Baseball Players
Billy Williams

Best Left Fielders

Billy Williams
Art West's image for:
"Best Left Fielders"
Caption: Billy Williams
Image by: unknown

There have been may great Left Fielders in baseball history. The first player that comes to my mind is my all-time favorite player, Billy Williams of the Chicago Cubs. Billy Williams is in the Hall of Fame with a career batting average of .290, 2,711 hits, 426 HRS, 1475 RBI and at one time he held the NL record for most consecutive games played with 1,117.

While Billy Williams' numbers are pretty impressive, I hate to say he is not the best Left Fielder in history. A popular player from Billy Williams' era was Carl Yastrzemski. Yaz was loved in Boston and holds the record for the most gold gloves by a Left Fielder with 7. Yaz's career numbers are similar to Williams' with a .285 career average, 3,419 hits, 452 HRS and 1,844 RBI. But his numbers pale in comparison with some other Left Fielders.

Rickey Henderson was another great Left Fielder. Henderson holds the career records for most runs scored (2,295), most stolen bases (1,406) and most walks (2,190). Henderson showed power with 297 HRS and he also had 3,055 hits but his career batting average is a slightly above average .279.

Since the movie "Field of Dreams" came out in the 1980's, "Shoeless" Joe Jackson has become a sentimental favorite as the all-time best Left Fielder. Jackson put up some pretty impressive numbers with his .356 career batting average and 1,772 hits in only 9 years. Of course Joe's career was cut short because of the "Black Sox" scandal of 1919.

Stan "The Man" Musial is a player that often gets forgotten when you run down a list of all-time great players. Once someone says his name then everyone says "oh yeah, I forgot about him!" Musial had a career .331 batting average with 3,630 career hits, 475 career HRS, 1,975 career RBI and 1,949 runs scored. The St. Louis Cardinals honored Musial with a statue of him outside of Busch Stadium.

There are many more great Left Fielders but the man that tops my list is Ted Williams of the Boston Red Sox. Williams had his career interrupted by WWII. Willliams was called to duty in the Naval Air Force in 1942 and flew 38 combat missions in his military career. Despite the interruption, Williams still had 2,654 career hits, 521 HRS, 1,839 RBI and 1,798 runs scored. Williams also had a .344 career batting average and is the last player to hit .400 in a season. Williams hit .406 in 1941 and most amazingly he did it by NOT sitting on the bench. Williams entered the last game of the season hitting .399. He played both games of a doubleheader and went 6 for 8 raising his average to .406! It is amazing enough that someone could raise their batting average 6 points on the last day of the season, but to raise it from .399 to .406 is incredible.

More about this author: Art West

From Around the Web