March 31, 2023

Hardball Retrospective – 1909 Season Replay

September 22, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

In “Hardball Retrospective: Evaluating Scouting and Development Outcomes for the Modern-Era Franchises”, I placed every ballplayer in the modern era (from 1901-present) on their original team. Therefore, Ty Cobb is listed on the Tigers roster for the duration of his career while the Red Sox claim Tris Speaker and the Senators declare Walter Johnson. I calculated revised standings for every season based entirely on the performance of each team’s “original” players. I discuss every team’s “original” players and seasons at length along with organizational performance with respect to the Amateur Draft (or First-Year Player Draft), amateur free agent signings and other methods of player acquisition.  Season standings, WAR and Win Shares totals for the “original” teams are compared against the “actual” team results to assess each franchise’s scouting, development and general management skills.

Using a modified version of the Lahman Database (with the ballplayers linked to their original franchises), I imported the players into Digital Diamond Baseball and conducted a full-season replay with the as-played 1909 schedule.

A few housekeeping items:

  • Players on defunct teams such as Honus Wagner, Tommy Leach and Fred Clarke (Louisville Colonels) along with Cy Young and Bobby Wallace (Cleveland Spiders) are excluded because their original team’s league ceased to exist by 1901.
  • I attempted to emulate player usage in the DDBB replay to real-life usage whenever possible.

This series of articles will reveal the results for each season replay and compare the outcomes to the OPW%, OWAR and OWS standings from Hardball Retrospective. “Hardball Retrospective” is available in digital format on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes and KoboBooks. The paperback edition is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and CreateSpace. Supplemental Statistics, Charts and Graphs along with a discussion forum are offered at

Don Daglow (Intellivision World Series Major League Baseball, Earl Weaver Baseball, Tony LaRussa Baseball) contributed the foreword for Hardball Retrospective. The foreword and preview of my book are accessible here.


OWAR – Wins Above Replacement for players on “original” teams

OWS – Win Shares for players on “original” teams

OPW% – Pythagorean Won-Loss record for the “original” teams

1909 Replay Results

The Athletics quickly emerged as the front-runner in the Junior Circuit, recording 101 victories against only 52 losses. Eddie Collins anchored the keystone position and earned the batting crown with a .351 BA. “Cocky” paced the American League in OBP (.426), hits (227) and runs scored (127). Frank “Home Run” Baker drove in 102 baserunners and legged out a League-best 18 triples. Chief Bender (23-10, 2.04) and Harry Krause (18-8, 2.04) tied for second place in ERA while Eddie Plank (24-13, 2.44) led the A’s in victories. Boston seized the runner-up slot in the American League standings, winning 94 contests. Tris Speaker topped the circuit with 9 round-trippers and a .457 SLG. Frank Arellanes (27-9, 2.13) recorded the most victories in the A.L. and “Smoky” Joe Wood contributed a 21-11 mark. “Prince” Hal Chase swatted 8 big-flies for the third-place Highlanders.

Ty Cobb (.339/5/103) finished runner-up in batting average, OBP (.394), SLG (.444), base hits (216) and triples (17). Tigers’ shortstop Donie Bush coaxed a League-high 93 bases on balls, accrued 119 tallies and tied the Senators’ Dave Altizer for the stolen base crown with 64 successful swipes. Browns’ outfielder Roy Hartzell pilfered 57 bags and teammate Bill Bailey registered a 16-9 mark with a League-best ERA of 1.89. White Sox hurler Frank “Piano Mover” Smith completed all of his 44 starts, posting a 22-22 record with a 2.31 ERA. Walter “Big Train” Johnson tied Smith for the strikeout title with 126 punch-outs. Tim Jordan clubbed 38 two-baggers to lead the League. The Naps finished dead-last with 96 losses.

Pittsburgh claimed the National League pennant with 97 victories. The Bucs were never seriously threatened as the Giants ended the season five games in arrears. Howie Camnitz outclassed opposition batsmen as he compiled a record of 29-5 with a 1.69 ERA. Danny Murphy collected a batting title with a .318 average and led the League with 19 triples while finishing runner-up in OBP and SLG. “Laughing” Larry Doyle slugged 8 circuit clouts to take the home run crown and placed runner-up with 102 aces. Harry H. Davis nabbed a League-high 52 bags and slashed 18 three-base hits. Christy Mathewson (22-11, 1.86) finished second to Camnitz in the ERA race and notched a complete game in all of his 33 starting assignments.

Reds’ second-sacker Dick Egan placed third with a .309 BA and .359 OBP. Mike Mitchell topped the charts with 104 tallies while teammate Sam Crawford took the RBI title with 100. Orval Overall (25-11, 2.15) ended the campaign in third place for victories and ERA. Phillies’ second baseman Nap Lajoie paced the National League with a .401 OBP and .454 SLG while barely missing his fourth batting championship. Sherry Magee drilled a League-best 41 doubles. Mordecai Brown (26-14, 2.21) completed each of his 39 starts for the Redbirds. Ed Konetchy batted .307 with 194 base knocks. Ed Reulbach paced the Cubs with a 2.38 ERA and Fred Beebe tallied 21 victories. John Hummel (Superbas) and Fred Tenney (Doves) each belted 7 dingers to place runner-up in the home run charts.

1909 Hardball Retro Replay – Final Standings

1909 AL Batting Leaders 1909 AL Pitching Leaders
Team Batting Team Pitching
1909 Boston Red Sox 1909 Boston Red Sox
1909 Chicago White Sox 1909 Chicago White Sox
1909 Cleveland Naps 1909 Cleveland Naps
1909 Detroit Tigers 1909 Detroit Tigers
1909 New York Highlanders 1909 New York Highlanders
1909 Philadelphia Athletics 1909 Philadelphia Athletics
1909 St. Louis Browns 1909 St. Louis Browns
1909 Washington Senators 1909 Washington Senators


1909 NL Batting Leaders 1909 NL Pitching Leaders
Team Batting Team Pitching
1909 Boston Doves 1909 Boston Doves
1909 Brooklyn Superbas 1909 Brooklyn Superbas
1909 Chicago Cubs 1909 Chicago Cubs
1909 Cincinnati Reds 1909 Cincinnati Reds
1909 New York Giants 1909 New York Giants
1909 Philadelphia Phillies 1909 Philadelphia Phillies
1909 Pittsburgh Pirates 1909 Pittsburgh Pirates
1909 St. Louis Cardinals 1909 St. Louis Cardinals


Replay Results vs. Hardball Retrospective Findings

The Athletics edged the Tigers by two games to secure the American League pennant. The Giants cruised to victory in the National League by a comfortable margin over the Cubs and Reds. The A’s paced the Junior Circuit in OWAR (43.6) while the Red Sox earned the top spot with 244 OWS. The Giants led the Senior Circuit with a 53.9 OWAR and the Reds compiled a Major-League leading 298 OWS.

On Deck

1910 Season Replay

References and Resources

Baseball America – Executive Database


James, Bill, with Jim Henzler. Win Shares. Morton Grove, Ill.: STATS, 2002. Print.

Retrosheet – Transactions Database 

Seamheads – Baseball Gauge

Sean Lahman Baseball Archive

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