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Frank Chance's most similar: Who Deserves Induction?

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  • leecemark
    replied
    --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.

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  • Paul Wendt
    replied
    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).

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

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  • Fuzzy Bear
    replied
    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.

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  • jalbright
    replied
    Chance belongs in the Hall, but as a manager. I suspect that is leaking over into his selection as a player, though.

    Leave a comment:


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

    20
    Jack Smith
    0.00%
    0
    Jimmy Wolf
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    0
    Mike Kreevich
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    0
    Fred Schulte
    0.00%
    0
    Duff Cooley
    0.00%
    0
    John Titus
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    0
    Sam Mertes
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    0
    Darryl Hamilton
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    0
    Johnny Hopp
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    0
    All of the above
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    None of the above
    100.00%
    20
    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.
    Last edited by Cowtipper; 02-20-2008, 09:56 AM.

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