All-Angels Team: First Baseman

By Brian Helberg
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Wally Joyner (1986-1991, 2001)

Wally Joyner was drafted by the California Angels in the third round of the 1983 draft, and ascended to the big leagues in 1986 as a 24-year-old. Joyner’s ’86 season was memorable, as he hit .290 as a rookie, with 22 home runs and 100 RBI’s. Joyner finished second in Rookie of the Year voting and eighth in MVP voting that year. Joyner was the first rookie ever named to the All-Star Game starting lineup in ‘86 en route to making the postseason. Joyner proved to be a clutch hitter in October when he hit .455 in the Halos series with the Boston Red Sox in ’86. 1987 was even better for the Georgia boy, as he hit .285 and posted career highs with 34 long balls and 117 RBI’s. Joyner topped .300 in his final season with the Angels, batting .301, adding 22 dingers and driving in 96.

Wally Joyner finished his 7-year stay in Anaheim with a batting average of .286, 117 home runs and 532 RBI’s. Joyner excelled at getting on base, as he posted a .350 OBP in a Halos uniform, and never finished with an OBP lower than .335. Joyner posted a .440 slugging percentage, and a .801 OPS during his time in the Big A. The BYU grad’s superb fielding was never recognized with a Gold Glove, but he managed to save a total of 22 runs for the Angels. Joyner crushed league averages in both fielding percentage and range factor during his tenure with the Halos. Joyner tallied 18.9 wins above replacement as a member of the Angels.

Wally Joyner was brought back by the Angels to finish his career where it began in 2001. Although it was not his best season statistically, Angels’ fans enjoyed getting one last glimpse at the star first baseman.

Next: Albert Pujols