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Sunday, January 08, 2012

Clubhouse Confidential: HOF Roundtable

Video is at the link.

Brian Kenny hosts.  Jay Jaffe, Joe Sheehan, and Jon Heyman are members of the roundtable.

Xander Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:41 AM | 37 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: general

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   1. Repoz Posted: January 08, 2012 at 08:38 AM (#4031552)
Unfortunato, the last five minutes of the dazzling Heyman steroidal take-down by Sheehen is cut off.
   2. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 08:40 AM (#4031553)
Also in that link: President of the HOF does a "nothing to see here" when Kenny asks him if he's worried that future BBWAA elections will not produce many HOFers due to the steroids snafu.

The link omits the full discussion of Bagwell and steroids. Not sure why.

Heyman does deserve credit for standing in with these guys, and he's not horrible all the time, but his Jack Morris reasoning was and I understand (it's omitted) his Bagwell-steroids reasoning as well.

I thought Sheehan shot himself in the foot by calling Morris an "average pitcher" during his heyday with the Tigers. And I say this as someone who doesn't think Morris belongs in the HOF. Morris had an average ERA+ for his career (slightly above, actually, which matters), but for many years with the Tigers was a GOOD pitcher -- just not a great one. He was posting good ERA+s and was fairly durable. Even an average ERA+ for his career, with his decent durability, leaves him as a good pitcher. This was live tv, and I think Sheehan would replace the word "average" with the word "good" if he could have a do-over. Heyman rightly beat him over the head with it; average pitchers don't post 40 WAR.
   3. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 08, 2012 at 09:50 AM (#4031559)
Heyman does deserve credit for standing in with these guys, and he's not horrible all the time, but his Jack Morris reasoning was and I understand (it's omitted) his Bagwell-steroids reasoning as well.

Does anyone who watched that zapped segment remember what Heyman actually said? Not that it matters for this year's ballot, but did he indicate that he might change his mind, as Henning did? Or was it "Once you look suspicious, that's all I need to know"?
   4. BDC Posted: January 08, 2012 at 10:30 AM (#4031567)
Good point, Ray. Now, Milt Wilcox was an average pitcher. (Heck, in his years with the Tigers, even Milt Wilcox was comfortably above average.) Vern Ruhle was an average pitcher for the Tigers in the 70s. One needs some perspective on this. There are a lot of good pitchers who don't reach Hall of Fame standards.
   5. Repoz Posted: January 08, 2012 at 10:41 AM (#4031570)
Does anyone who watched that zapped segment remember what Heyman actually said?

The one part I recall was after Joe lowered the "more scrubinies did steroids than all-stars...and where are their HR's?" boom on Heyman.

Heyman said something like..."Yeah, but they're not on the Hall of Fame ballot"
   6. Lassus Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4031579)
Someone should start a level of public social media campaign to get those minutes back.

Maybe Calcaterra or Szym could call them out on it?
   7. Tippecanoe Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:31 AM (#4031581)
decent durability


fairly durable


Not to disagree with the overall point but since you said this twice...Morris has a nine year run (1980-1988) where he essentially misses no starts. He started only 24 times in 1989, then adds three more seasons where he answers the call every time. So he's missing maybe 12-15 starts over a 13-year period, and he pitched an above average number of innings per start. His durability was excellent.
   8. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:35 AM (#4031584)
Couldn't we just reconstruct the missing conversation by examining Bob Haldeman's notes?
   9. Repoz Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:38 AM (#4031585)
Someone should start a level of public social media campaign to get those minutes back.

Brian Kenny said that Clubhouse Confidential will be playing a "Best Of" series during the weekend...so maybe....
   10. Xander Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:10 PM (#4031596)
Brian Kenny said that Clubhouse Confidential will be playing a "Best Of" series during the weekend...so maybe....
Near full portions of the first and last segment of the show will be included in the "Best Of" show. These are the segments that included the most discussion about the individual candidates. The Idelson interview and the steroid segment will not be in the "Best Of" show. It airs tonight for the first time at 8:30 ET and repeats throughout the night.
   11. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:28 PM (#4031602)
Not to disagree with the overall point but since you said this twice...Morris has a nine year run (1980-1988) where he essentially misses no starts. He started only 24 times in 1989, then adds three more seasons where he answers the call every time. So he's missing maybe 12-15 starts over a 13-year period, and he pitched an above average number of innings per start. His durability was excellent.


That's fair enough; maybe I short-changed him a little there. I was looking more at innings than starts. And he looks a bit worse from that perspective:

Times among league leaders in starts:
Top 10: 11
Top 5: 8
1st: 2

Times among league leaders in innings:
Top 10: 9
Top 5: 7
1st: 1

---------------

I like how in that clip Jaffe says "Well, Joe did the research; it shows that Morris did not pitch to the score." And Heyman responds with "I've done research too, I've talked to people..."

   12. Rally Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:28 PM (#4031603)
Good point on Morris being a very good pitcher. Sometimes we lose perspective when we're arguing against his HOF case all the time. The standards are just so incredibly high. Guys like Bob Gibson and Jim Palmer are HOFers. Guys like, say Kevin Appier are not.

People like Morris, Saberhagen, Hershiser, Cone, and Kevin Brown are in the middle. Morris is not A's good A's the other 4 in that sentence, so if they are rejected, he must be rejected as well. And none of them even received serious consideration.
   13. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:46 PM (#4031611)
Yeah, Sheehan's use of the words "average pitcher" was an overbid. Again, I think he'd probably concede that his word choice was poor.
   14. Javy Joan Baez (chris h.) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 12:47 PM (#4031613)
Does anyone who watched that zapped segment remember what Heyman actually said?

I still have it on my DVR. I won't get a chance to watch it until tonight, but I'll happily transcribe it and post the transcription here.
   15. Lassus Posted: January 08, 2012 at 01:17 PM (#4031618)
I still have it on my DVR. I won't get a chance to watch it until tonight, but I'll happily transcribe it and post the transcription here.

YOUTUBE!
   16. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: January 08, 2012 at 01:52 PM (#4031646)
Sheesh, it took me 30 seconds to find the "missing minutes" on YouTube ... Maybe?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c0mvgI0F1YU&feature=related
   17. Walt Davis Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:01 PM (#4031656)
Well, in theory, a durable average pitcher would hit 40 WAR probably around 3500-4000 innings. But I agree Morris was above-average.

But some examples which might have you rethinking that :-)

Rick Wise, 3100 IP, 101 ERA+, 35.1 WAR
Claude Osteen, 3460 IP, 104 ERA+, 39.8 WAR
Jack Morris, 3824 IP, 105 ERA+, 39.3 WAR

On #7 and #11: Morris was durable across seasons moreso than within season and it's really the only thing that distinguishes him from his contemporaries (other than Tanana and Martinez and maybe a couple others). Stieb, perhaps unwisely in retrospect, put up 1100 IP over 4 seasons which is 40 IP higher than Morris's biggest 4-year stretch (not a huge difference) but Morris has several 240+ seasons outside of that. As Ray notes, Morris's seasonal IP were always good, but not often near the top.

Morris was in the transition period. Trained more like a 60s-70s workhorse but generally, in terms of both within- and across-season durability, he doesn't measure up to those studs (pretty much nobody did). Compared to the guys who came after, Morris's in-season totals look very good but he was less durable across-seasons and his IP total would look very good but not amazing -- IP total would be 4th (1990 on which misses some of Maddux and especially Clemens) and GS total would be 7th. The problem as we all know is quality. Among pitchers with 3000+ IP from 1990 on, he's tied for 13th in ERA+ with Wakefield. Also 13th in WAR.

He's a close match to Jamie Moyer really which nicely captures the differences in pitcher usage. Moyer has only about 200 more IP but 101 more starts while never starting more than 34 in a season. On the other side, Gibson had just 16 fewer innings in 54 fewer starts. Morris had fewer innings and fewer starts but (I'm fairly sure without looking) more IP/start than contemporaries Tanana and Martinez. The way Morris was used was little/no different than the way other top starters of his era were used but he did handle it longer (than all but a couple of them).
   18. Johnny Slick Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:04 PM (#4031661)
So... "relief pitchers and marginal players took steroids too" is the real 'devastating' argument here? Come on, guys. How do we know if these marginal players would even be marginal if it weren't for the ROIDS? In fact, isn't that like reason #1 why the MLB and all other sports have to look down on steroids and other PEDs, not because a couple of superstars use them to enhance their already grueling workout regimen but because marginal players will begin to feel that they *have* to take these drugs just to have their fair chance in the major leagues?

I mean, I'm otherwise pretty well towards Sheehan's overall philosophy of analysis over Heyman, but I just don't see how this is some MASSIVE takedown or anything similar.
   19. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:08 PM (#4031664)
Well, in theory, a durable average pitcher would hit 40 WAR probably around 3500-4000 innings. But I agree Morris was above-average.


But what I'm saying is that a "durable average pitcher" is a good pitcher.
   20. cardsfanboy Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4031674)
But what I'm saying is that a "durable average pitcher" is a good pitcher.


agreed. We've done this before with Dag Nabbit and the hardball times, but a pitcher who throws 200 innings with an era+ of 100 is a top 40 pitcher nearly every year. We are talking about a guy who is the definition of a number 2 pitcher, that is a good pitcher. I guess if your definition of good is limited to only Cy Young candidates or all stars, then that pitcher doesn't make the cut, but I think that is a really high standard to call someone good.
   21. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:20 PM (#4031676)
Sheesh, it took me 30 seconds to find the "missing minutes" on YouTube ... Maybe?


I like the show, but the problem with the show, as it is with so many tv shows, is format. These topics deserve more than 30 second sound bites that add up to four minutes. Think of how long we spend here discussing the various ins and outs of these issues -- steroids, candidates, etc. A few minutes is enough to make your case, but when you're discussing your case and the opinions of others on the panel, a few minutes is just not enough time.

The producers should consider making the show longer so that the segments aren't rushed, or producing a longer segment available for viewing online, or something. It's not like the MLB Network has so many more useful things to air; it spends half its programming doing things like Bloopers.
   22. michaelplank has knowledgeable eyes Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:37 PM (#4031685)
What Johnny Slick said.
   23. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4031691)
Thanks for posting the full link, dingo. I agree with Ray that it was a bit short, but it was still much better than I expected. I was glad to see Sheehan give Bernie a bit of love, even if I wouldn't vote for him myself.
   24. Stormy JE Posted: January 08, 2012 at 02:47 PM (#4031693)
These topics deserve more than 30 second sound bites that add up to four minutes. Think of how long we spend here discussing the various ins and outs of these issues -- steroids, candidates, etc. A few minutes is enough to make your case, but when you're discussing your case and the opinions of others on the panel, a few minutes is just not enough time.

Well, sure, but barely two months ago we didn't even have this much. CC deserves credit for at least raising these issues.
   25. Rally Posted: January 08, 2012 at 03:04 PM (#4031707)
"But what I'm saying is that a "durable average pitcher" is a good pitcher."

This is true. But also, a guy who is average over 3500-4000 innings is not likely to be average the whole time. Most likely he has a peak in there of well above average pitching. If he then hangs on for, say, 750 innings of 90 Era+, I don't see him as any less than a similar pitcher who goes out on top.
   26. Srul Itza At Home Posted: January 08, 2012 at 03:33 PM (#4031733)
I mean, I'm otherwise pretty well towards Sheehan's overall philosophy of analysis over Heyman, but I just don't see how this is some MASSIVE takedown or anything similar.


Concur.

Well, in theory, a durable average pitcher would hit 40 WAR probably around 3500-4000 innings. But I agree Morris was above-average.

But some examples which might have you rethinking that :-)

Rick Wise, 3100 IP, 101 ERA+, 35.1 WAR
Claude Osteen, 3460 IP, 104 ERA+, 39.8 WAR
Jack Morris, 3824 IP, 105 ERA+, 39.3 WAR



Consider his prime. From 1979-87, he put up a 116 ERA+, while averaging 33 starts and 220 innings. That is damn fine. Not HOF good, of course, but way beyond average for his "heyday"
   27. Srul Itza At Home Posted: January 08, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4031736)
I was glad to see Sheehan give Bernie a bit of love, even if I wouldn't vote for him myself.


Of course, it is hard to take him seriously as a sabrist when he pushes for Bernie that hard. Jay Jaffe came off the best, I thought.
   28. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 03:44 PM (#4031742)
So... "relief pitchers and marginal players took steroids too" is the real 'devastating' argument here? Come on, guys.


It's one point among many. And it's a very strong one.

How do we know if these marginal players would even be marginal if it weren't for the ROIDS?


If you're trying to make a convincing argument that steroids have this massive impact, it is your burden to establish that marginal players would NOT have been marginal but for the steroids.

You're supposed to demonstrate the effect, that steroids have a massive impact. Sheehan's point is one **in rebuttal** to the claim that steroids have this massive impact.

You can't just make claim X entirely without support, and then when someone brings up Y in rebuttal, start screaming for THAT person to show support to in order to disprove your premise. Or you can do that, but it's not very convincing.

What if I said "Lemonade has a massive impact on baseball performance. It caused McGwire to hit 70 home runs." And you replied with "I'm not sure about that; look at all the marginal players who drank lemonade also." And then I said "What?! How do we know if these marginal players would even be marginal if it weren't for the LEMONADE?" So rather than supporting my bullsh!t claim, I've now shifted to you the burden to prove my bullsh!t claim false.
   29. cardsfanboy Posted: January 08, 2012 at 03:51 PM (#4031745)
I find myself agreeing with Sheehan on Edgar. Jaffe reevaluation of Trammell is putting too much faith into his defensive system. I just don't see taking Trammell off after having him on for several years.

After watching the linked video, I watched the next video which was a look at 2012 candidates by the numbers. First a minor criticism. They show Raines stealing a base, in which he would have been clearly out if the fielder would have caught the ball, I'm thinking with 800 or so stolen bases to chose from, why did they pick that one? was it because he was wearing a Yankee uniform?

Second, Fred McGriff went 17 seasons with 0 days on the DL. Damn that's impressive. And I wasn't surprised, but I imagine some people would have been surprised to realize that Lee Smith led the league in saves more times than Rivera or Gossage.
   30. DanG Posted: January 08, 2012 at 04:02 PM (#4031753)
Rick Wise, 3100 IP, 101 ERA+, 35.1 WAR
Claude Osteen, 3460 IP, 104 ERA+, 39.8 WAR
Jack Morris, 3824 IP, 105 ERA+, 39.3 WAR
(lop off Morris' last two years)
Jack Morris, 3530 IP, 109 ERA+, 41.4 WAR
   31. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: January 08, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4031754)
How many times does Heyman say variations of "I saw the games" and "I saw him play"?
   32. Ebessan Posted: January 08, 2012 at 04:32 PM (#4031769)
Guys like, say Kevin Appier are not.

Poor Kevin Appier. How many guys have a 1600 IP stretch of 140 ERA+ ball?
   33. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: January 08, 2012 at 05:16 PM (#4031792)
Poor Kevin Appier. How many guys have a 1600 IP stretch of 140 ERA+ ball?

well, this guy had a 1500 IP stretch with a 159 ERA+ (starting at age 30, no less)

(maybe HOF voters are biased against guys named Kevin)
   34. Walt Davis Posted: January 08, 2012 at 07:44 PM (#4031856)
Some of you guys should definitely not go into politics -- a little toss-away joke and I have you trying to prove Morris was better than Wise and Osteen. :-)

And #30 ... you realize that what you're showing is that if you tailor the numbers to favor Morris then, in equal IP, he was a whopping 1.5 wins better than Osteen. :-)

But I agree that a durable average pitcher (and Morris was better than that) is a valuable pitcher.
   35. Rally Posted: January 08, 2012 at 08:01 PM (#4031863)
"Poor Kevin Appier. How many guys have a 1600 IP stretch of 140 ERA+ ball?"

I probably forget how good Appier was. I remember him mostly for the 2002 Angels. His job there was to get through 5 innings with screwing up and turn it over to the bullpen.
   36. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 09, 2012 at 08:06 AM (#4032039)
Appier was the classic guy who you knew would blow out his arm at some point. And since he was blowing batters away you didn't feel the need to tinker with anything.

   37. Chip Posted: January 09, 2012 at 09:28 AM (#4032065)
Since Clemens didn't grow huge muscles or hit 70 HRs, I guess that means Heyman is voting for him? Just following his logic.

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