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Al Spalding

Image above: Al Spalding.

Fenway Park, Boston

All-Time Player Fielding - Career

Best Ever Fielding Pitcher (1871-2016)



Pitcher

Rank Name First Career
POS FV
LastYear CUM
GP
CUM
PO
CUM
A
CUM
E
CUM
FPCT
CUM
RF
1 Spalding Al 1.1340 1877 2891 215 654 118 0.880 2.71
2 Bond Tommy 1.1314 1884 3629 218 896 109 0.911 2.76
3 Lemon Bob 1.1103 1958 2850 263 709 31 0.969 3.07
4 Devlin Jim 1.1096 1877 1405 89 262 30 0.921 2.25
5 Morton Carl 1.1093 1976 1649 182 249 11 0.975 2.35
6 Joss Addie 1.1074 1910 2327 144 846 36 0.965 3.83
7 Owen Frank 1.1070 1909 1368 92 527 14 0.978 4.07
8 Mathewson Christy 1.1058 1916 4781 281 1503 52 0.972 3.36
9 Ward John 1.1058 1884 2462 169 574 54 0.932 2.72
10 Stottlemyre Mel 1.1015 1974 2661 242 570 26 0.969 2.75
11 Maddux Greg 1.1010 2008 5008 546 1194 53 0.970 3.13
12 Walsh Ed 1.1007 1917 2964 233 1207 56 0.963 4.37
13 Breitenstein Ted 1.0986 1901 2964 244 690 57 0.942 2.84
14 Altrock Nick 1.0973 1924 1514 167 610 29 0.964 4.62
15 Alexander Pete 1.0941 1930 5190 189 1419 25 0.985 2.79
16 Corcoran Larry 1.0915 1887 2392 182 498 67 0.910 2.56
17 Buehrle Mark 1.0914 2015 3283 182 608 22 0.973 2.17
18 Jansen Larry 1.0911 1956 1766 138 335 11 0.977 2.41
19 Wainwright Adam 1.0901 2016 1768 154 230 7 0.982 1.95
20 Glavine Tom 1.0898 2008 4413 262 856 26 0.977 2.28


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    Whose Number One at Pitcher


    1. Al Spalding (1871-1878)

    Do we really think that the top two fielding pitchers in history came from the first decade of the game when many years and most players didn't wear a glove? Quickly put, … no. It's more than likely they were good fielders, even great for their time, but benefit from having less competition, fewer pitchers and teams to take the top spots in the grid of categories each year, and thus made it easier to get the top Field Value in a season. It is interesting, however, that #1 goes to the player who eventually made wearing a glove popular and started a sporting goods company that would outfit most. What comes around goes around or whatever the saying may be. Remember, in 1877, Al was the first well-known player to wear a glove, although that really didn't have much impact on this, as he only pitched in four games from 1877 on.


Fielding Ratings in the Stat Geek Baseball PEVA system are meant to give a grade that relates to value for payroll purposes. A player with a low amount of innings played at a position may be rated lower for that purpose, but be a better defensive player. They would be rated higher in the PEVA/FV system with higher innings played, but their FV is lower due to lack of use.

Photo/graphics source: Baseball Diamond graphic (cover/interior), Billy Frank Alexander Design. Baseball glove (current), Dirk Ziegener. Baseball glove (old) Crissie McDowell. Historic baseball players photos/images; Library of Congress, Mayo's Cut Plug Baseball Cards, Bowman Gum Trading Cards, Goudy Baseball Cards, Jeff Self (Kirby Puckett), Onetwo1 English Wikipedia Project (Troy Tulowitzki), Joon Han (Ernie Banks statue). All rights reserved.

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