The AL lured a few more stars over to the new loop, and came up with some interesting rookies, strengthening the league further. Bill Dinneen, George Davis, and Ed Delahanty switched over for 1902, and gave the AL even more star power. The Milwaukee franchise shifted to St. Louis, getting the league into another larger city. Things were definitely looking up for the AL, and they had a good race, with Philadelphia winning over a good field, followed by St. Louis, Boston, and Chicago, with Cleveland also over .500. Washington wasn't bad, but Detroit and Baltimore were doormats, as John McGraw switched back to the NL at New York and took stars like Joe McGinnity back with him. That was about the only battle Ban Johnson's league lost in 20 years. The AL was still not quite up to the standards of the NL, but they would be by next year.
Ed Delahanty won the batting title with a .376 average. Nap Lajoie hit .378 but only played 87 games with some legal trouble about jumping teams. Charlie (Piano Legs) Hickman was second with a .361 average and led with 193 hits. Dave Fultz and Topsy Hartsel led with 109 runs, Harry Davis and Delahanty with 43 doubles, Jimmy Williams with 21 triples, Socks Seybold had 16 homers. Buck Freeman led with 121 RBI, Hickman 110 RBI, Lave Cross 108 RBI, and Hartsel with 47 steals.
On the mound, Cy Young won 32 games, Rube Waddell 24, Red Donohue and Jack Powell 22. Ed Siever led with a 1.91 ERA, Waddell 2.05, Young and Bill Bernhard 2.15. Waddell led with 210 strikeouts, Young had 160.
Win Shares says....players; Ed Delahanty (Washington) 31, George Davis (Chicago) Bill Bradley (Cleveland) and Lave Cross (Philadelphia) 26, Fielder Jones (Chicago) Sammy Strang (Chicago) Topsy Hartsel (Philadelphia) and Jesse Burkett (St. Louis) 25 each, Socks Seybold (Philadelphia) 24, Buck Freeman (Boston) 23.
Pitchers; Cy Young (Boston) 38, Rube Waddell (Philadelphia) 33, Jack Powell (St. Louis) 31, Red Donahue (Philadelphia) 30, Bill Dinneen (Boston) 27, Eddie Plank (Philadelphia) 25.
WARP3 scores, players: Bradley 9.4, Delahanty 8.4, Lajoie 8.0, Davis 7.9, Freeman 6.6, Seybold 6.5, Cross 6.4, Bobby Wallace (St. Louis) 6.1, Jones 6.0, Jimmy Collins (Boston) 5.9, Burkett and Charlie Hickman (Cleveland) 5.8.
WARP leaders, pitchers: Waddell 9.4, Young 9.2, Win Mercer (Detroit) 6.9, Bill Bernhard (Cleveland) 6.5, Joe McGinnity (Baltimore) 6.3, Plank 6.1, Dinneen 5.9, Powell 5.4, Addie Joss (Cleveland) 5.1, Donahue and Ed Siever (Detroit) 5.0.
WAR, players: Delahanty 7.9, Bradley 7.6, Davis 6.9, Wallace 6.2, Hickman 5.9, Strang 5.7, Cross and Burkett 5.6, Collins 5.5, Freeman 5.3, Seybold and Jones 5.2, Barrett 5.0.
WAR, pitchers: Young 8.9, Waddell 8.4, Dinneen 6.3, Bernhard 5.4, Donahue 5.3, Plank 5.1, Powell 5.0.
Top player, with Lajoie missing almost half a season, was Ed Delahanty in a last hurrah. Less than a year later, he would be dead. In 1902, Delahanty led the AL in on-base, slugging, and OPS, second in batting average and tied for the lead in doubles. He made Washington respectable.
#1 Ed Delahanty, #2 Bill Bradley, #3 George Davis, #4 Charlie Hickman, #5 Lave Cross.
Top pitcher was Cy Young with Rube Waddell second. Both were terrific. I'll vote for the "original" Cy Young, the wins and innings leader while 2nd in strikeouts. Waddell was 2nd in ERA and wins and 1st in strikeouts.
#1 Cy Young, #2 Rube Waddell, #3 Bill Dinneen, #4 Bill Bernhard, #5 Eddie Plank.
Top rookie to Addie Joss, 17-13 for Cleveland.
Top manager to Connie Mack, leading his A's to the title even without Nap Lajoie.