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Wynn in the Hall?

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  • Wynn in the Hall?

    With the last poll, Wynn vs. Griffey, the consensus came out early, and 9 out of 10 here at BBF know that Griffey is better, but while Wynn may not be as good as Griffey, does anyone think that he belongs in the Hall of Fame?

    I am planning to use this more for just the poll, if you want to discuss, I would suggest it go in the above mentioned thread, but if you want to post here, go ahead.
    46
    Yes
    23.91%
    11
    No
    76.09%
    35

  • #2
    I take Griffey over Wynn ... but I do believe that Wynn belongs in the Hall of Fame.
    Jason

    Whenever I swung at a bad ball a little bit high or even inside I didn't like it, but when I swung at a bad ball that was in the dirt or outside, Jesus, I just wanted to puke because I knew that if I hit it I wouldn't have done anything with it anyway. -- Ted Williams

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    • #3
      I voted no, but I'd also vote no on about 30-40% of the guys already in the hall....Wynn is as good or better than probably 20% of HOFers IMO.

      Comment


      • #4
        I votee no, also. I don't think Wynn would even be discussed for this hadn't Bill James wrote about him in one of his books. He was a really good player whose numbers were depressed due to a tough home park, but I still don't think he measures up.
        Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by KCGHOST
          I votee no, also. I don't think Wynn would even be discussed for this hadn't Bill James wrote about him in one of his books. He was a really good player whose numbers were depressed due to a tough home park, but I still don't think he measures up.
          Wynn's numbers actually weren't even depressed at home while he was an Astro, though- in fact, I think he hit better there. You can find his yearly home/road splits at retrosheet.org.

          An odd fact which illustrates a larger principle, though:
          Jimmy Wynn led the league in walks in 1976. He hit .207 for a full season that year, which basically means that he went up there just trying to take pitches in order to draw a walk because he couldn't hit at all anymore. This is the essence of why OBP, though paraded as by far the most important baseline stat out there, in actuality is often very misleading. If Wynn had hit .290 that year instead of a horrific .207, the sabermetric automatons on here would probably still say he was "just as great".

          I read an article a few years back about Willie Mays' recollections of his final few years in baseball. Willie was discussing his realization during spring training in 1971 that the hard fly balls that used to carry out for him were now mostly flyouts. Since his age was quickly catching up with him and his hitting skills had eroded, he was forced to change his approach to a defensive one (taking tons of pitches). He ended up leading the league in walks, but ironically because he wasn't anywhere near the hitter he once was. Of course, this is totally masked by OBP (1971 would be the greatest year of his career, judging by OBP) and also by OPS+ (he looks to be just as great in 1971 as he was in 1958-60 there). Wynn's entire career is an exploitation of this masking.

          Mays wasn't as great at 40 as he was at 28- not even close; and he'd be the first to admit it. His change in approach was a complete concession to his age.

          Jimmy Wynn played as Mays did (after age 40) his entire career because he was simply bad at actually getting base hits. In the middle of his career, he hit an impossibly awful .203 (with a .295 slugging) for what was basically a full season in 1971, and he hit .250 for his career, which is seven points LOWER than the league average for his career, including pitcher batting averages. Wynn never led in anything except strikeouts and walks. He never did anything historically remarkable or truly unique, and he was completely out of baseball at 35.

          There are way too many guys in the HOF as is; we don't need any more guys who are borderline at very best (even using the debased standard that has been set of late).

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          • #6
            IMO, Wynn is among that distinguished class that gets to sit just outside the Hall of Fame - the Almost-Rans. Which is still quite an accomplishment and actually better than a good number of players actually in the Hall.

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            • #7
              Interesting... but does it really matter why a player walks a lot? The fact that he does makes him valuable.
              "The numbers are what brought me here; as it appears they brought you."
              - Danielle Rousseau

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              • #8
                --Hmm, why don't alot more crappy hitters just sit back and take the walks then. It isn't quite that easy to walk your way to a good season. You have to have a good eye, patience and pitchers have to respect you enough not to just fire it down the pipe when they get behind.

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                • #9
                  He was really good. Short but good career. Brutal HOF scores, brutal park and era. I like what he brought with the glove, and adjusting to hitting purgatory with some pop, still (which the Toy Cannon should have). I suppose if Puckett was enough of a "mainstay" to get in, Wynn could.

                  If he had talent around him he'd probably have to hit 2nd... not too many 2nd hitters are legit HOFers. Hmm.
                  (fantasy football)
                  JM: Only did that for a couple of years and then we had a conspiracy so it kind of turned me sour. Our league's commissioner, Lew Ford(notes) at the time, was doing some shady things that ... I'd rather not talk about [laughs].
                  DB: Isn't he in Japan right now?
                  JM: I don't know where Lou is right now. He's probably fleeing the authorities [laughs].

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                  • #10
                    I wonder how many runs a team with an OBP of .400 and a league average SLG would score.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by KCGHOST
                      I votee no, also. I don't think Wynn would even be discussed for this hadn't Bill James wrote about him in one of his books. He was a really good player whose numbers were depressed due to a tough home park, but I still don't think he measures up.
                      Bill James has never written about the HOF worthiness of Jimmy Wynn. He rates him in a HOF position in his NBJHBBA, but doesn't really write a piece about his Hall worthiness.

                      I read an article a few years back about Willie Mays' recollections of his final few years in baseball. Willie was discussing his realization during spring training in 1971 that the hard fly balls that used to carry out for him were now mostly flyouts. Since his age was quickly catching up with him and his hitting skills had eroded, he was forced to change his approach to a defensive one (taking tons of pitches). He ended up leading the league in walks, but ironically because he wasn't anywhere near the hitter he once was. Of course, this is totally masked by OBP (1971 would be the greatest year of his career, judging by OBP) and also by OPS+ (he looks to be just as great in 1971 as he was in 1958-60 there). Wynn's entire career is an exploitation of this masking.

                      Mays wasn't as great at 40 as he was at 28- not even close; and he'd be the first to admit it. His change in approach was a complete concession to his age.

                      Jimmy Wynn played as Mays did (after age 40) his entire career because he was simply bad at actually getting base hits. In the middle of his career, he hit an impossibly awful .203 (with a .295 slugging) for what was basically a full season in 1971, and he hit .250 for his career, which is seven points LOWER than the league average for his career, including pitcher batting averages. Wynn never led in anything except strikeouts and walks. He never did anything historically remarkable or truly unique, and he was completely out of baseball at 35.
                      So walking doesn't take any skill? You're looking at hitting from a "tools" approach. In BP there's never been a better hitter than Tony Blanco. He puts on an absolute show in RFK every BP. But he can't work the count and no one has ever been able to get him to. He can't hit at all in the game.

                      Willie Mays in 1971, despite his walks, still wasn't quite as valuable a hitter that year as he was in his prime. He was still a bit far off. But, Willie had given up a lot of one thing (power), and gotten a lot of another thing (walks). The walks didn't quite even out the power shortage, but they still were enough compensation to leave you with a very valuable hitter. Wynn was the same way in his decline. If you look at his trading history, you'll find he was always coveted by astute, statistical, GMs.

                      And Mark is right as well. You need to be at least an okay hitter to draw that many walks, or else pitchers will just throw it down the middle every time. I'm sure Jimmy could still hammer that meatball, or else even a guy like him with a fabulous eye wouldn't be able to walk all that much.
                      Last edited by 538280; 01-20-2006, 04:25 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by mac195
                        Interesting... but does it really matter why a player walks a lot?
                        In terms of his greatness as a hitter, yes it does.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 538280
                          And Mark is right as well. You need to be at least an okay hitter to draw that many walks, or else pitchers will just throw it down the middle every time. I'm sure Jimmy could still hammer that meatball, or else even a guy like him with a fabulous eye wouldn't be able to walk all that much.
                          So Wynn was "at least ok" when he hit .207 for a full season in 1976 (or .203 in 1971)? In 76' Wynn had 37 extra base hits and a slugging of .367, yet he led the league in walks. The year before he'd also drawn an incredible 110 walks in only 130 games, but with a paltry .248 average and certainly undaunting .417 slugging.

                          In terms of guys who weren't great hitters by any stretch of the imagination... Max Bishop and Eddie Yost also come to mind. They weren't even good hitters, but drew a ton of walks regardless. They were actually both pretty lousy hitters- no power and couldn't get hits to save their lives, but drew a ton of walks. Eddie Stanky is another.

                          Sure, Wynn had more power than them, but that isn't the point. People are trying to say he drew tons of walks because he was a feared/highly skilled hitter, but that obviously isn't the case. You don't have to be great to draw a ton of walks.

                          If Wynn consistently hit the ball hard and solid (i.e., if he was a great hitter), he would have been able to manage higher than a .250 average for his career. Not only was not only poor for a so called "great hitter", but actually significantly worse than the average player (including pitchers, catchers, and shortstops) during the same timeframe.
                          Last edited by csh19792001; 01-20-2006, 06:25 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by csh19792001
                            In terms of his greatness as a hitter, yes it does.
                            We have a problem with most hitters from around 1970-present, then, because most of them have adopted the Jimmy Wynn approach of walk, walk, strikeout, strikeout, home run, strikeout. How many star players have had that approach? Reggie Jackson, Schmidt, Darrell Evans, Dwight Evans, Henderson, McGwire, Sosa, Thome. The logical conclusion is that hitters are just not as great as they used to be.

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                            • #15
                              If Vada Pinson isn't in the HOF, how could Jimmy Wynn be ?

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