Righthanded Hitting, Righthanded Throwing SS
Seasons with Braves: 1980-87
Career Stats with Braves: .263/.298/.345, 37 HR, 301 RBI, 387 RS, 93 SBs
He’s 18th in total bases, 12th in SBs, 16th in 2Bs, 22d in RBI, 19th in runs scored, so we need to talk about him. Rafy’s best year was 1983 – he actually got votes for MVP with a .297 average and 58 rbis.
Defensively, Rafy combined pretty good range with a “hard glove.” He wound up being slightly below average as a result. Mac thinks he was worse than I do as a shortstop. The fact that he was getting votes for MVP with not really MVP stats indicates to me that he was thought of as a decent fielder.
Is he top 44? Based on career value, sure. Peak value, not so much.
Destined for the taxi squad, I fear.
At that time, any shortstop who hit nearly .300 on a contender was likely to get some MVP consideration. Ramirez’s range factors are pretty good, but as I’ve mentioned the Braves’ pitching staff was such that there’s a huge number of balls in play, mostly going to the infielders. He wasn’t a bad player exactly, but he was a C- fielder without any offensive pluses.