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  • Modern Baseball Committee Announced

    Hall of Famers George Brett, Rod Carew and Dennis Eckersley are among seven holdovers. Former Kansas City Royals owner David Glass, former New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson and former Elias Sports Bureau executive Steve Hirdt also are holdovers from the committee that elected Jack Morris and Alan Trammell two years ago.

    Newcomers include Hall of Famers Eddie Murray and Ozzie Smith; former Boston president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski; former general managers Walt Jocketty, Doug Melvin and Terry Ryan; and media members Bill Center, Jack O'Connell and Tracy Ringolsby.

  • #2
    I'm guessing that Ted Simmons gets in, with possibly Lou Whitaker or Dale Murphy. Sadly, with all of these front office people, I'm betting Marvin Miller falls short.

    Comment


    • #3
      Maybe this is the year Marvin Miller gets in? I can't see anyone who would be a hardliner against him. Maybe Glass, though he didn't enter baseball until 1993, 10 years after Miller had left the scene. It does seem like there aren't many players on the committee this year.
      "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

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Chadwick View Post
        Maybe this is the year Marvin Miller gets in? I can't see anyone who would be a hardliner against him. Maybe Glass, though he didn't enter baseball until 1993, 10 years after Miller had left the scene. It does seem like there aren't many players on the committee this year.
        Hope you're right.

        Comment


        • #5
          The five modern execs are going to be more saber-friendly than execs of a previous era would be. Ringolsby favors modern analytics too, and Eckersley has spoken well of them on NESN. I don't have a strong read on the rest, but that's nearly a majority already.

          I doubt they'll elect more than two, just due to the underlying "mathematical mousetrap" in the voting rules, as Joe Posnanski memorably phrased it.

          I'm guessing that if the Miller family doesn't want it, the committee will choose not to pick a fight with them. Firat, there are nine other families, and eight other nominees, that desperately do want it. Second, some kind of counter-demonstration at the induction ceremony is the absolute last thing the Hall's suits want.

          That leaves the nine players. I don't see an obvious voting bloc for any one guy like there was for Baines last year, so I'll assume there won't be any unusual groupthink dynamics that come to pass.

          I think we'll get two of the following six, in rough order of likelihood: Simmons, Whitaker, Evans, Munson, John, Murphy.

          Modern analytics are just too tough on Parker, Mattingly, and Garvey to get around the other guys.

          They are not too favorable to Murphy either, but he's just so well-liked, a little like Baines was, plus Murphy's two MVPs will carry a lot of weight with the traditionalists.

          John is the only pitcher, which I suspect will work in his favor, & he's got the intangible bonus of the surgery which could give him a boost. But, as has been pointed out copiously, John was basically a pretty good pitcher who lasted forever, and as such he really lacks a peak high enough that one can hang the greatness label on it.

          Simmons is the most likely to get 12, because (a) he's painfully, obviously qualified, and (2) he got 11 last time with a committee made up of about half the same people.

          Whitaker & Evans have the most favorable cases through WAR and similar instruments, but Sweet Lou has the advantage of not competing with other (non-1b) infielders, while Dewey could get cannibalized by Cobra & Murph.

          Munson is the hardest to peg. He's got the shortest career, but for obvious reasons that can't be held against him too severely. Both traditional standards & modern analytics are strongly favorable towards him, despite his career brevity, and the Yankee Captain, great-in-the-postseason intangibles should be beneficial. However, the back-of-the-baseball-card numbers just look puny to 21st century eyes; that's a tough thing to overcome.

          The best thing that could happen for Munson is for the committee to get into a debate (such as we've had here) as to whether Simmons or Munson was a better catcher, and for that to logroll into an "If Simmons, then Munson" type of conclusion.

          Comment


          • #6
            Nice analysis. My point about Miller was that almost none of the committee members are owners or league executives and that almost none of them were actively involved in MLB when Miller was head of the MLBPA. None of them would have a personal grudge against Miller's success. The closest may be Glass who may have a dim view of unions more generally given his pre-baseball background.
            "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

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Chadwick View Post
              Nice analysis. My point about Miller was that almost none of the committee members are owners or league executives and that almost none of them were actively involved in MLB when Miller was head of the MLBPA. None of them would have a personal grudge against Miller's success. The closest may be Glass who may have a dim view of unions more generally given his pre-baseball background.
              Thank you.

              Yes, I got your point about no one having a personal grudge against Miller, other than perhaps Glass, and I agree.

              Further, I believe this is the first committee iteration considering Miller where that can confidently be said to be the case. Usually there are more owners and/or seasoned execs that date back to the 60s/70s/80s Miller heyday. Jerry Reinsdorf, a fiercely anti-union owner, from last year's committee and others before, is the first to spring to mind, but there are definitely many more.

              Comment


              • #8
                Just a quick add-on to Cougar's excellent post above specifically on Munson. Jeter was the Captain that took over from Munson's Captain status (after a lengthy period without a captain). It may be a Yankee sentiment this year, although I don't think Mattingly will get the same stage as Jeter. I think sometimes the narrative writes itself and to not over complicate some of the minutia. The stats are only there to tell a story and it needs to be a great story. This isn't meant to undermine all of the stats that we cherish...hope that makes sense. Personally I'd be okay with 8 of 9 of the players going in, and probably so will most of the voters, so then it becomes how do we tell a story for 2020. So if you ask how do you whittle it down...I think that's how it happens. They will then throw off one vote each for a player to make sure they have a better chance of keeping their guy on the ballot for the next time around.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Cougar View Post
                  Whitaker & Evans have the most favorable cases through WAR and similar instruments, but Sweet Lou has the advantage of not competing with other (non-1b)
                  And now, at this point in time, the Trammell association is a point in Whitaker's favor as well.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I'm glad to see that the players listed in the OP are exclusively from the American League, with the sole exception of Ozzie Smith. They would all have played with or against Simmons and all, but Smith, would have played against Whitaker. This may also help Dewey.
                    "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

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The fact that Joe Morgan and Tony LaRussa are not on the committee is already a huge win. Neither of those two should be anywhere near the decision making process when it comes to who belongs and who doesn't.

                      There will be a lot of pressure places on the VC this year and next year to elect people so there there will be a meaningful induction ceremony, so I expect 2 from this group to be elected. The two who I think have the best chance are Simmons and Whitaker.

                      Ranked in order of likelihood of induction based on who is voting this time around:

                      1. Ted Simmons
                      2. Lou Whitaker
                      3. Thurman Munson
                      4. Don Mattingly
                      5. Dale Murphy
                      6. Steve Garvey
                      7. Dave Parker
                      8. Dwight Evans
                      9. Tommy John
                      10. Marvin Miller

                      Mattingly and Murphy are still very popular and of the ballplayers voting, 3 saw Mattingly play and 1 saw Murphy play frequently.

                      Garvey has his warts. Evans and John just don't have the numbers and most of those voting are likely to take his family's wishes into consideration.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I have wondered if Mattingly's continued presence in MLB as a manager could redound to his favor somewhat.

                        Probably not...I can't think of a very good reason why it should.

                        But in the past, former players who remain in the game or otherwise in the public eye seem to do a little bit better than those who just fade into a quiet retirement.

                        Mattingly has been a successful manager. He won several division titles with the Dodgers, even if his teams had trouble advancing much in the postseason. Now he's losing badly with Miami, but the love child of John McGraw & Joe McCarthy couldnt get to .500 with that motley crew.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by henrich View Post
                          Just a quick add-on to Cougar's excellent post above specifically on Munson. Jeter was the Captain that took over from Munson's Captain status (after a lengthy period without a captain). It may be a Yankee sentiment this year, although I don't think Mattingly will get the same stage as Jeter. I think sometimes the narrative writes itself and to not over complicate some of the minutia. The stats are only there to tell a story and it needs to be a great story. This isn't meant to undermine all of the stats that we cherish...hope that makes sense. Personally I'd be okay with 8 of 9 of the players going in, and probably so will most of the voters, so then it becomes how do we tell a story for 2020. So if you ask how do you whittle it down...I think that's how it happens. They will then throw off one vote each for a player to make sure they have a better chance of keeping their guy on the ballot for the next time around.
                          I thought someone else was going to catch this, but it hasn't happened, so...

                          There were several Yankee Captains between Munson & Jeter.

                          Graig Nettles was named captain after an appropriate waiting period of 2+ years following Munson's death. After Nettles was traded to San Diego, Willie Randolph & Ron Guidry were named co-captains after another 2 year vacancy. Both left the Yankees after the 1988 season; there was another 2 year vacancy, and then Don Mattingly was elevated to captain. Mattingly retired after 1995, and there was a 7 season vacancy until Jeter was named captain in 2003. The role has not been filled since Jeter's retirement.

                          There was a decades-long vacancy in the captaincy between Lou Gehrig's forced retirement due to terminal illness and Munson's being named captain in 1976; that was probably what was being recollected.

                          Prior to Gehrig, there was a ten-year vacancy, probably due to Babe Ruth's simultaneous dominance & utter incompatibility with a formal leadership role (they did give it a try in 1922, but it pretty quickly didn't work out). It's no coincidence that Gehrig wasn't named captain until Ruth left the team.

                          From 1903-1925 several different players filled the role, including, rather dubiously, Hal Chase. At that time, I believe the captain's role was a bit more formalized, with some expectations for enforcing training and discipline.

                          The captaincy is mostly, if not entirely, symbolic in its modern incarnation; I suppose the captain deals with the press a bit more, or at least Mattingly & Jeter did, but that would probably have happened with or without the formal designation.

                          The following is pulled from Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...nkees_captains or https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_New_York_Yankees_captains:

                          -------------------

                          Edit: The table isn't posting correctly for whatever reason; just click the links if you're interested.
                          Last edited by Cougar; 12-03-2019, 03:12 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Cougar View Post
                            I have wondered if Mattingly's continued presence in MLB as a manager could redound to his favor somewhat.

                            Probably not...I can't think of a very good reason why it should.
                            If he'd remained in LA and won a World Series or two, heck yeah it would.
                            "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

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Chadwick View Post
                              If he'd remained in LA and won a World Series or two, heck yeah it would.
                              Oh, sure, but that didn't happen.

                              Dave Roberts has done an excellent job, but I nevertheless thought at the time that Mattingly getting the boot from the Dodger front office after three straight division titles was a pretty raw deal.

                              I guess they just wanted to get their own guy in there, and/or Mattingly, who is kinda old school by reputation, was resistant to having lineups & game strategy dictated from the luxury box.

                              I'm sure there were factors involved that weren't public knowledge. Maybe he was clashing with ownership, or had lost the clubhouse somehow.

                              His choice to go to the Marlins puzzled me too, because it seemed from the outset to be a thankless job doomed to failure. I'd think he could have just waited for a better job to open...there's probably 29 possibilities.

                              On the other hand, when he took the job, they did have Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich, and Jose Fernandez; that's a serious core of young talent. It was clear even then, though, that Miami wasn't going to be able to keep all those guys once the clock ran out on team control. (No one could have seen the boat accident coming, of course.)

                              Perhaps he just needed the money. More often than not, the simplest explanations are the correct ones.

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