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weakest armed outfielder of all time

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  • #46
    The White Sox have had a bunch: Rudy Law, Lance Johnson, and Scotty Podsednik.

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    • #47
      Damon had the worst arm I've ever seen. I remember him struggling to get the ball to second base from the middle of the outfield and center.

      In 17750 innings, 1391 players attempted to take the extra base on him. He throughout a grand total of 26 players over 2000 career games in the outfield.

      Does anyone in modern history (post WWII) have a weaker arm?


      • #48
        Originally posted by GiambiJuice View Post
        Juan Pierre and Johnny Damon are the correct answers.
        I remember Juan Pierre catch a ball at the wall in Colorado and then throw it towards third to try to get a guy tagging up, and then he ran to get his own throw and threw it again! Actually it was on the radio but that is what I think i heard.

        But literally I remember him catching a few mid depth fly balls in the 9th where you just gave up hope because you knew that the runner would walk in from third after he caught it.


        • #49
          I'd say "my brother," but I suppose you want to limit this to professional players.
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          • #50
            Originally posted by brett View Post
            I remember Juan Pierre catch a ball at the wall in Colorado and then throw it towards third to try to get a guy tagging up, and then he ran to get his own throw and threw it again!.
            I can't believe I'm saying this, Brett, but that actually sounds nearly as epic as Manny "cutting off" Damon's throw in short left center field that time!!!

            Brett, conversely, who has the best outfield arm stats: since World War 2 ?? Kills, holds, assist/flyball ratio?

            (You might notice that any statistical question I throw out to you before any of the dozens of others here. I have learned, and have learned. to appreciate statistics more from you and anyone else in my 12 year,10000 post Odyssey on this site.)


            • #51
              The numbers for holds and kills when a guy is on second many outs were there, how hard was the ball hit, and where?

              With two outs, the runner generally won't be held ever, unless A)The runner is slow as molasses and/or B)It's a scorching line drive directly at the fielder.

              Even knowing these things, another factor is the score, and the third base coaches level or willingness to chance it. Whose the next guy up? If it's the weak hitting second baseman or pitcher, he might be more apt to take a chance and send him.

              Obviously, a ton of unknown, yet very important factors to consider but those numbers are interesting, even as presented. Given that we'll never know all details, perhaps it's best to just say that water seeks it's own level over time, and it evens out for everyone.


              • #52
                Originally posted by yanks0714 View Post
                The reason Ashburn led the league in assists was that he had plenty of opportunities because opposing teams were willing to run on his weak arm. An OF'er with a strong arm might not get as many opportunities because the opposition simply didn't challenge their arm. The challenged Ashburn's quite a bit.
                This is another canard that's grown over the years. Look at Duke Snider's *actual* numbers (% of players trying to advance, holds, base runner kill%....and guess what? His career numbers, during almost the exact same years, same league, nearly the same # of OF games......aren't as good as Snider's.

                The guy with the supposed rag arm was actually a better fielder and better at holding guys from advancing, and better at throwing guys out than the guy who was thought to have a cannon arm and know how to cut all the angles as well as anyone in the 50's


                • #53
                  Jon Jay is really bad.
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                  • #54
                    Pete Rose had a noodle, especially when he was on the Expos.
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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by csh19792001 View Post
                      I can't believe I'm saying this, Brett, but that actually sounds nearly as epic as Manny "cutting off" Damon's throw in short left center field that time!!!
                      Laugh out loud funny, especially considering he DOVE TO CUT IT OFF then throws from his friekin' KNEES!! :bowdown:

                      Last edited by Sultan_1895-1948; 04-29-2014, 04:07 PM.


                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Sultan_1895-1948 View Post
                        Laugh o?,funny, especially considering he DOVE TO CUT IT OFF then throws from his friekin' KNEES!! :bowdown:

                        Last edited by csh19792001; 04-29-2014, 04:25 PM.


                        • #57
                          Aside from the factors I mentioned, which I know you're well aware of...perhaps the biggest factor is ballpark. For the most part, they probably cancel each other out over time, just like the other things.

                          However, when we have an extreme, like left field in Fenway, it's glaring. I have no doubt that Williams' was a circus on the road and that Fenway gave him a huge cushion.

                          We don't have home/road numbers for this held/kill thing but for a guy like Manny, we can use his Cleveland years vs Fenway years to get an idea.

                          Manny, single with runner on second....

                          As Indian 251/74/7

                          As Red Sock 256/117/11

                          So in just five more chances, he holds 43 more runners and kills four more. This is a younger, more athletic Manny in Cleveland, as opposed to the aging one with the huge cushion behind him, playing shallow, less territory to cover. And he "performs" much better. Do we really believe he got that much better with age?

                          Or better said, playing left in Fenway aided him, just like it did Ballgame.

                          Manny held 29.4% of runners as an Indian and held 45.7% as a Sock. So essentially, we can say that Fenway gave him a 16.3% "boost" in this stat.

                          Consider that Ballgame had 18 full seasons with half his games in front of a cushion.

                          His single w/ runner on second is 465/100/8. That 100/465 "held" number is 21.5%. After the assumed boost is factored in, we're talkin' 5.2% held. That would be about 24 out of 465 in a more neutral environment, to put that into perspective.

                          I know that method has flaws, just like these held/kill numbers but it gives an idea
                          Last edited by Sultan_1895-1948; 04-29-2014, 04:49 PM.


                          • #58
                            Originally posted by csh19792001 View Post

                            That's why I use/share complete pbp fielding totals. As should *everyone *.

                            Check out the fielding tab on Juan Pierre's baseball ref page (or for that matter, it's complete pbp all the way back now to 1945).

                            In 15551 innings, 1,107 runners attempted to take the extra base (delineated into 5 categories). He threw out 26 baserunners.

                            Don Baylor threw out SIX baseunners out 507 opportunities!!!!
                            And unlike Pierre, who had as much speed as anhone ive seen in the outfield (helping him stop guys from advacing) guys ran at will on Baylor. His "hold" percentage.
                            "Don Baylor has a parachute arm. Every time he throws a ball it arcs so high it comes down with frost on it." Cliff Keane, broadcaster
                            "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean


                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Jackaroo Dave View Post
                              All this makes me think that in SOME cases speed, a good jump, and a quick release are as important as a strong arm in patrolling the bases. The issue is elapsed time for the ball to go from plate to base, and I'd guess that most of that time consists of the fielder running the ball down and getting set, not the throw and relay. But that's just a guess.
                              It's an enlightened and nuanced guess I would add!!!! This supports my sentiments/conclusion re: my earlier post today about Richie Ashburn vs Duke Snider.

                              As I was saying to/complimenting Randy (Sultan1895-1948) earlier, it's incredibly refreshing to see a three-dimensional from the inside out analysis on this site; it seems that almost everyone here overall the years I've been here, follow numbers blindly. (if you really never even played baseball, or managed or even coached, what else you have to go by the numbers from spreadsheets on the Internet?)

                              in the majority of them don't even understand but the numbers they consistently rely on and harp on even signify, and how they are derived.


                              • #60
                                Speaking of bad Red Sox left-fielders, here's a piece on Smead Jolley, from the first edition of the The Baseball Hall of Shame books (1986) by Bruce Nash and Allan Zullo (pages 17-18). For those who have never read them, they are great for young baseball fans, tweens and early teens, who want a funny story or two. Well, young kids who already have some knowledge about the players of the past, being that even the "current" players in these books are all well on their way through their post-playing careers. . .

                                Here's what they wrote about Jolley, the first story being from a game when he was with the other Sox, then a funny Green Monster encounter! I had no idea they had a hill out in left back then, to be honest. Well, I must have at some point, I read this book almost 30 years ago.

                                Smead Jolley
                                Outfielder - Chicago-Boston, A.L. - 1930-33

                                Smead Jolley was one of the world's worst outfielders. Even Jolley agreed.

                                He sealed his reputation by committing three errors on a single play. He was stationed in right field in a game against the Athletics in Philadelphia. Bing Miller smashed a single and, to the White Sox's dismay, it headed right for Jolley.

                                As expected, the ball rolled through his legs for error number one. Jolley whirled around to play the carom off the wall. To no one's surprise, the ball scooted back through his legs for error number two. Jolley could have stopped while he was ahead, but perhaps sensing immortality, he seized the moment to vault himself into the twilight zone of fielding. He picked up the ball and heaved it over the third baseman's head for error number three. Meanwhile, Bing Miller circled the bases.

                                Shockingly, Jolley's incredible feat never made it into the record books. The official scorer, refusing to believe that any major leaguer could commit such a fielding atrocity, charged Jolley with only two errors, thus robbing him of an officially recognized record as the worst single fielding play in baseball history.

                                Nevertheless, Jolley went on to distinguish himself when he was traded to the Boston Red Sox where he had trouble with Fenway Park. Some parks in those days had embankments against the outfield fences before warning tracks were installed. At that time, Fenway had a ten-foot incline in left field. To Jolley it was as awesome as Mount Everest. In frustration, the Red Sox coaches spent mornings hitting fungoes to left while Jolley practiced running up the hill to make the catch.

                                The next time Jolley started in left, he had a chance to show how he could handle the incline. In a game against the Washington Senators, a long fly ball was hit to left. Jolley took off, ran easily up the incline, turned around to make the catch and saw that he had overrun the ball. Jolley started back down the incline but tripped and sprawled flat on his face. The ball bounced near him and by the time Jolley staggered to his feet, the batter was standing on third.

                                At the end of the inning, Jolley returned to the dugout, cussing at his coaches. "Fine bunch, you guys," he complained. "For ten days you teach me how to go up the hill, but none of you has the brains to teach me how to come down!"
                                "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean


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