a jim jividen blog

Here's the thing. I'm watching one of these shows on the Cooking Channel featuring food trucks. There's a Scottish expat making fish and chips; in a thick brogue he somewhat wearily explains his irritation with Americans who habitually order a side of tartar sauce: "tartar sauce is basically gherkins." That's this blog. I claim no particular insight, no revelation. If you enjoy the flavor, great, but this blog is basically gherkins.

Friday, December 16, 2011

The 200 Greatest Major League Baseball Players of All Time, 2012 Ed. 1-10

The previous ten is here.

1.Babe Ruth RF/LHP Yankees 1914-35 
 MVPQ: 1917, 1932
 Elite: 1916, 1928, 1930
 Inner circle: 1919, 1920, 1921, 1923 (14 wins), 1924, 1926, 1927, 1931
 PA: 10,600
 IP: 1220 

2.Barry Bonds LF Giants/Pirates 1986-07
   OPS+ 181
   MVPQ: 1991, 1995, 1997, 2000
   Elite: 1990, 1998, 2003,
   Inner circle: 1992, 1993, 1996, 2001, 2002, 2004
  PA: 12,600

  3.Willie Mays CF Giants 1951-73
   OPS+ 155
   MVPQ: 1960, 1961, 1966
   Elite: 1955, 1957,
   Inner circle: 1954, 1958, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965

4.Walter Johnson RHP Senators 1907-27
  ERA+ 147
  Elite: 1916, 1918, 1919
  Inner circle: 1910, 1912, 1913, 1914, 1915
  IP: 5900

5. Ty Cobb CF Tigers 1905-28 
    MVPQ: 1912,
    Elite: 1909, 1915,
    Inner circle: 1910, 1911, 1917
    PA: 13,060

6.Roger Clemens RHP 1984-07 Red Sox/Yankees
  ERA+ 143
  MVPQ: 1986, 1992
  Elite: 1987
  Inner circle: 1990, 1997
  IP: 4900

7. Hank Aaron RF Braves 1954-76
    MVPQ= 1959, 1960, 1961, 1963, 1967
     PA: 13,940

8.Cy Young RHP 1890-11 Spiders/Red Sox
   MVPQ= 1892, 1893, 1895, 1902, 1904, 1908
   Elite: 1901,
   IP: 5500

9.Honus Wagner SS Pirates 1897-17
   OPS+ 150
   MVPQ:1901, 1903, 1904, 1909, 1912
   Elite: 1905, 1906, 1907,
   Inner circle: 1908
   PA: 11,750
10.Stan Musial LF/RF/1B 1941-63 Cardinals 
     MVPQ=1944, 1946, 1949
     Elite:1943, 1951
     Inner circle:1948
     PA: 12,700

And so it ends.  The top ten leaves catcher (Bench, Piazza on the first team; Dickey and Carter on the second) first base (Gehrig, Pujols on the first team; Brouthers and Connor on the second) and second base (Hornsby, Lajoie on the first team, Collins, Morgan on the second).

ARod is never going to catch Wagner; he solidly remains the best SS who ever lived; everyone else moves down; Vaughan and Ripken on the second team.   Third base stays the same - Schmidt and Mathews on the first team; Boggs and Chipper on the second.

Bonds and his 13 MVPQ seasons is solidly the best LF who ever lived. Williams is his backup; Musial and Henderson are on the second team. Mays and Cobb are the new center fielders, that bumps Mantle/Speaker to the second team (and DiMaggio off either squad which is madness)  Ruth and Aaron to the first team in right; Ott/Robinson now to the second team.

The arms in this section are Johnson/Clemens/Young in that order - and I think they're the 3 best pitchers who ever lived.

So, two active players on the all time 25 man roster, and Pujols has a chance to be the best first baseman who ever lived by the end of his career.  Piazza's bat makes him maybe a surprise result as the second best catcher of all time.  Four pitchers of recent vintage in the all time top 9: Clemens, Maddux, Pedro, Unit.

Gary Carter's the backup on the B squad, making him the best baseball player of all time I ever met; Chipper has now passed Brett to be the 4th best third baseman of all time.  Rivera's the active player on the B team, his limited use coupled with total dominance in that use makes him the most difficult rank.  Dropping Newhouser and going with only 8 pitchers in order to add DiMaggio would just make things too easy on all of us.

Team One
 C Bench
1B Gehrig
2B Hornsby 
SS Wagner
  3B Schmidt
LF  Bonds
CF   Mays
RF  Ruth
 P W Johnson
    Johnson (L)
Team 2

C Dickey


1B  Brouthers

  2B  Collins
SS Vaughan 
3B  Boggs
LF  Musial
CF  Mantle
RF Ott
   Hubbell (L)
   Newhouser (L)