New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge broke a three-decade-old major league rookie record Monday afternoon with his 50th home run of the season. He eclipsed Mark McGwire's legendary 1987 season for the Oakland Athletics, in which he hit 49.
Judge's 2017 season (.283 average with 50 home runs, 108 RBIs and an OPS of 1.038) ranks as one of the best rookie seasons in major league history among hitters. But is it the best?
There are a handful of other seasons in the storied history of baseball that are up there with Judge's. Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout's 2012 campaign was the best in recent memory. In 2001, Ichiro Suzuki, hit .350 with 242 hits for the Seattle Mariners and won the MVP in his rookie season after playing nine years in Japan's majors. In that same season, St. Louis Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols had an incredible debut with a .329 average and 37 home runs with 130 RBIs.
In 1975, Freddie Lynn helped lead the Red Sox to the World Series with a stellar rookie season, and few had a better rookie campaign than Dick Allen in 1964 for the Philadelphia Phillies (he had a WAR of 8.8). Rounding out the top rookie campaigns? Ted Williams in 1939 showed his greatness immediately. And don't forget the great Shoeless Joe Jackson, who hit .408 in 1911, his first season.
Flip the photos for each of these nine all-time great hitters' rookie year stat lines and cast a vote for who you think should be ranked higher (Note: Current rankings reflect overall vote totals).
-- John Silver