top players in mlb history
. Eddie Mathews is widely considered as one of the greatest third baseman of all time. Mathews was an All Star in nine different seasons, won two batting titles in 1953 and 1959, and finished runner up in the MVP race during both seasons. He is also tied for 22nd on the career home runs list with 512.
. Mr. October, in my opinion, is the greatest postseason hitter in MLB history. He helped lead the Oakland Athletics to five straight American League pennants, before moving on to the New York Yankees and leading them to three straight pennants and back to back World Series titles. Jackson was an All Star in 14 different seasons, won one MVP award and two World Series MVPs. He is also No. 13 on the career home run list with 563.
. Al Kaline is one of the greatest Detroit Tigers of all time. He was known for the monster home run and his strong throwing arm from right field. Kaline won 10 Gold Gloves throughout his career, in addition to being selected to 18 All Star games. He would finish his career with a .297 average, with 3,007 hits, 399 home runs and 1,583 RBIs.
. The Captainwas one of the greatest multi dimensional players in his career. There was nothing on a baseball field he couldnt do. He was one of the best defensive shortstops of all time, as evidenced by his five gold gloves. Jeter also finished his career with the most hits in Yankees history with 3,465. He was selected to 14 All Star games, won one MVP award and five World Series titles.
. Tony Gwynn is one of the greatest hitters of all time. The things that he did throughout his career were just astonishing, and I wish I couldve moved him higher up this list. Gwynn won eight batting titles in his career, tied for the second most all time. He finished his career with a .338 average and 3,141 hits. Gwynn was selected to 15 All Star games, won seven Silver Slugger awards and garnered five Gold Gloves during his 20 year career.
. Sandy Koufax had an amazing career despite having it cut short at the age of 30 due to arthritis in his left elbow. Koufax only pitched for 12 seasons, but he was the most dominant pitcher in MLB over those 12 years. He was selected to seven All Star teams, won three Cy Young awards, three Triple Crowns, one NL MVP in 1963 and won four World Series titles with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He retired with 165 wins, a 2.76 ERA and 2,396 strikeouts.
. Lefty Grove compiled a 300 141 career record to go along with a 3.06 ERA and 2,266 strikeouts. He was selected to six All Star games during his career with the Philadelphia Athletics and Boston Red Sox. Grove was also a member of two World Series championship teams while with the Athletics in 1929 and 1930. He won the AL MVP in 1931 and was a two time Cy Young winner in 1930 and 1931.
. Possibly the most divisive man on this list, Pete Rose is the all time hits leader with 4,256, and despite all the naysayers, there isnt a soul who can deny that fact. Fans and media alike cant get past the fact that he bet on baseball, but that doesnt mean he isnt one the greatest contact hitters of all time. Rose was a 17 time All Star at five different positions. He won the 1973 MVP and helped lead the Big Red Machine to three World Series tit
. Jackie Robinsons biggest accomplishment cant be quantified by any statistic. His breaking of the color barrier is the single greatest accomplishment of any major league player in history. On the baseball diamond, Robinson only played 10 seasons in MLB, but what a remarkable 10 seasons he had. Robinson won a Rookie of the Year award, an NL MVP award, a batting title, a World Series title and was named to the All Star team six times.
. I gave Yogi Berra a slight edge over Johnny Bench as the greatest catcher of all time. Berra played on a team with Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle, and it was Berra who led the team in RBIs for seven consecutive seasons. Berra was named to 18 All Star teams in his career and won three AL MVP awards. He later became a manager and, combining his playing career and managerial career, was a 13 time World Series champion.
Shoeless Joe Jackson
. One of the most divisive figures in MLB history, Jackson might be best known for being accused of fixing the 1919 World Series. His guilt has since been disputed, and no one really knows if he was guilty or not. Regardless, he still belongs on this list. Jackson has the third highest average in MLB history at .356. Jackson also hit .408 in his rookie year in 1911, which is still the record for a rookie.
. Another MLB great who joined the Navy during World War II, Bob Feller had a wonderful career even though he lost five years due to his service. Feller pitched in 570 career games and compiled a record of 266 162, with 279 complete games, 44 shutouts and a 3.25 average. Ted Williams called Feller the fastest and best pitcher I ever saw during my career. Thats some high profile validation.
. Mariano Rivera is the most dominant reliever ever to step on the pitching rubber. Rivera made it through his entire career basically throwing only one pitch, a cutter. That cutter helped him set the all time saves record at 652 and put Rivera among the greatest players in history. Rivera was a 13 time All Star, five time World Series champion and 1999 World Series MVP.
. Bob Gibson was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1981, his first year of eligibility. He averaged just short of 200 strikeouts a season for his 17 year career, while compiling 251 wins and a 2.91 ERA. Gibson led the St. Louis Cardinals to two World Series titles in 1964 and 1967. He also was a nine time All Star, nine time Gold Glove award winner, two time Cy Young winner and won the NL MVP in 1968.
. Mr. Cub began his career in the Negro Leagues, playing his first professional season for the Kansas City Monarchs. Banks then spent the next two years in the U.S. military and wouldnt begin his career in MLB until September 1953. It didnt take him long to make a splash, as he was the NL Rookie of the Year runner up in 1954. From that point forward, Banks would become a 14 time All Star and two time NL MVP.
. The man known as Yaz is the Boston Red Sox career leader in RBIs, runs, hits, singles, doubles, total bases and games played. Yastrzemski is also third on the Red Sox list in career home runs behind Ted Williams and David Ortiz. Yaz was selected to 18 All Star games throughout his career, won the 1967 AL MVP and was a seven time Gold Glove winner. He finished his career with 3,419 hits, 452 home runs and 1,844 RBIs.
Cal Ripken Jr
. Baseballs Iron Man, Cal Ripken Jr. was a part of one of the most enduring record races that there is in any sport. Ripken played in an MLB record 2,632 consecutive games before voluntarily sitting out the first game of his career. Cal was voted an All Star 19 times and won the AL MVP award twice in his 21 year career. Ripken was a World Series champion in 1983 and is a member of the 3,000 hit club with 3,184 hits.
. Warren Spahn is sixth on the all time career wins list with 363. He won at least 20 games in a staggering 13 seasons and even won 23 games when he was 42 years old. Spahn won both the 1957 Cy Young and World Series, and he was an All Star 17 times during his career. He ended his career with a 3.09 ERA and 2,583 strikeouts.
. His reputation is in shambles at this point, but its hard to argue that Alex Rodriguez has been one of the most productive players the game has ever seen. As things stand today, he has a .299/.382/.556 career line with 670 home runs and 2,016 RBI. He topped 30 home runs and 100 RBI every year from 1998 10, including six straight years over the 40 home run mark and a pair of 50 homer seasons. Hes a three time AL MVP, and his 115.7 rWAR ranks 12th
. Unfortunately for MLB fans, Satchel Paige spent the best years of his career in the Negro Leagues because of the color barrier in MLB that would later be broken by Jackie Robinson. Paige was a five time Negro League All Star and would make his MLB debut at the ripe age of 42 in 1948. Also in that year, Paige became the first Negro League player to pitch in the World Series, and he would become the first Negro League player in the Hall of Fame.
. The term pure hitter was invented for players like George Brett, who is the only third baseman in history with more than 300 homers and 3,000 hits, and he has more career walks (1,096) than strikeouts (908). When Brett went on the disabled list to open the 1984 season, teammate Dan Quisenberry said Brett piled up 3,154 hits with a .305/.369/.487 career line, and he also had some decent pop with 665 doubles and 317 home runs. He won a batting titl
. Albert Pujols broke into the league with one of the best rookie seasons of all time in 2001, and that would be the first of 10 straight seasons in which he topped a .300 average, 30 homers and 100 RBI. All told, he finished his 11 year stretch with the Cardinals with a .328/.420/.617 line to go along with 445 home runs and 1,329 RBI. He won three NL MVP awards during that stretch and helped lead the Cardinals to three NL pennants and two World Se
Grover Cleveland Alexander
. Grover Cleveland Alexander doesnt always get mentioned with the cream of the crop when it comes to great starting pitchers, but he should. He finished his career with 373 wins which is tied for the most in National League history and third all time. Alexander finished his career with a 2.56 ERA and 2,198 strikeouts. He won one World Series title in 1926 and also won three triple crowns in the duration of his career.
. Tris Speaker was as well rounded a center fielder as theres ever been. Offensively, he has the sixth highest career batting average (.345) in MLB history. His 3,514 hits are fifth on the all time list, and his 792 doubles are the most in MLB history. Defensively, Speaker holds career records for assists, double plays and unassisted double plays by an outfielder. He was also a member of three World Series teams and won one MVP award in 1912.
Ken Griffey Jr
. Ken Griffey Jr still has the sweetest swing Ive ever seen. I could sit and watch him take batting practice all day long. Griffey Jr used that swing to crank 630 home runs which is the sixth best of all time. He was named to the All Star team 13 times in his 22 year career, including winning the AL MVP in 1997. Defensively, he was as good as they come. Griffey Jr won 10 consecutive Gold Glove awards, and routinely made difficult plays look easy.
. Johnny Bench was the starting catcher for the Big Red Machine in the 1970s. That was a group that won six division titles, four NL pennants and two World Series titles. Bench was one of the greatest offensive catchers in MLB history. When he retired, he held the career home runs by a catcher record with 389. Bench won two MVP awards and was a 14 time All Star. He also won 10 Gold Glove awards for his defensive prowess.
. Tom Seaver is the only member of the Hall of Fame to wear a New York Mets hat on his plaque. He is also only one of two Mets to ever have their numbers retired. Seaver finished his 20 year career with a 311 205 record, 2.86 ERA and 3,640 strikeouts. Tom Terrific was a 12 time All Star, three time Cy Young award winner and one time World Series champion.
. Rickey Henderson was one of the greatest athletes to ever play in MLB. Blessed with blazing speed, Henderson is the MLB career leader in stolen bases, (1,406), runs scored (2,295), walks (2,129) and lead off home runs (81). He also has the MLB single season record for stolen bases with 130 in 1982. Henderson is the most dynamic base runner and lead off hitter of all time.
. The Ryan Express was one of the most enjoyable pitchers to watch anytime he would take the mound. Throughout his 27 year career, Ryan would throw a fastball that routinely broke 100 mph, even as he pitched into his 40s. Ryan is the career strikeouts leader with 5,714 and is also a member of the 300 wins club, posting 324 wins in his career. Ryan was an eight time All Star and one time World Series champion, but he never won a Cy Young.
. Mike Schmidt is the greatest third baseman to ever play the game of baseball. Offensively, Schmidt had 2,234 hits, 548 home runs and 1,595 RBIs in his career. He made 12 All Star teams, three NL MVP awards, six Silver Slugger awards and led the NL in home runs in eight different seasons. Defensively, Schmidt won 10 Gold Glove awards for his outstanding play at third base. He was the total package.
. Christy Mathewsons career is littered with video game numbers, if they had video games in 1900. He ranks in the all time top 10 in wins, ERA and shutouts. He is the only pitcher to rank in the top 10 in both wins and ERA. He holds the National League record for career wins, posting 373. He won all those games while maintaining a minuscule ERA of 2.18. Mathewson won two World Series titles and two Triple Crowns in his career as well.
. Frank Robinsons illustrious MLB career included winning the Triple Crown, being a two time World Series champion, winning an MVP in both leagues and being selected to 14 All Star games. Robinson fell 57 hits shy of the 3,000 hits club, but he did hit 586 home runs and drove in 1,812 RBIs. He later went on to be a manager for the Cleveland Indians, San Francisco Giants, Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals.
. Jimmie Foxx played 20 major league seasons in MLB and put together an amazing career. Normally first basemen are known for their power and ability to drive in runs. Foxx certainly could do that, as evidenced by his 534 home runs and 1,922 RBIs. The aspect that isnt usually attributed to first basemen is the ability to hit for average. Foxx finished his career with a .325 average. He also won three MVP awards and two World Series titles.
. Roberto Clemente lost his life way too soon in a plane crash in 1972. Before that moment, he put himself in the conversation as one of the greatest players in MLB history. Clemente was the poster boy for a five tool player. He could hit as evidenced by his .300 lifetime batting average and 3,000 hits. He was also the best defensive right fielder of all time, winning 12 Gold Glove awards. Clemente was a 15 time All Star and won the 1966 NL MVP.
. JoltinJoe DiMaggio holds one of those records that will never be broken. In 1941, DiMaggio put strung together a 56 game hitting streak in an otherworldly display of consistency. The Yankee Clipper finished his career with a .325 batting average, 2,214 hits, 361 home runs and 1,537 RBIs. He was named to 13 All Star teams, won three AL MVP awards and brought home nine World Series titles with the New York Yankees.
. Greg Maddux was like a professor on the mound. He knew exactly what he wanted to do in every situation, and most of the time, it was the opposite of what the hitter was thinking. Maddux became the first pitcher in MLB history to win four consecutive Cy Young awards (1992 95). Maddux also holds the record for most Gold Glove awards at any position with 18. He finished his career with 355 wins, a 3.16 ERA and 3,371 strikeouts.
. Cy Young is the one greatest pitchers in MLB history and that will never change. In his 21 year career, he started a record 815 games, logged a record 7,355 innings pitched and tossed 749 complete games. Young is the all time wins leader with 511, and he finished his career with a 2.63 ERA and 2,803 strikeouts. Young won the Triple Crown in 1901 and the World Series in 1903. The Cy Young Award was named for him one year after his death.
. Mickey Mantle was never really known for his defensive abilities. Mantle is considered to be the best switch hitter in MLB history and had a marvelous career at the plate. In his 18 year career, Mantle popped 536 home runs and drove in 1,509 RBIs, while collecting 2,415 hits and finishing with a lifetime batting average of .298. Mantle was a 20 time All Star, seven time World Series champion and three time AL MVP while with the Yankees.
. Rogers Hornsby is one of the best pure hitters in baseball history. His .358 career batting average ranks him second all time behind Ty Cobb. Hornsby collected 2,930 hits, 301 home runs and 1,584 RBIs during his 22 year career. The Rajah was a two time NL MVP, two time Triple Crown winner, seven time batting champion and won the 1926 World Series as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals.
. Honus Wagner is considered to be neck and neck with Ty Cobb as the greatest player in the Dead Ball Era of MLB. Although Wagner only hit 101 home runs in his career, he still drove in 1,732 runs. The Flying Dutchman is a member of the 3,000 hit club, collecting 3,430 hits in his professional career, all the while carrying a batting average of .329. Wagner was also known for his speed, as he retired with 722 stolen bases.
. Barry Bonds should be in the top five of this list based on statistics, but I had to knock him down some because of the steroid scandal. Even before he bulked up and became the best home run hitter in MLB history, he was a five tool outfielder with the Pittsburgh Pirates. He finished with a .298 career batting average, 762 home runs, 2,935 hits, 1,996 RBIs and 514 stolen bases. He also won seven MVP awards and eight Gold Glove awards.
. Walter The Big Train Johnson is the greatest pitcher of all time. Johnson is still the all time MLB record holder in shutouts with 110, second in wins with 417 and fourth in complete games with 531. Johnson also led the league in strikeouts an MLB record 12 times. He finished his career with 3,508 strikeouts and a microscopic ERA of 2.17. He won three Triple Crown awards, two AL MVP awards and a World Series title.
. Stan The Man Musial was the model of consistency and excellence for 24 years. Musial made the All Star team in every single season that he played in MLB, despite missing two seasons to serve in the U.S. military in World War II. He retired with a lifetime batting average of .331 to go along with 3,630 hits, 475 home runs and 1,951 RBIs. Musial won seven batting titles, three NL MVP awards and three World Series titles with the Cardinals.
. Ty Cobb was the second greatest hitter that the game of baseball has ever seen. Cobb holds the all time record for career batting average (.367), batting titles (12) and he is second in hits (4,191). In addition to being the second best hitter of all time, Cobb was also the games best base runner until Rickey Henderson came along. Cobb finished his career with 892 stolen bases. He won the 1909 Triple Crown and 1911 AL MVP.
. Lou Gehrig spent over half of his entire life playing baseball for the New York Yankees. Gehrig died at the young age of 37 from ALS, which has become known as Lou Gehrigs Disease. He earned his nickname The Iron Horse for his durability, playing in an MLB record 2,130 consecutive games, a mark that was later broken by Cal Ripken Jr. Gehrig had a lifetime batting average of .340 and hit 493 career home runs.
. For all of the people that refuse to recognize Barry Bonds762 career home run record, Hank Aaron would still be the home run king with 755 homers. HammerinHank still holds the all time records for RBIs (2,297), extra base hits (1,477) and total bases (6,856). Aaron also made the All Star team every season of his career and finished with 25 career selections. He also won both the NL MVP and World Series title in 1957 with the Braves.
. Teddy Ballgame is the greatest hitter that has ever lived. Ted Williams is the last major leaguer to hit .400 in a season when he hit .406 in 1941. Williams still possesses the MLB record for career OBP, which is .482. Williams compiled a .344 lifetime batting average to go along with 2,654 hits, 521 home runs and 1,839 RBIs. He was named to 19 All Star teams, and won both the AL MVP and Triple Crown twice.
. The Say Hey Kid is the second greatest player to have ever set foot on a baseball field. No other MLB player has ever been as dominant in all facets of the game as Willie Mays. As a hitter, Mays hit .302 for his career, with 3,283 hits, 660 home runs and 1,903 RBIs. Defensively, he has made the greatest plays baseball has ever seen and won 12 Gold Gloves to boot. Mays was a 24 time All Star, two time MVP and won the 1954 World Series.
. Babe Ruth is the greatest baseball player of all time. The Great Bambino did some amazing things throughout his career, but the most impressive is that he was just as dominant a pitcher as he was a hitter. At the plate, Ruth had a lifetime .342 batting average, 2,873 hits, 714 home runs and 2,213 RBIs. As a pitcher, Ruth had a 94 46 record and a 2.28 ERA. The Babe was a seven time World Series champion, 12 time home run champion and won the 1923