Wednesday, February 08, 2006


SFC B's list of the 10 best baseball players ever. Non-pitcher category.

Babe Ruth                        224.7   17.0
Honus Wagner 185.6 14.9
Barry Bonds 211.1 15.1
Willie Mays 207.8 14.5
Ty Cobb 194.5 13.8
Ted Williams 170.2 14.9
Joe Morgan 156.8 13.8
Mike Schmidt 148.4 11.6
Cal Ripken Jr. 158.6 14.9
Rickey Henderson 164.9 12.2
The first column of numbers represents the player's Career WARP3. WARP3 represents the number of wins that a player was worth over a replacement player (WARP= Wins Above Replacement Player). WARP3 is adjusted for all-time and for schedule length. I owe all this information, as well as how much more I've appreciated the game of baseball for the past five years, to Baseball Prospectus. If you're a fan of baseball, and you don't read BP, you're missing out.

The second column is the peak WARP for the player's career. Their best season. Now, I must confess I changed the list a bit when I made it. I originally had Mickey Mantle on there, but I noticed that the list was pretty heavy on outfielders so I thought for an extra second and remembered that Baltimore had a pretty good shortstop before Miguel Tejada.

Now to demonstrate a point I'd made earlier in the evening to my those in my office. I apologize to everyone else who reads this because I'm using my soap box right now.

Pete Rose                         151.3   10.2
I'll admit. It was a bit closer than I thought it was going to be. But compared to Bonds, Pete Rose was worth 50 wins less over his career, than Bonds has been worth. And it's important to note that Rose's career was longer than Bonds' has been so far. The gap is going to widen. Even the pre-BALCO Bonds, back when he was with the Pirates in the early 90's, is worth 2-3 wins per year more than Rose was at his best. Bonds is a signifigantly better player in all aspects of the game.

As for the 'Roids vs. Gambling part of the debate we had, let me direct them to Sean Lahman.

6) Why is betting on baseball a bad thing? Guys who take drugs or beat their wives don't get such harsh punishment. Lots of them are in the Hall of Fame.

Gambling is the worst thing a ballplayer can do, because it undermines the integrity of the game. Since the goals of the gambler are different than the normal goals of a baseball team, fan's trust in the game is shaken.

The use of drugs or other offenses are sometimes punished by baseball. While these may be crimes against society, they are not necessarily crimes against baseball.

It's late, I'm tired, and Mrs. SFC B is waiting for me. Let me just finish by saying that I was right, and they were wrong. This has been a very me centric day for my posting. I apologize for that.


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