A game which has its origins back to 1344 in France, baseball came to the United States in 1850 but actually only began to capture the attention of the public at the turn of the century. Since that glorious moment, baseball gradually made its way into the favorite national sports, only to become the national pastime later on.
Along this road, numerous players have proven their excellence in the Major League of Baseball and the following article aims to list what we consider the top 10 player list of all times, based on their achievements, statistics and popularity. While all classifications of this type have a certain level of bias, this one takes aims to consider all the important aspects that make up the portrait of the perfect baseball player.
1. Babe Ruth (1895-1948) – “The Sultan of Swat”
Irrespective of the disputes between sports critics and fans, Babe Ruth is and will probably be for a long time representing the very best display of skill and dedication in baseball. With a batting average of .342, 2873 throughout his entire career as well as an impressive 714 home runs carried out, Babe Ruth is definitely a tough act to follow. He played in teams like the Boston Red Sox, the New York Yankees and the Boston Braves, setting still undefeated MLB records like the .690 percentage of slugging throughout his career and 1.164 OPS.
2. Willie Mays Jr. (1931-present day) – “Say Hey Kid”
Debuting in the Major League of Baseball on the 25th of May, 1951 he is considered by most baseball enthusiasts as the rightful owner of the second place in the top 10 best baseball players of all time. Willie Mays Jr. has retired back in 1973 but his career is far from forgotten. Mays’ batting average is .302 and during the 1,903 games he batted, Willie Mays managed to perform 3,283 hits. At the same time, he also carried out 660 successful home runs, boosting the San Francisco Giants and the New York Mets on the first places of the MLB. Among his greatest achievements, the 4 home runs he managed in a single game back in 1961 is probably the most impressive.
3. Ty Cobb (1886-1961) – “Georgia Peach”
Born in Narrows, Georgia, this player currently holds the record for the highest batting average of all times, meaning .367. He debuted in the MLB with the Detroit Tigers in 1905 and made his last appearance in 1928. Ty Cobb’s statistics include 4,191 successful hits, 117 home runs and 1938 RBI (runs batted in). Cobb played for the Detroit Tigers and the Philadelphia Athletics and he even managed the former team between ‘21 and ’26. An impressive yet less known fact is that Ty Cobb had a singular game when he batted at less than .320.
4. Walter Johnson (1887-1946) – “Big Train or Barney”
Walter Johnson debuted in 1907 with the Washington Senators and quickly earned his reputation as one of the world’s best power pitchers. Even in the absence of precision measuring instruments, baseball observers from that period estimated that the speed of ball thrown by Johnson easily exceeded 145 kilometers per hour. He recorded 3,508 strikeouts and 110 shutouts and his earned run average is 2.17. He retired in 1927 with a 417-270 win-loss ratio.