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

Thursday, October 03, 2019

Most Meritorious Player: 1920 Results

Congratulations to Babe Ruth, our unanimous pick for 1920 Most Meritorious Player!

Player Name	pts	ballots	1sts
Babe Ruth	90	6	6
Rogers Hornsby	76	6	0
Pete Alexander	73	6	0
Tris Speaker	65	6	0
George Sisler	63	5	0
Eddie Collins	51	6	0
Stan Coveleski	39	5	0
Joe Jackson	34	4	0
Jim Bagby	31	4	0
Oscar Charleston	30	3	0
Cristobal Torriente	23	2	0
Ross Youngs	22	3	0
Burleigh Grimes	12	1	0
John Henry Lloyd	8	1	0
Sam Rice	7	1	0
Dave Bancroft	6	1	0
DL from MN Posted: October 03, 2019 at 01:14 PM | 3 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. DL from MN Posted: October 03, 2019 at 01:20 PM (#5885938)
Player Name # years on ballot
Tris Speaker 12
John H Lloyd 12
Eddie Collins 9
Pete Alexander 7
Joe Jackson 7
Cristobal Torriente 7
Babe Ruth 5
Rogers Hornsby 5
Stan Coveleski 4
George Sisler 3
Oscar Charleston 3
   2. Qufini Posted: October 04, 2019 at 09:13 AM (#5886354)
Not much to say about Babe Ruth's 2nd MMP except that he's going to win a bunch more. I suppose I could note that he joins Barry Bonds as the only players to win MMPs for two different franchises.

Pete Alexander picks up his 4th pitching MMP to go with the three straight he won from 1915 to '17. Ol' Pete joins Christy Mathewson, Walter Johnson, Roger Clemens and Greg Maddux as pitchers with 4 or more pitching MMPs while moving ahead of three-time recipients Ed Walsh, Robin Roberts, Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson and Pedro Martinez.

Stan Coveleski is the AL's pitching MMP. Coveleski joins a respectable list of Indians who have won the award: Bob Feller ('40), Early Wynn ('51, '54, '56), Sam McDowell ('65, '70), Gaylord Perry ('72, '74), CC Sabathia ('07), Cliff Lee ('08) and Corey Kluber ('14, '17).

Rogers Hornsby is named NL MMP for the first time. Rajah is the first position player to win this award since Honus Wagner in 1912- marking an unofficial end to the deadball era. Hornsby was previously named the NL's position player MMP in 1917 and '19.

Oscar Charleston is the Negro League MMP. Similar to Hornsby, Charleston is the first position player to win this award since John Henry Lloyd in 1915.
   3. bjhanke Posted: October 18, 2019 at 04:36 PM (#5891724)
The scary thing about Hornsby is that he's just getting started. 1920 here was the first year he was the regular at second base. He hit for a large batting average, but only hit 9 homers. In 1921, he will hit 21. In 1922, he will hit 42. I believe - and I've been checking this out sporadically since 1975 - that Rogers was the first National League player to grasp what Babe Ruth had done, and adopt the uppercut. He may have picked the idea up from George Sisler, who hit 19 homers (second to Ruth) and played in the same ballpark as Hornsby (the Browns owned Sportsman's Park; the Cardinals were actually tenants). He will suffer a serious setback in 1923, when some sort of head injury messed up his inner ear and he lost the ability to go backwards to get a fly ball or popup.

(Take a moment to think about that in terms of the position he was playing. Where does the inability to go back on a fly ball hurt you LESS than at 2B? Catcher, 1B and 3B have to go back on a lot of fly balls, many of them fouls, but still fly balls. An outfielder who can't go back has to play very deep, which will result in his being moved out of the outfield. That leaves SS and 2B. Since most hitters are righties, many more popups are hit over SS than over 2B. Hornsby played 2B for most of his career because his defensive problem was less of a hindrance there than anywhere else.)

After 1923, he will have two more years, just as good if not better than 21 and 22. Then something happens - no one seems to know what - and he had a lousy season (for Rogers Hornsby), although he, in his first full season as manager, will lead the team to its first pennant and World Championship. He will be traded to the Giants in 1927, where he will pick right back up as if 1926 had never happened. He then gets traded to the Boston Braves in 1928, where he is just as good as ever, although the team was lousy. The Braves then trade him to the Cubs, where he has his last monster season. This was the year where Gabby Hartnett missed almost the whole season, and the World Series, or the 1929 Cubs might have been the best team ever. In 1930, Hartnett is back, but Hornsby falls apart and never recovers, or THAT might have been the best team ever.

It's going to be fun to see how all that stacks up against everyone else, including the AL guys, especially Ruth.

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