We propose a rank-based statistical procedure for comparing performances of top major league baseball players who performed in different eras. The model is based on using the player ranks from voting results for the most valuable player awards in the American and National Leagues. The current voting procedure has remained the same since 1932, so the analysis regards only data for players whose career blossomed after that time. Because the analysis is based on quantiles, its basis is nonparametric and relies on a simple link function. Results are stratified by fielding position, and we compare 73 Hall of Fame players up to 2010. We also consider the players on the 2011 Hall of Fame ballot as well as other potential Hall of Fame candidates. The analysis is based on the method of maximum likelihood, and results are illustrated graphically.

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Copyright © 2011 Walter de Gruyter. This article first appeared in Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports 7, no. 3 (July 2011): 19. doi:10.2202/1559-0410.1337.

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