Mike Trout is coming.
Not like Trout will maybe one day crack a list like this, like he has a very real chance to eventually be in the top three on this list. Through parts of 11 seasons, Trout has slashed .305/.419/.583 with 310 home runs, 816 RBIs, a 1.002 OPS and a 75.9 offensive WAR. Despite being just 30 years old, Trout is already a three-time MVP and a pretty sure bet to one day be elected to Cooperstown.
Still, simply having a Hall of Fame resume wasn't enough to crack this list. Joe DiMaggio, Ricky Henderson, Frank Thomas, Nap Lajoie, Edgar Martinez and Craig Biggio were among the Hall of Famers that fell short of cracking this exclusive list. So, for now, so does Trout, even though he's probably only a year or two away from forcing his way onto the list, which will likely just be him scratching the surface.
Below are the 10 greatest right-handed hitters in MLB history, as determined by Audacy Sports:
10. Honus Wagner - Louisville Colonels, Pittsburgh Pirates (1897-1917)
Best Season: 1908 - .354/.415/.542 with 10 home runs, 109 RBIs, 54 walks, .957 OPS and an 11.4 offensive WAR
Career Summary: .328/.391/.467 with 101 home runs, 1,732 RBIs, 3,420 hits, 963 walks, an .858 OPS, a 151 OPS+ and a 123.2 offensive WAR
Wagner is most famous for being the face of the most iconic baseball card ever, but putting him in that box does a disservice to his legacy. While his contact numbers stand out the most, Wagner hit 101 career home runs in an era where that was a ton. It leads you to think that if he had played 20 years later, he could have hit a significant amount of home runs, as the sport changed and the long-ball became more prevalent. It's perhaps difficult to compare him to someone that hit 500 or 600 home runs, but a dumbed-down way of thinking of him is that offensively he was essentially a better version of Hall of Famer Derek Jeter, which is meant as a significant compliment.
9. Mike Schmidt - Philadelphia Phillies (1972-1989)
Best Season: 1980 - .286/.380/.624 with 48 home runs, 121 RBIs, 89 walks, a 1.004 OPS and a 7.6 offensive WAR
Career Summary: .267/.380/.527 with 548 home runs, 1,595 RBIs, 2,234 hits, 1,507 walks, a .908 OPS, a 148 OPS+ and a 91.8 offensive WAR
Not only is Schmidt the greatest player in Phillies' history, but he is considered by most to be the greatest third baseman that the sport has ever seen. The only player on this list to spend his entire career with one organization, Schmidt hit 35 or more home runs in a season 11 times during his 18-year career. A three-time National League MVP, Schmidt is 16th in MLB history with 548 home runs and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1995.
8. Miguel Cabrera - Florida Marlins, Detroit Tigers (2003-Present)
Best Season: 2013 - .348/.442/.636 with 44 home runs, 137 RBIs, 90 walks, a 1.078 OPS and a 9.1 offensive WAR
Career Summary: .311/.388/.534 with 500 home runs, 1,785 RBIs, 2,955 hits, 1,192 walks, a .922 OPS, a 145 OPS+ and a 79.1 offensive WAR (stats current as of August 2021)
Though his career projects to end with some lean seasons, peak-Cabrera was one of the most dominant offensive forces that the game has ever seen. Cabrera edged out Mike Trout to win back-to-back American League MVPs in 2012 and 2013. In 2013, Cabrera became the first player to win baseball's Triple Crown since Carl Yastrzemski in 1967. When his career ends, there's a spot waiting in Cooperstown for Cabrera, who should receive 100 percent of the vote in his first year of Hall of Fame eligibility.
7. Frank Robinson - Cincinnati Reds, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, California Angels and Cleveland Indians (1956-1976)
Best Season: 1962 - .342/.421/.624 with 39 home runs, 136 RBIs, 76 walks, a 1.045 OPS and an 8.4 offensive WAR
Career Summary: .294/.389/.537 with 586 home runs, 1,812 RBIs, 2,943 hits, 1,420 walks, a .926 OPS, a 154 OPS+ and a 106.9 offensive WAR
It's not hyperbole to say that Robinson was one of the most important figures in MLB history. He was a trailblazer in the sport in the sense that he was one of the first African-American superstar players and ended up being the first Black manager in the history of the league. Independent of the tremendous impact he had on the fight for racial equality, Robinson was simply one of the most dominant players that's ever picked up a bat. He's the only player in the history of the league to win both an American League and National League MVP Award. He was a 14-time All-Star. He's 10th in league history with 586 home runs. He won a batting title. He won the Triple Crown in 1966. It's hard to think of anything that Robinson didn't accomplish on a baseball field.
6. Jimmie Foxx - Philadelphia Athletics, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies (1925-1945)
Best Season: 1932 - .364/.469/.749 with 58 home runs, 169 RBIs, 116 walks, a 1.218 OPS and an 10.1 offensive WAR
Career Summary: .325/.428/.609 with 534 home runs, 1,922 RBIs, 2,646 hits, 1,452 walks, a 1.038 OPS, a 163 OPS+ and a 91.6 offensive WAR
Foxx was a superstar for Connie Mack's 1929 World Series Champion Philadelphia Athletics, who won 104 regular season games and ultimately the World Series title. Foxx, who debuted for the A's when he was just 17 years old, spent 11 seasons with the club, winning a batting title and two American League MVPs. He also had an extremely successful five-and-a-half season stint with the Boston Red Sox, winning the American League MVP in 1938 and making the All-Star team every season he played for the organization. As you can seen from his staggeringly impressive offensive stats above, he was one of the most complete hitters in baseball history.