Mike Piazza, 1995
Stats: .346/.400/.606/1.006, 32 HR, 93 RBI, 150 H, 82 R, 17 2B, 172 OPS+, 263 TB
Awards: All-Star, Silver Slugger, MVP (4th in voting)
Baseball Reference WAR: 6.2
FanGraphs WAR: 6.0
Combined WAR: 6.1
Mike Piazza is a name that we’re going to be seeing a number of times on this list. Today, we’ll be taking a look back at his 1995 campaign.
A good portion of his season was missed due to injuries, as he appeared in only 112 games. It didn’t matter though, as Piazza was yet again one of the best hitters in the National League. Piazza had the second best average in the NL, the second best OPS, the third best slugging percentage and the sixth best on-base percentage. He was also top 10 in home runs and RBI. Oh yeah, he also missed 50 games that season.
Piazza took home Silver Slugger honors for the catcher position. It was the third year in a row in which he won.
He had some amazing stretches in 1995. His first was from May 2 through May 7. Granted, it was only a week, but during that week Piazza hit .520 with an OPS of above 1.500. He hit three homers and drove in 11 runs. Yeah, safe to assume he took home Player of the Week honors after that crazy week.
How can he have a better week than that? Well, not only did he have a better week than that later in the season, but he made that May performance look like it was a pitcher hitting. He took home Player of the Week honors yet again on August 27. Here were his numbers from the week, and yes... I doubled checked these.
From August 21 through August 27, Piazza hit .467/.515/1.367/1.882. HIS OPS WAS NEARLY 2.000. In those seven games, Piazza also hit eight home runs and drove in 14 runs. My goodness. I’m upset I missed prime Piazza while with the Dodgers. I mean, I wasn’t born yet so not really my fault, but my goodness this guy was something else.
In addition to his hot week, Piazza was named the National League Player of the Month for August. He hit .400/.440/.696/1.136 with nine homers and 25 RBI. The crazy thing is, eight of those homers came over the stretch of one week. In 28 games, Piazza had 46 hits and scored 28 runs.