Skip to content

Appreciating the near-greatness of Magglio Ordonez

Mar 26, 2012, 5:17 PM EDT

Magglio Ordonez AP

Note: I originally wrote this on October 10, but with today’s news that Ordonez is close to retiring I figured it was worth re-posting.

Magglio Ordonez is 37 years old, coming off the worst season of his 15-year career, and will miss the rest of the Tigers’ playoff run after re-fracturing his right ankle, so there’s already speculation about him retiring.

If he’s indeed finished Ordonez goes out on a series of low notes, but it’s worth remembering how productive he’s been over the years.

Ordonez never became a household name and had just one top-10 finish in the MVP voting, but he was selected for six All-Star teams and ranks as one of the best right-handed hitters of his generation.

In fact, among all active right-handed hitters with at least 5,000 career plate appearances Ordonez ranks sixth in OPS:

Albert Pujols      1.037
Manny Ramirez       .996
Alex Rodriguez      .953
Miguel Cabrera      .950
Vladimir Guerrero   .931
MAGGLIO ORDONEZ     .871

Manny Ramirez is technically “active” because he played at one point this season. Other top right-handed hitters like Ryan Braun, Matt Holliday, David Wright, Hanley Ramirez, and Kevin Youkilis also rank ahead of Ordonez in OPS, but they haven’t cracked the 5,000-plate appearance mark yet and comparing their career numbers to his is misleading because they’ve yet to go through the decline phase.

However you slice it, Ordonez was one of the dozen or so best right-handed hitters of the past 20 years.

Latest Posts
  1. Nationals expected to activate Ryan Zimmerman this weekend

    Sep 19, 2014, 5:50 PM EDT

    Ryan Zimmerman AP AP

    Ryan Zimmerman has been out since mid-July with a hamstring injury.

  2. If you love chaos, root for Team Entropy

    Sep 19, 2014, 4:31 PM EDT

    Chaos Theory

    Basically, we want everyone in the NL to finish with 88 wins.

  3. Paul Konerko returns to play through a broken hand

    Sep 19, 2014, 4:19 PM EDT

    Paul Konerko Getty Images

    Konerko has hit just .220 with five homers and a .616 OPS in 74 games.

  4. Derek Jeter will be presented with a bronze cap tonight

    Sep 19, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Bronze cap

    What do you get the man who has everything? A bronzed version of the stuff he already has!

  5. Carlos Ruiz reveals he’s played the entire season with a shoulder injury

    Sep 19, 2014, 3:15 PM EDT

    Carlos Ruiz AP AP

    He has two years remaining on a three-year, $26 million contract.

  6. UPDATE: It’s now 6-3 Dodgers, as Clayton Kershaw masterfully pitches to the score

    Sep 19, 2014, 3:00 PM EDT

    Clayton Kershaw Clayton Kershaw

    Because if Clayton Kershaw needs anything, he needs a bunch of run support.

  7. How will the Orioles use Kevin Gausman in the playoffs?

    Sep 19, 2014, 2:48 PM EDT

    Boston Red Sox v Baltimore Orioles Getty Images

    Kevin Gauzman has been fantastic for the Orioles, posting a 3.57 ERA with just five homers allowed in 18 starts as a 23-year-old rookie.

  8. Great moments in rookie hazing: making Joc Pederson get the Dodgers coffee

    Sep 19, 2014, 2:30 PM EDT

    joc pederson getty Getty Images

    If you have to haze, at least get some coffee out of the deal.

  9. Javier Baez is hitting .178 with 78 strikeouts in 43 games; should the Cubs be worried?

    Sep 19, 2014, 2:14 PM EDT

    1baez Getty Images

    After homering seven times in his first 19 games Cubs rookie Javier Baez has gone deep just twice in his last 24 games while hitting .146 with 44 strikeouts.

  10. Major League Baseball is opening up a Latin American Headquarters

    Sep 19, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

    dominican republic flag-thumb-175x116-6120

    Baseball is making a more formal commitment to oversight in international talent development.

  11. The Red Sox, Cubs and Rays employ neurological training to help hitters

    Sep 19, 2014, 12:16 PM EDT

    Clockwork

    It’s not as scary as what our friend Alex had to endure, here, but it’s still pretty cool.

  12. Geddy Lee’s baseball obsession makes it really hard for me to hate Rush

    Sep 19, 2014, 11:32 AM EDT

    Rush

    Come for the cool video. Stay for a way-too-long explanation of why I hate Rush. And the inevitable comments from Rush fans about why I’m wrong about this.

  13. Talking head says Jeter is “a fraud” and “you are all suckers”

    Sep 19, 2014, 10:34 AM EDT

    Derek Jeter Getty Getty Images

    Imagine being a person so awful and sour that you feel this is something reasonable to say.

  14. Yasiel Puig seems to be snapping out of his funk at the right time

    Sep 19, 2014, 9:16 AM EDT

    Yasiel Puig Getty Images

    After a good night last night he’s 12 for his last 30.

  15. It certainly looks like Barry Bonds’ criminal conviction is going to be overturned

    Sep 19, 2014, 8:53 AM EDT

    Closing Arguments Delivered In Barry Bonds Trial Getty Images

    That’s right: for the 2,559th time, Barry Bonds is gonna walk.

  16. There were some walkoffs last night. Let us watch them.

    Sep 19, 2014, 8:27 AM EDT

    Wilin Rosario AP

    I’m an old man who goes to bed early, so I couldn’t see all of this. If you’re like me, enjoy.

Featured video

Patience finally paying off for Royals fans
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. R. Castillo (3427)
  2. G. Stanton (2652)
  3. A. Rizzo (2401)
  4. H. Ryu (2384)
  5. J. Hamilton (2220)
  1. M. Trout (2174)
  2. N. Arenado (2142)
  3. E. Gattis (2007)
  4. D. Ortiz (1930)
  5. A. Pujols (1894)