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  #1  
Old 05-10-2019, 10:02 AM
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Default Would Nellie Fox Fan More Today?

The current leader in MLB with the lowest strike out frequency is David Fletcher. During his relatively brief career he strikes out roughly once in every 11 plate appearances.

Nellie Fox played nearly every game for a decade and a half with over 10,000 plate appearances. Nellie struck out only 218 times in his entire career, once in every 47 plate appearances, and never more than 18 times in a season.

Nellie suffered from a pathetic launch angle and substandard exit velocity by current standards, but advanced more runners without suffering from oblique strains and frequent visits to the DL.

Will there ever be another Nellie Fox? Would today’s pitching prevent him from making contact with the ball? How many PA/SO in today’s game would be considered comparable to Nellie???
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  #2  
Old 05-10-2019, 11:29 PM
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Wow that's a very impressive statistic! Nellie is 5th all time in AB/SO ratio at 47.24 AB per SO. 1st is Willie Keeler at 63.17 AB/SO.

Today's best is Andrelton Simmons at 10.43 AB/SO. Michael Brantley is 5th on the active players list (8.46 AB/SO) so, he's essentially the "Nellie Fox" of 2019!

As far as would Nellie maintain such an incredible prowess today? Absolutely not IMO. Today's hitters obviously place far less importance on not striking out and today's pitchers SEEM to strike out batters at a significant rate (I have no stats to support this, just a generalized guess). Today's hitters place far more emphasis on making hard contact (more home runs even if it costs increase strike outs) and more walks to get on base IMO. It's no longer about the "art of hitting" like the Tony Gwynns and Ty Cobbs of old, I think they're simply concerned with producing runs.. via walk, home run, score. Rinse and repeat. Hell, they barely steal bases anymore. I'd be willing to bet base stealing is at an all time low in the history of the game.

Fox's .288/.348/.363 career slash line with 355 doubles and 2663 HITS leans toward the fact he hit A LOT of singles with a few doubles and triples here and there, with 35 career homers, and very good defense. He almost never struck out, which simply means he grounded out/lined out/flied out a lot instead of striking out. He got voted to the hall in 1997 by the veteran's committee after he fell off the writer's ballot in 1985.

Ichiro seems to me the most comparable type of hitter to Nellie in recent memory. 0.311/.355/.402 slash line, 117 HR, 362 doubles, 3089 Hits and struck out very few times compared to today's standards (9.88 AB/SO).

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  #3  
Old 05-11-2019, 01:52 AM
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If la Tortuga would play more, you would have a new leader. 53 plate appearances with 1 K, last year 3 Ks in 97 PA's. Unfortunately he doesn't walk either-- he walked twice last year and once this season thus far. An absolute joy to watch play, and has already had a night named for him this season. He should be coming back from a tweaked hammy soon, but the Twins can't seem to get him in the lineup.
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Old 05-11-2019, 09:09 AM
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Have been aware of Fox's low strike out ratio for some time. Simply amazing.
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  #5  
Old 05-11-2019, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by nolemmings View Post
If la Tortuga would play more, you would have a new leader. 53 plate appearances with 1 K, last year 3 Ks in 97 PA's. Unfortunately he doesn't walk either-- he walked twice last year and once this season thus far. An absolute joy to watch play, and has already had a night named for him this season. He should be coming back from a tweaked hammy soon, but the Twins can't seem to get him in the lineup.
Nellie didn’t walk much either. He was just too good at making contact. I really think the 99 mph fastballs coupled with the launch angle (uppercut) philosophy and swinging for the fences is responsible for the escalation of strikeouts. I think Nellie would be just fine if he were playing today and wouldn’t have to change a thing.
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Old 05-11-2019, 10:40 AM
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He might have to lose the wad of chewing tobacco for image reasons though.
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Old 05-11-2019, 11:14 AM
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He might have to lose the wad of chewing tobacco for image reasons though.
A little known fact is that the current batting helmet with the jaw flap was invented in the 50s. It was rejected after beta testing because it wouldn't fit over Nellie's wad.

Really!!!!
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Old 05-11-2019, 11:43 AM
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I believe you.
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  #9  
Old 05-11-2019, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nolemmings View Post
If la Tortuga would play more, you would have a new leader. 53 plate appearances with 1 K, last year 3 Ks in 97 PA's. Unfortunately he doesn't walk either-- he walked twice last year and once this season thus far. An absolute joy to watch play, and has already had a night named for him this season. He should be coming back from a tweaked hammy soon, but the Twins can't seem to get him in the lineup.
An impreesive stat line compared to Fox, but at 5'9" and 225 pounds, he is hardly a mirror image of Fox physically, who was taller at 5'10" but weighed a mere 160 pounds.
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  #10  
Old 05-11-2019, 08:09 PM
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With more high velocity pitchers than ever, and fresh relievers inning after inning instead of tired starters, I'm sure he'd strike out more than he did in that era. How much more is tough to say.
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  #11  
Old 05-12-2019, 08:34 PM
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Who really cares?

When he lived and played his heart out for the ChiSox, he whipped his fat bat around and got many a blunk single, or a bunt that he'd frequently beat out. Nellie was a man of his times, and I'm just glad the White Sox had 'em on their side. When the Sox won one of the 2 pennants the Yankees didn't in the 50s, he hit .375 in the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. At least two of their pitchers, Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax, were flamethrowers. Koufax was still a couple years away from stardom, but he did pitch a total of 9 innings and was erratic, but scary when he was good. How Nellie did against curve ball artists like Whitey Ford, I don't know at the moment. Put it this way, if Nell had a weakness, the other teams would have caught on quick and fed him a strict diet of that weakness. But little Nellie didn't back down to anybody, and he got his hits. He was a fixture at the South Side for a long, long time.

--- Brian Powell

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  #12  
Old 05-12-2019, 09:51 PM
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Amazing a team led by two dink hitters Fox and Aparicio and with not that great pitching (Wynn and a great year from Bob Shaw) beat out the Mantle-Berra etc. etc. etc. Yankees, but they had a horrible year.
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Old 05-13-2019, 04:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter_Spaeth View Post
Amazing a team led by two dink hitters Fox and Aparicio and with not that great pitching (Wynn and a great year from Bob Shaw) beat out the Mantle-Berra etc. etc. etc. Yankees, but they had a horrible year.
Not that great pitching? They had the best pitching staff in the American League with a 3.29 team ERA. They had Billy Pierce who was still above even though he had an off year. They also had a good bullpen. Their offense was terrible, 6th of 8th in runs, batting average and OPS+.
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Old 05-13-2019, 10:30 AM
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Amazing a team led by two dink hitters Fox and Aparicio and with not that great pitching (Wynn and a great year from Bob Shaw) beat out the Mantle-Berra etc. etc. etc. Yankees, but they had a horrible year.
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Not that great pitching? They had the best pitching staff in the American League with a 3.29 team ERA. They had Billy Pierce who was still above even though he had an off year. They also had a good bullpen. Their offense was terrible, 6th of 8th in runs, batting average and OPS+.
And the Sox would have won the World Series were it not for Chuck Essegian's WS OPS of 3.417
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:23 AM
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That Fox didn't fan is one reason I am a Fox fan. If Fox played today we fans could watch him on Fox and see how much he fanned.
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Old 05-18-2019, 12:58 AM
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Nellie was a good player, but Tony Gwynn's the far more impressive player from a strikeout standpoint. Fox had a career OPS+ of 93. He was 7% below league average as a hitter when SLG and OBP are considered.

Tony Gwynn struck out 434 times in his career. That's in nearly the exact same number of ABs. Yes, he struck out twice as often as Fox, once in every 21.4 ABs, but where Fox was a lifetime .288 hitter, Gwynn hit .338 for his career with a 132 OPS+. Fox hit .300 six times. Gwynn hit .289 in his rookie year of 1982 at age 22, playing in only 54 games. He never hit below .300 again. 19 straight seasons hitting over .309. Eight batting titles. And while he was never exactly a power hitter, after meeting with Ted Williams for the first time at the 1992 All Star Game when Ted told him he could hit for more power with some adjustments to his approach. Well, his last nine seasons, Gwynn did just that. He hit an incredible .356, with a .400 OBP and a .500 SLG.

And he only struck out 143 times in those 3,587 at bats, or once every 27.5 ABs.

Take that, Nellie Fox.
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Old 05-18-2019, 10:38 AM
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Nellie was a good player, but Tony Gwynn's the far more impressive player from a strikeout standpoint. Fox had a career OPS+ of 93. He was 7% below league average as a hitter when SLG and OBP are considered.

Tony Gwynn struck out 434 times in his career. That's in nearly the exact same number of ABs. Yes, he struck out twice as often as Fox, once in every 21.4 ABs, but where Fox was a lifetime .288 hitter, Gwynn hit .338 for his career with a 132 OPS+. Fox hit .300 six times. Gwynn hit .289 in his rookie year of 1982 at age 22, playing in only 54 games. He never hit below .300 again. 19 straight seasons hitting over .309. Eight batting titles. And while he was never exactly a power hitter, after meeting with Ted Williams for the first time at the 1992 All Star Game when Ted told him he could hit for more power with some adjustments to his approach. Well, his last nine seasons, Gwynn did just that. He hit an incredible .356, with a .400 OBP and a .500 SLG.

And he only struck out 143 times in those 3,587 at bats, or once every 27.5 ABs.

Take that, Nellie Fox.

Ted wouldn’t talk to Nellie, because they were playing in the same league.

Take that, STACHE.
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  #18  
Old 05-22-2019, 08:03 PM
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On my new go to site, Hall of Stats, Gwynn rates pretty well but perhaps not as well as one would expect with that stellar batting average and not terrible power.

Rankings by Hall Rating
129th All Time (Top 0.7%)
116th among Eligible Players
101st among Hall of Famers
12th among Right Fielders

Mr. Fox?
Well.
Rankings by Hall Rating
345th All Time (Top 1.8%)
183rd among Hall of Famers
24th among Second Basemen
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