New York Yankees all-time best shortstops – No. 8: Bucky Dent
What can you say about Bucky Dent? He was a light-hitting shortstop who had a hard time getting on base. He didn’t steal a lot of bases and didn’t hit for a high average.
Dent was a decent fielder. While defensive metrics are spotty for that era of baseball, he was either first or second in the American League in fielding percentage four times as a Yankee. He also rated well in Total Zone Runs (number of runs above average based on the number of plays made – Baseball-Reference). In this stat, he finished in the top three in the AL four times.
Dent also had little power, never hitting more than eight home runs in a season. That said, he also had one of the most crucial, most exhilarating long balls in franchise history. In 1978, in a playoff game to determine the winner of the AL East, against the hated Red Sox, Dent came through.
Even without the stats, Dent earned his place in Yankees history with this at-bat. His defense and consistent play helped him accumulate enough WAR to be one of the top shortstops ever for the Yankees.