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Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-12-2021

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, January 12, 1921:

A three-cornered conference involving John McGraw of the Giants, George Gibson of the Pirates and Fred Mitchell of the Braves, with Rabbit Maranville as the main topic of discussion, was sidetracked early [yesterday] evening after it had been scheduled by the three managers. The pilots were in earnest about the matter, but McGraw was rushed by several of his friends, who insisted upon a fraternal gathering…

Both Gibson and [Pirates President Barney] Dreyfuss were peeved over the outcome of what was supposed to be an important business meeting.
...
[The Braves] say they will give [Maranville] for Carey, Whitted, a shortstop, and a sum of money said to be $40,000.

Yes, I’m sure they would have. Maranville was a good player, a bit of a stretch as a Hall of Famer, but one of the best shortstops in baseball at this point.

All the Braves were asking for was prime Max Carey, an everyday 3B/OF (Whitted), a starting shortstop, and the salaries of Ty Cobb and Babe Ruth combined.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 12, 2021 at 08:09 AM | 11 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: crazytown bananapants, dugout, history

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   1. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: January 12, 2021 at 08:11 AM (#5999185)
No real holes on today's Birthday Team, but also no elite players. Just a bunch of guys who were somewhere between "pretty good" and "really good".

C: Admiral Schlei (9.3 WAR)
1B: Joe Hauser (12.1 WAR)
2B/Manager: Henry Larkin (28.7 WAR)
3B: Bill Madlock (38.2 WAR)
SS: Bobby Crosby (5.4 WAR)
LF: Mike Marshall (10.1 WAR)
CF: Ed Swartwood (17.2 WAR)
RF: George Browne (7.2 WAR)

SP: Dontrelle Willis (19.7 WAR)
SP: Randy Jones (17.7 WAR)
SP: Togie Pittinger (13.4 WAR)
SP: Ivan Nova (12.1 WAR)
SP: Alex Wood (11.4 WAR)
RP: Luis Ayala (8.1 WAR)

Ballplayer or minor Flintstones character?: Phil Mudrock
Fun baseball card, sad story: Rod Craig
Fun name: Chub Sullivan
One of my favorite players of all time: Casey Candaele
Rick's "big" brother: Paul Reuschel
What did Rajon Rondo do after receiving criticism from a Bulls teammate?: Rip Wade
   2. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 12, 2021 at 10:08 AM (#5999212)
No real holes on today's Birthday Team, but also no elite players. Just a bunch of guys who were somewhere between "pretty good" and "really good".

This team defines "pretty good". 13 cromulent players and Madlock.
   3. AndrewJ Posted: January 12, 2021 at 11:43 AM (#5999234)
Also on today's Birthday Team...

Late-1970s Royals director of group sales/special events: Rush Limbaugh
   4. salvomania Posted: January 12, 2021 at 12:25 PM (#5999255)
A lot of promising rookies who flamed out sooner then you'd expect... in addition to Dontrelle (2003 NL ROTY, last full season at age 25) and Bobby Crosby (2004 AL ROTY, negative career WAR after 2005), you've got Rich Loiselle (29 saves as a rookie for the '97 Pirates, negative career WAR afterwards), Chris Ray (33 saves as a rookie for the 2006 Orioles, 0.2 career WAR afterwards), and Scott Olsen (12-game winner as a rookie for 2006 Marlins, finished 5th in NL H/9 and 7th in K/9, negative WAR rest of career).

One "rookie" who did well later was Gene Martin, who went 4-for-11 with a homer in a call-up for the 1968 Senators, then hit 189 homers in six seasons in Japan. An article at baseballguru.com has him as part of the All-1970s Central League Team.

   5. Ron J Posted: January 12, 2021 at 01:05 PM (#5999266)
Memory says that of the uber-prospects Mack picked up in the 20s Hauser was the biggest deal. Then he broke his leg and some kid named Foxx proved tricky to move off first. (and neither could really handle any other position)

I think his minor league record suggests he'd have still hit in the majors and was kind of squeezed.
   6. vortex of dissipation Posted: January 12, 2021 at 01:19 PM (#5999268)
Then he broke his leg and some kid named Foxx proved tricky to move off first.


One thing that's always fascinated me about Foxx is that deep into his career as a great slugger, both Connie Mack (in 1935) and Joe Cronin (in 1940) made Foxx their regular catcher for extended periods. You'd think with a bat like his, the last thing you'd want is for him to endure the wear and tear, and increased chance of injury, of playing catcher.
   7. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: January 12, 2021 at 01:35 PM (#5999274)
Ballplayer or minor Flintstones character?: Phil Mudrock

from David Laurila on twitter:
"Players born on today's date include Phil Mudrock, who pitched in one game for the Chicago Cubs in 1963. The five San Francisco Giants batters he faced combine for 11,087 hits over the course of their careers. Mudrock surrendered two of them."

Davenport, Mays, McCovey, Cepeda, Felipe Alou
   8. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 12, 2021 at 01:51 PM (#5999280)
3B: Bill Madlock (38.2 WAR)
Four batting titles & a lifetime .300 hitter, but one-and-done for the Hall of Fame. Might have made it in an earlier era, especially if he’d been a Frankie Frisch pal. Pre-Internet era Hall voters were a bit more discerning then they are sometimes given credit for.
   9. vortex of dissipation Posted: January 12, 2021 at 01:58 PM (#5999283)
from David Laurila on twitter:
"Players born on today's date include Phil Mudrock, who pitched in one game for the Chicago Cubs in 1963. The five San Francisco Giants batters he faced combine for 11,087 hits over the course of their careers. Mudrock surrendered two of them."

Davenport, Mays, McCovey, Cepeda, Felipe Alou


Mike Palagyi, a 22-year-old rookie pitcher for the Washington Senators in 1939. pitched in only one game in his MLB career, and failed to record an out while giving up three earned runs, leaving him with a lifetime MLB ERA of ∞. Palagyi came in to pitch the top of the ninth against the Boston Red Sox at Griffith Stadium on August 18, 1939, with the Red Sox leading 3-1. He walked Doc Cramer, hit Jimmie Foxx with a pitch, walked Ted Williams, and then walked Joe Cronin to force in a run. At this point manager Bucky Harris relieved him; the next batter singled in two more runs, making Palagyi’s final line 0 innings, 3 walks, 1 HBP, 3 runs, all earned. He threw only two strikes in 15 pitches. But look at those names. Ted Williams, Jimmie Foxx, Joe Cronin. Three Hall of Famers, including two of the very best hitters to ever play the game. And the one player who isn’t in the Hall of Fame, Doc Cramer, is little remembered today, but had a 20-year career in which he got 2,705 hits, which is the most of any of the four. The four players combined for 10,290 hits, 1,262 home runs, and a .316 batting average. As Palagyi later said, “It was a nightmare”.
   10. Ron J Posted: January 12, 2021 at 03:16 PM (#5999307)
#6 I believe the answer is that he had a good arm (probably plus for third base) but simply wasn't mobile enough to play other positions well. So they'd try to get some use out of the arm behind the plate. But a catcher with mobility issues ... Plus as you say the risk of injury.



Side note: Supposedly he also had a knuckleball. But primarily threw fastballs in his pitching stints.
   11. Walt Davis Posted: January 12, 2021 at 05:07 PM (#5999331)
Randy Jones is also an odd case. For 1975-76, 600 IP, 42-26, 2.50 ERA, 135 ERA+, 1 CYA and a 2nd place finish ... <3 K/9! Those Padres teams were 36 games under across those two years. He missed time the following year but not a major injury but had his last good season in 1978.

On Madlock -- he didn't even make it to 7400 PA. That didn't require "discernment" on the part of HoF voters. One might also note that Madlock debuted the same year as Garvey who those discerning voters gave 42% support. They also gave Tony Oliva, 3 batting titles, <7000 PA, 300 career BA 37% in his 12th year.

Sorry if this is a spoiler for an upcoming dugout, but Maranville was traded that offseason. He went to Pitt for Walter Barbare, Fred Nicholson, Billy Southworth and $15,000. Southworth was a solid player in his prime and gave the Braves 7.5 WAR ovver 3 years before being traded to the Giants. Barbare was the SS replacment nad he was good in 21 and an absolute disaster in 22 (42 OPS+) and never played in the majors again. Many of you will note that $15,000 is $25,000 less than $40,000.

Nicholson looks interesting. In 20, in 271 PA at age 25, he hit 360/404/530, good for a 164 OPS+. In 21, in 272 PA, he hit 327/370/490, 132 OPS+. Why wasn't he getting more PT? In 22, he was a disaster and never played MLB again. He doesn't have a SABR bio but was nicknamed Shoemaker. He was a RHB but he wasn't platooned heavily in 20 but was mainly used vs LHP in 21.

The 21 Braves did have a good OF, including Southworth, but ... my god! ... they gave 622 PA to a 1B named Walter Holke who put up a 68 OPS+. Holke had been a mostly full-time 1-WAR sorta 1B for the previous 5 years and was not terrible in 1920 ... from 1921-1925, he had about 2600 PA and -5 WAR, 3 of those seasons as a full-timer. He followed up that 68 OPS+ with a 72 and never topped 88 again so it's not like they were being fooled by his bat.

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