No. 2 – Bobby Grich
Bobby Grich played just seven of his seventeen years with the Baltimore Orioles but he made them count. Grich was an excellent all-around player for the Orioles, both serving as a high on-base percentage hitter, and as a Gold Glove caliber defender.
In his seven years with the Orioles, Grich hit .262/.372/.405 with 70 home-runs, 307 RBI, 77 stolen bases and a 127 OPS+. He earned 36.0 bWAR with the Orioles, owned a career .984 fielding percentage as a second baseman, and earned a World Series championship ring with the Orioles in 1970, albeit serving as Davey Johnson’s backup.
Grich had five consecutive seasons with at least 6.0 bWAR. He made three All-Star game appearances with the Orioles, won four consecutive Gold Glove awards and received down-ballot AL MVP votes three times before leaving Baltimore in free-agency.
Over his career, Bobby Grich earned 71.1 total bWAR, good for 8th all-time at second base. Jay Jaffe’s JAWS system ranks Grich as the 8th bet second baseman of all-time, which some might consider a stretch. But Grich was undoubtedly a great player and his being snubbed by the Hall of Fame is a bit egregious.
The topic has been covered extensively, and many in the baseball community agree that Grich is one of the best players without a plaque in Cooperstown. His lack of counting stats (hits, RBI, homers, etc.), along with the woeful cronyism that comes with the Veteran’s committee, will forever keep him out of the Hall, but he’ll always be one of the best Orioles of all-time.