There’s the Sultan of Swat, Hammerin’ Hank, and one of the Bash Brothers. All three certainly didn’t get their nicknames from being slap hitters, knocking singles through the infield. What they do have in common is that Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, and Mark McGwire are all part of the top 10 all-time home run list for Major League Baseball. Deep fly balls and rocket line drives soaring over the fence, are what fans best remember these 10 players by, but the real question is, who out of the top 10, is the greatest overall hitter of the group? Do you go with the player who had the highest career batting average? That would be Ruth, who hit .342 for his career. Or is it the player who had the most career hits out of the greatest home run hitters in baseball history? Here, Aaron reigns supreme, with his 3,771 career hits to go along with 755 home runs.
The offseason is a time for awards and other sports fans getting mad that we’re still talking about baseball. But, part of the beauty of baseball is that is seems to never stop. In the offseason, the hot stove is turned up with free agent and trade rumors that have to do with a team’s future, yet we still love to talk about the past. In this case, the hot stove is a wood burner of the past.
Perhaps, there is a different way to look at this question. I broke down the hit rates for each player in the top 10, showing what type of hit they produced most and least often over the duration of their career.