Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Eulogy for Mike Piazza' Career

As Mike Piazza's career winds down (he's hitting .231/.315/.397 as of today), I thought I'd look back at one of the greatest non-MVP seasons of all time - Piazza's 1997, when he lost the MVP race to Larry Walker (who ran away with the award). Despite Piazza's shaky defense he was far and away the best player in the league, and the voters just got mesmerized by Walker's Coors-inflated numbers. Let's put Piazza's numbers in perspective - below are six seasons: Albert Pujols' first five seasons, and Piazza's 1997. Can you pick out which one is Piazza?

SeasonHHRRBIAVGOBPSLG
119437130.329.403.610
218534127.314.394.561
321243124.359.439.667
419646123.331.415.657
520140124.362.431.638
619541117.330.430.609

If you can't, then my point is made. Don't forget that Piazza did this in Dodger Stadium. And he's a catcher. Imagine what he would have hit in Colorado. A guy hit like Albert Pujols while playing the hardest position in the field and hitting in the best pitcher's park in the league and still couldn't win the MVP. I guess it's like Ted Williams winning the Triple Crown twice and not winning the MVP either year.

2 comments:

Warren said...

If you're curious, Piazza is #5.

Sully said...

That was my guess - I didn't think he ever hit more than 40 homers, but I remember him reaching it once.

And that really is amazing that he didn't win - that wasn't even the year the Rockies made the playoffs!!!