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Monday, December 22, 2003

2004 Hall of Fame ballot discussion

Some of you asked for a thread to discuss the 2004 ballot for the Hall of Fame, while we’re on vacation. Here you go!

It was suggested to run a mock election using our system. If we do so, we shouldn’t just have players on the ballot as eligible. In keeping with our practice, we should consider ALL players not in the Hall of Fame today. Putting together a 15-player ballot with that system would be great.

To make sure no one is missed, we should nominate players for the ballot. I’d immediately nominate the HoMers that aren’t in the Hall of Fame: Ross Barnes, Bill Dahlen, Jack Glasscock, George Gore, Paul Hines, Cal McVey, Hardy Richardson, Joe Start, Ezra Sutton and Deacon White.

I’d also nominate players that have been erased from BBWAA eligibility guys like Bobby Grich, Craig Nettles, Lou Whitaker, Joe Torre, Bill Freehan, Ron Santo and Ron Guidry, to name a few. A composite ballot of these players, and others that I’m not remembering off the top of my head would be fascinating.

JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: December 22, 2003 at 09:15 PM | 40 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2003 at 10:30 PM (#520389)
Heinie Groh.
   2. Marc Posted: December 22, 2003 at 10:45 PM (#520390)
Here's the only way I can keep track:

C-Torre Freehan Simmons Parrish Schang Munson. So far so good, best of the rest: Charlie Bennett

1B-McVey Start Allen Cash. How about: Will Clark, Keith Hernandez, Don Mattingly

2B-Barnes Richardson Grich Whitaker Randolph Doyle. Next: Ryne Sandberg (!), Joe Gordon

SS-Dahlen Glasscock Stephens. Best of the rest: Trammell

3B-Sutton White Nettles Santo DaEvans Elliott Hack. Also: Paulie (!), Ken Boyer, Heinie Groh

LF-BJohnson Magee Sheckard Minoso. And: Jim Rice, Harry Stovey

CF-Gore Hines RSmith Oliver. I would add: Dawson, Dale Murphy

RF-DwEvans. That's easy, add: Oliva and Parker

SP-Guidry and Blyleven. That's plenty. (Just kidding, one could go wild here): Caruthers, Bond, Mullane, Bucky Walters, Stieb, McCormick, Ferrell, Morris, Kaat

RP-None. Gotta have: Eck, Goose, Bruce, Quiz and Lee Smith

I might suggest we just go ahead and incorporate the official 2004 ballot into ours. Or else not have an official ballot, it's gettin' pretty looooong.
   3. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2003 at 10:54 PM (#520391)
Bobby Bonds and Jimmy Wynn, too (especially the latter).
   4. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2003 at 10:55 PM (#520393)
Bobby Bonds and Jimmy Wynn, too (especially the latter).
   5. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2003 at 10:57 PM (#520394)
I didn't hit the post button twice, so I have no idea why it made a duplicate.
   6. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2003 at 10:58 PM (#520395)
I didn't hit the post button twice, so I have no idea why it made a duplicate.
   7. Jeff K. Posted: December 22, 2003 at 11:01 PM (#520396)
Will Clark was my favorite player growing up. The problem is that he's not 5-year eligible yet, so it would be a bit premature to put him on this ballot. My mind's a blank for anyone additional to add beyond the proposals above, which I second.
   8. Marc Posted: December 23, 2003 at 12:53 AM (#520398)
Well, just for focus, I'd stick to the 2004 BBWAA ballot. My list above (that was my oops with Will the Thrill) was in the spirit of Joe's direction. But I had anticipated when this idea was originally tossed out there that it would be the 2004 BBWAA ballot.

So, whatever.
   9. ronw Posted: December 23, 2003 at 02:09 AM (#520400)
Let's not get ahead of ourselves too much. We'll be voting on the rest of the guys soon enough.

For fun, let's limit it to the 2004 BBWAA ballot, as if we were the writers. In fact, let's see if our arguably limited number of voters can elect someone, using the same rules the BBWAA has (i.e. 75% for election). With 44 voters (the 1916 HOM election) a candidate needs 33 votes to make it.
   10. jimd Posted: December 23, 2003 at 03:45 AM (#520402)
Columns: WS Rank, WARP-3 Rank, Win Shares (from #18), WARP-3
   11. Marc Posted: December 23, 2003 at 06:47 PM (#520404)
Personally I'm a small hall guy. There are probably about as many really deserving HoFers as the BBWAA has elected over the years (115-120 or so [plus Negro Leaguers] out of the 200 or so who are enshrined). But since Cooperstown is not now and never will be a small hall, I also believe modern players should get the same shot that the old-timers got. If I had a BBWAA ballot, I could easily vote for 10 on that rationale. As for my own personal HoF, it would only be the first 5.

Thanks to Patrick for taking the reins. Speaking as a Minnesotan and not-quite-lifelong Twins fan (they didn't exist when I was a kid), concerning '87, Patrick, tough ****. Kent Hrbek's slam in game 6 (and Kirby's walk-off in game 6 '91) are still the two great thrills of this sports fan's life. And yet, BTW, I can't quite get Mollie and Bert into the top of my ballot, heavily weighted toward peak value as it is. This ballot has not been vetted nearly as much as my HoM ballots, so please...

1. Dennis Eckersley--lots better than Rollie
   12. Marc Posted: December 23, 2003 at 07:45 PM (#520405)
And just for the helluvit, if we were voting for anybody not already in Cooperstown, here's my (real quick) ballot for that.

1. Ross Barnes
   13. karlmagnus Posted: December 23, 2003 at 08:45 PM (#520406)
I don't think I feel competent to rate this field any better than the BBWA does, although hopefully by the time we get to the 2004 HOM I will. I think Start, McVey and Caruthers should go in before any of the current candidates, though -- all three MUCH more unique talents.
   14. Philip Posted: December 24, 2003 at 10:37 AM (#520407)
This is a quick ballot without much detailed research. Top 4 are definites, but really all have a good case. It's hard to be objective with 4 of my all-time favorites are on my ballot (luckily Lloyd Moseby is not on the ballot! :-)). But even though my comments may seem a little biased, I consider this an objective ballot.

1. Blyleven - Most underrated player ever! My second favorite pitcher (see below)
   15. EricC Posted: December 24, 2003 at 11:18 AM (#520408)
I haven't studied any recent players in detail, so I'm not really qualified to vote here. My top 2 would be Blylevan and Sandberg- obvious oversights of Cooperstown. My sentimental favorite is Dave Stieb.
   16. Rusty Priske Posted: December 24, 2003 at 01:47 PM (#520409)
My ballot i sonly 8 deep because I have only included those I think deserve to go in.

1. Paul Molitor
   17. Al Peterson Posted: December 24, 2003 at 02:53 PM (#520412)
I'll follow Paul's request for a top 10 listing. If I was a BBWAA writer my returned ballot would be the first 5. Enjoy...

1. Paul Molitor. Neat career - went from top of order sparkplug in Milwaukee to solid run producer in Toronto.
   18. Adam Schafer Posted: December 24, 2003 at 05:35 PM (#520413)
If I had a real ballot, I'd list in this order

1. Molitor
   19. Rick A. Posted: December 24, 2003 at 05:51 PM (#520414)
OK here's my ballot

<b>1. Ryne Sandberg
   20. Marc Posted: December 28, 2003 at 03:57 AM (#520419)
It appears to me that Eck will go into the HoF this year while the Goose will have to wait...again. Yet I think Steve is right. Goose is da man and should go in with, if not before, Eck. As I've said before, their run as dominant closers is what matters in this HoF election. Here are their best ERA+ figures as a closer (i.e. in seasons with 10 or more saves).

Eck 607 236 196 161 136 130 127 106 104 98 93
   21. Marc Posted: December 28, 2003 at 04:29 PM (#520421)
red, obviously one ought to consider Eck's starter years. WS is the one measure that most acentuates the starter's advantage based on pure innings with no consideration given to leverage, however.
   22. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 28, 2003 at 05:54 PM (#520422)
1) Sandberg: The best second baseman of his time. Long enough career should have made him a first-balloter.

2) Molitor: Long career of sustained quality is HoF-caliber in my book. Don't let the years at DH diminish his value - he was a damn good fielder for many a year at a few demanding positions.

3) Bert Blyleven: If he had been fortunate enough to have started his career during the pitcher-friendly sixties (and had a little more offense backing him up), he would have been an easy first-ballot selection. Hell, if he had a measly 13 more wins, the BBWAA's perception of him would be greatly changed.

4) Trammell: Being compared to Ripken (and the power shortstops of now) is unfair. Arguably top-ten at his position should be more than enough for the dumb-dumbs voting.

5) Eckersley: Hard to figure his overall value out, but I think the whole package has merit and worth for the Hall.

6) Gossage: Long, brilliant career as a relief guy (when being a relief pitcher was more "fireman" than closer) should be enough for induction.

Number seven should be Lou Whitaker, but we know the deal with that.

Keith Hernandez is borderline, but close to the outside-looking-in section. To a lesser extent, the same could be said about Dawson, Murphy, Rice, Parker, Sutter, L. Smith and Mattingly. While I wouldn't advocate any of these gentleman for induction as of right now, I wouldn't cry about it.

I'm not fully decided about Dave Steib; the exigencies of being a pitcher during the seventies and eighties lead me to believe he probably belongs. He might (hopefully) wind up on a future faux ballot. I am confident enough to say he's a better choice than the John's, Morris', etc.
   23. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 28, 2003 at 06:03 PM (#520423)
He might (hopefully) wind up on a future faux ballot. I am confident enough to say he's a better choice than the John's, Morris', etc.

Try this instead:

He might (hopefully) wind up on a future faux ballot. I am confident enough to say he's a better choice than the Johns, Morrises, etc.
   24. Marc Posted: December 29, 2003 at 12:53 AM (#520426)
I'm not the guy to explain leverage but it's a concept that has been used to describe game situations in which pitching performance becomes more important--e.g. one run game versus a three run lead, etc. In theory the modern closer is used in such a way as to maximize "leverage"--he is used in the most "important" situations (in theory, not always in reality). On the other hand, I believe that Gossage pitched 2 innings in a 1-run game a few times, whereas a "modern" closer pitches a lot of 9th innings with a 3 run lead. Goose was more valuable because used when there was more leverage. Or perhaps a reliever who comes in WRISP in a 1-run game in the 7th inning and gets out of it. Then the home team scores a couple in the 8th and the closer comes in with a 3-run lead for the save. The guy who pitched in the 7th was more valuable--had more leverage. This is the Red Sox so-called (but NOT really) bullpen by committee approach--i.e. use your best guy in the 7th in that game because that's when there's more leverage.

Overall, it is an attempt to get away from the mindless use of saves to evaluate relievers. A closer can rack up a lot of saves with little leverage.

As for Eck's "obvious domination," if you mean his peak as a closer vs. Goose's peak years as a closer, I just don't see it. Check the ERA+ scores again in post #36. Goose was better in seasons #2 through 11, every single one of them. Eck's saves (compared to Goose's) are 100% an artifact of how he was used. Take a look at Hoyt Wilhelm for the greatest relief pitcher of them all. Not a whole lot of saves per inning.

Now note also that I have Eck #1 on my ballot and Goose #5. Eck gets credit for his career as a starter. But I'm just trying to pull Goose along, too. Any of you who are younger and didn't see him, he was Eck's match in his prime. He was the 230 pound version of Mariano Rivera. (But Dan Quisenberry's peak was very competitive with Eck and Goose, more so that Sutter IMO.)

Can somebody cite the study that was published here at primer during '03 (I think) which as far as I am aware is the leading study of the subject of reliever leverage? I would guess the author is probably posting here on HoM but I can't remember who it was.
   25. Marc Posted: December 29, 2003 at 01:11 AM (#520427)
I hope Paul Wendt will forgive me for posting this info that he previously posted elsewhere. The first two numbers are the ERA+ and innings for 10 best consecutive years of relief pitching. The second three numbers are ERA+ and innings from the players prime plus the number of years that Paul felt he (the pitcher) was in fact "prime." The numbers after the name are the 10 years and then (the prime years).

185-, _975 - 185-, _975 (10) - Gossage, 1975 & 77-85 (same)
   26. Devin has a deep burning passion for fuzzy socks Posted: December 29, 2003 at 04:20 AM (#520428)
OK, I can't claim to have done as much research as I should have, but here's my top 10 anyway:

1) Paul Molitor
   27. Marc Posted: December 29, 2003 at 07:35 PM (#520431)
Here's some more info. re. "leverage." I may have to retract what I said about WS not employing leverage. Here are some numbers for relief pitcher Tom Gordon for 2001 and 2002. In 2001 he was used as a closer, in 2002 he was not.

2001 1-2, 3.38, 27 saves, 45.1 IP WARP 2.8 WS 8
   28. sean gilman Posted: December 29, 2003 at 09:39 PM (#520433)
1. Ryne Sandberg
   29. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 01, 2004 at 12:30 AM (#520436)
Gee, I sure hope all of you who've been fiddling around here on the Primer with your HOF voting schemes and procedures remembered to cast your ballots in the real public HOF balloting, the STATLG-L Internet Hall of Fame that I run over at the Prospectus site.

But of course. :-) Third year now.

BTW, has their HoF project for a few more days, too.
   30. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: January 01, 2004 at 09:43 PM (#520438)
Wow, Neal, that was the most condescending, arrogant post I have ever seen on Primer. Congratulations.

Now I'm tempted to actually forgo voting in the STATLG-L balloting this year... sorry, that should be the "real" balloting, shouldn't it? My mistake. I wouldn't want to endanger your obviously solid grip on reality.
   31. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: January 01, 2004 at 11:12 PM (#520439)
Wow, Neal, that was the most condescending, arrogant post I have ever seen on Primer. Congratulations.

I just assumed he was joking when I first read it. Now I'm not so sure anymore.
   32. Paul Wendt Posted: January 05, 2004 at 03:26 PM (#520442)
Steve Rohde #49
   33. Paul Wendt Posted: January 05, 2004 at 03:53 PM (#520443)
Marc #44
   34. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: January 06, 2004 at 05:06 PM (#520445)
Why Jim Rice Shouldn't Be In The Hall of Fame - very quick edition

(NOTE : I think Rice is a borderline candidate. My opinion on Rice changes every ten minutes.)

1 - Unimpressive career totals

Rice's best career total is his 382 home runs, which place him 45th all-time. But Rice had fewer career home runs than Dwight Evans, Graig Nettles, Joe Carter, Dale Murphy, and Darrell Evans (to name a few), all of whom had far more defensive value than Rice.

2 - Park Factors

Rice's impressive numbers need to be adjusted downwards for the extremely friendly confines of Fenway Park.

3 - More impressive and directly comparable candidates ahead of him

Rice needs to wait for some of the comparable candidates to make it, especially among outfielders. Andre Dawson had much more career value than Rice. Dave Parker had a better peak than Rice, and a higher career value. Dale Murphy the same (though Rice is close to Murphy in career value). That's three guys who rate more or less ahead of Rice, yet none of those three is a particularly popular candidate.

4 - Poor postseason performance

A small but important factor.

I think there are others, that's all I could think of right now.
   35. tangotiger Posted: January 06, 2004 at 08:55 PM (#520446)
Paul, you mentioned Kent Tekulve. I thought you might like this:

Year PA LI Leveraged PA (PAxLI)
   36. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: January 09, 2004 at 07:32 PM (#520448)
in 1978 he had 406 total bases and the next highest player had 297, no one else had 300 and he had over 400!

Yeah, and he would have been the best hitter in baseball too, if it weren't for the fact that a guy in the other league, name of Dave Parker, wasn't better. Just as he had been better in 1977. And would be better in 1979 and 1980. Just as he had been in 1975 and 1976.

Parker started to have knee problems, bad ones, after that and Rice passed him for a while. Then by '84-'85, Parker was better again and stayed that way for good, except for a great year from Rice in '86.
   37. Marc Posted: January 09, 2004 at 09:08 PM (#520450)
I'm with Tom. I see them as both or neither.
   38. Paul Wendt Posted: January 09, 2004 at 10:08 PM (#520451)
I remember him being feared, his 77 thru 79 seasons had to have a higher peak value than anything Joe carter or Murphy had . . .

Using Win Shares as a single-season measure, you must define peak in terms of *three* consecutive seasons, or fewer, in order to rank Jim Rice near the top among his extended contemporaries. See Singleton, Parker, Murray, Mattingly; Henderson, Murphy, Dawson. If 1981 is prorated to 162 games (for Murray, Henderson, and Dawson), then each of those players but Dawson slaughters Rice over five seasons, and Dawson beats him soundly.

Not Joe Carter --or Jack Clark, who never played five consecutive seasons.
   39. OCF Posted: January 09, 2004 at 10:59 PM (#520452)
Inspired by the discussion of Joe Carter ...

The 1987 Indians are a useful object lesson in the importance of team OBP and the bad synergy of stacking several low-OBP sluggers (or semi-sluggers) together in the order. The Indians that year had a bad offense, finishing 3rd from the bottom of the league. Of the 9 players in the lineup, 4 of them (Brett Butler, Julio Franco, Brook Jacoby, and Pat Tabler) had OBP's that were .037 to .067 better than the league average of .332. The other 5, which includes the first baseman and 2/3 of the outfield (Joe Carter, Mel Hall, Cory Snyder, Bernazard/Hinzo, Bando/Dempsey/Allanson) had OBP's at least .023 worse than league average. It's fairly clear that 3 or 4 of the low-OBP hitters were stuffed back-to-back in the middle of the order. Carter was probably the first of the low-OBP bloc, so he had Butler and probably Franco in front of him. Carter's .264/.304/.480 with 32 HR then resulted in a team-leading 106 RBI. Brook Jacoby was by far the best hitter on the team that year - .300/.387/.541 - but he must have been batting 6th or 7th in the order behind the low-OBP bloc. Jacoby also had 32 HR but a pathetic 69 RBI. The cross-league comparison is Jacoby versus Tim Wallach. Jacoby .300/.387/.541 in 155 G, 32 HR, 69 RBI. Wallach .298/.343/.514 in 153 G, 26 HR, 123 RBI.

It matters who's batting in front of you.
   40. User unknown in local recipient table (Craig B) Posted: January 16, 2004 at 04:04 AM (#520457)
<i>OPS+ for Parker and Rice, 1975-1980

Cobra 148 132 144 166 141 116

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