Top 25 Phillies of All-Time: No. 22 – Chris Short

By: Nick Mandarano, Sports Talk Philly Staff

Chris Short played his high school ball at Lewes High School in Delaware. He would eventually lead the Majors in wild pitches with 14 in 1961, but was infamously wild by his time at Lewes. According to Andy Sturgill, as a sophomore, Short hit a batter and left him unconscious. It was then that Short contemplated quitting baseball. After his coach at the time convinced him to continue playing, Short went on to dominate throughout the rest of his high school career. In his senior year, Short struck out 147 batters in 83 innings. Following high school, Short decided to sign with the Phillies, for whom he had been a long time fan, and ultimately would become one of the franchise's greatest players. 

Career Accomplishments

Short was arguably the best left-handed pitcher of the 1960's not named Sandy Koufax. His 132 career wins ranks as the fourth most in Phillies history. He earned an All-Star game appearance twice in his 14-year career with the Phillies. In 1964, he finished 17-9 with a 2.20 ERA. In 1967, he posted a 2.39 ERA with a 9-11 record.

In each of 1964, 1965 and 1967, he finished in the top five in WAR for pitchers in the National League. Short currently ranks sixth all-time in career WAR for Phillies pitchers. Excluding 1967, from 1963-1968, Short was in the top ten in strikeouts in the National League each season. Short is fourth on the Phillies' list for most career strikeouts with 1,585.

 Most Memorable Moment

Unfortunately, Short’s most memorable moment with the Phillies is not a pleasant memory for fans. With 12 games left in the regular season, Philadelphia held a comfortable 6.5-game lead in the National League. After losing the next ten consecutive games, the Phillies finished in second place with a 92-70 record. During that span, manager Gene Mauch started Short and Jim Bunning four times each. At that time, it was the most dramatic collapse in the history of baseball.

 Reasons for Ranking Placement

Short finished three seasons in his career with a WAR above 5. In seven other season with the Phillies, Short finished with a WAR above 2. This gives him a total of 14 "WAR points" in our ranking formula (explained below). His 14 years with the Phillies gave him another five points in our rankings.

Additionally, he received points for being top five in organizational history in wins and top 25 in WPA.

In total, Short earned 25 points from our algorithm, which is enough to rank him the 22nd greatest Phillies of all-time.

 Formula Explanation

The player rankings formula combines both traditional and advanced statistics/metrics and assigns a point total to each category. These statistics only reflect the player's Phillies career.

First, single season WAR is a primary factor in our rankings. According to WAR's calculations, 2+ WAR is considered a starter, 5+ WAR is All-Star caliber, and 8+ WAR is MVP level.
We totaled the number of seasons that a player performed at a 2+ WAR, 5+ WAR, and 8+ WAR level and assigned a set point value for each category, (+1), (+3), and (+5) respectively.
For example, in 1980, Mike Schmidt complied an 8.8 WAR. This was counted as a 2+ WAR season, a 5+ WAR season, and an 8+ WAR season. So, for 1980 alone, Mike Schmidt earned (9) points for WAR. 
Second, we assigned a point value for amount of years spent with the Phillies. In order to be considered for this list, a player must have been with the organization for a minimum of (5) years. 
Next, we assigned point values for being among the top 25 in particular statistical categories, such as batting average, hits, doubles, triples, RBI, home runs, and OPS for hitters, and ERA, Wins, and WPA (wins probability added) for pitchers. 
Finally, all statistical categories were totaled up using our point based system and ranked accordingly, with historical columnist Matt Albertson and managing editor Tim Kelly of Sports Talk Philly reserving the right to move players up the list, within reason. An explanation of why a player is ranked in a certain spot will be provided, as will an overall score breakdown.

Previous Entries

No. 25 – Garry Maddox

No. 24 – Roy Thomas

No. 23 – Gavvy Cravath

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