Hardball Retrospective – The “Original” 1983 St. Louis Cardinals

In “Hardball Retrospective: Evaluating Scouting and Development Outcomes for the Modern-Era Franchises”, I placed every ballplayer in the modern era (from 1901-present) on their original team. Therefore, Nolan Ryan is listed on the Mets roster for the duration of his career while the Expos / Nationals declare Gary Carter and the Marlins claim Josh Beckett. I calculated revised standings for every season based entirely on the performance of each team’s “original” players. I discuss every team’s “original” players and seasons at length along with organizational performance with respect to the Amateur Draft (or First-Year Player Draft), amateur free agent signings and other methods of player acquisition.  Season standings, WAR and Win Shares totals for the “original” teams are compared against the “actual” team results to assess each franchise’s scouting, development and general management skills.

Expanding on my research for the book, the following series of articles will reveal the finest single-season rosters for every Major League organization based on overall rankings in OWAR and OWS along with the general managers and scouting directors that constructed the teams. “Hardball Retrospective” is available in digital format on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes and KoboBooks. The paperback edition is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and CreateSpace. Additional information and a discussion forum are offered at TuataraSoftware.com.

Don Daglow (Intellivision World Series Major League Baseball, Earl Weaver Baseball, Tony LaRussa Baseball) contributed the foreword for Hardball Retrospective. The foreword and preview of my book are accessible here.

Terminology

OWAR – Wins Above Replacement for players on “original” teams

OWS – Win Shares for players on “original” teams

OPW% – Pythagorean Won-Loss record for the “original” teams

Assessment

The 1983 St. Louis Cardinals     OWAR: 54.8     OWS: 310     OPW%: .517

GM Bing Devine acquired 73.1% (30/41) of the ballplayers on the 1983 Cardinals roster. Based on the revised standings the “Original” 1983 Cardinals edged the Expos by a single contest while pacing the National League in OWAR and OWS for the second consecutive season.

Jose Cruz (.318/14/92) topped the Senior Circuit with 189 base knocks and registered 30 Win Shares. Terry Kennedy (.284/17/98) and Ted “Simba” Simmons (.308/13/108) shared responsibilities behind the dish. First baseman Keith “Mex” Hernandez earned his sixth straight Gold Glove Award. Larry Herndon (.302/20/92) posted career-bests in batting average, hits, doubles and RBI.

Simmons ranked tenth among catchers according to Bill James in “The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract.” In total, eight ballplayers from the 1983 Cardinals roster registered in the “NBJHBA” top 100 rankings including Steve Carlton (15th-P), Keith Hernandez (16th-1B), Jose Cruz (29th-LF), Andy Van Slyke (32nd-CF), Tom Herr (40th-2B), Garry Templeton (42nd-SS) and Terry Kennedy (52nd-C).

LINEUP POS WAR WS
Jerry Mumphrey CF 2.67 17.37
Tom Herr 2B 1.86 12.24
Keith Hernandez 1B 5.15 22.54
Jose Cruz LF 5.9 30.07
Larry Herndon RF/LF 2.81 21.25
Terry Kennedy C 3.22 25.17
Ken Oberkfell 3B 2.37 16.6
Garry Templeton SS 0.68 9.81
BENCH POS WAR WS
Ted Simmons C 2.93 18.46
Jim Dwyer RF 1.6 9.25
Andy Van Slyke LF 1.56 10.86
Leon Durham LF 1.26 12.58
George Bjorkman C 0.59 2.3
Bill Stein 2B 0.51 5.79
Tito Landrum RF 0.21 1.48
Kelly Paris 3B 0.18 3.02
Bob Meacham SS 0.12 1.89
Mike Vail 1B 0.1 2.18
Jeff Doyle 2B -0.01 0.87
Glenn Brummer C -0.08 1.98
Gene Roof LF -0.08 0.06
Marc Hill C -0.27 2.02
Jim Adduci 1B -0.27 0.06
Bake McBride RF -0.43 3.23
Mike Ramsey 2B -0.57 3.52

The Redbirds’ rotation featured John Denny (19-6, 2.37), the league-leader in victories and 1983 NL Cy Young Award winner. Steve “Lefty” Carlton tallied 15 wins while striking out a League-leading 275 batsmen. Jerry Reuss contributed a 2.94 ERA along with a 12-11 record. Luis DeLeon saved 13 contests and furnished an ERA of 2.68 with a 1.045 WHIP.

ROTATION POS WAR WS
John Denny SP 6.76 22.46
Steve Carlton SP 4.76 18.22
Jerry Reuss SP 3.63 14.76
Danny Cox SP 0.51 4.26
Jim Gott SP 0.39 6.75
BULLPEN POS WAR WS
Luis DeLeon RP 1.6 13.13
Victor Cruz RP 0.73 4.07
Mike Proly RP 0.52 4.49
Ralph Citarella RP 0.26 1.11
Bill Caudill RP -0.06 6.16
Bob Forsch SP -0.21 6.24
Jeff Keener RP -0.22 0
Tom Dixon RP -0.25 0
Mike Torrez SP -0.33 6.46
Kevin Hagen SP -0.38 0.39
Eric Rasmussen SP -0.45 1.87

 

The “Original” 1983 St. Louis Cardinals roster

 

NAME POS WAR WS General Manager Scouting Director
John Denny SP 6.76 22.46 Bing Devine George Silvey
Jose Cruz LF 5.9 30.07 Bob Howsam George Silvey
Keith Hernandez 1B 5.15 22.54 Bing Devine George Silvey
Steve Carlton SP 4.76 18.22 Bing Devine George Silvey
Jerry Reuss SP 3.63 14.76 Stan Musial
Terry Kennedy C 3.22 25.17 Bing Devine Jim Bayens
Ted Simmons C 2.93 18.46 Stan Musial
Larry Herndon LF 2.81 21.25 Bing Devine George Silvey
Jerry Mumphrey CF 2.67 17.37 Bing Devine George Silvey
Ken Oberkfell 3B 2.37 16.6 Bing Devine George Silvey
Tom Herr 2B 1.86 12.24 Bing Devine George Silvey
Jim Dwyer RF 1.6 9.25 Bing Devine George Silvey
Luis DeLeon RP 1.6 13.13 Bing Devine Jim Bayens
Andy Van Slyke LF 1.56 10.86 John Claiborne Jim Bayens
Leon Durham LF 1.26 12.58 Bing Devine George Silvey
Victor Cruz RP 0.73 4.07 Bing Devine George Silvey
Garry Templeton SS 0.68 9.81 Bing Devine George Silvey
George Bjorkman C 0.59 2.3 Bing Devine Jim Bayens
Mike Proly RP 0.52 4.49 Bing Devine George Silvey
Bill Stein 2B 0.51 5.79 Bing Devine
Danny Cox SP 0.51 4.26 Whitey Herzog Fred McAlister
Jim Gott SP 0.39 6.75 Bing Devine Jim Bayens
Ralph Citarella RP 0.26 1.11 John Claiborne Jim Bayens
Tito Landrum RF 0.21 1.48 Bing Devine George Silvey
Kelly Paris 3B 0.18 3.02 Bing Devine George Silvey
Bob Meacham SS 0.12 1.89 Whitey Herzog Fred McAlister
Mike Vail 1B 0.1 2.18 Bing Devine George Silvey
Jeff Doyle 2B -0.01 0.87 Bing Devine Jim Bayens
Bill Caudill RP -0.06 6.16 Bing Devine George Silvey
Glenn Brummer C -0.08 1.98 Bing Devine George Silvey
Gene Roof LF -0.08 0.06 Bing Devine George Silvey
Bob Forsch SP -0.21 6.24 Bing Devine
Jeff Keener RP -0.22 0 Whitey Herzog Fred McAlister
Tom Dixon RP -0.25 0 Bing Devine George Silvey
Marc Hill C -0.27 2.02 Bing Devine George Silvey
Jim Adduci 1B -0.27 0.06 John Claiborne Jim Bayens
Mike Torrez SP -0.33 6.46 Bob Howsam George Silvey
Kevin Hagen SP -0.38 0.39 John Claiborne Jim Bayens
Bake McBride RF -0.43 3.23 Bing Devine George Silvey
Eric Rasmussen SP -0.45 1.87 Bing Devine George Silvey
Mike Ramsey 2B -0.57 3.52 Bing Devine George Silvey

 

Honorable Mention

The “Original” 1982 Cardinals           OWAR: 54.7     OWS: 318     OPW%: .552

The majority of the Cardinals teams from 1977-1985 consistently achieved OWAR scores above 40 and/or OWS scores above 300. Due to the roster similarities I have selected the 1992 roster for additional comment.

The “Original” 1992 Cardinals           OWAR: 47.8     OWS: 286     OPW%: .563

Andy Van Slyke (.324/14/89) led the National League with 45 doubles and 199 base knocks while accruing a team-high 35 Win Shares. Van Slyke collected his fifth consecutive Gold Glove Award and placed fourth in the NL MVP balloting. In his second full season Ray Lankford (.293/20/86) nabbed 42 bags and established a career-high with 40 doubles. Terry Pendleton replicated the output from his MVP campaign in ’91, posting a .311 BA with 21 blasts and 105 ribbies. He delivered a League-leading 199 safeties, made his lone All-Star appearance and earned runner-up status in the MVP vote. Lance “One Dog” Johnson swiped 41 bases and topped the circuit with 12 triples. Mike Perez (9-3, 1.84) and Todd Worrell (5-3, 2.11) anchored the bullpen corps.

On Deck

The “Original” 1992 Padres

References and Resources

Baseball America – Executive Database

Baseball-Reference

James, Bill. The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract. New York, NY.: The Free Press, 2001. Print.

James, Bill, with Jim Henzler. Win Shares. Morton Grove, Ill.: STATS, 2002. Print.

Retrosheet – Transactions Database

Seamheads – Baseball Gauge

Sean Lahman Baseball Archive

 



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Derek Bain is a New Jersey native with a passion for baseball, statistics, computers and video games. He has written a number of articles for Fangraphs and Seamheads, and enjoys spending quality time with his family.

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Lanidrac
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Lanidrac

Hmm, I wonder how the current 2015 Cardinals would compare, seeing as much of the roster including most of the vaunted pitching staff is homegrown (just switch Miller for Lackey in the rotation; bring in Motte, Gregorson, and Salas to replace Walden and the new guys in the late innings, and figure out a replacement LOOGY and long man), while the offense would get Pujols back. They might be pretty short on outfield production, though, and there would definitely be an offensive black hole at shortstop.