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Dodger Dingers
2004-08-31 12:39
by Mike Carminati

Adrian Beltre currently leads the majors in home runs with 42, two ahead of Albert Pujols and Adam Dunn. Curiously, there are no American Leaguers in the top six (Carlos Beltran, who spent times in both leagues, is seventh with 35 and Bostonís Manny Ramirez is eighth with 34).

Beltreís season totals project to 52. If so, it would more than double his previous high of 23 last year. Even though Beltre had played about five and one-half years prior to 2004, he could increase his career homer totals by more than fifty percent: he had 99 at the start of the season and projects to 151.

Whatís even more remarkable is that Beltre has been shackled with Dodger Stadium as his home park. Although it has seemed to hurt him one bit. He has 21 homers on the road and 21 homers at home, in 24 fewer at-bats.

If Beltre breaks 50, he will be the first Dodger to ever do so. Shawn Green holds the franchise record with 49 in 2001. Beltre is already tied for fourth on the Dodgersí list with a month to go. Here are all the Dodgers who have hit at least 40 in a season:

NameYrHR
Shawn Green200149
Duke Snider195643
Gary Sheffield200043
Duke Snider195342
Duke Snider195542
Gil Hodges195442
Shawn Green200242
Adrian Beltre200442
Roy Campanella195341
Duke Snider195440
Duke Snider195740
Gil Hodges195140
Mike Piazza199740

Even if Beltre does not break Greenís team record, he may do something that no Dodger has done in 96 years, lead the majors in home runs. The last and only Dodger to do so was Tim Jordan in 1906 and 1908, with 12 home runs both years. Actually, in 1906 Jordan tied with the Philly Aís Harry Davis for 12 to lead the majors, so the only year in the major-league history that a Dodger was the sole home run leader was in 1906. But Beltre is doing it this year.

As a matter of fact, no Dodger has even led the NL in home runs since the franchise headed west and broke the hearts of Brooklynites everywhere. Here are the Dodgers who led the NL in homers:

YrNameHR
1890Oyster Burns13*
1903Jimmy Sheckard9
1904Harry Lumley9
1906Tim Jordan12
1908Tim Jordan12
1924Jack Fournier27
1941Dolph Camilli34
1956Duke Snider43

(*=tied for league lead)

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