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How did Roger Peckinpaugh win the 1925 AL MVP Award?


Orioles4Life21

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I was just looking through AL MVP history when I stumbled upon the year 1925. That year, Roger Peckinpaugh won the award with a slash line of .294/.367/.379/.746...He had 4 home runs and 64 RBIs playing for the Washington Senators. Al Simmons of the Philadelphia A's finished in second with a slash line of .387/.419/.599/1.018. He had 24 homers and 129 RBIs.

So why did Peckinpaugh win the award?

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I was just looking through AL MVP history when I stumbled upon the year 1925. That year, Roger Peckinpaugh won the award with a slash line of .294/.367/.379/.746...He had 4 home runs and 64 RBIs playing for the Washington Senators. Al Simmons of the Philadelphia A's finished in second with a slash line of .387/.419/.599/1.018. He had 24 homers and 129 RBIs.

So why did Peckinpaugh win the award?

Wouldn't it have been easier to just PM Drungo? :P

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I found this answer using google and it makes sense:

What he won was the League Award, which was somewhat different than the MVP. The award was supposed to be give to the player who performed the "best all around service" to his team. Anyone who had won a previous award was ineligible, so Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, George Sisler and Walter Johnson, among others, couldn't be picked. Player coaches and managers were also ineligible
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I found this answer using google and it makes sense:

This explains it somewhat, but how did Peckinpaugh "perform the all around best service to his team" when his numbers are way, way lower than several other players who were eligible? Going by WAR, which obviously wasn't around in 1925, Peckinpaugh wasn't even one of the top 5 most valuable players on his own team.

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This explains it somewhat, but how did Peckinpaugh "perform the all around best service to his team" when his numbers are way, way lower than several other players who were eligible? Going by WAR, which obviously wasn't around in 1925, Peckinpaugh wasn't even one of the top 5 most valuable players on his own team.

His manager called him his "assistant manger". My guess is he was gritty, played the game the right way, was like a coach on the diamond and just knew how to win.

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This explains it somewhat, but how did Peckinpaugh "perform the all around best service to his team" when his numbers are way, way lower than several other players who were eligible? Going by WAR, which obviously wasn't around in 1925, Peckinpaugh wasn't even one of the top 5 most valuable players on his own team.

back then, previous winners, couldn't win again.

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The question has mostly been answered, and the main reasons are the ineligibility of prior winners, the prevalence of voters who gave much weight to leadership, and a very primitive understanding of what made for a productive ballplayer. There are many MVP votes from that era (hell, all eras, but the further back you go the weirder it gets) that leave you scratching your head. A catcher from the 1920s, Johnny Bassler, had one career home run, never got 400 ABs in a season, never scored as many as 50 or drove in as many as 75 runs in a hitter's era, but had three consecutive top-10 MVP finishes. The Browns' Wally Gerber never had a 2-win season by modern metrics but appeared on three different MVP ballots, including a 4th place finish in a .681-OPS season on a 5th-place team.

The 1926 NL voting may be the strangest. Bob O'Farrell won the award in his only year playing 140+ games, with an .804 OPS as a catcher. Was clearly his 3rd-best of four years playing 100+ games. In 2nd place was Hughie Critz of the Reds, who was a 2nd baseman who OPS'd .687. This in a league with Hack Wilson and Lloyd Waner both posting .940-something OPSes and Bubbles Hargrave hitting over .350 as a catcher.

The embarrassing thing for the writers is that you could almost write the last two paragraphs about the 1990s or even 2000s and just change the names. In the late 1990s Juan Gonzalez won TWO MVP awards during seasons where he wasn't in the top 10 in WAR in his league.

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Forgot one other thing: at least for a while (I believe 1922-29) the voters were only allowed to vote for one player per team. For example, if this rule had been in effect last year you couldn't list Chris Davis 2nd and Manny 3rd, you'd have to pick one and leave the other off entirely. I can't come up with an obvious example but this led to some weird vote-splitting among teammates which opened the door to some lesser candidate winning. Basically, you were lucky if you were very clearly the best player on your team and could get all of your team's MVP votes.

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