Rickey Awards – 2000s

I was reading the Old STATS Baseball Scorecards and they had a leadoff Triple Crown. It consisted of On Base Average, Runs and Stolen Bases. This is logical as On Base Average relates to batting average, Runs relates to RBIs and stolen bases is like, but not as helpful to winning as home runs.

I wondered who would be the leaders every year, as non-leadoff hitters try to get on base and score runs. Some even try to steal bases. I developed a formula like Bill James did for the regular triple crown. As Bill did his study, he came up with 1,000 total points which is impossible to hit. I did the same:

On Base Average: Maximum 400 points. I award two points for every point above .300 and up to .500.

Runs. Maximum 300 points. I awarded 2 points for every run up to 150 runs.

Stolen Bases. I award 3 points for each stolen base up to 100.

I debated the number of points for stolen bases, but decided I wanted an advantage for actual lead off men. Also, there haven’t been many years someone exceeded 100 stolen bases.

After reading a few of these listings, a Bill James online a reader came up with the name Rickey awards after Rickey Henderson, the man many of us consider the greatest leadoff man in baseball history. So, I will periodically call these the Rickey Awards.

2000 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2000:

1. Jason Giambi Oak 574
1. Johnny Damon KC 574
3. Carlos Delgado Tor 570
4. Alex Rodriguez Sea 553
5. Darin Erstad Ana 544
6. Derek Jeter NY 536
7. Frank Thomas Chi 505
8. Manny Ramirez Clev 501
9. Roberto Alomar Clev 495
10. Nomar Garciaparra Bos 491

Things I Learned

The decade starts off with a tie for first place between a slugger and a lead off hitter.

Carlos Delgado didn’t steal any bases otherwise he probably would of won. He did have to steal two.

2000 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2000:

1. Luis Castillo Flo 624
2. Todd Helton Col 617
3. Jeff Bagwell Hou 575
4. Barry Bonds SF 571
5. Bobby Abreu Phil 522
6. Jason Kendall Pitt 514
7. Jeff Kent SF 512
8. Jim Edmonds StL 510
9. Brian Giles Pitt 504
10. Gary Sheffield LA 498

What I Learned:

Luis Castillo came in 8th in on base percentage as well as led the league in stolen bases to take the victory.

Jeff Bagwell maxed out on runs scored by 2. It didn’t cost him a position as Helton beat him easily.

With the steroid era in full swing, there are less stolen bases, so 8 of the top 10 in on base percentage finished in the top 10 for the Rickey Award. The only ones to sneak in were Jason Kendall and Jim Edmonds. Kendall was quite a base runner for a catcher. He could do it all.

2001 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2001:

1. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 584
2. Jason Giambi Oak 578
3. Roberto Alomar Clev 546
4. Alex Rodriguez Tex 518
5. Derek Jeter NY 455
6. Jim Thome Clev 434
7. Carlos Delgado Tor 429
7. Carlos Beltran KC 429
9. Bernie Williams NY 427
10. Mark McLemore Sea 419

What I Learned:

Ichiro edged Giambi for the MVP as the voters were trying to follow the Rickey award.

The Mariners who won 116 games, had six players in the top 10 of the three categories. Edgar Martinez and John Olerud were in the top 10 in on base average. Ichiro Suzuki and Brett Boone were in the top 10 for runs. Ichiro also won the stolen base title. Mark McLemore and Mike Cameron wee in the top 10 in stolen bases.

2001 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2001:

1. Barry Bonds SF 697
2. Sammy Sosa Chi 566
3. Larry Walker Col 554
4. Todd Helton Col 549
5. Bobby Abreu Phil 530
6. Luis Gonzalez Ari 517
7. Juan Pierre Col 510
8. Chipper Jones Atl 507
9. Lance Berkman Hou 501
10. Cliff Floyd Flo 480

What I Learned:

Sammy Sosa came in second with no stolen bases. When he was younger he was often in the top 10 in stolen bases.

Barry Bonds maxed out in on base percentage costing him quite a few points.

The top 7 in on base percentage all made the list and they were all sluggers. The highest stolen base total among the 7 was Larry Walker with 14.

I will be gone about a week as we have visitors and then are going camping. I will try to sneak one in if I can.

2002 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2002:

1. Jason Giambi NY 516
2. Jim Thome Clev 495
3. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 491
4. Derek Jeter NY 490
5. Manny Ramirez Bos 468
6. Alex Rodriguez Tex 461
7. Bernie Williams NY 458
8. Ray Durham Chi-Oak 454
9. Alfonso Soriano NY 443
10. Johnny Damon Oak 441

What I Learned:

New York had 4 of the top 10 and let the league in runs scored by 39 runs.

Actual leadoff hitters Ichiro Suzuki and Derek Jeter are doing quite well against the slugger types.

2002 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2002:

1. Barry Bonds SF 661
2. Vladimir Guerrero Mont 566
3. Brian Giles Pitt 535
4. Bobby Abreu Phil 523
5. Chipper Jones Atl 474
6. Todd Helton Col 487
7. Larry Walker Col 450
8. Sammy Sosa Chi 448
9. Lance Berkman Hou 446
10. Jim Edmonds StL 444
10. Luis Castillo Flo 444

What I Learned:

Barry Bonds had an easy victory even though he topped out for on base average. His on base average was .582 which would have almost won by itself. That is why it is good to limit the number of points in a category. I am looking for a more balanced player. However, if you get on base a lot you are going to score a lot of runs, which Bonds did.

The top 9 in on base average made the list. Luis Castillo who led the league in stolen bases barely made the list.

2003 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2003:

1. Carlos Beltran KC 505
2. Manny Ramirez Bos 497
3. Alex Rodriguez Tex 491
4. Carlos Delgado Tor 486
5. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 428
6. Jason Giambi NY 424
7. Alfonso Soriano NY 409
8. Brett Boone Sea 402
9. Derek Jeter NY 393
10. Nomar Garciaparra Bos 387

What I Learned:

Carlos Beltran was third in stolen bases, which was the only one of the three categories he made the top 10. However, he was strong in every category to win the American League Rickey Award.

2003 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2003:

1. Barry Bonds SF 643
2. Todd Helton Col 586
3. Albert Pujols StL 567
4. Gary Sheffield LA 544
5. Juan Pierre Flo 517
6. Scott Podsednik Mil 487
7. Bobby Abreu Phil 482
7. Edgar Renteria StL 482
9. Lance Berkman Hou 459
10. Brian Giles Pitt-SD 452

What I Learned:

The top three in on base average are the top 3 for the Rickey Award in the same order. The top two in stolen bases finished 5th and 6th. Juan Pierre led the league in stolen bases.

2004 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2004:

1. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 538
2. Melvin Mora Balt 493
3. Vladimir Guerrero Ana 475
4. Johnny Damon Bos 463
5. Alex Rodriguez NY 458
6. Carl Crawford TB 447
7. Gary Sheffield NY 435
8. Travis Hafner Clev 421
9. Matt Lawton Clev 419
10. Manny Ramirez Bos 416

What I Learned:

No one really had a great year. Ichiro Suzuki was solid in all three categories and used his stolen bases to pass Melvin Mora.

2004 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2004:

1. Barry Bonds SF 676
2. Bobby Abreu Phil 612
3. Todd Helton Col 577
4. J.D. Drew Atl 544
5. Lance Berkman Hou 535
6. Albert Pujols StL 511
7. Juan Pierre Flo 483
8. Jim Edmonds StL 464
9. Scott Rolen StL 448
10. Jimmy Rollins Phil 424

What I Learned.

Barry Bonds won 4 in a row. His on base average was .609, so the limits took away over 200 points from him. He still won fairly easily. He won’t win next year as he was hurt. Should of had a spoiler alert.

The top 8 in on base average all made the top 10.

2005 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2005:

1. Alex Rodriguez NY 553
2. Chone Figgens Ana 516
3. Derek Jeter NY 464
4. Brian Roberts Bal 439
4. Scott Podsednik Chi 439
6. David Ortiz Bos 435
7. Jason Giambi NY 428
8. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 421
9. Johnny Damon Bos 420
10. Julio Lugo TB 419

What I learned:

The Yankees not only had winner Alex Rodriguez but 3 of the top 7.

Scott Podsednik led the league in stolen bases to pull off 4th place.

2005 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2005:

1. Albert Pujols StL 566
2. Derrek Lee Chi 521
3. Bobby Abreu Phil 511
4. Jason Bay Pitt 487
5. Todd Helton Col 483
6. Brian Giles SD 469
7. Rafael Furcal Atl 434
8. Jimmy Rollins Phil 429
9. Juan Pierre Flo 415
10. Miguel Cabrera Flo 409

What I Learned:

The first two players on the list each attempted 18 stolen bases. Albert Pujols had 16 steals and Derrek Less had 15 steals. However, they couldn’t compare to Jason Bay who stole 21 bases in 22 attempts. However, Nick Johnson who was 6th in on base percentage had only 3 steals in 11 attempts. Meaning he was caught stealing more than the other 3 players mentioned in this paragraph combines.

Speaking of contrasts, Florida had 9th and 10th places on the list, but you can’t get two more contrasting players than Juan Pierre and Miguel Cabrera.

2006 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2006:

1. Derek Jeter NY 572
2. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 495
3. Grady Sizemore Clev 484
4. Travis Hafner Cle 478
5. Carlos Guillen Det 460
6. David Ortiz Bos 459
7. Alex Rodriguez NY 455
8. Joe Mauer Minn 454
9. Jim Thome Chi 448
9. Carl Crawford TB 448

What I Learned:

The stolen base leader, Carl Crawford and the run scored leader Grady Sizemore made the top 10, but the on base average leader Manny Ramirez didn’t.

Jeter won the Rickey Award. I always thought he should have won the MVP that year, even though a Twin actually won the award.

2006 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2006:

1, Jose Reyes NY 544
2. Albert Pujols StL 521
3. Miguel Cabrera Flo 511
4. Hanley Ramirez Flo 497
5. Nick Johnson Wash 486
6. Carlos Beltran NY 484
7. Rafael Furcal LA 475
8. Chase Utley Phil 465
9. Garrett Atkins Col 464
10. Alfonso Soriano Wash 463

What I Learned:

The Mets haven’t done well in the Rickey Award, but Jose Reyes used his stolen base title to win the Rickey Award. New York had a sweep with Jeter winning the American League award.

As mentioned above Jose Reyes won the stolen base title and Chase Utley won the runs scored title, but like the American League, the on base average leader Barry Bonds didn’t make the top 10.

Last year I kind of made fun of Nick Johnson for being caught stealing 7 times in 11 attempts, so I need to mention in 2006 he stole 10 bases in 13 attempts.

2007 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2007:

1. Alex Rodriguez NY 602
2. David Ortiz Bos 531
3. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 525
4. Grady Sizemore Clev 515
5. Magglio Ordonez Det 514
6. Brian Roberts Bal 510
7. Chone Figgens LA 471
8. Bobby Abreu NY 459
9. Carl Crawford TB 446
10. Curtis Granderson Det 444


What I Learned:

There were more stolen bases among the contenders this year. Curtis Granderson who barely made the top 10 was 26 for 27 in stealing bases.

Alex Rodriguez had a good all-around year to win the Rickey. He was 4th in on base average first in runs and miss by 3 stolen bases of being in the top 10.

2007 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2007:


1. Jose Reyes NY 580
2. Hanley Ramirez Flo 575
3. David Wright NY 560
4. Jimmy Rollins Phil 489
5. Matt Holliday Col 483
6. Chipper Jones Atl 481
7. Barry Bonds SF 479
8. Albert Pujols StL 462
8. Eric Byrnes Ari 462
10. Chase Utley Phil 455

What I Learned:

The Mets got first and third with Reyes repeating. New York again swept the Rickey Awards with Alex Rodriguez winning the American League.

Barry Bonds made the top 10 in his last year.

Eric Byrnes can always brag he tied Albert Pujols for the Rickey Award in 2007.

2008 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2008:

1. Brian Roberts Bal 490
2. Melvin Upton Jr. TB 468
3. Grady Sizemore Clev 464
4. Ichiro Suzuki Sea 457
5. Nick Markakis Bal 454
6. Dustin Pedroia Bos 448
7, Alex Rodriguez NY 446
8. Milton Bradley Tex 443
9. Ian Kinsler Tex 432
10. Johnny Damon NY 427

What I Learned:

The scores are lower this year. The on base averages have gone down and the stolen bases at best had a slight increase.

I don’t think too many Orioles won the Rickey Award so I am happy for Brian Roberts.

Some new names, we will see if they stay on the list.

2008 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2008:

1. Hanley Ramirez Flo 555
2. Albert Pujols StL 545
3. Lance Berkman Hou 522
4. Matt Holliday Col 516
4. Chipper Jones Atl 516
6. Jose Reyes NY 510
7. Carlos Beltran NY 459
8. David Wright NY 455
9. Chase Utley Phil 428
10. Shane Victorino Phil 416

What I Learned:

A lot better than the American League with 6 players over 500 points. Some of sluggers still had really good on base percentages.

2009 AL

Here is the AL Rickey Leaders for 2009:

1. Chone Figgens LA 544
2. Derek Jeter NY 516
3. Jacoby Ellsbury Bos 508
4. Carl Crawford TB 500
5. Joe Mauer Minn 488
6. Bobby Abreu LA 462
7. Jason Bartlett TB 448
8. Denard Span Minn 447
9. Kevin Youkilis Bos 445
10. Ben Zobrist Tb 443

What I Learned:

Figgens and Jeter were in the top 10 in all three categories.

There was an improvement in scores in the AL. It was due to the leadoff and stealing base players. It was nice to see 4 players get 500 points.

2009 NL

Here is the NL Rickey Leaders for 2009:

1. Albert Pujols StL 582
2. Hanley Ramirez Flo 503
3. Chase Utley Phil 487
4. Michael Bourn Hou 485
5. Ryan Braun Mil 458
6. David Wright NY 437
7. Prince Fielder Mil 436
8. Troy Tulowtzki Col 416
9. Nyjer Morgan Pitt-Wash 412
10. Joey Votto Cin 404

What I Learned:

Albert Pujols and Hanley Ramirez traded places from last year. Pujols had an easy victory as he did well in every category. He led the league in on base percentage and run scored as well as stealing 16 bases. That was twice the amount of the other 4 top 5 players in on base average combined.

Chase Utley stole 23 bases in 23 attempts.

Top 10 AL 2000s

  1. Ichiro Suzuki 66
  2. Alex Rodriguez 65
  3. Derek Jeter 50
  4. Jason Giambi 42
  5. Chone Figgens 26
  6. Brian Roberts 23.5
  7. Grady Sizemore 23
  8. Johnny Damon 22
  9. Manny Ramirez 20
  10. David Ortiz 20

What I Learned:

Isn’t it ironic that the two Red Sox sluggers’ ties for 9th?

Ichiro and Rodriguez battled for the Rickey decade award throughout the decade despite Jason Giambi’s hot start. Derek Jeter battled his way to third.

Top 10 NL 2000s

  1. Albert Pujols 59.5
  2. Barry Bonds 59
  3. Todd Helton 46
  4. Bobby Abreu 41
  5. Hanley Ramirez 39
  6. Jose Reyes 29
  7. Chipper Jones 20.5
  8. Lance Berkman 20
  9. Brian Giles 16
  10. Juan Pierre 16
  11. David Wright 16

What I Learned:

I didn’t think Pujols would catch Bonds until I got to the total. Another close race for the Rickey decade award. Pujols took over for Bonds as the dominate hitter after Bonds retired.

Bobby Abreu also scored 8 points in the American League.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s