Comments on: Teenage Big Leaguers With 100+ Games In A Season This and that about baseball stats. Tue, 16 Jul 2013 17:01:55 +0000 hourly 1 By: Top 10 MLB Seasons For Teenagers – Where Would Harper Rank? | Ultimate Team Sports News Wed, 23 Feb 2011 15:11:42 +0000 [...] is a very good chance he could see some significant time in the majors next year at the age of 19. According to Baseball Reference, only 17 position players have ever played 100 or more games in a season as a teenager (Yount and [...]

By: depstein Sat, 19 Feb 2011 06:36:10 +0000 @20 thanks for the compliment. This is based on cumulative performance as a teenager.

By: John Autin Sat, 19 Feb 2011 06:21:32 +0000 One of the most intriguing teenagers on this list is Johnny Lush, a teammate of young Sherry Magee on the 1904 Phillies.

At age 18, Lush played 63 games at 1B, 33 in the OF and 7 as a pitcher. He hit about the same as Magee: 118 OPS+ for Lush, 121 for Magee.

In 1905, Lush held out for more money and wound up spending most of the year in the minors. He played just 6 games for the Phils, two of them mound starts; he won both games, allowing 3 ER in 17 IP.

In 1906, Lush was in the Philly rotation all year, and also played 24 games in the field. He went 18-15 on the bump (including a no-hitter), with a 2.54 ERA, 111 ERA+, while batting .264 in 226 PAs (20 points above the league BA).

In June of 1907, Lush was traded to the Cardinals for Buster Brown, who would finish his career with a .331 W% (51-103), the worst mark of any pitcher with at least 150 decisions. Lush pitched well for the Cards in 1907-08, but the team was the doormat of the NL, losing over 100 games each year; in 1908 Lush had a 2.12 ERA (111 ERA+) but went just 11-18. (Staff ace Bugs Raymond went 15-25, 2.03.)

After 3-1/2 years, Lush had had enough of losing with the Cardinals, who never got above 7th place. Though he was just 24 and had gone 14-13 in the previous year, he signed to pitch in the American Association, where he would spend the last 6 years of his pro career.

P.S. Besides Sherry Magee, the 1904 Phils outfield featured two other notable dead-ball batting stars:

-- Roy Thomas, who led the NL in walks 5 straight years (1900-04) and also in '06, with over 100 walks each time. Thomas had an OBP of at least .416 for 7 straight seasons (1899-05), with a combined .435 OBP (and .310 BA). Thomas also had as little power as any player of the day, averaging 8 doubles, 4 triples and 1 HR in those 7 years. His .413 career OBP is 28th all-time.

-- John Titus didn't reach the majors until age 27, but for the next 11 years he was a consistently strong hitter, with an OPS+ of at least 119 in 10 of 11 years and a career mark of 127. In his 10th year, the Phils traded him to the Braves, and he was still going strong at age 37 (137 OPS+) when, according to the B-R Bullpen, "he suffered a broken leg in mid-1913," and then was sold to KC in the American Association. While Titus was hitting .343 in the minors, the 1914 Braves were pulling off their "miracle" championship. The next year, the Phillies won their only pennant before 1950. (Magee's luck was even worse than that of Titus; he played for the Phils through 1914, and was traded to the Braves in 1915, just missing the only pennant for each team in a 50-year stretch.

By: John Autin Sat, 19 Feb 2011 05:22:58 +0000 There's never been a good teenage 2B in all of major-league history, back to 1871.

-- Only 3 teenagers ever got as many as 200 PAs in a season while playing at least half their games at 2B. All 3 had negative WAR: Bill Mazeroski (-0.1, 1956), Sibby Sisti (-0.5, 1939) and Lew Malone (-1.1, 1915).

-- Only 3 teenagers played as many as 50 total games at 2B in their teens: Sisti, Maz, and Clete Boyer. None of those 3 batted over .243, nor reached .300 in either OBP or SLG in their combined teenage years.

-- The highest WAR season by a teenage 2B in modern history was 0.3 by Joe Cronin in 1926 (27 games at 2B).

BW, Freddie Lindstrom played just 24 games at 2B in his teens; he played almost exclusively 3B at age 19, when he logged 104 games for the 1925 Giants.

By: John Autin Sat, 19 Feb 2011 04:56:51 +0000 @19, Depstein -- That's a fun list there; thanks.

Did you based it on cumulative performance as a teenager, or best single season?

If it's single season, I'd put Griffey in the starting 9. He's one of only 3 teenage outfielders with a season WAR over 2 (Ott 3.5, Griffey 2.8, Cobb 2.6).

And Edgar Renteria had the highest season WAR of any teenage infielder, 3.0.

And since you've got a DH, I'd put Tony Conigliaro (age 19: 24 HRs, 137 OPS+ in 111 games) in place of Cedeno.

But it's your list, of course.

By: depstein Sat, 19 Feb 2011 00:05:49 +0000 I have a 25 man roster I compiled of the best teenage players in MLB history:

Starting Lineup:
1. DH Cesar Cedeno, R
2. 3B Buddy Lewis, L
3. CF Ty Cobb, R
4. LF Mel Ott, L
5. RF Al Kaline, R
6. 1B Phil Cavarretta, L
7. 2B Freddie Lindstrom, R
8. C Del Crandall, R
9. SS Robin Yount, R

C/1B Jimmie Foxx, R
3B/SS Travis Jackson, R
SS Stuffy McInnis, R
OF Ken Griffey Jr., L
OF Mickey Mantle, S
OF Claudell Washington, L

RHP Dwight Gooden
RHP Bob Feller
RHP Wally Bunker
RHP Gary Nolan
RHP Joe Wood

LHP Bob Miller
LHP Don Gullett
RHP Art Houtteman
LHP Terry Forster
RHP Rick Wise

I actually have over 100 rosters like this, but this one fits the thread. Obviously it's only based on how they did as a teenager which is why Foxx is a backup catcher.

By: Teenage Big Leaguers With 100+ Games In A Season » Baseball ... Fri, 18 Feb 2011 23:59:04 +0000 Teenage Big Leaguers With 100+ Games In A Season » Baseball ......

[...]He played 83 games at age 19, with 70 of them being at pitcher! He threw 587 innings at age 19, leading the league with 47 wins and 239 strikeouts. He also had a 113 OPS+ in 371 plate appearances. 587 innings pitched and he himself ...[...]...

By: Albert7 Fri, 18 Feb 2011 22:54:53 +0000 @John Autin.

No doubt. (although Griffey isn't technically in yet).

4/17 in the hall now, 1 more to come.

5/17 in any group of players to make the Hall is freaking amazing.

Obviously conventional wisdom isn't always wrong.

By: John Autin Fri, 18 Feb 2011 19:22:25 +0000 Um, this list illustrates clearly that playing 100+ games in a big-league season as a teenager is, indeed, a HUGE marker towards an outstanding career. Out of the 17 players on this list:

-- 5 made the Hall of Fame (Griffey, Ott, Kaline, Yount, Lindstrom).

-- Rusty Staub played in 2,951 games (12th all-time), had 2,716 hits and 1,466 RBI (54th), a career 124 OPS+, and made 6 All-Star teams.

-- Edgar Renteria is the 16th modern player with over 2,000 games at SS, and ranks 17th in hits by a career SS.

-- Phil Cavaretta played over 2,000 games in 22 seasons (17 as a regular), had a career 118 OPS+, and won the batting title & MVP in 1945.

-- Buddy Lewis was a very good player who racked up almost 900 games through age 24, with a .304 BA and 112 runs scored per 162 games. He lost 3 years to WWII, returned with 1-1/2 good years, then an off year; he still had 1,500 hits through age 30. But he hurt his back at 31, which pretty much ended his career.

-- Tony Conigliaro's first 4 years were consistent with a HOF career, before the beaning from which he never fully recovered. Despite missing almost 1-1/2 years from the injury, Conigliaro came back with seasons of 20 HRs and 36 HRs. His 160 HRs through age 25 ranks 18th all-time and 10th in the pre-steroid era.

So out of 17 players, that's 8 long, outstanding careers, 1 good 10-year career, and 1 meteor cut down by an errant pitch. Try getting that kind of success rate from any other group you can define by age.

By: Paul Drye Fri, 18 Feb 2011 18:53:57 +0000 @#12: I'd hazard a guess that young players don't soak up experience at the major league level because it starts their arbitration/free agency clock ticking. If a player can't contribute much, it doesn't make sense to waste his first couple, cheapest years -- especially if you think he's going to be something special.