Phillies: Maikel Franco, Cesar Hernandez AL stat co-leaders

Maikel Franco #7 and Cesar Hernandez #16 of the Philadelphia Phillies in July 2019 (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
Maikel Franco #7 and Cesar Hernandez #16 of the Philadelphia Phillies in July 2019 (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images) /

Former Phillies infielders Maikel Franco and Cesar Hernandez have the most doubles in the American League

While donning red pinstripes, former Philadelphia Phillies infielders Maikel Franco and Cesar Hernandez only logged as much as 29 and 31 doubles, respectively, during a normal, full 162-game season.

Now, in the first season with their new teams, both already have 15 doubles — amid the shortened 60-game 2020 season with still more than two weeks left to play.

Coincidentally, both Franco and Hernandez, now of the Kansas City Royals and Cleveland Indians, are the American League co-leaders in the category.

MLB Doubles Leaders (at-bats), through September 11

  • Dominic Smith, NYM: 17 (127)
  • Maikel Franco, KC: 15 (173)
  • Freddie Freeman, ATL: 15 (161)
  • Cesar Hernandez, CLE: 15 (179)
  • Donovan Solano, SF: 15 (146)
  • Christian Walker, ARI: 15 (166)

Franco and Hernandez are having respectable seasons overall in their first stint in the American League, not just in the doubles category.

The 28-year-old Franco — also leading Major League Baseball overall in games played (46) — is slashing .277/.317/.486 with seven home runs and 30 RBI; the third baseman had just 17 home runs and 56 RBI spanning 123 games in his final season with the Phillies in 2019.

Hernandez, 30, is also the American League leader in plate appearances (201), in part thanks to batting all but one of his 44 games in the leadoff position. The switch-hitter is slashing .257/.332/.374 with a pair of home runs and 13 RBI, while logging 46 hits overall and scoring 22 runs.

The second baseman played 832 games in red pinstripes from 2013-19; in just his 28th game with the Indians last month, he already set a franchise record — becoming their first player to homer while leading off in consecutive games.

Also, Hernandez already has as many doubles this season (15) as he did playing 161 games with the Phillies in 2018; the Venezuela native logged a career-high 31 doubles a year later.

It is good to see both Franco and Hernandez having success with their new teams. The Phillies have since replaced both with promising rookie Alec Bohm and perennial All-Star candidate Didi Gregorius (shifting Jean Segura to second). It is fair to say everything worked out for all parties.

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