Saturday, October 23, 2010

Tom Glavine IS a Hall of Famer

Earlier I questioned if Tom Glavine deserves to make it into the hall of fame.

Based upon his win total alone, he WILL make it into the hall of fame. There is no question about that. But as we know, wins are a meaningless number when determining if a pitcher is good or not.

In the end of my first post, I said that it is certainly debatable while remaining slightly in the undeserving side of the fence even after baseball writer Dave Cameron responded to my tweet question, "an easy yes."

I decided to tweet this question to another one of my favorite baseball writer's Jonah Keri after he was discussing Andy Pettitte:

"I can understand the reasons to not vote Pettitte. But what about Glavine? Not great so/bb rate, less FG WAR than K. Brown."

Keri replied:

"Sean Smith has Glavine with slightly higher WAR. I'd vote both Glavine and Brown in anyway."


"I just checked out B-R's WAR, and Glavine is ahead of Brown (and Pettitte). I guess the so/bb rate left me underwhelmed."


"Lots of great old-time pitchers had crappy K/BB rates too. Think of Glavine as a throwback. Pitched to his strengths."

There are two WARs: baseball reference and fangraphs. Both are great metrics. Glavine ranks 29th in bWAR. He is ahead of Juan Marichal, Bob Feller and Jim Palmer.

As for that underwhelming 1.74 so/bb rate, Keri was right. Some of the great pitchers of the past had poor so/bb rate. Palmer posted a 1.60 so/bb rate for his career, and Feller ended his career with a 1.46 so/bb rate. In addition, Glavine threw 4413.1 innings in his career and had 14 seasons pitching 200 or more innings. Glavine's hall of fame worth is in his innings pitched, longevity and pitching effectively in all of those innings (career 118 ERA+ and 3.95 FIP).

Tom Glavine--a throw back pitcher--and a hall of famer.

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