No. 2: Pete Alexander’s 1915 Season
Alexander’s 1917 season seems rather pedestrian when you compare it to his season two years earlier. He racked up 9.6 fWAR in 1915, besting any other pitcher by a full win.
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Alexander appeared in 49 games that year, making 42 starts. He topped the leaderboards in wins (31), ERA (1.22), complete games (36), shutouts (12), strikeouts (241), and strikeout-to-walk ratio (3.77). Alexander also led the league in WHIP (0.842), hits-per-nine innings (6.1), and strikeouts-per-nine (5.8). He also made three saves just for funsies.
Thanks in part to Alexander’s stellar pitching, the Phillies appeared in their first World Series in 1915. Unfortunately, they fell to Babe Ruth’s Red Sox and fans had to wait another 65 years for the first Phillies World Series win.
Once again, Alexander did lead all pitchers in fWAR, and once again Ty Cobb topped him in the overall rankings as he earned 9.8 fWAR in 1915. As mentioned earlier, the short-lived Chalmers ceased to exist in 1914, so we will never know who would have been picked as the more valuable player.