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Willie Randolph

Posted by Steve Lombardi on March 20, 2011

I was totally "playing" around with Play Idex today - asking it to show me "Spanning Multiple Seasons or entire Careers, from 1920 to 2010, requiring SB>=100 and SB>5.0*HR, sorted by greatest WAR (Position Players)" and I got this leader board:

Source:

Rk Player WAR/pos SB HR From To Age G PA AB R H 2B 3B RBI BB IBB SO HBP SH SF GDP CS BA OBP SLG OPS Pos Tm
1 Ozzie Smith 64.6 580 28 1978 1996 23-41 2573 10778 9396 1257 2460 402 69 793 1072 79 589 33 214 63 167 148 .262 .337 .328 .666 *6 SDP-STL
2 Willie Randolph 60.5 271 54 1975 1992 20-37 2202 9462 8018 1239 2210 316 65 687 1243 37 675 38 99 64 219 94 .276 .373 .351 .724 *4/D5 PIT-NYY-LAD-TOT-MIL-NYM
3 Richie Ashburn 58.0 234 29 1948 1962 21-35 2189 9736 8365 1322 2574 317 109 586 1198 25 571 43 112 18 83 92 .308 .396 .382 .778 *8/794 PHI-CHC-NYM
4 Luis Aparicio 49.9 506 83 1956 1973 22-39 2599 11230 10230 1335 2677 394 92 791 736 22 742 27 161 76 184 136 .262 .311 .343 .653 *6 CHW-BAL-BOS
5 Brett Butler 46.5 558 54 1981 1997 24-40 2213 9545 8180 1359 2375 277 131 578 1129 23 907 38 147 51 62 257 .290 .377 .376 .753 *87/9D ATL-CLE-SFG-LAD-TOT
6 Bert Campaneris 45.3 649 79 1964 1983 22-41 2328 9625 8684 1181 2249 313 86 646 618 15 1142 64 199 60 106 199 .259 .311 .342 .653 *6/57483921D KCA-OAK-TEX-TOT-CAL-NYY
7 Sam Rice 42.2 285 30 1920 1934 30-44 2039 8733 7898 1328 2561 441 165 918 599 0 194 45 191 0 0 143 .324 .375 .433 .808 *98/7 WSH-CLE
8 Lou Brock 39.1 938 149 1961 1979 22-40 2616 11235 10332 1610 3023 486 141 900 761 124 1730 49 47 46 114 307 .293 .343 .410 .753 *798 CHC-TOT-STL
9 Willie Wilson 39.0 668 41 1976 1994 20-38 2154 8317 7731 1169 2207 281 147 585 425 27 1144 62 64 35 90 134 .285 .326 .376 .702 *87/9D KCR-OAK-CHC
10 Eddie Collins 37.6 180 22 1920 1930 33-43 1110 4648 3855 685 1334 200 55 520 592 0 99 21 180 0 0 92 .346 .436 .444 .879 *4/6 CHW-PHA
11 Maury Wills 33.4 586 20 1959 1972 26-39 1942 8304 7588 1067 2134 177 71 458 552 26 684 16 119 29 92 208 .281 .330 .331 .661 *65/4 LAD-PIT-TOT
12 Mark Belanger 32.5 167 20 1965 1982 21-38 2016 6602 5784 676 1316 175 33 389 576 22 839 42 155 45 83 75 .228 .300 .280 .580 *6/45 BAL-LAD
13 Lance Johnson 28.5 327 34 1987 2000 23-36 1447 5800 5379 767 1565 175 117 486 352 29 384 7 35 27 103 105 .291 .334 .386 .720 *8/79D STL-CHW-NYM-TOT-CHC-NYY
14 Max Carey 25.0 346 40 1920 1929 30-39 1244 5412 4667 818 1381 239 77 432 558 0 214 33 154 0 0 56 .296 .375 .406 .781 *89/7 PIT-TOT-BRO
15 Luis Castillo 24.5 370 28 1996 2010 20-34 1720 7471 6510 1001 1889 194 59 443 800 13 850 12 123 26 120 142 .290 .368 .351 .719 *4 FLA-MIN-TOT-NYM
16 Bill North 24.1 395 20 1971 1981 23-33 1169 4621 3900 640 1016 120 31 230 627 28 665 25 55 14 50 162 .261 .365 .323 .688 *8/9D7 CHC-OAK-TOT-SFG
17 Johnny Mostil 23.4 175 23 1921 1929 25-33 962 4061 3474 614 1045 207 80 372 414 0 330 70 103 0 0 104 .301 .386 .426 .813 *8/97564 CHW
18 Chone Figgins 22.4 322 32 2002 2010 24-32 1097 4777 4187 658 1201 169 55 376 486 5 727 9 59 36 64 111 .287 .359 .376 .736 548/769D ANA-LAA-SEA
19 Tom Herr 21.5 188 28 1979 1991 23-35 1514 6111 5349 676 1450 254 41 574 627 47 584 22 60 53 100 64 .271 .347 .350 .696 *4/65D8 STL-TOT-PHI
20 Charlie Jamieson 21.2 105 18 1920 1932 27-39 1457 6326 5534 939 1747 294 73 490 627 0 245 31 134 0 0 110 .316 .388 .405 .793 *7/8391 CLE
21 Dave Cash 20.5 120 21 1969 1980 21-32 1422 6057 5554 732 1571 243 56 426 424 28 309 18 30 31 124 74 .283 .334 .358 .692 *4/56 PIT-PHI-MON-SDP
22 Matty Alou 20.5 156 31 1960 1974 21-35 1667 6220 5789 780 1777 236 50 427 311 38 377 36 55 29 101 80 .307 .345 .381 .726 *8973/1 SFG-PIT-STL-TOT-SDP
23 Delino DeShields 19.9 463 80 1990 2002 21-33 1615 6652 5779 872 1548 244 74 561 754 31 1061 20 57 42 99 147 .268 .352 .377 .729 *47/D65839 MON-LAD-STL-BAL-TOT-CHC
24 Freddie Patek 19.3 385 41 1968 1981 23-36 1650 6246 5530 736 1340 216 55 490 523 33 787 31 119 43 92 131 .242 .309 .324 .633 *6/4597 PIT-KCR-CAL
25 Bip Roberts 18.8 264 30 1986 1998 22-34 1202 4631 4147 663 1220 203 31 352 396 19 548 30 27 31 59 95 .294 .358 .380 .737 475/86D9 SDP-CIN-KCR-TOT
26 Gary Pettis 18.2 354 21 1982 1992 24-34 1183 4237 3629 568 855 109 49 259 521 3 958 9 65 13 55 104 .236 .332 .310 .642 *8/97 CAL-DET-TEX-TOT
27 Sparky Adams 18.0 154 9 1922 1934 27-39 1424 6174 5557 844 1588 249 48 394 453 0 223 28 136 0 14 50 .286 .343 .353 .695 456/79 CHC-PIT-STL-TOT-CIN
28 Steve Sax 17.5 444 54 1981 1994 21-34 1769 7632 6940 913 1949 278 47 550 556 47 584 24 75 37 146 178 .281 .335 .358 .692 *4/7D59 LAD-NYY-CHW-OAK
29 Gene Richards 17.4 247 26 1977 1984 23-30 1026 3958 3549 502 1028 127 63 255 356 39 436 20 20 13 56 89 .290 .357 .383 .739 *78/39 SDP-SFG
30 Larry Bowa 17.2 318 15 1970 1985 24-39 2247 9103 8418 987 2191 262 99 525 474 45 569 17 151 43 121 105 .260 .300 .320 .620 *6/4 PHI-CHC-TOT
31 Johnny Temple 17.1 140 22 1952 1964 24-36 1420 6035 5218 720 1484 208 36 395 648 5 338 13 122 34 79 48 .284 .363 .351 .713 *4/5639 CIN-CLE-TOT-HOU
32 Eric Young 17.0 465 79 1992 2006 25-39 1730 6996 6119 996 1731 327 46 543 660 14 462 89 84 44 135 168 .283 .359 .390 .749 *47/8D695 LAD-COL-TOT-CHC-MIL-TEX-SDP
33 Rabbit Maranville 16.9 148 8 1920 1935 28-43 1757 7389 6643 859 1750 266 120 580 542 0 420 22 182 0 21 66 .263 .321 .343 .664 *64/5 BSN-PIT-CHC-BRO-STL
34 Mark McLemore 16.7 272 53 1986 2004 21-39 1832 7239 6192 943 1602 255 47 615 875 29 983 15 105 52 134 119 .259 .349 .341 .690 *4795/68D CAL-TOT-HOU-BAL-TEX-SEA-OAK
35 Ozzie Guillen 15.9 169 28 1985 2000 21-36 1993 7133 6686 773 1764 275 69 619 239 25 511 7 141 60 114 108 .264 .287 .338 .626 *6/5347 CHW-TOT-ATL-TBD
36 Bud Harrelson 15.7 127 7 1965 1980 21-36 1533 5516 4744 539 1120 136 45 267 633 31 653 22 94 23 53 60 .236 .327 .288 .616 *6/457 NYM-PHI-TEX
37 Bump Wills 15.1 196 36 1977 1982 24-29 831 3439 3030 472 807 128 24 302 310 20 441 17 53 29 53 65 .266 .335 .360 .695 *4/D TEX-CHC
38 Ron LeFlore 14.3 455 59 1974 1982 26-34 1099 4872 4458 731 1283 172 57 353 363 15 888 17 14 20 73 142 .288 .342 .392 .734 *87/D DET-MON-CHW
39 Dave Collins 14.1 395 32 1975 1990 22-37 1701 5507 4907 667 1335 187 52 373 467 16 660 38 64 31 59 139 .272 .338 .351 .689 7983/D CAL-SEA-CIN-NYY-TOR-OAK-DET-STL
40 Juan Pierre 13.9 527 14 2000 2010 22-32 1593 6798 6184 900 1842 217 82 434 385 8 384 88 125 16 77 173 .298 .347 .366 .713 *87/D COL-FLA-CHC-LAD-CHW
41 Julio Cruz 13.2 343 23 1977 1986 22-31 1156 4437 3859 557 916 113 27 279 478 3 508 14 56 30 64 78 .237 .321 .299 .620 *4/6D SEA-TOT-CHW
42 Bucky Harris 13.0 167 9 1920 1931 23-34 1255 5525 4708 722 1291 222 64 502 471 0 307 98 248 0 0 91 .274 .352 .354 .707 *4/695 WSH-DET
43 George Case 12.9 349 21 1937 1947 21-31 1226 5515 5016 785 1415 233 43 377 426 0 297 21 52 0 48 109 .282 .341 .358 .699 798 WSH-CLE
44 Harold Reynolds 12.4 250 21 1983 1994 22-33 1374 5398 4782 640 1233 230 53 353 480 11 417 27 76 33 68 138 .258 .327 .341 .668 *4/D7 SEA-BAL-CAL
45 Scott Podsednik 12.3 301 41 2001 2010 25-34 1016 4129 3707 544 1036 171 41 300 327 7 595 24 49 22 64 102 .279 .340 .381 .721 *78/9D SEA-MIL-CHW-COL-TOT
46 Jerry Remy 12.0 208 7 1975 1984 22-31 1154 4963 4455 605 1226 140 38 329 356 10 404 4 116 32 83 99 .275 .327 .328 .656 *4/D69 CAL-BOS
47 Otis Nixon 11.2 620 11 1983 1999 24-40 1709 5800 5115 878 1379 142 27 318 585 10 694 5 67 28 72 186 .270 .343 .314 .658 *87/9D6 NYY-CLE-MON-ATL-BOS-TEX-TOR-TOT-MIN
48 Quilvio Veras 11.0 183 32 1995 2001 24-30 767 3293 2780 469 750 129 15 239 427 4 462 38 29 19 44 83 .270 .372 .362 .734 *4/98 FLA-SDP-ATL
49 Dave Roberts 10.2 243 23 1999 2008 27-36 832 3090 2707 437 721 95 53 213 307 8 362 16 41 19 23 58 .266 .342 .366 .708 *87/9 CLE-LAD-TOT-SDP-SFG
50 Wally Backman 10.0 117 10 1980 1993 20-33 1102 3708 3245 482 893 138 19 240 371 9 480 5 68 19 55 52 .275 .349 .339 .687 *45/6 NYM-MIN-PIT-PHI-SEA
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 3/20/2011.

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And, seeing the two names at the top got me wondering - how come Ozzie Smith is in the Hall of Fame and Willie Randolph didn't even get a sniff from Cooperstown? Oh, well, at least Adam Darowski put Willow in there...

This entry was posted on Sunday, March 20th, 2011 at 6:27 pm and is filed under Season Finders. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

30 Responses to “Willie Randolph”

  1. Any list that has Randolph 2nd and Eddie Collins 10th is not to be used for making decisions about the Hall of Fame.

  2. Most of Collins' career is excluded, coming before 1920.

  3. Spartan Bill Says:

    Maybe the 13 Gold gloves have something to do with it?

  4. I agree with #3. Defense isn't on the chart.

    Plus, these "low-HR" charts come up from time to time. While they are fun because they look at certain types of players, there's no bonus points for providing value without home runs. An HR is still the most valuable event in baseball so any list which excludes people who hit them comes with a large caveat.

    Randolph's an underrated player though. I wouldn't pick him over Ozzie (different position so apples and oranges anyways) but he wouldn't be an embarrassing pick. I'd vote for Grich and Whitaker first though.

  5. I can't believe it! A stolen base list that doesn't include Rickey Henderson!

  6. @5 - good call. All those homers finally came back to haunt him... ;-)

  7. First name that came to mind: Vince Coleman. But there is no VC here. Turns out his WAR is 9.4 and it looks there was a cutoff at WAR = 10 for this list. Poor Vince.

  8. Phil Jacobson Says:

    Regarding what Depstein said, something doesn't seem right. Henderson should be on the list. As an example from 1980-1990 he had 165 HR, 903 SB and 82.1 WAR. Was there another variable used in generating this list?

  9. For his career Rickey had 295 HRs (*5 = 1475) and 1406 SBs. 14 fewer HRs and he would have made it.

  10. Phil Jacobson Says:

    I understand that for his career Henderson doesn't qualify for this list, but Eddie Collins is on the list for an 11-year span even though his career was 25 seasons and 2826 games.

  11. Among those who DID make this list, Lou Brock stands out on the power side - 80% more homers than the 2nd highest HR total (Aparicio), with Delino DeShields (seriously) at #3.

    @9. But, of course, Henderson blows away Brock (and everyone else) with almost double Brock's homer total and 50% more stolen bases.

    In addition to Henderson and Brock, Cobb, Raines, Morgan, Lofton, Lopes, Cedeno, Bonds and Molitor are the 500+ SB / 100+ HR club.

  12. @10 and Eddie Collins.

    Whether you count his entire career or just his time from 1920 onwards, Eddie easily qualifies for this list. For his career, his SB / HR ratio is a whopping 15.8 .

    I wonder, though, whether or not Eddie would have been better served in running less. For the seasons for which there are CS data, Eddie's steal success rate is only 67.3%. In a low-run environment, are you better off preserving baserunners at all costs because runs and dear? Or, do you try to get into scoring position at all costs, because runs are dear?

  13. Why Ozzie in HOF and not Randolph? Good question.

    Eyeballing their offensive numbers, lots of similarities and Randolph does show up at #9 on Ozzie's similarity score list.

    On HOF tests, for Black ink/Gray ink/HOF standards, very similar again with Ozzie at 2/51/35 and Willie at 2/39/34. But, HOF Monitor shows a clear preference for Ozzie at 142 to 92.

    If you go by HOF standards, neither should be in the Hall. But, how do you keep out Ozzie who was absolutely peerless in making highlight plays. Clearly, style matters and Ozzie had it, while Willie was merely steady and reliable.

  14. wWAR ranks Randolph 13th all time among second basemen (right behind Lou Whitaker and Joe Gordon). Gordon is actually a nice example of how wWAR rewards peak value. By standard WAR, Randolph has a 5.6 WAR lead on Gordon. But after the peak is factored, Gordon's wWAR is ahead of Randolph's by 7.0, a full 12.6 win swing.

    wWAR also has Randolph ahead of Hall of Famers Billy Herman, Bid McPhee, Tony Lazzeri, Johnny Evers, Bobby Doerr, Nellie Fox, Red Schoendienst, and Bill Mazeroski.

    None of those really strikes me as a revelation.

  15. The REASON (which is not to say it should be this way)Smith is in and Randolph isn't was because Ozzie was seen as the greatest defensive shortstop of all time. Willie Randolph was seen as a good defensive shortstop whose main offensive attribute, the ability to get on base at a excellent rate, we very undervalued in his era.

  16. Phil Jacobson Says:

    If you use Collins' entire career instead of just 1920-1930, he dominates this list with 126.7 WAR (47 HR, 741 SB.)

  17. Phil Jacobson Says:

    Ah, I see it now. Collins (and several others) only has a portion of his career listed due to the 1920 cutoff. For everyone else, it covers their entire career. Sorry for sounding like a noob.

  18. Juan sin Miedo Says:

    To begin with i just want to say that Willie and Ozzie are very comparable but are very differenct also. The one big difference is that Willie was a Second Baseman and Ozzie was a Short Stop. Now their similarities are numerous Willie played 18 seasons and Ozzie played 19, They Both averaged about 125 Hits per season, 2 HRs per year, 40 RBI's per year and career BA near the .270 range. Now their fielding is different but they played different positions with Ozzie edging Willie 679 Chances per year compared to Willies 635 chances and Assists 440 per year as compared to 352 per season for Willie. Their errors per season were almost identical with Willie at 13 and Ozzie at 14. I feel it is the Gold Gloves and All Star appearences that seperate these two (13 for Ozzie, None for Willie) this makes Ozzie much more visable and therfore elected to the Hall of Fame.

  19. Lawrence Azrin Says:

    @12/ EDDIE COLLINS - a 67.3 Stolen Base % is actually very good for the dead-ball era. As the offensive level goes down and runs become more valuable, so does the break-even rate for SB%. If you consider that there were probably more errors and muffs on stolen base attempts (as there were many more errors overall, 90 - 100 years ago) , the "break-even" point was probably a little bit above 50%.

    The caveat here is that we have only scattered info on Eddie Collin's SB% for his career, and only four of twelve years in the dead-ball era, so his SB% could be quite a bit less than 67.3%.

    @13/ Willie Randolph for the HOF?
    Well I think one thing Ozzie had going for him is that he claimed the "Greatest Defensive Shortstop Ever" un-official designation relatively early in his career (and then became a decent offensive player), while Randolph was never considered in that rarefied level defensively, plus Bill Mazeroski had the "Greatest Defensive Second Baseman Ever" title pretty much sewn up.

    Also, Ozzie was considered the biggest star (or close to it) in St Louis for most of his career there, whereas Randolph was overshadowed by bigger names his entire time with the Yankees (Munson/ Guidry/ R. Jackson/ Winfield/ Mattingly/ Henderson). Ozzie was seen as an essential part of the Cardinals, whereas Randolph was seen as very good but "complimentary" type of player.

  20. Juan sin Miedo Says:

    I noticed Omar Visquel is not on this list but i wanted to compare his stats with those of Ozzie and Willie. Even though he has played 22 seasons as compared to Ozzies 19 and Willie 18 his Per Season Numbers are very similiar except for Errors and Chances. Both Ozzie and Willie averaged around 13 errors per season and Omar averages just over 8 per season, But, Omar chances are a lot lower as compared to total chances by both Ozzie and Willie in lesser seasons ?? Omar also has a mantle full of Gold Glove award, will this be his ticket to cooperstown or will his lack of chances affect his chances ?? Just saying, I feel Omar has a good shot to be enshrined in Cooperstown one day, what do you say on this?

  21. Vizquel (400 SB; 80 HR). I guess he would be there if it SB greather than OR EQUAL TO 5*HR.

  22. Downpuppy Says:

    Kenny Lofton (622/130<5) has 65.3WAR

    I find it hard to picture most of the IBBs on this chart..

  23. Re #22, I imagine a lot of them are like Ozzie- 41 of 79 came in the #8 hole, presumably in front of a pitcher in the NL.

  24. @19 and Eddie Collins.

    "If you consider that there were probably more errors and muffs on stolen base attempts (as there were many more errors overall, 90 - 100 years ago) , the "break-even" point was probably a little bit above 50%."

    Lawrence, maybe I'm not following your reasoning properly, but to me more errors and muffs on stolen base attempts means more stolen bases and a higher success rate. In other words, the steal rate on plays with errors/muffs is effectively 100%, so since there were more errors/muffs than today, the old-time steal rate is actually inflated relative to today.

    So, my thinking is a 67.3% steal rate for 90-100 years ago is more like a 50%-60% rate today, which no manager would countenance for long in today's game for a guy any siginificant number of steal attempts - such a guy would be getting the stop sign most of the time.

    In a low-run environment, does it really make sense to risk losing a baserunner with only a 2/3 chance of succeeding. Certainly the incremental improvement in run probability that that one base obtains should be higher in a low-run environment than in a high-run environment, but is the incremental gain enough to justify a 1/3 chance of reducing that run probability to zero.

    I don't know what the run probabilities for the different base/out scenarios were in Collins day. But, if (for example), if the numbers were something like 30% scoring probabilty with runner on 1st and 0 outs, and 50% if runner on 2nd, then attempting to steal with a 2/3 success rate would increase your chances of scoring by 10% or so (33.3% versus 30%). But, if the probabilities were lower (say, 40% to 20% for being at 2nd versus being at 1st), then clearly there would be more incremental value in attempting to steal.

    BTW, I'm presuming the RE24 and related stats are normalized in some way to correct for differences in eras. Does anyone know?

  25. Lawrence Azrin Says:

    @24/ Doug - when the offensive levels go down, one-run strategies such as base stealing and sacrifice bunting go up. With fewer runs per game, each individual run is more valuable, which makes it worth the risk trying to steal (or at least the manager thinks so...). In higher offensive periods, there are more baserunners and extra-base hits - in short, there are more oppurtunities overall to score, so there is less need to attempt stolen bases.

    "...In a low-run environment, does it really make sense to risk losing a baserunner with only a 2/3 chance of succeeding..."

    Yes, and this situation was especially magnified in the dead-ball era, where there were hardly any home runs, and fewer walks and doubles (though more triples). I am not argueing what the optimum strategy _should_ be occording to our current analysis, but what the base-stealing strategy actually has been over baseball history.

  26. @24/ Doug; When there are errors then a success by the batter/base runner goes into the books as a failure. If the batter reaches on an error he gets an AB but no hit, so it lowers his batting average and OBA. Similarily for stolen bases. If, in the judgement of the official scorer, he "should" have been out but for the error, he gets a CS not a SB.

    Suppose there are now 2% errors on SBA that change out to safe. Then we are changing an official SB% from 70% to 72%. Back in Collins' day there may have been 6% errors of that type. If so then 67% in the books would be 73% in actuality, and better than 70% in the books today. (All numbers made up for this exercise.)

  27. @26.

    Kds: yes, I grant you that it is the scorer's discretion but, from my observation in today's game (and for the past 30 years or more), it is nearly always scored as a SB. Even when the throw is right there and the fielder just misses the catch, it seems that if the baserunner is even remotely in the vicinity of the bag when the throw comes in, he will get credit for the SB. Almost the only errors that are ever actually charged are for allowing the runner to advance on to third (or home). A runner would seemingly have to stumble and fall half-way to second not to be credited with a SB on a wild throw into center (for example).

    However, that's today, and official scoring may well have been different back in Collins day. So, yes, my suggestion that Collins success rate may be inflated because of more errors in his time was based on how steal plays are usually scored today.

    Certainly, with a lot more errors to deal with in the old days, it's not inconceivable that different protocols may be evolved on how to interpret and score certain types of plays. And, perhaps, a fielder failing to snag a good throw and apply the tag may have been scored as a CS more often then than it is now. Perhaps because it happened more often and perhaps because runners in heavy wool uniforms and low-tech shoes were, on a whole, probably slower than today and thus more likely to be thrown out by sizable margins. But, I suppose we'll never really know for sure.

  28. @16
    Re: Collins and pre-1920.

    I just noticed that Collins wouldn't be first going back pre-1920. It would be Ty Cobb. Cobb doesn't make the list above because his SB/HR ratio is too low after 1920. His stolen bases were way down in the 1920s and he hit home runs (when he wanted to) :-).

    For his full career though, this SB/HR ratio (897/117) is well over five and he had a whopping 159.4 WAR.

    Though it could be that the 1920 cutoff was not because that's where the dailies get cutoff (these are full year stats we're looking at anyways). This is probably a "live-ball" chart. Its likely that Cobb's eight SLG titles would have translated to more HR's in livelier offensive times.

  29. TapDancingTeddy Says:

    I've always been a fan of Randolph, and so, I'm glad to see him near the top of any list where the quality of his play is recognized.

    As for Mark Belanger, I'm probably the only person I know who thinks he was as good as Ozzie Smith. Nice to see his glove got him close to the top 10.

  30. John Autin Says:

    Teddy @29 -- If you're comparing Belanger and Ozzie on defense only, then there's certainly a strong case in your favor. Over their entire careers, Belanger had almost as much defensive WAR as Ozzie (20.9 to 21.6), but he did it in about 40% fewer defensive innings. Belanger had 6 seasons of at least 2 dWAR; Ozzie had only 1 such year.

    But when it comes to offense ... well, you know.