The MLB’s leaders from the last 365 days

Every few days I like to go to Fangraphs.com and check out their leaderboards just to see anything catches my eye. One of my favorite things to do is look at the last 365 days to see if there are any players I wouldn’t expect to see. I thought it would be a fun idea for an article to check out some of the leaders of different stats as well as see any unexpected players near the top.

Offensive Stat Leaders Over the Last 365 Days (Min. 500 PA)

  Player Stat
HR Khris Davis 44
R Charlie Blackmon 146
RBI Nolan Arenado 149
SB Billy Hamilton 67
BB% Mike Trout 18.3
K% Miguel Sano 35.7
BA DJ Lemahieu 0.345
OBP Mike Trout 0.463
SLG Freddie Freeman 0.661
wOBA Mike Trout/Freddie Freeman 0.449
wRC+ Mike Trout 192
fWAR Mike Trout 7.7
H Charlie Blackmon 218
2B Jose Ramirez 55
3B Charlie Blackmon 16
BB Paul Goldschmidt 112
K Miguel Sano 213
GIDP Matt Kemp 31
  • Of course, we see a familiar name at the top of a few major categories, with Mike Trout leading in OBP, BB%, tied with Freeman in wOBA, then wRC+, and fWAR.
  • The next player to appear multiple times as a leader is Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon. Over the last couple of years, Blackmon has emerged as a little-talked about star in Colorado. For this list, he leads in Runs, Hits, and Triples. The funny thing about this to me is that while he only leads in hits by 1 over Jose Altuve, he has a massive lead in Runs by 20 over Paul Goldschmidt and 7 more triples than his Rockies teammate Noland Arenado. Perhaps the triples thing is a Coors Field thing, but still impressive none the less
  • The other two players to appear on this list multiple times do so for very different reasons. Miguel Sano leads in K% and overall Strikeouts, while Freddie Freeman is tied for the wOBA lead with Mike Trout and leads overall in Slugging Percentage at an incredible .661. It really is a shame that both Trout and Freeman had to miss any time to injuries this season.
  • From there we have players who only appear on the list once each. Khris Davis leads in Home Runs over the last 365 days at 44, just 3 ahead of guess who: Charlie Blackmon.
  • Nolan Arenado leads in Runs Batted In by a whopping 32 over second place Joey Votto. It seems Blackmon and Arenado are really helping each other’s stats.
  • Billy Hamilton leads in Stolen Bases, however, Dee Gordon is just 4 back and Trea Turner only 7 back. I can’t remember the last time 3 guys had 60 or more stolen bases in a season. With nearly two months remaining, Hamilton has 44, Gordon has 40, and Turner has 35. We could see it this season.
  • 2016’s NL batting champ DJ Lemahieu is hitting well once again this season, holding that Batting Average steady 4 points higher than Jose Altuve.
  • The amazingly impressive Jose Ramirez leads all players in Doubles, and it’s still hard to believe he’s become this good this quickly. He was really good last season, but turned it up to another gear this season. His stats are really fun.
  • Paul Goldschmidt leads in Walks, which is something I thought Joey Votto would have led in, but he sits 3 back. One thing I was shocked to see was Brandon Belt sitting 9 back with 103 Walks. If Belt could hit .280 consistently with his other skills, he’d go from a good player to a great one.
  • Finally we end with a stat that no one walks to hold, which is the leader in Grounded Into Double Plays. Matt Kemp not only leads with 31, but leads by 7 over his competition. It sure has been a while since he stole 40 bases in 2011.

Next up we’ve got the pitchers:

Pitching Stat Leaders Over the Last 365 Days (Min. 100 IP for SP)

Player Stat
W Max Scherzer 21
L Ricky Nolasco 18
SV Kenley Jansen/Alex Colome 44
IP Chris Sale 241
K/9 Max Scherzer 11.87
BB/9 Ivan Nova 0.89
HR/9 James Shields 2.73
LOB% Clayton Kershaw 88.9
GB% Dallas Keuchel 64.10%
ERA Clayton Kershaw 1.91
FIP James Paxton 2.35
xFIP Clayton Kershaw 2.76
fWAR Chris Sale 8.9
H Rick Porcello 234
HR Ariel Miranda 39
K Chris Sale 316
BB Robbie Ray 84
WP Jake Arrieta/Mike Fiers 19
HBP Jose Urena 14
  • Just to start off with, we see two star pitchers on this list leading three categories each. Chris Sale leads in Innings Pitched, fWAR, and Strikeouts. Chris Sale has been so amazing great the last 365 days, he has just dwarfed all other pitchers in value in that time. He leads in fWAR by more than 2 wins over the number two pitcher, Max Scherzer. He has 15 more Innings Pitched than Scherzer as well. Then he leads Max Scherzer yet again in Strikeouts by 18. When you see someone doing that much better than Max Scherzer, you know they are amazing.
  • Clayton Kershaw only has 169.1 Innings Pitched in the last 365 days thanks to two different back injuries, but still has a very sizeable lead in ERA, Left On Base Percentage, and xFIP. He leads in ERA over Dodgers teammate Alex Wood (though in only 102.1 IP) by nearly 0.40 points. He leads in LOB% over Dallas Keuchel by nearly 5%. Then he leads in xFIP yet again over Alex Wood by 0.06 points, then Chris Sale by 0.15 points. The injuries have cost him innings and chances at categories like Strikeouts or fWAR, but he has still been the same old Clayton Kershaw, minus a random Home Run spike early this season.
  • Next up we’ve got Max Scherzer leading two categories, though as mentioned earlier he’s second to Sale in three major categories other than the following two. Scherzer leads in wins with 21, next closest is Kenta Maeda and Dylan Bundy at 17. Then he leads in K/9 at 11.87, just ahead of Sale at 11.80.
  • In the only category on this list to include relievers, Kenley Jansen and Alex Colome tied with the saves lead at 44. I thought this felt a bit low, but 44 saves is tied for 23rd since 2010, and there have only been five 50 or higher save seasons since then as well.
  • When looking at BB/9 leads, Nova leads the list norrowly over Josh Tomlin, then we see Rick Porcello, Kershaw, and Sale a bit after. If Nova could cut his HR down or up his K/9 he would turn into a really good pitcher. For now, he’s a pretty good pitcher and great control artist.
  • Dallas Keuchel leads in Ground Ball Percentage, which isn’t a real surprise. What is a bit surprising is his teammate Lance McCullers just a hair behind him at 63%.
  • Now we are getting into the categories that no one wants to lead in. For most of these, I took the highest amount rather than the lowest amount allowed because I put the minimum innings down to 100.
  • Ricky Nolasco has had a lot of troubles with Home Runs allowed the last 365 days, sitting at 35 allowed. Shockingly, that does not lead the MLB in that time. However, he does lead in Losses, with 2 more than last year’s AL Cy Young winner Rick Porcello.
  • The man that does lead in Home Runs allowed is Mariners pitcher Ariel Miranda with 39 Home Runs. This numbers looks frighteningly alarming, but would only be tied for 8th most allowed since the start of 2000. So it could always be worse, I suppose.
  • Despite not leading in Home Runs allowed, James Shields has the highest HR/9 allowed at just a bit under 3 HR/9. He only has in the mid 20s in starts in that time, which is the only thing saving him from leading both of those categories here.
  • As far as Walks issued, Robbie Ray narrowly edges out Tyler Chatwood by 1 and another fellow NL West pitcher Matt Moore by 3 Walks. Despite leading the league in walks, Ray has been a strikeout machine with 226 Strikeouts and has a 3.84 ERA. Ray is pretty wild, but gets results
  • Speaking of wild, Jake Arrieta and Mike Fiers are tied for the lead in Wild Pitches with 19. The next closest to the pair is Ervin Santana with 15, and then knuckleball pitcher RA Dickey with 14. When you are that much more wild than a knuckleball pitcher, it may be time to re-evaluate.
  • Lastly, we’ve got the leader in HBP, bruising 14 batters in the last 365 days. I’m unsure if he’s wild or there are just a lot of people he doesn’t like, but he leads the pack. Up next are Chris Sale and John Lackey. Sale has likely had some sliders get away from him. Lackey probably just didn’t like how some of these guys looked at him and decided to teach them a lesson. That seems like something Lackey might do.

Overall we see a lot of familiar names at the top of some of these leaderboards, but it was interesting to see some that I would not expect and some others just below the leaders.