on April 9, 1998
Despite Ted Williams' personal choice of Babe Ruth as the greatest hitter of all time, followed by Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, and Rogers Hornsby, this reviewer will never be convinced that Williams is anything but the greatest himself. Although I agree with the placement of almost all of his picks, though I do question Chuck Klein's inclusion in this list instead of such notables as Napoleon Lajoie and Honus Wagner, Williams falls short in making the argument that baseball must be looked on as a continuum so that all statistics should be looked at as comparable. With this argument, the gaudy averages and totals of the mid and late 1920s and 1930s will always come out on top, and, hence, Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx, and Hornsby will too. Al Simmons will also be given a ranking. With due respect to these players, who do deserve their reputations as all-time greats, in my opinion, league dominance should be rated more highly than sheer numbers. With this rating, players like Wagner and Lajoie would hold a greater chance of making this list, despite poor power numbers in comparison to later-day players. Other than this problem with his argument, fans of baseball and baseball statistics should be able to relax and enjoy Williams' _Hit List_ before adding it to their arsenal in the on-going battle of who was the greatest hitter ever.
Ted's pick of the Babe as the Top all time Hitter is right on the mark. However, Joe Jackson in the Top 10 seems a stretch, and Ted seems to overlook many of the more modern players, after his time. Still, the writing is fine, witty, and humorous, and it's hard to dispute the man who is probably the #2 hitter of them all, (after the Babe). A great book , and amusing as well!...PS- Ted modestly does not include himself!
on November 29, 2012
No one knew more about hitting baseballs than Ted Williams, and he was a great judge of many of the other great hitters in the sport. There are other similar books out there but I doubt that there was anyone more qualified to write so expertly on this subject. You may have some disagreement about the exact order he placed these men in, and he didn't put himself on the list! But this is a must read for anyone who loves baseball and the great players.