15 MLB Records That Will Never Be Broken
The Allure Of Baseball History
Throughout the history of sports there has been no league that romanticizes its history and time stopping moments as MLB does. Whether it be the famous speech by Lou Gehrig when he proclaims himself to be the luckiest man on the face of the earth, the legendary race between Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris to 61 home runs in 1961, or Hank Aaron shaking a fan's hand as he rounded third base after hitting home run number 715, there is no doubting that baseball has more moments etched in the public's mind than any other sport.
What ties all of these three legendary moments together is that they all had to do with the history books of MLB, which could be even more immortal to baseball fans than the actual on-field product today. After all looking at the numbers allows one the possibility of comparing Ty Cobb, Joe Dimaggio, Wilie Mays, and Mike Trout, and the way that baseball has largely stayed the same throughout the years allows one to do this quite effectively. This has rang true despite the steroid era trying its best to assault these record books, and there is no doubting that baseball history has remained a spot where fans can look to when feeling a bit nostalgic.
With baseball currently in the midst of its offseason we have found ourselves caught in these feelings of nostalgia and decided to do something to relieve this feeling. As a result we have decided to take a look at the 15 MLB records that will never be broken with many of these feats having stood the test of time already.
15. Nap Lajoie - .421 Average In One Season
In what is the longest standing record in MLB history, Nap Lajoie hit .421 for the Philadelphia A's all the way back in 1901. To put the age of this feat into perspective, one must consider that Lou Gehrig was not born yet, neither World War had yet occurred, and the Soviet Union did not exist. Furthermore no player has even hit over .400 since Ted Williams did so in 1941 for the Boston Red Sox, and in 2013 the highest batting average in baseball was .348 courtesy of Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera. Suffice to say this record is not going to be topped at any time in the future.
14. Jack Chesboro - 41 Wins In One Season
In the second longest current standing record pitcher Jack Chesboro recorded a whopping 41 wins for the New York Highlanders in 1904. If you are wondering just how one could win 41 games in a single season, you must consider that Chesboro appeared in 55 games throughout the season -- starting 51 -- and threw 454.2 innings. To compare this output to modern day baseball, it must be considered that the two pitchers who led MLB in wins the last two seasons -- Max Scherzer and Gio Gonzalez -- won a total of 42 games and pitched 413.2 innings. After looking at this it should become painfully obvious that no pitcher will ever win 41 games in a single season again.
13. Barry Bonds - 73 Home Runs In Single Season
In what is the most controversial item on this list, Barry Bonds' 73 home run season in 2001 for the San Francisco Giants will live on forever. While the way that he achieved these home runs will forever be tainted by steroid allegations, it is clear with the steroid era coming to an end that it is a mini-miracle to see one player hit even 50 home runs. Unless this record gets stripped from the books because of the use of illegal drugs -- or MLB moves to a 200 game regular season -- it will live on forever.
12. Rickey Henderson - 2295 Career Runs Scored
Rickey Henderson was an absolute force at the top of the lineup for every team he played during a 25 year career, and as a result he had a number of opportunities to get on base and let the big boppers drive him in. This plan worked to a tee, as Henderson scored 100 or more runs 13 different times and picked up the MLB record with 2295 career runs scored. In order to break this one would have to score an average of 100 runs for 23 straight years, and while this is not impossible on paper it does appear to be impossible in practice.
11. Yogi Berra - 10 Career World Series Wins
Throughout his career Yogi Berra was known for his quirky and oftentimes confusing quotes that either made you laugh or just shake your head. But what was lost in his personality was that Berra was a natural born winner, as proven by his MLB record 10 World Series titles as a player. There is no doubting that this was in large part aided by playing on a number of New York Yankees teams that are regarded as some of the top teams ever, but one would have to be crazy to disregard this record.
10. Mariano Rivera - 652 Career Saves
In what is most current record on this list, the record 652 career saves compiled by Mariano Rivera will live on forever. The reason for this is because many of the top closers in MLB do not move into the position until midway through their careers, and those that do start early are often marred by arm injuries. Additionally, in order to reach this total they would have to average 32.6 saves for 20 straight years, a level of consistency that has proven impossible for anyone without the number 42 on their back.
9. Nolan Ryan - 7 Career No-Hitters
When looking at the record seven career no-hitters that Nolan Ryan threw many people are left with their jaws hanging in amazement. The Texan's compilation of no-hitters spanned 14 years, three franchises and three decades. Simply put, it seems like it should be impossible. Aside from this record total the next highest person on the list of career no-hitters is Sandy Koufax at four, and no active pitcher has thrown more than two no-hitters. It is safe to say that Ryan has this record firmly in hand.
8. Babe Ruth - 177 Runs Scored In One Season
When Babe Ruth retired from baseball in 1935 he held a massive 54 records. Although many of these records have fallen to the test of time it is clear that his 177 runs scored in 1921 will stand forever. This is because there were simply no teams that have ever been as potent at the plate as the Bronx Bombers in the 1920s, and with the current state of baseball promoting parity there never will be again. The closest that any modern day player has gotten to this record is 152 runs scored by Jeff Bagwell in 2000, and although this was a commendable effort it still falls well short of Ruth's record.
7. Pete Rose - 4256 Career Hits
Although many people may disagree with the things that Pete Rose did off the diamond, there is no doubting that he was one of the fiercest competitors and best hitters in MLB history. Over his 24 year career with the Cincinnati Reds, Philadelphia Phillies and Montreal Expos he was an absolute hit machine with his 4256 hits being a feat that displayed talent, longevity and a bit of luck. The closest player to this record in MLB today is Derek Jeter, although at 3316 hits and 39 years of age it would be a miracle to see him -- or anyone else -- pass this record.
6. Tris Speaker - 792 Career Doubles
The ultimate line drive hitter, Tris Speaker picked up a MLB record 792 career doubles while only hitting 117 home runs. Granted this came in a career that lasted from 1907 to 1928 -- when fences were much deeper than they are today -- but there is no doubting that Speaker's achievement is one to marvel at. He averaged an incredible 36 doubles per season over a 22 year career, a mix of efficiency and length that seemingly gets harder and harder as the years pass by.
5. Rickey Henderson - 1406 Career Stolen Bases
Throughout Rickey Henderson's 25 year MLB career he was both the most enigmatic personality in the league and also its best base stealer. No other baseball player has ever been as prolific a base stealer as Henderson with his 1406 career stolen bases ranking 468 above Lou Brock's 938. In 2013 Jacoby Ellsbury led MLB with a total of 52 stolen bases that would make Henderson chuckle to himself, and with the active career leader being Juan Pierre at 614 it is okay to say this record will be safe going forward.
4. Nolan Ryan - 5714 Career Strikeouts
In his second appearance on this list, Nolan Ryan holds a record 5714 strikeouts that looks likely to stand the test of time. This is because Ryan pitched for an eye popping 26 years and averaged an even more staggering 219.8 strikeouts per year over this lengthy time period. Today recording 200 strikeouts in one season is a great accomplishment, and a 26 year career has been an anomaly at any point in baseball history. Out of active players C.C. Sabathia is the closest to the record at 2389 career strikeouts, and after watching him struggle in 2013 it is safe to say he does not have 3325 strikeouts left in his left arm.
3. Joe Dimaggio - 56 Game Hit Streak
When Joe Dimaggio compiled a 56 game hit streak in 1941 he not only bested Willie Keeler's record of 45 by a lengthy margin, but he also set a standard that will not ever again be matched. Since the record was compiled the closest person to this record was Pete Rose with a 44 game hit streak in 1978, and the closest player since 2000 was Jimmy Rollins with 38 games streak in 2005 to 2006. In modern day baseball it appears that teams are more willing to walk a guy approaching this streak four times than to let him get a hit, which will likely help preserve Dimaggio whenever one player actually does seriously approach his record.
2. Cy Young - 511 Games Won
In a testament to his durability and effectiveness, Cy Young compiled an absolutely ridiculous total of 511 wins during a career that spanned from 1890 to 1911. Over this time Young won 20 or more games 15 times and pitched 300 or more innings 16 times, paving the way for the Cy Young Award to be named after his exploits. What it also did was entrench his 511 wins into the top of the record books forever as Walter Johnson is the only other pitcher with more than 400 wins. Many people believe that the days of the 300 game winner are coming to an end in MLB.
1. Cal Ripken - 2632 Consecutive Games Played
Once upon a time there was a belief that the 2130 consecutive games that Lou Gehrig played in would stand as a record forever, but Cal Ripken, Jr. took the record and made it truly insurmountable. When Ripken did finally take a game off he had appeared in 2632 straight games, or the equivalent of 16.25 full seasons. No manager would even dare allow a player to approach this record today, and even if they did it is nearly impossible to believe any player would be able to keep away from any injuries for 2633 straight games. This record will remain immortal throughout history.