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Best 20-Year-Old in Major League History?

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  • Best 20-Year-Old in Major League History?

    Who do you think had the best age 20 season of all-time? (position players only)

    Feel free to suggest your own if I haven't included them.

    I think it boils down to:

    Ted Williams 1939 - .327/.436/.609 31HR, 145 RBI, 131R, OPS+ 160

    Alex Rodriguez 1996 - .358/.414/.631 36HR, 123 RBI, 141R, 15 SB, OPS+ 160

    Mel Ott 1929 - .328/.449/.635 42HR, 151 RBI, 138R, OPS+ 165

    Ty Cobb 1907 - .350/.380/.468 5HR, 119 RBI, 97R, 49 SB, OPS+ 166

    Al Kaline 1955 - .340/.421/.546 27HR, 102 RBI, 121R, OPS+ 162


    I think these are the cream of the crop. I considered a few others such as Mantle and F. Robinson, but they didn't quite measure up to these, IMHO.

    Please feel free to weigh in with any comments or arguments as to who was the best 20-year-old player of all time.

    If this generates interest, maybe we'll do 21, 22, 23, etc.... and vote on the greatest player at each age (I have a feeling Bonds will have a monopoly on the late 30's and early 40's )

    EDIT: I meant to add a poll to this thread. Mods, please help me out. Thanks!
    80
    Alex Rodriguez (1996)
    41.25%
    33
    Ted Williams (1939)
    13.75%
    11
    Ty Cobb (1907)
    10.00%
    8
    Mel Ott (1929)
    23.75%
    19
    Al Kaline (1955)
    11.25%
    9
    Last edited by GiambiJuice; 07-02-2012, 01:53 PM. Reason: made the stats bold
    My top 10 players:

    1. Babe Ruth
    2. Barry Bonds
    3. Ty Cobb
    4. Ted Williams
    5. Willie Mays
    6. Alex Rodriguez
    7. Hank Aaron
    8. Honus Wagner
    9. Lou Gehrig
    10. Mickey Mantle

  • #2
    I really like the idea of a series of polls. I know some here on BBF don't like them, but I enjoy poll-based lists as we pool our baseball knowledge.

    I'll weigh in as soon as the poll is up.
    CLEVELAND INDIANS Central Division Champions

    1920 1948 1954 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2001 2007

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    • #3
      Those are probably the Top Five batting seasons by a 20 year old.
      Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball

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      • #4
        For me, it comes down to A-Rod and Mel Ott. I'm going to give the nod to A-Rod. I think his baserunning (15 steals, 79% success rate) make up for the 5 point difference in OPS+. The positional value puts him way over the top from a value perspective, but I'm not sure if I want to factor that in.

        Mods, Please add a poll with the following five choices: A-Rod, Ted Williams, Cobb, Ott, & Kaline. Thanks!
        Last edited by GiambiJuice; 08-15-2007, 11:04 AM.
        My top 10 players:

        1. Babe Ruth
        2. Barry Bonds
        3. Ty Cobb
        4. Ted Williams
        5. Willie Mays
        6. Alex Rodriguez
        7. Hank Aaron
        8. Honus Wagner
        9. Lou Gehrig
        10. Mickey Mantle

        Comment


        • #5
          A-Rod was basically of the same hitting value as the others-but did it while playing one of the most important defensive positions on the diamond well. He's the clear choice of those seasons IMO. Cobb may be the best offensively because of his baserunning, but A-Rod's defensive value still wins IMO. Not to mention quality of competition in that comparison.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by GiambiJuice
            Is anybody interested in joining this discussion? I seems like a good idea to try to come up with the best players in history at each age. I'm not sure it's been done before on Baseball-Fever.

            Please feel free to chime in.
            How do you want to determine ages?
            Beginning of year?
            End of year?
            Middle of year?
            Mythical SF Chronicle scouting report: "That Jeff runs like a deer. Unfortunately, he also hits AND throws like one." I am Venus DeMilo - NO ARM! I can play like a big leaguer, I can field like Luzinski, run like Lombardi. The secret to managing is keeping the ones who hate you away from the undecided ones. I am a triumph of quantity over quality. I'm almost useful, every village needs an idiot.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by RuthMayBond View Post
              How do you want to determine ages?
              Beginning of year?
              End of year?
              Middle of year?
              I think they are using "seasonal age", age on July 1st. If you notice the 1996 season is A-Rod's age 20 season even though he turned 21 on July 27, 1996.
              Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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              • #8
                Originally posted by GiambiJuice View Post
                Mods, Please add a poll with the following five choices: A-Rod, Ted Williams, Cobb, Ott, & Kaline. Thanks!
                Done! Hope it is what you wanted.
                RIP - HGF [1937-2009]

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                • #9
                  Considering the home park and era

                  I have to go with Al Kaline

                  Cobb had huge parks for his xtra bases and BA
                  Rodriguez was at the height of the MLB HR conspiracy to bring back fans after the strike which they blame on steroids now
                  Mel Ott was playing with a ball that the NL renounced as too over the top
                  Ted Williams, well look at the talent in the late 30's and 40's overall. Not the best in baseball's illustrious history. I bet many of us would have a hard time naming players outside of Dimaggio, Williams, Spahn and Feller

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                  • #10
                    Kaline was playing in a semi-integrated league (the Tigers, Yankees and Red Sox were still holdouts), and before expansion began to dilute the talent pool. Of all the players listed, he probably faced the stiffest competition. He finished 2nd in the MVP vote that year (as did ARod). He didn't play SS or CF, but played RF as well as anyone has ever done it.

                    I'll rate them Kaline, ARod, Cobb, Williams, and Ott.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      BOB FELLER.

                      [Pictured below against a guy who, at the age of 20, batted .398 BA/154 RBI/34 HR, in an MVP year, leading his team to the PCL Title. Two years earlier, at age 18, he hit safely in a record 61 straight games.]

                      Ruth's in the running, too. Not including him in the poll is a bit, well, Ruthless.

                      Last edited by TRfromBR; 08-25-2007, 10:09 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TRfromBR View Post


                        Ruth's in the running, too. Not including him in the poll is a bit, well, Ruthless.

                        I already stipulated that this is for position players only - not pitchers.
                        My top 10 players:

                        1. Babe Ruth
                        2. Barry Bonds
                        3. Ty Cobb
                        4. Ted Williams
                        5. Willie Mays
                        6. Alex Rodriguez
                        7. Hank Aaron
                        8. Honus Wagner
                        9. Lou Gehrig
                        10. Mickey Mantle

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by GiambiJuice View Post
                          I already stipulated that this is for position players only - not pitchers.

                          I apologize, Mr. Giambi Juice. I read the poll, which didn't include that restriction. I stipulate that I erred in tarnishing your thread with the names Feller, DiMaggio & Ruth.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by TRfromBR View Post

                            I apologize, Mr. Giambi Juice. I read the poll, which didn't include that restriction. I stipulate that I erred in tarnishing your thread with the names Feller, DiMaggio & Ruth.
                            No problemo
                            My top 10 players:

                            1. Babe Ruth
                            2. Barry Bonds
                            3. Ty Cobb
                            4. Ted Williams
                            5. Willie Mays
                            6. Alex Rodriguez
                            7. Hank Aaron
                            8. Honus Wagner
                            9. Lou Gehrig
                            10. Mickey Mantle

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              You could probably add Frank Robinson in 1956.


                              AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG
                              572 122 166 27 6 38 83 8 4 64 95 .290 .379 .558

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