10 Best Offensive Seasons By A Second Baseman

Second base has traditionally been a position manned by the smaller players usually with arms not quite strong or accurate enough for shortstop. With the exception, of Rogers Hornsby it wasn’t until Joe Morgan in the 1970s and Ryne Sandberg in the 1980s changed the idea of an offensive second baseman and paved the way for the next generation of offensive second baseman: Roberto Alomar, Craig Biggio, Jeff Kent, Chase Utley, Robinson Cano, and Dustin Pedroia.

Honorable Mention


  • 10. Joe Morgan, Cincinnati Reds, 1976

  • Joe Morgan was the offensive leader on a teams that won 102 games and it’s second consecutive World Series. He led the majors in WAR, on-base percentage, slugging, and OPS, finished second in runs, rbi, and walks, third in steals, tied with Reggie Jackson and Sal Bando for sixth in home runs, and ninth in batting average. He was also selected to the NL all-star team and won his second consecutive NL MVP.


    Joe Morgan Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    9.6 141 472 113 151 30 5 27 111 60 9 114 41 .320 .444 .576 1.020

  • 9. Nap Lajoie, Philadelphia Athletics, 1901

  • In the first year of the American League Nap Lajoie was its best player. He was the leader on hall of fame manager Connie Mack’s A’s. During the inaugural AL campaign Lajoie led the majors in WAR, runs, hits, doubles, batting average, on-base percentage, slugging, and OPS, finished second in home runs and rbi. In a year when 50 players hit .300 or better Lajoie was the best.


    Nap Lajoie Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    8.4 131 544 145 232 48 14 14 125 27 24 9 .426 .463 .643 1.106

  • 8. Rogers Hornsby, St. Louis Cardinals, 1920

  • This is Rogers Hornsby’s first of seven appearances in the top 10. This may be one of the best offensive seasons by a second baseman but as you’ll see the 24-year old Hornsby’s was just getting warmed up. He finished tied for second with Shoeless Joe Jackson in triples, third in WAR and doubles, tied for third in hits with Shoeless Joe Jackson, fifth in slugging and OPS, and sixth in batting average and on-base percentage. This was Hornsby’s introduction to the big leagues.


    Rogers Hornsby Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    9.6 149 589 96 218 44 20 9 94 12 15 60 50 .370 .431 .559 .990

  • 7. Rogers Hornsby, St. Louis Cardinals, 1921

  • In 1921 Hornsby’s led the Cardinals to 87 wins and had an even better season than the year before. He led the majors in batting average, tied with four other players led the majors in triples, finished second in baseball in WAR, doubles, on-base percentage, slugging, and OPS, tied with six other players for second in games played, finished third in runs scored and hits, fifth in rbi, and sixth in home runs.


    Rogers Hornsby Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    10.8 154 592 131 235 44 18 21 126 13 13 60 48 .397 .458 .639 1.097

  • 6. Nap Lajoie, Cleveland Naps, 1910

  • Lajoie was the best player on what can best be described as a less than steller roster. Yes, they had future hall of famers Cy Young and Addie Joss but Young was 43 and Joss was playing out the final year of his career. And offensively there was a young 22-year old Shoeless Joe Jackson but he was on the bench. In 1910, Lajoie led all of baseball in games played, hits, doubles, batting average, tied with Sherry Magee for second in on-base percentage, finished second in slugging and OPS, third in WAR, and seventh in runs scored.


    Nap Lajoie Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    9.8 159 591 94 227 51 7 4 76 26 60 18 .384 .445 .514 .960

  • 5. Nap Lajoie, Cleveland Naps, 1904

  • Lajoie makes his final appearance on this list. His 1904 season is the greatest offensive season by a second baseman not named Rogers Hornsby. He led all of baseball in WAR, hits, doubles, rbi, batting average, slugging, , and OPS, third in on-base percentage, tied with Tommy Leach and Roy Thomas for eighth in runs scored, and tied for ninth with George Davis in triples.


    Nap Lajoie Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    8.6 140 553 92 208 49 15 5 102 29 27 19 .376 .413 .546 .959

  • 4. Rogers Hornsby, Boston Braves, 1928

  • In his only season in Boston Hornsby continued to shine on the field even though the Braves lost 103 games. He led the majors in batting average and on-base percentage, finished second in walks and OPS, third in WAR and slugging, seventh in home runs, and tied with Carl Lind and Jim Bottomley for seventh in doubles.


    Rogers Hornsby Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    8.8 140 486 99 188 42 7 21 94 5 107 41 .387 .498 .632 1.130

  • 3. Rogers Hornsby, St. Louis Cardinals, 1922

  • The 26-year old Hornsby seemed to be hitting his stride in 1922. He led all of baseball in WAR, runs scored, hits, home runs, slugging, OPS, finished second in doubles, rbi, and batting average, fourth in on-base percentage, seventh in at bats, and tied with Johnny Motsil and Cotton Tierney for ninth in triples.


    Rogers Hornsby Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    10.0 154 623 141 250 46 14 42 152 17 12 65 50 .401 .459 .722 1.181

  • 2. Rogers Hornsby, St. Louis Cardinals, 1925

  • Hornsby may have missed 18 games during the 1925 season but that didn’t stop him from pacing the majors. He led baseball in WAR, home runs, rbi, batting average, on-base percentage, slugging, and OPS, third in runs scored, tied with Lu Blue for sixth in walks, tied for seventh with Dick Burrus and George Burns in doubles, and tied for ninth with Earle Combs in hits.
    He also won the first of his two MVP awards.


    Rogers Hornsby Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    10.2 138 504 133 203 41 10 39 143 5 3 83 39 .403 .489 .756 1.245

  • 1. Rogers Hornsby, St. Louis Cardinals, 1924

  • Hornsby 1924 season is the best season by a second baseman ever. The 28-year old Cardinal led the majors in WAR, hits, and batting average, finished second in on-base percentage, slugging, OPS, tied with Frankie Frisch for second in runs scored, finished third in doubles, fourth in home runs, tied for fourth in walks with Eddie Collins, and tied with Sam Rice and Hughie Critz for ninth in triples. So historic was this season that it is the highest single season batting average since 1901 and the fifth highest single season WAR total trailing only Babe Ruth’s 1923, 1921, and 1927 seasons’s and Carl Yastrzemski’s 1967 season. Truly, one of the greatest seasons of all time.


    Rogers Hornsby Batting Statistics
    WAR G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
    12.1 143 536 121 227 43 14 25 94 11 5 124 85 .361 .487 .662 1.148

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