Friday, November 23, 2007

Most PA in a Season, No Extra Base Hits

It's hard to play baseball for a long time as a position player and not get at least one extra base hit. Even if it's a home run off the sweet spot of the bat or a hustling bloop double, a player's line for a season generally won't be full of zeros in the 2B, 3B, and HR column. Unless, of course, they're one of the many pitchers that don't hit well, but they're in their own little universe (and don't count for these lists). Today I have two lists of players that didn't manage to get extra base hits after all. The first is the most PA in a season from 1901 to 1919 (the dead-ball era) and the second shows the most PA in a season from 1920 to the present.

Most PA in a Season, No Extra Base Hits, 1901-1919:
  1. Jack O'Connor, 184 PA, 1906
  2. Mike McNally, 151, 1916
  3. Bill Stumpf, 143, 1912
  4. Otis Lawry, 137, 1916
  5. Gene Good, 135, 1906
  6. Bill McKechnie, 129, 1913
  7. Grover Land, 119, 1910
  8. Bill Carrigan, 118, 1906
  9. Mike Massey, 114, 1917
  10. Dave Shean, 110, 1919
Most PA in a Season, No Extra Base Hits, 1920-2007:
  1. Dwain Anderson, 144 PA, 1973
  2. Dave Nelson, 137, 1969
  3. Pat Corrales, 135, 1972
  4. Mike Gallego, 132, 1995
  5. Bob Swift, 118, 1951
  6. Paul Casanova, 113, 1974
  7. Frank Baumholtz, 112, 1956
  8. Doc Ferrell, 112, 1933
  9. Tom Egan, 109, 1974
  10. John Simmons, 107, 1949
The way I took pitchers out was to say anyone who appeared in over 50% of their games as anything but a pitcher counts. Oddly, Lynn Nelson, a righthanded starting pitcher for the 1938 Philadelphia Athletics showed up on my 1920-2007 list. Some investigation revealed he pitched in 32 games but batted in 67, meaning he showed up 35 times as a pinch-hitter. He had 119 plate appearances without an extra base hit that season, so it seems weird he'd continually be used. Looking back one year to 1937, however, you see he had a .354/.387/.549 line in 120 PA, including 4 home runs (and 6 games in left field), so I guess they were hoping it wasn't a fluke. Unfortunately, he never hit that well again.

For the curious: Chris Heintz, a Twins catcher, had the most PA without an extra base hit in 2007 with 61.

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