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FPS Classics Update
April 23, 2004

A few years ago, TCO's former site published an interesting article about some of the best FPS performances over the years.  For those of you unfamiliar with FPS, shame on you!  You can catch up by reading about it here.

While looking up some historical stats with a couple fellow fantasy league owners, we may have discovered the best FPS season in history.  Was it Bonds and his 73 home runs?  No, but he's close.  In fact, we thought that Sammy Sosa's numbers in 1998 were the best from a fantasy perspective until we stumbled on Larry Walker's numbers just a year earlier in 1997.  Take a look and notice the comparisons to some of the more memorable season in baseball history.
The chart does not take into account pitchers, but that will be something to look at in a future column.  With the biggest changes coming from pitching over the last one hundred years, many early 20th century hurlers likely have FPS numbers close to 2000.  I would guess a 30-win season with 300+ innings pitched and strikeouts to match would do a fantasy team well if such things existed in those days.

Back to the hitting seasons, though, Larry Walker's output in '97 is absolutely everything you could possibly want in a fantasy hitter.  Every single category is not just good, but great.  The irony in these numbers is that while Walker likely got a huge boost in power numbers thanks to Coors Field, what separates him from the rest of this elite list is the stolen bases.  Give Walker 10 SBs instead of the 33 he swiped, and his numbers fall below McGwire.

These lines are not the greatest FPS lines ever, just the ones we have stumbled on at TCO.  Some new ones already come to mind during the writing of this article (Ricky Henderson in his running days, Vince Coleman's record stolen base season, etc.).  If you have any ideas of a season that might qualify, including pitchers, send us an email and we'll run the numbers.  Until then, keep buying low and selling high!