In “Hardball Retrospective: Evaluating Scouting and Development Outcomes for the Modern-Era Franchises”, I placed every ballplayer in the modern era (from 1901-present) on their original team. Therefore, Fergie Jenkins is listed on the Phillies roster for the duration of his career while the Pirates claim Barry Bonds and the Rays declare Carl Crawford. I calculated revised standings for every season based entirely on the performance of each team’s “original” players. I discuss every team’s “original” players and seasons at length along with organizational performance with respect to the Amateur Draft (or First-Year Player Draft), amateur free agent signings and other methods of player acquisition. Season standings, WAR and Win Shares totals for the “original” teams are compared against the “actual” team results to assess each franchise’s scouting, development and general management skills.
Expanding on my research for the book, the following series of articles will reveal the finest single-season rosters for every Major League organization based on overall rankings in OWAR and OWS along with the general managers and scouting directors that constructed the teams. “Hardball Retrospective” is available in digital format on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes and KoboBooks. The print edition is coming soon. Additional information and a discussion forum are available at TuataraSoftware.com.
OWAR – Wins Above Replacement for players on “original” teams
OWS – Win Shares for players on “original” teams
OPW% – Pythagorean Won-Loss record for the “original” teams
The 1999 Texas Rangers OWAR: 50.4 OWS: 284 OPW%: .512
GM Tom Grieve acquired 79% (38 of 48) of the ballplayers on the 1999 Rangers roster. 38 of the 48 team members were selected through the Amateur Draft process. Based on the revised standings the “Original” 1999 Rangers placed six games behind the Mariners in the American League Western Division race. Texas (83-79) claimed the Wild Card by a one-game margin over Chicago and Kansas City.
Perennial All-Star backstop Ivan Rodriguez enhanced his trophy case with the 1999 A.L. MVP award. “Pudge” produced a .332 BA while notching career-bests in home runs (35), RBI (113), runs scored (116), base hits (199) and stolen bases (25). Rodriguez collected 13 Gold Glove Awards including 10 in consecutive seasons (1992-2001). “Slammin’” Sammy Sosa launched 63 moon-shots, drove in 141 baserunners and registered 114 tallies. Juan “Igor” Gonzalez belted 39 round-trippers, knocked in 128 runs and delivered a .328 BA after an MVP season in the previous campaign.
Fernando Tatis (.298/34/107) enjoyed a career year over at the hot corner, scoring 104 runs and swiping 21 bags. Rusty Greer clubbed 41 doubles, 20 big-flies and plated 101 baserunners while eclipsing the .300 mark for the fourth successive season. Rich Aurilia (.281/22/80) and Mike Stanley (.281/19/72) supplied additional thump towards the bottom of the lineup. Warren Morris parlayed a .288 BA and 15 long balls into a third-place finish in the Rookie of the Year balloting.
Rodriguez slots into 13th place in “The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract” among backstops. He certainly elevated his ranking after playing ten additional years following the publication of NBJHBA in 2001. Right fielders Sosa and Gonzalez are listed in 45th and 52th place, respectively.
|Kevin L. Brown||C||0.12||0.58|
Kevin J. Brown, the undisputed ace of the Texas rotation, compiled a record of 18-9 with a 3.00 ERA, 1.066 WHIP and 221 strikeouts. The balance of the starting staff submitted sub-par efforts in contrast to their career norms. Jeff Zimmerman (9-3, 2.36) fashioned a 0.833 WHIP and received an invitation to the Mid-Summer Classic during his rookie campaign.
|Kevin J. Brown||SP||5.54||19.92|
The “Original” 1999 Texas Rangers roster
|NAME||POS||WAR||WS||General Manager||Scouting Director|
|Kevin Brown||SP||5.54||19.92||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Ivan Rodriguez||C||5.22||28.63||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Fernando Tatis||3B||5.05||23.74||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Sammy Sosa||RF||4.98||26.64||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Darren Oliver||SP||3.94||12.45||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Rick Helling||SP||3.78||12.52||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Jeff Zimmerman||RP||3.67||14.64||Doug Melvin||Chuck McMichael|
|Rich Aurilia||SS||3.06||18.11||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Kenny Rogers||SP||2.97||11.57||Eddie Robinson||Joe Klein|
|Juan Gonzalez||RF||2.88||24.42||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Rey Sanchez||SS||2.59||11.29||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Rusty Greer||LF||2.32||21.03||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Jose Hernandez||SS||2.3||16.33||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Wilson Alvarez||SP||1.89||9.95||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Mike Stanley||1B||1.82||13.67||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Warren Morris||2B||1.71||15.4||Doug Melvin|
|Brian Bohanon||SP||1.63||9.68||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Ryan Dempster||SP||1.45||6.98||Doug Melvin||Sandy Johnson|
|Mike Venafro||RP||1.19||7.36||Doug Melvin||Sandy Johnson|
|Dean Palmer||3B||1.04||16.71||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Mark Petkovsek||RP||0.84||9.49||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Jim Brower||SP||0.42||1.87||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Terry Mathews||RP||0.31||2.54||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Hanley Frias||SS||0.22||4.42||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Edwin Diaz||2B||0.17||0.62||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Danny Kolb||RP||0.13||1.9||Doug Melvin||Sandy Johnson|
|Kevin Brown||C||0.12||0.58||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Jon Shave||SS||0.09||1.98||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Robb Nen||RP||0.07||7.89||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Bill Haselman||C||-0.04||3.84||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Danny Patterson||RP||-0.08||2.64||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Jeff Frye||2B||-0.13||2.35||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Terrell Lowery||CF||-0.17||3.21||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Mike Cather||RP||-0.17||0||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Corey Lee||RP||-0.2||0||Doug Melvin|
|Ruben Mateo||CF||-0.26||1.9||Doug Melvin||Sandy Johnson|
|Jonathan Johnson||RP||-0.26||0||Doug Melvin||Sandy Johnson|
|Kelly Dransfeldt||SS||-0.26||0.8||Doug Melvin|
|Bobby Witt||SP||-0.28||4.52||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Billy Taylor||RP||-0.3||5.54||Eddie Robinson|
|Dan Smith||SP||-0.34||1.73||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Tony Fossas||RP||-0.39||0||Eddie Robinson|
|Ryan Glynn||SP||-0.42||0||Doug Melvin||Sandy Johnson|
|Chad Kreuter||C||-0.58||3.51||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Scott Eyre||RP||-0.66||0||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Doug Davis||RP||-0.66||0||Doug Melvin|
|Julio Santana||SP||-1||0.17||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
|Matt Whiteside||RP||-1.1||0||Tom Grieve||Sandy Johnson|
The “Original” 2001 Rangers OWAR: 48.4 OWS: 278 OPW%: .513
Sosa shredded opposition pitching to the tune of a .328 BA while launching 64 moon-shots, registering 160 RBI and scoring a League-best 146 runs. Aurilia delivered career-bests with a .324 BA, 37 dingers, 97 ribbies and 114 tallies as he topped the circuit with 206 safeties. Gonzalez swatted 35 big-flies and knocked in 140 baserunners. Zimmerman notched 28 saves and Brown furnished a 2.65 ERA in 19 starts.
The “Original” 1924 Senators
References and Resources
James, Bill. The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract. New York, NY.: The Free Press, 2001. Print.
James, Bill, with Jim Henzler. Win Shares. Morton Grove, Ill.: STATS, 2002. Print.
Derek Bain is a New Jersey native with a passion for baseball, statistics, computers and video games. He has written a number of articles for Fangraphs and Seamheads, and enjoys spending quality time with his family.