Ted Williams -The Best Damn Hitter Who Ever Lived
My son Tim, now in San Diego, told me on Friday that he was excited to be coaching his JV Kearney HS Komets that day on the high school field where Ted Williams grew up, at Hoover High.
I shared this with a young guy at work (hell, they’re ALL young at my work), and added, as a tagline “the best damn hitter who ever lived”, the famously stated goal of Teddy Ballgame -- to be able to walk down the street and be referred to in that manner.
Young guy at work says ‘even better than Edgar Martinez?’
I laughed out loud at the very thought.
For grins and giggles, I looked the two up.
Edgar’s two best seasons for batting average - .356 and .343.
Williams’ career BA - .344. (Edgar’s career BA was .312.)
Edgar’s best On-Base Percentage - .479. Career - .418.
Williams’ best OBP - . 553 Career - .482.
Edgar’s best single year Slugging Avg .628. Career - .515
Williams’ best SA - .735 Career - .634 .
Edgar’s best year for On-Base Plus Slugging - 1.107 Career .933
Williams best OPS career -1.287 Career 1.116
Edgar, the doubles hitting machine, had 514 2-base hits.
Teddy Ballgame had 525.
Walks - Edgar 1283 Williams 2021 (!!)
Not to mention the difference in HRs 309 - 521.
Made to look like an average 162-game season (which Williams never played in – his were 154 game seasons), their major stat-lines looked like this -
Edgar .312 24 HRs 99 RBIs
Williams .344 37 130
Granted, Williams played one extra season (19) than did Edgar (curse you FOREVER Jim Presley), but he also missed five years in the military (when he would have been 24-26, and 33-34).
None of this meant to disparage Edgar Martinez, who we here hold near and dear – but if he is to be measured by Ted Williams’ standard, then it will be a hot day in Cooperstown, when Ted is uncryogenically defrozen, before Edgar makes the Hall of Fame.
There’s no question about it.