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Charlie Buffinton

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  • Charlie Buffinton

    Over 11 years in the big leagues, Charlie Buffinton went 233-152 (.605 WP) with a 2.96 career ERA. In seven of those years, he won over 20 games. He won over 25 games 5 times and over 40 games once. In 1891, he led the league in both winning percentage and WHIP. Although he never led the league in wins, he was in the top 10 eight out of the eleven seasons he played. He was in the top 10 in strikeouts seven times and shutouts six times.

    His career overall was wonderful, but there are a few seasons that really stick out to me:

    1884: He went 48-16 with a 2.15 ERA, while the league ERA was 2.89. He finished second in strikeouts with 417.

    1888: He went 28-17 with a 1.91 ERA, beating the league ERA by over a point.

    1891: He went 29-9 with a 2.55 ERA, again beating the league ERA by over a point. As stated earlier, he also led the league in WHIP and WP.

    What I find pretty impressive is that he was also used as an outfielder/first baseman for a notable amount of time (over 200 games). As a batter, he hit .245 in 2214 career at-bats.

    He has good grey ink at 160, which is a little below the average Hall of Famer's. HOF monitor says he is a "likely Hall of Famer". The six pitchers most statistically similar to him are in the Hall: Clark Griffith, Stan Coveleski, Carl Hubbell, Joe McGinnity, Juan Marichal and Catfish Hunter. The other four - Silver King, Freddie Fitzsimmons, Wilbur Cooper and Kevin Brown - were all great pitchers in their own right.

    As a side note, some claim it is Buffinton who invented the curveball, not Candy Cummings.

    So, should Charlie Buffinton be in the Hall of Fame?

  • #2
    I say YES, but he may be more of a MAYBE.


    • #3

      Take away 1891 and he was just another middle of the pack short career pitcher in an era that was pre-modern pitching distance, pre-mound.


      • #4
        Not to go off-topic (although that's exactly what I'm doing), but does anyone know why Buffinton (who was originally born Buffington) dropped the g in his name?


        • #5
          I think Buffinton is one of the great underrated pitchers of all time. 233 wins, an ERA under 3, and I think most fans would just stare at you blankly if you said his name.

          That said, he's only got an ERA+ of 115 and only twice went above 140. Given the brevity of his career -- and the fact that his two worst years (1885 & 1886, when he was awful, though it looks like he was hurt in '86) break up what ought to be his peak -- I don't think he's quite HoF material. He was pretty good though.
          Last edited by Aqua; 03-26-2008, 06:49 AM.


          • #6
            Buffinton had a real nice career, but so did Silver King, Tony Mullane, Jim McCormick,Will White, Gus Weyhing, Jack Stivetts, Bob Caruthers, and Larry Corcoran.
            Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball


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