Posted: Friday August 27, 1999 06:13 PM
Have a question for Statitudes? Click here. CNNSI.com Statitudes producer Ryan Hunt will answer the most creative and thought-provoking statistical questions in the weekly Statitudes mailbag. This week, the mailbag tackles questions regarding some hitting records.
What player has the most hits in the 1990s?
Quietly, Chicago first baseman Mark Grace has the most hits of the decade. Through Thursday, Grace had 1,722 hits -- four more than Texas first baseman Rafael Palmeiro's 1,718. Amazingly, they were teammates on the 1988 Cubs. San Diego right fielder Tony Gwynn had the lead entering this season, but injures have limited him to only 93 hits this season. He has 1,667 hits this decade -- 55 fewer than Grace. Grace has 151 hits this season, Palmeiro 154.
Who has the better career batting average with an 0-2 count: Wade Boggs or Tony Gwynn?
This is a category Gwynn wins. He has a .259 average when facing an 0-2 hole and has 88 of his 3,021 hits in that situation. Boggs, meanwhile, has 78 hits on a 0-2 count, but is hitting only .238. Cal Ripken, incidentally, has a .211 average with an 0-2 count.
For more on Boggs and Gwynn by count, look here:
What is the record for most hits in a regular season?
George Sisler of the St. Louis Browns (later the Orioles) had 257 in 154 games in 1920. Sisler hit a league-leading .407 that season. To break the record, a player would have to play in all 162 games and average more than 1.5 hits a game. In recent times, Boggs came the closest to Sisler's mark, with 240 hits in 1985.
Why all the fuss about Larry Walker hitting better at home? The entire Seattle Mariners hit better in the Kingdome than anywhere else. So do we not count Ken Griffey Jr.'s home runs that were hit there? Of course not. All this hoopla about Coors Field is crazy. We don't argue Babe Ruth's stats because of the short porch at Yankee Stadium. So why all of a sudden when we have a few players who are doing great and who are capitalizing on what the home parks give them do we fuss. The fact is Walker is the best hitter in the game right now, year in and year out and he has been since going to Colorado. I personally don't understand how the light air affects the number of singles you get but I guess it does.
We fuss because we care. No one is arguing Walker's accomplishments, but it does say something when he is hitting 154 points higher at home than on the road this season. Coors has the thin-air reputation, but it is the vast amount of outfield space that Walker -- to his credit -- has taken advantage of. Griffey, meanwhile, has hit 75 of his 153 homers (49 percent) since the start of the 1997 season on the road. He actually hit more homers away from home in '97 than he did in the Kingdome.
What is the record for consecutive games reaching base through a hit or walk? Hitters like Ted Williams who walked a lot are penalized when it comes to generating consecutive game hitting streaks. Williams actually hit for a higher average than Joe DiMaggio over the span of his 56-game hitting streak.
Although consecutive games reaching base has not always officially been recorded as a stat, DiMaggio holds the record at 74 in 1941. The Yankee Clipper walked in the streak-ending game against Cleveland on July 17, 1941, then had another hitting streak of 16 games. Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter reached base in 53 straight games this season -- 57 dating back to last season.
In the article on Pudge Rodriguez, you told us he has 20 steals and has allowed 25 base runners to steal(as of August 18) to steal off him. Has any catcher ever stolen more bases than he's allowed?
Quite simply, no. And even Pudge will have to have a super September for it to happen. Rodriguez is on pace for 29 steals. He's already allowed 27.