Although it may be an overlooked stat, Mookie Betts hasn’t struck out this season. It’s more than just this season though. This streak stretches back all the way to September 12th…of last season. When David Ortiz was still on the active roster (clearly I’m missing him being on the team). Anyways, the fact is that he leads the streak of no K’s, and it’s not even close. This streak is so uncommon that it’s the longest one since Juan Pierre in 2004.
The beauty of all this is that Betts is considered a unique type of power hitter. A man that can be a constant base stealing threat, a constant threat to hit it out, but also a threat to put the ball in play more often than not because he’s likely to not strikeout. It’s absolutely incredible what Betts is able to do. Big time power hitters such as Edwin Encarnacion, Giancarlo Stanton, Nelson Cruz, Chris Davis, and Evan Longoria all have 15 or more strikeouts already. What those stars lack is the contact rate of Betts. They also aren’t the base stealing threat Betts is. Aside from those traits, they also are not gold glove caliber fielders. This just goes to prove even more the value that Mookie Betts has as an all-around superstar.
Image via Keith Allison on Flickr
With his team struggling throughout the season, Betts has been one of the few bright spots in the line-up. Although he missed a few games with the sickness that was going around, Betts came back and has played to his potential. The Boston Red Sox have 77 strikeouts as a team, an average of almost 6 per game.
Being a career .304 hitter and having a career high 82 strikeouts in a season is rare for such a power threat. Few players in the league can compare to what Betts does, and even fewer can reach base like he does. As he continues to mature as a player, Betts should be able to maintain an even lower strikeout rate. Of course, none of us should be expecting him to not strikeout again for the another month or anything crazy, but its not outlandish to expect him to possibly break Juan Pierre’s record, or possibly the all-time record. For those of you curious, the record for most plate appearances without a strikeout is 223. Dave Cash of the Philadelphia Phillies accomplished that record in 1976.
As it currently stands, Betts has already accomplished quite a feat. We’ll be keeping a close eye to see how long he can keep this up. Betts is doing something that’s almost unheard of, and we can only hope he can keep this up as long as possible.
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