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Monday, March 07, 2005

Jud Wilson

Jud Wilson

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 07, 2005 at 01:24 AM | 198 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   101. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 11, 2005 at 03:21 PM (#1193811)
I would throw Frank Baker into that group as well. It seems very strange to me that the four best 3B ever would have all played after WWII and that three of them were contemporaries on the 80's. Not that I disgaree that those four are the top four 3B ever, just that Baker, best pre-Matthews 3B in my view, should be considered with them. And I know that Joe like Ezra Sutton.
   102. karlmagnus Posted: March 11, 2005 at 04:42 PM (#1193945)
I'd say there's a big gap between 3 and 4 in that list, and I'd put Baker in there somewhere (and indeed A-Rod must qualify if he goes on playing 3B.) If Boggs is the 5th best 3B ever that puts him about #120; it has not been a very distinguished position.
   103. karlmagnus Posted: March 11, 2005 at 04:51 PM (#1193954)
I'm puzzled by the strong sabermetric regard for Boggs, actually (though I know he walked a lot.) I've been a Red Sox supporter right through Boggs' career and 10 years before that; I never thought of him as the "Mighty Casey" figure that you cheered for when at bat, and could turn the game with one heave. Yaz, Rice (before 1980 or so), yes. Vaughan in 95-96 yes. Manny and Ortiz in 2004 yes. Nomar in 99-00 yes. Boggs no.
   104. andrew siegel Posted: March 11, 2005 at 04:59 PM (#1193965)
Ok, I'll bite. I can see putting Yaz over Boggs and maybe Manny if he continues to perform at this clip and increases his durability. But Rice, Vaughan, Ortiz, or Nomar, come on.

I realize that you are not saying that those guys are better HoM candidates than Boggs, only that they were subjectively more fear-inducing offensively at their peak moments. What I fail to understand is why that should matter more than fractionally in assessing how meritorious a guy's career was (or even how meritorious he was at his peak). It sounds an awful lot like the Bizarro (No Statistics Ever Kept) Hall of Fame we were talking about a few weeks ago.
   105. DavidFoss Posted: March 11, 2005 at 05:12 PM (#1193988)
At the time (mid-late 80s), there was still a bit of awe associated with the batting title. Boggs had five batting titles in 6 years. High batting averages, too... all above .357. He was seen as a successor to Carew in that regard. The mainstream media had nothing but great things to say about him during this time.

There was that Sports Illustrated article with Boggs, Gwynn and Ted Williams about this time as well... people

Was he 'feared'? Well, not in the same way that the clean-up hitters you mentioned were feared, but I think it was genuinely agreed that he was the toughest out in the game during this time.
   106. OCF Posted: March 11, 2005 at 06:07 PM (#1194091)
On Boggs versus Wilson: I know that Boggs, for most of his long career, was a competent, maybe even pretty good, major league third baseman. I haven't seen the evidence to suggest we can think that of Wilson, If forced to rate them head-to-head, I would give the advantage to Boggs on defensive grounds.

On Boggs versus his own contemporaries: His batting record speaks for itself, loudly. But one aspect of offense not captured by OPS+ is baserunning. Boggs was a fairly poor baserunner, a fact levereged in importance by the leadoff-skills shape of his batting record and the fact that he was used as a leadoff hitter for part of his career. One fascinating comparison: Tim Raines had a considerably lower OPS+ than Boggs. However, Raines, consuming the same number of career outs, had the same number of R + RBI as Boggs. (And, yes, Raines was mostly a corner outfielder, for which the standards aren't the same as for 3B.)
   107. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: March 11, 2005 at 08:33 PM (#1194402)

Do you mean baserunning specifically related to stealing bases? Or do you mean in general? I always thought of Boggs as a baserunner who didn't cost his teams outs on the bases. I also remember hearing during his prime years that despite a lack of footspeed, he was among the fastest in the game going home-to-first in the AL. I've always suspected that was mostly because his swing was so compact and had a follow through that led him a few steps down the baseline.

Maybe it just wasn't true? He grounded into 236 DPs (61st all time, finishing in the league's top ten once and leading the league once), a rate of one every 39 at bats. That seems about average, maybe a bit better than average.

Raines GIDPed every 62 ABs.

Other contemporaries with lengthy careers: Whitaker every 60, Trammell every 56, K Hernandez every 46, Wallch every 42, Puckett every 39, Gaetti and Murphy every 38, Randolph and Chili every 37, Mattingly Gywnn, and Murray every 36 ABs, Ripken every 33. Jim "Mr. DP" Rice grounded into one every 26 at bats.
   108. jimd Posted: March 11, 2005 at 10:23 PM (#1194614)
Raines GIDPed every 62 ABs.

This should really be expressed as GIDP per GIDPop (runner on 1st, 0 or 1 out). Somehow, I think that AL leadoff hitters get many more ops than NL ones.
   109. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 11, 2005 at 10:30 PM (#1194631)
I never thought of him as the "Mighty Casey" figure that you cheered for when at bat, and could turn the game with one heave. Yaz, Rice (before 1980 or so), yes. Vaughan in 95-96 yes. Manny and Ortiz in 2004 yes. Nomar in 99-00 yes. Boggs no.

If Boggs had been given all those opportunities as the players that you mentioned had to drive in runners, you would have.
   110. karlmagnus Posted: March 11, 2005 at 11:23 PM (#1194732)
Actually Nomar's career OPS+ is 133 to Boggs' 130. If Nomar's into his decline phase already, he's no Boggs, but if he keeps up the 133 for another 5 years (and 99/00 were above 150) he's above Boggs, because he's a SS, and not a bad one at his best. Nomar in 99-00 was MUCH more exciting to watch.

To be fair, I missed '87 altogether, which was Boggs' best season. But I remember thinking in '86 that that Sox team was not that unlucky to lose to the Mets, because although they had Clemens, they had nothing like the Yaz/Lynn/Rice lineup of '75 -- which I still think was a considerably better team overall, though in saying that I may be mentally underrating Clemens.

I never thought Carew was all that great either.

I'm not saying Boggs isn't a HOMer, I'm saying he's #120 not #50. I think I stick to that view.
   111. karlmagnus Posted: March 11, 2005 at 11:24 PM (#1194736)
And if you adjust for season length, Beckley's better!
   112. Gadfly Posted: March 12, 2005 at 08:03 PM (#1195851)
(Post 80, response to my post 78)

In your post, you state that my views would carry more weight if I did not 'go to such extremes.' You then accuse me of claiming something that I unequivocally did not say: 'Jose Mendez had the career peak of Pedro Martinez.'

I will forgive you for that deliberate misstatement for the simple reason that I understand my characterization of the 5 foot 8 inches, 195 pound, Jud Wilson as 'built like a gorilla, strong as an ox' seems to have gotten under your skin.

However, although I did not state it, I would like to say that the 'built like a gorilla' and 'strong as an ox' comments are not my opinions or characterizations of Wilson. These are direct QUOTES from his Negro League teammates, who were speaking admirably about him.

Also, just as a point of reference, I am 6 feet 2 inches tall, range from 230 to 240 pounds, and am not fat. I don't go around casually calling people oxen. In fact, since my son is 6 foot 5 inches tall and 270 with no fat, you may say that I would be quite sensitive about it.

Now, as for me going to extremes, I believe that, if the issue is studied properly, the peak of African-American dominance in the sport of baseball took place, for economic and structural reasons, from 1920 to 1950 with a slow fade since integration, delayed somewhat by the 'Robinson effect.'

All the evidence I see, judged as fairly as I can, seems to me to point to this being true. If you accept my premise, I am hardly being extreme at all. If you do not except my premise, I will be happy to look at any reasonable proof (And straight-line demographics, i.e 10 percent of the population was this thus, are not proof of anything except that that person has no clue.)

As for my comparison of Jose Mendez to Pedro Martinez, consider these facts:

1) Both men were indisputably the greatest Latin pitchers of their time;
2) Both men were under-sized, i.e. short and light for their era (though Pedro is getting fat in his old age);
3) Both men were strikeout pitchers who threw several major league quality pitches and were well-known for their skill at changing speeds on all their pitches.

Are you going to tell me that there is no basis for comparison between them?

As for Rusie and Redding, as I already said, both men were huge fastball pitchers who threw hard all the time. They are quite comparable and Redding, if he had pitched in the Majors, would have gone into the Hall of Fame or the Hall of Merit in the first ballot. The fact that he has almost no support is a travesty.

One other thing is that your statement about the peak of Martinez and Rusie shows no understanding of context. Rusie was an extreme flamethrower who had an abnormally high peak because of a change in the rules.

In 1893 the pitching box, where you could move up to a line 50 feet from home plate, was changed to a pitching mound, where you had to stand with your back foot 60 feet from home plate and then stride forward.

This was an enormous change in pitching and pretty much screwed up every pitcher's breaking stuff. On the other hand, Rusie, who pretty much just threw hard in either style, was affected by the change less than everyone else. The change accentuated Rusie's dominance and peak.

Rusie really wasn't as good as his peak says he was.

Pedro Martinez was/is a small, somewhat fragile, extreme strikeout pitcher who is pitching in a time and era where the value of strikeout pitchers is at an all-time high and the baseball clubs seemingly have a better understanding of pitching fragility than ever before.

If Pedro had pitched in Mendez' time, his pitching skill would have 1) been burned out by overuse just like Jose, and 2) been less valuable because it was harder to strike people out.

In evaluating players, you always have to consider context. Somewhere on one of these threads, someone posted that Stan Musial was a better hitter at his peak (not career) than Joe DiMaggio, using OPS+ for proof.

But Musial was uniquely helped by his park and DiMaggio was uniquely hurt by his park. In addition, DiMaggio's career was derailed by WW2 and he missed 3 peak years; while Musial really missed one year and no peak because of the War.

In context, DiMaggio would have had a greater, much greater, peak than Musial (by context, I mean a neutral setting) and it really is not even close.

Finally, I have posted this question various ways and no one has bothered to answer it; but I'll rephrase it once again.

After integration, six of the eight greatest baseball players (all hitters, no pitchers), as measured by win shares, were African-American. It is obvious that, using the conversions that are being posted by Chris Cobb, that no Negro Leaguer would actually finish in the top 10 Wins Shares pre-integration.

This may seem intuitively right to you; but it sure as hell doesn't to me.
   113. Gadfly Posted: March 12, 2005 at 09:03 PM (#1195959)
Andrew Siegal (& Brent)-
Posts (86-100 or so)

Holy Shishkabob, Batman, someone agrees with me a little bit.

Like you, I just don't see Jud Wilson as a comp for Wade Boggs, Tony Gwynn, Rod Carew, or Paul Waner. All these men were place hitters, Wilson, by the testimony of his own contemporary Negro League players, was more of a slugger, hitting the ball as hard as he could.

As Chris Cobb asserts, this doesn't make him as great a hitter as Beckwith. Wilson hit mostly center and opposite field line drives and apparently did not loft the ball much. Beckwith was a true home run hitter and his value is greater because of this.

For example, take 1928, for which there is good information and Wilson is at his peak. Chris Cobb gives Wilson a .376 BA-.597 SA MLE for this year (Paul Waner never slugged .597 in his life, his highest SA was .543 in 1928) and his statistics are listed as:


If you take these statistics and regress them out to a full season (154 G) while using the nearest 1000 ABs of Wilson's career (stats from McMillan 10 with the above 1928 line substituted), you get:


Two notes:

1) Notice that Wilson is credited with 42(?) Stolen bases. This would seem to be evidence of Wilson's incredible aggressiveness becuase no one was or is claiming he was particularily fast.

2) Wilson's walk rate over 154 games is 102 BB. Of course, if this was adjusted for the Major Leagues, the fact that the Negro Leagues walked much less, apparently much less, than the Majors might actually make it rise.

This sure as hell doesn't look like Paul Waner.

Of course, I believe that Chris Cobb's .90-.82 BA-SA adjustments are far too low and the actual conversion factors are more like .95-.90. If you use a .95-.90 conversion factor for 1928, you have to adjust for League differences.

The 1928 Eastern Colored League had pretty much the same BA as the NL or AL but the ISA was 10 percent less. In other words, the SA conversion is canceled out by the League difference. Now the statistics, in a .95-.90 MLE conversion, look like this:


Even if you use a .90-.82 conversion factor, this still doesn't look anything like Paul Waner.

And, of course, there are two huge cavaets to this analysis, both in Wilson's favor:

1) Regression flattens out Peak Years and Wilson was undoubtably having a peak year in 1928. It is incredibly likely that Wilson would have actually hit better than this .381-.638 regressed year analysis shows in the Majors.

2) Just because you equalize something by converting it doesn't make it equal. From what I have come to understand, the Negro Leagues had a speed advantage, probably quite large, over their Major League contemporaries.

In 1928, the Negro Leagues had the same BA but 10 percent less slugging than the Majors. Some of this is probably park effect, but I think the Negro Leagues, who should have hit for a lesser BA than the Majors because of inferior balls and continued use of spitballs, hit for the same BA because of their speed advantage, i.e. beating out hits.

But this speed advantage also inflates SA. Slugging Average, even isolated SA, is not immune to the effects of speed. Speed can turn singles into doubles, doubles into triples, and triples into inside-the-park HRs. In other words, even if you equalize the Negro and Major League SA, the components are not the same.

The 90 percent isolated SA of the 1928 ECL actually understates the conversion rate for Negro League players with actual power as opposed to speed.

This is shown every time Negro League home run rates are calculated. The Negro Leagues were not hitting 90 percent of the Major League home run rate, they were hitting 50 or 60 percent or so.

It is my opinion that Negro League sluggers would have been helped quite a bit by moving to the Majors. In particular, Negro League players who hit for power would hit significantly more HRs in the Major Leagues.

This, of course, especially pertains to Beckwith, but also to Wilson.

With these two cavaets in mind, it seems to me that Jud Wilson, in his absolute peak years, would have hit around 30 HRs, batted over .400, and slugged around .650 to .700 in the Majors.

That sure as hell is not Paul Waner.

And, continuing from my last post, Wilson was the greatest hitter for BA in the Negro Leagues in the 1920s, better than Charleston or Beckwith or Oms or whoever. Does it seem intuitively right that he would NOT hit .400 in his peak seasons?
   114. Gadfly Posted: March 12, 2005 at 09:15 PM (#1195980)
On Wade Boggs-

I've got to say that I agree with Karl Magnus here, I don't think Boggs was as great as some analysis seems to show him. I had season tickets to Fenway when Boggs was in his prime and got an up close and personal look at the entire Boggs saga.

A couple of points about him:

1) Boggs actually could run pretty fast once he got going, especially first to third; but was an extremely tentative baserunner. He never just took off, but always seemed to be considering his options before getting going and then always playing it safe.

It is interesting to note that analysis of Jim Rice's career is badly hurt by his propensity for hitting into DPs, but his DPs skyrocketed after Boggs joined the team. It always seemed slightly unfair that Rice was being demerited for hitting into DPs that would never had happened with no one or someone fast and decisive on the bases.

2) Boggs was uniquely made better by playing in Fenway. Fenway was perfectly suited to his style of hitting and, in my opinion, some value has to be taken away from him because it is highly unlikely that he would have been as valuable any place else.

Once again, there has to be some allowance for context.
   115. DavidFoss Posted: March 12, 2005 at 09:38 PM (#1196004)
As for my comparison of Jose Mendez to Pedro Martinez, consider these facts:

1) Both men were indisputably the greatest Latin pitchers of their time;
2) Both men were under-sized, i.e. short and light for their era (though Pedro is getting fat in his old age);
3) Both men were strikeout pitchers who threw several major league quality pitches and were well-known for their skill at changing speeds on all their pitches.

Are you going to tell me that there is no basis for comparison between them?

Comparisons to Pedro have baggage that comes with them. Pedro has a career ERA+ of 167. He's got seasonal ERA+'s of 285, 245, 221, 212 and 196. You gotta have a lot more evidence than ethnic background, body type and general pitching style to get me to accept that the two are truly comparable.
   116. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 12, 2005 at 09:39 PM (#1196005)

I regret the, 'people would take your points more seriously...' quip that I made. That was out of line.

Did I call you fat or something in my post? Did I call you a gorilla? The reason I gave my height and weight is because it was mildly comparable to Wilson's listed weight and I am not a big person. Sorry if I offended you.

While you make decent points about context, the argument can be made that players should be judged on what they did during their times. I am willing to admit that someone like Joe Jackson may have hit more Home Runs had he played in the 1990's or something like that. However, transporting Pedro Martinez back to the deadball era and saying that he would most likely not have had as long a career? Sure Rusie was a benefactor of his time and place, but isn't most everyone who has ever been successful?

I am not going to go out of my way to add bonus points for anyone because they had some bad luck when daeling with time andplace. Hell, maybe we should be wroking on electing Sockalexis or Smokey Joe Wood. If Wood had played in the 1990's he may have pitched an extra 6 or 7 years with some of them being prime or peak seasons.

And comparing Jud Wilson to Paul Waner as a hitter is not a slap in the face since Wilson was a 3B. But color me skeptical when it comes to wilson also having 30 Home run power. I am also skptical that the 30's and 40's was the pinnacle of black baseball.
   117. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 12, 2005 at 09:56 PM (#1196022)

1. Just realized what you were saying earlier. I did not take offense to the ox or gorilla comment, I was just using myself as a data point. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

2. I know that your mini study (or whatever it was) showed that the ratio of the success of white hitters and black hitters was roughly equal in the 50's and 60's. What is it that you extrapolate to make that ratio skewered to the black hitters in the 20's, 30's, and 40's?

3. Octavio Dotel is also a slight, latin pitcher with high K rates, maybe Mendez would have been like him in the today's ball. This would mean that Mendez would be a very effective, but not elite (i.e. Rivera, Gagne), which is not as valuable as a starter. Doesn't look like a HOMer.

That may have just sounded ridiculous, but as far as I can tell the argument has as much merit as the Pedro/Mendez one.

As an aside, since the talent distribution for Negro Leagues was not anywhere near as even as the Major Leagues, does this effect MLE's? You could argue that guys like Wilson or Beckwith were playing alongside and against players who may never had sniffed the PCL if they had been white. Does that effect their NeL stats to such a degree that maybe we are over or underrating them in our conversions? Should we have some sort of tiered conversion rates for those at the top and bottom of the league. I realize we arent' converting the scrubs for this project but it may effect the stars.
   118. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 12, 2005 at 09:58 PM (#1196025)
The dotel paragraph should have reliever in their another time or two.
   119. Gadfly Posted: March 12, 2005 at 10:32 PM (#1196043)
David Foss-

You mis-characterize what I said and ignore the point. You can lead horse...

J. Schmeagol-

You misunderstand. You didn't call me fat (and I'm not); but I thought that you were insulted by my characterization of Wilson's body type because it is so close to your own, so I was explaining what I meant. In other words, I thought I had offended you.

I have always been quite happy to be large.

As far as context goes, I wouldn't give Sockalexis any extra credit for possibly not being a drunk or Wood any extra credit for maybe not injuring his thumb then shoulder in 1913. If you injure yourself, I figure you should get no credit for what might have been.

On the other hand, I am of two minds on Joe Jackson and seriously think that he would have prospered in the 1920s like Zach Wheat did. I think his era uniquely hurt him as a hitter and his career was stopped by unique forces out of his control that only applied at that time.

But DiMaggio is truly what I mean by context. I give him full credit for the damage done to his career by WW2 and by Yankee Stadium where he was only able to hit 148 HRs as opposed to 213 on the road.

The context is unique and has nothing to do with the player himself or his talents.

On Rusie, my point is this: Rusie really was no better a pitcher in 1894, it's just that everyone else was worse (thus making Rusie look better) because of a rule change. I think that that has to be considered; it is a unique context.

On Mendez, perhaps I should make my point a different way.

Mendez, in his time and place, would never had posted a 285 seasonal or 167 career ERA+ as Pedro has. However, Pedro (ignoring the fact that he wouldn't have even been allowed to pitch) would have never posted these marks in Mendez' time either. In fact, as I said, I'm quite sure that Pedro would have had his arm shredded in the 1910s after a few good years, much like Smokey Joe Wood.

OTOH, Mendez, in Pedro's time and place, would have posted a much better OPS+ than he would have in the 1910s for the simple reason that his usuage pattern probably be quite different and the value of his ability to strike men out would be maximized.

But, as I originally said, Mendez, keeping the same career path as he actually had, would have had a career today much more like Pedro's brother Ramon. I give Mendez no extra credit, though I think it is probably true, that Mendez, if he was handled today like Pedro has been handled, would have had a career quite a bit like Pedro himself.

When I 'comp' a player, I am not saying that they have the same exact value, I am saying that they have a lot of outstanding similaritis. I guess this has taught me the dangers of comping too far out of the player's actual time line.

So just change Mendez' comp to Smokey Joe Wood, who I am pretty sure that Jose has on career value, if not peak (though Mendez reportedly went 44-2 in 1909) then. But I still contend that, in context, Pedro and Mendez are much closer than David Foss' skepticism allows.
   120. Gadfly Posted: March 12, 2005 at 10:49 PM (#1196050)

1) No problem. Too much PC, I guess.

2) Basically, I am just extrapolating from my own conversions of Negro League, Winter League, etc. and what they tell me and my basic understanding of economics and structure and how they effect baseball demographics.

I'd write a long paragraph here about the Irish potato famine of 1850 and how it lead to baseball being absolutely dominated by the sons of Irish immigrants in the 1890s, but I have to go to dinner.

3) Mendez had four quality pitches (fast, curve, screw, change). I'm pretty sure that he would be a starter now too. Of course, a lot of things are just random. Tommy Lasorda ruined Ramon Martinez but traded away Pedro, who he only saw as a reliever, thus saving him. That, of course, was just luck.

I think you are badly underrating Mendez. As I said before, numerous National Leaguers faced Mendez in Cuba and stated that only Mathewson was a better pitcher than Mendez in the NL.

As for talent distribution in the Negro Leagues, you are correct. There were guys in the Negro Leagues who could not make Triple-A. However, when doing conversions, the depth of the Leagues' quality is not important only the medium.

In other words, if the Negro Leagues are 90 percent of the Majors; then, as long as you are 10 percent better than Negro League average, you are Major League average.

The only real place you have to worry about this, when talking about the Negro League stars, is at the beginning and end of their careers when they rise up or fall below that threshold.
   121. Howie Menckel Posted: March 12, 2005 at 10:52 PM (#1196056)
It's funny, I may have been Rusie's biggest critic, but I couldn't slow the tide. There's never a gadfly around when you need one!

Nonetheless, I think I eventually would have voted him into the HOM, so I hadn't revisited that thought for quite a while.

Re Rice-Boggs: Rice also hit into slightly more DPs precisely because Boggs was an on-base machine. A crappy hitter at the top of the order would have hurt Rice's RBI totals, but helped lower the DP rate. I'll say Rice will take the tradeoff, though.
   122. DavidFoss Posted: March 12, 2005 at 11:57 PM (#1196114)
Rice had both Boggs & Dwight Evans batting ahead of him in the high-GIDP years. Its still fifty years until we discuss how much to knock Rice for this. Right handed sluggers are more susceptible to GIDP's, but they also tend to love batting in Fenway. It will be an interesting discussion -- in the spring of 2007.
   123. Kelly in SD Posted: March 13, 2005 at 09:46 AM (#1196615)
Re: comments about Paul Waner.

The comments about Paul Waner got me thinking about context. Chris has already mentioned the severe differences b/t the leagues in the 1930s. But the other consideration is Waner played most of his career in Forbes Field where triples lived and home runs died. I looked up the park index for home runs in the STATS Sourcebook.
Starting in 1926:
year factor league rank
1926 56 3rd toughest
1927 71 3rd
1928 33 2nd
1929 70 3rd
1930 57 2nd
1931 75 3rd
1932 55 2nd
1933 37 2nd
1934 81 3rd
1935 78 3rd
1936 57 2nd/3rd
1937 52 2nd/3rd
1938 45 2nd
1939 65 3rd
1940 52 1st
Only one player hit more than 20 homers in a year. Only four other times did someone hit more than 15.
If Wilson spent his peak years in Forbes, I don't think he would have hit anywhere close to 30 homeruns in a season.

Waner for his career was neutral, hitting 56 at home, 53 on the road while playing for Pitt. I have no idea how many were inside-the-park. I would not be surprised if many were because of the park and how Waner approached hitting. Waner made the conscious decision to try and hit the ball down the foul lines because it would either be an extra-base hit or a foul and he could try again. While not hitting home runs, he still has the 10th most doubles and 10th most triples in history.

Waner played in a unique park and adapted his hitting to fit the park. During his years in Pitt, his career SLG was .490, and in his best years hit .370 to .380 with 65 to 80 extra-base hits. So Waner looks like a better comparison, taking park into account.

Also, looking at the National League from 1926-1940, about 1 player a year had a SLG over .600 (excluding 1929 and 1930 when it happened 16 times). It was a rarity and usually a league-leading performance.
1926 - no one
1927 - no one
1928 - Hornsby .632, Bottemley .628, Hafey .604 (they played in parks with home run factors over 130)
1929 - 7 players (only Hafey played in a neutral park, everyone else a power park)
1930 - 9 players (only Berger played in power-hurting park)
1931 - no one
1932 - Klein .646, Ott .601 (they played in the 2 best power parks)
1933 - Klein .602 (2nd best power park)
1934 - Collins .615 (119 homerun factor)
1935 - Vaughan .607 (in Pitt. Strange year, he led the league in SLG, yet was not in the top 5 in doubles, triples, or homers. He missed 17 games and led the league in walks.)
1936 - no one
1937 - Medwick .641 (triple crown, 117 homer park factor)
1938 - Mize .614 (152 park factor, 2nd best)
1939 - Mize .626 (146 park factor, 2nd best)
1940 - Mize .636 (133 park factor, 2nd best)

So, if Wilson played in the National League from 1926-1940, he may have (probably would have) had a .600 SLG if he played in a hitter's park in 1929 or 1930. Mel Ott, playing in the best home run park in the league, which he took advantage of, could not consistently have a .600 SLG. There were always 3 horrible parks for homeruns in the National League.
If he played in a hitter's park in the American League, it would be much more likely as they had 47 players between 1926 and 1940 have .600+ SLG (only 8 in 1929-1930). Even .700 is a reach I think as only Ruth 4 times, Gehrig and Foxx 3 times, and Simmons 1 time, achieved that level.

In conclusion, the .380 - .400 / 30hr / .650-.700 totals may be peak performances if he was playing in a hitter's park in the National League in 1929-30, Sportsman's Park from 1921-1925, or was having a Gehrig or Foxx peak year. Those numbers may have a been a perfect expression of his talent level under the optimal conditions if he didn't get hurt, but they are numbers that were just not reached unless you were Hornsby, Gehrig, Foxx, Ruth, or Williams. I don't think Wilson was of that level.

Man, this post is all over the place. Hope it makes some sense. Finals addled brain.

No more posting until next weekend and the end of finals, but I look forward to your comments.

PS: Wilson is a top 10 on my ballot, I don't know where yet though.
   124. Gadfly Posted: March 13, 2005 at 01:54 PM (#1196645)
Howie Menckel-

On Amos Rusie:

Sorry, but I wouldn't have been any help slowing the tide of Rusie's election if I had been voting then. Rusie, because of context, looks better than he actually was from 1893-1895; but, in the context of Baseball history, Rusie is uniquely hurt by two factors:

1) Rusie, an extreme fireballer and strikeout pitcher, pitched at a time (because there was no foul strike rule and the mound had been moved back to its present distance) when the ability to strike men out was at its all-time lowest point. The strikeout rates of his time are as low as they have and probably ever will be.

In context, his abilities would have had more value at any other time than his own.

2) Rusie, an extreme workhorse pitcher, pitched in a time in which pitching workloads were way too high because baseball had not adapted to the change in pitching distance and its effects on pitching health. The 1890s are littered with pitchers who were burned out by this problem.

In context, Rusie would have had a much greater career at any other time in baseball history. If Amos Rusie came up today, He'd probably be Roger Clemens or Nolan Ryan.

Even with all this, which I would give him no credit for, Rusie was a hell of a pitcher in his own time. I would have voted for him in a heartbeat.

On Jim Rice:

I freely admit to being a fan of Rice, so this may be biased; but I feel he has actually been underrated. Modern baseball analysis is all based on outs. Rice hit into an enormous number of double plays (all credited to him as outs) and his rating is lowered quite a bit by this.

Of course, the reason Rice hit into so many double plays is because there were so many base runners on base in front of him (with, of course, Boggs and Evans being the culprits in his worst DP years). However, because of all these base runners, Rice had a lot of RBIs to go with those DPs.

However, in sabermetric analysis, Rice gets no credit for the RBIs and a major demerit for the DP outs. It seems that, if Rice had hit eighth, had few people on base in front of him, and had less DPs but also way less RBIs, he would be considered a much better player. That doesn't seem right to me.

Sabermetrics penalizes the hitter completely for hitting into a DP, but it is actually highly dependent on line-up position and the runners on base and those runners' abilities. Rice is hugely penalized for the fact that he had a bunch of slow and/or poor base runners hitting in front of him who were always on base with no credit for any good results (RBIs).

I don't agree with that at all.

I'd think I'd vote for Jim Ed too.
   125. Gadfly Posted: March 13, 2005 at 03:16 PM (#1196669)

I agree totally with your post on these three points:

1) Jud Wilson, barring some sort of freak Brady Anderson/1930 NL type year, would have probably not hit 30 HRs or slugged between .650 to .700 in any season if he had played his career in Forbes Field.

As you state, Forbes Field was a very difficult home run/SA park.

2) Jud Wilson, barring some sort of freak Brady Anderson/1930 NL type year or Mel Ott style Polo Grounds approach, would probably not have hit 30 HRs in any season if he had played in the National League in the 1930s.

The National League deadened its ball in 1931 and made slugging, and HR hitting, much more difficult.

3) Jud Wilson, barring some sort of freak Brady Anderson/1930 NL type year, would probably not have slugged consistently over .700 if he had played in the Major Leagues.

Without checking, the only contemporary Major Leaguers who slugged over .700 more than once during Wilson's prime were Ruth, Hornsby, Gehrig, and Foxx. Their Negro League comps are Charleston, Beckwith, and Gibson; not Wilson.

However, I never claimed that Wilson would slug OVER .700; I claimed that, at his ABSOLUTE peak (i.e. best year), in the MAJOR (not just NL) Leagues, in the CONTEXT of his times (late 1920s), Wilson probably would slug 30 HRs or so with a SA from .650 to .700 in a neutral park.

So the questions are:

1) When was Jud Wilson's absolute peak; and
2) What was the Major League context at that time.

Jud Wilson peaked from 1927 to 1929, ages 30 to 32, a typical late peak for a player who also started his career late.

The Major League context from 1927 to 1929 is a very high offensive BA and SA context leading up to the 1930 BA/SA peak.

What were Jud Wilson's statistics from 1927 to 1929?

The most complete Wilson stats I know for 1927 are from MacMillan 10, from 1928 are from Gary A, and from 1929 are from the published ANL stats.

They are:
1927- 53 G, 196 AB, 92 H, 22 2B, 4 3B, 7 HR, .469 BA, 10 SB.
1928- 53 G, 194 AB, 60 R, 82 H, 21 2B, 3 3B, 12 HR, .423 BA, 18 SB.
1929- 247 AB, 63 R, 100 H, 20 2B, 4 3B, 11 HR, .405 BA, 22 SB.

Wilson's home park for these games was Bugle Field which I believe to have been a neutral park without any odd Polo Grounds type effects.

The only two unknown factors above are runs scored in 1927 and games played in 1929. Using the available information, I estimate the 1927 RS at 59, and the 1929 games played at 63.

This gives Jud Wilson a 1927 to 1929 Peak line of:

in the Negro Leagues.

I must admit that I am somewhat taken aback by 1) the 182 runs scored in 169 games and 2) the 50 stolen bases; but these stats are really irrelevant to the discussion.

Next, these numbers need to be projected in a 154 Game Major League context. I will use both my own conversion factor (.95-.90) and Chris Cobb's (.90-.82), remembering that the Negro Leagues had, at this time, about equivalent BA and ISA about 10 percent lower than the Majors.

154-580-237-57-10-27-.409-.681 (.95-.90 Rate)
154-580-225-52-09-25-.388-.638 (.90-.82 Rate)

Of course, these numbers from 1927 to 1929 are Wilson's best three years in a row without any regression; but they are actually also a larger than 154 game sample.

I think the first conversion is a pretty fair indication of how good Wilson would have been in his prime in the Majors, but note that this does not mean in his ABSOLUTE peak year.

So, given my analysis, does my claim that Wilson would have hit over 30 HRs, batted over .400, and slugged between .650 to .700 at his absolute peak stand up. I think it does, even using Chris Cobb's lesser Negro Leagues = Double A conversion factors.

In fact, remembering that the Negro League home run rates are not just 90 percent of the Majors but much less than this and that an upwards HR adjustment has be made because of this fact, I think that it is quite likely that, in his ABSOLUTE best season, Jud Wilson, in the Major Leagues, would have cleared 30 HRs, a .400 BA, and probably even a .700 SA with ease.

In his prime (best 3 to 5 seasons), Wilson would have hit around .400, slugged around .650-.700, hit 50 or so 2Bs and 10 or so 3Bs, and knocked from 20 to 30 HRs per season in the CONTEXT of his time (late 1920s) and playing field (NEUTRAL).

This is not Paul Waner (who is a very unique and interesting player in his own right).

In fact, Paul Waner is very very interesting for the simple fact that the 1920s/1930s BA-SA change seems to have absolutely no effect on his stats at all. Waner was pretty much the same hitter before and after the 1930-31 line.

Waner, who had a aim-for-the-lines place hitting attack, was unaffected by the 1931 dead ball. I think that Wilson would not have been able to make this claim.

A fascinating example of context.
   126. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 13, 2005 at 04:30 PM (#1196717)
Jim Rice is not the only slugger to have been blessed/cursed with men in front of him who had the ability to get on base. Most every one of them didn't have Rice's GIDP problem. It comes down to the fact that Rice hit the ball on the ground a lot when Boggs and Evans were on base.

I have never understood why slow runners lead to more GIDP. In many cases even if the runner is giong on the pitch, a ground ball still leads to an out at 2nd. I would think that at most a hitter gets saved from a DP by a Henderson/Hamilton type runner two maybe three times a year. If the runner is slow it shouldn't really matter more than if he is average, either way he isn't going to disrupt the defense.


Let me get this straight. You say that at his peak it is likely that Jud Wilson would have put up a few years of .400/.500/.675-.700 while playing a credible 3B. Is that correct? That makes him Ruth/Williams/Foxx with a better glove at this peak. You base this on your theory that the peak of black ballplayers in pro ballwas in the 20's/30's/40's due to their socio-economic situation. Correct?

If so color me whatever color means that I am highly skeptical.
   127. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 13, 2005 at 04:56 PM (#1196738)
On Sockalexis, couldn't you argue that he wouldn't have been a drunk in a society that wasn't so reacist toward Native Americans?

And in the 21st century Joe Wood may have only missed a few months to a year because of that arm injury, came back and been kick ass.

would coulda shoulda

My point was that Pedro Martinez pitched today, was dominant today (actually a few years ago) and should be judged on that. Jose Mendez was not as dominant as Pedro in his time and should be judged as such.
   128. Gadfly Posted: March 13, 2005 at 06:37 PM (#1196912)
Jeez Schmeag, do you actually read my posts before you respond?

I explicitly said that I give no credit to any player for what never happened. I explicitly said that I give Sockalexis or Wood no credit for what may have happened without injury or drink. I explicitly said that Mendez could not have possibly been as valuable in his time (because of context, which was the ACTUAL point) as Martinez was in his time period.

And do you actually think that SLOW runners do not lead to more DPs?

If comparing Mendez to Pedro bothers you so much just compare him to Wood or, if your mind can get around the concept that you can actually compare contemporary players to old-time players, just compare him to Ramon. I don't care.

I guess this is what a teacher would feel if they got back an essay exam done by someone who decided to treat it as multiple choice. Woulda, coulda, shoulda, my ass.

And, as far as your 'skepticism' goes, why don't you actually try to answer the question I keep posing:

Does it seem intuitively right that the Hall of Merit is using a conversion system (no offense, Chris) that would not result in a single African-American hitter being in the top 10 (and probably top 20) pre-integration hitters, especially considering the fact that, post-integration, six of the top eight are black?

Ah, to hell with it.

I actually just came back on to post this-

I have claimed in this thread that the Negro Leagues were playing a more speed oriented game than the contemporary Major Leagues. Well, if you pro-rate the six-team 1929 American Negro League SB stats to 154 games per team, you get:

10 players with 30 or more steals
6 players with 40 or more steals
2 players with 50 or more steals

(Crush Holloway 64, the great and forgotten Rap Dixon with 55, with Jud Wilson oddly coming in third at 48. Of course, the greatest SB threat by reputation, Cool Papa Bell, was in the West.)

In the Majors in 1929, sixteen teams, only two guys stole more than 30, both in the NL (Kiki Cuyler 43, Evar Swanson 33; the AL leader, Charlie Gehringer would be number 3 with 27).
   129. DavidFoss Posted: March 13, 2005 at 09:56 PM (#1197165)
Does it seem intuitively right that the Hall of Merit is using a conversion system (no offense, Chris) that would not result in a single African-American hitter being in the top 10 (and probably top 20) pre-integration hitters, especially considering the fact that, post-integration, six of the top eight are black?

You keep saying this, but I don't think its true.

Oscar Charleston says hi. I think he was so much of a no-brainer that Chris didn't even need to do an official conversion for him. Pop Lloyd conservatively translated to 490 WS which is easily top 10 in the NeL era (~1910-1947). Stearnes translated to a cross between Ott & Waner but in CF. That's top ten.
   130. DavidFoss Posted: March 13, 2005 at 10:05 PM (#1197178)
And do you actually think that SLOW runners do not lead to more DPs?

I do. Unless the runner took off with the pitch, he's pretty much a dead duck at second base no matter who it is. Its the batter's speed that matters in GIDP because it takes longer for the ball to reach first base.

This whole discussion is a distracting tangent, though. No one is docking anyone for GIDP's yet.
   131. sunnyday2 Posted: March 13, 2005 at 10:51 PM (#1197221)
Re. Chris' MLEs for NeLers, or any other statistical evaluation of the NeLers:

I think we all understand they're hypothetical. Not to say they're not statistically accurate. Not to say they're not useful, of course they're useful. But they're hypothetical. They describe an alternate universe that never existed.

As such, they are only part of the method for determining whether or not a given NeLer is the best candidate for the HoM in any given year.

So, Gad, IOW don't obsess on the statistical part of our evaluation. In the end our methods are more like Bill James'. Over here you've got the numbers. Over there, the bullshit dump. Pour them together, shake (don't stir). And then it comes out in the votes.

So, look finally at the votes. And here's the HoM so far.

C- Santop elected
1B- Suttles a strong candidate
2B- Grant elected
SS- Johnson and Lloyd elected
3B- Beckwith and Wilson strong candidates
LF- Pete Hill elected
CF- Charleston and Stearnes elected
RF- Torriente elected
P- Two Fosters and Williams elected

And I have a feeling I've missed a couple. So what exactly is the problem?
   132. sunnyday2 Posted: March 13, 2005 at 10:56 PM (#1197222)
PS. We haven't even had an election yet with Jud Wilson's name on the ballot. It seems a little premature to blast us all for underrating him.
   133. Gadfly Posted: March 13, 2005 at 11:11 PM (#1197244)

I apologize for getting testy. Let he who is without sin throw stones and all that...

David Foss-

Yes I do think that slow runners lead to more DPs for the following two reasons:

1) A fast runner can get down to second and break up the double play much more effectively than a slow one; and (more importantly):

2) A fast runner gives a manager options to try to avoid the DP, such as starting the runner, attempting to steal, etc.

I do not know the size of these effects, but I am absolutely sure that they are true.

And thank you for actually trying to answer my question. Thought I was talking to myself for a while there.

I was not aware that Chris Cobb had projected John Henry Lloyd with 490 WS; but you are wrong, that mark doesn't make the top 10 pre-integration careers.

Also, I would bet my house that Oscar Charleston, if Chris Cobb had actually done WS for him, would not top that mark.

My point is that his conversions understate hitting, not fielding. Lloyd was a shortstop with a 25 year career. Without even looking, it is very evident that Lloyd's total is being driven up to 490 by his fielding WS.

I'd bet my house that that 490 mark is the highest that any pre-integration African-American player would be credited with under Chris Cobb's projections.
   134. Gadfly Posted: March 13, 2005 at 11:17 PM (#1197255)

I'm not having a cow here now. I just like a good argument, emphasis on the good.

I actually appreciate Chris Cobb's MLEs and always try to thank him and let him know that its not personal, I just disagree.

As I said before somewhere in this thread (I think), I don't actually mind that the Negro Leaguers are getting underrated here; because I'd rather that the cream went in rather than the weirdly debatable (Ross Barnes?).
   135. sunnyday2 Posted: March 13, 2005 at 11:48 PM (#1197297)
The first election was in 1898. Ross Barnes is neither weird nor debatable according to our Constitution or our method. If we were the kind of people who thought Ross Barnes was weird probably wouldn't be much inclined to consider John Beckwith or Dick Lundy either.

But I don't mind that the pioneers are getting underrated here.
   136. DavidFoss Posted: March 13, 2005 at 11:59 PM (#1197316)
So, look finally at the votes. And here's the HoM so far.

C- Santop elected
1B- Suttles a strong candidate
2B- Grant elected
SS- Johnson and Lloyd elected
3B- Beckwith and Wilson strong candidates
LF- Pete Hill elected
CF- Charleston and Stearnes elected
RF- Torriente elected
P- Two Fosters and Williams elected

And I have a feeling I've missed a couple.

The only missing one I see is Bullet Joe Rogan.

And "strong candidate" may not be strong enough of a phrase for guys who project to be top five next year (with a sizeable gap down to #6).
   137. DavidFoss Posted: March 14, 2005 at 12:20 AM (#1197335)
I was not aware that Chris Cobb had projected John Henry Lloyd with 490 WS; but you are wrong, that mark doesn't make the top 10 pre-integration careers.

I'm wrong? Its easy to get into 'good arguments' if you make incorrect assertions in such a confident manner. :-)

1. Ruth - 756
2. Cobb - 722
3. Wagner - 655
4. Speaker - 630
5. ECollins - 574
6. Ott - 528
7. Hornsby - 502
8. Lajoie - 496
9. Gehrig - 489
10. SCrawford - 446
11. Foxx - 435
12. Waner - 423
13. FClarke - 400
13. GDavis - 398
14. BDahlen - 394
15 Burkett - 389

Plus, it could be argued that Davis, Dahlen, Burkett, Clarke, probably Lajoie, Wagner and maybe Crawford shouldn't be included in the comparison because it took the NeL's a while to fully organize.
   138. DavidFoss Posted: March 14, 2005 at 12:32 AM (#1197350)
I do not know the size of these effects, but I am absolutely sure that they are true.

We're going to have to disagree on this one.

Straight steals are going to force Rice to take more pitches and be behind in the count and sabermetrically, there are only a small handful of runners (Henderson, Raines, Carey, etc) in any given league that can do this efficiently enough to be truly effective. The Hit & Run is not something I see happening with Jim Rice at the plate. And "breaking up the double play" just doesn't happen very often (and probably leads to more injuries than its worth).

The extra half second it takes for the ball to reach first base is a much bigger deal.
   139. Gadfly Posted: March 14, 2005 at 01:16 AM (#1197427)
David Foss-

When I say 'pre-integration' careers, I simply mean every player whose career began before 1947.

When I say 'post-integration' careers, I simply mean every player whose career began after 1947.

01) 756 Babe Ruth
02) 722 Ty Cobb
03) 655 Honus Wagner
04) 634 Cy Young
05) 630 Tris Speaker
06) 604 Stan Musial
07) 574 Eddie Collins
08) 560 Walter Johnson
09) 555 Ted Williams
10) 528 Mel Ott
11) 502 Rogers Hornsby
12) 490 Nap Lajoie
13) 489 Lou Gehrig
14) 478 Kid Nichols
15) 476 Pete Alexander

POST-INTEGRATION (through 2001)
01) 643 Henry Aaron, BLACK
02) 642 Willie Mays, BLACK
03) 565 Mickey Mantle
04) 547 Pete Rose
05) 530 Rickey Henderson, BLACK
06) 523 Barry Bonds, BLACK
07) 519 Frank Robinson, BLACK
08) 512 Joe Morgan, BLACK
09) 488 Carl Yastrzemski
10) 467 Mike Schmidt
11) 450 Eddie Mathews
12) 444 Reggie Jackson, BLACK
13) 443 Al Kaline
14) 437 Eddie Murray, BLACK
15) 432 George Brett

By this standard, John Henry Lloyd, with 490 WS, would rank 13, just barely ahead of Lou Gehrig, despite being credited with a 24 year career by Chris Cobb's analysis versus Gehrig's death interrupted 15 years.

If you want to remove Musial and Williams because their careers spanned integration, that still makes Lloyd only number 11.

If you want to believe the greatest 12 players, whose careers started before integration, were all white, be my guest. But I think it's patently ridiculous.

And, as I stated, Lloyd's WS are heavily weighted towards fielding in Chris Cobb's analysis.

347 hitting
143 fielding
490 total

Wagner, who many contemporaries say was the equal of Lloyd, has WS totals of:

514 batting
142 fielding
656 total (Credited with 655 after rounding)

Of course this is with Lloyd having a 24 year career and Wagner having a 21 year career.

Comparing them just from ages 23 to 43, Wagner is 514-142 and Lloyd is 329-139.

Wagner was a great great hitter and I personally think that he was a better hitter than John Henry; but no way in hell do I think he was 56 percent better.

All I am saying is that I think that Chris Cobb's Negro League WS estimates are off by a significant extent, probably around 33 percent or so.

You can agree or disagree with my opinion all you want.
   140. karlmagnus Posted: March 14, 2005 at 02:11 AM (#1197499)
I think they're off, but in the other direction. You would not expect more than 1 of the top 10 in the 1910-47 period to be an NL'er and Lloyd's right there at #9. Charleston and Gibson are up there, too. There's no question in my mind that we are on the way to electing far too many NLers. Having said that, most of the ones we are electing appear to be the right ones, with the possible exception of the two Fosters and HR Johnson.

Chris's NL estimates are no way off by 33%, which would give Lloyd the ludicrous figure of 735WS. I am worried about them being too high, partly because I think we are overrating the quality of pitching in the NL -- there are few great African-American pitchers post-integration and if that was true prior to integration we are giving NL hitters too much credit.

Having said that, I am confident that Chris' estimates scatter around reality, as one would expect, and that "truth" for each player lies between about 85% and 105% of Chris' estimates, with Chris' average being a little generaous. But frankly, without Chris' estimates, I think the HOM electorate would do a much worse job.
   141. Gadfly Posted: March 14, 2005 at 04:51 AM (#1197648)
Ah, Karl Magnus, the voice of reason. I knew our agreement on Boggs was too good to last.

First off, your math is off. Increasing 490 by 33 percent yields 652, not the 'ludicrous' figure of 735. I think that 652 WS for John Henry Lloyd, if he had been able to play in the Major Leagues of his time, is quite reasonable.

The two Negro League players that I would expect to be one-two in WS pre-integration are Oscar Charleston and John Henry Lloyd.

But, of course, even the reduced figure of 490 for Lloyd is too much for you. You say that, in fact, the figures are off in the other direction.

If you reduce JHL's WS by 33 percent, his 490 WS becomes 328. This would make the greatest pre-integration African-American player something like number 76 in pre-integration WS. In other words, the 75 greatest baseball players pre-integration were all white.

The only word for that is absurd.

Also, of course, you seize on the notion that has been forwarded that, since African-American pitchers after integration are scarce, the Negro League hitters were preying on some lousy Negro League pitchers and inflating their statistics.

The very process of conversion itself invalidates that theory. If a hitter goes from one league to another and retains 110 or 100 or 90 percent of his value; then, by definition, the level of pitching talent of that first league is 110 or 100 or 90 percent of the second league.

The inferior Negro League pitching theory is a complete canard, put forth by those who simply cannot accept the fact that there were black players just as great or greater than all the pre-integration white baseball idols.

Is there anyone out there who can see the forest for the trees?
   142. DavidFoss Posted: March 14, 2005 at 05:02 AM (#1197657)
If you want to remove Musial and Williams because their careers spanned integration, that still makes Lloyd only number 11.

Sorry for the confusion. I was removing Musial & Williams -- and I wasn't including pitchers either.
   143. Gadfly Posted: March 14, 2005 at 05:17 AM (#1197680)
David Foss-

No problem. It was just a question of definition, like Bill Clinton's take on the meaning of the word sex. Reasonable people can differ if the don't know the ground rules each other are working under.
   144. DavidFoss Posted: March 14, 2005 at 05:30 AM (#1197697)
No problem. It was just a question of definition, like Bill Clinton's take on the meaning of the word sex. Reasonable people can differ if the don't know the ground rules each other are working under.

You're in a very charming mood this evening. :-)

You specifically mentioned hitters above, so I hope this means that you get to be Bill in this analogy. :-)
   145. Daryn Posted: March 14, 2005 at 03:04 PM (#1197985)

I can see the forest for the trees. I think at least half the voters here accept some of your general premises. I think between 3 and 5 of the top 10 pre-integration players would have been black. And I think that is recognized here, with Charleston, LLoyd, Wiliams, Gibson (to come), Paige (to come) all being accorded no-brainer status. I think the tougher calls are deciding who are the right 300-400 WS players -- are Suttles, Beckwith and Wilson all Hall worthy, and if not which one's are, and are we overlooking someone. And if those three go in, are we being too hard on the next level of Lundy, Moore, Marcelle, Johnson. Maybe we are, maybe we are not. Translations of the superstars may turn out to be low because of the regressive nature of the translations - I'm not sure it means that the translations for the stars are too low too.

In the end it seems clear that 20-25 NeLers will go in our Hall, almost all out of a 35 year period. Our project covers 140 years and about 210 players -- every 35 years produces about 50 players, so 40% black during this period can't be outrageous. It could be low, some might say it's a little high, but it is in the realm of reasonableness.
   146. TomH Posted: March 14, 2005 at 03:52 PM (#1198076)
Trees?: I'll have Suttles and Beckwith and Wilson on my ballot. They are personally ranked #6, 9, and 10 among NeL who played mostly after 1905 (this excludes Frank Grant).

Forest?: I have Wilson ranked #34 among non-pitchers since 1905 out of all eligibles. 10 NeL out of 34? I can see that being a bit low, but there are a lot of NeL candidates ahead who will bring that % up. My forest appears about one-third dark-skinned from 1910ish thru 1945.
   147. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 14, 2005 at 04:05 PM (#1198097)
In the end it seems clear that 20-25 NeLers will go in our Hall, almost all out of a 35 year period. Our project covers 140 years and about 210 players -- every 35 years produces about 50 players, so 40% black during this period can't be outrageous. It could be low, some might say it's a little high, but it is in the realm of reasonableness.

Well said, Daryn.
   148. karlmagnus Posted: March 14, 2005 at 04:57 PM (#1198169)
40% during that period is demographically 4 times too many, but don't let that worry you.
   149. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 14, 2005 at 05:05 PM (#1198183)
40% during that period is demographically 4 times too many, but don't let that worry you.

Shouldn't we be dealing with the percentage of players who were actively playing ball, rather than as a percentage of the total population?
   150. karlmagnus Posted: March 14, 2005 at 05:15 PM (#1198201)
If you add in all the minor leagues of that period, which you must, I bet you still come to 10%. It's an interesting question, though.
   151. Daryn Posted: March 14, 2005 at 06:30 PM (#1198321)

I just don't accept that demographics are the way to go. There are so many reasons why, that have been discussed to death on this thread. And I think you only consider demographics to be one factor, since your PHOM (if it exists) even seems to include a few more NeLers than the demographics would suggest is correct.

You are much more reasonable on this issue than you let on some times. ;)
   152. karlmagnus Posted: March 14, 2005 at 06:43 PM (#1198334)
The further away from the demographics the consensus gets the more unreasonable I become :-))

There's plenty of evidence that we should end up above the rigid 10%, and my PHOM will include more NLers than 12 (which is already 12% of those we'll elect in 1910-64), but the demographics act as an anchor, that starts pulling very hard when we seem to be getting too far from it. I think Jud Wilson, Beckwith and Suttles were all worthy players, but at the level where at most 1 of them should probably go into the HOM (if 2, then someone else shouldn't.) Wilson would be my choice of those 3, with Suttles out and Beckwith probably just out; I recognise that others may differ, but think that voting for all 3 is simply straying too far from the demographically reasonable.
   153. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 14, 2005 at 10:00 PM (#1198700)

Time for my reconciliation post. It seems we will just have to agree to disagree. On one end of the spectrum are guys like you and David C. Jones, who are very generous (or whatever word you want to use) to NeL players compared to the rest of the electorate. On the other end are guys like karl and yest who are harder on them. I am more in the middle, I believe, and have just as many problems with their rankings of these players as I do with yours.

I undestand your theory on the peak of black baseball players, but I dont' necessarily buy it. I think the peak was the 50's, 60's, maybe the 70's, for reason beyond mere demographics and economic situation. Things like, the better coaching and training available in MLB helped a few more guys realize their potential.

You could argue that I am beign unfair since black players din't have access to that training, but then wouldn't you have to start looking at more west coast 19th century players who never made it to the east coast to play prob all? It is a slippery slope and everyone must make a cut off somewhere.

I used Wood and Sockalexis as examples that one can take the context argument way too far, though you didn't take it that far obviously. Was it hyperbole? yes.

And on DP's I believe that there is a samll advantage between having Henderson and an average runner on first (though that advantage for a particular batter's DP rate is minimal). However, a slow runner shouldn't change possible DP outcomes more than an average runner. If the guy ain't going to get to 2B in time, he ain't gong to get to 2B in time.
   154. Gary A Posted: March 15, 2005 at 05:10 AM (#1199300)
If you add in all the minor leagues of that period, which you must, I bet you still come to 10%. It's an interesting question, though.

Well, to take 1921, one season I happen to know pretty well. There were to my knowledge three operating black leagues, the Negro National League, the Southern League, and the Southeastern League (I’ve found mentions of a Texas League and a Western League, but know nothing about them.). There were also many independent teams comparable in quality to league teams, including most of the important eastern clubs; without trying too hard, I was able to list a total of 44 professional black baseball teams (without counting many less important or lesser-known teams).

In all of Organized Baseball, down to Class D, there were 192 teams. That would make black teams 18.6% of the total. If you also count the most important white semipro teams (Tesreau Bears, Bushwicks, Logan Squares, etc.) and take into account the smaller rosters of black teams (at least compared to the majors and higher minors), the black percentage of total professional players could be pushed a little lower (though you could also up the number of black teams to 50 or more).

It's also important to note that 62 OB teams, or 32% of the total, were Class D, the bottom tier of a five-tier minor league system. Structurally, there simply couldn't have been five tiers of minors in the Negro Leagues. Ten percent of the population might be able to produce more than its share of baseball talent (or musical talent, or whatever), but it couldn’t support a complete simulacrum of Organized Baseball at all levels. The *concentrations* of population (not necessarily the total number of people) wouldn’t be high enough at this level to support professional teams.

So you'd have to question how important the number of white Class D teams really is in determining the relative quality of the very best black and white players.
   155. Gary A Posted: March 16, 2005 at 12:50 AM (#1200718)
Going through this thread again, I came across something Gadfly wrote (much) earlier:
Wilson (who advised Raymond Dandridge, I think, to always charge the ball and play it off your body) looked brutal out there but was in fact very functionally effective.

I am almost certain that I read something in a 1928 newspaper about just this, describing Wilson as doing anything to knock the ball down, letting it hit him in the chest or whatever, then scrambling to throw runners out. I can't seem to track the quote down, though.
   156. Tiboreau Posted: March 16, 2005 at 02:58 AM (#1200862)
From John Holway's Blackball Stars:

Jud played third base the same way. He didn't catch ground balls, he blocked them with his chest. The hottest grounders bounced off it, he picked the ball up and got his man at first.

Judy Johnson shook his head. "I often wonder why Wilson didn't put the glove on his chest," he said. "He got hit more up there than he did in his glove."

"He just smothered the ball," said Ted Page. "And he had a slinghshot for a right arm."

"He could throw lightening out," Stephens agreed.

Actually Wilson was an effective fielder. A decade later he gave Ray Dandridge some key advice on playing third. Ray, then a youngster with Newark, was waiting on ground balls and just missing the runners at first base. "Kid," Wilson told him, "always charge the ball." Dandridge tried it and discovered that "Boojum was right." Ray went on to become the Brooks Robinson of the black leagues.

Unfortunately, Holway doesn't include any footnotes to indicate where he arrived at this information. BTW, the first sentence refers to Wilson's tendency to crowd the plate and his willingness to take one for the team.
   157. Brent Posted: March 17, 2005 at 05:45 AM (#1202628)
Several people have noted the similarity of Chris's MLEs for Wilson to the major league record of Wade Boggs. I'd just like to remind people that the similarity in records does not necessarily imply that their records will convert to the same win shares. In fact, due to the way the WS deals with the DH rule, it is very likely that Wilson (or any other player in a league without the DH) will be projected to have significantly more WS than Boggs. As James discussed on pp. 211-13 of Win Shares, a batter with the same ability in a league with the DH rule has less offensive impact, because the offense is spread among 9 hitters rather than 8. Therefore, James credits the batter in the DH-league with fewer WS.

It will be many years until we need to decide how to deal with post-DH candidates. However, we should expect a hitter with the same OPS+ and playing time as Boggs playing in a pre-DH league of the 1920s or 30s to be credited with significantly more batting WS than Boggs was. (Boggs has a total of 394 WS). Perhaps one of you can estimate how large the effect of the DH would be.
   158. TomH Posted: March 17, 2005 at 12:36 PM (#1202777)
my off-thecuff estimates is Boggs lost 5%-6% of his WS from the DH. The pitcher bats once per 9, except it's at the bottom of the order, and he gets PH for at times, so I would only remove 7%-8% from the offensive side of WS for this. The defense is unaffected.

by that is by no means a thorough analysis.
   159. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 17, 2005 at 02:26 PM (#1202836)
Of course Boggs played 162 games a season. Does Chris do his Win Shares setimates for 154 or 162 game seasons? And how much of a difference does it make?

Maybe I will do a by-no-means-systematic analysis of my own question.

Adding eight games to a player's total means usually four more wins or 12 Win Shares that that particular player can now pull from (I know that those on good teams would have more to spread around, but there are usually better players on those teams).

However, even a guy like Babe Ruth wouldn't normally get more than 2 of those WS right? And a HOM type player should get at least 1 per season in his prime I would think. So would a 1-2 WS boost be about right for a 162 games season?

In a 25 WS season (the base I use to measure peak) 1 WS is 4% and 2 WS is 8%. So if my out-of-my-ass calculations here are correct the DH league factor is just about negated by the 162 game schedule. Am I right? If so, the players we will have to worry about are the ones that play in non-DH 162 game leagues, like the NL 1961-present (excluding '94 and '81 of course) and the AL 1961 to 1973 (??).

Does this make sense?
   160. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 21, 2005 at 03:14 AM (#1209110)
I posted my ballot today and had Beckwith 7th and Wilson 8th because I think that Beckwith may have been the better defensive player. Many of the comments I see regarding Beckwith have him downgraded b/c of his defense (which is entirely defensible). However, many of these people aren't downgrading Wilson as well, though I have the same doubts about him. IO am guessing that Wilson isn't being downgraded for his defense as the evidence is pretty clear that they had very similar value as hitters.

So am I wrong in thinking that Beckwith had a little more defensive value? I base this on the fact that beckwith played SS in the NeL and spent less time at 1B in the NeL. I have Wilson with a few more games at 1B than 3B (he seems to have played more seasons as a 1B in the Negro Leagues than a 1B) and Beckwith being a 3B with his final 5-6 years at 1B. Am I wrong in thinking this? It find it to be pretty important since I think that only one newbie will make my PHOM this year.
   161. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 21, 2005 at 03:37 AM (#1209149)
So am I wrong in thinking that Beckwith had a little more defensive value?

I would think so, Mark.

IO am guessing that Wilson isn't being downgraded for his defense as the evidence is pretty clear that they had very similar value as hitters.

Again, you may be right.
   162. Gary A Posted: March 21, 2005 at 05:21 AM (#1209311)
Wilson spent 1923-25, 34-37 at 1b (7 seasons).
He spent 1926-33, 38-39, and 41 at 3b (11 seasons).
For 1940 he's listed as utility. (I imagine most people are cutting his career by 1941 at the latest). (Earlier I had mistakenly listed him at 1b for 1926.)

Still haven't had a chance to look over his box scores to check on this positional info. Will get to it by tomorrow night I hope.

When Beckwith and Wilson played on the same team, Beckwith was at short, Wilson at first.

Overall, I'd say Beckwith was more valuable both as a hitter (by a little) and as a fielder (by more), but that Wilson had a longer career.
   163. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: March 21, 2005 at 08:16 PM (#1209967)
Thanks Gary. Those final years at 3B and UT, 38-41 are the ones that I don't give him much Major League credit for. Remember, however, that seasons of below average value (whether because of performance, injury, coach's decision, etc.) only help a player in adding to his career totals in my system. My top concerns were value at or above average and peak performance.

Right now it looks like I will have Beckwith ahead of Wilson, with Suttles as my top NeL player. I am, however, very open to persuastion here.
   164. Chris Cobb Posted: March 24, 2005 at 03:12 AM (#1213594)
Jud Wilson Win Shares, 1922-1938

Year BWS  FWS Total
1922 14.3 1.7 16.0
1923 19.9 2.8 22.7
1924 18.2 2.3 20.5
1925 24.5 3.6 28.1
1926 21.6 3.4 25
1927 30.2 4.0 34.2
1928 24.0 3.7 27.7
1929 21.8 2.9 24.7
1930 19.4 5.2 24.6
1931 23.7 4.9 28.6
1932 18.0 4.8 22.8
1933 26.2 4.7 30.9
1934 15.9 4.6 20.5
1935 15.4 3.0 18.4
1936 15.0 2.4 17.4
1937  8.8 1.5 10.3
1938  3.2 2.3  5.5
tot 320.1 57.8 377.9

Notes on fielding win shares

I took Pete Rose as the basic model and made some adjustments from there.

Using Rose
as fielding comp,
C+ as 3B 3.7 ws/1000 on "Depression-era" scale
B+ as 1B 1.93 ws/1000
C+ in OF 2.55 ws/1000
C as 2B 3.10 ws/1000
   165. Brent Posted: March 24, 2005 at 03:41 AM (#1213672)
Thanks, Chris!
   166. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 24, 2005 at 03:48 AM (#1213696)
tot 320.1 57.8 377.9

Yeah, that's a HoMer. :-) I might have to move him up now.

Thanks, Chris!
   167. andrew siegel Posted: March 24, 2005 at 04:07 PM (#1214511)
So, Wilson would sit in Bill James's chart with the following information:

Total Win Shares: 378
Best 3 (non-consecutive): 34, 31, 29
Best 5 (consecutive): 141
WS/162 games: 26.17

For a guy who who is more a 3B than anything else, that easily puts him in the top half of the HoM. Based on Chris's numbers (which I think might be a bit low), he's a clear number 2 this week.
   168. Michael Bass Posted: March 24, 2005 at 04:18 PM (#1214535)
Yeah, he's looking very much #2 to me. (I haven't ranked Lyons yet, and he will be on my ballot, possibly high, but probably not #2)

Thanks, Chris!
   169. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 24, 2005 at 04:37 PM (#1214575)
He's a clear #2 for me, guys. I'll be looking foward to creating his plaque in the future.
   170. Paul Wendt Posted: March 28, 2005 at 02:50 AM (#1220218)
jschmeagol #59
Maybe I will do a by-no-means-systematic analysis of my own question.

I doubt that anything short of systematic analysis is useful here :-(
Fortunately, there is no HOM need for useful analysis yet ;-)

In a 25 WS season (the base I use to measure peak) 1 WS is 4% and 2 WS is 8%. So if my out-of-my-#### calculations here are correct the DH league factor is just about negated by the 162 game schedule. Am I right?

Offhand, I suggest 5% which is the difference in length of season, 8/154 or 8/162.

If so, the players we will have to worry about are the ones that play in non-DH 162 game leagues, like the NL 1961-present (excluding '94 and '81 of course) and the AL 1961 to 1973 (??). Does this make sense?

I think we have the data to do the systematic analysis for each decade or something like that, which is no more difficult than constructing a one-size-fits-nothing-well all-time model of a major league without the DH. The share of nearly pure pitchers in all pitcher seasons has been high for 100 years and the exceptions such as several Wes Ferrell seasons are easy to identify. So the most important components of the model, such as pitcher share of PAs and pitcher OPS+, will be easy enough to generate for any time period. If PH batting data is not available, it will be good enough to use the league-average as an estimate, I hope.
   171. Carl G Posted: March 28, 2005 at 08:41 PM (#1221392)
In the MLE's, can I assume that games played are adjusted to a 162-gm schedule or a 154-gm schedule?
   172. Chris Cobb Posted: March 28, 2005 at 09:23 PM (#1221424)
In the MLE's, can I assume that games played are adjusted to a 162-gm schedule or a 154-gm schedule?

a 154-game schedule. They are meant to show what the equivalent performance of the player would have been, had he played in the majors rather than the Negro Leagues, in that particular season. So, since these were 154-game seasons, the MLEs are projected for 154 games.
   173. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: March 28, 2005 at 09:23 PM (#1221425)
In the MLE's, can I assume that games played are adjusted to a 162-gm schedule or a 154-gm schedule?

The latter, Carl.
   174. DavidFoss Posted: March 30, 2005 at 03:53 AM (#1223410)
Jud Wilson OPS+ totals report

9879 PA
8469 AB
2846 H
3788 TB

JWilson -- 0.336/0.431/0.447
Context -- (0.290/0.350/0.410)
Plusses -- 116/123/109

OPS+ -- 132
   175. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 05:26 AM (#1228719)
It may have been on a different thread, but I promised to look up some details about what positions Wilson played on the 1923-25 Black Sox. I don't have enough material on 1925 to say, but I was able to look at the 1923-24 Baltimore Afro-American. This wouldn't be complete, but it's a pretty good swath of the Black Sox schedule.

For 1923:

Wilson: 1b-23, lf-3, ss-2, 2b-2, 3b-1

Third base: Lee Miller-17, Julio Rojo-6, Ed Poles-4; Cleveland Smith-3; Doc Sykes-1; Jud Wilson-1. (The 3b is missing in two box scores against Hilldale.) (Holway lists Rojo as the Black Sox 3b this year.)

For 1924:

Wilson: 1b-38, 2b-9, cf-2, lf-2

Third base: Henry Blackman-29, Harry Jeffries-9, Roy Ford-6, Connie Day-3, Ed Poles-2, John Beckwith-1 (Holway lists Blackman.)

Beckwith played shortstop in nearly every game after he joined the team. Blackman died mid-season; at first Roy Ford took his place, then Harry Jeffries.
   176. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 05:49 AM (#1228737)
One thing that's interesting about Wilson is how late his career starts. If Gadfly's revised birth date for him (1897) is correct, he was already 26 by 1923; I haven't been able to find out what he was doing before then. Whether he was born in 1897 or 1899, his age would be right for military service in WWI. He must have played baseball somewhere before 1923, though.

The best clue I've found so far is in 1921. There were at least three good second-tier black teams in Washington, D.C.: the Washington Braves (featuring Nip Winters), the LeDroit Tigers, and the Washington Athletics. For the Athletics in 1921, somebody named Wilson was playing first base (and a little right field) and batting cleanup, playing against the other D.C. teams and other second-tier clubs like the Pennsylvania Red Caps.

I don't have any box scores for 1922, but I did find two references to the Washington Athletics in the Post for that year.
   177. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: April 03, 2005 at 06:05 AM (#1228752)
Good detective work, Gary. If Gadfly is correct regarding his actual year of birth (I would love to check the 1900 Census to see how old he was on that document, BTW), then those missing seasons would probably throw him into 400+ WS territory fairly easily.
   178. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 06:49 AM (#1228820)
One correction--Wilson started with the Black Sox in 1922, at the age of 25.
   179. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 06:51 AM (#1228822)
I should also add that Wilson, born in Remington, Va., is called by Riley a product of the D.C. sandlots--that's why I was looking at Washington teams to begin with. I'll see if I can find anything for 1920 or before.
   180. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 06:57 AM (#1228828)
Btw, the Lee Miller who played third base for the Black Sox in 1923 was a well-known veteran of eastern teams, regarded as a decent defensive player (which he must have been, as he didn't hit much and always batted in the lower part of the order).

1923 was his last year in black baseball. Riley reports that Miller was killed when he passed out drunk in the street and "someone pounded his head on a concrete sidewalk." I don't know if this happened in 1923 or not (that's not a year I've done much research on). Didn't see anything in the Afro-American about it (but then I wasn't looking).
   181. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: April 03, 2005 at 03:03 PM (#1228999)
1923 was his last year in black baseball. Riley reports that Miller was killed when he passed out drunk in the street and "someone pounded his head on a concrete sidewalk."

I'm surprised that Beckwith wasn't also blamed for that. :-)
   182. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 06:30 PM (#1229226)
Also, in 1922 Holway lists Wilson at 1b, Lee Miller at 2b, Roy Ford as ss, and at 3b Buck Ridgely (who I think was more usually a 2b).
   183. Gary A Posted: April 03, 2005 at 06:36 PM (#1229237)
I overlooked these paragraphs in Gadfly's earlier post, #15 on page 1:

Wilson was born in Remington, VA; but grew up in Washington, DC. His published birth year of 1899 is inaccurate, he was born in 1897 according to Census records. Interestingly, Wilson told Social Security that he was born in 1894 so that his benefits would start early. He might have been slightly crazy but he wasn't dumb.
Wilson served in the Military in World War One and then played semi-pro ball in the Washington area from 1919 to 1921. Scrappy Brown, a great early basketball player who also played some pro ball and was also from Washington, recruited him for the Baltimore Black Sox in 1922.

One interesting aspect of Wilson is that he apparently didn't like change. Wilson didn't want to leave his hometown in 1922 and go to Baltimore, was homesick, and had to be talked into staying by Brown.
   184. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: July 16, 2008 at 04:07 AM (#2859411)
Chris Cobb, could you post what % of each season you gave Wilson at each position so I can convert his FWS into FWAA? Thanks, dude.
   185. Chris Cobb Posted: July 17, 2008 at 12:31 AM (#2861830)

I can't find the original data, but a bit of calculating produces the following positional splits, by season.

1922 100 g 1B
1923 154 g 1B
1924 145 g 1B
1925 87 g 1B, 67 g 3B
1926 56 g 1B, 76 g 3B
1927 60 g 1B, 92 g 3B
1928 30 g 2B, 90 g 3B
1929 75 g 1B, 75 g OF
1930 154 g 3B
1931 152 g 3B
1932 147 g 3B
1933 154 g 3B
1934 154 g 3B
1935 77 g 1B, 77 g OF
1936 100% 1B
1937 44 g 1B, 24 g 3B
1938 85 g 1B, 25 g 3B
   186. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: July 19, 2008 at 05:23 PM (#2864835)
Jud Wilson, in my WARP, assuming league-average baserunning, after standard deviation adjustments:

Year SFrac BWAA    BRWA FWAA Replc    WARP
1922  0.65  2.4     0.0  0.2  
-0.6     3.2
1923  1.00  4.3     0.0  0.4  
-0.8     5.6
1924  0.94  3.1     0.0  0.0  
-0.8     4.0
1925  0.99  5.1     0.0  0.0  
-1.3     6.4
1926  0.87  4.2     0.0 
-0.1  -1.2     5.3
1927  0.99  6.4     0.0 
-0.2  -1.4     7.6
1928  0.79  5.8     0.0 
-0.4  -1.5     7.0
1929  0.98  5.1     0.0  0.3  
-0.6     6.1
1930  0.98  2.8     0.0  0.0  
-1.8     4.7
1931  0.98  4.1     0.0  0.0  
-1.8     5.9
1932  0.94  2.8     0.0  0.0  
-1.7     4.5
1933  1.02  4.8     0.0 
-0.4  -1.9     6.3
1934  1.00  2.9     0.0 
-0.1  -1.8     4.6
1935  0.99  2.2     0.0  0.3  
-0.8     3.3
1936  0.96  2.2     0.0  0.2  
-0.8     3.2
1937  0.44  1.4     0.0  0.1  
-0.5     2.0
1938  0.72 
-1.4     0.0  0.2  -0.7    -0.5
TOTL 15.24 58.4     0.0  0.5 
-20.1    79.0
TXBR 14.52 59.8     0.0  0.3 
-19.4    79.5
AVRG  1.00  3.8     0.0  0.0  
-1.3     5.2 

In the salary estimator, this puts him at a very beefy $226M. That's comfortably above all post-1893 MLB 3B besides the big four (and is probably right where Larry will be after this year). Does this fit with where others are seeing him?
   187. Chris Cobb Posted: July 19, 2008 at 06:24 PM (#2864866)
Does this fit with where others are seeing him?

That's exactly where I have him.

(Incidentally, that means that, when he retired, Jud Wilson was the best third baseman of all time, and he would retain that distinction until Eddie Mathews came along. Who knew?)
   188. Paul Wendt Posted: July 20, 2008 at 06:57 PM (#2865588)
Back in Only the Ball was White, Bob Peterson dubbed him the one thirdbaseman "occasionally mentioned among the greats" behind the four "most often selected as the best"
Judson (Bojung) Wilson was not in the same class with Dandridge, Johnson, Marcelle, or Malarcher as a defensive third baseman, but as a hitter he had few peers during his long career. Jimmie Crutchfieldl remembers, "He was not a good third baseman, but he could play enough third base not to hurt you, and he could hit everything in sight"
   189. DL from MN Posted: July 21, 2008 at 01:41 PM (#2866310)
Honestly, that's above where I had him and would vault him up above Boggs and Brett. He's certainly on par with those two.
   190. David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R) Posted: July 21, 2008 at 02:41 PM (#2866376)
Paul Wendt, that remark seems to suggest Wilson was not a league-average 3B as Chris has him but more in the -5 to -10 range. I might subjectively knock off about 5 wins from his career for that--still not enough to get him below Santo.

DL from MN, above Boggs and Brett, really? It's roughly the same career value (albeit only if he was actually a league average 3B, which he probably wasn't given a) that comment and b) the moving around the diamond to 1B and OF), but with a substantially lower peak (although we do know that MLE's flatten peak).
   191. DL from MN Posted: July 21, 2008 at 03:07 PM (#2866397)
Just below Boggs and Brett if he's a -2.5 glove. Mathews was a -4.5 so it's possible that Jud Wilson was that bad also. I agree, he won't get lower than 5th.
   192. JoeD has the Imperial March Stuck in His Head Posted: July 23, 2008 at 03:00 PM (#2869383)
Wow interesting. This seems high to me, but I'll move him up from where I had him on my prelim for sure. I guess I was underrating him some.
   193. Chris Cobb Posted: July 24, 2008 at 12:02 AM (#2870149)
Paul Wendt, that remark seems to suggest Wilson was not a league-average 3B as Chris has him but more in the -5 to -10 range.

The letter grade going with his career 3B rate is C+, which means he is below average: average in win shares is defined as the line between B- and C+. His rate may well be average for a modern third baseman, but James treats the 1930s as a transitional decade, in which third base is assigned more defensive value than it is for the post-war game, but less than it is for the deadball game. Second base transitions similarly. For a 1920s-1930s 3B, I projected Wilson as a little bit below average. A little below average might still be a bit generous, but it isn't average.
   194. Paul Wendt Posted: September 29, 2010 at 05:57 PM (#3651329)
For reference,
Jud Wilson #64, by Chris Cobb, "Jud Wilso MLEs"
Jud Wilson #2, by Chris Cobb, "Seasonal Data from holway"

Here are the fielding positions reported by holway (from #2).
1920s: -- -- 1b 1b 1b 1b 3b 3b 2b 1b
1930s: 3b 3b 3b 3b 1b 1b 1b 1b 3b 3b
1940s: ut ut 2b -- ut

Howie Menckel,
In your work on Hall of Merit members by year and fielding position, do you generally rely on data such as this for the blackball players: a sequence of positions, one per season?

If so, how do you handle utility 'ut'?

Have you compiled the data (whatever they may be) for all the blackball HOM members?

Vaguely I recall some discussion of developing some quantitative data on fielding positions.

Summary for Wilson: 22 seasons distributed thus,
1b 9, 2b 2, 3b 8, ut 3
   195. KJOK Posted: September 17, 2011 at 07:55 AM (#3927883)
   196. KJOK Posted: September 17, 2011 at 04:54 PM (#3928073)
   197. KJOK Posted: September 17, 2011 at 08:17 PM (#3928167)
   198. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: November 16, 2017 at 03:44 PM (#5577566)
Please click through for my latest Jud Wilson MLEs.

Some seasons aren’t yet available on the Negro Leagues DB, and the MLE will be updated as new info comes to light.

Now showing 77.3 WAR.
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