Peak Pedro

Pedro_Martinez_ERAData via Baseball-Reference; shows qualifying pitchers only

Pedro Martinez, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame on Sunday, was unparalleled at his peak. After joining the American League in 1998, Martinez threw enough innings to qualify for the ERA title six times; he finished first in four of those years and second in a fifth. Only twice since 1995 has a pitcher led the field in ERA by at least 1.00: Martinez in 1999 (by 1.37), and Martinez in 2000 (by 1.96).

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A Hall of Fame Class for the Ages

Hall_of_Fame_inductees_JAWS_2015Data via

Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Craig Biggio will all be inducted into the Hall of Fame this weekend, composing one of the most memorable classes of recent years. Per JAWS, a metric that combines career and peak value to measure Hall of Fame worthiness, Johnson and Martinez are the first two players with scores of 70+ to be inducted simultaneously since Hank Aaron and Frank Robinson in 1982. (The average Hall of Fame player generally has a score around 55.) The above chart shows JAWS scores for all players elected by the BBWAA since the modern era of voting began in 1966.

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Hall of Famers by Scrabble score


Carl YASTRZEMSKI, not surprisingly, tops the list of Hall of Fame baseball players in Scrabble value, with a last name worth 29 points. (These scores ignore bonuses and tile constraints, and only counts people who made the Hall of Fame as players — sorry, writer Henry CHADWICK and manager Bill MCKECHNIE.) On the other end of the list, six players have surnames worth five points, including Hank AARON, but the lowest-scoring name is crossword puzzle star Mel OTT, at just three points.

For those who prefer the slightly different Words With Friends scoring, the top four names are unchanged, but Willie MCCOVEY, Ferguson JENKINS, Roy CAMPANELLA and Hugh JENNINGS leapfrog FOXX, KOUFAX and MCCARTHY into the top 10.

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