Remember the A's? You know, the team that was in the city until 1954 with the white elephant, Connie Mack, Home Run Baker (he hit 12 in 1913) and Shibe Park? The A's made it to the World Series nine times during their stay in Philadelphia -- winning five times -- while the Phillies got there twice before the A's packed up and took off for Kansas City.
The A's also had Jimmie Foxx, the right-handed rival to Babe Ruth as the Sultan of Swat, during the late 1920s and '30s. In 1932, Foxx -- on his way to 534 career homers -- put together a season for the ages by smacking 58 homers and driving in 169 runs with a .364 batting average. Foxx missed winning the Triple Crown by a few hits, finishing second to Boston's Dale Alexander by .003 in the batting race.
In 1933, however, Foxx won the Triple Crown (and his second of three MVP Awards) with 48 homers, 163 RBIs, and a .356 batting average.
Foxx left Philadelphia in 1936 when owner/manager Mack sold him for $150,000 to assuage the team's debts. But after some solid seasons with the Red Sox, including a 50-homer, MVP campaign in 1938, Foxx hit the wall following the 1941 season. He scuffled arund with Boston and the Cubs for a few years before finishing his career as a pitcher with the Phillies in 1945.
Later, Foxx hit some financial and personal hardship. A series of bad investments, coupled with a reported drinking problem, left the Hall of Famer struggling with poverty before he died in 1967 at the age of 59 from choking on a chicken bone.
Interestingly, Tom Hanks' character, Jimmy Dugan, in the movie A League of Their Own, was based on Foxx, who managed a team in the women's baseball league.
Aside from his Philadelphia home run records, many of Foxx's slugging feats held up until the steroid era hit its peak. His 12 consecutive seasons with 30 or more home runs was a major league record until Barry Bonds passed it in 2004, while his 58 homers in '32 stood as the single-season record for a right-handed batter for 56 years until Mark McGwire hit 70 in 1998.
Foxx is still the youngest man ever to reach the 500-home run plateau, doing it just a month shy of his 33rd birthday.
When Foxx retired, his 534 home runs placed him second only to Ruth on the all-time list.
So Ryan Howard has the Phillies record all to himself -- he still has a ways to go to catch Double X for the Philadelphia record.