11 May 2007

1897 National League

Boston outdueled Baltimore for the pennant by a two-game margin, ending the Orioles' three-year reign at the top. New York was a solid third, Cleveland and Cincinnati also finished over .500. Washington, Brooklyn, and Pittsburgh were next in a clump, Chicago, Philly, and Louisville were also-rans, and St. Louis was the sad sack with a 29-102 record.

Willie Keeler won the batting title with a .424 average, while Fred Clarke was second at .390. Jesse Burkett hit .383 and Ed Delahanty .377. Keeler led in OPS, although John McGraw led in on-base average and Nap Lajoie led in slugging. Keeler led with 239 hits, Billy Hamilton scored 152 runs, George Davis had 136 RBI, and Bill Lange stole 73 bases.

Among pitchers, Kid Nichols led with 31 wins, Amos Rusie led with a 2.54 ERA, while Doc McJames and Cy Seymour each had 156 strikeouts. Down the lists were Amos Rusie with 27 wins, Fred Klobedanz had 26, Joe Corbett 24, and Ted Breitenstein 23. Nichols had a 2.64 ERA, Jerry Nops 2.81, Corbett 3.11. Corbett had 149 strikeouts, Rusie 135.

Win Shares leaders, pitchers; Kid Nichols (Boston) 41, Ted Breitenstein (Cincinnati) 34, Amos Rusie (New York) 31, Cy Young (Cleveland) 28, Win Mercer (Washington) 27, Fred Klobedanz (Boston) and Brickyard Kennedy (Brooklyn) 25, Billy Rhines (Cincinnati) 24, Joe Corbett (Baltimore), Frank Dwyer (Cincinnati) and Jouett Meekin (New York) 23.

Players: Willie Keeler (Baltimore) 32, George Davis (New York) 31, Fred Clarke (Louisville) 30, Hughie Jennings (Baltimore) 29, Billy Hamilton (Boston) 28, Joe Kelley (Baltimore) and Jimmy Collins (Boston) 26, Hugh Duffy (Boston) 25, Jake Stenzel (Boston) and George Van Haltren (New York) 24, Jesse Burkett (Cleveland), Mike Tiernan (New York) and Ed Delahanty (Philadelphia) 23.

WARP3 scores, pitchers; Nichols 8.9, Rusie 8.7, Breitenstein 6.7, Mercer 6.3, Kennedy 6.0, Clark Griffith (Chicago) 5.9, Nixey Callahan (Chicago) 5.4, Cy Seymour (New York) 4.6, Meekin and Rhines 4.3, Young 4.1.

WARP3 for players: Keeler 9.6, Jennings 9.3, Davis 9.2, Collins 7.8, Clarke 7.6, Kelley 7.1, Bobby Wallace (Cleveland) and Nap Lajoie (Philadelphia) 6.9, Hamilton 6.8, Cupid Childs (Cleveland) 6.6, Delahanty 6.4, Heinie Reitz (Baltimore) 5.8, Burkett 5.6.

WAR, pitchers: Nichols 10.0, Rusie 7.7, Breitenstein 6.5, Young 5.5, Powell 4.6, Dwyer and Rhines 4.3, Nops 4.2, Corbett 4.1. Position players: Jennings 7.7, Keeler 7.5, Clarke 7.1, Davis 7.0, Burkett 6.3, Wallace 5.8, Hamilton, Childs, and Delahanty 5.5, Kelley 5.4, Collins 5.3.

Top pitcher: Kid Nichols, 1st in wins, innings and WHIP, 2nd in ERA. Amos Rusie a close second, he was the ERA leader.
#1 Kid Nichols, #2 Amos Rusie, #3 Ted Breitenstein, #4 Cy Young, #5 Win Mercer.

Top player: Willie Keeler, leader in batting average, hits and OPS, 2nd in runs. He also was in the pennant race.
#1 Willie Keeler, #2 George Davis, #3 Hughie Jennings, #4 Fred Clarke, #5 Ed Delahanty.

Top rookie was Jack Powell, 15-10 for Cleveland. Honus Wagner (.338 in 61 games) had the best career.

Manager of the Year to Boston's Frank Selee, slipping past the Orioles for the pennant.

Special Award for Best Comeback: Amos Rusie.
After not playing in 1896 because of a contract dispute Rusie was one of the best pitchers of 1897, arguably THE best.

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