TBOR Athlete of the Month - December, 2010 +2001 Athlete of the Year

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Tom Brady.

Runners-up: Cam Newton, LeBron James, Maya Moore

You can get to the previous 11 months here.

Nov - Tim Lincecum
Oct - Matt Cain
Sept - Troy Tulowitzki
Aug - Josh Hamilton
July - Diego Forlan
June - John Isner
May - Rajon Rondo
April - Phil Mickelson
March - Maya Moore
Feb- Drew Brees
Jan - Peyton Manning

And so that's it.  12 nominees for 2010 Athlete of the Year.  I will award that on Christmas Eve.

Back in 2001, my Athlete of the Year was Barry Bonds.  AP also chose Bonds

January - Ray Lewis (Josh Heupel, Kerry Collins, Jennifer Capriati)
February - Allen Iverson (Chris Webber, Kevin Garnett, Tim Duncan)
March - Shane Battier (Shane Moseley, Jason Williams, Jason Gardner)
April - Tiger Woods (Hideo Nomo, Barry Bonds, Hasim Rachman)
May - Barry Bonds (Shaquille O'Neal, Randy Johnson, Kobe Bryant)
June - Shaquille O'Neal (Jennifer Capriati, Patrick Roy, Karrie Webb)
July - Lance Armstrong (Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Goran Ivanisevic, Cal Ripken)
August - Sammy Sosa (Greg Maddux, Danny Almonte, Roger Clemens)
Spetember - Bernard Hopkins (Venus Williams, Barry Bonds, David Carr)
October - Curt Schilling (Rickey Henderson, Randy Johnson, Mike Brown)
November - Jeff Garcia (Marshall Faulk, Jerry Rice, Ken Dorsey)
December - Tim Duncan (Ahman Green, Brian Urlacher, Jason Williams)

The 200 Greatest Major League Baseball Players Ever 2011 Ed. #150-141

160-151 is here.

150. Jack Glasscock SS WARP+WAR=123.1
Translated BA/OBP/SLG .293/.350/.451
OPS+ 112
MVPQ (none) 1889 (15)

-The very first shortstop on the list; WAR (I use B-Ref) doesn't give positional value the importance I'd prefer, so shortstops, for example, are a little lower rated than is ideal; but our ability to analyze defense, particularly absent television games, is much less exact than our ability to analyze offense.  

149. Elmer Flick RF 123.1
OPS+ 149
MVPQ (none) Best season 1901 (15.6)

-An all time elite bat; I love me a 3/4/5 translated slashmark; Flick joins Shoeless Joe as the only guys on the list so far who post one (Olerud just missed, another reason why he was better than you think.)

148. Gabby Hartnett C 123.3
 OPS+ 126
MVPQ none, Best season 1935 (12.5)

147. Will Clark 1B 123.4
OPS+ 137
MVPQ 1989 19.7

-And the third 3/4/5 slashmark comes from Clark; my favorite ballplayer as a teenager.  Will was the Giants first baseman for 8 seasons; even in a relatively limited time, he's the 5th greatest San Francisco Giant ever, by WAR+WARP.

1986 - 5.1
1987 - 9.5 (untranslated slashline in the NLCS .360/.429/.560
1988 - 15.8
1989 - 19.7 (untranslated slashline in the NLCS .650/.682/.1200) 
1990 - 7.9
1991 - 12.5
1992 - 10.9
1993 - 4

 146. Jim Palmer RHP 123.5
ERA+ 126
MVPQ none, Best season 1975 (15.2) 

-Maybe a tick overrated in our collective sense of him; it took 20 years to get this total value - he just isn't the equivalent of the Seaver/Carlton class of pitchers from that era.  His fame adds to our thoughts, but Palmer's no higher than this.  

145. Pud Galvin RHP 123.9
ERA+ 108
MVPQ  1884 (25.4)

-Not Glavine; Galvin.  Okay, here's the thing - WAR overrates pre 20th century players, and where it specifically happens is that guys like Galvin break the formula in years like 1884, in which he threw...wait for it...636 innings (which actually was fewer than the year before).  That's just not the same game being played today.  So, subjectively, you'd take Galvin off this list.  

144. Willie Stargell LF/1B 124.1
OPS+ 147
MVPQ 1973 (16.1)

-Willie Stargell had a big ole' bat.  

143. Home Run Baker 3B 124.9
OPS+ 135
MVPQ  1912 (18.6), 1913 (18.3)

142. Billy Herman 2B 125.6
OPS+ 112
MVPQ none, Best season 1935 (15.2)

-His name was William Jennings Bryan Herman

141. Hal Newhouser LHP 125.7
ERA+ 130
MVPQ 1944 (16.8), 1945 (19.9), 1946 (18.7)

-3 consecutive MVPQ seasons get Newhouser here (Bunning would do the same thing 20 years later); as a positive, Newhouser's adjusted ERA is the second best of any pitcher on the list thusfar (and behind just Halladay, who still might lose points on the tail end of his career, and will finish higher on the list obviously than he currently sits); as a negative, he is pitching against a diminished field during the War.  

60 down.  140 to go.  See you in a week.   

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