Russell Branyan’s 20th homer yet another solo shot
All-or-nothing slugger Russell Branyan hit his 20th homer Wednesday off Josh Beckett, but it came in a losing cause as the Red Sox topped the Mariners 5-3. It was his 12th solo homer of the year, and he has just 45 RBI. Of course, the Mariners aren’t putting a ton of guys on base for Branyan. But the modest RBI totals are typical for the 34-year-old. In 2009, Branyan had 31 homers and 76 RBI in 431 at-bats for the Mariners. In 2008, he somehow drove in just 20 runs while hitting 12 homers in 132 at-bats for the Brewers. Branyan is one of four players in baseball history to average less than 2.5 RBI per home run over a career of at least 1,000 plate appearances. You might be able to guess two of the others: Russell Branyan - 184 HR, 441 RBI - 2.40 RBI/HR Mark McGwire - 583 HR, 1,414 RBI - 2.43 RBI/HR Adam Dunn - 347 HR, 855 RBI - 2.46 RBI/HR Bill Schroeder - 61 HR, 152 RBI - 2.49 RBI/HR Ken Phelps - 123 HR, 313 RBI - 2.54 RBI/HR Branyan is also the all-time leader in homers for players with fewer than 500 RBI: 1. Russell Branyan - 184 HR, 441 RBI 2. Steve Balboni - 181 HR, 495 RBI 3. Ron Kittle - 176 HR, 460 RBI 4. Nick Swisher - 155 HR, 476 RBI 5. Chris Hoiles - 151 HR, 449 RBI 6. Cory Snyder - 149 HR, 488 RBI 6. Dan Uggla - 149 HR, 440 RBI 8. Bo Jackson - 141 HR, 415 RBI 8. John Jaha - 141 HR, 490 RBI 8. Ty Wigginton - 141 HR, 488 RBI None of that makes Branyan a bad player. But he is unique. Throw strikeouts into the mix, and I’m guessing one could use Baseball-Reference’s play index to create dozens of leaderboards on which he’s an all-time leader.