In the second installment of 5-year WAR leaders since 1961, this post looks at players in outfield and DH positions. The methodology is to determine bWAR leaders for each year based on cumulative 5-year bWAR ending in that year. To qualify for the leader board, players must play 75% of their games in the period at the indicated position.
So, here are the 5-year WAR leaders. Scroll through the list or search for specific players or years using the Search bar.
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Barry Bonds was the LF leader his entire career, starting from his 5th year all the way through to the year after his retirement. Bonds’ WAR for that final year as leader really represented just 3 seasons as Bonds was injured almost all of the 2005 season. Even so, Bonds still managed 0.4 WAR in just 14 games that year.
WAR accumulation in RF has taken quite a hit in recent years. None of the last three 5-year leaders managed even 20 WAR over 5 years.
Qualifiers for DH under the 75% rule are fairly limited most years. Thus, Frank Robinson is the leader for the first 5 years, despite playing only four of those seasons, and playing regularly in only two. Similarly, Don Baylor remained the 5 year WAR leader 2 years after his retirement.
In the next installment are Pitchers and Catchers, plus the Overall 5 year WAR leaders among all position players.