Aren't there a lot rookies who have good-great first years and then bupkis. Ben Grieve springs to mind.
― One bad call from barely losing to (Alex in SF), Wednesday, 12 November 2014 00:16 (five years ago) link
You can't just use percentage-of-career-WAR as a qualifier, or at least not set the bar at 33%; if you do, Brady Anderson's '96 doesn't qualify as an outlier, even if you limit WAR to offense only. (He's just under 20% of his career offensive WAR in '96.) I think you'd need a combination: percentage of career WAR, and also a ratio of the outlier year compared to second-best year. Anderson doesn't qualify because he had a bunch of pretty good years, and one other season better than that. You'd need a combination of the two that somehow lets Brady Anderson's '96 in.
― clemenza, Wednesday, 12 November 2014 00:18 (five years ago) link
(xpost) I think that's true, but Grieve might not fit--his first three years are all pretty close (with adjustments, his first was a bit better). Never did much after that, though.
― clemenza, Wednesday, 12 November 2014 00:25 (five years ago) link
Steve Finley magically transformed from an 8-HR-a-year guy to a slugger at age 31.
― things lose meaning over time (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 12 November 2014 13:00 (five years ago) link
Bobby Shantz's MVP year in 1952.
― timellison, Friday, 3 April 2015 16:51 (four years ago) link
Never realized the 1950 Whiz Kid Phillies included a relief pitcher MVP in Jim Konstanty.
― timellison, Tuesday, 7 July 2015 23:34 (four years ago) link
He gets a chapter in the first baseball book I read as a kid, so I learned about him before three-quarters of the people in the HOF.
He wasn't the worst choice ever, but, just among Phillies pitchers that year, Robin Roberts would have obviously been much better.
― clemenza, Wednesday, 8 July 2015 01:18 (four years ago) link
Always thought Cito Gaston had more good years, but maybe not so much. 5.1 bWAR in 1970, but ended up with a negative for his career.
― timellison, Monday, 18 June 2018 20:27 (one year ago) link
As I've posted before (but seemingly not on this thread), 1970 is the mother of all outlier seasons.
― clemenza, Monday, 18 June 2018 22:37 (one year ago) link
Jim Gentile 1961. 141 RBI tied for lead league the year Maris broke the record.
― timellison, Saturday, 10 November 2018 23:28 (one year ago) link
Brady Anderson turns 55 today. With that in mind - when you think of one player in any sport having one season where they are mind-blowingly better than in any other year of their career - who do you think of and what year— Nick Shepkowski (@Shep670) January 18, 2019
― mookieproof, Friday, 18 January 2019 17:08 (one year ago) link
Another 1970 one, Tommy Harper:
― timellison, Thursday, 2 May 2019 01:38 (nine months ago) link
It's not epic, and it's not a season, but this seems as appropriate a place as anywhere--Brian Harper's few years catching for the Twins in the late-'80s/early-'90s. (His picture popped up today in that little photo gallery to the left of the Baseball Reference page.) From '79 to '87, he plays for five teams, plays all over the diamond, and basically does nothing. Then he has five-and-a-half really solid seasons with the Twins, hitting .294-.325 every year, with OBPs around .350 and slugging averages in the low-mid .400s (except for his last year there, very much a pitcher's era), and has a fantastic Series when the Twins win everything in '91. Then he leaves in '94, gets 300 more AB elsewhere the next two years, then he retires.
― clemenza, Monday, 12 August 2019 23:43 (six months ago) link
Dug up this:
― clemenza, Monday, 12 August 2019 23:49 (six months ago) link
Jesus Aguilar is looking like a potential inner circle outlier season guy
― omar little, Tuesday, 13 August 2019 00:01 (six months ago) link
see also his former teammate, gio urshela
― mookieproof, Tuesday, 13 August 2019 02:12 (six months ago) link
rick porcello's 2016
― mookieproof, Thursday, 19 September 2019 17:41 (five months ago) link
a whole bunch of guys you forgot about the moment they retired
Shane Reynolds (948.7)Charles Nagy (948.0)Brad Penny (945.6)Matt Morris (939.6)Jon Lieber (938.0)Denny Neagle (931.9)Pat Hentgen (931.0)John Smiley (928.9)Josh Beckett (927.4)Yovani Gallardo (923.9)
― omar little, Thursday, 19 September 2019 17:44 (five months ago) link
Epic outlier in reverse: Wade Boggs, 1992 (his last season in Boston). No recollection--what happened? The Margo Adams thing was a couple of years earlier.
― clemenza, Monday, 10 February 2020 14:15 (two weeks ago) link
mike marshall, 1974
― But guess what? Nobody gives a toot!😂 (Karl Malone), Tuesday, 11 February 2020 06:16 (two weeks ago) link
Only in the freakish 100+ games, though--he was arguably better in '73, and definitely better in '72.
― clemenza, Tuesday, 11 February 2020 14:43 (two weeks ago) link