I have to admit that in the planning phase of this project I didn’t think we’d go three elections without electing anyone. And I really didn’t think we’d go four elections without doing so. Today is our fourth election, and, drum roll please, I have some good news for you. We did it. We finally did it. Later in this post, you’ll read about the first managerial HoMEr.
But first, there’s some housecleaning to take care of. Two of the six we considered this election will be moving along to our project’s second phase, making it eleven total whose cases we’ll review again.
- Frank Chance
- Hughie Jennings
There are 67 candidates who we’ve yet to consider, and there are 78 still alive for our 21 remaining spots in the HoME.
Remaining Remaining Year Nominees Elected Obituaries Continuing to Consider to Elect ================================================================================= 1930 6 1 3 2 78 21 1920 7 0 4 3 82 22 1910 7 0 5 2 86 22 1900 13 0 9 4 91 22
Hall of Miller and Eric
Best known as the man who led the juggernaut 1927 Yankees, Miller Huggins spent a total of twelve years heading the Bronx Bombers and five years before that managing the Cardinals. St. Louis didn’t have a very good team at all, but Huggins twice got them over .500. When he got to New York, the team was a lot better, and when Babe Ruth got there in 1920, Huggins led them to eight top-two finishes in the next ten years. Overall he won six pennants and three World Series, and his 1413 wins will remain in the top-25 until he’s passed next year by Buck Showalter. Of managers with as many as 17 seasons, only ten won at a better clip than Huggins, even with his early struggles in St. Louis. Chris Jaffe explains in his book, Evaluating Baseball’s Managers, that Huggins was probably the perfect manager for Babe Ruth. Huggins’ batters struck out at a higher rate, compared to their peers, than any manager’s batters ever. It was that tolerance for the strikeout that let Ruth become Ruth. Many other managers would have demanded that Ruth shorten his swing and put the ball in play more often. How might the game have changed if Ruth had a different manager in New York? How much less success would the Yankees have had if Ruth had been a singles hitter? And if he had been, would Huggins have become a HoMEr? Perhaps not.
Pat Moran’s claim to fame is managing the 1919 Cincinnati Reds, the team that defeated the Black Sox in the World Series. He also won the 1915 pennant with the Phillies and 748 games overall. Moran was a very good manager, a guy who drilled and drilled and drilled fundamentals. He was good enough that he could have had a HoME-worthy career. But he died during Spring Training in 1924, perhaps of Bright’s Disease, perhaps because he did all he could to earn the nickname “Whiskey Face”.
With apologies to Frank Robinson and bigger apologies to Rogers Hornsby, Tris Speaker was the best player in baseball history to win as many as his 617 games as a manager. Speaker ran the Indians from 1931-1938, winning a World Series title in 1932. An inner circle HoMEr for sure, but he’s no HOME manager.
Rough Bill Carrigan is one of four men to lead the Red Sox to World Series victory by 1918. And he’s the only guy to do it twice, piloting the Sox to wins in 1915 and 1916. Carrigan left Boston in 1916 to go into banking. After eleven years away, he returned in 1927 and finished last three years in a row. With only 489 wins and 500 losses, Harrigan is no HoMEr.
That’s it for our 1930 election. Our 1940 candidates will be posted on Monday, and results will be shared next Friday. Will anyone join Huggins in the HoME? Check back in to find out.