May has been a big month for St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Carlos Beltran, as he was already been named the NL Player of the Week for the period of May 6-13. The switch-hitter’s success continued on Wednesday night as he hit his National League-leading 14th home run and drove in two as his club swept San Diego.
Those two runs batted in are Beltran’s 25th and 26th of the month. That is most impressive, especially considering the right-fielder has been slowed by knee and foot ailments, which have limited him to 16 May starts and 21 games total.
With the help of researcher Tom Orf, we can put Beltran’s 26 RBI into Cardinals full-month May context.
The list that follows indicates 11 prior occurrences of more than 26 May RBI, led by none other than Stan Musial, who plated 40 in May 1954. Beltran’s current hitting coach, Mark McGwire, appears on the list the most times, three. The man’s whose offense Beltran was signed to help replace, Albert Pujols, was the most recent to exceed 26 in May, with 33 in 2006.
May RBI, St. Louis Cardinals, 1950-present
|1954||Stan Musial||40||Ray Jablonski||27|
Reaching the top of this list isn’t entirely out of question for Beltran, as he still has seven games remaining to collect 14 additional RBI. That is an average of two per game, a pace not much greater than he is currently tracking.