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Posts Tagged ‘Cy Young’

I’ve been hearing a lot of rumbling from some folks about the lack of offense during Spring Training. Folks, it’s only Spring Training. What’s more, it’s early in Spring Training. If you’re thinking you’ll be seeing this much of Ramiro Pena come the regular season, then you are probably a lost cause. Of course, if you also think this is really a preview of things to come, then I suppose we should fit Ivan Nova for a Cy Young trophy now, as he’d have the most incredible season in history. For that matter, unheralded Jorge Vazquez would slam 72 homers (career high in MiLB: 33, 5 years ago). In other words, you can’t place any faith in Spring Training statistics. Guys don’t play complete games, the level of competition is all over the place and both managers and players are trying different things to see how they work. But in case you’re the type who does place a misguided faith in the numbers, consider this: so far, the nine guys who comprise the Yankee’s starting line-up have accounted for just 39% of the team’s plate appearances this spring. As a group they’ve combined for an .282 batting average and slugged their way to an .831 OPS. That is otherworldly production. Here’s the breakdown: 

ST Stats through March 13, 2011

I’ll take this level of production over 162 games, along with Nova’s Cy Young. :)

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Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game hitting streak is widely considered one of the most enduring records in sports history. It’s right up there with Cy Young’s 511 wins, Ripken’s 2,632 consecutive games, Celtics’ eight consecutive NBA championships and Gretzky’s 2,857 career points.

The streak began on May 15, 1941. During the streak, he had a batting average of .408, 15 home runs and 55 runs batted in. The streak ended on July 16, 1941. In the process, he snapped “Wee Willie” Keeler’s 45-game hitting streak. On July 17th, Cleveland Indians pitchers, Al Smith and Jim Bagby held Joe hitless. He hit two hard shots, but Ken Keltner was flashing the leather at 3rd base that day, and it was all over.

When the streak ended, DiMaggio began a new one. This one lasted only 16 games. Over the span of both streaks, Joe hit safely in 72 of 73 games during that 1941 season.

It’s been just about seventy years since “The Yankee Clipper” achieved this remarkable feat. The only one to really challenge the record was Pete Rose in 1978, when he had a hit in 44 consecutive games. Just like everyone else who went after it, they all came up short (Molitor [39], Rollins [38], Castillo & Utley [35]). A person has to wonder if the record will ever be broken.

Hitting StreaksPlayers With At Least 1 Hit in At Least 30 Consecutive Games
Rank Year Name Team League Games
1. 1941 Joe DiMaggio (AL Record) New York AL 56
2. 1896-1897 Willie Keeler (NL Record) Baltimore NL 45
3. 1978 Pete Rose Cincinnati NL 44
4. 1894 Bill Dahlen Chicago NL 42
5. 1922 George Sisler St. Louis AL 41
6. 1911 Ty Cobb Detroit AL 40
7. 1987 Paul Molitor Milwaukee AL 39
8. 2005-2006 Jimmy Rollins Philadelphia NL 38
9. 1945 Tommy Holmes Boston NL 37
10. 1896-1897 Gene DeMontreville Washington NL 36

“Now this is over thirty years later and the guy said he was that cab driver (who drove DiMaggio to the game on July 17th). He apologized (for telling DiMaggio that he thought the streak would end that day) and he was serious. I felt awful. He might have been spending his whole life thinking he had jinxed me, but I told him he hadn’t. My number was up.” – Joe DiMaggio (more…)

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