clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Rookies of the Year by WAR

I'm in the process of doing a longer look at Rookies of the Year by WAR, but I thought I'd share some interesting things I found while collecting the data.

All data courtesy of BaseballProjection.

Update: I missed a few of the top seasons


Top 5 ROTY Seasons

Player Year League WAR
Dick Allen 1964 NL 8.9
Ichiro Suzuki 2001 AL 7.9
Fred Lynn 1975 AL 7
Albert Pujols 2001 NL 7
Carlton Fisk 1972 AL 6.8


I know all about his issues (both injury and personality), but man, Dick Allen was a special talent.

Bottom 5 ROTY Seasons

Player Year League WAR
Ken Hubbs 1962 NL -1
Albie Pearson 1958 AL 0
Eric Karros 1992 NL 0
Chris Chambliss 1971 AL 0.1
Tommy Helms 1966 NL 1


Ken Hubbs was supposed to be an amazing fielder (although Total Zone disagrees) but I can't believe the ROTY went to some one who hit .260 with 5 home runs (and a .299 OBP and a 70 OPS+ for those more sabermetrically inclined).

Best 5 Seasons by a ROTY Winner

Player Year WAR
Rod Carew 1977 11.2
Albert Pujols 2003 11.1
Cal Ripken 1991 10.8
Albert Pujols* 2008 10
Scott Rolen* 2004 9.5
Cal Ripken 1984 9.4
Johnny Bench 1972 9.3

* omissions from my original list


It's easy to forget with the streak and a bunch of eh seasons (for an inner circle HOFer) but Ripken turned in two amazing seasons, 7 years apart.

Worst 5 Seasons by a ROTY Winner

Player Year WAR
Lou Pinella 1973 -3
Tommy Helms 1970 -2.7
Alfredo Griffin 1990 -2.5
Alfredo Griffin 1984 -2.1
Lou Pinella 1975 -2.1


I can't believe managers kept running Pinella and Griffin out there. Although Pinella did manage to sandwich a 2.9 WAR season in the middle of the two stinkers. And Griffin's two bad ones were 6 years apart.

More detailed analysis to come...