Chris Davis speaks on HR milestone
As important as Chris Davis’ 50th home run was to the Orioles in their win on Friday night, it’s worth appreciating just how special it was.
Davis did something that Hank Aaron, Ted Williams, Harmon Killebrew, Reggie Jackson, Mike Schmidt and Willie McCovey never did. Those players all hit at least 500 home runs in their careers, and never hit 50 in a season.
It’s just the 43rd time that a player has had 50 in a season and while some feel the number is devalued because of the artificially inflated totals of the 10 and 15 years ago, it’s a marvelous achievement.
Only Toronto’s Jose Bautista had 50 or more in the past six years, and Davis is the second Oriole to do it. Brady Anderson hit 50 in 1996. His 50th came on the last day of the season, also in Toronto, so Davis has 15 days to surpass Anderson.
The great Frank Robinson, whose record Anderson broke, had arguably the greatest offensive season in team history, winning the Triple Crown with 49 home runs, 122 RBIs and a .316 average.
Davis has surpassed Robinson in home runs and with 129 RBIs. He’s not likely to equal Miguel Tejada’s club record 150 RBIs, but he has become just the third player in major league history with 50 homers and 40 doubles in a season. Only Babe Ruth and Albert Belle did that.
His .296 average also shows that he’s a good average hitter, too. He has 67 singles.
Manager Buck Showalter tried to put into perspective how unlikely it was that Davis would equal these totals next season.
“I hope you all are kind to him next year if he goes back to 30 and 101,” Showalter said on Thursday.
“Every once in a while I go, ‘It’s pretty cool that I get to watch this.’ It’s some kind of year he’s having.”