BY Steve Rudman 10:24AM 07/03/2013

Rauuuuuuuu! Hitting Homers And Milestones

Raul Ibanez is on a record pace for home runs by a player his age (41). He has 20 and needs nine more to tie Ted Williams’ MLB mark of 29 set in 1960.

Raul Ibanez hit his 20th home run Tuesday night in Arlington, becoming the fifth player 41 years old or older to accomplish the feat. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest

Although overshadowed Tuesday night by the two home runs and career-high tying six RBIs by Kendrys Morales, Raul Ibanez belted his 20th long ball in Seattle’s 9-2 romp over the Texas Rangers. Ibanez has homered in six of his past eight games and since May 10 has hit 18 home runs, third-most in the major leagues over that span. This is a remarkable burst of pop made more astonishing by Ibanez’s age: 41.

Ibanez is nine home runs away from tying Ted Williams’ major league record for most by a player 41 years old or older, 29 in 1960. His Tuesday night shot, in the first inning off Justin Grimm, also made him the fifth player 41 or older to reach the 20-homer mark, as the chart shows, and the first to hit 20 prior to the All-Star break:

Year Player Team Age Pre-ASB Total
1960 Ted Williams Boston 41 14 29
2007 Barry Bonds San Francisco 42 17 28
2006 Barry Bonds San Franicsco 41 12 26
1988 Darrell Evans Detroit 41 13 22
1993 Dave Winfield Minnesota 41 13 21
2013 Raul Ibanez Seattle 41 20 20
1962 Stan Musial St. Louis 41 12 19
1991 Carlton Fisk Chicago White Sox 43 7 18
1990 Carlton Fisk Chicago White Sox 42 7 18
1982 Carl Yastrzemski Boston 42 11 16
1986 Graig Nettles San Diego 41 12 16

Perhaps more impressive is that Ibanez reached the 20-homer mark while playing in 62 of the Mariners’ 83 games. If he maintained his current pace and played in all of Seattle’s remaining games, Ibanez would finish with 45.

That’s a longshot at Ibanez’s age, but he certainly figures to give Williams a run for the record. A few other key points about Ibanez:

  • Ibanez has already surpassed the 19 he hit all of last season while playing for the New York Yankees.
  • His .554 slugging percentage represents a career bigh, exceeding the .552 mark he posted for Philadelphia in 2009, when he made his only All-Star team. His .852 on-base + slugging mark is his best since his .899, also in 2009.
  • Ibanez is the first Seattle player to reach 20 home runs before the All-Star break since Russell Branyan hit 22 in 2009.
  • The 10 home runs Ibanez had in June were the most by a Mariner in a calendar month since Edgar Martinez also had 10 in May of 2003.
  • Ibanez led Seattle in homers (10) and RBIs (22) in June, making him the oldest American League player to lead a team in both categories in any calendar month since Dave Winfield did it for the Twins in July of 1993, also at 41.
  • Ibanez has accounted for 20.8 percent of Seattle’s 96 home runs. When Ken Griffey Jr. poked 56 homers for the 1997 Mariners, he accounted for 21.1 percent of the 264 total.

Ibanez and the Mariners continue their three-game series in Texas Friday at 5:05 p.m. Felix Hernandez (8-4, 2.70) is opposite LHP Derek Holland (6-4, 3.14). Hernandez has already lost to Texas twice this year and is 12-18 with a 3.87 ERA in 36 career starts.

 

 


YourThoughts

  • jafabian

    Raul is in a zone right now. His AB’s are a study in hitting as that he patiently waits for the pitch he wants. Something that the younger players on the team needs follow. With his average now over .250 I’d say he’s the teams All-Star rep moreso than Felix or Iwakuma. But hopefully all three go to the All-Star game.