1931

Three drop off, Leever using up his eligibility, and Tenney and Chapman. These were my two perennial write-ins or 9th or 10th place spots. Since no one else is voting for them in a very weak field, it was time to let them go.

9 Chief Bender 4th
1 Rube Benton
1 George Burns (the NYG lead-off man)
3 Donie Bush
6 Eddie Cicotte
1 Shano Collins
6 Gavy Cravath 5th
2 Jake Daubert
9 Harry Davis
12 Mike Donlin
1 Max Flack
4 Art Fletcher
8 Bud Fowler 8th
2 Larry Gardner
1 Tommy Griffith
1 Walt Holke
1 Harry Hooper
6 Joe Jackson
7 Grant Johnson 7th
6 Benny Kauff
5 Ed Konetchy 6th
1 Nemo Leibold
1 Dutch Leonard
1 Rube Marquard
14 Deacon McGuire
9 Chief Meyers
4 Clyde Milan
1 Hy Myers
1 Bruce Petway
14 Jack Powell
2 Del Pratt 9th
9 Ed Reulbach 10th
13 Cy Seymour
1 Elmer Smith
1 Ossie Stanage
1 Casey Stengel
15 Roy Thomas 3rd
5 Hippo Vaughn 10th
1 Bobby Veach
8 Sol White
4 Joe Wood

Bob’s ballot:

1. Burns
2. Thomas
3. Konetchy
4. Johnson
5. Fowler
6. Petway
7. Bender
8. Cravath
9. Pratt
10. Daubert

Write-ins: Hooper, Marquard and Veach

Boy, am I looking forward to the ’32 and beyond elections. Finally, we’ll be getting some “real” candidates.

Terry’s ballot:

1: Harry Hooper– Strikingly similar career rate stats to George Burns, except that he played about 500 more games. Not as high an ops+ as Bobby Veach, but a much better defender and his teams won – plus he played several more years than Veach, whose career was fairly short for a borderline case. Maybe he ain’t a strong Hall of Famer against the best of the best, but in this group? He looks like Babe freaking Ruth.
2: Gavy Cravvath– I’m honestly surprised that he ain’t getting any love in such a weak group. I know he hit his homers at home, but he did show up for road games. We just elected Tommy frigging Leach and a guy who none of us had heard of a month ago, not Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Are we overly dismissing Gavy?
3: Chief Bender
4: Bobby Veach– He might not be worthy of a book, but he’s worth at least a long chapter. He looked like Gregory Peck, but his personality was reportedly more in line with someone like Ryan Seacrest. He liked everyone, and everyone liked him. Unfortunately he had to spend most of his career dealing with Ty Cobb, who overshadowed him early, mocked him in the middle, and dumped him late. Veach the motion picture would almost certainly have Simon Cowell playing Ty Cobb. I’m not sure who plays Sam Crawford, but I have my eye on Paula Abdul.

Veach fits in with a lot of these guys like Konetchy (not as good), Cravvath (hard to say), Burns (underrated, hard to say) and Hooper (overrated, but probably better overall) as a GOR candidate. He would be a weak member if he gets in, but whomever gets in this year is going to be a weak member. Why not? Good luck, my man.
5: Cy Seymour
6: Roy Thomas
7: Joe Wood– Be sure about him before you dismiss his case; he did some “wins above all star” things that none of these guys can come close to other than maybe Gavy.
8: George Burns- Burns was traded for Heinie Groh, who might be at the top of my ballot if he was eligible this year. He led the league in runs and walks a few times, but if you look at his rate stats he wasn’t all that special at either category. He just came to the plate more than everyone else. A LOT more than everyone else.
9: Donie Bush
10: Mike Donlin

Honorable Mention

Grant Johnson– I had him second last year, and I’ll move him up if anyone else cares but I’m not going to advocate for him.
Ed Konetchy

Other Stuff

Rube Benton– He’s working on a streak of 14 consecutive scoreless innings in World Series play, so keep an eye on him.

Shano Collins- Named as the wronged party in the Black Sox indictments; claim was that he was defrauded out of 1,784 dollars. He holds one of he weirder records you can find; his 8 career triples with the bases loaded are the most ever.

Tommy Griffith– Had kind of a Jim Hickman/Clarence Gaston year in 1915, setting most of his career highs and playing in 160 games. BTW, does anyone else remember Clarence before Cito? I had his baseball card, he held his hands way up in the air before he swung; supposedly to compensate for a hitch in his swing.

Nemo Leibold– Found him. Oh wait, we aren’t doing that?

Dutch Leonard– Yaknow, I don’t mind those erstwhile stat mavens who are working hard to get the old stats just right, but it’s confusing when a past record won’t sit still. At the moment Leonard’s era is listed at 0.96. I remember it as 0.90, and later 1.01. Are they negotiating it? Why does it go up and down? Should I buy low, or sell high?

Rube Marquard– Poor man’s Steve Carlton (before the rice workouts Steve Carlton, not the later greater version). Career era+ was barely over 100, and his record was barely over .500 despite playing for really good teams.

Hy Myers– Led the NL in slugging in 1919 with .436. He wouldn’t have made the top ten in the AL. Would have been a solid MVP candidate in 1919-1920.

Bruce Petway– What’s a Petway? I guess it depends on the pet…. I find it pleasing that we are enlightened enough to have a black ballplayer on the ballot from those old, dark times who was so obviously not good enough for enshrinement that we can laugh at him a little and dismiss him. Thank you, Bruce Petway, for sucking out loud on paper. You are a national hero. Don’t forget to pick up your gift bag on the way out.

Just so I don’t get hate mail, I noted that he was in medicine before he played baseball and that he was known for his throwing arm. I still think he’s a public service for the GOR as a “dismiss without prejudice” symbol more than anything else (to us, anyway). Bruce, seriously. Thank you. Rest in peace, my man.

Elmer Smith– I remember him from the old “Strange but True Baseball Stories” series. He hit the homer in the 1920 World Series game 5, the first grand slam in World Series history and the only one until the 1950’s. I seem to remember the writer describing him as old and past his prime, but the records don’t support that. He had the triple double of extra base hits in 1920, and he was only 27 years old. He was very good in 1921, in full time play. His career rates are similar to this year’s contenders, but in less than half the atbats.

Oscar Stanage– I love this kind of crap for some reason… in the books he had a 20 year major league career, but 12 years is more accurate. He got 1 atbat in 1906, then he was a full time major leaguer from 1909-1920, then he got 5 atbats in 1925 while serving as a coach for his old friend Ty Cobb. The records show his professional career running from 1903-1926, with 5 years coaching for the Pirates added on from 1927-1931. He died in 1941. My guess is that he was coaching someone, somewhere, until his death. He was a baseball lifer. He was known for his throwing arm and his records as a hitter weren’t impressive, so I guess he was the white Bruce Petway.

Casey Stengel– According to BBR the most similar player to Casey was fellow Hall of Fame manager Billy Southworth with a score of 953. They were traded for each other on November 22, 1923, along with a couple of other players. Southworth’s last World Series appearance as a manager was 1948. Casey’s first was 1949.

Results:

Eight ballots, the results:

55 Roy Thomas
51 Bobby Veach
***************
42 George Burns
40 Harry Hooper
32 Ed Konetchy
31 Chief Bender
28 Gavy Cravath
26 Hippo Vaughn
19 Art Fletcher
19 Bud Fowler
19 Jack Powell
16 Joe Wood
14 Joe Jackson
13 Larry Gardner
13 Cy Seymour
12 Del Pratt
12 Ed Reulback
11 Grant Johnson
9 Bruce Petway
7 Dutch Leonard
7 Deacon McGuire
5 Mike Donlin
3 Donie Bush
2 Jake Daubert
1 Eddie Cicotte
1 Rube Marquard

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