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Barry Larkin

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  • #16
    ...and of course he was rated sixth all-time at SS by Mr. James in his latest Abstract, ahead of Ozzie Smith and Joe Cronin.

    At that time, aside from the "uber-generation" players, only Honus Wagner, Monte Ward, and Arky Vaughan had a higher WS/season than Larkin's 28.12. Of course, that number would have gone down by now.
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    • #17
      Originally posted by J W
      ...and of course he was rated sixth all-time at SS by Mr. James in his latest Abstract, ahead of Ozzie Smith and Joe Cronin.
      I agree with Larkin being a Hall of Famer, but Mr. James is setting a bad example for today's youth culture through his apparent continual abuse of illegal narcotic substances.

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      • #18
        A couple of years ago, during one game the Royals announcers were discussing possible HoFers who will retire after playing their entire careers with one team. With the exception of Barry, they listed everyone, including Gwynn and Ripken. I kept waiting for them to mention Barry, but they never did. This tells me that in the era of Arod, Nomar, Jeter, Tejada that Barry Larkin is already becoming less appreciated, and even forgotten. He'll probably get in, but it might take a while on the ballot.
        Catfish Hunter, RIP. Mark Fidrych, RIP. Skip Caray, RIP. Tony Gwynn, #19, RIP

        A fanatic is someone who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. -- Winston Churchill. (Please take note that I've recently become aware of how this quote applies to a certain US president. This is a coincidence, and the quote was first added to this signature too far back to remember when).

        Experience is the hardest teacher. She gives the test first and the lesson later. -- Dan Quisenberry.

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        • #19
          It's going to take a lot of screaming and yelling to get him in... so it's up to his supporters on the Association.
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          • #20
            Originally posted by The Commissioner
            I agree with Larkin being a Hall of Famer, but Mr. James is setting a bad example for today's youth culture through his apparent continual abuse of illegal narcotic substances.
            I can certainly see Barry being rated above Cronin and Ozzie. Cronin was not as goog of an all-around player that Larkin was. His defense was no where near as good as Larkins. Plus there numbers are pretty close despite the fact that for the most part Cronin played in a better hitters era than Larkin. Ozzie had the defense but was nowhere near as good as Larkin is with the bat. Also Barry was not a bad fielder he was quite good. So it comes down to how much weight do you put on defense. I would not say not enough especially when you consider that Barry was quite good at defense to out weigh the hitting accomplishments.

            The trouble with Barry is that he is fragile and had the misfortune of playing while the new wave of SS came onto the scene. If ozzie had started his career in 1990 or 1989 (like Omar) he probably wouldn't have a shot at the Hall. Fortunately for him he played at a time when most teams only required defense at SS.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by abolishthedh
              A couple of years ago, during one game the Royals announcers were discussing possible HoFers who will retire after playing their entire careers with one team. With the exception of Barry, they listed everyone, including Gwynn and Ripken. I kept waiting for them to mention Barry, but they never did. This tells me that in the era of Arod, Nomar, Jeter, Tejada that Barry Larkin is already becoming less appreciated, and even forgotten. He'll probably get in, but it might take a while on the ballot.
              I think this is more a reflection on the fact that Denny Matthews and Ryan Lefebvre haven't seen Larkin play much because neither has ever covered a National League team.

              They've both had the good fortune to watch the current triumverate of AL shortstops (now adding Tejada) as well as Omar Vizquel. And Matthews has been blessed with watching Yount, Trammell, Ripken, Campaneris and Belanger, among others, over the years.

              No doubt, the small sampling of interleague matchups they've watched an old Larkin in, are a poor sampling of how consistently great he's been throughout his career.

              Furthermore, it's entirely possible, if they were throwing out names, that they simply overlooked one. Let's face it...there's a pretty fair number of decent candidates to discuss.
              "It is a simple matter to erect a Hall of Fame, but difficult to select the tenants." -- Ken Smith
              "I am led to suspect that some of the electorate is very dumb." -- Henry P. Edwards
              "You have a Hall of Fame to put people in, not keep people out." -- Brian Kenny
              "There's no such thing as a perfect ballot." -- Jay Jaffe

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              • #22
                HOF Chances: Barry Larkin?

                Hello All...new poster to Baseball Fever, but have been reading here for a while and think this is a great site!

                I just wrote an article on Barry Larkin's HOF chances on my fledgling baseball blog, The Rule V Baseball Blog, and wanted to see what the folks around here thought about his worthiness.
                Visit my card site at Mike D's Baseball Card Page.

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                • #23
                  Well, I would elect him, but he has problems. First, by the time he gets on the ballot (2009) it will be 9-10 years since he had a good season. That's given the voter's time to forget him. Despite a 19 year career he "only" played in 2180 games and his counting numbers aren't special. His lack of durability will be a mark against him.

                  He did win an MVP award, several gold gloves, and was in 12 all-star games. His comp are all good players and three of them are HoFers (Cronin, Reese, and Sandberg). He doesn't do well at all on the Grey or Black Ink ranking. His Hof standard ranking is just below average, while his HoF monitor ranking is well above average.

                  And it doesn't help that by the time his career ended he was thoroughly eclipsed by Arod, Jeter, Tejada and Garciaparra. Fortunately for him Nomar has about well off the face of the earth and Arod has moved to 3rd.
                  Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball

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                  • #24
                    Most people on this site consider Larkin a deserving HoFer. If you check the "Baseball Fever Hall of Fame" thread at the top, you'll see that Larkin has already been elected. Whether the actual Hall of Fame voters feel the same way remains to be seen. The lack of support for Alan Trammell doesn't bode well for Larkin, as the two players were similar (though Larkin was beter).

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                    • #25
                      With the exception of Ozzie Smith, middle infielders have not been treated kindly in recent years. Bobby Grich, Lou Whitaker, and Willie Randolph all received the one and done treatment, while Sandberg took much longer than he should have to get in, and Trammell struggles to stay on the ballot each year.

                      That being said, I think Larkin will get in, as he should (so should Trammell for that matter, and perhaps even Grich and Whitaker), but I think like Sandberg, Larkin will take a couple of years to get in.

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                      • #26
                        Barry Larkin should be a first ballot HOFer IMO. The only concern with him is that he wasn't always that durable and missed quite a few games during the season. Still, though, he was an awesome player, one of the most complete in baseball history (what is his weakness again?). I might as well re-post the long post I made in the history forum in my "Jeter vs. Larkin" thread:

                        If he does achieve those career totals you give, and he doesn't improve his peak, I don't see how on earth he goes ahead of Barry Larkin IMO. All he would have is pure longevity. People don't realize the true greatness of Barry Larkin over his career. Look at this handy little chart:

                        Code:
                                                OPS       SS OPS       DIFF*
                        Barry Larkin           .815        .678        20.2%
                        Derek Jeter            .848        .737        15.1%
                        RCAP
                        Honus Wagner 1060
                        Arky Vaughan 598
                        Alex Rodriguez 506
                        BARRY LARKIN 488
                        George Davis 452
                        Joe Cronin 431
                        Cal Ripken 408
                        Robin Yount 408
                        Luke Appling 375
                        Alan Trammell 365

                        That shows runs created in his career above the average SS during his time. Larkin is 4th all time, behind the three players pretty much conceded as the best offensive SSs ever. In relative OPS versus the league average shortstop, he is I believe 4th or 5th all time.

                        Over his career Larkin had an OPS 21% better than SSs of his time (just player OPS divided by league average, not OPS+). Jeter so far is 15% better than the other SSs. That is also bound to go down. Barry Larkin is the better offensive player.

                        Some may say that there have been more great offensive shortstops in Jeter's time. There have, but I think that makes Jeter less valuable and Larkin more. Hitting from SS is more valualble when it's harder to find.

                        I do think, however, that the fact there were more other great hitting 1B and CF during their eras does make their hitting slightly less valuable. I think the fact it was easier to get a great hitting CFer in Ashburn's time than in most others does make Ashburn's hitting less valuable. As I said before, when there are less great hitters at a position in the league it makes those great hitters there are at that position more valuable. The fact that it was harder to get a great hitting SS in Larkin's era does make Larkin's hitting more valuable IMO.

                        Anyway, I think we're all missing the point here. Despite what the performance of the average shorstop in their era is, Larkin will still almost certainly end up the better hitter, unless Jeter has a way better second half of his career which is very rare for a shortstop.

                        As of right now, Larkin's peak is also better. Larkin had one year (1996) which was about the same in quality as Jeter's great 1998 year. Other than that Larkin has five other seasons above 130 OPS+, Jeter doesn't have one other year above 130.

                        His peak isn't as good, his rates would be worse, and his fielding, oh his fielding.

                        Derek Jeter can't hold Barry Larkin's jockstrap in fielding. Barry Larkin was a tremendous defensive shortstop in his peak, he was trmendous over his career. All around greatness. Jeter is, well, horrible out there. I have no other way of phrasing it. He'd probably make top 10 given those numbers, but he's not moving ahead of Larkin.

                        Larkin's OPS+ right now is only 5 points lower than Jeter, and Larkin has already retired and been through his entire decline phase while Jeter is still in his prime. It is clear that by the time Jeter's playing days are over his OPS+ will be about the same or even lower.

                        Also, Larkin has had way more impressive seasons. Jeter did have one truly great hitting year in 1999, when he had a 161 OPS+, a .325 EqA, and drove in 102 runs. Barry Larkin has a truly great offensive season to match that in 1996, when he had a 154 OPS+, a .326 EqA, and hit 33 home runs.

                        Outside of his great 1999, Jeter's offensive prowess really isn't as great. His career high in OPS+ outside of that was 127 in 2003. Larkin has had two seasons over 140 OPS+, and six seasons above 130. Much more great offensive seasons.

                        Jeter's main advantages I suppose most people would claim is that 1.He is considered to be greater and is more famous, 2.He is a great clutch player, adn 3.He has been money in the postseason. I'll address each of those.

                        1.He is considered to be greater and is more famous

                        He definitely is more famous, but that doesn't make him a better ballplayer. If Jeter had played his whole career in Cincinnati instead of New York he wouldn't be any more celebrated than Larkin is.

                        Is he considered to be greater? Maybe, but evidence doesn't necessarily support it. Larkin won an MVP award in 1995, Jeter has never won one. We all know MVP awards tend to come from players on great teams, and despite the fact Jeter has played on tremendous teams his whole career he has never won the award.

                        Jeter has been an All Star six times, or 60% of his 10 full seasons (full season defined as playing 100+ games). Larkin has been an All Star 12 times, or 80% of his full seasons (I counted 1997 as a full season because he did make the All Star Game).

                        Those are the normal methods used to determine how a player was thought of in his time. Seem to favor Larkin rather than Jeter.

                        2.Jeter is a great clutch player

                        Jeter over his career has batted .324 with men on base and .304 with no men on. But, he has hit for less power with men on base with a .470 SLG% with no one on and a a .446 SLG with men on. He has hit one HR per 29 ABs with the bases empty, one HR per 45 ABs with men on base. He has hit slightly worse (.313) with runners in scoring position than overall (.315).

                        Overall, it is hard to see how Jeter has been a particularly great clutch player.

                        Larkin over his career has hit 27 points higher with men on base than with them empty. He has also hit for more power with men on base, with a SLG 28 points higher. He has hit 4 points worse with RISP, but his OBP is higher.

                        It's hard to see how Jeter has been a better clutch player than Larkin

                        3.Jeter has been money in the postseason

                        Jeter has obviously had more postseason games played than Larkin, so it is unfair to compare their raw totals.

                        Larkin has batted .338/.397/.465 in the postseason. His BA is 43 points high than in the regular season, his OBP is 26 points higher, and his SLG is 21 points higher. He has been significantly better in the postseason than in the regular season.

                        Jeter has batted .307/.379/.463 in the postseason. His BA and OBP are 7 points worse than they are in the regular season, and his SLG is two points higher. Hard to see how he has hit any better there than in the regular season.

                        But here's some revealing information for you:

                        In his entire post-season career, a total of 99 games spread over eight seasons, Derek Jeter is a .210/.355/.306 hitter with runners in scoring position and a .245/.345/.329 hitter with men on base. He is a .176/.263/.323 hitter in "close and late" situations. Jeter has actually been incredibly "un-clutch" in the postseason.

                        Why Larkin has never gotten respect for what he is (an all time great) is beyond me. The fact Jeter has been considered better is an all out crime.

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                        • #27
                          What's the point of reposting that? That's more comparing Larkin to Jeter than establishing a good Hall case for Larkin...well that is unless you feel that Jeter is the measuring stick for the Hall...

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by abacab
                            Most people on this site consider Larkin a deserving HoFer. If you check the "Baseball Fever Hall of Fame" thread at the top, you'll see that Larkin has already been elected. Whether the actual Hall of Fame voters feel the same way remains to be seen. The lack of support for Alan Trammell doesn't bode well for Larkin, as the two players were similar (though Larkin was beter).
                            Cool, I'll check out the Baseball Fever Hall of Fame and see who you folks consider to be worthy inductees...a real fun idea...because I'm sure we all have arguments with some of the Hall of Fame's selections and non-selections over the years.

                            On the blog, among other things, I plan to post a lot of articles about guys who are either coming up on eligibility or are soon to retire who are borderline, and take a closer look and try to see whether they're worthy or not, and if they'll be elected. I should have an article on Tim Raines ready to go sometime tomorrow.
                            Visit my card site at Mike D's Baseball Card Page.

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                            • #29
                              I would like to see Barry make it some day.
                              I don't think he is a first ballot kind of guy, but I think he at least deserves some consideration.
                              1968 and 1984, the greatest ever.

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                              • #30
                                Larkin has an MVP and was regarded as the best, or one of the top two or three players for a W.S. winning team. Those two factors alone place him at a Sandberg-like level ahead of Grich, Whitaker, etc. in the eyes of voters. Factor in the stellar defense and the several all-star selections (again, ahead of the one and done group) and you have a guy who'll spend no more than three or four years on the ballot.
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