So—Albert Pujols is still on track for the worst season of his career, but he's now on pace to lead the National League in home runs for the third year in a row. His 30th, which was not quite enough to push this snakebitten Cardinals squad over that snakebitten Pirates squad, meant he'd reached that psychological mark for the 11th consecutive season. Al Hrabosky noted, multiple times, that nobody had ever done that to start his career before; here's a list of all the players who've done it, period.
Alex Rodriguez has done it 13 times in a row, which is every full season of his career but one. The streak looks likely to end in 2011, as Rodriguez, injured much of the year, has just 13 home runs in 80 games. Rodriguez led the American League in home runs five times in that span, topping out at 57 in 2002, when he was also a gold-glove shortstop who played every single game that year. Someday we'll realize just how good he was, at his best.
Barry Bonds is the prime reason we have trouble remembering how good A-Rod was at his best. He also did it 13 times, between 1992 and 2004. Like Rodriguez, Bonds stranded his first 30-home-run season, 1990, by hitting 25 in 1991.
Jimmie Foxx hit 33 home runs when he was 21 years old and 36 when he was 32, and after that his career was just about over. All he'd done in the meantime was slug .644.
Two other players have hit 30 home runs 10 seasons in a row. One you'd probably get eventually—Sammy Sosa, between 1995 and 2004—and the other might take you a while. Answer after the jump, if you'd like to guess.
You guessed it:
Frank Stallone Carlos Delgado, who hit 30 home runs from 1997 to 2004 with the Blue Jays, in 2005 with the Marlins, and in 2006 with the Mets. Delgado's late start and lack of defensive value—not to mention the way his career ended due to injuries rather than ineffectiveness—mean he's really a Hall of Very Good guy, but at his best he was one of the league's most dangerous hitters.