Advanced Stats Revealed Rock-Solid Hall Of Fame Case For David Ortiz

Ortiz was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Tuesday night


David Ortiz officially will live on in baseball immortality as the longtime Boston Red Sox slugger was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Tuesday night.

Ortiz received 77.9% of the ballot while players need 75% of the ballot to earn induction. He was the lone player elected into the Hall of Fame by the vote of the Baseball Writers? Association of America.

Ortiz, who played 14 seasons with the Red Sox and 20 campaigns in his career, is well-deserving of the honor. The larger-than-life Dominican Republic native not only helped Boston to three World Series titles (2004, 2007, 2013), but did so behind incredible production at the plate with a clutch gene that not many could rival.

The advanced stats from SportRadar made a rock-solid case for Ortiz to land in Cooperstown. And the majority are rooted to his postseason prowess. Simply, it caused his selection to be a no-brainer.

Ortiz, who made contact on 90.5% of the pitches he saw in the strike zone during his postseason career, ranks fourth all-time in extra-base hits in the postseason (41), despite sitting in a tie for 12th in postseason games played (85). New York Yankees greats Derek Jeter and Bernie Williams as well as former Red Sox teammate Manny Ramirez have more extra-base hits, though they had more opportunities to do so. Jeter had 16 more hits in 73 more games while Williams had 10 more knocks in 36 more games. It’s not crazy to think that Ortiz, should he have spent more time in the postseason (nine trips in 20 seasons), would have finished with the most extra-base hits in playoff history.

Ortiz, a left-handed batter, feasted on right-handed pitchers as he hit .312 in the postseason compared to his .233 number off left-handers. Only five players with 200 or more postseason at-bats had a higher batting percentage against right-handers than Ortiz. Forty percent of the pitches he saw were fastballs while 14% were off-speed pitches, as he either took a ball or made contact on 67.6% of pitches outside the zone.

Ortiz’s dramatics help him stand on a different level, too, as he frequently stepped up when the lights were the brightest. The 6-foot-3, 230-pound slugger compiled 11 regular-season walk-off hits and three in the postseason (two home runs). His three postseason walk-offs are tied with Carlos Correa for the most since at least 1903.

The postseason numbers truly are incredible for Ortiz, who recorded a .409 average with runners in scoring position and two outs, according to SportRadar. That average is the best ever among players with 300 or more postseason at-bats. His .326 postseason batting average with runners in scoring position was the highest among players with 300 at-bats.

In his career, Ortiz recorded a .344 batting average with the bases loaded, a .301 average with runners in scoring position and a .279 clip with runners in scoring position and two outs. It depicts just how much Ortiz stepped up his game come playoff time.

Ortiz sits in a tie for fourth in postseason RBIs (61) and among the top 10 in postseason home runs (17). Williams, Ramirez, David Justice are the only ones who rank higher in RBIs with Justice having two more RBIs in 94 more at-bats.

And that all is in addition to Ortiz’s career regular-season stats which include 2,472 hits (541 home runs), 1,768 RBIs, 1,419 runs scored and 1,319 walks to 1,750 strikeouts. Ortiz ranks first among all players who spent 50% of their career at designated hitter in home runs, RBIs and doubles (632). He ranks second in hits, walks, runs scored and slugging percentage (.552) among designated hitters. Ortiz filled the bat-only role in 84.2% of his 2,408 games.

In the larger picture, Ortiz sits 12th all-time in doubles, 17th in home runs, 23rd in RBIs and 41st in both hits and walks. His 10 seasons in which he recorded 30 home runs and 100 RBIs are more than any player in Red Sox history.

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