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Baseball's All-Time Leaders in WAR per Season (WAR per 162 Games, or WAR/162)
with consideration of WAR7, WAR5, cWAR5 and WAR per Plate Appearance


The WAR Hall of Fame below is based on WAR per season (that is, WAR per 162 games). We also have a team based on WAR per plate appearance. The position indicated is the player's primary position. The team indicated is the player's primary team. Babe Ruth's WAR has been adjusted to not reflect years when he was primarily a pitcher. If his pitching WAR were included, his WAR/162 would be 10.90, but pitching WAR was inflated during baseball's early days when pitchers accumulated outlandish numbers of innings and wins. Thus, of the top 29 WAR seasons, only one is by a hitter (Ruth). That doesn't seem fair to other hitters, although what Ruth did on the mound was truly remarkable.

We will also consider peak WAR in the form of WAR7, WAR5 and cWAR5 (for five consecutive seasons). Anyone who appears on all the lists will be a star of the highest magnitude.

Please keep in mind that 8 WAR is MVP level. So the top players on the lists below played at an MVP level for their entire careers. The all-star level is 5 WAR, so every player on this list played at a composite all-star level for his entire career. It seems safe to say that any player who made this list was elite, while those who averaged 6.5 WAR or higher were transcendent.

The Best Players by Position, according to WAR per Season (with starters underlined and active players bolded)

Catcher: Johnny Bench (5.62), Mike Piazza (5.40), Mickey Cochrane (5.30), Thurman Munson (5.25), Roy Campanella (5.09), Bill Dickey (5.05)
First Base: Lou Gehrig (8.41), Dan Brouthers (7.60), Hank Greenberg (7.10), Roger Connor (6.84), Jimmie Foxx (6.79), Jeff Bagwell (6.04), Johnny Mize (5.90), Joey Votto (5.76)
Second Base: Rogers Hornsby (9.10), Eddie Collins (6.91), Jackie Robinson (6.71), Nap Lajoie (6.43), Joe Gordon (6.27), Joe Morgan (6.04), Bobby Grich (5.74), Chase Utley (5.65)
Shortstop: Honus Wagner (7.58), Alex Rodriguez (6.58), Arky Vaughn (6.47), Lou Boudreau (6.35), Andrelton Simmons (5.88), George Davis (5.76), Jim Glasscock (5.75)
Third Base: Mike Schmidt (7.18), Eddie Matthews (6.51), Frank "Home Run" Baker (6.46), Kris Bryant (6.06), Wade Boggs (5.87), Evan Longoria (5.60), Scott Rolen (5.58), Chipper Jones (5.48)
Right Field: Hank Aaron (6.70), Mel Ott (6.56), Frank Robinson (6.00), Larry Walker (5.92), Elmer Flick (5.81), Roberto Clemente (5.37), Reggie Smith (5.27)
Center Field: Mike Trout (9.89), Willie Mays (8.47), Ty Cobb (8.06), Tris Speaker (7.79), *Joe DiMaggio (7.75), Mickey Mantle (7.58), Billy Hamilton (6.44)
Left Field: *Ted Williams (9.22), Barry Bonds (8.83), "Shoeless" Joe Jackson (7.36), Stan Musial (6.79), Ed Delahanty (6.15), *Charlie Keller (5.97), Rickey Henderson (5.59)
Designated Hitter: Babe Ruth (10.48), Albert Pujols (5.61), Dick Allen (5.44), Charlie Gehringer (5.48), Mark McGwire (5.38), Rod Carew (5.33), Ralph Kiner (5.24), Al Simmons (5.07)
Utility: Pete Rose (he was an all-star at five different positions, playing more than 500 games at each, while averaging 5.5 WAR in his prime years)

* Adjusted for military service

Positive Surprises: Mike Trout (9.89), Dan Brouthers (7.60), Roger Connor (6.84), Arky Vaughn (6.47), Billy Hamilton (6.44), Lou Boudreau (6.35), Joe Gordon (6.27), Ed Delahanty (6.15), Larry Walker (5.92), Andrelton Simmons (5.88), Elmer Flick (5.81), George Davis (5.76), Jim Glasscock (5.75), Bobby Grich (5.74), Chase Utley (5.65), Scott Rolen (5.58), Al Rosen (5.46), Lenny Dykstra (5.39), Adrian Beltre (5.32), Reggie Smith (5.27), Kenny Lofton (5.26), Wally Berger (5.12), Lou Whitaker (5.09), Ken Boyer (5.00), Bill Dahlen (4.99), Joe Mauer (4.79)

It's no surprise that Mike Trout, the best player of his generation by a wide margin, is on this list. It is surprising that he has already eclipsed the immortal centerfielders and is now now second only to Babe Ruth in WAR per season. If he can stay healthy long enough, Trout has a chance to be the GOAT (greatest of all time), or at least finish in the top ten. Trout's teammate, shortstop Andrelton Simmons, did catch me by surprise. Larry Walker, Bobby Grich, Chase Utley and Scott Rolen clearly belong in the Hall of Fame, according to WAR per season. But all the players in "Positive Surprises" deserve careful consideration for inclusion if they're not already members. Lenny Dykstra only had 500 at-bats three times, due to injuries and a wild lifestyle, so he may be an exception.

Negative Surprises: Leo Durocher (0.51), Connie Mack (1.25), "Little Poison" Lloyd Waner (1.96), Harold Baines (2.27), Casey Stengel (2.55), High Pockets Kelly (2.55), Rick Ferrell (2.56), Ray Schalk (2.63), Bill Mazeroski (2.73), Jim Bottomley (2.87)

There are some low-WAR players in the HOF, although Durocher, Mack and Stengel are better known as managers. While he batted .316 with 2,459 hits, Lloyd Waner was an average player according to WAR and OPS+. Harold Baines had a good career but he never had a five-WAR season. Rick Ferrell wasn't even the best hitter in his own family; his brother Wes, a pitcher, was! Mazeroski also never had a five-WAR season and his OPS+ was well below average at 84, although he may have been the best defensive second baseman of all time.

Other Negative Surprises: Dave Parker (2.63), Steve Garvey (2.65), Elston Howard (2.72)

We were surprised that Steve "my hair is always perfect" Garvey made this list. Ditto for the Cobra.

These are the players who should be considered for the Baseball Hall of Fame based on their Peak WAR and total WAR, with the players with the highest peaks underlined: Pete Rose (44.9/79.7), Shoeless Joe Jackson (52.5/62.2), Bill Dahlen (40.2/75.4), Larry Walker (44.7/72.7), Derek Jeter (41.8/72.4), Bobby Grich (46.4/71.1), Scott Rolen (43.7/70.2), Carlos Beltran (44.4/69.8), *Edgar Martinez (43.7/68.4), Kenny Lofton (43.4/68.3), Graig Nettles (42.4/68.0), Ken Boyer (46.3/62.8), Andruw Jones (46.5/62.8), Sal Bando (44.4/61.5), Todd Helton (46.5/61.2), Jim Edmonds (42.6/60.4), Jim Wynn (43.4/55.9), Dick Allen (45.9/55.1), Nomar Garciaparra (43.1/44.2)

* Elected to the HOF since our recommendation.

Pete Rose and Shoeless Joe Jackson are head and shoulders above the pack, so LET THEM IN! But really, all the underlined names deserve to be in the HOF, if our "negative suprises" are going to be included. We left out the "steroid monsters" because that debate is above my pay grade. But it makes absolutely no sense to ban Pete Rose and Shoeless Joe Jackson for gambling, when hall-of-famers like Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker and Rogers Hornsby were caught gambling, as explained here: Why Pete Rose Should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Players with a ton of WAR who may have fallen a bit short of the HOF due to lower peaks may include Johnny Damon (33.0/56.4), Ted Simmons (34.8/50.3), Willie Randolph (36.3/65.9), Bert Campaneris (36.7/53.1), Thurman Munson (37.0/46.1), Ron Cey (37.1/53.8), Dwight Evans (37.3/67.1), Darrell Evans (37.3/58.8), Gary Sheffield (38.0/60.5), Fred Lynn (38.4/50.2), Robin Ventura (38.7/56.1), Sherry Magee (38.7/59.3), Willie Davis (38.9/60.7), John Olerud (39.0/58.2), Minnie Minoso (39.9/50.5), Vada Pinson (40.0/54.3), Buddy Bell (40.5/66.3), Bobby Bonds (41.1/57.9), Keith Hernandez (41.3/60.4), Cesar Cedeno (41.4/52.8), Bobby Abreu (41.6/60.0)

WAR per 700 Plate Appearances

                                                         WAR/
       Name                     PA   WAR     700

1     Babe Ruth         10503   172.0   11.46
2     Mike Trout       5184     71.7     9.80
3     Rogers Hornsby  9259   127.8     9.66
4     Barry Bonds      12511  171.8      9.61
5     Ross Barnes        2506    33.1      9.25
6     Ted Williams       9766  125.3      8.98
7     Willie Mays       12389  154.7      8.74
8     Ty Cobb           12777  159.4      8.73
9     Lou Gehrig         9554   118.4      8.67
10   Mickey Mantle   9848   120.2      8.54
11   Honus Wagner 11518   134.5      8.17
12   Tris Speaker     11679  133.0      7.97
13   Joe Jackson       5559     62.9      7.92
14   Jackie Robinson 5689     63.2      7.78
16   Eddie Collins   11525    126.7     7.70
17   Dan Brouthers   7656      83.7     7.65
18   Joe DiMaggio    7657     83.6      7.64
19   Mike Schmidt    9938   108.3      7.63
20   Alex Rodriguez  9513     99.0      7.28
21   Hank Aaron    13798   141.6      7.18
22   Nap Lajoie     10239    104.2      7.12
23   Stan Musial     12624   127.8      7.09
24   John McGraw   4894     49.3      7.05
25   Arky Vaughan   7605     75.6     6.96
       Albert Pujols 12077     99.9      5.79
 
Ross Barnes played in just 499 games (because of short seasons in baseball's early years). His slash line was .360/.389/.468/.857 with an OPS+ of 168.
Jackie Robinson, Shoeless Joe Jackson and John McGraw had shorter careers.

WAR per 162 Games for Position Players [with peak WAR aka WAR7]

NOTE: Because the HOF requires ten years and an all-star season is five WAR, our total WAR requirement for the HOF is 50 or higher. The peak WAR requirement of 40 was chosen because it's around the average for HOF members. If only total WAR is considered, a player may have just played a lot more games than the average HOFer. If just peak WAR is considered, the player may have been a "flash in the pan." But if we consider both, we know that a player accumulated enough total WAR for at least ten all-star seasons, and that he played at a very high level for at least seven years. Because WAR seems to discriminate against catchers, we have reduced the peak WAR requirement for catchers. Otherwise, only Johnny Bench would be eligible! Thus we think Ted Simmons and Thurman Munson deserve strong consideration for the HOF. We have also made exceptions and adjustments for players who lost prime seasons due to military service.

WAR per 162 Games for Position Players [with peak WAR aka WAR7]

In the table below, the all-time leaders for each position are starred with an asterisk. Active players are bolded and their rankings can still go up or down. Please note that a WAR7 of 56 or higher means that the player in question performed at an MVP level or higher, on average, for at least seven years. Players with high peak WAR but insufficient career WAR are listed in a following section, with notes about some players. This is where you will find most younger active players.

To see this list sorted by peak WAR, please click here: Baseball's All-Time Leaders in WAR7.

10.48 (RF)      Babe Ruth* (New York Yankees) not including pitching WAR [84.7]
9.89 (CF)       Mike Trout* (Los Angeles Angels) and still rising [64.5]
9.22 (LF)        Ted Williams* (Boston Red Sox) adjusted for five years lost to military service (est. 170 WAR, 2986 games) [69.2]
9.10 (2B)        Rogers Hornsby* (St. Louis Cardinals) [73.5]

-------------- Mike Trout is more than a generational player. Around 20,000 men have played major league baseball and he's had the highest career WAR for every age he's reached so far. And incredibly he keeps getting better!

8.83 (LF)        Barry Bonds (San Francisco Giants) obviously inflated by PEDs [72.7]
8.49 (RF)       Mookie Betts (Boston Red Sox) WAR7 estimated at current rate [59.4]
8.47 (CF)       Willie Mays (New York/San Francisco Giants) [73.7]
8.41 (1B)        Lou Gehrig* (New York Yankees) [67.7]
8.06 (CF)       Ty Cobb (Detroit Tigers) [69.2]

-------------- The players above consistently played at an MVP level or higher. Mookie Betts will have trouble hanging with Willie Mays as he ages, but what he has done so far is impressive.

7.79 (CF)       Tris Speaker (Cleveland Indians) [62.4]
7.75 (CF)       Joe DiMaggio (New York Yankees) adjusted for three years lost to military service (est. 101 WAR, 2100 games) [51.2]
7.60 (1B)        Dan Brouthers (Many) [47.2]
7.58 (CF)        Mickey Mantle (New York Yankees) [64.8]
7.58 (SS)        Honus Wagner* (Pittsburgh Pirates) [65.4]
7.36 (RF/LF)  Shoeless Joe Jackson (Chicago White Sox) [52.5]
7.18 (3B)        Mike Schmidt* (Philadelphia Phillies) [58.7]
7.10 (1B)        Hank Greenberg (Detroit Tigers) [47.7]

--------------- Joe DiMaggio lost playing time to military service, then retired early. This list reminds us how spectacular he was when he did play.

6.91 (2B)         Eddie Collins (Chicago White Sox) [64.2]
6.90 (3B)        Josh Donaldson (Oakland Athletics) [41.3]
6.84 (1B/3B)   Roger Connor (New York Giants) [47.0]
6.79 (RF/1B)   Stan Musial (St. Louis Cardinals) [64.1]
6.79 (1B/3B)   Jimmie Foxx (Philadelphia Athletics) [59.5]
6.71 (2B)        Jackie Robinson (Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers) [52.0]
6.70 (RF)        Hank Aaron (Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves) [60.3]
6.58 (SS)        Alex Rodriguez (New York Yankees) [64.3]
6.56 (RF)        Mel Ott (New York Giants) [52.9]
6.51 (3B)        Eddie Mathews (Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves) [54.3]

-------------- The players above so far are the top 25 of all time. We are reminded how very good Jackie Robinson was, breaking the color barrier aside. Needless to say, he was the perfect choice.

6.47 (SS)        Arky Vaughan (Pittsburgh Pirates) [50.6]
6.46 (3B)        Frank Baker (Philadelphia Athletics) [46.8]
6.44 (CF)       Billy Hamilton (Philadelphia Phillies) [42.7]
6.43 (2B)        Nap Lajoie (Cleveland Indians) [60.3]
6.35 (SS)        Lou Boudreau (Cleveland Indians) [58.7]
6.27 (2B)        Joe Gordon (New York Yankees) [45.8]
6.15 (LF)        Ed Delahanty (Philadelphia Phillies) [48.6]
6.04 (1B)        Jeff Bagwell (Houston Astros) [48.3]
6.04 (2B)        Joe Morgan (Cincinnati Reds) [59.3]
6.04 (1B)        Cap Anson (Chicago Cubs) [41.8]
6.00 (RF)        Frank Robinson (Cincinnati Reds) [52.9]

-------------- It's easy to forget how good Joe Gordon was in his prime.

5.97 (LF)        Charlie Keller (New York Yankees) [38.7] exception for military service
5.92 (RF)        Larry Walker (Colorado Rockies) [44.7]
5.90 (1B)        Johnny Mize (St. Louis Cardinals) [48.8]
5.87 (3B)        Wade Boggs (Boston Red Sox) [56.4]
5.81 (RF)        Elmer Flick (Cleveland Indians) [41.3]
5.76 (SS)        George Davis (New York Giants) [44.4]
5.76 (1B)        Joey Votto (Cincinnati Reds) [46.1]
5.75 (SS)        Jim Glasscock (Cleveland Blues) [41.0]
5.74 (2B)        Bobby Grich (California Angels) [46.4]
5.65 (2B)        Chase Utley (Philadelphia Phillies) [49.3]
5.62 (C)          Johnny Bench* (Cincinnati Reds) [47.1]
5.61 (1B)        Albert Pujols (St. Louis Cardinals) [61.7]
5.60 (3B)        Evan Longoria (Tampa Bay Rays) [40.9]
5.59 (LF)        Rickey Henderson (Oakland Athletics) [57.6]
5.58 (3B)        Scott Rolen (Philadelphia Phillies) [43.7]
5.52 (C)          Buster Posey (San Francisco Giants) [37.1]

--------------- We believe WAR undervalues catchers and in our opinion Johnny Bench is a top 25 player.

5.48 (3B)        Chipper Jones (Atlanta Braves) [46.8]
5.48 (2B)        Charlie Gehringer (Detroit Tigers) [50.5]
5.44 (3B)        Dick Allen (Philadelphia Phillies) [45.9]
5.40 (CF)       Larry Doby (Cleveland Indians) exception for racial discrimination [39.6]
5.40 (C)         Mike Piazza (New York Mets) [43.1]
5.38 (2B)        Robinson Cano (Seattle Mariners) [50.5]
5.38 (1B)        Mark McGwire (Oakland Athletics) [41.9]
5.37 (1B)       Bill Terry (New York Giants) [41.2]
5.37 (RF)       Roberto Clemente (Pittsburgh Pirates) [54.2]
5.33 (2B)       Rod Carew (Minnesota Twins) [49.8]
5.32 (3B)       Adrian Beltre (Texas Rangers) [49.3]
5.30 (C)         Mickey Cochrane (Philadelphia Athletics) [36.9]
5.27 (2B)       Ian Kinsler (Texas Rangers) [40.4]
5.26 (CF)       Kenny Lofton (Cleveland Indians) [43.4]
5.25 (C)         Thurman Munson (New York Yankees) [37.0]
5.24 (2B)       Frankie Frisch (St. Louis Cardinals) [44.4]
5.24 (LF)       Ralph Kiner (Pittsburgh Pirates) [43.7]
5.23 (SS)       Barry Larkin (Cincinnati Reds) [43.1]
5.23 (2B)       Dustin Pedroia (Boston Red Sox) [42.4]
5.20 (CF)       Jim Edmonds (St. Louis Cardinals) [42.6]
5.20 (RF)       Harry Heilmann (Detroit Tigers) [47.2]
5.18 (SS)       Cal Ripken Jr. (Baltimore Orioles) [56.3]
5.16 (3B/DH) Edgar Martinez (Seattle Mariners) [43.7]
5.16 (3B)       David Wright (New York Mets) [40.2]
5.12 (3B)       Ron Santo (Chicago Cubs) [53.8]
5.09 (2B)       Ryne Sandburg (Chicago Cubs) [57.5]
5.09 (C)         Roy Campanella (Brooklyn Dodgers) [32.8] one of the great catchers was a victim of racial discrimination and injuries
5.08 (CF)       Ken Griffey Jr. (Cincinnati Reds) [54.0]
5.08 (RF)       Al Kaline (Detroit Tigers) [48.9]
5.07 (LF)       Al Simmons (Philadelphia Athletics) [45.8]
5.06 (3B)       George Brett (Kansas City Royals) [53.2]
5.06 (SS)       Joe Cronin (Boston Red Sox) [43.9]
5.03 (1B/DH) Frank Thomas (Chicago White Sox) [45.2]
5.01 (CF)       Duke Snider (Brooklyn Dodgers) [49.9]
5.00 (3B)       Ken Boyer (St. Louis Cardinals) [46.3]
5.00 (SS)      Allen Trammell (Detroit Tigers) [44.8]
5.00 (RF)      Bobby Bonds (San Francisco Giants) [41.1]
5.00 (SS)      Nomar Garciaparra (Boston Red Sox) [43.1]

Players whose WAR7 suggests they belong on the list above:

4.99 (SS)      Bill Dahlen (Chicago Cubs) [40.2]
4.98 (SS)      Luke Appling (Chicago White Sox) [43.8]
4.96 (1B)      Miguel Cabrera (Detroit Tigers) [44.7]
4.94 (C)        Gary Carter (Montreal Expos) [48.2]
4.94 (3B)      Sal Bando (Oakland Athletics) [44.4]
4.93 (C)        Joe Mauer (Minnesota Twins) [39.0]
4.88 (LF)      Manny Ramirez (Boston Red Sox) [40.0]
4.84 (SS)      Ozzie Smith (St. Louis Cardinals) [42.5]
4.84 (RF)      Sam Crawford (Detroit Tigers) [39.7]
4.73 (CF)      Richie Ashburn (Philadelphia Phillies) [44.5]
4.72 (CF)     Jim Wynn (Houston Astros) [43.4]
4.72 (LF)      Carl Yastrzemski (Boston Red Sox) [55.5] his peak was ultra-high, but longevity hurt some of his stats
4.68 (LF)      Goose Goslin (Washington Senators) [43.2]
4.68 (1B)      Keith Hernandez (New York Mets) [41.3]
4.64 (1B)      Jim Thome (Cleveland Indians) [41.5]
4.63 (CF)      Andruw Jones (Atlanta Braves) [46.5]
4.63 (RF)     Paul Waner (Pittsburg Pirates) [42.2]
4.59 (RF)     Tony Gwynn (San Diego Padres) [41.3]
4.57 (2B)      Roberto Alomar (Toronto Blue Jays) [42.9]
4.57 (3B)      Paul Molitor (Milwaukee Brewers) [39.7]
4.54 (LF)      Joe Medwick (St. Louis Cardinals) [39.7]
4.54 (C)        Yogi Berra (New York Yankees) [37.0]
4.49 (LF)      Tim Raines (Montreal Expos) [42.4]
4.46 (LF/3B) Minnie Minoso (Chicago White Sox) [40.0]
4.39 (SS)      Robin Yount (Milwaukee Brewers) [47.3]
4.39 (3B)      Brooks Robinson (Baltimore Orioles) [45.7]
4.37 (1B)      Todd Helton (Colorado Rockies) [46.5]
4.32 (SS/1B) Ernie Banks (Chicago Cubs) [51.9] in his prime he was elite, the first of the major home-run crushers at shortstop
4.25 (1B)      George Sisler (St. Louis Browns) [47.0]
4.25 (RF)      Reggie Jackson (Oakland Athletics] [46.8]
4.04 (1B)      Willie McCovey (San Francisco Giants) [44.9]
3.63 (*)        Pete Rose (Cincinnati Reds) [44.9] extreme longevity hurt some of his stats but WAR7 confirms that in his prime Rose was comparable to Al Simmons, Goose Goslin, Miguel Cabrera, Willie McCovey

Players with high WAR averages who fell a bit short on WAR7, meaning they didn't sustain the highest level of play for at least seven years, using a cut-off of ~ 40 WAR7 except for catchers:

7.52 (RF)        Aaron Judge (New York Yankees) [16.3] a very promising start but a very small sample size
6.21 (OF/1B) Cody Bellinger (Los Angeles Dodgers) [15.5]
6.06 (3B)        Kris Bryant (Chicago Cubs) [24.9]
5.96 (3B)       Nolan Arenado (Colorado Rockies) [36.3]
5.91 (OF)      Christian Yelich (Milwaukee Brewers) [32.6]

5.88 (SS)       Andrelton Simmons (Los Angeles Angels) [34.8]
5.80 (CF)      Lorenzo Cain (Kansas City Royals) [32.8]

5.78 (3B)       Manny Machado (Baltimore Orioles) [35.3]
5.71 (1B)       Paul Goldschmidt (Arizona Diamondbacks) [39.9]
5.59 (RF)      Giancarlo Stanton (New York Yankees) [34.4]

5.46 (3B)       Al Rosen (Cleveland Indians) [33.3]
5.39 (CF)       Lenny Dykstra (Philadelphia Phillies) [33.0] his playing time was limited by injuries and a wild lifestyle
5.34 (LF)       Fred Clarke (Pittsburgh Pirates) [36.2]
5.27 (RF)       Reggie Smith (Boston Red Sox) [38.7]
5.12 (CF)      Wally Berger (Boston Braves) [35.8]
5.09 (2B)       Lou Whitaker (Detroit Tigers) [37.9]
5.06 (CF)      Hack Wilson (Chicago Cubs) [35.8]
5.05 (C)        Bill Dickey (New York Yankees) [34.2]
5.04 (SS)      Joe Tinker (Chicago Cubs) [32.9]
5.03 (2B)      Jose Altuve (Houston Astros) [35.5]
4.98 (LF)      Bob Johnson (Philadelphia Athletics) [36.0]
4.85 (2B)      Willie Randolph (New York Yankees) [36.3]
4.78 (LF)      Ryan Braun (Milwaukee Brewers) [39.2]
4.64 (CF)     Kirby Puckett (Minnesota Twins) [37.6]
4.63 (1B)      Will Clark (San Francisco Giants) [36.1]
4.62 (2B)      Billy Herman (Chicago Cubs) [35.5]
4.57 (1B)      Freddie Freeman (Atlanta Braves) [32.9]
4.53 (OF)     Bryce Harper (Washington Nationals) [27.9]
4.53 (CF)     Chet Lemon (Chicago White Sox) [37.2]
4.50 (CF)     Andrew McCutchen (Pittsburg Pirates) [37.4]
4.49 (LF)      Lance Berkman (Houston Astros) [39.3]
4.48 (RF)      Vladimir Guerrero (Montreal Expos) [41.2]
4.46 (3B)      Buddy Bell (Cleveland Indians) [40.5]
4.44 (C)        Carlton Fisk (Boston Red Sox) [37.6]
4.37 (CF)      Carlos Beltran (Kansas City Royals) [44.4]
4.37 (3B)      Robin Ventura (Chicago White Sox) [38.7]
4.37 (C)       Ivan Rodriguez (Texas Rangers) [39.8]
4.27 (SS)      Derek Jeter (New York Yankees) [41.8]
4.26 (CF)     Cesar Cedeno (Houston Astros) [41.4]
4.22 (1B)      John Olerud (Toronto Blue Jays) [39.0]
4.20 (3B)      Ron Cey (Los Angeles Dodgers) [37.1]
4.17 (RF)     Tony Oliva (Minnesota Twins) [38.6]
4.17 (RF)      Dwight Evans (Boston Red Sox) [37.3]
4.15 (LF)      Billy Williams (Chicago Cubs) [41.4]
4.13 (CF)     Fred Lynn (Boston Red Sox) [38.4]
4.11 (1B)      Rafael Palmeiro (Baltimore Orioles) [38.9]
4.08 (3B)      Graig Nettles (Cleveland Indians) [42.4]
4.05 (CF)     Willie Davis (Los Angeles Dodgers) [38.9]
4.03 (RF)      Sammy Sosa (Chicago Cubs) [43.8]
4.00 (CF)     Andre Dawson (Montreal Expos) [42.7]
4.00 (RF)      Bobby Abreu (Philadelphia Phillies) [41.6]
3.94 (LF)      Willie Stargell (Pittsburg Pirates) [38.0]
3.91 (2B)      Jeff Kent (San Francisco Giants) [35.7]
3.83 (1B)      Orlando Cepeda (San Francisco Giants) [34.6]
3.81 (RF)      Gary Sheffield (*) [38.0]
3.76 (RF)      Enos Slaughter (St. Louis Cardinals) [35.2]
3.75 (LF)      Jose Cruz (Houston Astros) [36.3]
3.72 (1B)      David Ortiz (Boston Red Sox) [35.2]
3.72 (2B)      Craig Biggio (Houston Astros) [41.8]
3.67 (CF)      Johnny Damon (Boston Red Sox) [33.0]
3.67 (1B/DH) Eddie Murray (Baltimore Orioles) [39.1]
3.62 (LF)      George Foster (Cincinnati Reds) [36.9]
3.62 (RF)      Ichiro Suzuki (Seattle Mariners) [43.7]
3.56 (CF)      Vada Pinson (Cincinnati Reds) [40.0]
3.55 (3B)       Darrell Evans (Atlanta Braves) [37.3]
3.50 (RF)      Dave Winfield (San Diego Padres) [37.9]
3.46 (CF)      Dale Murphy (Atlanta Braves) [41.2]
3.15 (1B)      Tony Perez (Cincinnati Reds) [36.5]
3.09 (1B)      Boog Powell (Baltimore Orioles) [30.9]
3.08 (C)        Manny Sanguillen (Pittsburg Pirates) [26.4]
3.05 (1B)      Ted Kluszewski (Cincinnati Reds) [29.2]
2.99 (CF)      Al Oliver (Pittsburg Pirates) [28.1]
2.91 (1B)      George Scott (Boston Red Sox) [30.3]
2.87 (1B)      Jim Bottomley (St. Louis Cardinals) [28.8]
2.85 (1B)      Wally Joyner (California Angels) [23.6]
2.75 (1B)      Joe Adcock (Milwaukee Braves) [23.7]
2.73 (2B)      Bill Mazeroski (Pittsburg Pirates) [26.0]
2.72 (C)        Elston Howard (New York Yankees) [26.4]
2.65 (1B)      Steve Garvey (Los Angeles Dodgers) [28.8]
2.63 (RF)      Dave Parker (Pittsburg Pirates) [37.4]
2.52 (CF)      Willie McGee (St. Louis Cardinals) [28.7]
2.51 (RF)      Rusty Staub (Montreal Expos) [33.3]
2.22 (DH)     Harold Baines (Kansas City Royals) [21.4]

NOTE: Anything below two WAR per season would be below average for a major league baseball starter.

WAR7

WAR7 is the sum of a player's seven highest WAR seasons.

       Player                 WAR7

1     Babe Ruth              84.7
(e)   Mike Trout          75.2  Estimated by 2022 or later
2     Willie Mays            73.7
3     Rogers Hornsby     73.5
4     Barry Bonds          72.7
5     Ted Williams          69.2
6     Ty Cobb                69.0
7     Lou Gehrig             67.7
8     Honus Wagner       65.4
9     Mickey Mantle       64.7
10    Stan Musial           64.2
11    Eddie Collins         64.2
12    Alex Rodriguez     64.2
        Mike Trout         63.8 Actual, but bound to rise (see estimate)
13    Tris Speaker         62.1
14    Albert Pujols         61.6
15    Nap Lajoie            60.3
16    Hank Aaron          60.1
17    Jimmie Foxx          59.5
18    Joe Morgan           59.2
19    Mike Schmidt        58.5
20    Rickey Henderson 57.4
21    Wade Boggs         56.2
22    Cal Ripken            56.1
23    Carl Yastrzemski   55.5
24   Eddie Matthews     54.5
25   Roberto Clemente  54.2

cWAR5

WAR5 works like WAR7 and helps us find the very highest extended peaks. In this case we are looking at consecutive years, so let's use the term cWAR5. Who were the players who were consistently the greatest for five years running?

1     Babe Ruth (1920-1924) 56.9 WAR
2     Willie Mays (1962-1966) 52.3 WAR
3     Barry Bonds (2000-2004) 51.1 WAR
4     Roger Hornsby (1921-1925) 49.9 WAR
5     Mike Trout (2012-2016) 47.8 WAR
6     Mickey Mantle (1954-1958) 47.7 WAR
7     Joe Morgan (1972-1976) 47.7 WAR
8     Lou Gehrig (1927-1931) 47.2 WAR
9     Stan Musial (1948-1952) 44.7 WAR
10   Albert Pujols (2005-2009) 44.5 WAR
11   Hank Aaron (1959-1963) 43.6 WAR
12   Carl Yastrzemski (1966-1970) 43.4 WAR
13   Alex Rodriguez (2000-2004) 43.4 WAR
14   Jimmie Foxx (1932-1936) 42.9 WAR
15   Ted Williams (1946-1950) 42.3 WAR
16   Jackie Robinson (1949-1953) 42.2 WAR
17   Wade Boggs (1985-1989) 42.0 WAR
18   Ron Santo (1963-1967) 41.9 WAR
19   Mike Schmidt (1974-1978) 40.3 WAR
20   Roberto Clemente (1965-1969) 39.8 WAR

According to cWAR5, Mike Trout has already had one of the five highest peaks in baseball history. But if he hadn't been injured in 2017, and had performed as consistently as he always does, he would be in third place, above a steroid-infused Bobby Bonds. This list also demonstrates how very good Joe Morgan, Jackie Robinson, Wade Boggs, Ron Santo and Roberto Clemente were. We don't always hear their names mentioned with the Musials and Aarons, but they deserve their day in the sun. According to cWAR5, they were top 20 players in their primes. And in his prime, Joe Morgan was comparable to Mickey Mantle and Lou Gehrig.

Related Pages: The Greatest Baseball Team of All Time, The Greatest Baseball Infields of All Time, Is Mike Trout the GOAT?, Best Baseball Nicknames, Weird Baseball Facts and Trivia, All-Time Cincinnati Reds Baseball Team, Cincinnati Reds Trivia, Baseball's All-Time Leaders in WAR7, Baseball's All-Time Leaders in WAR5, Baseball's All-Time Leaders in WAR per Plate Appearance, Baseball's 100 WAR Leaders, Baseball Hall of Fame: The Best Candidates, Why Pete Rose Should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame, Baseball Timeline

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