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  #71  
Old 07-11-2018, 11:25 PM
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71buc 71buc is offline
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Rhys I disagree with you but respect your knowledge and opinion. Like I said, my opinion wouldn't be popular. That's alright, and it's what makes these discussions interesting. By the way Dee Gordon, and Segura wouldn't be permitted on the field during that time.

Evolution in sport does happen rapidly. Jesse Owens in1936 ran a 9.4 100yd Dash (World Record). A scant thirty nine years later Houston McTear sets the HIGH SCHOOL 100yd dash record set at 9.3.

I get the romance of the good old days but disagree that those players could compete at the same level today. However I do agree that the best players of any generation could play at any point in time. Nonetheless, their numbers wouldn't be the same facing today's players. Thier numbers were bolstered by comparatively less talented overall competition.

I am 5'5" on a good day and love Jose Altuve. However, size does matter. Jimmy Foxx was considered so large they called him the Beast and Double X. As the legend goes he was trapped not scouted. Mr. Foxx was 6ft 190 lbs. Today the average middle infielder is that size. How many pitchers sat at 90+ mph in Ruth and Cobb's day? Today the average fastball is 93 MPH. Today pitchers regularily light up the gun at 100 mph. Players do strike way too much today but the pitching does have some effect on those punchout totals.

As I said, I too am a dyed in the wool romantic. Why else would I collect this silly stuff? However, I am also a realist. A model T will never compete with a Ferrari, and a Sopwith Camel will never compete with an F-18. You can have Tris Speaker. I'll take Trout. You can have Honus Wagner I'll take Manny Machado. You can have Christy Mathewson I'll take Clayton Kershaw. These discussions are why I love baseball. No one argues for Bob Cousey over Stephen Curry or George Mikan over Labron. No one compares Johnny Unitas to Steve Brady. However in baseball we do exactly that.
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Last edited by 71buc; 07-11-2018 at 11:45 PM. Reason: an inability to spell
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  #72  
Old 07-12-2018, 12:27 AM
MacDice MacDice is offline
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If I am putting together a greatest team from the 1960s. I don’t have Roberto in my starting outfield. Mantle, Mays and Aaron.
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  #73  
Old 07-12-2018, 12:28 AM
Aquarian Sports Cards Aquarian Sports Cards is online now
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Originally Posted by 71buc View Post
Evolution in sport does happen rapidly. Jesse Owens in1936 ran a 9.4 100yd Dash (World Record). A scant thirty nine years later Houston McTear sets the HIGH SCHOOL 100yd dash record set at 9.3.
Humans as a species have not evolved in 100 years. Our environment (Nutritition, training, etc) has.
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  #74  
Old 07-12-2018, 01:26 AM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
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Imho, one must remember that while the international talent pool of players has greatly increased, we are losing a large number of elite talent to the NBA, NFL, NHL and soccer. I also personally agree that the players of yesteryear, given the advantages of nutrition, training, etc. that current players enjoy, could certainly compete quite well today, even at an elite level. Pitching wise, the slider was the big development and detriment to hitting between the early 40's and today, when it came into widespread use after WWII. Interestingly, when it did, Ted Williams' walks went up into the stratosphere: 156 in 1946, and 162 in his second triple crown year in 1947 (giving him an OBP of .499!!!) because with his 20-10 eyesight and reflexes, he could detect the spin (a small circle is seen at the center of the spinning slider), gauge where that pitch would end up, and take it for a ball. Joe DiMaggio, on the other hand, according to Ted in his book, "My Turn at Bat," had trouble with the slider, and his post WWI stats seem to largely verify this conclusion.

And I believe the poster above is entirely correct regarding human evolution or the lack of same over the last hundred years. I often faced off against one of the best pitchers I had ever seen (he lived just a few houses away) in games of "strikeout" in the late '60's, and played with him on many summer league teams (they were good teams, with 8 guys going on to play in college), and he was F-A-S-T for any era, clocked just a year or so later in college at 94 mph. He was 5'9" and 170-175 pounds, and never worked out! Just think what he would have been with modern training methods--97 or 98 mph almost certainly.

I personally think that those who say Walter Johnson threw about 90 mph are absolutely nuts--human anatomy and coordination haven't changed since then, and if the neighbor/teammate I's talking about could hit 94 mph in the late '60's, Walter was dead solid certain to have thrown significantly faster than that. Walter had greater size and strength in general and his notoriously long arms would have given him greater leverage. Nolan Ryan was clocked at 102 mph in the '70's in the 9th inning, likely after having thrown 200 pitches. Jay Jaffe, in his recent book, "The Cooperstown Casebook," states at p 361 that Bob Feller was timed at 107.9 mph in 1946 (his 348 K year) in a test using two photoelectric cells. Even allowing for some reasonable margin for error given the methodology, I think we can rest well-assured that Rapid Robert was easily over 100 mph on his good days with his fastest pitches. IMHO--and it is just that--my personal opinon--most if not all of the greats of yesteryear would be among the elite of the elite today, given their adaptation to better training methods and so on.

Thanks again Gentlemen, for a most lively and interesting discussion. And yes, I think Jackie ranks well up with the all time greats at second, especially with (by recollection only) a .409 OBP. What a tremendous table-setter for Snider and Hodges! Hornsby is the highest ever for a right-handed hitter, just 24 points higher, .433. Jackie's performance would indeed have been even better had he been given his chance earlier, rather than 28. Both he and Roberto are to be truly treasured (and Kaline too, as he is in and around Detroit).

Highest regards,

Larry

Last edited by ls7plus; 07-12-2018 at 01:38 AM.
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  #75  
Old 07-12-2018, 05:19 AM
obcbobd obcbobd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 71buc View Post
Evolution in sport does happen rapidly. Jesse Owens in1936 ran a 9.4 100yd Dash (World Record). A scant thirty nine years later Houston McTear sets the HIGH SCHOOL 100yd dash record set at 9.3.
Yes when Olympic Bronze Medalist Andre De Grasse ran in the same conditions and same equiptment as Jesse Owens his time was 11 seconds

https://www.flotrack.org/articles/50...e-owens-spikes

I think Cobb, Ruth, Wagner etc. would do fine in today's game.
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  #76  
Old 07-12-2018, 08:00 AM
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I have always thought the best of the best and maybe even just the average major leaguer was far more talented in the dead ball era than they are today. So many more people played baseball in the dead ball era. Every single boy in every single town, and you had to be better than all of them. Now you only have to be better than the kids who decide to play baseball, which the news tells you is a smaller and smaller pool every year.
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  #77  
Old 07-12-2018, 08:39 AM
tschock tschock is offline
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Originally Posted by Aquarian Sports Cards View Post
He had a 10 year career that only started when he was 28....For traditionalists he won ROY ...
A total nit, as I appreciate what you are saying in general, but it could be easily argued that this may 'soften' the ROY award since I believe 28 is close to a player's peak year. At least more so than 21-23-ish.
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  #78  
Old 07-12-2018, 08:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 71buc View Post
Evolution in sport does happen rapidly. Jesse Owens in1936 ran a 9.4 100yd Dash (World Record). A scant thirty nine years later Houston McTear sets the HIGH SCHOOL 100yd dash record set at 9.3.
That is a poor example. You are completely ignoring the advances in technology. Lighter shoes with better spikes, aerodynamic suits, better starting blocks and faster tracks.

Owens actually set that record in 1935 at the Big 10 championships during a 45 minute span in which he set or tied 4 world records. One of those records was a long jump of 26 8 1/4. That random jump would have placed him 6th against a field of modern athletes concentrating on one event, using modern equipment and modern training methods at the 2016 Olympics. Athletes aren't that different.

In Baseball, the greatest players run chronologically from Wagner and Cobb through the guys who debuted in the 50s. In the NFL, the greatest players start after that, from Unitas and Brown through today with Brady and Manning. In the NBA, the greatest players start after that, starting with Russell and Chamberlain through Jordan and to today with LeBron James (Durant, Curry, etc.).
I don't think it is a matter of today's Baseball players being better or worse athletes. I see it as Baseball going from the #1 sport to #3 and the best athletes choosing other sports. If Jackie Robinson graduated from UCLA this year, would he choose to play Baseball? In my opinion, no.
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  #79  
Old 07-12-2018, 08:50 AM
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As for Owens, it's not only a matter of technology changing, it's quantum differences in training sophistication and focus. I don't think Owens had a Bobby Kersee or similar type planning 6 hours of his day all devoted to squeezing out that last bit of speed.
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Last edited by Peter_Spaeth; 07-12-2018 at 08:51 AM.
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  #80  
Old 07-12-2018, 08:52 AM
tschock tschock is offline
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Nonetheless, If I was building a team today and could pick any player in baseball history I would take Mike Trout over both of them any day of the week.
Yeah, and drop Alexander or Caesar into WWII (with their lack of knowledge and experience in the advancement of tools and tactics) and see how they would do.
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