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, Joe Torre is listed on the Braves roster for the duration of his career while the Brewers declare Darrell Porter and the Cardinals claim Keith Hernandez. 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 paperback edition is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and CreateSpace. Supplemental Statistics, Charts and Graphs along with a discussion forum are offered at TuataraSoftware.com.
Don Daglow (Intellivision World Series Major League Baseball, Earl Weaver Baseball, Tony LaRussa Baseball) contributed the foreword for Hardball Retrospective. The foreword and preview of my book are accessible here.
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 2001 Seattle Mariners OWAR: 59.1 OWS: 326 OPW%: .567
Based on the revised standings the “Original” 2001 Mariners outpaced the Athletics, taking the American League pennant by four games. Seattle topped the circuit in OWS and OWAR. GM Woody Woodward acquired 32 of the 38 ballplayers (84%) on the M’s 2001 roster.
Ichiro Suzuki (.350/8/69) earned the 2001 American League MVP and Rookie of the Year Awards following a spectacular season. Suzuki topped the leader boards with 242 base knocks, 56 stolen bases and seized the batting crown. Bret Boone (.331/37/141) supplied career-highs in virtually every offensive category and placed third in the MVP race. Alex Rodriguez (.318/52/135) surpassed the 50-home run mark for the first time in his career and paced the League with 133 tallies. Edgar Martinez rapped 40 doubles and supplied a .306 BA with 23 jacks and 116 RBI. First-sacker Tino Martinez (.280/34/113) and Ken Griffey, Jr. (.286/22/65) provided additional thump while outfielder Jose Cruz Jr. posted a 30-30 campaign.
Ken Griffey, Jr. places seventh among center fielders according to Bill James in “The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract.” Teammates listed in the “NBJHBA” top 100 rankings include Rodriguez (17th-SS), Edgar Martinez (31st-3B) and Omar Vizquel (61st-SS). “A-Rod” only had five full seasons under his belt at the time which accounts for his low rating.
|Ken Griffey, Jr.||CF||1.94||12.8|
|Jose Cruz, Jr.||LF/CF||1.83||18.14|
Joe Mays deserved his lone All-Star nod, notching 17 victories with a 3.16 ERA. Mike Hampton accrued 14 wins while Joel Piñiero fashioned a 2.03 ERA in 11 starts. Kazuhiro Sasaki locked down 45 contests and Derek Lowe added 24 saves, forming a stout relief corps.
The “Original” 2001 Seattle Mariners roster
|NAME||POS||WAR||WS||General Manager||Scouting Director|
|Alex Rodriguez||SS||8.2||34.67||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Joe Mays||SP||7.13||22.29||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Ichiro Suzuki||RF||6.43||31.91||Pat Gillick||Frank Mattox|
|Bret Boone||2B||5.72||34.96||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Edgar Martinez||DH||4.83||25.22||Dan O’Brien|
|Mike Hampton||SP||2.86||10.64||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Tino Martinez||1B||2.24||20.14||Dick Balderson||Roger Jongewaard|
|Joel Pineiro||SP||2.12||7.28||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Ken Griffey, Jr.||CF||1.94||12.8||Dick Balderson||Roger Jongewaard|
|Jose Cruz, Jr.||CF||1.83||18.14||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Derek Lowe||RP||1.72||11.21||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Shawn Estes||SP||1.66||7.72||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Desi Relaford||2B||1.63||13.24||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Jason Varitek||C||1.41||6.62||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Kazuhiro Sasaki||RP||0.96||11.84||Woody Woodward||Frank Mattox|
|Raul Ibanez||DH||0.66||7.05||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Kerry Ligtenberg||RP||0.63||5.04||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Jim Mecir||RP||0.6||5.68||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Ryan Franklin||RP||0.44||5.33||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Matt Mantei||RP||0.22||0.86||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|David Ortiz||DH||0.16||6.83||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Jermaine Clark||DH||-0.01||0||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Brian Fuentes||RP||-0.06||0.52||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Darren Bragg||RF||-0.07||1.2||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Damaso Marte||RP||-0.12||1.36||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Trey Moore||RP||-0.22||0.28||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Charles Gipson||LF||-0.23||1.01||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Ramon Vazquez||SS||-0.23||0.32||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Wilson Delgado||SS||-0.25||0.35||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Ron Villone||SP||-0.27||2.95||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Leslie Brea||RP||-0.28||0||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Omar Vizquel||SS||-0.49||12.72||Hal Keller|
|Roy Smith||RP||-0.5||0||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Brett Hinchliffe||SP||-0.51||0||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Denny Stark||SP||-0.56||0||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Andy Sheets||SS||-0.6||1.73||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Mac Suzuki||SP||-0.85||2.98||Woody Woodward||Roger Jongewaard|
|Dave Burba||SP||-0.99||2.27||Dick Balderson||Roger Jongewaard|
The “Original” 2007 Mariners OWAR: 55.1 OWS: 317 OPW%: .591
Seattle obliterated the competition in the American League Western division by a 16-game margin, securing the pennant while tallying the highest OWS and OWAR scores in the Majors. Alex Rodriguez (.314/54/156) claimed his third A.L. MVP Award and paced the circuit in home runs, RBI, runs scored (143) and SLG (.645). Ichiro Suzuki delivered a .351 BA and topped the American League with 238 base hits. David Ortiz blasted 35 round-trippers and knocked in 117 baserunners. “Big Papi” registered 116 tallies and topped the charts with 111 bases on balls along with a .445 OBP. Kenji Johjima whacked 29 doubles and batted .287 in his sophomore season. Raul Ibanez contributed a .291 BA with 35 two-base hits, 21 dingers and 105 ribbies. Ken Griffey Jr. dialed long distance 30 times and merited his thirteenth and final visit to the Midsummer Classic. J.J. Putz fashioned a 1.38 ERA, saved 40 contests and earned his lone All-Star appearance.
The “Original” 1997 Red Sox
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.