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Who Deserved the 1937 AL MVP?

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  • Who Deserved the 1937 AL MVP?

    1937 is one of my all time favorite seasons. The Yankees and Tigers each had three players who were legit MVP candidates, the only thing missing was a great season by Jimmie Foxx, who had an off year.

    Joe Dimaggio:
    Had his breakout season, 167 RBI, led the league in slugging, home runs, and runs scored.

    Lou Gehrig:
    Typical astounding Gehrig season. 200 hits, 37 159 .351 .473 .643. Led the league in walks, OBP, OPS and OPS+

    Bill Dickey:
    133 RBI, batted .332 with a .987 OPS from the catcher spot.

    Charlie Gehringer:
    Batted .371, to lead the league 209 hits, .978 OPS along with great second base defense.

    Hank Greenberg:
    183 RBI, third most all time. Also had 200 hits and 40 homers.

    Rudy York:
    Even better than Dickey, albeit in a shortened season. 35 103 .307 stat line looks great, but looks downright incredible when you consider he was a catcher, and only played 104 (!) games.
    17
    Joe Dimaggio
    52.94%
    9
    Lou Gehrig
    23.53%
    4
    Bill Dickey
    0.00%
    0
    Charlie Gehringer
    11.76%
    2
    Hank Greenberg
    11.76%
    2
    Rudy York
    0.00%
    0
    Last edited by willshad; 01-18-2013, 01:37 PM.

  • #2
    I went with Dimaggio.
    "(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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    • #3
      The Yankees really had 4 or 5 candidates. Lefty Gomez had the highest WAR in MLB that year, and Red Ruffing.

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      • #4
        I say go with the Mechanical Tiger.

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        • #5
          Tough one. There were several Yankees who could have been MVP with the numbers they were carrying around, and Greenberg had as great a season as many top Yankees.

          1. Lou Gehrig
          2. Joe Dimaggio & Lefty Gomez in a dead heat
          3. Hank Greenberg

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          • #6
            Where do Dickey's and York's seasons fit in as far as top offensive seasons ever for a catcher? York was on pace for about 52 home runs and 151 RBI for 154 games.
            Last edited by willshad; 01-19-2013, 11:04 AM.

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            • #7
              Went with DiMag.

              Harlond Clift has a great season (.308 29 HR 118 RBI 175 hits) for a 108 loss team.
              I've tried 'em all, I really have, and the only church that truly feeds the soul, day in, day out, is the Church of Baseball.

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              • #8
                That was quite a list of players to choose from. Gehringer with his 96 RBI beat out three guys who AVERAGED 170 RBI among themselves. Twenty to thirty points of batting average advantage must have been enough to carry the day.

                Joe DiMaggio averaged a run per game. And he averaged more than an RBI per game. That was good enough for second place in the MVP vote. Good grief! He lost by four voting points to Gehringer. They were the only ones to get any of the eight first place votes.

                That said I went with Gehrig and his .473 OBP as he walked 127 times and still managed to drive in 159 runs.

                Gehringer, DiMaggio, and Gehrig batted two-three-four in the AL line-up for the ASG that season. Those guys totaled three runs, six hits and five RBI for the Junior Circuit in an 8-3 win over the National League.
                Your Second Base Coach
                Garvey, Lopes, Russell, and Cey started 833 times and the Dodgers went 498-335, for a .598 winning percentage. That’s equal to a team going 97-65 over a season. On those occasions when at least one of them missed his start, the Dodgers were 306-267-1, which is a .534 clip. That works out to a team going 87-75. So having all four of them added 10 wins to the Dodgers per year.
                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p5hCIvMule0

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ipitch View Post
                  The Yankees really had 4 or 5 candidates. Lefty Gomez had the highest WAR in MLB that year, and Red Ruffing.
                  Lefty Grove, I believe: 9.0 to 8.8. Maybe Gomez's pitching WAR was higher than anybody's overall WAR.
                  Indeed the first step toward finding out is to acknowledge you do not satisfactorily know already; so that no blight can so surely arrest all intellectual growth as the blight of cocksureness.--CS Peirce

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                  • #10
                    I always liked Dimaggio for his best seasons, '37, '39-'41. There is really no denying his greatness during those 4 years. It is just that it was about 540 total games and he never reached that overall level outside of those 4 years.
                    167 RBI and 418 total bases.

                    Also he his 27 home runs on the road, slugged .711 and had 224 total bases, 87 RBI.

                    I have always wondered if he had played in a typical park, would he have become more of a 50+ home run threat guy given that year. With 27 on the road he looked like a guy who had the power to challenge 60, but he DID seem to modify his approach somewhat after that.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Jackaroo Dave View Post
                      Lefty Grove, I believe: 9.0 to 8.8. Maybe Gomez's pitching WAR was higher than anybody's overall WAR.
                      Even with an understanding of relative stats, and that the big 4 hitters had a high offensive setting to produce in, when a pitcher who goes 17-9 with 262 innings and a 159 ERA+ can top those great offensive seasons it is a little eye raising. For me, that is a "typical" Cy Young winner type season. I have no problem with pitchers winning the MVP but I'd like to see something extra special, or a win-loss record that confirms the value of the other numbers. And Grove got zero MVP votes which is almost just as bad.

                      Now Gomes with a 193 ERA+ and 270+ innings looks like an MVP stat line.

                      Well, war says that Gomez had .12 runs saved per 9 innings by his defense and Grove lost .25 runs per 9 from his defense. That would effectively bring Grove up to a 182 ERA+ and Gomez down to about the same mark. In addition to that, Gomez got a few more runs recorded in the unearned column. Maybe it all works out.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by brett View Post
                        I always liked Dimaggio for his best seasons, '37, '39-'41. There is really no denying his greatness during those 4 years. It is just that it was about 540 total games and he never reached that overall level outside of those 4 years.
                        167 RBI and 418 total bases.

                        Also he his 27 home runs on the road, slugged .711 and had 224 total bases, 87 RBI.

                        I have always wondered if he had played in a typical park, would he have become more of a 50+ home run threat guy given that year. With 27 on the road he looked like a guy who had the power to challenge 60, but he DID seem to modify his approach somewhat after that.
                        Dimaggio was transcendent during those 4 years, but even in his other years, he was still playing at a HOF level, even a top 5 or 6 all time CFer level. His rookie year, 1936, he had 206 his , 125 RBI, and hit .323. In 1938 he drove in 140 and batted .324. In 1942 his triple crown stats were way down, but he still managed a 147 OPS+.

                        After the war, he was not quite the same player....BUT, from 1946 through 1950, here was his 162 game averages:


                        33 HR 136 RBI .311 BA .396 OBP .560 SLG 156 OPS+.

                        The misconception is that Dimaggio was not nearly as great after the war, but in reality, he had a 159 OPS+ before 1943, and a 156 OPS+ from 1946 until 1950.

                        His 1948 season is certainly on the level of his best seasons pre-war.
                        Last edited by willshad; 01-21-2013, 09:27 AM.

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                        • #13
                          It's pretty amazing that Roxie Lawson received MVP votes with a 5.26 ERA and 1.61 WHIP. He was 18-7 though...Ahh, MVP voters.
                          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

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