MLB Batting Leaders By Year—1970s
Just like Tony Gwynn in the ‘90's, Rod Carew dominated the batting leader board in the ‘70's. But he wasn't the only hitter to lead the majors in that decade. There were a few other great hitters who came out on top, and a few of the names may surprise you. Here is a complete list of those leaders from the 1970's:
1979-Keith Hernandez, St. Louis Cardinals (.344)
Long before Keith Hernandez became a star in New York with the Mets, he was a star in St. Louis, helping the Cardinals win a World Series in 1982. In 1979, Hernandez shared the MVP Award with Pittsburgh's Willie Stargell, and had what was his greatest season by the numbers. Hernandez led the majors by hitting .344, with 11 homers, 105 RBI, 210 hits, 116 runs, 48 doubles, 11 triples, 11 stolen bases, a .417 on-base average and .513 slugging percentage.
1978-Dave Parker, Pittsburgh Pirates (.334)
For several years, Dave Parker and Willie Stargell were one of the most feared slugging tandems in baseball. In 1978, Parker won the NL MVP Award, when he batted .334, a major league best. Parker also hit 30 home runs, with 117 RBI, 102 runs, 32 doubles, 12 triples, 20 stolen bases, a .394 on-base average and .585 slugging percentage.
1977-Rod Carew, Minnesota Twins (.388)
His name was almost always at the top of AL batters during his career, and in the 1970's, Rod Carew led the majors in batting four times. In 1977, Carew hit .388, which not only led the league, but also was a career best. That season, Carew also won the AL MVP Award -- hitting 14 home runs with 100 runs batted in, 239 hits, 128 runs, 38 doubles, 16 triples, 23 stolen bases, a .449 on-base average and .570 slugging percentage.
1976-Bill Madlock, Pittsburgh Pirates (.339)
Though he hit .354 in 1975, Bill Madlock was outdone by Rod Carew that season. But in 1976, he led the majors with a .339 batting average. That season, Madlock hit 15 homers with 84 runs batted in, 36 doubles, 15 stolen bases, a .412 on-base average and .500 slugging percentage.
1975-Rod Carew, Minnesota Twins (.359)
In 1975, Rod Carew had another great season, leading the majors with a .359 batting average. He also tied a career best with 14 home runs, and had 80 RBI, 24 doubles, 35 stolen bases, and a .421 on-base percentage.
1974-Rod Carew, Minnesota Twins (.364)
In 1974, Rod Carew led the majors in batting for the second of three straight seasons, hitting .364. Carew also hit 3 home runs that year with 55 RBI, 218 hits, 30 doubles, 5 triples, and a .433 on-base average.
1973-Rod Carew, Minnesota Twins (.350)
Rod Carew was a hitting machine of sorts, with a .328 lifetime batting average spanning 19 seasons. In 1973, Carew led the majors in batting for the first time in his career, with a .350 average. He also hit 6 homers with 62 RBI, 203 hits, 30 doubles, 11 triples, 41 stolen bases, and a .411 on-base percentage.
1972-Billy Williams, Chicago Cubs (.333)
Billy Williams was a consistently great hitter, but in 1972 he led the majors with a career high .333 batting average. Williams hit 37 homers that season, with 122 RBI, 191 hits, 95 runs, 34 doubles, 6 triples, a .398 on-base average with a .606 slugging percentage.
1971-Joe Torre, St. Louis Cardinals (.363)
Most people think of Joe Torre as a long-time manager of the New York Yankees, but when Torre played the game, he was one of the best hitters around. In 1971, Torre had a career season, winning the NL MVP Award. He hit a career high .363 to lead the majors, with 24 home runs, 137 RBI, 230 hits, 97 runs, 34 doubles, 8 triples, a .421 on-base average and .555 slugging percentage.
1970-Rico Carty, Atlanta Braves (.366)
Atlanta's Rico Carty had a career season in 1970, leading the majors in batting with a .366 average. He also hit 25 homers, with 101 RBI, 175 hits, 84 runs, 23 doubles, 3 triples, a .454 on-base average and .584 slugging percentage.