Baseball Player Won-Loss Records
Home     List of Articles



Johnny Mize

Hall-of-Famers as Seen Through Player Won-Lost Records: Johnny Mize

Johnny Mize was elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans' Committee in 1981.

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

Johnny Mize
Basic Player Won-Lost Records
Value Decomposition
Season Team Age Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
1936SLN23
90
11.36.70.6291.7
2.5
10.27.10.5891.01.8
1937SLN24
145
18.813.50.5821.6
2.9
19.313.10.5952.03.4
1938SLN25
149
17.014.30.5430.3
1.5
19.013.50.5861.73.0
1939SLN26
152
20.114.00.5901.8
3.3
20.313.60.6002.13.6
1940SLN27
155
19.814.40.5791.9
3.3
20.914.00.5992.74.1
1941SLN28
126
16.410.00.6212.3
3.5
17.511.70.5991.93.2
1942NY129
142
20.812.30.6273.3
4.6
18.111.90.6042.23.4
1943-30
-
----
-
-----
1944-31
-
----
-
-----
1945-32
-
----
-
-----
1946NY133
101
13.49.00.5991.5
2.4
13.68.30.6202.02.8
1947NY134
154
21.214.50.5942.4
3.8
20.512.90.6142.94.3
1948NY135
152
20.514.60.5842.8
4.3
19.113.20.5922.84.1
36
119
11.210.60.5130.2
1.1
10.89.60.5290.51.3
1950NYA37
90
9.26.00.6051.2
1.9
8.36.10.5750.71.3
1951NYA38
113
9.57.70.5520.7
1.4
8.97.80.5350.41.1
1952NYA39
78
3.43.70.474-0.2
0.1
3.93.60.5180.10.5
1953NYA40
81
3.43.10.5240.2
0.6
3.02.70.5260.20.5
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER (reg. season)
81
3.43.10.5240.2
0.6
3.02.70.5260.20.5
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
PostSeason (career)
18
1.50.90.632 0.41.41.00.578 0.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
COMBINED
99
5.04.00.524
1.0
4.43.70.526 0.8


Player won-lost records are calculated based on Retrosheet play-by-play data. Retrosheet has released play-by-play data for every season of Johnny Mize's career. Retrosheet only has complete play-by-play data, however, since 1937.

The next table presents Johnny Mize's career, as measured by Player won-lost records, but extrapolating the missing games from his career, based on the games for which I do have play-by-play data.

Johnny Mize
Basic Player Won-Lost Records (missing games extrapolated)
Value Decomposition
Season Team Age Games pWins pLosses pWin Pct. pWOPA pWORL eWins eLosses eWin Pct. eWOPA eWORL
1936SLN23
126
15.89.30.6292.4
3.6
14.29.90.5891.42.5
1937SLN24
145
18.813.50.5821.6
2.9
19.313.10.5952.03.4
1938SLN25
149
17.014.30.5430.3
1.5
19.013.50.5861.73.0
1939SLN26
152
20.114.00.5901.8
3.3
20.313.60.6002.13.6
1940SLN27
155
19.814.40.5791.9
3.3
20.914.00.5992.74.1
1941SLN28
126
16.410.00.6212.3
3.5
17.511.70.5991.93.2
1942NY129
142
20.812.30.6273.3
4.6
18.111.90.6042.23.4
1943-30
-
----
-
-----
1944-31
-
----
-
-----
1945-32
-
----
-
-----
1946NY133
101
13.49.00.5991.5
2.4
13.68.30.6202.02.8
1947NY134
154
21.214.50.5942.4
3.8
20.512.90.6142.94.3
1948NY135
152
20.514.60.5842.8
4.3
19.113.20.5922.84.1
36
119
11.210.60.5130.2
1.1
10.89.60.5290.51.3
1950NYA37
90
9.26.00.6051.2
1.9
8.36.10.5750.71.3
1951NYA38
113
9.57.70.5520.7
1.4
8.97.80.5350.41.1
1952NYA39
78
3.43.70.474-0.2
0.1
3.93.60.5180.10.5
1953NYA40
81
3.43.10.5240.2
0.6
3.02.70.5260.20.5
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CAREER (reg. season)
81
3.43.10.5240.2
0.6
3.02.70.5260.20.5
------ ------ ------ ------ ------
PostSeason (career)
18
1.50.90.632 0.41.41.00.578 0.3
------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
COMBINED
99
5.04.00.524
1.0
4.43.70.526 0.8


Johnny Mize is one of the best players in major-league history who had to wait for the Veterans' Committee to elect him to the Hall of Fame. And, frankly, I'm not sure I understand why.

Was Johnny Mize's value hidden in under-appreciated statistics?
Not really. His value was almost entirely on offense and his offensive value was fairly reflected in his Triple Crown stats.

Mize had a career batting average of .312. He hit .329 or better five times, batted as high as .364 (in 1937) and won a batting title when he batted .349 in 1939.

Mize led his league in home runs four times with a high total of 51 home runs in 1947. True, his career total of 359 looks fairly pedestrian to the modern eye. But he was sixth in major-league history and third in National League history in home runs when he retired in 1953.

The third Triple Crown stat? Mize drove in 100 or more runs eight times in his career (he also scored 100 or more runs five times) and led his league in RBI three times. Mize also led his league in doubles (once), triples (once), slugging percentage (four times), and total bases (three times).

Was Johnny Mize trapped on bad teams in small cities?
Not at all. Mize played in New York City for nine seasons and he played on five (consecutive) World Series winners - in his last five seasons. Johnny Mize played for the New York Yankees for five seasons: the Yankees won the AL pennant and World Series all five of those seasons. The Yankees lost the pennant to the Cleveland Indians the years immediately before and after Mize played for them.

Was Johnny Mize unappreciated in his time?
Not obviously so. He was named to ten All-Star teams, eight of them as the starting first baseman. True, he never won an MVP award. But he received MVP votes eleven times. He finished in the top 10 in MVP voting six times, in the top 5 four times, in the top 3 three times, in the top two twice.

So why was Johnny Mize not elected to the Hall of Fame until almost thirty years after he retired?
I have two possible theories.

First, while it's true that he played for five World Series winning Yankee teams, Mize played more than 90 games in only one of those five seasons and he never had more than 332 at bats in a single season as a Yankee.

Meanwhile, Mize's prime years were spent in St. Louis, where he had the bad fortune of missing the Cardinals' 1934 World Championship by two seasons at one end and their 1942 World Championship by one season at the other end. The 1941 Cardinals won 97 games and finished in second place with Johnny Mize at first base. The 1942 Cardinals won 106 games, the NL pennant, and the World Series with Johnny Hopp as their primary first baseman. I don't know: I wasn't there, but maybe people thought Mize was holding the Cardinals back.

Second, one reason why Johnny Mize's career home run total is fairly modest (by modern standards; as I said, 350 home runs was a LOT for a player of his time) is because he missed three seasons during what should have been his prime because of World War II. Mize is not the only player from this era who had to wait for the Veterans' Committee to get his due - among the players I've already written about (meaning they were inducted into the Hall of Fame even later than Mize) include Hal Newhouser, Bobby Doerr, Enos Slaughter, Phil Rizzuto, and Joe Gordon.

The gap in Johnny Mize's career spans his age-30 through age-32 seasons. The next two tables, then, show the most similar players to Johnny Mize through age 29 and from age 33 onward as measured by Player won-lost records.

Most Similar Players to Johnny Mize,
through age 29

Wins over Baseline
Player Games pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL Batting Baserunning Fielding
Johnny Mize
959
124.285.213.0
21.6
17.50.20.2
Hank Greenberg
839
118.481.112.5
20.7
14.0-0.00.8
Frank E. Thomas
1,076
133.394.114.9
24.8
20.6-0.3-0.5
Willie McCovey
1,073
130.291.513.6
22.7
14.1-0.1-0.5
Jeff Bagwell
1,008
134.397.012.0
21.2
14.50.71.4
Rogers Hornsby
556
86.962.211.6
17.4
13.8-0.21.0
Dick Allen
1,143
165.5127.414.0
25.9
17.10.6-0.5
Fred McGriff
1,032
118.692.28.5
16.8
13.4-0.10.3
Jim Thome
1,073
122.195.610.6
19.7
12.8-0.10.6
Miguel Cabrera
1,511
199.7159.714.6
28.0
17.4-0.10.1
Will Clark
1,160
145.1105.912.8
22.3
12.60.11.8


Most Similar Players to Johnny Mize,
age 33 onward

Wins over Baseline
Player Games pWins pLosses pWOPA pWORL Batting Baserunning Fielding
Johnny Mize
888
91.869.28.9
15.5
9.10.11.3
Chipper Jones
957
120.996.110.7
18.8
9.7-0.21.3
Tommy Henrich
626
89.463.610.4
16.6
6.60.31.0
Mel Ott
566
76.359.05.9
11.3
8.00.41.6
Manny Ramirez
766
105.483.78.9
16.1
9.6-0.1-0.1
Lou Gehrig
454
60.638.47.6
11.7
8.70.1-0.0
Frank Robinson
891
111.084.510.2
19.4
10.40.40.2
Jim Thome
1,005
93.874.86.9
16.3
10.1-0.40.1
Willie Stargell
1,017
118.087.910.5
18.8
12.3-0.10.7
Ken Caminiti
668
86.070.56.6
12.9
6.00.11.1
Dwight Evans
983
122.1103.17.2
16.6
8.20.31.1


I think these tables make the Hall-of-Fame case for Johnny Mize pretty well. Between the two tables, there are 12 Hall-of-Famers who show up as similar to Johnny Mize over one of the other of these time periods (at least six in each table) - plus at least one and perhaps as many as three others who could some day make it.

One player makes both lists, recent first-ballot Hall-of-Fame inductee Jim Thome. From age 30 through age 32, Thome hit 148 home runs. If Johnny Mize had been able to match that, he would have ended up with 507 career home runs.



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.

Home     List of Articles