During his career, Rose hit 746 doubles, the second most in baseball history behind leader Tris Speaker, who banged out 792 two-base hits in his 22-year career with the Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians, Washington Senators and Philadelphia A’s.
Speaker is the all-time leader with the most seasons with 40 or more doubles (10), the most campaigns with 50-plus two-baggers (five) and most years leading the American League in that offensive category with eight. The left-handed hitting center fielder, who was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1937, hit 20 or more doubles in 20 consecutive seasons (1909-1928) and reached 40 or more in a season with three different teams — Red Sox (1912, 1914), Indians (1916-17, 1920-23, 1926) and Senators (1927).
From 1910-1919, Speaker hit more doubles (367) than any other major league player and during the decade of the 1920s (1920-1929), his 397 two-base hits were tied with Harry Heilmann for second most during that time frame behind Rogers Hornsby’s 405. Speaker set a single-season record for doubles in 1923 with 59 before it was surpassed in 1926 by George Burns (64) and current record-holder Earl Webb (67) in 1931.
Over the last 115 years of Major League Baseball—since 1901 when the American League was formed—there have been 92 occurrences in which a player hit 50 or more doubles in a season, a feat accomplished by 69 players.
Among those 69 big leaguers, 16 of them had multiple 50-double campaigns with Speaker totaling the most with five years of 50-plus two-baggers. The other players with two or more 50-double seasons include Paul Waner (3), Stan Musial (3), Brian Roberts (3), Albert Pujols (3), George Burns (2), Joe Medwick (2), Hank Greenberg (2), Charlie Gehringer (2), Chuck Klein (2), Todd Helton (2), Billy Herman (2), Craig Biggio (2), Nomar Garciaparra (2), Edgar Martinez (2) and Miguel Cabrera (2).
Speaker (Red Sox/Indians), Cabrera (Marlins/Tigers) and Pujols (Cardinals/Angels) are the only players to achieve the feat with different teams while Cabrera and Pujols are the only two batters to do it in both leagues.
Baby Doll Jacobson and Ben Chapman are the only players to hit 50 doubles in a season while splitting the year with different teams. In 1926, Jacobson clubbed 15 doubles for the St. Louis Browns and 36 for the Boston Red Sox for a total of 51. In 1936, Chapman belted 14 for the New York Yankees and 36 for the Washington Senators for a season total of 50.
In 1929, Dodgers outfielder Johnny Frederick became the first and only rookie to hit 50 doubles in a season when he finished the year with 52. This rookie record has been in place for 86 years.
There have been 10 players who had back-to-back 50-double seasons, counting Stan Musial who hit 51 doubles for the Cardinals in 1944, before missing the 1945 season due to his military service during World War II in 1945. and returning in 1946 to lead the N.L. with 50 two-baggers for St. Louis.
The other players with consecutive 50-double seasons include Speaker for the Indians (1920-21), George Burns, Indians (1926-27), Billy Herman, Cubs (1935-36), Joe Medwick, Cardinals (1936-37), Edgar Martinez, Mariners (1995-96), Craig Biggio, Astros (1998-99), Todd Helton, Rockies (2000-01), Albert Pujols, Cardinals (2003-04) and Brian Roberts, Orioles (2008-09).
The Cleveland Indians have the most 50-double seasons by individual players with 11, accomplished by seven different players. Only two other clubs have seven players with a 50-two-base season—the Red Sox and Tigers. The most by a club in the N.L. are five by the Cardinals.
There have been six teams with two players who hit 50 or more doubles in the same season. The 1926 Indians (George Burns/Tris Speaker), 1934 Tigers (Hank Greenberg/Charlie Gehringer), 1936 Tigers (Charlie Gehringer/Gee Walker), 1946 Senators (Mickey Vernon/Stan Spence), 1996 Mariners (Edgar Martinez/Alex Rodriguez) and the 2000 Rockies (Todd Helton/Jeff Cirillo).
Lou Gehrig of the Yankees was the first of nine players to have a season with 50 or more doubles and 40 or more home runs in 1927, while Albert Belle is the only player to club 50 home runs and 50 doubles in the same year when he belted 52 two-base hits and 50 homers for the Indians in 1995. Other players with a 50-double/40-homer season include Greenberg, Tigers (1940), Juan Gonzalez, Rangers (1998), Carlos Delgado, Blue Jays (2000), Klein, Phillies (1930), Helton, Rockies (2000-01), Pujols, Cardinals (2003-04) and Derrek Lee, Cubs (2005).
Since 1901, there are only six active franchises that have not had a player club 50 or more doubles in a season—the New York/San Francisco Giants, Boston/Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves, Chicago White Sox, New York Mets, San Diego Padres and Tampa Bay Rays.
Here is a list of players with 50 or more doubles in a season.