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Friday, February 02, 2018

The Obstacles Lou Whitaker, Bobby Grich, and Dwight Evans Face to be Selected by the Hall of Fame’s Historical Overview Committee to Appear on Future Modern Baseball Era Ballots

The passing over of Whitaker, Grich, and Evans by the Historical Overview Committee is almost certainly due to the lack of support picked up by these candidate in their brief time on the BBWAA ballot, as evidenced by the screening panel’s repeated selections of candidates who lasted the maximum number of years on the writer’s vote.  Indeed, for the recent Modern Baseball Era ballot, the Historical Overview Committee not only chose all four newly eligible candidates whose Hall of Fame cases went the distance on the BBWAA ballot (Mattingly, Morris, Murphy, and Trammell) but also selected Parker for a second straight ballot and Garvey, John, and Tiant for a third consecutive time despite none of those four holdover candidates coming anywhere close to election on their previous appearances.

The absences of Grich and Evans from the Modern Baseball Era ballot each drew criticism of the Historical Overview Committee, but the exclusion of Whitaker was met with the most disapproval, as Sports Illustrated’s Jay Jaffe and Lynn Henning of The Detroit News were among those who took the screening panel to task for not including “Sweet Lou” on the ballot.  Jaffe said Whitaker’s omission from the ballot “seems like a cruel joke” while Henning remarked that the former Tigers second baseman’s exclusion “makes no sense.”

Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 12:04 AM | 118 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: bobby grich, dwight evans, hall of fame, lou whitaker, veterans committee

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   1. TomH Posted: February 02, 2018 at 08:47 AM (#5617786)
the main obstacle: A number of BBWAA writers and Historical Overview Committee voters who did not or still don't understand that four walks are about as valuable as three singles plus an out.

obstacle #2: well-rounded instead of great at one thing. Not super peak, but not super career length.

Bobby Grich, career stats--
.PA. .AVG .OBP .SLG ..H. ..W.
6890 .266 .371 .424 1833 1087

Bobby Grich, career stats, if you take 600 walks and turn them into 450 singles and 150 outs--
.PA. .AVG .OBP .SLG ..H. ..W.
6890 .305 .354 .450 2283 487

ooh, looky ma, a .300 hitter with power who could play great defense! Let's put him in the Hall of Fame! If you made him into less of a slugger, he could have a .325 career avg and be equally as valuable. If you made him a better hitter and poorer glove, moving another 150 outs into hits with the bat and opposite with the glove, now he hits .345! If Rod Carew turned 800 of his singles into 50 home runs, 400 walks, 350 outs, and 280 defensive plays made (possible estimate of Grich's defensive superiority plus Carew played first base much of his career), maybe their reputations would be reversed? Would Carew's excellent MVP voting record mostly banish (very possible). I'm not trashing Carew, but... these are your main obstacles.



   2. SoSH U at work Posted: February 02, 2018 at 09:38 AM (#5617813)
For years I've been saying the biggest change that needs to happen to the VC is to find a way to divorce its results from the BBWAA election entirely, and why I don't support Dan G's well-intentioned but misguided desire to bring back some of these bypassed candidates for another go-around with the BBWAA. The committee takes its cues from the BBWAA voting, then the voting body does likewise, and that needs to stop.

Jack Morris and Don Mattingly and Tommy John weren't really overlooked. They had 15 years on the ballot, and didn't make it. The BBWAA had repeated attempts to evaluate them and re-evaluate them, and not enough of them concluded that they were worth. Correctly, I'd say, at least in the case of the first two guys.

Grich and Whitaker and some others were truly overlooked. They got one bite at the BBWAA apple, and were gone. These are the guys the screening committee should be taking the hard looks at, and passing on to the voting panel, but it seems only Ted Simmons has managed to break through among the previously ignored.
   3. -- Posted: February 02, 2018 at 10:01 AM (#5617842)
The obstacle is that too much of their offense was based on walks.

There's little or nothing more to it beyond that. You can't walk your way off the island, and you can't walk your way to the Hall of Fame.
   4. John DiFool2 Posted: February 02, 2018 at 10:31 AM (#5617870)
Not sure what is worse--this HOC, or the one which nominates for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. At least Yes, Deep Purple, and the Moody Blues finally got in.
   5. Ithaca2323 Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:09 AM (#5617906)

Grich and Whitaker and some others were truly overlooked. They got one bite at the BBWAA apple, and were gone. These are the guys the screening committee should be taking the hard looks at, and passing on to the voting panel, but it seems only Ted Simmons has managed to break through among the previously ignored.



I mean, I agree that Whitaker and Grich should be in. And yes, they haven't been evaluated enough. But I don't know that I agree with the idea that the screening committee needs to emphasize 1-and-dones over guys who were on for 15 (now 10) years.

Just looking at this year's ballot for example, the best one-and-dones were:

Santana—an intriguing peak guy, though not in my Hall
Damon—the walking embodiment of The Hall of Very Good
Moyer- Jim Kaat 2.0

The guys I suspect will be on the ballot for 10 years and not get in

Larry Walker—Better than Vlad
Billy Wagner—Better than Hoffman
Scott Rolen—a 70 WAR 3rd baseman
A. Jones—Also an intriguing peak candidate
McGriff—Could be interesting depending on how you answer the "What would his career look like if PED guys weren't dominating the leaderboards?"

To me, the 2nd group is stronger than the first. I'd vote for 4 of them.

*I'm anti-Rivera closer for the Hall, but if we're putting in Hoffman, Wagner is equally deserving.
   6. BDC Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:17 AM (#5617912)
The obstacle is that too much of their offense was based on walks.

There's little or nothing more to it beyond that. You can't walk your way off the island, and you can't walk your way to the Hall of Fame


Which is certainly true; it's basically what TomH explained.

If the next steps in the argument are "walks really aren't important, and they weren't thought of as important before killjoy sabermetricians came along, and you shouldn't be able to walk your way to the Hall," I disagree.

The analogy to your position would be a Football Hall of Fame without offensive linemen. After all, they're not as famous as running backs, they don't score touchdowns, they don't make as much money, chicks don't dig the trap block, etc.

But the actual Halls of Fame do have offensive linemen, because no running back ever gained his thousands of yards without substantial help from his offensive line.

If somebody's valuable, he's valuable. Unless it's a Hall of Disproportionate Headline Attention, it makes sense to put the most valuable players into it.
   7. SoSH U at work Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:19 AM (#5617917)
I mean, I agree that Whitaker and Grich should be in. And yes, they haven't been evaluated enough. But I don't know that I agree with the idea that the screening committee needs to emphasize 1-and-dones over guys who were on for 15 (now 10) years


I don't think anybody should be emphasized, but it's undeniable that certain players did not get complete evaluations, while some others most certainly did. And the point of the VC is to re-examine those guys who are retired and no longer eligible for a vote by the BBWAA, not simply to vote in the guys who came closest by the BBWAA.

There should be no BBWAA members on the screening committees, and none on the voting committee. And the Hall should ask whatever groups it creates to start fresh and not take their cues from the BBWAA.

That's how you improve the process.

   8. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:20 AM (#5617919)
Unless it's a Hall of Disproportionate Headline Attention

Now there's an idea...who wants to form a committee?
   9. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:38 AM (#5617936)

I mean, I agree that Whitaker and Grich should be in. And yes, they haven't been evaluated enough. But I don't know that I agree with the idea that the screening committee needs to emphasize 1-and-dones over guys who were on for 15 (now 10) years.


The BBWAA voters did a particularly bad job with 1970s & 80s players:
Grich, Simmons & Whitaker--all 1 and done
Dewey Evans--lasts 3 ballots
Hernandez--lasts 9 ballots

So thus, the screening committee goes with the candidates who lasted 15 years with the BBWAA, the problem is they repeatedly go to the well on these guys while overlooking Grich, Whitaker, Evans and Hernandez

Garvey, John & Tiant each made three Era ballots
Concepcion & Parker made two

If Garvey makes a fourth ballot in a row, I will go insane. John & Tiant are decent HOF candidates & besides there arent many good pitcher candidates from the Modern Baseball Era

Concepcion is well behind Grich & Whitaker

Evans is superior to Parker

   10. Ithaca2323 Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:38 AM (#5617937)
#7, fair enough. I think I misread what you were saying in #2
   11. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 11:41 AM (#5617943)
Grich and Whitaker and some others were truly overlooked. They got one bite at the BBWAA apple, and were gone. These are the guys the screening committee should be taking the hard looks at, and passing on to the voting panel, but it seems only Ted Simmons has managed to break through among the previously ignored.

Simmons is the only guy not to last 15 years on the BBWAA ballot to make the Expansion or Modern Baseball Era ballot multiple times
Simmons mainly makes the ballot because he has a HOF member advocating for him, Rick Hummel. I found this from the article interesting:

Simmons' continued presence on the ballot is likely owed to the lobbying of Historical Overview Committee member Rick Hummel, who writes for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. When asked by a reader about Simmons' chances at Hall of Fame election last January, Hummel gave a candid answer that gives an insight into the inner-workings of the Historical Overview Committee, who seem to have humored Hummel by tabbing Simmons for the ballot:

"I'm headed to Cooperstown tomorrow for a special committee meeting to put together the veterans' ballots for the next two elections. My passionate pleas to include Simmons never have failed to amuse my compatriots and I will raise the flag again this year. He almost certainly will turn up on another ballot."
   12. SoSH U at work Posted: February 02, 2018 at 01:06 PM (#5618033)
Simmons mainly makes the ballot because he has a HOF member advocating for him, Rick Hummel. I found this from the article interesting:


That figures. I've wondered why Simmons was able to get some traction where others of his type have failed.

What's encouraging is that since getting the chance on the ballot, he's made tremendous progress, falling just one vote short this time. It offers some hope that if Grich and others can get there, a push is possible (I'm pretty sure Whitaker will make the ballot next time).
   13. QLE Posted: February 02, 2018 at 01:34 PM (#5618075)
The committee takes its cues from the BBWAA voting, then the voting body does likewise, and that needs to stop.


The item that is of interest (to me, at least) in considering this:

When did the VC start to take this approach, and why? The Old Timers Committee was created in large part because of the realization that the BBWAA had enough on its plate dealing with twentieth-century players and wasn't in a good position to judge nineteenth-century players. Looking at the early years of the Veterans Committee, a lot of the picks (especially among those we agree with in retrospective) are folk who either never really got detailed BBWAA consideration or who were marginal performers in the BBWAA vote. Certainly the Frankie Frisch era VC didn't care much about prior BBWAA decisions (and not always as a bad thing, either- Goose Goslin peaked at 13.5% with the BBWAA), and that trend continued with the VCs immediately after Frisch was gone (Joe Sewell and Earl Averill, for instance, peaked at 8.6% and 5.3% with the BBWAA). Even in the 1980s, while the trend was increasing towards attention to the BBWAA vote, they were still able to induct Arky Vaughan, who would have been one-and-done under modern rules and who only got a mild surge of support as he left the ballot.

Is it just backlash to the Frisch-era VCs that has led to it being more tied to BBWAA votes (though, even then, Larry Doby was two ballots and done by the BBWAA), or is there more to it?
   14. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 02, 2018 at 01:44 PM (#5618097)
Even in the 1980s, while the trend was increasing towards attention to the BBWAA vote, they were still able to induct Arky Vaughan, who would have been one-and-done under modern rules and who only got a mild surge of support as he left the ballot.


IN 1984 the VC inducted Rick Ferrell who peaked at 1 vote on the BBWAA ballot.
   15. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:11 PM (#5618129)
IN 1984 the VC inducted Rick Ferrell who peaked at 1 vote on the BBWAA ballot.

wrong Ferrell
   16. QLE Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:18 PM (#5618139)
#14 and #15- Right, and right, which is why I didn't bring him up- the point is for the various VCs to consider deserving players who for whatever reason were neglected by the BBWAA, so it struck me as more relevant to analyze players who fit that form, rather than players whom the BBWAA rightfully ignored.
   17. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:24 PM (#5618148)
What's encouraging is that since getting the chance on the ballot, he's made tremendous progress, falling just one vote short this time. It offers some hope that if Grich and others can get there, a push is possible (I'm pretty sure Whitaker will make the ballot next time).

I was surprised, 1. Simmons made the ballot a third time in a row after not drawing support in the two Expansion Era elections & 2. He actually came 1 vote from being elected

It's safe to say, Simmons will make the next ballot and as SoSH stated Whitaker is a likely addition. I hope to see both elected, I know Simmons going in would make cardsfanboy happy

Below is the electorate for the Modern Baseball Era Committee. Of course it will change for the December2019 vote as the HOF never uses the same voters for the actual election, unlike the Historical Overview Committee which rarely ever changes. I'd bet Simmons drew votes from former teammates Sutton & Yount. Castellini & Dewitt have St Louis ties, Simmons played for Cox in Atlanta & while Simmons was gone by the time Schuerholz got there his Atlanta ties may have helped. Also, Stark is more analytic than most voters they use for these panels so I'd bet he threw a vote Simba's way

George Brett, Rod Carew, Bobby Cox, Dennis Eckersley, John Schuerholz, Don Sutton, Dave Winfield and Robin Yount; major league executives Sandy Alderson (Mets), Paul Beeston (Blue Jays), Bob Castellini (Reds), Bill DeWitt (Cardinals) and David Glass (Royals); and veteran media members/historians Bob Elliott, Steve Hirdt and Jayson Stark.

   18. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:27 PM (#5618153)
When did the VC start to take this approach, and why?

My guess would be when Morgan & others got the Hall to overhaul (no pun intended) the Veterans Committee. After that, the Historical Overview Committee put together the ballots and fast forward to when they started the Era Committees in 2010, you started to see veteran BBWAA members make up a portion of the elecorate
   19. SoSH U at work Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:33 PM (#5618163)


My guess would be when Morgan & others got the Hall to overhaul (no pun intended) the Veterans Committee.


No, it predated the overhaul. In the 1990s the VC ushered in Bunning, Fox and Cepeda, all of whom got close through the BBWAA but fell short.

   20. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5618168)
wrong Ferrell


Not sure what you are saying here. It WAS Rick Ferrell. Are you saying they thought they were inducting his brother?
   21. Howie Menckel Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:47 PM (#5618176)
I think he's saying that Wes Ferrell was much better

Wes got in the HOM
pretty sure Rick never got a single vote on ballots (even though we must vote for 15 players every year)
   22. ajnrules Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:49 PM (#5618179)
Not sure what you are saying here. It WAS Rick Ferrell. Are you saying they thought they were inducting his brother?

Maybe he's saying they put the wrong Ferrell brother in. Wes is certainly a deserving candidate and I hope he gets another look with the Early Baseball Committee.

EDIT: Coke to Howie Menckel
   23. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:50 PM (#5618180)
No, it predated the overhaul. In the 1990s the VC ushered in Bunning, Fox and Cepeda, all of whom got close through the BBWAA but fell short.


That is correct, all those guys came real close.

The big difference now is advanced metrics have shown that the BBWAA voters inaccurately valued Parker, Garvey, Mattingly, & Concepcion over better all around players such as Whitaker, Grich, Dewey Evans & Hernandez who were great defensively & had fine on base skills due to taking walks. The Historical Overview Committee continues making this mistake by selecting the Parker/Garvey types over the Grich/Whitaker types
   24. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 02, 2018 at 02:55 PM (#5618185)
Wes is certainly a deserving candidate and I hope he gets another look with the Early Baseball Committee.

Wes has gotten multiple looks on the (poorly named) Pre-Integration Era ballot. The closest he came was on the pre-1943 ballot in Dec 2008 which voted in Joe Gordon & came one vote away from electing Allie Reynolds. Ferrell drew the third highest vote percentage at 50%. Perhaps, the Jack with his 3.90 ERA will help Ferrell & his 4.04 ERA get in. I'm not 100% sold on Ferrell's HOF case but he belongs on the ballot & is one of the more unique players of all-time
   25. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: February 02, 2018 at 04:00 PM (#5618232)
IN 1984 the VC inducted Rick Ferrell who peaked at 1 vote on the BBWAA ballot.

wrong Ferrell
You prefer Will?
   26. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 02, 2018 at 05:14 PM (#5618309)
I think he's saying that Wes Ferrell was much better

that's exactly what I was saying
   27. Sweatpants Posted: February 02, 2018 at 06:40 PM (#5618360)
came one vote away from electing Allie Reynolds
I had no idea that this happened. Reynolds was kind of a poor man's Jack Morris who actually did step things up noticeably in the postseason, including hitting over .300.
   28. Ziggy's screen name Posted: February 02, 2018 at 08:15 PM (#5618385)
Allie Reynolds? Eeewwwww

As much as I would like Whitaker to get in, I'm not sure that it's worth the risk of inducting Allie Reynolds. I'm pretty sure that I'm in the minority here, but I wouldn't mind if they just did away with the veteran's committees. Except for closers, the BBWAA picks are rarely true embarrassments.
   29. cardsfanboy Posted: February 02, 2018 at 10:06 PM (#5618428)

As much as I would like Whitaker to get in, I'm not sure that it's worth the risk of inducting Allie Reynolds. I'm pretty sure that I'm in the minority here, but I wouldn't mind if they just did away with the veteran's committees. Except for closers, the BBWAA picks are rarely true embarrassments.


Only way I could even begin to support that argument, would be if a player never fell off the ballot. New data, new ways at looking at players, and of course horrendous mistakes by the bbwaa need to have a backup plan for the future. Players should never become "ineligible to be considered ever again." and that is what you are proposing.


But picks like Jim Rice, Andre Dawson, Dizzy Dean, Kirby Puckett, Tony Perez, Catfish Hunter, Lou Brock, etc. Don't exactly scream great choices either...
   30. The Duke Posted: February 02, 2018 at 10:10 PM (#5618431)
It would be cruel for simba not to get in now but who can predict the minds of a new 16 people every year. It does hold out hope that grinch and sweet Lou can get in. If Omar vizquel can get 40% of the writers vote surely there is a way to get Grich and Whitaker elected
   31. bachslunch Posted: February 03, 2018 at 07:54 AM (#5618528)
Yeah, I remember them almost electing Allie Reynolds. No idea what they thinking with that one. Even Jack Morris looks good compared to him.

Anymore, I’m resigned to the idea that they’re going to get some players wrong in Veterans Committee voting. But if they get guys like Simmons, Whitaker, Grich, Allen, Minoso, Dahlen, and Dewey in and the price is slipping in a couple klunkers alongside, I’ll take it.
   32. Walt Davis Posted: February 03, 2018 at 04:48 PM (#5618764)
#28-#29: I'll take a middle position -- have a historical committee (i.e. certainly no writers, preferably no players, just "experts") that meets every 5-10 years to evaluate players the BBWAA passed over. Maybe they limit themselves to guys who fell off the ballot in the last 5-10 years or maybe we limit the number of times they can assess a player ... or maybe it's more like the HoM. The key points are that, from a baseball purist perspective, the BBWAA doesn't make many mistakes of omission so there's no need for VC's to meet often and, much as I love him, we've been re-assessing Minoso for 30 years now.

I'm also amenable to a process similar to what they did for the Negro Leaguers with a one-time, put in everybody you think belongs in one go style election fo players who debuted (retired?) before expansion (WW2?) and be done with it. The number of living people who care whether these folks get inducted is probably below 100 for each.

The HoF of course has attendance/money concerns beyond the baseball concerns and wants to maximize the chances that they will induct somebody every year so I fully expect VCs to remain an annual tradition.
   33. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 03, 2018 at 05:11 PM (#5618768)
But picks like Jim Rice, Andre Dawson, Dizzy Dean, Kirby Puckett, Tony Perez, Catfish Hunter, Lou Brock, etc. Don't exactly scream great choices either...


Dawson is a perfectly cromulent middle tier HOFer and doesn't belong on that list. Both by career and peak value, he's as good if not better thann guys like Billy Williams, Willie Stargell, and Willie McCovey:

Dawson:

Career WAR - 64.5
Top 5 seasons - 7.9, 7.4 (strike year), 6.9, 6.9, 4.8
Black ink - 11
Other - MVP, MVP - 2 (twice), ROY, 8 ASG, 8 GG

Williams:

Career WAR - 63.6
Top 5 seasons - 7.7, 6.6, 6.5, 6.1, 5.2
Black Ink - 18
Other - MVP - 2 (twice), ROY, 6 ASG

Stargell:

Career WAR - 57.5
Top 5 seasons - 7.9, 7.2, 5.4, 4.8, 3.9
Black Ink - 17
Other - MVP, MVP -2 (twice), MVP -3, 7 ASG

McCovey:

Career WAR - 64.4
Top 5 seasons - 8.1, 7.0, 6.6, 6.5, 5.9
Black Ink - 31
Other - MVP, MVP -3, ROY, 6 ASG,

Dawson has the most career WAR, the most peak WAR, the most ASG, the most GG, tied for the most MVP, tied for the most top 3 MVP, tied for the most ROY. He's clearly the worst hitter of the bunch, but due to his defense and baserunning, he's just as, if not more valuable.
   34. Walt Davis Posted: February 03, 2018 at 05:52 PM (#5618777)
I have some sympathy for the idea that "you can't walk your way into the HoF." It is a very boring event and while plate discipline is clearly a skill, not swinging at pitches doesn't take a lot of it. Of course it's something of a moot point since anybody who's a serious HoF candidate obviously brings a lot of other skills to the table. But to ramble on a bit longer ...

For players such as Gwynn and Raines, getting on base (or number of times on base) is a huge component of their greatness and, in this regard, a walk pretty much is the same as a single. So sure, all else about equal, there's no strong preference for the guy with 3100 hits and 800 walks vs the one with 2600 hits and 1300 walks.**

In some ways, it's the McGwire type I'm a bit more concerned with. He had just 1.5 offensive skills. He could hit a pitch in his zone a mile and he would rarely swing at a pitch outside of his zone. He got a lot of walks because (1) pitchers hand out a good number of walks if you just stand there and don't swing and (2) pitchers were scared to death to throw one in his zone (i.e. walks correlate with ISO). What makes him great is essentially that his zone was obviously a good portion of the strike zone -- much more than just a mistake hitter -- otherwise he'd have a worse K/BB ratio. Still, crushing strikes on the inner half of the plate and not swinging otherwise is a pretty unexciting HoF case.

** Some issues here with the "4 walks is as good as 3 hits and an out." That's true but that's not usually the actual comparison. For Gwynn/Raines, they've got the same OBP over the same number of PAs. For them, out of every 15 reaches, it's (roughly) 12 hits and 3 walks for Gwynn versus 10 hits and 5 walks for Raines. Two hits versus two walks and no out difference. If that's all that was happening, that's a difference in Gwynn's favor of about 1/3 of run per 15 TOB and, over the course of 3900 TOB, that's a difference of about 87 runs. Rbat ends up putting the difference at 110 runs -- in this particular case, the ISOs are nearly the same (121 for Gwynn, 131 for Raines). For players with the same OBP and ISO (and PAs), you do prefer the one with the higher BA.

So maybe it's clearer to say the "obstacle" is continuing to value BA more than OBP. But even that's not all that's going on with Grich vs. Carew -- after all, Carew had the much better OBP (393 vs 371 ... and in 2300 more PA). Grich makes up his ground with a 160 ISO vs Carew's 100. This gave Carew about 4000 TB and 1000 BB or 1 "base produced" per 2.1 PA while Grich had about 2900 TB and 1100 BB or 1 "base produced" per 2.05 PA. This is captured in Rbat where Carew comes out to 25 Rbat/650 PA and Grich at 20 with Carew primarily benefiting from creating fewer outs. (Over Carew's PAs, that Rbat difference would come to about 78 vs the 110 difference between Raines and Gwynn).

Not really disagreeing with #1 -- given the era he was on the ballot, Grich with a 300 BA and the same ISO probably does have a better shot at the HoF than the actual Grich despite a much lower OBP and less value created. But we prefer Carew over both of those guys because of his superior OBP that mainly comes from his superior BA (and a massive edge in walk rate over the mythical Grich). Note that "take 600 of Grich's walks and turn them into 450 hits and 150 outs" is taking away nearly 60% of Grich's walks. That's a guy who walked once every 7.5 PA turned into one who walks once every 17 PA (Carew about 1 in 10).

Still, with that short career, no milestones, still under 2300 hits, no MVPs, only 4 GG, I don't think that Grich makes the HoF either even with a 300 BA. Hard to say, not many relevant comps. And his "adjusted" 1979 might come out to something like 330/360/570 with 30 HR and 101 RBI and win him the MVP over his teammate Don Baylor.

By the way #1 mis-labels Grich's ABs as his PAs but the calculation has added the 600 AB that the change would create and gives the correct BA and OBP.
   35. cardsfanboy Posted: February 03, 2018 at 08:39 PM (#5618833)
Dawson is a perfectly cromulent middle tier HOFer and doesn't belong on that list. Both by career and peak value, he's as good if not better thann guys like Billy Williams, Willie Stargell, and Willie McCovey:



I'll concede that point, not sure why I put him on there other than he is below Larry walker obviously so maybe it's a bit of resentment flowing over that....still you are right, he probably should not have been on my quick from memory list.

   36. cardsfanboy Posted: February 03, 2018 at 08:52 PM (#5618835)
Still, with that short career, no milestones, still under 2300 hits, no MVPs, only 4 GG, I don't think that Grich makes the HoF either even with a 300 BA. Hard to say, not many relevant comps. And his "adjusted" 1979 might come out to something like 330/360/570 with 30 HR and 101 RBI and win him the MVP over his teammate Don Baylor.


My problem with Grich is that I grew up in an era where the two leagues were clearly separate and knowledge of the other league was pretty much limited to the Yankees, Red Sox, the early 70's A's and late 70's Royals.... so I cannot comment on the common perception of Grich and have to look at it from a vantage point of the past, and from that vantage point I see a guy who got one of the highest free agent contract of all time when he became eligible, but I also see a guy who put up a 7 war season and got mvp votes in years he put up .275, .263 and .251 averages, so it's clear that the writers didn't wholly rely on batting average. At the same time he had a season where he put up a 7+ war and won just a gold glove(no mvp, no all star appearances, despite being the 3rd best position player in the league that year)


Grich is exactly the type of guy that post 2 is talking about.... the common perception is mixed on him, and he was killed in the election and is now getting penalized a second time because of his failure to generate interest in his first year of eligibility.... the guy wasn't actually a nobody, the owners recognized his value, even if the writers did not. To rely on the writers take on him for a second time through just seems somewhat ridiculous.

   37. QLE Posted: February 04, 2018 at 05:06 AM (#5618894)

I'm also amenable to a process similar to what they did for the Negro Leaguers with a one-time, put in everybody you think belongs in one go style election for players who debuted (retired?) before expansion (WW2?) and be done with it.


Quite, especially given two factors:

1) Pretty much every player who isn't in and who deserves it from the pre-integration era is a player whose career was chiefly before the First World War- given this distance in time, having a special committee meet to consider this era overall becomes very tempting.

2) Under the current system, those nineteen and early twentieth-century players have bad luck even getting on the ballot (only Dahlen and Stovey made it to the last Pre-Intergration Era ballot- but three executives and four 1930s players did), and, when we also consider that players from that era are currently only scheduled for review once a decade, it is obvious that some process to expedite matters is necessary if these players are ever going to receive a proper review.
   38. TomH Posted: February 04, 2018 at 02:01 PM (#5619033)
Walt, thanks in 34 for pointing out the labeling error in #1.

And I am not suggestnig Grich was better, or even as good as, Rod Carew. It was a convenient argument for two contemporaries who played the same position (sorta) to show how their perception (Carew >>>>> Grch) didn't match reality (Carew > Grich), and how perception would change if the same value were generated differently.
   39. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 04, 2018 at 03:03 PM (#5619057)
I would say Carew had a better overall career than Grich but during their years as Angel teammates, Grich was the more valuable player. Carew was still hitting .300 each year from 79-83 but Grich is far superior in WAR (23.5 to 16). Grich is aided by positional adjustments by playing slightly above avg 2B while Carew occupied 1B. The game of baseball and first base were not as power obsessed back then but Carew still had little power for a first baseman but the Angels had tons of power everywhere else it didn't much matter (Reggie, Baylor, DeCinces, Lynn, Downing, & Grich)

During Carew's prime, he was a so-so fielding 2B winning the batting title every year while Grich was an excellent fielding 2B with a good bat. Carew was better but along with Joe Morgan they were the top 3 second basemen with whoever was #4 far behind

Grich is hurt by his later start due to Baltimore having an amazing infield and some lost time in 77 due to back injury and an off year recovering in 78

Carew had the better career and rightfully is a first ballot HOFer but Grich belongs too
   40. blueshaker Posted: February 04, 2018 at 04:51 PM (#5619092)
I'm not a big fan of lumping Lou Whitaker and Bobby Grich together, which seems to happen quite a bit during HOF debates. I mean, on the surface it makes sense, but I don't think it does Grich any favors.

With such a well-rounded game, Grich had that profile (which Bill James identified so long ago) that pretty much guaranteed he would be underrated. But then on top of that, he played in a league that was so offensively challenged that it implemented the DH rule to force more scoring. In a pitcher's park. Seriously, a player with Grich's profile simply couldn't have picked a worse environment to have his prime land in if he wants to look like a HOFer.

But if you look at 1974, 75, 76...you can make a pretty good MVP case for Grich in any of those seaons. Or in 1979. 1981 too. There is a decent argument that Grich was the very best player in the AL somewhere in the span of years from 1972-1976. Grich or Carew or Reggie. The other two being easy HOFers of course, and at THEIR very best, Grich was pretty much an equal.

Lou Whitaker doesn't have a real MVP case in ANY season. Nobody ever had him on a short list of the best players in baseball, because he never WAS one of the very best players in baseball. If I had a HOF vote, I wouldn't vote for Lou Whitaker. Hey, if he makes it someday I won't object too much either. Lou Whitaker was a very good player in 1978. He was a very good player in 1988. He was STILL a very good player in 1994. But he wasn't ever a GREAT player.

Bobby Grich was a great player.
   41. TomH Posted: February 04, 2018 at 05:16 PM (#5619104)
The one advantage Grich had for himself? Good teammates that helped him get post-season exposure. Sadly he faired poorly in the 5 LCS chances he had.
   42. Fiore Gino Posted: February 05, 2018 at 08:47 AM (#5619578)
I'll be interested to see what the next ballot for these candidates looks like, you have ten spots and since Tram and Morris were elected you have eight holdovers:

Simmons has been on three straight ballot but after missing by one vote is a shoe in to be included on the next ballot

Miller has been on the ballot forever and got 44% this time so he likely returns

Garvey, John & Tiant have been considered three times like Simmons but with no major supoort; even more for Tiant if you go back to old Veterans Committee elections

Parker was on the last two ballots

Mattingly & Murphy made first appearance and I could see them returning


Candidates from previous elections not on recent ballot: Concepcion, Staub, Oliver, Blue, Guidry, Quiz. Concepcion actually got 50% in 2011 so I could see him coming back at some point and maybe Oliver since he has 2700 hits & a .300 career BA

Candidates who have yet to appear: Grich, Whitaker, Hernandez, Dwight Evans, Reggie Smith, Reuschel, Nettles, Campaneris, Darrell Evans, Munson

I say the ballot looks something like:

Miller
Simmons
Parker
John
Tiant
Mattingly
Murphy
Whitaker
Hernandez
Dwight Evans
   43. Rally Posted: February 05, 2018 at 08:57 AM (#5619580)
The game of baseball and first base were not as power obsessed back then but Carew still had little power for a first baseman but the Angels had tons of power everywhere else it didn't much matter (Reggie, Baylor, DeCinces, Lynn, Downing, & Grich)


Certainly there was less power in the game back then, since we are setting league HR records on a yearly basis now, but Carew's lack of power for a 1B was very conspicuous at the time.

He was helping the team, since he walked a lot to go along with the high averages, but it was obvious that he wasn't in the same class as Eddie Murray and Cecil Cooper.
   44. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:20 AM (#5619588)
If the next steps in the argument are "walks really aren't important, and they weren't thought of as important before killjoy sabermetricians came along, and you shouldn't be able to walk your way to the Hall," I disagree.


If everyone involved in the game misvalued something, I'm not sure why you would then get credit for the value of that thing when computer power finally makes it possible to value it correctly.

If there was a game in 1980 with three currencies -- US dollars, Deutsche Marks, and Turkish Lira -- and the object was to get the highest aggregate value and the value of the DM was set at $2 -- and then in 2017, we discover that the DM was really worth $1 -- why would we change our opinions of who did the best in the 1980 game?

   45. Rally Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:43 AM (#5619604)
You don't need computer power to value a walk correctly. I doubt Bill James had much in the way of computer power back in the 70s.

The currency example loses me. Currencies fluctuate all the time. Some of them are valuable at one time and completely worthless in another. The value of a walk now, relative to other batting events, is about the same as it always has been, and always will be unless baseball makes some radical rule change.

Every now and then somebody gets the idea that we need to get rid of the intentional walk, maybe by having a big penalty like the batter advancing two bases or the baserunners advancing. If that were ever done, it would not retroactively change the value Barry Bonds had in his playing days.
   46. Rally Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:45 AM (#5619607)
For players of the past I'd just like to see players valued consistently - give the guys who drew walks as much credit as the managers of the time gave disdain to the pitchers who walked them.
   47. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:47 AM (#5619611)
If there was a game in 1980 with three currencies -- US dollars, Deutsche Marks, and Turkish Lira -- and the object was to get the highest aggregate value and the value of the DM was set at $2 -- and then in 2017, we discover that the DM was really worth $1 -- why would we change our opinions of who did the best in the 1980 game?


Because the goal of a baseball game is not to collect the most hits or RBI or fewest strikeouts, or whatever, it is to score the most runs. Well, more runs than the opponent. And if have a better understanding now than we did then the value of the individual components of run creation (or prevention), it is completely rational to change our view of a player's individual value. Just because people valued certain things incorrectly, dosn't mean they were right at the time. Just because they may have thought Dave Stapleon and his .321 BA was better than Willie Randolph and his .294 doesnt mean he was, either then or now.
   48. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 10:41 AM (#5619643)
Just because people valued certain things incorrectly, dosn't mean they were right at the time.


It doesn't matter whether they were right. What matters is that most people really didn't give a #### whether players were good at getting walks, and therefore people shouldn't get a bunch of credit for them now when no one cared at the time.

OTOH, people in fact consciously set out to obtain singles, doubles, HRs, etc.
   49. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 10:58 AM (#5619660)
If there was a game in 1980 with three currencies -- US dollars, Deutsche Marks, and Turkish Lira -- and the object was to get the highest aggregate value and the value of the DM was set at $2 -- and then in 2017, we discover that the DM was really worth $1 -- why would we change our opinions of who did the best in the 1980 game?

I don't understand this either. If it were not a game, but real life, wouldn't the investor who was dubious about the overvalued mark have made out lots better in the end?

most people really didn't give a #### whether players were good at getting walks, and therefore people shouldn't get a bunch of credit for them now when no one cared at the time.

OTOH, people in fact consciously set out to obtain singles, doubles, HRs, etc


But that's clearly untrue. Jimmy Wynn consciously set out to work the count, and ended up drawing a lot of walks along with his home runs (and strikeouts). Dave Kingman didn't work the count and ended up with very few walks along with his home runs (and strikeouts). Wynn was a much better offensive baseball player. There is no way around that.

If it's a Hall Of I Liked Their Style, without reference to being good at the sport, knock yourself out. Unless you are still punchy from the Jack Morris crusade :)
   50. Booey Posted: February 05, 2018 at 11:10 AM (#5619673)
Certainly there was less power in the game back then, since we are setting league HR records on a yearly basis now

Probably tongue in cheek, but wasn't 2017 the first time the overall HR record was broken since like 2000 or so?

We really are setting a new strikeout record every year, though.
   51. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 11:11 AM (#5619675)
But that's clearly untrue. Jimmy Wynn consciously set out to work the count, and ended up drawing a lot of walks along with his home runs


Assuming that's true, it doesn't mean he consciously set out to draw a walk.

If it's a Hall Of I Liked Their Style, without reference to being good at the sport, knock yourself out.


I see no need to apologize for not going goo-goo-ga-ga over a player doing something a nine-year-old girl who's never played baseball could do -- and which pretty much every constituency in the sport, including his peers, didn't think was that big a deal.

Yeah, obviously walks have value, but there's no reason posterity needs to value at their relative sabermetric value (1) standing and watching pitches go by; and (2) actually swinging the bat and getting a hit. Which is the more elegant and impressive athletic accomplishment? It's not really close as their relative sabermetric values, right?
   52. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 12:34 PM (#5619753)
I see no need to apologize for not going goo-goo-ga-ga over a player doing something a nine-year-old girl who's never played baseball could do


This is without a doubt your most trollish argument ever. And that's saying a lot. Well done. It's like Babe Ruth shattering the single season HR ecord in 1920, and then hitting 5 more the next year.

You can't possibly believe that nonsense, you clearly don't expect anyone else to believe it, and your only purpose is to get a rise out of others.
   53. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 12:38 PM (#5619756)
You can't possibly believe that nonsense, you clearly don't expect anyone else to believe it, and your only purpose is to get a rise out of others

Yeah, I know, I mainly answer because I think of the lurkers and newcomers who might be reading, so they don't assume that SBB represents any kind of sabermetric consensus :)
   54. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 01:39 PM (#5619805)
You can't possibly believe that nonsense, you clearly don't expect anyone else to believe it,


??

I do believe it, and a big majority of the HOF voters believe it.

Which is why Grich and Lou didn't get many votes.

I don't expect many here to "believe it" -- that's for sure. But people here all act as if it's some big mystery and miscarriage of justice that Bobby Grich isn't in the HOF, and I'm explaining to them why it is neither.

   55. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 01:47 PM (#5619813)
From the very first post in the thread:

Bobby Grich, career stats, if you take 600 walks and turn them into 450 singles and 150 outs--

.PA. .AVG .OBP .SLG ..H. ..W.
6890 .305 .354 .450 2283 487


No one would ever do this because that would mean he had a batting average of .750 for those 600 ABs. You'd take those walks and allot them in line with his .266 career batting average.
   56. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 01:53 PM (#5619821)
I do believe it, and a big majority of the HOF voters believe it.


A large majority of HOF voters believe a if 9 year old girl came to bat in a MLB game, she could consistantly walks ? Sure, whatever. Your arguments become less attached to reality by the day.
   57. DavidFoss Posted: February 05, 2018 at 01:58 PM (#5619824)
??

I do believe it, and a big majority of the HOF voters believe it.


You're talking like a person can post a high-OBP by just standing there like a nine-year old girl. If you just stand there, the pitcher will groove strikes down the middle and your OBP will plummet. You can't walk if the pitcher throws strikes.

Do we have to spell things out? It is called "strike zone judgement". You make the pitcher throw you strikes. If you don't expand your zone, you'll have better pitches to hit later in the count... or you'll walk. I think this is why Joe-Morgan-the-announcer seems to disagree with Joe-Morgan-the-player. Joe didn't want to draw walks, but he wasn't going to swing at bad pitches.

Contemporaries loved Grich. He signed a huge free agent contract in the late 70s long before anyone knew about sabermetrics. Grich seemed to have been forgotten as soon as he retired though. I think it was more of a case of injuries slowing him down in the second half of his career making people forget how great of a fielder he was in his prime.
   58. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 01:59 PM (#5619826)
A large majority of HOF voters believe a if 9 year old girl came to bat in a MLB game, she could consistantly walks ?


You're inventing the "consistently."

A large majority of HOF voters believe you shouldn't be in the HOF based on walks. I agree with them, and my side is the consensus side. The reasoning is clear -- the athletic talent in a walk is miniscule as compared to a hit, as exemplified by the reality that a 9-year-old girl who's never played baseball could step into a MLB batters box and draw a walk.

   59. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:00 PM (#5619828)
He signed a huge free agent contract in the late 70s long before anyone knew about sabermetrics.


Not true. Several players signed bigger deals in that off-season. I posted on this before, and BB-Ref makes it clear.

I mean, yeah -- he got good money, sure. He was an excellent player. Just not HOF-caliber. Several players got more money. Grich got 5 years/$1.35M; Gene Tenace got 6 years/$1.815M.
Reggie got five years at basically double Grich's money.
   60. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:09 PM (#5619834)
it doesn't mean he consciously set out to draw a walk

Are you saying that Jimmy Wynn is a moron? What exactly was he expecting, taking that many pitches? Was it a complete surprise to him every time they told him to trot down to first base? :-D
   61. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:10 PM (#5619836)
Are you saying that Jimmy Wynn is a moron? What exactly was he expecting, taking that many pitches?


That he'd either get a pitch he knew he could drill or he'd walk. He much preferred the former, and I'm sure the fanbases of the teams he played for would rather watch him drill a pitch than stand there and walk.

Do you agree with the proposition that the relative aesthetic quality and athleticism as between a walk and a hit in a major league game is significantly wider than the relative sabermetric values?
   62. jmurph Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:21 PM (#5619840)
Do you agree with the proposition that the relative aesthetic quality and athleticism as between a walk and a hit in a major league game is significantly wider than the relative sabermetric values?

Seems like the more important step would be explaining why this matters? A triple is certainly a better demonstration of both those things than a home run is, but the home run is (obviously) more valuable.
   63. DavidFoss Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:23 PM (#5619841)
That he'd either get a pitch he knew he could drill or he'd walk. He much preferred the former, and I'm sure the fanbases of the teams he played for would rather watch him drill a pitch than stand there and walk.

But you must admit that there are limits to how much one should expand their zone. Not everyone can be like Berra, Oliva or Vlad and drill pitches in the dirt for extra bases. If the pitcher doesn't give you anything to hit, you should take your free base.

I'll admit that if you take strikes and fall behind in the count, that is lame. Guys who always start 0-1 or 0-2 won't last long. But guys that walk a lot don't necessarily do that. They track these things now.
   64. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:24 PM (#5619842)
Seems like the more important step would be explaining why this matters?


Because aesthetics and athleticism are positive virtues in sport and therefore correctly impaneled as critical factors in how posterity views sportsmen.
   65. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:35 PM (#5619847)
the reality that a 9-year-old girl who's never played baseball could step into a MLB batters box and draw a walk.


Nobody believes this, not even you.
   66. jmurph Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5619852)
Because aesthetics and athleticism are positive virtues in sport and therefore correctly impaneled as critical factors in how posterity views sportsmen.

Word salad. You brought up value- do you deny that a triple is a better demonstration of "aesthetic quality and athleticism" than a home run and yet is still less valuable than the latter?
   67. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:41 PM (#5619854)
Nobody believes this, not even you.


And again, of course I believe it, seeing as how I've watched hundreds of episodes of pitchers not being able to throw a strike even when they know the batter isn't going to swing.

All it requires to draw a walk is for the pitcher not to be able to throw three strikes before he throws four balls. A nine-year-old girl, in 600 PAs in which she never takes the bat off her shoulder, would probably draw at least a dozen walks. At least. A major league hitter who never takes the bat off his shoulder would probably draw three dozen or thereabouts.

Why do you even argue such obvious things? It's bizarre and credibility-sapping.

   68. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:47 PM (#5619858)
I'm not arguing. I try not to argue with crazy people, though I frequently fail. But today I'm merely pointing out that you are a flaming loon.
   69. DL from MN Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:53 PM (#5619863)
DNFTT
   70. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 02:59 PM (#5619867)
Do you agree with the proposition that the relative aesthetic quality and athleticism as between a walk and a hit in a major league game is significantly wider than the relative sabermetric values?

This question (a) compares a highly subjective aesthetic scale to a highly precise measurement of batting value; and (b) downgrades the more subtle elements of athleticism.

Which is fine if you are interested in such things, as I keep saying. Like whatever players you like!

The argument only becomes desperate if you assert (let's say) that Dave Parker actually was a much better offensive ballplayer than Bobby Grich, because you like the components of his offense better, and so did people c1979. (Ha! I wasn't even trying to get 1979 in there. It's just destiny.)
   71. QLE Posted: February 05, 2018 at 03:22 PM (#5619883)
Because aesthetics and athleticism are positive virtues in sport and therefore correctly impaneled as critical factors in how posterity views sportsmen.


Are they, really?

A lot of people hated the changes that Babe Ruth brought to baseball on aesthetic terms- but, given all the long-ball hitters in the HOF, it seems clear they weren't listened to.

Most of us find the running game aesthetically pleasing, and it certainly displays athleticism- but it took Tim Raines ten years and a massive campaign to get into the HOF.

Similarly, defensive play demonstrates clear athleticism- but Andruw Jones just came very close to being one-and-done on the HOF ballot.

In contrast, most of us find relief pitching not to be aesthetically pleasing, and it certainly doesn't really demonstrate athleticism well (or they wouldn't be so subject to breakdown)- and yet the HOF can't seem to get enough of relief pitchers.

As for walks? Of the thirty players with the most walks in MLB history, twenty-three are in the HOF (all through the BBWAA), one hasn't faced the BBWAA yet, and two more are not in for off-the-field reasons. This doesn't seem to suggest a BBWAA that fears walks.

The overall point being, there's really no evidence that either pure aesthetics or pure athleticism has ever consistently motivated HOF voters- and, given that this is an argument about the HOF, it suggests that the point being made is bunk.
   72. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 05, 2018 at 03:50 PM (#5619907)
I just came to a realization: ^^^ is part of the Historical Overview Committee that is stuck in the olden days of HRs, RBIs, batting avg & teh fear

From the HOF website the HOC that put together the recent Modern Baseball Era ballot:

The Historical Overview Committee, which determined the Modern Baseball Era ballot this fall, is comprised of 11 and a half veteran historians: Bob Elliott (formerly Toronto Sun); Jim Henneman (formerly Baltimore Sun); Rick Hummel (St. Louis Post-Dispatch); Steve Hirdt (Elias Sports Bureau); Bill Madden (formerly New York Daily News); Jack O’Connell (BBWAA); Jim Reeves (formerly Fort Worth Star-Telegram); Tracy Ringolsby (MLB.com); Glenn Schwarz (formerly San Francisco Chronicle); Dave van Dyck (formerly Chicago Tribune); Mark Whicker (Los Angeles News Group); and ^^^ (of Baseball Think Factory trolling)

(Meant mostly in good fun)
   73. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 04:34 PM (#5619942)
This question (a) compares a highly subjective aesthetic scale to a highly precise measurement of batting value; and (b) downgrades the more subtle elements of athleticism.


I don't believe for a second that you don't have an appreciation for the various aesthetics of baseball or of the various ways in which athleticism on a baseball field is exhibited.

The argument only becomes desperate if you assert (let's say) that Dave Parker actually was a much better offensive ballplayer than Bobby Grich, because you like the components of his offense better, and so did people c1979. (Ha! I wasn't even trying to get 1979 in there. It's just destiny.)


The assertion would take out the words "was a much better offensive ballplayer" and substitute, "is a significantly better candidate for the recognition of posterity, including the Hall of Fame."
   74. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: February 05, 2018 at 04:42 PM (#5619951)
I just came to a realization: ^^^ is part of the Historical Overview Committee


There is literally nothing SBB isn't a masterful expert about, ya know. It comes with the fake law degree.
   75. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 04:46 PM (#5619955)
I don't believe for a second that you don't have an appreciation for the various aesthetics of baseball or of the various ways in which athleticism on a baseball field is exhibited

Man, I'm the Marcel Proust of appreciating baseball. The best-looking hitter I ever saw was Ben Grieve. Poetry in ####### motion. Stunk after a couple of years, of course, but he was a genuine beauty at the plate.
   76. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 05, 2018 at 04:52 PM (#5619962)
There is literally nothing SBB isn't a masterful expert about, ya know. It comes with the fake law degree.

Is Cargo Cultist or (Joey) still on this site under different names?
   77. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: February 05, 2018 at 04:57 PM (#5619964)
Is Cargo Cultist or (Joey) still on this site under different names?


I have not seen either in a long time.
   78. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 05:12 PM (#5619972)
CC still shows up occasionally.
   79. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 05, 2018 at 05:16 PM (#5619975)

I have not seen either in a long time


I remember Cargo Cultist was a Vietnam veteran and when Ken Burns documentary came out in Sept, I was looking for comments from him but I believe he had disappeared from BBTF by then

   80. Dennis Eclairskey, closer Posted: February 05, 2018 at 05:18 PM (#5619976)
CC still shows up occasionally

OK thanks, he must just not be commenting on any of the stories I read. Usually HOF debates bring out CC
   81. Rally Posted: February 05, 2018 at 06:50 PM (#5620023)
Eddie Gaedel at 3’7 is 1 for 1 in drawing walks, and 4-4 in getting an MLB pitcher to miss the strike zone. Someone like Alexi Amarista, a few inches over 5 feet tall, has a below average MLB walk rate. Somewhere in the middle a player is big enough to have a viable strike zone.

I have a 9 year old girl, she’s about 4’5. Not that I’d let anyone throw 90 MPH near her, so who knows?
   82. Ziggy's screen name Posted: February 05, 2018 at 06:50 PM (#5620024)
I made the mistake of reading this thread before logging in. It's much better now.

And IIRC Joey got banned.
   83. SoSH U at work Posted: February 05, 2018 at 07:01 PM (#5620028)
And IIRC Joey got banned.


Temporarily. He got reinstated, and has been back a few times, but he hasn't stuck around.

Eddie Gaedel at 3’7 is 1 for 1 in drawing walks, and 4-4 in getting an MLB pitcher to miss the strike zone. Someone like Alexi Amarista, a few inches over 5 feet tall, has a below average MLB walk rate. Somewhere in the middle a player is big enough to have a viable strike zone.


The ban is unnecessary, especially since I hear little Rally can really hit. Pitchers prepared to face him would throw Eddie Gaedel three strikes before four balls often enough to make him not worth a roster spot.
   84. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: February 05, 2018 at 08:09 PM (#5620067)
All it requires to draw a walk is for the pitcher not to be able to throw three strikes before he throws four balls. A nine-year-old girl, in 600 PAs in which she never takes the bat off her shoulder, would probably draw at least a dozen walks. At least. A major league hitter who never takes the bat off his shoulder would probably draw three dozen or thereabouts.


That is the dumbest thing ever posted on this site.

You know I was kind of digging your value vs aesthetic argument of the BB vs the base hit. But that above is just inane.

There are a lot of players who are actually trying to get on base who didn't get more then 36 BB last season(Johnathan Schoop, Mike moosetacos and Jose Abreu - - 3 really good players last year to name just a few)
   85. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 08:11 PM (#5620069)
I am working on an analysis, but first I need to figure out whether 9-year-old girls with .020 on-base percentages are the new market inefficiency.
   86. John DiFool2 Posted: February 05, 2018 at 08:32 PM (#5620075)
I see no need to apologize for not going goo-goo-ga-ga over a player doing something a nine-year-old girl who's never played baseball could do


This is without a doubt your most trollish argument ever. And that's saying a lot. Well done. It's like Babe Ruth shattering the single season HR ecord in 1920, and then hitting 5 more the next year.

You can't possibly believe that nonsense, you clearly don't expect anyone else to believe it, and your only purpose is to get a rise out of others.


This site really needs a Tachy Goes to Coventry option for dealing with certain kinds of trolls.


If we are going on about long-lost souls here, whatever happened to Backlasher?
   87. -- Posted: February 05, 2018 at 08:46 PM (#5620078)
There are a lot of players who are actually trying to get on base who didn't get more then 36 BB last season(Johnathan Schoop, Mike moosetacos and Jose Abreu - - 3 really good players last year to name just a few)


Sure, but that's because they swing the bat.
   88. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:05 PM (#5620085)
Sure, but that's because they swing the bat.


If they never swung the bat, they wouldn't draw any walks you twit, just like your mythical 9 year old girl..
   89. BDC Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:14 PM (#5620086)
I often appreciate the fact that baseball is a sport where someone could come off the street and succeed to some degree at some aspect. This is part of its appeal. There has never been a day in my life when I could have driven past LeBron James to the basket (well, maybe when I was 30 years old and he was four), or a day when I could have blocked an NFL defensive tackle. But put me at major-league shortstop and I would catch a soft liner right at me once in a while, for a fielding percentage of about .033; and eventually after many a plate appearance some pitcher might walk me, if he was really, really tired. Or drunk, in which case I might also draw a Hit By Pitch.

This dynamic, whereby the man or 9-year-old girl) in the street could have some utterly trivial success in a sport, should not be confused with actual major-league-level skill for catching baseballs or drawing walks, not that any more than one poster here is thus confusing it :)
   90. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 05, 2018 at 09:26 PM (#5620093)
This dynamic, whereby the man or 9-year-old girl) in the street could have some utterly trivial success in a sport, should not be confused with actual major-league-level skill for catching baseballs or drawing walks, not that any more than one poster here is thus confusing it :)


You could drive past Lebron if he slipped and fell. You could catch a TD pass in the Super Bowl if the defense left you wide open. And a 9 year old girl could draw a walk if the pitcher doesn't try, or has a 1 in 1000 occurence of not being able to throw three BP fastballs for strike in 6 attempts (the equivilant of Lebron falling down.). None of these mean anything WRT driving past Lebron, catching a TD pass, or draing a walk against a picher who is trying to get you out an not give you anything good to hit.
   91. DL from MN Posted: February 06, 2018 at 08:27 AM (#5620176)
You could drive past Lebron if he slipped and fell.


Bill Hader scored on him in the movies but that was probably just movie magic.

You could catch a TD pass in the Super Bowl if the defense left you wide open.


Just ask Foles!
   92. Rally Posted: February 06, 2018 at 08:36 AM (#5620179)
When a pitcher has a 3-0 count against the opposing pitcher, he only throws a strike about 75% of the time. Some people here are greatly overestimating how much any pitcher can control their pitches.
   93. Rally Posted: February 06, 2018 at 08:36 AM (#5620180)
Just ask Foles!


If I ended up in that situation, my catch attempt would probably look like Tom Brady's.
   94. SoSH U at work Posted: February 06, 2018 at 08:48 AM (#5620184)
When a pitcher has a 3-0 count against the opposing pitcher, he only throws a strike about 75% of the time. Some people here are greatly overestimating how much any pitcher can control their pitches.


Do you think Eddie Gaedel would be an effective major league batter? If so, then at least one player is seriously underestimating how much any pitcher can control his pitches.

   95. -- Posted: February 06, 2018 at 09:37 AM (#5620200)
If they never swung the bat, they wouldn't draw any walks you twit, just like your mythical 9 year old girl..


This is nuts. Hard to have a serious discussion when this kind of obviously untrue stuff is asserted, and then the person who asserts it throws in an insult for good measure.

And of course I never said anything in the same galaxy as "A nine-year-old girl could be an effective major league hitter." All I said is that drawing a walk is something a nine-year-old girl could do, which is undeniably true.
   96. -- Posted: February 06, 2018 at 09:39 AM (#5620202)
And a 9 year old girl could draw a walk if the pitcher doesn't try, or has a 1 in 1000 occurence of not being able to throw three BP fastballs for strike in 6 attempts (the equivilant of Lebron falling down.).


It's not even close to 1 in 1,000.
   97. BDC Posted: February 06, 2018 at 09:43 AM (#5620204)
Some people here are greatly overestimating how much any pitcher can control their pitches

This is true. I was converted on this matter by Walt Davis' pointing out, years ago, that Al Leiter had a 6% walk rate as a batter. I revise my own projected major-league OBP to .060 :)
   98. -- Posted: February 06, 2018 at 09:50 AM (#5620206)
Brian Moehler appears to be among the worst, if not the worst, hitting pitcher of the last 25 years. Link He slashed .045/.098/.054 -- the walking definition of a non-threat.

He walked 9 times in 232 plate appearances.

   99. BDC Posted: February 06, 2018 at 09:59 AM (#5620215)
In any case, Bear, you are now helping us make the point against you. A trivial ability to record a technical success at something does not have any bearing on that skill at a professional level.

If I go to a three-year-old for a dental consultation, lay out X-rays of all my teeth, and ask him which one needs to be pulled, he has a 1-in-32 chance of giving excellent advice. This does not mean that the chief of oral surgery at Thomas Jefferson is doing something any three-year-old could do.
   100. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: February 06, 2018 at 10:51 AM (#5620258)
Bill Hader scored on him in the movies but that was probably just movie magic.

I would have to assume so. I mean, he also scored with Amy Schumer in that movie, and nobody ever does that in real life.
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