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  • #76
    Originally posted by leecemark
    --I suspect those stats are not very reliable. Alot of data has been collected on the Negro Leagues in recent years and an out of print book, which FWIW I've never heard of, is almost certain to be behind the curve.
    I have John Holway's "Complete Book of Baseball's Negor Leagues" out from the library. The book was printed in 2001. Here are the all time NL hiiting leaders per his book:

    Over 2,000 ABs
    Jud Wilson .354
    John Beckwith .352
    Josh Gibson .351
    Bullet Joe Rogan .348
    Mule Suttles .341
    Oscar Charleston .340
    Pop Lloyd .337
    Fats Jenkins .337
    Cristobal Torriente .336
    Buck Leonard .335

    For Under 2,000 ABs
    Chino Smith .434 (694)
    Larry Doby .384 (581)
    Lazaro Salazar .382 (338)
    Artie Wilson .377 (863)
    Pancho Coimbre .377 (616)

    He has Monte Irvin with a .345 average (1045 Abs) and Roy Campanella at .307 (610 Abs).
    "Batting slumps? I never had one. When a guy hits .358, he doesn't have slumps."

    Rogers Hornsby, 1961

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    • #77
      [QUOTE=SHOELESSJOE3]
      Originally posted by blackout805
      I did see some stats a while back and saved them, I will search for them and post them. It was the batting averages of some who played in black baseball compared to how some did in white integrated minor league baseball and also compared to how they did in MLB.
      Interesting numbers. Some of those players were pretty darn good particularly that fellow named Mays. :-)

      This is a case in point when I see some posters rating Oscar Charleston up there with Ty, Willie, Tris, Mick, and JoeD. I have no doubt that Charleston was an absolute talent. But rate him above some of those guys is stretching it a bit. He unfortunately never got his chance in integrated MLB. But the fact is that he compiled his numbers against what is considered by most to be lesser pitching than was in MLB.
      I actually dislike taking this side of the discussion but some are buying into the 'legend' of these players who never got the chance to prove their worth in MLB, of whose stats are sketchy at best, who played year round in numerous leagues, and of whom have been a bit romanticized by time.
      Josh Gibson hit 900+ HRs??? Where is the documented proof of this? Where?
      Last edited by Bill Burgess; 01-24-2006, 08:18 PM.

      Yankees Fan Since 1957

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      • #78
        Originally posted by Dontworry
        " Against what pitchers? Top line hurlers? Don't forget it was exhibition games where the ML players may not have been bearing down. Plus I doubt the ML teams playing the exhibitions qualified as an All-Star team. "

        Well then I guess it is pure speculation, we'll never know who he faced.

        But did you read the comment walter johnson made of gibson ?

        " Of course, Ol' Satch isn't quite qualified to make that statement. he didn't pitch in the ML's either...so how could he really know?
        A more accurate statement could have been, "He was the greatest Negro League hitter who ever lived." "

        Actually satch won ROY at age 43.
        This was the text of my post:

        Of course, Ol' Satch isn't quite qualified to make that statement. he didn't pitch in the ML's either...so how could he really know?
        A more accurate statement could have been, "He was the greatest Negro League hitter who ever lived."

        It saddens me that Satch and Josh did not get to play in MLB (at least Paige got a taste of it albeit well after his prime). It also saddens me when I see well-versed baseball fans and historians 'accept' as gospel what cannot be proven through statistical record keeping and rely on what very well could be a degree of exaggeration.

        Yankees Fan Since 1957

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        • #79
          Originally posted by leecemark
          --I don't think anyone (and certainly most of us) are saying the level of play was as high in the Negro Leagues as it was in MLB. I agree that the pitching was further away from MLB quality than the hitting as well. The best Negro League hitters would not have hit well over .400 in the majors as they did in the Negro Leagues. That doesn't mean they wouldn't have been amoung the best. The weight of evidence says the best Negro Leaguers were as good (or better) than the best MLB players, even if the league as a whole was not.
          I don't think anybody is saying that the 'stars' of the NLs wouldn't have been stars in MLB. I tend to believe that they would have been. But their stats would not have been nearly as gaudy as they were in the NLs.

          The biggest problem I have is people taking the NL stars stats, compiled exclusively in the NLs, and using that draw conclusions of how good they were overall.

          An example is the poster who claims Oscar Charleston was possibly ahead of Willie Mays and Ty Cobb. Based on what? Sketchy statistics compiled in the NLs against what is generally considered 'lesser' pitching and stories where people are quoted as saying they were "great". It's this type of 'legend' and hoopla that people run with where I have a problem.

          Maybe Charleston was better than Willie and Ty. Maybe he wasn't. Maybe he was the 5th best. Or the 10th best. Or the 20th best. We simply don't know because he never got to display his skills in integrated MLB.

          Yankees Fan Since 1957

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          • #80
            --It seems we more or less agree on the quality of the Negro Leagues and its best players. I also agree we can't rate them with the same precision (which in itself is hardly precise) as major leaguers. I think its worth the effort anyway.
            --I am a little more conservative than some though. I can't see Charleston higher than 4th - and as low as 6th amoung CFers. I've got Gibson 3rd amoung catchers and Lloyd 3rd amoung SS. I've got Stearnes 6th amoung LFers (and could see him a slot lower behind Delahanty) and only a few other Negro Leaguers as contenders for the all time top 10s at their positions. The Negro League pitchers I'm even more sceptical of, with only Paige and Williams in my top 25 (or possibly even top 50).

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            • #81
              Originally posted by Bench 5
              I have John Holway's "Complete Book of Baseball's Negor Leagues" out from the library. The book was printed in 2001. Here are the all time NL hiiting leaders per his book:

              Over 2,000 ABs
              Jud Wilson .354
              John Beckwith .352
              Josh Gibson .351
              Bullet Joe Rogan .348
              Mule Suttles .341
              Oscar Charleston .340
              Pop Lloyd .337
              Fats Jenkins .337
              Cristobal Torriente .336
              Buck Leonard .335

              For Under 2,000 ABs
              Chino Smith .434 (694)
              Larry Doby .384 (581)
              Lazaro Salazar .382 (338)
              Artie Wilson .377 (863)
              Pancho Coimbre .377 (616)

              He has Monte Irvin with a .345 average (1045 Abs) and Roy Campanella at .307 (610 Abs).
              Thats where the problem comes in, too many different numbers. This is why it's so difficult to make an accurate evaluation of black hitters.I have seen almost half a dozen different numbers for Gibson's career batting average and home runs. Some in the .370s, some in the .350s and one as high as .381, which one is correct. His career home runs, I've seen 932, 908, 881 and then some in the 700s. I have never seen any compilation of what is known at this point that gives him more than 230 to 250. Myself, I'm sure those 230-250 numbers are too low.

              I'm getting away from the point I was trying to drive home, one that can be seen when comparing those blacks that played in black baseball, AAA minor leagues and MLB. The numbers show that on average there is significant difference, most, almost all hit higher in black baseball than MLB and even AAA minor league baseball. It's the pitching and thats the point that should always be considered when we speak of batting averages of the best in black baseball.

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              • #82
                Originally posted by Bench 5
                I have John Holway's "Complete Book of Baseball's Negor Leagues" out from the library. The book was printed in 2001. Here are the all time NL hiiting leaders per his book:

                He has Monte Irvin with a .345 average (1045 Abs) and Roy Campanella at .307 (610 Abs).
                This is what I have compiled by SABR

                Irvin .345 and 850 at bats.
                Campy .334 and 629 at bats.
                Not a big deal, your source may be correct, any way they are close, but again, different numbers and the difference gets bigger when we go back further than those two who played black baseball near the half century mark

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                • #83
                  --The 200 something HR are those documented in Negro League games for Gibson. The 800-900 are estimates based on his HR in all games. Since those include exhibitions against all levels of talent, some just town teams, as well as Mexican League and Winter Leagues the number is not very meanfull even if true. What does appear to be true is he was the best power hitter and perhaos the best hitter period of the Negro Leagues, Acheiving that from the catcher position is impressive whatever the actual numbers might be.

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                  • #84
                    On Gibson, think this one over.For those that believe he actually did hit 900+ home runs consider the following. Here is a player who hit more home runs than Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth and Barry Bonds who all hit the 700 club at the age of 39 and Gibson dided at the age of 35.

                    While he may have started playing at a young age, still to hard to believe, almost 150 more home runs than Aaron and almost 200 more home runs than Babe and Barry and never reached the age of 36.
                    Then we hear that he may have played 200 games in some seasons and that makes it possible, 900+ career home runs. When his high career batting average is taken to task we hear that it's possible because some seasons were so short.

                    It can't be both ways consider 200 game seasons and accept the fact thats why 900 is believable.

                    Accept some of his .370+ career batting average sources because of the short seasons and not that many career at bats.

                    This is the problem, too many different numbers, different sources we just don't know all the numbers, which are correct.

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                    • #85
                      Originally posted by leecemark
                      --The 200 something HR are those documented in Negro League games for Gibson. The 800-900 are estimates based on his HR in all games. Since those include exhibitions against all levels of talent, some just town teams, as well as Mexican League and Winter Leagues the number is not very meanfull even if true. What does appear to be true is he was the best power hitter and perhaos the best hitter period of the Negro Leagues, Acheiving that from the catcher position is impressive whatever the actual numbers might be.
                      Well I was writing up my previous post( post #84) and did not read this post of yours till I had already posted mine. I see we do agree that the number of home runs is not that meaningful since some were hit in games out of black baseball, exhibition and some in winter ball.

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                      • #86
                        --Nevermind then

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                        • #87
                          I am a Huge Mike Piazza fan/supporter, and have been ever since he started playing, but I have to take Josh Gibson over Piazza. Gibson could field, hit- do everything! If there was ever proof that Gibson was better, what other ballplayer was ever called, "the black Babe Ruth?"
                          Last edited by Sashag; 03-06-2006, 10:22 PM.
                          “it is impossible to understand America without a thorough knowledge of baseball” -Mcafee

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                          • #88
                            Originally posted by Sashag
                            I am a Huge Mike Piazza fan/supporter, and have been ever since he started playing, but I have to take Josh Gibson over Piazza. Gibson could field, hit- do everything! If there was ever proof that Gibson was better, what other ballplayer was ever called, "the black Babe Ruth?"
                            I have Gibson over Piazza, but Gibson was never known as a great fielder and was a horrible runner for his whole career. Piazza probably would have received similar accolades to Gibson if he had played in the Negro Leagues.

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                            • #89
                              Gibson or Piazza? This is a tough question. Since most of us have seen Piazza play it's tough because we see all of Piazza, his strengths and his weaknesses. We never hear about Gibson's weaknesses since very little is written about that. This has the effect on inflating Gibson's "value" somewhat. Also, I believe Piazza is underrated here at BBF. But the man was an awesome hitter. Check out his career line.

                              http://www.baseball-reference.com/p/piazzmi01.shtml

                              His 1997 season was simply awesome

                              .362/.431/.638, 40 HR, 124 RBI, 104 R, 201 H, 186 OPS+

                              Are you fricking kidding me! Yes, Piazza played in an offensive era but he played his prime years in extreme pitcher's parks. I have a hard time believing that Gibson could have had seasons that would have dwarfed Mike's 1997 season. I tend to believe Gibson could have had seasons simliar to Mike's 1997 season but certainly not significantly better.
                              Last edited by Honus Wagner Rules; 03-28-2006, 07:26 AM.
                              Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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                              • #90
                                Gibson would've been the first catcher to ever slug .700 before

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