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Barry Larkin

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  • Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan
    replied
    I think Larkin will get between 30-40% this year and will gradually turn up from there. People have to remember that Larkin never won many friends in the media. He was similar to Barry Sanders; rarely ever gave interview (when has anybody EVER seen a Barry Sanders inteview?) and wasn't the most friendly to media brass. And like Sanders, he kept a very low profile.

    I think Larkin will eventually get elected in a year with a weak voting roster. Unfrtunately for him, that may be a few years off. If I had to guess, I'd say 6-10 years. As far as middle infielders go, Alomar will be getting in well before him, as he should, since he was the better player on aggregate. Jeff Kent might too for that matter, despite the fact he isn't eligiblr for another 4 years.
    Last edited by Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan; 12-17-2009, 08:18 AM.

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    the importance of 5% - a lot may happen in 15 years

    Originally posted by Los Bravos View Post
    That covers it all, quite nicely.
    At worst Larkin will be renominated annually like Trammell and Raines.

    Over at Kevin Brown,
    Originally posted by Los Bravos View Post
    ... Just because Greinke and Lincecum (justly) won the Cys this year does not mean we're going to get any sort of full scale revisitation of HOF cases from the recent past, viewed now through a sabermetric lens. Very few in the BBWAA want to start a process that ends up with Brown, Steib and other stat analysis darlings in the Hall.
    Renomination by 5% support is important because the BBWAA electorate changes gradually, at least. Furthermore the Board might revise BBWAA control without restoring eligibility to those who fall below 5% support ("killed" by the writers).

    For Larkin, Edgar Martinez, and others in the class of 2010, the window under current rules is 2010-2024.

    At least the BBWAA changes gradually, as younger members put in their ten years and older members die; also as some retire from covering baseball and choose not to continue their professional society memberships. Fourteen years from now the cumulative change may be significant on a crucial dimension such as degree of reliance on statistical analysis.

    The BBWAA electorate might change more quickly than in the past. Print newspapers are in trouble economically. Many will not make an effective transition to internet business or they will cut sports staff if they do. Some will survive in print only by cutting staff at least by attrition. Already the BBWAA has admitted some internet writers who are not affiliated with print newspapers. There may be further liberalization to follow, perhaps to admit writers who are not on a beat. (Revisit the Rob Neyer flap.)

    The NBHOFM might revise the BBWAA monopoly. Probably the Board will do that if the BBWAA becomes evidently marginal, which will happen if the BBWAA is too conservative and the future of newspapers is too bleak. Of course the BBWAA will try to remain central rather than become marginal, by changing just enough as the world changes.
    Last edited by Paul Wendt; 12-17-2009, 07:44 AM.

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  • Los Bravos
    replied
    Originally posted by AstrosFan View Post
    Larkin's an easy Hall of Famer. He hit like a Hall of Fame shortstop, so that should be good enough, but he was also a terrific fielder and baserunner. He was the very definition of a complete, high percentage player. He has the numbers of a Hall of Famer, but furthermore, he passes the test of the emphasis on the "Fame" part. Larkin was regarded as a genuine superstar in his day. It would be sheer absurdity to keep him out.
    That covers it all, quite nicely.

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    Data available (done)

    Originally posted by brett View Post
    If you get a chance, could I see all the hall of merit second basemen, shortstops and third basemen, and their "score?" plus if they are "short high peak" inductees.
    Yes, except for the latter assessment. I will say rashly that the eight "Negro Leaguers" at those positions (two 3b, five ss, one 2b as classified by the HOM) include seven with long to very long careers, none medium, and Dobie Moore short.

    I will re-post a data table recently described at the Hall of Merit (#10, 70, 72). That thread is mainly discussion of overall ratings systems with participation by Sean Smith, Tom Tango, and Dan Rosenheck.

    :

    add:
    This 1583 x 25 table in csv format is attached at "Data available" (selected Rankings and Ratings for 1583 players)

    Columns 8-16 (Excel H-P) give Hall of Merit data, the results of special ranking elections and the three annual elections.
    - 8-10, ranking all HOMers within fielding position
    - 11-12, ranking all who are not in Cooperstown within eligibility groups
    - 14-16, annual elections 2010 2009 2008

    add add:
    If and when I provide more documentation, that will be at the Data thread (bold).
    Last edited by Paul Wendt; 12-17-2009, 06:48 AM.

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  • brett
    replied
    Originally posted by Paul Wendt View Post
    brett says of Larkin,

    I hope so, because there's George Wright and Jack Glasscock before Jennings, and there are five shortstops from the Negro Leagues in the Hall of Merit. (My memory says 6 HOM and 3 HOF, but I now count five and two.)

    In the HOM rankings that predate Larkin, Joe Sewell is the 25th and last shortstop. (Pearce, Ward, and Wallace plus the preceding paragraph make ten, plus fifteen eligible shortstops that brett named.) 8 x 25 = 200 but those rankings cover only 171 players at eight regular fielding positions.

    Cooperstown has about 23/160 or 24/162 shortstops, again one-seventh rather than one-eighth of the non-pitchers.
    If you get a chance, could I see all the hall of merit second basemen, shortstops and third basemen, and their "score?" plus if they are "short high peak" inductees.

    I basically have firm spots for about the 120 most "valuable" position players including 19th, 20th and NeLeagueers. I also tend to reserve 10-15 spots for guys who don't make it in MY ratings on value but who make up for SOME lesser value with their "historical place." I really haven't decided on these guys but it might include guys like Sisler, Mazeroski, Dean...

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  • AstrosFan
    replied
    Larkin's an easy Hall of Famer. He hit like a Hall of Fame shortstop, so that should be good enough, but he was also a terrific fielder and baserunner. He was the very definition of a complete, high percentage player. He has the numbers of a Hall of Famer, but furthermore, he passes the test of the emphasis on the "Fame" part. Larkin was regarded as a genuine superstar in his day. It would be sheer absurdity to keep him out.

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    one shortstop in seven?

    brett says of Larkin,
    Originally posted by brett View Post
    ...
    He clearly fits among that group and there should be room for the 17-18 best shortstops even in a fairly small hall. If we put in 15 players from each position that would be 120 which is probably about the size of my hall of fame.

    ... and personally I think that perhaps there should be more places for SS's than say first basemen in the hall of fame.
    I hope so, because there's George Wright and Jack Glasscock before Jennings, and there are five shortstops from the Negro Leagues in the Hall of Merit. (My memory says 6 HOM and 3 HOF, but I now count five and two.)

    In the HOM rankings that predate Larkin, Joe Sewell is the 25th and last shortstop. (Pearce, Ward, and Wallace plus the preceding paragraph make ten, plus fifteen eligible shortstops that brett named.) 8 x 25 = 200 but those rankings cover only 171 players at eight regular fielding positions.

    Cooperstown has about 23/160 or 24/162 shortstops, again one-seventh rather than one-eighth of the non-pitchers.

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    Originally posted by Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan View Post
    ... There were no NL contemporaries which provided any sort of competition to what Larkin was providing. Ergo, Larkin was most certainly helped by all those Silver Slugger awards et al because of the lack of stellar competition at his position, especially in the NL. He wouldn't have been so dominant if he had played in other eras.
    It's much too short to be called an "era" of weak-hitting shortstops.

    Yes, the point is important to anyone who counts Silver Sluggers, which are awarded to one of the regular players at every fielding position in every league-season. No, it isn't important to OPS+ or any other assessment of batting relative to all players in one league-season.

    Otherwise a general warning may be appropriate.
    Some comprehensive measures like TPR, Win Shares, WARP1, etc, assess player-seasons partly by their batting relative to others who play the same regular fielding position in the same season, or in the same league-season. Others don't.

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  • brett
    replied
    Wagner
    Vaughan
    Ripken
    Banks
    Yount
    and A-Rod are all clearly top 100 or better players and out-do the typical HOF SS in career length and or rate of performance. Ozzie played over 2500 games so I'll keep him separate too. Here are then the next 11 and most similar or typical hall of fame shortstops:


    Games played an OPS+
    Larkin: 2180/116
    Cronin: 2124/119
    Trammell: 2293/110
    Reese: 2166/99 (probably 450 games lost)
    Appling: 2422/112
    Dahlen: 2443/109
    Davis: 2368/121
    Jeter: 2138/121
    Jennings 1285/117 (shorter seasons)
    Sewell: 1903/108
    Boudreau: 1646/120

    That list would give a total of 17-18 guys at SS depending on where you place A-Rod.

    He clearly fits among that group and there should be room for the 17-18 best shortstops even in a fairly small hall. If we put in 15 players from each position that would be 120 which is probably about the size of my hall of fame.

    I would put Appling, and Davis at the head of that group.

    Compare Larkin to Boudreau, Sewell, Jennings, Dahlen, Reese, Trammell and Cronin. It would certainly be a case where I consider those guys to be "most truly similar" in terms of productivity, and in which most of them should be in.

    Larkin's 5-6 most "truly similar" players would probably be deserving of the hall of fame, and there really is no one similar to him who is not a legitimate HOF contender.

    Who's the next best SS when you get past this group? If I had to draw a line between this group, and the next group, I'd have to put Larkin above the line.

    and personally I think that perhaps there should be more places for SS's than say first basemen in the hall of fame.

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  • dgarza
    replied
    Originally posted by Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan View Post
    Again, I'm not saying Larkin wasn't a very good player, even fantastic at times (especially on the few occassions when he was relatively injury-free). But what I am saying is that the universal acclaim as the game's best SS at the time had much to do with a down period of good quality shortstops in MLB at the time.
    I understand what you are trying to get at, but I think you need to re-evaluate the his era.

    Larkin played only 414 games in the 80s, so he's not really an 80s player.
    He played 473 games from 2000-4.
    Larkin's really a 90s player (1293 games, 59% of his games).

    The 90s were not a down period for SS offense. At the top end, it was one of the more competitive.

    In the 90s, 3 SS batted OPS+ 120+ (A-Rod, Larkin, Jeter [in that order]).
    Only 1 other decade dupliced this, 1940s (Boudreau, Stephens, Vaughan).

    In the 90s, 4 SS batted OPS+ 110+ (A-Rod, Larkin, Jeter, Valentin [in that order]).
    Only 4 other decades matched or surpassed that.
    2000s - 5 players
    1950s - 4 players
    1940s - 5 players
    1880s - 5 players
    [In the 1970s and 1920s, only 1 SS batted OPS+ 110+.]

    In terms of top-level offense, Larkin played in the top third most competitive decades. Far from a "down period".

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  • Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan
    replied
    Originally posted by Paul Wendt View Post
    People in the 1980s thought that was a time of great-hitting shortstops, with Yount, Trammell, Ripken and finally Larkin.
    Yount ceased being a shortstop after the 1984 season and Trammell best baseball was behind him after the 1990 season, although he had one more good partial one in 1993. Really, besides a three good offensive seasons by Trammell post 1987 (Barry's first full season) and Ripken, the SS position was an offensive black hole until the arrival of Jeter, Garciaparra, Tejada & Rodriguez somewhere around 1996. And even Ripken and a three good seasons by Trammell were both in the American League. There were no NL contemporaries which provided any sort of competition to what Larkin was providing. Ergo, Larkin was most certainly helped by all those Silver Slugger awards et al because of the lack of stellar competition at his position, especially in the NL. He wouldn't have been so dominant if he had played in other eras.

    Again, I'm not saying Larkin wasn't a very good player, even fantastic at times (especially on the few occassions when he was relatively injury-free). But what I am saying is that the universal acclaim as the game's best SS at the time had much to do with a down period of good quality shortstops in MLB at the time.
    Last edited by Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan; 12-16-2009, 12:14 PM.

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  • Freakshow
    replied
    Originally posted by dgarza View Post
    Which makes we wonder how many other 4th best offensive SSs in different era would we consider HOF material.
    How about this 15-year era?

    Highest OPS+, 500 G at SS, 1983-1997
    Code:
    Rk Player      OPS+   G   To  From 
    1 Barry Larkin  122 1401 1986 1997 
    2 John Valentin 119  695 1992 1997 
    3 Cal Ripken    116 2360 1983 1997 
    4 Alan Trammell 116 1585 1983 1996 
    5 Julio Franco  113 1874 1983 1997 
    6 Jeff Blauser  106 1184 1987 1997 
    7 Jay Bell      101 1375 1986 1997 
    8 Tony Fernandez 98 1802 1983 1997 
    9 Dickie Thon    95 1087 1983 1993 
    10 Ozzie Smith   94 1850 1983 1996

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    People in the 1980s thought that was a time of great-hitting shortstops, with Yount, Trammell, Ripken and finally Larkin.

    Originally posted by Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan View Post
    If we start inducting every SS the way they used to 40+years ago when Rizzuto and Boudreau were elected, the Hall won't look very pretty. Larkin was obviously better than those two guys, but how does he stack up against recent contemporaries from the offensive era (1990-2004)? Maybe 4th or 5th best? Maybe that's good enough.
    Boudreau was elected forty years ago by the writers, Reese in the '80s and Rizzuto in the '90s by the good old veterans committee.

    Larkin was an all-star twice before 1990 and during that championship season for the Reds, although not a good year for him as a batter, he was already one of the few who "just may be the best player in baseball." That's what people who didn't like Rickey Henderson or Will Clark or Barry Bonds would say in the early 1990s.

    That was a few years before "the offensive era" and several years before A-Rod and Co.

    "Maybe 4th or 5th best?"
    Edgar Renteria? He may seem to be a lot older than A-Rod and Jeter but they are the same age.

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  • dgarza
    replied
    Originally posted by Greg Maddux's Biggest Fan View Post
    In the case of this era, none of these guys made the HOF. This was a bad offensive period of time so its obvious these guys offensive statistics pale in comparison to other shortstops from other eras.
    Well, the kicker here is that Banks moved to 1B most of the time in this span. But even with Banks, this was a weak SS offensive era.

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  • brett
    replied
    To revisit Larkin, I'll mention that I have a bias against a player when I see a player who's career contains a lot of years with fewer than 130+ games, AND who has a couple of years even under 100 tossed in.

    Larkin averaged 129 over 10 years, 126 games over a 14 year period, 122 over 16 years.

    Its a personal bias. George Brett didn't do much better, but at least he never played fewer than 100 games in a non-strike year, averaged 152 for 3 years, and 135 for 20 years. Brett's problem was that he got injured in his prime and was fairly healthy in the developmental AND in the decline years.

    That being said, Larkin would have averaged 152 for 3 years if we prorate the strike years, and and would have been at 135 for 10 years.

    Larkin hit like a first baseman, (116 OPS+) and stole 350+ bases while playing shortstop for almost 2200 games. He probably was overrated defensively. Maybe overall just a little above average, with a 4-5 really good years,

    but I'll take an average shortstop who hits like a first baseman, runs well, and averages 135 a year in his prime in or near my top 100 players.

    Makes me look at Lou Whitaker though. He had a 116 OPS+ for over 2400 games and was a top 15 all time defensive second baseman. Whitaker also averaged over 145 games (per 162 team games) for 10 years and 142 for 15.
    Last edited by brett; 12-16-2009, 09:00 AM.

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