We’re two elections into the first phase of our project, and we’ve elected exactly nobody, though five players from the first two elections will reach our second phase. Will 1920 be any different? Well, it may be. On the other hand, this is the first election during which we’re considering managers who finished their careers under .500, so there’s a chance we see some relative clunkers as candidates.
Sacrifice bunting and every other one-run strategy you can imagine became prominent during the careers of the managers on this list. Runs were scarce enough that this group had to play strategically. Even if it weren’t a necessity, these guys likely would have been considered tacticians more than previous generations of managers. The game was evolving that much. Perhaps nobody did more strategically than George Stallings, manager of the 1914 Miracle Braves. He platooned every outfield position, took a historically awful team from last place in July to the NL pennant, and somehow swept the A’s in the World Series. It helped that Dick Rudolph, Bill James (no, not that one), and Lefty Tyler held the A’s to just six runs in four games. And it also helped that A’s stars Eddie Collins and Home Run Baker stunk it up. Nevertheless, platooning caught on, at least for a while.
This election we’ll consider Stallings, three Hall of Famers, and three other guys. Let’s check ‘em out.
G> WS Flags Yrs From W L % .500 Won Won ===================================================================================== Jake Stahl 4 1905-1913 263 270 .493 -7 1 1 Fred Clarke HOF 19 1897-1915 1602 1181 .576 421 1 4 Fielder Jones 10 1904-1918 683 582 .540 101 1 1 Pants Rowland 4 1915-1918 339 247 .578 92 1 1 Clark Griffith HOF 20 1901-1920 1491 1367 .522 124 0 1 George Stallings 13 1897-1920 879 898 .495 -19 1 1 Ed Barrow HOF 5 1903-1920 310 320 .492 -10 1 1
The results of our third election will be announced on Friday. Will anyone get in? Will anyone move to our second stage? How many will receive obituaries? Tune in when we announce the results of our third election for answers to these questions and more.