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Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Addie Joss

Durability aside, there weren’t too many pitchers greater than him.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2004 at 09:23 PM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 22, 2004 at 09:34 PM (#1036776)
hot topics
   2. The Honorable Ardo Posted: December 23, 2004 at 09:37 PM (#1038792)
Rube Waddell (194-134) is Addie Joss (160-97) plus 34-37, as near contemporaries in the same league. Why is Waddell 11th on the 1941 ballot, and Joss in danger of dropping out?
   3. sunnyday2 Posted: December 23, 2004 at 10:23 PM (#1038837)
This is another version of "if-then." If Rube, then Addie. If 194-134, then 160-97. The fallacy in this particular version--well, there are a bunch, including the validity of W-L as the only or key measure of value, plus offensive and defensive support, and others--but in this particular version the particular fallacy is that Rube didn't go 160-97 and then, instead of retiring, 34-37. The 34-37 is embedded in his career, inside of seasons in which he was exceptionally effective.

Let's compare W-L records, since that what Ardo is focused on, from high to low with ERA+ thrown in for fun.

Best--Waddell 27-10 (180) Joss 27-11 (137)--advantage Rube
Next--Joss 24-11 (205) Waddell 25-19 (165)--Joss
3rd--Waddell 24-7 (179) Joss 21-9 (152)--Rube
4th--Joss 20-12 (131) Waddell 21-16 (125)--too close to call without more info
5th--Waddell 19-13 (121) Joss 18-13 (130)--too close to call
6th--Waddell 19-14 (127) Joss 17-13 (124)--too close
7th--Joss 14-10 (159) Waddell 15-17 (123)--Joss
8th--Joss 14-13 (150) Waddell 14-16 (108)--Joss
9th--Waddell 11-14 (102) Joss 5-5 (114)--Rube
10th through 14th--Waddell 8-13 (153), 7-2 (125), 3-1 (70), 0-1 (133)--Rube

Throw out Rube's advantages in years 9 through 14 if you like, but then you also have to discount Joss' very minor advantages in years 7-8, and Rube had 3 of the 4 best seasons either of them ever had. Each won 20 games 4 times. Joss' ERA+ was better than 120 8 times when he went 155-92. Rube's was better than 120 (and eligible for ERA title) 8 times at 158-109.

Joss career ERA+ was 142 with no decline. Rube's was 135 in 600 more IP, and was 146 during those 8 peak years.

So Rube was more effective during his peak. Do several years at 34-37 versus Joss at 0-0 push Joss ahead? If you want to argue as much, this is the other fallacy represented here--the inference is that 34-37 (actually, outside of his 8 peak years 35-34 with an ERA+ that is still around 108) is of negative value. This is not a generally accepted interpretation, either.

The issue with Waddell is whether his ERA+ is especially misleading because of UER, though his RA+ is still pretty good. But for those who feel the UER diminish Waddell's case, fine, but it doesn't have anything to do with making a stronger candidate of Addie Joss.

For the record, both were on my ballot last time, but I have Waddell higher and I am pretty sure I always will.
   4. jimd Posted: December 24, 2004 at 12:28 AM (#1038998)
Adding to what sunnyday2 said:

When BP factors in all of Waddell's unearned runs, and factors in the fact that Joss played most of his career for contenders with good defenses, BP comes to the conclusion that they were just about equally effective, Waddell 3.63 DERA and Joss 3.65 (4.50 being average). When you consider Waddell's 600+ IP edge, Waddell comes out ahead, though neither are on my ballot.
   5. The Honorable Ardo Posted: December 24, 2004 at 05:55 AM (#1039401)
Good analysis, sunnyday. I did not mean to argue 34-37 with about a 108 ERA+ is of negative value; in fact, it is of more (positive) value than it first seemed to me. That said, Waddell's better peak seasons and IP edge place him a tier ahead of Joss.
   6. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: January 29, 2010 at 05:11 PM (#3449775)
Hey, how do you say "goodbye" in Spanish?
   7. Carl Goetz Posted: December 06, 2017 at 10:11 AM (#5587124)
Is it legitimate under the HoM rules to give credit for what someone might have done had they not died early? I give WWII (and other wars) credit to guys on the premise that they were still the same quality baseball player but didn't have the opportunity to play because of outside factors. Being injured (in season or career ending) or dead doesn't really fit that for me. Not sure if I'm for or against this, just wondering if its an option. "Dead" credit would seriously affect how I think of Addie Joss and would also somewhat add to Thurman Munson's case (especially since I'm pro-Munson without such credit).
   8. DL from MN Posted: December 06, 2017 at 10:57 AM (#5587180)
No, death has been considered a "really serious injury" that ends a player's career. It is a slippery slope where every injury or illness would have to be considered.
   9. Carl Goetz Posted: December 06, 2017 at 01:00 PM (#5587341)
That's kind of my line of thinking. I noticed Joss in the ballot thread and the voter was giving him after death credit and claiming he was better than Koufax. I disagree based on what they actually played. Koufax was the best pitcher in baseball in 1963, 1965 and 1966 and played at a similar level in his 2 injury shortened seasons in 62 and 64. I don't think Joss was ever the best pitcher in baseball. But if you're going to give Joss death credit, you also have to give Koufax career ending injury credit and Koufax was playing at a much higher level when he retired than Joss was when he died (even if you pretend 1910 didn't happen and go with his 08-09 level). Also, boosting Joss' last sick season was mentioned. My understanding was that Joss got sick around 1911 spring training and that his missed time (and presumably lower than his standard of performance) in 1910 was due to arm trouble.

I'm not trying to avoid engaging the person whose ballot this is, but I thought it more appropriate to discuss here or on the discussion thread rather than on the ballot thread.

ps look at Clayton Kershaw's career to date. I think he compares favorably to both Koufax and Joss at a similar point to where their careers ended. And technically, 2018 will be his age 30 season. Mike Trout is getting pretty darn close to electable himself.

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