Game of the Day: Notre Dame 40, Michigan State 37. It was almost like the Spartans decided they'd have a game that would mirror the way they usually play every season. Hot start, then a lousy finish. Being that this was on ESPN on ABC on ESPN2 on Disney this is now "one of the ages" or something. Of course if this game had been played in South Bend and thus been televised on NBC, ESPN probably wouldn't care that much. ESPN did nail it though in what this game meant as Notre Dame just earned $14 million last night with this win, though they seemed to celebrate the fact more than look down on it. The Irish simply don't have another challenging game the rest of the year until they travel to Los Angeles and even they get humiliated in that game they will still be guarenteed a BCS bowl. Like I said last week they will play themselves back into the national title picture whether you like or not.
WTF Score of the Day: Georgia 14, Colorado 13. There was no jaw dropping upset yesterday (sorry Ball State, you're barely I-A as it is) and this was as close as we were going to get. The Bulldogs were the Top 10 that was a mystery to people coming into this week. The mystery is over, they aren't a Top 10 team.
Other Games that I Make Little Analysis and Lame Jokes About
Arkansas 24, Alabama 23. You know people have been lynched in Alabama for a lot less than what kicker Leigh Tiffin did yesterday. Time to transfer to Florida State, kid. I'm guessing the good feelings Tide fans had for Mike Shula last year will dissapear in a hurry this year.
SMU 55, Arkansas State 9. Isn't there something in the NCAA rules that if you lose by more than 40 to SMU you are demoted to Division II the next day? I mean god damn, it's fucking SMU! Let's not forgot Arkansas State is the defending Sun Belt champions. I think a 46 year old Eric Dickerson could run circles around a Sun Belt defense.
Maryland 14, Florida International 10. Maybe it's time Ralph Friedgen started putting weight back on as the Terps were much better a 100 pounds ago.
Ohio State 28, Penn State 6. I was watching the A's game so I missed most of this one and I unfortunately missed sideline reporting about Joe Paterno almost shitting his pants during the game.
Houston 34, Oklahoma State 25. I only mention this game because Vern reads the blog and I won my match-up against him in my pick 'em contest yesterday because of this game. Kevin Kolb is yo daddy Vern!
Whack Pac Wrap Up
California 49, Arizona State 21. God damnit.
Washington 29, UCLA 19. Newsflash, the Huskies don't suck this year. Isaiah Stanback is becoming quite the competent quarterback.
USC 20, Arizona 3. Zzzzzz. Good lord was that boring. That Emmanuel Moody though is pretty damn good.
Oregon State 38, Idaho 0. If you're still wondering how Michigan State coul blow that game last night then remember that they acutally made Idaho look halfway decent in their opener.
Washington State 36, Stanford 10. Hey the Cardinal defense allowed 238 rushing yards, their best showing of the year. Progress! I wanna cry.
Jim Rice - Leftfielder
Boston Red Sox 1974-1989
13th year on the ballot
Past HOF Voting Results
1978 AL MVP
1983 AL Silver Slugger - OF
1984 AL Silver Slugger - OF
All-Star Selections: 8 (1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986)
1977: Homeruns, Total Bases, Slugging %
1978: Hits, Homeruns, RBI, Triples, Total Bases, Runs Created, Slugging %, OPS, OPS+
1979: Total Bases
1983: Homeruns, RBI, Total Bases
Hall of Fame Stats
Black Ink: Batting - 33 (49) (Average HOFer ≈ 27)
Gray Ink: Batting - 176 (56) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 42.9 (122) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 146.5 (82) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 4 (Orlando Cepeda, Duke Snider, Billy Williams, Willie Stargell)
Other Similar Batters: Andres Galarraga, Ellis Burks, Joe Carter, Dave Parker, Luis Gonzalez, Chili Davis
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 282
Career WARP3: 89.2
Would he get my vote?
No. A few years ago I was on the Rice bandwagon but I have since jumped off. He was fabulous from 1977-1979 but when you look at the rest of the career there's only two other great seasons and the offensive standards for a being HOF corner outfielder are almost as high as first basemen. He also benefitted from playing his entire career in Fenway Park and he had a large home/road split posting an OPS 131 points higher (.920 to .789) at Fenway than on the road. I think he needed two more good years to push him over the top but his skills eroded rapidly in his mid-30s so much so that he's become the poster boy for a player who has a sudden decline in production in their mid-30s. If he had been a great defensive outfielder or a great base stealer that could have also pushed him over the top but he was neither. I will say that he seems a tad underrated by WARP3. He is gaining support from the writers and I could see him getting a big bump in one his final two years on the ballot although he obviously no chance this year. There's a case to be made for him and I won't have a problem if he ever gets in but he doesn't get my imaginary vote.
My blog is still not dead...getting closer though. But I remembered the NBA Draft was this week so I can get another Draftback entry in. With the NBA Draft I take different approach as I rank the players using the basketball version of Win Shares. I don't know how reliable the statistic is, and I don't quite agree with all the rankings, but at least it's an objective way to compare these player's careers at this point.
1997 NBA Draft per Career Win Shares
1. Tim Duncan, San Antonio - 399 Career Win Shares (1st Pick)
2. Chauncey Billups, Boston - 252 (3rd)
3. Tracy McGrady, Toronto - 246 (9th)
4. Antonio Daniels, Vancouver - 131 (4th)
5. Derek Anderson, Cleveland - 120 (13th)
6. Keith Van Horn, Philadelphia (traded to New Jersey) - 115 (2nd)
7t. Tim Thomas, New Jersey (traded to Philadelphia) - 94 (7th)
7t. Bobby Jackson, Seattle (traded to Denver) - 94 (23rd)
9. Tony Battie, Denver - 91 (5th)
10t. Kelvin Cato, Dallas (traded to Portland) - 83 (15th)
10t. Brevin Knight, Cleveland - 83 (16th)
12. Austin Croshere, Indiana - 81 (12th)
13. Stephen Jackson, Phoenix - 79 (42nd)
14. Scott Pollard, Detroit - 78 (19th)
15. Alvin Williams, Portland - 61 (48th)
16t. Adonal Foyle, Golden State - 60 (8th)
16t. Anthony Johnson, Sacramento - 60 (39th)
18. Danny Fortson, Milwaukee (traded to Denver) - 57 (10th)
19. Mark Blount, Seattle - 56 (54th)
20. Jacque Vaughn, Utah - 51 (27th)
21. Marc Jackson, Golden State - 38 (37th)
22t. Maurice Taylor, L.A. Clippers - 37 (14th)
22t. Anthony Parker, New Jersey (traded to Philadelphia) - 37 (21st)
24. Ron Mercer, Boston - 33 (6th)
25. Cedric Henderson, Cleveland - 21 (44th)
26. Chris Crawford, Atlanta - 19 (50th)
27. Tariq Abdul-Wahad, Sacramento - 17 (11th)
28. Predrag Drobnjak, Washington - 15 (48th)
29. John Thomas, New York - 9 (25th)
30t. Chris Anstey, Portland (traded to Dallas) - 7 (19th)
30t. Charles Smith, Miami - 7 (26th)
32. Ed Gray, Atlanta - 3 (22nd)
33t. Rodrick Rhodes, Houston - 2 (24th)
33t. Keith Booth, Chicago - 2 (28th)
33t. Charles O'Bannon, Detroit - 2 (31st)
33t. Jerald Honeycutt, Milwaukee - 2 (38th)
33t. DeJuan Wheat, L.A. Lakers - 2 (51st)
38t. Johnny Taylor, Orlando - 1 (17th)
38t. Marko Milic, Philadelphia - 1 (33rd)
38t. Bubba Wells, Dallas - 1 (34th)
38t. Kebu Stewart, Philadelphia (35th)
38t. Jason Lawson, Denver - 1 (41st)
38t. Eric Washington, Orlando - 1 (46th)
The Zero Club
Paul Grant, Minnesota (20th)
James Cotton, Denver (32nd)
James Collins, Philadelphia (36th)
God Shammgod, Washington (45th)
Never Played in the NBA
Serge Zwikker, Houston (29th)
Mark Sanford, Miami (30th)
Eddie Elisma, Seattle (40th)
Gordon Malone, Minnesota (43rd)
Alain Digbeu, Atlanta (49th)
C.J. Bruton, Vancouver (52nd)
Paul Rogers, L.A. Lakers (53rd)
Ben Pepper, Boston (55th)
Nate Erdmann, Utah (56th)
Roberto Duenas, Chicago (57th)
Most Win Shares with Team they were Drafted by
1. Tim Duncan, 399
2. Austin Croshere, 74
3. Keith Van Horn, 60 (draft day trade)
4. Adonal Foyle, 56
5. Brevin Knight, 37
6. Tracy McGrady, 36
7. Cedric Henderson, 21
8. Derek Anderson, 20
9. Chris Crawford, 19
10. Ron Mercer, 15
I'm always happy with the Baseball Hall of Fame ballot is announced as it means content for my blog! I'll be doing profiles on each the first year nominees over the next few weeks but before I get to what I wanted to talk about in this entry, here are links to old profiles I did for the returnees on this year's ballot listed in order of where they finished in the voting last year.
1. Jim Rice 72.2% (15th and final year)
2. Andre Dawson 65.9% (8th)
3. Bert Blyleven 61.9% (12th)
4. Lee Smith 43.3% (7th)
5. Jack Morris 42.9% (10th)
6. Tommy John 29.1% (15th and final year)
7. Tim Raines 24.3% (2nd)
8. Mark McGwire 23.6% (3rd)
9. Alan Trammell 18.2% (8th)
10. Don Mattingly 15.8% (9th)
11. Dave Parker 15.1% (13th)
12. Dale Murphy 13.8% (11th)
13. Harold Baines 5.2% (3rd)
If a player played ten seasons in the Majors they are eligible for nomination on the baseball writer's ballot but believe it or not there actually is a screening process for the HOF ballot. I always find it interesting to see what players didn't make the cut and originally thought about making brief comments on each player but there were more players than I expected so this is just going to be a random list. Whole lot of back up catchers and middle relievers but there's a few decent players in there.
Brian L Hunter
-So Monmouth blew out Hampton 71-49 in the play in game tonight. Hampton had the worst RPI of any team with a winning record in the entire country and you can thank those conference tournaments for that. Now every year after this game ends the ESPN analyst has to talk about the school getting it's first ever NCAA tournament win, which always annoys me, and tonight was no different. Did Monmouth really win a tournamnet game? After all it is the "play in" game which by the wording of it seems to indicate that the winner of the game gets into the tournament. In my view Monmouth has now qualified for the tournament while Hampton has failed to do so. Monmouth will win its first real tournament game if it were to beat Villanova, which we know won't happen.
-The other postseason tournament started tonight, the NIT. I normally never pay attention to it but after a lackluster year Stanford finds themself in it, snapping their 11 year NCAA tournament streak. They beat Virginia 65-49 in their Opening Round game as UVA looked like a team that traveled 3000 miles for a game they didn't want to play which tends to happen in the NIT as motivation plays a big factor in how long a team lasts in it. Cardinal travel to play the biggest snub of the NCAA Tournament, Missouri State for their next game where they'll probably get slaughtered but hey for one night at least Stanford didn't look like mediocre team they are.
-Due to Stanford's lack of success they didn't have as many t.v. games as past years when they were a Top 10 team thus I paid a lot less attention to college basketball this year. This of course creates a problem filling out a bracket but sometimes less knowledge is a good thing. My typical formula is to look a trends for past tournaments. Things such as usually one 13, one 12, and one 11 seed will pull off a 1st round upset and at least one double digit seed will get into the Sweet 16. Of course this strategy is very hit and miss as it can really be a guessing game when it comes to picking true upset (#9 over #8, #10 over #7 aren't upsets). But I prefer doing this as I rarely play for money, including this year, so it makes it more interesting to try to have some low seed teams picked out that I can root for on the first couple of days. So here's my true upsets for the first round with very little actual research going into it:
Southern Illinois over West Virginia
Bradley over Kansas
Utah State over Washington
I then have Bradley beating Pittsburgh to become the 3rd #13 seed ever to get to the Sweet 16. Ya I've really lost it on that one. Northern Iowa is my #10 seed getting to the Sweet 16 after upsetting Ohio State. Other things of note is I having Syracuse beating Duke in the Sweet 16 which may just be my disgust for Duke but a #1 seed getting bumped for the Elite Eight is usually a strong bet. Everyone seems to be picking Tennessee to be an early exit so I put them into the Elite Eight before losing to UConn. I have Oklahoma reaching the Elite Eight which again I've probably lost it on that one. Then to finish it off I have Iowa getting all the way to the national championship game before losing to UConn.
-Annnnnnnnnnnd time to finish this off with some useless facts. Here's the biggest first round upset of every tournament since they expanded to 64 teams in 1985.
1985: #13 Navy 78, #4 LSU 55
1986: #14 Cleveland State 83, #3 Indiana 79
1987: #14 Austin Peay 68, #3 Illinois 67
1988: #14 Murray State 78, #3 N.C. State 75
1989: #14 Siena 80, #3 Stanford 78
1990: #14 Northern Iowa 74, #3 Missouri 71
1991: #15 Richmond 73, #2 Syracuse 69
1992: #14 East Tennessee State 87, #3 Arizona 80
1993: #15 Santa Clara 64, #2 Arizona 61
1994: #12 Wisconsin-Green Bay 61, #5 California 57
1995: #14 Weber State 79, #3 Michigan State 72
1996: #13 Princeton 43, #4 UCLA 41
1997: #15 Coppin State 78, #2 South Carolina 65
1998: #14 Richmond 62, #3 South Carolina 61
1999: #14 Weber State 76, #3 North Carolina 74
2000: #11 Pepperdine 77, #6 Indiana 57
2001: #15 Hampton 58, #2 Iowa State 57
2002: #13 UNC-Wilmington 93, #4 USC 89 OT
2003: #13 Tulsa 84, #4 Dayton 71
2004: #12 Manhattan 75, #5 Florida 60
2005: #14 Bucknell 64, # Kansas 63
Just trying to mix up the entires and come up with something different I figured with the NBA Playoffs starting Saturday it'd be time to do an NBA entry. Being a Golden State Warriors fan it's hard to get nostalgic about much of antyhing so I figured I'd pick the year that they last made the playoffs, the first post-Jordan year, and an NBA Finals that was overshadowed by a slow speed chase of a white Ford Bronco. I wasn't sure where I'd go with the entry but one thing that I'm trying to look more into are the sabermetric side of basketball statistics. It's not nearly as well known as baseball sabermetrics and I'm not completely sure how reliable they are.
There's two stats that have caught my interest, John Hollinger's Player Efficiency Rating and the basketball version of Win Shares that was created by the guy who runs basketball-reference.com. I actually did an entry a couple of months ago using Win Shares to compare how well players from the 1989 NBA Draft faired in their careers. Now since I'm not sure how reliable these are, and I didn't want to do a carbon copy of my Award Redos that I do baseball's MVP, I figured I'd just compare the All-NBA teams from the '93-94 season as voted by the media and who were the top players according to these two statiscal formuals.
'93-94 All-NBA Teams (media version)
F: Karl Malone, Utah (22.9 PER, 37 Win Shares)
F: Scottie Pippen, Chicago (23.2 PER, 32 Win Shares)
C: Hakeem Olajuwon, Houston (25.3 PER, 43 Win Shares)
G: John Stockton, Utah (22.5 PER, 38 Win Shares)
G: Latrell Sprewell, Golden State (15.9 PER, 28 Win Shares)
F: Charles Barkley, Phoenix (22.8 PER, 26 Win Shares)
F: Shawn Kemp, Seattle (22.9 PER, 32 Win Shares)
C: David Robinson, San Antonio (30.7 PER, 52 Win Shares)
G: Kevin Johnson, Phoenix (20.6 PER, 28 Win Shares)
G: Mitch Richmond, Sacramento (17.7 PER, 18 Win Shares)
F: Derrick Coleman, New Jersey (21.4 PER, 25 Win Shares)
F: Dominique Wilkins, Atlanta/L.A. Clippers (21.4 PER, 25 Win Shares)
C: Shaquille O'Neal, Orlando (28.5 PER, 47 Win Shares)
G: Gary Payton, Seattle (17.8 PER, 27 Win Shares)
G: Mark Price, Cleveland (22.7 PER, 26 Win Shares)
Now here's the top players by position using Player Efficieny Rating
5. Chris Webber, Golden State (21.7 PER)
4. Eric Murdock, Milwaukee (20.4 PER)
5. Reggie Miller, Indiana (20.2 PER)
6. Rod Strickland, Portland (19.9 PER)
Now using Win Shares
4. Otis Thorpe, Detroit (31 Win Shares)
5. Horace Grant, Chicago (30 Win Shares)
6. A.C. Green, Phoenix (29 Win Shares)
3. Mookie Blaylock, Atlanta (30 Win Shares)
4. Stacey Augmon, Atlanta (29 Win Shares)
Probably the most interesting thing is Robinson and O'Neal both coming out ahead of Olajuwon who won the league's MVP and then had that incredible postseason. Sprewell making the All-NBA first team appears to have been way off and I have no problem agreeing with him being overrated. The high PER for Eric Murdock looks a bit odd and he didn't fair to well according to Win Shares (only had 15).
Alan Trammell - Shortstop
Detroit Tigers 1977-1996
6th year on the ballot
Past HOF Voting Results
1980 AL Gold Glove - SS
1981 AL Gold Glove - SS
1983 AL Gold Glove - SS
1984 AL Gold Glove - SS
1984 World Series MVP
All-Star Selections: 6 (1980, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, 1990)
None of note
None of note
Hall of Fame Stats
Gray Ink: Batting - 48 (505) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 40.4 (146) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 118.5 (116) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 2 (Ryne Sandberg, Pee Wee Reese)
Other Similar Batters: Barry Larkin, B.J. Surhoff, Jay Bell, Lou Whitaker, Tony Fernandez, Julio Franco, Buddy Bell, Dave Concepcion
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 318
Career WARP3: 123.3
Would he get my vote?
Yes. An excellent peak gives him the nod from me, the first player I've voted "yes" for. Five times he had an OPS+ of 130 or better in a full season, six if you include his 1993 season although that came in 112 games. As you see Trammell is getting little support, not even at the level of Dave Concepcion. What has hurt Trammell the most is probably the era he played in. You could make a legitimate argument that in the last 25 years we've seen seven of the top 10 to 12 greatest shortstops of all-time as we are truly in a golden age for the position. Trammell's peers included Cal Ripken, Robin Yount, Ozzie Smith, and Barry Larkin and since he retired Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter (maybe needs one more good year) have joined that list. When he retired Trammell was without question one of the Top 10 shortstops of all-time. He shouldn't be punished because his career numbers were dwarfed by all-time greats like Ripken and Yount nor should he be punished for the feats of players who came after him like A-Rod and Jeter.
Tim McCarver's hatred for this man almost made me want to root for the Dodgers.
Left Fielder Rankings
1. Manny Ramirez, Red Sox/Dodgers
33.4 Win Shares
Year Ag Tm Lg G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG *OPS+ TB SH SF IBB HBP GDP
2008 36 TOT 153 552 102 183 36 1 37 121 3 0 87 124 .332 .430 .601 164 332 0 4 24 11 17
2. Carlos Quentin, White Sox
3. Matt Holliday, Rockies
4. Jason Bay, Pirates/Red Sox
5. Ryan Braun, Brewers
6. Johnny Damon, Yankees
7. Raul Ibanez, Mariners
8. Carlos Lee, Astros
9. Adam Dunn, Reds/Diamondbacks
10. Dave DeJesus, Royals
11. Jack Cust, A's
12. Pat Burrell, Phillies
13. Alfonso Soriano, Cubs
14. Conor Jackson, Diamondbacks
15. Garret Anderson, Angels
16. Luke Scott, Orioles
17. Fred Lewis, Giants
18. Josh Willingham, Marlins
19. Delmon Young, Twins
20. Willie Harris, Nationals
21. Ben Francisco, Indians
22. Carl Crawford, Rays
23. Gregor Blanco, Braves
Year Ag Tm Lg G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG *OPS+ TB SH SF IBB HBP GDP
2008 24 ATL NL 144 430 52 108 14 4 1 38 13 5 74 99 .251 .366 .309 83 133 6 3 2 6 3
24. Chase Headley, Padres
25. Luis Gonzalez, Marlins
26. Adam Lind, Blue Jays
27. Juan Pierre, Dodgers
28. Emil Brown, A's
29. David Dellucci, Indians
30. Jay Payton, Orioles
Vern asked for it so here it is. All the attention goes to the quarterbacks in the draft but there are some pretty impressive players at other positions that came out of this draft. This draft did live up to the hype.
1. Baltimore - John Elway, QB, Stanford
Right FBI Agent: Don't worry Mrs. Simpson we've helped hundreds of people in danger. We'll give you a new name, a new job, new identity.
Homer: (Raising hand) Oooh, I want to be John Elway! (Homer starts day dreaming about being John Elway. The ball is snapped to Homer and he dives over the pile into the endzone.)
Announcer: Elway takes the snap and runs it in for a touchdown! Thanks to Elway's Patanent last second magic the final score of Super Bowl XXX is Denver 7, San Francisco 56.
Homer:(Back to reality) Woo Hoo!
2. L.A. Rams - Eric Dickerson, RB, SMU
Probably due to his numerous contract holdouts Dickerson gets left out a lot now when talking about the greatest running back of all-time but he deserves consideration. How about that the #1 and #2 picks lived up to the hype? Doesn't happen very often.
3. Seattle - Curt Warner, RB, Penn State
A Penn State running back who wasn't a bust, strange. Had two 1400+ yards seasons.
4. Denver - Chris Hinton, T, Northwestern
Obviously didn't stay in Denver as he was traded to Baltimore in the Elway trade. Seven time Pro Bowl selection.
5. San Diego - Billy Ray Smith, LB, Arkansas
Took us to the 5th pick to find a non-Pro Bowl player but Smith was decent. Now an awful analyst on FSN's college football show that no one watches.
6. Chicago - Jimbo Covert, T, Pittsburgh
Certainly sounded like an offensive lineman. Two Pro Bowl selections.
7. Kansas City - Todd Blackledge, QB, Penn State
First true bust of the draft and it's fitting he was the one true bust of the famous quarterback class.
8. Philadelphia - Michael Haddix, RB, Mississippi State
Now we're getting some busts. Career high in rushing yards was 311.
9. Houston - Bruce Matthews, G, USC
Simply one of the greatest offensive lineman ever. Selected to 14 Pro Bowls.
10. N.Y. Giants - Terry Kinard, S, Clemson
Decent, 31 career interceptions.
11. Green Bay - Tim Lewis, CB, Pittsburgh
Had 12 interceptions in his first two years but a neck injury forced him into early retirement in 1986.
12. Buffalo - Tony Hunter, TE, Notre Dame
Only lasted four years.
13. Detroit - James Jones, RB, Florida
Hung around for a while but never cracked 1000 yards and only 3.6 career ypc.
14. Buffalo - Jim Kelly, QB, Miami
Didn't join the Bills until 1986 as he spent three years in the USFL with the Houston Gamblers. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2002.
15. New England - Tony Eason, QB, Illinois
You'll get differing opinions on whether Eason was a bust or not though he had a couple of good years but flamed out pretty quick.
16. Atlanta - Mike Pitts, DE, Alabama
Played 12 years despite not being all that good.
17. St. Louis - Leonard Smith, DB, McNeese State
Lasted nine seasons.
18. Chicago - Willie Gault, WR, Tennessee
Never really broke out as a star but was a big time deep threat.
19. Minnesota - Joey Browner, S, USC
37 career interceptions, six Pro Bowls.
20. San Diego - Gary Anderson, RB, Arkansas
Solid all-purpose back who had almost as many receiving yards as rushing.
21. Pittsburgh - Gabriel Rivera, DT, Texas Tech
Paralyzed in an accident while driving drunk during his rookie year. Take a bow loser.
22. San Diego - Gill Byrd, CB, San Jose State
Holds franchise record for interceptions with 42.
23. Dallas - Jim Jeffcoat, DE, Arizona State
Never a star but lasted 15 seasons and had 102 career sacks.
24. N.Y. Jets - Ken O'Brien, QB, UC Davis
I don't believe in '83 the draft had an audience yet but it would have been pretty fun to have seen Jets' fans react to them drafting a QB from UC Davis. Selected to two Pro Bowls.
25. Cincinnati - Dave Rimington, C, Nebraska
Unspectacular seven year career.
26. L.A. Raiders - Don Mosebar, T, USC
Played every o-line position in his 12 year career.
27. Miami - Dan Marino, QB, Pittsburgh
28. Washington - Darrell Green, CB, Texas A&I
Another all-time great to close out the first round.
Other Players of Note
32. L.A. Rams - Henry Ellard, WR, Fresno State
37. N.Y. Giants - Leonard Marshall, DT, LSU
39. Buffalo - Darryl Talley, LB, West Virginia
49. San Francisco - Roger Craig, RB, Nebraska
61. Kansas City - Albert Lewis, CB, Grambling
64. Chicago - Dave Duerson, S, Notre Dame
84. Washington - Charles Mann, DE, Nevada
110. L.A. Raiders - Greg Townsend, DE, TCU
167. Miami - Reggie Roby, P, Iowa
203. Chicago - Richard Dent, DE, Tennessee State
223. Miami - Mark Clayton, WR, Louisville
276. Cincinnati - Tim Krumrie, DT, Wisconsin
289. San Francisco - Jesse Sapolu, C, Hawaii
310. Denver - Karl Mecklenburg, LB, Minnesota
334. Miami - Anthony Carter, WR, Michigan
I'd figured I'd take a break from the usual lists to tell a quick story about the only World Series game I ever had the chance to attend. It's a pretty well known game because it didn't end being played as scheduled and it was 18 years ago today. It was Tuesday, October 17th, 1989 as the Oakland A's were to play the San Francisco Giants in Game 3 of their Bay Bridge World Series at Candlestick Park.
My Dad had bought tickets from Game 3 and 4 at Candlestick and he was going to take me to Game 3 and my brother to Game 4. Now you might wonder why as A's fans we'd have tickets to games in San Francisco and not Oakland but then you'd have to realize what a dump Candlestick Park was/is. The Oakland Coliseum today is thought of as one the worst ballparks around but at the time it was still regarded as good park and might as well have been Candem Yards compared to Candlestick. The A's had a larger season ticket base than the Giants at the time and with having the much nicer stadium the four games scheduled for Oakland were gone in an instant. Of course the games for Candlestick were gone quickly as well but there was actually people willing to give up those tickets for the right price unlike the games at the Coliseum. If I remember right I believe my Dad was able to buy our tickets off someone from he knew at work at $50 a piece in the nosebleed section. I don't think my Dad let me actually know how bad the seats really were but in the end would just be happy to be going to a World Series game especially with the A's out to a 2-0 series lead.
My memories of the day are pretty sketchy. I remember my Dad had bought a World Series program for me before hand for me to read on the way to the game. With the early 5:15 start time start time to get the game in east coast primetime we only got there probably about 20 minutes before the first pitch. Since we were so close to the game starting we decided to grab food before we got to the seats since there was no way I'd leave my seat during the game. Just as we got on line for food the stadium started shaking. We were on a concession line that was below the upper deck of the stadium and I remember just looking up as I guess that was my natural instinct was to see if anything was gonna fall. My Dad grabbed and rushed me to the little overhang by the concessions. Just a hunch if the stadium actually collapsed we'd be dead but if we actually survived what a better place to be trapped than by the food? For those of us who were not in their seats there wasn't even 100% certainty that it was earthquake or if the fans shook stadium. I remember right after the stadium stoppedd shaking a loud roar went up in the stadium and I heard a Giants fan near by yell "that's how you start a fucking game!" It was definately felt like a big earhtquake but it went by so quick and everything pretty much seemed fine. I was scared shitless but at least I was still going to see a World Series game.
Our seats were out towards rightfield and when we got to them I could see the leftfield foul pole was still shaking. I looked straight down the rightfield foul pole but one problem, you couldn't see rightfield at all from the angle of our seats and god damn did the field look far away. But again at least I was going to see a World Series game, if not really see the whole game itself with our view. Everyone seemed to think the game would be played although clearly delayed at that point. I can't remember at what time they called the game but shortly before that the gravity of the situation hit us when someone with a radio near by said this:
"The Bay Bridge collapsed."
That's a shit your pants moment right there. The image that went through my head was that the bridge went into the fucking water. What about the other bridges? How do we get home? As it turned out it was just a single portion of the upper deck of the bridge that collapse but at this point there was obvoiously going to be no baseball played that night. The rest of the night is a complete blur. I think my 11 year old brain had exploded that night and I was just worried about us getting home, although part of me was also excited by the prospect I might not have to school the next day. Although the Bay Bridge was the only bridge with major damage, all bridges were closed so we had to head south towards Santa Clara and go around the Bay to get home. This would normally be about a 40 minute drive but with so many people either trying to get home or get out of the city this turned into about a four hour trip just to get to the South Bay. Another problem that night was that because of the quake a lot of gas stations closed and we ended running out of gas in Santa Clara by the Great America theme park. On fumes my Dad got us into a hotel parking lot but as you can imagine that night all hotels were booked up. It was a very large hotel with a huge lobby and they were allowing people to come in without a room and sleep in the lobby which it appeared we'd end up doing. But my Dad was able to buy some gas from a gardner at the hotel from a lawnmower and enough to fill up to find an open gas station and get home. So about seven hours after the earthquake we were finally home. And I had to go to school. Fuck.
So at the start of this I mentioned that this would be about the only chance I had to go to a World Series game. Of course everyone the series resumed 10 days later but I didn't go. Why? Becuase I was a big fucking pussy. Okay I guess in reality i was just a scared kid who was going through some post traumatic shit but on the other hand I was just a pussy, who also watched way too much of the post-earthquake news coverage. I'm one of those people who will watch non-stop disaster news coverage. I remember for weeks after 9/11 watching the footage of the planes going into the WTC over and over and over and over again no matter how tough it was to watch. Every 9/11 when that footage starts getting replayed on t.v. again I always end up watching it. Back in '89 after the earthquake I just kept watching the news coverage of the earthquake and the home video footage shot in the immediate aftermath of the quake. This
in particular of a car falling down the collapsed portion of the bridge was played non-stop and I ended up just scaring myself into not going to the next game. To this day I'm actually not scared of earthquakes at all but I was then. So I regret that I've never had another chance since to go to a World Series game but I suppose also I should be happy the earthquake didn't last longer or otherwise I might have been a Candlestick Park sandwich.
The worst offensive season by a rightfielder has stood for over 100 years as Jack Dunn in 1902 had an OPS+ of 56 (.211/.256/.249). But for this modern exercise, 1999 was officially The Year of the Shitty Hitting Outfielder as players from that season have topped the list at each outfield spot.
Top 25 (or so) Worst Offensive Rightfielder Seasons since 1957 (per OPS+)
1. Derek Bell, 1999 - Houston Astros 66 OPS+ (.236/.306/.350)
2t. Cory Snyder, 1989 - Cleveland Indians 70
2t. Mike Hershberger, 1964 - Chicago White Sox 70
4. Felix Jose, 1993 - Kansas City Royals 71
5. Mike Hershberger, 1965 - Kansas City A's 72
6. Dave May, 1974 - Milwaukee Brewers 73
7t. Tony Womack, 1999 - Arizona Diamondbacks 77
7t. Hosken Powell, 1980 - Minnesota Twins 77
9t. Jeromy Burnitz, 2002 - New York Mets 80
9t. Steve Finley, 1990 - Baltimore Orioles 80
9t. Glenn Wilson, 1987 - Philadelphia Phillies 80
12. Dave Martinez, 2000 - Tampa Bay Devil Rays/Chicago White Sox/Texas Rangers/Toronto Blue Jays 81
13t. Alex Ochoa, 2001 - Cincinnati Reds/Colorado Rockies 82
13t. Jose Guillen, 1997 - Pittsburgh Pirates 82
13t. Darnell Coles, 1989 - Seattle Mariners 82
13t. Bob Bailor, 1978 - Toronto Blue Jays 82
17. Mark Kotsay, 1999 - Florida Marlins 83
18t. Randy Winn, 2006 - San Francisco Giants 84
18t. Alexis Rios, 2005 - Toronto Blue Jays 84
18t. Juan Encarnacion, 2004 - Los Angeles Dodgers/Florida Marlins 84
18t. Roger Cedeno, 2003 - New York Mets 84
18t. Jose Guillen, 1998 - Pittsburgh Pirates 84
18t. Rob Deer, 1993 - Detroit Tigers/Boston Red Sox 84
18t. Ron Fairly, 1967 - Los Angeles Dodgers 84
25t. Danny Bautista, 2004 - Arizona Diamondbacks 85
25t. Brian Jordan, 2000 - Atlanta Braves 85
25t. Pat Kelly, 1970 - Kansas City Royals 85
25t. Gino Cimoli, 1963 - Kansas City A's 85
In my 1989 A.L. MVP redo, I made reference the Orioles surprise run at the A.L. East title that year after their miserable 1988 season and that gave me my next subject for a Where'd They Go? entry.
Pretty much can sum up the Orioles '88 season by looking back at their first 21 games of the season.
April 4: Brewers 12, Orioles 0
April 6: Brewers 3, Orioles 1
April 8: Indians 3, Orioles 0
April 9: Indians 12, Orioles 1
April 10: Indians 6, Orioles 3
April 11: Indians 7, Orioles 2
April 12: Royals 6, Orioles 1
April 13: Royals 9, Orioles 3
April 14: Royals 4, Orioles 3
April 15: Indians 3, Orioles 2
April 16: Indians 1, Orioles 0
April 17: Indians 4, Orioles 1
April 19: Brewers 9, Orioles 5
April 20: Brewers 8, Orioles 6
April 21: Brewers 7, Orioles 1
April 22: Royals 13, Orioles 1
April 23: Royals 4, Orioles 3
April 24: Royals 3, Orioles 1
April 26: Twins 4, Orioles 2
April 27: Twins 7, Orioles 6
April 28: Twins 4, Orioles 2
It finally ended on April 29th in Chicago with a 9-0 win over the White Sox and their rookie starter Jack McDowell. Six of the 21 losses came against the Royals who Baltimore would go 0-12 against in 1988. Hey but after an 0-21 start you have no where to go but up but "up" for the Orioles was playing 32 games under .500 the rest of the season, ending up with 107 losses. Here's a look bacK at the team who epitomized losing for me as a kid.
C: Mickey Tettleton (.261/.330/.424, 15.8 VORP, 9 Win Shares) - Released by the A's right before the start of the season, in limited playing time Tettleton showed some of the power he'd display in future years, breaking out the following season with 26 homeruns. Traded to the Tigers after the 1990 season he'd play their four years and then three years in Texas, his career over after 1997.
1B: Eddie Murray (.284/.361/.474, 46.0 VORP, 21 Win Shares) - Once Cal Ripken is inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007, this Orioles team will be one of three teams from the 1988 season with more than one Hall of Famer on it's roster. Murray was still very productive into his 30's but this would be his last full season in Baltimore as he was traded to the Dodgers during the offseason for Juan Bell, Brian Holton, and Ken Howell (ehhhh). Tested the free agent waters mutliple times going for L.A. to the Mets after 1991 and then to Cleveland after 1993. He would make a return visit to the Orioles in 1996 via trade to hit his 500th homerun. Split time between the Angels and Dodgers in 1997, his final season. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2003.
2B: Billy Ripken (.207/.260/.258, -16.3 VORP, 4 Win Shares) - I have to imagine having Billy play the full season with brother Cal was a publicity stunt as there was no way Billy should have been playing a full season with Major League team, even one as bad as the Orioles, circa 1988. Outside of a decent 1990 season the younger Ripken never developed. Left Baltimore after 1992 he bounced around the Majors to Texas, Cleveland, Detroit, with even a return visit to the Orioles in 1996 mixed in.
3B: Rick Schu (.256/.316/.363, 4.4 VORP, 5 Win Shares) - Rene Gonzales played more games at 3rd but Schu made more starts, not that it really mattered. Originally pegged as the guy to the replace Mike Schmidt in Philadelphia as the Phillies actually moved Schmidt to 1st base in 1985 but he never lived up to the hype. Out of organized baseball from 1992 to 1995 made a brief appearance with the Expos in 1996.
SS: Cal Ripken (.264/.372/.431, 55.7 VORP, 25 Win Shares) - Had an off year in '87, Ripken bounced back to have a nice season in the Orioles terrible year. No need to go into the details of his career and will be a first ballot HOF selection next year.
LF: Pete Stanicek (.230/.313/.310, -3.6 VORP, 3 Win Shares) - Orioles had no set outfield all season long with Stanicek making just 46 starts in left but that was the most on the team. This was the only significant playing time he had in the Majors and his baseball career was over quickly after.
CF: Fred Lynn (.252/.312/.482, 16.1 VORP, 6 Win Shares) - Actually didn't finish the season in Baltimore as he was traded at the waiver deadline to Detroit for Chris Hoiles to make way for Brady Anderson. Could still hit for power at this point but it was obvious his career was starting to wide down. Finished his career in 1990 with San Diego.
RF: Joe Orsulak (.288/.331/.422, 12.2 VORP, 9 Win Shares) - Orsulak made a career out of being a servicable, platoon outfielder. First year in Baltimore he'd play there thru 1992 and the join the Mets. Was actually part of a deal in 1997 between the Marlins and Expos that sent Cliff Floyd to Florida and that would be his last season.
DH: Larry Sheets (.230/.302/.343, -7.1 VORP, 6 Win Shares) - Yup not a good sign when your DH puts up those numbers although Eddie Murray actually made the most starts at DH. Sheets was living off his 31 homeruns in the previous year in the homerun explosion of '87. Out of baseball after 1993.
Jose Bautista (91 ERA+, 16.5 VORP, 7 Win Shares) - Had put up some fairly impressive numbers in the minors but Bautista's low K rate showed that he wasn't going to be effective in the Majors. Managed to have a couple of decent years with the Cubs as a reliever in 1992/93. Bounced around mutliple teams and orginzations, last appearing in the Majors in 1997 with St. Louis.
Jeff Ballard (89 ERA+, 8.3 VORP, 6 Win Shares) - Tied for the team lead in wins with a grand total of eight he was another young pitcher the Orioles were counting on but had a sub 3.0 K/9 ratio. Some how managed to win 18 games the following year despite awful peripherals. Played a couple of seasons in Pittsburgh, his career over after 1994.
Jay Tibbs (72 ERA+, -10.4 VORP, 1 Win Share) - When you throw almost 160 innings and end up with a single Win Share you know you were bad. Win/Loss record is always deceiving but in the case of Tibbs' 4-15 record it wasn't. Hell how'd he manage to win four games? Actually went 5-0 with a 2.84 ERA the following year in only eight starts but I couldn't find out if he got hurt. Finished career with Pirates in 1990. Despite a short career was involved in four different trades.
Mike Boddicker (101 ERA+, 15.1 VORP, 7 Win Shares) - Another veteran who did not finish the season with the team, he was dealt to the Red Sox at the trade deadline for prospects Brady Anderson and Curt Schilling in a trade that would be scrutinized by Sox fans for several years although he was very effective during his time in Boston. Left Boston as a free agent after 1990 for Kansas City, finishing up his career in 1993 in Milwaukee.
Closer: Tom Niedenfuer (111 ERA+, 10.9 VORP, 7 Win Shares) - Always to be remembered for his two game winning homeruns given up to Ozzie Smith and Jack Clark in the 1985 NLCS. By this point Niedenfuer was no longer the strikeout artist he was but still effective. Signed with Seattle after the season where had an awful year, then finished up his career with a decent year in St. Louis.
ESPN is already doing the "Chasing Bonds" treatment for Albert Pujols but it really should be "Chasing Wagner." According to HardballTimes.com Pujols is on pace to tie Honus Wagner's single season record of 59 Win Shares set back in 1908. I am outraged the media is ignoring this potential historic event. Come on the homerun record has been broken twice in the last eight years, the Win Shares record hasn't been broken in 98 years! Don't you remember as a kid always wondering if someone would reach that magical #59?
Anyways no shock at all who's #1 in the N.L. still and I might as well give the entire Top 10 to Pujols. Not much else of note, two drop out and one of the "Most Overrated Players in Baseball" cracks to the Top 10.
Drop Outs: Carlos Delgado, Carlos Lee
#10 Bobby Abreu, Phillies
.276/.447/.503, 36 RC, .316 EQA, 13.8 VORP, 10 Win Shares
#9 Chase Utley, Phillies
.328/.406/.554, 35 RC, .298 EQA, 18.9 VORP, 10 Win Shares
#8 Bronson Arroyo, Reds
195 ERA+, 3.79 K/BB, 1.06 WHIP, 26.7 VORP, 8 Win Shares
#7 Carlos Beltran, Mets
.259/.382/.600, 32 RC, .324 EQA, 20.6 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#6 Morgan Ensberg, Astros
.272/.403/.627, 36 RC, .322 EQA, 20.8 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#5 Miguel Cabrera, Marlins
.335/.432/.599, 41 RC, .338 EQA, 25.4 VORP, 8 Win Shares
#4 Tom Glavine Mets
167 ERA+, 2.32 K/BB, 1.13 WHIP, 23.0 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#3 Lance Berkman, Astros
.296/.375/.605, 40 RC, .307 EQA, 17.1 VORP, 11 Win Shares
#2 Brandon Webb, Diamondbacks
191 ERA+, 6.00 K/BB, 1.10 WHIP, 28.1 VORP, 9 Win Shares
.323/.450/.804, 58 RC, .365 EQA, 37.8 VORP, 17 Win Shares
On the A.L. side there's a lot of change with five players dropping out from last week with a couple of familiar faces jumping in including Baseball Jesus himself. But the #1 spot stays the same and even though Thome isn't blowing away the rest of the league like Pujols he definently has a comfortable edge right now. Of course a name you will not see anywhere on this list is the WORST PLAYER EVER, MR. UNCLUTCH A-FRAUD!!!!! God damn how is he not playing in Single-A now? How do the Yankees win any games with him dragging down the club?
Drop Outs: Jonny Gomes, Vernon Wells, Alexis Rios, Nick Swisher, Ramon Hernandez
#10 Jose Lopez, Mariners
.292/.322/.497, 40 RC, .284 EQA, 15.8 VORP, 10 Win Shares
#9 Jose Contreras, White Sox
250 ERA+, 2.73 K/BB, 0.87 WHIP, 25.9 VORP, 8 Win Shares
#8 Kevin Youkilis, Red Sox
.319/.432/.503, 36 RC, .318 EQA, 15.7 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#7 Miguel Tejada, Orioles
.333/.391/.587, 35 RC, .325 EQA, 27.6 VORP, 8 Win Shares
#6 Jason Giambi, Yankees
.260/.464/.583, 40 RC, .348 EQA, 19.6 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#5 Manny Ramirez, Red Sox
.314/.441/.577, 36 RC, .337 EQA, 20.5 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#4 Derek Jeter, Yankees
.348/.433/.519, 41 RC, .325 EQA, 27.6 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#3 Travis Hafner, Indians
.311/.443/.627, 46 RC, .353 EQA, 26.6 VORP, 9 Win Shares
#2 Scott Kazmir, Devil Rays
199 ERA+, 3.19 K/BB, 1.28 WHIP, 26.2 VORP, 11 Win Shares
.304/.440/.684, 51 RC, .351 EQA, 28.7 VORP, 12 Win Shares
I've made it no secret I'm a junkie for original televised footage of classic sporting events. Back in the day when ESPN Classic actually showed classic games I would love watching classic games from the 70's and 80's. I was thrilled when two years ago MLB started releasing complete World Series boxsets of the 1975, 1979, and 1986 World Series which I promptly bought all three and did write ups of all three sets on the blog. Last year two more World Series sets were released, 1977 and 1987 but I have yet to start watching either. Considering how bad the A's will be this season I might finally crack those sets open when looking for alternative things to watch during the baseball season. Both the NBA and NHL have followed suit although I'm not as interested in those sets as I am for baseball and football, but I would pick up the 1987 NBA Finals set if they ever release it as I have fond memories of it as a bandwagon Laker fan when I was younger. There has even been a set of "classic" Notre Dame games released which I did a write up the Cathlolics vs. Convicts game but haven't gotten around to viewing any of other the games.
The NFL had been a long time holdout when it comes to airing any classic games, even on their own channel, but last year around the Super Bowl they finally started re-airing original Super Bowl broadcasts which continued this year. Also this past Fall they released a handful of DVD sets and individual DVDs with "classic" games. Their choices so far have been a bit odd. They released three sets of every playoff game from the 1999 Rams, 2000 Ravens, and 2002 Bucs seasons. The '99 Rams set would be kinda interesting as that year's Super Bowl had probably the best finish ever in a Super Bowl but I really have no interest in anything from the last ten years and there's nothing "classic" on either '00 Ravens or '02 Bucs set. They also released the 1980 NFC Championship game between the Eagles and Cowboys. Now that'd be a must have for an Eagles fan but the game was not particularly competitive and why release that game instead of the 1981 NFC Championship featuring "The Catch"? In addition there is a three game set of "classic" Cleveland Browns games (yes I know, what classic Browns games?) but the three games they picked left a lot to be desired. One of the games is a regular season blowout from 1989 against the Steelers and another is a playoff clinching win against the Falcons from 2002. If they swapped out either of those games for their double overtime win in the '86 playoffs against the Jets I would have bought it.
Now there were two others that I did decide to pick up, the 1992 AFC Wild Card Game featuring the Bills record comeback against the Oilers and they released an 11 game set of the 1985 Chicago Bears season. I actually haven't received the Bears set yet as I got in on backorder from DeepDiscountDVD.com when it was on sale for only $44 a month ago but should be receiving it any day now. Now there are not any real "classics" on that Bears set but the '85 Bears always held a special place in my childhood because the Bears were the first "it" team for me that you just had to watch and as I've mentioned before my earliest sports memory is watching Super Bowl XX. On the set there is their MNF loss to the Dolphins that ended their undefeated season, which is actually kind of surprising as these sets are of course marketed to the fans of the teams but having that game on the set made it an automatic purchase for me as I don't know if I ever watched the original live game.
So here's my complete list of of sports DVDs, that have original games on them:
1975 World Series
1977 World Series
1979 World Series
1986 World Series
1987 World Series
Notre Dame Collector's Edition (7 Games)
1992 AFC Wild Card Bills vs. Oilers
1985 Chicago Bears (11 Games)
In April MLB will be releasing the 2001 World Series boxset but again I'm not particularly interested in anything from the last decade, especially something that was televised by FOX, so I'm not sure if I'm going to pick that one up even if it was a true classic. Before then in early March there will be another World Series boxset released and, well....there's no fucking way I'm going to buy it.
This is one that I’ve been putting off as it seemed too obvious for an entry. No one in there right mind thinks in 1991 that Terry Pendleton was a better player than Barry Bonds except apparently the 12 baseball writers who voted for Pendleton over Bonds. Now Pendleton winning wasn’t on the level of Andre Dawson winning in 1987 and actually after reviewing it there certainly have been several worse choices for MVP in the past.
There’s an easy answer as to why Pendleton won the MVP and that was because the Braves were the feel good story of 1991. The Braves had lost 89 games or more in six consecutive seasons and had lost 97 the year before. But that all changed in ’91 when they made a shocking run at the N.L. West title and Pendleton received a good portion of the credit for their run. After all he wasn’t with the Braves before ‘91 and when he joins the team they suddenly became good so it must have been because of him, or at least that was probably the logic of some writers. Now I don’t want to slam Pendleton, he had a great year and he was the MVP of the Braves that season as he had a career year offensively after appearing to be washed at age 29 just a year earlier with the Cardinals. What would hurt Bonds in the MVP voting was A) he won the MVP the year before and did not have as good a year to follow it up, B) the Pirates ran away with the East title while the Braves were in a dog fight into the final weekend with the Dodgers for the West title so in September all eyes were on Atlanta, and C) he was already the miserable prick we know today and thus not liked by the media. Pendleton and Bonds received 22 of the 24 first place votes with Bonds’ teammate Bobby Bonilla receiving one. Not sure why someone picked Bonilla over Bonds but it did not cost Bonds the award and Bonilla had a great year. The other first place vote though went to Brett Butler who I’m assuming received it from a Dodgers writer. Butler had a good year but far from deserving to win it and he only placed 7th in the overall voting.
Now what eventually convinced me to write an entry on this one had little to do with the winner of the award but one bizarre 10th place vote. Dave Martinez was with the Expos at the time and I don’t think MVP and Dave Martinez have ever been uttered before but yet he showed up one writer’s ballot that year. Martinez played in 124 games, received 427 plate appearances, with his Triple Crow stats at .295 avg, 7 hr, 42 rbi. It got me thinking as to how in the world did a writer justify giving Dave Martinez an MVP vote, even if only a 10th place? The Expos lost 90 games that year so it wasn’t like he had some relevant “clutch” hits down the stretch that would caused a writer to overrate him. The two best players on the Expos in 1991 were his outfield mates Ivan Calderon and Larry Walker so it’s hard to imagine his play was noticed more over those two. Then it donned on me…the writer meant to vote for his teammate Dennis Martinez. El Presidente won the N.L. ERA title and it’s completely conceivable for a writer to have given the league leader in ERA a 10th place vote. I can’t confirm this is what happened but there is no other logical explanation for it.
1) Terry Pendleton 2) Barry Bonds 3) Bobby Bonilla 4) Will Clark 5) Howard Johnson 6) Ron Gant 7) Brett Butler 8) Lee Smith 9) Fred McGriff 10) Darryl Strawberry 11) Tom Glavine 12t) Jay Bell 12t) David Justice 14t) Andre Dawson 14t) John Smiley 16) Tony Gwynn 17t) John Kruk 17t) Barry Larkin 17t) Ryne Sandberg 20t) Dave Martinez 20t) Chris Sabo 20t) Ozzie Smith
.294/.367/.483, 97 RC, 139 OPS+, .311 EQA, 43.9 VORP, 25 Win Shares
.259/.342/.535, 105 RC, 145 OPS+, .308 EQA, 47.2 VORP, 25 Win Shares
153 ERA+, 2.78 K/BB, 1.10 WHIP, 55.5 VORP, 23 Win Shares
.278/.396/.494, 104 RC, 147 OPS+, .322 EQA, 48.7 VORP, 25 Win Shares
.304/.377/.454, 88 RC, 143 OPS+, .315 EQA, 54.2 VORP, 26 Win Shares
.319/.363/.517, 111 RC, 139 OPS+, .308 EQA, 53.6 VORP, 27 Win Shares
.302/.391/.492, 112 RC, 150 OPS+, .323 EQA, 49.9 VORP, 31 Win Shares
.291/.379/.485, 109 RC, 137 OPS+, .310 EQA, 52.5 VORP, 37 Win Shares
.301/.359/.536, 109 RC, 152 OPS+, .321 EQA, 53.2 VORP, 34 Win Shares
.292/.410/.514, 109 RC, 161 OPS+, .337 EQA, 61.6 VORP, 37 Win Shares
See...I put an asterisk. Cause he's a cheater. HAHAHAHA. People who use asterisks to mock Bonds are so clever.
Anyways you to have to admit that's one prophetic card.
Andre Dawson - Outfielder
Montreal Expos 1976-1986
Chicago Cubs 1987-1992
Boston Red Sox 1993-1994
Florida Marlins 1995-1996
6th year on the ballot
Past HOF Voting Results
1977 NL Rookie of the Year
1980 NL Gold Glove - OF
1980 NL Silver Slugger - OF
1981 NL Gold Glove - OF
1981 NL Silver Slugger - OF
1982 NL Gold Glove - OF
1983 NL Gold Glove - OF
1983 NL Silver Slugger - OF
1984 NL Gold Glove - OF
1985 NL Gold Glove - OF
1987 NL MVP
1987 NL Gold Glove - OF
1987 NL Silver Slugger - OF
1988 NL Gold Glove - OF
All-Star Selections: 8 (1981, 1982, 1983, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991)
1983: Hits, Total Bases
1987: Homeruns, RBI, Total Bases
Hall of Fame Stats
Black Ink: Batting - 11 (204) (Average HOFer ≈ 27)
Gray Ink: Batting - 164 (68) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 43.7 (115) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 118.0 (118) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 5 (Billy Williams, Tony Perez, Al Kaline, Ernie Banks, Dave Winfield)
Other Similar Batters: Dave Parker, Harold Baines, Dwight Evans, Vada Pinson, Fred McGriff
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 340
Career WARP3: 109.5
Would he get my vote?
No. Maybe I'm just too tough on outfielders as I've gone through about five of them on this ballot that I was just underwhelmed enough by them that I can't give them a vote. Dawson is the one I did the most waffling on due to defensive brilliance early in his career although his last three or four Gold Gloves were purely reputation awards. Part of the argument for him seems to be that if he hadn't his knees destroyed by the awful Olympic Stadium turf he would have reached several major career milestones which I wouldn't necessarily disagree with. But injuries and the enviroment you play in are part of the game so I can't really justify giving Dawson a bonus for what he might have done had he played on grass his whole career. I'm just not completely blown away by his peak and unimpressed by his career after age 28. Has received solid support though and if he ever does get in hopefully the HOF does the right thing and has him wear an Expos cap.
The worst offensive season by a centerfielder since 1901 was Alex Metzler in 1930 with an OPS+ of 56 (.236/.313/.302). The player on the top of this particular list came very close to breaking that record in 1999 (the year of shitting hitting outfielders?) and also made my Worst Hitters since 1986 list. Interesting thing about this list is that most of these punchless performances have happened in the last 20 years.
Top 25 (or so) Worst Offensive Centerfielder Seasons since 1957 (per OPS+)
1. Darren Lewis, 1999 - Boston Red Sox 57 OPS+ (.240/.311/.309)
2. Gary Pettis, 1988 - Detroit Tigers 61
3. Marquis Grissom, 2000 - Milwaukee Brewers 63
4. Darren Lewis, 1995 - San Francisco Giants/Cincinnati Reds 64
5t. Endy Chavez, 2003 - Montreal Expos 65
5t. Brian Hunter, 1998 - Detroit Tigers 65
5t. Chuck Carr, 1994 - Florida Marlins 65
5t. Brian McRrae, 1992 - Kansas City Royals 65
5t. Bill Virdon, 1964 - Pittsburgh Pirates 65
10. Peter Bergeron, 2000 - Montreal Expos 67
11t. Juan Pierre, 2002 - Colorado Rockies 68
11t. Gerald Williams, 1997 - Milwaukee Brewers 68
11t. Omar Moreno, 1982 - Pittsburgh Pirates 68
11t. Bill Virdon, 1962 - Pittsburgh Pirates 68
15t. Tom Goodwin, 2000 - Colorado Rockies/Los Angeles Dodgers 69
15t. Tom Goodwin, 1997 - Kansas City Royals/Texas Rangers 69
15t. Eric Yelding, 1990 - Houston Astros 69
18t. Tom Goodwin, 1996 - Kansas City Royals 70
18t. Darren Lewis, 1993 - San Francisco Giants 70
18t. Rick Manning, 1979 - Cleveland Indians 70
18t. Jim Piersall, 1962 - Washington Senators 70
22t. Doug Glanville, 2001 - Philadelphia Phillies 71
22t. Doug Glanville, 2000 - Philadelphia Phillies 71
22t. Chris Singleton, 2000 - Chicago White Sox 71
22t. Bob Dernier, 1985 - Chicago Cubs 71
22t. Rick Manning, 1983 - Cleveland Indians/Milwaukee Brewers 71
I had been looking for an excuse to do an entry on one of the most bizarre years in baseball history and the A.L. MVP pick in 1981 was controversial so might as well do a redo. 1981 featured the strike to end all strikes, until the 1994 strike trumped it of course. The players went on strike on June 12th that year over free agent compensation and did not comeback until August 9th, losing 712 games in the process.
Now the owners decided to come up with an idea to drum up some interest back in the sport to bring back a jaded fanbase after the strike ended: a split season. The standings as they were for games played before the strike would be considered the first half and then the second half would be the games played after the strike ended. An extra round of playoffs would be added where the division champ of the first half would meet the division champ of the second half. Now if the entire nation didn't say "What are they fucking stupid?" when the announced this, then they should have. My guess is the owners came up with this idea to try to recoup some of the revenue they lost from the strike by getting an extra round of playoffs.
You don't even have to be a baseball fan to see the obvious problems with the idea. First off the season restarted it meant all the division leaders thru June 11th had already clinched a playoff spot: Yankees, A's, Phillies, and Dodgers. These four teams had essentially nothing to play for beyond pride for two months as they already knew they were going to the playoffs. Doesn't really get the competitive juices flowing, you know? Second problem was the nightmare scenerio where teams who had better records overall for the entire season being left out of postseason play due the split season where otherwise they would have been division champions. Hey guess what? It happened.
St. Louis finished with a 59-43 record overall, 2 games better than second half N.L. East champion Montreal and 2 1/2 over first half champ Philadelphia. But it got much worse in the N.L. West. Cincinnati finished 66-42 overall, 4 games better than first half champ Los Angeles and 6 1/2 games better than second half champ Houston. The Reds had the best record in baseball in 1981 and did not go the playoffs. Let me repeat that, the team with the best record in baseball did not qualify for the postaseason. I'm surprised there wasn't riots in the streets of Cincinnati. The madness doesn't stop there as in the A.L. West, Kansas City won the second half title but finished the season 3 games under .500 overall. So we have the best team in baseball not in the playoffs and a team with a losing record in the playoffs. Almost makes you think they would have been better off shutting down the season like they would 13 years later.
Oh ya the A.L. MVP. Rollie Fingers won the award marking the first time a closer had won it. Already gone over this in the 1984 and 1992 redos that closers should not be winning the MVP. He would beat out Rickey Henderson in a very tight race. My only guess is that the resut was due to Fingers being the established, World Series hero while Henderson was only his second full season. It's also pretty rare for players with low homerun totals to win the award as he only hit six homeruns in the short '81 season. His teammate Tony Armas was the only other player to receive a first place vote and finished 4th overall despite being, ironically enough, the 4th best player on his own team that year.
1) Rollie Fingers 2) Rickey Henderson 3) Dwight Evans 4) Tony Armas 5) Eddie Murray 6) Carney Lansford 7) Dave Winfield 8) Cecil Cooper 9) Goose Gossage 10) Tom Paciorek 11) Dwayne Murphy 12) Kirk Gibson 13) Steve McCatty 14) Bobby Grich 15) Jack Morris 16) Al Oliver 17t) Buddy Bell 17th) Robin Yount 19) Bill Almon 20) Jerry Mumphrey 21t) Mike Hargrove 21t) Alan Trammell 23t) Steve Kemp 23t) Greg Luzinski 23t) Dennis Martinez 23t) Ken Singleton 27t) George Brett 27t) Dave Stieb
.336/.389/.439, 68 RC, 133 OPS+, .301 EQA, 32.4 VORP, 18 Win Shares
.294/.360/.464, 66 RC, 138 OPS+, .310 EQA, 34.7 VORP, 16 Win Shares
.259/.348/.493, 62 RC, 146 OPS+, .308 EQA, 29.3 VORP, 20 Win Shares
.326/.379/.509, 78 RC, 151 OPS+, .315 EQA, 39.6 VORP, 17 Win Shares
.294/.360/.534, 73 RC, 156 OPS+, .319 EQA, 40.1 VORP, 21 Win Shares
150 ERA+, 1.49 K/BB, 1.08 WHIP, 51.9 VORP, 18 Win Shares
.304/.378/.543, 72 RC, 164 OPS+, .325 EQA, 49.1 VORP, 21 Win Shares
.320/.363/.495, 75 RC, 151 OPS+, .316 EQA, 42.0 VORP, 22 Win Shares
.319/.408/.437, 76 RC, 150 OPS+, .323 EQA, 45.6 VORP, 27 Win Shares
.296/.415/.522, 90 RC, 163 OPS+, .333 EQA, 47.7 VORP, 26 Win Shares
Damn what kind of self hating A's fans am I to not give the award to RICKEY~? Also I'm taking an award away from a player who has his number retired by the A's. What have I done!?
Anyways as I mentioned in my entry about my first game that Evans has been very under valued over the years. Also have a couple of other good players who have been forgotten in Cecil Cooper and Bobby Grich. Hey and look STEVE McCATTY!!! What you don't remember Steve McCatty? Ya okay '81 was his only good year and he should have won the Cy Young. I guess a similar parallel would be 2003 when Esteban Loaiza blew away any other year he had but couldn't get the Cy Young. I did actually come close to putting Fingers at #10. Oh and that Tom Paciorek card is awesome.
Draftback...ain't I clever? The NFL Draft is later this month and the point of this blog is a lot of nostalgia so might as well look back at some old drafts, plus I've done no football content to this point. Pretty much picked in 1990 at random and because at first glance the 1st round looks rather uninspiring. I will only be looking back at the first round picks as to hell with going over the whole thing. Don't expect any real insight as unlike baseball there isn't much in terms of statisical analyst to do when it comes to football. There is Football Outsiders but their data only goes back five or six years.
1. Indianapolis - Jeff George, QB, Illinois
The Colts traded up to make this controversial choice at the time as it surprised many that he left Illinois early and some weren't even sure he was worth a 1st round pick, let alone the #1 choice overall. All things considered George didn't have that bad of a career but his habit of being a jackass kind of always painted him a bad light. Didn't help that he never made it to a Pro Bowl either.
2. N.Y. Jets - Blair Thomas, RB, Penn State
An overhyped Penn State running back who is a bust in the NFL? GET OUT! Actually showed signs of being a good NFL back in his rookie year but bad knees did him in.
3. Seattle - Cortez Kennedy, DT, Miami
Seven time Pro Bowl selection who would spend his entire 11-year career with the Seahawks. Definently a good pick here.
4. Tampa Bay - Keith McCants, LB, Alabama
Was rated #1 overall by many but he was a huge bust. Last I thing heard on him was he stole a car last year. Ya life didn't turn out to well for him.
5. San Diego - Junior Seau, LB, USC
No brainer here, 11 Pro Bowl selections and a future spot in Canton.
6. Chicago - Mark Carrier, DB, USC
Good NFL career as he burst on the scene his rookie year with a 10 interceptions on his way to Defensive Rookie of the Year. Selected to three Pro Bowls.
7. Detroit - Andre Ware, QB, Houston
Hands down the #1 rated QB coming into the draft and everyone thought he'd be star because he was drafted by a team that had the run and shoot offense. Hey how'd that turn out?
8. New England - Chris Singleton, LB, Arizona
Lasted seven years...um ya that's all I got.
9. Miami - Richmond Webb, T, Texas A&M
Another good pick here, made it to seven Pro Bowls, playing 11 of his 13 years in Miami.
10. New England - Ray Agnew, DE, N.C. State
Halfway decent player who hung around forever it seemed.
11. L.A. Raiders - Anthony Smith, DE, Arizona
Pass rushing specialist who was an absolute beast his first few years in the league.
12. Cincinnati - James Francis, LB, Baylor
Solid player who played nine seasons with the Bengals.
13. Kansas City - Percy Snow, LB, Michigan State
The only thing I remember about Snow was I had one of the "behind the scenes" NFL tapes and one segment was on the Chief's war room before the '90 Draft and they were pretty excited about Snow. He ended lasting a whole three years.
14. New Orleans - Renaldo Turnbull, DE, West Virginia
Part of those scary good Saints' linebacker cores from the early 90's. Decent career with his best year coming in 1993 when he had 13 sacks.
15. Houston - Lamar Lathon, LB, Houston
You can see this was a very deep linebacker draft. Solid career.
16. Buffalo - James Williams, DB, Fresno State
With a common name like that you think I'll actually know anything about the guy?
17. Dallas - Emmitt Smith, RB, Florida
Safe to say everyone except maybe San Diego regretted not taking him.
18. Green Bay - Tony Bennett, LB, Mississippi
Yet another linebacker who had a solid career.
19. Green Bay - Darrell Thompson, RB, Minnesota
1641 yards rushing, 3.5 YPC, 7 career touchdowns, gone after 1994. Ya not a good pick
20. Atlanta - Steve Broussard, RB, Washington State
You know it would have been kind of interesting to see what Broussard would have done in a standard offense rather than the run and shoot. Okay maybe not that interesting but might have given a not so non-descript career.
21. Pittsburgh - Eric Green, TE, Liberty
Pretty good tight end who made it to two Pro Bowls.
22. Philadelphia - Ben Smith, DB, Georgia
Played six years and really who noticed?
23. L.A. Rams - Bern Brostek, C, Washington
I don't think I paid as much attention to the NFL as I thought (and I don't pay that much attention today) I did. The guy played for the Rams so being a 49er fan you think I'd remember the guy with them playing each other twice a year but I don't.
24. N.Y Giants - Rodney Hampton, RB, Georgia
Good career, had five consecutive 1000 yard seasons from '91 to '95.
25. San Francisco - Dexter Carter, RB, Florida State
49ers had the right idea drafting a running back as they would end up being correct in their concerns about Roger Craig lasting much longer (he didn't) but Carter wasn't the guy to replace him. Actually led the 49ers in rushing his rookie year but that just tells you had bad their running game was.
Greg Vaughn, Left Fielder
Milwaukee Brewers 1989-1996
San Diego Padres 1996-1998
Cincinnati Reds 1999
Tampa Bay Devil Rays 2000-2002
Colorado Rockies 2003
1998 NL Silver Slugger - OF
All-Star Selections: 4 (1993, 1996, 1998, 2001)
September 7, 1999 - Cincinnati at Chicago (Game 2 of DH)
Hits three homeruns against the Cubs.
Hall of Fame Stats
Gray Ink: Batting - 22 (928) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 25.0 (418) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 50.0 (368) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: None
Top 10 Similar Batters: Jeromy Burnitz, Ron Gant, Rocky Colavito, Roy Sievers, Andruw Jones, Darryl Strawberry, David Justice, Greg Luzinski, Dave Kingman, Jack Clark
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 199
Career WARP3: 65.3
My Stupid Opinion
Vaughn was your prototypical low batting average slugger. His one really standout year in 1998 was of course completely overshadowed by a couple of other sluggers who's names escape me at the moment. Really nothing special about him outside of his power.
Dave Parker - Rightfielder
Pittsburgh Pirates 1973-1983
Cincinnati Reds 1984-1987
Oakland Athletics 1988-1989
Milwaukee Brewers 1990
California Angels 1991
Toronto Blue Jays 1991
11th year on the ballot
Past HOF Voting Results
1977 NL Gold Glove - OF
1978 NL MVP
1978 NL Gold Glove - OF
1979 NL Gold Glove - OF
1985 NL Silver Slugger - OF
1986 NL Silver Slugger - OF
1990 AL Silver Slugger - DH
All-Star Selections: 7 (1977, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1985, 1986, 1990)
1975: Slugging %
1977: Batting Average, Hits, Doubles
1978: Batting Average, Total Bases, Runs Created, Slugging %, OPS, OPS+
1985: Doubles, RBI, Total Bases
1986: Total Bases
Hall of Fame Stats
Black Ink: Batting - 26 (68) (Average HOFer ≈ 27)
Gray Ink: Batting - 145 (97) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 41.1 (138) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 125.5 (107) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 2 (Tony Perez, Billy Williams)
Other Similar Batters: Luis Gonzalez, Harold Baines, Andre Dawson, Al Oliver, Jim Rice, Rusty Staub, Chili Davis, Dwight Evans
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 327
Career WARP3: 86.3
Would he get my vote?
No. I'll always have a soft spot for the Cobra for the 1989 postseason where he pissed off all around douche bag Kelly Gruber for his flaps down homerun trot in the ALCS and also hit the first of many homeruns for the A's in the World Series. Also I'll say that for anyone who argues Jim Rice for the HOF they better also argue for Parker as well as I don't see how Rice is so close to being elected yet Parker has no chance at all. That being said I couldn't give him the imaginary vote mainly because when you get past his great peak of the late 70's he had a really ordinary career once the 80's started. Outside of 1985 in that decade he was an average and sometimes below average corner outfielder. Had a rifle for an arm and it appears he did deserve his 1977 Gold Glove (26 assists) but overall he was not a good defensive outfielder.
This seems to be turning into a weekly Bills update but something interesting happens to them every week. This week in their showdown with the Dolphins for first place in the AFC East, Jim Kelly was knocked out of the game in first half. Lucky for them they have one of the few decent back up quarterbacks on the game in Frank Reich and he led two 4th quarter touchdown drives for the 24-21 win. Bills sweep the season series giving them essentially a two game lead on the Dolphins now. In other quarterback injury news, the Bengals lost to the Eagles and lost Boomer Esiason to injury dimming their already very slim playoff hopes. The Browns season seemed to be spiraling out of control after three straight losses including two huge blow outs but this week they knocked off the divison leading Oilers to pull back within in a game of first palce. Last week the Bears appeared to be on the verge of turning their season around after their win against the Vikings but they shit the bed against the Colts this week and now the Vikings can clinch the division next week.
Week 12 Scores
San Francisco 21, Phoenix 10
SF: 8-3, PHX: 2-10
-Tom Rathman: 100 yards rushing
San Diego 24, New Orleans 20
SD: 6-5, NO: 5-6
-Billy Joe Tolliver: 179 yards passing
Indianapolis 28, Chicago 17
IND: 4-7, CHI: 5-6
-Albert Bentley: 77 yards rushing
Philadelphia 35, Cincinnati 21
PHI: 7-4, CIN: 4-7
-Boomer Esiason: leaves injured
Cleveland 24, Houston 21
CLE: 6-5, HOU: 7-4
-Bernie Kosar: 264 yards passing
Tampa Bay 24, Atlanta 9
TB: 4-7, ATL: 2-9
-Chris Miller: 31% comp pct, 3 int
Kansas City 30, Denver 6
KC: 6-5, DEN: 4-7
-Christian Okoye: 106 yards rushing
Buffalo 24, Miami 21
BUF: 9-2, MIA: 8-3
-Jim Kelly: leaves injured
L.A. Raiders 17, Seattle 14
RAI: 9-2, SEA: 5-6
-Bo Jackson: 85 yards rushing
Pittsburgh 17, Washington 7
PIT: 6-5, WAS: 7-4
-Bubby Brister: 202 yards passing
N.Y. Giants 33, Dallas 28
GIA: 9-2, DAL: 5-6
-David Meggett: 112 yards rushing
L.A. Rams 31, Detroit 21
RAM: 6-5, DET: 2-9
-Jim Everett: 259 yards passing
Minnesota 37, Green Bay 14
MIN: 10-2, GB: 3-8
-Steve Jordan: 4 rec, 105 yards
N.Y. Jets 34, New England 14
JET: 3-8, NE: 3-8
-Al Toon: 5 rec, 137 yards
Leaders thru Week 12
1. Phil Simms, 201.0
2. Dan Marino, 175.2
3. Randall Cunningham, 167.5
1. Warren Moon, 2770
2. Montana, 2684
3. Jim Everett, 2536
1t. Marino, 27
1t. Montana, 27
3. Moon, 26
1. Jerry Rice, 53
2t. Many tied with 36
1. Rice, 1355
2. Sterling Sharpe, 989
3. Eric Martin, 970
1. Rice, 14
2t. Many tied with 10
1. Neal Anderson, 1056
2. Christian Okoye, 962
3. Johnny Johnson, 945
1. Tom Rathman, 13
2. Johnson, 12
3. Many tied with 11
1. Joey Browner, 8
2t. Many tied with 7
1. Lawrence Taylor, 17
2. Bruce Smith, 15
3t. Many tied with 14
SPECIAL TEAMS LEADERS
Field Goals: Jeff Jaeger, 13
Punting Avg: Rohn Stark, 51.3
Punt Return Avg: Jeff Query, 12.8
Kick Return Avg: David Meggett, 20.5