I'm a sucker for lists. Chris Quick recently assembled a fun one in this space celebrating power hitters who weren't particularly productive.
Chris is a self-proclaimed slave to power. Me, I'm a slave to patience. And just as Bryan Ferry couldn't escape love, I cannot escape walks.
With that curious and dated musical reference out of the way, let's get to the details. Using Baseball-Reference's Play Index tool, I searched for players based on the following criteria:
Minimum of 3,000 career plate appearances since 1961
ISO (SLG -- BA) of .150 or lower
Walks greater than 10 percent of plate appearances
I then sorted by ISO to get a list of players who least justified the amount of fear they apparently instilled in pitchers. And to make it a team, I ran the same query for players at each non-pitching position (minimum 50 percent of games at that position). To the names:
Starter: Butch Wynegar, 1976-88 (626 BB, .092 ISO, .255/.348/.347)
Picture Craig Counsell behind the plate. Can't stop laughing, can you? Anyway, Wynegar was that kind of hitter, only a little better given the context of his era.
Backup: Mike Scioscia, 1980-92 (567 BB, .097 ISO, .259/.344/.356)
OK, I'll come clean. This exercise was an excuse to get Scioscia, my favorite player as a kid, onto a team of his own.
Starter: Mike Hargrove, 1974-85 (965 BB, .101 ISO, .290/.396/.391)
Hargrove's strategy was simple: stall until the pitcher loses focus and forgets how to throw strikes. It may have been annoying, but it worked.
Backup: Wes Parker, 1964-72 (532 BB, .108 ISO, .267/.351/.375)
Starter: Luis Castillo, 1996-2010 (800 BB, .061 ISO, .290/.368/.351)
Castillo enters 2010 with 1,889 hits, the same as Jim Gilliam and Adrian Beltre.
Backup: Jose Oquendo, 1983-95 (448 BB, .061 ISO, .256/.346/.317)
Of Oquendo's 14 big-league homers, 13 came against left-handed pitchers.
Congratulations, Doug Bair, you are the answer to a trivia question that no one will ever ask.
Starter: Paul Schaal, 1964-74 (516 BB, .100 ISO, .244/.341/.344)
Schaal attended Compton High School in Los Angeles, which also produced the late Duke Snider.
Backup: Wayne Garrett, 1969-78 (561 BB, .102 ISO, .239/.350/.341)
As a 21-year-old rookie, Garrett hit .218/.290/.268 for the Miracle Mets. After his bat came to life in the NLCS against Atlanta, he yielded to veteran Ed Charles in the World Series.
Starter: Bud Harrelson, 1965-80 (633 BB, .052 ISO, .236/.327/.288)
Mike Hampton hit as many homers (7) in 2001 as Harrelson hit in his career.
Backup: Walt Weiss, 1987-2000 (658 BB, .068 ISO, .258/.351/.326)
Among players with at least 3,000 career plate appearances, three have finished with the same number of walks as strikeouts: Frank Baumholtz (258), Jim Dwyer (402) and Weiss (658).
Starter: Carlos May, 1968-77 (512 BB, .118 ISO, .274/.357/.392)
Talk about guys who peaked early. May hit like Dave Winfield through age 25 (well, technically Winfield hit like May) but was finished at age 29.
Backup: Tim Raines, 1979-2002 (1,330 BB, .131 ISO, .294/.385/.425)
Exhibit A for why this is a stupid list: Raines was a great player. It's hard to find weak-hitting left fielders.
Starter: Otis Nixon, 1983-99 (800 BB, .044 ISO, .270/.343/.314)
What a bizarre career path. The man didn't get 500 plate appearances in a season until age 33 and still ended up with 620 big-league stolen bases.
Backup: Bill North, 1971-81 (627 BB, .062 ISO, .261/.365/.323)
I assumed Gary Pettis would be here, but he comes in third (too much power). North led his league in caught stealing four different times.
Starter: Pat Kelly, 1967-81 (588 BB, .113 ISO, .264/.354/.377)
Kelly is tied with Reggie Jackson and Roy White for sixth in career walks (18) drawn against Nolan Ryan.
Backup: Floyd Robinson, 1960-68 (408 BB, .126 ISO, .283/.365/.409)
I fudged the parameters for this one. Robinson played 22 games in 1960, but he better represents the spirit of our list than does the late Willie Crawford.