#Hot Corner

eBay Item of the Day: Overrated but Valued

But is it valued because he's overrated?

Which Hall of Fame player has the worst credentials for being there? My money has always been on 19th Century outfielder Tommy McCarthy. Now that we have the modern metrics, it turns out that was a pretty good hunch. McCarthy has the lowest WAR of any position player in the Hall who is not there primarily for managing. In fact, there's even a pitcher - Red Ruffing - who had a better offensive career than did McCarthy. I realize that they will probably never remove anyone from the Hall, but can't they at least transfer McCarthy's plaque to the basement-level men's room?

This is not to say that McCarthyana is not without value. Witness this 1887 Old Judge card featuring him in a posed studio slide. As you can from its asking price, McCarthy' non-Hall-worthy credentials do not detract from the perceived value of his the goods that bear his image. (Of course we have to wonder that if the insane voters of 1946 hadn't put him in Cooperstown, would the card be worth as much?)

Mccarthy_medium

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