Monday, June 01, 2009

Request for Help

On rating some outfielder defensive ability. I'm looking for students of baseball history here, because most of you never saw these guys play. I'm guessing most of you were not even alive to see these guys play.

I'm working on a rating system for defensive ability for the days before retrosheet data is available. The players below started their careers no earlier than 1900, and I am rating them through 1955. What I need is an opinion on how good they were, compared to the average player at their position (so if I were to ask how good Carl Crawford was, you compare him to the average left fielder, don't bother trying to figure out how he stacks up against Carlos Beltran or Torii Hunter. But I won't be asking about Carl Crawford. Sam Crawford maybe).

What you can do:

Rate these players from 1 to 5, with 1 being a terrible defender, 3 about average, and 5 being a great defender. I can't ask you to ignore stats for players who you never saw play, but try as best you can to base your rating on what opinions you might have read about them, instead of running off to Baseball Prospectus or open a copy of Total Baseball to see how they rate there. And consider their ability compared to the position I list them at, even though many may have played multiple outfield positions. "I don't know" is an acceptable response, if you have knowledge of some players and are reading the names of others for the first time. Rate them based on your opinion of their careers defensively.

The left fielders:
Sherry Magee
Zach Wheat
Duffy Lewis
Bobby Veach
Charlie Jamison
Goose Goslin
Heinie Manush
Al Simmons
Joe Medwick
Bob Johnson
Ted Williams
Ralph Kiner

center field:
Ty Cobb
Clyde Milan
Dode Paskert
Tris Speaker
Max Carey
Cy Williams
Edd Roush
Lloyd Waner
Sam West
Earl Averill
Doc Cramer
Joe DiMaggio
Dom DiMaggio

Right field:
Sam Crawford
Harry Hooper
Babe Ruth
Sam Rice
Harry Heilmann
Paul Waner
Mel Ott
Chuck Klein
Wally Moses
Bill Nicholson
Enos Slaughter

If you want to help, please post in the comments section below. I'll give a week, hope to see some responses, then post my ratings for this group.

21 Comments:

At 10:53 PM, Blogger KJOK said...

OK - these are all fairly well known players, so I'd be happy to help out...

 
At 6:48 AM, Blogger Chone Smith said...

Thanks. Just post your ratings here when you are ready.

 
At 10:48 PM, Blogger KJOK said...

Ratings. Using "I don't know" for anyone whose rep hasn't been very clear in my readings of their contemporary comments...

The left fielders:
Sherry Magee - 4
Zach Wheat - 2
Duffy Lewis - 5
Bobby Veach - 2
Charlie Jamison - 3
Goose Goslin - 4
Heinie Manush - 1
Al Simmons - 4
Joe Medwick - 2
Bob Johnson - 4
Ted Williams - 2
Ralph Kiner - 1

center field:
Ty Cobb - 3
Clyde Milan - I don't know
Dode Paskert - I don't know
Tris Speaker - 5
Max Carey - 4
Cy Williams - 2
Edd Roush - 3
Lloyd Waner - 4
Sam West - I don't know
Earl Averill - 2
Doc Cramer - 2
Joe DiMaggio - 5
Dom DiMaggio - 5

Right field:
Sam Crawford - 3
Harry Hooper - 5
Babe Ruth - 2
Sam Rice - 3
Harry Heilmann - 2
Paul Waner - 4
Mel Ott - 3
Chuck Klein - 2
Wally Moses - I don't know
Bill Nicholson - 1
Enos Slaughter - 4

 
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