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southsider2k5

Negro leagues elevated to major league status

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Absolutely huge for Minnie. Although he should've been a Hall of Famer already in his own right.

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The recognition of the Negro Leagues is a wonderful idea.  But I was always under the belief that the Negro Leagues lacked the detailed record keeping of AL/NL baseball.  Lots of missing or non existent box scores combined with a lack of centralized record keeping meant that the numbers were no where near as accurate as AL/NL records.  How are they going to reconcile that?  Do we know how many HR Gibson had, or K's Paige had aside from the obvious fact that they were great ballplayers who would have dominated AL/NL baseball?

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And looking into this a little further, I wonder if they are only going to use numbers that were compiled from Negro League games as determined by a study done around 15 years ago.  If so, Gibson only had 115 HR.  The 800-1000 number includes barnstorming exhibitions vs. non-Negro League teams and is only an estimate.

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It’s about time.
 

It appears the cutoff of years prior/after 1920-1948 is due to lack or research/data. Baseball Reference has the same time period of Negro League stats available on their website, and their footnotes indicate these stats were made available from the Hall of Fame research project.

https://www.baseball-reference.com/register/league.cgi?group=NLB&year=1951

At first I thought the omission of the final twelve seasons perhaps had to do with locking in Hank Aaron’s total HRs. The league was strong until the early 1950s. I believe they should include the final twelve seasons if possible / feasible.

1936negroleagueall-stars.jpg

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Edited by South Side Hit Men

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41 minutes ago, South Side Hit Men said:

It’s about time.
 

It appears the cutoff of years prior/after 1920-1948 is due to lack or research/data. Baseball Reference has the same time period of Negro League stats available on their website, and their footnotes indicate these stats were made available from the Hall of Fame research project.

https://www.baseball-reference.com/register/league.cgi?group=NLB&year=1951

At first I thought the omission of the final twelve seasons perhaps had to do with locking in Hank Aaron’s total HRs. The league was strong until the early 1950s. I believe they should include the final twelve seasons if possible / feasible.

 

It has more to do with the color barrier getting broken in baseball in 1947 and the flood of talent moving to MLB.  Stats won't tell the whole story there.  AAA stats don't collapse because the good players get called up.

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5 hours ago, ThirdGen said:

The recognition of the Negro Leagues is a wonderful idea.  But I was always under the belief that the Negro Leagues lacked the detailed record keeping of AL/NL baseball.  Lots of missing or non existent box scores combined with a lack of centralized record keeping meant that the numbers were no where near as accurate as AL/NL records.  How are they going to reconcile that?  Do we know how many HR Gibson had, or K's Paige had aside from the obvious fact that they were great ballplayers who would have dominated AL/NL baseball?

The story shared in the post above from SS2k5 explains this issue.

https://www.theringer.com/mlb/2020/12/16/22178257/mlb-acknowledge-negro-leagues-officially

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13 hours ago, ThirdGen said:

The recognition of the Negro Leagues is a wonderful idea.  But I was always under the belief that the Negro Leagues lacked the detailed record keeping of AL/NL baseball.  Lots of missing or non existent box scores combined with a lack of centralized record keeping meant that the numbers were no where near as accurate as AL/NL records.  How are they going to reconcile that?  Do we know how many HR Gibson had, or K's Paige had aside from the obvious fact that they were great ballplayers who would have dominated AL/NL baseball?

The HOF is using the research from the 1920-1948 period. Per the great article @KipWellsFan posted, about 73% of the known Negro League games (9,137 of 12,525) are in the database. Research will continue and stats adjusted with new information. They were very strict with the stats counted, including only Negro League games and not including the various barnstorming games.

8 hours ago, KipWellsFan said:

The story shared in the post above from SS2k5 explains this issue.

https://www.theringer.com/mlb/2020/12/16/22178257/mlb-acknowledge-negro-leagues-officially

Great article, thanks for posting.

9 hours ago, southsider2k5 said:

It has more to do with the color barrier getting broken in baseball in 1947 and the flood of talent moving to MLB.  Stats won't tell the whole story there.  AAA stats don't collapse because the good players get called up.

The article lays out the primary reason the cut off was 1948, the inability to compile statistics post 1948. Before reading the article, I would have thought it would have been easier to compile the more recent stats and hard for the 1920s, but the opposite is true due to the fact many newspapers including primary sources like Black Newspapers dropped publishing box scores for publishing space in the 1940s. Nearly every game in the 1920s is included in the database, but only 50 percent of games from 1940-1948.

The article also notes many historians feel the cut off should be 1950 or 1951, after which MLB's integration efforts resulted in a significant drop in Negro League talent beyond just a handful of superstars. It took several years before a majority of teams integrated (only three by the 1948 cutoff), and many more before a large number of black players successfully integrated MLB beyond the handful of elite superstars most people can name off the top of their head. 

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This is fantastic, even though there are still some questions that are going to be impossible to answer (the main one I think everyone has, exactly how much would Josh Gibson have raked?) The inconsistent stat keeping and uneven levels of talent they played shouldn't really be an argument against them because that's like punishing the Negro Leagues again for something MLB did to them. You can say "they didn't face MLB talent" but you can just as easily say "MLB didn't face Negro League talent" right back. Satchel Paige never faced Babe Ruth and Joe DiMaggio but they never faced him either.

So yeah, compiling the statistics and making them apples to applies is kind of a mess, but certainly better than not even acknowledging them at all.

Edited by lostfan
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There is a good article on Thursday linked below regarding some of the ramifications of this change.

https://www.mlb.com/news/how-negro-leagues-stats-may-change-baseball-leaderboards

Some major changes include:

  • Josh Gibson’s .461 now the all time highest batting average for a season.
  • Josh Gibson’s .361 career batting average now second all time behind Ty Cobb’s .367.
  • Josh Gibson’s career 200 OPS + second all time to Babe Ruth.
  • 24 additional No Hitters, including a new Opening Day no hitter by Leon Day.
  • Minnie Minoso’s updated hit total to 2,117.
  • Updated RBI totals pushing Roy Campanella (1,027) and Larry Doby  (1,099) over the 1,000 mark.

 

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