How would you figure out who is the worst player in baseball for every year? Looking at the lowest WAR is a good method.
At first, you’d think a bunch of no-name or middle-tier guys would be on this list. But instead, you get big names like Albert Pujols (2017), Prince Fielder (2016), and Victor Martinez (2015).
How bad do you have to be to achieve the worst player in baseball? The worst WAR ranges from -1.5 to -2.6 in the past ten years.
|2021||Jackie Bradley Jr.||MIL||428||-1.5|
The beauty of this system results in players who play a lot. This list doesn’t include players who play for 30 games and then sit on the bench or sent down to the minors. These are legit everyday players.
If you were a lower-tier player performing this badly, you’d probably no longer be in the lineup. But a bigger name has to be in the lineup—especially if you are getting paid big bucks.
The player with the worst WAR so far this season in 2023? José Abreu of the Astros with -1.2.
Didn’t the Astros sign him for three years? Ouch. He’s 36 years old and finished 17th in the MVP voting last year. He tanked really fast. We are 40% done with the season, so he’s projected to get -2.99
At some point, I’d like to pull the complete list of worst players every year. Also, sort it by league and by team. I’d love to see a list of all the worst Cubs yearly.
The worst WAR on the Cubs so far this year is Trey Mancini with -0.7. (projected -1.74)
*I’m using FanGraphs WAR, because it gives the full list, so I can easily view the worst WAR with their site.