Which is harder to do?

Millz

LGB
Staff member
V.I.P.
#1
I'm listening to our local ESPN channel here in St Louis and they are having this debate...

Which is harder to do...

Hit .400 for a season or...

Win the Triple Crown (Lead in average, homers, rbi's)

Neither of these have happened for a very long time so I'm interested in knowing which you think is harder to do. I did some digging and found some interesting information. The following are individuals who have won the Triple Crown for the entire LEAGUE. When you hear the triple crown these days you only think of winning the NL or AL Triple Crown. These are the only people who have ever won the triple crown by leading the entire league in all three categories:

Ty Cobb in 1909
Rogers Hornsby in 1925
Lou Gehrig in 1934
Ted Williams in 1942
Micky Mantle in 1956

That's only 5 players in the history of Major League Baseball. Just something cool to look at.

Is it harder to win the Triple Crown because you have to be excellent in THREE categories? Or is it better to be lucky then good? I think there's a ton more luck involved with hitting for the triple crown. If everyone else has a down year then you can win the triple crown without having your best season. To hit .400 you have to, well, hit .400. That's 2 hits for every 5 at bats...that's ridiculous to think of someone doing in this day in age.

I think the triple crown is "sexier" to achieve but I think hitting .400 is much much harder to do. There could have been a ton more people to hit the triple crown who just lost by a couple Rbis' or a percentage points in a batting average.

If someone asked me if I'd rather Pujols win the Triple Crown or hit .400 I'd tell them I'd rather he hit .400. Why? Because if he's hitting .400 then chances are his power numbers are going to be extremely high as well. The majority of the guys who hit .400 did in the dead-ball era becausae it was a different game. We've seen guys since then hit for the triple crown...it happened in the 60s. I think you'll see guys flirt with the triple crown but .400? I dont see it happening.

Thoughts?
 

Babe_Ruth

Sultan of Swat
Staff member
V.I.P.
#2
I as well believe hitting .400 is harder to hit then getting the Triple Crown. Yes to get the Triple Crown you need to be the best at three major categories, but hitting .400 you need to be hot all season, you can't go in a slump.

The last player to hit .400 for a season was Ted Williams, an interesting timbit about that season is that Williams was hitting .396 before his last two games, which were a double header. He played the first game, got enough hits to finish the season .400. The coach told him he doesn't have to play the second game, he said he wanted to play. He finish that afternoon 6-8. That simply amazing.
 

Major

4 legs good 2 legs bad
V.I.P.
#3
I agree with you, I think hitting .400 in the modern game is more difficult than the Triple Crown. To hit .400 you have to be at your best every single game. That's true for the Triple Crown as well, but to a lesser extent. If you lead the league in home runs, chances are you're going to be near the top in RBI too. If you can hit for both average and power like Albert Pujols, you have a chance of winning the Triple Crown.

Wasn't Larry Walker flirting with .400 one year for most of the season? Maybe Tony Gwynn too.
 

Millz

LGB
Staff member
V.I.P.
#4
I as well believe hitting .400 is harder to hit then getting the Triple Crown. Yes to get the Triple Crown you need to be the best at three major categories, but hitting .400 you need to be hot all season, you can't go in a slump.

The last player to hit .400 for a season was Ted Williams, an interesting timbit about that season is that Williams was hitting .396 before his last two games, which were a double header. He played the first game, got enough hits to finish the season .400. The coach told him he doesn't have to play the second game, he said he wanted to play. He finish that afternoon 6-8. That simply amazing.
That's the type of player Ted Williams was. I think if it were me I would have sat out the 2nd game of the double header...I wouldnt want to take the chance. But that's me haha.

Seriously, you have to be 2-5 on average all season long. I dont see it happening.

I agree with you, I think hitting .400 in the modern game is more difficult than the Triple Crown. To hit .400 you have to be at your best every single game. That's true for the Triple Crown as well, but to a lesser extent. If you lead the league in home runs, chances are you're going to be near the top in RBI too. If you can hit for both average and power like Albert Pujols, you have a chance of winning the Triple Crown.

Wasn't Larry Walker flirting with .400 one year for most of the season? Maybe Tony Gwynn too.
Tony Gwynn was hitting .394 in 1994 before the strike pre-maturely ended the baseball season. Incredible season...wish we could have seen how it played out.