Last Updated on November 1, 2023 by Matt Musico
The A’s have been around for a long time. They’ve also played in a lot of different places (which will soon expand to Las Vegas). With all of this opportunity, the franchise has produced plenty of 100 RBI seasons. There have been 83 different 100 RBI campaigns in franchise history heading into 2024. But which players are among the single-season Athletics RBI leaders?
We’ll take a look at the top 10 such performances before checking out the remainder of the top 26.
Single-Season Athletics RBI Leaders: Top 10
Jimmie Foxx enjoyed a 20-year Hall of Fame career, and my goodness did he put together some monster seasons. As we can see below, he produced consecutive 160-plus RBI campaigns. Foxx won the MVP Award on both of those occasions. However, neither of those performances was his single-season career-high mark. That’d be 175 RBI, which he accomplished in 1938 with the Boston Red Sox.
The right-handed slugger owns four of the top-10 RBI seasons in A’s history. Here they are:
- 169 RBI in 1932
- 163 RBI in 1933
- 156 RBI in 1930
- 130 RBI in 1934
His 1932 campaign also included 58 home runs, which is still a single-season franchise record. What really put him on the track for 169 RBI, though, was a three-month span between May and July. By the end of April, Foxx had 13 RBI in 14 games played. He followed that up with three straight months of at least 35 RBI.
There were three distinct situations where Foxx shined. He accumulated 137 RBI against right-handed pitchers. He also racked up 94 RBI at home, as well as 93 RBI in the first half alone.
Al Simmons held the A’s single-season RBI record before Foxx came along. He still has three of the top-10 performances in franchise history. They came in a four-year span, too:
- 165 RBI in 1930
- 157 RBI in 1929
- 151 RBI in 1932
Interestingly enough, his 157 RBI in 1929 led the league, while his 165 rib-eye steaks the following year didn’t. Simmons’ 1930 RBI production was quite even between the first half (87) and the second half (77). But like Foxx, he also enjoyed hitting at home, which is where 101 of his season-long RBI total came from.
Simmons posted an OPS greater than 1.000 in five of six months during the regular season. The one time he didn’t? That’d be September when it settled in at .999. What a slacker.
Jason Giambi: 137 RBI in 2000
During his 2000 AL MVP performance, Jason Giambi slugged 43 homers with 137 RBI. It was the first time he hit 40-plus homers with 120-plus RBI. He’d do it two more times in his MLB career — once for the A’s and once for the Yankees.
As in most cases, Giambi was humming at the plate in Oakland victories. When the A’s came out on top, the first baseman hit .353/.524/.734 with 29 homers and 100 RBI. While only 14 homers and 37 RBI came in losses, his triple slash was still a healthy .308/.404/.536.
The left-handed slugger was a beast with runners in scoring position during this campaign. He hit 13 homers with 58 RBI while posting a .356/.515/.746 line. That sussed out to a 1.260 OPS, which was nearly identical to his OPS with runners on any base (1.261).
Miguel Tejada: 131 RBI in 2002
Similar to Giambi, Miguel Tejada won the AL MVP Award for his efforts in 2002. He posted six 100 RBI seasons in his career, and only one performance finished better than what he did here with Oakland (150 RBI with Baltimore in 2004). The shortstop also collected 34 homers, 30 doubles, 108 runs scored, and 204 total hits en route to bringing home the hardware in ’02.
Tejada’s road OPS (.910) was nearly 100 points higher than his home OPS (.813), but his power numbers were similar (17 homers and 64 RBI at home, 17 homers and 67 RBI on the road). For whatever reason, the third inning was Tejada’s favorite when it came to stepping up to the plate. He slashed .304/.356/.658 with eight homers and 27 RBI in 87 plate appearances during that frame.
Home Run Baker: 130 RBI in 1912
Before all these other dudes crested over the 130 RBI plateau, Home Run Baker did it first. He surpassed the century mark three times during his 12-year career. It happened in consecutive seasons, too — 115 in 1911, 130 in 1912, and 117 in 1913. Baker led the league in this category in ’12 and ’13 and led the league in homers all three years (11, 10, and 12).
Baker also got hot in the RBI department following a slow-ish start. By the start of June, he had 24 RBI to his name. He only had fewer than 24 RBI in a single month once the rest of the season (22 in August). The third baseman racked up 70 RBI at Shribe Park but also had double-digit RBI in three other stadiums. Those include Navin Field (Detroit, 12), Griffith Stadium (Washington, 11), and Hilltop Park (10).
Single-Season Athletics RBI Leaders: The Rest
Here is the remainder of the top-26 RBI seasons in Athletics history:
- Al Simmons, 1925: 129
- Al Simmons, 1931: 128
- Nap Lajoie, 1901: 125
- Gus Zernial, 1951: 125
- Jose Canseco, 1988: 124
- Jason Giambi, 1999: 123
- Khris Davis, 2018: 123
- Jose Canseco, 1991: 122
- Bob Johnson, 1936: 121
- Jimmie Foxx, 1931: 120
- Hank Majeski, 1948: 120
- Jason Giambi, 2001: 120
- Jimmie Foxx, 1929: 118
- Reggie Jackson, 1969: 118
- Dave Kingman, 1984: 118
- Mark McGwire, 1987: 118
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