Sorry, Mailman, now that you've retired without a ring, you've earned a spot on our list of greatest athletes who never won the big one.
1. Ted Williams
Between 1939 and 1960, he played 16 full seasons for the Red Sox, losing several prime years serving in the military. He made it to only one World Series in 1946, when he was AL MVP and Boston piled up a 104-50 record, but it wasn't to be. Williams hit just .200 with one RBI and the Red Sox lost to the Cardinals in seven games.
2. Dan Marino
The NFL's career leader in touchdown passes and passing yards by wide margins, Marino led the Dolphins to the Super Bowl in his second season in 1984, losing 38-16 to the 49ers. He never made it back.
3. Barry Sanders
Sanders retired after 10 seasons and 10 Pro Bowls, perhaps because the sting of losing with the Lions got to him. He made five playoff appearances but won just one playoff game, in 1991 over the Cowboys.
4. Ty Cobb
Cobb played 24 years in the majors and finished with more than 4,000 hits but never won a World Series. He reached three in a row with the Tigers from 1907 to 1909 (when he was 20, 21 and 22 years old), but the Tigers lost all three times (twice to the Cubs in five games and once to the Pirates in seven games).
|Best active athletes without a title|
|Barry Bonds heads our list of top active athletes who haven't won a championship. Who else makes the list?|
5. Karl Malone
Ahh, the Mailman was supposed to get his ring with the Lakers ... instead, he retires with 19 seasons, two losses in the NBA Finals with the Jazz (both to the Bulls), two MVP trophies, 13 All-Star appearances and second on the all-time points list (to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar).
6. Elgin Baylor
Baylor debuted with the Minneapolis Lakers in 1958-59 and made the All-NBA first team 10 times, but he kept running into the Celtics in the NBA Finals. He'd lose seven times to the Celtics in the Finals and another to the Knicks in 1970. Five of the Finals came down to a seventh game ... and Baylor's Lakers lost them all. Baylor began the 1971-72 season with the Lakers, but he retired after nine games due to knee injuries. The Lakers would finally win the championship that season.
7. Jim Ryun
Perhaps the greatest miler of all time, Ryun would hold world records in the half-mile, mile, 1,500 meters and indoor half-mile. He made it to the Olympics in 1964, 1968 and 1972, but never won a gold medal. The closest he came to gold was a second-place finish in the 1,500 at Mexico City in 1968. In 1972 he was favored for the 1,500 gold, but was tripped and fell in a qualifying heat and failed to make finals.
8. Charles Barkley
In his 16 NBA seasons with the Sixers, Suns, and Rockets, the Round Mound of Rebound reached one NBA Finals, in 1993 when the Michael Jordan's Bulls beat Barkley's Suns in six games.
9. Anthony Munoz
The consensus best offensive lineman in NFL history, the 11-time Pro Bowler spent his entire 13-year career with the Bengals and even made two Super Bowls, losing both times to the 49ers (1981 and 1988 seasons).
10. John Stockton
When he retired last year after 19 seasons in Utah, Stockton had played in 182 playoff games -- but none of them were a clinching game of the NBA Finals. The closest he came to a ring was in 1997 and 1998, when the Jazz lost the Bulls in six games both years.
Also receiving votes:
Juan Marichal, Willie McCovey
Fran Tarkenton, Alan Page