He does that with several players that were mid career, and ergo probably shouldn't be slotted somewhere in his all time rankings. I think he was saying "pass" as "we know how awesome this guy is, but no idea where he'll end up ranking after he's hung up his spikes."Originally Posted by Second Base Coach;2007935[B
1. In fact, I used another player's PA [more PA's] as denominator for Helton's input, UNDER-stating Helton'r raw numbers. His production or batting runs + the net of his defense runs saved is actually .2096.
2. From this, one can make whatever adjustment he likes to subtract from that starting point. After all, isn't that at the core of any discussion of who BELIEVES this player or that player does [or does not] deserves Hof induction. HOWEVER, I wouldn't want the Coors Effect to be applied to his defensive play ... [I doubt that mountain air does much for one's glove work].
Heck, just toss out 12.5% of Helton's Runs > Average; and he'd still be at +794.6 runs, pretty rarefied air, indeed.
there are two problems though. One is what you mentioned that Helton's batting numbers are boosted by Coors. The level of the average player should be about 20% higher. The second is that the same number of runs are worth less in Coors because there has been nearly 20% more runs per game, so a run above average (with the glove or bat) is only worth about 80% as many wins to a team.
The point I tried to make was that Helton deserves to be included in any discussion top top 1B. Park factor is a modifier that tweaks the relative interpretation of the raw statistical data. Park factor is also a variable variable. It is not fixed. It floats, as for example, the Coors factor has, between 1.12 and 1.22 over a decade.
Even if we knock 20% off the Helton numbers I cited, he'd be at over 700 net run production above an average MLB position player. There are several HoF 1B with less than half that production level.
In the context of the thread opener, I believe I was straightforward in my approach.
You wonder what kind of numbers Bagwell could have put up if the Red Sox had never let him go.
I thought/hoped that the Coors discussion was well past us. Of course all ballparks treat different types of hitters differently. Some favor lefty pull hitters, some righthanded line drive hitters, some don't favor any type of hitter, etc. I think that's pretty well understood by most- at least I hope so.
But, Coors Field- at least until recent years- has had a more positive effect on hitting than ANY other ML park- Baker Bowl included.
Here's Michael Schell's breakdown of the Coors effect- using API- adjusted park index, where 100 is average. Information for Coors Field is from 1995-2003.
Runs scored per game: Coors Field number 1 140 API- Baker bowl 1926-1937 is second at 120.
OPS: Coors Field number 1 121 API- 2 parks tied for second at 112.
Batting Average: Coors Field number 1 API 120- Baker Bowl 1922-1937 is second at 109.
Home Runs since 1961: Coors Field number 2 API 155- Fulton County 1977-1982 number 1 at 171.
Triples: Coors Field number 2 API 156- Arizona Bank One 1998-2003 number 1 at 161.
Brett and others have posted numerous times on Helton. Relatively speaking, he hit about as well on the road as at home. BUT, because his Coors numbers were SO large (as were the numbers for most other Rockies), the net effect was to make his overall numbers look better than they really were.
Helton has been a fine player- no doubt. He almost certainly will make the HOF, and probably deserves it. But, I don't think he's among the top 12 first basemen of all time, and he's a step below Bagwell, who deserves very serious consideration as high as number 5..
Thanks for this thread!
I became an Astros fan growing up because my first rec league team was named after them. I chose #5, which I wore all through HS and have since passed on to my 9u son, because of Jeff and he became one of my favorites. Never thought he got the respect he deserved, but just attributed to the PED allegations seemingly always surrounding him (and Biggio).
I think Helton is a good first baseman, and yes, above several, I'd say four or so, who are already in the Hall of Fame, but I do think he's behind Bagwell, and I would be hesitant to add him to the Hall since he'd be near the bottom of those already in. Now, he has time to add to his numbers and maybe that would push him high enough. For some reason, I don't like to add many players to the Hall now who aren't in the Top Half of those in. So for me, Helton would be at #16 or so today, and that's without the 9 or so not yet in or eligible among the recent or current players. So he'd be at about #25 of 29. Too far down for me, although I'm not a fan of putting in McGwire, Palmeiro, or Giambi, who are in that group. And the ones not in who should be in my view like Thomas, Pujols, Bagwell, and Thome. With Helton, he's in the territory of Fred McGriff and Carlos Delgado to me, ... very good, but just a bit short of making it, even though they were very good and deserve consideration.
Look at the career stats for the right hands Red Sox greats. That gives us a glimpse....
Bagwell was a great player who played during a time where he sort of became just another slugger. Sure, he could hit, but a first baseman isn't going to stand out when you have players at more valuable defensive positions putting up the same numbers. Bonds suffered the same fate during the same period. Sosa and Mcgwire were putting their numbers to shame, and guys like Chipper Jones, Jeff Kent, Mike Piazza, Larry Walker, Jim Edmonds, and Craig Biggio were playing prime defensive positions and/or adding defensive and baserunning value.. You also had Gwynn, Sheffield, Vlad, Pujols, and Helton competing with him, and this isn;t even counting the AL.
He was unfortunate. If he was in his prime now, he would be considered the best player in baseball.
road stats, Thomas, Bagwell, and Helton
Bagwell 1044 games, 4787 PA, 215 HR, 750 RBI, 110 SB .291/.398/.521
Thomas 1149 games, 5064 PA, 209 HR, 815 RBI, 17 SB,.297/.414/.511
THelton 1023 games, 4312 PA, 137 HR, 524 RBI, 13 SB,.290/.390/.479
Top 10 WAR
Bagwell 7.4,7.1,6.9,6.7,5.8,5.5,5.1,5.0,4.6, 4.3 total 58.4
Thomas 7.0,6.7,6.6,6.1,5.9,5.7,5.3,4.9,3.9,3.3 total 55.4
THelton 8.4, 7.6,7.4,5.8,5.8,4.2,4.1,3.0,2.8, 2.6 total 49.1
I think WAR overrates players that play in hitter-friendly parks. I wish there was a road-WAR stat. Helton's road stats do hold up pretty well, however. However, I'm guessing that Helton, along with Walker, Castilla, Gallaraga, and Bichette all posted career OPS numbers that were at least 150 pts higher at Coors vs on the road. I've also looked at Chuck Klein's road stats and his WAR numbers look great despite some very anemic road stats.
Mike Piazza is vastly underrated using WAR. Here are his road stats:
975 games 4064 PA , 232 HR, 712 RBI, .320 388 .572
To me he was matching the best first baseman, and then some, and doing it from the catcher spot, and yet still always had less offensive WAR than them.
WAR has issues with its home/road factor as well as its positional adjustments.
Last edited by willshad; 05-04-2012 at 08:32 PM.
player ------ Coors ------------------- road -- ----------- OPS spread Coors/road
To Helton 4499 PA, .352/.449/.618/1.068... 4312 PA, .290/.390/.479/.869 ... +.199
Gallaraga 1065 PA, .333/.394/.631/1.025... 4550 PA, .270/.327/.464/.791 ... +.234
Bichette 1755 PA, .358/.394/.641/1.035 ... 3390 PA, .269/.306/.424/.730 ... +.305
Walker 2501 PA, .381/.462/.710/1.172 ... 4034 PA, .278/.370/.495/.865 ... +.307
Last edited by pheasant; 05-04-2012 at 08:46 PM.
Helton's OPS+ though on the road is right in line with his home OPS+ (it is about 4% lower than his home OPS+ which is as good as, or a little better than the typical league dropoff). The main reason though is that he maintains his relative on-base percentage on the road. Take Helton's .390 road OB%. The average player has about a 4% better OB% at home which would put it at about .406, and the average player got about a 15% boost at Coors versus in another park, which would put him at .467 so his home OB% is actually not as good as his road OB% relative to ballpark and home field boosts. As for his .479 slugging, the average guy gets about a 5% boost at home which would be .503 and 22 or 23% boost to slugging at Coors which would be about .616. In other words Helton did not benefit more from Coors than an average hitter did. Walker played during an even greater offensive period at Coors and his home+coors rates versus his road+other park rates are right in line with the league. That means that it does not help either of their WAR values.
It is hard to believe, but prior to the humidor, an average major league player with a .270/.340/.425 line who moved to Coors as a home park would have hit .330/.420/.570 AT COORS FIELD
Last edited by brett; 05-04-2012 at 09:18 PM.