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April 6, 2000

Team of the Decade Outfield

Your choices for the outfielders of the 1990s

by Dave Pease and Greg Spira

Late in 1999, we asked our readers to give us their picks for baseball's Team of the 1990s. More than 1,000 people voted in the poll, held over three months, and the results have been tabulated. The outfielders and designated hitter for the Team of the 1990s are:

Left Field

Very little surprise here, as Barry Bonds walks away with an easy win in left field. Bonds's career arc has been perfect for a competition of this type; his first truly great season was in 1990, and we probably haven't seen his last one yet. Rickey Henderson, on the other hand, was doing some of his best work when we were accepting votes for the Baseball Prospectus Team of the 1980s, which hurts him here.

Player Name        Points
Barry Bonds           884
Rickey Henderson       51
Albert Belle           27
Moises Alou             6
Greg Vaughn             4
Tim Raines              3
Marty Cordova           2
Dan Gladden             2
Mike Greenwell          2
Candy Maldonado         2
Troy O'Leary            2
B.J. Surhoff            2
Mark Carreon            1
Luis Gonzalez           1
Rusty Greer             1
Al Martin               1
Derrick May             1
Kevin McReynolds        1
Henry Rodriguez         1
TOTAL                 994

Center Field

This one wasn't too difficult either, as Ken Griffey takes 90% of the ballots to win the starting spot on the team. As with Bonds, Griffey's career fits well in the framework of this competition; in this case, Bernie Williams's career didn't really take off until 1994, and Kirby Puckett was out of baseball by 1996.

Player Name        Points
Ken Griffey Jr.       797
Bernie Williams        21
Kirby Puckett          20
Kenny Lofton           13
Brady Anderson          3
Eric Davis              3
Lenny Dykstra           3
Carl Everett            3
Andruw Jones            3
Ray Lankford            3
Brett Butler            2
Doug Glanville          2
Robin Yount             2
Chad Curtis             1
Mike Devereaux          1
Jim Edmonds             1
Billy Hatcher           1
Lance Johnson           1
Andy Van Slyke          1
Devon White             1
Rondell White           1
TOTAL                 883

Right Field

Ahhh, finally some competition. Four players ended up in the triple digits in right field, and in the end it came down to the two players who have accounted for the last six National League batting titles between them. Tony Gwynn ended up with a slim victory over Larry Walker; Gwynn was entering his prime when Walker was just getting started, which helped him combat Walker's big finish. Juan Gonzalez finished in third place despite nearly outhomering Gwynn and Walker combined, and Sammy Sosa got exactly 100 votes to finish fourth.

Player Name        Points
Tony Gwynn            243
Larry Walker          231
Juan Gonzalez         141
Sammy Sosa            100
Manny Ramirez          35
Paul O'Neill           32
Gary Sheffield         22
Jose Canseco           12
Tim Salmon             11
Joe Carter             10
Raul Mondesi            5
Vladimir Guerrero       4
David Justice           4
Willie McGee            4
Andre Dawson            3
Bobby Bonilla           2
Rob Deer                2
Kevin Bass              1
Derek Bell              1
Dante Bichette          1
Darren Bragg            1
Tom Brunansky           1
Jay Buhner              1
Shawn Green             1
Bob Higginson           1
Joe Orsulak             1
Cory Snyder             1
Matt Stairs             1
Darryl Strawberry       1
TOTAL                 873

Designated Hitter

The ageless Harold Baines did his best to make this a race, but Edgar Martinez overcame injury woes in 1993 and 1994 to easily rank as the best DH of the 1990s.

Player Name        Points
Edgar Martinez        519
Harold Baines         115
Paul Molitor           92
Chili Davis            18
Dave Winfield           8
George Brett            5
Brian Downing           4
Jack Clark              3
George Bell             2
Geronimo Berroa         2
Kirk Gibson             1
TOTAL                 769

Dave Pease is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Dave's other articles. You can contact Dave by clicking here

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2000-10-02 - Team Of The Decade
2000-05-08 - NL West Notebook
2000-04-13 - NL West Notebook
2000-04-06 - Team of the Decade Outfield
2000-03-17 - NL West Notebook
2000-03-08 - Team of the Decade Infield
2000-01-24 - NL West Notebook