The Test: Framing the Hall of Fame Debate

THE ARGUMENT

It’s our national pastime.

Baseball was being called “The National Pastime” before the Civil War, but I’m not talking about baseball. I’m talking about arguing. Arguing is the national pastime – and arguing about baseball is as American as apple pie. Baseball arguments combine the best features of our oldest spectator sport (baseball) with our oldest participation sport (arging).

We will will argue about anything. Flip a coin and call it;  the chances are 50-50 you’ll argue with the result. Is it going to rain today? Ask two people and you’ll get two answers, even on a cloudless day. Google “which Olsen Twin is hotter” and you’ll generate over 1,500 hits. Ginger or Mary Ann? Peanut butter or chocolate? Are you a little bit country, or a little bit rock-n-roll? I may be dating myself with my pop culture references, but you get my point.

Arguing has been around forever. What is Hamlet’s soliloquy but a man engaged in an impassioned debate with himself? Julius Caesar’s debate partners disagreed with a whole lot of sharpened steel. Original sin may have been the first debate. Good? Evil? Let’s discuss. Want an apple?

County fairs are arguing conventions. Which tomato is the reddest? Which pie is the sweetest? Which snorting side of bacon has the shiniest coat? Are the games rigged? Which ride is the scariest? Does the whole elephant taste like that? Would you rather have the plastic key chain or the little rubber ball?

One argument leads to another. We’ll argue about the relative merits of a plastic key ring versus a rubber ball – combined value 3 cents – and forget the 40 bucks we blew,  tossing 4-inch rings at a 5-inch spike to win a 75-cent stuffed giraffe

We argue about everything, whether we understand it or not. I don’t know what cereal brands are popular in Uzbekistan – I don’t even know if they eat cereal in Uzbekistan –but show me two boxes and don’t even tell me what’s inside. I’ll choose one anyway. If you don’t believe me, watch an episode of “Let’s make a Deal.”

We’ll argue about anything, but there are three arguments that rise above the fray. These three overarching arguments have become national Arguments; politics, religion, and sports. We all have an opinion, whether we know anything or not

Why do I love to debate about baseball? Why do I love to debate over the contents of some dusty old museum about baseball? I’m not alone; there are millions of people who love to debate about baseball’s Hall of Fame.

Why do otherwise normal human beings, who really should have better things to do, care so much about baseball’s Hall of Fame? It’s just a list of names. Why do sports news outlets waste so much space on baseball’s Hall of Fame? It’s only in the news a couple of times a year. Why are so many people still yelling about Pete Rose not getting into baseball’s Hall of Fame? He hasn’t played a game in over 30 years. Why do they care?

Why do I care?

To answer that, I need to explain a couple of things. First, I need to explain what I mean when I say baseball’s Hall of Fame, or “the Hall.” Second, I need to explain how all the little Hall of Fame debates around the country melded together and became one great national debate – a never-ending, unsolvable debate at that. Finally, once I have convinced you beyond a shadow of a doubt that there are no final answers – that the Hall of Fame’s Great Debate can never be settled – I’ll present you with a template you can use to settle it.

I’m just kidding; it really can’t be settled. Frankly, I don’t think it should be settled, but I designed a template that you can use to carve out and organize your section of the greater Debate. My template – grandiosely named “The Test” – shapes and frames the Great Hall of Fame Debate into a simple, logical format with a common language. The Test won’t definitively solve anything – nobody “solves” music, either – but it’s more fun to play a song together if our instruments are in the same key.

We are getting ahead of ourselves, though. Before we can organize the Debate, we need to know what all the fuss is about.

***

Cooperstown Village sleeps at the end of a two-lane road, nestled comfortably within the boundaries of Otsego County in upstate New York. The village lies partially in the town of Otsego, partially in the town of Middlefield. Otsego and Middlefield combined have a population of just over 6,000 people. Cooperstown village is home to a hair under 2,000.

The village, founded by the family of 19th century author James Fenimore Cooper, has long been known for its historical attractions. The Clark family – half-owners of the Singer sewing machine patent – established a family foundation in Cooperstown shortly after the end of the Civil War. The Clarks built most of the village’s attractions.

Cooperstown was home to Civil War general Abner Doubleday, who reportedly fired the first shot in defense of Fort Sumter and played a prominent role in the battle of Gettysburg. It was believed for several decades that Doubleday invented baseball in a Cooperstown cow pasture in 1839. The myth was later debunked, but the Clark family opened the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in 1939 as part of a centennial salute to Doubleday’s invention.

The Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is home to the Hall of Fame library, research center, gift shop and theater. It is home to dozens of rooms full of baseball artifacts and memorabilia. And it is home to baseball’s Hall of Fame.

It can be confusing, keeping baseball’s Hall of Fame and the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum straight. It might be easiest to think of them as “the Hall” and “the museum.” Baseball’s Hall of Fame is a roll call, a list of names. The Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is the brick-and-mortar home of a gallery, built to honor and exhibit baseball’s Hall of Fame. Nearly 300,000 visitors a year come to see the exhibits, because they care about the list.

Why do they care so much about a list?

The United States Constitution is a list, a list of rules – and one apparently so boring that most of the millions of people who purchase and devour novels like “50 Shades of Gray” and “The Scarsdale Diet” have never taken the time to read it. Having never read the Constitution doesn’t keep us from arguing about it, though. Like I said, we will debate anything – and American politics debates center on the Constitution like Christianity centers on the Bible.

We love to argue about who should be on the list. We quibble over who gets in now, and who gets in later. We argue about how long the list should be. We fight about how the list should be sorted. Every argument, every debate, every fight about baseball’s Hall of Fame is part of one gigantic Debate.

The Hall of Fame Debate sprang into existence in 1939, about 15 minutes after the Hall of Fame list came into existence, and it has been resonating off the walls of barrooms, libraries, restaurants, construction sites, offices, convention halls and living rooms ever since. Where baseball fans meet, the Debate lives.

Here is an example:

“Hey, did you hear? The Veterans Committee just elected Joe Shlabotnik* to the Hall of Fame!”

“The Hall is meaningless now, man. They’ll let anybody in.”

“Are you kidding? It’s harder than ever to get in. Look at Harold Baines – 2,866 hits, 384 homers and he hardly got a vote. What about Rusty Staub? La Grande Orange got almost 3,000 hits, too, and he was a hero in the 1973 World Series for the Mets, and they laughed at him, too. Tommy John? They named a freakin’ surgery after him. He won 288 games, played for 27 years, and he’s still not in.”

“The Hall of Fame ain’t for the good players like those guys, it’s for the great players. Willie Mays, Babe Ruth, Stan the Man – those guys. You put Rusty Staub in with the Babe, all you are doing is insulting the Babe.”

“So there should be what – ten players in the Hall of Fame?”

“Naw, maybe a hundred. We can elect guys like Harmon Killebrew and Gaylord Perry, guys who hit over 500 homeruns or won 300 games, but Don Drysdale? He only won 209 games. He shouldn’t be in.”

“So we should kick him out?”

“Well, I dunno about that … maybe they should have two rooms. They can put the Babe and Willie Mays in a fancy room, guys like Drysdale and Tony Perez in another one, not so fancy.”

“What about the guys who got elected by the Veterans Committees? Some of those guys were bad picks. George Kelly, Freddy Lindstrom … maybe we need three rooms.”

“Maybe … how many should be in the main room? Should Stan the Man be in the same room with Killebrew? Musial hit .331, Killer only .256. And we haven’t even gotten to Ty Cobb. Cobb’s batting average was over a hundred points higher than Killer’s. They can’t be in the same room.”

“Fair enough, but do we put Killer in with Drysdale? He hit 573 homeruns and Major League Baseball modeled their logo after him.”

“Yeah, if he’s good enough for MLB’s logo, he shouldn’t be in the cattle car. Maybe we need four rooms.”

* – Joe Shlabotnik, Charlie Brown’s favorite player, is not in the Hall of Fame. Not yet, anyway.

***

Individual debates like this one are united into one, overarching Debate by a pair of basic questions:

In or out?

Big or small?

The in or out argument invariably flares into the argument about big or small. The small Hall advocates – the exclusivists – want the Hall of Fame to be limited to the greats of the game. They think the Hall of Fame is supposed to be for guys like Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle, but they are usually willing to erode the standards enough to include players like Harmon Killebrew and Gaylord Perry. They aren’t happy about it, though.

The other side of the argument comes from the big-Hall advocates – the inclusivists – who want everyone to get in. Where the exclusivists want a modest little cocktail party, with Norah Jones whispering her way through her latest album at the piano bar, the inclusivists want a luau of a Hall-a-Palooza with six pigs in the ground, a keg of beer on every table and a Jimmy Buffet tribute band blaring from the main stage.

Like religion and politics, everybody picks a side of the argument and sticks to it. The inclusivists want Harold Baines and his 2,866 hits in. The exclusivists want Pud Galvin’s 361 wins out because he only led the league in ERA once and he threw underhand. Inclusivists love Willie McGee; exclusivists laugh at Willie McGee. Inclusivists see the Hall of Fame as a big tent. The exclusivists see the Hall as a secluded tower.

It seems impossible to satisfy everyone. The exclusivists are in a permanent state of depression because the old-timers committee elected Tommy McCarthy and Roger Bresnahan in 1946. I’m not making that up; it’s been 70 years, but the curtains are still drawn and they keep replacing the candles. The inclusivists, on the other hand, want to replace the voters with rubber stamps and load them into cattle cars because the place isn’t filling up fast enough.

To satisfy everyone, the Hall of Fame needs to be small yet large, full of famous yet underrated players held to demanding yet forgiving standards. The Hall can induct several players every year, as long as they don’t induct anyone. Neither side wants to give in.

***

“All those religions … Is it possible that I was searching them the wrong way? Could it be that every one of all religions is true?”

“Point to the shortest direction around the universe. It doesn’t matter where you point, it’s the shortest … and you’re pointing back at yourself.”  – Valentine Michael Smith, “Stranger in a Strange Land”

In a widely ridiculed act of accidental genius, the Clark Foundation trustees handed the human resources aspect of their Hall of Fame to the Baseball Writers Association of America without giving them specific parameters. They told the BBWAA to elect 10 original members, 5 from the 19th century and 5 from the 20th century, and hold periodic elections to populate the list. They added just two rules: a player should have played at least ten years, and at least 75 percent of an official BBWAA body should agree on his election.

I should emphasize the word “should.” In the 80 years since the BBWAA was given the authority to hold Hall of Fame elections, the Museum trustees have never told them who to elect. They have made periodic changes to control how many new members were elected at any one time, but they have never shown the slightest interest in who they were.

The confusion might seem annoying on the surface – countless writers, including Bill James, have put their kids through college complaining about it – but the ambiguous selection process is the Debate’s Golden Goose. The illogical, disorderly system is the magic potion that gives life to all the little Debates, turning them into the Debate. And perfecting the selection process would kill the Debate faster than you can say “computer dating.”

Barstool arguments about baseball are usually either “I sure wouldn’t have voted for that bozo” or “Those snooty fools didn’t vote for that hero?” Every fan knows what’s wrong, and how to fix it. If the Hall of Fame’s parameters were clearly defined, those conversations would never happen. There would be nothing to argue about.

Case in point … barstool pundits can argue about whether the Supreme Court would work better with seven members – or that the justices should have to take a shot every time somebody mentions Roe v. Wade – but those arguments never build up any steam because the Supreme Court has specific rules. It takes a lot of hubris to claim to know how to design the Supreme Court better than the Founding Fathers. The Hall, on the other hand, is a big herking mess that every drunk knows how to fix. And they don’t mind sharing, either.

The Ladies Professional Golf Association’s Hall of Fame eligibility process has a list of 27 criteria that need to be met before a player becomes eligible for a vote. The standards are so high that few players ever make the ballot, and every player who has made the ballot has been immediately voted in. There has never been a debate, let alone a Debate about the LPGA Hall of Fame. Even a hard-core debater would have trouble getting that argument off the ground.

Subjectivity is the very lifeblood of baseball’s Hall of Fame. Without subjectivity, the arguments end. Without the arguments, the Hall of Fame’s lofty pop culture status goes up in smoke faster than a lazy mosquito on a barbecue grill. Without its overly subjective, endlessly confusing, perpetually annoying lack of definition, and the Hall would just be a list. And the Cooperstown museum would be nothing more than a dusty, out of the way storage bin for the game’s discarded past.

The Hall’s voting protocol needs to be flawed; it needs the human element. The arguments bring life to what would otherwise be a staid, somnolent list of names. Besides, what if they are all correct? What if every baseball argument is a vital piece of the Debate? Baseball’s Hall of Fame is a subjective list, not a stone tablet. All the arguments can be correct, just like all of Valentine Michael Smith’s religions can be correct. What if the Debate is the thing? What if the Debate about the Hall of Fame is more important than the Hall of Fame itself?

If the Debate is the thing, then every argument becomes its own Hall of Fame. Make your own list; we have room for endless lists now. If you believe the Hall of Fame should be limited to 30 players, then your list will hold 30 players. If you think the Hall of Fame should include 1,000 players, then your list will hold 1,000 names. The Hall is whatever your side of the Debate wants it to be. It’s your Hall, your rules.

If you think Maury Wills was the greatest shortstop in history, put him at the top of your paper. If you think Ray Oyler was the greatest shortstop in history, you can – well, there are limits. But even if you aren’t always right, you always have the right to your opinion. I’m sure there can be a universe where Ray Oyler was the greatest shortstop ever.

Maybe in yours. Let’s go see how lists are made.

*** 

THE LINE

Every Hall of Fame list needs a line at the bottom, whether it’s drawn under the 30th name or the 300th name. Your bottom line will be defined by how you answer the in-or-out question for a pool of players large enough to represent a meaningful sample. Meaningful to who? Meaningful to you. It’s your Hall, your rules.

There are as many ways to make an in-or-out argument as your imagination can conjure up. Here are a few I like to use:

  1. He should be in because he had more hits than that preening schmo who got in last year.
  2. He should be in because he has a high WAR1 total.
  3. He should be out because he was never great.
  4. He should be out because nobody thought he was great.
  5. He should be in because he had one of the highest batting averages ever.
  6. He should be out because other players at his position are more qualified.
  7. He should be in because his type always gets in.
  8. He should be in because everybody knew who he was.
  9. He should be out because nobody remembers who he was.
  10. He should be in because the Hall of Fame would look silly without him.

Let’s mold those ten arguments into ten questions:

  1. The baseball card: Where does he rank on the counting stat lists?
  2. The number crunch: Where does he rank according to the popular analytics?
  3. Peak value: How good was he at his best?
  4. Established value: Where was he in the pecking order during his prime years?
  5. Rate value: Where does he rank in the percentage stats?
  6. Position value: Where does he rank at his position?
  7. Respect: How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  8. Prominence: How newsworthy was he?
  9. Impact: How will the history books treat him?
  10. Relevance: How would the Hall of Fame look without him?

If all the arguments are true, then theoretically a yes answer to any one of the questions means “in.” Conversely, if all the arguments are true, then theoretically a no answer to any one of the questions means “out.” I have a sneaking hunch this is how government works, but we don’t have to limit ourselves to a single yes or no question for every snowflake – or baseball card – that drops from the sky.

Should Harold Baines be in because he had 2,866 hits and 384 homeruns? Question one is designed to give long career compilers like Baines a chance. Should Bobby Grich be in because he has a really high WAR total? Question two gives him his due. Roger Maris? Questions three, seven and nine. Riggs Stephenson? Question five. Charlie Bennett? Questions eight and nine. Who is Charlie Bennett? Charlie Bennett was a 19th century catcher, known for his defensive wizardry, who lost his legs when he fell while trying to board a train. Bennett Park in Detroit (later Tiger Stadium) was the only major league stadium ever named for a player.

Is Bennett in the Hall of Fame? Nope. But he’s in mine.

***

Remember, the Debate is the bastard lovechild of these two questions:

  1. In or out?
  2. How big?

“In our out?” invites the innies in and puts the outies on a bus. To answer “how big?” I designed a multiple choice quiz to sort the innies into clubs. My theoretical Hall of Fame consists of four clubs and a bar. Let’s take a look.

***

The top floor will house a private “Pantheon club” of 30 original members, with one new member elected every few years. Downton Abbey’s wait staff will pour corked wine out of dusty bottles and serve hors d’ oeuvres, made out of snails and fish eggs, on crystal platters. The napkins will be silk, the chairs upholstered in aged leather.

The VIP club’s original 90 can add a new member every other year. Off-duty White House staffers will pour the best craft beers and serve seafood appetizers on the good China plates. The napkins will be linen, the chairs upholstered in crushed velvet.

The restaurant will seat the All-Star club’s 180 original members, with plenty of space to accommodate the one new member brought in each year. Retired flight attendants will pour capped wine and ice-cold light beer to wash down artichoke pizza bagels and deep fried zucchini, served on Martha Stewart commemorative plates. The napkins, like the chairs, will be made out of freshly bleached game-worn uniforms.

The cafeteria will have room for several hundred people, but they will only be allowed to add new members by permission of a special committee. Lunch ladies will serve meatloaf every Tuesday and new members have to bring boxed wine and do the dishes. Diners are encouraged to wear long sleeves and thick pants; the benches have exposed nails and somebody keeps stealing napkins from the bathroom stalls.

The rest of the candidates have to wait in the bar next to the lobby (there’s a 2-drink minimum) or stand in line outside, behind the velvet ropes. We encourage hopeful candidates to bring food for the doorman. It won’t help you get in, but he gets surly when his blood sugar tanks.

Once the place is built, we will need a way to sort the members into the appropriate clubs. After years of experimenting with tarot cards, tea leaves and Ouija boards (don’t ask) I settled on a modified scholastic system.

I designed my system with 6 grades. The A grades should follow Babe Ruth’s entourage to the Pantheon while the B grades are escorted to the VIP club. One of our trusty guides will lead the C grades to the All-Star club, and directions to the Old Timers Cafeteria are prominently posted in the lobby. The E grades can drink in the bar or loiter in the parking lot, but they have to stay behind the ropes.

The F grade stragglers, if they refuse to leave, will be chased off with a hose. Well, except for Ray Oyler. He can drink in the bar for free, as long as he helps clean up after last call.

***

Now that we know where they go, who are they? How do we tell them apart? What makes a grade A Hall of Famer an A, and a grade D Hall of Famer a D?

Welcome to the Test.

THE TEST

Like peanut butter and chocolate, the Test combines my in-or-out questions with my graded club system to create a product superior to the sum of its parts. The ten-question, multiple-choice Test will spit out what you really think in the form of a scholastic grade-point average.

The Test is designed to separate the men from the boys, but it also gives the boys a chance to play. The greats of the game compete for the A and B grades while the more rank and file stars compete for the C and D grades and jostle for position in the Hall candidate pecking order. The Test will help you define your in-or-out line, but it won’t make you live on one side of the line like most in-or-out debates do, continually rehashing the merits of the -outs while the –ins rot in obscurity.

You can use the Test to analyze everyone from the Babe to the peanut vender, giving each his due without denying others theirs. The system is designed to have both vertical and horizontal integrity, so if you wind up careening into the Test-ational woods it’s fairly easy to figure out where you lost your bearings.

The Test works vertically for individual players and horizontally for groups, generating a grade point average for each player and collating groups on each question into the proper numbers for the respective grades. I use a specific set of numbers that you will see next to the grades in my template, but you can use your own. Just replace my numbers with yours.

The Test works on a grading curve. Baseball itself is one giant curved grading system, if you think about it. There is one champion every year, and teams are sorted from top to bottom. The top half of each subset, whether it’s a league or a division, is called the first division. And last place is always last place.

Let’s see how the grading works before we go over the rules and tackle the questions:

THE GRADES

  1. A. One of the top 30 players ever. He was a winner. He was the best of the best. He was the MVP favorite every spring, and either the MVP or the guy who got shafted in the MVP voting every fall. He lasted long enough to rank near the top of the cumulative lists, and his rate stats were as impressive as his counting stats. He reached the top of the game and he stayed there for years.

He was a household name and the face of the game. No history of baseball could be told without him. When he became eligible for the Hall of Fame he was voted in immediately by virtual acclimation, and the sports magazines were flooded with angry letters, demanding to know why some arrogant writer refused to vote for him. Baseball spits out a grade A player about once every five years.

  1. B. One of the top 90 players ever. The grade B grade player was king of the playground when there wasn’t a grade A player around. He was a grade A player, but with a weakness. He was the wise guy pick to knock off the reigning grade A player (Frank Robinson), or he was a grade A player with a short career (Sandy Koufax), or he dominated a comparatively weak group of players (Hal Newhouser).

He wasn’t a household name, but he was universally known within the sporting world. The Hall of Fame voted him in quickly, usually within 2-3 years. Nobody would picket Cooperstown if he wasn’t elected right away, but there would be letters. Baseball spits out a grade B player every couple of years.

  1. C. One of the top 180 players ever. The grade C player might have been the star on a bad team, like Richie Ashburn with the 1950s Phillies, or just one of the guys on a great team, like Tony Perez with the Big Red Machine in the 1970s. A grade C player couldn’t win without help from at least one A or B player. A grade C player was a perennial all-star who could win an MVP in a career year, but not a consistent MVP contender.

He was a big name in the baseball universe, but anonymous elsewhere. The BBWAA voted him into the Hall of Fame, but it took a while. Grade C Hall of Fame bandwagons generally start out slowly, as the Debate splits on the merits of his case, and gain steam towards the end of the player’s eligibility.

  1. D. One of the top 400 players ever. The D players can be sorted into three groups: grade C producers who had really short careers, grade E producers who had really long careers, or star players with an obvious weakness. The grade D player might have never put up that one big year, or that one big second year to “prove” the first one. His career might have been interrupted by a rash of injuries, or truncated by substance abuse issues. He might have been a grade C offensive player but a terrible defender, or a tremendous defender but a god-awful hitter.

A grade D player would have been known to the hometown fans, hard-core fans and fantasy baseball fans. Baseball spit out about one grade D player per year before expansion, or about one per 16 teams. With 30 teams, the number is up to about two per year.

The E players are the rest of the regular players. If a player survived for ten years and played regularly for five years he was an E player. A total of 741 pitchers have thrown at least 1,500 innings and 1,548 position players have played at least 1,000 games since the National Association opened for business in 1871.

According to the Baseball-Reference database, 16,982 players have gotten into a major league baseball game. Out of that pool 2,579 position players played at least 600 games, 958 starting pitchers took the ball for at least 125 games and 796 relief pitchers got into at least 250 games. That’s 4,331 out of 16,982, a little over 25 percent. If a player manages to get onto a major league field – make it to the show – he has about a one in four chance of establishing himself as a regular player.

THE RULES

Before we go over the individual questions, I need to explain the grading rules:

  • Rule one: It’s your Test, your rules.
  • Rule two: There is no second rule.

If you think Willie McGee was better than Willie McCovey, mark it down. If you think Roger Maris was more famous than Stan Musial, grade accordingly. If you are absolutely convinced that Ray Oyler was a better hitter than Ted Williams, knock yourself out. It’s your Test, your rules.

You may be thinking to yourself, “but what’s the point in that?” Call it step one in the process. Give all your favorite players A’s, give all your sworn enemies F’s, and get it out of your system. Share your results with your friends and have a good laugh. It’s your Test, your rules. There are no wrong answers in love and the Test.

Are you ready to take your opinions to the Debate stage? Not so fast, Batman. There is, of course, a catch.

An opinion, in and of itself, ain’t worth the air your lungs gave up to push it past your teeth. You can say Eleanor Roosevelt was a beauty queen, but sooner or later somebody is going to produce a picture. You can claim the Pittsburgh Steelers won the 1936 World Series, but it only takes a couple of mouse clicks to make you look foolish. You can claim Abner Doubleday invented baseball, but even gum salesmen aren’t buying that one any more.

Courtrooms feed on evidence, not opinion, and an opinion without supporting evidence is as worthless in the bar as it is in the courtroom. Your argument will be as toothless as a band saw in a blast furnace.

If your opinions are too far from reality they will be worthless in a serious Debate – Test or no Test – but the Test can mold and refine your opinions into strong, defensible stances. The Test can’t tell you if Willie Mays was better than Mickey Mantle any more than a systematic grading system for music can tell you if Beethoven was better than Bon Jovi, or a feminine allure scale can tell you if Raquel Welch was hotter than Kate Upton. But it will tell you if you think Willie Mays was better than Mickey Mantle, and by how much.

Let’s take a look at the questions.

THE QUESTIONS

  1. Baseball Card – Where do his career totals put him?
  2. In the Top 25
    b. In the top 75
    c. In the top 150
    d. In the top 300
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. In the Navy

“Roger “Doc” Cramer played for 20 seasons … and had 2,705 lifetime hits. If he doesn’t belong in the Hall of Fame, I don’t know who does!” – Scott Lehman, Delta, Ohio in a letter to Baseball Digest, March 1981, published in The Politics of Glory.

I try to look at everything and grade the players on a balance of statistical evidence. Some players rank about the same in everything, but you have to strike a balance for the rest.

Doc Cramer ranks 67 in hits, 105 in runs scored and in the top 200 in doubles and triples. Most outsider arguments (“my guy should be in because”) focus on the player’s best feature. If a player has one attractive statistic, that’s the one that gets perfumed, buffed and presented in a low cut dress.

If the rest of Cramer’s statistical profile was as good as his hit total, he would have been put on the list decades ago. And if Phyllis Diller could sing she wouldn’t have owned so many ugly hats.

  1. Baseball Reference – According to the metrics, where is he?

In the Top 25

  1. In the top 75
  2. In the top 150
  3. In the top 300
  4. In the top 1,000
  5. Standing next to Waldo

“Bobby Grich’s 125 OPS+ (OBP+SLG adjusted to his era and ballpark) is higher than eight second basemen who have plaques in Cooperstown.” – Dan Holmes, 10 most deserving players who are not in the Hall of Fame

“In a career that spanned from 1970-86, Grich compiled a 70.9 Wins above Replacement score — per Baseball-Reference — that ranks eighth all time at his position. His .371 on-base percentage is higher than 12 other Hall of Fame second basemen. And his OPS-plus of 125, a stat that adjusts for league and park effects, is better than 15 second basemen in Cooperstown.” – MLB.com

There are people, especially in the SABRmetric crowd (SABR is the Society of American Baseball Research, baseball’s Comic-Con) crowd, who think question two is the only question that matters.

“For a whole generation of fans and fantasy players, stats have begun to outstrip story and that seems to me a sad thing. Even the unverifiable hogwash that passed for fact or informed opinion in baseball circles not so long ago seems today wistfully enticing, for its energy if nothing else.” – John Thorn

  1. Peak – At his best, he was
  2. The best of the best
  3. The best, other than that one guy who ruined the curve
  4. One of the best for a while
  5. One of the best for a moment
  6. One of the best of the rest
  7. One of the rest

“He was Ty Cobb, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Albert Pujols all wrapped into a solid 5’11”, 185 lb. frame.” About Pete Reiser, by Joseph Del Grippo, POG

Peak value is a slippery concept that often provokes good, lively debates. Why ruin the fun by defining it?

Pete Reiser was a truly great player, but for a moment so short that he could be reasonably given any grade. There has to be some minimum length requirement, though, or the greatest player in history was Jon Paciorek*.

*- Jon Paciorek retired with 3 hits in 3 atbats, the only player with as many as 3 atbats who did not make an out. His brother Tom played 18 seasons, retiring with a .282 career batting average in 4,121 atbats. What a schlump.

  1. Prime – Pick one:
  2. He should have won the MVP award in every good year
  3. He could have won the MVP award in every good year
  4. He should have been an all-star in every good year
  5. He could have been an all-star in every good year
  6. He could have been an all-star in a career year
  7. He could have saved a ton of money on his car insurance

Until Barry Bonds nobody had won more than three MVP awards, and until Roger Clemens no pitcher had won more than four Cy Young awards. The writers don’t like to vote for the same player every year.

The first MVP award wasn’t invented until 1911, and it wasn’t a permanent part of the game until 1931. Several players who might have won several MVP awards either played when there weren’t MVP awards or weren’t eligible because the rules at the time excluded them.

The first MVP award, called the Chalmers award after the automaker and given out from 1911-1914, could only be won once. The League award, given out by the American League in the 1920s, could only be won once and could not be won by a player who was also a manager.

Honus Wagner was 37 years old when the first MVP vote was held. Babe Ruth, who won the League award in 1923, wasn’t eligible again until 1931, when he was 36 years old.

Ty Cobb, whose bitter, controversial battle with Napoleon Lajoie for the 1910 batting title led Chalmers to create the first MVP award, won in 1911 – the only year he was eligible until he was past 40 years old. Cap Anson, whose career ended in 1897, was never eligible for an MVP award.

  1. Rate – Ignoring volume, he is
  2. In the Top 25
  3. In the top 75
  4. In the top 150
  5. In the top 300
  6. In the top 1,000
  7. Alarmingly concave

The fifth question helps counterbalance the first question. By rate I mean the slash statistics: batting average, onbase percentage and slugging. Babe Ruth “slashed” .342-.474-.690 over his 22-year career. He ranks, respectively, tenth, second and first on the career lists. For contrast, Ray Oyler slashed .175-.258-.251 in his 6-year career. He ranks lower than Babe Ruth on the career lists. Ruth isn’t the only pitcher who ranks ahead of Oyler.

  1. Position – He was in (or on) his position’s
  2. Throne
  3. Mt. Rushmore
  4. Sweet 16
  5. American Top 40
  6. Hot 100
  7. Do not resuscitate list

“Bid McPhee qualifies for Cooperstown ad nauseam. In just about everyone one of his eighteen years before 1900, he ranked as the best second baseman around. – Bob Carroll, “For the Hall of Fame: Twelve Good Men” – The National Pastime, Winter 1985 (POG)

There are any number of ways you can to sort the candidates by position. You can use one of the various forms of WAR, the career methods from question one, or you can invent your own. You can lean on Pete Palmer’s linear weights formulas or you can lean on the positional top 100 rankings published in The New Bill James Historical Abstract in 2001.

You can rank them by shoe size, or you can rank them by salary adjusted to the stock market index. Rank them phonetically, genetically, frenetically – whatever suits you. Repeat after me: It’s your Test, your rules.

Be prepared for a little blowback, though. Your friends might not consider shoe size an official statistic.

  1. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  2. They voted him in immediately by acclimation
  3. They elected him within 2-3 years
  4. The BBWAA elected him
  5. An old-timers committee elected him
  6. He got at least one vote from somebody
  7. Like a fool, mean and cruel

If you are grading an old timer you can just use his own Hall of Fame voting history. If a player hasn’t been on the ballot yet, or has only been on it a short time, you need to find a comparable player (comp) to argue his case.

Be careful, though. Baseball Reference lists Sammy Sosa as Mike Schmidt’s second closest comp. Their raw numbers might be similar, but they weren’t comparable players. Sosa was a right fielder. Schmidt was a third baseman. Sosa never won a gold glove award. Schmidt won 10. Sosa hit at least 60 homeruns three times without leading the league, while Schmidt won eight homerun titles, seven of them with less than 40 homeruns.

  1. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?
  2. Throw out his garbage
  3. Throw out a runner
  4. Throw out his back
  5. Throw out his wife
  6. Throw out his probation officer
  7. Throw out a Kardashian

I designed the Test with the more objective questions towards the top and the more subjective questions toward the bottom for a reason. By the time you get to question eight you will have a pretty good idea where you think the player ranks. If you think he was more (or less) famous than his stats indicate, you can make an adjustment. If not, you can simply match his fame grade to his body of accomplishments. There is no reason to overthink it.

The most famous players have regular beat writers following them around, shooting pictures of their cars as they drive away, and in extreme cases sorting through their garbage.

The B players don’t get that much attention, but they are usually the first locker the writers stop by after the day’s game. The D players will get their share of postgame attention from the beat writers, but the C players will get into the magazines far more often.

  1. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?
  2. A chapter
  3. A chapter section
  4. A page
  5. A paragraph
  6. A sentence
  7. A bribe

The eighth question asks if a player was famous. The ninth question asks if the player was memorable. Most players leave some sort of mark on the game, something to remember them by. For most it’s just a smudge – maybe a key hit in a pennant race or a running catch to cost some unfortunate soul a batting title – but a viable Hall of Fame contender will have left big sloppy footprints all over the game’s carpet.

  1. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

a- Pointless

b- Deluded

c- Exclusive

d- Behind

e- Discerning

f- Closed

Again, don’t overthink it. If museum visitors take selfies in front of his plaque, he’s an A grade. If he’s one of the guys whose name always comes up during the in-or-out section of the Debate, he’s a D grade. You can probably tell the B’s from the C’s once you sift out the A’s and the D’s.

Once you grade a player on all ten questions, simply divide by ten and that’s his grade point average.

Technically, anyone who receives even a single D grade is a Hall of Fame candidate. I added the F grade as insurance against the occasional clubhouse lawyer who might want to take advantage of the Test’s good nature. If a player gets a D and no F’s, he’s a viable Hall candidate. If, however, he has an F on one of the questions, he’ll need to make up for it elsewhere. This keeps Jon Paciorek and his career 1.000 batting average out of the bar.

PITCHER TEST DIFFERENCES

The position player Test and the pitcher Test use the same basic template, but there are a couple of minor differences that need to be addressed.

The pitcher-to-hitter (position player) Hall of Fame ratio is roughly 3-8 – three pitchers for every eight position players – a handy ratio because there are eight position players on one full team. This means for every Hall of Fame “team” there should be roughly three pitchers. The hitter template, for example, has 25 A grades while the pitcher template has 10 a grades.

I’ll explain it all in a table to show my work. The rounded numbers are the ones I used for the Test template. Major League baseball is about to begin its 147th season; I rounded up to 150 to make the math a little easier to follow. Here is the ABCD logic again, for reference:

A – One every five years (30)

B – One every other year (75)

C – One every year (150)

D – Two every year (300)

E – You can hang out in the lobby (Don’t touch anything)

Grading Table.

Grade Hitters

(exact)

Pitchers

(exact)

Total

(exact)

Hitters

Rounded

Pitchers

Rounded

Total

Rounded

A 22 8 30 25 10 35
B 54 21 75 75 30 105
C 109 41 150 150 60 210
D 218 82 300 250 100 350
E 727 273 1000 750 300 1050

 

I should explain why I rounded up so much. Unless you are the type who would be willing to slam the gruel-pot lid down on Oliver Twist’s bony little fingers when he’s two minutes late to dinner, your curve is going to get stretched. Having a hefty fudge factor built in allows you do draw your lines ruthlessly, without feeling like you left an empty seat on the last chopper out of Saigon.

The sixth question on the pitcher Test is different from the hitter Test. The sixth question on the hitter Test, the position question, doesn’t make sense for pitchers. They are all pitchers. The black and gray ink question provides pitchers one more layer of context-adjusted analysis, something that isn’t always easy to incorporate into the pitcher’s records across eras, and the fact that they are pitchers makes it a fair question.

Now that we have an idea how the system works, let’s run a few players through the Test.

THE BETA TEST

Let’s meet our guinea pigs:

Adrian “Cap” Anson began his career with the birth of the National Association in 1871, and played through 1897. He was a controversial force of baseball nature who played so long ago that the statistics are almost as fuzzy as the memories. His Test will help us conjure up a mental picture of 19th century baseball.

Pete Rose played more games and came to the plate more times than any other player in the game’s history, so he’ll dominate the counting-stat questions. His Test will help us see how cumulative and rate stats interact.

Willie McGee was a good player for a long time, but he was never considered a great one. His Test will help us find the line at the bottom of the D grade.

Chuck Klein’s short, dynamic career will provide the yin to Rose’s yang in the cumulative vs. rate stats debate. The Depression-era Phillies star put up spectacular numbers, won an MVP award and earned a triple crown during his years in the hitter-happy Baker Bowl, but he became an ordinary player after he left. His Test will give me a chance to address a few extreme statistical illusions.

Willie McCovey spent the first few years of his career competing with Orlando Cepeda for the Giants’ first base job, so I let’s Test both. Cepeda will help us define the line at the bottom of the C grade while McCovey explores the boundaries of the B grade.

  1. Where do his career milestone numbers put him?
  2. In the Top 25
    b. In the top 75
    c. In the top 150
    d. In the top 300
    e. In the top 600
    f. In the Navy

Table 1.

Category

Name

Plate

App.

Hits Home

Runs

Runs RBI Total

Bases

Walks Grade
Anson 28 7 877 9 4 48 123 A
Rose 1 1 456 9 4 8 14 A
McGee 246 166 1000+ 316 409 283 866 E
Klein 393 243 141 204 152 164 493 D
McCovey 105 183 20 164 44 71 34 B
Cepeda 182 136 71 224 87 95 517 C

 

The National Association teams played just 30 league games each in 1871, and Anson didn’t play in a league with a schedule of as many as 100 games until 1884, when he was 32 years old. He played 1,993 out of a possible 2,052 official league games during the first 22 years his career, riding to wooden, lightless stadiums in horse-drawn wagons where he caught hard grounders and screaming liners without a glove.

Cepeda’s counting stats show a clear bias toward the back end of the offensive equation where the sluggers reside, rather than the front end where the table setters live. He ranks comparatively low in runs scored, walks and times on base compared to homeruns, runs batted in and total bases.

Klein was nearly 24 when he first came to the majors and his bat was dead by the time he was 35, so his counting stats are a little light in the seat.

McCovey, blocked by Cepeda at first base when he came up with the Giants, couldn’t play anywhere else without looking like a crippled tree sloth waddling off with Charlie Brown’s mitt. The Giants tried him in the outfield for 275 games from 1962-64 so they could get both bats in the lineup, and he led the National League in homeruns in 1963, but he was so bad in the field that the Giants eventually threw up their hands, traded Cepeda away and planted McCovey at first base. He played 16 more seasons, but he never played another inning in the outfield.

  1. Baseball Reference – According to the metrics, where is he?
  2. In the Top 25
    b. In the top 75
    c. In the top 150
    d. In the top 300
    e. In the top 600
    f. Standing next to Waldo

Table 2.

Player WAR Winshares Grade
Anson 23 45(35) B
Rose 29 11(13) A
McGee 412 321* E
Klein 188 273* D
McCovey 52 34(27) B
Cepeda 163 123(73) C

* – estimated

I listed the two most prominent metrics in table 2. The first is wins above replacement, commonly known as WAR. I used the version published by Baseball-Reference.com. The second metric, Winshares, is the brainchild of Bill James. James published the formulas in The New Bill James Historical Abstract (Free Press 2001) and in Win Shares (STATS 2002).

  1. Peak – At his best, he was
  2. The best of the best
    b. The best, other than that guy who ruined the curve
    c. One of the best for a while
    d. One of the best for a moment
    e. One of the best of the rest
    f. One of the rest

Table 3.

Player Grade
Anson B
Rose B
McGee D
Klein C
McCovey B
Cepeda C

 

There were a couple of moments when Cepeda might have been the best player in the league, but they were fleeting and probably an illusion.

Klein’s huge peak numbers were largely an illusion. He batted .395 and slugged .705 in the Baker Bowl, .281 and .458 everywhere else. He was Babe Ruth at home, Babe Dahlgren on the road.

McCovey’s best historical comp might be Hank Greenberg, the Tiger star of the 1930s. Greenberg won a pair of MVP awards, hit 58 homeruns one season and set the American League single-season record for RBI in another, yet he was the third best first baseman in an eight team league, behind Lou Gehrig and Jimmy Foxx. Those A grades are hard to get.

I wasn’t thinking about it when I chose my Test subjects, but each won a single MVP award except Anson, who played before MVP awards existed.

  1. Prime – Pick one:
  2. He should have won the MVP award every good year
    b. He could have won the MVP award every good year
    c. He should have been an all-star every good year
    d. He could have been an all-star every good year
    e. He could have been an all-star in a career year
    f. He could have saved a ton of money on his car insurance

Table 4.

Player Grade
Anson B
Rose B
McGee E
Klein D
McCovey D
Cepeda D

 

One of the constant balancing acts in every Hall of Fame Debate is the weighing of quantity versus quality. Klein put up huge numbers for a very short time, then played at what appeared to be a much lower level for several years after. If we didn’t know better we might think something happened to him in 1934, but we know that wasn’t the case.

In Klein’s case there is a handy statistic that helps tell us the story of his prime: onbase plus slugging (ops+). Klein’s ops+ with the Phillies from 1928-34 was 160. He moved to the Cubs and Wrigley Field – another good hitters park – in 1934 and his ops+ numbers over the next few years were 136, 123, 124, 130 (back in the Baker Bowl), 81 and 127. Ignoring the off-season in 1938, Klein’s typical ops+ was in the mid-120s outside of the Baker Bowl.

Rate – Ignoring volume, he is:

In the Top 30

  1. In the top 90
  2. In the top 180
  3. In the top 400
  4. In the top 1,000
  5. Alarmingly concave

Table 5.

Player Ranks BA OBA SLG OPS+ Grade
Anson 24 83 442 62 B
Rose 175 215 888 422 E
McGee 293 1000+ 1000+ 1000+ E
Klein 50 182 32 97 C
McCovey 992 220 72 43 B
Cepeda 255 658 106 134 C

 

Ops+ is a useful statistic for players – like Anson – who played in statistical conditions out of whack with the rest of baseball history.

  1. Position Rank – He was in (or on) his position’s
  2. Throne
    b. Mt. Rushmore
    c. Sweet 16
    d. American Top 40
    e. Hot 100
    f. Do not resuscitate list

 

Table 6.

Player Position* James

Rank*

My

Rank

Grade
Anson First Base 11 4 B
Rose Right Field 5 5 C
McGee Center Field 43 53 E
Klein Right Field 40 46 E
McCovey First Base 9 11 C
Cepeda First Base 17 20 D

* – according to The New Bill James Historical Abstract

The latest edition of James’ Historical Abstract came out in 2001; the past 15 years are included in my rankings.

James ranked Anson 11 in his book and there have been a couple of new 10 players since 2001, but I moved him up to the fourth spot. There are three things James incorporated in his rankings that I don’t incorporate into mine.

First, James does not count the National Association as a major league. Second, James “charges” the players from the distant past with a timeline penalty. Third, James makes no allowances for the shorter 19th century schedules. I see no reason to penalize players for when they were born, and the National Association was more of a major league than the Union Association or the Federal League, both of which James does count.

Anson is the only player affected in our Beta Test, but there are dozens of star players from the 19th century who would be affected if we let 21st century sophistry throw dirt on their legacies. Baseball is baseball, and pennants fly forever.

My top 4 at first base:

  1. Lou Gehrig
  2. Albert Pujols
  3. Jimmy Foxx
  4. Cap Anson

James ranks Pete Rose in right field, but he could have ranked him at any of several positions. Rose played at least 500 games at first base, second base, third base, left field and right field.

  1. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  2. They voted him in right away, and somebody complained because he wasn’t unanimous
    b. They elected him within 2-3 years
    c. The BBWAA elected him
    d. An old-timers committee elected him
    e. He got at least one vote from somebody
    f. Like a fool, mean and cruel

Table 7.

Player Year

Elected

Wait

years

Comps

years

Grade
Anson 1939 42* 1-3 B
Rose N/A N/A 1 A
McGee N/A N/A N/A E
Klein 1980 35 20+ D
McCovey 1986 5 1-3 B
Cepeda 1999 25 15 D

 

Anson had been retired for nearly 40 years when the inaugural Veterans Committee election was held in 1936. He tied 19th century catching great Buck Ewing for the most votes with 39.5 out of 78 (50.6 percent), well short of the 75 percent needed to be elected.

The Hall’s centennial celebration in 1939 was set to go off without any 19th century players involved, so a small committee – Commissioner Kennesaw Landis, National League President Ford Frick and American League President Will Harridge – chose three players: Anson, Ewing and Charles “Old Hoss” Radbourne, a 300-game winner who will holds the major league record with his 59 wins in 1884.

Anson’s closest statistical comps are the high average hitters with 3000 hits, like Rod Carew and Tony Gwynn, though Anson would likely have been a power hitter had he played in another era. He was a huge man, though, and his skill set was probably more like Willie McCovey than Rod Carew. He was an unusual man, living and playing in unusual conditions.

Anson’s best comp, combining his playing record, his managing record and his longevity, might be Pete Rose. Rose is not eligible for the Hall of Fame because he is on baseball’s ineligible list. Had he been eligible and untainted by scandal, he would have been a near-unanimous selection.

The Hall of Fame rarely intervenes directly in the selection rules and they have never shown the slightest interest in who gets elected, but they made a point of telling the voters that Rose would not be eligible until he is reinstated to baseball’s eligible list. The hue and cry surrounding his candidacy, even 30 years later, tells you all you need to know.

Cepeda received 73.5 percent of the vote in 1994 – his final year of BBWAA eligibility – and was elected by the Veterans Committee ten years later. His closest historical comp is probably Tony Perez, the first baseman on the Big Red Machine. Perez was elected by the BBWAA in his final year of eligibility. The BBWAA drew a line between Perez and Cepeda – the C/D line.

McGee isn’t in the Hall of Fame and none of his good comps are in, but his case isn’t hopeless. He won two batting titles, three gold glove awards and an MVP. He was part of a famous team – the 1980s Cardinals, who reached the World Series three times between 1982 and 1987 – and he played long enough to reach a few milestone numbers, including 2,000 hits and 300 stolen bases.

  1. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?
  2. Throw out his garbage
    b. Throw out a runner
    c. Throw out his wife
    d. Throw out his back
    e. Throw out his probation officer
    f. Throw out a Kardashian

Table 8.

Player Grade
Anson A
Rose A
McGee D
Klein C
McCovey C
Cepeda C

 

Anson was the face of baseball between 1880 and the 1895. He was a force of nature, dominating everyone and everything he touched, and he was a natural and enthusiastic showman. He began his career as “The Marshalltown Infant” in 1871, grew into “Cap” – for captain, managers were called captain in the early days – and eventually morphed into “Pop” near the end of his 27-year career. The Chicago team in the National League was nicknamed the Cubs because of Anson. He was Pops; they were his cubs.

The Cubs, as you may have heard unless you were somewhere in the Congo, won the 2016 World Series. Anson was in attendance the last time they had won, in 1908.

Cepeda and McCovey were practically a matched set with the Giants, and they both won an MVP award after they were separated. While they were active they were about equally famous, but in different ways.

McCovey was beloved as the Gentle Giant, a human manta ray with a permanent smile pasted on his comically wide, pleasantly round face. He was a frightening hitter, a long, lanky lefty who hit line drives that screamed so loud they almost drowned out the screaming infielders. He was as graceful as a ballerina with a bat in his hands, but chronically bad feet made it painful to watch him run.

Cepeda was built like a fire plug, and by the end of career his butt was wide enough to advertise on. He was a notoriously bad sign reader. His manager in San Francisco, Alvin Dark, developed a racist reputation among Latino players because of his exasperation with Cepeda’s sign-reading adventures. With the Cardinals, where Cepeda won his MVP award, he built a reputation as a cheerful eccentric.

Their post-career fortunes diverged, then converged. San Francisco’s Pac Bell Park named the cove behind the right field wall “McCovey Cove.” McCovey, now 77 and mostly confined to a wheelchair, is still as beloved as ever in San Francisco. He can be seen at Pac Bell nearly every home game, shaking hands, signing autographs and smiling his Giant smile.

Cepeda’s life spiraled out of control in the decade after the end of his playing career, and he spent time in prison for a drug conviction in the early 1980s. After his release, he returned to the Giants as a scout and goodwill ambassador and rehabilitated his image. His Giants number 30 was retired in 2008, and hangs from the rafters next to McCovey’s 44.

  1. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?
  2. A chapter
    b. A chapter section
    c. A page
    d. A paragraph
    e. A sentence
    f. A bribe

Modern research tools make Anson a tempting subject for a fresh biography. He was at the center of any number of significant events in baseball history. Bill James once suggested that Anson may have been the most important figure in making the National League the true major league, and popularizing baseball as a spectator sport.

Table 9.

Player Grade
Anson A
Rose A
McGee D
Klein C
McCovey B
Cepeda C

 

Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Ty Cobb and Pete Rose are the Mt. Rushmore of 20th century baseball legends. The stories told about them alone could fill the next Ed Burns 18-hour documentary.

  1. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

A- Pointless
B- Deluded
C- Exclusive
D- Behind
E- Discerning
F- Closed

Table 10.

Player Grade
Anson B
Rose B
McGee E
Klein D
McCovey B
Cepeda C

 

Many experts dismiss 19th baseball, calling it inferior. I wouldn’t make that argument; do we dismiss wars fought with spears? But it’s a reasonable argument to make. The Hall of Fame could exist without any of the 19th century players, hence the Hall of Fame could exist without Anson.

The Hall of Fame does exist without Pete Rose, and it’s closed to Pete Rose, but if he was eligible the Hall of Fame would not exist without him. Pick your poison.

Cepeda rides the border between C and D all the way down the Test. I like to call the players near the C/D line contrarian players, because they are the subjects of most contrarian debates. If a contrarian player is in the Hall, he’s overrated. If a contrarian player is not in the Hall, he is underrated. Cepeda was underrated until 1999, when the Veteran’s Committee elected him and made him overrated.

Klein waited 36 years to be selected, and he is filed under “S” for “Sure, why not?” in the Hall’s archives. If you write a book about the D grade Debate, the camera is always outside the door where the arguments take place. When a D grade player enters the Hall, he might as well be one of the “Field of Dreams” players, disappearing through the Ivy.

Report card.

question 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 GPA
Anson A B B B B B B A A B 3.3
Rose A A B B E C A A A A 3.2
McGee E E D E E E E D D E 0.3
Klein D D C D C E D C C D 1.3
McCovey B B B D B C B C B B 2.6
Cepeda C C C D D D D C C C 1.6

 

Anson played during the game’s infancy and a lot of the guys he dominated weren’t all that good. Anson was universally known, but he wasn’t universally liked; his personality was so big that it would be strange to discount it, but one man’s charismatic promotor is another man’s overbearing blowhard.

I ignored Anson’s controversial role in establishing baseball’s color-line when I ran him through the Test, but you might choose to include them. It’s not my place to tell you how to deal with the Hall’s cryptic character clause, or how to go back in time and put on a judge’s robe. It’s hard enough to judge racism in 2016, let alone going back to 1887.

You’ll have to choose how to deal with players like Rose and Shoeless Joe Jackson, who are ineligible for the Hall of Fame. Some Testers might give them F’s on questions seven, nine and ten, because they are ineligible (seven, ten) or violated the character clause (nine).

Cepeda earned a lot of C grades, but most of them are in the lower half, which brings up a point. Each grade has a natural line in the middle. The A grades include around 15 no-doubters and another 15 or so who are honored to hang out in the pantheon with them. The B grades include around 30 obvious B grade players and another 30 who are honored to hang out with them.

I think it’s a human condition. No matter what group you belong to, half of the group owns it and the other half are just happy to be there. Both halves think they are the good half, too. Charlie Manson’s family members all maintain that they are much better people than that horrible manipulator Charlie, while Charlie thinks his followers are a bunch of psychotic sycophants who never learned how to shut their gaping maws around the Man.

The mid-point separation in the C grade is defined, in part, by the exclusivist angle in the Debate. The mainstream exclusivists want to limit the Hall’s list to about one player for every year or so, and they like to begin in 1901. This means the typical exclusive Hall of Fame includes the A grades, the B grades and about half the C grades. The BBWAA line doesn’t define the middle of the C grade but the bottom, so the bottom of the C grade isn’t at 2. It’s at 1.5.

Klein’s grade is a couple of ticks below the bottom of the C bin, right around the bottom line for players can count on being chosen eventually. The players below that point will need an advocate to bring their case to the forefront – otherwise they might as well head for the soda fountain wearing a tight-fitting sweater.

Willie McCovey’s Test lurches up and down within the B grade and down into the C grade, settling about halfway in between. The B grade might be the most difficult to define, because B players are known more for what they aren’t than what they are.

The A, B and D grades all have specific identifying characteristics. A players are the best of the best. C players are the borderline BBWAA choices. D players are the stars of the old timer committees. B players are loosely defined as “too good to be C’s but not good enough to be A’s.”

McGee’s 0.3 sounds terrible compared to the rest of the Beta Test, but it puts McGee among the top 400 or so position players in the game’s history.

***

     There you have it. I included blank copies of the hitter and pitcher Test templates, so you can conduct your own Tests, and a larger sample of 210 players I ran through the Test, so you can see how the players compare. Thanks for reading.

The Test: Position Players

  1. Baseball Card – Where do his career milestone numbers put him?
  2. In the Top 25
    b. In the top 75
    c. In the top 150
    d. In the top 300
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. In the Navy
  3. Baseball Reference – According to the metrics, where is he?
  4. In the Top 25
    b. In the top 75
    c. In the top 150
    d. In the top 300
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. Standing next to Waldo
  5. Peak – At his best, he was
  6. The best of the best
    b. The best, other than that one guy who ruined the curve
    c. One of the best for a while
    d. One of the best for a moment
    e. One of the best of the rest
    f. One of the rest
  7. Prime – Pick one:
  8. He should have won the MVP award in every good year
    b. He could have won the MVP award in every good year
    c. He should have been an all-star in every good year
    d. He could have been an all-star in every good year
    e. He could have been an all-star in a career year
    f. He could have saved a ton of money on his car insurance
  9. Rate – Ignoring volume, he was
  10. In the Top 25
  11. In the top 75
  12. In the top 150
  13. In the top 300
  14. In the top 1,000
  15. Alarmingly concave
  1. Position Rank – He was in (or on) his position’s
  2. Throne
    b. Mt. Rushmore
    c. Sweet 16
    d. American Top 40
    e. Hot 100
    f. Do not resuscitate list
  3. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  4. They voted him in immediately by acclimation
    b. They elected him within 2-3 years
    c. The BBWAA elected him
    d. An old-timers committee elected him
    e. He got at least one vote from somebody
    f. Like a fool, mean and cruel
  5. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?
  6. Throw out his garbage
    b. Throw out a runner
    c. Throw out his back
    d. Throw out his wife
    e. Throw out his probation officer
    f. Throw out a Kardashian
  7. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?
  8. A chapter
    b. A chapter section
    c. A page
    d. A paragraph
    e. A sentence
    f. A bribe
  9. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

a- Pointless
b- Deluded
c- Exclusive
d- Behind
e- Discerning
f- Closed

The Test: Pitchers

  1. Baseball Card – Where do his career milestone numbers put him?
  2. In the Top 10
    b. In the top 30
    c. In the top 60
    d. In the top 100
    e. In the top 300
    f. In the chorus
  3. Baseball Reference – According to the metrics, where is he?
  4. In the Top 10
    b. In the top 30
    c. In the top 60
    d. In the top 100
    e. In the top 300
    f. On a milk carton
  5. Peak – At his best, he was
  6. The best of the best
    b. The best, other than that one guy who ruined the curve
    c. One of the best for a while
    d. One of the best for a moment
    e. One of the best of the rest
    f. One of the huddled masses, yearning to find the strike zone
  7. Prime – Pick one:
  8. He should have won the Cy Young award in every good year
    b. He could have won the Cy Young award in every good year
    c. He should have been an all-star in every good year
    d. He could have been an all-star in every good year
    e. He could have been an all-star in a career year
    f. He could have had a V8
  9. Rate – Taking volume out of the equation would move him to
  10. The top 10
    b. The top 30
    c. The top 60
    d. The top 100
    e. The top 300
    f. Tears

 

  1. Dominance – This player’s black and gray ink totals most closely resemble players in the:

a- Top 10

b- Top 30

c- Top 60

d- Top 100

e- Top 300

f- Witness protection program

  1. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  2. They voted him in immediately by acclimation
    b. They elected him within 2-3 years
    c. The BBWAA elected him
    d. An old-timers committee elected him
    e. He got at least one vote from somebody
    f. Like a northbound football in southbound boot factory
  3. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?
  4. Throw out his garbage
    b. Throw out a runner
    c. Throw out his back
    d. Throw out his wife
    e. Throw out his probation officer
    f. Throw out a Kardashian
  5. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?
  6. A chapter
    b. A chapter section
    c. A page
    d. A paragraph
    e. A sentence
    f. An act of charity
  7. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

a- Pointless
b- Deluded
c- Exclusive
d- Behind
e- Discerning
f- Patrolled

THE TEST – 210 MORE PLAYERS

Test Question Number
Pos Player Name 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 GPA
0 David Ortiz 2 2 2 2 2 1 2 3 3 3 2.2
0 Paul Molitor 3 3 1 2 1 2 3 2 2 2 2.1
0 Edgar Martinez 2 2 2 2 2 1 2 1 1 2 1.7
2 Yogi Berra 3 2 3 4 3 4 4 4 4 4 3.5
2 Johnny Bench 3 3 3 3 2 4 4 4 4 4 3.4
2 Mike Piazza 3 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 2.9
2 Ivan Rodriguez 3 3 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 2.7
2 Carlton Fisk 3 3 2 2 3 2 3 3 2 3 2.6
2 Mickey Cochrane 1 1 3 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 2.4
2 Roy Campanella 1 0 4 3 1 3 2 4 3 3 2.4
2 Bill Dickey 2 1 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.0
2 Gabby Hartnett 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 2 2.0
2 Thurman Munson 0 1 2 2 1 1 1 3 2 1 1.4
2 Ted Simmons 2 1 1 1 1 2 1 2 1 1 1.3
2 Roger Bresnahan 0 1 2 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.2
2 Ernie Lombardi 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
2 Wally Schang 0 1 0 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.0
2 Jorge Posada 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 0.9
2 Elston Howard 0 0 2 1 0 1 0 1 1 1 0.7
2 Bill Freehan 0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0.4
3 Lou Gehrig 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
3 Albert Pujols 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 3 4 4 3.6
3 Jimmie Foxx 3 3 4 4 4 3 3 4 4 3 3.5
3 Frank Thomas 3 3 4 4 2 3 3 3 3 3 3.1
3 Miguel Cabrera 3 3 4 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3.1
3 Hank Greenberg 2 2 3 3 3 2 3 4 3 3 2.8
3 Harmon Killebrew 2 3 3 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 2.7
3 Johnny Mize 2 3 3 3 3 2 3 2 2 3 2.6
3 Eddie Murray 3 2 2 3 3 2 3 3 2 2 2.5
3 Gary Carter 2 3 2 2 2 2 3 3 2 3 2.4
3 Mark McGwire 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 3 3 2.4
3 Jeff Bagwell 2 3 3 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.3
3 Jim Thome 3 3 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.3
3 George Sisler 2 2 3 2 1 2 3 2 2 2 2.1
3 Bill Terry 2 1 3 2 1 2 2 3 2 2 2.0
3 Keith Hernandez 0 2 2 2 2 1 1 3 2 2 1.7
3 Steve Garvey 1 0 2 2 2 1 1 3 2 2 1.6
3 Tony Perez 2 1 2 2 1 1 2 2 2 1 1.6
3 Will Clark 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.6
3 Jason Giambi 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 2 1 1 1.4
3 Rafael Palmeiro 2 3 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.4
3 Todd Helton 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.2
3 Jim Bottomley 1 0 2 2 0 0 1 2 2 1 1.1
Test Question Number
Pos Player Name 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 GPA
3 John Olerud 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.1
3 Fred McGriff 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
3 Gil Hodges 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.0
3 Lance Berkman 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
3 Mark Teixeira 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
3 Carlos Delgado 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 0.9
3 Paul Konerko 1 0 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 0.8
3 Al Oliver 1 0 1 0 1 0 1 1 1 0 0.6
3 Frank Howard 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 1 1 0.6
3 Norm Cash 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 0.6
3 Adrian Gonzalez 0 0 1 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 0.5
3 George Kelly 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 0.5
3 Frank McCormick 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.4
4 Rogers Hornsby 4 4 4 4 4 3 4 4 4 4 3.9
4 Joe Morgan 3 4 4 4 3 4 4 4 4 4 3.8
4 Eddie Collins 3 4 3 3 4 4 4 3 4 4 3.6
4 Nap Lajoie 3 4 4 4 3 3 3 4 3 3 3.4
4 Rod Carew 3 3 3 3 3 2 3 4 3 3 3.0
4 Frankie Frisch 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 3 3 2.4
4 Charlie Gehringer 2 3 3 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.3
4 Craig Biggio 3 2 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.2
4 Roberto Alomar 3 2 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.2
4 Ryne Sandberg 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 2 2 2.2
4 Robinson Cano 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 3 2 2 2.0
4 Johnny Evers 0 1 2 2 2 1 1 3 2 2 1.6
4 Nellie Fox 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 2 2 2 1.6
4 Jeff Kent 2 1 2 2 2 1 1 2 1 1 1.5
4 Joe Gordon 0 2 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1.4
4 Larry Doyle 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 2 1 1 1.4
4 Billy Herman 1 1 1 2 2 1 1 2 1 1 1.3
4 Chase Utley 0 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1.1
4 Lou Whitaker 1 2 0 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1.1
4 Red Schoendienst 1 0 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1.1
4 Tony Lazzeri 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
4 Bobby Doerr 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.0
4 Willie Randolph 1 2 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
4 Bobby Grich 0 2 1 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 0.9
4 Julio Franco 1 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 0.9
5 George Brett 3 3 3 3 2 3 4 4 3 3 3.1
5 Brooks Robinson 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 4 3 3 2.9
5 Chipper Jones 3 3 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 2.8
Test Question Number
Pos Player Name 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 GPA
5 Eddie Mathews 3 3 2 2 3 3 3 2 3 3 2.7
5 Wade Boggs 3 3 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 2.6
5 Home Run Baker 1 2 2 2 1 2 2 3 3 2 2.0
5 Adrian Beltre 3 2 1 1 2 2 2 1 2 2 1.8
5 Ron Santo 1 3 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 2 1.7
5 Pie Traynor 2 0 1 2 2 2 1 2 2 1 1.5
5 Ken Boyer 1 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.3
5 Graig Nettles 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.2
5 Darrell Evans 1 2 1 1 1 2 1 0 1 1 1.1
5 Stan Hack 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.1
5 Heinie Groh 0 1 2 2 1 1 0 1 1 1 1.0
5 Matt Williams 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
5 Scott Rolen 1 2 0 1 0 2 1 1 1 1 1.0
5 David Wright 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 1 0.9
5 Bob Elliott 0 1 1 1 1 1 0 0 1 1 0.7
5 George Kell 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 1 0.7
5 Aramis Ramirez 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0.3
5 Larry Gardner 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0.3
6 Honus Wagner 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
6 Alex Rodriguez 4 4 3 4 4 3 4 4 4 4 3.8
6 Derek Jeter 3 3 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 3.3
6 Cal Ripken 3 3 3 3 2 3 4 4 3 4 3.2
6 Ernie Banks 2 2 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 3 3.1
6 Robin Yount 3 3 3 3 2 3 3 3 3 3 2.9
6 Ozzie Smith 1 3 2 2 2 3 3 4 3 3 2.6
6 Barry Larkin 1 2 2 2 3 3 3 2 2 2 2.2
6 Joe Cronin 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2.1
6 Luke Appling 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2.1
6 Arky Vaughan 2 3 2 2 2 3 2 1 1 2 2.0
6 Luis Aparicio 2 2 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1.9
6 Lou Boudreau 1 2 3 2 1 1 2 2 2 2 1.8
6 Pee Wee Reese 1 2 1 2 2 2 1 3 2 2 1.8
6 Alan Trammell 1 2 1 2 1 2 2 2 1 1 1.5
6 Rabbit Maranville 1 0 2 1 2 1 2 2 2 2 1.5
6 Bobby Wallace 0 2 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1.2
6 Joe Sewell 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
6 Vern Stephens 1 0 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.1
6 Bert Campaneris 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.0
6 Travis Jackson 1 0 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 0.8
6 Edgar Renteria 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 1 0 0.4
6 Jim Fregosi 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0.3
7 Barry Bonds 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
Test Question Number
Pos Player Name 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 GPA
7 Stan Musial 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
7 Ted Williams 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
7 Rickey Henderson 4 4 4 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 3.7
7 Carl Yastrzemski 3 3 3 2 3 2 3 4 3 3 2.9
7 Al Simmons 3 2 2 3 3 2 3 3 3 3 2.7
7 Manny Ramirez 3 2 2 2 2 2 3 4 3 3 2.6
7 Willie Stargell 2 2 3 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 2.5
7 Jim Rice 2 1 2 2 2 1 2 3 2 2 1.9
7 Joe Medwick 2 1 2 2 2 1 2 3 2 2 1.9
7 Billy Williams 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 1 2 1.8
7 Fred Clarke 1 2 1 2 2 2 1 3 2 2 1.8
7 Tim Raines 2 2 2 2 1 2 2 1 2 2 1.8
7 Gary Sheffield 2 1 2 2 2 1 1 2 2 2 1.7
7 Goose Goslin 2 2 1 2 2 1 1 1 2 1 1.5
7 Heinie Manush 2 1 2 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.4
7 Ralph Kiner 1 1 2 2 0 1 1 2 2 2 1.4
7 Sherry Magee 1 2 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1.4
7 Zack Wheat 2 2 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1.4
7 Albert Belle 1 1 2 2 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.3
7 Bobby Bonds 1 0 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.1
7 Jose Cruz 0 1 2 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
7 Minnie Minoso 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
7 Luis Gonzalez 1 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 0.9
7 Bob Johnson 1 2 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 1 0.8
7 Matt Holliday 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 0.7
7 Moises Alou 1 0 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 0 0.7
7 Bobby Veach 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 0.6
7 Bobby Thomson 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 1 1 0.5
7 Bob Meusel 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 0.3
8 Ty Cobb 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
8 Willie Mays 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
8 Mickey Mantle 3 4 4 4 4 3 4 4 4 4 3.8
8 Tris Speaker 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 4 4 4 3.8
8 Joe DiMaggio 3 3 4 4 4 3 4 4 4 4 3.7
8 Ken Griffey, Jr. 3 3 4 3 3 2 4 4 4 4 3.4
8 Kirby Puckett 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 2.4
8 Duke Snider 2 2 2 2 1 2 3 3 3 3 2.3
8 Andre Dawson 2 1 2 2 2 1 2 2 2 2 1.8
8 Carlos Beltran 1 2 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1.8
Test Question Number
Pos Player Name 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 GPA
8 Larry Doby 0 1 2 2 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.3
8 Richie Ashburn 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1.3
8 Earl Averill 1 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.2
8 Torii Hunter 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.2
8 Andruw Jones 1 2 1 1 0 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
8 Bernie Williams 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 2 2 1 1.1
8 Max Carey 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
8 Edd Roush 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.0
8 Hack Wilson 0 0 2 1 0 1 1 2 2 1 1.0
8 Jim Wynn 0 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1.0
8 Johnny Damon 1 1 0 0 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.0
8 Fred Lynn 0 1 2 0 0 1 1 2 1 1 0.9
8 Willie Davis 1 2 0 0 1 1 0 2 1 1 0.9
8 Earle Combs 1 0 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 0.8
8 Vada Pinson 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 0 1 1 0.8
8 Dom DiMaggio 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 1 0.5
9 Babe Ruth 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4.0
9 Hank Aaron 4 4 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 3.9
9 Frank Robinson 3 4 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 3 3.4
9 Mel Ott 3 4 2 4 4 3 3 4 3 3 3.3
9 Reggie Jackson 3 3 3 2 3 2 3 4 4 4 3.1
9 Roberto Clemente 3 3 3 2 3 2 4 3 4 3 3.0
9 Al Kaline 3 3 2 2 3 2 4 3 3 3 2.8
9 Sam Crawford 3 3 3 3 3 2 2 3 3 3 2.8
9 Paul Waner 3 3 2 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 2.7
9 Tony Gwynn 3 2 2 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 2.6
9 Vladimir Guerrero 3 2 2 2 3 2 3 2 2 2 2.3
9 Dave Winfield 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 2 2 2.2
9 Harry Heilmann 2 3 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 2 2.2
9 Sammy Sosa 3 2 2 2 1 1 2 3 3 2 2.1
9 Enos Slaughter 1 2 2 2 2 2 1 1 2 2 1.7
9 Sam Rice 2 1 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1.4
9 Larry Walker 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.3
9 Tony Oliva 1 0 2 2 1 1 1 2 2 1 1.3
9 Juan Gonzalez 1 0 2 3 0 0 1 2 2 1 1.2
9 Dave Parker 2 0 2 2 0 0 1 2 1 1 1.1
9 Jose Canseco 1 0 3 0 0 0 1 4 1 1 1.1
9 Ken Singleton 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1.1
9 Rusty Staub 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1.1
9 Bobby Abreu 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 1.0
9 Darryl Strawberry 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 3 1 1 0.8
9 Harold Baines 1 0 1 1 1 0 1 0 1 1 0.7
9 Harry Hooper 0 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 0.7
9 Babe Herman 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 1 1 0.6
9 Magglio Ordonez 1 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0.5
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The Test: Framing Baseball’s Hall of Fame Discussion

We like to debate.

We will debate about anything, too. Pick a subject, pick a side – and there’s a debate. Pick a side of your side – and there’s another debate. Good luck agreeing about that one, either. There’s always another side, another facet to the debate that will inspire another debate. We will debate about anything.

Name a hobby, and there are people who debate about it. Name a food group, there’s a debate. Name a food; hell, name any two things that are not exactly the same. Somebody, somewhere is debating about them. They might even be the same, for all intents and purposes. A Boolean Google search for “Which Olsen twin is better?” garnered 1,510 hits.

There are all kinds of unsettled debates. Ginger or Mary Ann? Paper or plastic? Tom Cruise or Johnny Depp? Peanut butter or chocolate? Are you a little bit country or a little bit rock-n-roll? To be, or not to be? I may be dating myself with all those old pop culture references, but the point is in there somewhere.

What is a county fair but a series of organized debates? Which tomato is the reddest? Which pie is the sweetest? Which soon-to-be-a-side-of-beef cow has the shiniest coat? Which one of you gullible yahoos can toss this 4-inch ring around this 5-inch spike? How dumb do you think I am? Would I rather have the plastic key chain or the little rubber ball, now that I wasted 40 dollars trying to toss a 4-inch ring around a 5-inch spike? We will debate the merits of a plastic ring versus a rubber ball – combined value 3 cents – and forget the 40 bucks we lost like it never happened. We are on to the next debate; don’t bother us with trifles.

We don’t need to know anything to get in on the debate, either I don’t follow Belgian comedians, but if I heard two of them I’d have an opinion about which one I liked, even though I didn’t understand a word either one said. I have no idea which cereal brand is most popular in Uzbekistan, but I know the difference between corn and wheat so I can weigh in on that debate. Gambling is just debating with money involved. If I sit down at a slot machine I can’t possibly control whether or not it is a winner or a loser, but I have heard people debate about which slots pay out and which slots don’t. And so have you.

We can debate about anything – and we often do – but most of us gravitate to the debates we find the most interesting. I lost my 40 dollars at the fair decades ago, and I ain’t going back to the ring-toss. Mary Ann ain’t coming to my birthday party, and peanut butter and chocolate make everything taste better except maybe cabbage. The Olsen twins have a little sister who is way hotter than either one of them, and the only coat that matters to a steak is made out of garlic, onions, mushrooms and bacon.

My locus of personal interest has narrowed over the years. Other than the occasional digression into a passing fancy – like spending half a decade obsessing over and writing 400,000 words (4 books worth) about American Idol –  I have limited my strongest opinions to the big three. Yes, there are three great ongoing, perpetually unsettled discussions in American society: politics, religion, and baseball’s Hall of Fame.

Why do otherwise normal human beings – who really should have better things to do – care so much about baseball’s Hall of Fame? It’s just a list of names. Why do sports news outlets waste so much space on baseball’s Hall of Fame? It’s only in the news a couple of times a year. Why are so many people still yelling about Pete Rose not getting into baseball’s Hall of Fame? He hasn’t played a game in over 30 years. Why do they care?

Why do I care?

To answer that, I need to explain a couple of things. First, I need to explain what I mean when I say baseball’s Hall of Fame, or “the Hall.” Second, I need to explain how our little Hall of Fame discussions took on a life of their own, melded together and became the Discussion. Finally, once I convince you that there are no answers – that the Hall of Fame Discussion can never be settled – I’ll present you with a template you can use to settle it.

I’m just kidding. It really can’t be settled. Frankly, I don’t think it should be settled. But I designed a template you can use to organize your end of the Discussion. We are getting ahead of ourselves, though. Before we can organize the Discussion, we need to know what all the hubbub is about.

THE HALL

Cooperstown Village lies at the end of a two-lane road in upstate New York, nestled within the boundaries of Otsego County. Cooperstown lies partially in the town of Otsego, partially in the town of Middlefield. Otsego and Middlefield combined have a population of just over 6,000 people. Cooperstown village is home to a hair under 2,000.

The village, founded by the the family of noted author James Fenimore Cooper, has long been known for its historical attractions. The Clark family – half-owners of the Singer sewing machine patent – established their foundation in Cooperstown shortly after the end of the Civil War. The Clarks built most of the village’s attractions, including a museum of baseball history.

Cooperstown was home to Civil War general Abner Doubleday. Doubleday reportedly fired the first shot in defense of Fort Sumter and played a prominent role in the battle of Gettysburg. It was believed for several decades that Doubleday invented baseball in a cow pasture in Cooperstown in 1839. The myth was later debunked, but the Clark family opened the baseball museum in 1939 as part of a centennial celebration of Doubleday’s invention.

The Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is home to the Hall of Fame library, research center, gift shop and theater. It is home to rooms full of baseball artifacts and memorabilia. And it is home to the baseball Hall of Fame.

THE LIST

It can be confusing, keeping the Hall of Fame and the Hall of Fame and Museum straight. The Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is the brick-and-mortar home of baseball’s Hall of Fame. The museum includes a gallery of plaques, one for each member of baseball’s Hall of Fame. The museum receives nearly 300,000 visitors each year. Baseball’s Hall of Fame and Museum is tangible, touchable, and visitable. Baseball’s Hall of Fame is none of those things. Baseball’s Hall of Fame is a roll call – a list with – at the moment – 315 names on it.

Why do we care so much about a list?

The United States Constitution is just a sheet of paper, too – and one apparently so boring that most the millions of people who read “50 Shades of Gray” and “The Scarsdale Diet” haven’t bothered to read it. It doesn’t keep them from arguing about it, though. American politics centers on the Constitution like American religion centers on the Bible, another bit of reading left to gather dust by most of the people who argue about it.

We don’t read the list, but we know the parts we need to know for our arguments.

We don’t care about the list, but we care about the battles over the list. We debate about who gets in now and who gets in later. We argue about how long the list should be. We fight about how the list should be sorted. We discuss the list. We care deeply about the discussion. The Discussion. Every argument, every debate, every fight about baseball’s Hall of Fame is part of one gigantic discussion.

That is what we care about. The Discussion.

The Hall of Fame Discussion sprang into being in 1939, about 15 minutes after the Hall of Fame list came into existence, and it has been resonating off the walls of barrooms, libraries, restaurants, construction sites, offices, convention halls and living rooms since then. Where baseball fans meet, the Discussion lives.

Here is an example:

“Hey, did you hear? The Veterans Committee just elected Joe Shlabotnik* to the Hall of Fame!”

“The honor is meaningless now, man. They’ll let anybody in.”

“Are you kidding? It’s harder than ever to get in. Look at Harold Baines – 2,866 hits and 384 homers and he hardly got a vote … Rusty Staub – La Grande Orange got almost 3,000 hits and he was a hero in the 1973 World Series for the Mets, and they laughed at him, too … Tommy John? They even named a surgery after him, and he won 288 games, played for 27 years, and he’s still not in.”

“The Hall of Fame ain’t for the good players like those guys, it’s for the great players. Willie Mays, Babe Ruth, Stan the Man – those guys. You put Rusty Staub in with the Babe, you cheapen the honor.”

“So there should be what – ten players in the Hall of Fame?”

“No, maybe a hundred … we can elect guys like Harmon Killebrew and Gaylord Perry, but Don Drysdale? He only won 209 games. He shouldn’t be in.”

“So we should kick him out?”

“Well, I dunno about that … maybe they should have two rooms. They can put Stan the Man in a fancy room, guys like Drysdale and Tony Perez in another one, not so fancy.”

“What about the guys who got elected by the Veterans Committees? Some of those guys were bad picks. George Kelly, Freddy Lindstrom … maybe we need three rooms.”

“Maybe … how many should be in the main room? Should Stan the Man be in the same room with Killebrew? Killer’s career batting average was way lower than Musial’s average, and we haven’t even gotten to Ty Cobb. Cobb’s batting average was over a hundred points higher.”

“Fair enough, but do we put Killer in with Drysdale? He hit 573 homeruns and Major League Baseball modeled the logo after him.”

“Yeah, if he’s good enough for MLB’s logo, he shouldn’t be in the cattle car. Maybe we need four rooms.”

* – Joe Shlabotnik was Charlie Brown’s favorite player. He is not in the Hall of Fame.

***

Individual discussions like this one are united into one Discussion by a pair of basic questions:

  1. In or out?
  2. Big or small?

The in or our argument invariably flares into the argument about big or small. The small Hall advocates – the exclusivists – want the Hall of Fame to be limited to the greats of the game. They think the Hall of Fame is only for guys like Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle. They whine bitterly every time one of the old timer committees makes a selection.

The other side of the argument comes from the big-Hall advocates – the inclusivists – who want everyone to get in. The inclusivists want a cocktail party, with Norah Jones whispering her way through her latest album at the piano bar. The inclusivists want a luau, with six pigs in the ground and a Jimmy Buffet tribute band blaring from the main stage. The inclusivists whine bitterly every time one of the old timer committees fails to make a selection.

Like religion and politics, everybody picks a side of the argument and sticks to it. The inclusivists want Harold Baines and his 2,866 hits in. The exclusivists want Pud Galvin’s 361 wins out because he only led the league in ERA once. Inclusivists love Willie McGee; exclusivists laugh at Willie McGee. Inclusivists want Dodger great Steve Garvey in. Impact advocates want Curt Schilling’s bloody sock in, but Schilling’s bloody foot out.

It is impossible to satisfy everyone. The exclusivists are in a permanent state of depression because the old-timers committee elected Tommy McCarthy and Roger Bresnahan in 1946. I’m not making that up; it’s been 70 years and the curtains are still drawn. The inclusivists, tired of waiting for their favorites to be elected, want to replace the voters with rubber stamps and cattle cars.

To summarize, in order to satisfy everyone the Hall of Fame needed to be small but large, exclusive but inclusive, full of famous but underrated players held to demanding but forgiving standards. We had to elect several players ever year, as long as we never elected anyone. There was no possible way to satisfy all the arguments.

Until now.

THE FOREST

In an act of what can only be described as accidental genius, the Museum trustees handed the human resources aspect of the Hall of Fame – the list – to the Baseball Writers Association of America without any specific parameters. They told the BBWAA to elect 10 original members – 5 from the 19th century and 5 from the 20th century – and hold periodic elections to populate the list. They decided on 2 basic parameters: a player should have played at least 10 years, and at least 75 percent of an official BBWAA body should agree on his election.

I emphasis the word “should” for a reason. In the 80 years since the BBWAA was given the authority to hold Hall of Fame elections, the Museum trustees have never told the BBWAA who to elect. They have made periodic changes to control how many new members were elected, but they have never shown the slightest interest in who they were.

The confusion might seem annoying on the surface, but perfecting the selection process would kill the Discussion deader than a pigeon in a Cuisinart. The illogical, disorderly system is the magic potion that gives life to all the little discussions, turning them into the Discussion.

Barstool arguments about baseball are usually either “if I voted I sure wouldn’t have voted for that bozo” or “I think the Hall of Fame is missing …” – and every fan thinks he knows something the Hall is doing wrong. If the Hall of Fame’s parameters were clearly defined, those conversations would never happen – could never happen. There would be nothing to argue about.

Case in point … the barstool pundits might argue about whether the Supreme Court would work better with seven members – and take a shot every time somebody mentions Roe v. Wade – but the arguments never build up any steam because the Supreme Court has specific rules. It takes a lot of hubris to claim to know how to design the Supreme Court better than the Founding Fathers. The Hall, on the other hand, is a big herkin’ mess that every drunk knows how to fix – and they don’t mind sharing.

The Ladies Professional Golf Association’s Hall of Fame eligibility process has a list of 27 criteria that must be met before a player becomes eligible for the vote. The standards are so high that few players ever make the ballot, and every player who made the ballot has been immediately voted in. There has never been a discussion, let alone a Discussion about the LPGA Hall of Fame. There is nothing to discuss.

Subjectivity is the very lifeblood of baseball’s Hall of Fame. Without subjectivity, the arguments end. Without the arguments, the Hall of Fame’s lofty pop culture status goes up in smoke like a lazy mosquito on a barbecue grill. Without its overly subjective, endlessly confusing, perpetually annoying lack of definition, and the Hall would just be a list. And the Cooperstown museum would be nothing more than a dusty, out of the way storage bin for the game’s discarded past.

***

“All those religions … Is it possible that I was searching them the wrong way? Could it be that every one of all religions is true?”

“Point to the shortest direction around the universe. It doesn’t matter where you point, it’s the shortest … and you’re pointing back at yourself.”

– Valentine Michael Smith, “Stranger in a Strange Land”

 

All the arguments can be correct, just like all religions can be correct, because the Hall is whatever you want it to be. It’s your Hall. Because it is not defined, you get to make it up yourself. Every argument is its own Hall of Fame.

We have room for lots of lists. We can all have our own list. If you believe the Hall of Fame should only include 30 players, include 30. If you think the Hall of Fame should include a thousand players – well, you’ll need more paper but knock yourself out.

If you think Maury Wills was the greatest shortstop in history, put him at the top of your paper. If you think Ray Oyler was the greatest shortstop in history, you can – well, there are limits. But even if you aren’t always right, you always have the right to your opinion. I’m sure there can be a universe where Ray Oyler was the greatest shortstop ever. Maybe in yours. There are no stupid Halls, only stupid people who refuse to believe in your Ray Oyler-led vision.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Every Hall of Fame list needs a bottom line, whether it’s drawn under the 30th name or the 300th name. Your bottom line will be defined by the series of yes or no questions you ask yourself: is he in or is he out? As in “is he above the line, or below the line?”

There are as many ways to define the line as your imagination can hold. Here are a few samples:

  1. He should be in because he had more hits than that schmo that already got in.
  2. He should be out because he has a low WAR total.
  3. He should be in because when he was at his best, he was the best.
  4. He should be out because nobody thought he was as good as you think he is.
  5. He should be in because he had one of the highest batting averages ever.
  6. He should be out because other players at his position are more qualified.
  7. He should be in because his type always gets in.
  8. He should be out because nobody knew who he was.
  9. He should be in because he changed baseball history.
  10. He should be out because the Hall of Fame doesn’t need him.

If every argument is true, every one of these samples are real, valid samples. If we plotted every opinion on a grid – not just these ten, but all every single opinion about the Hall of Fame ever stated – it would eventually form a shape – a scatter plot galaxy of opinions.

If the first  is a true/false question (in or out?), then the second question is multiple choice. The first question hands out invitations to the innies and puts the outies on a bus. The second question uses multiple choice to sort the innies into clubs.

Bill James published an essay about a 4-tier system in The Bill James Historical Abstract (cite) and Bill Simmons suggested a 7-tier system for the National Basketball Association (NBA) in The Book of Basketball. (Cite) James’ essay provided loose definitions for how he would separate players into categories based on their suitability for the Hall of Fame, while Simmons mostly argued about where the players would rank. I found inspiration in both.

First, building a tiered Hall of Fame requires a framework to house the tiers. My theoretical Hall of Fame club will have five floors.

The top floor will house the private “Pantheon club” of 30 original members, with one new member elected every few years. Downton Abbey’s waitstaff will serve corked wine out of dusty bottles and hors d’ oeuvres made out of snails and fish eggs on crystal platters. The napkins will be made of silk, the chairs crushed velvet.

The VIP club’s original 60 can add a new member roughly every other year. Former White House staffers will serve the best craft beers with seafood appetizers on the good China. The napkins will be linen, the chairs aged leather.

The restaurant will seat the All-Star Club’s 180 original members, with plenty of space to accommodate the one new member brought in each year. The waitstaff of retired flight attendants will serve capped wine and ice cold light beer to wash down artichoke pizza bagels and deep fried zuccini, served on Martha Stewart commemorative plates. The napkins, like the chairs, will be made out of cloth recycled from unsold Pete Rose game-worn uniforms.

The cafeteria will have room for several hundred members, but they will only be allowed to seat new people by permission of a special committee. The servers will be lunch ladies who were let go by the New York Public Schools system, and every Tuesday will be meatloaf day. Members are encouraged to wear long sleeves and thick pants; the benches have splinters and somebody keeps stealing the napkins out of the bathroom. New members will be required to bring boxed wine and do the dishes after each meal.

The rest of the candidates can wait in the bar next to the lobby (there’s a 2-drink minimum) or stand in line outside, behind a velvet rope. We encourage hopeful candidates to bring food for the doorman. It won’t get anyone in, but he gets surly when his blood sugar tanks.

Once the place is built, we will need a way to sort the members into the appropriate clubs. After years of experimenting with tarot cards, tea leaves and Ouija boards (don’t ask) I settled on the same scholastic ABCD system that James used.

The Hall of Fame club has 5 floors, so I designed a system with 6 grades. The A grades can follow Babe Ruth’s entourage to the Pantheon while the B grades are escorted to the VIP club. A guide can lead the C grades to the All-Star club, and directions to the Old Timers Cafeteria are prominently posted in the lobby. The E grades can loiter, but they have to wait at the back of the line. F grade stragglers should be chased off with a hose.

Now that we know where they go, who are they? How do we tell them apart? What makes a grade A Hall of Famer an A, and a grade D Hall of Famer a D?

I came up with a set of ten questions, a mix of the most popular Hall of Fame arguments:

  1. The baseball card: Where does he rank on the counting stat lists?
  2. The number crunch: Where does he rank according to the popular analytics?
  3. Peak value: How good was he at his best?
  4. Established value: Where was he in the pecking order during his prime years?
  5. Rate value: Where does he rank in the percentage stats?
  6. Position value: Where does he rank at his position?
  7. Respect: How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  8. Prominence: How newsworthy was he?
  9. Impact: How will the history books treat him?
  10. Relevance: How would the Hall of Fame look without him?

Should Harold Baines be in because he had 2,866 hits and 384 homeruns? Question one is designed to give long career compilers like Baines a voice. Should Bobby Grich be in because he has a really high WAR total? Question two gives him a voice. Roger Maris? Questions three, seven and nine. Charlie Bennett? His voice is in there. Who is Charlie Bennett? Charlie Bennett was a 19th century catcher, known for his defensive wizardry, who lost his legs when he fell while trying to board a train. Bennett Park in Detroit was named for him, the only major league stadium ever named for a player. He gets his due in questions eight and nine.

The Test separates the men from the boys, but it also give the boys a chance to play. The greats of the game compete for the A and B grades, while the more rank and file stars compete for the C and D grades, and jostle for position in the Hall of Fame candidate pecking order. The Test can cover the line between in and out, but it doesn’t live there like so many other Hall of Fame arguments. It doesn’t have to spend all its time dealing with the borderline cases, leaving the innies to rot on dusty shelves while the outies get all the attention.

First, the system works on a grading curve. Baseball itself is one giant curved grading system, if you think about it. There is only one champion each year, and there is a champion every year. Teams are sorted from top to bottom no matter how they compare to the teams outside their grading curve. The top half of each subset, whether it’s a league or a division, is called the first division -and last place is always last place.

Second, the system is designed to have vertical and horizontal integrity. If you go off the grading rails it’s fairly simple to see where you digressed, and how you can get back to the Test-ational superhighway.

The Test works vertically for individual players. Running a player through the Test generates a grade-point average that corresponds with the ABCD grading system. If the GPA you come up with is too far off the general consensus, the Discussion will consider your grade an outlier. That doesn’t mean you have to agree with the Discussion, though. It simply means your grade will get laughed out of the room unless you can back it up with some convincing evidence.

The Test works horizontally for groups of players. If you run a pool of players through the Test, you need to wind up with the right number of players for each grade. If, for example, you run a pool of candidates through one of the subjective questions and you have 9 A’s, 12 B’s, 135 C’s and 62 D’s, you should probably make some adjustments.

Your Test, your rules, though. If you think there are 9 A’s and 135 C’s, that’s up to you. As always, though, opinions are worthless without convincing evidence to back them up. If you want to convince anyone that there were 9 grade A players, 12 grade B players, 135 grade C players and 62 grade D players in your pool, you are going to have to present compelling evidence.

Keep in mind that you need to maintain vertical and horizontal integrity. Your subjective grade breakdowns need to match the objective breakdowns, so if you adjust one you have to adjust the other.

THE GRADES

  1. A. One of the top 30 players ever. A grade A player was a winner he was the best of the best. He was the MVP favorite every spring, and either the MVP or the guy who got shafted in the MVP voting in the fall. He lasted long enough to rank near the top of the counting category lists, and his rate stats were as impressive as his counting stats. He reached the top of the game and he stayed there for years. He was a household name and the face of the game. No history of baseball could be told without him. When he became eligible for the Hall of Fame he was voted in immediately by virtual acclimation, and every sports magazine got flooded with angry letters demanding to know why he wasn’t unanimously elected. Baseball spits out a grade A player about once every five years.
  2. B. One of the top 90 players ever. The grade B grade player owned the playground if there wasn’t a grade A player around. He was a grade A player, but with a weakness. He was the wise guy pick to knock off the reigning grade A player (Frank Robinson), or he was a grade A player with a short career (Sandy Koufax), or he dominated a weak group of players (Hal Newhouser). He wasn’t a household name, but he was universally known within the sporting world. The Hall of Fame voted him in quickly, usually within 2-3 years. Nobody would picket Cooperstown if he wasn’t elected right away, but there would be letters. Baseball spits out a grade B player every couple of years.
  3. C. One of the top 180 players ever. The grade C player might have been the star on a bad team, like Richie Ashburn with the 1950s Phillies, or just one of the guys on a great team, like Tony Perez with the Big Red Machine in the 1970s. A grade C player can’t win without help from an A or B player. A grade C player was a perennial all-star who could win an MVP in a career year, but not a consistent MVP contender. He was a big name in the baseball universe, but anonymous elsewhere. The BBWAA voted him into the Hall of Fame, but it took a while. Grade C Hall of Fame bandwagons generally start out slow, and gain steam towards the end of the player’s eligibility.
  4. One of the top 400 players ever. The D players can be sorted into 3 groups: grade C producers who had really short careers, grade E producers who had really long careers, or star players with an obvious weakness. The grade D might have never put up that one big year, or the one big second year to “prove” the first one. His career might have been interrupted by a rash of injuries, or truncated by substance abuse issues. He might have been a grade C offensive player but a terrible defender, or a tremendous defender but a god-awful hitter. A grade D player would have been known to hometown fans, hard-core fans and fantasy baseball fans. Baseball spit out about 1 grade D player per year before expansion, or about 1 per 16 teams. With 30 teams, the number is up to about 2 per year.
  5. The E players are the rest of the regular players. If a player survived for 10 years and played regularly for 5 years he was an E player. A total of 741 pitchers have thrown at least 1,500 innings and 1,548 position players have played at least 1,000 games since the National Association opened for business in 1871. I set my parameters a little lower, to catch players who would have a fighting chance of landing on a positional top 100 list or a top 300 pitcher list, but
  6. According to BaseballReference.com, 16,982 players have gotten into a major league baseball game. Out of that pool 2,579 position players played at least 600 games, 958 starting pitchers took the ball for at least 125 games and 796 relief pitchers got into at least 250 games. That’s 4,331 out of 16,982, a little over 25 percent. I’m sure the other 75 percent were kind to their mothers and rarely kicked stray dogs, but we’ll make sure to padlock the entryway.

Just in case.

***

THE TEST

Before we go over the individual questions, I need to explain the rules:

Rule one: it’s your Test, your rules.

Rule two: There is no second rule.

If you think Willie McGee was better than Willie McCovey, grade accordingly. If you think you can sell it (outside Willie McGee’s family) you are probably barking up the wrong mctree, but it’s your Test, your rules. If you want to argue that Roger Maris was more famous than Stan Musial, grade accordingly. If you want to argue that Ray Oyler was a better hitter than Ted Williams, grade accordingly. It’s your Test, your rules.

You may be thinking to yourself, “but what is the point in that? I can just give good grades to the players I like, and say screw you to everyone else?” Call it step one in the process. Give all your favorite players A grades, give all your sworn enemies F grades, and get it out of your system. Share your results with your friends and have a good laugh. It’s your Test, your rules.

If you want to argue your opinion, however, there is a catch: an opinion without backing evidence is worthless. You can say Eleanor Roosevelt was a beauty, but sooner or later somebody is going to produce a picture. You can claim the Pittsburgh Steelers won the 1936 World Series if you want, but it only takes a couple of mouse clicks to make you look foolish.

More esoterically, if you want to claim that Roger Maris was a B player you can, but you will have to find a way to explain away his short, oft-injured career and low career batting average. If you point at his two MVP trophies, skeptics will point to his

if you want your opinion to be accepted into evidence, you have to sell it to the judge. An opinion without supporting evidence is as worthless in a bar as it is in a courtroom. If you don’t have any evidence to back up your love of Ray Oyler, your argument will be as toothless as a band saw in a blast furnace. If you want to share your opinion, your opinio

The Test will help you sort the exhibits, but you need to get them into evidence and convince the jury of their importance. If you say Willie McGee was better than Willie McCovey, you will need to convince your skeptics that McGee’s superior speed and defensive value trumped McCovey’s ability to hit baseballs over Willie McGee’s head into McCovey Cove.

If your opinions are too far from reality they are worthless in a serious discussion, Test or no Test, but the Test can mold and refine your opinions into strong, defensible stances. If you can prove that Willie McGee was a better player than Willie McCovey you are wasting your time here – you should be arguing in front of the Supreme Court (or locked up somewhere you can never escape) – but the rest of us can use the Test to refine our loose intuition into cogent, fact-based opinion.

The Test is not the house, but the scaffolding. The 10 questions allow us to cover all the outside walls, and the 6 grades allow free movement up and down the sides. No matter how you feel about a player, a run through the Test will paint a more complete picture of your opinion than you can manage from the unTested ground of subjective guesswork and confusing analytics.

Fact-based opinion, mind you, not fact. It’s your Test, your rules – but their Test, their rules, too. The Test can’t tell you if Willie Mays was better than Mickey Mantle any more than a systematic grading system for music will tell you if Beethoven was better than Bon Jovi, or a systematic feminine allure scale will tell you if Raquel Welch was hotter than Kate Upton. The Test frames the argument, but it has no interest in settling the argument.

THE QUESTIONS

“Roger “Doc” Cramer played for 20 seasons … and had 2,705 lifetime hits. If he doesn’t belong in the Hall of Fame, I don’t know who does!” – Scott Lehman, Delta, Ohio in a letter to Baseball Digest, March 1981, published in The Politics of Glory.

  1. Baseball Card – Where do his career totals put him?

a. In the Top 25
b. In the top 75
c. In the top 150
d. In the top 300
e. In the top 1,000
f. In the Navy

The first question looks at cumulative numbers. Fangraphs, Baseball Reference and a number of other websites have elaborate statistical databases you can use, or you can use an Encyclopedia. Any reputable source works, including the back of a baseball card.

I like to look at everything and grade the players on a balance of statistical evidence. If your player ranks in the top 150 in most categories he’s a C, in the top 75 a B, and so on. Some players rank about the same in everything, but you have to strike a balance for the rest.

Doc Cramer ranks 67 in hits, 105 in runs scored and in the top 200 in doubles and triples. Most outsider arguments (“my guy should be in because”) focus on the player’s best feature. If a player has one attractive statistic, that’s the one that gets perfumed, buffed and presented in a low cut dress.

If the rest of Cramer’s statistical profile was as good as his hit total, he would have been put on the list decades ago. And if Phyllis Diller could sing she wouldn’t have owned so many ugly hats.

  1. Baseball Reference – According to the metrics, where is he?

In the Top 30
b. In the top 90
c. In the top 180
d. In the top 400
e. In the top 1,000
f. Standing next to Waldo

“Bobby Grich’s 125 OPS+ (OBP+SLG adjusted to his era and ballpark) is higher than eight second basemen who have plaques in Cooperstown.” – 10 most deserving players who are not in the Hall of Fame

“In a career that spanned from 1970-86, Grich compiled a 70.9 Wins Above Replacement score — per Baseball-Reference — that ranks eighth all time at his position. His .371 on-base percentage is higher than 12 other Hall of Fame second basemen. And his OPS-plus of 125, a stat that adjusts for league and park effects, is better than 15 second basemen in Cooperstown.” – MLB.com Grich article

Many of the so-called SABRmetric crowd (the Society of American Baseball Research, baseball’s version of Comic-Con) think this is the only question that really matters. Maybe they are right. Life would be pretty boring, though, if production was all that mattered.

“For a whole generation of fans and fantasy players, stats have begun to outstrip story and that seems to me a sad thing. Even the unverifiable hogwash that passed for fact or informed opinion in baseball circles not so long ago seems today wistfully enticing, for its energy if nothing else.” – John Thorn (cite)

 

  1. Peak – At his best, he was
  2. The best of the best
    b. The best, other than that one guy who ruined the curve for everybody
    c. One of the best for a while
    d. One of the best for a moment
    e. One of the best of the rest
    f. One of the rest

“He was Ty Cobb, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Albert Pujols all wrapped into a solid 5’11”, 185 lb frame.” About Pete Reiser, by Joseph Del Grippo

I made question three vague on purpose. Peak value is a slippery concept that can provoke good, lively discussions. Why ruin it by defining it? Established peak, or whatever you call “at his best,” is whatever you can prove it is. Your Test, your rules.

Pete Reiser had one of the all-time great what-if careers in the game’s history. He was a truly great player for a moment so short that he could be anything from an A to an E on this question depending on how you decide to deal with length.

  1. Prime – Pick one:
  2. He should have won the MVP award in every good year
    b. He could have won the MVP award in every good year
    c. He should have been an all-star in every good year
    d. He could have been an all-star in every good year
    e. He could have been an all-star in a career year
    f. He could have saved a ton of money on his car insurance

A select few players over the years, have gotten screwed repeatedly in the MVP voting because the voters hated to vote for the same player every year. Honus Wagner, Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Rogers Hornsby, Ted Williams, Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle, Henry Aaron, Mike Schmidt, Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriquez, Barry Bonds and Mike Trout have all been the subject of countless articles, written about how the MVP should go to the best player but it rarely does. You can fill out the A tier with the players who actually won several MVP awards, like Barry Bonds (7) and the players not listed above who won 3 awards.

The B grade belongs to the players who should have won at least a couple and could have won a few if everything broke right. Frank Robinson (if he’s not an A) fits this bill, as do Joe Morgan, Hank Greenberg, George Brett, Napolean Lajoie and Ken Griffey, Jr. The C grade belongs to players who weren’t MVP contenders every year, but they were always on the all-star team and received a lot of down-ballot votes in the MVP elections.

  1. Rate – Ignoring volume, he is
  2. In the Top 30
    b. In the top 90
    c. In the top 180
    d. In the top 400
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. Alarmingly concave

Question 5 is the counterpoint to question one, which rewards volume. By rate I mean the slash statistics: batting average, onbase percentage and slugging. Babe Ruth “slashed” .342-.474-.690 over his 22-year career. He ranks, respectively, tenth, second and first on the career lists. For contrast, Ray Oyler slashed .175-.258-.251 in his 6-year career. He ranks lower than Babe Ruth on the career lists. He doesn’t rank all that much higher than Doctor Ruth (Westheimer) on the career lists.

If you prefer you can use a version of adjusted onbase percentage+slugging percentage (ops) compared to league averages (usually listed as ops+). I’ll use all four categories when I run my guinea pigs through the Test.

  1. Position – He was in (or on) his position’s
  2. Throne
    b. Mt. Rushmore
    c. Sweet 16
    d. American Top 40
    e. Hot 100
    f. Do not resuscitate list

Question 6 – “Bid McPhee qualifies for Cooperstown ad nauseam. In just about everyone one of his eighteen years before 1900, he ranked as the best second baseman around. – Bob Carroll, “For the Hall of Fame: Twelve Good Men” – The National Pastime, Winter 1985 (POG)

There are a number of ways to sort the candidates for this category. You can use one of the various forms of WAR, the career methods from question one, or you can invent your own. You can lean on Pete Palmer’s linear weights formulas, or you can lean on the positional top-100 rankings published in The New Bill James Historical Abstract in 2001. You can rank them by shoe size, or you can rank them by salary adjusted to the stock market index.

As always it’s your Test, your rules. Be prepared for the inevitable blowback, though. Some outlets don’t consider shoe size an official statistic.

  1. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?

They voted him in right away, and somebody complained because he wasn’t unanimous
b. They elected him within 2-3 years
c. The BBWAA elected him
d. An old-timers committee elected him
e. He got at least one vote from the BBWAA or an old-timers committee
f. Like a fool, mean and cruel

If you are grading an old timer you can simply use his own Hall of Fame voting history. It would be strange to claim a player like Johnny Mize deserves a B grade when it took the writers 25 years to get around to electing him to the Hall of Fame. Some players like him, and honestly no better than him, have been elected fairly quickly, though. If you want to argue that Mize was shafted in the voting and that he deserves a higher grade, you can certainly do that. I might make that argument myself.

If a player hasn’t been on the ballot yet, or has only been on it a short time, you need to find comparable players (comps) to argue his case. Some sites lists statistical comps, but if you want to use those comps be prepared for some resistance. Statistical comps on most of the big database websites are not adjusted for the myriad ways the game has changed over the years, and they often don’t adjust for position played.

For example, Baseball Reference lists Sammy Sosa as Mike Schmidt’s second closest comp. By the basic numbers they might be similar, but in real life they weren’t similar at all. Sosa was a right fielder. Schmidt was a third baseman. Sosa never won a gold glove award. Schmidt won 10. Sosa hit at least 60 homers 3 times without leading the league, while Schmidt led the league in homeruns 6 times with totals under 40. Schmidt led the major leagues in homeruns 8 times, Sosa twice.

It’s your Test, your rules – so make any argument you think you can win – but a losing argument is a pointless argument. To find the best comps, I recommend you compare league-adjusted statistics like ops+ and things that are naturally regulated, like the results of awards voting. Bill James has said on a number of occasions that one of the best indicators of greatness is uniqueness. The better the player is, the harder it is going to be to find a perfect comp.

  1. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?
  2. Throw out his garbage
    b. Throw out a runner
    c. Throw out his wife
    d. Throw out his back
    e. Throw out his probation officer
    f. Throw out a Kardashian

Don’t overthink it; remember ESPN camping on Bret Favre’s lawn, reporting several times a day about whether or not he looked like he was coming back, for the baseline on how famous a sports figure can get. The most famous players have regular beat writers following them around, shooting pictures of their cars as they drive away, and – in extreme cases – sorting through their trash cans.

The B players don’t get as much attention, but they are usually the first locker the writers stop by after the day’s game. The C and D players will get their share of postgame attention from the beat writers, but the C players will get the occasional magazine spread and a bigger sendoff when they retire.

  1. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?
  2. A chapter
    b. A chapter section
    c. A page
    d. A paragraph
    e. A sentence
    f. A bribe

Bill James calls them footprints (cite – I think it’s in the 1990 baseball book). Most players leave some sort of mark on the game; for most it’s a small mark – maybe a key hit in a pennant race or a running catch to cost another player a batting title – but a Hall of Fame contender will have left deep, permanent footprints on the game.

Take stock of a player’s regular season achievements – all-star games, gold gloves, larger awards, lead leading totals in high profile categories, etc. – and postseason achievements. A single homerun at just the right moment can be more important than several hundred that have been largely forgotten. Was the player responsible for rules changes, or equipment changes? Did he change how the game was played, or epitomize his era in some lasting way? Was he part of the game’s stories told, the lore of the game? Question 8 asks if a player was famous; question 9 asks if the player is (or should be) remembered.

  1. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

A- Pointless
B- Deluded
C- Exclusive
D- Behind
E- Discerning
F- Closed

Again, don’t overthink it. If the Hall of Fame literally could not exist without him, he is probably an A. If the Hall of Fame couldn’t sleep for all the whining they heard from the media before he was elected, he smells like a B. If your neighborhood small-Hall advocates are the only people that hate him, he’s a C. If your neighborhood big-Hall advocates are the only ones that love him, he’s a D.

Add them together and divide by 10 to get his grade point average. A player’s GPA defines his level on the Hall of Fame scale – which bears a striking resemblance to the grading scale for the questions:

4.0 – A player

3.0 – B player

2.0 – C player

1.0 – D player

0.0 – thanks for coming

The decimal points allow for an extra layer of give and take. If a player grades out at 1.8 you can argue that he is better than another player who grades out at 1.9, or even 2.0 or 2.1. It might be a stretch to argue that your 1.8 graded player is better than another’s 2.8, but it’s your Test, your rules. All is fair in love and the Test.

 

*****

THE TEST SUBJECTS

Adrian “Cap” Anson. The Cubs’ patriarch began his career with the birth of the National Association in 1871, and he didn’t hang ’em up until 1897. He played through the myriad rule changes and league upheavals of the 1880s and the war with the Player’s League in 1890. He was a controversial, larger-than-life force of baseball nature who played so long ago that the statistics are almost as fuzzy as the memories. His case is one of the most difficult to nail down, and he will help us grab a mental picture of the 19th century game.

Pete Rose. Like Anson, Rose was the most famous player of his time. Unlike Anson, Rose played recently; older fans can conjure up a detailed image of him, and YouTube can fill in the gaps for the younger generation. He played forever at a high level, but not the highest level, so while it will be easy to grade him on volume it will be tough to grade him on the height of his career (what I call peak value). His case will help us get a feel for how we weigh peak value (height) versus career value (volume).

Willie McGee. The two-time batting champ and 1985 MVP, McGee was a good player for a long time but not widely considered a great player. His case borders many of the lines drawn between grades – providing a glimpse at the lines – and seeing a player with an admirable resume come up short will remind us that the Hall of Fame isn’t just a gold watch, given out for good attendance.

Chuck Klein. The Depression-era Phillies star put up eye-popping numbers, won an MVP award and earned a triple crown during his years in the Baker Bowl – but became an ordinary player when he left. His case will allow me to address extreme splits between home and road statistics and high- and low- offensive eras. His short, dynamic career will also provide the yin to Rose’s yang in the volume versus rate stats discussion.

Willie McCovey. The Hall of Fame Giants first baseman played during one of the worst eras for his skillset, spent the first few years of his career competing with another Hall of Famer – Orlando Cepeda – and spent the last decade of his career fighting crippling foot injuries. Despite all that, he played for 22 years and retired with over 500 homeruns. His truncated, oft-interrupted yet brilliant career will straddle so many grading lines that we will all wish he had better feet.

Orlando Cepeda. The Baby Bull began his career like he was headed for the Pantheon – he was still on pace to match Henry Aaron’s career homerun total six years into his career – but he didn’t age well and he had some post-career problems. Still, he won the 1967 MVP award unanimously and managed to get into the Hall of Fame through the BBWAA on his final attempt. We will find him in the vicinity of the line between C and D on most questions.

1

My first table lists our six guinea pigs with their respective ranks in a few counting categories. The adjusted bases category is the only one you can’t get off of the mainstream websites. It’s a form of gross offensive production I like to play around with. I explain the formula in the footnotes here.(footnote)

Table 1.

Category

 

 

Name

Plate

Appear

ances

Hits Home

Runs

Runs Rbi Total

Bases

Walks Extra

Base

Hits

Times

On

Base

 

Adjusted

Bases

Grade
Anson 28 7 877 9 4 43 123 103 22 38 A
Rose 1 1 456 6 103 8 14 28 1 8 A
Cepeda 182 136 71 224 87 95 517 102 189 147 C
Klein 393 243 141 204 152 164 493 138 313 209 D
McCovey 105 183 20 164 44 71 34 63 84 59 B
McGee 246 166 1000+ 316 409 283 866 428 298 352 E

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. Anson’s career began in the first year of the National Association (NA) in 1871 and lasted until 1897. The NA played just 30 league games in 1871, and Anson did not play in a league with a schedule of at least 100 games until 1884, when he was 32 years old. He played 1,993 out of a possible 2,052 games in his first 22 years in the major leagues, riding to wooden, lightless stadiums in horse-drawn wagons and playing most of his career without a glove.

Pete Rose holds the major league record with 3,562 games played; had Anson played schedules of modern length he would have played in over 4,000 league games. He almost certainly played that many games overall. In the early years of professional baseball, teams played as many or more exhibition games as they played league games. Of the 50 players who played more official league games than Anson’s 2,524, the earliest one (A’s and White Sox great Eddie Collins) began his career in 1907 – 10 years after Anson retired.

Pete Rose. Rose played more games, went to the plate more often and accumulated more hits than any other major leaguer; he ranks near the top in most of the counting categories.

Orlando Cepeda. His counting stats show a clear bias toward the back end of the offensive equation where the sluggers reside, rather than the front end where the table setters live. He ranks comparatively low in runs scored, walks and times on base compared to homeruns, runs batted in and total bases. He ranks 147 in adjusted bases, near his ranking in hits. Hits is a run-neutral statistic.

Chuck Klein. Klein also leans to the back end, but not as much as Cha Cha. Cepeda was a slow, thick-legged player who lost his speed early in his career. Klein led the National League in stolen bases at 27 years old and he still ran well into his mid-30s. Klein was nearly 24 when he first came to the majors and his bat was dead by the time he was 35, so his counting stats are a little light in the seat.

Willie McCovey. Stretch started just 208 out of the Giants’ 473 games in his first 3 full seasons, 1960-62, because neither he nor Orlando Cepeda could play anywhere but first base without looking like a crippled tree sloth waddling off with Charlie Brown’s mitt. McCovey played 275 games in the outfield from 1962-64 to get both bats in the lineup. He led the National League in homeruns in 1963, but he was so bad in the field that the Giants had to carry three different Alou brothers to cover for him. In 1965 the Giants finally threw up their hands up, traded Cepeda away and planted McCovey at first base. He never played another inning in the outfield.

Willie McGee. McGee was a singles hitter who never walked, so his other ranks are way below his hit rank of 166. The ranks make McGee look like a balanced offensive player, but McGee was more a combination of self-cancelling peaks and valleys than a plateau.

2

I listed the two most prominent metrics in table 2. The first is wins above replacement, commonly known as WAR. The second, Winshares, is the brainchild of Bill James. James published the original formulas in The New Bill James Historical Abstract (Free Press 2001) and a detailed analysis and comprehensive listings in Win Shares (STATS 2002).

I used the version of WAR published on BaseballReference.com, but there a number of different versions available and more being invented all the time. Wins above replacement isn’t a formula but an idea for a formula, like a recipe for pie. WAR can be baked into as many forms as there are imaginations capable of tweaking the recipe. Sooner or later I’ll have my own version – come up with my own recipe – but for now I will rely on one of the precooked recipes available at the corner market.

Of all the new frontiers in the statistical analysis of baseball, the wildest frontier of all is not a new one, but an old one. Defensive statistics have been kept, or have been updated through herculean efforts like Project Scoresheet, since the beginning of organized professional baseball in 1871. Unfortunately, it took the statisticians over a hundred years to figure out what they needed to count – and by then it was too late to go back and ask the ghosts of Grantland Rice and Francis Richter to change their scorecards.

Offensive statistics can be subdivided into single bases, which allows for some remarkably accurate metric analysis. Defensive statistics, though – not so much. Because of this I prefer to deal with defense independently.

Winshares includes defense, so I separated it out where I could. The numbers in parenthesis are rankings with the defense removed. I could not remove defense from Klein or McGee because James only published breakdowns for the top 300.

 

Table 2.

Player WAR

Rank

(BR)

Win

Shares

rank

Grade
Anson 23 45(35) B
Rose 29 11(15) A
Cepeda 163 123(75) C
Klein 188 273* D
McCovey 52 34(27) B
McGee 412 321* E

* –  estimated

 

 

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. Anson makes the top 30 in WAR but he ranks quite a ways out of the top 25 according to Winshares. James put what he called a timeline adjustment into the Winshares formula that duns players from the distant past, plus Anson’s case has to be adjusted for all those missed games. Still, it’s a long way from 30 to 45, or even to his offense-only rank of 35.

Pete Rose. If the Test is a decathlon, Rose is dominating the early events that are his specialty. His was the longest career ever, so should be expected to do well on the volume-based questions.

Orlando Cepeda. I didn’t count defense, but defense counts. Without defense, Cepeda would be a borderline B according to Winshares.

Chuck Klein. Winshares lists include pitchers, so I had to separate pitchers out of all the rankings. In Klein’s case, since he didn’t make the top 300, I had to guess how many pitchers were ahead of him beyond the top 300. There were 72 pitchers in the top 300 (24 percent) and Klein was ranked 359, so I moved him up 24 percent of 359, or 86 spots. I did the same thing with McGee below, moving him up 101 spots.

Klein’s ranking includes defense – I couldn’t remove it since it wasn’t listed – and the timeline adjustment. Both measurements would move him up from his rank of 273, so I see no reason why he wouldn’t qualify for his D grade.

Willie McCovey. Without defense McCovey isn’t all that far from an A grade according to Winshares, but (1) defense counts and (2) stretching for a chair ain’t the same thing as sitting comfortably. An A grade would be a stretch – even for Stretch.

Willie McGee. McGee looks a little bit like E.T., the Extra Terrestrial. Who is his cellphone provider?

3(Peak)

Table 3

Name Grade
Anson B
Rose B
Cepeda C
Klein C
McCovey B
McGee D

 

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. Anson was the face of 19th century baseball and the biggest figure in the game, but he was not necessarily the best player in the game. There were no MVP awards in his time to define how his peers saw him, and the game was very different from the game we are used to seeing. It’s easy to figure out how famous Anson the public figure was, but it isn’t as easy to get a handle on how dominant Anson the player was.

Anson was a huge man for his time – BaseballReference lists him at 227 pounds and he was always in shape – and he likely would have hit a lot of homeruns in an era when homeruns were valued. He hit a total of 5 homeruns in the first 13 years of his career, but the Chicago owners moved the fences in for the 1884 season and he hit 21. The dominant statistical category in Anson’s time was batting average, and Anson led the National League in batting average 4 times, including back-to-back when he was in his mid-30s.

Still, while he was unquestionably the best player in the league over an extended time, he was never clearly the best player in the league at any one time.

Pete Rose. Rose won the MVP in 1973 and hit over .300 monotonously, but like Anson he was one of the best, not necessarily the best.

Orlando Cepeda. There were a couple of moments when Cepeda might have been the best player in the league, but they were fleeting and probably an illusion. He won the 1967 MVP award unanimously despite competition from 1966 MVP Roberto Clemente, who put up superficially better numbers, and perennial contenders Henry Aaron and Willie Mays. I don’t think a reasonable argument can be made that Cepeda was ever better than those three players, and it might be hard to argue that he was ever really better than his old teammate Willie McCovey.

Chuck Klein. Klein’s MVP voting record indicates at least a B grade, and he won a triple crown. Had he played in a neutral park I would just give him the B and move on, but his peak was largely an illusion. Klein hit over .400

Willie McCovey. McCovey was the 1969 National League MVP, and arguably the best player in the league between 1968 and 1970. If that makes him an A for you, I’m fine with it. Unfortunately, there are more than 25 players who can fit that criteria (the best player in the league over a 3-year period) who have better surrounding evidence of their dominance. McCovey was a devastating offensive player who made pitchers whimper and drove first basemen to their life insurance agents, but he had bad feet and little defensive value.

His best historical comp might be Hank Greenberg, the Tiger star of the 1930s. Greenberg won a pair of MVP awards, put up a 58 homerun season and set the American League single-season record for runs batted in, but he was the third best first baseman in an 8-team league. Those A grades are hard to get; there are only 25 of them in each category, to cover nearly 150 years of baseball history.

Willie McGee. I didn’t realize it when I chose my 6-pack of Test subjects, but they all won a single MVP award except Anson, who played before MVPs were awarded. McGee’s 1985 season may have been one of the 150 best seasons ever, but it’s hard to quantify it. According to WAR his 1985 WAR total ranks 252 on the list. Winshares ranks his 1985 season in a tie for 215 since 1900 and well out of the top 300 overall.

I graded him a D because of his 1985 MVP award and two batting titles, but a systematic analysis would probably take it away and leave him with another E grade.

4

Table 4.

Name Grade
Anson B
Rose B
Cepeda D
Klein D
McCovey D
McGee E

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. I doubt Anson would have won a bunch of MVP awards – or deserved them – but he would have probably won a couple and he would have been the face on the cover of the “who is it going to be this year?” magazines in a lot of years.

Pete Rose. I don’t think of Rose as a perennial MVP contender, but only 19 players have drawn more MVP votes than he did and he finished in the top 5 in the voting 5 times.

Orlando Cepeda. The thumb rule for this question is we are measuring a player’s prime period, not his peak – that was question 3 – so winning an MVP doesn’t give a player extra credit. Cepeda also finished second, several years before he won, but that was it. He was only an MVP contender twice. He was an all-star several times, and it’s a close call whether he deserves to rank as a C or if his poor showing after 1967 should lower his grade to a D. By the spirit of the question I think the D is warranted. While he could have been an all-star in most of his good years, I don’t think it’s accurate to say he should have.

Chuck Klein. One of the constant balancing acts every Hall of Fame discussion is the weighing of quantity versus quality. Klein goes down without much of a fight when we are talking about the total value of his career – total=total – but defining “prime” isn’t as obvious. Klein put up huge numbers for a very short time, then played at what appeared to be a much lower level for several years after. If we didn’t know better we might think something happened to him in 1934, but we know that wasn’t the case.

In Klein’s case there is a handy statistic that helps tell us the story of his prime: onbase plus slugging (ops+). Klein’s ops+ with the Phillies from 1928-34 was 160. He moved to the Cubs and Wrigley Field – another good hitters park – in 1934 and his ops+ numbers over the next few years were 136, 123, 124, 130 (back in the Baker Bowl), 81 and 127. Ignoring the off-season in 1938, Klein’s typical ops+ was in the mid-120s outside of the Baker Bowl. If we give him full credit for his Baker Bowl awards showing he qualifies for a D grade, but the drop-off after he moved to Chicago means a C is out of the question.

Willie McCovey. With the exception of his 1968-70 stretch he wasn’t a serious MVP candidate, and he only played in 6 all-star games. McCovey’s prime was cut to ribbons by playing time issues early and injuries late. In the decathlon scenario, this is Stretch’s weakest category.

Willie McGee. McGee played in 4 all-star games, but I doubt he could have made more than a couple more at the absolute most. Most years he was just a good, solid everyday player.

5

For our purposes I’ll define “regular” as 3 plate appearances per team game. This means 462 plate appearances in a 154 game season and 486 in a 162 game season. We’ll deal with Cap Anson when we get to him.

Table 5 lists our candidates and their respective hours on the gerbil wheel. I’ll explain the asterisks in their individual comments.

Table 5.

Name Tot

years

Reg-

ular

All-

star

Grade
Anson 27 26 ?* A
Rose 24 22 18 A
Cepeda 17 13 7 D
Klein 17 10 6* D
McCovey 22 9 6 D
McGee 18 10 4 E

 

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. He missed regular status in all 27 of his seasons by a single plate appearance in 1984, when he was 42 years old. I think Rose ranks second in that category – seasons as a regular – with 22.

Anson’s career predated the all-star game, so I can’t really say how many games he would have gotten into. My guess is all of them. He was Reggie Jackson, Pete Rose and David Ortiz wrapped into one loud, blustery package. An all-star game without him would have been unthinkable. With his attendance record and love of attention, there is little chance he would have skipped one.

By merit he probably would have played in over 20. He finished in the league’s top 10 in batting average 22 times, and that was the first statistic everyone looked at.

Pete Rose. Rose played in 16 consecutive all-star games (1967-1982) and qualified as a regular in each of his first 21 seasons.

Orlando Cepeda. Cepeda has been landing just over the C/D line, but this time he lands just short. He was remarkably durable for most of his career, qualifying as a regular in 12 of his first 13 seasons, but that was about it. The birth of the designated hitter position in 1973 game him one more season as a regular batter, but he only played 85 games in the field during his final four seasons.

Chuck Klein. I credited him with all-star appearances from 1929-1932 in addition to the pair he played in. He clearly would have been on those teams.

Willie McCovey. He was an all-star or an MVP candidate every year he qualified as a regular – and a couple of times when he didn’t – until he was 35 years old.

Willie McGee. He wasn’t that far from a D grade, but it’s been that way his whole Test. He was a really good E player, but not quite a D player.

6

I like to begin with James’ positional top-100 rankings, and adjust for anything about his rankings I disagree with. Table 6 lists each player’s ranking according to James, along with my adjusted rank. Since the book came out in 2001, the last 15 years have to be accounted for.

 

Table 6.

Name Position James

rank

Updated

rank

Grade
Anson First base 11 4 B
Rose Right field 5 5 C
Cepeda First base 17 20 D
Klein Right field 40 46 E
McCovey First base 9 11 C
McGee Center Field 43 53 E

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. I don’t imagine I got away with palming that card. James has Anson ranked 11 in his book, and there have been a couple of new players who belong in the top 10 since then, but I moved him all the way up to the fourth spot. There are three things James does in his rankings that I don’t do in mine.

First, James does not count the National Association as a major league. Second, James “charges” the players from the distant past with a timeline penalty. Third, James makes no allowances for the shortened schedules in the 19th century. All three serve to drive Anson’s value into the ground.

My top 4:

  1. Lou Gehrig
  2. Albert Pujols
  3. Jimmy Foxx
  4. Cap Anson

Pete Rose. James ranks Rose in right field (I dare Tom Brokaw to say that three times fast), but he played all over the place. Rose played at least 500 games at first base, second base, third base, left field and right field. Right field is a stacked position, with Babe Ruth, Henry Aaron, Frank Robinson and Mel Ott ahead of Rose, but I looked around the other positions and I’m not sure there is one where he would crack the top 4 without give him a pretty hefty mulligan for his lack of defensive value. I could be talked into giving him a B anyway, though. Nobody else came anywhere near his level of versatility.

Orlando Cepeda. I moved Miguel Cabrera, Albert Pujols and Jim Thome ahead of him from James’ list. There are a couple of others I would also move ahead of him by removing their timeline penalty – Dan Brouthers, Roger Conner, George Sisler – but Cepeda would still get the same D grade.

Chuck Klein. Klein was holding on to his D grade by his fingernails as it was. The influx of new candidates pushed him into the E range. Right field is a stacked position.

Willie McCovey. I thought about moving McCovey up a couple of spots but the choices are close and it won’t affect his grade. He would be a C either way.

Willie McGee. There have been a lot of good center fielders in the 21st century, if not very many great ones. A top-20 center fielder might have only moved down the list a spot or two, but McGee dropped 10 spots.

  1. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?

Table 7.

Name Elected Years

On the

ballot

Comps-

Years

On the

Ballot

Grade
Anson 1939 1+ 1-3 B
Rose Ineligible N/A 1 A
Cepeda 1999 15+ 15 D
Klein 1980 15+ 15+ D
McCovey 1986 1 1-3 B
McGee Not elected N/A N/A E

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. Anson retired in 1897, nearly 40 years before the inaugural Veterans Committee election in 1936. He tied 19th century catching great Buck Ewing for the most votes with 39.5 out of 78 (50.6 percent), well short of the 75 percent needed to be elected. The Hall’s centennial celebration in1939 was set to go off without any 19th century players involved, so a small committee – Commissioner Kennesaw Landis, National League President Ford Frick and American League President Will Harridge – chose 3 players: Anson, Ewing and Charles “Old Hoss” Radbourne, a 300-game winner who won a league record 59 games in 1884.

In cases like this, where the player’s Hall of Fame induction came under unusual circumstances, I like to find his best comps and see how the Hall of Fame treated them. Since Anson’s best comp is Pete Rose (who isn’t eligible for the Hall of Fame) we might need to move to number 2.

Anson’s closest historical comps, according to BasebalReference, are (1) all in the Hall of Fame but (2) not all that comparable. Anson’s rankings in most categories place him in groups of players who have been elected to the Hall of Fame without a lot of resistance, but he doesn’t rank up there with the unanimous candidates.

His best comps are the high average hitters with 3000 hits, like Rod Carew and Tony Gwynn, though Anson would likely have been a power hitter had he played in another era. Any subjective guess, from Roberto Clemente to Frank Robinson to Henry Aaron, would be what it is – one man’s unsupported opinion.

Pete Rose. Rose is not eligible for the Hall of Fame because he is on baseball’s ineligible list. The Hall of Fame rarely intervenes directly in the selection rules – they have never shown the slightest interest in who gets elected – but they made a point to tell the voters that Rose would not be eligible until he is reinstated to baseball’s eligible list in 1991, when his name would have first appeared on the ballot. The hue and cry surrounding his candidacy, even after 30 years, tells you all you need to know. Had he been eligible and untainted by scandal, he would have been a near-unanimous selection.

Orlando Cepeda. Cepeda received 73.5 percent of the vote in 1994 – his final year of BBWAA elgibility – and was elected by the Veterans Committee the first year they got a shot at him. His closest historical comp is probably Tony Perez, the first baseman on the Big Red Machine. Perez was elected by the BBWAA in his final year of eligibility. Between Perez and Cepeda lies the line between C and D. I gave Cha Cha a D because he wasn’t elected by the BBWAA, but it would be silly to argue against a C grade. He was less than 2 percent short.

Chuck Klein. Klein was never a popular candidate during his BBWAA years, topping out at 28.9 percent in 1964. He was elected by the Veterans Committee in 1980 as the meat in a slugger sandwich elected between 1979 and 1981. Hack Wilson, a Klein contemporary, was elected in 1979 and Johnny Mize – who frankly should have been elected sooner – was elected in 1981.

Klein has a number of close comps, some of them in the Hall of Fame and some of them still waiting. His best comp might be Bobby Bonds, Barry’s father and the first of the San Francisco Giants’ run of players dubbed “the next Willie Mays.” ESSAY – Klein’s Comps

Willie McCovey. McCovey was elected right away, and his closest comps – Hank Greenberg, Jimmy Foxx, maybe Eddie Mathews – were all elected quickly. A B grade seems obvious.

Willie McGee. He isn’t in the Hall of Fame and none of his good comps are in, but his case isn’t a complete joke. He won 2 batting titles, 3 gold glove awards and an MVP. He was part of a famous team – the 1980s Cardinals, who reached the World Series 3 times between 1982 and 1987 – and he played long enough to reach a few milestone numbers. His best player comp might be Curt Flood, the Cardinals’ center fielder from the 1960s. Flood may make the Hall of Fame eventually for his role in eliminating baseball’s reserve clause, but he never built up a head of steam in the BBWAA voting.

  1. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?

Table 8.

Name Grade
Anson A
Rose A
Cepeda C
Klein C
McCovey C
McGee D

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. Question 8 can be tricky for some players, but not this one. Anson was the face of baseball between 1880 and the 1895. He was a force of nature, dominating everyone and everything he touched, and he was a natural and enthusiastic showman. He began his career as the Marshalltown Infant, grew into “Cap” for captain and eventually morphed into “Pop” toward the end of his 27-year career. The Chicago team in the National League was nicknamed the Cubs because of Anson. He was Pops – and they were his cubs.

Pete Rose. He hasn’t worn a baseball uniform since 1989 (officially anyway, I don’t know what he wears around his house) but he is still one of the most famous players in the game. Rose and Reggie Jackson were the most famous players of the 1970s and 1980s, and Rose always seemed to be in the news for one thing or the other until the scandal that cost him his career, his reputation, and his eligibility for the Hall of Fame.

Orlando Cepeda. Cepeda is unusual in that he had two distinct nicknames (Cha Cha and The Baby Bull) but he wasn’t one of the most famous players in the game. He was famous, but not so much as a dominant force as he was a character – what baseball writers call “colorful,” like Manny Ramirez more recently.

Cha Cha was always a little thick – late in his career his butt was wide enough to advertise on –  and he a notoriously bad sign reader. His manager in San Francisco, Alvin Dark, developed a reputation for being racist against Latino players because of his exasperation with Cha Cha’s sign-reading adventures. He was a popular teammate once he got away from San Francisco, and he won the 1967 MVP award in part because of his popularity.

Grading a subjective question like question 8 can be an adventure. I recommend that you make sure your numerical balance is in line with the rest of the Test. It’s easy to overrate (or underrate) how famous these players were, and wind up with, say, 55 A’s, 100 B’s and 40 C’s.

I’ve spent enough time grading players to know that players generally earn about as much fame as they earn anything else. The exceptions – Roger Maris or Catfish Hunter going one way, Darrell or Dwight Evans going the other way – tend to jump off the page. I designed the Test with the more objective questions towards the top and the more subjective questions toward the bottom because of this.

By the time you get to question 8 you will have a pretty good idea where you think the player ranks. If you think he was more famous than his stats, you can bump him up a grade. If he was one of those players – like Evans, either Darrell or Dwight – who wasn’t as famous as he probably should have been – Reggie Smith in the shadow of Reggie! Jackson, for example – you can drop him a grade. If there is no reason to go either way, you can just match his fame grade – and his impact and relevance grades – to his overall grade. There is no reason to overthink it.

Chuck Klein. Klein was about as famous in his time as Cha Cha was in his, and had his peak lasted a little longer he might deserve a B grade, too. It will help you a lot, if you grade a bank of players, to double check yourself horizontally to make sure you have a good balance.

Willie McCovey. Cepeda and McCovey were practically a matched set with the Giants, and they each won an MVP and a great deal of respect after they were separated. McCovey is more famous now because of McCovey Cove behind the right field wall at Pac Bell Stadium, but while they were active they were both in that gray area between the B – where the really famous guys hang out – and C grade. I gave them both C grades in this exercise, but I might give them both B grades next time. Subjective grades are slippery.

Willie McGee. I am sure McGee is a D on this question. He wasn’t substantial enough to be a C – his MVP award notwithstanding – but he was far too famous to be an E. If there is such a thing as the geographical center of the D grade for prominence, I would bet McGee lived on the same street.

  1. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?

Table 9.

Name Grade
Anson A
Rose A
Cepeda C
Klein C
McCovey B
McGee D

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. Modern research tools make Anson a tempting biographical subject. He wasn’t just a substantial player and a forceful, theatrical personality. He was at the center of any number of significant events in baseball history, not all of them good. Bill James once suggested that Anson may have been the most important figure in making the National League the top league, and making baseball a popular entertainment. (cite)

Pete Rose. It’s impossible to properly explain the legend of Pete Rose in anything short of a full chapter. Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Ty Cobb and Pete Rose are the Mt. Rushmore of 20th century baseball legends. The stories told about them alone could fill the next Ed Burns 18-hour documentary.

Orlando Cepeda. A paragraph would not do him justice, but a page should be plenty.

Chuck Klein. The Patron Saint of park illusions, Klein may not have earned his place in the game’s lore directly, but it would take a page to tell his story.

Willie McCovey. I would have to do a full count to be sure, but I suspect McCovey might deserve an A grade on the impact question. Who else has a body of water named after him?

Willie McGee. It’s hard to win an MVP award and not need a paragraph, and McGee did other things besides win the 1985 MVP award.

  1. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

Table 10.

Name Grade
Anson B
Rose A
Cepeda C
Klein D
McCovey B
McGee E

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson. There are some people who think the 19th century wasn’t real baseball, and there are enough of them that an argument can be made that Anson isn’t 100 percent vital to the Hall of Fame’s existence. It may not be pointless without him – just delusional.

Pete Rose. I might argue that he deserves a not applicable grade on the question, since he isn’t eligible, but there isn’t any reason to Test him in the first place unless we set aside reality and pretend he is allowed to be considered. If he’s eligible, he’s a must-have.

Orlando Cepeda. The difference between a C grade (exclusive) and a D grade (behind) comes from the small-Hall argument. The small-Hall advocates –the exclusivists – want to limit the Hall of Fame to about one player for every year or so, and they usually begin in 1901. A C grade player might be inside the leather if he’s at the top of the grade, but Cha Cha is toward the bottom, so he would fall short of the exclusive club.

The debaters who fall in between the exclusivists and the inclusivists – we’ll call them the realists – are mostly ok with the number on the real Hall of Fame’s list. They may wish the number was a little smaller – 200 is a popular number – but they are, for the most part, ok with the current total of 315 members. Let’s look at the ranges.

  • Exclusivists: 100-150
  • Realists: 200-300
  • Inclusivists: 400-7.2 billion

There are gray areas in there that don’t have their own –ist designation, but the debaters tend to paint in broad strokes. Nobody argues between 140 and 170; it’s either 100, 300 or 800.

Cepeda best fits the C grade definition. If he’s missing, they are exclusive. The C grade players would all be in a Hall of Fame that was behind, because the missing players would be D grade players. Remember question 7; by definition C grade players get elected by the BBWAA within 15 (now 10) years of becoming eligible. If the Hall of Fame hasn’t gotten to him, he’s almost certainly a D or lower.

The only obvious exceptions are players who were never on the BBWAA ballot (Negro League and foreign players) and perhaps a couple of players from the early, primordial ooze days of baseball.

Chuck Klein. Klein waited 36 years to be selected. He was a reasonable choice, but so were others – some of whom are still waiting – and there is no sense of urgency in getting to them.

Willie McCovey. It would take an awfully exclusive club to leave Stretch out, and there would be picketing in the parking lot.

Willie McGee. The Hall of Fame has elected a few players no better than Willie McGee, but only a few and they have been widely mocked as bad selections. McGee will need the voters to loosen their belts a couple more notches to get on the waiting list.

Recap

 

 

 

 

Name Card Value Peak Prime Rate Pos. Resp. Fame Impact Rel. GPA
Anson A B B B A B B A A B 3.4
Rose A A B B A C A A A A 3.6
Cepeda C C C D D D D C C C 1.6
Klein D D C D D E D C C D 1.2
McCovey B B B D D C B C B B 2.4
McGee E E D E E E E D D E 0.3

 

Adrian “Cap” Anson (3.4) Anson’s Test is subject to a wider degree of variance than most A or B level players. He played during the game’s infancy, and much of the competition he dominated wasn’t all that good; some might question whether his numbers deserve the same respect they would had he posted them more recently. Anson’s personality was so big that it would be strange to discount it, but one man’s charismatic promotor is another man’s overbearing blowhard. Anson was universally known, but he certainly wasn’t universally liked.

I ignored his controversial race-related actions when I Tested him, but others may make a big deal out of role in establishing the color line. It’s not my place to tell you how to deal with the Hall of Fame’s cryptic character clause.

Pete Rose (3.6) Speaking of the character clause … it’s up to you how to deal with players like Rose and Shoeless Joe Jackson, who are ineligible for the Hall of Fame. I’ve heard the argument that they should get F’s on questions 7, 9 and 10 because they are ineligible (7, 10) or violated the character clause (9).

Orlando Cepeda (1.6) The lines between grades are at the .5 marks. Let’s look at it:

A: 3.5-4.0

B: 2.5-3.4

C: 1.5-2.4

D: 0.5-1.4

A solid C players, like Expo speedster Tim Raines or the Astros’ star second baseman Craig Biggio, will usually grade out between 1.8 and 2.2. The borderline C players like Cepeda tend to grade out around 1.5.

Chuck Klein (1.2) A straight D grade (1.0) represents a 50 percent chance of making the Hall of Fame. Klein graded just above that on this run through the Test, meaning he should have been more likely than not to make the list.

Willie McCovey (2.4) The B level may be the most difficult to define, because B players are known more for what they are not than what they are. The A, B and D grades all have specific identifying characteristics. A players are the best of the best. C players are the borderline BBWAA choices. D players are the starts of the old timer committees. B players are loosely defined as “too good to be C’s but not good enough to be A’s.”

Willie McGee (0.3) A player who earns a D grade on a single question – a 0.1 GPA – is theoretically a viable Hall of Fame candidate. McGee’s 0.3 sounds terrible, but it puts McGee among the top 400 or so position players in the game’s history.

 

TEST Verducci quotes and info

 

Tom Verducci on Vlad Guerrero: He hit .318 with 449 home runs. Here is the entire list of players who have done that: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Ted Williams, Stan Musial and Guerrero, the only man born in the past 95 years to do so.

On Jeff Kent (same article): Kent hit more home runs (377), drove in 100 runs more times (eight) and batted cleanup more times (1,296) than any second baseman in history

On Fred McGriff: Among eligible players with 10,000 plate appearances who are not connected to PEDs, McGriff is the only one not in the Hall of Fame with an OPS+ greater than 128 (his was 134) and more than 475 home runs (he had 493).

McGriff is a statistical twin of Eddie Mathews and has better numbers than Eddie Murray, both of whom are in Cooperstown. When compared to Bagwell, he has more runs, hits, home runs, RBIs, All-Star appearances and top 5 seasons in HR, OPS and Runs Created than Bagwell—and is the far superior postseason player.

Billy Wagner: Great rate stats, but Wagner never did enough heavy lifting and never changed baseball history. Wagner has the lowest ERA and lowest WHIP of any reliever with at least 900 innings except Mariano Rivera. But Wagner is tied for 141st all-time for saves of more than three outs—just 36, fewer than Armando Benitez and Frank DiPino.

 

Test Questions – the explanation

The rules for the Test:

Rule one: It’s your Test, your rules.

Rule two: There is no second rule.

You can use whatever criteria you like to state your opinion – all the Test does is give you a framework you can use to present it. As a guideline – not a rule, just a word of advice – if you want to convince anyone else your opinion is the right one, you need to make sure you have one foot within shouting distance of the prevailing opinion – or a powerful argument to back you up.

But still – it’s your Test, your rules.

The Test’s 10 questions, taken together, generate a grade point average that defines each player’s position in the Hall of Fame pecking order. The top 30 GPAs fill the Pantheon, then the next 60 the VIP club, and so on. To explain how the Test questions work, I will run six players through the Test. In the process I’ll demonstrate my thought process Keep in mind that my grades are opinions. If you don’t agree with them, you don’t have to. The Test generates organized opinions, but it can’t generate facts.

THE QUESTIONS

  1. Baseball Card – Where do his career totals put him?
  2. In the Top 30
    b. In the top 90
    c. In the top 180
    d. In the top 400
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. In the Navy

Question looks at cumulative numbers. Fangraphs, Baseball Reference and a number of other websites have elaborate statistical databases you can use, or you can use an Encyclopedia. Any reputable source works, including the back of a baseball card.

I like to look at everything and grade the players on a balance of statistical evidence. If he ranks in the top 180 in most categories he’s a C, in the top 90 a B, and so on. A few players will make your job easy by ranking about the same in everything, but for most players you have to strike a balance. It’s up to you how you balance things; your Test, your rules.

  1. Baseball Reference – According to the metrics, where is he?
  2. In the Top 30
    b. In the top 90
    c. In the top 180
    d. In the top 400
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. Standing next to Waldo
  3. Peak – At his best, he was
  4. The best of the best
    b. The best, other than that one guy who ruined the curve for everybody
    c. One of the best for a while
    d. One of the best for a moment
    e. One of the best of the rest
    f. One of the rest

I made question three vague on purpose. Peak value is a slippery concept that can provoke good, lively discussions. Why ruin it by defining it? Established peak, or whatever you call “at his best,” is whatever you can prove it is. Your Test, your rules.

  1. Prime – Pick one:
  2. He should have won the MVP award in every good year
    b. He could have won the MVP award in every good year
    c. He should have been an all-star in every good year
    d. He could have been an all-star in every good year
    e. He could have been an all-star in a career year
    f. He could have saved a ton of money on his car insurance

A select few players over the years, have gotten screwed repeatedly in the MVP voting because the voters hated to vote for the same player every year. Honus Wagner, Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Rogers Hornsby, Ted Williams, Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle, Henry Aaron, Mike Schmidt, Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriquez, Barry Bonds and Mike Trout have all been the subject of countless articles, written about how the MVP should go to the best player but it rarely does. The rest of the top 25 should probably be the players who actually won several MVP awards, like Barry Bonds (7) and the players not listed above who won 3 awards.

The B grade belongs to the players who should have won at least a couple and could have won a few if everything broke right. Frank Robinson (if he’s not an A) fits this bill, as do Joe Morgan, Hank Greenberg, George Brett, Nap Lajoie and Ken Griffey, Jr. The C grade belongs to players who weren’t necessarily MVP contenders every year, but they were always on the all-star team and received a lot of down-ballot votes.

  1. Rate – Ignoring volume, he is
  2. In the Top 30
    b. In the top 90
    c. In the top 180
    d. In the top 400
    e. In the top 1,000
    f. Alarmingly concave

Question 5 is the counterpoint to question one, which rewards volume. By rate I mean the slash statistics: batting average, onbase percentage and slugging. Babe Ruth “slashed” .342-.474-.690 over his 22-year career. He ranks, respectively, tenth, second and first on the career lists. For contrast, Ray Oyler slashed .175-.258-.251 in his 6-year career. He ranks lower than Babe Ruth on the career lists. He doesn’t rank all that much higher than Doctor Ruth (Westheimer) on the career lists.

If you prefer you can use a version of adjusted onbase percentage+slugging percentage (ops) compared to league averages (usually listed as ops+). I’ll use all four categories when I run my guinea pigs through the Test.

  1. Position – He was in (or on) his position’s
  2. Throne
    b. Mt. Rushmore
    c. Sweet 16
    d. American Top 40
    e. Hot 100
    f. Do not resuscitate list

There are a number of ways to sort the candidates for this category. You can use one of the various forms of WAR, the career methods from question one, or you can invent your own. You can lean on Pete Palmer’s linear weights formulas, or you can lean on the positional top-100 rankings published in The New Bill James Historical Abstract in 2001. You can rank them by shoe size, or you can rank them by salary adjusted to the stock market index.

As always it’s your Test, your rules. Be prepared for the inevitable blowback, though. Some outlets don’t consider shoe size an official statistic.

  1. Precedent – How did the Hall of Fame voters treat him?
  2. They voted him in right away, and somebody complained because he wasn’t unanimous
    b. They elected him within 2-3 years
    c. The BBWAA elected him
    d. An old-timers committee elected him
    e. He got at least one vote from the BBWAA or an old-timers committee
    f. Like a fool, mean and cruel

If you are grading an old timer you can simply use his own Hall of Fame voting history. It would be strange to claim a player like Johnny Mize deserves a B grade when it took the writers 25 years to get around to electing him to the Hall of Fame. Some players like him, and honestly no better than him, have been elected fairly quickly, though. If you want to argue that Mize was shafted in the voting and that he deserves a higher grade, you can certainly do that. I might make that argument myself.

If a player hasn’t been on the ballot yet, or has only been on it a short time, you need to find comparable players (comps) to argue his case. Some sites lists statistical comps, but if you want to use those comps be prepared for some resistance. Statistical comps on most of the big database websites are not adjusted for the myriad ways the game has changed over the years, and they often don’t adjust for position played.

For example, Baseball Reference lists Sammy Sosa as Mike Schmidt’s second closest comp. By the basic numbers they might be similar, but in real life they weren’t similar at all. Sosa was a right fielder. Schmidt was a third baseman. Sosa never won a gold glove award. Schmidt won 10. Sosa hit at least 60 homers 3 times without leading the league, while Schmidt led the league in homeruns 6 times with totals under 40. Schmidt led the major leagues in homeruns 8 times, Sosa twice.

It’s your Test, your rules – so make any argument you think you can win – but a losing argument is a pointless argument. To find the best comps, I recommend you compare league-adjusted statistics like ops+ and things that are naturally regulated, like the results of awards voting. Bill James has said on a number of occasions that one of the best indicators of greatness is uniqueness. The better the player is, the harder it is going to be to find a perfect comp.

  1. Prominence – What would this player have to do to make the news?
  2. Throw out his garbage
    b. Throw out a runner
    c. Throw out his wife
    d. Throw out his back
    e. Throw out his probation officer
    f. Throw out a Kardashian

Don’t overthink it; remember ESPN camping on Bret Favre’s lawn, reporting several times a day about whether or not he looked like he was coming back, for the baseline on how famous a sports figure can get. The most famous players have regular beat writers following them around, shooting pictures of their cars as they drive away, and – in extreme cases – sorting through their trash cans.

The B players don’t get as much attention, but they are usually the first locker the writers stop by after the day’s game. The C and D players will get their share of postgame attention from the beat writers, but the C players will get the occasional magazine spread and a bigger sendoff when they retire.

  1. Impact – What would it take to explain him in a history book?
  2. A chapter
    b. A chapter section
    c. A page
    d. A paragraph
    e. A sentence
    f. A bribe

Bill James calls them footprints (cite – I think it’s in the 1990 baseball book). Most players leave some sort of mark on the game; for most it’s a small mark – maybe a key hit in a pennant race or a running catch to cost another player a batting title – but a Hall of Fame contender will have left deep, permanent footprints on the game.

Take stock of a player’s regular season achievements – all-star games, gold gloves, larger awards, lead leading totals in high profile categories, etc. – and postseason achievements. A single homerun at just the right moment can be more important than several hundred that have been largely forgotten. Was the player responsible for rules changes, or equipment changes? Did he change how the game was played, or epitomize his era in some lasting way? Was he part of the game’s stories told, the lore of the game? Question 8 asks if a player was famous; question 9 asks if the player is (or should be) remembered.

  1. Relevance – If he isn’t in the Hall of Fame, the Hall of Fame is:

A- Pointless
B- Deluded
C- Exclusive
D- Behind
E- Discerning
F- Closed

Again, don’t overthink it. If the Hall of Fame literally could not exist without him, he is probably an A. If the Hall of Fame couldn’t sleep for all the whining they heard from the media before he was elected, he smells like a B. If your neighborhood small-Hall advocates are the only people that hate him, he’s a C. If your neighborhood big-Hall advocates are the only ones that love him, he’s a D.

Add them together and divide by 10 to get his grade point average. A player’s GPA defines his level on the Hall of Fame scale – which bears a striking resemblance to the grading scale for the questions:

4.0 – A player

3.0 – B player

2.0 – C player

1.0 – D player

0.0 – thanks for coming

The decimal points allow for an extra layer of give and take. If a player grades out at 1.8 you can argue that he is better than another player who grades out at 1.9, or even 2.0 or 2.1. It might be a stretch to argue that your 1.8 graded player is better than another’s 2.8, but it’s your Test, your rules. All is fair in love and the Test.

Intro to Test questions

Before we go over the individual questions, I need to explain the rules:

Rule one: it’s your Test, your rules.

Rule two: There is no second rule.

If you think Willie McGee was better than Willie McCovey, grade accordingly. If you think you can sell it (outside Willie McGee’s family) you are probably barking up the wrong mctree, but it’s your Test, your rules. If you want to argue that Roger Maris was more famous than Stan Musial, grade accordingly. If you want to argue that Ray Oyler was a better hitter than Ted Williams, grade accordingly. It’s your Test, your rules.

You may be thinking to yourself, “but what is the point in that? I can just give good grades to the players I like, and say screw you to everyone else?” Call it step one in the process. Give all your favorite players A grades, give all your sworn enemies F grades, and get it out of your system. Share your results with your friends and have a good laugh. It’s your Test, your rules.

If you want to argue your opinion, however, there is a catch: an opinion without backing evidence is worthless. You can say Eleanor Roosevelt was a beauty, but sooner or later somebody is going to produce a picture. You can claim the Pittsburgh Steelers won the 1936 World Series if you want, but it only takes a couple of mouse clicks to make you look foolish.

More esoterically, if you want to claim that Roger Maris was a B player you can, but you will have to find a way to explain away his short, oft-injured career and low career batting average. If you point at his two MVP trophies, skeptics will point to his

if you want your opinion to be accepted into evidence, you have to sell it to the judge. An opinion without supporting evidence is as worthless in a bar as it is in a courtroom. If you don’t have any evidence to back up your love of Ray Oyler, your argument will be as toothless as a band saw in a blast furnace. If you want to share your opinion, your opinio

The Test will help you sort the exhibits, but you need to get them into evidence and convince the jury of their importance. If you say Willie McGee was better than Willie McCovey, you will need to convince your skeptics that McGee’s superior speed and defensive value trumped McCovey’s ability to hit baseballs over Willie McGee’s head into McCovey Cove.

If your opinions are too far from reality they are worthless in a serious discussion, Test or no Test, but the Test can mold and refine your opinions into strong, defensible stances. If you can prove that Willie McGee was a better player than Willie McCovey you are wasting your time here – you should be arguing in front of the Supreme Court (or locked up somewhere you can never escape) – but the rest of us can use the Test to refine our loose intuition into cogent, fact-based opinion.

The Test is not the house, but the scaffolding. The 10 questions allow us to cover all the outside walls, and the 6 grades allow free movement up and down the sides. No matter how you feel about a player, a run through the Test will paint a more complete picture of your opinion than you can manage from the unTested ground of subjective guesswork and confusing analytics.

Fact-based opinion, mind you, not fact. Your Test, your rules – but their Test, their rules, too. The Test can’t tell you if Willie Mays was better than Mickey Mantle any more than a systematic grading system for music will tell you if Beethoven was better than Bon Jovi, or a systematic feminine allure scale will tell you if Raquel Welch was hotter than Kate Upton. The Test frames the argument, but it has no interest in settling the argument.

The argument can never be settled. To shamelessly misquote Shakespeare, the argument is the thing. I believe perfecting the Hall of Fame’s selection process would kill it deader than a rat in an Alaska stew pot.

Perfection isn’t always perfect. Artistically speaking, perfection is just about the worst thing that can happen. There is no resolution without dissonance, and no warmth without the specter of cold. As all good versus evil arguments go, there can’t be one without the other.

It is my opinion that the lack of perfection – the fact that the system is just a little bit illogical and disorderly – is the reason the Baseball Hall of Fame is as popular as it is. The constant arguments over what favorite got screwed, or which bozo got in that doesn’t deserve a plaque, are the lifeblood of the Hall’s popularity. It isn’t easy to maintain the public’s interest in a museum, and I would hesitate to change anything under the assumption that perfection is a desirable goal.

Have you ever owned an old car, beat to hell and rusty all over but it just won’t quit? You are a little bit afraid to fix anything, because if you fix one thing than another thing has to be fixed, and eventually you end up with a pile of rust that won’t even run anymore. I have a feeling the Hall of Fame might fall apart if we were to start replacing those old rusty parts.

Trim too much fat and the meat loses its flavor.

Subjectivity is the very lifeblood of the Hall of Fame. Without subjectivity, the arguments end. Without the arguments, the Hall of Fame’s lofty pop culture status goes away. Without that status, the Hall of Fame is just another museum.

Any attempt to sterilize the voting – in an attempt to perfect it – could be disastrous. Baseball’s museum is more popular than the other major sports museums because the baseball public feels involved in the process. Their empowerment, in my opinion, comes from the residue of ambiguity left in the wake of the Hall’s refusal to define itself.

Barstool arguments about baseball are almost always either “if I voted I sure wouldn’t have voted for that bozo” or “I think the Hall of Fame should be …” – and every fan thinks he knows something the Hall is overlooking. If the Hall made logical, clearly defined selections according to specific rules, what would we argue about? The bozos would be qualified and the Hall of Fame’s parameters would be clearly defined.

Barstool pundits could argue that the Supreme Court would work better with seven members – or that they should have to take a shot every time someone mentions Roe v. Wade – but nobody does because the Supreme Court has specific rules (don’t tell Mitch McConnell), and the pundits don’t feel like they are smarter than the Supreme Court.

The Ladies’ Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Hall of Fame eligibility process has a list of 27 criteria that must be met before a player becomes subject to a vote. The standards are so high that few players are ever eligible, so any player who makes a ballot gets voted in immediately.

If baseball’s hall followed the LPGA model, the arguments would end. The angst would end. The personal involvement would end. And the interest would end. Cooperstown would be reduced to nothing more than a dusty, out-of-the-way storage bin for baseball’s history.

I know you want to get back to Beethoven, Raquel and Mantle. Chances are you quickly answered those three questions in your head, and chances are you felt a twinge of self-righteous pique at the idea that anyone would disagree with you. That’s the proper, normal reaction. It means you have strong opinions, and it means you care.

The Test is for you. Let’s get to it.

Making the grade

The second Hall of Fame argument adds the degree of greatness to the mix. The first argument  – the “in” or “out” argument – hands out invitations. The second argument sorts the invited guests into clubs.

Bill James published an essay about a 4-tier system in The Bill James Historical Abstract (cite) and Bill Simmons suggested a 7-tier system for the National Basketball Association (NBA) in The Book of Basketball. (Cite) James’ essay provided loose definitions for how he would separate players into categories based on their suitability for the Hall of Fame, while Simmons mostly argued about where the players would rank. I found inspiration in both.

First, building a tiered Hall of Fame requires a framework to house the tiers. My theoretical Hall of Fame club will have five floors.

The top floor will house the private “Pantheon club” of 30 original members, with one new member elected every few years. Downton Abbey’s waitstaff will serve corked wine out of dusty bottles and hors d’ oeuvres made out of snails and fish eggs on crystal platters. The napkins will be made of silk, the chairs crushed velvet.

The VIP club’s original 60 can add a new member roughly every other year. Former White House staffers will serve the best craft beers with seafood appetizers on the good China. The napkins will be linen, the chairs aged leather.

The restaurant will seat the All-Star Club’s 180 original members, with plenty of space to accommodate the one new member brought in each year. The waitstaff of retired flight attendants will serve capped wine and ice cold light beer to wash down artichoke pizza bagels and deep fried zuccini, served on Martha Stewart commemorative plates. The napkins, like the chairs, will be made out of cloth recycled from unsold Pete Rose game-worn uniforms.

The cafeteria will have room for several hundred members, but they will only be allowed to seat new people by permission of a special committee. The servers will be lunch ladies who were let go by the New York Public Schools system, and every Tuesday will be meatloaf day. Members are encouraged to wear long sleeves and thick pants; the benches have splinters and somebody keeps stealing the napkins out of the bathroom. New members will be required to bring boxed wine and do the dishes after each meal.

The rest of the candidates can wait in the bar next to the lobby (there’s a 2-drink minimum) or stand in line outside, behind a velvet rope. We encourage hopeful candidates to bring food for the doorman. It won’t get anyone in, but he gets surly when his blood sugar tanks.

Once the place is built, we will need a way to sort the members into the appropriate clubs. After years of experimenting with tarot cards, tea leaves and Ouija boards (don’t ask) I settled on the same scholastic ABCD system that James used.

The Hall of Fame club has 5 floors, so I designed a system with 6 grades. The A grades can follow Babe Ruth’s entourage to the Pantheon while the B grades are escorted to the VIP club. A guide can lead the C grades to the All-Star club, and directions to the Old Timers Cafeteria are prominently posted in the lobby. The E grades can loiter, but they have to wait at the back of the line. F grade stragglers should be chased off with a hose.

Now that we know where they go, who are they? How do we tell them apart? What makes a grade A Hall of Famer an A, and a grade D Hall of Famer a D?

First, the system works on a grading curve. Baseball itself is one giant curved grading system, if you think about it. There is only one champion each year, and there is a champion every year. Teams are sorted from top to bottom no matter how they compare to the teams outside their grading curve. The top half of each subset, whether it’s a league or a division, is called the first division -and last place is always last place.

Second, the system is designed to have vertical and horizontal integrity. If you go off the grading rails it’s fairly simple to see where you digressed, and how you can get back to the Test-ational superhighway.

The Test works vertically for individual players. Running a player through the Test generates a grade-point average that corresponds with the ABCD grading system. If the GPA you come up with is too far off the general consensus, the Discussion will consider your grade an outlier. That doesn’t mean you have to agree with the Discussion, though. It simply means your grade will get laughed out of the room unless you can back it up with some convincing evidence.

The Test works horizontally for groups of players. If you run a pool of players through the Test, you need to wind up with the right number of players for each grade. If, for example, you run a pool of candidates through one of the subjective questions and you have 9 A’s, 12 B’s, 135 C’s and 62 D’s, you should probably make some adjustments.

Your Test, your rules, though. If you think there are 9 A’s and 135 C’s, that’s up to you. As always, though, opinions are worthless without convincing evidence to back them up. If you want to convince anyone that there were 9 grade A players, 12 grade B players, 135 grade C players and 62 grade D players in your pool, you are going to have to present compelling evidence.

Keep in mind that you need to maintain vertical and horizontal integrity. Your subjective grade breakdowns need to match the objective breakdowns, so if you adjust one you have to adjust the other.

THE GRADES

A. One of the top 30 players ever. A grade A player was a winner he was the best of the best. He was the MVP favorite every spring, and either the MVP or the guy who got shafted in the MVP voting in the fall. He lasted long enough to rank near the top of the counting category lists, and his rate stats were as impressive as his counting stats. He reached the top of the game and he stayed there for years. He was a household name and the face of the game. No history of baseball could be told without him. When he became eligible for the Hall of Fame he was voted in immediately by virtual acclimation, and every sports magazine got flooded with angry letters demanding to know why he wasn’t unanimously elected. Baseball spits out a grade A player about once every five years.

B. One of the top 90 players ever. The grade B grade player owned the playground if there wasn’t a grade A player around. He was a grade A player, but with a weakness. He was the wise guy pick to knock off the reigning grade A player (Frank Robinson), or he was a grade A player with a short career (Sandy Koufax), or he dominated a weak group of players (Hal Newhouser). He wasn’t a household name, but he was universally known within the sporting world. The Hall of Fame voted him in quickly, usually within 2-3 years. Nobody would picket Cooperstown if he wasn’t elected right away, but there would be letters. Baseball spits out a grade B player every couple of years.

C. One of the top 180 players ever. The grade C player might have been the star on a bad team, like Richie Ashburn with the 1950s Phillies, or just one of the guys on a great team, like Tony Perez with the Big Red Machine in the 1970s. A grade C player can’t win without help from an A or B player. A grade C player was a perennial all-star who could win an MVP in a career year, but not a consistent MVP contender. He was a big name in the baseball universe, but anonymous elsewhere. The BBWAA voted him into the Hall of Fame, but it took a while. Grade C Hall of Fame bandwagons generally start out slow, and gain steam towards the end of the player’s eligibility.

D. One of the top 400 players ever. The D players can be sorted into 3 groups: grade C producers who had really short careers, grade E producers who had really long careers, or star players with an obvious weakness. The grade D might have never put up that one big year, or the one big second year to “prove” the first one. His career might have been interrupted by a rash of injuries, or truncated by substance abuse issues. He might have been a grade C offensive player but a terrible defender, or a tremendous defender but a god-awful hitter. A grade D player would have been known to hometown fans, hard-core fans and fantasy baseball fans. Baseball spit out about 1 grade D player per year before expansion, or about 1 per 16 teams. With 30 teams, the number is up to about 2 per year.

E. The E players are the rest of the regular players. If a player survived for 10 years and played regularly for 5 years he was an E player. A total of 741 pitchers have thrown at least 1,500 innings and 1,548 position players have played at least 1,000 games since the National Association opened for business in 1871. I set my parameters a little lower, to catch players who would have a fighting chance of landing on a positional top 100 list or a top 300 pitcher list, but

F. According to BaseballReference.com, 16,982 players have gotten into a major league baseball game. Out of that pool 2,579 position players played at least 600 games, 958 starting pitchers took the ball for at least 125 games and 796 relief pitchers got into at least 250 games. That’s 4,331 out of 16,982, a little over 25 percent. I’m sure the other 75 percent were kind to their mothers and rarely kicked stray dogs, but we’ll make sure to padlock the entryway.

Just in case.

Baseball spit out about one grade A, B or C player per year until expansion began in 1961. Since then the number of teams has nearly doubled, and the number of viable Hall of Fame candidates has also nearly doubled. If there were 90 A,B and C players between 1871 and 1960, then there have been another 90 between 1961 and 2017. The increases are not proportional; there are not as many additional A and B players as there are additional C and D players. The number of teams has nearly doubled but there are still just two leagues and one champion.

Doing the math:

1871-1900 – average of about 12 teams

1901-1960 – 16 teams – 960 teams

1961-1968 – 20 teams* – 158 (1961 NL only 8 teams)

1969-1976 – 24 teams – 192 teams

1977-1992 – 26 teams: 416 teams

1993-1996 – 28 teams: 112 teams

1997-2016 – 30 teams: 600 teams

Funny quotes from all over the sports world

Posted August 6, 2011

I’m working as hard as I can to get my life and my cash to run out at the same time. If I can just die after lunch Tuesday, everything will be perfect.
Doug Sanders, professional golfer

All the fat guys watch me and say to their wives, “See, there’s a fat guy doing okay. Bring me another beer.”
Mickey Lolich, Detroit Tigers Pitcher

Last year, we couldn’t win at home and we were losing on the road. My failure as a coach was that I couldn’t think of anyplace else to play.
Harry Neale, professional hockey coach

When it’s third and ten, you can take the milk drinkers; I’ll take the whiskey drinkers every time.
Max McGee, Green Bay Packers receiver

I found out that it’s not good to talk about my troubles. Eighty percent of the people who hear them don’t care and the other twenty percent are glad you’re having trouble.
Tommy LaSorda, LA Dodgers manager

My knees look like they lost a knife fight with a midget.
E. J. Holub, Kansas City Chiefs linebacker regarding his 12 knee operations

When they operated, I told them to put in a Koufax fastball. They did – but it was Mrs. Koufax’s.
Tommy John, N.Y. Yankees recalling his 1974 arm surgery

I don’t know. I only played there for nine years.
Walt Garrison, Dallas Cowboys fullback when asked if Tom Landry ever smiles

We were tipping off our plays. Whenever we broke from the huddle, three backs were laughing and one was pale as a ghost.
John Breen, Houston Oilers

The film looks suspiciously like the game itself.
Bum Phillips, New Orleans Saints after viewing a lop-sided loss to the Atlanta Falcons

The only difference between me and General Custer is that I have to watch the films on Sunday.
Rick Venturi, Northwestern football coach, after a lop-sided loss

Because if it didn’t work out, I didn’t want to blow the whole day.
Paul Horning, Green Bay Packers running back on why his marriage ceremony was before noon.

I won’t know until my barber tells me on Monday.
Knute Rockne, when asked why Notre Dame had lost a game

I tell him “Attaway to hit, George.”
Jim Frey, K.C. Royals manager when asked what advice he gives George Brett on hitting

I learned a long time ago that “minor surgery” is when they do the operation on someone else.
Bill Walton, Portland Trial Blazers

The game don’t start until the fat lady sings.
Rosanne Barr, before the anthem at a Padres Game

No, the game don’t start until the fat lady grabs her crotch and spits.
Tony Kornheiser

Theoretical Restraint – How nobody would have been tempted by steroids except for everyone who was

July 19, 2011

Read this.

At the time it was published, this article was a revelation. Most people didn’t know that Lenny Dykstra was so brazen about making his 1993 season one for the ages, or that there was so much good information about his own timeline doing PEDS. We didn’t have documentation for Reggie’s steroid dealing roommate becoming Canseco and McGwire’s dealer, or the timeline. I had independently come to the conclusion that Barry Bonds started using in 1999 out of some sort of bitterness or competitiveness because players that he deemed inferior had passed him up by using steroids, but this article includes the “testimony” of someone that had come to the exact same conclusion, and had some material evidence to back up his opinions. We didn’t know that Wally Joyner, who would be one of the last people in the world that anyone would expect to be tempted, actually took PEDS for short time before tossing them away.

Do any of us really understand how hard it would be to say no in that climate? Some did, obviously, and from this article I would guess that the number was a lot higher than Canseco claimed. I’ve been on record as guessing that the vast majority of major league players did PEDS. After this, I would lower my guess to somewhere around half. I doubt that it was much less than half, though.

I also came to understand a lot more about baseball’s own problems trying to deal with the sudden scourge. I don’t find them blameless, but I do understand how it all got so out of control, and how it got so far before any steps were taken. We look back and wonder why it wasn’t nipped in the bud. The better question would probably be “what else could they have done, given the management/labor paradigm of the time?” Baseball was at the feet of the union, and since they couldn’t control it none of the individual teams could be reasonably expected to be the only ones that stuck their necks out.

As is the case with most epidemics, it takes time to identify that there is a problem, and then time to figure out what to do, then (in this case) time to prove that there is a problem and time to negotiate how to address the problem. Baseball first really heard of it around 1991, accepted that they need to at least acknowledge it in 1997 (they got distracted by the strike issues for a couple of years, which slowed down the progression), realized that they needed to take proactive steps in 2000, and then it took 3 years to sell it to the union through negotiations and proof that the problem was real. I come away feeling that the Selig-led hierarchy worked through the process in a fairly normal time frame, considering that they weren’t getting any help from the teams and certainly no help from the players or their union.

Who’s to blame? Pete Rose, Reggie Jackson and Miguel Tejada. (I’m just kidding)

Seriously, can’t it just be one of those things? Baseball is a game that produces unimaginable amounts of money, which all of the interested parties get an ample share of. When there is a shift in technology, a shift in equipment, or (in this case) a shift in available ways to beat the other guy, everyone always scrambles to get ahead of everyone else. The guys that stood still and said “this isn’t right” were so drowned out that it took over a decade to get even the smallest toe hold on the problem. It happens and, as I’ve said to the point of hyperventilating for years, it’s happened before. It’s going to happen again, too, sooner or later.

Oh, and just to put a bonnet on it, my three requested “stipulated” facts, with adjustments to reflect the provable portions:

– Reggie Jackson was living with Curtis Wenzlaff in 1987, while still an active player.

– Pete Rose had, as house mates, Tommy Gioiosa and Paul Janszen, both steroid dealers who worked out with Rose at various times from 1985 until the betting scandal erupted in 1989. Janszen was the star witness against Rose, and Gioiosa ran bets for Rose before introducing him to Janszen in late 1986. Janszen didn’t live with Rose while he was an active player, but Gioiosa did. Both lived with him while he was the manager of the Reds.

– Miguel Tejada gave Rafael Palmiero a B-12 shot shortly after Palmiero testified before congress. Palmiero tested positive for a steroid that was popular several years earlier, but was considered obsolete by 2005.

I don’t personally care who did what, other than from curiosity. I have no angst about it, or any anger towards the miscreants. My only interest in taking this much time researching and posting is towards the goal of getting the record straight, or as straight as it can be given the climate of denial around the issue.

Just for the record, I don’t believe that either Reggie Jackson or Pete Rose derived any benefit from taking steroids. I don’t believe that either one of them even took steroids, though I wouldn’t be shocked if it came out that they did. I do believe that Palmiero took steroids, and the only reason that I want the Tejada facts to be stipulated is because I believe that it’s possible that he was set up to take a fall.

I don’t have a clue why anyone felt that it was necessary for Palmiero to take a fall. I don’t know what lurks in the minds of people like that, so how in the hell can I explain their actions? Palmiero was later exposed in places where I feel comfortable in stipulating that he was a steroid user, so why should I care about that last positive test? For Raffy, I don’t care. He did steroids, so that last test doesn’t matter. He was set up in a clumsy, amateurish way. That bothers me. I mean, why? I find it fascinating; wondering why they would set up someone that was already going down?

Nixon fixed an election that he was going to win anyway. Maybe that was the thought process. We all watch so many scripted TV shows and movies that we forget that, in the real world, even supposedly educated and worldly people can act like complete morons once in awhile. In the end it doesn’t matter in the least whether Palmiero was set up, does it? Well, to Palmiero anyway. It might matter to us, though, if we can find out who did it. Maybe these people “raped a hooker”, but that doesn’t mean that a rape wasn’t committed.

Pitchers with babip and league babip, plus era+ and fip+

Name From To LBBP W L GS GF IP H R ER BB SO HR HBP ERA ERA+ FIP FIP+ Bfcd Bip %BIP Babip Lbip
A.J. Burnett 1999 2015 17 .294 164 157 430 1 2731 2519 1328 1210 1100 2513 263 143 3.99 104 3.86 108 11665 7646 .655 .295 .294
Aaron Harang 2002 2015 14 .294 128 143 381 2 2322 2445 1177 1099 712 1842 298 63 4.26 97 4.18 99 9975 7060 .708 .304 .294
Aaron Sele 1993 2007 15 .295 148 112 352 15 2153 2413 1208 1102 798 1407 225 112 4.61 100 4.41 105 9534 6992 .733 .313 .295
Ad Gumbert 1888 1896 9 .298 123 102 235 28 1987 2325 1350 944 635 548 82 81 4.28 95 4.09 99 8913 7567 .849 .296 .298
Addie Joss 1902 1910 9 .275 160 97 260 22 2327 1888 730 488 364 920 19 58 1.89 142 2.25 119 8891 7530 .847 .248 .275
Adonis Terry 1884 1897 14 .298 197 196 406 33 3514 3525 2303 1460 1298 1553 76 148 3.74 103 3.72 104 15413 12338 .800 .280 .298
Al Downing 1961 1977 17 .273 123 107 317 37 2268 1946 938 811 933 1639 177 31 3.22 106 3.37 101 9539 6759 .709 .262 .273
Al Leiter 1987 2005 19 .290 162 132 382 9 2391 2152 1101 1010 1163 1974 198 117 3.80 112 4.10 104 10334 6882 .666 .284 .290
Al Orth 1895 1909 15 .288 204 189 394 44 3354 3564 1704 1256 661 948 75 83 3.37 100 3.11 108 13837 12070 .872 .289 .288
Al Spalding 1871 1877 7 .312 252 65 325 31 2886 3280 1790 684 164 248 15 2.13 132 2.70 104 12724 12297 .966 .266 .312
Alex Kellner 1948 1959 12 .272 101 112 250 37 1849 1925 1015 906 747 816 184 37 4.41 95 4.16 101 8023 6239 .778 .279 .272
Allie Reynolds 1942 1954 13 .271 182 107 309 97 2492 2193 1026 915 1261 1423 133 57 3.30 109 3.64 99 10660 7786 .730 .265 .271
Amos Rusie 1889 1901 13 .300 246 174 427 35 3778 3389 2068 1288 1707 1950 75 112 3.07 129 3.71 107 16313 12469 .764 .266 .300
Andy Ashby 1991 2004 14 .292 98 110 285 10 1810 1857 922 829 540 1173 205 61 4.12 99 4.26 96 7692 5713 .743 .289 .292
Andy Benes 1989 2002 14 .291 155 139 387 6 2505 2377 1206 1106 909 2000 289 55 3.97 104 4.08 101 10645 7392 .694 .282 .291
Andy Messersmith 1968 1979 12 .275 130 99 295 30 2230 1719 812 709 831 1625 174 40 2.86 121 3.28 106 9120 6450 .707 .240 .275
Andy Pettitte 1995 2013 19 .294 256 153 521 3 3316 3448 1572 1418 1031 2448 288 55 3.85 117 3.74 120 14074 10252 .728 .308 .294
Art Nehf 1915 1929 15 .284 184 120 320 87 2707 2715 1164 964 640 844 107 40 3.20 105 3.39 99 11183 9552 .854 .273 .284
Babe Adams 1906 1926 21 .280 194 140 354 90 2995 2841 1133 917 430 1036 67 47 2.76 118 2.72 120 11947 10367 .868 .268 .280
Barney Pelty 1903 1912 10 .277 92 117 217 40 1908 1663 750 558 532 693 22 104 2.63 100 2.83 93 7602 6251 .822 .263 .277
Barry Zito 2000 2015 16 .294 165 143 421 9 2576 2381 1254 1157 1064 1885 282 97 4.04 105 4.39 97 11001 7673 .697 .274 .294
Bartolo Colon 1997 2016 20 .295 233 162 500 1 3172 3229 1510 1387 888 2365 379 60 3.93 111 4.04 108 13379 9687 .724 .294 .295
Bert Blyleven 1970 1992 23 .279 287 250 685 3 4970 4632 2029 1830 1322 3701 430 155 3.31 118 3.19 122 20491 14883 .726 .282 .279
Bert Cunningham 1887 1901 15 .299 142 167 311 28 2734 3071 1942 1283 1064 718 62 148 4.22 91 4.04 95 12285 10293 .838 .292 .299
Bill Dietrich 1933 1948 16 .279 108 128 253 72 2003 2117 1146 997 890 660 129 22 4.48 92 4.33 95 8874 7173 .808 .277 .279
Bill Dinneen 1898 1909 12 .282 170 177 352 35 3074 2957 1411 1029 829 1127 78 76 3.01 107 3.09 104 12548 10438 .832 .276 .282
Bill Doak 1912 1929 18 .284 169 157 369 63 2782 2676 1184 920 851 1014 71 65 2.98 107 3.23 99 11582 9581 .827 .272 .284
Bill Donovan 1898 1918 21 .280 185 139 327 49 2964 2631 1212 886 1059 1552 30 90 2.69 106 2.77 103 12175 9444 .776 .275 .280
Bill Gullickson 1979 1994 16 .282 162 136 390 3 2560 2659 1228 1118 622 1279 282 34 3.93 98 4.00 96 10744 8527 .794 .279 .282
Bill Hallahan 1925 1938 14 .290 102 94 224 53 1740 1838 915 779 779 856 71 8 4.03 102 4.01 103 7624 5910 .775 .299 .290
Bill Hands 1965 1975 11 .272 111 110 260 69 1951 1895 834 727 492 1128 167 36 3.35 114 3.28 116 8116 6293 .775 .275 .272
Bill Hutchinson 1884 1897 14 .298 182 163 346 29 3079 3124 1913 1228 1132 1235 104 86 3.59 112 3.77 107 13458 10901 .810 .277 .298
Bill Lee 1934 1947 14 .279 169 157 379 46 2864 2953 1304 1127 893 998 137 24 3.54 106 3.71 101 12186 10134 .832 .278 .279
Bill Lee 1969 1982 14 .276 119 90 225 70 1944 2122 885 783 531 713 176 27 3.62 108 3.91 100 8271 6824 .825 .285 .276
Bill Monbouquette 1958 1968 11 .271 114 112 263 27 1961 1995 910 803 462 1122 211 20 3.68 104 3.53 108 8207 6392 .779 .279 .271
Bill Sherdel 1918 1932 15 .288 165 146 273 164 2709 3018 1326 1120 661 839 150 54 3.72 104 3.85 100 11604 9900 .853 .290 .288
Bill Singer 1964 1977 14 .273 118 127 308 7 2174 1952 944 819 781 1515 132 63 3.39 99 3.09 109 9143 6652 .728 .274 .273
Billy Hoeft 1952 1966 15 .271 97 101 200 130 1847 1820 883 809 685 1140 173 36 3.94 99 3.63 107 7917 5883 .743 .280 .271
Billy O’Dell 1954 1967 14 .271 105 100 199 137 1817 1697 758 665 556 1133 137 42 3.29 109 3.25 110 7643 5775 .756 .270 .271
Billy Pierce 1945 1964 20 .272 211 169 433 85 3306 2989 1325 1201 1178 1999 284 30 3.27 119 3.49 111 13853 10362 .748 .261 .272
Billy Rhines 1890 1899 10 .301 113 103 222 26 1891 1961 1102 731 576 553 25 108 3.48 114 3.66 108 8176 6914 .846 .280 .301
Bob Buhl 1953 1967 15 .272 166 132 369 38 2587 2446 1162 1019 1105 1268 238 37 3.55 103 4.05 90 11045 8397 .760 .263 .272
Bob Caruthers 1884 1892 9 .290 218 99 310 29 2828 2678 1393 891 597 900 59 99 2.83 122 3.27 106 11842 10187 .860 .257 .290
Bob Ewing 1902 1912 11 .278 124 118 264 27 2301 2097 940 637 614 998 31 55 2.49 116 2.55 113 9157 7459 .815 .277 .278
Bob Feller 1936 1956 21 .275 266 162 484 52 3827 3271 1557 1384 1764 2581 224 60 3.25 122 3.48 114 16180 11551 .714 .264 .275
Bob Forsch 1974 1989 16 .279 168 136 422 19 2794 2777 1319 1169 832 1133 216 45 3.76 98 3.84 96 11715 9489 .810 .270 .279
Bob Friend 1951 1966 16 .271 197 230 497 56 3611 3772 1652 1438 894 1734 286 46 3.58 107 3.35 114 15214 12254 .805 .284 .271
Bob Gibson 1959 1975 17 .272 251 174 482 21 3884 3279 1420 1258 1336 3117 257 102 2.91 127 2.89 128 16068 11256 .701 .268 .272
Bob Groom 1909 1918 10 .275 119 150 288 47 2336 2205 1068 806 783 1159 49 55 3.10 95 2.83 104 9501 7455 .785 .289 .275
Bob Harmon 1909 1918 10 .275 107 133 240 61 2054 1966 957 761 762 634 44 38 3.33 90 3.34 90 8526 7048 .827 .273 .275
Bob Knepper 1976 1990 15 .280 146 155 413 10 2708 2737 1258 1106 857 1473 228 47 3.68 95 3.74 93 11488 8883 .773 .282 .280
Bob Lemon 1946 1958 13 .272 207 128 350 73 2850 2559 1185 1024 1251 1277 180 57 3.23 119 3.79 101 12099 9334 .771 .255 .272
Bob Ojeda 1980 1994 15 .282 115 98 291 26 1884 1833 856 764 676 1128 145 24 3.65 104 3.69 103 7977 6004 .753 .281 .282
Bob Purkey 1954 1966 13 .271 129 115 276 53 2114 2170 998 891 510 793 195 71 3.79 103 3.80 103 8899 7330 .824 .269 .271
Bob Rush 1948 1960 13 .272 127 152 321 44 2410 2327 1128 977 789 1244 176 34 3.65 110 3.41 118 10219 7976 .781 .270 .272
Bob Shaw 1957 1967 11 .272 108 98 223 101 1778 1837 791 696 511 880 150 56 3.52 105 3.61 102 7587 5990 .790 .282 .272
Bob Shawkey 1913 1927 15 .282 195 150 333 115 2937 2722 1200 1008 1018 1360 111 48 3.09 114 3.37 105 12019 9482 .789 .275 .282
Bob Smith 1925 1937 13 .290 106 139 229 157 2246 2472 1139 983 670 618 132 18 3.94 100 4.22 93 9651 8213 .851 .285 .290
Bob Tewksbury 1986 1998 13 .288 110 102 277 8 1807 2043 884 787 292 812 142 41 3.92 104 3.65 112 7623 6336 .831 .300 .288
Bob Veale 1962 1974 13 .272 120 95 255 63 1926 1684 755 658 858 1703 91 29 3.07 113 2.76 126 8163 5482 .672 .291 .272
Bob Welch 1978 1994 17 .282 211 146 462 20 3092 2894 1310 1191 1034 1969 267 79 3.47 106 3.71 99 12956 9607 .742 .273 .282
Bobby Mathews 1871 1887 17 .301 297 248 568 12 4956 5601 3497 1573 532 1528 70 48 2.86 104 2.70 110 21997 19819 .901 .279 .301
Bobby Shantz 1949 1964 16 .272 119 99 171 192 1935 1795 817 726 643 1072 151 41 3.38 119 3.46 116 8045 6138 .763 .268 .272
Bobby Witt 1986 2001 16 .289 142 157 397 13 2465 2493 1449 1324 1375 1955 252 39 4.83 91 4.42 99 11003 7382 .671 .304 .289
Bobo Newsom 1929 1953 25 .280 211 222 483 71 3759 3769 1908 1664 1732 2082 206 61 3.98 107 3.81 112 16467 12386 .752 .288 .280
Brad Penny 2000 2014 15 .294 121 101 319 10 1925 2030 990 917 619 1273 194 53 4.29 99 4.12 103 8218 6079 .740 .302 .294
Brad Radke 1995 2006 12 .295 148 139 377 0 2451 2643 1233 1150 445 1467 326 62 4.22 113 4.24 112 10244 7944 .775 .292 .295
Bret Saberhagen 1984 2001 18 .288 167 117 371 13 2562 2452 1036 952 471 1715 218 59 3.34 126 3.27 129 10421 7958 .764 .281 .288
Brett Tomko 1997 2011 15 .294 100 103 266 39 1816 1898 1011 939 582 1209 255 37 4.65 92 4.60 93 7824 5741 .734 .286 .294
Brickyard Kennedy 1892 1903 12 .299 187 159 354 49 3030 3282 1863 1332 1203 799 94 68 3.96 102 4.28 94 13285 11121 .837 .287 .299
Bronson Arroyo 2000 2014 15 .294 145 131 369 6 2364 2413 1201 1100 642 1526 324 103 4.19 103 4.53 95 10016 7421 .741 .281 .294
Bruce Hurst 1980 1994 15 .282 145 113 359 5 2417 2463 1143 1052 740 1689 258 28 3.92 104 3.73 109 10204 7489 .734 .294 .282
Bruce Kison 1971 1985 15 .277 115 88 246 54 1809 1693 839 736 662 1073 150 68 3.66 102 3.74 100 7676 5723 .746 .270 .277
Bucky Walters 1934 1950 17 .279 198 160 398 18 3104 2990 1343 1139 1121 1107 155 51 3.30 116 3.82 100 13140 10706 .815 .265 .279
Bud Black 1981 1995 15 .283 121 116 296 42 2053 1978 982 876 623 1039 217 49 3.84 104 4.15 96 8627 6699 .777 .263 .283
Bullet Joe Bush 1912 1928 17 .283 196 184 370 93 3085 2990 1439 1203 1263 1318 96 63 3.51 100 3.54 99 13053 10313 .790 .281 .283
Bump Hadley 1926 1941 16 .287 161 165 355 108 2945 2980 1609 1389 1442 1318 167 63 4.24 105 4.42 101 13016 10026 .770 .281 .287
Burleigh Grimes 1916 1934 19 .286 270 212 497 95 4180 4412 2050 1638 1295 1512 148 101 3.53 108 3.65 104 17974 14918 .830 .286 .286
Burt Hooton 1971 1985 15 .277 151 136 377 35 2652 2497 1112 996 799 1491 193 20 3.38 108 3.39 108 11025 8522 .773 .270 .277
Camilo Pascual 1954 1971 18 .271 174 170 404 67 2930 2703 1334 1183 1069 2167 256 61 3.63 103 3.32 113 12415 8862 .714 .276 .271
Candy Cummings 1872 1877 6 .312 145 94 241 2 2149 2526 1450 579 113 259 12 2.42 113 2.66 103 9583 9199 .960 .273 .312
Carl Hubbell 1928 1943 16 .285 253 154 433 82 3590 3461 1380 1188 725 1677 227 53 2.98 130 3.55 109 14805 12123 .819 .267 .285
Carl Mays 1915 1929 15 .284 207 126 325 124 3021 2912 1211 979 734 862 73 89 2.92 119 3.28 106 12352 10594 .858 .268 .284
Carl Pavano 1998 2012 15 .294 108 107 284 3 1788 1971 955 873 425 1091 200 84 4.39 96 4.15 102 7643 5843 .764 .303 .294
Carlos Zambrano 2001 2012 12 .294 132 91 302 11 1959 1709 879 797 898 1637 161 102 3.66 120 4.01 110 8389 5591 .666 .277 .294
Casey Patten 1901 1908 8 .279 106 128 238 28 2062 2154 1079 770 557 757 40 74 3.36 88 2.98 99 8622 7194 .834 .294 .279
Catfish Hunter 1965 1979 15 .274 224 166 476 6 3449 2958 1380 1248 954 2012 374 49 3.26 104 3.66 93 14032 10643 .758 .243 .274
CC Sabathia 2001 2016 16 .294 223 141 482 0 3168 3003 1423 1303 959 2726 315 104 3.70 117 3.66 118 13233 9129 .690 .294 .294
Chan Ho Park 1994 2010 17 .295 124 98 287 52 1993 1872 1046 965 910 1715 230 138 4.36 97 4.45 95 8714 5721 .657 .287 .295
Charles Nagy 1990 2003 14 .292 129 105 297 9 1954 2188 1061 980 586 1242 217 51 4.51 101 4.19 109 8454 6358 .752 .310 .292
Charlie Buffinton 1882 1892 11 .291 233 152 396 17 3404 3344 1824 1120 856 1700 87 31 2.96 115 3.08 111 14465 11791 .815 .276 .291
Charlie Hough 1970 1994 25 .280 216 216 440 240 3801 3283 1807 1582 1665 2362 383 174 3.75 106 4.29 93 16170 11586 .717 .250 .280
Charlie Leibrandt 1979 1993 15 .281 140 119 346 17 2308 2390 1068 952 656 1121 172 37 3.71 108 3.69 109 9774 7788 .797 .285 .281
Charlie Root 1923 1941 19 .288 201 160 341 186 3197 3252 1467 1274 889 1459 189 79 3.59 111 3.79 105 13529 10913 .807 .281 .288
Chick Fraser 1896 1909 14 .286 175 212 388 43 3364 3462 2000 1373 1338 1098 69 219 3.67 92 3.76 90 14553 11829 .813 .287 .286
Chief Bender 1903 1925 23 .279 212 127 334 112 3017 2645 1108 823 712 1711 40 102 2.46 112 2.29 120 11895 9330 .784 .279 .279
Chris Carpenter 1997 2012 16 .294 144 94 332 6 2219 2205 1021 927 627 1697 220 85 3.76 116 3.80 115 9305 6676 .717 .297 .294
Chris Short 1959 1973 15 .272 135 132 308 78 2325 2215 991 886 806 1629 183 61 3.43 104 3.27 109 9801 7122 .727 .285 .272
Christy Mathewson 1900 1916 17 .279 373 188 552 73 4788 4219 1620 1135 848 2507 89 59 2.13 135 2.26 127 18913 15410 .815 .268 .279
Chuck Finley 1986 2002 17 .289 200 173 467 24 3197 3069 1517 1366 1332 2610 304 76 3.85 115 3.91 113 13638 9316 .683 .297 .289
Chuck Stobbs 1947 1961 15 .272 107 130 238 105 1920 2003 1030 916 735 897 184 35 4.29 95 3.98 102 8378 6527 .779 .279 .272
Clarence Mitchell 1911 1932 22 .285 125 139 277 77 2217 2613 1215 1016 624 543 115 52 4.12 95 4.01 98 9686 8352 .862 .299 .285
Clark Griffith 1891 1914 24 .288 237 146 372 78 3385 3670 1852 1246 774 955 76 171 3.31 121 3.58 112 14335 12359 .862 .291 .288
Claude Hendrix 1911 1920 10 .278 144 116 257 83 2371 2123 910 698 697 1092 41 49 2.65 113 2.74 109 9651 7772 .805 .268 .278
Claude Osteen 1957 1975 19 .272 196 195 488 24 3460 3471 1435 1268 940 1612 249 45 3.30 104 3.38 102 14433 11587 .803 .278 .272
Claude Passeau 1935 1947 13 .278 162 150 331 85 2719 2856 1204 1003 728 1104 105 39 3.32 113 3.27 115 11642 9666 .830 .285 .278
Cliff Lee 2002 2014 13 .294 143 91 324 1 2156 2116 923 843 464 1824 223 50 3.52 118 3.45 120 8917 6356 .713 .298 .294
Cole Hamels 2006 2016 11 .295 136 96 338 0 2214 1979 869 815 592 2122 246 63 3.31 125 3.53 117 9064 6041 .666 .287 .295
Curt Davis 1934 1946 13 .280 158 131 280 111 2325 2459 1033 884 479 684 142 47 3.42 116 3.72 107 9752 8400 .861 .276 .280
Curt Schilling 1988 2007 20 .291 216 146 436 81 3261 2998 1318 1253 711 3116 347 52 3.46 127 3.23 136 13284 9058 .682 .293 .291
Curt Simmons 1947 1967 21 .272 193 183 462 54 3348 3313 1551 1318 1063 1697 255 53 3.54 111 3.49 113 14144 11076 .783 .276 .272
Cy Falkenberg 1903 1917 15 .275 130 123 266 48 2275 2090 963 678 690 1164 23 68 2.68 107 2.49 115 9170 7225 .788 .286 .275
Cy Young 1890 1911 22 .290 511 316 815 84 7356 7092 3167 2147 1217 2803 138 161 2.63 138 2.84 128 29565 25246 .854 .275 .290
Dan Haren 2003 2015 13 .294 153 131 380 4 2419 2357 1105 1009 500 2013 305 67 3.75 109 3.78 108 10022 7137 .712 .288 .294
Dan Petry 1979 1991 13 .280 125 104 300 22 2080 1984 1025 912 852 1063 218 47 3.95 102 4.39 92 8860 6680 .754 .264 .280
Danny Darwin 1978 1998 21 .284 171 182 371 171 3016 2951 1431 1286 874 1942 321 81 3.84 106 3.90 104 12716 9498 .747 .277 .284
Danny Jackson 1983 1997 15 .286 112 131 324 11 2072 2110 1061 923 816 1225 133 50 4.01 100 3.77 106 8986 6762 .753 .292 .286
Danny MacFayden 1926 1943 18 .285 132 159 334 75 2706 2981 1394 1191 872 797 112 64 3.96 101 4.07 98 11767 9922 .843 .289 .285
Darren Oliver 1993 2013 21 .294 118 98 229 121 1915 2037 1045 960 720 1259 216 96 4.51 104 4.53 104 8346 6055 .725 .301 .294
Darryl Kile 1991 2002 12 .292 133 119 331 8 2165 2135 1099 992 918 1668 214 117 4.12 104 4.24 101 9429 6512 .691 .295 .292
Dave Burba 1990 2004 15 .292 115 87 234 71 1777 1777 961 886 762 1398 201 58 4.49 99 4.36 102 7749 5330 .688 .296 .292
Dave Foutz 1884 1894 11 .294 147 66 216 33 1997 1843 1068 631 510 790 38 58 2.84 124 3.28 107 8425 7029 .834 .257 .294
Dave Goltz 1972 1983 12 .278 113 109 264 39 2039 2104 950 836 646 1105 149 26 3.69 105 3.50 111 8628 6702 .777 .292 .278
Dave McNally 1962 1975 14 .272 184 119 396 7 2730 2488 1070 982 826 1512 230 72 3.24 106 3.49 98 11229 8589 .765 .263 .272
Dave Roberts 1969 1981 13 .275 103 125 277 69 2099 2188 979 882 615 957 155 31 3.78 97 3.55 103 8930 7172 .803 .283 .275
Dave Stewart 1978 1995 18 .282 168 129 348 87 2629 2499 1259 1154 1034 1741 264 62 3.95 100 4.06 97 11251 8150 .724 .274 .282
Dave Stieb 1979 1998 20 .285 176 137 412 14 2895 2572 1225 1106 1034 1669 225 129 3.44 122 3.82 110 12072 9015 .747 .260 .285
David Cone 1986 2003 18 .289 194 126 419 9 2898 2504 1222 1115 1137 2668 258 106 3.46 121 3.57 117 12184 8015 .658 .280 .289
David Wells 1987 2007 21 .291 239 157 489 65 3439 3635 1702 1578 719 2201 407 83 4.13 108 3.99 112 14413 11003 .763 .293 .291
Dazzy Vance 1915 1935 21 .285 197 140 349 52 2966 2809 1246 1068 840 2045 132 77 3.24 125 3.18 127 12366 9272 .750 .289 .285
Deacon Phillippe 1899 1911 13 .281 189 109 289 72 2607 2518 1071 749 363 929 41 59 2.59 120 2.60 120 10380 8988 .866 .276 .281
Dean Chance 1961 1971 11 .271 128 115 294 61 2147 1864 832 697 739 1534 122 65 2.92 119 2.96 117 8906 6446 .724 .270 .271
Dennis Eckersley 1975 1998 24 .284 197 171 361 577 3285 3076 1382 1278 738 2401 347 75 3.50 116 3.40 119 13534 9973 .737 .274 .284
Dennis Lamp 1977 1992 16 .280 96 96 163 173 1830 1975 915 799 549 857 122 35 3.93 104 3.61 113 7823 6260 .800 .296 .280
Dennis Leonard 1974 1986 13 .279 144 106 302 3 2187 2137 1008 898 622 1323 202 52 3.70 107 3.59 110 9149 6950 .760 .278 .279
Dennis Martinez 1976 1998 23 .284 245 193 562 51 3999 3897 1835 1643 1165 2149 372 122 3.70 106 3.91 100 16754 12946 .773 .272 .284
Denny Galehouse 1934 1949 16 .279 109 118 258 67 2004 2148 999 885 735 851 103 18 3.97 105 3.64 115 8688 6981 .804 .293 .279
Denny Lemaster 1962 1972 11 .271 90 105 249 41 1787 1703 778 712 600 1305 184 24 3.58 96 3.45 100 7559 5446 .720 .279 .271
Denny McLain 1963 1972 10 .270 131 91 264 8 1886 1646 778 711 548 1282 242 26 3.39 101 3.72 92 7719 5621 .728 .250 .270
Denny Neagle 1991 2003 13 .292 124 92 286 23 1890 1887 948 891 594 1415 250 53 4.24 105 4.33 103 8031 5719 .712 .286 .292
Derek Lowe 1997 2013 17 .294 176 157 377 168 2671 2759 1333 1195 794 1722 217 78 4.03 109 3.83 115 11358 8547 .753 .297 .294
Dick Donovan 1950 1965 16 .272 122 99 273 28 2017 1988 909 822 495 880 198 45 3.67 104 3.70 103 8407 6789 .808 .264 .272
Dick Drago 1969 1981 13 .275 108 117 189 216 1875 1901 827 755 558 987 157 54 3.62 103 3.58 104 7899 6143 .778 .284 .275
Dick Ellsworth 1958 1971 14 .272 115 137 310 36 2155 2274 1033 890 595 1140 194 45 3.72 100 3.54 105 9156 7182 .784 .290 .272
Dick McBride 1871 1876 6 .313 149 78 237 0 2082 2420 1573 626 174 150 20 2.71 110 2.97 100 9401 9057 .963 .265 .313
Dick Rudolph 1910 1927 18 .283 121 109 240 36 2049 1971 778 605 402 786 35 27 2.66 105 2.50 112 8286 7036 .849 .275 .283
Dick Ruthven 1973 1986 14 .279 123 127 332 12 2109 2155 1075 970 767 1145 165 38 4.14 93 3.75 103 9047 6932 .766 .287 .279
Diego Segui 1962 1977 16 .273 92 111 171 264 1807 1656 867 765 786 1298 185 18 3.81 96 3.78 97 7741 5454 .705 .270 .273
Dizzy Dean 1930 1947 18 .282 150 83 230 77 1967 1919 774 661 453 1163 95 27 3.02 131 3.22 123 8171 6433 .787 .284 .282
Dizzy Trout 1939 1957 19 .272 170 161 322 134 2725 2641 1166 979 1046 1256 112 34 3.23 124 3.34 120 11615 9167 .789 .276 .272
Doc Medich 1972 1982 11 .277 124 105 287 8 1996 2036 925 838 624 955 151 35 3.78 99 3.66 102 8471 6706 .792 .281 .277
Doc White 1901 1913 13 .280 189 156 363 53 3041 2738 1118 808 670 1384 33 120 2.39 113 2.51 108 12093 9886 .817 .274 .280
Dock Ellis 1968 1979 12 .275 138 119 317 10 2128 2067 958 817 674 1136 140 44 3.46 104 3.37 107 8978 6984 .778 .276 .275
Dolf Luque 1914 1935 22 .285 194 179 367 128 3220 3231 1412 1161 918 1130 113 26 3.24 118 3.62 106 13470 11283 .838 .276 .285
Don Cardwell 1957 1970 14 .272 102 138 301 44 2123 2009 1044 924 671 1211 225 98 3.92 95 3.84 97 8949 6744 .754 .265 .272
Don Drysdale 1956 1969 14 .271 209 166 465 34 3432 3084 1292 1124 855 2486 280 154 2.95 121 3.02 118 14097 10322 .732 .272 .271
Don Newcombe 1949 1960 12 .271 149 90 294 34 2154 2102 956 852 490 1129 252 30 3.56 114 3.67 111 8891 6990 .786 .265 .271
Don Robinson 1978 1992 15 .280 109 106 229 185 1958 1894 907 824 643 1251 175 27 3.79 97 3.65 101 8252 6156 .746 .279 .280
Don Sutton 1966 1988 23 .276 324 256 756 12 5282 4692 2104 1914 1343 3574 472 82 3.26 108 3.24 109 21631 16160 .747 .261 .276
Doug Davis 1999 2011 13 .294 92 108 286 4 1715 1813 921 846 783 1279 180 44 4.44 102 4.41 103 7597 5311 .699 .307 .294
Doug Drabek 1986 1998 13 .288 155 134 387 4 2535 2448 1141 1052 704 1594 246 53 3.73 101 3.82 99 10518 7921 .753 .278 .288
Doyle Alexander 1971 1989 19 .278 194 174 464 56 3367 3376 1541 1406 978 1528 324 53 3.76 103 3.95 98 14162 11279 .796 .271 .278
Duke Esper 1890 1898 9 .301 101 100 198 35 1727 2048 1196 842 669 453 46 32 4.39 96 4.14 102 7824 6624 .847 .302 .301
Dummy Taylor 1900 1908 9 .281 116 106 237 30 1916 1877 870 585 551 767 38 72 2.75 107 2.99 98 7952 6524 .820 .282 .281
Dupee Shaw 1883 1888 6 .292 83 121 207 4 1762 1710 1050 607 396 950 41 3 3.10 99 3.04 101 7555 6165 .816 .271 .292
Dutch Leonard 1913 1925 13 .282 139 114 273 47 2192 2022 851 672 664 1160 54 68 2.76 115 2.82 113 8907 6961 .782 .283 .282
Dutch Leonard 1933 1953 21 .278 191 181 375 171 3218 3304 1432 1162 737 1170 158 56 3.25 119 3.34 116 13487 11366 .843 .277 .278
Dutch Ruether 1917 1927 11 .285 137 95 272 31 2124 2244 989 826 739 708 54 66 3.50 105 3.69 100 9162 7595 .829 .288 .285
Dwight Gooden 1984 2000 17 .288 194 112 410 4 2800 2564 1198 1091 954 2293 210 78 3.51 111 3.33 117 11705 8170 .698 .288 .288
Earl Hamilton 1911 1924 14 .282 115 147 262 97 2342 2319 1075 822 773 790 43 70 3.16 102 3.31 97 9745 8069 .828 .282 .282
Earl Moore 1901 1914 14 .279 163 154 326 46 2776 2474 1231 856 1108 1403 57 106 2.78 111 3.13 99 11507 8833 .768 .274 .279
Earl Whitehill 1923 1939 17 .289 218 185 473 46 3564 3917 2018 1726 1431 1350 192 101 4.36 100 4.29 102 15781 12707 .805 .293 .289
Earl Wilson 1959 1970 12 .272 121 109 310 15 2051 1863 934 842 796 1452 236 30 3.69 99 3.82 96 8677 6163 .710 .264 .272
Early Wynn 1939 1963 25 .272 300 244 611 67 4564 4291 2037 1796 1775 2334 338 64 3.54 107 3.64 104 19408 14897 .768 .265 .272
Ed Brandt 1928 1938 11 .289 121 146 278 70 2268 2342 1084 974 778 877 134 35 3.86 100 4.14 93 9721 7897 .812 .280 .289
Ed Morris 1884 1890 7 .292 171 122 307 4 2678 2468 1312 838 498 1217 42 59 2.82 115 2.91 111 11073 9257 .836 .262 .292
Ed Reulbach 1905 1917 13 .274 182 106 300 79 2632 2117 887 668 892 1137 33 107 2.28 123 2.84 99 10521 8352 .794 .250 .274
Ed Walsh 1904 1917 14 .274 195 126 315 105 2964 2346 873 598 617 1736 23 52 1.82 145 2.02 131 11413 8985 .787 .259 .274
Ed Whitson 1977 1991 15 .280 126 123 333 48 2240 2240 1045 944 698 1266 211 29 3.79 98 3.82 97 9479 7275 .767 .279 .280
Eddie Cicotte 1905 1920 16 .275 209 148 361 107 3226 2897 1161 853 827 1374 32 52 2.38 123 2.54 115 12731 10446 .821 .274 .275
Eddie Lopat 1944 1955 12 .272 166 112 318 14 2439 2464 1008 869 650 859 179 43 3.21 116 3.60 103 10197 8466 .830 .270 .272
Eddie Plank 1901 1917 17 .278 326 194 529 77 4495 3958 1566 1174 1072 2246 42 190 2.35 122 2.45 117 17803 14253 .801 .275 .278
Eddie Rommel 1920 1932 13 .291 171 119 249 183 2557 2729 1213 1006 724 599 138 33 3.54 121 4.15 103 10871 9377 .863 .276 .291
Edwin Jackson 2003 2016 14 .295 93 114 275 30 1724 1828 964 890 681 1328 194 34 4.65 90 4.27 98 7513 5276 .702 .310 .295
Egyptian Healy 1885 1892 8 .289 78 136 222 5 1875 1920 1270 799 599 822 63 70 3.84 93 3.54 101 8148 6594 .809 .282 .289
Elam Vangilder 1919 1929 11 .289 99 102 187 120 1715 1894 1014 815 700 474 93 42 4.28 101 4.43 98 7568 6259 .827 .288 .289
Elden Auker 1933 1942 10 .284 130 101 261 40 1963 2230 1106 964 706 594 129 36 4.42 101 4.29 104 8686 7221 .831 .291 .284
Eppa Rixey 1912 1933 22 .285 266 251 554 99 4494 4633 1986 1572 1082 1350 93 76 3.15 115 3.29 110 18754 16153 .861 .281 .285
Ervin Santana 2005 2016 12 .295 133 116 343 1 2172 2099 1065 988 678 1738 276 92 4.09 101 4.22 98 9163 6379 .696 .286 .295
Esteban Loaiza 1995 2008 14 .295 126 114 333 16 2099 2352 1170 1084 604 1382 259 75 4.65 98 4.34 105 9106 6786 .745 .308 .295
Felix Hernandez 2005 2016 12 .295 154 109 359 0 2415 2157 946 848 695 2264 203 81 3.16 126 3.29 121 9906 6663 .673 .293 .295
Fergie Jenkins 1965 1983 19 .275 284 226 594 37 4500 4142 1853 1669 997 3192 484 84 3.34 115 3.28 117 18400 13643 .741 .268 .275
Fernando Valenzuela 1980 1997 18 .285 173 153 424 10 2930 2718 1303 1154 1151 2074 226 25 3.54 104 3.61 102 12398 8922 .720 .279 .285
Firpo Marberry 1923 1936 14 .290 148 88 186 272 2067 2049 971 834 686 822 96 38 3.63 116 3.92 107 8759 7117 .813 .274 .290
Flint Rhem 1924 1936 13 .290 105 97 230 41 1725 1958 989 805 529 534 113 20 4.20 98 4.24 97 7516 6320 .841 .292 .290
Floyd Bannister 1977 1992 16 .280 134 143 363 13 2388 2320 1189 1078 846 1723 291 40 4.06 102 4.00 104 10187 7287 .715 .278 .280
Frank Dwyer 1888 1899 12 .299 177 151 318 48 2819 3312 1782 1204 764 565 108 101 3.84 114 4.10 107 12429 10891 .876 .294 .299
Frank Foreman 1884 1902 19 .297 96 93 205 23 1721 1857 1186 760 659 586 47 142 3.97 101 4.04 99 7726 6292 .814 .288 .297
Frank Killen 1891 1900 10 .301 164 131 300 17 2511 2730 1571 1054 822 725 55 85 3.78 108 3.86 106 10951 9264 .846 .289 .301
Frank Kitson 1898 1907 10 .286 129 118 250 50 2221 2331 1087 784 491 731 52 81 3.18 99 3.11 101 9212 7857 .853 .290 .286
Frank Lary 1954 1965 12 .272 128 116 292 30 2162 2123 960 838 616 1099 197 97 3.49 114 3.64 109 9107 7098 .779 .271 .272
Frank Smith 1904 1915 12 .275 139 111 255 78 2273 1975 891 655 676 1051 27 41 2.59 101 2.52 104 9064 7269 .802 .268 .275
Frank Tanana 1973 1993 21 .280 240 236 616 10 4188 4063 1910 1704 1255 2773 448 129 3.66 106 3.79 102 17641 13036 .739 .277 .280
Frank Viola 1982 1996 15 .284 176 150 420 0 2836 2827 1303 1175 864 1844 294 48 3.73 112 3.81 110 11933 8883 .744 .285 .284
Fred Frankhouse 1927 1939 13 .289 106 97 213 115 1888 2033 969 822 701 622 111 43 3.92 100 4.37 90 8287 6810 .822 .282 .289
Fred Norman 1962 1980 19 .274 104 103 268 42 1939 1790 864 784 815 1303 188 23 3.64 98 3.81 94 8279 5950 .719 .269 .274
Fred Toney 1911 1923 13 .281 139 102 271 49 2206 2037 835 659 583 718 58 46 2.69 113 3.12 97 8988 7583 .844 .261 .281
Freddie Fitzsimmons 1925 1943 19 .286 217 146 424 65 3223 3335 1505 1257 846 870 187 33 3.51 112 4.06 97 13570 11634 .857 .271 .286
Freddy Garcia 1999 2013 15 .294 156 108 357 13 2264 2243 1101 1045 708 1621 285 67 4.15 107 4.30 103 9595 6914 .721 .283 .294
Fritz Ostermueller 1934 1948 15 .279 114 115 246 86 2066 2170 1062 917 835 774 105 21 3.99 109 3.94 110 9116 7381 .810 .280 .279
Fritz Peterson 1966 1976 11 .273 133 131 330 9 2218 2217 947 813 426 1015 173 42 3.30 101 3.25 103 9103 7447 .818 .274 .273
Gary Bell 1958 1969 12 .271 121 117 233 163 2015 1794 932 825 842 1378 207 54 3.68 98 3.83 94 8561 6080 .710 .261 .271
Gary Peters 1959 1972 14 .271 124 103 286 35 2081 1894 847 751 706 1420 157 62 3.25 106 3.24 106 8707 6362 .731 .273 .271
Gaylord Perry 1962 1983 22 .275 314 265 690 33 5350 4938 2128 1846 1379 3534 399 108 3.11 117 3.06 119 21953 16533 .753 .275 .275
General Crowder 1926 1936 11 .289 167 115 292 71 2344 2453 1204 1072 800 799 137 16 4.12 105 4.20 103 10070 8318 .826 .278 .289
Geoff Zahn 1973 1985 13 .279 111 109 270 13 1849 1978 889 769 526 705 149 19 3.74 107 3.86 104 7798 6399 .821 .286 .279
George Blaeholder 1925 1936 12 .290 104 125 251 55 1914 2220 1119 966 535 572 173 13 4.54 103 4.52 103 8373 7080 .846 .289 .290
George Bradley 1875 1884 10 .294 171 151 325 23 2940 3009 1696 795 196 671 45 2.43 105 2.59 99 12377 11465 .926 .259 .294
George Earnshaw 1928 1936 9 .290 127 93 249 45 1915 1981 1063 933 809 1002 142 25 4.38 100 4.36 100 8450 6472 .766 .284 .290
George Mogridge 1911 1927 17 .283 132 133 261 102 2265 2352 1003 812 565 678 77 76 3.23 109 3.43 103 9432 8036 .852 .283 .283
George Mullin 1902 1915 14 .277 228 196 428 51 3686 3518 1636 1156 1238 1482 42 130 2.82 101 2.91 98 15179 12287 .809 .283 .277
George Uhle 1919 1936 18 .290 200 166 368 115 3119 3417 1635 1384 966 1135 119 113 3.99 106 3.83 110 13597 11264 .828 .293 .290
George Zettlein 1871 1876 6 .313 129 112 244 8 2176 2678 1709 616 145 143 17 2.55 114 2.84 102 9912 9607 .969 .277 .313
Gerry Staley 1947 1961 15 .272 134 111 186 246 1981 2070 946 814 529 727 186 63 3.70 109 3.87 104 8398 6893 .821 .273 .272
Greg Maddux 1986 2008 23 .291 355 227 740 3 5008 4726 1981 1756 999 3371 353 137 3.16 132 3.26 128 20421 15561 .762 .281 .291
Greg Swindell 1986 2002 17 .289 123 122 269 93 2233 2313 1053 957 501 1542 262 21 3.86 107 3.77 110 9301 6975 .750 .294 .289
Gus Weyhing 1887 1901 15 .299 264 232 505 34 4337 4576 2796 1872 1570 1667 120 277 3.88 102 3.82 104 19188 15554 .811 .286 .299
Guy Bush 1923 1945 23 .285 176 136 308 146 2722 2950 1366 1166 859 850 151 41 3.86 104 4.16 97 11750 9849 .838 .284 .285
Guy Hecker 1882 1890 9 .292 175 146 322 13 2924 2922 1726 951 492 1110 50 72 2.93 113 3.12 106 12415 10691 .861 .269 .292
Hal Carlson 1917 1930 14 .287 114 120 236 96 2002 2256 1013 883 498 590 92 36 3.97 100 3.71 107 8522 7306 .857 .296 .287
Hal Newhouser 1939 1955 17 .273 207 150 374 79 2993 2674 1197 1016 1249 1796 136 19 3.06 130 3.19 125 12648 9448 .747 .269 .273
Hal Schumacher 1931 1946 16 .281 158 121 329 37 2482 2424 1080 926 902 906 140 24 3.36 111 4.02 93 10571 8599 .813 .266 .281
Hardie Henderson 1883 1888 6 .292 81 121 206 4 1788 1800 1230 696 522 930 25 51 3.50 98 3.21 107 7852 6324 .805 .281 .292
Harry Brecheen 1940 1953 14 .272 133 92 240 53 1907 1731 701 618 536 901 116 37 2.92 133 3.26 119 7821 6231 .797 .259 .272
Harry Gumbert 1935 1950 16 .278 143 113 235 179 2156 2186 1012 882 721 709 120 23 3.68 102 3.85 97 9217 7644 .829 .270 .278
Harry Howell 1898 1910 13 .281 131 146 282 53 2567 2435 1158 781 677 986 27 97 2.74 109 2.79 107 10442 8655 .829 .278 .281
Harry Staley 1888 1895 8 .297 136 119 257 25 2269 2468 1472 959 601 746 93 48 3.80 105 3.68 108 9837 8349 .849 .284 .297
Harvey Haddix 1952 1965 14 .271 136 113 286 84 2235 2154 1012 901 601 1575 240 43 3.63 108 3.34 117 9330 6871 .736 .279 .271
Henry Porter 1884 1889 6 .291 96 107 206 1 1793 1893 1209 737 466 659 43 52 3.70 95 3.39 104 7822 6602 .844 .280 .291
Herb Pennock 1912 1934 23 .285 241 162 419 135 3571 3900 1699 1428 916 1227 128 36 3.60 106 3.50 109 15096 12789 .847 .295 .285
Herm Wehmeier 1945 1958 14 .272 92 108 240 48 1803 1806 1044 961 852 794 210 31 4.80 84 4.58 88 7925 6038 .762 .264 .272
Hideo Nomo 1995 2008 14 .295 123 109 318 2 1976 1768 993 932 908 1918 251 38 4.24 97 4.23 97 8462 5347 .632 .284 .295
Hippo Vaughn 1908 1921 14 .277 178 137 332 45 2730 2461 1039 754 817 1416 39 85 2.49 119 2.62 113 11225 8868 .790 .273 .277
Hooks Dauss 1912 1926 15 .283 223 182 388 120 3390 3407 1594 1245 1067 1201 87 121 3.30 102 3.33 101 14175 11699 .825 .284 .283
Hooks Wiltse 1904 1915 12 .275 139 90 225 109 2112 1892 787 580 498 965 54 40 2.47 112 2.56 108 8413 6856 .815 .268 .275
Howard Ehmke 1915 1930 16 .285 166 166 338 68 2820 2873 1424 1174 1042 1030 103 137 3.75 104 3.87 101 12081 9769 .809 .284 .285
Howie Camnitz 1904 1915 12 .275 133 106 237 74 2085 1852 857 637 656 915 41 65 2.75 107 2.86 103 8426 6749 .801 .268 .275
Howie Pollet 1941 1956 16 .271 131 116 277 54 2107 2096 957 821 745 934 146 23 3.51 113 3.59 110 8981 7133 .794 .273 .271
Hoyt Wilhelm 1952 1972 21 .271 143 122 52 651 2254 1757 773 632 778 1610 150 62 2.52 147 3.06 121 9164 6564 .716 .245 .271
Ice Box Chamberlain 1886 1896 11 .298 157 120 301 19 2521 2446 1560 999 1065 1133 63 113 3.57 111 3.72 107 11097 8723 .786 .273 .298
Ismael Valdez 1994 2005 12 .294 104 105 288 12 1827 1872 892 830 523 1173 234 47 4.09 102 4.41 95 7760 5783 .745 .283 .294
Jack Billingham 1968 1980 13 .275 145 113 305 83 2231 2272 1069 949 750 1141 176 98 3.83 94 3.72 97 9487 7322 .772 .286 .275
Jack Chesbro 1899 1909 11 .281 198 132 332 52 2896 2647 1206 864 690 1265 39 113 2.68 111 2.67 111 11632 9525 .819 .274 .281
Jack Coombs 1906 1920 15 .275 158 110 268 69 2320 2034 925 717 841 1052 38 88 2.78 99 2.92 94 9459 7440 .787 .268 .275
Jack Fisher 1959 1969 11 .271 86 139 265 65 1975 2061 1024 891 605 1017 193 52 4.06 88 3.77 95 8452 6585 .779 .284 .271
Jack Lynch 1881 1890 10 .292 110 105 216 5 1924 2048 1224 789 295 859 54 29 3.69 88 3.08 105 8215 6978 .849 .286 .292
Jack McDowell 1987 1999 13 .289 127 87 275 0 1889 1854 874 809 606 1311 173 48 3.85 111 3.80 112 7966 5828 .732 .288 .289
Jack Morris 1977 1994 18 .282 254 186 527 10 3824 3567 1815 1657 1390 2478 389 58 3.90 105 3.94 104 16120 11805 .732 .269 .282
Jack Powell 1897 1912 16 .284 245 254 516 57 4389 4319 1991 1450 1021 1621 110 120 2.97 106 3.01 105 17896 15024 .840 .280 .284
Jack Quinn 1909 1933 25 .284 247 218 443 218 3920 4238 1837 1433 860 1329 103 91 3.29 114 3.17 118 16356 13973 .854 .296 .284
Jack Russell 1926 1940 15 .288 85 141 182 209 2050 2454 1187 1017 571 418 83 26 4.46 97 4.07 106 9020 7922 .878 .299 .288
Jack Sanford 1956 1967 12 .272 137 101 293 42 2049 1907 952 840 737 1182 174 46 3.69 99 3.63 101 8659 6520 .753 .266 .272
Jack Scott 1916 1929 14 .284 103 109 195 124 1814 1969 904 776 493 657 95 43 3.85 95 3.77 97 7758 6470 .834 .290 .284
Jack Stivetts 1889 1899 11 .301 203 132 333 52 2887 2905 1836 1199 1155 1223 130 99 3.74 120 4.10 109 12636 10029 .794 .277 .301
Jack Taylor 1891 1899 9 .302 120 117 235 31 2091 2476 1423 981 583 529 74 126 4.22 103 4.24 103 9213 7901 .858 .304 .302
Jack Taylor 1898 1907 10 .286 152 139 287 24 2626 2504 1195 774 584 662 41 94 2.65 115 3.12 98 10705 9324 .871 .264 .286
Jaime Navarro 1989 2000 12 .291 116 126 309 16 2055 2313 1206 1078 690 1113 214 67 4.72 90 4.38 97 9021 6937 .769 .303 .291
Jake Peavy 2002 2016 15 .294 152 126 377 3 2377 2134 1011 960 708 2207 259 78 3.63 110 3.65 109 9838 6586 .669 .285 .294
Jake Westbrook 2000 2013 14 .294 105 103 273 11 1747 1885 922 839 571 965 148 68 4.32 96 4.17 99 7517 5765 .767 .301 .294
James Shields 2006 2016 11 .295 133 116 351 0 2294 2275 1080 996 615 1977 300 85 3.91 105 4.00 103 9606 6629 .690 .298 .295
Jamey Wright 1996 2014 19 .295 97 130 248 133 2036 2168 1208 1088 978 1189 200 155 4.81 96 4.87 95 9038 6516 .721 .302 .295
Jamie Moyer 1986 2012 27 .291 269 209 638 15 4074 4231 2076 1926 1155 2441 522 146 4.25 103 4.47 98 17356 13092 .754 .283 .291
Jarrod Washburn 1998 2009 12 .295 107 109 300 4 1863 1855 900 848 569 1103 240 65 4.10 108 4.60 96 7889 5912 .749 .273 .295
Jason Marquis 2000 2015 16 .294 124 118 318 26 1968 2079 1114 1008 769 1174 253 88 4.61 93 4.87 88 8623 6339 .735 .288 .294
Jason Schmidt 1995 2009 15 .295 130 96 314 1 1996 1846 958 878 792 1758 184 52 3.96 110 3.79 115 8532 5746 .673 .289 .295
Javier Vazquez 1998 2011 14 .294 165 160 443 5 2840 2784 1431 1331 763 2536 373 88 4.22 105 3.91 113 11935 8175 .685 .295 .294
Jeff Fassero 1991 2006 16 .293 121 124 242 146 2033 2083 1042 929 724 1643 214 37 4.11 107 3.95 111 8810 6192 .703 .302 .293
Jeff Pfeffer 1911 1924 14 .282 158 112 279 54 2407 2320 921 742 592 836 67 105 2.77 113 3.13 100 9968 8368 .839 .269 .282
Jeff Suppan 1995 2012 18 .295 140 146 417 16 2542 2843 1451 1328 871 1390 337 94 4.70 97 4.86 94 11139 8447 .758 .297 .295
Jeff Weaver 1999 2010 12 .294 104 119 274 21 1838 1997 1023 961 516 1214 227 124 4.71 93 4.41 99 7970 5889 .739 .301 .294
Jered Weaver 2006 2016 11 .295 150 93 322 0 2025 1861 838 798 539 1598 246 51 3.55 113 3.99 101 8340 5906 .708 .273 .295
Jeremy Guthrie 2004 2015 12 .295 91 108 272 12 1764 1856 920 857 506 1046 250 88 4.37 98 4.77 90 7546 5656 .750 .284 .295
Jerry Koosman 1967 1985 19 .276 222 209 527 43 3839 3635 1608 1433 1198 2556 290 71 3.36 110 3.26 113 15996 11881 .743 .282 .276
Jerry Reuss 1969 1990 22 .278 220 191 547 41 3669 3734 1700 1483 1127 1907 245 59 3.64 100 3.45 106 15582 12244 .786 .285 .278
Jersey Bakley 1883 1891 9 .292 76 125 204 11 1782 1909 1321 725 564 669 43 37 3.66 94 3.46 99 7887 6574 .834 .284 .292
Jesse Barnes 1915 1927 13 .283 152 150 312 78 2569 2686 1150 918 515 653 89 25 3.22 105 3.34 101 10676 9394 .880 .276 .283
Jesse Haines 1918 1937 20 .288 210 158 387 96 3208 3460 1556 1298 871 981 165 57 3.64 109 3.95 100 13644 11570 .848 .285 .288
Jesse Tannehill 1894 1911 18 .289 197 117 321 37 2759 2794 1199 858 478 944 40 130 2.80 114 2.86 112 11236 9644 .858 .286 .289
Jim Barr 1971 1983 13 .277 101 112 252 75 2065 2170 908 816 469 741 161 30 3.56 105 3.64 103 8612 7211 .837 .279 .277
Jim Bunning 1955 1971 17 .271 224 184 519 39 3760 3433 1527 1366 1000 2855 372 160 3.27 115 3.22 117 15618 11231 .719 .273 .271
Jim Clancy 1977 1991 15 .280 140 167 381 38 2517 2513 1304 1182 947 1422 244 32 4.23 98 4.04 103 10772 8127 .754 .279 .280
Jim Kaat 1959 1983 25 .274 283 237 625 102 4530 4620 2038 1738 1083 2461 395 122 3.45 108 3.41 109 19023 14962 .787 .282 .274
Jim Lonborg 1965 1979 15 .274 157 137 368 24 2464 2400 1170 1056 823 1475 233 105 3.86 95 3.71 99 10498 7862 .749 .276 .274
Jim Maloney 1960 1971 12 .272 134 84 262 18 1849 1518 729 655 810 1605 138 36 3.19 115 3.13 117 7745 5156 .666 .268 .272
Jim McCormick 1878 1887 10 .293 265 214 485 7 4275 4092 2095 1155 749 1704 82 12 2.43 118 2.88 100 17702 15155 .856 .265 .293
Jim Palmer 1965 1984 20 .275 268 152 521 15 3948 3349 1395 1253 1311 2212 303 38 2.86 125 3.50 102 16114 12250 .760 .249 .275
Jim Perry 1959 1975 17 .272 215 174 447 64 3285 3127 1407 1258 998 1576 308 80 3.45 106 3.78 97 13732 10770 .784 .262 .272
Jim Rooker 1968 1980 13 .275 103 109 255 23 1810 1694 814 696 703 976 128 18 3.46 104 3.64 99 7668 5843 .762 .268 .275
Jim Slaton 1971 1986 16 .278 151 158 360 71 2683 2773 1335 1202 1004 1191 277 48 4.03 94 4.27 89 11535 9015 .782 .277 .278
Jim Tobin 1937 1945 9 .277 105 112 227 47 1900 1929 861 726 557 498 107 29 3.44 106 3.77 97 8074 6883 .852 .265 .277
Jim Whitney 1881 1890 10 .292 191 204 396 16 3496 3598 2026 1154 411 1571 79 28 2.97 105 2.75 113 14666 12577 .858 .280 .292
Jimmy Key 1984 1998 15 .287 186 117 389 28 2591 2518 1104 1010 668 1538 254 38 3.51 122 3.80 113 10719 8221 .767 .275 .287
Jimmy Ring 1917 1928 12 .285 118 149 294 56 2357 2551 1329 1082 953 833 105 30 4.13 96 3.99 99 10330 8409 .814 .291 .285
Joaquin Andujar 1976 1988 13 .280 127 118 305 37 2153 2016 955 857 731 1032 155 51 3.58 99 3.79 94 9008 7039 .781 .264 .280
Joe Coleman 1965 1979 15 .274 142 135 340 70 2569 2416 1202 1055 1003 1728 233 90 3.70 97 3.65 98 10948 7894 .721 .277 .274
Joe Dobson 1939 1954 16 .273 137 103 273 84 2170 2048 981 874 851 992 137 10 3.62 112 3.64 111 9159 7169 .783 .267 .273
Joe Horlen 1961 1972 12 .271 116 117 290 31 2002 1829 783 691 554 1065 145 53 3.11 110 3.31 103 8234 6417 .779 .262 .271
Joe McGinnity 1899 1908 10 .283 246 142 381 73 3441 3276 1436 1016 812 1068 52 179 2.66 120 3.04 105 14132 12021 .851 .268 .283
Joe Niekro 1967 1988 22 .277 221 204 500 93 3584 3466 1620 1431 1262 1747 276 65 3.59 98 3.79 93 15166 11816 .779 .270 .277
Joe Nuxhall 1944 1966 23 .272 135 117 287 100 2302 2310 1093 998 776 1372 209 70 3.90 102 3.57 111 9813 7386 .753 .284 .272
Joe Oeschger 1914 1925 12 .282 82 116 199 114 1818 1936 947 770 651 535 61 67 3.81 88 3.74 90 7814 6500 .832 .288 .282
Joe Shaute 1922 1934 13 .290 99 109 208 102 1818 2097 1043 838 534 512 76 24 4.15 99 3.90 105 7901 6755 .855 .299 .290
Johan Santana 2000 2012 13 .294 139 78 284 23 2025 1726 773 721 567 1988 220 36 3.20 136 3.44 127 8262 5451 .660 .276 .294
John Burkett 1987 2003 17 .290 166 136 423 8 2648 2866 1374 1268 700 1766 257 90 4.31 99 3.85 111 11324 8511 .752 .307 .290
John Candelaria 1975 1993 19 .280 177 122 356 82 2525 2399 1038 935 592 1673 245 37 3.33 114 3.41 111 10366 7819 .754 .275 .280
John Clarkson 1882 1894 13 .294 328 178 518 12 4536 4295 2384 1417 1191 1978 159 80 2.81 133 3.35 112 19146 15738 .822 .263 .294
John Denny 1974 1986 13 .279 123 108 322 0 2148 2093 967 856 778 1146 137 54 3.59 105 3.62 104 9077 6962 .767 .281 .279
John Lackey 2002 2016 15 .294 176 135 416 0 2669 2697 1254 1150 762 2145 283 121 3.88 110 3.86 111 11299 7988 .707 .302 .294
John Smiley 1986 1997 12 .287 126 103 280 21 1907 1842 888 806 496 1284 185 39 3.80 102 3.69 105 7900 5896 .746 .281 .287
John Smoltz 1988 2009 22 .291 213 155 481 204 3473 3074 1391 1284 1010 3084 288 57 3.33 125 3.24 128 14271 9832 .689 .283 .291
John Ward 1878 1884 7 .294 164 103 262 32 2469 2324 1185 576 253 920 26 2.10 119 2.43 103 10164 8965 .882 .256 .294
Johnny Allen 1932 1944 13 .282 142 75 241 68 1950 1849 924 813 738 1070 103 38 3.75 113 3.69 115 8292 6343 .765 .275 .282
Johnny Antonelli 1948 1961 14 .272 126 110 268 61 1992 1870 860 739 687 1162 186 38 3.34 116 3.61 107 8424 6351 .754 .265 .272
Johnny Klippstein 1950 1967 18 .272 101 118 161 275 1967 1915 1059 927 978 1158 203 70 4.24 94 4.24 94 8656 6247 .722 .274 .272
Johnny Podres 1953 1969 17 .271 148 116 340 46 2265 2239 1026 925 743 1435 242 28 3.68 105 3.65 106 9571 7123 .744 .280 .271
Johnny Sain 1942 1955 14 .271 139 116 245 125 2125 2145 947 824 619 910 179 30 3.49 107 3.66 102 8998 7260 .807 .271 .271
Johnny Schmitz 1941 1956 16 .271 93 114 235 80 1812 1766 841 714 757 746 97 35 3.55 107 3.67 104 7779 6144 .790 .272 .271
Johnny Vander Meer 1937 1951 15 .275 119 121 286 28 2104 1799 915 805 1132 1294 100 21 3.44 107 3.64 101 9034 6487 .718 .262 .275
Jon Garland 2000 2013 14 .294 136 125 342 9 2151 2260 1149 1045 723 1156 263 63 4.37 103 4.69 96 9197 6992 .760 .286 .294
Jon Lester 2006 2016 11 .295 146 84 316 0 2003 1829 819 766 644 1861 182 69 3.44 124 3.50 122 8307 5551 .668 .297 .295
Jon Lieber 1994 2008 15 .295 131 124 327 18 2198 2388 1158 1043 422 1553 285 49 4.27 103 4.02 109 9300 6991 .752 .301 .295
Jon Matlack 1971 1983 13 .277 125 126 318 23 2363 2276 970 835 638 1516 161 26 3.18 114 3.06 118 9789 7448 .761 .284 .277
Jose DeLeon 1983 1995 13 .284 86 119 264 36 1897 1556 877 793 841 1594 153 62 3.76 102 3.61 106 7985 5335 .668 .263 .284
Jose Rijo 1984 2002 19 .288 116 91 269 43 1880 1710 772 676 663 1606 147 28 3.24 121 3.28 120 7867 5423 .689 .288 .288
Josh Beckett 2001 2014 14 .294 138 106 332 1 2051 1897 957 884 629 1901 238 76 3.88 111 3.78 114 8579 5735 .668 .289 .294
Jouett Meekin 1891 1900 10 .301 152 133 308 16 2605 2837 1706 1177 1056 901 67 89 4.07 102 4.11 101 11543 9430 .817 .294 .301
Juan Marichal 1960 1975 16 .272 243 142 457 11 3507 3153 1329 1126 709 2303 320 40 2.89 123 3.04 117 14236 10864 .763 .261 .272
Juan Pizarro 1957 1974 18 .272 131 105 245 119 2034 1807 890 776 888 1522 201 41 3.43 104 3.68 97 8690 6038 .695 .266 .272
Justin Verlander 2005 2016 12 .295 173 106 352 0 2339 2072 981 902 699 2197 217 80 3.47 123 3.44 124 9664 6471 .670 .287 .295
Ken Forsch 1970 1986 17 .278 114 113 241 177 2127 2071 881 796 586 1047 155 47 3.37 106 3.49 102 8852 7017 .793 .273 .278
Ken Hill 1988 2001 14 .290 117 109 315 4 1973 1938 977 891 852 1181 162 47 4.06 106 4.24 102 8520 6278 .737 .283 .290
Ken Holtzman 1965 1979 15 .274 174 150 410 18 2867 2787 1273 1111 910 1601 249 49 3.49 105 3.57 103 12069 9260 .767 .274 .274
Ken Raffensberger 1939 1954 16 .273 119 154 282 66 2151 2257 993 860 449 806 191 19 3.60 110 3.59 110 9051 7586 .838 .272 .273
Kenny Rogers 1989 2008 20 .292 219 156 474 133 3302 3457 1739 1568 1175 1968 339 127 4.27 107 4.38 104 14280 10671 .747 .292 .292
Kevin Appier 1989 2004 16 .291 169 137 402 2 2595 2425 1168 1078 933 1994 232 79 3.74 121 3.81 119 10958 7720 .705 .284 .291
Kevin Brown 1986 2005 20 .290 211 144 476 1 3256 3079 1357 1185 901 2397 208 139 3.28 127 3.33 125 13542 9897 .731 .290 .290
Kevin Gross 1983 1997 15 .286 142 158 368 38 2487 2519 1245 1137 986 1727 230 79 4.11 95 3.96 99 10791 7769 .720 .295 .286
Kevin Millwood 1997 2012 16 .294 169 152 443 3 2720 2770 1357 1243 843 2083 296 74 4.11 106 3.99 109 11616 8320 .716 .297 .294
Kevin Tapani 1989 2001 13 .291 143 125 354 1 2265 2407 1168 1094 554 1482 260 53 4.35 101 4.01 110 9600 7251 .755 .296 .291
Kid Carsey 1891 1901 11 .301 116 138 257 38 2233 2794 1728 1229 800 486 80 125 4.95 85 4.36 97 10251 8760 .855 .310 .301
Kid Gleason 1888 1895 8 .297 138 131 266 30 2389 2552 1511 1007 906 744 76 78 3.79 104 3.93 100 10617 8813 .830 .281 .297
Kid Nichols 1890 1906 17 .295 361 208 562 56 5067 4929 2480 1664 1272 1881 156 129 2.96 140 3.48 119 21082 17644 .837 .271 .295
Kirby Higbe 1937 1950 14 .276 118 101 238 104 1952 1763 909 800 979 971 116 35 3.69 102 3.95 95 8472 6371 .752 .259 .276
Kirk Rueter 1993 2005 13 .294 130 92 336 1 1918 2092 1004 911 582 818 220 25 4.27 97 4.66 89 8210 6565 .800 .285 .294
Kyle Lohse 2001 2016 16 .294 147 143 418 15 2531 2711 1327 1239 694 1615 316 87 4.40 96 4.35 97 10839 8127 .750 .295 .294
Larry Benton 1923 1935 13 .290 128 128 261 113 2297 2559 1190 1029 691 670 108 25 4.03 98 4.02 98 9864 8370 .849 .293 .290
Larry Cheney 1911 1919 9 .277 116 100 225 63 1881 1605 784 564 733 926 36 59 2.70 109 3.00 98 7865 6111 .777 .257 .277
Larry Corcoran 1880 1887 8 .292 177 89 268 9 2392 2147 1235 626 496 1103 68 2 2.36 123 2.99 97 10001 8332 .833 .250 .292
Larry Dierker 1964 1977 14 .273 139 123 329 10 2333 2130 948 857 711 1493 184 50 3.31 103 3.26 105 9661 7223 .748 .269 .273
Larry French 1929 1942 14 .286 197 171 383 108 3152 3375 1440 1206 819 1187 164 42 3.44 114 3.76 104 13465 11253 .836 .285 .286
Larry Gura 1970 1985 16 .277 126 97 261 60 2047 2020 958 855 600 801 204 46 3.76 106 4.14 96 8596 6945 .808 .261 .277
Larry Jackson 1955 1968 14 .271 194 183 429 73 3262 3206 1405 1233 824 1709 259 68 3.40 113 3.32 116 13593 10733 .790 .275 .271
Lee Meadows 1915 1929 15 .284 188 180 406 59 3160 3280 1491 1185 956 1063 85 90 3.37 106 3.41 105 13371 11177 .836 .286 .284
Lefty Gomez 1930 1943 14 .284 189 102 320 31 2503 2290 1091 930 1095 1468 138 19 3.34 125 3.88 108 10729 8009 .746 .269 .284
Lefty Grove 1925 1941 17 .288 300 141 457 123 3940 3849 1594 1339 1187 2266 162 42 3.06 148 3.36 135 16622 12965 .780 .284 .288
Lefty Tyler 1910 1921 12 .279 127 116 267 45 2230 1990 947 730 829 1003 51 67 2.95 102 3.11 97 9222 7272 .789 .267 .279
Lew Burdette 1950 1967 18 .272 203 144 373 128 3067 3186 1400 1246 628 1074 289 56 3.66 99 3.68 98 12745 10698 .839 .271 .272
Lindy McDaniel 1955 1975 21 .272 141 119 74 577 2139 2099 934 821 623 1361 172 15 3.45 110 3.19 119 8971 6800 .758 .283 .272
Livan Hernandez 1996 2012 17 .295 178 177 474 17 3189 3525 1686 1572 1066 1976 362 78 4.44 95 4.40 96 13816 10334 .748 .306 .295
Lon Warneke 1930 1945 16 .283 192 121 343 66 2782 2726 1164 984 739 1140 175 27 3.18 119 3.74 101 11608 9527 .821 .268 .283
Luis Tiant 1964 1982 19 .275 229 172 484 51 3486 3075 1400 1280 1104 2416 346 49 3.30 114 3.47 108 14365 10450 .727 .261 .275
Mark Baldwin 1887 1893 7 .291 154 165 328 19 2802 2695 1816 1050 1307 1349 81 123 3.37 112 3.79 100 12470 9610 .771 .272 .291
Mark Buehrle 2000 2015 16 .294 214 160 493 6 3283 3472 1542 1391 734 1870 361 79 3.81 117 4.11 108 13705 10661 .778 .292 .294
Mark Gardner 1989 2001 13 .291 99 93 275 20 1764 1752 960 894 628 1256 237 65 4.56 88 4.53 89 7540 5354 .710 .283 .291
Mark Gubicza 1984 1997 14 .286 132 136 329 14 2223 2239 1063 978 786 1371 155 58 3.96 109 3.68 117 9487 7117 .750 .293 .286
Mark Langston 1984 1999 16 .287 179 158 428 3 2962 2723 1438 1306 1289 2464 311 46 3.97 107 3.93 108 12562 8452 .673 .285 .287
Mark Portugal 1985 1999 15 .288 109 95 283 24 1826 1813 896 817 607 1134 209 36 4.03 100 4.27 94 7726 5740 .743 .279 .288
Marty Pattin 1968 1980 13 .275 114 109 224 119 2038 1933 905 820 603 1179 209 45 3.62 102 3.69 100 8501 6465 .760 .267 .275
Matt Cain 2005 2016 12 .295 101 107 308 3 1961 1692 825 778 663 1619 193 60 3.57 111 3.84 103 8131 5596 .688 .268 .295
Matt Kilroy 1886 1898 13 .298 141 133 292 12 2435 2445 1539 939 754 1170 53 131 3.47 108 3.43 109 10604 8496 .801 .282 .298
Matt Morris 1997 2008 12 .295 121 92 276 12 1806 1867 889 799 509 1214 175 74 3.98 107 3.97 107 7669 5697 .743 .297 .295
Max Butcher 1936 1945 10 .279 95 106 229 59 1787 1938 889 744 583 485 100 23 3.75 101 3.95 96 7768 6577 .847 .279 .279
Mel Harder 1928 1947 20 .282 223 186 433 94 3426 3706 1714 1447 1118 1161 161 59 3.80 113 3.87 111 14861 12362 .832 .287 .282
Mel Parnell 1947 1956 10 .272 123 75 232 36 1752 1715 797 682 758 732 104 28 3.50 125 3.79 115 7548 5926 .785 .272 .272
Mel Stottlemyre 1964 1974 11 .272 164 139 356 3 2661 2435 1003 878 809 1257 171 44 2.97 112 3.37 99 10972 8691 .792 .260 .272
Mickey Lolich 1963 1979 17 .274 217 191 496 40 3638 3366 1537 1390 1099 2832 347 92 3.44 104 3.20 112 15140 10770 .711 .280 .274
Mickey Welch 1880 1892 13 .290 307 210 549 16 4802 4588 2556 1447 1297 1850 106 52 2.71 113 3.28 93 20308 17003 .837 .264 .290
Miguel Batista 1992 2012 21 .294 102 115 248 164 1956 2021 1089 974 899 1250 194 79 4.48 100 4.60 97 8643 6221 .720 .294 .294
Mike Boddicker 1980 1993 14 .281 134 116 309 15 2123 2082 992 897 721 1330 188 87 3.80 108 3.83 107 8999 6673 .742 .284 .281
Mike Caldwell 1971 1984 14 .278 137 130 307 77 2408 2581 1182 1020 597 939 218 35 3.81 99 3.83 98 10156 8367 .824 .282 .278
Mike Cuellar 1959 1977 19 .273 185 130 379 33 2808 2538 1130 979 822 1632 222 12 3.14 109 3.29 104 11505 8817 .766 .263 .273
Mike Flanagan 1975 1992 18 .280 167 143 404 49 2770 2806 1301 1199 890 1491 251 41 3.90 100 3.84 102 11684 9011 .771 .284 .280
Mike Garcia 1948 1961 14 .272 142 97 281 77 2174 2148 888 789 719 1117 122 33 3.27 117 3.20 120 9237 7246 .784 .280 .272
Mike Hampton 1993 2010 18 ..295 148 115 355 12 2268 2370 1157 1024 901 1387 200 49 4.06 107 4.27 102 9824 7287 .742 .298 ..295
Mike Krukow 1976 1989 14 .280 124 117 355 4 2190 2188 1069 949 767 1478 196 47 3.90 96 3.66 102 9393 6905 .735 .288 .280
Mike McCormick 1956 1971 16 .271 134 128 333 69 2380 2281 1100 986 795 1321 256 24 3.73 96 3.84 93 10058 7662 .762 .264 .271
Mike Moore 1982 1995 14 .284 161 176 440 6 2831 2858 1516 1381 1156 1667 291 55 4.39 95 4.27 98 12203 9034 .740 .284 .284
Mike Morgan 1978 2002 25 .286 141 186 411 56 2772 2943 1431 1303 938 1403 270 73 4.23 97 4.27 96 11872 9188 .774 .291 .286
Mike Mussina 1991 2008 18 .293 270 153 536 0 3562 3460 1559 1458 785 2813 376 60 3.68 123 3.57 127 14593 10559 .724 .292 .293
Mike Scott 1979 1991 13 .280 124 108 319 13 2068 1858 908 813 627 1469 173 33 3.54 100 3.38 105 8571 6269 .731 .269 .280
Mike Torrez 1967 1984 18 .276 185 160 458 13 3043 3043 1501 1340 1371 1404 223 59 3.96 98 4.07 95 13179 10122 .768 .279 .276
Mike Witt 1981 1993 13 .281 117 116 299 22 2108 2066 1012 898 713 1373 183 55 3.83 105 3.68 109 8927 6603 .740 .285 .281
Milt Gaston 1924 1934 11 .290 97 164 269 63 2105 2338 1277 1064 836 615 114 24 4.55 96 4.43 99 9271 7682 .829 .290 .290
Milt Pappas 1957 1973 17 .272 209 164 465 33 3186 3046 1331 1203 858 1728 298 72 3.40 110 3.53 106 13198 10242 .776 .268 .272
Milt Wilcox 1970 1986 17 .278 119 113 283 53 2016 1991 1013 913 770 1137 204 74 4.07 97 4.10 96 8635 6450 .747 .277 .278
Mordecai Brown 1903 1916 14 .276 239 130 332 138 3172 2708 1044 725 673 1375 43 61 2.06 139 2.42 118 12422 10270 .827 .259 .276
Mort Cooper 1938 1949 12 .274 128 75 239 39 1840 1666 703 607 571 913 84 28 2.97 124 3.16 117 7648 6052 .791 .261 .274
Mudcat Grant 1958 1971 14 .272 145 119 293 160 2442 2292 1105 985 849 1267 292 33 3.63 100 4.14 88 10293 7852 .763 .255 .272
Murry Dickson 1939 1959 21 .272 172 181 338 148 3052 3029 1431 1240 1058 1281 302 37 3.66 109 4.00 100 12936 10258 .793 .266 .272
Nap Rucker 1907 1916 10 .275 134 134 274 58 2375 2089 823 639 701 1217 41 73 2.42 119 2.60 111 9441 7409 .785 .276 .275
Ned Garver 1948 1961 14 .272 129 157 330 40 2477 2471 1184 1027 881 881 213 41 3.73 112 4.02 104 10584 8568 .810 .264 .272
Nelson Briles 1965 1978 14 .273 129 112 279 74 2111 2141 929 807 547 1163 186 51 3.44 103 3.43 103 8858 6911 .780 .283 .273
Nig Cuppy 1892 1901 10 .302 162 98 262 39 2283 2520 1346 884 609 504 62 69 3.48 127 3.97 111 9827 8583 .873 .286 .302
Nolan Ryan 1966 1993 28 .278 324 292 773 13 5386 3923 2178 1911 2795 5714 321 158 3.19 112 2.97 120 22575 13587 .602 .265 .278
Noodles Hahn 1899 1906 8 .287 130 94 231 11 2029 1916 821 574 381 917 27 52 2.55 132 2.65 127 8126 6749 .831 .280 .287
Old Hoss Radbourn 1881 1891 11 .292 309 194 502 24 4527 4328 2273 1347 875 1830 118 54 2.68 119 3.15 101 18918 16041 .848 .262 .292
Orel Hershiser 1983 2000 18 .287 204 150 466 19 3130 2939 1366 1211 1007 2014 235 117 3.48 112 3.69 106 13150 9777 .743 .277 .287
Pat Dobson 1967 1977 11 .274 122 129 279 51 2120 2043 939 833 665 1301 197 26 3.54 100 3.50 101 8872 6683 .753 .276 .274
Pat Hentgen 1991 2004 14 .292 131 112 306 15 2075 2111 1076 996 775 1290 269 49 4.32 108 4.73 99 8925 6542 .733 .282 .292
Pat Malone 1928 1937 10 .290 134 92 219 107 1915 1934 936 795 705 1024 103 45 3.74 111 3.92 106 8276 6399 .773 .286 .290
Paul Derringer 1931 1945 15 .281 223 212 445 98 3645 3912 1652 1401 761 1507 158 32 3.46 108 3.26 115 15391 12933 .840 .290 .281
Paul Splittorff 1970 1984 15 .277 166 143 392 13 2554 2644 1243 1082 780 1057 192 34 3.81 101 3.73 103 10829 8766 .809 .280 .277
Pedro Astacio 1992 2006 15 .293 129 124 343 11 2196 2292 1213 1140 726 1664 291 111 4.67 97 4.43 102 9472 6680 .705 .300 .293
Pedro Martinez 1992 2009 18 .294 219 100 409 23 2827 2221 1006 919 760 3154 239 141 2.93 154 2.91 155 11394 7100 .623 .279 .294
Pedro Ramos 1955 1970 16 .271 117 160 268 182 2355 2364 1210 1068 724 1305 316 68 4.08 95 4.16 93 10048 7635 .760 .268 .271
Pete Alexander 1911 1930 20 .285 373 208 600 81 5190 4868 1852 1476 951 2198 165 70 2.56 135 2.88 120 20893 17509 .838 .269 .285
Pete Donohue 1921 1932 12 .291 134 118 267 56 2112 2439 1082 909 422 571 67 46 3.87 103 3.58 111 9055 7949 .878 .298 .291
Pete Harnisch 1988 2001 14 .290 111 103 318 1 1959 1822 926 846 716 1368 223 49 3.89 103 4.25 94 8332 5976 .717 .268 .290
Phil Niekro 1964 1987 24 .276 318 274 716 83 5404 5044 2337 2012 1809 3342 482 123 3.35 115 3.62 106 22677 16921 .746 .270 .276
Pink Hawley 1892 1901 10 .302 167 179 344 43 3012 3334 1927 1326 974 868 61 210 3.96 107 4.06 104 13213 11100 .840 .295 .302
Preacher Roe 1938 1954 17 .274 127 84 261 42 1914 1907 799 730 504 956 199 17 3.43 116 3.69 108 7904 6228 .788 .274 .274
Pretzels Getzien 1884 1892 9 .290 145 139 292 4 2539 2670 1555 976 602 1070 95 28 3.46 99 3.32 103 10939 9144 .836 .282 .290
Pud Galvin 1875 1892 18 .291 365 310 688 19 6003 6405 3352 1903 745 1807 121 61 2.85 107 2.96 103 25415 22681 .892 .277 .291
R.A. Dickey 2001 2016 16 .294 110 108 269 35 1883 1840 916 840 596 1341 238 80 4.01 103 4.38 94 7976 5721 .717 .280 .294
Ralph Terry 1956 1967 12 .272 107 99 257 37 1849 1748 844 744 446 1000 216 24 3.62 102 3.73 99 7598 5912 .778 .259 .272
Ramon Martinez 1988 2001 14 .290 135 88 297 1 1895 1691 880 772 795 1427 170 66 3.67 105 4.01 96 8075 5617 .696 .271 .290
Randy Johnson 1988 2009 22 .291 303 166 603 7 4135 3346 1703 1513 1497 4875 411 190 3.29 135 3.19 139 17067 10094 .591 .291 .291
Randy Jones 1973 1982 10 .278 100 123 285 11 1933 1915 875 735 503 735 129 18 3.42 101 3.56 97 8069 6684 .828 .267 .278
Randy Wolf 1999 2015 17 .294 133 125 379 3 2328 2310 1173 1097 831 1814 296 103 4.24 99 4.38 96 9977 6933 .695 .290 .294
Ray Benge 1925 1938 14 .290 101 129 248 65 1875 2177 1108 941 598 655 132 30 4.52 96 4.32 100 8278 6863 .829 .298 .290
Ray Burris 1973 1987 15 .279 108 134 302 65 2188 2310 1133 1015 764 1065 221 54 4.17 92 4.14 93 9441 7337 .777 .285 .279
Ray Caldwell 1910 1921 12 .279 134 120 259 65 2242 2089 972 802 738 1006 59 63 3.22 100 3.07 105 9091 7225 .795 .281 .279
Ray Culp 1963 1973 11 .271 122 101 268 21 1898 1677 863 755 752 1411 188 70 3.58 100 3.61 99 8066 5645 .700 .264 .271
Ray Herbert 1950 1966 17 .272 104 107 236 74 1881 2000 927 839 571 864 167 24 4.01 96 3.71 104 8010 6384 .797 .287 .272
Ray Kremer 1924 1933 10 .289 143 85 247 37 1954 2108 950 816 483 516 123 29 3.76 113 4.18 102 8330 7179 .862 .277 .289
Ray Sadecki 1960 1977 18 .273 135 131 328 75 2500 2456 1206 1051 922 1614 240 41 3.78 98 3.64 102 10694 7877 .737 .281 .273
Red Ames 1903 1919 17 .275 183 167 371 118 3198 2896 1313 934 1034 1702 41 64 2.63 108 2.54 112 13080 10239 .783 .279 .275
Red Donahue 1893 1906 14 .296 164 175 340 23 2966 3377 1638 1191 689 787 61 113 3.61 95 3.38 101 12629 10979 .869 .302 .296
Red Ehret 1888 1898 11 .299 139 167 309 48 2754 3172 1881 1229 841 848 63 139 4.02 104 3.85 109 12232 10341 .845 .301 .299
Red Faber 1914 1933 20 .284 254 213 483 134 4086 4106 1813 1430 1213 1471 111 103 3.15 119 3.43 109 17104 14206 .831 .281 .284
Red Lucas 1923 1938 16 .290 157 135 302 71 2542 2736 1203 1051 455 602 136 22 3.72 107 3.86 103 10651 9436 .886 .276 .290
Red Ruffing 1924 1947 24 .284 273 225 538 69 4344 4284 2115 1833 1541 1987 254 58 3.80 109 3.93 105 18546 14706 .793 .274 .284
Reggie Cleveland 1969 1981 13 .275 105 106 203 111 1809 1843 919 807 543 930 152 44 4.01 96 3.62 106 7731 6062 .784 .279 .275
Rich Gossage 1972 1994 23 .280 124 107 37 681 1809 1497 670 605 732 1502 119 47 3.01 126 3.18 119 7507 5107 .680 .270 .280
Richard Dotson 1979 1990 12 .280 111 113 295 7 1857 1884 964 872 740 973 194 40 4.23 98 4.33 96 8034 6087 .758 .278 .280
Rick Honeycutt 1977 1997 21 .284 109 143 268 118 2160 2183 1034 893 657 1038 185 50 3.72 104 3.90 99 9141 7211 .789 .277 .284
Rick Mahler 1979 1991 13 .280 96 111 271 32 1951 2069 972 866 606 952 165 35 3.99 96 3.87 99 8306 6548 .788 .291 .280
Rick Reuschel 1972 1991 20 .279 214 191 529 16 3548 3588 1494 1330 935 2015 221 88 3.37 114 3.22 119 14888 11629 .781 .290 .279
Rick Rhoden 1974 1989 16 .279 151 125 380 14 2593 2606 1143 1036 801 1419 198 39 3.59 104 3.59 104 10900 8443 .775 .285 .279
Rick Sutcliffe 1976 1994 19 .281 171 139 392 30 2697 2662 1324 1223 1081 1679 236 46 4.08 97 3.93 101 11548 8506 .737 .285 .281
Rick Wise 1964 1982 19 .275 188 181 455 15 3127 3227 1455 1281 804 1647 261 44 3.69 101 3.41 109 13157 10401 .791 .285 .275
Rip Sewell 1932 1949 18 .279 143 97 243 89 2119 2101 983 819 748 636 116 23 3.48 108 3.79 99 9100 7577 .833 .262 .279
Robin Roberts 1948 1966 19 .272 286 245 609 49 4688 4582 1962 1774 902 2357 505 54 3.41 113 3.50 110 19174 15356 .801 .265 .272
Roger Clemens 1984 2007 24 .289 354 184 707 0 4916 4185 1885 1707 1580 4672 363 159 3.12 143 3.09 144 20240 13466 .665 .284 .289
Ron Darling 1983 1995 13 .284 136 116 364 5 2360 2244 1139 1016 906 1590 239 59 3.87 95 4.03 91 10032 7238 .721 .277 .284
Ron Guidry 1975 1988 14 .280 170 91 323 23 2392 2198 953 874 633 1778 226 13 3.29 119 3.27 120 9794 7144 .729 .276 .280
Ron Kline 1952 1970 19 .271 114 144 203 338 2078 2113 991 866 731 989 217 33 3.75 102 3.99 96 8868 6898 .778 .275 .271
Ron Reed 1966 1984 19 .276 146 140 236 300 2477 2374 1084 953 633 1481 182 50 3.46 108 3.16 118 10304 7958 .772 .275 .276
Ross Grimsley 1971 1982 12 .277 124 99 295 17 2039 2105 947 863 559 750 202 15 3.81 92 3.99 88 8544 7018 .821 .271 .277
Roy Halladay 1998 2013 16 .294 203 105 390 6 2749 2646 1135 1034 592 2117 236 81 3.38 131 3.39 131 11287 8261 .732 .292 .294
Roy Oswalt 2001 2013 13 .294 163 102 341 7 2245 2199 897 838 520 1852 197 80 3.36 127 3.37 127 9301 6652 .715 .301 .294
Rube Benton 1910 1925 16 .282 150 144 311 82 2517 2472 1115 863 712 950 52 95 3.09 102 3.11 101 10539 8730 .828 .277 .282
Rube Marquard 1908 1925 18 .280 201 177 408 82 3306 3233 1443 1130 858 1593 107 39 3.08 103 2.90 109 13641 11044 .810 .283 .280
Rube Waddell 1897 1910 14 .283 193 143 340 54 2961 2460 1063 711 803 2316 37 115 2.16 135 2.03 144 11717 8446 .721 .287 .283
Rube Walberg 1923 1937 15 .290 155 141 306 146 2644 2795 1423 1223 1031 1085 163 27 4.16 107 4.25 105 11531 9225 .800 .285 .290
Rudy May 1965 1983 19 .275 152 156 360 73 2622 2314 1150 1007 958 1760 199 42 3.46 102 3.38 104 10902 7943 .729 .266 .275
Ryan Dempster 1998 2013 16 .294 132 133 351 186 2387 2347 1250 1154 1071 2075 267 91 4.35 98 4.25 100 10412 6908 .663 .301 .294
Sad Sam Jones 1914 1935 22 .285 229 217 487 116 3883 4084 2008 1656 1396 1223 151 69 3.84 104 3.93 102 16662 13823 .830 .285 .285
Sadie McMahon 1889 1897 9 .302 173 127 305 16 2634 2726 1592 1026 945 967 52 94 3.51 118 3.69 112 11534 9476 .822 .282 .302
Sam Gray 1924 1933 10 .289 111 115 231 84 1951 2196 1107 907 639 730 111 29 4.18 107 4.09 109 8539 7030 .823 .297 .289
Sam Leever 1898 1910 13 .281 194 100 299 75 2660 2449 1023 731 587 847 29 88 2.47 123 2.84 107 10662 9111 .855 .266 .281
Sam McDowell 1961 1975 15 .272 141 134 346 39 2492 1948 999 879 1312 2453 164 59 3.17 112 3.06 116 10587 6599 .623 .270 .272
Sandy Koufax 1955 1966 12 .272 165 87 314 44 2324 1754 806 713 817 2396 204 18 2.76 131 2.69 134 9497 6062 .638 .256 .272
Schoolboy Rowe 1933 1949 17 .279 158 101 278 74 2219 2332 1075 955 558 913 131 27 3.87 110 3.56 120 9398 7769 .827 .283 .279
Scott Erickson 1990 2006 17 .292 142 136 364 10 2360 2586 1306 1203 865 1252 228 103 4.59 98 4.46 101 10284 7836 .762 .301 .292
Scott McGregor 1976 1988 13 .280 138 108 309 24 2140 2245 1031 949 518 904 235 26 3.99 98 4.06 96 8982 7299 .813 .275 .280
Scott Sanderson 1978 1996 19 .283 163 143 407 18 2561 2590 1209 1093 625 1611 297 43 3.84 102 3.83 102 10709 8133 .759 .282 .283
Scott Stratton 1888 1895 8 .297 97 114 214 16 1892 2177 1293 813 434 570 44 69 3.87 98 3.39 112 8291 7174 .865 .297 .297
Shane Rawley 1978 1989 12 .280 111 118 230 140 1871 1934 917 836 734 991 153 28 4.02 98 3.97 99 8062 6156 .764 .289 .280
Shane Reynolds 1992 2004 13 .293 114 96 278 5 1791 1935 895 814 419 1403 191 41 4.09 103 3.69 114 7610 5556 .730 .314 .293
Sherry Smith 1911 1927 17 .283 114 118 226 109 2052 2234 964 757 440 428 57 42 3.32 108 3.40 105 8647 7680 .888 .283 .283
Si Johnson 1928 1947 20 .282 101 165 272 115 2281 2510 1226 1036 687 840 121 36 4.09 92 3.77 100 9903 8219 .830 .291 .282
Sid Fernandez 1983 1997 15 .286 114 96 300 2 1866 1421 749 696 715 1743 191 41 3.36 111 3.52 106 7668 4978 .649 .247 .286
Sid Hudson 1940 1954 15 .272 104 152 279 67 2181 2384 1212 1036 835 734 136 48 4.28 95 3.91 104 9593 7840 .817 .287 .272
Sidney Ponson 1998 2009 12 .295 91 113 278 7 1760 2004 1051 983 609 1031 223 45 5.03 89 4.67 96 7676 5768 .751 .309 .295
Silver King 1886 1897 12 .299 203 152 370 25 3180 3098 1803 1124 967 1222 69 146 3.18 121 3.42 113 13671 11267 .824 .269 .299
Slim Harriss 1920 1928 9 .290 95 135 229 78 1750 1963 1006 827 630 644 73 41 4.25 100 3.94 108 7661 6273 .819 .301 .290
Slim Sallee 1908 1921 14 .277 174 143 305 123 2821 2729 1092 804 573 836 68 43 2.56 114 2.87 102 11476 9956 .868 .267 .277
Sonny Siebert 1964 1975 12 .272 140 114 307 42 2152 1919 907 767 692 1512 197 54 3.21 110 3.34 106 8951 6496 .726 .265 .272
Stan Bahnsen 1966 1982 17 .275 146 149 327 90 2529 2440 1127 1013 924 1359 223 34 3.60 97 3.76 93 10701 8161 .763 .272 .275
Stan Coveleski 1912 1928 17 .283 215 142 385 52 3082 3055 1227 990 802 981 66 30 2.89 127 3.19 115 12729 10850 .852 .275 .283
Stan Williams 1958 1972 15 .271 109 94 208 140 1764 1527 785 682 748 1305 160 71 3.48 108 3.62 104 7521 5237 .696 .261 .271
Steve Barber 1960 1974 15 .272 121 106 272 90 1999 1818 870 747 950 1309 125 42 3.36 105 3.52 100 8591 6165 .718 .275 .272
Steve Carlton 1965 1988 24 .276 329 244 709 13 5217 4672 2130 1864 1833 4136 414 53 3.22 115 3.15 118 21683 15247 .703 .279 .276
Steve Gromek 1941 1957 17 .271 123 108 225 110 2064 1940 893 782 630 904 186 68 3.41 108 3.79 97 8676 6888 .794 .255 .271
Steve Renko 1969 1983 15 .277 134 146 365 36 2494 2438 1233 1107 1010 1455 248 22 3.99 98 3.98 98 10704 7969 .744 .275 .277
Steve Rogers 1973 1985 13 .279 158 152 393 3 2837 2619 1122 1001 876 1621 151 43 3.17 116 3.20 115 11702 9011 .770 .274 .279
Steve Stone 1971 1981 11 .277 107 93 269 15 1788 1707 880 788 716 1065 184 40 3.97 98 4.04 96 7640 5635 .738 .270 .277
Steve Trachsel 1993 2008 16 .295 143 159 417 1 2501 2587 1327 1219 943 1591 348 52 4.39 99 4.83 90 10799 7865 .728 .285 .295
Storm Davis 1982 1994 13 .283 113 96 239 85 1780 1792 866 796 687 1048 136 20 4.02 99 3.80 105 7623 5732 .752 .289 .283
Stump Weidman 1880 1888 9 .290 101 156 269 10 2318 2594 1536 929 459 910 62 12 3.61 89 3.19 101 10144 8701 .858 .291 .290
Syl Johnson 1922 1940 19 .289 112 117 209 206 2165 2290 1099 977 488 920 172 48 4.06 105 4.00 107 9124 7496 .822 .283 .289
Ted Breitenstein 1891 1901 11 .301 160 170 342 34 2973 3101 1848 1331 1207 893 79 87 4.03 110 4.26 104 13010 10744 .826 .281 .301
Ted Lilly 1999 2013 15 .294 130 113 331 5 1982 1827 974 913 661 1681 293 63 4.14 106 4.41 100 8390 5692 .678 .270 .294
Ted Lyons 1923 1946 24 .284 260 230 484 91 4161 4489 2056 1696 1121 1073 222 31 3.67 118 4.01 108 17797 15350 .863 .278 .284
Terry Mulholland 1986 2006 21 .290 124 142 332 128 2575 2833 1396 1262 681 1325 293 70 4.41 93 4.32 95 11060 8691 .786 .292 .290
Thornton Lee 1933 1948 16 .279 117 124 272 50 2331 2327 1105 921 838 937 122 43 3.56 119 3.81 111 9999 8059 .806 .274 .279
Tim Belcher 1987 2000 14 .289 146 140 373 13 2442 2423 1253 1130 860 1519 264 58 4.16 101 4.27 98 10422 7721 .741 .280 .289
Tim Hudson 1999 2015 17 .294 222 133 479 0 3126 2957 1319 1213 917 2080 248 124 3.49 120 3.78 111 13005 9636 .741 .281 .294
Tim Keefe 1880 1893 14 .291 342 225 594 7 5049 4438 2470 1474 1233 2564 75 98 2.63 126 2.92 113 20941 16971 .810 .257 .291
Tim Wakefield 1992 2011 20 .293 200 180 463 78 3226 3152 1791 1582 1205 2156 418 186 4.41 105 4.72 98 13939 9974 .716 .274 .293
Toad Ramsey 1885 1890 6 .291 113 124 241 7 2100 1941 1373 769 671 1515 40 51 3.29 117 2.85 135 9018 6741 .748 .282 .291
Todd Stottlemyre 1988 2002 15 .290 138 121 339 12 2191 2200 1130 1042 816 1587 246 83 4.28 100 4.24 101 9441 6709 .711 .291 .290
Togie Pittinger 1900 1907 8 .284 115 113 227 30 2040 2017 985 702 734 832 39 96 3.10 98 3.27 93 8579 6878 .802 .288 .284
Tom Browning 1984 1995 12 .284 123 90 300 1 1921 1931 913 841 511 1000 236 32 3.94 97 4.21 91 8066 6287 .779 .270 .284
Tom Candiotti 1983 1999 17 .287 151 164 410 11 2725 2662 1299 1130 883 1735 250 85 3.73 108 3.91 103 11568 8615 .745 .280 .287
Tom Glavine 1987 2008 22 .291 305 203 682 0 4413 4298 1900 1734 1500 2607 356 66 3.54 118 3.95 106 18604 14075 .757 .280 .291
Tom Gordon 1988 2009 22 .291 138 126 203 347 2108 1889 1016 927 977 1928 176 38 3.96 113 3.71 121 9058 5939 .656 .288 .291
Tom Hughes 1900 1913 14 .281 132 174 313 73 2644 2610 1292 909 853 1368 52 102 3.09 93 2.85 101 11009 8634 .784 .296 .281
Tom Seaver 1967 1986 20 .276 311 205 647 6 4783 3971 1674 1521 1390 3640 380 76 2.86 127 3.04 119 19369 13883 .717 .259 .276
Tom Zachary 1918 1936 19 .288 186 191 408 83 3126 3580 1551 1295 914 720 118 41 3.73 107 3.96 101 13467 11674 .867 .297 .288
Tommy Bond 1874 1884 11 .295 234 163 408 13 3628 3765 1931 862 193 972 50 2 2.14 115 2.34 105 15082 13865 .919 .268 .295
Tommy Bridges 1930 1946 17 .282 194 138 362 47 2826 2675 1321 1122 1192 1674 181 35 3.57 126 3.88 116 12165 9083 .747 .275 .282
Tommy John 1963 1989 27 .276 288 231 700 22 4710 4783 2017 1749 1259 2245 302 98 3.34 111 3.38 110 19692 15788 .802 .284 .276
Tommy Thomas 1926 1937 12 .290 117 128 267 86 2176 2341 1185 995 712 736 144 24 4.11 104 4.27 100 9456 7840 .829 .280 .290
Tony Cloninger 1961 1972 12 .271 113 97 247 40 1767 1643 898 799 798 1120 180 33 4.07 88 4.00 90 7624 5493 .720 .266 .271
Tony Mullane 1881 1894 14 .294 284 220 504 52 4531 4195 2523 1537 1408 1803 97 185 3.05 117 3.54 101 19407 15914 .820 .258 .294
Tully Sparks 1897 1910 14 .283 121 137 270 40 2343 2250 1067 734 630 780 33 87 2.82 103 2.93 99 9583 8053 .840 .275 .283
Urban Shocker 1916 1928 13 .284 187 117 317 72 2681 2709 1131 945 657 983 130 37 3.17 124 3.54 111 11137 9330 .838 .276 .284
Van Mungo 1931 1945 15 .281 120 115 259 61 2113 1957 955 815 868 1242 89 33 3.47 110 3.60 106 9030 6798 .753 .275 .281
Vern Kennedy 1934 1945 12 .281 104 132 263 56 2025 2173 1202 1052 1049 691 130 24 4.67 95 4.60 96 9055 7161 .791 .285 .281
Vern Law 1950 1967 18 .272 162 147 364 78 2672 2833 1274 1118 597 1092 268 40 3.77 101 3.70 103 11231 9234 .822 .278 .272
Vic Raschi 1946 1955 10 .272 132 66 255 5 1819 1666 828 752 727 944 138 26 3.72 105 3.70 106 7675 5840 .761 .262 .272
Vic Willis 1898 1910 13 .281 249 205 471 41 3996 3621 1620 1167 1212 1651 66 156 2.63 117 2.96 104 16263 13178 .810 .270 .281
Vida Blue 1969 1986 18 .277 209 161 473 11 3343 2939 1357 1213 1185 2175 263 23 3.27 108 3.43 103 13837 10191 .737 .263 .277
Virgil Trucks 1941 1958 18 .271 177 135 328 114 2682 2416 1124 1009 1088 1534 188 47 3.39 117 3.50 113 11378 8521 .749 .261 .271
Waite Hoyt 1918 1938 21 .288 237 182 425 172 3762 4037 1780 1500 1003 1206 154 49 3.59 112 3.76 107 16010 13598 .849 .286 .288
Walt Terrell 1982 1992 11 .281 111 124 294 10 1986 2090 1031 931 748 929 187 37 4.22 93 4.26 92 8569 6668 .778 .285 .281
Walter Johnson 1907 1927 21 .280 417 279 666 127 5914 4913 1902 1424 1363 3509 97 205 2.17 147 2.42 132 23405 18231 .779 .264 .280
Warren Spahn 1942 1965 24 .272 363 245 665 67 5243 4830 2016 1798 1434 2583 434 42 3.09 119 3.44 107 21547 17054 .791 .258 .272
Wes Ferrell 1927 1941 15 .287 193 128 323 43 2623 2845 1382 1177 1040 985 132 23 4.04 116 4.23 111 11568 9388 .812 .289 .287
Whit Wyatt 1929 1945 17 .283 106 95 210 101 1761 1684 860 741 642 872 98 33 3.79 106 3.67 109 7521 5876 .781 .270 .283
Whitey Ford 1950 1967 18 .272 236 106 438 35 3170 2766 1107 967 1086 1956 228 28 2.75 133 3.26 112 13036 9738 .747 .261 .272
Wilbur Cooper 1912 1926 15 .283 216 178 406 83 3480 3415 1406 1119 853 1252 103 100 2.89 116 3.17 106 14377 12069 .839 .274 .283
Wilbur Wood 1961 1978 18 .273 164 156 297 198 2684 2582 1130 965 724 1411 209 63 3.24 114 3.37 110 11154 8747 .784 .271 .273
Will White 1877 1886 10 .294 229 166 401 2 3542 3440 1844 896 496 1041 65 68 2.28 121 2.98 93 14951 13281 .888 .254 .294
Willie Sudhoff 1897 1906 10 .290 102 135 239 38 2075 2173 1141 830 603 516 62 125 3.60 91 3.70 89 8810 7504 .852 .281 .290
Willis Hudlin 1926 1944 19 .284 158 156 328 105 2613 3011 1493 1281 846 677 118 44 4.41 102 4.16 108 11522 9837 .854 .294 .284
Wilson Alvarez 1989 2005 17 .290 102 92 263 18 1747 1624 857 769 805 1330 190 50 3.96 112 4.41 101 7518 5143 .684 .279 .290
Win Mercer 1894 1902 9 .304 132 164 300 34 2484 3081 1753 1098 755 532 64 144 3.98 107 4.18 102 11106 9611 .865 .314 .304
Woodie Fryman 1966 1983 18 .275 141 155 322 160 2411 2367 1136 1010 890 1587 187 68 3.77 96 3.44 105 10291 7559 .735 .288 .275
Woody Williams 1993 2007 15 .295 132 116 330 34 2216 2217 1096 1031 711 1480 309 72 4.19 103 4.63 93 9475 6903 .729 .276 .295
Zack Greinke 2004 2016 13 .295 155 100 349 8 2253 2133 921 856 549 2021 218 59 3.42 120 3.37 122 9279 6432 .693 .298 .295
Zane Smith 1984 1996 13 .285 100 115 291 16 1919 1980 933 798 583 1011 122 31 3.74 105 3.60 109 8077 6330 .784 .294 .285

Offensive value based on adjusted base/out percentage (ABOP)

rank PLAYER NAME OPS+ Abop Abop r/g ML ave pct. W L
1 Babe Ruth 206 1.305 8.81 4.37 .803 171 42
2 Ted Williams 190 1.253 8.46 4.20 .802 157 39
3 Lou Gehrig 179 1.170 7.90 4.58 .748 152 51
4 Mickey Mantle 172 1.024 6.91 4.11 .739 161 57
5 Shoeless Joe Jackson 170 .974 6.58 3.95 .735 93 34
6 Jimmie Foxx 163 1.093 7.38 4.43 .735 155 56
7 Dan Brouthers 170 1.031 6.96 4.19 .734 121 44
8 Ty Cobb 168 1.010 6.82 4.13 .731 210 77
9 Barry Bonds 182 1.131 7.64 4.65 .729 198 73
10 Rogers Hornsby 175 1.072 7.24 4.41 .729 149 55
11 Hank Greenberg 158 1.053 7.10 4.34 .728 100 37
12 Ross Barnes 167 .870 5.88 3.62 .725 42 16
13 Stan Musial 159 1.004 6.78 4.18 .724 207 79
14 John McGraw 135 1.045 7.05 4.35 .724 71 27
15 Billy Hamilton 141 1.067 7.20 4.54 .716 110 44
16 Joe DiMaggio 155 .993 6.70 4.26 .712 126 51
17 Tris Speaker 157 .967 6.52 4.16 .711 188 77
18 Johnny Mize 158 .977 6.59 4.26 .705 119 50
19 Willie Mays 156 .932 6.29 4.09 .703 210 89
20 Charlie Keller 152 .949 6.41 4.18 .701 73 31
21 Levi Meyerle 163 .821 5.54 3.62 .701 24 10
22 Frank Robinson 154 .912 6.16 4.04 .699 195 84
23 Mel Ott 155 .987 6.66 4.39 .697 175 76
24 Mark McGwire 163 .982 6.63 4.39 .695 123 54
25 Dick Allen 156 .887 5.99 3.97 .694 123 54
26 Hank Aaron 155 .905 6.11 4.06 .693 235 104
27 Honus Wagner 151 .895 6.04 4.02 .693 186 83
28 Ralph Kiner 149 .950 6.41 4.27 .693 100 44
29 Ed Delahanty 152 .995 6.72 4.48 .692 127 57
30 Pete Browning 163 .932 6.29 4.20 .691 81 36
31 Tip O’Neill 144 .890 6.01 4.05 .687 73 33
32 Mike Donlin 144 .879 5.94 4.01 .687 68 31
33 Roger Connor 153 .927 6.26 4.23 .687 136 62
34 Elmer Flick 149 .865 5.84 3.97 .684 100 46
35 Harry Heilmann 148 .942 6.36 4.36 .680 138 65
36 Mike Schmidt 147 .889 6.00 4.12 .679 163 77
37 Gavvy Cravath 151 .852 5.75 3.95 .679 74 35
38 Lefty O’Doul 143 .994 6.71 4.61 .679 55 26
39 Sam Thompson 147 .927 6.26 4.32 .677 101 48
40 Willie McCovey 147 .866 5.85 4.04 .677 157 75
41 Cap Anson 142 .866 5.85 4.04 .677 173 83
42 Harry Stovey 144 .855 5.77 4.00 .675 109 53
43 Willie Stargell 147 .857 5.79 4.02 .674 148 72
44 Manny Ramirez 154 1.007 6.80 4.75 .672 150 73
45 Duke Snider 140 .895 6.04 4.23 .671 133 65
46 Eddie Mathews 143 .869 5.87 4.11 .671 161 79
47 Miguel Cabrera 155 .951 6.42 4.50 .670 142 70
48 Frank Thomas 156 .997 6.73 4.72 .670 151 75
49 King Kelly 139 .830 5.60 3.94 .669 101 50
50 George Gore 136 .820 5.53 3.90 .668 93 46
51 Ken Williams 138 .907 6.12 4.32 .667 88 44
52 Harmon Killebrew 143 .854 5.77 4.07 .667 158 79
53 Nap Lajoie 150 .853 5.76 4.07 .667 163 81
54 Joe Kelley 134 .902 6.09 4.31 .666 122 61
55 Albert Pujols 157 .947 6.40 4.53 .666 167 84
56 Chuck Klein 137 .926 6.25 4.43 .666 112 56
57 Lip Pike 158 .773 5.22 3.70 .665 34 17
58 Hack Wilson 144 .957 6.46 4.59 .664 84 43
59 Jake Stenzel 134 .973 6.57 4.67 .664 50 25
60 Babe Herman 141 .921 6.22 4.42 .664 96 49
61 Eddie Collins 142 .875 5.91 4.20 .664 181 91
62 Charley Jones 150 .760 5.13 3.65 .664 65 33
63 Bob Johnson 139 .894 6.03 4.29 .664 125 63
64 Todd Helton 133 .973 6.56 4.67 .664 142 72
65 Larry Walker 141 .974 6.58 4.68 .664 124 63
66 Frank Chance 135 .836 5.65 4.02 .664 77 39
67 Norm Cash 139 .836 5.65 4.02 .664 126 64
68 Joe Harris 132 .885 5.98 4.26 .663 54 27
69 Earl Averill 133 .941 6.35 4.53 .663 109 56
70 Jesse Burkett 140 .922 6.22 4.44 .663 139 71
71 Jackie Robinson 132 .890 6.01 4.29 .662 89 45
72 Joe Morgan 132 .832 5.62 4.02 .661 176 90
73 Jim Thome 147 .967 6.53 4.68 .661 155 80
74 Dolph Camilli 135 .883 5.96 4.29 .659 97 50
75 Hal Trosky 130 .877 5.92 4.27 .658 90 47
76 Lance Berkman 144 .951 6.42 4.65 .656 117 62
77 Arky Vaughan 136 .876 5.92 4.29 .655 114 60
78 Al Simmons 133 .910 6.14 4.46 .655 146 77
79 Edgar Martinez 147 .951 6.42 4.66 .655 128 67
80 Billy Williams 133 .815 5.50 4.01 .653 169 89
81 Roy Cullenbine 132 .846 5.71 4.16 .653 71 38
82 Denny Lyons 140 .909 6.14 4.48 .652 72 39
83 Jack Fournier 142 .860 5.80 4.24 .652 92 49
84 Reggie Smith 137 .815 5.50 4.02 .652 129 69
85 Albert Belle 144 .894 6.03 4.41 .652 107 57
86 Tommy Henrich 132 .857 5.79 4.24 .651 83 45
87 Sherry Magee 137 .785 5.30 3.88 .651 134 72
88 Ken Phelps 132 .838 5.66 4.15 .650 35 19
89 Hugh Duffy 123 .882 5.95 4.37 .650 117 63
90 Larry Doby 136 .861 5.81 4.27 .649 96 52
91 Al Kaline 134 .821 5.54 4.08 .649 182 99
92 Jeff Bagwell 149 .953 6.43 4.74 .648 141 77
93 Sam Crawford 144 .798 5.38 3.97 .648 165 90
94 Jim Gentile 136 .825 5.57 4.11 .647 54 30
95 Henry Larkin 142 .836 5.65 4.17 .647 79 43
96 Jeff Heath 139 .852 5.75 4.25 .647 87 47
97 Bob Caruthers 134 .836 5.65 4.17 .647 42 23
98 Paul Waner 134 .886 5.98 4.42 .647 158 86
99 Ed Swartwood 141 .797 5.38 3.98 .646 48 26
100 Carl Yastrzemski 130 .808 5.45 4.04 .646 218 120
101 Mickey Cochrane 129 .919 6.21 4.60 .645 89 49
102 Pete Reiser 128 .831 5.61 4.16 .645 46 25
103 Wade Boggs 131 .860 5.81 4.31 .645 157 86
104 Fred Clarke 133 .837 5.65 4.20 .644 146 81
105 Jack Clark 137 .824 5.56 4.14 .644 127 71
106 Mike Tiernan 138 .911 6.15 4.58 .643 98 54
107 Charlie Gehringer 124 .895 6.04 4.51 .642 149 83
108 Will Clark 137 .869 5.87 4.38 .642 125 70
109 George Brett 135 .821 5.54 4.14 .642 182 102
110 Frank Howard 142 .795 5.37 4.02 .641 118 66
111 David Ortiz 141 .911 6.15 4.61 .640 154 87
112 Reggie Jackson 139 .804 5.42 4.07 .640 181 102
113 Bill Terry 136 .904 6.10 4.58 .639 105 59
114 Alex Rodriguez 140 .917 6.19 4.65 .639 187 106
115 Jim O’Rourke 134 .757 5.11 3.84 .639 139 79
116 Roy Thomas 124 .785 5.30 3.98 .639 93 52
117 Orlando Cepeda 133 .792 5.35 4.02 .639 141 80
118 Chipper Jones 141 .931 6.29 4.73 .639 157 89
119 Jason Giambi 139 .919 6.21 4.67 .638 131 74
120 Al Rosen 137 .845 5.70 4.29 .638 67 38
121 Pedro Guerrero 137 .816 5.51 4.15 .638 95 54
122 Greg Luzinski 130 .802 5.41 4.08 .637 117 67
123 Hardy Richardson 131 .766 5.17 3.90 .637 93 53
124 Gene Tenace 136 .801 5.41 4.08 .637 83 47
125 Joe Cunningham 120 .814 5.49 4.15 .637 59 34
126 Rocky Colavito 132 .800 5.40 4.08 .636 119 68
127 Riggs Stephenson 129 .899 6.07 4.59 .636 73 42
128 Rico Carty 132 .781 5.27 3.99 .636 99 57
129 Tony Oliva 131 .778 5.25 3.97 .636 110 63
130 Bernie Carbo 126 .795 5.37 4.07 .635 50 29
131 Bill Dickey 127 .857 5.79 4.39 .635 105 60
132 Kevin Mitchell 142 .838 5.66 4.30 .634 73 42
133 Bobby Bonds 129 .785 5.30 4.03 .634 129 75
134 John Kruk 134 .830 5.60 4.26 .634 68 39
135 Matt Holliday 134 .872 5.89 4.48 .633 114 66
136 Rod Carew 131 .787 5.31 4.05 .632 161 93
137 Dwight Evans 127 .801 5.40 4.12 .632 163 95
138 Boog Powell 134 .779 5.26 4.01 .632 121 71
139 Prince Fielder 134 .866 5.85 4.46 .632 103 60
140 Home Run Baker 135 .782 5.28 4.03 .632 102 59
141 Ron Santo 125 .776 5.24 4.00 .632 147 86
142 Buck Ewing 129 .820 5.53 4.23 .631 88 51
143 Danny Tartabull 133 .831 5.61 4.29 .631 90 52
144 Ken Singleton 132 .790 5.33 4.08 .631 129 76
145 Bob Allison 127 .782 5.28 4.04 .631 93 54
146 Mike Smith 126 .873 5.89 4.51 .631 77 45
147 Jim Wynn 129 .768 5.18 3.97 .630 124 73
148 Fred Lynn 129 .801 5.40 4.14 .630 123 72
149 Chick Hafey 133 .890 6.00 4.60 .630 76 45
150 Enos Slaughter 124 .816 5.51 4.22 .630 135 79
151 Topsy Hartsel 128 .772 5.21 4.00 .629 84 50
152 Goose Goslin 128 .884 5.97 4.58 .629 144 85
153 Roger Maris 127 .780 5.26 4.04 .629 91 54
154 Kent Hrbek 128 .808 5.45 4.19 .629 110 65
155 Joe Medwick 134 .827 5.58 4.29 .629 126 74
156 Roberto Clemente 130 .781 5.27 4.06 .628 160 95
157 Roger Bresnahan 126 .779 5.26 4.05 .628 78 46
158 Gary Sheffield 140 .896 6.05 4.66 .628 162 96
159 Keith Hernandez 128 .796 5.37 4.14 .627 128 76
160 Oyster Burns 135 .835 5.64 4.35 .627 76 45
161 Harlond Clift 116 .825 5.57 4.30 .627 100 60
162 Ross Youngs 130 .831 5.61 4.33 .626 77 46
163 Carlos Delgado 138 .920 6.21 4.80 .626 128 76
164 Sid Gordon 129 .801 5.41 4.18 .626 89 53
165 Darryl Strawberry 138 .828 5.59 4.32 .626 98 59
166 John Titus 127 .747 5.04 3.90 .626 86 51
167 Craig Biggio 112 .766 5.17 4.00 .626 192 115
168 Gil Hodges 120 .801 5.41 4.19 .625 125 75
169 Jim Rice 128 .791 5.34 4.14 .624 144 87
170 Willie Keeler 127 .811 5.48 4.25 .624 139 84
171 Minnie Minoso 130 .809 5.46 4.24 .624 117 70
172 Carlos Lee 113 .763 5.15 4.00 .624 140 85
173 George Sisler 125 .831 5.61 4.36 .623 134 81
174 Jimmy Ryan 124 .841 5.68 4.42 .623 132 80
175 Bill Nicholson 132 .810 5.47 4.26 .622 96 58
176 Joe Cronin 119 .841 5.67 4.42 .622 129 78
177 Augie Galan 122 .814 5.49 4.28 .622 101 61
178 Paul Hines 132 .718 4.85 3.78 .622 114 69
179 Leon Durham 125 .788 5.32 4.15 .621 63 38
180 Hank Sauer 123 .795 5.37 4.19 .621 84 51
181 Jim Ray Hart 127 .747 5.05 3.94 .621 67 41
182 John Reilly 129 .745 5.03 3.93 .621 77 47
183 Zack Wheat 129 .796 5.37 4.20 .620 148 91
184 Joe Torre 129 .761 5.14 4.02 .620 136 83
185 Wally Judnich 120 .782 5.28 4.13 .620 48 30
186 Bob Watson 129 .762 5.15 4.03 .620 106 65
187 Ken Griffey 136 .883 5.96 4.67 .620 170 104
188 Kiki Cuyler 125 .866 5.85 4.58 .620 117 72
189 Cupid Childs 119 .858 5.79 4.54 .620 92 56
190 Wally Berger 138 .857 5.78 4.54 .619 85 52
191 Larry Doyle 126 .741 5.00 3.93 .618 111 69
192 Rick Monday 125 .760 5.13 4.03 .618 109 67
193 Vladimir Guerrero 140 .896 6.04 4.75 .618 137 85
194 John Mayberry 123 .762 5.14 4.04 .618 97 60
195 Ted Kluszewski 123 .805 5.43 4.27 .618 99 61
196 Tony Gwynn 132 .817 5.52 4.34 .618 152 94
197 Bobby Murcer 124 .757 5.11 4.02 .618 118 73
198 Oscar Gamble 127 .770 5.20 4.09 .618 79 49
199 Cliff Johnson 125 .771 5.21 4.10 .617 70 43
200 Johnny Bench 126 .758 5.12 4.03 .617 136 84
201 Eric Davis 125 .820 5.53 4.36 .617 94 58
202 Richie Zisk 127 .765 5.16 4.07 .617 88 55
203 David Wright 133 .842 5.68 4.48 .617 103 64
204 Socks Seybold 131 .748 5.05 3.98 .617 62 38
205 Roy Campanella 123 .806 5.44 4.29 .616 74 46
206 George Van Haltren 122 .843 5.69 4.49 .616 127 79
207 Bob Nieman 132 .796 5.37 4.24 .616 60 37
208 Gene Woodling 123 .790 5.33 4.21 .616 97 60
209 Ginger Beaumont 123 .741 5.00 3.95 .616 93 58
210 Earle Combs 125 .860 5.81 4.59 .615 92 57
211 Brian Giles 136 .901 6.08 4.81 .615 112 70
212 Norm Siebern 117 .760 5.13 4.06 .615 78 49
213 Chick Stahl 122 .779 5.26 4.16 .615 83 52
214 Jimmy Barrett 116 .745 5.03 3.98 .615 55 34
215 Rudy York 123 .801 5.40 4.28 .615 102 64
216 Mo Vaughn 132 .888 6.00 4.75 .614 94 59
217 Jose Canseco 132 .819 5.53 4.38 .614 126 79
218 Travis Hafner 134 .854 5.76 4.57 .614 70 44
219 Bob Elliott 124 .782 5.28 4.19 .614 121 76
220 George Harper 118 .814 5.49 4.36 .614 57 36
221 Hanley Ramirez 128 .832 5.62 4.46 .613 96 60
222 Bobby Abreu 128 .870 5.87 4.66 .613 145 92
223 Eddie Murray 129 .791 5.34 4.24 .613 195 123
224 Merv Rettenmund 123 .754 5.09 4.04 .613 46 29
225 Rickey Henderson 127 .845 5.70 4.53 .613 193 122
226 Dixie Walker 121 .804 5.43 4.31 .613 110 70
227 Vic Wertz 121 .792 5.35 4.25 .613 105 66
228 Bill White 116 .757 5.11 4.06 .613 102 65
229 Jimmy Sheckard 121 .758 5.12 4.07 .613 132 83
230 Kirk Gibson 123 .784 5.29 4.21 .612 101 64
231 Hank Thompson 118 .799 5.39 4.29 .612 52 33
232 Stan Spence 125 .768 5.19 4.13 .612 66 42
233 Mike Piazza 142 .889 6.00 4.78 .612 115 73
234 Kevin Youkilis 123 .846 5.71 4.55 .612 64 41
235 Deacon White 127 .703 4.74 3.78 .612 104 66
236 Jason Thompson 122 .770 5.19 4.14 .612 84 54
237 Don Mincher 127 .741 5.00 3.99 .611 73 46
238 Bob Horner 127 .775 5.23 4.17 .611 66 42
239 Paul Molitor 122 .789 5.33 4.25 .611 182 116
240 Tony Conigliaro 119 .734 4.95 3.95 .611 57 36
241 Yogi Berra 125 .782 5.28 4.21 .611 127 81
242 Mark Teixeira 126 .835 5.64 4.50 .611 120 76
243 Ernie Banks 122 .760 5.13 4.10 .610 164 105
244 Fred McGriff 134 .860 5.81 4.64 .610 149 95
245 Leon Wagner 120 .747 5.04 4.03 .610 76 48
246 Mack Jones 120 .739 4.99 3.99 .610 55 35
247 Roy Sievers 124 .779 5.26 4.21 .610 111 71
248 Stan Hack 119 .794 5.36 4.29 .609 119 76
249 Rafael Palmeiro 132 .859 5.80 4.64 .609 177 114
250 Mike Hargrove 121 .762 5.14 4.12 .609 96 62
251 Kirby Puckett 124 .784 5.29 4.24 .609 119 77
252 Pete Rose 118 .747 5.04 4.04 .609 233 150
253 Dave Winfield 130 .773 5.22 4.18 .609 190 122
254 Bug Holliday 126 .862 5.82 4.66 .609 57 37
255 Jim Bottomley 125 .849 5.73 4.59 .609 121 78
256 Don Mattingly 127 .782 5.28 4.23 .609 116 75
257 Charlie Maxwell 116 .780 5.27 4.22 .609 56 36
258 Andre Thornton 123 .767 5.17 4.15 .609 95 61
259 George Foster 126 .756 5.10 4.09 .609 122 78
260 Ray Blades 123 .854 5.77 4.63 .608 40 26
261 Cy Williams 125 .799 5.39 4.33 .608 114 73
262 Wally Moon 118 .769 5.19 4.17 .608 83 54
263 Jim Edmonds 132 .882 5.95 4.78 .608 116 75
264 Troy Tulowitzki 120 .819 5.53 4.44 .608 77 50
265 Barney McCosky 111 .773 5.21 4.19 .608 69 44
266 Bobby Veach 127 .774 5.23 4.20 .608 111 72
267 Dom DiMaggio 110 .770 5.20 4.18 .608 94 61
268 Rusty Staub 124 .743 5.01 4.03 .607 169 109
269 George Grantham 122 .846 5.71 4.59 .607 83 54
270 Bubbles Hargrave 118 .798 5.38 4.33 .607 41 27
271 Darrell Evans 119 .757 5.11 4.11 .607 159 103
272 John Briggs 121 .727 4.91 3.95 .607 73 47
273 Mike Griffin 123 .843 5.69 4.58 .607 95 61
274 Gary Matthews 118 .760 5.13 4.13 .607 123 80
275 Ben Chapman 114 .800 5.40 4.35 .607 108 70
276 Tony Perez 122 .743 5.02 4.04 .607 168 109
277 Ken Boyer 116 .750 5.06 4.08 .606 127 82
278 John Romano 122 .748 5.05 4.07 .606 49 32
279 Mike Grady 126 .807 5.44 4.39 .606 49 32
280 Tommy Holmes 122 .760 5.13 4.14 .606 82 53
281 Earl Torgeson 117 .784 5.29 4.27 .606 87 57
282 Jackie Jensen 120 .782 5.28 4.26 .606 92 60
283 Jose Bautista 130 .822 5.55 4.48 .605 91 60
284 Shin-Soo Choo 128 .818 5.52 4.46 .605 73 48
285 Lenny Dykstra 120 .785 5.30 4.28 .605 77 50
286 Mike Greenwell 121 .785 5.30 4.28 .605 77 50
287 Larry Hisle 123 .741 5.00 4.04 .605 74 48
288 Chris Hoiles 119 .797 5.38 4.35 .605 49 32
289 Mickey Tettleton 122 .786 5.31 4.29 .605 84 55
290 Ripper Collins 126 .819 5.53 4.47 .605 62 40
291 David Justice 129 .856 5.77 4.67 .605 95 62
292 Jay Buhner 124 .806 5.44 4.40 .605 89 58
293 Kip Selbach 121 .804 5.43 4.39 .604 100 65
294 Hughie Jennings 118 .831 5.61 4.54 .604 78 51
295 Solly Hemus 115 .781 5.27 4.27 .604 46 30
296 Brian Downing 122 .755 5.10 4.13 .604 137 90
297 Gabby Hartnett 126 .828 5.59 4.53 .603 106 70
298 Dale Murphy 121 .760 5.13 4.16 .603 138 91
299 Adam Dunn 124 .831 5.61 4.55 .603 121 80
300 J.D. Drew 125 .862 5.82 4.72 .603 88 58
301 Fred Dunlap 134 .717 4.84 3.93 .603 63 41
302 Tim Salmon 128 .872 5.88 4.78 .602 100 66
303 Bobby Grich 125 .748 5.05 4.10 .602 122 80
304 Heinie Manush 121 .835 5.64 4.58 .602 120 79
305 Johnny Hopp 113 .762 5.14 4.18 .602 70 46
306 Elmer Valo 115 .766 5.17 4.20 .602 87 57
307 Vern Stephens 119 .762 5.14 4.18 .602 109 72
308 Lonnie Smith 118 .764 5.15 4.19 .602 88 58
309 Richie Hebner 119 .740 4.99 4.06 .602 105 69
310 Pat Mullin 115 .761 5.14 4.18 .602 42 28
311 Joe Mauer 127 .816 5.51 4.48 .602 97 64
312 Hal McRae 123 .745 5.03 4.09 .602 123 81
313 Jeff Burroughs 121 .745 5.03 4.09 .602 96 64
314 Smoky Burgess 116 .758 5.12 4.17 .601 74 49
315 Sixto Lezcano 124 .749 5.06 4.12 .601 72 48
316 Tony Lazzeri 121 .831 5.61 4.57 .601 104 69
317 Jake Beckley 125 .787 5.31 4.33 .601 151 100
318 Ron Cey 121 .747 5.04 4.11 .601 125 83
319 Joe Gordon 120 .765 5.17 4.21 .601 99 66
320 Wally Schang 117 .788 5.32 4.34 .601 89 59
321 John Olerud 129 .850 5.74 4.68 .601 127 84
322 Bill Madlock 123 .754 5.09 4.15 .601 111 74
323 Nick Etten 126 .755 5.10 4.16 .600 56 37
324 Juan Gonzalez 132 .849 5.73 4.68 .600 109 73
325 Mike Stanley 117 .794 5.36 4.38 .600 72 48
326 Ryan Howard 125 .812 5.48 4.48 .600 98 65
327 Tim Raines 123 .820 5.53 4.52 .600 148 99
328 Miller Huggins 107 .701 4.73 3.87 .599 96 64
329 Irish Meusel 118 .768 5.18 4.24 .599 79 53
330 Ron Northey 124 .759 5.12 4.19 .599 53 35
331 Ken Griffey 118 .750 5.06 4.14 .599 119 80
332 Adrian Gonzalez 133 .811 5.47 4.48 .599 112 75
333 Chase Utley 119 .813 5.49 4.50 .598 106 71
334 George Davis 121 .773 5.22 4.28 .598 145 98
335 George Wright 125 .653 4.41 3.62 .598 45 30
336 Edd Roush 126 .783 5.29 4.34 .597 118 80
337 Edwin Encarnacion 124 .805 5.43 4.46 .597 92 62
338 Moises Alou 128 .851 5.75 4.72 .597 116 78
339 Dick Stuart 117 .727 4.91 4.03 .597 69 46
340 Cesar Cedeno 123 .739 4.99 4.10 .597 125 85
341 Taffy Wright 115 .755 5.10 4.19 .597 58 39
342 Luke Appling 113 .784 5.29 4.35 .597 142 96
343 Roy White 121 .717 4.84 3.98 .597 115 78
344 Richie Ashburn 111 .769 5.19 4.27 .596 135 91
345 Steve Kemp 119 .753 5.08 4.18 .596 69 47
346 John Stone 116 .828 5.59 4.60 .596 70 48
347 Cecil Cooper 121 .740 4.99 4.11 .596 121 82
348 Jim Delahanty 122 .707 4.77 3.93 .596 68 46
349 Buck Freeman 132 .783 5.28 4.35 .596 67 46
350 Smoky Joe Wood 110 .725 4.89 4.03 .596 33 22
351 Bobby Doerr 115 .763 5.15 4.24 .596 120 81
352 Art Devlin 110 .698 4.71 3.88 .596 75 51
353 Dave Parker 121 .744 5.02 4.14 .596 156 106
354 Ed Konetchy 123 .713 4.82 3.97 .595 127 87
355 Mike Easler 118 .745 5.03 4.15 .595 61 41
356 Nelson Cruz 126 .801 5.41 4.46 .595 78 53
357 Al Oliver 121 .729 4.92 4.06 .595 148 101
358 Carlton Fisk 117 .740 4.99 4.12 .595 149 102
359 Charlie Hickman 133 .731 4.93 4.07 .595 63 43
360 Sammy Strang 113 .741 5.00 4.13 .595 49 33
361 Willie Horton 120 .718 4.84 4.00 .595 124 84
362 Don Buford 115 .701 4.73 3.91 .594 79 54
363 Wes Covington 122 .740 5.00 4.13 .594 50 34
364 Baby Doll Jacobson 112 .763 5.15 4.26 .594 88 60
365 Ned Williamson 114 .684 4.62 3.82 .594 75 51
366 Jocko Milligan 124 .746 5.04 4.17 .593 47 32
367 Dan McGann 117 .739 4.99 4.13 .593 86 59
368 Paul O’Neill 120 .784 5.29 4.38 .593 123 84
369 Patsy Dougherty 117 .688 4.64 3.85 .592 74 51
370 Ellis Burks 126 .832 5.62 4.66 .592 120 83
371 Jason Bay 121 .814 5.49 4.56 .592 76 52
372 Johnny Grubb 121 .737 4.97 4.13 .592 70 48
373 Cecil Fielder 119 .767 5.18 4.30 .592 89 61
374 Joe Adcock 124 .747 5.04 4.19 .592 112 77
375 Nick Johnson 123 .824 5.56 4.62 .592 46 32
376 Robinson Cano 127 .795 5.37 4.46 .592 117 81
377 Andy Van Slyke 119 .756 5.10 4.24 .591 96 66
378 Ron Fairly 117 .720 4.86 4.04 .591 123 85
379 Abner Dalrymple 122 .687 4.64 3.86 .591 65 45
380 Dale Long 115 .749 5.06 4.21 .591 51 35
381 Phil Cavarretta 118 .761 5.14 4.28 .590 109 75
382 Lou Whitaker 117 .749 5.05 4.21 .590 144 100
383 Amos Otis 115 .718 4.85 4.04 .590 124 86
384 Jesse Barfield 117 .738 4.98 4.15 .590 82 57
385 Heinie Zimmerman 121 .695 4.69 3.91 .590 86 60
386 Brad Hawpe 113 .809 5.46 4.55 .590 49 34
387 Bobby Bonilla 124 .780 5.26 4.39 .590 121 84
388 Jose Cruz 120 .730 4.93 4.11 .590 132 92
389 Shane Mack 121 .769 5.19 4.33 .589 47 33
390 Darren Daulton 114 .760 5.13 4.28 .589 62 43
391 Bob Cerv 122 .752 5.08 4.24 .589 38 27
392 Bobby Estalella 128 .757 5.11 4.27 .589 37 26
393 Lou Boudreau 120 .745 5.03 4.20 .589 101 70
394 Harold Baines 121 .766 5.17 4.32 .589 163 114
395 Pepper Martin 113 .786 5.30 4.43 .589 64 45
396 Danny Murphy 125 .702 4.74 3.96 .589 88 61
397 Dusty Baker 116 .722 4.87 4.07 .589 120 83
398 Chet Lemon 121 .736 4.97 4.15 .589 117 81
399 Glenn Davis 123 .741 5.00 4.18 .589 63 44
400 Bruce Campbell 110 .792 5.35 4.47 .589 76 53
401 Babe Young 117 .744 5.02 4.20 .588 39 28
402 Nate Colbert 119 .700 4.72 3.95 .588 60 42
403 Charlie Bennett 119 .698 4.71 3.94 .588 62 43
404 Sal Bando 119 .710 4.79 4.01 .588 122 85
405 George Wood 117 .697 4.71 3.94 .588 85 60
406 Dummy Hoy 110 .798 5.39 4.51 .588 113 79
407 Chet Laabs 113 .741 5.01 4.19 .588 52 37
408 Bob Robertson 114 .704 4.75 3.98 .588 41 29
409 Carlos Beltran 121 .814 5.49 4.60 .588 153 108
410 Chili Davis 121 .759 5.12 4.29 .588 147 103
411 Cy Seymour 119 .727 4.91 4.11 .588 89 63
412 Eddie Robinson 113 .741 5.00 4.19 .588 72 50
413 Willie Crawford 116 .702 4.74 3.97 .588 58 41
414 Johnny Callison 115 .710 4.79 4.02 .587 112 79
415 Carl Furillo 112 .751 5.07 4.25 .587 104 73
416 Mike Napoli 120 .784 5.29 4.44 .587 71 50
417 John Jaha 116 .798 5.39 4.52 .587 47 33
418 Jimmy Williams 115 .697 4.71 3.95 .587 89 63
419 Jayson Werth 118 .796 5.37 4.51 .587 87 61
420 Elbie Fletcher 117 .756 5.10 4.28 .587 81 57
421 Joe Ferguson 116 .720 4.86 4.08 .587 53 37
422 Perry Werden 118 .780 5.27 4.42 .587 43 30
423 Andy Pafko 117 .741 5.00 4.20 .587 104 73
424 Sam Mertes 113 .744 5.03 4.22 .586 72 51
425 Sam Rice 112 .774 5.22 4.39 .586 144 102
426 Ed Bailey 110 .735 4.96 4.17 .586 61 43
427 Sammy Sosa 128 .823 5.56 4.67 .586 148 104
428 Nomar Garciaparra 124 .848 5.72 4.81 .586 88 62
429 Toby Harrah 114 .721 4.86 4.09 .586 127 90
430 Joe Judge 114 .773 5.22 4.39 .585 128 91
431 Ted Simmons 118 .720 4.86 4.09 .585 144 102
432 Emmet Heidrick 113 .704 4.75 4.00 .585 49 34
433 Ben Oglivie 118 .719 4.86 4.09 .585 99 70
434 Ryne Sandberg 114 .749 5.06 4.26 .585 138 98
435 Ryan Klesko 128 .841 5.67 4.78 .585 93 66
436 John Wockenfuss 115 .724 4.89 4.12 .585 35 25
437 Howard Johnson 118 .743 5.02 4.23 .585 85 60
438 Gus Zernial 116 .750 5.06 4.27 .584 69 49
439 Rube Bressler 110 .766 5.17 4.36 .584 62 44
440 Del Ennis 117 .748 5.05 4.26 .584 119 84
441 Johnny Mostil 113 .780 5.27 4.45 .584 58 41
442 Al Smith 113 .736 4.97 4.20 .583 90 64
443 Andre Dawson 119 .740 4.99 4.22 .583 165 118
444 Tony Gonzalez 114 .701 4.73 4.00 .583 85 61
445 Don Baylor 118 .720 4.86 4.11 .583 141 101
446 Andre Ethier 122 .778 5.25 4.44 .583 77 55
447 Fred Luderus 114 .697 4.71 3.98 .583 78 56
448 Bob Meusel 118 .804 5.43 4.59 .583 87 62
449 Ival Goodman 119 .753 5.08 4.30 .583 64 46
450 Josh Willingham 120 .787 5.32 4.50 .582 66 47
451 Von Hayes 113 .726 4.90 4.15 .582 89 64
452 Frank Schulte 115 .677 4.57 3.87 .582 110 79
453 Donn Clendenon 117 .694 4.69 3.97 .582 78 56
454 Stan Lopata 114 .747 5.04 4.27 .582 44 32
455 Elmer Smith 113 .733 4.94 4.19 .582 53 38
456 Mickey Vernon 116 .734 4.96 4.20 .582 142 102
457 Darrell Porter 113 .718 4.85 4.11 .582 95 68
458 Sam Wise 114 .707 4.78 4.05 .582 74 53
459 Vada Pinson 111 .704 4.75 4.03 .582 157 113
460 Tom Haller 114 .693 4.68 3.97 .581 66 48
461 Harry Davis 119 .716 4.83 4.10 .581 107 77
462 Jim Northrup 116 .689 4.65 3.95 .581 79 57
463 Wally Post 110 .738 4.98 4.23 .581 66 48
464 Harry Hooper 114 .726 4.90 4.16 .581 144 104
465 Buddy Lewis 111 .745 5.03 4.27 .581 84 61
466 Gary Roenicke 117 .725 4.90 4.16 .581 47 34
467 Jerry Lynch 110 .724 4.88 4.15 .581 47 34
468 Gates Brown 110 .689 4.65 3.95 .581 38 27
469 Ernie Lombardi 126 .751 5.07 4.31 .581 93 67
470 Scott Rolen 122 .823 5.55 4.72 .581 121 87
471 Matt Kemp 124 .773 5.22 4.44 .580 87 63
472 Magglio Ordonez 125 .824 5.56 4.73 .580 111 81
473 Victor Martinez 123 .785 5.30 4.51 .580 103 75
474 George McQuinn 110 .730 4.93 4.20 .579 94 69
475 Hank Leiber 122 .763 5.15 4.39 .579 45 33
476 Jack Rowe 115 .668 4.51 3.85 .579 67 49
477 Dustin Pedroia 115 .771 5.20 4.44 .579 89 65
478 Bernie Williams 125 .824 5.56 4.75 .579 127 92
479 Dan Driessen 113 .720 4.86 4.15 .579 92 67
480 Bill Dahlen 110 .741 5.00 4.27 .578 144 105
481 Ezra Sutton 120 .642 4.33 3.70 .578 82 60
482 Duke Sims 111 .683 4.61 3.94 .578 41 30
483 Carlos May 111 .693 4.68 4.00 .577 69 50
484 Fielder Jones 112 .708 4.78 4.09 .577 109 80
485 Bill Freehan 112 .691 4.66 3.99 .577 101 74
486 Curtis Granderson 116 .775 5.23 4.48 .577 101 74
487 Bill Skowron 119 .714 4.82 4.13 .577 91 67
488 Curt Walker 110 .787 5.31 4.55 .577 77 56
489 Derrek Lee 122 .818 5.52 4.73 .577 113 83
490 Harvey Hendrick 113 .793 5.36 4.59 .577 44 33
491 Bill Melton 112 .691 4.67 4.00 .576 67 49
492 Earl Smith 111 .786 5.31 4.55 .576 35 26
493 Tom York 119 .629 4.25 3.64 .576 62 46
494 Tillie Walker 115 .715 4.83 4.14 .576 82 60
495 Casey Stengel 120 .725 4.90 4.20 .576 69 51
496 Danny Litwhiler 119 .720 4.86 4.17 .576 56 41
497 Justin Morneau 120 .777 5.24 4.50 .576 92 68
498 Joe Start 121 .628 4.24 3.64 .576 71 52
499 Wally Joyner 117 .757 5.11 4.39 .575 115 85
500 George Scott 114 .686 4.63 3.98 .575 125 92
501 Ray Boone 114 .736 4.97 4.27 .575 76 56
502 Jimmy Collins 113 .721 4.87 4.19 .575 105 78
503 Dale Mitchell 114 .735 4.96 4.27 .575 61 45
504 Max Carey 108 .735 4.96 4.27 .575 151 112
505 Mark Grace 119 .799 5.39 4.64 .574 127 94
506 Robin Yount 115 .714 4.82 4.15 .574 179 133
507 George Burns 113 .740 4.99 4.30 .574 102 76
508 Orator Shafer 121 .643 4.34 3.74 .574 54 40
509 Grady Sizemore 115 .770 5.20 4.48 .574 67 50
510 Walker Cooper 116 .720 4.86 4.19 .574 76 56
511 John Milner 112 .700 4.72 4.07 .574 58 43
512 Jim Lemon 114 .727 4.91 4.23 .574 57 42
513 George Kell 112 .722 4.87 4.20 .574 107 80
514 Frankie Frisch 110 .780 5.26 4.54 .573 140 104
515 Johnny Moore 111 .757 5.11 4.41 .573 46 34
516 Felipe Alou 113 .690 4.66 4.02 .573 117 87
517 Johnny Evers 106 .668 4.51 3.89 .573 101 75
518 Ed McKean 114 .786 5.30 4.58 .573 103 77
519 Spud Davis 110 .756 5.10 4.41 .572 66 49
520 Lee May 116 .689 4.65 4.02 .572 125 94
521 Andres Galarraga 119 .792 5.34 4.62 .572 129 96
522 Jake Daubert 117 .711 4.80 4.15 .572 124 93
523 Gary Carter 115 .709 4.79 4.14 .572 132 99
524 Kevin Seitzer 111 .738 4.98 4.31 .572 84 63
525 Ray Lankford 123 .808 5.45 4.72 .572 94 71
526 Heinie Groh 118 .725 4.90 4.24 .571 97 72
527 Jorge Posada 121 .812 5.48 4.75 .571 99 74
528 Dave Kingman 115 .699 4.72 4.09 .571 114 85
529 Cleon Jones 110 .675 4.56 3.95 .571 70 52
530 Joe Sewell 108 .779 5.26 4.56 .571 111 83
531 Davey Johnson 110 .680 4.59 3.98 .571 80 60
532 Bobby Thomson 110 .726 4.90 4.25 .571 102 77
533 Pat Burrell 116 .800 5.40 4.69 .570 91 68
534 Luis Gonzalez 119 .805 5.44 4.72 .570 147 111
535 Hank Bauer 113 .728 4.91 4.27 .570 83 63
536 Bob Fothergill 115 .783 5.28 4.59 .570 49 37
537 Wally Westlake 111 .731 4.94 4.29 .570 51 38
538 Buddy Myer 108 .776 5.24 4.55 .570 109 83
539 Chicken Wolf 118 .683 4.61 4.01 .569 74 56
540 Dode Paskert 108 .676 4.56 3.97 .569 99 75
541 Barry Larkin 116 .790 5.33 4.64 .569 126 95
542 Bob Bailey 111 .679 4.58 3.99 .569 103 78
543 George Bell 113 .707 4.78 4.16 .569 99 75
544 George Hendrick 117 .699 4.72 4.11 .568 116 88
545 George Burns 114 .716 4.83 4.21 .568 115 87
546 Gorman Thomas 114 .702 4.74 4.13 .568 81 62
547 Jake Stahl 120 .663 4.47 3.90 .568 56 43
548 Hal Chase 112 .661 4.46 3.89 .568 116 88
549 Jim Pagliaroni 110 .693 4.68 4.08 .568 41 31
550 Dave Magadan 112 .746 5.03 4.39 .568 66 50
551 Kevin McReynolds 115 .715 4.83 4.21 .568 88 67
552 Steve Garvey 117 .698 4.71 4.11 .568 140 107
553 Hideki Matsui 118 .781 5.27 4.60 .568 70 54
554 Sam West 104 .764 5.16 4.50 .568 95 72
555 Bibb Falk 113 .779 5.26 4.59 .568 72 55
556 Dick Hoblitzell 111 .665 4.49 3.92 .568 77 59
557 Paul Konerko 118 .787 5.31 4.64 .567 135 103
558 Mike Sweeney 118 .811 5.47 4.78 .567 82 62
559 Gus Suhr 113 .770 5.20 4.54 .567 81 62
560 Fred Tenney 110 .717 4.84 4.23 .567 118 91
561 Lee Mazzilli 110 .703 4.74 4.15 .566 68 52
562 Frank LaPorte 110 .658 4.44 3.89 .566 66 51
563 Dwayne Murphy 115 .703 4.75 4.16 .566 75 57
564 Troy Glaus 119 .805 5.43 4.76 .566 89 68
565 Hal Morris 111 .742 5.01 4.39 .565 62 48
566 Ben Zobrist 118 .750 5.06 4.44 .565 79 61
567 Cliff Floyd 119 .811 5.47 4.80 .565 84 65
568 Clyde Milan 109 .677 4.57 4.01 .565 116 89
569 Max West 114 .704 4.75 4.17 .565 43 33
570 Jeff Kent 123 .805 5.44 4.77 .565 135 104
571 Brett Butler 110 .719 4.85 4.26 .565 132 102
572 Bruce Bochte 113 .696 4.70 4.13 .564 85 65
573 Thurman Munson 116 .685 4.62 4.06 .564 85 66
574 Johnny Lindell 113 .703 4.74 4.17 .564 45 35
575 Jack Glasscock 112 .694 4.69 4.12 .564 105 81
576 Carlos Pena 117 .766 5.17 4.55 .564 82 64
577 Graig Nettles 110 .685 4.63 4.07 .564 148 115
578 Ron Kittle 110 .702 4.74 4.17 .564 45 35
579 Roberto Alomar 116 .783 5.28 4.65 .563 144 112
580 Billy Herman 112 .725 4.90 4.31 .563 119 93
581 Bill Hinchman 118 .658 4.44 3.91 .563 49 38
582 Andy Seminick 107 .707 4.77 4.20 .563 65 50
583 Doug DeCinces 115 .698 4.71 4.15 .563 96 75
584 Ken Caminiti 116 .740 4.99 4.40 .563 101 79
585 Jim Fregosi 113 .674 4.55 4.01 .563 106 82
586 Matty McIntyre 110 .659 4.45 3.92 .563 62 48
587 Derek Jeter 115 .785 5.30 4.67 .563 172 134
588 Dan Pasqua 112 .709 4.79 4.22 .563 43 33
589 Billy Southworth 111 .721 4.87 4.29 .563 69 53
590 Alan Trammell 110 .711 4.80 4.23 .563 133 103
591 Jack Clements 117 .742 5.01 4.42 .562 64 50
592 Ian Kinsler 111 .745 5.03 4.44 .562 98 76
593 Aramis Ramirez 115 .773 5.22 4.61 .562 128 100
594 Ryan Zimmerman 115 .748 5.05 4.46 .562 86 68
595 Frank McCormick 118 .717 4.84 4.28 .561 88 69
596 Pete Runnels 107 .703 4.75 4.20 .561 100 78
597 Ivan Calderon 113 .700 4.72 4.18 .561 54 42
598 Larry Gardner 109 .685 4.62 4.09 .561 107 84
599 Nick Swisher 113 .750 5.06 4.48 .561 88 69
600 Matt Stairs 117 .790 5.33 4.72 .560 83 65
601 Shawn Green 120 .807 5.45 4.83 .560 111 87
602 Ellis Valentine 113 .690 4.66 4.13 .560 51 40
603 Gil McDougald 111 .706 4.77 4.23 .560 76 59
604 Joe Collins 111 .716 4.83 4.29 .559 38 30
605 Eric Soderholm 110 .679 4.58 4.07 .559 47 37
606 Rick Reichardt 115 .657 4.43 3.94 .559 54 43
607 Cal Ripken 112 .722 4.87 4.33 .559 184 145
608 Pat Duncan 110 .692 4.67 4.16 .558 43 34
609 Steve Henderson 114 .696 4.70 4.18 .558 56 44
610 Manny Mota 112 .670 4.53 4.03 .558 60 48
611 Mike Marshall 115 .690 4.66 4.15 .558 57 45
612 Ken Keltner 112 .705 4.76 4.24 .558 91 72
613 Billy Goodman 99 .710 4.79 4.27 .557 87 69
614 Walton Cruise 114 .688 4.64 4.14 .557 37 29
615 Amos Strunk 112 .680 4.59 4.09 .557 80 64
616 Glenallen Hill 112 .734 4.95 4.42 .557 59 47
617 John Anderson 114 .710 4.79 4.28 .557 94 75
618 Pie Traynor 107 .757 5.11 4.56 .556 113 90
619 Carney Lansford 111 .688 4.65 4.15 .556 113 90
620 Freddie Lindstrom 110 .759 5.13 4.58 .556 84 67
621 Nick Markakis 111 .736 4.97 4.44 .556 101 81
622 Sherm Lollar 104 .701 4.73 4.23 .556 87 69
623 Jerry Mumphrey 108 .686 4.63 4.14 .555 78 63
624 Brian McCann 113 .738 4.98 4.46 .555 84 67
625 Del Pratt 112 .688 4.64 4.16 .554 107 86
626 Willie Randolph 104 .684 4.62 4.14 .554 129 104
627 Eric Chavez 115 .765 5.16 4.63 .554 87 70
628 Richie Sexson 120 .793 5.35 4.80 .554 79 63
629 Adrian Beltre 116 .759 5.13 4.60 .554 159 128
630 Adam LaRoche 111 .739 4.99 4.48 .554 89 72
631 John Clapp 118 .599 4.04 3.63 .554 37 30
632 Trot Nixon 112 .795 5.37 4.82 .554 57 46
633 Mike Ivie 110 .671 4.53 4.07 .553 43 34
634 Alfonso Soriano 112 .761 5.14 4.62 .553 121 98
635 Matty Alou 105 .659 4.45 4.00 .553 88 71
636 Andy Leonard 110 .594 4.01 3.61 .553 35 28
637 Corey Hart 112 .737 4.98 4.48 .552 59 48
638 Terry Puhl 112 .684 4.62 4.16 .552 77 62
639 John Morrill 111 .623 4.21 3.79 .552 74 60
640 Lonny Frey 104 .701 4.73 4.27 .551 86 70
641 Michael Cuddyer 113 .744 5.02 4.53 .551 86 70
642 Reggie Sanders 115 .779 5.26 4.75 .551 99 81
643 Elston Howard 108 .668 4.51 4.08 .550 84 69
644 Tim McCarver 102 .661 4.46 4.04 .549 87 71
645 Fred Merkle 110 .674 4.55 4.12 .549 89 73
646 Joe Rudi 112 .657 4.43 4.02 .549 88 73
647 Frank Demaree 110 .709 4.79 4.34 .549 64 52
648 Bob O’Farrell 98 .717 4.84 4.39 .549 63 52
649 Geoff Jenkins 114 .782 5.28 4.80 .547 72 60
650 Rick Ferrell 95 .711 4.80 4.37 .547 92 76
651 Adam Lind 112 .722 4.88 4.44 .547 67 55
652 Eddie Murphy 114 .688 4.64 4.23 .547 36 30
653 Russell Branyan 113 .766 5.17 4.72 .545 47 39
654 Robin Ventura 114 .759 5.12 4.68 .545 111 93
655 Milton Bradley 113 .761 5.13 4.69 .545 56 47
656 Andruw Jones 111 .765 5.16 4.72 .545 121 101
657 Kendrys Morales 115 .719 4.85 4.44 .544 58 48
658 Bernard Gilkey 110 .721 4.87 4.46 .544 64 54
659 Sam Leslie 116 .743 5.01 4.60 .543 36 30
660 Ron Gant 112 .750 5.06 4.65 .542 102 86
661 Mike Morse 117 .719 4.85 4.46 .542 39 33
662 Greg Vaughn 113 .754 5.09 4.68 .542 97 82
663 Tino Martinez 112 .758 5.11 4.71 .541 110 93
664 Jim Gilliam 93 .669 4.52 4.17 .540 111 95
665 Matt Williams 113 .729 4.92 4.54 .540 108 92
666 Frankie Hayes 101 .684 4.61 4.27 .539 70 60
667 Jeromy Burnitz 112 .773 5.22 4.83 .539 89 76
668 Kevin Millar 110 .766 5.17 4.79 .538 71 61
669 Lloyd Waner 99 .704 4.75 4.41 .537 109 94
670 Les Mann 110 .677 4.57 4.25 .537 71 61
671 Bobby Higginson 113 .771 5.21 4.84 .536 75 65
672 Lance Parrish 106 .670 4.52 4.21 .536 111 96
673 Aubrey Huff 114 .746 5.04 4.69 .535 92 80
674 Raul Ibanez 111 .741 5.00 4.66 .535 113 98
675 Dave Robertson 116 .650 4.39 4.09 .535 43 37
676 David Segui 110 .750 5.06 4.72 .535 72 63
677 Jermaine Dye 111 .764 5.16 4.81 .535 99 86
678 Dmitri Young 114 .765 5.17 4.82 .535 71 62
679 Manny Sanguillen 102 .638 4.31 4.02 .535 76 66
680 Johnny Kling 100 .625 4.22 3.94 .534 63 55
681 Ernie Whitt 99 .658 4.44 4.15 .534 60 52
682 Don Slaught 104 .677 4.57 4.27 .534 62 54
683 Javy Lopez 112 .757 5.11 4.78 .533 80 70
684 Tony Clark 112 .762 5.14 4.81 .533 70 61
685 Julio Franco 111 .727 4.91 4.60 .532 130 115
686 Willie Wilson 94 .658 4.44 4.18 .531 115 102
687 Gus Triandos 103 .658 4.44 4.18 .530 62 55
688 Raul Mondesi 113 .758 5.12 4.82 .530 87 77
689 Carlos Guillen 111 .741 5.00 4.72 .529 70 62
690 Phil Nevin 114 .759 5.12 4.84 .528 63 56
691 Ken Oberkfell 97 .651 4.39 4.16 .527 73 66
692 Joe Tinker 96 .610 4.12 3.90 .527 99 88
693 Willie Kamm 97 .716 4.83 4.58 .527 88 79
694 Russell Martin 103 .694 4.69 4.44 .527 76 69
695 Phil Masi 97 .652 4.40 4.18 .526 53 48
696 Torii Hunter 110 .720 4.86 4.62 .525 133 120
697 Hank Severeid 92 .654 4.42 4.22 .523 62 57
698 John Roseboro 95 .628 4.24 4.05 .522 75 68
699 Tom Herr 95 .644 4.35 4.16 .522 81 74
700 Donie Bush 91 .628 4.24 4.06 .521 113 103
701 Phil Rizzuto 93 .645 4.36 4.19 .520 88 82
702 Mike Scioscia 99 .637 4.30 4.15 .518 66 62
703 Dave Bancroft 98 .669 4.51 4.36 .517 105 98
704 Ivan Rodriguez 106 .720 4.86 4.70 .517 139 130
705 Terry Steinbach 102 .666 4.50 4.35 .517 80 75
706 Cesar Geronimo 93 .623 4.21 4.08 .515 57 53
707 Butch Wynegar 93 .635 4.29 4.16 .515 66 62
708 Art Fletcher 100 .621 4.19 4.07 .515 80 76
709 Nellie Fox 93 .640 4.32 4.22 .512 134 128
710 Jason Varitek 99 .716 4.83 4.73 .511 76 73
711 Milt Stock 97 .637 4.30 4.21 .511 90 86
712 Dots Miller 96 .606 4.09 4.03 .508 86 83
713 Steve O’Neill 88 .638 4.31 4.26 .506 69 68
714 Maury Wills 88 .598 4.04 4.00 .504 110 108
715 Del Crandall 96 .625 4.22 4.19 .504 76 74
716 Steve Sax 95 .623 4.21 4.19 .502 101 100
717 Mike Lieberthal 101 .719 4.86 4.84 .502 60 60
718 Jim Davenport 90 .599 4.05 4.04 .501 66 66
719 Terry Kennedy 96 .617 4.17 4.16 .501 72 72
720 Muddy Ruel 83 .651 4.39 4.39 .500 64 64
721 Tony Taylor 88 .595 4.02 4.02 .500 113 113
722 Bobby Wallace 104 .613 4.14 4.15 .499 87 87
723 Dick Groat 89 .612 4.13 4.14 .499 107 107
724 Doc Cramer 87 .646 4.36 4.37 .499 125 126
725 Johnny Edwards 85 .589 3.97 3.99 .498 67 68
726 Yadier Molina 98 .658 4.44 4.48 .496 80 81
727 Jason Kendall 95 .698 4.71 4.78 .493 106 109
728 Roger Peckinpaugh 86 .616 4.16 4.22 .492 105 108
729 Eddie Foster 88 .601 4.05 4.12 .492 79 82
730 Alan Ashby 93 .601 4.06 4.14 .490 61 63
731 Ozzie Smith 87 .614 4.14 4.23 .489 136 142
732 Mark Loretta 98 .697 4.70 4.81 .489 80 84
733 Terry Turner 89 .567 3.83 3.92 .488 85 89
734 Jeff Reed 82 .629 4.25 4.35 .488 45 47
735 Jose Offerman 94 .680 4.59 4.71 .487 80 84
736 Jimmy Austin 90 .586 3.96 4.07 .486 79 84
737 Ramon Hernandez 96 .670 4.52 4.65 .486 72 76
738 Jim Sundberg 90 .595 4.02 4.14 .485 88 93
739 Ossie Bluege 85 .656 4.43 4.57 .484 90 95
740 Rick Dempsey 87 .589 3.98 4.11 .483 69 74
741 Jimmie Wilson 82 .653 4.41 4.56 .483 64 68
742 Enos Cabell 93 .587 3.96 4.10 .483 83 89
743 Todd Hundley 102 .696 4.70 4.87 .482 54 58
744 Scott Fletcher 85 .601 4.05 4.21 .481 75 81
745 Frank Snyder 89 .603 4.07 4.24 .480 57 62
746 A.J. Pierzynski 94 .652 4.40 4.60 .478 99 108
747 Marty Marion 81 .591 3.99 4.18 .477 77 84
748 Jim Gantner 88 .587 3.96 4.15 .477 86 94
749 Darrin Fletcher 92 .659 4.45 4.67 .475 54 59
750 Gregg Zaun 91 .674 4.55 4.78 .475 49 54
751 Ray Schalk 83 .604 4.08 4.29 .475 75 83
752 Luis Castillo 92 .672 4.54 4.78 .474 88 98
753 Charlie Moore 89 .584 3.94 4.15 .474 57 63
754 Garry Templeton 87 .583 3.93 4.15 .473 106 118
755 Ivey Wingo 90 .592 3.99 4.22 .473 54 60
756 Juan Pierre 84 .648 4.37 4.62 .472 101 113
757 Rick Manning 84 .582 3.93 4.16 .471 73 82
758 George Cutshaw 87 .576 3.89 4.13 .470 78 88
759 Derrel Thomas 84 .569 3.84 4.08 .470 66 74
760 Bob Boone 82 .574 3.88 4.12 .470 102 115
761 Spike Owen 83 .590 3.98 4.24 .468 69 78
762 Manny Trillo 81 .573 3.87 4.14 .466 82 93
763 George Gibson 81 .537 3.63 3.88 .466 52 59
764 Jerry Grote 83 .556 3.75 4.02 .466 60 69
765 Steve Yeager 83 .565 3.82 4.10 .464 51 58
766 Bill Russell 83 .563 3.80 4.09 .463 100 116
767 Mike Heath 88 .572 3.86 4.16 .463 58 67
768 Cookie Rojas 83 .547 3.69 3.99 .461 86 101
769 Gus Mancuso 84 .603 4.07 4.41 .460 60 70
770 Mark McLemore 82 .633 4.27 4.64 .459 85 100
771 Benito Santiago 93 .631 4.26 4.64 .457 93 110
772 Rabbit Maranville 82 .591 3.99 4.36 .456 133 159
773 Howie Shanks 81 .569 3.84 4.20 .455 78 93
774 Tony Pena 84 .575 3.88 4.25 .455 88 105
775 Al Lopez 83 .591 3.99 4.38 .453 78 94
776 Billy Jurges 82 .581 3.92 4.31 .453 83 101
777 Sandy Alomar 86 .624 4.21 4.67 .448 59 72
778 Bengie Molina 86 .624 4.21 4.76 .439 61 78
779 Dan Wilson 80 .603 4.07 4.77 .422 52 71
780 Chris Gomez 82 .603 4.07 4.81 .417 56 79