Saturday, October 20, 2007

Lowest AVG by a DH, minimum 400 PA

This was the idea that led to my long post about designated hitters. I wanted to see which players at an offensive position had managed to put up the worst batting averages in a single season. Certainly batting average is not the best way to measure a player's offense but it's fun to see guys with low averages (so long as their not on your team, I suppose).

Baseball-Reference's Play Index doesn't separate statistics from a season into statistics by position, so in order to get full-time DH's I merely had it look for players that spent 75% or more of their games played at DH. I may have missed a couple players, but when coupled with the 400 PA qualifier, the 75% restriction means I should have caught all the guys whose role was to fill the DH slot pretty much every night.

Here are the ten seasons by designated hitters with averages at .230 or below:
  1. Dave Kingman, 1986, .210
  2. Billy Williams, 1976, .211
  3. Gorman Thomas, 1985, .215
  4. Ken Singleton, 1984, .215
  5. Jonny Gomes, 2006, .216
  6. George Bell, 1993, .217
  7. Alvin Davis, 1991, .221
  8. Reggie Jackson, 1984, .223
  9. Greg Vaughn, 1995, .224
  10. Andre Thornton, 1986, .229
The highest OPS put up by any of those guys was .780 by Gorman Thomas. Ken Singleton had the only sub-.600 season, winding up with .575.

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