Tuesday, June 26, 2007

My Top 60 Starters, 41-50

50. Jack Powell (.508 NW%, 106 ARA, +14 WAA, +75 WAR)
49. Rube Waddell (.561, 125, +32, +74)
48. Dazzy Vance (.596, 125, +32, +74)
47. Don Drysdale (.535, 118, +29, +77)
46. Gus Wynn (.531, 106, +13, +77)
45. Luis Tiant (.559, 117, +29, +78)
44. Joe McGinnity (.603, 119, +29, +77)
43. Hal Newhouser (.565, 125, +35, +76)
42. Jim Bunning (.547, 115, +27, +79)
41. Billy Pierce (.534, 121, +32, +78)

POWELL: His career record was 245-256, but he pitched for bad (.462 Mate) teams. His neutralized record of 255-246 is good for +59 WCR, but he does much better in a run-based analysis, coming at +75. He has no peak to speak of, especially for a pitcher of his time, but has a lot of value against a low baseline over the course of almost 4400 innings.

WADDELL & VANCE: As you can see, these two are almost a perfect match, except Vance’s W-L record is more impressive and he was sane (and right-handed). They were both strikeout pitchers, but have wildly different career paths. Waddell was done by age 33 and dead by 36. Vance had cups of coffee at ages 24 and 27, but didn’t establish himself until age 31. In the end, the shooting star and the late bloomer had pretty much equal value.

DRYSDALE: I know that I will catch flak, if anyone cares, for putting Drysdale ahead of Koufax. But from a career comparison against a replacement baseline, it is tough to avoid, as Drysdale has twelve more WAR and is only four behind in WAA. There is absolutely no question that Koufax was the Dodgers’ ace, but four or five years don’t override the career. Neither lasted much past thirty, but Drysdale pitched 1000 more innings.

WYNN: The lowest-ranking 300 game winner, and perhaps sliding him past Drysdale was inappropriate, but certainly a fine pitcher.

NEWHOUSER: Some people take away credit because two of his best seasons came during the war. 1945 was his best, but actually 1946 was a little better then 1944. Anyway, the principle here is that a major league win is worth the same no matter what. Top five years of +49.8 WAR is a dead ringer for Koufax. In fact, he had a six year string from 1944-49 of 10.7, 12.8, 11, 7.5, 7.5, 7.8.

PIERCE: Pierce is the highest ranking pitcher on my list not in the Hall of Fame who is either 1) eligible or 2) not through to the Vets Committee yet. There are two eligible pitchers ahead of him who have not yet been inducted, but they are both still on the main ballot.

1 comment:

  1. No, as explained in the introduction to the list:



I reserve the right to reject any comment for any reason.