Power-Hitting third basemen
Eddie Mathews is remembered best for teaming with the great Henry Aaron to form one of the greatest one-two punches of all-time. Their hitting prowess dominated the National League in the 1950s. In 1952, his rookie season, Mathews stroked 25 homers, but he also fanned a league high 115 times. The next season, he hit 47 homeruns to lead the league. For each of the next three seasons, Mathews hit 37 or more homers and knocked in 95 or more runs. In 1957 he batted .292 with 32 HRs, and the Boston Braves won the World Championship. Mathews won the homerun crown in 1959 with 46. Mathews hit 30 or more homeruns in nine seasons. He also scored 95 runs in ten straight seasons, probably because he batted ahead of Aaron. Together, he and Aaron hit 863 homeruns, more than Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. As the years went on, he matured into a solid third baseman, leading the NL in putouts twice, assists three times and fielding average once. Mathews had 512 career HRs and 1,453 runs batted in, and holds the NL single-season record for most RBIs (135) and most total bases (363) by a third baseman. Harmon Killebrew is the leading right-handed homerun hitter in American League history. He had over 40 homers in eight seasons and over 100 runs batted in in ten seasons. A third baseman like Mathews, the “Killer” earned outstanding third baseman honors by the Sporting News one year. In 1959, Killebrew hit a league -leading 42 homers. A strong pull-hitter, he belted 46 in 1961 and led the league from 1962-1964, hitting a total of 142 round-trippers for those three seasons. He also drove in 333 runs. Killebrew won the AL MVP Award in 1969, when he belted 49 homers and drove in 140 runs. The “Killer” had 573 career homeruns and 1,584 runs batted in.
A tough choice here! Mikey goes with Eddie Mathews. Who’s your pick?