FanGraphs Baseball


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  1. He really is a curious case for the Hall of Fame. In fact, a whole chapter in my book looks at him and Jack Morris since the two are very comparable, statistically, and both do well in half of the Bill James tests. He’s been a fav of mine for a while; it’s kind of sad to think that in a few years the guys I grew up with will all be retired. Such is life.

    Comment by Eric Seidman — May 15, 2008 @ 6:14 pm

  2. Mike Mussina will ALMOST make the Hall of Fame.

    Just like he ALMOST won the Cy Young one year. (Top 5 six times)
    Just like he ALMOST won 20 games. (18+ wins five times)
    Just like he ALMOST won 300 games. (He’ll end up with 260-275)
    Just like he ALMOST threw a perfect game (26 up, 26 down)
    Just like he ALMOST won a World Series (A Tony Womack double away)

    I’d love nothing more to see him get a ring in pinstripes and make the HOF, but I’m afraid that he’s just never had that “best pitcher in baseball” period even if he was exceptional for a long time. He won’t make it, I don’t think, not in this era of guys like Smoltz, Glavine, Maddux, Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, and (ahem) Clemens.

    Comment by Russell Kahn — May 15, 2008 @ 8:45 pm

  3. Dave, I’ve been looking for a blog post somewhere on the internet relating to Mussina’s HOF candidacy, but I don’t think it was specifically about him. It was written in the past month (maybe 6 weeks), but I don’t remember what site wrote it. If it was you, or if you know what I’m talking about, could you link me to the article?

    Comment by dan — May 15, 2008 @ 9:16 pm

  4. forget all that, I just found it at USSM

    Comment by dan — May 15, 2008 @ 9:18 pm

  5. Dave,

    Just another USSM reader wanting to let you know I’m reading your stuff over here. Keep it up.

    Comment by Teej — May 16, 2008 @ 4:37 am

  6. What I find kind of crazy is that all of those guys with really slow fastballs actually aren’t that bad of pitchers as a group.

    Comment by Scappy — May 16, 2008 @ 8:06 am

  7. It’s a selective sampling issue Scappy. Pitchers with slow fastballs that are bad pitchers don’t stay in the league, so those who do tend to be better.

    Comment by Sal Paradise — May 18, 2008 @ 5:39 am

  8. Should Mike Mussina be in the HOF?

    Not at all.

    0 Cy Youngs
    0 perfect games
    0 no-hitters
    0 World Series Titles
    0 MVPs


    He played 18 years, 10 with Baltimore and 8 with New York. Ironically, the New York Yankees started out as the Baltimore Orioles.

    During his time with the Birds:

    Five-time all-star
    (on a team that was an o.k. team except for ’91 and 2000, the first and last years he was with them)
    MVP voting twice
    Cy Young voting 7 of 10 years
    Lowest Team ERA 8 of 10 years
    Average an 18% share of his team’s wins

    During his time with the Yanks:

    Never made the all-stars
    MVP and Cy young voting only one year (2008)
    Lowest Team ERA 4 of 8 years
    Only one year had 18% share of his team’s wins (in 2008)

    The biggest thing I noticed was the fact that his completed games dropped off significantly during his time with the Yankees as did quality starts, but his innings per year didn’t. He started more games, but won less. He won more than 50% of the games he started in Baltimore, but less than 50% in New York. Even with a better team, better pitching staff, and a much better General Manager, Mussina did not fair as well as he did with the Orioles.

    Mussina averaged a win less per year with the Orioles, but almost a 3% share of wins more. The Yanks averaged 32 games above .500 when Moose played with them, but when he played with the Orioles, they averaged 3 games above .500. When you look at his post-season numbers, it’s more clear why Mussina is not a Hall of Famer. He can’t win when it counts, the post-season. He’s two games over .500 in the post season and faired the same no matter which team he played for.

    He played in an era where 250 wins weren’t as important a milestone as 300 wins were. He played in an era where performance enhancers ran rampant. I have been saying for a long while that players need to prove they were clean since most are hiding behind the MLBPA and not speaking up about what went on. Especially when you play on teams that had so many PROVEN users, it’s not hard to speculate that Mussina could have pitched 200 innings per year due to a little “boost.”

    When Mussina left the Orioles they sucked bad, but before that they were a decent team. He never had Ace numbers and had an excellent closing staff at New York. This one, to me, is a no brainer, and I live in Williamsport, PA.

    Comment by Nick Falvo — November 21, 2008 @ 7:28 am

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