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Monday, November 26, 2018

Thibs’ Hall of Fame Tracker

Primate Thibs’ indispensable Hall of Fame tool is back for another year.

SoSH U at work Posted: November 26, 2018 at 03:02 PM | 1104 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hall of fame, son of gizmo

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   1001. Booey Posted: January 08, 2019 at 09:59 PM (#5803577)
flip
   1002. Sunday silence Posted: January 09, 2019 at 09:50 AM (#5803610)
Isnt it funny how all the "worst players in MLB history" discussions inevitably lead to central defenders Whether its Ray Schalk as worst HoFer, or maybe its Rabbit Maranville, who someone talked Managers into playing him at ss for 20 years. Even when we talk of lesser known, "truly for real" all time worst players is often a catcher or SS. Why do you think that is?

I was looking at Mario Mendoza's numbers and he managed to last in MLB for 8 years and produced a total WAR of --2.6 which has to be among the worst. But why did the Pirates stick him out there as a part time player for 5 years when they were still a powerful team? His 2 best def. seasons '76/'80 would extrapolate out to saving like 12-14 def runs in full time play. His off would extapolate out to about -20 runs most years, or possible -50 if you look at SEA in '79.

Why would people play him at all, if his bat outweigh his def by like 2x or 3x? that makes no sense does it. Well I guess you could argue that Mendoza was really only a part time player and you could insert him as defensive replacement at the right moment in the game to take advantage of his def. I dont think the pirates really used him like that, but a case can be made for that...

So Mendoza is not really a good example of what im talking about but it may help to illustrate a point. Isnt there one player at least ONE PLAYER in MLB history who's FIELDiNG outweighed his lack of hitting? I mean going by this DRS bull #### I dont think anyone springs to mind. instead we get this litany of guys like MUddy Ruel or Ray Schalk who either shouldnt be in MLB or shouldn't be held in high esteem because they couldnt hit.

People talk of the "Mendoza line" all the time, and act they understand its repercussions. But I dont think a lot of stat people really take this concept out to its logical extreme. I mean take the flip side, lets call it the "Arky Vaughan Line". That would be the line where someone's great hitting begins to outweigh their awful defense...

Oh but no one ever mentions that right? Cause in some years he actually did manage to step up his play and play pretty good Ss but there were other years when he had to have been bad; did he make like 48 errors one year?

Or how about the "Duke Snider Line"? WHere someone's hitting is at least equal to the number of def runs they've lost due to their fielding range. Somehow we never manage to hear about these types.

Isnt that really curious though? How can we find all these guys who A) Great hitting vastly outweighs poor fielding, and B) Great fielding barely overcomes bad hitting (the Aparacio line, or the Mazeroski line or the Gary Pettis line) But we NEVER hear about:

C) Great fielding outweighs bad hitting (the Mendoza line) or D) Bad fielding outweighs great hitting (the Kingman Line, or the DUke Snider Line or maybe the Manny Line)

I mean there's all sorts of ways you can take this Mendoza line analogy and look at in different ways, and you start to get all manner of conclusions that dont really make sense do they?

I mean isnt there at least one player in MLb history who fielded as bad as he hit great?
   1003. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: January 09, 2019 at 10:08 AM (#5803617)
I mean isnt there at least one player in MLb history who fielded as bad as he hit great?


Jeter.

If you are looking for someone who's fielding completely negated great hitting, then probably not, for long careers and a reasonable definition of great hitting. Among players with at least 100 batting runs, the one who comes closest is Michael Cuddyer, with 116 batting runs, and -101 fielding runs. Adam Dunn is 219 batting, -171 fielding. If you throw positional adjustment into the mix there may be some. Cuddyer for one with -53. Dunn -106.
   1004. Rally Posted: January 09, 2019 at 10:14 AM (#5803623)
I mean isnt there at least one player in MLb history who fielded as bad as he hit great?


How about Adam Dunn 2009 - +32 batting, -43 fielding?

Even when we talk of lesser known, "truly for real" all time worst players is often a catcher or SS. Why do you think that is?


Only if you don't acknowledge that a catcher or shortstop doesn't have to hit like OF and 1B. I think around here at least, George Kelly would get more votes for worst HOFer than Rabbit or Schalk. I was of that opinion for a while until I found out Tommy McCarthy (retired 1896) existed and was put into the hall by the veteran's committee. Schalk and Ferrell (who couldn't outhit his pitching brother) are bad selections. Given his defense at the most important fielding position and his longevity, I don't think I'd put Rabbit on a list of worst 10, maybe worst 25 HOFers.

Edit: I owe a coke
   1005. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: January 09, 2019 at 10:27 AM (#5803630)
How about Adam Dunn 2009 - +32 batting, -43 fielding?


For single season, there's a bunch.

Players with at least 20 batting runs, and more negative fielding runs:

Dunn 2009
Michael Young 2005 (the only other one with 30 batting runs)
Rick Monday 1974
Bryce harper 2018
Rhys Hoskins 2018
Miguel Andujar 2018
Dunn 2008
Gus bell 1956
   1006. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 09, 2019 at 10:41 AM (#5803635)
Isnt that really curious though? How can we find all these guys who A) Great hitting vastly outweighs poor fielding, and B) Great fielding barely overcomes bad hitting (the Aparacio line, or the Mazeroski line or the Gary Pettis line) But we NEVER hear about:

C) Great fielding outweighs bad hitting (the Mendoza line) or D) Bad fielding outweighs great hitting (the Kingman Line, or the DUke Snider Line or maybe the Manny Line)

I mean there's all sorts of ways you can take this Mendoza line analogy and look at in different ways, and you start to get all manner of conclusions that dont really make sense do they?

I mean isnt there at least one player in MLb history who fielded as bad as he hit great?


I think the reality is that there's just a much wider range of possible performance for hitting than fielding.

100% of young, athletic guys can handle ~80% of the chances an MLB fielder can. There's no one in the potential talent pool (people who are athletic enough to hit MLB pitching and run the bases) that is going to make only 50% of the plays.

On the other hand, there are a ton of super athletic guys who would be above average MLB fielders, who would put up a .050/.050/.050 line against MLB pitching.
   1007. Howie Menckel Posted: January 09, 2019 at 10:49 AM (#5803638)
or maybe its Rabbit Maranville, who someone talked Managers into playing him at ss for 20 years.

pedant alert, but Rabbit only got 14 years of 100+ G at SS, plus got in 74 and 60 G in other seasons (and 26 SS G as a rookie). also purely a 2B at age 32, 40, and 41.
   1008. Rally Posted: January 09, 2019 at 11:13 AM (#5803653)
I think the reality is that there's just a much wider range of possible performance for hitting than fielding.


This is definitely true. Your 9 batting spots are 100% responsible for all variation between your team's hitting and the league average.

Your 9 fielding spots are responsible for what, 30, 40% of the defensive variance? With the rest being the responsibility of the pitcher.

So the average everyday position player is responsible for 11% of the offense, but maybe 4% of the defense. Not all positions are equal of course. Maybe first base is 2-3% and shortstop 6-7%. Still less than offense. And if you have a very bad defender most teams will put him in the spot where he can do the least damage. Just like the worst hitters will bad 8th or 9th. But there is a bigger variation between the number of fielding chances players get at easy/tough positions than there is in the number of PA at the different batting spots.
   1009. Rally Posted: January 09, 2019 at 11:19 AM (#5803655)
I can invent a type of baseball where the average fielder has as much impact on run prevention as the average hitter has on run creation:

1. Eliminate the pitcher. Someone stands on pitcher's mound, but he's just a fielder. Machine pitching.
2. Make it tough to hit, 110 MPH, unpredictable movement
3. But always in the strike zone, no balls
4. No strikeouts either, keep going until ball is put in play
5. To prevent the Joey Gallos from swinging from the heels, missing 30 times until he finally whallops one, every 3 strikes you have to trade in your bat for something less dense.
6. Someone who tries the all or nothing approach will end up with a bat that will only dribble the ball a few feet in front of the catcher.
7. Better to put a ball in play hard on an early pitch.
   1010. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: January 09, 2019 at 11:37 AM (#5803666)
1. Eliminate the pitcher. Someone stands on pitcher's mound, but he's just a fielder. Machine pitching.
2. Make it tough to hit, 110 MPH, unpredictable movement
3. But always in the strike zone, no balls
4. No strikeouts either, keep going until ball is put in play
5. To prevent the Joey Gallos from swinging from the heels, missing 30 times until he finally whallops one, every 3 strikes you have to trade in your bat for something less dense.
6. Someone who tries the all or nothing approach will end up with a bat that will only dribble the ball a few feet in front of the catcher.
7. Better to put a ball in play hard on an early pitch.


Sounds like a lot of 15 inning 1-0 games. 110 MPH with unpredictable movement? Sounds like a lot of swings and misses and weak contact.
   1011. Rally Posted: January 09, 2019 at 11:52 AM (#5803679)
Well, that just a guess. You could tune it down to 100 with less movement to get a game with exciting balls in play, but hitters might be able to handle 110:

Every pitch is designed to go into the strike zone. You eliminate the "do I swing or not" decision that hitters have to make in a fraction of a second. Plus you can eliminate the uncertainty of "this next pitch might be at my head", at least to the point the machinery is reliable.

Hitters are so good that given those constraints, they might be able to handle a machine throwing pitches that would be unhittable if thrown by an unpredictable human pitcher. But you don't want to make it too easy, because we are not trying to create homerun derby here.
   1012. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: January 09, 2019 at 12:21 PM (#5803697)
On the whole "how bad at defense do you have to be to outdo good offense", I think of it this way: Teams increasingly eliminate the defensive player from the position altogether on a shift, daring the hitter to bunt down the third base line or whatever, and virtually no hitter hits the ball in the vacated area.

How can the defensive value of players not be decreasing as the effective use of data to put players in exact places is increasing, and hitters are saying, "I'm not able to change the way I hit to adjust to the defensive shifts".

Then, add to that the decrease in the number of balls in play, as strikeout rates continue to increase, and the value of defense is lowered further.

Defense is really about two things, right?

1) What percentage of balls hit to a certain area can you reach, relative to others at that position?
2) What percentage of the balls you reach do you turn into outs?

Defensive opportunities have dropped by about 25% since 2007 for outfielder, and by about 20% for middle infielders since 2007. They have declined by very little for corner infielders since 2007. (1st basemen see by far the fewest defensive opportunities.) Plate appearances haven't gone down by the same percentage since 2007, obviously. And the gap between the best and worst defensive, say, shortstop has generally narrowed over the history of baseball, as scouting, analytics, equipment, and the drop in opportunities have all narrowed the gap. It would be virtually impossible for an above-average hitter to be so bad at defense that you would be better off to put a weak-hitting glove guy in their place, in today's baseball...
   1013. Rally Posted: January 09, 2019 at 01:42 PM (#5803763)
It would be virtually impossible for an above-average hitter to be so bad at defense that you would be better off to put a weak-hitting glove guy in their place, in today's baseball...


It's still possible if you play someone outside of their optimal position. Rhys Hoskins was +21 batting, -26 fielding. Overall 0.5 WAR. I can easily imagine a weak hitting defensive player beating that, even in left field. Think Jarrod Dyson, not the .189 hitting 2018 version, but the 86 OPS+ guy he was in KC. Won't happen again as the team has cleared first base for Hoskins.
   1014. DavidFoss Posted: January 09, 2019 at 01:56 PM (#5803766)
It's still possible if you play someone outside of their optimal position. Rhys Hoskins was +21 batting, -26 fielding. Overall 0.5 WAR.

Top batting runs seasons from below-replacement players:

year_ID,team_ID,name_common,runs_bat,runs_defense,WAR
2009
,WSN,Adam Dunn,32.06,-43.0,-0.36
2011
,FLA,Logan Morrison,11.14,-26.0,-0.62
2018
,CIN,Jesse Winker,10.41,-14.0,-0.09
1974
,CHC,Jerry Morales,9.73,-21.9,-0.41
1995
,DET,Juan Samuel,8.98,-12.7,-0.11
1964
,CLE,Bob Chance,8.96,-13.9,-0.26
1992
,TEX,Kevin Reimer,8.53,-22.8,-0.52
1964
,PIT,Jerry Lynch,8.21,-16.2,-0.05
1884
,PHK,Joe Flynn,8.19,-11.0,-0.23
2002
,NYM,Mo Vaughn,8.16,-16.3,-0.44 
   1015. alilisd Posted: January 09, 2019 at 01:57 PM (#5803767)
George Kelly would get more votes for worst HOFer than Rabbit or Schalk. I was of that opinion for a while until I found out Tommy McCarthy (retired 1896) existed and was put into the hall by the veteran's committee.


I'd like to throw Chick Hafey and Ross Youngs into the discussion. They might not outpoll McCarthy or Kelly, but deserve some consideration ;-)
   1016. Mefisto Posted: January 09, 2019 at 02:08 PM (#5803774)
Ross Youngs was a fine ballplayer. He put up 30.8 WAR in 4300 PAs by the age of 27. That's a HOF pace, or nearly so anyway. He just never got there because he died. He doesn't belong in the HOF because he didn't actually have the career, but he's nowhere near the worst player in the Hall.
   1017. BrianBrianson Posted: January 09, 2019 at 02:18 PM (#5803779)
Indeed. Lloyd Waner put up 24 WAR in 8300 PAs. That makes it fearsome hard to entertain the idea that Ross Young was the worst HoFer.
   1018. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 09, 2019 at 02:21 PM (#5803781)
Lloyd Waner put up 24 WAR in 8300 PAs.

Didn't a lot of voters think they were voting for his brother? Or is that apocryphal?
   1019. RJ in TO Posted: January 09, 2019 at 02:29 PM (#5803786)
Didn't a lot of voters think they were voting for his brother? Or is that apocryphal?

The story I heard was that the voters were presented with his brother's stats, under his name. It may be true, or it may not. Even if it's true, I doubt anyone in the room at the time would have been willing to admit it afterward.

So, maybe?
   1020. Rally Posted: January 09, 2019 at 03:09 PM (#5803806)
The story I heard was that the voters were presented with his brother's stats, under his name. It may be true, or it may not. Even if it's true, I doubt anyone in the room at the time would have been willing to admit it afterward.


Is this the story where Bill James commented that if true it would have been the first time the veteran's committee ever paid attention to the stats?
   1021. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: January 09, 2019 at 03:14 PM (#5803808)
Is this the story where Bill James commented that if true it would have been the first time the veteran's committee ever paid attention to the stats?


yes.
   1022. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 09, 2019 at 04:39 PM (#5803851)
The story I heard was that the voters were presented with his brother's stats, under his name. It may be true, or it may not. Even if it's true, I doubt anyone in the room at the time would have been willing to admit it afterward.

So, maybe?


Is this the story where Bill James commented that if true it would have been the first time the veteran's committee ever paid attention to the stats?

I have no trouble believing that the Frankie Frisch Superfriends looked at a sheet with "Lloyd Waner" and "3152 hits" and said, "Waner? He was great. Over 3000 hits. I thought we elected him already? Put him in."

Most of them were probably drunk during the meeting. The rest were senile.
   1023. Adam Starblind Posted: January 09, 2019 at 04:52 PM (#5803859)
why did the Pirates stick him out there as a part time player for 5 years when they were still a powerful team? His 2 best def. seasons '76/'80 would extrapolate out to saving like 12-14 def runs in full time play. His off would extapolate out to about -20 runs most years, or possible -50 if you look at SEA in '79.

Why would people play him at all, if his bat outweigh his def by like 2x or 3x?


Easy--the Pirates didn't know that. It was the 1970s.
   1024. jingoist Posted: January 09, 2019 at 04:57 PM (#5803867)
“son, fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life”
   1025. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: January 09, 2019 at 07:04 PM (#5803902)
I was looking at Mario Mendoza's numbers and he managed to last in MLB for 8 years and produced a total WAR of --2.6 which has to be among the worst. But why did the Pirates stick him out there as a part time player for 5 years when they were still a powerful team? His 2 best def. seasons '76/'80 would extrapolate out to saving like 12-14 def runs in full time play. His off would extapolate out to about -20 runs most years, or possible -50 if you look at SEA in '79.

Why would people play him at all, if his bat outweigh his def by like 2x or 3x? that makes no sense does it. Well I guess you could argue that Mendoza was really only a part time player and you could insert him as defensive replacement at the right moment in the game to take advantage of his def. I dont think the pirates really used him like that, but a case can be made for that...


Mendoza had less than 100 PA every year in Pittsburgh except for his first. He averaged less than 2 PA per game every year with the team, and started less than half of the games he played in as a Pirate. He was an end-of-the-bench player at a time when teams didn't have 13 pitchers and could afford a situational defender more than they can today. (Also, the Pittsburgh team for which he played the most started Frank Taveras at shortstop, who was nearly as bad a hitter as Mendoza - 60 OPS+ to 46 - and posted a -13 in the field. Mendoza arguably should have played more that year.)

Then you get to the '79 and '80 Mariners, who were a recent expansion team and therefore lousy (95 and 103 losses) and would have been lousy regardless of who played shortstop. Even for them, Mendoza wasn't exactly a full-time player; he didn't come close to qualifying for the batting title either season.

So the answer to "why did Mendoza play so much" was (a) he didn't, in Pittsburgh, and (b) because his team was bad, in Seattle. The '81 Rangers were the only decent team for which Mendoza had any real playing time, and their other shortstop options (shortstoptions?) were just about as bad as Mendoza. (I guess Mark Wagner did have a career year in '81, with 0.9 WAR in 95 plate appearances. But he played more in '82 and was bad enough that the Rangers sometimes resorted to Doug Flynn, who would end up with -6.9 WAR in his career, at short.)
   1026. Srul Itza Posted: January 09, 2019 at 07:07 PM (#5803904)
fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life


Don't knock it until you've tried it. Since there were sufficient members of that club to elect a President, it may have something to offer.
   1027. Sunday silence Posted: January 09, 2019 at 08:15 PM (#5803915)
well lets try this as a research exercise. Find all the players with the worst career WAR, but played min. 6 seasons, say. To establish bad players but who had enuf to stick around. Repeat for another period say 8 seasons.

If it turns out that majority of these players are central defenders, or at least a disproportional number are, then wouldnt that be some indication that are defensive understanding is wrong?
   1028. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: January 09, 2019 at 08:21 PM (#5803916)
well lets try this as a research exercise. Find all the players with the worst career WAR, but played min. 6 seasons, say. To establish bad players but who had enuf to stick around. Repeat for another period say 8 seasons.

If it turns out that majority of these players are central defenders, or at least a disproportional number are, then wouldnt that be some indication that are defensive understanding is wrong?


Even if you get the result you're expecting, you're going to run into an argumental wall here. Are the numbers skewed because the statistics are missing some amount of value in the up-the-middle positions, or is it because teams improperly valued defense vs. offense at these positions in the past? There's no convincing way to prove either position, as far as I can tell.
   1029. bbmck Posted: January 09, 2019 at 10:10 PM (#5803936)
CF 2000-01 Peter Bergeron
CF 1984-86 George Wright
SS 1995-96 Andujar Cedeno
SS 1987-90 Andres Thomas
SS 1984-85 Jackie Gutierrez

2B 1999-00 Mickey Morandini
2B 1992-93 Jose Lind
UT 2012-13 Michael Young
OF 1991-92 Mark Carreon
1B 2014-16 Ryan Howard

Generally terrible teams and young players so why not hope the young cost controlled player improves. Morandini being acquired by a competitive Jays team that has Homer Bush 33 OPS+ c/sh-ould have just given the job the 35 year old Craig Grebeck. If the Jays have a problem in LF and are willing to trade hyped prospect Rob Ducey (maybe over-hyped because he's Canadian) they must have had better options than Morandini who had sucked in ample playing time for a season and a half.

If Jackie Guiterrez is a 1B who can't hit the Red Sox probably have someone in the farm system who might be able to hit MLB pitching and play 1B but didn't apparently have a better SS option on the farm. After they trade Jackie to the Orioles for Sammy Stewart the job goes to 22 year old Rey Quinones who wasn't much of an improvement and is presumably worse at 21 if you move on from Jackie sooner. Traded Mark Clear for SS Ed Romero and they traded Quinones and PTBNLs for Dave Henderson and SS Spike Owen. None of the SS play all that well but every team needs at least 2 SS, if Ripken gets injured then Guiterrez would have most likely had another season as a sub-replacement SS.

Ryan Howard and his contract is the main way some teams will keep playing a sub-replacement player at a position there is presumably ample potential replacements in every farm system. Up the middle replacement level players might not be readily available to all teams and if you're winning 60-70 games that season there is little motivation to try to find one.
   1030. bachslunch Posted: January 10, 2019 at 05:12 PM (#5804308)
Curious ballot from Michael Knisley, though I’ve seen worse small ones: Helton, Kent, Edgar, Mo, Wagner, Walker.

Both closers got his vote, but none of the starters did — not even Halladay. Glad he’s voting for Edgar. Wondering if he’s a Colorado based voter given Helton and Walker on a ballot this small.

Could have been worse, though — have seen small ballots like this with Vizquel checked off.
   1031. QLE Posted: January 10, 2019 at 08:53 PM (#5804385)
Wondering if he’s a Colorado based voter given Helton and Walker on a ballot this small.


Former writer for the Denver Post- but, strangely enough, he left the paper before the Rockies came to town, and the descriptions I've found of his career since then suggest he hasn't been operating from that state since.
   1032. bookbook Posted: January 10, 2019 at 11:27 PM (#5804409)
Isn’t the ultimate example of great fielding outweighing terrible hitting actually Mark Belanger? He’s no HOFer, but his D turned his career 68 OPS+ (.300/.280/.580) into 41 BWAR, almost 2.5 per year.
   1033. bbmck Posted: January 11, 2019 at 12:28 AM (#5804424)
Min 5000 PA: Position Player WAR / (OPS+/100)

100.3 - Willie Mays 156 OPS+
92.3 - Hank Aaron 155
89.9 - Ty Cobb 168
89.5 - Barry Bonds 182
88.4 - Ozzie Smith 87

87.6 - Rickey Henderson 127
87.3 - Eddie Collins 142
86.7 - Honus Wagner 151
85.6 - Cal Ripken Jr 112
85.4 - Tris Speaker 157

84.1 - Alex Rodriguez 140
82.5 - Adrian Beltre 116
80.6 - Stan Musial 159
78.7 - Babe Ruth 206
76.2 - Joe Morgan 132
75.4 - Brooks Robinson 104

Next best below 110 OPS+

28th 68.0 Luis Aparicio 82
33rd 67.0 Pee Wee Reese 99
34th 67.0 Bobby Wallace 105
39th 64.8 Ivan Rodriguez 106
45th 63.8 Kenny Lofton 107
46th 63.4 Willie Randolph 104

54th 60.8 Buddy Bell 109
57th 60.1 Mark Belanger 68
59th 59.7 Bert Campaneris 89
68th 57.3 Willie Davis 106
75th 55.6 Omar Vizquel 82
76th 55.4 Ichiro Suzuki 107
   1034. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 11, 2019 at 12:45 AM (#5804427)
[1027] The first guy that came to my mind was Juan Castro who played 17 seasons with -5 WAR.
   1035. Rally Posted: January 11, 2019 at 09:15 AM (#5804474)
Doug Flynn, who would end up with -6.9 WAR in his career, at short


People thought Flynn was a good defender, he just wasn't. At least as far as the stats can tell. He was a -20 defender for his career. Had he been a +50 defender, or +5 per 400 PA, he would have graded out at replacement level.

Flynn was a gold glove winner in 1980 so there is some evidence that people thought he could field. In reality he was a sure handed defender who didn't make errors, but he didn't have a lot of range. His RF9 are below average at both short and second. He was close enough to average as a 2B defender, but just didn't have the tools for short. He played short a little over 20% of his innings and most of the negative fielding runs come from his time there.
   1036. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 11, 2019 at 09:19 AM (#5804478)
Can you explain the list in #1033? Babe Ruth had 162.1 career position player WAR, not 78.7, for example. What am I missing?
   1037. Mefisto Posted: January 11, 2019 at 09:32 AM (#5804487)
He divided career WAR by OPS+ and then multiplied by 100.
   1038. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 11, 2019 at 09:48 AM (#5804499)

Got it, thanks.
   1039. alilisd Posted: January 11, 2019 at 12:26 PM (#5804651)
Ross Youngs was a fine ballplayer. He put up 30.8 WAR in 4300 PAs by the age of 27. That's a HOF pace, or nearly so anyway. He just never got there because he died. He doesn't belong in the HOF because he didn't actually have the career, but he's nowhere near the worst player in the Hall.


My apologies to Mr. Youngs then. I looked at who he played for, when he played for them, and when the VC put him in, and lumped him in with the rest of the Frisch crowd. While I must concede he is "nowhere near the worst player in the Hall," I still would not consider him on a HOF pace; a HOVG pace, sure, but a RF with a 138 OPS+ (using your through age 27 cutoff), and only 2 seasons above 4 WAR, is not showing the peak necessary for a HOF player. His WAR7 is at 30.3 with the average HOF RF at 42.9, and at 27 he's well into his prime, even given a full career he's not going to add significantly to that peak/WAR7 score. Career-wise he's not likely to approach anything near an average HOF WAR either. It's highly unlikely he would even double that 30.8 over the next 7 years. Paul Waner only put up 36.4 WAR from 28-34, and that included a bounce up to 6.9 at age 33, which matched his career highs from 8-9 years earlier. Youngs was never the player that Waner was. Waner averaged 5.5 WAR his first 7 seasons, and then 4.2 WAR his next 7 seasons. That's a bit more than a 20% decline. Just a 20% decline gives Youngs about 24 more WAR over the next 7 years, which given the era is pretty darn optimistic. For example, from 1921 to 1939 only 7 primarily RF (65% of games) had at least 3000 PA's from 28-34, and only Waner and Heilmann had at least 24 WAR (36 for Waner, 42 for Heilmann). The rest were 20.5 or below. It seems reasonable to expect Youngs to end up about 20 as well. IOW, it would be rather optimistic to see him as on a HOF pace. HOVG is entirely reasonable, but he's going to have to really produce to be anything more than a borderline HOF candidate at best, IMO. YMMV.
   1040. Dolf Lucky Posted: January 12, 2019 at 07:38 PM (#5804963)
Has there ever been a year where more players were voted into the Hall then were eliminated off the ballot?
   1041. SoSH U at work Posted: January 12, 2019 at 07:49 PM (#5804966)

Has there ever been a year where more players were voted into the Hall then were eliminated off the ballot?



Under the current rules, I can't imagine it. But it won't happen this year either. Thibs' tracker doesn't list everyone. There will be more than a dozen players eliminated from this year's ballot (guys like Ankiel, Juan Pierre, Travis Hafner etc.)
   1042. Dolf Lucky Posted: January 12, 2019 at 08:13 PM (#5804977)
Thanks. Didn't realize the tracker didn't have everyone.
   1043. BrianBrianson Posted: January 12, 2019 at 08:52 PM (#5804984)
and only 2 seasons above 4 WAR


If you multiple by 162/154 to put him in a 162 game context, he has five seasons of four or more WAR.
   1044. bbmck Posted: January 12, 2019 at 09:05 PM (#5804985)
The tracker lists everyone, hit the + above the AK column to see the other 14 players on the ballot. 3 votes for Michael Young, 2 votes for Miguel Tejada and 12 with no votes.
   1045. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: January 12, 2019 at 11:32 PM (#5804996)
Has there ever been a year where more players were voted into the Hall then were eliminated off the ballot?


Perhaps another way to ask a similar question: How often does the returning candidates list get smaller?

In 2018, two players fell off the list (Vlad, Hoffman) and three got added (Rolen, Vizquel, and A. Jones)
In 2017, three fell off (Bagwell, L. Smith, Raines) and two got added (Vlad and Manny)
In 2016, three fell off (Trammell, McGwire, and Garciaparra) and two got added (Hoffman and Wagner)
In 2015, two fell off (Mattingly and Biggio) and two got added (Sheffield and Garciaparra)
In 2014, two fell off (Morris and Palmeiro), and two got added (Mussina and Kent)
In 2013, two fell off (Dale Murphy and Bernie Williams) and and 6 (!) got added (Biggio, Piazza, Schilling, Bonds, Clemens, and Sosa).
In 2012, two fell off (Larkin and Juan Gonzalez), and one got added (Bernie Williams)
In 2011, four fell off (Alomar, Blyleven, Dave Parker, and Harold Friggin' Baines), and four got added (Bagwell, Walker, Palmeiro and Juan Gonzalez)
In 2010, one fell off (Dawson), and four got added (Alomar, Larkin, Edgar, and McGriff).

Everybody currently on the ballot debuted in 2010 or later.
   1046. baxter Posted: January 13, 2019 at 02:34 PM (#5805086)
RE 1039, Youngs missed 3 weeks w/strep throat (which led to the kidney disease that killed him) in his best season, 1924 (SABR article on him). He was sick for part of that season as well as the last two seasons of his career. In attempting to extrapolate his career, one should consider that.

Had he been healthy, he may not have improved on his 1924 numbers. But, it does appear that his numbers fell dramatically due to illness.

A healthy Ross Youngs may not have been a HOF'er either, but he might have been closer than post 1039 asserts.
   1047. alilisd Posted: January 13, 2019 at 03:51 PM (#5805095)
If you multiple by 162/154 to put him in a 162 game context, he has five seasons of four or more WAR.


Seriously?
   1048. dlf Posted: January 13, 2019 at 04:10 PM (#5805098)
Thibs' tracker doesn't list everyone. There will be more than a dozen players eliminated from this year's ballot (guys like Ankiel, Juan Pierre, Travis Hafner etc.)


Nitpick: It does list them, but you have to click the little + above column AK to show the players waaaay down the list. Of the ones that appear when you do, only Miguel Tejada has any votes with two.
   1049. alilisd Posted: January 13, 2019 at 04:11 PM (#5805099)
Had he been healthy, he may not have improved on his 1924 numbers. But, it does appear that his numbers fell dramatically due to illness.

A healthy Ross Youngs may not have been a HOF'er either, but he might have been closer than post 1039 asserts


Which is why the post I was responding to, and in my response, we only considered his first 7 seasons, not his last two unhealthy seasons. Given his performance from 21-27, he would have likely improved his peak slightly, but not necessarily significantly' IOW, another couple of HOF-like seasons are reasonable to expect, but expecting him to string together 4 or 5 is not. He had only 2 HOF-like seasons in those 7 seasons, and 5 very good seasons. Given the same level of performance over the next 7 seasons, and a review of other RF from that era shows he would likely have some decline in that span, he would have a very low peak for a HOF.

I don't think there's anything inaccurate in my assertion. I said he would be solid HOVG and borderline, at best, HOF. To say otherwise is to say someone who already has 7 full major league seasons, and is going into his age 28 season, is going to significantly improve and start putting up consistent 5+ WAR seasons for the next 5 to 7 years. By that point in a career performance is well established, those who improve significantly after that period are the exception more than the norm. I don't think that's a realistic projection. Harry Hooper, another borderline VC selection from the Frisch era, was also a RF, but just a bit earlier than Youngs. He didn't hit as well, but WAR likes his D better. He was a lesser player than Youngs even so from 21-27, but he benefited offensively in his later career from becoming more of a platoon player, and perhaps from the transition to live ball. His career from 28 on, which was exceptionally healthy and long lived, giving him 35 WAR over 10 seasons and 6,046 PA's. That's a best case scenario for Youngs, an overly optimistic one I would say, but it still doesn't give him a HOF peak.
   1050. Mefisto Posted: January 13, 2019 at 04:36 PM (#5805102)
I don't disagree with anything you say about Youngs. My best guess is that he'd have ended up with 50-55 WAR, short of what we'd now consider a HOF career.

BUT, three factors make it likely that he'd have been elected with that career anyway. First, his last real season was 1924. That means he'd have played another 7 years or so during the peak of the offensive explosion of the late '20s. His counting stats would have looked very good indeed, and that would have mattered to all but the most recent HOF voters. Second, his career would have ended by roughly 1935, by which time he probably would have had another WC ring (the Giants won it in 1933), giving him 5 WS appearances and 3 WC. Then he would have come up for election sometime around 1940 and would very likely have been elected pretty easily (his comps through age 27 include Fred Clarke, Speaker, Flick, Burkett, Manush, and Heilman). Even using WAR, remember that there were far fewer players at the 50 WAR level then than there are now (about 30 or so back then).

If all the Frisch era selections were like Ross Youngs, rather than Highpockets Kelly, they would be much more defensible.
   1051. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: January 13, 2019 at 06:20 PM (#5805113)
If you multiple by 162/154 to put him in a 162 game context, he has five seasons of four or more WAR.

I mean, if we're being absurdly picky, the 3.8's would "only" become 3.997 when multiplied by 162/154.

Slightly more relevant (and this is important for everyone around this time), 1919 was a 140-game season, not 154. Similarly, 1918 was (for the Giants) a 124-game season, during which Youngs posted 3.0 WAR.

I tend to lean against straight-line adjusting WAR for schedule length, though; you can review my preferred method here if you want. Using this method, Youngs's 3.0 in 1918 is a 3.7, and his 3.9 in '19 is a 4.4. The multiplier for a 154-game season is basically the same (1.04 instead of 1.05).

The player who probably gets the biggest proportional boost from adjusting 1918-'19 is George Sisler, whose third-best season jumps from 6.8 WAR to 8.6, and whose fourth-best goes from 6.1 to 6.9. Throw in the basic schedule length bump for his other years, and suddenly you have a player with a legitimately great six-year peak.
   1052. BrianBrianson Posted: January 13, 2019 at 07:02 PM (#5805126)
I mean, if we're being absurdly picky, the 3.8's would "only" become 3.997 when multiplied by 162/154.


No, significant figures. Those 3.8s may actually be 3.82s (or 3.77 or whatever). So, you need to call them 4.0s. (The number of games in a season is a counting number, and thus should have infinite precision).

But, okay, my bad for not actually checking the season lengths.
   1053. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: January 13, 2019 at 07:14 PM (#5805128)
But, okay, my bad for not actually checking the season lengths.

Eh, nobody else remembers those shortened seasons either. They were now officially 100 years ago, and there wasn't a labor-based stoppage to cause a split season or a missed World Series or any of the other shenanigans that make the more recent short seasons so memorable.

And your point about significant figures is correct, of course; I was less than entirely serious in the 3.997 portion of the comment.
   1054. Mefisto Posted: January 13, 2019 at 09:35 PM (#5805175)
This discussion about Ross Youngs caused me to go back and look at the Giants of that era more carefully. I got a newly-enhanced respect for John McGraw, whose eye for talent was incredible.

The Giants won the pennant in 1917, but that team was old and needed to be reconstructed. Here are the notable players McGraw brought up from 1918-28:

1918: Ross Youngs
1919: Frankie Frisch, Highpockets Kelly* (he had a cup of coffee before this)
1922: Travis Jackson**
1923: Hack Wilson, Bill Terry
1924: Freddie Lindstrom***
1925: Freddie Fitzsimmons (35 pitcher WAR)
1926: Mel Ott
1928: Carl Hubbell

*Kelly, the weakest player in the bunch, won an MVP award.

**Travis Jackson had 36.1 WAR at SS through age 27, and in 7 of those 8 years his WAR ranged from 4.0 to 5.7. He was on pace to be the best SS between Wagner and Appling.

***Lindstrom had 20.9 WAR at 3B through his age 24 season, including 2 at 6.4, and a second place MVP finish. To give some perspective, Pie Traynor, usually cited as the best 3B of that era, had 17.7 WAR through age 24 and his career best season was 4.2. Lindstrom was on pace to be the best 3B between Baker and Mathews.

Injuries limited Jackson and Lindstrom severely after their fine starts and neither had the career he "should" have had. Still, that's an astonishing array of talent McGraw (or his scouts) found and developed.
   1055. Rennie's Tenet Posted: January 14, 2019 at 05:06 AM (#5805205)
Tracker Tracker: last year's tracker captured 174 ballots by January 8, and held 191 by January 15. This year's sits at just 170 today. Has the Tracker reached an inflection point? Has it gone the way of The Gizmo?
   1056. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 14, 2019 at 09:18 AM (#5805217)
The Giants won the pennant in 1917, but that team was old and needed to be reconstructed. Here are the notable players McGraw brought up from 1918-28:

And that could have included Edd Roush. Though in fairness by 1917 the Giants' OF had George Burns, Benny Kauff, and Youngs on the way up.
   1057. Mefisto Posted: January 14, 2019 at 10:02 AM (#5805229)
Yeah, it didn't seem fair to count Roush because he got traded to Cin so quickly.

I will say that McGraw's record on trades seems on first glance to be weaker than his ability to spot talent. Someone should check his record on trades more systematically to see how he did.
   1058. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 14, 2019 at 10:43 AM (#5805250)
Tracker Tracker: last year's tracker captured 174 ballots by January 8, and held 191 by January 15. This year's sits at just 170 today. Has the Tracker reached an inflection point? Has it gone the way of The Gizmo?

HOF voters are submitting their columns later because they're less emotional about the candidates. Unfortunately, this will depress attendance at Cooperstown and lead to the institution's slow but inexorable demise. It's just a theory, but good luck disproving it.
   1059. Mefisto Posted: January 14, 2019 at 11:26 AM (#5805277)
As I think about it, the Roush trade was a bigger mistake than I realized. Not only did McGraw get virtually nothing back for him (2 years of average play by Buck Herzog), but there were ripple effects of not having him when Youngs died.

In fact, had the Giants kept Roush, and had they not had the incredible bad luck of having Youngs die and Jackson and Lindstrom suffer serious injury, I think those McGraw teams would have been considered at least equal to the Yankees of that era. Here's a plausible lineup, with guesstimates for the missing performances, for the period 1921-32 (when McGraw retired):

C Frank Snyder 1921-4 7.5 WAR; Shanty Hogan 1928-32 11.8 WAR
1B Kelly 1921-6 21.9 WAR; Terry 1927-32 35 WAR
2B Frisch 1921-32 60.4 WAR
3B Lindstrom 1925-32 40 WAR guesstimate (23.1 actual; had to guess his age 25-27 seasons)
SS Jackson 1923-32 42.5 WAR guesstimate (38.2 actual; only had to guess 1 season)
OF Youngs 1918-32 50-55 WAR guesstimate (30.3 actual; had to guess ages 28-34)
OF Roush 1917-25 36.2 WAR; Wilson 1926-32 34.4 WAR
OF Irish Meusel 1921-6 15.2 WAR; Ott 1928-32 31.2 WAR

Note that I assumed McGraw wouldn't have traded for Hornsby (at least partly a consequence of Youngs' death) and might not have traded Wilson (ditto). That makes this kind of an idealist exercise, but it does show the talent McGraw had to work with in his final decade+.

   1060. Ithaca2323 Posted: January 14, 2019 at 12:48 PM (#5805348)
HOF voters are submitting their columns later because they're less emotional about the candidates. Unfortunately, this will depress attendance at Cooperstown and lead to the institution's slow but inexorable demise. It's just a theory, but good luck disproving it.


I don't think this is true at all. I think attendance this year will be very strong. Rivera, as a career Yankee and Core 4 member, will draw a lot of fans, and Halladay's likely to have supporters travel from Toronto and Philly, as a measure of respect. Edgar's fan base is across the country, but he's got a *really* strong connection to those fans, and a bit of the long-suffering angle. I think they'll travel decently well.

Next year of course, will be a massive thing, since it's Derek Jeter year.

Mike Mussina will be in one of those two years, not that he'll add much. Some Baltimore fans, sure. But there are plenty who don't like him for leaving. And he's just not a guy who really resonates with people.

2021 is a pretty terrible ballot, but 2022 brings the likely induction of Ortiz. And who knows where the voting bloc will be with PEDs? Maybe BB/RC will sneak over the line one of these years, or the voters will go for ARod? Any of those guys could bring surges
   1061. bachslunch Posted: January 14, 2019 at 12:56 PM (#5805358)
Maybe BB/RC will sneak over the line one of these years


Hope so. They might sneak over the line in their last eligible season. There may be some voters who want to punish them but put them in their last chance up. And some of the new voters may be more willing to vote for them.

Or maybe the entrenched thinking of "no PEDs" will win out with just enough voters. I'm sure that will make Joe Freaking Morgan and company ecstatic. We shall see.
   1062. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 14, 2019 at 01:03 PM (#5805362)
I don't think this is true at all. I think attendance this year will be very strong. Rivera, as a career Yankee and Core 4 member, will draw a lot of fans, and Halladay's likely to have supporters travel from Toronto and Philly, as a measure of respect. Edgar's fan base is across the country, but he's got a *really* strong connection to those fans, and a bit of the long-suffering angle. I think they'll travel decently well.

Sorry. That was my attempt to parody the Jayson Stark column linked here about the dearth of "emotion" leading to fewer FA signings.
   1063. catomi01 Posted: January 14, 2019 at 01:04 PM (#5805364)
Any of those guys could bring surges


or riots.
   1064. Master of the Horse Posted: January 14, 2019 at 03:08 PM (#5805410)
1055--Aren't there fewer total voters than last year?
   1065. Howie Menckel Posted: January 14, 2019 at 04:48 PM (#5805470)
That was my attempt to parody the Jayson Stark column linked here about the dearth of "emotion" leading to fewer FA signings.

yes, I had seen what you did there
   1066. The Duke Posted: January 14, 2019 at 08:46 PM (#5805515)
I love the tracker but I think people publishing their votes leads to group-think. Jay Jaffe said he wasn’t going to be the “guy” that didn’t vote for Rivera. I suspect a lot of people have started to think this way. Oh, it’s cool to vote for Larry Walker now, so I guess i will.

With this big of sample we should already know the answer on Mussina but apparently not. I like that it’s still a mystery. I hope they allow members to keep their vote private if they do choose
   1067. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 14, 2019 at 09:05 PM (#5805521)
[1054] That’s a five year run of bad Hall of Fame selections! (Bad HoF selections are still good players, of course)
   1068. Rennie's Tenet Posted: January 14, 2019 at 10:33 PM (#5805537)
#1066 (apparently Duke of Normandy) The Tracker seems to be projecting 412 total ballots, 10 fewer than last year.
   1069. John Northey Posted: January 15, 2019 at 12:09 AM (#5805551)
I'm happy as long as Halladay gets in. I am mixed on the chance Rivera is the first 100% guy - I figure some old coot will not vote for him, but he is clearly the best closer ever by any measure so even those who dislike closers in the HOF have to feel the need to vote for him. Ah well at least if he does then it won't be Jeter who is first. IMO I'd like someone to not vote for those 2 just so the first 100% guy could be Ichiro - what is there not to like about him?
   1070. Howie Menckel Posted: January 15, 2019 at 12:17 AM (#5805553)
a 107 MLB OPS+ that leaves him tied for 814th career with luminaries such as Sid Bream, Yonder Alonso, Jeff Conine, Carl Everett, Mel Hall, Eric Karros, Candy Maldonado, Dan Uggla, and Frank Thomas The Lesser?

yes, longevity, defense, and baserunning propel him above the entire 107 crowd (even Bid McPhee?).

but still.
   1071. Sweatpants Posted: January 15, 2019 at 12:40 AM (#5805555)
*Kelly, the weakest player in the bunch, won an MVP award.
Am I missing something? I don't think he did, unless there was some variant of the award given out that I don't know about.
Note that I assumed McGraw wouldn't have traded for Hornsby (at least partly a consequence of Youngs' death) and might not have traded Wilson (ditto).
I thought McGraw trading for Hornsby was largely the result of a feud between him and Frisch.
   1072. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:39 AM (#5805559)
With this big of sample we should already know the answer on Mussina but apparently not. I like that it’s still a mystery.


Funny, Fangraphs had an article today on Mussina's chances this year. Here's the conclusion:

All of this is to say: there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about Mussina’s chances of being elected this year. It’s going to be very close, but he’s got a lot of things working in his favor. There are several paths he can take to get the additional votes he needs. It’s going to be interesting to see where he ends up and how many of these trends hold as he marches towards the finish line.


Well worth a read
   1073. Mefisto Posted: January 15, 2019 at 08:52 AM (#5805577)
Am I missing something? I don't think he did, unless there was some variant of the award given out that I don't know about.


Looks like my bad. I misread his BBREF player page. He had a 3d place finish and a 6th place finish in MVP voting.

I thought McGraw trading for Hornsby was largely the result of a feud between him and Frisch.


True, but it's also the case the Youngs' death left the Giants with a real hole offensively. I think McGraw might not have made the deal if that weren't the case.
   1074. Mefisto Posted: January 15, 2019 at 10:31 AM (#5805621)
Just to elaborate a bit on the Frisch trade, here's the sequence:

Youngs became sick at the end of 1924. After playing only a little in 1925, he came back to get 400+ PAs in 1926, albeit at a much reduced level of performance. Then, apparently somewhat unexpectedly, he died in October 1926. McGraw made the Frisch trade about 6 weeks later, in December 1926.
   1075. alilisd Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:20 PM (#5805797)
I love the tracker but I think people publishing their votes leads to group-think. Jay Jaffe said he wasn’t going to be the “guy” that didn’t vote for Rivera. I suspect a lot of people have started to think this way. Oh, it’s cool to vote for Larry Walker now, so I guess i will.


I think this has been true for quite some time, and for quite some time before the tracker, or the gizmo, ever came into existence. It may have an effect, but there have been plenty of voters/writers who hopped on board for a player who had built momentum and began to approach an election level percentage. I would be surprised if it didn't happen that a voter began to vote for a candidate after not having done so because they looked around and realized 60 or 70% of their colleagues were voting for the candidate. Safety in numbers, that many people can't be wrong, etc.
   1076. Master of the Horse Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:50 PM (#5805806)
   1077. SoSH U at work Posted: January 15, 2019 at 04:57 PM (#5805812)
It may have an effect, but there have been plenty of voters/writers who hopped on board for a player who had built momentum and began to approach an election level percentage.


Momemntum has been a huge factor in slow-building Hall candidacies forever. A large percentage of the electorate just votes in the obvious guys, then takes its cue from other voters as a voter begins to gain support. I suppose the Tracker may accelerate the process, but it's a longstanding phenomenon.
   1078. alilisd Posted: January 15, 2019 at 05:22 PM (#5805814)
Really enjoying this discussion of Youngs, among other players/topics. Thanks especially to Mefisto for pointing out his untimely death as it allowed me to reevaluate him (not sure if I'd read about him before and forgotten, or just not looked closely enough, but either way I had just been lumping him in as a poor Frisch pick, which he's clearly not). Apologies to Brianbrianson for the snark about the 162/154 suggestion, I should have said that sort of adjustment is too fractional for my taste, and I tend not to like to compare too far across eras when discussing HOF players. So Youngs playing in a 154 game season doesn't impact, for me, because the players I'm comparing him to also played in a 154 game season. Really glad you made the suggestion though because it led to EricJ posting about his methodology for adjusting for schedule length, which was very interesting!

I'm intrigued by Mefisto's comments about Youngs' electability with a more normal, healthy career. It is an interesting though exercise.

BUT, three factors make it likely that he'd have been elected with that career anyway. First, his last real season was 1924. That means he'd have played another 7 years or so during the peak of the offensive explosion of the late '20s. His counting stats would have looked very good indeed, and that would have mattered to all but the most recent HOF voters.


This is definitely something I've noticed in other players, the aforementioned Harry Hooper being one, benefiting from the live ball, or seeming to improve during the live ball era over their dead ball level. Youngs was definitely a very good hitter from a ratio/OPS+ perspective, but earlier voters would have been looking more at BA, and perhaps certain counting stats. I'd love to hear from anyone who may have done research in this area, if they've been able to identify any sort of focus/criteria early HOF voters used. In looking at Park Factors on B-R his home park stayed fairly neutral, or even pitcher friendly, throughout the time period we're discussing; this perhaps might have limited his offensive numbers in the areas those voters might have considered. Also, the offensive explosion had already begun in 1920, and was fully underway in 1921, so we have a look at what Youngs was doing during that time. He was doing well with hits and average, but was not showing the adaptation to increased HR power. If he only maintained his level going forward, he might not have distinguished himself from the pack, but if he had been able to somehow capitalize on it, particularly increased HR power, I think this would have pushed him forward.

Second, his career would have ended by roughly 1935, by which time he probably would have had another WC ring (the Giants won it in 1933), giving him 5 WS appearances and 3 WC. Then he would have come up for election sometime around 1940 and would very likely have been elected pretty easily (his comps through age 27 include Fred Clarke, Speaker, Flick, Burkett, Manush, and Heilman).


Now this is really interesting. Early HOF voting was highly unorganized. For example, there was no five year waiting period, Ruth retired in 1935 and was inducted in 1936. Youngs was on those early ballots, B-R has him receiving votes beginning in 1936, but the question is what his support would have been like with a more normal career. And that is fun to speculate on. Would he have had that 5th WS and 3rd WC? Would he have stayed with the Giants, IOW? Because if he had, it seems pretty likely he wouldn't have been playing RF given that Ott was solidly established by 1929. Perhaps Youngs slides over to LF, but perhaps he's moved in a trade.

As to his being elected pretty easily, that's not the way voting was going then. In 1940 and 1941 there weren't even elections held. In 1942 the writers elected Hornsby, and that's it. In 1943 and 1944 there were again no elections. The Old Timer's Committee was actively inducting 19th Century players during this time, but the writers were not doing much at all. Starting up again in 1945 they still didn't elect anyone until 1947 (Hubbell, Grove, Frisch, and Cochrane), in 1948 Traynor and Pennock, Gehringer in a run-off in 1949, then no one in 1950, Ott and Foxx in 1951, and then Waner and Heilmann in 1952. Those early ballots, and early voting, were crazy! The ballots were packed with players because the election process had only begun in 1936, and interrupted by WW II in the 40's.

When you look at how hard it was for Foxx (on ballot in 1936, but then not again until 1946), Waner (nominating vote in 1946, on ballot in 1948), and Heilmann (on ballot in 1937) to get elected, I think it's clear Youngs would not have been elected easily, no one was really being elected easily during that time. But he might very well have been elected by the writers at some point in the 50's, or even earlier by the VC.
   1079. alilisd Posted: January 15, 2019 at 05:25 PM (#5805816)
Momemntum has been a huge factor in slow-building Hall candidacies forever. A large percentage of the electorate just votes in the obvious guys, then takes its cue from other voters as a voter begins to gain support. I suppose the Tracker may accelerate the process, but it's a longstanding phenomenon.


Concur
   1080. BrianBrianson Posted: January 15, 2019 at 06:00 PM (#5805824)
I mean - yeah, it was snarky, but I wasn't trying to be technical. The real point was that criticising a guy for only having two 4.0 WAR seasons when he also had two 3.8s and a 3.9 was being way too technical, and relying far too much on bright lines. Doing by season length was just the easiest way to express the thought. But probably, it would be better to do it by talking about the uncertainty in WAR (like, did he really have 3.3 +- 0.5 seasons of four or more WAR?), or any other framework you could use to talk about the issue...
   1081. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 15, 2019 at 06:34 PM (#5805836)
Ichiro - what is there not to like about him


Not much power for a corner outfielder.
   1082. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 15, 2019 at 06:53 PM (#5805841)
I love the tracker but I think people publishing their votes leads to group-think. Jay Jaffe said he wasn’t going to be the “guy” that didn’t vote for Rivera. I suspect a lot of people have started to think this way. Oh, it’s cool to vote for Larry Walker now, so I guess i will.

I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing. Say you're a writer who's kept off a Walker or Mussina because he didn't "feel like a HOFer." If you start to realize that a good number of your peers think otherwise, it may compel you to take a closer look.
   1083. Mefisto Posted: January 15, 2019 at 07:35 PM (#5805846)
@1078: Good points throughout. A couple of thoughts in response.

I think Youngs would have stayed with the Giants because McGraw tended to be loyal to his veterans. Still, you never know if he might have been moved for, say, a pitcher. I'm sure he'd have moved to left to accommodate Ott. McGraw may have been loyal but he was no fool.

I doubt he would have increased his power. He seems to have been a line drive hitter, consistent with his comps. At a guess, if he'd played 9 more seasons, to age 36, his BA would have dropped a bit from .332 but probably stayed above .320, maybe .325 considering the era. His OBP was .407 when he got sick, and he'd likely have ended up around .400. Add to that maybe 450 doubles and 130 triples, and I think voters of that time would have been pretty impressed. That leads me to your other good point....

I didn't realize just how selective the writers were being in that era. I suspect it was a function of crowded ballots. Regardless, it's likely Youngs wouldn't have been elected (if at all) until the 1950s.
   1084. Booey Posted: January 15, 2019 at 07:58 PM (#5805851)
#1082 - It's not a bad thing with regards to Walker or Mussina specifically (or Blyleven and Raines), but it was bad with Morris and Rice and it's going to be bad when they inevitably start doing it with Vizquel.
   1085. alilisd Posted: January 15, 2019 at 08:06 PM (#5805852)
The real point was that criticising a guy for only having two 4.0 WAR seasons when he also had two 3.8s and a 3.9 was being way too technical, and relying far too much on bright lines.


Ah, I gothcha. I should have been more clear about what I was saying with that. I very much like the way B-R lays out it's "ranking" of a season by WAR, and use that myself in evaluating peak. They call 8+ as an MVP like season, 5+ an All Star like season, 2+ is a starter. I equate that 5+ value with a HOF caliber season, although they list it as an All Star season. So I should have said Youngs only had 2 HOF caliber seasons, and the rest of them were only very good, rather than trying to make a fine line of less than 4 WAR seasons. And I really wasn't trying to criticize him so much as point out he wasn't playing like a HOF so much as a HOVG player. Those were all very good seasons, no doubt, just not great/HOF like seasons, IMO. Cheers!
   1086. alilisd Posted: January 15, 2019 at 08:19 PM (#5805855)
#1082 - It's not a bad thing with regards to Walker or Mussina specifically (or Blyleven and Raines), but it was bad with Morris and Rice and it's going to be bad when they inevitably start doing it with Vizquel.


The good with the bad, eh? Yeah, I still get chapped about Morris. Rice is not so bad for me, he's got the black ink, the MVP cred, superficially he looks like a HOF; if you look closer, or through a more analytical lens, his warts are visible, but I'm kind of meh on him.

Vizquel will be interesting from this perspective. He's a classic candidate for it with many folks talking about him as the best shortstop they've ever seen, citing his counting stats on offense. But it will be interesting to see how much older voters falling off the rolls impacts him, how much newer voters coming on will look at his defense as not nearly as good as reported, and his offense clearly lacking. It does seem with his strong debut he's a lock to go in over time, but it will be interesting to watch.
   1087. John DiFool2 Posted: January 15, 2019 at 10:52 PM (#5805892)
MLB.com voters have revealed their votes:

[6 voters]

Barry Bonds -- 6 votes
Roger Clemens -- 6
Roy Halladay -- 6
Edgar Martinez -- 6
Mike Mussina -- 6
Mariano Rivera -- 6
Curt Schilling -- 5
Larry Walker -- 5
Fred McGriff -- 2
Manny Ramirez -- 2
Scott Rolen -- 2
Omar Vizquel -- 2
Billy Wagner -- 2
Andruw Jones -- 1
Jeff Kent -- 1
Gary Sheffield -- 1
Michael Young -- 1


Good news for most of the top candidates.
   1088. Ithaca2323 Posted: January 16, 2019 at 09:09 AM (#5805922)
It's not a bad thing with regards to Walker or Mussina specifically (or Blyleven and Raines), but it was bad with Morris and Rice and it's going to be bad when they inevitably start doing it with Vizquel.


Rice was elected in 2009. The tracker lists just 60 voters from that year. I highly doubt it played a strong role in his election. As for Morris, while it's true he was a victim of the '13 and '14 classes and backlog, it's also true that those classes introduced a deep crop of pitchers all clearly better than Morris, and the growing sabermetric arm was always going to provide pushback. I'm not sure he'd have gotten in via the BBWAA, and honestly, he was always a shoo-in with the vets committee types.
   1089. Don August(us) Cesar Geronimo Berroa Posted: January 16, 2019 at 10:00 AM (#5805933)
Ichiro - what is there not to like about him


Not much power for a corner outfielder.


Late bloomer. Didn't even make it to the majors until he was 27.
   1090. soc40 Posted: January 16, 2019 at 11:04 AM (#5805959)
Ichiro - what is there not to like about him


Not much power for a corner outfielder.



Late bloomer. Didn't even make it to the majors until he was 27.


Cheap infield hits. Was running down the line while still in the batters box :)

   1091. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 16, 2019 at 11:12 AM (#5805963)
Not much power for a corner outfielder.
Ahem. Chose not to use his abundant power.
   1092. bachslunch Posted: January 16, 2019 at 11:29 AM (#5805968)
The tracker estimates that most of the returning candidates should be able to stay on the ballot for next year as of now. The only one in question currently seems to be Andruw, who is estimated to need 6 more votes to continue.

Of the newbies, if you're not Mo, Halladay, or Helton, you're in varying degrees of trouble, looks like. The tracker estimates these folks need to gain the following number of additional votes to stay on:

Pettitte: 9
M. Young: 18
Berkman, Oswalt, Tejada: 19

None of the other new folks have gotten a vote.

Pettitte might do a little better with anonymous ballots, like some other NYY folks in the past, maybe enough to sneak over the line. Not so sure about the rest, which would be a shame for folks like Berkman, Oswalt, and Tejada. Folks of this type have hung around on ballots in past, if memory serves, but they might not.
   1093. homerwannabee Posted: January 16, 2019 at 11:55 AM (#5805974)
I am of the mindset that Mo won't lose more than 6 votes at max. So if he loses 6 votes he's 4th all time in vote percentage. If he loses 5 votes he still remains 4th all time. If he loses 4 votes, he's 2nd all time. If he loses 3 votes he remains 2nd, and if he loses 2 or fewer votes he'll have the highest percentage all time.
   1094. alilisd Posted: January 16, 2019 at 12:20 PM (#5805989)
Ichiro - what is there not to like about him


Not much power for a corner outfielder.

Late bloomer. Didn't even make it to the majors until he was 27.


Hung on far too long chasing 3,000 hits!
   1095. alilisd Posted: January 16, 2019 at 12:31 PM (#5805997)
The tracker estimates that most of the returning candidates should be able to stay on the ballot for next year as of now. The only one in question currently seems to be Andruw, who is estimated to need 6 more votes to continue.


CF from 1990-2018, at least 1,000 games played in CF:

HR A. Jones 3rd, J. Edmonds 4th, K. Lofton 19th

OPS+ A. Jones 8th, J. Edmonds 3rd, K. Lofton 11th

Rfield A. Jones 1st, J. Edmonds 9th, K. Lofton 2nd

WAA A. Jones 3rd, J. Edmonds 4th, K. Lofton 2nd

One and done on the ballot? Edmonds and Lofton. Two and done? Possibly Jones. Best of luck Carlos Beltran!
   1096. Booey Posted: January 16, 2019 at 12:57 PM (#5806013)
One and done on the ballot? Edmonds and Lofton. Two and done? Possibly Jones. Best of luck Carlos Beltran!


I actually think the writers will elect Beltran eventually. His career numbers/counting stats just look more HOFey than those other guys. Plus he'll be debuting on much less crowded ballots. I think at worst he'll be this generations Andre Dawson, but with a pretty good chance of getting elected even sooner.
   1097. Booey Posted: January 16, 2019 at 01:04 PM (#5806018)
Beltran's resume just checks off too many boxes to not get elected eventually, IMO.

ROY
9 time All Star
3 Gold gloves
435 HR
1587 rbi
1582 runs scored
2725 hits
312 SB (with only 49 CS)
.307/.412/.609 career postseason line

He's got the counting stats the traditional voters like, plus the WAR/WAA that the SABR voters like. Lofton/Edmonds/Jones each have SOME similar stuff on their resume's, but none of them have all of that.
   1098. Srul Itza Posted: January 16, 2019 at 02:55 PM (#5806077)
I think at worst he'll be this generations Andre Dawson


Fitting, since their similarity scores are 928, top on each other's list
   1099. Hysterical & Useless Posted: January 16, 2019 at 03:10 PM (#5806087)
Ahem. Chose not to use his abundant power.


Not much baseball smarts, eh?
   1100. Hysterical & Useless Posted: January 16, 2019 at 04:04 PM (#5806111)
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