Year by Year Leaders for Winning Percentage

Ever wonder who had the highest winning percentage the year you were born? How about pitchers from you favorite team — have they ever led the league in winning percentage? Baseball Almanac is pleased to present a year-by-year leaderboard (minimum of fifteen wins needed) in Major League games started for every season since 1876. Note: A bold faced entry denotes that the player was active during the previous Major League season.

Baseball Almanac Top Quote

"Nobody ever becomes a ballplayer by walking after a ball." - Winning Percentage Leader (1910-1911 & 1914) Chief Bender

Winning Percentage
Year-by-Year Leaders

'1876 - 2020'

1876 - - - 1876

Al Spalding

0.797 (0.79661)

Chicago

1877 - - - 1877

Tommy Bond

0.702 (0.70175)

Boston

1878 - - - 1878

Harry Wheeler

0.857 (0.85714)

Providence

1879 - - - 1879

John Ward

0.712 (0.71212)

Providence

1880 - - - 1880

Fred Goldsmith

0.875 (0.87500)

Chicago

1881 - - - 1881

Old Hoss Radbourn

0.694 (0.69444)

Providence

1882 - - - 1882

Larry Corcoran

0.692 (0.69231)

Chicago

1883 - - - 1883

Jim McCormick

0.700 (0.70000)

Cleveland

1884 - - - 1884

Old Hoss Radbourn

0.831 (0.83099)

Providence

1885 - - - 1885

Jim McCormick

0.833 (0.83333)

Chicago

Providence

1886 - - - 1886

Jocko Flynn

0.793 (0.79310)

Chicago

1887 - - - 1887

Larry Twitchell

0.917 (0.91667)

Detroit

1888 - - - 1888

Tim Keefe

0.745 (0.74468)

New York

1889 - - - 1889

John Clarkson

0.721 (0.72059)

Boston

1890 - - - 1890

Tom Lovett

0.732 (0.73171)

Brooklyn

1891 - - - 1891

John Ewing

0.724 (0.72414)

New York

1892 - - - 1892

Mike Sullivan

0.750 (0.75000)

Cincinnati

Cy Young

Cleveland

1893 - - - 1893

Fritz Clausen

0.750 (0.75000)

Chicago

Louisville

Hank Gastright

Boston

Pittsburgh

1894 - - - 1894

Jouett Meekin

0.786 (0.78571)

New York

1895 - - - 1895

Bill Hoffer

0.838 (0.83784)

Baltimore

1896 - - - 1896

Bill Hoffer

0.781 (0.78125)

Baltimore

1897 - - - 1897

Fred Klobedanz

0.788 (0.78788)

Boston

1898 - - - 1898

Ted Lewis

0.765 (0.76471)

Boston

1899 - - - 1899

Jay Hughes

0.824 (0.82353)

Brooklyn

Al Orth

Philadelphia

1900 - - - 1900

Joe McGinnity

0.778 (0.77778)

Brooklyn

1901 Clark Griffith

0.774 (0.77419)

Chicago 1901

Ed Doheny

0.750 (0.75000)

New York

Pittsburgh

1902 Rube Waddell

0.774 (0.77419)

Philadelphia 1902

Jack Chesbro

0.824 (0.82353)

Pittsburgh

1903 Cy Young

0.757 (0.75676)

Boston 1903

Sam Leever

0.781 (0.78125)

Pittsburgh

1904 Jack Chesbro

0.774 (0.77358)

New York 1904

Joe McGinnity

0.814 (0.81395)

New York

1905 Rube Waddell

0.730 (0.72973)

Philadelphia 1905

Sam Leever

0.800 (0.80000)

Pittsburgh

1906 Eddie Plank

0.760 (0.76000)

Philadelphia 1906

Ed Reulbach

0.826 (0.82609)

Chicago

1907 Bill Donovan

0.862 (0.86207)

Detroit 1907

Ed Reulbach

0.810 (0.80952)

Chicago

1908 Cy Falkenberg

0.750 (0.75000)

Cleveland 1908

Ed Reulbach

0.774 (0.77419)

Chicago

Washington
1909 George Mullin

0.784 (0.78378)

Detroit 1909

Howie Camnitz

0.806 (0.80645)

Pittsburgh

Christy Mathewson

New York

1910 Chief Bender

0.821 (0.82143)

Philadelphia 1910

Deacon Phillippe

0.875 (0.87500)

Pittsburgh

1911 Chief Bender

0.773 (0.77273)

Philadelphia 1911

Rube Marquard

0.774 (0.77419)

New York

1912 Joe Wood

0.872 (0.87179)

Boston 1912

Claude Hendrix

0.727 (0.72727)

Pittsburgh

1913 Walter Johnson

0.837 (0.83721)

Washington 1913

Bert Humphries

0.800 (0.80000)

Chicago

1914 Chief Bender

0.850 (0.85000)

Philadelphia 1914

Bill James

0.788 (0.78788)

Boston

1915 Joe Wood

0.750 (0.75000)

Boston 1915

Grover Alexander

0.756 (0.75610)

Philadelphia

1916 Nick Cullop

0.684 (0.68421)

New York 1916

Tom Hughes

0.842 (0.84211)

Boston

1917 Ed Klepfer

0.778 (0.77778)

Cleveland 1917

Ferdie Schupp

0.750 (0.75000)

New York

1918 Sam Jones

0.762 (0.76190)

Boston 1918

Erskine Mayer

0.750 (0.75000)

Philadelphia

Pittsburgh

1919 Eddie Cicotte

0.806 (0.80556)

Chicago 1919

Dolf Luque

0.769 (0.76923)

Cincinnati

1920 Elmer Myers

0.900 (0.90000)

Boston 1920

Burleigh Grimes

0.676 (0.67647)

Brooklyn

Cleveland
1921 Carl Mays

0.750 (0.75000)

New York 1921

Jeff Pfeffer

0.750 (0.75000)

Brooklyn

Allen Sothoron Boston

St. Louis

Cleveland
St. Louis
1922 Bullet Joe Bush

0.788 (0.78788)

New York 1922

Phil Douglas

0.733 (0.73333)

New York

1923 Herb Pennock

0.760 (0.76000)

New York 1923

Dolf Luque

0.771 (0.77143)

Cincinnati

1924 Walter Johnson

0.767 (0.76667)

Washington 1924

Emil Yde

0.842 (0.84211)

Pittsburgh

1925 Alex Ferguson

0.833 (0.83333)

Boston 1925

Bill Sherdel

0.714 (0.71429)

St. Louis

New York
Washington
1926 Howard Ehmke

0.750 (0.75000)

Boston 1926

Ray Kremer

0.769 (0.76923)

Pittsburgh

Philadelphia
1927 Eddie Rommel

0.786 (0.78571)

Philadelphia 1927

Larry Benton

0.722 (0.72222)

Boston

New York

1928 Alvin Crowder

0.808 (0.80769)

St. Louis 1928

Larry Benton

0.735 (0.73529)

New York

1929 Eddie Rommel

0.857 (0.85714)

Philadelphia 1929

Charlie Root

0.760 (0.76000)

Chicago

1930 Lefty Grove

0.848 (0.84848)

Philadelphia 1930

Clarence Mitchell

0.769 (0.76923)

New York

St. Louis

1931 Lefty Grove

0.886 (0.88571)

Philadelphia 1931

Jesse Haines

0.800 (0.80000)

St. Louis

1932 Johnny Allen

0.810 (0.80952)

New York 1932

Lon Warneke

0.786 (0.78571)

Chicago

1933 Lefty Grove

0.750 (0.75000)

Philadelphia 1933

Bud Tinning

0.684 (0.68421)

Chicago

Russ Van Atta New York
1934 Lefty Gomez

0.839 (0.83871)

New York 1934

Dizzy Dean

0.811 (0.81081)

St. Louis

1935 Elden Auker

0.720 (0.72000)

Detroit 1935

Bill Lee

0.769 (0.76923)

Chicago

1936 Bump Hadley

0.778 (0.77778)

New York 1936

Carl Hubbell

0.812 (0.81250)

New York

1937 Johnny Allen

0.938 (0.93750)

Cleveland 1937

Carl Hubbell

0.733 (0.73333)

New York

1938 Lefty Grove

0.778 (0.77778)

Boston 1938

Bill Lee

0.710 (0.70968)

Chicago

1939 Atley Donald

0.812 (0.81250)

New York 1939

Paul Derringer

0.781 (0.78125)

Cincinnati

1940 Schoolboy Rowe

0.842 (0.84211)

Detroit 1940

Freddie Fitzsimmons

0.889 (0.88889)

Brooklyn

1941 Lefty Gomez

0.750 (0.75000)

New York 1941

Elmer Riddle

0.826 (0.82609)

Cincinnati

1942 Tiny Bonham

0.808 (0.80769)

New York 1942

Howie Krist

0.812 (0.81250)

St. Louis

1943 Spud Chandler

0.833 (0.83333)

New York 1943

Clyde Shoun

0.737 (0.73684)

Cincinnati

Whit Wyatt

Brooklyn

1944 Tex Hughson

0.783 (0.78261)

Boston 1944

Ted Wilks

0.810 (0.80952)

St. Louis

1945 Bob Muncrief

0.765 (0.76471)

St. Louis 1945

Harry Brecheen

0.789 (0.78947)

St. Louis

1946 Dave Ferriss

0.806 (0.80645)

Boston 1946

Schoolboy Rowe

0.733 (0.73333)

Philadelphia

1947 Spec Shea

0.737 (0.73684)

New York 1947

Larry Jansen

0.808 (0.80769)

New York

1948 Jack Kramer

0.783 (0.78261)

Boston 1948

Rip Sewell

0.812 (0.81250)

Pittsburgh

1949 Ellis Kinder

0.793 (0.79310)

Boston 1949

Ralph Branca

0.722 (0.72222)

Brooklyn

1950 Vic Raschi

0.724 (0.72414)

New York 1950

Sal Maglie

0.818 (0.81818)

New York

1951 Bob Feller

0.733 (0.73333)

Cleveland 1951

Preacher Roe

0.880 (0.88000)

Brooklyn

Morrie Martin Philadelphia
1952 Bobby Shantz

0.774 (0.77419)

Philadelphia 1952

Eddie Yuhas

0.857 (0.85714)

St. Louis

1953 Ed Lopat

0.800 (0.80000)

New York 1953

Preacher Roe

0.786 (0.78571)

Brooklyn

1954 Sandy Consuegra

0.842 (0.84211)

Chicago 1954

Johnny Antonelli

0.750 (0.75000)

New York

Hoyt Wilhelm

New York

1955 Tommy Byrne

0.762 (0.76190)

New York 1955

Don Newcombe

0.800 (0.80000)

Brooklyn

1956 Whitey Ford

0.760 (0.76000)

New York 1956

Don Newcombe

0.794 (0.79412)

Brooklyn

1957 Dick Donovan

0.727 (0.72727)

Chicago 1957

Bob Buhl

0.720 (0.72000)

Milwaukee

Tom Sturdivant New York
1958 Bob Turley

0.750 (0.75000)

New York 1958

Jim Brosnan

0.667 (0.66667)

Chicago

St. Louis

Lew Burdette

Milwaukee

Warren Spahn

Milwaukee

1959 Jack Harshman

0.833 (0.83333)

Baltimore 1959

Roy Face

0.947 (0.94737)

Pittsburgh

Boston
Cleveland
1960 Jim Coates

0.812 (0.81250)

New York 1960

Lindy McDaniel

0.750 (0.75000)

St. Louis

1961 Whitey Ford

0.862 (0.86207)

New York 1961

Johnny Podres

0.783 (0.78261)

Los Angeles

1962 Dave Wickersham

0.733 (0.73333)

Kansas City 1962

Bob Purkey

0.821 (0.82143)

Cincinnati

1963 Whitey Ford

0.774 (0.77419)

New York 1963

Ron Perranoski

0.842 (0.84211)

Los Angeles

1964 Wally Bunker

0.792 (0.79167)

Baltimore 1964

Sandy Koufax

0.792 (0.79167)

Los Angeles

1965 Mudcat Grant

0.750 (0.75000)

Minnesota 1965

Sandy Koufax

0.765 (0.76471)

Los Angeles

1966 Dave Boswell

0.706 (0.70588)

Minnesota 1966

Phil Regan

0.933 (0.93333)

Los Angeles

1967 Jose Santiago

0.750 (0.75000)

Boston 1967

Nelson Briles

0.737 (0.73684)

St. Louis

1968 Denny McLain

0.838 (0.83784)

Detroit 1968

Steve Blass

0.750 (0.75000)

Pittsburgh

1969 Mike Nagy

0.857 (0.85714)

Boston 1969

Bob Moose

0.824 (0.82353)

Pittsburgh

1970 Steve Hargan

0.786 (0.78571)

Cleveland 1970

Wayne Simpson

0.824 (0.82353)

Cincinnati

1971 Dave McNally

0.808 (0.80769)

Baltimore 1971

Tug McGraw

0.733 (0.73333)

New York

1972 Catfish Hunter

0.750 (0.75000)

Oakland 1972

Gary Nolan

0.750 (0.75000)

Cincinnati

1973 Roger Moret

0.867 (0.86667)

Boston 1973

George Stone

0.800 (0.80000)

New York

1974 Bill Champion

0.733 (0.73333)

Milwaukee 1974

Tommy John

0.812 (0.81250)

Los Angeles

1975 Roger Moret

0.824 (0.82353)

Boston 1975

Al Hrabosky

0.812 (0.81250)

St. Louis

1976 Bill Campbell

0.773 (0.77273)

Minnesota 1976

Rick Rhoden

0.800 (0.80000)

Los Angeles

1977 Don Gullett

0.778 (0.77778)

New York 1977

Tom Seaver

0.824 (0.82353)

Cincinnati

New York

1978 Ron Guidry

0.893 (0.89286)

New York 1978

Gaylord Perry

0.778 (0.77778)

San Diego

1979 Ron Davis

0.875 (0.87500)

New York 1979

Jim Bibby

0.750 (0.75000)

Pittsburgh

1980 Steve Stone

0.781 (0.78125)

Baltimore 1980

Jim Bibby

0.760 (0.76000)

Pittsburgh

1981 Steve Comer

0.800 (0.80000)

Texas 1981

Tom Seaver

0.875 (0.87500)

Cincinnati

1982 Jim Palmer

0.750 (0.75000)

Baltimore 1982

Phil Niekro

0.810 (0.80952)

Atlanta

Pete Vuckovich Milwaukee
1983 Moose Haas

0.812 (0.81250)

Milwaukee 1983

John Denny

0.760 (0.76000)

Philadelphia

1984 Doyle Alexander

0.739 (0.73913)

Toronto 1984

Rick Sutcliffe

0.941 (0.94118)

Chicago

1985 Ron Guidry

0.786 (0.78571)

New York 1985

Orel Hershiser

0.864 (0.86364)

Los Angeles

1986 Roger Clemens

0.857 (0.85714)

Boston 1986

Bob Ojeda

0.783 (0.78261)

New York

1987 Mike Henneman

0.786 (0.78571)

Detroit 1987

Rick Aguilera

0.786 (0.78571)

New York

1988 Frank Viola

0.774 (0.77419)

Minnesota 1988

David Cone

0.870 (0.86957)

New York

1989 Bret Saberhagen

0.793 (0.79310)

Kansas City 1989

Sid Fernandez

0.737 (0.73684)

New York

Scott Garrelts

San Francisco

1990 Bob Welch

0.818 (0.81818)

Oakland 1990

Doug Drabek

0.786 (0.78571)

Pittsburgh

1991 Joe Hesketh

0.750 (0.75000)

Boston 1991

Cris Carpenter

0.714 (0.71429)

St. Louis

Kelly Downs

San Francisco

Jose Rijo

Cincinnati

John Smiley

Pittsburgh

1992 Mike Mussina

0.783 (0.78261)

Baltimore 1992

Bob Tewksbury

0.762 (0.76190)

St. Louis

1993 Juan Guzman

0.824 (0.82353)

Toronto 1993

Mark Portugal

0.818 (0.81818)

Houston

1994 Jason Bere

0.857 (0.85714)

Chicago 1994

Marvin Freeman

0.833 (0.83333)

Colorado

1995 Randy Johnson

0.900 (0.90000)

Seattle 1995

Greg Maddux

0.905 (0.90476)

Atlanta

1996 Jamie Moyer

0.875 (0.87500)

Boston 1996

John Smoltz

0.750 (0.75000)

Atlanta

Seattle
1997 Randy Johnson

0.833 (0.83333)

Seattle 1997

Greg Maddux

0.826 (0.82609)

Atlanta

1998 David Wells

0.818 (0.81818)

New York 1998

John Smoltz

0.850 (0.85000)

Atlanta

1999 Pedro Martinez

0.852 (0.85185)

Boston 1999

Mike Hampton

0.846 (0.84615)

Houston

2000 Tim Hudson

0.769 (0.76923)

Oakland 2000

Matt Herges

0.786 (0.78571)

Los Angeles

2001 Roger Clemens

0.870 (0.86957)

New York 2001

Roy Oswalt

0.824 (0.82353)

Houston

2002 Pedro Martinez

0.833 (0.83333)

Boston 2002

Randy Johnson

0.828 (0.82759)

Arizona

2003 Johan Santana

0.800 (0.80000)

Minnesota 2003

Jason Schmidt

0.773 (0.77273)

San Francisco

2004 Curt Schilling

0.778 (0.77778)

Boston 2004

Roger Clemens

0.818 (0.81818)

Houston

2005 Cliff Lee

0.783 (0.78261)

Cleveland 2005

Jorge Sosa

0.812 (0.81250)

Atlanta

2006 Francisco Liriano

0.800 (0.80000)

Minnesota 2006

Chuck James

0.733 (0.73333)

Atlanta

2007 Justin Verlander

0.750 (0.75000)

Detroit 2007

Brad Penny

0.800 (0.80000)

Los Angeles

David Wells

Los Angeles

San Diego

2008 Cliff Lee

0.880 (0.88000)

Cleveland 2008

Adam Wainwright

0.786 (0.78571)

St. Louis

2009 Felix Hernandez

0.792 (0.79167)

Seattle 2009

Chris Carpenter

0.810 (0.80952)

St. Louis

2010 Tommy Hunter

0.765 (0.76471)

Texas 2010

Ubaldo Jimenez

0.704 (0.70370)

Colorado

2011 Doug Fister

0.889 (0.88889)

Detroit 2011

Ian Kennedy

0.840 (0.84000)

Arizona

Seattle
2012 David Price

0.800 (0.80000)

Tampa Bay 2012

Kyle Lohse

0.842 (0.84211)

St. Louis

Jered Weaver Los Angeles
2013 Max Scherzer

0.875 (0.87500)

Detroit 2013

Zack Greinke

0.789 (0.78947)

Los Angeles

2014 Matt Shoemaker

0.800 (0.80000)

Los Angeles 2014

Clayton Kershaw

0.875 (0.87500)

Los Angeles

2015 Nathan Eovaldi

0.824 (0.82353)

New York 2015

Zack Greinke

0.864 (0.86364)

Los Angeles

2016 Aaron Sanchez

0.882 (0.88235)

Toronto 2016

Jon Lester

0.792 (0.79167)

Chicago

2017 Brad Peacock

0.867 (0.86667)

Houston 2017

Alex Wood

0.842 (0.84211)

Los Angeles

2018 Charlie Morton

0.833 (0.83333)

Houston 2018

Miles Mikolas

0.818 (0.81818)

St. Louis

2019 Domingo German

0.818 (0.81818)

New York 2019

Brandon Woodruff

0.786 (0.78571)

Milwaukee

2020 Shane Bieber

0.889 (0.88889)

Cleveland 2020

Caleb Baragar

0.833 (0.83333)

San Francisco

Current Through 2020 Season
baseball almanac flat baseball

baseball almanac fast facts

Cross reference Cy Young Award winners too see how important winning percentage is to baseball writers when deciding who the recipient will be at the end of the regular season.

Did you know that the Major League record for single season winning percentage was set during the 1959 season by Roy Face of the Pittsburgh Pirates ?

Use this chart to find the first leader from your favorite team. Use it to see who holds the record for consecutive seasons leading the league. The see if you can determinoe who the all time winning percentage leader is.

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