(This post was edited Monday, November 19, 2018, to correct an error in the Box-Toppers point total of Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom. During the 2018 season, an extra, unearned point was added to his total. There is more information about this at the bottom of the post.)
Mets pitcher Jason Vargas is Thursday’s Box-Toppers Player of the Day.
Top 10 playersHere are the top 10 players in Box-Toppers points (BTP) for the 2018 season through the games of Sept. 27:
|1||Snell, Blake 3688||pi sp||tb al||26.2|
|2||Scherzer, Max 2588||pi sp||dc nl||25.1|
|3||Verlander, Justin 2112||pi sp||hou al||22.1|
|4||Kluber, Corey 3200||pi sp||cle al||21.7|
|5||Sale, Chris 2806||pi sp||bos al||20.1|
|6||Nola, Aaron 3569||pi sp||phi nl||20.1|
|7||Carrasco, Carlos 2885||pi sp||cle al||18.1|
|8||Cole, Gerrit 3232||pi sp||hou al||18.0|
|9||Severino, Luis 3567||pi sp||nyy al||17.7|
|10||deGrom, Jacob 3343||pi sp||nym nl||16.8|
About Box-Toppers’ team abbreviations
Meanwhile, Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia becomes the fourth player to reach 200 career Box-Toppers points (since Box-Toppers tracking began in 1995) after earning American League Player of the Day honors Thursday.
Player of the Day—Vargas struck out six over seven scoreless innings, allowing three hits and no walks, in the 4-1 win over the Braves.
Vargas earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day, giving him 8.0 for the season, 34th among NL pitchers.
American League Player of the Day—Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia struck out five over five scoreless innings, allowing one hit and no walks, in the 12-1 win over the Rays.
All-time leadersHere are Box-Toppers top 20 players since record keeping began in 1995:
|1||Randy Johnson||pi sp||retired||278.8|
|2||Pedro Martinez||pi sp||retired||244.8|
|3||Clayton Kershaw||pi sp||lad nl||214.8|
|4||CC Sabathia||pi sp||nyy al||200.4|
|5||Curt Schilling||pi sp||retired||194.1|
|6||Albert Pujols||1b dh||ana al||190.8|
|7||Zack Greinke||pi sp||ari nl||189.2|
|9||Max Scherzer||pi sp||dc nl||181.8|
|10||Justin Verlander||pi sp||hou al||176.1|
|11||Felix Hernandez||pi sp||sea al||174.1|
|12||Roy Halladay||pi sp||retired||170.7|
|13||Manny Ramirez||lf dh||retired||167.2|
|14||Johan Santana||pi sp||free agent||166.6|
|15||Roger Clemens||pi sp||retired||164.8|
|16||Jon Lester||pi sp||chi nl||164.6|
|17||Cole Hamels||pi sp||chi nl||164.5|
|18||John Smoltz||pi sp||retired||160.9|
|19||Tim Hudson||pi sp||retired||157.0|
|20||Bartolo Colon||pi sp||tex al||155.9|
About Box-Toppers’ team abbreviations
List of top 100 players since 1995 at the end of the 2017 season.
Sabathia earns 1.7 Box-Toppers points for being AL Player of the Day, giving him 200.4 career points. In Box-Toppers’ 24th season of player tracking, Sabathia is just the fourth player to reach the 200-point milestone, behind Randy Johnson (278.8), Pedro Martinez (244.8) and Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw (214.8).
Sabathia now has 7.7 Box-Toppers points on the season, 34th among AL pitchers. His 7.7 points this season matches his total from 2017, which is the most points he’s had in a season since 2012, when he had 15.1 with the Yankees, eighth among AL pitchers.
American League Batter of the Day—Willians Astudillo of the Twins doubled and went 2-for-4, scoring once and driving in four runs, in the 9-3 win over the Tigers.
This was Astudillo’s Box-Toppers debut, the first time in his career he earned Player of the Game honors. Astudillo made his Major League debut June 30 and was playing in his 26th career game.
National League Batter of the Day—There is no separate NL Batter of the Day for Thursday because no NL batter earned Player of the Game honors.
Notable—Cubs pitcher Jon Lester has the most 2018 Box-Toppers points among the seven who earned Player of the Game honors Thursday.
Lester (6IP 3H 0R 4BB 3K W in the 3-0 win over the Pirates) earns 1.0 Box-Toppers point, giving him 10.7 for the season, 38th among all players and 19th among NL pitchers.
Lester becomes the 50th player this season with 10 or more Box-Toppers points. It is his 10th season with 10 or more points and his sixth straight season. He matches his 2017 total of 10.7 points with the Cubs.
Lester now also has 164.6 career Box-Toppers points, rising to 16th place among all players since 1995, when Box-Toppers tracking began. With his point Thursday, he passes teammate Cole Hamels (164.5) on the “all-time” list and now trails 15th-ranked player Roger Clemens (164.8). (It should be noted that Clemens would have an estimated 320 Box-Toppers points if his entire career from 1984 were tracked.) Passing Hamels, Lester now ranks eighth among active players in career points.
Debut—Rangers pitcher Ariel Jurado made his Box-Toppers debut Thursday with his first career Player of the Game honor.
Jurado (6IP 2H 0R 0BB 3K W in the 2-0 win over the Mariners) made his Major League debut May 19 and was playing in his 12th career game.
Team and player rankings—Box-Toppers weekly team and player rankings reports are normally posted on Fridays. But since it is so close to the end of the season (with final regular season games this weekend), there will be no weekly reports posted today, Friday, Sept. 28. Instead the weekly team and player reports will be posted after the regular season final games, most likely on Monday, Oct. 1.
Scoring—Vargas earns 2.0 Box-Toppers points for being Player of the Day and Sabathia earns 1.7 points for being AL Player of the Day. Astudillo earns 1.5 points for being AL Batter of the Day. All of Thursday’s other Players of the Game (listed in the chart below) earn 1.0 Box-Toppers point.
About Box-Toppers—Box-Toppers tracks who most helps their team win the most games. Using standard box score statistics, Box-Toppers uses a simple formula to determine a Player of the Game for each Major League Baseball game played. That player is the person who contributed most to his team’s win. In regular season games, players earn 1.0 Box-Toppers point for being named Player of the Game and can earn bonus points for being Player of the Day or top player or batter in their league for the day.
Box-Toppers strives for accuracy. See a mistake in a post? A wrong name, wrong team, grammar error, spelling goof, etc.? Thanks for pointing it out! Contact Box-Toppers here. Let's fix it and make it right.
NOTE ABOUT JACOB DEGROM: After this post was published, Box-Toppers discovered an error: Jacob deGrom was credited with 1.0 more Box-Toppers point than he actually earned in 2018. This post has been changed to include deGrom’s actual Box-Toppers point total and player ranking position at the time of this post. Subtracting a point from deGrom’s season total meant he had 16.8 Box-Toppers points, rather than 17.8. Despite the change, he still finished third among National League pitchers. However, the change moves him from ninth place to 12th place in overall season player rankings, moving him out of the top 10 and keeping Yankees pitcher Luis Severino (17.7 points) in the top 10 for the season, in 10th place.
This is made all the more odd and awkward because the error was discovered while compiling the post about deGrom winning the NL Cy Young Award on Wednesday, Nov. 14. deGrom was the near-unanimous choice for the award, but even with his higher, incorrect Box-Toppers point total (17.8), Box-Toppers had him ranked third among NL pitchers, needing nearly 50 percent more points to catch the NL pitching leader, Max Scherzer of the Nationals (25.1).
My post was about how Scherzer was more deserving of the award than the widely acclaimed deGrom because Scherzer actually helped his team win more games. Despite deGrom’s great performances, the Mets lost most of the games he pitched. Since winning is the name of the game and since Box-Toppers points are only awarded in wins, deGrom’s point total was far lower—but it was still remarkable, given all the losses, that he reached as high as third place among NL pitchers. While writing about how deGrom wasn’t as deserving of the award, I found the error (the extra point), and correcting the record (subtracting the point), I found he was even more undeserving.
Top player from each gameListed from highest to lowest Box-Toppers game score (BTG)
|MLB||+10.0||NYM 4, ATL 1||Jason Vargas (W, 7‑9)||‑||‑||‑||‑||7.0||3||0||0||0||6|
|AL||+9.0||NYY 12, TB 1||CC Sabathia (W, 9‑7)||‑||‑||‑||‑||5.0||1||0||0||0||5|
|+7.0||TEX 2, SEA 0||Ariel Jurado (W, 5‑5)||‑||‑||‑||‑||6.0||2||0||0||0||3|
|+4.1||COL 5, PHI 3||Scott Oberg (W, 8‑1)||‑||‑||‑||‑||1.1||0||0||0||0||3|
|BAT||+3.0||MIN 9, DET 3||Willians Astudillo C||4||1||2||4||‑||‑||‑||‑||‑||‑|
|+2.0||CHC 3, PIT 0||Jon Lester (W, 18‑6)||‑||‑||‑||‑||6.0||3||0||0||4||3|
|0.0||KC 2, CLE 1 (F/10)||Adalberto Mondesi SS||4||2||1||1||‑||‑||‑||‑||‑||‑|
AL—Overall American League Player of the Day, worth 1.7 total Box-Toppers points.
NL—Overall National League Player of the Day, worth 1.7 total Box-Toppers points.
BAT—Top AL or NL Batter of the Day, worth 1.5 total Box-Toppers points.
All other players listed here earn Player of the Game honors, worth 1.0 Box-Toppers point.
` Pitcher had a no-decision in the game and did not pick up a win or a save.
Box-Toppers point totals of the day’s top playersHere are Box-Toppers point totals of each of the Player of the Game winners. Players are ranked by their Box-Toppers point total for the current season (’18). Also shown are each players’ Box-Toppers point total for this season and last (’17-18), the period 2013-2018 (’13-18) and each players’ career point total. Also shown is how their 2018 Box-Toppers point total compares with their 2017 total (+/-).
|Player of the Game||Pos||Team||’18||’17‑18||’13‑18||Career||+/‑|
|Lester, Jon 2173||pi sp||chi nl||10.7||21.4||84.6||164.6||0.0|
|Vargas, Jason 2055||pi sp||nym nl||8.0||19.0||36.7||66.2||-3.0|
|Sabathia, C.C. 1492||pi sp||nyy al||7.7||15.4||32.8||200.4||0.0|
|Oberg, Scott 4024||pi mr||col nl||4.0||4.0||4.0||4.0||+4.0|
|Mondesi, Adalberto 3750||ss||kc al||2.0||2.0||3.0||3.0||+2.0|
|Astudillo, Willians 4090||ca||min al||1.5||1.5||1.5||1.5||+1.5|
|Jurado, Ariel 4089||pi sp||tex al||1.0||1.0||1.0||1.0||+1.0|
About Box-Toppers’ team abbreviations
Tracking who most helps their teams win the most games, based on box score stats. A method to measure & compare baseball's top players.
Box-Toppers tracks who most helps their team win the most games. Using standard box score statistics, Box-Toppers uses a simple formula to determine a Player of the Game for each Major League Baseball game played. That player is the person who contributed most to his team’s win. Players earn Box-Toppers points for being named Player of the Game and can earn bonus points for being Player of the Day or top player or batter in their league for the day.