Tuesday, July 12, 2011

List of Greatness - Honorary Members

I'm going to try something a little bit new with the List of Greatness here. I'm starting to feel like the guys who have been in the top five for, oh, a couple decades now but keep getting jumped should have some kind of recognition. So here's my plan: I'm going to take a look at how everyone finished for every year since 1956. If a player finishes in the Top 10 ten times, he gets in the list as an "Honorary Member." Same if he finishes Top 9 nine times, Top 8 eight times, etc. (I'd also kind of like to come up with a better term than Honorary Member, since that kind of makes it sound like they didn't quite earn it, even though they definitely did. But Honorary is the best thing I can think of right now.) However, I still want to try and make sure the List is a fairly exclusive club, so, once somebody becomes an Honorary Member, they are still eligible to receive the yearly recognition. Jerry Lucas a perfect example of what I mean. Here's how his top ten finishes looked:

1968 - 7th
1969 - 5th
1970 - 4th
1971 - 3rd
1972 - 2nd
1973 - 2nd
1974 - 1st

So, Lucas would have become an Honorary Member in 1973, for finishing 2nd twice (also Top 3 three times, Top 4 four times, and Top 5 five times). But in 1974, he became that year's inductee for finishing first. By keeping Honorary Members still eligible for the yearly induction, I'm hoping it will still keep the Top 10 fairly exclusive, and therefore keep the List in general fairly exclusive. If we end up with a ratio of one Honorary Member every five years or so, I'll be happy with that.

So here's the list of guys for Honorary Inductees through 1974.
Max Zaslofsky - five Top 5 as of 1960
Larry Foust - five Top 5 as of 1960
Joe Fulks - eight Top 8 as of 1963
George Yardley - five Top 5 as of 1963
Cliff Hagan - four Top 4 as of 1964

And two other Honorary Members got inducted as Annual Members later on:
Slater Martin - Honorary in 1959, Annual for 1961
Jerry Lucas - Honorary in 1973, Annual for 1974

So let me know what you guys think. Is this a good idea? Does it make the List too cluttered? I'm definitely going to see how it'll play out down the line and if it ends up causing a huge surplus of players I'll have to change the criteria or do away with it altogether.


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  2. Perfect idea!!!!! :) Now the guys that are JUST out, but undeniably great are in this! Fulks and Hagan make it.....

    Can't think of a better name though....