View Full Version : Three Thirdbasemen

01-18-2009, 05:55 PM
I have been reviewing the statistics of three different thirdbasemen, who were direct contemporaries of each other. One is in the Hall of Fame while the other two are not.
Player "A" in his career averaged, per 162 games, a .267 BA, .322 OBP, .401 SLG, with 69 runs, 159 hits, 27 doubles, 4 triples, 15 HRs, 76 RBI and 2 steals.
Player "B" averaged, per 162 games, a .277 BA, .362 OBP, .464 SLG, with 82 runs, 163 hits, 26 doubles, 5 triples, 25 HRs, 96 RBI, and 3 steals.
Player "C" averaged, per 162 games, a .287 BA,.349 OBP, .462 SLG, with 88 runs, 171 hits, 25 doubles, 5 triples, 22 HRs, 91 RBI, and 8 steals.

Okay, which of these three is in the Hall of Fame--and why?
More info: Player "A" had the longer career, in part because he kept playing while hitting .201, .211 and .149 his final three years. Even then, not all of "A"'s career numbers are superior to "B" and "C". "A" has a big lead in hits with 2848 to "B"'s 2254 and "C"'s 2143, and a small lead in career runs, 1232-1138-1104. "A" also leads in doubles, 482-365-318. However, even with all his extra at bats, "A"'s lead in RBI is slim, 1357-1331-1141; "A" is tied with "C" in triples with 68 ("B" has 67), and "A" still trails in home runs, 268-342-282. Obviously, the percentage stats are unchanged, with "C" leading in BA at .287 to "B"'s .277 and "A"'s 267, with "B" ahead in OBP at .362 to "C"'s .349 and "A" 's .322, and with "B" (.464) and "C" (.462) virtually tied in SLG, while "A" brings up the rear at .401.
Defense? There "A" has a big lead in Gold Gloves, with 16(!), but the other two guys were no slouches with the glove, winning 5 Gold Gloves each.
Peak value? These three's peak seasonal numbers in the more important stats are similar: "A"'s best figures in BA, OBP, SLG, HR and RBI are .317 .368 .521 28 118, "B"'s are .313 .412 .564 33 123, and "C"" are .329 .397 .562 32 119.
"A" and "C" each won one MVP award, and during the same season (different leagues of course). "B" never won the MVP award, but he arguably should have.
Who are these three?

"A" is Brooks Robinson. No Reds fan who witnessed the 1970 World Series can quibble with Brooks Robinson being in the Hall of Fame. Brooks is the finest fielding thirdbaseman I have ever seen.
"B" is Ron Santo, who is probably the favorite pick of most sabermetricians as the one guy not in the Hall of Fame who should be selected by the Veterans Committee.
"C" is Ken Boyer.
Robinson is in the Hall of Fame. Santo and Boyer should be, as each of them probably rank in the top ten all time thirdbasemen.

01-18-2009, 06:37 PM
My favorite nickname of all time, Brooks Robinson, the human vacuum cleaner. He was a joy to watch at third. Other than Reds, he's my all-time favorite player.

01-18-2009, 06:42 PM
damn I was sure you were going to shock us with some reason Edwin is better than all 3 and on a fast track to the Hall!! sigh :)

01-18-2009, 09:25 PM
Ken Boyer was my first boyhood idol, prior to my becoming a Reds fan.
As I originally posted, Brooks Robinson belongs in the HOF, and I agree with those who argue that Ron Santo should be the first guy tabbed by the Veterans Committee for induction. I've just never understood why Ken Boyer hasn't received more support.

01-18-2009, 11:39 PM
I posted last week in the thread on Trammell etc. and the Hall that I thought Ken Boyer was the best eligible player not in the hall. There's a seven year stretch in his career when his numbers are absolutely fabulous. Frankly I think one reason he is so forgotten is that he unfortunately died at a very young age. I've always thought this has hurt Vada Pinson some as well, even though I guess I have to say very reluctantly--because I loved Vada as a player--that he probably doesn't quite belong in the hall.

01-18-2009, 11:49 PM
Boyer from 1958-64: .370 ave. OBP, .502 slugging, 128+ OPS+.

Scrap Irony
01-19-2009, 10:16 AM
Boyer and Santo belong, IMO, but Robinson's in not because of his bat so much as that golden glove. He, like Bench at C, redefined the way the position was played. There is no way to calculate how much he helped the Oriole pitching staff and how good his glove really was.

Robinson was the Ozzie Smith of the hot corner before Ozzie was around. That in itself makes him a HOF.

And he kept the Reds from winning it all in 1970 virtually by himself.

01-19-2009, 10:42 AM
No argument from me about Robinson; I actually think all three should be in. I do suspect Boyer and Santo were hurt by being so closely comparable and linked; voters may have laid off voting for one because they really felt they couldn't vote for the other and they recognized they were so close. I wonder if the same thing hasn't hurt Concepcion and Trammell.