Fighting irrationality with irrationality since 2006.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Bob hates Barry

This is bordering on too easy, but since we are just getting started, it is good to take a few practice swings.

Check out Mr. Matthews' mission statement in today's paper:

”One of the best things about Bonds being on the verge of his 715th career home run is that it provides us with a timely opportunity to consider the merits of three candidates for "All-Time Greatest Major League Baseball Player"— Bonds, Ruth and Mays.”

Translated: I have a half-page column to fill five days a week and will take any flimsy excuse to jump on the Hate Barry Bonds Bandwagon with a bunch of speculation unbiased by “facts.”

He then tosses Bonds under the bus without considering any of those merits because he was on the juice, unlike Mays whose “biggest selling point” is ”his all-around brilliance and love of the game.”

Ah yes, the old-standby of the Joe Morgan types: back in my day they played for the love of the game unlike the overpaid whiners that are around now, hell they would have played for free, etc. I will ignore his ironclad bastion of rhetoric and move on.

”[Ruth] was headed to a Hall of Fame career on the mound... Ruth...outdueled Walter Johnson...that wasn't a fluke perfomance.”

Career ERA+ Overall Rank

Babe Ruth 122 (80)

Jimmy Key 122 (80)

Walter Johnson 146 (3)

”Ruth is my pick for all-time best baseball player, but anyone who favors Mays would get no argument.”

Unless they talk to someone who actually knows something about baseball.

”Mays was a career .302 hitter and played much of his career in an era favoring pitchers.”

Career OPS+ 156

Barry Bonds: 184

My favorite line of the column: ”[Mays] stole 338 bases and was caught only 103 times at a time when steals were scarce.”

Steals were scarce? Did they move the bases further apart or replace the base paths with the ball crawl from Chuck-E-Cheese? Even so, what the hell does that have to do with anything? By the way, Mr . Bonds had 506 SBs and 141 CSs, for a 78% rate, bettering Mr. Mays' 76% rate.

The end of the section is Mr. Matthews all time team, which is not backed up by any statistics or commentary, and really doesn't have to do with the Bonds/Mays/Ruth argument.


Blogger FireCrotchester said...

Steals were scarce. Brilliant.

You don't see many players able to play defense walking on their hands, but that doesn't make it worth anything.

Damn, I can't find an article I read recently that showed Barry's recent seasons were BY FAR the best since the 50's (when PBP data is available) and is by far the best player in terms of career value since that time. It was something like 120 wins above average versus 80 wins above average for second place.

How many years until Albert Pujols deserves a spot in the Best Player Ever discussion?

9:37 AM

Blogger Brian said...

How'd I do? Obviously, I am pretty snarky in general, but I haven't tried it in print (or about baseball) before.

9:31 PM

Blogger FireCrotchester said...

Dude, you're a natural.

9:42 PM


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