Wednesday, August 20, 2014
New York Mets' Howard Johnson Has Second 30/30 Season
On Aug. 20, 1989, New York Mets' slugger Howard Johnson joins Bobby Bonds and Willie Mays as the only players to have more than one season with 30 home runs and 30 stolen bases.
The players who had done it once before Johnson had done it twice included Ken Williams, Hank Aaron, Tommy Harper, Dale Murphy, Joe Carter and Eric Davis, as the only players to hit 30 home runs and steal 30 bases in a single season. Mays completed the feat twice and Bonds five times before Johnson did it his second time.
Since Johnson joined the club of players to complete the feat twice in 1989, these players have joined the club once; Darryl Strawberry, Jose Canseco, Dante Bichette, Ellis Burks, Barry Larkin, Larry Walker, Shawn Green, Alex Rodriguez, Preston Wilson, Carlos Beltran, Jose Cruz Jr., David Wright, Jimmy Rollins, Brandon Phillips, Grady Sizemore, Hanley Ramirez, Matt Kemp, Jacoby Ellsbury and Mike Trout last year.
Johnson would go on to complete the feat a third time in 1991, putting him in an elite class with just Bobby Bonds, and then later to be joined by Barry Bonds who completed the feat five times during his career and Alfonso Soriano who has completed the feat four times so far in his career.
Other players to have more than one 30-30 season include; Ron Gant, Sammy Sosa, Jeff Bagwell, Raul Mondesi, Vladimir Guerrero, Bobby Abreu, Ian Kinsler and Ryan Braun.
Of the players to join the 30-30 club, only these players had a 40-40 season; Canseco 42 home runs, 40 steals; Barry Bonds 42 home runs, 40 steals; Alex Rodriguez 42 home runs and 46 steals; Alfonso Soriano 46 home runs and 41 steals.
The only players on the list to be inducted into the Hall of Fame include Mays, Aaron and Larkin.
Johnson ended his career as a two-time All-Star, a two-time World Series Champion, a two-time Silver Slugger Award winner. He was also the National League Home Run Champion and NL RBI Champion in 1991.
Three times Johnson was in the MVP conversation, being in the top 10 in voting three times, and in the top five in voting twice.
Johnson would finish his 14-year career with a .249 batting average, with 1,229 hits with 237 doubles, 22 triples and 228 home runs. He also had 760 runs scored, 760 RBIs, 692 walks, 231 stolen bases and struck out 1,053 times.
Johnson led the league in runs scored once, with his highest single season total of 108 coming in 1991, although he did not lead the league that year. He also led the league in home runs once, with his highest single season total of 38 coming in 1991. Also in 1991 Johnson led the league in RBIs, that was also the year he hit his highest single season total of 117.
The 1991 season was a great one for Johnson as he set several records as he became the only switch-hitter to ever lead the NL in both home runs and RBIs in the same season. He also became the only Met to lead the National League in RBI. Finally he became the first switch-hitter to lead the National League in RBI. (Lance Berkman became the second in 2002.)
In 2001, Johnson was on the Baseball Hall of Fame ballot but received no votes.
Currently Johnson is part of the Seattle Mariners franchise as a Hitting Coach for the 2014 season part of the new coaching staff that was put in place during the off season.