While Ryan Howards tenure as arguably “the best player in baseball” was not long, it was warranted. Ryan Howard came in to the majors in 2005 and promptly won the Rookie of The Year award. He followed that up by winning the National League MVP award the very next year. He is one of 20 players to have won both awards and one of only five to do so in a two year span along with HOF’er Cal Ripken and future HOF’er Ichiro Suzuki.
Ryan Howard also finished in the top ten for MVP voting for the next five years. For his first six years in the league, Howard hit a ridiculous 251 home runs and maintained a .945 OPS. Also among his accomplishments is the most home runs in the National League from 2006-2016 (358) and the fastest player ever to 100 home runs. 358.
Ryan Howard may not have had the longest career but through his six-year prime he was dominant to an extent that is rarely seen in the Majors.