Albertson: Greatest Phillies not in the Hall of Fame: Gavvy Cravath

From SABR member Matt Albertson at Philliedelphia on May 26, 2016:

Previously in “Greatest Phillies not in the Hall of Fame,” we examined Deadball Era star and former Phillies captain Sherry Magee. Today, I’ll discuss the case for his teammate Clifford “Gavvy” Cravath and assess his chances at Hall of Fame immortality. Cravath was the premier power hitter of the Deadball era but is given little in regards to Hall of Fame consideration. Today, I’ll present the case against Cravath and then explain why the knocks against him shouldn’t keep him out of the Hall of Fame discussion.

Cravath hit an astonishing 117 of his 119 career home runs between 1912 and 1920. He was the greatest home run hitter of the Deadball Era (1900-1919) where his 118 era home runs outpaced second place slugger Sam Thompson by 22 home runs. What’s more astounding is that of Cravath’s 119 career home runs, 92 were hit at Philadelphia’s Baker Bowl. As mentioned in the case against Sherry Magee, Baker Bowl’s right field wall was only 279 feet from home plate. The oft repeated assumption is that Cravath took advantage of Baker Bowl’s short right field for cheap home runs. It would make sense, given his 92 home runs hit in Philadelphia.

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Originally published: May 27, 2016. Last Updated: May 27, 2016.