Corey Seager’s breathtaking, record-breaking year
By Cary Osborne
Williams, DiMaggio, Pujols and now Seager.
Corey Seager has had one of the greatest rookie seasons in Dodger history. But it’s bigger than that. The argument could be made that it’s one of the great rookie seasons in baseball history.
Over the course of this year, it seems like every game we’re coming up with a new record he has set or different elite company he has joined.
Here’s an accounting of it.
After Tuesday’s game, Seager is now hitting .316 with 185 hits, 25 home runs and 40 doubles. The only rookies in Major League history, according to Baseball Reference, to hit at least .300 with 25 homers, 40 doubles and 185 hits as a rookie are: Albert Pujols (2001), Nomar Garciaparra (1997), Tony Oliva (1964), Ted Williams (1939), Joe DiMaggio (1936), Hal Trosky (1934) and Dale Alexander (1929).
He is on track to having the greatest OPS+ by a rookie shortstop all time. Chicago Cub Charlie Hollocher (1918) is the current record holder at 134.
Seager has set the following franchise (Brooklyn and L.A.) records:
- Home runs by a shortstop — breaking Glenn Wright’s 1930 mark of 22.
- Homers, hits, doubles, extra-base hits and total bases by a Dodger rookie shortstop.
- He also became the only Dodger rookie to hit three home runs in one game when he did so at Dodger Stadium on June 3. The Elias Sports Bureau came through the day after and ruled that Don Demeter, who was previously thought to be the only Dodger prior to Seager to have a three-homer game as a rookie, had already exceeded rookie qualifications when he went deep three times on April 21, 1959
Seager has also set the following L.A. Dodger records:
- Hits by a rookie — breaking Steve Sax’s 1982 mark of 180. (Dodger all-time record: Johnny Frederick, 1929, 206)
- Doubles by a rookie — breaking Eric Karros’ 1992 mark of 30. (Dodger all-time record: Frederick, 1929, 52)
- Runs by a rookie (99) — breaking Billy Grabarkewitz’s 1970 mark of 92. (Dodger all-time record: Frederick, 1929, 127)
- Total bases by a rookie (308) — breaking Mike Piazza’s 1993 record of 307. (Dodger all-time record: Frederick, 1929, 342)
Seager’s other feats
- His 19-game hitting streak was one short of the L.A. rookie record, set by Tommy Davis in 1960. Jackie Robinson set the franchise record of 21 in 1947.
- Seager would really have to heat up to break Garciaparra’s rookie record for home runs by a shortstop of 30. But he’s just two behind Trevor Story for the all-time National League mark. Story, the Rockies shortstop who is out for the season, hit his 27th homer on July 24.
- If Seager finishes in the NL top 10 in batting average, he will be the third Dodger rookie in the last 100 years to do so, joining Piazza (1993) and Babe Herman (1926).
- Just 40 rookies have OPSed .900 or higher. Seager’s OPS after Tuesday was .900.
- Only two Dodger rookies have had a WAR (wins above replacement) of 6.0 or higher — Piazza (7.0) and Grabarkewitz (6.5). There have been 20 rookies who have OPSed 6.0 or higher in Major League history. Seager is at 6.0.
- Seager is one of only five rookie shortstops in history with at least 55 multi-hit games: Garciaparra, Harvey Kuenn (1953), Johnny Pesky (1942), Stan Rojek (1948). Garciaparra has the all-time mark at 68. Seager is two behind Pittsburgh’s Rojek for the NL record of 57.
- Seager is third all-time behind Piazza (35) and Joc Pederson (26) in home runs by a Dodger rookie.
Out of breath? Of course. That’s what Seager’s rookie year has been — breathtaking.