With a modern understanding of defensive value and positional importance, Joe Torre would have won the 1961 Rookie of the Year award. That’s not taking anything away from the great Billy Williams who had a splendid season of his own. It’s just that Torre was better.
Speaking of Torre, does putting him in the Hall of Fame as a manager excuse the failure of the voters and various veteran committees from putting him in as a player? I don’t think it does.