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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / The Grueling Truth's Top 10 Sports Lists / Top 10 Unbreakable Major League Baseball Records

Top 10 Unbreakable Major League Baseball Records

Publish Date: 07/02/2024
Fact checked by: Mike Goodpaster

Like many discussions regarding sports accomplishments, a list of the most unassailable baseball records is certain to have detractors. Of course, we welcome your well-considered comments, as few, if any, sports greatest-of-all-time debates are chiseled in stone. (Except Secretariat is the greatest thoroughbred, and Rafa Nadal is the clay court G.O.A.T. But we’re talkin’ baseball here!)

In any event, here’s our list:

10. RBIs and total bases

Hank Aaron finished his remarkably consistent HOF career with 2297 RBIs and 6856 total bases. Freddie Freeman is the current player with a remote chance of surpassing these records. However, to catch Aaron, Freeman will need to average 103 RBIs and 291 total bases per season for 11 more years. This is a tall order, indeed, since Freddie is 34 years old. Aaron was one of the best right fielders of all time.

Video: Vin Scully calls Hank Aaron's historic 715th home run

Vin Scully calls Hank Aaron’s historic 715th home run

9. 56-game hit streak 

since Joe DiMaggio accomplished this incredible feat in 1941, the next longest hit streak has been Pete Rose’s 44 games in 1978. No one else has reached 40 in 80+ years, including the 25 players who’ve accumulated 3000 or more hits since 1941. Joltin’ Joe’s record is safe.

Video: Joe DiMaggio's 56-Game Hit Streak in Jeopardy? Unlikely

Joe DiMaggio’s 56-Game Hit Streak in Jeopardy? Unlikely

8. Career on-base percentage 

When Ted Williams hung up his cleats at the finish of the 1960 season, he had officially reached base on nearly half (48.2%) his plate appearances! This is preposterous, and since the current OBP leader, Juan Soto, is 60 percentage points behind, The Splendid Splinter’s accomplishment is likely to be around for many a year.

Video: Joe DiMaggio's 56-Game Hit Streak in Jeopardy? Unlikely

Joe DiMaggio’s 56-Game Hit Streak in Jeopardy? Unlikely

7. Career hits, at bats, games and plate appearances 

You can dislike Pete Rose for betting on baseball, but his accomplishments on the field are legendary. Through his first 21 seasons, he played in 95+% of his teams’ games! This durability, combined with fantastic hitting skills, yielded several records which will stand indefinitely. If only he had avoided his off-field iniquities, first ballot HOF election was a lock.

Video: 9/11/85: Pete Rose's 4,192nd Hit

9/11/85: Pete Rose’s 4,192nd Hit

6. Slugging and OPS 

Statistically speaking, Babe Ruth has to be part of any MLB G.O.A.T discussion (700+ home runs, 2200+ RBIs and a .342 batting average. Even his lifetime pitching stats are 67% wins and a 2.28 ERA.) Plus, the two records he holds – .690 slugging and 1.164 OPS – are unreachable. Of current players, Mike Trout is closest, but he is more than 100 percentage points behind Babe’s slugging and 250 points behind his OPS. George Herman Ruth has nothing to worry about.

Video: Babe Ruth Highlights

Babe Ruth Highlights

5. No-hitters

Sandy Koufax threw four no hitters. No pitcher has thrown five or six. Then there’s Nolan Ryan. He threw seven. Seven!!! (Two were after age 40. Think any hurler will ever toss three after 40? That record is safe, too.) Bonus: 5714 strikeouts remains out of reach. No active pitcher is within 2000 Ks. Koufax was one of the best left-handed pitchers of all time.

Video: 5/1/91: Nolan Ryan's 7th No-Hitter

5/1/91: Nolan Ryan’s 7th No-Hitter

4. Consecutive games played 

Cal Ripken, Jr. didn’t miss a day at work for nearly 16 1/2 years. Beyond remarkable! His streak of 2632 consecutive games played is likely to stand for a long, long time. The current player who hasn’t missed a game lately is Atlanta’s Matt Olson, who is approaching 500 in a row. Only 13 years to go…

Video: Cal Ripken Breaks Lou Gehrig's Record - Standing Ovation (1995)

Cal Ripken Breaks Lou Gehrig’s Record – Standing Ovation (1995)

3. Consecutive no-hitters 

In June 1938, Cincinnati pitcher Johnny Vander Meer tossed a no-hitter. His next start was the first night game at Ebbetts Field, and he no hit the Dodgers. In order to surpass this feat, a hurler would have to pitch back to back to back no-nos. Not, not, not gonna happen.

Video: Johnny Vander Meer: Back to Back No Hitters

Johnny Vander Meer: Back to Back No Hitters

2. Career triples 

during his 19 year career with Cincinnati and Detroit, Sam Crawford hit 309 three-baggers. This record is so unreachable that the closest current player is Colorado’s 37-year-old Charlie Blackmon, who has hit 66. He has averaged five per season, so in about a half-century, he’ll pass Crawford. Good luck, Charlie.

Video: The Forgotten King of Triples in Major League Baseball History | Sam

The Forgotten King of Triples in Major League Baseball History | Sam “Wahoo” Crawford

1. Wins, decisions and complete games 

There’s a good reason the Cy Young Award is named after Denton “Cyclone” Young. During his 22 season career, he started 815 games, completed 749, won 511 and had 826 decisions (11 decisions were as a reliever.) To put in perspective how unfathomably unreachable these stats are: if an 18 year old pitching phenom could start 35 games, win 20, lose 10 and complete 25 every year; he’d pass Young in wins at age 44, decisions at 45 and complete games at 48. Pardon my English, but NO. DAMN. WAY. Denton’s records might even survive the apocalypse, and they’ll definitely live as long as baseball.

Video: Cy Young Complete Game Record: Did This Really Happen?!

Cy Young Complete Game Record: Did This Really Happen?!

Honorable mention

Seven hundred sixty-two home runs, seven MVPs & 2558 walks, including 688 intentionally

Barry, if only you’d done this completely legitimately…

Seven Cy Young awards 

Roger, ditto…

Fastest to 3000 hits

Tris Speaker joined this elite group with only 8263 at-bats, a .363 batting average. Amazing!

Most obscure?

The New York Yankees boast two players – Alex Rodriguez, and Derek Jeter – who entered the 3000 hit club by smashing homers. The chances that another club would have three players do this are less likely than you buying the winning Powerball ticket, and then being struck by lightning… Twice.

There you have it, baseball fans – the most amazing and unreachable records. Thanks for your kind attention, and we look forward to your feedback. Long live America’s pastime!

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