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Buck Freeman

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  • Buck Freeman

    Buck Freeman spent 11 years in the big leagues, hitting .293 with 131 triples, 82 home runs, an 808 OPS and a 132 OPS+. He led the league in games played twice, total bases once, triples once, home runs twice, RBI twice, extra base hits twice, power-speed number once, AB/HR once and games in the outfield three times.

    He hit over 10 home runs four times (with a high of 25 in 1899), over 10 triples six times, and he had at least 100 RBI four times. From 1899 to 1904, he hit .305 while averaging 18 triples, 12 home runs, 102 RBI and a 137 OPS+ a season.

    In the 1903 World Series, he was a big part of the Americans (Red Sox) winning team, as he hit .290 with nine hits, three triples, six runs scored and four RBI.

    His black ink is 19 and his grey ink is 95, numbers that aren't too shabby considering the short length of his career. Freddie Lindstrom, a short-career Hall of Famer, had marks of only 3 and 57, respectively. Earle Combs' marks are 7 and 78, while Chick Hafey is at 7 and 79.

    Statistically, Freeman is similar to Carl Reynolds, Charlie Hickman, Gavvy Cravath, Ival Goodman, John Stone, Frank DeMaree, Moose Solters, John Kruk, Freddy Leach and Frank Catalanotto.

    What do you think about Buck Freeman? Should he be in the Hall of Fame? Did he have Hall of Fame potential?
    Not a Hall of Famer, but he had Hall of Fame potential

  • #2
    Freeman was a hell of a slugger. During the height of his prowess, 1899-1904, Freeman hit more HRs than anyone, and he hit 60% more HRs than the next best slugger.

    All the potential is right there in that short, compact time span. What we might have seen had he played in the big leagues at age 23...


    • #3
      How old was he when he hit the bigs? 30?


      • #4
        He arrived in the majors briefly (the American Association) in 1891 at the age of 19, but didn't show up again until 1898. He didn't stick until 1899, when he was 27 years old.


        • #5
          Yeah he was late to the dance


          • #6
            Originally posted by TomBodet View Post
            Yeah he was late to the dance
            He was late to the dance, but there was not the perfect alignment of talent in leagues in Freeman's day. Many "major league" quality players were in minor leagues; there was no farm system, no player development systems; there was only the free minor leagues and the major leagues. Freeman appears to have had HOF potential, and he's a guy who might deserve a second look. His .680 OWP is in HOF range for a slugger. He was not the typical star of his day, and his stats aren't superficially outstanding, but there are factors that suggest that he may be worthy. He certainly had the potential. Freeman is a guy who could have, in his best years, been the best player on a pennant-winning team.
            "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


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