The St. Louis Cardinals’ 50 greatest players

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#44 Bob Forsch SP

Bob Forsch is probably one of the most consistent Cardinals’ pitchers of all time. No he doesn’t have the flashy ERA or the flashy K/9 numbers that guys like Wainwright or Carpenter have, but what he did have was consistency. He regularly posted ERA numbers under 4.00, and had a career FIP of 3.82.

Forsch broke into the league in 1974 going 7-4 with a 2.97 ERA (3.50 FIP) in just 14 starts and five appearances out of the bullpen, posting an fWAR of 1.1 as a rookie. The very next season, Forsch went 15-10, with a 2.86 ERA (3.59 FIP) and posted a 3.0 fWAR.

One would think that Forsch’s best season for the Cardinals was in 1977 when he went 20-7 with a 3.48 ERA. However, that season isn’t even one of his top three seasons according to fWAR.

As, in 1980 the right hander went 11-10 with a 3.77 ERA, but the righty must not have had the best defense behind him as he finished with a FIP of 3.19 that season, helping him to a 3.5 fWAR, which was the best of his career. This was all largely due to a career low in BB/9 of 1.38, a number he wouldn’t come near to again.

However, despite posting a 4.7 fWAR from 1986-1987 Forsch was traded away to the Houston Astros. Forsch would retire in 1989 with the Astros and passed away unexpectedly in November of 2011, just days after throwing out the first pitch in Game 7 of the 2011 World Series. Forsch was definitely one of the best.

Next: Bill Sherdel