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Monday, December 26, 2011

Chimelis: Baseball Hall of Fame final four: Bagwell, Morris, Larkin, McGriff

Keri, Burley, Sager and Tango. Nothing to see here, just move along. (gulp)

Now, for the many borderliners I rejected:

...Tim Raines. My first instinct was to vote for Raines, who ranks fifth all-time in steals with 808.

Unlike saves, steals have been been meaningful for 140 years. Raines had six straight 70-steal seasons.

He had a cocaine problem early in his career. I could get past that.

Raines played 23 years. I don’t think that would have happened had he not kicked the habit - and if he did beat the demon, good for him.

But if Raines gets in because he is fifth in steals, what about Vince Coleman, who is sixth?

That’s why I talked myself out of it.

 

Repoz Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:46 AM | 36 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: expos, hall of fame, history, sabermetrics

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   1. Baldrick Posted: December 26, 2011 at 08:05 AM (#4023444)
But if Raines gets in because he is fifth in steals, what about Vince Coleman, who is sixth?

GIGO.
   2. Jacob Posted: December 26, 2011 at 11:57 AM (#4023457)
Hmmm...He makes it sound like other than the small difference in steals (Raines 808, Coleman 752), the players are basically identical. Just a few stats:

Raines: OPS+ 123 TB 3771, 2605 Hits
Coleman: OPS+ 83 TB 1863, 1425 Hits

Also, just because the guy who is 5th in steals gets in, it doesn't mean the man who's 6th should. Perhaps, that could be the cutoff.

Note: The top 4 SB leaders are all in the HoF.
   3. Eugene Freedman Posted: December 26, 2011 at 12:46 PM (#4023458)
Maurice Ronald Chimelis aka Mo Ron.
   4. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: December 26, 2011 at 03:22 PM (#4023471)
But if Raines gets in because he is fifth in steals, what about Vince Coleman, who is sixth?


I agree. If the reason you're voting for Raines is because of the steals, then Vince Coleman should go in.

But, of course, that isn't why Raines should be in the Hall of Fame.

And the reasons why Raines should be in the Hall dwarf Vince Coleman...
   5. LargeBill Posted: December 26, 2011 at 03:48 PM (#4023475)
"A lot of people are unsold on Morris, but my reasons were unchanged.

Beyond his 254 wins, he was the staff ace on almost every one of his teams. He was tremendous in pressure games, including postseason, and that should count."

Wow, is Morris' case that weak that he can't come up with anything more than his number of career wins? Pretty pathetic. A win is a team stat and only someone with a minimal understanding of the game thinks pitchers should be ranked based on whether their team scored more than the other team. However, even if someone foolishly regards wins as the end all to be all, how do Morris' 254 wins stack up? Oh wait that's 42nd all time? Or to put it another way it is behind Jamie Moyer at 36th all time and further behind Jim Kaat and Tommy John. To use his "logic" for excluding Raines from the ballot, if you vote for a very average pitcher like Morris who is 42 all time in wins . . . .

There are better pitchers with more wins not in the Hall of Fame as well as several much better pitchers with less wins. If you reduce player's careers down to one stat (win or stolen base) you are invariably going to look foolish. Just as the differences between Moyer, Morris and Martinez is more complex than their win total, the difference between Raines and Coleman can't be explained by career stolen base total.
   6. cv2002 Posted: December 26, 2011 at 03:57 PM (#4023476)
Basing a player's HoF worthiness on stolen base totals is stupid, obviously, but I was curious whether Raines outclassed Coleman in stolen base percentage. Turns out he did, but not nearly as bad as I would have guessed:

Raines 85% (808/954)
Coleman 81% (752/929)
   7. Jacob Posted: December 26, 2011 at 04:00 PM (#4023477)
In his defense, he did say he looked "Beyond his 254 wins".

Ducks*
   8. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: December 26, 2011 at 04:17 PM (#4023481)
Beyond his 254 wins, he was the staff ace on almost every one of his teams. He was tremendous in pressure games, including postseason, and that should count."


It sounds like he's supporting Morris for the same reasons people supported Catfish Hunter. These would be silly reasons in HOM voting, but HOF is more about narrative than merit. I can see why a sportswriter would like these reasons, just like I can see why an analyst wouldn't.

I've no idea why he's not voting for Raines. His argument seems to be that Raines was a great basestealer, but not all great basestealers are HOF material. Therefore Raines is Socrates. It's as though Raines would have stood a better chance if he were a worse basestealer.
   9. Wins Above Paul Westerberg Posted: December 26, 2011 at 04:34 PM (#4023483)
I've no idea why he's not voting for Raines. His argument seems to be that Raines was a great basestealer, but not all great basestealers are HOF material. Therefore Raines is Socrates.

A: Socrates is a man. B: All men are mortal. C: All men are Socrates. That means all men are homosexuals. I'm not a homosexual. Once, some Cossacks whistled at me. I happen to have the kind of body that excites both persuasions.
   10. something like a train wreck Posted: December 26, 2011 at 04:41 PM (#4023487)
Beyond his 254 wins, he was the staff ace on almost every one of his teams. He was tremendous in pressure games, including postseason, and that should count.


It is asinine to dismiss these reasons as meaningless. I don't think that Morris is a HOFer. I also understand that the "pressure game" point is factually debatable (though not indefensible). But it means something that year after year, three good managers on very good teams thought that Morris was their best pitcher, and that that wasn't a problem. I don't recall anyone saying "the Tigers need a real ace." Jamie Moyer's managers never thought that for one day, let alone a decade+.
   11. JRVJ Posted: December 26, 2011 at 04:51 PM (#4023491)
Let's try to be positive here.

Any writer who is on the fence regarding Raines' going in the HoF is a writer that can be convinced that Raines has to go in the HoF.

Instead of btching at this guy, let's start working on him (in case Raines doesn't get in this year).
   12. John DiFool2 Posted: December 26, 2011 at 05:17 PM (#4023501)
Beyond his 254 wins, he was the staff ace on almost every one of his teams.


Funny how everyone seems to have forgotten about Dan Petry. From 1980-1985:

Morris: 102-73, 3.61 ERA, 1505 IP, 541 BB 915 K 15.9 WAR

Petry: 87-59, 3.46 ERA, 1290 IP, 486 BB 674 K 17.6 WAR

Petry beats him in WAR in 2 of the 6 years. Overall yes, Morris was better, but not that much better. Yet after Petry got injured (?) and lost effectiveness, he mysteriously escaped everyone's memory, even tho during the Tiger's timeless 1984 he and Morris were perceived as twin aces of the staff.
   13. Jacob Posted: December 26, 2011 at 05:25 PM (#4023504)
even tho during the Tiger's timeless 1984 he and Morris were perceived as twin aces of the staff.


There can't be two "aces"! Have you gone mad?
   14. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: December 26, 2011 at 05:48 PM (#4023512)
A: Socrates is a man. B: All men are mortal. C: All men are Socrates. That means all men are homosexuals. I'm not a homosexual. Once, some Cossacks whistled at me. I happen to have the kind of body that excites both persuasions.


But judgment of any system or a priori relation of phenomena exists in any rational or metaphysical or at least epistemological contradiction to an abstracted empirical concept such as being or to be or to occur in the thing itself or of the thing itself.
   15. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 26, 2011 at 05:53 PM (#4023513)
I've got some issues with that WAR calc. Seems like replacement level is a little high - 15-14, with 215 extra iP, 4.51 ERA (admittedly high for that era), 55 BB and 241 K is worth 1.7 fewer WAR. Not a chance in hell.
   16. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:01 PM (#4023517)
Morris made 3 all-star teams, in that date range, Petry made one and not until 1985.

Morris had 2 thirds and a seventh in the CY Young voting, Petry a 9th and a 5th. Morris got MVP votes 2x, Petry not so much.

Those two were never perceived as twin aces. I dont think Morris should be in the Hall of Fame, but let's not overstate the case.
   17. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:05 PM (#4023521)

But if Raines gets in because he is fifth in steals, what about Vince Coleman, who is sixth?


BABE RUTH HAS 2873 HITS, 40TH OF ALL-TIME. BUT IF HE GETS IN BECAUSE HE IS 40TH IN HITS, WHAT ABOUT HAROLD BAINES WHO IS 41ST????
   18. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:09 PM (#4023522)
But it means something that year after year, three good managers on very good teams thought that Morris was their best pitcher, and that that wasn't a problem.


I guess so, but how many other guys can you say that about? Dave Stieb. Dennis Martinez. Orel Hershiser. Mark Langston. Dennis Leonard. Steve Rogers. I'm sure it means something, but I think its the equivalent of Joe Carter hitting cleanup for every team he ever played for and racking up big RBI totals.
   19. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:09 PM (#4023523)
BABE RUTH HAS 2873 HITS, 40TH OF ALL-TIME. BUT IF HE GETS IN BECAUSE HE IS 40TH IN HITS, WHAT ABOUT HAROLD BAINES WHO IS 41ST????

Babe Ruth has 714 HR, 3rd of all time. But if he gets in because he is 3rd in HR, what about Barry Bonds who is 1st?
   20. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:14 PM (#4023526)
BABE RUTH HAS 2873 HITS, 40TH OF ALL-TIME. BUT IF HE GETS IN BECAUSE HE IS 40TH IN HITS, WHAT ABOUT HAROLD BAINES WHO IS 41ST????


Excellent.
   21. cardsfanboy Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:31 PM (#4023539)
Wow, is Morris' case that weak that he can't come up with anything more than his number of career wins?


Yes Morris's case is that weak.
   22. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:34 PM (#4023540)
I happen to have the kind of body that excites both persuasions.


It's nice to have options.
   23. cardsfanboy Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:53 PM (#4023546)
he was the staff ace on almost every one of his teams.


No he wasn't, he pitched 18 seasons, performed like the staff ace on six of his teams, and debateably was the ace on 3 other teams....

1980 Morris(although third in team era among starters)
1981 take your pick, Morris, Wilcox, Petry, I'll take Morris on the strength of his complete games
1982 Petry is the ace,
1983 Morris is the ace
1984 Petry is the ace
1985 Morris barely edges out Petry
1986 Morris with his most clear victory.
1987 Morris with another clear victory
1988 Morris or Walt Terrell,
1989 Tanana...Morris isn't in the conversation
1990 Morris by default, his 4.51 era/89 era+ is the only pitcher to go a complete season as a starter.
1991 Tapani and Ericson clearly ahead of Morris.
1992 Key is the better choice, but sportswriters will go with Morris because of his 21 wins, Guzman was the teams best pitcher that year.
1993, he's a fifth starter and pitched like it.
1994 same as 1993.

He's the team ace so frequently because his team wasn't that good(from 1975-1986 Bob Forsch was the team ace four times for the Cardinals... Morris 6 times isn't that impressive, if your team doesn't have good pitching---heck Schilling finished well in Cy Young awards a few times and probably wasn't his team ace.)
   24. cardsfanboy Posted: December 26, 2011 at 06:56 PM (#4023548)
I've got some issues with that WAR calc. Seems like replacement level is a little high - 15-14, with 215 extra iP, 4.51 ERA (admittedly high for that era), 55 BB and 241 K is worth 1.7 fewer WAR. Not a chance in hell.


Replacement level is WAY too high for war. It's a known flaw with the system, making war only useful as a tool if you are comparing two players from the same team, it gets much worse as you move through years or onto different teams. At that point in time, use era+, ip and live with it.
   25. cardsfanboy Posted: December 26, 2011 at 07:00 PM (#4023550)
It is asinine to dismiss these reasons as meaningless.


Why? 254 wins is not something that makes you a hofer. It's how you get to those 254 wins that matters, and Morris is the text book definition of a compiler. He's a slightly above average pitcher who didn't get hurt, who pitched for good offensive teams.

If any manager thought Morris was a better pitcher than Tapani, Key or Guzman, they should be fired for Incompetence, heck if they thought he was clearly better than Petry they are lying.
   26. Something Other Posted: December 26, 2011 at 07:09 PM (#4023559)
@11: I suppose, but holy @@@@. This clown had a vote, has a vote, and will continue to have a vote. That's depressing.
   27. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 26, 2011 at 07:36 PM (#4023578)
I've got some issues with that WAR calc. Seems like replacement level is a little high - 15-14, with 215 extra iP, 4.51 ERA (admittedly high for that era), 55 BB and 241 K is worth 1.7 fewer WAR. Not a chance in hell.

You should have issues with it - the values were switched. Morris had 17.6 WAR, Petry 15.9.
   28. Walt Davis Posted: December 26, 2011 at 07:58 PM (#4023584)
15-14, with 215 extra iP, 4.51 ERA (admittedly high for that era), 55 BB and 241 K is worth 1.7 fewer WAR. Not a chance in hell.

The K/BB does make that unlikely but a 4.51 ERA for that era (I used 1984) is about an 87 ERA+ which is right around replacement level. Putting up an 87 ERA+ with a 4.5 K/BB requires an awful lot of "pitching to the score." :-)

Morris did give up 26 more HR in those 215 innings which is a lot for the era.

making war only useful as a tool if you are comparing two players from the same team

Which is exactly what is being done here.
   29. Morty Causa Posted: December 26, 2011 at 07:58 PM (#4023585)
How many outfielders from Raines's era should be considered for the HOF, and where does he rank among those outfielders?
   30. LargeBill Posted: December 26, 2011 at 09:17 PM (#4023620)
I wrote this voter a polite email explaining how comparing Raines to Coleman has little merit as Raines reached base more than twice as many times. I further explained how his reasoning on Raines actually makes his Morris vote more perplexing. He took the time to write back. I don't have permission to copy his email, but basically he made the case that all the writers he knows take the vote very seriously and said he will give both Raines and Morris another look next year. We will not all be in agreement, but all I ask is they give each player's entire career a thorough review each year.
   31. TDF, situational idiot Posted: December 26, 2011 at 09:23 PM (#4023622)
Morris made 3 all-star teams, in that date range, Petry made one and not until 1985.

Morris had 2 thirds and a seventh in the CY Young voting, Petry a 9th and a 5th. Morris got MVP votes 2x, Petry not so much.

Those two were never perceived as twin aces. I dont think Morris should be in the Hall of Fame, but let's not overstate the case.
I lived in Detoit at that time. I'm not a Tigers' fan, but among my many friends who were, they were seen as "twin aces" until Petry fell off the cliff.
   32. DanG Posted: December 26, 2011 at 11:06 PM (#4023663)
Let's look at win shares

1979 Morris 17 - Billingham 12
1980 Morris 14 - Schatzeder 11
1981 Morris 16 - Wilcox 13
1982 Petry 18 - Morris 14
1983 Morris 20 - Petry 14
1984 Petry 16 - Morris 14
1985 Morris 19 - Petry 17
1986 Morris 20 - King 11
1987 Morris 21 - Terrell 16
1988 Robinson 14 - Morris 12
1989 Tanana 12 - Morris 4
1990 Morris 8 - Petry 6
1991 Tapani 21 - Morris 18 - Ericson 18
1992 Guzman 17 - Morris 15

So win shares rates Morris as the ace in 8 seasons. I have never put much stock in "best of a bad lot" arguments.
   33. DanG Posted: December 26, 2011 at 11:19 PM (#4023667)
How many outfielders from Raines's era should be considered for the HOF, and where does he rank among those outfielders?
Quick and dirty.

Debut 1970-92, 1000+ G in OF

Rk             Player WAR/pos6 OPS+    PA From   To    G    R  RBI
1         Barry Bonds    171.8  181 12606 1986 2007 2986 2227 1996
2    Rickey Henderson    113.1  127 13346 1979 2003 3081 2295 1115 H
3         Ken Griffey     78.5  135 11304 1989 2010 2671 1662 1836
4         Robin Yount     76.9  115 12249 1974 1993 2856 1632 1406 H
5          Tony Gwynn     68.4  132 10232 1982 2001 2440 1383 1138 H
6        Larry Walker     67.3  140  8030 1989 2005 1988 1355 1311
7        Kenny Lofton     65.3  107  9234 1991 2007 2103 1528  781
8          Tim Raines     64.6  123 10359 1979 2002 2502 1571  980
9      Gary Sheffield     63.3  140 10947 1988 2009 2576 1636 1676
10       Dwight Evans     61.8  127 10569 1972 1991 2606 1470 1384
11         Sammy Sosa     59.7  128  9896 1989 2007 2354 1475 1667
12      Dave Winfield     59.7  130 12358 1973 1995 2973 1669 1833 H
13       Andre Dawson     57.0  119 10769 1976 1996 2627 1373 1591 H
14         Jack Clark     55.0  137  8225 1975 1992 1994 1118 1180
15          Jose Cruz     52.2  120  8931 1970 1988 2353 1036 1077
16       Cesar Cedeno     52.2  123  8133 1970 1986 2006 1084  976
17         Chet Lemon     49.9  120  7872 1975 1990 1988  973  884
18        Ellis Burks     47.9  126  8176 1987 2004 2000 1253 1206
19    Bernie Williams     47.3  125  9053 1991 2006 2076 1366 1257
20          Fred Lynn     47.3  129  7923 1974 1990 1969 1063 1111
21       Brett Butler     46.5  110  9545 1981 1997 2213 1359  578
22      Luis Gonzalez     46.3  118 10531 1990 2008 2591 1412 1439
23      Kirby Puckett     44.8  124  7831 1984 1995 1783 1071 1085 H
24        Dale Murphy     44.2  121  9040 1976 1993 2180 1197 1266 
   34. Walt Davis Posted: December 27, 2011 at 02:53 AM (#4023729)
Interesting how many CFs are at the bottom of that list -- of the last 9, 8 were primarily CF.

The easiest way to look at Raines is that he was Gwynn with walks instead of singles (and, to an extent, stolen bases instead of doubles).

If anybody's wondering about Lofton, Chone loves loves loves his defense -- +112 runs -- and speed related offense -- + 114 runs. He appears to be one of five who are 100+ on both (Willie Wilson, Aparicio, Ozzie and Willie Davis). Wilson is a bit of a cheat as he played a lot of LF -- take out his positional adjustment and he's under 100 in Rfield.
   35. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: December 27, 2011 at 07:02 PM (#4023919)
I cut the line at Dawson, but could see going as low as Cruz on that list
   36. toratoratora Posted: December 27, 2011 at 07:28 PM (#4023931)
When Lofton is one and done, it's gonna be a shame.
Sitting pretty between Raines and Walker's not a bad place to be.

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