Pittsburgh won an exciting pennant race by outlasting St. Louis (by 1.5 games) and New York (by two games). Chicago finished a strong fourth. The Pirates and Cubs traded the lead for much of the summer, with New York coming on at the end, and St. Louis strong all the way through. It was the Pirates that prevailed in a great race. Cincinnati was 5th, followed by Brooklyn and Boston, while Philadelphia lost 103 games. The National League was still not dominated by power the way the American was, but batting averages were becoming quite fat. This trend would continue through 1930, then break.
Paul Waner won the league batting title with a .380 average, and also led with 237 hits, 18 triples, 131 RBI, and tied for the lead with 133 runs. He also led in total bases with 342. Rogers Hornsby led in on-base and OPS, and also tied with 133 runs and was second with a .361 average. Rookie Lloyd Waner was third with a .355 batting mark. Chick Hafey led in slugging. Hack Wilson and Cy Willimas had 30 homers each, Hornsby 26. Riggs Stephenson led with 46 doubles, and Frankie Frisch with 48 steals.
Charlie Root led with 26 wins to Jesse Haines' 24, Carmen Hill won 22 and Pete Alexander 21. Ray Kremer led with a 2.47 ERA to Alexander's 2.52, Dazzy Vance third at 2.70 and Haines fourth with 2.72. Vance led with 184 strikeouts followed by Root with 145.
Win Shares leaders, players; Rogers Hornsby (New York) 40, Paul Waner (Pittsburgh) 36, Frankie Frisch (St. Louis) 34, Hack Wilson (Chicago) 31, Riggs Stephenson (Chicago) and Bill Terry (New York) 27, George Harper (New York), Pie Traynor (Pittsburgh) and Jim Bottomley (St. Louis) 26, Lloyd Waner (Pittsburgh) 25.
WS leaders, pitchers; Pete Alexander and Jesse Haines (St. Louis) 28, Dazzy Vance (Brooklyn) 25, Red Lucas (Cincinnati) 23, Carmen Hill and Ray Kremer (Pittsburgh) 22, Jesse Petty (Brooklyn) and Charlie Root (Chicago) 21, Lee Meadows (Pittsburgh) 20.
WARP3: Hornsby 9.9 (his only year with New York), Frisch 8.8 (first year in St. Louis), P. Waner 7.6, Traynor 7.0, Harper 6.2 (career year), Chuck Dressen (Cincinnati) 6.0, Travis Jackson (New York) 5.9, Wilson 5.6, Stephenson 5.1 (best year), Terry and Gabby Hartnett (Chicago) 4.7, Chick Hafey (St. Louis) 4.5, Bottomley 4.4.
Pitchers, Vance 6.8, Alexander 6.0, Lucas 5.9, Haines 5.1 (best year), Dutch Ulrich (Philadelphia) 4.9, Petty 4.8, Kremer 4.7, Bob Smith (Boston) 4.3, Burleigh Grimes (New York) 3.6, Dolf Luque (Cincinati) 3.5, Kent Greenfield (Boston) 3.2.
WAR, position players: Hornsby 10.8, Frisch 10.0, P. Waner 7.7, Wilson 6.9, Harper 6.0, Terry 5.7, Stephenson 5.6, Jackson 5.5, Bottomley 5.2, Dressen 4.9, Traynor 4.5. Pitchers: Vance 6.3, Kremer 6.1, Alexander 5.6, Haines 5.4, Petty 5.2, Meadows 4.8, Ulrich 4.2, Hill 4.1, Lucas 3.7, Bush 3.4.
Actual MVP voting (top 17):
Place Name Team Points
1 Paul Waner PIT 72
2 Frankie Frisch STL 66
3 Rogers Hornsby NYG 54
4 Charley Root CHC 46
5 Travis Jackson NYG 42
6 Lloyd Waner PIT 25
7 Pie Traynor PIT 18
8 Jesse Haines STL 16
9 Ray Kremer PIT 14
10 Gabby Hartnett CHC 12
11 Red Lucas CIN 10
12 Hack Wilson CHC 9
13 Jim Bottomley STL 6
13 Bubbles Hargrave CIN 6
13 Jakie May CIN 6
13 Bill Terry NYG 6
13 Cy Williams PHI 6
Top player: Rogers Hornsby. I'd like to go with Waner, but all three meta-stats agree on the same guy and that's hard to ignore. Hornsby was a real SOB and only lasted with John McGraw the one year in New York, but he was excellent on the field as always.
#1 Rogers Hornsby, #2 Frankie Frisch, #3 Paul Waner, #4 Hack Wilson, #5 George Harper.
Top pitcher: Pete Alexander. It's a tough call, with no standout, but I'll go with the old veteran in one last hurrah. Alex was 21-10 with a 2.52 ERA (2nd in the league). Jesse Haines, 24-10 with a 2.72 ERA, is 2nd. Strikeout leader Dazzy Vance, 16-15 with a 2.70 ERA, ranks 3rd. Red Lucas 4th, Ray Kremer 5th.
Top rookie: Lloyd Waner, .355 for the pennant winners playing beside his brother.
Top manager: Donie Bush, longtime Detroit shortstop, winning the pennant in his first season with the Pirates.