Baseball birthdays with the most WAR

January 1st, 2023

Who are the best players born on each day of the year? We have a list for every day on the calendar. But what if you’re curious about which individual birthdays are the "best"? We’ve covered this from a number of perspectives, but what about the most WAR?

We have you covered there, too, thanks to Baseball Reference’s Kenny Jackelen and his team. Here is a list of the top 10 birthdays by total WAR, entering 2023.

1) Nov. 26: 518.6 WAR
Top player: Chuck Finley (57.9)

Entering 2022, Nov. 26 trailed Aug. 31 for first on this list, but thanks in part to strong seasons from Cal Raleigh and Matt Carpenter, the date now leads. The two Hall of Famers born on Nov. 26 rank fifth and sixth in career WAR among players with this birthday: Hugh Duffy (43.1 WAR) and Lefty Gomez (38.7). Ahead of them on the list are Finley, Bob Johnson (55.8), Bob Elliott (51.1) and Fred Tenney (43.8).

2) Aug. 31: 517.3 WAR
Top player by WAR: Frank Robinson (107.2 WAR)

August 31 is now No. 2 on this list, but with four players born on this date who played in 2022, that could eventually change again. The list is headlined by Robinson and Eddie Plank -- two of the three Hall of Famers born on this date, along with Ray Dandridge -- who each accumulated at least 90 WAR in their careers.

3) Sept. 19: 494.2 WAR
Top player: Joe Morgan (100.4)

This date’s Hall of Famers are Morgan and Duke Snider, who had 65.9 WAR in his career. Third on the list is Sadie McMahon, who played from 1889-97 and managed to rack up 40.8 WAR in that span.

4) April 2: 492.4 WAR
Top player: Luke Appling (77.6)

Appling, Don Sutton (66.7 WAR) and Hughie Jennings (42.3) are the three Hall of Famers with this typically early-season birthday. Others with at least 50 WAR born on this date are Reggie Smith (64.6), Tommy Bond (60.9) and Billy Pierce (53.4).

5) June 15: 481.0 WAR
Top player: Wade Boggs (91.4)

Boggs is one of two Hall of Famers born on this day, along with Billy Williams (63.7 WAR). Other names of note include Andy Pettitte (60.2), Brett Butler (49.7), Lance Parrish (39.5) and Dusty Baker (37.0).

6) Jan. 5: 480.7 WAR
Top player: Bill Dahlen (75.2)

This is the first birthday on the list to not have a Hall of Famer despite ranking this high in total WAR. Dahlen, who played from 1891-1911, leads the way. He is followed by Bob Caruthers (59.5 WAR), Art Fletcher (47.1) and Charlie Hough (38.4).

7) April 4: 462.2 WAR
Top player: Tris Speaker (134.7)

This date has two Hall of Famers in Speaker and Gil Hodges (43.9 WAR). The second-most WAR of any player with this birthday belongs to Scott Rolen at 70.1 -- and he is notably still on the Hall of Fame ballot.

8) Oct. 30: 458.4 WAR
Top player: Ed Delahanty (69.6)

Delahanty had the second four-homer game in AL/NL history, on July 13, 1896. This birth date has three Hall of Famers in Delahanty, Bill Terry and Leon Day.

9) July 27: 455.0 WAR
Top player: Alex Rodriguez (117.5)

Rodriguez leads the way here, with Max Scherzer’s 71.7 WAR ranking second on the date. Joe Tinker, a Hall of Famer, is third, and another enshrined in Cooperstown born on this date is Biz Mackey.

10) Aug. 4: 443.6 WAR
Top player: Roger Clemens (139.2)

Jake Beckley, who played from 1888-1907 and amassed 61.2 WAR, is the only player born on this date currently enshrined in Cooperstown. Ten players born on Aug. 4 made at least one All-Star Game, with Clemens leading the way with 11 selections.