Top 10 Best San Francisco Giants Players of All Time

Top 10 Best San Francisco Giants Players of All Time

The San Francisco Giants are one of the oldest teams in MLB history, being founded in 1883. At this time, they were the New York Gothams and then eventually changed their name to the New York Giants. In 1958 they moved to San Francisco. Over their history, they have amassed the second most Hall of Fame players, 20 of which were during their time in New York and five while in San Francisco. While there are a lot of amazing players that have played for the Giants over the years, who are the best?

Who Are the Best San Francisco Giants Baseball Players of All Time?

  1. Willie Mays
  2. Barry Bonds
  3. Mel Ott
  4. Willie McCovey
  5. Juan Marichal
  6. Buster Posey
  7. Madison Bumgarner
  8. Tim Lincecum
  9. Will Clark
  10. Matt Williams

1. Willie Mays

  • 1979 Baseball Hall of Famer
  • 2x MVP
  • 24x All-Star

After 21 years of playing with the Giants, Willie Mays solidified himself as one of the greatest players in MLB history. He led the MLB in home runs four years out of his career, with his season-high being 51. He also led the league in hits one year with 190. Along with his 24 All-Stars he also had 12 Gold Gloves for his position.

This makes him not only one of the best hitters of all time but one of the best defensive center fielders of all time. Over his career, he had 660 home runs, which ranks him sixth all-time. Willie Mays also led the Giants to one World Series win in 1954. This was the last World Series win the Giants had until 2010.

2. Barry Bonds

  • 7x MVP
  • 2x Batting Title
  • All-Time Home Run Leader

While his career is questioned by many for his use of steroids, Barry Bonds’s numbers are nothing but amazing. Leading the history of the MLB with 762 home runs and also batting just under .300. In his best season, he hit a record 73 home runs. Not only was he an amazing hitter, but he was also a great base stealer when he was in his prime.

Bonds has stolen over 500 bases in his career. He is the player that puts fear into opposing pitchers causing them to walk him. This is why he is also the all-time leader in walks and also the all-time leader in intentional walks. Not only was his offensive game amazing, having won 12 Silver Sluggers, but he was also a great fielder in his younger days, being awarded eight Gold Gloves.

3. Mel Ott

  • 1951 Hall of Famer
  • World Series Champion
  • 12x All-Star

Mel Ott played his entire career with the New York Giants and won the Giants their 4th World Series. While they did not keep many different stats when he played, he still left his legacy on the Giants franchise. Ott batted over .300 and hit 511 home runs over his long 22 year career.

He led the league in home runs for six seasons. He was drafted at 17 years old and didn’t make an All-Star Game until his age-25 season. He was an All-Star for the next 12 years. During his peak, he was top ten in MVP voting six times.

4. Willie McCovey

  • 1969 MVP
  • 1986 Hall of Famer
  • 6x All-Star

While his accolades might not seem like he belongs at this point on the list, Willie McCovey is an all-around great player that played 19 seasons with the Giants. He won Rookie of the Year in 1959, right after the Giants moved to the bay area. He was one of the first great players that the Giants had in San Francisco.

He was top ten in MVP voting four times, winning it once in 1969. He is also top-20 in all-time home runs, at 521. He led the MLB in OBS (on base + slugging percentage) for three years straight. He was finally voted into the Hall of Fame in 1986. At Oracle Park, the water nearby is now named after Willie McCovey, being called McCovey cove.

5. Juan Marichal

  • Hall of Famer
  • 10x All-Star
  • All-Star MVP

Juan Marichal has one of the most recognizable pitching motions of all time, getting his leg way above his head. He has a statue outside of Oracle Park in San Francisco to commemorate his time there. While he only played 16 seasons in the MLB, 14 of which were with the Giants, he was brilliant for most of them.

He led the league in wins twice and ERA once. He was top twenty in MVP voting five times. He held batters to just a .237 batting average when he pitched. He also had one of the lower walk rates in the MLB at the time. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1983.

6. Buster Posey

  • 3x World Series Champion
  • MVP
  • 7x All-Star

Buster Posey was the face of the Giants for a decade and represented what the Giants were. He was the stepping stone to the Giants reclaiming themselves as the best team in the league, which they had not done since their time in New York. In his rookie season in 2010, he won Rookie of the Year and was top 15 in MVP voting. This was also when he won his first World Series.

He won two more in 2012 and 2014 being the face of the team and being one of the best and most consistent players for them. He won MVP in 2012 when he batted .336 and hit 24 home runs. He is not known as a home run hitter but still ended his 12-year career with 158 home runs. He also had 1,500 hits and batted over .300.

7. Madison Bumgarner

  • 3x World Series Champion
  • World Series MVP
  • 4x All-Star

Madison Bumgarner had one of the greatest playoff runs in the History of the MLB. In 2014 he willed the Giants to a World Series and proved himself the best player on the team. He had the lowest ERA at .43 and totaled two wins and one save in the World Series. He also won the 2010 and 2012 World Series for the Giants in the starting rotation.

Not only is Madison Bumgarner cemented in history for his playoff runs, but also for being one of the best hitter pitchers in the MLB for most of his career. He has two Silver Slugger awards and has 19 home runs over his career. He was also top ten in Cy Young Voting four times over his career with the Giants.

8. Tim Lincecum

  • 3x World Series Champion
  • 2x Cy Young
  • 4x All-Star

Tim Lincecum was brilliant early in his career, and in just his second year in the league he won the Cy Young award. He also led the league in win/loss percentage at .783. At this point he was a strikeout pitcher and led the MLB in strikeouts and strikeouts per nine innings pitched for three straight years.

While his peak was short-lived, it was mesmerizing and propelled the Giants back into contention. He was an integral part of the Giants’ 2010 and 2012 World Series wins and helped build a winning culture in San Francisco. After ten years in the MLB, nine of which with the Giants, he amassed 1736 strikeouts.

9. Will Clark

  • Gold Glove
  • 2x Silver Slugger

Will Clark played eight years with the Giants and was one of their best batters during that time. During his time with the Giants, he hit 176 home runs and batted .299. He was also top-five in MVP voting for four out of his eight years with the Giants.

He was a very consistent player for the Giants playing in mostly every game for each of the eight years. He led the league in RBIs and Runs scored in 1988 and 1989, respectively. He also brought a sense of thrill to the game by being such a great batter for the Giants. This is why he was given the nickname Will the Trill.

10. Matt Williams

  • 5x All-Star
  • 4x Gold Glove
  • 4x Silver Slugger

Matt Williams played ten years with the Giants and during those years was a very consistent two-way threat. He won three of his Gold Gloves with the Giants and appeared in four All-Star Games. He was also top ten in MVP voting three times during his time with the Giants.

He had 1092 hits and 247 home runs while maintaining his top-of-the-line defensive plays. He led the league in home runs in 1994 with 43 home runs and led the league in RBIs in 1990 with 122.

Honorable Mentions

  • Gaylord Perry
  • Brandon Crawford
  • Matt Cain
  • Brandon Belt
  • Christian Mathewson
  • Orlando Cepeda
  • Robb Nen
  • Carl Hubbell
  • Pablo Sandoval
  • Jeff Kent


Who is the best San Francisco Giants player of all time?

The greatest player in San Francisco Giants history is Willie Mays. He played 21 years with the Giants and was an All-Star for 18 of those years. He was also top 20 in MVP voting 15 times, winning the MVP twice. He is not only one of the best players in Giants history but also in the history of the MLB.

Which San Francisco Giants player holds the record for most home runs?

The player in San Francisco Giants history that holds the record for the most home runs is Barry Bonds. He holds the MLB record for home runs with 762. While this number is controversial because of his use of steroids, this record still stands and seems nearly unbreakable at this point in time.