FanPost

Jose Bautista: Great WARior, or Greatest WARrior?

The greatest player in baseball right now, our very own Jose Bautista, has accumulated 6.6 WAR (rWAR, to be specific) as we enter the unofficial second half of the season. We are all aware that has been a fantastic first half of the season for the Jedi, and that he still has 70 games to produce more WAR. This means that Jose Bautista can very possibly become one of the most valuable Blue Jays in franchise history because only 14 other Jays have ever finished an entire season with 6.6 WAR or more, and out of these 14, only 5 were position players.

So, just who are the greatest WARriors in franchise history?

First, the pitchers:

Rk Player WAR Year Age GS CG SHO W L IP BB SO ERA ERA+ HR HBP
1 Roger Clemens 10.3 1997 34 34 9 3 21 7 264.0 68 292 2.05 222 9 12
2 Pat Hentgen 8.4 1996 27 35 10 3 20 10 265.2 94 177 3.22 156 20 5
3 Dave Stieb 7.7 1984 26 35 11 2 16 8 267.0 88 198 2.83 146 19 11
4 Roy Halladay 7.5 2003 26 36 9 2 22 7 266.0 32 204 3.25 145 26 9
5 Roger Clemens 7.5 1998 35 33 5 3 20 6 234.2 88 271 2.65 174 11 7
6 Roy Halladay 6.9 2002 25 34 2 1 19 7 239.1 62 168 2.93 159 10 7
7 Roy Halladay 6.8 2009 32 32 9 4 17 10 239.0 35 208 2.79 159 22 5
8 Dave Stieb 6.8 1982 24 38 19 5 17 14 288.1 75 141 3.25 138 27 5
9 Jimmy Key 6.6 1987 26 36 8 1 17 8 261.0 66 161 2.76 164 24 2

Source: http://www.baseball-reference.com/play-index/share.cgi?id=oIeCc

Then, the position players:

Rk Player WAR/pos Year Age G PA AB R H HR RBI BB IBB SO SB CS BA OBP SLG
1 John Olerud 8.2 1993 24 158 679 551 109 200 24 107 114 33 65 0 2 .363 .473 .599
2 Jesse Barfield 7.3 1986 26 158 671 589 107 170 40 108 69 5 146 8 8 .289 .368 .559
3 Vernon Wells 6.7 2006 27 154 677 611 91 185 32 106 54 0 90 17 4 .303 .357 .542
4 Jose Bautista 6.6 2011 30 84 376 299 73 100 31 65 74 14 54 5 3 .334 .468 .702
5 Fred McGriff 6.6 1989 25 161 680 551 98 148 36 92 119 12 132 7 4 .269 .399 .525
6 Jesse Barfield 6.6 1985 25 155 612 539 94 156 27 84 66 5 143 22 8 .289 .369 .536

Source: http://www.baseball-reference.com/play-index/share.cgi?id=4gp6b

George Bell's MVP season in 1987 doesn't even appear on this list, having only accumulated 5.0 WAR during the season. (Alan Trammell, who finished 2nd that year, had a 8.4 WAR)

A simple (and probably completely inaccurate) linear projection over the remaining 70 games based on Bautista's accumulation of 6.6 WAR during 84 games will give him a 12.1 WAR for the season. The 12.1 mark has only been achieved or surpassed 13 times in MLB history: Babe Ruth (4x), Barry Bonds (3x), Mickey Mantle (2x), Rogers Hornsby, Carl Yastrzemski, Walter Johnson (pitcher), and Steve Carlton (pitcher)--the record holder being Ruth with a 14.7 WAR in 1923.

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