Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
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The 1962 Season as seen through the Prism of Player Won-Lost Records



Next in my continuing series of looking at individual seasons through the prism of Player won-lost records is the 1962 season. The 1962 season saw the National League join the American League in expanding to ten teams and a 162-game schedule. In fact, not only did the National League go to a 162-game schedule in 1962, but the top two teams in the National League - San Francisco and Los Angeles - played 165 games apiece, after ending the first 162 games with identical 101-61 records.

The Best of 1962

I calculate Player won-lost records two ways: pWins, which tie to team wins and eWins, which control for context and the ability of one's teammates. For players with more pWins than eWins, their Player wins contributed to more team wins than one might expect; for players with more eWins than pWins, just the opposite is true: their Player wins translated into fewer team wins than expected. Or more briefly: a player with more pWins than eWins was better in context, a player with more eWins than pWins was worse in context.

The top 10 players in pWins above Positional Average and Replacement Level were as follows.

pWins over Positional Average
Top 10 Players
          pWins over Replacement Level
Top 10 Players
Player pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL           Player pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL
1Willie Mays29.618.35.0
6.8
1Willie Mays29.618.35.0
6.8
2Bob Purkey19.813.04.1
5.6
2Bob Purkey19.813.04.1
5.6
3Mickey Mantle20.311.73.8
5.0
3Maury Wills25.018.93.7
5.3
4Camilo Pascual19.714.13.7
5.2
4Camilo Pascual19.714.13.7
5.2
5Maury Wills25.018.93.7
5.3
5H. Tommy Davis27.519.03.3
5.1
6Ray Herbert17.712.23.5
4.8
6Mickey Mantle20.311.73.8
5.0
7H. Tommy Davis27.519.03.3
5.1
7Ray Herbert17.712.23.5
4.8
8Whitey Ford17.012.13.2
4.5
8Frank Robinson26.718.23.0
4.7
9Don Drysdale19.615.23.1
4.6
9Hank Aaron27.219.72.8
4.6
10Frank Robinson26.718.23.0
4.7
10Don Drysdale19.615.23.1
4.6


The top 10 players in eWins above Positional Average and Replacement Level were as follows.

eWins over Positional Average
Top 10 Players
          eWins over Replacement Level
Top 10 Players
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA eWORL           Player eWins eLosses eWOPA eWORL
1Mickey Mantle18.311.03.1
4.3
1Don Drysdale21.618.42.6
4.4
2Camilo Pascual18.013.92.9
4.3
2Camilo Pascual18.013.92.9
4.3
3Hank Aaron24.217.22.7
4.2
3Mickey Mantle18.311.03.1
4.3
4Don Drysdale21.618.42.6
4.4
4Hank Aaron24.217.22.7
4.2
5Dick Donovan17.113.72.5
3.9
5Willie Mays24.818.72.5
4.2
6Warren Spahn17.814.32.5
3.9
6Frank Robinson25.418.32.3
4.0
7Willie Mays24.818.72.5
4.2
7Warren Spahn17.814.32.5
3.9
8Ray Herbert15.912.62.4
3.7
8Dick Donovan17.113.72.5
3.9
9Frank Robinson25.418.32.3
4.0
9Jim Kaat18.515.82.2
3.7
10Bob Gibson16.012.82.3
3.6
10Ray Herbert15.912.62.4
3.7


Let's take a look at a few of the more interesting players on the above lists.

Willie Mays
The 1962 NL MVP vote was extremely close, coming down to 1 first-place vote and seven overall points. The winner was Dodgers' shortstop Maury Wills who had a fine season, punctuated by an eye-popping major-league record 104 stolen bases.

Based on Player won-lost records, the most valuable player in the National League was almost certainly MVP runner-up Willie Mays. Willie Mays's 1962 season was one of the finest seasons, as measured by Player won-lost record, of any season for which I have calculated Player won-lost records in both raw pWins as well as pWins over replacement level (pWORL). The top 10 seasons in these two stats since 1951 (Willie Mays's rookie season) are shown in the next two tables.

Top 10 Single-Season pWin Totals, since 1951
Player Season pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL
Willie Mays196229.618.35.06.8
Barry Bonds200127.915.15.57.4
Hank Aaron196827.820.12.94.8
Minnie Minoso195427.618.23.95.8
H. Tommy Davis196227.519.03.35.1
Roger Maris196127.215.54.56.5
Carl Yastrzemski196727.217.83.55.5
Hank Aaron196227.219.72.84.6
George Foster197727.219.43.15.0
Kevin Mitchell198927.117.83.75.3

Top 10 Single-Season pWORL Totals, since 1951
Player Season pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL