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09-29-2004, 01:17 PM
Posted By: <b>Darren J. Duet</b><p>Previous surveys have prompted me to do some intense studying of the early game -- I haven't done this much reading on baseball since I was a kid. By the way, Thank you everyone for this board -- I feel welcome here and have enjoyed reading your stories, responding to your questions, and assisting some of you with your collecting.<br /><br />These days when I review a player's bio and stats I judge with a much more discerning eye than I did when I was a catcher for a little league team. Back then a 20 win season was a 20 win season. I now judge a 20 win season based on a multitude of factors as most adults in-the-know should. The same goes for all batting and pitching stats. It was simple back then to see how great Reggie Jackson was(in the eyes of a kid that is), but today I wouldn't want a Adam Dunn on my team. With this in mind and along the same line as recent surveys, Who do you feel has been an overrated pitcher in the pre-1930 era?<br /><br />My vote-<br /><br />Waite Hoyt & Herb Pennock<br /><br />These guys pitched for Muderer's row and posted at best good numbers, there careers with other teams were fair to poor. Overrated? Very much so -- THEY'RE IN THE HALL OF FAME. I could of made the HOF pitching for the 1920's Yankees -- I'm sure of it!

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09-29-2004, 01:46 PM
Posted By: <b>John/z28jd</b><p>Rube Marquard with his 201-177 record pitching for 5 teams that made the world series,and his 2-5 w.s. record to go along with it<br /><br />He made the hall of fame on a 3 year stretch where he went 73-28 so his 128-149 record his other 15 years is forgotten

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09-29-2004, 01:51 PM
Posted By: <b>dennis</b><p>pennock was voted in by the writers, who if you look at the record of their picks do a really,really good job of only voting real great players in. so maybe he had great stuff.(i never saw him). waite i think got in because he broadcast reds(?) games for over 30 years after he retired and was a good story-teller. i'd pick rube marquard 201-177 record.voted in by veterens comitee in early 1970's when a lot of good players of that era went in this way.

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09-29-2004, 03:11 PM
Posted By: <b>T206Collector</b><p>Led the League in losses in 1906 with 21 and holds the career record with most losses, 316. I don't want to hear what kind of terrible team he pitched for, look no further than the great Walter Johnson who pitched superbly on pathetic teams.

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09-29-2004, 03:19 PM
Posted By: <b>Rob L</b><p>I was thinking Cy Young also which is completely hypocritical after I chose him as the third best. But when this survey question came up, he was the first one that popped up in my mind. I guess the number of wins makes him great, but the number of losses makes him my choice for this survey. I am so CONFUSED!!!!

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09-29-2004, 03:19 PM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>Sandy Koufax. A dud at the begining of his career and benefited from a pitcher friendly park when he became "great".<br /><br />Doh, just realized it said PRE, not POST 1930. Still doesn't change the fact that Koufax is very over rated. He's got Dwight Gooden's career in reverse and no one looks at Gooden awe or thinks he's a HOFer<br /><br />I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Wierd, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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09-29-2004, 03:52 PM
Posted By: <b>T206Collector</b><p>...I just want to say that I've never liked Nolan Ryan. I think he's the most overrated pitcher in the history of the game. I don't care how many strikeouts and no-hitters he's thrown. He was mediocre at everything else. And his won-loss record is basically .500 (324-292). By the way, 292 losses is third all-time. And his 277 wild pitches is more than anyone in history.

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09-29-2004, 04:16 PM
Posted By: <b>John/z28jd</b><p>Not to totally change this thread but i agree with Jay for any era pitchers its Koufax and with Nolan Ryan,not only does he rank up there in losses,first in wild pitches,hes top 10 in hit batters and he leads in career walks allowed by just under 1000 over 2nd place.<br /><br />We've had the Koufax discussion too many times,but hearing all the stories when i was a kid and then actually sitting down and looking at his year by year record its mind boggling how much of a disappointment it was.I checked a few different sources to make sure my initial source was correct.He went out on top so thats how hes remembered but if his career stats were reversed[first year last and vice versa] he would be an afterthought

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09-29-2004, 04:17 PM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>Ryan might be overrated, but you can't tell me you pay to see him pitch. He's the only pitcher in the history of the game that you felt had a chance to throw a no hitter every time he stepped on the mound.Sometimes, there is more to being a HOFer than numbers.<br /><br />Jay<br><br>I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Wierd, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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09-29-2004, 04:25 PM
Posted By: <b>dennis</b><p> A chance for a no hitter everytime he took the mound can be said for bob feller(early career)& sandy koufax.

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09-29-2004, 04:29 PM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>dennis, that's only true of the final 5 years of Koufax's career. He was a bum before then. Ryan's no-hitters spaned his career.<br /><br />Jay<br><br>I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Wierd, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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09-29-2004, 04:32 PM
Posted By: <b>Sean Coe</b><p>I think its Marquard and by a fairly wide margin. I've heard it said that the publicity from "The Glory of Their Times" helped him get in.

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09-29-2004, 04:37 PM
Posted By: <b>dennis</b><p>both ryan and koufax reached star status at the age of 25 ...

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09-29-2004, 05:48 PM
Posted By: <b>steve k</b><p>I was looking forward to this thread when I opened it and instead it gets hijacked by the same old Sandy Koufax and Nolan Ryan bashers. Why donít you start a new thread instead of hijacking what could have been a very interesting thread. Itís the same old diatribes. What the he** else do you want a pitcher to do that Koufax and Ryan didnít do? Well go aheadÖhereís your chance. Iíll repeat the question. What the he** else would you want a pitcher to do that they didnít do? Letís see if you can answer this question in an intelligent way without distorting or twisting the facts. These guys were dominant, threw no hitters, received Cy Youngs, won pennants, hold records, etc., etc., etc. I already know what youíre probably going to do. You are going to nitpick their records to death. Youíll say, &quot;Ohhh, but Sandy didnít have many lifetime wins and Nolan didnít have a great lifetime win percentage.&quot; When are you going to learn that you shouldnít compare lifetime stats of pitchers in the same way as hitters, as far as determining greatness. These guys were great pitchers and your personal vendettas against them isnít going to change that. <br>

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09-29-2004, 05:55 PM
Posted By: <b>T206Collector</b><p>Never got a Cy Young award. And other than in a game in relief during the 1969 Series, never won a championship.<br /><br />He's a great pitcher, no doubt. But people are unduly mezmerized by strikeouts and no-hitters. Strikeouts are fascist!<br />

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09-29-2004, 06:04 PM
Posted By: <b>Jason</b><p>Cy Young is a pretty damn good pitcher in my books, but I also think he is one of the most overated.<br /><br />He is arguably the most famous pitcher of the early era what with the award named after him and the wins record.<br /><br />However as many here agree he wasn't even the best pitcher in his era. (I think Mathewson, Johnson, and perhaps Waddell were ahead of him)<br /><br />To me that's overated.

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09-29-2004, 06:05 PM
Posted By: <b>Pcelli60</b><p>With the way we glorify so many of the 19th and early 20th century pitchers its hard to see them as overrated..But if I must; Willis and Marquard and ONLY because they are HOF'ers..

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09-29-2004, 06:06 PM
Posted By: <b>T206Collector</b><p>Can't be overrated -- nobody knows who he is outside of this chat board. He may be the least deserving of a Hall of Fame nod -- clearly Ryan deserves it well over Marquard. But nobody's ever heard of the guy, let alone idolized him...

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09-29-2004, 06:13 PM
Posted By: <b>Pcelli60</b><p>I love McGraw's Giants, ALL of them. I mentioned Marquard only for arguments sake..But he pitched for 18 years, well past his prime. Won twenty plus games 3 times, and had a winning pct. of only .532. That great winning streak he had and his affiliation with those wonderful Giant teams really helped put him over the top..Larry Ritter certainly didnt hurt...

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09-29-2004, 06:49 PM
Posted By: <b>Pcelli60</b><p>Hey, I just remembered Ted Lyons..

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09-29-2004, 07:20 PM
Posted By: <b>Jay Miller</b><p>Lifetime stats are one measure of greatness but unless there is consistent performance throughout the player's career I think they are very misleading. Granted, it took Koufax a while to hone his pitching skills, but once he did for a solid five years he was as great as anyone ever. If not for physical problems he probably could have kept this up for a while. Lifetime stats are why people think of Aaron as a great HR hitter when he never hit 50 HRs in a season. Lifetime stats are why Yaz is in the HOF when for the second half of his career he was nothing special. And Jay don't forget your guy Kirby Puckett when you are talking about marginal to shouldn't be there at all HOFers.<br />As for most overrated vintage pitcher I will nominate Famous Amos Rusie. He pitched for ten years and had a winning record in only five of those. Doesn't sound like an all time great to me.

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09-29-2004, 07:53 PM
Posted By: <b>Kevin Cummings</b><p>This might surprise some people, but I think Chief Bender and Rube Waddell are not as good as they are cracked up to be.<br /><br />Bender had just two 20 win seasons in what amounted to a 13 year career and never led the league in any meaningful pitching category (ERA, wins, strikeouts).<br /><br />While Waddell <b>did</b> lead the league several times (ERA in 1900 and 1905; wins in 1905 and strikeouts 5 years running), his career was basically only 11 years and he didn't even win 200 games.<br /><br />Both certainly good pitchers, but compared to someone like Walter Johnson pale by comparison.

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09-29-2004, 10:18 PM
Posted By: <b>Julie</b><p>being overrated (even if he lost over 300), you sorta feel like you maybe should have seen him pitch before you say it. I'd tend to go with Young as most overrated, because many think him the best of all time.<br /><br />I REALLY don't care how many Ks a pitcher gets, if he can't win games! Whcih is why I'M down on Ryan...

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09-29-2004, 10:29 PM
Posted By: <b>tbob</b><p>The best pitcher in baseball in the 60's and the best hitter in baseball in the 60's. One is in the HOF, the other is not. Both were forced to end their careers early because of disabling injuries. If Koufax is that great, Tony O. should be a no brainer in the HOF.

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09-29-2004, 10:41 PM
Posted By: <b>Jason</b><p>When it comes to pitching the only thing that the pitcher controls is strikeouts and walks. Hits and outs in play are fluke as you begin to rely on your defense.<br /><br />Nolan Ryan is a hall of famer in my opinion. To maintain the strikeout rate he did for as long as he did is nothing short of phenominal.

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09-29-2004, 11:01 PM
Posted By: <b>PeterP</b><p>Cy Young won 511 games and was consistently great across the pre-modern and modern eras. Were his numbers beefed up a bit by the way the game was played at the time? Sure. But why is he the only man with 500 wins, and one of only two with 400 wins? Surely there would be several others with numbers close to his. But there really aren't any.<br /><br />Overrated? Fine. I disagree, but a valid point. 'Most' overrated? No way.

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09-29-2004, 11:18 PM
Posted By: <b>Jeff Lichtman</b><p>I really have to take strong objection to the claim that Koufax is an overrated pitcher -- let alone the most overrated great pitcher of all time. Yeah, he only had a handful of great years but his career was cut short by injury due to the ridiculous number of innings he pitched despite arm trouble (323 innings one year when his arm was falling off). Using that as a criticism is like saying that Gale Sayers was no good because he didn't rush for 10,000 yards. What a joke. Why don't you look at his lifetime World Series record? Started 7 WS games, had an ERA under 1 and averaged 8 innings per start. And in 1965 he threw a complete game 4 hit shutout and on two days rest threw another shutout, this one a 3 hitter. Are you kidding me? Do you think Roger Clemens could throw 2 shutouts in 4 days in the World Series? Please. Don't compare him to a physical marval like Nolan Ryan who's career was mostly mediocre. Other than the no hitters and strikeouts, did he ever win? Did he ever win the big games? Finally, Koufax's lifetime ERA was .87 a run less than the league's average. Steve Carlton's was .48 lower; Ryan's was .38 lower. Walter Johnson was exactly 1 run lower, pretty close to the most "overrated" pitcher, Koufax. In the end, can you think of a pitcher you'd rather have pitch Game 7 of a World Series for you? No, you can't. Case closed.

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09-29-2004, 11:23 PM
Posted By: <b>PeterP</b><p>Well, as it regards Oliva, the one difference I see between him and Koufax is that Koufax absolutely dominated the National League for the last 4 years of his career, along with two great seasons the two previous seasons. Oliva had some great numbers but didn't dominate. Also, consider that there were many more great hitting outfielders when Oliva played than pitchers when Koufax played, so Oliva gets lost in the shuffle a little. <br /><br />However, this doesn't necessarily mean Koufax belongs in the Hall, either.

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09-30-2004, 12:52 AM
Posted By: <b>John/z28jd</b><p>Jeff there are plenty of pitchers who were very good whos careers were cut short but when i hear stories of how great a pitcher Koufax was and then i see his stats it was one of the most disappointing sights ever as far as stats go.He had a great run but like i said <br /><br />IF YOU REVERSED HIS CAREER HE WOULDNT BE A HALL OF FAMER<br /><br />There are plenty of pitchers who had great 5 year runs who dont even get a hall of fame mention and thats because they didnt go out on top,their arm injuries cut their careers short and they tried to pitch thru it or had to retire or whatever.If Koufax didnt hurt himself and tried to pitch thru it and struggled bad for another 5 years and had a regular length career he probably wouldnt have made the hall of fame.People would be saying he was so good for a stretch,too bad he hurt his arm<br /><br /><br />You have to realize for the amount of talk about him his first 8 years of a 12 year career he was average at best and seeing that for the first time really made me think what the heck are people talking about with him.It was the most unimpressive thing ever<br /><br />If some guy hit between 10-20 homers a year for 8 years and then ran off 4 straight seasons of 60 homers and then retired because of a bad back and then people started calling him the best home run hitter ever id wonder what the hell they were smoking<br /><br />Like i said he had a great stretch but when a guys career wins total doesnt even sniff the top 100 of all-time i have a real hard time calling him one of the top pitchers ever.He might be your one game pitcher but last time i checked 1 game doesnt make a career,ask Jim Paciorek<br /><br />No explaining of certain situations would change my mind on this,ive read a baseball encyclopedia cover to cover,im on baseball-reference.com more than anyone here gauranteed,i read baseball books more than most people,i spend ALOT of time reading baseball history from pre National Association till now,ive formed my opinion based on that research and no ill-will towards Koufax because theres no reason for me to not like him.So i can safely say FOR ME,Koufax is the most overrated pitcher of all-time.No way around that.There was no other pitcher ive read/heard about who when i saw their career stats i was as SHOCKED as when i saw his.PERIOD

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09-30-2004, 01:15 AM
Posted By: <b>Elliot</b><p>John, reading all those stats has clouded your brain. The dominance of Koufax goes way beyond any stats that you can read. Other pitchers might get dominant like the way he was for 1/2 a season, he was dominant for 5 years. His short career just didn't allow his lifetime totals to look good.

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09-30-2004, 01:21 AM
Posted By: <b>Jeff Lichtman</b><p>John, comparing Koufax to Paciorek is a bit of a hyperbole, no? Gale Sayers had two thousand yard seasons and less than 5000 yards in his career. If you just go by numbers, then I suppose Rodney Hampton was a better runner than Sayers. The bottom line is that Koufax was misused badly in his early career and when he finally hit his groove, he was the most unhittable pitcher of his era. For five years. And how many Cy Young Awards did he win? Three, when there was only one award given. And he also won a pitcher's Triple Crown three times. Those accomplishments alone, forgetting his postseason prowess (2 WS MVPs), make it impossible to suggest that he was overrated. Find me another pitcher that has three Triple Crowns. And he did it in four years. The fact that his career was so short is what bugs you and like many stat junkies you look at numbers in total as a measure of greatness. If Barry Bonds was hit by a truck after hitting 754 you'd say that Aaron was a better homerun hitter. By the way, Tom Seaver never won a pitching Triple Crown and Clemens has two, Carlton one. And none of these pitchers are even mentioned in the same breath as Koufax when it comes to his postseason success. Yes, Koufax's lifetime numbers pale in comparison to some of the great pitchers. But if you ask 100 baseball historians who was the better pitcher, Koufax or Ryan, 99 (you excluded) would say Sandy was.

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09-30-2004, 01:33 AM
Posted By: <b>steve k</b><p>Good solid defenses have been made here about Koufax. As if he really should have needed any. And I don't even like the Dodgers. But that doesn't cloud my judgment about Koufax being a great pitcher. In defense of Ryan - he pitched for a lot of teams that couldn't hit their way out of a paper bag. If he pitched for a team that could hit a little bit, his lifetime wins and win percentage would definitely be higher.

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09-30-2004, 01:46 AM
Posted By: <b>Needles and Threads</b><p>Lets see, did Ryan pitch before 1930? Wait, was he born before 1930? What about Koufax? OK, enough stone busting. I'd take Ryan or Koufax any day over a Don Sutton. Don Sutton wasn't a slouch either. Oh yeah, he was probably born after 1930 also. <br />

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09-30-2004, 03:21 AM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>Jeff, nice of you to conviently forget about Koufax's first 7 years. During that run he hed a losing record and never had a winning season. Gale SAyers is a bad comparison because Sayers was great right out of the gate. As I said and John also pointed out, you flip Koufax's career around and you get Dwight Gooden. Do also think Good belongs in the HOF? You should since they have remarkabley similar careers, only one was great at the beginging of his career and faded out, while the other got the benifit (if you can an injury that) of going out on the top of his game. At the peak of his career, no doubt, Koufax was possibly the greatest. But to be considered an all-time great, you need to do it for your WHOLE career, not for just 5 years.<br /><br />Jay<br><br>I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Wierd, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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09-30-2004, 06:45 AM
Posted By: <b>Pcelli60</b><p>Frequently players, and great players at that, start or certainly end their careers with less than great statistical accumulation..But if you have 5 or 6 dominating years in say a 12 year career, why cant you be a potential HOFer?

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09-30-2004, 07:29 AM
Posted By: <b>dennis</b><p>Jays last paragraph is correct.i'd take a lot of pitchers over koufax for career value,but very, few if any, for 1 season,or 1 game.

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09-30-2004, 10:00 AM
Posted By: <b>Elliot</b><p>Gooden had one incredible season.....the only season where he won 20 games. That's right one 20 win season. His lifetime ERA was only .36 below the league average as compared to Koufax's .87. Koufax had 4 (effectively) so so years and then 6 sublime years, with 3 Triple Crowns and 3 Cy Young Awards (when only one was given out). How can you make the comparison??

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09-30-2004, 11:19 AM
Posted By: <b>Chris</b><p>Before we completely bash Koufax's first 5 or 7 years, let's look at how old he was when he came up with the Dodgers in 1955. Only 19 years old. Most pitchers do not pull it all together until they are at least 23, heck quite a few are not even in the majors until they are 23. Koufax's first 3 years he was only used as a spot starter as the Dodgers had a pretty impressive pitching staff already and did not really need a huge contribution from a 19 or 20 year old kid still learning how to pitch. If you look at all his stats you will see like most young pitchers he struggled with his control early on but later was much better in that area. I will also say that it is not always just about the stats. Koufax was a winner and nobody in baseball liked to hit against him in the 60's. That to me says something. You have to realize, Koufax's reputation was noy built on a long productive career like Nolan Ryan but built on his ability to pitch and how dominant he was in the prime of his career in the 60's. I just don't think an argument based on his first 5 years in the league when he was very very young is a very good argument. IMO he does not belong on an overrated team. Yes he only had 6 great years and yes his career was cut short by injury but I think he was one of the best ever. My vote goes to Marquard.

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09-30-2004, 11:49 AM
Posted By: <b>Chris</b><p>One more point about Koufax, with all due respect John you only talk about his stats but you never saw him pitch. I have collected autographs thru the mail for a number of years and often ask the question of players who the best pitcher they ever saw was and Koufax's name comes up as often as any. This coming from people who not only actually saw him play but actually stepped into the batters box against him. To me, that speaks volumes.

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09-30-2004, 11:57 AM
Posted By: <b>Jay Miller</b><p>I have seen baseball games since the 1950s and there are only five pitchers that for any period of time that I thought were unbeatable--Gibson, Pedro, Clemens, Randy Johnson and Koufax. Of those I think Koufax, for his all too brief period, was the best. During that time he was the best pitcher I have ever seen.

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09-30-2004, 12:13 PM
Posted By: <b>Todd</b><p>I can't see him as overrated, much less as one of the most overrated. <br /><br />Chris is right, ask nearly anyone who played in his era, and they will say Koufax was the best and most dominant pitcher they ever faced. No disrespect to Gibson, Marichal and the rest, but I doubt that many would even hesitate if asked the question.<br /><br />Its been nearly 40 years, and old time baseball fans in Minnesota are still mumbling to themselves about that #$*&#*& Koufax. And the Twins even handed him his only WS loss. A 0.38 ERA in three starts, that's just unfair!<br /><br />The points about being him being young and misused are also well stated. Moreover,I have little to no doubt that he would have won another 50 games had he decided to play three more years, with about half that many losses. But he had nothing left to prove, and left on his own terms. Class guy all the way.<br /><br /><br />

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09-30-2004, 12:24 PM
Posted By: <b>Julie</b><p><img src="http://www.network54.com/Realm/14520_sjowall/unhskp.JPG">

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09-30-2004, 12:42 PM
Posted By: <b>Julie</b><p><img src="http://www.network54.com/Realm/14520_sjowall/tgk.JPG">

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09-30-2004, 01:17 PM
Posted By: <b>runscott</b><p>It seems like the best way to judge how great a pitcher was, is by talking with his contemporaries - people who actually saw him perform. All we have is stats and history books to go by.<br /><br />Having said that, I remember as a kid in the mid-'60s, the truly great pitchers were Koufax, Gibson, Drysdale, Ford, Marichal. The rest were all 2nd tier. That doesn't mean there weren't other great pitchers out there, but they weren't phenomenal. And I realize that Drysdale's numbers weren't super-fantastic over his career, but in the '60s he was right up there with the rest of them. As far as hitters, it was Mantle, Mays, Aaron, Clemente, Banks, Brock...and Maris because '61 hadn't worn off yet. Others might have been great, but they weren't the ones your sister had heard of.<br /><br />No, none of us were yelling "Hey, I wannabe Don Sutton!"

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09-30-2004, 01:22 PM
Posted By: <b>Gilbert Maines</b><p>I can not think of Kofax as the most "anything" since he did not have sufficient good years to qualify. Or maybe he did, but where do you draw the line? Herb Score was unbelievable, as was Ryne Duren during that period - but only for a little while. Heck, for a much shorter interval, Vander Meer was actually unhittable. Is two games enough? How about Drysdale or Herschiser's scoreless inning strings?<br /><br />No. You gotta do the time. And since he hasn't done the time, I guess he qualifies as the most overrated modern pitcher.<br /><br />And 'Ol Pete Alexander with half a bag on is my one game pitcher.<br /><br />Gil

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09-30-2004, 01:29 PM
Posted By: <b>runscott</b><p>I can't agree with that - by those standards Niekro, Sutton and Gaylord Perry were shue-ins. It's just a matter of opinion of course, but I think players who were truly great for even 4-5 years should get in. Sandy Koufax is truly one of the greatest pitchers ever to step on a diamond. These other guys are not - they were above average both in ability, and in stamina, but that's not "great". Of course, the HOF isn't about greatness any more. There seem to be three kinds of players who get in:<br /><br />1 - truly great for at least 5 years<br />2 - well above average for 10 years or more<br />3 - above average for a real long time<br /><br />I think category 3 should be erased.

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09-30-2004, 06:56 PM
Posted By: <b>Cy</b><p>This is a great thread. Even though much has been re-hashed. It is always fun to speculate on the best and worst of all-time. I have three pitchers I want to comment on. Two are similar in a way. Koufax is <u>under</u>-rated, whereas Whitey Ford is <u>over</u>-rated. And here is why.<br /><br />I am not going to get into the debate that Koufax only had a few great years. It is a valid argument but not for this post. During those five years Koufax was the best ever. I truly believe it. I saw him pitch on TV many times and he was unhittable. But he was even better than that if you take another factor into account. Koufax played on a terrible team.<br /><br />The hitting support that he had was abysmal. If he wasn't on that team, they would have been lucky to make the first division. Instead, they won World Series. Take the following into account. Koufax had nil run support for the entire five years and secondly, he would have won even more games if he could have pitched against this abysmal team rather than for it.<br /><br />On the other hand, Whitey Ford pitched for one of the premier powerhouse teams of all-time. He gained two huge advantages by this. He had terrific run support all of the time. If you check his stats, his E.R.A. wasn't that terrific. And he never had to pitch against this powerhouse like the non-Yankee pitchers did. Had he been on another club during this era, his record would have been drastically reduced.<br /><br />One final note on Nolan Ryan. I think he is greatly over-rated. I am not going to look up the stats again, but I did it on the other chat board if someone is able to find them. Nolan Ryan was barely better than the teams he played for. I know many of the teams were poor. But his winning percentage is only marginally better than the teams' winning percentages. This is unlike true stars like Walter Johnson, Cy Young and Steve Carleton. These three played on many poor teams but their record was always markedly better than the overall winning percentage of their teams. This is not the case for Ryan.<br /><br />One final note. There are reasons to say that Koufax wasn't as good as people claim because of his short career. But if you watched him play, you would never even consider it. Stats or no stats, over those five years, he is <u>easily</u> the best pitcher of the past 45 years. I won't go any further back because I didn't watch games before then. But I would wager that with a time machine to view all pitchers, no one, not even the Big Train (my hero) was as good as Koufax in his prime.<br /><br />Cy

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09-30-2004, 07:14 PM
Posted By: <b>Albie O'Hanian</b><p>I agree with Jay about the unbeatable pitchers.<br /><br />A couple points about Koufax that have not been brought up yet. Between 1958 and 1961 his record on the road was 28-21 with a 3.46 earned run average. While not indicative of the best pitcher of all-time he was already good. The problem was he got hammered at home at the Coliseum, where the left field line was 251 feet away to the tune of a 17-23 record and a 4.40 earned run average. Had he pitched his whole career in Dodger Stadium (which granted is a great pitchers park) his career numbers would look a whole lot better.<br /><br />While it has been written quite a bit that the Dodgers scored no runs and Koufax won all his games 2-1 and 3-2, the 1962 Los Angeles Dodgers scored more runs than the 1961 New York Yankees.<br />

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09-30-2004, 07:34 PM
Posted By: <b>Paul</b><p>I agree Whitey Ford's .690 win percentage was due in part to the team he had behind him. But he did have one of the best ERA's in the live ball era.

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10-01-2004, 12:05 AM
Posted By: <b>Kenny Cole</b><p>Jay,<br><br>I think you must have made it into that wierd, sick, eerie, evil, twisted, godless place that you wanted to get into. It must have distracted your attention away from the facts. That's why you are so confused about Koufax. :-)<br><br> Koufax was far and away the best pitcher of the 1960s. In that regard, according to Bill James and Rob Neyer in their new Guide to Pitchers, he had the best curveball of ALL TIME and the second best fastball of the 1960's (behind Drysdale - they put his fastball 5th for the 50's). He was a big game pitcher, he was THE pitcher no one wanted to hit against in the '60's, he won 3 Cy Youngs when they gave one away, was an MVP when he pitched for a crappy team, and was pretty much all around a stud. Gibson and Marichal were great, but who won the Cy Youngs when Koufax was pitching? That would be Koufax. Who won the ERA's when Koufax was pitching? Same answer. Wins? Generally Koufax.<br><br>If you want to shoot at him for a short career, go ahead. So he stays there three more years and wrecks his arm. He is dominant (easily) for one more and really good for two. Everyone knew he could still pitch and that puts him over 200 wins. So is your complaint that he should have done that and didn't? Or is your complaint that his career was simply too short, albeit one of the best ever for a 5 year period? <br><br>Kirby Puckett got elected over a similar career because he was consistently among the best. However, he was never the best. Almost every year, there were at least 2-3 position players who were as good or better, sometimes many more. Koufax was indisputably THE best pitcher in both leagues for the last half of his career. The people who saw him voted him that way. Once, they voted him the best player. I don't know what you saw in that wierd, deranged place they finally let you into, but it obviously affected your mind. Come on back to reality. :-)<br><br><br><br><br><br>

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10-01-2004, 12:11 AM
Posted By: <b>Julie</b><p>.......

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10-01-2004, 03:17 AM
Posted By: <b>tim Mayer</b><p>Well I always thought that just " winning " is overated when comparing stats...I never thought CY Young was an alltime great except for his wins,,,,how weird it that?<br /><br />Other overated guys to me over the years..<br /><br />Don Larsen- one great game<br />Koufax- as good as anyone for a stretch, didn't pitch long enough for me to get all the accolades he gets.<br />Roger Clemens- never a true Yankee to me, and not nearly as clutch as I thought he should be,<br />Pedro Martinez- Not a big game pitcher, not a nice guy, <img src="/images/happy.gif" height=14 width=14> I am biased I admit.

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10-01-2004, 04:54 AM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>I can't claim to ahve seen Koufax pitch, but I do know, taht as I have mentioned before, to be an all-time great, you have to do it for your whole career ala Matty, Johnson, Grove, Alexander, etc. Koufax didn't do this. He is one of, if not the greatest peak value pitchers in history, but not thing more.<br /><br />I don't have a problem with putting supernovas like Koufax in. Thing that bothers me is that the same people that think Koufax belongs even though his career was cut short are almost always the same people taht don't think Puckett and others of similar plight belong. I also think personally, I put Mantle in the same catagory as Koufax in that I never saw either play but have to hear the constant fawning of fans that treat them as some sort of god and greater than they really were. Not that I'm saying there aren't great, jsut overblown.<br /><br />Jay<br><br>I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Wierd, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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10-01-2004, 08:06 AM
Posted By: <b>Gilbert Maines</b><p>Hold on. Mantle never was in Kofax's league performancewise. There are no similarities between these players that occur to me. I saw them both play. Mantle was the continuance of the Yankee superstar downgrade from Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, then a host of wannabees. Mantle routinely hit HRs when it didn't matter, then struck out in the clutch. I never saw a player so heavily booed by the fans as this sub .300 hitter.<br /><br />Kofax on the other hand required a lot of coaching when he came up, and apparently the decision was made that the best coaching was available on the parent team, rather than in the minors. He was very wild in the beginning, and it took him a while to gain control. But when he got it, it was like a symphony. Effortless crackling curveball, blazing smoke, and a host of surprises. He made all the money he needed and then bailed. Some hero.<br /><br />Give me the old players before the influence of tv and other advertising money. Players with heart and players with soul. Williams was like Kofax (when Kofax was good). Not Mantle.<br /><br /><br />Berra was the man Yankee fans wanted up there when it was ballgame time.<br /><br /><br />Gil

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10-01-2004, 10:28 AM
Posted By: <b>Chris</b><p>Gil- according to baseballlibrary.com, Koufax was in the big leagues because the rule of the day said Bonus contract players were required to stay on the Major League roster. I'm not sure exactly how the rule read but that as well as better coaching in the bigs were the reason he was not in the minors. Jay, the reason so many people swoon over Koufax is because he really was that damn good. Fans. sports writers, teammates and opponents all say so. They can't all be wrong. I think people who say he was overrated don't understand what his reputation was built on. It wasn't on a long career. It was built on dominating hitters in the 60's and being a big game pitcher who was ultra competitive and considered the best of his era. Koufax retired when he was 31 years old and the comparison to Gale Sayers has already been made. Just because Gale only played 7 or 8 years doesn't mean he wasn't one of the All time Greats. I for one think Kirby deserves the Hall. As for Don Larsen being overrated, he isn't. Larsen is remembered for one thing and one thing only. Nobody pretends he was one of the great pitchers. He just happened to have the right stuff that one day and accomplished something someone had never done before and probably never will again. It was still an incredible accomplishment and that is what he will always be remembered for. It's not like he will ever be in the Hall or considered. You don't have to be a superstar to have a great moment in sports. Every dog has his day.

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10-01-2004, 11:00 AM
Posted By: <b>Gilbert Maines</b><p>A favorite of mine is Pat Seerey. This player always strode to the plate as if he was the Bambino. And he took vicious cuts at the ball with very limited success. About a quarter of the time he would walk back to the dugout after three uneventful swipes. Well, he sure didn't hit for average either. But he did have his day. Four homers in a single game!<br /><br />Now his Leaf card sits right there alongside Adcock, Hodges, Mays, Schmidt and others (soon hopefully to include Gehrig or Lowe - when I will get the Delehanty I can't imagine).

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10-01-2004, 01:18 PM
Posted By: <b>calvindog</b><p>Koufax was hardly a supernova. Steve Blass was a supernova. Mark Fidrych was. Joe Charbeneou was. Koufax was probably the most dominant pitcher over a five year period as one has ever been. And he pitched in pain and he pitched on two days rest in the biggest game of his life--and didn't require middle relief to bail him out. And he never got arrested and he never took the juice. And he turned down big money to retire on his own terms. Rarely has the combination of greatness--both in the baseball sense and as a person--existed in one baseball player as it did in Koufax.

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10-01-2004, 01:47 PM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>you can't compare a football career to a baseball career. Especially RBs. The average career is less than 5 years and maybe even less than 4. It's the rare football career that lasts more than 10 years. The only similarities between Koufax and Sayers is that they were dominant players at the time injuries ended their careers early. Sayers was dominant in college and pros. Koufax spent half his career figuring out how to be a great pitcher. <br /><br />We will all jsut have to agree to disagree on Koufax since I doubt anyone is going to change anyone's mind.<br /><br />Jay<br><br>I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Weird, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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10-01-2004, 02:08 PM
Posted By: <b>Jeff Lichtman</b><p>But of course, Sayers' career, while equally short as Sandy's, doesn't compare to his. Sayers had 2 1000 yard rushing years. Never had a "triple crown" that Sandy had a number of times. Never dominated fully the way Koufax did.

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10-01-2004, 02:37 PM
Posted By: <b>Chris</b><p>You make a very valid point. baseball careers usually last a lot longer than football. Out of curiosity Jay, do you consider Kirby's accomplishments overrated? Also what do you think Kirby's reputation was mostly built on? To me, he and Koufax are similiar in many ways. Almost exact same number years, Kirby was one of the best hitters of his era, both were winners and great competitors, both became quality players at about the same age and sadly, both careers cut short.

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10-02-2004, 12:55 PM
Posted By: <b>jay behrens</b><p>Both were similar. Saying that Koufax was a more dominant player than Puckett is a yes and no thing. It's easier for a pitcher to look dominant because they have a very direct effect on the outcome of the game as long as they are pitching. Hitters have less of an impact because they can only come to the plate every few innings. Thre has been only one true dominant hitter in the past 70+ years and that is Bonds. The game is played completely differently when comes to the plate. <br /><br />Puckett had some outstanding stats, but he brought intangibles to his team. When he made his "climb on my back" statement, you knew at that point he was either going to cement his place as a great player, or go down as just another trash talker. If the Twins don't win the 91 Series, doubt you would see Puckett in the HOF.<br /><br />If youa re going to put in players that dominate the league fora 5 year streach, then put in everyone that did it, no matter what point in their in career it happened. Why should a player that dominates at the end of his career get in over someone who dominated the league at the begining or middle of his career?<br /><br />Jay<br><br>I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Weird, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, evil stuff. And I want in.

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10-02-2004, 03:24 PM
Posted By: <b>Patrick</b><p>Were we supposed to do the most overated before 1930??? Anyways that is a very tough question, especially since most of us didn't see guys pitch before then. I have opinions on Ryan, Koufax, and others. Obviously as you can tell by my user name I am a big Ryan fan. I can say about Ryan that he definitely wouldn't qualify as the greatest pitcher ever(but hes pretty good). If you ask who is the most "dominant" of all-time he migth be in the top 5. Toughest to hit, and he did this for a VERY,long time. 27 years to be exact. But you can't overlook the fact that in 25 of those 27 seasons his ERA was under 4. So to me he might not have won the Cy Young(eventhough he deserved it 3 or 4 years), his consistency was greatness. I have read all of Ryan's books, and as far as pitch count goes, when he was with the Angels he said he once through well over 200 pitches in one game, and Im sure he through well over 150 in most games. Pitch count is a joke!! The bottom line is all you need to do is ask players that played with him, and hit against him, and ask them how good Ryan was. Ask Aaron, Brett, Yount, Carew, Rose, etc. See how good they say Ryan is. He wasn't the greatest off all-time, but man he wa sure exciting and fun to watch pitch for 27 years! I also got to see him pitch in person 8 times while he pitched withe the Rangers. Wow what a thrill!!!<br />

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10-02-2004, 06:17 PM
Posted By: <b>Chris</b><p>I would say in some regards Kirby was as dominating as Koufax. He sure could hit, and played a pretty good OF for a round guy.

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10-02-2004, 09:08 PM
Posted By: <b>Paul M</b><p>Let's pile on Eppa Jeptha Rixey for awhile !!! Someone needs to take the Craftsman power screwdriver to his HOF plaque

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10-04-2004, 02:37 PM
Posted By: <b>Gilbert Maines</b><p>Id say Williams.<br /><br />My choice certainly would not be a player who is unlikely to finish up with a .300 BA.