Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
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Ken Griffey Jr.

2016 Hall of Fame Ballot Series: Ken Griffey Jr.

The first table below presents Ken Griffey Jr.'s career as measured by Player won-lost records.

Ken Griffey Jr.
Basic Player Won-Lost Records
Value Decomposition
Season Team Age Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
1989SEA19
127
14.915.30.493-0.2
0.9
15.514.80.5110.41.4
1990SEA20
155
19.919.00.5110.2
1.6
21.519.40.5260.82.3
1991SEA21
154
20.316.60.5501.8
3.2
20.516.00.5622.33.7
1992SEA22
142
18.016.40.5230.7
2.0
19.316.20.5431.42.7
1993SEA23
156
20.516.70.5511.8
3.4
22.816.30.5843.24.8
1994SEA24
111
15.312.20.5551.5
2.7
16.412.20.5742.13.3
1995SEA25
72
9.58.30.5350.7
1.5
9.08.00.5290.61.3
1996SEA26
140
19.214.80.5652.2
3.6
20.514.60.5842.94.4
1997SEA27
157
21.916.10.5772.9
4.4
22.316.30.5793.04.6
1998SEA28
161
22.819.10.5441.8
3.5
22.717.20.5692.74.3
1999SEA29
160
23.418.20.5632.5
4.2
22.318.40.5481.93.5
2000CIN30
145
20.017.10.5391.1
2.6
19.816.00.5531.63.0
2001CIN31
111
12.712.90.496-0.3
0.8
12.811.60.5260.51.5
2002CIN32
70
6.67.60.462-0.6
-0.0
6.47.00.477-0.40.2
2003CIN33
53
5.45.50.498-0.1
0.4
6.95.30.5660.71.2
2004CIN34
83
11.89.00.5671.3
2.1
10.610.00.5150.21.0
2005CIN35
128
17.617.10.506-0.0
1.2
17.214.90.5360.92.1
2006CIN36
109
14.113.20.5150.2
1.2
13.413.90.489-0.50.5
2007CIN37
144
17.417.70.495-0.7
0.5
18.818.00.511-0.21.1
38
143
16.615.60.5160.1
1.4
15.715.20.508-0.11.1
2009SEA39
117
9.89.40.5120.1
1.1
9.49.10.508-0.01.0
2010SEA40
33
1.72.70.385-0.5
-0.3
1.62.60.379-0.5-0.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER (reg. season)
2,671
339.3300.70.53016.5
42.0
345.5293.10.54123.448.8
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
PostSeason (career)
18
2.22.00.525 0.32.41.90.558 0.4
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
COMBINED
2,689
341.6302.70.530
42.3
347.9295.00.541 49.3


Ken Griffey Jr. was an amazingly talented player through his 20's (i.e., through the 1990s), who was a joy to watch: power, speed, defense.

Through 1999 - Griffey's age 29 season - Griffey had 10 All-Star selections, 10 Gold Gloves, an MVP (in 1997), 4 other top-5 MVP finishes. He led the American League in home runs 4 times, in runs scored and RBI once apiece and had a career batting line of .299/.380/.569 with 398 home runs in 6,688 plate appearances. He was the best centerfielder the major leagues had seen since Willie Mays.

The next table compares the career records of Ken Griffey, Jr., and Willie Mays through their age 29 seasons - 1999 for Griffey and 1960 for Mays. The numbers shown here have been neutralized for context.

Ken Griffey Jr. Willie Mays
Age Games pWins pLoss Win Pct. eWOPA eWORL Games pWins pLoss Win Pct. eWOPA eWORL
19
12715.514.80.5110.4
1.4
20
15521.519.40.5260.8
2.3
12116.514.80.5280.51.8
21
15420.516.00.5622.3
3.7
344.83.70.5690.50.8
22
14219.316.20.5431.4
2.7
23
15622.816.30.5843.2
4.8
15123.516.20.5932.84.4
24
11116.412.20.5742.1
3.3
15226.217.40.6003.55.3
25
729.08.00.5290.6
1.3
15222.616.50.5782.44.0
26
14020.514.60.5842.9
4.4
15224.518.30.5722.34.1
27
15722.316.30.5793.0
4.6
15225.218.70.5742.54.2
28
16122.717.20.5692.7
4.3
15122.716.60.5782.44.0
29
16022.318.40.5481.9
3.5
15323.318.50.5571.63.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
TOTAL (through age 29)1,535212.9169.40.55721.2
36.3
1,218189.3140.60.57418.731.9


Griffey broke into the major leagues one year younger than Mays did (19 vs. 20). In addition, Mays missed almost two full seasons while he served in the military during the Korean War (1952-53). Because of that, Griffey played 317 more games through age 29 than Mays did. And, because of these extra games, Griffey edges past Mays in eWins over both positional average and replacement level.

Given the difference in playing time - and the reason for it - one could certainly make a case that Willie Mays was the better player in his 20's. But, of course, the number of players who can make a credible argument to have been more valuable than Willie Mays over any reasonable time period is extremely small.

2016 Hall of Fame Ballot Series




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