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3,000 hit club

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In Major League Baseball, the 3,000 hit club is an informal term applied to the group of players who have made 3000 or more career base hits. Currently, there are 30 players who have accomplished this. Ichiro Suzuki of the Miami Marlins is the latest player to achieve this milestone, having done so on August 7, 2016 in Denver, CO. In addition to the 30 players in the 3,000 hit club, there is a total of 93 players with 2,500 hits.

A player's 3,000th hit is not a surprise, as the player has been gradually approaching the mark for some time. However, teams will often interrupt the game in which the player reaches the mark in order to honor him on reaching a historically significant milestone, a mark that usually emphasizes an excellent baseball career. The first to accomplish the feat was Cap Anson in 1897, before what is known as the "modern era of baseball," making the 3,000 hit club one of the oldest markers of greatness in the sport. Getting 3,000 hits is generally considered — barring severe bad behavior off the field — one of the most reliable marks of a player who deserves admission to the Hall of Fame. Not only that, but all but one eligible player who has reached the 3,000 hit club after 1962 (the first year players got inducted on the first ballot) has gotten in the Hall of Fame on the first ballot.

The 3,000 hits mark indicates consistent performance over a long period of time. A position player who starts regularly might typically get 600 at-bats per year, of which a good hitter will bat safely in roughly 180-200 — between a .300 and a .333 batting average. Since most players only play for up to 8-10 years at the Major League level, and usually decline significantly in their numbers toward the end of that period, only a player who remains healthy over a long period and can continue to play like a younger man into his late 30s and even his early 40s can successfully amass 3,000 hits.

Rarely mentioned is the 4,000 hit club, which only has two members (Pete Rose and Ty Cobb). Cobb was both the fastest and the youngest player in history to achieve 3,000 hits. He reached the mark in his 2,135th game when he was 34 years, 243 days old. Cobb was also the youngest player to reach 1,000, 2,000 and 4,000 hits. Cobb achieved all these feats while playing in the American League. Tony Gwynn was the fastest player in National League history to hit the 3,000 mark; he reached the mark in his 2,284th game. Hank Aaron was the youngest NL player to accomplish 3,000 hits; he achieved the feat at 36 years, 100 days old.

After a slump in the 1980s, the 1990s saw seven players reaching 3000 hits, tied with the 1970s for the most of any decade.

See also: Career Hit Leaders.


[edit] The members

Player Hits Date of 3000th Teams Seasons
Pete Rose 4256 May 5, 1978 Cincinnati, Philadelphia, Montreal 1963-1986
Ty Cobb 4191[1] August 19, 1921 Detroit, Philadelphia (AL) 1905-1928
Hank Aaron 3771 May 17, 1970 Milwaukee/Atlanta, Milwaukee 1954-1976
Stan Musial 3630 May 13, 1958 St. Louis 1941-1963
Tris Speaker 3514 May 17, 1925 Boston, Cleveland, Washington, Philadelphia (AL) 1907-1928
Derek Jeter 3465 July 9, 2011 New York (AL) 1995-2014
Carl Yastrzemski 3419 September 12, 1979 Boston 1961-1983
Cap Anson 3418[2] July 18, 1897 Rockford, Philadelphia (NA), Chicago (NL) 1871-1897
Honus Wagner 3415 June 9, 1914 Louisville, Pittsburgh 1897-1917
Paul Molitor 3319 September 16, 1996 Milwaukee, Toronto, Minnesota 1978-1998
Eddie Collins 3315 June 6, 1925 Philadelphia (AL), Chicago (AL) 1906-1930
Willie Mays 3283 July 18, 1970 New York (NL)/San Francisco, New York (NL) 1951-1973
Eddie Murray 3255 June 30, 1995 Baltimore, Los Angeles, New York (NL), Cleveland, Anaheim 1977-1997
Nap Lajoie 3242 September 27, 1914 Philadelphia (AL), Cleveland 1896-1916
Cal Ripken, Jr. 3184 April 15, 2000 Baltimore 1981-2001
George Brett 3154 September 30, 1992 Kansas City 1973-1993
Paul Waner 3152 June 19, 1942 Pittsburgh, Boston (NL), Brooklyn, New York (AL) 1926-1945
Robin Yount 3142 September 9, 1992 Milwaukee 1974-1993
Tony Gwynn 3141 August 6, 1999 San Diego 1982-2001
Alex Rodriguez 3115 June 19, 2015 Seattle, Texas, New York (AL) 1994-2016
Dave Winfield 3110 September 16, 1993 San Diego, New York (AL), California, Toronto, Minnesota, Cleveland 1973-1995
Craig Biggio 3060 June 28, 2007 Houston 1988-2007
Rickey Henderson 3055 October 7, 2001 Oakland, New York (AL), Toronto, San Diego, Anaheim, New York (NL), Seattle, Boston, Los Angeles (NL) 1979-2003
Rod Carew 3053 August 4, 1985 Minnesota, California 1967-1985
Lou Brock 3023 August 13, 1979 Chicago (NL), St. Louis 1961-1979
Rafael Palmeiro 3020 July 15, 2005 Chicago (NL), Texas, Baltimore 1986-2005
Wade Boggs 3010 August 7, 1999 Boston, New York (AL), Tampa Bay 1982-1999
Al Kaline 3007 September 24, 1974 Detroit 1953-1974
Roberto Clemente 3000 September 30, 1972 Pittsburgh 1955-1972
Ichiro Suzuki* 3000 August 7, 2016 Seattle, New York (AL), Miami 2001-

* Hit total on day he joined the club

[edit] Closest Active Players

as of the close of the 2015 season and not including Ichiro Suzuki who reached 3,000 hits in 2016.

Player Hits Teams Seasons
Adrian Beltre 2767 Los Angeles (NL), Seattle, Boston, Texas 1998-
Albert Pujols 2666 St. Louis, Los Angeles (AL) 2001-
Carlos Beltran 2454 Kansas City, Houston, New York (NL), San Francisco, St. Louis, New York (AL) 1998-

[edit] Just Missed the Cut

Player Hits Teams Seasons
Sam Rice 2987 Washington Senators, Cleveland Indians 1915-1934
Sam Crawford 2961 Cincinnati Reds, Detroit Tigers 1899-1917
Frank Robinson 2943 Cincinnati Reds, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, California Angels, Cleveland Indians 1956-1976
Barry Bonds 2935 Pittsburgh Pirates, San Francisco Giants 1986-2007
Jake Beckley 2934 Pittsburgh Pirates, Pittsburgh Burghers, New York Giants, Cincinnati Reds, St. Louis Cardinals 1888-1907
Rogers Hornsby 2930 St. Louis Cardinals, New York Giants, Boston Braves, Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Browns 1915-1937
Al Simmons 2927 Philadelphia Athletics, Chicago White Sox, Detroit Tigers, Washington Senators, Boston Braves, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Red Sox 1924-1944

[edit] 4,000 hit club

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The exclusive "4,000 hit club" is an informal term referring to members of an elite group of hitters: those players that have reached 4,000 hits on their careers. Currently, only two players have made the 4,000 hit club - Pete Rose and Ty Cobb. The next closest player to the club is Hank Aaron, with 3,771 hits.

[edit] The members

Player Hits Date of 4000th Teams Seasons
Pete Rose 4256 April 13, 1984 Cincinnati, Philadelphia, Montreal 1963-1986
Ty Cobb 4191[1] July 18,1927 Detroit, Philadelphia (AL) 1905-1928

[edit] 4000 Hits in Professional Baseball

While ony two players have collected 4000 hits in the majors, 9 players have reached the total if all of their professional hits are counted; these include hits in both the American major and minor leagues, as well as hits in various top level professional leagues elsewhere and postseason major league hits.

Name Years Major League Hits Minor League Hits Other Hits Postseason Hits Total Hits Notes
Pete Rose 1960-1986 4256 427 - 86 4769
Ty Cobb 1904-1928 4189 166 7 17 4379 1
Hank Aaron 1952-1976 3771 324 125 25 4245 2
Ichiro Suzuki* 1992-present 2935 - 1278 27 4240 3
Derek Jeter 1992-2014 3465 554 - 200 4219
Jigger Statz 1919-1942 737 3356 - - 4093
Minnie Minoso 1945-1993 1963 1144 966 - 4073 4
Julio Franco 1978-2014 2586 980 442 22 4030 5
Stan Musial 1938-1963 3630 371 - 22 4023

*As of the end of the 2015 season

  1. Other hits are in professional games in Cuba
  2. Other hits include 84 in Puerto Rican League and 41 in Negro Leagues
  3. Other hits are in Nippon Pro Baseball
  4. Minor league hits include 715 in Mexican League; other hits include 838 in Cuban League and 128 in Negro Leagues
  5. Minor league hits include 348 in Mexican League; other hits include 286 in Nippon Pro Baseball and 156 in the Korea Baseball Organization

[edit] References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Major League Baseball still lists Cobb's hit total at 4,191, but almost all independent baseball historians have revised the total to 4,189.
  2. A number of disagreements exist over the correct hit total for Anson: see "Career hits total".

[edit] Further Reading

  • Bob Nightengale: "As Ichiro closes in, Pete Rose chafes: 'They're trying to make me the Hit Queen'", USA Today Sports, June 14, 2016. [1]
  • Scott Simkus: "Ichiro Suzuki, Minnie Minoso and 4,000 career 'professional' hits", SABR, August 22, 2013. [2]
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