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Thursday, November 04, 2010

John Olerud

We didn’t create a thread for John Olerud last year either. Sorry about that John . . .

John Olerud on

JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 04, 2010 at 03:31 PM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: November 04, 2010 at 03:48 PM (#3683773)
   2. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: November 04, 2010 at 04:32 PM (#3683816)
1.6, 1.8, 3.4, 8.2, 3.1, 1.2, 1.9, 5.2, 8.1, 5.3, 3.5, 5.3, 5.1, 2.0, 0.7, 0.4

two issues
1: he put up 3.1 WAR over 3 seasons(ages 34-36)- if he'd put up 10.0 over his age 33-37 seasons he would have cleared the HOM's magical 60.0 line

2: from 24-25 he put up 11.3, from 29-30 he put up 13.3- had he put up 12.0 over ages 26-27 (instead of 3.1) he would have sailed over the HOM's magical 60.0 line.

Clear example of someone with HOF/HOM "talent" who couldn't quite get all the pieces to add up IMHO

Pull out one of 1995 or 1996 and replace with another year like 1993 or 1998 and he's in I think... didn't happen though.
   3. rawagman Posted: November 05, 2010 at 02:49 AM (#3684293)
John Olerud comps nicely to Tony Perez. Similar profile. Olerud slightly better hitter, Perez adds value from his days at 3B, but I think Olerud was a better fielder at 1B, as far as I can tell and Perez played a little bit longer. Both well off my ballot, but in the consideration set.
   4. The District Attorney Posted: January 23, 2011 at 02:19 AM (#3734913)
Bill James, from his pay site:
In recent years it has been suggested that the Cy Young Award for Felix Hernandez or the Hall of Fame selection of Bert Blyleven show how far sabermetrics has come in winning general acceptance. Well, let me suggest that the near-unanimous rejection of John Olerud shows how far we haven’t come. If John Olerud had hit .324 in his career¹, I suggest, his value would have been considered self-evident, and people would think of him as a Hall of Famer. He would have scored about 50 less runs; he would have driven in about 70 more—which would have given him six hundred-RBI seasons, rather than three.

In my analysis, John Olerud rates as an obvious Hall of Famer.
He has Olerud's career won-lost record at 282-121.

Apparently, a big part of it is defense:
why [does] Olerud’s defense [rate] so well?

There is no easy answer; it is just that everything is positive. He committed 45 fewer errors in his career than a league-average first basemen. The third basemen and shortstops on his teams were charged with 58 fewer errors than expectation (adjusted for Olerud’s playing time.) His “arm rating”, based on an estimate of the number of plays he initiated at other bases, is very good. His teams were very good defensively, and our system assumes that if a team is good defensively, then the individuals on the team must receive credit for that. Olerud does not rate as the equal of Keith Hernandez, but he does rank as a very, very good defensive first baseman.

¹ i.e., if Olerud had had 500 fewer walks and 325 more singles in 325 more at-bats.
   5. Yardape Posted: January 23, 2011 at 02:40 AM (#3734918)
In my analysis, John Olerud rates as an obvious Hall of Famer.

I don't know about obvious, but I think he's a much stronger candidate than the consensus seems to, either in HoF or HoM voting. I've just started thinking about a ballot for next year, but at first glance I could see Olerud near the top.
   6. theorioleway Posted: October 21, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4278066)
So I was looking at my spreadsheet for this project, and I happened to sort/view differently than normal, and I had an epiphany that I was definitely undervaluing Olerud. Now I still need to go into more detail and look more at other players, but it wouldn't shock me if Olerud ends up on my ballot and if I think he is a deserving HOMer. The Keith Hernandez comp is pretty valid: both had a career 130 wRC+, were excellent defensively, and had a prime season interrupted by labor problems. Now, Hernandez was better defensively and as a baserunner and in a tougher era to dominate, so Hernandez was clearly better. But Olerud doesn't have to be better than Hernandez to be considered worthy, as long as he meets the standards of the HOM, which I think an argument can be made that he did.

I'm assuming that a lot of people might be dismissing Olerud because he played in an era that had many other great 1B/bats. But I think it's interesting if you compare with the other glut 1B/bat era, the 20s and early 30s:

Gehrig : Bagwell
Foxx: Thomas
Greenberg : McGwire
Leonard : Palmeiro
Suttles : Martinez
Terry & Sisler : Clark & Olerud

I wasn't sure how to comp the last two. On the one hand Terry and Clark have almost identical wRC+s, although Clark has 1,000 more PAs. On the other hand, Terry & Olerud's fielding was much better than Sisler and Clark's. And of course it also depends on how you rank Clark vs. Olerud--I think Olerud is better, but Clark sailed in the HOM voting. Regardless, I think the above shows that Olerud fits in nicely and that the precedent is set that there aren't too many 1B from his era in. Now ultimately, you may think there are too many 1B in the HOM or there isn't enough space on your ballot, but for those who championed Terry, Sisler, or Clark, you should really consider Olerud.
   7. 57i66135 is a hard word for me. Posted: October 21, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4278077)
how about the idea that he should go into the hall as an innovator, due to his pioneering the usage of a fielders' helmet?
   8. Voros McCracken of Pinkus Posted: October 21, 2012 at 03:26 PM (#4278102)
Olerud was one of the slowest non-Molina baserunners I've seen in the last 20 years. I'm not sure BBref captures that as much as it could or should. He's seven runs better on baserunning than Konerko in 300 or so extra PAs, but Konerko was actually better than Olerud in his career on scoring from second on singles (which is truly shameful on Olerud's part). It seems Olerud's advantage is on first to thirds, and, except for the very fast, it would seem to me that would have a lot more to do with things out of the baserunner's control than scoring from second on a signle.
   9. theorioleway Posted: October 29, 2012 at 01:39 PM (#4287423)
So I did a more in-depth look at Olerud, and I think he falls short. He doesn't take as much of an advantage as others because his 1994-1995 weren't that good (120 and 113 wRC+), so he can't add that much value. That being said, I still think he is better than Clark and (probably) Sisler, and maybe Terry.

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