Don Mincher, 1967
Stats: .273/.367/.487/.854, 25 HR, 76 RBI, 133 H, 81 R, 156 OPS+, 237 TB
Awards: All-Star, MVP (21st)
Baseball Reference WAR: 4.4
FanGraphs WAR: 4.4
Combined WAR: 4.4
Don Mincher only spent two seasons of his 13-year career with the Angels. However, one of them was enough to crack the top 100 of this countdown.
Not only was 1967 his best season with the Angels, it was arguably his best season of his big-league career. Mincher was named an All-Star, one of only two times he was selected. He also finished 21st in MVP voting, the only time during his career in which he’d receive votes.
Mincher finished the year in the top 10 of essentially every category in the American League. He was in the top 10 for batting average (10th), on-base percentage (8th), slugging percentage (6th), OPS (5th), runs (9th), home runs (5th), RBI (10th) and OPS+ (5th). It’s amazing that he only finished 21st in MVP voting.
Through the first quarter of the season, Mincher was having one of the better seasons among players in the American League. He was an early MVP candidate entering the month of June. Through the first two months of the season, Mincher was hitting .338/.435/.640/1.074 with 10 homers and 27 RBI. Obviously he didn’t keep up that pace, but that’s a 162-game pace of 40 homers and over 100 RBI. Not too bad.
Over the rest of the season his bat cooled off, hitting .248 with an OPS of .767 over the final four months. Though those still aren’t awful numbers, he tailed off compared to what he was doing during those first two months.
That would be his final season with the Angels, as he was drafted by the Seattle Pilots from the California Angels as the 2nd pick in the 1968 expansion draft.