Since we don’t exactly have teams to rank (which we usually do by now), and I have the wiffle itch, I’m making up some power rankings. So I’m going to rank the top ten OCWA players (using stats!). In order to qualify a player would have to play in at least a season’s worth of games. We will start with number ten.
10.) Brett Bigler
Career Stats: .556 AVG, 25 HR, 109 RBI, 6-1, 30 K, 8.69 ERA
The list starts with my traveling teammate Brett Bigler. He possesses the all-time highest batting average and is the only player to have a career average over .500. The reason he sits at ten on this list is because before he joined the Freaky Franchise he had very little experience. He has blossomed into a powerful two-way player, and if this list continues into next year, he should rise up this list. He is a triple OCWA champion and a one-time Opening Day Tournament champion.
9.) Nate St. Ours
Career Stats: .306 AVG, 25 HR, 204 RBI, 15-11, 137 K, 10.04 ERA
Despite St. Ours’ one-year hiatus in 2012, he still ranks among the top players of all time. Before his hiatus he was an absolute force on the mound, and he showed some of that magic last season. He has the sixth most wins and fourth most strikeouts of all-time. His average is below the league average, but he hits the occasional home run, and is very good at driving in runs, as he sits seventh all-time in RBI’s. He is still a free agent heading into this season, and could provide smart play to any team he lands on. He has won one OCWA championship and two Opening Day Tournaments.
8.) Dave Erb
Career Stats: .399 AVG, 69 HR, 243 RBI, 11-14, 50 K, 11.19 ERA
Dave Erb is an offensive force. He ranks third in both career home runs and RBI’s. The lefty rarely touches the ball without getting lift and distance on it. He also hits just a shade below .400, which in the OCWA is a good mark to hit. His pitching leaves something to be desired, he’s one of two players on this list with a losing record and his ERA is high. But if he goes to a team where he won’t have to pitch, his bat will power that team through many games.
7.) Chris Sacheli
Career Stats: .432 AVG, 33 HR, 193 RBI, 13-12, 50 K, 8.44 ERA
Chris Sacheli is one of the best-rounded players in the league. Want proof? He ranks eighth or ninth all-time in every triple crown category. What is more impressive is his ability to get extra base hits. He ranks first all-time in triples and fifth all-time in doubles. His pitching is above average. He has a winning record, a good number of strikeouts, and an above average ERA. If he improves his pitching slightly, he moves up this list.
6.) Josh Maves
Career Stats: .413 AVG, 54 HR, 187 RBI, 14-17, 101 K, 7.55 ERA
Another guy that goes the way of Brett Bigler, Maves is a stud who just doesn’t have enough experience. He tends to take every other year off. In 2010, he was an All-Star, and in 2010, he gave Ryan Bush a run for the MVP title. He is the other player on this list with a losing record, but that’s due more to him being on a bad team in 2010 than his pitching struggles. He ranks fourth in home runs and fifth in strikeouts. Given that this is the next year in his line of monster years, he is due to move up this list.
5.) Justin Tomkins
Career Stats: .368 AVG, 41 HR, 208 RBI, 25-9, 66 K, 8.33 ERA
The commish is ranked fifth on this list purely because he has a volume to his game. He ranks in the sixth in career home runs and fifth in career RBI’s. He also ranks in the top ten in strikeouts and ERA. Despite these accomplishments, his greatest asset is his ability to win games despite giving up runs. He ranks first all-time in wins as a starting pitcher, and has an insane 25-9 record, which is astounding given the fact that his career ERA is 8.33. He also has a knack for winning games in tournaments, as he has won four Opening Day Tournaments and three OCWA championships.
4.) BJ Turner
Career Stats: .484 AVG, 43 HR, 182 RBI, 7-6, 79 K, 6.45 ERA
Given the fact that Turner essentially took two years off of wiffleball, it is incredible that he still ranks among the best in the league. His .484 average ranks second all-time, while he also sits fifth in career home runs. After his two seasons off, one due to league suspension and the other due to knee surgery, he hasn’t quite been the same player he once was. Still, his pitching numbers are quite good as he still ranks sixth and fifth in strikeouts and ERA, respectively. He rejoins his former teammate Chris Roeder this year and could provide the piece they needed to win a championship.
3.) Doug Bush
Career Stats: .343 AVG, 40 HR, 222 RBI, 21-7, 149 K, 4.54 ERA
Now we have reached the upper echelon of pitchers, which leads to wins in the OCWA. Papa Bush is a crafty player. He is a sneakily good batter and a rock solid pitcher. His average leaves something to be desired, but he’s just out of the top five in home runs and sits fourth in career RBI. But what really puts him at the top of this list is his pitching. On the mound he can’t be stopped. He ranks third all-time in strikeouts and ERA, and is tied for third in wins. He was really one of the first power pitchers in the league, and showed his dominance by winning two Opening Day Tournaments and one OCWA championship.
2.) Chris Roeder
Career Stats: .483 AVG, 112 HR, 388 RBI, 21-4, 223 K, 2.59 ERA
Chris Roeder is the bright new star of the league, but it took a few years of getting used to. His pitching has come a long way, as he has won Pitcher of the Year the last two seasons. Still, he ranks second on this list. His numbers are ridiculous. He is tied for third in wins, but has the best winning percentage among veteran starters. He is third in batting average, sitting just .0006 points behind teammate BJ Turner. He ranks second in every other major category, and is the second player to break milestones such as 100 homers, 300 RBI, 200 K, and having a sub-3 ERA. His pitching numbers in recent years have been even more ridiculous, as he had had sub-1 ERA’s over the past two seasons.
1.) Ryan Bush
Career Stats: .475 AVG, 138 HR, 480 RBI, 24-6, 389 K, 2.10 ERA
Ryan Bush is the gold standard of OCWA players. He has racked up awards, both within the league and on the national stage. His batting average ranks fourth and he sits only one win behind teammate Justin Tomkins for the all-time lead. He has the highest marks in every other category. He will be the first player to hit 500 RBI, the first to 400 K, and has Roeder beaten out on homers and ERA, although Roeder has closed the gap in recent years. This guy is the definition of a power player, as he is dangerous no matter what side of the field he’s on. He’s also the winningest player in OCWA history, and has three Opening Day Tournament championships and four straight OCWA championships on his resume.