List of Major League Baseball batting champions

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Portrait of a man wearing a high collar, held closed with a safety pin.
Ty Cobb won more batting titles than any other player, though the precise number is unclear because of the race in the 1910 American League.

In baseball, batting average (AVG) is a measure of a batter's success rate in achieving a hit during an at bat. In Major League Baseball (MLB), it is calculated by dividing a player's hits by his at bats (AB); in MLB, a player in each league[L] wins the "batting title" each season for having the highest batting average that year.[1][2] The American League (AL) winner is known as the "Rod Carew American League Batting Champion", while the National League (NL) leader is designated the "Tony Gwynn National League Batting Champion". Under current rules, a player must have 3.1 plate appearances (PA) per team game (for a total of 502 over the current 162-game season) to qualify for the batting title.[3] However, if a player's lead in AVG is sufficiently large that enough hitless at bats can be added to reach this requirement and the player still would have the highest batting average, he wins the title.[3] Tony Gwynn, for example, had 159 hits in 451 ABs in 1996 (.353 average) but only 498 PAs.[4] Gwynn's batting average would have dropped to .349 (159 hits in 455 ABs) with four hitless ABs added to reach the 502 PA requirement, but this would still have been higher than the next-highest eligible player (.344 average), so he was awarded the 1996 NL batting title.[5]

The first batting average champion in the NL was Ross Barnes; in the league's inaugural 1876 season, Barnes batted .429 for the Chicago White Stockings.[6] The AL was established in 1901, and Hall of Fame second baseman Nap Lajoie led that league with a .426 average for the Philadelphia Athletics.[7] Ty Cobb of the Detroit Tigers, who also holds the highest career batting average of .366, led the AL in average in 11 (or 12) seasons.[8] Honus Wagner and Gwynn are tied for the second-most titles, with eight apiece in the NL.[4][9] It is unclear whether Lajoie or Cobb won the 1910 AL title, with some sources attributing the title to each man.[1910a] If Cobb is credited with the 1910 title, he won 9 consecutive titles from 1907 to 1915 and 12 total titles for his career. Otherwise, Rogers Hornsby won the most consecutive titles, with six from 1920 to 1925. Without the 1910 title, Cobb still led the league in five consecutive seasons from 1911 to 1915. Cobb holds the record for highest average in two and three consecutive seasons (.414 from 1911 to 1912 and .408 from 1911 to 1913), but Hornsby holds the record for four and five consecutive seasons (.404 from 1922 to 1925 and .402 from 1921 to 1925).[10] Wagner, Rod Carew, Wade Boggs, and Gwynn have each won four consecutive titles. Lajoie also had a streak of four league-leading seasons from 1901 to 1904 if he is credited with the contested AL title in 1902,[1902a] at the 2016 MLB All-Star Game in San Diego, MLB announced that the AL and NL batting champions would henceforth be named in honor of Carew and Gwynn, respectively. Gwynn won all eight titles in the NL with the San Diego Padres, while Carew was a seven-time AL batting champion.[11][12]

Barnes' initial NL-leading average of .4286 in 1876 set the single-season record which stood for a decade.[13] Tip O'Neill topped this total with a .4352 average in 1887 (that batting average had to be calculated without counting walks as hits, because of the walk-as-base-hit rule being in effect that year only), and Hugh Duffy set the current record mark in 1894 by posting a .4397 batting average.[13] Under the current 3.1 PA qualification, players have posted a .400 batting average for a season 28 times.[14] Ted Williams' .4057 in 1941 is the most recent such season, one of 13 to occur since 1900.[14] George Brett in 1980 is the only player to maintain a .400 average into September since 1941.[15] Additionally, only Brett and John Olerud in 1993 maintained such an average into August,[15] with the modern scarcity of .400 hitters, recent players who have been above .400 early in the season, such as Chipper Jones in 2008, have drawn significant attention in the media.[15][16] Brett's .390 in 1980 and Gwynn's .394 in 1994 are the only seasons in which a player reached .390 since 1941. Carl Yastrzemski's .301 in the 1968 American League was the lowest batting average ever to lead a league. Willie Keeler's 1897 and Zack Wheat's 1918 are the only two title seasons in which the winner hit no home runs.[17][18] Joe Mauer's 2006 title made him the first catcher to ever win an AL batting title, and his third title in 2009 surpassed Ernie Lombardi's previous record of two titles for a catcher in any league.[19][20][21][22]

The closest finish in a batting race came in 1945 when Snuffy Stirnweiss batted .309, topping Tony Cuccinello's .308 average for the American League title by .00008.[23][24] George Kell beat out Williams in 1949 by .00015.[23] The closest race in the National League came in 2003 when Albert Pujols held off Todd Helton on the last day of the season by .00022.[23][25] The closest National League race before that was in 1931 with Chick Hafey edging out Bill Terry by .00028.[23] Lajoie's .426 average in 1901 was 86 points higher than runner-up Mike Donlin's .340, the largest margin of victory for a batting champion. Cap Anson's .399 in 1881 was 71 points higher than Joe Start in 1881, the widest margin in the National League. No player has definitively won batting titles in both the American and National Leagues. However, Ed Delahanty has if he is credited with the disputed 1902 American League title, as he was also the 1899 National League champion, the only other player to win titles in multiple leagues was Pete Browning, who won American Association titles in 1882 and 1885, along with the lone Players' League championship in 1890. Barnes and Deacon White each won National Association and National League titles, but the National Association is not regarded as an official league.[L]

In 1990, Willie McGee posted a .335 average over 542 at-bats in the NL before being traded to the AL on August 29.[26] Although McGee finished the season in the AL, he had enough PA's in the NL to qualify for the NL batting title, which he won narrowly over Eddie Murray's .330. However, McGee batted .274 that season in the AL, bringing down his overall average to .324 and allowing Murray to lead the majors in batting average.[26][27]

Key[edit]

Winner Player with the highest batting average (AVG) in the league
AVG The winner's batting average
Runner-up Player with the second-highest batting average in the league
2nd AVG The second-highest batting average
League Denoted only for players outside of the modern major leagues
Member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum

National League[edit]

A mustachioed man in a dark jacket with a broad collar, white shirt, and dark tie.
Ross Barnes' .429 in 1876 set a single-season record that stood for a decade.
Paul Hines won two consecutive NL batting titles in 1878 and 1879.
Hugh Duffy set the current single-season record when he batted .440 in 1894.
Willie Keeler won two consecutive NL batting titles in 1897 and 1898.
A man in a dark baseball cap and white shirt with a dark collar holds a baseball bat in both hands.
Honus Wagner was the first batter to win eight NL batting titles and won four consecutive titles during that run.
Rogers Hornsby won seven NL batting titles, including six consecutively from 1920 to 1925.
Stan Musial won seven NL batting titles from 1943 to 1957.
Albert Pujols won the closest NL batting race in 2003.
Year Winner AVG Team(s) Runner-up 2nd AVG Ref
1876 Ross Barnes .429 Chicago White Stockings George Hall .366 [28]
1877 Deacon White .387 Boston Red Caps John Cassidy .378 [29]
1878 Paul Hines .358 Providence Grays Abner Dalrymple .354 [30]
1879 Paul Hines .357 Providence Grays Jim O'Rourke .348 [31]
1880 George Gore .360 Chicago White Stockings Cap Anson .337 [32]
1881 Cap Anson .399 Chicago White Stockings Martin Powell .338 [33]
1882 Dan Brouthers .368 Buffalo Bisons Cap Anson .362 [34]
1883 Dan Brouthers .374 Buffalo Bisons Roger Connor .357 [35]
1884 King Kelly .354 Chicago White Stockings Jim O'Rourke .347 [36]
1885 Roger Connor .371 New York Giants Dan Brouthers .359 [37]
1886 King Kelly .388 Chicago White Stockings Cap Anson .371 [38]
1887 Sam Thompson .372 Detroit Wolverines Cap Anson .347 [39]
1888 Cap Anson .344 Chicago White Stockings Jimmy Ryan .332 [40]
1889 Dan Brouthers .373 Boston Beaneaters Jack Glasscock .352 [41]
1890 Jack Glasscock .336 New York Giants Billy Hamilton .325 [42]
1891 Billy Hamilton .340 Philadelphia Phillies Bug Holliday .319 [43]
1892 Dan Brouthers .335 Brooklyn Grooms Billy Hamilton .330 [44]
1893 Billy Hamilton .380 Philadelphia Phillies Sam Thompson .370 [45]
1894 Hugh Duffy .440 Boston Beaneaters Tuck Turner .418 [46]
1895 Jesse Burkett .405 Cleveland Spiders Ed Delahanty .404 [47]
1896 Jesse Burkett .410 Cleveland Spiders Hughie Jennings .401 [48]
1897 Willie Keeler .424 Baltimore Orioles Fred Clarke .390 [49]
1898 Willie Keeler .385 Baltimore Orioles Billy Hamilton .369 [50]
1899 Ed Delahanty .410 Philadelphia Phillies Jesse Burkett .396 [51]
1900 Honus Wagner .381 Pittsburgh Pirates Elmer Flick .367 [52]
1901 Jesse Burkett .376 St. Louis Cardinals Ed Delahanty .354 [53]
1902 Ginger Beaumont .357 Pittsburgh Pirates Sam Crawford .333 [54]
1903 Honus Wagner .355 Pittsburgh Pirates Fred Clarke .351 [55]
1904 Honus Wagner .349 Pittsburgh Pirates Mike Donlin .329 [56]
1905 Cy Seymour .377 Cincinnati Reds Honus Wagner .363 [57]
1906 Honus Wagner .339 Pittsburgh Pirates Harry Steinfeldt .327 [58]
1907 Honus Wagner .350 Pittsburgh Pirates Sherry Magee .328 [59]
1908 Honus Wagner .354 Pittsburgh Pirates Mike Donlin .334 [60]
1909 Honus Wagner .339 Pittsburgh Pirates Mike Mitchell .310 [61]
1910 Sherry Magee .331 Philadelphia Phillies Vin Campbell .326 [62]
1911 Honus Wagner .334 Pittsburgh Pirates Doc Miller .333 [63]
1912 Heinie Zimmerman .372 Chicago Cubs Chief Meyers .358 [64]
1913 Jake Daubert .350 Brooklyn Superbas Gavvy Cravath .341 [65]
1914 Jake Daubert .329 Brooklyn Robins Beals Becker .325 [66]
1915 Larry Doyle .320 New York Giants Fred Luderus .315 [67]
1916 Hal Chase .339 Cincinnati Reds Jake Daubert .316 [68]
1917 Edd Roush .341 Cincinnati Reds Rogers Hornsby .327 [69]
1918 Zack Wheat .335 Brooklyn Robins Edd Roush .333 [70]
1919 Edd Roush .321 Cincinnati Reds Rogers Hornsby .318 [71]
1920 Rogers Hornsby .370 St. Louis Cardinals Ross Youngs .351 [72]
1921 Rogers Hornsby .397 St. Louis Cardinals Edd Roush .352 [73]
1922 Rogers Hornsby .401 St. Louis Cardinals Ray Grimes .354 [74]
1923 Rogers Hornsby .384 St. Louis Cardinals Jim Bottomley .371 [75]
1924 Rogers Hornsby .424 St. Louis Cardinals Zack Wheat .375 [76]
1925 Rogers Hornsby .403 St. Louis Cardinals Jim Bottomley .367 [77]
1926 Bubbles Hargrave .353 Cincinnati Reds Cuckoo Christensen .350 [78]
1927 Paul Waner .380 Pittsburgh Pirates Rogers Hornsby .361 [79]
1928 Rogers Hornsby .387 Boston Braves Paul Waner .370 [80]
1929 Lefty O'Doul .398 Philadelphia Phillies Babe Herman .381 [81]
1930 Bill Terry .401 New York Giants Babe Herman .393 [82]
1931 Chick Hafey .349 St. Louis Cardinals Bill Terry .349 [83]
1932 Lefty O'Doul .368 Brooklyn Dodgers Bill Terry .350 [84]
1933 Chuck Klein .368 Philadelphia Phillies Spud Davis .349 [85]
1934 Paul Waner .362 Pittsburgh Pirates Bill Terry .354 [86]
1935 Arky Vaughan .385 Pittsburgh Pirates Joe Medwick .353 [87]
1936 Paul Waner .373 Pittsburgh Pirates Babe Phelps .367 [88]
1937 Joe Medwick .374 St. Louis Cardinals Johnny Mize .364 [89]
1938 Ernie Lombardi .342 Cincinnati Reds Johnny Mize .337 [90]
1939 Johnny Mize .349 St. Louis Cardinals Frank McCormick .332 [91]
1940 Debs Garms .355 Pittsburgh Pirates Ernie Lombardi .319 [92]
1941 Pete Reiser .343 Brooklyn Dodgers Johnny Cooney .319 [93]
1942 Ernie Lombardi .330 Boston Braves Enos Slaughter .318 [94]
1943 Stan Musial .357 St. Louis Cardinals Billy Herman .330 [95]
1944 Dixie Walker .357 Brooklyn Dodgers Stan Musial .347 [96]
1945 Phil Cavarretta .355 Chicago Cubs Tommy Holmes .352 [97]
1946 Stan Musial .365 St. Louis Cardinals Johnny Hopp .333 [98]
1947 Harry Walker .363 St. Louis Cardinals
Philadelphia Phillies
Bob Elliott .317 [99]
1948 Stan Musial .376 St. Louis Cardinals Richie Ashburn .333 [100]
1949 Jackie Robinson .342 Brooklyn Dodgers Stan Musial .338 [101]
1950 Stan Musial .346 St. Louis Cardinals Jackie Robinson .328 [102]
1951 Stan Musial .355 St. Louis Cardinals Richie Ashburn .344 [103]
1952 Stan Musial .336 St. Louis Cardinals Frank Baumholtz .325 [104]
1953 Carl Furillo .344 Brooklyn Dodgers Red Schoendienst .342 [105]
1954 Willie Mays .345 New York Giants Don Mueller .342 [106]
1955 Richie Ashburn .338 Philadelphia Phillies Willie Mays .319 [107]
1956 Hank Aaron .328 Milwaukee Braves Bill Virdon .319 [108]
1957 Stan Musial .351 St. Louis Cardinals Willie Mays .333 [109]
1958 Richie Ashburn .350 Philadelphia Phillies Willie Mays .347 [110]
1959 Hank Aaron .355 Milwaukee Braves Joe Cunningham .345 [111]
1960 Dick Groat .325 Pittsburgh Pirates Norm Larker .323 [112]
1961 Roberto Clemente .351 Pittsburgh Pirates Vada Pinson .343 [113]
1962 Tommy Davis .346 Los Angeles Dodgers Frank Robinson .342 [114]
1963 Tommy Davis .326 Los Angeles Dodgers Roberto Clemente .320 [115]
1964 Roberto Clemente .339 Pittsburgh Pirates Rico Carty .330 [116]
1965 Roberto Clemente .329 Pittsburgh Pirates Hank Aaron .318 [117]
1966 Matty Alou .342 Pittsburgh Pirates Felipe Alou .327 [118]
1967 Roberto Clemente .357 Pittsburgh Pirates Tony González .339 [119]
1968 Pete Rose .335 Cincinnati Reds Matty Alou .332 [120]
1969 Pete Rose .348 Cincinnati Reds Roberto Clemente .345 [121]
1970 Rico Carty .366 Atlanta Braves Joe Torre .325 [122]
1971 Joe Torre .363 St. Louis Cardinals Ralph Garr .343 [123]
1972 Billy Williams .333 Chicago Cubs Ralph Garr .325 [124]
1973 Pete Rose .338 Cincinnati Reds César Cedeño .320 [125]
1974 Ralph Garr .353 Atlanta Braves Al Oliver .321 [126]
1975 Bill Madlock .354 Chicago Cubs Ted Simmons .332 [127]
1976 Bill Madlock .339 Chicago Cubs Ken Griffey, Sr. .336 [128]
1977 Dave Parker .338 Pittsburgh Pirates Rennie Stennett .336 [129]
1978 Dave Parker .334 Pittsburgh Pirates Steve Garvey .316 [130]
1979 Keith Hernandez .344 St. Louis Cardinals Pete Rose .331 [131]
1980 Bill Buckner .324 Chicago Cubs Keith Hernandez .321 [132]
1981 Bill Madlock .341 Pittsburgh Pirates Pete Rose .325 [133]
1982 Al Oliver .331 Montreal Expos Bill Madlock .319 [134]
1983 Bill Madlock .323 Pittsburgh Pirates Lonnie Smith .321 [135]
1984 Tony Gwynn .351 San Diego Padres Lee Lacy .321 [136]
1985 Willie McGee .353 St. Louis Cardinals Pedro Guerrero .320 [137]
1986 Tim Raines .334 Montreal Expos Steve Sax .332 [138]
1987 Tony Gwynn .370 San Diego Padres Pedro Guerrero .338 [139]
1988 Tony Gwynn .313 San Diego Padres Rafael Palmeiro .307 [140]
1989 Tony Gwynn .336 San Diego Padres Will Clark .333 [141]
1990 Willie McGee .335 St. Louis Cardinals Eddie Murray .330 [142]
1991 Terry Pendleton .319 Atlanta Braves Hal Morris .318 [143]
1992 Gary Sheffield .330 San Diego Padres Andy Van Slyke .324 [144]
1993 Andrés Galarraga .370 Colorado Rockies Tony Gwynn .358 [145]
1994 Tony Gwynn .394 San Diego Padres Jeff Bagwell .368 [146]
1995 Tony Gwynn .368 San Diego Padres Mike Piazza .346 [147]
1996 Tony Gwynn .353 San Diego Padres Ellis Burks .344 [5]
1997 Tony Gwynn .372 San Diego Padres Larry Walker .366 [148]
1998 Larry Walker .363 Colorado Rockies John Olerud .354 [149]
1999 Larry Walker .379 Colorado Rockies Luis Gonzalez .336 [150]
2000 Todd Helton .372 Colorado Rockies Moisés Alou .355 [151]
2001 Larry Walker .350 Colorado Rockies Todd Helton .336 [152]
2002 Barry Bonds .370 San Francisco Giants Larry Walker .338 [153]
2003 Albert Pujols .359 St. Louis Cardinals Todd Helton .358 [25]
2004 Barry Bonds .362 San Francisco Giants Todd Helton .347 [154]
2005 Derrek Lee .335 Chicago Cubs Albert Pujols .330 [155]
2006 Freddy Sanchez .344 Pittsburgh Pirates Miguel Cabrera .339 [156]
2007 Matt Holliday .340 Colorado Rockies Chipper Jones .337 [157]
2008 Chipper Jones .364 Atlanta Braves Albert Pujols .357 [158]
2009 Hanley Ramírez .342 Florida Marlins Pablo Sandoval .330 [159]
2010 Carlos González .336 Colorado Rockies Joey Votto .324 [160]
2011 José Reyes .337 New York Mets Ryan Braun .332 [161]
2012 Buster Posey .336 San Francisco Giants Andrew McCutchen .327 [162]
2013 Michael Cuddyer .331 Colorado Rockies Chris Johnson .321 [163]
2014 Justin Morneau .319 Colorado Rockies Josh Harrison .315 [164]
2015 Dee Gordon .333 Miami Marlins Bryce Harper .330 [165]
2016 DJ LeMahieu .348 Colorado Rockies Daniel Murphy .347 [166]
2017 Charlie Blackmon .330 Colorado Rockies Justin Turner .321 [167]

American League[edit]

A man with dark hair in a dark baseball cap and a white baseball jersey with "CLEVELAND" on the chest.
Nap Lajoie led the American League in its inaugural season with a .426 batting average, one of just 13 seasons of a .400+ average in the 20th century. In addition, Lajoie was a part of two separate contested batting average races in 1902 and 1910.
Ted Williams won six AL batting titles. He hit .406 in 1941, and that is the last time a player has hit over .400.
Rod Carew won seven AL batting titles between 1969 and 1978.
George Brett's .390 batting average in 1980 is the second-highest since 1941.
Ichiro Suzuki won AL batting titles in 2001 and 2004.
A man in a left-handed batting stance wearing pinstriped gray pants, a black shinguard on his right leg, a dark blue baseball jersey, and a dark-colored batting helmet.
Joe Mauer won the 2006, 2008, and 2009 batting titles, becoming the first catcher to win three batting titles and the only catcher ever to win in the AL.
Year Winner AVG Team(s) Runner-up 2nd AVG Ref
1901 Nap Lajoie .426 Philadelphia Athletics Mike Donlin .340 [168]
1902 Disputed[1902b]
1903 Nap Lajoie .344 Cleveland Naps Sam Crawford .335 [169]
1904 Nap Lajoie .376 Cleveland Naps Willie Keeler .343 [170]
1905 Elmer Flick .308 Cleveland Naps Willie Keeler .302 [171]
1906 George Stone .358 St. Louis Browns Nap Lajoie .355 [172]
1907 Ty Cobb .350 Detroit Tigers Sam Crawford .323 [173]
1908 Ty Cobb .324 Detroit Tigers Sam Crawford .311 [174]
1909 Ty Cobb .377 Detroit Tigers Eddie Collins .347 [175]
1910 Ty Cobb
1911 Ty Cobb .420 Detroit Tigers Shoeless Joe Jackson .408 [176]
1912 Ty Cobb .409 Detroit Tigers Shoeless Joe Jackson .395 [177]
1913 Ty Cobb .390 Detroit Tigers Shoeless Joe Jackson .373 [178]
1914 Ty Cobb .368 Detroit Tigers Eddie Collins .344 [179]
1915 Ty Cobb .369 Detroit Tigers Eddie Collins .332 [180]
1916 Tris Speaker .386 Cleveland Indians Ty Cobb .371 [181]
1917 Ty Cobb .383 Detroit Tigers George Sisler .353 [182]
1918 Ty Cobb .382 Detroit Tigers George Burns .352 [183]
1919 Ty Cobb .384 Detroit Tigers Bobby Veach .355 [184]
1920 George Sisler .407 St. Louis Browns Tris Speaker .388 [185]
1921 Harry Heilmann .394 Detroit Tigers Ty Cobb .389 [186]
1922 George Sisler .420 St. Louis Browns Ty Cobb .401 [187]
1923 Harry Heilmann .403 Detroit Tigers Babe Ruth .393 [188]
1924 Babe Ruth .378 New York Yankees Charlie Jamieson .359 [189]
1925 Harry Heilmann .393 Detroit Tigers Tris Speaker .389 [190]
1926 Heinie Manush .378 Detroit Tigers Babe Ruth .372 [191]
1927 Harry Heilmann .398 Detroit Tigers Al Simmons .392 [192]
1928 Goose Goslin .379 Washington Senators Heinie Manush .378 [193]
1929 Lew Fonseca .369 Cleveland Indians Al Simmons .365 [194]
1930 Al Simmons .381 Philadelphia Athletics Lou Gehrig .379 [195]
1931 Al Simmons .390 Philadelphia Athletics Babe Ruth .373 [196]
1932 Dale Alexander .367 Detroit Tigers
Boston Red Sox
Jimmie Foxx .364 [197]
1933 Jimmie Foxx .356 Philadelphia Athletics Heinie Manush .336 [198]
1934 Lou Gehrig .363 New York Yankees Charlie Gehringer .356 [199]
1935 Buddy Myer .349 Washington Senators Joe Vosmik .348 [200]
1936 Luke Appling .388 Chicago White Sox Earl Averill .378 [201]
1937 Charlie Gehringer .371 Detroit Tigers Lou Gehrig .351 [202]
1938 Jimmie Foxx .349 Boston Red Sox Jeff Heath .343 [203]
1939 Joe DiMaggio .381 New York Yankees Jimmie Foxx .360 [204]
1940 Joe DiMaggio .352 New York Yankees Luke Appling .348 [205]
1941 Ted Williams .406 Boston Red Sox Cecil Travis .359 [206]
1942 Ted Williams .356 Boston Red Sox Johnny Pesky .331 [207]
1943 Luke Appling .328 Chicago White Sox Dick Wakefield .316 [208]
1944 Lou Boudreau .327 Cleveland Indians Bobby Doerr .325 [209]
1945 Snuffy Stirnweiss .309 New York Yankees Tony Cuccinello .308 [24]
1946 Mickey Vernon .353 Washington Senators Ted Williams .342 [210]
1947 Ted Williams .343 Boston Red Sox Barney McCosky .328 [211]
1948 Ted Williams .369 Boston Red Sox Lou Boudreau .355 [212]
1949 George Kell .343 Detroit Tigers Ted Williams .343 [213]
1950 Billy Goodman .354 Boston Red Sox George Kell .340 [214]
1951 Ferris Fain .344 Philadelphia Athletics Minnie Miñoso .326 [215]
1952 Ferris Fain .327 Philadelphia Athletics Dale Mitchell .323 [216]
1953 Mickey Vernon .337 Washington Senators Al Rosen .336 [217]
1954 Bobby Ávila .341 Cleveland Indians Ted Williams .345[1954] [218]
1955 Al Kaline .340 Detroit Tigers Vic Power .319 [219]
1956 Mickey Mantle .353 New York Yankees Ted Williams .345 [220]
1957 Ted Williams .388 Boston Red Sox Mickey Mantle .365 [221]
1958 Ted Williams .328 Boston Red Sox Pete Runnels .322 [222]
1959 Harvey Kuenn .353 Detroit Tigers Al Kaline .327 [223]
1960 Pete Runnels .320 Boston Red Sox Al Smith .315 [224]
1961 Norm Cash .361 Detroit Tigers Al Kaline .324 [225]
1962 Pete Runnels .326 Boston Red Sox Mickey Mantle .321 [226]
1963 Carl Yastrzemski .321 Boston Red Sox Al Kaline .312 [227]
1964 Tony Oliva .323 Minnesota Twins Brooks Robinson .317 [228]
1965 Tony Oliva .321 Minnesota Twins Carl Yastrzemski .312 [229]
1966 Frank Robinson .316 Baltimore Orioles Tony Oliva .307 [230]
1967 Carl Yastrzemski .326 Boston Red Sox Frank Robinson .311 [231]
1968 Carl Yastrzemski .301 Boston Red Sox Danny Cater .290 [232]
1969 Rod Carew .332 Minnesota Twins Reggie Smith .309 [233]
1970 Alex Johnson .329 California Angels Carl Yastrzemski .329 [234]
1971 Tony Oliva .337 Minnesota Twins Bobby Murcer .331 [235]
1972 Rod Carew .318 Minnesota Twins Lou Piniella .312 [236]
1973 Rod Carew .350 Minnesota Twins George Scott .306 [237]
1974 Rod Carew .364 Minnesota Twins Jorge Orta .316 [238]
1975 Rod Carew .359 Minnesota Twins Fred Lynn .331 [239]
1976 George Brett .333 Kansas City Royals Hal McRae .332 [240]
1977 Rod Carew .388 Minnesota Twins Lyman Bostock .336 [241]
1978 Rod Carew .333 Minnesota Twins Al Oliver .324 [242]
1979 Fred Lynn .333 Boston Red Sox George Brett .329 [243]
1980 George Brett .390 Kansas City Royals Cecil Cooper .352 [244]
1981 Carney Lansford .336 Boston Red Sox Tom Paciorek .326 [245]
1982 Willie Wilson .332 Kansas City Royals Robin Yount .331 [246]
1983 Wade Boggs .361 Boston Red Sox Rod Carew .339 [247]
1984 Don Mattingly .343 New York Yankees Dave Winfield .340 [248]
1985 Wade Boggs .368 Boston Red Sox George Brett .335 [249]
1986 Wade Boggs .357 Boston Red Sox Don Mattingly .352 [250]
1987 Wade Boggs .363 Boston Red Sox Paul Molitor .353 [251]
1988 Wade Boggs .366 Boston Red Sox Kirby Puckett .356 [252]
1989 Kirby Puckett .339 Minnesota Twins Carney Lansford .336 [253]
1990 George Brett .329 Kansas City Royals Rickey Henderson .325 [254]
1991 Julio Franco .341 Texas Rangers Wade Boggs .332 [255]
1992 Edgar Martínez .343 Seattle Mariners Kirby Puckett .329 [256]
1993 John Olerud .363 Toronto Blue Jays Paul Molitor .332 [257]
1994 Paul O'Neill .359 New York Yankees Albert Belle .357 [258]
1995 Edgar Martínez .356 Seattle Mariners Chuck Knoblauch .333 [259]
1996 Alex Rodriguez .358 Seattle Mariners Frank Thomas .349 [260]
1997 Frank Thomas .347 Chicago White Sox Edgar Martínez .330 [261]
1998 Bernie Williams .339 New York Yankees Mo Vaughn .337 [262]
1999 Nomar Garciaparra .357 Boston Red Sox Derek Jeter .349 [263]
2000 Nomar Garciaparra .372 Boston Red Sox Darin Erstad .355 [264]
2001 Ichiro Suzuki .350 Seattle Mariners Jason Giambi .342 [265]
2002 Manny Ramirez .349 Boston Red Sox Mike Sweeney .340 [266]
2003 Bill Mueller .326 Boston Red Sox Manny Ramirez .325 [267]
2004 Ichiro Suzuki .372 Seattle Mariners Melvin Mora .340 [268]
2005 Michael Young .331 Texas Rangers Alex Rodriguez .321 [269]
2006 Joe Mauer .347 Minnesota Twins Derek Jeter .344 [270]
2007 Magglio Ordóñez .363 Detroit Tigers Ichiro Suzuki .351 [271]
2008 Joe Mauer .328 Minnesota Twins Dustin Pedroia .326 [272]
2009 Joe Mauer .365 Minnesota Twins Ichiro Suzuki .352 [273]
2010 Josh Hamilton .359 Texas Rangers Miguel Cabrera .328 [274]
2011 Miguel Cabrera .344 Detroit Tigers Michael Young .338 [275]
2012 Miguel Cabrera .330 Detroit Tigers Mike Trout .326 [276]
2013 Miguel Cabrera .348 Detroit Tigers Joe Mauer .324 [277]
2014 José Altuve .341 Houston Astros Victor Martinez .335 [278]
2015 Miguel Cabrera .338 Detroit Tigers Xander Bogaerts .320 [279]
2016 José Altuve .338 Houston Astros Mookie Betts .318 [280]
2017 José Altuve .346 Houston Astros Avisail García .330 [281]

Other major leagues[edit]

A man in a white pinstriped baseball uniform with a white baseball cap.
Benny Kauff won the only two Federal League batting titles in 1914 and 1915.
Year Winner AVG Team League Runner-up 2nd AVG Ref
1882 Pete Browning .378 Louisville Eclipse American Association Hick Carpenter .342 [282]
1883 Ed Swartwood .357 Pittsburgh Alleghenys American Association Pete Browning .338 [283]
1884 Dave Orr .354 New York Metropolitans American Association John Reilly .339 [284]
1884 Fred Dunlap .412 St. Louis Maroons Union Association Orator Shafer .360 [285]
1885 Pete Browning .362 Louisville Colonels American Association Dave Orr .342 [286]
1886 Guy Hecker .341 Louisville Colonels American Association Pete Browning .340 [287]
1887 Tip O'Neill .435 St. Louis Browns American Association Pete Browning .402 [288]
1888 Tip O'Neill .335 St. Louis Browns American Association John Reilly .321 [289]
1889 Tommy Tucker .372 Baltimore Orioles American Association Tip O'Neill .335 [290]
1890 Chicken Wolf .363 Louisville Colonels American Association Denny Lyons .354 [291]
1890 Pete Browning .373 Cleveland Infants Players' League Dave Orr .371 [292]
1891 Dan Brouthers .350 Boston Reds American Association Hugh Duffy .326 [293]
1914 Benny Kauff .370 Indianapolis Hoosiers Federal League Steve Evans .348 [294]
1915 Benny Kauff .342 Brooklyn Tip-Tops Federal League William Fischer .329 [295]

Footnotes[edit]

  • L Recognized "major leagues" include the current American and National Leagues and several defunct leagues – the American Association, the Federal League, the Players' League, and the Union Association.[296]
  • 1902a 1902b Sources differ as to whether Nap Lajoie or Ed Delahanty won the American League batting title in 1902 and differ slightly over Lajoie's precise statistics that season. The Hall of Fame credits Lajoie with 129 hits in 352 at bats (.368)[297] while MLB and Baseball-Reference.com show 133 hits in 352 at bats (.378).[298][299] According to Baseball-Reference a player qualified for a batting title prior to 1920 by appearing in 60% of his team's games—82 games in the 136 game schedule in 1902—and Lajoie appeared in 87 team games.[298][300][301] As such, Baseball-Reference credits Lajoie with the 1902 title, with Delahanty's .376 batting average placing second.[302] MLB's historical statistics leaderboards, however, use the modern standard of 3.1 plate appearances per team game (422 in that season) which Lajoie fell 37 short of.[298] Thus, MLB credits Delahanty with the 1902 title with his .376 average.[303] Similarly the Hall of Fame lists the 1902 title on Delahanty's plaque and not Lajoie's.[297][304]
  • 1910a 1910b Before the 1910 season, Hugh Chalmers of Chalmers Automobile announced he would present a Chalmers Model 30 automobile to the player with the highest batting average at the end of the season. The 1910 race for best average in the American League was between Nap Lajoie of the Cleveland Indians and the Detroit Tigers' widely disliked[305][306][307] Cobb, on the last day of the season, Lajoie overtook Cobb's batting average with seven bunt hits in a doubleheader against the St. Louis Browns. Browns' manager Jack O'Connor supposedly told his third baseman Red Corriden to play back down the line all day, which allowed Lajoie easy bunt hits.[308] Cobb complained about the move, though American League President Ban Johnson said that a recalculation showed that Cobb had won the race anyway and Chalmers ultimately awarded cars to both players.[305][308]
  • 1954 Rules in 1954 required 2.6 at bats per team game, 400 for a 154-game schedule (the rule was changed in 1957 to the current requirement of 3.1 plate appearances per team game), to qualify for the title and hitless at bats could be added to reach this total.[300] Ted Williams posted a .345 average in 1954 over only 386 at bats, and the required hitless at bats drop him below Avila's league-leading .341 average.[218]

References[edit]

General
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