start in 1902, 100 years ago today, with players who retired (or who meet the token appearance rule) as of the end of the 1896 season. This would include a substantial number of worthies but not Anson, Connor and Ewing among obvious A list candidates. I just kind of like the symmetry of going back 100 years even rather than 96 or 106.
   42. Rob Wood Posted: November 06, 2002 at 09:01 PM (#510984)
I extended my search for players retiring in specific years of the 1910's. It helps me anticipate who and when the 19th century players are likely to get selected. As DanG mentions above, the token rule will determine the year many of these guys enter our ballot. I am including more players besides those DanG listed.

1910: Ginger Beamont, Elmer Flick, Harry Howell, Addie Joss, Willie Keeler, Sam Leever, Rube Waddell, Vic Willis

1911: Bill Dahlen (token?), Toppy Hartsel, Deacon Phillippe, Harry Steinfeldt, Jesse Tannehill (token?), Fred Tenney, Roy Thomas, Cy Young

1912: Kid Gleason (token?), Deacon McGuire (token?), Jack Powell

1913: Art Devlin, Johnny Kling, Cy Seymour, Jimmy Sheckard, John Titus, Doc White

1914: Frank Chance (token?), Mike Donlin, Kid Elberfeld, Clark Griffith (token?)

1915: Roger Bresnahan, Fred Clarke (token?), Fielder Jones (token?), George Mullin, Danny Murphy, Hooks Wiltse

1916: Mordecai Brown, Miller Huggins, Nap Lajoie, Christy Mathewson, Nap Rucker, Joe Tinker

1917: Sam Crawford, Harry Davis (token?), Eddie Plank, Ed Reulbach, Honus Wagner, Ed Walsh

1918: Bill Donovan, Hughie Jennings (token), Tommy Leach, Frank Schulte, Bobby Wallace

1919: Red Ames, Hal Chase, Sherry Magee, Heinie Zimmerman

Note that I have not yet listed any players who played in the 1920's in token appearances (such as Johnny Evers), and therefore should appear on our ballot as if they retired in the 1910's.
   43. MattB Posted: November 06, 2002 at 09:22 PM (#510985)
I think, if we move our first election back from 1906 to 1876, Ed Pinkham should be on the top of our ballots. He clearly leads to pack of those who retired in 1871.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/p/pinkhed01.shtml
   44. scruff Posted: November 06, 2002 at 11:34 PM (#510986)
RE: Token appearance rule, ie played in 10 or pitched in 5 games . . .

I'll go through each of the differences on Rob and Dan's lists and use examples as to what I was intending, hopefully that will help:

Herman Long - played 91 games in 1903, 1 in 1904. His retirement year should be 1903, and he'd be on the 1909 ballot. (voting announced in January, 1909; ceremony July/August, 1909 :-))

Hughie Jennings - played 78 games in 1902, 6 in 1903, 1 in 1907, 2 in 1909, 1 in 1912 and 1 in 1918. Retirement year 1902, on the 1908 ballot.

Bill Dahlen - played 69 games in 1909, 3 in 1910, 1 in 1911. Retirement year 1909, on the 1915 ballot.

Jesse Tannehill - played 27 games in 1908, 16 in 1909, 1 in 1911. Retirement year 1909, on the 1915 ballot.

Clark Griffith - pitched 17 games in 1906, 4 in 1907, 1 in 1909, 1912, 1913 and 1914. He played in 5 games in 1907 but only pitched in 4. His retirement year is 1906 and he's on the 1912 ballot.

Hopefully that helps. Let me know if you need more . . . or have a specific one you want answered.
   45. MattB Posted: November 07, 2002 at 12:28 AM (#510987)
Scruff,

The problem with this rule, though, is it puts us out of alignment with the way actual HoF inductions are made. The problem, as I thought I understood it, was the Minnie Minoso issue. Almost every player has a "last year" issue where they play in 2 or 7 or 20 games their last season. I thought we would only be making an adjustment for the few with non-consecutive token seasons (early managers who activated themselves once every third year.)
   46. scruff Posted: November 07, 2002 at 12:44 AM (#510988)
Matt, I can see your case for the guy that plays one year after his last real year, then retires April 3.

But what about a guy who plays 3 games one year and another the next?

Maybe we could word it to cover this, something like:

Retirement year will be either the year the player plays his last game, or one year after the last time the player plays 10 games or pitches in 5 games; whichever is earlier.

But what about a guy that plays 55 games in 1952, then comes back and plays 11 games in 1956 and then retires for good. I still think that guy should be considered retired in 1952. Same for a Rijo type case. It's a sticky issue, but the goal should be to have a player come on with his peers.

Maybe make it a birthday requirement and have players come on after they are 42 years old or something? I dunno. I still think the 10 G thing is fine as a guideline, and we make an exception if appropriate (set up a 3-person committee or something).
   47. Rob Wood Posted: November 07, 2002 at 01:19 AM (#510989)
Okay, as I understand the token appearance rule that scruff has laid down, here are the relevant players joining subsequent HOM ballots (year listed is their "retirement" year):

1901: Cupid Childs, Nig Cuppy, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Guy Weyhing
   48. DanG Posted: November 07, 2002 at 01:50 AM (#510990)
Back in an earlier thread, I worded the definition for retirement year along these lines:

Use the year the player played his last game, unless that year is more than two years after the season he last played in 10 games or pitched 10 innings (revised now to 5 games pitched). That is to say, ignore token appearances more than two years after the last season with 10 G or 5 GP.

Using this definition brings only a very few players on "early". (Just a handful after 1920.) The definition you want brings MANY players on before five years after their actual final game played.

Yogi Berra, for example. He played 64 games in 1963, 0 in 1964, 4 in 1965. He came on the HoF ballot in 1971. Under my proposed definition, he would come on the HoM ballot in 1971, also.

Fred Clarke, for example. He played 110 in 1911, 0 in 1912, 9 in 1913, 2 in 1914, 1 in 1915. We ignore all token appearances after 1913, use that as his retirement year. Hey, it's a compromise.

How to figure Bobby Wallace? His career ended like this:
   49. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: November 07, 2002 at 02:13 AM (#510991)
if we move our first election back from 1906 to 1876, Ed Pinkham should be on the top of our ballots. He clearly leads to pack of those who retired in 1871.

Bah. Who wants pink ham when you can just have plain old Ham?
   50. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: November 07, 2002 at 02:14 AM (#510992)
Anyone clicking on the link above to Ralph Ham's stats should note that nifty .458 fielding percentage at third base.
   51. Rob Wood Posted: November 07, 2002 at 02:31 AM (#510993)
I am adding another 10 years to the list above. Okay, as I understand the token appearance rule that scruff has laid down, here are the relevant players joining subsequent HOM ballots (year listed is their "retirement" year):

1901: Cupid Childs, Nig Cuppy, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Guy Weyhing
   52. jimd Posted: November 07, 2002 at 02:50 AM (#510994)
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   53. Rob Wood Posted: November 07, 2002 at 03:55 AM (#510995)
I am adding another 10 years to the list above. Okay, as I understand the token appearance rule that scruff has laid down, here are the relevant players joining subsequent HOM ballots (year listed is their "retirement" year):

1901: Cupid Childs, Nig Cuppy, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Guy Weyhing
   54. scruff Posted: November 07, 2002 at 05:02 AM (#510996)
Thanks for the lists Robert.

Interesting Dan.

My problem with making people wait is the timeline thing several people keep bringing up. Many people are already talking like the 19th Century guys won't even be considered once the 'real' players come on the ballot. The same thing will keep happening. Almost everyone thinks that the further along we go, the better the players get. So letting a player on a few years late, due to some token appearances could be a major disadvantage.

Bobby Wallace is a mess, I agree.

In 1914, he played 26 G, 73 AB, no problem there. Then in 1915, 9 G, 13 AB; 1916 14 G, 18 AB. 1917, 8 G, 10 AB.

All of the sudden in 1918, he gets another regular gig. Was he coaching the Cards at that point? Did someone get hurt so he played 32 games?

I don't know.

But I think in the spirit of the rule, and the principle of keeping players on the ballot with their peers, this should be an (the?) exception, and he should be considered retired after 1914, and on the 1920 ballot.

I think in situations like this, the rules should be a guide, not a crutch. I realize this interpretation probably will draw some criticism, so let me have it.
   55. DanG Posted: November 07, 2002 at 05:46 AM (#510997)
Scruff,

I can see where you're coming from. But. Don't we want our new HoM candidates to enter the ballot the same year as they did in the HoF balloting? If we go with your rule, guys like Steve Carlton, Juan Marichal, Red Schoendienst and Yogi Berra come on early.

Another possible compromise would be to use one rule for elections before 1966 and a stricter rule afterwards. (That's the year the HoF went from biannual to annual elections.)

Another sticky example is Hornsby. His career ended like this:

1932 19 G-70 PA-16 games in the field
   56. Marc Posted: November 07, 2002 at 07:03 AM (#510998)
I don't know why we care what year players became eligible for the real HOF. If the real HOF is the gold standard, then why don't we just elect all of their players? I thought scruff's original proposal was simple and sufficient. The foregoing demonstrates that we've now made this very complicated.

And what are peers? Don Mattingly was born in 1961, debuted in 1982 and retired after 1995. Who is his peer? How about Darryl Strawberry, born '62, debuted '83, retired '99? How about Tony Gwynn, '60, '82, '01? Roger Clemens--'62, '84, still ticking? Or Dave Winfield, born '51, debuted '73, retired '95. Is Gwynn his peer or Winfield? Defining guys who retired the same year as peers is arbitrary. Not that I would argue for making them eligible based on the DOB or debut. But if the retirement date is in the ballpark, that's good enough. Does it really matter if Hornsby retires with Ruth in '35 or Frisch in '37?
   57. DanG Posted: November 07, 2002 at 03:18 PM (#510999)
Marc,

"Does it really matter if Hornsby retires with Ruth in '35 or Frisch in '37?"

Of course not. If we were really interested in matching players with their peers, we would date eligibility from the *middle* of players' careers, not the end. It could be done, but as you infer, it's an unnecessary complication.

This has nothing to do with the HOF being a "gold standard" or any such nonsense. It's simply for comparative purposes: how will our voting support compare with the HOF voting? Where did they blow it?

This is a walk through history. The more "actual reality" we can relate to our efforts here, the more fun, I think.

Efforts here to define "retirement year" are in that direction. In general, we want logical, consistent and defensible rules to govern our the HoM project. When (if?) this comes under the scrutiny of those outside our little community, we don't want to come off as hokey-jokes.

Sure, it's just baseball. But, I'm approaching this with the attitude that what we accomplish will have a lasting effect on "the process" of honoring baseball's truly great. Not to get too heavy, but I think if we have a serious attitude in the genesis of this project, we have a better chance to create something permanent and positive rather than something ephemeral.
   58. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: November 07, 2002 at 08:50 PM (#511001)
I agree with Andrew that provided the rules are VERY clear, and the list of eligibles is VERY clear, the rules on eligibility aren't really going to matter.

I have another question regarding voting. I know that we are supposed to consider all canadidates for election, but when it comes down to it I won't vote for the Black Sox eight (Weaver excepted), Chase, Zimmerman, Dubuc, or O'Connell. No way, no how.

(Why not Bill Burns? Because he was retired and we are considering what players did as players. Same as Pete Rose. In the end, I'm only concerned about actually throwing games anyway, so Gedeon and Weaver are fine with me too.)

I am torn, and currently rethinknig, about whether to consider voting for the Louisville four (Devlin, Hall, Nichols, Craver). The standards were very different in 1877 than they were forty years later, the game was different, the involvement of gamblers was very different - but while the pre-Ban Johnson game wasn't pure, it wasn't the utterly corrupted thing that we sometimes tend to think it was. The very fact that Heydler threw those four out on their ear and they never returned, I think says a lot about what the standards were.

Actually, having laid my cards on the table, I should ask the question. We may want to cross that bridge when we come to it, but we're coming to it now anyway because of Jim Devlin who was an outstanding pitcher.

I won't vote for a cheat, I won't honor the memory of one, no way, no how. I can handle someone's moral failings away from the ballfield, no matter how horrific, but laying down and deliberately losing games in exchange for money is (to me) just so anathema to baseball that I can't bring myself to vote for someone who has done that. I wish I knew why... I'm not usually so doctrinaire about these things. But there it remains.

Can I still vote? I understand if people think my votes should be thrown out if I preface them with "I will not vote for Joe Jackson," or Cicotte (who is an excellent candidate), Chase, Devlin, etc., and I won't bother voting if that's the case.

I do think people should be allowed to vote their conscience on these cases (in fact, I think we should just let people vote regardless and not worry about throwing votes or voters out, but that's just me I guess) and I hope we decide to go that way. I would guess that most of you, probably quite rightly, don't object to voting for Cicotte or Devlin or Chase or Jackson... so in the end I don't think this will matter.
   59. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: November 07, 2002 at 08:55 PM (#511002)
I agree with Andrew that provided the rules are VERY clear, and the list of eligibles is VERY clear, the rules on eligibility aren't really going to matter.

I have another question regarding voting. I know that we are supposed to consider all canadidates for election, but when it comes down to it I won't vote for the Black Sox eight (Weaver excepted), Chase, Zimmerman, Dubuc, or O'Connell. No way, no how.

(Why not Bill Burns? Because he was retired and we are considering what players did as players. Same as Pete Rose. In the end, I'm only concerned about actually throwing games anyway, so Gedeon and Weaver are fine with me too.)

I am torn, and currently rethinknig, about whether to consider voting for the Louisville four (Devlin, Hall, Nichols, Craver). The standards were very different in 1877 than they were forty years later, the game was different, the involvement of gamblers was very different - but while the pre-Ban Johnson game wasn't pure, it wasn't the utterly corrupted thing that we sometimes tend to think it was. The very fact that Heydler threw those four out on their ear and they never returned, I think says a lot about what the standards were.

Actually, having laid my cards on the table, I should ask the question. We may want to cross that bridge when we come to it, but we're coming to it now anyway because of Jim Devlin who was an outstanding pitcher.

I won't vote for a cheat, I won't honor the memory of one, no way, no how. I can handle someone's moral failings away from the ballfield, no matter how horrific, but laying down and deliberately losing games in exchange for money is (to me) just so anathema to baseball that I can't bring myself to vote for someone who has done that. I wish I knew why... I'm not usually so doctrinaire about these things. But there it remains.

Can I still vote? I understand if people think my votes should be thrown out if I preface them with "I will not vote for Joe Jackson," or Cicotte (who is an excellent candidate), Chase, Devlin, etc., and I won't bother voting if that's the case.

I do think people should be allowed to vote their conscience on these cases (in fact, I think we should just let people vote regardless and not worry about throwing votes or voters out, but that's just me I guess) and I hope we decide to go that way. I would guess that most of you, probably quite rightly, don't object to voting for Cicotte or Devlin or Chase or Jackson... so in the end I don't think this will matter.
   60. scruff Posted: November 07, 2002 at 10:02 PM (#511003)
Craig, I agree with throwing games and you don't get my vote. I think I worded the guidelines to include that (I think I said on field actions should be considered). Here's the issue . . . we know Cicotte threw the games. He won't be ineligible, but I imagine most will not vote for him for that reason. But with Jackson, we don't know he threw games. He hit the sh!t out of the ball in that series, and he vehemently denied throwing games. He took the 5 grand, but I'm pretty sure he didn't lay down. It was a different time back then. So I'd question your judgement on Jackson, but in the end it's up to you. I would not think your ballot should be disqualified.

I knew this one was coming. I think I should start a seperate thread for it. Give me a few minutes . . .
   61. Marc Posted: November 08, 2002 at 01:44 AM (#511004)
Dan, what is "actual reality"? As defined by the HoF? Or is there some parallel reality that is more "actual"? I think yes, and making Minnie Minoso wait until 1986 for eligibility is more real than the HOF's reality. Scruff's proposed rule would make him eligible in 1969, which works for me.
   62. Rob Wood Posted: November 08, 2002 at 03:29 AM (#511005)
Since I was very curious how a mock election series would unfold, I completed my tally of who I think are the best candidates to hit subsequent ballots. I am not saying that this is the definitive list or the proper years for all players, since there is still ambiguity (in my mind anyway) regarding the token rule. Anyway, as long as I compiled the list, I thought others may be interested as well. By the way, the ebb and flow of the mock elections is quite interesting.

1901: Cupid Childs, Nig Cuppy, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Guy Weyhing
   63. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: November 08, 2002 at 03:39 AM (#511006)
That Class of '28 is something else, eh? There's a good argument for Cobb, Speaker, and Collins being three of the top dozen or so players of all time.
   64. scruff Posted: November 08, 2002 at 05:39 AM (#511007)
yeah Craig, and per the schedule, only two of them will be going in that year. Should be a hell of a 1934 election . . .

Not quite at that level, but Cochrane, Hornsby, Frisch retiring in 1937 is no joke either.

Other amazing classes:

1917: Wagner, Plank, Crawford, Evers, Walsh (WOW!)
   65. DanG Posted: November 08, 2002 at 03:46 PM (#511008)
Marc:
   66. DanG Posted: November 08, 2002 at 04:16 PM (#511009)
From the thirdbase thread, September 16:

"And regarding Minoso, he was a strange case. His major league career ended in 1964. For some reason, the BBWAA put him on the ballot after only a four-year wait. He received 6 votes in 1969 and then disappeared from the ballot. This was strange, because in the days before the 5% rule players normally would remain on the ballot with this level of support. Larry Doby is a similar story, receiving 7 votes in 1966 and 10 in 1967 before disappearing. By comparison, Bobby Thomson also received six votes in 1969 and continued on the ballot, drawing from 3 to 11 votes annually, until the 5% rule knocked him off in 1979. Vic Wertz stayed on the ballot, receiving from 2 to 5 votes every year from 1970-78.

Minoso remained off the ballot, then made token appearances in 1976 and 1980. The BBWAA reinstated him in 1986 and he received decent support until he had exhausted his 15 tries at election. He now appears on the 200-man ballot for the new VC.

I always though it was kind of ridiculous in the late 90's for the BBWAA to be considering him, when most of the voters by then had never seen him play in his prime. If they followed the Hall rules that allow eligibility up to twenty years after retirement, he would have been off the ballot after 1984. His appearances in 1976 and 1980 were post-career stunts that should not have restarted the eligibility clock.
   67. scruff Posted: November 08, 2002 at 05:04 PM (#511010)
Agreed w/you completely on Minoso Dan. I think Minoso, Torre, Santo and Deacon White are the best players not in, and White didn't even make the new ballot (not a surprise). I'm very curious to see how the new electorate handles Minoso.
   68. Rob Wood Posted: November 08, 2002 at 09:01 PM (#511011)
I want to get further clarification on a point that may prove important for a few players. Since Negro League players are eligible it is clear that non-MLB accomplishments are germaine. I want to make sure that this extends to MLB players as well. Such as minor league performance (or negro league performance) for players who played in the majors.

A well-known case is Lefty Grove being a minor league star for many years pitching essentially at a major league level. I know that Grove will easily make the HOM cut, but others of lesser credentials may be in the same position. Another case would be Roy Campanella's negro league seasons embellishing his MLB accomplishments. I hope to consider each player's complete portfolio, and somehow translate non-MLB accomplishments into MLB levels where appropriate. Okay?
   69. Rob Wood Posted: November 09, 2002 at 10:05 PM (#511013)
I am re-posting since I omitted Joe Morgan when I transcribed my list of retirees to the message board. I will also add a bunch of additional third-tier guys that I omitted originally.

1901: Cupid Childs, Nig Cuppy, Billy Hamilton, Elmer Smith, Guy Weyhing
   70. Rob Wood Posted: November 10, 2002 at 12:01 AM (#511014)
Here's a post to chew on. I have carefully reviewed the results of my mock HOM elections. I simulated the 1906-2006 ballots, covering 101 elections with 230 HOM selections.

My overarching concern is that we may have opened the door too wide. All the usual suspects who "should" be in the Hall of Fame made my version of the HOM. Guys like Dick Allen, Ron Santo, Bobby Grich, Bert Blyleven, Deacon White, Bill Dahlen, and Gary Carter waltzed right in (all were either first or second ballot selections). For that I am happy.

However, tons of guys I did not anticipate making the HOM were selected as well. Guys like Babe Herman, Wally Berger, Joe Medwick, Virgil Trucks, Eddie Yost, Urban Shocker, Bob Johnson, Joe Gordon, Stan Hack, Charlie Keller, Spud Chandler, Jimmy Ryan, Sherry Magee, Babe Adams, Bob Elliott, Sal Maglie, Billy Pierce, Nellie Fox, Ken Boyer, Don Drysdale, Jim Bunning, Bobby Bonds, Tony Perez, Orlando Cepeda, Joe Torre, Jimmy Wynn, Rusty Staub, Reggie Smith, Ron Cey, Buddy Bell, Fred Lynn, Rick Reuschel, Brian Downing, Willie Randolph, Dave Stieb, Dave Parker, Dwight Evans, Andre Dawson, Tommy John, Ted Simmons, Keith Hernandez, Jack Clark, Rich Gossage, Tom Henke, Darryl Strawberry, Albert Belle, Will Clark, and John Wetteland.

Now each one of these guys was a great player; after all it was I who voted them in the HOM. But in my own estimation many of these guys do not deserve to be in the Hall of Fame (I am conservative when it comes to the Hall of Fame). So you can imagine my surprise when they ALL made the HOM. I was originally under the impression that the HOM would be more restrictive. Now I am not so sure.

I should point out that I did not vote for any Negro League stars in my mock elections (other than those who played MLB). I suppose that around 20 or so of the above list of players will be "replaced" in the HOM by the top negro league stars. But that still leaves a boatload of guys from the above list who I wonder about.

I tried to be fair to 19th century players. Yet 29 players who were on the original ballot (retired before 1901) eventually were elected to my HOM. Believe it or not Ed McKean made the HOM in 2005 on his 100th ballot! So it looks like I may have been generous to 19th century players. If I hadn't been I hate to think of the quality of 20th century players I would have had to elect.

In case you are wondering, the specific makeup of the ballots (i.e., how many true superstars are on each ballot) did not have a significant influence on my ultimate HOM, largely because players never run out of eligibility.

So what am I saying? I am not exactly sure. But maybe we should re-examine the total number of HOM'ers to make sure that it reflects what we want. Maybe there have been so many poor Hall of Fame selections over the years that using that number as a guide may lead to unintended consequences for the HOM.
   71. Howie Menckel Posted: November 10, 2002 at 01:09 AM (#511015)
I still feel like the guy at the party who's dressed conventionally while everyone else is dressed like it's a costume ball. To wit:

WHEN does voting begin?
   72. Marc Posted: November 10, 2002 at 07:31 PM (#511016)
Rob, can you give us some examples of players in the real HOF who did not make your mock HOM?

Also if you elected as many mock HOMers (excluding Negro Leaguers) as there are players in the HOF (INcluding Negro Leaguers) then this is misleading. If you only elected as many MLBers as there are MLBers in the real HOF, which of your "surprise" honorees would be out? You have about 40 you list as surprises and indicate maybe half of them would be out.

So what I'm asking is a full list of the real INs and OUTs as compared to the HOF after accounting for Negro Leaguers. Maybe the surprises would be fewer in number and magnitude than what your post above indicates???

Howie, find a post by scruff and click on "email." Send him an email asking to be on the voter list. That's how it worked for me.
   73. Rob Wood Posted: November 10, 2002 at 09:39 PM (#511017)
I used the voting schedule that Scruff previously posted to tell me how many HOM'ers will be elected each year. I believe the total number includes all the Negro League HOF selections (and maybe some of the pioneer selections) and that the HOM will catch the HOF in numbers around 2000.

In any event, I did not include the Negro Leaguers in my mock deliberations since I know so little about them. I don't know what year these guys would enter the ballot, and I don't have statistical information on them that I can readily compare to MLB players. Of course, I will definitely vote for guys like Oscar Charleston and Josh Gibson when the time comes. But I have no idea how many negro leaguers will make the HOM (my wild guess is 10-20).

I have a comprehensive database of all 20th century players who played for 10 or more MLB seasons. Years ago I developed a system that I used to evaluate each of these players and give them a score. These were the scores that I used to conduct my mock elections.

Anyway, here is the list of HOF'ers that did not make my mock HOM (though a few came close and conceivably still could as HOM time marches forward): Frank Chance, George Kelly, Johnny Evers, Red Schoendienst, Dave Bancroft, Travis Jackson, Phil Rizzuto, Joe Sewell, Joe Tinker, George Kell, Fred Lindstrom, Pie Traynor, Lou Brock, Chick Hafey, Heinie Manush, Earle Combs, Hugh Duffy, Lloyd Waner, Harry Hooper, Tommy McCarthy, Sam Rice, Roger Bresnahan, Rick Ferrell, Ernie Lombardi, Ray Schalk, Chief Bender, Jack Chesbro, Burleigh Grimes, Jesse Haines, Waite Hoyt, Jim Hunter, Rube Marquard, Joe McGinnity, Herb Pennock, Vic Willis.
   74. Marc Posted: November 10, 2002 at 10:37 PM (#511018)
Rob, you raise an excellent point, though I also feel that the players who made it into your HoM are not so egregiously unqualified if you cut half of them out. In other words, if we do our work well, half or more of them will be replaced by Negro Leaguers. In other words, Virgil Trucks, Babe Adams, Sal Maglie, Ron Cey, Rick Reuschel, Tom Henke and Brian Downing are not really going to slide in. And what's left by your ratings is Dick Allen, Ron Santo, Bobby Grich, Bert Blyleven, Deacon White, Bill Dahlen, Gary Carter, Wally Berger, Joe Gordon, Stan Hack, Charlie Keller, Jimmy Ryan, Sherry Magee, Ken Boyer, Joe Torre, Jimmy Wynn, Dave Parker, Dwight Evans, Andre Dawson, Tommy John, Ted Simmons, Keith Hernandez and Will Clark replacing Frank Chance, George Kelly, Johnny Evers, Travis Jackson, Phil Rizzuto, Joe Tinker, George
   75. MattB Posted: November 11, 2002 at 01:23 AM (#511019)
Rob,

Without running through a mock-election, the Top 200 MLB players (not including Negro Leaguers), would mean approximately the Top 20 at each position, plus 40 pitchers. Less than 20, if there are more than 40 pitchers or more than 20 or so Negro Leaguers. That's the top 1-2 per decade at each position. It's possible that, when looking at players from a full historical perspective, players than we previously thought were "B players" turn out to be a lot better.

If the end result is the 22nd best shortstop in history makes the HoM, I wouldn't see that as a flaw.
   76. DanG Posted: November 11, 2002 at 06:05 AM (#511020)
An excerpt from the thread "Welcome to the Hall of Merit":

I posted this comment:

"To this end, including Negro leaguers would help us gain acceptance, being fair and PC and all. I'm just not sure they can be accurately compaired in the same balloting with the white leaguers. With the regular Majors, we have the data to make our own studies of players; for the Negroes we would all be in thrall to the opinions of the few experts who have attempted a comprehensive study of the issue."

The response:

"Posted 11:40 p.m., January 11, 2002 - RobertDudek
   77. Rob Wood Posted: November 13, 2002 at 12:46 AM (#511024)
According to the schedule I used (the schedule Scruff had posted previously, I thought) there were 4 selections in my mock 1906 HOM balloting. The four guys who I voted in were Roger Connor, Cap Anson, King Kelly, and Dan Brouthers. John Clarkson was voted into my HOM in the following 1907 balloting.
   78. MattB Posted: November 22, 2002 at 10:21 PM (#511026)
After looking at some of the photos on the 18th Century Players on the Yahoo! Group, what does everyone think about a "No Players With Moustaches" Rule?

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