I think WAR underrates Jim Palmer. It penalizes him for taking advantage of that great defense behind him. However, it seems like a smart move to me. Why worry about strikeouts when you have Brooks Robinson, Mark Belanger and Paul Blair fielding behind you. Jim Palmer always seemed like a very analytical pitcher. It worked.
Palmer won 20 games 8 times in 9 seasons. He was also lucky to be with the Orioles in their glory days. He was 20 years old when the Orioles first went to the World Series. (They had gone earlier as the St. Louis Browns.) All he had to do was to face the great Sandy Koufax in game 2. Palmer threw a shutout. Due to some lousy Dodger fielding the Orioles won 6-0.
Quite a start for a 20-year-old. However, he was out for a lot of the next two years due to injuries. Palmer came back in 1969 with a 16-win season. The Orioles went to the World Series the next three years winning another one. Palmer stuck around two for two more World Series. In the 1983 World Series Palmer was 37 and didn’t have a good season. Palmer came in relief in game 3 of the World Series. He pitched 2 scoreless innings and Palmer was credited with the win. The Orioles won their last World Series thus far.
That means the Baltimore Orioles have been to 6 World Series and Jim Palmer has been to each one. He also got a decision in each World Series. The other interesting fact is that Palmer pitched in 12 post season series and had an 8-3 record. He had one decision in 11 of the series. I wonder what the odd of that happening.