Circle of Greats 1974 Balloting Part 2

This post is for voting and discussion in the 130th round of balloting for the Circle of Greats (COG).  This is the second of four rounds of balloting adding to the list of candidates eligible to receive your votes those players born in 1974. Rules and lists are after the jump.

The new group of 1974-born players, in order to join the eligible list, must, as usual, 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). This second group of 1974-born candidates, comprising those with D-L surnames, joins the eligible holdovers from previous rounds to comprise the full list of players eligible to appear on your ballots.

In addition to voting for COG election among players on the main ballot, there will be also be voting for elevation to the main ballot among players on the secondary ballot. For both ballots, which may be voted at the same time or in separate posts, voters must include three and only three eligible players. For the main ballot election, the one player who appears on the most ballots cast in the round is inducted into the Circle of Greats, while for the secondary ballot election, the one player appearing on the most ballots cast is elevated to the main ballot for the next COG election round. In the case of ties, a runoff election round will be held for COG election, while a tie-breaking process will be followed to determine the secondary ballot winner.

Players who fail to win either ballot 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. One additional round of eligibility is earned by any player who appears on at least 10% of the ballots cast or, for the main ballot only, any player finishing in the top 9 (including ties) in ballot appearances. Holdover candidates on the main ballot who exhaust their eligibility will drop to the secondary ballot for the next COG election round, as will first time main ballot candidates who attract one or more votes but do not earn additional main ballot eligibility. Secondary ballot candidates who exhaust their eligibility will drop from that ballot, but will become eligible for possible reinstatement in a future Redemption round election.

All voting for this round closes at 11:59 PM EST Sunday, February 10th, while changes to previously cast ballots are allowed until 11:59 PM EST Friday, February 8th.

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 1974 Part 2 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-1974 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 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 1974 birth-year players 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.

Holdovers:

MAIN BALLOTELIGIBILITYSECONDARY BALLOTELIGIBILITY
Kevin Brown12 roundsWillie Randolph6 rounds
Luis Tiant9 roundsTed Lyons
5 rounds
Manny Ramirez6 roundsRick Reuschel
5 rounds
Dick Allen5 roundsTodd Helton
4 rounds
Bill Dahlen5 roundsAndy Pettitte
2 rounds
Graig Nettles3 rounds Bobby Abreu
this round ONLY
Bobby Wallace
3 rounds
Richie Ashburn
this round ONLY
Ken Boyer
this round ONLY
Andre Dawsonthis round ONLY
Ted Simmons
this round ONLY
Don Sutton
this round ONLY

Everyday Players (born in 1974, ten or more seasons played in the major leagues or at least 20 WAR, D-L surname):
Derek Jeter
Jason Kendall
Jermaine Dye
Darin Erstad
Mike Lowell
Jason LaRue
Geoff Jenkins
Robert Fick

Pitchers (born in 1974, ten or more seasons played in the major leagues or at least 20 WAR, D-L surname):
R.A. Dickey
Braden Looper
Mark Hendrickson
Ray King

As is our custom with first time candidates, here is a factoid and related quiz question on each of the new players on the ballot.

  1. Derek Jeter led his league with 216 hits at age 38 in 2012. Who is the only older player with a league-leading 200 hit season? (Paul Molitor, 1996)
  2. R.A. Dickey’s 442.2 IP before his age 35 season are the fewest for any pitcher with a 2000 IP career. Whose record did Dickey break? (Rip Sewell)
  3. Jason Kendall recorded 13 seasons with 125 games caught, the most ever. Whose record did Kendall break? (Bob Boone)
  4. Darin Erstad’s 240 hits in 2000 are 63 more than his next best total of 177 two years later. Which player with a 200 hit season since 1901 has the largest gap between his top two hit seasons? (Chick Fullis)
  5. Jermaine Dye is one of 10 retired players since 1901 with 3500-4000 PA both before their age 30 season and aged 30 or older. Which one of those players recorded less oWAR than Dye in both of those career halves? (Terry Pendleton)
  6. Mike Lowell played over 500 games at 3B for Boston after joining the Red Sox at age 32. Which player has the most 3B games for Boston after age 30? (Jimmy Collins)
  7. Jason LaRue caught over 800 games in the NL and never recorded a qualified season. Who was the first catcher to do this? (Jerry Grote)
  8. Braden Looper is one of 18 pitchers with a 600 game career including 500 relief appearances and 90 starts, but is the only one to record all of those starts after age 30. Before Looper, which of those pitchers had recorded the most starts after age 30? (Rick Honeycutt)
  9. Geoff Jenkins had his best season in 2000 at age 25, batting .300 with 300 total bases and 100 runs scored, to join Paul Molitor (and later Ryan Braun) as the youngest Brewers to record such a season. Who is the oldest Brewer to post these totals? (Paul Molitor, 1991)
  10. Mark Hendrickson‘s 5.90 ERA for the Devil Rays in 2005 was then the highest of the post-war era in a qualified full-length season with BB/9 under 2.5. Which pitcher posted the highest such ERA of the 20th century? (Sloppy Thurston, 1925)
  11. Ray King posted five consecutive 40 IP seasons (2001-05) with 120 ERA+, SO/BB under 2.5 and nary a start, tying John Franco (1984-88) for the longest such streak of seasons by an NL pitcher. Which two pitchers share the AL record (also 5 seasons), and which two pitchers have longer streaks pitching in both leagues? (AL Leaders: Steve Mingori 1974-78, Gregg Olson 1989-93; MLB Leaders: Ted Abernathy 1967-72, Brad Ziegler 2008-13)
  12. Robert Fick is one of three players since 1901 to play 150 games at catcher, first base and right field. Who are the other two? (Keith Moreland, Ed Kirkpatrick)

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228 Comments on "Circle of Greats 1974 Balloting Part 2"

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Dr. Doom
Guest

3. Johnny Bench had 10… that it?
9. Yay! A Brewers question! I’m going with Aramis Ramirez at age 34 in 2012.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Here are charts for player stats this round. I’ve added, for position players, fWAR. I have not done so for pitchers because of my longstanding belief that FanGraphs pitcher fWAR is not a meaningful statistic (as discussed last string — Doom pointed out that using fWAR, Sutton and Brown far outpace Tiant among pitchers on the primary ballot). For pitchers, the parenthetical figure represents Their pitching WAR (adopting nsb’s ‘pWAR’) plus oWAR and dWAR, for ‘Total bWAR’. Other points: WAR/Yr. includes only those seasons with 10 GS or 100 IP for starters, 20G for relievers, and 50G for position players.… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

I inadvertently left Dawson off my charts (and since no one has noticed, maybe no one’s looking anyway). Dawson has moved to the Primary Ballot.

WAR(fWAR)….Pk5……Top5……WAR/G…WAR/Yr……OPS+…Career length
64.4 (59,5)……32.4……33.7……0.025……3.4 (19)……119………1.5………..Dawson

mosc
Guest

Defense + Offense, Dawson had a 4-year peak like few in the game ever have.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
After posting my usual chart, in which I left out fWAR ratings for pitchers because I feel they are unreliable, I thought it might be a good idea to post a broader range of WAR calculations using B-R (bWAR), The Baseball Gauge (gWAR), FanGraphs (fWAR), and Baseball Prospectus (WARP). (I tackled only the Primary Ballot candidates here.) In general, for all players, B-R and The Baseball Gauge align pretty closely, the major exception being Jeter, whom the Gauge clobbers because of his poor fielding. The Gauge is also considerably more enthusiastic about Dahlen, whose good fielding seems to be a… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

I left Dawson off this chart too.

bWAR…gWAR….fWAR….WARP
64.8 ……59.3……59.5 …..56.9……Dawson

Mike L
Guest

1. Paul Molitor had LL 225 hits in 1996, his age 39 season. He also went to his left very well when he was at first base.

Richard Chester
Guest

Question #4: Chick Fullis, 200 H in 1933, 99 H in 1931. Don’t think anyone could guess that one.

Richard Chester
Guest

Others with a larger gap than Erstad:
Dick Wakefield
Bill Lamar
Johnny Hodapp
Hank Leiber
Dick Burrus

no statistician but
Guest
I’m not a big Jeter fan, but I can’t see turning the spotlight on his weak defense. Given that he played in a high run-scoring environment, he finished with 1923 runs scored—11th all-time—an average of 113 per 162 games, with 13 seasons in excess of 100, a 14th at 99, and a 15th with 87 in 119 games. He’d have to give back an enormous chunk of runs in the field to make a significant dent in that huge pile. Did he? His Rtot is -186 or -10/yr. A dent, yeah. Significant? A plus of 103 runs per season suggests… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I think we need to use consistent metrics if we’re going to smoosh batting and fielding together. Yes, Jeter has the worst Rfield at a career -243, but that figure pertains to the number of runs saved/allowed compared to all fielders. Because Jeter was fielding a difficult position, he gets 144 of those runs back in his position adjustment, so his net fielding as a shortstop would be -99 runs saved. On the other side of the ledger is his offensive Rbat — not {Runs + RBI – HR}, which does not weight for his role in producing each of… Read more »
Richard Chester
Guest

Question #7: Jerry Grote

Richard Chester
Guest

Question #5: Terry Pendleton

koma
Guest

Derek Jeter
Manny Ramirez
Andy Pettitte

Q2. Hoyt Wilhelm had 666.2 IP before his age 35 season
Q5. Terry Pendleton 5.2 oWAR before 30 and 11.4 after
Q6. Frank Malzone with 864 games at 3B
Q8. hmm, there are 85 pitchers with 90+starts and 600+games according to BR
Q10. Sloppy Thurston with 5.95 in 1925 qualified for ERA title (Doug Drabek with 7.29 qualified for W-L% title in 1998)
Q12. Keith Moreland and Ed Kirkpatrick

Richard Chester
Guest

Q6 answer should be JImmie Collins with 741 games after age 30. Malzone holds the record for after age 29.

koma
Guest

Oh, after age 30 means from age 31 season on…. sure:-/

Dr. Doom
Guest

So, koma, no one told you this for some reason, but your ballot is illegal. Andy Pettitte is on the “Secondary Ballot” and is not eligible for election this round.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Yeah, I just spotted this 2 days after Doom. . . . How do we get koma’s attention?

Doug
Guest

I’ll let him know.

koma
Guest

ok i didn’t read the instructions very carefully :-/

so there is my vote again
main ballot:
Manny Ramirez
Derek Jeter
R.A. Dickey
secondary ballot:
Todd Helton
Andy Pettitte
Bobby Abreu

thanks for informing me via mail:-)

Bruce Gilbert
Guest

Don Sutton, Bill Dahlen and Ted Simmons from the main ballot. Ted Lyons, Rick Reuschel and Andy Pettite from the secondary ballot.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Following Michael’s instructions, here is a corrected comparison of B-R oWAR (minus positional adjustment) and B-G Off: OPS+/PA…..B-R oWAR….B-G Off….B-G +/- 156/7315……..75.0…………76.7………+1.7 (+2%)……Allen 111/9736……..58.5…………52.9………+5.6 (+10%)….Ashburn 116/8272……..52.1…………46.8………-5.3 (-10%)……Boyer 110/10411……46.9…………47.1………+0.2 (+0%)……Dahlen 119/10769……63.2…………66.1………+2.9 (+5%)……Dawson 115/12602……80.7…………68.7………-12.0 (-15%)….Jeter 110/10228……46.6…………52.4………+5.8 (+12%)….Nettles 154/9774……..91.0…………88.0………-3.0 (-3%)……..Ramirez 118/9685……..45.2…………49.8………+4.6 (+10%)….Simmons 105/9617……..41.5…………38.5………-3.0 (-7%)……..Wallace Jeter has the largest gap between oWAR and Off in both absolute and percentage terms, but Nettles’ gap is similar in scale, though in the other direction, with Ashburn and Simmons not far behind. I poked around a bit and found these other examples: OPS+/PA…..B-R oWAR….B-G Off….B-G +/- 104/11782…..39.4……….50.4……….+11.0 (+28%)..Brooks Robinson 116/9057…….56.0……….49.8……….-6.2 (-11%)……Barry Larkin 109/9175…….44.8……….40.0……… -4.8 (-11%)……Eddie Yost 104/10917…..58.3……….51.0……..… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

I should have posted this as a reply above — it relates to a discussion higher in the strong concerning Jeter’s low gWAR number, and Michael Sullivan’s note that my first effort at this comparison was flawed.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Compounding mis-posting with a typo (“string”) — I’m clearly on a role.

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Kendall has the 5th most games at Catcher all-time. He did that in 15 years.

The next retired player on the list with only 15 years is Bill Freehan, in 25th place.

If Yadi Molina stays on the field, he will pass Kendall in 2020.
The only other active Catcher who can conceivably approach those numbers is Salvador Perez, who is 28 and has 874 games in the squat.

mosc
Guest
Kendall always puzzled me. He’s a good bit better than Bob Boone, Tony Pena, and a lot of other similar guys with long catching careers. Still, other than durability I don’t think he holds up to Joe Mauer. That said, Kendall caught WELL MORE THAN TWICE as many innings as Mauer. It’s an absurdly large and historic number. Maybe if we valued replacement level catching innings higher, Kendall might look a lot better? Maybe we should. I can’t see a Bob Boone or Tony Pena COG case (though I have some memory of Pena getting a vote?) Still, Simmons caught… Read more »
Voomo Zanzibar
Guest
Jeter is 6th all-time in Hits with 3465. He did that in 20 years. The next player on the list with ‘only’ 20 years is Paul Waner, in 18th place. Anybody active going to catch Jeter? Beltre just retired. Ichiro needs 400. But he is 44 years old. Albert needs 400. 3 years on his contract. Miguel Cabrera needs 800. 5 years on his contract. Cano needs 1000. 5 years on his contract. Nick Markakis needs 1200. If he stays as steady as he’s been all to way to age 40 he’ll be right at 3000. Victor Martinez needs 1300.… Read more »
Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Vote:

Kevin Brown
Graig Nettles
Ted Simmons

Bobby Abreu
Ted Lyons
Willie Randolph
_________________

I hope that we do not vote Jeter in this week.
Or next.
Or the week after.

He has everything. He can wait on this accolade.
Besides, if we wait till next year we can argue over Derek vs his buddy Alex.
And Rolen and Vlad.

Dr. Doom
Guest
Main: Kevin Brown Derek Jeter Dick Allen Secondary: Rick Reuschel Todd Helton Bobby Abreu -Derek Jeter is definitely deserving, but I’m glad to see he won’t be our first unanimous inductee. 🙂 -I think of Abreu as better than most of the secondary ballot, but I think he’s around the #140-150 range among eligible players. Unfortunately for him, we’re only on (I think) #130 in the COG, and will only get to 132 by the end of this year. -Kevin Brown is the most statistically-qualified player on the ballot, in my opinion. I will keep voting for him, but I’ll… Read more »
Mike L
Guest
A fair amount of Jeter-bashing going on, some of which I think is valid, others less so. No question in my mind that Jeter played shortstop for a lot longer than he would have on a different team, and certainly more than his skills justified. But Jeter also leaves us with an interesting question–what do you do with a franchise icon who you don’t want to go to a different team for clubhouse and marketing reasons? There will be fewer and fewer of these players as time goes on, but there still will be some. The Yankees made hard choices… Read more »
opal611
Guest

For the Secondary Ballot, I’m voting for:
-Todd Helton
-Willie Randolph
-Bobby Abreu

Thanks!

mosc
Guest

.287/.386/.469/.855 with 284 home runs in 9224 PA
That’s Todd Helton on the road x2
.297/.376/.478/.855 with 258 home runs in 8160 PA
That’s Will Clark on the road x2

opal611
Guest

For the 1974 Part 2 election, I’m voting for:

-Manny Ramirez
-Don Sutton
-Andre Dawson

Other top candidates I considered highly (and/or will consider in future rounds):
-Jeter
-Tiant
-Brown
-Boyer
-Ashburn
-Nettles
-Allen
-Wallace
-Dahlen

Thanks!

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
What I appreciate most about the CoG is that it provides occasion for detailed arguments, frequently based on combinations of statistical and more global data, about individual players, different eras, and the way we prioritize types of value (e.g., peak vs. sustained). Sometimes I wonder how many voters read those long discussions, but I very much support anyone who wants to participate having the chance to do so on their own terms. In casting his vote, Doom made some comments about Kevin Brown that set me thinking. He noted that in his view, Brown is the most statistically qualified candidate,… Read more »
no statistician but
Guest
Since I’m going to be gone for a few days, I guess I should comment now and tomorrow re this round of voting. First shot: The Jeter hostility thing puzzles me. The guy’s numbers aren’t just those of an accumulator. Hits—6th of all time. You have to go down to the 28th spot to find an eligible player who isn’t in the COG. Runs scored 11th, and you have to go down to the 32nd spot to find an eligible player who isn in the COG. Offensive WAR 20th, and again the 32nd on the list is the first eligible… Read more »
Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

nsb,

Two things.
1. Why were you posting that during the 4th quarter of the superbowl?
2. Unless Im not seeing something, nobody has been hostile towards Jeter.
There’s been a discussion of different approaches to data analysis, and the accuracy of fielding metrics.

no statistician but
Guest

Actually, Voomo, your post above sounded kinda hostile.

I don’t watch television. No cable hook-up, no dish, no desire to view, not even sporting events since commercials and instant replay have taken over. I watched the last half of the last game of the 1998 NBA championship. My last baseball game was Jack Morris’s career game in the 1991 Series.

Pats vs Rams? Who cares?

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Nope, not hostile.
I’m a Yankees fan.
And literally a professional comedian. Besides which, this is the last place I’d come to be hostile.

But I was serious that I’d find it more interesting to discuss Jeter next year then see him sail in this week.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
No hostility from Voomo, but for some of us it must be a generational thing. I pay a bundle for cable, but it’s not for me. Unlike nsb, I do watch baseball on TV: usually about three innings a year towards the end of the Series (last year it was a half inning). It’s about all I can handle. (And it’s the only TV I watch, other than talking heads I see or hear as I walk past.) I must have watched more baseball in the recent past, because I was watching in 2001 when I saw “The Flip” —… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest

Was something special going on during the 4th quarter of the superbowl? My facebook feed all said it was boring AF, and I think almost all football is boring AF, so…

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
nsb, I think that when you and Mike L speak of hostility towards Jeter and Jeter-bashing on this string, you’re thinking of me, since I posted negative stuff about him above. All the good things you write about Jeter are true, and, as I mentioned at the outset, while you were not a Jeter fan, I’m someone who was. Basically, I find Jeter-revisionism really interesting. Here’s a no-contest Hall of Famer about whom a second, less heroic story has emerged. A consistently fine hitter over many, many years with an attractive profile of high productivity and some moderate power, but,… Read more »
Doug
Guest

There are some previous HHS posts on Jeter that may be of interest to readers. You can find them from the Search tab at the top of your screen. Type “Derek Jeter” in the text box and click Search.

Michael Sullivan
Guest

Given how weak our secondary ballot is, and how many reasonable candidates (comparable HR and WAR to our primary ballot candidates) are not on either ballot, I wish we’d had a redemption round before these votes, and would like to request that we have one before the last two rather than waiting until all four votes are over this year.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Second.

bells
Guest

I agree with that notion.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I thought I’d make a comment pertaining to Ashburn, since I was just deploring the recent lack of them. A lot of us consider a strong peak (typically a 5-year peak) as one important measure of a player’s excellence. If a top player was reliably in top form for the heart of his career he possessed a special type of value, one you could build a team around. Dick Allen is often cited as a player’s whose short career has to be considered in light of his great peak. Here are the figures I posted for Allen and Ashburn near… Read more »
Richard Chester
Guest

It can be pointed out that Ashburn led all NL CF with putouts 9 times from 1949-1958, losing out only to Willie Mays. He is the only ML CF to record 500+ putouts in a season more than once (he did it twice) and only 1 of 4 to do it at least once.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

And those were 154-game seasons. (After your post, Richard, I looked up his fielding record: Ashburn also had seasons of 499 and 498 CF PO.)

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

How much of Ashburn’s high put out totals had to do with his home park having these dimensions?:

http://www.andrewclem.com/Baseball/ShibePark.html#diag

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Voomo, It was a good pitcher’s park (though Robin Roberts seems to have learned how to shorten its fences), but there were plenty of others in that era that were as spacious in center field: Forbes Field, Yankee Stadium, the Polo Grounds, Griffith Stadium, Memorial Stadium in Baltimore . . . That little angle out to 447′-468′ makes CF at Shibe sound huge, but it cuts back sharply to normal CF dimensions, and its long foul lines don’t affect CF. Mays played at the Polo Grounds (uniformly out to 450′ in Center, with its nook at 483′); Mantle played in… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest

I don’t think there’s really much evidence that Roberts shortened the fences. He led his league in HR allowed 5 times in 7 years, and had four other seasons over 30. He’s still second in career HR allowed (to Jamie Moyer), in spite of playing his entire career in a very low HR era. Could he have given up more? Surely; Roberts was a good pitcher who limited HR… but still gave up more than anyone else ever had.

Paul E
Guest

Doom, Bob (epm)
I believe the narrative was something like “Roberts threw awefully hard with great control, limited BB’s but always challenged hitters in the strike zone” . It sure worked for him as that 6-year stretch from 1950-1955 was good for ~2,000 innings, 138 wins and a 135 ERA+. But, yeah, he gave up homers as he never threw at batters and was always in the strike zone

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Not sure I follow, Doom, especially your closing Q&A. I just meant that Roberts gave up a lot of HR in a pitcher’s park, certainly not that he wasn’t a great pitcher. He was terrific.

Richard Chester
Guest

I checked Ashburn’s fielding splits for 1951, his season of 532 PO. On the road he had 251 PO while facing 2549 batters, a rate of .0985. At home he had 281 PO while facing 2878 batters, a rate of of .0976, just a little less than on the road.

no statistician but
Guest
It’s late and I shouldn’t do this until tomorrow, but— Richie Ashburn is one of my favorites, partly, I’m sure because, as I’ve mentioned a couple of times here, I once had the experience of meeting him in a baseball context while I was a teen and he was still playing. He was also, if Bill James is to be believed, an admirable person all his life. Strange. I remember rooting for him to beat out Willie Mays for the 1958 NL batting championship, which he did, .350 to .347, back in the naive days when the batting championship was… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

‘How do you compare a speedy singles-hitting, high batting average leadoff man with no power but exceptional fielding prowess to a 40-HR a year man with lead feet and an iron glove? WAR says it can be done, and so we all go along, but ”
Smart comment, NSB. And gets to the core issue with WAR that makes some people uncomfortable. It sometimes comes down to “I know what you think you see….but the numbers prove you wrong”

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
WAR is great when it comes to a ballpark view of classes of players. It really helps clarify, for example, how Ripkin and Jeter belong to different strata of stardom. With Ashburn and Allen, I think it tells us that despite their categorical differences, Allen and Ashburn are roughly comparable in terms of how much they would help a team if all their seasons were blended together (it’s kind of nice that B-R and FanGraphs flip their WAR numbers). I see WAR as opening up the comparative conversation, not closing it down. It licenses us to explore comparisons between these… Read more »
Mike L
Guest

I’m not looking to drag down WAR, I just think it shouldn’t be the beginning or end of any discussion, and clearly it isn’t in this group. As to the comparative conversation, I think WAR works better as you indicate–a ballpark view of classes of players. Jeter finished with 72.4 WAR, Thome finished with 72.9. I don’t know what to make of that, besides noting that Thome at shortstop would be a sight to behold.

Dr. Doom
Guest
“How do you compare a speedy singles-hitting, high batting average leadoff man with no power but exceptional fielding prowess to a 40-HR a year man with lead feet and an iron glove? WAR says it can be done, and so we all go along, but . . ..” I think the more important question is, “How do you NOT compare them?” Comparing them is necessary; players receive salaries; someone makes the team, and someone gets cut; someone starts the All-Star game, and someone else is a reserve. What WAR does is give us a framework for trying to reason those… Read more »
Bruce Gilbert
Guest

A contemporary of Ashburn, Bob Friend, passed away yesterday at 88. A four-time All-Star, he has, arguably, the most misleading Won-Lost record of any starting pitcher in the post World War II era: 197-230. Grew up in West Lafayette, went to Purdue for awhile, a member of the 1960 WC Pirates, and won 22 games one year. I always admired him.

no statistician but
Guest
Good catch, Bruce. Why not join in more often. As for Bob Friend, he was a workhorse starter for the Pirates in the dark early to mid-1950’s, as was Vern Law, a year older. Together they rode out that decade with several good seasons, their reward being the 1960 championship team. Opposites in a way. Law was injured often, Friend never. Law lost two years to the military. Friend, except for his disastrous 1959 season, was a steady performer, while Law was up and down. The most telling thing, unfortunately, was that Friend’s statistical record against winning teams was .397,… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
Bob Friend, actual W-L: 197-230 Bob Friend, ERA+/IP estimated W-L: 214-187 If you think that even Friend’s ERA is unfair, because his fielders were, after all, the Pirates, I’d suggest you look at what happens if you use his FIP: Bob Friend, FIP+/IP estimated W-L: 227-174 Rather than 33 games below .500, this would peg him as 53 games ABOVE .500, for a change of 86 games! That’s the most of any pitcher. Even using ERA+, I believe he’s still number one (+60) for change relative to a .500 record. He got the shaft as much as Blyleven, though he… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
For those of us who followed Friend when he was active the injustice of his W-L record was no secret. He paid a statistical price for being an early member of one of the first true rebuilding efforts: Branch Rickey’s strategy worked out, but it took too long for Friend’s record ever to be set right. His flops in the ’60 Series, when the lowly Pirates showed how to bring Goliath down, were terribly painful to watch — Goliath may have fallen, but not before pulverizing Friend twice (well, once was just a knock-out). Thanks for letting us know of… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Why did Ashburn’s career end when his skills were still strong? It was Ashburn’s decision, and for an unusual reason. Playinghis last season for Casey Stengel’s fledgling Mets, Ashburn was appalled by what he saw: management and manager aiming at building the franchise’s financial stability by playing the game for laughs. He saw the older Stengel as a clown who was no longer interested in managing, and George Weiss & Co. as cynical business people, no longer interested in their team prevailing on the field. Ashburn was the class of the team and the way he exited shows it. There’s… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
So spurred by the discussion here and your and Bob’s posts, I was poking around Ashburn’s stats today, and one thing stood way out — 30.8 runs DP! Now there’s lots of speedy smart hitters with around 10 rDP, but 30, that’s something else! especially from a guy with only 9 rBase (probably because all those CS really do hurt him I suspect). That got me interested, so I did a PI search I haven’t ever done before, to see who has the most rDP. I was expecting Ashburn to rank highly, but 30.8 actually comes in a bit lower… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Michael, This is very intriguing, but I’m having some trouble working through it. Your description of the basis for Rdp is not at all what I had taken the stat to be about: rDP looks *only* at what happened in potential double play situations — runner on first, 0 or 1 out, and you hit an infield ground ball that was not scored a hit. That description seems to me to relate to Rbaser, since it has to do with base running skills, not with proclivity to hit into the double play. Could you provide a link to the page… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
I pulled what I was taking from this page: https://www.baseball-reference.com/about/war_explained_position.shtml Here’s a quote from the relevant section: “GIDP opportunities are any infield ground ball with a runner on first, less than two outs and at least one out is recorded on the play. The play must not be scored a hit as well. “The difference in runs scored between a “double play” and a “double play avoided” is, on average, .44 runs, but it can vary by the run environment of the league. The league GIDP rate is then calculated and:” R_gidp = .44 × ( GIDP_OPPS_player * GIDP_RATE_lg –… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Thanks for the link, Michael. It certainly is as you described it. The GIDP figure appears among the Advanced Stats that are added when you hit the “Finders and Advanced Stats” tab on the band just below each player’s photo & facts block. Scroll down to the “Situational Batting” table and there’s a section titled GIDP. It derives DP% by dividing DPs, defined as “Two or more outs via force out on a ground ball” by DPopp, defined as “Runner on first with less than two outs.” (I was wrong about “League Average” — the comparative figure given is an… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
Well it’s clear what they are trying to do with rDP, which is to account for the extra negative of double plays since rBat does not consider double plays. I don’t think we should throw out the stat, just that it doesn’t work quite the way I thought, or fit quite as accurately for a measure of total value as I thought. It’s just a weak point in WAR that, at some point, a better, more complicated calculation may clear up. It’s possible that Forman and others are already aware of the problem, and either see it as not worth… Read more »
Richard Chester
Guest
Seasonal data on BR indicates that the Yankees had 1222 DP opportunities in 2018. They hit into 107 DP for a %DP ratio of .088. I then ran the BR Event Finder for the Yankees in 2018 and set in for PA, less than 2 outs, runner(s) on first, first and second, first and third and bases loaded. It indicated 1222 such PA. So it looks like %DP is calculated for all such PA, not just ground ball PA. Here’ how rDP can be confusing. In 1997 Craig Biggio hit into 0 DP in 744 PA and had a rDP… Read more »
Richard Chester
Guest

It looks like this is how the rDP for Biggio and Williams were calculated in 1997.

Per BR this is the formula for rDP:

R_gidp = .44 × ( GIDP_OPPS_player * GIDP_RATE_lg – GIDP_player)

By using the BR event finder I found that the ML total number of DP opportunities was 7503 and the number of those opportunities that ended up in DPs was 3434. The league average was 3434/7503 = .458.

Biggio’s rDP = (.44)*((11*.458)-0)= 2.22

Williams’ rDP = (.44)*((45*.458)-10)) = 4.67

kds
Guest

B-R told me that the run value for a fly ball out was very much the same as for a ground ball pit that is not a double play. So the way B-R handle’s this seems correct to me.

no statistician but
Guest
No to go comparison crazy, but here are the closest COG member comps I see to the current position player candidates of note—with brief commentary: Dick Allen: Harmon Killebrew and Johnny Mize Richie Ashburn: Kenny Lofton Andre Dawson: Dave Winfield Graig Nettles: Brooks Robinson Ted Simmons: Mike Piazza Manny Ramirez: Ted Williams or Harry Heilmann Ken Boyer: Ron Santo Bill Dahlen: George Davis Bobby Wallace: Pee Wee Reese Derek Jeter: Robin Yount and Barry Larkin The biggest mismatch here, in my opinion, is the Simmons/Piazza one, not because Ted Williams doesn’t leave Manny in the dust, but because Piazza leaves… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
This is really great, nsb. I would say Jeter-Yount is a pretty good comparison. Larkin is a tough comp, because he was just hurt so much. Elite when healthy, but never healthy enough. Jeter is an easy “yes” for me – not as easy as Yount, the Brewer I was brought up with as a legend, but an easy “yes” nonetheless. Nettles and Robinson is a spot-on comparison. You point out that the OPS+ is nothing to brag about… but, then, either is Robinson’s, and people consider him an easy HOF player, and is not a COGer whose presence therein… Read more »
Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Yount is a fascinating comparison for Jeter, in that the criticism of Jeter is that he should’ve been moved off of shortstop in his mid-thirties.

In 2005, as Bernie was being put out to pasture, had Derek been moved to centerfield and played capably, his hindsight analysis would be more positive.

Instead they went and got unfrozen caveman Damon.

Dr. Doom
Guest
I think for a lot of us, the time to move Jeter would’ve been 2004, with the acquisition of A-Rod, when they could’ve moved Jeter to 3B, a position where his arm (which was fine) would still have been useful, but his range (ever the problem) wouldn’t have hurt the Yanks as much. A-Rod, the better defender, would’ve been more helpful at short. It seemed obvious at the time, and I think it would’ve enhanced Jeter’s reputation as The Captain Who Switched Positions, to Do What Was Best for the Team. Instead, he looked petulant, unwilling to move for a… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
Agreed, I was *shocked* that Jeter didn’t move to third or outfield when they traded for Arod. Although looking back, Arod, while he made some spectacular and memorable plays, was basically just a little above average in the field (for a shortstop) even in his prime. Of the three great shortstops who debuted in the mid 90s, Nomar was clearly the superior fielder until injuries got the better of him. Although none were the equal in the field of their forerunners (Trammel, Smith and Ripken). Nomar might have seen similar career dWAR to Trammel if not for the injury but… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
Agree on Williams and Manny. Also, while Manny was a historically poor fielder, Williams was basically average for a corner for most of his career, and put up -44 rfield in his last 3 seasons to bring his total to -32. Also, Manny played 303 games as a DH, which hurts his rPos, but kept him from putting up even more negative rField, or being out of the lineup completely. Yeah, I don’t think they are similar at all. And I’d agree with you that if you discount his stats for PEDs more than the teeniest amount, he’s out, and… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
I think when comparing ‘hitters’, the run environment simulator on the b-ref “advanced batting’ stats tab works well for the netralized sample setting (4.25 R/G / 162 G season). By the same token this merely mimics OPS+ but Allen fares well; .309 .382 .551 130 RC/162G 1,456 RC/7,818 PAs DiMaggio .305 .389 .549 116 RC/162G 1,421 RC/7,633 PAs Mize .302 .390 .552 129 RC/162G 1,402 RC/7,476 PAs Allen Somewhat punitive for Mize since he did a lot of pinch hitting which lowers his RC/162G. But, relatively similar except that DiMaggio could actually play a significant defensive position. But, Allen doesn’t… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

A lot to respond to — Doom’s right: this is great, and a perfect way to frame CoG discussion.

For now I just want to note that on the Boyer/Santo comparison, although Santo has 12% more oWAR than Boyer, he compiled that in 14% more PA. Santo is up by 9 in OPS+, and I think that’s the scale of hitting difference: in Santo’s favor, but more modestly so.

no statistician but
Guest

Here’s a slew of interesting facts on Santo and Boyer in 1964:

WAR: Santo 8.9, Boyer 6.1
BA: Santo .313, Boyer ,295
OBP: Santo .398(led league); Boyer .365
SLG: Santo .564; Boyer .489
OPS+: Santo 164; Boyer 130
Hits Santo 185; Boyer 185
Doubles: Santo 33; Boyer 30
Triples: Santo 13(led league); Boyer 10
HR: Santo 30; Boyer 24
RBI: Santo 114; Boyer 119(led league)
BB: Santo 86(led league); Boyer 70
MVP: Santo 59(8th); Boyer 243(1st)

As to peak:

Santo’s WAR for seven consecutive years: 6.7, 8.9, 7.7, 8.9, 9.8, 6.4, 5.5
Boyer’s WAR for seven consecutive years: 6.0, 7.4, 6.8, 8.0, 5.6, 5.2, 6.1

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Indeed, nsb. Santo compiled 12% more WAR (as well as 12% more oWAR) than Boyer overall. He did it with 14% more PAs, which means their rates were about the same, though Santo delivered the same level of goods in more games. Santo’s peak, as you illustrate, was also higher, though Boyer has a little edge in non-peak years. In 1964, Santo fell victim to the MVP disease that makes voters think a player’s more valuable if his team is at the top of the standings than at the bottom. He placed 8th in the MVP vote, just as his… Read more »
Doug
Guest

nsb,

Just thought I’d mention that a new poster (Doug Bath) has identified some interesting players that we missed in your series about players whose careers were most impacted by war service.

Richard Chester
Guest

Looks like nobody is interested in question 11 so here is what I came up with. The 2 ALers are Gregg Olson and Steve Mingori. The 2 pitchers for both leagues are Brad Ziegler and Ted Abernathy, 6 seasons.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
In his excellent set of comparisons between our current CoG candidates and elected CoG members, nsb compared Dick Allen to Harmon Killebrew and wrote of Allen, “if Killer belongs he probably does too.” We know that that line of thinking is flawed when it comes to the Hall of Fame, because the BBWAA and special committees make mistakes. It could be a valid way of reasoning if the CoG voters don’t make mistakes, but that may be too much to hope for. Killebrew’s election was an unusual one (I just looked it up; it occurred during a year I took… Read more »
Andy
Guest

Primary: Brown, Jeter, Sutton
Secondary: Helton, Reuschel, Lyons

Mike L
Guest

In case anyone was interested, here’s a link to the NY Times obit about Bob Friend
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/04/obituaries/bob-friend-dead.html

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Thanks, Mike. A nice obit. It turns out Friend was the last of five Pirates to pitch in the first Major League game I ever went to, in 1956. I was too little to remember all those names at the time, so I can’t say I remember seeing him pitch, but since I came to admire him a few years later, it’s nice to know that I did.

mosc
Guest
I can’t remember the last time I put three names down of guys I really think should go in…. and now I have four. GAH! I’ll have to be a little more strategic. Hopefully Jeter sails in and I can vote for the other three (Nettles, Dawson, Simmons). I can vote for the secondary ballot though, I hope that doesn’t confuse Doug: Randolph (who I could maybe see voting for in the real ballot, maybe, someday) Pettitte (who I would rank pretty low if he were on the other ballot) Bobby Abreu (who should at least have is case more… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
A Brief for Boyer. Earlier I posted a comment presenting some arguments why Richie Ashburn belongs in the CoG, not because I necessarily plan to vote for him, but because his support has nearly evaporated and I thought it was likely because it’s been a long time since the arguments in his favor have been made. This comment is a similar effort for Ken Boyer. To start, here’s a version of the stat chart I’ve been posting each round, but instead of WAR/G, I’ve adapted nsb’s better idea and calculated WAR/PA multiplied by 500, which is virtually the same as… Read more »
Richard Chester
Guest

Cloyd.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

I had no doubt you would know, Richard!

mosc
Guest

I think any /PA related stats should only count a subset of a career. I’m not sure, maybe 10 years? Something like that. A player with an extended career has a lot of replacement level value that drags down their actual career excellence.

mosc
Guest

OPS+ as well

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Well, mosc, there’s an argument for that, and I think its handled by peak value stats. I understand the WAA+ approach, but what happens on the field always counts towards real results, and my feeling is we do best when we understand both types of figures.

mosc
Guest
I have to say I do get upset looking at RFIELD for Jeter as historically bad. The metric was not intended to be used like this. It was a component into WAR and is extremely tied to RPOS for which Jeter is, not surprisingly if you think about it for half a second, one of the all-time leaders. Then together they are the main components in the much more relevant DWAR category. Jeter was a bad shorstop perhaps, BUT HE WAS STILL A SHORTSTOP! If you want to compare his defensive contributions against some random outfielder (like say Manny Ramirez),… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I agree with you on this one, mosc, and made those calculations near the top of the string, where I compared Jeter to other shortstops with outstanding careers. Unfortunately, Jeter’s fielding seems to have been so poor that his total contribution (Rbat+Rfield+Rpos) winds up trailing candidates like Dahlen (-40%) and Wallace (-26%) by a substantial amount (and compared to Ripkin, Jeter trails by -52%, a greater gap than Belanger, at -47% trails Jeter). As others have noted, Jeter’s fielding defects are enlarged by the fact that while he was playing a tough position, for many years he was simultaneously preventing… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
This is a good point. In terms of overall defensive value, Jeter was below average, but not that much below average, on the order of 4-5 runs a year. An average fielding corner outfielder is 7 runs a year worse than average, and an average 1B is 10 runs a year worse than average. And plenty of guys get into the hall or get talked up as big stars based on pure offense who were mediocre to poor defensively at much easier positions. Consider Harmon Killebrew. That said, I’m not sure anybody actually thinks Jeter doesn’t belong in the COG,… Read more »
Mike L
Guest
I think the tenor of the conversation about Jeter is fundamentally different than most other (non-PEDS) players we’ve “inducted” or are presently considering. In other player’s cases, we look for stats to raise them up from the crowd, in Jeter’s case, we cut him down to size. Even Ford, who was a controversial candidate for some because of his total WAR, we argued mostly about process–did WAR, with adjustments, accurately reflect his value. We never got to the point where we were discussing how lousy he was. I agree with you–Jeter isn’t inner circle HOF or COG. But if we… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Well, there’s much in what you say, Mike. The discussion of Jeter is indeed unusual, although I think we had some similar discussions about Sisler and Ichiro. I haven’t the slightest doubt that Jeter will join the CoG, whether on this ballot or another, and that no one will feel he is out of place there. He’s not a borderline candidate. But he is a candidate with an unusually glaring problem and part of the due diligence of voting means dealing with that. I think the unusual scale of the problem is what is generating the unusual aspects of the… Read more »
Bruce Gilbert
Guest

I think it should be pointed out when we’re discussing Ford’s WAR that he was 9-1 in just 12 starts as a rookie, but then missed the next two full seasons due to military service during the Korean War. When he got back to New York he averaged 18 wins a season for the next four years. The point is that Ford’s WAR isn’t as borderline as it initially appears to be.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Interesting, Bruce. I wasn’t checking in to HHS when the Ford discussions were going on, but if that was a significant argument (as it should be), then Ford’s low total WAR would have been receiving a “military service bonus,” comparable to the special considerations (War bonus; catcher’s bonus; segregation bonus) given most CoG members with sub-60 WAR totals, providing another reason why voters did not take Ford’s WAR totals at face value.

mosc
Guest
Certainly we talked a lot about military service. Although far from universally held (Ford didn’t get in easily), the general consensus was to try and create a conservative but well justified fill-in year statistically. Methods like averaging the years before and after. I think I talked about using a weighted 3-2-1 system where the missing year is weighted more heavily on the adjacent seasons. Yes, I think Ford generally got the benefit of a good bit of doubt regarding ’51 and ’52. Joe Gordon was another one that brought a lot of discussion on war correction, as did DiMaggio believe… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I remember the Gordon discussion, and I think these sorts of considerations are completely valid in an awards context like the CoG (obviously, since I just voted for Jeter as a consequence of giving him a PED-era-handicap bonus, which is a lot less quantifiable than Ford’s service bonus). To go in a slightly different direction, I wonder how many people give Mays a service bonus when arguing GoAT status. If you calculate the figures simply using his 1951+1954 WAR, divide by two and subtract his brief 1952 record, you’re going to push Mays up to almost 170 WAR, more than… Read more »
mosc
Guest

I’d draft Mays over Ruth, yes. Over anyone.

Michael Sullivan
Guest
Mays is who I’d pick for GOAT. I might have sprung for Barry (or Roger as a pitcher) if not for PEDs. Yeah, Ruth when you add his pitching WAR, or even more, imagine what his batting would have done if he’d been a straight outfielder from day 1 — has a bigger sabermetric resume. But when I think about the advantage he had from playing pre-integration (consider that a lot more than 12% of the inner circle greats from the mid 50s-70s are black, closer to half), and from playing in a time that, while professional, was nowhere *near*… Read more »
bells
Guest
One thing I have only thought about very recently (in the last few months, after reading the posts about the 1890s, about the wartime players, and starting up these CoG discussions again) was how much harder it was to be better than replacement in the 1950s – post-integration but pre-expansion, there was a concentration of talent unlike before or since. From an absolute standpoint, at least, it was likely harder to be better than replacement at that time than at any other in history (I am sure that one could make a case of the last few decades with the… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
I had forgotten about the wartime correction for Ford. I think that’s part of why I eventually decided that even though I wasn’t going to vote for him, I was OK with him getting in. But that’s just another reason why his WAR/WAA totals shouldn’t represent a threshold. He’s got a small but significant wartime adjustment if you’re giving those, a lot of people aren’t sure whether bWAR is overcompensating for park and good defense behind, he had a ton of success in the post-season, and he had fame and reputation as a big game pitcher (fairly or not) on… Read more »
mosc
Guest

I think Michael has this right. 4-5 runs below average per year is like a slightly above average corner outfielder. Stan Musual’s RFIELD+RPOS is -80, very comparable to Jeter. Totally different positions, similar historic defensive value.

Not that anybody raved about Stan Musual’s defense but I never heard him described as one of the worst in history like people say about Jeter…

Richard Chester
Guest

Primary: Jeter, Allen, Boyer
Secondary: Abreu, Helton, Lyons

Mike L
Guest

Primary, Jeter, Allen, Wallace. Once again, staying out of the Secondary

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Here are my ballots: Primary: Dahlen, Jeter, Wallace Secondary: Lyons, Randolph, Reuschel On Dahlen and Wallace, I do want to find a persuasive way to reiterate the cases in their favor, but it would be tiresome to do that every round, so I’ll skip this one. I think they are clearly the two most deserving candidates on the ballot. I’ve joined the gang beating up on jeter here, and I think he deserves most of that. But he still walks away with a very high net value, and I think perhaps everyone has agreed that in the end he’ll be… Read more »
Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

My vote for Abreu was purely strategic. I’m a fan of his, and I love his skill set, but I assumed he wouldn’t get much love, and I want Randolph on the main ballot.

Dr. Doom
Guest
Bob, I find it hilarious (and, frankly, a little offensive) that you assume Jeter as a “clean” player. WHY would you assume that? Here’s a Mitchell Report player, who admitted to HGH use: Chuck Knoblauch. You know, the light-hitting middle infielder who played RIGHT NEXT TO Derek Jeter for years? Some notable Mitchell Report teammates: Jason Giambi, David Justice, Gary Sheffield (though I think it’s safe to say there’s probably no connection there), Knoblauch, Andy Pettitte, Roger Clemens, Rondell White, and Knoblauch, of course. What reason would we have to believe that Jeter is somehow beyond suspicion? I don’t think… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest

Also, Jason Grimsley and Mike Stanton are on the Mitchell report.

Mike L
Guest

Doom, why would you be offended if Bob thinks Jeter is clean? Perhaps wrong, although no evidence has been presented otherwise, but it’s not offensive to believe it. Serious question: The Era was shot through with users, but that doesn’t mean everyone used anymore than it means that the absence of a failed test indicates they were clean.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

I’m glad to be a source of hilarity, Doom, but, as the politicians say: If my comments have offended anyone I sincerely apologize.

Paul E
Guest
Doom, I think (if Jeter decided to get on the ‘roid train) at some point there would be an obvious uptick in his seasonal XBH totals and/or his sickly fielding range would have vastly improved. For a guy 6’3″ and 200# , I saw him drop in an awful lot of soft line drives over the second baseman’s head. He occassionally drove the ball far to left but I certainly don’t believe the ‘athleticism’ he displayed in the field was over the top. FCS, that play in the hole with the jump throw? Ripken and Tulo make that play flat… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
1. Why would his fielding have improved with steroids? They don’t make you more flexible or improve your reaction time. They don’t really even help in fast-twitch muscle fibers… they make you faster, but not necessarily quicker, which is what a SS needs. 2. Who’s to say that he wasn’t using his whole career? A-Rod never experienced a major uptick in performance, other than switching to Texas, where his performance was basically in-line with what you’d expect going to possibly the best hitter’s park in the AL. 3. Marvin Benard, Bobby Estalella (the younger), Randy Velarde, Lenny Dykstra, Jerry Hairston,… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest

Also, I agree 100% on the “jump throw” – it was a silly thing he got too much credit for, and that normal shortstops do without trouble.
Also, I agree 100% that he’s a no-doubter on the first ballot; he should be 100% like Mariano.
Nonetheless, I also don’t see how one could possibly rule out the possibility that he used steroids. There’s just no way to know for sure.

Paul E
Guest
Doom regarding the above numbered points, let me just say: 1) I don’t know feces about fast twitch muscle fiber but I thought Ben Johnson (fellow Canadien) looked awful quick in the1988 Olympics when he blew away Lewis (supposedly, maloclusion and adult braces as evidence a user himself). I never thought Jeter was a great baserunner or extremely fast. Maybe someone who saw him play every day could chime in 2) Supposedly A-Rod got a doctor’s note indicating low levels of testosterone after the 2006 season. He did manage to void the original Rangers contract and file for free agency… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Doom, You and I are not at any point likely to agree on this issue. But I believe the arguments you are making are ones you should reconsider. I see two lines of argument: (1) It is unacceptable to call a player clean: “There’s no such thing as a ‘clean’ player, because there’s no way to prove that negative.” (2) Players who were professionally associated with PED users have a certain likelihood to have been PED users because of that association. Both lines of argument seem to me to involve errors of thinking. (1) It is true that for general… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
Okay, first, I was in a bad mood when I wrote that comment for reasons having nothing to do with this thread, so maybe I didn’t use the best language. Second, this has been a hard reply to write, because it’s hard to put precisely into words what I feel about this. I’ve given it a couple of drafts, but I’ll try again. It starts with 90s baseball, I think. There’s a judgment on the baseball I grew up watching. People don’t want “cheaters” inducted. Okay. I get that. But, actually, that’s not true: Gaylord Perry cheated, Aaron/Mays/Mantle used greenies,… Read more »
Paul E
Guest
Bob, Doom, ……as far as the “he’s clean; he’s not clean debate”, Jeter never really had to cross the Ribicon on that one. On 12/15/2000, Texas gave A-Rod that ridiculous 10 year, $252 M contract. On 2/8/2001 Jeter and Steinbrenner finalized a 10 year, $ 189 M contract. Considering that negotiations were on going for ~ 13 months, Jeter and his agent probably realized Rodriguez was going to get stupid money and that contract would be the final measuring stick. He was set for life and over the next 10 years Jeter didn’t have to worry about a single red… Read more »
Paul E
Guest

sorry, that’s “RUBICON”

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Thanks for this very gracious and thoughtful response, Doom. Let me deal quickly with your final point first: Jeter not needing extra credit. I did not mean to assert as a fact that he did; what was a fact was that he needed extra credit to earn my vote over others I had been thinking should have priority. Independent of the PED issue, I see Jeter’s merits differently from you, as should be clear from my earlier posts on this string. Valid or invalid, it was the “extra credit” notion that led me to vote for Jeter, and I explained… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
A couple of quick responses: Statistical integrity – Isn’t Gaylord Perry’s entire statistical case invalidated, then? I mean, all his statistics are based on cheating, right? He threw that illegal pitch his whole career, right? Why does he not spark the same outrage? Why hasn’t anyone asked his numbers to be reduced or disregarded? I find that confusing. And again: were the statistics that Aaron/Mays/Mantle put not put up with the help of Drugs that the put into their bodies that artificially Enhanced their Performance? Why are their statistics not considered suspect? If the argument is, “No, their statistical records… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Doom, I’m not going to respond to all your paragraphs. After all, I really don’t believe we’ll come to agreement, and we could go on forever. I do want to make it clear that by choosing to discuss Manny and Allen it was not because I thought you were a supporter of Manny: you’ve made it clear you aren’t. I chose Manny because I promised not to discuss Brown again until you’re ready, and because we do have companions on HHS who vote for Manny over Allen (last round, all seven voters who chose Manny did not choose Allen, which… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Really really sorry I slipped and failed to close the hyperlink!

Dr. Doom
Guest
I agree we won’t come to an agreement on this issue. Largely that’s because I think, on some level, your argument is, “Gee, Willie Mays sure was smart to be born in 1931. Not like his stupid godson who had the dumb idea to be born in 1964.” It’s on that basis that I can’t buy the, “But the drugs were better” argument: you’re not punishing the drugs by leaving people out, nor even the scientists who created them. You end up punishing the players, who engaged in the same behaviors, but happened to be born at a different time.… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

You’re right, I don’t see the issue that way. But arguments need to come to an end so I’ll let you have the last word for this string. I’m sure we’ll do this again sometime, unless our fellow posters ask us to stop.

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

23rd all time in stolen bases?

Dr. Doom
Guest

TOTAL bases. Slip of the fingers. Yikes – he’s actually 105th in stolen bases, which is its own kind of impressive, since I never thought of him as ANY kind of a base-stealer, and he’s ahead of Willie McGee and Rod Carew, and less than 10 SB behind Sam Crawford. Like I said, overqualified.

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Most games played after the age of 34 with at least 80% of games at shortstop:

1348 … Visquel
1330 … Honus
1088 … Applying
945 … Ozzie
912 … Jeter
824 … Aparicio
796 … Dahlen
779 … Larkin
765 … Bones Ely
760 … Wallace

mosc
Guest

Looks like Jeter’s at least near the top if he’s not going to win so I’ll strategically leave him off and go with
Simmons, Nettles, Dawson

Paul E
Guest

Allen, Simmons, Sutton
Abreu, Lyons, Randolph
….G……….PA………RC….
2,247…..9,393 …1,743 .313/.411/.532 Helton
2,425….10,418…1,826 .309/.415/.503 Abreu

Those career stats are converted to an environment of 2006 NL Colo. Harry Kalas used to love to say, “…..and that will bring up BOB-eeee uh BRAY oooo.” I wonder what all these Venezuelan ballplayers do with all their money when they go back home? Build moats around their mansions with pythons and alligators? Now, there’s a case for asylum………

Dr. Doom
Guest

RIP COG member Frank Robinson, winner of the Triple Crown and Slash-Stat Triple Crown in 1967, first African-American manager in either league, and a great ambassador of the game.

Michael Sullivan
Guest

In prelude to responding to a facebook post about how he was one of the best hitters “of his era”, I did a PI on rbat. It turns out that there is only one player ahead of him on the list who retired after he did: Barry Bonds.

Michael Sullivan
Guest

Doug, did you notice that this most recent ballot spreadsheet is not set up for read all permissions? I requested permission. Either that or I’ve got a glitch somewhere. Anybody else have any trouble reading it?

Josh Davis
Guest
I’ve not the time at the moment to make a more detailed case for Ted Simmons (maybe someone else can help me out), but I wanted to give him a little attention. I’m of the opinion that catcher is the position with perhaps the most impact over the course of a season, so I’m more than willing to give Simmons a bump given the importance of catchers. No, he doesn’t have the straight numbers that some others on the ballot do, but what he did at the catcher position was special. Case in point — see how Simmons compares to… Read more »
Bruce Gilbert
Guest

Josh, I agree with you. Your point is one of the reasons I’ve been voting for Simmons. He’s been overlooked for years. I hope he gets into both the HOF and the COG.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I think there are other good things to say about Simmons, such as the fact that he played a very high proportion of his games at catcher (87%), that all nine of the catchers with more Total WAR than he are in the CoG (plus Campy, far below, a special case), and that his Total WAR (50.3) falls next in line for the Circle, just a shade below Cochrane (52.1). Others may have more to add. But we do have to acknowledge a weakness in Simmons’ case, which is his WAR rate stats. Simmons reached his solid WAR number via… Read more »
Josh Davis
Guest
Good thoughts, Bob. I appreciate the breakdown. I’ll say this — although I’ve never found Tenace particularly impressive, I think that Munson and Lombardi would not be terrible candidates to consider. Again, this is partially due to my bias (as some might say) towards catchers, and my feeling that they are generally undervalued for what they do. I do agree with you that Simmons’ peak is perhaps not as high as one might expect. If his career had been as short as Munson’s, I doubt that we would be talking about him. But that is sort of the point….the man… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
Two thoughts. First, for Josh: Why Jeter and not Simmons? I think Bob gets to a really good point, which is that the reason for one and not the other is where the natural “break point” is for catchers as opposed to shortstops. If you give Jeter 5% more JAWS, for example, he jumps from 12th to 7th at short. Do the same for Simmons, and he jumps from 10th to… 9th. That says to me that Jeter is a lot closer to “elite” at his position than Simmons. Not to mention this: Jeter is above the JAWS average for… Read more »
Josh Davis
Guest

Doom, I’m probably too late in responding to this to have you see it, but thanks for the comment. I appreciate your argument — I think it is a good and valid one. On the other hand, I also think it sort of begs the question. Maybe Jeter is closer to the top of the shortstop list than Simmons would be of catchers, but I’m arguing that there aren’t enough catchers in the HOF/COG as is. And if there were more, that would of course change the average JAWS rating for the position.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
First, for Josh, responding to a combination of your notion that catchers are undervalues (agree) and your question about the Jeter comparison (where I don’t see things as your do): I see your bias towards catchers as very reasonable because catcher is, indeed, the toughest position and, with shortstop, statistically the most valuable. Catchers do get a high Rpos built into their WAR to reward them for the value of their position, but the “toughness” is subjective, not reflected in stats, and there is a consensus that sees it as imposing a real penalty on catchers, shortening their careers or… Read more »
Josh Davis
Guest

Bob, thanks for your thoughts. That is a useful explanation of your position (and perhaps that of many on this site). It is an interesting thought to me; I’ve always tried for a balance of positions in my own personal HOF’s or All-Star teams, because it has always seemed “fair,” not to mention practical if one were actually building a team. So, perhaps that is the root of our disagreement, whether to, as you say, “reward all positions equally.” I’ll think on it more.

Sorry if this response was too late for you to see.

Hub Kid
Guest
Primary: Jeter, Tiant, Ashburn Secondary: Randolph, Lyons, Reuschel It pains me a little to vote for Jeter as a Red Sox fan, but even though he’s not top-50 inner circle, he’s not particularly near the borderline, so that puts him head and shoulders over the candidates we’ve been debating. I’m a little torn not voting for Simmons or Boyer, since I think they are both Hall of Fame level players, there are just too many more borderline COG candidates that I like better. Ashburn has a skill set that I love (defense + BA + OBP + minimal strikeouts), and… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest

Vote update (finally!)

As always, * indicates players “on the bubble.” Through 11 ballots cast (only 10 secondary):

MAIN BALLOT
====75%
6 – Derek Jeter*
====50%
4 votes – Dick Allen, Ted Simmons*, Don Sutton*
3 votes – Kevin Brown
====25%
2 votes – Bill Dahlen, Andre Dawson*, Graig Nettles, Bobby Wallace
====10%
1 vote – Richie Ashburn*, Ken Boyer*, Manny Ramirez, Luis Tiant

SECONDARY BALLOT
====75%
7 votes – Ted Lyons
6 votes – Bobby Abreu*, Willie Randolph
5 votes – Rick Reuschel
====50%
4 votes – Todd Helton
====25%
2 votes – Andy Pettitte
====10%

Voters: Bruce Gilbert, Voomo Zanzibar, Dr. Doom, opal611, Andy, mosc, Richard Chester, Bob Eno, Paul E, Hub Kid, Mike L (main ballot only)

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Matches what I have, Doom, and since you’re on it (and have a nicer format) I’ll leave the updates to you this round.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Whoops! I just spotted that koma revisited his initially invalid ballot,earlier on this string, and submitted a corrected one, not as a new comment but as a reply to Doug’s comment. Here’s his vote:

main ballot:
Manny Ramirez
Derek Jeter
R.A. Dickey
secondary ballot:
Todd Helton
Andy Pettitte
Bobby Abreu

Dr. Doom
Guest

Good catch on koma’s ballot! Glad you guys were more heads-up on the ballot than I was. I’ve correct it in my master file, but I’m not going to re-post the whole vote update just yet. With Doug’s ballot (below), we DO now have an intriguing, 3-way tie for first on the secondary ballot – Lyons, Abreu, and Randolph with 7 votes each, plus Helton and Reuschel tied just one back of that group at 6. Andy Pettitte is safe – more than 10% – but it doesn’t look good for him being redeemed to the main ballot.

Doug
Guest

My vote.

Jeter, Dawson, Ashburn
Randolph, Reuschel, Helton

JEV
Guest

Primary: Brown, Ramirez, Jeter
Secondary: Abreu, Helton, Lyons

Dave Humbert
Guest

Primary: Jeter, Dahlen, Wallace

Secondary: Lyons, Reuschel, Randolph

Dave Humbert
Guest
Just noticed that line up top mentioning that anyone receiving one vote in their debut ballot (even a shout out vote) gets onto the secondary ballot the next round. Good for Bobby Abreu who may possibly win the secondary voting and join the primary ballot! (Is this based on solid support or the 3 name requirement?). Strategic voting can keep him lurking on one ballot or the other indefinitely (10% being only 2 or 3 votes these days). The great R A Dickey joins the secondary ballot for next round. Not to knock any choice, but the relatively small voting… Read more »
Dr. Doom
Guest
Thanks for sharing those thoughts, Dave. I also agree that the Secondary Ballot is a little bit broken at this point. First of all, I think the rules state that we only get a new round if there are less than three players left on the secondary ballot (I think that’s right; I may be misremembering exactly how the rules work). Well, the only way for that to happen is for A.) everyone to vote for the exact same three candidates, B.) someone to win a runoff of those three candidates, and C.) no first-time players to have received any… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
I also agree with Dave. I think the criterion for supplementing the Secondary Ballot (that the number of candidates shrink to three) needs adjustment — although it was in the list of rules Doug initially proposed, we never really discussed it, and the fact is that if the list shrank to four, the odds of any one candidate failing to appear on 10% of the three-name ballots are really long, as Doom indicates. I think we’d do well to have two rule changes: 1) Regularize Redemption Rounds by beginning each annual CoG process with one, which will add three names… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest
I’d like to add another vote of support for changing the redemption round rules. I didn’t realize the rules were for it to wait until there were literally no more than 3 players to vote for on the secondary ballot. That’s crazy since, if you *have* to vote for three players, if you get down to three, everybody gets 100% support, and as you get even close to three, everybody starts getting extra rounds, etc. meaning that you’ll almost never get down to three without strategic voting to force it. Doug I think the secondary ballot doesn’t work well at… Read more »
Doug
Guest
The secondary ballot was my invention as a way to avoid frequent redemption rounds, as these often resulted in new players being added to the ballot and, just as quickly, falling off that ballot. In other words, they looked good compared to others eligible for redemption, but didn’t pass muster against the players who had earned their place on the ballot. I agree some changes are appropriate for the secondary ballot, so I’d like to propose these ones to take effect on the next ballot: – trigger a redemption round if, after an election round, the secondary ballot drops to… Read more »
opal611
Guest
I really like the Secondary Ballot as a measure of reducing the number of redemption rounds. Although it’s nice to occasionally revisit the people who are not on either the primary or secondary ballots by having a Redemption Round, we have to remember that these ARE folks that we have already had numerous chances to consider and vote back onto the ballots. *That being said, I know that time passes and the overall circle of consideration gets drawn bigger every time new folks are voted into the Hall of Fame, so I do think it makes sense to have these… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Doug, I think we’re seeing how hard it is for anyone to drop off of the Secondary Ballot now, even with 6. Since I think that recent redemption votes have resulted in boosting new players quickly into the Circle (Paige, Evans, Brown), perhaps it’s worth further experiment. If new names do drop off, no harm is done — the votes go elsewhere — and what I see as the best part of the CoG process, discussion, increases. If the redemption process proves a bust on reinstatement, it can as easily be unreinstated. I agree with opal611 about the one-vote criterion… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Oh — one other thought: Perhaps it would be good to re-post your invitation for responses as a new comment. I think many people might otherwise not be aware of it, since it’s not at the bottom of the string (a problem when posts aren’t numbered).

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Id wager there are players not on any ballot that would generate as much interest, and more discussion than then the players we are currently talking about. We havent had a proper Redemption Round in over a year.
Perhaps if we have an open vote to freshen up the process, then it will become more clear how best to proceed.

Voomo Zanzibar
Guest

Eckersley, Newhouser, Faber, Ruffing…

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

From last year’s near-misses: Fred Clarke, Stan Coveleski, Don Drysdale, Monte Irvin, Jim Bunning, Billy Williams . . . and there are others who equally might take off upon a fresh look.

Michael Sullivan
Guest

Eck is in already.

I’d add Cone.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Michael, Eckersley isn’t in. He had good support for many rounds, but eventually receded and dropped off the ballot in Round 111.

mosc
Guest

I thought Eck got in as well. That’s embarrassing.

Michael Sullivan
Guest

Yeah, I guess, add him to the list of pitchers I think are better than most of the guys on our current ballots.

Dave Humbert
Guest
One obstacle to realistically getting the secondary ballot down to even 5 is the 3 vote requirement. The most favored candidate moves up, but the other 2 votes are not all necessarily used on the next-favored. If I specifically wanted a certain candidate to move up, I might toss the other 2 at the least-supported secondaries to minimize chances of other candidates overtaking my favorite. If 2 or 3 of our field of 20+ voters choose to do this, the least supported guys by default will have the necessary 10% to stay on the secondary ballot and thus no one… Read more »
Dave Humbert
Guest

I really like EPM’s idea of 20% threshold to stay on the secondary ballot as well. Keeps less well supported guys from lurking. If there isn’t more active support, they should not dwell there clogging it up.

Michael Sullivan
Guest
Dave, you’ve hit what I’m thinking pretty much exactly on the head. 5 is too few, and the 3 vote requirement doesn’t work well on a ballot that will *usually* contain mostly players that most voters don’t feel belong. Even as a big-time strategic voter, I’ve never voted for a player that I didn’t think deserved further consideration at least, until this secondary ballot, where I threw a vote to Helton instead of Lyons because I thought one of the other high-vote candidates were better choices for the primary ballot. I don’t think Helton belongs, and I don’t think we… Read more »
bells
Guest
My thought is pretty simple – since we’re only dusting off this process every calendar year, and since that might mean we have different perspectives than we did a year ago, or have forgotten what we have previously thought due to lack of continuity, or the participating makeup of the site might have differed… it makes sense to have a redemption round every calendar year. I appreciate what Doug tried to do with the ballot, and I think it’s a good strcture, but the practicalities of our schedule suggest to me that it could use this tweak. It’s not like… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest

Hey Doug, missed this earier. I think that 5 is nowhere *near* high enough. I think you should trigger it at 6-7 at the *lowest*. And I think you should remove the requirement for three votes on the secondary ballot. If you’re worried about people just forgetting and posting incomplete ballots, maybe require people naming less than three players to confirm it by saying “two votes” or “one vote” or “no votes”.

If you remove the 3 vote requirement, triggering at 5 players might be high enough.

Dr. Doom
Guest
I agree with opal611 that the new candidate rule is a good one. I think even five candidates is too many. I would propose that we use 7, or even 8, as the threshold below which we would trust redemption. The current slate is above 5, and yet we all seem to agree that it’s too small. Therefore, I think we need to look to a larger pool all the time. Another option, of course, would just be to say that we will redeem annually. Earlier in the process, that would’ve been far too infrequent. At this point, it could… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
There are now about 36 hours left till voting for this round closes, so I thought I’d highlight the aspects where the contest is close for those who are planning last minute ballots. For the Primary Ballot, we have 15 ballots submitted so far. Our recent totals have been running at 20-24 (where are the voters of yesteryear — the Tunas, hartvig, bells, dr. remulak and other long-timers who were with us in 2018?), so there are probably a fair number left to come in. Jeter has built a lead that would be hard to overcome: he has 10 votes,… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest

Bob (epm) — Unless I’m mistaken we’re down to less than 8 hours (or about 9 when you made your post 1.5 hours ago. I scrolled back up and checked and it did say the deadline was sunday february 10 at 11:59 PM EST. Not sure why the spreadsheet is still sitting at 8 votes.

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest
Michael, It just means Doug’s busy — he does so much for us that it’s easy to forget he must have other things to attend to. Doom’s handling the vote count too, and he’ll do the official final tally, but if you want an interim accounting, here’s what I have as of 5:22pm (after bells’ vote): Primary Ballot With 17 ballots submitted so far 12 – Derek Jeter* =================50% (8) 5 – Dick Allen, Ted Simmons* 4 – Kevin Brown, Don Sutton*, Bobby Wallace =================25% (4) 3 – Bill Dahlen, Andre Dawson*, Manny Ramirez 2 – Richie Ashburn*, Ken Boyer*,… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Oh, I forgot to change the cutoff lines when Bells’ vote came in: 25% is now 5 votes, 50% is 9.

Josh Davis
Guest

Main ballot: Simmons, Jeter and Boyer, not because I think he’s the next man in, but I do think he is worthy of further discussion and doesn’t deserve to be relegated to the Secondary ballot.

Secondary: Helton, Lyons, Randolph

bells
Guest
I missed the deadline for the last round of voting sadly – I usually want to take the time to read the considered arguments of the intelligent folks on this site, but my life is such that I don’t even have time to catch up with the comments, so I’ve only read about half of this thread, and last week I forgot that the deadline was coming up until it passed. At any rate, don’t want to miss this round! The CoG is definitely at a difficult point of deciding who fits in and who doesn’t, as it really depends… Read more »
Michael Sullivan
Guest

Okay time for my vote:

Primary: Nettles, Allen, Tiant

Secondary: Reuschel, Randolph, Helton

Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Looks like kind of a quiet end to this round, with a total of 17 voters. The two ballots are a study in contrast: a blowout in the main ballot and a squeaker in the secondary — if I have it right, we’ll need a tie-breaker there, but I’ll wait to see what Doom and Doug calculate. I also thought there was a lot of good discussion from many voices on this string.

Doug
Guest
Thanks everyone for the suggestions on revising the secondary ballot rules. Lots of great ideas. – What I’m hearing most is that there are not enough names on that ballot, so I will insert a redemption round at this point, halfway through the COG balloting. – The other thing that seemed clear was that most people who responded supported the current practice of a new player on the ballot dropping to the secondary ballot if he attracts at least one vote. – Lastly, I heard that three votes might be too many for the secondary ballot, so let’s make it… Read more »
Bob Eno (epm)
Guest

Thanks, Doug.

Dr. Doom
Guest

Doug, can we choose to submit a blank ballot, or must a vote contain at least one name? Meaning, if a voter thinks NO players are worthy of the McCain ballot can s/he submit a ballot with no one that will count AGAINST all candidates?

Doug
Guest

You can submit a blank ballot, but this will be a symbolic act, not one which will affect the vote totals.

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