Pittsburgh Pirates: Five Best Right Fielders in Franchise History

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PITTSBURGH – 1938. Paul Waner, outfielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates, takes some cuts before a game at Forbes Field in 1938. (Photo by Mark Rucker/Transcendental Graphics, Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH – 1938. Paul Waner, outfielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates, takes some cuts before a game at Forbes Field in 1938. (Photo by Mark Rucker/Transcendental Graphics, Getty Images) /

Number Two – Paul Waner

This won’t be the last Hall of Fame member we talk about today. ‘Big Poison’ Paul Waner is easily one of the best hitters in Pirate history. Waner has a career slash line of .340/.407/.490 with the Bucs from 1926 to 1940. He also leads all Pirates right fielders in wRC+ with a 138 mark.

Despite not being a big home run hitter, although there weren’t too many when Waner played, Big Poison often racked up many doubles. He averaged nearly 40 a season, and his 558 doubles leads all Pirates, regardless of position played.

Impressively, Waner started off his career with five straight .900+ OPS seasons. From 1926 to 1930, Waner hit .359/.430/.537 with a 143 OPS+. He also won the 1927 MVP in just his second season, making him one of the few players to win MVP in their sophomore season. During that sophomore year, Paul hit .380/.437/.549 with a 154 OPS+.

Defensively, Waner was pretty good. He had a total of +32 total zone runs. He also had a pretty strong arm, seeing as he threw out 221 runners trying to advance on him.

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