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Thread: Greg Luzinski, any case?

  1. #1
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    Greg Luzinski, any case?

    Is there any case for Greg Luzinski? Second in MVP voting in 1975 and 1977, four time allstar....here's his stats....

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/l/luzingr01.shtml


    Not bad numbers, but could they possibly be hall worthy?

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    --I doubt even Luzinski would vote for himself. He was a pretty good hitter at his best, but not historically great and not even that good for very long. He was historically bad as a fielder though and pretty terrible as a baserunner too.

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    Luzinski was either the worst...or the second worst...defensive outfielder in baseball history and one of the most ineffectual baserunners of his time period. The man was a clod with moderate clout. No thanks.

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    A pretty good player who can take pride in his career, but he isn't even remotely close to Cooperstown. A WARP3 less than 70 tells you all you need to know.
    Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball

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    Quote Originally Posted by KCGHOST
    A pretty good player who can take pride in his career, but he isn't even remotely close to Cooperstown. A WARP3 less than 70 tells you all you need to know.
    I may tell YOU something, but it done's tell ME anything. (only because I know nothing about WARP scores).

    He had been on his way to possibly a HOF career, but having to leave the game at age 33 is what really killed him. He did not even have 2000 hits. And those 2nd place finishes in the MVP voting does help to show that he was a good player, but it just so happened that in his best years, others had better ones (Morgan in '75 with his .327 BA and 67 SB's, and Foster in '77, with his 52 HR's and 149 RBI). His 307 HR's when he retired were more than respectable, and was aound 70th all-time (not sure of the exact number), but that's all he really had. He didn't have 1000 Runs, 2000 hits, he barely had 1100 RBI. And he had a fair amount of SO's (1495), though he only led once. So if he had been able to tack on 3-4 more decent seasons, then he would have a decent argument, but as it is right now, it's not really that close.
    Last edited by Edgartohof; 11-13-2006 at 10:38 PM.

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    This made me smile, because I thought back to when I was a kid and collected some baseball cards (gave them all away later). I remember looking at Schmidt and Luzinski cards and thinking, "Why does everybody talk about Schmidt when Luzinski is a better hitter?" I knew that Greg was a big guy who didn't look too good rumbling around in the OF, but figured that defense didn't matter too much (I also thought that Kingman was the man with the Cubs).
    What a different perspective 30 years later!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by KCGHOST
    A pretty good player who can take pride in his career, but he isn't even remotely close to Cooperstown. A WARP3 less than 70 tells you all you need to know.
    Perhaps if I knew what WARP3 is was....

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Go Gomes
    Perhaps if I knew what WARP3 is was....
    You'd be the first to actually know if you find out. It stands for Wins Above Replacement Player. The determination of such, and the veracity behind it, are mysteries.
    I'd make a further comment, but I have far too much respect for KCGHOST as a person and poster.

    When I was younger Luzinski was the player I was compared to most often. Unfortunately, it was for my base running abilities.
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    I think that Weird Al should do a bust on "Bette Davis Eyes" called "Greg Luzinski Thighs".

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by SABR Matt
    Luzinski was either the worst...or the second worst...defensive outfielder in baseball history and one of the most ineffectual baserunners of his time period. The man was a clod with moderate clout. No thanks.
    Wasn't it the defensive skills of the Bull (or lack thereof) that motivated the Phils to unsuccessfully campaign for the DH rule to be adopted by the NL in the late 1970s?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by hellborn
    I think that Weird Al should do a bust on "Bette Davis Eyes" called "Greg Luzinski Thighs".
    Al would be a day late and a dollar short if he did that, since Shirley Stockewell has already done "Lizzy Taylor Thighs."

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    Quote Originally Posted by leecemark
    --I doubt even Luzinski would vote for himself.


    but since he did get that one vote for the HoF in 1990, it safe to assume that luzinski's mom is a member of the bbwaa.
    check out This Game of Games, my blog on the history of 19th century baseball in St. Louis

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    Luzinski was a good hitter for a few years, but not a really great one, didn't last particularly long, and was about as bad a fielder/baserunner as there has even been. Not even close.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SABR Matt
    Luzinski was either the worst...or the second worst...defensive outfielder in baseball history and one of the most ineffectual baserunners of his time period. The man was a clod with moderate clout. No thanks.
    Was The Bull Adam Dunn Sr.?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Honus Wagner Rules
    Was The Bull Adam Dunn Sr.?
    Adam Dunn is not really slow, lumbering, or a horrible defensive OFer, at least not yet. He is rather fast for a big man and does not play a bad corner OF at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 538280
    Adam Dunn is not really slow, lumbering, or a horrible defensive OFer, at least not yet. He is rather fast for a big man and does not play a bad corner OF at all.
    According to one AL executive:

    "He's a very strange package," said an American League executive. "The power is incredible, obviously, and he does walk a lot. But the defense is brutal and the strikeouts are brutal. I think they'd move him if they could."
    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/column...rry&id=2661411

    I wonder what PCA says? Matt?

  17. #17
    Everytime i've seen Dunn play defense he's looked pretty bad, I dont see anything to tell me anything other than him being a bad to terrible defensive outfielder. 1B?

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    Luzinski isn't a HOFer; he's a classic case of a young player with old player's skills. Those guys don't age well. Luzinski was done at 33; that's definitely not a HOFer. It's doubtful he could have gone beyond where his career ended; he was gaining weight, could only DH, and if he couldn't hit more than 13 HRs in full time play, he was useless.

    Luzinski was a great player at one time; he clearly was a key player in the Phillies upsurge from 1975-78.

    What hurt Luzinski and took years off his career was the ridiculous way the Phillies kept Luzinski in the OF and keeping lesser hitters at 1B. Luzinski was originally installed in LF to make room for Tommy Hutton at 1B. Hutton and Luzinski were both big stars (along with Mike Anderson) on the Phillies' Eugene (PCL) farm club in 1971. The Phillies were looking forward to 1972 with three hot rookies to install.

    What the Phillies couldn't see was that Hutton was nowhere near the prospect Luzinski was. Hutton hit .335 at Eugene, 16 points higher than Luzinski, who hit around .319. Hutton only hit 19 HRs or so, while Luzinski hit 30 something HRs. What REALLY made Luzinski the better prospect was simply that he was 21 years old, while Hutton was 26. They moved a guy who was a much better hitting prospect to a position he really couldn't handle to install a guy who had flashy minor league numbers, but was 26 years old. Tommy Hutton wasn't going to get any better, and the Phillies should have known it; he was a minor league star who was no better than a bench player in the bigs who had a big year along with two other guys.

    Afterward, the Phillies had their stupid flings with Willie Montanez, who forsook power to hit for BA, but didn't walk, and an aging Dick Allen, who stunk at this time.

    How much better would Luzinski's career have been if he had been installed at first from the get-go, left there, and played his entire career as a Phillie? I bet if that had happened, The Bull would have played 3-4 more years, and ended up with over 400 HRs. That MIGHT have put him in the HOF, and certainly would have put him in more threads here. That's behind him now; we'll never know if it would have played out that way. Luzinski's selection for the career he actually had would diminish the HOF, and he does not belong there.
    "I do not care if half the league strikes. Those who do it will encounter quick retribution. All will be suspended and I don't care if it wrecks the National League for five years. This is the United States of America and one citizen has as much right to play as another. The National League will go down the line with Robinson whatever the consequences. You will find if you go through with your intention that you have been guilty of complete madness."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Honus Wagner Rules
    According to one AL executive:

    "He's a very strange package," said an American League executive. "The power is incredible, obviously, and he does walk a lot. But the defense is brutal and the strikeouts are brutal. I think they'd move him if they could."

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/column...rry&id=2661411

    I wonder what PCA says? Matt?
    Hmm, that's not what I heard about Dunn. I remember there was a thing done on him by ESPN like two years ago and then talked about how he was faster and swifter than his big frame would lead you to believe. But now looking at BP they have him a bad defender too. Perhaps he really is somewhat fast but still a bad outfielder.

    The strikeout thing is ridiculous. I wish people would just realize that stirkeouts are NOT worse than other outs by any significant margin. Adam Dunn's Ks are a FINE sacrifice for what he gets because of them (power).

    Reggie Jackson was once asked about Ks, he said he didn't worry about them. His job was to provide his team with power, and he did that very well. If with that comes Ks, that's okay, because they aren't even close to ample negation of his power. And he was right. It's also not a coincidence that players who strike out a lot rarely ground into double plays. Dunn also has a very low GIDP rate.

    And BTW I don't really think Dunn is a great player and he probably is not destined for the HOF. His current OPS+ is 128, and that's bound to go down before the end. Unless he can put on some serious longevity maintaining that rate I doubt he'll be a good enough hitter to get in.
    Last edited by 538280; 11-14-2006 at 06:36 PM.

  20. #20
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    Luzinski is definitely not a HOF'er but he was a very good hitter in his prime. I watched him play a lot when he joined the White Sox in 1981. I still cannot understand why he retired so young. In his second year with the Sox he hit 18 homers in 1982. The fences were around 355 down each line and about 390 to the power alleys. They moved the fences in for 1983 and he pounded 32 and hit a few on the roof. After the Sox won the division in 1983, Luzinski came to camp in 1984 very out of shape. He was about 25 pounds overweight at 270. He only hit 13 homers although I watched him crank several on the rook at old Comiskey during a homerun contest versus Reggie Jackson of the Angels. Next thing you know he was out of the game. He didn't show any desire to stay in shape and play a few more years. At that point he was strictly a DH.

    Despite his bulk he was a very cerebral hitter. He tried to follow the Charlie Lau philosophy of hitting. He was patient at the plate and took a lot of walks. The Bull had a short compact swing. It was hard to believe he could hit the ball as hard as he did because it looked like he barely moved his arms and the ball would just fly.
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    Luzinski was a good hitter. I'd love to have him playing for me. Just as much as I don't want him in the Hall of Fame.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy Bear
    ...
    What hurt Luzinski and took years off his career was the ridiculous way the Phillies kept Luzinski in the OF and keeping lesser hitters at 1B.
    ...
    How much better would Luzinski's career have been if he had been installed at first from the get-go, left there, and played his entire career as a Phillie?
    ....
    Seems like an obvious move to try...maybe the Phils did take a look at this at some point and he was even worse at 1B? You do run into the occasional guy who just can't scoop a grounder or bad throw to save his life...still, if Cecil Fielder was able to do a tolerable job at 1B, you'd think that Luzinski could have, too.
    Bill James had a hilarious description of Luzinski playing LF...said that he would turn his back to Maddox, making it clear through body language that Garry was responsible for anything hit between them. Maybe there's some youtube video of Greg bollixing up LF??

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redondos
    Al would be a day late and a dollar short if he did that, since Shirley Stockewell has already done "Lizzy Taylor Thighs."
    Ooohh! That's harsh!! I love it!! I'd like to hear that sometime...

    One of the funniest things I ever saw on TV was "Liz Taylor" (John Belushi) choking on a turkey leg and heimliching "herself"...and then just picking up the leg and chowing down some more after ejecting the offending bite.

    Last time I saw a photo of Liz, she was looking pretty good again...probably several years ago, though, maybe even a decade.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hellborn
    Seems like an obvious move to try...maybe the Phils did take a look at this at some point and he was even worse at 1B? You do run into the occasional guy who just can't scoop a grounder or bad throw to save his life...still, if Cecil Fielder was able to do a tolerable job at 1B, you'd think that Luzinski could have, too.
    Bill James had a hilarious description of Luzinski playing LF...said that he would turn his back to Maddox, making it clear through body language that Garry was responsible for anything hit between them. Maybe there's some youtube video of Greg bollixing up LF??
    I dunno--Luzinski could have been another Dick Stuart ("Dr. Strangeglove") at first, maybe not. As any long term Philly sports fan like me can tell you, that LCS (against the Dodgers) botched play on Mota's flyball to the wall showed Luzinski in all his ineptitude afield. But he could certifiably smack a baseball around. He was a born DH who was born too soon.

    As for Luzinski and the HOF, if you took his wife, family, teammates and friends, and told them if they wanted to vote for him for the HOF, they'd have to publicly justify the vote, I suspect he'd be hard pressed to get 75% of the vote from such a cherry picked electorate. With a less favorable set of voters, he really shouldn't have a chance unless their average IQs are somewhere south of 50. Despite that, I liked the guy--he was good, just not great.

    Jim Albright
    Last edited by jalbright; 11-15-2006 at 11:35 AM.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by hellborn
    Seems like an obvious move to try...maybe the Phils did take a look at this at some point and he was even worse at 1B? You do run into the occasional guy who just can't scoop a grounder or bad throw to save his life...still, if Cecil Fielder was able to do a tolerable job at 1B, you'd think that Luzinski could have, too.
    Bill James had a hilarious description of Luzinski playing LF...said that he would turn his back to Maddox, making it clear through body language that Garry was responsible for anything hit between them. Maybe there's some youtube video of Greg bollixing up LF??
    Luzinski was a first baseman in the minor leagues. He was shifted to LF at the AAA level, again, to make room for Tommy Hutton. Hutton was not a career Phillie; he was a failed Dodger prospect that the Dodgers acquired in the Sizemore deal.
    "I do not care if half the league strikes. Those who do it will encounter quick retribution. All will be suspended and I don't care if it wrecks the National League for five years. This is the United States of America and one citizen has as much right to play as another. The National League will go down the line with Robinson whatever the consequences. You will find if you go through with your intention that you have been guilty of complete madness."

    NL President Ford Frick, 1947

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