Most Division Series Home Runs for a Career, Single Season

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Last Updated on September 6, 2023 by Matt Musico

MLB is all about having an expanded postseason field these days. But we had to start somewhere before arriving at where we are currently, right? Having Wild Card teams included in October first started in 1995. So, the Division Series era is nearly 30 years old. Our next logical question is obvious: Who has hit the most Division Series home runs?

We break down the Division Series home run leaderboards in two ways below: most career home runs and most single-postseason home runs.

Don’t forget to also check out the rest of our postseason content. Some of it includes the following:

Most Division Series Home Runs in a Career

Manny Ramirez: 12 Home Runs

Manny Ramirez has slugged the most career postseason home runs. Since virtually all of his 19-year MLB career took place during the Division Series era, his being at the top of this list is not at all shocking.

ManRam played in 11 different Division Series overall — nine in the American League and two in the National League. Exactly one-third of his hits in the ALDS (10 out of 30) left the yard. He produced a .227/.333/.515 line across 156 plate appearances. Ramirez added two more NLDS home runs, slashing a much healthier .391/.500/.783 in 28 trips to the plate.

Jose Altuve: 10 Home Runs

Jose Altuve is hot on Ramirez’s tail to be the career postseason home run leader. Based on how frequently the Astros reach the playoffs, he has a decent shot at getting there.

Houston hasn’t just been making the postseason, though. They’ve also been putting together deep runs in October. So, that gives Altuve an opportunity to get a mostly even number of plate appearances across each round. In seven ALDS appearances (134 plate appearances), the second baseman is hitting .280/.366/.576 with those 10 homers, five doubles, 20 RBI, and 30 runs scored. His .942 OPS is the highest of any postseason round through the 2022 campaign.

Derek Jeter: 10 Home Runs

Would any kind of postseason leaderboard be complete without Derek Jeter? Probably not. That’s what happens when you compile enough games played (158) and plate appearances (734) in October to equal a full regular season.

Jeter showed up when the lights were bright during the Fall Classic. But he typically began his postseason with a bang in the Division Series. Across 300 career plate appearances during that round, Jeter slashed .343/.397/.519 with those 10 dingers, 13 doubles, two triples, 28 RBI, and 47 (!) runs scored.

Chipper Jones: 9 Home Runs

Similar to Jeter, reaching the postseason was just about a yearly occurrence for Chipper Jones and the Atlanta Braves. The switch-hitting Hall of Famer appeared in the NLDS 11 different times during his career. While racking up 189 plate appearances, Jones hit .272/.407/.483 with nine home runs, five doubles, 26 RBI, and 30 runs scored.

When looking at his performance between the Division Series, Championship Series, and World Series, Chipper was quite consistent. He never posted a career OPS higher than .891, but he also didn’t finish with one below .828.

Juan Gonzalez: 8 Home Runs

There are four other players who have hit eight career home runs in the Division Series. However, Juan Gonzalez gets special treatment because of the speed at which he reached that number. He needed just 15 games and 62 at-bats to do it. The next-closest person is Carlos Beltran, who slugged eight dingers in 24 games and 83 at-bats.

Juan Gone reached the postseason four times in his career, three times with Texas and once with Cleveland. Unfortunately, his teams never advanced to the next round. He slashed .290/.333/.742 in 66 total plate appearances. Of the 18 hits he recorded, 12 went for extra bases (eight homers, four doubles).

Most Career Division Series Home Runs: The Rest

Here’s what the remainder of the top 16 of this leaderboard looks like:

Most Division Series Home Runs in a Single Postseason

Juan Gonzalez: 5 Home Runs in 1996 ALDS

The 1996 ALDS was Gonzalez’s first taste of postseason baseball, and it’s safe to say he really enjoyed it. Although the Yankees beat the Rangers in four games, the right-handed slugger slashed .438/.526/1.375 with those five homers and nine RBI.

He also faced New York in each of his next two trips to October (1998 and 1999). The Bombers swept Texas both times and held him in check (three hits in 24 plate appearances).

Ken Griffey Jr.: 5 Home Runs in 1995 ALDS

Ken Griffey Jr. and Juan Gonzalez have some similarities here. Not only are they tied atop the Single-Season Division Series Home Run leaderboard, but the 1995 ALDS was also Junior’s first taste of playoff baseball. It just so happened to come against the Yankees, too.

The biggest difference is that Griffey’s Mariners eventually beat the Yankees in five games. His five homers were accompanied by seven RBI and a .391/.444/1.043 line in 27 plate appearances. It’d be the only postseason series win Junior would be a part of during his Hall of Fame career. He’d also hit just one more October home run over his final 52 plate appearances.

Giancarlo Stanton: 4 Home Runs in 2020 ALDS

Giancarlo Stanton has been a solid postseason performer since joining the Yankees in time for the 2018 campaign. But his production in October 2020 stands head and shoulders above the rest. He’s racked up 10 career postseason homers, with six of them coming during this particular period. He hit two in the Wild Card Series before slugging another four in an ALDS matchup against the Tampa Bay Rays.

He hit .316/.381/1.000 in 21 plate appearances while collecting 10 RBI.

Carlos Beltran: 4 Home Runs in 2004 NLDS

The 2004 postseason was Carlos Beltran’s first taste of playoff baseball, and he absolutely went off. His eight home runs that October are still among the most all-time. The Astros didn’t advance past the NLCS, but Beltran made sure to do an equal amount of damage during each round.

It took Houston five games to dispose of Chipper Jones and the Braves in the NLDS. So, that allowed Beltran to rack up 24 plate appearances in the process. All he did with that opportunity was hit .455/.500/1.091. Six of his 10 hits went for extra bases (those four homers and two doubles) while he collected nine RBI and nine runs scored.

Jim Thome: 4 Home Runs in 1999 ALDS

Jim Thome racked up 17 career postseason home runs during his Hall of Fame career. Eight of them came in two different series and in consecutive years: the 1998 ALCS and the 1999 ALDS. He hit four in each matchup.

Cleveland lost to the Boston Red Sox in the ’99 ALDS in five games. Thome collected 21 plate appearances and hit .353/.476/1.059. His four homers were tied for his most in a single series, while his 10 RBI were his most. He’d hit just one more home run and collected two RBI over his final 72 postseason plate appearances after this specific performance.

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