Friday, February 15, 2008

Most Home Runs, SLG < .300

It's getting harder to have a slugging percentage under .300 and play a lot in a single season. Only four players since 2000 have qualified for the batting title (502+ PA) with a slugging percentage under .300; only twenty-one got as many as 300 plate appearances. That makes it unlikely these records will be broken anytime soon, but you never know.

I thought it would be interesting to see the highest home run totals among players with slugging percentages of .300 or below. It's obvious that there's no way to increase your slugging percentage faster than to hit a home run, so anyone who hits a decent number of home runs would have to be pretty bad at getting any other hits to qualify. The guys below certainly hit badly.

Most HR in a Season, SLG < .300

1Don Wert196812.299
Dave Valle19918.299

Roger Repoz19698.288
Jose Oliva19957.284

Mike Pagliarulo19897.299

Barry Foote19757.295

Mike Andrews19727.297

Jimmy Wynn19717.295

Ray Oyler19697.267

Dave Duncan19687.293

Bill Robinson19677.281

Sam Bowens19657.296

Bobby Knoop19647.280

Roy McMillan19617.293

Harry Chiti19607.296

Jack Dittmer19527.291

Travis Jackson19367.297

In his twelve home run season, Wert had 107 hits in 536 at bats, for a .200 batting average. He had 15 doubles and 1 triple to go with his dozen homers. To me, the most impressive season on the list is Ray Oyler's 1969 for the Seattle Pilots. I already knew he was an incredibly bad hitter, showing up three times on this list of futility. In 1969, however, he reached a career high in home runs while putting up a .165/.260/.267 line in 255 at bats.

The career list for home runs while slugging below .300 is more interesting. There are a lot of pitchers on the list, which makes sense because they tend to have longer careers than position players who don't hit well. The names of the players on the list who weren't pitchers are written in red text.

Most Career HR, SLG < .300

1Warren Spahn35.287
2Bobby Wine30.286
Don Drysdale29.295
Mike Ryan28.280
Julio Cruz23.299
Johnnie LeMaster22.289

Tom Egan22.299
Dick Schofield21.297
Mark Belanger20.280

Milt Pappas20.197
Bruce Benedict18.299

Hector Torres18.281
12Early Wynn17.285
Jim Kaat16.267

Billy Hunter16.294
Gene Michael15.284

Don Cardwell15.216

Ray Oyler15.251

Pedro Ramos15.240

Joe Nuxhall15.292

Dick Donovan15.248

Johnny Antonelli15.271

Claude Passeau15.274

Al Glossop15.291

Hal Schumacher15.287

Lefty Grove15.207

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