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— A Look at Baseball's All-Time Best

Monday, August 01, 2005

1957 Ballot

Prominent newbies: Joe DiMaggio, Lou Boudreau, Bobby Doerr, Charlie Keller, Buck O’Neill and Max Manning.

Top-ten returnees: John Beckwith, Billy Herman, Stan Hack, Joe MedwickRed Ruffing, Hughie Jennings, Earl Averill and Wes Ferrell.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 01, 2005 at 01:59 PM | 111 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 01, 2005 at 02:18 PM (#1514851)
hot topics
   2. ronw Posted: August 01, 2005 at 02:42 PM (#1514888)
1957 Ballot – I’m trying to get my system down before the 1958 election. Right now, I use a little of WS, WARP, RCAA, OPS+, and traditional stats, as well as reputation. Less emphasis on WS and WARP than in the past because I don’t think that they have gotten the fielding down.

1. Joe DiMaggio No matter what the system, here’s where he lands.

2. John Beckwith Definitely deserving.

3. Dick Redding I’m interested to see if he gets overlooked in the new HOF vote.

4. Pete Browning The hitting difference between him and all other available outfielders more than makes up for the AA discount and poor fielding.

5. Cupid Childs Seems far ahead of all eligible 2B, including Gordon.

6. George Sisler OK, he didn’t put up the late career numbers that other players playing in his parks theoretically would have. As yest has pointed out, he still put up good overall numbers.

7. John McGraw Mugsy’s RCAA domination of the rough-and-tumble 1890’s, combined with his head-and-shoulders status above all other 3B tells me we missed him. I should have listened to KJOK earlier. I’m not sure why the huge support for Jennings has not been applied to McGraw.

8. Hugh Jennings Packed more into his five years than many SS’s do in a career.

9. Dobie Moore I think these two should be above newly eligible Appling.

10. Lou Boudreau Similar to Moore, but with a war discount.

11. Stan Hack I’ll keep him here for now, but know that I am seriously looking at Bill Joyce and Denny Lyons again.

12. Roger Bresnahan Best available catcher, by a good margin.

13. Wes Ferrell Fine pitcher peak.

14. Jose Mendez I think that I can’t ignore Mendez, who was probably the pitcher that Ferrell was, and may have been as good a hitter.

15. Billy Herman The 2B studies show he is near the top of the 2B class.


Earl Averill – Pales in comparison to JoeD, but I think he is above short-career Keller.

Joe Medwick – Surprisingly behind Bob Johnson (who is just off the ballot).

Red Ruffing – No really outstanding seasons, but a lot of good.

Bobby Doerr – Stuck with Gordon, Lazzeri, Doyle in the 2B glut.

Charlie Keller – Fine peak, but behind Medwick, Bob Johnson, Charley Jones in my LF rankings.

Buck O’Neill – No source lists him among the all-time greats. Was he a Mickey Vernon type of player?

Max Manning – ditto for Max.
   3. karlmagnus Posted: August 01, 2005 at 02:58 PM (#1514918)
Joe D top, but by less than you might think. Doerr MUCH better than Boudreau; 15% more career and he missed a year for the war, whereas Boudreau didn’t. Doerr 35% more career than Gordon. Keller’s a hitting Dizzy Dean; all peak but very short career (missed 1 ½ years for war, but even with them would be under 1400 hits); he and Moses off bottom of consideration set. O’Neil I would have expected to be a strong candidate, but it seems not.

1. (N/A) Joe DiMaggio Shortish career, played for a very strong team, so only modestly above Beckley (so where’s the Simon & Garfunkel song about Beckley, eh?) 2214 hits TB+BB/PA .630, TB+BB/Outs 1.016., well below Foxx, Gehrig and Greenberg, for example. Hugely overrated, but still clearly HOMable.

2. (N/A-9-9-10-7-7-5-5-4-3-5-6-5-3-4-3-4-4-3-2-2-1-1-2-6-4-4-2-1-1-1-3-1-2-2-1-1-2-2-1-1-2-2-3-1-1-1-1) Jake Beckley. Paul Waner is a very close comp (it was 37 years till we found one) and it thus makes no sense to have Waner far above Beckley. Adjust his 2930 hits to full seasons and he's up there with Nap, above Babe, over 3200 hits, and OPS+ of 125 better than Van Haltren and slightly short of Wheat’s 129. Isolated power .127 vs “slugger” Wheat .135, in a less power-centered era. Marginally ahead of Welch, as we have seen more 307-win pitchers (now 10 others among currently HOM-eligible) than 2930-hit hitters (now 8 others). TB+BB/PA .455, TB+BB/Outs .707. Played for un-famous teams. Better than Keeler, almost as good as Crawford. More than a borderline HOMer, somewhere in the reaches well above the border but below the immortals.

3. (15-14-11-12-10-9-6-8-7-7-6-7-6-3-3-3-2-3-2-2-3-2-4-5-4-2-3-2-3-3-2-3-3-2-2-3-7-5-5-3-2-2-2-4-2-3-3-2-2-4-3-2-2-3-3-4-2-3-2-2) Mickey Welch. 307-210 comes to impress me more and more, particularly as we get more and more of the 1920s and 1930s pitcher glut – 7 more wins than Lefty Grove! 1885 looks like a pretty good peak too; 44-11 with a 1.67 ERA is pretty impressive, compared for example to Clarkson’s 49-19 at 2.73 in 1889. With 4802 IP, OK at an ERA+of 113 (but he never heard of ERA) he was far better than most of the 00s and 20s pitchers under consideration, none of whom (other than Young, Matty and Alex) got near 300 wins, and many of whom had ERA+s little better than Welch.

4. (N/A-6-4-3-3-3-5-3-4-4-3-3-5-5-3-4-4-5-6-4-4-3-3) George Sisler. 2812 hits, OPS+ 124 puts him just below Beckley and Welch. TB+BB/PA .482, TB+BB/Outs .748. Better singles hitter than Ichiro!, his record having been set in a 154 game season. And he had power too.

5. (N/A-10-8-7-6-4-3-3-5-9-7-8-6-4-4-4-6-4-5-6-5-4-6-7-6-5-5-6-7-5-5-4-4) Eddie Cicotte. Only 208-149 and an ERA+ of 123, but 3223 IP, more than Waddell and should get about 25% of the bonus for the 300-win career he should have had (he was, after all, a knuckleballer, who tend to peak late.) Much better than the 20s glut – only loses to Welch on longevity. Successfully cursed Red Sox for over 8 decades!

6. (N/A-15-N/A-5-4-4-6-10-8-9-7-5-5-5-7-5-6-7-6-6-7-8-7-6-6-7-8-6-6-5-5) Pete Browning. Recalculating, to adjust ’82 as well as ’83-’92, he had 2,177 “normalized” hits, with no AA discount. However, TB+BB/PA .511, TB+BB/Outs .855. the same as Tiernan, not quite as good as Thompson, but he got no significant boost from the 1893-94 run explosion. Career OPS+162 vs. 146 Thompson and 138 Tiernan, but you have to discount a bit for AA

7. (N/A-7) Addie Joss. I’m convinced I missed him earlier. 2327 IP at an ERA+ of 141. 160-97 by age 30. If you assume the rest of his career would have been 1800 IP, 120-90 with an ERA+ of 110 (somewhat conservative, assuming you boost his last sick season, though pitchers didn’t last as long as they did later) then 50% credit would put him at 3227IP, 220-142, with ERA+ of 130, at #3 on this list. 25% credit puts him at 2777 IP, 190-120, with ERA+ of 136, still good for just above Rixey.

8. (N/A-12-10-9-10-9-8-7-7-8-9-7-7-6-8) Eppa Rixey, 266-251 and ERA+ of 115. Huge 4,494 IP. Better than Lyons with WW1 credit.

9. (N/A-10-9-8-11-N/A-15-15-14-10-10-11-12-10-12-11-9-8-9-10-10-9-8-9-10-9-8-7-9) Charley Jones. Short career – only 1,780 normalized hits, even when adjusted to nominal 130-game-played season (but that’s more than Pike, with much less of an adjustment, and Jones too missed two prime seasons.) But OPS+ 149, TB+BB/PA .473, TB+BB/Outs .722, so above Pike and non-CF 90s OF.

10. (N/A) Bobby Doerr. 2042 hits but missed a year for the war. OPS+ only 115, but they’re using a funny corrector for Fenway, as his raw stats are much better than Boudreau, whose OPS+ is 120. 2042 hits (plus 1 wartime season) TB+BB/PA .508, TB+BB/Outs .754.
   4. karlmagnus Posted: August 01, 2005 at 02:59 PM (#1514923)
11. (N/A-10-9-8-10) Ernie Lombardi 2137 hits, normalized to a 130 game season, and an OPS+ of 125 makes him a little better than Schang, even if some of it was during the war years. TB+BB/PA .492, TB+BB/Outs .719., the ratio between the two very low because of strikeouts, I assume. Plus a great nickname!

12. (N/A-9-8-8-9-10-8-10-9-8-7-8-11-11-10-10-10-11-11-10-9-11) Wally Schang. When you normalize his career to 130 game seasons for the first 18 years, as I do for catchers, he gets to 1941 hits, more than Groh at an OPS+ of 117, very similar. Furthermore, TB+BB/PA=.455, TB+BB/Outs=.728, also significantly better than Groh, over very close to the same period. And he was a catcher, more difficult than 3B. Not as good as Hartnett, though.

13. (N/A-12-10-12-10-11-10-7-7-8-9-7-9-13-11-10-11-12-12-11-11-11-12-12-11-11-12) Sam Leever. Pity he wasn’t able to start at the normal time; 2 more years would have made him a NB. Only 2660 innings, but was blocked till 27 by the one-league 1890s and having a steady job as a schoolteacher. Believe he needs to be looked at seriously by others, and included in pitcher analysis. Mild plus for high level of moral probity.

14. (N/A-14-13-15-N/A-15-N/A-14-N/A-10-8-7-6-5-5-7-11-9-10-8-6-6-6-8-6-8-8-7-11-12-13-13-12-12-12-13-14-13-13-13) Clark Griffith He’s another Amos Rusie, but not quite as good. 3385 IP, 237 wins and an ERA+ of 121 not outstanding, but his winning percentage is good and his 1898 peak is nice. Decided he’s not quite as good as Rixey or Leever, after seeing Kelly’s figures.

15. (N/A-13-14-14-13-13-13-14-15-14-14-14) John Beckwith. A bit more confident, now I’ve seen we’re not automatically enshrining Lundy/Foster/Johnson. Also, Chris Cobb’s equivalents are looking more solid to me. Definitely better than Suttles, but had a short career.


16. (N/A-7-13-11-13-14-14-14-N/A-15-15-15-N/A-14-15-15-15-N/A) Hack Wilson TB+BB/PA = .588, TB+BB/Outs = .954, OPS+ 144 back up above Lazzeri and Childs. (he does appear to have known about BB, unlike some others.) Very short career, but quality too good to ignore. OPS+ slightly below Jones, so here he goes.

17. (N/A-8-7-8-14-13-14-13-9-9-10-11-9-11-10-13-13-15-N/A-15-N/A) Cupid Childs. OPS+119, almost the same as the 90s trio, and TB+BB/PA .470, TB+BB/Outs .797 highly competitive with them. Main negative is only 1720 hits, or about 1780 even if you normalize him to a 130 games played season. Nevertheless, he was a 2B. Joss stopped him getting back on the ballot now, he’ll return shortly.

18. (N/A-11-14-N/A) Rube Waddell Given Joss’s new elevation, he’d dropped a bit too far at 32.

19. (N/A-14-14-N/A) Chuck Klein. Shortish career but very good one. Similar player to Beckwith, beats Hack on career length, but Hack was better. TB+BB/PA .575, TB+BB/Outs .909, but only 2076 hits. OPS+137.

20. Indian Bob Johnson. Very similar career to Klein but infinitesimally less good. TB+BB/PA .569, TB+BB/Outs .890., only 2051 hits.

21. (N/A-15) Alejandro Oms. New MLE OPS+ of 125 moves him down a bit. Shorter career than Beckley, and not quite as valuable, but he was a darn good player nonetheless.

22. Red Ruffing. Somewhat above average pitcher, with excellent counting stats because he happened to pitch for the Evil Empire (he was lousy for the Red Sox – typical). War credit would inflate his counting stats even further, but probably to just below 300 wins as he was winding down. ERA+ only 109, but 4333 IP and 273-225.

23. (N/A-11-12-11-11-12-13-14-12-15-15-15-15-N/A) Carl Mays
24.Ben Taylor. Not all that far below Beckley and better than Van Haltren. Put him above Suttles – he’s better, so will be on ballot in weak years.
25. (N/A-12-12-14-N/A) Tony Lazzeri
26. (N/A-11-12-15-14-N/A) Joe Sewell
27. (N/A-14-N/A-15-N/A) Sam Rice
28. (N/A-6-5-9-8-9-8-7-10-11-8-9-7-7-6-6-9-9-8-6-6-6-5-4-8-7-9-12-N/A-14-13-15-N/A) Hugh Duffy
29. (N/A-13-15-N/A-15-15-N/A) Vic Willis
30. (N/A) Burleigh Grimes.
31. (N/A) Heinie Manush
32. (N/A-9-10-10-13-N/A) Mike Tiernan
33. Earl Averill. Fairly well off my ballot, and I think the team are giving him too much minor league credit. In the real world, 2019 hits at an OPS+ of 133 doesn’t get him close to the HOM. Not as good as Tiernan.
34. Wes Ferrell. Not enough career.
35. (N/A) Dick Lundy
36. (N/A) Hughie Jennings OPS+ 117 and he was a shortstop and he had a superb peak, but only 1527 hits. TB+BB/PA .414, TB+BB/Outs .671, so he’s not as good as Childs. Extra bonus for the peak.
37. (N/A-9-12-11-14-13-14-12-11-12-13-11-11-9-9-13-14-12-14-14-N/A) Levi Meyerle. Normalize 1871-77 season by season to 130 games and he gets 1,577 hits, only 15 less than Pike in 1 less season. Better peak, too. TB+BB/PA .482, TB+BB/Outs .751, though this, like McVey and Pike’s figures, includes no “decline” phase. Also, he was a 3B. Why did Meyerle quit? -- unlike Pike, he was nowhere near done in 1877. OPS+164 vs 152 for McVey and 155 for Pike.
38. Biz Mackey. Not quite as good as Schang, very similar to McGuire. Better than Bell, though.
39. (12-15-N/A-11-10-12-10-10-9-8-11-12-10-10-8-8-14-15-13-15-15-N/A) Harry Wright.
40. (N/A-10-9-8-7-6-7-8-5-12-10-10-N/A-10-8-11-11-N/A) Jimmy Ryan
41. (N/A-13-12-13-13-12-14-15-12-13-11-11-N/A-11-9-12-12-N/A) George van Haltren. TB+BB/PA .469, TB+BB/Outs .765, not overwhelming for the 90s.
42. Joe Medwick. Probably a bit better than Joe Judge or Billy Herman, even after WWII discount, but not all that much better. 2471 hits at OPS+ of 134, but a lot of them in the war years. TB+BB/PA .526, TB+BB/Outs .792
43. Cool Papa Bell. Hugely overrated by history. Lou Brock minus, without 3000 hits and Brock would only just make this ballot.
44. Billy Herman. 112 OPS+ not very distinguished, but 2345 hits is an OK length career and he about breaks even on war credit. TB+BB/PA .448, TB+BB/Outs .677, pretty undistinguished for a mainly 1930s player.
45. Kiki Cuyler
46. Deacon McGuire
47. Jack Quinn
48. Tony Mullane
49. Pye Traynor
50. Jim McCormick
51. Dick Redding
52. Joe Judge
53. Edd Roush
54. Spotswood Poles.
55. Larry Doyle
56. Roger Bresnahan.
57. Wayte Hoyt.
58. Joe Gordon.
59. Lou Boudreau. Only 1779 hits, and he played right through the war. OPS+120, but that looks inflated. TB+BB/PA.469, TB+BB/Outs.714. Might be lower than this, shouldn’t be higher.
60. Harry Hooper.
61. Jules Thomas.
62. Wilbur Cooper
63. Bruce Petway.
64. Jack Clements
65. Bill Monroe
66. Jose Mendez
67. Herb Pennock
68. Chief Bender
69. Ed Konetchy
70. Jesse Tannehill
71. Bobby Veach
72. Lave Cross
73. Tommy Leach.
74. Tom York
Hack shortish career and rate stats inflated by the war, off bottom of consideration set.
   5. andrew siegel Posted: August 01, 2005 at 06:24 PM (#1515488)
I think this is the hardest ballot I've yet faced. Boudreau is very difficult to place. Oms is clamoring for a spot. I've been underrating Sewell and Sisler. Keller deserves some scrutiny. And Gordon, Doerr, Hack, and Herman are difficult to sort out.

I've reworked my consideration set and begun to reevaluate players position by position. Perhaps there will be some significant movement next week.

For now, I give you:

(1) Joe D (new)--At least the top spot is easy.

(2) Beckwith (1st)--Has a 17 point OPS+ lead on Boudreau's war-inflated figures and played more games. The evidence that he was a bad enough fielder to give back those advanatges isn't there.

(3) Boudreau (new)-- I could see why career voters have him substantially lower, but he was Joe Cronin with the bat and an A+ defensive SS. The short career and slight war inflation keep him from being an elite player, but he easily makes my prime-heavy PHoM. Without the necessary downward war adjustment, he looks an awful lot like Cal McVey or Elmer Flick or Joe Jackson in value pattern.

(4) Jennings (3rd)-- Guys with seven to ten years as superstars make my HoM easily. Guys who only had five or so worthwhile years largely don't. The one exception is Hughie, who in his time and place was every bit as valuable as Willie Mays, Tris Speaker, or Eddie Collins.

(5) Van Haltren (5th)-- An exception on my peak heavy ballot.

(6) Wes Ferrell (7th)--My first round of pitcher evaluations bump him up a little. In his time and place, a better five-year peak than anyone but Dean and a three-year shoulder to that where he was almost as good.

(7) Earl Averill (6th)-- In same general vicinity with the bat as guys like Heilmann and Goslin who slipped in easily. Another way to say that is that he is Beckwith with less defensive value.

(8) Cupid Childs (10th)--Moves up based on comparisons with Boudreau.

(9) Dobie Moore (11th)-- Him too. Note that he is the only Negro League candidate who I hold back based on my confidence interval. I need more information desperately.

(10) Billy Herman (13th)-- A half step behind Childs.

(11) Eppa Rixey (9th)-- Pitcher reassessments confirm his rank near the top but suggest that there isn't much difference between #1 and #16 hurler. That costs him a few spots.

(12) Hugh Duffy (14th)--Next three OF's are very close. Duffy had no holes in his game, played every day, and was the linchpin of great and over-achieving teams. The fact that WS finds ways to account for these intangibles statistically is one of the system's great virtues.

(13) Alejandro Oms (new)-- This looks about right assuming that Oms was an excellent corner OF and a good CF with a 125 OPS+ and a nice peak, but a slightly shortened career.

(14) Joe Medwick (15th)--More stick, less glove than the last two, but essentially the same value.

(15) Red Ruffing (8th)-- The yo-yo goes down this week. Having a hard time coming to grips with the conflicting evidence.

Joe Sewell falls from 12th to 16th, followed by Sisler, Mackey, Roush, Charley Jones, Gordon, Doerr, and Redding, all of whom I find very ballot worthy. Hack is 24th; I find him very borderline once you apply a war discount.

Charlie Keller is someone who I thought I was going to support before the project, but there are just too many great hitting, short career OF-1B out there. Being one of the best of them gets him in my top 40 but not much higher. (I have Kiner rated higher, but I'm not sure if that is #1 higher or #30 higher or somewhere in between.)
   6. TomH Posted: August 01, 2005 at 06:47 PM (#1515584)
Andrew - could you clarify these two points--?

1. I've been underrating Sewell
2. Joe Sewell falls from 12th to 16th

just checkin' :)
   7. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 01, 2005 at 07:34 PM (#1515754)
Finished my ballot a little faster than I have recently done because of the SABR convention.

I use Win Shares as the base for my ranking system, though I am now using a modified version (any negative values are converted into zeroes) of BRAR, FRAR and PRAR for the NA.

I am integrating the conclusions made by DERA with Win Shares for all pitchers.

I do place (to a certain degree) domination at one's position during the player's era. That doesn't mean that domination-by-default will necessarily help you though (Gil Hodges may have been the best first baseman of his era, but I doubt he'll make my ballot when he becomes eligible).

1) Joe DiMaggio-CF (n/e): As much as I love Beckwith, he wasn't DiMaggio (especially when you add WWII credit to the latter). Not the greatest player of all-time or even his era, IMO, but as inner-circle as you can get. Best major league centerfielder for 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1941, 1942, 1947 ,1948, and 1949.

2) John Beckwith-3B/SS/C (2): I'm wishing...and hoping... :-) Marvelous infielder from the twenties. Appears to have been more "hot corner" guy than shortstop, but that doesn't really hurt him since third base was still mighty tough as a position. Whatever his defense lacked was surely made up (and then some) by a powerful bat. Better than any of the other eligible third basemen, IMO. Probably would have been the best major league third baseman for 1923 and 1929, as well as the best major league shortstop for 1925, if he had been allowed to play.

3) Roger Bresnahan-C/CF (3): Greatest catcher of the Deadball Era not named Santop. The poor man's Buck Ewing (Johnny Kling was the poor man's Charlie Bennett) is still good enough to be here on my ballot. Slightly better than Noisy behind the plate, but the Duke played longer and at other positions. Best major league catcher for 1905, 1906 and 1908. Best major league centerfielder for 1903.

4) Stan Hack-3B (4): Amazingly, Stan wasn't a hacker! :-)Best major league third baseman for 1935, 1937, 1941, 1942, 1945 and 1946. Best NL third baseman for 1936.

5) Alejandro Oms-CF (n/e): Thanks to Chris' work, another gem has been uncovered. He should gather more and more support over the next few "years."

6) Cupid Childs-2B (5): <6>Best second baseman of the '90s.</b> Too short of a career to knock out McPhee for tops for the 19th century, but not that far behind. Considering the average second basemen of his era, he was fairly durable. Best major league second baseman for 1890, (almost in 1891), 1892, 1893, 1894, 1895, 1896 and 1897.

Childs was the best major league second baseman more times in a season than Doyle was the best NL second baseman. IMO, there's no way that the Laughing One goes above the Little Fat Man.

7) Billy Herman-2B (6): Probably better than Childs, but I'll leave him here for now. Best NL second baseman for 1932, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938 and 1943.

8) Hugh Duffy-CF/LF/RF (7): "Only" the third best centerfielder of the '90s, but that position was very strong for that decade. Best major league right fielder for 1890 and 1891. Best major league centerfielder for 1892, 1893 and 1894.

9) George Van Haltren-CF/P (8): Long career of quality play. Best NL leftfielder for 1889 and best AA leftfielder for 1891.

10) Tommy Bridges-P (9): I'm giving him WWII credit, so that pushes him fairly high on my ballot. Still not sure about post-major league credit for him, though. Never the best in his league, but consistently of high quality throughout his career.

11) Jake Beckley-1B (10): Not much peak, but plenty of career. Better than his numbers suggest since first base was tougher during his time than during the ABC boys' era. Best major league first baseman for 1900.

12) Wally Schang-C (11): I've come to the conclusion that the two Erics have a point about Schang - his stats demand more respect from the electorate. Like Bresnahan, we're not doing a good job of placing catchers in their proper context, IMO. Best AL catcher for 1913, 1914. Best major league catcher for 1919, 1921.

13) Burleigh Grimes-P (12): Pitched for a long time behind crappy teams and defenses. Better peak, IMO, than Rixey or Welch places him slightly above those career guys. Best NL pitcher for 1921 and 1929.

14) Mickey Welch-P (13): I have to admit that the 1880's had some fine pitchers. Best major league pitcher for 1885.

15) Lou Boudreau-SS (n/e): After deductions for his WWII years, doesn't stand out as much as I thought he would. But there's not too many guys at his position who could both hit and field. Best AL shortstop for 1940. Best major league shortstop for 1947 and 1948.

Medwick, Ferrell, Averill, Ruffing and Jennings all exist in my top-35, but they just fall short.
   8. Mike Webber Posted: August 01, 2005 at 07:42 PM (#1515785)
Doerr MUCH better than Boudreau; 15% more career and he missed a year for the war, whereas Boudreau didn’t. Doerr 35% more career than Gordon.

Name PA WS Gm
Doerr 8028 281 1865
Boudreau 7023 277 1646
Gordon 6536 242 1566

D vs B 14% 1% 13%
D vs G 23% 16% 19%

I can never get things lined up, but then again I don't get the math in the post above either.

35% more what? Plus Gordon missed one more year than Doerr for WW2.
   9. yest Posted: August 01, 2005 at 07:56 PM (#1515823)
1957 ballot
DiMaggio and Manush make my PHOM this year

1. Joe DiMaggio will he be unanimous? (makes my personal HoM this year)
2. George Sisler I believe everyone knows my view on him by now (made my personal HoM in 1936)
3. Cool Papa Bell the lack over support for Bell is mind boggling to me he was almost universally considered one of the top 5 Negroe Leaguers ever the stats that we have for him are amazing he played good for almost 25 years he was one of the smartest players in Negro Leagues (made my personal HoM in 1948)
4. Pie Traynor most 3B putouts 7 times (made my personal HoM in 1942)
5. Billy Herman most putouts 7 times (made my personal HoM in 1955)
6. Mickey Welch please see his thread (made my personal HoM all the way back in 1898)
7. Joe Sewell love the strikeouts (made my personal HoM in 1939)
8. Biz Mackey another Cooperstown mistake (made my personal HoM in 1949)
9. Stan Hack what’s the hall’s problem with cubs third baseman (made my personal HoM in 1955)
10. Chuck Klein 4 hr titles (made my personal HoM in 1951)
11. Sam Rice if he got 13 more hits would he make the HoM? (made my personal HoM in 1940)
12. Pete Browning 13th in career batting avg. (made my personal HoM in 1906)
13. Jake Beckley 30th in hits (made my personal HoM in 1915)
14. Rube Waddell most Ks/9IP 7 times in a row tying with Vance for the record led in it 1 more time (made my personal HoM in 1917)
15. Hack Wilson 4 hr titles (made my personal HoM in 1940)
16. Joe Medwick 1 triple crown (made my personal HoM in 1956)
17. Hugh Duffy had 100 runs or RBIs every full year he played (made my personal HoM in 1908)
18. Addie Joss 2nd in era (made my personal HoM in 1918)
19. Clark Griffith 54th in wins (made my personal HoM in 1912)
20. Heinie Manush 330 batting avg. (makes my personal HoM this year)
21. Edd Roush323 batting avg (made my personal HoM in 1937)
22. Mule Suttles with I had some antidotal information on him especially quotes
23. Hilton Smith see his thread
24. Ray Schalk the best catcher ever (made my personal HoM in 1938)
25. George Van Haltren 31st in runs (made my personal HoM in 1925)
26. Jimmy Ryan 30th in runs (made my personal HoM in 1926)
27. Rabbit Maranville best shortstop before Ozzie (made my personal HoM in 1939)
28. Bobby Veach most doubles twice (made my personal HoM in 1931)
29. Jake Daubert 29th in triples (made my personal HoM in 1930)
30. Ginger Beaumont 1902 batting title (made my personal HoM in 1932)
31. John McGraw 3rd in on base percentage (made my personal HoM in 1930)
32. Jim Bottomley 2313 hits
33. Kiki Cuyler 2299 hits
34. Alejandro Oms the recent discussion put him here
35. Gavvy Cravath most active HRs 1918, 1919 and 1920 (made my personal HoM in 1928)
36. George J. Burns most walks 5 times (made my personal HoM in 1932)

explanation for players not on my ballot
Hugh Jennings not enough career
Eppa Rixey I don’t find anything special in most of the 20’s pitchers
John Beckwith I’m not enough confident enough in his case to put him higher then he is
Ray Brown I see him as part of a Negro League pitching glut filled with the likes of B. Foster, Day Redding, and Mendez
Wes Ferrell to high a ERA
Earl Averill is just off my ballot
Red Ruffing is just off my ballot
Lou boudrou he played shortstop :>)
   10. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 01, 2005 at 08:16 PM (#1515865)
I revised my ballot - I forgot to add Oms, while Arlett gets knocked off.
   11. karlmagnus Posted: August 01, 2005 at 08:33 PM (#1515903)
Doerr 2042 hits, Gordon 1530. I like things REAL simple -- Gordon wasn't going to get 512 hits in his extra season. By your post also, Doerr exceeds Gordon and Boudreau, mostly by significant percentages, so we're talking only a difference in emphasis.
   12. andrew siegel Posted: August 01, 2005 at 09:13 PM (#1515974)
Clarification--when I said that I recently discovered that I had been underrating Sewell, I should have explained that I came to that conclusion right before filing last "year's" ballot. Last year he jumped from low 20's to 12. This week he falls to 16 based on my discovery of Oms and slight shuffling of very closely rated players. I very much wish I had room for him on this ballot.
   13. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: August 01, 2005 at 10:13 PM (#1516075)

Couldn't you simply say 35% more hits? And you seem to be forgetting that Gordon missed an extra year. Couldn't he have had 160-180 hits? Wouldnt' this make it something more like 20% more?

This is also the place where I would usually question something like Dimaggio being only modestly better than Beckley (more career WS,WARP, etc. even when adjusting Jake to 154 games, without WWII credit and a GIANT peak advantage), but I have given up. Or have I?
   14. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 01, 2005 at 11:15 PM (#1516145)
but I have given up. Or have I?

Since karlmagnus has him #1, I would give up, Mark. :-)
   15. Arrieta, Gentile Arrieta Posted: August 02, 2005 at 12:09 AM (#1516206)
Early ballot this time. Vacation trip starts tomorrow and my computer doesn’t travel. Back in 2 weeks, or 1 HOM year.

1956 ballot:

1. Joe DiMaggio: No war credit needed. (PHOM)

2. Red Ruffing: Will he be doomed by the bad seasons, the unremarkable ERA+, and having his best years with good-to-great teams? Career stats obviously aren’t everything, but even with the bad years he accumulated 322 WS, 113.3 WARP1. Being an ace, co-ace, or valuable contributor for 9 pennant winners is a positive in my book. (PHOM 1956)

3. Cool Papa Bell: Hitting, incredible speed, great defense, long career. Similar to, but better than, Carey. Even if the 400-odd win shares get reduced to 350, he’s well ahead of any “glut”. (PHOM)

4. George Sisler: If the career had a more normal shape, Sisler would likely be in already. The sharp break in performance may have killed his chances. The HOF got this one right; he’s been in since ’39. (PHOM 1938)

5. Burleigh Grimes: 270 wins, .560 W%, Retro-Cy, 5 STATS AS, 9 all-star quality seasons. (PHOM 1942)

6. Biz Mackey: If even the low win shares estimates are anywhere near accurate, this is one of the all-time best catchers. #1 HOF-caliber career (among non-HOFers) on Riley’s list in the new ESPN encyclopedia.

7. Billy Herman: Starts a parade of infielders. Slight edge over Sewell.

8. Joe Sewell: Ten all-star caliber seasons in a 14-year career, A- defender, very good offense for a middle infielder. (PHOM 1939)

9. Stan Hack: The HOM’s a little short on thirdbasemen. Stan’s an excellent candidate, 316 WS, 4 STATS AS, 10 all-star quality seasons, good defense, OB-heavy OPS+ of 119.

10. Bobby Doerr
11. Lou Boudreau
Tough to choose. Boudreau has the defensive edge and the enormous MVP season. Doerr was more frequently at or near tops at his position.

12. John Beckwith: Great hitter. Defense maybe fine, maybe not-so-fine. I’m still not completely sold, though it may not matter after this week.

13. Eppa Rixey: Long career, solid performer, innings-eater.

14. Carl Mays: Good peak candidate, career edge over Ferrell, pretty good hitter.

15. Joe Medwick: He, Averill & Indian Bob are very close. In fact, there’s a bunch of people could go here.

Required explanations:
Ferrell: Impressive peak, but a short career. I like Mays & Waddell better among the low-innings guys. He’s close.
Averill: Also close. Topnotch outfielder practically every year of a short career.
Jennings: Very impressive peak, but not much else. Not close.
   16. EricC Posted: August 02, 2005 at 01:51 AM (#1516325)
Hack shortish career

As of 2001, Hack was 14th all-time in innings fielded at 3B. He shouldn't be faulted for a short career.
   17. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 02, 2005 at 02:12 AM (#1516354)
As of 2001, Hack was 14th all-time in innings fielded at 3B. He shouldn't be faulted for a short career.

Santo gets the same comments, yet is even higher up on the list of third basemen with the most games.
   18. Tiboreau Posted: August 02, 2005 at 06:49 AM (#1516629)
It seems that we’ve amassed an interesting collection of borderline middle infielders. At the moment, Herman, while close, is one step above the crowd, IMO, while Childs, a strong representative of the difficulties MI’s had to overcome in the 1890s, is a clear second (excluding the extreme peak candidates, Jennings & Moore). Gordon, IMO, is the 2b version of Lou Boudreau; meanwhile Doerr’s value seems similar to Joe Sewell’s.

1. cf Joe DiMaggio (nc)—“Where have you gone Joe DiMaggio? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you. What’s that you say, Mrs. Robinson? ‘Joltin’ Joe has left and gone away.’” PHoM 1957
2. 3b John Beckwith (2, 3, 3)—His spot on my ballot is mainly based on Gadfly’s inestimable opinion on his hitting and Chris Cobb’s Win Shares projections. PHoM 1940
3. 2b Billy Herman (4, 5, 5)— According to Win Shares, only Jennings, Moore, and Hack have a better peak among middle infield candidates, and only Leach and Hack have similar career value. According to WARP, only Jennings has a better peak than all eligible candidates outside the Yankee Clipper and Ee-Yah Jennings, and only Red Ruffing has comparable or better career value. Billy receives credit for time missed due to WWII during ’44 and ’45. PHoM 1956
4. cf Alejandro Oms (ob)—The poor man’s Paul Waner, last “year” I placed him around #20. After a closer look, I decided that he is definitely HoM worthy. Only one season over 30 WS, but 8 over 25; considering the effects of regression, had a real good peak IMO as well as a real good career (340 WS). PHoM 1942
5. sp Wes Ferrell (5, 6, 6)—His peak is comparable to compatriot Lefty Grove and places him among the top 3 pitchers of the ‘30s. ERA+ underrates Ferrell considering his consistent presence among the IP leaders, his attempts to hang on at the end of his career, and his aptitude as a hitter. PHoM 1957
6. 3b Stan Hack (6, 7, 7)—Similar to Billy Herman in both career and peak value; his peak was better but considering WWII Herman’s career advantage gets a boost while Stan’s best season is docked a bit.
7. sp Clark Griffith (7, 8, 8)—A good balance between peak and career: His peak value is closer to Ferrell, Waddell and Mays than Rixey and Grimes, while his career value isn’t too far off the latter group and solidly ahead of the former. PHoM 1939
8. ss Hughie Jennings (8, 9, 9)—Jennings has the highest peak of any of the available candidates (excluding the Yankee Clipper). His peak also comprises of 74.7% of his warp1 and 70.1% of his WS. In the end, the brilliance of his peak outshines any questions I have regarding his career value.
9. lf Joe Medwick (9, 10, 10)—Win Shares sees Medwick in a better light than either WARP or traditional stats and the WWII seasons need to be docked a bit, but in the end I see Ducky Wucky as among the best of the outfield candidates with an excellent peak and good career.
10. cf Hugh Duffy (10, 11, 11)—Excellent peak puts Duffy among the top of the outfield glut, and considering that his peak makes up 48.8% of his total WS, Duffy’s career value isn’t too shabby, either.
11. sp Dizzy Dean (11, 12, 12)—Like Jennings, the Diz only played five full years, but what years those were! Win Shares credits Dean with the best peak among eligible pitchers, while only Wes Ferrell has a better peak according to WARP.
12. ss Dobie Moore (12, 13, 13)—Called the “best unrecognized player” of the Negro Leagues by Bill James, and has been compared to Hughie Jennings. Receives credit for his play with the 25th Infantry Wreckers from 1917 to 1920.
13. rf Gavy Cravath (13, 14, 14)—“He played ball, and lived his life, with a minimum amount of effort and nervous energy.” Cravath gets extra credit for his minor league performance, obviously, especially as the star of the Minneapolis Millers.
14. sp Bucky Walters (14, 15, 15)—When at his best he was not only excellent pitcher but an inning eater as well. More career value than Ferrell but less peak, especially considering the decreased competition during the war.
15. 2b Cupid Childs (ob)—One of the best infielders of the underrepresented 1890s. Childs had a great peak, while his career was not overly short considering the rigors of playing infield at that time. Moved up due to comparisons with the recent influx of middle infielders.

17. cf Earl of Snohomish (ob)—Another center fielder with a fine resume to add to the ever-growing glut of solid outfield candidates. I give Averill credit for his ’28 PCL performance.
19. ss Lou Boudreau (nc)—IMO, Boudreau’s career is similar to Joe Gordon’s and Earl Averill’s; like these gentleman he had a real good peak, but it’s not enough to put him on my ballot. However, I don’t think that they’re undeserving candidates, and I expect them to get my vote during the controversial ‘60s.
20. c Biz Mackey (ob)—Third best catcher of the Negro Leagues whose primary value was in his defense. Best of the group of borderline catchers, followed by Roger Bresnahan and Wally Schang.
21. sp Eppa Rixey (ob)— Suffers from my re-evaluation of long, peakless pitching careers made in constructing my PHoM. The new evaluation puts them in better alignment with their position player counterparts.
27. 2b Bobby Doerr (nc)—Similar in value to Joe Sewell, IMO. The only difference is the competition they’re compared to at their respective positions.
28. sp Red Ruffing (ob)— Like Rixey, dropped due to my reevaluation of long, peakless pitching careers. Was also a reality check for my reliance on WARP for the position.
   19. Kelly in SD Posted: August 02, 2005 at 11:02 AM (#1516660)
Part one of two on Red Ruffing. I am not finished with all the research I want to do. I still need to do a comparison of him with Gomez - who pitched against whom, pitched against different teams, etc. But, in general, it is finished.

Summary: Ruffing matched the performance of other Yankee pitchers. He just never got hurt. His bat helps his WS tremendously compared with someone like Gomez. He did not pitch well compared with the rest of the staff when facing teams that finished ahead of the Yankees from 1930 to 1942, nor did he pitch well compared to his teammates when facing the Yankees' closest rivals when the Yankees won the AL. Any pitcher could have, and did, have success pitching for the Yankees during the period when Ruffing pitched for them.

Extended version:
Yankee career numbers.
Wins: 231
Loss: 124
%age: .651
ERA: 3.47 from 3168 IP and 1222 earned runs
K/W: 1.43 from 1526 K and 1066 BB
WH/9: 11.54 from 3168 IP, 1066 BB, and 2995 hits allowed

I looked at Retrosheet to see how Ruffing did in a variety of situations. I found something surprising to me. His overall record while a Yankee was 231 – 124 or a .651 winning percentage. In games he started, the Yankees finished 241-146 or .623. He was used a few times out of the bullpen in his first few years with the Yankees and went 4 – 5 (with 7 saves) so as a starter, his record was 227 – 119 or .656. The Yankees went 14 – 27 in games where Ruffing started, but did not get a decision.

The Yankees’ record in 1930-1942, 1945-1946 was 1430 – 862 or .624 percentage. The Yankees record in Ruffing’s starts was 241 – 146 or .623. Including his bullpen work gives you 245 – 151 or .619. So the Yankees performed exactly as well with Ruffing as they did without Ruffing over his 3168 innings with the team.
Ruffing starting and getting a decision: 227 – 119
Ruffing starting and someone else gets a decision: 14 – 27
Ruffing gets a decision as a reliever: 4 – 5.
I would expect a HoM pitcher to pull his team above its average performance. And it is not the case of one or two terrible years dragging him back to the team. From 1931 to 1936, the Yankees had a worse record with Ruffing starting than they did overall every year. The same is true for 1940 and 1942. The funny thing is that the difference positive or negative is often quite large.
The following chart is year, Yankees overall W/L, W/L when Ruffing starts or gets a relief decision, W/L when Ruffing does not start or get a relief decision, difference:
1930   86–68 .558  15 -  8 .653  71 – 60 .542 + .111
1931   94–59 .614  16 – 16 .500  78 – 43 .645  - .145
1932  107–47 .695  20 – 11 .645  87 – 36 .707  -.062
1933   91–59 .607  11 – 18 .379  80 – 41 .661  -.282
1934   94–60 .610  19 – 14 .576  75 – 46 .620  -.046
1935   89–60 .597  17 – 13 .567  72 – 47 .605  -.038
1936  102–51 .667  20 – 13 .606  82 – 38 .683  -.077
1937  102–52 .662  23 – 8  .742  79 – 44 .642  +.100
1938   99–53 .651  22 – 8  .733  77 – 45 .631  +.102
1939  106–45 .702  21 – 7  .750  85 – 38 .691 +.059
1940   88–66 .571  16 – 14 .533  72 – 52 .581  -.048
1941  101–53 .656  17 – 6  .739  84 – 47 .641  +.098
1942  103–51 .668  15 – 9  .625  88 – 42 .677  -.052
1945   81–71 .533   8 – 3  .727  73 – 68 .518  +.209
1946   87–67 .565   5 – 3  .625  82 – 64 .562  +.063

I checked to see if he was facing a disproportionate share of strong teams during his career. I found Ruffing to be slightly more likely to face a first place team and a fourth place team over the course of a season than any other team, but not much.
On average, he started against a
first place team 4.25 times a year,
second place 3.63 per year
third place 3.5 times
fourth place 4.14 times
fifth place 3.53 times
sixth place 3.4 times
seventh place 3.73 times
eighth place 3.53 times

This is nothing like Ford under Stengal.

In any case, even if was pitching slightly more frequently against the top teams than the bottom, he was not doing as well as the rest of the team did against those same teams. I looked specifically at the pre-WWII years because post-war, he only had one or two starts against any one team (in those 2 years, he went 2 – 4 vs. the top 3 teams)
In the years leading up to WWII, the Yankees finished 1st in 1932, 1936 – 1939, 1941-1942. Against the 2nd and 3rd place teams when the Yankees finished 1st, when Ruffing started the Yankees finished 28 – 27, but when everyone else started, the Yankees went 150 – 98. That is almost 100 percentage point difference: .509 to .605.
They finished 3rd in 1930 and 1940 and 2nd in 1931, 1933 – 1935. In those six years, Ruffing went 15 – 24, .384, against the teams the Yankees were chasing. When he wasn’t pitching, they went 60-77, .438.

I also did some totals for every pitcher who started 10 games in a season for the Yankees during 1930-1942 and 1945-46. There were 33 different pitcher who in one season or another started 10 games. 3 of them had losing records: 5 – 11 for a WWII pitcher, 6 – 7 for DeShong who started in 1934, and Sherrid 12 – 13 in 1930. 2 others were at .500 in their seasons as starters: Gettel, 15-15 in 45-46 and Breuer, 25-25 from 1940-1942. The other 28 starters had winning records while starting for the Yankees. Pretty much everyone who pitched for the Yankees had a winning record as a starter.
I think there was so much talent defensively and offensively that Yankee pitchers were like running backs to the Denver Broncos. Everyone looks good running behind that offensive line. Everyone looks good pitching for the Yankees. Yes, Gomez, Ruffing, and Chandler were a cut above the rest, but if a team can constantly plug new pitchers every year and they all have winning records with the Yankees, but do not do much after leaving the Yankees, I think it is the surroundings that have the most to do with it.
   20. Kelly in SD Posted: August 02, 2005 at 11:26 AM (#1516672)
Part 2

Esoteric Stuff:
Win Shares: 322
Win Shares per 275 IP: 20.38
Best 3 years: 75
Best 7 years: 163
At his retirement, he ranked 9th in career win shares by a pitcher post 1893. He ranked somewhere worse than 35th in win shares per 275 innings pitched. He ranked 43rd tied, in best 3 years (non-consecutive) or peak score. He ranked 32nd in best 7 years or prime score.
Compared to just HoMers: He would rank 9th in career win shares. He would rank last in peak by 5 win shares to Ted Lyons and by 14 to Eddie Plank. His prime score would tie Red Faber for last. His per 275 innings score would be ahead of only Red Faber. Well, if Red Faber is our standard for the HoM, he is in, but then so are about 10 more pitchers.
Compared to contemporaries / post 1893 eligibles: See previous post up the thread for details. He would be first in career win shares. In per 275 innings, he would be around 17th. In peak, he would be tied for 21st. In prime, he would be roughly 15th.

All-Star Appearances:
All-Star games: 6. This is a good number among his contemporaries, but nothing special. Hubbell appeared in 9, Grove 6. That is a good comparison. Hold on. Bucky Walters went to 6 all-star games. Lon Warneke went to 5. Lefty Gomez went to 7. Bobo Newsom went to 4. Paul Derringer and Tommy Bridges, they also went to 6.
STATS in their All-Time Sourcebook did retro All-Star teams:
Ruffing was chosen for 5. So was Ferrell; and Burleigh Grimes; and Urban Shocker; and Eppa Rixey; and Lefty Gomez. Carl Mays was chosen for 6. Bucky Walters, Herb Pennock, and Wilbur Cooper was chosen to 4.
Win Shares All-Star: Selected by ME based on top 4 win shares totals in each league in each year.
Ruffing has 4 of these. So do Mel Harder, Dizzy Dean, Bucky Walters, Vic Willis, Carl Mays, Rube Waddell, Urban Shocker, and Bob Shawkey.
Ferrell, Cooper, Grimes, and Rixey all made 6 though.

How about top 10s in league or majors?
Ruffing appearances in top 10 in pitching per win shares:
1928: 21: 6th league, 13th majors
1932: 26: 3rd league, 3rd majors
1934: 17: 7th league, 19th majors
1935: 22: 5th league, 9th majors
1936: 23: 5th league, 8th majors
1937: 24: 3rd league, 5th majors
1938: 25: 1st league, 2nd majors
1939: 22: 4th league, 6th majors
1941: 15: 9th league, below 20th majors

So Ruffing has 9 apps in the league top 10 and 6 majors top 10s.

Bobo Newsom has 7 and 4.
Tommy Bridges has 6 and 2.
Dizzy Dean has 6 and 5 and had less than ½ the career of Red.
Paul Derringer has 5 and 3.
Mel Harder has 5 and 5.
Lefty Gomez has 5 and 3.
Lon Warneke has 6 and 4.
Lefty Grove has 13 and 12.
Carl Hubbell has 9 and 6.
Ted Lyons has 7 and 5.

Stan Coveleski has 7 and 7.
Eppa Rixey has 8 and 6.
Carl Mays has 7 and 6
Burleigh Grimes has 8 and 6.
Wilbur Cooper has 9 and 7.

Vic Willis has 8 and 5.
Rube Waddell has 5 and 4.

And I didn’t do Hippo Vaughn, Urban Shocker, or Bob Shawkey who have many top 10s each, also.

So what separates Red? He was healthy. And he pitched for the Yankees. In a pitcher’s park. With good defenses behind him. Therefore, he won a lot of games.

I was somewhat surprised to find the Yankees played worse at home when he started than otherwise and the reverse on the road. The Yankees during Ruffing's years were 1430 - 862 (.624) overall, at home: 781 - 364 (.682), on the road: 649 - 498 (.565). In Ruffing's starts, the Yankees were only 130 - 65 (.667) at home, but 111 - 81 (.578) on the road.
That .682 record is 105 - 49 in 154 game schedule.

I also looked at WS per 9 innings for every pitcher who had 10 starts in a season during this period. It is hard to come to any conclusion because the Yankees had an average of almost 2 new starters every year and only 5 pitchers even had 700 innings pitched for the Yankees over the 15 years (at least mainly as starters): Ruffing - 3168, Gomez - 2411, Chandler - 1048, Pearson - 825, and Bonham - 737. These totals are based only on seasons where they got 10 starts or 100 innings pitched while Ruffing was pitching, so Gomez's injury season of 1940 is not included.
Anyway. Ruffing is the best among these 5 "long-timers," but it is solely due to his proficiency with the bat.
Player .. Win Shares per 9 innings
Ruffing .. .753
Bonham ... .746
Chandler .. .721
Pearson .. .698
Gomez .. .687

I don't have access to seasonal win shares broken down b/t pitching and hitting, but for his career Ruffing had 10% of his value from his bat. Gomez had zero and probably lost win shares because he hit so badly. But, a pitcher's bat counts so Ruffing comes out ahead.

In general, Ruffing's candidacy causes me some doubts, but not as much as Rixey's. If you are voting for Ruffing, how about Grimes? or Cooper?
   21. TomH Posted: August 02, 2005 at 12:26 PM (#1516690)
Thanks Kelly! For us Ruffing voters (who typically don't rely much on 'peak'), this is good research that tempers his case a bit in my eyes.
One note that has been made before: the claim that Red pitched in front of good defenses is only true starting in 1934 (half of his career, age 30 onward); before that, Yankee and Red Sox defenses were below average by most measures.
   22. andrew siegel Posted: August 02, 2005 at 12:56 PM (#1516709)

Your first post had me all convinced to drop Ruffing 20 or so places, but your second post strikes me as working in his favor.

If a guy has roughly the same number of all-star teams and league and majors top 10's as the top peak and prime candidates and has more career value, doesn't that speak in his favor rather than against him?
   23. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: August 02, 2005 at 01:55 PM (#1516777)

It coudl also show us that Redding benefitted more from his W-L record (i.e. playing for the yankees) than other pitchers from his era and is therefore overrated in history's eyes.

I am nto friend of Red Ruffing. I have him in the 30's for the same reasons that Kelly pointed out and dont' think he should be a HOMer. However, I cant' fight too vigorously against a Yankee making the HOM ;-).
   24. TomH Posted: August 02, 2005 at 02:08 PM (#1516790)
Ruffing does have a fine post-season record of 7W, 2L, 2.63 ERA
   25. Daryn Posted: August 02, 2005 at 02:31 PM (#1516822)
No time for new analysis this week, but I like herman the best of the middle infielder glut and I have him at 15.

1. Dimaggio -- Larry Walker is his closest comp and Joe did it without Coors. 3 MVPs. 13 All Star appearances -- probably would've been 4 and 16 without the war. Best Age 22 season of all-time.

2. Mickey Welch – 300 wins, lots of grey ink. RSI data shows those wins are real. Compares fairly well to Keefe. I like his oft repeated record against HoMers.

3. Jake Beckley -- ~3000 hits but no black ink at all. Crawford (HOMer) and Wheat (HOMer) are two of his three most similars. 3200+ hits adjusted to 162 games.

4. Eppa Rixey – see Grimes comment.

5. Red Ruffing – fits nicely in between Rixey and Grimes – definitely better than Grimes, perhaps better than Rixey.

6. Burleigh Grimes – as a career voter, I have difficulty seeing the vast difference others see between Rixey and Grimes. There is not much of a spread between here and Ferrell, a five person group of whiteball pitchers that includes Waddell (14th) and Griffith (18th). If you like Ruffing, you should like Grimes.

7. Dick Redding – probably the 6th best blackball pitcher of all-time (behind, at least, Williams and Paige and likely behind the Fosters and Brown), and that is good enough for me.

8. Biz Mackey – I vote career over peak, so I like Mackey the best of the eligible catchers. It is close though, and Mackey is not that much ahead of Schang (who I have in at 29).

9. George Sisler – I like the hits, the OPS+ and the batting average.

10. Cool Papa Bell – I have decided to move Bell up from the outfield glut to here, ahead of Suttles and Beckwith. As flawed as they may be, I have chosen to rely, in part, on the 1952 Courier poll and more importantly the 1999 SABR poll. I know the former has its flaws but it doesn’t appear to canonize Bell (he is a 2nd team all-star there). I know the SABR poll takes into account non-playing influence, but it has Bell ahead of Charleston and Gibson, among others, and that must mean something (particularly when it accords with all the anecdotal evidence and a possible Cobb MLE of over 4000 hits).

11. Joe Medwick – 10 time all-star, great 1935-1938 peak. Edges ahead of the outfield glut.

12. Roger Bresnahan – Great OBP, arguably the best catcher in baseball for a six year period. Counting stats, like all catchers of this time and earlier, are really poor. I like him better than Schang because he compared better to his contemporaries, if you count him as a catcher.

13. Beckwith –The Beckwith thread is funny – Gadfly has him hitting .400 with 40HRs per year and Cobb has him at 315 career WS, which is pretty much how I see him.

14. Rube Waddell -- I like the three times ERA+ lead, the career 134 ERA+ and, of course, all those strikeouts (plus the 1905 Triple Crown).

15. Billy Herman – close to Sewell, the all-star games are impressive. This is the beginning of my defensive infield positions glut – Herman, Sewell, Leach, Hack, Gordon, Doerr, Traynor and Monroe are all pretty close to me.

16. Stan Hack – either just better or just worse than Traynor.

23. Wes Ferrell

32. Earl Averill

43. Jennings – he’d be lower for me if you guys weren’t all so sure he was great. Peak alone is insufficient for me.
   26. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 02, 2005 at 02:56 PM (#1516874)
Here's Sunnday2's ballot


1. Joe DiMaggio (new, PHoM 1957)

Ya think?

2. Hughie Jennings (1 last year-2-3, PHoM 1927)
3. Dobie Moore (2-3-4, PHoM 1942)

The two great peak SSs move down one notch each, and carry my consensus score down with them. Oh well.

4. Joe Medwick (4-6-2, PHoM 1954)
5. George Sisler (5-7-5, PHoM 1938)

The top two pure “hitters” stay where they are.

6. Tommy Bond (7-8-6, PHoM 1929)
7. Rube Waddell (8-9-9, PHoM 1932)
8. Jose Mendez (9-10-10, PHoM 1957)

My top three pitchers move up one slot each and Jose Mendez goes PHoM from the backlog, just edging Willie Wells and Harry Stovey and Teddy Lyons, all of whom rate between Mendez and Herman for the moment. My 1958 PHoM is likely to consist of three from among Wells, Stovey, Lyons and Willard Brown, though Herman, Beckwith and Boudreau will get another look. (I expect Willard Brown to end up somewhere between #7 and #12 in 1958.)

9. Billy Herman (11-12-11)

I’m sure he’s the best available 2B and he moves up now as a result of my PHoM review that also included Beckwith and Boudreau.

10. John Beckwith (10-11-13)
11. Lou Boudreau (new)

Beckwith stays put as Herman moves up. Sweet Lou drops five slots from prelim. His 1948 is an ARod type year and he was an A+ fielder with doubles power. But up until ‘48 it wasn’t at all clear that he was better than Junior Stephens.

12. Addie Joss (13-x-x)
13. Ed Williamson (14-x-15, PHoM 1924)
14. Joe Gordon (15-new)
15. Pete Browning (17 last year, last on ballot in 1938)

Last year’s bottom three move up a notch after CF battle royal. Browning replaces Roush, who was 12th, at the head of the CF glut. Duffy also moves up while Averill, who I half expected to move up, treads water. Roush and Bell plummet.

Dropped out: Edd Roush (12-14-12)

16. Bobby Doerr (new)
17. Larry Doyle (16)
18. Charley Jones (18, PHOM 1921)
19. Gavy Cravath (19)
20. Chuck Klein (20)

21. Hugh Duffy (41)
22. Cupid Childs (21, PHOM 1925)
23. Eppa Rixey (23)
24. Joe Sewell (24)
25. Earl Averill (27)
26. Alejandro Oms (not rated) Thought he’d rate a little higher, in fact had him #10a in prelims. But 125 OPS+ in 9000 PAs is somewhere in Jimmy Ryan, Al Oliver, Enos Slaughter, Willie Keeler territory, which is not a bad territory though Keeler is not in my PHoM yet and Slaughter will pick up some WWII credit and will end up looking significantly better. I just don’t see Oms as better than Averill nor Averill better than Duffy nor Duffy better than Browning nor Browning as good as Medwick and Sisler. I do see Oms as better than Bell or Poles, but I will also be shocked if he is as good as Willard Brown.
27. Bill Monroe (25)
28. Clark Griffith (26)
29. Stan Hack (28)
30. Eddie Cicotte (29)

Required: Red Ruffing is #33, Wes Ferrell is #35.
   27. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: August 02, 2005 at 07:12 PM (#1517415)
1957 ballot

Getting this in early this year. I am doing a reworkign of position players that I shoudlhave done for the 1958 ballot. Next 'year' should be one fun year.

1. Joe DiMaggio (x, PHOM 1957) - Easily my #1, he even has a better peak than Hughie! He may have been slightly overrated by history because of his being a Yankee and the fact that he looked so good out there, but I would still put him at #4 all-time in CF among MLB players.

2. Hughie Jennings (2, PHOM 1938) - only very innercircle guys seme to have better peaks than Hughie and most of that is the length of their peaks. To me he is an easy HOMer.

3. Lou Boudreau (x, PHOM 1957) - It is close between He and Beckwith. In the end I went with with Gold Glove SS who could hit over the decent 3B who could absolutely mash. Both are HOM quality.

4. John Beckwith (4, PHOM 1949) - I see him as a 30's NeL version of Dick Allen, both in temperment and the ability to hit.

5. Wes Ferrell (5, PHOM 1956) - He may not be the best pitcher on the board but in my estimation he was the best player to have played the position of pitcher on the board.

6. Stan Hack (7) - I have a soft spot for infielders who are also OBP machines. Hack got on base, was one of the best players in baseball during his prime, and is in the top 15 in games played all-time at 3B. One of baseball's most underrated players.

7. Billy Herman (8) - The best of the new 2B glut.

8. Joe Medwick (6) - I believe I may have been giving him too much credit for his best season. I still think he should make it in one day.

9. Cupid Child (9, PHOM 1939) - I think he seperates himself from Gordon and Doerr based on his peak and that he played a lot of games for an 1890's MIer. Best 2B of the 19th century in my opinion.

10. Hugh Duffy (10) - Best of the 1890's CF glut due to a superior peak.

11. Dick Redding (11) - 2nd best NeL pitcher of the dead ball ear and quite possibly one of the top 5 of all-time.

12. Charlie Keller (x) - With War Credit he has the best peak of any outfielder in my view and his career wasn't Jennings-level short either. Neck and Neck with Kiner.

13. Bucky Walters (12) - I have his pitching only peak as higher than that of Feller, Dean, and Waddell, guys I have supported in the past or am supporting now.

14. Earl Averill (13) - Great 10 year prime, a season or two of MiL credit gets him to the borderline of the HOM.

15. Dobie Moore (15) - The Black Hughie Jennings. I dont' believe that his peak was as high and he was not an innocent player in the drama that ended his career.
   28. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: August 02, 2005 at 07:21 PM (#1517442)
16-20 Griffith, Rixey, Gordon, Doerr, Browning
21-25 Dean, GVh, Sisler, Oms, Waddell
26-30 Bresnahan, Mendez, Cravath, Brown, Willis
31-35 Mackey, Berger, Roush, Bell, Lundy
36-40 Monroe, Ruffing, Veach, Doyle, Sewell
41-45 Shocker, Johnson, Leach, Thomas, McGraw
46-50 Scales, Wilson, Chance, Traynor, Cicotte

Newbies of Note

19. Bobby Doerr - I think that he is slightly behind Joe Gordon once war credtis and deductiosn are factored in. Gordon is ahead on peak, prime is roughly the same, career goes to Doerr. I guess it depends on what you value.

24. Alejandro Oms - I know that he isnt' a newbie but jumped him into my top 50 this weel. Decent CF defense and a 125 OPS+ are impressive but I dont' see him as decidedly better than GVH, Duffy, Averill, or even Berger. I dont' undersatnd how he is top 5 material.

29. Willard Brown - This may be a conservative placement of Brown as I am certain a clearer picture of him will emerge once Chris Cobb comes back and we get a better handle on his defense and the 1937-1943 NeL offensive levels. Even so, I don't see how he is any better than Browning or Cravath.

Required Disclosures:

Mackey and Bell both suffer from a lack of peak in my eyes, though both have imressive resumes. At one point I thought that they might slip onto my ballot at some point in the future but now that they are in the 30's, I don't know. I am nto against their electiosn per se, but I do think that they are overrated by the group.

Red Ruffing is someone that I just dont' understand, even as soemone how has supported Eppa Rixey in the past. I just don't see very much excellent pitchign from Redding.

As per the usuals, Sisler is jus of ballot, Beckley was never a great player and Welch is overrated by his era.
   29. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: August 02, 2005 at 08:41 PM (#1517691)
1957 Ballot

1. Joe DiMaggio. If you combined Joe DiMaggio and Magglio Ordonez, you'd get Joe DiMagglio Ordonez. And you'd have a worse player than Joe D. Which is really saying something when you think about it. Show me the coffee!

2. John Beckwith. Finally gets his due.

3. Hugh Duffy. Probably about the same peak, prime, and career stats as Beckwith would have had, now that I think on it. But position breaks the tie.

4. Alejandro Oms. Since jschmeagol asked how Oms can be so near the top of ones queue (and how he could pHOM for me I suppose), I'll offer my own personal two-word answer. Billy Williams. I adjust everything to 162, and I'm a WS guy. When I added Oms's adjusted-to-162 WS into my corner outfield comparison set, he ended up having values for peak, prime, and career that look like Williams's. Now I should add that I've credited Oms with full time play in the two seasons prior to 1921. I believe the anecdotal evidence on his thread regarding his industrial play supports this conclusion, particularly when combined with two other pieces of evidence: a) that he played on the Pompez team in 1917---though not well, thus no 1917 or 1918 credit b) that he began his NgL career at age 26 and hit the ground running. Giving him two seasons of credit seems entirely reasonable, and is consistent with the types of credit I've doled out to other candidates (Averill, Moore, Cravath, soldiers, and others).

In comparison to other corner OFs, while his MLE peak isn't all that close to Medwick's, his prime is very close, and his extended prime and career leave Medwick in the dust. Medwick is next on my ballot. I think Oms is probably equal or better than the short-to-medium career pitchers who follow him on my ballot, and as you all know I'm not sold on Boudreau, Doerr, or Gordon, none of whom has it on Dobie Moore, Cupid Childs, or anyone else already in the backlog but just off of my ballot. That's the anatomy of a ballot I guess.

5. Joe Medwick. Great big peak. He's looking like a strong candidate for 1958's ultra fractured ballot.

6. Jose Mendez. I understand the lack of certainty around Mendez's case, but anyone FOWF who haven't reconsidered Mendez in a while ought to. He's the man.

7. Gavy Cravath. Peak not as outstanding as Medwick, and though better than Oms's, not enough to make up for the career gap.

8. Leroy Matlock. See Leroy pitch. See Doc's consensus score plummet. ; ) It's just my gut, I guess, but Matlock looks like a dead ringer for that claque of hurlers that includes Mendez, Vance, Coveleski, Walters, and Ferrell.

9. Bucky Walters. I'm probably the only fellow who thinks Walters is better than Ferrell, and I'm probably the only one with Bucky this high. Is it enough to get a Christmas card this year from his grandchildren? My system, with all its flaws and whatnot says that both of these guys are fine candidates for election, so it's not an either-or for me. But Walters simply looks better in comparison to his leagues than Ferrell did, in my opinion.

10. Wes Ferrell. Can you imagine how intense the Boston clubhouse must have been between Grove and Ferrell? What if somehow Johnny Allen had ended up in there too? That woulda been the surliest, angriest, and smallest clubhouse in the league.

11. George J. Burns. Is the 1910s NL really that bad? I understand that the big stars were over in the AL, but there's got to be some love for this oft-overlooked leadoff man extraordinaire.

12. George Van Haltren. At one time, I had three Georges on one ballot (Ruth, GVH, and Burns). I did a re-eval on GVH for the 724th time, and I've busted him down to 12th. I'll probably leave him here for a few weeks, but he's very clearly among my CF electables, and anyway, he's not got it as bad as Poles who got bounced off the ballot completely (sorry, Spotster). Ah well, that's life in a meritocracy.

13. Stan Hack. Hack benefits from a re-evaluation this week, and he slides up from 15th to 14th. The real winner, however, is...

14. Billy Herman. Herman gets onto my ballot after (re)considerable anguish and much gnashing of Spots Poles's teeth. In fact, both Hack and Herman earn their ballot placement due to a combo of a pretty-good peak with a decently long career at important positions. I think both are among the odds-on faves for 1958 (with Medwick, of course) among the white guys eligible.

15a) Ted Lyons.

15. Red Ruffing. Reconsideration moves him a notch above Eppa Rixey and onto my ballot. He'll never rise above Ted Lyons who had a real peak, but Ruffing's now leading the charge among the long-career twirlers like Grimes, and Rixey falls just off the end.

Lou Boudreau: He's better than Doerr and Gordon with whom he is most often compared, but I think he's still behind Jennings, Moore, Monroe, Childs, and possibly Averill and Poles.

Charlie Keller: The Frank Howard of his era. I love both players, but neither hung on long enough to match up with corner infielders who put together similar peaks and considerably longer careers.

Buck O'Neill: Without running any kind of numbers, my gut comps him to Charlie Grimm or Phil Cavarretta. Not good enough.

Max Manning: We haven't talked much about Dr. Cyclops. He was good and might be worth revisiting in greater depth.
   30. Brent Posted: August 03, 2005 at 02:51 AM (#1519099)
1957 Ballot:

Again this year, several interesting new candidates appear, though only one premiers at the top of my ballot. Two center fielders enter my PHoM—the Yankee Clipper and the Earl of Snohomish. If I could, I’d vote for 30 candidates this year.

1. Joe DiMaggio –
While Joltin’ Joe certainly doesn’t need any minor league credit, in thinking about his career it may not hurt to remember that he began by playing for 3 years in the PCL at a very good major league level before finally going to Gotham. In the 1935 season he was one of the best players in any league anywhere—the PCL MVP and leader of the pennant-winning San Francisco team. Maybe I’ll run his MLEs just to see what I get. (PHoM 1957)

2. Wes Ferrell –
Underappreciated. In his prime he was more valuable than Hubbell, Lyons, or Ruffing. (PHoM 1944)

3. Earl Averill –
An outstanding hitter in both the PCL and the AL. Counting 1928, 10 seasons with 24+ WS. (PHoM 1957)

4. Dizzy Dean –
I see Dean’s HoM case as just as strong as Jennings’—not sure why Jennings garners so much more support. See my case for Dean in # 26 on the Dizzy Dean thread.

5. Hughie Jennings –
In the 1986 BJHBA, James presented two top-100 lists, one for peak value, the other for career value. It seems to me that the HoM should include the top peak players regardless of how they place on career. Jennings would rank about # 30 on my all-time peak list, fully qualified for the HoM. (PHoM 1933)

6. Bucky Walters –
The successor to Hubbell and Dean as the top pitcher in the NL.

7. José de la Caridad Méndez –
See my case for Méndez in # 65 on the José Méndez thread. Méndez remains the greatest unelected Cuban player. (PHoM 1938)

8. Hugh Duffy –
8 seasons with 25+ WS, with a high of 39 (adjusting to 154 gm schedule); A+ defensive outfielder. (PHoM 1931)

9. Burleigh Grimes –
My general philosophy is to rank players based on their best seasons and not pay too much attention to their worst ones. (PHoM 1940)

10. Ducky Medwick –
7 seasons with 24+ WS, with a high of 40, places him just behind Duffy in my rankings.

11. Alejandro Oms –
7 seasons with 25+ WS according to the MLEs. And like Averill, he’s missing the first 3-5 seasons of a typical HoM career.

12. Red Ruffing –
7 seasons with 7+ Warp1; 7-2, 2.63 in the World Series.

13. Biz Mackey –
Outstanding defensive catcher; also a good hitter during his prime.

14. Roger Bresnahan –
One of the first to be a top hitter while catching 100+ games; paved the way for Cochrane, Hartnett, and Dickey.

15. Tommie Leach –
7 seasons with 24+ WS, 2 seasons with 30+ (adjusting to 154 gm schedule); A+ defense at both third base and center field. (PHoM 1932)

These guys are meritorious too:

16. Cool Papa Bell

17. Billy Herman –
Just misses my ballot – he’ll eventually make it.

18. Charlie Keller –
8½ seasons of a Mel Ott-type career; tied for 27th in career OPS+. Good defensive left fielder and--with DiMaggio and Henrich--part of one of the greatest outfields ever.

19. Stan Hack –
Another outstanding player who just misses my ballot.

20. Lou Boudreau –
6 seasons with 24+ WS; 3 seasons with 30+. A+ defensive shortstop.

21. Clark Griffith
22. Joe Gordon
23. Buzz Arlett
24. Mel Harder
25. Dobie Moore
26. Gavy Cravath
27. Leroy Matlock
28. George Burns
29. Urban Shocker
30. Spottswood Poles

Other new arrivals -

Bobby Doerr is pretty clearly a half-step behind Gordon; I’ve ranked him # 44.

Other top 10 not on my ballot:

John Beckwith –
I voted for him for many “years,” but I have become convinced that his imminent election will be a mistake. Riley makes many misstatements in his evaluation of Beckwith, and for a while I became convinced that Riley simply wasn’t credible, but I now believe that Riley is fundamentally correct in his conclusion that Beckwith’s “character deficiencies often negated his performance value.”

Our experts have verified that for three consecutive seasons during Beckwith’s peak, disputes with management led him to fail to complete the season with the team he started with:
- In June 1924, Beckwith was released by the Homestead Grays because he “was unable to fit into our organization.” This followed a game in which Beckwith, as team captain, countermanded an order for a pinch hitter from Cum Posey, the owner/manager. (Beckwith thread # 103)
- In August 1925, shortly after being demoted as manager, Beckwith left the Baltimore Black Sox in mid-season without giving notice. (# 318, 319)
- Beckwith returned to Baltimore in 1926, but the new manager, Ben Taylor, reported, “Things did not go so good after he came, and I figured it was the presence of Beckwith that made bad matters worse.” In July, Baltimore traded Beckwith to Harrisburg. (# 331)

Is this one of the most valuable players in baseball history? Not in my book. I look at value from the point of view of a team’s owner/GM asking, is this the kind of player I would want to build a championship team around? Although there is no reasonable doubt that Beckwith was one of the best hitting players in baseball’s history, and a middle infielder to boot, at least during his prime years he also was not the type of player around whom I would want to build my championship team. Baseball players are more—and sometimes less—than their statistics.

“The biggest mistake that people who try to study baseball through the stats make is… confusing them with the real event. There’s always a tremendous amount that’s left out.” — Bill James, on “Think Tank with Ben Wattenberg,” PBS, July 28, 2005.
   31. Kelly in SD Posted: August 03, 2005 at 03:44 AM (#1519261)
The Further Adventures of Kelly’s Unhealthy Fascination with Red Ruffing:

I wasted much of today doing a comparison of Ruffing and Lefty Gomez. I looked at their record against the better pitchers of the era – Ruffing had more decisions, but Gomez the better records and more consistent. I broke down Gomez’ record by opponent and by finish. Gomez was spotted similarly to Ford (but not to such a sharp degree) while Ruffing just took a regular turn against every team. Gomez started a higher percentage of his starts against 1st division teams than did Ruffing. The Yankees won a higher percentage of their games when Gomez pitched against 1st division foes as opposed to when Ruffing started. Also, was used more against specific teams than others while Ruffing pitched the same amount against everyone. Lastly, there was something very wierd about the Yankees’ records when Gomez and Ruffing left games. While the Yankees collapsed when Ruffing did not get a decision (13-25 from 1930-1942), there was only a slight collapse when Gomez left (29-19 from 1930-1942).

I am not endorsing either candidate at this point. I thought it would be helpful if we had a comparison between the two stalwart Yankee pitchers. Also, it demonstrates to me some of the problems with win shares. Since it does not take who the pitcher faced into account you get results like 1932. Gomez went 24 – 7, started against the number 2 team (Phil) 8 times and went 7 – 0 and the Yankees won the other game anyway. Gomez was credited with 17 ws and Ruffing with 26. I understand Ruffing hit a whole lot better and he allowed fewer runs, but there is a definite problem without taking one’s opponents into account.

Against other top pitchers of era.
This was not a great era for pitchers. I used the win shares list of all players with 75 win shares for the 1930s and threw in a few more pitchers. The list: Grove, Ferrell, Harder, Bridges, Lyons, Hadley, Thorton Lee, Whitehill, Bobo, Allen, MacFayden, Crowder, Pearson, Hildebrand, Rowe, Earnshaw, Auker, Feller, Newhouser, Trout, Leonard, Walberg, Faber, and Uhle.
I am not going to type the individual records in.
Gomez: 66 – 45
Ruffing: 71 – 58

Gomez had a winning record against those pitchers every year, but for 1930 (0-2) and 1935 (5-8).
Ruffing had losing records in 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1936, and 1942.

Both pitchers had an amazing year. Gomez in 1932 went 11-0 while Ruffing in 1937 went 10-1.

Isolated records, (Gomez’ and Ruffing’s records):
Pitcher:  Gomez .. Ruffing 
Grove:     6 – 5 ... 4 – 3  (both had winning records vs Grove)
Ferrell:   4 – 2 ... 5 – 3
Harder:    5 – 8 ... 4 - 5 
Bridges:   2 – 2 ... 7 – 0
Lyons:     2 – 3 ... 6 – 5
Bobo:      4 – 4 ... 5 – 3 
Rowe:      2 – 3 ... 4 – 8  
Earnshaw:  3 – 0 ... 3 – 2 
Feller:    1 – 2 ... 2 – 4  
Walberg:   3 – 1 ... 2 – 5  

Actually, against Grove, Gomez, Ruffing, and Grove have decisions as relievers and no-decisions as starters against one another. They are basically .500 against Grove.

Against Teams by Finish (1930 – 1942):
Fin .. Gomez / Ruffing
1st .. 9 – 14 (.391) / 12 – 20 (.375)
2nd .. 26 – 16 (.619) / 18 – 19 (.487)
3rd .. 24 – 17 (.585) / 23 – 17 (.575)
4th .. 40 – 13 (.755) / 38 – 19 (.667)
5th .. 27 – 12 (.692) / 38 – 13 (.745)
6th .. 32 – 12 (.727) / 30 – 17 (.638)
7th .. 29 – 16 (.644) / 37 – 17 (.685)
8th .. 25 – 7 (.781) ./ 32 – 18 (.640)

Ruffing’s advantage against 1st place teams is due to 1930 when Gomez started 6 times in his rookie year and 1940 when Gomez was injured.

I figured each pitchers’ percentage of games started against each finisher for the period.
Gomez / Ruffing
1st: .072 / .087
2nd: .132 / .101
3rd: .129 / .109
4th: .166 / .155
5th: .122 / .139
6th: .138 / .128
7th: .141 / .147
8th: .100 / .136

Again, Ruffing advantage against 1st place teams is due to 1930 and 1940.

Other notes:
Win Loss records from 1930 – 1942
Category      Gomez  Ruffing
Act Wins       189    219
Act Loss       101    120
Act %         .649   .646
W as starter   183    215
L as starter   89     115
% as starter  .673   .651
W in relief      6    4
L in relief     12    5
% in relief   .333   .444
Tm W in ND     29     13 
Tm L in ND     19     25
Tm % in ND    .604   .342
Total W        218    232
Total L        120    145
Total %       .645   .615  

Most wins against any opponent in a year: Gomez 1932 vs Phi: 7 – 0, Gomez 1934 vs Bos: 6 – 0, Gomez 1937 vs Was: 6 – 1, Ruffing 1939 vs Det: 6-1.
Worst record against any opponent in a year: Gomez 1935 vs Det: 1 – 5, Ruffing 1931 vs. Cle: 0 – 5

I hope this is interesting food for thought.

The weight of the evidence leads me to believe Ruffing is not a unique talent, does not have a significant peak, is greatly assisted by his surroundings, was the second best Yankee pitcher of the 1930s, the main difference b/t Ruffing and Gomez is Ruffing was healthier, and that Gomez was the more consistent, bigger game pitcher.
   32. Kelly in SD Posted: August 03, 2005 at 03:46 AM (#1519267)
Oh, and all information was gathered from Retrosheet. Without them, you would not have had to wade through these thousands of words about Ruffing.
   33. Sean Gilman Posted: August 03, 2005 at 08:34 AM (#1519479)

1. Joe DiMaggio (-)--Where has he gone?

2. Pete Browning (2)--If he played in the PCL in the 00s or the Negro Leagues in the 30s, would he be a HOMer by now? Same as with Suttles and Beckwith, the league translations inordinately underrate his peak. Besides, it isn’t like the AA wasn’t a major league. I’d love to see our fabulous translators take another look at the AA. (1927)

3. John Beckwith (4)--Another high peak, non-conventional major league player.(1956)

4. Charley Jones (5)--Jones, Shoeless Joe Jackson and Browning look pretty interchangeable to me. (1929)

5. Hughie Jennings (6)--Like Sam Thompson, only a slightly better peak and he was a shortstop instead of a right-fielder. (1932)

6. Cupid Childs (7)--Where has the love for Cupid gone? (1938)

7. Billy Herman (8)--I agree with those who see him as close to Cupid. I’ve got them in a dead-heat, with Cupid having the slightly better peak.

8. Tommy Leach (9)--May be the most underrated candidate out there. (1942)

9. Clark Griffith (10)--About as close to Coveleski as can be. (1942)

10. Stan Hack (11)--Another tight group with Hack, Doyle and Sisler.

11. Larry Doyle (12)--Another underrated infielder. . .(1945)

12. George Sisler (13)--That’s a nice peak.

13. Cool Papa Bell (14)--That’s a lot of career value.

14. Eppa Rixey (15)--Him too.

15. Lou Boudreau (-)--He’s got a narrow peak edge on Sewell. They, along with Williamson, Doerr, Bancroft and Gordon are a very tight group (glut?) of borderline infielders.

16. Joe Sewell (16)
17. Ed Williamson (17)
18. Jose Mendez (18)
19. Carl Mays (19)
20. Red Ruffing (20)
21. Wes Ferrell (21)
22. Bobby Doerr (-)
23. Dave Bancroft (23)
24. Joe Gordon (22)
25. Roger Bresnahan (24)
   34. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 03, 2005 at 12:49 PM (#1519540)
1. Joe DiMaggio. If you combined Joe DiMaggio and Magglio Ordonez, you'd get Joe DiMagglio Ordonez. And you'd have a worse player than Joe D. Which is really saying something when you think about it. Show me the coffee!

Speaking of coffee, Eric, no more for you! :-)
   35. andrew siegel Posted: August 03, 2005 at 01:02 PM (#1519552)
A provactive aside sparked equally by John Beckwith's eminent election and Manny Ramirez's almost-trade:

Since hitting is both the most important thing that any baseball player does and a fundamentally individual exercise, if a team has a John Beckwith or a Manny Ramirez or a Dick Allen or a Rogers Hornsby and can't figure out how to position them in the field and structure the clubhouse environment to get All-Star value out of them, the fault is with the team, not the player.
   36. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: August 03, 2005 at 01:04 PM (#1519555)

If you think that was wacky, wait until the 2019 ballot when Fred McGriffey Jr pops up....
   37. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: August 03, 2005 at 01:05 PM (#1519556)

I hadn't been taking Oms early years into account. How good were they and do we have any data on them? I would feel uneasy giving him any blind credit, or at least giving him the kind of credit (seasons with 20-25 WS or more) that would raise him significantly on my ballot. I also do nto put too much stock in career WS, career WARP, career hits, or anything like that since they can be accumulated with mediocre play (And I do understand that mediocre play is better than not playing). I am willing to listen, however.
   38. TomH Posted: August 03, 2005 at 01:22 PM (#1519568)
Andrew, I'd mostly agree, but not 100%. Suppose I was a manager and my GM drafted/traded for three of these guys, and they were almost ready to kill each other in the clubhouse. I wouldn't fault the team for trading two of them for a slighty-less talented but more stable star.
   39. andrew siegel Posted: August 03, 2005 at 02:16 PM (#1519633)
Tom H--

I think we are in rough accord--around the margins or as a tiebreaker, it is appropriate to dock a Manny or Beckwith or Hornsby a little bit b/c of the costs attendant to dealing with their crap. That is why, for example, I rate Hornsby below Collins and Morgan, who are essentially tied on the numbers but caused less problems. With regard to Beckwith, such a discount might drop him out of the conversation to be the 2nd best 3B of All-Time (which he otherwise would be in), but it doesn't drop him out of the top half of the HoM.
   40. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: August 03, 2005 at 02:21 PM (#1519640)
I think a two 20-25 WS seasons is approximately correct. Oms's first three NgL seasons convert to 144, 144, and 139 OPS+ years with 29, 31, 27 WS (per Chris and David). I think 20, then 25 WS suggests the kind of career arc that makes complete sense. Unlike with wartime credit, for instance, we have reasonable anecdotal evidence that Oms was indeed playing, and there's no suggestion that he was injured in that time. Giving him two All-Star-type years leading to to MVP-type years fits the information we have and the scope of his career.
   41. karlmagnus Posted: August 03, 2005 at 02:27 PM (#1519650)
I object to the association of Manny with Allen and Hornsby, or indeed Beckwith. Manny's flaky, but he NEVER throws tantrums or attacks anybody, and his team generally like him. A clubhouse that can't work with Manny is a clubhouse that needs to be blown up and reformed. Manny is from all accounts at worst rather like Babe Ruth without the womanising, no great philosopher but a perfectly OK guy to be around.

Beckwith was a pretty typical "tough customer" of which MLB had lots in those days, and NEL baseball probably had at least as many because there wasn't as much money sloshing around to soften the harsh realities of life and remove temptations to bootlegging and other petty crime. You might dock him a bit. but not all that much. Hornsby and Allen appear to have been considerably more difficult characters.
   42. Michael Bass Posted: August 03, 2005 at 02:36 PM (#1519665)
It's worth pointing out re: Oms that Bob Johnson's first 3 major league seasons (at ages 27-29, a year older than Oms documented career starts) were 134, 143, 130, and an examination of his minor league record found that he was largely unworthy of additional credit. Of course, Oms is projected to somewhat better than that, but my point is more along the lines that I would be very hesitant to be assigning lots of credit for undocumented pre-bigtime experience. I think something more along the lines of Dobie Moore's "don't dock him quite as much for a short career" credit is appropriate in Oms' case (though of course, Oms' documented career isn't as short of Moore's, but you get the point).
   43. SWW Posted: August 03, 2005 at 02:56 PM (#1519701)
Boy, it sure feels weird not voting for Mule Suttles.

1957 Ballot
1)Joseph Paul DiMaggio, Jr. – ”Joltin’ Joe”, “The Yankee Clipper”
The career? The hit streak? The tremendous sales of Mr. Coffee machines? Include all of it, and you get what people like to call an inner-circle candidate. And the first guy since Ruth to have more than one widely-accepted nickname. 6th on SABR Top 100. 6th on McGuire & Gormley Top 100. 6th on Maury Allen Top 100. 11th on Sporting News Top 100. 11th on Ken Souler Top 100. 13th on Bill James Top 100. New York Times Top 100. Ritter & Honig Top 100.
2)George Harold Sisler – “Gorgeous George”
I feel like there’s something here for the peak people and the career people alike. His highs are exceptional, and his lows are not so low as to be invisible, like Jennings or Hack Wilson. 33rd on Sporting News Top 100. 45th on McGuire & Gormley Top 100. 55th on SABR Top 100. 55th on Ken Shouler Top 100. 16th on Maury Allen’s Top 100. New York Times Top 100. Ritter & Honig Top 100.
3)James Thomas Bell – “Cool Papa”
I went back through the thread devoted to him, and I’m still on his bandwagon. He’s clearly not a slugger, but the high number of hits and walks combined with his legendary speed on the basepaths suggests that he’s still a significant contributor to his teams. As someone who gives much credence to career, the projected Win Shares impress me. Even the adjusted Win Shares projections impress me. I find him well ahead of the glut. 66th on Sporting News Top 100. 74th on McGuire & Gormley Top 100. 76th on Bill James Top 100. New York Times Top 100. 3rd on SABR Negro League poll. 2nd Team, 1952 Pittsburgh Courier 1952 poll.
4)Joseph Michael Medwick – “Ducky Wucky”
I do like the Win Shares, both for career and four top 10 seasons. Excellent black/gray ink. With Suttles finally out of the way, he’s the top left fielder on my ballot. 79th on Sporting News Top 100. 100th on SABR Top 100. Ritter & Honig Top 100.
5)Burleigh Arland Grimes – “Ol’ Stubblebeard”
Is it the spitball that people don’t like about him? I’ll be curious to see how Gaylord Perry fares in the voting. At least when Grimes threw junk, he did it with the permission of the rules. 54th on Maury Allen Top 100. Ritter & Honig Top 100.
6)Charles Herbert Ruffing – “Red”
Once again, Kelly from SD has given me a new way to look at a candidate, and I am given pause. With guys like Trout and Newhouser coming up soon, it looks like it’s time for a wholesale pitcher re-evaluation. 84th on Maury Allen Top 100.
7)Edgar Charles Rice – “Sam”
I think for me, the thing that distinguishes him from someone like Harry Hooper is how late his career started. I’m not giving him credit for seasons missed, but his career is unique in the late start combined with gaudy career numbers.
8)Jacob Peter Beckley – “Eagle Eye”
I place a lot of value in a lengthy, Win Share-rich career. This is why he continues to maintain his perch on my ballot. I continue to be troubled by the virtually flat line that is his career, though. Would one peak have killed you, Jake?
9)Stanley Camfield Hack
Third basemen with lots of Win Shares are hard to come by. I’m enjoying him sitting right next to Beckley. Jake gets recognition for his era, while Stan deserves a nod for his position. Five-time Top 10 NL Win Shares.
10)William Jennings Bryan Herman – “Billy”
Getting more acclaim from the electorate than I might have expected. I’m giving him a slight edge over Joe Gordon due to the higher peaks.
11)John Beckwith
I think Joe Sewell is more of a pure shortstop, but if Chris Cobb’s Win Shares are to be believed, Beckwith is a more worthy offensive force. Tied for 35th on SABR Negro League poll. 2nd Team, Pittsburgh Courier 1952 poll.
12)Eppa Rixey – “Jephtha”
Interesting to compare him with Ruffing. Very similar, except that Rixey’s career is a little more consistent, while Ruffing has some distinct peaks. His career numbers are the kind I typically like. It’s hard to hate a pitcher with 300 WS.
13)Raleigh Mackey – “Biz”
I consider him to be the best catcher currently available for our consideration. I’m giving a lot of credence to peer and expert rankings here, so your mileage may vary. 17th on SABR Negro League poll. 1st Team, Pittsburgh Courier 1952 poll.
14)Joseph Wheeler Sewell
Bouncing back on. Lots of shortstops down here at the bottom. Consistently the top shortstop in the AL for his day, with five Top 10 finishes in Win Shares. Ritter & Honig Top 100.
15)Louis Boudreau
A very cautious first ranking. The fact that his best seasons come during wartime does concern me a little. 71st on Maury Allen Top 100.

Other Top 10 Finishers
Wesley Cheek Ferrell
Love his peaks. Hate the shortness of his career. Four Top 10 AL Win Shares, which is more than Ruffing can say. The upcoming review might help.
Howard Earl Averill
A victim of a crowded ballot. He and Edd Roush have been hanging together on my ballot, and I’m guessing Averill’s slightly higher peak is what’s getting him into the top 10. They currently sit at 16 & 17 on my ranking.
Hugh Ambrose Jennings – “Ee-Yah”
I’ve been looking ahead to Sandy Koufax, and wondering what the heck I’m going to do with him. In the meantime, Jennings just looks way too peak-y to me. Five-year prime is over 70% of career. Ouch.
   44. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: August 03, 2005 at 03:05 PM (#1519724)

in the interest of full disclosure, as I've been looking more closely at Oms since reading your post, I've moved him down a couple notches in my corner OF rankings. This doesn't effect his placement on my ballot, but now instead of comparing him against Billy Williams, I see him as more like Dave Winfield or Roberto Clemente.

Also worth noting, the 125 career OPS+ for Oms will underrate him if you agree that credit should be offered for the 1919 and 1920 seasons.
   45. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: August 03, 2005 at 03:08 PM (#1519730)

I do give Moore much more credit than a nod, so you and I would be approaching Oms's case differently.
   46. andrew siegel Posted: August 03, 2005 at 03:17 PM (#1519749)
Karl is absolutely right. There are all sorts of different cases grouped together under the "great hitter but causes problems" heading. If you think about the folks on this list--Hornsby, Beckwith, Allen, Manny sure, but also Cobb, Williams, Ruth, Sheffield, Albert Belle, Lip Pike, and 20 or 30 others--each of them was a unique individual. We should be very careful not to group them together and apply a discount to their performance based on any sort of aggreggate assessment. If voters feel like they have a sense of how difficult one of these guys was in context, then sure dock them some credit. But, unless you have a sense of their particular effect on clubhouse dynamics, we probably shouldn't go there.
   47. EricC Posted: August 04, 2005 at 01:16 AM (#1521341)
1957 ballot.

1. Joe DiMaggio Jolting! An inner-circle HoMer, but, remarkably, only the 3rd greatest ML CF to date, behind Cobb and Speaker.

2. Wally Schang Tremendous career value in his long career, many seasons with > 120 OPS+ as a C. An OBP-heavy OPS, ranking 2nd all time among C in career OBP. Bresnahan and Lombardi are the only other 20th century ML catchers who belong in the discussion right now, but Bresnahan is hurt by NL weakness and career shortness and Lombardi is hurt by the WWII discount.

3. Joe Sewell 87.4 WARP3 in 1903 games is a HoM-worthy career. The number of seasons among the top N players in league demonstrate a HoM-worthy peak. Like with Schang, one's point of view on AL vs. NL league strength in the 1910s-1920s has a big effect on his standing in the all-time rank-o-meter.

4. Red Ruffing In context, one of the longest pitching careers we've seen. W/L hurt, then helped by team. W/L record may be distorted by all the years playing for the Yankees, but was still the ace of a dynasty.

5. Joe Gordon With all the lip service to giving WWII credit, how many voters are actually putting a player in their PHoM because of it? Gordon, or Dom DiMaggio, or Mickey Vernon, anyone? (Feel free to name others).

6. Stan Hack The 2nd greatest ML 3B to date, behind Baker, which is both a credit to Hack and an indication of the historic weakness of the 3B position.

7. Billy Herman Is my ballot too IF-heavy? Look at the players with the most plate apperances in the 1940s, excluding the severely war-depleted 1944 and 1945 seasons:

1.  Boudreau    5071
2.  Appling     5050
3.  Doerr       5032
4.  J. Gordon   4939
5.  B. Elliott  4931
6.  T. Williams 4671

The 1940s truly was the decade of the infielder.

8. Bobby Doerr Doerr was greater than Boudreau even before war credit. And I'm not even a Red Sox fan. :-)

9. Earl Averill Top ML CF of the 1930s.

10. Charlie Keller Peak, peak, peak, but will end up one of the few 30 WS/162 players in history not to make the HoM. Very few full-time seasons due to war and injuries, but was actually one of the most durable players when available 1940-1946. For those who thought that Greenberg, with a 158 OPS+ in 1394 games and 31.0 WS/162 was a shoo-in even without war credit, why not at least consider Keller, with a 152 OPS+ in 1170 games and a 30.0 WS/162 (yes, his war year stats are inflated)?

11. Tommy Bridges 126 ERA+ in the 1930-1943 AL.

12. Cool Papa Bell Long career, low peak, like Sam Rice, but with outstanding speed.

13. Lefty Gomez With "dominant season" pitcher bonuses, his 2 Cy-Young type seasons give him a boost. I still think that Ruffing was the ace of the Yankees, not Gomez.

14. Lou Boudreau Doesn't come out as high as I would have thought.

15. Jose Mendez Evidence of a HoM worthy peak.

Joe Medwick Played like an inner-circle HoMer for 3 years, but like a non HoMer the rest of his career, ending up as a borderline candidate.

Rixey and Ferrell were both very good, and I like pitchers, so I regret not having room for them on my ballot.

Mackey was one of the best NeL catchers, but, like Medwick, was squeezed off my ballot this year.

Jennings had a great peak, putting him in the Sisler/Medwick category of players that have a good argument, but don't make it to the top 15 in my system.

The comps to Beckwith on post #82 in the HOF 2006 NeL election thread are borderline.
   48. Rick A. Posted: August 04, 2005 at 01:58 AM (#1521531)
Joe DiMaggio
Mule Suttles

1957 Ballot
1.Joe DiMaggio – Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio? Why, to the HOM of course. Elected PHOM in 1957
2.Charley Jones – Truly great hitter who missed 2 years in his prime. Elected PHOM in 1921.
3.Pete Browning – Great hitter. Elected PHOM in 1925
4.Hughie Jennings – Re-evaluated 1890’s infielders since they seemed to get beat up during their playing days. Elected PHOM in 1938
5.Dobie Moore – Impressive peak. Giving him more credit for army years. 10+ year prime at important position. Elected PHOM in 1939.
6.Biz Mackey – Took another look at Mackey and realized that we’re underrating him. Yes, he wasn’t as great a hitter as we thought. Yes, he has a kind of Sisleresque career shape. However, he has a ton of career value, very good prime value and was an A+ defensive catcher. That adds up to a HOMer to me. Elected PHOM in 1956.
7.John Beckwith – Very good hitter. New info on him moves him high on my ballot. Elected 1940.
8.Stan Hack – Was a fan of his since I first heard of him. Very close to Heinie Groh, even with war discount. Better than Pie Traynor.
9.Jose Mendez – Looking at the Negro League pitchers thread shows I may be underrating him. Jumps over Averill. Elected PHOM in 1942.
10.Cupid Childs – Good hitter. Still in line to be a PHOM.
11.Vic Willis – Very good pitcher. Moves up when compared to Faber and Rixey.
12.Ed Williamson – He’s back. I was talked into the idea that I overestimated him in the past, but decided I was right the first time.
13.Billy Herman – Looks like I fell for the shiny new toy. Upon closer look, not much difference between Childs, Monroe, and Hack.
14.Earl Averill - Decided to give minor league credit.
15.Joe Medwick – Better peak and prime than Johnson.

Required Disclosures
Wes Ferrell and Red Ruffing Both just miss my ballot. Ferrell may jump over Medwick and/or Averill if I decide I may be undervaluing pitchers.

New Candidates
Lou Boudreau Very good candidate, but not much difference between Boudreau, Gordon and Doerr.
Bobby Doerr Not as good as Boudreau
Charlie Keller Tough candidate to place. Strong peak, but career is too short and he also gets a wartime discount. Sisler was better.

Off the ballot
16-20 Grimes, Ferrell, Ruffing, Monroe, Rixey
21-25 Duffy, Bell, Johnson, Sisler, Roush
26-30 Schang, Oms, McGraw, Boudreau, Gordon
31-35 Leach, Dean, Redding, Bresnahan, Cravath
36-40 Tiernan, Bond, Keller, Poles, Cooper
41-45 Waddell, Van Haltren, Traynor, Doyle, Sewell
46-50 Mays, Taylor, Doerr, Fournier, Griffith
   49. Rick A. Posted: August 04, 2005 at 02:43 AM (#1521701)
A clubhouse that can't work with Manny is a clubhouse that needs to be blown up and reformed.

I hate it when players like Manny Ramirez and Albert Belle blow up their clubhouses. :)
   50. Dolf Lucky Posted: August 04, 2005 at 05:02 PM (#1522575)
1 (-)Joe DiMaggio--Overrated historically, but the class of this ballot.

2 (2)Ernie Lombardi--17 seasons, 125 OPS+, 8 times in the top 10 in slugging pct. Best hitter on the pennant winning teams of Cincy. He's not Dickey-good, but he's up there.

3 (-)Lou Boudreau--If 1948 never happened, I could see keeping him down due to him having big years during the war, but it's not like he couldn't play. Big bat, with a bigger glove.

4 (3)Billy Herman--Similar career and peak to Dickey, according to WARP.

5 (4)Bucky Walters--Clearly peak heavy, as he didn't even reach 200 wins. Best player in baseball in 1939/1940? Hitting matters…

6 (6)Chuck Klein--Much better peak than anyone in the OF glut. Plus he was dominant in Earl Weaver Baseball.

7 (5)Red Ruffing--Pretty clearly the best pure pitcher available.

8 (-)Bobby Doerr--Presents a relatively clean comparison to Boudreau: Lower OPS+, weaker glove, less important position. Do 1000 extra plate appearance make up for that? Not in this case.

9 (7)Joe Medwick--He had the talent, but I'm not sure he played long enough to ever get in to the HoM

10 (8)Dizzy Dean--Basically, he's Hughie Jennings as a pitcher. I'm giving pitchers some extra weight on the ballot these days, so that gets us to 4th for now. I think he has to rank above Waddell, who I'm a big fan of.

11 (9)Wes Ferrell--More career WARP than, say, Eppa Rixey, and the peak ain't even close.

12 (10)Stan Hack--This one surprised me. I can't say I knew much about him, but I don't see any reason to keep him off the ballot, especially coming from such a historically weak position. The numbers show him as Heinie Groh-lite.

13 (12)Rube Waddell--In a 9 year stretch from 1900 to 1908, Waddell led the league in K/IP 8 times. Finished 2nd the other time. New WARP scores boost his peak to a near Jennings level. High black ink totals. In other words--dominant.

14 (13)George Sisler--Not quite as dominant as I had thought, but that peak stacks relatively high.

15 (11)Joe Gordon--One of the great 'what-if' stories. I give him credit for his war years, but my suspicion is that if there was no war, he'd have been close to a no-brainer.

Dropping out: Joe Sewell, John Beckwith

Top 10 omissions: With Jennings and Beckwith, I think there are too many available infielder candidates that had the entire package (hit/field/peak/career). Both could make it on to my ballot if they're not elected first, but the glut is growing. Averill does not stand out at all to me. Indistinguishable from several OF candidates.
   51. Jim Sp Posted: August 04, 2005 at 10:37 PM (#1523948)
I’m having second thoughts about dropping Schang and Lombardi, but for now they stay off the ballot. I’m also a little uneasy about how high I have Cool Papa and Mackey as well. 1958 will be quite an election.

DiMaggio/Boudreau 1 and 2, Doerr #9. Keller around #50, great peak but not enough career.

Rixey, Waddell, Cravath, Monroe, Schang, Bresnahan, Griffith, Joss, Jose Mendez, and Welch are in my PHoM but off my ballot.

1)DiMaggio--No doubt.
2)Boudreau--Once again, I love those shortstops who can hit.
3)Beckwith-- A great hitter, he played a considerable amount at the difficult end of the defensive spectrum. I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on his “unusual circumstances”. His selection as manager indicates to me that his intangibles weren’t all negative. He made my PHoM in 1940 over Coveleski and Faber.
4)Averill--Looks like a HoMer to me even without PCL credit, but I do give him some PCL credit as he was obviously major league quality before arriving in the majors. Compare him to Goslin: Averill has a higher OPS+ (133/128), and is an A+ CF vs. a C+ LF. Goslin has career length, mostly because Averill plays in the PCL for a while.
5)Mackey--#2 on my 1949 prelim, but more data on his hitting has dropped him to here.
6)Cool Papa Bell--If Max Carey is in, Cool Papa should be too.
7)Sewell--109 OPS+, reasonably long career, good shortstop (A- Win Shares). Yes, I am allowing for his switch to 3B at the end of his career.
9)Doerr--Belongs somewhere between here and the end of the ballot.
10)Bob Johnson--A very underrated player. Usually I'm a WS guy but this time I think Warp has it right.
11)Billy Herman-- I’m still perplexed trying to figure out his career relative to the defensive spectrum shift at 2B. He looks good compared to modern 2B, not so great compared to early lively ball 2B. Gets two years war credit, that helps too.
12)Doyle— His hitting is legitimately outstanding, he played 2nd base, and a C+ defender by Win Shares. 126 career OPS+, compare to contemporary George Cutshaw, who was a regular 2B for 11 years with an OPS+ of 86. #19 all time in innings at 2B. Regularly in the 2B defensive Win Shares leaders, WS Gold Glove in 1917. Top 10 in Win Shares 1909-12, 1915.
13)Stan Hack--His time will come, I think. I like him better than Groh, who I voted for.
14)GordonDoerr, Gordon, Herman, and Doyle are basically even.
15)Beckley— Behind the big 3, much better than other dead-ball 1B. Win Shares best fielder at 1B in 1893, 1895, 1899, and 1900. Add in 2930 hits, with power and walks. No peak but a lot of consistent production, we’re not talking about Ed Kranepool here.

Ruffing#30, he’s HoVG but I don’t like him as much as the consensus.
Hughie Jennings—impressive peak, not enough career.
Ferrell—one of the top 100 pitchers of all time, but not on my ballot currently.
   52. Chris Cobb Posted: August 05, 2005 at 12:57 AM (#1524222)
1957 Ballot

The Yankee Clipper sails into the HoM this year, while Keller, Boudreau, and Doerr all fall just short of what is still a very strong ballot.

1. Joe Dimaggio (n/e). Easy #1. With war credit, he’s at about #25 all-time as of 1957.
2. John Beckwith (3). I hope the recent discussion has clarified the issues surrounding his character and its effect on his playing record and playing value. My view is that he should be evaluated on the basis of his on-the-field accomplishments, and my analysis of those accomplishments places him here. He was a great hitter who was able to handle play at a difficult defensive position.
3. Clark Griffith (4). Best candidate available from the underrepresented and underrated 1890s. Without contraction, there’d be no questions about his career length, as he would have two more major-league seasons in 1892 and 1893. Superior to several elected pitchers by virtually every measure. I hope to see him elected in the 1960s.
4. Hughie Jennings (5). The greatness of his peak will not diminish with time. Would represent 1890s well.
5. Eppa Rixey (6). Long, solidly above-average career. Runner-up in 1942. he may not be elected until the early 1960s. Better than Ruffing, though it’s close.
6. Wes Ferrell (8). WARP rates him as a clear HoMer, nearly as valuable as Grove during his 9-year prime. WS rates him less highly. My analysis is closer to WARP. Ferrell has a decent shot at being the first twentieth-century pitcher not elected to the HoF to be elected to the HoM. (Will Bert Blyleven be the second?)
7.Billy Herman (12). A player about whom I knew nothing when this project began, but he was a very fine player. A lot like Willie Wells, actually, as he combined good offense and good defense in a long career, but he was a bit behind Wells in both peak and length.
8.Alejandro Oms (n/r). A great player in the 1920s, his run of solid to border-line MVP seasons is nearly a match for Averill’s, and he has much more value outside of his prime. His career tailed after his 1930 (injury?) season, but he remained a good hitter with gradually decreasing playing time in my projections. I think he’s the best outfield candidate eligible.
9. Stan Hack. (13) The best major-league third baseman between Heinie Groh and Eddie Mathews. Great plate discipline, acceptable defense. It surprises me that he’s not receiving more support.
10. Red Ruffing. (14) Lands just between Eppa Rixey and Burleigh Grimes among the “innings-eater” pitching candidates. No great peak, but he had a lot of very good years for the Yankees. His hitting makes the difference between on-ballot and buried deep in the backlog.
11. Biz Mackey (15). A solid candidate and I hope an eventual HoMer. A stronger candidate than Schang or Bresnahan because of his defensive value (supported by both his reputation and his 1928 statistics), but overall he’s not in the class of Harnett, Dickey, or Cochrane. This placement includes credit for 1932 – I assume that if he had been in the majors, he would not have skipped a season to tour in Japan. I think the gaps in Mackey’s record and the likelihood that his statistics in the mid-1930s understate his value make it appropriate to rank him on the high side of what his current numbers show.
12. Edd Roush (10). Slips a little bit in the reevaluation of outfielders, but he was getting less of a bonus than Van Haltren and Leach, and was the best hitter of the three, so he retains his ballot spot.
13. George Sisler (16). Rises back up onto the ballot; his peak was truly outstanding, and long enough to matter a lot in my assessment of him.
14. Gavvy Cravath. (24) Makes my ballot for the first time, as I re-sort my outfielders and my 1910s rankings. In the 1910s rankings, Cravath replaces Doyle as the top candidate still unelected. Given that I had no support from WARP, I could no longer justify ranking Larry Doyle above where win shares put him in my system. He drops significantly, and Cravath jumps to the ballot.
15. Burleigh Grimes (18). My willingness to support National League stars from the teens and twenties is separating me from the consensus a bit, I think, as Grimes joins Rixey, Roush, and Cravath as representatives of that era on my ballot. Consideration of his batting value makes me agree with those who don’t see a whole lot of difference between him and Rixey, but that difference now amounts to 10 ballot spots.

Consensus top-10 returning players not on my ballot:

Earl Averill. See #17 below
Joe Medwick. See #25 below
   53. Chris Cobb Posted: August 05, 2005 at 12:59 AM (#1524225)

16. Joe Gordon (20). With appropriate WWII credit, Gordon looks like the best of the 1940s borderline infielder group, at least by a win-shares based evaluation. He looks similar to Doyle, Childs, and Sewell, but he places higher in relation to his contemporaries than they do, so he ranks higher. Recognition that he, Boudreau, and Doerr were among the top 20-22 players of their era moves Gordon up from last year, and brings them onto the ballot about where Gordon ranked last year.
17. Earl Averill (17). I give him one season of PCL credit, which puts him clearly ahead of Medwick. He’ll probably get back on my ballot before he gets elected.
18. Charlie Keller (n/e). A better peak that Medwick’s, but a very short career keeps him off the ballot for now.
19. Jose Mendez. (18) A player most deserving of a fresh analysis and renewed attention.
20. Dick Redding. (19) Still paired with Mendez.
21. Buzz Arlett. (21) Pitching credit brings Arlett near my ballot.
22. Rube Waddell (22). Folks who have been discussing Joss in relation to Koufax and Dean on the relative ERA+ and IP scales should be considering Waddell in that conversation as well. Without commenting yet on Koufax, Waddell seems well ahead of Joss and Dean.
23. Lou Boudreau (n/e). Clearly a top player at his best; his ranking is hurt by his short career and WWII discounts. I don’t oppose his election at some point, but I’m not an advocate for it, either.
24. Bobby Doerr (n/e). Not quite the impact player Boudreau was, but more consistent over the course of his career.
25. Joe Medwick. (23). Overrated by the electorate, and I urge caution on him. I lean more toward the WARP view of him as good teams/pythagorean win share bonuses inflate his win share totals quite a bit. We have a number of outfield candidates with better records whom voters seem reluctant to support because of uncertainty about the value of their play outside of the majors: Oms, Cravath, Averill and Arlett deserve more support than they have received and should be ahead of Medwick in the election queue. I’ll have my work cut out for me in 1958, I fear.
26. Tommy Leach (24). Very fine career value, but not quite enough peak to be clearly electable.
27. George Van Haltren (25). His case is very similar to Leach’s.
28. Cool Papa Bell (26). Reconsideration of 1933-1936 MLEs moves him past Poles and Maranville. Note to self: Bell really needs a new study now that a lot more MeL data is available.
29. Bill Byrd (27). Stongly resembles Burleigh Grimes and Carl Mays, I believe. A little better than Mays but not as good as Grimes, Like them, Byrd was a good hitter; he often played in the outfield when he wasn’t pitching. Like Grimes, he was a spitball/junkball pitcher. He enters the ballot with contemporary Mel Harder, whom he betters, in my view, by a small amount, mostly on peak.
30. Rabbit Maranville. (28) His defensive value and his career length deserve respect.
31. Leroy Matlock (29). Finally have MLEs for Matlock (he was first eligible in 1948). He’s a very fine pitcher, possibly in the top 10 NeL pitchers all time, with a truly outstanding peak 1933-37, but not quite enough career value to reach my ballot. I think it’s very likely that he was notably better than Hilton Smith. He was apparently quiet and effective like Hilton, but he didn’t have the right teammates and he died just as interest in the Negro Leagues was reviving, so he didn’t get consideration for the HoF. I don’t think he makes the HoM, though peak voters ought to give him a long look, but he’s deserving of being better known than he was. I need to re-do his MLEs for 1937 in light of fuller information about his play in Santo Domingo.
32. Mel Harder. (30). The historic link between Wes Ferrell and Bob Feller. Harder was better than I thought. He has decent career length (over 3400 innings) and a very nice peak in the mid-1930s. Very similar to Carl Mays, but slightly better, although not nearly so well-rounded a player.
33. Larry Doyle (31). Dropped significantly in 1956 reevalution of remaining candidates from the 1910s
34. Spotswood Poles . (32) Another top NeL candidate from the teens who could use another look.
35. Carl Mays. (33) Wes Ferrell lite.
36. Urban Shocker. (34) Someday I’ll take up his cause. Another very well-rounded ballplayer.
37. Mickey Welch. (35) Doesn’t make my ballot now, but could again. This ballot is unbelievably deep.
38. Hugh Duffy. (36) Another guy whom I think of as “just off-ballot” who is now nearly down to 40 in the rankings. Youch!
39. Jimmy Ryan
40. Roger Bresnahan
41. Wally Schang
42. Cupid Childs
43. Bucky Walters
44. George Scales
45. Dobie Moore
46. Charley Jones
47. Ben Taylor
48. Jake Beckley
49. Joe Sewell
50. Dick Lundy
51. Waite Hoyt
52. Herman Long
53. Wilbur Cooper
54. Lave Cross
55. Kiki Cuyler
56. Harry Hooper
57. Bobby Veach
58. Fielder Jones
59. Dolf Luque
60. John McGraw
61. Ed Williamson
62. Tommy Bond
63. Jim McCormick
64. Bob Johnson
65. George J. Burns
66. Jack Fournier
67. Bruce Petway
68. Bill Monroe
69. Dizzy Dean
70. Babe Adams
71. Mike Tiernan
72. Pete Browning
73. Sam Rice
74. Dave Bancroft
75. Frank Chance
76. Tony Mullane
77. Ed Konetchy
78. Addie Joss
79. Nip Winters
80. Wally Berger
   54. DavidFoss Posted: August 05, 2005 at 04:36 AM (#1524586)
Last year saw the Yankees and Dodgers is the World Series again for the sixth time in ten years (yawn) with the Yankees winning for the fifth time in those matchups and victories over the Phillies and Giants in that same span make it 7/10 for the Bronx Bombers.

Hanging it up last year were Jackie Robinson, Bob Feller, Monte Irvin, Al Rosen, Hank Thompson and Phil Rizzuto.

Filling the gap is one of the best crops of young hitters ever. Check out MLB's top six under 25 by RCAA:

1. Mantle(24)   -122
2. Kaline(21)   -49
3. Mays(25)     -44
4. Mathews(24)  -43
5. Aaron(22)    -39
6. FRobinson(20)-37

Also note that Banks(25) is 9th in an off year. Colavito(22) and KBoyer(25) are 11th & 12th. Also seeing playing time are Aparicio(22), Mazeroski(19), BRobinson(19), Killebrew(20), Clemente(21), Flood(18). Looks like years of future star power!

1957 Ballot

1. Joe Dimaggio (ne) -- The Yankee Clipper. Retired at #5 on the all-time home run list despite missing three years to WWII, one year to the PCL, playing in a park that was 450+ to RCF & CF and hanging 'em up at age 36. He could field that giant outfield pretty well as well.
2. John Beckwith (1) -- The more SS-3B types who become eligible without Beckwith's hitting numbers, the more impressed I am. Owen Wilson's portrayal of him in the Wedding Crashers was a lot more subdued that I was expecting after reading his thread.
3. Hughie Jennings (3) -- Basically the best player in baseball for five years running, with great durability in his peak years. Not much outside that peak, though, or he would have been inducted long ago. Imagine Boudreau with 3-4 more 1948's.
4. Clark Griffith (4) -- The plethora of borderline live-ball pitchers is making me think we may have forgotten about Clark, who pitched well in an even livelier era. Solid numbers in an underrepresented era.
5. Larry Doyle (6) -- I think the electorate is underrating him, his support is waning, but still has a core group of followers. Fine second baseman for great Giants teams. Solid peak. Fielding was mediocre, but not as horrific as WARP suggests.
6. Cupid Childs (7) -- Very comparable to Doyle. OPS+ is OBP heavy. Fielding was good, but not A-level.
7. Billy "Don't Call Me Babe" Herman (8) -- Dropped him below Doyle/Childs this week to be cautious. Impressive Win Shares numbers look a lot like Doyle/Childs'. A 'B+' defender as the position is getting tougher. Eligible before Gordon/Doerr.
8. Biz Mackey (10) -- Lets not forget about Biz! Wasn't the hitter I had previously thought, but I have a soft sport for catchers. Giving him credit for his year in overseas and his rate numbers are not bad if you cut them off in the late-1930s or so. Its not fair that his older days are weighing his rates down.
9. Dick Redding (9) -- 2nd best fastball of the 10's according to Neyer/James.
10. Wes Ferrell (11) -- Tossing in some love for one of the last of the great hitting pitchers. Very nice peak, but not much else. If his arm would have held out a couple of more years, he'd have a much easier case. That could be said of quite a few pitchers, though.
11. John McGraw (12) -- Welcome back, Mack. 135 OPS+ is aided by the fact that its OBP heavy. In fact, his OBP is 3rd all time. Playing time issues keeping him out of the HOM so far...
12. Lou Boudreau (ne) -- Good enough to make my ballot which says something. Short-ish career and was Jenningsian for one year instead of five. Might be a bit conservative with him this week, but I'm certain I have him below Beckwith (his competition at the top of the backlog).
13. Stan Hack (13) -- Fine OBP man for pennant-winning Cubs teams. 3B is underrepresented and Hack would still has 300 WS after applying a wartime discount (with 3 30+ WS seasons).
14. Gavvy Cravath (14) -- Cravath has a monster peak that is holding up against new eligibles.
15. Joe Gordon (15) -- Tossing some love out for the fine 2B for some great Yankees/Indians clubs. Short career has me worried, but a little war credit puts him on the ballot instead of Ruffing.


Medwick -- I'm tough on corner outfielders.
Averill -- I'm tough on outfielders, too. Career not quite long enough or peaky enough, even with a year of PCL credit. In the upper teens, will return to my ballot in a few years.
Ruffing -- I could go either way with Red. He's also in the upper teens. Got bumped off by Gordon a couple of years ago.
   55. Patrick W Posted: August 05, 2005 at 05:00 AM (#1524600)
Hearing about the new HOF committee was great news last week. However it really won’t change my thinking that - when this project is complete (i.e. up-to-date) - it won’t matter to me who’s in/out in Cooperstown.

1. Joe DiMaggio (n/a), N.Y.(A), CF (’36-’51) (1957) – He’s the 20th best player to date in my system, but only the 5th best CF (Oscar, Ty, Tris, Turkey). He should also be the worst player to date to score 100% in the balloting.
2. John Beckwith (5), Bkn (--), SS / 3B (’19-’34) (1940) – With all the infielders building up on the ballot, I have concerns about how accurately I’m rating them vs. the other positions (esp. in terms of fielding value). Amongst the 2B, 3B and SS, I think I know Beckwith was the best with the bat. Since I’ve probably been underrating his fielding as well, I have more confidence in giving Beckwith the bonus over Boudreau.
3. Lou Boudreau (n/a), Clev. (A), SS (’39-’51) (1957) – His prime rates are a powerful argument in his favor. WARP3 has appropriately discounted for his war seasons, and he still ranks in the top 25% of HOMer’s for his 5 best & 10 best seasons. His fielding rates at short are almost as good as Ozzie’s.
4. Billy Herman (3), Chic. – Bkn. (N), 2B (’32-’46) (1956) – His fielding value takes a big hit during the difficulty adjustment in WARP, a much larger percentage drop than Doerr’s. Needs further review, but this (as well as Lou’s batting advantage) allows Boudreau to start out above Herman on the ballot.
--. Buck Leonard, Hmstd. (--), 1B (‘34-‘48)
--. Ray Brown, Hmstd. (--) SP (’31-’49)
5. Red Ruffing (4), N.Y. (A) SP (’25-’47) (1955) – Looks as good as Ted Lyons did.
--. Red Faber, Chic. (A), SP (’14-’33) –
6. Bobby Doerr (n/a), Bost. (A), 2B (’37-’51) – Reaches Boudreau’s career value but takes about 1700 more AB’s (War Adj. Up) to do so. Boudreau’s peak is once again the difference.
7. Biz Mackey (6), Hilldale (--), C / 3B (’20-’41) – He’ll make it in on my ballot someday, but the NeL competition has gotten very tough, as seen above.
8. Joe Gordon (7), N.Y. (A), SS (’38-’50) – I have Sewell being slightly better than Gordon with the glove, and Gordon with every other advantage between the two. It’s a slight advantage in most cases, and it’s not enough to rank Gordon any higher on the ballot than here.
9. Bucky Walters (8), Cinc. – Phila. (N) SP (’33-’47) – I’m having a hard time seeing why I have Faber higher than Bucky right now. Tommy Bridges and Claude Passeau are wondering why also.
10. Joe Sewell (9), Clev. (A), SS / 3B (’20-’33) (1939) – The great defense of Sewell trumps the modest offense advantage of Hack.
11. Bob Johnson (10), Phila. (A), LF (’33-’45) – Late start to his career, but every season a quality one, and 0.304 EQA always looks good on the resume.
12. Stan Hack (11), Chic. (N), 3B (’32-’47) – Totally deserving of appearing on my ballot if Groh still theoretically appears on it.
13. Jake Beckley (12), Pitt. – Cinc.(N), 1B (’88-’07) (1929) – Jake can thank Ducky Wucky for my reanalysis of all the MLB IF’s and OF’s for this ballot.
--. Heinie Groh, Cinc. (N), 3B (’12-’27) –
14. Joe Medwick (13), St.L (N), LF (’32-’47) – More productive hitter than VH, but in a shorter career. Result is close to a tie in my scorebook. Better peak for Ducky gets the tiebreak.
15. George Van Haltren (14), NY(N), CF / LF (’87-’03) (1926) – You want 1890’s HOMers? We got your 1890’s HOMers right here! Curious how far he’ll drop off the ballot before he begins to rise again.

Hughie Jennings – Not enough peak to equal all the others’ career values.
Earl Averill – I can’t see Averill making the ballot until I can find room for Charlie Keller first. In reality, they both might end up timeline casualties of the HOM despite numbers that say they are among the top 210+ players of all-time.

Jennings and Averill were in last year’s top ten, but not in my top 15 this year. Anyone else in favor of limiting the explanation rule to players who make more than 60% of the electorates’ ballots?
   56. Adam Schafer Posted: August 05, 2005 at 06:52 AM (#1524664)
New ballot with no recycled comments. A hard drive failure two weeks ago made me miss the last ballot, only the 2nd one I've ever missed. Completely overhauled my ballot.

1. Joe DiMaggio - A no brainer

2. Billy Herman - His peak isn't outstanding, but very very adequate. His career value, especially being a 2nd basemen pushes him this high on my ballot.

3. Mickey Welch - 300 wins should not be an automatic stat to get you in. Everyone says wins were easier to come by back then. Pitchers were used more, and thus able to win more. Wow, I guess the pitchers back then weren't aware of this since not many of them won 300 games. Welch may have pitched against worst teams...wasn't Welch and Keefe (who got elected) on the same team pitching against the same people for quite awhile? Top 10 pitcher in almost all major pitching categories from 1880-1889. Almost was never "the" best, but was consistently one of the best over and over.

4. Lou Boudreau - I love a good hitting shortstop. I love his 1948 year. I love the fact that he didn't strikeout much, which is one of the things I love about Sewell.

5. John Beckwith - Looks like this just might be his year. I've always rated him low, but did a lot of reading and thinking on him while I was overhauling this ballot.

6. Stan Hack - I feel that I've really underrated him.

7. Joe Medwick - Some really big impressive years in the first half of his career. Enough career value for me to push him up this high on my ballot.

8. Bobby Doerr - Good hitting 2nd baseman.

9. Wes Ferrell - Good peak, and just enough career to make me like him

10. Biz Mackey - I've always felt he was a star. He wasn't Josh Gibson, but he was still one stud of a catcher.

11. George Sisler - Even his bad years were still really darn good

12. Red Ruffing - Did he pitch for good teams? Absolutely. That's not his fault.

13. Burleigh Grimes - Between 1918-1931 he was pretty durable. A couple bad seasons mixed in, but all in all a dependable pitcher and I'm a career type of guy for the most part.

14. Joe Sewell - You couldn't strike the guy out! I absolutely love that about his career.

15. Clark Griffith - Career...wonderful career. If he hadn't of pitched after 1903 I bet people would look at him differently.

Averill, Beckley, Waddell, Schang and Bresnahan are all just off of my ballot right now
   57. Ken Fischer Posted: August 05, 2005 at 11:13 AM (#1524733)
1956 Ballot

Here's my ballot...before the weekend...can you believe it...actually I had to get it in now because I drive off from Illinois to Florida with a 24 foot U-Haul in a couple of hours. Going to new life...and hopefully more time for the HOM.

I re-worked things quite a bit this week. Herman, Beckwith and Jennings got bumped up.

1-Joe DiMaggio 387 WS
Joe didn’t seem like a nice guy…but he sure could play ball.

2-Billy Herman 298 WS
Maybe overshadowed by a couple of other great second baseman during his 15 seasons but had a great career. Herman also missed a couple of seasons during the war years. He made a big difference when he joined the Dodgers early in ’41.

3-George Van Haltren 344 WS
8 of Van’s top 10 similar batters are in the other hall. I consider Van at the top of the list of the many worthy outfielders with long credentials waiting to get in the HOM.

4-Biz Mackey
It seems like Biz is not getting a fair shake from the voters. He’s one of the top three catchers in most Negro League depth charts…along with Gibson & Santop. Biz taught Campy how to play the position so he must’ve been something to watch.

5-John Beckwith
Beckwith moves up my chart after further review. I read somewhere he once hit four HRs in a game at Crosley Field. He played for at least 13 teams. Read a lot about how he was a nasty guy…but he did manage for awhile…some boss didn’t think he was all bad.

6-Lou Boudreau 277 WS
Hurt by timing (war years)…but put it all together as a playing-manager.

7-Hughie Jennings 214 WS
He should make it in pretty soon. Probably the #3 SS of the 90s after Davis & Dahlen.

8-Mickey Welch 354 WS
His win shares numbers show he was more than just the 1885 season. McCormick, Mullane and Mathews also deserve another look from the 19th Century.

9-Cool Papa Bell
It appears many HOM voters think Bell is overrated. I’m not so sure. He was the premier lead-off man of his era. Bell is considered by some to be the fastest man to ever play baseball. That has to count for something.

10-Joe Gordon 242 WS
I’m a big Gordon fan. James made a great case that Gordon & Stephens should be honored ahead of Rizzuto and Doerr. Yes…it was a short career but he made the most of his time….first as a Yank and then as an Indian.

11-Wally Schang 245 WS
Schang belongs in a special group of most overlooked ballplayers…Schang, Dahlen, B. Mathews, Start, Pike, Barnes, B. Johnson, etc. He played for several flag winners. Schang had great plate discipline. At the age of 39 he led the AL in HBP.

12-Red Ruffing 322 WS
I took another look at Red. I moved him up a few notches.

13-Pete Browning 225 WS
Pete does have a down side…but is getting a raw deal due to his prime being in the AA. He was a key player relied on by his teammates for most of his career. Grey Ink looks favorable. The Players League year removes the AA discount as an obstacle for me.

14-Bobby Doerr 281 WS
Gordon was better…but he still was one of the best. A glue for the great 40’s Red Sox teams.

15-Joe Medwick 312 WS
I decided there had to be room for the last NL triple crown winner in my top 15.

I'm still trying to figure out Stan Hack. I may be misjudging him because of his era. I'll take a hard look at him next time.
   58. TomH Posted: August 05, 2005 at 01:44 PM (#1524813)
1957 Ballot
Review of Hanrahan’s value system: career value with a fairly high replacement level (slightly below average). Something like WARP3 minus 2.5 wins per full year, or WS minus 12 per year adjusted for league quality, or OPS+ over 95 adjusted for defense and timeline and speed. No real credit for “peak”. Some subjective estimating of ability across time and place.

(x) indicates where I voted for them last
[y] indicates their previous consensus rank

Obviously the big debate this ballot is whether to elect Boom Boom. I understand those who have him right behind DiMaggio, and I also sympathize with those like Brent who have him off-ballot. Some day in heaven I will enjoy having things explained to me that I goofed on in this life; maybe (after the first million years go by) some 3-D inside-the-NeL footage will be there to educate me better on this issue.

Oh, and we need more pitchers, who on my ballot are ranked 2, 4, 7, 11 (and 16) this week.

1-Joe DiMaggio {new}
"I want him on my side"
Ranks eleventh overall on my list to date, and #26 all-time. Grossly overrated by the “style and grace and count the ringgzz” group, but very under-rated by the stats-only types. Yankee Stadium and WWII killed his numbers, and his impact on pennant races was huge.
2-Clark Griffith (5) [13]
Vastly, vastly underrated by conventional stats. Check out the WAT!
3-Billy Herman (4) [4]
Well-rounded stud. War credit gets him above the other infielders.
4-Wes Ferrell (7) [10]
Career ERA of 4.04, but compares well to the league/park average ERA of 4.72. Then add in the huge bat. Ruffing with much more peak, somewhat less career.
5-Stan Hack (6) [5]
A real shame that Pie Traynor is way more famous than the Hackster.
6-Lou Boudreau {new}
A small bonus for the pennant-winning homer in 1948. Even if was foul (right, karlmagnus?)
7-Bucky Walters (9) [27]
Hidden greatness? Faced strong opponents, didn’t have many gold glovers behind him, pitched real well and hit well too. Take your time, guys, but don’t worry, you’ll warm to him eventually :)
8-Joe Sewell (10) [20]
What is there NOT to like about him? He hit great for a shortstop, for any time period, not just his. He fielded great too.
9-John Beckwith (11) [3]
He looks to me like the quality (defense and offense) of Killebrew. But: if I were a GM and had to draft one guy at a young age to play his career (I hope) on my team, I would be wary.
10-George Van Haltren (12) [17]
Hit. Ran. Played D. Pitched. Long career. Played in strong and under-represented 1890s.
11-Red Ruffing (8) [7]
Eppa Rixey, plus he could hit. Nice World Series stats. I dinged him this ballot as I considered his great teammates and their help to his record.
12-Cool Papa Bell (13) [16]
If I envision the basestealing of Vince Coleman with the CF ability of a Willie Mays, Bell comes out as a HoMer, even with a mediocre bat. And that’s what his rep makes him out to be.
13-Biz Mackey (14) [12]
Schang looks just as good. But Mackey’s fine rep and career length puts him here, above Roger B, with whom he looks comparable if you end Mackey’s career in 1932. Too many people thought Mackey was too good to leave him off my ballot.
14-John McGraw (15) [43]
The prime of Hughie Jennings. Outstanding RCAP. HoM is short of 3Bmen and 1890s infielders. Brilliant tactician.
15-Earl Averill (off) [9]
A bit of credit for his PCL yrs. Compared to GVH, hit a bit better, fielded about the same, slightly shorter career, didn’t pitch.

Bobby Doerr joins the 2B clog. If we had a expanded our ballot to 18 more men, I would have another 5 second basemen in the mix.

Oms: while I really appreciate the work done to dig up his merits from the dusty shelf, it sure would be nice if he had gotten more luv from his contemporaries. Right now I have him pegged between #10 (GVH) and above the Roush/Duffy/Ryan group at 40ish.

Required Disclosures:
Joe Medwick [6] … career is a lot like Indian Bob, who finished 37th! Do we send him to the HoM based on one triple crown year? If elected, he would be my lowest-ranked honoree to date. I’ll have much more to say about Ducky as we head into the 1960s.
Hughie Jennings [8] ….peak only, and my system doesn’t credit peak as much

Others in my top 37:
Eppa Rixey ……..115 ERA+ in massive amount of innings, in probably the weaker league. Would we elect a guy with a 110ish ERA+ and no stick? He is at #16 this ballot.
Pie Traynor …Fine player, fine rep; could he have played shortstop?
Cupid Childs …fine hitting second sacker, and playing IF in the 1890s was tough.
Joe Gordon ……good hitter, good fielder, ended a bit early.
Larry Doyle ….excellent hitter for a 2Bman
Indian Bob Johnson …better career hitter than C Klein, P Browning, or H Wilson
Wally Schang …bonus credit for catching lots of thieves in W.S. play
Roger Bresnahan ...Similar to Chance and McGraw. Great while he played.
Ernie Lombardi …a little speed would have made him a HoMer
Tommy Leach ...Pie Traynor clone almost
Bill Monroe …reasonable argument as best NeL 2Bman.
George Sisler ...Equal of Chance and Beckley, although they sure are different!
Jake Beckley ...Somewhere between Doggie Perez and Fred the Crime Dog McGriff. He’ll have a Ruff time getting into the HoM, though.
Frank Chance ...More Win Shares per game than Henry Aaron! Lots and lots of positive intangibles
Rube Waddell ...Great ERAs & KOs, but many UER and not one of the top 5 Ps of his era.
Dizzy Dean ...Great pitcher for a while. Not as good as Ferrell.
Jose Mendez …Dean clone.
Mickey Welch ...Rixey clone almost.
Alejandro Oms …in there somewhere
Gavy Cravath … might belong also, but it’s real hard to tell
   59. Thane of Bagarth Posted: August 05, 2005 at 03:19 PM (#1524982)
1957 Ballot:

1) Joe DiMaggio
361 HRs, 369 Ks…PCL hitting streak of 61 games, AL streak of 56. Obviously he was great, but his ability to make contact and hit for power seems like such an anomaly. I imagine him to have been something like a power hitting Ichiro!

2) Red Ruffing
His peak is middle of the pack, but he racks up some nice career value (100.2 WARP3, 985 PRAR, 322 Win Shares). It doesn’t hurt that he helped himself at the plate with an 81 OPS+.
A snippet from Bill James on Ruffing’s poor performance with the Red Sox from the NBJHBA:
But was Ruffing actually worse than his teams? Obviously not; he regularly led the team in innings pitched. Perceiving him to be their best pitcher, [the Sox] let him finish games when he should have come out, they started him when they should have given him a day off, and they communicated to him a daily message that trying to win was a waste of time.

3) Billy Herman
Pretty good peak—top 5 WARP3 of 49.1. He puts up some nice career numbers, too: 99 WARP3, 298 WS. Small bump for war credit.

4) Bucky Walters
Even discounting his play during the war years, Bucky comes out better than Ferrell.

5) Lou Boudreau
Virtually tied with Cronin in my rankings. Herman’s war credit nudges him past Lou.

6) Ben Taylor
Riley writes: “considered the best first baseman in black baseball prior to the arrival of Buck Leonard.” I see Suttles & Taylor as tied for 2nd best Negro League 1st baseman. It looks like Ben might get lost in the shuffle.

7) Bobby Doerr
Close to Boudreau, but peak and position advantages give Lou the edge. Looks like we’re getting a new middle infielder glut.

8) John Beckwith
Deserves to join Boojum in the HoM shortly.

9) Joe Medwick
He’s got the best 3-year (109) and 5-consecutive year (157) WS numbers of any eligible player who was never married to Marilyn Monroe. WARP seems to think his peak is more in the middle of the pack—44.1 in top 5 non-consecutive years.

10) Cool Papa Bell
May not have been as great as all the stories made him out to be, but he was still an amazing talent. The longevity factor earns him a ballot spot.

11) George Van Haltren
Clearly HoM-worthy by Win Shares, borderline at best by WARP3…I rank him somewhere inbetween.

12) Dick Redding
2nd best Black pitcher of the Deadball Era.

13) Jose Mendez
Right up there with Cannonball.

14 Wes Ferrell
Great combo of pitching and hitting. 100 OPS+. 3rd highest Career WARP3 (80.9) among eligible pitchers, 2nd highest 5-year PRAR (455).

15) Dizzy Dean
493 in Top 5 PRAR is only 2 behind Hubbell. Not much beyond the peak, sort of the anti-Rixey.

The Rest of the Top 50
16) Eppa Rixey—WARP1 favors Ruffing by 15% before it makes the timeline adjustment. Win Shares shows them as having almost identical career, rate and peak stats. I consider their war-time absences to be a wash. Incorporating any degree of timeline that deflates Rixey more than Ruffing and Red stands out as the better of the two by either uber-stat.
17) Stan Hack—Best White 3B since HR Baker.
18) Fielder Jones—Doesn’t have the >130 OPS+ to get noticed like Averill and Johnson, but WARP and WS seem to agree that he’s in their league. 43.9 top 5 WARP3, 135 top 5 WS.
19) Pete Browning
20) Earl Averill—Solid, consistent major league performer: averaged about 27 WS/year for his 10 full seasons in the majors, never below 22 or above 33 during that span.
21) Spot Poles
22) Alejandro Oms—He had been floating around my rankings in the 35-45 range. I guess I’ve been convinced that he is better than I thought, but I’m not ready to put him above Poles just yet.
23) Joe Gordon—Not quite on the Herman/Boudreau/Doerr level.
24) Bill Monroe
25) Lon Warneke—Better rate stats and peak than Rixey, less career value.
26) Rube Waddell
27) Charlie Keller
28) Dick Lundy
29) Tommy Bridges
30) Urban Shocker
31) Jimmy Ryan
32) Mel Harder
33) Clark Griffith
34) Paul Derringer
35) John Donaldson—2nd best NeL lefty (?)
36) Dobie Moore—I’m starting to move him farther ahead of Jennings.
37) Ed Ciccotte
38) Jack Quinn
39) Vic Willis
40) Tommy Leach
41) Bob Johnson
42) Harry Hooper
43) Jim McCormick
44) Waite Hoyt
45) Burleigh Grimes
46) Hughie Jennings—57.2 WARP3, 150 WS in top 5 years! (Too bad that makes up 82% and 70% of his career value, respectively.)
47) Ed Roush
48) Joe Sewell
49) Biz Mackey—Highest ranked catcher on my list. I’m just not impressed enough by his batting to get him much closer to the ballot.
50) George Sisler
   60. Brad G Posted: August 05, 2005 at 04:36 PM (#1525148)
1957 Ballot:

1.Joe DiMaggio- I met Joe once with my father, back when he would still do autograph shows. As cool as that is, it was even greater to witness the thrill of my dad coming face to face with his childhood idol. One of the great American icons. I have him behind Cobb and Speaker on the all-time MLB CF list so far.

2.Joe Medwick- Excellent peak: WS3 = 109, WS5 = 157, Career Runs Created = 1400, Black Ink = 41, Gray Ink = 226. Ducky was one of those guys who swung at damn near anything… good for him he was a natural hitter. Career Batting Avg. = .324, 8-time top ten hitter. Stand-out year 1937: won the triple crown (and MVP) with .374-31-154.

3.Billy Herman- Career WARP1 = 116.6, WARP3 = 99. The key acquisition that led to the Brooklyn pennant in 1941, Herman was surely one of the elite 2Bs of his era. A fantastic hit-and-runner, Herman was also very adept at stealing signals from opposing catchers while on base.

4.Red Ruffing- Big fan. Career WARP1 = 113.3, WARP3 = 102.7, Black Ink = 11, Gray Ink = 257. Excellent Strat-O-Matic card for 1941. And he only had 6 toes!

5.George Sisler- Monster Career stats: Runs Created = 1477, Black Ink = 29, Gray Ink = 198. Not only could he hit (1920 and 1922 being his standout years), but he had speed too, leading the league in SBs four times. Pretty good pitcher as well. Went into my HoM in 1938. Very close between Ruffing and Sisler.

6.Hugh Duffy- Career Win Shares = 295, Win Share 5-year Peak = 144 (!), Career WARP3 = 81, Career Runs Created = 1229, Black Ink = 38, Gray Ink = 147. A+ Centerfielder with 5 WS Gold Gloves, according to James, who ranks him #20 center fielder of all time. I’ve had him gracing my Hall since 1908.

7.Stan Hack- Awesome peak; Career WARP3 = 89.5.

8.Chuck Klein- Career Runs Created = 1364, OPS+ = 137, and more Black Ink (60) than any other eligible player.

9.Bucky Walters- WS3 = 102, Black Ink = 48, Gray Ink = 152.

10.Earl Averil- Consistent if not exactly mind-blowing career. Averaged over 27 Win Shares per 162 games.

11.Wes Ferrell- Over 30 Win Shares/season.

12.Dizzy Dean- He was one of the greatest for a very short period of time. He was always the first to tell you that too.

13.Cool Papa Bell- The subjective accounts favor Cool Papa. Probably one of the fastest players ever.

14.Burleigh Grimes- Some of the best Ink scores among the current crop of pitchers.

15.George Van Haltren- Career WS = 344, WARP1 = 121, Career Runs Created = 1286.


16.Rube Waddell- Super peak.
17.John Beckwith- Hanging around; could finally break the top 15 next election, if necessary.
18.Edd Roush
19.Eppa Rixey
20.Gavy Cravath

   61. KJOK Posted: August 05, 2005 at 08:09 PM (#1525579)
Using OWP, playing time, and defense (Win Shares/BP) for position players, applied to .500 baseline. Using Runs Saved Above Average and Support Neutral Fibonacci Wins for Pitchers. For Position Players AND Pitchers, heavily weight comparison vs. contemporaries.

1. JOE DiMAGGIO, CF. .741 OWP. 629 RCAP, 122 WARP1, 7,671 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Surprised only got a 100 FLDG from BP, but that won’t keep him off top of ballot.

2. JOHN BECKWITH, 3B/SS. . Estimated 137 OPS+ over 8,010 estimated PA’s, and played left side infield. 221 WSaR and .774 Pennants Added. THE best hitting 3B/SS in the Negro Leagues? Major League comp is probably Dick Allen.

3. STAN HACK, 3B. .631 OWP, 370 RCAP, 95 WARP1, 8,506 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. One of the few good hitting 3B of his era.

4. LOU BOUDREAU, SS. .603 OWP, 274 RCAP, 104 WARP1, 7,023 PAs. Def: EXCELLENT. Defense near Ozzie level plus he could hit.

5. ROGER BRESNAHAN, C. .651 OWP, 282 RCAP, 75 WARP1, 5,373 PA’s. Def: AVERAGE. Best Catcher from 1880s – 1910s means he should be in HOM.

6. JOE SEWELL, SS. .549 OWP, 346 RCAP, 103 WARP1, 8,830 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Comp is Barry Larkin. Best major league SS of the 1920’s, AND 3rd best SS of 1910-1930 period.

7. WALLY SCHANG, C. .595 OWP, 271 RCAP, 78 WARP1, 6,422 PA’s. Def: FAIR. Not quite the hitter or fielder Bresnahan was, but played more games at Catcher, making him almost as valuable.

8. HUGHIE JENNINGS, SS. .607 OWP, 263 RCAP, 93 WARP1, 5,650 PAs. Def: EXCELLENT. Best SS of the 1890’s. Great offensively and defensively. SS defense and longer career value put him ahead of McGraw.

9. JOHN McGRAW, 3B. .727 OWP, 459 RCAP, 78 WARP1, 4,909 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Was CAREER ALL-TIME OBP% leader until Ruth qualifies in 1923, EVEN adjusting for League, and is STILL #3 behind Williams and Ruth. AND he played 3B, where offensive output was generally very low. Plus led his team to 3 consecutive championships. Oh, AND best 3B between 1875-1900!

10. CLARK GRIFFITH, P. 256 RSAA, 199 Neut. Fibonacci Wins, and 121 ERA+ in 3,385 innings. Career-wise, close to McGinnity. Keeps moving up due to comparison with contemporaries as one of the best pitchers of the 1890’s.

11. JAKE BECKLEY, 1B. .596 OWP, 245 RCAP, 115 WARPP1, 10,492 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. A very good for a long time player. Probably best first baseman from 1880 – 1920.

12. BEN TAYLOR, 1B. Estimated 138 OPS+ over 9,091 PA’s. Def: FAIR. Comp is probably Fred McGriff. He’s Bill Terry plus about 3 more Bill Terry type seasons. Also similar to Mule Suttles, just with more deadball years in tougher parks.

13. BILL MONROE, 2B. Estimated 132 OPS+ over 8,276 PA’s. Def: VERY GOOD. Comps are somewhere between Rod Carew and Bobby Bonilla.

14. CUPID CHILDS, 2B. .609 OWP, 354 RCAP, 104 WARP1, 6,762 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Best 2nd baseman of the 1890’s.

15. BIZ MACKEY, C. . Estimated 98 OPS+ over 9,020 PA’s. Suffers in comparison with Josh Gibson, but a .300 hitting Gold Glove Catcher in his prime had to be a very valuable player.



BOBBY DOERR, 2B. .539 OWP, 234 RCAP, 107 WARP1, 8,028 PAs. Def: EXCELLENT. Falls just behind Billy Herman, who is just off ballot.


BILLY HERMAN, 2B. .563 OWP, 298 RCAP, 117 WARP1, 8,641 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Hard to see him as higher than Childs.

JOE GORDON, 2B. .583 OWP, 259 RCAP, 84 WARP1, 6,536 PAs. Def: EXCELLENT. Right behind Herman and Doerr.

EPPA RIXEY, P. 217 RSAA, 229 Neut. Fibonacci Wins, and 115 ERA+ in 4,495 innings. Closest comp is probably Red Faber.

BOB JOHNSON, LF. .651 OWP, 319 RCAP, 102 WARP1, 8,047 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Goes to near head of the class of OF glut, but falls just short of ballot.

EARL AVERILL, CF. .646 OWP, 321 RCAP, 96 WARP1, 7,222 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Fred Lynn a close comp.

JOE MEDWICK, LF. .638 OWP, 267 RCAP, 96 WARP1, 8,142 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Initially overrated Medwick, so he’s moved off-ballot.

PETE BROWNING, CF/LF. .745 OWP, 478 RCAP, 95 WARP1, 5,315 PAs. Def: POOR. Baseball’s premier hitter in the 1880’s. Much better hitter than any eligible outfielder.

MIKE TIERNAN, RF. .678 OWP, 350 RCAP, 81 WARP1, 6,722 PAs. Def: AVERAGE. Compared to Van Haltren’s .620 OWP, 167 RCAP, and average defense, Tiernan looks superior. Even Pennants Added likes Tiernan.

GEORGE VAN HALTREN, CF. .620 OWP, 167 RCAP, 118 WARP1, 8,992 PAs. Def: FAIR. A notch below Tiernan.

RUBE WADDELL, P. 254 RSAA, 222 Neut_Fibonacci_Wins, and 134 ERA+ in 2,961 innings. He was a more effective version of Nolan Ryan (fewer walks) and a LH clone of Dazzy Vance.

WES FARRELL, P. 200 RSAA, 159 Neut. Fibonacci Wins, and 117 ERA+ in 2,623 innings. He could certainly hit, and had some really great years, but falls short in BOTH rate and duration pitching measures relative to other candidates.

DICK REDDING, P. 183 MLE Neut_Fibonacci_Wins, and 114 MLE ERA+ in 3,556 innings. Was the 2nd best Negro League Pitcher in his era, behind only Williams.

GEORGE SISLER, 1B. .611 OWP, 205 RCAP, 93 WARP1, 9,013 PAs. Def: FAIR. Some really great seasons, but not enough of them.

MICKEY WELCH, P. 179 RSAA, 225 Neutral Fibonacci Win Points, 113 ERA+ in 4,802 innings. I don’t see the basis for all the support he seems to be getting. Even if you GRANT he somehow “pitched to the score” where others didn’t (highly dubious) the adjustment for the few games where that MIGHT have happened can’t bridge the large gap in performance between Welch and the already elected pitchers of his era.

RED RUFFING, P. 170 RSAA, 199 Neut. Fibonacci Wins, and 109 ERA+ in 4,344 innings. Good for awhile, and could hit, but I’d vote for Ferrell or even Welch first.

COOL PAPA BELL, CF. MLE of .365 OBP and .382 SLG over 13,637 PAs. Even after giving him “Rickey Henderson” credit for baserunning and “Willie Mays” credit for fielding, he still falls short of ballot worthy. Greatness perception somewhat a ballpark illusion. Best comp is Harry Hooper with speed.

HUGH DUFFY, CF/LF. .623 OWP. 154 RCAP. 7,838 PAs. Def: VERY GOOD. Just not in the elite OF class offensively.
   62. DanG Posted: August 05, 2005 at 08:11 PM (#1525583)
My #1 and #7 were elected. In 1957, Joe DiMaggio is joined by another AL keystone combo, Boudreau and Doerr. The next year, we’ll clear out three(!) from the backlog. In 1959, Satchel leads the strongest freshman class since 1952, which also includes Mize and Dandridge.

1) Joe DiMaggio – An inner circle HoMer, top 25 all-time.

2) Billy Herman (2,3,3) – High peak, high career. Often underrated. The SABR 20th century survey voted him #183 among 20th century white players, which translates to about #225 when you add in 19th century, Negro league and 21st century stars. James has him about #130 in the new BJHBA. He’s right smack in between those two ratings, I think. An all-star ten times. Three times top 4 NL MVP voting.

3) Clark Griffith (3,4,4) – The #4 pitcher of his era, behind three first-balloters, but far ahead of #5. Gets extra credit for excelling in the contraction years 1892-1900. Good hitter, too. Highest Complete Game Percentage 1893-1903, minimum 185 GS:
1—94.1% K. Nichols
2—93.4% C. Young
3—93.3% C. Griffith
4—92.4% A. Rusie

4) George Van Haltren (4,5,5) – I’ve been his best friend in recent elections, a position I am not comfortable trying to defend. He gained back more of the ground he lost in 1954. The 1932 election may have been his last, best shot at induction. Now in his 49th year eligible. Pennants Added study shows him well. He excelled in the contraction years 1892-1900, a period lagging in HoM representation; he had high SB totals (usually 35-40 in his prime years), which I believe was more significant pre-1920; he was a mainly a centerfielder (~71.7% of his non-pitching games vs. ~47.6% for Ryan), Ryan (and Duffy) actually played more corner outfield. Players with most stolen bases 1891-1900:
1—660 B. Hamilton
2—443 G. Van Haltren

5) Earl Averill (5,7,7) – Ranks above Roush on strength of league and minor league credit, otherwise very similar peaks and careers. James ranks them #14-#15 in centerfield.

6) Eppa Rixey (6,8,8) – Liking him more, but not quite up to Faber’s level. Looks like the GVH of pitchers. Only Grimes had more wins during the 1920s. Most IP, 1921-28:
1—2262 B. Grimes
2—2192 E. Rixey
Lowest ERA, 1921-28, minimum 1200 IP:
1—3.00 D. Vance
2—3.03 D. Luque
3—3.12 E. Rixey

7) Lou Boudreau – Being cautious with the newbie, but every popular ranking system I know of puts him in the top 180 all-time. Bill James has him the #12 MLB SS, between Appling and Aparicio.

8) Wes Ferrell (10,11,11) – Liking him more and more. Eight-year prime of 128 ERA+ and 103 OPS+ while averaging 264 IP in a hitter’s league is damn impressive. Only Hubbell pitched more innings in that time. OK, it’s not Koufax, but he kicks Dean’s arse. This is around my HoM cutoff line. Pitchers completing 70% of their starts, 1929-37, minimum 100 CG:
1—74.0% W. Ferrell
2—72.4% L. Grove
3—71.9% D. Dean

9) Tommy Leach (8,6,6) – Still approaching Lost Cause status. I’m now dunning him more for league quality, as others have apparently done. I think it’s what Bill James once said, that all-around players get overlooked, while specialists get overrated. Voters like that one area of dominance. Modern comp to, but just a bit behind, Craig Biggio, he could beat you in many ways. Longevity, defense and speed, more important in that era, rate him above Groh. Versatility is a plus; it should not be assumed that any typical thirdbaseman of the era could have successfully handled CF. Some voters are docking him too severely for league quality. Had a better peak than Bobby Wallace, but his career was a couple years shorter and he had just a little less defensive value. Among OFers with 750 games 1905-14, he is 2nd in PO/G (behind Speaker) and 2nd in FA (behind Clarke). I like guys who play; longevity is a hallmark of quality. Players with 2100+ games played, 1892-1922:
1—2792 H. Wagner
2—2517 S. Crawford
3—2480 N. Lajoie
4—2383 B. Wallace
5—2308 B. Dahlen
6—2305 T. Cobb
7—2242 F. Clarke
8—2162 E. Collins
9—2156 T. Leach
10—2123 W. Keeler
11—2122 J. Sheckard

10) Edd Roush (9,10,10) – Rapidly approaching Lost Cause status. The past five elections have seen him plunge from 16 ballots to 7, as SNT’s Herman-Medwick-Ruffing-Hack have driven away long-time contenders’ down-ballot support. Pennants added likes him a lot. Players with OPS of .850+, 1917-25, minimum 3800 PA:
1—1.193 B. Ruth
2—1.037 R. Hornsby
3—.975 T. Speaker
4—.961 T. Cobb
5—.931 H. Heilmann
6—.918 G. Sisler
7—.865 Z. Wheat
8—.864 E. Roush

11) Red Ruffing (11,12,12) – Equal to Rixey in terms of longevity, falls a bit short on peak and workhorse considerations. Lyons went in without much struggle; Ruffing is close to him as well.

12) George Sisler (12,13,13) – The problem I have with Terry’s election is that nearly every system or ranking I see has Sisler slightly higher. This may eventually take care of itself, but not for several decades. In the mean time, Terry looks like an accident of ballot timing. I think George is still among the top 230 players in history, which is HoMer territory. This is probably not the case for Beckley. OPS+ is only half the story: excellent runner (4 SB crowns), great rep as a fielder, great peak, long career (+9000 PA). Does WARP penalize him for the high quality of firstbasemen in his era? Firstbasemen with 2500+ hits through 1980:

1—3418 C. Anson
2—2930 J. Beckley
3—2812 G. Sisler
4—2721 L. Gehrig
5—2646 J. Foxx

13) Biz Mackey (13,14,14) – I’ve long been a friend of catchers and he’s the best available, knocking Bresnahan off after a 28-year run. I like the long career. Defense apparently as good as any catcher; if Schalk could hit, he’d have been Biz.

14) Joe Medwick (14,15,15) – Good peak/career combo. I supported Goose, why not Ducky? An all-star ten times. Three times top 5 NL MVP voting.

15) John Beckwith (15,--,--) – Second time voter, long time viewer. Brent’s cautions about him carry some weight. Once we elect him, we’re stuck with him no matter what else comes up. He’s comparable to My Good Friend Pike -- the questions about defense and character cloud the stellar hitting record. About half the electorate is sold on him. That’s all it takes to be a HoMer in this environment. Edges past Bell in my NeL queue.

Stan Hack is being strongly considered for future ballots.

Jennings has been on my ballot before and will be again.
   63. Gadfly Posted: August 06, 2005 at 05:22 PM (#1527080)

1. Joe DiMaggio

DiMaggio would have been a much greater player in any other park than old Yankee Stadium. Oddly enough, he suffered from time and place probably as much as virtually any other player; perhaps even enough to offset the New York media bias and make him actually under-rated.
WS 1936-42, 46-51 [25-39-30-34-31-41-32, 24-30-34-21-29-17=387], with war credit 486, best five [41-39-34-34-32]=180.

2. Gavy Cravath
3. John Beckwith
4. Dick Redding
5. Cool Papa Bell
6. Charley Jones
7. Biz Mackey
8. Alejandro Oms
9. Rube Waddell
10. Ben Taylor
11. Hugh Duffy
12. Earl Averill
13. Dick Lundy
14. Roger Bresnahan
15. Edd Roush
   64. Rob_Wood Posted: August 07, 2005 at 04:01 PM (#1528255)
My 1957 ballot:

1. Joe DiMaggio - this just in, he's good
2. Billy Herman - big drop, but Herman's deservin'
3. Bobby Doerr - better than Boudreau & Gordon
4. Jake Beckley - still chugging up the mountain
5. John Beckwith - moving on up?
6. George Van Haltren - I'll be voting for him for a long time
7. Red Ruffing - recent posts cause me to drop him a bit
8. Lou Boudreau - good kid enters in the middle
9. Earl Averill - with PCL credit
10. Joe Gordon - with WWII credit
11. Stan Hack - solid player overlooked by history
12. Bob Johnson - I'm a big FOBJ
13. Tommy Bridges - with PCL and WWII credit
14. Joe Medwick - tough guy
15. Eppa Rixey - with WWI credit

Group top ten that I have not voted for: Hughie Jennings (I just cannot find room for him on my ballot, since I am an avowed career value voter with a low replacement level) and Wes Ferrell (ditto).
   65. dan b Posted: August 07, 2005 at 05:29 PM (#1528391)
1.DiMaggioAn obvious #1, even karlmagnus agrees.
2.Medwick PHoM 1956. Lots of peak value, career value not shabby.
3.Jennings PHoM in 1908. Played on 3 championship teams during his 5-year run as a superstar. 1890’s underrepresented.
4.Hack PHoM 1957. Looks to be a fuzz better than Beckwith or Leach.
5.Beckwith PHoM 1940.
6.Mackey the only unanimous pick of the Cool Papa’s survey of experts.
7.Duffy PHoM in 1912. 1890’s underrepresented.
8.Boudreau I have been waffling on this one. Could be a couple spots higher or lower.
9.Leach PHoM 1926.
10.Griffith 4th best pitcher of 90’s belongs in, PHoM 1913. 1890’s underrepresented.
11.Averill More WS over 10 consecutive years than any other ML player on the ballot not commonly known as the Yankee Clipper.
12.Herman Looks like a HoMer. I have him well ahead of other 2B.
13.Bell Like Mackey, we are underrating this guy.
14.Ruffing Or should Rixey be just ahead of Ruffing?
15.Rixey More career value than any other pitcher in his era not named Johnson or Alexander. PHoM 1939.
16.Cravath Now that we have some mle’s, Gavy jumps on to my ballot and could move higher. Would be in my PHoM had that information been available back in the early 30’s.
18.Poles PHoM 1929.
19.Bresnahan SABR Dead ball era committee has him #1. PHoM 1928
20.W. Cooper Of pitchers whose career began after 1910 and are now eligible for our consideration, Cooper has more WS over 10 consecutive seasons than any pitcher except Alexander, Grove and Hubbell. It looks like I am the only friend he has left. PHoM 1942.

Still undecided where to place Oms. Doerr not ballot worthy.
   66. Howie Menckel Posted: August 07, 2005 at 05:34 PM (#1528408)
1957 ballot, which is our 60th

Not as much time as I'd have liked this week, but I'm glad to say I'll be off throughout the 1958 week of voting, which is a big one....

1. JOE DIMAGGIO - Joltin Joe OPS+s vs Master Melvin, an "85" means a 185 OPS+, only seasons of 400+ PAs.
DiMaggio 85 84 73 68 63 54 51 47 42 39 28 16
Mel T Ott 78 78 74 74 71 68 65 65 58 51 50 50 50 50 39 39 37 33

Let's give DiMaggio three 150s for 1943-45, make his half-season 178 of 1959 a credit of 150, and give another PCL credit year of 150.
DiMaggio 85 84 73 68 63 54 51 50 50 50 50 50 47 42 39 28 16
Mel T Ott 78 78 74 74 71 68 65 65 58 51 50 50 50 50 39 39 37 33
Amazingly, what Ott DID still beats DiMag (on this standard) on what he might have done.

2. LOU BOUDREAU - We're getting to where I'm getting more comfortable with giving more fielding credit. A+ in Win Shares and by general reputation as well is an amazing combo with the 120 OPS+. Career is short, and I can understand some reluctance here. But maybe he picked a good year to debut.

3. EPPA RIXEY - One of the best lefties ever keeps near an 'elect-me' spot after all these years. We've let hitters like this in, but pitchers mostly have had to be icons to make the HOM. Almost time for Eppa to get there. I'm not a huge war credit guy, but look closer at his record and you'll see a 300-win resume in the making. 1918-20 basically a lost stretch, and Cincy - his new team - wasn't generally a powerhouse beyond Rixey himself. Top 10 in innings 10 times.
4. JAKE BECKLEY - Some more discussion of him yields fruit. Top 10 in RBIs TWELVE times. How many HOMers did that? Not his fault that the ABCs clogged his position earlier in his career. I wish fewer voters were so enamored with peak at the expense of this unique career.
5. JOHN BECKWITH - Truly a great hitter, but concerns about fielding ability, career length, and itinerant work history - even by Negro League standards - does cast some doubt. Fascinating character for us to add to the HOM, I'll admit.
6. CLARK GRIFFITH - The 1890s still are underrepresented, though not overwhelmingly so. It's remarkable how much better Griffith's W-L was than the teams he pitched for. I don't generally like exact arc of this sort of career, but the times were different then and I'm adjusting for that.
7. GEORGE SISLER - Maybe he's one more solid year short of being primerific, but I hope he sneaks back onto still more ballots this year. I never realized before this project the extent of the 'two Sislers' career. But he also matches some HOMer's peaks while providing a significant added portion of a career. Not clear on some of the anti-Sisler sentiment; overrated by the average fan, but a great half-career in particular.
8. COOL PAPA BELL - We're wise to realize the results don't match the rep, but great fielder-long career-decent hitter is quite valuable. Another Max Carey? I'm starting to think he's at the 'relatively crappy HOMer' level after all.
9. CUPID CHILDS - Faced the crossroads of my ballot review and survived; this year he moves up two spots. The majors' best 2B, or nearly so, for most of his career is something that we just don't see on these ballots. Fares well in comparison to the coming 2B flood.
10. BILLY HERMAN - Moves up three spots after I look at how he compares with other 2B candidates and just-retired pending candidates. War discount, but it's not like he never hit well against the 'real guys,' so I'm no longer overdoing it.
11. MICKEY WELCH - Yes, room for one more P from the era. If you look at the amount of lopsided scores AND compare them to the fewer and less lopsided losses by Keefe in yest's post in the old Welch thread, the 'pitching in a pinch' circumstancial evidence is there. Went 61-34 vs HOMer pitching opponents.
12. PETE BROWNING - Keeps showing up in any "best hitters not in HOM" charts, but it doesn't produce many new votes, alas. His 1890 PL season says he could have done it in any league, any time, so let's not hold the AA against him.
13. HUGHIE JENNINGS - Would be greatest four-year hitter not to be a HOMer by a lot. I really don't like the lack of further substance, but tough to keep him off in a weak ballot year.
14. JOE GORDON - Was gonna keep him off the ballot, but couldn't do it. I just can't find the separation between my three 2Bs. Gordon has the fielding reputation that has been lacking in some other fielding-metric darlings of the past, could move up.
15. WES FERRELL - Back on the ballot after a few years off. 117 ERA+ not dazzling, but it's misleading with the late-career bad IP. Significant hitting bonus, too. Kind of a weird player, too bad he didn't play some OF on his off-days.

BOBBY DOERR - The killer for me at first glance is that his only huge offensive season came in 1944. But he will be in the 1958 consideration set.
ALEJANDRO OMS - Will make a much fuller review next 'year,' so far just too difficult to pin down.
CANNONBALL DICK REDDING - Ohsoclose to a vote. Now that Brown is in, he and Mendez may get one more look for a final Negro League pitcher to go alongside Paige (and anyone else?)
JOE MEDWICK - Bleh. Has the monster year, the big 3, even a 'big 9 or 10.' Fell off a little too soon, and OF competition is tough, which makes him problematic. I just don't think he's more HOMie than Browning, for instance.
JOE SEWELL - Slugged exactly the league average in his career, split between SS and 3B. That's good, but not real exciting. Still, probably deserves more support from me and the electorate. Nearly pulled the trigger this year, will look at him again.
DICK LUNDY - Falls back off the ballot, but I'm one voter who could swayed back.
RED RUFFING - Definitely not as good as Rixey, in my mind. But gotta love his overcoming losing four toes on his left foot in a mine accident as a kid. Seemed to have something left when he was drafted for 1943, so a little war credit cinches a ballot spot. But remember, the other AL pitchers of the era faced the Yankees lineup 15 pct of the time.
STAN HACK - Thought sure I'd vote for him, but less even than meets the eye when you take away for diluted war year performance while others are getting war credit. Too many "well, I have to put another 3B in here somewhere" votes. No, we don't.
EARL AVERILL - I think you need a 'major' amount of 'minors' credit and quite the fielding bonus to get him to the top 10. We'll see 30 guys like this before we're done, and few of 'em belong in the HOM. Is it 'Ah-verill,' or "AY-verill,' by the way?
EDD ROUSH - I have a problem with the games he missed in a lot of years, but his D and high level of play combined with career length gives Roush strong consideration. Waiting for a weak year.
BIZ MACKEY - I see more Freehan or R Ferrell than anything else so far, and not sure he contributed as much as the countless other Negro League candidates we're mulling. Not ruled out yet.
   67. Trevor P. Posted: August 07, 2005 at 09:11 PM (#1528904)
1) Joe Dimaggio (new). My ballot turns its lonely eyes to you.
2) John Beckwith (3). So his managers and teammates couldn't get along with him? That's their problem. One of the best NeL sluggers - and he played SS/3B to boot.
3) George Van Haltren (4). It'll be nice to once again put GVH in an "elect-me" spot next year. You know who he reminds me of? One of our favorite new toys, Alejandro Oms (who is just off my ballot for reasons I'll expand on in a minute). Solid, consistent player.
4) Red Ruffing (5). A bit better than Eppa Rixey, but WARP may be placing a bit too much emphasis on pitchers' hitting for my liking.
5) Eppa Rixey (6). Gets some war credit for WW1.
6) Stan Hack (7). OBP machine. I like him better than Boudreau and the recent slew of 2B candidates.
7) Jake Beckley (8). Amazingly consistent, for an exceedingly long time. Last year I called him Palmeiro-esque, but I see no evidence of opium or laudanum use during his brilliant career.
8) Wally Schang (9). Inching way up ballot. Consider the following:

Schang: 6423 PA, 117 OPS+. Batting average 4 points above league average; OBP 44 points above.
Dickey: 7060 PA, 127 OPS+. Batting average 33 points above league average; OBP 29 points above.
Cochrane: 6206 PA, 128 OPS+. Batting average 26 points above league average; OBP 53 points above.
Hartnett: 7297 PA, 126 OPS+ Batting average 11 points above league average; OBP 23 points above.

I just don’t see the differences as being that great.

9) Earl Averill (10). Beats Roush based on minimal PCL credit and league strength.
10) Edd Roush (11). I apparently love centerfielders. Even playing in a weak league, he posted some strong stats, and being a career voter I think I care less about whether he always played full seasons as long as the overall numbers are there.
11) Billy Herman (12). Was underrating him prior to this year. Career WARP is quite impressive, and with my 2B analysis he doesn’t seem that far off from Willie Wells, batting-wise.
12) Tommy Bridges (13). Aside from his rookie season (and the 29 innings tacked on to the end of his career) Bridges NEVER posted a below average PRAA.
13) Dick Redding (14). Like his career, especially when compared with recent NeL candidates like Bill Byrd and Hilton Smith.
14) Cupid Childs (15) Lots of value at a time when 2B had perilous, short careers. Like Herman, was underrating him.
15) Wes Ferrell (16). Top peak candidate, in my opinion.


16) Alejandro Oms (new). I'm leaving him just off the ballot for now as I'm not sure whether I should properly consider him a centerfielder or a corner outfielder.
17) Bucky Walters
18) George Sisler
19) Joe Gordon
20) Clark Griffith
21) Biz Mackey
22) Larry Doyle
23) Joe Sewell
24) Lou Boudreau (new). Yes, he may have been an outstanding fielder, but so was Rabbit Maranville; with his short career and war-inflated peak, I can't see him as better than Sewell.
25) Eddie Cicotte
26) Burleigh Grimes
27) Joe Medwick. Very similar to Bob Johnson, which just isn't enough right now to get on the ballot.
28) Rube Waddell
29) Hughie Jennings. A sparkling peak, but the usual criticism: not enough career.
30) Tony Lazzeri
31) Cool Papa Bell

Bobby Doerr is around 33-35. I had initially thought he was better than Gordon, but I take that back.
   68. Jeff M Posted: August 07, 2005 at 11:06 PM (#1528993)
1957 Ballot

Major changes this week, as I complete the overhaul of the system. Comments haven't changed much, though.

1. Dimaggio, Joe – Not really debatable #1.

2. Mackey, Biz – My quantitative methods put him about where the anecdotal evidence would have him, despite skepticism from the electorate. Awfully good hitting catcher.

3. Medwick, Joe – Medwick has one of the largest disparities between the WS evaluation and WARP evaluation that I’ve seen. His WS peaks and totals make him a solid B+ measured against all HoFers, but his WARP peaks and totals make him a C- measured against other HoFers. For example, he’s got 28.3 WS per 162 games, which is All Star-average season. He’s got a 7.1 WARP3 per 162 games, which is good, but not particularly special when measured against the top echelon. I looked generally at the WARP defensive scores again over the last two weeks, and I distrust them more than ever. I’m giving more weight to the WS system in this case.

4. Boudreau, Lou – Excellent fielding shortstop who outhit the league by about 1/3. His WS and WARP1 numbers are top notch when compared to shortstops in the HoF.

5. Jennings, Hughie – I caved. He leaps onto my ballot because many of the changes to my system are designed to give players at key defensive spots a fairer shake.

6. Oms, Alejandro – His closest comps appear to be Manush, Sisler and Wheat. All are already in my PHoM and he played a more important defensive position than Sisler.

7. Herman, Billy – Nudges Beckwith by a few WS and a better team attitude. Not as much SLG as Beckwith but more OBP. Also better than Beckwith defensively at a tougher primary defensive position.

8. Hack, Stan – The best 3b of his era, IMO.

9. Duffy, Hugh – Had him too high last week because the system overhaul was not yet complete. A very good outfielder who hit approximately 40% better than the rest of the league. Good grey ink and a consistent run producer.

10. Sisler, George – Has poor defensive scores and WARP doesn’t like him much. Also doesn’t have the typical HoM RBI and runs scored numbers (even though I realize those stats are dependent on others). Strong adjusted counting stats, and fares quite well in WS.

11. Jones, Charley – With all the extra credit given for minor league seasons, military service, etc., I finally broke down and gave Jones conservative credit for blacklisted seasons. He has been on my ballot every year. The added blacklisted seasons were somewhat offset by my new higher AA discount.

12. Ferrell, Wes – Wish he had pitched longer, because he would be a shoo-in. But he was a peak performer anyway, and could swing the bat.

13. Waddell, Rube – RSI sheds some light on why his win totals aren’t what they could be.

14. Browning, Pete – After much teeth-gnashing, I increased the applicable AA discount, but he proved in the PL that he was no fluke. I don’t understand the arguments about his defense, since defensive outfielders really contribute little to the overall picture. Has been in my PHoM for most of the life of this project.

15. Beckwith, John -- I’ve been all over the place on him. I think I may have had him as high as #6 on the initial ballot. I’ve got him just shy of 300 WS, with good but not overwhelming peaks. Stan Hack, the other third baseman on my ballot (at #8), is up around 325. We have better choices.

Required Disclosures:

Averill, Earl – Decided to give him minor league credit, which boosts him to #16 and almost gets him a ballot spot. I have mixed feelings about the minor league credit.

Ruffing, Red – Everything he did was extremely dependent on the fact he played for the great Yankee teams: compare his stats in Boston and NY. He got a small boost from the defense, a big boost from run support (see Chris’ RSI) and a big boost from those .91 Yankee park factors. A solid but unspectacular pitcher on the right team in the right park at the right time.
   69. Esteban Rivera Posted: August 07, 2005 at 11:49 PM (#1529048)
1957 Ballot:

1. Joe DiMaggio - Jolts to the top. A fantastic player.

2. Hughie Jennings - A monster for five years in all aspects of his time's play.

3. Hugh Duffy - His credentials are that he was for a time one of the best players and he produced during the 90's. Was an outstanding defensive outfielder.

4. Pete Browning - Was a heck of a hitter and did it under tremendous duress. I buy the "greatness can't take full advantage off lower competition" idea. Proved he could hold his own in the Player's League.

5. Mickey Welch - The 300 game winner. The discussion of the past couple of “years” has made me realize that Welch should be a HOMer. Is not that far behind Keefe.

6. Rube Waddell - Was a special pitcher. I buy the run support analysis and also believe in the higher value of being a phenomenal K artist in his time and place. His career record isn't that impressive but you have to remember that there were some stretches where he was jettisoned because his managers did not know how to deal with his unique personality.

7. Dobie Moore - Fantastic peak with just enough career at shortstop.

8. Lou Boudreau - After looking at his hitting and fielding and adjusting for career length and the war, he lands behind Moore in my rankings.

9. John Beckwith - Excepting his hitting, still have many uncertainties about him and what type of career he would have actually have had.

10. Joe Medwick – His ‘highs’ are enough to land him in the lower part of my ballot.

11. Clark Griffith - The more that I look at him the more I realize I have been underestimating his accomplishments. The fourth best pitcher of the 90's should be in.

12. Earl Averill - His place among the best for his time in the league lands him here. Is given credit for the PCL.

13. George Sisler - Put up enough career with a very good to great peak that he goes above Beckley.

14. Bill Monroe - Seems to be one of the best second basemen of his time.

15. Billy Herman - Just ahead of Childs in my second base rankings.

Not on ballot but made Top 10:

Stan Hack – The war discount keeps him of my ballot for now, but he is close.

Red Ruffing – Hanging around Rixey in my rankings.

Wes Ferrell - Very good to great peak but not enough to get him on the ballot yet.
   70. Michael Bass Posted: August 08, 2005 at 03:42 AM (#1529471)
WARP3 is the main tool. Also consider OPS+, ERA+, and the various playing time measures. Win Shares is ancillary, there are some weird things going on there, particularly with defense.

Keller, the only non-ballot newbie of note, is not in my top 50. Peak not nearly high enough to justify the lack of career. Leroy Matlock and Oms debut in my rankings, both in my top 30, but off ballot. Matlock's up and down career shape makes him a better Hilton Smith; Redding is clearly ahead, and Mendez is way better. Oms is trickier, but I don't think he was as good as Suttles, who was not on my ballot in the very end.

Re: Oms. 125 projected OPS+ in 9055 PA. Averill 133 OPS+ in 7215 PA. Both deserve some pre-"majors" credit, but Averill almost certainly gets more. You have to be a pretty hardcore career voter in my view to put Oms ahead.

1. Joe Dimaggio (new) - Not that it matters, as he's a "duh" #1, but one of the reasonable points that David Jones made against war credit is that Joe D spent most of the war years laid up. He's not a serious candidate for war credit. His last minor league year, however, should be counted in his favor.

2. Lou Boudreau (new) - I'm a huge Lou fan. There are two arguments against him, one of which is understandable in my view, the other is not. The career length argument is not a good one; we have elected many players with productive careers of his length or shorter. The amount of war discount is a reasonable argument; I can't definately say how great those seasons actually were. But I do know his 1948 was an all-timer, that he was an A+ defensive SS by every measure we know, and that I can't imagine a discount that takes him below 115 OPS+ career. That, my friends, is a HOMer, and an obvious one.

3. Wes Ferrell (2) - I really like this guy. Has the monster peak, like Vance, but his prime is longer. 3 great seasons and 3 more really, really good seasons are enough to get a pitcher to the top no-brainer position on my ballot. Peak so high, and long enough, that his career is in there with the best of the non-immortals.

4. Hughie Jennings (3) - The argument I used for Caruthers all those years works even better for Hughie. Crammed so much value into a short career that he's more valuable than guys with productive careers twice or three times as long.

5. Dobie Moore (7) - Really, anyone who has Jennings in their top 5 should have Moore somewhere on the ballot. I understand those who have neither, but Moore, while not Jennings, is close enough that there should never be more than 10 or so spots separating them. Probably a little more career than Jennings, a little less peak. Awesome hitting and defense from everything I've seen.

I'm finally going with my gut here. He did not have a super-long career, but he had a monster peak, and his career was all prime (well, we don't know about the Army years, which he just gets some vague credit for, but you get the picture). The comparison to Boudreau, moves him up this high. Dobie is so overlooked it's unbelievable.

6. Billy Herman (4) - Truly great all around play, both on the field and in HOM profile (peak, prime, career). The little things add up to a decent amount more than Hack.

7. José Méndez (5) - I like him more and more the more I read about him. As far as I can tell, the Cuban leagues, where he was by all accounts one of the best player, if not the best, were simply loaded with talent. HOMers, HOM candidates, and people who were good enough to at least merit mention were all over this league. And because there were only 4 teams, they composed a high percentage of the rosters. Maybe I'm going crazy here, but it seems to me that the level of competition in that 4 team league during that era was quite possibly as good as the majors. And Méndez excelled in it.

I think this is the electorate's single most underrated player. This is in part because he does not show up so much in the Negro League awards and polls, because his best work was in Cuba, at a time when all of the best Negro League players were playing in Cuba. Compare Mendez's career to Ed Walsh who, deservingly, cruised into the HOM. Was Mendez's pitching height as high as Walsh's? Likely not, but it wasn't that far off. Some of that gap is closed by Mendez's hitting, which was excellent for a pitcher. Some more of that gap is closed by Mendez having a little value after his peak (when he came back from the injury, he had one solid season left in him), something Walsh had zero of. I'd rate Walsh above Mendez, but so much difference that Walsh flies in on his first ballot while Mendez struggles to break double figure ballots? Doesn't make sense to me.

8. John Beckwith (6) - Liking him more and more, as his offense looks better and better, plus I've upgraded my assessment of his defense some. Don't think he can be below Suttles, at least as good of a hitter, and a much more valuable fielder even if you believe the worst about his defense (and I rate him as about 1/2 3B, 1/2 1B).

9. Bobby Doerr (new) - This is the point of the big dropoff, after which I'm no longer sure anyone is a HOMer, and the next 20-30 slots are kind of a big jumble. Doerr is not, in view, close to Boudreau, but he was a great defender at 2B, and has something to like for all voters.

10. Red Ruffing (8) - I love these hitting pitchers if you can't tell. Just not enough peak to rank higher than this. I had him above Moore/Wells earlier, but I can't justify that at all now that I'm actually posting. Still, a good strong Lyons-style candidate in value terms.

11. Earl Averill (9) - Moving on up; peak, prime, career. Fielding is in question, but I use WARP which thinks much less of his fielding than Win Shares, so I'm not too worried about overranking him. This gives him one year of minor league credit. Very good player.

12. Bucky Walters (10) - Impressive peak and prime. Ruffing's career advantage trumps Walters' peak advantage in this case, because of war factors, which add slightly to Ruffing and subtract slightly more from Walters.

13. Dizzy Dean (11) - Well, I'm a peak guy. And this guy has it. Prime/career not even as long as Ferrell's, so he's midballot rather than top ballot.

14. Joe Sewell (12) - Peak is not that high, but career is basically all prime. Good mix of offense and defense. I do love the shortstops, I admit. His offense isn't quite good enough to justify higher, but it was good enough to demand a ballot spot.

15. Clark Griffith (13) - Has a little career, a little peak, some quality prime, a little for everyone. He also pitched in a tougher league than those who immediately preceeded and followed him.


16. Joe Gordon (14) - I like him a touch better than the group, though not that much. Seems like lots of folks have him top 20-25, and that's give or take about where I have him.. To me, he's basically Sewell lite once you add a touch of war credit. Not an overly long career or overly high peak, but all prime.

17. Bob Johnson (15) - Little bit like Averill, though no minor league credit for Bob. He could hit, field (though in a corner). No peak like Averill, but career is all prime, with the possibly exception of 1945 if you slice up his stats (I think 1944 was so good that even with a steep discount, that's a strong year).

18. Dick Redding (17) - Of similar value to Bill Foster, no longer see him as good as Méndez. Just not quite the peak, and for all the talk about a long career I don't see that either. Still, very good pitcher on the second tier, right in the mix for those last 50 HOM slots.

19-20: Sisler, Browning
21-25: Mackey, Medwick, Hack, Oms, Shocker
26-30: Dunlap, Monroe. Matlock, Buffinton, Lundy
31-35: Williamson, Bartell, F. Jones, Waddell, Scales
36-40: Taylor, H. Smith, Passeau, Veach, Bond
41-45: Klein, Uhle, Poles, Byrd, Van Haltren
46-50: Harder, Warneke, Berger, Bell, Schalk

Top 10 Returners not on my ballot

Hack - Defense was below average, kept him from having a great peak. I do like him, #23, just not quite ballot worthy. Some discounting of his 44-45, too.

Medwick - Not as good as Bob Johnson in my view. Peak not as high as you might think, and career is shortish. How can he rank ahead of Sisler, who had a similar career shape, but a much higher peak? #22, nonetheless, he is not a terrible choice. Just not a prime one.

Rixey - You all know my feelings on him. The Beckley of pitchers, neither should be within miles of the HOM.

Mackey - #21. Mackey's career was really not all that long (minimal credit for the back half when he couldn't hit at all). But he had a nice prime in the first half, and was certainly an A catcher at a minimum. I do hope to vote for him someday, the backlog just keeps getting longer. Maybe the elect 3 year will clear some of that up.
   71. Brent Posted: August 08, 2005 at 04:15 AM (#1529509)
Michael Bass wrote: of the reasonable points that David Jones made against war credit is that Joe D spent most of the war years laid up. He's not a serious candidate for war credit.

While I was spending some time today looking on the Web for info about DiMaggio's 1934 knee injury, I ran across this article that covers his war years. Although Joe suffered from ulcers during late 1944 and part of '45, I think it's probably overstating the case to say he spent "most of the war years laid up." It appears he was healthy and playing baseball (albeit against inferior competition) throughout 1943, and during 1944 he played at least 90 games at an essentially major league level before he started having stomach trouble (later diagnosed as ulcers) in mid summer. (Joe's 1944 Army team included Ruffing, Beazley, and Gordon and played against a Navy team that included Reese, Rizzuto, Mize, and Joe's brother Dom.) Joe also played some in 1945 before his ulcers acted up again.

I think Joe clearly would have qualified as a top wartime baseball player for 1943 and for at least half of '44.
   72. Al Peterson Posted: August 08, 2005 at 04:53 AM (#1529547)
Short on time so you get the Cliff Notes version of ballot for 1957.

1. Joe Dimaggio(-). Made a mean cup of coffee. Oh wait, that was the coffee machine...

2. Joe Medwick (2). I’ve argued how close Medwick and Bob Johnson are when you talk about career value. So if Indian Bob is high then so is Ducky. Beats him out because of career shape – the peak is pretty nice.

3. Lou Boudreau (-). Great D with productive bat. Maybe a glut of good SS in this period but he was amongst the ones we should honor.

4. Earl Averill (3). Highly productive for a centerfielder, he started ML career late after playing semi-pro in Washington state and then three years in the PCL. By comparison to Bob Johnson, Averill had teams which outperformed Pythag W-L by 18 games (1929-39).

5. Bob Johnson (4). His peak might not be as high as others but at the same time for 13 years he has the highest floor of anyone. By floor I mean what can we reasonably expect from him in terms of performance. During those 13 years you knew exactly what you got with Bob Johnson – nothing less, rarely more. I guess my system rewards consistency as well as greatness. WARP numbers like him, WS not so much. Over his career his teams underperformed Pythag W-L by 15 games so he loses some there.

I’m afraid he’s between the two voting factions. He doesn’t have the peak but was effective longer that the high peak, short career players. He doesn’t have the career but was at a higher production level than the low peak, long career players. Either way, he stacks up nicely compared to the other LFs hanging around.

Indian Bob got a late start, played on bad teams in ballparks that favored pitchers, and got left out of post-war ML baseball while he was still doing well at age 39. Hang in there big guy; I’ll try and convince others…

6. Clark Griffith (5). Based on Chris J’s run support index material Griffith’s adjusted W/L is 233-150. That seems pretty good.

7. Hughie Jennings (6). A peak to be proud of, especially for a SS. When you can be in the running for best player in the game in a certain time period that gives you a bonus. A rough style of play in during his heyday means careers were shorter.

8. Dick Redding (7). Pitched in both the Negro and Cuban leagues and did it fairly well. CANNONBALL!!!

9. Wally Berger (8). Another slugger, cut short due to injuries. Right about here the difference between the players to me is getting pretty miniscule.

10. John Beckwith (9). One of the more interesting fellas on the ballot. Hitter with questions about the glove. I’m assuming he found a way to be adequate with the leather.

11. Red Ruffing (10). Wonderful hitter for someone doing it as a sidelight to some good pitching. Rixey is right around here also but a little lower.

12. Bobby Doerr (-). Him and Herman are probably close enough I wouldn't want to argue one way or the other.

13. Billy Herman (11). See Doerr.

14. John McGraw (12). Lived on the bases while playing – check out the OBP. The issue is his playing amount is on the light side.

15. Biz Mackey (13). Not the elite of a Gibson but was a NeL all-time type so I’m inclined to give him the boost.

Everyone in the returning top 10 is still in my top 50 so there is no blatent errors amongst the group think as far as I can tell. For newbies Keller is the only other possible but his career is just too short for my liking.
   73. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: August 08, 2005 at 05:47 AM (#1529580)
Gee, thanks, guys. I was all set for my PHoM - Herman this year, Beckwith next year, and NOW you find that Beckwith wasn't a butcher? Another tough 1:30 AM decision (granted, probably not as consequential as some others.)

DiMaggio and Beckwith make my PHoM this year.

1. Joe DiMaggio (new) Or, as he's known to Sally Brown Joe DiMagiagiagiagiagio. Makes my PHoM this year.

2. John Beckwith (5) Could hit the heck out of the ball, possibly questionable defense at big positions, not the friendliest guy to be around, not an extremely long career compared to the other Negro League candidates, but it does all add up to a player worthy of induction. I think when everything's factored in, he's just about equal to Herman in career and peak. Wins out because he could hit the ball real hard. Makes my PHoM this year.

3. Billy Herman (3) It does seem odd that he piled up such high WARP numbers with a pedestrian OPS+, but the Win Shares are pretty good as well. Could be a bit high, but to me looks like the clear best at 2B.

4. Tommy Leach (4) Excellent fielder at important positions, OK hitter. One of the most complete players on the ballot. We're definitely short on third basemen, and I think he's the best available candidate. Made my PHoM in 1940.

5. Bill Monroe (6) A good player at an important defensive position, with a great reputation for his fielding. Might be better than Herman, but there isn't enough evidence there for me to feel certain about that. Made my PHoM in 1939.

6. Wes Ferrell (9) His peak is pretty huge, but his career is short for a HoMer. Dean's 5-year peak might be better (depends on your Uber-System), but there's no argument that Ferrell's 8-year run was a cut above.

7. Stan Hack (8) Very close to Leach for me, but falls just short. I lean more towards career, and with a cutback for wartime, Leach definitely has the advantage.

8. Red Ruffing (7) I'm not saying I completely agree with Kelly's analysis: 1)The "anybody could have done it" argument is belied by few of the other guys lasting more than a year or two. 2)His non-Yankee time has some value - he threw a lot of innings in Boston. 3)When a team is as good as the Yankees, how much better can a pitcher be? I'd be interested to see a comparison to Three Finger Brown - everybody pitched well for the Cubs, too. All that said, it's at least enough to get me to flip him with Ferrell for the 3rd ballot in a row (the weird thing is that Hack keeps staying in between them)

9. Lou Boudreau (new) I can see the reasons to be cautious, but among the shortstops he stands out on both sides of the ball. I honestly can't see how you can have Doerr or Gordon ahead of him, even with a war penalty.

10. Dick Redding (10) At this stage of the Negro League pitcher analysis, nobody from the crowd has moved ahead of Cannonball Dick to me. I'm not sure the teens need many more pitchers, but better him than Rixey, or one of the hard-to-discern 30's OF.

11. Earl Averill (11) His record appears close to the old CF glut, with a better OPS+ and peak, but a shorter career. Adding in the PCL credit puts him just ahead. The closer I look, the less certain I feel about this, though.

12. Joe Sewell (13) While I have Boudreau higher, I do think the two are somewhat comparable. Boudreau's a little better, but he was playing in wartime, and the first half of his era is much better represented at SS in the HoM (Cronin, Wells, Appling, Vaughan) than Sewell (Lloyd or Wells, and presumably Beckwith). They're not that far apart to me. Made my PHoM in 1939.

13. Joe Medwick (12) It's hard for me to see much difference between him, Averill and Johnson. It may come down to whether you trust WS or WARP, and I try to look at both, so I wind up confused.

14. Cupid Childs (14) He could hit the ball pretty well for a 2B and his defense was decent. His career is on the short side, but he was the best second baseman of the 1890s, whatever you feel that's worth (among white players, at least). He does look awfully similar to Gordon, and is clearly behind Herman. Made my PHoM in 1932.
(14A Bill Terry)

15. George Van Haltren (15) Consistently good, but never great. There's a lot of guys like him, so it's hard for me to pick any of them out as HoM-worthy.
(15A Max Carey)

16. Alejandro Oms (18) He's definitely a candidate, and for now I like him better than Cool Papa Bell, but he's also one more OF from a well-represented era.
17. Bob Johnson (17) His record doesn't look too different from Averill's. I'm impressed by his consistency, he was an above-average player every year for 13 seasons.
18. Jose Mendez (20) Great peak, but I still think Redding's distinctly better.
19. Biz Mackey (19) I am comfortable that he's ahead of Bresnahan, Schang and Lombardi, but those numbers still aren't that striking. Maybe his reputation should get more weight than I'm giving it.
20. Cool Papa Bell (24) It's hard to argue he wouldn't have been a 3,000-hit player in the major leagues, and that does feel like a HoMer, when you consider his speed and fielding reputation. But after looking at Oms, I can't put him first.
21. Ben Taylor (22) A little better than Beckley and Sisler to me for now, and I'd been overlooking the pitching. Top-3 Negro League 1B isn’t necessarily enough for me to put him in the HoM, though.
22. Gavvy Cravath (21) With the basic 07, 09-11 additions, this is where I have him. A better peak than Johnson, but less consistent. WARP isn't too fond of him.
23. Bobby Doerr (new) Could be a little low, but he's clearly behind Herman on career and peak. I'm not really sure why his WS/WARP totals come out so much better than Gordon's, so I'm not putting him much above him.
24. Eppa Rixey (16) I'm definitely not rushing to put in any more pitchers from his era, but his numbers are impressive. Doesn't do great in my pitcher ranking system, but I'm not sure why.
25. Jake Beckley. (25) There is a TON of career value, but his normal season is just too average to give him that much credit. Similar to Bell.
(25A Sam Thompson, 25B Rube Foster)
26. Dick Lundy (23) Close to Sewell, but doesn't quite get there.
27. Rube Waddell (27) The ERA and K's look nice, but the career just wasn't long enough or consistent enough.
28. Jimmy Ryan (28) Behind GVH because he dropped off fairly strongly after his accident.
29. Joe Gordon (26) I see his value as pretty close to Childs', but Childs was the best 2Bman of the 1890s, and Gordon isn't definitively the best of the 1940s (although James picked him)
30. Bucky Walters (33) Could move up some more, but it's hard to seperate him from Dean.
31. Hughie Jennings (40) After comparing him with Boudreau, it's clear I had knocked him lower than needed. Major SS reevaluation coming in the near future.
32. George Sisler (29)
33. Ernie Lombardi
34. Burleigh Grimes (30)
35. Spotswood Poles
36. Charlie Keller (new) A monster with the bat, but the career really is too short even with the war credit.
37. Dobie Moore
38. Vic Willis
39. Bobby Veach
40. Dizzy Dean
   74. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 01:46 PM (#1529737)
I think Joe clearly would have qualified as a top wartime baseball player for 1943 and for at least half of '44.

That sounds reasonable, Brent.

I have to admit that I forgot about his ulcers from that time period. It doesn't affect his placement on my ballot, but I did have to downgrade his rating a little.
   75. Rusty Priske Posted: August 08, 2005 at 01:52 PM (#1529746)
PHoM matches Top 2.

I am way late on this as I have been out of town for the past ten days for a wake. :(

Here is my ballot:

1. Joe DiMaggio (new)

2. Red Ruffing (4,3,3)

3. Stan Hack (3,5,5)

4. John Beckwith (5,7,7)

5. George Van Haltren (6,8,6)

6. Eppa Rixey (10,10,10)

7. Joe Medwick (8,9,x)

8. Jake Beckley (9,11,9)

9. Cool Papa Bell (13,13,13)

10. Billy Herman (11,14,11)

11. Mickey Welch (7,6,8)

12. Biz Mackey (12,12,14)

13. Tommy Leach (14,15,12)

14. Edd Roush (x,x,15)

15. George Sisler (15,x,x)

16-20. Moore, Duffy, Averill, Rice, Powell

21-25. Childs, Ryan, Mullane, Streeter, H.Smith

26-30. White, Griffith, Sewell, Strong, Gleason
   76. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 01:55 PM (#1529753)
6. Oms, Alejandro – His closest comps appear to be Manush, Sisler and Wheat. All are already in my PHoM and he played a more important defensive position than Sisler.

...or Wheat and Manush, who were primarily corner guys.

If he were really similar to Manush, he wouldn't be on my ballot.
   77. Carl G Posted: August 08, 2005 at 02:54 PM (#1529816)
Here goes:
1-Joe DiMaggio-Duh
2-Billy Herman-Fantastic from 32-40. Good during the war, but I took a little credit away for 43-45.
3-John Beckwith-Suttles was a better hitter, but I think Beckwith had more value.
4-Red Ruffing-Nice long(but not spectacularily high) peak with the Yanks, plus 1 strong year with the Sox. More Career value than Rixey, even giving Rixey wartime credit. I'm willing to say he's the best pitcher on the ballot right now.
5-Earl Averill-With PCL credit, you can add career value to an already nice peak.
6-Eppa Rixey-Great Long Career; long enough that his near total lack of peak doesn't kill him.
7-Lou Boudreau-Strong Peak. I think most are overrating him. I'm placing him here for now.
8-Jake Beckley-He's not inner-circle, but definitely 'in' when the back-log-clearing years come around.
9-Joe Gordon-Nice Peak. Gets a little war credit for 44-45 and a slight downgrade on '43; although '43 is in line with the years before so my downgrade is very slight.
10-Dick Redding-One of the great Negro League pitchers
11-Stan Hack-Pretty slick fielder and a good hitter. I took a little away for his 43-45 numbers or he would be higher.
12-Rube Waddell-Nice peak
13-Addie Joss-Great Peak
14-Bobby Doerr-This may may a little conservative. He was a strong player.
15-Gavvy Cravath-Giving him credit back to '07 gives him pretty solid career numbers to go with the peak.

Top 10
16-Hughie Jennings-5 phenomenal years. Its enough, I think, but he'll need to wait.
18-Wes Ferrell-He's not Grove, Hubbell, Ruffing, or Lyons, but he's 5th this period. I upped him in 29-31 for pitching against much tougher offenses than Grove did.
24-Joe Medwick-Strong corner OF. Phenomenal in '37

A strong new class has been hard on these guys. They'll move back up the ranks.
   78. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 03:01 PM (#1529826)
I hate it when players like Manny Ramirez and Albert Belle blow up their clubhouses. :)

and Mike Crudale. :-D
   79. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 03:23 PM (#1529864)
Unless I missed a ballot (which is possible since I had to add quite a few ballots to the HOM ballot counter this morning), we have forty ballots tabulated. Still missing ballots from: PhillyBooster, OCF, Kelly from SD, Eric Enders, favre, the Commish, Andrew M, jimd, Max Parkinson, Mike Webber, David C. Jones, and Craig B.


If you think that was wacky, wait until the 2019 ballot when Fred McGriffey Jr pops up....

   80. SWW Posted: August 08, 2005 at 03:35 PM (#1529894)
I believe that OCF requested his ballot be carried over from the discussion thread.
   81. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 04:12 PM (#1529957)
I believe that OCF requested his ballot be carried over from the discussion thread.

Thanks, Shane. I missed that.
   82. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 04:56 PM (#1530060)
1957 ballot (OCF).
1. Joe DiMaggio (new)
2. John Beckwith (4, 4, 3, 3, 2) The time has come to finish the debate and elect him.
3. Stan Hack (-, 5, 4, 4, 3) Depending on what you consider Beckwith to be, the second or third best-hitting 3B of the last 60+ years. OBP matters. I'll still say that about Hack after Elliot is a candidate.
4. Red Ruffing (-, 7, 7, 7, 4) Offense-ajdusted RA+ PythPat 282-201, which is too good to ignore.
5. Larry Doyle (5, 6, 5, 5, 5) Big hitter in low scoring times - nearly as good a hitter as the backlog outfielders. Mediocre defense, but occupied the position for a long time.
6. Ducky Wucky Medwick (--, 6, 6, 6) His value shape is rather unusual. Perhaps Bill Terry? I see those two as pretty close to each other. For three years, he hit like one of the greats, but the rest of his career falls far below that.
7. Lou Boudreau (new) Clearly ahead of Sewell; clearly behind Cronin. One great year standing out from a very good career.
8. George Van Haltren (7, 9, 9, 9, 7) There are those saying we need more 1890's players, but the vote is split. Mine rests with the remaining outfielders.
9. Eppa Rixey (8, 10, 10, 10, 8) A successful long-career inning-eater. No peak.
10. Wes Ferrell (9, 11, 11, 11, 9) Nice early peak, flamed out young as pitcher, stopped hitting as well. The fact that he pitched in the highest average run environment of any ballot-worthy 20th century pitcher puts his 2600 IP in perspective, since high-scoring innings are more stressful
11. Joe Sewell (6, 8, 8, 8, 11) If only he'd had 2 or 3 more good years - then he'd be an easy choice.
12. Earl Averill (11, 13, 13, 13, 14) Offense a little behind VH, Ryan, Duffy; defense a little ahead of them. Career length isn't good, but maybe he left a year of it in the PCL.
13. Jake Beckley (12, 14, 14, 14, 13) Not much peak, long career.
14. Biz Mackey (13, 15, 15, 15, 14) Catcher is a tough position, and catchers do tend to grow old early. Even Cochrane and Hartnett didn't have the hitting careers needed for election as a corner player.
15. Jose Mendez (24, 22, 23, 23, 23) Moved him up.

16. Dick Redding (26, 23, 24, 24, 24) Him, too.
17. Hugh Duffy (14, 16, 16, 16, 15)
18. Billy Herman (-, 17, 17, 17, 16) Offensively about the equal of Lazzeri, B+ defense; that's a very good player, but I don't see more than that.
19. Bucky Walters (--, 18, 18, 17) Offense-adjusted RA+ PythPat 197-148, with a peak that nearly rivals Ferrell's.
20 Cupid Childs (15, 18, 19, 19, 18) Like a lot of people, his career is too short. Not the offensive peak of Doyle, but it is a real peak.
21. Joe Gordon (----, 19) Not much to choose from between him and Herman.
22. Tommy Bridges (16, 19, 20, 20, 20) RA+ PythPat 190-124, which is a record that has to be taken seriously. Ferrell had a higher peak, but Bridges was a terrific pitcher.
23. Cool Papa Bell (17, 20, 21, 21, 21) A legend, of course, with a very long career. He's down here because I'm not sure his peak is any better than Willie Wilson's.
24. Edd Roush (18, 21, 22, 22, 22) Nearly the same offensive value as the leftover 1890's guys; better hitter than Carey.
25. George Sisler (19, 24, 25, 25, 25) My peak-heavy offensive evaluation system likes Chance ahead of Sisler, and Sisler ahead of Beckley. The order gets reversed because of playing time.
26. Bobby Doerr (new)
27. Bob Johnson (20, 25, 26, 26, 26) A late bloomer, excellent hitter, steady career. WWII discount keeps him out of the top 15.
28. Frank Chance (22, 27, 28, 28, 28) Huge offensive seasons, discounted for his lack of playing time.
29. Rube Waddell (23, 28, 29, 29, 29) The best one left from his generation. Value crammed into a very few years.
30. Roger Bresnahan (25, 29, 30, 30, 30) Very good offense for a catcher; not enough if we think of him as an outfielder.

I just dropped Traynor out of my top 30.

Charlie Keller is a difficult case. I keep thinking he belongs in my top 30 but I can't find the place for him. The < 1200 game career is the problem; there's no doubt that he out-peaks Bob Johnson, by a lot. Had he declined at a normal rate, he'd be right there with Medwick.
   83. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: August 08, 2005 at 05:10 PM (#1530093)
Just getting back from SABR. I have a jillion things today, including going to the DMV. It's possible I won't be able to post a ballot until later this evening (hopefully by 10 p.m.).

Is that going to be an issue?
   84. Andrew M Posted: August 08, 2005 at 05:15 PM (#1530106)
1957 Ballot

1. (new) Joe DiMaggio. Please consider this also a Hall of Merit vote for Marilyn Monroe.

2. (2) John Beckwith. Glad to see his time appears to have come. A 137 OPS+ for a SS/3B with 8,000 projected plate appearances seems easily election-worthy to me. I have not felt comfortable marking him down for character issues.

3. (3) Joe Medwick. Rivals Ott as the best OF in all of MLB between 1935-1937, which is saying something, plus he has several all-star caliber seasons on either side of that.

4. (4) Earl Averill. For 10 years, Averill was one of the 3 best AL OFs—probably the best from 1934-36—who could both hit (133 OPS+/.297 EQA) and play A+ quality CF. Averill also has a good argument for receiving 1 and maybe 2 years of PCL credit if one is so inclined. Though he lacks anything comparable to Medwick’s 1936-37 peak, his value over a 7-10 year period looks similar to contemporary OFs like Medwick and Goslin.

5. (6) Clark Griffith. With the possible exception of 1898, he was never the best pitcher in the league, but his peak between 1895-1901 is very impressive. He had a .620 career win pct. while pitching for some pretty mediocre Chicago teams and a 3.81 DERA/121 ERA+ in 3300 career innings. Could also hit some (69 career OPS+).

6. (7) Billy Herman. Best of the 2B glut, I think. Had a span between 1935 and 1943 in which he averaged 9.7 WARP per year. Win Shares totals put Herman and Doyle in a dead heat, but Herman is missing 2 war years.

7. (8) Eppa Rixey. Except for the years he was fighting in or recovering from WWI, he has a stretch between 1916 and 1928 when he was averaging 275 innings and 21 WS per season with an ERA+ no lower than 109 and as high as 143. His peak wasn’t that high, but an ERA+ of 115 in 4500 innings looks ballot-worthy to me.

8. (9) Larry Doyle. Best hitter of the middle infield glut. His career OPS+ (126 to 112) is better than Herman--but career was shorter and Doyle was almost certainly not as good a fielder. I favor him slightly over Childs because he played a little longer and Gordon and Doerr because I think his peak was higher. Consistently in NL top 10 in HRs and slugging pct., captained World Series teams and won an MVP award. 8 time STATS NL all-star. Defense? Well, WS shows him as a C+ fielder and that’s good enough for me.

9. (10) Dobie Moore. Comparable peak at SS to Jennings, but a longer career. At his best, I think Moore may have been the second best player on this ballot—but his career just doesn’t seem long enough to move him higher.

10. (new) Lou Boudreau. He really is hard to place, in part because there is not an easy player to compare him to. Initially, I thought his 120 OPS+ and A+ defense at SS merited a high ballot spot, but then I worried that his career is no longer than Cupid Childs’s, and, per win shares, his peak level of performance, while good, isn’t head and shoulders better than some guys with longer careers (Herman and Hack, for example) and is not as good as Jennings and Moore (or Vaughan or Cronin.) And then you have the issue of discounting for the war. At his best, he seems to have been an HoM-worthy player, but whether his best lasted long enough is, for me, an open question.

Odd story that has nothing to do with anything: I was in a bookstore last week and noticed a new copy of Lou Boudreau’s autobiography with the sticker “Signed by the Author.” And, sure enough, it was. I guess those haven’t been flying off the shelves since his death in 2001.

11. (13) Stan Hack. Excellent leadoff man who got on base a lot and ran well, Hack also played a difficult defensive position to at least a draw. Win Shares shows him with excellent career and peak numbers, and he was arguably a better player than his teammate Billy Herman. BRef most similar player=George J. Burns.

12. (11) Geo. Van Haltren. Still nothing new to add. Did everything well for a long time during a difficult era. Good peak, career numbers. Even pitched decently. Win Shares makes him look like a clear HoM-er, other measures (e.g. 121 OPS+) make a less compelling argument.

13. (13) Rube Waddell. Downgraded, perhaps unfairly, for unreliability, but in his favor he has lots of strikeouts, of course, but also Top 10 in fewest hits per 9 innings for 8 years, shutouts for 9 years. Career ERA+ of 134, DERA of 3.63/3.81. Relatively short career, but a considerable peak.

14. (14) Hugh Duffy. Duffy has career excellent peak/prime Win Shares, A+ quality OF defense, and good black and gray ink. On the other hand, his career is on the short side (7800 plate appearances) and he only has one season (1894) that really jumps out at you. In some ways, he strikes me as the 1890s version of Joe Medwick, though not as good.

15. (16) Biz Mackey. Deserves more serious consideration, though I recognize I’m not exactly leading by example here.

Next 15, more or less:
16. Wes Ferrell
17. George J. Burns
18. Edd Roush
19. Cool Papa Bell
20. Cupid Childs
21. Red Ruffing
22. Joe Gordon
23. George Sisler or Jake Beckley
24. Indian Bob Johnson
25. Pete Browning
26. Hughie Jennings or Dizzy Dean
27. Bobby Doerr
28. Joe Sewell
29. Tommie Leach
30. Wally Schang or Roger Bresnahan

Required disclosures:
Ferrell—Just off the ballot.
Jennings—Wasn’t good enough for long enough
Ruffing—Probably should be up closer to Rixey, but I think I may be overrating Rixey rather than underrating Ruffing.
   85. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 05:19 PM (#1530112)
Is that going to be an issue?

Since we're not really talking about a neck-and-neck race here, I don't see the problem, Joe.
   86. PhillyBooster Posted: August 08, 2005 at 06:27 PM (#1530263)
My #1 and #3 were elected, which probably kills my ballot similarity, since all my weird picks move up one. DiMaggio, of course. Doerr is simply no Herman, although he's at least a Gordon.

1. Joe DiMaggio (n/e) -- Based upon incorporation of appropriate war credit, I added an extra carriage return between him and Rixey. (Does anyone say "carriage return" anymore? Am I too young to know what that means? I also anachronistically say "tin foil", even though I've probably always used aluminum foil.)

2. Eppa Rixey (2) -- Lots of way above average innings. Lots of solid seasons. War credit. Rixey could end up on the top of my ballot for a loooong time.

3. Jake Beckley (4) -- I consider myself equal parts "peak" and "career", but I think this peak-minded electorate is leaving me with lots of the older career guys on top. On my "more uniquer" scale, failure to elect Beckley will make him the only member of the top 10 in triples (his is #4) to not make it. The next guy who won't make it is Sam Rice (#14)/ Ed Konetchy (#15). Beckley is Rice/Konetchy Plus, and deserves to be in another level.

4. Gavy Cravath (5) – Including high minors play, over 350 WS with a great peak.

5. Jose Mendez (6) -- Will Martin Dihigo become the only Cuban pitcher in the Hall of Merit? Mendez and Luque appear to be my main "lost cause" picks that are pulling down my Similarity Score. Great league with great pitchers. Relatively small league depresses stats (all teams are "All-Star" teams.

6. Mickey Welch (7) -- Will the 1880s soon appear underrepresented? The is the end of my "second tier HoMer" group.

7. Stan Hack (8) -- the Ed Williamson of the 20th century? I missed the boat on at first, and it was in the process of describing why he was off that I realized he shouldn't by. This was actually Ernie Lombardi's spot, who could have otherwise dropped off without comment, but I was convinced by the arguments in the Lombardi thread -- especially those focussing on his GIDP numbers -- that he belonged along with Schang in the mid-to-low 20s.

8. Dolf Luque (9) -- See Mendez. I am the only vote for Mendez, and I think it's because no one else is giving him "excluded for racism" points. Anyway, I think it would become obvious if the stat I was looking for existed, but apparently it doesn't. The stat I wish existed would be the opposite of the "Most Similar by Age" list, where you can now see that at 28, Luque was "Most Similar" to Otis Lambeth, a career 11-9 pitcher who pitched his final 7 innings at age 28. Thank you very much, I learned a lot. My new stat would be "Most Similar FROM Age", so that instead of looking at Luque's career from birt to age 28, you could look at it from Age 28 onward only. I can eyeball that he had about 3100 innings with an ERA+ of almost 120 from Age 28 onward, but it's hard to make his case without seeing who that is comparable to. Better than Red Ruffing, I'd say. More like Early Wynn, maybe. It's hard to eyeball, but that fact is that Luque made the Top 100 in IP despite being excluded from the Game for the first years of his career. Give him a few years of "Negro League equivalency," and Luque should be receiving a lot more than "one" vote.

9. Billy Herman (10) -- Usually, I only vote for Herman in even numbered years, but he looks like he's on the ballot for good after head to head examination with Doerr and Gordon.

10. Roger Bresnahan (11) -- A highly-leveraged catcher. Look at his PA/G compared to his peers. Either he got lots of rest in blowouts, or, more likely, he was #1 off the bench on his days off. If you had a catcher who could hit like left fielder, wouldn't you try to get an extra PA out of him on his rest days? Amazing peak, and a long-enough career if you know who to compare him to.

11. John Beckwith (12) -- I am satisfied that he was sufficiently better than Sewell to warrant a ballot spot.

12. Cupid Childs (13) -- More love for the 1890s.

13. Clark Griffith (14) -- Never the best pitcher, but always near the top.

14. Cannonball Dick Redding (15) -- Because that's just how I'm feeling today, again.

15. Hugh Duffy (off) -- Apparently, because it's an odd numbered year.

16-20: Averill, Jennings, Doerr, Ruffing, Ed Williamson

Medwick bores me, and every time I try to find a statistic that makes me think I am underrating him, I start yawning and have to go find a cup of coffee. Ferrell's peak is not quite Jenningsian. He might be #21, but I don't have to be sure about that.
   87. Jim Sp Posted: August 08, 2005 at 07:57 PM (#1530443)
Picking up on PhillyBooster's comment on Dolf Luque, I'm having trouble finding an evaluation of his pre-ML career. He's #75 on my ballot based purely on ML accomplishments, so he could definitely move into contention. In fact in my notes I have "should move up with Cuban credit" but it looks like that slipped through the cracks in my evaluation.
   88. Jim Sp Posted: August 08, 2005 at 08:22 PM (#1530489)
Picking up on PhillyBooster's comment on Dolf Luque, I'm having trouble finding an evaluation of his pre-ML career. He's #75 on my ballot based purely on ML accomplishments, so he could definitely move into contention. In fact in my notes I have "should move up with Cuban credit" but it looks like that slipped through the cracks in my evaluation.
   89. Mike Webber Posted: August 08, 2005 at 09:07 PM (#1530580)
Using the Modified Stableford Scoring System this week. Due to SABR Toronto mostly recycled comments

1)JOE DIMAGGIO – Easy number one.
2)EDD ROUSH – 314 win shares, with a couple of missing seasons. Add a good peak to that, and I think he is the best of a tough centerfield group.
3)STAN HACK – The best 3b between Baker and Mathews.
4)JOE MEDWICK – Roush and Medwick are close, I’m slotting the centerfielder ahead of the leftfielder.
5)BILLY HERMAN – His weaker peak leaves him behind Hack and Roush.
7)TOMMY LEACH – Long career and solid peak.
8)LOU BOUDREAU – Name either of the 2 HOF players that managed the Cubs from 1946 to 1962 – a period in which they were under .500 every year.
9)COOL PAPA BELL – I can’t shake his reputation, despite what his MLEs have shown.
10)CARL MAYS –I think his peak places him ahead of Ruffing and Rixey, even if he trails the pair by 60 to 75 total win shares.
11)WES FERRELL – Peak gets him on the list.
12)ROGER BRESNAHAN –Best catcher between Ewing and Hartnett. I think favre arguments about Schang being better than Mackey could be equally applied to Bresnahan.
13)ROGER BRESNAHAN –Best catcher between Ewing and Hartnett. I think favre arguments about Schang being better than Mackey could be equally applied to Bresnahan.
14)RED RUFFING – About the same as Rixey, however I think his weak peak is more the norm for his era than Rixey.
15)HUGHIE JENNINGS - His peak probably puts your team over the hump for the flag, trumps the problems of short career

16-30 Gordon, Dean, Traynor, Doerr, Warneke, Lazzeri, H. Wilson, Waddell, Schang, Redding, Duffy, Doyle, W. Cooper, Mendez, Moore

Disclosures – Beckwith, #32.

Ale Oms – I did not get to him this week.
   90. PhillyBooster Posted: August 08, 2005 at 09:12 PM (#1530589)
Might be a good chance to re-check the Dolf Luque thread.. The last post in the thread lists Luque as #2 all-time in Cuban wins (after Martin Dihigo). Post #20 lists all players with at least 200 wins and 3000 IP after age 28. Luque is perhaps the worst player on that list, all of whom are HoM/HoFers.

The Cuban League and Minor League stats are largely there, although there is debate about what to do with them. Racism or young kid breaking in? I chose the former, although I see how others woudl interpret the data differently. I give Luque 600 IP at his career average rate (117 ERA+). The other axis is a conversion rate of 97 ERA+, which I think is too low.
   91. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 09:14 PM (#1530593)
Mike, should your last three candidates be Ruffing, Jennings, and Gordon instead?
   92. Mike Webber Posted: August 08, 2005 at 09:28 PM (#1530616)

No Number 13 should be Wally Berger, cutting and pasting problem I guess.

13)WALLY BERGER – If we can build consensus on the order the Cfers should be ranked, one of these guys will get in (Roush, Bell, Averill or Berger or Van Haltren or Ryan).

Sorry Ballot counters!
   93. jimd Posted: August 08, 2005 at 11:33 PM (#1530833)

Ballot for 1957

Read previous ballots if you want more depth on my reasons for all but the latest eligibles.

Still revising my syste (yet again). Maybe next election.

I'm dropping my official support for some candidates as lost causes. When I am the only supporter two years in a row, that's it, until someone else brings them back. They will remain on my ballot, but deprecated as a "lost cause" (see Fred Dunlap).

1) J. DIMAGGIO -- Easy #1 here.

2) H. JENNINGS -- If he had any kind of career, he'd be first-ballot, inner circle.

3) W. FERRELL -- Great peak and longer than some of the other high peak pitchers. To me, an 8 year prime at Grove's level is HOM-worthy.

4) C. CHILDS -- Best offensive 2b of the 90's.

5) J. SEWELL -- Nice combination of WARP peak and career.

[lc) F. Dunlap -- Great two-way player; bypassed for some reason. Lost cause.]

[lc) B. Veach -- Good peak relative to great competition. Was an all-star OF longer than Medwick, Averill, etc. Lost cause.]

6) J. BECKWITH -- Belongs.

7) G. VAN HALTREN -- Not much more to say.

[lc) F. Jones -- Still an all-star player when he walked away.]

8) G. SISLER -- Overrated but still good.

9) B. HERMAN -- Moving up after checking the competition.

10) T. LEACH -- Pennants Added convinced me that my system underrates him.

[lc) R. Maranville -- Very long career playing great defense; needs a little more bat. Lost cause.]

11) B. MACKEY -- Catcher bonus gets him on ballot.

12) R. RUFFING -- 5 time All-Star (top-32 WARP) versus once for Rixey.

13) S. HACK -- Groh-lite.

14) E. AVERILL -- Giving a little bit of PCL credit.

15) H. DUFFY -- The Joe Medwick of the 1890's, but with more good seasons. One thing I prefer about Win Shares over WARP is the feedback from team wins; WARP writes off the "unexplained" discrepancies as a fluke. Well, the Beaneaters of the 1890's constantly and significantly outperformed their stats (up to 12 wins per season). Not a fluke, hence WARP underrates them. I have no reason to believe that Duffy shouldn't receive his fair share of credit for those extra wins.

Just missing the cut are:
20-23) Harry Hooper, Jimmy Ryan, Dick Redding, Eppa Rixey,
24-27) Gavy Cravath, Ned Williamson, Ray Schalk, Joe Medwick
28-31) Herman Long, Dick Lundy, Jim McCormick, Wally Schang,
32-35) Edd Roush, Jose Mendez, Roger Bresnahan, Rube Waddell,
36-37) Clark Griffith, Jake Beckley,

I need to seriously evaluate the Boudreau/Doerr/Gordon cluster. No time at the present, unfortunately.
   94. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 08, 2005 at 11:50 PM (#1530878)
Jim, as Joe and I posted on the last ballot thread, your ballot is unconstitutional because you're not voting for the top fifteen players you actually feel belong on your ballot. We have excused your other ballots in the past, but we made it fairly clear two weeks ago that from now on we would be cracking down on it. Therefore, we hope you can amend your ballot or else we wont be able to count it as is.

We do appreciate your honesty in this matter, because I suspect there are some who are doing exactly the same thing as you without coming out an admitting it.
   95. Kelly in SD Posted: August 08, 2005 at 11:58 PM (#1530900)
1957 Ballot

1. Joe DiMaggio. Best career, best peak, best prime, best per season, and most all-star appearences of any eligible. Yes, he is number 1.

2. Mickey Welch. Best eligible pitcher. The weight of the evidence. Record against other HoM pitchers. Lack of run and defensive support in comparison with those same pitchers yet he produces a similar record.

3. Charley Jones. Great prime, peak. Career is obscured by shortness of seasons and from missing 2 whole seasons and part of a third over a dispute about pay that turned into blacklisting.

4. Pete Browning. Normally, I’d comment about him being the best pure hitter on a ballot, but not this year with DiMaggio and Keller. Great hitter nonetheless. Very high prime, peak, and rate.

5. Charlie Keller. Am I his best friend? I give credit for 1.75 seasons lost to the war and no credit for what he may have done if not for the back problems. Took walks, hit for power. One of the top 5 players in the AL in 1941, 1942, 1943, 1946, a top 15 player in 1940, top 20 player in 1939. More next year, I need to get the ballot in.

6. Wes Ferrell. Great peak. Great prime. Missing out on several best of years due to Grove. Third best pitcher of the 1930s to Grove and Hubbell.

7. Hugh Duffy. High peak and prime. Great fielder who came by his WS numbers honestly as he was a CF for 1/3 of his career. He moved to left for Billy Hamilton.

8. Bucky Walters. Am I his best friend? Three years best in his league. One year as best player in the game. His peak score is very high, his prime is good, and his rate is better than many other candidates. I deduct about 12% from his war time achievement to find his prime/peak/career scores.

9. Earl Averill. Extremely consistent. Not at DiMaggio levels, but 7 years over 25 WS is very rare among eligibles. Best CF b/t Speaker and DiMaggio. 9 time AL All-Star by WS.

10. Vic Willis. The best of the Oughts pitchers not elected. 2 best in league, 2 times second. Many times top 10 pitchers in league.

11. Alejandro Ohms. Maybe overrating. But my system likes long high primes and Ohms has that in spades.

12. Burleigh Grimes. Benefits (as do all the pitchers) by my reevaluation of my standards for post 1920 pitchers. Had higher peaks than Rixey or Ruffing.

13. Donie Moore. My top ranked shortstop. Trying to even out my ballot so as not to be all CF and pitchers. He is close to a tie GVH, Roush, Jennings, Mackey, Beckwith, Jennings, and Medwick. He gets some Army credit. Achieved at a very high rate.

14. Biz Mackey. This “year” I like his defense and long career. The third best catcher in the NeL deserves our enshrinement at some point.

15. Wilbur Cooper. My reevaluation of pitchers boost him slightly. Long, consistent prime with higher peaks than Rixey and Ruffing. Many all-star apps and top 10s in league pitchers.

Top 10s and others.
Beckwith: Tied with many others (see Moore comment). He could very well be on the ballot. There is only a sliver of difference b/t 11 and 25 on my ballot.

Ruffing: I think his record is a symptom of the Yankees of the era.

Rixey: Not as good as Ruffing. Low prime and peak performers do poorly in my system.

Sisler: About 25th on the list. Overall career is not there for me.

Medwick: Discounting him some b/c of the Cardinals consistent exceeding of their Pythag record increases available WS and thought he was benefitting too much from 2 or 3 great years.

Herman: In the 11-25 range. Am in the middle of a middle infielder analysis that I will post soon. By the numbers only he comes in about 20th.
   96. Kelly in SD Posted: August 09, 2005 at 12:01 AM (#1530904)
Oops. Forgot about Stan Hack and Hughie Jennings.
Hack rates surprisingly poorly in my system which is why I am doing the middle infielder (and 3rd base) analysis.
Jennings may benefit from the same. 5 great years puts him on the cusp and that is despite designing my system so that such careers would not do well.
   97. DavidFoss Posted: August 09, 2005 at 12:08 AM (#1530922)
Therefore, we hope you can amend your ballot or else we wont be able to count it as is.

He does have his lost causes slotted into his ballot already. Could his ballot simply be renumbered?
   98. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 09, 2005 at 12:10 AM (#1530932)
He does have his lost causes slotted into his ballot already. Could his ballot simply be renumbered?

That would (of course) be fine by me, David, but he may not want to do this. I hope he does, however.
   99. OCF Posted: August 09, 2005 at 12:27 AM (#1530995)
Just got back. Logged on at about 4:30 PDT, am about 1/3 of the way through tallying. Thanks for finding and moving my "absentee ballot."

If it were just me, I'd count jimd's ballot the way he cast it.
   100. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: August 09, 2005 at 12:30 AM (#1531006)
If it were just me, I'd count jimd's ballot the way he cast it.

I'm going to e-mail him about it first because he may have missed our posts from the last ballot thread.
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