This post is for voting and discussion in the 66th round of balloting for the Circle of Greats (COG). This round adds to the ballot those players born in 1918, a group that includes some guys who were pretty good at baseball. Rules and lists are after the jump.
This round’s new group of 1918-born players joins the holdovers from previous rounds to comprise the full set of players eligible to receive your votes this round.
The new group of 1918-born players, in order to join the eligible list, must have played at least 10 seasons in the major leagues or generated at least 20 Wins Above Replacement (“WAR”, as calculated by baseball-reference.com, and for this purpose meaning 20 total WAR for everyday players and 20 pitching WAR for pitchers).
Each submitted ballot, if it is to be counted, must include three and only three eligible players. The one player who appears on the most ballots cast in the round is inducted into the Circle of Greats. Players who fail to win induction but appear on half or more of the ballots that are cast win four added future rounds of ballot eligibility. Players who appear on 25% or more of the ballots cast, but less than 50%, earn two added future rounds of ballot eligibility. Any other player in the top 9 (including ties) in ballot appearances, or who appears on at least 10% of the ballots, wins one additional round of ballot eligibility.
All voting for this round closes at 11:59 PM EDT Tuesday, August 5, while changes to previously cast ballots are allowed until 11:59 PM EDT Sunday, August 3.
If you’d like to follow the vote tally, and/or check to make sure I’ve recorded your vote correctly, you can see my ballot-counting spreadsheet for this round here: COG 1918 Vote Tally. I’ll be updating the spreadsheet periodically with the latest votes. Initially, there is a row in the spreadsheet for every voter who has cast a ballot in any of the past rounds, but new voters are entirely welcome — new voters will be added to the spreadsheet as their ballots are submitted. Also initially, there is a column for each of the holdover candidates; additional player columns from the new born-in-1918 group will be added to the spreadsheet as votes are cast for them.
Choose your three players from the lists below of eligible players. The twelve current holdovers are listed in order of the number of future rounds (including this one) through which they are assured eligibility, and alphabetically when the future eligibility number is the same. The new group of 1918 birth-year guys are listed below in order of the number of seasons each played in the majors, and alphabetically among players with the same number of seasons played.
There is one 1918-born player who makes the ballot despite having played in only nine major league seasons, based on a career Wins Above Replacement total over 20. That’s Whitey Kurowski, who overcame a childhood injury that badly damaged his right arm to last nine years in the majors, including several years as a star third basemen for the Cardinals during and after World War II, until the arm finally gave out.
Whitey Ford (eligibility guaranteed for 6 rounds)
Kenny Lofton (eligibility guaranteed for 6 rounds)
Craig Biggio (eligibility guaranteed for 3 rounds)
Ryne Sandberg (eligibility guaranteed for 3 rounds)
Minnie Minoso (eligibility guaranteed for 2 rounds)
Roberto Alomar (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Kevin Brown (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Roy Campanella (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Dennis Eckersley (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Harmon Killebrew (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Ralph Kiner (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Eddie Murray (eligibility guaranteed for this round only)
Everyday Players (born in 1918, ten or more seasons played in the major leagues or at least 20 WAR):
Pee Wee Reese