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Sunday, June 11, 2006

Willie Mays

Eligible in 1979.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: June 11, 2006 at 11:10 PM | 110 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. AndrewJ Posted: June 19, 2006 at 10:06 PM (#2068807)
Something changed in Milwaukee in 1960 whe Aaron suddenly decided to steal a lot of bases. He went from "ran rarely" to 15+ SBs for 9 seasons.

I think it was Braves manager Bobby Bragan who took Aaron aside one season in the early 1960s and told him, "The only reason Willie Mays is considered better than you is because he steals bases. From now on, anytime you get on first and feel like stealing a base, you have the green light."
   102. rico vanian Posted: June 20, 2006 at 03:36 AM (#2069384)
I have Mays with-out military service finishing his career in 1956 with 121 home runs. He was never the same after that horrific broken leg in May 1953 when he slid into 3rd base at the Polo Grounds.
   103. Mefisto Posted: June 20, 2006 at 03:02 PM (#2069602)
I have Mays with-out military service finishing his career in 1956 with 121 home runs. He was never the same after that horrific broken leg in May 1953 when he slid into 3rd base at the Polo Grounds.

Is this your way of telling us that "rico vanian" is just a pseudonym and that your real name is J. Henry Waugh?
   104. baudib Posted: June 21, 2006 at 11:08 AM (#2070551)
Couple thoughts/musings on Mays. I'll try not to state the obvious and insanely redundant.

1. People who saw him have told me that Willie Mays was as good or even better than Jackie Robinson on the bases. It wasn't just that he was fast or that he was smart, but he was fast and smart and an improvisational genius. That he was the only guy in history whose feet and brain and instincts worked together to make him better than any relay throw.

2. I don't think it's mentioned with Mays nearly as much as the WWII guys, but Mays also missed time in the service. Thus, he could have had even more ridiculous career numbers.

3. Even so, I think it is fitting that Mays isn't really tied to one statistic ("755" or "714" or "61" or "56" or ".406"). What he really is, is baseball's unmatched perfect player.

4. I suppose if you were to construct some sort of GREATNESS*DURABILITIY*CONSISTENCY stat, Mays would be at the top of the list, followed by Aaron, Cobb and Musial.
   105. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: June 29, 2007 at 02:43 PM (#2422044)
Were Negro League MLE's ever done for Mays?
   106. Jim Sp Posted: June 29, 2007 at 05:14 PM (#2422252)
Great quote from Bill James (from memory, not an exact quote):

"Now tagging out Willie Mays in a rundown is like trying to run over a squirrel with a lawnmower..."
   107. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: June 30, 2007 at 03:39 PM (#2423788)
Dan,

You should check through this thread and the 1979 discussion thread. My guess is that we thought he was young enough and was in the NgL so early that it was appropriate to say that he would not have likely spent any significant amount of time in the majors prior to his callup during his age-20 season.
   108. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: August 16, 2008 at 05:47 PM (#2905445)
Here's Mays in my system, standard deviation-adjusted, using my war credit regression equations.


Year SFrac  BWAA BRWAA FWAA Replc  WARP
1951  0.80   1.8   0.1  0.7  
-1.1   3.7
1952  0.94   3.5   0.3  1.3  
-1.3   6.4
1953  0.92   4.2   0.2  0.9  
-1.5   6.8
1954  0.98   6.7   0.1  1.9  
-1.5  10.3
1955  1.04   7.2   0.6  0.9  
-1.6  10.3
1956  1.01   4.5   0.6  0.3  
-1.6   7.0
1957  1.02   6.9   0.1 
-0.1  -1.5   8.4
1958  1.05   7.1   0.6  0.8  
-1.6  10.1
1959  1.00   5.6   0.6  0.0  
-1.6   7.8
1960  1.03   6.1   0.3  0.3  
-1.6   8.3
1961  1.02   5.8   0.1 
-0.1  -1.4   7.2
1962  1.03   5.7   0.4  1.2  
-1.3   8.6
1963  1.00   6.7   0.3  0.4  
-1.2   8.5
1964  0.99   6.2   0.4  1.3  
-1.0   8.9
1965  0.94   6.9   0.1  1.6  
-1.1   9.7
1966  0.93   4.4   0.2  1.4  
-1.1   7.1
1967  0.81   2.1   0.3  0.9  
-0.9   4.3
1968  0.86   5.2   0.2  0.3  
-0.9   6.6
1969  0.68   2.1   0.2 
-0.3  -0.7   2.7
1970  0.82   3.7   0.2 
-0.4  -0.9   4.4
1971  0.79   4.8   0.5 
-0.5  -0.9   5.7
1972  0.47   1.6  
-0.2 -0.4  -0.6   1.6
1973  0.35  
-0.5  -0.1  0.1  -0.4   0.0
TOTL 20.48 108.3   6.1 12.5 
-27.3 154.4
AVRG  1.00   5.3   0.3    0.6  
-1.3   7.5 


3-year peak: 30.7
7-year prime: 66.4
Career: 154.4
Salary: $521,495,349 (6th among post-1893 position players; below Cobb and above Speaker.)


However, it's worth noting that both TotalZone and DRA think these numbers sell his fielding short by a good 50 runs from 1956-73, and obviously his reputation bolsters that notion. if I use the average of DRA and TotalZone instead of BP FRAA and Fielding Win Shares, and use Dan Fox's EqBRR for baserunning, I get the following. Note that I am not regressing these defensive stats back to the mean to match the overall Chris Dial Zone Rating standard deviation, so this should be considered somewhat favorable to Mays (and all positive outliers) by definition--19 fielding wins seems like a heck of a lot even for the best defensive CF evar. But here you go:

Year SFrac  BWAA BRWAA FWAA Replc  WARP
1951  0.80   1.9   0.0  0.7  
-1.1   3.7
1952  0.94   3.5   0.3  1.3  
-1.3   6.4
1953  0.92   4.2   0.2  0.9  
-1.5   6.8
1954  0.98   6.8   0.0  1.9  
-1.5  10.3
1955  1.04   7.3   0.5  1.2  
-1.6  10.6
1956  1.01   4.6   0.2  2.0  
-1.6   8.4
1957  1.02   7.0   0.0  0.6  
-1.5   9.1
1958  1.05   7.1   0.6  1.2  
-1.6  10.5
1959  1.00   5.7   0.6  0.2  
-1.6   8.1
1960  1.03   6.2   0.2  0.8  
-1.6   8.8
1961  1.02   5.9   0.2  0.5  
-1.4   8.0
1962  1.03   5.7   0.3  1.6  
-1.3   9.0
1963  1.00   6.9   0.2  0.8  
-1.2   9.0
1964  0.99   6.3   0.5  1.4  
-1.0   9.2
1965  0.94   7.0   0.1  1.0  
-1.1   9.1
1966  0.93   4.5  
-0.2  2.2  -1.1   7.6
1967  0.81   2.2   0.5  1.2  
-0.9   4.9
1968  0.86   5.3   0.3  0.2  
-0.9   6.6
1969  0.68   2.2  
-0.1 -0.2  -0.7   2.5
1970  0.82   3.7   0.3 
-0.4  -0.9   4.5
1971  0.79   4.9   0.5  0.3  
-0.9   6.5
1972  0.47   1.6  
-0.1 -0.4  -0.6   1.7
1973  0.35  
-0.5  -0.1  0.1  -0.4   0.0
TOTL 20.49 110.1   5.0 19.0 
-27.2 161.4
AVRG  1.00   5.4   0.2  0.9  
-1.3   7.9 


3-year peak: 31.4
7-year prime: 67.8
Career: 161.4
Salary: $555,926,690 (Still just short of Cobb at $560M).

The Splendid Splinter, by contrast, is still at $645M. Yes, there's a league strength difference in favor of Mays, but I can't imagine it would be anything close to $90M (which is the career value of a Ken Griffey Sr. or Jesse Barfield).
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