Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
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Billy Pierce

2015 Veterans' Committee HOF Ballot: Billy Pierce

The Baseball Hall of Fame recently announced their 2015 Veterans' ballot. One player on the ballot is Billy Pierce.

The first table below presents Billy Pierce's career as measured by Player won-lost records.

Billy Pierce
Basic Player Won-Lost Records
Value Decomposition
Season Team Age Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
1945DET18
5
0.10.50.136-0.2
-0.2
0.30.50.381-0.1-0.0
1948DET21
22
2.32.50.472-0.1
0.2
2.83.50.446-0.30.0
1949CHA22
35
10.512.30.459-0.6
0.3
10.711.10.4900.11.0
1950CHA23
34
15.215.10.5010.6
2.0
14.813.10.5301.42.7
1951CHA24
37
16.912.70.5722.6
3.9
15.813.60.5391.62.9
1952CHA25
33
15.513.30.5381.7
3.0
16.412.60.5662.53.8
1953CHA26
40
18.315.40.5432.1
3.6
17.615.20.5371.83.3
1954CHA27
36
12.511.90.5120.8
1.9
12.212.90.4860.11.3
1955CHA28
33
15.910.40.6053.2
4.3
13.410.50.5611.92.8
1956CHA29
36
17.514.80.5422.0
3.4
18.316.50.5261.63.2
1957CHA30
40
18.414.50.5602.8
4.1
16.413.70.5452.13.3
1958CHA31
35
17.214.60.5422.1
3.3
15.715.50.5040.82.1
1959CHA32
34
15.113.50.5281.3
2.5
14.614.50.5030.61.8
1960CHA33
31
12.810.20.5571.8
2.8
12.312.30.5000.61.6
1961CHA34
39
10.99.90.5240.9
1.8
10.710.80.4990.31.3
1962SFN35
30
11.58.60.5742.0
2.9
9.79.00.5200.81.7
1963SFN36
38
6.07.60.440-0.6
0.1
5.26.20.458-0.30.3
1964SFN37
34
2.12.00.5170.0
0.3
2.32.20.5150.00.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER (reg. season)
592
218.8189.80.53622.4
40.2
209.6193.60.52015.633.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
PostSeason (career)
5
1.00.80.541 0.21.21.00.550 0.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
COMBINED
597
219.8190.60.536
40.4
210.8194.60.520 33.5


The bulk of Billy Pierce's career fell within the 1950's. The next table shows the top 10 pitchers of the 1950's, as measured by Player won-lost records, measured by net pitching wins.

Top 10 Pitchers of the 1950's: Pitching Only
eWins eLosses eWinPct Net Wins
1Warren Spahn146.7123.40.54323.3
2Robin Roberts159.3140.00.53219.4
3Billy Pierce128.2111.10.53617.1
4Bob Rush110.194.30.53915.8
5E. Mike Garcia101.687.90.53613.7
6Early Wynn136.5124.40.52312.1
7Curt Simmons85.474.80.53310.6
8Johnny Antonelli90.280.40.5299.8
9Whitey Ford80.171.10.5309.0
10Harvey Haddix85.176.10.5288.9


Billy Pierce looks very good in the above table, fourth place overall, behind two Hall-of-Famers and Mike Garcia of the Cleveland Indians. The next table looks at the top 10 pitchers of the 1950's as measured by overall value over replacement level.

Top 10 Pitchers of the 1950's: Overall Value
pWins pLosses pWinPct pWORL
1Warren Spahn190.4154.00.55340.2
2Robin Roberts197.8169.50.53937.2
3Early Wynn180.9154.60.53934.4
4Billy Pierce162.6136.10.54432.0
5Bob Lemon141.7120.80.54027.3
6E. Mike Garcia132.3109.00.54826.7
7Whitey Ford105.982.00.56423.8
8Don Newcombe119.7104.70.53422.0
9Sal Maglie107.088.80.54621.1
10Johnny Antonelli117.5105.50.52720.0


Pierce is still in fourth place, but now everybody ahead of him is a Hall-of-Famer.

So, how does being one of the best pitchers of the 1950's rate over the longer term? The final table of this article shows the top 50 pitchers in pWins over positional average for whom I have calculated Player won-lost records (completely since 1939, mostly since 1921).

Top 50 Pitchers
(ranked by pWOPA)
pWins pLosses pWinPct pWOPA
1Roger Clemens318.2228.20.58251.1
2Lefty Grove248.3169.60.59444.9
3Greg Maddux328.5271.40.54844.8
4Warren Spahn354.2293.60.54743.8
5Randy 'Big Unit' Johnson281.3221.00.56038.5
6Tom Seaver309.0256.70.54638.1
7Bob Gibson263.9217.30.54834.6
8Pedro J. Martinez193.7137.50.58533.9
9Jim Palmer242.7186.00.56633.6
10Juan Marichal232.2187.10.55432.3
11Steve Carlton338.0304.20.52631.6
12Whitey Ford210.6164.40.56231.1
13Mike Mussina224.3173.20.56429.6
14Mariano Rivera126.660.80.67629.6
15John Smoltz239.8201.20.54429.1
16Tom Glavine279.5249.60.52829.1
17Fergie Jenkins286.8250.90.53326.8
18J. Kevin Brown204.6164.70.55426.4
19Bob Feller252.5215.20.54026.1
20Clayton Kershaw134.896.50.58326.0
21Curt Schilling207.0172.00.54625.5
22Robin Roberts297.0269.80.52424.8
23Don Sutton320.9295.40.52124.6
24Nolan Ryan356.9328.10.52124.6
25Early Wynn309.3284.30.52124.2
26Gaylord Perry317.9289.30.52423.8
27Roy Halladay171.5133.10.56323.7
28Tim Hudson198.8167.50.54323.7
29Andy Pettitte211.6174.70.54823.6
30Tommy John278.0247.90.52923.6
31Bob Lemon198.4165.40.54523.5
32Dennis Eckersley217.3174.40.55522.4
33Billy Pierce218.8189.80.53622.4
34Bert Blyleven291.3260.10.52822.2
35Dwight Gooden184.1156.00.54122.0
36Dazzy Vance172.3136.00.55921.9
37Carl Hubbell193.8161.40.54621.6
38C.C. Sabathia204.7171.50.54421.4
39Sandy Koufax157.6126.30.55521.1
40Luis Tiant225.8195.00.53720.9
41David Cone184.5153.80.54520.7
42Bret Saberhagen154.9120.60.56220.4
43Hal Newhouser199.4171.00.53820.3
44Jim Bunning239.2217.50.52420.2
45Zack Greinke161.0135.00.54419.2
46Johan Santana128.597.40.56919.1
47Wes Ferrell153.9124.90.55219.1
48Roy Oswalt147.6124.00.54318.9
49Adam Wainwright130.3107.80.54718.3
50E. Mike Garcia146.4118.70.55218.3


Measured by career pWOPA, Billy Pierce ranks among the top 30 pitchers of the past 70-some years. Every player above Pierce on the list who was eligible for the Hall of Fame by 2010 has been elected to the Hall of Fame except for Tommy John. That looks like a pretty solid Hall-of-Fame case to me.



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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