COG Round 85 Results: Cronin No Longer a Ronin

A “ronin” in Japanese tradition is a samurai warrior who is homeless, wandering, unaffiliated, as a result of having lost his sponsoring feudal lord. Winning this election (after falling just short in the previous round) brings Joe Cronin out of the cold and into the Circle of Greats, as the 85th inductee into the COG. More on Joe and the voting after the jump.

Rbat is baseball-reference.com’s statistic estimating the number of runs a hitter created with his hitting compared to the number of runs an average hitter in his league and with his home park would have created with a similar number of plate appearances.

Most Rbat by an American League Shortstop, 1901-2000
1. Joe Cronin 247.2
2. Luke Appling 234.0
3. Robin Yount 232.9
4. Cal Ripken, Jr. 219.8
5. Lou Boudreau 193.0
6. Alex Rodriguez 190.9

A-Rod passed Cronin on the AL shorstop Rbat list in 2001, with a 58 Rbat year (his first admitted PED-aided season). Derek Jeter passed Cronin in 2005. Cronin remains third all-time in Rbat among AL shortstops today, behind those two guys, with no active player on the horizon likely to challenge him for years to come.

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Offensive WAR, or oWAR, is baseball-reference’s statistic that seeks to add up all of a hitter’s contributions on the offensive side of play and then makes an adjustment for the difficulty of the defensive position he played while he was making those contributions on offense. Defensive WAR, or dWAR, similarly adds up all of a player’s contributions on the defensive side of the ball and again makes a positional adjustment to reflect the difficulty of the position played.

Joe Cronin over his career totaled, according to baseball-reference, 63 oWAR and 14 dWAR. He is one of only ten players in major league history with career numbers at least that high in both categories. Those ten guys include one outfielder, Willie Mays, two catchers, Johnny Bench and Carlton Fisk, a third baseman, Mike Schmidt, a second baseman, Lou Whitaker, and five shorstops, George Davis and Honus Wagner, contemporary rivals Luke Appling and Joe Cronin, and Cal Ripken.

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Most Doubles in the American League, Over The Thirty-Season Period From 1929 through 1958:
1. Joe Cronin 502
2. Charlie Gehringer 497
3. Ted Williams 495
4. Mickey Vernon 486
5. Luke Appling 440

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Cronin was personally and actively involved in every major league season from 1926 through 1973, a 48-year run without a gap. A player in the majors from age 19 to 38, manager from age 26 to 40, general manager from age 41 to 52 and president of the American League from age 53 to 66.

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–After Cronin lost in a runoff to long-time holdover Roberto Alomar last week, it looked for a while as if Joe might again fall just short of induction, in favor of another long-time holdover, Eddie Murray.   Murray was the leader until four of the final five ballots cast this round named Cronin but only one of them named Murray.

–The 28 votes Murray received was by far his largest total over the 66 rounds he has been eligible. Murray received 22 votes in his very first appearance, in Round 14, his birth year round of 1956, and he matched that 22 vote level recently, in Round 79. But that’s been his highest total till this week. He easily surpassed the 25% support threshold needed to gain an extra round of ballot eligibility going forward, bring his stash of guaranteed eligibility rounds to five. By the way, with 66 rounds of ballot eligibility in the books, Murray is creeping up on Craig Biggio’s Circle of Greats record of 69 eligible rounds.

–Roy Campanella also rode a wave of support this week to gain an extra round of eligibility, getting off “the bubble” where he has been sitting the last few rounds.

–With several fewer holdovers this week, and with only a single vote going to anyone from the 1904 birth year group, there were enough available votes to go around to not only give Cronin the win, Murray a record level of support and Campanella an extra round, but also to keep all the other holdovers above 10%. With Cronin inducted, the number of holdovers in the next round will decline further, from fifteen to fourteen.

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The full spreadsheet showing this round’s regular vote tally is here: COG 1904 Part 1 Vote Tally.

Three spreadsheets provide past vote totals for previous COG rounds, and related information about past COG voting. The newest such spreadsheet, which will collect votes from Round 83 on, is here: COG Vote Summary 3 . Spreadsheets showing results from previous COG rounds are here: COG Vote Summary/Rounds 1 through 37 and here: COG Vote Summary Rounds 38 through 82 .  In all three of these archive spreadsheets, raw vote totals for each past round appear on Sheet 1; click on the Sheet 2 tab to see the percentage vote totals for each past round.

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A spreadsheet listing the full membership to date of the Circle of Greats, along with some stats for each member, is here: Circle of Greats Membership . Hitters are on Sheet 1, pitchers are on Sheet 2.  You can also find that same link any time by clicking on “Circle of Greats” at the top of the High Heats Stats home page.

Another COG data spreadsheet showing each season a COG member played in the majors, along with the team he played for that season and his baseball-reference WAR (overall WAR for everyday players, pitching WAR for pitchers) for the season, is here:Circle of Greats Seasons

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Voomo Zanzibar
Voomo Zanzibar
7 years ago

A splendid selection.

Dr. Doom
Dr. Doom
7 years ago

Craig Biggio – 763 Roberto Alomar – 725 *Eddie Murray – 703 John Smoltz – 658 Kenny Lofton – 608 Ryne Sandberg – 607 Edgar Martinez – 507 Lou Whitaker – 493 *Harmon Killebrew – 460 Whitey Ford – 382 Bobby Grich – 376 Sandy Koufax – 375 Tony Gwynn – 346 Willie McCovey – 336 *Kevin Brown – 321 Juan Marichal – 268 Tom Glavine – 262 *Minnie Minoso – 246 *Roy Campanella – 245 Alan Trammell – 239 *Dennis Eckersley – 234 Mike Mussina – 233 Curt Schilling – 224 Nolan Ryan – 220 *Dave Winfield – 217… Read more »

Richard Chester
Richard Chester
7 years ago
Reply to  Dr. Doom

Good work, you only missed Jeff Kent. I did not need to use the PI, I had another method (although you can use the PI).

Dr. Doom
Dr. Doom
7 years ago

What was your method? I just looked at the all-time single season leaders in doubles on baseball-reference, which went down to 42 in a season. I copied them into a spreadsheet, sorted by name, and then I manually checked the guys who had multiples chronologically near to one another. I’m 100% certain there’s a better method than that – what did you do? Did you use a database of some sort?

Richard Chester
Richard Chester
7 years ago
Reply to  Dr. Doom

I retrieved a database from Fangraphs. I got a list of every player-season, sorted by doubles, eliminated all rows with doubles under 40, sorted by year, sorted by name. Then by using the =if(…) command I found the players with 4+ consecutive years of 40 + doubles. It’s difficult to explain in words how I achieved the last step.

Dr. Doom
Dr. Doom
7 years ago

I see! I didn’t even THINK of using Fangraphs! Thanks for the idea!

Richard Chester
Richard Chester
7 years ago

@6

When you sort do it by player ID, not by name. Otherwise players with a shared name will show up as one person.

Hartvig
Hartvig
7 years ago
Reply to  Dr. Doom

Just as it would have been with Alomar if Murray fails to gain admittance this round it’s possible that he will overtake Biggio before he finally does. 1903 Gehrig, Gehringer, Waner, Hubbell, Cochrane plus 3 other HOFer’s. 1902 Simmons + 1 HOFer 1901 (2)- only Heinie Manush 1900 Grove, Lyons, Hartnett, Goslin + 2 other HOFer’s 1899 Combs & Hoyt 1898(2) Terry, Sewell, Traynor, Cuyler 1897 Frisch 1896 Hornsby 1895(2) some guy named Ruth plus High Pockets Kelly 1894 Heilmann +1 HOFer 1893 Sisler +3HOFers 1892(2) Ray Schalk 1891 Vance + 3 HOFers 1890 2 HOFers 1889 (2) Coveleski 8… Read more »

bells
bells
7 years ago
Reply to  Hartvig

whoa, when you put it like that, we’ve got a lot coming up. Might be tough for these holdovers. It gets a little easier once we get to 1888 and the few years before that, though, right?

~looks at 1888, 87, 86~

ohhhhhh…

Dr. Doom
Dr. Doom
7 years ago
Reply to  bells

On the bright side, there isn’t a single 60-WAR player from 1882-1885, so we’ve got that going for us…

Hartvig
Hartvig
7 years ago
Reply to  bells

Just so people know: 1888- Speaker, Faber, Wheat 1887- Johnson, Alexander, Collins + 1HOFer + Shoeless Joe 1886-(2)- Cobb, Baker+ 1 HOFer As DD has mentioned between 85 and 82 the strongest candidates are probably Sherry Magee, Jack Quinn or Eddie (Black Sox) Cicotte. In 1881- Ed Walsh- who should be interesting- kind of an early Koufax 1880- Mathewson, Crawford + Addie Joss for our fans of peak performance. 1879 Noodles Hahn- another bright, flaming star + 1 HOFer 1878- no one stands out 1877- same as 78 1876- Vic Willis might be the strongest candidate but also Three Finger… Read more »