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Carl Hubbell greatly underrated?

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  • Carl Hubbell greatly underrated?

    How good was Carl Hubbell? Discuss! :radio

    (Inspired by parlo)
    Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

  • #2
    Of course he's not underrated. He's got a telescope named after him!


    • #3
      His career numbers arent much, but he had a great peak between 1932 and 1937. His best years were 1933, 36, 37, which included two MVPs.

      I think what originally got me worked up about Hubbell on here was the All Time NY Team. There were people who didnt include him as an All Time NY Pitcher. That to me was amazing.
      But then again, Mel Ott wasnt mentioned much either.
      Those Giants teams of the 1920 and 1930s seem to be largely overlooked.
      Despite the telescope!!!


      • #4
        *Carl Hubbell* Was named National League's Most Valuable Player-1933 and 1936,and selected for *The Sporting News -All Star Major League Teams-33-35-36-37...He pitched 46-successive shutout innings-july 13th to august 1st 1933,,He registered 10 shutouts in 1933.He turned in 16-consecutive victories-july 17th to end of season-1936,,Pitched a 11-0 no hit game against Pittsburgh-may 8th 1929,,Pitched an 18-inning 1-0 victory against the Cardinals-july 2nd 1933 and did not issue a base on balls,,Fanned 5-Batters in succession{ruth,gehrig,foxx,simmons,cronin}in the 1934 All-Star Game.....

        Wins-253-Lost-154 W%.622


        • #5
          -----Carl Hubbell, Giants' P, 1933-43----------------------------------------------------March 5, 1938---BB Reference

          ------------------------------------------2 shots on February 28, 1935------------------------------------------------1936-37

          -----------------------Giants' P, 1935-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------1938



          Last edited by Bill Burgess; 03-08-2010, 04:59 PM.


          • #6
            Hubbell is one of the top 20 pitchers of all-time but rarely gets the props he deserves.
            Buck O'Neil: The Monarch of Baseball


            • #7
              Originally posted by KCGHOST View Post
              Hubbell is one of the top 20 pitchers of all-time but rarely gets the props he deserves.
              One could reasonably argue he's top 10. I, too, rarely see his name mentioned in discussions of the greatest ever.
              "It is a simple matter to erect a Hall of Fame, but difficult to select the tenants." -- Ken Smith
              "I am led to suspect that some of the electorate is very dumb." -- Henry P. Edwards
              "You have a Hall of Fame to put people in, not keep people out." -- Brian Kenny
              "There's no such thing as a perfect ballot." -- Jay Jaffe


              • #8
                Carl Hubbell describes his favorite baseball moment in the 1968 edition of the book, My Greatest Day in Baseball, compiled by John P. Carmichael.

                King Carl Hubbell

                as told to John P. Carmichael

                Carl Owen Hubbell, born June 22, 1903, in Carthage, Missouri, was a gangling, rawboned southpaw who threw a deceptive screwball with matchless control, and was the mound perfectionist of the middle '30s. He led the New York Giants to three pennants and occupies a hallowed spot among Polo Ground immortals. King Carl faced his last batter in 1943, and is now chief of the San Francisco farm system.

                I can remember Frankie Frisch coming off the field behind me at the end of the third inning, grunting to Bill Terry: "I could play second base 15 more years behind that guy. He doesn't need any help. He does it all by himself." Then we hit the bench, and Terry slapped me on the arm and said: "That's pitching, boy!" And Gabby Hartnett let his mask fall down and yelled at the American League dugout: "We gotta look at that all season," and I was pretty happy.

                As far as control and "stuff" is concerned, I never had any more in my life than for that All-Star Game in 1934. But I never was a strikeout pitcher like Bob Feller or "Dizzy" Dean or "Dazzy" Vance. My style of pitching was to make the other team hit the ball, but on the ground. It was as big a surprise to me to strike out all those fellows as it probably was to them. Before the game, Hartnett and I went down the lineup . . . Gehringer, Manush, Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx, Simmons, Cronin, Dickey and Gomez. There wasn't a pitcher they'd ever faced that they hadn't belted one off him somewhere, sometime.

                We couldn't discuss weaknesses . . . they didn't have any, except the screwball. "Get that over, but keep your fast ball and hook outside. We can't let 'em hit in the air." So that's the way we started. I knew I only had three innings to work and could bear down on every pitch.

                They talk about those All-Star games as being exhibition affairs and maybe they are, but I've seen very few players in my life who didn't want to win, no matter whom they were playing or what for. If I'm playing cards for pennies, I want to win. How can you feel any other way? Besides, there were 50,000 fans or more there, and they wanted to see the best you've got. There was an obligation to the people, as well as to ourselves, to go all out. I can recall walking out to the hill in the Polo Grounds that day and looking around the stands and thinking to myself: "Hub, they want to see what you've got."

                Gehringer was first up, and Hartnett called for a waste ball just so I'd get the feel of the first pitch. It was a little too close, and Charley singled. Down from one of the stands came a yell: "Take him out!"

                I had to laugh.

                Terry took a couple steps off first and hollered: "That's all right," and there was Manush at the plate. If I recollect rightly, I got two strikes on him, but then he refused to swing any more, and I lost him. He walked. This time Terry and Frisch and "Pie" Traynor and Travis Jackson all came over to the mound and began worrying. "Are you all right?" Bill asked me. I assured him I was. I could hear more than one voice now from the stands: "Take him out before it's too late."

                Well, I could imagine how they felt with two on, nobody out and Ruth at bat. To strike him out was the last thought in my mind. The thing was to make him hit it on the ground. He wasn't too fast, as you know, and he'd be a cinch to double. He never took the bat off his shoulder. You could have pushed me over with your little finger. I fed him three straight screwballs, all over the plate, after wasting a fast ball, and he stood there. I can see him looking at the umpire on "You're out," and he wasn't mad. He just didn't believe it, and Hartnett was laughing when he threw the ball back.

                So up came Gehrig. He was a sharp hitter. You could double him, too, now and then, if the ball was hit hard and straight at an infielder. That's what we hoped he'd do, at best. Striking out Ruth and Gehrig in succession was too big an order. By golly, he fanned . . . and on four pitches. He swung at the last screwball, and you should have heard that crowd. I felt a lot easier then, and even when Gehringer and Manush pulled a double steal and got to third and second, with Foxx up, I looked down at Hartnett and caught the screwball sign, and Jimmie missed. We were really trying to strike Foxx out, with two already gone, and Gabby didn't bother to waste any pitches. I threw three more screwballs, and he went down swinging. We had set down the side on 12 pitches, and then Frisch hit a homer in our half of the first, and we were ahead.

                It was funny, when I thought of it afterwards, how Ruth and Gehrig looked as they stood there. The Babe must have been waiting for me to get the ball up a little so he could get his bat under it. He always was trying for that one big shot at the stands, and anything around his knees, especially a twisting ball, didn't let him get any leverage. Gehrig decided to take one swing at least and he beat down at the pitch, figuring on taking a chance on being doubled if he could get a piece of the ball. He whispered something to Foxx as Jim got up from the batter's circle and while I didn't hear it, I found out later he said: "You might as well cut . . . it won't get any higher." At least Foxx wasted no time.

                Of course the second inning was easier because Simmons and Cronin both struck out with nobody on base and then I got too close to Dickey and he singled. Simmons and Foxx, incidentally, both went down swinging and I know every pitch to them was good enough to hit at and those they missed had a big hunk of the plate. Once Hartnett kinda shook his head at me as if to say I was getting too good. After Dickey came Gomez and as he walked into the box he looked down at Gabby and said: You are now looking at a man whose batting average is .104. What the hell am I doing up here?" He was easy after all those other guys and we were back on the bench again.

                We were all feeling pretty good by this time and Traynor began counting on his fingers: "Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx, Simmons, Cronin! Hey, Hub, do you put anything on the ball?" Terry came over to see how my arm was, but it never was stronger. I walked one man in the third . . . and don't remember who it was . . . but this time Ruth hit one on the ground and we were still all right. You could hear him puff when he swung. That was all for me. Afterwards, they got six runs in the fifth and licked us, but for three innings I had the greatest day in my life. One of the writers who kept track told me that I'd pitched 27 strikes and 21 balls to 13 men and only five pitches were hit in fair territory.
                "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean


                • #9
                  Hubbell was excellent. 1933 to 1937 was an unbelievable peak, but even if you expand that from 1931 to 1939, he was still arguably the best pitcher in Major League Baseball. He as 171-92 with a 145 ERA+ in that time.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cowtipper View Post
                    Hubbell was excellent. 1933 to 1937 was an unbelievable peak, but even if you expand that from 1931 to 1939, he was still arguably the best pitcher in Major League Baseball. He as 171-92 with a 145 ERA+ in that time.
                    He was pretty darn good for those first few seasons before '31 too. I think in general, all the best pitchers of this era (1920s and 1930s) get underrated anymore. These guys pulled double duty as the aces of the staff, and as the team's top relief pitcher. They also had to compete in an era of higher offense, and they did so quite well. Guys like Dazzy Vance, Carl Hubbell, Lefty Gomez, Dizzy Dean and to a lesser extent Lefty Grove. Of course Grove gets a lot of love around here and is ranked pretty high on a lot of all time starters lists here. But the others also did very well in a tough time to be a pitcher, and a very difficult time to be one of the best in baseball year after year.
                    "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean


                    • #11
                      You don't get called "The Meal Ticket" if you're a spud.
                      3 6 10 21 29 31 35 41 42 44 47


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Los Bravos View Post
                        You don't get called "The Meal Ticket" if you're a spud.
                        King Carl is just one of two pitchers to ever win two MVP awards. And he had a beast of a teammate in Mel Ott while winning those MVP awards.
                        Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis


                        • #13
                          Hubbell pitching to the Babe (though the audio is fake).

                          Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
                            King Carl
                            I forgot about that one.

                            I love George Plimpton, in the Ken Burns series, talking about how he loved Hubbell when he was a kid and walked around imitating Carl's famous outwardly turned palm.
                            3 6 10 21 29 31 35 41 42 44 47


                            • #15
                              Carl Hubbell, from Robert Gregory's 1992 book Diz: The Story of Dizzy Dean and Baseball During the Great Depression (pages 93-94):

                              Then it was August 26 [1932] and the start of a historic rivalry. Unlike this first meeting, which drew only 10,000, their turns against each other over the next five years would come to represent for many people the thirties themselves. Dizzy Dean vs. Carl Hubbell, as exciting they said as Louis-Schmeling, more fun than a Huey Long speech, as indispensable to the era's popular culture as Fibber McGee and Molly, more thrilling than J. Edgar Hoover's chase of John Dillinger and Pretty Boy Floyd, and the outcome more important to the bleachers than the New Deal fights for Social Security, the NRA, and Minimum Wage.

                              Hubbell, 29, had been with the Giants since 1928 and pitched a no-hitter a year later but was yet to win 20 games in a season. Born in Carthage, Missouri, he had lived in Meeker, Oklahoma, since 1907 and was a pitching hero from the start with his left-handed control, developing a screwball and better curves than the farmer's daughter. In 1923, as Hubbell told the story, he rode bareback nine miles to pitch at Sparks, Oklahoma, and was paid a dollar for his 1-0 victory. It would have been fifty cents had he lost. Signed by the Detroit Tigers in 1926, he was told by one of Ty Cobb's coaches, George McBride, that throwing a screwball would hurt his arm. So he abandoned the pitch, didn't win and drifted back to the minors, where the Giants claimed him.

                              "I was pitching in the Polo Grounds and getting my brains knocked out," said Hubbell later. "There were a couple of runners on base and I had two strikes on the batter. Well, I'd had two strikes on some other hitters only to have the next pitch murdered. So I'm standing out there in the pitcher's box and I remember the screwball. I hadn't thrown one in three years but I decided the batter couldn't do more to it than the others had been doing to my fastball and curve. I cut loose with a screwball and the guy missed it by a foot. Shanty Hogan, the catcher, came rushing out and asked, 'What was that you threw?' I told him and he said, 'Throw lots of them.' I followed his advice and started winning regularly."

                              On the mound with his pants in an avant-garde droop almost to his ankles, Hubbell had the calm and steady manner of the pecan farmer he wanted to become; off it, he was modest and quiet with a good word for everybody, especially Dean. Forty years after they had last pitched against each other, Hubbell said, "Diz was a wonderful guy and I never saw him pitch a dull game. He sure could make things happen."

                              Dean felt just as warmly toward Hubbell. He seldom had high praise for other players but in 1937, when each had support as the majors' top pitcher, Diz said, "There never will be another pitcher like Carl Hubbell. He's a right to all the credit he can get. I don't wanna take nothin' away from the ol'-timers, but it gives me a big laugh when their records are talked about in the same breath with his. I'd like to see them fellas work with this here rabbit they call a ball."
                              "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean


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