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Mike Piazza vs Josh Gibson

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  • #31
    Originally posted by Cowtipper View Post
    Can't really compare a guy who spent much of his career playing exhibition and amateur quality games, whose argument is based largely on anecdotal and apocryphal evidence, in leagues that might not have even touched the quality of our minor leagues, with a guy who spent his career in the established, well-known highest level of baseball in the entire world.
    This is the point I am trying to make. Piazza was a fantastic hitter, hit for batting average and hit for great power. As I've posted before from 1993-2002 Piazza averaged .322/.389/.579, 155 OPS+. This was for 10 seasons. To put that into perspective in Frank Thomas' first 10 seasons, Thomas hit .320/.440/.573, 169 OPS+. And Piazza didn't do this against non-major leaguers, barnstorming tours, etc. Could Gibson have hit .322/.389/.579 over 10 years in the majors? It's possible I'm sure but I find it highly unlikely.
    Last edited by Honus Wagner Rules; 12-12-2012, 05:38 PM.
    Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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    • #32
      Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
      Could Gibson have hit .322/.389/.579 over 10 years in the majors? It's possible I'm sure but I find it highly unlikely.
      It probably would've been more like .310/.405/.588, but I certainly don't find it unlikely that some Negro League player could have, and that Gibson is one of the more likely candidates. Again, which is more likely? That there were black players at that level that were not welcome in the majors, or that there were no black players at that level?

      We haven't even brought up the PED factor. Wasn't Piazza suspect? Add that to the mix and I think Gibson starts pulling away. I'm frankly blown away that the voting isn't closer. Was Gibson not "all that" or is Piazza closer to Jimmy Foxx/Lou Gehrig level than he is to Frank Thomas level? Gotta be one or the other.
      Found in a fortune cookie On Thursday, August 18th, 2005: "Hard words break no bones, Kind words butter no parsnips."

      1955 1959 1963 1965 1981 1988 2017?

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      • #33
        Originally posted by toomanyhatz View Post
        It probably would've been more like .310/.405/.588, but I certainly don't find it unlikely that some Negro League player could have, and that Gibson is one of the more likely candidates. Again, which is more likely? That there were black players at that level that were not welcome in the majors, or that there were no black players at that level?

        We haven't even brought up the PED factor. Wasn't Piazza suspect? Add that to the mix and I think Gibson starts pulling away. I'm frankly blown away that the voting isn't closer. Was Gibson not "all that" or is Piazza closer to Jimmy Foxx/Lou Gehrig level than he is to Frank Thomas level? Gotta be one or the other.
        I don't mean to be a buttinski, but I'll give Piazza this as for his PED suspicion. He never (as far as I know) failed a test and he wasn't on the Mitchell Report. Personally, I think his problem is that he played during that era, was ragged on about his defense - which I don't think was as bad as his bashers like to believe, and of course no player drafted in the 62nd round can be this good.

        With Gibson, it's tough. All I can go on is what's been documented and what I've heard from a first-person witness. A guy I used to talk baseball with used to see the Philly Stars play when they had their games in Shibe Park since it was only a few blocks from his house. One thing he mentioned was that while there were a few outstanding players that likely could have prospered in MLB, the dropoff of talent was ridiculous. He said 90% would simply be system depth langushing in the minors today even though there are now 30 MLB teams.
        "Chuckie doesn't take on 2-0. Chuckie's hackin'." - Chuck Carr two days prior to being released by the Milwaukee Brewers

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        • #34
          I don't see Gibson with .400+ OBP in the majors. From what I read he wasn't a particularly patient hitter. I am not aware of any solid evidence that Piazza used PEDs. He was not named in the Mitchell Report, was never mentioned by Jose Canseco, nor did he ever fail a drug test.
          Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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          • #35
            Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
            I don't see Gibson with .400+ OBP in the majors. From what I read he wasn't a particularly patient hitter. I am not aware of any solid evidence that Piazza used PEDs. He was not named in the Mitchell Report, was never mentioned by Jose Canseco, nor did he ever fail a drug test.
            I'm curious because I don't know but I didn't think The Mitchell Report ever officially came out.
            "(Shoeless Joe Jackson's fall from grace is one of the real tragedies of baseball. I always thought he was more sinned against than sinning." -- Connie Mack

            "I have the ultimate respect for Whitesox fans. They were as miserable as the Cubs and Redsox fans ever were but always had the good decency to keep it to themselves. And when they finally won the World Series, they celebrated without annoying every other fan in the country."--Jim Caple, ESPN (Jan. 12, 2011)

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            • #36
              Originally posted by chicagowhitesox1173 View Post
              I'm curious because I don't know but I didn't think The Mitchell Report ever officially came out.
              I remember being at work when it came out. I started hearing names on the radio and couldn't wait to get home to find the entire list.

              BB-Ref has the names: Players Listed on the Mitchell Report

              Here's the full document: Mitchell Report
              "Chuckie doesn't take on 2-0. Chuckie's hackin'." - Chuck Carr two days prior to being released by the Milwaukee Brewers

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              • #37
                Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
                As you wish.

                HA! I love it!

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                • #38
                  It's impossible to rate a player who played in barnstorming leagues, with inaccurate stats, mythical stories that may be exaggerated to make up for injustice, and is basically folklore and compare him to a player who placed at a very high level against the best competition the world, with very accurate statistics and accounts.

                  It's like comparing Hanibal to Zhukov.
                  This week's Giant

                  #5 in games played as a Giant with 1721 , Bill Terry

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Ben Grimm View Post
                    I remember being at work when it came out. I started hearing names on the radio and couldn't wait to get home to find the entire list.

                    BB-Ref has the names: Players Listed on the Mitchell Report

                    Here's the full document: Mitchell Report
                    read the language: The following is a list of baseball players discussed for possible or confirmed use of performance enhancing drugs

                    Being in the Mitchell report is faaaaaar from a reflection of guilt
                    This week's Giant

                    #5 in games played as a Giant with 1721 , Bill Terry

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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by JR Hart View Post
                      read the language: The following is a list of baseball players discussed for possible or confirmed use of performance enhancing drugs

                      IBeing in the Mitchell report is faaaaaar from a reflection of guilt
                      I never said it was an admission of guilt. All I'm doing is providing what's been made public knowledge.

                      EDIT: Also, let's not turn this into a who did PED's and who didn't. It gets stale after a while and pretty much ends entertaining threads.
                      "Chuckie doesn't take on 2-0. Chuckie's hackin'." - Chuck Carr two days prior to being released by the Milwaukee Brewers

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by JR Hart View Post
                        It's impossible to rate a player who played in barnstorming leagues, with inaccurate stats, mythical stories that may be exaggerated to make up for injustice, and is basically folklore and compare him to a player who placed at a very high level against the best competition the world, with very accurate statistics and accounts.
                        I echo this standpoint.
                        “There can be no higher law in journalism than to tell the truth and to shame the devil.” Walter Lippmann

                        "Fill in any figure you want for that boy (Mantle). Whatever the figure, it's a deal." - Branch Rickey

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                        • #42
                          I have to lean Piazza's way. Some say Gibson is being short changed, how is that.
                          Can't it be considered just as unfair to tell Mike, Gibson was never tested in MLB but we know he was better than you.
                          Not taking anything away from Josh had to be a great hitter, but again, scant stats, some numbers from exhibition games, Mexican Baseball, hitters Heaven, black baseball day to day pitching not on the same level as Mlb pitching.

                          How many times on the board have some diminished some great white early MLB hitters because they played when the game was not integrated.
                          May sound silly to some but think about it. Through no fault of his own, Josh played in a league not integrated. Way back when, the level of white MLB would have been higher had some of the better blacks been included. Black baseball level would have been higher had some of the better white MLB players been included.
                          Mike did play in a integrated league.
                          Last edited by SHOELESSJOE3; 12-12-2012, 08:51 PM.

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
                            Who said this? Who considered Gibson better than Willie Mays and Hank Aaron? I can't think of one person who has said this.
                            Now you can.

                            “He had an eye like Ted Williams, and the power of Babe Ruth. I played with Willie Mays and against Hank Aaron, they were tremendous players, but they were no Josh Gibson. You saw him hit, and you took your hat off. It makes me sad to talk about Josh, because he didn't get to play in the Major Leagues, and when you tell people how great he was, they think you're exaggerating."–Monte Irvin
                            3 6 10 21 29 31 35 41 42 44 47

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                            • #44
                              I agree that we should 'err on the side of caution'. In 150 or so years of MLB baseball, nobody could come remotely close to what Piazza maintained for a 10 year period. The problem is, that one could be a great hitter, but not be consistent from year to year. Other catchers have had 1 or 2 seasons at that hitting level, but it is VERY difficult at the catcher's spot to be consistently great one year after another. Despite missing games to the strike, and playing in the worst hitter's parks in baseball, in mostly bad-mediocre lineups, and not playing full time until age 25, and competing against PED users, Piazza averaged about 35 105 .320, with around a 155 OPS+ (not sure of the exact numbers, just estimating) for a ten year stretch. He was Manny Ramirez or Albert Pujols at the catcher spot.

                              I'm willing to bet that Gibson may have had a couple of seasons at that level, but that's about it.

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                              • #45
                                You also have to consider that Gibson played official Negro National League seasons that never even earned him 200 at-bats in a season, per the current records available. Piazza, on the other hand, played 162-game seasons year in and year out, where every game counted. Emphasis on 'counted'. Sure, Gibson played a bunch of other games too, but how much can we say exhibition and barnstorming games 'counted'? How can we be sure the players were competing at their highest level game in and game out? We disparage the Temple Cup series because of its lack of utmost competition, yet we use incredible exhibition series to bolster Gibson's case.

                                Is using one or two fantastic exhibition series in which, say, a player hits .350 with eight home runs as proof that 'this player was great' any wiser than using a series in which a Babe Ruth or a Honus Wagner hit .200 as proof that they were horrible?

                                Why not just look at how some other Negro League greats (that is, those who were established Negro League stars) performed once they reached the major leagues? Monte Irvin hit .354 in the Negro Leagues, though he was a .293 hitter in the majors. Satchel Paige was 100-50 with a 3.22 ERA in the Negro Leagues. Though he was old when he reached the big leagues, his very human statline doesn't really reflect the superhuman aura history has placed around him. Willard Brown hit .179 in a 21 game stay at the big league level, despite hitting .339 in the Negro Leagues.

                                We apply all these different standards and exceptions and excuses to Negro Leaguers, allowing them this and that, even though we would scoff and laugh if we tried to do the same to players who spent their entire careers in the major leagues. We credit their time in the Mexican League, but we take away from big leaguers who spend too much time in the Mexican (and other minor) leagues. We credit their time in the Caribbean and Central/South America but we take away from those who quit the majors and leave for the easier competition of those southern leagues.

                                __

                                By the way, if you're looking for the Italian Babe Ruth, I might suggest checking out Roberto Bianchi. He hit .384 with 288 home runs and 1,170 RBI in the Italian Baseball League (Serie A1), winning two Triple Crowns. He holds the record for most home runs in that league. I do say, he put up numbers even greater than the mighty Josh Gibson.
                                Last edited by Cowtipper; 12-13-2012, 02:21 AM.

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