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2019 Preseason Forecast
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|2014-06-26 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Better Hall of Famer: Jack Morris or Zack Morris?|
(Tim from Arkansas)
|Dude. Are you just going to lob pitches over the plate so I can knock them over the park? Zack Morris. First ballot. Beautiful hair. (J.P. Breen)|
|2013-01-14 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Why is it that when no players get voted into the Hall of Fame, sabermetrics and sabermetricians get blamed for it? For humor purposes, Mitch Williams of MLB Network blames Ivy League schools like Yale and Harvard as to why stats are bigger factors in scouting, awards and HOF voting. Not sure when exactly going to Yale or Harvard suddenly became a "bad thing." I boils my blood when I hear on sports radio evening shows that "stat geeks" and nerds don't vote in PED users or players that are "very good" and not-so-much all-time greats. |
(jlarsen from Chicago)
|Is this a thing people are saying? I haven't heard anyone blaming stat geeks and nerds for not electing PED guys. If anything, it tends to be the traditionalists leaving them off their ballots. I'd think Jack Morris was the only candidate who might have been hurt by the increased influence of advanced stats, which I wrote about last week. (Ben Lindbergh)|
|2013-01-11 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Fill in the blank: If I think Jack Morris is an HOF'er but not Craig Biggio, Jeff Bagwell, and- for Pete's sake!- Edgar Martinez, I am a _______.|
(Eusebio from Houston)
|...believer that election to the Hall of Fame should be based on narrative rather than statistical evidence. (Jay Jaffe on the Hall of Fame)|
|2013-01-11 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Dave Steib trounces Jack Morris in career JAWS. Do you think the average HoF voter knows that?|
(Jim Clancy from Exhibition Stadium)
|The average HOF voter probably couldn't give a shit about JAWS; the above-average voter may, however, and I applaud his or her good taste. The average voter also couldn't give a shit about Stieb, who received just 1.4 percent of the vote in 2004, a year that Morris received 26.3 percent. Back then, I had the two right about even in what wasn't even yet named JAWS and still used a 5-consecutive season definition of peak: http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=2510 (Jay Jaffe on the Hall of Fame)|
|2013-01-11 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Jeff Bagwell and Craig Biggio are both easily Top 15 players all-time at their position (and Bagwell maybe even Top 5); Schilling is one of the best RH pitchers of the last fifty years, both regular season and certainly post-season, couldn't even get 40%; Bernie Williams and Kenny Lofton, two of the best CF of the last 30 years, didn't even get enough to stay on the ballot. How broken is the system? Can it even be fixed? What would you say to someone that says that, considering there are mediocre guys that have been elected and excellent ones that have been snubbed, that the Hall of Fame has been rendered meaningless as an honor?|
(Ashitaka1110 from Houston, TX)
|I don't think the system is as broken as you suggest, by any means - one year is a small sample size by which to judge the results you mention. Bagwell and Biggio will be in very soon. I have Bernie well below the standard, and Lofton slightly below, so I can't really get too up in arms over that portion of what you wrote.
The Hall is still a pretty great honor; even if some of the wrong guys are getting in, to me it's far more worth fighting for the right guys getting in than walking away in disgust. The presence of Jim Rice or even Jack Morris in Cooperstown shouldn't ruin it for anyone. (Jay Jaffe on the Hall of Fame)
|2013-01-11 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Jay, if I remember correctly, your general view on setting the bar for admission is that new Hall of Famers should be at least as good as current HOFers at their position, as measured by JAWS. Are there any positions or time periods for which you would like to see the bar lowered? (For example, third basemen seem generally underrepresented to me, as do 1970s position players and 1980s pitchers.) |
(Rob from DC)
|Well, adjusting for position distribution, as I began doing last year, is one way to lower the standards a hair to account for shortcomings. Another is to simply note the lack of representation at a given position for a given era. Telling me that Jack Morris led the majors in wins in a given 10-year stretch doesn't move the needle for me, telling me he led the majors in WAR among pitchers for a 10-year stretch is a supporting point beyond the simple JAWS yes/no. (Jay Jaffe on the Hall of Fame)|
|2013-01-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Thanks for doing these chats; I always appreciate insights from someone with front-office experience. Here's a Q pertaining to that experience. One of the arguments against Jack Morris as a Hall of Famer is that pitchers like him in his generation -- Dave Stieb, Frank Tanana, etc. -- got rejected by HoF voters very quickly. My question is: if guys like Stieb and Tanana were so good, why weren't the high rollers of the time bidding for their services when they hit free agency? Was there an unspoken rule (collusion?) against poaching other GMs' free agents? Or did they not understand talent evaluation very well? Something else?|
(Bill from New Mexico)
|I enjoy these chats, Bill from New Mexico. Thanks for your question. I saw Morris a ton during his career, as I worked in the AL my first 19 years in the game and was in the same league. Jack Morris was damn good, a winner, and a guy who grinned out wins and threw tons of innings. It is hard to evaluate each player's career in regards to roster decisions unles you're his agent, because that's the only person who really knows what was really out there. I certainly did not reject him as a HOF candidate, just felt he was REALLY good, not HOF. (Dan Evans)|
|2012-12-11 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Would you rather a) see Tim Raines and Jack Morris go into the Hall of Fame together this year or b) see neither of them ever go in?|
(carligula from Oakland)
|I feel sort of like a jerk for saying this, but probably neither. I don't really like that that's my answer; it seems really petty, and certainly there's more happiness in the world if more people feel special than if fewer do. I just think Morris is further below the standard than Raines is above it. I also think undeserved praise has a way of backfiring, and makes people bat down that praise with greater ferocity. If Morris makes it, he makes it and he'll be happy. He'll also be a punchline/negative example for a long time. (Sam Miller)|
|2012-01-12 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Which pitchers stand out as personal favorites that never panned out like you thought they would? |
(PepeShady from St Paul)
|Bret Saberhagen. Kevin Appier. I was sure both of them would be Hall of Famers. Though if Jack Morris gets in, I may start pushing their candidacies a little harder. Apparently you never know. They can get back on the ballot, right?
More recently, I had high hopes for Brett Anderson. I guess he may yet fulfill those. Erik Bedard...I sense a theme. I've been a big Gavin Floyd fan for a while, and though he's been good, he's never broken through to great. On a much lower tier, Chad Gaudin. (Mike Fast)
|2012-01-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)||If Jack Morris is elected based on the "pitching to the score" and "he was an ace" and "all the post-season fireworks" argument(s), doesn't that essentially seal the candidacies of Bernie Williams and Posada along the same lines of thought?|
(BL from Bozeman, MT)
|No, because intellectual consistency isn't one of the more reliable traits among Hall of Fame voters. (Jay Jaffe's Hall of Fame Special)|
|2012-01-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)||In your heart of hearts...is the Jack Morris bashing warranted or not?
Also...the Jay-stache is remarkable.|
(Jesus Melendez from Hall of Very Good)
|The strength of the Morris bashing is a reaction to the obstinacy of the old-school, you-had-to-see-him, just-wins-baby, oh-yeah-and-opening-day-starts-though-we've-never-considered-those-before voters.
Thanks for the kind words on the mustache! (Jay Jaffe's Hall of Fame Special)
|2012-01-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)||It is nice here.|
(Envious Mustache from Elysian Fields)
|And the winner is... Barry Larkin with 86.4 percent of the vote, the only player elected this year as expected. Some big surprises, good and bad, among the next wave. Jack Morris at 66.7 percent has put himself in good position to get over the top despite the crowd, Jeff Bagwell at 56.0 percent made a solid advance in the face of an odious whisper campaign, Lee Smith got to 50.6 percent, Tim Raines is very close to that mark at 48.7 percent, and even Alan Trammell posted a solid gain at 36.8 percent. Hell, Bernie Williams got 9.6 percent and stays on the ballot after all. (Jay Jaffe's Hall of Fame Special)|
|2012-01-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)||So I guess Jack Morris is bordering on inevitable. That's higher than anyone that hasn't been enshrined has ever gone in the vote, right?|
(Mike from Back to Work)
|I'll have a better answer for tomorrow's column but yes, right now he suddenly - shockingly, even - looks inevitable. (Jay Jaffe's Hall of Fame Special)|
|2011-05-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Nice start for A.J. - HBP on an 0-2 count and a wild pickoff throw to 1st to get Sizemore to 3rd. April is over ...|
(goodwine10 from New York, NY)
|These things happen. What's more interesting to me is that for all the supposed wonderfulness of Burnett's April, his ERA was only about league average... YES just flashed the names Kirk Gibson, Jack Morris, Alan Trammell, and Lou Whitaker. At least one of those guys should be in the Hall of Fame, and it's not Morris. (Steven Goldman)|
|2011-01-12 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Steven,
As our thoughts are with those lost in the Tuscon assassination (including Dallas Green's granddaughter), do you have any thoughts on where we as a society go from here?|
(Eurbiel Durazo from America)
|A tough question to answer in a chat, or for that matter in a 500-page dissertation. I'm cynical enough to believe that our society has been so debauched that we don't go anywhere that we weren't headed before Saturday. As I wrote over at the PB (http://bit.ly/hDfOt2), we tend to frame all of our disagreements in binary terms-my rights OR yours, like it's a Hall of Fame debate. Either Jack Morris is in the Hall of Fame or he's not, either I get my way or you get yours, and there is no middle ground. When you do that, a republic stops dead in the water, because compromise is lost. The whole idea is that it's my rights AND yours, and I give a little and you give a little and we have a better society as a result. We've forgotten that, and as a result, we have that kind of inflammatory rhetoric that is fun for sane people to watch on TV or listen to on the radio but is catnip for deranged f--kheads like that guy in Arizona. (Steven Goldman)|
|2011-01-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)||I always thought Alan Trammell and Lou Whitaker are given a poor shake. If they had played together in New York all those years, They'd be In! Your thoughts?
(Avenger Dad from Jenny Lind, Ca)
|There's no doubt that east coast media exposure would have helped that duo - you could put them in Philadelphia or Boston and probably still see a significant bump.
What kills me is that there are voters who will eagerly check the box next to Jack Morris' name without recognizing that he had outstanding run support and defensive support, and that Trammell and Whitaker were a big part of that for his entire career as a Tiger. Yet those voters let Whitaker slip off the ballot after a single vote, and still won't give Trammell the time of day. (Jay Jaffe)
|2011-01-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Hey Jay love your work. It's helps younger guys like me (23) put players into a HOF perspective. Anyways, I can't rememeber where you stand on the Jack Morris stuff. Morris for the HOF is pure sillyness, right?|
(Justin from Chicago)
|I'm firmly against the election of Morris (http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=12611), which isn't to say that he didn't have some great seasons and some truly transcendent moments. I watched his 1984 no-hitter and his 1991 World Series Game Seven start and both still give me goosebumps thinking about. But beyond the ever-growing legend of that latter game, he just wasn't good enough at preventing runs to merit inclusion. (Jay Jaffe)|
|2011-01-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)||I can see the writing on the wall already. The next Jack Morris will be Andy Pettitte. Good career inflated by mythmaking. Do you agree? Secondly, so many myth-making pitchers coming up, some worthy of Hall anyway, like Smoltz and Schilling, but do you see all of these "big game" pitchers hurting Mussina's vote totals?|
(tommybones from brooklyn)
|Morris and Pettitte: agreed, to at least some extent. Both have had the benefit of robust offensive support and some great postseason performances, with their failures in the latter arena swept to the side. Pettitte will have the burden of his HGH connections to contend with as well. Even divorced from that, I don't think he's got the numbers. See http://www.pinstripedbible.com/2010/10/19/is-dandy-andy-cooperstown-material/ for my latest take.
As for Smoltz, he's got the Eckersley precedent of a hybrid starter/closer career. Schilling will have a whole lot of legend and some legitimately great postseason performance to buoy numbers that are superceded by those of Mussina. It will be interesting to see how that plays out - I'm not sure I can guess right now, except that neither of them will go in on the first ballot. (Jay Jaffe)
|2011-01-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)||If Jack Morris doesn't pitch Game 7 in 1991, is he even on the ballot at this point?|
(RMR from Chicago)
|Well, Tommy John and Jim Kaat lasted 15 years with just shy of 300 wins, and other than Blyleven, Morris has the highest win total of anyone who's been on the ballot in years, so yes, I think Morris would still be on the ballot, albeit with well below 50 percent of the vote. (Jay Jaffe)|
|2010-06-28 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Jay, Jack Morris isn't actually going to get elected to the Hall of Fame one of these years, is he? The Legend of the Guy Who Pitched to the Score is even more specious than the Legend of the Feared Hitter. The wave of great pitchers reaching eligibility in the next few years will be sufficient to hold off his charge, right? |
(David from CT)
|Morris has been above 40 percent on three of the past four BBWAA ballots, and if you look at where Bert Blyleven was after a decade on the ballot, Black Jack is only 3.7 percent behind at 44.0 percent. That said, Byleven got a real push from the grassroots internet supporters, of which I'm a card-carrying member, and gained another 25+ percent. Morris doesn't seem likely to get that anytime soon. (Jay Jaffe)|
|2010-06-28 14:00:00 (link to chat)||By happy coincidence, I daydreamed a question for you not more than a day ago, and here you are. Not that I'm trying to sneak in the backdoor, but do consistent players get any sort of boost in the public's estimation of their HoF chances, and should they? I think here of a Jack Morris. Even though his heights were more very good than HoF, his workmanlike consistency--on top of being relatable and making him seem like a good guy--kept Tigers fans from a lot of crappy starts from a more up and down pitcher. I wonder if consistency (if it could be defined) would ever end up having a predictive value on eventual election. Thanks for suffering a long question, Jay. |
(Jim Clancy from Exhibition Stadium)
|Consistency is pretty difficult to quantify, except perhaps in the way it enables players to accumulate the benchmark stats that most of the public regards as constituting "a good season." I think of Steve Garvey rapping out his 200 hits, 100 RBI and .300 batting average every year and how highly esteemed he was in his day, and yet how far his star has fallen in light of a more modern statistical reckoning. But then I also think of guys like Blyleven and Don Sutton who were pretty consistent on some levels but didn't rack up the 20-win seasons that some of their peers did, and aren't held on the same level as them even if they may have been more valuable.
In the end I suspect peak value holds more sway on the public's estimation of a potential HoFer, because people tend to remember the high points, the outliers, the things that break pattern rather than the pattern itself. (Jay Jaffe)
|2010-05-11 16:30:00 (link to chat)||How many more "Halladay like" seasons does Halladay need before he's a lock for the Hall Of Fame?|
(Susan from New York)
|That's more of a Jay Jaffe question than a question for me, but I see he's just shy of 50 career WARP. I would think that's low, but I would also think Jack Morris' total is low. My best cop-out answer would be to say that if Halladay stays good enough that the Phillies pick up his 2014 option at $20 mill, he's probably getting close. (Matt Swartz)|
|2010-05-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Is it fair to say AJ Burnett's career has been a slight disappointment? I assume most people thought he would have at least 1 Cy Young award by now and/or been the staff ace of a team.|
(Zooey from LA)
|For the stuff he has, yes, I think you can say he's been a disappointment. Still had a very good career, but he's rarely consistent with his greatness.
Maybe he'll win a few big World Series games before this thing is over though, and then we can see about putting him in the Hall of Fame next to Jack Morris because he pitched to the score. (Marc Normandin)
|2010-01-12 18:30:00 (link to chat)||Do you think Jack Morris will make it into the HOF? He seems to be making a Jim rice like push with his vote totals|
(mafrth77 from Boston)
|Given his recent push I can certainly foresee him getting in, but he will run out of years eventually and there are some very solid classes coming up with players that may take away from his vote totals. If I had to bet, though, yeah, he'll get in. (Eric Seidman)|
|2010-01-06 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Jay, I was surprised to see how well Kevin Appier stacks up against Jack Morris in your article today (granted, over a shorter period).
How hard would the heads of people like Shaughnessy explode if you you tried to convince them that KEVIN APPIER was a more deserving candidate than Jack Morris?|
(MSTI from NYC)
|I know it's not exactly what you asked but yes, I would be happy to see Shaughnessy's head explode. (Jay Jaffe)|
|2010-01-06 13:00:00 (link to chat)||I'd call this good news for Bert. I was worried he'd stagnate around 62%. do you have the % of the vote for Edgar, Raines and Barry? They don't have it on espn.com. Thanks.|
(collins from greenville nc)
|539 ballots, five blanks, Andre Dawson 420 (77.9%), Bert Blyleven 400 (74.2%), Roberto Alomar 397 (73.7%), Jack Morris 282 (52.3%), Barry Larkin 278 (51.6%), Lee Smith 255 (47.3%), Edgar Martinez 195 (36.2%), Tim Raines 164 (30.4%), Mark McGwire 128 (23.7%), Alan Trammell 121 (22.4%), Fred McGriff 116 (21.5%), Don Mattingly 87 (16.1%), Dave Parker 82 (15.2%), Dale Murphy 63 (11.7%), Harold Baines 33 (6.1%), Andres Galarraga 22 (4.1%), Robin Ventura 7 (1.3%), Ellis Burks 2 (0.4%), Eric Karros 2 (0.4%), Kevin Appier 1 (0.2%), Pat Hentgen 1 (0.2%), David Segui 1 (0.2%), Mike Jackson 0, Ray Lankford 0, Shane Reynolds 0, Todd Zeile 0.
Segui gets his vote. Baines remains on life support thanks to the persistence of a stubborn few. Karros receives more votes than he had All-Star appearances. (Jay Jaffe)
|2010-01-06 13:00:00 (link to chat)||With Larkin getting just over 50% on his first ballot, is he a lock to get in eventually? What's the over/under on how many years? Thanks.|
(KerryFam4 from Atlanta, GA)
|Aside from guys currently on the ballot, everybody who's gotten 50% of the vote from the writers has gone in eventually except for Gil Hodges. Which thus bodes well not only for Larkin but also Jack Morris, who gained about 8 percent this year - a big jump. Without thinking too hard about the coming attractions on the ballot, I'd guess Larkin is in within five or six years. (Jay Jaffe)|
|2009-06-03 15:00:00 (link to chat)||Will Jamie Moyer even get close to the hall of fame? I wouldn't think so but the idea has gotten some favorable attention since he hit 250 wins.|
(kevin from boston)
|I don't think so, not if a 250+ winner with additional postseason heroics like Jack Morris can't get above 50% of the vote (and he shouldn't, as you'll see if you read my JAWS articles). Pitcher wins ain't all that they're cracked up to be anyway, and the fact that Moyer has no Cys and just one All-Star appearance pretty much consigns him to the human interest section of the voting. (Jay Jaffe)|
|2008-02-28 14:00:00 (link to chat)||Christina, great work over the offseason, as always. My question is about roster construction, and specifically the hitter/pitcher divide. It seems like it was just yesterday that we were mocking the Rockies and/or Don Baylor for taking 12 pitchers, but at least it was mildly defensible on the grounds that they needed extra arms to throw in Coors Field. Now we're at a point where almost everyone is at a 13/12 divide. What the heck happened, and what do you think are the chances of some squad going back to 15/10 simply by employing 2 good long men in the pen at all times?|
(ElAngelo from New York, NY)
|Baylor's mistake was that he made that choice for a post-season roster. While I would like to see more teams invest the roster space in observing one of Earl Weaver's rules and put their young starters in long relief roles, and thereby save themselves multiple spots sunk on multiple situational playthings in the pen, you could also save roster space by effectively committing to a four-man rotation that exploits the fact that we're in a world that doesn't have doubleheaders and a schedule that features plenty of off-days to reduce the fifth slot to a sometime thing. That might mean shorter starts for the front four, and it might not, but I think we're at a point where the industry has probably overcorrected, costing us the next Jack Morris or Tom Seaver.
You could also expand your roster by not resorting to Eck-style closer usage patterns--make the money pitcher for the endgame something more than a sundae's cherry, and you'll get more quality innings. Condition them to be Eck-style closers, and you're investing a roster spot on a single-purpose single-inning reliever, forcing you to commit to 11 at the outset, and making 12 seems plausible.
Now, to be fair to major league managers, managing pitching staffs involves anticipating a lot of different scenarios, not all of them happy, and committing resources in the form of those roster spots. But it can also mean not giving lineups the same depth of consideration, because you know you'll have nine guys out there, and beyond someone who can play the corners, someone who can play the outfield, and someone who can catch, you figure you're covered. It's not the way I look at the problem of in-game tactics or in-season operations, but I was reading Earl Weaver's books at an impressionable age. (Christina Kahrl)
|2008-01-10 13:00:00 (link to chat)||Overrated marginal HOFers - Schilling.|
(NC from West Coast)
|Hardly. His regular-season work puts him in the gray area, admittedly at the low end. Then you have to consider the postseason, and to some extent, the narrative. Those things push him over the top. Postseason matters in a Hall of Fame discussion.
What the Jack Morris people don't get is that those of us who don't think he's qualified *do* consider Game 7 and his postseason record as part of his case. The problem is that even with those things, it's still not enough. His overall postseason record is good, just not fantastic.
I would also strongly argue that the people who don't think he's qualified give more credence to Morris' postseason work than Morris' supporters do to the mass quantities of evidence that his win totals were a function of durability and teammates, not special skills.
Anyway, Schilling will make the Hall, and deserve it. (Joe Sheehan)
|2008-01-10 13:00:00 (link to chat)||So being able to pitch to the score gets me no respect?|
(Jack_Morris from Candyland)
|I assume this is someone just asking me to run the link.
Jack Morris didn't have any ability to prevent runs based on the score of the game:
http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=1815 (Joe Sheehan)
|2008-01-08 14:00:00 (link to chat)||my prediction:
Rice misses by an extremely small margin.
Much, much bleating commences over the voters who submitted blanks to protest roids users, thus depriving the "deserving" pre-roids slugger.
(TomH from Lexington Park MD)
|The Goose is Loose! He gets 85.8 percent, and he's the only one who gets in on this ballot.
Rice falls just shy at 72.2 percent, setting him up for a 15th-year push.
Raines 24.3 percent. Oh is that ugly.
Player Total Votes Percentage Rich Gossage 466 85.8% Jim Rice 392 72.2% Andre Dawson 358 65.9% Bert Blyleven 336 61.9% Lee Smith 235 43.3% Jack Morris 233 42.9% Tommy John 158 29.1% Tim Raines 132 24.3% Mark McGwire 128 23.6% Alan Trammell 99 18.2% Dave Concepcion 88 16.2% Don Mattingly 86 15.8% Dave Parker 82 15.1% Dale Murphy 75 13.8% Harold Baines 28 5.2% Rod Beck 2 0.4% Travis Fryman 2 0.4% Robb Nen 2 0.4% Shawon Dunston 1 0.2% Chuck Finley 1 0.2% David Justice 1 0.2% Chuck Knoblauch 1 0.2% Todd Stottlemyre 1 0.2%
Jose Rijo 0 0% Brady Anderson 0 0% (Jay Jaffe)
No BP Roundtables have mentioned this guy.