Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
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2013 Season

The 2013 Season as seen through the Prism of Player Won-Lost Records

This article takes a look at the 2013 season as measured by Player won-lost records.

The Best of 2013

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
1Chris Davis20.713.06.9
8.6
1Chris Davis20.713.06.9
8.6
2Max Scherzer14.17.96.6
8.0
2Miguel Cabrera21.515.06.4
8.2
3Miguel Cabrera21.515.06.4
8.2
3Matt Carpenter23.417.06.1
8.2
4Clayton Kershaw15.610.86.3
7.8
4Shin-Soo Choo23.817.06.1
8.1
5Paul Goldschmidt22.515.06.2
8.0
5Paul Goldschmidt22.515.06.2
8.0
6Matt Carpenter23.417.06.1
8.2
6Max Scherzer14.17.96.6
8.0
7Shin-Soo Choo23.817.06.1
8.1
7Andrew McCutchen23.817.25.8
7.9
8Andrew McCutchen23.817.25.8
7.9
8Clayton Kershaw15.610.86.3
7.8
9Zack Greinke13.58.85.7
6.9
9Josh Donaldson20.314.85.4
7.2
10Josh Donaldson20.314.85.4
7.2
10Jay Bruce24.918.94.7
6.9


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
1Mike Trout21.915.46.1
8.0
1Mike Trout21.915.46.1
8.0
2Chris Davis20.113.65.8
7.5
2Shin-Soo Choo23.617.25.6
7.7
3Shin-Soo Choo23.617.25.6
7.7
3Andrew McCutchen23.717.35.6
7.6
4Clayton Kershaw15.311.15.6
7.0
4Chris Davis20.113.65.8
7.5
5Andrew McCutchen23.717.35.6
7.6
5Miguel Cabrera20.815.75.3
7.1
6Max Scherzer13.68.45.5
6.9
6Clayton Kershaw15.311.15.6
7.0
7Miguel Cabrera20.815.75.3
7.1
7Max Scherzer13.68.45.5
6.9
8Paul Goldschmidt21.915.64.9
6.7
8Paul Goldschmidt21.915.64.9
6.7
9Matt Harvey11.17.44.7
5.8
9Matt Carpenter22.717.84.6
6.6
10Matt Carpenter22.717.84.6
6.6
10Josh Donaldson19.715.44.2
6.0


I take a look at some of the most interesting players of 2013 at the end of this article.

2013 Postseason

The 2013 postseason began with the Pittsburgh Pirates making their first postseason appearance in 21 seasons and ended with a rematch of the 2004 World Series and the Boston Red Sox third World Series win in 10 seasons.

2013 Postseason: Total
Player Team pWins pLosses pWORL
David OrtizBOS2.41.01.7
Carlos BeltranSLN3.01.41.6
Michael WachaSLN2.71.61.5
Jonny GomesBOS2.41.11.4
Jon LesterBOS2.21.41.1
Shane VictorinoBOS2.51.51.1
Clayton KershawLAN2.01.41.0
John LackeyBOS1.91.11.0
Jacoby EllsburyBOS2.51.80.9
Adam WainwrightSLN2.31.90.9


Top postseason players by round were as follows.

2013 World Series
Player Team pWins pLosses Net Wins
David OrtizBOS1.10.20.8
Jon LesterBOS1.20.50.7
Jonny GomesBOS1.10.60.5
David RossBOS0.60.30.3
Shane VictorinoBOS0.90.60.3

2013 Postseason: League Championship Series
Player Team pWins pLosses Net Wins
Michael WachaSLN1.30.40.9
Carlos BeltranSLN1.30.60.8
Koji UeharaBOS0.80.10.7
Jonny GomesBOS0.80.30.5
Hyun-jin RyuLAN0.60.20.4

2013 Postseason: Division Series
Player Team pWins pLosses Net Wins
Carlos BeltranSLN1.10.30.8
Adam WainwrightSLN1.10.40.7
Pedro AlvarezPIT1.00.40.6
Juan UribeLAN1.00.40.6
Shane VictorinoBOS0.80.20.5

2013 Postseason: Wild Card Round
Player Team pWins pLosses Net Wins
Alex CobbTBA0.70.40.3
Marlon ByrdNYN0.30.10.2
Desmond JenningsTBA0.30.00.2


Best of 2013 by Factor and Position

Next, let's look at the top players in various aspects of the game.
Best by Factor: Batting, Baserunning, Pitching, Fielding
There are four basic factors for which players earn Player won-lost records: Batting, Baserunning, Pitching, and Fielding. The top players in 2013 in wins over positional average (WOPA) by factor were as follows.

Batting
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLoss eWOPA Player pWins pLoss pWOPA
1Miguel Cabrera17.311.0
6.3
1Miguel Cabrera18.010.27.7
2Chris Davis17.210.9
6.2
2Chris Davis17.910.27.6
3Mike Trout14.99.6
5.3
3Paul Goldschmidt18.111.36.4
4Paul Goldschmidt17.411.9
5.1
4Freddie Freeman16.210.45.4
5Joey Votto15.811.1
4.4
5Matt Holliday15.69.95.3
6Andrew McCutchen15.210.9
3.9
6Robinson Cano16.812.24.5
7Freddie Freeman15.411.1
3.9
7David Ortiz14.39.84.5
8Shin-Soo Choo14.09.8
3.8
8Josh Donaldson14.710.24.5
9Edwin Encarnacion14.510.7
3.8
9Ryan Zimmerman14.810.14.3
10Jayson Werth13.39.3
3.7
10Matt Carpenter15.510.94.2
Positional Average excludes pitcher offense
Baserunning
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLoss eWOPA Player pWins pLoss pWOPA
1Jacoby Ellsbury2.11.0
1.1
1Elvis Andrus2.71.11.6
2Rajai Davis1.70.6
1.0
2Jacoby Ellsbury2.01.10.9
3Elvis Andrus2.41.4
1.0
3Rajai Davis1.60.70.9
4Alexis Rios1.70.9
0.8
4Andrew McCutchen2.01.20.8
5Andrew McCutchen2.01.2
0.8
5Brett Gardner1.70.90.8
6Jarrod Dyson1.10.3
0.7
6Craig Gentry1.20.40.8
7Will Venable1.40.6
0.7
7Alcides Escobar1.40.60.8
8Craig Gentry1.10.4
0.7
8Ichiro Suzuki1.60.80.7
9Daniel Murphy1.91.2
0.6
9Starling Marte2.11.40.7
10Ichiro Suzuki1.50.9
0.6
10Jarrod Dyson1.00.30.7
Positional Average excludes pitcher offense
Pitching
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLoss Net eWins Player pWins pLoss Net pWins
1Max Scherzer12.88.6
4.2
1Max Scherzer13.87.56.3
2Matt Harvey10.06.2
3.8
2Clayton Kershaw13.38.44.9
3Clayton Kershaw12.79.0
3.7
3Greg Holland7.63.14.5
4Anibal Sanchez11.37.9
3.4
4Jose D. Fernandez10.96.54.4
5Jose D. Fernandez10.37.1
3.2
5Clay Buchholz7.43.53.9
6Greg Holland6.83.9
2.8
6Zack Greinke11.17.43.7
7Koji Uehara4.61.9
2.7
7Mark Melancon6.73.13.6
8Cliff P. Lee13.310.6
2.6
8Koji Uehara5.11.43.6
9Doug Fister11.89.3
2.5
9Craig Kimbrel7.03.63.3
10Clay Buchholz6.74.2
2.4
10Joe Nathan6.12.73.3


Fielding by Position


Fielding, P
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Francisco Liriano0.80.4
0.4
1Francisco Liriano0.80.40.4
2Todd Redmond0.40.1
0.4
2Zack Greinke0.50.10.4
3Kyle Kendrick0.50.1
0.4
3Kyle Kendrick0.50.10.3
4Mike Leake0.50.1
0.3
4Jeremy Guthrie0.50.10.3
5Andrew Cashner0.40.1
0.3
5Luke Gregerson0.40.10.3


Fielding, C
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Yadier Molina1.81.2
0.6
1Yadier Molina1.91.20.7
2Yan Gomes1.40.9
0.6
2Yan Gomes1.50.80.6
3Matt Wieters1.71.2
0.5
3Matt Wieters1.71.10.6
4Russ Martin1.91.4
0.4
4A.J. Ellis1.30.90.4
5Welington Castillo1.61.2
0.4
5Salvador Perez1.51.10.4


Fielding, 1B
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Eric Hosmer2.92.1
0.8
1Nick Swisher2.41.50.9
2Paul Goldschmidt3.22.8
0.4
2Allen Craig1.81.20.6
3Mike Napoli1.71.4
0.3
3Paul Goldschmidt3.32.80.5
4Matt Adams1.00.8
0.2
4Joey Votto2.92.50.5
5Logan Morrison1.41.2
0.2
5Eric Hosmer2.72.30.4


Fielding, 2B
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Dustin Pedroia5.84.8
1.1
1Ian Kinsler5.23.71.5
2Ian Kinsler4.94.1
0.8
2Dustin Pedroia5.94.61.3
3Danny Espinosa1.81.3
0.5
3Matt Carpenter5.34.31.0
4DJ LeMahieu3.73.2
0.5
4Mark Ellis4.43.70.8
5Ben Zobrist4.33.8
0.5
5Chris Getz2.82.10.6


Fielding, 3B
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Manny Machado5.33.8
1.5
1Juan Uribe4.32.22.1
2Juan Uribe3.72.8
0.9
2Manny Machado5.33.81.5
3Matt Dominguez4.94.0
0.9
3Evan Longoria4.93.61.3
4Evan Longoria4.63.9
0.6
4Josh Donaldson4.83.71.1
5Jeff Bianchi1.20.7
0.5
5Luis Valbuena2.61.80.8


Fielding, SS
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Andrelton Simmons7.15.6
1.5
1Andrelton Simmons7.15.71.4
2Brendan Ryan4.43.7
0.7
2Zack Cozart5.94.71.2
3J.J. Hardy5.85.3
0.5
3Yunel Escobar6.65.61.0
4Pete Kozma5.14.6
0.5
4Pete Kozma5.34.31.0
5Everth Cabrera4.13.6
0.5
5J.J. Hardy6.05.20.8


Fielding, LF
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Alex Gordon7.66.3
1.4
1Alex Gordon8.15.82.4
2Logan Schafer2.01.1
0.9
2Yoenis Cespedes4.82.82.0
3Yoenis Cespedes4.13.5
0.5
3Starling Marte4.43.11.3
4Starling Marte4.03.5
0.5
4David Murphy4.83.91.0
5Chris Heisey1.61.2
0.5
5Clete Thomas1.50.70.8


Fielding, CF
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Shin-Soo Choo7.25.7
1.6
1Shin-Soo Choo7.65.32.4
2Juan Lagares4.63.5
1.1
2Andrew McCutchen6.85.01.8
3Carlos Gomez6.25.1
1.1
3Juan Lagares4.73.41.3
4Denard Span6.35.5
0.8
4Denard Span6.55.21.3
5Andrew McCutchen6.25.5
0.7
5Leonys Martin4.73.51.2


Fielding, RF
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses Net eWins Player pWins pLosses Net pWins
1Jay Bruce7.96.2
1.7
1Jay Bruce8.45.72.7
2Norichika Aoki5.94.5
1.4
2Josh Reddick5.93.92.0
3Josh Reddick5.54.3
1.2
3Norichika Aoki6.04.41.7
4Shane Victorino4.73.7
1.0
4Gerardo Parra6.54.91.6
5Gerardo Parra6.15.4
0.8
5Shane Victorino4.93.51.4


Best by Position
Next, we look at 2013 Major-League leaders by position. The figures shown here only include Player decisions earned while playing this particular position.

Catcher
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Yadier Molina14.812.2
2.8
1Yadier Molina15.711.34.6
2Jason Castro10.28.8
1.8
2Derek Norris8.25.43.1
3Joe Mauer7.76.2
1.7
3Brian McCann10.87.93.0
4Jarrod Saltalamacchia10.08.9
1.4
4Alex Avila9.47.91.9
5Yan Gomes7.76.6
1.4
5Carlos Santana7.86.51.6


First Base
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Chris Davis18.813.3
4.6
1Paul Goldschmidt22.514.96.2
2Paul Goldschmidt21.715.7
4.5
2Chris Davis19.312.85.6
3Freddie Freeman19.214.5
3.3
3Freddie Freeman20.013.65.1
4Joey Votto19.715.3
3.0
4Mike Napoli15.010.83.5
5Prince Fielder17.915.6
1.3
5Joey Votto19.915.13.4


Second Base
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Robinson Cano22.219.0
3.4
1Robinson Cano23.018.25.1
2Matt Carpenter18.214.8
3.4
2Matt Carpenter18.814.24.5
3Ian Kinsler17.915.2
2.8
3Ian Kinsler18.314.83.8
4Jason Kipnis19.617.3
2.6
4Jason Kipnis20.216.73.7
5Dustin Pedroia20.818.8
2.3
5Dustin Pedroia21.518.23.6


Third Base
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Miguel Cabrera20.715.6
5.0
1Miguel Cabrera21.414.96.4
2Josh Donaldson19.315.4
3.8
2Josh Donaldson20.014.75.2
3Adrian Beltre18.615.5
3.1
3Juan Uribe14.39.64.4
4Evan Longoria18.815.8
2.9
4Evan Longoria19.415.34.1
5David Wright15.612.5
2.7
5Ryan Zimmerman19.315.33.6


Shortstop
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Hanley Ramirez12.19.2
3.2
1Hanley Ramirez12.78.64.3
2Troy Tulowitzki16.814.0
3.1
2Jhonny Peralta14.311.83.0
3Andrelton Simmons20.819.2
2.1
3Andrelton Simmons21.118.92.8
4Everth Cabrera13.211.8
1.8
4Everth Cabrera13.611.42.5
5Ian Desmond21.320.2
1.7
5Stephen Drew15.513.82.4


Left Field
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Matt Holliday19.416.1
2.6
1Matt Holliday20.416.14.7
2Carlos Gonzalez15.212.6
2.1
2Yoenis Cespedes14.511.54.6
3Alex Gordon21.819.4
2.1
3Starling Marte17.013.74.2
4Justin Upton13.310.8
2.0
4Bryce Harper13.811.12.7
5Bryce Harper13.411.1
1.9
5Carlos Gonzalez15.412.62.6


Center Field
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Andrew McCutchen23.417.5
5.2
1Shin-Soo Choo23.416.85.9
2Shin-Soo Choo23.017.2
5.1
2Andrew McCutchen23.717.15.8
3Mike Trout15.610.8
4.6
3Adam Jones22.918.93.6
4Carlos Gomez20.516.7
3.2
4Coco Crisp15.011.53.1
5Coco Crisp14.611.9
2.3
5Mike Trout14.711.72.7


Right Field
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Jay Bruce24.319.5
3.4
1Jay Bruce24.918.94.7
2Jayson Werth18.414.7
2.6
2Yasiel Puig13.39.63.0
3Jose 'Joey Bats' Bautista15.012.0
2.4
3Shane Victorino15.512.22.7
4Marlon Byrd20.217.0
2.1
4Jose 'Joey Bats' Bautista15.012.12.3
5Shane Victorino15.112.6
1.9
5Josh Reddick14.612.02.1


Starting Pitcher
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Max Scherzer13.08.9
4.4
1Max Scherzer14.07.86.5
2Matt Harvey10.26.3
4.1
2Clayton Kershaw13.68.65.3
3Clayton Kershaw13.09.3
4.0
3Jose D. Fernandez11.06.64.7
4Anibal Sanchez11.58.2
3.5
4Zack Greinke11.67.64.3
5Jose D. Fernandez10.47.2
3.5
5Clay Buchholz7.53.64.2
6Cliff P. Lee13.510.8
3.0
6Adam Wainwright14.110.73.7
7Chris Sale13.811.4
2.7
7Hisashi Iwakuma12.08.93.4
8Justin Masterson12.810.4
2.7
8Bartolo Colon12.39.33.3
9Adam Wainwright13.611.2
2.6
9Matt Harvey9.86.73.3
10Doug Fister12.09.7
2.6
10Jordan Zimmermann14.011.13.3


Relief Pitcher
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Greg Holland6.83.9
2.6
1Greg Holland7.73.14.3
2Koji Uehara4.72.0
2.5
2Koji Uehara5.11.53.4
3Mark Melancon6.13.8
2.1
3Mark Melancon6.83.13.4
4Craig Kimbrel6.54.2
2.0
4Joe Nathan6.32.83.3
5Steve Cishek5.93.8
1.9
5Ernesto Frieri8.04.53.2
6Joe Nathan5.53.6
1.7
6Mariano Rivera7.13.73.1
7Mariano Rivera6.44.5
1.6
7Craig Kimbrel7.03.73.0
8Kenley Jansen5.84.0
1.6
8Casey Janssen5.22.03.0
9Glen Perkins4.63.0
1.4
9Kenley Jansen6.63.33.0
10David Robertson5.13.7
1.3
10Glen Perkins5.32.32.7


Designated Hitter
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1David Ortiz13.710.6
3.1
1David Ortiz14.210.14.2
2Edwin Encarnacion5.74.2
1.5
2Edwin Encarnacion5.84.11.7
3Josh Hamilton4.03.0
1.0
3Josh Hamilton4.32.71.6


Finally, here are the best at three oft-forgotten positions that can nevertheless matter: pitcher offense, pinch hitting, and pinch running.

Pitcher Offense
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Zack Greinke1.61.4
1.0
1Zack Greinke1.91.21.4
2Travis Wood1.21.3
0.6
2Clayton Kershaw2.02.11.0
3Clayton Kershaw1.62.5
0.5
3Mike Minor1.31.30.7


Pinch Hitter
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Evan Gattis1.70.2
1.5
1Evan Gattis1.80.11.7
2Jonny Gomes1.20.5
0.8
2Jesus Guzman2.31.11.2
3Jason Giambi1.10.6
0.6
3Jonny Gomes1.40.31.1


Pinch Runner
Context-Neutral Context-Dependent
Player eWins eLosses eWOPA Player pWins pLosses pWOPA
1Billy Hamilton0.30.0
0.3
1Billy Hamilton0.40.00.4
2Josh Rutledge0.20.0
0.2
2Jarrod Dyson0.30.00.2
3Reymond Fuentes0.20.0
0.2
3Doug Bernier0.20.00.1


Noteworthy Players of 2013

Cabrera vs. Trout: Again
For the second year in a row, the top two finishers in the American League MVP voting were Miguel Cabrera and Mike Trout. In 2012, there was very little question about which of Trout or Cabrera was better by most sabermetric stats (including Player won-lost records). In 2013, on the other hand, the debate between Trout and Cabrera is somewhat more interesting. Specifically, it boils down to this: how much does context matter in determining player value?

The next table compares Miguel Cabrera's and Mike Trout's seasons, in and out of context.

Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
Miguel Cabrera
147
21.515.00.5896.4
8.2
20.815.70.5705.37.1
Mike Trout
157
20.916.40.5604.1
6.0
21.915.40.5876.18.0


Mike Trout's 2013 performance translated into 2.0 fewer actual wins than expected. Miguel Cabrera's 2013 performance translated into 1.1 more actual wins than expected.

Part of this was because Trout's teammates were not as good as Cabrera's teammates, and so Trout had fewer opportunities to contribute to wins. But much of the difference was based on how the two of them performed in the most win-important situations.

In tie games, Mike Trout batted .301/.389/.593 with 32 RBI in 244 PAs. In games where the score margin was more than four runs (in either team's favor), Trout batted .466/.547/.863 with 24 RBI in 86 PAs. Trout's OPS by leverage in low-medium-high leverage went 1.055-1.035-.713; Trout batted .257/.386/.327 in 132 high-leverage plate appareances with only one home run.

In tie games, Miguel Cabrera batted .364/.462/.695 with 43 RBI in 223 PAs. In games where the score margin was more than four runs, Cabrera batted .250/.304/.375. Cabrera's OPS by leverage in low-medium-high leverage went .968-1.161-1.188; Cabrera batted .323/.459/.729 in 122 high-leverage plate appearances with 11 home runs.
I'm not suggesting that these splits are predictive of other seasons or necessarily reflect a talent of either player. But, in 2013, they really happened, and they contributed to real wins by the Detroit Tigers who could have missed the playoffs had they won as little as two fewer games. Based on that, Miguel Cabrera would have probably placed higher than Mike Trout on my 2013 AL MVP ballot.

But Wait, There's One More AL MVP Candidate: Chris Davis
Miguel Cabrera was better than Mike Trout in pWins over both positional average and replacement level. But Miguel Cabrera was not the best player in the American League in 2013 in either of those measures. Based on Player won-lost records, the best player in pWOPA and pWORL not only in the American League but in all of major-league baseball was Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis.

I am (re)-writing this article in 2019 when Chris Davis's primary claims to fame are a multi-year contract worth over $100 million and a stretch in 2018-19 over which he went 0-for-54. Well, the 2013 season is mostly what earned Davis that $161 million contract. In 2013, Davis batted .286/.370/.634 and led the major leagues in home runs (53), RBI (138), and total bases (370).

The next table presents the career record of Chris Davis to date, as measured by Player won-lost records. The slow start and unfortunate end have unfortunately obscured what really was an excellent prime.

Basic Player Won-Lost Records
Value Decomposition
Season Team Age Games pWins pLosses pWORL pWOPA
2008TEX22
80
7.37.7-0.1-0.8
2009TEX23
113
9.89.70.1-0.8
2010TEX24
45
1.93.0-1.0-1.2
25
59
4.95.6-0.3-0.8
2012BAL26
139
14.512.23.31.8
2013BAL27
160
20.713.08.66.9
2014BAL28
127
14.112.02.71.5
2015BAL29
160
20.115.65.23.4
2016BAL30
157
17.716.02.51.0
2017BAL31
128
10.413.1-2.6-3.7
2018BAL32
128
8.413.6-4.7-5.8
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER (reg. season)
1,296
129.6121.513.71.4
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
PostSeason (career)
7
0.60.8-0.1-0.2
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
2012 - 2016
743
87.068.722.314.6


NL Central Center Fielders: Andrew McCutchen vs. Shin-Soo Choo
Pittsburgh Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen was voted the Most Valuable Player in the National League. Based on the tables shown above, McCutchen wasn't necessarily even the best center fielder in his own division. This is not a knock on Andrew McCutchen so much as this: Player won-lost records really, really, really liked Shin-Soo Choo's 2013 season for the Reds.

The next table compares Andrew McCutchen's and Shin-Soo Choo's 2013 seasons as measured by Player won-lost records.

Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
Andrew McCutchen
157
23.817.20.5805.8
7.9
23.717.30.5785.67.6
Shin-Soo Choo
154
23.817.00.5846.1
8.1
23.617.20.5795.67.7


Unlike Cabrera vs. Trout, this one doesn't really have anything to do with context. To see what it does have to do with, the next table breaks McCutchen's and Choo's (context-neutral, teammate-adjusted) Player won-lost records by factor: batting, baserunning, and fielding.

Batting Baserunning Fielding
Wins Losses WOPA Wins Losses WOPA Wins Losses WOPA
Andrew McCutchen15.210.9
3.9
2.01.2
0.8
6.25.50.7
Shin-Soo Choo14.09.8
3.8
1.91.9
-0.0
7.45.81.6


I think that there are two things that this table reveals. First, Shin-Soo Choo really did have an excellent offensive season in 2013. He was second in the National League in on-base percentage (.423), times on base (300), and runs scored (107). McCutchen had a somewhat higher slugging percentage (.508 to .462), but even in terms of power, Choo matched McCutchen with 21 home runs. McCutchen gained a few runs on Choo for his baserunning, so, overall McCutchen was the better offensive player, but Shin-Soo Choo had an outstanding offensive season in 2013.

Second, and undoubtedly more controversial, the reason why Shin-Soo Choo beats Andrew McCutchen in Player won-lost records is because, according to Player won-lost records, Shin-Soo Choo was one of the best defensive centerfielders in the major leagues. I have to be honest here: Player won-lost records are my baby and I love them, but I have pretty serious doubts about this result. Shin-Soo Choo was a corner outfielder playing out of position. Baseball-Reference shows Choo as -18 defensive runs according to BIS, Fangraphs shows Choo with a -6.3 UZR.

Why am I showing Choo as so much better? The one statistic that Choo has in his favor is that the Reds led the major-leagues in defensive efficiency at .715. They also led the major leagues in Total Zone runs (reported by Baseball-Reference) and, in fact, Choo rated as +17 runs in Total Zone. Fangraphs shows the Reds fifth in MLB based on UZR, while BIS's defensive runs saves (Rdrs on Baseball-Reference) has the Reds a more pedestrian ninth in the major leagues. Player won-lost records, on the other hand, show the Reds as the best fielding team in the majors.

At the team level, I'm more inclined to believe that the team with the best defensive efficiency should have the best fielding statistics. So, certainly, I think that's a point in favor of Player won-lost records' view of the Reds as a team. But whether that translates into Shin-Soo Choo really being the best defensive CF in baseball? I'm skeptical of that one. On the other hand, Choo had 32 more putouts than McCutchen in 16 fewer innings and the Reds allowed 75 fewer hits on balls-in-play than the Pirates. So, you know, maybe Player won-lost records are right here.

If you adjust the above numbers to take away Shin-Soo Choo's fielding edge on Andrew McCutchen, McCutchen moves ahead of Choo in Player wins over either positional average or replacement level.

Last Hurrahs
Finally, 2013 was the final season for two longtime teammates who won five World Series together: Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera.

The next table compares their career records, as measured by Player won-lost records. The numbers in this table include postseason games, since the postseason was such a large part of both of their careers.

Andy Pettitte Mariano Rivera
Season Games pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL Games pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL
1995
3210.89.90.9
2.3
224.24.3-0.10.6
1996
4016.712.64.5
6.5
6910.93.96.98.4
1997
3714.49.05.4
7.0
687.44.42.94.1
1998
3615.113.22.1
4.1
647.62.25.46.3
1999
3413.112.11.1
2.7
747.92.75.16.2
2000
3715.111.73.6
5.4
769.04.44.55.9
2001
3615.412.83.0
4.9
8210.95.05.67.3
2002
239.56.53.2
4.3
465.03.91.01.9
2003
3817.013.34.0
6.0
728.63.05.46.6
2004
155.65.01.0
1.6
8310.64.06.37.7
2005
3715.311.35.1
6.6
738.13.34.65.9
2006
3814.814.61.3
3.0
647.03.43.44.5
2007
3712.611.02.0
3.7
706.64.02.33.5
2008
3312.913.5-0.4
1.4
647.52.64.75.8
2009
3714.811.63.5
5.2
787.43.43.84.9
2010
239.56.92.7
3.7
676.03.42.53.6
2011
 
666.32.83.34.2
2012
144.54.50.1
0.7
90.70.30.40.5
2013
3010.79.91.1
2.4
647.13.73.14.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER RECORDS577227.8189.544.3
71.7
1,211138.964.771.292.3


Article last updated: September 10, 2019

Wins over positional average and replacement level are calculated using data only for the 2019 season. Positional averages for starting pitching and relief pitching are calculated using single-year data for all starting pitchers and all relief pitchers.

All articles are written so that they pull data directly from the most recent version of the Player won-lost database. Hence, any numbers cited within these articles should automatically incorporate the most recent update to Player won-lost records. In some cases, however, the accompanying text may have been written based on previous versions of Player won-lost records. I apologize if this results in non-sensical text in any cases.

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