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Did George Gore have a valid Hall of Fame case?

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  • Did George Gore have a valid Hall of Fame case?

    Introducing George Gore:

    Born: May 3, 1857, Saccarrappa, ME
    Died: September 16, 1933, Utica, CA, age 76

    BL/TR; 5'11, 195 lb.

    Another of my favorite 19th Century Players was George Gore, of Anson's Chicago White Stockings. He played CF before Jimmy Ryan.

    Does anyone feel that he had a valid Hall of Fame career? Any validity at all? I realize that Cap Anson putting George on his All Time team is a form of 'nepotism', in that Cap was too partial to his own boys. OK, I'll give you that.

    But did George play well enough to merit any consideration strickly on his own merits?
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Albright's musings post---BB Library bio---BB Reference---AG2004's write-up---Wikipedia

    ----Relative BA-------Rel.Slg.------Rel.Onbase--Rel.ISO-------OPS+---Plate Appearances

    ----115.7 (50th)----113.1 (246th)---122.0 (22nd)----114-----135 (t 104th)-----6,104
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Relative ISO: Some Pre-1920 hitters:

    Gavvy Cravath 217
    Harry Stovey 189
    Joe Jackson 187
    Sam Crawford 183
    Dan Brouthers 178
    Sam Thompson 174
    Roger Connor 172
    Honus Wagner 167
    Ed Delahanty 166
    Tris Speaker 163
    Frank Baker 162
    Ty Cobb 159
    Nap Lajoie 159
    Buck Ewing 154
    Ross Barnes 150
    Pete Browning 141
    Mike 'King' Kelly 138
    Jimmy Ryan 138
    Ned Williamson 135
    Bill Lange 126
    Cap Anson 121
    George Gore 114
    Jesse Burkett 114
    Herman Long 109
    Eddie Collins 103
    Hughie Jennings 101
    Billy Hamilton 0.89
    Willie Keeler 0.84
    John McGraw 0.77
    -------------------------------------------------
    George Gore, Chicago White Stockings CF--2 early baseball cards of George Gore; Notice ball hanging by a string?
    17
    I support George Gore's Hall of Fame case.
    52.94%
    9
    Gore's Hall case falls just a little bit short for me.
    29.41%
    5
    Gore's Hall case falls quite a bit short for me. Definitely NOT a Famer, for me.
    5.88%
    1
    I consider Gore one of the finest, elite players, pre-1900.
    29.41%
    5
    I do NOT consider Gore one of the finest, elite players, pre-1900.
    5.88%
    1
    I consider Gore forgotten today, but over-rated in his day, due to being on a famous team.
    0%
    0
    I wish George Gore received more attention, as one of the excellent players of his day.
    52.94%
    9
    Last edited by Bill Burgess; 01-25-2010, 05:14 AM.

  • #2
    Jim Albright's George Gore 'Musings"

    George Gore

    He averaged 30.91 win shares per 162 games over a career lasting 11.66 full seasons. That means he averaged being a MVP caliber candidate over his career. That win shares per 162 games is also good for sixth place among center fielders. He is 111th all time in black ink and 141st all time in gray ink, both of which are in HOF territory.

    His list of performances among the league leaders is impressive:
    in the top seven in average five times, leading once;
    in the top seven in OBP ten times, leading once;
    in the top ten in slugging percentage seven times, leading once;
    in the top seven in runs scored nine times, leading twice;
    in the top six in runs created five times, leading once; and
    in the top six in walks eight times, leading three times.

    He is the STATS, Inc NL MVP of 1880, leading the league in average, on base percentage, and slugging percentage for the pennant winners. He was a key contributor to six pennant winner and had a career offensive winning percentage of .690.

    Here's a fine analysis by AG2004:
    Note: Seasons up to 1889 are adjusted to 140 games; seasons from 1890 on are adjusted to 154 games.

    1. Was he ever regarded as the best player in baseball? Did anybody, while he was active, ever suggest that he was the best player in baseball?

    I don’t know. He did lead all major league position players in win shares in 1880 and 1885, though.

    2. Was he the best player on his team?

    He led all Chicago position players in win shares in 1880, 1883, and 1885. He was one of the three offensive stars for Chicago during that period, the other two being Cap Anson and King Kelly.

    3. Was he the best player in baseball at his position? Was he the best player in the league at his position?

    He was the top OF in baseball in win shares in 1880, 1883, and 1885, and led baseball’s center fielders in 1881 and 1886 as well. He was among the top three OF in baseball each of those seasons, as well as in 1882. (In 1886, we are adjusting for schedule length; the NL had a 126-game season, but the AA had a 140-game season.)

    4. Did he have an impact on a number of pennant races?

    Gore had 17 win shares in 1882 (28 win shares per 140 games), when Chicago won the pennant by 3 games. He had 30 win shares (38 per 140 games) when Chicago won the title by 2 games in 1885. He had 26 raw WS in 1886 (Chicago won by 2 games) and 32 in 1889 (New York won by 1 game). So Gore had a large impact on several pennant races.

    5. Was he good enough that he could play regularly after passing his prime?

    For a couple of seasons, yes.

    6. Is he the very best baseball player in history who is not in the Hall of Fame?

    No.

    7. Are most players who have comparable statistics in the Hall of Fame?

    By similarity scores: Mike Griffin, Chick Stahl, Dom DiMaggio, Buddy Lewis, Pete Fox, Ginger Beaumont, Jo-Jo Moore, Kip Selbach, Duff Cooley, Jack Tobin. None are in Cooperstown; none are in the BBFHOF. However, none of the ten have an OPS+ above 123; Gore has a career OPS+ of 136.

    Adjusted career WS, contemporary CF: Paul Hines 364, Jimmy Ryan 341, Hugh Duffy 325, George Gore 322, Dummy Hoy 275. Gore is in the region of serious contenders. Later CF with around 322 win shares include Max Carey 351, Richie Ashburn 329, Willie Davis 322, Vada Pinson 321, Edd Roush 314, Jimmy Wynn 305, and Al Oliver 305. This isn’t necessarily BBFHOF territory, although there are several members with career marks between 280 and 300.

    Adjusted best three seasons, 1800s CF: Billy Hamilton 110, GORE 109, Paul Hines 107, Hugh Duffy 103. This is BBFHOF territory for Gore. Later players with around 109 win shares in their peaks include Joe DiMaggio 114, Duke Snider 112, Jimmy Wynn 100, and Wally Berger 100. Gore remains in BBFHOF territory.

    Adjusted best five consecutive seasons: Paul Hines 161, Hugh Duffy 161, GORE 146, Pete Browning 143, Jimmy Ryan 135, George Van Haltren 135. Later CFs with peaks around 146 win shares include Larry Doby 152, Wally Berger 152, Dale Murphy 150, Earl Averill 143, Jimmy Wynn 141, and Cesar Cedeno 140. This is very good company.

    8. Do the player's numbers meet Hall of Fame standards?

    Gore’s black ink mark of 19 is 112th overall, a good sign. He’s a little weak in gray ink, at 125 (143rd overall). His HOF Standards Score of 30.9 ranks him at number 267, which is really low. However, short seasons did contribute to the low score.

    Gore also won 7 Win Shares Gold Gloves. While not a member of Cooperstown, Gore was a member of the very first class of the Hall of Merit. Furthermore, Gore is a member of the BBF Timeline HOF.

    9. Is there any evidence to suggest that the player was significantly better or worse than is suggested by his statistics?

    Gore played in a top hitter’s park during the early 1880s, which inflates his offensive numbers. However, he was also an exceptional defensive player, which isn’t recorded in his offensive stats.

    10. Is he the best player at his position who is eligible for the Hall of Fame?

    I might go with Hugh Duffy instead, but there’s a case for Gore being the best MLB CF outside the BBFHOF.

    11. How many MVP-type seasons did he have? Did he ever win an MVP award? If not, how many times was he close?

    There was no MVP award in Gore’s era, but he led all NL position players in win shares twice. He had three seasons which project to 30+ win shares.

    12. How many All-Star-type seasons did he have? How many All-Star games did he play in? Did most of the players who played in this many All-Star games go into the Hall of Fame?

    There was no such competition in Gore’s day. However, he had ten seasons which project to 20+ win shares. That’s very good for a Hall of Famer.

    13. If this man were the best player on his team, would it be likely that the team could win the pennant?

    Yes, it would be likely.

    14. What impact did the player have on baseball history? Was he responsible for any rule changes? Did he introduce any new equipment? Did he change the game in any way?

    Not that I know of.

    15. Did the player uphold the standards of sportsmanship and character that the Hall of Fame, in its written guidelines, instructs us to consider?

    Allegedly, Chicago released Gore after the 1886 season because he caroused too much. But that’s the only mark I could find on Gore’s record, and his behavior doesn’t seem to have caused any trouble elsewhere. So I think he upheld the standards.

    CONCLUSION: Gore is more than worthy of induction into the BBFHOF.

    Comment


    • #3
      Baseball Library

      George Gore

      Gore was signed by Chicago's Cap Anson after playing for a local New England team in an exhibition against the White Stockings (later the Cubs). In 1880, his second season, Gore won the NL batting crown with a .360 mark (Anson's .337 was second) and also led in slugging percentage (.463). Anson claimed that Gore was too much the playboy, however, and when Chicago lost the postseason championship series with St. Louis, the American Association pennant-winners, Gore was dispatched to the Gothams (later renamed the Giants).
      Gore led the NL in runs scored in 1881-82, and in walks three times. Scoring over 100 runs seven times, with a high of 150 (1886), he finished his career with 1,327 runs in 1,310 games. Gore, Harry Stovey, and Billy Hamilton are the only players (4,000 at-bats) with more runs scored than games. Gore set a ML record on June 25, 1881, when he had seven stolen bases in a game. On July 9, 1885, he hit two doubles and three triples to set a since-tied ML record of five extra-base hits in a game, and he went 6-for-6 on May 7, 1880. He was called Piano Legs for his bulging calf muscles. (JK)

      Comment


      • #4
        AG2004's write-up

        We now turn to George Gore.

        Without the adjustments I made, Gore and Browning would each have one season with 30+ win shares (their peak without any adjustments was 30) and five seasons with 20+ win shares.

        With the adjustments, Gore has three MVP-type seasons and ten All-Star-type seasons. Browning also has three MVP-type seasons, but just six All-Star-type seasons.

        Hugh Duffy would have three MVP-type seasons and nine All-Star type seasons. Jimmy Ryan would have only one MVP-type season and seven All-Star type seasons. Van Haltren would do a little better than Ryan: one MVP-type season and eleven All-Star-type seasons (he also has the necessary win share totals in 1888 and 1890, but he was primarily a pitcher and wasn't an All-Star-type pitcher either year).

        Among those CFs who we have elected, the adjustments give Paul Hines five MVP-type seasons and 10 All-Star type seasons. The voters did the right thing in electing Hines before either Browning or Gore. Finally, Billy Hamilton ended up with six MVP-type seasons and eleven All-Star-type seasons.

        Especially for the 1893-1897 seasons, it seems right to make some adjustment for the 132-game season. The quality of player was higher then than it was in the AA from 1886-1889, but without an adjustment, the players of the 140-game AA seasons gain an advantage.

        Here's how everything stacks up for George Gore. I'm convinced that he's a better choice for the BBFHOF than Pete Browning.

        Case to Consider: GORE, George

        Note: Seasons up to 1889 are adjusted to 140 games; seasons from 1890 on are adjusted to 154 games.

        1. Was he ever regarded as the best player in baseball? Did anybody, while he was active, ever suggest that he was the best player in baseball?

        I don’t know. He did lead all major league position players in win shares in 1880 and 1885, though.

        2. Was he the best player on his team?

        He led all Chicago position players in win shares in 1880, 1883, and 1885. He was one of the three offensive stars for Chicago during that period, the other two being Cap Anson and King Kelly.

        3. Was he the best player in baseball at his position? Was he the best player in the league at his position?

        He was the top OF in baseball in win shares in 1880, 1883, and 1885, and led baseball’s center fielders in 1881 and 1886 as well. He was among the top three OF in baseball each of those seasons, as well as in 1882. (In 1886, we are adjusting for schedule length; the NL had a 126-game season, but the AA had a 140-game season.)

        4. Did he have an impact on a number of pennant races?

        Gore had 17 win shares in 1882 (28 win shares per 140 games), when Chicago won the pennant by 3 games. He had 30 win shares (38 per 140 games) when Chicago won the title by 2 games in 1885. He had 26 raw WS in 1886 (Chicago won by 2 games) and 32 in 1889 (New York won by 1 game). So Gore had a large impact on several pennant races.

        5. Was he good enough that he could play regularly after passing his prime?

        For a couple of seasons, yes.

        6. Is he the very best baseball player in history who is not in the Hall of Fame?

        No.

        7. Are most players who have comparable statistics in the Hall of Fame?

        By similarity scores: Mike Griffin, Chick Stahl, Dom DiMaggio, Buddy Lewis, Pete Fox, Ginger Beaumont, Jo-Jo Moore, Kip Selbach, Duff Cooley, Jack Tobin. None are in Cooperstown; none are in the BBFHOF. However, none of the ten have an OPS+ above 123; Gore has a career OPS+ of 136.

        Adjusted career WS, contemporary CF: Paul Hines 364, Jimmy Ryan 341, Hugh Duffy 325, George Gore 322, Dummy Hoy 275. Gore is in the region of serious contenders. Later CF with around 322 win shares include Max Carey 351, Richie Ashburn 329, Willie Davis 322, Vada Pinson 321, Edd Roush 314, Jimmy Wynn 305, and Al Oliver 305. This isn’t necessarily BBFHOF territory, although there are several members with career marks between 280 and 300.

        Adjusted best three seasons, 1800s CF: Billy Hamilton 110, GORE 109, Paul Hines 107, Hugh Duffy 103. This is BBFHOF territory for Gore. Later players with around 109 win shares in their peaks include Joe DiMaggio 114, Duke Snider 112, Jimmy Wynn 100, and Wally Berger 100. Gore remains in BBFHOF territory.

        Adjusted best five consecutive seasons: Paul Hines 161, Hugh Duffy 161, GORE 146, Pete Browning 143, Jimmy Ryan 135, George Van Haltren 135. Later CFs with peaks around 146 win shares include Larry Doby 152, Wally Berger 152, Dale Murphy 150, Earl Averill 143, Jimmy Wynn 141, and Cesar Cedeno 140. This is very good company.

        8. Do the player's numbers meet Hall of Fame standards?

        Gore’s black ink mark of 19 is 112th overall, a good sign. He’s a little weak in gray ink, at 125 (143rd overall). His HOF Standards Score of 30.9 ranks him at number 267, which is really low. However, short seasons did contribute to the low score.

        Gore also won 7 Win Shares Gold Gloves. While not a member of Cooperstown, Gore was a member of the very first class of the Hall of Merit. Furthermore, Gore is a member of the BBF Timeline HOF.

        9. Is there any evidence to suggest that the player was significantly better or worse than is suggested by his statistics?

        Gore played in a top hitter’s park during the early 1880s, which inflates his offensive numbers. However, he was also an exceptional defensive player, which isn’t recorded in his offensive stats.

        10. Is he the best player at his position who is eligible for the Hall of Fame?

        I might go with Hugh Duffy instead, but there’s a case for Gore being the best MLB CF outside the BBFHOF.

        11. How many MVP-type seasons did he have? Did he ever win an MVP award? If not, how many times was he close?

        There was no MVP award in Gore’s era, but he led all NL position players in win shares twice. He had three seasons which project to 30+ win shares.

        12. How many All-Star-type seasons did he have? How many All-Star games did he play in? Did most of the players who played in this many All-Star games go into the Hall of Fame?

        There was no such competition in Gore’s day. However, he had ten seasons which project to 20+ win shares. That’s very good for a Hall of Famer.

        13. If this man were the best player on his team, would it be likely that the team could win the pennant?

        Yes, it would be likely.

        14. What impact did the player have on baseball history? Was he responsible for any rule changes? Did he introduce any new equipment? Did he change the game in any way?

        Not that I know of.

        15. Did the player uphold the standards of sportsmanship and character that the Hall of Fame, in its written guidelines, instructs us to consider?

        Allegedly, Chicago released Gore after the 1886 season because he caroused too much. But that’s the only mark I could find on Gore’s record, and his behavior doesn’t seem to have caused any trouble elsewhere. So I think he upheld the standards.

        CONCLUSION: Gore is more than worthy of induction into the BBFHOF.

        Comment


        • #5
          wikipedia article

          wikipedia article

          George F. Gore (May 3, 1857 - September 16, 1933) was an American center fielder in Major League Baseball who played fourteen seasons for the Chicago White Stockings (1879-1886), New York Giants (1887-89, 1891-1892), and St. Louis Browns (1892) in the National League, and the New York Giants of the Players League (1890). Born in Saccarappa, Maine, Gore won the National League batting title in 1880 while playing for Chicago. He died at age 76 in Utica, New York.

          Gore played with Chicago from 1879 to 1886, and after he was sold by the club after the 1886 season, for drinking, longtime writer Henry Chadwick said Gore "cannot play in harmony with Captain and Manager Anson, and Mr. Spalding has wisely released a discontented player whose skill as a fielder, batter, and base runner was offset by his unpleasant relations with the team captain."

          Weeks after Gore's contract was sold to the New York Giants, Chicago writer Harry Palmer wrote that whenever Gore "failed to play ball for all he was worth, Anson has reprimanded him." Socially, Palmer added, Anson says “Gore is all right. As an instance of their friendly relations, Anson says Gore applied to him for work this Winter [sic], and the big Chicago captain promised him employment on the toboggan slides at the White Stocking Park whenever he wanted it."

          In 1888, after seeing him in street clothes during a home game, the New York Star called him "'Budweiser' Gore."

          In 1894, a judge granted a divorce to his wife. Married since 1882, she had accused him of living in 1891 and into 1892 with a Florence "Florilla" Sinclaire "as his wife, and that they [Gore and Sinclaire] lived as man and wife in One Hundred and Twenty-ninth street" [sic] in New York City. Gore denied his wife’s charge of having had intimate relations with Sinclaire.

          In his 1900 book A Ball Player's Career, Anson said Gore was a good player. Also, "Women and wine brought about his downfall, however, and the last time that I saw him in New York he was broken down, both in heart and pocket, and willing to work at anything that would yield him the bare necessities of life."

          In 1933, months before his death at age 76, Gore told a reporter, "I haven't seen a sick day in seventy-five years, and I feel as good today as I did thirty years ago. I can't get around like I used to, but I still am able to walk three or four miles daily. That keeps me in good shape. I eat three hearty meals a day and my favorite diversion now is playing pinocle. I play it every night. It's great sport for us old-timers."

          Comment


          • #6
            I pretty much think that Gore is a Hall of Famer. He did play in a watered down league and had only 6104 PA (equivalent to about 11 or 12 seasons). Those are a couple of reasons why he might be considered borderline. but for me he's borderline but in (I favor peak over longevity). However, I might change my mind if Sockeye was around.

            RAA Adjusted for All Time (RAAAAT for short)

            389

            RAAAAT for Keith Hernadez: 607

            See, RAAAAT proves that Hernandez is the best (I love RAAAAT now)
            Originally posted by Cougar
            "Read at your own risk. Baseball Fever shall not be responsible if you become clinically insane trying to make sense of this post. People under 18 must read in the presence of a parent, guardian, licensed professional, or Dr. Phil."

            Comment


            • #7
              I like George Gore's Keltner List. Count me in for thinking he's a HoF-caliber player (as are Jimmy Ryan, Bob Caruthers, and Pete Browning).
              "They put me in the Hall of Fame? They must really be scraping the bottom of the barrel!"
              -Eppa Rixey, upon learning of his induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

              Motafy (MO-ta-fy) vt. -fied, -fying 1. For a pitcher to melt down in a big game situation; to become like Guillermo Mota. 2. The transformation of a good pitcher into one of Guillermo Mota's caliber.

              Comment


              • #8
                I could be persuaded to support Gore.

                Gore's Offensive Winning Percentage for his career is .691. That's pretty good for a man regarded as a top defensive center fielder; it would put Gore close to the middle of the HOF. Maybe a little bit in the bottom half, but not that much.

                The key to Gore's selection is his defense. If he was a lousy defensive player who never got moved out of CF, that's one story. If he was the tremendous defensive player he has been reputed to be, well, he's got a pretty good case under those circumstances.
                "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

                Comment

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