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Frank Chance's most similar: Who Deserves Induction?

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  • Frank Chance's most similar: Who Deserves Induction?

    Of the players most statistically similar to Frank Chance, the following are not in the Hall of Fame:

    Jack Smith
    Jimmy Wolf
    Mike Kreevich
    Fred Schulte
    Duff Cooley
    John Titus
    Sam Mertes
    Darryl Hamilton
    Johnny Hopp

    Which, if any, deserve induction into the Hall of Fame?

    Here are some notable achievements for each, from Baseball-Reference.com:

    Smith:

    100 Runs Scored Seasons: 1 (1922)

    Wolf:

    100 RBI Seasons: 1 (1887)
    100 Runs Scored Seasons: 2 (1887 & 1890)
    AA Batting Average Leader: 1890
    AA Hits Leader: 1890
    AA Total Bases Leader: 1890
    AA At-Bats Leader: 1884

    Kreevich:

    AL All-Star (1938)
    AL Triples Leader (1937)

    Schulte:

    100 Runs Scored Seasons: 2 (1931-1932)

    Cooley:

    100 Runs Scored Seasons: 3 (1895 & 1897-1898)

    Titus:

    NL Hit by Pitch Leader: 1909

    Mertes:

    NL Doubles Leader (1903)
    NL RBI Leader (1903)
    100 RBI Seasons: 2 (1903 & 1905)
    100 Runs Scored Seasons: 1 (1903)
    50 Stolen Bases Seasons: 1 (1905)
    Won a World Series with the New York Giants in 1905

    Hamilton:

    Fielding percentage, outfielder, career, .995

    Hopp:

    NL All-Star (1946)
    100 Runs Scored Seasons: 1 (1944)
    Won four World Series with the St. Louis Cardinals (1942 & 1944) and the New York Yankees (1950 & 1951)

    Those guys don't have very impressive resumes, do they? I guess it helps to be part of a famed double play combination when you have comps like that.
    20
    Jack Smith
    0.00%
    0
    Jimmy Wolf
    0.00%
    0
    Mike Kreevich
    0.00%
    0
    Fred Schulte
    0.00%
    0
    Duff Cooley
    0.00%
    0
    John Titus
    0.00%
    0
    Sam Mertes
    0.00%
    0
    Darryl Hamilton
    0.00%
    0
    Johnny Hopp
    0.00%
    0
    All of the above
    0.00%
    0
    None of the above
    100.00%
    20
    Last edited by Cowtipper; 02-20-2008, 09:56 AM.

  • #2
    Chance belongs in the Hall, but as a manager. I suspect that is leaking over into his selection as a player, though.
    Seen on a bumper sticker: If only closed minds came with closed mouths.
    Some minds are like concrete--thoroughly mixed up and permanently set.
    A Lincoln: I don't think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by jalbright View Post
      Chance belongs in the Hall, but as a manager. I suspect that is leaking over into his selection as a player, though.
      Chance is really kind of a hybrid selection. He was a player-manager of a great team, and he managed the Cubs to four (4) pennants and two (2) World Championships. Had he done this with different teams over a longer period of time, he would not have been as memorable. But he was also a player-manager, and while his career was not the longest, he was with a very, very memorable Cub team.

      Chance, the player, is quite underrated. His numbers are superficially unimpressive, but he posted an OWP of over .700 five years in a row. That's what you want in a first baseman, plus he was a super defensive first baseman with exceptional range factors in an era where that mattered more. His nickname, the "Peerless Leader" wasn't for nothing; he LED a great team to victory, more than any other Cub. (The Cubs were the first truly great team of the 20th century, but later Cub futility seems to have obscured this.)

      Although his case is a bit of a hybrid, Frank Chance belongs enshrined in the HOF. His contribution to baseball was great, both as a player and as a manager, and while his hybrid role is now a thing of the past, it was an extremely valuable and effective role at the time Chance played and managed. The statistical arguments don't always fit with Chance, and his managerial record may, or may not, have been enough to stand on its own. But the Hall of Fame would be incomplete without Frank Chance in it; he's the kind of player; indeed, the kind of FIGURE that the HOF exists to honor.
      "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


      • #4
        None of these guys belong, but I think Wildfire Schulte is certainly heads and shoulders above the rest of the names.
        "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


        • #5
          Originally posted by Classic View Post
          None of these guys belong, but I think Wildfire Schulte is certainly heads and shoulders above the rest of the names.
          Teammate "Wildfire" Schulte played a-half-and-eleven-and-a-half seasons with the Cubs including all six-and-a-half under Frank Chance as manager. He is Frank Schulte, not Fred who is listed here.

          Only nine of Frank Chance's ten most similar player are listed and the omission is instructive. The number one "most similar batter" is Billy Southworth and he is a Hall of Famer, to be inducted as a manager this year. Southworth was a good player. Chance was a much better player at his peak, but he didn't play a lot and his peak wasn't long.

          Probably John Titus and maybe Sam Mertes were better players than the others on Frank Chance's most similar list. They achieved those similar batting records when Chance did, during the pits of the deadball era (Titus), or only a few years earlier (Mertes).

          Comment


          • #6
            --Chance is an unusual case. He WAS a great player, but he had a very short career and it was all in a very difficult environment for hitters. Had he played a career of similar quality but more significant quanity he would belong striclty as a player, but as it is he would not be there had he not been the player-manager of that Cubs dynasty. It is not surprising that his "most similar" - who are not really that similar - are all clearly undeserving of Coopertown - or even being discussed in this forum.

            Comment

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