Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Wednesday, December 08, 2021

Baseball Hall of Fame tracker 2022

DL from MN Posted: December 08, 2021 at 11:35 AM | 1188 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hall of fame

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 5 of 12 pages ‹ First  < 3 4 5 6 7 >  Last ›
   401. SoSH U at work Posted: December 21, 2021 at 07:06 PM (#6058291)
Flip
   402. JJ1986 Posted: December 21, 2021 at 07:35 PM (#6058293)
It's just my philosophy, but I would so much rather give a vote to a guy who had a dominant 3-4 seasons than a guy who was just good and played for a long time. Torii Hunter never had 5.5 WAR in a season (though his defensive numbers in 2002 are a little weird considering the surrounding years). Pierzynski has one season above 3.3 (and he's worse on Fangraphs, though I don't know when they started counting framing). I know he's not eligible, but I'd take Brandon Webb over both of them easily.
   403. John DiFool2 Posted: December 21, 2021 at 08:13 PM (#6058298)
Belanger was so good that he played with no jock or cup.
   404. LargeBill Posted: December 21, 2021 at 08:40 PM (#6058300)
402. JJ1986 Posted: December 21, 2021 at 07:35 PM (#6058293)
It's just my philosophy, but I would so much rather give a vote to a guy who had a dominant 3-4 seasons than a guy who was just good and played for a long time. Torii Hunter never had 5.5 WAR in a season (though his defensive numbers in 2002 are a little weird considering the surrounding years). Pierzynski has one season above 3.3 (and he's worse on Fangraphs, though I don't know when they started counting framing). I know he's not eligible, but I'd take Brandon Webb over both of them easily.


I don't see it as a simple high-peak or accumulator choice. If a player had a very high peak but a relatively short career (say Trout hit by bus tomorrow), I'm fine with his election despite relatively low counting stats. However, if a player is good to very good and able to earn/hold a roster spot long to accumulate certain milestones that can merit consideration as well. There is room enough in Cooperstown for the Sandy Koufax, Dizzy Dean and Addie Joss types, AND the Early Wynn and Gaylord Perry types. Peak and accumulator examples can be found for batters as well. I just like pitching examples a little more because of greater possibility of injury which makes endurance all the more notable. Don Sutton may never have been the best pitcher in baseball, but he answered the bell every time it rang. He never finished higher than 4th in strikeout BUT he is 7th all time. Koufax lead the league in Ks four times and is 51st all time in Ks. Though they took wildly different paths, both are deservedly in the HOF.

The real arguments are about the players who have some peak but not quite impressive enough to make a pure peak case and/or accumulate some #s without clearing the round number milestones.
   405. Howie Menckel Posted: December 21, 2021 at 08:45 PM (#6058301)
Don Sutton may never have been the best pitcher in baseball, but he answered the bell every time it rang. He never finished higher than 4th in strikeout BUT he is 7th all time. Koufax lead the league in Ks four times and is 51st all time in Ks. Though they took wildly different paths, both are deservedly in the HOF.

and they combined for 76 starts as the Dodgers won the 1966 NL pennant - Sutton's rookie year, Koufax's swan song.

1966 Dodgers starts:
Koufax 41
Drysdale 40
Osteen 38
Sutton 35
Moeller 8

and that's it
only 9 Dodgers pitchers threw 5+ IP that season (Regan, Miller, Perranoski in relief plus 22 innings from an ailing-elbowed Jim Brewer).
   406. alilisd Posted: December 21, 2021 at 09:25 PM (#6058310)
That's not quite accurate. Vizquel hit like a typical shortstop. Belanger hit like a good-hitting pitcher.


That's not quite accurate. Typical shortstops during Vizquel's career hit for about a 95 OPS+ to his 84.
   407. SoSH U at work Posted: December 21, 2021 at 09:57 PM (#6058313)
In his prime, that’s about where he was .
   408. GregD Posted: December 21, 2021 at 10:05 PM (#6058314)
Think he was about a 92 OPS+ in the portion of his career that is roughly equal to Belanger's PAs==1996 to 2006, 6900 PAs. The rest of his career, the lead up and wind down, he hit like Belanger roughly.
   409. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 21, 2021 at 10:24 PM (#6058319)
Shaun Powell is Rolen's fifth add; Bonds/Clemens/Ortiz/ARod/Rolen/Schilling. Reasonable smallish-Hall ballot if you heavily credit Ortiz for the postseason.
   410. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 21, 2021 at 11:38 PM (#6058324)
I'm as big as Ortiz fan as one can possibly be and think he should be enshrined, but I don't see how you value him over Sheffield. Basically the same OPS+, slightly different shape, but Sheff's oWAR is nearly 24 points higher I assume due to the better OBP; that's a big difference. Gary is getting pinged big time on dWAR. Sure, he was a butcher out there, but manning a position surely has more value then just not playing the field at all. There is no LF worse then no fielder at all. Yes, it's a simplistic understanding of the situation, but that's how I consider it.
   411. Jose is Absurdly Correct but not Helpful Posted: December 21, 2021 at 11:43 PM (#6058325)
It's just my philosophy, but I would so much rather give a vote to a guy who had a dominant 3-4 seasons than a guy who was just good and played for a long time.


I’m somewhat similar. I take a three pronged approach; was his peak awesome, did he have a long bit of sustained very goodness, and did he feel like a Hall of Famer to me. Basically when I think about these guys if they meet two of the three they get my hypothetical vote.
   412. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: December 22, 2021 at 01:28 AM (#6058327)
I'll be the contarian here, but Re: A dominant 3-4 seasons versus a guy who was just good and played for a long time.

There is a heck of a lot of value to a team in a guy that's "just good and played for a long time". That's a player you can build a team around. That's a player you can sign a long term contract to and won't flush your money down the toilet. That's a player that people will pay to go see, will take their kids to the game and say "That's so-and-so, you can always count on him to have a good year, he's always one of the top hitters/pitchers on the team".

Baseball is not a game like basketball where one or two players can carry a team to a championship (well, recently it takes 3), nor even like football where a hot quarterback can sometimes lead a band of nobodies to a SuperBowl. A baseball team usually needs to be built over time, and a shooting-star type player with just 3-4 dominant seasons can easily end up stuck in a bad situation like Mike Trout, though noting that Mike Trout has had 10 great seasons wasted by the Angels.

Sandy Koufax, the paragon of the shooting star, had 4 great seasons, and 2 more all-star quality seasons, with the advantage that these seasons were all in a row, and the dominant seasons were at the end, and the Dodgers got two WS wins out of him. Imagine the other trajectory, where the most dominant seasons are at the beginning of the run (Mark Fidyrich, perhaps, if he hadn't gotten hurt, Fernando), and he kinda tailed off. The front office might be surprised the first year, starting to believe the second year, then "hey maybe we should go all-in and try to win the WS right now" the third year, and by the time they have all the pieces in place he's started to decline.

Maybe I'm talking here as someone who grew up with the 1970's Dodgers with Cey, Lopes, Garvey, Russell, and Don Sutton and Tommy John on the mound. A little later in time and down the freeway you had the Angels with Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson (all-time greats, of course, but all-time greats who were great for a long time), Bobby Grich, and lesser lights like Brian Downing, Don Baylor, Doug Decinces. So from my standpoint one of the credentials of a Hall of Famer is longevity.
   413. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 22, 2021 at 07:25 AM (#6058333)
I'm as big as Ortiz fan as one can possibly be and think he should be enshrined, but I don't see how you value him over Sheffield. Basically the same OPS+, slightly different shape, but Sheff's oWAR is nearly 24 points higher I assume due to the better OBP; that's a big difference. Gary is getting pinged big time on dWAR. Sure, he was a butcher out there, but manning a position surely has more value then just not playing the field at all. There is no LF worse then no fielder at all. Yes, it's a simplistic understanding of the situation, but that's how I consider it.

Sheffield's oWAR is so much higher largely because oWAR still includes a position adjustment. (Sheffield is still a better hitter, but not 24 wins better.)
   414. Adam Starblind Posted: December 22, 2021 at 08:59 AM (#6058335)
I'm as big as Ortiz fan as one can possibly be and think he should be enshrined, but I don't see how you value him over Sheffield. Basically the same OPS+, slightly different shape, but Sheff's oWAR is nearly 24 points higher I assume due to the better OBP; that's a big difference. Gary is getting pinged big time on dWAR. Sure, he was a butcher out there, but manning a position surely has more value then just not playing the field at all. There is no LF worse then no fielder at all. Yes, it's a simplistic understanding of the situation, but that's how I consider it.


Presumably because it's not the Hall of WAR. I know I'm a broken record here.
   415. DL from MN Posted: December 22, 2021 at 09:56 AM (#6058343)
I'm as big as Ortiz fan as one can possibly be and think he should be enshrined, but I don't see how you value him over Sheffield.


David Ortiz smiles a lot but Gary Sheffield makes frowny faces.
   416. JJ1986 Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:33 AM (#6058348)
I have no problem with writers giving Ortiz postseason credit, but if you're going to do that, you have to give Berkman and Schilling and Hershisher and others postseason credit as well. And maybe you have to give Wagner postseason demerits.
   417. cookiedabookie Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:38 AM (#6058350)
Sheffield's oWAR is so much higher largely because oWAR still includes a position adjustment. (Sheffield is still a better hitter, but not 24 wins better.)

Sheffield has a 521 to 455 lead in batting runs. That's not 24 wins, but it's still about seven wins better with the bat.
   418. John DiFool2 Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:45 AM (#6058351)
Papi now 40 for 40.
   419. The Duke Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:53 AM (#6058353)
Rolens lost vote from Saxon hurts a lot. Saxon only had 8 so it appears Rolen has lost his vote for good. Basically all his gains are simply making up his lost vote
   420. John DiFool2 Posted: December 22, 2021 at 11:08 AM (#6058358)
People do seem to have forgotten Papi's notorious temper tho.

Does he deserve any credit for the way Tom Kelly mismanaged him in Minnesota? For his 1999 season in AAA (1.002 OPS), after .817 in Minnesota the previous year? Over Minkywits and his .663 OPS? [Hilarious that he was sent down in turn, .929 in AAA in 2000] DH's those two years were a soon-to-retire Paul Molitor and his .718 OPS, and the mighty Marty Cordova (.828).
   421. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 11:53 AM (#6058364)
Is it actually "over"? He voted for 10, and, once again, there is no rule about ranking them. If he feels this guy deserves a hof vote, and he uses all ten spots, it's really hard to pass blame on it, if the ballot is generally solid and consistent with his past voting


Yes, I'd say it actually is. But the real issue to me is the vote seems disrespectful to the process and to the players. The process is supposed to be about bestowing the game's highest individual honor on the very best players, but he votes for a player he says he NEVER thought of as a HOF, and he NEVER heard anyone call him a HOF player. He votes for the PED guys some are disqualifying using the character clause, but then says he's going to give someone extra credit for character and vote for them even though they're "barely borderline at best." That is NOT what the clause is intended for! And then he throws a token vote to Tex, who he acknowledges has no chance. This is disrespectful to the process, IMO. He lists four players, plus Vizquel, who all "deserve strong consideration," but doesn't vote for any of them instead giving three votes to players he acknowledges are NOT deserving. The time for token votes and giving a nod to players you really like but who are not HOF caliber passed about a decade ago. Since 2012 he ballot has been in a state where legitimate 10 person ballots exist every year, but for the most extreme anti-PED and small hall voters, which Mr. Sullivan clearly is not. It's also disrespectful to the players who are deserving of votes and of enshrinement. Why leave Helton, Jones and Kent, if you think he deserves it, without a vote while giving an available slot to someone who you thought was a quality character, a clean player, or a stand up guy? I think this is a very wrong ballot for both of those reasons, and the semantic issue of whether it's "over" someone else or not is utterly beside the point.
   422. dark Posted: December 22, 2021 at 12:09 PM (#6058367)
He voted for the five players with a chance in 2021, the one of his borderline crew who polled best in 2021 and has limited time left, and the holdover nearest to 5%. Nobody with a chance to be elected or to drop off the ballot was omitted from his “borderline” group, and he has only the one chance to cast a vote for Teixeira and AJP. TR has been revealing here for more than a decade, and this is not the first time he’s done something similar, voting for Michael Young in 2019 and Juan Gone in 2011/2012. He’ll add the people in the borderline group soon. The one guy he dropped that isn’t free falling has five more years of eligibility left and would need to absolutely shatter for single year gain record to get in this year (which he won’t do).
   423. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 12:10 PM (#6058369)
There is room enough in Cooperstown for the Sandy Koufax, Dizzy Dean and Addie Joss types, AND the Early Wynn and Gaylord Perry types.


Sure there is, but Perry is not an accumulator type. From 1966 to 1976 he averaged over 6 WAR with only one season below 5. Three or four of those seasons were what B-R considers MVP (or CY in this case) type seasons of 8 or more. Yes, he pitched a long time, but he absolutely has a HOF peak
   424. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 12:16 PM (#6058371)
Sheffield's oWAR is so much higher largely because oWAR still includes a position adjustment. (Sheffield is still a better hitter, but not 24 wins better.)


He picks up about 10 of those by being a better hitter though, 561 rBat to 455 for Ortiz. That's not a small difference, I'd say.
   425. DL from MN Posted: December 22, 2021 at 12:26 PM (#6058373)
He picks up about 10 of those by being a better hitter though, 561 rBat to 455 for Ortiz. That's not a small difference, I'd say.


Manny's at 651 rBat
   426. LargeBill Posted: December 22, 2021 at 01:55 PM (#6058383)
423. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 12:10 PM (#6058369)

There is room enough in Cooperstown for the Sandy Koufax, Dizzy Dean and Addie Joss types, AND the Early Wynn and Gaylord Perry types.



Sure there is, but Perry is not an accumulator type. From 1966 to 1976 he averaged over 6 WAR with only one season below 5. Three or four of those seasons were what B-R considers MVP (or CY in this case) type seasons of 8 or more. Yes, he pitched a long time, but he absolutely has a HOF peak


He hung around for five seasons after turning 40. The 47 games won in those five seasons lifted him from 267 wins to 314. The electorate back then never heard of the advanced stats like WAR. Even with 314 wins, it took him three ballots to get in, so quite likely would have taken much longer at 267.
   427. John Northey Posted: December 22, 2021 at 01:58 PM (#6058384)
Is Tim Lincecum the reverse Koufax? Started hot, then did poorly in a short career. His 2nd through 5th seasons he was 2 Cy Youngs and Cy votes the other 2 years. ERA+'s of 168-171-114-127 (143 net), a 112 as a rookie, but the rest of his career (5 more seasons) he never cracked 95. Helped his team win 2 World Series titles and was there for a 3rd (just pitched 1 game in the 2010 playoffs, going 1 2/3 IP getting all 5 batters out). Yet he has zero chance of a second ballot for the Hall vs Koufax being a first ballot lock.

Of course, Koufax's peak was higher (4 years 3 Cy's ERA's of 159-190) and his 'bad' years were better. If Lincecum had 2 more Cy's instead of 'just' 2 more solid years there (ie: 150+ ERA+'s instead of 114/127) then this would be a lot more interesting comparison. Still, I suspect Koufax has the 'what if' question hanging while Lincecum doesn't which helps a lot in narrative.
   428. John DiFool2 Posted: December 22, 2021 at 02:27 PM (#6058390)
He's only 37, been gone for 5 years.
   429. LargeBill Posted: December 22, 2021 at 02:44 PM (#6058392)
427. John Northey Posted: December 22, 2021 at 01:58 PM (#6058384)
Is Tim Lincecum the reverse Koufax? Started hot, then did poorly in a short career. His 2nd through 5th seasons he was 2 Cy Youngs and Cy votes the other 2 years. ERA+'s of 168-171-114-127 (143 net), a 112 as a rookie, but the rest of his career (5 more seasons) he never cracked 95. Helped his team win 2 World Series titles and was there for a 3rd (just pitched 1 game in the 2010 playoffs, going 1 2/3 IP getting all 5 batters out). Yet he has zero chance of a second ballot for the Hall vs Koufax being a first ballot lock.

Of course, Koufax's peak was higher (4 years 3 Cy's ERA's of 159-190) and his 'bad' years were better. If Lincecum had 2 more Cy's instead of 'just' 2 more solid years there (ie: 150+ ERA+'s instead of 114/127) then this would be a lot more interesting comparison. Still, I suspect Koufax has the 'what if' question hanging while Lincecum doesn't which helps a lot in narrative.


I'm not arguing that Lincecum had enough peak to overcome his short career, but it is interesting to compare his score on Black & Gray Ink to recent HOF selections:
Lincecum 10 years 21 Black 84 Gray
Morris 18 years 20 Black 193 Gray
Kaat 25 years 16 Black 125 Gray
Blyleven 22 years 16 Black 237 Gray
Lee Smith 18 years 12 Black 48 Gray

Shows Lincecum dominated for a short period. I personally prefer Gray Ink as Black doesn't account for close at all. Black Ink makes Blyleven seem pretty average, but Gray shows he was always among the league leaders even if not #1.
   430. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 03:00 PM (#6058393)
He hung around for five seasons after turning 40. The 47 games won i-n those five seasons lifted him from 267 wins to 314. The electorate back then never heard of the advanced stats like WAR. Even with 314 wins, it took him three ballots to get in, so quite likely would have taken much longer at 267.


I already acknowledged he pitched a long time, that does not automatically make someone an "accumulator." Most HOF pitchers also pitched a long time. How long someone takes to get elected, how many ballots, also has nothing to do with whether they are an accumulator. Low to no peak and long career, that is an accumulator. The aforementioned Sutton is a great example, John, Kaat, those sorts of pitchers. You don't like WAR for Perry? How about led the league in W's 1970, second in CY. Led the league in W's in 1972, wins the CY. Leads the league in W's and wins another CY in 1978. During that 1966-76 peak he was in the top 10 in W's 8 times, K's 9 times (2nd, two 3rd, two 4th and a 5th place), CG's every year and 7 times 3rd or better, shutouts 7 times with a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, ERA 7 times with two 2nd and a 5th place.

There is a clear, and extended peak there whether you care to look at more advanced metrics, or more traditional. Yes, he accumulated high counting stats due to sticking around a long time, but that is not mutually exclusive to having a peak, and does not automatically make him an accumulator.
   431. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 03:01 PM (#6058394)
Is Tim Lincecum the reverse Koufax?


Yes
   432. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 03:05 PM (#6058395)
407. SoSH U at work Posted: December 21, 2021 at 09:57 PM (#6058313) In his prime, that’s about where he was .


Oh, we're talking prime!
   433. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: December 22, 2021 at 03:27 PM (#6058397)
the mighty Marty Cordova (.828)


Hey now!
   434. villageidiom Posted: December 22, 2021 at 03:29 PM (#6058398)
Sure, he was a butcher out there, but manning a position surely has more value then just not playing the field at all.
A player not playing the field at all is not forcing his team to leave a position vacant. A player playing horribly in the field is preventing his team from playing someone there who could do better, just as much as a great hitter is preventing his team from batting someone who could do worse.

Mind you, these are team choices that are influenced by the player's health & ability as well as the health & ability of the other players on the roster. Most of Ortiz's career was spent on a team that had a surplus of 1B/DH talent, and for most of that the team opted to play someone at 1B who was a great hitter and a top defender; but when they were constrained (such as interleague games at NL parks) they nearly always put Ortiz at 1B. Like, whether Ortiz was bad at 1B or pretty good at 1B, that's what a team with that roster would probably do.

Sheffield spent most of his career on teams that had ​no DH or on a team with a surplus of bad defenders - I hesitate to say 1B/DH talent because much of it wasn't even good for 1B - and was the best of a host of bad options. Arguably in Bernie Williams' final years the Yankees' entire outfield was a bunch of 1B/DH types forced to play the field. That doesn't on its own make any of them more valuable than not playing the field. They were less valuable defensively than generic replacements, but given the roster construction they were more valuable defensively than the immediately available replacements. Like, they weren't going to put Giambi in RF.

But all of that is very irrelevant. The comparison, once again, is not Ortiz vs. Sheffield. It's Ortiz's performance in the opportunities he was given, and the nature of those opportunities, vs. other players with similar opportunities; and separately it's Sheffield's performance in the opportunities he was given, and the nature of those opportunities, vs. other players with similar opportunities. To the extent anyone wants to compare the two the only relevant comparison is in strategic voting - i.e. you can only vote 10 and want to hold someone aside this year who you can still vote for next year, or something like that. Otherwise, the question on Sheffield is this: As a player who mostly played RF for many years, was he among the best at that role? (Also, does that role provide enough opportunity for someone to be valuable to his team? However, for most roles filled by a player on a HOF ballot the answer to this is so obvious that it goes unasked.) And the question on Ortiz is this: As a player who mostly played DH for many years, was he among the best at that role? (Also, does that role provide enough opportunity for someone to be valuable to his team? Until recently this was generally unasked about DH, but it's relevant.)

I think you can argue "yes" for all of those questions, but for Sheffield I think it's a harder argument to make on the basis of all RF (or if you want to be generous, all OF) who came before him. Ortiz is among the all-time best at the DH role in the almost 50-year history of the DH.
   435. NaOH Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:08 PM (#6058406)
If Sheffield's OF defense is really that bad like the numbers indicate, isn't Andruw's defense then really that good?
   436. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:17 PM (#6058407)
Ortiz is among the all-time best at the DH role in the almost 50-year history of the DH.


Agree with your points overall, but you still have to compare Ortiz to other hitters at this point because there have been so few players who fill the DH role as their primary career function. Molitor played a lot of games as a DH, sure, and he wouldn't have made the HOF had he not, but he's a hybrid like Eck. Frank Thomas won his MVP's as a 1B. Edgar is in as a DH, but they were still trying to keep him at 3B when he was 31 and in his 8th season. Ortiz was a 1B for only his first 2 seasons, which were only 101 games altogether. So, yeah, he absolutely is among the best all time in the role, but there just aren't many guys who have filled the role on a full time basis for a significant length of time. I think the qualifier is a DH has to hit as well as a HOF 1B, rather than a HOF DH, for a long time to be considered, and he absolutely did that.
   437. Walt Davis Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:23 PM (#6058408)
1. Why in the world would we only compare players to others in the same role? What do you do with the large number of players that had multiple roles?

2. Any player can play DH. The DH "role" is one thing -- to hit. Therefore they are compared to every other "hitter." Then they are "reduced" relative to other hitters due to their non-existent defensive value.

3. Somebody with stathead can run the numbers but the number of players with x,000 PA at DH vs the number with x,000 PA in a corner OF spot over the last 50 years is going to be rather small. So saying that Ortiz is the Xth best DH is going to be the equivalent of saying Sheffield was among the top 5X corner OFs. (5 is a guesstimate obviously) Once you calculate what 5X is, I suspect you'll have a not so impressive statement.

EDIT: And of course focusing on "role" gives us Billy Wagner in the HoF
   438. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:42 PM (#6058410)
He picks up about 10 of those by being a better hitter though, 561 rBat to 455 for Ortiz. That's not a small difference, I'd say.

No argument here; I went on to say that Sheffield was a better hitter. oWAR just isn't the right tool to look at pure hitting, which I pointed out mostly because that discussion has already happened upthread.
   439. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:49 PM (#6058411)
No argument here; I went on to say that Sheffield was a better hitter.


That was all I was suggesting when I posted the discussion in the first place. Why Ortiz but not Shef, as Shef was clearly the better hitter anyway and you can't ding a guy so much for poor defence when the other guy didn't even play any defence.

I did not realise that oWAR has a positional component built into it, I thought that's what dWAR was for. That's just my ignorance playing out there and I thank Eric J. for clarifying it.

This is why these threads are really fun, I learn new stuff every time.
   440. alilisd Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:55 PM (#6058412)
No argument here; I went on to say that Sheffield was a better hitter. oWAR just isn't the right tool to look at pure hitting, which I pointed out mostly because that discussion has already happened upthread.


Ah, gotcha. Cheers!
   441. LargeBill Posted: December 22, 2021 at 06:11 PM (#6058414)
435. NaOH Posted: December 22, 2021 at 05:08 PM (#6058406)
If Sheffield's OF defense is really that bad like the numbers indicate, isn't Andruw's defense then really that good?


No and no. Sheffield was not good on defense and Jones was very good on defense. I don't trust any stats that purport to quantify the exact value of the difference between the two. Both are Hall of Famers in my book. Sheffield will go in primarily on his offense. Jones will go in based on a good bat AND a great glove.
   442. Howie Menckel Posted: December 22, 2021 at 06:46 PM (#6058416)
Post 434 feels like - now, maybe it is, maybe it isn't, but... - a "reverse engineered" argument.

that is, of the "I know I want Ortiz in the Hall because I love Ortiz, so I'll try to make my best possible argument in support."

and fwiw, based on the handful of 2022 HOM ballots so far, I'm a bigger "friend" to Ortiz than all but I think one voter. so I don't think I'm being too dismissive of his career.

(fwiw, Sheffield already is in the HOM as the 4th of 4 2015 electees behind Griffey Jr., Mussina, and Smoltz and ahead of Edmonds, Sosa, Kent, and Lofton.)
   443. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 22, 2021 at 06:58 PM (#6058417)
you can't ding a guy so much for poor defence when the other guy didn't even play any defence.


Why can't you? It's indisputable that Sheffield cost his teams runs while playing defense. Regardless of position on the field he was a negative. Obviously he completely overcomes this with his amazing hitting, but it's +10 offense -4 fielding =6. Ortiz primarily was a net zero on defense, playing the position given to him on the line up card - DH. He's more of a +7 offense -1 fielding =6.

And most of you need to say it with me now, "DH IS A POSITION". Someone on the team has to play it (even if it's the pitcher). Quite frankly, the Sox should be given a lot of credit for putting an excellent hitter there, it was a big reason why they won three world series during Ortiz's career and another with JD Martinez. I really do not understand why teams don't go more aggressively for a big bat to put at DH - if you want to give a guy a day off, just give him the day off, don't put him at DH and think that's helping.

Oh, wait, I remember why teams don't always do that - it's because the DH position is stigmatized and so many players want to think they are better than that. Sheffield & Adam Dunn are two of the biggest and most glaring examples - they sucked in the field, but were vocal about not wanting to move to DH. Clearly they would have been more valuable to their teams in that role, I don't see how anyone can dispute that. The previously mentioned Martinez wants to think he can play in the field and gets time in the OF tossed to him to appease his ego - it's the only reason I can figure why a manager would put him there. He certainly is worse than any other defensive option.

To me, Ortiz maximized his career by accepting and embracing a 'lesser' role, similar to Edgar, why not credit him for that, instead of using it as a negative?
   444. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 22, 2021 at 07:12 PM (#6058419)
To me, Ortiz maximized his career by accepting and embracing a 'lesser' role, similar to Edgar, why not credit him for that, instead of using it as a negative?


I'm not suggesting it's a negative, I'm suggesting that having a guy who is great hitter and plays the field provides more value; even if he's terrible in field. With a pure DH, you need to fill the roster with another body who may or may not be a good fielder, but it's still another roster spot. Being able to hit well AND play the field, IMHO has inherent value as you don't need to think about another roster spot to put on the diamond. You can always get another relief pitcher or something which may give you more value then what you are losing due to the bad fielding provided by your great hitter.

Of course I'm thinking from the "building a team" side of it and not necessarily a pure HOF, specific to the player, argument(so yeah I've veered off on a tangent)

I think they both belong, I'm just curious as to how you can pick Ortiz, not Sheffield, and justify it. Or at least what your(not you specifically) logic is.
   445. John DiFool2 Posted: December 22, 2021 at 07:20 PM (#6058421)
Coke to 443; just wanted to add, since this is something that we all should know by now, DH'ing 101:

Any player can play DH.


But not many can hit as well as they can when at their primary positions. Yes, usual counterargument is that they were either injured, or old, or had a chip on their shoulder Dunn-style when they manned it.* Even if that is true, it still gives an edge to the teams (and players) willing to man it and continue to whack the pellet into the nether regions with regularity (as in especially if that is true). I'd go so far and say that this is one of those possible Moneyball-style exploitable gap thangs (whatever they call it the correct term escapes me), given how so many teams have a DH in there each day who can't hit.

*Understand, I'd fully welcome a study controlling for those factors (+ other relevant ones)-I haven't seen such a study yet.
   446. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 22, 2021 at 07:29 PM (#6058422)
You can always get another relief pitcher or something which may give you more value then what you are losing due to the bad fielding provided by your great hitter.


I'm on the opposite side of this - a decent OF + a great DH is more valuable to me than another hit or miss reliever with a compromised defensive OF.
   447. Adam Starblind Posted: December 22, 2021 at 08:38 PM (#6058427)
. I'm not suggesting it's a negative, I'm suggesting that having a guy who is great hitter and plays the field provides more value; even if he's terrible in field. With a pure DH, you need to fill the roster with another body who may or may not be a good fielder, but it's still another roster spot.


With Sheffield on your team, you also needed another person to fill a roster spot. WTf?
   448. Adam Starblind Posted: December 22, 2021 at 08:41 PM (#6058428)
.
I think they both belong, I'm just curious as to how you can pick Ortiz, not Sheffield, and justify it.


No you’re not. Everyone knows it’s narrative and personality. You just think that’s dumb, which is your right as an American, though it’s not the attitude of most baseball fans.
   449. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 22, 2021 at 08:53 PM (#6058429)
With Sheffield on your team, you also needed another person to fill a roster spot. WTf?


I'm suggesting you have more flexibility with respect to the roster spot. You can fill it with either a position player or another pitcher. If you have a full time DH, then you need someone to fill in a position on the field.

No you’re not. Everyone knows it’s narrative and personality. You just think that’s dumb, which is your right as an American, though it’s not the attitude of most baseball fans.


I'm not sure if you are trolling or have just recently think you discovered a way to read my mind, but yes, I am genuinely curious to hear from someone a reasonable argument for Ortiz over Sheffield. You can site post season stats, WC champs, etc and those are all good arguments which make some sense, but a pure stats based argument I think would be hard to defend.
   450. Adam Starblind Posted: December 22, 2021 at 09:06 PM (#6058430)
. I'm suggesting you have more flexibility with respect to the roster spot. You can fill it with either a position player or another pitcher. If you have a full time DH, then you need someone to fill in a position on the field.


Is it true that teams with full time DH’s actually carry an extra reliever? and if so what’s the typical WAR of this reliever who wouldn’t otherwise make a major league roster?

As for needing somebody to fill a position on the field, Im trying to make sense of that. Sheffield was on the field playing it badly, but you had to have him out there because of his bat. What was the extra player doing and what was his value?
   451. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 22, 2021 at 09:16 PM (#6058431)
As for needing somebody to fill a position on the field, Im trying to make sense of that. Sheffield was on the field playing it badly, but you had to have him out there because of his bat. What was the extra player doing and what was his value?


That's a great question and I don't think you can measure that as you really have no way of knowing specifically which player is linked to the DH/great hitting, bad fielding player. It's a fun discussion though as roster construction, I think, needs to be in constant flux to some degree. The argument could be made that both the Red Sox and Sheffield's teams made the correct decisions and maximised the value of their rosters at the time; or not?

Of course I think both players are HOF worthy just from what they did at the dish, it's just fun to hear other's positions on it.
   452. BDC Posted: December 22, 2021 at 09:23 PM (#6058433)
What if you disregarded RPos and just summed RBat and RField? Then Sheffield is at 366 and Ortiz at 439. Factor in baserunning and it's Sheffield 365, Ortiz 400.

I'm not saying one should do that. But there is an argument that in terms of how much a guy helped his team win in a given year, RPos is immaterial, seeing that every team has to man every position. Sheffield was giving away runs in the field that Ortiz was unable to give away from the bench.

Sheffield was still a better athlete and you'd probably trade Ortiz for Sheffield even up at a given age; Sheffield would have been the superior career DH. But in terms of what happened in the boxscore, that's one route to thinking Ortiz superior.

I don't think anybody is actually thinking that way, but I'm trying to get there at a stretch :)

NB you would theoretically trade Ortiz for Sheffield because it should be theoretically easier to find a hitter with no glove at all to replace Ortiz; though as several have noted, teams don't seem to be able to do that with any regularity.
   453. baxter Posted: December 22, 2021 at 09:39 PM (#6058435)
430; yes on Perry; he was the first pitcher to win Cy in each league.

Would it have taken him longer if he hadn't reached 300 wins? How much longer than say, Jenkins or Marichal
   454. LargeBill Posted: December 22, 2021 at 09:44 PM (#6058436)
448. Adam Starblind Posted: December 22, 2021 at 08:41 PM (#6058428)

.
I think they both belong, I'm just curious as to how you can pick Ortiz, not Sheffield, and justify it.



No you’re not. Everyone knows it’s narrative and personality. You just think that’s dumb, which is your right as an American, though it’s not the attitude of most baseball fans


There are actually several ways to justify voting Ortiz and not Sheffield. Milwaukee voters may remember Sheffield's tenure there less than fondly. Older voters may remember how the Red Sox were considered cursed and doomed to never win another championship after trading that Ruth kid, and give extra credit to the players that helped overcome that. I don't care about PEDs, but voters who do might reach the conclusion that they believe one guy was more likely to have used than the other. Other than Bonds and Clemens, none of these guys are inner circle type HOF candidates, so voters parse out what things they give a crap about in deciding between fairly even (or not even at all) candidates.
   455. taxandbeerguy Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:16 PM (#6058440)
A couple more thoughts on Perry. He came onto the ballot in 1989. So while he was phenomenal, there was also Johnny Bench and Carl Yastrzemski making debut appearances. The following year, Joe Morgan and Jim Palmer (when 20 win seasons were a huge focus). He was elected in 1991 with Fergie Jenkins and Rod Carew. Seaver and Carlton and Reggie and Niekro would be on ballot within 3 years as well. That's a pretty deep peer group (not entirely unlike most of the 2013-18 classes). He wasn't hanging around at replacement value those 5 years, he was a league average number 4 starter with an all-star appearance in there. So the wins helped, but he was still good enough to be valuable. If he retires after 1978 or 1979, Perry doesn't have the 300 win hook, but he has Cy Youngs in both leagues and a vastly inferior peer class. Brock's got notoriety, but Perry's better than them all (including McCovey who I wouldn't be surprised if he received more votes than Perry. But then I also don;t understand some of the voters of the era, given Frank Robinson, Bob Gibson and Al Kaline didn't get 90% of the vote and Hank Aaron wasn't unanimous.
   456. Howie Menckel Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:28 PM (#6058442)
if only we had 1989 Hall of Merit results

Bench got most of the first-place votes, Yaz got most of the second-place votes, and Perry got most of the third-place votes.

fellow newcomer Jenkins got the plurality of the 4th-place (not-elected) votes, and the 4 newbies mopped the floor against the holdovers.

in fact, Boyer was the only holdover to gain a (top-15) slot on even half of the ballots.
   457. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: December 22, 2021 at 10:57 PM (#6058443)
But not many can hit as well as they can when at their primary positions


This is really very much a personal thing, a function of how one's mind works. Some players with fielding woes, it affects their hitting, and vice-versa, some players it doesn't affect them at all. Paul Molitor, Edgar Martinez, Don Baylor - it didn't make a whit of a difference to them whether they were playing in the field or not. Some players it didn't affect their hitting, but it affected their love of the game - Greg Luzinski. Some players (Adam Dunn), even though they were poor fielders, just couldn't stand being a DH for whatever reason, and for some players (Khris Davis, Ortiz perhaps, Frank Thomas) not having to worry about their obvious fielding limitations let them focus on what they really did well. Dave Kingman probably would have fit in this category if he had been put in the DH spot earlier in this career. I often remember Pedro Guerrero's line about "please don't hit it to me, and don't hit it to Sax" - Guerrero was one of those guys who probably would have had a much better career if they had just stuck him at DH earlier and simply let him hit.

How this dynamic affects a players value and HOF candidacy is another matter, I tend to favor narrative so I would vote for Ortiz.

As far as Sheffield is concerned, he was a Dodger in the terrible Fox years and played well, but there was a stink about the team then. He started his career off with the Brewers, noting that he'd deliberately committed errors to force a trade, got traded to the Padres, then got solid off in the Padres fire sale of 1993, then got sold off in the Marlins fire sale of 1998, then got traded from the Dodgers to the Braves in 2002 after again voicing his displeasure with management.

Sheffield seems a less-extreme version of Dick Allen, a very talented player who didn't always get along with management (sometimes with legitmate reasons), and therefore moved around a lot. I'd vote for him, too.
   458. The Duke Posted: December 22, 2021 at 11:07 PM (#6058444)
Where are all the ballots ???
   459. villageidiom Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:11 AM (#6058452)
Post 434 feels like - now, maybe it is, maybe it isn't, but... - a "reverse engineered" argument.

that is, of the "I know I want Ortiz in the Hall because I love Ortiz, so I'll try to make my best possible argument in support."

I've been saying since long before Ortiz had a HOF case that the two questions to ask about HOF candidates are "Is the opportunity the player had substantial enough to warrant consideration for the HoF?" and "Did the player actually do enough with that opportunity to be worthy of HoF enshrinement?" If you just let WAR positional adjustments tell you about the opportunities that's how you perpetuate a dearth of corner infielders in the HoF - and that's a problem IMO. It also basically forces a DH to hit far better than any non-DH who made the HOF on a case that largely ignored their defense, in order to have any shot at enshrinement. That's the more relevant thing when we're talking about Ortiz, but it's the same concept.

I've also pointed out several times before - not in this context - that the positional adjustment doesn't reflect a skill differential, but rather an opportunity differential. It was developed by looking at players who switched positions - and thus are largely an apples-to-apples set of skills. As I've said before, the difference in positional adjustment between SS and 1B suggests SS are far more capable of playing 1B than any empirical evidence would suggest. Someone selected for SS has greater range, but at 1B their range is nearly useless. It's not that they lose that skill if they switch! It's that the different position doesn't give them the opportunity to convert that skill to value. That's all fine, but we're trying to evaluate what the player did with the opportunity they had, not theoretically how much more or less opportunity they would have had at another position.

On hitting alone - i.e. not factoring in defense or the positional adjustment - Ortiz compares with Eddie Murray, Tony Gwynn, and Rod Carew if you make the same adjustment to them. None of them compare to Willie Mays or anything, but they're all in the HOF largely because of their bat.
   460. Adam Starblind Posted: December 23, 2021 at 07:24 AM (#6058455)
Very interesting point about positional adjustment, village. Put a typical SS at 1B and he’d have trouble keeping his foot in the bag to make plays your typical 6’3” if somewhat lumbering first basemen would make without much problem, never mind the throws that would sail over his head. Obviously some excellent first basemen aren’t tall (Hernandez, Mientkiewicz in my lifetime), but they are the exception.
   461. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 12:29 PM (#6058470)
I've also pointed out several times before - not in this context - that the positional adjustment doesn't reflect a skill differential, but rather an opportunity differential. It was developed by looking at players who switched positions - and thus are largely an apples-to-apples set of skills. As I've said before, the difference in positional adjustment between SS and 1B suggests SS are far more capable of playing 1B than any empirical evidence would suggest. Someone selected for SS has greater range, but at 1B their range is nearly useless. It's not that they lose that skill if they switch! It's that the different position doesn't give them the opportunity to convert that skill to value.


Hmmm, I thought it had to do with positional scarcity, not with players moving positions. That is one can find a rather large number of players who can do an adequate job at 1B, but it is far more difficult, there are far fewer players, who can do an adequate job at SS. Further, pretty much any player who can do an adequate job in CF can do an adequate job in a corner OF, but the converse is not true.
   462. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 12:33 PM (#6058472)
Put a typical SS at 1B and he’d have trouble keeping his foot in the bag to make plays your typical 6’3” if somewhat lumbering first basemen would make without much problem, never mind the throws that would sail over his head.


Don't forget athleticism though. A player athletic enough to play SS would be able to move off the bag to catch some balls and back to the bag in time to get the out except in the case of bang-bang plays. They would easily jump to catch a high throw and tag the bag to get the out, again except in the case of bang-bang plays. Then add in they would have more range, and they would make more plays with the arm than the 1B who cannot throw well, which is why he is at 1B instead of in a corner OF position in the first place. Granted, Freddie Patek is not cut out to play 1B, but a 5' 10" SS is likely going to be perfectly fine there despite the lack of height relative to other more typical 1B.
   463. Adam Starblind Posted: December 23, 2021 at 12:46 PM (#6058473)
Has it been shown that a left-handed first baseman has a meaningful advantage over a right-handed one (as is the conventional wisdom)?

I would expect at the very least that a lefty 1B has a higher likelihood of having a strong arm than a righty (because arm strength probably isn't what got the lefty positioned at 1B). Every SS is right-handed, so that could be a factor--potentially nullifying a SS's presumed advantage in arm strength and/or disadvantaging the transplanted SS because he is not left-handed. And there's little reason to think a lefty first baseman doesn't have the athletic tools of an infielder.
   464. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 01:55 PM (#6058482)
I would expect at the very least that a lefty 1B has a higher likelihood of having a strong arm than a righty (because arm strength probably isn't what got the lefty positioned at 1B). Every SS is right-handed, so that could be a factor--potentially nullifying a SS's presumed advantage in arm strength and/or disadvantaging the transplanted SS because he is not left-handed. And there's little reason to think a lefty first baseman doesn't have the athletic tools of an infielder.


One advantage is on pickoff throws since the glove is on the runners side of the 1B's body and he doesn't have to reach across his body to make the tag. A negligible difference. The other is that most balls will be to a 1B's right, hence to his glove side again. Probably a wash due to the superior athleticism of a player who is good enough to play SS. There's plenty of reasons to think a lefty 1B doesn't have the athletic tools of an infielder, and all you have to do is look at Ortiz, McGriff, McCovey, and other lumbering, as you said, left handed 1B. It's not solely because they're left handed that they end up there, it's that they don't move well enough to play a corner OF position. It's why players move to 1B later in their careers when they can't play defense well enough at other more demanding positions but they still hit well enough to stay in the lineup.
   465. John DiFool2 Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:00 PM (#6058483)
Has anyone looked at the defensive "ceiling" of a 1B-man? How many runs could the best, ideal fielder save over average/replacement [Keith Hernandez natch]? Could they approach what Brooksie did over at third? Do all the scoops and such equalize with the greater number of 3B chances (more RH hitters)?
   466. villageidiom Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:05 PM (#6058485)
Don't forget athleticism though. A player athletic enough to play SS would be able to move off the bag to catch some balls and back to the bag in time to get the out except in the case of bang-bang plays.
I've been watching baseball for 45 years and I've yet to see a SS come off the bag to get a wild throw on a play at second and jump back on before the runner gets there. At least jumping off horizontally. Vertically, sure, jumping up to snag a high throw and then come down on the bag, that I've seen. But I also see that from every 1B.
Hmmm, I thought it had to do with positional scarcity, not with players moving positions.
Positional scarcity is the intent of it, yes. But the quantity was estimated by defensive output of players who switched positions. Except for DH of course, where it was assumed DHs are defensive butchers and hurt their teams defensively by existing.
   467. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:25 PM (#6058486)
Has it been shown that a left-handed first baseman has a meaningful advantage over a right-handed one (as is the conventional wisdom)?


Advantages:

1) On a pick-off, the glove is to the side of the runner. Keith Hernandez used to position himself in foul territory with his glove on the bag (I think this is actually illegal, but they never called Keith on it).

2) On a bunt or other grounder where the first basemen charges the ball, he/she is better positioned for a throw to second or third.

3) On a play right at the first basemen, or two his left, the left-handed first basemen is better positioned for a throw to second or third.

On the other hand (joke there):
(4) On a play to the first basemen's right, the natural backhand move of the right-handed first basemen naturally twists his/her body such that a throw to second or third isn't too difficult, and a throw back to first is still natural. However, on this play, the left-handed first basemen is less well-positioned for a throw to second or third, depending on whether he/she had to move back, and even less so for a play at first or home.

None of these advantages are that great, but I think all-in-all the advantage tilts slightly to the advantage of the left-handed first basemen, probably not nearly enough to counteract the particular skill level of an individual athlete. In a game that features less bunting, possibly the advantage tilts to the right handed first basemen, because of (4).
   468. SoSH U at work Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:33 PM (#6058487)
Being left hands is a significant advantage for a first baseman because most of the throws go to his right. For perspective, try to imagine the throw a left handed third baseman would have to make on a ball he has to charge.

And a shortstop’s athleticism and defensive chops would easily overcome some the height disadvantage. First baseman typically aren’t put there because they’re tall. They’re put there because there’s no other defensive position that requires less skill.
   469. villageidiom Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:33 PM (#6058488)
Has anyone looked at the defensive "ceiling" of a 1B-man? How many runs could the best, ideal fielder save over average/replacement [Keith Hernandez natch]? Could they approach what Brooksie did over at third? Do all the scoops and such equalize with the greater number of 3B chances (more RH hitters)?
Keith Hernandez was a career +1.3 dWAR, or +0.1 dWAR per 162 games. Dick Stuart was a -12.8 dWAR, or -1.9 dWAR per 162 games. That should give us a sense of the general boundaries in a WAR context. In terms of runs above average, Hernandez was +9 per 162 games; Stuart was -9 per 162.

In his career, Robinson averaged +16 RAA per 162. Robinson is almost as many runs above average at 3B as Keith Hernandez was above one of the worst 1B.

   470. Adam Starblind Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:35 PM (#6058489)
First base and corner outfield are quite different skills though. You can be quick and rangy on the infield without having the foot speed necessary to be a decent outfielder. You cherry-picked some lumbering oafs. I can cherry pick Keith Hernandez, Mark Grace, and John Olerud. It was always said of Hernandez at least that he would’ve been a SS if he were righty. Nobody ever suggested putting him in CF.
   471. villageidiom Posted: December 23, 2021 at 02:56 PM (#6058490)
Keith Hernandez used to position himself in foul territory with his glove on the bag (I think this is actually illegal, but they never called Keith on it).
All players other than catcher must be "on fair territory" when the ball is put in play. I suppose it's possible that could mean he could have one foot in fair territory.
And a shortstop’s athleticism and defensive chops would easily overcome some the height disadvantage. First baseman typically aren’t put there because they’re tall. They’re put there because there’s no other defensive position that requires less skill.
And because they're tall.

That aside, a shortstop's athleticism doesn't mean #### at 1B. It overcomes almost nothing at the position. 90% of the job is running to the base, turning, and catching an easily catchable throw. If he can range farther to his right, great, now the pitcher has to cover on a routine grounder to second that the 1B cut off, and will drop the throw. If he can range further to his left, great, he stopped that foul grounder, the ball girl is relieved. If he can charge a bunt faster, great, he has to pirouette to make a throw anywhere because he's righthanded, and he's more likely to make a wild throw. Nearly everything that makes a great SS great is either irrelevant at 1B or offset by something that hurts 1B defense. SS skills are not an untapped asset at 1B; they are a pointless asset at 1B. Athleticism is only slightly more useful at 1B than is knowing the lyrics to Uptown Funk.
   472. Adam Starblind Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:00 PM (#6058492)
I think they would probably tell the first baseman not to cut off the second baseman on balls to his right when the play is to first.
   473. SoSH U at work Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:00 PM (#6058493)
Nonsense, vi.

Keith Hernandez had the skills and size of a middle infielder in a lefthander’s body. He was head and shoulders better than those tall galoots that you think are so uniquely qualified to handle the position.
   474. villageidiom Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:22 PM (#6058498)
First base and corner outfield are quite different skills though.
I know. I was just trying players at other positions to see where RAA/162 puts them. My whole point is that the opportunity to add defensive value at 1B is narrower than at other positions, and the ranges of RAA/162 seems to back that up (albeit anecdotally).

I can cherry pick Keith Hernandez, Mark Grace, and John Olerud.
Mark Grace and John Olerud have negative dWAR for their careers. Some of the best defenders at 1B you can cherry pick were costing their teams wins on defense. That is, they were costing their teams wins on defense if we are to use the positional adjustment in this way. If you look at RAA/162 they're great (+5 Grace, +7 Olerud) and you're a lot closer to evaluating what they actually did in the position they played. But as we've seen, that has its own limits because you can't really sustain +20 at 1B due to the nature of the opportunities there. A great 1B can't stand out from the average at their position by as much as a great 3B, or a great SS, or a great RF; and it's not because of skill. The positional adjustment just says pfft, anyone can do it, but, like, we're not evaluating some dude on a mountaintop in Pakistan for the HoF as a 1B. We're evaluating the people who played the position. If you want the positional adjustment to calibrate 1B relative to SS for the sake of HOF discussion, then you're advocating for the Hall of Shortstops, not the Hall of Fame. Otherwise the positional adjustment is irrelevant at best and obfuscating at worst.

   475. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:26 PM (#6058499)
 458. The Duke Posted: December 22, 2021 at 11:07 PM (#6058444)
Where are all the ballots ???


I think it's always dead late December through New Year's, then picks up again in January before the announcement
   476. Karl from NY Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:33 PM (#6058500)
https://www.nytimes.com/1985/07/20/sports/hernandez-is-warned.html

https://www.nytimes.com/1985/07/21/sports/next-move-will-be-mets.html

An opponent (the Cardinals) complaining about Keith caused the rule to be clarified, that "on fair territory" for the fielder means entirely rather than partially. Before that, he would stand with his left foot in foul territory with a runner there, to be positioned closer to tagging the runner.
   477. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:38 PM (#6058502)
I've been watching baseball for 45 years and I've yet to see a SS come off the bag to get a wild throw on a play at second and jump back on before the runner gets there. At least jumping off horizontally.


I didn't say jump to the side, I said come off the back to make the catch and then tag the bag. Presumably you've seen how SS have good, quick feet both on hard hit balls to one side or the other, as well as around the bag on a double play. So if they can't make the play by stretching because they're quite a bit shorter than a typical 1B, they could certainly take a quick step to catch the ball and then tag the bag.

Positional scarcity is the intent of it, yes. But the quantity was estimated by defensive output of players who switched positions.


Cool, thanks.
   478. villageidiom Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:43 PM (#6058503)
I think they would probably tell the first baseman not to cut off the second baseman on balls to his right when the play is to first.
In which case athleticism and range are irrelevant. That's my point. At SS that translates to value; at 1B it doesn't. It's not the nature of the players who play there; it's the nature of the position itself.

Keith Hernandez had the skills and size of a middle infielder in a lefthander’s body. He was head and shoulders better than those tall galoots that you think are so uniquely qualified to handle the position.
The positional adjustment helps us conclude Hernandez was 1 win better than a replacement 1B, across the span of his career. One win better than replacement.

Like, you and I both know Hernandez was a spectacular 1B. I'm saying stats that rely on the positional adjustment say he wasn't, because the positional adjustment downgrades the value of 1B. Per dWAR there are no spectacular 1B. Per RAA or RAR there are a few, and defensively Hernandez is the best or among the best. The range in RAA between the best and the worst at 1B is narrow, and that in itself penalizes 1B relative to other positions. But it's the nature of the position, not the players. That's important because it's the context in which he played. It's a relevant context just as much as "mostly pitched for horrible teams" is a relevant context for Blyleven. When evaluating for the HOF we want to evaluate the player's actual accomplishments, and the context is an important part of that.

We know "spectacular 1B" and "spectacular SS" are different things because we know the opportunities at each position are different, and spectacle manifests differently as a result. The positional adjustment would have us believe there are no spectacular 1B because 1B are in the same universe as SS and no 1B can be as spectacular as a spectacular SS. And, like, it's right? But that's not what the HOF is about. It's not the Hall of Shortstops, or at least it shouldn't be.
   479. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 03:44 PM (#6058504)
You cherry-picked some lumbering oafs. I can cherry pick Keith Hernandez, Mark Grace, and John Olerud.


I gave representative examples of 1B. Take a look at the position in any given season and honestly tell us if you find more folks like McGriff, Ortiz and McCovey or more like Hernandez, Grace and Olerud. I'll start us off with 2021 and at least 100 games played at 1B courtesy of Stathead

https://stathead.com/tiny/bhDyF
   480. DL from MN Posted: December 23, 2021 at 04:08 PM (#6058508)
dWAR just adds noise to the data. The positional replacement value includes defense AND offense. Better to use RField if you want to look at run contribution on defense.

First base is more difficult to provide significant defensive value. It's the easiest position. Catch everything hit right at you and catch everything thrown to 1B. First base rarely fields bunts or turns the double play. They aren't usually involved in the outfield relay.
   481. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: December 23, 2021 at 04:15 PM (#6058509)
The defensive value of a first basemen (I want to write, 1Bman, but that looks wrong), in comparison to other positions, is more dependent I think on the players around him, and I wonder how that affects the normal metrics.

If you have an infield with some erratic arms, a first basemen who is good at snagging wild throws can turn a bad SS into an adequate one. I know I'm going back again to 1970's Dodgers analogies, but one thing Steve Garvey was excellent at was scooping balls in the dirt (he was very short, so he wasn't much good for snagging high throws), and I would imagine this helped Ron Cey and Bill Russell, neither of whom were known for their arms, and Russell of course had his finger crushed by a Mike Lacoss fastball in 1980 and his throwing became more erratic afterwards. Tony Perez became adept at scooping the turf-bounce specials thrown by Dave Concepcion.

I guess my question is - one of the major skills of a first basemen is receiving throws, and I would imagine that skill could just as easily be counted towards the infielder rather than the first basemen, turning a below-average SS, for example, into an average one, without the metrics really being able to tell. Can RAA or whatever really tell the difference here?

There was that whole argument in the New Bill James Historical Abstract about Keith Hernandez versus Steve Garvey, with Steve Garvey having so many more putouts than Keith Hernandez, simply because Hernandez insisted the pitcher come cover the base (wanting to get them into the habit) but Garvey preferring to do it himself, since his arm was suspect. So, putouts, range factor, throwing errors, asists, all that stuff I can imagine RAA being able to capture, but I am not sure about the actual "receiving throws" component.
   482. TJ Posted: December 23, 2021 at 04:55 PM (#6058514)
Michael Hunt submits a blank HOF ballot- the last time he voted for someone was two years ago with a Jeter-only ballot...
   483. taxandbeerguy Posted: December 23, 2021 at 05:05 PM (#6058516)
Methinks the next time he might vote for someone is 2024 - With Adrian Beltre. Although he might not be inner-circle enough, so maybe it's Ichiro! the following year.
   484. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 23, 2021 at 05:14 PM (#6058517)
Michael Hunt submits a blank HOF ballot- the last time he voted for someone was two years ago with a Jeter-only ballot...


Since I'm childish, I'll be the one to make the remark about his belligerence being appropriate since his name is Mike Hunt.
   485. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 05:17 PM (#6058518)
The positional adjustment helps us conclude Hernandez was 1 win better than a replacement 1B, across the span of his career. One win better than replacement.

Like, you and I both know Hernandez was a spectacular 1B. I'm saying stats that rely on the positional adjustment say he wasn't, because the positional adjustment downgrades the value of 1B. Per dWAR there are no spectacular 1B.


I don't think this is accurate. That's not what the positional adjustment does, and as DL said dWAR is not the tool to use, Rfield is. Hernandez was 117 runs better than an average 1B, let alone a "replacement 1B." That is spectacular. What the positional adjustment says it that it is not as spectacular as a SS who was 117 runs better than and average SS.

Per RAA or RAR there are a few, and defensively Hernandez is the best or among the best. The range in RAA between the best and the worst at 1B is narrow, and that in itself penalizes 1B relative to other positions.


Not sure what you mean by this. Hernandez was about 300 RAA for his career. Now there are probably not a lot of guys with -300 RAA because if they're that bad, they're not going to last long enough to accumulate 8500 PA's at any position. But he was clearly way above average, and I'm sure there are guys who were way below average, at least on a seasonal basis. For example, Keith's best season he was 50 RAA in 1979, in 1980 he was 40. In those same seasons there was -24 and -21 by Montanez, -23 by Rose, -17 by Pat Putnam. I used at least 100 games played at 1B for this.
   486. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 05:24 PM (#6058520)
482. TJ Posted: December 23, 2021 at 04:55 PM (#6058514)
Michael Hunt submits a blank HOF ballot- the last time he voted for someone was two years ago with a Jeter-only ballot...


Same as Steve Marcus, pretty lame, IMO.
   487. Walt Davis Posted: December 23, 2021 at 05:42 PM (#6058521)
Obviously there aren't many examples of players with a lot of time at SS and 1B.

Ernie Banks, with good knees, was an above-average SS. Banks, with bad knees in his early 30s, was an above-average 1B (+18 Rtot in his first 3 full seasons). As he aged, he became below-average. In dWAR terms, Banks 31-40 had -7 dWAR in 5200 PA. That is roughly the same as Derek Jeter ages 31-40 (in 6400 PA). In short, bad-knees Ernie would arguably have been among the worst SS ever seen but was an average 1B in his 30s. Banks officially 6-1.

Oddly, Miguel Cairo had 94 career starts and 971 innings at 1B. This started in his 30s. Over that time, he was average. Playing all over the place, he had 1.4 dWAR ages 31-38 in just 1800 PA. (Officially, Cairo was 6-1 ... I'd have guess 5-9. :-)

Michael Young was terrible wherever they played him, he got 98 starts, about 900 innings at 1B and was bad (Rtot) or atrocious (DRS). Again that was all late in his career and he'd been a terrible SS. His primary SS years were ages 27-31 and he had -3 dWAR. He got chunks of time at 1B for ages 34-36 and had -6 dWAR. Officially 6-1.

Chris Gomez was pretty terrible wherever they put him -- he has some really bad Rtot years early. He ended up with just 68 starts, 680 innings at 1B, all for ages 33-37. Rtot puts him a bit avove, DRS a bit below. For ages 33-37, he was fine at 1 dWAR over about 2 seasons worth. His main SS years were 25-31 during which he had -2.5 dWAR. Officially 6-1.

Old Nomar got 200 starts, 1700 innings at 1B. He's rated as a bit below-average. That's all from ages 32-35, -2 dWAR. He was rated above-average at SS, about 1.2 dWAR year in his prime. Officially 6-0.

Old, injured Fregosi got 153 starts, 1300 innings, rated as average. Alas Fregosi is sort of pointless to discuss as pre/post-injury are two completely different players. The first guy is an HoFer, the second is near replacement. FWIW, -3 dWAR 31-36 in less than 2 seasons of PAs. Officially 6-1.

I'm sure there are others that somebody can dig out. A mixed bag with no strong conclusions that I see. Except for Cairo, the SS who got some reasonable amount of time at 1B were old and either injured or poor-fielding SS. This group still managed to generally be around average at 1B in mostly part-time play. Of course many players who end up at 1B, especially in the pre-DH days or the NL, did so in their 30s after an injury or at least not being able to play OF or 3B adequately anymore. Banks is the only SS I know of who ever got enough regular playing time at 1B for long enough to really say he had adapted to the position as much as possible.

So age/injury is one factor that can affect the positional adjustment. I suspect it's not a big deal but 1B will still tend to be older, SS younger. Similarly, lots of SS get moved off the position -- to 2B/3B if they can hit some, to utility IF if they can't -- around age 30. Same with CF to LF/RF. Just my impression but the 3B to 1B and OF to 1B transitions seem less common these days and young 1B are more common. Shifting has also likely changed the defensive requirements of 1B. Still, I suspect if we did a proper weighted mean age of each position, we'd find 1B and LF (and DH obviously) are the oldest and SS/CF the youngest. Surely somebody has looked at the typical aging pattern of dWAR???

I also suspect today's SSs are not as defensively talented (in an absolute or relative sense) as they used to be. The emphasis these days is much more on offense, esepcially power obviously. It's a shame height and weight data aren't reliable (and not updated seasonally) but I suspect today's SS are larger and heavier. I point this out all the time and I know we can't rely on either measure very much but Corey Seager is listed at 6-4, 215; Correa, 6-4, 220. Winfield, probably from his rookie year, at 6-6, 220; Schmidt 6-2, 195; Larry Walker, 6-2, 185; Bryce Harper 6-3, 210. We shouldn't be surprised SS of those dimensions hit HRs** but we also shouldn't be surprised if they aren't susbstantially better fielders than Matt Olson (6-5,225) or Nolan Arenado (6-2, 215).

By the way, Keith Hernandez is listed at just 6-0 which is more likely to be an over-estimate than an under-estimate. Height isn't that big of a deal at 1B. You don't want a 5-7 guy but an extra three inches will almost never matter and won't matter at all if the 6-3 guy isn't flexible enough for a good stretch or has poorer footwork. A 6-5 Olerud might be ideal but there's no particularly good reason to think a 6-4 McCovey would outfield a 6-1 Banks.

** if anything, a bit disappointed they're hitting just 20 (Seager) to 25 (Correa) a year.

   488. The Duke Posted: December 23, 2021 at 06:15 PM (#6058522)
Ortiz’s streak comes to a crashing halt. So is Derek jeter the only guy he’s ever voted for to get into the Hall of Fame ? That would be weird.
   489. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 23, 2021 at 06:31 PM (#6058523)
Michael Hunt submits a blank HOF ballot- the last time he voted for someone was two years ago with a Jeter-only ballot...

Well somebody has to be the guardian of the Hall of Fame! (Never mind the fact that the Hall itself probably doesn't much appreciate empty stages on induction weekend.)
   490. John DiFool2 Posted: December 23, 2021 at 06:42 PM (#6058525)
481, it was Buckner not KH, but point remains.

The positional adjustment just says pfft, anyone can do it, but, like, we're not evaluating some dude on a mountaintop in Pakistan for the HoF as a 1B.


I wonder if, on some level, the positional adjustment is tautological; we penalize 1B with the P.A. because it's an easy position; and it's an easy position because of the default P.A. Yeah, we gotta use the infernal thing to compare across positions, but it still seems to be a fiction in some sense to me.

I think they would probably tell the first baseman not to cut off the second baseman on balls to his right when the play is to first.

In which case athleticism and range are irrelevant. That's my point. At SS that translates to value; at 1B it doesn't. It's not the nature of the players who play there; it's the nature of the position itself.


If the 1B is in a position to frequently cut off balls going to the 2B (who, we assume, can still get the out at first even if he has to throw to the pitcher covering) that is a sign that they aren't in optimal positions. A good 1B would allow the 2B to play more up the middle, and perhaps ripple over to SS and 3B as well (without muddying the waters further by considering shifts).

My query is very simple: what percentage of grounders (and low liners) get hit to specific infield locations? Google Fu is failing me tonight, but if the 1B slice has say half the number that 3B has (more pull RH vs. pull LH), then the points upthread remain more or less accurate. If however there are a sufficient number of such balls headed to the 1B slice, then a good 1B can pick up a lot of value, more than the quasi-fiction of the P.A. would seem to indicate they can.
   491. alilisd Posted: December 23, 2021 at 06:44 PM (#6058527)
(Never mind the fact that the Hall itself probably doesn't much appreciate empty stages on induction weekend.)


Don't worry, they made that very clear to the Era Committee voters ;-)
   492. Howie Menckel Posted: December 23, 2021 at 08:15 PM (#6058541)
Michael Hunt submits

I uaed to know this guy - and as you can imagine, we always always always called him "Michael" (as Post 484 might have guessed). I don't know of anybody who ever had the nerve to ask him....
   493. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: December 23, 2021 at 09:53 PM (#6058557)
Wait, is Michael Hunt the real name of a HoF voter? I figured it was a fake name from someone who wanted to be anonymous.
   494. John DiFool2 Posted: December 23, 2021 at 10:55 PM (#6058562)
It's a joke name sir, like Dan Shaughnessy or Joe Buck.
   495. Howie Menckel Posted: December 23, 2021 at 11:27 PM (#6058564)
Michael mainly covered the Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA in the 1990s, then wound up as that paper's columnist for a good stretch after that.

pretty standard bog Midwestern fella.
   496. The Duke Posted: December 24, 2021 at 11:23 AM (#6058585)
Juan Vene: Rolen (add), Petitte, Wagner and a drop for Helton.

I’m guessing that’s a one of a kind ballot
   497. TJ Posted: December 24, 2021 at 11:38 AM (#6058586)
Juan Vene: Rolen (add), Petitte, Wagner and a drop for Helton.

I’m guessing that’s a one of a kind ballot


Ahhh, the annual Juan Vene HOF Ballot Experience!
   498. Walt Davis Posted: December 24, 2021 at 02:45 PM (#6058590)
Merry Christmas everybody! May all of your favorites be elected to the HoF!
   499. Jack Sommers Posted: December 24, 2021 at 05:35 PM (#6058603)
Merry Christmas Walt ! I look forward to another year of chatting with you and seeing what you have to say. Stay awesome ;)
   500. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: December 24, 2021 at 08:52 PM (#6058611)
Merry Christmas to all who celebrate and Happy New Year to those who follow the Gregorian Calendar!

Page 5 of 12 pages ‹ First  < 3 4 5 6 7 >  Last ›

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Forsch 10 From Navarone (Dayn)
for his generous support.

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogNationals burned by quirky 'fourth-out rule' as Pirates score despite lining into inning-ending double play
(58 - 9:36am, Jul 02)
Last: John DiFool2

NewsblogIndependence Day Weekend OMNICHATTER, for July 1-4, 2022
(16 - 9:34am, Jul 02)
Last: Dillon Gee Escape Plan

Newsblog2022 NBA Playoffs thread
(3734 - 8:04am, Jul 02)
Last: PJ Martinez

NewsblogYankees looking for OF help with Aaron Hicks, Joey Gallo struggling
(14 - 7:28am, Jul 02)
Last: ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick

NewsblogOutfielder Austin Hays becomes sixth player in Baltimore Orioles history to hit for cycle
(3 - 2:04am, Jul 02)
Last: FernandoPoplar

NewsblogWhy Juan Soto’s Reported Extension Offer Is Not As Outlandish As It Might Seem
(20 - 11:54pm, Jul 01)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogWhen do the Tigers and Royals have to admit that 'rebuilding' has turned into plain old losing?
(22 - 9:37pm, Jul 01)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogRanking the home uniforms of all 30 MLB teams
(24 - 9:29pm, Jul 01)
Last: Joey Joe Joe Junior Felix Jose Cruz Junior

Sox TherapyHey Now
(15 - 9:06pm, Jul 01)
Last: Jose is Absurdly Correct but not Helpful

NewsblogBoston media explodes after Red Sox blow it without unvaccinated closer Houck
(91 - 7:53pm, Jul 01)
Last: Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant

NewsblogRob Manfred wants you to know: He doesn't hate baseball, he wants to save it
(46 - 7:35pm, Jul 01)
Last: Doug Jones threw harder than me

Sox TherapyNow That's A Road Trip
(46 - 7:15pm, Jul 01)
Last: Captain Joe Bivens, Pointless and Wonderful

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for Thursday, June 30, 2022
(16 - 4:47pm, Jul 01)
Last: Textbook Editor

NewsblogFrustrated Mike Trout Spots His Own Pitcher Tipping Pitches While Standing in Center Field
(56 - 1:54pm, Jul 01)
Last: Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network)

NewsblogSt. Pete mayor reopens talks on future of Rays stadium site
(7 - 11:02am, Jul 01)
Last: Lassus

Page rendered in 0.8781 seconds
45 querie(s) executed