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Friday, December 10, 2004

Tommy Bond

Marc/sunnday 2 thinks he’s ballot worthy, so a thread makes sense for him.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 10, 2004 at 08:48 PM | 5 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: December 11, 2004 at 08:24 PM (#1013238)
Not in love with this guy, certainly behind Welch for me and I am not a FOMW by any means.

234-163, 2.14 ERA, 111 ERA+, in 3628.7 IP. Of course he threw 400-500 innings a year. I am still not sure whether or not to discount high IP totals for pitchers of his era or to chalk their short careers up to the high IP totals tiring out their arms. The rules were just so screwy, I mean how tired can you be when the batter can ask for a pitch somewhere and you throw underhand at 50 feet?

He had an RSI of 101.65, which somehow gives him the same record. I am wrong here Chris J?

His BP translated stats are not too pretty

93-104 (a .472 WP), 1770.7 IP, 5.4 K/9, and 2.4 BB/9. His K/9, BB/9, and K.BB are both better than Welch's. Though, again this is translated. I think we have plenty of pre 1890 pitchers and Bond doesn't really scream ELECT ME! to me.
   2. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: December 11, 2004 at 08:32 PM (#1013248)
Oh, I should mention I have no real way to judge peak for pitchers yet besides eyeballing WARP and WS. Hope this gets the conversation going!
   3. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: December 12, 2004 at 12:17 AM (#1013643)
He's hard to compare. Pitchers of his era didn't last long, though his direct contemporary Pud Galvin pitched twice as many innings as he did (and that's not including Galvin's IA seasons).
   4. Paul Wendt Posted: November 11, 2009 at 10:12 PM (#3385491)
Yardape, preliminary ballot in "2010 Ballot Discussion"
11. Tommy Bond Another peak case, but this is a tough one. How much was Bond, and how much was his defense? I doubt Bond is getting elected this year, so I'll probably have time to look into it. Nevertheless, I think that Bond was a great pitcher, and the best of his brief era.

Regarding Bond, one question is whether the Boston players were worse fielders and better pitchers (Bond himself) than the official numbers imply. Is there any reason to suppose so?

I thought of this theme again only 24 hours ago while jogging. Bond was the pitcher for Harry Wright's last champion, the 1878 Boston Red Stockings (at BB-Ref). Compared with all other champion teams, Wright relied more heavily on a single Nine, and by batting records it was the weakest Nine (team OPS+ 75). Bond started 59 of 60 games and completed 57. Now-familiar methods credit him with ERA+ merely 114 --and the team merely ERA+ 101, Jack Manning pitched so poorly in his 11 innings!

How do you win the pennant with OPS+ 75, ERA+ 101? How do you score 298 and permit 241, which typically generates 60% wins or W-L 36-24, Pythagoras says? First, you don't permit many unearned runs; in this Boston led the league by a huge margin. The Boston fielders were ultra-superior, or Bond pitched and everyone fielded unusually well with runners on base, or the scorer was relatively generous to batters and fielders with Boston in the field (award lots of hits). Second, you score a lot of runs relative to the component parts that earn batting credit. The Boston runners were superior, or everyone hit unusually well with runners on base, or the scorer was relatively tough on batters and fielders with Boston at bat (award lots of errors).

While jogging 24 hours ago, I though of this in context of the case for Ezra Sutton. (I don't recall how I got into that context.) It was regarding Ezra Sutton (at HOM) that I "discovered" and presented the 1878 Bostons a couple of years ago. Vaguely I recall that there was some response, commenting on that team (by OCF?), but that isn't in the meagre Sutton thread.

Regarding Sutton the question is whether the Boston players were better batters and worse fielders than the official numbers imply. Regarding Bond the question is whether the Boston players were worse fielders and better pitchers (Bond himself) than the official numbers imply.

In my imaginary case yesterday, I explained to the jury my discovery that Harry Wright himself was the official scorer for Boston in 1878. Players were getting to be expensive. (George Wright moved to Providence for the 1879 season and the League initiated its first reserve system that fall, limiting 1879/80 free agency, so to speak.) Batting records swing a lot more weight in player reputations, and therefore in the market for players, than do fielding records. It was true then as it is now, although good fielding was highly valued by those who observed it directly. Harry Wright knew it and he worked to depress the value of Boston players, relative to their peers, by scoring more generously for the Bostons in the field, more generously for the opponents at bat (ie, more hits in their innings; ipso facto, more errors in Boston innings).

It didn't work for Harry Wright. Everyone who mattered in that day had directly observed everyone in the six-team league more than enough times to make his own judgments without relying on the opaque records published by the league. Providence signed George Wright, won the next championship, and replaced Boston as the beast of the east. Harry Wright never won another one.

It did make a big difference for us, who have not much but the opaque records.

That was my imaginary case. It works against pitcher Tommy Bond just as it works for the fielding, against the batting reputations of everyone on the team. It works if someone else officially scored games for Boston, with the design here attributed to Harry Wright. Probably that would be someone hired by Wright or owner Arthur Soden. be someone hired by owner Arthur Soden.
   5. OCF Posted: November 11, 2009 at 10:25 PM (#3385513)
Paul, this thread is what you're looking for. My post - the one that set you off on this train of thought - was #118 in that thread.

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