The 7 Best Facts to Know About 1B Don Mattingly

On July 17, 1987 Don Mattingly became the first player to hit a home run in his seventh consecutive game in AL history en route to tying the all-time MLB record with 8 consecutive games the next day, making it a great time to look back at all of the remarkable facts and historic achievements he has to his name.

Don Mattingly was drafted in the 19th round of the 1979 MLB draft by the New York Yankees straight out of high school. The late-round draft pick made his MLB debut only three years later in 1982 tallying two hits in seven games played. After playing close to 100 games the following season, Mattingly broke through in his first full season in 1984 leading the league in Hits, Doubles, and Batting Average while finishing fifth in AL MVP voting en route to his first All-Star appearance.

The Indiana native did not slow down following his breakout season. In 1985, “Donnie Baseball” led the MLB in Doubles, RBIs, and Total Bases while still sporting a .324 batting average. That year Mattingly was awarded a Gold Glove, Silver Slugger, and AL MVP, marking one of the best single seasons in Yankees history. “The Hit Man” is often referred to as the greatest Yankee to never win a World Series title, as his six consecutive All-Star seasons were on par with some of the greatest runs by a Yankees player ever without a ring to show for it.

The nine-time Gold Glover finished his playing career with a .996 fielding percentage, meaning for every 1,000 balls hit Mattingly’s way, he only made four errors. He recorded one of the best defensive careers by an infielder ever, all while holding a .307 lifetime batting average. #23 retired in 1995, but “Donnie Baseball” could not give up the game. He served as the Yankees hitting coach from 2004-2007, Dodgers hitting coach/Manager from 2008-2015, and in 2016 the Miami Marlins hired Mattingly as their Manager following a mutual parting with LA. 

Here are some of the greatest records to know about Don Mattingly:
Don Mattingly yankees records stats baseball reference
Via Baseball Reference

The 19th-round draft pick played 14 MLB seasons and made 6 consecutive All-Star appearances during the 1980s

Career All-Stars:

  • 6x All-Star

The Yankees’ lifer put together some phenomenal seasons with the franchise, but his 1985 season is unforgettable

Don Mattingly’s MVP recognition:

  • 1985 American League MVP
  • 1986 American League MVP runner-up
  • 1984 American League MVP 5th place
  • 1987 American League MVP 7th place
  • 1989 American League MVP 15th place
  • 1994 American League MVP 18th place
  • 1993 American League MVP 19th place

Don Mattingly’s 9 Gold Gloves are impressive for any position, but especially at 1st Base

Career defensive accolades:

  • 9x Gold Glove
  • Most Gold Gloves by an American League 1st Baseman
  • 2nd most Gold Gloves by a MLB 1st Baseman

The Indiana native wasn’t just a great fielder as he also held a .307 lifetime batting average

Don Mattingly’s hitting accolades:

  • 3x Silver Slugger

One of baseball’s greatest defensive talents was no stranger to leading the league in various offensive categories

Don Mattingly’s single-season leader:

  • 2x AL Hits leader 
  • 2x AL TB leader
  • 1984 AL Batting Title (.343)
  • 1985 AL RBI (145) leader
  • 1986 MLB SLG (.573) leader
  • 1986 MLB OPS (.967) leader

Don Mattingly’s #23 is the only number retired by the Yankees that did not win a World Series with the franchise

New York Yankees accolades:

  • #23 retired by Yankees

No pitcher wanted to face Don Mattingly when the bases were loaded 

Most Grand Slams during 1 season in MLB history:

T1. 1987 Don Mattingly (6)

T1. 2006 Travis Hafner (6)

T3. 1955 Ernie Banks (5)

T3. 1961 Jim Gentile (5)

T3. 2006 Richie Sexson (5)

T3. 2009 Albert Pujols (5)



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.