While doing some archival research, I found an old thread from 2005 that I thought would be worth a re-visit here during the slack winter period. I'll start off with my post in that thread, which I don't remember writing and may have a difficult time defending since I haven't really done much baseball work in the past decade, but we'll give it a shot ... Jul 06, 2005 #97 1. Babe Ruth. Nobody ever has, or ever will have, as much single impact on the game of baseball as Ruth. 2. Ty Cobb. To a very large extent, baseball had become a boring game by the time Cobb broke into baseball. Although there were a handfull of great hitters in the game at the turn of the century, it was very much a station-to-station game, with bunting and hit-and-run tactics employed to manufacture runs. Cobb, with all his fire and nasty competitiveness, restored offensive aggressiveness to a game in sore need of it. 3. John McGraw. As a player, he was pretty much done by the time the 20th Century came around, but his true legacy was as a manager. Indeed, he was the primary exponent of the boring game I alluded to in the preceding paragraph, but his tactics were ever-adaptive. He was a dinosaur in many ways, the bridge between what was good baseball in the 19th Century and what he needed to do to win in the 20th Century. No manager ever had as much impact on the game. 4. Casey Stengel. He was a pretty fair player, but he was the most innovative manager in the history of the game. He revolutionized the way pitchers were used, and he used the platoon better than any other manager ever. 5. Jackie Robinson. Not just because of what he signified and went through, but because he was a revolutionary player in his own right. He helped bring some excitement back to a game that had gotten monotonous with the long ball. 6. Rube Waddell. He didn't invent the fastball, but he was the first modern pitcher who had great success with it. His strikeout rates were incredible for his day. 7. Mel Harder. An excellent pitcher in his own right, he was he first great pitching coach. He molded the great Indians staffs of the 1950's, making Wynn and Lemon HOFers. 8. Bob Gibson. Gibson was the first great black pitcher, and perhaps the most dominant pitcher of all-time. 9. Robin Yount. He didn't invent weight training, but he showed that increased strength could be used successfully at the skill positions. For better or worse, he ushered in the juiced era, even though he never used them himself. 10. Frank Robinson. A great player, certainly a peer of the more celebrated Mays, Mantle and Aaron. He was the first black manager and, recently, the first great black manager.