View Poll Results: Who do you have ranked higher?

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  • Barry Bonds

    35 56.45%
  • Hank Aaron

    27 43.55%
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Thread: Barry Bonds vs Hank Aaron

  1. #26
    let's see how good my memory is from reading this book first in 1967

    Page 150-151 Sandy Koufax speaking (or writing)

    "I talk of Aaron so often because he is the toughest hitter in the league as far as I am concerned. With Aaron, it doesn't matter whether you throw the fastball or the curve because he has the ability to wait longer than almost any other hitter and having waited, he has the quickness with the bat. You can pitch to Willie Mays. If you make your pitch you've got a chance of getting Willie out. If you make a mistake, you've got a good chance of losing a baseball or a baseball game - and in the course of a ball game you're going to make mistakes.

    The whole idea with Mays is to hope you make the mistake where it won't hurt you. The idea with Aaron is to hope his line drives are hit to a fielder."




    Quote Originally Posted by 9RoyHobbsRF View Post
    The one quote about Aaron that always impressed me:

    Sandy Koufax in his 1966 biography: (paraphrasing from memory)

    "You can get Mays out if you make your pitch, but if you make a mistake it will cost you and in the course of a game you will make mistakes.
    As for Aaron, I just hope he hits his line drives to a fielder."
    1. The more I learn, the more convinced I am that many players are over-rated due to inflated stats from offensive home parks (and eras)
    2. Strat-O-Matic Baseball Player, Collector and Hobbyist since 1969, visit my strat site: http://somgamersparadiseforum.smfforfree4.com/index.php

  2. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by pheasant View Post
    My quote is taken out of context. I like the fact that someone listed Bonds ahead of Mays in his rankings earlier in this post. I just don't agree with it.

    I call them as I see them.
    Beautifully stated, "pheasant"!!!

    Great to have members like you contributing here!

  3. #28
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    I have Aaron ahead of Bonds.
    He was a well-rounded athlete who played a steady game where he could be counted on to make a play, hit a drive, or steal a base.

    Bonds, of course, has the same stuff, but I don't count his seasons from 2001 on. However, using baseball-reference to total those seasons he still has 494 HRs, a 165 OPS+, over 4000 total bases, and more than 400 SBs.
    “There can be no higher law in journalism than to tell the truth and to shame the devil.” – Walter Lippmann

    "Fill in any figure you want for that boy [Mantle]. Whatever the figure, it's a deal." - Branch Rickey

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by csh19792001 View Post
    Beautifully stated, "pheasant"!!!

    Great to have members like you contributing here!
    Thanks Chris. I've only been here for 4 months, but I've already had a bunch of fun. There are a lot of good veterans here like yourself to learn from.

  5. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by pheasant View Post
    I think Mays would be a top 3-5 guy in any era, just like Ruth. However, I think Cobb may not have(1920s-1970s). Once the 1980s rolled around, then Cobb would rise to the top again. I.e, I believe that there are 3 different eras: The dead ball era, the live ball era, and the technology/weight training era(started circa 1980).
    This is one of the most interesting points I've seen raised here in quite awhile. Thank you again for your consistent cogent insights, my friend.
    Last edited by csh19792001; 03-30-2012 at 01:54 PM.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by csh19792001 View Post
    This is one of the most interesting points I've seen raised here in quite awhile. Thank you again for your consistent cogent insights, my friend.
    If Cobb played today he would be kind of like Ichiro. The sabermetric people would all say he is overrated because he doesn't hit home runs or walk a lot.

  7. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by willshad View Post
    If Cobb played today he would be kind of like Ichiro. The sabermetric people would all say he is overrated because he doesn't hit home runs or walk a lot.
    Any hit short of a home run is the waste of an opportunity to walk.

  8. #33
    Aaron, the real HR leader. Consistent, relentless, intelligent, team player.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by willshad View Post
    If Cobb played today he would be kind of like Ichiro. The sabermetric people would all say he is overrated because he doesn't hit home runs or walk a lot.
    Cobb today would be deadly. He was a maniac on the field. He just too old and lacked the proper tools to destroy the 1920s. Cobb was a very intelligent man. His dad was a professor and a state senator. And I believe that Ty inherited his father's smarts, but he used them in the stock market and on the baseball field. Cobb read pitchers minds very well. He figured out when Ed Walsh was throwing his spitter by observing the movment of his cap. He observed various different movements of pitchers while on the bases, which allowed him so many bases. Ty's determination to dominate has been unmatched in MLB history, imho. Bring Ty to this era and you'd have a guy that would have hired the best nutrionists, weight trainers, and tech guys around. I don't think anyone will doubt Cobb's maniacal efforts. And that wouldn't change. That was in his blood. I.e, nowadays, Cobb would spend hundreds of hours studying tapes, eating the right foods and supplements(legal), and weight training. Thus, I see the Cobb that was very trim 190 lbs during his prime with 3.5 speed(to first base) transformed into a super-Cobb today running 3.3 speed while weighing in at a completely ripped 210 lbs. And this super-Cobb would now have power alleys and centerfield fences that are 30-50 feet closer than in the 1920s. Even if he still sprayed line drives like he did in his day, he'd now smash a bunch them over these comparably short fences. Cobb playing today would be very dangerous. That's a very scary thought.

  10. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by willshad View Post
    If Cobb played today he would be kind of like Ichiro. The sabermetric people would all say he is overrated because he doesn't hit home runs or walk a lot.
    I don't agree with the Ichiro part. Even with his style I think in today's parks he hits at least 300 home runs given 3000 games to do it. He also drew an average amount of walks for his time, but in that time the best hitters did NOT get walked more than the average hitter so there is really no indication of his walk tendancies. He walked more than Lajoie. I actually think Lajoie, Speaker, Cobb and Wagner all would have hit at LEAST 300 home runs in today's setting, and maybe more like 450 for Wagner.

  11. #36
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    --Well it would depend alot on how their approach changed. Wagner was probably the strongest player of his time and upper cutting with the live ball would have been a serious power hitting in the live ball era. I think with a different approach 40-50 HR a year wouldn't be an outlandish estimate. Even keeping his line drive swing and going more for average I'd bet his HR would be in the 20-30 range. Cobb was also a big man for his time and, while I don't think he would be a 50 HR kind of guy he might have hit 30-40 with a different approach in the liveball era - and done that for a long time. Actually he might well have been an Aaron type player.

  12. #37
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    I see Cobb utilizing today's tools to put up a .340 avg along with 30 HRs, 40 doubles, 10 triples, and 40 steals for a very long stretch. I,e I see Cobb putting up a career of .335 with 550 HRs 700 doubles, 150 triples, and 650 steals in today's game, assuming a natural decline

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by pheasant View Post
    I see Cobb utilizing today's tools to put up a .340 avg along with 30 HRs, 40 doubles, 10 triples, and 40 steals for a very long stretch. I,e I see Cobb putting up a career of .335 with 550 HRs 700 doubles, 150 triples, and 650 steals in today's game, assuming a natural decline
    maybe if he took steroids. I see him more as Ichiro with more doubles and triples..but to each their own.
    Last edited by willshad; 03-30-2012 at 10:44 PM.

  14. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by pheasant View Post
    I see Cobb utilizing today's tools to put up a .340 avg along with 30 HRs, 40 doubles, 10 triples, and 40 steals for a very long stretch. I,e I see Cobb putting up a career of .335 with 550 HRs 700 doubles, 150 triples, and 650 steals in today's game, assuming a natural decline
    If Cobb put up those numbers in today's game, then he would undoubtedly be considered the greatest player ever.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by willshad View Post
    maybe if he took steroids. I see him more as Ichiro with more doubles and triples..but to each their own.
    Yeah, to this day I don't really get why EVERY old time baseball star would put up HUGE numbers in today'a game? No one ever makes those predictions in other sports. Would Red Grange rush for 25,000 yards in the NFL today? Would Wilt Chamberlain average 50 ppg for an entire career? Would Paavo Nurmi run a 3:35 mile today? It's quite possible that the old time stars (Ruth. Cobb, Gehrig, etc ) would struggle to be hit like the 2011 Aaron Rowand. For some strange reason some people do not want to consider that possibility?
    Last edited by Honus Wagner Rules; 03-30-2012 at 11:41 PM.
    Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
    Yeah, to this day I don't really get why EVERY old time baseball star would put up HUGE numbers in today'a game? No one ever makes those predictions in other sports. Would Red Grange rush for 25,000 yards in the NFL today? Would Wilt Chamberlain average 50 ppg for an entire career? Would Paavo Nurmi run a 3:35 mile today? It's quite possible that the old time stars (Ruth. Cobb, Gehrig, etc ) would struggle to be hit like the 2011 Aaron Rowand. For some strange reason some people do not want to consider that possibility?
    Baseball, unlike the NFL or NBA, operates under an assumption that players of the past are both better AND somehow have more integrity than the players of today.

    Having said that:
    I think that Johannes Wagner with his 5'11", 200 lb. physique and violent swing would be an All-Star player at the least. Tris Speaker's adaptation to the live ball when he was over 30 speaks well of his talent and intelligence.

    Funnily enough a kid at the Y asked me if I though Michale Jordan could play today !?!?
    stevegallanter.wordpress.com

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Gallanter View Post
    Baseball, unlike the NFL or NBA, operates under an assumption that players of the past are both better AND somehow have more integrity than the players of today.
    Well, that is more the assumption of Dead Ball Era fans.

    Having said that:
    I think that Johannes Wagner with his 5'11", 200 lb. physique and violent swing would be an All-Star player at the least.
    Willie Mo Pena has a powerful body and violent swing.

    Tris Speaker's adaptation to the live ball when he was over 30 speaks well of his talent and intelligence.
    Ok. but that doesn't prove the Grey Eagle could be an All-Star today.

    Funnily enough a kid at the Y asked me if I though Michale Jordan could play today !?!?
    stevegallanter.wordpress.com
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    Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

  18. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
    Yeah, to this day I don't really get why EVERY old time baseball star would put up HUGE numbers in today'a game? No one ever makes those predictions in other sports. Would Red Grange rush for 25,000 yards in the NFL today? Would Wilt Chamberlain average 50 ppg for an entire career? Would Paavo Nurmi run a 3:35 mile today? It's quite possible that the old time stars (Ruth. Cobb, Gehrig, etc ) would struggle to be hit like the 2011 Aaron Rowand. For some strange reason some people do not want to consider that possibility?
    I don't agree with the every player. And even though I have Ruth at the top I've said dozens of time he would not dominate today as he did then and he might not put up the numbers he did back then if playing today. But I would have to think he would probably more than hold his own. Obviously he had waht most good and great hitter have in any era, good eye, quick reflexes and a big strong guy.
    On the other side, when I see Babe being a modern day Steve Balboni, thats a joke. Rowand I doubt very much no I wouldn't consider that. Difficult to believe that the batter with the 5th highest career batting average would struggle today. So you can see, I don't see the Ruth of those days dominating now as he did then but the Balboni, Rowands and some even saying Ruth might be even sitting the bench today, taking it too far.
    Lets put it this way, if Wagner, Cobb and Ruth would struggle today, kind of like saying no player from back then could cut it in todays game.
    We will never know but I did see a comment some years ago that I think could be fairly accurate dealing with players being moved into other era's in the game. The article stated that most likely if we took the top 5 percent of the best hitters in any era, they would probably hit in any era .Maybe not the same numbers put up in their time but hitting with some success.
    I would think Wagner and Cobb in todays game would hit, Carew, Brett, Bonds, put them into any era and they hit.
    One thing has to be considered, moving a past great into todays game should not come in todays game as is. Born in a later time they would benefit from some of the advancements in nutrition, training and equipment changes.
    Last edited by SHOELESSJOE3; 03-31-2012 at 03:48 AM.

  19. #44
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    Well put, Shoeless. And I never said every player would dominate today. I believe that it's far from it, actually. I have only 10-15 players in history that started from 1880-1950 that would dominate today. That's an extremely small percentage. I just happen to think that Cobb is one of them. And he would be towards the top. He was a big and speedy man back in the day, even without the advantage of today's weight training, nutrition, technology, etc. But more importantly, he was a possessed demon on the baseball field. Give a guy like that today's advantages in training, and he'd still put up big numbers. I.e, I see him being a much bigger, stronger, and slightly faster version of Suzuki. Actually, I've read that Suzuki ran a 3.7 to first base. That is not really all that fast at all. As for my projections, I'm just having fun. But when I run the numbers that I put up earlier, I also have him walking slightly more than before, about 70 times a year in 700 plate appearances. That translates to a .406 ob% and a .578 slug%. That ob% is still 27 pts lower than he had. However, that .578 slug% is 66 pts higher, which seems unjustified. However, Cobb slugged a dead ball in much bigger fields against spit balls, emery balls etc. I may be adjusting his slugging upwards too much. But this is my gut. And this man played 24 years despite not having today's advanced doctors and surgeons to help him out. Thus, I have Cobb putting up some pretty sick numbers for career totals. As for Bonds, I believe that had he not juiced, he would have picked up a few more Gold Gloves about an extra 100 steals, but 150-170 fewer homeruns. That translates to roughly 600 HRs and 600 SB. After all, Bonds took very good care of himself until he started poisoning his body with that junk.
    And by the way, one could just say that the greatest from the past would be terrible compared to today's elite players. But if I truly believed that, then guys like Cobb and Ruth wouldn't be nearly as interesting.

  20. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by pheasant View Post
    I see Cobb utilizing today's tools to put up a .340 avg along with 30 HRs, 40 doubles, 10 triples, and 40 steals for a very long stretch. I,e I see Cobb putting up a career of .335 with 550 HRs 700 doubles, 150 triples, and 650 steals in today's game, assuming a natural decline
    The .340 estimate seems about right. Batting averages went up with the live ball but then down with more moving pitches and better fielding (unearned runs, errors and BABIP all dropped pretty steadily from the 20s to today). I think Cobb would have hit about .380 if he had played through the top average period of the live ball from maybe 1918-1941. (his realtive rates in Hornsby's era put him at over .380/.450/.570) But keep this in mind about the power numbers: Cobb played in a time when there wasn't even such a thing as a home run hitter. He may have been a relatively good power hitter for his time, in a league of guys who's talents were to put the ball in play and run. To say he would be as good a home run hitter as maybe Mike Schmidt or maybe more like Stan Musial or Mel Ott who were among the best in a time when there was a place for pure power hitters is a real stretch for me. I think Musial is a good model for where Cobb, Wagner and Speaker may have been, but I don't think they quite match a power hitter who developed in a power era. Wagner maybe has Musial like hitting numbers. To have Cobb hitting 550, it would be kind of like saying that Tim Tebow should be the best passer in the NFL because he was the best in college where the emphasis is different, or maybe that Sammy Baugh might be as good a passer as Drew Brees because he was "relatively" as good in a league where passing was less important. 550 home runs is very rare, in fact only one person hit 550 for quite a long time and to turn Cobb who specialized in so many other things into being better than Foxx, Williams, Musial or Gehrig perhaps, well, I think we are a little polluted by the home run numbers from '94-'2004 or so. 400 home runs is huge.

  21. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by bluesky5 View Post
    Aaron, the real HR leader. Consistent, relentless, intelligent, team player.
    Absolutely!

  22. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by brett View Post
    I don't agree with the Ichiro part. Even with his style I think in today's parks he hits at least 300 home runs given 3000 games to do it. He also drew an average amount of walks for his time, but in that time the best hitters did NOT get walked more than the average hitter so there is really no indication of his walk tendancies. He walked more than Lajoie. I actually think Lajoie, Speaker, Cobb and Wagner all would have hit at LEAST 300 home runs in today's setting, and maybe more like 450 for Wagner.
    Cobb's walk rate was actually significantly above the league average during his time in the AL. About the 65th percentile. Ichrio's is 28% below the league average for his career, so around the 22nd percentile.

    When I think of Cobb against the guys I've seen and studied, I think only small part Ichiro (because of the blazing speed, ability to chop the ball, and hitting to all fields). But I also think of Tony Gwynn, the consummate "place hitter" and artist, who was impossible to strike out and studied pitchers and the opposition with relentless rigor and zeal. Ichiro is the worst "hacker" I've ever seen play over many years, Gwynn was his antithesis.

    I also think of George Brett, the aggresive firebrand..a line drive/gap hitter with some pop, but not an uppercutter who tried to yank everything to right for a homers. Like Cobb, Brett hit for an outstanding average, left everything out on the field and was reknowned for his intensity, and was durable as hell.

    When I hear about the more extreme incidences of where competitiveness becomes overt violence, I think of former hockey player Nyjer Morgan, who is a runt but topples guys twice his size and would fight any opposing player, and probably get the better of almost all of them. Fearless rage.

    Wild stuff here!
    Nyjer Morgan brawls
    Last edited by csh19792001; 03-31-2012 at 10:04 AM.

  23. #48
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    --I think a Brett type players is a good comp for Cobb also. Cobb was more consistently near the top of his game though so I'd expect you'd see a few more seasons like Brett at his best and fewer off seasons. So another batting title or three, maybe more than the one 30 HR season, a few hundred more hits and an OPS+ maybe halfway between Brett's and what Cobb did in his own time.

  24. #49
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    You do bring up a great point here about being polluted over the past 15 years or so. I did run a high estimate on homeruns for Cobb since I have him playing a ridiculous amount of games with the newer 162 game schedule. After all, he played over 3000 games during his 24 years in the bigs. Thus, I have him playing about 150 extra games nowadays with about 12000 total at-bats, which breaks down to a home run every 21.8 at-bats. That might be giving him too much credit. I see your point there. But 550 HRs doesn't look so great now when 12000 at-bats are needed to achieve it.
    Last edited by pheasant; 03-31-2012 at 10:54 AM.

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by SHOELESSJOE3 View Post
    I don't agree with the every player. And even though I have Ruth at the top I've said dozens of time he would not dominate today as he did then and he might not put up the numbers he did back then if playing today. But I would have to think he would probably more than hold his own. Obviously he had waht most good and great hitter have in any era, good eye, quick reflexes and a big strong guy.
    Ruth had good eye, quick reflexes and a big strong guy for his era. That is all we can know. We don't know if those attirbutes are good enough to play in today's game and do well.


    On the other side, when I see Babe being a modern day Steve Balboni, thats a joke. Rowand I doubt very much no I wouldn't consider that. Difficult to believe that the batter with the 5th highest career batting average would struggle today. So you can see, I don't see the Ruth of those days dominating now as he did then but the Balboni, Rowands and some even saying Ruth might be even sitting the bench today, taking it too far.
    It's not so difficult to believe. How do we do we know Ruth was a great player? Because he utterly dominated his era. He played against a specific group of players, in specific stadduim, using a specific equipment.

    Lets put it this way, if Wagner, Cobb and Ruth would struggle today, kind of like saying no player from back then could cut it in todays game.
    That is certainly possible. Like I asked before. Could Red Grange, Wilt Chamberlain, or Paavo Nurmi hold their own against modern athletes in their sport?

    We will never know but I did see a comment some years ago that I think could be fairly accurate dealing with players being moved into other era's in the game. The article stated that most likely if we took the top 5 percent of the best hitters in any era, they would probably hit in any era .Maybe not the same numbers put up in their time but hitting with some success.
    I'm not familiar with this article. I'd like to read it.


    I would think Wagner and Cobb in todays game would hit, Carew, Brett, Bonds, put them into any era and they hit.

    One thing has to be considered, moving a past great into todays game should not come in todays game as is. Born in a later time they would benefit from some of the advancements in nutrition, training and equipment changes.[/QUOTE]
    The only way is to bring them as-is. The question is whether the Babe Ruth of the 1920's could dominate today. If you don't bring Ruth to the present as-si then you don't really have Babe Ruth anymore. You have someone else.

    Though we can't being players pf the past to the present there is a real life analogy that I believe gives great insight into how players of the past may fair. This analogy is the the move of Japanese players to the majors. Every single player that comes to the majors from Japan has a drop in performance with respect to their Japanese stats. This makes sense since the Japanese player is coming to a league where the pitchers generally throw harder, the players tend to be larger and stronger, the stadiums are generally bigger, and the season is longer. At least to me this gives great insight as to how players of the past would fair today. Hideki Matsui was a great power hitter in Japan. I saw him play while I was in Japan back in 2002. Yet his HR power dropped significantly when he came to the majors.

    Code:
    Age HR  PA   PA/HR
    19  11  203  18.45
    20  20  569  28.45
    21  22  569  25.86 
    22  38  569  14.97
    23  37  596  16.10
    24  34  603  17.74
    25  42  572  13.62
    26  42  589  14.02
    27  36  611  16.97
    28  50  620  12.40
    
    29  16  695  43.44
    30  31  680  21.94
    31  23  704  30.61
    32   8  201  25.13
    33  25  634  25.36
    34   9  378  42.00
    35  28  528  18.86
    36  21  558  26.57
    37  12  585  48.75
    Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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