Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

THE GREAT TED WILLIAMS

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I’m currently reading Leigh Montville’s biography on Ted Williams. It is a tremendous book on a fascinating American life. Williams is also arguably the greatest hitter and/or offensive player in baseball history.

Williams missed 1943-1945 due to military service during WWII. He was robbed of some of his peak years: ages 24-26. His career numbers are insane enough as they are: 521 HRs, .344/.482/.634, 2021 BBs against only 709 Ks, 2654 hits and 1859 RBI. But imagine adding 3 prime years to those totals. A conservative estimate would then put him at 620+ HRs, over 3200 hits and close to 2500 BBs.

In ’41 & ’42, Williams posted OBPs of .553 and .499. He came back in ’46 like he didn’t miss a game, let alone 3 seasons. His OBPs from ’46-’49: .497, .499, .497, .490. So Williams had a streak of 6 consecutive seasons with OBP of .490 or higher–with a 3 year layoff in the middle. It’s astounding.

Here is a little video Williams for you to enjoy.

  • http://www.windycitysportsblog.com WindyCitySportsBlog.com

    It’s too bad his name was somewhat tarnished with the debacle his son created after his death. It’s probably something that most people who never saw him play will remember hearing about and will use to compare his name. As you point out, most probably forget about his dedicated military service during his prime, something that other fellow athletes endured during that time period. Today, only a guy like Pat Tillman could courageously make that statement. He was the John Wayne of baseball and got the appropriate send off at the all-star game in Boston. Sounds like a great book.

  • http://thewaywardbus.wordpress.com Mike O’Donnell

    I used to take 200 cuts a day because Ted Williams said it made him a better hitter when he did it. I read his book “The Science of Hitting” and it changed the way I play baseball. I used to fall asleep dreaming of his swing. He is my favorite all-time ballplayer, just ahead of Sandberg, Grace, and T. Gwynn. I have been looking for a biography to read, and I think I just found one. Thanks.

    There goes the greatest hitter who ever lived.

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