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Baseball Fever Policy

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This document was based on a similar policy used by SABR.

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Great, but Underappreciated Pitching Stars of 1910-1945 (non-HOFers)

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  • Great, but Underappreciated Pitching Stars of 1910-1945 (non-HOFers)

    Here's three in this category, but there's certainly many others: Two of them are all-time franchise leaders in wins.
    Hooks Dauss and Wilbur Cooper each played in the majors the exact same years 1912 to 1926 and both became all-time leaders in wins for franchises. George 'Hooks' Dauss went 223-182, (all with the Detroit Tigers with a career high 24 wins in 1915, a total of three 20 or more win seasons and two 19 win seasons. The Tigers have had some great pitchers including Mickey Lolich, Jim Bunning, Denny McLain and Justin Verlander but none has matched Dauss' win total. Wilbur Cooper was 216-178. His 202 wins for the Pittsburgh Pirates is the Pirates franchise record. He had a .548 winning percentage (three points lower than Dauss' and an excellent 2.89 earned run average.) Cooper threw 279 Complete Games. Cooper has four twenty win seasons and two others of 19 wins. Perhaps those two's HOF chances are hurt by them playing before the All-Star Game Era.
    Freddie Fitzsimmons is another hurler that deserves mentioning. He pitched from 1925 to 1943 and went 217-146.Fitzsimmons had only one 20 game season, but had a high winning percentage, finishing with a .598 winning percentage. Part of the trouble with his recognition factor was that for many years he was the #2 pitcher in the NY Giants' rotation behind the magnificent Carl Hubbell,
    He had only one 20 win seasons (1928) but his record shows some outstanding yearly marks, his best being 20-9,19-7, 18-11 18-14, 16-11 and 16-2. He was 170-114, .599 win pctg. as a Giant, and then posted a nearly identical .595 win. pctg. with the Brooklyn Dodgers over the remainder of his career. Fitzsimmons was never an all-star as many of his best seasons occured before the all-star game was inaugurated in 1933, although he did have a seemingly all-star worthy year for the Dodgers in 1940 when he went a spectacular 16-2.

  • #2
    How about Mel Harder and George Uhle? They fit the bill.
    "Here's a crazy thought I've always had: if they cut three fingers off each hand, I'd really be a great hitter because then I could level off better." Paul Waner (lifetime .333 hitter, 3,152 lifetime hits.

    Comment


    • #3
      Sad Sam Jones seemed like a good journeyman pitcher who player forever. Not a bad hitter, either, hit .236 from 1920-1923.

      Comment


      • #4
        One name that comes to mind is Carl Mays. His career included 5 20 win seasons and a .622 w-l%.
        I was looking at the similarity scores to Mays. There are three HOFers, Coveleski, Bender, and Chesbro. Using WAR which so many people here are in love with, here are how Mays compares with them, the guys mentioned already in this thread, and the two HOFers who were his teammates in the 20's with the Yankees, Waite Hoyt and Herb Pennock.
        Coveleski 60.2
        Uhle 56.0
        Cooper 53.8
        Hoyt 51.8
        Mays 50.2
        Bender 49.5
        Pennock 44.9
        Harder 43.8
        Jones 43.7
        Chesbro 41.4
        Dauss 39.2
        Fitzsimmons 35.7

        Looking down BRef's list of all time career WAR leaders, I counted 7 HOF pitchers with lower WAR than Mays.
        Using ERA+ as a yardstick, Mays' 119 is equal to or better than no less than 23 HOF pitchers.
        Finally his 1.207 WHIP is better than 15 HOFers

        Of course Mays has always been remembered for one unfortunate pitch. I wonder how much that has affected the voters.
        27 World Championships
        22 retired numbers
        Isn't it great to be a Yankee fan?

        Comment


        • #5
          He was also already one of the least liked players in baseball before that pitch. Even on his own teams.
          "Here's a crazy thought I've always had: if they cut three fingers off each hand, I'd really be a great hitter because then I could level off better." Paul Waner (lifetime .333 hitter, 3,152 lifetime hits.

          Comment


          • #6
            Non-HOFers with 45 Pitching WAR, 19 Pitching WAA, and 170 Wins, 1907-1948:

            Code:
            Player           WAR WAA/pitch   W   L     IP From   To ERA+
            Jack Quinn      58.9      25.0 247 218 3920.1 1909 1933  114
            Eddie Cicotte   56.6      27.0 208 147 3208.0 1908 1920  123
            Urban Shocker   54.8      29.0 187 117 2681.2 1916 1928  124
            Tommy Bridges   52.6      26.9 194 138 2826.1 1930 1946  126
            Bobo Newsom     50.8      19.6 205 217 3660.1 1929 1948  107
            Eddie Rommel    50.5      25.2 171 119 2557.0 1920 1932  121
            Babe Adams      50.1      26.9 194 139 2991.1 1907 1926  118
            Wilbur Cooper   49.0      22.2 216 178 3480.0 1912 1926  116
            Wes Ferrell     48.7      23.7 193 128 2623.0 1927 1941  116
            Hippo Vaughn    46.6      25.0 178 137 2730.0 1908 1921  119
            Bucky Walters   46.2      20.4 198 160 3100.2 1934 1948  116
            Si quaeris peninsulam amoenam, circumspice.

            Comprehensive Reform for the Veterans Committee -- Fixing the Hall continued.

            Comment


            • #7
              Eddie Rommel (and Bobo Newsom)is one pitcher from that list who I have not seen people over the years on this board make an argument for HOF worthiness during the course of various permutations of HOF conversations or elections. In the first half the 1920s he was on the B team of best pitchers in the American League on a regular basis. He led the league in both wins and losses on two separate occasions. By the time the A's got good, he was )based on the reductions in innings etc) past it or old, but still would rack up double figure wins with a handful of losses. I can't say that makes him a HOF cusp type of guy but it does make him a historical figure of note.

              Comment


              • #8
                Tommy Bridges had one of the best curveballs of his generation, and ranks third behind Newhouser and Verlander in career WAR as a Tigers pitcher. More WAR than Mickey Lolich or Jack Morris and lots more than Hooks Dauss.

                Comment


                • #9
                  As I mentioned in the original post I selected three pitchers in this category, but there are many others who were underappreciated from that era who had fine career records.. b-f members were quick to point out others in this category and even to poiint out why in their opinion some other pitchers from that era were even more deserving of HOF recognition than the three I selected. I'm very pleased with the response.

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