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  • prospects for Managers and Umpires

    Last fall a committee of 16 including 7 HOF players and 2 HOF managers recently elected managers Billy Southworth and Dick Williams from a ballot of ten managers and umpires. They wil be inducted this summer.

    What may we expect for managers and umpires in the future?
    At the next scheduled election in December 2009 both manager White Herzog and umpire Doug Harvey will be elected unless there is a significant change of committee membership or change of mind by some members, plural.

    Each of the 16 committee members was permitted to vote for four of ten candidates on the ballot. At least ten of them voted for four; only six of 64 possible votes were either cast for the four also-rans or not cast at all. We know that because six candidates scored 58 votes total; we don't know more because support for the also-rans was reported only as "less than three".

    Quoting from wikipedia "Baseball Hall of Fame balloting, 2008":
    Code:
        * Billy Southworth (M) - 13
        * Dick Williams (M) - 13
        * Doug Harvey (U) - 11
        * Whitey Herzog (M) - 11
        * Danny Murtaugh (M) - 6
        * Hank O'Day (U) - 4
        * Davey Johnson (M) - <3
        * Billy Martin (M) - <3
        * Gene Mauch (M) - <3
        * Cy Rigler (U) - <3
    Harvey and Herzog missed only ten votes between them. That was at most six true rejections by people who voted for only three candidates and at least four "no votes" from people who voted for four others. The election of Southworth and Williams frees at least 14 votes on the ballots of people who voted for four, almost certainly including some latent Herzog and Harvey supporters.

    Under the circumstances the showings by Murtaugh and O'Day are quite strong. The Historical Overview Committee should feel obliged to put them back on the next ballot, along with Herzog and Harvey, where it is likely that they too will gain votes freed from Southworth and Williams.

    Even if the committee membership changes significantly, the recent results bode well for Herzog and Harvey, and for managers and umpires in general. The pool from which the Board of Directors appointed the current committee surely includes many others who will be inclined to cast all their votes, as long as they are permitted only four and the ballot comprises a well-chosen top ten.

    --
    Who is likely to be nominated?
    The Overviewers should nominate 2 to 6 new candidates to join 4-8 incumbents. There were four important managers on the preceding (winter 2007) contributors ballot: Williams, Herzog, Martin, and manager-gm Paul Richards. Because he is not a good fit for either of the managers/umpires and executives processes that have replaced the contributors, Richards may be left out now. (He had scored 10 contributor votes to 12 for Martin.)
    There was only one umpire on the preceding contributors ballot: Harvey, the leader in that election with almost 65%.

    This time the Overviewers named 12 from among the 32 managers and umpires whom they had nominated for 2003 or 2007. They did a great job in naming Southworth and Murtaugh and O'Day from the majority (27) who did not previously make the final ballot.

    Although also-ran managers Martin, Mauch, Johnson, and umpire Rigler scored poorly, the resounding support for the four leaders suggests to me that the Overviewers should renominate all 8 incumbents. They should nominate the most prominent manager who retires, dies, or turns 65 by next summer. If there is a second such newly eligible manager, or a comparable umpire, nominate him. If not, return Paul Richards to the ballot.

    add: Someone should survey a large number players and managers with at least moderately long careers in the 1940s-1990s in order to learn who they consider the very best umpires of their times.
    Last edited by Paul Wendt; 04-19-2008, 04:56 PM. Reason: add

  • #2
    I've actually heard of Doug Harvey, unlike many umpires that have been elected in the past. I know he had a long career. I just don't know what criteria they use to elect umpires. There are a handful that were innovators. Otherwise, what makes one umpire better than another? It's already been proven time and time again that longevity alone does not equate to greatness.

    Comment


    • #3
      First, everyone should read Doug Pappas's coverage of the 2003 election.
      "The 2003 Hall of Fame Veterans Committee Vote" by Doug Pappas - superb coverage of the contributors election published in the SABR Business of Baseball Cmte newsletter, by its founder and chairman. (When you have time, read anything by Pappas (deceased) on any subject that remotely interests you.)
      He says that the NL players referred to Harvey as 'god'.


      Second, I say it's telling that Harvey led the pack when Hall of Fame members (and honorees, but the members outnumber the honoree writers and broadcasters) were the Veterans Committee voters. Harvey and Marvin Miller led with more than 60%, in good position to be elected 2009 or 2011. Bowie Kuhn scored about 20% and Walter O'Malley ran about even with his general manager Buzzie Bavasi, near 50%.


      Third, I am on record,
      "Someone should survey a large number players and managers with at least moderately long careers in the 1940s-1990s in order to learn who they consider the very best umpires of their times."

      Indeed, I now see we(THEY) should go further. "Umpire of the Year" is the one award that should most sensibly be determined by vote of players and managers. Unlike awards to players and managers, such as Gold Glove or player of the year, they would not be voting for one of their own, possibly a buddy, but for the best of a group that works mainly as their adversaries. Indeed, the players and managers who beef most are the ones whose opinions I would value most of all. Whom does Earl Weaver recognize as the best, whom even he concedes almost never made the wrong call?

      If we poll players or managers, which umpires will they reward? I believe we know the answer, essentially. They will vote for the ones who call balls and strikes most consistently, the ones who "never" make the wrong safe/out call, the ones who "never" get out of position and thereby interfere with play.

      (Because Baseball employs the umpires, the poll should be administered by some outsider like the old Sporting News.)

      Comment


      • #4
        I am not sure how to judge an umpire, either. It seems to me the best ones are the ones that you hear very little about.
        As for managers, I think it is about time for both Southworth and Williams. I don't know that a lot of argument can be made for too many retired managers. Maybe Herzog and Murtaugh. I would love to see Martin in. But I think the off field escapades will probably keep him out.
        There are a number of current managers who will see Cooperstown one day. I look at Cox, Torre, LaRussa, Leyland, and maybe Pinella being there one day.

        Welcome back ARod. Hope you are a Yankee forever.
        Phil Rizzuto-a Yankee forever.

        Holy Cow

        Comment


        • #5
          Doug Harvey was, by far, the most respected and trusted Umpire of his era in the National League.
          3 6 10 21 29 31 35 41 42 44 47

          Comment


          • #6
            a new cycle begins, 2010/11 to 2012/13

            Hall of Fame election arrangements were revised again at the Board of Directors annual meeting last weekend.
            : Announcement by the NBHOFM, 2010-07-26
            : Discussion in this forum

            Please use that thread for general discussion of the latest rules changes.


            The table gives the results of both 2008 and 2010 elections by the late committee on managers and umpires, with 16 members (see above in this thread).

            Two men were elected in 2008 (blue, Williams and Southworth). Three men were nominated to replace them and Cy Rigler, while seven of the 2008 candidates were renominated. Two men were elected again in 2010 (blue), leaving eight potential holdovers for the next cycle.

            Code:
            2008	2010 (16 votes available, ordered by 2010 results)
            11	15	Doug	Harvey
            11	14	Whitey	Herzog
            6	8	Danny	Murtaugh
            4	8	Hank	O'Day
            	3	Charlie	Grimm
            1	1	Gene	Mauch
            1	1	Billy	Martin
            1	1	Davey	Johnson
            	1	Steve	O'Neill
            	1	Tom	Kelly
            13		Dick	Williams
            13		Billy	Southworth
            1		Cy	Rigler
            '1' means 0 to 2 votes, details not reported.


            How should these nine candidates --Rigler and the eight from 2010-- be allocated to the three eras that the new rules establish?
            : 1973 to date, scheduled for 2010/11 consideration
            : 1947-1972, for 2011/12 (Murtaugh is the heavyweight)
            : 1871-1946, for 2012/13 (is umpire O'Day viable?)
            Last edited by Paul Wendt; 07-27-2010, 09:32 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              I would echo the above post, that Doug Harvey was always mentioned as the best umpire of his time, at least in the National League. The same was true for the most recent previous umpires inducted--Al Barlick from the NL and Bill McGowan and Nestor Chylak from the American League. Players, managers, announcers, often other umpires--all would say that. That probably is the best way to make a judgment.

              I would mention as umpiring possibilities Harry Wendelstedt and Bruce Froemming. Froemming could have trouble because, unlike Harvey, he wasn't personally popular and not always so widely respected. But he set the all-time record for longevity and I think of Alex Rodriguez's line about him, that he's like an old general: when he umpires, you get a game that's under control. Wendelstedt was a highly rated umpire during his 33 years, and beyond that has run one of the two top umpiring schools, teaching other umpires for more than 40 years.

              I would dispute that Charles O. Finley and Bill Veeck were closer than Veeck's admirers would admit. Finley came up with a couple of innovations, but I don't think a mule named Charley O quite counts. But certainly, every day that Marvin Miller is not in Cooperstown, the Hall of Fame is diminished.

              Comment


              • #8
                Now I have completed #6.

                Only three of the nine men available for a repeat nomination tallied even 3 out of 16 votes from the late committee. I hope the Historical Overview Committee will drop the other six in favor of new managers & umpires (Piniella will not yet be eligible) or candidates from other categories.

                Is there any reason to anticipate that any of the other six will someday be viable? (the six with tally '1' in the table)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Paul Wendt View Post
                  Now I have completed #6.

                  Only three of the nine men available for a repeat nomination tallied even 3 out of 16 votes from the late committee. I hope the Historical Overview Committee will drop the other six in favor of new managers & umpires (Piniella will not yet be eligible) or candidates from other categories.

                  Is there any reason to anticipate that any of the other six will someday be viable? (the six with tally '1' in the table)
                  I think there's a lot of reason to believe in those six. I'd back all six.

                  Rigler -- I have no idea how to judge umpires beyond longevity and the opinions of comtemporaries. Rigler umped 30 years, including 10 World Series, and was highly regarded by all. That sounds like a plausible HOF ump to me. O'Day retired third all time in games umped, and 2nd in games umped at home plate; Rigler retired 4th and 3rd, respectively. Bill Dinneen is another fine candidate, especially considering his fine career as a ML pitcher prior to becoming an umpire. These three seem like the obvious umpire candidates remaining from the early days of the game.

                  That said, modern umps are going to be in the mix, starting with Bruce Froemming, who (at least according to Wikipedia) is eligible for consideration in 2010. Froemming is 1-2 with Bill Klem on most of the longevity marks, although I'm certain he was not as influential or iconic a figure as Klem.

                  I don't have time to write up the managers right now, but Mauch, Martin, Johnson, O'Neill, and Kelly...(and Grimm) all have plausible cases, and with Herzog and Williams off the managers ballot, there are many more votes to go around now. If Murtaugh is next in line, I'm fine with that.

                  Tom Kelly's case, while not terrible, is weaker than the rest...he should be replaced by Ralph Houk. (I think I said this in this forum at the time, so this isn't a halo effect from Houk's recent passing.)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    My rough ranking of eligible but uninducted managers.

                    1. Billy Martin (Yankees)
                    2. Gene Mauch (Phillies)
                    3. Davey Johnson (Mets)
                    4. Danny Murtaugh (Pirates)
                    5. Ralph Houk (Yankees)
                    6. Charlie Grimm (Cubs)
                    7. Steve O’Neill (Tigers)
                    8. Jim Mutrie (New York Giants)
                    9. Pat Moran (Reds)
                    10. Bill Carrigan (Red Sox)
                    11. Tom Kelly (Twins)
                    12. Jack McKeon (Marlins)
                    13. Jimmie Dykes (White Sox)

                    I support all for the HOF, with diminishing enthusiasm down the list. There’s not much excuse for the Top 5 to be out.

                    I don't post this to get in quibbles over the rankings...if someone likes Murtaugh best, or thinks O'Neill's better than Grimm, I'm not inclined to get in a drawn out debate over it.

                    Criteria -- totally subjective, but a combination of career record, great seasons, longevity, and legacy as an innovator, strategist, or icon. Other contributions, such as playing career, service as an executive, etc., count.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Bold indicates strong (O'Day and Murtaugh) or moderate (Grimm) support from the previous committee.

                      Is this a reasonable allocation of the holdovers to the three eras?
                      : O'Day, Rigler, Grimm, O'Neill
                      : Murtaugh
                      : Mauch, Martin, Johnson, Kelly - "Expansion" (this fall for 2011 induction)

                      and this a reasonable allocation of the others named by Cougar?
                      : Mutrie, Moran, Carrigan, Dykes
                      : Houk
                      : McKeon

                      Umpires Wendelstedt and Froemming would be also be Expansion candidates.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Paul Wendt View Post
                        Bold indicates strong (O'Day and Murtaugh) or moderate (Grimm) support from the previous committee.

                        Is this a reasonable allocation of the holdovers to the three eras?
                        : O'Day, Rigler, Grimm, O'Neill
                        : Murtaugh
                        : Mauch, Martin, Johnson, Kelly - "Expansion" (this fall for 2011 induction)

                        and this a reasonable allocation of the others named by Cougar?
                        : Mutrie, Moran, Carrigan, Dykes
                        : Houk
                        : McKeon

                        Umpires Wendelstedt and Froemming would be also be Expansion candidates.
                        Seems reasonable to me. Mauch straddles Golden and Expansion...could go either way. Dykes is also plausibly a Golden age guy, but probably made a bigger mark in his early days with the White Sox...he never stuck anywhere very long after that.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Cougar View Post
                          Seems reasonable to me. Mauch straddles Golden and Expansion...could go either way. Dykes is also plausibly a Golden age guy, but probably made a bigger mark in his early days with the White Sox...he never stuck anywhere very long after that.
                          Since Bobby Cox, Lou Piniella, and Cito Gaston have all announced their retirements following this season, and Joe Torre is hinting at his as well -- would they be eligible for the upcoming expansion ballot?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            No, they must be retired six months.
                            and the nominating committee should be hard at work by this time during a normal cycle ;-)

                            Comment

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