Ranking the Shortstops
The 1990's and early 2000's were the time of the shortstops. No longer were they just slick fielders. They became middle of the order hitters and MVP's, Alex Rodriquez, Derek Jeter,Nomar Garciaparra, Miguel Tejeda, and Barry Larkin lead the way. In 2003, the New York Yankee traded for A Rod putting but he and Jeter on the same team, thus hurting his chances at becoming the greatest shortstop in the games history.
The White Sox have had three shortstops who've played at least 1,500 games for them: Luke Appling, Ozzie Guillen, and Luis Aparicio... Brooklyn's Pee Wee Reese received MVP votes in 13 of his 16 seasons... Joe Tinker is one of just three Hall of Famers who died on his birthday.
Whether he was wearing a raincoat on the field, playing pranks on his teammates, or pantomiming the motion of his pitcher, Rabbit Maranville was always entertaining on the field. He wasn't too shabby with the glove either, which led him to the Hall of Fame.
"It will take Alan a couple of years to get everything together, and when he does he'll control the game. The great shortstops all control the game."
— Sparky Anderson, 1980 on Alan Trammell
The Negro Leagues had several great short stops. When they talked about Willie, it was not Mays but Willie Wells, a 5 tool star during his career. John Pop Llyod as also outstanding.
Best of the Unranked
Herman Long - A ferocious competitor who searched for every advantage to beat his opponents, shortstop Herman Long was the field leader for the Boston Beaneaters in the 1890s, when the talented team won five National League titles. Most likely the best dfensive shortstop of the 19th century, Long amazed fans with his off-balance throws and acrobatic moves, which had been rarely seen before on the diamond. A formidable batter as well, Long's 12 homers led the NL in 1900, and he hit .300 four times and scored as many as 100 runs seven times.
Shawon Dunston - Dunston the first overall pick in 1982 draft, was a rock arm shortstop who pilled up over 200 steals and made multiple all star apperances. His plate discipline lead him to a record of the least amount of walks in a season in 1997, 2 total in 255 plate apperances.
Monte Ward - Monte Ward is remembered for his integrity, but he was also a talented player. As a pitcher for Providence, he won 47 games in 1879 and 40 the next year, including the second perfect game in NL history. When his arm gave out he switched to shortstop and helped the New York Giants win pennants in 1888-89. He was a top basestealer and solid hitter. When he wasn't winning games with his skills on the field, he was planning the strategy as team captain and manager. His instinct for administration and his magnetic personality made him a natural leader.
Billy Rogell - Combined with Charlie Gehringer for several seasons including 1934 Championship team.
Roger Peckinpaugh - Peckinpaugh was the premier AL shortstop in his day. Rangy, full-chested, and broad-shouldered, with big hands and bowed legs, he pursued the ball relentlessly and effectively, if not always gracefully. A steady hitter, he had a 29-game streak in 1919. He played seventeen years in the majors and won the 1925 American League Most Valuable Player Award. He also managed in the big leagues for eight seasons and was a front office executive
Leo Cardenas - Cardenas appeared in the 1961 World Series against the New York Yankees with a .333 batting average. During the 1966 season Cardenas clubbed 20 homers and drove home 81 runs. He is the winner of the 1965 Gold Glove award and a five time All Star. Cardenas also appeared in back to back Champion Series with the Minnesota Twins in 1969 & 1970. During his career he powered six home runs off of Hall of Fame pitcher Juan Marichal.
Larry Bowa - A powerless switch-hitter early in his career, he developed into a tough out, hitting .280 or better four times, with a high of .305 in 1975, and seldom striking out. He was always a good basestealer, finishing with 318 for his career. With Bowa at short, the Phillies won division titles from 1976 to 1978 and the world championship in 1980.
Donie Bush - For several years as the leadoff man for the Detroit Tigers in the deadball era, Donie Bush was on base when teammates Ty Cobb and Sam Crawford banged out hits with regularity to send him scampering home. Eight times he scored at least 90 runs, and he put himself on the bags often via his keen eye - leading the league in walks five times in a six-year span.
Joe Cronin - Acquired by Tom Yawkey for a record $225,000 prior to the 1935 season, Cronin was a fixture at shortstop until 1946 and as manager through the 1947 season. On the field the right-handed hitter was a solid shortstop in the field and excellent at the plate. Lead Boston to 1946 World Series.
Jack Glasscock - He managed Indianapolis for the last half of the 1889 season, posting a 34-32 record. Early in the year, he discovered 17-year-old future Hall of Famer Amos Rusie pitching for a local semi-pro team, and the young hurler was promptly acquired for Indianapolis.
Hughie Jennings - He led the Bengals to three straight pennants from 1907 to 1909, and he won 1,131 games in his 16-year career as a manager.
Lou Boudreau - Boudreau's consistently outstanding play enabled him to finish in the top ten in the A.L. MVP voting eight times during the decade, winning the award in 1948 when, as Cleveland's player-manager, he led the team to its first world championship in 28 years a feat Cleveland has yet to duplicate since 1948.
Solly Hemus - After being traded to the Phillies, Hemus returned to the Cardinals in 1959 as a player/manager. He posted a 190-192 record at the helm and spent the rest of his career in baseball as a coach with the Mets and Indians, and as a minor league skipper for the Mets.
Marty Marion - This former MVP managed the Cardinals from the bench in 1951, finishing third. Replaced by Eddie Stanky, he moved crosstown to the Browns, and took over for manager Rogers Hornsby early in the 1952 season. He played 67 games that season, three the next, and was let go after a last-place finish in 1953. He managed the White Sox for two-plus seasons, always coming in third. His brother, John "Red" Marion, played briefly for the 1935 and 1943 Senators.
Don Kessinger - The clean-living Kessinger served as player-manager for the White Sox in 1979.
Best with the Glove
Ozzie Smith - Considered the best fielding shortstop in history
Chico Carrasquel - He broke an AL record by accepting 297 chances (in 53 games) without an error in 1951, and beat out reigning MVP Phil Rizzuto as the AL's starting All-Star SS.
Omar Vizquel - Ozzie light, has remarkably similar numbers as the wizard
Mark Belanger - The back bone of Baltimore's championship teams.
Little Shortstops not named Pee Wee
- Boston Red Sox