I love baseball slash lines. There is so much info in the three numbers lined back-to-back-to-back. Of course, I'm talking about batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage. OBP and SLG matter much more to me than BA, but all three are helpful in evaluating a player's performance.
In basketball, shooting percentages present a similar value to the observer. Yes, rebounds and assists are important (just like baserunning and defense are important in baseball), but a good basketball player needs to shoot the ball effectively. There is a group of NBA players named the "50-40-90" club. That is, players that shoot above 50% from the field, 40% from three, and 90% from the free throw line in one season. I'm not sure why the free throw percentage is so high—to me 80% would do—but nevertheless, it's a fun stat. Only seven players in history have registered a 50-40-90 season: Steve Nash (four times), Larry Bird (twice), Mark Price, Reggie Miller, Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Durant, and Steph Curry.
I offer to you the baseball equivalent, the .300/.450/.600 club. That is, a batting average of over .300, on-base percentage over .450, and slugging percentage over .600. Mike Trout is the only player with that line in 2017 at .341/.468/.690. Joey Votto is very close: .317/.447/.603. Using the Play Index from Baseball-Reference, I can see how many players have had seasons fitting these three criteria.
There are 36 players in the .300/.450/.600 club (Trout would be number 37). These 36 have combined to do it 90 times. Here is a list of players that did it more than twice:
- Babe Ruth (11)
- Ted Williams (10)
- Barry Bonds (7)
- Lou Gehrig (7)
- Rogers Hornsby (7)
- Jimmie Foxx (5)
- Frank Thomas (4)
- Mickey Mantle (3)
- Todd Helton (3)
Babe Ruth and Ted Williams were very good, if you didn't already know that. The two best hitters to ever play, in my opinion. Bonds is probably third (his 2004 OPS of 1.422 is the best ever, by the way). One player I was surprised to see on the list only once was Albert Pujols (2008); that was the only year his OBP crept over .450. Bryce Harper's 2015 (.330/.460/.649) was the first entrant into the club since Pujols. Other members of the club from my lifetime: Manny Ramirez (2000, 2002), Jason Giambi (2000, 2001), Carlos Delgado (2000), Larry Walker (1997, 1999), Mark McGwire (1996), Gary Sheffield (1996), Jim Thome (1996), Edgar Martinez (1995), Paul O'Neill (1994), and Jeff Bagwell (1994).
Has any player ever hit .300/.450/.600 for his entire career? Yes, two in fact. Babe Ruth (.342/.474/.690) and Ted Williams (.344/.482/.634) Like I said, they were quite good.
.300/.450/.600 members by decade