I would say his defense while maybe not being as terrible as some people say costs him that spot. He had -8 d war. Bench had 70 war and Rodriguez and Fisk had 67. Piazza has 59 war so he comes really close with only a neutral career and possibly on top as an above average defender.
I think walks are overrated unless you can run. If you get a walk and put the pitcher in a stretch, that helps, but the guy who walks and can’t run, most of the time he’s clogging up the bases for somebody who can run. – Dusty Baker.