Biographical

Portrait of John Olerud

John Olerud 1BBlue Jays

Blue Jays Player Cards | Blue Jays Team Audit | Blue Jays Depth Chart

Career Summary
Years PA AVG OBP SLG DRC+ WARP
17 9063 .295 .398 .465 128 48.2
Birth Date8-5-1968
Height6' 5"
Weight205 lbs
Age51 years, 2 months, 15 days
BatsL
ThrowsL
WARP Summary

MLB Statistics

YEAR TEAM AGE G PA H 2B 3B HR BB SO HBP SB CS AVG OBP SLG DRC+ DRAA BRR FRAA BWARP
1989 TOR 20 6 8 3 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 .375 .375 .375 89 -0.1 0.0 0.4 0.0
1990 TOR 21 111 421 95 15 1 14 57 75 1 0 2 .265 .364 .430 113 6.3 -2.1 0.0 0.9
1991 TOR 22 139 541 116 30 1 17 68 84 6 0 2 .256 .353 .438 117 11.6 0.1 4.7 2.3
1992 TOR 23 138 537 130 28 0 16 70 61 1 1 0 .284 .375 .450 133 21.7 0.5 6.5 3.7
1993 TOR 24 158 679 200 54 2 24 114 65 7 0 2 .363 .473 .599 171 61.8 -4.8 6.1 7.1
1994 TOR 25 108 453 114 29 2 12 61 53 3 1 2 .297 .393 .477 119 12.8 -2.7 10.8 2.5
1995 TOR 26 135 581 143 32 0 8 84 54 4 0 0 .291 .398 .404 116 13.5 -1.2 -1.6 1.7
1996 TOR 27 125 469 109 25 0 18 60 37 10 1 0 .274 .382 .472 122 16.1 -2.1 4.2 2.3
1997 NYN 28 154 630 154 34 1 22 85 67 13 0 0 .294 .400 .489 132 28.3 -0.6 1.4 3.4
1998 NYN 29 160 665 197 36 4 22 96 73 4 2 2 .354 .447 .551 150 43.9 -4.4 20.4 6.3
1999 NYN 30 162 723 173 39 0 19 125 66 11 3 0 .298 .427 .463 133 35.2 -3.3 10.6 4.5
2000 SEA 31 159 683 161 45 0 14 102 96 4 0 2 .285 .392 .439 115 18.1 -2.2 8.2 3.0
2001 SEA 32 159 679 173 32 1 21 94 70 5 3 1 .302 .401 .472 135 33.3 -3.6 6.3 4.3
2002 SEA 33 154 668 166 39 0 22 98 66 5 0 0 .300 .403 .490 137 33.5 -3.4 0.8 3.8
2003 SEA 34 152 634 145 35 0 10 84 67 6 0 1 .269 .372 .390 109 9.2 -3.9 1.6 1.2
2004 NYA 35 49 188 46 7 0 4 21 20 2 0 0 .280 .367 .396 98 0.0 -0.5 -1.5 0.0
2004 SEA 35 78 312 64 13 1 5 40 41 6 0 0 .245 .354 .360 97 -0.7 -0.6 2.5 0.4
2005 BOS 36 87 192 50 7 0 7 16 20 0 0 0 .289 .344 .451 113 3.2 -0.5 3.5 0.9
Career2234906322395001325512751016881114.295.398.465128347.7-35.385.148.2

Statistics for All Levels

'opp' stats - Quality of opponents faced - have been moved and are available only as OPP_QUAL in the Statistics reports now.
Minor league stats are currently shownClick to hide.
YEAR Team Lg LG G PA oppAVG oppOBP oppSLG BABIP BPF BRAA repLVL POS_ADJ DRC+ DRC+ SD FRAA BRR DRAA BWARP
1989 TOR MLB AL 6 8 .251 .319 .392 .429 95 0.1 0.2 -0.1 89 10 0.4 0.0 -0.1 0.0
1990 TOR MLB AL 111 421 .258 .325 .385 .297 103 10.4 11.3 -7.2 113 9 0.0 -2.1 6.3 0.9
1991 TOR MLB AL 139 541 .259 .324 .391 .273 101 9.2 14.6 -9.2 117 14 4.7 0.1 11.6 2.3
1992 TOR MLB AL 138 537 .260 .325 .387 .294 101 20.2 13.9 -8.8 133 14 6.5 0.5 21.7 3.7
1993 TOR MLB AL 158 679 .271 .336 .416 .375 103 67.5 19.5 -12.5 171 8 6.1 -4.8 61.8 7.1
1994 TOR MLB AL 108 453 .274 .340 .435 .315 99 20.8 13.8 -8.7 119 10 10.8 -2.7 12.8 2.5
1995 TOR MLB AL 135 581 .271 .341 .431 .313 98 9.7 17.4 -11.1 116 10 -1.6 -1.2 13.5 1.7
1996 TOR MLB AL 125 469 .277 .347 .446 .265 98 14.9 14.5 -9 122 7 4.2 -2.1 16.1 2.3
1997 NYN MLB NL 154 630 .260 .326 .406 .298 99 34.4 16.8 -11.8 132 8 1.4 -0.6 28.3 3.4
1998 NYN MLB NL 160 665 .265 .332 .417 .373 95 61.5 17.3 -12.6 150 8 20.4 -4.4 43.9 6.3
1999 NYN MLB NL 162 723 .266 .337 .423 .307 97 41.5 19.6 -14.5 133 9 10.6 -3.3 35.2 4.5
2000 SEA MLB AL 159 683 .273 .345 .440 .316 84 35.8 21.5 -13.8 115 7 8.2 -2.2 18.1 3.0
2001 SEA MLB AL 159 679 .270 .332 .435 .311 94 37.2 20.2 -12.9 135 10 6.3 -3.6 33.3 4.3
2002 SEA MLB AL 154 668 .263 .331 .425 .302 94 44.1 19.3 -12.3 137 9 0.8 -3.4 33.5 3.8
2003 SEA MLB AL 152 634 .267 .335 .428 .290 98 4.8 17.3 -11.9 109 7 1.6 -3.9 9.2 1.2
2004 NYA MLB AL 49 188 .262 .327 .415 .298 105 -1.2 5.6 -3.6 98 8 -1.5 -0.5 0.0 0.0
2004 SEA MLB AL 78 312 .263 .330 .416 .269 102 -3.7 9.3 -5.9 97 8 2.5 -0.6 -0.7 0.4
2005 BOS MLB AL 87 192 .263 .333 .416 .289 106 1.7 5.5 -3.3 113 13 3.5 -0.5 3.2 0.9
2005 PAW AAA INT 3 12 .289 .347 .435 .250 91 0.8 0.3 -0.2 119 0 -0.1 0.1 0.3 0.0

Statistics For All Levels

Minor league stats are currently shownClick to hide.
Year Team lvl LG PA AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI BB SO SB CS AVG OBP SLG ISO SF SH
1989 TOR MLB AL 8 8 2 3 0 0 0 3 0 0 1 0 0 .375 .375 .375 .000 0 0
1990 TOR MLB AL 421 358 43 95 15 1 14 154 48 57 75 0 2 .265 .364 .430 .165 4 1
1991 TOR MLB AL 541 454 64 116 30 1 17 199 68 68 84 0 2 .256 .353 .438 .183 10 3
1992 TOR MLB AL 537 458 68 130 28 0 16 206 66 70 61 1 0 .284 .375 .450 .166 7 1
1993 TOR MLB AL 679 551 109 200 54 2 24 330 107 114 65 0 2 .363 .473 .599 .236 7 0
1994 TOR MLB AL 453 384 47 114 29 2 12 183 67 61 53 1 2 .297 .393 .477 .180 5 0
1995 TOR MLB AL 581 492 72 143 32 0 8 199 54 84 54 0 0 .291 .398 .404 .114 1 0
1996 TOR MLB AL 469 398 59 109 25 0 18 188 61 60 37 1 0 .274 .382 .472 .198 1 0
1997 NYN MLB NL 630 524 90 154 34 1 22 256 102 85 67 0 0 .294 .400 .489 .195 8 0
1998 NYN MLB NL 665 557 91 197 36 4 22 307 93 96 73 2 2 .354 .447 .551 .197 7 1
1999 NYN MLB NL 723 581 107 173 39 0 19 269 96 125 66 3 0 .298 .427 .463 .165 6 0
2000 SEA MLB AL 683 565 84 161 45 0 14 248 103 102 96 0 2 .285 .392 .439 .154 10 2
2001 SEA MLB AL 679 572 91 173 32 1 21 270 95 94 70 3 1 .302 .401 .472 .170 7 1
2002 SEA MLB AL 668 553 85 166 39 0 22 271 102 98 66 0 0 .300 .403 .490 .190 12 0
2003 SEA MLB AL 634 539 64 145 35 0 10 210 83 84 67 0 1 .269 .372 .390 .121 3 2
2004 NYA MLB AL 188 164 16 46 7 0 4 65 26 21 20 0 0 .280 .367 .396 .116 1 0
2004 SEA MLB AL 312 261 29 64 13 1 5 94 22 40 41 0 0 .245 .354 .360 .115 4 1
2005 PAW AAA INT 12 10 2 3 0 0 1 6 2 2 1 0 0 .300 .417 .600 .300 0 0
2005 BOS MLB AL 192 173 18 50 7 0 7 78 37 16 20 0 0 .289 .344 .451 .162 3 0

Plate Discipline

YEAR Pits Zone% Swing% Contact% Z-Swing% O-Swing% Z-Contact% O-Contact% SwStr% CSAA

Injury History  —  No longer being updated

Last Update: 12/31/2014 23:59 ET

Date On Date Off Transaction Days Games Side Body Part Injury Severity Surgery Date Reaggravation
2005-08-01 2005-08-16 15-DL 15 12 Left Thigh Strain Hamstring -

Compensation

Year Team Salary
2004 SEA $7,700,000
2003 SEA $7,700,000
2002 SEA $6,950,000
2001 SEA $6,700,000
2000 SEA $6,350,000
YearsDescriptionSalary
5 yrPrevious$35,400,000
5 yrTotal$35,400,000

 

Service TimeAgentContract Status
14 y 31 dJoe McIntosh

Details
  • retired 12/05
  • contract purchased 5/05 signed as a free agent from NYY 5/05 (minor-league contract) signed as a free agent from SEA 8/04 released 7/04 designated for assignment 7/04 re-signed 12/02
  • 2 year/$15.4M (03-04) 04:$7.7M
  • 3 year/$20M (00-02) 00:$6.35M, 01:$6.75M, 02:$6.95M
  • signed as a free agent from NYM after 99

2019 Preseason Forecast

Last Update: 1/27/2017 12:35 ET

PCT PA R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB CS AVG OBP SLG DRC+ VORP FRAA WARP
Weighted Mean???????00??.000.000.00000.0?0.0

Comparable Players (Similarity Index )

Rank Score Name Year DRC+ Trend

BP Annual Player Comments

YearComment
2006 Olerud was signed as insurance after Roberto Petagine got hurt in the spring, then spent much of the season out-hitting Millar. By the end of the season, Francona had finally seen the obvious, at which point Olerud stopped hitting. Now retired, Olerud finishes with a fine career line of .295/.398/.465 and 2239 career hits. There are first basemen in the Hall of Fame with lesser credentials than Olerud, including modern players like Orlando Cepeda and Tony Perez. In his prime, he hit for a high average with mid-range power and lots of walks, a devastating combination, but would have had a better reputation if his offensive skills were concentrated in just one area, like Tony Gwynn. Still, not bad for a player Cito Gaston said wouldn`t make it.
2005 Although his ALCS injury opened the door to Tony Clark throwing away some critical at-bats, Olerud's only advantage was his ability to make contact. If Clark was the flood and first base the dike, really anyone's little finger could have plugged that hole. Having hit like an underfed shortstop for two years, Olerud has little left to give. It will be a shame, though, if baseball loses its only player who can be seen emerging from the clubhouse shower wearing a towel and a batting helmet.
2004 Olerud's 2003 had to be horrifying for Mariners fans and front office execs alike. Having watched another patient first baseman without speed drop off the face of the earth in the late 80s, they've got to have the words "Alvin Davis" in the back of their minds. Olerud's power outage may be the scariest part of his 2003; it's hard to compete in a division like the AL West with a first baseman who can't mash. If Olerud can't bounce back, the Mariners will find it that much harder to take advantage of the vulnerability Oakland's chosen to take on at that particular position. Olerud's in the last year of his deal; his chances at the HoF and a big contract are highly dependent on his ability to rediscover about 20 extra-base hits.
2003 Olerud has one of the prettiest swings in baseball. Itís so effortless it doesnít attract attention. Olerud seems to swing through pitches, even the ones he drives 400 feet over a fence in dead-center field. Itís a measure of his power stroke that Olerud, indisputably one of the slowest men in baseball, still manages to hit so many doubles every year. Like Cameron, Olerud is a huge guesser. Heís willing to watch a pitch he didnít see coming all the way in for a strike so he can get another chance at it. Combined with his calm manner and easy swing, Olerud seems to be one of the most passive hitters in baseball, and idiots in the stands routinely yell for him to take the bat off his shoulders. Watch and learn: when the bat comes off the shoulder, the ballís pretty likely to go three hundred feet, and if youíve been good, itíll keep going. You want to see your first baseman whiff at everything? Move to Pittsburgh.
2002 Olerud is part of a class of unheralded players who have control of the strike zone, some power, and who play good defense but are not regarded as team leaders despite being quite valuable to a championship drive. He's never been the best at his position, but he pushes his teams towards pennants year after year.
2001 John Olerud was the biggest name among the six free agents Gillick signed for the 2000 season, inking a three-year deal for the bargain price of $20 million. He wasnít much above average offensively at his position, but the Gold Glove was legitimate. His 133 assists were 42 more than the next best AL first baseman, and nobody is better at turning the 3-6-3 double play. For some reason, I think Olerud has another .325 EqA performance lurking somewhere beneath that placid exterior.
2000 Olerud was again unable to sustain an MVP level of performance for consecutive years. 1999ís level, basically his career average, is fine. He might want to check out some contact lenses: he's hit much better in day games than at night for the last few years. Heís the Marinersí first baseman now; if they keep Griffey, Olerud might be enough to get them back to the postseason.
1999 An excellent season for the man Cito Gastonís venom canít touch any more. The Mets are probably expecting him to stay at this level, so when he drops back to his normal ('97) level, theyíll wonder what went wrong.
1998 Still underrated. His defense still looks great, heís got a good batting eye and a fluid stroke. Will probably hit like he did this year for a few more years; closest analog to him is probably a Harold Baines. At two years, $8 million, heís a tremendous bargain when compared to the likes of Eric Karros and Andres Galarraga.
1997 The scapegoat. Because of the memory of í93, the Blue Jays will forever be looking at him as a failure instead of a useful offensive player. Heís not much good against left-handed pitching, but heís basically Wally Joyner: a good defensive first baseman who gets on base. Given the number of teams that will waste their time on Gregg Jefferies or J.R. Phillips, that should be more than enough.
1996  The Jays best player, now that Alomar has left. He is, sometimes, a great hitter. However, Olerud has typically gotten off to really slow starts (except in 1993, when he outhit Frank Thomas), which have really hurt his year end stats. Last year he was Alfredo Griffinesque for three months and George Brett in his prime for three months. He plays pretty good defense. The major concern about John is his lack of power. He really tailed off last year and hit very few homeruns at home. To be a premier player, Olerud is going to have to bang about 20 dingers a year and hit 40+ doubles. He is capable of doing it.

For all of those fans who complain about loud mouthed egotistical ballplayers, take a look at John Olerud. You gotta love him!

BP Articles

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BP Chats

DateQuestionAnswer
2011-04-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)Steve, thanks for your time, as always. Question about Cito Gaston... I remember reading (before his return to the Blue Jays) some columnists and writers asking aloud why he never got a second job as a 2x World Series winner when so many other lesser managers did get recycled in baseball with a second team. Was he not that good manager? Did that mean teams in need mistakenly overlook him?
(Chris from Binghamton)
Bill James described Gaston as "strategically inert." He wrote out his lineup and then pretty much sat on the bench and enjoyed the best seat in the house. He also clashed with some key young players like (IIRC) John Olerud and Sean Green. I just don't think there was a lot to recommend him despite the two rings. (Steven Goldman)
2011-02-02 13:00:00 (link to chat)James Loney = Casey Kotchman? Daric Barton = John Olerud?
(Bob from Seattle)
I'll buy it in the broad strokes, though Olerud is a best-case outcome for Barton. Barton needs more batting helmet. (Ben Lindbergh)
2011-03-02 13:00:00 (link to chat)Thoughts on the SmoakMonster?
(Titus Welliver from The Island)
I keep going back to standards for first base when it comes to hitting, especially since expectations for Smoak were so high. If he winds up being somewhere between John Olerud and Lyle Overbay in the big picture, that isn't a bad regular, but it'll nevertheless disappoint some folks. (Christina Kahrl)
2011-01-05 13:00:00 (link to chat)Kevin Brown only got about 2% of the vote, and John Olerud got less than 1%. I know neither of them are clear choices...in fact, they're probably not Hall of Famers. But both are close enough that they deserved a few years of discussion, right?
(John from Atlanta)
I agree, but the precedent with guys like David Cone, Dwight Gooden, Orel Hershiser and Will Clark going one and done on the ballot certainly suggested this was a possibility. (Jay Jaffe)
2010-07-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)Take a look at my minor and MLB resume. I've never been able to hit HR's. I'm a plus defender who works the count and draws a lot of walks.
(Justin Smoak from On A Airplane)
Doesn't mean the power won't come. Can we at least upgrade Lyle Overbay to John Olerud? (Marc Normandin)
2010-01-28 14:00:00 (link to chat)Brett Wallace is the next...?
(Jquinton82 from NY)
Better than Lyle Overbay, but not quite John Olerud. (Christina Kahrl)
2010-01-06 13:00:00 (link to chat)So if the pitchers are an underwhelming lot, which interesting position players will we be talking about in one year?
(Grant from Nashville)
The top new position playing candidates are Jeff Bagwell, Rafael Palmeiro, John Olerud and Larry Walker. (Jay Jaffe)
2009-04-20 13:00:00 (link to chat)Will Clark and/or John Olerud for the HOF? I know Clark went off after one year, but I think he should have stayed on.
(Jon from SF)
Neither. (Joe Sheehan)
2009-02-16 14:00:00 (link to chat)To paraphrase Bo, "Brett Wallace knows hitting". Is it simply his complete inability to offer anything on defense that dropped him to #37?
(Paul from DC)
That played a big role certainly, but if he moves to first base, is he just John Olerud? Not that that is a bad thing, he's just not a 40-HR masher type. (Kevin Goldstein)
2008-06-04 16:00:00 (link to chat)Do you think we'll ever see another draft pick go straight to the majors without seeing any minor league action?
(SBE from Nashville)
It happens rarely -- see John Olerud. It could happen again. It's not happening this year. (Kevin Goldstein)


BP Roundtables

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