Randy Arozarena made some history during the Rays final regular season game of the season on Sunday. Entering the game, Arozarena possessed 20 homeruns and 19 stolen bases, so the moment he had the opportunity to snag that 20th bag, he took it.
Thus, Arozarena became just the 11th rookie in Major League history to have at least 20 homeruns and 20 stolen bases in their rookie season. The last time this was last accomplished was by Andrew Benintendi while he was with the Boston Red Sox in 2017.
With his 20th stolen base in the bag, Arozarena completed the 2021 regular season with a slash line of .274/.356/.459 with 20 homeruns giving him a 128 wRC+ and 3.3 fWAR.
There have been several notable players throughout history to have achieved 20/20 rookie seasons along with Arozarena, such as Mike Trout, Carlos Beltran, and Nomar Garciaparra.
Among the 10 other players to have accomplished a 20/20 campaign in their rookie season, five of them went on to win the Rookie of the Year award for their respective leagues, while the remaining five garnered serious attention for the coveted award, with the exception of Ellis Burks who did not receive a single vote for the award during his 1987 rookie year (thanks to Mark McGwire’s incredible year).
Regarding the Tampa Bay Rays, it was the 5th time in franchise history a player finished the year with at least 20 homeruns and 20 stolen bases. B.J. Upton accomplished the feat three times during his tenure with the team (2007, 2011, and 2012), while Tommy Pham did so during his lone full season with the team in 2019.
Arozarena finished the 2021 season leading the American League rookies in fWAR (3.3), and ranked 5th in batting average (.274), 2nd in on-base percentage (.356), 6th in slugging percentage (.459), 5th in homeruns (20), and 1st in stolen bases (20) among his peers. His main competition for the Rookie of the Year award will be Rays SS Wander Franco, who totaled 2.5 fWAR in half the number of games (70) as Arozarena (141), as well as Rays SP Shane McClanahan (3.43 ERA, 2.5 fWAR) and Houston SP Luis Garcia (3.30 ERA, 3.1 fWAR).