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Hall of Merit
— A Look at Baseball's All-Time Best

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

2020 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion

2020 (December 2019)—elect 4

Top 10 Returning Players
Luis Tiant (263), Todd Helton (251), Kenny Lofton (217), Andruw Jones (201), Ben Taylor (196), Jeff Kent (188), Johan Santana (176), Wally Schang (153), Sammy Sosa (148), Lance Berkman (135)

Newly eligible players

Player Name	HOFm	HOFs	WAR	WAR7	JAWS	Jpos
Derek Jeter	337	67	72.4	42.4	57.4	55
Bobby Abreu	95	54	60	41.6	50.8	56.8
Jason Giambi	108	44	50.5	42.2	46.4	54.7
Cliff Lee	72	30	43.5	39.8	41.7	61.7
Rafael Furcal	54	32	39.4	30.7	35.1	55
Eric Chavez	29	25	37.5	31.1	34.3	55.7
Josh Beckett	43	23	35.7	31.2	33.4	61.7
Brian Roberts	34	24	30.4	28.1	29.2	56.9
Alfonso Soriano	105	31	28.2	27.3	27.8	53.6
Paul Konerko	80	36	27.7	21.5	24.6	54.7
Carlos Pena	25	18	25.1	24.1	24.6	54.7
Chone Figgins	18	19	22.2	22.5	22.3	55.7
Marco Scutaro	11	19	22.1	20.9	21.5	55
Raul Ibanez	38	27	20.4	20.1	20.2	53.6
Brad Penny	23	11	19.1	21.5	20.3	61.7
Jason Bartlett	15	5	18.3	19.6	18.9	55
Adam Dunn	75	32	17.4	17.7	17.6	53.6
Lyle Overbay	12	13	16.8	16.7	16.7	54.7
J.J. Putz	25	17	13.1	12.9	13	32.7
Jose Valverde	51	13	11.5	12	11.7	32.7
Ryan Ludwick	13	14	11.2	13.5	12.4	56.8
Alex Gonzalez	11	19	9.2	12.8	11	55
Jamey Wright	10	2	9.1	10.1	9.6	32.7
Joe Saunders	10	3	8.6	10.1	9.3	61.7
Heath Bell	31	13	7.1	8.9	8	32.7
Nate McLouth	10	12	6.4	10.2	8.3	57.8
Kyle Farnsworth	22	4	6.2	9.3	7.8	32.7

we’re alternating “elect 3” and “elect 4” years

2020, 2022, 2024, 2026, 2028, 2030, 2032, 2034, 2036-37, 2039, 2041 are elect 4

DL from MN Posted: January 23, 2019 at 01:21 PM | 321 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   201. Booey Posted: July 29, 2019 at 01:35 PM (#5866062)
flip
   202. Bleed the Freak Posted: July 29, 2019 at 01:50 PM (#5866068)
Hmmm, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Internet Explorer are not working for me, I'm familiar with your site and can get definitions on components elsewhere, but passing along for completeness sake.
   203. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 29, 2019 at 01:58 PM (#5866071)
Aah! I misunderstood your #198. Okay, yes, I'm seeing the errors you're getting. Thanks for pointing those out. I will fix them! Sorry about that. Please let me know if you see any other errors (I re-worked a LOT of files with this most recent release).
   204. Bleed the Freak Posted: July 29, 2019 at 04:58 PM (#5866126)
Hey, all! I've finally updated my Player won-lost records to incorporate Retrosheet's latest release. Here are details about the data currently available from Retrosheet (85 full seasons, including deduced games; 100 seasons with at least partial play-by-play data!).


Fantastic news and thanks for your yeoman's work on mining the data!

Have you had any gut checks on the impact of current eligibles?

Copying 2019 ballot submission, with latest numbers being unflattering from the doc on Ben Taylor's candidacy.

16. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 16, 2018 at 09:34 PM (#5798294)
I might as well move this to the Ballot Thread before I forget to (and FYI, that was an ordeal - the stupid Adidas thing hit about 4 times, then I had the problem of not being able to log in another 3 or 4 times; Ugh!). See comment #312 of the Discussion Thread for an expanded version of this. Let me know if I need to move any of that discussion over here to make this ballot official.

Here's my ballot.

1. Roy Halladay
2. Mariano Rivera
3. Cannonball Dick Redding
4. Tommy John
5. Ben Taylor
6. Wally Schang
7. Tommy Henrich
8. Dwight Gooden
9. Johnny Evers
10. Jorge Posada
11. Andy Pettitte
12. Johan Santana
13. Vern Stephens
14. Jeff Kent
15. Luis Tiant

First 11 out:

16. Don Newcombe
17. Urban Shocker
18. Orel Hershiser
19. Darryl Strawberry
20. Dave Concepcion
21. Bert Campaneris
22. Toby Harrah
23. Dizzy Dean
24. Andruw Jones
25. Gil Hodges
26. Lance Berkman

Other required disclosures:

Sammy Sosa - probably in my top 75 or so. Decent candidate. He looks much better in eWins (which are context-neutral) than pWins (which tie to team wins).

Kenny Lofton - he might sneak into my top 100. Baseball-Reference (and Fangraphs) overweight fielding in their WAR calculations. So, I tend to rate players with large fielding components to their WAR somewhat lower.

Buddy Bell - same story as Kenny Lofton but far more so. Honestly, he's not THAT much better than Harold Baines in my system - Baines was a better hitter, but Bell makes that up by playing third base and playing it very well. I think BB-Ref also has problems with their positional adjustments for 3B and SS in the 1970s (see my #'s 20-22 above).

Bobby Bonds - a step below Lofton (who's a step below Sosa, who's at least a step below Andruw Jones). My system doesn't like his fielding as much as BB-Ref.

Other debuts of note:

Roy Oswalt is probably in my top 30 or so.
Todd Helton ranks somewhere in the 100-125 range for me (between Lofton and Bonds). When you park-adjust his numbers, he just doesn't really distinguish himself from a bunch of other first basemen from this era. John Olerud, for example, shows up just ahead of Helton in my weighting system.
   205. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 29, 2019 at 05:21 PM (#5866134)
Have you had any gut checks on the impact of current eligibles?

Copying 2019 ballot submission, with latest numbers being unflattering from the doc on Ben Taylor's candidacy.


Hard to say exactly. I haven't really put together a revised prelim ballot. And it's hard to figure out exactly why some rankings changed. But a handful of first impressions.

Completely unrelated to my numbers, I do agree with Ben Taylor seems to have taken a bit of a hit. Somebody said "a lesser version of Eddie Murray". Now, I think highly of Eddie (he's my all-time favorite player and - trying to be unbiased - I probably view him as mid-tier HOM/HOF. But, that said, "a lesser version of Eddie Murray" could easily fall out of HOF/HOM consideration. I think the "he had no peak" argument I've heard against Murray is over-stated; he had a peak. But if you know his peak seasons down just a bit, then, yeah, he becomes a very peakless guy. Anyway, I had been expecting to slot Ben Taylor into an elect-me slot this year and now I'm hesitating.

Okay, on to my Player won-lost records. My stats continue to love Tommy John. You all are really missing the boat on him. Having elected Halladay and Rivera, I have John as the best eligible pitcher not in the Hall of Merit.

Vern Stephens, Jeff Kent, and Darryl Strawberry pop up higher than I was expecting them to. For Stephens, there's definitely the World War II issue at play. I think I'm also warming up more to Andruw Jones and Lance Berkman. Among the newly eligible, Jason Giambi also I think fits into this group. I've always had a preference for peak over career in my ballots and that's a bit more pronounced here in my first pass. That could be that I haven't quite optimized by WOPA vs. WORL weights with their new magnitudes.

Another guy who seems to have popped up higher into serious ballot consideration with this revision is Jack Clark. I'm not sure what to make of that yet.

We have more data on Urban Shocker and Kiki Cuyler and both of them seem to have benefited from that (and/or from my other changes). Retrosheet is still missing a lot of data in its earliest seasons, but extrapolating for missing data, I have Urban Shocker as the best player in 1919 not named Babe Ruth. That said, there's a LOT of extrapolation going on with Shocker that season (and in several other seasons). But he's certainly a guy who merits a long look.

Going the other direction, I'm becoming more open to the arguments against Posada (who I already dropped a bit in my final ballot last year than I think I had him the year before). If I had to guess right now, I'd guess he's going to fall off my ballot this year. But we'll see.
   206. Bleed the Freak Posted: July 29, 2019 at 06:08 PM (#5866158)
Much appreciated on the first impressions, planning to download the latest info and compare against what I had previously to see the personal biggest changes with your W-L records.
VERY busy with work and personal life, so I'm not sure how quickly, but looking forward consuming the new updates : )
   207. Bleed the Freak Posted: July 30, 2019 at 08:10 AM (#5866233)
The Wins and Losses like ok, but the OPA and ORL figures need to be re-calibrated on the season pages:
http://baseball.tomthress.com/StatTables/LeaguePlayers.php?y=1919&l=m&x=1

Once these are ready, will try to vet the new data, thanks!
   208. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 30, 2019 at 10:25 AM (#5866281)
Bleed, thanks for pointing out #207. Yeah, those numbers make no damn sense. Let me see if I can figure out what the hell I did wrong there.

EDIT: Okay, I think it's fixed. I needed to move a line lower in the program (like you care). Thanks for pointing that out, Bleed!
   209. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 02, 2019 at 10:26 AM (#5867644)
Kiko...In a different forum, I was trying to vouch for Andy Pettitte, noting that his B-R WAR is a low outlier compared with Baseball Gauge and your Win-Loss Records.

When I check today, I see Andy plummeted, and it looks like pitchers did in general...are you working out some bugs behind the scenes today?
Also looks like bat only guys have skyrocketed.

Thanks for your help.

   210. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 02, 2019 at 11:47 AM (#5867722)
Bleed,

Yeah, something weird is going on with my positional averages for pinch runners and pitchers starting in 1997 (which bleeds into pre-1997 numbers if you use multi-year positional averages). The only thing I can think of that ties to that timeline is that 1997 was the first season of inter-league play, so it must have something to do with that, although I can't figure out what could possibly be the problem (in my system, the league is defined by the league of the home team (or, more accurately, by whether the DH rule is in effect for the game) - so, starting in 1997, AL teams start playing some NL games and vice versa). I'm really, really hoping that I can figure this out and get it fixed this weekend. But I can't really promise when I'll get it fixed since I have to figure out how to fix it first.

Really sorry about that.

EDIT to add: If you set pitcher positional averages equal to 0.500 (the first pitcher option on any page where I give you the option to set positional averages - you have to also explicitly set the last two options equal to zero), that will "solve" the problem (for pitchers, not pinch runners, but screwing up pinch runners since 1997 is pretty damn trivial for a HOM debate). Doing that gives Andy Pettitte about 66 pWORL and 58 eWORL (which would be comparable to around 70 and 60 WAR, respectively).
   211. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 02, 2019 at 01:23 PM (#5867775)
Looks good now, thank you.

Default uber stat eligible leaders now...

1. Derek Jeter - 178.1
2. Vern Stephens - 131.7
3. Urban Shocker - 128.1
4. Tommy John - 128.1
5. Andy Pettitte - 124.5
6. Jeff Kent - 123.5
7. Darryl Strawberry - 121.6
8. Waite Hoyt - 121.4
9. Jason Giambi - 120.8
10. Kiki Cuyler - 120.0
11. Lance Berkman - 119.7
12. Herb Pennock - 119.4
13. Burleigh Grimes - 119.3
14. Andruw Jones - 119.1
15. Luis Tiant - 113.4
16. Jack Clark - 111.8
17. Ron Cey - 111.2
18. Amos Otis - 110.6
19. Gil Hodges - 110.3
20. George Foster - 110.2
21. Jorge Posada - 109.9

High vote getters:
Sammy Sosa - 105.0
Johan Santana - 99.1
Kenny Lofton - 86.4
Todd Helton - 85.0


   212. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 03, 2019 at 11:06 AM (#5867959)
I figured out and fixed the error in #210. Again, sorry about that. Please let me know if anybody finds anything else that looks weird and/or wrong. Thanks!
   213. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: August 04, 2019 at 01:15 PM (#5868178)
Here' the latest news on the Negro Leagues front. THE NLDB updated the other day, and it's a huge update. All my MLEs are now updated, and here's where you can find the latest MLE career lines.

A little bit of info on what's changed.

The biggest mover is Webster McDonald. We didn't have much early career info for him, and now we have a little bit in 1932. That's important because it extends his MLEable career back three years. It was also a fine season. We're suddenly showing him as a great pitcher who seems like a no-brainer. Well, not so fast. I'd prefer that we not jump to that or any conclusion yet despite having more than 1,000 MLEable innings for him. We are still missing several seasons of his seasons in the 1920s (ages 23, 24, 26, 27), and so far his twenties appear to have been better than his thirties when we have more data. A clinker of a year, especially at ages 23 and 24 could really change this view of him. Seriously, the jury is very much out on him.

Bill Byrd's case was also dinged a tiny bit in this update, so nothing helpful there. But Rosie Davis continues to look like someone we should be watching as more of a prime/career kind of candidate. Roy Welmaker who had been gaining via previous updates took a step back this time, and isn't looking as strong now.

Ben Taylor lost a tiny bit thanks to new 1922 numbers that aren't great. They look good superficially thanks to a high AVG, but his isolated walks and power are good not great. So there's not much I can say to help (or hurt) his cause.

Heavy Johnson and Hurley McNair both took small steps backwards. The haul of information didn't include much on Heavy and just a little more on Hurley. In neither case did we get anything definitive, but what we got isn't helping them step forward.

A big gainer was Newt Allen. He's not yet a strong candidate, but he's now over 50 MLE WAR. He's a below average hitter, slightly above average runner, and all-time amazing fielder. I wouldn't take the 246 rField too literally. It's well out of scale. But think of him as one of the very best defenders in the Negro Leagues' history.

Ray Dandridge neither gained nor lost any ground. We got some more information about Silvio Garcia, including some actual fielding data. Sadly, we only have a total of 43 fielding games for him, so while his defense so far looks good, it's too little to judge him as anything other than average for MLE reasons.

Sam Bankhead is someone we might want to talk about a bit. He's a long career shortstop with slightly positive batting (+29), great Baserunning (+42), and very good defense (+79). It adds up to 32 WAA and 68 WAR thanks to the positional runs. The reason we should talk about him is that (a) he's got the numbers of a good candidate, but (b) it's worth discussing whether we trust the MLE Baserunning and fielding numbers as much as the hitting numbers and what that means to his candidacy.

BTW: Candidate Bus Clarkson was not affected at all by this update, so there's nothing additional to share about him.
   214. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 05, 2019 at 08:01 PM (#5868573)
 212. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 03, 2019 at 11:06 AM (#5867959)
I figured out and fixed the error in #210. Again, sorry about that. Please let me know if anybody finds anything else that looks weird and/or wrong. Thanks!


I keep playing around with the weighted leaders as I want a leaderboard ~1499 players deep instead of the default 500, but no matter what I try, I get wonky results.

Link to a trial, I cut off in the middle to keep the thread page from expanding to far:
http://baseball.tomthress.com/Leaders/UberLeaders.php?y1=1919&y2=2018&w0;=.25&w5=0&wl=0&ws;=.75&p0=0.333333333333&p1=0.333333333333&p2=0.333333333333&p=.3333&e=.6666666&w=0&a=1.5&r=1&na=0&nr=0&c=1.15&b1=1&b2=1&b3=1&ss=1&
lf=1&cf=1&rf=1&dh=1&ph=1&pr=1&o1=1&sp=1&rp=1&psw=1&psa=1&psr=1>=162&ga=1&n=1499

What do I need to tweak in this?
Parameters I was aiming at:
Trying to weight 1 year 25%, 9 years 75%, p wins 33.3%, e wins 66.6%, zeroing out below replacement seasons, extrapolating missing games, neutralizing scheduled to 162 games, top 1499 results.

Thank you :)
   215. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 05, 2019 at 11:26 PM (#5868646)
Jeeze! I'm sorry. I can't believe how many of these little things are popping up that I never noticed. I had a typo where I was double-counting the weight on "long-run" positional averages and not including the 9-year (the two errors cancelled out if I gave those two things the same weight, which apparently I ALWAYS did when I was testing this).

Beyond that, Bleed, I don't know if this was just a typo in your copying this or if this is an error in your link. But the link you have in #214 has three typos in it. There are two random semi-colons that don't belong (splitting up "w0=" and "ws=") and what should say ">=162" says ">=162". If I fix those things, I get a set of numbers which, having corrected the typo I mentioned in the first paragraph, look pretty reasonable to me. It's a really, really complicated query, so I can't SWEAR there isn't anything else wrong with it. But as far as I know, things should hopefully work now.

Really, really sorry.

   216. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 06, 2019 at 11:14 AM (#5868714)
Bleed, I just noticed I made a typo in pointing out one of the typos in #214 - it should say "what should say '>=162' says '>=162'". And again, really sorry about all of these problems.
   217. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 06, 2019 at 12:08 PM (#5868753)
Worked like a charm, thanks : )

The tweaked ratings now, fellas we should put in our consideration set (excludes any MLE bonuses)...

1. Derek Jeter - 163.7
2. Tommy John - 127.8
3. Vern Stephens - 127.5
4. Andy Pettitte - 126.4
5. Andruw Jones - 121.0
6. Jeff Kent - 119.6
7. Lance Berkman - 119.4
8. Indian Bob Johnson - 118.8
9. Darryl Strawberry - 117.7
10. Jason Giambi - 117.1
11. Urban Shocker - 116.7
12. Jack Clark - 114.1
13. Kiki Cuyler - 114.1
14. Waite Hoyt - 113.9
15. Gil Hodges - 112.5
16. Toby Harrah - 112.2
17. Jorge Posada - 111.3
18. Luis Tiant - 110.9
19. Herb Pennock - 110.7
20. Sammy Sosa - 109.3
21. David Wells - 107.5
22. Roy Oswalt - 107.3
23. Burleigh Grimes - 106.3
24. Schoolboy Rowe - 106.2
25. Ron Cey - 105.9
26. Tony Perez - 105.5
27. George Foster - 105.4
28. Tony Lazzeri - 105.1
29. Bert Campaneris - 104.8
30. Orel Hershiser - 103.6

Returnees with 3 or more votes in 2019 balloting:
Johan Santana - 101.9
Bobby Bonds - 99.2
Sal Bando - 97.1
Kevin Appier - 92.5
Tommy Bridges - 89.4
Todd Helton - 88.7
Kenny Lofton - 88.6
Bucky Walters - 88.4
Thurman Munson - 79.3
Don Newcombe - 68.6
Phil Rizzuto - 68.2
Buddy Bell - 67.0

Kiko, have pitchers become too devalued in this structure, and do you give any adjustment to catchers?
I would expect Santana to feature near the top of this list.
Other catcher ratings: Ernie Lombardi 92.6, Gene Tenace 92.5, Darrell Porter 89.8, then Thurman.
   218. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 06, 2019 at 12:17 PM (#5868763)
Ran out of time to edit post, regarding Santana, 11 pitchers rank ahead of him, maybe this is a case of realistically placing a greater weight on WOPA versus WORL.
Same issue hits Dwight Gooden (101.2), Sandy Koufax (95.5!) and Dizzy Dean (94.5).
   219. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 06, 2019 at 01:27 PM (#5868816)
Kiko, have pitchers become too devalued in this structure, and do you give any adjustment to catchers? I would expect Santana to feature near the top of this list.


My default gives catchers a 15% boost (the c=1.15 in your link in #214), which is lower than I've done in the past. I don't evaluate catchers for pitch calling or pitch framing or anything like that. Which leaves catchers with quite a bit less fielding value than at other positions (stolen bases aren't THAT important - and catchers share responsibility for those with pitchers anyway - and catchers are responsible for very few outs on balls in play). I liked an idea that I think DL had a page or two ago of double-counting catcher fielding. The problem I have with that is that there's no good reason to think that the part of fielding that I AM capturing (which is overwhelmingly throwing arm / ability to control the running game) is particularly strongly correlated with the part of fielding that I'm missing - game-calling, pitch framing, what have you (Mike Piazza is the obvious counter-example here; all indications are that he was a fine defensive catcher except for the fact that he couldn't throw out a basestealer to save his life).

Anyway, I could certainly see boosting catchers more than 15%. Using my default weights, I'm getting Yogi Berra as my top-ranked catcher at #26 overall with Johnny Bench at #32 and Mike Piazza at #43 (Carlton Fisk is #49, so I have 4 catchers in my top 50). If somebody wanted to argue that Berra and/or Bench should be in the top 15-20 overall, I'm not sure that I'd argue too strongly.

I don't think that pitchers have become any less valued than they were with my old numbers - maybe a little bit. Clemens and Maddux are now the top 2 pitchers (well, they've always been my top 2 pitchers) at #9 and #10 overall. I think they used to be closer to top-5, although some of that is we've added enough of Babe Ruth's career that he's shot up to #1 - and going back farther, Mel Ott, Lou Gehrig, and Ted Williams have also been steadily climbing in my stat as we get more and better data on their careers. Using my default weights, I have 5 pitchers in my top 20 (add Grove, Spahn, and Randy Johnson) and 7 in my top 30 (Seaver, Pedro). Of course, you can feel free to give pitchers a bit of a boost if you'd like (the sp=1&rp=1 in the link in #214).

As to Johan Santana, I think that my new uber-leaders structure probably does "devalue" him specifically by my having removed wins over star (WO*) as an option. Johan Santana's Hall-of-Fame case is almost precisely Sandy Koufax's case. Here's a comparison of the two using my default uber-weights. Koufax has two seasons (1963, 1965) better than any of Santana's seasons but Santana has a 6-7 year run as an elite pitcher versus 4-6 years for Koufax. Using my default weights, that puts Santana at #189 and Koufax at #206. Which, given that I have 100 years of data, at 2 HOMers per season would put both of them right around the in/out line. I think the reality is more like 3 HOM/HOFers per season, so top 200 of the past 100 years would likely get you in (assuming you just populated your HOM/HOF all at once; it's low enough that the indiosyncracies of year-by-year voting might affect one's admission).

My system does prefer pitchers who were less stars but more just solidly above average for longer - your Tommy John, Andy Pettitte, David Wells types - but I think that's always been true. I think it's one of the more interesting conclusions of my system: above-average starting pitching is extraordinarily helpful to winning baseball games (as a Cubs fan, I'd say the 2016 Cubs - and the 2017-19 Cubs to a lesser extent - are an excellent example of this).

EDIT: Re: your add-on in #218, Gooden, Koufax, and Dean are also hit by my having abandoned WO*. Which I go back and forth on. Basically, with the new weight on WOPA, the WO* values became much larger and I was worried about how sensitive it would therefore be to the weights people (including me) might be inclined to choose for it. But I do like the idea of giving some level of extra credit to Koufax's 1963, 1965, 1966 seasons and Gooden's 1985 season, et al.

   220. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 06, 2019 at 01:59 PM (#5868832)
You can actually approximate WO* using my weights. My idea for WO* was that the baseline for it was as far above average as replacement level is below average. So, WO* = WOPA - (WORL - WOPA), which, if you work through the math, WO* = 2*WOPA - WORL. My uber-weights pages will actually work with negative weights - although, be very, very careful about using negative weights. Anyway, if you leave everything else alone (so, 50% each pWins/eWins, including postseason, extrapolate games, +15% boost for catchers, et al.), zero out negative WOPA and WORL, and give them weights of 2 and -1, this is the list you get. Note, this won't zero out negative WO* (for seasons with positive WOPA and WORL). But, honestly, that list makes a lot of sense in terms of what I was trying to value with WO*.

Ruth and Bonds and still #1/2 - Ruth and Bonds are going to ALWAYS be #1/2, at least until we get more data for Honus Wagner, Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, and Cy Young. But Mickey Mantle slides up to #3. Jimmie Foxx slides into the top 10; Hank Aaron slides out. My top 3 catchers are now grouped at #24/25/26. Clayton Kershaw in #28; Mike Trout is #32 (neither of them have any average-ish but not really elite seasons that will show up negative here and push them back down yet). And, re: #217-#219, Johan Santana is #78; Sandy Koufax is #103; Dizzy Dean is #111; Dwight Gooden is #166 (he's being hurt here by my inability to zero out negative WO*). Whereas Tommy John is #275 - interestingly, he's just ahead of three consecutive Hall-of-Famers - Early Wynn, Waite Hoyt, and Paul Molitor. All of which makes sense: Wynn and Molitor weren't superstars for very long, they were just somewhere between pretty good and really good for a really long time.

Anyway, I'd be cautious giving negative weights. And I wouldn't use WO* as my sole measure anyway. But if you wanted to try to introduce a little bit of the idea behind WO* back into my uber-stat page, you can kind of do so.

Here's the same weights applied only to players eligible for the 2020 Hall-of-Merit ballot (with some adjustments for WW2 and segregation). Johan Santana is #3. Tommy John is #92.
   221. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 06, 2019 at 02:52 PM (#5868865)
My system does prefer pitchers who were less stars but more just solidly above average for longer your Tommy JohnAndy PettitteDavid Wells types but I think that's always been true. 


The evolution had been away from career to peakier types, but this was mostly stripped away with the latest round.
I'd note that Orel Hershiser and Jim Kaat (now 97.6) have taken some hits over time.

A key stat I pulled before the latest updates but after the 2018 corrections:
Tommy John - 156.7
Dizzy Dean - 156.5
Dwight Gooden - 148.7
Johan Santana - 140.7
Andy Pettitte - 139.4
Orel Hershiser - 133.7
Jim Kaat - 116.9
David Wells - 112.3

2017-2018 version:
Tommy John - 184.1
Andy Pettitte - 168.8
Dwight Gooden - 168.1
Johan Santana - 164.4
Dizzy Dean - 160.4
Orel Hershiser - 156.8
Jim Kaat - 136.3
David Wells - 132.9

2016-2017 flavor:
Tommy John - 191.7
Andy Pettitte - 159.5
Dizzy Dean - 158.2
Dwight Gooden - 155.1
Orel Hershiser - 150.3
Johan Santana - 143.1
Jim Kaat - 142.5
David Wells - 134.8

Early 2016:
Tommy John - 80.2
Andy Pettitte - 69.7
Jim Kaat - 65.5
Orel Hershiser - 64.3
David Wells - 60.8
Dwight Gooden - 55.0
Johan Santana - 51.8
Dizzy Dean - 49.0
   222. Qufini Posted: August 06, 2019 at 05:56 PM (#5868925)
practice post
   223. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 07, 2019 at 10:54 PM (#5869400)
Following up on my discussion with Bleed (#214 - #220), I put WO* back as an option in my HOM Ballot page (it's not on my "Uber-Stats" page that you can get to by clicking through various links on my website; just the special Hall-of-Merit version that's linked in this sentence). The default weight on WO* there is zero (as it also is for Wins) but you can feel free to use your own weight.

As a reminder, WO* is Wins Over Star, where "Star Level" is set exactly as far above average as replacement level is set below average (one standard deviation). The idea being that merely being average or even a little bit above average doesn't make one a "star" and being in the HOM or HOF is about being a "star" not just being pretty good for a long time. I'm not taking a position on that view; just explaining that I put WO* back to let people express that view using my statistic if they were so inclined.

In the past, I've tried to set my default weight so that the N-th best value in wins is the same as the N-th best value in WOPA, WORL, and WO* - the idea being I'm open-minded about HOW a player earned his HOM qualifications, although I think the effect has been a somewhat peak-heavy ballot. That will vary depending on your choice of N, but it looks like that would imply weights of something like .18, 1.7, 1.0, and 6.0 for wins, WOPA, WORL, and WO*, respectively, which would produce this as a 2020 Hall-of-Merit ballot (which really hurts my long-time favorite Tommy John - he's a WOPA/WORL guy much more than a WO* guy). Personally, I'm probably going to bump down the weight on WO* below that, although I'll probably end up giving it some weight (so, somewhere between 0 and 6). But that's just me. Give it whatever weight you'd like (although I would strongly suggest zeroing out negative WO* values - otherwise, you're reducing guys' HOM case not just for below-replacement or below-average seasons but for seasons that were above average, just not ENOUGH above average) (personally, I zero out all negative values - my view is a player's HOF/HOM case cannot get worse over time, but, again, that's just me).

Also, as a reminder, you can now choose how positional averages are calculated - one-year, 9-year, or long-run (or, I let you just use .500 for everybody, although I think doing so is probably a mistake), or a weighted average of these. My default is equal weights to 1-year, 9-year, and long-run (which is currently 100-year averages, 1919 - 2018). Personally, I still prefer one-year positional averages and will probably build my ballot around that, but that's personal preference and I've tried to let people make their own choices about the subjective stuff as much as possible.

And please let me know if anything you try to do looks wonky. I'm not aware of any errors, but that doesn't mean they aren't still out there. Thanks!
   224. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 09, 2019 at 03:54 PM (#5869934)
Thanks for sharing Kiko, can you also let WO* be an option for the default UBER stat, I annually or more frequently like to review my personal hall and I fold in your work here.
I'm looking to tweak your default for a bit more peak version, much appreciated : )
   225. Bleed the Freak Posted: August 09, 2019 at 06:39 PM (#5869992)
Thanks for the updates Doc, as a matter of record, sharing eligible players WAR+WAA and data completeness score per your 7-31 listing:

Webster McDonald - 106.5 / 100
Sam Bankhead - 99.9 / 104
Carlos Moran 3B - 97.6 / 99 - CF - 61.6 / 96
Heavy Johnson - 96.2 / 76
Hurley McNair - 95.2 / 86
Marvin Williams - 94.8 / 86
Conrado Marrero - 93.3 / 89
Roosevelt Davis - 90.4 / 88
Carl Glass - 90.2 / 46
Silvio Garcia - 89.4 / 91
Lazaro Salazar - 86.9 / 105
George Scales - 85.7 / 109
Ben Taylor - 85.6 / 128 - ouch
Ray Dandridge - 84.6 / 142
Newt Allen - 84.5 / 92
Don Newcombe - 83.3 / 142 - no war credit
Roy Welmaker - 83.0 / 110 - no war credit
Dave Barnhill - 82.7 / 98
Bunny Serrell - 82.4 / 107
Bus Clarkson - 82.1 / 115 - no war credit
   226. Kiko Sakata Posted: August 11, 2019 at 11:51 PM (#5870439)
Thanks for sharing Kiko, can you also let WO* be an option for the default UBER stat, I annually or more frequently like to review my personal hall and I fold in your work here.
I'm looking to tweak your default for a bit more peak version, much appreciated : )


Done. I also expanded my write-up of my uber-stat options which I hope folks here will find helpful - here.
   227. Esteban Rivera Posted: August 30, 2019 at 01:45 PM (#5875655)
Thanks to both Kiko and Dr. Chaleeko keep providing and adjusting. I'll dive into these adjustments and see how they change the evaluations I've been doing for my ballot.

A question for Dr. Chaleeko about the MLE's. I did a summary of the three values I downloaded from your site (original MLEs, the June adjustments and the most recent August adjustments). The main adjustments you did in June for batters were related mainly to the elimination of the length of schedule buffer, changes in the park factors and the strength of schedule adjustments used, and the use of new moving average routines. You had previously mentioned in this thread (back in the dialogue about the length of schedule buffer and its impact) that roughly it would be about a -13.2% adjustment to the initial MLEs (granted that it would vary on a case by case basis how much the adjustment would be). In the final adjustments not everybody went down, some went up. I'm guessing this is likely due to a combination of the changes in park factor, strength of schedule and rolling averages. Is this correct? Do the changes in park factors impact fielding in the MLEs?

The reason I ask is because I find it interesting seeing who went up and trying to be sure of why (an example being Louis Santop going up while most of the catchers were adjusted down or remained relatively steady).


NAME POS WAR original WAR June adj. WAR August adj.
GIBSON, JOSH C 92.4 85.3 84.1
MACKEY, BIZ C 58.3 51.4 52.6
CAMPANELLA, ROY C 53.0 50.1 50.1
TROUPPE, QUINCY C 52.5 46.9 45.8
SANTOP, LOUIS C 48.9 52.8 52.8
CASH, BILL C 37.7 36.4 36.4
GARCIA, REGINO C 35.2 35.8 35.8
HOWARD, ELSTON C 32.8 32.7 32.7
WILEY, DOC C 31.5 27.2 27.0
DUKES, TOMMIE C 29.3 25.6 25.4
GREENE, JOE C 24.1 23.4 23.4
PETWAY, BRUCE C 19.9 23.0 23.0

Or how most second basemen that are mainly minor league or MLB stats in their datasets (such as Jackie Robinson, Marvin Williams and Jim Gilliam) show increases (where I would have assumed the stated adjustments would have had less of an impact on them).
   228. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: September 03, 2019 at 08:25 PM (#5876569)
Esteban, you are right that it’s the combination of everything that really makes the most difference. The reason why the guys who spent less time in the NGLs went up is most likely that they got more emphasis on their full-year seasons in the new system of averaging.
   229. Kiko Sakata Posted: October 20, 2019 at 02:38 PM (#5892340)
Okay, I have completed a project that I hinted at a couple of times and which segues perfectly from the conversation started by Esteban Rivera in #118 here. I have modified my website so that you can choose your own positional averages in evaluating my Player won-lost records. Not literally, typing in a different number for every position for every year, but there are four options: 0.500, 1-year avgs, 9-year avgs, and long-run avgs, and you can do a weighted average of any combination of those. I also allow three options for pitching: 0.500, starters and relievers different based on comparing all starters to all relievers, and starters and relievers different based at looking only at pitchers who did both. A very brief explanation is here. Options for picking your weights should be near the top of any page which displays or uses positional averages.

I think I've updated everything except for some of the leader pages and I tried to set everything up so that once you choose a set of weights, they'll transfer with you between pages (i.e., if you pick a set of weights for a player, those weights will stay in effect if you click on one of his teams or if you compare him to another player; the weights will revert back to normal if you go back to my homepage). Please let me know if you see any problems, though; it was a lot to update and it's possible that I missed something.

I've also written a 50-page essay(*) that looks at positional averages and talks about some other factors in using my Player won-lost records to compare players. This is a PDF (I thought that might be easier to download and read off-line; also, it has a bunch of graphs and I'm not sure how best to do graphs in HTML) and can be found here.

(*) - I don't know if "essay" is the right word. It's shorter than a book but longer than an article. The term "treatise" seemed pretentious. In terms of length/content, it's basically a chapter of a book, but that seems like a weird thing to call it since it's not part of a larger book (yet).

Finally, here's a special version of my "Uber-Stats" page that can be used for Hall-of-Merit voting - the main advantage here is that it excludes anybody who's ineligible (either because they're already in the Hall of Merit or because they haven't been retired long enough). I would suggest reading the 50-page PDF to better understand how you might want to use this, but feel free to just type in some numbers and see what pops out.


The above quote was a post of mine back on February 13th. Since then, I've re-worked the way I calculate positional averages (so that they are now on the same scale as BB-Ref, Fangraphs, et al.). There has also been a Retrosheet data release in June (1919-33 partial data, 1934-2018 full play-by-play). So, I have revised the "essay" mentioned in the above quote to reflect both of these facts. It's now 53 pages and can be found here.

I also wanted to re-share the link in the last paragraph there (it was originally on the word "here's"), which lets you construct a Hall of Merit ballot using my Player won-lost records - although, caveat: this will only include players for whom Retrosheet has released play-by-play data, so no Negro Leaguers or pre-1919 players. Anyway, that link is here. It also won't add non-MLB credit (e.g., WW2) - although it will discount WW2 MLB play (and pre-integration play) if desired.
   230. DL from MN Posted: November 06, 2019 at 10:06 AM (#5899048)
I received notice today that Yahoo is changing how groups work. I think they are going to take down all of the files shared on the Yahoo Groups Hall of Merit site and turn it into essentially a group email list.

Dear Group Moderators and Members,

Thank you for your commitment to Yahoo and for helping us define the power of digital communities. Eighteen years ago, we combined the functionality of a site called eGroups.com with a precursor community platform called Yahoo Clubs to launch Yahoo Groups. Since then, you and millions of others have helped prove our hypothesis, by creating and joining more than 10 Million groups.

A lot has changed about the Internet since 2001, including the ways most people now use Yahoo Groups. Today, most Yahoo Groups activity happens in your email inbox, not on the bulletin boards where Yahoo Groups started in the pre-smartphone age. Increasingly, people want content and connections coming directly to them, and this is why we continue to invest in Yahoo Mail -- including the recent launch of a new Yahoo Mail app that is currently the highest-rated email app in the App Store and Google Play.

So, as our users’ habits have evolved, we have begun the process of evolving our approach to help active Yahoo Groups thrive and migrate to our email platform. To help you plan for these changes, below is the schedule of how this transition will happen.

Beginning October 28, 2019:
Users will be able to join a Yahoo Group only through an invite from the Group Moderator or by submitting a request to join a Group, which requires approval by the Group Moderator.
Since we are moving Group communication from posting on message boards to email distribution, uploading and hosting of new content will also be disabled on the Yahoo Groups website.

Beginning December 14, 2019:
All Groups will be made private and any content that was previously uploaded via the website will be removed. We believe privacy is critical and made this decision to better align with our overall principles.
If you would like to keep any of the content you’ve posted or stored in the past within your Yahoo Group, please download it by December 14 by accessing this link.

As these dates get closer, we will send follow-up reminders. More information about the upcoming changes can be found here.

While this evolution of Yahoo Groups is inspired by how we see the platform being used today, we know change can be difficult. Here are a few important facts as we make this transition:

1. Yahoo Groups is not going away - We know that our users are deeply passionate about connecting around shared interests, and we are evolving Groups to better align with how you use it today.

2. New groups can still be formed - Users can continue to connect with others around their common bonds and interests. From animal rescues to sporting and activity groups, civic organizations to local PTAs, members of our Yahoo Groups will remain connected and able to share their activities and interests. All of the content that you have shared previously on the website, can continue to be shared via email.

We know that Yahoo Groups is an important online extension of your real-life group of friends, interests and communities, and we are committed to supporting communities that rely on Yahoo Groups. Thanks for coming along with us this far. We look forward to seeing where the technology -- and you -- take us in the decades to come.

Sincerely,
The Groups Team
   231. rwargo Posted: November 19, 2019 at 01:44 PM (#5902379)
Interestingly, we have done pretty well with electing Negro League players. With the substantial new data, here is a list of the top 30 players, taking all data in the database, including Cuban and Mexican leagues. They are still missing some data, but what they have is a lot. (Note, I take the best out of total WAA, OffWAA, or PitWAA).

1. 56.4 - Oscar Charleston
2. 43.9 - Josh Gibson
3. 40.1 - Cristobal Torriente
4. 40.0 - Bullet Rogan
5. 38.0 - Willie Wells
6. 35.7 - Satchel Paige
7. 33.6 - Joe Williams
8. 33.5 - John Henry Lloyd
9. 32.4 - Turkey Stearnes
10. 32.2 - Pete Hill
11. 31.2 - Jud Wilson

HOMers all, and pretty easily for each.

12. 29.8 - Ray Brown
13. 27.7 - Martin Dihigo
14. 27.6 - Jose Mendez
15. 25.0 - Dobie Moore
16. 24.4 - Dick Lundy
17. 23.7 - Mule Suttles
18. 23.4 - Buck Leonard
19. 23.3 - Cool Papa Bell

Again, all HOMers, most took a bit to be elected.

20. 23.2 - Carlos Moran
21. 22.0 - Juan Padron

First two non HOMers. Moran has gotten some support, Padron none. Moran has time in Cuban Leagues, Padron has little Cuban time in the database. He is also the only pitcher with more than 19.1 pitching WAA we haven't elected. All but Rube Foster are over that threshhold. We should revisit both Moran and Padron.

22. 21.0 - Willie Foster

This HOMers keeps rising with new releases, and 1926, 1932 data for him still need to be added. I suspect the top 20 WAA will all be HOMers soon.

23. 20.9 - Bill Byrd

Has received no support, 20.9 total, 3.5 hitting, 17.7 pitching.

24. 20.1 - John Beckwith

Elected to HOM after some time.

25. 19.2 - Ben Taylor

Not elected yet, but highest available player left other than Moran.

26. 19.1 - William Bell

No support from us, 19.1 total, 0.6 hit, 0.2 field, 18.4 pitch

27. 19.1 - Dick Redding

We just elected him to the HOM.

28. 18.8 - Nip Winters

Overlooked?

29. 18.7 - Grant Johnson
30. 18.1 - Willard Brown
31. 17.1 - Biz Mackey

All elected to HOM, Mackey of course has catcher issues.

Who is missing among our elected HOM players? Only 5.5 players, each with reasons why they are not higher.

62. 10.6 - Alejandro Oms - may have some missing Cuban data, but might be a mistake.

65. 10.1 - Louis Santop - Actually the third best catcher behind Gibson and Mackey, and the 1910s data is more sparse than the 20s and 30s.

7.9 - Monte Irvin - I stopped ranking by WAA below 10. Irvin of course has MLB experience.

5.7 - Rube Foster - Still hurt by lack of turn of the century data.

4.9 - Quincy Trouppe - Not as much in the US, starting to get some Mexican league data.

1.0 - Frank Grant - Little data.

Other players

32. 16.7 - Hurley McNair
33. 16.7 - Heavy Johnson
34. 16.5 - Hilton Smith
35. 16.2 - Carlos Royer
36. 15.4 - Webster McDonald
37. 15.3 - Leon Day
38. 15.1 - George Scales

Some support from us over the years for most, except Royer and McDonald (just elected to Hall of Miller and Eric)

Out of top 31, we are only missing players Carlos Moran and Ben Taylor. We are only missing pitchers Juan Padron, Bill Byrd, William Bell, and Nip Winters
   232. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 20, 2019 at 03:14 PM (#5902710)
I’ll be posting the latest MLE information I have on current candidates as soon as possible. There’s rumor to the effect that a final seaon’s worth of NGL data could be made available prior to our vote. I’m holding out until I know for sure to avoid duplication of work in addition to confusing posts updating one another. The career-WAR lines on my site are not updated through the most recent releases on the NLDB: 1937 NNL, 1930 NNL, and 1930 IND (specially the Grays and the Lincoln Giants in this third update). I should warn you that we may have a stealth candidate on our hands that we haven’t had serious discussions about previously so be ready.
   233. cookiedabookie Posted: November 20, 2019 at 04:03 PM (#5902741)
I'm curious if we need to add more NgL players. What % of NgL players are in the HoM vs. % of MLB players in the HoM? Should we adjust for the fact that the league was comprised of a smaller % of the population as a whole vs. MLB at that time? I feel like we have a lot of NgL players already, maybe too many, but I don't have the numbers to back that feeling up.
   234. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 20, 2019 at 04:55 PM (#5902757)
I will let others argue your point cookie, and I’m potentially sympathetic to it or at least to someone answering the question with some study of the representation of that period compared to other eras. But there are Negro Leaguers getting votes, so it seems important to post the latest information for those players.
   235. rwargo Posted: November 21, 2019 at 11:28 AM (#5902932)
A bit easier to see, top 38 players in WAA from the Seamheads database through yesterday. Listed is the top number of either total, batting, fielding (Bingo DeMoss!), or pitching WAA. I'm also extending to everyone over 10 WAA.

HOM - 1. 56.4 - Oscar Charleston (HOF)
HOM - 2. 43.9 - Josh Gibson (HOF)
HOM - 3. 40.1 - Cristobal Torriente (HOF)
HOM - 4. 40.0 - Bullet Rogan (HOF)
HOM - 5. 38.0 - Willie Wells (HOF)
HOM - 6. 35.7 - Satchel Paige (HOF)
HOM - 7. 33.6 - Joe Williams (HOF)
HOM - 8. 33.5 - John Henry Lloyd (HOF)
HOM - 9. 32.4 - Turkey Stearnes (HOF)
HOM - 10. 32.2 - Pete Hill (HOF)
HOM - 11. 31.2 - Jud Wilson (HOF)
HOM - 12. 29.8 - Ray Brown (HOF)
HOM - 13. 27.7 - Martin Dihigo (HOF)
HOM - 14. 27.6 - Jose Mendez (HOF)
HOM - 15. 25.0 - Dobie Moore
HOM - 16. 24.4 - Dick Lundy
HOM - 17. 23.7 - Mule Suttles (HOF)
HOM - 18. 23.4 - Buck Leonard (HOF)
HOM - 19. 23.3 - Cool Papa Bell (HOF)
20. 23.2 - Carlos Moran
21. 22.0 - Juan Padron
HOM - 22. 21.0 - Willie Foster (HOF)
23. 20.9 - Bill Byrd
HOM - 24. 20.1 - John Beckwith
25. 19.2 - Ben Taylor (HOF)
26. 19.1 - William Bell
HOM - 27. 19.1 - Dick Redding
28. 18.8 - Nip Winters
HOM - 29. 18.7 - Grant Johnson
HOM - 30. 18.1 - Willard Brown (HOF)
HOM - 31. 17.1 - Biz Mackey (HOF)
32. 16.7 - Hurley McNair
33. 16.7 - Heavy Johnson
34. 16.5 - Hilton Smith (HOF)
35. 16.2 - Carlos Royer
36. 15.4 - Webster McDonald
37. 15.3 - Leon Day (HOF)
38. 15.1 - George Scales
39. 14.3 - Leroy Matlock
40. 14.0 - Wild Bill Wright
41. 13.9 - Rap Dixon
42. 13.8 - Dolf Luque
43. 13.7 - Jose Munoz
44. 13.6 - Rats Henderson
45. 13.6 - Ted Trent
46. 13.4 - Jose Junco
47. 13.2 - Julian Castillo
48. 12.9 - Sam Streeter
49. 12.9 - Dave Brown
50. 12.9 - Barney Brown
51. 12.9 - Bill Holland
52. 12.8 - Red Ryan
53. 12.0 - Sam Bankhead
54. 11.9 - Andy Cooper (HOF)
55. 11.8 - Johnny Wright
56. 11.6 - Charlie "Chino" Smith
57. 11.6 - Bill Pettus
58. 11.1 - Charlie Blackwell
59. 11.1 - Bingo DeMoss
60. 10.9 - Dave Barnhill
61. 10.6 - Eustaquio Pedroso
HOM - 62. 10.6 - Alejandro Oms
63. 10.3 - Roy Partlow
64. 10.2 - Newt Allen
HOM - 65. 10.1 - Louis Santop (HOF)
66. 10.1 - Nelson Dean

Notable without 10WAA

9.5 - Judy Johnson (HOF)
HOM - 7.9 - Monte Irvin (HOF)
HOM - 6.8 - Larry Doby (HOF)
HOM - 5.7 - Rube Foster (HOF)
HOM - 4.9 - Quincy Trouppe
3.9 - Ray Dandridge (HOF)
HOM - 3.3 - Roy Campanella (HOF)
HOM - 2.8 - Minnie Minoso
HOM - 1.5 - Jackie Robinson (HOF)
HOM - 1.0 - Frank Grant (HOF)
0.6 - Sol White (HOF)
   236. Howie Menckel Posted: November 21, 2019 at 11:39 AM (#5902937)
just simplifying - no HOF nor HOM

20. 23.2 - Carlos Moran
21. 22.0 - Juan Padron
23. 20.9 - Bill Byrd
26. 19.1 - William Bell
28. 18.8 - Nip Winters
   237. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 21, 2019 at 01:48 PM (#5902986)
20. 23.2 - Carlos Moran
21. 22.0 - Juan Padron
23. 20.9 - Bill Byrd
26. 19.1 - William Bell
28. 18.8 - Nip Winters

Wanted to take a moment to address Carlos Moran. He’s gotten support in these parts in the past. As best I can tell, Moran was a left handed third baseman. When you create an MLE you have to make certain decisions, and this is one case with an interesting decision. Moran can be MLE’d as a 3B, he looks good if you do. And he would not have played 3B in the majors. No way. He had a little speed and played a little CF, so I also MLE’d him there. CF was a much more offense oriented position at the time and 3B less so than now. Which means that Moran’ value gets hit hard by that change in position. He also wasn’t as good a CF as an 3B. He goes from a 60ish WAR 3B to about a 45-50 WAR CF.

Now this is where everyone gets to have their own interpretation of the MLE. You can say that value is value whether he played a LH 3B or not. You can decide that LH 3B is too far out of norm, and you prefer the CF MLE (my position on it). There’s probably a compromise position as well. But his candidacy has a big asterisk beside it.

Among those other four players, Byrd probably has the best credentials, and they are weaker than guys like Rosie Davis or Webster McDonald (among pitchers). Byrd is like a weak-tea version of Andy Pettitte: Pitched forever but had even less peak. I am not opposed to Pettitte’s candidacy at all, but he’s clearly a bottom tier HoMer. So Byrd is even weaker yet.

There’s one other thing to say. When you lost off the WAA and WAR from the NLDB, you should, as a best practice, also list the IP or PAs. A lot of these guys will appear higher on these lists or lower based on the amount of documented playing time they have. Some players may have every season document and still have lower numbers of PAs or playing time than you’d think because their teams played an Indy sked. Look at the Monarchs prior to the NAL for an example. It’s helpful to look at WAA as a rate against playing time and also to know how many seasons of data you’re twirling with. Dobie Moore has only five seasons of data, but over 2,000 PA. Other guys might have 2,000 PA in ten seasons. Things remain variable and perhaps always will be.

On top of that, the quality of play varied from league to league and, sometimes, season to season. That means that the career values you see are not adjusted for league quality. Just a lot of threads to keep inside the dude’s head, you know?
   238. Mike Webber Posted: November 21, 2019 at 02:15 PM (#5902998)
HOM - 17. 23.7 - Mule Suttles (HOF)
HOM - 18. 23.4 - Buck Leonard (HOF)
HOM - 19. 23.3 - Cool Papa Bell (HOF)


I'm glad Cool Papa has stats now that put him at the end of the in/out line. I know he has been mentioned as a HOM "mistake" but it now appears he belongs.

Maybe he's the Enos Slaughter of the HOM Negro Leaguers, the guy that you need to be obviously better than to get in.

(During the Frank Frisch Vet committee era, Frisch basically used Slaughter as the in out line. Frankie didn't think Slaughter should be a HOFer, and when a player came up, his evaluation was usually framed as "better than Slaughter/not as good as Slaughter).
   239. Michael J. Binkley's anxiety closet Posted: November 21, 2019 at 02:58 PM (#5903011)
Mike Webber-

I believe the stats show that Cool Papa Bell is still well below the line. The numbers you reference are the straight raw totals from the Negro Leagues compared NgL average, unadjusted for league strength and standard deviation to create an MLE, using what has been documented on Seamheads.

In his new MLE's, Eric Chalek has included a data+ score, which is how complete of a record Seamheads has for a player's career, with 100 being average. Bell has a data+ of 124, meaning that Bell has a 24% more complete record than the average Negro Leaguer through history, which inflates his raw total shown above. Combine this with Bell's extra-lengthy career, Eric's MLE results in only 51.4 WAR and 14.5 WAA, which hardly seem HoM-worthy.
   240. Mike Webber Posted: November 21, 2019 at 03:29 PM (#5903019)
Michael J. - Thanks for the clarification, I understand the data better now. I see he has almost double the documented games of Suttles and Leonard who are next to him on the list.
   241. rwargo Posted: November 22, 2019 at 03:52 PM (#5903261)
Sure, here are the PA/IP for everyone:

HOM - 1. 56.4 - Oscar Charleston (HOF) - 6697 - 170.1
HOM - 2. 43.9 - Josh Gibson (HOF) - 3751 - 1.2
HOM - 3. 40.1 - Cristobal Torriente (HOF) - 4703 - 402
HOM - 4. 40.0 - Bullet Rogan (HOF) - 2426 - 1535
HOM - 5. 38.0 - Willie Wells (HOF) - 5224 - 0.2
HOM - 6. 35.7 - Satchel Paige (HOF) - 680 - 1527.2
HOM - 7. 33.6 - Joe Williams (HOF) - 1111 - 2201.1
HOM - 8. 33.5 - John Henry Lloyd (HOF) - 5693 - 0
HOM - 9. 32.4 - Turkey Stearnes (HOF) - 3926 - 0
HOM - 10. 32.2 - Pete Hill (HOF) - 4185 - 13
HOM - 11. 31.2 - Jud Wilson (HOF) - 4524 - 0
HOM - 12. 29.8 - Ray Brown (HOF) - 1470 - 1537.2
HOM - 13. 27.7 - Martin Dihigo (HOF) - 2981 - 781
HOM - 14. 27.6 - Jose Mendez (HOF) - 2396 - 1833.2
HOM - 15. 25.0 - Dobie Moore - 2381
HOM - 16. 24.4 - Dick Lundy - 3813 - 0.2
HOM - 17. 23.7 - Mule Suttles (HOF) - 3561 - 16.0
HOM - 18. 23.4 - Buck Leonard (HOF) - 2794
HOM - 19. 23.3 - Cool Papa Bell (HOF) - 6157 - 310.1
20. 23.2 - Carlos Moran - 2621 - 0
21. 22.0 - Juan Padron - 592 - 1387.1
HOM - 22. 21.0 - Willie Foster (HOF) - 700 - 1632.2
23. 20.9 - Bill Byrd - 899 - 1396.2
HOM - 24. 20.1 - John Beckwith - 2528 - 22.1
25. 19.2 - Ben Taylor (HOF) - 4250 - 282
26. 19.1 - William Bell - 777 - 1469.2
HOM - 27. 19.1 - Dick Redding - 1059 - 2241.2
28. 18.8 - Nip Winters - 877 - 1461.2
HOM - 29. 18.7 - Grant Johnson - 1790 - 6.2
HOM - 30. 18.1 - Willard Brown (HOF) - 1995 - 0
HOM - 31. 17.1 - Biz Mackey (HOF) - 4334 - 20.1
32. 16.7 - Hurley McNair - 3462 - 122.1
33. 16.7 - Heavy Johnson - 2128 - 3.0
34. 16.5 - Hilton Smith (HOF) - 503 - 1027.2
35. 16.2 - Carlos Royer - 728 - 1284
36. 15.4 - Webster McDonald - 521 - 1207.1
37. 15.3 - Leon Day (HOF) - 723 - 709.1
38. 15.1 - George Scales - 3431 - 8.0
39. 14.3 - Leroy Matlock - 448 - 1237
40. 14.0 - Wild Bill Wright - 2364 - 0
41. 13.9 - Rap Dixon - 2492 - 5.0
42. 13.8 - Dolf Luque - 627 - 901
43. 13.7 - Jose Munoz - 1119 - 1789.1
44. 13.6 - Rats Henderson - 491 - 1118.1
45. 13.6 - Ted Trent - 514 - 1334.2
46. 13.4 - Jose Junco - 758 - 1113
47. 13.2 - Julian Castillo - 1958 - 13
48. 12.9 - Sam Streeter - 642 - 1466.1
49. 12.9 - Dave Brown - 415 - 1008
50. 12.9 - Barney Brown - 1058 - 1290.2
51. 12.9 - Bill Holland - 836 - 1942
52. 12.8 - Red Ryan - 586 - 1377.1
53. 12.0 - Sam Bankhead - 3705 - 2.0
54. 11.9 - Andy Cooper (HOF) - 650 - 1610.2
55. 11.8 - Johnny Wright - 258 - 625.1
56. 11.6 - Charlie "Chino" Smith - 1119 - 0
57. 11.6 - Bill Pettus - 1680 - 3.2
58. 11.1 - Charlie Blackwell - 2375 - 0
59. 11.1 - Bingo DeMoss - 3575 - 0
60. 10.9 - Dave Barnhill - 282 - 584.1
61. 10.6 - Eustaquio Pedroso - 2848 - 2209
HOM - 62. 10.6 - Alejandro Oms - 2059 - 32
63. 10.3 - Roy Partlow - 412 - 636
64. 10.2 - Newt Allen - 4074 - 0.2
HOM - 65. 10.1 - Louis Santop (HOF) - 1969 - 0
66. 10.1 - Nelson Dean - 315 - 750.1

Notable without 10WAA

9.5 - Judy Johnson (HOF) - 4307 - 4.1
HOM - 7.9 - Monte Irvin (HOF) - 1200 - 0
HOM - 6.8 - Larry Doby (HOF) - 642 - 0
HOM - 5.7 - Rube Foster (HOF) - 663 - 983.1
HOM - 4.9 - Quincy Trouppe - 1394 - 9.1
3.9 - Ray Dandridge (HOF) - 1587 - 0
HOM - 3.3 - Roy Campanella (HOF) - 876 - 15.1
HOM - 2.8 - Minnie Minoso - 550 - 0
HOM - 1.5 - Jackie Robinson (HOF) - 116 - 0
HOM - 1.0 - Frank Grant (HOF) - 234 - 0
0.6 - Sol White (HOF) - 323 - 0

Overall, I was surprised that so many of our selections top the raw numbers. Also, I was surprised at the amount of data. I agree there are league quality issues that need to be thought through. Go to Seamheads to take a look at more data.

   242. DL from MN Posted: November 22, 2019 at 04:15 PM (#5903277)
I still think our biggest NGL mistake is Willard Brown.
   243. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 22, 2019 at 06:20 PM (#5903314)
I'm curious if we need to add more NgL players. What % of NgL players are in the HoM vs. % of MLB players in the HoM? Should we adjust for the fact that the league was comprised of a smaller % of the population as a whole vs. MLB at that time? I feel like we have a lot of NgL players already, maybe too many, but I don't have the numbers to back that feeling up.


I'd like to repeat this question from cookiedabookie @ 233. Negro Leaguers are well outside my area of expertise, so I'm very much left deferring to others. And my first read of the data in post 241 is that, while the HOM didn't necessarily do a perfect job of picking the top X Negro Leaguers (I think I count 30 if I ignore Irvin and everybody who played more in the integrated MLB than him), they haven't clearly missed anybody below the top 20-30, outside of maybe Ben Taylor and several players whose records here are still very spotty. If the "ideal number" of Negro Leaguers is, say, 50, then I think certainly Taylor and probably others warrant serious consideration. But if the "ideal number" of Negro Leaguers is only 25-30, then maybe nobody really warrants all that much consideration - my inclination is to wait for more data before committing to voting for Moran, Padron, and Byrd.

I know that's not the right way to look at these players. Certainly, we shouldn't pick a "quota" of Negro Leaguers and leave it at that. But I don't have a really good feel for how well-represented the Negro Leagues currently are in the Hall of Merit relative to how well represented they probably "should" be.
   244. Bleed the Freak Posted: November 22, 2019 at 09:40 PM (#5903355)
With the same number of electees as Cooperstown, the Hall of Miller and Eric opted to elect the following non HOMers:

Marvin Williams
Webster McDonald
Roosevelt Davis
Hurley McNair
... Eric just mentioned a mystery candidate

All of these should be viewed closely.
Maybe we elected 5 players worse than them, do we punish players because of our mistakes?

We don't have many 1950s electees, did we miss the boat on Marvin Williams and or Don Newcombe? We are likely overpopulated with 1920s/1930s candidates, did we err in enshrining cool papa Bell, Willie Foster, and others?

https://homemlb.wordpress.com/2019/10/18/election-wrap-up-negro-leagues-players-we-didnt-elect/
   245. Jaack Posted: November 22, 2019 at 10:58 PM (#5903362)
I don't think we really are lacking in electing Negro League players from the main era of the Negro leagues. If anything, we may have over inducted NgL players from the 20s and 30s, but we probably over elected that era in general. As is, Willard Brown looks like a mistake, Cool Papa Bell doesn't look great either, but no one else stands out as a mistake. At the same time, now that we got Dick Redding in, there's no clear choice missing. Anyone from this era will be simultaneously borderline and relatively uncertain. Ben Taylor, who still looks the best to me of the main era NgL players we haven't elected, but at his best he's Rafael Palmeiro with more glove. But he might just be a less compelling John Olerud.

I'd love to know more about really early black stars like Frank Grant, but that data will likely never exist and may have never existed in the first place.

Players affected by segregation in the 50s are the most interesting to me. The three with the most compelling cases are Don Newcombe, Marv Williams, and Luke Easter. I may vote for Newcombe this year - his major league record is strong and can be easily extrapolated over his missing war years and perhaps a year missed due to integration. I don't think he's a slam dunk necessarily, but at worst, he's not far off from the borderline.

Williams is probably someone I need to look into more. I kind of wrote him off, but he does fill a lot of the gaps in the HoM's NgL representation - second baseman, late era.

Easter... I don't think he's a HoMer. Tough to evaluate, and I don't think it will add up. But it might. There is a lot of uncertainy with him, but his high end possiblity is pretty high.
   246. Jaack Posted: November 23, 2019 at 10:16 AM (#5903392)
I wanted to get some constitutional clarification regarding play outside US/Canada.

The wording of the constitution seems to require a player to play in a US league at some point, whether it's MLB, one of the negros leagues, minor leagues, etc. Carlos Moran never played in US ball to my knowledge, but it seems the interpretation of the rule has been to consider North American baseball, which allows for the Caribbean stars who pre-date integration to be considered, even if they never actually played in the US.

On the other hand, Japan only stars have been excluded - for good reason as they are not considered by Cooperstown, so to maintain some amount of equivalency in size, we'd have to create a separate Japanese wing or something.

But to what degree are we allowed to consider Japanese play?
Can I give a slight boost to Willie Davis to help round out his career?
Can I credit Ichiro for his first few years in Japan?
Hypothetically, if a big Japanese star got a cup of coffee in the majors, or if Masanori Murakami became a big star on his return to Japan, could I consider their case if the majority, or even the entirety of their case comes from Japanese ball?

My ground rule has been that I can consider Japanese ball as long as they built up some sort of case in the US. So I can give a minor bump to Davis, I can consider Ichiro's Japanese play, but if say Sadahru Oh played 60 games at the end of his career in the US, I couldn't consider him.

Is that an accurate interpretation?
   247. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 23, 2019 at 12:34 PM (#5903423)
I’ve attempted in the past to quantify the question of HOM representation by chronology. I don’t remember what thread it’s in now. The gist is that we are way over in the 19th Century, over or way over in the Ruth/pre-war era, under in the deadball era, after the war, and in the Marvin Miller-Donald Fehr era. I BELIEVE I included the Negro Leagues, but I can’t recall for sure. Generally, IIRC, I framed it that we are probably best off zeroing in on the most recently retired candidates rather than continuing to recycling the same old names.
   248. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 24, 2019 at 04:01 PM (#5903578)
Found the summary of my look at era balance. Look at post 160 here

http://www.baseballthinkfactory.org/hall_of_merit/discussion/2017_hall_of_merit_ballot_discussion/P100
   249. Bleed the Freak Posted: November 24, 2019 at 08:18 PM (#5903612)
Some great legwork by Matthew Cornwell (Bothrops Atrox) over at Baseball-Fever that I recommend others check out:
https://www.baseball-fever.com/forum/general-baseball/history-of-the-game/3554719-updated-parc-d-and-methodology

Highest ratings of eligible candidates/top backlog guys, excludes pure negro leaguers:

Jim McCormick - 139 * - 19th century pitchers are to be taken with a grain of salt
Tommy Bond - 122 *
Kenny Lofton - 121
Derek Jeter - 118
Charlie Buffinton - 118 *
Tony Mullane - 117 *
Andruw Jones - 115
Luis Tiant - 114
Buddy Bell - 110
Thurman Munson - 110
Wally Schang - 110
Todd Helton - 109
Willie Davis - 109
Vic Willis - 107
John Olerud - 105
Joe Tinker - 105
Jim Sundberg - 105
Urban Shocker - 103
Bobby Bonds - 103
Lance Berkman - 101
Eddie Cicotte - 100
Sal Bando - 100
Jose Cruz Sr. - 99
Harry Hooper - 98
Bobby Abreu - 97
Kevin Appier - 97
Johan Santana - 96
George Uhle - 94
Sammy Sosa - 90
Jeff Kent - 89
Jason Giambi - 88
   250. rwargo Posted: November 25, 2019 at 12:55 PM (#5903739)
Jaack(246) I think your interpretation is correct. Also, I think Carlos Moran did play in the US, the Cuban Stars played as a road team throughout the aughts and teens, and Moran was on some of those teams.
   251. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 26, 2019 at 09:02 PM (#5904132)
OK, I've updated the information about chronological representation that I mentioned a few posts ago.

How I do this is to determine the number of team-seasons in each year. There are 30 teams in MLB currently, so that's 30 team-seasons. Then I allot "slots" to every season from 1871 onward based on the number of team-seasons divided by all team-seasons in history. Next, for every player in the HOM, I determine what percentage of his career career G or IP occur in each season of his career, such that each season is worth a fractional amount. For every season in history from 1871 onward, I add the fractional seasons for every player active that year. Then, because from about 1992 onward not everyone has gotten a hearing due to eligibility requirements or active status, I debit the seasonal total of fractional careers for players not yet enshrined, not yet eligible, or still active using the same fractional amounts. For the active players, I first make a back of the envelope estimate of their total career G or IP. With all that hoohah out of the way, here's the trends as I see them.
   SPAN      +/-     %
-----------------------
1871–1875  - 0.8   85%
1876–1881  + 1.2  126% 
1882–1884  - 0.5   90%
1885–1900  + 7.3  132%
1901–1908  + 0.4  103%
1909–1922  - 1.6   93%
1923–1942  +10.2  125%
1943–1945  - 2.1   63%
1946–1956  + 3.7  120%
1957–1968  - 0.4  100%
1969–1990  - 8.0   86%
1991–1998  - 1.7   92%
1999–2008  - 2.4   87%
2009–2013  - 3.9   30% 


As I noted previously, we might as well stay out of the 19th Century. From 1885 to 1900 we've been gluttonous with easily the highest overage by percentage. We should also stay out of the prewar era. As you can see there are basically two extended periods we ought to be futzing over, by my reckoning: The deadball era could use one or two more (Harry Hooper? Wally Schang? Tommy Leach?). Then evermore after 1968 were scuffling. We're especially short in the 1969 to 1990 era. Among current candidates that suggests that we might want to turn our attention toward:
Todd Helton
Kenny Lofton
Andruw Jones
Jeff Kent
Johan Santana
Wally Schang
Sammy Sosa
Lance Berkman
Derek Jeter
Thurman Munson
Buddy Bell

Luis Tiant wouldn't kill us, but there's reason to believe others might be more interesting chronologically speaking. I don't support Ben Taylor, and I've done the MLEs on him. (More on those closer to the election.)

I'm sure that someone will want to remind me that being fair to all eras is not the same as a quota system. I'm well aware of that. But being fair to all eras also may mean that we've been too fair to some eras and should consider being a little more fair to those that can be objectively shown to be short a guy or eight.
   252. Rob_Wood Posted: November 27, 2019 at 01:37 AM (#5904156)
Thank you for doing that work. A couple of comments:

1. One of the features of perpetual eligibility is that players from long ago had (have) more chance to be elected. The long-ago eras' borderline players are more apt to be elected as they got (get) more opportunities to take advantage of weak first-year classes. The more recent borderline players have (will have) similar opportunities going forward.

2. Using team-seasons as a metric may be over-valuing modern post-expansion eras. Generally speaking I am in favor of such an approach (and I think it is baked into how many we elect each year). However, an argument is often heard that the best players are the best players. Adding X more from the bottom of the pyramid should not mean that players who were "below borderline HOF'ers" should now be elected purely because the number of players in the major leagues has increased.
   253. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 27, 2019 at 08:14 AM (#5904164)
Rob (#252),

I concur with point one all the way. I’m not with you on point two (though I think you may be merely characterizing a position rather than asserting it). That second point could be re-summarized as “the number of great players is not related to the number of players in the league.” I don’t know that I can clearly falsify that statement outright, but there’s a couple lines of argument that seem pretty persuasive to me against it.

A) The common, perhaps, universal, understanding among the electorate and those who study the game and/or any major team sport is that performance of an individual should be compared against his or her league’s performance (or whatever the equivalent of league is in a given sport). Another way to say this is that we cannot directly compare two players of different times without first comparing each to their respective leagues. This immediately situates the question within the bounds of the number of players in the league. Though this is not definitively by itself a point against your second point.

B) i think that if we were talking about THE best player in the league at any given time your second point would be abundantly true. If the HOM was the Hall of Only Players Who Were Absolutely the Best in Their Time then the number of players in the league would not matter. Axiomatically such a Hall would essentially be electing one player per league every five or ten years, and we’d have a Hall of about twenty or thirty guys. However, once we swap in the idea of merit, we have introduced a qualifying benchmark that is less specific and less exclusionary. Merit is a nebulous idea, and it describes a minimum qualification rather than a required maximum. Given that we know that baseball has improved its quality of play over time, there’s no intellectually sound way we can implement merit as being something that just pops up at random over time. Without any further definitions, we MIGHT be able to argue for greater representation for leagues more chronologically near to our own time, but we would be on shaky ground arguing for the opposite or for lots of randomness.

C) Our constitution stipulates we attempt to be fair to all eras, which negates any attempt to justify more or fewer candidates based on the quality of play in a league. The idea of chronological parity (though not absolute chronological parity) in combination with a minimum level of qualification basically requires us to see players in relation to their peers and to see the number of electees as predicated on some common denominator among leagues. The size of the league is probably the least biased and simplest common denominator.

The question is whether one prefers to use the number of actual players in the league, the number of roster slots in the league, or the number of teams in the league. The first two have issues that introduce biases in one direction or another. That’s why team-seasons makes sense to me, but that’s just my opinion.
   254. DL from MN Posted: November 27, 2019 at 08:33 AM (#5904166)
How do the Negro Leagues count into team-seasons? Are you only counting MLB teams? I feel like we have counted the Negro Leagues from 1920 onward as a de-facto expansion.
   255. DL from MN Posted: November 27, 2019 at 08:39 AM (#5904167)
current candidates that suggests that we might want to turn our attention toward


Also Tommy John, Bert Campaneris, Roy Oswalt, Brian Giles, Kevin Appier
   256. Carl Goetz Posted: November 27, 2019 at 09:24 AM (#5904175)
"The deadball era could use one or two more (Harry Hooper? Wally Schang? Tommy Leach?)."
I would agree with most of Dr. C's post. And since I'm also most likely president of the Wally Schang fan club, I'm all in there. I'm also a solid in on Leach. He's over 60 WAR 30 WAA and 15 WAG by my adjustments which is a solid mid-to-back end Hall of Meriter to my mind. Hooper's probably just on the out side for me, but I wouldn't be upset by his induction.
   257. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 27, 2019 at 03:22 PM (#5904236)
"Also Tommy John, Bert Campaneris, Roy Oswalt, Brian Giles, Kevin Appier"

I was primarily looking at the top of the backlog. Of these fellows I would only support Kevin Appier. I also would support the unmentioned Chuck Finley.

Re: Harry Hooper
Carl, there's good reason to believe that Hooper's arm/running could push him higher than you'd figure. On the other hand, I shouldn't have mentioned him. We have plenty of RFs. Leach and the Schanger are much more apt fits for the HOM.

Re: Negro Leaguers
So here's what I did with the Negro Leaguers.
A) For each Negro League* find the number of teams and the number of games started in the league. If a team played in more than one league, I counted it as a team in each league. For example, it a team played in the CUB and in the EAS, I counted it as two teams, not one. Summer leagues are combined with the Winter league that immediate follows them, so 1922 would be combined with 1922-1923 winter ball. Let's take a simple example. In 1939, the NAL and NNL fielded a total of 14 teams. Those teams have 379 games started in the NLDB (yeah, I know, there's a missing start there).
*I only counted official league games (summer or winter) as well as documented independent team play. For those who know the NLDB well, this means I included IND, EAS, WES, SOU, NOR, NNL, NAL, ANL, EWL, NAC, INT, CUB, GP and excluded World Series, league playoffs, All-Star games, vs. minors, vs. majors, vs. Cuba games. I also did not include one-off All-Star teams like the 1937 Santo Domingo All-Stars. Nor did I include Mexican League seasons because the players in Mexico would have been playing in the US leagues had they not defected, so there's no real loss of information there.

B) Because the Negro Leagues didn't play a full-length schedule as we understand it today, and to avoid distorting the results when a team or league but a handful of games, I didn't count them as having complete team-seasons. Instead, I approximated the number of team-seasons for each Negro Leagues season by dividing the number of documented games into the number of team-seasons in all of MLB history (excluding the FL and the UA) through (election year - six years) and then multiplying that by the number of Negro Leagues teams documented in that year. In our example, the 379 documented 1939 Negro Leagues games are divided into the 2744 teams-seasons and multiplied by 14, which yields 1.94 team-seasons. The big leagues had 16 team seasons that year with about 2464 games for reference. When you do this for every Negro Leagues season currently in the NLDB, you get about 135 team-seasons.

C) Then I added the result of B into the already known number of team-seasons for MLB in a given season. For example, in 1939, we now have 17.94 team seasons.

D) Finally, I divvy up the HOM slots the usual way I mentioned, just including the Negro Leagues team-seasons in the mix.

I wouldn't say it's a perfect approach, so I'm very much open to suggestions for improvement. Just remember that in most cases (outside the 1920s) at a seasonal level we are dealing with 200-400 TOTAL documented games, or about two or three MLB teams' worth of games. I'm very wary of overdoing it over small samples.
   258. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 27, 2019 at 04:39 PM (#5904255)
[I'm going to crosspost this to Ben Taylor's thread.]

Even though I said I was going to wait until the 1926 NNL data comes out, I think in the case of Ben Taylor, that new data won't change anything about him. So I thought this would be a nice lazy afternoon to look at Taylor's MLE. Here is my latest on him:

BEN TAYLOR: 1B
Year Age  Lg  Pos  G  PA    Bat  Bsr DP Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA Rep RAR  WAR  WAR162
=================================================================================
1909  20  NL  1B             
1910  21  NL  1B   65  270    4   0   0   2   -2    4   0.4   8  12  1.4  1.4
1911  22  NL  1B  140  590    0   0   0   4   -4  - 1  -0.1  18  18  1.9  2.0
1912  23  NL  1B  139  590    8   0   0   4   -4    8   0.8  18  26  2.7  2.8
1913  24  NL  1B  140  580   17   0   0   4   -4   16   1.8  18  34  3.8  4.0
1914  25  NL  1B  146  600   25   0   0   4   -4   25   2.8  19  43  5.1  5.3
1915  26  NL  1B  149  610   27   0   0   4   -4   27   3.2  19  46  5.5  5.8
1916  27  NL  1B  147  600   16   0   0   4   -4   16   1.9  19  34  4.3  4.6
1917  28  NL  1B  147  600    7   0   0   4   -5    6   0.7  19  25  3.1  3.2
1918  29  NL  1B  119  490    6   0   0   3   -4    5   0.6  15  20  2.5  3.2
1919  30  NL  1B  131  540   11   0   0   4   -5   10   1.2  17  27  3.2  3.8
1920  31  NL  1B  149  630   17   0   0   4   -5   15   1.7  20  35  4.0  4.2
1921  32  NL  1B  150  640   40   0   0   4   -6   38   3.8  20  58  5.9  6.2
1922  33  NL  1B  144  620   28   0   0   4   -6   26   2.5  19  45  4.4  4.6
1923  34  NL  1B  143  620   24   0   0   4   -6   22   2.1  19  41  4.0  4.3
1924  35  NL  1B  148  630   19   0   0   4   -6   17   1.7  20  36  3.8  4.0
1925  36  NL  1B  123  530  - 8   0   0   3   -5  -10  -0.9  17   7  0.7  0.7
1926  37  NL  1B   99  420    9   0   0   3   -4    7   0.8  13  21  2.1  2.2
1927  38  NL  1B   94  400   11   0   0   3   -4    9   1.0  12  22  2.3  2.4
1928  39  NL  1B   46  200  - 1   0   0   1   -2  - 1  -0.1   6   5  0.5  0.5
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 2419 10160 261  -6   0  67  -84  238  25.9 317 554 61.2 65.3


Now, here's the background to know. For 1909, we have just 1 PA of information about Taylor, so unless more is uncovered, there's not really enough to speculate there. Playing time for his age-21 season, 1910, is based on the playing time of long-career first basemen whose rookie years occurred at or near age 21. I left off his age 40 season because he was worth about -2 batting runs, and I figured it unlikely that in the age of Gehrig, Terry, Foxx, and friends that he would find playing time as a below-average hitting 1B.

Taylor was a very fine fielding first baseman. Among all 1Bs from 1893 through 1942, 67 Rfield would have placed fourth behind Fred Tenney, Wally Pipp, and Billy Terry. On the other hand, I'm not sure whether I'd bank on the accuracy of defensive value at first base.

His bat, while good, is not great for a first baseman. It's about the same career total as Jim Bottomley (258) or Dolph Camilli (258) but in roughly another 2,000 and 4,000 PA respectively. It trials George Sisler by 13 runs despite Sisler's almost 2,000 fewer plate appearances. For cross-era comparison, Taylor's batting looks very much like Tony Perez's. Perez accumulated 267 Rbat in about 700 more PA. Perez is not a great comp for Taylor, however, because he was a worse baserunner by about 10 runs and we have DP data for Perez that adds up to -30 runs. Also, Perez was about 55 runs worse on defense.

Taylor is most similar to Eddie Murray, I guess, and Murray is the last guy in the door for me, well him or Big Mac. It's a little hard to say, but their respective careers are both of the long and lowish trajectory.

      PA   Bat Bsr Fld  WAA   WAR
EM  12817  392  -9  61  27.4  68.7
BT  10160  261  -6  67  27.6  65.3 


Taylor has about 35 WAR7, which would also give him a very Beckleyesque appearance. Beckley, who is below my in/out line, is at 34/68 for me (162 notation), Murray at (39/67).

So here's what I see here:
A) Taylor looks like a lot like Murray who is at the very bottom of 1B (for me). And a lot like Beckley who is the very definition of a borderliner, and for many of us below the line.
B) We have plenty of 1Bs
C) There's already a superior 1B on the ballot: Helton who ranks out a lot better for me than Taylor does: about the same career WAR and a lot more peak value.
D) Fielding value, especially at first base, has enough uncertainty around it that it's not a great basis for pushing a player over the hump if he'd be at the very bottom of the HOM at his position.
E) Expanding on point D, Taylor's fielding value is based on 739 games, or about 5 MLB season's worth of data. That's not nothing, in fact, it's a lot more than many of our Negro Leaguers might have. But it's about 75 fewer of games than Dick Allen played at first, about 250 fewer than Harmon Killebrew played there, about 200 fewer than Pete Rose, and about 100 fewer than Willie Stargell. None of those guys are known primarily as 1Bs.
F) There are other candidates at more needy positions in the deadball era who would be as good or slightly better selections at those positions: Wally Schang (better selection, respectively, at catcher), Tommy Leach (about as good a selection at CF/3B).
G) There are other candidates at less needy positions in the deadball era who would be as good or slightly better selections at those positions: Harry Hooper, Bobby Veach, plus, for DRA fans, Joe Tinker and Art Fletcher.
H) There are other candidates at more needy positions from other needy eras who would be as good or better selections at their positions: Lofton, A Jones, Santana, B Bell, Munson.

At least that's my take on it. You should, of course, examine the MLE and draw your own conclusions!
   259. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 28, 2019 at 12:42 PM (#5904361)
I'm going to roll out a few more Negro Leaguers whose cases are unlikely to be affected at all by the 1926 NNL or 1932 data rollouts coming up. I'm selecting those who have received a vote in any of the last five elections as well as some that we haven't considered previously at much length. Let's start with Ray Dandridge.

RAY DANDRIDGE: 3B
Year Age  Lg  Pos  G  PA    Bat  Bsr DP Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA Rep RAR  WAR  WAR162
=================================================================================
1934  20  NL  3B   35  150    0   0   0   1   1     2   0.2   5   7  0.7  0.7
1935  21  NL  3B   82  350    2   0   0   2   1     6   0.6  11  17  1.7  1.8
1936  22  NL  3B   92  400    1   0   0   3   2     6   0.6  12  18  1.8  1.9
1937  23  NL  3B  141  600    7   1   0   4   2    13   1.4  19  32  3.4  3.5
1938  24  NL  3B  142  610   15   1   0   4   2    22   2.3  19  41  4.3  4.5
1939  25  NL  3B  140  600   10   1   0   4   1    16   1.7  19  35  3.7  3.8
1940  26  NL  3B  133  570    9   1   0   4   1    15   1.6  18  33  3.5  3.7
1941  27  NL  3B  152  650   11   1   0   4   1    17   1.8  20  37  4.0  4.2
1942  28  NL  3B  144  610  - 5   1   0   4   0     0   0.0  19  19  2.2  2.3
1943  29  NL  3B  150  640   24   1   0   4   0    29   3.3  20  49  5.6  5.9
1944  30  NL  3B  138  590   16   1   0   4   0    20   2.2  18  38  4.2  4.4
1945  31  NL  3B  137  590   10   1   0   4   0    14   1.5  18  33  3.4  3.6
1946  32  NL  3B  146  620   23   1   0   4   0    27   3.1  19  47  5.3  5.6
1947  33  NL  3B  135  580    4   1   0   4   0     9   0.9  18  27  2.8  2.9
1948  34  NL  3B  131  560   22   1   0   4   0    26   2.7  17  44  4.6  4.9
1949  35  NL  3B   98  420    4   0   0   3   0     7   0.7  13  20  2.1  2.2
1950  36  NL  3B  105  450    1   0   0   3   0     4   0.4  14  18  1.8  1.9
1951  37  NL  3B  110  470  - 4   0   0   3   0   - 1  -0.1  15  14  1.5  1.6
1952  38  NL  3B  109  460  - 7   0   0   3   0   - 3  -0.4  14  11  1.2  1.3
1953  39  NL  3B   63  270  - 8   0   0   2   0   - 6  -0.6   8   2  0.2  0.3
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 2383 10190 135  10   0  67  11   223  23.8 318 541 58.1 61.2


As you can see, Dandridge isn't a bad hitter at all, but he's a somewhat limited by his lack of walks and power. What's most surprising about him? His fielding: It's only very good, not fabulous. Much of Dandridge's reputation lay in his outstanding glove. To get to these 67 fielding runs, we have a combination of 159 fielding games in the Negro Leagues and three seasons of minor league play (1949-1951). Check out my blog for an explanation at greater length regarding how I used the minor league fielding numbers. In a nutshell, his Negro Leagues fielding comes up as about 2.5 Rfield per 154 games, which is good but not hosannahs. In the minors his numbers as a late-thirties infielder are quite good, more like 4 Rfield and change per 154 games. Obviously, he was a good fielder for a long time, but I haven't yet come across any evidence of his being an outstandingly good fielder.

When you tally it up, he comes to 33.4 WAR7/61.2 career adjusted to 162. In my own reckoning, he's not very similar to anyone. I think that's because the MLE tends to flatten peaks. The closest my own numbers come is probably Ron Cey: 38/54. From a raw BBREF WAR perspective, and now in terms of career WAA and WAR, Darrell Evans (no 1981 adjustment, no DRA) is at 24.3/58.8 v. Dandridge's 25.1/61.2 per 158. But with those adjustments I have Evans at 40 WAR7/69 career against Dandy's 33.4/61.2. (Sorry to flip back and forth between WAR7/career and WAA/WAR.) We might also think of him as Larry Gardner with a longer career.

So here's my bullet points on Dandridge. This is, of course, just my opinion based on my worldview of the HOM and my reckoning of every available player:
1) The fielding we do have, about 620 games, says he's not a world-class fielder.
2) That's problematic for him because we do have about 6300 PA of offensive data that says he's merely a good hitter.
3) If my reckoning is correct, we are well above and no worse than a little above the number of guys we need from the prewar period.
4) There are, in my opinion, at least four superior or equivalent 3Bs to him still on the board: Bell, Leach, Bando, and Cey.
5) Taylor would be a better selection than Dandridge overall...and as you'll see above, I don't support Taylor at this time.

[Cross-posting to the Dandridge thread.]
   260. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:10 PM (#5904467)
Next up in our Negro Leagues candidates review, Bus Clarkson.

BUS CLARKSON: SS/3B
Year Age  Lg  Pos      G   PA  Bat  Bsr  DP  Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA  Rep  RAR  WAR  WAR162
=======================================================================================
1938  23  NL  SS     114  490    5   0    0    0    7   12   1.2   15   27   2.9   3.0
1939  24  NL  SS     129  550    9   0    0    0    8   16   1.7   17   33   3.5   3.7
1940  25  NL  SS     128  550   17   0    0    0    8   25   2.6   17   42   4.4   4.6
1941  26  NL  SS     122  520   10   0    0    0    7   17   1.8   16   33   3.6   3.8
1942  27  NL  SS     134  570   11   0    0    0    8   19   2.1   18   36   4.2   4.4
1943  28  WW2                      
1944  29  WW2                      
1945  30  WW2                      
1946  31  NL  SS/3B  134  570   22   0    0    0    4   26   2.9   18   44   5.0   5.3
1947  32  NL  SS/3B  135  580   15   0    0    0    4   19   2.0   18   37   3.9   4.1
1948  33  NL  SS/3B  127  540   14   0    0    0    4   18   1.8   17   34   3.6   3.8
1949  34  NL  SS/3B  126  540   15   0    0    0    4   18   1.8   17   35   3.6   3.8
1950  35  NL  SS/3B  133  570   16   0    0    0    4   19   1.9   18   37   3.7   3.9
1951  36  NL  SS/3B  100  430    9   0    0    0    3   12   1.2   13   25   2.6   2.8
1952  37  NL  SS/3B   97  410   17   0    0    0    3   19   2.1   13   32   3.5   3.7
1953  38  NL  3B      99  420   22   0    0    0    0   22   2.1   13   35   3.4   3.6
1954  39  NL  3B      84  360   22   0    0    0    0   22   2.2   11   33   3.4   3.6
1955  40  NL  3B      35  150    5   0    0    0    0    5   0.5    5    9   1.0   1.0
1956  41  NL  3B      24  100    3   0    0    0    0    2   0.3    3    6   0.6   0.6
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                    1721 7350  211   2   -3   -3   63  270  28.2  229  499  53.0  55.7


Depending on how on apportions war credit, Clarkson may appear to be a slightly stronger candidate than Ben Taylor. If one gave no war credit, then Clarkson would be about as good a candidate as Ray Dandridge. If one gives him merely an average player’s credit in about 130 games a year, he’d be worth 28 WAA and about 60 WAR in 162 notation. If one gives him his career average rate of play in 130 games a year for his three missing seasons, he’s worth roughly 35 WAA and 68 WAR in 162 notation. That latter figure is basically the same as Joe Cronin or Bobby Wallace’s raw BBREF, though both look better than Clarkson once you adjust for schedule. Still that’s seemingly impressive company. Here’s the but…but Clarkson may not be as good a candidate as those guys.
A) Cronin’s WAR7 is 44 and 46 in 162 notation. Wallace’s WAR7 is 42 and approximately 44 in 162 notation. That’s considerably higher than Clarkson’s 30 WAR7 in 162 notation.
B) His fielding is based on 17 games in the Negro Leagues and 474 minor league games. That’s a small sample, and it’s also skewed toward late in his career. The shortstop fielding data is in the negative, and without early-career fielding data, it’s unclear that we really know how good a fielder he is.
C) I’m pretty skeptical that the last four years of his career would be as strong as they appear, specifically around his hitting. It’s the best hitting of his career by far. These are seasons in which he played in the AA, the Texas League, and the PCL, so they should be pretty accurate, but it’s nonetheless hard to swallow that he suddenly became a significantly better hitter starting at age 37.

In addition, Clarkson played during times that we have represented effectively already. He’s primarily a shortstop, which isn’t an area of particular need. Though he would be helpful at third base. Finally, Clarkson’s lack of durability is an Achilles heel for him.

[Cross-posted to the Clarkson thread.]
   261. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:13 PM (#5904469)
This time around Luke Easter.

LUKE EASTER: 1B
Year  Age  Lg  Pos   G    PA  Bat  Bsr  DP  Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA  Rep  RAR   WAR  WAR162
=======================================================================================
1937  21   AL  1B  124   540   20    0   0   1   - 5   16   1.5   18   34   3.2   3.4
1938  22   AL  1B  123   540   20    0   0   1   - 5   16   1.4   18   34   3.1   3.3
1939  23   AL  1B  126   550   21    0   0   1   - 5   16   1.5   19   35   3.3   3.4
1940  24   AL  1B  127   550   21    0   0   1   - 5   16   1.5   19   35   3.4   3.6
1941  25   AL  1B   62   270   10    0   0   0   - 3    8   0.8    9   17   1.7   1.8
1942  26   WW2                            
1943  27   WW2                            
1944  28   WW2                            
1945  29   WW2                            
1946  30   AL  1B  127   540    6   -1   0   1   - 5    1   0.1   18   19   2.2   2.3
1947  31   AL  1B  137   580    6   -1   0   1   - 6    1   0.1   20   20   2.3   2.4
1948  32   AL  1B  138   600   27   -1   0   1   - 6   21   2.1   21   42   4.2   4.4
1949  33   AL  1B   76   330   17    0   0   0   - 3   14   1.4   11   25   2.5   2.7
1950  34   AL  1B  141   623   16   -1   0   4   - 7   13   1.3   19   32   3.1   3.3
1951  35   AL  1B  128   532   13    0   0   0   - 6    7   0.7   16   23   2.3   2.4
1952  36   AL  1B  140   600   27   -1   0   1   - 6   21   2.3   21   41   4.6   4.8
1953  37   AL  1B   68   230    7   -2  -2  -1   - 2    1   0.1    7    8   0.8   0.8
1954  38   AL  1B  101   430   13   -1   0  -1   - 4    7   0.8   15   22   2.4   2.6
1955  39   AL  1B   86   370   10   -1   0  -1   - 4    5   0.5   13   18   1.9   2.0
1956  40   AL  1B   85   370   19   -1   0  -1   - 4   14   1.4   13   26   2.7   2.8
1957  41   AL  1B   65   280   14   -1   0   0   - 3   10   1.0   10   19   2.1   2.2
1958  42   AL  1B   48   200   11    0   0   0   - 2    8   0.9    7   15   1.6   1.7
1959  43   AL  1B   24   100    2    0   0   0   - 1    0   0.0    3    3   0.4   0.4
1960  44   AL  1B   12    50    1    0   0   0   - 1    0   0.0    2    2   0.2   0.2
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  1938  8285  282   -9  -2   5   -84  194  19.3  278  471  48.0  50.5


The MLE suggests that there’s nothing to recommend him for election.
1) There’s no data on Easter prior to 1947, so we really are making much of it out of whole cloth.
2) The data after 1961 is not applicable. I don’t include it as part of the MLE.
3) During his career, he had serious injuries that ate into his playing time (car accident in 1941 and various foot and lower leg injuries later).
4) He wasn’t actually a great hitter. A good one, yes, but not a great one.
5) Even if you gave him 130 games a year at his career average rate of value, he’d be at 25 WAA and 64 WAR. That’s a lesser player than Ben Taylor and Eddie Murray and Jake Beckley. That’s easiest to see in WAR7. Easter’s at 26 WAR7 in 162 notation. Murray’s at 39, Beckley’s at 34, Taylor’s in the low-mid 30s. Now, to some degree, that’s the flattening effect of the MLE process, but there’s not enough octane in the raw numbers to result in more impressive value.
6) There’s the big question of how long the man would have stayed in the big leagues were he white. And the more you knock off his career, the less he looks like a career-oriented candidate. Everyone has to decide whether it’s legit to give him five years in his 40s.

Easter, in my opinion, is a weak candidate.

[Cross-posted to Easter thread.]
   262. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:15 PM (#5904471)
Let’s look next at Carlos Morán. We need to look at two different MLEs for this guy.

CARLOS MORÁN: 3B
Year Age  Lg  Pos   G   PA  Bat Bsr  DP  Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA  Rep  RAR  WAR  WAR162
===================================================================================
1900  22  NL  3B  115  490   20   0   0   5    3    28   2.6   15   44   4.1   4.7
1901  23  NL  3B  118  500   28   0   0   5    3    37   3.7   16   52   5.3   6.1
1902  24  NL  3B  127  530   35   0   0   6    4    44   4.9   17   61   6.8   7.9
1903  25  NL  3B  116  490   22   0   0   5    3    30   3.0   15   46   4.5   5.2
1904  26  NL  3B  109  440    9   0   0   5    3    17   2.0   14   31   3.6   3.8
1905  27  NL  3B  131  540   14   0   0   6    4    23   2.5   17   40   4.4   4.7
1906  28  NL  3B  126  510   15   0   0   5    4    24   2.9   16   40   4.9   5.2
1907  29  NL  3B  100  400   13   0   0   4    3    20   2.6   12   33   4.2   4.4
1908  30  NL  3B  124  500    7   0   0   5    4    16   2.1   16   32   4.1   4.3
1909  31  NL  3B  126  520   15   0   0   5    4    24   2.9   16   40   4.9   5.1
1910  32  NL  3B  115  480   21   0   0   5    3    29   3.2   15   44   5.0   5.2
1911  33  NL  3B  109  460    8   0   0   5    3    16   1.7   14   30   3.2   3.4
1912  34  NL  3B   94  400   12   0   0   4    3    18   1.9   12   31   3.2   3.3
1913  35  NL  3B   72  300    3   0   0   3    2     8   0.9    9   18   2.0   2.1
1914  36  NL  3B   58  240  - 3   0   0   3    2     1   0.1    7    9   1.0   1.1
1915  37  NL  3B   49  200  - 3   0   0   2    1     1   0.1    6    7   0.9   0.9
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 1689 7000  216  -1   0  73   50   338  37.0  218  556  62.0  67.4

CARLOS MORÁN: CF
Year Age  Lg  Pos   G   PA  Bat Bsr  DP  Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA  Rep  RAR   WAR  WAR162
====================================================================================
1900  22  NL  CF  108  460   20   0   0   0  - 4    16   1.5   14   30   2.8   3.3
1901  23  NL  CF  118  500   28   0   0   0  - 3    25   2.5   16   40   4.1   4.7
1902  24  NL  CF  127  530   35   0   0   0  - 3    31   3.5   17   48   5.4   6.2
1903  25  NL  CF  116  490   22   0   0   0  - 3    19   1.9   15   34   3.4   4.0
1904  26  NL  CF  109  440    9   0   0   0  - 3     7   0.8   14   21   2.4   2.5
1905  27  NL  CF  131  540   14   0   0   0  - 3    10   1.1   17   27   3.0   3.2
1906  28  NL  CF  126  510   15   0   0   0  - 3    12   1.5   16   28   3.4   3.6
1907  29  NL  CF  100  400   13   0   0   0  - 2    11   1.4   12   23   3.0   3.1
1908  30  NL  CF  124  500    7   0   0   0  - 3     4   0.5   16   20   2.6   2.7
1909  31  NL  CF  126  520   15   0   0   0  - 3    12   1.4   16   28   3.4   3.6
1910  32  NL  CF  125  520   21   0   0   0  - 3    18   2.0   16   34   3.8   4.0
1911  33  NL  CF  114  480    8   0   0   0  - 3     5   0.5   15   20   2.1   2.3
1912  34  NL  CF  111  470   12   0   0   0  - 3     9   0.9   15   23   2.4   2.5
1913  35  NL  CF  101  420    3   0   0   0  - 2     1   0.1   13   14   1.5   1.6
1914  36  NL  CF  102  420  - 3   0   0   0  - 2   - 6  -0.7   13    7   0.9   0.9
1915  37  NL  CF   78  320  - 3   0   0   0  - 2   - 5  -0.6   10    5   0.7   0.7
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 1816 7520  216  -1   0   0  -45   169  18.2  234  403  45.0  49.0


Here’s the deal with Morán. He’s lefthanded. So we have this question: Do we only care about what he actually did as Negro Leaguer, or do we believe that we need to take into account that a lefthanded third basemen is not realistic as we look at a player.

Despite the awkwardness of playing third base with the “wrong” hand, Morán was quite adept defensively at the hot corner (in 400ish documented games). What about in centerfield? We don’t have enough data there or at any outfield position to draw a firm conclusion about his fielding. So he’s been given an average glove in centerfield. Why centerfield? Because he’s probably got enough speed to play the position, and it would maximize his positional value.
• Clearly, if you believe that it’s cool to induct a lefthanded third baseman, he’s a very strong candidate. He looks, in terms of value, like Nettles, Evans, Bell, and Brooks, despite many fewer PAs.
• Clearly, if you don’t believe it’s cool to induct a lefthanded third baseman, and you go with the centerfield MLE, he’s a very weak candidate, and little explanation is required as to why.
• Clearly it’s one or the other, there’s no compromise on this question.

I fall into the camp that would say ixnay on the left handed third asemanbay. I would have a very hard time justifying voting for someone who would never have played third base in the majors while players who actually played positions normally in the Negro Leagues and major leaguers who played positions normally remain outside the gates.

[Cross posted to the Moran thread.]
   263. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:24 PM (#5904474)
Next onto Silvio García.

SILVIO GARCÍA: SS
Year Age  Lg  Pos   G    PA  Bat  Bsr  DP  Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA  Rep  RAR   WAR  WAR162
======================================================================================  
1936  22  NL   SS  138  600    3    2   0   0     8   13   1.3   19   32   3.2   3.4
1937  23  NL   SS  143  610    5    2   0   0     8   16   1.6   19   35   3.6   3.8
1938  24  NL   SS  145  620    7    2   0   0     9   18   1.9   19   37   3.9   4.1
1939  25  NL   SS  145  620    9    2   0   0     9   20   2.0   19   39   4.1   4.3
1940  26  NL   SS  145  620    7    2   0   0     9   18   1.9   19   37   3.9   4.1
1941  27  NL   SS  150  640    8    2   0   0     9   18   2.0   20   38   4.2   4.4
1942  28  NL   SS  148  630   23    2   0   0     9   34   3.8   20   53   6.1   6.4
1943  29  NL   SS  127  540    7    2   0   0     8   16   1.8   17   33   3.8   4.0
1944  30  NL   SS  150  640    9    2   0   0     9   20   2.1   20   40   4.3   4.6
1945  31  NL   SS  151  650   11    2   0   0     9   22   2.2   20   42   4.4   4.6
1946  32  NL   SS  143  610   11    2   0   0     8   22   2.4   19   41   4.6   4.9
1947  33  NL   SS  145  620    8    2   0   0     9   18   1.9   19   38   3.9   4.1
1948  34  NL   SS  136  580    1    2   0   0     8   12   1.2   18   30   3.2   3.3
1949  35  NL   3B  124  530    1    2   0   0     0    3   0.3   17   20   2.1   2.2
1950  36  NL   3B  121  520    1    2   0   0     0    3   0.3   16   20   2.0   2.1
1951  37  NL   3B  112  480    8    2   0   0     0    9   1.0   15   24   2.6   2.7
1952  38  NL   3B   36  150    2    0   0   0     0    3   0.3    5    8   0.8   0.9
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  2259 9660  122   31   1   0   111  265  28.1  301  566  60.7  63.9


Although we have more than 3,000 PA of batting data for García, we nonetheless have no data (or virtually none) for seven of his 17 seasons. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. We have some data for his time in the Canadian Provincial League and the Florida International League, but the data is incomplete and we have no complete leaguewide data to use. That affects his final four seasons. In addition, fielding data is sorely lacking. We have just 43 games worth. For that reason, we give him a perfectly average glove throughout his career.

What we do know is that he appears to be an a fairly durable shortstop with an above-average bat and above-average speed. More than that, however, we cannot say. I would describe the MLE, therefore, as provisional. It is not, in my opinion, enough to elect him with. Why not? Well, compare to Dobie Moore. We have just six seasons of data on Moore, and 2,200 plate appearances. However, Moore has some things going for him:
A) Those seasons are virtually everything in his career, so we know quite a lot about him, there’s little uncertainty, for example about his hitting.
B) His hitting is outstanding, which matches his reputation, and it’s strong enough to be electable.
C) We have 350 fielding games at this time, which are excellent as well, matching his reputation. They strongly support election.
Everything about Moore says “elect me.” With Garcia, however, the offense is about half as strong as Moore’s, the defense is unsupportable, and the lore/reputation is a combination of sketchy on details or unsupportive (the Dodgers considered him to break the color line, but one of the reasons they declined on him is that he hit everything to the opposite field, and they felt he wouldn’t be able to succeed in the big leagues as a result).

Given the provisional nature of the MLE alone, I’d say he’s not a supportable candidate. If/when additional information becomes available that bolsters his offense and defense, however, he could emerge as a reasonable yes vote.
   264. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:26 PM (#5904477)
Moving on now to Elston Howard who received a vote or two a few years back.

ELSTON HOWARD: C
Year Age  Lg  Pos  G     PA  Bat  Bsr   DP  Fld  Pos  RAA   WAA  Rep  RAR   WAR  WAR162
======================================================================================  
1953  24  AL  C   116   500  - 6  - 1  - 1    3    4  - 2  -0.2   17   15   1.6   1.7
1954  25  AL  C   117   500   13  - 1  - 1    3    4   18   1.9   17   35   3.8   4.0
1955  26  AL  LF   97   305    4    0    0    4  - 3    5   0.6    9   15   1.5   1.6
1956  27  AL  LF   98   316  -10  - 1  - 1    0  - 2  -14  -1.4   10  - 4  -0.5  -0.5
1957  28  AL  LF  110   381  -11  - 1  - 3  - 1  - 2  -17  -2.0   12  - 6  -0.8  -0.8
1958  29  AL  C   103   406   13  - 1    0    4    2   19   1.9   12   31   3.2   3.4
1959  30  AL  1B  125   475    5    0  - 1    3  - 2    6   0.5   15   21   2.0   2.1
1960  31  AL  C   107   361  -12    0  - 1    3    5  - 5  -0.6   11    7   0.6   0.6
1961  32  AL  C   129   482   32  - 2    0    3    6   40   3.8   15   55   5.3   5.3
1962  33  AL  C   136   538   10  - 1  - 3    9    7   22   2.1   17   39   3.8   3.8
1963  34  AL  C   135   531   23    1  - 2    5    7   34   3.6   16   50   5.2   5.2
1964  35  AL  C   150   607   18  - 1    1   10    8   35   3.6   19   54   5.5   5.5
1965  36  AL  C   110   418  - 8  - 1  - 2    3    5  - 2  -0.3   13   11   1.0   1.0
1966  37  AL  C   126   451  - 2  - 1  - 1    2    5    3   0.1   15   17   1.6   1.6
1967  38  AL  C   108   345  -22    0  - 2    1    5  -19  -2.5   11  - 8  -1.3  -1.3
1968  39  AL  C    71   229    0  - 1  - 1  - 6    3  - 4  -0.6    8    4   0.2   0.2
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 1838  6845   46  -10  -18   46   52  119  10.6  217  336  32.7  33.3


Howard was in Korea in 1951 and 1952, and his play before that was very limited and not well documented. I don’t see any reason to think he’s missing much war credit or pre-MLB credit. His 1953 season adds little to his case, and though his 1954 season does, it’s not enough to draw him close to the bottom end of the catchers in the HOM. Bill Freehan, our worst catcher IMO, has raw WAA/WAR totals of 21/45. Nuf sed.
   265. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:32 PM (#5904480)
Let’s talk about Don Newcombe! He’s drawing considerable interest from the electorate and with some good reason.

DON NEWCOMBE: SP
YEAR AGE  LG   G   IP    R   RA9  RAA  pWAA  pWAR    PA   Bat  bWAR    WAR
===========================================================================
1944  18  NL   5   30   13  3.99    1   0.1   0.4    10  -0.2   0.1    0.5
1945  19  NL  15  100   37  3.30   13   1.4   2.4    33  -0.8   0.2    2.6
1946  20  NL  26  160   53  2.99   17   2.0   3.6    53  -1.3   0.4    4.0
1947  21  NL  34  210   74  3.19   32   3.5   5.6    70  -1.7   0.6    6.2
1948  22  NL  33  210   57  2.44   47   5.3   7.3    70  -1.7   0.6    7.9
1949  23  NL  43  280  102  3.27   40   4.3   7.1    93  -2.2   0.8    7.9
1950  24  NL  40  267  120  4.04   10   1.0   3.6   110  -5.0   0.7    4.3
1951  25  NL  40  272  115  3.81   11   1.1   3.8   114  -7.0   0.4    4.2
1952  26  KOREAN WAR  
1953  27  KOREAN WAR
1954  28  NL  29  144   81  5.05  -10  -1.0   0.4    55  -2.0   0.5    0.9
1955  29  NL  34  234  103  3.97    6   0.6   2.9   125  11.0   2.4    5.3
1956  30  NL  38  268  101  3.39   17   1.9   4.5   128  -5.0   0.9    5.4
1957  31  NL  28  199   86  3.90   12   1.3   3.2    86  -3.3   0.5    3.7
1958  32  NL  31  168   98  5.26  -10  -0.8   0.9    73   4.0   1.3    2.2
1959  33  NL  30  222   87  3.53   24   2.7   4.8   123   3.0   1.9    6.7
1960  34  NL  36  137   76  5.01  -10  -1.4  -0.2    62  -4.0   0.2    0.0
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
20–34        442 2770 1153  3.75  182  20.5  47.4  1162 -14.8  11.2   58.6
19–34        457 2870 1190  3.73  194  21.9  49.8  1195 -15.6  11.0   61.3
18–34        462 2900 1203  3.73  195  22.0  50.2  1205 -15.9  11.5   61.7


The key to understanding Newcombe’s career requires your answering one question: At what age would he have debuted in MLB?
Don Newcombe was a good pitcher from the very first moment he took a pro mound in 1944. But the record of 18-year-olds in the majors isn’t great, and I personally don’t see it likely that he would have appeared in the majors (irrespective of team and not taking the Pete-Gray roster depredations of WW2 into account.) At nineteen, I think we get closer to the likelihood of his appearing. But at age 20, I have little doubt that he could have gotten MLB hitters out. Newcombe pitched in the New England League ate ages 20 and 21 then in the International League at age 22. At age 23, he spent the first weeks of the season in Montreal and was promoted to stay in May. His minor league record looks exactly like his big-league record. He walked more than you’d like, and he struck out many more than the average pitcher. Remember this was a low-strikeout, high-walk environment when, I have to assume, pitchers mostly attempted to avoid the longball. Newk gave up way fewer hits than innings pitched and with strong Dodger farm teams went 52–18 with at least 18 complete games and at least five shutouts (those categories and punchouts are not available for the NENL at this time).

Whether it’s a quota thing or what, the Dodgers kept Newcombe on the farm longer than Robinson and Campanella. In my opinion, needlessly long because Newcombe was great from the moment he first toed the rubber in Nashua. I remember reading that the Dodgers claimed that Newcombe needed to work on his control, but I think that’s a bit specious and a little gaslighting on their part. If Jackie had arrived in 1942 instead of 1946, Newcombe would have been in the majors at age 20, in my opinion. Accordingly, however, I don’t give him a full-time job in the big leagues at age 20, instead following the pattern established in his age 23 season of dominating for a month or so before getting the call-up to the majors.

There isn’t that much difference between the three scenarios I show in the totals rows above, but I’m only going to talk about the one I believe in the most, the 20–34 scenario. What does 21 WAA and 47 WAR compare to among pitchers in the liveball era? Here’s a few that are in the neighborhood. Remember, this is pitching BBREF WAA/WAR only, no hitting yet.
• Frank Viola: 22/47
• Bucky Walters: 20/47
• Brad Radke: 22/46
• Steve Rogers: 21/45
• Wes Ferrell: 23/49

So we have a good, not great pitcher here. A guy that could be fringy for some HOM voters but whom the HOM would accurately reject as a prime candidate. Once we add the hitting, however, he turns into a 32 WAA/59 WAR player. On BBREF, this would jump Newcombe onto the north side of the in/out line for many HOM voters. Just looking at unadjusted BBREF WAA/WAR, he’d be in the same zipcode as lower quartile HOM pitchers such as White Ford, Bret Saberhagen, Chuck Finley, Early Wynn, Sandy Koufax, Red Faber, Billy Pierce, and Dave Stieb as well as candidates that several voters like: Kevin Appier, Orel Hershiser, Roy Oswalt, Johan Santana, Tommy Bridges, Andy Pettitte, and upcoming candidate Tim Hudson and Mark Buehrle. Keeping that company is, in itself, pretty substantial evidence for his getting a strong second look from the electorate.

I certainly won’t say that he’d get my vote or not. He’s not a no-brainer at all. He’d be a bottom quartile/quintile HOMer all the way, and there are plenty of candidates still out there with more impressive candidacies. But he’s definitely getting another look from me.
   266. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:38 PM (#5904483)
Now here’s Marv Williams, the itinerant Texan.

Marvin Williams: 2B
Year Age  Lg  Pos  G    PA  Bat  Bsr  Rdp  Fld  Pos  RAA  WAA  Rep  RAR   WAR  WAR162
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++  
1943  23  NL  2B   94  400    9   0    0   - 1   4   12   1.3   12   24   2.8   2.9
1944  24  NL  2B  136  580   11   0    0   - 2   6   14   1.5   18   32   3.5   4.1
1945  25  NL  2B  127  550   22   0    0   - 2   5   25   2.6   17   43   4.4   5.1
1946  26  NL  2B  129  550   26   0    0   - 2   5   30   3.3   17   47   5.3   6.1
1947  27  NL  2B  131  560   29   0    0   - 2   5   33   3.3   17   50   5.1   5.9
1948  28  NL  2B  141  600   35   0   -1   - 2   6   38   3.9   19   57   5.9   6.2
1949  29  NL  2B  131  560   23   0   -1   - 2   5   26   2.7   17   44   4.5   4.7
1950  30  NL  2B  133  570   16   0   -1   - 2   6   19   1.9   18   37   3.7   3.9
1951  31  NL  2B  124  530   20   0   -1   - 2   5   23   2.3   17   39   4.1   4.3
1952  32  NL  2B  128  540   22   0   -1   - 2   5   25   2.7   17   42   4.5   4.8
1953  33  NL  2B  134  570   21   0   -1   - 2   5   24   2.4   18   42   4.2   4.4
1954  34  NL  2B  123  530   18   0   -1   - 2   4   20   2.0   17   36   3.7   3.9
1955  35  NL  2B  113  480   14   0   -1   - 1   4   16   1.6   15   31   3.2   3.4
1956  36  NL  2B  105  440   14   0    0   - 1   3   15   1.6   14   29   3.1   3.3
1957  37  NL  1B   72  310  - 3   0    0     0  -4  - 7  -0.8   10    2   0.3   0.3
1958  38  NL  1B  101  430    8   0    0     0  -5    2   0.3   13   16   1.7   1.8
1959  39  NL  1B   57  240    5   0    0     0  -3    2   0.2    7    9   1.0   1.1
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 1979 8440  291  -3   -6   -22  57  318  32.8  263  581  61.1  66.2


Williams’ main claim to fame was his bat. He could play a good enough second base to get his bat into the lineup at a weak-hitting position and accrue a lot of value that way. At least that’s what I’ve taken from the record. We only have about 110 fielding games for him, almost all from minor league play in his early to mid-thirties. He came out as a so-so fielder, which matches what the lore says about his glove: nothing. He’s one of those guys for whom the lack of much to say about his glove probably means it wasn’t notably good and wasn’t remarkably bad. Also, his fielding wasn’t actually seen by most Negro Leagues observers because Williams spent most of his time in Mexico or the minors. He played just parts of three years in the Negro Leagues proper. In fact, I have no idea where he was 1946–1947. He doesn’t show up in Mexico or the Negro Leagues.

But the bat is legit. We have 4,300 PAs, and other than the expected falloff late in his career, they all look good.

Williams, adjusted to 162 notation is a 34 WAA/66 WAR player. That’s similar to what BBREF has for Willie Randolph (36/66 no strike adjustment) and Robby Alomar (33/67 no strike adjustment) among second sackers. It’s better than Craig Biggio (29/66 no strike adjustment)) and Billy Herman (28/58 in 162 notation) as well as candidate Jeff Kent (27/55). So that appears to put Williams into the zone of electability. We could use more second basemen, and his era is only mildly overrepresented.

I’m not stumping for Williams. I’m not considering him a slam-dunk by any stretch. His fielding information is sparse enough that he could yet be twice as bad a defender than we have him here. I doubt he’s twice as good, though. Because Williams is a little mysterious, I would encourage our Negro Leagues experts to weigh in on him.
   267. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 29, 2019 at 03:46 PM (#5904488)
OK, that's all the guys I can do until we have the 1926 update in hand. We will hear about Andy Cooper, Hurley McNair, Roosevelt Davis, and Webster McDonald who I'm pretty sure will be directly affected by the 1926 NNL numbers. In addition, I'm holding off on Sam Bankhead, Heavy Johnson, and Hilton Smith juuuuuuust in case 1932 should come steaming in at the same time. Finally, there's the mystery candidate who is also affected by both 1926 and 1932, and who I'll introduce when we see what comes through. That update wouldn't be for a couple-three weeks at minimum, according to sources close to the investigation, so there's plenty of time for us to get really clear on the fellows that have been updated here and who cases I've presented the hiccups about.
   268. cookiedabookie Posted: November 30, 2019 at 11:43 AM (#5904540)
Took the holiday time off to look at/revise my HoM ballot. This is pretty firm, but there's still time for more tinkering/input from others. I focus on WAR, using BB-Ref, Fangraphs, and BB-Gauge, and especially on WAR per 650 PA/200 IP. I give a fairly large boost to catchers, as I think they are hurt when comparing WAR numbers to other positions.

1 Derek Jeter
2 Andruw Jones
3 Kenny Lofton
4 Andy Pettitte
5 Thurman Munson
6 Johan Santana
7 Luis Tiant
8 Bobby Bonds
9 Todd Helton
10 Sammy Sosa
11 Kevin Appier
12 Bobby Abreu
13 Chuck Finley
14 Buddy Bell
15 Bob Johnson
16 Roy Oswalt
17 John Olerud
18 Lance Berkman
19 Dwight Gooden
20 Ben Taylor
21 Urban Shocker
22 Sal Bando
23 Eddie Cicotte
24 Ernie Lombardi
25 Jeff Kent


   269. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 30, 2019 at 11:57 AM (#5904542)
Ruminating on my ballot.... I'm thinking about positions here as a player's primary position. Also, when I look at positional rankings, I judge them against a theoretical in/out line that's based on the HOM having 27% pitchers, which boils down to concentric circles of 1 player at each fielding position plus 3 pitchers. This leads to 196 hitters and 74 pitchers among 270 honorees.

CATCHERS: We need them.
Wally Schang: 112 CHEWS+, 14th at C
Thurman Munson: 106 CHEWS+, 18th at C
Both of these guys are from eras that could use a little help.

FIRST BASE: We don't need them, particularly.
Todd Helton: 117 CHEWS+, 12th at 1B
But Helton is the best available candidate.

SECOND BASE: We can use more.
Marv Williams (unranked)
Jeff Kent: 102 CHEWS+, 19th at 2B
Tony Phillips: 100 CHEWS+, 20th at 2B
Both of the latter two fellows are from eras that need help, though they are at the very bottom of the position and don't have especially great CHEWS+ scores. We're a little over in Williams' era, and while he's probably a little better candidate than Kent and Phillips, there's nothing guaranteeing that given the paucity of information we have about his fielding.

THIRD BASE: We can use more.
Buddy Bell: 113 CHEWS+, 15th at 3B
Tommy Leach: 109 CHEWS+, 18th at 3B
Bell helps an era that needs it and is one of the best candidates on the board while half of Leach's career helps our most overcooked era and the other half helps an underserved era. Leach, of course, also contributes at CF.

SHORTSTOP: Neutral in need. We could take more if we wanted to, but it's one of the fuller positions.
Art Fletcher: 113 CHEWS+, 14th at SS
Joe Tinker: 112 CHEWS+, 15th at SS
Derek Jeter: 102 CHEWS+, 20th at SS (his fielding is that bad)
Fletcher and Jeter help under-supported eras. Tinker, however, mostly helps an era that's well populated. I'm a little leery of Fletcher and Tinker due to the huge amount defense plays a role in their cases.

LEFT FIELD: One of our more populated positions, but less so that shortstop. It wouldn't kill us to add one.
Bobby Veach: 111 CHEWS+, 13th at LF
Roy Wheat: 105 CHEWS+, 18th at LF
Veach and White both represent eras that need help. Other than Helton, Veach is the highest ranking play at his position left on the board.

CENTERFIELD: Similar to LF and SS, it won't kill us to add one, though Beltran is coming soon.
Andruw Jones: 115 CHEWS+, 12th at CF
Kenny Lofton: 105 CHEWS+, 14th at CF
Both help a needy era. Jones is second best player on the board.

RIGHT FIELD: Similar to LF, SS, CF. One won't kill us, but let's not get too excited.
Sammy Sosa: 107 CHEWS+, 14th at RF
Bobby Bonds: 100 CHEWS+, 20th at RF
Harry Hooper: 97 CHEWS+, 25th at RF*
Sam Rice: 95 CHEWS+, 27th at RF*
*Does not include estimates of baserunning, outfield throwing, and GIDP avoidance.
Hooper and Bonds definitely help needy eras. Rice less so because most of his time is in the liveball-prewar-Negro Leagues era that's already over-represented IMO. Hooper's got something like an additional 60-80 runs hanging out there waiting for BBREF to update its WAR back to the Deadball era. That's probably 7-10 wins' worth of runs given the scarcity of Deadball runs. If none of those runs counted toward his peak, only toward his career, he'd jump to 105 CHEWS+. Figure about a half a win a year toward his peak7, and he's adding about 3.5 wins in his salad days, and he's jumping to around 109 CHEWS+. I would strongly prefer him to Bonds.

PITCHER: We're roughly where I think we should be at pitcher. One or two more ain't a problem. Next year Hudson and Buehrle, good candidates in their own right, come along.
Vic Willis: 116 CHEWS+, 34th at P
Luis Tiant: 106 CHEWS+, 54th at P
Johan Santana: 105 CHEWS+, 56th at P
Kevin Appier: 105 CHEWS+, 62nd at P
Urban Shocker: 105 CHEWS+, 63rd at P
Don Newcombe (not ranked, includes Minor Leagues credit)
Chuck Finley: 102 CHEWS+, 66th at P
Andy Pettitte: 102 CHEWS+, 68th at P
Nap Rucker: 102 CHEWS+, 69th at P
Orel Hershiser: 101 CHEWS+, 71st at P
Babe Adams: 100 CHEWS+, 74th at P
Although Willis is the best on the board among pitchers and looks like the second- or third-best player on the board, his era is so over-stuffed that I'm not sure I can vote for him in good faith and still be appropriately respectful of other eras such as the Deadball era (~1910-1922) or the post-expansion era (1969-present). Another way to think of this is that I can't guarantee my system is that accurate about Willis, and I've done some math that shows me that the 1890s-1900s are way overbooked. In this case, I suspect the math is more accurate than my ranking. I'd be willing to vote for Willis low on my ballot but not nearly as highly as his rankings by my system indicate. Or to put it yet another way, is it really very likely that the last guy from one twenty-year span where I consider us 130% over theoretical balance is really a better candidate than any number of players from several eras spanning 50 years that are a combined 85% away from theoretical balance?

Tiant, Santana, Appier, Finley, Pettitte, and Hershiser help out in the post-expansion era considerably. Most of Rucker's career helps the Deadballists. Babe Adams kinda splits the baby and so does Shocker. These guys are all so close together that there's little difference among them, and certainly enough that I can't exactly claim that my system can make the razor-sharp delineations necessary to spit back an absolutely perfect sense of their relative merits. Newcombe exists in an era where we're a little overblown just now.

So, putting this altogether I'm getting:

1. Todd Helton: Best player on the board.
2. Andruw Jones: Second best player on the board.
3. Buddy Bell: Best combination of position, era, and performance on the board.
4. Wally Schang: Strong combination of position and era with strong enough performance.
5. Bobby Veach: A little more wiggle room at LF than CF puts Veach over Lofton as well as stronger overall performance.
6. Kenny Lofton: Ranks 14th among CFs for me and has no hitches beyond what his performance suggests.
7. Luis Tiant: Highest ranking non-1890s/1900s pitcher on the ballot.
8. Johan Santana: Next highest ranking pitcher for me.
9. Kevin Appier: Appier is this close to Santana
10. Derek Jeter: I would have ranked him closer to fifteenth, but if I have a little bit of trepidation about the fielding of the best shortstops, I also need to exercise the same caution about the worst fielding shortstop of all time by far.
11. Art Fletcher: Like I was saying about Jeter, it's good to exercise caution about extreme fielders.
12. Harry Hooper: Missing value brings Hooper up considerably, and he helps out the Deadballers.
13. Thurman Munson: Good combo of position and era and a good performance record that's only missing, sadly, the decline phase.
14. Tommy Leach: Helpful in era and at 3B, plus a great CF to boot.
15. Sammy Sosa: Best RF on the board who doesn't have any missing value. Helps the modern eras.

Additional Negro Leaguers who have not yet been reviewed could be slotted in once we know more.

I suspect that my ballot will be out of step with a number of ballots out there that feature Captain Jeter among the first several slots, and I suspect I'll draw criticism for "strategic voting." If voting my conscience about balanced eras and positions as is implored in our constitution is problematic for anyone, I would ask them to reread my comments about Vic Willis just a couple paragraphs above: I don't believe that anyone's rankings are close to absolute truth.

REQUIRED DISCLOSURES
Ben Taylor: See my recent posts about Taylor's credentials. I don't think they are as good as Eddie Murray's, and that means he's off the end of the board at 1B for me.
Kent: He's way near the bottom at second base, and despite its need of bodies, I can't bring myself to vote for him above players with, in many cases, considerably higher rankings than his at their own positions.
Berkman: He's close! But nonetheless behind Clark and Olerud who both have the same peak and more career value than Sir Lancelot.
Abreu: Like Berkman, he's very close, but not close enough. He's Reggie Smith with less career value, and Smith is basically the bottom of RF for me.

   270. Carl Goetz Posted: December 01, 2019 at 09:23 PM (#5904736)
Ok, here's a rough first draft. I haven't gotten to a lot of updates I had hoped for this year and I know for certain I have to look more deeply at Dr. C's updated negro league MLES.
I'm using Baseball Gauge Custom WAR/WAA/WAG with BBRef Offense; 75% BBref Pitching & 25% FIP; 70% DRA/30% DRS/TZ. Score uses WAR and WAA (No negatives) for Career Value Score and WAA and WAG (Both no negatives) for Peak. I give postseason credit to Pitchers and Catchers for all who played due to wear and tear. All other players get credit if they excelled only. I give conservative WWI & WWII credit. I also give a bump for catching based on % playing time in each given year plus I adjust for Marchi pitcher handling. Ties in overall score go to the player with better peak score.

This is a list of everyone I consider a reasonable HoMer. I'll note where my personal in/out currently sits. Let me know if I forgot about somebody who needs a comment. I'd also happily comment on anyone else who isn't required if you want one on your favorite player.
1 Thurman Munson - Great postseason numbers breaks the tie with Schang.
2 Wally Schang - I rank him ahead of Santop and Bresnahan who were both his contemporaries. I also have him ahead of Joe Mauer who I consider a pretty easy selection as well.
3 Buddy Bell - I feel pretty well established as a Bell supporter. Great defense, nice bat.
4 Santana, Johan - Excellent Peak.
5 Art Fletcher - I'm pretty sold on DRA for defense. That said, I used 50% DRA (instead of my usual 70%) and still got Fletcher here.
6 Joe Tinker - As with Fletcher, I dialed back DRA and again, still here. He's my top pick among Tinker to Evers to Chance. All 3 are on this list, but Tinker is the best.
7 Bobby Veach - Another DRA darling. I know of no reason to scale back Detroit OFs from this era so he gets my standard treatment.
8 Todd Helton - Fantastic player. Solid HoMer in both peak and career scores. Its a shame the writers have no idea how to adjust for Coors.
9 Ben Taylor - Nice career score. I rate him a couple slots higher than overall score suggests because I believe his peak may be a little better than smoother MLEs would suggest.
10 Andruw Jones - Probably the best defensive CF I've seen play.
11 Tommy Leach - Great defensive CF and 3B. Can't say that about anyone else. He comes out strong in both career score and peak score.
12 Derek Jeter - With significant Postseason credit, I still have him 24th on my all-time SS list, behind Fletcher and Tinker of unelected SSs. He's a clear "in" for me, but doesn't rate that highly among HoMers.
13 Kenny Lofton - Career score of 49.3 and peak score of 49.8; perfectly balanced.
14 Gene Tenace - Great peak as well. Really only 8 seasons of solid HoM contributions, but they were a great 8 years.
15 Sammy Sosa - Top RF on my list.
16 Ned Williamson - I was an Ezra Sutton supporter way back in the day in the Williamson v Sutton debates. My current system says I was wrong and Williamson was the better player.
17 Dave Bancroft
18 Bobby Bonds - Still a solid HoMer, but I feel he has some waiting to do.
19 Andy Pettitte - There's a tight clump of pitchers coming soon. Pettitte added a lot to his case with sheer volume of postseason at around his career norm level.
20 Bus Clarkson
21 Frank Chance - Great peak
22 Bob Johnson - Gave some PCL credit at beginning of his career.
23 Chet Lemon - Fell through my cracks up until now. Decent career score and strong peak score. I'd have him in.
24 Orel Hershiser
25 Kevin Appier - Another guy I watched play and never realized how good he was.
26 Bernie Williams
27 Luis Tiant - I expected Tiant to finish higher when all was put together. I expected to put more pitchers in my top 15 because I feel we are short. The problem is the distribution of pitching is less sharp than some other positions. I end up with a lot more guys right at my borderline for pitchers. Even with a pitching shortage, I can't put a guy right at my borderline ahead of guys at other positions who are clear "ins" for me.
28 Babe Adams
29 Ray Dandridge
This is the start of my gray area. I'd have the top 31 in my personal HoM.
30 Jose Cruz Sr
31 Roy White
32 Tony Phillips
33 Jim Sundberg
34 Brian Giles
35 Harry Hooper
36 Jeff Kent - I'm probably in on Kent but he's very borderline.
37 Jorge Posada - Same as Kent, but there's 4 guys I have ahead of him at his position.
38 Tim Hudson
39 Dwight Gooden
40 Don Newcombe
41 Urban Shocker
This is the end of my gray area. I'm definitely out on the rest, but wouldn't complain if any got elected.
42 Ernie Lombardi
43 Gavvy Cravath
44 Johnny Evers
45 John Olerud
46 Lance Berkman
47&48; Ron Cey & Sal Bando - I have these 2 in a virtual dead heat with the not yet eligible David Wright and the still active Evan Longoria. Pending the rest of Longo's career, I'm currently inclined to leave all 4 out, but all are/were terrific players.
49 Cesar Cedeno
50 Sam Rice

I'm just not that in to Bobby Abreu. 57.6/28.5/14.3 WAR/WAA/WAG split for me has him around 35th on my all-time RF list. Of unelected RFs, Sosa, Bonds, Giles, Hooper (who I need to do a deeper dive on) Cravath, Rice, Tiernan, and Cuyler all rank ahead of him. I have no elected RFs below him.
I like Giambi a little better, but still like Helton, Taylor, Chance, Olerud, Berkman and Cash better. Again, no elected 1B are ahead of him on my list.
Cliff Lee falls somewhere around 85-90th on my pitchers list. Close, but I like Santana's Koufax like career better.
   271. Jaack Posted: December 02, 2019 at 12:07 AM (#5904756)
Since it's hip at the moment, here's where I am at this point.

1. Lance Berkman
Berkman is my top returning player and it isn’t particularly close. His bat was consistently excellent, and while his career was on the shorter side, he sustained a pretty lengthy prime as an elite hitter. Defensively, while he wasn’t an asset, he wasn’t a problem either, and he even held down center field for a season. Overall, his case is quite strong, and I feel confident he is the best unelected player.
2. Kenny Lofton
Lofton was an elite base runner who added value with both his bat and glove. His best offensive year was unfortunately strike shortened, which makes his peak seem lower than it may have been. Still, he remained an all-star level cetnerfielder for much of his career, and is one of the best leadoff-type hitters in history.
3. Tommy John
John has taken a bit of a hit for me this year, but he is still overqualified. While no one would call his peak performance outstanding, he did have a few years as a legitimate ace to go along with his endless career.
4. Derek Jeter
An excellent hitter for a shortstop and a terrible defender. Just how terrible is the question. If he was mediocre, but viable there for a chunk of his career, he’s at the top of my ballot. If he was as bad as some of the most extreme numbers say, he’s a borderline candidate who may not make my ballot. As is, this is about as high as I feel comfortable placing him.
5. Babe Adams
He’s comparable to contemporary Hall of Meriters Stan Coveleski and Mordecai Brown before incorporating minor league credit, which he deserves for his excellent work in what was essentially a hyper-extended rehab stint. Lengthy career with good postseason work and a solid, although disjointed peak.
6. Jeff Kent
He’s not too different from Jeter in everything except career length. The best available second baseman by a rather large margin, Kent had a big bat and the glove was adequate for a while. His slow start keeps him from being a slam dunk choice, but he’s clearly a step ahead of all other available second basemen.
7. Mickey Lolich
I am, without a doubt, Lolich’s best friend. He does relatively poorly by bbref-WAR, but I’m not a big fan of that. By other metrics he looks pretty strong – solid both from a peak and a career standpoint. I give him a good amount of postseason credit as well.
8. Bob Johnson
There may not be a more consistent slugger in baseball history than Indian Bob. I do not debit WWII seasons for philosophical reasons, so I may end up being higher on him as a result, but even with a reasonible debit for those seasons, I still think he is qualified.
9. Kiki Cuyler
I’ve made the comparison to Carlos Beltran before, and I think it’s a good one. Both had significant skills at basically every aspect of the game. Cuyler’s era and position are a bit overrepresented, but I think he fits in above some of those guys already inducted, and I’m not keen on rejecting a player because we inducted worse contemporaries.
10. Bert Campaneris
Probably the best shortstop of his era, particularly when you account for that position credit that Sal Bando snatched from him. Excellent base running and defense in an era that was tough on shortstops.
11. Roy Oswalt
Sustained a quality prime in a tough era to pitch in. Career length is rather brief, and an additional 3 WAR season would probably help his case, but as is, I think he’s the most overall impressive case for an unelected pitcher from his era.
12. Todd Helton
One of the risers onto my ballot – I feel more confident in some of the qualms I had with his candidacy. As I see it, he was a high peak first baseman, who played long enough as a quality hitter with good defense. That being said, I think his case has a high degree of volatility, particularly for his era. Coors Field and first base defense make him a little harder to feel confident in.
13. Jim Sundberg
Sundberg has been a big riser for me over the past two years. My first year as a voter, I’m not sure he would have made my top 200, but now he’s on my ballot. He’s pretty comparable to Yadier Molina – Sundberg’s bat was a bit more consistent in his prime, while Molina hit higher peaks. Most modern stats likely underrate Sundberg’s phenominal defense. An interesting comp is Ozzie Smith – their bats were pretty close, which Sundberg’s career 91 wRC+ being a dead ringer for Smith’s 90 wRC+. Both were elite defenders. Of course, Smith had quality baserunning and a lot more playing time, which is why he’s a slam dunk candidate, but the playing time gap should get made up at least a bit by Sundberg’s positional audjustment. That lands him right around the borderline for me.
14. Don Newcombe
I’ve ignored his case for too long. He has five or so elite years at the major league level. He missed two and a half seasons to Korea. When credited with just those, he’s got the makings of a solid borderline case. I’m not sure if he deserves much, if any segregation credit – its not unreasonible that he wouldn’t have made the majors until age 23 anyway, but at the same time, his immediate dominance implies he had been ready before. I’m crediting him with half a season of credit for his pre-49 career, but I also have pretty conservative estimates for his war years. Overall, it puts him around here, but there is room to rise.
15. Robin Ventura
He’s not too disimilar to a number of borderline third basemen – he is pretty similar to Buddy Bell and Sal Bando. His one advantage is being clearly the best third baseman of his era. Bell and Bando played in an era dominated by third basemen, which leads me to believe their ample positional adjustment is innaccurate. Ventura, on the other hand, was basically the only elite true third baseman of the 90s.

-----

16. Trevor Hoffman
I am certainly a reliever apoligist compared to other Hall of Merit voters. I have argued in the past that inducting relievers is the cleanest way to remain fair to modern pitchers, whose relative lack of innings hurts them in comparison to their predecessors. I also believe that most systems, particularly those featuring bbref-WAR, underrate individual relievers contributions, for a few reasons, which I will detail in a further post.
17. Dwight Gooden
FIP-WAR is interestingly down on Gooden’s ‘85 compared to just about every other metric, but it also finds that Gooden has a real prime, and wasn’t just a two season flash in the pan. With that evaluation, he’s similar to Bret Saberhagen.
18. Bobby Bonds
He’s similar to Cuyler or Lofton in being a good all around type, but his career is really quite brief for his whelming peak.
19. Joe Tinker
Ozzie Smith with a shorter career. Alternatively, Jim Sundberg at shortstop.
20. Willie Davis
I can never get a great grasp on exactly where to rank Davis – the pieces are all there, but putting them together is tough. In a nutshell, he’s Lofton with less OBP.
21. Johnny Evers
Elite defense plus solid to fantastic offense. He has some issues with in season durability and with competition at his position, but I think his case ends up right along the borderline.
22. Billy Wagner
Mostly indistiguishable from Hoffman. My system like Hoffman a smidgen better for a variety of incredibly minor reasons, but if one is over the line, the other probably should be too, because there are no unelected relievers even in their stratosphere.
23. Andy Pettitte
Has the career type of a low and slow type (Sutton, John, Kaat), although his career is shorter than theirs. He makes up for it some with his ample postseason play, but when it comes to postseason pitching, I give more credit for peak performance than consistency.
24. Hugh Duffy
That is Hugh ‘The Borderline’ Duffy to you.
25. Jim Kaat
I’ve faded somewhat on Kaat – his peak is low even compared to Sutton and John. His glove keeps him on the borderline.
26. Andruw Jones
I still don’t believe that Andruw Jones fielded circles around the other elite center fielders, I may have been regressing his defense a little much.
27. Johan Santana
FIP-WAR sees Santana as having a less impressive peak – still clearly an ace, but not exactly comparable to Sandy Koufax. My system still thinks he’s a viable candidate, but compared to someone like Oswalt, who has similar career length, but more value under other systems, ends up looking better.
28. Paul Derringer
The opposite of Santana – FIP loves Derringer, but I believe he likely had issues with hard hit balls that FIP doesn’t see. I’ve adjusted him down from the raw numbers my system spits out, and I could probably go further, but for now he fits in here.
29. Luis Tiant
Tiant is part of the glut of borderline pitchers for me, and I haven’t really been swayed to adjust him beyond that. I think he’s not quite what most other voters see of him, but I have no problem with what seems to be his imminent election.
30. Jerry Koosman
Another pitcher from the borderline glut.
31. Hack Wilson
Big time peak. If his defense was average, he’s a decent choice, but if it’s as bad as some metrics say, he really isn’t a candidate.
32. Marv Williams
I hadn’t been taking him too seriously until later, but I am more interested in the tweener Negro Leaguers who were likely harmed by war and integration.
33. Ben Taylor
The recent revisions to his MLE drop him from my ballot. Instead of ‘Eddie Murray with a glove’ he’s ‘just John Olerud.’
34. Vic Willis
He’s moved up for me over time, but its all been very incremental. He’s a quality candidate, but not really exciting either way.
35. Ron Guidry
He’s basically Dwight Gooden light.
36. Cliff Lee
I’m probably higher on Cliff Lee than most. I really don’t see much of a line between Cliff Lee and Johan Santana - Santana does more poorly in FIP, which makes up for his higher peak in other systems.
37. Dolph Camilli
I still like the impressive prime on Camilli – he was absolutely one of the best hitters in baseball for a sustained period of time – but his career is on the shorter side.
38. Thurman Munson
Generally, I’d like to see a higher peak for a guy with such a short career.
9. Steve Rogers
There’s a lot of quality pitching here, and I’ve been meaning to give him a deeper dive. This is definitely the type of career I like – a large amount of good seasons.
40. John Olerud
I like glovey first basemen, but I don’t think Olerud had quite enough bat.
41. Orel Hershiser
42. Tommy Bridges
43. Tommy Leach
44. Larry Jackson
45. George Uhle
46. Al Rosen
47. Norm Cash
48. Tony Lazzeri
49. Jason Giambi
Reminds me a bit of Dolph Camilli in that he was clearly one of the best hitters in baseball for a solid chunk of history. However, his prime is too short and his glove is too pitiful. It’s too bad he didn’t really perform in the proffesional bat phase at the end of his career – a bit of late career value may have put him into serious ballot consideration.
50. Sammy Sosa
His candidacy is entirely based on those home runs. While he was certainly valuable, its tough for me to feel strongly about a guy who only hit home runs in the most home run oriented era of all time.
70. Wally Schang
I wouldn’t hate his inclusion, but I’d prefer to induct more defensive oriented catchers, particularly one from an era where catcher defense mattered quite a bit.
77. Bobby Abreu
He doesn’t stand out from the outfield glut at all to me. About the same as Roy White, who, while having significantly fewer PAs, was a much better fielder.

Eric Chavez is technically my highest rated player who does not meet the threshold for a second look. That technically ranks him 243rd.

   272. Jaack Posted: December 02, 2019 at 12:19 AM (#5904757)
I do think we are underrating relievers. I don't want to bother with questions about them

1. bbref-WAR systematically underrates pitching in general, likely due to the defensive adjustments they make, which to me seem haphazard. I've detailed this earlier how, despite theorhetically splitting the difference between FIP and RA, bbref WAR for pitchers is regularly lower than either of Fangraph's models, despite sharing their replacement level. This is a problem for all pitchers in general.

2. WAR based on RA/ERA underrates good relievers because it does not accurately distribute credit for runs allowed in partial innings. RE24/REW is a clearly superior option, and data for it exists for all modern relievers. Since the better relievers are more likely to clean up others' messes, and less likely to leave messes themselves, they are undercredited while the starters/worse relievers they relieve are overrated.

3. While WAR does include some leverage adjustments, I would personally go further, as good relievers tend to be leveraged into more decisive games. A quality hitter plays in nearly every game, and a quality starting pitcher plays according to a schedule. An elite reliever only plays in those games that are in question, and rarely plays in games that are not in doubt.

4. The fungibility of relief pitchers give more value to relievers with lengthy careers of success. While it is possible for a team to build a relief corps from underrated relievers year-to-year, there are typically growing pains as a team tries to find it’s best possible arrangement of relievers. Having a stalwart closer eliminates some of those growing pains.

Overall, these adjustments are just enough to make Hoffman and Wagner (and Fingers I guess) borderline for me.
   273. bachslunch Posted: December 02, 2019 at 10:35 AM (#5904802)
What is likely my ballot.

Disclosures: am basing thinking on Negro Leaguers on the 2020 ballot discussion thread with a bit of Seamheads info. Otherwise, strong preference for BBRef WAR with some influence of OPS+ and ERA+ for the rest. Am valuing hitting prowess at C, SS, 2B, CF a bit extra, especially the first of these (have moved up catchers a notch). Being best available candidate at your position helps also. Still trying to sort out peak vs. longevity, but often favoring the latter. Fine with giving Negro League credit, not presently giving credit or debit for war, injury, illness, postseason play, or minor league service. Not systematically adjusting for season length, but am giving minimal non-systematic extra emphasis for pre-1961 players. Am currently treating 19th century pitchers pretty much equally as post-1900, but for now tending to discount AA, NA, and UA stats as possibly suspect. Not taken with giving relievers a lot of emphasis. Will dock 1st year candidates who bet on games, threw games, impeded players of color, were caught using PEDs post-2005 (Manny, ARod), and likely used pre-2005 if it looks like they'll get an immediate free pass by BBWAA HoF voters (IRod, Ortiz, Pettitte).

1. Derek Jeter. Excellent WAR and hit well at a premium position. Yeah, he was darned near Dick Stuart at SS and overrated by many. Still doesn't change things for me.
2. Jim McCormick. Best WAR for starters not in by a mile; even removing all his UA-earned WAR leaves him a point up on Tiant. Short career, but played in NL except for one UA season.
3. Luis Tiant. Best WAR for non-19th century starters.
4. Buddy Bell. Best WAR at 3B. Currently inclined to trust the metric for him.
5. Andruw Jones. Best CF WAR. Close between him and Bell for me.
6. Jeff Kent. Was best WAR at a middle infield position before Jeter came on the ballot and hit well, can't in good conscience rank him below Helton, Sosa, or Johnson.
7. Wally Schang. Among best C WAR, also hit well.
8. Todd Helton. Excellent WAR and the best qualified non-NGL 1B.
9. Bobby Abreu. Best WAR among available RFs, definitely better than Sosa.
10. Bob Johnson. Best WAR among available LFs.
11. Ben Taylor. Still appears to be the best NGL position player.
12. Vic Willis. Good WAR.
13. Sammy Sosa. Better WAR than I remembered. Happy to give him some benefit of the doubt given his treatment by the BBWAA.
14. Vern Stephens. I value hitting at a premium position highly, so I'm ranking him here.
15. Kenny Lofton. Not as much hitting as I'd like, but lots of WAR at a premium position.

16-40. Tommy John, Ernie Lombardi, Thurman Munson, Sal Bando, Mickey Welch, Urban Shocker, Tommy Bridges, Joe Tinker, Jim Fregosi, Bobby Bonds, Andy Pettitte, John Olerud, Luis Aparicio, Bert Campaneris, Johan Santana, Gavvy Cravath, Jorge Posada, Ron Cey, Tony Lazzeri, Jose Cruz, Jack Quinn, Harry Hooper, Brian Downing, Lance Berkman, Willie Davis.

1B. Helton, Taylor, Olerud, Perez, McGriff, Cash
2B. Kent, Lazzeri, Evers, Phillips, Myer, Pratt
SS. Jeter, Stephens, Tinker, Fregosi, Aparicio, Campaneris
3B. Bell, Bando, Cey, Ventura, Elliott, Harrah
LF. B. Johnson, J. Cruz, Downing, Berkman, J. Gonzalez, Veach
CF. A. Jones, Lofton, W. Davis, Lemon, Damon, Pinson
RF. Abreu, Sosa, Bonds, Cravath, Hooper, J. Clark
C. Schang, Lombardi, Munson, Posada, Tenace, Kendall
P. McCormick, Tiant, Willis, John, M. Welch, Shocker, Bridges, Pettitte, Santana, Quinn, Cicotte, Finley, Tanana, Powell, Hershiser.

All required disclosure players are on ballot or within top 40.
   274. cookiedabookie Posted: December 02, 2019 at 02:19 PM (#5904905)
@bachslunch - I know others have mentioned and broken down the over-representation of pre-1900, especially pre-1890, innings in the HoM. But you've stuck firm with McCormick. Just curious what your thoughts are on the concern that we're already overrepresented in that era? To me, it seems like we need to focus on pitchers from 1970-present much more than McCormick. I'd also be intersted in hearing your thoughts regarding Schang vs. Munson. I personally go with Munson, but they are pretty even through their first 5900 or so PA, then Schang added 1.7 WAR over 3 years/540 PA. I think Munson playing in an integrated league gives him an advantage, along with his postseason play. Schang is third for me, but I've been debating on whether to switch him and Lombardi, assuming Schang would move ahead of him with any sort of baserunning difference being added in.
   275. Bleed the Freak Posted: December 02, 2019 at 02:45 PM (#5904925)
15. Robin Ventura
He’s not too disimilar to a number of borderline third basemen – he is pretty similar to Buddy Bell and Sal Bando. His one advantage is being clearly the best third baseman of his era. Bell and Bando played in an era dominated by third basemen, which leads me to believe their ample positional adjustment is innaccurate. Ventura, on the other hand, was basically the only elite true third baseman of the 90s.


He's got the nod with Baseball-Reference and TZ defense, but Matt Williams and Ken Caminiti are fairly comparable with Baseball Gauge / DRA or Kiko's W-L records.
Chipper Jones was the best of the decade but didn't get going until '95/second half of the decade, Wade Boggs and Jim Thome were pretty good in the first half.

70. Wally Schang
I wouldn’t hate his inclusion, but I’d prefer to induct more defensive oriented catchers, particularly one from an era where catcher defense mattered quite a bit.


Seems like an ideal combination of offense and defense from his time era, what sources were down on him defensively?
   276. Jaack Posted: December 02, 2019 at 03:28 PM (#5904954)
He's got the nod with Baseball-Reference and TZ defense, but Matt Williams and Ken Caminiti are fairly comparable with Baseball Gauge / DRA or Kiko's W-L records.
Chipper Jones was the best of the decade but didn't get going until '95/second half of the decade, Wade Boggs and Jim Thome were pretty good in the first half.


I view Ventura's prime at 1991-1999. Boggs was definitely in decline at that point and Thome only really plays two seasons at the position. Caminiti gives up a siginificant amount with his glove, and over the course of his career, he had less batting value than Ventura. Matt Williams is the most interesting comparison. By TZ, Ventura is the better fielder by 80 points. By DRA, it's Williams by 20. By reputation, both were seen as good, but Ventura won more Gold Gloves, and typically seems to have a bit stronger of a reputation. With their bats, their peaks are similar, but Ventura's bat lasted longer.

While I may have been overly strong in calling him clearly the best third baseman of his era, I do think that the era difference is key here. We have inducted a lot of third basemen from the 70s and 80s - Brett, Schmidt, Nettles, Molitor, Rose, Evans, Boggs. Bell, Sando, Harrah, and Cey are all grouped together below that group. Compare that to the 90s, which we haven't really touched for an era - Chipper Jones's early years and some guys who weren't really 3rd basemen (Edgar and Thome). It seems to me that quality players at third base were more scarce, and thus more valuable in Ventura's era than they were in Bell's or Bando's.

Seems like an ideal combination of offense and defense from his time era, what sources were down on him defensively?

It's not that his defense was bad per se, but I don't see it as anything noteworthy - metrics are mixed, and contemporary reports are decent, but he didn't have the long term reputation that others from his era did, which leads me to believe he was seen as average.
   277. DL from MN Posted: December 02, 2019 at 03:47 PM (#5904963)
SPAN +/- %
-----------------------
1871–1875 - 0.8 85%
1876–1881 + 1.2 126%
1882–1884 - 0.5 90%
1885–1900 + 7.3 132%
1901–1908 + 0.4 103%
1909–1922 - 1.6 93%
1923–1942 +10.2 125%
1943–1945 - 2.1 63%
1946–1956 + 3.7 120%
1957–1968 - 0.4 100%
1969–1990 - 8.0 86%
1991–1998 - 1.7 92%
1999–2008 - 2.4 87%
2009–2013 - 3.9 30%


Looking especially at 1909-1922 and 1969-1990 here are my favorite candidates

Gavy Cravath - needs minor league credit but fills that gap 1909-1922 well. Wally Schang is another on my ballot. Ben Taylor is the final candidate covering that timeframe on my ballot. Tommy Leach is PHoM but pretty far off-ballot now.

Luis Tiant is getting an elect-me slot and he fills 1969-1990. Tommy John would be my next pick, then Bert Campaneris. Norm Cash is also PHoM.
   278. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 02, 2019 at 03:59 PM (#5904966)
Since this thread is heating up a bit, I thought I'd go ahead and throw in my two cents for now. My source is my own statistic, Player won-lost records, mostly using this link, which I would encourage others to also explore - you can choose your own weights to construct your own ballot based on Player won-lost records there.

There are some missing pieces from my data - all seasons pre-1919 and non-MLB, missing games prior to 1934, war credit, minor-league credit. So my tentative top-25 below isn't a strict reading of the list at the above link, but kind of based on it.

1. Jeter - my system agrees he was a historically terrible defender, but my system, in general, has less extreme fielding numbers (a theme that will repeat itself regularly in the comments here)
2. Tommy John - if you didn't know that my system loves Tommy John, then you probably haven't been paying attention to my comments and ballots over the past few years
3. Andruw Jones - perhaps a bit of a surprise given my system's general fielding numbers. My system likes his offense more than some others (my system likes home runs) and I tend to prefer peaks and primes over careers (despite Tommy John's presence at #2 - I'm actually very open-minded about HOW a player puts together a Hall-of-Fame/Merit case). Anyway, running my latest numbers with the weights I like right now, Jones ends up extremely high.
4. Jeff Kent - I like power-hitting middle infielders. My system thinks Kent's defense, while not "good" wasn't particularly "bad" either - he was just a bit below average
5. Vern Stephens - power-hitting middle infielder - check! good defense - check (the Red Sox moved Pesky to 3B for him)! his placement does depend on how much you downgrade his 1943-45 for the level of competition
6. Luis Tiant - my system kind of puts him in a clump with several other pitchers; I'm pushing him up a bit in a nod to other voters/systems
7. Wally Schang - I'm missing the first 6 years of his career and about 300 games thereafter. What I have looks good; given Jorge Posada's documented defensive deficiencies, I think Schang is the best eligible catcher not in the Hall of Merit.
8. Andy Pettitte - kind of a poor man's Tommy John
9. Sammy Sosa - I'm pushing him up a bit judgmentally; again, my system finds a few outfielders who are fairly similar in value; Sosa gets a bit of a bump here in a nod to consensus.
10. Lance Berkman - good hitter, great postseason performer; benefits from my preference for peak/prime
11. Jorge Posada - I knocked him down a few notches because I'm warming to the idea that he was a truly wretched defensive catcher in ways that are not included in my system but which are, in fact, measurable (e.g., pitch framing).
12. Urban Shocker - I'm missing some of the beginning of his career, but my system really likes what it's seen so far
13. Tommy Henrich - I'm giving him fairly generous World War II credit to get him up here - this is actually a theme for my last four ballot slots; they're all guys about whom I have more uncertainty than the guys ahead of them.
14. Johnny Evers - He pre-dates my system. But I'm fairly sure that once I have Player won-lost records back to the first decade of the 20th century, at least one of Tinker, Evers, and/or Chance are going to leap out as clear HOMers. My best guess, as of right now, is that Evers has the best case of the three.
15. Ben Taylor - I have to defer to others and my interpretation of others' comments is that he's borderline at best.

Off-ballot (for now): I'm going to clump some of these, because in some cases, there are groups of players who my system sees as extremely similar, so much so that I tend to feel like I need to either vote for all of them or none of them (within a particular clump - not literally everybody below):

16-18. Orel Hershiser, Dwight Gooden, Johan Santana - all three have peaks/primes that easily meet HOF/HOM standards; all three are a bit weak on career numbers. Santana has the best peak and the shortest career.

19-21. Toby Harrah, Bert Campaneris, Dave Concepcion - the only three shortstops of the 1970s who could hit worth a damn. All three would be in my personal Hall of Fame. I think I could make a case to order the three of them in any of the six possible ways you can order three names.

22. Jason Giambi - has the sort of peak that I like
23. Darryl Strawberry - ditto; could probably clump these two. A third guy who recently started popping up in my rankings that's similar is Jack Clark. George Foster also makes an appearance in my ballot link earlier from this same general class (peak/prime-heavy hitters)

24-25. Todd Helton, Gil Hodges - we've discussed positional averages before, and I have modified my system so you can pick your own. That said, I still like one-year positional averages when I evaluate players. Doing so, Hodges benefits from the fact that he was arguably the best first baseman of the 1950s. Helton suffers from playing in an era when there were a ton of good-hitting first basemen - McGriff, Delgado, Olerud, Palmeiro, et al. I think my system is also dinging Helton more for Coors Field than some other systems, so I've actually slid him up here (he's more like in the 50-75 range in the link above) to account for that. I don't hate him as a candidate, but I don't think he's likely to make my ballot.

Required / notable disclosures:

Bobby Abreu - I have him around #35 or so; not enough peak for my tastes
Buddy Bell - probably in my top 200; my fielding numbers are less extreme in general and, while I think he was very good, I think my evaluation of his defense is a bit less than other systems. I'm also not a huge fan of his offense - not enough power; and I think BB-Ref's positional adjustment for 3B during his career might be a little wonky.
Kenny Lofton - around #75 or so. Basically, it's the same arguments as Buddy Bell, but perhaps less extreme: his defense was good, but probably not great; offense was fine, but not what I would see as HOF/HOM-worthy; he was an elite baserunner, which is a big advantage relative to Bell
Thurman Munson - I don't know exactly how to evaluate catchers. He's around #100 on my ballot, probably, if I went that deep, but if you wanted to convince me that his defense was elite, you could probably convince me and maybe I'd even be willing to push him as high as top-30 or so. I'm inclined to NOT give "death" credit; essentially, that's just an extreme career-ending injury. If he suddenly becomes our top back-logger, I'm not going to argue AGAINST his induction and if he gets elected to the real Hall of Fame next week, I'll be happy for his family and fans. But I'm pretty sure he's not going to be making my ballot.

I think that's everybody folks might care about.
   279. DL from MN Posted: December 02, 2019 at 03:59 PM (#5904967)
On the flipside - who are the "over-inductees"? I have Lip Pike and Pete Browning as out, that helps smooth out 1876-1881 and 1885-1900. I am not a fan of Willard Brown, Edd Roush or Bill Terry. Those would shrink the ranks of 1923-1942. Ralph Kiner has too little career value for me as well.
   280. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 02, 2019 at 04:02 PM (#5904969)
Cookie, you wrote: "Schang is third for me, but I've been debating on whether to switch him and Lombardi, assuming Schang would move ahead of him with any sort of baserunning difference being added in."

I have some information that may be helpful here, and more will be on the way soon.

Lombardi's various WAR estimates are WAAAAAAY high. I've mentioned this a lot before, but it's because none of them yet (actually, Kiko might, but I haven't looked), have taken into account his actual baserunning "exploits" nor his unbelievable GIDP avoidance...unbelievable in the sense that no one could imagine how badly he does at it.

I've previously talked about this before, but since then we've gotten more Retrosheet updates, so I can share more accurate information. I estimate that Lombardi was worth at best -14 runs on the bases. BBREF has him at +5 for Rbaser, so it's a twenty-run swing. That's without any caught stealing data for the 1930s at all, so who knows if there's more negative value there. In addition, I estimate he "earned" -44 runs on GIDPs. He's the most GIDPiest player by rate in MLB history and it's not close (among those with substantial careers). So there's about 60 runs right off the top.

I'll be reporting on a few other players as well over the next couple weeks (including Schang), but since E-Lom came up, I thought I'd mention this.
   281. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 02, 2019 at 04:10 PM (#5904974)
Lombardi's various WAR estimates are WAAAAAAY high. I've mentioned this a lot before, but it's because none of them yet (actually, Kiko might, but I haven't looked), have taken into account his actual baserunning "exploits" nor his unbelievable GIDP avoidance...unbelievable in the sense that no one could imagine how badly he does at it.


My system is based on play-by-play data and incorporates this where we have it - which is for all but 18 games of Ernie Lombardi's career. Now, one caveat: as you go farther back in time, the two things that become sketchier in terms of data reliability are fielding statistics (there are games for which Retrosheet's "fielding" records play by play are just "Lombardi made a batting out; McCormick made a batting out; ...") and baserunner advancements, especially outside of stolen bases (it's pretty rare to find a fan scorecard that distinguishes whether a baserunner went 1st-to-2nd or 1st-to-3rd on his teammate's single).

But here's
   282. cookiedabookie Posted: December 02, 2019 at 04:13 PM (#5904976)
Thanks for that info, Dr. Chaleeko! That helps a lot, and probably drops Lombardi and boosts Schang for me. It looks like Schang was an above average runner from surface stats, too.
   283. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 02, 2019 at 04:27 PM (#5904979)
Lombardi's various WAR estimates are WAAAAAAY high. I've mentioned this a lot before, but it's because none of them yet (actually, Kiko might, but I haven't looked), have taken into account his actual baserunning "exploits" nor his unbelievable GIDP avoidance...unbelievable in the sense that no one could imagine how badly he does at it.


My system is based on play-by-play data and incorporates this where we have it - which is for all but 18 games of Ernie Lombardi's career. Now, one caveat: as you go farther back in time, the two things that become sketchier in terms of data reliability are fielding statistics (there are games for which Retrosheet's "fielding" records play by play are just "Lombardi made a batting out; McCormick made a batting out; ...") and baserunner advancements, especially outside of stolen bases (it's pretty rare to find a fan scorecard that distinguishes whether a baserunner went 1st-to-2nd or 1st-to-3rd on his teammate's single).

But here's Ernie Lombardi's Player won-lost records. If you click "Baserunning" in the third table there, you get taken here which breaks down Lombardi's baserunning. Lombardi was below average but surprisingly not as terrible as you might think. There are five components shown there: Component 1 is basestealing; Component 2 is advancing on wild pitches; Component 7 is breaking up double plays as a baserunner; Component 8 is baserunner outs; Component 9 is baserunner advancement. Lombardi was very bad at the last of these - he rarely went 1st-to-3rd on a single; but was actually decent on the rest, mostly, I suspect, because he very rarely tried to advance, so he kind of minimized the harm (e.g., stolen base success rates in Lombardi's time tended to be below break-even on average, so never trying to steal a base was better than stealing bases at a league-average success rate).

Where Lombardi's absymal baserunning really shows up, though, is in what I classify as his batting statistics. Components 3 and 4 are the basic pitcher-batter matchup - the ability to draw walks, hit home runs, hit line drives. Lombardi was great at all of that. Component 5 is hits on balls in play - beating out infield hits, that sort of thing. Component 6 is the ability to get extra bases on hits in play - singles v. doubles v. triples. Component 7 is the ability to avoid grounding into double plays. Ernie Lombardi was terrible at all three of these - as in, historically terrible at all three.

EDIT: Sorry about #281. I hit Send too soon and then the Edit function went wonky and wouldn't work for me. As long as I'm here, as I said, Retrosheet has play-by-play for all of Lombardi's career outside of 18 games (they got scorecards from an old Cincinnati Post writer - Tom Swope). Lombardi stole 8 bases in his career and was caught stealing 9 times - which actually isn't THAT much worse than league averages at the time (e.g., the 1938 NL had a stolen base success rate of 52.5% - which is well below break-even).
   284. Carl Goetz Posted: December 02, 2019 at 05:08 PM (#5905002)
Quick question Kiko: Does Lombardi's Baserunning eW-L Record of 7.0-7.2 imply he was an average baserunner overall?
   285. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 02, 2019 at 05:26 PM (#5905013)
Quick question Kiko: Does Lombardi's Baserunning eW-L Record of 7.0-7.2 imply he was an average baserunner overall?


I have him as 0.6 wins below average for his career (probably about 6 runs). The .500 level includes pitchers, who are below average at offense, so "positional average" excludes them (and is, thus, slightly above 0.500). That also doesn't include Lombardi's double plays as a batter - those are in his batting, and Dr. C. is right, Lombardi was basically the worst hitter in major-league history in terms of hitting into double plays.

I would say that the quirkiest aspect of my numbers for Lombardi is that I have his W-L record for basestealing at 1.0 - 0.4, which, on the surface looks really good. Basically, the guts of my calculations are win probabilities and those are calculated given league-average stolen base and caught stealing rates. But if the league as a whole is below break-even (as most leagues were for pretty much the entire 20th century, actually), then it's actually a very slightly positive event to not try to steal a base - there's a teeny, tiny cost to not stealing, but also a slightly larger (but still teeny, tiny) benefit from not having gotten caught stealing. It appears also that Lombardi rarely got thrown out trying to go, say, 1st-to-3rd on a single, or scoring from 3rd on a sac fly. I suspect because he knew his limitations and was content to play station-to-station - which has a cost, no doubt, but sometimes more aggressive baserunning produces not only more wins but more losses too.

Lombardi has a very low number of baserunning decisions for this reason. If, say, you compare him to Rick Ferrell, who had a similar length career (at the same position, around the same time period), Ferrell has about 50% more baserunning decisions, because, well, he actually tried to do things on the bases (e.g., Ferrell stole 29 bases but was caught 35 times; so, yeah, Lombardi stole 21 fewer bases, but he was caught stealing 26 fewer times, too!).
   286. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 02, 2019 at 06:16 PM (#5905032)
Kiko,

Agreed about Lom's baserunning en toto. My numbers are showing exactly the same traits in Lom's baserunning. I don't have the complete CS figures, but it's looking so far like what you've said.
   287. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 02, 2019 at 07:05 PM (#5905041)
I just ran the baserunning and DP numbers for Schang. I would consider them preliminary and wouldn't put too much stock in them. His last few seasons (age 35 onward) are retrosheeted, and he wasn't a very good baserunner. I've got him around -6 runs for those years. Maybe not surprising for an old catcher. Comping him against other catchers from age 35 onward with Rbsr within five of his total and then flipping it around to see how they did prior to age 35, I'm coming out with around -18 Rbaser. Amusingly, worse than Lombardi. However, I would caution that Schang stole a decent number of bags earlier in his career (decent for a catcher that is), and he's probably being badly underrated by this method. Again, I'd call this provisional and encourage you to wait until there's more PBP data to see whether there's anything to support this rating.

As far as GIDP is concerned, Schang is basically league-average...for now. If his Rbaser should improve with more Retroseasons in hand, that number might creep up a few runs. But for now he's about 1 run below average in DP avoidance. He lps that he switch hit.

So big picture, even if the current estimate proved true, while he'd lose a couple runs on Rbaser, he'd still retain about a +40 advantage over Lombardi thanks to the GIDP avoidance.
   288. Howie Menckel Posted: December 02, 2019 at 07:25 PM (#5905047)
the 1938 NL had a stolen base success rate of 52.5% - which is well below break-even

can I assume that botched hit-and-runs are always counted as if the runner is trying to steal a base (even though he wasn't)?
you don't see them much anymore, but....
   289. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 02, 2019 at 08:22 PM (#5905055)
Here's info on a handful of other candidates.

KiKi Cuyler was a really interesting player. His baserunning was AMAZING through age 31, then mediocre after. I'm estimating 71 Rbaser through 31 with just 5 Rbaser after. BBREF pegs him currently at +21 runs. So I'm estimating a 55 run swing there. I'm further estimating that his speed allowed him to earn about 8 runs with DP avoidance. Weirdly, he was a good thrower in RF (+19 estimated) but a below average one in CF (-2 estimated). DRA estimates him at only +8.5. So if you want to see hidden value, and depending on how you use DRA (if at all), then he can have as much as a 71 run swing thanks mostly to his legs.

I think the 1920s Pirates got as much out of their legs as imaginable, but I'm also showing Pie Traynor as an excellent baserunner. Traynor stole a rate well above his leagues and I estimate he picked up about 4.5 runs that way. He was picked off less frequently than the league to the tune of out +3 runs. He was out on base less frequently than the league, about +2 runs. He took more bases than the league on non-batted-ball plays for another 6 runs. And finally, he took the extra base more often than the league, worth +17 runs. That's 32 runs and only for the years we have the PBP for at this time. I'm estimating another 10 runs as a young player. In his final three seasons, he looks like a GIDP hog. But those are his final three years as an older player. Comps with similar Baserunning value to him are positive contributors on DP avoidance by about one run. I'd take that DP stuff with a grain of salt for now. We still don't have complete GIDP totals or DP opportunity totals for him or the league. If you want a range, I'd say anywhere between +1 to -5 on DP avoidance. So skip the DP stuff, but Traynor's 42 Baserunning Runs compare against -1 runs from BBREF, representing a 43 run swing.

The other guy this info is important for is Sam Rice. Rice appears to be a really good baserunner. I've stated before that he's the Ichiro of his time, but in terms of baserunning that may be a little overinflated based on the latest information. I'm currently estimating him at +39 for baserunning versus BBREF's +12. For GIDP, comps-based analysis suggests +24 career runs on DP avoidance. Finally, the most recent information suggests that Rice was not an elite thrower despite all the years he led or ranked highly in OF assists (which are most meaningful among RFs). Right now I'm only estimating him at +16 runs with the arm, which is merely +4 against DRA. That could certainly change because several of his best OF-throwing seasons are not yet included. Taken altogether, however, he appears to have about 51 "missing" runs from BBREF and 55 if you use DRA and knock out its useless arm values.

If there's anyone from the 1925 to WW2 era that you'd like me to update you about, please let me know, I'm happy to provide more information.
   290. Carl Goetz Posted: December 03, 2019 at 09:21 AM (#5905136)
"Basically, the guts of my calculations are win probabilities and those are calculated given league-average stolen base and caught stealing rates."
So if we looked at pWIns-Losses, if he's stealing at below break even, he would have a losing record since he's reducing his team's chances of winning?
   291. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 03, 2019 at 09:47 AM (#5905146)
So if we looked at pWIns-Losses, if he's stealing at below break even, he would have a losing record since he's reducing his team's chances of winning?


Yeah, more or less. There's also a contextual component - players (or managers) choose when to try to steal bases and the break-even point varies by situation. I presume that any system will get you to this same place - if you do linear weights for SB and CS (note: as Dr. C. alluded, CS wasn't an official stat in the NL before I think the early 1950s), anybody below break-even will lose more on their CS's than they gain on their SB's. The additional step that I do that I don't THINK is traditionally done is to give mirror-image credit for NOT trying to steal a base. Putting that in what I call Component 1 is something of an accounting gimmick - it has to go somewhere to balance everything out and that seems the most logical place.

The other thing to keep in mind about the 1930s is that not only were a lot of players really bad at stealing bases (I think Howie's right that a lot of this is botched hit-and-runs), but it was also a pretty high run-scoring environment (moreso in the AL as the decade wore on), which makes the break-even rate higher (no need to try to steal a base if the next two batters are both .320 hitters).

Finally, apropos of nothing but I found it interesting when I noticed it, there was a massive sea-change in basestealing in 2007. Before then, actual stolen base rates were almost always below break-even (e.g., here's 1938 - last table, change the date in the URL to change the year; numbers here include pickoffs and balks so the actual break-even is a smidge different than what I quoted above). But since 2007, actual SB rates have been above break even, I think every year (which means that, on average, not stealing is now a slight negative - although, again, this will be context-dependent).
   292. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 03, 2019 at 09:59 AM (#5905149)
Kiko,

Super interesting about the league stealing more effectively. A few observations about that:
Carlos Beltran had started to get noticed for his high-percentages around then
The Phillies, and Baserunning coach Dave Lopes, were getting noticed for their running
The Rays started investing in more Baserunning instruction at all levels, including MLB according to The 2% by Jonah Keri.

It was kinda in the air from a post hoc narrative perspective, so this data makes sense in that way.
   293. bachslunch Posted: December 03, 2019 at 10:55 AM (#5905178)
@274: I realize the argument on McCormick, and this is not the first time someone's disagreed with me on this. My basis is pretty hard-core BBRef WAR based, and much as I might want to hope otherwise, McCormick tops the list of available pitchers who didn't pitch primarily in the UA, AA, or PL. If I'm going to go this route and be consistent, he's the top pitcher available, full stop. He doesn't have a prayer at getting elected, and if I could vote strategically, I'd finagle a way to drop him lower -- but I'm not allowed to, so I can't.

Ive also got Schang as tops in catcher BBRef WAR, at 48.0, plus he and Munson have a nearly identical OPS+ of 117 TO 116. The differences isn't huge in WAR, but it's there:

Schang: 48.0
Lombardi: 46.8
Munson: 46.1

I've also been told I need to adjust a bit in favor of players who predate expansion because of schedule length, which further helps Schang (and Lombardi). So that's why they're ranked as such. FWIW, Lombardi and Munson are barely off my ballot and will likely be on it next year. I'm also trying to be fair to the other positions, after all.
   294. Carl Goetz Posted: December 03, 2019 at 11:16 AM (#5905186)
The problem with straight WAR for 19th Century pitchers is that the Average pitcher got a lot more WAR than now. Currently, an average SP is around 2.0 WAR. For McCormick's 10 year career, the average average is around 3.9 WAR for an SP. Just adjusting for this fact would lop 19 WAR off his total. Also his best season is in the UA which should be heavily discounted as well. You don't need to strategically vote; just adjust for the conditions under which he played.
   295. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: December 03, 2019 at 12:10 PM (#5905199)
Ready for a wacky one? Here's another who might be helped by additional PBP data: Earle Combs. No, seriously.

BBREF shows him as a -1 runner. PBP, which essentially covers his whole career, shows him as a +20 runner: 1 run better in steals, about even on pick offs, +3 on outs-on-base, +3 on non-ball-in-play bases taken, and +14 on extra bases taken on batted balls. That's a big swing, about two wins' worth.

On GIDP avoidance, I'm estimating roughly +11 based on his comps.

On outfield throwing, his DRA rating is a whopping -35, but PBP suggests a far more modest -11 runs, which is a 24 run swing.

Total it up, and for voters who currently incorporate DRA's arm value there's potential for 55 additional runs of "hidden" value for Combs. For non-DRA voters it's a still impressive 32 runs to the good.

If these estimates hold, then he goes from an obvious mistake HOFer to a guy somewhere between Dale Murphy and the in/out line, which isn't so egregious. Kiko, are seeing the same thing for his running, throwing, and GIDPing?
   296. cookiedabookie Posted: December 03, 2019 at 01:13 PM (#5905252)
Dr. Chaleeko, what about Tony Lazzeri and Tommy Leach?
   297. cookiedabookie Posted: December 03, 2019 at 01:19 PM (#5905256)
We elect 11 in the next three years, with only two obvious candidates (Jeter, A-Rod). That means it's likely nine of the top ten returning will be elected. And only two of them are pitchers, which seems too light. It looks like the HoM is overlooking too many of the 1980s/1990s pitching candidates.
   298. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 03, 2019 at 01:21 PM (#5905257)
Dr. Chaleeko, what about Tony Lazzeri and Tommy Leach?


Tommy Leach pre-dates Retrosheet's play-by-play data, which as of right now only go back to 1919 - and are missing quite a lot of data in 1919 and a fair bit of data through 1933 (Retrosheet should be doing another update in the next week or so, but that's not really going to change the answer on Leach). Lazzeri's actually in my top 60 or so (see the first link in comment #278). Combs isn't really in my consideration set. I agree w/ the numbers that Dr. C. quoted - great baserunner, probably not horrific fielder, but he was still actually a pretty bad fielder over his career and nothing overly special as a hitter.
   299. Kiko Sakata Posted: December 03, 2019 at 01:27 PM (#5905259)
To answer the question directed to me in #295 more directly, I have Combs at +2.2 baserunning wins and +0.3 batting wins for DP avoidance. The latter doesn't jump out at me as a huge number - very good, obviously, but not the anti-Lombardi or anything. On fielding, I have him at about -2.1 wins for his career - as I said, not "horrific" but still pretty bad. The link to Combs here extrapolates missing games for him for seasons where we have at least some data, which works out to 178 missing games for Combs (none in 1927 - Retrosheet has full play-by-play for the '27 Yankees).
   300. Mike Webber Posted: December 03, 2019 at 01:58 PM (#5905279)
Kiko - could you compare Rizzuto and Henrich?

Also, could you comment on Toby Harrah's fielding? As a very young person, I always had the idea that he was not a very good fielder. I think this came from early Bill James articles on Range Factor, and the fact that he was moved off SS at age 27. Guys that could really field didn't play all over the diamond back then, they locked them into a slot.
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