When we talk about postseason statistical titles or when we break down numbers, we often talk about performance among qualifying players. For hitters, this means among players who have had 3.1 PA or more per each team game. Over the course of 162 games, that works out to just over 502 PA in a season. But players who don’t reach that threshold can still be valuable and I’d like to highlight some of the best.
Here are the basic rules. First, this is since 1962 when both leagues went to the 162 games schedule and I’ve dropped out all seasons with labor stoppages. I’ve also rounded down to 500 PA just for simplicity and because sometimes a team plays 161 or 163 games or whatever. Don’t get caught up the technicalities. Below are The Nine best ranked by WAR with the recognition that defensive numbers are pretty imprecise when we go back beyond the last 10 or so seasons.
And for more detailed information on those seasons:
All of these, as you would expect feature players who came very close to qualifying. Should you be curious Justin Morneau’s 2010 season of 4.9 WAR is the highest on the list among players who had fewer than 400 PA.