All Forums > SimLeague Baseball > SimLeague Baseball > Most Underrated Players of All Time
7/8/2013 12:04 AM
Posted by zubinsum on 7/3/2013 2:29:00 PM (view original):
St Louis Cardinals All-time under-rated/over-rated team

C) Darrell Porter/ Todd Zeille
1B) Kieth Hernandez/ Jim Bottomley
2B) Miller Huggins/ 
3B) Whitey Kurowski/ Pepper Martin
SS) Marty Marion/ Edgar Renteria
LF) Tip O'Neill/ Lou Brock
CF) 
RF) 
tip o'neil being on a list is pretty impressive...
7/8/2013 12:32 AM
Posted by besterateam on 7/8/2013 12:04:00 AM (view original):
Posted by zubinsum on 7/3/2013 2:29:00 PM (view original):
St Louis Cardinals All-time under-rated/over-rated team

C) Darrell Porter/ Todd Zeille
1B) Kieth Hernandez/ Jim Bottomley
2B) Miller Huggins/ 
3B) Whitey Kurowski/ Pepper Martin
SS) Marty Marion/ Edgar Renteria
LF) Tip O'Neill/ Lou Brock
CF) 
RF) 
tip o'neil being on a list is pretty impressive...
How so?
7/8/2013 12:47 AM
Posted by italyprof on 7/7/2013 7:36:00 PM (view original):
1) I agree joshkvt

2) the juice Bonds took is underrated, since as bottomlee points out his juice out-juiced McGwire, Sosa's and the rest of the juicers' juice. 

3) the Incredible Hulk is under-rated. Did you see that scene in the Avengers where he stops that big flying snake ship all by himself? 

4) Bonds really was very great without the steroids and didn't need them. 

5) His being African American is a part of why he gets more flak than others for having taken steroids, though part of it is that McGwire, Sosa and some others were mostly or entirely done with their careers when the public started to pay attention and when it became undeniable. If A-Rod had hit 80 homers on steroids after Bonds retired, he would be the player most identified with the scandal, and indeed, being more recent and even making a "comeback" now (sigh) he is increasingly the "face" of steroids. 



I think that most of the reason Bonds got the flak that he did(besides being an a1 ***** in the media) is that he broke Aaron's record.  If he hits 754, I don't think he gets the intense hate he got.  Maybe there was some racial bias in the media, but I don't think that was the main reason.  Numbers in baseball are hallowed.
7/8/2013 1:38 AM
Who is Griffey comparable to historically? Maybe Mantle? If either had full careers with good health, either could have been in the running for G.O.A.T. Seven straight (healthy) seasons hitting over .300 in the Kingdome with power, speed and defense is impressive.
I don't think this is a good comparison at all.  Mantle knew how to walk when it wasn't all that valued.  Griffey couldn't figure out how to draw walks commensurate with his talent in an era when the value of the walk was beginning to be appreciated.  I'm not saying Griffey wasn't still a great offensive player, but I'd take Mantle head and shoulders above him any day.  Griffey's walk rate wasn't even bad - it was above average - but it could have been better.  I think he compares better with a young Reggie Jackson.
7/8/2013 1:58 AM
Posted by The Taint on 7/8/2013 12:47:00 AM (view original):
Posted by italyprof on 7/7/2013 7:36:00 PM (view original):
1) I agree joshkvt

2) the juice Bonds took is underrated, since as bottomlee points out his juice out-juiced McGwire, Sosa's and the rest of the juicers' juice. 

3) the Incredible Hulk is under-rated. Did you see that scene in the Avengers where he stops that big flying snake ship all by himself? 

4) Bonds really was very great without the steroids and didn't need them. 

5) His being African American is a part of why he gets more flak than others for having taken steroids, though part of it is that McGwire, Sosa and some others were mostly or entirely done with their careers when the public started to pay attention and when it became undeniable. If A-Rod had hit 80 homers on steroids after Bonds retired, he would be the player most identified with the scandal, and indeed, being more recent and even making a "comeback" now (sigh) he is increasingly the "face" of steroids. 



I think that most of the reason Bonds got the flak that he did(besides being an a1 ***** in the media) is that he broke Aaron's record.  If he hits 754, I don't think he gets the intense hate he got.  Maybe there was some racial bias in the media, but I don't think that was the main reason.  Numbers in baseball are hallowed.
2) I agree.

4) I disagree, to an extent.  Without the late-career steroids, Bonds is still a HoFer, but I doubt he cracks that very elite Ruth-Williams-Cobb-Mays-Musial-Speaker-Aaron OF septet.   Bonds had 59 career WAR after his age 34 (1999) season.  If he didn't juice a normal career path would get him ~13 more WAR to total ~116 for his career.  He is still an inner-circle HoF but he is more along the lines of Mickey Mantle or Frank Robinson than Aaron or Mays.

5) I disagree.  I think he got so much attention for being (reportedly*) such an a$$ and being such an obvious cheat (i.e. PED user).  I don't think there was as much attention paid to him for breaking Aaron's record as there otherwise would be precisely because he was an a$$ and obvious cheat.  Basically, by 2006, if not earlier, it was a foregone conclusion he'd break the record and people didn't really want to celebrate it.

If, however, he had broken records ~6-8 years earlier when no one cared about steroids, I think he'd be viewed as a hero, much the way McGwire, Sosa or even Pete Rose was (the latter for break Cobb's hits record in the 1980's.) 



*I never spoke to Bonds myself, but I have known a few fans that met him and everyone said he was a nice guy.  However, everything I have ever read or heard (only one guy with close to direct contact) indicate that on a professional level, the guy was a complete a$$. 

7/8/2013 6:14 PM
4) I think I agree with your disagreement. That is, I think  you make a convincing case, that sounds about right. I yield to the senator from the great state of zubin on this point. 

5) you have a point, I think it is a lot of things combined. Certainly McGwire was very likeable during his homer quest. I know Sosa was very popular, maybe more popular, during the same 1998 season, but I never liked his showing up pitchers went  he hit homers, Mantle never did that, he ran around the bases with his head down. But so many things have changed about American culture in the interim...

You may be right about Bonds breaking records sooner leading to him being more beloved. Maybe. Willie Mays/Mr. Personality he was not. That is for sure. 

I may not have a good sense of these things also: my boyhood hero was Muhammad Ali. I loved him for many things, including what I just criticized  Sosa for, his showiness, for one thing. But mostly because my dad and all his middle aged conservative friends and all my middle aged conservative teachers hated him (I cleaned up when he beat George Foreman, and loved collecting every nickle of my winnings at age 14). 

But if you had told me Ali would have become virtually the most popular person in the world, a kind of global diplomat etc. back then, I never would have believed it. 
7/9/2013 5:26 AM
Ali was a hero of mine also despite the main stream media's bias against his views.  On thing he was from my home state, plus he could back up what he said.  I loved the way he played the media!  IMHO one of the greatest athletes of all time while in his prime.  The quickness and speed, plus the ability to take a solid punch (when they were lucky enough to land) have been unparalleled since in the heavyweight division.
7/10/2013 4:21 AM
I would add Moises Alou and Gary Sheffield to the list of under-rated players. Both very hard to strike out by contemporary standards and tough line drive hitters with power. Like better versions of Lou Piniella, or like only slightly lesser versions of Roberto Clemente but with more bat discipline. 
7/10/2013 5:57 PM
I think trying to rank HOF outfielders by WAR is a huge mistake since it overvalues longevity...  I would far rather have Mantle than Aaron, but Aaron makes your "elite septet" and Mantle does not...

FWIW, most people suspect Bonds started using sometime around 2000 or 2001.  So take a look at the decade before that.  From 1990-1999 Bonds had a cumulative OPS+ of 179 and stole 343 bases at a 78.5% success rate.  The BEST 10-season span of Mays' career (1956-1965) features a 165 OPS+ and 233 steals at a 76.4% success rate.  It just happens to work out such that those were the same age seasons, beginning at age 25.  Despite the fact that Mays had done a little more prior to his age 25 season, it's hard to argue that through age 34 Bonds had achieved significantly more, offensively, than Mays.  Younger Bonds was also a very good defender in his own right, albeit not Mays with the glove.  Even so, with so many people wanting to put Mays right below Ruth, Cobb, and Williams in the all-time list of greatest outfielders, I'd have a hard time putting the guy who was outperforming him statistically before EXPLODING statistically below not only Mays but also Musial and Aaron.  Speaker is a little tougher to compare.  But I personally put Bonds behind only the top 3, and only by a hair.
7/10/2013 6:08 PM
Put a different way, you're trying to judge Bonds on what you call a "normal" career arc.  But we know that the greatest hitters in history, typically guys with power and plate discipline, don't follow that "normal" arc because they don't have a "normal" talent set.  I'm not sure why WAR doesn't love Bonds.  For one thing, he didn't get the PAs of some of the other elite outfielders.  He played a few less games, but also played on low-OBP teams that just didn't get him to the plate as many times per game as other elite outfielders.  That's outside of his control, and if you look beyond WAR into the composite stats it's hard to punish him for it.  By his age 34 season, the cutoff we've both set where we're fairly certain he wasn't using, he'd led the league in OBP 4 times and OPS 5 times while playing exclusively in pitchers' parks.  In his entire career Mays led his league in OBP twice and OPS 5 times.  Aaron never led his league in OBP and only led in OPS three times.  Ever.
7/10/2013 6:09 PM
In summary, I think it's a ridiculous argument to put two guys with much lesser peaks into the top tier because they aged well, then assume the guy who actually exploded in his older years would have otherwise aged poorly and belongs below them.
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7/10/2013 9:38 PM
Posted by boogerlips on 7/10/2013 8:29:00 PM (view original):
Baseball was more fun with Bonds in it. Loved wAtching him bat. Best plate discipline I've ever seen by a wide wide margin. If it was an inch outside, the bat stayed put and he just laughs at the pitcher; an inch inside and it got crushed somewhere.
This
7/11/2013 2:50 AM

Quote post by dahsdebater on 7/10/2013 5:57:00 PM:

 I think trying to rank outfielders by WAR is a huge mistake since it overvalues longevity...  I would far rather have Mantle than Aaron, but Aaron makes your "elite septet" and Mantle does not...

I get your point but I 100% disagree in the instant case.  WAR only really overvalues longevity in cases where guys had years where they were just over replacement level or close to average.  In the case of really elite level talent like Aaron, Mays, Mantle, Musial, Speaker, Bonds, Robinson, Cobb, that really isn't the case all these guys performed well over average almost through their whole careers.  Ponanski has a brilliant blog post on the subject.  If you really wanted to correct WAR for replacement level, I think a decent shortcut would be to subtract the number of playing years from a player's total WAR.


 

7/11/2013 2:51 AM

Quote by Boogerlips on 7/10/2013 8:29 PM  

Baseball was more fun with Bonds in it. Loved watching him bat. Best plate discipline I've ever seen by a wide wide margin. If it was an inch outside, the bat stayed put and he just laughs at the pitcher; an inch inside and it got crushed somewhere.



I agree about the best plate discipline I have ever seen.  However that was after he was a 'roided up monster.  Earlier in his career his discipline was good, but not awesome.  And for the record, I don't think baseball was more fun with more steroids and more home runs.  In fact, I have no doubt that the game was more boring.

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