20-20 Club: A Look at the Potential Class of 2016

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

20 Homeruns! 20 Stolen bases! Such an exclusive achievement for baseball players to accomplish. Fantasy owners look at these players in a different light because of their ability to accumulate both of these very important stats in one season. Unfortunately, hitting 20 homeruns and stealing 20 bases is becoming a lost art. Here is a look at the total number of players to obtain this feat of the past several seasons:

12 guys in 2011
10 guys in 2012
9 guys in 2013
5 guys in 2014
4 Guys in 2015

Here are the 4 guys to go 20-20 last season: Manny Machado, Paul Goldschmidt, Ryan Braun, & A.J. Pollock. Machado hasn't successfully stolen a base all season and Pollock hasn't even stepped on the field this year. Goldschmidt and Braun are just off pace to repeat their performances, but need to improve slightly to get it done.

Players on pace for a 20-20 season (stats are through June 23rd):

Player, Team Pos R HR RBI SB AVG Remaining Games HR Pace SB Pace
Jose Altuve, Hou 2B 51 12 41 18 0.343 89 27 40
Ian Desmond, Tex OF 52 12 47 13 0.316 89 27 29
Mookie Betts, Bos OF 64 15 51 11 0.290 90 34 25
Mike Trout, LAA OF 48 14 48 10 0.300 89 31 22
Wil Myers, SD OF 47 16 45 10 0.284 88 35 22
Gregory Polanco, Pit OF 47 10 44 9 0.298 89 22 20
Leonys Martin, Sea OF 25 11 26 9 0.254 89 24 20
Xander Bogaerts, Bos SS 56 9 50 10 0.351 90 20 23
Eduardo Nunez, Min SS 34 9 26 17 0.316 90 20 38
Melvin Upton Jr., SD OF 34 9 32 16 0.257 88 20 35

There are currently 10 players on pace for a 20-20 season. However, only 5 of them currently have double digits in each category.

Jose Altuve was on pace for a 50-50 season through 29 games! Although that pace was ridiculous, not many people doubt his chances at his first 20-20 season. His last 44 games, however, have resulted in only 3 HR. This leaves fantasy owners wondering which Altuve they will see the rest of this season. His career high is 15 HR but another power surge, like the one earlier this season, and Altuve could come close doubling that.

Ian Desmond, who lost his streak of 3 straight 20-20 seasons last year, is on pace to start a new streak this season. What stands out most for Desmond is the .316 batting average. A .267 career hitter (.244 over the past 2 years), Desmond is putting up the best season of his career.

Mookie Betts, Mike Trout, & Wil Myers round out the list of players who currently have double digits in both steals and homeruns. Myers is the name that stands out the most. He already doubled his best steal total and has been one of the few bright spots in a terrible season for his team, the Padres. It seems Mike Trout can put up whatever numbers he feels like. Although, he is no longer stealing 30+ bases a year, he remains the consensus #1 overall hitter in fantasy. Betts burst onto the scene last year coming up 2 homeruns short of going 20-20. He looks to fly over that hurdle this season and is easily on pace for MVP caliber numbers across the board.

Xander Bogaerts, Gregory Polanco, Melvin Upton Jr., Eduardo Nunez, & Leonys Martin are the remaining five players who are currently on pace to capture 20-20 seasons. Although only 1 or 2, if any, will ultimately get there, what they have done so far this year is the reason 20-20 is a possibility. Bogaerts is improving leaps and bounds every season and is on his way to shattering career highs across the board. The power for him this season has been a welcoming surprise for his owners. Initially thought of as a speedster, Polanco has already surpassed his career high in homeruns. Upton Jr. already has 3 seasons of 20-20 under his belt. He looks to make it 4 (and his first since his 28-31 campaign in 2012) in what has been a resurgence for him. Nunez & Martin have enjoyed seasons no one could have predicted. Martin has been especially surprising, namely because he is on pace for 20-20 despite playing only 56 games this season. If he remains healthy, he could be in for a big second half.

Players just off pace for a 20-20 season (stats are through June 23rd):

Player, Team Pos R HR RBI SB AVG Remaining Games HR Pace SB Pace
Paul Goldschmidt, Ari 1B 42 14 46 9 0.296 87 30 19
Bryce Harper, Wsh OF 42 15 43 8 0.252 89 33 18
Carlos Correa, Hou SS 33 11 40 8 0.262 89 24 18
Francisco Lindor, Cle SS 45 8 37 12 0.307 91 18 27

Paul Goldschmidt, looking for his 2nd straight 20-20 season, falls just short of being on pace. In what has been a disappointing season for a Diamondbacks team that had playoff aspirations, Goldschmidt's year has been exactly what his career numbers would suggest.

Bryce Harper who was pacing for 64-36 through April, has cooled tremendously since. His May & June combine for only 6 HR and 3 SB with a .235 AVG. Despite on pace for 18 SB (his career high), If he wants to break the 20-20 threshold, Harper will need production closer to his April than the one fantasy owners have seen the past two months.

Carlos Correa & Francisco Lindor have had similar careers up to this point. Both former 1st round draft picks who each played 99 games last year. They both impressed last year and are doing so again this season. Correa, who has been unfairly labelled as a disappointment (for those who felt he could double his 2015 output), has a 162 game AVG of 32-21. He is currently pacing well below that mark, but a hot streak could turn things around. Lindor, whose 162 game AVG is 19-23, has shown a lot more power than initially projected. Although 15-30 seems more likely, Lindor is certainly capable of putting up 20 homeruns this season.

Players needing more power for a 20-20 season (stats are through June 23rd):

Player, Team Pos R HR RBI SB AVG Remaining Games HR Pace SB Pace
Jonathan Villar, Mil SS 37 6 29 25 0.292 90 14 56
Rajai Davis, Cle OF 35 7 27 21 0.264 91 16 48
Starling Marte, Pit OF 36 6 27 20 0.328 89 13 44
Odubel Herrera, Phi OF 39 7 25 11 0.301 88 15 24

Jonathan Villar, Rajai Davis, & Starling Marte are all likely to fall well below the 20 HR mark but bare mentioning for a few reasons. 1) They have each stolen 20(or more) bases so far this season. 2) They have also put up solid power numbers, showing they are more than just strict speedsters. Marte, if he is able to overcome his health issues, could be the most likely 20-20 candidate out of this group. He came 1 HR short of 20-20 last year.

Odubel Herrera, believe it or not, was the inspiration for this piece. I don't see enough power for him to hit 20 HR, at least not this season. But his name deserves a mention because he is vastly underrated on a struggling Phillies team.

Players needing more speed for a 20-20 season (stats are through June 23rd):

Player, Team Pos R HR RBI SB AVG Remaining Games HR Pace SB Pace
Ian Kinsler, Det 2B 58 14 46 7 0.298 89 31 16
Ryan Braun, Mil OF 30 12 38 6 0.320 90 27 14
Charlie Blackmon, Col OF 41 10 36 6 0.299 90 23 14
George Springer, Hou OF 49 15 41 6 0.260 89 33 13
Rougned Odor, Tex 2B 46 13 34 6 0.271 89 29 13

Ian Kinsler & Ryan Braun both look to get back to familiar ground by going 20-20. Kinsler, who has 3 seasons of 20-20, last achieved the feat in 2011. He has been an all around contributor this season for the Tigers and has a real shot at 20-20 if he steals a few more bases the remainder of the year. Braun, a 4 time 20-20 guy, looks for his 2nd straight season of accomplishing it. Currently on pace for just 14 SB puts him in this group of 20-20 hopefuls.

Charlie Blackmon, George Springer, & Rougned Odor are all looking for their first 20-20 seasons. Blackmon has plenty of speed to accomplish it, the question that remains for him is health. Springer, who went 16-16 in just 102 games last season, has all the tools to be a yearly 20-20 player. Health remains his biggest obstacle, but he is also running less and at a much worse success rate. Odor has improved statistically with every season he gets under his belt. At only 22, he has started to show 20+ HR potential. The stolen base total and success rate have also increased and this could lead to 20 SB potential a few seasons from now.

Final Prediction for the 2016 20-20 Club:

Jose Altuve
Ian Desmond
Mookie Betts
Mike Trout
Wil Myers
Paul Goldschmidt
Ian Kinsler

Please leave comments if you have any further questions and feel free to let me know what you found most interesting in this research. Thanks for the read!