What If We Changed the Triple Crown to AVG/OBP/SLG?

Just having some fun today with baseball history, I went looking for a list of players who’ve accomplished the feat of having a season in which he held the batting, on-base and slugging titles.

The list is pretty incredible–and exclusive. Rogers Hornsby had seven of these years, though it was mostly dominance of a weak National League. His counterparts in the AL, like Cobb and Ruth, had other batting title champs to worry about, like George Sisler and Eddie Collins.

The thing I found most fascinating was the separation between the tradition triple crown and this one. No players have accomplished the traditional triple crown since 1967 Yaz. In this triple crown, not only has it been accomplished as recently as last year, but there were lots of years filled in. George Brett’s 1980 season and Larry Walker’s 1999 season. Barry Bonds, of course, made the list twice.

Anyway, without further ado, here’s your modern Triple Crown winners:

1887 Tip O’Neill
1901 Nap Lajoie
1904 Nap Lajoie
1904 Honus Wagner
1907 Honus Wagner
1908 Honus Wagner
1909 Ty Cobb
1909 Honus Wagner
1914 Ty Cobb
1916 Tris Speaker
1917 Ty Cobb
1920 Rogers Hornsby
1921 Rogers Hornsby
1922 Rogers Hornsby
1923 Rogers Hornsby
1924 Babe Ruth
1924 Rogers Hornsby
1925 Rogers Hornsby
1928 Rogers Hornsby
1933 Chuck Klein
1934 Lou Gehrig
1938 Jimmie Foxx
1941 Ted Williams
1942 Ted Williams
1943 Stan Musial
1947 Ted Williams
1948 Ted Williams
1948 Stan Musial
1957 Ted Williams
1966 Frank Robinson
1967 Carl Yastrzemski
1979 Fred Lynn
1980 George Brett
1999 Larry Walker
2000 Todd Helton
2002 Barry Bonds
2004 Barry Bonds
2009 Joe Mauer

Amazing that in 1924, the league has two triple crown winners.

1956 Mickey Mantle is remarkably cut from the list, as a .464 OBP didn’t cut the mustard (Ted Williams bested him with a .479 OBP).

Likewise, 1937 Joe Medwick doesn’t make the cut.

The most surprising is Jimmie Foxx, who conquered the traditional triple crown in 1933, but not the AVG/OBP/SLG TC that year–yet, he accomplished our TC in 1938.

Another really interesting note is that 1923 Babe Ruth had an extremely high average (.393), higher than even 1924 Ruth, and that was the only thing holding him back from another AOS triple crown.

1961 Norm Cash wins the “close but no cigar” award for winning the BA and OBP easily, but barely losing out on the slugging (.662) because of a certain Mickey Mantle’s chase for 60 home runs (Mantle had a .687 slugging that year).

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1 Comment

Filed under MLB, MLB history

One response to “What If We Changed the Triple Crown to AVG/OBP/SLG?

  1. Pingback: A Follow-Up on Average/OBP/SLG Triple Crown and on Matt Kemp staying in LA | Dingers

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