FanPost

Ike Davis and the 30 by 25 Club

Yesterday's "Can the Mets Trust Ike Davis" editorial by Michael Donato ignited a vigorous discussion that featured the entire range of passionate opinions about the slugging/washed-up/in need of just one more chance first baseman.

Some of the discussion centered around how many guys suddenly find power at age 27 or later. But is that the right question to ask?

After all, in 2012 Ike did something no Met had done in a while, he hit 30+ home runs, 32 to be exact. That effort ended a four season Mets drought dating to 1998 when both Carlos Delgado (38) & David Wright (33) last broke the 30 HR barrier.

Since Ike's proven he had that type of power, perhaps the better question is "What are the odds that it's gone for good?"

Ike hit his 32 HRs at age 25. Since 2000 he's one of 40 players to hit 30 or more HR's before their age 26 season. This list is:

Alex Rodriguez

Mike Trout

Albert Pujols

Giancarlo Stanton

Andruw Jones

Prince Fielder

Troy Glaus

Ryan Braun

Aramis Ramirez

Evan Longoria

Eric Chavez

Hank Blalock

Chris Young

Justin Upton

Miguel Cabrera

Adam Dunn

Mark Texeira

Carlos Gonzalez

Ryan Zimmerman

Hanley Ramirez

Vernon Wells

Jay Bruce

Troy Tulowitzki

David Wright

Adrian Beltre

Mark Reynolds

Pat Burrell

Carlos Quentin

Adam Lind

Paul Goldschmidt

Lance Berkman

Justin Morneau

Grady Sizemore

Josh Reddick

Paul Konerko

Ike Davis

Andrew McCutcheon

Pedro Alvarez

Adrian Gonzalez

Nick Swisher


Pretty nice list. Sure it includes a couple of young guys who we need time to evaluate (Reddick, Goldschmidt, Alvarez) but overall very strong. Except all those guys have not followed the same career arc. There's a big difference between swatting 30 HRs at age 21 than at age 25.

Let's sort them by their age when they had their first 30 HR season.

Player

Age at 1st 30 HR Season

HRs 1st 30 HR Season

Alex Rodriguez

20

36

Mike Trout

20

30




Albert Pujols

21

37

Giancarlo Stanton

21

34

Andruw Jones

21

31







Prince Fielder

23

50

Troy Glaus

23

47

Ryan Braun

23

34

Aramis Ramirez

23

34

Evan Longoria

23

33

Eric Chavez

23

32

Hank Blalock

23

32

Chris Young

23

32

Justin Upton

23

31

Miguel Cabrera

23

31




Adam Dunn

24

46

Mark Teixeira

24

34

Carlos Gonzalez

24

34

Ryan Zimmerman

24

33

Hanley Ramirez

24

33

Vernon Wells

24

33

Jay Bruce

24

32

Troy Tulowitzki

24

32

David Wright

24

30




Adrian Beltre

25

48

Mark Reynolds

25

44

Pat Burrell

25

37

Carlos Quentin

25

36

Adam Lind

25

35

Nick Swisher

25

35

Paul Goldschmidt

25

35

Lance Berkman

25

34

Justin Morneau

25

34

Grady Sizemore

25

33

Josh Reddick

25

32

Paul Konerko

25

32

Ike Davis

25

32

Andrew McCutchen

25

31

Pedro Alvarez

25

30

Adrian Gonzalez

25

30

We see some serious sorting here. It turns out 24 of the 40 had their first 30 HR seasons at a younger age than Ike did. Many are probably not the best comps - they're likely much more talented than Ike. But before we take a closer look at the 25 year olds that are arguably better comps let's note one relative disappointment.

Hank Blalock stands out as a guy that didn't live up to his initial power surge. Blalock only played ‘till he was 29 though he still managed to rack up 153 career home runs. He had a rib removed a couple years before the end of his career but still managed a 25 HR season in his next to last year in the bigs. In all he posted four seasons with 25+ HRs. As far as disappointments go you could do a lot worse. His 153 career HRs is still more than all but five players have managed to hit while wearing a Mets uniform.

Now we'll look at the entire list along with career home runs.

Player

Age at 1st 30 HR Seaon

HRs 1st 30 HR Season

HR's through Age 25

Current Age

Career HRs

Alex Rodriguez

20

36

93

38

649

Mike Trout

20

30

56

22

56







Albert Pujols

21

37

201

33

492

Giancarlo Stanton

21

34

109

23

109

Andruw Jones

21

31

105

36

434













Prince Fielder

23

50

160

29

280

Troy Glaus

23

47

118

37

320

Ryan Braun

23

34

103

29

211

Aramis Ramirez

23

34

85

35

349

Evan Longoria

23

33

113

27

155

Eric Chavez

23

32

121

35

257

Hank Blalock

23

32

105

32

153

Chris Young

23

32

71

29

143

Justin Upton

23

31

129

25

131

Miguel Cabrera

23

31

175

30

361







Adam Dunn

24

46

158

33

434

Mark Teixeira

24

34

107

33

341

Carlos Gonzalez

24

34

77

27

125

Ryan Zimmerman

24

33

116

28

167

Hanley Ramirez

24

33

103

29

170

Vernon Wells

24

33

80

34

270

Jay Bruce

24

32

134

26

158

Troy Tulowitzki

24

32

92

28

152

David Wright

24

30

130

30

220







Adrian Beltre

25

48

125

34

372

Mark Reynolds

25

44

89

30

197

Pat Burrell

25

37

82

36

292

Carlos Quentin

25

36

50

30

150

Adam Lind

25

35

57

30

133

Nick Swisher

25

35

58

32

224

Paul Goldschmidt

25

35

59

25

59

Lance Berkman

25

34

55

37

366

Justin Morneau

25

34

79

32

219

Grady Sizemore

25

33

111

31

139

Josh Reddick

25

32

42

26

52

Paul Konerko

25

32

53

37

431

Ike Davis

25

32

58

26

66

Andrew McCutchen

25

31

82

26

99

Pedro Alvarez

25

30

50

26

81

Adrian Gonzalez

25

30

61

31

229

There are an awful lot of career 150+ HR guys on that list and eleven that have broken the 300 career HR list! Not surprisingly many of the "early starters" have had breathtakingly good careers.

Even the guys that didn't crack the 30 HR barrier until they were 25 have a pretty good look to them. The weakest links are Adam Lind who only has 133 HR's as a 30-year old and Grady Sizemore has seen injuries derail his early pace. Of course, the jury is still out on the "newbies" like Goldschmidt, Reddick, Ike and Alvarez but is there anyone else's power on that list that we couldn't live with at first base?

While there may or may not be a bunch of guys that develop power late (that's not the point of this particular exercise) - it certainly looks like guys that flash 30 HR power at age 25 or younger are extremely good bets to continue to produce power.

There have only been 6 players to hit 130+ HRs in a Mets uniform ever. Eleven of the sixteen guys on the 25 year old list have already passed that mark for their careers (though not all in a single uniform) and it's not a stretch to think every one of those guys could reach that benchmark.

Of course, there's no guarantee Ike will regain his power stroke. But if he doesn't, he will be virtually the single exception that proves the rule that healthy guys that flash early 30 HR power are virtual locks to knock at least 150 dingers in their career. Those odds are awfully tempting to roll the dice on, especially at less than five million dollars for one more toss.


This FanPost was contributed by a member of the community and was not subject to any vetting or approval process. It does not necessarily reflect the opinions, reasoning skills, or attention to grammar and usage rules held by the editors of this site.

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